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Chinese New Year's Parade San Francisco during Elsewhere Numismatic Society infiltration; Hazard street art created by Elsewhere Philatelic Society President Jimmy, ferried to Boston per his instructions; EPS Mailman Ted & EPS Lectern Phil keep watch over Mailman Miek's Mental Mold Mobile Mediation Unit (MMMMMMU).

2013 items of note: In a momentary lapse of judgment, the Cardhouse weblog was moved June 21st of 2012 to an external website creation site called "tumblr.com." This problematic platform was used until the end of 2014. The relevant "content" from this unfortunate time has been scraped off and dumped here.


January 2013.

2013jan01.

Look at that running board

You could have a picnic on that there

What happened to America

What

2013jan02. https://vimeo.com/17188504

Tom Sachs, A Selby Film

2013jan03. I don't want corn syrup anymore

It is not natural to squeeze syrup out of corn

I want maple syrup

Pouring out of a maple tree

Dripping out of wood

The tree will give me life-affirming sugars

Fuck corn

2013jan06. There is an exciting clause in trademark law called "abandonment." If you abandon your trademark for three years, anyone else can use it sans lawyerly beatdown. It's the lawwwwww of the West. So it's time to be grabbing up trademarks here at Cardhouse Trademark Abandonment Vacuum Rightsholder LLC GmbH. I'd already declared my new ownership of Snowlets back in 2000 and in the ensuing years/decade+ I totally forgot to do anything with them. Following the rules of trademark abandonment I am hereby and forthwith grabbing Snowlets from myself; don't give me any problems, me. Oh, I'm going to USE Snowlets, use the HELL out of them. Look!

Here's the Snowlets –- correction, MY Snowlets™ –- literally being abandoned at the end of the Nagano 1998 Olympic Games of Abandonment. "Go on, get out of here you sucks!" NO ONE IS GOING TO DO THAT TO MY SNOWLETS™. Look at how cute they are!

God, Sukki needs a nose job. They could all use a few minutes in the bowling ball polisher, really. Getting on that. Anyway, this is my declaration of trademark, however that works. Snowlets™™™! Back OFF!

2013jan06.

Listen to that silky bass line

Gonna have to do something with that

"Anything and Everything For My Unabandoned Snowlets™"℠

2013jan07. divinenonchalance:

The PUNK PLANET Interview with Jeff Hull
by Aaron Shuman, at Mosswood Park 2002

Nonchalance is the name of an irregular army of guerrilla artists who have blanketed the streets of Oakland, California in defense of "original Oakland charm," and Jeff Hull is the person around whom this loose ...

2013jan08. The first phase in the Snowlets™ Reclamation Project is to extract all the valuable intel. Let's quickly slurp up the color scheme and see what we have in an abstract fashion.

Right away I can see a problem, some of the colors aren't different enough. I think the top two are my own problem in not selecting representative colors, but the bottom two butterscotchy ones are clearly nearly canon. I like butterscotch pudding just as much as the next butterscotch pudding maven, probably more; I'm going to make a great old person. Okay! More tweaking in the colorlab, but it's a good colorstart and also colorlunchtime. Let's meet back here tomorrowish to talk about extant Snowlet™ lore.

2013jan09.

2013jan16.

2013jan18. I have mentioned The Institute before, it is a film that has been selected to be in this year's Slamdance festival which I know nothing about. The Institute features interviews with people who participated in the ~2.7 year alternate reality game, The Games of Nonchalance (I have written a small thing about it here). It is receiving accolades and various articles are touting it as "one to watch" etc. The Village Voice featured it in an article titled The Movies to Know from Sundance –- and the Year Ahead. In it, Scott Foundas writes:

Thousands of people for whom everyday life is evidently not exciting enough happily took the plunge.

Then he wraps up the article with this tidy bon mot:

Rarely have I felt so absorbed by a movie about people I found so incredibly annoying.

I may be a bit biased here, since I (A) participated in the Games of Nonchalance (B) know a majority of the people who were interviewed (C) hate people who look down their nose at others, but let me express my love for the first excerpt. I love that there are people like this. I love that everyday life is good enough for some people. Why even struggle at the restraints, just lie back and let it all wash over you. Good ... good. What's that saying? "Reality's what you make it"? If you don't make it, you don't eat.

PS: The Institute's associated website now has an online induction form here. Be careful, it might not be getting a latte nor driving to work, for example.

2013jan24.

One world ... one scarf. I don't understand why it took us so long to get to this point. Maybe the war helped. Wars help everything, really.

2013jan28.

2013jan31.


February 2013.

2013feb03. Got some hi-falutin' concepsual ideers floating around in me headspace, so now I'm on the look out for "estate sales" which I gave up on years ago. Too much work, wasn't really knocking it out of the park enough. Today I saw a sign while motoring about, so I thought, oh, I'll make a quick stop off. And there were more signs directing me higher into the hills of Oakland, higher, the houses kept getting bigger, higher still, then the gas gauge light came on, higher. Finally ended up in Richie Rich's backyard looking at old man tools. Everything was overpriced/rusted, so I left. While on the road, I asked a bicyclist how to get to a gas station I saw on the way up and he said, "Oh, in town?" We're about a mile away. From town, I guess. I arrived in town and stopped in to fill up. The proprietors were celebrating Chinese New Year/the "big game" with a large prepared feast in the garage. There's a year of the snake roasted suckling pig in bay one of the service station in town.

2013feb10.

Coconut scraper.

2013feb12.

So I have this problem.

My housemate, a friend of mine, made the ULTIMATE GLOBAL CANDY CONGLOMERATE SCORE awhile ago. There are these 99-cent stores in the United States, and somehow they are holding on even though it's completely ridiculous, nothing costs 99 cents anymore … nothing you want to buy, anyway. But that's how money works. You ever stop to think about that? The Art Deco age, what the fuck, how come we can't have that NOW? No, everything is made out of pressed chipmunks and quicklime and it looks like shit. But that's because back then, a dollar was worth nearly a dollar .. but if you keep printing dollars, then a dollar becomes, what is it now, five cents? Less? Something like that. Nobody talks about that just like they don't talk about the US nuclear arsenal, because it's all deeply insane, like a Pousse-café of madness.

So. There are these big choklit bars that Toblerone makes (they are owned by Kraft, you may have heard of them: they are famous for selling plastic-wrapped squares of orange plastic they cleverly named "American Cheese"), and normally they cost seven to nine STRONG AMERICAN DOLLARS, depending.

My friend strolled into the 99-cent store, and there were the Toblerone bars. FOR A BUCK (I mean, 99 cents). Come ON, is that not the ULTIMATE DEAL OF THE CENTURY? So he bought two cases (24X BONUS MULTIPLIER), because you know, you would do the same, or more.

The problem is that he is just casually waltzing through these bars. A nibble here, a tiny bite there. FINISH HIM! FINISH HIM! I don't know how people do this. If I bought two cases of Toblerone bars for a dollar a pop (I mean, 99 cents), the next day I would have no Toblerone bars and I would be dead, the recent recipient of a botched Tobleronitisectomy (look it up).

So I've been trying to come up with reasons the Toblerone bars are just fucking GONE one day. I could blame it on the cats. Scatter a few bits of wrapper here and there. "They ate them. They are insane for chocolate. In-sane. Like a Pousse-café of craziness."

The part that drives me nuts is that I went to the store and they had none. Then he went back to the store THE SAME DAY and sweet-talked one of the workers into checking in the back … and scored another box.

Toblerone.

2013feb19. Look chumps, I have preached the gospel of Kona Brewing's Koko Brown for many moons and we are in the zeitgeist, Koko Brown-wise. Safeway's got it. Bevmo's got it, but hold on to your DLs, they like to run them through a scanner so they can slurp up alls your datas (which will probably be declared illegal by the time they figure out another way to hoover that shit out of you ... sub-dermal implants, optical-rez-conductor pads, I don't know, I'm dead, it's 2057ish and you're absorbing this from the 21CEN NetBoluss3). So get out there and drown in the coco-nut goodness. It's only available for a short time. Forced scarcity is my primary philosophical pivot point, so go appreciate it while getting sloshed.

I wouldn't bother with Kona's "find beer" application, it's been throwing false positives/negatives left and right, at least in the bay area.

2013feb20.

Oakland 2013.

2013feb21.

Classy. San Francisco 2013.

2013feb22.

2013feb23.

Oakland 2013.

2013feb24.

San Francisco 2013.

2013feb25.

Drains in sidewalk. San Francisco Chinatown 2013.

2013feb26. I got one! I got a Toblerone. I just had to be drunk for a long time and whine about chocolate on the way home from the bar even though in the part of town ("in town") we live in there is no good chocolaterie. I will remember this gambit for The Future.


March 2013.

2013mar01.

Found in street, Oakland 2013.

2013mar03.

The series Warhol Denied was conceived in 2006, after news of possible errors in the denying of artworks by The Andy Warhol Art Authentication Board. The series began with the replication of 12 versions of Warhol's Self Portrait from 1964, those works were sent to the Board to go through the formal process of being evaluated and then stamped "DENIED."

2013mar17.

Why check your work, or have another department do it, or even enable the common folk using your repository to tick a checkbox that reads "This is ridiculous"?

Just to be clear, this exact same error (pulling away while the camera is activated) goes on for several issues. Even pages smeared, odd pages shot correctly but smaller than they're supposed to be.

To be even clearer, it's not just this magazine. I've seen it over and over again. And it's not like there are thousands of copies of these periodicals and books floating around. I got to watch one library sell off a big chunk of early 20th century magazines, then saw them sold on ebay, then saw them re-appear on ebay as cut-up advertisements a month or so later. But the library had them scanned, so there's that, I suppose.

Next: let's compare a mass-scanned book to a book I shot with a $65 camera!

2013mar17.

This ad theoretically appears in a December 1912 edition of Youth's Companion but as I mentioned earlier, the pages are trashed … especially as we approach the end of the year and the scanner operator becomes allllll sweepy!

Also much love to the word "dainty." Let's bring that back. Dainty.

2013mar20.

Eagle get away from my bread

not yours

2013mar21.

Back in the Macros2000 days my friend and I used to talk about things that Might Make Us Money. Of course when you explore that option you just go whole hog on it and come up with ridiculous ideas you know would work but wouldn't implement for one reason or twelve. One of them was to gather up all of the advertising macros and put them in a computer game along with their various product logos/videos etc. Not a good idea. Also: not original.

The image above appears in a Butler Bros. catalog from 1918. You can find the full page and many other pages/years at Old Wood Toys. Dot com.

A day later: I just talked to another friend about doing research and how you just can't follow every little interesting path. What's Zylonite? Tinkertoy is that old? And etc, endlessly etc.

2013mar22. I spent 30 minutes preparing some large photos to display here. Sometimes the warden lets me show you big photos and sometimes the warden doesn't. I set the settings that people have said makes the warden a more mellower sort but the settings have failed. Because the warden cannot seem to make up its random warden mind, I do not see this platform being worth the investment in time and coding and hair-tearing. Because I like big photos. I will still post things here from time to time but reluctantly and with a steady eye on the exit sign. Signed, all snitty.

2013mar23.

Google Maps. Ever have one of those friends that tries to help too much?

2013mar24.

The Weinstock Lubin Co. catalog 1891.

2013mar26.

Say, looking to furnish your bathroom? I have just the tub for you.

2013mar26. I was reading a little bit of the Wikipedia entry on the uncanny valley after watching a BBC presenter grossly simplify the actual meaning of the phrase. The article has a number of theories listed to explain why the valley ("a dip in a graph of the comfort level of humans as a function of a robot's human likeness") exists. "Mate selection," "mortality salience," etc. Several theories, but I don't see "Socio-pathological face-eating assurance" listed. That is, someone or something that isn't quite right/all there and may actually eat your face. Think of the last half-hour of Norman Bates in Psycho, or the 90s re-do of Snap from Rice Krispies. Same sort of revulsion. I don't know why this article limits itself to "robotics and 3D computer animation" and I don't know why more people aren't coming out and saying "You know why that robot disturbs me? Because it's acting like it really wants to eat my face."

2013mar27.

I was thinking about the ending to The Truman Show the other day and wanted to see it. Of course every Youtube version of it is either chopped off/up or set to user-provided even-more-schmaltzy music etc. The other night it showed up on IFC (I believe) so I synched up my glide path with it as it was coming into the final ten minutes. IFC decided it was really pressed for time and ended it a few minutes earlier (!), exactly when the two security guards are wondering what else is on TV and flip the channel. Probably some junior programmer pulling a bit of meta-meta-referencing. [Update: reading chatter that possibly indicates that this is how it ends. Okay, there still was a piece missing, however. Unless I imagined a scene with my amazing scene-imagining mind.]

Also, to flip that hundred thousands digit, Truman is going to have to celebrate his 273th birthday plus change under the glaring, unblinking eye of the masses.

2013mar30. In the article Is Google Bringing Us Too Close To Art? Professor James Elkins explains that "some scans on the Internet surpass any reasonable, historically supported kind of viewing." Google scans are too good, and surpass artist's ideals about how close people should get to their works, optically. To present an "example of the over-the-top seeing that the ultra-high resolution images make possible," Elkins shows images from Seurat's Sunday Afternoon on the Island of la Grand Jatte as presented by Google Art Project. "Seurat wants us to see [two women that] are lying in the shadow of a tree. That is more or less what you will see if you go to Chicago and stand in front of the painting." But with Google Art Project, suddenly the floor drops out from beneath us and we are immersed in a horrorshow: "What a strange face this is. The woman seems to have eight or ten lavender-colored eyes, a bit like a spider." Oh god OH GOD. His point: "Clearly Seurat did not expect people to see this. But what, exactly, did he want people to see? That is not at all a simple question; in fact, it's one of the oldest and most important tenets of art criticism. For consideration of a piece of art in these terms, Google Art Project doesn't help at all. You cannot tell what the limits of ordinary vision are. For that, you have to go to the original." He stays with Seurat, pointing out a "monster" dog: "They are all effects of his ‘dots.'"

Seurat didn't want people to see the dots. Clearly. Google Art Project has exposed the seedy underbelly of art. Why. Why.

Here's another piece by Seurat.

Oh wait, my mistake, that was created by a pre-schooler. Why does a pre-schooler know about Pointillism? Because they teach that stuff really early on. Because it's awesome. See the writing below the painting? "Seurat knew a lot about dots"? That was a line in an episode of a TV PSA series called "Snipets" put out by Field Communications back in the 1970s (I'd do a search for it at Fuzzy Memories but apparently their site has malware on it at the moment). The camera zoomed way in on Sunday Afternoon just like you can with Google Art Project. They played this particular spot a lot. So if you happened to stroll by a TV back about 1975, you were exposed to this insider knowledge normally kept out of reach by The Gatekeepers of Culture, apparently.

But you know, thanks for trying to save ourselves from ourselves. Lot of that going around these days.

PS: Also, what an absolutely bizarre choice for an example. Dots are how the damn painting works. This article was supposed to be published in The Atlantic, wasn't it.

2013mar31.

Wallace Bros. circus poster (completed auction)


April 2013.

2013apr02. I had a little funtime interaction at my local national beverage shop the other day. They were hot on scanning my driver's license whereas I was totally not hot on it. I refused, and the manager immediately came up and said "If we can't scan your ID, you can't buy the beer." So I said "thank you," and left the premises. I was halfway into a letter to the CEO of the company when I strolled by the relevant California civil code and as it turns out, "any business may swipe a driver's license or identification card issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles in any electronic device […] to verify age or the authenticity of the driver's license or identification card." No one can fake the back of a California driver's license, it's all COMPUTERY back there. I have also read that this store's policy is to scan IDs of anyone under 50. Because they might be a 20-year-old in a mask, I suppose. The exciting thing about this is that if you don't have a license, or your license is suspended or expired, you cannot buy beverages at this company. Even if you're 49. First, the state has to verify that you exist, give you a number and a passcard, and then you can buy alcohol. The store I'm speaking of uses a specific manufacturer/brand of scanner that is advertised as having the ability to "download to a marketing database" even though the civil code indicates that "a business may not retain or use any of the information obtained by that electronic means for any purpose other than as provided herein." So you know, just don't turn on that ability. Also on the scan train: Target.

You can also get to have your card scanned when you return something at select merchants to prevent "abuse." If you're bored you can mind-mission creep that out twenty years from now and have a good chuckle. "You'd like to purchase some Chuckles? Please scan your ID."

Because today has been a suck job day of defeat at both the state and federal level (don't ask), I pettily present to you some unedited screen grabs from the ID scanner's broken-ass website.

Professional performance = PROFORMANCE. Also no one has called an ID reader cool ever.

Inside the scanner: not electronics ... hay.

2013apr05.

This is part of an advertisement from 1910. "I am a Lemon" is the best candy name ever and I've seen tons of candy names.

2013apr06.

There's a new taste sensation in town

It is: broasted coconut drink

It's fresh

It's BROASTED

2013apr09.

Mamie Lamb ‒ The High Rollers Extravaganza Co. (via Weird Vintage via Library of Congress)

I asked the house lobsterologist if that size was even possible ever and he said it was perhaps just a little bit exaggerated. Since I am the resident stoveologist, I can tell you that no one can actually sit on a stove roaring with fire like that. I would have liked to have seen this show, but I was too young at the time.

Retronaut has more photos.

2013apr10.

Le Pamphlet Atomique. Jean Nocher.

I have determined that Tumblr resizes photos when the "text" option is used as opposed to the "photo" option (assuming you have edited the html or selected a large-photo template to allow large photos). It is when people wish to add more than one photo to a post which is of course madness. In addition, if you have a very long photo, Tumblr will reduce it to a tiny speck. I have an amusing workaround that I may implement in the future (assuming it works and) if every little thing can just stop being a cosmic struggle for a few days.

People will look back on this policy to limit the output of people trying to document the lives of their cats and say "Damn, what were they thinking back then?" Trust me, I'm from 1994.

2013apr10.

2017: I tried to post this on tumblr and it turned it into a tiny postage stamp because it was too large. It's not art, but still, I don't need size limits ... so eventually I left. [SFX: somber music]

2013apr12. https://vimeo.com/63487412

Tom Sachs lecture at SFAI April 3rd 2013.

2013apr12.

Hustlers, Hoaxsters, Pranksters, Jokesters and Ricky Jay (1996)

2013apr15.

Arte: Künstler hautnah ‒ Evol Streetart Berlin 2011

2013apr16.

Ah, yes, Tumblr Shrinky Dink in full effect. Preparing escape capsule, flipping off central computer through porthole.

2013apr23.

Scribbler 2

2013apr24.

Adam Savage's One Day Builds: Theo Jansen's Strandbeest Model Kit. Features: knolling discussion.

2013apr25. [Blade Runner behind-the-scenes video deleted]

Part 1 of 3. "Thank you for kicking this delicate, emotional note … right in the nuts."

2013apr26.

Vintage Arabic Iran mixed lot chewing gum wrappers


May 2013.

2013may03.

"Religion." Chazz Dean & James Siena of Watchface. As seen on Dangerous Film Club w/Graham Chapman.

2013may09. I'm going to pop some tags
I got twenty dollars in my pocket
Lonely days are gone
I'm a comin' home
My baby wrote me a letter

So my sane living environment of the last 2.7 years or so goes poof at the end of May or June. I am hoping for something a little better than the silver-plattered bullshit I was served before this most recent stable patch came along. If you know of some shared living arrangement in the bay area that is not a beige-carpeted flood dungeon, drop me a line. I'd love to just rent some goddamn warehouse space that has an unfinished bathroom and room for a hotplate so I can build my own freak-ass custom living space, but you play the caste you're served/semi-chose. And now, 723 photos of Mittens really going to town on a ball of yarn.

2013may15.

Aeronautics Magazine January 1930.


June 2013.

2013jun03.

2013jun06.

Cho-Cho Chocolate Malted Ice Cream (1940)

2013jun08.

1940

2013jun09.

Chicken Dinner candy bar (~1940s)

2013jun12.

I don't fear flying, I detest it. Security theatre, riding in a metal cabin six miles in the sky while being rammed by 3D elephants, etc … so every three or four years I take an endurance train trip to the east coastish and back. As always, this one was definitely my last until I forget about that again. So read it. The 2013 update is at the end: here.

2013jun14.

Auction for bill: Manhattan french confectioner A. Iauch, 1869. Note the last line: "Crash on the floor extra." Six dollars in 1869 = approximately $103.45 in 2013 dollars, according to the first inflation calculator I found. The "Bill of Fare" bit comes out to about $2500, so that's a lot of dinner … is it okay if we all just [FX: motions to floor]? You'd think "crashing on the floor" would be a term that showed up mid 20th century, but you would be wrong … and when I say "you" I mean me.

2013jun16.

Birds are always going to be in the amateur league.

2013jun17.

Source

2013jun27.

Mini War Wagon.


July 2013.

2013jul09. I finally bailed on my old dentist and went to a new one. The last time I was there two or three years ago, the old dentist was still using the cardboard bitewings, the olde-timey X-Ray machine, etc. The new guy, he's got digital video screens all over the place, a bitewing device that doesn't taste like cardboard because it is not cardboard, and the X-Rays go straight to digital which he immediately shows me. This shift in dental technology (or "dentech") also apparently means you get approximately 70% less X-Ray exposure. A good thing, unless you're a fan of X-Rays. All I'm saying is, if you're still going to some weird-smelling carpeted sub-basement with tiny doors and they're shooting you with a Victorian Era Mysterious X-Ray Electrical Invisible Wire Device, go find someone with up-to-date equipment. Years from now, people will marvel that we even subjected ourselves to X-Rays at all instead of N-Rays, of course.

2013jul10.

Sears catalog 1942.

2013jul11.

I know, I know. It sounded like a swell deal Phineas was selling. "Come with me and see the world in my magical half-flower carriage pulled by baby chicks with tragically malformed necks," he said. "Butterflies all over the place. We'll see the Louvre, whatever that is." Sounded like a dream. So you got in, the carriage started up, and then he immediately turned you into a goddamn chocolate egg.

Still, he took you to the Louvre, didn't he?

2013jul22.

George Ziegler's DEMON LUNCH.

DEMON LUNCH

Want DEMON LUNCH

This century BLOWS

Want to GO BACK to DEMON LUNCH

2013jul26.

Faile (2004; Tokyo)

2013jul28.

give me back my chocolate bug

not yours

2013jul30. O.W.: No, no, no. One complaint per table is all, unless you want them to spit in the food. Let me tell you a story about George Jean Nathan, America's great drama critic. Nathan was the tightest man who ever lived, even tighter than Charles Chaplin. And he lived for 40 years in the Hotel Royalton, which is across from the Algonquin. He never tipped anybody in the Royalton, not even when they brought the breakfast, and not at Christmastime. After about ten years of never getting tipped, the room-service waiter peed slightly in his tea. Everybody in New York knew it but him. The waiters hurried across the street and told the waiters at Algonquin, who were waiting to see when it would finally dawn on him what he was drinking! And as the years went by, there got to be more and more urine and less and less tea. And it was a great pleasure for us in the theater to look at a leading critic and know that he was full of piss. And I, with my own ears, heard him at the ‘21' complaining, saying, "Why can't I get tea here as good as it is at the Royalton?" That's when I fell on the floor, you know.

Lunch Conversations with Orson Welles, 1983 (excerpt).

2013jul31.

Family of cracker addicts (1930s)


August 2013.

2013aug04.

Costume shop selection. "I dunno, do you have one in more of a mauvey-teal, tealy-mauvey?"

2013aug05.

I miss the old Wedgewood stove with Robertshaw Oven Control and stovetop griddle.

I miss a lot of things … like my legs.

Whoops, heh, here they are! Sun got in my eyes.

2013aug14.

Free yourself from the shackles of Mozilla, America

2013aug14.

The Weekly Bee Cook Book (1888).

2013aug15.

Scott's Emulsion advertisement (The Weekly Bee 1888). You could almost wear a cod as a costume, back in the day.

2013aug17. Bloglines.com has not been loading, for me, since the near-end of July. I got one tiny message out of their staff awhile ago, indicating that they were looking into the problem. Other people are having problems; one person recommended clearing the cache. That didn't work for me, but what did work was using some "Internet Explorer," which I had stored on a high shelf behind some oily rags in the garage. Seemed like it was every month back in the day we'd all say to each other "oh, what did IE screw up now?" and we all had to patch up our websites for them. So glad to be away from that.

So do this. Jump on IE, load up bloglines, get into your account and as soon as you see your weblog list, save that as a page (click the gear icon, click file, save as) as a Just-In-Case backup. Then save the page as an xml file in bloglines itself by going to the settings page. Then you can import that xml file into other weblog readers like bloglovin.com.

I tried using Bloglines in IE but it's not working. It might be the spotty connection I have right now, it might be Bloglines. Don't care, rocket is blasting off the surface forever.

2013aug22.

Them! (1954)

2013aug23.

Spinning Pups (1981?). Rick Monzon. Artwork is better than what's inside. I have some friends that keep one of these around just for the cover. See also: Lucky Mojo ‒ Magnetic Dogs.

2013aug24. My friend has some fun dogs. One, a by-the-book Doberman Pinscher, the other a strange hybrid of a Boxer and I don't know what. The Doberman, you could leave the gate to the yard wide open; she wouldn't step beyond the invisible barrier between Here and There. The Boxer spent most of her day trying to dig to the Indian Ocean, hassling passing squares, and exiting the premises in any way possible.

The gate to the yard was old and needed replacement. When obviously evil people would pass by (mail carriers, skateboarders, people accompanying dogs, breathing people, the French, etc), both dogs would run straight at the gate and slam against it with their paws. "MY LAND, INTRUDER!" On one day, they went through the gate-slamming routine and it popped the latch. But you know, there's this awful wretch just outside that needs a dose of barking, so they'd keep banging on the gate … and the latch would re-engage.

The dogs now had their own secret. The Boxer eventually figured out how to take advantage of this momentary tear in the fabric of the Here/There dichotomy and would haul ass out of the yard whenever these seemingly random opportunities became available.

It was fun watching her tear up and down the streets at a full burn. Freedom! And, as we do, stopping to sniff telephone poles and fire hydrants. "Chauncey's been here, he lives down the block and is fed sub-par kibble ... I'll leave his mark. This time."

You could chase her, but that just gave her a work out and put you one step closer to myocardial infarction. You're not catching her. Once during a party, a guest left the gate open two milliseconds too long, and the dog bolted Thereward. I lunged at her twenty milliseconds after this, feeling her collar gently scrape against the tips of my fingers while mid-air, eating brick, laughing.

To bring her back inside, my friend would get some cat food and dribble it on the sidewalk leading into the yard. A few seconds/minutes later the Boxer would be licking her way up the sidewalk, past you, past the closing, locking gate.

Until the next time, and the time after that. But nobody knew how the Boxer was getting out. My friend went on vacation, and I watched the house from inside it using the powers of observation.

One day, after the Boxer had escaped, I went straight out into the street to see if she was still on it or had moved her scanning procedure over a block. She was up about a block and a half, she was down a half block, she was running rings around me, just out of reach. "Hahahahaha, eat it, Jack." Then, full tear-ass away. Repeat. There was a woman across the street walking two smaller dogs. The Boxer wasn't paying any attention to them, she was in Exultant Freedom Mode. The woman wrinkled her face, looked up at me, and exclaimed: "Why ‒ You should keep your dog on a leash! Look what it's doing!"

[Pause] "Not my dog."

"Well –- " you could see it coming because people need something to complain about " –- you should catch it!" And right then, with comic timing, the dog hit the afterburners and shot right between us.

"Lady ... no one is catching that dog."

I went back in the house for some delicious cat food.

Almost a week later, I just happened to be watching the dogs having a freak-out with yet another outsider when the latch popped. The gate was open for a half-second and shut with a click. Case ... cracked.

2013aug25.

21 Balançoires (21 Swings)

2013aug27.

Left: Sign, Pretend Detroit 1999. This was an "improvement" of a similar text-only sign on Eight Mile in Detroit. Detroit has mountains and wide-open skies. Right: Sign, Actual Zurich 2013. Zurich's Drive-In Prostitution Facility Is Officially Open For Business. Really it could be "Prostitution Drive-In," I think. "Facility" sounds so clinical. You're going to scare away the customers.

2013aug30.

1) Hershey used to make a gum. I remember chewing chocolate gum when I was growing up, but it was not Hershey gum. I am somewhat sure that Hershey also made chocolate gum. Sentence ending with gum.

2) Look, you can eat white fish, or you can eat beets or eggs … or you could really knock your food value out of the park with Hershey's Cocoa. Do the math. Hershey's.


September 2013.

2013sep01.

Top: "Combined Advertising Device and Signal Support" trademark application 1930.

Bottom: Street sign + fake street sign, Nogales Mexico 2005.

2013sep21.

Antikamnia. Canadian Druggist August 1894.

2013sep28.

Rain ‒ Good Candy. Hollywood Candy Company. 1933. HEY KIDS


October 2013.

2013oct07.

I made some of those minimal goddam movie posters you jackoffs like so much

2013oct08.

KRE-MEL Chocolate Flavor Dessert. Makes milk delicious. Accepted by the American Medical Association Committee on Hurgle.

2013oct09.

You should probably check out How May We Hate You? And more specifically, this entry

2013oct11.

Distributed to Berkeley-area businesses

2013oct12.

This should be just a quick refresher course for everyone at this point. For more information, please reference this text. LA O-BA-MA should RUN for the ROSES .. ORION!

2013oct16.

So skillz


November 2013.

2013nov03.

Transactions of the Asiatic Society of Japan (1965). "Took the shape of her lover" but apparently not his weight. Or maybe the tanuki was still tanuki-sized. "Hey babe, let's do this stranglin' thing! Yeah, I know, why am I 50cm tall? Long story, I'll tell you later. Now where's that rope?" I'll be signing copies of my new book, The Tanuki: Nature's Ass-Clown, at the Breverford County 7-11 this Thursday.


December 2013.

2013dec03.