Saturday, December 29, 2007

What It's Like to Be 7 or What Will You Do Next Saturday?

What? What? What?

A Soup to Warm You

One of my favorite things about the fall/winter months is making soup. I usually make one a week. Thai-style chicken and rice soup is our absolute favorite - velvety and with just the right amount of fire. The coconut milk makes it comforting when the days are dark and far too short. I made it on Christmas Eve for Roger and me. It's great with a beer (but what isn't?). Word of advice: Prepping and making the broth for the base of the soup usually takes me an hour, so if you're in a hurry forget it. I recommend making it over the course of a couple of days. That also gives the flavor some time to expand.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Cage: Organ 2/ASLSP

Since September 5, 2000, which is the 88th birthday of the avantgarde composer and artist John Cage, the slowest and longest concert that the world has ever heard has been playing: ORGAN2/ASLSP As Slow aS Possible that means this piece of music, for the organ, will be performed for 639 years in the church of St. Burchardi in Halberstadt.

How the Decider Rolls

President Bush had “no recollection” of being made aware of the tapes’ destruction before Thursday, when General Hayden briefed him on the matter.

Q: When it came to Iran, you said in October, on October 17th, you warned about the prospect of World War III, when months before you made that statement, this intelligence about them suspending their weapons program back in '03 had already come to light to this administration. So can't you be accused of hyping this threat?...

THE PRESIDENT: David, I don't want to contradict an august reporter such as yourself, but I was made aware of the NIE last week. In August, I think it was Mike McConnell came in and said, we have some new information. He didn't tell me what the information was; he did tell me it was going to take a while to analyze.


Mr. Bush acknowledged one major failing of the early occupation of Iraq when he said of disbanding the Saddam Hussein-era military, "The policy was to keep the army intact; didn't happen."

But when Mr. Draper pointed out that Mr. Bush's former Iraq administrator, L. Paul Bremer III, had gone ahead and forced the army's dissolution and then asked Mr. Bush how he reacted to that, Mr. Bush said, "Yeah, I can't remember, I'm sure I said, 'This is the policy, what happened?' " But, he added, "Again, Hadley's got notes on all of this stuff," referring to Stephen J. Hadley, his national security adviser.

The book's opening anecdote tells of an unnamed CIA briefer who flew to Bush's Texas ranch during the scary summer of 2001, amid a flurry of reports of a pending al-Qaeda attack, to call the president's attention personally to the now-famous Aug. 6, 2001, memo titled "Bin Ladin Determined to Strike in US." Bush reportedly heard the briefer out and replied: "All right. You've covered your ass, now."

Saturday, November 24, 2007


From Hal Hartley's Henry Fool.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Stuck in the Wick of It

I'd like to spend a few moments talking about microfiber. It has a creepy sort of ubiquity that could potentially alter our culture - think Velcro or polyester. How easy is it to find 100% cotton socks? (Right. I thought so.) If Buck Henry wrote The Graduate today, he'd substitute microfiber for plastic.

Sure microfiber is made of some magic substance that somehow deflects sticky kid fingers and it's made from fibers 200 times finer than human hair. But is it attractive? Does it feel remotely of this earth. No mssr's et madames, it does not. Still, we just bought two couches made of the stuff. Did I say resistance is futile (or in this case- resistance is textile? Oh. Boo.)

But, you say- those microfiber towels and sponges are groovy because they naturally attract dirt and dust. Well, I've found that they only do that when your hand is moving the cloth in the general direction of the dust. Like it doesn't work if the cloth is in the closet with the cleaning products and the dust is in the living room. See: not as magical as you might think. Still, you say, they're good for the planet, no more using all those paper towels. Okay. I'll give you that one. Oh, don't forget it's great for performance apparel because of it's amazing wicking ability. Right. If I had amazing wicking ability I'd be popular too.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Pushing Daisies

I watched Pushing Daisies for the first time last week because it was recommended here. I love it. One: because Ned, who can touch things and bring them back to life, runs a pie shop. Not only that it's called the Pie Hole. Isn't that great? Two: it's an opportunity to visit the set of the my beloved Gilmore Girls. Yes! That's right. The whole set is there- lock, stock and gazebo. Three: the writing and the surrealistic style. It's on Wednesdays at 8pm.

The Possibilities are Endless

My 3 year old daughter, Olivia, has a couple of new catch phrases. The first is, "don't try this at home." Say she's wearing her dad's slippers and hanging upside down from the rocking footstool - that would be an instance where this phrase applies. Say she's on the dining room floor trying to slide her legs up the wall while holding onto a balloon or a baby or a bag of cereal - again, the phrase would apply.

The other new phrase is a bit more complicated in nature and in execution (so to speak). Say I tell her she can't jump on the new couch. She'll reply, "When you die, and Dad dies, and everyone in the world dies, and they don't come back: Carter, Marshall, and I will jump on the couch." Or say she's riding in her car seat and we're on the way to her Dad's office she might say something like, "When you die, and Dad dies, and everyone in the world dies, and my baby pretends to die, and no one comes back: I'm going to Taco Bell." She coined this phrase today and this is her accumulated list for the past 3 hours, plus the following - eat oatmeal cookies, eat a chocolate lollipop, buy a Barbie, sleep on all the beds at the mattress store. She's going to be one busy girl.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Today's Pie is Envy.

And an American dollop (and we know how big those dollops are, don't we?) of admiration for Chris Boyd's 3 part interview with Laurie Anderson. Lucky, lucky boy.




Monday, November 05, 2007

Stanford Storytelling Project

I don't usually listen to the radio. If I do, I search for those obscure stations that have a broadcast radius of about a mile. So. College and high school radio mostly. Tonight I found or rather rediscovered 90.1 (KZSU) - the Stanford radio station. The program was from the Stanford Storytelling Project and tonight's topic was about the roles animals play in our lives. It's on every Monday at 6pm or you can get the podcast on itunes. If you haven't checked out Stanford itunes- well my friend, you don't know what you're missing. There are lectures by Frances Moore Lappé, the Dalai Lama, Al Gore, Calvin Trillin, Henry David Hwang, and Wallace Stegner among others. And it's free! How great is that?

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Lines I Wish I'd Written

From Dora the Explorer.
Dora: (to Bennie the bull.) Can you give us a ride to the nut farm in your go-cart?
Before this my favorite line was from The Station Agent.
Olivia: Can I at least give you a ride back to your train station? The hotdog guy told me you lived there.
Hmm. Interesting that they both involve transportation and food.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Aaargh, You Scurvy Pirate!

My seven year old son has become concerned about coming down scurvy after he and his friend read about pirates in a Stephen Beisty cross-section book. This prompted him to try oranges. Unfortunately after touching one section he was repulsed by the texture and refused to eat it. Still he 's uneasy about the prospect of succumbing to such an illness. He asked about symptoms of scurvy the other night while I was making dinner.

C: What does Vitamin C do anyway? (He scoffs, trying to shake off his fear.)
E: Oh, you know, it helps the body create collagen.
C: What's that?
E: It makes up about every part of your body - your muscles, bones, eyes, teeth. That kinda thing.
C: Well, what happens when people get scurvy? (He starts giggling.) Do they lose their muscles? Do their eyes fall out? And their teeth?
E: Well, yeah. It's a serious disease.
C: Do they die?
E: They used to, but now we know that Vitamin C can prevent scurvy. There's absolutely no reason to die from scurvy these days.
C: Are there other foods besides oranges that have Vitamin C?
E: Sure. Tomatoes.
C: Yuck. What else?
E: Umm. Broccoli. Lettuce (as I make a salad).
C: Mom? I'm going to try lettuce tonight.
E: Really? That's great.
C: I'll try one piece.

Later. At dinner. Carter takes a quick bite of lettuce.

C: I like it. It tastes like apple. It's really good (as he sereptitiously put the lettuce on his napkin).
E: Why did you put the lettuce on your napkin?
C: Dad? Did you know that-
E: Carter? Why did you put your lettuce on the napkin?
C: I don't want it on my plate. It has salad dressing on it. Can I have it plain?
R: Sure. There's more lettuce.
E: No. We don't have any more plain lettuce.
C: Can I have it plain next time?
E: Just remember. You're going to have to eat a lot of lettuce if you want to prevent scurvy.

It's come to this. Threatening my child with scurvy. I will say this. It's gotten him interested in the properties of food. At the grocery store he asks me what vitamins are in certain foods. Like in the checkout line the other day, Carter asked me about garlic.

C: Can garlic save your life?
E: Well, it has properties that help combat certain diseases - it can boost immunity.

The checkout guy looks at me -

CG: Boy, that's an awkward question, isn't it?
E: How so?
CG: Well, you don't think vegetables can actually - they have things that save your life?
E: What vitamins and minerals? You don't believe in vitamins and minerals?
CG: Sure, I mean, I know that. But you know, garlic is just- if you didn't know the answer to his question you could just as easily say phytochemicals. (To Carter) Garlic has phytochemicals which is just a fancy way of saying plant chemicals.

The checkout guy looks up at me and winks. Ah. My friends. This is what we call a teaching moment. Some days I allow these moments to pass and become part of the noise. But in this case, I decide a smackdown is in order.

E: Do you know what those chemicals are?
CG: No.
E: Did you know they can be broken down into alkaloids like caffeine - I assume you drink coffee? Does it stimulate your nervous system or is that just your imagination? Or there are carotenes like lycopene which acts as an antioxidant? Or phenolic acids like capsaicin which can help relieve arthritic symptoms? Do you have problems with vampires?
CG: (rendered speechless)
E: See. Garlic works on many levels. I can't believe you work at Whole Foods.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Is It Just Me?

I was driving by the local pumpkin patch yesterday and saw this.

Yep. It's for the kiddies. Nothing says tasteless like an inflatable Titanic slide.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Chaos is A Friend of Mine

The Top Ten Most Incomprehensible Bob Dylan Interviews of All Time can be found here.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Recent Additions to My Skill Set

I have a confession. I didn't learn to blow my nose until I was in my thirties. I think it was when I was pregnant for the first time. People tried to teach me, but I never quite caught on. We didn't have the internet then (back in the 80's) - so I didn't see this. My neighbor claims she didn't learn to sneeze until she was in her 20's. She was afraid it would hurt so she held her nose and kind of squeaked. I didn't like the feeling in my eardrums when I tried, so I gave up. This might be because I had a hole in my eardrum when I was child and it was incredibly painful. I mean I can't think of any other reason. Except this is yet another life skill my parents didn't impart to me. Come to think of it, I can't recall them ever blowing their nose. We never had Kleenex in our house. Am I a mutant?

Incidentally, this discussion came up because we were discussing how difficult it is to teach our children to blow their noses. I'm determined to impart this skill to them before they leave for college.

Found this little animation by Alexandre Alexeieff entitled Le Nez based on Gogol's The Nose. Enjoy!

What life skill should I conquer next? Well, anger management is an ongoing process. I can change a tire. Butcher a chicken. Make a fish costume. Perhaps yodeling?

Or whistling? Or both? Both?

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Finding Your Level

My son was in a bad mood yesterday at the park and told me that he wanted to be a reporter and tell everyone that the park needed to be cut down. I tried to engage him by getting him to write a story about it, but that only made him more frustrated. He told me, "Well, I'll just be the President. They don't have to know anything or listen to anybody. They can do whatever they want. I can have this park cut down then."

Thanks, George, for bankrupting our children's future and their minds.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Good News/Bad News

  • Jimmy Carter may be elected one more time.
  • George H. W. Bush may be elected one more time.
  • Bill Clinton may not be elected president again, as he has been elected twice already.
  • George W. Bush may not be elected president again, as he has been elected twice already.

Thank the 12th and 22nd Amendments.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Tell It

For many months after Leta’s birth I felt like I was going through an identity crisis, even after my hospital stay when I could think about things more clearly. I didn’t know I was going through it then, but I had many symptoms of a mid-life crisis, including excessive drinking and lashing out at the most important people in my life. I can look back at those months now and see what was going on, that suddenly I was a mother, but didn’t feel like I thought mothers were supposed to feel. It was as if overnight I had gone from working in the mail room to becoming the CEO, and I had no idea how to run a company. I didn’t want to run a company. (More here.)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Silicon Valley Impeachment Coalition

The Silicon Valley Impeachment Coalition (SVIC) and friends met with Meri Maben, Mike Honda's District Director, on August 27th in Campbell, CA. Mike Honda is the "representative" in the US House of Representatives from the 15th District of California (San Jose, Campbell, Los Gatos, Gilroy, Cupertino, Milpitas, Santa Clara).

Ms. Maben was presented with a letter from the SVIC including the following questions:
1) Why are you continuing to support an illegal war of invasion and occupation based on fabrication and lies?

2) Despite their seizure of unchecked executive power that is expressly forbidden by the Constitution, why do you continue the de facto pardon of Cheney and Bush by tabling impeachment? Why are you jeopardizing the future of our Republic by your silence?

3) What more would Cheney and Bush have to do in order for you to support the articles of impeachment?

(More here.)

Arguments Against Impeachment Don't Stand Up

Impeachment should be a hot topic in the halls of Congress and on the front pages of newspapers. But, since House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney "off the table," most Democrats, including Silicon Valley Reps. Anna Eshoo, Mike Honda and Zoe Lofgren, are marching to Pelosi's drum beat.

Because of the media's self-imposed gag order on impeachment, most Americans are unaware that articles of impeachment to indict Cheney have been submitted to the House Judiciary Committee. The House Resolution Articles (HR 333) were submitted by Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, months ago. Since then, 19 Democrats, including Bay Area Reps. Lynn Woolsey of Santa Rosa, Barbara Lee of Oakland and Sam Farr of Salinas have signed on. (More here.)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

More Blackwater

BAGHDAD, Tuesday, Sept. 18 — Blackwater USA, an American contractor that provides security to some of the top American officials in Iraq, has been banned from working in the country by the Iraqi government after a shooting that left eight Iraqis dead and involved an American diplomatic convoy.

A spokesman for the Ministry of Interior, Brig. Gen. Abdul Karim Khalaf, said Monday that authorities had canceled the company’s license and that the government would prosecute the participants. But under the rules that govern private security contractors here, the Iraqis do not have the legal authority to do so.

The shooting took place in Baghdad on Sunday, but the details were still unclear, and American officials stopped short of saying whether the Blackwater guards in the diplomatic motorcade had caused any of the deaths. Bombs were going off in the area at the time, and shots were fired at the convoy, American officials said.

“There was a firefight,” said Sean McCormack, the principal State Department spokesman. “We believe some innocent life was lost. Nobody wants to see that. But I can’t tell you who was responsible for that.” (More here.)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Laurie Anderson: National Debt PSA

Think it's time for the some financial counseling?

Sunday, September 09, 2007


Seward Street Slides

Why hasn't anyone told me about this?

At Seward & Douglass Streets in San Francisco

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Let me say now that I have never walked into, say, Daily Grind, and found athletes scattered around the tables, performing squat thrusts, crunches, push-ups, or counting out sets of curls. Nor have I seen seamstresses roll out bolts of cloth, cut out patterns, then whip out their sewing machines. I’ve not seen veterinarians haul in their sick canines, pull them out of portable pet carriers, and administer rabies and parvo vaccinations. There have been exactly zero potters working their wheels, zero taxidermists stuffing their bobcats, zero toxicologists using petri dishes to play checkers, zero circus performers practicing their knife throwing, zero pilots working some kind of virtual reality take-off-and-landing apparatus, and zero exotic dancers using the sugar and cream kiosk as some kind of barre. One time I saw a general practitioner trying to drum up free breast exams, but he got kicked out.

So what’s with all the so-called writers thinking that their craft is some kind of spectator sport?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

You Have My Permission

To stop what you're doing right now and do a little dance.

Glad to help out.

Sunday, August 26, 2007


Yes. That's Simon McBurney with the clipboard.

Where Do I Get This Notebook?

Mike Figgis Notebook (Moleskine)

Just Found:
Moleskine Pocket Japanese Book

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Alice Waters and the Edible School Yard

In Transit

On the way to the ice cream store my 3 year daughter and 7 year old son engaged in one of their favorite topics of conversation:

O: How many times do you get dead?
C: Once. You only die once. You live once and you die.
Me: Some people believe in reincarnation. That you live life over and over again.
C: Yeah. I've heard of it. That happens with cats.

Monday, August 20, 2007


C: Mom? When you were a kid did they have gaming systems?
E: No.
C: When did you get a gaming system?
E: When I was in college.
C: What was it?
E: An Atari.
C: What was your favorite game?
E: Megomania.
C: Mom? Did they have TV?
E: Yes.
C: Did you have elevators?

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Top 10 Pop Up Books

Favorites of Robert Sabuda and Matthew Reinhart

Way to Go, You Lame-Ass Democrats

Broad new surveillance powers approved by Congress this month could allow the Bush administration to conduct spy operations that go well beyond wiretapping to include — without court approval — certain types of physical searches on American soil and the collection of Americans’ business records, Democratic Congressional officials and other experts said.

Administration officials acknowledged that they had heard such concerns from Democrats in Congress recently, and that there was a continuing debate over the meaning of the legislative language. But they said the Democrats were simply raising theoretical questions based on a harsh interpretation of the legislation.

They also emphasized that there would be strict rules in place to minimize the extent to which Americans would be caught up in the surveillance.

The dispute illustrates how lawmakers, in a frenetic, end-of-session scramble, passed legislation they may not have fully understood and may have given the administration more surveillance powers than it sought. (more here)

Firedoglake had this to say:

I don’t know which claim is less credible: Is it the Administration’s argument, which Risen/Lichtblau report without comment, that they never intended such an overly broad gutting of FISA and do not intend to interpret the new statute that way, even though we know the DNI McConnell reportedly agreed to a narrower statute worked out with Congressional Democrats, only to have that version replaced by a much broader bill written by the White House? Or is it the Democrats claiming they are surprised that the Administration so badly misled them? How many examples of total duplicity does it take before the Democrats learn they cannot trust this Administration on any matter and should never cave to any Administration threat, especially when Constitutional rights are directly at stake?

The facts reported by Risen/Lichtblau are appalling on several levels. Above all, they confirm that even ignoring the leadership failures to coordinate their strategies in the final days before passage, Congressional Democrats were recklessly irresponsible in hastily passing a bill they failed to read and understand and still cannot explain to the public. They passed it even though they knew that the bill’s subject matter involved critical issues of Constitutional rights, individual and business privacy, and problematic domestic spying by the NSA, an organization that was never meant to spy on American citizens.

The Democrats also knew the Administration’s history in willfully violating the warrant requirements of FISA, and they knew the Administration has yet to explain what it is doing and how it can be legally justified. They knew the Administration had engaged in activities that were so blatantly unlawful that the previous Attorney General, the acting Attorney General and the Director of the FBI were prepared to resign if the activities continued. Yet knowing all this, they passed a bill written entirely by the Administration and never vetted through hearings that gutted FISA, a 28 year old statute that had been carefully crafted and updated after extensive public hearings. They recklessly gutted a statute designed to protect our rights against government abuses that had occurred during the Nixon and prior administrations, abuses that, given the Bush/Cheney regime’s history and statements, the Democrats knew were probably at risk here. (It only gets better. Check it out here.)

Yes. It must be difficult to live without a spine. Sell-out Democrats.

How many times do I have to write this article? How many times will these same Democrats give in to the worst president in history? So, this time, they caved on FISA. And they caved big time.

The president has been running an illegal warrantless wiretapping program since 2001. He has been continually and brazenly breaking the FISA law. He finally submitted the program to the FISA court recently. And a FISA judge said earlier this year that the program was not legal. Now how do the Democrats hold the president accountable for breaking this federal law?

Did they impeach him for high crimes and misdemeanors? Did they censure him? Did they cut off funding? No, not only did they not do any of these patently obvious things, but instead, they turned around and changed the law to give him the authority to ignore the courts. How do you not call them weaklings? How am I supposed to take it easy on them? How can this possibly be justified?

They made his illegal actions legal in retrospect. Instead of holding him accountable, they gave him a blank check. If all of this wasn't bad enough, they even removed the provision that the warrantless wiretapping be about an Al Qaeda operative or in some way linked to terrorism. So, the president now has BROADER authority to wiretap anyone who makes or receives a foreign call about ANYTHING.

You have got be asking yourself, why did they do this?! Do they know something we don't? And the answer is unequivocally - no! They know a lot less than you do. They are under the ridiculous assumption that voting against this president on any national security matter would hurt them politically.

You ass clowns, he is the least popular president in history! Nixon spent nowhere near this much time at a 25% approval rating. In fact, when Nixon got to be this unpopular, he was forced to resign. Can you imagine Democrats capitulating to Nixon on critical legislation days before his resignation? (more here)

Friday, August 03, 2007

Tom Hayden Interview

...we have to undermine the basis of terrorism which is humiliation and inequality. Most of our current leaders put all of their emphasis on security and only serve up rhetoric about inequality. I want to turn it around. I’d put 90 percent of the attention on inequality and ten percent on defense, because we already have a defense budget that is bigger than everybody else’s on earth. We spend 40 billion on intelligence and we are still clueless. (Read the rest here).

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Christopher Walken Roasts A Chicken

Click here.

I remember that. I was talking to him and I said how great it would be if actors had a tail because I have animals and a tail is so expressive. On a cat you can tell everything. You can tell if they're annoyed. You can tell whether they're scared. - Christopher Walken
I had to edit this post because when the video was embedded the music came on every time I went to the blog and it was driving me nuts. So now, you must do the clicky thing. But I said that.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Blow Job

Dear Ms. Spren:

Thank you for your letter concerning impeachment proceedings against Vice President Richard Cheney. I appreciate the time you took to write and welcome the opportunity to respond.

In our most recent elections, the American people expressed clear disapproval with the path this country was on. They are tired of partisan politics and of an Administration that pays little heed to the wishes of the American people. They want-and deserve-a Congress that holds the Administration accountable and fulfills its Constitutional responsibility to check and balance the Executive branch. I share this sentiment and am determined to work hard and across party lines in the United States Senate to promote issues that are of real concern to most Americans, including the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, homeland security, global warming, and lobbying and election reform.

At this time, however, I believe that impeachment proceedings against President Bush or Vice President Cheney will only divide the country even further, frustrating our hopes for a meaningful change in direction, while having little chance of success.

I have been deeply disappointed by many of this Administration's actions and have been outspoken in those instances. Nevertheless, given the challenges our country faces I believe that we need to focus on constructive and cooperative steps that would lead us in the right direction.

Again, thank you for your letter. If you have any further questions or comments, please contact my office in Washington, D.C. at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.

Sincerely yours,
Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Cindy Sheehan vs. Nancy Pelosi

Cindy Sheehan vows to challenge Nancy Pelosi for her house seat if Pelosi doesn't give the go-ahead to start impeachment proceedings against Bush. Read her article here.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

The Beatles and The Bard

I have a wish list of Shakespearian actors I know I'll never get to see. John Wilkes Booth is one. Moe Howard of "Three Stooges" fame was a reputable Bard actor before he opted for a steady paycheck. The Beatles? I didn't even know they could be listed, but watch them from this 1964 U.K. tv show by clicking HERE.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Lulu's Back in Town

Mere Innocents? ... Clowns of the Apocalypse?
You be the judge as Lemmy and Figgy perform "Lulu's Back in Town"

What The Dog Ate

My son's dinner.
(Mac -n- Cheese and a turkey burger.)

Monday, June 25, 2007

Help Save The Lorraine Hansberry

The Lorraine Hansberry Theatre in downtown San Francisco is at risk of being evicted from its home of 25 years. The property has been acquired by the Academy of Art College and has given the company a deadline to leave. The Lorraine Hansberry is the only African American theater in the City's theater district and the only African American Equity house on the West Coast. It has hosted 120 productions, including its annual holiday classic Black Nativity and has an ongoing partnership with Cultural Odyssey and the Medea Projects Theatre for Incarcerated Women. Read more here. Go here to see how you can help the company.

The Voice of the Lobster

The Voice of the Lobster
By Lewis Carroll

''Tis the voice of the Lobster: I heard him declare
'You have baked me too brown, I must sugar my hair.'
As a duck with its eyelids, so he with his nose
Trims his belt and his buttons, and turns out his toes.
When the sands are all dry, he is gay as a lark,
And will talk in contemptuous tones of the Shark:
But, when the tide rises and sharks are around,
His voice has a timid and tremulous sound.'

'I passed by his garden, and marked, with one eye,
How the Owl and the Panther were sharing a pie:
The Panther took pie-crust, and gravy, and meat,
While the Owl had the dish as its share of the treat.
When the pie was all finished, the Owl, as a boon,
Was kindly permitted to pocket the spoon:
While the Panther received knife and fork with a growl,
And concluded the banquet by [eating the owl.]

Buns and Chou Chou - Pop Culture Critics

More here. Rabbit Bites Blog and more bunnies.

Looking for Answers?

Consult the Spam Oracle.

Friday, June 22, 2007

What the Dog Ate

One Dora Band-aid (used).


Yesterday morning my daughter came up stairs from her bedroom calling:

O: Daddy, Daddy, Daddy!
M: Honey, what do you need?
O: I want my Daddy!
M: Would you like to call him at work?
O: I want to watch TV!

The One You Don't Hear-

Bob Harris breaks down the last 5 minutes of the Sopranos Finale.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Long Live Rock

from Rock -n- Roll Hall of Lame

Once upon a time, I worked in one of those “High Fidelity”-ish record shops. In fact, I worked in three of them over the course of about 12 years. If you ever bought something from me or my co-workers, you can be assured that we said horrible things about your choices the second you walked out the door. (Except for that one guy named Sean who had impeccable taste in everything and who later became a heroin addict and then stopped buying records, overdosed and disappeared into a Christian rehab. We thought he was awesome.) But when you work in a place like that for long enough, you realize something very important about popular music. And here it is: everything sucks. (the rest here)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007


Social and political commentary. With a sense of humor. Banksy gets it. Check out his website here.
My personal favorite is the Disneyland film. Take that "America's Funniest Home Videos" !

Friday, June 15, 2007


Roman Signer's Suitcase found via Tim Etchells
See also: Action with Sheets of Paper

If you wanted to make a list of major contemporary artists who, for whatever reason, are comparatively little known in the U.S., Roman Signer should be right near the top. During the past few years there has been a surge of interest in his work in Europe, but he has exhibited rarely in the U.S., and his work has been written about even less. This neglect is unfortunate, because since the early 1970s, Signer, now 62 years old, has been developing an extraordinary body of work, consisting of brief, transitory pieces and durable sculptures that are evidence of a process as well as an event, along with drawings and endless documentation. Many of his projects mix an air of quasi-scientific research (although of a decidedly homemade variety) with an impish, pranksterish humor. Sometimes this "research," this desire to see what happens if a brief chain of events is set into motion, can be wildly funny, with slapstick mishaps, moments when things break down or veer off unexpectedly into mini-disasters. For Sink (1986), a table, each of its legs in a metal pail, sailed forth on a precarious voyage into a river, only to tilt and sink two minutes later in a kind of tragicomic denouement--certainly among the most short-lived, fragile and awkward outdoor sculptures that you are ever likely to see. At other times, Signer's events-as-sculptures yield images so beguiling that it's easy to forget that they were more or less instantaneous and not painstakingly made over weeks or months. For Falling Barrel (1996), a metal barrel filled with water was dropped from the ceiling to the floor. As the barrel plummeted, silvery water flew up in a ragged column, and at the point of impact more water jetted from the barrel's punctured side. The whole ensemble, including a rising and falling spray of droplets and the thudding impact that contorted the barrel, is heartbreakingly beautiful--and it also took about one second to execute, tops. That's Signer at his best: a sculptor whose works embody pure transformation. Using a variety of means, he constantly seeks out the exact volatile moment when one body or form abruptly changes into another, in the process fusing creation and destruction. (the rest)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Open the Door

Don't Stop-

I don't know about you, but lately I've been thinking of A.J. Soprano and George W. Bush. They're kinda alike except A.J. reads.

Darkness at the break of noon
Shadows even the silver spoon
The handmade blade, the child's balloon
Eclipses both the sun and moon
To understand you know too soon
There is no sense in trying.

Pointed threats, they bluff with scorn
Suicide remarks are torn
From the fool's gold mouthpiece
The hollow horn plays wasted words
Proves to warn
That he not busy being born
Is busy dying.

Temptation's page flies out the door
You follow, find yourself at war
Watch waterfalls of pity roar
You feel to moan but unlike before
You discover
That you'd just be
One more person crying.

So don't fear if you hear
A foreign sound to your ear
It's alright, Ma, I'm only sighing.

As some warn victory, some downfall
Private reasons great or small
Can be seen in the eyes of those that call
To make all that should be killed to crawl
While others say don't hate nothing at all
Except hatred.

Disillusioned words like bullets bark
As human gods aim for their mark
Made everything from toy guns that spark
To flesh-colored Christs that glow in the dark
It's easy to see without looking too far
That not much
Is really sacred.

While preachers preach of evil fates
Teachers teach that knowledge waits
Can lead to hundred-dollar plates
Goodness hides behind its gates
But even the president of the United States
Sometimes must have
To stand naked.

An' though the rules of the road have been lodged
It's only people's games that you got to dodge
And it's alright, Ma, I can make it.

Advertising signs that con you
Into thinking you're the one
That can do what's never been done
That can win what's never been won
Meantime life outside goes on
All around you.

You lose yourself, you reappear
You suddenly find you got nothing to fear
Alone you stand with nobody near
When a trembling distant voice, unclear
Startles your sleeping ears to hear
That somebody thinks
They really found you.

A question in your nerves is lit
Yet you know there is no answer fit to satisfy
Insure you not to quit
To keep it in your mind and not fergit
That it is not he or she or them or it
That you belong to.

Although the masters make the rules
For the wise men and the fools
I got nothing, Ma, to live up to.

For them that must obey authority
That they do not respect in any degree
Who despise their jobs, their destinies
Speak jealously of them that are free
Cultivate their flowers to be
Nothing more than something
They invest in.

While some on principles baptized
To strict party platform ties
Social clubs in drag disguise
Outsiders they can freely criticize
Tell nothing except who to idolize
And then say God bless him.

While one who sings with his tongue on fire
Gargles in the rat race choir
Bent out of shape from society's pliers
Cares not to come up any higher
But rather get you down in the hole
That he's in.

But I mean no harm nor put fault
On anyone that lives in a vault
But it's alright, Ma, if I can't please him.

Old lady judges watch people in pairs
Limited in sex, they dare
To push fake morals, insult and stare
While money doesn't talk, it swears
Obscenity, who really cares Propaganda, all is phony.

While them that defend what they cannot see
With a killer's pride, security
It blows the minds most bitterly
For them that think death's honesty
Won't fall upon them naturally
Life sometimes
Must get lonely.

My eyes collide head-on with stuffed graveyards
False gods, I scuff
At pettiness which plays so rough
Walk upside-down inside handcuffs
Kick my legs to crash it off
Say okay, I have had enough
What else can you show me?

And if my thought-dreams could be seen
They'd probably put my head in a guillotine
But it's alright, Ma, it's life, and life only.
Bob Dylan

Monday, June 11, 2007

The Aliens Are Coming

"That looks like alien intestines!" My son, upon seeing me eat linguine with pesto sauce.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

My Little Olive

Dear Olive:

This morning was chaos what with trying to feed your brother who as we know is picky, picky, picky. He likes his eggs flat and dry and not slimy and he wants an omelette with cheese and folded just so. But I've always been able to count on you to eat your eggs however I make them, so imagine my surprise/disappointment when you decided you wanted your egg flat too. It was more than I could take on three hours of uninterrupted sleep. I came up with some clever response that went something like this:

Mom: You know what? This isn't a restaurant. At a restaurant you get to order your food and get it just the way you like it. This is home and at home you get your food the way I make it.
You: Let's go to a restaurant!

Kicked to the curb by a three year old. It reminds me of that time in high school when the director (English teacher) of our Spring play got so upset with us that she yelled "If you guys think I'm stupid then don't say anything!" There was not a peep from anyone. Not a peep.

Tomorrow we're going to see the Vivienne Westwood exhibit at the De Young. You're going to fit right in there with your red, yellow, and blue striped pants, your yellow socks, your red glittery shoes, your blue and white handkerchief print dress, and the Dora party hat you've been wearing for the past two weeks. Ta!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Album Covers from Hell

Hey kids. Next time some pesky adult starts telling you how much classier things were back in the old days, ask them to explain these.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Dreams That Money Can Buy

A film by Hans Richter. This is Duchamp's fragment with music by John Cage.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

A Very Stylish Girl

Opening of the Vivienne Westwood Exhibit at the De Young in San Francisco

Wendell Berry Interview

How can a family ‘live at the center of its own attention?’
Wendell Berry’s thoughts on the good life


If you profess to embrace family values and you shop at Wal-Mart, think again. The global economy, powered by big corporations such as Wal-Mart, destroys families with low prices made possible by low wages.

Such are the teachings of Wendell Berry, 71, a lifelong advocate of family values, sustainable agriculture and environmental stewardship. Berry’s writings promote local economies as a healthier, more eco-friendly way of life. He has authored more than 40 books and is among 35 Kentucky writers whose work is featured in a new anthology on the devastation that mountaintop removal mining has wrought in Southern Appalachia.

Berry lives, writes and farms at Lane’s Landing near Port Royal, Ky.

Friday, June 01, 2007

I Promise

To stop shooting food with my cellphone camera. I realize it looks flat and unappetizing.

From an Angry Soldier

Found this on the Best of Craigslist:

Fuck you, war supporters, George W. Bush, and all the god damn mother fuckers who made the war possible. I hope you burn in hell.
(read the rest here)

Friday, May 25, 2007


I found this blog post today via The Center for Improved Living. It's written by a soldier in Iraq who when answering the May 24th question for the day "What do you REALLY want to do today? "over at CFIL, replied "I wish I could be home eating ice cream with my wife and daughter...I'm sick of Iraq."

Two Women (55 - 60 years)


Overheard conversation in a cafe in Palo Alto:

A: I saw that play - Homebody/Kabul just before I left.
B: What did you think of it?
A: I didn't- I didn't think it was successful.
B: But they go to Afghanistan- This woman?
A: Right. You never know whether she dies or disappears know, pulls a Kurtz.
B: Arrogant, naive Westerners flying themselves headlong into something they know nothing about.
A: Reminded me of a Paul Bowles novel. The Sheltering Sky? But I have to tell you about the play. Well- it was nearly four hours long! If you're Shakespeare-
B: Or Mozart-
A: Right. Anybody else- forget it. You don't get to write four hour plays. I mean I see that thing and------I just don't know what to do with this world. We didn't go into WWII until we were smashed in the face with Pearl Harbor- Why the sudden? I mean it's disturbing to think of our government talking about attacking another country when nothing has happened to us.
B: It's just a case of what's good for Mitsubishi is good for the world.
A: The war on terrorism is being run by all the people who benefit from oil.
B: You know the American Revolution wasn't fought for freedom but because of economics.
A: (audible gasp)
B: Well it's true.
A: I won't buy anything from China. They're all slaves.
B: The bottom line is RCA can go up to a third party and say how much can you make these tv's for? How much can you make this VCR for? We can get it for cheaper. We don't want to know who made it or where it comes from because it's costing us less. We can pass the savings on to the consumer. Right?

Monday, May 21, 2007

Sex Pistols Live in San Francisco

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3: Contains the infamous "ever get the feeling that you've been cheated" line.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Broccoli Quiche

Since our third child was born last month, I've been obsessively making this savory ditty. It's a simple, tasty, any-time meal that's great when I need to power snack. I've been making it with pre-made pie crust. I prefer homemade sure. But I don't have time to make it right now. As it is, sometimes I have to assemble the components over a couple of days because I either don't have all the ingredients or I get interrupted by the kiddies. Anyway, I've tried two different brands from Whole Foods. 1) Vermont Mystic Pie Company's frozen pie shells 2) some other brand I can't remember (not as good as #1, but takes up less room in the freezer).

Broccoli Quiche

Filling (use any combination of the following and put into 2 pie shells)
7 - 8 fresh mushrooms
1/2 bunch of green onions
2 packages of frozen broccoli or the equivalent in leftovers
1 pound cooked bacon or prosciutto
6 - 8 oz of cheddar
6 - 8 oz of monterey jack
season with salt and pepper if you like

Batter (mix well then pour over the filling slowly)
1 1/2 pints of whipping/heavy cream
7 - 8 eggs

400 degree oven for 15 minutes
350 degree oven for 45 minutes

Looks something like this:

I've been making it with broccoli and prosciutto and a variety of cheeses. This week's was a mixture of muenster, pepper jack, and cheddar, plus I used bacon which was nice change. The pepper jack was a bit much at times. I like the astringent taste of using only cheddar. Astringent - what a selling point. Makes 2 pies or you can halve the recipe.

Serve and enjoy!

What the Dog Ate

The head of my daughter's toothbrush.
(identified first when it came back out the way it came in)

By the way. Have you seen this dog?

Lost in Translation

My husband, Roger, had a particularly confusing interaction with one of the mothers at my son's school recently. It went like this:

School Mom: Your cat is dead.
Roger: We don't have a cat.
School Mom: Your cat is dead.
Roger: We don't have a cat.
School Mom: No. No. Your cat is dead!
Roger: I'm sorry, but we really don't have a cat.
School Mom (emphatically, slowly pronouncing every syllable): Your cat is dead. We wren out'a food yestrdy in 'e didn't git hat lunch.

It helps to know that said School Mom is originally from New Zealand. So here's the translation:

School Mom: You're Carter's dad. We ran out of food yesterday and he didn't get hot lunch.
Roger: Oh. Carter! I'm Carter's dad.! Right. We were wondering about that.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Cream and Dream

My favorite ice cream shop of all time. When my husband and I were in Prague, we went to this place every night.

Monday, May 14, 2007

How To Eat A Kumquat

My daughter wanted to try Kumquats for dinner tonight. We bought some but then became perplexed about how exactly we should eat them. Here's the video we found. I love the internets!

Friday, May 11, 2007

That's Opera Doc

The Numbers

Artist Chris Jordon's portrait of America in cellphones, plastic bottles, handguns, jet trails, pain killers, and more. Be sure to check out Ben Franklin where Chris depicts the amount of money our government spends each hour on the war in Iraq. Clicky clicky here.

Here's just one example: (photos on Jordon's website have better resolution).

2.5 million plastic bottles, the number used in the US every hour.

Partial zoom:

Actual size:

What is it? A robot effigy of our George dubya as a gladiator pulling a chariot. This was the fun ride at last weekend's Peninsula School Spring Fair. Your week can't be that bad when it starts like this can it?

Friday, May 04, 2007

Random Ten

  1. Bring Me Some Water - Eddie Money
  2. Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) - Arcade Fire
  3. Word Mule - Jim White
  4. My Old Kentucky Home - Paul Robeson
  5. A Goodbye Rye - Richard Buckner
  6. Icky Thump - White Stripes
  7. She Sells Sanctuary - The Cult
  8. Eulogy to Lenny Bruce - Nico
  9. Smells Like Teen Spirit - Patti Smith
  10. Cherry Bomb - The Runaways
  11. Black Holes - Needle

Be Careful What You Wish For

Or at least be more selective when giving out your address!

Goodbye to All That

Last Saturday was the kind of day that begins civilized enough - you know - chocolate croissants and strawberries - but around mid-day turns into a free-for-all with the kids toys strewn all over the house and you taking a rubber mallet and a crowbar to the couch. See about six years ago, our dog decided to eat a hole in the back cushion and the couch has never been the same. Some would argue (I would) that the end of the beginning came when the manager at our old apartment complex decided it was time to re-roof. This fine dust shook out of the ceiling and landed on the couch and instantly became ground in. But the demise of the couch has increased with the addition each kid. Our daughter sits at one end and eats her Amaranth flakes there (the side the dog chewed oddly enough) and pretty much became her little nest. She stuffed her My Little Ponies underneath the cushions along with what appeared to be a whole box of cereal and crayons and money and, and, and. The kids liked to jump on the couch just to see all the crap fall out of it. Anyway, last Saturday we said goodbye to all that and pried the couch apart and took it to our local garbage collection site. I wanted to get out the chainsaw because for me, firing up the chainsaw is the adult equivalent of dancing the Hokey Pokey. It's what it's all about.

We didn't take pictures. Because to have thought about taking pictures. Taking pictures. Would have taken us out of the experience. We would have been projecting into the future. So as much as you'd like to see our destroyed couch, I can't accommodate such a requests. Sorry. Next time. Next time.

Believe It!

Fundamentalist atheists.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Soup to Nuts

Miranda July's book promotion and tour schedule written on a dry-erase board...or is it?

The End of a 1,400-Year-Old Business

The world's oldest continuously operating family business ended its impressive run last year. Japanese temple builder Kongo Gumi, in operation under the founders' descendants since 578, succumbed to excess debt and an unfavorable business climate in 2006.

How do you make a family business last for 14 centuries? Kongo Gumi's case suggests that it's a good idea to operate in a stable industry. Few industries could be less flighty than Buddhist temple construction. The belief system has survived for thousands of years and has many millions of adherents. With this firm foundation, Kongo had survived some tumultuous times, notably the 19th century Meiji restoration when it lost government subsidies and began building commercial buildings for the first time. But temple construction had until recently been a reliable mainstay, contributing 80% of Kongo Gumi's $67.6 million in 2004 revenues. (another slice)

Not Saying Anyone is a Geek...
But if you're interested in taking the Kite-Launched Skydiver challenge or getting your paper airplanes to stay aloft for 20 secs, you might want to go here.

Not Saying Anyone is a Stuntman...
But ouch!

39 Ingredients and One of Them Explodes!

Twinkie, Twinkie...tunnel-busting Twinkie


Thick cream and egg yolks are nature's way of merging water and fat for creaminess. Polysorbate replicates this, but lasts much longer. The emulsifier is made using explosive ethylene oxide. "They're using an explosive ingredient to make food," Ettlinger says. "That kind of blew my mind."

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

The Great Turtle Race

My son's school is one of the sponsors of The Great Turtle Race. Their turtle's name is Saphira. If you watch the Colbert Report, you may have heard there's a turtle named after Stephen - Stephanie Colburtle.

Check out The Great Turtle Race here.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

And So It Goes

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
1922 — 2007

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Strong Beliefs

"I strongly believe that the Hooters concept is something that Israelis are looking for."-Ofer Ahiraz

Check this out.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Henry Miller Reads

From Black Spring & The Colossous of Maroussi. Listen.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

How Big is Your Fish?

I'm guessing it's huge. And gorgeous! David Lynch explains.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Amy Sedaris Craft Challenge

See the winners!

See a slideshow of all the submissions!

Hear the interview with Amy!

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Hey Sport

Sports are dangerous and tiring activities performed by people with whom I share nothing in common except the right to trial by jury. - Fran Lebowitz

Monday, February 12, 2007

Pavarotti and Friend

Who is Luciano singing with? Nope. Try again... Nope. Ha! You're colder than a bee with a yellow jacket. Click HERE and enjoy.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Grant Morrison Explains It All For You

This video is 45 minutes. Just so you know.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Apple 1984 & Colbert "Wag of the Finger"

Ridley Scott's 1984 Apple commercial


Thursday, January 18, 2007

Why do you think they call them Puffins?

So much big crap these days. The small stuff can be overlooked. Birds and cigarettes. Addiction or just a bad habit? I hope they get help. Our homes may be next.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Presidential Wet Dream

Unlimited execu-power (stripped down post-Watergate), never-ending national security threats. Dahlia Lithwick gives the details here.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Bush's Bunker

He's delusional, he's a sociopath - he's our president.

Justin A. Frank, M.D.: I really think that Bush is not competent to be President. He is unconsciously destructive. He is out of touch with his cruelty. He is unable to think clearly when presented with new information. He cannot do it. He cannot read. He cannot pay attention to the Baker-Hamilton Report. He never looked at that report. He looked at the opening title, about a new way forward or something, and that’s what he’s been using as his slogan now. He is not able to process information. (more)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007


Hey. I'm still wrapping Christmas presents. Really. My husband's birthday was last Friday and I haven't wrapped his gifts, signed his cards or done that really special something for him. You know, bathed the dogs.

Why? I have a problem with time. Like for the past - let's just say several years. I can be "on time." Sure. But the big picture - let's just say for me it's pretty f-ing big. No edges, borders or frames. I thought it was bad when I was doing summer stock and all the days became the same. But things have become even less defined. Don't know what to make of it. Perhaps there will be
a pill soon.

But today. Today. I am resolved to clear off my desk.
How does this happen? Simple. First the kitchen counter gets covered with this stuff and then I clean up the kitchen and move it to here, thinking I'll get around to putting it away. But it never happens. It builds up over time and this is what I get. I dream of having one of those clean, minimalist desks like you see in Dwell, Real Simple, or Sunset.

I'll settle for some workspace.

So. Today. Since the babysitter canceled, I'm going to enlist my daughter and we're going to have at the desk.

Oops. It's almost naptime.