Thursday, September 30, 2004

Fleeing Yoshimi.

Wayne Coyne:

"So, I exclaimed "Look outside - I know that you'll recognize it's summertime!!" - not to be some cosmic hippie solution - there is no answer - just a change... but better to express sorrow and experience sadness than to let inner emotions inflate to the point of despair - despair only leads to more death. For it's bad enough that something wonderful in your life has left you - but to fall into despair - despair does not allow you to even enjoy what is still living..."

This album, and these paintings in particular, make seasonally depressed me very, very happy. Thanks, Wayne!Posted by Hello
Don't Blame Us!

Disclaimer accompanying new beta release of our terrific spam-blocker, Spamnix:

"Using pre-release software is an inherently 'adventurous' activity. You should be a skilled and confident computer user, be capable of answering most of your own questions by extrapolating from the documentation or just by figuring it out yourself, and not be likely to get upset if something goes wrong. Otherwise---you are still a good person and deserve to use the software when it is ready."


Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun: ovidist! Posted by Hello

Chief Xcel and Gift of Gab, rockin' the house

"First In Flight"
(feat. Gil Scott-Heron)

First in flight [repeated 4X]

[Gil Scott-Heron:]
(Cause all we got is rhythm and timin'
We go beyond the edge of the sky)

[Gift of Gab]
FREE! Like a bird out in the wind in the night
Like a 747 to LA that's in flight
FREE! Like a garden flourishing in the wind
Like a student bout to do it when he's graduatin
FREE! From any of the energy perception
Can never be defined create the definition within
FREE! Just lovin life itself and never pretend to be
Anything other than the man I was meant to be
Travel through time and get a glimpse of the centuries
To come a better day is promised remember
FREE! Like my nephew in a few months about to be out the penitentiary
Meditation [repeated 9X]


[Gift of Gab]
UH! I never hesitate about a reluctant mind
Just put the peddle to the metal see what ya find
You back there slouchin over won't you pick up your spine?
Let's make it really really happen live up this time
Cause you can choose to say "Good morning God" or "Good God, morning"
With black clouds storming
I walk without umbrellas into these woods
Don't need em cause the mighty trees will shelter me good
I'm eating berries from the bushes of the heavenly good
From the ?stakes/steaks? the power came to us whenever we stood
Reverberatin out we're reachin each and every hood
Whenver we could the spiritual anatomy fool
But never take the credit for it B cause that'd be rude
It's just the way in life we searchin for that had to be new
You gotta work it though cause everyday ain't Saturday fool
Evolve into a better life and be happy with you and me


[Gil Scott-Heron]
The first to fly
The first to strive
The first to fight to stay alive
The first to win
The first to strike
The first to live
The first in flight

[Gift of Gab]
RISE! Like the sun up at the crack of the dawn
Like a wakin child in the morning stretchin and yawnin
RISE! Like an infant being held in the light
Like the smoke from an incense when it's ignited
RISE! If you're sleepin won't you open your eyes again
The greatest high be that natural high within
No need to force the progression just ride the wind
You'll know the answer to the where and why and when
If you keep workin for your search you will find the end
Though at the end you find it only begins again
See at the end you'll see it only begins again
And everything you learn you're only rememberin
Cause you're

[Chorus (repeat 4X)]

[Gift of Gab: repeat 2X]
It's me
Let your mind and your soul be free
Work to shine meet your goal believe
Spread that kind of L-O-V-E
Take some time off the lonely

[Gil Scott-Heron: repeat to end]
Cause all we got is rhythm and timin'
We go beyond the edge of the sky Posted by Hello
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
Unique experiment may restore brain function in patients suffering from stroke, Alzheimer’s & etc.

"The finding comes after two years of research, using $7.50 worth of circuit parts from a Radio Shack store and dozens of spiny lobsters from La Jolla Cove purchased from a local fisherman."

Bookshop Memories -- George Orwell's customers, apparently mine as well:

"Many of the people who came to us were of the kind who would be a nuisance anywhere but have special opportunities in a bookshop. For example, the dear old lady who ‘wants a book for an invalid’ (a very common demand, that), and the other dear old lady who read such a nice book in 1897 and wonders whether you can find her a copy. Unfortunately she doesn’t remember the title or the author’s name or what the book was about, but she does remember that it had a red cover. But apart from these there are two well-known types of pest by whom every second-hand bookshop is haunted. One is the decayed person smelling of old breadcrusts who comes every day, sometimes several times a day, and tries to sell you worthless books. The other is the person who orders large quantities of books for which he has not the smallest intention of paying. In our shop we sold nothing on credit, but we would put books aside, or order them if necessary, for people who arranged to fetch them away later. Scarcely half the people who ordered books from us ever came back. It used to puzzle me at first. What made them do it? They would come in and demand some rare and expensive book, would make us promise over and over again to keep it for them, and then would vanish never to return. But many of them, of course, were unmistakable paranoiacs. They used to talk in a grandiose manner about themselves and tell the most ingenious stories to explain how they had happened to come out of doors without any money—stories which, in many cases, I am sure they themselves believed. In a town like London there are always plenty of not quite certifiable lunatics walking the streets, and they tend to gravitate towards bookshops, because a bookshop is one of the few places where you can hang about for a long time without spending any money. In the end one gets to know these people almost at a glance. For all their big talk there is something moth-eaten and aimless about them. Very often, when we were dealing with an obvious paranoiac, we would put aside the books he asked for and then put them back on the shelves the moment he had gone. None of them, I noticed, ever attempted to take books away without paying for them; merely to order them was enough—it gave them, I suppose, the illusion that they were spending real money."

Monday, September 27, 2004

"PAUL: I'm not sure I get it, though. I mean, how did you ever come up with the idea to do this...this project?

AUGGIE: I don't know, it just came to me. It's my corner, after all. It's just one little part of the world, but things happen there, too, just like everywhere else. It's a record of my little spot.

PAUL: It's kind of overwhelming.

AUGGIE: You'll never get it if you don't slow down, my friend.

PAUL: What do you mean?

AUGGIE: I mean, you're going too fast. You're hardly even looking at the pictures.

PAUL: But they're all the same.

AUGGIE: They're all the same, but each one is different from every other one. You've got your bright mornings and your dark mornings. You've got your summer light and your autumn light. You've got your weekdays and your weekends. You've got your people in overcoats and galoshes, and you've got your people in shorts and t-shirts. Sometimes the same people, sometimes different ones. And sometimes the different ones become the same, and the same ones disappear. The earth revolves around the sun, and every day the light from the sun hits the earth at a different angle."

(Paterson Ewen, Northern Lights, 1973; Paul Auster, Smoke)


Sculptor Mowry Baden, longtime UVIC prof, with maquette. Baden's works can be loosely categorized as sculptural, architectural, or environmental "machines" built to decenter viewers' bodily subjectivity (a mouthful, I know). Baden's real contemporaries are people like Bruce Nauman, Michael Asher and Gordon Matta-Clark, though his art has never achieved the same degree of public profile as theirs, probably due to his relative seclusion in Victoria.

All this thanks to some kind soul unloading a long-OP Art Gallery of Greater Victoria catalog, Mowry Baden: Maquettes and Other Preparatory Works, 1967-1980. 48 pages of densely theoretical text by Baden and lots of photographs of site-specific objects, many now destroyed. An early Christmas gift!

I only ever met Baden once. Grant Arnold and I had been at the AGGV on VAG business and were killing time before the evening ferry. Up ahead, a bald, quick-moving man in an incredibly loud untucked Hawaiian shirt was loading building materials into an old rebuilt dairy truck that looked like it had been mated with an armored car. "Hey, that's Mowry," said Grant. "Come on, I'll introduce you."

While Mowry and Grant conducted a twenty minute high volume discussion in the middle of the street, I observed that the pattern on Baden's shirt consisted of small armored dinosaurs marching briskly to and fro. "Nice triceratops," I volunteered, once the principals ran out of breath.

Baden drew himself up. "That's not triceratops," he proudly informed me, "that's protoceratops." Posted by Hello

Fall fog this morning, scarcely above ground level at Main and Broadway, my breath smoking in the cool moist air.

No luck locating a cute tie-in image (possible alternatives: gloomy emo-band; hippie weather festival in California; inventive new image projection technology; rainwear; haunted houses), so here's an article on utility fog instead, a brief Monday morning excursion into Bruce Sterling country. Posted by Hello
Sunday, September 26, 2004

Neil Wedman, Still Raining, Still Dreaming, 2004. From the series Electric Ladyland, up at the Belkin Satellite on Hamilton Posted by Hello
Saturday, September 25, 2004
Jim Willer -- West Coast landscape painter, environmentalist, science fiction novelist and friend, now suffering from Alzheimer's disease. Jim's novel, Paramind (McClelland and Stewart, 1973), like Delany's Dhalgren and Gibson's "Fragments of a Hologram Rose," radically altered my sense of science fiction's stylistic possibilities.

"Hedley now...Merritt...the blue shaft of Lake Skaha!...With one white hovecraft like a water-doomed butterfly. The hills opposite are mimicking a glyptodon. Peachland. Clear, black silhouette against the silver bright sky. Kelowna, under that faint moon, and clouds playing 'pterydactyls'...ahead, the silver span of a bridge. Moth..."

Saturday afternoon etymology

"Do you have any books on carnivorous trees?"


"I might have mispronounced that."

Friday, September 24, 2004

L.E. Jones, Texas lawyer and early employee of Lyndon Johnson, quoted in Caro:

"'Lyndon was always in a position of command,' he says. 'I never felt equal. Ordinarily, I'm aggressive and beligerent. My nature is such that if I can't be an equal, I will not remain in a situation, and he was so demanding that -- well, you lose your individuality if you allow someone to be too demanding for too long.'"

Reading this on the ferry, I sat bolt-upright; it felt like some very sophisticated form of psychic radar was crawling around inside my head. Posted by Hello

Philip Guston, View, 1983 Posted by Hello
Thursday, September 23, 2004
Day off yesterday. Deep seasonal depression.

I took the express bus to Horseshoe Bay, bought what I thought was a ticket for the 1pm sailing to Nanaimo at 12:58pm, and ran the length of the elevated gangway to the empty departure lounge.

Next sailing, 3pm, said the schedule in the locked glass cabinet.

Out into Horseshoe Bay, rain falling steadily now. I went into Troll's for lunch, the local fish-and-chip fixture. There were very few people out on Horseshoe Bay's streets, and even fewer in the local stores, but Troll's was jammed with people my parents' age and older. I was the only person on my own, and the only person reading (Anthony Caro, The Path to Power, volume 1 of his Lyndon Johnson memoirs, which I'd bought earlier that morning along with a Nanaimo map in a downtown bookstore).

The young waitress tried to talk the American couple beside me out of going to Bowen Island.

"There's a garage where you can leave your car," she said. "And on a sunny day, yeah, sure, I'd say go. But today?" She gestured at the empty, rainswept street outside, at Howe Sound, which, beyond the ferry dock, simply vanished into grey mist. "There's nothing there," she said. "I mean, there's trails and things--" But the Americans were shaking their heads.

An hour in the departure lounge, Caro and the Times.

An hour and a half on the ferry. Grey ocean, light chop, low grey clouds hovering just above the water.

Into Departure Bay at twenty to five. Clouds gathering overhead, the day drawing down. Grey mist in the air, promising rain to come.

The half-hour walk into downtown Nanaimo, whose stores close promptly at five. Rain more insistant now.

Waiting for the city bus that never arrived.

Hiking back to Departure Bay in steady rain. Mushroom gardens at the side of the road!

Wednesday, September 22, 2004
Deep depression today. Nothing particular, just low fall light.

Rain spitting down from aluminum sky.

Off on a BC Ferry, with BC Ferry coffee and Harold Bloom's Map of Misreading.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Happy birthday, Stephen King!

Slogged through all 800 pages of this freshly released doorstop today, just to find out how the almost fractally complex story I started in my early teens finally ends.

The Dark Tower is the kind of book that the thirteen- or fourteen- year old who started reading it would have been proud to write. It will probably make little or no sense to anyone who hasn't read most or all of King's other books. I have. Some tried my patience more than others. It's hard to reconcile the fabulously lucid prose of On Writing or The Dead Zone (or, for that matter, the terrific stories in the recent collection Everything's Eventual) with groaning, plot-driven wrecks like Insomnia or Gerald's Game. The Dark Tower novels up the patience-trying quotient by juxtaposing huge deserts of slobbery exposition and backstory with individually striking sentences and paragraphs.

So, for every surreally comic paragraph like this:

"'I mean, my wife is in bad trouble somewhere up the line, for all I know she's being eaten alive by vampires or vampire bugs, and here I sit beside a country road with a guy whose most basic skill is shooting people, trying to work out how I'm going to start a fucking corporation!'"

you get a paragraph of plain clear writing:

"He climbed on without looking into any more of the rooms, without bothering to smell their aromas of the past. The stairwell narrowed until his shoulders nearly touched its curved stone sides. No songs now, unless the wind was a song, for he heard it soughing."

I like that second sentence a lot; it reminds me of the simplicity of a Shaker box. The sibillance of the repeated s-sounds, and the interplay of the hard c-sounds -- touched, curved -- forming a kind of counterpoint, or backbeat.

I'm glad I got to read these books, as uneven and overwritten as they mostly are. I don't know if I'll ever reread them, but I'm glad I made it all the way through once. And the last book's final pages really are cruel, and appropriate.
Posted by Hello

Monday, September 20, 2004

to everyone who voted Pulpfiction "Best Used Bookstore" in this year's Georgia Straight readers' poll. Results out on Thursday!

Emily Dickinson, for an afternoon of low fall light and masses of slowly rising clouds along the North Shore peaks:

There's a certain slant of light,
On winter afternoons
That oppresses, like the weight
Of cathedral tunes.

Heavenly hurt it gives us;
We can find no scar,
But internal difference
Where the meanings, are.

None may teach it anything,
'T is the seal, despair,
An imperial affliction
Sent us of the air.

When it comes, the landscape listens,
Shadows hold their breath;
When it goes, 'tis like the distance
On the look of death.

Saturday, September 18, 2004
ART (Aesthetically Rejected Thing): ScoutPal

Abe returned this afternoon from the Seattle public library sale with a carload of general stock and a loud and articulate diatribe about the ScoutPal, an "aid" to book scouting in much the same way that the Segway is an "aid" to walking. In both cases, the overbearing use of technology solves a problem that didn't exist in the first place.

ScoutPal, which I've seen on-line but never in the field, is a proprietory service that you log into on your Web-enabled cell phone, which tells you the selling price of used books on Amazon. So, if you're a dumb book scout, who doesn't know your trade, or just terminally lazy, you can stand at the library sale or the thrift store, punching ISBNs into your phone's keypad till your fingers cramp up.

now has a -- wait for it -- barcode scanning attachment that plugs into the end of your cellphone. Thus the goofy spectacle Abe described to me, of husband and wife teams grazing shelves of books like cattle, one partner turning books barcode-side up while the other partner zaps the book with their Scoutpal, like the checker-and-bagboy teams at the Super Valu down the street.

Here, as elsewhere in culture, technology and money enable a superficial amount of knowledge to be nominally "democratized," at the cost of the would-be scout's close examination of each book.

You learn a lot from handling individual volumes. When I worked at Book and Comic Emporium in the early 90s, I was always amazed by the way that Gavin, my friend and the store's manager, could accurately price books by picking them up and riffling through them. It was as if he was absorbing the book's specifics through his fingertips. I always thought this was an act put on to show me up as the amateur bookman I so obviously was, but lately, having caught myself doing the same thing unconsciously, usually in front of friends' bookshelves, I can only conclude that analysis-and-pricing by touch is a symptom of having spent serious time on the job, just as the practitioner of any trade, whether carpenter, plumber, mason or gardener, will eventually develop little job-related physical quirks.

The speed a professional bookman develops after years of handling books for eight to ten hours a day drives Internet and ebay sellers nuts. Case in point: the Reno public library sale in May. Confronted with several tables of science fiction pocket books, I started in, making piles. An Internet seller was studying me, his face getting redder and redder as he watched. Once I'd built a comfortable lead, I slowed down and watched how he went about choosing books. He'd pick a volume up and squint at it, turn it over and squint at the barcode, then maybe open it up and glance at the publication data. Then he'd pause for a secondwhile he thought it over, then move on to the next book. . . .In the meantime, I had cleared the science fiction section and was loading up my shopping cart. My competitor's face was beet-red; he looked like he was deciding to swing on me. He suspected a trick, or magic, or a technological shortcut, like an invisible ScoutPal.

No such thing exists, or ever will. In bookselling, as in most trades, hard work counts. Work out for fifteen minutes a day, and, in a year, you'll have muscles. Handle books ten hours a day for five years straight, and your very own invisible ScoutPal will appear -- in your fingertips, where it belongs.

Friday, September 17, 2004
My publishers -- some of them, at least. World HQ, way high above the I-5 up the Lake City Way NE exit, just north of downtown Seattle, really is as described. The first time I visited I thought I was walking into a crack den, though the cardboard Krazy Kat die-cut stand-up in the window was vaguely reassuring.

Thursday, September 16, 2004

PBO = paperback original, no hardcover issue

Anchor Books PBOs -- Edward Gorey typography & illustrations

About 200 different titles extant, 25% or so with Gorey line drawings on their covers.

(To Langley yesterday, a nondescript Vancouver suburb, in John's AMC Concord, to trade several boxes of surplus paperbacks. Found lots of stuff for the store, and Anchor A165, Walter Jackson Bate's Prefaces to Criticism, for me, which would be interesting regardless of what format it was published in, but seems far more stylish with that distinctive Gorey handlettering on its cover)



Sign on the heavily-alarmed fire exit door beside the men's room, ground floor, Chapters bookstore, Robson & Howe, downtown Vancouver.

I know this warning is meant to stop junkies wandering in in the evening, but the once-upon-a-time horror writer in me promptly imagined...something else.

Barista blocks the door open, levers a big cellophane bag of coffee grounds and empty paper cups through it, and thunks the bag down on the loading dock. Fog eddies in off the lane. The barista picks the bag back up, goes to heave it off the end of the dock into the trash compactor, and feels his foot snag on something. Glances down. A grey hand has come up over the lip of the dock and caught him by the ankle. Dull white bone protrudes through skin the color of boiled liver.

Shuffling footsteps draw near on all sides... Posted by Hello
Monday, September 13, 2004
Soul Sides -- MP3 blog full of jazz and tasty funk. Not quite sure how I first found this -- Waxpoetics, maybe? -- but regardless, a daily favorite.

Full on fall storm this morning, first of the season, great grey gusts of rain and the lights occasionally flickering here at Main and Broadway.

Weekend residue stacked high in the aisles, 800-odd books that weren't filed away immediately, plus lots of stuff that was browsed and then abandoned.

The lights flickering again.

Fantails of water from the traffic outside.

Sunday, September 12, 2004

High repeat in the shop all weekend. Frequently derided by the emo-indie rock kid crowd as quintessential "bookstore jazz," but actually one of the most sublime jazz piano albums ever recorded. Great Oliver Nelson and Herbie Hancock covers, and a swinging rhythm section too.Posted by Hello
Short essay for the exhibition of Mina Totino watercolor drawings I organized for 69 Pender. Impressive opening-night turnout, especially so considering the ark-building weather that prevailed outside all evening.

Mina refers to this text as "a bunch of little thought bubbles," which seems dead-on to me.

Seven Thoughts About Reading Marx

by Christopher Brayshaw

  1. I first saw the Reading Marx drawings near the end of a long studio visit, the table between us cluttered with cigarette butts and empty cups of honeyed tea. The drawings’ vast expanses of unmarked white rag paper and pale grey watercolor washes lacked the Gustonesque muscularity of the huge weather events stacked elsewhere in the studio, the Kilroy faces, and piles of books and clouds. Like the burning cars and Antonini explosions before them these big oil paintings foreground their status as images derived from photographic or filmic sources; they put their posterity to their sources into quotes. The Marx drawings, like the Rϋgen chalk canvases and the cloud studies shown at the Robson Street Gallery, drop the quotes. Almost all of Mina Totino’s images have a source in some other medium – I think this is an essential part of her practice, the recognition that the same image can occupy many different positions – high culture, low culture, utilitarian – like those quantum events that simultaneously exist in more than one state, particle and wave. In the Marx drawings, this recognition is unneccessary to the work the images perform. You don’t apprehend their sources as explicitly as you do, with, say, the Antonini explosions, or Keanu Reeves’ huge flapping coat.
  1. The conceptual and appropriative art practices of the late 60s, 70s, and early 1980s put traditional guarantors of aesthetic quality like color, line, and composition into question. Only a rube would use the tonal qualities of, say, a Sherrie Levine Weston appropriation as a guarantee of its aesthetic worth or “quality.” The form of the work – its explicit dependence on an external source – signals its resistance to conventional modes of aesthetic classification and analysis. Many artists hoped this resistance might overload or short-circuit older representational forms all together, exposing them as vestigal to contemporary culture. This hope remains unfulfilled, and its legacy is twofold. On one hand, representational works that engage the older forms through techniques derived from the artists’ close study of conceptual and post-conceptual art (for example, Jenny Holzer’s glosses on Constructivist photomontage, or those aspects of lighting and staging that indicate James Coleman’s close study of Baroque portraiture). On the other hand, the dreary spectacle of post-, neo- & etc. conceptualism, still obstinately tilling fields thoroughly ploughed in the late 1960s.
  1. The Marx drawings would be unthinkable without conceptual art’s example. Every choice that determined the project’s final form – its seriality; Mina’s use of two cameras, one loaded with slide film, the other an instant Polaroid, designed to capture two very different impressions of each sitter’s face -- are integral to it, if not foregrounded there. But the Marx project is not, strictly speaking, conceptualism or some post- or neo- variant thereof, for Mina’s final emphasis is on the particularity of her subjects, and not the process that makes the pictures.
  1. Capital, the Marx text from which the series takes its title, never appears in the drawings. I remember Mina’s own copy, an oversize Penguin, well-thumbed, with little pieces of yellow Post-It stuck in the margins, which the used bookseller in me immediately started pulling out and then guiltily replacing.
  1. The drawings don’t depend on a particular text or passage per se, but on the subjects’ engagement with a Marx passage of their own choosing. Reading and thinking don’t necessarily encourage grand gestures. The subjects’ downcast eyes and occasionally furrowed brows are symptoms of complex internal processes that mostly escape representation.
  1. The drawings’ modesty in the face of the impossibility of representing just what is occurring in twenty-one different mental hemispheres is one of the project’s greatest strengths.
  1. Watercolor drawing encourages abbreviation of gesture. The economy of means that initially renders some sitters almost spectral (eg., the early portrait of Michael Turner) evolves, over time, into a flickering language of its own, whose little dashes and curlicues are like the half-finished sentences old friends exchange in conversation. Friendship only infrequently appears in sophisticated art, and I admire Mina’s non-ironized representation of it here.

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Falling man, New York City, 11 September 2001. Photograph by Richard Drew Posted by Hello
Thursday, September 09, 2004

Air Raid Sirens of Los Angeles County, a Caldwell/Bourke-White style text-and-image essay by Garret Izumi, not so far removed from Rudy Vanderlans' Cucamonga or SGB's Surrey, B.C. (thx gmtPlus9!)Posted by Hello

Michael Schultz, industrial photographer. Echoes of Stan Douglas, Edward Burtynsky, and the Bechers, sometimes all in the same images. Lots of landscapes on the site, too, but none of them click as quickly or resonantly as Schultz's fine-eyed studies of industrial decrepitude. Check out color galleries 3 and 4, esp. the abandoned train. (thx Pete!)Posted by Hello
When things go wrong
I sing along
It is the nature
Of the business...

Magnetic Fields, No One Will Ever Love You Honestly

just announced, Vogue Theatre, Novemberish!

Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Albert Hoffman, psychedelic "therapy," endearingly lo-fi Flash graphics, jungle spirits disguised as psychoactive fungi, repetitive thudding trance music, & etc...

(thx dru!)

Tuesday, September 07, 2004
6am walk from the shop down to the VanCity night teller. Cold air on my face, the North Shore skyline slowly fading up into view. Half-moon and a few cold stars.

Monday, September 06, 2004
30 Second Freeze-Dried Value Investor's Toolkit

SEDAR -- Canadian annual & quarterly reports and press releases at your fingertips

EDGAR -- the US Security & Exchange Commission's version of SEDAR

Not Berkshire Hathaway

Omaha-based, Graham-influenced value orientation, clear communication with shareholders, majority of principals' monies invested with the firm, & etc...

Wallace R. Weitz Investment Management
's shareholder letters and top 10 holdings: good detailed Sunday night reading.

Friday, September 03, 2004 -- lots of ghosts in these pictures

Thursday, September 02, 2004
Reading Marx

Exhibition of new watercolor drawings by Mina Totino, organized by yours truly. Gallery 69, 69 East Pender, in Chinatown. Opening Friday September 10th, 2004, 8pm. My first curatorial project in 4 years. Y'all come!

Started Giorgio Agamben's Man Without Content tonight.

"What happens to Frenhofer? So long as no other eye contemplated his masterpiece, he did not doubt his success for one moment; but one look at the canvas through the eyes of his two spectators is enough for him to appropriate Porbus's and Poussin's opinion: 'Nothing! Nothing! And I worked on this for ten years.' Frenhofer becomes double. He moves from the point of view of the artist to that of the spectator, from the interested promesse de bonheur to disinterested aesthetics. In this transition, the integrity of his work dissolves. For it is not only Frenhofer that becomes double, but his work as well: just as in some combinations of geometric figures, which, if observed for a long time, acquire a different arrangement, from which one cannot return to the previous one except by closing one's eyes, so his work alternately presents two sides that cannot be put back together into a unity. The side that faces the artist is the living reality in which he reads his promise of happiness; but the other side, which faces the spectator, is an assemblage of lifeless elements that can only mirror itself in the aesthetic judgement's reflection of it."

Every Bus Stop in Surrey, BC

The Georgia Straight's Robin Laurence reviews SGB's magnum opus:

"It's not the banal particulars of the actual bus stops that matter here, but the character of the area in which each is located. Surrey's bus stops range from multilane loops at megamalls to modest markers nearly enveloped in vegetation on narrow country roads. The photos reveal lumberyards and metal fabricators, car dealerships and greenhouses, gas stations and strip malls, bingo halls and churches, office buildings and trailer courts, high schools and flea markets, fast-food restaurants and grassy meadows with mountain vistas. They reveal, too, old houses lushly surrounded by lawns, trees, and shrubs; new houses sitting in fields of dirt; and excavations for newer houses still. There's the occasional pedestrian, bicyclist, or skateboarder, too. Very occasional."
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Nekobasu says, "Get well soon, Sylvia." Posted by Hello
Missing man may be violent

"WINNIPEG - Winnipeg police are asking for the public's help in locating a missing man who may behave violently without medication.

"Brayshaw is about five feet seven inches tall and weighs about 195 pounds. He recently shaved his head, although he has several days' growth of facial hair. He may be wearing a blue fishing hat.

"Police say anyone who sees Brayshaw should not approach him, as he can be violent when he is not taking his medication, which he does not have with him."

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