i normally would post more tonight, but i grabbed a couple of foreign videos from the corner store. see y'all tomorrow.
i should tell you i found my eddy merckz corsa sl road bike for $100. it had been whanged in an accident; but i knew a guy in somerville, n.j. with one of those huge european frame alignment tables. he got it straightened out ... but just. if it had been a little further out, it wouldn't have gone back in (the tubes would have been compromised). i took a gamble, and got a good bike. it was my first purchase over the internet; had to be 1993, i believe. since then, it's become somewhat of a mongrel. i found campagnolo record shift/brake levers from a crashed bike. campagnolo veloce derailleurs. a ceramic rear rim. a mavic up front. campagnolo record brakes. some strange set of clip-in pedals (purple). every piece was hard won and earned. i love the bike, and wouldn't dream of trading it for anything else. so now i have a yellow hutchinson tire up front and that hideous red/purple armadillo in back. the poseurs won't want to be seen on the same road with me ... and that's ok. they'll just be catching my dust.
i also realized my road seat has petrified in the southwestern air. tires rot in a season, handlebar tape turns to dust. but after this ride, my basso profundo has turned to alto, if you know what i mean.
well, i went out today and finally got a new tire for my road bike. a horribly heavy and ugly specialized armadillo, since all i'll be doing is training at the moment. so i tooled up my old eddy merckx and headed out ... and did horribly. it's geared much higher than my mountain bike, the geometry is no longer familiar. took me longer to cover the same amount of distance than yesterday. but i did it; that's what counts. of course i'll get better.
hal, you *DA MAN*. and you know i never use capital letters. congrats. oh my lord. i just read audrey. hal, my friend, it sounds like you ad libbed your printed speech? do you know how hard that is? do you know how many trained speakers i've teleprompted for, who were unable to do that? i've probably teleprompted for upwards of 400 people ... i would say a total of five could ad-lib their speeches. five. you should be proud.
enough of this; going out to play. back later. maybe.
washington post: philosophy on tap at your nearest tavern. cool.
nasa: violent solar storms reduce ozone in earth's atmosphere.
cnet: sql security oversights, email with php.
about linux: linux myths and misconceptions 101.
yell 'hare krishna!' at noon tomorrow.
dpreview: free trial of lurawave jpeg2000 plugin for photoshop. they seem impressed.
kuro5hin: i ain't superstitous, black cat on my trail ... willie dixon
newsforge: eff organizes rally at skylarov hearing. really, the big problem software manufacturers have to hurdle is that one can't dictate how someone is going to use their product. i could buy a hairdryer, crack the case apart, empty out the contents and use the plastic shell as a salad bowl. granted, the manufacturer didn't intend it for that, but i'm perfectly within my rights to do it. likewise, i should be able to take a program, break it apart, and use pieces for other things. the dmca is flawed. i'm being theoritical, just fyi.
if it's up for the rest of the day, look at john tobin's face (the freed american student). what a story that is.
international herald tribune op-ed: bush vs. the environment. first clear use of the word 'xenophobia' i've seen used in an international news source. not that i haven't been expecting it.
santa fe new mexican: top story, a water fight, with racist overtones. note the woman's comments, especially. raising walls is a common method of separating yourself from 'other cultures' in santa fe. that comment alone pretty much reveals the undercurrent.
ny times op-ed: mr. bush and congress. this is soft-soap. it's not politics; it's the negotiations of corporate interests. the same ones who help mr. bush set his agendas are the same ones successfully lobbying congress. we, the individual americans, have no say. wake up, america. go attend your next city council meeting, or zoning board meeting. watch how the interests of even a couple hundred residents can be put aside by one developer's attorney. money talks.
ny times books: embracing the wisdom of a castaway.
reuters: a budget showdown in the fall. the 'tax cut' that was passed was like using your charge card ... without being aware of what your balance is. this fall, the axe falls. the economy by itself may take us into deficit, but certainly the 'tax cut' was ill-advised given the turn of the economy at the time. i am very often wrong, but in the event of threatened deficit, i predict huge cuts in governmental social services, a la reagan.
reuters: cheney declines to give congress energy documents. when clinton behaved this way (and within the law), it was almost treasonous. once again, you republicans set the tone. you will be judged by the rules you have set down.
happy 101st b-day, queen mum.
cnn: north korea sticks to missile pledge. of course; this will place the american's possible breaking of the abm into stark contrast with the rest of the world. it is a smart parliamentary move on their part. i detect mr. putin's strong influence.
and now, on to other things.
you *are* reading this bottom to top, weblog style, right?
a group of us used to have this argument all the time ... could you move directly into impressionism, without tackling realism first? without having the basics of perspective drawing, figure drawing, etc. etc.? i always said no, you had to have the groundwork. it can't be real impressionism unless you know what you're dropping away from the finished product. to me, without the basics, one was fingerpainting. others disagreed; they felt that however the muse hit, it was appropriate. to me, that's like hiring someone to do object-oriented programming, when all they've ever done is cut-and-pasted previously-created code. my perception is certainly not the only perception, that's for sure. but i believe that art requires sacrifice, in many ways. so many of these new artists are creating things just because they know the 'style' is popular, and selling well. to me, that's not art. for example, i go for fritz scholder over r.c. gorman, any day of the week. gorman's for tourists, scholder is for art connosieurs. scholder's technique has spawned many popular knock-offs.
besides, god is in the lighting. for *any* medium. every photographer worships the old masters' lighting skills.
oh, and photography is art. what an old saw! if you don't think so, set down your reasons. then compare to other forms of expression. the usual argument is that it is a mechanical/chemical process, without nuance ... that the only artistic bent is in 'recognizing' a scene that's aesthetic, and snapping the shutter. oh, but there's so much more. what makes fixer less 'artistic' than cadmium red? do *you* know the permanence of oil paints, the qualities of luminosity of the various pigments? van gogh did; so did all the others. where is that different from the choice of film, paper and chemicals? or archival inks and paper? painting, drawing, sculpting, fiber arts ... they're all *just* as 'technical' as photography.
after doing a little reading at photodude, i got to thinking. the fundamental difference between art and programming is that you don't have to have a reason to create art. it never has to serve a purpose, never has to 'function.' it doesn't have to mean anything to anyone else but yourself. most artists create because it is like breathing; not to create is to die. if you've never lived with fine artists, you will not understand the intensity. the fact that one can make a living off creating art is at best (worst?) secondary. but even more important, many times the muse hits, and the way you start can be significantly different from the way you finish. i doubt many programmers begin with a word processor and end up with a spreadsheet. so programming is not like 'fine art,' certainly. no, imho, programmers are like editorial illustrators ... someone else sets the goal, and they use their particular talents to fill in the blanks. some corporations hire for the programmer's style, but many others are consigned to emulating the predominant programming paradigm, in order to deliver product. how many poor illustrators are asked to create 'matt mahurin' knockoffs, dying to show their own style instead? yet their style is not that which is accepted by the mainstream. just thinking ... thought i'd share it.
it's saturday, the weekend. nothing planned. but as i look out over the mountains, the sky is beautifully cobalt blue ... and i'm thinking to myself, how should i live this day? what should i do to make it memorable, relaxing, and a *work of art.*