September 30, 2004
Documentary and Anti-Graphic Photographs


Julien Levy ran one of the most important galleries in New York in the 1930s & 1940s, "discovering" Joseph Cornell, and all in all pushing forward what would become the second wave of modern art. Like the Surrealists he showed, Levy had an early appreciation for photography, and in 1935 mounted a show of photographs by Manuel Alvarez Bravo, Walker Evans, and Henri Cartier-Bresson. The Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson has re-mounted the show, a few images of which are online.

Posted by dbrown at 06:57 PM
September 28, 2004
Open Source Cooking

Slashdot ref'd Cooking For Engineers yesterday, and it's a groovy blog, all the great things about Alton Brown but no schtick, just clear charts and almost autistically straightforward instructions. Which would have been enough for me, but then looking at actual recipes, like Garlic Roasted Potatoes>, I notice that the straightforwardness is only a beginning. In true (?) collaborative/"Open Source" fashion, the recipes get more and less precise, and generally better, in the comments.

Another moment when the web impresses.

Posted by dbrown at 06:56 PM

"As you can guess, we were cock-a-hoop about that," said Dr. John C. T. Church, a retired surgeon who was the study's lead author. in the NYTimes

Posted by dbrown at 06:50 PM
September 26, 2004
Blogging's 15 minutes, continued

As many of you (whoever you are these days) know, there's an epic-length cover story in the Times Magazine about political bloggers. I'm sure there's plenty to say about it, but what struck me, is that reading about all these folks -- atrios, kos, wonkette, mydd, jesse and ezra of pandagon -- I felt like I was reading a story about my high school buddies, or the people I hung out with at the break fast tonight. We were talking tonight about people's obesession and indentification with US Weekly-level celebrities; the joy I took in reading about the bloggers felt very different, and I think it is because it is a democratic (small d) form of celebrity -- they are famous because/even though everyone gets a bigger piece of them, and in the non-TPM, non-Wonkette cases, gets to be part of that celebrity. And it is not their performance or looks that thrill us, it is their thoughts, a qualitative difference.

And, of course, I was in wonkette's wedding party, that made me identify with her more.

And also, at tonight's first break fast (man, that yom kippur social whirl), spent 5 minutes with a friend just listing the political blogs we read every day. It was like finding that one person in high school who liked the smiths, too.

It's almost enough to give one hope.

Posted by dbrown at 12:14 AM
September 24, 2004
Robot Sex News

Just as Wired News runs a story on Teledildonics, specifically the Sinulator, I was browsing the office mail and realized that if there ever is a robot you can fuck, it's going to be sold via The Sharper Image. All of the future will be sold via The Sharper Image.

Posted by dbrown at 01:52 PM
September 23, 2004
What it was like to be blind in 1872


On ebay this week, an 1870s photo album of CDVs and tintypes of students at a Virginia school for the blind. It is a mystery what it felt to be alive in america in 1872; it is an even bigger mystery what it was like to be blind and alive in america in 187s. This album is an imperfect glimpse. No pun intended.

Posted by dbrown at 04:25 PM
September 20, 2004
I Tan for Jesus

from a long story about a Christian televangelist, Paul Crouch, who "had paid a former employee $425,000 to keep silent about an alleged homosexual tryst." --

'Kelly Whitmore, a former personal assistant to Jan Crouch, said in interviews with The Times that she used a TBN American Express card to make numerous personal purchases for Jan and Paul, including ... a tanning bed.

TBN officials said ... the tanning bed was used to darken the skin of 25 actors cast in TBN stage productions set in Biblical times."

Posted by dbrown at 09:06 AM
September 16, 2004
Poll of the Day

Harris poll, in the Wall Street Journal:

Kerry 48 (Aug: 47; July: 41)
Bush 47 (Aug: 47, July: 51)

Posted by dbrown at 10:18 AM
September 15, 2004
Travels with George

This passage from Russ Baker's "why bush left texas" -- "'I had the impression that he knew that Georgie was using pot, certainly, and perhaps cocaine," she said." -- made me, for a moment, have a sense memory of inhaling. And I thought with some shock, yes, maybe GWBush and I have shared the exact same feeling, of the moment when the drugs hit the brain. Now, I don't know what drugs feel like on someone else's brain, but it can't be that different. It was a moment of connection with the president, and it felt really weird to have any connection.

But then this also reminds me of a party in college, when I stumbled out into the backyard to piss in the bushes (it was a crowded party). A friends' half-dog, half-wolf, Jasper, was tied up back there; the dog-wolf didn't like anyone except his owners. I thought, and explained to Jasper that he and were both the same, we both pissed outside. I pissed, and spoke soothingly to the dog-wolf. It didn't work with Jasper. It probably wouldn't work with George.

Posted by dbrown at 03:49 PM
September 10, 2004
Guide to William Eggleston

via Coincidences, The Eggleston Artistic Trust has a new and amazing site of Ol' Bill E's work, including glimpses of the portfolios and artist's books, some stories on him, and etc. The most amazing newly seen stuff are the documents in the Archive, especially his early b/w work, published in Memphis State University's "Phoenix." This one echoes so many different Frank's from The Americans I'm not even sure what to point toward.

Posted by dbrown at 12:22 PM
The Right Tool for the Job

Frank Lloyd Wright, in 'A Testament':

'... a famous Japanese poet wrote a sign “please keep off the grass”; set it up on the freshly seeded lawn in front of his new house. Every morning the sign was gone. But he kept on for several more days, posting a new sign each morning which he had himself written. Each morning the sign was gone. In despair the poet asked advice of a friend: Said the friend, “Employ a sign-writer to make the sign.” The poet did. The sign stayed.'

(this reminds me of one John Cage's little one-minute stories, as heard in Indeterminacy [with David Tudor], as seen in Silence.)

Posted by dbrown at 12:09 AM
September 07, 2004
Poll of the Day

Tuesday September 07, 2004--The Rasmussen Reports Presidential Tracking Poll shows President George W. Bush with 47% of the vote and Senator John Kerry with 47%. The Tracking Poll is updated daily by noon Eastern.

I know, a tied poll ain't something to crow about, but let's dispell that Bounce bullshit.

Posted by dbrown at 12:00 PM
September 02, 2004
J.F. Sebastian's Workshop

So I've asked the question before, and I'll ask it again: If you could fuck a robot, would you?

Most recently, a response pointed me to Real Dolls, $6500 lifesize silicone sex buddies. Not animatronic, let alone pseudo-sentient, and thus nowhwere near the answer. But as with Blade Runner's "toys," Real Dolls require maintenance and repair. Enter Real Doll Doctor, which has more images of the Dolls, in something like amateur-porn-splendor. The meat, if you will, is in the Real Doll Surgery pages. This is the future, obsessed men spending hours repairing their silicone-based sex partners.

note: truly disturbing imagery, close that office door

Posted by dbrown at 03:07 PM

This morning, on the F train, I wondered if this was the beginning:

"KATMANDU, Nepal, Sept. 1 - Thousands of enraged Nepalese attacked a mosque and more than a hundred Muslim-owned businesses and homes here on Wednesday to protest the killing of 12 Nepalese workers by terrorists in Iraq. ... Protesters also attacked the offices of international airlines from Muslim countries, including the national carriers of Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Pakistan. They broke windows and dragged computers, furniture and papers into the street and set them ablaze. The homes and businesses of local Muslims were also attacked, according to witnesses."

Posted by dbrown at 12:19 PM