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Saturday, September 06, 2003
Collect The Whole Set
As usual, be sure to click everything. You know the drill by now. I would have posted this sooner, but...
Amazon Hacks No matter how much you think you know your way around Amazon, guess again. From 35-byte product URLs (great for ASCII email newsletters; hey there's an idea! I should write one) to... well, check out the middle button at the right, for instance. There is more in heaven and earth than is dreamed of in your philosophy, Horatio. Essential reading for every red-blooded blogger, even if your name's not Horatio.

Google Hacks An excellent reference to all Right Thinking People's favorite search engine, and thus a must-have for all have-nots. Co-author Tara Calishain wrote the first review of EGR in January 1997. "Reading this newsletter," she said, "is like riding down a steep hill on a Big Wheel with no brakes. Christopher Locke, Man Behind EGR, has a command of the language that makes reading a great ride." Well, this sucks, doesn't it? I'm reviewing my near-defunct* zine instead of her book. I must be a narcissist after all. (* not really dead; more like a resting parrot.)

Google Pocket Guide Ah, but you see, Tara gets two entries, so I'm saved once again from the dreaded NPD diagnosis. Anyway, this one is smaller than the big fat one above. It fits in your pocket, if you have a pocket, thus the Pocket Guide designation. Look, you know and I know that I'm just filling out this table and have nothing terribly meaningful to say about these books except that they're super useful for all sorts of seditious projects. Just click the fucking links, OK?

but here's the one I'm waiting for!

10:46 AM | link |

Thursday, September 04, 2003
HAL 9000

smart collaboration

(click quick! before the hosers change the page.)

2:25 AM | link |

mystic eyes
This clip from a recently arrived spam reminded me of my very first original online artwork. I know that's hard to believe, given the mastery of the medium its execution bespeaks, but yes, this was but an early stumbling attempt. The reason the spam reminds me of what I like to think of as my Microsoft Paintbrush Period is that I later used the eyes from a similar spam to bring the image to life. The mouse pointer was added later still and has an esoteric meaning, to describe which would require an in-depth explication of Kabbalistic iconography that is beyond the scope of what was originally intended as a relatively simple and straightforward blog post. But then, ah, you know what happens by now. They never are. Simple and straightforward, that is. No, they're not. Ever. Because one thing leads to another, as one thing will. And before you know it, such is the sheer complexity of the human mind, that nearly anything can follow from the merest observation, tickle of memory, latest reading, whether it be the untold evil wrought upon the world by an Abraham Maslow too naively dim (and/or supremely venal) to perceive the ramifications of his own wool-gathering "psychological" theories; or Karen Horney's 1937 reminder (preminder?) that psychology describes not universal truths but cultural mores anchored ever and always to time and place; or bell hooks, the black feminist culture critic, saying remarkably sane things about love. Which is not to suggest that said remarkability lies in the conjunction of blackness, feminism and sanity, but rather that what she has to say (at least in the little flip-through I did at Borders this evening) is so much saner fare than what's being served up in the purportedly normal cafeteria of the soul operated by white heterosexual women who are little more than aging cheerleaders for a dying patriarchy. I'd say "You know who you are" but I very much doubt you do.

So, you know, things rise and fall, things come and go. Little things like that. And I am haunted by these eyes and the phantoms they conjure, neurochemical traces, ghosts, rogue proteins, lost notes, last rites, written in molecular desire. And the sound of the words themselves, their rhythm and cadence, their balance, their valence, suggestion of meanings not consciously meant. But something speaks through them, through these media, you could say. Some voice that is not ours to command, only to invite. Would you like to use the keyboard now? No, sure that's OK. I wasn't really doing anything anyway. Just sitting here thinking. So yeah, go ahead. Do you mind if I watch as the words flow out across the screen? I find it soothing, comforting, assuring. How you do go on.

Something in the way she moves. You could say. If you wanted to. If you were so inclined. But what, the title slug? Oh that. Van Morrison before he was an asshole. Band called Them. One Sunday mornin, we went walkin. Down by the old graveyard. Mystic eyes... Mystic eyes... I used to get wrecked as I could, which was very, and play the 45 at 33-and-a-third.

Somewhere in here, it's playing still.

Mys..... tic..... eyyyyyes.....

Mys..... tic..... eyyyyyes.....

Mys..... tic..... eyyyyyes.....

Mys..... tic..... eyyyyyes.....

Mys..... tic..... eyyyyyes.....

1:46 AM | link |

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

"the difference between decoration and art"

Some people seem to go trippy all over when it comes to ART. These people tend to think of themselves as artists. It's a big deal for them to be artists, because then they can tell other artists that they're artists too. Then they all talk about how heavy their art is and how they're getting these way deep insights and shit. To me, it seems a bit embarrassing. But you know my philosophy: live and let live. That's right. I mean, it's not like these individuals are actually hurting anyone with their meaningless bullshit about numinous archetypal this and that. But I have to say that this is why I am currently so fascinated by spam. It's definitely not ART, which to me, is a good thing. I fuck around with it and make it into anti-art. There's a long tradition of this sort of thing, not that I see myself as following in anybody's footsteps in this regard. I mean, in Tristan Tzara's day, they didn't even have spam. And yet, he said, "Art is not the most precious manifestation of life. Art has not the celestial and universal value that people like to attribute to it. Life is far more interesting." Yes, I would have to agree with the dead gentleman from Zürich. Yes indeed. His brouhaha precedes him. So back then, they had to use toilets and stuff like that. Urinals. Brides descending staircases in wireframe guilelessness. The fact of the matter, if you really want to know, is that I fucking hate art. I think it sucks. I would rather go to a Monster Truck rally than to the frigging Musee du Louvre (however you say that). Buncha what? Pyramids and curious little objets d'art. "Oh, Walter! Isn't that cloisinee brooch just darling?" You know? Truck rally's more lively. More shouting is THIS art, then? and everybody pretty much stinking drunk. It's an American thing, I guess. Or take this guy here. A nut case, in all likelihood. But an entertaining nutcase. Possibly with a sense of humor. Possibly not. But still. Is it art? Is it decoration? 'the fuck should I know? It's there. Isn't that enough? Being there now. Right? It is ALL-ONE, ALL-ONE, just like Dr. Bronner says. Dr. Bronner, whoever the fuck he was, was also seriously cracked. Life is crawling with whackos. Are they merely decorating our mental space? Perhaps. Actually, what got me started on all this tonight, this morning, whatever it is now, was a request from Dave Winer, the now-1600-lb gorilla of blogdom, to say something about art. I know he's been wondering why I haven't responded for so long. But the reason is that I didn't want to tell him -- or Halley, for that matter, since I'm pretty sure she's behind the whole thing; in fact, I'm beginning to suspect that Halley is really God, as she points to something about a New Age Boot Camp (quite wonderful) by one Dervala, who mentions en passant "disgusting: pineapple-flavored frogspawn"; pretty good! -- was because, as I've already said, I fucking hate art. And this is likely to be interpreted as demonstrating an overall bad attitude. Which I would be the first to admit, and often do. Can I get a witness? Can I get an Amen, brothers and sisters? But anyway, I didn't just want to say this straight out to Winer, because I thought he might come over here and hit me or something, and I don't deal well with conflict. On the other hand, maybe he'll understand. I bet he will. Because, you see, that's why I like the web, in general, and blogging in specific. The ARTISTS are too much legends in their own minds to screw around with this stuff. They want to be in one-man/one-woman shows and in galleries and museums, and places like that where their WORK can be fully appreciated. Its subtlety, its depth of feeling, its utter self-absorbtion. And there are way too many people here online. Some of whom are so far beneath the notice of these sensitively attuned Children of the Universe that, well... they don't want to, you know, like sully themselves with us common rabble. Now, I don't mind telling you that this pisses me off. A great deal. But it's a small price to pay, I suppose, to keep this arty riffraff out of my world. I once said something about all this in an EGR send. "...and here's what I think," I wrote. "That I will not last, no matter how fearless my speech. That the great is in the small. That real? What is real? And to whom? And why? That I think too much. Which is why. And to you. Which is whom. Flashes of ee cummings, bird by snow and stir by still. And still, I will not last and I know it. I have no standards. No higher calling. No shame. Didn't anybody tell you? I plagiarize freely. I can steal but I cannot rob. I want what I write to be more like a car crash than a work of art. More like a street corner than a museum. So I fuck it up on purpose. Not to be admired. To be loved. What do I care what happens when I'm dead?" And further on, at the end of that piece, which had some sad and some angry parts in the middle, I wrote this: "A rumble down the tracks a mile away. I can feel it coming. A train. I used to brake on the Penn Central when I was a kid, eighteen. Nights so cold out along Lake Erie I thought I'd die right there. Windchill thirty, maybe forty below some nights. A train is coming, passing along beside the creek now. Boxcars, tank cars, oil probably. Gondolas: steel, lumber, piggyback cargo trucks, tanks -- the military kind. Eight of them, headed guess where... I get up from the creekside and walk over as close as I can get. It's picking up speed now, past the limits of crossings and signals and switches. Big noise! Like a car crash. Like a way of saying it's not just something in the water. Like a flag, like a flash of lightning. Picking up speed and gone just like that. Like a stab in the heart. Like a cry. Like a cheer going up for the world." So see? When I do this stuff with the spam, like I'm doing here, it really does have a point. For instance, in that big one at the top? The message there is that the woman has just had an earth-shaking sexual experience, and she's sort of shell shocked, as she didn't quite believe RB had it in him. But he did. And more importantly, he does. The message is that you too, if you are a woman of my general species with similar sex-positive attitudes, well... I can supply references. Just click where it says Click Here. Duh. Or call (720) 304-8077. DO IT TODAY! Is this art? Are we not men? Fortunately, no, not all of us. And so that is why I fixed up the spammish grafik and yes, I'll admit, did decorate it so as to be pleasing to the eye, with a double #CC0000-red border and everything (did you notice? did you click everything?). And yes, I made the little rubber ducky appear and disappear. And the other woman to look in the guy's pants to see what he's got in there. Because why? (as eminem might say) Because she's interested in what he's got in there, is why. The spammers know this, of course. Nothing sells like what we've all got in our pants. And of course, they want you to buy something. I don't want you to buy anything (except tons of books from my myriad Amazon links, consistency being the hobgoblin of small minds). I am merely pointing out that when taken out of their usual and expected context, these images speak a different language. Speaking of which, the language in which they are embedded is critical as well. It must, first and foremost, be funny. Or, failing that, vaguely ontological. But it cannot afford the pretense of the numinous, the spiritual, the aesthetic, nor does it seek any truck with the veiled suggestion that There Is Something More. There is not anything more. And yet -- are you ready for the mystery of life? -- there is. The woman looks amazed at her wonderful orgasm. The woman makes a rubber duck appear. The woman looks into her friend's swimming trunks, presumably to get a good look at his penis. And that's it. That's all it needs to be. That's all she wrote.

8:20 AM | link |

Separated at Birth?

If you ask me (aren't you glad you didn't?), there's nothing worse than a smarmy fuck with a droopy dick. The more recent TV Guide piece opens with the following (sans hyperlinks, natch; sticky, sticky, sticky!).
Phillip C. McGraw, better known as Dr. Phil to the nearly six million daytime TV viewers who have made his talk show No. 2 in the nation, has a new book coming out. And no, it's not titled More Advice I Just Pulled Out of My Ass, as David Letterman joked on The Late Show. It's The Ultimate Weight Solution: 7 Keys to Weight Loss Freedom.
with viagra w/o viagra
September, 2002
one year later
caution: truly disgusting site alert

1:44 AM | link |

Monday, September 01, 2003

Credit Where Credit Is Due
It's the most beautiful day Boulder has seen all summer. Cool, clear, sunny. So I guess this is why I live here. Then why I am I sitting indoors, writing this blog post? Search me. Except that I recently got very cool email from Mike Golby, who, christ knows (if only few others do), has pointed to this EGR page often enough. In his letter, he says things like...

  • I haven't a fucking clue what it is about your writing that rings so true, but there you go. As my spiritual adviser, Father Christopher, is wont to say, "It's an eternal mystery, my son."
  • Whatever... your writing is magic and will continue to piss people off.
  • Ah fuck, just rock on. You're the voice of a generation. God knows why, but you'll just have to get used to it. Best regards and thanks for reading a note that possibly makes absolutely no sense whatsoever [mind you, you're probably quite used to it by now].

In fact, I am, Mike. I get incoherent communications quite frequently, as you and the rest of the Valued Readers can only imagine (because it's primarily you who send them). But Mike, my man, for the above good words, I think you deserve some sort of reward, and I've been scratching my head all morning about something appropriate I could send you. If only I had the money. Sadly, I do not, and believe me, my sadness over this is not for your sake alone. However, I thought I'd at least tell you what I would have sent you under happier financial circumstances.

Alright then, Ed, tell him what he almost won!

  • The OH! Cards - see more here and at the totally lame Official Site
    Pretend the universe is speaking to you personally! These were a favorite of ex-date Anomalie Aesculapius. She used them to help her decide all sorts of Really Important Things, including whether we were "ready" to meet. This was after emailing each other for about two months from ten blocks away. Evidently, the cards answered no. OH! You see, they turned up The Nurse on a background card (the images and words are on separate cards) that said WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG. Her interpretation of this was that, as a child, she'd served as an emotional caretaker -- a nurse of sorts -- to her mother and father, and that this had the unsettling effect of inclining her to do the same in relationships. I see, I said. Though I really didn't at the time. In 20-20 retrospect, I realize now I should have listened to that oracle myself. As it was, I learned far too late what sort of "nurse" Anomalie really was. Anyway, I was thinking a gift like this could save you some considerable heartache and all-around hassle down the road. I mean, if you studied it carefully for possible clues. I only wish I had.

  • The Urantia Book on CD-ROM
    Hours of fun for the whole family! Here is Today's "Thought to Ponder" from the, yeah, you guessed it, Official Site
    "Spiritual growth is first an awakening to needs, next a discernment of meanings, and then a discovery of values. The evidence of true spiritual development consists in the exhibition of a human personality motivated by love, activated by unselfish ministry, and dominated by the wholehearted worship of the perfection ideals of divinity. And this entire experience constitutes the reality of religion as contrasted with mere theological beliefs."
    Yeah, so like I'm all over that shit. And check it out: new age narcissism just doesn't get any better than this. (well actually, it does, but for purposes of argument, let's say...)
    This is the true meaning of that divine command, "Be you perfect, even as I am perfect," which ever urges mortal man onward and beckons him inward in that long and fascinating struggle for the attainment of higher and higher levels of spiritual values and true universe meanings. This sublime search for the God of universes is the supreme adventure of the inhabitants of all the worlds of time and space.


    when the Lord
    gets ready
    you gotta
    - stones

  • Yeah, well, moving on, so to speak, it also occurred to me to get you one of these...


    ...but then I thought perhaps you'd already had enough of a fucking. We've all taken our licks, have we not?

  • The Sabian Symbols
    Now here's a gift that keeps on giving. This is one of the damndestly weird books I've ever come across -- many long years ago now, you betcha. When I was into such things. Which I would not even admit under threat of torture today. And of course there's a web site. Wouldn't you just know it? I noticed that there's an actual FREE ORACLE READING you can click on, which advises: "Clear your mind, make a mental picture of the question, then click on the wizard." My mental picture was a little fuzzy, as my question was: "What the fuck's up with Golby that he's being so nice and all?" Here's what came back...
    *** AQUARIUS 3 ***
    # 303


    You may find that the rigorous restraints and rules of the situation are no longer bearable. A decision to opt out may be moral or to maintain free spirit. There are always consequences for not playing the game. Are you prepared for them? Someone could feel as though they are being taken away from home and family for a reason they don't really understand.

    Rebellion. Leaving situations although allegiance had been pledged. Wrestling with one's conscience.

    The Caution: Not being prepared to play by the rules of any socially structured game. Withdrawing support when one should be involved in a physical, mental or emotional way.

    M-a-a-a-a-a-n, is that heavy, or what? I'm saddened that you find my rigorous restraints and situationist rules no longer bearable. But I do understand, believe me. I can't bear them myself most days. So really, don't feel bad. You fucking deserter!

    While I was at it, I figured I'd better check up on our mutual pal, Mr. Gary Turner. Same question, same questionable results...

    *** LIBRA 30 ***
    # 210


    There is ability here to read spiritual understandings into concrete objects. Several different aspects can be combined to result in a truly wise outcome. Pierce through appearances to see the truth of your situation. Bring abstract truths into reality. Concentrate on questions of a philosophical nature, but try not to live in your head too much!.

    Look to the signs. Wisdom that transcends book knowledge. Phrenology. Great brains. The head, scull or cranium.

    The Caution: Analyzing things too much and reliance on intellect. Taking things far too seriously.

    Oh yeah, that's Gary all right. Always the serious one! Sad really.

    This could go on forever, I know, but I figured I should ask the oracle one more time about AKMA, that arrogant, intolerant imperialist. And here's what it said about him...

    *** CAPRICORN 30 ***
    # 300


    There are decisions to be made and possibly plans to be laid out. You can't really make all these decisions on your own, you need help. Call on the relevant knowledgeable friends or authorities, with them you'll be able to iron out the details of your situation. Strategies may need to be implemented to move things forward. However, you may feel shut out by those "in charge". .

    Masterly control. Sharing innermost secrets. Confidential information. Big guys calling the shots. Governments and secret spies.

    The Caution: Excluding those who will be affected by decisions. Exploiting people or situations.

    Holy crap, huh? I always thought the guy needed help, but a secret government spy? Who would have guessed?

    OK, so that's it. No wait, wait. No wait. One more. I got a call from Don Williams as I was wasting this perfectly beautiful day writing this fucking leviathan post. Seems I'd missed our session for today. Not good. Not good at all. You know what they say about missing sessions. So anyway, one more about why I let this happen. How could I have spaced out (we say "dissociated" to be polite) this far? I suspect it was because he ripped off my Lauren Slater find and blogged it before I could, uh... so to speak, get it up. The dirty penis-envying low-life!

    *** GEMINI 8 ***
    # 68


    You need to stand up for your rights, and possibly for those of a group. You have some support from compatriots, but you can become separated from the general situation and may have difficulty finding creative solutions that satisfy everyone. It may be time to consider what negotiations can be made to bring things back to a feeling of equilibrium. By withdrawing your energies you will see how important you really are in the situation.

    Bargaining to find more equitable solutions. Demanding better rights and conditions.

    The Caution: Becoming obsessed with what is wanted. Refusing compromises. Protesting about everything. Not noticing one's rewards.

    What's with this "withdrawing your energies" bullshit? Oh crap, he's going to abandon me. I knew it! He doesn't care about me. He's going on vacation (again!) and I'm going to go crazy, I just know I will. Well... relatively speaking, that is. Hard to go somewhere you already are.

  • Simply The Best
    And so, as this lovely day draws to a close, and I prepare to take my first real bath in about a month, I leave you, Mike Golby, with this one little thing I can give you. As you see, I made it all by myself. With a little help, of course, from Mr. Bezos in Arts & Crafts. I hope you like it. If you mouse over the picture, I'm sure you'll see that she looks much better my way! So hey, go ahead, give her a shot!

6:52 PM | link |

"RageBoy: Giving being fucking nuts a good name since 1985."
~D. Weinberger
28 October 2004

Chris Locke's photos More of Chris Locke's photos

Until a minute ago, I had no photos. I still have no photos to speak of. I don't even have a camera. But all these people were linking to "my photos." It was embarassing. It's still embarassing. But I'm used to that.

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