Wednesday, July 28, 2004


Pet Junkie introduced herself to me the first week I was away at college. Classes hadn't even started yet. It was Orientation Week and we were on a boat in San Diego harbor, one of the many activities the school had planned for incoming freshmen. I was sitting by myself feeling awkward and uncomfortable and generally freaked out when she came up to me and started rambling on about how college was a social experience and other such things.

I didn't want to talk. I didn't want to deal with maintaining a conversation and generally resented her for casting a spotlight on me. And now, twelve years later, just the thought of that event not taking place makes me want to cry.

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Word on the street is that Allan had a mishap on his motorcycle on Sunday. There was mention of fractures. Surgery. I'm glad it wasn't worse. Here's to a speedy recovery my friend.

EDIT: chronology

Fair and Balanced

See, this is why I love Tony Pierce. He's willing to engage his readership regardless of whether or not they agree with him or his actions. I called him out on his iPod fundraising blogothon and he could have just told me to shut up, blocked my IP and carried on with the festivities. But he didn't. He left comments:
1. no one is begging
2. there was a one day deadline because i didnt want to bother people with the request
3. if i was greedy i would have asked for something else.
4. it's not about sympathy, its about $10 a loyal reader
5. no one can beat the star wars kid, not even me.

And then he linked me.

I still feel the same about "the experiment." You've implied a need for financial inducement where none existed before. You introduced this experiment with a picture of a giant iPod front and center on your blog. You chose an item that is one of the most expensive and highly sought after devices of its kind and tried to guilt or entice me into helping buy it for you. I have no interest in buying traffic for my meager blog. But I do have an interest in a fair and balanced treatment of the opposition. And it is for this reason that you have been flowed.

You are a good man Mr. Pierce. Lesser men are trying to level anyone who obstructs their progress with "you are either with us or against us" battle cries but you have not stooped to such levels. You are a true patriot.

And deserve an iPod.

Speaking of Risk Aversion...

This is a fascinating assessment of the Democratic Convention and it's perfectly scripted purpose.

I found the link in David Sifry's CNN coverage of the event, which is interesting in and of itself.

Monday, July 26, 2004

Where's the Beef?

Hey Ted, what if we actually have 3,000,000 upstarts. Maybe blogs are the new UHF. Maybe the next epochal change in the way information is delivered isn't in the airwaves. Maybe it's on the wires.

With blogs guiding presidential campaigns and bloggers attending the DNC it's only a matter of time until someone turns this shit into the next Superstation.

That's not to say that media consolidation isn't bad. Having an oligarchy of profit-oriented organizations as the gatekeepers of our information is no good at all. But Nature finds a way...


Yesterday I ventured into the U District to meet Karen, Emma and Jeremy at the Seven Gables Theater to see Control Room. It was an eye-opening film considering the efforts of our government to demonize the network and the fact that I have no access to Al-Jazeera programming.

After the movie I detoured into a nearby Jack In The Box and stepped through the looking glass. This particular establishment seems to be a locus for mental dysfunction. There was the young latin man who was not deterred by the vigorous rejection he was receiving from a young latin woman. There was the freakishly skinny blonde man who tried, unsuccessfuly, to barter with the exasperated woman behind the counter. There was the visibly damaged homeless man wearing boxer shorts over his jeans who successfully got an order of fries for 70 cents, sat down by the window, and then alternately laughed at or cursed the air.

I stayed and ate my food despite the fact that I was as uncomfortable as I was conspicuous. And on the way home I saw a balding old man wearing women's shoes and carrying a purse.

He had tits.


This is my favorite post on your blog.


I'm not used to seeing the swaggering Tony Pierce beg for a little piece. Seems the iPod's siren song has caught his fancy in a big way. But it's hard to have any sympathy for a guy who gets to hang out with hot chicks.

And the one day deadline just makes it seem greedy.

So Tony, if you film yourself flailing around like a faux-Jedi and then upload the footage to your favorite p2p source then I will help you get your iPod. It's only fair.

I wouldn't be the Hyperbolic Mollusk if I didn't call them like I think they might be even though I don't see very well out of the water.

Light Reading


EDIT: Children of Satan III: The Sexual Congress for Cultural Fascism

Speaking of Things Revolting...

This might break Karen.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Get Your Head Out of the Clouds

Yesterday I was saved by Pet Junkie, her parents house and the glory of air conditioning. Jeff, Matthew and Anne Marie all met us in Bellevue to watch The Dreamers on a magnificent home theater system and to stay as far away from outside as possible. While we were consuming the sandwiches our afore-mentioned host prepared for us, the topic of tub girl and goatse came up...not exactly the best subjects to discuss in detail over a meal.

Some were curious. Some were tempted. But all eventually backed away from the idea of viewing the horror these two images have unleashed upon the world. But if you can handle graphic movies about incestuous sex then maybe you'll survive. Thus I present goatse (NSFW) and tub girl (NSFW). Abandon all hope ye who enter here. Seriously.

The former is a full-fledged phenomenon spawning its own tribute page. At least I warned you, which is a courtesy that I did not receive.

Saturday, July 24, 2004


If there is a Sun God it is angry and wants me dead.

EDIT: Link redacted. The world is no longer melting.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

I want cartoons!

It's the dark ages here under the sea. I am actually typing this post out on a crude device consisting of vacuum tubes, discarded transistors and an antique audio device that plays back wax cylinders. It was really quite remarkable in its day.

That said, I am not able to enjoy some of the comforts that the more technologically enabled take for granted. There is no tv. There is no cable. There is no surround sound and there is no TiVo. It's that last one that has been steadily eating away at my analog flesh so I have sought preservation in the PVR Blog. It is an exhaustive digest of news covering what is surely man's greatest invention. Enjoy.

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Save me from myself

I was intrigued by this I bought a pint, and that's when the madness began. I ate the whole thing, and not in the manner that I have consumed other full pints of Ben and Jerry's. This time I could not stop. I forced myself to put the lid back on. I buried it in the freezer only to feverishly sprint back moments later to renew the glorious flavor once it threatened to vanish from my mouth.

And now I want another. In fact, it's dinner time and it's all I want.

And I don't even have to get in the car to get one.

Damn you Ben.

Curse you Jerry!

Lost. Not found.

Lost. Not found.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Hail Caesar

Looks like I am not the only one.

I want an ice cream sandwich.

Trust Issues

Discussions of trust have been a pet project on this blog lately. I've touched on topics ranging from the Induce Act to big business to our bumbling president; every subject inspired by sources far more credible than this one. That tradition continues.

Today Dan Gillmor covers how trust can give Google a competitive advantage. It's an idea that ties in nicely with Seth Godin's idea of relationship marketing and Hugh's claim that "media is an interface."

Those who operate within traditional power centers seem to recognize that the Internet represents a shift in the balance of that power and are working to change the architecture of the Net to preserve the status quo; witness the rise of DRM, the extension of copyright, the DMCA and the pending Induce Act just to name a few. But as people begin to recognize what the Net is capable of they will begin to understand the power they have. Imagine a political or cultural flash mob operating on a global scale.

Who's going to be able to control that? No one. But the organizations that the mobs trust will benefit handsomely.

My advice: let go!

Saturday, July 17, 2004

I am the Romans

Inspired by a nagging hunger and a challenge from Tony Pierce I struck out for the Bite of Seattle. After some crawfish beignets, jambalaya, steak frites, strawberry crepes, an ice cream bar, a coke, an apple juice and a chocolate milk I decided that enough was enough. The walk home (about 2 miles) still wasn't long enough to burn off all I consumed so I may have to purge myself later this evening. See the chronicle of my journey in the previous posts or go here for the VIP treatment.

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown

My Hometown


This is a test post from flickr, a fancy photo sharing thing.

Friday, July 16, 2004

Cool Pillow

I always wanted something like it, especially in the summer when lingering heat and a lack of air conditioning made lying in bed about as pleasant as dying from dehydration. I never saw anything that suited my needs so I considered making my own: the Cool Pillow. It was going to be revolutionary. It was going to help millions sleep better in the summertime. It was going to be on QVC and it was going to make me rich!

Sadly, my entrepeneurial spirit was outgunned by someone who had the same idea and the fortitude to design, produce and market it. And according to this review, it doesn't suck.

I guess the bright side of all this is that I could just buy one.

Hot pillows suck.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Inducing Action

EFF reports that the Induce Act has fallen off the fast track in Congress. From the latest issue of their EFFector newsletter:
The Senate Judiciary Committee has taken the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act (Induce Act, S.2560) off the fast track, scheduling a hearing on the bill next Thursday. This is good news for the public, but the recording industry is going on the offensive, turning up its rhetoric in an effort to scare common sense out of the debate. In a letter sent to the Judiciary Committee and all 100 senators, RIAA president Mitch Bainwol insists that critics of the bill are missing the point, and that the Induce Act is a "moral behavioral test that targets the bad guys."

But the wording of the legislation itself doesn't support Bainwol's claims. By making it illegal to "aid, abet, or induce copyright infringement," the Induce Act could make companies liable for violations committed by their customers. This extends liability so far that it threatens both current and future technologies.
Meanwhile, Boing Boing reports on the RIAA's efforts to push it through and one annotation of an RIAA letter that is a pretty effective rebuttal of the industry's claims.

You can help stop the Induce Act in its tracks by writing to your Senator.

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

Screaming at a Wall

I caved. Now that I have a measurable income and anticipate having to interact with my bank on a regular basis, I knew I wouldn't be able to keep up my opposition. All of my stubborn contempt for the unnatural boundaries within a single organization would not change the fact that I have a California account, but live in Washington. At least the new account doesn't have service fees. And I'll get a check card with my picture on it.

It's very telling that the whole time one of the tellers was explaining the account features and fielding my questions I kept looking for the things he was hiding. I wanted to know the catch. Banks used to be reputable institutions. Dependable. Trustworthy. Now it seems like all the big banks have terrorized their customers so profusely that we expect the very worst from them most of the time.

Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Nude Celebrities Start War on Porn

Fighting a war on pornography during an increasingly controversial real war seems a little misguided to me.

The only soldier in the war on pornography who has been on the front lines that I can think of is Linda Lovelace. And, last I checked, she still has all of her arms and legs.

Of course I only say that because I am (quite obviously) a pedophile who is addicted to smut.

Oh, and because I'm a terrorist.

Sunday, July 04, 2004

Feeling threatened?

There's been a lot of talk about piracy, DRM, copyright, the Induce Act, and the criminal masses lately. I even posted a rant on the subject myself. But this has inspired even more thoughts on the insanity of Big Media's approach to their audience.

Consider what is attractive about movie theaters: they offer something truly unique with giant screens and sound quality that is often beyond the reach of most of us. Add the peripheral joys of a little popcorn, a nice cold soda and the shared collective response of an interested crowd exposed to something hilarious or horrifying and you have something difficult to recreate at home. This experience offers something that we cannot replicate on our own. Millions of movie-goers have shown for decades that this experience is something we value. But that experience is going downhill because of the attitudes like the one we see in the above story.

Night vision goggles? That kind of gear isn't cheap and is of questionable benefit to the audience the theater and the studios? The money used for such "loss prevention" could likely pay for more employees. It could be used to keep the bathrooms clean. It could be used for an usher or two that can help everyone find a seat at a crowded first showing. It could be used to augment the meager pay of existing employees in the form of a bonus. You could post someone in a theater and eject those talking on cell phones or evict someone who let their children run through the aisles during a show. I've been to showings with both; it's intervention I would have appreciated.

Instead, the priority is to prevent the vastly inferior transcription of a major blockbuster and prevent its illegal distribution either online or in foreign markets. Even though this is most likely digital, such duplicates carry with them the stigma that accompanies anything that is a copy of a copy. The generational loss in this case is significant. Viewers will see the film through the shaky lense of a handheld camera. There is no surround sound. Most of the joys of the movie experience are removed. This is what Hollywood is afraid of? This is what they are willing to destroy the theater experience to prevent? All retail enterprises are equipped to deal with a certain amount of shrinkage—factor this in and move on. Work on improving the benefits that give you an advantage in the marketplace!

The movie theater experience is a prime example of how hostile companies are to their own customer base. Here we see the very bare minimum of service working in concert with wildly increasing prices. This would be expected and accepted if the high cost of seeing a movie was met with a premium experience. Instead we are held captive by wildly priced concessions, subjected to a half hour or more of thinly disguised commercials, treated like criminals and forced to endure the inerruptions of the experience (like that damnable idiot having a conversation on his cell phone) with no other recourse than a forceful "shut the fuck up"—another equally abhorrent distraction.

We, as customers, are not a resource to be exploited. We are a constituency to be served. Anything to the contrary is just bad manners.

Friday, July 02, 2004

That's the last straw.

Maybe Allan can shed some light on this. Personally, I think this low-carb nonsense has gone too far. Want to not be fat? Go fucking exercise. And I don't mean dish the outrageous sums required for a membership to an overcrowded gym. Go walk somewhere. Ride a bike. Do some push-ups. That stuff is free, doesn't take much time, and can be integrated into your daily routine. Then drink some normal wine and enjoy it.

You can't buy good health. You have to earn it.

-via substitute