Monday, July 31, 2006

Video Obscura I

His Name Is Alive, "Are We Still Married".

Posting the Tom Waits video (See Below) Reminded me that there a number of interesting videos out there that I haven't seen in a while, if ever. This video was shot by The Brothers Quay (who refuse to have their own website) for a guy on the 4AD label who records as His Name Is Alive. Fred Stuhr copied the Quays style for the much lauded video for Tool's "Prison Sex". Anyhow, I have very little to saythese days so I will be blogging videos that I like for the next bit.
BTW, go to and try the Cybermen version of Risk in the games section.

Video Obscura II

His Name Is Alive, "Can't Go Wrong Without You". Video by the Brother's Quay

Video Obscura III

Tom Waits, "What's He Building?" From Mule Variations.

A Refusal to Face Father Time.

"Age is a matter of mind and if you don't mind, it doesn't matter." - Mark Twain

Video in Play: Tom Waits, "I Don't Want To Grow Up" from Bone Machine.

I was thinking recently about how difficult it has been for many of us in Genertion X to let go of our childhoods. Many of us still watch cartoons (Spongebob Squarepants, Justice League, Samurai Jack, Futurama, etc) play games (RPGs, board games, PC and console games)and collect toys. Many of us are still carrying on the way we did when were in our early twenties, hanging out, drinking at home and going to shows. (because we still can't- or won't - afford bar booze) For all of us who just seem unable to let go, this song is our anthem.
Also, for my fellow Canadians, note the name of the show that this came from. Remember City Limits?

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Long Time Ago In a City Far, Far Away...

CD in Play: At the Drive In, Relationship of Command.

I've talked a lot about Montreal and posted some graffiti pics, but never pics of people. One reason is that I didn't actually take many of people, the other is that most of them are currently packed away. I did find this one however in one of my books. It looks a bit crappy, but that has to do with my Dad's lack of stuff to clean his scanner bed with. This is a pic of me in my bouncer days with Dom Castelli and Krista Muir. (AKA Lederhosen Lucil) Krista's boyfriend at the time shot the photo and I got a copy months later. This was Dom's 36th birthday party. A whole slough of people performed that night at the Jailhouse. Dom played in Bloodshot Bill and the Hupcaps (Dom being the Hubcap, Bill being a good guy named Derek) which was a two piece rock'a'billy act from hell. I don't think their show ended with either of them fighting, so it was unique. The photo was shot in the back room of the club.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Pacification Post

CD in Play: Elliott Smith, Either/Or.

As stated to Thoth in the comments for the Barrett post, it has just been too damned hot in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia to type these past few days. Seriously, it apparently got up to just above 38° in some places over the weekend. (it is currently 23°-26° in the Vancouver area) I may have had mild heat stroke/exhaustion on Sunday. I was in the shade for the most part, so I have to wonder - how did the top of my head get burnt? Before this weekend I was training for my new site, so I have been busy.

Films I want to see: Not much that is new, aside from A Scanner Darkly. Apparently Lady in the Water is a real stinker, with the exception of Paul Giamatti's performance. (Giamatti was the main character in Sideways) Upcoming? I am interested in The Prestige and possibly The Illusionist, though I am not really an Edward Norton fan. (Paul Giamatti is also in the film) The documentary, America: From Freedom to Fascism interests me - if it even gets shown here. Mildly curious about Woody Allen's Scoop, though I don't have great expectations for it. Other than that, there is an old Spencer Tracy film I'd like to see from start to finish called Bad Day at Black Rock. I am housesitting at my Dad's and caught a bit of it on TCM.

Current Reading: Re-Reading Thomas Cleary's The Japanese Art of War: Understanding the Culture of Strategy. Aside from that, I have been reading books on cooking. People often ask what I would do if I were able to be one of the idle rich? Aside from travel, paint and maybe set up a brewery/winery/distillery I would learn how to cook like a pro and cook gourmet meals for friends. (even though most of my friends can be squeamish about some of the most mundane delicacies) I have an itch to roast pheasant or some other type of game bird. Also want to try grilling figs.

DVD in Player: Dave Chappelle's Show, Season 2. Funny man.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

RIP, Syd Barrett: January 6, 1946 – July 7, 2006

CD in Play: Pink Floyd, Piper at the Gates of Dawn.

** Updated, see below **
Syd Barrett died on the 7th of this month of a diabetes related illness. Other people have written about Barrett, the former front man and co-founder of Pink Floyd with three solo albums to his name, so I will just post some links.

- Wikipedia's entry on Barrett.
- A story from 2002 in The Observer about Barrett.
- The Observer's Obituary.
- The Beeb's Article and Obituary.
- BBC article by Joe Boyd, author of White Bicycles.
- And CBC's Article.

Overkill? Yeah, but what the hell... Pink Floyd has always been a favouite of mine and Syd deserves no less.

** Decided to update this entry with some links to YouTube for Syd Clips.
Televised Syd Obituary and No.2
Jugband Blues
Astronomy Domine and AD pt 2
Apples and Oranges
Corporal Clegg (actually, Syd is probably not in this one)
Arnold Layne
BBC Look of the Week (interview with Roger Waters and Roger "Syd" Barrett)
Lucifer Sam (fan video edited to the period)
Interstellar Overdrive - The UFO Club (crap sound but cool footage

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

What is this strange feeling...?

CD in Play: Soundgarden, Badmotorfinger (with the Satanoscillatemymetallicsonatas ep)

New Horizons

So I will officially be transferred to Simon Fraser University's Surrey Campus in the swanky and gigantic Central City building. Farewell scabby junkies, hello drugged out students! (and profs) There will be three other security teams between me and the riff-raff so I am in for a less stressful time at work, I think. Just in time too, as it is getting pretty bad in the area.
I am also getting ready to retest for my driver's lisence, since my long standing dispute with ICBC is over. Once I have a DL again, I can look into other, better paying options.


Betty posted a link to this Black Hole site on her site recently, but I liked it so much I had to post it here. Quite fascinating.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Privateers A-Hoy!

CDs in Play: Charles Mingus, Black Saint and the Sinner Lady.

priva·ti·zation (n): The conversion of a public enterprise to a private enterprise. For example, a government-owned railroad or airline may undergo privatization if ownership shares of the enterprise are sold to individual and institutional investors.

pri·va·teer (n) 1: an officer or crew member of a privateer [syn: privateersman] 2: a privately owned warship commissioned to prey on the commercial shipping or warships of an enemy nation. The commander or one of the crew of such a ship. 3: (my own definition) privately owned politicians commissioned to prey upon and destroy public institutions on the behalf of big business.

I firmly believe that the BC Liberals and their ilk would like to destroy Public Education. BC schools are overcrowded and underfunded. The Social Credit governments did not believe in education and the NDP did nothing to remedy the slashings and gouges endured by the system in the SoCred years. People are beginning to get fed up and looking into home schooling (not the best option, in my opinion) or sending their kids to private schools. (provided they can afford it)

Watching Democracy Now! earlier sent a chill up my spine. What happens in the United States often happens up here, slowly. DN ran a story on how the Louisiana State government has permanently shut down public schools and diverted funding for education into charter private schools. (See link here) New Orleans is effectively being "bleached" white and upper middle class. HUD (the US Department of Housing and Urban Development) has stated that it is shutting down numerous public housing projects due to mold and dry rot - which it blames on Hurricane Katrina but have been, in fact, long standing problems that HUD had apparently been refusing to tackle or acknowlege in the past.
This is a disgusting situation. The mainstream media seems unwilling to present the story, so the plight of thousands upon thousands of poor people goes unoticed as they are kicked around by the National Guard and systematically abondoned and betrayed by the people above them.
Canadians should sit up and take note of this, because this is not the sort of thing the Stephen Harpers, Ralph Kleins and Gordon Campbells of this country would disapprove of. These are our services - they are here for us. Most of us, especially if you are part of my generation, are not as well-off as our parents and cannot actually afford to abandon public services for the more costly private services.
Take a bite out of piracy and stand up for your rights now.

Blog Filler

Current attire: 3 piece boiler suit with a bowler derby and fur wings. (Trent should know the reference)
Current mood: middling, I think? Not in a bad mood.
Current music: Bar Tarake, Sepideh. Kurdish music loaned to me by my Kurdish co-worker.
Current annoyance: People who play the racist card to try and get away with bad behaviour. People assuming that I am a member of the Aryan Brotherhood just because I am fair-skinned, blond and shaven headed. If white people bother you that much, then you should have stayed in Iran. Didn't like it there? The shut up, stop behaving like a 3 year old and make the effort to be agreeable. It's not because you are brown that I don't like you, it's because you are an asshole.
What else... blisters on my feet.
Current thing: Nursing my feet.
Current Song in my head: The one currently playing on the Beeb's Doctor Who Website.
Current game in the hard drive: Civ III. Really want Civ IV but need to upgrade the ol' computer first.
Current DVD in player: Close Encounters of the Third Kind.
Current refreshment: Coffee. See, coffee is brown and I like that just fine.
Current worry: Getting back to university and getting the teaching certificate. Also need to look into volunteering somewhere with the age groups I am looking to work with. Trent's father-in-law recommended the Scouts, but that isn't my thing. He stated that working with inner city kids might turn me off, but if the job I have now hasn't made me reconsider... Not really worried about any of this though, just a bit pre-occupied in the back o' the brain.
Current thought: Thought No. 1. Thought No. 2. Thought No. 3. (find the play buttom and hit it - only broadband users in the UK get the full screen)

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Shooting Elephants

CDs in Play: Clutch, eponymous.

I have been re-reading the essays of George Orwell (the pseudonym of Eric Arthur Blair) of late, Shooting an Elephant in particular. I was struck by how much it reminded me of my own job. As I stated in another post, my job really is the frontline in the war against the empovershed. My job is to ensure that the empoversheds' condition doesn't touch/upset the people who frequent the mall. Blair had been a police officer in Burma, whose main job was really to keep the conquered peoples in their places.
Like Blair, I have come to despise both the objective of my job and the people I must target. Blair states at the end of his essay that he shot the elephant not because it was the right thing to do, but because he didn't want to look a fool - and I truly understand what he means. I find myself doing things now simply to establish myself as someone not to screw around with. I discovered that certain people have been trying to take advantage of my good nature, considering me a soft touch due to the kindness I have extended to certain individuals onsite. The word is out that I am "soft" so I have to counter this by being strict. In the past two days I have been "shooting" my own sort of "elephants", banning people and literally removing and hounding them from sight. No chances, no mercy, no considerations.
Reading through some of the other essays again, I have continued being struck by the similarities between E.A. Blair and myself. (Aside from the fact that Blair was a much better writer than myself) Anyhow, I have small, impatient six (nearly seven) year old boy who wishes to watch Rupert on the only DVD player in this house, which is on this same computer.

Was Sergio Leone in Town last night?

Twin midgets. I saw identical twin midgets last night. They were dressed exactly the same. They were hot. They didn't have the characteristic faces of midgets. Aside from being around 3'10", they looked pretty normal from the waist up. They really were quite attractive. That is all I have to say on the subject.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Friends, Flames and Pirates!

CD in Play: Dinosaur Jr., Fossils.

Burn Baby, Burn!

So my friend Trent and his family have been going through a bit of an ordeal. They live in Tumbler Ridge and a fire has been threatening to destroy the community. The emergency has been scaled down, since winds seem to be pushing the fire away from TR. Anyhow, Trent wrote a story on it for The Tyee, What I Learned Fleeing the Tumbler Ridge Fire. There is a link there to another article he wrote back in 2004.
Trent, Collette, Zoe, Jeri, etc... - look after yourselves, and good luck.

Yo, Ho, Ho and a Bottle o' Chum!

With the release of the sequal to Pirates of the Carribean just around the corner - by which I mean tomorrow - and people already talking about a third film guest starring Keith Richards, I have to wonder: Why is no one making biopics for the big screen on real pirates? I saw a BBC "docu-drama" about Edward Teach (AKA the infamous Blackbeard) which was alright, but hardly gripping as a drama. It was told from the perspective one of his crew, one of only two or three to have survived. But what about proper films about men like Edward Teach or Bartholomew Roberts (AKA Black Bart) who was known to be a teetotaler, frowned on gambling, profanity and drinking amongst his men, among other things. Hmmm?

Sunday, July 02, 2006

No Matter How You Look, It's Party Time.

CD in Play: Super Furry Animals, Guerrilla.

A Sort of Child Prodigy

Gavin and Maria's middle child is an unusually creative girl. Things she has made/put up around the house include "Lightswitch to the Sun", numerous self made doll houses/shopping malls/swimming pools/etc, recycles her old socks and turns them into sock puppets, paper dolls, and my ultimate favourite - the picture of a princess with the caption "No matter how you look, it's party time." She was 6 or 7 when she made that one up. Her recent idea was for Internet Exploder. A message pops up while you are online and says Message from Internet Exploder: RUN AWAY! or hit Enter for more Options. Her father's a bit of a nutter so that might explain things.

War Against the Weak

Being a security guard is not particularily prestigious. It has actually caused problems for me in trying to land a place of my own. People refer to us as rent-a-cops, goons, wanna-be's... so it always surprises me when people are slightly shocked to learn that I am not overly fond of my current line of work. Security work these days basically the front line on a war against the impovershed and the downtrodden.
Some of these people pose legitimate problems and can be a real nuisance, but some are just harmless. I can't get into it for certain reasons, but there certain people in the area - security guards from another site - who are going well beyond what they are supposed to do. They kick people out for bottle picking, for looking scruffy, etc.
Anyhow, new options are just on the horizon and things are fixing to get better in my life - so I can leave this sort of crap behind soon, I hope.

May I introduce the Human Mop

Spitting has become an epidemic. These Koreans students spat so much on one stairwell they had covered the first four steps completely in gob. Everywhere I go I see spitttle and plegm all over. I am sick of it. I want to see a health awareness campaign about the problems with spitting - I want fines for people who spit. Tuberculosis is just one disease that can be spread through spitting - and TB has been making a comeback.
If you spit in public, at least have the courtesy to spit down a storm drain or something like that. I'd like to pick up these people and use them to clean up their own messes.