File under this shit has gone too far. As a severely underpaid teacher, I find it laughable that we are now the evil force behind the economic crisis. In a way, I hope Wall St. keeps pushing on this. I don’t think people will bend much further.
Incidentally, I read somewhere that folks in the UK are holding teach-ins at banks by entering and holding classes inside their lobbies.
These days you can’t trust anything on the net, so the story of a new sex Robot that also spews 9/11 conspiracy theory sounds too much like a viral prank. So let this be my disclaimer. Meanwhile, watch the video and judge for yourself. The conspiracy sex talk comes in after the second minute. No doubt this will put a bump in my Web hits.
As for the cultural analysis, well let’s see.. porn, conspiracy, sex with robots. Pretty straight forward if you ask me.
As evidenced by the mounds of lost blog subscribers of late, I know I’ve been a downer. My Cassandra-phase is the result of all my research into the dark side of the Industrial-Scientific Revolution which has caused me to see more readily destructive thought patterns in our popular culture. With that said, I’d like to pause from all the Sybil-like posts and share with you something fun. This short animation is about a very funny moment in baseball history. Enjoy!
OK, so you know I quibble with Stephen Hawking’s mechanical view of the universe (who is featured in the above video), but I still love Carl Sagan (more prominently featured), and have very fond memories of his old TV program, Cosmos. I’m well aware that I have been a bit of a downer lately, but blogging lets me process what I’m feeling about the world, and hence I’ve been on the downside of the optimism scale of late. Anyhow, to switch gears, this autotune mash-up of Sagan is a wonderfully positive song. It actually makes me feel good about being human living in this universe.
The only truly alien planet is Earth. — J. G. Ballard
Peopleofwalmart.com is a funny and snarky site. It may even be a putdown. But for me, despite all the horrible things we know about Walmart the business, I truly find beauty in the images of the people of Walmart. It demonstrates that despite the homogenizing influence of giant corporations, people’s freak nature remains strong. In this I find hope that the primeval being within all of us remains resilient, even in Walmart.
From the about page:
Let’s face it; we all have seen the people who obviously don’t have mirrors and/or family and friends to lock them in a basement, and they all seem to congregate at Walmart. It’s not everywhere that you can shop for milk at 10 a.m. next to a 400lb mother of 6 wearing a pink tube top, leopard tights, and hooker heels. Where else can one go to pick up underwear at 3 O’clock in the afternoon and spot the greatest mullet of all time paired with a mustard stained wife beater (which only accents the extreme amount of body hair) and camo pants that were actually used in Vietnam. And if you haven’t run into the 6’2” bull-dyke with a shaved head, rockin a wonder bra, flannel cutoff shirt, and jean shorts at 2 a.m. when you’re there to pick up frozen pizza, chips, and cookies, then you can get the fuck out right now.
Imagine playing in a band in which you don’t know the other musicians, the producer or the final product. ThruYOU is a fascinating project where producer Kutiman mined YouTube for bedroom jam sessions and then edited them into coherent songs. This is a perfect metaphor for emergent social practices that involve disparate people doing what they know and love best, but then through a creative process of evolution they combine into new forms previously unknown.
(Be sure to check out the site, there are over 8 videos. Track 3, “I’m New,” is posted above.)
The fact is that the world is divided between users of the Macintosh computer and users of MS-DOS compatible computers. I am firmly of the opinion that the Macintosh is Catholic and that DOS is Protestant. Indeed, the Macintosh is counter-reformist and has been influenced by the ratio studiorum of the Jesuits. It is cheerful, friendly, conciliatory; it tells the faithful how they must proceed step by step to reach — if not the kingdom of Heaven — the moment in which their document is printed. It is catechistic: The essence of revelation is dealt with via simple formulae and sumptuous icons. Everyone has a right to salvation.
DOS is Protestant, or even Calvinistic. It allows free interpretation of scripture, demands difficult personal decisions, imposes a subtle hermeneutics upon the user, and takes for granted the idea that not all can achieve salvation. To make the system work you need to interpret the program yourself: Far away from the baroque community of revelers, the user is closed within the loneliness of his own inner torment.
I bought Sesame Street Old School for my daughter (OK, it was for me too!), which has brought back some curious memories. Disc one has an interesting video that was made to pitch the show, explaining how the makers studied advertising to build their little one-minute segments. I was particularly enthralled with the video posted above, “Capital I in the Sky,” which is a trippy, neo-psychadelic folk tune that one might find in the underground film circuit. It reinforces my theory that media makes Americans weird, not brainwashed. No wonder we became punks!