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Ep #50: LEX FRIDMAN | Good For You Podcast with Whitney Cummings (Oct 15 2020).

2020oct18.

Jaiden Animations ‒ I Attempted a Speedrun (and got a world record). Now, of course, the Speedrun section is hoppin'.

2020oct18.

Life Savers Fruit Drops advertisement, 1930.

2020oct18.

Decided to re-experience 17776 (highly recommended) and idly looked up one bit because that's what I do, I look up bits. This is a reference, apparently, to the first time the phrase "hang out" had been used in its current-day context. Back in 2013 I ran across a 1869 invoice with the phrase "crash out on the floor". I mean it could be a -literal- crash on the floor. Like the cake crashed on the floor. "You sleep it off, cakey."

Meanwhile, if you have read 17776 here is a video to watch ([A Realistic Simulation ‒ 17776 Football ANIMATIC]]). It will not make sense unless you have read it.

2020sep23.

Vice TV: Meet the Engineer Preserving The Last Analog Motion Graphics Machine

2020sep23.

There was a short discussion on Twitter, a popular social media service staffed by goons, about the meaning of the phrase "pigs in a blanket." I went back into history's history to see what was actually "what."

2020sep17.

Money Plane (2020).

2020sep08.

Twitter user @hOpQTKSkHnbQILM: "I draw my favorite things I usually eat on my sneakers. I tend to be biased towards Itomen and Bourbon. I hear someone kind will spread the word and I'll get more followers."

2020aug31.

tryin' to land this puppy. end of sept. beg of oct?

2020aug20.

A notice apparently created by and for Zou Zous Cafe in Chelsea Michigan zouzouscafe.com in the year 2000.

---

Read what's below THOROUGHLY--skimming it could be very costly to you and very costly to the musical program at Zou Zou's.

For now, and until further notice from us:

1. All concerts at Zou Zou's will be ACOUSTIC only (unless you have the tiniest amplification with the volume knob set on "1" or "1.5" (out of 10) on most amps (be very cautious if you pick a higher number--err on the side of the lowest number possible.) Guitarists who insist on an amplifier (& keyboardists who NEED an amplifier) SHOULD either bring a practice amp or very small amp or the smallest amp possible. Going any louder than this, or bringing in "sizable"amp boxes/speakers, will jeopardize the music program there.

2. All singing and song delivery will be toned down to be soft--mellow--and perceived as BACKGROUND MUSIC. If you sing with minimal tone (or with whispering), this is what would be acceptable there. Appear subdued, gentle, polite at all times.

3. Choose as much material from your repertoire that would be perceived of as easy-listening for your performances at Zou Zou's. Tunes everyone knows are very desirable.

4. Be sure in all your conduct and words on the premises and outdoors near the premises is G-rated AND suitable to the mainstream (& no political or religious confrontations or rallying or advocacy in what you say/do.) Don't swear, don't rhyme with or give innuendos of swearing or unpleasant language and such. DON'T EVEN use *euphemisms* for swear words if they could cause discomfort to any audience, for example, DON'T tell a story about someone saying the words "screw you" or narrate that "they really screwed him over", etc.

5. Err on the side of SOUNDING likeable to the over-30 customers, and LOOKING young to the under-19 staff members there who are judgmental about who looks "cool." To look young, do nothing except relax and smile--these two things make you look young. You might want to observe how conservative & mainstream (but NOT the very-trendy/hip) under-19-year olds dress, and to approximate that look. The under-19's often can't tell if you are 18, 24, 34, 44, 54--these ages often tend to look around the same to most under-19 year olds, but if you dress in that real vaguely young/mainstream way, and if you relax and smile, they will think you are probably 18-25, which means they are likely to like you and your music. It means that the staff members there have a better chance of liking you, and they have an effect on what the management thinks of you. But you still have to be well-liked by the over-30's there, because they make up MOST of Zou Zou's clientele. Doing ALL of the above can be a challenge--and may seem shallow--but it's the reality if you want to go over well at Zou Zou's (and a number of other places, too). Hint: the typical "musician's look" of wearing all black (solid color, no patterns, slogans, logos, etc.) usually makes everyone look "young" and "cool" --we've see 60-somethings wearing all-black casual clothing be perceived as looking around 25.

Age-perception and coolness-perception shouldn't matter--but unfortunately, it does. Someone who is even perceived as "a young cool (but NOT ultra-trendy/hip) 65 year old" will be very well liked, even moreso than an "old uncool 26 year old." By the way, don't wear T-shirts with any images or slogans that suggest any other lifestyle or stance other than MAINSTREAM to these gigs at Zou Zou's (Pierce's too.) Yes, you CAN dress like a cowboy outlaw (but no fake or real guns because it would scare people) --because that image of a cowboy outlaw (even if outlaws are not mainstream) is an image that is accepted by the mainstream. But NO, you SHOULDN'T wear a T-shirt that says "Buzzcocks" or "Metal Up Your A@#" or "Like My Monkey?" or "Meat is Murder" or even "Teachers Do It With Class" at a place like Zou Zou's, because customers reacting to any element of distastefulness here will walk out and you will be causing Zou Zou's to lose business.

6. NO TABLES at Zou Zou's will be moved. Perform in whatever available space and do not get in the way of any customers who want to sit down, get up, etc.

7. Do NOT put your belongings, guitar cases, etc. on ANY of Zou Zou's tables, chairs, etc. ‒ Try to stuff them under the back bar or behind the glass arts/jewelry case. If you can't find room, try to leave some things in your car, and then if you need to go back to your car on a break to get them, do that. Don't put any belongings in the way of where customers might possibly sit down and dine.

8. Put your tip jars and CD's (etc.) either on the back bar or on top of the glass arts/jewelry case. It's okay to remind your audience that these are there-- after all you do want tips, sales, etc.--but be very mellow about the way you let people know--nothing pushy or high-pressure type sales. Be subdued about it. Oh--and this includes any literature you have about yourself--it doesn't go on Zou Zou's tables any more--but only on the back bar or on top of the glass arts/jewelry case!

9. Do not bring any literature on the premises that advocates any social, political, or religious cause, and do not engage in any verbal (spoken/sung) or nonverbal advocacy of these causes (buttons, T-shirts, etc. with slogans that you might think to wear--don't wear them at Zou Zou's or any other mainstream venue.) (Note: this doesn't mean your songs might not have a mild allusion to something religious, social, or political, but they should not be overtly advocating a position, especially if the position isn't mainstream, and/or if it would cause people in the audience to take sides one way or the other on the issue. "Where Have All the Flowers Gone" by Peter Paul and Mary which is pro-peace and anti-war but subtly so and not in your face, and mainstream enough, is an acceptable song to do, but, a song or anything you say in spoken words that bad-mouths the Republicans--or Democrats--or any social or political or religious group or individual--or that makes fun of any public figure or group--would NOT be appropriate here. Zou Zou's audiences are easily offended and the management doesn't want you to be the cause of their losing business. As for religious songs--gospel tunes are an art form accepted by the mainstream and are fine to do as long as they aren't in bad taste--your songs shouldn't say things like, "There is only one way to be saved, and that is to be a Christian" because the audience could contain Jews, Muslims, Buddhists, etc. But, a song that says "I love my Savior because of all he has done for me" is just fine. Use similar standards of taste if your songs are within any other spiritual tradition, such as Hinduism, Judaism, etc. A song can be religious and devotional without advocating the religion as a cause and offending people with it.

Use good taste. Animal rights: Don't perform material related to this--people are here eating food of all kinds. Environmentalism: songs about how lovely the parks and grass is, and how sad that they're disappearing, etc., is fine--but songs about how Washtenaw County is mishandling land use, protest songs that hit home in the local community, will cause pain and strain and divide audiences on both sides of the issue--so don't do them.

Don't do songs protesting litterbugs either--if only because the people there are probably somewhat prone to be litterbugs--like it or not, many people are litterbugs-- don't insult them while they are there watching your show. Prejudice: Avoid songs that protest prejudice--while it's a good cause, people in the audience may be prejudiced anyway and don't insult them. Don't sing songs with lines like, "I'm Asian, What the Heck, Looks Like I'm Facing A Belleville Redneck" because the audience might think you are accusing them or their cousins in Belleville of being prejudiced. But--lines like "I'm jealous and just maybe it's my family's redneck nature that's bringing out my unladlylike behavior" ‒ that could be okay because the focus is on self- blame and you aren't suggesting that someone other than yourself is a redneck, and this song has nothing to do with bigotry or prejudice, it's about someone's family's nature of how they express jealousy, and it's a funny, tongue-in-cheek song that will not likely offend anyone at Zou Zou's. Use similar guidelines for everything you do at Zou Zou's and most other venues.

BE VERY CAREFUL TO AVOID ANYTHING THAT MIGHT CAUSE DIVISION, OPPOSITION, OFFENSE, ETC. You are better to err on the side of performing old standard popular tunes, songs heard on everyone's mainstream radio stations, songs about love and heartbreak, etc.)

10. Do not bring any instruments or equipment on the premises of Zou Zou's until five (5) minutes before 8 pm. If it forces you to start your show a little late, that's fine for now. BUT--IMPORTANT--DO NOT ARRIVE LATE for your gig. Arrive 5 minutes early, and start right at 8 pm, or at 8:05 pm, or no later than 8:09 pm. Don't get loose or flexible with these times. Starting the show at 8:12 pm is too late. Plan ahead so that you have time to park your car and get there at 7:55 pm to bring in your instrument, etc. ALWAYS GO BY THE CLOCK at Zou Zou's, no matter what YOUR wristwatch says, unless the clock is way off--and then, sync your wristwatch to the night manager's wristwatch and go by that.

11. Stop your show at 10:30 pm, no matter what time of year. This means any previously booked "8-11" or "8-Midn" shows are NOW going to change to become "8:00-10:30" shows. Be packed up and off the premises by 10:45 pm. These times are EXACT because the staff will be furious if you don't stick by this. They want to get out of the shop and close up as early as they possibly can, even if it's earlier than what the window sign says the shop is open until.

12. Make as much eye contact as possible with everyone. Perform to EVERYONE, not just to your friends and family who are there. Do NOT make inside jokes or comments that the WHOLE AUDIENCE doesn't understand.

13. Smile at everybody as often as possible, especially at the staff.

14. Be polite and courteous to everyone, especially to the staff. No matter how rude anyone treats you, YOU are always to be polite, courteous and smiling to everybody.

15. Do anything the staff asks you to do,including turning down your volume, turning off your amplifier, etc., and do it without any delay, with a smile, and without any arguments or rationales against what they ask you to do. If the staff FAILS to ask you to turn down/off but YOU GET THE FEELING they would like this, then READ THEIR MINDS and do it. They may not communicate well, but your survival there depends on YOUR picking up intuitively on what they might be thinking--and responding to it in the most positive (and with self-esteem for yourself) way possible, even if you pick up on any negative vibe from juvenile personalities on the staff. Respond to negative vibes with

1.) self esteem (do not think negatively of yourself) and

2.) eagerness to please the staff and do it THEIR way, even if THEIR way seems "crazy" or "off the wall" to you, because it's THEIR business. Remember that you are an INVITED GUEST on their premises, and you are INVITED THERE TO BE IN THE SERVICE of their business. You are truly their servant while you are there--and they are not your servants and are not there to cater to you. You are there to cater to them.

16. Mention how wonderful Zou Zou's is during your performance (you can even suggestively mention things like how good their cheesecake is, etc.), compliment the staff for their outstanding, warm, & friendly service (whether or not you think this is true), and before you leave the premises, thank the staff for being so kind to be hosting this musical program and the musicians. Be so charming that you err on the side of being sickeningly sweet --but also look sincere about it, because any hint of phoniness will be picked up on and it will cause problems.

17. If a particular staff member's requests (such as the irritated and agitated behavior of an unstable young man on the staff) are questionable, check out whatever with the 30-ish short-haired attractive blond woman on the staff and HER word will be the authority to go with. Do anything SHE says (it overrules anything that any other staff member says.) If she is not there, take the word of the OLDEST looking female staff member as the authoritative word for that night. The owner is almost never there, but if she is, HER word would be the final authority. The owner is not tall, she appears to be between 35-45, she has dark medium- short (length?) hair, and is she is attractive looking.

18. Whatever you do and however you do it, PRESENT yourself as TOTALLY SERIOUS and TOTALLY PROFESSIONAL, and do everything in your power to come across as a HIGH QUALITY MUSIC PERFORMANCE. This is NOT a place where you can afford to be perceived as anything less than HIGH QUALITY talent. Remember that PRESENTATION is FAR more important (in how you are perceived) than any actual level of musical skill--for if you PRESENT yourself as HIGH QUALITY, you are likely to be perceived as such, regardless of whether or not you are a musical prodigy or virtuoso. KEEP YOUR SHOW GOING SMOOTHLY (never apologize for musical errors like wrong notes or missed lyrics--just keep going as if they didn't happen) AND LOOK SMILING AND RELAXED, CALM AND POISED. PRESENT YOURSELF WELL and act as though YOU believe you are the best. Act well, and you will be perceived as an impressive performer.

*You may already have heard advice like above before. It is still important sometimes to remind yourself that MOST venues would have standards similar (if not identical) to the above, and remind yourself of these standards, so that you do not slip up and make costly mistakes in how you present yourself at a venue. Periodic reminders of this are good for all of us.

If you have any questions, let us know.

(and I would add the unwritten rule ‒ Don't even think about mentioning this set of rules to the audience!)

2020aug19.

Oh Boy Gum, Goudey Gum Co. 1925.

2020aug17.

I have been enjoying player-based Portal 2 "Community Chambers" once again. I over-indulged back in 2013 and put it away for seven years. The one below hits many of my bells ‒ creative, huge open area with hidden bits, not mind-bendingly hard. It even has a HP bar for your "enemy."

2020aug10.

How We'll Forget The Nautilus (2020). Electronic "World Wide Web" Internet Site.

2020jul30.

Vi-O-Let Life Savers print advertisement "they take your breath away."

2020jul16.

A refresher: I am compiling a book of the hottest, most raddest macros, and also creating a book-making program. Above, a comedy funny ha-ho error wherein footnotes ascended to heaven, so beautiful. This was two weeks ago, I've since fixed that and several other things. Not going to make end-of-August deadline. End-of-September? Maybe.

2020jul16.

Hello my children. Hello. I have started a new side project, because I clearly don't have enough of those. If you happen to see this type of "CLOSED" sign as seen here in The Blues Brothers (1980) in other mass media properties, please drop me a line. Once I have a number of these collected, nothing will happen but I will have them collected.

2020jul10.

What you are seeing above is a real actual screenshot for the 2014 Emmy Awards. The category is "Writing For A Variety Special," and ... the "67th Annual Tony Awards" is a nominee.

If there's any emotional arc the award-giver can relate to, it's the arc of giving out awards.

2020jun20.

can you imagine what a head rush the disney pr exec had when they conceptually realized this symbiotic, wild synergistical dreamland campaign at the meeting table that day

probably had a heart attack, died on the spot before suggesting it

disney mindtech squad rushes in along with Many Amazing Machines to quickly analyze his dying thoughts before they go dark

"I'VE FOUND IT ... OH GOD IT. IS. POTENT" [dies]

[another set of machines are wheeled in]

2020jun11.

hey now ... whoa ... having too much fun here ... oh christ

2020jun09.

Julie Nolke: Explaining the Pandemic to my Past Self (Pt 1 / Pt 2)

2020jun04.