Thursday, July 28, 2005

basquiat/rollercoasters

nothing makes a good weekend like mid 80's expressionist art and enormous, strap your balls to a V2 rocket roller-fucking-coasters. it didn't hurt either that i got to do both with a girl who is cultured but not conceited and hedonistic but not so much that she doesn't make a great house-guest.

basquiat

the first thing that the strokes and scrawls of a basquiat conjures in my mind is an old episode of law & order. probably because those old episodes are all that a callow fuck like myself knows about the new york of that era. (actually, those episodes are from the late 80's) unlike the new episodes, new york looks old, dirty and ready to fuck you with a knife for a gram of crack. everyone is either a working stiff, homeless, addicted to drugs or so rich that you want to fucking choke them with their thousand dollar suit. almost all of those old episodes (or the good ones anyway) dealt with racism in some way. they made new york out to be a prime candidate for the first battle ground of a new civil war. also, all the cases were solved in one hour. miraculous.

it's probably points out too well how little i know about art or the new york art scene in the 80's when i compare jean michel basquiat's work to a long running cop drama. but hey, i'm a child of a cathode ray god (i wonder if plasma screen would have made me smarter) and that's the first thing i thought of. what really struck me after that first comparison was the raw emotion, the rage, that he was trying to lay down on canvas. i tried to reserve judgement about what i saw to be a lack of skill in his work, though i couldn't help thinking "i could paint a better figure holding the brush in my ass". what i knew i couldn't do however, was evoke the feelings of a young black man living in the whoever-owns-the-most-wins 1980's where the chasm between the rich and poor, black and white, seemed greater than ever. i couldn't possibly bring whatever artistic talents i have to bear on hundreds of years of oppression, slavery, bigotry and violence against black people (i wonder how much he knew of his haitian ancestors uprising?). but, basquiat does just that with his almost childlike scrawls and figures.

one thing i didn't like very much was his (over)use of the written word. some pieces contain more words than anything else. some of them used the words to create a texture and feeling, but most of the time i was just distracted by them-- i have a compulsion to read everything i see. the words were most effective when they were used sparingly or seemed to title the work with a fatalistic humor, or when they became a design element and not something that needed to be read. i did however like the symbology that ran through his work, the most prominent being the crown, which made his seemingly downtrodden gutter-trash into a pharoah. i most liked his work when it was all color and form with no words to distract me.

i should show some basquiat to my little brother. then he could see that even he has a chance to hang in a museum one day (he just has a to be a self-righteous son-of-a-bitch).

six flags

i was read to be severely disappointed at six flags. i had pictured myself standing in a line so long that i actually would have to leave my house and drive away from the park to get to the end. i would be surrounded by mewling, snotty, sticky little fuckers who would incessantly whine and nag their blank-eyed, overweight, fanny pack wearing mother for two hour while the line slowly crept up the the ride. luckily it wasn't all that bad. in fact, it was awesome.

six flags has way too many cool rides. we were there for six hours and we only managed to ride about 75% of the rollercoasters. we rode 8 coasters in all, but i'll just give the highlights:

superman: the escape. i'm not sure what's with the weird subtitle on this ride. what exactly is it an escape from? krypton? the fortress of solitude? no idea. despite it's stupid name, superman is great. it's one of those linear induction coasters, so i knew that it starts off really fast. the batman and robin ride at the six flags in jersey is like that. but, i had no idea how fast. it's the only roller coaster i've ever been on that made me scream in the first second it started. the acceleration was incredible, as was shooting straight up into the air at the end of the track and feeling a moment of weightlessness before plummeting back down backwards. the thing sounds like a fucking jet plane take off from the outside.

goliath. holy. fuck. another one with a dumb name. it's big... let's name it goliath. but it's still a great coaster. according the announcement (which played about 6 times before we got on the ride) goliath has a 255 ft. drop and reaches speeds of 85mph. when you're up there though it feels more like a drop of "fucking shit we're gonna die!" ft. and speeds of "my intestines are in the parking lot"ph. it combines the best aspects of the great, big wooden coasters with and the sleeker metal coasters. hell yeah!

end.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

techno-shock

(note: i need to modify this blog so it looks all fruity like i prefer)
(also: capital letters are for pussies and the british)

i just finished viewing the unaired global frequency pilot, based on the comic of the same name by warren ellis (which i pirated using a torrent client). it was very good. how good? it's comparable to the first couple of seasons of alias. if you want the hollywood pitch for it: it's mission:impossible meets alias meets flashmob. it's so good, in part, because of how close the creators stuck to the source material. the comic was already written like a one hour tv script (45 min. with commercials). the first issue ends with a two page denuoment (how do i add accent marks?) with the title and credits. i would love to see it made into a regular series (help out fuckers). each story in the series is self-contained, so it lends itself nicely to an episodic format (not to mention the potential for a bevy of guest stars).

what i found most interesting after reading the entire series is that the overarching theme is that, in general, our ability to responsibly handle new technology does not keep apace of the creation of such new technologies. it's also about how our insular governments, corporations, and intelligence groups (cia, nsa, etc.) are a potential threat because their secretive nature and acces to resources allows them to create potential doomsday devices with out anyone (even members of their own government or agency) knowing about it. the only way to combat these threats is a 21st century crisis team like the GB, that eschews the old organizational model in favor of one that's more like the open source software of counter-intelligence and rescue (though running through central data network of aleph and the leadership of miranda zero). the GB is a portrayal of what something like flashmob could be if it wasn't all twits staging random pillow fights.

this brings me to my next point... i was having lunch with my uncle dave, who's in from out of town with his gf, my cousin rana, and my girlfriend at a thai place in glendale. that's not the important part though. i was sitting at the table, facing the door, eating my pad thai noodles and staring emptily at a man standing by the cash register. then something snapped me out of my inattention; he was wearing on of those wireless bluetooth earpieces. i had a moment of what i could only describe as techno-shock or future shock.

i have seen those earpieces before but, for some reason, i was struck by how commonplace such an amazing technology had become. thoughts about modern cyborgs, the vast amounts of information available at my fingertips when i turn on my computer and the absolute irrelevancy of all of it washed over me. i've often complained to my peers (drunken layabouts), that when i was in elementary school, my scholastic reader told me that by the year 2000 we would all have flying cars. that was nearly 20 years ago and people are still driving gas-guzzling shitboxes. where is my goddamn flying fucking car!!! (<- extra exclamation points means i'm pissed)

why is it, that when these new technologies are developed, instead of using them to create a better human race, we turn them into very expensive toys? this chubby, slightly vacant looking guy i saw in the thai restaurant has more computing and information exchange power resting in his fuzzy little ear than the entire world had 40 years ago, and i don't think that will ever cross his mind. he probably uses just to say "what's up?" to his friends or text his internet buddies to plan their next LAN party.

anyway, this was shaping up to be a much longer rant, but i have to head home from work, and i don't feel like saving this for later.

so, my point is:

we have amazing technologies which could create, if not a utopian... then maybe a better world. so think about that the next time you turn on your pc, or flip open your cell phone or take a digital picture or plug your usb vagina into your imac. think about what your toys could be doing if they weren't just toys.

soul sucking slugs

i woke up at 6:47am. no alarm, no outside noise, no ice cold water splashed in my face. my body now wakes me up at this ungodly hour because i have been waking up before 7am for more than three months now. i hate it. i hate it so much that i stayed in bed another half hour just to spite myself.

i'm at work now. i turned on my computer (it's actually someone else's computer, but he's out of town) and the first thing i notice is that my boss' username is on the log-in field. i open 'er up and then i notice that the history window is open in firefox. i guess the ol' manager has noticed that i spend very little time doing my work here. that's not to say i don't get all my work done, because i do, it's just that i only get the minimum done. i would be more worried about the fact that my employer has taken notice of my contrary-to-the-employee-handbook activities, but i don't really care. all i have to do is last three more weeks and i can apply for medical and dental benefits with motion picture health plan. then i'm going to get a new hip for $28, just 'cause i can. so... i guess it's time to be a little more sneaky in my internet roamings. and i should probably remove my bit-torrent client from the computer too (i really want that pilot episode of global frequency though).

speaking of warren ellis (who is a hairy man), i subscribed to his e-mail list and i got the first message yesterday:
bad signal
WARREN ELLIS

Something that just occurred to me: is this list pretty much
US-Style-centric? Are there a lot of manga readers on the
list?

Are there (broad definition) "manga-style" artists on the list?

Just curious. With the various twists and turns my work
has taken within the American business over the last
several years, and with the turns the US business has taken
in the last 18 months (some of which are only just becoming
visible to those outside the business), I kinda wonder who's
reading...

-- W
to which i replied:

i love mangos.
especially mango salsa on fish.

yum.

~cb~
when he sent out the list of responses... mine was numero uno! suck on that all you people who sent real answers! see, you don't have to try hard to be successful. just be a wise-ass like me.



Friday, July 22, 2005

#1

bloggity blog blog.

i only got this blog because i am now obsessed with all things that google will give me. google earth rules. i'm just waiting for the new google blowjob. GBJ will be the best thing on the internet ever.

my old blog is over at www.deadjournal.com/users/superhappyboy

faggots.

oh, i'm going into the t-shirt business. i've had one customer so far. the money is just rollin' in.

i'm still looking for that big bag of money (an idea that i stole from alex d. thomson). i'm keeping an eye out though, for that big sac with the green dollar sign on it.

anyway... i've been listening to a whole lot of public radio, mostly because i broke most of my cds and i don't have computer speakers (send me some). i like npr... it makes me calm... it's a little like weed, except it doesn't make me crave flavor blasted goldfish and wawa peach iced tea.

i slept like a baby last night (for about 4 hours), and i had a dream. i can only remember snippets (as is usual with dreams). but, i distinctly remember that i dreamed that the london police found that one of the main ingredients in the tube and bus bombs was artificial coffee creamer. i hear that shit burns like a motherfucker. juan valdez pwns my dreams.