Dear Men of the World   


Please excuse me as I entirely objectify you for a moment.



Generally speaking, I find myself drawn to a man because of his personality first, viewing his physical appearance as a secondary concern.


That being said, I do appreciate some eye candy now and again.


One of my favorite aesthetic views is the pull of a long-sleeved, button-down dress shirt as it stretches and slackens across the expanse of a broad-shouldered man. (What can I say? My tastes are simple, but exacting.) You would think that the one benefit I could glean from working in a cube farm would be regular glimpses of this delicious site - but as approx 98% of my office mates are women, I assure you that access to this simple, small distraction in my daily life is very rare indeed.


And outside the work place - a man so dressed is rarer still.


Recently I watched both Key Largo and To Catch a Thief - and at least once during both those films I thought, "By golly, that man can really wear clothes."


I will concede that both Bogart and Grant, with their carriages and figures and their certain quel que chose could probably manage to look attractive even in well-worn jeans and a ratty t-shirt...but there just something about the old Hollywood mens' wardrobe that make you feel any man can wear them and look that good. Watching old movies make me long for men in tailored suits; wide-brimmed hats;, and button-down shirts that always look fresh-pressed, no matter how bad the humidity, how long the sleeves have been rolled up, and regardless of the number of punches the wearer has thrown or bullets he's dodged.


I say let's resurrect Edith Head (not in the creepy, brain-eating Romeroesque way - but rather in the no-ill consequence, never-mind-the-sacrifices-she-might-have-made-by-dying Whedon-esque way) and set her, her dark glasses, and her pin-cushion loose on the man in the street.


I could use a change of scenery.




Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, January 31, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Please Excuse the Lateness of My Reply   


The number of unanswered emails in my inbox is mounting - and I just wanted to let everyone know that if your missive is currently languishing in my inbox, I'm not ignoring you; it's been a busy past few days, and things will be busy for a few more.



I mention this here because the last time I didn't respond to some people's email the same day (I was down with a stomach virus) - several people sent desperate messages of concerning, one or two even threatening to contact the National Guard. It's enough to give a girl a complex.



You know, just because I have the Borg-like ability to be on-line at any given time doesn't mean I will be.



Still..y'all make me wonder if perhaps I don't spend a wee-bit too much time on line......



Will try to catch up as time permits.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, January 31, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Monday Morning Madness   


Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, January 30, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Blogger Dinner Party   


Yoinked unceremoniously, like a tablecloth on a well-laid table from J-Walk Blog


I have a rather sizable kitchen table, which is largely neglected from lack of use* - so when I saw this meme-to-be on J-Walk Blog, it seemed like a chance for my poor table to get some (virtual) use afterall.



Here's the deal:



Attention bloggers: This is my attempt to start one of those blogging memes, so please listen up...



The goal of this exercise is to identify nine other bloggers that you would like to meet for dinner/drinks. The only caveat

is that these bloggers must be strangers -- you haven't met them before. State the blogger's name, a link to the blog, and

why you would like him/her to be in attendance.



Let me say before I get to the list, that if you are a blogger I haven't met but with whom I maintain any kind of regular

correspondence with (ie email, lj's, etc) your name will not appear on this list; not because I wouldn't like to have dinner

with you (I would) but because I felt this was an exercise in identifying folks I've not had the chance to chat with at all,

but would like to.



And of course, if the list were longer, there would be more of you on it.




  1. Dan, Gusset Blog: Dan links lots of cool stuff, is a musician, and is from the UK...which makes him top in my book. I would like for him to try and convince me in person how

    PANTO= BAD and HAGGIS=TASTY - both of which he has inferred in my comments section, and neither of which I

    can understand.

  2. Jonny the Horse, The Bed and

    Breakfast Man
    : Johnny the Horse is thoughtful, funny, insightful and very free with the Aussie slang (some of

    which I swear he's making up). Also, I firmly believe he can be counted on to bring the wine (and as it happens,

    Austrailian shiraz is my going favorite.)

  3. Matthew Baldwin, Defective Yeti. Matt's a very funny,

    pop-culture saavy writer, who amuses me daily between his site and his contributions to
    href="http://www.themorningnews.org/" target="_blank">The Morning News
    . I've no doubt he'd break the ice for the party, and then keep the table

    in stitches. He's an absolute must have on the guest list, as my real life friends (who would likely crash the party as many are also Defective Yeti fans) would really

    enjoy the chance to see me laugh so hard Shiraz shot right out of my nose.

  4. Helen, Everyday Stranger: Helen's made a proper voyeur out of me. I read her nigh-daily confessionals when they are hot off the presses (bless you Bloglines for keeping me current), and never fail to be moved and/or entertained by her exploits. She'd be the one who , when we were lighting cigarettes and giddy with wine, would wow us with some eyebrow raising tales.

  5. John Walkenbach, J-Walk Blog (who would have made the list even if he hadn't invited me to *his* virtual blogger dining party - but he did - which makes me terribly happy.) John seems very down to earth, and his blog is a great combination of Excel advice and entertaining links (the astute among you will note that many of the links I post originate with him). I suspect he'd be the guy who could talk to any guest at the table, and make them feel at ease. Also - hopefully, he'd bring along a guitar or banjo and keep us entertained well into the night.

  6. LTR, Little Toy Robot: Lover of book, comics, robots and obscurities. I think you can see why I read LTR everyday.

  7. Warren Ellis, Warrenellis.com: (Whom I can only think of as "Warren Ellis"; never as "Warren" or even "Mr. Ellis") Comic book writer, author, and whip-smart professional misanthrope. Warren Ellis' blog (and stories and comics - check out the sadly now defunct Transmetropolitan series if you haven't yet) never fail to excite, delight, and disgust and disturb me. I think Warren Ellis would probably be a troublesome dinner party guest - whispering lewd things in everyone's ear; tearing down everyone's political idealology and discussing elaborate medical operations in gorey detail while everyone is dining....but really, that's what would make his presence at the table so delightful.

  8. Eric Friedberg Peter Rojas, Engadget: Founder and contributor to my favorite gadget blog. He must come and tell me where he gets all his wonderful toys.

  9. Christine, Mirabilis: Mirabilis covers a vast array of topics; but my favorites are Christine's coverage of archaelogical and historical finds. Her interests include medieval recipes, which would give me a reason to try and bake four-and-twenty blackbirds into a pie - something I've always wanted to do.

  10. Karla, Confessions of a Grade School Role Model : I love her stories about being an American teaching in Japan. They're insightful, and her accompanying photos are great to look at - and I bet her told-in-person stories are fantastic too. I think this motley crew might be a bit of an adjustment for her, since she seems to have grown accustomed to quieter ways.


Who'd be on your list?


Update: You know - I just realized I was only supposed to invite *9* other bloggers...but I've invited 10 and now my table is uneven. (I never was good at reading directions all the way through. I tend to just plow right into things...)



Suppose I'll just have to have Trotwood come along to for an even 12.


* Well, ok, except for marathon table-top RPG gaming sessions - for which it is still somehow too small.

But let's be fair, when gaming is involved, can any table
truly be big enough?

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, January 28, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Friday Follies   


Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 27, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Dear Volkswagon:   


Why must you use technology for evil rather than for good? - [SH].



I mean, on the one hand: really excellent work, no question. On the other the singing-in-the-rain-scene from Singing in the Rain? Shouldn't some iconic pop culture moments be considered sacred?



I'm both impressed and disgusted.




Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 27, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Perhaps My Soul Mate is Henry Bemis   


Recently, I had the un-parralled pleasure of used-book shopping with friends. (Used book shopping is a rare pleasure in-and-of itself, but shopping with friends means they may point out treasures you elsewhile might have missed.*)


I realized while we were there, that my approach to shopping in a used bookstore is markedly different than how I shop in your everyday, Ultra-Mega-Chain (UMC) bookstore.


When I go to the UMC bookstore, I usually stop in with specific target books in mind. UMC bookstores, despite differences in service and atmosphere, generally carry the same stock, and are comfortably predictable in their product availability. Certainly, browsing inevitably follows once the target books are safely in hand, but there is a rhythm to it in a UMC- a plan. Perhaps this is because I have worked in a UMC bookstore, and therefore feel a natural inclination to follow the floorplan's flow. First to science-fiction/fantasy, then fiction, then the histories, then display tables, employee picks and new releases; hardcover then paperback, then lastly I peruse the impluse buy trade paperbacks on display at the cash-registers. I generally only waver from this path when distracted by the promise of caffeine and confection in the conviently situated cafe.


Look carefully at my local large booksellers. You can probably see a faint outline of my path worn into their carpets.


Used bookstores, on the other hand, present their offerings catch-as-catch can. Books are often not yet sorted, poorly sorted, strangely sorted, or not sorted at all; and as their product offerings depend on the discarded, overstocked, and forgotten books of others, their stock is anything but predictable.


One does not go to a used bookstore to quickly pick up the latest book reviewed in The Times; oh no - it is the perogative of the used-book shopper to browse...indeed, to wander, and in a used bookstore, I find I am unable to find a sensible path.


I try, mind, you, I diligently try. I make my way up to sci-fi/fantasy, and take the shelves slowly, systematically, top-to-bottom (one must never skipped the lower-most shelves - these are too oft neglected and are where wonderful authors like Wodehouse and Zola live) and left to right. And then something happens - perhaps I'm intoxicated by the heady scent of decaying-paper, or overwhelmed by the possibility of discovering a well-loved copy of a long-forgotten title - and the next thing I know I am transformed from a saavy, bookstore shopping automaton into a wild whirling dervish, bouncing back and forth between sections like a pinball in mad motion. While in sci-fi I will remember a fiction title some recommended to me, and as I race over to see if they have it, a biography catches my eye, holds my attention a moment or two before my gut grabs me and I'm back in fiction, seeking out books I might have missed by stand-by favorites, then I'm bolting back to sci-fi to finish perusing the shelves I might have skipped, then to fiction where I gently caress a nicer, illustrated edition of a book I already own and have read a hundred times over, then I'm mired in the histories, wondering how I hadn't even heard of a particular topic before now when it is one of which I am clearly meant to be enamored...


Unchecked, I can go on like this for hours.


Accompanied, I can still go on like this for hours, but I feel a bit badly about it, and am prone to making frequent apologies.**


At long last, I come out of my stupor at the checkout counter, arms dusty and laden with books. Glassy-eyed, I hand my credit card over to the slightly frightened cashier, then take my lovely treasures home to be enjoyed. Some I find I must read right away, devoured like candy right out of the bag; while others I peacefully place on the shelf, happy to know they are there to be enjoyed at some future date; tomorrow, next week, or even years away.


What I realized after this particular trip *** is that I approach my life in much the same way I approach shopping at a used bookstore. I have intentions for following a path, having a life's plan, and working towards specific goals. I have, after all, been made to understand that that is where success lies, and adulthood, and the actualization of dreams.


But then, when I get down to it, when I am really faced with all the things there are to do and experience, I get lifestyle ADD - there's too much and I want to do everything all at once. I want to learn about everything, and try everything, and pounce on new discoveries and go back and revisit old joys; and lifepath be damned I'm off the highway and down the byroads and overall lost and intoxicated by the scenery.


I have come to terms with the fact that this means I will likely not come by career success in the fiscal traditional sense. I shall have to suffer through my years without the benefit of a corner office, an impressive title, or even a my own reality tv series.


In return I hope that when my time comes, I won't go gently into that goodnight, but wildly and madly; my soul dusty from good travel and laden with stories.


And I hope they let me take my books with me.


 


* I should note that this is the sort of pleasure that is good for your soul, not necessarily your bank account.


** Granted, these apologies sometimes include the phrases "You'll have to drag me out of here kicking and screaming" and "...pry it from my cold, dead hands, you TV watching Philistine." but you must understand, my underlying intentions are contrite and good.

*** And which the rest of you probably won't find interesting at all, but hey it's my blog and no one's twisting your arm to read it or anything...that is unless my robot army is well ahead of schedule - which would of course please me no end.


 

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Postings More Illicit Than a Whisper   


There is something about sharing secrets...our own, and especially those of others...that can make people giddy. Even the most banal of confessions, told under the right circumstances, can seem intimate and thrilling.



Enter Postsecret.com, which invites anyone to share their secrets with the world:


Mail Your Secret Today

You are invited to anonymously contribute a secret to the PostSecret project. Your secret can be a regret, fear, betrayal, desire, feeling, confession, or childhood humiliation. Reveal anything - as long as it is true and you have never shared it with anyone before.



Steps:

Create your own 4"x6" Postcard.

Tell your secret anonymously.

Stamp and mail the postcard.



I've considered sending a secret or two of my own...but then I thought, "I'm a blogger, what secrets do I have left?"*



*Those of you who know my real secrets are hereby invited to keep your big traps shut.


Related Items:

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Sunday Snow-Day Madness : A Pre-Emptive Strike   



It's been a snowy weekend here in Philadelphia - and even now outside the powdery white stuff is blowing about in such a way that I am not sure if it's blowing-up or coming down. It's all quite lovely, and I've been for a few walks in it close to home in the past two days - but I'm now ready to stay in, warm and cozy.

I realize this post is going up a bit early - but I've got pasta sauce simmering in the crockpot downstairs, an open bottle of wine, and a warm pair of flannel pajamas calling me - not to mention a date with Mssrs. Strange and Norrell. Ergo, I'm trying to get the minimum number of chores done (of which this is the last) so I can spend a guilt-free remainder of the day huddling against the cold in their warm and magical embrace.

I hope everyone had a safe, warm, cozy weekend.



Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, January 23, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Well, It *Must* Be a Slow Day On the Internet...   


...because someone actually went looking for my 100 Things About Me, and then complained that it wasn't there. (Victim of the recent hosting issues, dontcha know).



Alas, I was unable to locate a copy of the original file, so I had to come up with a whole new list. So, for those of you who are supremely bored out there in InternetLand, I present to you the new, improved, 100 Things About Me. (Although, to be fair - if you've read the original list, this is probably more like "78 New Things About Me" - but that would involve changing HTML in several places, and I'm just not that bored.)



Related Items:

Posted by Sarcasmo on Friday, January 21, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Friday Follies   


Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 20, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Yes, It Really Is As Random As the Inside of My Brain   


I've been dodging this meme for days now - but as some friends have done it, I feel obliged to do it as well. *

  1. Leslie Bricusse and Anthony Newley - Oompa Loompa

  2. YMCK- Magical 8 bit

  3. Hall & Oates - She's Gone

  4. Nigel Kennedy - Violin Concerto in D Op.35 - 2. Canzonetta [Andante]

  5. Commie64 - sidewalk bullies

  6. Isaac Stern - Hungarian Dance No. 5 (Brahms)

  7. Natalie Cole - Thou Swell

  8. The Turtles - Let Me Be

  9. The Who - Let's See Action

  10. Georges Bizet - Carmen, Suite No.2 - La Garde montante



Rules:
1. Open up the music player on your computer.


2. Set it to play your entire music collection.


3. Hit the "shuffle" command.


4. Tell us the title of the next ten songs that show up (with their musicians), no matter how embarrassing. That's right, no skipping that Carpenters tune that will totally destroy your hip credibility. It's time for total musical honesty. Write it up in your blog or journal and link back to at least a couple of the other sites where you saw this.


5. If you get the same artist twice, you may skip the second (or third, or etc.) occurances. You don't have to, but since randomness could mean you end up with a list of ten song with five artists, you can if you'd like.


Mind you, what I have on my portable MP3 player at the moment is mostly film soundtracks - so this isn't a good representation of what I've been listening to lately.



Also - you should pity my neighbors - as since I fired the MP3 player up for this post, I've been singing along to everything sing-a-longable that has come on. (Right now it's the Indigo Girls cover of Dire Straits Romeo and Juliet). Poor neighbors.



*If they jumped off a bridge would I jump too? I'd definitely think about it, as things are more fun with friends than without them - but frankly jumping off a bridge would most likely involve some climbing, which really isn't my thing. I'd probably take pictures and blog about it, though.


Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Warning: These Are In Poor Taste, and Will No Doubt Crush Some of Your Childhood Icons   


So it's no surprise that they amuse me.


Worth 1000's Pop Culture Monster's 5.


This may well be my favorite.


Related Items:

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Yaar! I'm Such a Pirate I'm Putting This Here Instead of the Quiz Blog!   


My pirate name is:


Bloody Mary Rackham





Every pirate lives for something different. For some, it's the open sea. For others (the masochists), it's the food. For you, it's definitely the fighting. You have the good fortune of having a good name, since Rackham (pronounced RACKem, not rack-ham) is one of the coolest sounding surnames for a pirate. Arr!


Get your own pirate name from fidius.org.


Found on the very dangerous Generator Blog.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

I Dream I Am Jekyll Dreaming I’m Hyde   


I’ve not been sleeping well. I blame the weather.



It has become cold here; so cold that when standing outside the cold blows through your clothes and into your bones; so cold one has to breath and try not to cough the air back out because our nice, warm lungs are offended by the invading chill; so cold that it feels like we’re back indoors for hours before the tingling in our extremities finally gives way to tepidity – and for tepidity we are grateful.


It’s not the cold itself that is the culprit though – it’s my apartment’s heating. One of the downsides of living in an older building is that the heating system is old – and loud. With this intense cold the heating system is working overtime, ergo I am treated nightly to a barrage of hissing, banging and popping that would rival the most enthusiastic performance of Stomp. And as there are two heaters in my bedroom – I the grand cacophony is doubled.


If this keeps up, the bags beneath my eyes will require their own porters, just so I can get around.


I thought to force my body into sleep yesterday; I consumed no caffeine after noon, I took a bubble bath, I had a dinner of little substance washed down with two glasses of wine, I spent most of the evening prone, I read, I went to bed earlier than usual and lay in the dark.


My body, however, had other ideas.

I tossed and turned and did not sleep. I felt like Alice after the mushrooms: one moment my bed was too small, I found myself a giantess, my hands and feet peeking out under the covers and over the bed’s ends; the next my bed was an unfathomable ocean too big to navigate, much too big and cold to sleep in alone; I kicked off the blankets for being too heavy, than mourned their absence as I shivered in the cold. I repeatedly called out to the dark that this was making me cranky and the world should let me sleep, but neither the dark nor the world seemed much to care.


It is on nights like these, when I watch the bright red numbers on my ceiling climb to and pass 3:30 AM that I regret having a projection clock in the bedroom.


Sometime after it seems I did fall asleep, but my brain, being my brain, sent me right into my it's favorite of torture - a false awakening dream. There I was in my room, in my pajamas, still twisted in my blankets and still watching time continue onward as the sky lightened against my will. And even in this dream I was uncomfortable and could not sleep; but as it happened I was uncomfortable because two of my female friends were in my room – one standing by the opposite side of the bed; the other with her knee digging into my back, and fighting me for the covers.


In dream logic I am not surprised to find them there – only irritated. I grumble for them to go home to their own apartment and sleep there, as I am finding sleep is hard enough (in dreamland they were roommates, and their the flat was above mine). I am informed in no uncertain terms that they are there because I called them. Specifically, I had been out at a club and I had called them looking for bartender recommendations (I have no idea what this means) , and so they had come and collected me and put me to bed.

My dream self had no recollection of these events and denies them vehemently. She’s been tossing and turning all night and is exhausted from insomnia – not from spending her evenings debauched and drunk dialing friends. The friend who is not embroiled with me in a battle for the blankets tells me emphatically that I had been out in my sequined red dress.

Here, I think, I have her at last trapped in her own lie – I don’t own a sequined red dress. But she points my attention towards the back of my bedroom door – and there, on the hook that normally holds my robe, limply hangs a red halter dress, a la Marilyn. It is red and made of a shiny material, but she is wrong; it is not sequined.


It occured to me when I woke this morning – my room not transformed but for the absence of both said dress and said friends – that this particular friend would not have made that fashion mistake.


Before I wake, though, I have a second dream. This dream is a sequel twice over. First, it is a sequel because although I’ve not been in the dream locale in real life before - an apartment with whiter-than-white walsl, minimal furnishings and large, almost full-wall windows that reveal it is high in the hills or mountains overlooking a very scenic view - I have dreamed it before - recently - in fact I dreamed about it for the first time on Friday last.

I thought when I last dreamed the place that it belonged to one set of friends, but in this dream I learned it belongs to a different couple– An in this dream I am there for an informal gathering.


Here is the second way in which it was a sequel – I am in the kitchen/dining area with the hostess, and I am telling her about the previous dream – but as though it really happened to me and recently. I explain to her that I need to find a doctor because I am leading two lives – that when I believe I am going to sleep some repressed part of myself stays awake and goes out to dance me down the road to self-destruction. My dream self is doesn’t really remember the wild nights – except in occasional flashes. But she is eternally exhausted, and worries about her physical and mental health.


On waking, I find this all rather disappointing.


Dreaming sequels is not new to me; I’ve done it all my life. I imagine it comes from a life soaked in books and films; it follows a certain sort of logic to me that my dreams, which are allegedly the stories my brain makes based on input from my waking life, would also revisited characters and locales that have served well in the past.

I wonder if people ever had sequel dreams before the advent of serial stories, films, and television.


Growing up I would dream of a particular city from time to time – it was old and of the past, of vaguely medieval design, and I always felt it had Italian influence even though I had never been to Italy. As I got older the city got older – bits crumbled more – and the inhabitants – often toga or cloak-clad, aged and changed with time – but when I arrived I would be greeted with a warm meal from old friends who would marvel at how I'd grown - or perhaps by a knowing nod from a passerby in the street. I was recognized – and perhaps even expected. This city never questioned my comings and goings and I loved the place and knew it; it was as familiar to me as my own backyard and my body felt like it had been there all my life.


This series of dreams goes back to almost as far as I can remember – and continued on into my early adulthood (I’m not even sure it is finished; their frequency having never been consistent – they’d occur days in a row sometimes, and then weeks, months, even years apart.)


What I remember about most about these dreams is that they were full of action. My time was divided between stealthy observations, winning battles (more often with my wits than my brawn) – and running – always running – racing along stony streets, down mysterious corridors, or along the walls and rooftops. And I would wake from these dreams with cramped muscles and sore feet – both exhausted and elated.


I liked to believe that in these weren't dreams at all - that somehow while my body here slept I was having another life – a life in which I was – if not heroic - than adventurous – and where I was known and accepted and recognized for my courage and wit and daring.


And now I am grown to find I am dreaming of the world I know – the world I am in during the waking day – and I am dreaming that I am bored and tired; I am dreaming a world of drudgery in which I’m dreaming a life of excitement – and it’s excitement that even my dream-self cannot remember. This is meta-dreaming at it’s very worst.


I would much prefer to be awake in the world where I am dancing in the red-halter dress or running mischievously through anicent streets wearing Roman sandals. Then I would be happy to dream this brain-dead world of 9-5 chair-warming just to give my tired feet and soul a rest.




Posted by Sarcasmo on Tuesday, January 18, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Test Post   


Just testing the technorati tags feature...


Related Items:

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, January 17, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Monday Morning Madness   


Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, January 16, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Friday Follies   


Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 13, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Fog   


The city has been draped in fog lately – and I must admit, I’ve been loving it. *


I have mentioned before that I am one of those strange creatures who enjoys wandering the streets under overcast skies and on lazy, rainy days; fog evokes feelings in me that are similar, but not quite the same.



With rain, our paces are slowed, sounds are dampered, and those with strong constitutions (and/or a strong umbrella) are treated to a shiny, quiet version of our daily world – punctuated by the melodic rhythm of the rain and full of glistening shadows.



Like the rain, fog changes the landscape and soundtrack of daily life, but with fog our world becomes not just wet but indistinct; vistas and skylines become gauzy and dreamlike – blurring into one another until they are indistinguishable.



Unlike the rain, there is no protection from fog. You can either cower indoors to avoid it – or step outside and be in it – breathe it in as it clings to your hair, clothes and skin with dewy tenderness; walking in the fog requires a full commitment.



In the city, fog makes us lose our hardened bearings; and walk with slow wonder through cloud; wondering when the world went topsy-turvy, now that we find the clouds settling closer and closer to our cracked and uneven sidewalks. Skyscrapers, those forlorn giants of the urban terrain, are swallowed and transformed; their peaks vanishing in the ever-descending mist. Each building is made singular , cut-off from their brethren by the ever shrinking landscape, and one wonders by climbing their stairs (or entrusting oneself to their elevators) will lead not to the executive offices but rather to a new, fantastical world – full of creatures that normally spend their days looking down on us with derision, fear, envy, or compassion.** Fog makes every step a change for adventure and discovery; each junction a chance to find a priceless treasure, horrific monster, or an unmarked path previously missed.



Night fog is by far my favorite. In the daytime, the sun is always there; threatening to burn the fog away and reveal the world as it always we expect to be, as it always is and always was. But night and fog are a well matched pair – together they make the mystery of the world complete; for a night fog wanderer the world is revealed only gradually – sometimes so slowly that the world evolves with each single breath, each dense step; a world pregnant with terrible and wonderful possibilities.



If after a walk in night fog all I discover is the my front steps exactly where I expect them to be, I will climb them having had a brief remembrance of what it was like to see the world with hungry new eyes, full of hope and wonder.







*(This should make it immediately obvious that I don’t drive.)

**One might also wonder if she spends too much time reading fantasy novels.


Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 13, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Crack That Whip!   


If you're like me, you occassionally watch MTV - and (in those rare moments they are actually showing music videos) you sometimes wonder, 'What is this crap?'.



This, of course, means we are old, unhip, and well, no longer MTV's target audience.



However, it doesn't mean we can't teach those young whippersnappers a thing or two about music and videos (and gaming the system). By way of Washington Interns Gone Bad:

Go to MTV's Total Request Live page, scroll all the way to the bottom, select "Other," and write in Devo for the artist and Whip It for the video title. Oh yeah, and please spread the word.


I think this is brilliant..and that everyone should take a moment and go do it.


I mean right now.



And hey...MTV? Looks like you've gone to being the voice of a generation to The Man. (And not in the cool 'Da Man' way..but in a decidedly oppressive 'The Man' moniker way). You should really think about that. Is controlling the music industry really worth your pop culture street cred?

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 12, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Play With Your Face!   


With The St. Andrew's Face Morpher.



Here are my results - including me as a baby, a Bottecelli, a monkey, a manga character, my own male twin and several more incarnations besides.



A few things I should mention:



I am behaving myself and not transforming photos of my friends and loved ones - mostly because I'm hoping y'all will do it yourselves, and then post them. (Or, you can email them to me and I'll drop'em in my Flickr space.)

Posted by Sarcasmo on Tuesday, January 11, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

A Public Service Announcement   


Have an overactive imagination? Home alone? Then Repulsion might be a poor choice for late night, turn-all-the-lights-out movie viewing.



That is all.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, January 10, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Monday Morning Madness   




And on an unrelated note (not that any of today's links are related) - if you are a Netflix user, and want to trade recommendations, email me so we can be Netflix friends.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Monday, January 10, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Friday Follies   


I just wanted to take a second to thank everyone who emailed, IMed, commented, etc with ideas to help me with the recent hosting drama.





It's good to have such smart friends.





This site seems to be all straightened out (except for some minor css tweaking I want to do when I have a second) - and hopefully we'll get Wednesdays Off domain back up and running soon. (*fingers crossed*)





And now, onto the links.




Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 06, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Saints Preserve Me ...   


I just can't resist:

 

 

 

What kind of pirate am I? You decide!
You can also view a breakdown of results or put one of these on your own page!
Brought to you by Rum and Monkey



Yaarrr...and such.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Thursday, January 06, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

"At least that Jimmy Stewart version had that giant rabbit who ran the Savings & Loan."*   


Last night I treated myself to a Jean Arthur, Mister Goes to... double-feature: Mr. Deeds Goes to Town and Mr. Smith Goes to Washington. (Hooray for Netflix!). Both films are more or less the same story: A small-town man is sent to the Big City (where everyone is living without a moral or ethical compass) - only to defeat the system and win the heart of the feisty and jaded Jean Arthur through his good looks, innate goodness, sharp honesty, and penchant punching out anyone who slanders him.**


Even if you haven't seen these movies (and really, you should) you're likely to find them very familiar. Every city mouse/country mouse tale to play out in American cinema for the past fifty years seems to nod to both the Mister movies.


There are the out-and-out remakes (like Mr. Deeds - a film I have no desire to actively seek out but would probably sit through if it came on on cable) of course - but also the more subtle echoes nearly everywhere you look. While watching Mr. Deeds Goes to Town last night I was startled to find a newsroom scene so blazingly familiar I found myself confused (moreso than usual), until I realized I had in fact seen it. Only I saw it in in The Hudsucker Proxy (in retrospect, a veritable homage to Capra) - framing, blocking, pacing and all.


For the most recent version of Mr. Smith look no further than Elle Woods in Legally Blonde 2; which somehow manages to lift the storyline from Mr. Smith almost directly, yet still manages to be shallow and vapid (in a fun, guilty-pleasure sort of way).


Look closely at almost any American fish-out-of-water story, and you're likely to find Mr. Smith or Mr. Deeds somewhere there.


I suppose one of things that make the original films so good (and so often imitated) is the fact that they are still terribly relevant. People still feel disillusioned about the government and its efforts (a theme in both movies); folks fear being judged (and misjudged) for their actions; and in America there is still a struggle between who's view on life and moral values are the most superior.***


On a different note, Mr. Deed Goes to Town introduced me to a new (and in my opinion, preferable) definition of the word pixilated:




"an early American expression derived from the word "pixies," meaning elves. They would say the pixies had got him. As we nowadays would say, a man is 'barmy.'"





I intend to use that each and everytime I am asked to describe myself in the future.


Them: How are you today, Sarcasmo?


Me:Absolutely pixalated, thanks.

Mr. Deeds Goes to Town also introduced me to Gary Cooper - who's easy smile and enigmatic facial expressions could potentially make him my next GAoH boyfriend.****


And lest you think I'm ignoring him, I assure you that the unbearingly charming and vulnerable James Stewart has long been on that list.


Most-adorable-filibuster-ever.



*That's from a episode of The Simpsons, but I suspect many of you already knew that.


**Because nothing says "Goodness" and "American Values" like some down-home wisdom peppered with mindless violence. I suspect the central idea of these films is somewhere along the lines of "Good American values come from small towns" or "Big cities are the kens of corruption" or even the more simple "It is the responsibility of every man to look out for one another" - but the lesson that I took away from them was "A man's moral goodness is directly proportional to accuracy of his right-hook."


Very Superman vs. Lex Luthor, come to think of it - right down to the punching.


***As so skillfully trumped up by our media during the recent Red vs. Blue wars Presidential election.


****Although, to be honest, despite those plump lips he doesn't look to be a terribly good kisser, which is a big strike against him. Even with long-dead gentleman a girl's got to have her standards.


Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 05, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

*Tap tap tap*..Is This Thing On?   


If you can read this, then the DNS change has gone through for you. Hooray!



Had a bit of downtime the other day when I came home to discover that my and Sarcasmom's blogs apparently no longer existed. (Which explained why I suddenly stopped getting email. When a girl doesn't get her daily deluge of Spam, she knows something is wrong.) Apparently, our blog hosts closed-up shop, and I hadn't gotten the memo.



Luckily, I found Lunar pages, who had me set up with them in record time. My DNS change even went through at lightning speed. (Well, sort of. My folks can get to my page, and I can get to it from work, but my browser at home seems determined to point to the old name server, and I'm not quite sure what I need to do to make it stop. I'm hoping it works itself out over the next few days.)



On the downside, because bloghosts registered Sarcasmom's blog, Wednesdays Off, for me when I signed with them last year, they need to be the ones to insitute the name server change. I have not yet been able to reach them - so her domain is still free floating.



She's is still posting though - anyone looking for Wednesdays Off can find it at its temporary home here (or alternately here).



So things may still be shifting around here for a while - please be patient. And if any of you techie folks out there have a suggestion as to (a) how to force my browser to go to the right site or (b) how to get around the domain name issue, please send it my way. Thanks!

Posted by Sarcasmo on Wednesday, January 05, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

A Good Start   


Yesterday may have been the most restful day I've had in months. Love in the Time of Cholera clutched jealously in hand, I refused leave the warm cocoon of my bed until hunger finally drove me from under the covers and into the kitchen. Then it was mostly me on the sofa with Cholera (and later, The Impressionist) until my eyes wouldn't focus on the words anymore.



It did occur to me yesterday morning that aside from my New Year's Eve gathering,* I had a fairly solitary long-weekend plan; which is fine with me, as it happens. I think it's a good idea to spend time with oneself every so often, and allow the hurricane of thoughts that tear through our brains to settle down and be acknowledged and heard.** I am comfortable with my own company.



Still, I briefly considered calling some friends up to see if they wanted to hang out, but in the end what I really wanted to do was read, and I wasn't sure how that conversation would go. Probably something like this:



Sarcasmo:Hey, feel like coming over and reading?

Friend: Why? Did you forget how to do it yourself?



In the end, it was just me and the books. It did make me wonder, though, if anyone has ever had a reading party. Guests would bring whatever reading material they chose, wearing their most comfortable clothes and gather somewhere with overstuffed chairs and sofas and piles of floor pillows. There could be coffee and cookies, or wine and cheese, or pizza and beer, or perhaps most ideally a potluck buffett laid out in warming trays, so people could nibble as the mood struck them. Individuals might break into small groups to murmur about an author or series in quiet corners, or perhaps clear their throats and read aloud a particular passage that moves them; there would be no music other than the small gasps of surprise and bursts of laughter the prose might bring, and the comforting shush of pages turning around you.



Heck, I'd go to that party. (Depending on how long the party was, I might even bring two books. I'm that kind of party animal.)



I realize this may not appeal to everyone, and that I may be one of the few people who don't think it's strange to consider reading a social experience. Perhaps it's because growing up, it was not unusal for the family to sit in the living room, television on (usually tuned to the news), and all of us sitting there, half an eye on the what was going on in the world, the rest of our attention focused on our book, newspaper, magazine, or crossword puzzle.



I find an easy cammarederie in being around other readers, even if they don't read the same sort of things I do. I'm not sure what it is, and I'm not sure it matters.



To make up for yesterday's lazing, I spent today doing all the chores and things I'd been putting off - which involved a surprising (and for my neighbors, probably unsettling) amount of singing at the top of my lungs and dancing like a maniac when a song I liked came on my MP3 player. Spending some quiet time with your mind is all well and good, but sometimes you have to let the body and soul get their kicks in too.



And happily, since my chores are done and I'm blissfully off from work tomorrow, there's nothing stopping me from reading until the wee hours this evening.



Happy New Year indeed!





*My fellow revellers will no doubt be happy to know that I cannot find a way to extract the EyeToy Groove images from my PS2. Alas. They would have made for some good icons. I spent sometime today unlocking the last few songs...and then realized that Sony had someone fooled me into doing aerobics in my living room. Curse them!

**Most of my thoughts seemed to focus on doing something rude to the person outside my window who insisted on blowing his trumpet or trombone randomly throughout the day. (I wouldn't have minded so much if it had been played in a more musical way, and a less I'm-drunk-and-armed-with-a-brass-instrument sort of way). Seems when it comes down to it, my solitary thoughts aren't that deep. The unexamined life may not be worth living, but the examined life isn't always as exciting as one thinks.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, January 02, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Well, It Is Less Messy Than Actually Giving Someone Your Heart I Suppose   


Biojewelry: rings made from the bone tissue of you and the one you love.



Finally - someone has invented something that is both unbearably romantic and...well...icky.





Posted by Sarcasmo on Sunday, January 02, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

And So It Begins   


2005 has started lovely, bright and sunny. It would be a lovely day to go out-of-doors, but per personal tradition I intended to spend January 01 hunkered down against the perils of string band music, and more dastardly, the drunken folks who go out to see them.



It is my intention to spend all of today with my ringer turned off, entrenched in books, stretching and and curling like a cat in whatever warm nook suits my fancy, making the delightful transition back and forth between wakefullness and naps, and, should I decide to dress, it will only be to change into a clean set of flannel lounge pajamas.



I hope you all had a safe, happy new year's eve - and that you start the year doing the things you love.

Posted by Sarcasmo on Saturday, January 01, 2005
Permanent Link   


|

Sheer Vanity


100 Things About Me
Blogger Profile
My Netflix Queue
Wishlist
www.flickr.com
Sarcasmo's photos More of Sarcasmo's photos

Blogroll