Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Signs of Spring?

Spring is sprung,
the grass is rizz,
Here is Max,
the Bichon Frizz.

Suzy Homemaker has been working for some months on a computer course built around Corel Paint-Shop Pro. She prepared this photo at my request. (I should mention that the stuff she has learned to do goes way beyond the silliness above...)

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Saturday, March 21, 2009

HWSRN Reports on Chuck Mangione


Last night HWSRN went to see Chuck Mangione and his band play at the old Square Centre of the Round Hole in good ol' Lunchbucket Ontariario. Now, it's been many years since Chuck Mangione was a major major, but that doesn't mean he can't still blow a mean flugelhorn.

And HWSRN reports that he surely did. He played a medley of his hit. And brought the house to its foot.

Some of you may know that Chuck lost nearly half his band in that plane crash a while back near Buffalo. I don't know, and neither does HWSRN, which players they were, but he says that the bass player and sax player were the only two on stage with music stands, so that's a pretty good indication. Nevertheless, the band was mighty hot. They played songs from Chuck's album, Fun and Games. They played Bellavia, named after his maiden mother's maiden name...a lovely Italian sort of ballad. They played Land of Make Believe, which is one of my favourite all-time tunes. They played be-bop...an interesting thing called Dizzy and Miles...which featured a poem at the beginning and the refrain "All the world smiles at Dizzy and Miles"...and then each took be-bop solos accompanied only by the drums doing light swing with brushes. They featured the bass player on Fun & Games. Chuck let the young sax player blow and blow on several tunes. Then they played Children of Sanchez, with the drummer singing...and playing an entirely different rhythm from what he sang...something quite difficult to do...(don't forget, the drummer's already moving all four limbs in polyrhythmic patterns, and then to add the voice!)

This was the last song of the set. Chuck said goodnight. And left the stage for about thirty seconds. Then he came back.

Of course, he'd forgotten to play the song everybody came to hear. Feels So Good.

Well, no, he didn't really forget. It was the encore of course. But for HWSRN, it seemed a bit lacklustre after the tour de force of Children of Sanchez. It was like, "Hey, let's get the tune over with and go back to the hotel room..."

Exactly ninety minutes. Contractual obligation fulfilled. Feels fairly good, maybe, kinda, sorta.

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Saturday, March 14, 2009

Another Update on New Look Mental Blog

As you can see, I've changed the header photo, and the description of Mental Blog. An anonymous view...

I couldn't get it to stretch all the way over to the sidebar. I expect there's something in the code that creates a boundary or buffer. Don't know what that might be. Maybe some day when I'm not overcome with angst at the impending doom of the universe, I'll dig into the html and see if I can find the boundary of the Mental Blog galaxy.

The image on the right is the moon, of course. I don't know enough astronomy to tell you if it's waxing or waning. Anyway, it's the moon. A Lunar View of Larry's Head. Larry's Head is this Lunar Landscape. A sliver of light against a dark background. Or perhaps a dark mass with only the barest illumination peeking thru.

On the other hand, when you look at it quickly, it appears to be an Oreo cookie.

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Friday, March 13, 2009

Update on New Look Mental Blog

Suzy Homemaker said, "No no I don't like it that way why do you have to do it that way I liked it the other way better because you know we read from left to right so when we read we want to start at the left and go to the right but this way we have to start in the middle and go to the right and then back to the left and the left gets in the way because we need to start in the middle I liked it better the other way."

After a few moments reflection I agreed with her. I didn't like the sidebar on the left. I liked it better the other way, on the right. However, I did prefer the sans-serif font, if only for a change, and decided to make a contrast between the "page" and the sidebar. I think I'll leave it this way for now.

If you didn't see it the way it changed last night, too bad. It's gone. Well, not gone, I saved it, but I doubt I'll be bringing it back.

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March 10 Statement of H.H. the Dalai Lama

Ordinarily I wouldn't do this, but I think this is an important statement from the Dalai Lama, so I copied the whole thing from Beliefnet.

Today is the 50th anniversary of the Tibetan people's peaceful uprising against Communist China's repression in Tibet. Since last March widespread peaceful protests have erupted across the whole of Tibet. Most of the participants were youths born and brought up after 1959, who have not seen or experienced a free Tibet. However, the fact that they were driven by a firm conviction to serve the cause of Tibet that has continued from generation to generation is indeed a matter of pride. It will serve as a source of inspiration for those in the international community who take keen interest in the issue of Tibet. We pay tribute and offer our prayers for all those who died, were tortured and suffered tremendous hardships, including during the crisis last year, for the cause of Tibet since our struggle began.

Around 1949, Communist forces began to enter north-eastern and eastern Tibet (Kham and Amdo) and by 1950, more than 5000 Tibetan soldiers had been killed. Taking the prevailing situation into account, the Chinese government chose a policy of peaceful liberation, which in 1951 led to the signing of the 17-point Agreement and its annexure. Since then, Tibet has come under the control of the People's Republic of China. However, the Agreement clearly mentions that Tibet's distinct religion, culture and traditional values would be protected.

Between 1954 and 1955, I met with most of the senior Chinese leaders in the Communist Party, government and military, led by Chairman Mao Zedong, in Beijing. When we discussed ways of achieving the social and economic development of Tibet, as well as maintaining Tibet's religious and cultural heritage, Mao Zedong and all the other leaders agreed to establish a preparatory committee to pave the way for the implementation of the autonomous region, as stipulated in the Agreement, rather than establishing a military administrative commission. From about 1956 onwards, however, the situation took a turn for the worse with the imposition of ultra-leftist policies in Tibet. Consequently, the assurances given by higher authorities were not implemented on the ground. The forceful implementation of the so-called "democratic" reforms in the Kham and Amdo regions of Tibet, which did not accord with prevailing conditions, resulted in immense chaos and destruction. In Central Tibet, Chinese officials forcibly and deliberately violated the terms of the 17-point Agreement, and their heavy-handed tactics increased day by day. These desperate developments left the Tibetan people with no alternative but to launch a peaceful uprising on 10 March 1959. The Chinese authorities responded with unprecedented force that led to the killing, arrests and imprisonment of tens of thousands of Tibetans in the following months. Consequently, accompanied by a small party of Tibetan government officials including some Kalons (Cabinet Ministers), I escaped into exile in India. Thereafter, nearly a hundred thousand Tibetans fled into exile in India, Nepal and Bhutan. During the escape and the months that followed they faced unimaginable hardship, which is still fresh in Tibetan memory.

Having occupied Tibet, the Chinese Communist government carried out a series of repressive and violent campaigns that have included "democratic" reform, class struggle, communes, the Cultural Revolution, the imposition of martial law, and more recently the patriotic re-education and the strike hard campaigns. These thrust Tibetans into such depths of suffering and hardship that they literally experienced hell on earth. The immediate result of these campaigns was the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Tibetans. The lineage of the Buddha Dharma was severed. Thousands of religious and cultural centres such as monasteries, nunneries and temples were razed to the ground. Historical buildings and monuments were demolished. Natural resources have been indiscriminately exploited. Today, Tibet's fragile environment has been polluted, massive deforestation has been carried out and wildlife, such as wild yaks and Tibetan antelopes, are being driven to extinction.

These 50 years have brought untold suffering and destruction to the land and people of Tibet. Even today, Tibetans in Tibet live in constant fear and the Chinese authorities remain constantly suspicious of them. Today, the religion, culture, language and identity, which successive generations of Tibetans have considered more precious than their lives, are nearing extinction; in short, the Tibetan people are regarded like criminals deserving to be put to death. The Tibetan people's tragedy was set out in the late Panchen Rinpoche's 70,000-character petition to the Chinese government in 1962. He raised it again in his speech in Shigatse in 1989 shortly before he died, when he said that what we have lost under Chinese communist rule far outweighs what we have gained. Many concerned and unbiased Tibetans have also spoken out about the hardships faced by the Tibetan people. Even Hu Yaobang, the Communist Party Secretary, when he arrived in Lhasa in 1980, clearly acknowledged these mistakes and asked the Tibetans for their forgiveness. Many infrastructural developments such as roads, airports, railways, and so forth, which seem to have brought progress to Tibetan areas, were really done with the political objective of sinicising Tibet at the huge cost of devastating the Tibetan environment and way of life.

As for the Tibetan refugees, although we initially faced many problems such as great differences of climate and language and difficulties earning our livelihood, we have been successful in re-establishing ourselves in exile. Due to the great generosity of our host countries, especially India, Tibetans have been able to live in freedom without fear. We have been able to earn a livelihood and uphold our religion and culture. We have been able to provide our children with both traditional and modern education, as well as engaging in efforts to resolve the Tibet issue. There have been other positive results too. Greater understanding of Tibetan Buddhism with its emphasis on compassion has made a positive contribution in many parts of the world.

Immediately after our arrival in exile we began to work on the promotion of democracy in the Tibetan community with the establishment of the Tibetan Parliament-in-Exile in 1960. Since then, we have taken gradual steps on the path to democracy and today our exile administration has evolved into a fully functioning democracy with a written charter of its own and a legislative body. This is indeed something we can all be proud of.

Since 2001, we have instituted a system by which the political leadership of Tibetan exiles is directly elected through procedures similar to those in other democratic systems. Currently, the directly-elected Kalon Tripa's (Cabinet Chairperson) second term is underway.Consequently, my daily administrative responsibilities have reduced and today I am in a state of semi-retirement. However, to work for the just cause of Tibet is the responsibility of every Tibetan, and I will uphold this responsibility.

As a human being my main commitment is in the promotion of human values; this is what I consider the key factor for a happy life at the individual level, family level and community level. As a religious practitioner, my second commitment is the promotion of inter-religious harmony. My third commitment is of course the issue of Tibet due to my being a Tibetan with the name of the 'Dalai Lama', but more importantly it is due to the trust that Tibetans both inside and outside Tibet have placed in me. These are the three important commitments, which I always keep in mind.

In addition to looking after the well being of the exiled Tibetan community, which they have done quite well, the principal task of the Central Tibetan Administration has been to work towards the resolution of the issue of Tibet. Having laid out the mutually beneficial Middle-Way policy in 1974, we were ready to respond to Deng Xiaoping when he proposed talks in 1979. Many talks were conducted and fact-finding delegations dispatched. These, however, did not bear any concrete results and formal contacts eventually broke off in 1993.

Subsequently, in 1996-97, we conducted an opinion poll of the Tibetans in exile, and collected suggestions from Tibet wherever possible, on a proposed referendum, by which the Tibetan people were to determine the future course of our freedom struggle to their full satisfaction. Based on the outcome of the poll and the suggestions from Tibet, we decided to continue the policy of the Middle-Way.

Since the re-establishment of contacts in 2002, we have followed a policy of one official channel and one agenda and have held eight rounds of talks with the Chinese authorities. As a consequence, we presented a Memorandum on Genuine Autonomy for the Tibetan People, explaining how the conditions for national regional autonomy as set forth in the Chinese constitution would be met by the full implementation of its laws on autonomy. The Chinese insistence that we accept Tibet as having been a part of China since ancient times is not only inaccurate but also unreasonable. We cannot change the past no matter whether it was good or bad. Distorting history for political purposes is incorrect.

We need to look to the future and work for our mutual benefit. We Tibetans are looking for a legitimate and meaningful autonomy, an arrangement that would enable Tibetans to live within the framework of the People's Republic of China. Fulfilling the aspirations of the Tibetan people will enable China to achieve stability and unity. From our side, we are not making any demands based on history. Looking back at history, there is no country in the world today, including China, whose territorial status has remained forever unchanged, nor can it remain unchanged.

Our aspiration that all Tibetans be brought under a single autonomous administration is in keeping with the very objective of the principle of national regional autonomy. It also fulfils the fundamental requirements of the Tibetan and Chinese peoples. The Chinese constitution and other related laws and regulations do not pose any obstacle to this and many leaders of the Chinese Central Government have accepted this genuine aspiration. When signing the 17-point Agreement, Premier Zhou Enlai acknowledged it as a reasonable demand. In 1956, when establishing the Preparatory Committee for the "Tibet Autonomous Region", Vice-Premier Chen Yi pointing at a map said, if Lhasa could be made the capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region, which included the Tibetan areas within the other provinces, it would contribute to the development of Tibet and friendship between the Tibetan and Chinese nationalities, a view shared by the late Panchen Rinpoche and many educated Tibetans, cadres among them. If Chinese leaders had any objections to our proposals, they could have provided reasons for them and suggested alternatives for our consideration, but they did not. I am disappointed that the Chinese authorities have not responded appropriately to our sincere efforts to implement the principle of meaningful national regional autonomy for all Tibetans, as set forth in the constitution of the People's Republic of China.

Quite apart from the current process of Sino-Tibetan dialogue having achieved no concrete results, there has been a brutal crackdown on the Tibetan protests that have shaken the whole of Tibet since March last year. Therefore, in order to solicit public opinion as to what future course of action we should take, the Special Meeting of Tibetan exiles was convened in November 2008. Efforts were made to collect suggestions, as far as possible, from the Tibetans in Tibet as well. The outcome of this whole process was that a majority of Tibetans strongly supported the continuation of the Middle-Way policy. Therefore, we are now pursuing this policy with greater confidence and will continue our efforts towards achieving a meaningful national regional autonomy for all Tibetans.

From time immemorial, the Tibetan and Chinese peoples have been neighbours. In future too, we will have to live together. Therefore, it is most important for us to co-exist in friendship with each other.

Since the occupation of Tibet, Communist China has been publishing distorted propaganda about Tibet and its people. Consequently, there are, among the Chinese populace, not many who have a true understanding about Tibet. It is, in fact, very difficult for them to find the truth. There are also ultra-leftist Chinese leaders who have, since last March, been undertaking a huge propaganda effort with the intention of setting the Tibetan and Chinese peoples apart and creating animosity between them. Sadly, as a result, a negative impression of Tibetans has arisen in the minds of some of our Chinese brothers and sisters. Therefore, as I have repeatedly appealed before, I would like once again to urge our Chinese brothers and sisters not to be swayed by such propaganda, but, instead, to try to discover the facts about Tibet impartially, so as to prevent divisions among us. Tibetans should also continue to work for friendship with the Chinese people.

Looking back on 50 years in exile, we have witnessed many ups and downs. However, the fact that the Tibet issue is alive and the international community is taking growing interest in it is indeed an achievement. Seen from this perspective, I have no doubt that the justice of Tibet's cause will prevail, if we continue to tread the path of truth and non-violence.

As we commemorate 50 years in exile, it is most important that we express our deep gratitude to the governments and peoples of the various host countries in which we live. Not only do we abide by the laws of these host countries, but we also conduct ourselves in a way that we become an asset to these countries. Similarly, in our efforts to realise the cause of Tibet and uphold its religion and culture, we should craft our future vision and strategy by learning from our past experience.

I always say that we should hope for the best, and prepare for the worst. Whether we look at it from the global perspective or in the context of events in China, there are reasons for us to hope for a quick resolution of the issue of Tibet. However, we must also prepare ourselves well in case the Tibetan struggle goes on for a long time. For this, we must focus primarily on the education of our children and the nurturing of professionals in various fields. We should also raise awareness about the environment and health, and improve understanding and practice of non-violent methods among the general Tibetan population.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my heartfelt gratitude to the leaders and people of India, as well as its Central and State Governments, who despite whatever problems and obstacles they face, have provided invaluable support and assistance over the past 50 years to Tibetans in exile. Their kindness and generosity are immeasurable. I would also like to express my gratitude to the leaders, governments and peoples of the international community, as well as the various Tibet Support Groups, for their unstinting support.

May all sentient beings live in peace and happiness!

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New Look Mental Blog

I swear I didn't do it on purpose!

I did mention in a comment that perhaps it was time for a change. But what happened is this...

I went to the template section of the blog and clicked on "Save Template" because I thought that would save the template I had. I would save what I had and fool around with new possibilities. But no!!! Save Template means "use" the template whose box has been checked. The spot I was looking for to save my (formerly) current template was somewhere else. I only found it later.

But anyway. So now Mental Blog has a new look. I like it fine, after a little bit of tweaking, and rebuilding the label cloud. But maybe some more tweaking. This particular template doesn't seem to offer all the colour options of the previous one, but perhaps for obvious reasons. I expect it's possible to change colours in the HTML, but I still don't know enough about code to do that.

So. Enjoy the new template. Or not. If not, let me know.

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Thursday, March 12, 2009

Discovering New Music

For several months I've been a member of a music site called Amie Street. It's sort of like iTunes, but different.

When you become a member of Amie Street you are encouraged to check out the new music as it comes into the site. Why? Because if you get in early you can download it for free. Most of the music that comes into Amie Street starts off free. As more people discover it and download it, the price goes up until it's $.99 per track. So, if you get it early you get it free, or very cheap. And even if you get it free, you have the satisfaction of knowing that your download has brought that artist a step closer to making some money. In addition, you can recommend a song once you own it, and this has two benefits: it can help others to decide whether to download, and if the popularity of the track increases you get a sort of cashback reward.

It's also a way to discover new, unknown artists without breaking your wallet. It goes without saying that there are legions of unknown but amazing musicians out there. In the last few weeks alone I have downloaded perhaps a dozen artists I'd never heard of before who blew me away with their music. Here are just two, both guitarists (available on Amie Street): Battista, who plays a style similar to the Gypsy Kings; and Alberto Fuggini, who plays sublime folk/classical. Go to their Amie Street sites and check them out. You can play clips to get an idea of what they're like.

But it's not all just new or unknown artists. I've downloaded music from the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Little Feat, George Benson, Stan Kenton, and The Coasters. In fact, I've downloaded so much free or inexpensive music, I haven't had time to listen to it all yet.

Now, here's the other side of this story. If you are a musician, you can upload your mp3s and make them available for sale/download. Each track you upload can reach the potential price of $.99. After an admin fee by Amie Street of $5, you start earning money. Amie Street takes a 30% cut. I'm not sure whether this is a big cut or not. I don't know what percentage iTunes gets. However, the beauty of it is, you really don't have to do much work for it. Except to tell all your friends to register with Amie Street, download your tunes (early, for free...) and get some buzz happening.

I warn you, though. The search for new and interesting music can be a little addictive. I find myself, lately, checking out the site every day to see what's new.

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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Talking Back to China

Starting with an off-topic comment: I made a solemn vow that I would make one post per day for the month of March, but I missed yesterday for various trivial reasons, so today I must post two articles. So this is the second one, altho now it's on the top of the page and looks like the first one...

Yesterday, of course, was the 50th anniversary of China's final conquest of Tibet. (Yes, I know, it's a rather inflammatory way of putting it, but I'm tired and can't be bothered to be diplomatic.) By "final" I mean the moment when China took over the land completely, with no pretense of granting autonomy or independence or human, social and religious rights. The real "final" conquest is still progressing, and the path that China intends to follow with respect to Tibet seems quite clear, to me at least.

In an editorial yesterday, the New York Times expressed the view (which I have heard and read elsewhere as well) that China is squandering its best opportunity to reach a reasonable agreement with Tibet and Tibetans by attacking His Holiness the Dalai Lama with intemperate and actually quite violent rhetoric. They say the Chinese government would like to see some stability in Tibet and passing up this opportunity will actually guarantee instability.

The Dalai Lama strongly castigated the Chinese government yesterday in his speech about the plight of Tibet today and the remembrance of the uprising 50 years ago. He accused the Chinese of creating a "hell on earth" for the Tibetans. There may be some good reasons why he decided to use such strong language, not the least of which is the growing restiveness of the Tibetan community. Fifty years is a long time to preach "autonomy" and forebearance in the face of naked repression.

But in spite of that, the Dalai Lama has not changed his basic approach. He is the Bodhisattva of Compassion. He's not likely to do an about-face.

However, the Chinese are materialists. They are not concerning themselves with the religious fervor and strong devotion of Tibetans for His Holiness. They're looking at the facts of the world as they present themselves, and as they can be manipulated.

The Dalai Lama represents the continuity of Tibetan autonomy and self-rule. When he dies, the next in line would have been the Panchen Lama. The Chinese kidnapped the boy His Holiness designated as the reincarnation of the previous Panchen Lama more than ten years ago. He has not been seen since. In other words, they have broken the line of succession (never mind elections and Tibetan parliaments or councils in exile or Tibet itself...these have authority, yes, but not exactly the same cachet as the Dalai Lama and the Panchen Lama...the people look to his Holiness for inspiration and guidance...)

When the Dalai Lama dies, the Tibetans will be truly bereft. If you think there is pressure from the government of China now against the "splittists" of Tibet, wait until His Holiness is gone. Even with a firmly-established reincarnation, there will be a hiatus of at least fifteen years, probably more like twenty. Which is more than enough time for the Chinese to bludgeon the Buddhists of Tibet.

The Chinese know this. It's what they're waiting for. All the more reason why the rest of the world needs to push back and talk back with some courage.

Meanwhile, let's not forget that the Dalai Lama did receive the Nobel Peace Prize. Here are a couple of quotes gleaned from Beliefnet:
Brute force, no matter how strongly applied, can never subdue the basic human desire for freedom and dignity. It is not enough, as communist systems have assumed, merely to provide people with food, shelter and clothing. Human nature needs to breathe the precious air of liberty.

We should not seek revenge on those who have committed crimes against us, or reply to their crimes with other crimes. We should reflect that by the law of karma, they are in danger of lowly and miserable lives to come, and that our duty to them, as to every being, is to help them to rise towards Nirvana, rather than let them sink to lower levels of rebirth.

The Dalai Lama From "The Pocket Dalai Lama," edited by Mary Craig, 2002. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Boston.

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Blogs That Link Here

According to Technorati, there aren't many.

Like, one maybe? In the last year or so.

I don't log in to Technorati very often these days, but the other day I clicked on the link down at the bottom of Mental Blog...the one that says "Blogs That Link Here"...just to see what came up.

And I got an odd surprise. A blog called Occultural Anthropology had linked to one of my posts. It was one called "Arthur Koestler's a Dharma Bum!" posted in 2007.

Actually, it was more than a link. The author of the blog had copied the entire post and pasted it into his blog, with the original link, of course, which was how it came to be noted by Technorati.

What an odd feeling that was. But even stranger was reading through the post on this blog. Because it was written some time ago, it was no longer entirely familiar to me, as if it had been written by someone else. At least, that was the way I was reading it. I was struck by certain phrases and a couple of passages really impressed me! And for a second I thought I could not possibly have written this. Except for a few telltale Mental Blogisms, it seemed quite well thought out and well written. Finally I had to concede that it must have been written by Larry Keiler, inmate of the Yoni School for Wayward Poets. What finally convinced me was clicking on the link in the Occultural Anthropology posting. It took me straight to Mental Blog and the "Arthur Koestler's a Dharma Bum!" post.

Check them both out. It's interesting to see the post in two different contexts. The Occultural Anthropology post can be found here. While you're at it you might find something else interesting on that blog. And the original post can be found here.

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Monday, March 09, 2009

Asymmetric Aphorism #5

There are two sides to every story,
but with good will and good faith negotiation
we can come up with a win-win-win solution.

Digg! diigo it

Sunday, March 08, 2009

A Momentary Lapse of Lucidity

let me go crash! brash!
let me stash, gnash teeth
by the seasaw in nash rambler
fifty years gone long lawn long lost
lying
on its broken back bacon scrambler egg cup

let me
thrash flash bulbous ectotherms
obscurity terms papers blown in the windpipe
swipe the rambler gamble the gypsy moth
frothyface moon dabbler scrabble pumpkin
peter eater
that's a triple word score!

let me plash in the kiddie pool
fool i be, fool i wool over your woolfish eyes
and doughy thighs squeezed nightly in the spandex
change the stockings change
the standard poor excuse for
vile robbery tile mockery style foppery

let me
plum the deepends, the jam of forefathers
two mothers three sisters ten brothers
brooks and done like dinners diners clubs and diamonds
give me lets give me baseballs and baseboards
for last trains to gnashville
i'll meet you at the station where
that cross we'll bear
skin to skin
in the evening of our ascension

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Saturday, March 07, 2009

Addendum to: Future Collectors' Items

My friend Wild Thing sent me this visual joke, and I pass it on to you:

IKEA HAS ANNOUNCED ITS INTENTION TO TAKE OVER GM,

AND TO SELL CARS.

WE ARE IN DEEP SHIT....









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Friday, March 06, 2009

Update on Roland V-Accordion

In a fit of existential pique, HWSRN returned the Roland V-Accordion to the Lunchbucket Music Emporium. You remember the V-Accordion. I wrote about it some months ago.


HWSRN says he had kept it far too long. After all, he only had it for a trial. But after working with it and playing it quite a bit he had come to appreciate its qualities better and begun to see how he could use it. There were still things he didn't like about it, but over time he began to see how he could work around these or adjust to them.

Anyway, they were unable to come up with a price that suited him. The head of the keyboard department at the music store kept repeating, every time HWSRN went to talk to him, about how they had never charged him rent or anything like that...which annoyed HWSRN so much that he finally resolved to return the accordion, write them a nice cheque for rental and let them put the accordion back up on the wall where it had languished for the previous year. So they got their rental, but no sale. One wonders which was more valuable?

HWSRN thinks they didn't really want to sell it that badly. He also thinks they failed to exercise a little bit of imagination around how they could use this for promotional purposes. But that's how it goes, eh? I say it was a breakdown in the customer/salesman relationship. It is, perhaps, a missed opportunity all around, but not, thank god, a life and death situation.

Says HWSRN, "It's only a bloody accordion...and a virtual one at that!"

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Thursday, March 05, 2009

Future Collectors' Items

Remember these?

1922 REO Speedwagon

1958 Ford Edsel Convertible

1963 Studebaker Avanti

1968 AMC Javelin SST

Regardless of what kind of reputation these cars had when they were around, today they are avidly sought, lovingly restored collectors' items.

Now here are a few more brands that may soon be collectors' items.
(Hint: Don't sell your Chevette...)


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