My Bleeding Brains

August 26, 2009

on domesticity, etc

Filed under: Uncategorized — eeplebert @ 5:54 pm

Not long ago I remember reading Katy ramble from yonder down south about amusing herself with household chores while her husband was away with the Marines.

So it goes that I’m scooping cat litter, running the dishwasher, dumping coffee grounds, emptying lint traps, scrubbing the sink, and readying the mop. Even if the kitchen floor has no more square feet than the average office cubical.

Contrary to the example of domestic pioneers Donna Reed or June Cleaver – I’m doing it to the soundtrack backdrop of or RadioGlitch or any of my handful of favorite drum-and-bass or electro streams. But I’m making like my mama taught me and not just getting it all done, but keeping it all done.

Earlier on I was dancing around like a big white idiot singing along with Weezer’s song ‘Getchoo’ among others. This was from a fan-made edit of demos and album cuts pasted together attempting to approximate Weezer’s never-made 2nd album rock opera Songs from the Black Hole.

I remember going through some emotional abuse from a long-since ex and having Weezer’s Pinkerton album be a support in a way I’m not sure most women would understand. Maybe I was just proto-emo. But those songs are seared into my brain like most of Nirvana’s Bleach and NIN’s Pretty Hate Machine.

Maybe if I’d had a father around the house more often in my youth – instead of just mom and grandma, I might be out there fixing cars or jumping out of planes with guns strapped to me. But I think I’m beginning to get satisfied that I’m a singer, a drummer, a deejay, a sampler, and all kinds of stuff we don’t have good words for yet.

When I was in high school and before, I could daydream for hours about what might be, what could be. Today I recognize that I deal a lot more with what is – thanks to building something important in the now.

Most of my friends from high school and college are now married people. (And these days who doesn’t know someone who’s been through a divorce long before 30?) Most of those married friends are parents now – I almost feel left out. Almost.

This morning I’m raising my coffee cup in a toast, a hopeful thought to my wife, and all our spouses/mates/partners in general. My grandparents and several aunts-and-uncles have been good examples of managing long-term give-and-take in what society calls marriage. I’m thankful for their examples, however limited my memory of them may be these many years later.

I feel that the government shouldn’t be able to tell people when their union, their partnership, with another human being is valid or not. So I wish if we could come to some agreement that health care is a basic human right in America, that we can come to agree that love is where we find it. Government can recognize unions, and churches can have marriage if they’re so picky about it. /end soapbox

This morning I’m shuffling through the housework so I can take a few pics of the new place looking pristine for friends requesting them. Being so far from most of the friends and family, I want to share what most of them will never be able to afford to come and see.

After the pics I’ll get to the rest of my hobbies, duties, or whatever it is that I find to pass the time between the ever-present and ever-tenuous job hunt.

I ‘ve scanned a few friends blogs in my daily reading. I just discovered via Rachel Maddow’s wikipedia entry why I seem to agree with her worldview more often than not. She’s just barely got two years on me. /again wit the lolz

I can take Olbermann most of the time, but sometimes he trots right up to that line where he’s just about as hyperbolic and vitriolic as those he’s arguing against. I like tRMs b/c Rachel seems to be doing more actual reporting, and keeping her tone quite civil – to my leftist/anarchist ears.

I’m out – got a long list of interesting pursuits: the never-ending pursuit of actually making some chiptune music, scanning grandma’s old slides, gaining inspiration from the pages of Make and 2600, cutting up more samples and loops, making little audio collages to amuse my wife and myself, waiting till no one’s around to play my casio amateurishly SK-1 along with my music, laying down scratch vocals for a remix contest

– and continuing to adjust to life halfway across the country from the new kentucky bluegrass of Target Field where the Minnesota Twins will play next season outdoors.


August 13, 2009

on the concept of digital seeds (from Make)

Filed under: Uncategorized — eeplebert @ 8:29 pm

I’ve been let down in the quality of most print publications in the past few years. I appreciate No Depression moving to a book-a-zine format. The most recent Adbusters I held in my own two hands was smaller, book-sized. You’d think they woulda discovered that was more aesthetically pleasing than the big wannabe rolling-stone size they’ve favored for years.

Spin’s still worth it occasionally, Rolling Stone I could take it or leave it, but I’ve digressed far enough. My favorite remaining print pubs are 2600 and Make.

In a recent Make I – amongst the yawn-worthy steampunk fanboyism – read about the concept of a digital seed box…holding source files for use by their User – as an altar-like central feature in homes of the future.

Suited to the user, perhaps a little diorama of actions figures could center around the item…a usb stick, usually, but probably something similarly small, convenient, perhaps/hopefully shielded against against EMP. That’s where the files live. That little 32GB about the size of your pinky fingernail.

[As a little aside, if we’re moving towards quantum computing and molecular memory as fast as some tech-gazers claim we might be, perhaps magnetism – the crucial vulnerability of most silicon-based electronics – will become a thing of the past sooner rather than later.]

This digital seed would be where we drew our music from, as said in the article, stored books in open document formats (based loosely on pdf) for on-demand printing at our local co-op cafe/press/anarchist haven.

You know, the sorta hands-on place every community should have where you can take spanish classes, learn about building solar water heaters, play bingo with the seniors, have a tiny communal garden patch, and mix your latte with an exercise bike…

I’ve been drooling over the notion of getting all my sundry backup cds and dvds onto a giant server HD, since drive prices keep falling. Taking my first steps toward a Master seed.

I spent the good part of a morning the other day, as said in another post, digging through my digital record crate looking for which damn disc I had stashed the day’s elusive bits on.

Suddenly I’m looking at my massive 6’x5′ cd rack, the top shelf full of DVDs, and various stacks of media around the room, as seeds for what they might become, not just what they are.

My amassed music collection is rife with sample-worthy bits. And if listening to Mark De Gli Antoni in Soul Coughing (and since) is any indication…no one has to know where your samples come from if you’re endowed with any creativity.

Chop a guitar riff out of a song, speed it up or slow it down, perhaps change the pitch of the whole thing or just a note or two…it doesn’t take much to take whatever you hear and make it your own somehow.

I was listening to Brian Henneman and Uncle Tupelo’s song ‘Get Down, River’ the other day and thought how sweet it would be if someone took the footage of Summer Glau dancing from an episode of Firefly and syncronised some of her movements to the song, slowing or speeding as needed…maybe even mirroring and cropping some scenes to make it flow better.

I haven’t done it yet…but that doesn’t mean I won’t. If you do, let me know. 🙂

Regardless of how capitalism and the allegedly free market are coughing and sputtering when it comes to Fair Use and sample based music culture, this is how it’s always been done. Even when there were no recording devices of any kind, inspiration flowed from finished work to finished work just as it does now – and always has.

While I’m sure Joss Whedon would laugh to see River getting down to the Bottle Rockets song, I just bet someone at Fox would slap a C&D on you if the video got enough attention, despite the fact that no one would make a single shining penny from it.

What brought me to the page to relate this semi-obvious bit of mental calisthenics is that I’m starting not just to see the source mp3s/aacs and videos, resting quietly on their dvds or hard drives, as seeds.

But I’m seeing everything, through my camera, my sampler, my computer, my scanner, my ears, my eyes…as something I can put on my palette and mix into my art. It’s the concept of American freedom expressed in the realm of ideas.

I don’t have to pay (or bow to) anyone for anything I create unless I’m gonna make a profit from it, and I didn’t create it entirely myself.

And all that which I’ve absorbed, viewed, purchased, owned, shared, downloaded, consumed, and which has inspired me…it’s not just ‘fair game’, it’s *enthusiastic* for me to participate…sitting there just waiting.

August 12, 2009

off 2 boot camp

Filed under: Uncategorized — eeplebert @ 3:50 pm

I think I’m gonna try installing some version of windoze on my mac…if I can find enough spare gigs.

I wish my itunes library weren’t taking up 60-70% of my hd. I could wish for a terabyte drive in my mac mini too…doesn’t mean it’s gonna happen.

Of course, I upgraded the ram in it without trouble. I exhaustively reviewed how-tos and faqs before doing it. The HD wouldn’t be that much harder, just expensive. I could get a terabyte usb chunk for <$100.

But the 80gb 3.5in ata/usb drive I have now is a whiny, noisy bastard. The more expensive 2.5in ‘laptop’ drive would go inside the mini, and be quieter. Oh, but for the lack of loot…*sigh*

When it comes to win on a mac with an intel processor, the ‘boot camp’ method is supposed to be far superior to an xp install with a small footprint in virtualPC used to be on a G4 powerPC. If I can find the disk space, I’m gonna try running win on my mac. There’s still a pitiful few apps that have yet to be equal on the mac.

Also, I’m ‘consulting’ and gathering info from eighteen different directions on medical apps and utilites for the palm platform.

Learning my way around an entirely new region of the planet is a persistent challenge lately. I’m also pursuing the art of noise in a few different apps and dimensions. Maybe more than just a few edits will come of it.

Coincidentally, has anyone heard Mos Def’s ‘Quiet Dog Bite Hard’? Wow…

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