Friend Bob Gelinas turned me on to Toonopedia.com. Meanwhile, several blogs posted links to the Big Cartoon Database. It warms my heart to know that there are two such exhaustive sources for all my animation research needs, even though it was the strangelive actionshows of my youth that really twisted me.
Bruce Sterling has found a site dedicated to Dead Malls. I've always been fascinated by the fact that the Connecticut/Western Massachusetts region is rife with abandoned malls, theaters, and amusement parks. Now we just need supervillains to set up their secret headquarters there.
Science fiction technology continues to manifest itself. This week: Smart paint with chameleon-like qualities.
I have a low opinion of most forms of fandom, so I had a few belly laughs from this story on a Jimmy Buffet fan convention. I don't know what tickled me more, the fact that these pudgy, pretentious, tequila-soaked boomers in floral print call their little shindig The Meeting of the Minds, or the fact that one of the attendees interviewed states his occupation as "a poet-carpenter and member of Parrot Heads chapters in Key West." My only brush with these idiots was the night I attended a Bowie/Nine Inch Nails show, and I arrived at the music theater to discover it had been trashed by Buffet fans the night before. Lawn turf was torn up, seats were damaged, and there was small fire damage everywhere. It is disheartening for an industrial music crowd to try and top that.
Sunday, November 3
Newsstories and messages about the Godless March on Washington are filtering in. The consensus: turnout was moderate, religious protesters were light, and it needed to be promoted more. C-Span had a crew there, so they'll probably show footage from it after the elections.
So, if I understand correctly, NASA won't fund antimatter propulsion for cheap deep-space exploration, but they'll fund a campaign to convince conspiracy theorists that we actually went to the moon! I recommend not thinking about this one too hard, you'll just hurt yourself.
There is something ominous and simply Lovecraftian about the announcement that astronomers have found an immeasurably ancient relic star.
I enjoy Matt Fraction's weekly column at Comics Resources. This week's was accompanied by photos of an old-style box robot going through his daily routine: walking down the street, playing catch, going to a strip club...
And lastly, just when I thought it was too easy to do political humor, someone turns me on to Scrappleface.
Thursday, October 31
Geekculture.com has posted photos of Mac O'Lanterns, pumpkins with creepy realistic etched images of Apple personalities like Steve Wozniak and Ellen Feiss.
Jon Henley of the Guardian writes: "Leading Paris museums, including the Louvre and the Musée d'Orsay, are to move thousands of priceless artworks from their basement storerooms because of a feared "superflood" in the French capital this winter. " Read More.
Patrick Goldstein of CalanderLive admits "If you were looking for a knee-jerk defender of artists' rights, you'd find me first in line. So when I started hearing about CleanFlicks, ClearPlay and the other Utah companies that have developed technology to edit out profanity, sex and violence from home videos, I was appalled by the idea of people chopping up movies simply to fit their moral sensitivities." Oh, but then it gets interesting. Read More
Tuesday, October 29
TNN has cancelled Robot Wars. Very bummed. It was my favorite of the arena combat shows. However Full Metal Challenge and Monster Garage are both up to the task of filling the void. How can you beat epic mecha carnage? It appeals to both the engineering geek and the viscera-fueled spectator.
The future shock continues as scientists prep to test a transatlantic internet tactile interface. Here it comes, people: The end of dating, the end of traditional porn, the end of going out. Our days and nights will be spent cocooned within a full-immersion chassis. Our limbs will atrophy with each successive generation. It is sooooo over.
Monday, October 28
Updated Nov. 15: The website for the Manray Club in Cambridge, MA, has a teaser for the first annual Miss Gothic Massachusetts pageant. It's listed for January 24, 2003, and they are accepting applications online. Will there be a Miss Congeniality? Is anything taboo in the talent contest? Is a swimsuit competition out of the question? We here at Bad Day will be following this story closely in coming months.
File this under "I'm always the last to know:"
Apparently my great and unconditional affection for the number of strippers and former strippers I count among my dear friends is in conflict with my wholesale contempt for unions and their corrupt practices. The source of this conflict? The Exotic Dancers Alliance.
I just looked at the site for the new George Clooney remake of Solaris. Christ, are there any good design people left in Hollywood? Every piece of set work looks loosely based on something else. This is a Stanislaw Lem story we're talking about here, one full-to-bursting with weirdness and illusion. Spending millions of dollars to shit out another generic Aliens cum 2010 environment is just cowardly. As bored as I was by Earth: Final Conflict and Andromeda, at least they were never short on strange hardware and imaginative sets. One of the reasons why I can't bring myself to watch films anymore is the volume of raw incompetentcy that passes for "inspired" creative vision these days.
Sunday, October 27
I read with glee that the Chronicle of Higher Education has purchased Arts & Letters Daily and put it back on the web. This news service of cultural and intellectual tidbits has consistantly managed to bring light to some buried issues. Nice to see the good guys win.
My brief correspondence with Master Annotater Jess Nevins has led to a few of my paltry observations about the cover of issue 3 of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen Volume 2 being included on the latest update of his site. In other LoEG news Comics Continuum has published photos from a special on the upcoming movie, including this rather silly shot of a guy in a Mr. Hyde body suit. He looks like Popeye. I do not have high hopes for this film, and fear that it may spin off into a WB cartoon.
ToyMania has published a photo of the Lord of The RingsTreebeard the Ent action figure, giving us an idea of what he will look like in The Two Towers.
I have found myself mildly addicted to the testimonials recounted with passion and absurdity at Read Comics in Public.com. I pull out and peruse my comics often, when sitting in the diner or waiting for an oil change. The responses I get range from disgust (a lady reading a Jackie Collins novel turned her nose up at me as I read Transmetropolitan) to sad attempts at conversation ("Duuuuude, are you into X-Men?). Occasionally I'll get someone who shows genuine interest or asks to look at one. Try it some time.
David Brooks of The Atlantic has penned a too-true article on the misuse of self esteem. It is a facsinating social phenomenon to witness: people devoid of talent, lacking any measurable personality traits, and flat-lining on the charisma meter, who still manage to speak and act as if you enjoy being with them. Idiots walk among us.
While looking up teaching aids for a lesson on Ben Franklin, Jennifer discovered a Virtual Armonica. She has suggested that I compile an entire virtual orchestra of obscure instruments for the links page. Why don't I come up with ideas like that?
Just in time for the 30th anniversary of man leaving the moon for the last time, NASA unveiled some plans for the future. Nothing really new here: big centrifugal space stations and LaGrange colonies and all the stuff we were supposed to have in space by the year 2000 but didn't thanks to a consortium of small minds and mediocrity-mongers. Although oxygen conservation, muscle atrophy, and the effect of acceleration on the body are all very important in the further study of human space exploration, I'm glad someone is getting to the important stuff.
And now, will the bibliophiles among you please bow your heads and join me in a moment of silence as we pay our respects and mourn the loss of Avenue Victor Hugo Books in Boston.
Remember those haughty, advancedalienraces on Space: 1999 who always had flat transparent controls? They would operate their technology by deftly waving their hands over it. They knew machines had to have style.
They also had domineering women in hot outfits with electro-whips. What role they'll play in the singularity remains to be seen. Pray with me, brothers...
Speaking of women, the yummy Dita Von Teese has completely re-vamped (HA!) her site in the wake of her appearance in Playboy. I am hoping she can be lured to the east coast for more burlesque shows sometime soon.