i want to go. i found out about these 'ufo houses' - a part of a failed resort complex from the 70s - north of taipei last year but never got there. most of the extant information about the resort seems to generally coincide, though none appears definitive - rumors range from bad business deals to poor building materials to haunting. my renewed enthusiasm hails from a fairly recent series of ripped off/spawned blog posts here, here, here. the most interesting link is probably the one at the jump. all i know for sure is that it's on this island and i'm on this island.

LINK: [amazing] also rans...



[i can't fucking believe obama's favorite book is song of solomon.]



metronomy is mostly one guy, but sometimes it's three guys, but mostly really only one. see, joseph mount writes and records music using the name metronomy, but he needs extra hands when he goes on the road. regardless who's present, metronomy makes nodders and danceables [think hot chip/battles/cut copy/dead or alive]. metronomy's latest, nights out, just came out. if you find it, you'll find your toes tapping. and for the love of all that is synth rock, watch the radio ladio video.

LINK: interview...


it's been WEEKS since i've been this happy!!!

[click for video]



you don't want this


Hi Every​one,​
PBS is doing​ one of those​ instant online polls​ to ask "​America"​ if they think​ Sarah​ Palin​ is fit to be Vice President.

The GOP has launched a successful​ all out blitz​ to get Republicans to go on the site and click​ "Yes." As a result right​ now it looks​ like 50% of "​America"​ think​s Palin is qualified.​ The Republicans are going​ to be milking this for all its worth​ in their​ press​ efforts.

We need to drive​ more Democrats and those​ opposed to Palin​ to the site to click​ "​NO." Let'​s not give the GOP another easy weapon to put in their​ PR arsenal!​ Here'​s the link:​ http://www.pbs.org/now/polls/poll-435.html You don'​t have to enter​ your email​ address or anything.​ Just click​ "NO." Done.



the voynich manuscript

the voynich manuscript has been a fascination of mine for some time though i don't think i've ever had an actual conversation about it with anyone, not unlike your 12-sided die or that miley cyrus cd that you only play when you're in the car by yourself. the voynich, named for the man who discovered it, is an anonymous medieval text that some have seen fit to dub "the most mysterious manuscript in the world", which seems about right, though finnegan's wake and the story of the vivian girls still merit mention in that conversation. the manuscript is handwritten in a cipher that has few if any connections to any known languages and dates from sometime between the 15th and 17th centuries, depending on whose references you prefer. most interpretations are that - if it's not some elaborate, 800-year-old hoax - the subjects of the manuscript are multiple facets concerned with the study of alchemy. there are indications of astrology and physiognomy, and the whole text is illustrated with mysterious plants, almost none of which actually exist. i could go on about this at length, but i'm no expert. hit the links at the jump, get your head around it, and maybe we'll have an actual conversation about it.

LINK: one voynich opinion
LINK: gallery of voynich illustrations
LINK: related? oh, henry!


all bets are off

it's friday and i don't have anything to do, so find below a few (debatable) video best-of selections...

best fight scene ever?

[from Undefeatable]

best devo video ever?

[*note: i apologize for the horrendous quality, but, rather mysteriously, this video has virtually disappeared from the internet in the past few years. as you can see, this rip was taken from some haggard video or beta. if you can dig this, seek out some klaus nomi, prince of new wave falsetto covers.]

best 11 seconds of cat ever put on film?


BABL: Arch Daily

[I've decided I'm going to feature a blog every now and then, which is why this post is entitled BABL (acronym... Blogging About BLogs).]

While sore necks quickly subside for new New Yorkers, those folks do still look up, and it's not always just because they've been in a city rut and nearly forgotten what it's like to go Central Park. Often, it's for reasons like this. For those of us who don't live in New York, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, etc., there's Arch Daily. Arch Daily is a wildly shiny but not-too-big-for-its-britches architecture blog that previews skylines-to-come and dream houses too angular to have actually dreamed about (at least in my dreams, which could be why i'm not an architect). There's little news available about who these guys actually are, but they appear to - most obviously - be architects with some skilled writers in tow. That is to say, read the words, too. I'm no design buff, but I could gawk and puzzle and wonder at this for entirely too long. Maybe shiny is enough for me. Maybe it's enough for you. Take a look, you don't even have to crane your neck.



Yes, Infart sounds like something sixth graders snicker about; it actually takes the name from the collective of artists that organizes it. And yes, I'm a couple weeks late on this, but seeing as I can safely say that I don't have (m)any Italian readers, I'm calling it still relevant. On September 6th and 7th, Infart turned Bassano del Grappa - a city of some 40,000 in the Veneto region of Italy - into the self-proclaimed "Street Art Capital of Europe" for the third year running. For this year's Infart, Bassano del Grappa was opened to 80 graffiti, sculpture, video, and music artists. Bassano del Grappa, which dates to the 2nd century BC, chose to open the old section of the city to the competition, which appears to include a number of courtyards, playgrounds, plenty of stuccos and garages as well as numerous alleys. Despite being mostly in Italian (spliced with just enough charmingly poor English for effect), the website is easy to use and a great reference for a whole range of amazing artists. Flickr links after the jump.

LINK: Garage Nardini
LINK: Zellaby



Finally. I'm sad about the Brewers.

LINK: Doomsday (Sporting News)
LINK: Hope? (JSOnline)


(David Foster Wallace 1962 - 2008)

Pervasive endnoter and verbose weaver of Everest-scale ironies, author David Foster Wallace was found dead of an apparent suicide Friday night. Wallace, a writer who challenged readers by challenging conventions of culture, word choice, and syntax, is to be sorely missed in this, the most scattered generation of literature in history. Infinite Jest, Wallace's most acclaimed work, is a 1,000+ page tome focused on a pastiche of cultural musings and post-postmodern (sic) society that takes place in a hypothetical present and near future in which years are referred to by names given by corporate sponsors (think "Year of the Whopper"). Wallace was also a contributor of thought-provoking non-fiction rhetoric both brazen and skeptical, his essays appeared everywhere from Harper's to Rolling Stone to Science, and covered topics ranging from tennis to politics. If you aren't familiar, he's worth a look, and if you are, he's worth reminding yourself about. Links below.

LINK: Tense Present (Harper's, April, 2001)
LINK: Good People (The New Yorker, February, 2007)

Typhoon Sinlaku

Typhoon Sinlaku is a category 4 storm that is slicing and dicing Taiwan this weekend, the above photo (taken from our balcony during a fairly calm moment) doesn't really do it justice. To give some impression, Hurricane Ike, currently plundering Texas, is a category 2. Thus far I've paid homage to the power of nature a variety of ways, including watching Gremlins, napping, ordering pizza, napping, and spending an inordinate amount of time wandering in the convenience store. And that was only Saturday, we're on the hook for this storm through Monday. Got any favorite indoor pastimes?



Catch this flock of abstract birds on the billboard outside the Espeis Gallery in Williamsburg (11th and Wythe). Migration is a project by London illustrator/painter Hellovon, who has done projects for the New York Times, Nike, and Serum vs. Venom, among others, and works equal magic in ink, charcoal, watercolor and acrylic. The birds appeared last month on London's Truman Brewery and will be in Williamsburg until further notice, so go take a walk. And when you get back from that walk, check his page for other work. I highly recommend clicking through the showcase link to the watercolor Teenwolf poster. For serious.


Banksy does NoLA

Flickr is all of a sudden atwitter with photos of Banksy surfacing in New Orleans just prior to and following Hurricane Gustav. With so much graffiti devolving into loud, gratuitous tagging and branding, it's great be reminded of the potential of graffiti as a spontaneous, accessible medium for thought-provoking art. On the same token, it's a bit counter-productive of Banksy's fans to actually steal his art. Seems a bit unprincipled in its irony - after all, isn't its fleeting nature one of the inherent appeals of graffiti?

LINK: an also-ran in kensington...