Let's Do This Together -OR- I Need Your Help

There's something bothering me. And that thing is an unfinished project. Sure there are projects that must be abandoned. I'm not that rigid, some projects deserve premature burning. But some should be reconsidered.

Look here and come right back:
Zero to A Hundred

I started a project with some people called Zero to A Hundred (02100 for short). People, unfortunately, got distracted and disinterested. Hell, even I forgot about it for months. But I want to complete this project. And today is as good a day as any to re-fire that hookah. THIS IS AN OPEN INVITATION.

The gist of 02100 is I wanted to put together a collection photographs of people--contextual portraits--aged 0-100 on one Web log page. My crack team got off to a terrific start then people got distracted and disinterested; it got too hard for some. I think we have around 40 slots filled. That leaves "only" 60 to go. Let's not let the 40 die...I say, let's do this thing! Really. Let's do this! Somebody commit to the art, goddammit! I'm getting tired of doing everything myself. Let's be our own art history.

Here's what YOU NEED TO DO. Go to the site and fill some slots:
1) Join as a 02100 principal: I'll give you the keys to the site so you can post your own images. Principals get tons of accolades.

2) Submit as 02100 project guest: I'll take whatever you have (new photos are best, at least ones that represent current subject age). Send me an email and I'll post it for you.

It's so easy. Too easy. It's embarrassingly easy. I couldn't make it any easier for you unless I did it all by myself. Submit to: ty[at]middlespace[dot]net or for those who know, my other emailings address.

Let's do this this thing together!

I've Seen That Movie Too

The Infinite Loop of Cause & Effect - Action & Outcome Synchronized

Yesterday I Had The Talk® With My Kid

When I walk home from school with my child we generally improvise our route. Sometimes we go around one of the three lakes, sometimes we don't. We generally let the day, the moment, the wind dictate our pathways. Heck, I let her pick the route most days.

Yesterday we happened across this tiny pocket park called "Inspiration Park."

Oh boy.

As a result of our route, speaking of improvisation, I had to have The Talk® with my child. And when I say The Talk® I ain't talking about sex or drugs or crime or race or any of that nonsense. I'm talking about the 9/11® talk. Jesus H. Christ®! The round the terrorists won! And special shout-out and thanks to the City of Gaithersburg Parks & Field Department. Thanks a lot, guys! Inspiration Park, indeed.

If you read no further in this post, just know this: You think 9/11® was difficult eight years ago? You think it was crazy and incomprehensible? You think it was emotional to watch that horror on the TeeVee? Well, try to explain that shit to your 7.5 year-old who cannot be bullshitted. The terrorists attack of September 11, 2001 was some crazy fucked-up shit, right? Try explaining that crazy fucked-up shit, the whole thing, aloud sans preparation, to someone who has zero knowledge of the event. Try it. I'll wait.


Well? How'd that go for you?

I was just trying to walk home from school. We weren't even going to do homework. We were going to carve pumpkins for Halloween! Imagine the shift in tone when my kid read the Inspiration Park plaque in its entirety--not that I'd shield her from that sort of thing, I was just caught off guard (like the entire USA on 09.11.01)--when my girl asked, "What happened on September 11, 2001? A lot of people died? What happened, daddy?"

Oh boy.

But you know what? As a parent, you can never shy away from tough topics. At least I don't. I jumped right in and I'm certain I did just fine but that conversation must have triggered another TGA because I remember very little of it. I am guessing that my side probably went something like this:
Ty/dad: "Uh, well, er...some uh, people from another part of the world, ya' know? Was, uh, mad at America for our foreign uh policies and uh, he-he, and, uh...they made some pilots of some airplanes stop flying their airplanes--you know, sorta like switched seats and stuff--and those guys flew the planes into, well, these, uh, really tall buildings in New York called the World Trade towers, and about 3,000 people died, and, uh, you want some ice cream for dinner, sweetie?"
There were tons of follow-up questions that I cannot remember answering. I do remember that she deduced that, "That behavior is definitely against the law. Did those guys go to jail?"
Ty/dad: "Jail?! Not really. But you're right, that was really, um, bad behavi--they didn't go to jail because they the crash..also. Uh. There's a concept called martyr...but that's not important. They kind of felt so mad at America that they thought, errrrrr, they...they wanted to -- so should we carve one pumpkin or two? The guys who, um, flew the planes felt that a squirrel--on the tree?"
I was surprised that she said, "good" that the guys died as a result of their behavior. That was kind of the eye-for-an-eye surprise of the day.

I also remember that later that night my friend, Benjamin, suggested that maybe I could have started with Pearl Harbor. He was helping me decompress this. He said, "It's history, start with Pearl Harbor." Pearl Harbor? What? Seriously? I hadn't thought about that. That would have just as smooth:
Ty/dad: "Er, well, the Japanese people were, uh, yeah...mad at America...and Hitler. Have you guys talked about Hitler yet? It was like the early 1940s and we had a big war called World War II and Hitler was this guy who...oh wait! Anyway, in Hawaii...the Japanese want hot dogs tonight? So the Japanese people flew their planes, ya' know? into all our Navy ships in Hawaii. How 'bout a puppy?!"
I never felt so much like the "non-judgmental" PC let-them-form-their-own-opinions hippie dad from Santa Cruz in my life. I'm the guy who goes, "Santa?! That's a story to get you to spend all your money." But here I'm all hemming and hawing over terrorism.

Later that night after tuck-in, I get the call, "Daaaady! Can you come up here for a minute?" Oh boy. Guess what she says? She says, "I'm kind of thinking about what we talked about earlier today...and I'm a little scared." Here's what I remember saying:
Ty/dad: "Sweetie. You have nothing to worry about. Everything is okay. I wouldn't let anything happen to you. I promise. That thing happened way before you were even born and nothing like that has happened since. Now go to sleep. Everything is fine. I love you. Goodnight."


Showed Up In Today's Mail

Muse This...Scary Robot

We Are Our Own Art History



How I Sometimes Feel

"The suburbs is a great place to go on look tangents until you're so far out of your surroundings, you look like you've been Photoshopped in."

- Gavs

Harry Callahan

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."

"I think," he said, "that every artist continually wants to reach the edge of nothingness -- the point where you can't go any farther."


Back from Bangkok

Quit Frontin': Stop Pullin' Out the Race Card For No Damn Reason

"Ty, since when is being black an excuse for extreme antisocial behavior. Do you realize that by using that excuse you are not doing people of color any favors."

- @Danny
@Danny's comments on the last post got me to a-thinkin' about things. Serious things. Things like how people can't really point out how mediocre the present administration is without being labeled a racist. Not that I would have voted for the crazy old dude and the crazy VP lady but, seriously, I'm not feeling the Hope and Change. I'm feeling a little bit gypped. The party of power has a congressional majority, nearly filibusterer-proof, and with the mandate-of-the-people via a legitimate vote, and they can't get legislation through? What do they have to do, promise health coverage for our pets too? Anyway...the race card is on my mind.

Ahhh how people throw out that race card. Just because some mope cashier at the LL Bean store or Barnes & Noble or the Apple store asks to see your ID with a credit card purchase (and clearly didn't do it for the white lady who just bought like $4,000 worth of shit) doesn't mean they're doing it because you're black and they're racist. They're doing it because that's what they're supposed to do and they are supposed to do it with everybody (but only remember with black people). It's part of the same script where they offer you the frequent buyer discount membership card too. I know the ID call " for your protection" only demonstrates that the cashier knows ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about consumer protection or credit card fraud, but it doesn't demonstrate racism. It demonstrates that these mopes do what their told. Racism would be if they said, "we don't serve blacks" or called the cops because you even had a credit card.

Likewise TSA isn't insinuating that your boushie, nattily-dressed black ass is some sort of terrorist by "inviting" you for "additional screening", they are doing the job they get paid for: to be assholes to everybody. Look, see that old white woman in a wheelchair getting wanded? And the blond baby in the Plexiglas cube? Doy! Quit upping the ante in race card poker with your bad attitude.

You need to check yourself whenever you feel the urge to vocalize the following words, "Oh, it's because I'm black, huh?" Shit, ask Skip Gates. You can't take that shit back. In 99% of cases you're going to look like an asshole with a chip on your shoulder with low education and bad (racist) movie theater behaviors. You'll just appear to be some weak ass remnant of a civil rights legacy you don't even know about because that curriculum got yanked with Bush's No Child Left Behind. Basically you don't know what the fuck you're talking about and you're making it bad for the next black person in line (like me). When you whip that race card out, you are placing a chip on the cashier's shoulders. Not even Jay-Z can brush that shit off. And it starts the whole thing over because then they're going to ask me for fucking ID with my credit card purchase (and I'm going to explain to them why that's not going to happen).

For the most part the race card (the Ace of Spades, of course) needs stay in the sleeve only to be used for serious and dire emergencies. It is true that there are opportune times to whip that bitch out like when you're trying to get into Yale (improbable) or if it could somehow miraculously keep you from going to jail (which is impossible), or get you laid (more probable), or get you paid (again probably impossible).

Wouldn't it be balls for the Starbucks manager you insist intervene come over and say, "No. It's not because you're black, sir. It's because you're an asshole. We do discriminate against jerks all the time." I know. I've worked retail.

When they ask me ID, I ask to see theirs.

This is an Inside Joke with/for Mary (Only)


Unplanned Guru Summit


Get Your Headphones - tKoL Covered Paige, Pinney

It's Your Old Town from

dpep - The Songs of Daniel Paige and Dick Pinney

by Dickie Powell and Dirk “T.Y.” Pattington (tKoL 2.0) , 2007

Not Mr. Beaky


Poor Mr. Beaky

Penny-lovin' death deniers...
Earth [clicky] Day

Back to the Photographs

Musings on RIP Ty :(

How ya' doing? It's me, Ty (talking to you in the future), in the real life digital flesh. Hi.

Contrary to rumor and speculation I am alive and well. Not sick...normal heartbeat and respiration. Awareness of surroundings and actively processing short and long-term memory. And definitely not dead. Right now I am eating oatmeal (just finishing) and drinking coffee (only just begun) and sitting by the bay window and watching the neighbors walk their dogs, jog, walk babies, and head off for work. The radio is on.

As you know, I've always had a healthy relationship with the concept of morality mortality. I am not religious so I feel no investment in any sort of "heaven." While I am not afraid of death, I am terrified to die. I believe that our morality mortality is all there is. No wings, no halos, no pitchforks, and no brimstone. Like the now deceased Michael Jackson said, "This is the moment; this is it!"

So in my continued musings on morality mortality, I started a project in August on a whim: the the RIP Ty :( Project. I suppose the impetus for this project was the realization that people have a lot of things to say about a person after they die that they never say to that person when they are living. Positive and negative. And no, it wasn't my intention to get people to say nice or complimentary things (like, what, I'd believe that?). But I've notices that people say things that could have been informative in life and becomes just a complete waste of breath post-living. Does that make any sense?

So I made this post. Then I asked people to check it out. I then gave people and myself some time to complete. I opened the project just this past Saturday.

At first I was all, what? The first serious project I ever created in my life and only 18 participants. I hate it when I get hung up on the numbers. I do realize that the exercise is theoretical and nebulous; something very few people would attempt to grasp let alone participate. I understand. But I finally read the comments: [here]

Interesting. And highly informative. Truly. Was it what I expected? Gee, I don't actually know what I expected. I guess I was subconsciously thinking numbers. Anyway, yeah, there were a couple of har-har funny comments but for the most part, I believe I've learned something.

So, I'm not going to stay hung up on numbers but will move forward with what I've learned. And what did I learn? Well I already knew I was a jerk and ADD and barely possessing artistic talents but what I actually learned is the following: If one dedicates oneself to doing a thing they really believe in, they can actually have meaningful impacts on some people.

So, people, let's go do our things! Thank you, people, for teaching.


The Neighbors I Actually Like

See it must be because of the economy or weird psychology or something but lately people around here have been taking in tenants. Renters to live in extra rooms and basements and such.

What sucks about tenants in a quiet, established neighborhood is they don't respect the community, they don't even understand the community. They don't notice the nuances because they weren't here to create the nuances nor are they planning to be here to develop new nuances. They come and they go. The talk to loud. They smoke in all the wrong places. The attract attention for all the wrong reasons. Most seem to be loser drunks and the pathetically displaced who purport to be "between situations" or something. Adults, not 20-somethings. People who should have their shit together. With dogs that should know better. People who we tell our kids not to talk to. People who fuck up my property values. Worst of all, they make their hosts (landlords) look very, very bad.

But, there are still some real jewels like the neighbors I actually like; the people whom I can talk to about the tenants and who agree that we must take up pitchfork and torch and run the tenants into the hills.

Happy New Year!


My Town

So there's been some "discussion" and debate vis-à-vis my sanitized, new urbanist, fake ass, neotraditional, utopia of a neighborhood community and lifestyle. They're saying I'm not "authentic" or "down with the people" and such. [See how I dropped in the academic nomenclature behind your back; like science!]

Just for you, then, I tagged a bunch of posts with the words "My Town" for your birthday weekend enjoyment. I give back to the people large and small and in large and small ways! And, no, by "tagged" I didn't mean I was out spray painting shit, quit being so racist.

Check it (three pages/two jumps). This is what I stand for and what I wouldn't trade with 99% of people. In and around the 'hood:

I'll try to be OFFLINE for most of the weekend so thanks in advance for wishes, etc. Enjoy yo seff! When next we talk, I'll be 44 years-old. I still stand by my cred, yo.

Candidate Forum for Mayor and Two Council Seats

Ha! I know all but one person in this photo (above) from last night's city election candidate forum. These are my people! There's Bret (above) asking a very hypothetical question that none of the five candidates even attempted to answer (the "if you had a hundred dollars" question). Pam's there. Russell & Lyn. Marty. There's Bill. I talked to with the mayor, his lovely wife (yes, I'm voting for his re-election -- he rules). All the candidates shook my swine flu-y, TGA hand. The HOA president had a long chat with me. She loves my photos. She thinks I'm an architect with two children. What?! No, I didn't correct her. People need to dream, don! How'ya doin'?

I know you were expecting my friends to be diverse, young, hip, and ironic (like all of you). Me too! Well these ain't my friends, ladies and gentlemen, these are my neighbors. This is a community! If you were my neighbors I'd be looking for a place to move to because I've seen how some of you live. OK, Bret & Pam are my friends. I love these people.

Two things about My Town:
Thing Number One: My city has zero debt. None. No bonds. Surplus.

Thing Number Two: Property tax rate hasn't changed in over 40 years. Basically the same in my lifetime.
What you got? That's what I thought.

I started shooting pics but the newspaper photogs showed up and I got all shy and stopped (I'm a huge wuss). But I did catch this (below): local businessman lobbying a city council member about...wait for it...sister cities! It's 2010, people! I love these people!

Birthday Gift from Helen: Memory Street

In this morning's emailicans were a bunch of historic scans from Middlespace Cadet in good standing, Helen of Oregon. Eighth through 12th-grade portraits, band pictures and other pages from our yearbooks and such. You know, the yearbooks I either never owned because I was poor or lost years and years ago because I was escaping poverty so quickly that pages were flying behind me all cartoon-style.

Interesting to me is not looking at my portraits (I know, right?), but watching my cadre progress through the years. And "OF COARSE" there are the stories associated with the memories of these people. Stoners. Kisser. Prankers. Brains. Some of these kids I went to school with since 5th grade when I moved to Claremont. Most from eighth...which starts here:

Some of the pages, interestingly, were from our commencement program. While I didn't have any special denotations by my name for honor roll or "CSF Life Member" (that would be your California Scholarship Federation), I was the guy who conducted Giovannini. See? Remember I didn't know I was RealSmart until I was hypermiling it at the University of California. Okay, I've always known I was smart, but competitively academically smart? I had to grow into those shoes. Now I'm snobby as hell.

Of course the photographs above are of people who are now surgeons, business successes, professors, and leaders of people throughout the world. This is the Claremont graduating class of 1983, people!

And then there's me. All I do is drink coffee and listen to Fiery Furnaces all day.

Welcome To TyBlog Dot Com!


The Future of Memory

Why I Live Where I Live Just So You Know

James Here Are Those Ideas I Mentioned

#1: These are the trees here what they look like without contact lenses today:

: Great tits! How many times can you see that on the Wide Web? I read this in the new Harper's today:
"In a cave in the Bukk Mountains of Hungary, great tits were eating hibernating pipistrelle bats; scientists previously suspected tits of eating bats, but the only evidence had been dead bats with wounds that implicated the beaks of tits. When offered sunflower seeds and bacon, the great tits left the bats alone."
...just thought I'd let you know about that for obvious reasons.

: Listening with the headphones to THIS! I made for you today doy:
Ty Hardaway®
Monstering 2009 Just For You™

In The Days Before The Crash (a 2010 Reminiscence)

The irony is - in the days before the crash
people were actually hesitant to get The Vaccine
Back when the U.S. population was just over 300 million
And it seems like yesterday that the riots were on the television
Television - that thing we all did at night
People looking like zombies with Captain Trips burning pharmacies

The irony is - in the days before the crash
people were actually fighting over health care issues
And whether the President was born in real America
Or was black enough or white enough or what have you
The same people with the conspiracy theories succumbed
Evolution proving once and for all salient

The irony is - in the days before the crash
people were so divided on every topic issue notion
The anchors screaming rhetoric tainted bloody
But now we all all understand
Like the first day after
Faith in science trumped - ironically


Quit Frontin': I'm Not the Nanny - This is MY Child

"We may act differen't in some ways
But we're still grouped together like a fuckin' survey"

- from Madness by Deltron 3030

My friend Heidi lives in Texas, just outside of Dallas. She's German and her husband, Chuck, is half-white/half-Japanese (that war-bride thing was large back in the day, shit, white dudes still prefer to go Asian). Whenever I talk to Heidi and Chuck I ask, "why the fuck are you still living in Texas?"

Anyhow, Heidi and Chuck have two kids, 7 and 10. The younger kid looks white like Heidi. The older one looks like...just like grandma. Grandma Miyako, Chuck's mother. The Japanese.

So Heidi's at the grocery store one day and some suburban, giant-headed, Texas cheerleader-looking fat mom-bitch walks up all uninvited and goes, "Ummm-ummm, I just want to say how br-ave you are for adopting a Chinese."

A Chinese.

Heidi was dumbfounded. She couldn't get anything out of her mouth except, "That's my daughter!" Obviously, being totally over-educated like the rest of us, she wanted to give big-hair minivan mom The Skip Gates Lecture about:

  1. ...minding her own damn business
  2. ...these are the children of her very German loins and her husband's very Japanese seed
  3. ...her very smart and handsome husband just happens to be half-Japanese but it doesn't matter that he's "of Japanese decent" "because love is blind!"
  4. know, the bit about minding her own fucking business and poppin' off in the grocery store
But all she could get out was, "That's my daughter!"

Two words: Keith Bardwell.

Here's my point: American isn't binary when it comes to race anymore. I mean it never was, but on the main, it's definitely not black and/or white anymore. There are blacks, whites, Chineses, Japaneses, two kinds of Indians (dot and feather), Mexicans up the ass, and a shitload of other foreign-looking motherfuckers. Given progress and technology and Rosa Parks and Sidney Poitier, all these different people have found ways to hook-up and HAVE BABIES! Even I'm neither black nor white. Look and me (and Obama Hussein): mulattos from back in the day.

Another story: My friend, Ro, is a mulatto too. Her husband is very white. Two kids who look so white too. Of course Ro is always having to say, "No. I do not have time available because I AM NOT A NANNY" like every other day of the week. Presumptions. Makes her mad. She is a goddamn Harvard Economist for G-d sake.

Another another story: When my first and only child was like two weeks old we went on drive to West Virginia, just to get out of the house. We were all at a restaurant and the little girl needed her diaper change. We left the gear in the car so I decided to be heroic dad go change the car. No problem. I try hard and my whole life experience was preparation to be the good daddy. At some point while I was changing my two week-old daughter in the back of our car, I realized that here I was in West goddamn Virgina, a black man fiddling around with a naked and white baby girl. Remember I'm a half-black (Jew) with a all-white wife. The Fear struck me so hard I'm surprised I didn't have a stroke right there. Had some retarded hick sheriff rolled up, I'd probably still be in prison awaiting my execution.

What I'm trying to impart is that that mopetarded tart from Texas was being presumptuous over the fact that Heidi's kid had cute chinky eyes (and even funnier is she speaks perfect English with a slight Texas lilt, tell me Asians with perfect English doesn't still fuck with your head). What I'm trying to say is that we're way past the point where we have to presume, assume, and pair every color with matching color; characteristic with like characteristic.

Like Obama's Attorney General Eric Holder said, "Though this nation has proudly thought of itself as an ethnic melting pot, in things racial we have always been and I believe continue to be, in too many ways, essentially a nation of cowards."

Sorry, Keith Bardwell. You're not only a racist. You're a coward.

Let's become brave again. Quit frontin'!

Untitled (something about teachers scooping ice cream)

Untitled (something about teachers scooping ice cream)

Untitled (something about teachers scooping ice cream)


I Got Your Insider

Right here is an exclusive "insider" tour: [clicky]
Anonymous comment?

This One's for You (yes you: one-on-one style)

So my neighbor Mark stopped by this morning because he wasn't "into going to work quite yet" (it was like 10:00). I'm empathetic like that so I stopped doing my extraordinarily precious work so I could spend some time with him. He's my neighbor. A great guy. One of my dad homies. He told me that he's been studying my blog and is not only finding it "quite enjoyable" but he questions why I'm living here in the D.C. Suburbs. His contention is that I could/should be living somewhere more vibrant, more stimulating, and where my talents could be greater appreciated. LA. NY. SF.

Meh. I really don't like talking about my work and prefer to believe that nobody ever interacts with my interactive media of the World Wide. We went to have some coffee (even though I was drinking coffee when he came and am now riding a caffeine wave). I ain't got not no time for crazy-blog-talk so I started the distraction routine; like harshing on a guy I suspected as being a flasher, discussing the merits of grinding one's own coffee beans, etc. The usual.

I'm happy living the New Urbanist lifestyle. But neighbor Mark still seemed puzzled. I said, "Well, Mark. I get to be the freak here" hoping that would at least end the convo. But Mark says, "you're big enough freak for real freak places." LA. NY. SF. I took that as a compliment but still wanted to avoid the topic.

He went back to discussing my work while I tried to avoid that...I was pointing out people's shoes and talking about Gavin's videos. Anything but my work. He said that there was "so much going on" with my work and that "it seemed very insider." He hinted around it being "too insider" but didn't quite say it. But that's what he said: Insider. I noted that.

I'm hearing that quite a bit lately. Philzy said the same thing: Insider. I guess I do run themes based upon interactions I have with friends and fans. And I can see where it gets a little one-on-one sometimes. But that's the beauty of my interactive media of the World Wide. And while one has to be careful them Gardwitz you can never eat too much candy before a show. Amirite?

So now I have to revisit my whole approach to my interactive media of the World Wide. Do I go more broad and topical like the big Web loggers? Do I open a big, welcoming tent like the Republicans? Should I cast my proverbial net for more fish or be happy with what I'm perfectly comfortable doing and have done forever-fish ("think of the Kingdom of Leisure meets However")? It's a tough choice. It'''s a fork in the road. I'm not very good at broad and topical big tent. My brain is too active for that (both in good and bad ways).

So, you (yes you--I'm writing this directly to you: one-on-one style) can weigh in if you want because I weighing how to proceed.

P.S. Yes I'm working on the Ask Ty... you sent. Don't worry.


October 19, 2009


It's October Again - Five Birthdays & a Sweet Surprise

Yeah, I know it's not until Saturday (Phil's birthday, that is) but I was thinking about it today.
Anyhow, five birthdays:
2002 2005 2006 2007 2008
Oh--here's the sweet surprise--and I got this in the emailings this morning from "A.C."
"Good Stuff: hey, i checked out your blog for the first time in years, and really enjoyed your pics. there's a pic of a mushroom in particular that is really nice because you can see the ridges underneath the shroom top. really cool. [my daughter]'s birth was a good reason for me to rekindle my interest in photography, and i recently upgraded my camera and lenses. now i'm constantly looking around for things to photograph!...your pics are inspirational in that regard because you take the ordinary and somehow push the viewer to appreciate it more than before. that's a gift."
This is why we do it, don! Everybody do some art, dammit!

Better Red...


Starbucks: Cold & Rainy (Saturday Workshop)

S-s-s-something From The Emailings - October 17, 2009


My A-B-C-D oriented mind FRIGGIN HATES the insanely unpredictable and seemingly unplanned way all of your various internet rants, personas, and projects are intermingled with no sense of order.

Half the time I am clicking on something on your Blog and I am like "Where the fuck am I now?" I need a stupidly simply front end menu or something. It's like your Blog is one big inside joke or like I showed up at the point at the party where everyone is already erupting in laughter and I am looking around sheepishly confused not knowing whether or not I should laugh as I wasn't around to hear the original joke.


Dear Philzy,

Good point, Philzy. A beautiful brown snow. Right! OK, here's what I remember: Loma Prieta. October 17, 1989. 5:07 p.m. Twenty years ago today.

October was the beginning of my third year of actually living in Santa Cruz. I had been going "over the hill" since early 1986 (girlfriend) but had settled-in as a local by this point. Where I was was like, literally, five miles from the epicenter of this thing.

One of my first year graduate seminars began at 4:30; a Tuesday and Thursday deal. You know the scene: you show up, say some oddly formal and weirdly academic mumbo-jumbo while your cohort of six of the “best and the brightest” nod in agreement. Drop a “vis-à-vis” and a “context of the situation” into the mumbo-jumbo and you’re golden for a 6:45 dinner.

It was hot, even for October. Still. Quiet. Dry. It’s actually called “Earthquake Weather” in California even though there is no correlation between weather and earthquakes that I know of. In our tiny discussion group, I was leading a talk on group behavior. I was up in the front of the class making shit up about how individuals impact groups and how groups shape individuals when we all heard this groan. It came from the south, I recall that I stopped talking and we all looked to my left as the crescendo of the groan became a vibration. Then a rumble. Then a shake. Then a fucking roller coaster!

We just stood there. For a while. But when the covers to the florescent lights at Stevenson College began falling around us people started crawling under the conference table--group behavior, right? Except for me. I just stood there. Our professor, Tom Pettigrew, and my housemate Michael literally jostled for the safety of the door frame; pulling each other out of the way for their personal safety. It was like the Two Stooges. There was screaming.

Except for me. I just stood there.

It wasn’t panic that froze me during the violent shaking, glass breaking, shit falling all around us, and people screaming. I was actually amused by the sight of my peers cowering under a table and Michael fighting a geriatric for the door. Besides I was cool then...still fearless…until it began to feel as if the shaking was never going to stop. I remember thinking; maybe this is the fabled Big One where California falls into the ocean. Finally.

So about 40 seconds into it—time that and you’ll understand—even I headed for the table. Of course when it finally stopped I resumed my place in the front of the room and asked, flippantly, “any questions?” You know, as if nothing had happened.

One of my fellow geniuses was a young mom. I can appreciate her panic now that I have a young child. But 20 years ago, I just thought she was chickenshit. But now that would be me tearing out of there to go find my kids. The rest of us were uncertain what to do. We just kind of stood there looking at each other. It was our fearless professor from Virgina who declared, “let’s get the hell outta here!” And we left.

As we walked out of the building there were still people huddled under tables. Faculty offices were littered with books that fell from shelves. There was glass and debris to walk over. Planters and water coolers to hurtle. Outside, there was broken glass from the Stevenson dining hall. But most beautiful was about an inch of redwood duff; the school is in the forest. It was like a beautiful brown snow.

Sure there are a million things I remember from Loma Prieta--both obvious to nuance (just ask sometime)--but I'll always first remember that beautiful brown snow.

Thanks for the reminder, Philzy!

From your pal,




Shipping Lanes

College Park, Maryland - October 16, 2009

It Came by U.S. Mail

...but I know who this is from...

context [clicky] here

Thank you! Will frame.

Ask Ty...October 16 [The Physical Response Question]

It must be Tuesday Friday, Middlespacers, because I'm answering your questions
Q: Dear Ty,
So what is that elusive physical response that one gets when one is doing the one thing one loves to do and then connects.... Whether or not it makes $$ or is valued by the majority of surrounding beings?.... That other CREATIVE people get when they see it? What is it about creativity expressed well that brings us to tears? Or laughter? Or consternation? Or bewilderment? Or ACTion?

Just asking,


Ty: Good question and an even better observation, KHE. Art should invoke. Something. At least that how I feel. It could be subtle or brutal but there should be an elusive visceral reaction: a tingling at the nape of the neck, a slight rise in heart rate, pupil dilation or, perhaps vasocongestion. I believe art should challenge assumptions and conventions but never over-explain. Spoon-fed art has never done anything for me.

But, what is THE elusive physical response? Dunno. We talk a great deal about "blowing minds" in the arts. But that--other than an occasional TGA--isn't a practical goal (too messy and not enough Socialist health care...yet). The proverbial breaking of the heart? Not really a reaction I seek. See, these are emotional responses and emotions and the visceral overlap, we needn't separate.

I think THE elusive physical response for me--to my work--would be for those who interact (the key word) with my work to have a flooding of blood to as much of the the brain as possible (without triggering a TGA). Most of all, art--my art--should make you think. Think, question, wonder, and attempt to piece together the jigsaw pieces. What is real, what is myth, where does non-fiction meet fiction? Who knows? It is for you to interpret, individually.

Follow the breadcrumbs for someday they may lead you somewhere. The only call to ACTion, KHE, should be for you all to explore your middlespaces too; whatever that may be. No money, no fame. Just process.
"Some people prefer cupcakes better but I, for one, care less for them."

- FZ, The Muffin Man
Just a guess,



That's SO American! - Mullato Edition - UPDATE

Interracial couple denied marriage license in La.

By MARY FOSTER, Associated Press Writer Mary Foster, Associated Press Writer
October 15, 2009

NEW ORLEANS – A Louisiana justice of the peace said he refused to issue a marriage license to an interracial couple out of concern for any children the couple might have. Keith Bardwell, justice of the peace in Tangipahoa Parish, says it is his experience that most interracial marriages do not last long.


Okay. This was the last article I clicked on before I closed my (black) laptop for the evening and took my mixed-up ass (black, white, Jew, Flip) up to bed with my Irish/Italian wife of 11 years. I walked up the stairs quietly as not to awake my way (way) mixed-race child. Oh Keith Bardwell, it's 2010 and you got left behind. But I'm here to help you.
There is the future
And there is a past
Mixed-race marriages
Just do not last
Depending whom you ask, the overall U.S. divorce rate is either "way too high" or "not as high as you might think." The social science method to figure divorce rate is to calculate people who have ever married who subsequently divorced. Counted that way, the rate has never exceeded about 41 percent. Glass half-full or empty, right? More than a third, less than half.

I do not believe that Mr. Bardwell's contention is based on data however. Bardwell believes says that "most interracial marriages do not last long." Yet he fails to operationalize "most" or "last long." Is Mr. Bardwell a racist? Well, of course he's a racist! As long as there are races and we possess the ability to determine race differences, we'll ALL be racist! That's way too easy.

Mr. Bardwell has stated that he is not a racist, that's his attitude. However Mr. Bardwell's behavior demonstrates something else -- and that's part of the problem.

But the brave love birds of non-similar skin colors who fall in love and actually marry and have children are part of the solution: distilling all the colors into gradually similar shades of tan and beige. Hurray for the heroes of the species! There's absolutely nothing new or unique about the so-called "Jungle Fever." Just ask Thomas Jefferson, Strom Thurmond, or Bill de Blasio.

Oh wait. Beige isn't the answer. There will always be variants of characteristics that will cause us to hate, discriminate, and bias. We're humans, silly! We may make laws and rules but bias is permanent! That's called human nature. Like violence.

All we need to do is acknowledge our biases. Just be honest about our fears and preferences. What's wrong with that? We all have fears and preferences about everything, same goes for people. Mr. Bardwell's attitude and behaviors do not match. He's either lying that he's not a racist or that he is a racist. Problem is, rules and laws, as they stand, prohibit Mr. Bardwell from not marrying people with different skin types. Who says the south is backwards? It ain't backwards. It's just a little slow and there are some mopes involved. It's: mopetarded!

I wonder if he'd marry two dudes?

It Just Showed Up On My Doorstep

Okay. Officially, it's a thing now.

Green balloon. Half-flated helium. "Grand Opening."



TGA Foreshadowing

Check out this November 2008 post:


TELL ME!!! Free Milk Seminar (2007)

Strap on some 'phones, it's "Friday"...

[album site]
...lest we forget the alt version of Track 9, Rain's Blues "Twos" [clicky]

Father's View of the Workbench, October 2009

by the ty

Daughter's View of the Father, October 2009

by the b

Blue Phantom Freedom

Manhattan, Kansas, 1995 (from notebook)

1) Two American-English speaking Japanese gentlemen at the bar in the 'Hibachi Hut' (a Cajun-ish restaurant in Manhattan) confused w/the language and why the Hibachi is NOT a Japanese restaurant [one sounds like Sammy Davis Jr.].

2) Sign @ Hibachi Hut:
"Sorry We do not offer a "no smoking" section"
3) Watneys beer is really good!

4) Gettin' old as hell--not carded in a college town. Damn!

5) This just doesn't make any sense...flies can walk up-fucking-side-down on the ceiling.


One Jesus Skillet Please

JJ...can you bring me one of them Jesus Skillets please?
And, honey, could I get some more sugar for my coffee?
Thanks. I appreciate that.

A man can't be burdened by his jacket when he's eatin' his Jesus Skillet.