Contact.

It’s 365 years later and the end of another year. Was it a good one? A bad one? A combination of the two? Did you make “contact” with something?

from here.

Are you optimistic about the future? What about just tomorrow? What about just tonight? What do you think when you look back on this year that just ended? Are things going according to your plans or are you finding yourself constantly delivered into new and different and exciting and altogether unforeseeable outcomes? Are we living in the future? Or are we just dreamers lost in our own magic spells and writing the story as we trip over the words and the lines and the chapter breaks?

Do you have more questions than answers, or vice versa? Which do you prefer more, sunrises or sunsets? Beginnings or endings? Or are they intrinsically tied together, just like all of us, in the grand scheme of things?

Just curious.

This was an interesting year. As much one full of little victories and joys as it was of big failures and sadness. For me, at least. Things happened. The players moved the pieces across the chessboard. The game continued. It was exciting, it was heart breaking, and sometimes it was just one or just the other, and sometimes it was both. The wheel kept turning.

from here.

Next year is possibly the year before the year the world ends, and that kind of puts everything into some kind of perspective.

If you’re reading this now or read it before, then some kind of contact was made. With you, with us, with it, with “the other,” with nothing and everything and anything that falls in between all of that.

It’s really up to you there, though. It’s all subjective. Just as you choose your own level of involvement in all things (but especially the future), you also bring your own meaning to the equation. In the end we’ll all be getting exactly what we what. The angels of tomorrow will all be speaking the same language: glossolalia.

Things can seem small in one moment and in one kind of light, and loom large in another. Understanding has to be unearthed and earned and meaning was to be extrapolated. We keep guessing, we keep surmising, we keep poking and attempting things and shining our torches into the dark.

And if there’s something out there, then have no fear, we’ll find it.

The Questions.

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.”

-Rainer Maria Rilke

Pictures from here and here.

And here.

And here and here.

And also here.

“People care what I think. I have a prestigous blog, sir!”

Once again, RIP Party Down. Goodbye, Roman.

from here.

All of these worlds are yours.

Meanwhile on the internet:

Ricky Gervais: Why I’m An Atheist.

The objectification of writers.

Alf drops the n-word.

Escape From Spiderhead” by George Saunders.

Quite frankly, Argentina has better dance reality shows.

Ten of the most intriguing movies of 2011.

Sarah Palin’s gloomy new poll numbers.

What has always been missing from your life and will now make it more complete: A mash-up between Fiddler On The Roof and You Got Served.

Eisenstein, Mickey Mouse, and the synthesis of ecstasy.

WikiLeaks and Nerd Supremacy.

15 things that Kurt Vonnegut said better than anyone.

The scientist who lit up the Dark Ages.

These screencaps, of course, are from Peter Hyam’s 1984 adaptation of 2010: The Year We Make Contact.

One of the absolute best comics of the year: Phonogram: The Singles Club.

One of the absolute worst comics of the year: When Kevin Smith took a big, smelly shit on Batman.

Does our universe show “bruises” from where it collided with other universes?

Angry people in local newspapers.

“Look at your God. Now look at me.” Cthulhu and Old Spice!

Infinity and beyond.

Saw this today and it gave me a good laff:

from here.

The year in film.

This is a fun little montage:

from here and here.

Three days.

Three days. That’s how many are left in 2010.

That is so wild, right? The end of the science fiction year that wasn’t too science fiction-y, sadly. Or maybe it was and I just wasn’t paying nearly enough attention. Or maybe I’ve just gotten so accustomed to the very pedestrian and incredibly mundane and boringly sexy science fiction-y aspects of my normal life?

from here.

I’m sure it’s something like that. Absolutely. Definitely. Whatever.

Also, this:

from here.

In this year, in this world of internetting and bloggery and social media, I had five very simple goals that I laid out at the start of 2010 and wanted to complete by year’s end. In order of my own personal interest and their importance, they were:

1. Not going to tell you (you’re not ready for this one yet, folks)(and neither am I).

2. Not going to tell you (forthcoming).

3. Not going to tell you (total abysmal failure).

4. Not going to tell you (worked, but was embarrassing and not worth mentioning again).

5. Getting 2,010 tweets in 2010!

The fifth one is the one that I’m going to definitely accomplish. Unless I lose both hands sometime in the next three days. Or lose my phone or computer or both. Or unless an EMP just wipes out all technology in the country/world.

But, well, I just don’t twitter much. And getting 2,010 tweets in 2010 was a silly, frivolous goal that I jokingly threw out on my twitter sometime back in… I don’t know what month, but sometimes those things you only jokingly declare are the ones that stick with you. It was somewhere around the start of the year, I believe, and I think I had less than a thousand tweets then and was probably tweeting an average of four to five tweets a month, roughly.

And eventually I just thought, yeah, I can do this shit, why not? Because it’s stupid? Stupidity has not stopped me from doing anything ever in my life.

Also, this is the 825th post on your friend neighborhood Counterforce. That’s wild. We didn’t make it to 1000 posts this year, but that’s perhaps for the best.  Personally, I’m just shocked that I managed to ramble on for nearly 2,010 tweets. I mean, what a silly declaration. Thinking back upon it, at first I was like this:

And then I was like this:

You understand.

Oh man, how creepy is this photo below?

Right?

Also, New Year’s Eve is almost upon us. Time to celebrate!

Also, this is fog porn:

from here.

And this is the first x-ray picture of a lightning strike:

from here.

Speaking of “science fiction,” the recent Doctor Who Christmas special was fucking wonderful.

So fun and smart and a nice little twist on Dickens’ A Christmas Carol cause, hey, why can’t the ghosts of Christmas’ past, present, and future be time travelers and holograms?

Michael Gambon was brilliant, but ruthlessly mean and joyously funny in places. And while the show did play around with some of it’s own rules towards time travel (and that’s why we have rules about time travel, folks: so they can be broken!), I found the idea of one watching their own past and memories change before their very eyes to be fascinating. Plus, the interesting but slight references to “the silence.” And I had to love the nice little nods to the recent JJ Abrams Star Trek movie with the copious lens flares on display of the crashing starship’s bridge.

Honestly, it was just nice to have Doctor Who back. The trailer for the upcoming season at the end of the special was a nice little tease as far as potential goes. Can it be April already?

Also, I’m worried that this (below) is what women must think of me whenever they see me…

from here.

Sigh. And I’m just trying to be normal and cool and down to earth and approachable. We can’t all be perfect, can we?

from here.

Oh well. Remember this always:

from here.

This is a picture from Tron Legacy

…which I hear was pretty terrible, but that Olivia Wilde was the best part of. Is it me, or is Olivia Wilde totally the new Angelina Jolie?

I mean that based on a lot of things, like her acting ability, her potential, the type of roles she’s taken in the past, but also based on her seemingly having that same ability that Angelina Jolie has to turn straight girls a little curious.

You know?

This is an abandoned theater in Detroit:

from here.

This is a monolith:

This is some good solid crazy fun rough housing:

And this is some old school adorable chillaxing right here:

The last six months or so on this blog and in my life have been… weird, to say the least. I’d go into more details here, but quite frankly, I don’t want to. I’ll just say that due to illness in my family, my life got a bit… derailed and I’m astonished that I’m seeing the end of this year without having gone totally insane. Or maybe I have already gone totally, stupendously insane and it’s just helping me see the end of this year more clearly? Like 3D glasses? That’s a comforting thought, right?

Anyway, at some point this will all be over and I’ll get back to some kind of semblance of “normal,” whatever that is. Are we still doing that? “Normal?”

Hopefully, if we’re lucky, we’ll be right back to asking “Who’s your daddy?” in no time flat.

This is what religion looks like:

from here.

And this is my basic worldview in a nutshell:

This is an example of the happy medium between sanity and fear:

This is an example of how Batman is both a master of surprise and also quite probably a huge pervert:

And sadly, no matter what we say or do, Lost is still over and done with:

Oh well. Three days to go. And then…

Fingers crossed about something exciting happening in those next three days (after all, a good deal of people on this planet thought that their magic wizard man came back from the dead in that same amount of time) but not holding my breath. Exciting, but not too exciting. Wow me, thrill me, blow my mind, fuck me over and fuck me up (but in a good way, please), but remember that when the sun comes up, I’ve still got bills to pay and TV shows to catch up with. Three days to go, promises to keep and miles to go before we sleep, and a long journey sprawling ahead of us through mountains upon mountains. This is both the place we made together and the journey we started together and I’m gonna be there with you. And wherever we end up, whatever new definition of home or normal we excavate, when we do we’ll turn to each other and say, “This must be the place!”

The batmobile lost a wheel and the Joker got away…

I’m sure I said something similar to this as a kid:

You know?

In fact, as a kid, Christmas left me with more questions than anything else. Looking back on it now, I adore it’s innocent, silly magic, the inherent wonder that comes with the whole season, and the basic premise of Santa Claus, the North Pole, elves building toys for probably slave-like wages, and reindeer and shit, but I remember as a kid… not so much thinking that it was bullshit, but being confused by the holes in the story, the things that just blatantly didn’t make sense or jive with, you know, reality and what have you.

from here.

Sometimes it was just semantics and logistical things that perplexed me, but sometimes it tended more towards the philosophical…

But I guess somewhere in there the ideals and notions I have about the season now – be them naive, hopeful, confused, tattered, reaching, labored, dreamy, and all ultimately cynical – were born:

from here.

Oh well. Hope you had a great one!

The Human Fund.

It’s that time of year again…

Since I mentioned it the other day, I’ve been watching a lot of old Seinfeld clips on youtube. And, related to that, I have three random thoughts for you…

1. This video…

…is a roundtable get together from the big box set of the entire Seinfeld series featuring Jerry Seinfeld, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jason Alexander, Michael Richard, and Larry David himself. It’s a pretty fascinating and fun look into the behind the scenes of the show, with the cast and creators going over their successes, their failures, and how hard it was to have that much fun being that great. Related to that…

2. One of the things they go into in that roundtable get together is how hard it was to keep a straight face or to do a lot of the scenes right because of how funny each other was. The biggest offender to this, apparently, was Julia Louis-Dreyfus.

And as much has been said about how great her performance as Elaine Benes was, I still don’t think it was nearly enough. What you always saw onscreen was so trailblazing and yet so understated. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, of course.

And all that said, Julia Louis-Dreyfus is undoubtedly a beautiful, incredibly talented actress, and one who grown into full MILFitude as she’s aged so wonderfully. And these behind the scenes clips and bloopers are amazing in how infectious her laughter is. It’s an intoxicating thing, all men know, to make a beautiful woman laugh. It’s a rejuvenation on your part, a kind of validation you desperately seek. But even more holy of a grail: Making an incredibly funny woman laugh.

3. Also, I just realized that the guy who correctly guesses “Gonorrhea!” in the episode where Kramer gets the job as an actor acting out symptoms for medical students to practice diagnosing is none other than…

…Daniel Dae Kim.

How weird is that?

The weapons of science.

via XKCD.