Oh boy I’m having another non-starter day. Should be ploughing on with the assignment writing but cannot get up the steam. Like a coffee pot on a little open fire that’s just not hot enough. Like that.

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I’ve been watching music docos partly for fun but also partly to try to help get up motivation with the writing. I watched the BBC’s ‘the seven ages of Rock’. I happened to see one episode of it while back in australia. It was good, especially the first two parts, about the mid-sixties, and then early 70s and glam rock. Very interesting to find a little more about Roxy Music. It’s so cool that Bryan Ferry and Brian Eno were once in the same band. Looking back from this time, it seems so unlikely, and that’s why it’s cool. D/L’d their first (self titled) album and found it very distinctive. I even a little bit liked some of Ferry’s later, solo stuff, but back on these first two albums have got such a great mash of his classic voice and Eno’s little flourishes of weirdness.

The doco series also did Punk: ok, heavy metal: also ok (Black Sabbath were really cool) Stadium Rock: Freddy Mercury was cool, Grunge & alternative (focused a bit too much on Nirvana) and ended with English Indie: ok, but because it’s so recent I bet it’ll look a bit out of place in a few years.

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Also been watching a few films – no theme. _Solyaris_ (1972). The original, Russian version of a film that was hollywood-remade in recent years. This is the second stalinist-era russian film I’ve seen in two months, and man, do they move slow. This would’ve been easier to watch if I hadn’t accidentally seen the american version some time recently.

_Napoleon Dynamite_  Now I understand the ‘vote for Pedro’ t-shirts I’ve seen on the internet.

_A Boy and His Dog_ (1975). Post-apocalypse. I bet Don Johnson wishes he never went in on this one.

_Der Untergang_  (2004) That’s german for ‘downfall’. Illustrates the last days of the third Reich. Surprisingly good. Although it didn’t really portray Hitler as the ultra-speed freak that he was. He did have a bit of a wrist twitch going though. Lots of little subtle moments and glances in this that’d be lost on the Cineplex audience. The guy who played Goebbels pretty much stole the show, he was such a scary-lookin’ motherfucker, with a completely fanatical wife. It was partly told through the eyes of a woman who worked as Hitler’s secretary, and the film started and ended with short commentaries by _the real_ woman portrayed. That really brought home how recent it is, as did the info at the end of how a lot of the Nazi upper hierarchy lived out their days and when they died — some not so long ago.

_The Quiet Earth_ (1985) Kiwi depopulated world situation, sadly marred by an annoying love-triangle.

_Mega Shark vs. Giant Octopus_ (2009).  Wow. This makes an episode of McGuyver look professional and believable. Classic scene was when the mega-shark jumped out of the water and snatched a commercial passenger airliner out of the sky. Top marks for imagination on that one.


My buddy, pirooz, helped make a film last year in America. When poor people want to make a film in Australia, they go to the Australian Film Commission, and they give the people. Unfortunately this results in some really boring films, like <a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dimboola_%28film%29″>Dimboola</a>. In America, either you save up the money yourself, or some rich benefactor gives you money because your film idea is so awesome that it is sure to be successful, or you use lots of credit cards.

So if you want to help out a struggling film that’s already been made but hasn’t been paid for, you could do a lot worse than going over to <a href=”http://humanwarmovie.blogspot.com/2010/03/funding-latest-news.html”>The Human War</a> and checking it out, or if time is tight, just go straight to donating <a href=”https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=9738508″>here</a>.

mclovin it

I watched _Superbad_ (2007) last night and I have to say it was one of the funniest things I’ve seen in ages. The two boy love relationship was nice — in the beginning I thought they were going to over-do it but it did a pretty good job of showing a lifelike friendship. Also good to see that this kind of movie could be done without it being derogatory toward women.

But the show-stealer was Fogell/McLovin. Great character! The two cops were uh a bit unrealistic but they propelled McLovin to the lulz.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnybreaks/4425665569/” title=”organdonor by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4028/4425665569_ee9bf732d5.jpg” width=”417″ height=”266″ alt=”organdonor” /></a>

<sup>[<a href=”http://palgolak.blogspot.com/2009_10_01_archive.html”>soorse</a>]</sup>

Amber Lamps

_(written last sat. nite)_

I’ve been thinking a lot about amber lamps today. I wish that instead of having to do one monolithic thesis for the master’s’ that I could do smaller, loosely connected nodes on things that are current and interesting. I got tired of the idea of a grunge thesis about a year ago.

I’d like to unpack the amber lamps meme. I must admit that the first time I watched ‘fatnigger’s’ utoob clip I was mainly paying attention but did note in passing the girl on the seat in the background and that she did not react or move away from the fight. Perhaps it’s the case that fights on buses are so common in the USA that this was for the most part, the unremarkable part of the video. However, by-standers who are not easily phased, I take it, are rare.

I can identify with amber lamps. I too am non-interventionist, even to a fault some would say. “how can you just stand there and say nothing yakky?” they say. But everything will work out the way it’s meant to. Was that what amber lamps was thinking?

I want to get an amber lamps t-shirt if there is one. I’m sure there is.

PS. They played the rock and roll animal version of sweet Jane at starbucks. I haven’t heard that album in years. I’m at starbucks because cafe Benny was full.

Anger. Rage in america is another issue. Epic beard guy was feelin it. This seems fairly typical of many Americans I’ve seen. It’d be easy to interpret it negatively. As if it’s epic beard guy’s weakness. But I’ve learnt that it’s a positive sign to be able to express anger. Even when it seems to be conveyed poorly it is still moving in right direction. And that’s the main point. It’s on the way to somewhere. Somewhere better.

swiss watch

You know I was going to say that as far as music goes, the two-zeroes pretty much sucked. Aphex twin quit it and Amon Tobin only had a few albums in the early part. There wasn’t anything else good.

But this decade is off to a good start. I like the rhyming in this and I like the way it came about.

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Related video <a href=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L35QuznMon0″>here</a>.

Although, <a href=”http://bandcamp.com/”>bandcamp</a> is a cool idea too. It’s like myspace, but the webpage design is infinitely better. And it’s not owned by rupert murdoch, yet. The challenge is sorting the wheat from the chaff because there’s about a zillion artists on there. I guess someone could make a blog that did it, but you’d have to have all day to sit around and listen to new music.

I started from the back, alphabetically. I even paid $2 for zoos of berlin’s 3 songs, lending evidence to the argument that if you only have to pay a small amount then you’re more likely to pay than gets in for frees. But most people are giving it away for free there. And I found that a lot of people are into retro-electro, and that the thing that really makes an artist is a good singing voice because there aren’t that many of them.

Here’s a couple that I like:

<object classid=”clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000″ width=”400″ height=”100″ ><param name=”movie” value=”http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer.swf/track=395842887/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/” /><param name=”quality” value=”high” /><param name=”allowScriptAccess” value=”never” /><param name=”allowNetworking” value=”always” /><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent” /><param name=”bgcolor” value=”#FFFFFF” /><embed src=”http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer.swf/track=395842887/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/” width=”400″ height=”100″ type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” pluginspage=”http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer” quality=high allowScriptAccess=never allowNetworking=always wmode=transparent bgcolor=#FFFFFF ></embed><noembed><a href=”http://progresselectro.bandcamp.com/track/sleaze”>Sleaze by Progress</a></noembed></object>

<object classid=”clsid:D27CDB6E-AE6D-11cf-96B8-444553540000″ width=”400″ height=”100″ ><param name=”movie” value=”http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer.swf/track=3821215333/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/” /><param name=”quality” value=”high” /><param name=”allowScriptAccess” value=”never” /><param name=”allowNetworking” value=”always” /><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent” /><param name=”bgcolor” value=”#FFFFFF” /><embed src=”http://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer.swf/track=3821215333/size=venti/bgcol=FFFFFF/linkcol=4285BB/” width=”400″ height=”100″ type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” pluginspage=”http://www.macromedia.com/go/getflashplayer” quality=high allowScriptAccess=never allowNetworking=always wmode=transparent bgcolor=#FFFFFF ></embed><noembed><a href=”http://zvukbroda.bandcamp.com/track/odu”>Odu by zvukbroda</a></noembed></object>

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Also, why wasn’t the Taiwanese earthquake that happened yesterday in the news hardly at all? Three serious earthquakes in two months. Do the news people think the audience are tired of earthquake stories?  I think there is something seriously unusual going on with the planet.

parting the red sea

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnybreaks/4405451178/” title=”IMG_4944 by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4051/4405451178_9b593f7f29.jpg” width=”500″ height=”375″ alt=”IMG_4944″ /></a>

These are sad times because my plants are dying. I entrusted them with a coworker during my time away. I’d had them four years or more. The chances of them reviving are about the same as that of some dude splitting a sea in two.

I’ve been watching 1950s epics with charleton Heston in them. Ben Hur was pretty cool. Must have had a huge budget for it’s time. I liked how it had the alternate viewpoint of history angle going, at least in the first part. It would’ve been better if they’d just had that bit where jesus is giving charleton some water, but then not crossed paths with the biblical stuff again. There was some good bits of scoring in the soundtrack too. Also pretty cool that Frank Thring got to be Pilate.

A little more cheesy was _The Ten Commandments_. This is probably the most memorable scene:

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnybreaks/4405482080/” title=”redsea by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2705/4405482080_a365ef9fa5.jpg” width=”500″ height=”279″ alt=”redsea” /></a>

But I liked the bit where charleton had just come back down from talking with the burning bush.

Joshua: Whoa Moses, nice blow wave. Who did?

Moses: The Hand of God held the hair dryer that blew this wave.

Sephora: Sage.

<a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunnybreaks/4404718311/” title=”blowwave by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2780/4404718311_52e14871af.jpg” width=”500″ height=”287″ alt=”blowwave” /></a>

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I’m trying to start my masters thesis. I don’t know where the apostrophe should go there. And I don’t know where to start. 20,000 words is a lot.