December 2003 Archives

Buenos dias from Mazatlan, where the town hall (and the Christmas tree municipale) is brought to you by Coca Cola. Vivela!

As Choire and Xeni showed us yesterday, this is the season to get all worked up over film stories that actually took place many months ago.

I invite you all to familiarize yourselves with the International Cinema program at BYU, where, as a manager-projectionist-student lackey, I found my love for movies and my desire to make them myself one day.

In the nuevo ano, I will address what is being called a ®minor turmoil® that has ensued over my April 2003 discussion of the Cinema Paradiso-style editing of films that rendered foreign films suitable for BYU community viewing.

Day 1 Cruise Index:
Length of ship, in feet: 915
Decks accessible to passengers: 9
Number of passengers, est.: 2,500
Number of teenagers: 250
Number of children: 250
Average poolside temperature at sea on, in degrees farenheit: 67
Number of books carried around: 2,000
Random airport titles: 500
Copies of the new translation of Don Quixote: 1
Copies of David Foster Wallace's A Supposedly Funny Thing I'll Never Do Again: 0
Copies of David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest: 0
Copies of Thomas Pynchon's Mason & Dixon: 2 [!!]
Copies of Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code: 1,496
Copies of The Da Vinci Code reported stolen from an unattended deck chair: 1
Price of a Diet Coke, either in a can or a glass: $1.50
Glasses of Diet Coke in a can: 2
Price of a cruise-long Coke Pass, which allows consumption of unlimited fountain drinks, including 15% gratuity: $37.95
Glasses of Diet Coke I must consume daily to make my Coke Pass cost-effective: 8.42
Estimated percentage of cruise spent walking back and forth to the bar and/or bathroom: 20
Daily wage of a cruise ship pool attendant: $18
Equivalent daily wage in Diet Cokes: 12
Equivalent daily wage in Yummy Yummy Mango Tango's, a rum concoction designated as the Drink of The Day: 3
Fee paid to employment agent to secure job: $1,000
Months of work required to pay back agent's fee: 2
Length of contract, in months: 6
Days off during contract: 0
Ranking among pool attendants of Christmas Day for the loneliest days of the year: 1
Year The Nation magazine began sponsoring cruises for its readers: 1998

Just ask Dharma. According to the Formula, you can have only one creatively named character per sitcom. Fortunately, Wired Magazine articles have no such limit. And so, in this month's wacky episode edition, Choire and Xeni team up to report on NYC Midnight, a DV Dojo -sponsored contest to write, shoot, and edit a film in New York, all in 24 hours.

What's that, the contest was in October? And it started in May with a rewritten press release on Daily Candy? So Choire and Xeni had to sit on this great story for months, at least until the damn check cleared? That's magazine publishing for you. I'd call it tired, but it's the end of the year; everything's tired.

December 28, 2003

the crew are on their ...

the crew are on their cells till the last possible minute of signal & the coast guard is doing orange alert laps around us as port recedes. Hasta

December 28, 2003

im on a cruise ship to cabo

Follow along by reading DFW's "a supposedly funny thing i'll never do again " with me.

December 27, 2003

Taxi Music v.1

On my way out of the city, I asked the taxi driver if he had a tape instead of listening to the radio. Not only did he have a tape, he had a huge shopping bag of mix tapes and a veritable doctoral thesis on African music.

The best music in all of Africa, he said, is in Mali. He's from Ghana himself, but even the Ghanaians have to admit Mali is the best. The tape we had in at the moment was a mix of tracks by Toumani DiabatÈ and Ballake Sissoko. DiabatÈ is the "prince of the kora, a 21-string harp/lute combo. (His father, Sidiki DiabatÈ is the king of the kora and Sissoko's father Djelimadi is also a kora master.) New Ancient Strings is a collaboration of these two sons.

I'm in the backseat, frantically taking notes on my computer-printed boarding pass while this professor of afropop explains the nuances and development of afropop music. I'll add more when I get back in front of my own computer, but the encounter rekindled a project I'd begun several years ago but abandoned: (It started as, but then I let the domain expire.)

I'd been in the habit of asking taxi drivers wherever I went if they had a tape we could listen to. The response was almost always the same: "you don't want to listen to it; it's ______ (Punjabi, Urdu, Island, Ethiopian) music," followed by my standard reply, "But where else can I hear ______ music, except in a taxi?" Then the floodgates would open on an enthusiastic explanation of what the music means. ("She loves the boy but cannot meet him." "This is the Koran; it's a prayer." etc.) Somewhere in our storage unit is a shopping bag of my own, full of tapes I bought from taxi drivers over the years before weblogs and winamp.

Well, I'm back in the habit again. So if anyone has an easy solution for ripping cassette-to-mp3, please let me know, because it seems like high time to build some bridges with the guy in the front seat and share some great music. Happy new year.

[update: even with my kumbaya ending, thanks for all your comments and suggestions. I'm going to take this project back from the lazyweb as soon as I get back from this goofball cruise I'm on.]

December 24, 2003

In orange alert

taking belligerent drunks off a diverted plane is now the FBI's job. Not the entertainment exper. Song is hoping for, surely. Song nerd: don't call me Shirley.

December 24, 2003

JAP to-do list

1. alienate everyone in speed dial list
2. alienate everyone around me on plane
3. do nails.

hint: after 2am, combine 2+3

December 24, 2003

the crap crappiest TV

BBC America, TLC, HGTV, A&E...Some ATL suit at Song: gimme all those channels with cheap-ass makeover shows

December 24, 2003

Sample cell conv. II:

But I'm your daughter! And I'm stuck on a ----ing plane in ----ing Denver!! (pause) Hello?

December 24, 2003

Sample cell conv.

I had to check my duffle bag. (pause) But you know I hate checking my Louis. (pause) The graffiti gets all ----ed up. (pause) Noooo, it's like paint.

The biggest jap on the island is whining into her cell phone about our diverted flight. She sounds like a 5 hr episode of behind the velvet ropes.

December 23, 2003

next year in Las Vegas

I'm like the only gentile on the plane. For jews on Xmas, Las Vegas is the new chinese food.

7:58PM huh. I am stuck on the new JFK AirTrain, 50 feet away from my terminal. Oh, and the seats are very shabbily upholstered, puckering after just one week. Needed: more Eurostar, less Ikea.

December 21, 2003

Separated at Birth?

It used to be spelled with a Q, image: Rosa Parks, image: Life mag, via somewhere on AOL

Reunited at the millinery, now seated side by side
on the War-For-Peace bus (in the front, of course)

Funny, now I'm more at risk of getting sued than of getting killed in a German bar.

and finding La JetÈe starting that instant on Sundance Channel.

It's a little happiness, anyway. Of course, it's also a happiness you can rent. Or buy.

December 18, 2003

On Cycling

Over at Modern Art Notes, Tyler Green has solicited Art Top Ten lists from some folks, partly as a rebuttal to the too-hip-for-him lists in Artforum. [He reserves his best Ike Turner for Thelma Golden, who I like very much.] Anyway, my list is up now. Most of it is culled from the site, so fanatic readers [Mom, I'm talking to you] will probably not be shocked by any of it.

But I did surprise myself with one choice: I felt obliged to put the Guggenheim's Friday marathon screenings of The Cremaster Cycle on my list. [I mean, I survived it, didn't I?] But then I actually got choked up reading David Edelstein's account of Trilogy Tuesday, the marathon screening of Lord of The Rings.

Granted, not everyone is going to thrill to the point of life-defining religious fervor when they see Return of The King (I'm not really much of a fan myself), but by any standard, LOTR must be considered a far more important, influential, and authentic achievement than Cremaster. And that's before and after adjusting for budgets.

[via Gothamist] Jimmy Orr, the Choire Sicha to George Bush's Nick Denton, has posted his new short film, Barney Cam II: Barney Reloaded, on his weblog, Elizabeth Bumiller, the Times' specialist on the dependent film industry, gives it a glowing review and talks with Orr, who co-produced Barney II with Bob deServi. DeServi is best known for his work as the key grip on many of Scott Sforza's productions, which are being shown on TV everywhere, all the time, on every channel.

Scott Orr films Barney II with what looks like a Sony VX-2000, Magic Hour? Scott Orr demonstrates his handheld video technique in the making of Barney Cam II. Image: Paul Morse,

Like Elephant director Gus Van Sant, Orr prefers working with non-professional actors (although it doesn't seem like he budgeted much time for rehearsals). He's got a scrappy, run-and-gun style which constrasts sharply with Sforza's theatrically staged fictions.

As these behind-the-scenes shots reveal, Orr also scorns the debilitatingly large budgets favored by his White Housemates. His equipment package and crew are strictly barebones: a Sony VX-2000 (good, but not Combat Camera good), with a camera-mounted mic feeding into the XLR adapter (no sound guy) and using only available lighting. Of course, none of this is unexpected; compensating for a small package is a recurring theme on Orr's site.

Also screening at
Secretary Evans Reads "Cowboy Night Before Christmas" [Commerce Secretary Donald Evans, FYI]
Mrs. Bush Reads "Angelina's Christmas"

Ungrateful criticism of diServi and Sforza by their star actor
Bumiller's first review of Scott Sforza and Bob diServi productions.

December 16, 2003

Combat Camera

Finally, someone's asking the right questions in Iraq, like, "how'd they get that shot?" Virginia Heffernan reports in the Times on the ultimate embeds: the soldiers who go into battle armed with digital video cameras ("the camera is our first weapon") to record US military activity. Like Saddam Hussein's medical checkup, which includes shots--like the glowing underside of Hussein's tongue--that Heffernan rates as high art.

Cameraman unknown, Video still from Saddam Hussein's medical examination by a US Army physician, image:, getty images what's the opposite of independent? Film, that is. image: images

These combat camera crews use Sony PD 150's, just like civilian photojournalists (and the rest of us). In fact, I bought my first camera, a Sony VX-1000, from a war-documenting friend (whose production company, no coincidence, is named Combat Camera), who was supposed to star in Souvenir November 2001 until he got pulled into Tora Bora (ahh, the memories).

Like most documentarians, these filmmakers have a hard time getting distribution; Pentagon suits are even tighter-fisted than Miramax. But if they make a real heartstrings-pulling story --like the Jessica Lynch rescue or the Hussein body cavity search--when it does hit screens, it opens verrry wide.

This was in my mailbox:

Subject: Billionaire compares President Bush to Nazis?

...Liberal billionaire George Soros, who has compared President Bush to the Nazis ["When I hear Bush say, 'You're either with us or against us,' it reminds me of the Germans." said the Hungarian survivor of Nazi and Soviet rule, and Jew] and said that defeating him is "the central focus" of his life, will now spend $25 million in special interest money attacking him! [That's more than some people's liquid assets!]

Friends of the President [and fellow oppressed millionaire underdogs] like you are all that stand in their [the billionaires'] way. And the President needs your help!

Help us overcome the Democrats' liberal billionaire by making your contribution and emailing five [millionaire] friends today!

And here I thought millionaires and billionaires got along so well together...

Related: for your, ahem, Christmas shopping enjoyment, my Amazon list, "Books I've Read by Tycoons I've Known"

December 16, 2003

Filmmaking Interviews of Note

  • Vadim Perelman, first-time director of House of Sand and Fog, whose tantrums made many people angry in Hollywood (this is news? at least his were entertaining, as are his accounts: ""So I go to his [Harvey Weinstein's] suite at the Peninsula, and he's sitting there like Jabba the f--king Hutt with his Diet Cokes and his Marlboro Reds."). And the film's getting strong reviews. [Sean Smith for Newsweek, via GreenCine Daily]
  • Ray Pride pulls some information from Milos Stehlik of Facets Multimedia, the North American distributor for Kieslowski's Decalogue DVD, on whether its jerking aficionados' chains by releasing a barebones 2-disc version in 2000 and a better, more elaborate 3-disc version this year. [Movie City News, also via GreenCine. David, I'd be boring without you; instead, I'm a cheery mooch.]
  • Ed Halter's Village Voice interview with Errol Morris about The Fog of War, his mega-interview documentary with Robert "Rumsfeld" McNamara. [bonus: J. Hoberman's rightfully ecstatic review] [via, I found this one myself.]
  • But the Best Interview Awared goes to: Black Book's riotous Inside the Actor Love/Hate Studio session between Paul Thomas Anderson and Lars Von Trier. [via Low Culture via Gawker, who I didn't know cared about film.]

  • December 15, 2003

    What fortuitous timing. Last week's announcement of an Iraq-based, Iraqi-run tribunal to prosecute crimes against humanity, including "trying Saddam Hussein in absentia," if necessary, was a convenient pre-emptive strike against too much international meddling. Nice to have those death penalty-friendly ducks in a row just in case, you know, your trail is heating up thanks to intensive intelligence operations and dollar bill serial number-tracking.

    Also, it sure is convenient that a former Secretary of State is just leaving on a heavy diplomatic mission when you announce that your current Secretary of State is being operated on for prostate cancer. Bush apparently was informed of the surgery two weeks ago.

    In the magazine header, image:
    Issue: 2003-12-22 and 29
    Posted: 2003-12-15

    The Talk of The Town
    COMMENT/ WINNING AND LOSING/ Philip Gourevitch on how Iraq resembles Algeria.
    PERILS/ SURVIVOR: HOLIDAY EDITION/ Nick Paumgarten prepares for the worst.
    THE BENCH/ SILLY OLD BEAR V. MOUSE/ Jeffrey Toobin on the characters in a Los Angeles court case.
    THE STUMP/ DEAN WAY UPTOWN/ Ben McGrath at the Gore endorsement in Harlem.
    NOTICE/ NOBITUARY/ Andy Borowitz remembers the not yet departed.
    THE FINANCIAL PAGE/ GOING DUTCH/ James Surowiecki on how the upcoming Google I.P.O. could change Wall Street.

    PERSONAL HISTORY/ George Saunders/ Chicago Christmas, 1984/ Gambling away the holidays.

    FICTION/ Lorrie Moore/ "Debarking"

    "Hot or Cold,"
    by Maile Meloy
    "Let It Snow," by David Sedaris
    "By the Road," by Ian Frazier
    "The Weather in the Streets," by Mary Robison
    "Turn Signals," by Louise Erdrich

    BOOKS/James Wood/ A new translation of "Don Quixote."
    THE THEATRE/ Hilton Als/ Tracey Scott Wilsonís "The Story."
    A CRITIC AT LARGE/ Alex Ross/ Did Tolkien steal Wagnerís ring?
    THE CURRENT CINEMA/ David Denby/ "Cold Mountain," "Somethingís Gotta Give," "Mona Lisa Smile."

    December 13, 2003

    Talk about Psycho...

    Reading Lyn Gardner's story in the Guardian about the tyranny of playwrights' estates over reinterpretations of well-known texts, I'm all the more shocked and awed that Gus Van Sant wanted to do his shot-for-shot remake of Psycho.

    The film world has a nearly diametrically opposed view of remakes from the theater, which shows in the different perceptions of The Text. For dead mens' plays, the text is all, sacrosanct; for studio films, the script--and the writers--are cogs that get replaced as soon as they show signs of wear or sticking. As I prepare to buy the film rights to a novel from the author's estate, I'm sweating the interpretation/adaptation process. One saving grace: the author's children now work in the film and TV business.

    Here's my off-the-cuff advice for you playwrights who don't want their creative legacy snuffed out by visionless accountants: create an advisory panel or artists, playwrights, theater people, creative people, who will decide how and when your works get reinterpreted, sampled, and reformulated after you're dead. They'll serve for limited terms, so you can get new blood and new perspectives with each generation. Perhaps such an organization could be created by, like, the Artists Rights Society, and they'll provide artistic evaluations into the future. You can choose how daring or conservative you want them to be. Just a thought. 'night.

    December 12, 2003

    Artist Books for the Holidays

    If you're still looking for just the right gift for your Jewish (you better hustle) or Christian friend (you have a little more time), try an artist book from Printed Matter. Here are my, ahem, suggestions:

  • David Hammons, The Holy Bible: Old Testament. The complete works of Marcel Duchamp, rebound as a bible.
  • On Kawara's CD, One Million Years (Past), which covers the years 998,031 BC to 997,400 BC.
  • Erin Cosgrove's take on romantic fiction as conceptual art project, The Baader-Meinhof Affair, which sounds like The Rules of Attraction if Bret Easton Ellis had gone to Williams instead of Bennington.
  • J. Meejin Yoon's Absence, a simple, remarkable "portable memorial" of the World Trade Center. It consists of diecuts on 127 pages (one per floor, including the radio mast), which create sculptural voids in the shape of the towers when the book is closed. The perfect gift for the nonfinalist memorial competition entrant in your life.

  • December 12, 2003

    More Holiday Ideas:

    MAMMUT childrens stool there's a matching table, image: ikea-usa.comWe moved apartments in one of our cities recently, and so I discovered the gifting paradise that is IKEA. They don't have an affiliates program, so I don't get any money for care what you buy there. Tasteful, cheap and stultifyingly predictable. My strategy was to look for things that could be repurposed in some unexpected way. All I got was a selection of plastic children's stools. Like the infinitely repeating furniture in Looney Tunes backgrounds.

    While there, please pester every IKEA employee to bring back Raml–sa mineral water. They used to have vending machines stuffed with the royal blue bottles, all sporting the royal Swedish seal of approval.

    But I digress.
    My gift suggestion ($$$$): Give a Segway.
    Alternate suggestion ($0): Go to the self-service area of IKEA. Ride their palette-style cart like a skateboard while your companion walks, embarassed, alongside to simulate the Segway experience for free.

    December 11, 2003

    Barnes Storm

    Over at Modern Art Notes, Tyler's on a roll, posting frequently and furiously about the current court proceedings to decide the fate of The Barnes Collection, the greatest assemblage of modern art in the country. Tyler does his gadfly best, providing some very useful context (and a bit of foaming at the mouth) for this big, somewhat under-/mis-reported story.

    some cheesy Renoir pinup from the Barnes Foundation, image:

    Barnes was a new moneyed crank with a voracious appetite for once-unpopular art (Cezanne, Matisse, Renoir, Soutine, etc.), which he frequently bought in bulk, out of the artists' studios. He had an unparalleled--but not unbiased--eye; by cornering the market on cheesy Renoir nudes, for example, he forced generations of Third World dictators to decorate their palaces with much less desirable, generic soft porn. His collection, foundation, and vision were all mercilessly mocked by Philadelphia society the art establishment of his day, and he took great glee in their eventual comeuppance; he knew the world would have to come groveling back to his art someday.

    Now, though, after a couple of generations of pathetic mismanagement ("hundreds of items," including a Matisse and a Renoir gone missing. Did you check the bathroom for the Renoir, your honor?); a feckless board; the inept defensiveness of Lincoln University (the historically black institution Barnes's will put in charge of his legacy), and an utterly clueless-sounding judge, it looks like that same Philadelphia Establishment's shameless attempt to take control of the collection may succeed. It's all pretty ghetto.

    I haven't thought it all the way through yet, but Barnes comes to mind when I see the sometimes clumsy, always entertaining, mega-collecting arms race in Miami right now. I doubt that Marty Margulies or his competitors are the Alfred Barnes of the 22nd century, but I know that there are enough snotty art worlders who try to proclaim their own insiderness by mocking them behind their backs.

    December 10, 2003

    Gus Van Sant's Go-to Guy

    Gus Van Sant, Elias McConnell, and Dany Wolf
    at Cannes 2003, image:

    There he is, scorched in Death Valley and on the Saltflats of Utah; in a mold-closed school with a barebones crew on scooters; and on the Palais steps of Cannes, where he accepted the Palme D'Or this year for Elephant.

    Gus Van Sant? Sure, he's there, too, but I'm talking about Dany Wolf, the producer. The guy who actually has to figure out how to make the movies Gus sees in his head.

    While I've been a fan of Van Sant's since Drugstore Cowboy, I've been very interested in his recent bold filmmaking experiments, which coincide with my own entry into the field. I wanted to find out Wolf's on-set experience and insight on making the films that are remaking film.

    Below, read my November 2003 discussion with Wolf, an exclusive feature of

    [Note: No underage Filipino data entry workers were harmed in the transcription of this 3,000-word piece. Special thanks to Dany Wolf, Jay Hernandez and Jeff Hill, who aren't doing so bad, either.]

    not that I've seen it yet, mind you, but the cinematographer is John Toll, who also shot Terrence Malick's Thin Red Line. On second thought, why not just rent or buy Thin Red Line?

    December 9, 2003

    Gregger Stalker:

    On the (F) train to a private collection visit downtown, I stood next to the straight guy from Queer Eye, the rocker with the skank girlfriend ("the one with the hooker boots?" is how a friend remembered her). Net net: it didn't stick. He looked as dissheveled and style-free as he did at the beginning of his show.

    For some people, it turns out, metrosexuality is nothing more than a phase, something they experiment with in college. Or summer camp.

    And since it's socially acceptable to pull out your phone and fiddle with it--after all, you may be turning it off so you can better concentrate on the conversation at hand--sneaking a glance at the clock doesn't hurt the feelings of your fellow guests.

    In the magazine header, image:
    Issue: 2003-12-15
    Posted: 2003-12-08

    The Talk of The Town
    COMMENT/ HAPPY DAYS/ John Cassidy on whether the boom is for real.

    SEASON'S GREETING/ BRUSH WITH POWER/ Ben McGrath on the artist behind this yearís White House Christmas card.

    THE GOOD FIGHT/ WHEN EDIBLES ATTACK/ Rebecca Mead reports from the Food Allergy Ball in Manhattan.

    ON THE BLOCK/ MAKE IT FUNNY/ Tad Friend on how members of the National Lampoon staff went up for sale, at bargain prices.

    THE FINANCIAL PAGE/ JET BLUES/ James Surowiecki on the problems plaguing Boeing.

    ANNALS OF NATIONAL SECURITY/ Seymour M. Hersh/ Moving Targets / Vietnam-style mission in Iraq.

    SHOUTS & MURMURS/ Larry Doyle/ I Killed Them in New Haven

    FICTION/ Roddy Doyle/ "Recuperation"

    THE ART WORLD/Peter Schjeldahl/ A John Currin retrospective.

    THE THEATRE/ Hilton Als/ "Never Gonna Dance."

    BOOKS/ Adam Gopnik/ Views of tall buildings.

    THE CURRENT CINEMA/ Anthony Lane/ "Big Fish," "Girl with a Pearl Earring."

    December 8, 2003

    New at Lucian K Truscott IV writes a sobering, scathing op-ed in the NY Times which points out the distance and gaps in experience and POV between troops actually deployed in Iraqi towns and the political appointee/apparatchiks at their "hardship posts" in the Green Zone, the Occupation HQ in Saddam's former palace complexes.

    Ahh, that's a better. Now I can endlessly praise the programming acumen of the MoMA Documentary Fortnight without it sounding like pure self-promotion.

    Three of Amar Kanwar's most recent works--including A Night of Prophecy, which I killed my Friday night in Miami for, and his unsurpassed A Season Outside, a poetic Cremaster-meets-nuclear-brinksmanship documentary which was one of the greatest finds at last year's Documenta XI--will be shown as part of MoMA's Documentary Fortnight festival. Three films screen together on Sunday December 21. Be there.

    Complete schedule for this year's MoMA's Documentary Fortnight
    A slew of Amar Kanwar posts from Documenta.
    A post about Souvenir November 2001's screening at last year's MoMA DF

    December 6, 2003

    V(S)IP at Art Basel Miami

    The S is for Self, as in Self-Important. And I wasn't alone. Far from it. The most unnecessary question of the day was the endearing, "Do you know who I am?" It wasn't unnecessary because the Swiss minions running the art fair were so gracious, but because people were always telling you how fabulous they and their taste are anyway. My VIP card didn't score me an early private screening of the only piece I wanted to see in the video program; fortunately, though, the snow conspired to keep me in town one more night. I saw Amar Kanwar's 2002 A Night of Prophecy, which he produced for last year's Documenta XI.

    Amar Kanwar's A Night of Prophecy production still, image:

    I left the tawdry spectacle of NY art dealers singing karaoke for what turned out to be basically a series of subcontinental music videos. Kanwar filmed people singing calls for caste revolution and protests of various ethnic conflicts. It was alternately moving and didactic, always poetic, but hopelessly at odds with the shiny-as-a-C-print materialist, money-soaked, elitistriving artfest that hosted it. The thirty people at the start of the screening dwindled to less than half that, with only about 8-10 of us pinko Gandhi-ists watching the entire thing. Why some people wouldn't want to spend their Friday night in South Beach being called (in melodic Hindi) an exploitative thief living off the sweat of the poor is beyond me.

    (Of course, I'm writing this from the Delta Crown Room at the airport...the sweaty sunburned masses are already too much for me to deal with apparently...)

    December 3, 2003

    about living and writing

    Offline occurrences, previously known as life, have preoccupied me lately, and I've been working, consuming, seeing, reading, and writing less, hence a lighter-than-usual posting volume. Well, actually, I did some writing last week, but I prefer not to post it here, at least not yet. It's not that it's irrelevant, just the opposite.

    For more information, please refer to my post of 11.24.03

    Due to copyediting euphoria in the wake of Bush's secret Thanksgiving daytrip to Baghdad, the following quote from Richard Keil of the Bloomberg News service was incomplete:

    "Mr. Keil leaned across the aisle, shoved aside his i-Pod headset and grinned as he said, 'The president of the United States is AWOL, and we're with him. The ultimate road trip.' "

    The full quote should read, "The president of the United States is AWOL again."

    Buy me an i-Pod. Buy you an i-Pod.

    December 3, 2003

    On the Meaning of Six Months

    I remember when I found Wired, it felt written by people about six months ahead of me. After a couple of years, though, I stopped reading it when I felt I was about six months ahead of it.

    In the early weblogging days, I felt six months or so ahead of the New York Times, but also felt that the Times has been closing the gap a bit lately.

    I'm quite used to being six months ahead of Wired, but what does it mean when I'm three and six months ahead of boingboing?

    [update: ditto. Xeni Jardin's Wired Interview with David Byrne. And a direct link to that holiday gift of choice, David Byrne's artist book/DVD, E.E.E.I. (Envisioning Emotional Epistemological Information).]

    [via TMN] has been completely reconstructed using Paul Ford's homegrown FTrain code. Is it enough to call it code? Here's what Paul says about it:

    The primary goal of, the goal which all other goals serve, is to make the site fully conscious and self-aware by 2051. Conservative estimates place computer power as equaling brainpower by then, and after 10,000 nodes (200 a year for 50 years), there should be enough inside the site for it to come to its own conclusions. I will return to this topic at a future date.
    Related: my first giddy, gushing post about exploring FTrain
    As for, I'm very pleased they're launching the site with The Proclamation of Baghdad (coming Dec. 4). Subscribe, sure, but get this month's issue for the "Weekly Review"-style look at recent scientific findings on the back page.

    Since 2001 here at, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

    Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting that time.

    comments? questions? tips? pitches? email
    greg [at] greg [dot ] org

    find me on twitter: @gregorg

    about this archive

    Posts from December 2003, in reverse chronological order

    Older: November 2003

    Newer January 2004

    recent projects, &c.

    Social Medium:
    artists writing, 2000-2015
    Paper Monument, Oct. 2016
    ed. by Jennifer Liese
    buy, $28

    Madoff Provenance Project in
    'Tell Me What I Mean' at
    To__Bridges__, The Bronx
    11 Sept - Oct 23 2016
    show | beginnings

    Chop Shop
    at SPRING/BREAK Art Show
    curated by Magda Sawon
    1-7 March 2016

    eBay Test Listings
    Armory – ABMB 2015
    about | proposte monocrome, rose

    It Narratives, incl.
    Shanzhai Gursky & Destroyed Richter
    Franklin Street Works, Stamford
    Sept 5 - Nov 9, 2014
    about | link

    TheRealHennessy Tweets Paintings, 2014 -

    Standard Operating Procedure
    about | buy now, 284pp, $15.99

    CZRPYR2: The Illustrated Appendix
    Canal Zone Richard Prince
    YES RASTA 2:The Appeals Court
    Decision, plus the Court's
    Complete Illustrated Appendix (2013)
    about | buy now, 142pp, $12.99

    "Exhibition Space" @ apexart, NYC
    Mar 20 - May 8, 2013
    about, brochure | installation shots

    HELP/LESS Curated by Chris Habib
    Printed Matter, NYC
    Summer 2012
    panel &c.

    Destroyed Richter Paintings, 2012-
    background | making of
    "Richteriana," Postmasters Gallery, NYC

    Canal Zone Richard
    Prince YES RASTA:
    Selected Court Documents
    from Cariou v. Prince (2011)
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