July 10, 2014 #
Last year, out of the blue, he published a book of photographs of himself as a cross-dresser. He also wrote last year about getting his hands on his F.B.I. file and discovering that the United States government thought he might have been the Unabomber. These sorts of things never happen to Michael Chabon.
—From The NY Times review
of William T. Vollman’s new book of ghost stories.
July 7, 2014 #
In Martinique, I had visited rustic and neglected rum-distilleries where the equipment and the methods used had not changed since the eighteenth century. In Puerto Rico, on the other hand, in the factories of the company which enjoys a virtual monopoly over the whole of the sugar production, I was faced by a display of white enamel tanks and chromium piping. Yet the various kinds of Martinique rum, as I tasted them in front of ancient wooden vats thickly encrusted with waste matter, were mellow and scented, whereas those of Puerto Rico are coarse and harsh. We may suppose, then, that the subtlety of the Martinique rums is dependent on impurities the continuance of which is encouraged by the archaic method of production. To me, this contrast illustrates the paradox of civilization: its charms are due essentially to the various residues it carries along with it, although this does not absolve us of the obligation to purify the stream. By being doubly in the right, we are admitting our mistake. We are right to be rational and to try to increase our production and so keep manufacturing costs down. But we are also right to cherish those very imperfections we are endeavouring to eliminate. Social life consists in destroying that which gives it its savour.
—Claude Levi-Strauss, Tristes Tropiques
. The underlying philosophy of liberalism, and the consumer culture it generates, condensed into nine sentences. (via ayjay
July 2, 2014 #
Meanwhile, we don’t need to wait until a hypercapitalist techno-utopia emerges to do right by our struggling neighbors. We could make the choice to pay for universal health care, higher education, and a basic income tomorrow. Instead, you’re kicking the can down the road and hoping the can will turn into a robot with a market solution.
—Intelligently addressing claims of luddism when criticizing technology and capitalism from Alex Payne — Dear Marc Andreessen
July 2, 2014 #
Ford eventually came around with the loan guarantees necessary to let the city borrow again, but only after intense pressure from Congress and European governments — and after his chief of staff’s assistant, an ambitious young draft dodger named Dick Cheney, made the city agree to end free tuition at the City University system — something it had provided through war, recession, and municipal malfeasance since 1847.
—Absolutely wow’d to read about Dick Cheney’s role in The Near-Death of Grand Central Terminal, by Kevin Baker from Harper’s Magazine
June 30, 2014 #
Equally important, there are plenty of them. Mr. Smith, for example, has produced as many as 300 of his paint-droplet “Rain” canvases, according to dealers. Mass production allows artists to make as much money as possible. It also enables contemporary art investors, nervous of notions of rarity, to buy multiple works and to track their price fluctuations, like a commodity, on databases such as Artnet. Flip Art, like Andy Warhol’s Factory-produced Pop Art, can be as reassuringly numerous and uniform as gambling chips.
—The new commodification, from Hot New Artists, Getting Hotter
in the NY Times.
June 19, 2014 #
Magical childhood memories of night time car rides told in web comic animated GIF form.
June 16, 2014 #
What is going on with BART? In 2001, a strike was threatened, and BART employees received a 22 percent raise over the four year period from 2001 to 2005. In 2009, BART employees negotiated a contract that gave no raise for the following four years. When an agreement wasn't reached by July 1st, 2013, the BART unions held a 5 day strike immobilizing many in the Bay Area. The strike only ended because the Governor instituted a 60 day cooling off period. The major points of contention for the unions are pay raises, reduced employee contribution to pensions, medical benefits and safety.
June 2, 2014 #
When working on the This Heat CDs Gareth was always very meticulous and precise with detail, even small things that people wouldn’t really notice, typography ‘jokes’ that weren’t in any way obvious, but there anyhow: the insert for Repeat, which myself and Gareth worked on for weeks, was a very precise construction and actually contains a kind of code in the grid. The presentation had to be ‘just so’.
—Andrew Jacques of These Records
on Gareth Williams from this interview in The Wire with people responsible for the Flaming Tunes reissue
. A code in the grid of Repeat! Would love to decode that.
May 12, 2014 #
In Los Angeles you can be standing next to another human being but you may as well be standing next to a geological formation. Whatever that thing is, it doesn’t care about you. And you don’t care about it. Get over it. You’re alone in the world. Do something interesting.
—BLDGBLOG, from 2007, on one of the three great cities
in the United States.
April 25, 2014 #
Perfect for working in this wet San Francisco Spring.
Origins espresso, high gravity beer & purple haze came together to make this 12 cassette 30 minute mix freeform at 2am