31 May 2007

Time Out NY throws down the gauntlet; indictes the hipster for killing New York cool

Has the hipster killed cool in New York? Did it die the day Wes Anderson proved too precious for his own good, or was it when Chloë Sevigny fellated Vincent Gallo onscreen? Did it vanish along with Kokie’s, International Bar and Tonic? Or when McSweeney’s moved shop to San Francisco and Bright Eyes signed a lease on the Lower East Side? Was it possible to be a hipster once a band that played Northsix one night was heard the next day on NPR’s Weekend Edition? Did it hurt to have American Apparel marketing soft-porn style to young bankers? Was something lost the day Ecstasy made the cover of the Times Magazine? Or was it the day Bloomberg banned smoking in bars? And how many times an hour could one check e-mail and still have an honest, or even ironic, claim on being cool?

Read the full article by By Christian Lorentzen

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Luxury living on Avenue D

This is just too much. Avenue D?!!?!? Where GG Allin shit himself in the middle of the street from bad heroin and threw it at passing taxis? Avenue D, where you'd get shanked for a half eaten bag of plantains?! Where the squatters wouldn't even go and they still steal car stereos like its 1987?! Is that the Avenue D we're talking about? Oh, ok. I just wanted to make sure.

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Cease-Fire in Iraq?!

WASHINGTON (AP) - U.S. military commanders are talking with Iraqi militants about cease- fires and other arrangements to try to stop the violence.

Lt. Gen. Raymond Odierno said he has authorised commanders to reach out to militants, tribes, religious leaders and others in the country that has been gripped by violence from a range of fronts including insurgents, sectarian rivals and common criminals.

"We are talking about cease-fires, and maybe signing some things that say they won't conduct operations against the government of Iraq or against coalition forces,"

"It's just the beginning, so we have a lot of work to do on this," he said. "But we have restructured ourselves to organise to work this issue."

Odierno said the effort goes hand in hand with reconciliation efforts by the Iraqi government.

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and other leaders are under increasing pressure from Washington to do more to achieve reconciliation among factions because, officials argue, no amount of military force can bring peace to the country without political peace.

Al-Maliki announced a national reconciliation proposal nearly a year ago that has made limited progress. It offered some amnesty to members of the Sunni-led insurgency and a change in a law that had removed senior members of Saddam Hussein's Baath Party from their jobs.

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The Future Ain't What It Used To Be: Martine Rothblatt is a genius

I’m still reeling from an interview I watched last night with Martine Rothblatt; whom before last night I’d never even heard his/her name. There is no other way to describe it other than: far out. Martine is this soft spoken, ethereal transgender genius. Martine is responsible for launching several communications satellite companies.

S/he was one of the first people to dream up the commercialisation of space; inventing the first nationwide vehicle location system in 1983 called Geostar.In 2007 GPS systems and things like OnStar are commonplace, but he was coming up with this stuff over 20 years ago.

Martine basically invented satellite radio and was principally responsible for several other unique applications of satellite communications technology.

In 1993 his then ten-year old daughter Jenisis became mysteriously ill............... She could barely walk to her school bus without gasping for air. With alarming frequency, her lips would turn blue and her voice would shrivel to a squeak. She was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension and doctors gave her 30 months to live.

Rothblatt refused refused to accept this dire verdict and immediately went to work on developing a cure for his daughters rare ailment; forming a foundation and later creating a biotech firm (United Therapeutics) to corral resources and contacts into a search for a cure.

Eventually doctors were able to stabilize the illness with a cocktail of seven pills, including blood thinners, heart strengtheners and a potent anti-hypertensive. Rothblatt still pursued a better treatment and an all out cure. His United Therapeutics collective created a drug called Remodulin which appears to lower pulmonary blood pressure while avoiding infection; he had developed the cure for his daughters illness.

The dude is brilliant beyond compare and now he’s talking about nanorobotics and nanobots which are microscopic smart robots. He says with the modern ability to make sateilete dishes the size of a pinhead they can now be injected into the bloodstream to fight diseases on a cellular level; attacking areas a surgeons scalpel and/or radiation couldn't ever reach.

In layman's terms, which is the only way I can comprehend all this shit, scientists will teach and program these microscopic robots what to look for as evil inside the body; once inside the body, controlled by satellite, these little guys will head directly for the bad shit and kill it; no surgery, no radiation, no pills, nothing. Its basically like the movie Inner Space come to life. Dennis Quaid is the nanobot that has been injected into Martin Short's bloodstream; but instead of blasting Sam Cooke, drinking whiskey and ogling Meg Ryan; Quaid is going to cure the ills inside Martin Short's body on a cellular level.

Never mind freezing your body in a meat locker until they come up with a cure for your disease; Rothblatt is talking about downloading your every thought and memory from your brain, cloning you a new body to live inside and then uploading all your memories back into your head. "If I knew then what I know now" will no longer be simply a regretful saying. Rothblatt is on the fucking doorstep of actually doing all these things; they won't be dreams or ideas much longer.

This is serious sci-fi shit come totally real. Betwixt this book I've been reading on black holes and the interview I caught last night, my head is spinning. I’ve never been so blown away by an interview with a mortal before, ever.

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A forensic psychologist friend of mine advised me to "stop the mania". He says I update this site too much and he may be right. Stuff I've written that I was momentarily proud of is instantly shoved to the bottom because I'm constantly updating this with hot breaking news stories. I'll try to "stop the mania", you dick. I love you.

This morning I switched up my breakfast routine and had a fruit and yogurt situation which turned out to be pretty deelish. It made me think about diners. I really need to write a good long article on diners and how fascinating I find them. From the kids meals named after planets and constellations to the paper placemats with the old cocktail recipes to those cookies at the register that crumble just looking at them to the ubiquitous "healthy choices" which most always boasts the quintessential cottage cheese / grapefruit platter. Its all so innocently 80's that I simply love it and can't get enough of it.

Before I got to my office this morning I was stopped in the street by two tourists...................... I immediately recognised the French accent. The dude had on a Cypress Hill shirt and the girl was a few loose paces behind him looking somewhat puzzled and more lost. He asked me where the post office was but in his accent "this" rhymed with "office" in a peculiar way I can't really explain. Unfortunately I had no idea where the closest post office was and I felt bad because it instantly reminded me and my best friend R. frantically wandering around some foreign midtown during the A.M. rush hour trying to find a consulate or the post office to take care of some dire bureaucratic bullshit on tour. Thats another very long story I need to commit to writing: What its like to have your giant tour bus break down; be abandoned by your American record label and your European booking agency therefore being forced to rent two vans in France to continue the tour, then have one of the vans get smashed by a tractor at a festival in Holland that you're about to play with Run DMC, then when returning the vehicles to the car rental spot in France cause an accident because some guy was letting you cross the street and the guy behind him smashes into his trunk. This is all true and all being saved in my head for my autobiography which will be called "Shit Sandwich".

So I guess the moral of the story is, less news for Gotham City and more memoirs and observations.

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30 May 2007

Douche-chills (noun): An overwhelming feeling of uncomfortable embarrassment brought on by watching someone make a fool of themselves

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Like a puzzled panther...

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Winston Smith: The Last Man in Europe

Big Brother has officially arrived...






Top 10 Naked People on Google Earth

Download Google Earth and see for your damn self.

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A Day in the Life of a Young Jeezy

What did we learn today?

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Abdul says she didn't know her purpose in life until she became a judge on American Idol; cue the worlds smallest violin; love the dress though. Holla

Holy Pity Party, Batman!

"I knew since I was a little girl that I had this profound way of touching people. My purpose is bringing out everybody's best and being that cheerleader to other people's success,"

"Being a judge on `American Idol' overshadows being a Grammy Award winner and selling millions of records," she says.

Abdul has been diagnosed with reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD), a chronic neurological disorder that causes severe pain.
"I have four titanium plates in my neck. I've had 14 surgeries over the years. I had an operation the same evening as the first season finale of `American Idol,'" she says. "It can come and go at any time, but I no longer have the intense nerve pain that is associated with RSD, thank God."
Abdul - who says she was hit by a drunk driver in 1987 and injured in an emergency plane landing in the early '90s - says she is treated with anti-inflammatory medications and has massage and acupuncture treatments for her pain..........................

"If I appear exhausted on television, it's because I am!" she says. "I have a lot of sleepless nights because I'm in so much pain. I was taking far more medication on earlier seasons (of `American Idol'), and nobody said anything. I try to say something and I stumble, and that's what people have picked up on. I'm not polished."
When asked how she responds to claims that her behaviour during "Idol" is sometimes bizarre, Abdul replies:

"I'm sick of it. I've never been drunk. I don't do recreational drugs. It's defamation of character."

The choreographer and former Laker girl also says: "I'm a warrior. I'm not the best dancer, and I'm certainly not the best singer, but I am an entire package of a great performer."
You go, girl.

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Worst. Couple. Picture. Ever.

Fuck this.

Gimme this.

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I can't swim but if I could this would be cool

The Manhattan Island Foundation, est. 1993, organises swimming events in the waters around Manhattan. Since its inception, the Foundation has attracted nearly 10,000 participants in more than 70 swimming races, thus helping to revive a local aquatic tradition that had been abandoned for nearly a century.

The season's premier contest is the annual Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, which draws an international roster of swimmers. This summer the Foundation is also hosting ten other events of various distances inlcuding two multi-sport races; and three open-water swim clinics.

The 2007 Swim Series began with a bang this past weekend at the Lady Liberty Swim. Results can be found here. If you missed the Lady Liberty, there's still time to enroll as a swimmer or a volunteer for the Park to Park Swim on June 10th.

Stroke it.

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Back From Samoa

  • Band graffiti stopped being cool after Black Flag broke up; give it up, bro.

  • My boy Neil deGrasse Tyson schooled me to a term he coined;"Manhattanhenge". Apparently, tonight's sunset will be perfectly aligned (Postal Service?) with the east-west grid of Manhattan streets. However, my boy Tyson is saying Manhattanhenge '07 doesn't occur until tomorrow night and he's the one who made this shit up so I'll take his word for it. Viewing the phenomenon is best from the east side, which takes advantage of the long fetch of streets, from 14th Street and above. But, remember, staring at the sun, even a setting sun, is not a smart thing to do. I'd say go check it out tonight and if not, go tomorrow, too. What the hell else u gonna do?

  • How the fuck is a married millionaire NYC baseball player hanging with a Vegas stripper in Toronto somehow front page news?! I guess when celebs are falling over themselves to apologise to their public for not wearing their seatbelts, anything goes?

  • LAPD admits making "mistakes" during May Day riot; such as... oh, leaving behind living witnesses; y'know things of that nature.

  • Sundance Institute at BAM: Films from the 2007 Sundance Film Festival: This Saturday at 11:30pm Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten and again Fri, June 8 at 8:45pm. Holla.

  • Interpol (featuring Carlos D. and his wacky new nose broom) have added a NYC date at the Bowery Ballroom. Tickets are on sale for the June 5th show. Password = gaius

  • World oil prices jumped briefly today after a television station in Tulsa, Oklahoma -- the No. 62 U.S. media market -- posted an erroneous story about a refinery fire on its Web site. At 10:14 EDT, CBS affiliate KOTV reported that a lightning strike had caused a fire at an Oklahoma refinery -- sparking a flurry of excitement among energy traders and boosting U.S. crude prices 40 cents. The refining company announced the story was "completely wrong" and the station withdrew the story. "All it takes is a screw-up on a Web site to move the market. It just goes to show how tense this market is," said a Houston-based oil trader. Yeah, thanks. Maybe tmrw you can post that the U.S. is withdrawing from Iraq, effective immediately because a giant meteor is on its way. See what happens.

  • So "The Ronald Reagan Diairies" outsold Al Gore's new cookbook "Salt with Reason" book "Assault on Reason" in opening week action. Naturally everyone is trying to turn this into something symbolic.

  • Interview with an Ape? Awwwww.

  • I guess Matt Lauer is being punished for the seatbelt scandal; NBC announces its sending the "Today Show" to Cuba.

  • Prince is releasing a new "fragrance" and will play a Minneapolis mall to celebrate. If you buy the eau you'll get a free ticket to the show in the food court; Oh, thing is, the eau will run you $250 a bottle "plus service fees and taxes".

  • The Po wants to talk to Fat Joe; Joe Crack The Don was riding in his black Escalade (holla) with a guy and a girl who were both shot at & killed; the girl died on the scene and the kid died a few hours later in the hospital. I guess the fight started in the parking lot and carried over into the street after everyone got in their cars. South Beach, Miami draws large crowds of hip-hop heads for concerts and parties over the Memorial Day weekend. More than 700 people were arrested over the 3 days this year and over 1,000 were arrested during the same weekend last year.

  • Bonus Fun Fact: The year on a wine doesn't mean when it was bottled & corked but when the grapes were actually picked. However, this is a pretty dumb fun fact because you'd assume that if the grapes were picked in 1998, the goddamn thing would be bottled within the same YEAR, no? Ugh. Fuck whoever told me this.

  • Kylie Minogue spent her 39th birthday in London with sister Dannii. The pair (Oh my) spent most of the rainy day indoors but did manage to skeak out to the movies that evening. Low-key and lovely. Happy belated bday Kylie!

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Lauer; Bush; presidential hopefuls all apologising for not finishing their supper

After challenging New Jersey Govenor Jon Corzine for not wearing a seat belt, "Today" show co-host Matt Lauer apologised today for an interview with Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney in which neither man wore a seat belt while driving through New Hampshire.

In an interview NBC is now using to promote the "Today" show, Lauer is shown questioning Corzine about the example he set, since New Jersey has a mandatory seat belt law. Following the accident, Corzine apologised, paid a fine as well as his hospital bills and taped a public service announcement promoting seat belt usage. Its the one that goes "Hi, I'm Governor Jon Corzine and I should be dead." Hahahaha!

Meanwhile, President Bush was criticised this month after he was shown driving unbelted on his Texas ranch... on the back of a bucking bronco.

Republican presidential contender Romney apologised for not wearing his belt in the Lauer interview, saying in a statement:
"Sometimes I forget to wear my seat belt. For my own safety, I need to keep reminding myself to buckle up."

OH GOD, will you ALL please just shut the FUCK up.

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The good, the bad and the ugly hit the red carpet for the Las Vegas Lookalikes convention BLARGGGHH BARF

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All Aboard the Winehouse Bandwagon; Sir Elton eats it up

EJ and his man at a recent Winehaus gig in London.

Wanna see more pics of Winetits?

Holy Diamanda, Batman!

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Why are new condos being advertised like new movies? "In a worrrrllddd..."

What the ish is this? I guarantee none of the people-types depicted in this wanna-be Warhol fucking CONDO coming attraction will be able to afford a studio in this gallant edifice.

pic by Copyranter

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Bewildered, Sickened, Horrified and Puzzled

Stupid Yoko Ono was part of a stunt at a London radio station yesterday in which gonzo artist Mark McGowan ate cooked pieces of a Corgi, Queen Elizabeth II's dog of choice.

What the fuck?!

McGowan staged the dog-eating stunt to protest the Queen's husband's treatment of a fox on a hunt last year. Uh, what?

While the artist did his best to swallow a few chunks, Yoko could only manage a small taste before looking "a bit strange," according to McGowan.

Performance artist McGowan is a rabid vegetarian and animal-rights activist who once notoriously ate a swan to protest the monarchy. He says that the Corgi had died at a breeding farm.

I dunno, bro. Sometimes the stunt eclipses the reason. All I know is you ate a dog. I don't see what you've proven or what changes you've made. Have you raised awareness about the issue at hand ? Does the end justify the means? I'm torn, but I'm leaning towards thinking this dude is just a douche.

This is from McGowan's website:

In an extraordinary art event artist and animal rights activist Mark McGowan is to eat a Corgi dog live on the Radio on Tuesday 29th May 2007, in a protest against the Royals and their treatment of animals. The dog died recently at a Corgi breeding farm in Southern England and will be prepared and cooked for McGowan's consumption on the Bob and Roberta Smith radio programme on 104.4 Resonance FM at 9pm in the evening.

McGowan says, "I know some people will find this offensive and tasteless but I am doing this to raise awarness about the RSPCA's inability to prosecute Prince Phillip and his friends shooting a fox earlier this year, letting it struggle for life for 5 minutes and then beating it to death with a stick."
Rabid vegetarians don't eat swans and dogs. Oh, and what the fuck was Yoko doing there?!

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That was easy; Staples employees jumped for wearing red

Two Staples store employees and a shopping center customer were beaten by reputed gang members, apparently for wearing red clothing yesterday. The Staples employees were dressed in red uniform polo shirts.

It was the second attack over colours in two months. In April, a 12-year-old boy was hit on the head with a skateboard after he refused to take off a red shirt.

Police stopped a car nearby and witnesses identified the suspects who were arrested and booked on suspicion of committing battery for gang purposes. One of the suspects was also was held on suspicion of drunken driving.

Staples has 190 stores in California and workers clad in the company's polo shirts have been assaulted at other stores because the colour red is claimed by The Bloods, spokeswoman Amy Shanler said. In some cases, Staples has changed the uniform to prevent further attacks. She wouldn't say which stores had changed their uniform colours. "We have changed the uniform before because of the gang situation," Shanler said. "There hasn't been anything discussed as far as this situation."

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This is intense as it is important: A collection of information about each U.S. service member who has died in Iraq; Ghosts of war on MySpace

Army Private Clinton Tyler McCormick is buried in Florida, but his photo and his words are still online. They haven't changed since he logged in to his MySpace profile on Dec. 26, 2006 — the day before he was killed by a makeshift bomb in Baghdad.

In earlier wars, families had only the letters that soldiers sent home; often, bits and pieces were removed by cautious censors. Iraq is the first war of the Internet age, and McCormick is one of many fallen soldiers who have left ghosts of themselves online — unsentimental self-memorials, frozen and uncensored snapshots of the person each wanted to show to the world.

"I am a paratrooper, that means that I jump from a perfectly good airplane into who knows what," wrote Millican, who was 20 when he died.
Full article is here "Iraq's war dead live on - online"

Meanwhile, The Washington Post has compiled an exhaustive amazing collection of photographs and information about each U.S. service member who has died in Iraq and Afghanistan. It can be seen, here.

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Take me home tonight, I don't want to let you go till you see the light

  • Ah, Germany in June... I was there last year at this time and it was hot as fuck. Now, its snowing! ... Freak snow, freezing temperatures and tropical storms across Europe. The next person that says "global warming" is getting punched right in the dick.

  • Oh, Martha, there you go pissing off the American Indians again: Martha Stewart's attempt to trademark "Katonah'', a move that has already riled some of her village neighbours, has now upset some American Indians because the name originally belonged to a 17th-century chief.

  • Russians don't fuck around: A house in Finland (aww beautiful Finland) belonging to Andrei Nekrasov was ransacked. Nekrasov is the director of "Rebellion: The Litvinenko Case" a film about Russian spy Aleksandr Litvinenko, who died in London last year after being poisoned with radioactive polonium. We talk about this a lot on this site so you should know the players by now. You may recall the film was added to the Cannes Film Festival at the last minute and people freaked out.

  • Freak snow storm hits Nepal. Nepal?! The snow storm is said to have hit a mountainous area where hundreds of people had gathered to collect an herb locally known as Yarshagumba, which is thought to increase sex drive. Don't tell me these knuckleheads were harvesting Horny Goat Weed?!

  • Interview with the dude who books for Union Hall.

  • The 20 Best "That Guys" of All Time: You know those B-list character actors just talented enough secure bit parts in a handful of movies every year, but not quite talented enough to become brand-name stars? Yeah, them.

  • Yo, that Mets game last night was dope. Yankees still blowing ass, lost again, 14 1/2 games out now; they've got the same record as the goddamn Devil Rays. I mean its gotten so bad for the Yanks that opponents are stealing home on them. Ha!

  • What a friggin' knob: Woman emails local news show for help after becoming trapped in room behind knobless door. I'm sorry bt this could only happen in Canada.

  • Some dude stole a $988,000 gold bathtub from a hotel in Tokyo. Fuck, and I thought I was a bad ass stealing towels and pillows.

  • Photobucket to Become Part of MySpace; Fox News Corp. owns the world. Your mothers ass is still for sale however.

  • A man with a rare and dangerous form of tuberculosis ignored doctors' advice and took two trans-Atlantic flights, leading to the first U.S. government-ordered quarantine since 1963. The dude took one flight for his wedding and honeymoon and another because he feared for his life. Hundreds of health authorities around the world are now scrambling to track down passengers who were seated near the man for testing. Health officials said that the man had been advised not to fly and that he knew he could expose others when he boarded the jets from Atlanta to Paris, and later from Prague to Montreal. The man, however, said that doctors didn't order him not to fly and only suggested he put off his long-planned wedding in Greece. He knew he had a form of tuberculosis and that it was resistant to first-line drugs, but he didn't realize it could be so dangerous, he said. He flew to Paris on May 12 aboard Air France Flight 385. While in Europe, health authorities reached him with the news that further tests had revealed his TB was a rare, "extensively drug-resistant" form, far more dangerous than he knew. They ordered him into isolation, saying he should turn himself over to Italian officials. Instead, the man flew from Prague to Montreal on May 24 aboard Czech Air Flight 0104, then drove into the United States at the Champlain, N.Y., border crossing. He told the newspaper he was afraid that if he didn't get back to the U.S., he wouldn't get the treatment he needed to survive.

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  • Bibliophilia Bibliomania? Present.

    A wise someone once said: "We buy books because we think we're buying the time to read them." That very well may be one of the most perfect statements I've ever heard.

    I can lose a few hundred dollars at Barnes in about 15 minutes; and when I'm too impatient, I peruse Amazon. Yesterday I bought 4 books and 1 on Amazon.

    My name is J, and I'm a book addict. The words are my heroin; the cashier my dealer; the security guards are the Feds. At lunch I rarely eat, instead I walk 5 blocks to the Barnes on 5th Avenue. I just want to smell the pulp and touch the covers and read the back covers. I want to see the little author pictures where it says where they live happily with their 2 children and 4 dogs.

    When we were touring a lot I had one bag just for books; it weighed a ton. I used to bring 8 or 9 books per tour because I'm fully aware my A.D.D. is brutal; and there is nothing worse than being on an extended trip, reading two chapters of a book and getting bored and not having another book to reach for. I guess it's a lot like chain smoking; I get bored of one subject - could be after a few lines, a few pages, a few paragraphs or few chapters - and I need something else to stimulate me, immediately or else I'll crumble and start walking on the ceiling of the tour van, which I often did. Ask R., she'll tell you.

    So yesterday I bought a book for a friend online in the morning. At lunch, I headed for Barnes. Like a junkie on his way to meet his dealer to get his fix under the time constraints of the corporate lunch hour. Up Madison Avenue, turn right on 5th, shit, I went too far over; Ok, stay calm, its only a few blocks down 5th now, ahh, there it is. Through the revolving doors; feel that rush of publicly traded funded freon cooling you down. I smell coffee and chocolate and books. Was I in heaven? Oh, no, just Barnes and Noble.

    I dart for the "New Non-Fiction" section. I have no patience for fiction, but some of my friends do and my mom does and my friends mom does, so I touch some covers on the "New Fiction" table; I read some back covers; fanning the tight pages with my thumb like a deck of cards. I just love the ritual of stumbling across a book you never heard of that could change your life and there are just so many goddamn books on so many goddamn subjects. And they somehow all interest me on some level.

    Right now I'm juggling a few books; I'm finishing up Farley Mowat's "Never Cry Wolf", I'm really just savouring it, I don't want to finish it but the end is nigh; I've got Neil deGrasse Tyson's "Death By Black Hole" on the right front burner and this morning I started an older Chuck Klosterman that had somehow slipped through my cracks called "Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs". On top of these 3, we've got the few more I bought yesterday: Anthony Bourdain's "The Nasty Bits" and Elizabeth Wurtzel's classic "Prozac Nation" which I'd started reading in Manchester at Kimberly Close's house on Sunrise Road but never finished.

    Chances are I'll finish a few of these and a few others will get put down and left for another time or maybe never. That's just how my head works. I'll get distracted with a new bundle of books and on and on it goes. I just love buying them and touching them. I love going home knowing my bag is extra heavy because its filled with new books. In fact, I'm perfectly happy with this addiction, I just wish I could afford it.

    Oh and I failed to mention, last night I fell asleep reading and circling things within a listicle in the new ish of New York Magazine: "The Best Novels You’ve Never Read: Sixty-one critics reveal their favorite underrated book of the past ten years".

    Perhaps I need an intervention?

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    Goodnight Irene, and by Irene I mean Apple: Microsfot Unveils New Surface Touch Computer

    In the next year, Bill Gates will manage one of the highest-profile transitions in American business history — he’ll leave his day job as Chief Software Engineer at Microsoft, the $300 billion company he co-founded 32 years ago, and will move full time into philanthropy.

    But before he leaves, Gates has a few more high-tech projects to finish. Until this morning, one project — almost five years in the making and code-named "Milan", — was top-secret.

    It's a touch sensitive computer system, like an ATM screen but better. More like Megatouch. Watch the demo and trust me, you'll be Ooohing and Ahhhing, too.

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    29 May 2007

    What did we learn today?

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    Rabbit Island Never Die!

    From Gothamist:
    Coney Island may be changing a lot after its last summer with Astroland scheduled to close and redevelopment of the area, but the people over at the Coney Island History Project are doing their best to preserve memories of the old Coney Island. This season, the project inaugurates a permanent home, which is fittingly under the Cyclone.

    In its new space, the History Project already has events scheduled, with three exhibitions already slated for the summer: Land Grab! A History of Coney Island Development; The Queen of Coney Island (HEY!); and Sidewalk Photo Galleries and their Props. You can search their collection online, too.

    Though Coney Island will undoubtedly change a lot once the summer is over, it's good to know that history will always be preserved in the Cyclone. The Cyclone and the space for the Coney Island History Project are landmarked - the perfect place to show people what Coney Island was like in the past.

    Hours at the Coney Island History Project are Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, 11 am to 7 pm, through Labour Day.

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    What is it with Meg White?

    What about Meg White is so strangely attractive? I mean I know she's pretty but theres something else there that I can't wrap my finger around. She's the girl-next-door from Detroit, she plays drums like Animal from The Muppets and to me she looks like she could be from London but not London proper, maybe a suburb; she looks like she's from Cambridge or Bromley or Quigney, even; somewhere several tube stops away from anything worth doing. I could listen to Meg's voice on "In the Cold, Cold Night" for a good 6 hours straight before it got annoying. I guess she's sort of got a Christina Ricci thing going on too, which is hardly ever bad.

    Maybe its simple, then.

    Anyway, AOL has posted the video for "Icky Thump", the first single off the new White Stripes record by the same name. Theres a striped horse, subtitles, crazy contact lenses, a scarlet room and more. The record comes out 19 June but I'm sure its online already so go get it.

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    File under: Shameless

    Peter Max Lawrence throws grammar to the wind with his highly acclaimed piece "The Convetional War"

    So I'm on Ebay perusing Peter Max prints and theres some dude on there going by the name "Peter Max Lawrence" and all his horrible $8 watercolour paintings are mixed in with the real Peter Max stuff. How annoying.

    Its sort of like searching MySpace Music for Dylan songs and coming across these herbs also named Dylan playing acoustic guitars. Its like, bro, pick a new name. Your parents might've been cool enough at the time to name you Dylan but if you're gonna play music now, you've gotta lose the name. It's just silly, and if you're not doing it to be cocky, you're just naïve and always being both must be a drag.

    I know record labels who think they're so fucking clever; strategically marketing their bands' albums to be filed under other stuff it sounds like instead of alphabetically where you would expect to find it. How lame and fake. If my bands' name starts with a goddamn "B" I want our CD to be filed under "B" not under "P" because our stupid record label think its clever and wants to exploit Pantera fans or whatever.

    Ugh, I swear there is a very special place in hell for advertisers and marketing exces like that. The same ones who'd rather release a sequel than an original movie.

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    Sunny Day Women #12 & 35

  • Beautiful white tiger named Odin loves to swim. He's in San Fran at the zoo. I want to bite those hands off.

  • A radical group at a Bronx fundraiser ambushed Giuliani this morning, calling him, among other things, one of the "criminals of 9/11."

  • Mayor Bloomberg said renaming a Brooklyn street after Sonny Carson is one of the worst ideas the city council has ever considered. Carson led protests against police brutality in the 1980s. He has said he was anti-white and said he was proud of the rioters in Crown Heights in 1991. He died at age 66 in 2002.

  • We may live in an era of unprecedented change for telephones, but one thing has barely evolved in the last 125 years: the phone number. Between home, work, and cell, most of us have at least three of them to wrangle. When you think about it, the idea that both landline and wireless numbers must remain tied to specific equipment and geographical regions is pretty archaic. It's as if you needed separate e-mail addresses for every computer that you used—and had to change your e-mail address if you moved cross-country. Enter GrandCentral, a service that tries to bring the phone number into the modern era. For starters, it gives you a number that isn't permanently associated with any line or handset in particular. Actually, GrandCentral rings all your phones at once, after you've registered your existing numbers on the company's Web site. And if you move, all your friends can keep calling your GrandCentral number rather than having to learn a new one. You simply have to register your new lines and delete the old ones. In other words, as long as you're near any of your phones, you'll get every call that anyone makes to your GrandCentral number. Or not—many of the service's seemingly bottomless bag of tricks are designed to help you avoid talking to people. It screens calls with ruthless efficiency, forcing anyone whom it can't identify (through caller ID and your address book, which it can import from Microsoft Outlook or Gmail) to say who they are. It then tells you who's calling so you can decide if you want to answer. GrandCentral also blocks calls from known phone spammers; it can even play an uncannily realistic "you have reached a number that has been disconnected" recording for telemarketers or folks you just plain don't like. Yes, but will it scramble my eggs?

  • Fruit punch and her music give me a headache but I love this pic.

  • I'm sorry but beautiful Pamela's poor kids are gonna have serious issues when they grow up. See: The Oedipus Complex

    Here's another pic of my boy Odin eating a tourists finger.

    This is sad. Feed me Seymour!

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    Trifecta Tuesday

    Salma Hayek is even hotter pregnant. I knew it.

    Jessica Alba feeds drunken shirtless NASCAR fans at a human petting zoo in North Carolina.

    Oh, Amy, where ya going girl? Love the hair, for reals.

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    Ain't nothin' gonna break my stride... Nobody's gonna slow me down, Woah no I got to keep on moving...

    Am I getting dumber or just more neurotic as I get older?

    Have you ever sat down to watch a nice, brainless entertaining movie and as soon as you get settled with your popcorn and chocolate milk, a big block of text comes up on the screen; its telling you some important shit about the plot of the movie so you have to read it? Ugh. I thought this was a movie, not summer reading!

    So you start reading the screen as a silent panic washes over you; will I finish reading this before it vanishes off the screen? I don't think I've ever not finished what was on the screen yet still I sometimes panic.

    I'm thinking to myself "Well, they must allot a standard amount of time; surely they must know how long the lowest level average reader will take to read these words on the screen. It's all been tried and tested and studied. So what if I don't finish? Am I dumb? Am I too slow?!" I'll sort of get started reading the actual words with one eye and then start scanning the length and size of the entire paragraph to see if I even stand a chance with the other eye. It's all quite unsettling.

    A similar wave of panic rushes over me when I'm prompted with these anti-spam word puzzle things.

    I was sending a bunch of emails over the weekend and suddenly I'm on some game show being asked to decipher these curved letters or else they won't let me send my mail. What the fuck? If you have ever fallen to the depths of sending that many emails in one day I'm certain you know what I'm talking about.

    So I sit there squinting at this box of warped and disfigured letters in a big disarray trying to dissuade ME, the "spammer" from sending my emails.

    So, ok, that first letter kinda looks like a "K"...but...hmm, it has some kind of horizontal line above it. This obviously isn't a "K" that I've seen before. Ok, I'll take a chance and put "K"... but I definitely don't feel confident about it, perhaps its a backwards "G"? Moving on. Ok, the next two are obviously a lower-case "c" and capital "A" or is that an "H" with a pinched roof? They tried to trick me with the diagonal line in between, but I once took that psychological exam where you look at the picture and you either see the young woman or older woman. Well, I saw both. So my eyes are not easily tricked. Nice try, MySpace! Moving along...what the shit is that? A European "7" ?! This is mind bending. It could also be a Polish "Z". Hmmm... I knew it wouldn't be this easy.

    The best part is, if you fail, they'll give you a fresh, new puzzle to solve.

    Usually by the third or fourth attempt, they'll give you one that says "DOG" in big bold arial type. As if the computer is totally laughing at you now. "Ok, you fucking moron, you're obviously not some genius computer hacker or spammer, you just wanna send your friend a stupid photo of you mooning an old lady, so, here, solve this one..." and that's when they'll roll out the "D-O-G" puzzle.


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    Reading Rainbow Revisited: A Book Report

    I'm reading this book by my boy Neil deGrasse Tyson, astrophysicist, director of the Hayden Planetarium and host of "Nova Science Now". The book be called "Death By Black Hole and Other Cosmic Quandaries". Just being seen holding this book makes you look mad smart.

    Anyway, Neil has been schooling me on some serious shit. I was never really into science or space much but the idea that we, as in Planet Earth, are just a speck of dust in an infinite universe has always blown my mind as I've always been fascinated with anything that makes me feel totally depressed or completely meaningless.

    The concept of this infinite universe is awe-inspiring no matter how you slice it; it will either make you feel worthless and insignificant or it will make you more carefree, knowing so much of our world is totally ephemeral; every beef we have, every little problem we think is the end all / be all of our tiny existence is really absolutely nothing at all when thrust upon the grand canvas of things.

    I relate appreciating and understanding the concept of the universe to how we deal with death. Losing someone we love will surely fuck us up in more ways than we could ever prepare for. And once the grief gets comfortable in your soul, you will lean either one way or the other; you'll be paralyzed with fear and regret; feeling like how could there possibly be any real meaning to life when death is so senseless and merciless... or you will be impassioned by a death to live your life more fully and carefree but for the same reasons, because life is so short and meaningless.

    The more I read about space and black holes and all this crap, the more I feel like someone I love has just died; someone inspiring and happy, and I need to be happier and live without regret and live everyday doing whatever makes me happy, no matter what it is.

    I really didn't mean for this story to turn into some Dr. Phil bullshit. Actually, I only came here to tell you about a fun fact I learned from this book about gravity.

    You know how we assume that in space there is no gravity, you just float around and drink Tang and wave to a stupid camera? Well, its all bullshit, save for the Tang and the camera.

    The condition of weightlessness in space is one of the most commonly misunderstood concepts of popular science; weightlessness and the concept of zero gravity are actually apples and oranges.

    Gravity is an attractive force which all matter possesses. Every bit of matter attracts every other bit of matter. The strength of that attraction depends on two things - the mass of any two objects, and the distance between those objects.

    Weightlessness in deep space is due to the tremendous distances between massive objects. Stuff is so far apart out there that the gravitational attraction imposed on an interstellar spacecraft is very subtle, but certainly not escapable.

    Thats why when you see those stupid astronauts floating around it looks like their in slow motion or underwater; a very small amount of gravity is pulling on them because they are so far away from earth. Gravity is present but it just isn't that strong a force up in deep space.

    Understand? I hope so because this is starting to get a little too Star Trek and I fucking hate that show.

    Wow, talk about full circle journalism... I start out talking about Reading Rainbow which was hosted by none other than LeVar Burton who would later play some dick on Star Trek.

    Fuck, I'm on fire today.


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    Beechwood 4-5789

    • Do you realise it's been 5 YEARS since we had to start dialing area codes within the boroughs! Time flies. It still feels odd dialing 1-718 just to call down the street from my haus.

    • Barnes and Noble people will LOVE you if you're looking for a book and you give them the book's ISBN number. They'll literally shower you with thanks and praise. Make their day and try it.

    • Check out this wonderful site if you know what and where "Beechwood 4-5789" is all about.

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    "Polaaand Spring, coming to you straight from Ming"

  • When I was a kid thats what I thought the Poland Spring theme was and thats because Maine doesn't rhyme with Spring you dolts!

  • Miss USA busts her ass at the Miss Universe contest; yet another reason why girls should stay out of stupid high heels. Keep it kitten, ladies. HOLLA.

  • Oh my God! Family goes one week without television or internet: Inside a family's harrowing survival diary.

  • Need a gig? Down to take a bullet for some Bush? The Secret Service is hiring.

  • Maybe I'm missing something with not eating fried chicken? Sounds like people are risking their lives for a seat with the Colonel... Cops are investigating what sparked a shooting last night at a Kennedy Fried Chicken on Archer Street in the Bronx, some dude walked in and shot 4 teenaged customers... Meanwhile a car smashed into the front of a Popeye's on 145th Street in Harlem on Monday. Three customers were injured when the sedan smashed through brick and windows.

  • I watched an amazing episode of Howard TV last night; Artie and Howard were both welling up with a burnt-out Artie on the verge of a complete nervous breakdown and laying it all out there. It was really intense, brutally candid and totally worth only getting 4 hours of sleep last night. If you have Howard TV, watch it tonight. Honestly, it was riveting.

  • I haven't listened to this dude in weeks but for some reason I can't get this song out of my fucking head. It's driving me insane.

  • Have you searched Craigslist lately? It's overflowing with people hemorrhaging Yankee tickets and that's because they suck. Following a 7-2 defeat to the goddamn Toronto Bluejays last night, the Yanks find themselves in last place in the AL East, 13 1/2 games behind Boston. Haha!
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    Chasing the dragon; Scratching the itch

    Why does it feel so goddamn good to scratch an itch? I have always wondered.

    Ever see a dog really laying in to an itch behind her ear? My dog nearly falls over sometimes because she scratches herself into a trance. It makes me jealous.

    Why the F does it feel so good?!?!?!!

    I don't really care about why we itch or what makes us itch, thats boring and everything I read on the subject makes me feel like I'm back in school. So, scratch that.

    I just wanna know what goes on when we scratch an itch; depending on the whereabouts, it can almost be orgasmic to finally scratch the shit out of that elusive bitch of an itch and once you start-a-scratchin' you don't wanna stop, right? Well, it turns out orgasms and itching are actually cousins; its all pleasure receptor shit. For as intricate as our bodys are, the pleasure department is pretty simple and the same guy who makes you feel great when you scratch that certain spot, is also the dude who makes you feel amazing when you're doing something sexual. Holla.

    So, I found itching has to do with histamine. "Histamine?!" I said. When I hear the word histamine I immediately think of medicine and Rite Aid but thats because I'm actually thinking of anti-histamine. Ah ha!

    Stay with me, friends. I'm onto something here...

    Histamine is actually a chemical protein inside our body which is released during an allergic reaction. Histamine commands some of our itch nerves to transmit information to the spinal cord where it is processed and zipped off to the brain. Thats why if you have allergies you'd take an anti-histamine medicine; to block histamines signaling powers and therefore muting your allergic symptoms. Got it? Ok, now we can move on.

    The sites activated in the brain when we itch are very similar to those switched on when we're in pain except pain causes a withdrawal response whereas itching causes a response that makes you want to go toward the site of the itching. Very interesting.

    Which leaves the main issue of why scratching feels so fucking good. The pleasure receptor road is actually a one-way street so the brain can only juggle one thing at a time. If the brain is sending you an itch and you're sending back a scratch, its gonna process the scratch and thats gonna feel good because you are squelching the itch for the time being; stimulating the nerves with an answer to what its sending out. You feel me?

    Too much scratching, however, can trigger an "itch-scratch cycle", I like to call it "the pleasure tailspin" in which the scratching aggravates the body into releasing more histamine, which causes swelling, which stimulates nerve endings, which causes more itching. . . . and next thing you know you're passed out on your bathroom floor with your hand down your boxers.

    Depending on where the itch is, more or less nerve receptors will be stimulated sending more or less good times back to your brain.

    This is why scratching an itch on your arm will feel dope, but scratching an annoying itch on your back will feel a lot better because its closer to your spinal cord; and we all know scratching an itchy head is the bomb and thats because of all the nerve endings on your scalp, son. It's pretty simple.

    So if you follow the human urge to scratch, you're going along a well-trodden neurological pathway that is hardwired into the brain. It's very satisfying. Medicines or tricks that suppress itching are sometimes not as gratifying. That shudder of pleasure from scratching that itch may be from a release of endorphins that give you a natural high.

    Fuck yeah, now you're talking... endorphins!

    Scratching turns on nerves that stimulate pleasure systems in the brain. The same pleasure systems that go buck when we...

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    Girlfriend upset boyfriend changed her ring tone

    Mina Tran, 22, and her boyfriend Phillip Lei, 27, were on their way to a movie Saturday night in Phil’s Acura when suddenly Phil thought he’d left his phone back at the pool hall.

    Phil asked Mina to call his phone to make sure it wasn’t in the car. But when the phone rang under his seat he smiled relieved while Mina recoiled in shock and disgust.

    What the fuck ring is that? You put me back on the default ringer? What, I’m just one of your little ho’s now?!”, Mina raged.

    Phil tried to explain that he’d gone into Mina’s contact to try and edit her name so when she called it would come up as ‘Mina Baby’ but he “must’ve forgotten to reset the ring tone back to the special one”.

    Mina became so inconsolable she had Phil drop her off at the train station. They haven’t spoken since but remain in each others’ Top 24.

    “I’m hopeful”, Phil said.

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    28 May 2007

    Check the Rhyme y'all

  • I love Andie's non-commital hand in this photo around whats-her-faces waist. Oh, Andie.

  • Man obsessed with cleanliness dies from the disinfectant he compulsively bathed in.

  • Lifeguards closed Florida beach today after they performed more than 200 rescues during a three hour period.

  • Aww, the other night I let a cat cross in front of my car; we had a stand-off and then I just waved at it motioning for it to go ahead and cross in front of me and it did; we shared a tender moment. Meanwhile, thousands of miles away in the UK, a man causes a 5 car pile up swerving to avoid a goldfish in a bag in the middle of the road.

  • The kids are getting restless; kids in Sweden are bored so they're setting themselves on fire and then diving into lakes. Hey, why not.

  • The Euro's a really bugging out today... A Dutch reality television show in which a terminally ill woman is to select one of three contestants to receive her kidneys when she dies is to air this week despite criticism that it pushes the boundaries of the format too far.
    Joe Rogan suggested having the contestants eat the mentally ill kidneys; NBC says that would be OK.

  • Chicken, Waffles and Cadillacs coming through windows... A car smashed into the front of a Popeye's in Harlem today. Three customers were injured when the sedan smashed through brick and windows, but were treated on the scene. Police closed down the restaurant at 145th Street and Fredrick Douglass Boulevard for the rest of the day and pulled the sedan from the building's facade. It wasn't clear if the driver was injured or what caused the crash.

  • "Why is it so difficult to accept that ancient man explored the world?" said the German man from Jersey City who wants to cross the Atlantic using a raft made of reeds and eucalyptus. Dominique Gorlitz says the two-month journey he and 11 others will make will prove that people could have traveled across the ocean in prehistoric times.

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    Iraq Veterans Against the War; Memorial Day in NYC

    From Gothamist: The Iraq Veterans Against the War, dressed in full uniform, engaged in a series of street theater actions around the New York City area yesterday. Actual veterans of the Iraq war played American service members and local volunteers played the civilians. The event was treated like a military operation with squad patrols, searches, detentions, and crowd control. An IVAW member, Adam Kokesh, said, "By reenacting what we've been through in Iraq, we hope to inspire more of our fellow Americans to act to end the war now."

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    Monday PM links

    • Will someone get poor Lindsay L. some help? She is such a mezz. Here she is passed out and puking that night after her coke bust on Sunset Blvd. I love a girl who celebrates getting busted for partying with more partying.

    • I predict in 5 years, CD's will be just about obsolete.

    • Two Cinci Reds smash into each other in the outfield; Freel knocked out and carted off.

    • Raw footage from the fire at ABC 7 last night.

    • Right Said Fred singer Richard Fairbrass and gay rights activist Peter Tatchell were attacked during a march in Moscow. Trouble broke out when demonstrators tried to appeal against a ban on a gay rights march through the Russian capital. Police arrested about a dozen demonstrators and forced them into a bus. The banned march was aimed at marking the 14th anniversary of Russia decriminalising homosexuality. Tatchell was one of several demonstrators punched and kicked by nationalists shouting "death to homosexuals". Heres video of Tatchell getting punched.

    • Las Vegas Jabba the Hutt Judge abusing her power; has dudes rubbing her feet and fixing her lunch.

    • Warm on wine, Rosie speaks and sneezes into her shirt. Says Hasseltits called after their now-infamous argument on "The View" and spoke to O'Donnell's partner Kelli. But O'Donnell says she didn't speak to Hasselbeck and "probably won't." She says they exchanged emails. O'Donnell quit "The View" after she called Hasselbeck "cowardly" for not defending her when critics said she compared U.S. troops to terrorists. During the argument, the director used a split screen with O'Donnell on one side and Hasselbeck on the other. She says when she saw the split screen that's when she "knew it was over."

    • A man clad only in his underewear wrestled an adorable wild leopard to the floor and pinned it for 20 minutes after the cat leapt through a window of his home and hopped into bed with his sleeping family. hahaha

    • Mr. Cool, The Toothpaste !!! Health officials have seized more than 350 tubes of Chinese-made toothpaste tainted with a deadly chemical reportedly found in tubes sold elsewhere in the world. Health Secretary Maria Avila said 56 tubes of toothpaste containing a chemical commonly used in antifreeze and brake fluid had been found so far. As far as we know, there is no relation between Mr. Cool, The Toothpaste and Mr. Cool Ice (seen below).

    • A JetBlue Airbus was heading from Rochester to JFK when it was struck by lightning. A smell similar to that of an electrical fire entered the passenger cabin, but there was no fire or smoke. The emergency allowed Flight 43 to land before other scheduled flights. That meant the passengers got to their destination about 20 minutes early; a first for JetBlue at JFK. Ooohhh snap!

    • Portions from from Perez Hilton: Remember that scene in Truth or Dare when Kevin Costner comes backstage? Well, more than fifteen years later, he's still talking about Madonna. When asked by her Madgesty what he thought of her Blond Ambition concert, he replied that it was "neat." After he makes a hasty exit from her dressing room, Madonna mockingly shoved her finger down her throat and says, "Anybody who says my show is 'neat' has to go." Well, apparently that whole incident in her film hurt his feelings, but he and Madonna have since made up. He tells the LA Times all about it. "Yeah, I was embarrassed by it and kind of hurt by it. I just went back there because I was asked to go back. And I found the best word that I could. I never called her on it or whatever. "But she did a really beautiful thing. She was performing in L.A. about three or four years ago, so I decided to take my daughters to see her. I just thought this is somebody they should see. I didn't call anybody for tickets, I just got tickets and we went down.... "And about the third song in, the lights were down, and she said, 'I want to apologise to someone.' And all of a sudden my face starts to get hot.... And she says, 'I want to apologize to Kevin Costner.' She just said it very simply. Ninety-eight percent of that audience didn't know what she was talking about. But I really respected that, and it showed me the power of just keeping your own counsel for a long time.... Whatever possessed her, whatever was inside her, she came to her own decision. And a bigger thing came out of some kind of humiliation. "I never wrote her to say thank you, but I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart, and that meant more to me than you could ever know." Oh, they are SO totally gonna make out now.

    • Don't forget to tune in to the WABC 770 AM for the annual rewound show!!! The schedule is here, featuring old tapes from Dan Ingram, Ron Ludy, Harry Harrison and of course Cousin Brucie. Check it. Interestingly, the many of the tapes do not come from the station’s own archives. Instead most of the vintage tapes come from hobbyist aircheck collectors who have a thriving trading community that trades recordings from stations throughout North America and the world. So what is offered is a bit random, since it is just what someone happened to tape and was in good enough condition to broadcast.

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    The Party's Over; We remember Missing Foundation

    Missing Foundation harked back to the sound and style of early industrial provocateurs like Throbbing Gristle and Einsturzende Neubauten, not just in their tribal percussion onslaught but also in their theatrical social-protest stunts.

    Led by Pete Missing, MF was a collective with several core members, several more auxiliary members, and a host of associates that swelled their ranks to as many as 20. Fueled by anarchist politics, the band favored agitprop slogans chanted over a cacophonous racket of metal, machinery, oil drums, garbage, and other found-object percussion, with guitar and other traditional instruments audible only occasionally.

    Their anti-establishment screeds took aim at a variety of targets, but what truly mattered were the group's incendiary live events -- destructive spectacles that provoked civil disturbances, histrionic media outrage, and citywide bans by nervous club owners.

    Even the band's logo -- an upside-down martini glass in the cryptographic Neubauten style that came to signify “The Party's Over" -- was the center of a widespread graffiti campaign on New York's Lower East Side, a discomforting weapon used to devalue properties and slow the area's gentrification (in keeping with the band's special concern for the poor and homeless).

    MF lead vocalist Pete Missing was born in the Bronx in the late ‘50s, and got his feet wet on the New York music scene with the punk band Drunk Driving, which was formed in 1980 and actually spawned the future MF martini-glass logo.

    Missing later moved to Hamburg, Germany, where he formed an early, short-lived incarnation of Missing Foundation in 1984 with Florian Langmaack. Helped by several extra percussionists and members of KMFDM, this group did perform live but soon broke up.

    Missing returned to New York and started a new version of Missing Foundation in 1985, which also featured drummers Chris Egan and Mark Ashwill, as well as VKP and Adam Nodleman; Langmaack would later come to New York and rejoin as well, adding saxophone and sampling to the percussion-heavy mix.

    The group's early live performances, including a notorious appearance at CBGB's, soon marked them as a chaotic and confrontational outfit whose fans couldn't be trusted to leave a venue intact. Missing took to singing through megaphones, in part because clubs would often pull the plug on the regular sound system.

    With a core membership of Missing, Langmaack, Egan, and Ashwill, MF grew to encompass a variety of musicians, visual artists, and activists who contributed to the band's performances; some of them included Dave Kelly, Bones 23, and Mark Laramee, among many others. Missing Foundation's self-titled first album appeared in 1987 on the Purge/Sound League label, initially on cassette only.

    Their second release, 1988's 1933 -- whose title and concept linked the modern U.S. with Germany just before the rise of the Nazis -- was nearly as musically primitive, but made a much bigger splash thanks to a concert in New York's Tompkins Square Park that sparked a full-scale riot. Various members had been arrested for political demonstrations, mostly on the subject of housing rights, but this incident was directly related to the group's performance antics.

    In the wake of the riot, the FBI started tailing Missing, hoping to find evidence of violent criminal activity, and police raided his ex-wife's residence in search of weapons. New York's local CBS affiliate did a sensationalist three-part story (“Cult of Rage") on the band, flinging wildly inaccurate charges of Satanism and building them up into a malevolent menace on the level of the Manson Family.

    In the midst of the hubbub, MF formed their own label, Humanity, and completed their third album, Demise, in 1989. They supported it with a European tour (American gigs were getting hard to find), and subsequently signed a contract with Restless Records, which reissued their first three albums in 1990. Also that year, the band released their proper Restless debut Ignore the White Culture, a somewhat more accessible effort that many aficionados consider the band's best. They next undertook a Gulf War-themed tour of Europe in 1991, burning gasoline and American flags at every show to protest American policy.

    A final Missing Foundation album, Go Into Exile, appeared in 1992; its title proved prophetic, as the group subsequently disbanded. Missing moved to Berlin in 1993 and stayed there until 2000; living in an artists' collective, he worked primarily on visual installations, but also collaboration on the occasional musical project. Langmaack also returned to Germany, while Egan -- who'd done most of the band's photography -- became a photojournalist. Mark Ashwill died of cancer in 2000. ~ Steve Huey, All Music Guide

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    Space Elevators and Other Cosmic Quandaries

    A space elevator is a proposed structure designed to transport material from a celestial body's surface into space. Many different types of space elevators have been suggested. They all share the goal of replacing rocket propulsion with the traversal of a fixed structure via a mechanism not unlike an elevator in order to move material into or beyond orbit.

    Space elevators have also sometimes been referred to as beanstalks, space bridges, space lifts, space ladders, skyhooks or orbital towers. Sorta like those things in the clouds in Mario Brothers.

    The most common proposal is a tether, usually in the form of a cable spanning from the surface to a point beyond geosynchronous orbit.

    As the planet rotates, the inertia at the end of the tether counteracts gravity, and also keeps the cable taut. Vehicles can then climb the tether and escape the planet's gravity without the use of rocket propulsion. Such a structure could theoretically permit delivery of cargo and people to orbit with transportation costs a fraction of those of more traditional methods of launching a payload into orbit.

    Recent proposals for a space elevator are notable in their plans to incorporate carbon nanotubes into the tether design, thus providing a link between space exploration and nanotechnology.

    I usually talk about this shit LOUDLY in bars; everyone jumps at the chance to buy an astrophysicist a drink and once they hear me say "carbon nanotubes" the girls always come runnin'.

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    We barefootin'; Daaaaaaaaan Ingram!

  • I don't care how you feel about war or politics or Hagar-era Van Halen, Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died fighting for this country but for most it simply marks the beginning of summer. People have been dying for this country for a long time; fighting wars they had no idea why they were fighting. Read some history about Memorial Day; its not just about stupid hot dogs and BBQ's. If your family lost someone in a war or you have a friend in Iraq right now, take a minute to think about them today. There's parades and shit going on all over the place. Check it out

    "We cherish too, the Poppy red
    That grows on fields where valor led,
    It seems to signal to the skies
    That blood of heroes never dies."

    • Fire at ABC-7 last night... A fire at the Upper West Side WABC-TV studios knocked out Sunday night's programming and caused the evacuation of the television network's building... The screen went black a few minutes before the 11 o'clock news and remained so until 12:50 am when the test bars came up; programming finally resumed at 1 AM. Kenny Plotnik, the station's news director, said that the blaze started when one of the lights in the first-floor studio burst and a curtain caught fire, but an FDNY spokesman for the said they were still investigating the cause. The fire was extinguished quickly, but it sent smoke throughout the entire building, forcing about 50 staff members to evacuate. Several shows are recorded at the studios, including "Live with Regis and Kelly." Oh, Kelly, be careful!

    • Speaking of ABC, today is WABC 770 AM's 9th annual Memorial Day Rewound... all oldies and old airchecks featuring the old WABC guard, all day long... all the jingles, the old commercials and all that reverb, too! Tune in and get schooled. Daaaaaan Ingram!

    • Tenants lucky enough to hold a lease on one of the country's largest apartment complexes, the twin developments of Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village, pay a fraction of the market rate. The savings allow a lifestyle unavailable to many middle-class New Yorkers, replete with vacation bungalows and kids in parochial school. Motherfuckers. But now residents of one of the last middle-class bastions in ever-more-expensive Manhattan say their new landlord is using Orwellian tactics in an attempt to drive them out and raise rents. Well, yeah.

    • Mom Arrested for Snorting Drugs in Front of Kid at a Wal-Mart... Suffolk police arrested a Farmingville woman for snorting heroin through a straw as she pushed her 3-year-old child in a shopping cart at Wal-Mart. Yes, but was it a crazy straw she took from the kids lemonade?

    • Venezuela's oldest private television station went off the air following President Hugo Chavez's decision to pull the plug on the popular channel harshly critical of the government, a move that sparked violent clashes between protesters and police... "Todo tiene su final" - "Everything Has Its End."

    • Barbra Streisand canceled her concert in Rome next month - a move that followed protests by Italian consumer groups angered by what they said were excessively high ticket prices. Uh, its stupid Babs not Fugazi, what the fuck did u expect?

    • A harrowing film about illegal abortion in Communist-era Romania beat 21 movies by well-known directors such as Quentin Tarantino, Ethan and Joel Coen, and Wong Kar-wai to win the Cannes Film Festival's top prize Sunday. Romanian director Cristian Mungiu's low-budget film, "4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days," depicts the horrors a student goes through to ensure her friend can have a secret abortion.

    • Charles Nelson Reilly, the Tony Award winner who later became known for his ribald appearances on the "Tonight Show" and various game shows, has died. He was 76. Reilly died Friday in Los Angeles of complications from pneumonia, his partner, Patrick Hughes, told the New York Times.

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