Archive for the ‘Quotes’ Category

I haven’t seen “The Other Guys.” Like Wahlberg. Like Ferrell. But the trailer looked hideous. Now, however, I might have to break down if the whole movie is like this scene, which seems to be an exercise in who refuses to break onscreen while Ferrell continues to improvise circles around everyone. The entire scene you can see both guys barely holding it together. I’m guessing oh, fifteen, twenty takes to get this exchange?

Case in point: the “Plums” scene in Eastbound & Down. Robinson and McBride are helpless while Ferrell just has his way with them (NSFW).

Read Full Post »

“A million people die in Iraq, and all these people go, ‘Hey, as long as it doesn’t happen over here.’ But it is over here! It’s over here=over there! It’s people you don’t know, who were born somewhere else, who fucking got jacked.

You get trapped in that whole idea of ‘this is my team, these are my people.’ And someone fucking plays a country music song,  and throws up a flag. I’m in. Fuck it. Feels good. Feels good to be in, doesn’t it?”

I haven’t always been a Joe Rogan fan- his Carlos Mencia call-out was pretty epic. But this video definitely puts me in his camp. Do I believe that Obama is equal to Bush? God no. I believe that Obama will be a transformational two-term President. (Who’re the Republicans gonna run? Huckabee? Romney? Pawlenty? PALIN? Please.)

But questions being asked are never a bad thing. And 90 percent of his points are spot-on.

And his points on Eisenhower’s “Military Industrial Complex” speech are so apt as to be goddamn depressing. Roll on, great river, roll on.

Read Full Post »

Scott Thill did a nice interview with Alan Moore over at Wired, in which he discusses a number of things, primarily his Zine, Dodgem Logic. Mr. Moore seems to be melding the “global/local” movement, into something he calls lobel– basically, producing his ‘zine, marketing it globally (via Mr. Moore’s already considerable fame and interest in his “brand”), then taking the profits and donating proceeds to local charities. Pretty cool.

The following observation was what struck me:

…I would like to see a situation where people finally got fed up with celebrity culture. Where people started this great democratic process in the arts where more and more people were just producing individually according to their own wants or needs.

It is possible in this day and age to make very low-budget films, using technology that the pioneers of cinema would have killed for that is relatively cheaply available down at your local electronics store. The means of making music or art are more in the hands of the people than they ever have been before. I think it would be great to see an end to the big entertainment companies in whatever industry, whether it be music, cinema or comic books.

I’d like to see people actually get angry about the quality of the material that they are having shoved down their throats. It can’t be good for us. And I would like to see people responding to that by basically following the old maxim that if you want a job done right you do it yourself.

This, to me, is what’s terrifying Hollywood (and rightfully so)- why watch King of Queens (I realize the pointedness of that question) when that kid with the weekly hilarious show he shoots in his garage in Iowa has another episode up? And he’s sponsored by his local bike shop? And it’s funnier (albeit not as nicely lit) than any clunky sitcom on tv?

Read Full Post »

I consider this to be one of Water’s minor masterpieces; it echoes Dylan at his best, really. Both choruses echo ’round my head quite regularly whenever I see a weepy, bloated pundit selling a kinder, gentler fascism and brand of Christianity that has nothing to do with empathy, love or truth:

When they overrun the defenses
A minor invasion put down to expenses
Will you go down to the airport lounge
Will you accept your second class status
A nation of waitresses and waiters
Will you mix their martinis
Will you stand still for it
Or will you take to the hills

Will you mix their martinis? That’s a f***er of a question that’ll keep you up at night.

The production and arrangement is criminally 80’s, including the guitar solo, but I can overlook that because of the amazing writing. It’s really one of my favorite songs of Mr. Waters’.

Read Full Post »

21 Days to Develop a New Habit


We are what we repeatedly do. – Aristotle

UPDATE 09.29.09: Apparently, 21 days is a myth. It’s actually more like 30, and some say as long as 66 days (Leo at Zen Habits suggests 30- great post on it here). Regardless, pretty exiting that you can get your neurons to create new pathways in as little as two months.

Perhaps the reason you can’t teach a old dog new tricks is that very few people are interested in small, incremental concerted efforts to change. That’d be my theory. Fo sho.

Read Full Post »


Wired has a great little article from March about Brian Eno’s art school days here. A couple of things struck me about the article:

  • The deliberate introduction of randomness in Brian Eno’s life, and the idea of changing artistic and social roles to facilitate new and interesting art. Eno’s art professors would have the students assume characters that were out of their comfort zone, to elicit reactions that were of them “playing a role.” Much like the old Oscar Wilde quote (“Give a man a mask and he’ll tell you the truth”), if you give students a mask or role to play, they’ll create new, “true” art, that is, true to the role they’re playing.
    Reminds me of Prince and Tom Waits adopting characters to get themselves out of their rote songwriting modes. Also reminds me of long-form improv training, of getting yourself “out of your head” and comfort zone to spur yourself to new risk taking.
  • How much this pointed Eno in the direction of Oblique Strategies, which is a great tool for breaking yourself out of artistic ruts. (Great PDF of printable cards here.)

I had a great instructor in art school (“You want fries with that?”) who used to tell us, “You’re only doing your job as a creative if you are constantly on the verge of getting fired.” Which seemed imminently true to me at the time- the profs who were safe, and needed their jobs had the worst work. The ones who were devil-make-care were actually  selling work and working at ad agencies, rather than writing bullshit artspeak proposals for federal grants.

Read Full Post »


Andrew Sullivan’s coverage of the Iranian “election” debacle and the subsequent protests and fascist crackdown by the Revolutionary Guard has been truly admirable. Something is happening in Iran, indeed.

You can’t force democracy down the barrel of a gun, the way the Neocons think. All this weekend, as all hell is breaking loose in Iran, I’ve had a line from Peter Gabriel’s “Biko” running through my head:

You can blow out a candle/But you can’t blow out a fire/Once the flame begins to catch/The wind will blow it higher.

There are young people in Iran (and all over the world) who are sick of the tyranny of old ideas, who want to be part of something hopeful, not repressive and brutal. While we’re worried about whether Adam Lambert is gay or indulging Sarah Palin’s shameless mock outrage at Letterman, people like this are fighting for their lives and freedom in Tehran.

One wonders if this was Obama’s long game: to engage the hopeful, and young, and through his Middle East address present them with a choice of continued submission to tyranny, or to forge their own future, much as the USA has done. “May you live in interesting times.” It doesn’t get much more interesting, y’all.

I wholeheartedly suggest following Andrew’s blog as well as Huffington Post’s coverage. It’s not as if Fox is gonna cover it; they’re too busy praying to God that Obama fails. Party first, country last, right guys?

Read Full Post »

I was discussing writing with a friend of mine, and thought about a quote I heard one time: “Writing is revenge.” I looked it up, and although I couldn’t find it, I did find a couple of other great ones:

The best revenge is not to become like the one who wronged you.
-Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, Meditations

what sweeter revenge against this world & its injuries
could you imagine than lounging in bed with the one
you love?….I think most men are like me in this regard.
-sean elder

The grudge you hold on to is like a hot coal that you intend to throw at someone, only you’re the one who gets burned.

-Siddhartha Gautama

What though the field be lost?
All is not lost; th’ unconquerable will,
And study of revenge, immortal hate,
And courage never to submit or yield.
-John Milton, Paradise Lost. Book i. Line 105.

Courage never to submit or yield. That’s so incredibly Braveheart-baddass. I can hear Sir Galahad from the Python’s Holy Grail:

Sir Galahad: Couldn’t I just submit for a little while, and then I’ll get back to the immortal hating and the unconquerable willing?

Sir Lancelot: No. Back to work. What part of ‘Never’ are you having trouble with?

Read Full Post »

Some pretty salient points on the “Drug War,” and absolutely spot-on in his critique of Capitalism as Social Framework:

David Simon:

Capitalism is a wonderful engine, but how we mistook it for a social framework for how to build a just society and interpreted it that way is just incredible.

There’s also a couple of great points on Overtime, which is the internet-only after thought:

Read Full Post »

Because really, who’s more qualified to talk about Jazz than Paul Shirley?

All kidding aside, Shirley’s article touches on something that I’ve thought for years, and articulates it pretty well. Namely, there’s a number of sports that you have to have played (in my case, poorly) to really love them. Baseball is chess. I’ve known so many people that have said to me over the years, “Baseball is soooo boring.”

And it can be. But not if you love the team, and the Zen-like day-in, day-out grind of baseball that is so much like life: Today was a good day, to quothe Ice Cube. On days that you get slapped around like Pacquiao beat Hatton, you think, “There’s always tomorrow.” You have slumps. You have streaks. Sometimes nothing goes your way. Sometimes everything does.

I think that’s why baseball interviews are so trite, like Crash coaching Nuke in Bull Durham. Because so much of daily living is trite: “We’ll get ’em tomorrow.” “Take ’em one day at a time.” “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.”

Where was I? Oh, yeah: Paul Shirley on Jazz. I think his basic premise is correct: basketball is best appreciated by people who played it, even if it’s only pickup Saturday basketball. Jazz is best understood by people who really get music, or have at least played an instrument. Which reminds me of a Itzhak Perlman quote.

When a woman said to him after a concert: “I’d give anything to be able to play like you.” “How about twelve hours a day?” he responded. I’m murdering the quote, but the idea stands. Jazz is a rarefied art form (despite my classical musician example).

How’s that for a meandering, poorly written-and-constructed post? Eat it, Hunter S. Thompson! I rule!

NBA PLAYOFFS UPDATE: I think the Nuggets are going to have the Lakers for breakfast in 6. That is, if they make it past the Rockets, but Houston’s pretty depleted after losing Yao. Full Disclosure: I’d love to see the Celtics survive and beat the Cavs, just like Nuggets over Lakers.

But I won’t be surprised at all if it’s Lakers/Cavs, ultimately. Kobe v. LeBron is what the NBA wants.

Read Full Post »

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs

I think this is the toughest thing in life to do. Reminds me a bit of the Desiradata, attributed to Max Ehrmann.

Read Full Post »