'90s Anecdote Generator

I was
  • trying to get away from a scientologist
  • eating at a Hare Krishna joint
  • having a dinner party
  • reading about lipstick lesbianism
  • drinking chai at a warehouse party

  • that early raver
  • that sometime corporate lawyer
  • that drug dealer in school
  • that 'wigga' kid
  • that grunge band

who I haven't seen since they joined a
  • church
  • defence force
  • university
  • public service
  • gym

  • a porno got stuck in the VCR
  • they found a heavy metal t-shirt in the couch
  • we heard Kurt Cobain had died and started crying
  • 'heroin chic' was fashion
  • I saw a laserdisc

and they said
  • "Eat my shorts"
  • "I'd buy that for a dollar"
  • "Not that there's anything wrong with that"
  • "The Truth is out there"
  • "Not!"

  • they dropped their video store card
  • they told me they rollerbladed
  • a nearby payphone rang
  • I found a $2 note
  • my floppy broke

More passion for music

Clever clip, kinda picks up on an earlier post about the passion of musicians.

The Blue Nun in Piskor's Wizzywig

Had a chuckle while nearing the end of Ed Piskor's Wizzywig last night when I spotted this quote from a sample used on the Beastie Boys' Check Your Head -- my favourite of their albums for the way it mixes up their interests in punk, hiphop, Buddhism, etc.

The quote appears in the interlude track The Blue Nun, which samples On Wine: How To Select and Serve by Peter M. F. Sichel and Sondra Bianca. Found this short interview with Sichel while looking for the track on Youtube just now.

Ed Piskor is currently preparing a comic on the history of hiphop.

Craig Thompson's Blankets

Having been impressed with Habibi, I moved straight onto Thompson's earlier work Blankets.

It's a sentimental story about young love but I found it interesting as a way to get a sense of what motivated Thompson to create Habibi, assuming it's semi-autobiographical. There's a similar story of unrequited love, references to a religious text and many wry observations beautifully drawn.

The style of the drawing is a bit different than Habibi, a bit more Charles Burns maybe. Dunno, that's not really a fair comparison since Burns has a very different aesthetic, like the dreaminess in the following panel would probably involve insects.

Work Nude Day

Today is Work Nude Day, which is great because it's supposed to get to 30C degrees.

Craig Thompson's Habibi

Just finished reading Craig Thompson's book Habibi and I think it might be the best book I've read this year. It's one of the few where I wished it wouldn't finish and there was a richness to it that really elevated the graphic novel form.

The story follows the lives of two former slaves, one a girl forced into marriage and the other a boy. Their relationship becomes complicated, they're torn apart and find each other again -- yeah, I'm trying to avoid spoilers here so let's settle on it being an epic love story of sorts.

It's set somewhere in a timeless Middle East and I was quite conscious of the 'orientalism' in the representation of Arabian culture but in many ways the book seems a response to 9/11 and the fear of Muslims which followed and it's written by an American who is trying to help others understand an old culture. The book isn't really about any of these themes but that's the context in which it appears I guess.

This interview with Thompson is a great read after the book because he faces orientalism and other arguments while explaining his motivations and interest in the story.

The storytelling is great, particularly the way Thompson develops the lead female character Dodola, and the discussion of the Qur’an and calligraphy. All of these threads are woven together with the most awesome artwork and it reminded me of this panel from another great graphic novel Alice In Sunderland about the way that comics are actually richer than many texts through using multiple forms of representation.

Do yourself a favour and buy a copy of the book. I'm surprised to find it can be delivered worldwide for less than $30AUD and am resisting the urge to buy a heap of copies for friends and family this month.

Floppy mail

One of my banks has started sending out entertaining direct mail marketing, which isn't normally the sort of thing I condone but I've started opening their envelopes to see what they're up to.

Today this package made to look like a floppy disk arrived and I marveled at the embossing used to create the look of the disk. Shame to see them waste so much money posting this crap out to people but I guess it succeeded in interesting me for a few minutes.

Jimmy's End

As a fan of Alan Moore I feel obligated to share this new work. It's very Lynchian but features many of Moore's preoccupations, like the tarot. Great design and lighting, it's moody and menacing.

Another self-congratulatory blog post

Wow, seems like only earlier this year I was posting about my 500th entry here. This is the 600th.

Goatse hairstyle

Freaky Japanese girl with a Goatse haircut.


FACEBOOK - just stop it. Stop it.
We've been through enough: Facebook ads, Timeline, an overhaul of the DM system, friends with endless streams of baby and CrossFit updates.
And now this - the Facebook couples page.
Before you start pointing the finger at your loved-up friends, it's happened already. It's not a choice, it just is.
If you a) have a Facebook account and b) are listed in a relationship with your Facebook-account-owning paramour then you have a c) Facebook couples page.
Don't believe us? Log into Facebook, then type 'facebook.com/us' into your browser.
The horrifying result is a scrapbook of every status, photo, interest and mutual friend you share.
How cute disgusting.

This News Limited article was my introduction to Facebook's new 'us' pages for couples and at first I thought it was a bit much to have the leading social media site collecting my correspondence with my partner.

Then I remembered how incensed I used to feel about every new feature they introduced. So I got over it.

Because once I'm over the fact something is new and therefore different -- like 'How dare they change?'! -- it isn't a big deal and sometimes it's even helpful.

Just last night I found myself typing in facebook.com/us to find a link I'd left for my better half and it made me realise this is actually going to be very useful. I won't have to trawl through the posts on my partner's page, feeling like a cyberstalker, everytime I want to find something we've shared online.

And, of course I should've remembered, News Limited love attacking Facebook because they hate social networks after losing squillions on MySpace.

Foley style

Another great pop single this year is PSY's Gangnam Style and, while my kids have been crazy about it, I much prefer this interpretation of the video by a foley artist.

My kids like this Sponge Bob version:

Call me maybe

Beaut unofficial filmclip using chat roulette for Carly Rae Jepsen's pop tune, which some are picking as the single of the year.

Mixed response

'Tis nearing the season and -- WOW! -- I'm surprised at the mixed response to Christmas in my Facebook feed this morning.

One second a day

One of my TV Production alumni put this video he's developing on Facebook earlier today and I think it's cool.

For 100 Years in The Irrigator

My local newspaper The Irrigator has a great pic with their article on my exhibition at The Roxy Art Space this month. Read about the For 100 Years multimedia exhibition at their site.

I seem to have given the newspaper the wrong link to the album For 100 Years and the EP of remixes And Another 100 Years, click on these titles to find them.

WeiZen Ho at Uncovered

Recently I've been working on the video I shot at Uncovered:uncovered, the night of short performance curated by The CAD Factory at Wagga Art Gallery in September. One of many highlights was WeiZen Ho and you can see a couple of her contributions in this video.

Son of the Southern Cross

My partner has had this flier on the fridge for most of the year. I think it arrived a week or so after this Ned Kelly replica knife flier.

It only came down because I was sick of people asking if I was buying one.

She likes the copywriting and phrases like "authentic reproduction" are quite funny when you think about them. The notion that this ring is "one symbol a man can rely on" is also silly -- I think I'd prefer to rely on my debit card!

Galactic mash-up

Thinking of stars here's a mash-up made using a video by NASA and a tune by Antonio Sanciolo, who tells me this was the imagery he had in mind when he wrote the song. The idea to merge the two was a direction from BoingBoing.net


While I had a laugh at the above graphic when I first saw it appear in my Facebook feed, I actually quite enjoy horoscopes.

It's not so much that I believe in them as being accurate predictions of what the future holds, although there have been many times when I've found them to present details that eventuated.

And it's not the idea that the movement of astral bodies moves our own bodies because the moon moves the ocean and we're mostly made of water.

What I like about horoscopes is the short-hand they provide for talking about personalities, character traits and generally providing a sense of narrative in my life.

Yeah, it can be silly but so can life and I like the way it'll sometimes force me to reconsider my views or offer an alternate way of interpreting an event.

Not getting into this barney

Few pics from my exhibition

And Another 100 Years

Foreking business

Funny name for this business, wonder how they answer the phone?

Small video big pleasure

The Cad Factory artists Vic and Sarah McEwan have collaborated with local students from the Greater Kengal Small Schools Network to create a unique and cutting edge contemporary performance event on Friday 26 October at the Tootool Silo.

One highlight of working on the CAD Factory's recent production was seeing my footage of the Small Voices Made Loud... rehearsal used on the local news.

Bee hind

Out now!

You should look for my interview in the October issue of Audio Technology.

Or you can read it on your tablet FREE at www.audiotechnology.com.au/tablet

Self-control setting

Yay! Finally found my self-control

Bloke Peas

My friends' Enemy

Here's a clip from my friends Heaven the Axe, who are a seriously hard rocking group now based in Melbourne but were formerly an acoustic duo in Wagga Wagga who gave me a lot of support, including playing at the launch of my first Bassling LP SHAKES -- see a pic here.

Technological mandala

I like this mandala by Leonardo Ulian.

Buicklayers line

Pretty sure this is meant to be bricklayers line but maybe there are perverts out there who like to be tied to old cars with pink string!

Coming soon to a silo near me

A video I shot with kids from Yerong Creek Primary will be shown as part of this night of short performances, which I'll also be capturing on video. Yep, I'll shoot a video of my video -- how postmodern is that?!

Great Presets remix

Think I like this more than the original, which was also my experience with the Green Velvet remix of their last single.

Got a copy of a book

Every family has their eccentricities but mine has more than its share. And they also love books.

At the end of last century when I finished university, my aunt gave me her copy of Herman Hesse's Magister Ludi. And I mean her copy -- she'd actually photocopied the book and had it bound.

Actually it kinda makes me want to read the book, since it's obviously something my aunt enjoyed enough to arrange her own copy at a time when it wasn't easy to secure one.

Tinkler SNAP!

It's digital

Do it for the fun!

What a thrill to spend your spare time actually building your own color TV!

Channel numbers that flash right on the the screen!

An on-screen digital clock!

Home entertainment electronics and digital circuitry that could lead to extra income, full or part-time.

If this weren't an advert in Playboy from the '70s, I might actually feel sorry for the girlfriend pictured above who looks like she has little to do aside from making coffee -- which I gather is a euphemism.

Recent workshop at Narrandera Library

The video workshop at Narrandera Library went well with eight attending. There was a lot of interest in digital photo manipulation, so I'm hoping to offer an introduction to free software because it'd be a great way for people to learn techniques and they could walk away with the tools to keep going.

The picture above comes from the Narrandera Argus, who also ran an article about my album and upcoming exhibition. Is it a fashion faux pas that I'm wearing the same outfit in both my photographs in that edition?

Portrait from Burning Seed

Almost forgot about this beaut portrait I was given by Sophie, who might've been about 10 years old. She hung out with my daughter and we made a few trips around the site together, dancing at the Alien Welcoming Committee and playing drums at Trash Mansion.

I was stoked to get this portrait because my hair was looking very good that day!

More Burning Seed

One of the ideas that's been on my mind since Burning Seed is the potential for the event to be a rite of passage.

Rites of passage are thought to be a part of socialisation, combining an event with a process of conveying a fundamental concept about the society in which it operates. Arnold van Gennep described rites of passage as having three phases, including a pre-liminal phase (separation), a liminal phase (transition), and a post-liminal phase (reincorporation).

Burning Seed obviously has the part where people are separated, through the camping at a ticketed event. I think the principles of the event, which I discussed earlier, convey a number of interesting experiences around the sense that an individual has a talent distinctly their own which they can offer -- and this might be a liminal phase.

However, I feel the reincorporation aspect as people leave the event and return to their everyday lives needs something to underline the insights gained from Burning Seed. I've got some ideas and wonder whether it would be possible to give a more meaningful and sustained experience from attending.

Scared of magpies

Burning Seed

The following review was published in the Narrandera Argus on 4 October 2012

Matong State Forest was once again the venue for the Burning Seed festival, which ran from 26 September to 2 October.

Burning Seed is the Australian version of Burning Man, the famous US festival which creates a temporary city in the Nevada desert. While it sometimes looks and frequently sounds like a music concert, the principles of the event distinguish it from almost everything else on the calendar except the best bits of Christmas, Clean Up Australia Day and Guy Fawkes Night.

The 10 principles of Burning Man focus participants on being good citizens of a short-lived community, united by common ideals rather than a common taste in music like most festivals. The music being played at the various theme camps was eclectic, from acoustic percussion through to blues and folk and, of course, the penetrating 'doof' of electronic dance music, ranging from slow dubstep through to funky house and pummeling psy-trance.

The principles shape the event into something special. For example, the principle of leaving no trace means that Burning Seed is unique in being held within a NSW state forest. Quite an achievement when you consider the focus on fire. This year the organisers consulted with the Rural Fire Service to set a date before harvest and the fire risk season.

Other principles include "radical self-expression," "radical inclusion" and "radical self-reliance" and these mean the event is, well, pretty radical. There are outrageous outfits and, for a few, no outfits at all. For some clothing was optional but for many others it was an opportunity to dazzle.

The principle of decommodification is also wild. None of the theme camp bars, food vendors or brewers of tea and ale would accept money for their goods. There were workshops in a wide range of arts and interests but there was a potency in the idea of gifting that meant that once you received a gift, you felt obligated to share your skills or talent with the greater community. It fostered a feeling of good will that was infectious, with participants actively seeking opportunities to share.

This "experiment in temporary community" used the principles in such a way to create a sense of social cohesion while encouraging self-identity and it was extremely effective. Many were attending their second or third Burning Seed and spoke of how each event saw more and more open tents or people bringing something new. Every spectator was given opportunity to perform and, with only a few hundred people, you began to see how people found roles over the weekend.

One bloke I met explained he'd picked up a hitchhiker the day before and been given a ticket to the festival. He was already planning to attend in 2013 with his daughter because he thought it was important to her education. That weekend he spent a lot of time ensuring the communal fireplace didn't go out and put on a reptile show for the Kids Camp, which probably flouted the no pets rule but was very popular.

A couple of locals from Matong enthused about Burning Seed but were concerned that people in the area didn't understand the philosophy behind the event. They observed that some local visitors had left empty beer cans on the ground rather than leaving no trace. Unless you take the time to read the principles, then it must be bewildering for some residents to understand why people travel from all over Australia to a party amongst their Cypress Pine.

Obviously burning stuff appeals to a lot of these people and the burning of the man on the Saturday (or 'roo this year) and the Temple on the Sunday, as well as all the fire twirling and incendiary sculptures almost make fire a headline feature. They are spectacular blazes but to my mind Burning Seed doesn't really have a headline act or attraction, it brings out the best in those attending. Which is why I'll be going back in 2013 and, if you're game, you should too.

No tales

Hadn't noticed my youngest had his toenails painted to look like mine. It's an interesting contrast, the two feet of different ages with chipped blue polish.

I'd saved the file as 'Chips off the old blocks' but keep wondering about the symbolism. My nails were blue to gauge a process of developing apathy about a subject that felt sore. It says so much more now that it's been emulated by my offspring.

Goatse van