trochee: (together)
In honor of the five-hour home-decorating marathon gauntlet of Swedish flatpack furniture that [livejournal.com profile] imtboo and I went through yesterday (with coaching and support from [livejournal.com profile] blackwingedboy), I am posting a link to the IKEA walkthrough. (update: it's a lot more violent than I remember.)

I must say, we did extremely well. And considering what we bought -- paying for delivery (tomorrow) was extremely wise. So great, that somebody else is going to take it all up the stairs.
trochee: (Default)
Apropos of my post earlier this week regarding the opportunities for moral reflection in videogames: WorldChanging's Regine DeBatty posts a summary of subversive videogames -- they subvert both the politics and form of videogames.
The main public for these games is neither teenagers nor kids, but adults. Moreover, the rules of these games are not the ones you would encounter in a commercial games: the aim is not to attract as many game addicts during as much time as possible; to captivate with an aesthetics as realist as possible or with the most original design; to attain as much identification to the hero as possible; to be the most competitive on the market; to satisfy the ego of the teenager that still lurks in each of us by killing what moves on the screen... the aim is not to win. The aim is to subvert and parody preconceived ethics and aesthetics; to generate reflection.
Worth a read.
trochee: (law and order)
Also from the Fantagraphics blog: Love and Rockets to appear on Law and Order: Criminal Intent
Curiosity of the day: I just signed a release form for Universal to use issues of LOVE & ROCKETS in an upcoming episode of LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT. Look for it in episode 15, airing sometime later this season. I sign a lot of these release forms for a variety of movies and television programs, but I'm especially curious to know what the context will be for this one.
I'm curious too!
trochee: (resolute)
The Fantagraphics blog points out the latest Tilting at Windmills, which discusses the monopoly-disaster that the comics industry is spiraling into. For those not familiar with the comic publishing world, there is exactly one major distributor (Diamond), which has been slowly squeezing out all the other distributors. Now that it is essentially a monopoly, its service starts to decline, which is actually threatening the comics retailer -- ultimately, the source of Diamond's business! Self-defeating in the usual short-term horizon way. argh.
I have to say that I’m very afraid that the only real solution would be for the Justice Department to reopen their investigation of Diamond (as I understand it, the matter was put into abeyance rather than formally closed), and to break Diamond into two or three competing companies. Otherwise I can’t see how it could even be possible for a new national advance order competitor to get started.

... Heck, checking right now, Diamond doesn’t have a single copy of Maus on hand, in any format. No need to stock the Pulitzer Prize winner, right?

... Diamond has effectively frozen out any chance that any new competitor could enter the market at this stage. Which means that there’s no market forces to encourage Diamond to address their pricing and stocking issues. But if you want to sell comics, you have to deal with Diamond, there’s no way around it.

Seems oddly similar to my experiences with Qwest today -- shoddy website, lousy customer service, but monopoly-driven incentives to the customer to go with their products, even when they're not ideal. Diamond Comics joins Qwest and Microsoft on my list of monopolies to go after when I become Attorney General.
trochee: (night)
[livejournal.com profile] blackwingedboy told me the other day (in discussing the multiple-life-path videogame Fable) that he can't play evil in those games -- like that and Knights of the Old Republic -- where your avatar has the choice to do good or evil, and suffers the consequences. If I characterize his feeling correctly, for him, it feels wrong to pretend in a mock world that "you" are evil, even when there is no "real-" world impact. I thought -- at the time -- that this reflected a deep philosophical perspective on the world akin to Buddhism, in that we cannot truly be sure what world is "real" and what isn't, and [livejournal.com profile] blackwingedboy's discomfort with "pretending evil" struck me as very similar to his behavior in the world: "love, under all circumstances".

How wonderful that today [livejournal.com profile] elwe wrote an elegant post reflecting on those very same questions and their impact and insights into religious life, from a perspective of Christian theology. It's worth following his links, especially this one to a discussion with [livejournal.com profile] aviendha1979 and [livejournal.com profile] ariston, who add additional insights.

I should also take this opportunity to point at [livejournal.com profile] beckyb for [livejournal.com profile] elwe's benefit: she has a PhD in EE (pronunciation modeling!) and an M. Div MTS as well; I think you two might find each other interesting -- even if you don't always agree.

I should maybe add here that I've never played these games: my current opportunities for computer-based evil are limited to excluding others from the cluster (at work) and rolling people up into giant sticky balls of stuff (Katamari Damacy).
trochee: (resolute)
Wow. Johanna Carlson points out that Strangers in Paradise will end on issue #90. Sad but also wonderful that Terry Moore isn't going on forever when he's tired.
trochee: (Default)
Chandler finally goes live to the public.

I may try this out.
trochee: (resolute)
From Lea's entry mentioned in my previous post, I discovered the blog of Colleen Doran (best known as creator of A Distant Soil. though that's ironically not listed in the Comic Book Database). In that blog I found a most marvelous post about her brother's pentagram police-work.
Before the trip, Bro dressed up in his best suit, put on some shades, and picked up a cheap pentagram ring from Spencer’s Gifts because it would look cool to Satan’s Appendage. While the other cops dressed in jeans and baseball caps, Bro’s duds had the desired effect, and Lefty trembled in fear, afraid he was facing one of Satan’s Own Enforcers. (From Colleen's blog)
trochee: (angry)
The comics industry and "blogosphere" is getting a bit of a shakeup as it enters the second half of the 20th century: finally, the shit has hit the fan and the industry's troglodytic sexism has finally been scooted out from under the stove. (It is currently -- metaphorically speaking -- ugly and unbowed in the middle of the kitchen floor.)
Lea Hernandez does a rundown.
trochee: (pedant)
Bill Poser points out an absurdly wrong use of Mathematica, when Perl (or egrep) would really be a much more appropriate choice.
trochee: (resolute)
Look!.

Also, an right-on rant pointing out that Ged still isn't brown.

(whoops, this was supposed to go in [livejournal.com profile] emerald_citizen. Now it's cross-posted.)
trochee: (pedant)
I don't use Windows, but reliable sources suggest that the recent vulnerability in XP is very serious. Please, patch your systems.

aaaaargh.

Dec. 30th, 2005 03:02 pm
trochee: (angry)
yanked from [livejournal.com profile] tsenft and [livejournal.com profile] debunkingwhite: [livejournal.com profile] wespeakenglish.

aaaaaaaa. as [livejournal.com profile] tsenft said: "this is why they hate us."

I want to smack every single person on that community.
trochee: (resolute)
I've just joined the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Can't figure out why I didn't before.

Read their Deep Links and miniLinks updates, and join them, especially if you're sitting on some extra cash -- they're a valuable force for protecting the digital rights of everyday people. Their outrage at the latest Diebold scandal is right on the money.

Also they're going to send me a cool hat.
trochee: (resolute)
okay, it's starting to piss me off.

many have noted the difference in captioning between pictures of white people taking food from grocery stores in New Orleans [finding] and pictures of black people doing the same thing [looting].

In every dialog I've read, somebody jumps in to point out that the captions were written by different people, and some of them were from AP, and some were from AFP, or derail the conversation ("how brave the TV crews are"," "I contest the race of the participants", "It's all the media's fault", "perhaps it was an honest mistake").
The most offensive responses from defensive white folks run along the lines of "OMG how dare you [point out racism/write a letter]; it's talking about race that keeps racism alive", "unless Black folk explain why they [didn't leave town/stole beer] we can't call it racism" -- note that POC have to explain the actions of all POC in this one.

But none of these "explanations" [note scare quotes] hold water. [fuck off, I'm too irritated to find a better metaphor.]

Why the hell is there so much resistance from snotty whitefolk to the possibility that there is racism here? Lord knows, we don't have a race problem in this country and I don't know what people are thinking, casting aspersions like this. [/sarcasm] As these show, it doesn't matter who wrote them, it's still part of the institution. And it's not even accurate to attribute it to AP vs. AFP.

To repeat myself from a locked discussion: It can be institutionalized racism, without anybody ever having the thought "I dislike/don't trust/hate black people." That only the snarky bloggers noticed it, and it goes unnoticed and/or excused by white folks, is what makes it racism.

If the captions were reversed, us white folks would have noticed. AFP vs AP is a difference, but why do we need to stretch so far? This stuff is part of a culture-wide institutional assumption of guilt for POC [er, people-of-color] and assumption of innocence for white folks. Let's acknowledge it and stop fucking trying to explain it away.

I think I'm going to resubscribe to [livejournal.com profile] debunkingwhite.
trochee: (resolute)
I am reminded by a friend (in a locked entry) of how great is the Peggy McIntosh essay White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack. Read the whole essay here [or PDF]. Some of the most thought-provoking parts:
I did not see myself as a racist because I was taught to recognize racism only in individual acts of meanness by members of my group, never in invisible systems conferring unsought racial dominance on my group from birth. )
Sad but true that this is just as relevant as it was in 1988. No progress yet, as far as I can see; even more headway into this particular delusion. And of course the same things can be said for being male, masculine-presenting, straight, anglophone, and born into an educated upper/middle-class family. [and right-handed too, as [livejournal.com profile] _dkg_ might point out.]

And it seems particularly relevant in discussions like this one or this one when we consider what it means to be car-less, power-less, and hungry and thirsty in New Orleans this week.

[Update: This Alternet article was recently posted on the same subject (found via [livejournal.com profile] debunkingwhite). The comments from "liberals" reading an unashamedly left website and still resisting the thought that white people have responsibility for racism make me nauseous.]

trochee: (Default)
Cat and Girl: Outdoor activities )

I wish this activity really was outdoors.
and okay, Cat's motivation is not really my motivation. I'm already there.
trochee: (resolute)
I have nothing to add to what [livejournal.com profile] slit said here.
trochee: (silly)
[livejournal.com profile] _dkg_, among others, will appreciate this.

Thank you [livejournal.com profile] isolt for the link.
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