Friday, December 28, 2007
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Thanks Bro, your Chia Pet is in the mail (not really).
Happy Holidays Everyone.
Extraiga Hasta La Ultima Gota.
And hang on to your main squeeze.
I'm not letting go of mine, cause she's sweet.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
In the air
Sings a lonely song
But the birds were anarchists
Ignoring what is required for success
While I am stuck on the ground
Walking through dark shadows like sticky mud puddles
Chaotic avian chorus rippling the surface recently trod upon
What does it mean, this migration of foot and wing?
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
The real message is that you need to buy lots of stuff (X-mas is just the seasonal excuse) to fulfill your role in society as a consumer.
Obey Santa, Comrade Consumer.
*Unless you would like to try and play some other role in society...
Monday, December 10, 2007
I'm sure most people heard about the flooding in Washington last week. Just in case I haven't talked to you personally (and many friends and family called to make sure we were okay) The Lazy Jay Ranch (my house) was untouched by the floods. My place of business was untouched as well. Evelyn had to delay visiting some properties, but that was just inconvenient not real trouble. We were very, very lucky. But many people who live south of Seattle were not so lucky. They say it was the second rainiest day in Washington ever--over 5 inches of water in one day. And it fell on top of recent snow, so it was a double punch. Interstate 5 between Olympia and Portland was closed all week. (That is I-5 in the top picture.) Lots of people are experiencing Katrina Northwest style right now. And many of them had just rebuilt after last year's floods.
So thanks for checking in to see if we were okay. We are. But it has been hard on our neighbors. And we feel pretty lucky here in Arlington.
Robot has hidden his aspect
Deep in the gears of the
Wall Street Establishment
Buy, Buy, Sell, Sell
His anodized metal wheels
The ones with the cool spinners
Grind the street children
Into the grimy gutters
But look at that bottom line!
He cries out with false cheer
As he flashes stock prices on his
Web Linked L. E. D.s
Ticker tape is so 20th Century
In this global E-con-o-my
But I can’t help but think
Despite the busty wiggle of the
Untouchable marketing babes
That the Market’s bottom line
Does not account for things
That hold real value
For real people
Like Empathy: Market Value $0.00
Compassion: Market Value $0.00
Companionship: Market Value $0.00
Mutual Understanding: Market Value $0.00
Peace: Market Value $0.00
But the market can give you a great price
On a variety of valuable Mutual Funds
Invested in “Defense” Industries
(that means war, wink, wink,)
If you are willing to trade your
And your generally bomb and bullet free environment
To the Capitalists that own the Market
They set the terms and the prices
All you contribute is the labor and the commodities
Then you buy what you need back from the Market
Minus a nominal service fee…
It’s all in the con-tract
Sorry Robot, my valuables are worth more
Than can be accounted for in your system
I’d rather be the Rabbit that escaped from
Daddy War Buck’s Top Hat
Than a vulture picking over the
Bones of a Bull Market
Friday, December 07, 2007
What is your angle?
I can’t get a good read.
I’m sure I could figure you out
If not by the numbers.
I Give Up
Have we come full circle?
I can’t get my bearings.
I’m sure you could take me out
I’m not in prime shape.
Thursday, December 06, 2007
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
Does it take to tie a bell on Schrodinger’s cat?
Aziraphale has lost his sword
But he is willing to take dancing lessons.
You are a dead ringer for the unobservable feline
Irreversibly keeping time with seraphic grace
All the while avoiding a collapse into objectivity.
Twenty-Three or Forty-Two?
Your stitch makes time for thee and ewe
But I won’t pull wool over your eye
Or your camel’s.
Tuesday, December 04, 2007
We are in a period of prosperity courtesy of a fortunate congruence of Japan flushing the world with cheap money, China putting pressure on commodity prices and Australia's full adoption of economic rationalism.
By fortunate congruence, Facilities Management has embarked upon developing a Campus Master Plan that demands a joining of the academic requirements to the physical construct.
The last time we had this fortunate congruence was five years ago, when we again held the summer party on my birthday.
For the time being there is a fortunate congruence between management policy and a broad ethical principle that recognises the autonomy of employees.
Extra bonus activity: Look up the term ‘congruence’ and write your own definition and give an example from personal experience as a posting in your blog, be ready to discuss this term next class.
Monday, December 03, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
What you’re looking for is someone to blame.
Go hire some contractors and throw problems at them.
Bury them in memos.
Make sure the sensitive stuff is in there,
Buried between all the obviously worthless junk.
Then when the wolves kick down the door,
Pull out the emails and the transcripts
Proving that the consultants where aware and in charge.
You are just the hapless figure head.
You are not involved in day-to-day activities.
The contractors acted independently.
You had no knowledge of their methods.
It will work.
Just don’t put my name on the purchase order.
You want some more coffee?
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Me: Nor are they stone knives or bear skins.
Mike: You don’t get it! Every conversation is what I am trying to say.
Me: Don’t get upset.
Mike: Let me explain exactly what I am talking about. If we were Zen monks, our random conversations and blog entries would be seen as profound insight into the nature of reality.
Me: But we aren’t Zen monks. We create software so that companies can sell people things.
Mike: Right, exactly. So nobody thinks it is profound. Nobody looks for enlightenment in our playful banter and our obscure references to 80’s pop music lyrics.
Me: So…We don’t have to live like a refugee?
Mike: Exactly. Tom Petty has to live like a refugee. But we use a keyboard and a mouse.
Me: Instead of rocks and sticks?
Me: Zen monks used pen and ink. Not rocks and sticks.
Mike: You don’t get it!
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Now brace yourself for Black Friday and the beginning of the Christmas Shopping Season.
Friday is also Buy Nothing Day, an event Adbusters started many years ago.
It's easy to participate. Just buy nothing on Friday after Thanksgiving.
I also saw that Reverend Billy has a new movie coming out, What Would Jesus Buy?
I'm looking forward to it.
Monday, November 19, 2007
I read a few reviews this morning; and many of them criticize the author for not delivering more answers about the nature of the world. But I feel Lake properly sets course by the strength of the questions being explored. Hethor discovers much about the world and himself by trusting in his questions, and the reader can discover much as well.
Mainspring is a lovely little fairly tale adventure that does not require thousands of pages or multiple volumes to cast its spell. If you have a spare evening or two, pick up Mainspring.
Friday, November 16, 2007
You really should read it
Contains only the truth
And wise insight
In equal measure
I have a new song
You really should hear it
Used only the good notes
And minor chords
In equal measure
I have a new suit
You really should see it
And stylish cut
In equal measure
I have a new dance
You really should try it
Like stepping on bugs
With stiletto boots
Equally hard to measure
Draw my bath
And turn down the bed
Friend of mine
Knock on wood
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
But I am afraid that it cannot.
It looks harmless enough at first glance.
I found it in the back of the Smithsonian Magazine.
I was drinking coffee.
Which is not my story, but is of an advertisement of an island in the kitchen.
But the more I read the advertisement the more confused I became.
Was the writer just incompetent?
Was it poorly translated from another language, Martian for instance?
Was it a secret coded message?
How are you supposed to order one? There is only a PO Box number.
And the city name is misspelled “Woostock, IL”.
I checked, there is a Woodstock, IL in the 60098 zip code, but no Woostock.
Maybe it is some kind of performance art or parody?
When I was a kid Mad and National Lampoon used to have fake advertisements. I remember one fake ad specifically, “Enlarge the most manly part of your anatomy with this gravity powered device…”
Which is not my story, but is of an advertisement of an island in the kitchen.
Please read the ad. Click on the picture to see a larger version.
I invite you to relish the use of “etc.” in the very first sentence.
Marvel at the “penurious necessity” of this device.
Gasp in awe as the great Julia Child demonstrates “a method of grinding.”
No longer must you wonder where to put your “elongated cooking equipment.”
And best of all, “The height is high (40”), limiting the need to bending over or stooping.”
If only I could have this advertisement engraved in “granite, marble, limestone, stainless concrete, stainless steel, pine planks, or soapstone, etc., the weight of the top is essential.”
Monday, November 12, 2007
When Frank’s son, Brian, began writing prequels I read them. It was interesting to revisit some of Frank’s places and characters. But Brian’s Dune books were never as good, never as fantastic. So when Brian announced that he had discovered Frank Herbert’s original outline for Dune 7 I was intrigued and worried. I wanted to know how Frank planned on finishing his story. But I also knew Brian would never pull it off as well as his dad.
Well, Dune 7 came out, over two years as two volumes, Hunters of Dune and Sandworms of Dune. I read them. I’m glad I did. But I am also disappointed in a way. There are events in the books that I know Frank would have made thrilling and intense, but Brian only makes it work. Reading Dune 7 wasn’t like reading a Frank Herbert novel in the same way that reading a screenplay is not the same thing as watching a great movie. I feel like I read an outline for Dune 7. Which is better than nothing. Sort of.
The series has its happy ending now. I would hope that Brian would let it go. But I know he won’t. There are too many Dune fans like me that keep buying his derivative work out of morbid curiosity. So I bet there is a “new” Dune book by next summer. The spice must flow… Maybe Frank will return as a blind prophet to decry what his decedents have done with his mighty empire.
Friday, November 09, 2007
Avoid what they convey
Take my advice on this
Always do what I say
Your questions never stop
My nerves begin to fray
Stop vocalizing now
Always do what I say
Tempests in my teapot
The earl is turning gray
Graffiti makes fine wallpaper
It’s Jay you must Obey
Thursday, November 08, 2007
Do we call them she?
I tell her I don't have time
I tell her I am busy at work
She won't leave me alone
She threatens to follow me home
I'll do something with you tomorrow
I won't forget
But I get busy once again
And she sits pouting in the corner
She won't leave me alone
She wants me to write her a poem
She wants me to talk politics
So here I am
Are you happy now?
The blog ship curls her lip
She won't leave me alone
Monday, November 05, 2007
The company I work for created a promotional video. Many other people did most of the work on this, especially Brett Birdsong, but I helped storyboard the idea and provided the music, Thunder Echo style. And I composed the Versatile Audio Logo which plays at the very end of the video. See how I got you to watch the whole thing just to hear four notes played on my Absynth synthesizer.
The whole V-Ball concept was recently showcased at the WWFE Show in Chicago last month. Check it out!
That is enough corporate promotion for now.
Sunday, November 04, 2007
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Wednesday, October 31, 2007
I am of two minds about it.
On the one hand it is kind of interesting
watching his internal dialog
the give and take of his mind
wrestling with itself
On the other hand it is kind of psychotic
Like he is crazy or something
Next thing we know he will be
Wearing a dress and calling himself
At least he likes to read my blog
So shut up already
Yeah, quit acting like you don't talk
To yourself all the time
I know we do.
Friday, October 19, 2007
I believe in books
I believe in absurdity
But not with certainty
I’d rather ride a bicycle
Than believe in one next door
I’d rather read a thousand books
Than believe in only one
Or two or three
I’d rather fully experience me
Than try to believe in thee
Perhaps god will have the grace
To absolve us of our certainty
Or perhaps she enjoys too much
The never ending punch line
Of human true belief
Monday, October 15, 2007
4 hours on the phone with the multi-million dollar client from Florida reviewing functional specifications. And we have 4 more hours scheduled on the phone for tomorrow. And they want to know if I can have their work estimates done by Wednesday (the day after tomorrow) even though we have not agreed on the scope of work yet. Short Answer: NO.
2 hours spent talking to potential clients. Kissy, Kissy, Kissy.
1 hour spent reassuring my VP that the Florida account is going well.
1 hour spent interviewing for an Assistant because I am overworked. This has a special ironic aspect: I'm super busy, so I need someone to help me, which means I have to add more tasks to my day to interview people, thereby making me more busy.
I know some people thrive in a super busy work environment, but I need a little space to breathe and ponder things. I'm always afraid I have forgotten something important when the day whizzes past so swiftly.
But at least I got the lawn and pasture mowed yesterday. I think yesterday may have been the last sunny day we get around here for a while. Fall has fallen with a wet soggy thump. But the leaves are beautiful red and yellow and no storms have blown them all away yet. I am hoping that the nights will freeze so that the grass will stop growing and I won't have to worry about it again until Easter.
Oh well, my phone is ringing. Farewell Blog Space, Hello Office Space.
Friday, October 12, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I could tell you heart rending tales of job-related stress, illness and complicated personal issues, but those would just be excuses and would not heal the wounds my bloggitty absence has caused you, my blogerific blogite buddies. So I have been trying to think of what to offer you as a bloggy good peace offering, but then I just wasted a few days not knowing what to post, because you only deserve the best.
So I humbly offer the following and ask for your forblogness for my long blog silence:
Fluffy Mackerel Pudding from Candyboots.com.
Because mackerel was good, but it was never fluffy enough. But now it's pudding, with all that implies. And to top it all off it has egg slices as a garnish. Fish has never been so convenient.
Check out the entire set of Vintage Weight Watchers Recipe Cards at http://www.candyboots.com/ They are hilarious. I laughed until I cried. (Not that I want you to cry.) But Weight Watchers really knows how to set an inviting table, 1974 style. So Blog Apatite, my retro friends. I hope you enjoy and nothing says "I love you" like an offering of food, 33-year old food, but food.
See you soon...
Wednesday, September 26, 2007
San Diego's Mayor not only admits that there are homosexuals in San Diego, he has changed his mind and decided to support everyone's right to get married.
Maybe old dogs can learn new tricks.
It is refreshing to see a politician with a genuine emotional attachement to an issue.
It is even more refreshing to see a political mind that is open to change and not clinging to useless relics of the past. I hope his conservitive constituates will see this for genuine growth and a commitment to compasion and equality. But I have a feeling that the GOP in San Diego will punish this brave man for publicly stating what so many of them must secretly be thinking.
How about it Dick Cheney? Are willing to support the Mayor of San Diego?
Friday, September 07, 2007
Thursday, September 06, 2007
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Real change starts with being honest -- the system in Washington is rigged and our government is broken. It's rigged by greedy corporate powers to protect corporate profits. It's rigged by the very wealthy to ensure they become even wealthier. At the end of the day, it's rigged by all those who benefit from the established order of things. For them, more of the same means more money and more power. They'll do anything they can to keep things just the way they are -- not for the country, but for themselves.
Politicians who care more about their careers than their constituents go along to get elected. They make easy promises to voters instead of challenging them to take responsibility for our country. And then they compromise even those promises to keep the lobbyists happy and the contributions coming.
Instead of serving the people and the nation, too many play the parlor game of Washington -- trading favors and campaign money, influencing votes and compromising legislation. It's a game that never ends, but every American knows -- it's time to end the game.
And it's time for the Democratic Party -- the party of the people -- to end it.
The choice for our party could not be more clear. We cannot replace a group of corporate Republicans with a group of corporate Democrats, just swapping the Washington insiders of one party for the Washington insiders of the other.
The American people deserve to know that their presidency is not for sale, the Lincoln Bedroom is not for rent, and lobbyist money can no longer influence policy in the House or the Senate.
It's time to end the game. It's time to tell the big corporations and the lobbyists who have been running things for too long that their time is over. It's time to challenge politicians to put the American people's interests ahead of their own calculated political interests, to look the lobbyists in the eye and just say no.
And it's time for the American people to take responsibility for our government -- for in our democracy it is truly ours. If we have come to mistrust and question it, it is because we were not vigilant against the forces that have taken it from us. That their game has played on for so long is the fault of each of us -- ending the game and returning government of the people to the people is the responsibility of all of us.
But cleaning up Washington isn't enough. If we are going to meet the challenges we face and prevail over them, two principles must guide us -- yes, we must end the Washington game, but we must also think as big as the challenges we face. Our ideas must be bold enough to succeed and our government must be free to enact them without compromising principle or sacrificing results.
One without the other isn't good enough. All the big ideas in the world won't make a difference if they have to go through this broken system that remains controlled by big business and their lobbyists. And if we fix the system, but aren't honest with the American people about the scope of our challenges and what's required of each of us to meet them, then we'll be left with the baby steps and incremental measures that are Washington's poor excuse for progress.
As Bobby Kennedy said, "If we fail to dare, if we do not try, the next generation will harvest the fruit of our indifference; a world we did not want, a world we did not choose, but a world we could have made better by caring more for the results of our labors."
But if we do both -- if we have the courage to offer real change and the determination to change Washington -- then we will be build the One America we dream of, where every man, woman and child is blessed with the same, great opportunity and held to the same, just rules.
But let me tell you one thing I have learned from my experience -- you cannot deal with them on their terms. You cannot play by their rules, sit at their table, or give them a seat at yours. They will not give up their power -- you have to take it from them.
We cannot triangulate our way to real change. We cannot compromise our way to real change. But we can lead to real change. And we can start today.
Nearly ten years ago, I made the decision that I would never take a dime from a Washington lobbyist -- I wasn't going to work for them, and I didn't want their money.
Because in the courtroom, when you present your case to the jury, you can offer facts and evidence, you can argue your heart out -- and I have -- but the one thing you can't do, is pay the jury. We call that a bribe. But in Washington when an oil lobbyist gives money to office holders to influence our energy policy, they call it politics. That's exactly what's wrong with this system.
Money flies like lightning between corporations, lobbyists, and politicians. We need full public financing to reform the system once and for all. But we don't need to wait to reform our party. Two weeks ago, I called on all Democrats to reject contributions from federal lobbyists. To tell them -- we know that you give money to influence politicians on behalf of your corporate clients. Well, we're not going to take it anymore. Your money's no good here.
I repeat that challenge today. Let's show America exactly whose side we're on. We can reform our party and truly be the party of the people. And we can expose for all time who the Republicans in Washington are really working for.
There are 60 lobbyists in Washington for every member of Congress. The big corporations don't need another president that looks out for them -- they've got all the power they need. I want to be the people's president.
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Strikes beyond, beneath, beyond me
Sometimes there lies within me
Strident bellows lie, cry, lie within me
Give me your full attention
Simple but not easy
Samples of not what is, but could be
Sometimes a word or phrase disarms me
Strips, tears, bares me
Carlos, Bruce and Francis unite
Strangers all, intimately embraced before me
Your teachers and me...the same
Sometimes our sameness strikes me
Credits: Poem by Jay Larsen
Inspired by "The Art of Reality" by Bruce Wagner, in the Fall 2007 issue of Tricycle Magazine, where in Bruce talks about his teacher Carlos Castaneda, and the article is accompanied by a painting by Francis Picabia, "Geai bleu" (which is displayed above).
Friday, August 24, 2007
Fox News must have their talking points memo from the White House, because they are acting like war with Iran is a done deal. Just like they did with Iraq in 2002 and 2003.
Some people, like Ray McGovern, say that Rove and Snow are bailing out because they lost the argument about Iran to Dick Cheney.
We cannot afford another war in the Middle East.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
It is hard to be too full of myself
When I am taking a shit
I only meditate when people are watching
Why go to all that effort of maintaining posture
If no one is going to see it
I only meditate when life is hectic
If you can’t maintain attention when life is buzzing
What good is attention?
I only meditate when I am alone
Then I can’t blame others for my distractions
And I have to own them all
I only meditate while watching TV
My inner observer traces the plot lines
And guides me through the ten-thousand channels
I only meditate on holy days
Because there is no reason to waste
Awareness on unholy things
I only meditate on emptiness
Because it is impossible to describe
Yet sounds so profound when I expound
I only meditate on Wednesdays
Hump days are so mundane and boring
The middle of the week needs some holiness
I only meditate while breathing
Because awareness is life
And life is worth living
I only meditate
São Paulo: A City Without AdsFrom Adbusters #73, Aug-Sep 2007
"In 2007, the world’s fourth-largest metropolis and Brazil’s most important city, São Paulo, became the first city outside of the communist world to put into effect a radical, near-complete ban on outdoor advertising. "