How much did that band you just saw charge for the gig? The Clear Channel (yeah, boo, hiss) Artist Availablility (sic) page can provide some indication. The range is surprising, and some of the costs caught me off guard - at both ends of the scale...
I mean, how good a show does Cheri Oteri really put on? Or Morrissey at that price. I mean, probably a good show in the latter case, but, well, he better have a big band.
So this weekend AZ was away on business, and I took some of the time to myself to actually get out of the house for a bit, hook up with friends, music and movies.
Far superior to moping around the house, wondering if AZ will call or not....
So Saturday afternoon I went downtown with our friend Vinod to the MCA (Andreas Gursky exhibition) and to a bit of the World Music Festival. On my way there I saw a creative busker:
This was in the little Water Tower park (which in the building itself has a nice photography exhibition). The busker - he's the one painted in silver - was standing on a set of three unattached milk crates. In front of him is a mat apparently used for breakdancing, and in front of that a large tub for people to put money in.
But here's the beauty part. I never saw him do more than shuffle the crates over (which was itself quite dextrous, as he shuffled detached crates across pavement without falling) to the tub, examine what he dramatically perceived to be less money than his performace was worth, and shuflle the boxes back to the position he started in. In between people would occassionally to some cheering put money into the tub. I came back after the museum, no change - still working the crowd brilliantly.
In the front of this photo is the secret beneficiary of the crowds largesse, an actually homeless (or perhaps residentially housed at the nearby YMCA) person, who got several sideline donations rather than the performer.
Later that day I took the below photo of the Carbide and Carbon building:
It's currently being renovated to become a Hard Rock Hotel. So it goes here in the big city...
And finally, a shot from Sunday evening's sunset over our neighborhood L stop as I headed off to see the vistas of Lawrence of Arabia.
A few months ago, Anne introduced me to the Burke and Wells weblog. I think I've pieced together the story - a dot-com dropout couple take off and move to Paris, discovering and rediscovering life. It's a tale certain to inspire a certain amount of jealousy in a francophile (parisophile) such as myself.
Anyway, they recently took a hiatus - returning to the states to visit family and take a journey. But now they're back in la France, and the big new post (there've been a couple updates along te way is The Most Romantic Table in Paris. And it sounds like it is.
And more, it's food writing of that sort that makes me want to go there, that makes me imagine the tastes on the tongue, the wood of the table.
So this morning I drop Anne off at the airport.... And as is my habit, I switch over to NPR on the drive back.
aside: Anne and I have an understanding about NPR and other discussion-oriented radio. She finds it makes her sleepy, I adore it.
Anyway, Scott Simon introduces a story about warchalking. I sighed, thinking it'll be another "those silly geeks" piece. And, I suppose, it was. But they had the foresight to use as their interviewee Aaron Swartz, who acquited himself well, explaining both the allure and the protection from the technique. I mean, if the housewife didn't want the hobo asking for stew, she could still lock the gate.
further aside: obligatory plug
Anyway, after the piece, I thought I'd go look at Aaron's log to see if his impressions had been posted yet. It's not responding, potentially DOS'd by a flood of NPR listeners looking for the warchalking site on the same host....
Our friend Mark went to Burning Man, and all we got were these cool photos and such
Mike's finishing up a weeklong thing of beauty, if beauty is that thing which stirs the heart and soul in some direction anticipated and unanticipated. Start with the first First Entry and read your way forward.
So much more to say; this has been a topic of conversation in our home all week, and in my mind each day as I go about my daily events.
While some of the viscerality in Mike's workcomes from knowing so many of the people inside the events Mike is reflecting on, for those (few) readers of this haphazard log of mine who don't know, you can sense this too - know at least the bonds that tie friends and communities together.
(ramble follows, proceed with caution)
Yesterday on the train I saw one of those things that gives me hope about people in our world. There in the seat in front of me, two strangers - people who (as the train lurched) bumped into each other started discussing closely our national events, disagreeing in their points of view and reasoning, but both decrying our current national lurch toward a chasm of potential disaster, decrying with some insight, decrying with passion and respect for the other's position.
This touched me, somehow. I live now in a large city, not a small subcommunity of a small midwestern town. The city encourages a degree of anonymity (even if it is anonymity in flamboyance), and these two people were able to reach out beyond that closed demeanor to discuss their sesations of a set of events that will affect not just themselves, but us all.
If we can nurture a society where people can debate these events of great import, perhaps we can actually fulfill some of the promise we ostensibly defend. That nurturing, it occurs to me, is in those small daily actions - saying hello, saying "not today, thank you" if you're blowing off the Streetwise salesman for the fourth time this week. Yes, it's in standing up when you let someone off the L beside you, not shifting 15 degrees on your seated pivot point. And its in listening to the questions people may ask you, and answering them as well as you can. Give Directions. Say "Hello" to your neighbors.
Right. More from this week's brooding anon.
I've been doing a lot of food reading lately. Not, I believe, as part of the "Return to Nesting" we amurricans have undergone as a part of our recovery from "the recent traumatic events", but because, well, it's interesting. And cooking provides a nice way of thinking of priorities and life and - the word Ruhlman uses most regularly in his writing on chefs and cooking, "excellence."
Today's food pick of the internet - Textism » On the Roasting of Chicken from textism.com. A bit McSweeney's in language, a nice looking description of the act of roasting and basting.
After some meandering, perambulations, dithering, waffling, procrastinating and the rest, bloofga.org is back in operation as a valid domain pointing to a (goodness gracious!) a real hostname rather than a non-resolving IP.
What's a bloofga.org? It's the archival home of the Indie-List Infotainment Junta work. That is to say, the archives of all the old Indie-List archives, of the Finley Breeze matter, and Mark Cornick's Telegraph product.
Read and enjoy those heady days of the 90s and indie music.
Now if we could only dig up the archives of Sick-n-Tired-l, to point out our errors....
Andy "Lightening Talk" Lester lays in with another fine dose of sanity in this use.perl.or ournal entry, this time calling for the wise elimination of the shortcut phrase "Can't we just..."
You know, it's often something I forget, but the US does have a Poet Laureate, Billy Collins. The posting of his work The Names today in the Times (and as read when Congress met in a special (PR) session in NYC Friday) reminds us of the traditional function of poets laureate, that of a marker of special occassions.
And its not a bad work, either.
Jane Brody of the New York Times, in an unexpected front page appearance (in print, anyway - on the site it got ghettoized), reports (registration required, yadda) that a panel of the Institute of Medicine has recommended new exercise and dietary guidelines for Americans to be able to achieve proper health. Instead of 30 minutes of exercise daily, we should be getting one hour. New guidelines are provided for macro-nutrients, not just vitamins and minerals. Of course, in the scientific community, debate ensues...
The best part is that this report provides a handy business opportunity, or perhaps a fund-raising bonus for their parent organization the National Academies. The report is 1000 pages long. One Thousand.
So the report, if properly bound (hardcover, perhaps with a band to retain the cover shape while in use) can be used as a step in an aerobics class, or as a power-lifter's reading AND exercise matter ("spotter, please turn the page").
Despite the many changes in our neighborhood, it's nice to know that some things never change. That's right.... Bad Signage.
Sorry 'bout that glare...
Mike Whybark accurately pointed out that the lack of entries in this space over the last couple weeks (and the resulting blank-page embarrassment) are not a DSL problem.
And now said DSL problem has been resolved by our crack team of credit-card-wielding ADSL Modem replacers, so we're back online.
Those 3-5 (and that would be three TO five, not 3[\d+]5, much as a boy can dream!) readers will be able to see new content flowing into this space in short order.