Monday, January 31, 2011

Wheely True

Not even gonna try to comment on the amazing uprising in Egypt, except, "Mubarek; Game Over," and "U.S., stop sending billions to dictatorships and spend it on Americans."

Funny pic is from Laughing Squid.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Darren Criss!

He's so talented and adorable! I've become such a fanboi. Can't wait to see what happens with he and (Golden Globe winner) Chris Colfer's characters on Glee.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Book 'em

Oh, dear. Like the unwanted pregnancy that turns out to be a favorite child, a new novel, perhaps a novella, has sprung forth from my brain to the computer over the weekend.

I hadn't planned it, and the inspiration is based on half fanciful recreation of teenage experiences, but more on recent dreams. Unlike some dreams, perhaps inspired by too much pizza before bed, there are no all-singing, all-dancing dinosaur musical numbers, but a series of plottable scenes that, transmuted to print, lose some of their fantastical qualities, but intrigue me, and hopefully someday, readers.

Yes, I awoke at four a.m Saturday morning, cranked out the first two chapters and went to bed contemplating the subsequent ones. Even doing four loads of laundry while reading a Kurt Vonnegut book could not distract me from new chapters for the characters that have emerged, almost fully formed, out of nowhere but my psyche and a cup of coffee.

If I sound like I'm bemoaning a new spurt of spontaneous creativity, perhaps I am. Who needs another gay novel, me in particular, its typist, when several others lay half-written in print drafts and on my computer (and double backed up on an external hard drive and separate discs. I learned that lesson to the tune of a 2001 computer failure and an $800 drive recovery bill).

Anyway, I'll withhold the details of the new book, excepting that the process this time isn't going to be as labored as previous works. I suppose all those years of fumbling away at the first three will make the subsequent ones' completion simpler (Monkey Suits was written first, and Cyclizen drafted in greater form before PINS, which I self-published first, it being the coming of age tale and all. Confusing? A bit).

What I hope to be the next one (yet a different novel) needs work, proofing and an agent. Frankly, were I a more daring author, I could pitch this baby based on the first two chapters alone.

At the same time, I'm finally dabbling in e-book creation software of my already published works, to some befuddling code errors. Perhaps I'll Kindle my way into the 21st century, knuckle down and just let some hireling make it e-work, with chapter links, etc.

Related to this theme, visually at least, are images from the work of surrealist painter Jonathan Wolstenholme. I first saw a gallery of his work while attempting to peruse Facebook on my new cell phone.

Facebook friend Mark Dylan Sieber, a self-described "disengaged designer and ink slinger," continues to post beguiling galleries of graphics that demand downloads as witty screensavers. Visit his blog now.

Sieber posts galleries of famous and little-known artists like my favorite French impressionist-realist, Gustave Caillebotte, who was not only a great artist, but quite the hunk. See for yourself.

A poorly trimmed poster (cropped to fit an ornate junky yet suitable frame) of his "Floor Scrapers" adorns my writing room wall (partially because, as a former dancer, I recall the sensation of freshly sanded wooden sprung studio floors).

I first saw Caillebotte's work in a 1995 visit to Paris at the Muse´d'Orsay, where his works, and "Un Coin de Table" by Henri Fantin-Latour, brought me to emotional catharses and inspired both published and unpublished works. Caillebotte's "La place de l'Europe, temps de pluie" at the Chicago Art Institute, also brought me to tears. Perhaps on each occasion, I was simply an exhausted tourist. Doubtful.

This post is also a pleasant way to bump down my previous post about that ... hideous Alaskan creature (see below), whose name I refuse to ever again type or speak, and as a sort of blathering response to a query from another writer that I join in to a 15-Questions format he posed to some writers (on Facebook, yet again) about their process. Obviously, I broke the rules and chose my own format.

As to creative inspiration, I think I've answered that in my own way. Should said new novel-in-gestation ever be published, an inside secret to you will be that I just now chose to make the story's love interest resemble a modern teenage version of Caillebotte. Why? Why does a dog lick his own butt? (Because he can.)

So now, I will, as one floor scraper seems to be saying to the other, "Get back to work, hot stuff."

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Palin Speech = Hate Speech

Report Sarak Palin's horrific "crosshairs" graphic on Facebook.

The crazed shooter who killed six people in Tucson has no literal connection to Sarah Palin, the Tea Party, or the Republican Patry. The New York Times reports his mental illness, videos and online connections to anti-semitic hate groups, though. Who can say what connection there is (hey, Bristol Plain just bought a house in Arizona, with cash; coincidence? Yes.)

Palinites are already splitting infinitives and arguing semantics over the word "crosshairs" versus "gunsights."

But one thing is clear. The violence committed is merely the ultimate extreme version of the rhetoric spewed by this woman, her adherents, and the bulk of bilious rightwing politicians and media puppets.

Openly Gay Intern Daniel Hernandez Jr. Credited With Saving Life Of Rep. Giffords

Daniel Hernandez Jr., the 20-year old student intern credited with saving the life of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, confirmed to the Dallas Voice this morning that he is openly gay.

Hernandez, who confirmed that he is gay in an interview with Instant Tea on Sunday morning, is a member of the City of Tucson Commission on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Issues. “She’s been a great ally to the LGBT community,” Hernandez said of Giffords during the brief interview across a bad connection.

Read more at JoeMyGod, who notes: "The website for the Dallas Voice is presently showing an "Account Suspended" message. It's possible that this news has caused the site to temporarily exceed its hosting agreement. I'll update this post if more is learned."

Related news:

Jared Loughner YouTube Videos, MySpace Suggest Alleged Shooter May Have Ties To Hate Group

Heroic Woman Charged Jared Loughner, Averting 'Huge Greater Catastrophe'

Monday, January 3, 2011


Bumble Bees IN U.S. Suffer Sharp Decline
Latest research on U.S. bumble bees only exacerbates concerns over future food production, as bees are responsible for pollinating 90 percent of the world's commercial plants, from fruits and vegetables to coffee and cotton.

Hundreds of dead blackbirds found near New Roads
LABARRE, La. - Around 500 dead blackbirds and starlings have been found in Pointe Coupee Parish, according to state wildlife officials.

The birds were spotted lying in roads and ditches near Labarre Elementary School. The community is between Morganza and New Roads on Highway 10. Scientists from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries have been sent out to collect samples, which will be sent for testing to the University of Georgia and National Wildlife Center in Wisconsin.

This comes after about 5,000 blackbirds and swallows were found dead around Beebe, Ark. on New Year's Eve. Dr. Jim LaCour with LDWF said he's not sure the two incidents are connected.

"It's not common, (but) we do see a few die-offs for various reasons," said LaCour. "Yes, we need to look into it, we need to be a little alarmed, but it's not out of the scope of things to have a die-off."

Birds fall out of sky en masse

Maybe the Mayans were on to something?
That's surely what students of the famed Mayan 2012 prophecy for the end of the world had to be thinking with the news of recent eerie wildlife die-offs in Arkansas. Just as the calendar nudged a year closer to that fateful date, birds began falling from the sky in Arkansas and a massive fish kill occurred some 125 miles to the west.

The end of days?

Oops. Never mind...

Expert says storm likely killed thousands of birds

...for now.

Oops. More.

Dead birds fall from the sky in Maryland, Brazil, and New Zealand.

Thousands of dead fish in Toronto.

Thousands of dead fish in Florida.

Thousands of dead fish in Arizona.

Boy, that "storm" sure gets around.

Update, Jan 6: ..and thousands of dead crabs wash up on shore in New England.

I guess that "storm" went below sea level.

Oh, and here's the latest: Thousands of dead turtle doves with odd green markings on their beaks drop dead in Italy.

Let's keep track of our species apocalypse, shall we?

EU Times has a long list of recent mass species die-offs.

Slide show of previous mysterious animal mass alleged suicides.

But don't compare any of them to lemmings. Read online:

"I forget the exact details, but basically what happened with those POOR lemmings, was that the Disney Corporatio­n was on this wildlife filming kick, so they rounded up these lemmings, hoping to film them in cliff-side area. Unfortunat­ely the animals were completely confused, and stressed and ended up leaping off the cliff out of confusion, not from a mass desire to commit suicide. But Disney sold it that way ever since.