"Undermining my electoral viability since 2001."

Get Samuel!

Just a plug for my comrade Samuel Taylor's Blog. He's a kid I met from Minneapolis through MFA who I fucking love. His blog is rad; talking about his journey toward becoming a professional actor, as well as politics and his own brand of anarcho-christian philosophy (St. Francis style). You can't beat that. Makes me wish I was 22 again.

i took a tour of some of the women in my life from the past four years, recycling old quasi-relationships into new and interesting sculpture-shapes. that was a head trip. rekindled dead coals, found friendship, offended people, made bonds, dodged bullets and generally made mistakes: sort of a condensed version of the real thing. i haven’t been a particularly responsible or exemplary lover over the past four years, but i have tried, and i hope i’ve been as enjoyable and nourishing to my exes and quasi-exes as they have universally been to me - even the ones that didn’t work out so well. ladies, you drive me batshit insane in the best possible ways.

Plenty more where that came from.

I'll definitely be trying to recruit him into the Rebel Unicorn cabal as soon as I can.

Datacenter in a Shipping Container

Sun Black Box
Saw today on slashdot that Sun Microsystems is working on a datacenter in a box. Google's been rumored to have a similar plan.

The idea is simple and smart: you take a shipping container and retrofit it with racks, HVAC, security and networking/electic cables, then you drop it on some dark fiber line, throw in a grip of servers and you've got a local datacenter. Build a national nodal network; give a city blazing-fast access to content via local caching; the possibilities are many.

Back in the 90s, at my first tech job, we were working on plans for stuff like this. It was a wild and shady outfit: the bosses played fast and loose and smoked tons of pot, but they had a vision and a few talented people (not me: I was just a young padwan learner at the time) and for a little while they even had money (of which I got none). But it all went up in a puff of bad management, shoddy/nonexistant planning, and a double-dose of being a decade ahead of your time. C'est la vie.

Anyway, at the time we were calling the concept "Microproperty" and the idea was that there would be all sorts of buisness for geographically localized data services. This was before the Big Bells broke the backs of the so-called CLECs (Competative Local Exchange Carriers -- smaller business that were supposed to be able to compete w/the likes of Verizon), so the initial applications were around telephony. There were also plans for all sorts of verticals: cable tv, electricity, even goods and services. It was a nice dream for world domination, but sadly world domination doesn't usually work out and this was no exception.

Morning Coffee and Links

Some quick hits for ya:

The word of God on the topic of blogging, which is a mixed bag but fantastically interesting. Social networks are the devil. (credit: samuel)

Quote of the Morning:

"[I am] the only one on this stage who has a tough policy. I want to build the walls. I want to make sure there is no road to residency. I am the son of a legal immigrant. There are people today who attempted to come here as legal immigrants and died. Now we’ve got people flooding into this nation for no other reason than they want a better life for themselves...

That's 4%-polling Republican candidate for CT-Sen Alan Schlesigner, who came out swinging in last nights debate vs. upstart Democrat Ned Lamont and GOP-backed Independent Joementum (the Republicans ditched Schlesigner for Joe when Ned beat his ass the Democratic primary).

The dynamics of American Facism... I think the best bit is at the end. Classic fascism is really a kind of reactionary modernism -- industrial mass society, one-to-many communication, etc, combined with reactionary and xenophobic politics -- whereas in our particular moment we are witnessing something far more insidious and strange: reactionary post-modernism. How else can one explain the break between the organized Right-wing in the US and what they disdainfully call "the reality-based community."

Moustaches for a Majority

An idea who's time has come:

And this is the brilliance -- it is a conversation starter, and the conversation that it begins will be a vital one that you might not otherwise have had about the importance of a Democratic majority. The conversation might begin, "Hey, so you decided to grow out your moustache, eh?" or "Couldn't help but notice you're lookin' like a slovenly idiot nowadays, what's that about?" But from there, the answer immediately turns the conversation to your explanation -- they will laugh, it will be a fun conversation, and yet by the time you're finished you will have had exactly the kind of person-to-person contact that is so valued by campaigns everywhere, and perhaps the person who so admired your 'stache will now be much more inclined to vote, to volunteer, or to support your local Dem candidate. And, as noted in #1, the whole process was hilarious.

Manic Monday -- Weekend Update

And so another week begins. I've got to get back into the autobio practice (what this is trying to return to) so I'll recap my weekend. I want to be a little careful and intentional here, as I'm trying to walk a couple of lines:

  • No a secret diary -- the original genesis of this whole thing was to open up my life a bit more and to lift up my conduct and being all around, not to have a place where I write things instead of saying them. It's a easy slip to have this be a substitute for more immediate expression, rather than the poetical mass-communication and aspiration I want it to be.
  • Don't burn people -- I've gone over the general concept of what stories are mine to tell and what aren't, usually in the context of "kissing and blogging," but trying to get back into autobiographical writing means being careful about what I say about other people. I've already done things like remove old posts about friends who've become lawyers and have questionable google results because of something i wrote in 2002.
  • Keep it interesting -- while I've got a certain confidence in the palatability of the reality-TV equivalent of blogging, I don't want to tumble down some hallway of self-obsession and inward-looking myopia. Intriguing introspection is the ideal; don't want to run off my little readership with a bunch of pathetic navel-gazing.

Anyway, enough disclaimer. This is an evolution. Let's get started. 1500+ words after the jump.

Polling For a Clash of Civilizations

In my continual hope that we don't end up with a stupid perpetual war, this polling is a bit unnerving. It is from FoxNews, and uses whatever stats-screen they have to zero in on "Likely Voters," but it is s a real poll. The major indications are likely correct.

30. Do you agree or disagree with the view that the military action being taken overseas in Iraq is necessary to protect Americans from having to fight radical Muslim terrorists on U.S. soil?

  Agree Disagree (Don’t know)
All 49% 44 7
Democrats 24% 67 9
Republicans 84% 13 4
Independents 42% 52 6

31. How likely do you think it is that within the next 20 years the United States will be involved in an all-out war with radical Muslim extremists that will affect our families and way of life?

    Likely     Not likely    
TOTAL Vry Smwht TOTAL Ntvry Not (DK)
All 70% 34 36 24 17 7 6
Democrats 68% 31 37 26 17 9 5
Republicans 75% 42 33 20 16 4 6
Independents 68% 32 36 25 18 7 7

But here's a ray of sunshine: about 3/4 of people (including a majority of Republicans) say it's time to start bringing our troops home from Iraq. I agree.

Video Sunday

Washington, Washington... 6-foot-20, fucking kiling for fun:

Here come's George, in control
Women love his snuff and his gallant stroll
Ate opponents brains
And invented cocaine
He's coming / He's coming
He's coming / He's coming

And as an extra bonus, something my old colleague Jeremy Rosen made which strikes me as an excelent little production. Seems like something I would do with Frank if the times were different.

Conversations with Fiona Apple:

Finally, one for real politics. This is possibly the best "go vote" ad I've ever seen. It's intelligent, it's sophisticated, and it's humorous without being self-depricating. It's Women's Voices Women's Vote:

If there's any one thing that could get the progressive bandwaggon (health care! health care!) going in this country, it would be if younger/single women started voting in greater numbers.

Schwinn City Sinners

My gang will get you:

Schwinn City Sinners

This is hardcore:

Schwinn City 2

A little context: those are from back in 2002 when we were all living in The Meek, a rowhouse we took over apartment by apartment on Meeker Avenue in Greenpoint. It was across the street from the BQE and it was all ours. Good days.

Competition For The Rebel Unicorn

Tresler points me to Joi Ito talking about Six Apart's new joint, Vox. It's a good name for a good product, and a nice logical next step between typepad and livejournal (which they bought).

But I like the name "Rebel Unicorn" better.

Basically my take is that the future is not in having some magic technology that lets you run a huge site that everyone uses. That's why the myspace and youtube buys don't seem like good moves to me: the functionality can and will be replicated 100 times over, so all you're buying is the community. Google may have a chance at holding that, but Fox is almost guaranteed to fuck it up over the next five years.

Not that myspace will evaporate, but it will cease to be the phenomena that it is, and just become a national "scene" site for emo kids. You might as well have bought makeoutclub.com, Rupert.

Where the future is at is in running a more modest site (or if you're not modest, a site that lets people run sites) which actually serves a real community, but which can interoperate. The future is in enabling a network of social websites, not in running some kind of monolith.

I'll write about this and how it wiil happen on my work blog soon.

Wedding Coverage

I haven't written too much about Laura and Frank's wedding last weekend, mainly because I've been running flat-out since and haven't composed thoughts yet. Anyway, I found some of my friends had posted about it:

Tresler!:

I ran all over creation assembling the 'costume' part. Someday I'll find that invitation to get the exact wording, but both Julie and I perused it and it was something to the effect of 'Come dressed in something you wouldn't wear everyday, Surprise your friends, change your haircolor'. Julie at first thought it was a joke so I verified with Frank and Laura that a modest 'costume' would be okay. They said it would be great.

Naturally we were the only cowboy and 'hussie'(her word not mine) there.

Ms. Rose!:

The whole event kind of redeemed weddings in my eyes. I've been resistant to the idea of a wedding for me and Jen lately, mainly because it makes me feel stupid to think of spending thousands and thousands of dollars on an event that is merely for show, not resulting in any increased protection for our union, and our family. But I saw on Saturday, that if your wedding is about who you really are, then its alot more than that - it really is an event that brings your union before your family and friends and says, hey, we're doing this, please honor and celebrate that and help us, today and through the rest of our lives.

And both of those folks have blogs worth reading, I might add... speaking of which, I need to get my blogroll back in action, GD-it.

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