Happy Birthday To Me.

Posted on August 18th, 2009 in notes to self

But I was interested in the real future that I could see approaching, and less in the invented future that science fiction preferred. The future, needless to say, is a dangerous area to enter, heavily mined and with a tendency to turn and bite your ankles as you stride forward. A correspondent recently pointed out to me that the poetry-writing computers in Vermilion Sands are powered by valves. And why don’t all those sleek people living in the future have PCs and pagers? I could only reply that Vermilion Sands isn’t set in the future at all, but in a kind of visionary present.

-J.G Ballard

And suddenly I realize:  It’s not about the future we didn’t get.  It’s not.  Today’s my birthday, and I’m old. I’m the age my childhood self thought would live in a world with daily moon shuttles and teleporters and food replicators and VR headsets and flying cars.  I’m the age my childhood self thought would be a best-selling science-fiction short-stories writer, making up a future even more amazing than daily moon shuttles and teleporters and food replicators and VR headsets and flying cars.

Only:

  • We haven’t been to the moon in years, and
  • Teleportation isn’t looking any more likely, and
  • People are starving in my own city, and
  • VR Headsets look LAME, and
  • I don’t even drive a non-flying car, and
  • There aren’t any best-selling science-fiction short-stories writers.

But I’m not sorry.  I’ve got no apologies to my childhood self that the future didn’t shake out the way the stories (especially the secret ones I told myself) said it would.  Because now that I’m old, I understand what my childhood self didn’t: The Future isn’t something to live for.  Shiny or apocalyptic, The Future isn’t a destination.  The Future isn’t some terminal where the last train puts you out and then there you are.  The things we plan for and look forward to are all well and good and necessary — but they aren’t the point.

The point is the visionary present.

The point is what we do with our dreams of the Future, Today. What would you do, if you lived on the Moon, and why can’t you do it here?  Where would you go with a teleporter, and why don’t you start walking there, now?  What would you imagine, in a Virtual Reality, and why can’t you start at Home Depot? 

What would you create, if you worked in The Future?  Who would you love, and how would you live?

Me?  I’m old, today.  And things didn’t work out the way I planned, not at all. This world and my life are a million miles away from what I expected.

Funny thing is, though: It’s a million times better than my childhood plans.

Somewhere along the way, I stopped dreaming just about tomorrow, and started dreaming about now.  I started dreaming about how to use the tools I’ve got to hand.  I started dreaming about the life and love I’m living now, and those dreams started leaking into reality, and making new and better dreams that come true every single day.

Oh, my life’s not perfect — far from — but it’s good, and getting better, every day.

My birthday gift to myself this year is this wonderful Present, and my visions of where I’m going right now, and forever.

And you, you in the back that just scoffed at this old woman waxing poetic on her birthday, you shush.  If what I’m saying seems too pretty to be true, you’ll understand it when you’re older. Live a little, first, and then get back to me.

Links for 2020-11-14 via Warren Ellis

Saturday November, 14 2009 03:00 PM PST

  • BBC NEWS | World | Europe | ‘Body sold’ to Russia kebab shop
    "Police in Russia have arrested three homeless men suspected of killing a man, eating part of the body and selling other parts to a kebab shop"
    (tags:crime )

cotton and candy via Irene Kaoru

Saturday November, 14 2009 09:48 AM PST


Will Cotton, CANDY CURLS, 2005, oil on linen, 34×24 inches

I can NOT explain my obsession with things made out of food, especially candy. It’s a longstanding affliction I have. Via NOTCOT.

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-14 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Saturday November, 14 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • Binge eating motor vehicles. #earlyraptopics #
  • West Philadelphia. #earlyraptopics #
  • @mytrainerbob @bobburnquist @granulac @mindykaling @sksfactor @parenthacks @casanova909 @jillianmichaels @metro_parent @scrivenerapp #
  • @BigAC 3, in reply to BigAC #
  • @ashleygoldberg @danniremender I would like to go for kolaches at Happy Sparrow. When and how could we make this happen, ladies? in reply to ashleygoldberg #
  • Email from @mattfraction-no subject line-body consists of a single link: twitter.com/ace_frehley #
  • @BigAC Tan! in reply to BigAC #
  • @CharlieChu Ugh. Uh… Devil's Brood? Pound/Ache? The Crumpet Strumpet? Pummel Cake… I got nothin'. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @CharlieChu Slayer Cake is the best. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @ericMesquivel I TOTALLY WAS. in reply to ericMesquivel #
  • RT @DaveHolmes If you're not following @youngamerican's menswear blog, you really should be: http://putthison.tumblr.com #
  • @calebandrew how long are you here? in reply to calebandrew #
  • Getting HL to take his medicine like trying to pill a cat. Only worse. #
  • @McKelvie You're welcome. in reply to McKelvie #
  • @ivanbrandon None of us are having a good time of it right now. Just for fun, I woke up with a horrendous bloody nose this morning. in reply to ivanbrandon #
  • Making muffins at HL's request. Had to guess how much applesauce to sub for "1 1/2 ground apples" because… c'mon. #
  • Omnifocus question (can't find answer in Help): is it possible to have SUB-projects? How? #
  • @monstersandgods Feeling better, then? in reply to monstersandgods #
  • @Karajo Order some replacement tubes and membranes! They're not terribly expensive. in reply to Karajo #
  • Just heard a nice little interview with Chabon on Whad'ya Know? http://www.notmuch.com/ #

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-14 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Saturday November, 14 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • Binge eating motor vehicles. #earlyraptopics #
  • West Philadelphia. #earlyraptopics #
  • @mytrainerbob @bobburnquist @granulac @mindykaling @sksfactor @parenthacks @casanova909 @jillianmichaels @metro_parent @scrivenerapp #
  • @BigAC 3, in reply to BigAC #
  • @ashleygoldberg @danniremender I would like to go for kolaches at Happy Sparrow. When and how could we make this happen, ladies? in reply to ashleygoldberg #
  • Email from @mattfraction-no subject line-body consists of a single link: twitter.com/ace_frehley #
  • @BigAC Tan! in reply to BigAC #
  • @CharlieChu Ugh. Uh… Devil's Brood? Pound/Ache? The Crumpet Strumpet? Pummel Cake… I got nothin'. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @CharlieChu Slayer Cake is the best. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @ericMesquivel I TOTALLY WAS. in reply to ericMesquivel #
  • RT @DaveHolmes If you're not following @youngamerican's menswear blog, you really should be: http://putthison.tumblr.com #
  • @calebandrew how long are you here? in reply to calebandrew #
  • Getting HL to take his medicine like trying to pill a cat. Only worse. #
  • @McKelvie You're welcome. in reply to McKelvie #
  • @ivanbrandon None of us are having a good time of it right now. Just for fun, I woke up with a horrendous bloody nose this morning. in reply to ivanbrandon #
  • Making muffins at HL's request. Had to guess how much applesauce to sub for "1 1/2 ground apples" because… c'mon. #
  • Omnifocus question (can't find answer in Help): is it possible to have SUB-projects? How? #
  • @monstersandgods Feeling better, then? in reply to monstersandgods #
  • @Karajo Order some replacement tubes and membranes! They're not terribly expensive. in reply to Karajo #
  • Just heard a nice little interview with Chabon on Whad'ya Know? http://www.notmuch.com/ #

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-14 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Saturday November, 14 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • Binge eating motor vehicles. #earlyraptopics #
  • West Philadelphia. #earlyraptopics #
  • @mytrainerbob @bobburnquist @granulac @mindykaling @sksfactor @parenthacks @casanova909 @jillianmichaels @metro_parent @scrivenerapp #
  • @BigAC 3, in reply to BigAC #
  • @ashleygoldberg @danniremender I would like to go for kolaches at Happy Sparrow. When and how could we make this happen, ladies? in reply to ashleygoldberg #
  • Email from @mattfraction-no subject line-body consists of a single link: twitter.com/ace_frehley #
  • @BigAC Tan! in reply to BigAC #
  • @CharlieChu Ugh. Uh… Devil's Brood? Pound/Ache? The Crumpet Strumpet? Pummel Cake… I got nothin'. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @CharlieChu Slayer Cake is the best. in reply to CharlieChu #
  • @ericMesquivel I TOTALLY WAS. in reply to ericMesquivel #
  • RT @DaveHolmes If you're not following @youngamerican's menswear blog, you really should be: http://putthison.tumblr.com #
  • @calebandrew how long are you here? in reply to calebandrew #
  • Getting HL to take his medicine like trying to pill a cat. Only worse. #
  • @McKelvie You're welcome. in reply to McKelvie #
  • @ivanbrandon None of us are having a good time of it right now. Just for fun, I woke up with a horrendous bloody nose this morning. in reply to ivanbrandon #
  • Making muffins at HL's request. Had to guess how much applesauce to sub for "1 1/2 ground apples" because… c'mon. #
  • Omnifocus question (can't find answer in Help): is it possible to have SUB-projects? How? #
  • @monstersandgods Feeling better, then? in reply to monstersandgods #
  • @Karajo Order some replacement tubes and membranes! They're not terribly expensive. in reply to Karajo #
  • Just heard a nice little interview with Chabon on Whad'ya Know? http://www.notmuch.com/ #

Steampunk Fashion at Steampunk Workshop via Libby Bulloff

Friday November, 13 2009 03:43 PM PST

So much steampunk we’re bleedin’ oil!

I’ve started my fashion column over at Jake von Slatt’s Steampunk Workshop. Have a look-see if you’ve a moment! I may begin cross-posting some content from here to there and back again, but this time I’m gonna make ya go look.

Thank you!

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-13 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Friday November, 13 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • When you're trudging through an outline that was due yesterday, don't stop and read the names of twitter lists you're on. #protips #
  • @warrenellis DON'T DO IT. I'm on a list of "comics fangirls." I'm not sure why exactly, but that didn't do anything for my confidence. in reply to warrenellis #
  • @warrenellis Oh HA HA HA Too late. You shameless fangirling fiend. (It's a verb…?) in reply to warrenellis #
  • Excellent!@KathrynImmonen teams up with Lara West on a new exclusive digital Spider-Man strip http://twurl.nl/n4g7um #
  • @Gimpson I miss Penzey's. in reply to Gimpson #
  • RT @stevensanders …<30 copies away from selling out of SWORD 1 at Diamond. If you weren't able to get one, ask your LCS to order more. #
  • @meckett Yeah, before anything gets mailed out, I'll confirm addresses with recipients. in reply to meckett #
  • @iwantacookie really?! I didn't know! in reply to iwantacookie #
  • Hey, Ellis people! It's FREAKANGELS day! http://www.freakangels.com/?p=218 #
  • Looking forward to a productive day today. …See how I did that? #
  • @beetleginny Meh, I'm far more interested in what you bought than whether or not I got a kickback. Spill! in reply to beetleginny #

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-13 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Friday November, 13 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • When you're trudging through an outline that was due yesterday, don't stop and read the names of twitter lists you're on. #protips #
  • @warrenellis DON'T DO IT. I'm on a list of "comics fangirls." I'm not sure why exactly, but that didn't do anything for my confidence. in reply to warrenellis #
  • @warrenellis Oh HA HA HA Too late. You shameless fangirling fiend. (It's a verb…?) in reply to warrenellis #
  • Excellent!@KathrynImmonen teams up with Lara West on a new exclusive digital Spider-Man strip http://twurl.nl/n4g7um #
  • @Gimpson I miss Penzey's. in reply to Gimpson #
  • RT @stevensanders …<30 copies away from selling out of SWORD 1 at Diamond. If you weren't able to get one, ask your LCS to order more. #
  • @meckett Yeah, before anything gets mailed out, I'll confirm addresses with recipients. in reply to meckett #
  • @iwantacookie really?! I didn't know! in reply to iwantacookie #
  • Hey, Ellis people! It's FREAKANGELS day! http://www.freakangels.com/?p=218 #
  • Looking forward to a productive day today. …See how I did that? #
  • @beetleginny Meh, I'm far more interested in what you bought than whether or not I got a kickback. Spill! in reply to beetleginny #

ghostwalker via Trixie Bedlam

Friday November, 13 2009 06:49 AM PST

trixiebedlam posted a photo:

ghostwalker

been a long time since I spotted one of these. good to know Thundercut isn't RIP.

Matthew Ritchie via Irene Kaoru

Thursday November, 12 2009 05:30 PM PST

Brilliant article I am rereading over at artforum about one of my favorite contemporary artists, Matthew Ritchie. I haven’t actually thought about him much since I saw his 2006 show at Andrea Rosen (which was beautiful) but I almost want to mouth idiotic things like “everything he touches is fantastic” as though he were not just a guy. I am most drawn to artworks that speak to the mythical and larger than life, and his work always does so while creating its own language and operating very strictly within its own logic.


Matthew Ritchie in collaboration with Aranda\Lasch and Arup AGU, The Morning Line, 2008, mixed media.
Installation view, Centro Andaluz de Arte Contempor�neo, Seville. Photo: Benjamin Aranda.

Somewhere amid this tangle of incomplete emancipations lies a great deal of the work that we call emergent today. A prime example is Matthew Ritchie?s current traveling?or is it self-replicating??project, a series of structures including, most recently, The Morning Line in Seville and The Dawn Line in London (now on view in New York). An earlier, scaled-down iteration, titled The Evening Line, was presented at last year?s Venice Architecture Biennale, with the larger, more expansive and centrifugal Morning Line following soon after. This trajectory itself is a sign that Ritchie?s work has found clear and unapologetic interest among architects, but, more germanely, Ritchie himself developed, resolved, and realized these structures only with the collaboration of Benjamin Aranda and Christopher Lasch, two young researchers who specialize in algorithmic design. While The Morning Line initially appears as a snarled tumbleweed of metal filigree accidentally forming both interior and exterior cavities for inhabitation, as well as the structure of transfers and arches necessary to keep it stable and upright, it quickly resolves in one?s perception as a pattern of modules that is rotated, displaced, and scaled at every level and along what appear to be determined paths. This is the moment when an underlying predisposition is sensed, which transforms one?s understanding of the work (the modules, in fact, are hand-generated cartoons that are computationally ?grown?). Ritchie brought to the table a taste for medieval knowledge systems and the dream of their comprehensive resolution within a pageantry of materials and narrative characters. His interest in the figures or actors of knowledge as points of compression of historical understanding and imagination, or simply as convenient ways of presenting these to the mind, belies a profound belief that the world encodes itself in its productions and that this code represents an asset and resource that could and ought to be tapped, if only we knew how.

Systems Theory - Sanford Kwinter

Conan! What Is Best In Life? via Warren Ellis

Thursday November, 12 2009 04:43 PM PST

"DAY-GLO HUMAN UDDERS!"

tumblr_kt0ltn519I1qzocfyo1_500

(I feel I must point out that these are really not what are best in life, and that Molly Crabapple should be arrested and probably waterboarded for making me look at this.)

(And also this.)

(Cowgirls. Honestly.)

Links for 2020-11-12 via Warren Ellis

Thursday November, 12 2009 02:00 PM PST

  • Constellation 04: Cover for Sag/Cap issue
    "Here's a sneak peek at the new cover for Constellation's Sag/Cap issue out at the end of the month featuring Dame Darcy, Peter James from "Some Secret Place", Pluto in Cap, Travelmania, gorgeous photographs by Christina Labey, & horoscopes based on your inner animus. issue will be available at the end of the month."
    (tags:peopleiknow magazine design covers )
  • Holy water dispenser combats spread of swine flu - Telegraph
    "…a churchgoer waves his or her hand under a sensor and the machine spurts out holy water."
    (tags:cult tech )

HAPPY()SAD Tumblr Theme via Warren Ellis

Thursday November, 12 2009 01:54 PM PST

Because Ariana’s sliiiightly crazy, she’s created a free HAPPY()SAD theme for Tumblr users. This is, of course, based on the HAPPY()SAD t-shirt she and Rich Stevens released yesterday.

Twitter Updates for 2020-11-12 via Kelly Sue DeConnick

Thursday November, 12 2009 08:26 AM PST

  • Steve Niles on A Comicbook Orange:http://is.gd/4SSfx #
  • Wow, hailstorm. Glad I'm not driving in this. (Aand I wish I'd parked the car at the top of the hill. Oops.) #
  • Homemade playdoh was kind of a bust. Droopy. Might need a different recipe. HL seemed cheered tho & s'pose that's all that really matters. #
  • Hailstorm #
  • Hoooly crap. RT @terrytyson: Inspiration for the Modrian playhouse. Needs tweaking, but I like the concept. http://modern-shed.com/play.html #
  • @waffles Crystal sister…? #
  • @ST_Rachel We are watching ZOO TRAIN this very minute. HL's sick and has requested a ST marathon (starting w/BST v1). in reply to ST_Rachel #
  • @ST_Rachel Aw. Me too! If only pink eye were as sexy as the eye patch… (HL says "Tank you!" and also "Elephant!") in reply to ST_Rachel #
  • @danniremender Cool. Is it something you make or buy? in reply to danniremender #
  • @danniremender Recipe, please? in reply to danniremender #
  • @danniremender thank you! in reply to danniremender #
  • @madmarvelgirl hope your night is uneventful from here on out. in reply to madmarvelgirl #
  • @heathermjarvis I can't tell who that is! in reply to heathermjarvis #
  • RT @LushLtd We've got some prizes to giveaway! Retweet this message in the next hour 2b entered into our mini raffle! #
  • @brianwood I'd forgotten about that. in reply to brianwood #
  • .@rhymeswithchaos Elephants did get delayed by the move and we apologize! They're not forgotten, though. Promise. in reply to rhymeswithchaos #
  • @bclaymoore "Kara?" in reply to bclaymoore #
  • Tough night. MF's sick now too. HL was up (read: me 2 for 2 hours at 3am, then slept in until 9. Got stuck behind truck. Day starting late. #

Hailstorm & Rainbows via Kelly Sue

Wednesday November, 11 2009 04:14 PM PST

Kelly Sue posted a photo:

Hailstorm & Rainbows