Archive for June, 2005


Tip Number Three

I just know I’m not going to fulfill the challenge this month! Oh well. I’ll still post them as I think of them!

Let’s say you’re going on an extended vacation and probably won’t have any access to the internet as my online friend Jason Clark will soon find himself. What to do! You won’t be able to keep up on your blog or email friends or… chat or… look at websites or… or… whatever! Try bringing a small notebook with you, just something handy to have, then in the morning or evening sit down for just a few minutes and write down a few of the things you did that day (or the day before). Put a date on it, too. This can serve as a reminder for when you get back and have that glorious bandwidth back at your finger tips! Woot!

Of course I guess that doesn’t matter if you bring your laptop along. Just type it all up. But the idea is the same; write down short bits of what you did. It will jog your memory for the larger items you wanted to write about. Plus, in the end, it will help you explain to friends at work just what you did with your time while they were suffering covering your job.

This entry is part of the monthly Blogging Challenge for June.

2 Comments | Catergorized: geek  writing


Scientology Story Idea

With Tom Cruise recently berating Matt Lauer on TV recently (news, transcript) and promoting his belief in Scientology, I’ve been thinking about that cult and some ideas have sprung to mind. BTW, if anyone can point out where I can watch the whole thing online I’d really appreciate it.

First of all, they claim they are a religion. Yet one of the inherent aspects of religion is faith. Faith that the premise of the core doctrine is true, despite the unprovable nature of that doctrine. What separates this from a cult is that the nature of the cult is to argue in absolute terms and absolute truth, and is usually led by a single charismatic leader. Therefore Scientology isn’t a religion, it’s a cult. I would note also that by this definition what many of the Religious Right claim is very cultish, too. The point is that Scientology isn’t a religion and shouldn’t be recognized as one.

Second, I’ve always been amused that some think there’s a vast Jewish conspiracy to own and control Hollywood (or the entertainment business, if you want to generalize). Judging by the known list of current and former Scientologists, it might be better to accuse this little cult of trying to take it over.

Finally, an idea occurred to me about a story that could be written. L. Ron Hubbard was obviously upset with psychiatry, psychology, and anything dealing with the mind from a professional point of view. One of the stated goals of Scientology, in addition to eradicating war, crime and insanity, is to completely eradicate psychiatry in all its forms.

So the story revolves around an aging psychiatrist angsting about the case that got away, and all the trouble the patient caused. He’s read all the weird reports and seen all the dupes that follow him, and all because years and years ago he realized that Hubbard was gay, and Hubbard refused to accept that. Yet that paramilitary organization he created, his failure to maintain a healthy relationship with any of his wives, his paranoia, and his founding and spreading of his own personal cult are all symptomatic of the psychiatrist’s initial diagnosis.

And yes, I expect that this will piss off any Scientologists that come visiting. I’m not saying the story is true at all, only that it would make for an interesting story.

For tons of actual interesting reading concerning Scientology, please feel free to peruse Operation Clambake, a site dedicated to outing information about Scientology. There’s tons of interesting reading there. If nothing else read this bit.

4 Comments | Catergorized: thoughts  writing


Playing Go at VIZ

So a few people at VIZ are interested in the game Go. I think this is partly because we’re putting out the books Hikaru no Go, which is about (extremely simplified) a boy named Hikaru who learns how to play the game. It’s a good read, and has caused something of a sensation in Japan.

So, with some anxiety and anticipation, I went to lunch with a woman named Courtney and we played a teaching game to refresh her on the rules and, frankly, to get my brain working into the game again. I haven’t played, not even on the computer, since Todd and I played a couple years ago. As more people get interested we might even have enough people for a tournament. Nice!

2 Comments | Catergorized: friends  games  manga


Things From Referer Logs

I’ve been digging through my referer logs. Though some of what people are finding here through Google seems obscure and strange to me, some of it is pretty funny.

finger pictures. Nothing like being top of the heap for finger pictures!
hairism. Kind of a parody on racism. I wonder if I invented the term?
food in the old days. Ah, nostalgia.
“brandi shearer”. For a while I felt guilty because I held the number one spot for her name. I’m glad she took over. If she comes to town on tour, go see her!
chasedbydinosaurs. I’m not sure why folks can’t put spaces in their searches.
bamboo kendo sticks. This came about because I had a dream about flicka sticks, which are to my knowledge a complete creation of my sleeping brain.
homemade steadycam. I’m amazed how many people are looking to make their own. I made mine based on instructions I found on the web. It works pretty well once I figured out how to walk a bit more smoothly.
unmotivational. This one cracks me up. Hopefully no one thinks I’m unmotivated!
egyptian rat screw. Many people find me with this search. It seems a lot of people are playing.
burkah. WTF? I wrote an article called Burkah on the Bus. Never did I imagine that it would turn into a top contender for a religious fashion symbol.

I also discovered that this guy has been linking directly to a picture from my site. Dude, get your own image hosting. Don’t suck up my bandwidth. At least clearly give me credit on your site. Meanwhile just be thankful I didn’t replace the picture with something pornographic as other people often will when they discover things like this.

UPDATE 2006.10.01: Most of this is probably moot since I migrated everything from to this site. Hopefully I’ll start pulling in some of those number ones again!

Comments Off on Things From Referer Logs | Catergorized: geek  site


The American Astronaut

The American Astronaut Movie Poster
The American Astronaut
I am not known for my adventurous spirit when it comes to independent film. I’ve seen some I really liked, but rarely do I go and seek out the next cool thing. This is why I have friends, right? I got an invitation to go see The American Astronaut from intrepid explorers Kurt and Erik at Kurt’s Fortress of Solitude this last Saturday. Without this invitation my yearly quota of at least one independent film would probably go unfulfilled.

The movie was written, directed and stars Cory McAbee who until recently lived in San Francisco. In fact this movie was written when he lived above the Hotel Utah. This is Cory’s first film and it does not show. The photography is tight and completely black and white, and the acting is professional. Many of the actors are regulars on Broadway and if you’re into theater you might know a few names. The effects were lacking, but then a good story doesn’t need high end CGI effects to detract from itself.

You would think that the story, being so painfully linear, would not be interesting or could only be told in a limited mode: our hero gets a job delivering something to one place, picks up new product to deliver to another place, all the while being pursued by his nemesis. Yet while the story is simple, the telling is not. It is a combination of gritty realism and mental surrealism with a touch of Firefly and Cowboy Bebop thrown in for good measure. The dialog is just off center enough to catch your attention and there is an undercurrent of the whimsical throughout.

Music plays a huge role in the movie and, of course, Cory’s band did all the music. The movie is dominated by the music and most of it is quite good. Of note are the two henchmen’s song in the bathroom. I think that’s the point where the movie really started finding its groove.

Cory is already at work drafting his next film, called The Werewolf Hunters of the Midwest. I’m actually looking forward to seeing it. In the meantime The American Astronaut is definitely worth checking out and is for sale on this website along with other paraphernalia.

Comments Off on The American Astronaut | Catergorized: movies


Writing Writing Writing

At some point I hope to set aside time to start writing a project I’ve been doing research on for a long time. Too long, actually, and it’s driving me crazy. Probably in the fall I’ll have that time provided I discipline myself enough to sit down and do the work involved.

Anyways, I found a ton of links while perusing M.C. De Marco’s webpage which I wanted to keep for reference. Here they are in no particular order.

One: Writing advice from Chris Moriarty. Covers a lot of the basics. Has a great list of recommended reading.

Two: Here are two methods (not answers) on how some people write short stories (the Bubble Method) and novels (the Snowflake Method). Both look interesting. I’ll have to read these again and see how they will help.

Three: Finally, two links on world building, which addresses specific issues around the project I’m working on. The first is a general guide to world building. It is not entirely comprehensive, but it is a great start. I’ve actually seen this list before, but I’ve never seen it fleshed out so much. The second link is a short guide to constructed languages, which is something I’ve been interested in since I first read The Lord of the Rings when I was a wee lad. Short and concise.

OK, back to your regularly scheduled life.

Comments Off on Writing Writing Writing | Catergorized: worldbuilding  writing


Affinity for Politicians

Politicians are supposed to represent the people, right? They are supposed to be “of the people”, right? How come I don’t feel a spit of affinity for a single politician I’ve ever heard of alive today?

Sometimes I feel like I’m the only one who cares and that’s a sad, pathetic statement on American political culture.

3 Comments | Catergorized: political  thoughts


Sick of Politicized Iraq

I’m so tired of hearing about our military in relation to Iraq. The way I see it is thus. President Bush led us there under false pretenses (WMD, terrorist links, enforcing UN resolutions, whatever) and there is apparently evidence that he wanted to go in there before September 11th, 2001 gave him the support he needed to do what he wants (Downing Street Memo and various testimony). It is wrong, possibly immoral, possibly impeachable (though not likely). No one who reads this blog will think I like Bush because I don’t.

Read the rest of this entry…

2 Comments | Catergorized: grrr  political


Tsunami Warning!

It’s 9PM. We have a tsunami warning along the coastal Bay Area. Apparently the epicenter was out at sea west of Eureka. They are saying to be wary from about 9:20PM to 10:20PM. I doubt the post will be a good warning to many out there, but if you get it before the time period and know someone along the coast, give them warning.


So they just cancelled the alert. Whew! What a strange thing to have your regularly scheduled program interrupted by the emergency alert system. OK, back to… well, nothing.

3 Comments | Catergorized: life  san francisco  science


Despite My Best Intentions

On Saturday after the blogger conference at KRON I had every intention of heading out with Ann and finding a pair of boots to replace my aging Redwings. Actually, not so much to replace them as to augment them since they are still in amazingly fine shape despite years of abuse.

And I really was set on this plan. I’d even mentioned it to Uncle Roger at the conference. Yet despite my best intentions I ended up going and buying a pair of Keen sandals. Nothing too fancy, but these, in black.

So far reaction from those who know me have ranged from barely contained laughter to confusion to astonishment. If I get any other good reactions I’ll pass them along. Meanwhile I’m glad to have them so my toes have a chance to air out. If you smell something strange and disconcerting right now, that might be them…

3 Comments | Catergorized: fashion  geek  life
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