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Archive May 14 - May 24 2003
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Saturday, May 24
In the world of broadcasting holiday weekends normally mean three-to-four times the usual workload, so updates may be spotty over the next few days.

Comic Stuff: Comic Book Resources has a story and preview of Warren Ellis' upcoming science fiction miniseries Switchblade Honey. I laughed when I saw this "life sized" 16 inch tall Hulk head bust. For some strange, unfathomable reason the powers that be at Maxim have decided they need to chime in on the Lamest Superheroes Ever. Boys, I appreciate the attempt, but your way out of your league. Stick with providing young men too timid to purchase porn an affordable source of wet, meaty celebrity clevage and leave the ruthless condesension of leotarded fantasy figures to those who know what they're fucking talking about. Isn't there a shitty metal band or an Xtreme Sports yank-fest you could be covering?

Friday, May 23
A New Soul Ripe for Corruption: Bad Day gives a big "welcome" to our newest cast member Arden Rose Terapane, born Thursday morning. She came in at a svelte 6 lb, 12 oz and an impressive 20 inches long. Parents and dear friends Geri and Alex both come from hearty stock and are doing well. 

Earlier this week, between sessions of fretting over our increasingly intrusive government and gnashing my teeth trying to figure out which news stories were true, I opened my mailbox to discover the new Loompanics Unlimited catalog.
It had been a while since I had received one of these subversive tomes from the "Sellers of Unusual Books," full-to-bursting with conspiracies, methods of deception, and essays on lunatics. It warmed my heart to know that I still had the option of going underground and living below the radar if needed. The Loompanics website hosts an eye-opening articles page, and features several books that one can easily imagine being outlawed if the current political climate intensified.
As for me, I am not worried. There are enough freaks and cackling madmen with anarchy in their hearts to make an authoritarian coup way too much trouble.

Two very funny pieces from The Daily Probe: "Darwin Fish Reintroduced into Hostile Environment." and "Those Japs Are Up To Something!" Read and laugh.

The Cool Thing of the Week Award (which I just this second made up) goes to the seemingly gravity-defying Wrong Garden. For the sake of historical revisionism we'll say that the last two CTotWs (catchy, huh?) were the Rube Goldberg-esque Honda ad and the Spider Exoskeleton.

Thursday, May 22
Jeff is Sad: It looks like the Comedy Central show Insomnic with Dave Attell will be coming to an end after this upcoming season. The noble art of drinking was never so funny. (thanks to Pete for this)

Dark Horse Comics has some beautiful Frank Frazetta merchandise coming out this summer (the Zippo is my favorite). They also have a sweet-looking Conan bust on tap as well. While I'm at it, here's the Frazetta Online Gallery.

My ego-sense is twitching! Dan at Extrasonic must be talking about me again. He also linked to Marvel's promotional tease for Neil Gaiman's upcoming miniseries 1602, a story that somehow got past my Watcher-like powers of observation. (Dan, email me with your address, please)

Karl Kofoed's Galactic Geographic book came out this week. If you like your science fiction art cinematic and freaky, check it out. Might I also be so bold as to suggest a visit to Visions of Xenolympus, a somewhat similar project by myself and Brian Kirk that explores strange and wonderful locales on a mythical planet.

SF Crowsnest has an interview with author Greg Bear.

Weird Science: Here's a pair of stories about recent advances in the reseach of quantum computing. Some researches have also found a way to transform light into other useful forms of energy. Better Humans has posted an excellent essay called Posthuman Possibilities and the Future of Intelligent Life by José Cordeiro. More Lovecraftian horror is made manifest as a Florida physicist claims that dark matter comes from another dimension. Oh good.

The always-funny Landover Baptist Church has a great piece called How To Spot Atheists and Report them to the FBI. (Thanks to Ellen for this)

Wednesday, May 21
I have, in the last few days, been searching for and listening to a lot of science fiction radio shows on the web. I was thrilled to discover Cosmic Landscapes, a 24 hour channel that compiles SF shows from all around the country.

Other Science Fiction Stuff: The Alien Online gives us a peek at Michael Moorcock's future projects. SFF World interviews author Mark Levine. Ian Creasey of Strange Horizons explores the various imaginative modes of FTL spaceflight in  "Travel by Jargon."
And speaking of FTL, I found a neat site by Michael R. Feltz all about hyperspace, complete with a nice links page. Also discovered this little gallery of four dimensional shapes, with eye-bending animations no less, built by Andy Burbanks and Keith Beardmore.

Comic Stuff: Raymond Neal of Slush Factory chats with the legendary Gene Colan. Newsarama discusses current projects with Colleen Doran. Comicon talks to Chris Bachalo about his recent work.

Tuesday, May 20
"This blog highlights a plethora of Internet attractions of daily interest to science fiction lovers. Movies, TV, comics, books, technology, action figures, and lots of uncategorizable weirdness." That's how SciFi.com's Webguide describes this humble page. A big welcome to any new readers, as well as an invitation to visit the Amazing Colossal Links Pages and all the other goodies on this site.

I wonder if Metallica will, in fact, sue the Army for unauthorized use of their music to interogate Iraqi prisoners.

Cool-meter goes into the red: A hotel patterning itself after Fawlty Towers.

McFarlane Guide.com compares the recent US and Japanese Alien toys.

I haven't seen Matrix Reloaded yet, but I assume many of you did. Here is what science fiction writer Gregory Benford and fantasy writer John Shirley have to say about it at Locus Online.

Recommended Readin': Dave Barry chimes in on the rather twisted British modern art world.
Here's Colin McEnroe and Thomas Sowell on the Jayson Blair case.
Reason has posted a sobering excerpt from Jacob Sullum's new book Saying Yes dealing with some unpopular truths about heroin.
At Better Humans the subject of genetics is discussed again. When it comes to scientific literacy, James Hughes reminds us that repugnance isn't wisdom while Simon Smith points out that ignorance isn't bliss.
Comic Book Resources talks with Mike Carey about the future of Lucifer.
Frank Beecham of TV Technology really likes the new 5.1 Surround remaster of Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon.

Warren Ellis has linked to this very cool 1957 energy department promotional comic book called The Atomic Revolution. It is an unbridled romantic view of a high tech American future. It brought a tear to my eye.

Monday, May 19
It disturbs me when I see historical revisionists try to whitewash the atrocities commited during the persecution of the Lego people.

Here's a striking image of Stan Winston's upcoming 4 Horsemen figures.

Sunday, May 18
After a quite fruitful and personality-enriching twenty-five year relationship with alcohol, they have finally named a beer after me.

"It used to be universally recognized that all children should be savagely beaten on a regular basis." So begins the heart-warming essay titled The Care and Thrashing of Small Children at The Surly Heckler.

Philip Shropshire found a recent LA Weekly interview with one of my favorite writers Samuel Delany.

I've added several more miscellaneous sites to the Link Page, including The Lip Balm Addiction site, The Orphanage of Cast Off Mascots, The Periodic Table of Funk, the Shakespearean Insult Kit, Klingons for Christ, the Canadian World Domination headquarters, and a site that proves once and for all that a watched pot never boils.

Saturday, May 17 (Armed Forces Day)
Feel that thunderous rumbling in your clavical bones? That's Pascal Wyse of The Guardian exploring the musical uses of "infrasound".

Assorted Darwinian Items: Space.com has a story about a recent experiment in "virtual evolution." Bill McKibben of Orion Online looks at the redefinition of human in the realm of genetics. Paul at Geek Press found this curious Scientific American story about how a study of chain letters revealed some unexpected evolutionary principles.
All this talk of Darwin reminds me I haven't picked on Creationists in a while.

Comic Stuff: The new "You'll All Be Sorry" at Comic Book Resources takes the Onion route and delivers such news items as Alan Moore turning his talents to porn, and Batroc the Leaper being less popular than ever. Slush Factory chats with Lawrence Miles' about his upcoming book Faction Paradox. And we learned yesterday that Vertigo's Y: The Last Man has been optioned as a film.

There is also early buzz that Atlas Shrugged has been optioned (again).

Here's a few neat sites I stumbled across: The Power of 10, the Dull Men's Club, and the Dictionary of Imaginary Places.

Friday, May 16 (Full Moon)
Ah, the superheated methane winds, the toxic hydrocarbons, the sweet smell of ammonia in the morning, it must be summer on Neptune.

For a while now I've lusted after this obscenely oversized science fiction computer monitor in the Hammacher catalog, but my new favorite computer dream toy is this self contained workstation at PCE. I want to combine the two and place them both in a plexiglass sphere in the center of my living room.

Assorted Items: It was learned this week that the FBI spent years spying on Aaron Copeland. Acid Logic's Alex Kidd voices his admiration for Akira Kurosawa. The invaluable Infidels News Wire is looking for a new Webmaster. Figures.com has photos of an upcoming line of Aliens statues. You know those handmade buttons you always see at science fiction conventions? The ones that are cute, obnoxious, and condescending all at the same time? We now know their source.

The remarkable Starship Dimensions site now has a new URL. Bookmark it, and go play there often.

No Such Thing As Too Much Free Time: Do you fancy yourself an expert in the continuities of fictional characters? Then I insist you pay a visit to the website of Edgar Governo: Historian of Things That Never Were and prepare to be humbled.

Big kudos to Extrasonic for linking to me (and the high praise), Jesse Walker of Reason Hit & Run for crediting me on yesterday's AFA story, and Mark Vadnais for word on Arthur, a downloadable magazine that features a cover story about Alan Moore. Unfortunately none of the PDF Files seem to want to download correctly or print for me. Try your luck.

Thursday, May 15
And now a moment of silence for Robert Stack.

Check out this exceedingly cool spider-legged exoskeleton.

Comic Book Resources talks to writer Andy Diggle about his upcoming Vertigo series The Losers.
And speaking of comics (and losers), I found this at The Jesus Museum: last month some folks from the American Family Association attended the Pittsburgh Comic Con and were appalled at the amount of adult material available. The punch line is that they decided they needed to "convince" the Make A Wish Foundation (who raised money at an auction there) to sever all ties with the convention. There's even an email link to send scornful letters. My favorite part of the report is their implied dismissal of the repeated claim that adults read comics. Their outraged pot shots at the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund are fucking hilarious as well.

Just made my monthly jaunt over to Japanese Engrish, where I found such recent gems as this and this. That site seems constantly overwhelmed by new material.

Wednesday, May 14
And now a moment of silence for Noel Redding. It should be noted that the Washington Post had more extensive coverage than the long-irrelevant Rolling Stone.

Recommended Readin': Andrew Crumey of The Scotsman discusses the Sister Wendy School of criticism. At the Chronicle Review Paul Buhle takes a look at The New Scholarship of Comics. David Ratledge of Extropy.org asks "Can A Machine Be Made Self-Aware?" Keith Lockitch compares the looting of Iraqi museums to what's been going on lately in American museums.