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2006jul04. I am finally encoding my CDs into the popular “mp3” music format. While digging around, I’ve noticed that my Bill Pritchard disc has gone missing. This is horrible. I have so many discs that can’t even pretend to come close to that one. Not that I would know now, because perhaps it’s only a few feet away, or maybe it’s in another country. Bill: if you are reading this, please send another. Thank you. Also, while madly putting in discs to be read by FreeDB before it shuts down, I found out there’s an entry for Five Jerks w/a Tape Deck. Har.

2006jul04. Oooh, my first disc with actual material failure. As it turns out, I backed it up, but unknowingly after it had self-destructed. Heh, “effete delivery ... ” see, this is why I never write about music. Writing about music is like ... chewing about industry! You can use that if you want.

2006jul06. Ain’t nothing more touching than when two boxes hug. [via robotwisdom]

2006jul07. Friday Freeday.

Daily Show: Colbert bobbles the hand-off [1 min].
John Cleese: Graham Chapman’s Memorial [2 min]. (full text)
Ladytron: Destroy Everything You Touch [4 min]. The video is meh.
Penn & Teller: Bullshit! (Abstinence) [29 min; NSFW]
Jan Svankmajer: Meat Love [1 min] This was an old MTV bumper.
Stevie Washington: The Angry Youth [5 min] Also from MTV. I love the roughness, but they don’t have my favorite bit: “Punkbot. Punkbot. I keep wanting to say Punkblot.”
How is fish’s weight that Dora cat can carry? [via the morning news]

2006jul08. Turns out we bombed the Japanese first.

[ ... ] The catwalks were completed by the beginning of October [1935]. [ ... ] For the first time, it was possible for men to walk across the Golden Gate. [ ... ] It soon became common, but never ordinary, to cross between San Francisco and the Marin shore on foot. The views, when the fog permitted them, were almost airborne: the jagged Farallon Islands, some twenty-eight miles out to sea, the distant headlands at Point Reyes and Pedro Point; to the east, the whole sweep of the bay, with San Francisco, Oakland, and the less-tall Bay Bridge in their entirety; and below, the ship traffic now model-like beneath one’s feet. It was as if everything had been placed there in anticipation of this view.

There were, from the catwalks, sunrises that suggested the first day of the world, thundering Wagnerian sunsets and afterglows that summoned up suggestions of the last, and with the theatrical drama of a rising and falling curtain, the tumbling cataracts and sudden ghostly disappearances of fog.

Upon this spectacular and dramatically changing setting, the required routines of work were now imposed. A tow rope was added to the west footwalk, like an escalator, to assist men carrying materials up the steep gradient. At intervals along the walks, sheds were erected to store equipment and offer shelter from the wind and cold. There were even portable toilets, hundreds of feet in the air, on a footbridge suspended between two towers. The waste was collected in traps, giving rise to the temptation to open a full trap, as a kind of bomb, on the ships passing below.

The target selected was the Shensu Maru, a visiting Japanese freighter. It was, in part, a political gesture: this was a time of deteriorating relations between the United States and Japan; the Japanese, who had seized Manchuria in 1931, were now threatening to invade the rest of China and represented a growing threat to American interests in the Far East. The combined appeal of scatology and patriotism proved irresistible.

The Shensu Maru’s schedule was studied. On the footwalks, timing and measurements were secretly calculated. The plan was to open a trap directly over the Shensu’s smokestack. On the Shensu’s departure day, everything on the footwalk was prepared. The Shensu appeared on schedule, steaming toward the Gate in the northern, or outbound, shipping lane. The trap, whose bombardier remains unknown, was opened. The contents missed the stack but hit the ship, giving rise to immediate and outraged protest, but no formal diplomatic complaint. Although the perpetrators were never caught, it was the last larking incident of this particular nature on the determinedly high-class bridge project.

-- The Gate: The True Story of the Design and Construction of the Golden Gate Bridge, John Van Der Zee

2006jul11. It’s summertime again, everyone is having functions and parties and box socials. So again, I’m running up the church stairs and ringing the bell alerting the townspeople: Evite.com stays in business by selling the email addresses you enter to spammers. Don’t even bother looking at their privacy agreement, ”opting out,” etc, it’s all worded for the inviter, not the email addresses you happily enter for your goddamn sock hop. Come on, this is 1999 net.behavior. If you use Evite.com, you’re defective. Clean it up, Gibson.

2006jul14. Word Origin Puzzle! I’ve been using the compound “sweettocks” for years now, obviously a combination of the words “sweet” and “buttocks.” A friend of mine recently indicated that he heard one of his cousins saying the word. And yet, there are no hits on any of the major search engines nor MSN search. I tried it with one “t” and also with two “t"s but not with three. Perhaps it is from a movie or cartoon, I am not knowing.

2006jul14. Friday Freeday.

Daily Show: The Pitch. [5 min]
Japanese police v. Darth Vader. [30 sec]
Amy Sedaris on Conan O’Brien. [7 min] In this dramatic clip, Amy shows off her wooden squirrel bong and shows co-guest Martha Stewart how to make a jailcell toasted cheese sandwich ”if you go to prison.”
Make dominoes out of everything in your house. [2 min] I don’t think anyone has that many soaps. Wait for the soaps. I was thinking “yeah yeah, dominoes” but for some reason the soaps intrigued me. Perhaps it was the muffled sound. Soaps.

2006jul14. Rat king. If I was a rat, I would avoid getting in a rat king. Seems like trouble.

2006jul16. If you are having problems weaning yourself off of a certain foodstuff, carry it with you at all times. Then, when a traumatizing event occurs, gobble it all up. Now you are cured. I mean, except for that event. I’m sorry about that, really. *hugs*

2006jul17. Carpenter’s level earrings, etc.

2006jul17. Mail.

I have been purchasing a peppermint sea salt scrub at your Modesto store for over 1 year at a very good price. Last week, much to my chagrin, I discover you are no longer carrying this product!!! I hope this isn’t so!!! It’s just one of many good things I find there that other stores do not have or charge way too much.

I’ve repeatedly told Modesto they better shape up ... think I better go to Modesto.

2006jul17. “I took out my white-out pen and added one eyeball to each of the two protruding lamb chop bones ... Next thing I knew it was evening and I had been making faces out of photographs of food for almost five hours.”

2006jul20. Bay Area: Today is the fifth of six Spare the Local Government from the Pollution-Monitoring Devices Day, so mass transit is free today. Let’s all go to Gilroy!!!!

2006jul21. I promised myself I would never write about Sudoku. I promise myself a lot of things. [makes pouty face in mirror] Sudoku Combat is a head-to-head version, it keeps me on my toes. But there are two certain types of players that drive me nuts (along with tight butts). (1) The person who realizes they are being beaten, and then they quit the game. Lots of people play faster than me, but that doesn’t stop me, because sometimes these people are too fast for their own good, they slip up and that’s when I’m behind them, running them up and down with the glistening, steel-forged shiv of pure logic. (2) The person who doesn’t enter anything for a long time ... then suddenly starts entering numbers wholesale, like they were on fire, the numbers were. This is an idiot who has punched the board configuration into another program that solves the puzzle. It’s not really cheating, it’s more like accounting or data-entry.

2006jul21. Tomorrow is another “Spare the Air” day and I had such a great time today that I thought I should buy 50 loaves of bread tomorrow and distribute them and I ran home to call a friend who I thought would be all into it, and then I thought “wait, that’s one hundred dollars” so all y’all go hungry. You either have money, or time, but usually never both at the same time. Or at the same money. So I will buy one baguette tomorrow, and that baguette? She is mine.

2006jul21. Video Vriday.

Blue Nile: Downtown Lights
Blue Nile: Tinseltown in the Rain
Space Invaders is People [or here]
Chocoball: Macadamia [14 sec] (for the last second)
Problems With The General Populace Seem Insurmountable When You Are A Giant Ice Cream Cone Snack-Based Item [14 sec]
The Goddamned Koreans Copied One Of Our Snack Products Again [3 min] The host looks like a Japanese James Lipton. No one should have to look like James Lipton.
Sapporo: Love Beer? The young man does not want to hear the old man sing. This was my favorite commercial back when I watching Toshi & Matsu. Gotta watch my stories. [29 sec]
The Big Lebowski: The Fucking Short Version. See? Chenbot? Knife-edge? Here it comes.

2006jul21. A Porch and Flowering Meadow, Six Floors Up. I think I found it on satellite. I put it dead center, orange ground. Notice the circular water tank in the NYT article and the circular water tank in the same spot on the satellite image.

2006jul22. Interview with Errol Morris [via kottke]. Morris mentions a town fancifully named ”Nub City.” Insurance talk about Nub City. Nub City ... is Vernon, Florida? Which was Morris’ second documentary:

The documentarian originally set out to chronicle the town because of its reputation among insurance circles for having the highest rate of fraudulent claims for, hold your lunch, dismemberment performed for profit. While this investigation of “Nub City” would have produced an equally fascinating, if entirely different, sort of documentary, Morris was forced to change gears when his subjects tried to kill him.

That would explain why I couldn’t remember any nubbers in the film – not that I remember much of it anymore, ‘cept that turkey hunter.

2006jul22. I have never had a sound associated with email arrival ... for nearly 15 years now ... but now sometimes I’m reading or off puttering and I wanted something to alert me ... so I chose a recording of a pinball-based solenoid ... a “natural” sound, very satisfying, not BEEP BOOP. Though one time a bird was rummaging around on the roof and I thought I had new mail. [standard Cardhouse boilerplate about willingness to pay good money to be able to strangle anyone with those dipshit cellphone ringtones deleted for brevity]

2006jul23. Mail.

Error: Interview with Error Morris

ERROR: USER ERROR, TRY AGAIN (a week later: ohhhhh, ERROR Morris. I thought there was a non-problem with the URL. Fixed.)

2006jul23. CNN: Brain-powered computation. As usual, CNN gives the plum tech writing assignments to the janitor:

Already, the Brown researchers say, this kind of technology can enable a hooked-up human to write at 15 words a minute – half as fast as the average person writes by hand. Remember, though, that silicon-based technology typically doubles in capacity every two years.

So if improved hardware is all it takes to speed up the device, Cyberkinetics’ chip could be able to process thoughts as fast as speech – 110 to 170 words per minute – by 2012. Imagine issuing commands to a computer as quickly as you could talk.

“Remember, though, that capacity doubles every two years, so I’m going to pretend that has significant bearing on the speed of the device and I’m going to double the speed six times, so I can write my visionary last sentence. Imagine.”

2006jul24. Doc: Ukulele Addiction: Contract It

2006jul25. Doc’s Book of the Week: The Captured: A True Story of Abduction by Indians on the Texas Frontier.

2006jul26. Lincoln’s “slavery forever” document [via doc]

2006jul28. [Cardhouse] Hello. Hello there. Got something “special” for Friday Freeday. I have “put up” the Cardhouse archives, it is Part II of my three-part plan to divest myself of little trinket-like writerly things for the larger, more complex writerly things that God surely put me on this planet to execute, complete, and appear on morning TV talk shows to promote because I am also handsome and this is good for marketing. [pets own head gently] This brain-stabbing nonsense goes back to 1995 (along with scattered whatevers going back to 1987). That is a lot of jibber-jabbering. If you have been reading for awhile in the past, I think if you go back and re-read some of it you will find that it’s not as good as you remember it to be, which is like a lot of things. We’ve changed. We’ve all changed. We grow, and we exponentially accelerate to the best versions of each of ourselves which necessitates leaving jokey little websites like this in the rear-view mirror, with sort of a half-wistful smile that’s near cracking. If you are relatively new to this stuntspacular website experience, then you can now waste your time actually experiencing what weblogs were like back when there were no weblogs. Man, didn’t know how good I had it back then. I miss nutter mail, the mail that made you go “Yeah. I’d hang with that email person.” Now our brains have been pureed into a million little bits and there’s only so much we can portion out. Is this any way to live? Ask yourself this question.

Here’s a sampling of the “non-worst” entries that I ran into. There are others that are probably even non-worster, perhaps. Knock yourself out, piggies.

Nigerian scam letter from 1995 | Stairway of the Edmund Fitzgerald | The Message of Friendship | TV Reporter engulfed | A song about prions | Dynamic cat names | Non-dynamic CueCat wrangling | Wisdom | Sushi racing | Sharing Wisdom w/Others | Rocket-based kitchen appliances | Lyrics to Goldfinger | Planning the dinosaur | Fuggin’ Squirrels | The End of Everything | How To Be Funny and Thus Have Sex | The 97%-Not-Helping Toothpick Letters | Martin v. The Donut Ro-bots | Bugs: A Love Story | Hershey’s Countersinks | Excerpts from Inflight Magazine | Baby Boomers Want Trinkets | Advertisers + joking UPS drivers | Japanese ideograms | Cleaver Wielded in Bangkok Airport | Border crossing | Bugs: A Food Story

And of course, the start of The Geese Saga. Poor geese.

Okay, that’s enough already. Observations after looking at ten or so years of archives:

- About 70% of the links are dead. Too much reliance on news feeds in the early days. It has taken me awhile to learn that “news” is just a distraction, even if it’s quick little bits that take two seconds to read. Or rather I used to know this but forgot somewhere along the way.

- For some reason I got a lot of weirdo news articles from Fox, of all places. Those links are all dead. News sources tend to die, except for the NYT or Washington Post, maybe [FX: Nandotimes-branded tumbleweed rolls by]. A lot of other sources have changed their URLs, and I’ll just leave those for someone else to dig up if it’s that important to read what my snotty reply was to whatever horrific/stupid topic it was that I was foaming off about.

- Other random websites have also died, changed URLs, etc. Sometimes I tracked down the new URL, sometimes I did not. Sometimes I killed a dead URL, sometimes I did not. I have no desire to keep up with this, in the future there will be a little piece of software that does this for me. It will come in the form of a daily pill that costs $27, and Medicare doesn’t cover it. One website I tried to recover all links for was Word.com, which some of you may remember was the best website in the entire world. Some stuff wasn’t properly archived, mostly the image-based sections. Here’s one article from their “Work” section. Perhaps one day I will go on a big Wordhunt and corral everything together. Perhaps someone already has. Another: Flight Attendant.

- Once you start eyeballing the entries to fix ‘em up, it’s like a whirlpool sucking you in. In general I just made little text filters to fix punctuation, ellipses trouble, my semi-flirtation with UK-style punctuation etc. I found my earlier “link the entire paragraph” style annoying enough that I tried to pare down the more egregious samples.

- At some point in the past I switched from a static home page to a typical weblog format, back when there were about twenty weblogs and we all met each month at Buck’s to set the future course of weblog development and eat overpriced pancakes while looking at SNOW (Shit Nailed On Walls). I’m not really sure how far the weblog goes back. 1997. Earlier? Don’t know. If there’s anything left of the archive before then, it’s on Mac Zip disks. I don’t have a Mac at my disposal, though I do still have a Zip drive. I’ve been intending to remove everything from the Zip disks and trash the whole lot for years now. I did finally replace the Fry’s $0-with-rebate PC speakers fished out of a dumpster, though. So there’s that.

- Yes. The feed is coming. Much sooner than later now. Unless I chuck everything – though there’s not much of anything to chuck – and go on walkabout.

- Eventually Cardhouse will also have tags and stuff like this will be rolled into the main archive. Someday.

- This archive represents a significant educational resource for individuals and institutions interested in the dawning of the global weblog phenomenon and [starts choking on own tongue] woulGAAKKKK I GLARRH--

In summation: big ... fat ... fuck. Wagons ho.