Bomba Charger

"It takes two to make it outta sight."

This video of a young Python-active Terry Gilliam explaining/demonstrating cut-out animation is one of the best how- to/DIY’s I’ve ever seen. You get caught up in Gilliam’s craft—his spirited cut-and-paste appropriation of cultural artifacts set in motion via simple yet hilariously effective stop-action shorts. To say nothing of the sound design.

I’ve been eying some of my old comics and the kid’s construction paper and scissors…the tripod.

(Source: youtube.com)

4th of July

imageWalked Molly around the block last night. Abby joined us, happily riding her scooter while she counted the miniature flags that had been planted, as they are every year, by a local real estate agent. As an added bonus, this local real estate agent just happens to be the grandmother of one of Abby’s fellow classmates. Abby and I both think this is really cool.

What was the final tally? I don’t quite recall. 26 flags? 26 flags planted neatly in the corners of 26 houses on our block? I’ll have to ask Abby. Whatever the precise number, our block, in fact the whole neighborhood, looks great. I adore the hell out of 4th of July and these days leading up to it. Summer at its ripest (pause: have you noticed the riot of green going on? of things blooming? —we’re thick with vegetation—the lush and lusty growing of things) coupled with the rich strains of U.S. history and all its mystic chords of memory being played. Listen to a recording of John Williams conducting the Boston Pops on a 4th of July performance as you enjoy a few cold picnic beers if you want to take one measure of your patriotism/nationalism/manufactured consent.

If I’m lucky, on the 4th of July I’ll manage to imagine I’ve walked, if only for a few hours, into a Norman Rockwell painting. I’ll take a quick bath in its innocence. If it turns out right I come out smelling of fireworks and hotdogs.

Edmund Wilson on the Importance of Translation

In describing A.E. Houseman’s distinction as a translator, the great literary critic Edmund Wilson wrote of Houseman’s knack for restoring life to long neglected classics of the Western cannon. (I’m going to quote it at length, hold on…)

In Wilson estimation, works of Greek and Roman classical poetry by the likes of Ovid or Virgil were given nothing less than new life via Houseman’s ‘minute and accurate mastery of language’ coupled with his ‘first hand knowledge of how poets express himself.’  That’s fierce praise. And Houseman had his work cut out for him! Centuries of aesthetic indifference by lesser scholars or mere scribes had practically buried the identity, the vitality, the very pulse of the works. Wilson writes,

To this rescue of the Greek and Roman poets from the negligence of the Middle Ages, from the incompetence and insensitivity of the scholars, A.E. Houseman brought an unremitting zeal which may almost be described as a passion. It has been said of the theorems of Newton that they cause the pulse to beat faster as one follows them. but the excitement and satisfaction afforded by the classical commentary of Houseman must be unique in the history of scholarship. Even the scraping of the rust from an old coin is too tame an image to convey the experience of perusing one of this arguments to its climax. It is as if, from the ancient author, so long dumb with his language itself, his very identity blurred or obliterated, the modern classicist were striking a new spark of life—as if the poet could only find his tongue at the touch across Time of the poet. So far is Houseman the scholar a giver of life—yet is only as recreator. He is only, after all, again, discovering things that were already there. His findings do not imply a new vision.

Which is just about as perfect an encapsulation of what a good and proper translator should ultimately accomplish as I’ve ever read. Wilson makes Houseman’s cloistered, decades-long work as the Kennedy Professor of Latin at Trinity College in Cambridge feel like one of scholarly grandeur, with Houseman not simply tenured, but more expansively, a “giver of life,” reviving works near extinction so that they could once again be discovered in something resembling their original state by the modern reader. And never before had there been so many readers! Such a magical, sudden onslaught of readers! (see: modern university system.)

We tip our hats to Edmund Wilson and his own powers as a writer and “giver of life.”

Of course there are Tumblr’s made up of nothing but Twin Peaks GIFs! Some better than others, of course, seeing as the endless pop-cultural loop, of finding the perfect edit (will it be a seamlessly smooth loop, or like the above example, will it end abruptly, hauntingly, before relaunching), is not something to be trifled with. Because a really good GIF captures the essence of something and can effortlessly draw you in, it’s like a haiku, so compact and bursting forth, like a firework.
This may have been the best from the several hundred I viewed. From episode 1, no? A video filmed by James on the occasion of his outing with Donna and Laura. Donna’s watching this video on a television monitor at the the police station, still in shock over the loss of her best friend.
Seconds later, Agent Cooper will freeze the frame and see reflected in Laura Palmer’s eye somebody sitting on a motorcycle.

Of course there are Tumblr’s made up of nothing but Twin Peaks GIFs! Some better than others, of course, seeing as the endless pop-cultural loop, of finding the perfect edit (will it be a seamlessly smooth loop, or like the above example, will it end abruptly, hauntingly, before relaunching), is not something to be trifled with. Because a really good GIF captures the essence of something and can effortlessly draw you in, it’s like a haiku, so compact and bursting forth, like a firework.

This may have been the best from the several hundred I viewed. From episode 1, no? A video filmed by James on the occasion of his outing with Donna and Laura. Donna’s watching this video on a television monitor at the the police station, still in shock over the loss of her best friend.

Seconds later, Agent Cooper will freeze the frame and see reflected in Laura Palmer’s eye somebody sitting on a motorcycle.

(Source: crushedboness)

Bowling. The first picture is of Megan (on the right) and her friend, Helen, who, in tandem with the bumpers, offered friendly assistance.  In the second picture Helen and Megan are demonstrating their highly effective knee-roll while Abby leaps in the foreground.

Happy Birthday to my 7-year old!

Happy Birthday to my 7-year old!