I've been brushing up against the century mark a lot lately...
My post count at a favorite automobile enthusiast bulletin board just rolled into the triple digits a couple days ago, and I've been doing a lot aggressive driving in said favorite automobile at over 100mph*.
And now, I'm penning my 100th post to Prose Justice. While I'd typically devote this entry to that alone, I'd rather get into detail on a new fixation.
Ever hear of Woot!?
Interesting online marketplace. Run by cool people with funny personalities. There is a bulletin board on the woot website, and each week they hold a photoshop contest, somewhat related to a product they sell, with an arbitrary goal.
This particular week was a double-pronged challenge. We, the contestants, had to select a product they offered, create an anagram of that product, and use the anagram as the title of a novel. Then we were told to design a cover for the novel and incorporate the product somehow. It's a bit much to bite off, especially being my first attempt at this (the contest has already been judged and I didn't win jack squat, but that's beside the point).
Regardless, here was the product I selected:
The Jepson Winery Mendocino Mix.
I took 'jepson winery mendocino' and found that it anagrammed to 'speedy minnow conjoiner'.
What in the world to do with this? Obviously I needed to turn to the most famous minnow in history, the S.S. Minnow of Gilligan's Island fame. From there, I found a suitable picture of a man, who, in my opinon, could potentially have fixed the Minnow and rescued those poor castaways, if only he had some inspiration to guide him**:
I gave it a little more thought, discovered some other anagrams for bonus points ('Jepson Winery Mendocino Mix' = 'Epoxy Rejoins Minced Minnow'; useful indeed... and 'Kevin James Savino-Riker' = 'An Invasive, Irksome Jerk'***), and came up with the following:
Click for a slightly larger version.
So, I said this was going to be a repository of sorts for creative media... I guess I'm living the dream. Hopefully there will be more to come. Hopefully all other anagrams of my name are less unflattering. Here's a start: 'Kevin Savino-Riker' = 'Ninja-Reviver Kiosk'. Even uses the hyphen. I'll have to draw a picture of that someday...
* - I know it's illegal, but I wouldn't do it if I wasn't doing it safely.
** - NOT Gilligan.
** - It breaks my heart, but I should've seen it coming.
Monday, November 20, 2006
I've been brushing up against the century mark a lot lately...
Friday, November 17, 2006
As promised here and here, I'm delivering the goods:
This is our finished submission to the Insomniac Film Festival: "Give us a fighting chance..."
Unfortunately, I'm not just asking you to watch this film for your own entertainment... what I'd really appreciate is your vote.
If you already have an apple account, you can rate our video and help us move up the ranks. If you don't have one, it's free and quick to sign up, and having one will not affect you or your e-mail inbox in any way that you don't want it to.
While I personally appreciate honest feedback (which you can feel free to leave me directly in the comments section of this post), if you have anything less than stellar to say when rating the video, I strongly encourage you to lie. We're in the running for some great software and a handful of ipods, and most importantly I'd do it for you if you asked me to help you win a contest.
While I don't yet have access to our original garbage submission mentioned in one of the earlier posts linked above, I will have it soon, and will display it in all it's embarrassingly funny splendor.
Meanwhile, you've got some voting to do.
NOTE: Some people are reporting to me that their browsers aren't able to play the embedded quicktime clip on the voting page. In that case, you should just go ahead and give us an 'excellent' rating while you're there. If you still want to see the video, you can try your luck watching it off our local server. You still need quicktime. But hey, it's not like I'm asking you to download RealPlayer...
Tuesday, November 14, 2006
Yep. Works like a charm.
Like there was ever a doubt.
So Google, as you know, is expected to take over the world sometime between 2009 and late 2009. And despite their constant march toward global domination, which would fully exhaust the resources of just about any motivated corporate body, they still make time to interconnect all their little utilities and services, expanding their feature sets and generally improving the interface between the end user (that's you) and increasingly numerous elements of the internet.
Take this blog entry, for example. Google recently acquired and further developed a program called Writely, a web-based word processor with collaborative functionality and tons of other goodies, including a spreadsheet companion. They're aiming to make Microsoft Office obsolete. They're on their way to achieving it. Regardless, I'm bringing this up because I'm writing this blog entry in the new Google Docs & Spreadsheets interface. And I can publish it directly to the blog, right from within the document editor.
So, that raises the total number of unique means by which one can submit content to a blogger account to a healthy 37.
Go, Google, go. Wait.... lemme buy some stock first. Then go.
Monday, November 13, 2006
As mentioned in post-previous, I took part in a filmmaking contest this past weekend, and promised to blog again upon completion of the project.
It didn't go so well.
A quick recap - Apple Computer revealed a set of criteria that each participating five-member team must incorporate into a three-minute short film that was to be submitted within 24 hours of said criteria being revealed. The obvious goal (and just in case it wasn't obvious enough, they named it the 'Insomnia Film Festival') was to get teams to stay up all night producing the film.
It didn't go so well.
The problem is that we got too ambitious with the direction of the project. We had narrowed our path down to two potential concepts: one which was pretty basic with potential for humor (if done correctly), and one that was unique and novel, and had the potential for a hysterically funny climax, but was also complicated and would be very demanding to film. We chose to attempt the latter. I'm proud of this because the latter idea was of my own devising, but I am disappointed, because choosing to film it ultimately led to the team's demise.
The synopsis of the storyline is as follows:
A girl receives three different singing telegrams from three different people for three different reasons, all of whom arrive at her house at the same time.
The contest criteria we'd chosen to include were numerous... all you need to know is that one of them included a sidekick monkey.
To pull this off, we needed to film four sets of backstory footage for the characters, each in different settings. Plot elements critical to the story involved indoor and outdoor scenes in daylight and at night - which meant we had to plan our shooting schedule very carefully to work with the timeframe we were given. On top of all this, our film was going to be narrated and needed to feature a soundtrack. I'll remind you that it's illegal to include copyrighted material in our production; we had to compose and record the music ourselves. We needed to put together a wardrobe that included several garage mechanics, a tuxedo, and a gorilla suit.
Things kept stacking up.
The critical shot of the film is when the three singing telegrams arrive at the girls house, and, seeing the competition, engage in a full-on brawl in her front yard as each tries to be the first one to get to the door. By the time we finished shooting, we only had two hours left to edit the footage and to record the narrations/overdubs.
Where we really shot ourselves in the foot was forgetting that the raw footage had to upload into the editor in realtime, which meant we had to wait an hour before we could even start working on putting the film together.
Loren, the director/editor, started out methodically, selecting the best takes for each scene and started building the story as it was originally written... but as the deadline drew closer, we realized that we were not going to finish in time. Rather than finish the film as planned and be unable to submit it for judging, Loren instead chose to lose his goddamn mind and just started grabbing footage at random and throwing it in in awkward chunks. He threw in narration, again at random, and never over the appropriate scene. Almost half the scenes we shot were left completely out of the film. Still others appeared three or more times each.
What came out of the frenzy was three minutes of garbage. There was no story to follow, the narration appeared out of order and would only serve to further confuse the viewer, and we'd omitted the requisite title page entirely. But we got that fucker in on time.
At this point, our only hope is that some Hollywood hipster on the judging panel sees our work as an avant-garde visionary masterpiece and grants us the grand prize on the spot. It could happen...
Meanwhile, the five of us who got together for the project still want to see what we would have come up with. We know that if we'd managed to submit the film we wanted to, we'd have had gold on our hands. So, we're going to finish post-production, even though we cannot enter it into the contest. Once that is up, I will post a link here. And afterward, I'll post a link to the film we ended up submitting to Apple.
What's ironic, is that when we watched the garbage submission, we all thought it was funnier than the actual story we'd written - it came together in that haphazard way that was too absurd to be intentional, and therefore was hilarious. Of course, the problem is, it can only be that funny when you knew what it was supposed to be in the first place. Soon enough I'll have links to both versions up here, and I'll let you decide for yourselves.
Meanwhile, I'll be spending my time online, looking for contests with later deadlines.
Friday, November 10, 2006
Let the record show that I promised to post pictures of our recent Halloween party. Even though I want to talk about something else in this entry, I must yield those pictures for fear of losing my capacity for follow-through. I will not, however expend any more effort in hosting and presenting the pictures myself; others have already done so, and I'm more than ready to change topics. In light of that, I present:
Halloween pics, via Tony Lau
Halloween pics, via Darren Miles
Okay. Had enough? Me too*.
Some of you know that I was one of a group of six friends/roommates/co-workers who entered a Microsoft-sponsored contest last fall and won a massive-prize package consisting of pre-public-release Xbox 360's and VIP tickets to the Xbox 360 'Zero Hour' release party. We won with this video submission**.
Since that time, we've all had an itch to enter another video project (working on the last one was sooo fun), and the added allure of another prize package augmented our desires. Loren Prendergast, the filmmaker extraordinaire*** who discovered the xbox contest last year, has finally found another contest worthy of entering: The Insomnia Film Festival, by Apple Computer.
The rough idea is as follows: They announce the required submission elements, and the participant filmmaking teams have one day to submit a three-minute video conforming to the guidelines.
This means we have to pick our artistic direction (we are allowed to choose any three of the twelve or so required elements to incorporate into our entry), write a compatible script, cast and film the entire sequence, then complete all editing and post-production in less than 24 hours.
That may sound less-than-challenging, but only if you have no idea what goes into making a professional-quality video. To provide a frame of reference, the xbox video linked above is 30 seconds long. To make that film, we shot ten minutes of raw footage, which took fourteen hours alone. Creating a soundtrack took another day, and Loren spent at least a day in post-production, combining all the elements we created and editing the entire piece to run in the time allotted.
Now we have to create something six times as long, in one third of the time. Oh, and did I mention the clock is already ticking? They released the details at 2pm today. As I write this sentence it is 3:05. Five percent of our time has already elapsed.
It's now 3:17. The team has gathered, so we're gonna ditch on the rest of the work day and get cracking. Here's the list of criteria for the video.... we have selections to make. Wish us luck!
- Required character name: Alex Kona
- Required dialog line: "No, you don't understand what it's like growing up here."
- Required costume: leather jacket and dark sunglasses
- Required prop: ice
- Required side kick: pet monkey
- Required setting: abandoned building
- Required shot: clock with 4:11 on face
- Required makeup: fake eyelashes and blue eye shadow
- Required genre: sci-fi/fantasy
- Required camera effect: crane or boom shot
- Required editing device: musical montage
Once we have our submission created, I'll post a link for your critiquing pleasure :)
* - Implicitly introduces new topic. I'm not in an explicit kind of mood.
** - which makes absolutely no sense to you unless you know the back story of the contest and its associated submission criteria. Rest assured that our video was an awesome representation of what they asked for.
*** - guy who owns the camera
Monday, October 30, 2006
Blogger's new beta is slowly emerging from its shroud of secrecy as of late, and this blog's author is succumbing to the allure of a new interface. Though it's self-admittedly incomplete and potentially buggy, I am confident enough in Blogger's (via Google's) expertise that any remaining problems will be eliminated promptly. So I went ahead and transitioned everything into the new format.
What does that mean to you? For starters, it means that Prose Justice is looking a little greyer, a little wider, and left-handed. Just like me; that is, the left handed part... and maybe the wider part, but not the greyer part. Oh, the updated archived post navigation methodology is worth the price of admission alone*.
I'm anticipating the influx of photo galleries from those who took pictures at the Halloween Haunting II at The Lodge this past Saturday. Once those are in my possession, I'll drop back and write about the party. Meanwhile, enjoy the following:
Drink to your health!
* - Yeah, the price of admission is free, but don't let that technicality take anything away from the compliment.
Saturday, October 07, 2006
Just hosting a couple images here. It's graphic design time again... there's an enthusiast forum for a particularly awesome car (with a very gay acronym for its model designation, but that's secondary), and I'm an active member. They're taking submissions for a new t-shirt design and I figured I'd throw a quickie together. Needed a place to host it. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
When a band gains popularity, change is inevitable. The list of venues expands, the groupies get hotter, the tips fill bigger jars, the beer gets colder, and most importantly, the band gets new equipment.
Shelby Three and The Harmony*, however, is more efficient than your typical band. We skipped all those steps of getting popular and such, and went straight for the new gear.
Of course, we justified it. "We're going to be getting bigger, playing all these new gigs, making all this good money. Well, to do that we've got to be prepared." We got the stuff before we needed it, because we knew that someday... we would. Might as well take all this time to get familiar with it. And on Tuesday I'm getting fitted for my tux. You know, for Grammy night.
The biggest change is definitely the IEM setup. IEMs (or In-Ear-Monitors for short) take the place of those angled cabinet speakers** that sit on the ground facing the band members. When a band plays a gig, typically their loudspeakers are positioned in front of them, which is great for the sound in the listening area, but wretched for the sound on stage itself. Monitors allow you to "monitor" your own sound clearly while performing. I just don't know why they call them that.
Since our band skipped the 'get popular' process, we don't have roadies. Rather than spend the money on big heavy floor cabinet monitors that we don't have room for anyways, we decided to go with a personal monitor system. Easy fix, right? borrow your fashionable white iPod ear buds, get an extension cord, and plug in!
Unfortunately, that ain't the ticket. Stages are loud. iPod earbuds have to be cranked up dangerously loud just so you can hear their output over the rest of the noise around you. IEMs, on the other hand, have a dual functionality. They are designed for safety first, acting as protective earplugs that isolate the performer from loud and distracting sounds, thereby preventing hearing loss and embarrassing mistakes. They also have small accurately tuned speakers embedded within, but they don't have to be turned up nearly as loud because of all the sound isolation.
Just so we're on the same page here, the IEM industry uses the above paragraph the way you or I would use the words "stupidly expensive."
But really now, can I put a price on saving my hearing and improving my performance on stage? Well, yes, but that's beside the point.
The point, for those of you keeping tabs, is that wearing IEMs is a strange and wonderful experience. This is what my monitors look like:
They go deep inside your ear canal... so deep that they actually touch each other right behind your eyes; when you wear them, you lose auditory contact with the outside world. connect them to an audio source and the sound seems to be piped directly into your brain. It's amazing. But, as you might imagine, those silicone umbrellas are not the most comfortable thing to jam into any orifice. But, there is a solution, which is actually what prompted me to write today: custom-fit earmolds***. When custom sleeves are used, they look like this:
Now, in order for the manufacturer to know what shape to make these things, they need to know what shape your ear is. Which means you (well, I actually mean "I", don't I?) have to visit an audiologist and they have to take 'full-shell ear impressions'. What follows is my account of the process.
Joe Farnsworth (who is also getting this procedure done for his IEMs) and I sat down in the examination room. The audiologist placed what I can best describe as ear-tampons, these little sponges on a string, up against our eardrums, then she brought out a little caulk-gun of a device with two tubes of hot pink silicone gel. She attached a long nozzle and injected the cold, gummy sludge into our ears. Immediately the world got quiet and disgusting. She worked her way around the helix of my ear like a cake decorator might apply frosting to, well, an ear. While the procedure was completely painless, it was uncomfortably awkward. In order for the impressions to be taken correctly, I had to move my jaw the way I would when using the earmolds. Simply put, I had to sit in the chair and sing for five minutes without being able to hear myself. After the material set, she grabbed the tampon string and pulled, twisting the solidified material in order to ease its passage out of my body. I will never come closer to understanding what it's like to be an uncorked bottle of wine. It was... wierd.
The whole appointment was over in twenty minutes, and when Joe and I walked out that door to the car, we walked in silence, wearing on our faces the expression you'd wear if you and your friend just saw each other get head-raped. But while we felt confused and addled, we were also happy, because they didn't charge us for the impressions and in about three weeks we're going to have a really nice add-on to our gear that will simultaneously improve their performance and make them much more comfortable to wear for extended periods. Which is why we also stole a handful of ear-tampons.
* - Joe Farnsworth performing solo: 'Joe Unglued'.
Add Kevin Savino-Riker on guitar/vocals: still 'Joe Unglued'.
Add Brian Douglas on guitar: 'Veneer'
Add Shelby Prendergast on percussion, Chris Newbold on bass guitar, and swap Brian's guitar for a keyboard: 'Shelby Three and The Harmony'
** - Out-Ear-Monitors, I guess you could call them. If you really wanted to.
*** - Not like a spore colony growing due to lack of hygeine, but like a cast. Ask an artist.
Wednesday, September 27, 2006
I've always been a late-adopter when it comes to joining social networks that have anything to do with the words cyber, virtual, online, or face.
Whether it was signing up for Instant Messenger, joining Hot-or-Not, or creating this blog, I went through the exact same process every time - feeling like in doing so I would lose my soul, downgrading 'soul' to 'dignity', downgrading 'dignity' to 'pocket change', then finally accepting that *probably* nothing bad will come from it.
Well, I've given in once again. I've accepted my social responsibility to everyone in the world that I've ever met, and joined up with Facebook. Emma Kiele Fry is to blame.
Until she invited me yesterday, I had a good thing going - I didn't want to be a part of Facebook when I was in college, and then after I left school it was out of my hands. I couldn't join if I wanted to, since I no longer had a valid RIT e-mail address. The blame rested squarely on Facebook's own digital shoulders for catering exclusively to students. But then in a surprise move, they opened the gates to the entire internet population. I was no longer safe, and I forgot to look for cover. Emma's e-mail looked innocent enough. And besides, I was tired of running from the inevitable.
So here I am. The reason I'm blogging about this is because I have chosen to link Prose Justice's RSS feed into the 'Notes' section of my facebook profile. As evidenced by a flurry of friend activity in my first 24 hours as a member, I'm expecting that a bunch of people are going to poke around a little bit and eventually find the blog. People might actually start reading this damn thing again. I'd better be ready.
Which means greetings are due again.
So, I've gone on long enough explaining this post. Now let me get to what I intended to do:
To all you out there who found this blog via my Facebook profile, Welcome to Prose Justice!
This blog is a hybrid personal journal/creative media repository that I started just over two years ago, left completely unattended for the last year, and very recently broke back into and began contributing to again. There are something on the order of 90 posts in the body of this collection, some of which are a worthwhile read, some of which are not.
I do not encourage you to read through my old posts unless you are a stalker. I believe there are a couple really good entries in there, but since I adopted a post-titling scheme of summing the entire entry up with one million-dollar word, it's almost useless to search through my archives for an entry that stands out as significant; they all sound like they'd be important, even if they're one sentence explaining that I don't have anything to say.
Having said that, I highly encourage you to read through all my old posts, as I often refer to topics from previous posts and use certain acronyms that won't make sense unless you see the posts in which they originated. I use asterisks* often to annotate my thoughts. I find them to be a fun way to draw a reader around a page. Annotations appear at the bottom of the entry in smaller italicized text.
Oh, and another thing for you 'bookers - It seems that imported blog entries do not transfer embedded pictures. If you find yourself reading a note of mine and it sounds like I'm referring to a photo of something, click the 'View original post' link at the bottom to be redirected to the original page at Prose Justice. The pictures will be there.
9/28/06 - EDIT: The above paragraph is apparently false... embedded pictures just started showing up in my facebook notes. But text formatting doesn't seem to translate at all. Until tomorrow, maybe.
Okay, I think that's a good crash course and set of guidelines for the budding Prose Justice reader. I'm not going to be so arrogant as to believe that I'm going to start seeing a ton of traffic here, but I'm the kind of guy who likes to plan for every contingency. With any luck, this post didn't just scare off any of the potential new readers who had the courage to make it this far.
'Till next time, POFN**
*This is an example of me using asterisks to annotate my thoughts.
**Peace Out For Now
Friday, September 01, 2006
Here's something that started bothering me this morning, for no apparent reason:
Dictionaries have entries for the word 'dictionary'. Now, this in and of itself does not bother me. It's obvious that the word does not need to be there*, as the person reading the dictionary clearly already understands its function; it would be a poor choice, however, to selectively omit entries based on recursive/redundant representation. That would just provoke some idiot to come along and prove that it did need to be there. And I don't want to endure the shame of being proven wrong by an idiot.
Here is where my problem lies - Assume that a person unfamiliar with the word 'dictionary' encounters it for the first time. How can he learn, without assistance, what it means? For all intents and purposes, a dictionary has no practical ability to define itself. The person in question needs an a priori understanding of a dictionary in order to know where to look it up. That right there, is a real-world paradox. No time travel and patricide required. Thank you very much.
Here's another quickie; it's not a bothersome one, I just want to know the answer:
If you were to fill the passenger compartment of a Boeing 747 with pennies, would it be enough money to buy said airplane? My gut (which is very well
fed read) tells me that it would be enough to buy several. It also reminds me that if you had the means to perform such an experiment, you can probably afford all the airplanes you want... and would probably just pay by check.
*I realize the benefit of a dictionary entry extends beyond defining a word. For example, someone may not know the spelling of the word 'dictionary'. But in counterpoint, I'll remark that opening up a dictionary and searching for it in an alphabetical list is far less efficient than, for example, reading it off the fucking cover.
Monday, August 28, 2006
The ever-accelerating pace of everything.
While I usually use the term 'ever-accelerating' directly in reference to emerging computer technologies, and in some cases to spirited highway jaunts in the SHO, this time I'm applying it in a broader sense to the general access to technology by anyone living above the poverty line in the United States, and its effect on the entertainment industry.
National renown was once the playground of Hollywood's elite and radio's darlings. A-list celebrities*. Movie stars and rock stars. Then a host of heiresses, heirs, self-made billionaires, and other rich bastards joined the ranks. B-list celebrities**. Fame based upon purchasing power, fueled by tabloids looking for new targets after what I can only assume was a drought in royal-family melodrama. They made it into the domain of water-cooler talk and dinner conversation in households across America.
Simultaneously, a phenomenon caught on in television that spurred the growth of yet another breed of celebrity: the reality-show participant. They took the lowly game-show contestant and found a way to inflate his image beyond sub-culture recognition and into a whole new territory. The recipe: Take ten average people, throw them into an oddball competitive scenario, film it from thirty angles and find a past-his-prime Hollywoodster to provide voiceovers and perform general hosting duties (thus seeding the whole operation with a *little* popularity), then hyper-edit the whole thing and run it through a few spin cycles of the entertainment industry corporate dryer. Throw in a once-in-a-lifetime prize package at the end, and what do you have? A planned and engineered card-carrying celebrity superstar. Made of the same stuff you and I are made of. But they get all the in-the-clique perks plus free towing within a hundred miles.
Now, unless you've been living under a rock that doesn't have digital cable, none of this is news to you. Maybe the next topic isn't either, but its significance has only recently reached my awareness, and I am compelled to speak on it. There is a new paradigm shift in the works.
Well-known services like Google Video and YouTube, and some lesser-known-but-I'm-compelled-to-mention-them-because-I'm-friends-with-the-guy-who-runs-them websites like Vimeo allow free subscribers to post video clips of anything they want, viewable by anyone with an internet. What's remarkable is how quickly this has taken off.
All it takes is a bit of luck, a bit of stage presence, the ability to discern the fickle tastes and desires of the internet population, and a webcam, and you can lip-synch to T.A.T.U. in your bedroom to an innumerable audience. Seriously, this phenomenon has spawned an entire demographic of E-List celebrities*** who are, as we speak, on the cusp of becoming household names.
They have the potential to be as big as the Kelly Clarksons and Richard Hatches of yester-season. But here is the critical difference: everyone before this point had the help of some powerful, largely funded enterprise pushing them into the limelight. But from here on out, Jane and Joe Schmo, with the help of the internet, can reach an audience of hundreds of thousands, if not millions, by themselves.
Some notable internet celebrities:
(1) The sheltered hottie, and YouTube's heroine (though almost certainly a fake... a corporate-sponsored ploy getting ready to spring some kind of viral marketing wave; honestly the best counter-argument to the argument I'm presenting in this post), Bree, better known as lonelygirl15.
(2) The elusive ninja known only as 'the ninja', from Ask a Ninja.
Well, really, that's all.
Still, it's a start.
Granted, the viewing audience at present consists primarily of preadolescent boys with no social skills... but consider this: that's who used to dominate all the internet dating sites in the late '90s, and today everyone's doing it, ugly, beautiful, shy, popular, young, old. Everyone is doing today what only the nerds were doing yesterday. The same thing's going to happen with the YouTube revolution. In five years, every single one of the collective you reading this blog will have your own free internet TV show, for lack of a better term. As will I have mine. The difference is, people will be watching yours. Such is the way of the ever-accelerating pace of the entertainment industry.
Now, if only I could manage the ever-accelerating pace of blogging in the meantime...
*You know... A, for 'actual'.
**You know... B, for 'billionaire'.
***You know... E, for 'internet'.
Thursday, August 24, 2006
My eyes are burning.
Usually that happens on golf day, where I opt for contact lenses in lieu of glasses. Because it's sunny here in southern California, and sunglasses are hard to wear over glasses glasses.
But today, it's from an upwards of seven hours of staring at a CRT. There's almost no work that can be done at the shop today, so I'm stuck passing the time tete-a-tete with the internet. Google SketchUp is a wicked awesome thing, let me tell you. It's the way Google does CAD. Yeah, I didn't see that one coming either, but I'm still holding out for Google InsuranceFraud (beta).
Now the flash games are playing inside my head when I close my burning eyes.
It's been a good day.
Friday, August 18, 2006
Okay, okay, I know.
Burst of activity followed by a month-and-a-half hiatus. Like every time I get back into working out. At least I'm still eating right.
This post be naught but a queueing up of ideas for future blog entries. I shall elaborate in the future:
SHELBY THREE AND THE HARMONY
NEW BLOGGER INTERFACE/FORMAT
To the zero of you who know that I'm blogging again, Stay tuned...
Friday, June 30, 2006
Okay, so I spent a little time describing a few t-shirt ideas in a recent post of mine. As a picture is worth way more words than however many words I used to describe it, I made up an illustration for my favorite, Idea #2.
Wanna see it?
Well, too bad, here it is anyway:
Now come on, that's some funny shit.
I'll make up images for the others after I return from New York. Piece!
P.S. The above graphic is Copyright 2006 by Kevin Savino-Riker. Go ahead, give me a reason to sue you... commie bastard.
Wow, that didn't take long.
The homophone has done it again - I have now successfully merged my new Shaw Electric business cellphone number with my personal number, which makes my "The V" two distinct phones in one physical package.
So, the running tally of features is now:
- All the standard cellphone auxiliary functions - Scheduler/Dayplanner, Calculator, Text Notepad, Audio Note Recorder, etc.
- Digital Still Camera
- Digital Movie Camera
- MP3 Player
- Portable Movie Player
- Spanish/English Translator and Dictionary
- Gaming Platform
- GPS Navigation System
- Another Cellphone
So, I have a pal from college who is (1) Hysterical Or Maybe Insane, (2) Creative, (3) Entrepreneurial. One of the companies he and his partners run is BustedTees, a website which apparently sells t-shirts that are broken. Luckily (or is it peculiarly), every BustedTees shirt I've bought or received as a gift has been fully-functional. I guess they have a slacker in charge of quality control.
Anyway, the t-shirts invariably feature humorous graphics and captions, typically 'retro' and understatedly ironic. All of them are hilarious. Even cooler than that is that they accept suggestions from the populace for new shirt ideas, and it is on this note that I'd like to comment today.
I've had a few ideas rolling around in my head for a while for what I believe would be funny t-shirt ideas, even if they aren't busted. Since Prose Justice is back in business, and since I long ago pledged to make this place an additional repository for my creative gushings, I figure I'll put the ideas out in the open, see what people think, and when I get the chance, make a few illustrations to show a rough draft of what I think the shirts could look like.
The following are presented chronologically from date of conception.
A silhouette of a person tilting his head back, raising a bottle of liquor to pour it into his mouth.
Caption is something to the effect of "Drinking - lifts your spirits". I was going for the pun here, since while drinking alcohol can indeed elevate ones mood, the action of raising a liquor bottle over your head is quite literally lifting spirits. Not too funny, I know. I'm willing to put all ideas up here, not just the ones I think will get good reactions.
Posterized image of Castro, wearing a pair of old-school DJ-style headphones.
Caption is "Hi Fidelity". I feel this is funny because if we assume the headphones are of sufficiently high fidelity, then their being worn by a man named Fidel is an example of what is potentially the highest fidelity observable in the natural universe.
Communist Russian propaganda-poster styling, perhaps showing a statue, or at least a strong figure, holding a fork. Caption, written in a very Soviet-esque font, "Cannibalism - For the People". Play on words, self-explanitory. Oh, fine. It's a common sentiment that Communism is For the People. Cannibalism, which sounds (phonetically, not ideologically) an awful lot like Communism, is also, in fact, for the people.
The fact that both ideas #2 and #3 were rooted in, um, alternative governmental models, is entirely coincidental. I am as capitalist as they come; it's just hard to recognize me without all the money.
So, in self-critique, I think #2 is the best candidate for BustedTees, as its particular brand of humor is analogous to what is typically featured on the website, and in my opinion is the funniest of the three. #1 needs a little work. Okay, a lot of work. #3 Would maybe be better destined for a site like T-ShirtHell, but would need to be made even more tasteless (<--Unintentional Pun #1)*. All in all, it's a good exercise to try and be creative outside the scope of what you are used to. If anyone's reading this, let me know how I've done!
*I'm going to start keeping track of the unintended puns that appear in my writing. That is to say, I have to recognize that it's a pun only after I've written it. Oh, in the case of this one, the pun isn't in the sentence, it's because it's in reference to the shirt about eating people, which is in rather bad taste. P.S. That was the same pun right there.
Thursday, June 29, 2006
Okay, two posts in one day... so it's a really slow day at work.
Actually, that's not at all true; I have a lot to do, in fact. I am, however, in a slump where I cannot continue my efforts until the battery recharges in my bomb-ass wire labeler. How better to pass the time than resume posting at the prolific pace I've set for myself since waking up this sleeping beast?
This post is a showcase for my cellphone, the LG VX9800. I'd take a picture of it, but my only accessible camera is on the phone itself. My reasoning behind this unabashed exhibition of material excess? Well, mainly it's a "screw you" to the people who make fun of the fact that the phone is quite a bit larger than they think it needs to be. I'm talking to Ray Ward, Darren Miles, and Joe Farnsworth here. Others may talk too, but I live with these three, so I get it on a regular basis primarily from them.
While my last few phones were sleek and streamlined, the "The V", as those cool cats from Verizon call it, is a little larger. See for yourself:
This thing is, according to my friends, so large as to exude a certain gayness, which lends it to being referred to as the Homophone.
Well, I'm going to come right out and say it: I'm rather proud of my homophone and I fully support its lifestyle. In a form of rebuttal to my gay-bashing hatemonger housemates, I will use Prose Justice to keep people updated on the growing capabilities of this remarkable piece of fruity hardware.
As of two days ago, my "The V" played the roles of:
- All the standard cellphone auxiliary functions - Scheduler/Dayplanner, Calculator, Text Notepad, Audio Note Recorder, etc.
- Digital Still Camera
- Digital Movie Camera
- MP3 Player
- Portable Movie Player
- Spanish/English Translator and Dictionary
- Gaming Platform
As of yesterday, it gained the ability to become a:
- GPS Navigation System
So, the key question is this: Considering the vastly flexible and, well, vast capabilities of this device, is my homophone's larger size justified? In my case, totally. I'd much rather have all that functionality in a queerly large package than have to decide which of seven or so separate devices I'd want to have on my person in any given situation.
I plan to keep a running tally going on the blog as I download new apps to the homophone. With each new ability I will further evidence the coolness that is my "the V". Note that in technological paradigms I equate usefulness to coolness.
Of course, Ray and co. will quickly point out that coolness and gayness are not mutually exclusive, thus adding 'cool' to my phone will not subtract any homosexual attributes from it.
They will also agree that writing this post is the gayest thing I've ever done.
Okay, so I know I said I wasn't going to contribute anything worthwhile to the blog for some time now because I had all this rebuilding to do. I am not yet done with said rebuilding, yet here I am, ready to impart information. And dare I say it will be 'Content of Any DiscernAble Value to thE Reader' (first referred to in Post-Previous and with some creative capitalization and incorrect spelling, hereafter acronymized down to CADAVER). I'll just jump right in. Don't judge*.
While oft-noted as a bane to we, the Busier Than Anyone Else of modern society, jury duty is a vital aspect of our legal system that has always fascinated me. I secretly longed for the day that I would receive my summons and be called upon to take active part in determining the legal fate of another.
Now, this romantic desire of mine was based upon what I now feel was an outdated and naive impression of what jury duty was, namely: being in a jury. How wrong I was.
You see, I finally got my summons and I have been entered into the system. The emerald curtain has been drawn and I have seen the mechanisms at work in this legal hodgepodge. That I have survived it yields a new desire to spread the truth to all you who don't know. If you don't want to know the truth, DO NOT read the following line, for it will tell you exactly what jury duty has become -
Answering Machine Practice.
"Jury duty" entails the folowing:
- Receive a document in the mail with the words 'JURY SUMMONS' in large print and a phone number buried in a sea of small print.
- Call the number on the instructed date (weeks after you receive the summons).
- Listen to the "entire message" - this was explicitly commanded at the beginning of the message.
- The "entire message" is a very long way of saying, "If you've called today, please call back tomorrow after 5pm."
- I'll let you get away with thinking this will only happen once; I did.
- Call back the next day after 5pm. Listen to the new message.
- The "new message" is the same as the last message, with the distinct difference that it now tells you to call back the next day.
- After my second callback I came to the insight that this was answering machine practice.
- After my fifth callback I realized, "You don't even get to leave a message! It's just Listening to Answering Machine Practice!"
I'd go on, but such recursion has no place in this blog. I'm here to warn you, not beat you to death with it.
That there are people out there who think we need answering machine practice, and that they are the same people who filter the innocent from the guilty, almost hurts my brain to think about.
I've used phones longer than I've had mastery of (or even an introduction to) the english language. Who hasn't been on the phone with a proud mother who loves to put her naturally incoherent infant on the line to share the babbling? We've all heard it. We at that age were likely to have been forced to do it by our parents. Some of us have done it with our (read: their) own children (implies: to me, grr.). What's my point? Phones are as natural to gens X and Y as are toilets, and toilets are as natural as butts in this part of the world. We understand phones already. We understand their associated technologies as easily. Even the complicated ones like automated customer service. We hate that one, but we certainly understand it.
I don't know how long Orange County is going to need my valuable services, and I don't know how they intend to compensate me. I just hope the poor guy, guilty or otherwise, got through this quirky little system and got what he deserves. And in the end, I'm glad I could be of help.
*If you found a cadaver in your house... go ahead, tell me you wouldn't show it to anyone.
Wednesday, June 28, 2006
Well, I know I'm "blogging", as long as you care to define "blogging" as "making noticeable changes to the blog" and not as "adding content with any discernable value to the reader". I just don't feel like I'm "blogging" right now, because I need to use the second definition. Unfortunately, it will still be a little while before I can do anything of value. Right now I'm in Phase: Dusting Off Occluded Internals.
Buffing out the wear marks of dormancy takes a little more work than I thought it would have. Turns out lots of image links are invalid; I have to figure out the new urls for files on the server out here in Cali. I also have a few new blog features to which I need to get accustomed.
What it amounts to, is that this entry is actually one more piece of filler, necessary because I need to post a picture into the entry. This will determine the location of my new profile photo. I could just put it up temporarily and remove the pic after I find out where Blogger hosted it, but why bother? There's nothing wrong with a little redundant representation.
Regardless, here's the pic, the new poster-child face of Prose Justice. This picture really sums up how I feel right now.
Really, I promise I'm almost done returning the blog to seaworthiness. Just a little more tweaking and I'll be ready to jump in head first. Maybe typing-fingers first.
Tuesday, June 27, 2006
It seems that blogger now supports full sensory immersion, with the addition of pix blogging from mobile devices. This of course ignores the senses of smell, taste, touch, and psychokinesis. Nerd. Oh well, here's a snippet of what's keeping me occupied at work.
Monday, June 26, 2006
Apparently I didn't give a shit.
In fact, I seem to have not given a shit WAY harder than I ever gave a shit during the active life of the blog. My last post was to celebrate Prose Justice's 1st birthday, one year and sixteen days ago. Over half my blog's life, spent in hibernation. Since I last posted, I've moved to southern California and gotten a new job, a new car, and a wicked tan.
Well, work has been slow enough lately to indicate an upcoming trend that might just allow me to instill some new zest into this dormant beast. What was once a budding berth of infant literary genius has become a comatose and malnurished toddler, which may now become a once-upon-a-time-budding-berth-of-infant-literary-genius-has-become-a-comatose-and-malnurished toddler-with-the-will-to-overcome-its-past.*
On an absolutely-unrelated note,
Here's to the good intentions of today: May they flourish and grow into the good of tommorow.
See you next year!**
*Because, I'll be writing posts again. Now that I think about it, that's an awfully long description. Sorry, little rusty.
**Not to say I won't see you before then. Just covering my bases.