Wednesday, June 30, 2010

I Wish ‘Gwen Conliffe’ Could Exist

“I can help you.”

“There’s no help for me.”

“If such things exist, if they are possible, then everything is. Magic. And God. I can find a way to stop it.”

“I must get back to Talbot Hall and end this.”

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

That’s a wonderful scene from Joe Johnston’s 2010 werewolf movie, “The Wolfman.”

That’s Emily Blunt as ‘Gwen Conliffe,’ the beautiful and intelligent Victorian woman who believes in cause and effect and believes she can help Lawrence Talbot. That’s Benicio Del Toro as ‘Lawrence Talbot,’ doing a terrific job as a classic kind of werewolf, the thoughtful, troubled, terrified-of-what-he’s-become kind of werewolf.

I really liked this movie. It received terrible reviews. The reviews were so bad that I didn’t go see the film at the theaters but waited and watched it on DVD.

I wish I’d gone to a theater.

But it had gotten awful word-of-mouth. I did a post from the head make-up artist who complained about the CGI people:

Grousing And Werewolf Grousing

And then just before the film opened I pretended to write a note on my palm about going to see it:

The Writing On My Hand

But the reviews were so passionately negative that I decided to save my money.

I wish I’d gone to a theater. I wish I’d ignored the reviews.

It’s not a great film. There are some pretty big plot holes. Why did Gwen summon Lawrence home? Why didn’t the Gypsies have silver bullets? The townsfolk did have silver bullets, why didn’t they work? Why did Gwen hurry to Talbot Hall only to run away?

A lot of key points about the plot don’t make any sense.

But a lot of cool stuff does make sense. And the filmmakers did a great job recreating the Nineteenth Century, both in visuals and in the characters of the people. The film does a wonderful job showing civilization confronting the wild, of science confronting magic, of love and hate in the hearts of men and women.

It’s a really good movie.

It’s not a teen movie. There is nothing romantic about this werewolf. It’s an adult movie and a reasonably well-made adult movie. I’d have been proud to have made it. (I would have fixed-up the plot holes, but, nonetheless, I’d have been proud of it.)

It’s not a great movie. But it’s a really good movie.


I did a playful post about Lawrence Talbot myself a couple of years back:

Thoughtful, Troubled, Terrified Of Myself

And I did a serious werewolf story years ago, too:

Sally Gorgon And The Shattered Werewolf, Part 1

Sally Gorgon And The Shattered Werewolf, Part 2

Sally Gorgon And The Shattered Werewolf, Part 3

Sally Gorgon And The Shattered Werewolf, Part 4

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Mischa: The Temptation To Go Unplugged

I found a rug in an old junk shop

I brought it home to you

Along the way the colors ran

The orange bled the blue

“I Do It For Your Love,” Paul Simon

I don’t think Atlantis is in the house
Mischa Barton’s selling on the West Coast.
(And, to be clear, I don’t think Atlantis
is around Mischa Barton’s house, either.)

I can’t even come up with a pretend
screwball metaphor for why Atlantis
would be in the house Mischa is selling.

I saw a picture of Mischa wearing
a yellow dress. I don’t think aliens
will kidnap Mischa or her yellow dress.

If I ever, somehow, bought Mischa’s house
I strongly suspect I’d spend too much time
playing an un-mic’ed acoustic guitar
without lights or a camera running
improvising folk songs without drama,
just endless sappy dirges recounting
ghosts and the origin of consciousness.
It would take a lot of production tricks
to add value to that kind of content
and without a mic or a camera
a one-person operation is lost.

Of course everyone’s lost anyway but
I’m afraid Mischa’s house might be more lost
than the places Atlantis might have been.
Or might still be. So, yeah, that’s really lost.

Electric guitars, digital keyboards —
These things need to be plugged in. I don’t want
any (more) temptation to go unplugged.

(Here’s a bit of music world trivia. I used to know a really good semi-professional drummer. His hero in the world of drumming, a guy he regarded as the best drummer alive, was a professional drummer named Steve Gadd. Steve Gadd plays drums on this Paul Simon clip.)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Mischa: A House That Can’t Be Fixed

The Apocalypse Of Her Yellow Dress

Ghosts Are Us


A Consolation And An Inspiration

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pluto In Magic And Alchemy

Who can explain

The thunder and rain

But there’s something in the air

“Don’t Get Me Wrong,” Chrissie Hynde

The planet Pluto is moving farther from the Sun.

The atmosphere of Pluto is cold, getting colder,
condensing to exotic snows that will fall and freeze
against the planet’s surface leaving it stripped of gas,
with almost no atmosphere at all for its cold night.

If distance acts anything like we think distance acts
then Pluto is too far away for us to sing to,
too far away to hear us play guitar or keyboard,
too far away to hear a ballad—folk, rock or jazz.

The planet Pluto is moving farther from the Sun.

If distance acts like magicians and alchemists think
then Pluto is right here—right now we are with Pluto.

      If I could touch you
      Put my finger against your skin
      Would you smile and let me in
      Would you let me see you cry
      Let the warmth from my touch
      Make all your tears dry
      If I could touch you
      Would the heat be a thrill
      Would you let me get closer still
      If I could touch you

Magicians and alchemists think distance is a myth
and myths are just words magicians and alchemists use
and their words almost never act the way we would think.

The planet Pluto is moving farther from the Sun.

Pluto, now, is too far away for us to sing to.

Or that might be a myth and a quiet jazz ballad
might generate a little warmth, cause exotic snows
to swirl in a gentle up-draft for just a moment.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

How Pluto’s First Moon Got Its Name

A Spaceship That Sparks

The New Horizons Spacecraft As Julia Adams

Friday, June 25, 2010

All That’s Left Of The Atlantic Ocean

All your love is gone

So sing a lonely song

Of a deep blue dream . . .

“Love Her Madly,” The Doors

All that’s left of the Atlantic ocean
is in the fish bowl behind this woman.

She’s singing—more or less—a lonely song
and because there are no cameramen left
when she finishes she has to reach up
and fiddle with her camera by herself.

Back when the oil first started to rain down
on the people of the United States
some men and women dreamed of becoming
movie stars, TV stars and music stars.

Now that there are no movies or TVs
and there’s nobody left to go to clubs
there’s still the dream of becoming a star
even if you run the camera yourself
and even if the night is the flat black
of an oily sky above oily ground.

This woman’s still dreaming a deep blue dream.

Even if her shoulders weren’t rocking
the sexy post-apocalypse tee shirt
and she weren’t the Fire Maiden in charge
of what’s left of the Atlantic ocean
just because she’s dreaming the deep blue dream
I would still love her—more or less—madly.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Raining oil in Louisiana?
— from the Christian Science Monitor

North America faces years of toxic oil rain from BP oil spill
chemical dispersants — from

A dire report prepared for President Medvedev by Russia’s Ministry of Natural Resources is warning today that the British Petroleum (BP) oil and gas leak in the Gulf of Mexico is about to become the worst environmental catastrophe in all of human history threatening the entire eastern half of the North American continent with “total destruction”.from The European Union Times

Fire Maidens From Atlantis Via Russia

A Shadow Too Dark For Atlantis

Shanghai In The Epipelagic Layer

The Flat Night

These Are The New Days

Modern Romance In The Noir

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Beautiful Parking Lot Without Mercy

I’m standing on a concrete sidewalk on the edge
of a black asphalt parking lot. Across the lot
a woman I know is walking to her parked car.

White light reflecting from big clouds high overhead
and orange light from the Sun setting in the west
glimmer against the black asphalt making it look
like the woman I know is walking on water.

I think to myself: “Look. She’s walking on water.
I knew she’d be able to do that kind of stuff.”

I cannot walk over to her to say hello.
I can’t walk on water. I know I would fall in.
I’d fall in, get sucked under, drown in whatever
is below the surface even though the surface
I know is only pretend on pretend water.


I was going to write more. About standing stones.
About the Moon in the east behind purple clouds.
About this woman I know walking to her car
across a parking lot that turns into water,
then into grass and fills with a circle of stones.
About this woman walking out of the Stonehenge
in the parking lot and seeing me watching her.
About me turning away, looking at the Moon,
watching the sky, strangely, turn instantly to night,
staring at bright stars behind the Moon, wondering
what constellation was so impossibly bright.


I’m sitting at the keyboard of my computer.

I didn’t want to write more. I knew the bright stars
were a distraction, an unreal constellation,
something to hold my attention while the woman
took a few more steps across the lost parking lot
then reached out, grabbed me from behind and pulled me in.

I’m sitting at the keyboard of my computer.

But I’m lost now, too, and all the stars overhead
are too bright and the patterns they make are unreal.

I’m sitting at the keyboard of my computer.

I hear something that sounds like waves on rocks, splashing,
or maybe it’s the sound of car engines rumbling
or maybe it’s the sound of a woman laughing.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Parking Lots

Parking Lots At Night #1: The Morning Fashion Shoot

Parking Lots At Night #2: Dinner With Shelby

Parking Lots At Night #3: The Parking Lot At Night

Parking Lots At Night #4: The Next Day

Defying Nature In The Parking Lot

A Bobber On The Asphalt

To Push Away The Universe Itself


“Expedition” Versus “Going Out”

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Harajuku Station Forever

I wish I was walking past
the Harajuku station forever

and all the cosplay girls posed
and then all the cosplay girls laughed at me

because I looked so funny
smiling so wide, staring at them so hard

or maybe they are laughing
from the joy of posing, being stared at

or maybe they are laughing
because they are in costume forever

and it’s fun forever at
the Harajuku station forever.

I wish I was walking past
the Harajuku station forever

and somebody was smiling

and somebody was laughing.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Harajuku Station, at JapaneseLifestyle

Harajuku, at Wikipedia

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Stop-Motion Animation Meets Wood Burning


My least favorite way of blogging is “re-blogging” someone else’s content. I almost never do it, but a couple of days ago I saw something so cool that I’m going to re-blog it here.

Over at an Adobe site promoting, mostly, their Creative Suite products, a guy named Jack Nack often puts up great links to cutting edge stuff from the art world. (Adobe products are too expensive for us normal civilians but Adobe programs are the entrenched, standard tools of artists who work for corporations and can expense away the $$$ .)

Monday Nack put up a music video from some Euro-musician that used very cool stop-motion animation. At first I thought it was “just” computer graphics but Nack included a link to a behind-the-scenes video which shows how the music video was created. It turns out the filmmakers actually used real-world physical stop-motion animation, and they built the real-world props out of wood that had been distressed using wood-burning techniques.

Talk about old school meets the new world!

It’s great stuff. And it’s inspiring stuff, too.

Here are embedded, non-HD versions of both the music video and the behind-the-scenes making-of video.

Tim Knol - When I Am King (HD) from SubmarineChannel on Vimeo.

Making Of Tim Knol's "When I Am King" music video from SubmarineChannel on Vimeo.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

When Any Woman Visits My Studio

Mathilda And Nicole

Monday, June 21, 2010


There’s an old man trying to put a book on a shelf
but there are already so many books on the shelf
there’s no room for the new book among the other books.

There’s a young woman playing a flute, improvising
a melody with her eyes closed, her body swaying.

There’s a rumbling sound from outside as a truck drives past.

There are six groups of people standing, softly sobbing.

There are six bodies on the floor, not moving, silent.

There are people standing, whispering on telephones.

There are people sitting, pressing keys on computers.

The old man gives up trying to squeeze a book between
books already on the shelf and turns the book sideways
and slides it horizontally on top of the books
already on the shelf wedged tightly from side to side.

The young woman improvising a flute melody
plays a staccato phrase mezzoforte piano,
an exhalation fugue with the truck noise from outside.

Unending episodes. A theme forever seeking
recapitulation. A due. Ad libitum.
Affannato. The noise outside. The improvised song.

There is an old man turning away from a bookshelf.

There is a young woman playing a song on a flute.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

This is a still picture taken from a French film called “Gainsbourg, vie héroïque.” The woman sitting on the floor is a British model-turned-actress named Lucy Gordon. Just before the film was released Lucy Gordon committed suicide.

There is a place, something like a community, sometimes called the ‘fashion world.’ People in the fashion world try to mix something like art with something like business. Sometimes people outside the fashion world refer to the people inside the fashion world as the ‘beautiful people.’

Trying to mix art with business—in the music world they say all the boys want to play an instrument and all the girls want to be an instrument—creates fantasies like that picture, which are something like a counterpoint melody—and better than nothing!—to something like melodies like this:

Ruslana Korshunova—Model, suicide, June 2008

Lucy Gordon—Model, actress, suicide, May 2009

Daul Kim—Model, suicide, November 2009

Alexander McQueen—Fashion designer, suicide, February 2010

Ambrose Olsen—Model, suicide, April 2010

Tom Nicon—Model, suicide, June 2010

There is an old man turning away from a bookshelf.

There is a young woman playing a song on a flute.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Exact Numbers

Too many hands on my time
Too many feelings
Too many things on my mind

When I leave
I don’t know what I’m hoping to find
When I leave
I don’t know what I’m leaving behind

Rush, Analog Kid

There used to be a big billboard
of Maria Sharapova
just a block away from my house.

I could see it over the roofs
of the buildings in the alley.

It was a big billboard version
of a print campaign for watches.

Oddly the advertising types
took it down the Friday before
the start of French Open tennis.

Today is the Friday before
the start of Wimbledon tennis.

Nobody put Maria back
on the billboard behind my house.

I miss her although I’d never
wear the watch she advertises.

I am not an analog kid.

My watch has to be digital.

I know what I’m leaving behind.

I know what I’m hoping to find.

I am made of exact numbers.

I miss Maria’s picture but
even big pictures are flat things
no matter how you look at them.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

A Real Hawk Scares A Fashion Swan

The Fuzzy Green Balls Aren’t Monsters

Maybe The Fuzzy Green Balls Are Monsters

Cookies And High Heels In A Clean Kitchen

Thursday, June 17, 2010

These Are The New Days

Ten thousand little
fragments of Orwell
coruscate around
us all like mayflies
with silenced pistols,
mayflies shooting us
all in the head with
little hollow points
that carve through our brain
exploding away
the chunks of our self
that don’t conform to
ten thousand little
Newspeak lexicons
the damn little bugs
want us all to talk.
They quickly die but
they’re quickly replaced
by a new damn hatch.
These are the new days
when a cage of rats
strapped onto your face
is sweet nostalgia.

Fragments of Orwell

Abiogenic formation of oil
is the word of the day. I knew the word
even before methane on Saturn’s moon
got astrophysicists using the word
in public where people could hear them talk
as opposed to over drinks in a bar
where everyone would just shrug and say, “Yes,
abiogenics does explain some things.
But if oil’s a renewable resource
the environmental Left loses out
big time and their whole ‘limits to growth’ spiel
is undercut so if anybody
talks about this in a public forum
they better choose their fucking words with care.”

Yeah. So oil will continue gushing out
at very high pressure into the Gulf.
Very high pressure, too, will be applied
to every politician discussing
the nature of the pressure in the Gulf
and the nature of the oil in the Gulf.

If I were Atlantis I would have moved
to one of the moons of Jupiter, too,
away from the pressures of Saturn’s moons,
and away from the flat night that’s falling
over the Atlantic ocean on Earth.

A guitar has six strings. A viola
has four strings. A classical piano
has eight-eight keys. But modern keyboards
often make do with sixty-one keys and
use digital signal processing chips
that let you shift octaves and split the keys.

If there ever is another sunrise
musicians will experience pressure
to choose an appropriate instrument
for songs appropriate to the new days.

Abiogenic is a tough lyric.

I’m going to practice playing the word
on guitar and a digital keyboard.

Musicians are going to have to choose
which fucking instrument they play with care.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Abiogenic petroleum origin at Wikipedia

“The Mystery of BP's Deepwater
Horizon” at Antipas Ministries

Fire Maidens From Atlantis Via Russia

The Flat Night

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Puddle Monsters: Puddles In The Sky

How long is the coast-line of Britain? Or how long
is the bounding circumference of a puddle?

It sounds like a simple question but the answer,
like a puddle’s edge, becomes more complicated
the closer you look. There’s an infinity there.
Or there’s something like an infinity because
when the scale becomes small enough nobody knows
what metaphysics—or what creatures—you will find.

I think that’s where puddle monsters live. On the edge.
In the edge. Where ever, what ever, the edge is.

Puddle Monsters: Creatures Of The Edge

Clouds are pretty white puddles in the sky.

Clouds have complex edges like real puddles.

Do UFOs fly out of cloud edges
and disappear into them to go home?

Do fish and frogs fall out of cloud edges?

Shifting infinities, do cloud edges
suck up people, make them missing persons?

Will dinosaurs fall out of cloud edges?

Thunder and lightning. Rain falls out of clouds.
Puddles on the ground reflect the lightning,
tremble in resonance with the thunder.
Puddles evaporate, rejoin the clouds.

To fetch a pail of water, Jack and Jill
went up the hill.
But everybody knows
nobody would dig a well on a hill.

Clouds have edges and water keeps secrets.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Puddle Monsters

Puddle Monsters: Creatures Of The Edge

Puddle Monsters: Sonya And The Shoe

Puddle Monsters: The Clouds Of Neptune

Puddle Monsters: Sonya And The Shoe #2

I Hear Dinosaur Music. It’s Beautiful Music.

Modern Romance In The Noir

Frogs From The Sky!

Dumpling Kaiser #1: Dumpling

Dumpling Kaiser #2: Dumpling Rising

Dumpling Kaiser #3: Jack And Jill

Dumpling Kaiser #4: Clouds

Dumpling Kaiser #5: Thinking About It Now

Big Glass Views Of The Heavens

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Frogs From The Sky!

Throughout history, there have been tales of raining frogs. These stories, as crazy as they may seem, are actually real events! From Biblical tales of Egyptian storms to British towns suddenly finding themselves covered with frogs falling from the sky, such events are caused when a wind storm passes over a pond or lake teaming with frogs, picking them up and dumping them elsewhere!

One recent story, from the Press Democrat news services, was in June of 1997.

"CULIACAN, Mexico- It rained toads in the town of Villa Angel Flores.

A small tornado whirled up a cluster of toads from a local body of water Saturday night and dropped them all the town in the Pacific coast state of Sineloa, the newspaper El Debate reported Tuesday.

Motorists reported the amphibians dropping from the sky around 11 p.m."

But these stories are not uncommon - there was a story as recently as June of 2005 when a Belgrade paper reported a similar incident in Serbia.

It's Raining Frogs!, from Frogland:

Raining animals, at Wikipedia

Frogs and fishes—and lots of other things—fall out of the sky frequently enough that even the mainstream media have come to accept it as a real phenomenon, but the media—of course—simply call it a “meteorological” event. Tornados or waterspouts pick up creatures from one place and drop them someplace else.

What sometimes doesn’t get reported is that when people look into details of these events now and then they discover that the fishes or frogs that fall from the sky simply do not live anywhere near the area where they fall. Somehow fishes or frogs or other things apparently get transported very great distances.

If, that is, this kind of thing really is just a meteorological phenomenon.

This stuff happens so much—often enough with the “falls” involving things local residents don’t recognize—that Forteana buffs for a very long time have wondered if the falls might be coming from Someplace Else.

Do the falls come from outer space?

Do the falls come from another time?

Do the falls come from another dimension?

Evolution has never really answered the question of where new species come from. The theory, of course, is that new species evolve from changes to existing species, either through the gradual accumulations of small changes that over time add up to a complete new breeding population or through some ‘punctuated’ process where DNA somehow changes in a radical way in a short time branching a new breeding population from a current population. But nobody has ever observed the formation of a totally new species.

Maybe new species just fall out of the sky.

But more interesting than simple biology issues is the notion that maybe this is how the dinosaurs will return.

Maybe a breeding population of dinosaurs will just fall out of the sky.

I’ve written about dinosaurs coming back a couple of times.

I Hear Dinosaur Music. It’s Beautiful Music.

Modern Romance In The Noir

For the most part these posts kind of wrote themselves. I didn’t plan them, I didn’t have this topic in the back of my mind—consciously—and write the posts to bring the topic forward.

But, the posts having been written, I’ve become interested in the topic. I’ve been wondering if, in fact, dinosaurs might come back and how they might accomplish their return.

I suspect they might just fall from the sky.

Nobody really knows where stuff comes from when it falls from the sky. Even though “common sense” says that what goes up must come down therefore what comes down must first have gone up, Forteana buffs know—and have known for generations—that the world is a wacky, fun place and sometimes common sense just doesn’t cut it when trying to explain things that happen.

It would be interesting if dinosaurs fell from the sky. It would be interesting dealing with the dinosaurs. And it would be interesting trying to figure out where the hell they came from before they fell from “our” sky.

Monday, June 14, 2010

The Impossible Kisses Statement On Lady Gaga

I know many people on the internet believe—for instance, the people at The Vigilant Citizen—that Lady Gaga is an element of what Fox Mulder called the military-industrial-entertainment complex working a trauma model project on everyone in the world, i.e., the globalization of Project Monarch, to fragment and manipulate our consciousness.

I completely disagree.

I strongly believe Lady Gaga is just the gays getting back at the straights in retaliation for Disco Demolition Night.

Revenge is a dish.

Best. Served. Cold.

Mischa: A House That Can’t Be Fixed

Girl don’t you know every time I see you smiling
It hurts so bad ’cause when I see you I start crying
I try everything to stop but there’s no denying
That falling in love with you girl is just like dying

Monkees, “Words”

Mischa Barton’s house is for sale again.

She listed it before, got no buyers,
so she found a new real estate agent
who raised the price and listed it again.

A real estate woman I know just laughed—
“To say ‘asking price’ you have to say ‘ass.’”

The home does have a pool. I know I can’t
fix the world. Nobody can save Mischa.
But if someday I’m going to be found
floating face down in a Hollywood pool
the ex-swimming pool of Mischa Barton
has a wonderfully slapstick echo.

I like The Doors but I have never been
psychedelic. I’m the Monkees. Pretend.

Is Mischa Barton an L.A. woman?
Isn’t she just a pretend lost angel?

I don’t know if I’d spend eight million bucks
for a house just because it can’t be fixed.

Why else would anyone buy Mischa’s house?

I don’t know if I’d spend eight million bucks
for a house just because it can’t be fixed.

If they say I never thought about it
You know they are a liar.
— I’ll give her that.

A Monkees note: Monkees fans may notice in this video
they are all pretending to play the wrong instruments. According
to Monkees legend this is how the boys actually thought the ‘band’
should have been constructed. But TV people assigned
the instruments differently. This video is the boys pretending
to do things the way they wanted. This video is fake pretend.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Real Estalker — UPDATE: Mischa Barton

Mischa: Sexy Things About Physics

Dead Monkeys. Swimming Pools. Movie Stars.

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Flat Night

What are the stars but points
in the body of God where we insert
the healing needles of our terror and longing?

Thomas Pynchon, “Gravity’s Rainbow”

What is an ocean corrupted by oil
but a counterfeit night sky without stars?

An abyss with no distance or wishes—
the blackness of a coal mine smothering
a canary then turning to liquid
and spreading itself out for us as if
proud of itself wanting us to dive in—
boats float on it but sailors imagine
their boats dying like birds being smothered.


We watch the sunrise,
feel terror in the new light,
long for the real night.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

“Sexy As The Dead Bridges”

Is This A Junkyard Church

Shanghai In The Epipelagic Layer

A Shadow Too Dark For Atlantis

Modern Romance In The Noir

Thursday, June 10, 2010

A Scene From “The Big Screen Girl”


“Oh-oh,” I said. “The cool people are here. Pretend we weren’t talking about cinematography.”

Nancy and Brian walked up. Everyone was kind of grinning and Brian asked, “What were you guys just talking about?”

I shrugged. “Nothing. You know. Show business stuff. I was talking about sex. James was talking about drugs. Sam was talking about rock and roll. Suzy was talking about money. What else is there?”

I leaned toward Nancy and kissed her on the cheek. “It’s been a long time. Did you miss me? Do you still love me?”

Nancy put on one of those long-suffering faces all women get good at. At least all the women I know get good at those faces. She said, “Yes, I missed you. Yes, I still love you.”

Brian pointed from Nancy to me, then asked her, “Didn’t you two have breakfast this morning?”

“Yes,” Nancy said. “But that was like three hours ago. For Mark that’s a long time.”

“Hey, three hours is like two made-for-TV movies,” I said. “Just think of all the changes you go through watching one made-for-TV movie.”

“I don’t go through any changes watching a made-for-TV movie,” Suzy said. “I’m a big screen girl. TV doesn’t move me at all. Only real cinema gets me going.”

“What about YouTube?” I asked. “Isn’t that where everything is happening these days? Doesn’t watching clips on your computer make you laugh, make you cry, make you think?”

Suzy said, “What am I, Miley Cyrus? That computer crap is for school kids and the kind of clueless people who used to think disco was cool.”

Brian asked, “You didn’t worry about lonelygirl15 and the trait positive girls?”

“The only reason I even know what that is comes from listening to other people talk about it,” Suzy said. “I’ve never clicked on any of it.”

“Of course,” I said, “if this were a made-for-TV movie right now—or something on the internet—you would have just marked yourself as The Girl Something Happens To.”

“Oh, I’m so scared,” Suzy said.

“You’re just making things worse!” I said.


. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(Someday I might continue this. Or I might not.
This is a scene from a kind of urban version
of the “Blair Witch Project” I’d someday
like to film. “Cloverfield” was
a shaky cam urban movie, but it was
a monster film. I think
the “Blair Witch Project”
was so powerful because it was
a modern horror film. I’d like to do
a shaky cam urban horror film.)

Mathilda And Nicole

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

The Intention Of A Zombie’s Kiss

Before you slip into unconsciousness

I’d like to have another kiss

“The Crystal Ship,” The Doors

In the summer of 1967
the number one song in America was
“Light My Fire,” by The Doors, a song written by
their guitar player. They never intended
the song to be a hit. They recorded it
at just over seven minutes long, with two
solos, keyboard and guitar. They intended
the song to be trance-inducing, mystical.
Their producer did a tape edit cutting
out both solos for a three minute version.

That was the soundtrack for the Summer of Love.

Mutilated, the song’s intention remained.

We’re now two generations away from that.

A kiss is supposed to be still a kiss but
the intention of a kiss always remains.

Forty years away from the Summer of Love
I think there might be more bliss in just slipping
into unconsciousness sans another kiss.

A sigh is supposed to be just a sigh but
a zombie’s bite remains a zombie’s bite, too.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

“Light My Fire” at Wikipedia

Ray Manzarek’s autobiography at Amazon

Shanghai In The Epipelagic Layer

“This Was A Different World”

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

The Empire Of Kimberly’s Innocence

Kimberly is writing an adventure story
about people who get involved with standing stones
and the way the stones echo fallen, lost empires.
Since I mentioned Kimberly last year in a post—
that post and my recent post about standing stones
in fact are what started her writing her story—
she asked me to look at what she’s written so far
and she asked me about some story ideas.

This is the weepy and sad part of this account.

When I mentioned that most Neolithic sites now
may or may not look like what their builders put up
Kimberly looked at me all wide-eyed and said, “What?”

I said, “Yeah, almost all these sites have been ‘restored.’
Most rocks have fallen and the structures have collapsed.
Experts have surveyed most of these sites, rebuilding
the structures the way they believed builders built them.”

Kimberly just kept looking at me all big-eyed.
The New Age books she’d read hadn’t mentioned that stuff.

I showed her the section at Wikipedia
in the ‘Stonehenge’ entry about restorations,
including putting some of the stones on concrete.
And I showed her a Wikipedia entry
about a site in Cornwall where a storm had wrecked
the structure, broke a stone, and locals had rebuilt
the scene as best they could without the broken stone.

Kimberly wasn’t crying but her eyes stayed big.
She said, “I thought these things lasted five thousand years!”

“Yeah, well,” I said, “that’s the romantic view of it.
The poetic view. I mean, the rocks are still rocks.
And at some point in the past somebody really
did assemble these things into cool arrangements.
It’s just not quite as cool as New Age types make it.”

Kimberly looked from me to her notes with big eyes.

I’m wondering now if she’ll finish her story.

Why does an empire collapse? I was there. I watched
the empire of Kimberly’s innocence collapse.
Kimberly’s innocence is gone now, fallen, lost,
like the empires where people built structures of stones.

I’m wondering now if she’ll finish her story.

I hope she does. That’s one of the few things people
do better than rocks: We can get up when knocked down.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Stonehenge - Archaeological research
and restoration at Wikipedia

Lanyon Quoit at Wikipedia

Fallen, Lost Empires

People Become Things: Carreg Samson

Monday, June 07, 2010

Margo Makes Movies That Don’t Get Released

She has recently been in a lot of films, that have not been released for unknown reasons. ... In 2009, she took on a supporting role for the slasher movie remake Sorority Row. Though given limited screentime, she received strong critical acclaim for her performance as Chugs, a hard-partying but fundamentally insecure sorority sister.

Margo Harshman at Wikipedia

Margo makes movies that don’t get released.

I’ve heard “Sorority Row” got released
just because they had Audrina Patridge
playing the girl who dies in the first scene
and business types thought that would sell the film.

And no I didn’t hear that from Margo.

It’s good to get ‘strong critical acclaim’
for portraying a character named “Chugs.”
But I suspect ‘strong critical acclaim’
just means guys like me said, “Hey, that’s Tawny!”

Margo plays guitar. And she’s beautiful.
And she does that Gillian Anderson
acting-without-acting kind of acting
as expressionlessly as Gillian.

I’m not sure what it means when her movies
don’t get released. I hope she won’t get lost,
just another actress eaten alive
by the great white shark constantly feeding
entertainment business content machine.

Jerry Lewis made an unreleased film.
It is a Holocaust story about
a clown and some children in a death camp.
He wants it released, “The Day The Clown Cried.”
Business types say they’ll never release it.

Margo makes movies that don’t get released.

I hope she won’t get lost. I’ve done my part
to keep her present. That is, this blog post.

I’m hoping someday nothing will get lost.

No more lost Atlantis. No more lost songs.

No more people who make things getting lost.

Margo makes movies that don’t get released.

Our part in the larger metaphysics
is to rearrange the local cosmos
so that soon it will be enough to say
just the first three words: Margo makes movies.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

“The Day The Clown Cried” at Wikipedia

Freedom From The Wild

The Occult Technology Of Lost Songs

Friday, June 04, 2010

Shanghai In The Epipelagic Layer


Loves my baby

She gets high

Shanghai, the most populous city on Earth,
is about fourteen hundred miles to the west
of the deepest place, the Mariana Trench,
which at its deepest goes down about five miles.

Five miles is a long way down. If a villain
wanted, for instance, to kill the human race
the villain would not need to fill the ocean
all the way to its bottom, five miles, with oil.
A careful villain would only have to spread
enough oil mixed with dispersant chemicals
to disrupt the epipelagic layer.

Typically that’s just seven hundred feet deep.

That’s where plankton lives. The small plants use sunlight
to fix carbon, that is, remove the carbon
from carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

The people of Shanghai and the rest of us
might not notice if the Mariana Trench
was filled, down five miles, down in the dark, with oil.

But if enough oil and other chemicals
suppress the metabolism of the plants
in the thin, bright epipelagic layer,
the people of Shanghai and the rest of us
will notice the hot air is harder to breath
because smoke from the factories where they make
pretty Apple things and plain old computers
just kind of hangs around with no place to go.

It’s a good thing villains are just a device
writers and artists use for comic book fun.

The people of Shanghai and the rest of us
can breath easy knowing villains aren’t real.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Modern Romance In The Noir

“Perfect In His Generations”

A Shadow Too Dark For Atlantis

Ancient Cities Of The Moon

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Another Jupiter Impact!

Not just one but two veteran planetary imagers caught the shots of a lifetime on June 3rd, when they both videorecorded a tiny, brilliant flare on Jupiter swelling and fading around 20:31 Universal Time. The flare brightened and faded in less than two seconds. Its progress is recorded on many frames of each video.

The flare may have looked small from Earth, but it must have been titanic to be seen at all from Jupiter's distance — and on Jupiter's daylit side. It was presumably the impact of an asteroid or comet nucleus.

Sky & Telescope’s website, 6/3/10

So amateur astronomers have observed another impact of something entering Jupiter’s atmosphere.

It is always dangerous to place emphasis on numbers when the numbers are few and far between, but these numbers are interesting.

The number of observable impacts on Jupiter has changed from none, to once in a lifetime, and then to once every ten years, and now to once every year.

This certainly may be random numbers at work. Or random numbers coupled with more and more amateur astronomers getting good equipment capable of seeing and photographing these impacts.

Or something may have perturbed the asteroid belt or the Kuiper belt and we might be observing a scattering of small objects with Jupiter—as the largest planet in the system—showing the most visible effects of the scattering.

But if something has been perturbed that increases the chances of impacts throughout the solar system.

That would mean the Earth might be more at hazard than expected.

Time and observations and calculations will tell.

If you want to search
for Atlantis, search before
another impact

pushes us farther
away from where it is at.
If you want to sing

a song that was lost,
sing it before an impact
composes a track

of pure percussion
that will be pure crescendo.
It is possible

the cosmic iPod
is an iPod shuffle with
a new song coming.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

The Occult Technology Of Lost Songs

Both Touched By Something

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Persistence Personified

I've been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate,
A poet, a pawn and a king.
I've been up and down and over and out
And I know one thing:
Each time I find myself, flat on my face,
I pick myself up and get back in the race.

That's life
I tell ya, I can't deny it,
I thought of quitting baby,
But my heart just ain't gonna buy it.
And if I didn't think it was worth one single try,
I'd jump right on a big bird and then I'd fly

That’s Life

This is the schedule for Thursday at the French Open tennis tournament in Paris. Play starts at 7am Chicago time:

It’s Elena Dementieva in the semifinal.

Elena is my favorite tennis player. I’ve written about her before, even did a cartoon about her: Elena Called A Let

Elena is a very frustrating player to be a fan of because although she can play, on occasion, better than any woman on the planet, she breaks down mentally in big situations and crumbles. She goes to pieces. In pressure situations she often doesn’t just play badly, she plays awful. Embarrassing.

But I can’t not be her fan because she always “picks herself up and gets back in the race.” She goes from a humiliating loss on this or that center court with the world watching and somehow doesn’t let it defeat her mentally, doesn’t let it drive her to retirement, but continues playing. And she plays great—until she gets into some pressure situation.

But she doesn’t quit.

This is powerful stuff for me because I make a fool out of myself almost daily and sometimes I find it very hard to do that “pick myself up” bit and get back into the race and keep trying.

But one of the things that’s always on my mind when I want to quit is how Elena Dementieva doesn’t quit, and how she manages to keep re-climbing the same mountain and getting herself another chance at greatness. And when she fucks it up, she doesn’t let that stop her from getting back in the game and forcing herself into another chance at greatness.

She is my favorite sports person. I think I admire persistence more than anything else in the world and Elena Dementieva is persistence personified.

Thursday in Paris Elena will try to get back to the finals of the French Open. (She’s been to the finals before. Her performance was, to put it kindly, ugly.)

But this year is very different for her.

There are no other Russians left in the draw. When Russian women play other Russian women the mental pressures become almost unbearable for them.

There are no other players who have accomplished anything near what Elena has accomplished. When Russian women play someone who has proven themself in pressure situations the mental pressures become almost unbearable for them.

But this year Elena Dementieva is in a perfect situation mentally.

No Russians. Good players around her but nobody who has anything like her results.

Unless the pressure of having no pressure becomes too much pressure for her, this should be Elena Dementieva’s year to win a Grand Slam.

I will be watching—and probably yelling at the TV set during the whole match.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Addendum 11am Chicago Time:

Elena Dementieva stuns Roland Garros by pulling out of semi-final

“I make a fool out of myself almost daily” — There you go. I devote a whole post to Elena. I pick her to win the tournament. And she withdraws from the match without even attempting a second set. She fucks up another opportunity. And I check off yet another incident of making a fool out of myself. Hey. That’s life! (That’s certainly my life!)

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

A Shadow Too Dark For Atlantis

... Next, the so-called "nuclear option" is about to get a lot of attention. In this case, of course, nuclear option is not a euphemism. It's the real idea that the best way to kill this thing is to stick a small nuke in there and bury the well under rubble. Supposedly it's been done in Russia, and by the middle of the coming week, it will be all over cable news, as pundits press The White House hard on whether it's being considered and why not.

Joe Weisenthal, 5/29/10, The Business Insider

... One prominent energy expert known for predicting the oil price spike of 2008 says sending a small nuclear bomb down the leaking well is "probably the only thing we can do" to stop the leak.

Matt Simmons, founder of energy investment bank Simmons & Company, also says that there is evidence of a second oil leak about five to seven miles from the initial leak that BP has focused on fixing. That second leak, he says, is so large that the initial one is "minor" in comparison.

Daniel Tencer, 05/29/10, The Raw Story

... Complaints from many liberal organizations were met with long confidential discussions, and representatives were taken on trips to certain camps and prisons. As a result, these societies became surprisingly passive and reticent. Newspaper men were harder to manage, but seemed largely to cooperate with the government in the end. Only one paper - a tabloid always discounted because of its wild policy - mentioned the deep diving submarine that discharged torpedoes downward in the marine abyss just beyond Devil Reef. That item, gathered by chance in a haunt of sailors, seemed indeed rather far-fetched; since the low, black reef lay a full mile and a half out from Innsmouth Harbour.

The Shadow Over Innsmouth at Wikipedia

H. P. Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth

This is a type of sailboat called a “Nonsuch 30.” It is very much an East Coast design for a sailboat, with a hull shape derived from classic American workboats called ‘catboats,’ but updated with a modern keel and a high-tech free-standing mast equipped with a simple yet efficient wishbone boom. These boats have been in production since the late 1970s and they have proven very seaworthy and have generated tremendous devotion from sailing enthusiasts. As thirty-foot yachts go, the Nonsuch is not particularly expensive. If I sold a manuscript or generated a reasonable amount of money through this or that supervillain scheme I would buy a Nonsuch.

As if The Shadow Over Innsmouth sank down

and disappeared with the people it altered

but now is spilling up through a ten-inch bore

and who knows what cracks in the rocks next to it

into our world in the Gulf of Mexico

or what we have been thinking of as our world

but now a shadow from long ago is back

darkening this world making this world its own

and if carefully designed East Coast sailboats

want to sail the Atlantic Circle searching

for old Atlantis they’d better set sail soon

because the old darkness of the Great Old Ones

is changing things claiming things and Atlantis

might not want us changed transhumans to find it

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Transhumanism at Wikipedia

Sleeping Beauty

Is This A Junkyard Church

Industrial Landscape, Industrial Decay, Jazz

Modern Romance In The Noir

The Occult Technology Of Lost Songs