Thursday, September 29, 2005

Conferences and Community X

Thanks to an angel -- and barring unforeseen mishaps -- I'm going to BlogOn 2005! Look for more quality confblogging... and news from my current secret project.

From the Reading Pile: Prescription for a Post-Season Media Diet

Back in April, I penned a short essay about the loss of America's pastime -- and where I turned for my baseball fix: sports magazines. That piece has now been published in the new issue of Zisk, "the baseball magazine for people who hate baseball magazines."

Especially because we're nearing the end of the baseball season this year, it's well worth a read. The editors have printed it with care, even keeping my typos true. (That's one risk of "free"-lancing: If you're unpaid, you're edited less stringently. Harf!) The first person to email me and identify the unintential misprint will receive a surprise. Send $3 to 801 Eagles Ridge Road, Brewster, NY 10509 for Zisk #11, the fall 2005 issue.

One magazine I didn't include, lamentably, in the Media Diet survey is Baseball America, which I discovered too late. That major supporter of the minor and lesser leagues, a tabloid, might also be worth delving into during the off season.

Swing, batter, swing!

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Podcast of Thousands

Writer supreme Glenn Gaslin is producing a podcast for E! starring the "hilarious and knowledgeable" Leslie Gornstein. Gornstein is funny and near all-knowing. 'Struth. Make with the clicky.

From the In Box: It's an Ad, Ad, Ad, Ad World XXXI

Your comments aren't working on Media Diet! Wasn't CIV made up of old Gorilla Biscuits players? I didn't realize that they sold their song for a car commercial. How do you feel about this? I know that I wouldn't like it if it was a GB song, because I kinda lost touch with the scene around the time they broke up. Heck, I don't even like that they use a Clash riff in a car commercial or a Stooges tune for luxury cruises. It kinda ruins the song for me, I end up associating it with the advertising imagery -- which is what it's supposed to do -- but I loved the music before that. Besides, isn't it weird for a song about drug addiction to be used to sell high-end goods and services? Let me know what you think. -- Jeff Buddle


Good memory! Civ, nee Anthony Civocelli, was in the Gorilla Biscuits, one of the first NYHC bands I got into when I started tape trading in the late '80s. Civ went onto his own project later on, recording several albums for Revelation Records. "Can't Wait One Minute More" comes from "Set Your Goals," Civ's first LP. I can't find the entire lyrics -- although they have been derided as repetitive -- so I can't confirm the drug addiction reference. The video got a lot of airplay on MTV, so surely lyrics live somewhere.

How do I feel about a hardcore band's song being used in a car commercial? I'd feel differently if it were the Biscuits and not Civ, as I see the two as being relatively far removed, and Civ as being rather mersh. That said, I think it's a net positive. One, it inspired me to dig back into my HC tape trading milk crates to find some Biscuits records. Two, it could introduce a whole new crowd to the music. And three, people who don't make a lot of money making a lot of money for a lot of years benefit from the royalty stream.

What's the down side? They didn't make the song for the advert, so the creative motivation can't be second guessed as strongly as it might be otherwise.

Saturday, September 24, 2005

It's an Ad, Ad, Ad, Ad World XXXI

A recent Nissan television ad features the Civ song "Can't Wait One Minute More." If any Media Dieticians have that song in MP3, please email it to me. I need it. And someone making car adverts has a punk-rock past!

Music to My Ears LXXI

With the cool crispness of fall hanging cleanly in the air and the approach of Halloween, it's time to gather appropriately seasonal -- and spooky -- music to match the mood of slowing decay that accompanies autumn and heralds the sleep of winter. One musical genre that might easily get overlooked is that of Christian rock. But it shouldn't be, because its spiritual foundation rests firmly on the ultimate undead.

Enter the Deadlines, a one-time Oregon-based quintet that released "The Death & Life of..." on Tooth & Nail Records in 2000. Largely inspired by the horror punk of Glenn Danzig's bands the Misfits and Samhain, the garage rockers sport a sound less cartoony than Lookout Records' Groovie Ghoulies and a wonderfully atmospheric Farfisa organ played by a fellow called the Creature.

The music is pretty straightforward and in the vein of Scared of Chaka, but the lyrics are an interesting study of horror punk cliche and occasional religious allusions. The eighth song on "The Death & Life of...," "Vegecide," is the first song that really breaks out. And oddly, the goofy rant against veganism -- "I'm having a vegan nightmare. The world is turning green." (The Misfits' "Green Hell," perhaps?) -- offsets the concern with killing animals for food with the phrase, "Don't you know that Jesus died for you." The other Christian references are almost as awkward. "Zombies, zombies coming for you. Pray to God they don't kill you, too." Without reading the lyrics, a listener could easily miss the Christian undercurrents.

I suppose that's the point of Christian rock. Copy the basics of a genre or subgenre and incorporate just enough allusions that the case can be made by people who limit their record purchases to "inspirational music" that you fit the Christian bill. Not surprisingly, the Deadlines' 2001 followup, "Fashion over Function" shed their horrorpunk beginnings and aped the slightly more palatable glam rock. Just as the dead can rise -- and Christ can live -- again, Christian punk bands can shed their skins and adopt a new mantle to appeal to the masses. I hope their faith is more steadfast.

Friday, September 23, 2005

Products I Love XVI

I'm spending a lot more time at my laptop lately, and even though I wear glasses -- I wore contacts until I began writing full time -- my eyes have been getting dry. Solution du jour: Innozen's Optizen lubricant eye drops. Fingers crossed. First use: some burn and blur, though short term, and we'll see if it solves my "problem." I see eye drops as aspirin: largely unnecessary and palliative.

The Movie I Watched Last Night XCII

I just started a Yahoo group to support a New York-based movie-watching "club." I watch plenty of movies via Netflix, but I haven't gone to a theater for a new release in, gosh, I don't know how long. If you're in the area and want to be involved, please sign up and get involved. You like action movies; I like romantic comedies.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Shelf-Publishing IV

I almost forgot to tell you. I helped contribute to a new book that just came out, The Big Moo: Stop Trying to Be Perfect and Start Being Remarkable. Edited by Seth Godin, the book puts me in some pretty amazing company: Mark Cuban, Malcolm Gladwell, Guy Kawasaki, Tom Kelley, Tom Peters, Randall Rothenberg... and me! You can read it all in a row, you can dive in here and there, you can put it down and pick it up again months later -- it's a nifty little package chock full of ideas and insights, and all proceeds go to charity. Check it out!

Monday, September 19, 2005

Music to My Ears LXX

Song of the day: "String Theory" by Mina K. Reminds me of how I felt listening to K records in the late '80s.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Trylons, Assemble! II

Not only are the Trylons part of the Chrysler building, it's the name of an endangered movie theater in Queens:

Never Forget Elephants

Event-O-Dex XVIII

Thursday, Sept. 15: New York Geek Dinner at the Grand Central Two Boots

Recipe for Satisfaction

I have two new favorite foods. One is the simple steak sandwich. You cook up a thinly sliced piece of steak and put it on buttered Italian bread. Amazing. The second is the humble crumpet. Better than English muffins -- less doughy -- they're perfect for toasting and marmalade. I've never had a crumpet before today. High time!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Room for Desertion

With tomorrow being the fourth anniversary of 911, I'm conflicted between remembering how I felt that day -- when I didn't yet live in New York -- and how I feel about the disaster in New Orleans. So tonight I read Slvoj Zizek's essay "Welcome to the Desert of the Real."

In 1993, Zizek was a visiting professor at Tulane University in New Orleans, but I can't find any writings by him about the city. Does anyone know if he's commented on the tragedy -- perhaps drawing parallels to 911?

Monday, September 05, 2005

Curricula and Community

Blogger's randomizer led me to an intriguing blog that's an excellent example of how grassroots Web technologies can be used in education. Bill Clemente is teaching an online course on nonwestern literature at Peru State College. He incorporates online discussion, as well as audio and video via Audioblog. It's equally personal, professorial, and productive. Makes me want to ride along!

Band Name of the Day II

Band name ideas gleaned from W.H.D. Rouse's translation of The Odyssey:

  • The Fuddledom
  • Shilly Shally
  • The Chitterlings
  • The Marry Me Quicks
  • Bibble Babble
  • The Shirk Battles
  • The Nip Screws
  • The Snatcher Birds
  • The Many Troubles
  • Sunday, September 04, 2005

    The Movie I Watched Last Night XCI

    Courtesy of Netflix, my DVD rental history:

    Shipped Returned Title
    08/23/05 09/01/05 Smothered (2002)
    08/23/05 09/01/05 The Ring (2002)
    08/22/05 08/25/05 Sweet Smell of Success (1957)
    08/18/05 08/23/05 Run Ronnie Run (2002)
    08/16/05 08/23/05 Lady in a Cage (1964)
    07/13/05 08/22/05 Buckminster Fuller: The Lost Interviews: Disc 1 (2005)
    07/15/05 08/18/05 Ken Burns' America: Brooklyn Bridge (1981)
    07/25/05 08/16/05 Northfork (2003)
    07/20/05 07/25/05 Sleepy Hollow (1999)
    07/15/05 07/20/05 Bubba Ho-Tep (2003)
    07/12/05 07/15/05 My Best Girl (1927)
    07/11/05 07/14/05 Shaun of the Dead (2004)
    06/27/05 07/13/05 Dogtown and Z-Boys (2002)
    06/28/05 07/12/05 I Heart Huckabees (2004)
    06/17/05 07/11/05 Stage Door (1937)
    06/23/05 06/28/05 The Incredibles (2004)
    05/27/05 06/27/05 The Man Who Came to Dinner (2000)
    06/07/05 06/23/05 June Moon (2002)
    06/07/05 06/16/05 Big Fish (2003)
    05/23/05 06/07/05 Minority Report (2002)
    05/31/05 06/07/05 Hellboy (2004)
    05/23/05 05/31/05 Van Helsing (2004)
    05/23/05 05/27/05 The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)
    05/17/05 05/23/05 Gangs of New York: Disc 2 (2002)
    05/17/05 05/23/05 Gangs of New York (2002)
    05/03/05 05/23/05 Modern Times (1936)
    04/26/05 05/23/05 The Great Lover (1949)
    05/03/05 05/16/05 Jack Kerouac: What Happened to Kerouac? (1986)
    04/25/05 05/03/05 American Splendor (2003)
    04/26/05 05/03/05 I, Robot (2004)
    04/20/05 04/26/05 Zorro Rides Again (1937)
    04/22/05 04/26/05 Annie Hall (1977)
    04/20/05 04/25/05 Re-Animator (1985)
    04/08/05 04/22/05 Gil Scott-Heron: Black Wax/Is That Jazz? (1982)
    04/12/05 04/20/05 The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
    04/11/05 04/20/05 William S. Burroughs: Commissioner of Sewers (1986)
    04/08/05 04/12/05 Run Lola Run (1998)
    04/06/05 04/11/05 Secretary (2002)
    04/05/05 04/08/05 Jack Kerouac: King of the Beats (2001)
    04/05/05 04/08/05 Revolution OS (2002)
    03/23/05 04/06/05 Spirited Away (2002)
    03/22/05 04/05/05 Alphaville (1965)
    03/25/05 04/05/05 Donnie Darko (2001)
    03/22/05 03/25/05 Bring It On (2000)
    02/23/05 03/22/05 Lost in America (1985)
    02/17/05 03/22/05 Gilda (1946)
    01/11/05 03/22/05 Catch 22 (1970)
    02/08/05 02/23/05 Newsies (1992)
    02/14/05 02/17/05 Garden State (2004)
    02/08/05 02/14/05 Sheena (1984)
    01/25/05 02/08/05 Sid & Nancy (1986)
    01/11/05 02/08/05 Repo Man (1984)
    11/26/04 01/11/05 Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)
    12/07/04 01/10/05 Tape (2001)
    11/24/04 01/05/05 Swimming with Sharks (1994)
    11/24/04 12/07/04 Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)
    11/12/04 11/24/04 Head: The Monkees (1968)
    11/08/04 11/24/04 The Delta Force (1986)
    10/19/04 11/24/04 An American Werewolf in London (1981)
    11/08/04 11/12/04 Airplane! (1980)
    10/26/04 11/08/04 The Big Kahuna (2000)
    11/02/04 11/08/04 The Groove Tube (1974)
    10/26/04 11/02/04 Stargate SG-1: Season 1: Vol. 1 (1997)
    08/11/04 10/26/04 Storytelling (2001)
    08/18/04 10/26/04 Wall Street (1987)
    09/08/04 10/19/04 Star Trek: The Original Series: Vol. 1: Episodes 2 & 3: Where No Man Has Gone Before / The Corbomite Maneuver (1966)
    08/09/04 09/08/04 Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo (1999)
    07/09/04 08/18/04 Lost in La Mancha (2002)
    07/13/04 08/11/04 There's No Business Like Show Business (1954)
    07/13/04 08/09/04 Seven Year Itch (1955)
    07/07/04 07/13/04 The Phandom Menace (2003)
    07/08/04 07/13/04 A Galaxy Far Far Away (2001)
    05/25/04 07/09/04 Cinemania (2002)
    01/22/04 07/08/04 Now, Voyager (1942)
    02/25/04 07/07/04 Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
    03/30/04 05/25/04 New York: Episode 1: The Country and the City (1999)
    02/06/04 03/30/04 A Place in the Sun (1951)
    01/22/04 02/25/04 Notorious (1946)
    01/21/04 02/06/04 What Lies Beneath (2000)
    12/16/03 01/22/04 Triumph of the Will (1934)
    11/19/03 01/22/04 Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (2000)
    01/05/04 01/21/04 Rock Star (2001)
    12/24/03 01/06/04 Rock Star (2001)
    11/18/03 12/24/03 Chinatown (1974)
    11/26/03 12/16/03 Jesus' Son (2000)
    11/12/03 11/26/03 It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World (1963)
    10/28/03 11/19/03 American Graffiti: Collector's Edition (1973)
    10/23/03 11/18/03 The Devil Commands (1941)
    10/24/03 11/12/03 The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
    10/21/03 10/28/03 The Fall of the House of Usher (1928)
    07/25/03 10/24/03 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
    08/29/03 10/23/03 Cat People (1982)
    09/03/03 10/21/03 How to Make a Monster (2001)
    08/28/03 09/03/03 The Fog (1980)
    08/12/03 08/29/03 Taxi Driver (1976)
    06/24/03 08/28/03 Requiem for a Dream (2000)
    05/29/03 08/12/03 Hair (1979)
    06/24/03 07/25/03 Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998)
    06/18/03 06/24/03 A Night at the Roxbury (1998)
    06/02/03 06/24/03 Jesus Christ Superstar (1973)
    05/27/03 06/17/03 Amelie (2001)
    05/13/03 06/02/03 Run Lola Run (1998)
    04/15/03 05/29/03 e-Dreams (2002)
    04/29/03 05/27/03 Super Troopers (2002)
    04/08/03 05/13/03 The Straight Story (1999)
    04/22/03 04/29/03 Where the Buffalo Roam (1980)
    04/17/03 04/22/03 Frogs (1972)
    04/01/03 04/16/03 Startup.com (2001)
    03/18/03 04/15/03 Strange Days (1995)
    02/21/03 04/08/03 MASH (1970)
    01/22/03 04/01/03 Dr. Strangelove (1964)
    01/23/03 03/18/03 Sneakers (1992)
    01/27/03 02/21/03 Masters of the Universe (1987)
    01/27/03 02/20/03 Freejack (1991)
    01/22/03 01/27/03 The Lawnmower Man (1992)
    01/22/03 01/27/03 Johnny Mnemonic (1995)
    01/16/03 01/22/03 The Net (1995)
    01/17/03 01/22/03 Hackers (1995)
    11/26/02 01/22/03 The Insider (1999)
    01/09/03 01/17/03 Existenz (1999)
    01/10/03 01/16/03 Total Recall (1990)
    12/10/02 01/10/03 Shrek (Full-screen) (2001)
    12/04/02 01/09/03 Airplane II: The Sequel (1982)
    12/04/02 12/10/02 Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine (1965)
    11/22/02 12/04/02 The Exorcist: Restored Version (1973)
    11/26/02 12/04/02 Josie and the Pussycats (2001)
    09/20/02 11/26/02 Altered States (1980)
    08/06/02 11/26/02 Doctor Zhivago (1965)
    11/19/02 11/22/02 The Wedding Singer (1998)
    09/20/02 11/19/02 Three Kings (1999)
    09/06/02 09/20/02 The Lord of the Rings (1978)
    09/12/02 09/20/02 Osmosis Jones (2001)
    08/08/02 09/12/02 Snatch (2000)
    08/20/02 09/06/02 Heavy Metal (1981)
    07/16/02 08/20/02 Nine to Five (1980)
    07/17/02 08/08/02 Pee-Wee's Big Adventure (1985)
    07/03/02 08/06/02 The Avengers '63: Vol. 1 (1963)
    07/03/02 07/17/02 Twin Peaks: Season 1: Disc 3 (1990)
    06/25/02 07/16/02 Twin Peaks: Season 1: Disc 2 (1990)
    06/24/02 07/03/02 Weird Science (1985)
    06/26/02 07/03/02 How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)
    06/18/02 06/26/02 The Prisoner: Disc 1 (1967)
    06/05/02 06/25/02 Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)
    06/18/02 06/24/02 American Pie (1999)
    06/11/02 06/18/02 Twin Peaks: Season 1: Disc 1 (1990)
    06/05/02 06/18/02 Tootsie (1982)
    05/30/02 06/11/02 Monty Python's Flying Circus: Vol. 2 (1969)
    05/18/02 06/05/02 The Simpsons: Season 1: Disc 3 (1989)
    05/06/02 06/05/02 East Is East (1999)
    04/08/02 05/30/02 Monty Python's Flying Circus: Vol. 1 (1969)
    05/01/02 05/17/02 Fight Club (1999)
    04/04/02 05/06/02 Man on the Moon (2000)
    03/26/02 05/01/02 The Simpsons: Season 1: Disc 2 (1989)
    03/25/02 04/08/02 The Mummy (1932)
    02/21/02 04/04/02 Buena Vista Social Club (1999)
    03/12/02 03/25/02 V: The Original Miniseries (1983)
    03/07/02 03/25/02 American Beauty (1999)
    02/20/02 03/12/02 Slaughterhouse Five (1972)
    02/26/02 03/07/02 The Twilight Zone: Vol. 1 (1962)
    02/07/02 02/26/02 Magnolia (1999)
    02/13/02 02/20/02 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
    02/08/02 02/19/02 The Simpsons: Season 1: Disc 1 (1989)
    01/24/02 02/13/02 Memento (2000)
    01/25/02 02/08/02 Outland (1981)
    01/07/02 02/07/02 The Andromeda Strain (1971)
    01/08/02 01/25/02 Rock 'n' Roll High School (1979)
    01/08/02 01/24/02 Best in Show (2000)

    Auction Hero

    Gosh, I want this. Almost a full run of Spy magazine via Ebay.

    Saturday, September 03, 2005

    Roadrunner, Roadrunner

    Finally, I've caved. This morning I trained into Manhattan to the 23rd Street Time Warner Cable office to get a self-install kit and a cable modem for RoadRunner high-speed Internet access. I was impressed how streamlined the customer service process was: customer number at the door, a way efficient woman, and I soon left with a cable modem and self-install kit.

    The kit consisted of a cable splitter, basically. Had I gotten my own cable modem, could I have just gotten a splitter and gone to town? When I got my laptop several years ago, I also got an Airport, which has been mothballed until this afternoon. It's nice having wireless access at home -- right now I'm at the kitchen counter -- and I hope I'm also helping the neighborhood.

    Random aside: While managing my Netflix queue, I just maxed it out. Seems the maximum number of movies you can queue is 483. "If you wish to add this movie to your Queue, you must first remove some movies," the service said when I tried to add another. Why 483?

    Friday, September 02, 2005

    Music to My Ears LXIX

    Last night, I created a new iMix: New Orleans Is Sinking. Inspired by a discussion on the Well, it's a collection of music about New Orleans, hurricanes, and floods. I know this is of questionable taste, but while Rome burned, and all that...

    Name Game

    Early this morning, I received an email from someone asking if I was in fact Roe Heath, who went to Seaholm High School in Birmingham, Michigan. For the record, I am not. But if any Media Dieticians know this Roe Heath, please email me, and I'll pass it on to the person who's on the hunt.