Last Chance Saloon

The Haiku con­test ends tomor­row. This is your last chance to sub­mit entries. Some of you have only sub­mit­ted one haiku so you can sub­mit one more. Oth­ers [B?rd, Phil, epm] have not sub­mit­ted any­thing. You, I think, are com­mies. So click on the damn con­test pic­ture over on the side and sub­mit some­thing. Win­ner is announced on Mon­day. Here are a cou­ple more haiku.

across the build­ing
my sweet red­head­ed heartache
wears her hook­er boots

me plus you equals
heart minus mind divid­ed
mul­ti­plied by spring

who needs a gim­mick
a face like a baboon’s butt
is enough for me

three birds in the sky
hot dog buns and tater tots
water­mel­on pie

Random Is As Random Ever Was

So I was across the street eat­ing lunch in the cafe­te­ria with some cowork­ers when, out of nowhere, I run into Chris Siko­rs­ki, a bud­dy of mine from col­lege. The last I had heard from him he was work­ing for the SEC in Chica­go; he still is, and was in Cleve­land doing an ‘exam­i­na­tion’ [not ‘inves­ti­ga­tion,’ mind]. He couldn’t tell me the specifics and I didn’t real­ly care to hear them any­way. We trad­ed num­bers and then last night I took him for a few pints at the Pub­lic House on Lorain. I’d nev­er been there but I’d heard good things. It was dis­ap­point­ing how­ev­er. It was like any oth­er bar, appar­ent­ly they felt that a Guin­ness poster and a few Irish flags turned it into an approx­i­ma­tion of an old coun­try pub.

Chris gave me the down low on work at the SEC, appar­ent­ly his divi­sion does com­pli­ance [audits isn’t the right word but that is what it is, basi­cal­ly] of finan­cial advi­sors to make sure they are ful­fill­ing their oblig­a­tions of dis­clo­sure agree­ments and not breach­ing their con­tracts. Then the issue defi­cien­cy reports and tell the finan­cial advi­sors to fix it. So after all that work, the finan­cial advi­sors get a slap on the wrist. I gath­ered that most of the prob­lems are rather minor and are the result of neg­li­gence but since SEC com­pli­ance is such a big deal in the wake of Enron and all that hoo-ha his depart­ment has been hir­ing finance grad­u­ates like crazy.

I caught him up on my life too but I won’t tell you what I said because its all here in this thing.

Adam’s Nonsensical Ontological Argument

Here I go again with more of this think­ing stuff. You ever get the feel­ing that you’ve thought of some­thing mind­blow­ing and then find out lat­er that some­one else thought about it 100s of years before you and it was prob­a­bly just chill­ing in your sub­con­scious? Yeah, I hate that. So a few days ago I was blab­ber­ing about ontol­ogy to lit­tle avail. Almost a year ago I was blab­ber­ing on the nature of know­ing to basi­cal­ly the same end.

And now, last night, they, unsur­pris­ing­ly in ret­ro­spect, merged. [damn lot­ta com­mas] So I guess this is my ver­sion of the onto­log­i­cal argu­ment. It ends with God = Noth­ing, which is rather sur­pris­ing.

Assume:
x = some­thing
y = noth­ing
z = God

If y ⊆ x exists, where y is a sub­set of x, and z ⊆ x exists, where z is a sub­set of x, then y = z.

Pos­tu­lates†:

  1. Is y a sub­set of x?
    • If x is the set of all that exists then y exists. Ergo, y is a sub­set of x.
  2. Are y and x oppo­sites?
    • At first blush it seems so, but if y were not a sub­set of x then y would not exist. [i usu­al­ly start bog­gling at this point.]

Proof†:
If y DNE then there would be no con­cept of y.
There is a con­cept of y. Mere dis­cus­sion of y proves this.
There­fore, y exists.
If z DNE then there would be no con­cept of z.
There is a con­cept of z. Mere dis­cus­sion of z proves this.
There­fore, z exists.
If y exists and z exists and they are both sub­sets of x, then y equals z.

Fal­lac­i­es†:
I am equat­ing the con­cep­tu­al with the fac­tu­al. I have appar­ent­ly also decid­ed that every­thing in the set of x is mutu­al­ly exclu­sive to every­thing else. So it appears that every­thing is per­mit­ted. So lets do what­ev­er we want.

What I Think About My Art.

I was rum­mag­ing through my old sheet music last night in search of some­thing sim­ple enough for me to play on my gui­tar. While doing this I came to the con­clu­sion that eight years ago I was a damn good sax­o­phon­ist. Up until high school march­ing band killed my love of musi­cal per­for­mance [a love that had already waned since becom­ing involved in orga­nized ensem­bles in 6th grade] I was start­ing to play some Coltrane and learn­ing the art of jazz impro­vi­sa­tion. Then I up and quit. The upshot of this is that all of my sheet music is far too com­pli­cat­ed for me to play on my gui­tar. For now at least. But some­thing as mun­dane as this did get me think­ing. [sur­prise!]

I am in a con­stant­ly strug­gling with my art. I have a well of cre­ativ­i­ty and imag­i­na­tion that I can’t quite ever ful­ly tap into. I feel like I am stand­ing in front of a leak­ing dike with a bowl and just catch­ing drib­bles until I have enough to take a drink. I fig­ure this might be the typ­i­cal state for many artists, and the peri­ods of rapid pro­duc­tiv­i­ty and genius are when the lev­ee breaks. Since all art [except for writ­ing*] is, by its nature, inef­fa­ble I think my dif­fi­cul­ty lies in the basic con­nec­tion between trans­lat­ing the inef­fa­ble into some­thing. Which is a pret­ty damn big prob­lem. A fun­da­men­tal one in fact. A prob­lem that says, per­haps I shouldn’t be doing art at all if I can­not trans­late.

My prob­lem is that I’m not very good at any of the art forms I’ve been try­ing. I’ve avoid­ed draw­ing and paint­ing because I don’t know how to do them and I don’t think my mind is arranged prop­er­ly to deal with that type of visu­al artistry. Film­mak­ing is the clos­est visu­al art to my mind­set because it is sig­inif­i­cant­ly eas­i­er to make things look the way I want them to. My writ­ing breaks down because I always end up writ­ing about writ­ing about things. I want to tell sto­ries, not be a writer or film­mak­er. I want to be a poet, not write poems.

So I’m think­ing that per­haps music is an art I can be good at. With music I don’t need to describe the inef­fa­ble because I can make it myself. This strikes me as the reverse of what I have just talked about. Instead of inter­pret­ing that which can­not be ful­ly inter­pret­ed, if I play good music I can lead myself and oth­ers to a place where things can­not and do not need to be inter­pret­ed. Because being there is enough.

Same Old Dog and Pony Show

So when I was talk­ing with some­one [ok it was my moth­er] over the week­end she once again raised a con­cern about my con­tent on this thingy. She wor­ries that my Men­non­ite uncle, who appar­ent­ly reads this… actu­al­ly I can’t even tell what she wor­ries about because she just says ‘I read it and then I think about C______, he reads it…’

I sort of know what she is get­ting at, but because her objec­tions are so ill-defined I’m inclined to toss them out the win­dow. I think she feels that, because C______ is Men­non­ite, he needs some sort of spe­cial pro­tec­tion from crude lan­guage [for instance, when I write ‘fuck’ or ‘raisin-tit­tied’ or ‘cor­pus­cle’] and oth­er vul­gar behav­iors. Which is ridicu­lous. We live in the same world and pre­tend­ing to be some­thing I’m not is dis­hon­est. I’d rather be vul­gar than dis­hon­est any day of the week, and twice as vul­gar on sun­day.

Do I say the kind of things I say in here in front of my fam­i­ly? No way. There isn’t much room for vul­gar­i­ty or obscen­i­ty when I’m with my kin, and there is also no rea­son for me to feel the need to be that way, so I’m not. It isn’t like I am a dif­fer­ent per­son, it is just that I know the time and place where cer­tain behav­iors are use­ful. Fam­i­ly time = respect.

Which doesn’t real­ly bring me back to my point but I will pre­tend it does any­way. Vis­it­ing my site is vol­un­tary, if you come to vis­it I expect you to put up with how I say things. I don’t have to be respect­ful to any­thing or any­one for any rea­son in this space. You can call me out on obvi­ous blun­ders and mis­con­cep­tions [like Mat­ty and the pics of dead folks]. I wel­come that stuff and will engage in it. But if you say one damn word com­plain­ing about what I write about or how I write about what I write about you can go to hell.

Another Dream

so i remem­bered anoth­er dream i had last night. its pret­ty straight­for­ward.

i go vis­it this lit­tle old lady with cook­ies who proph­e­size­cies to me about what hap­pens lat­er on in my dream [sounds like the matrix]. i nev­er remem­ber dream dia­logue so for­get about what she said. it was basi­cal­ly some­thing along the lines of i was in dan­ger from some group who was after what i had in my head, some sort of impor­tant knowl­edge. [i’m think­ing it was like some­thing like what is in the head of the dude in the movie pi]. so then i leave and my dream cuts to me wak­ing up after i’ve been cap­tured. i’m wear­ing red-edged under­oos™ [minus the under­shirt and by the way, the old woman pre­dict­ed this] and i’m in some sort of psy­chi­atric cell. i know that some­how i’ve giv­en my knowl­edge away and that i have to get some place rather quick­ly before some­thing bad hap­pens. so i bust out, beat up an order­ly and take his shirt which says ‘fem­i­nist chicks dig me’ [i actu­al­ly own this shirt and the old lady pre­dict­ed that too] and tuck it into my under­oos and then hop on a subway/el which takes me to wher­ev­er i need­ed to go to stop the bad guys and then i get killed [the par­al­lax view].

no i didn’t wake up after being killed, i just went on to dream­ing about some­thing else.

Free Concert Friday

So, because I have devel­oped a few con­nec­tions through my work and have start­ed writ­ing music reviews for Urban Dialect, I have now had guestlist access to two shows that I would oth­er­wise had to pay for. Last night I waltzed in to the Grog Shop to see Wait­ing For Evan­ge­line, Mur­der By Death! and Rasputi­na. The evening cost me $6.25: I bought a Wood­chick and left a tip and paid metered park­ing. Not a bad deal for three and a half hours of music.

Wait­ing for Evan­ge­line is based out of Akron. They were bet­ter than Yel­low­card but I kin­da got the feel­ing that they hadn’t set­tled down on their own par­tic­u­lar style yet. They had some real­ly nice riffs but every time the lead singer screamed I want­ed to laugh. It needs some work. They were all busi­ness though and the crowd seemed to like them well enough. I grabbed the band’s stick­er after­ward to add to my gui­tar case. No gui­tar case is com­plete unless it is cov­ered with ran­dom band stick­ers.

Mur­der By Death! was the band my cowork­er is good friends with. They all went to col­lege togeth­er and she was at their first show ever and first road show. They had a cel­list and key­boards in addi­tion to the gui­tar, bass, drumk­it com­bo. They were pret­ty good and they impressed the crowd. A cou­ple of times the sound mal­func­tioned slight­ly but it didn’t slow them down at all.

Rasputi­na was real­ly good. I have come to the con­clu­sion from watch­ing the cel­list in MbD and the ladies of Raspy that the cel­los is a mighty sexy instru­ment when played by a girl. It is also capa­ble of being more met­al than I’d thought cel­los could be. Melo­ra intro­duced their songs with quirky lit­tle anec­dotes and then they would play and cre­ate wicked cool sound­scapes. They also cov­ered Led Zeppelin’s Rock and Roll, an amaz­ing ver­sion of Heart’s Bar­racu­da and CCR’s Bad Moon Ris­ing. They also made every­one sit down so that every­one would be able to see them per­form.