The summer so far.

Mad linkage:

This is going to be awkward.

Jon Hamm will direct Mad Men‘s season 5 premiere (in 2012).

Terrorist “pre-crime” detector field tested.

The wisdom of crowds is a dangerous, stupid thing.

Of course Annie Hardy has a tumblr.

Important news: Ciara likes being naked.

Michael Jackson’s daughter is going to be a star some day.

Idris Elba is so hot right now.

Pictures from here, here, here, here, here, and here.

Food prices will double by 2030.

Here’s that Jonathan Franzen link that every other fucker has posted somewhere on your facebook, tumblr, twitter, or whatever.

Copanhagen suborbitals upcoming launch attempt in June.

Kevin Fanning on the daily commute.

Read more about that terrible sounding Wonder Woman pilot.

To the blogger who thinks saying “fuck” means I’m dumb.

An excerpt from Mindy Kaling’s new book.

The Hangover Part II has to be the laziest fucking movie ever.

The gospel according to Bill Clinton.

In September, DC Comics will relaunch all their superhero titles with new #1s, other changes.

Here’s a wild new drug that you should surely know about: Oxi.

Michael Kupperman doing Mark Twain’s Autobiography.

Is Donald Sutherland the last person to join the cast of The Hunger Games or could there possibly be more?

Hip-hop loved Gil Scott-Heron.

A drug that could erase your memories of being afraid.

PBS website hacked with a story about Tupac still being alive.

“A rather tawdry device.”

“A rather tawdry device” is how Orson Welles describes “Rosebud” in his Citizen Kane, saying that it’s the part of the film he’s least happy with, and then he refers to it as a “Freudian gag.” This is from Welles’ famous 1960 interview in Paris which was conducted with Bernard Braden, and which I believe just came out on DVD, and is an interesting peak into the filmmaker’s life at that particular moment in time, when he was passionate and still very much immersed in his own powers of making magic. It’s a treat both for completionists and passing film buffs equally. Below is just an excerpt, which I encourage you to check out (as well the interview in it’s entirety which you’ll find linked to above), especially since Welles has some fascinating insights about the films he’s worked on, still working on, the actors he admires, and how Rome, his home at the moment, is being urbanized to the point that it’s starting to feel like “Philadelphia with spaghetti.”

The intimidating and impenetrable fog.

“Writers take words seriously – perhaps the last professional class that does – and they struggle to steer their own through the crosswinds of meddling editors and careless typesetters and obtuse and malevolent reviewers into the lap of the ideal reader.”

-John Updike

A few things for you:

1. Acoustic listening devices devised by the Dutch army…

…intended for use in air defense systems between the two World Wars.

2. Artist Lynda Barry who serialized her graphic novel ONE! HUNDRED! DEMONS!, a work of “Autobiofictionalography,” on Salon a while back, and had a famous story in it entitled “Head Lice and My Worst Boyfriend.” Anyway, the worst boyfriend of the title has finally been revealed

…to be Ira Glass. It makes a kind of sense.

3. One of my favorite quotes about the art of words and the artists who do damage and paint portraits with it is, unsurprisingly, by this man right here…

…and it goes something like this:

“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is really a large matter — it’s the difference between a lightning bug and the lightning.”

-Mark Twain, in a letter to George Bainton in 1888.

4. The Man Men comic book…

that never was.

5. There is an old, abandoned town in the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia that one can only access by the sea or the air…

…and it’s called Bechyovinka, the submariner’s town.

Anyway. Something to think about on your Sunday night. Personally, I’m in a bit of a fog, if you couldn’t already tell…

“The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure pure reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog!”

-Bill Watterson

Yes/No/As Above/So Be Low.

Seeing the invisible.

Space shuttle docked at Space Station looks like a tattoo on the sun.

The ghost cinema of Norwich.

What else is on during Shark Week?

Can Pluto become a planet again?

As above, so below. As within, s0 without.

The mystery of 10:10.

Charles Manson wants to work with Phil Spector.

The three biggest reasons music magazines are dying.

Chemtrails and weather warfare.

When is it okay for kids to run around naked?

from here.

Canadian doughnut chain enters NYC donut wars.

The “Wide-open” future of journalism, according to Ira Glass.

Genes, memes, and the third replicator.

Greatest headline ever: Call for debate on Killer Robots.

A challenge to the comet extinction theory.

We should build a wall to stop the spread of deserts, and also that giant fucking sandworms from Dune.

Hanzo The Razor: “The Snare” and “Sword Of Justice.”

PLAYBOY: Let’s start at the beginning. Tell us the story of how the wondrous mystic prince and the exotic Oriental dragon lady met.

LENNON: It was in 1966 in England. I’d been told about this “event” — this Japanese avant-garde artist coming from America. I was looking around the gallery and I saw this ladder and climbed up and got a look in this spyglass on the top of the ladder — you feel like a fool — and it just said, Yes. Now, at the time, all the avant-garde was smash the piano with a hammer and break the sculpture and anti-, anti-, anti-, anti-, anti. It was all boring negative crap, you know. And just that Yes made me stay in a gallery full of apples and nails. There was a sign that said, Hammer A Nail In, so I said, “Can I hammer a nail in?” But Yoko said no, because the show wasn’t opening until the next day. But the owner came up and whispered to her, “Let him hammer a nail in. You know, he’s a millionaire. He might buy it.” And so there was this little conference, and finally she said, “OK, you can hammer a nail in for five shillings.” So smartass says, “Well, I’ll give you an imaginary five shillings and hammer an imaginary nail in.” And that’s when we really met. That’s when we locked eyes and she got it and I got it and, as they say in all the interviews we do, the rest is history.

PLAYBOY: What happened next?

Good question, from here.

from here.

Women are getting more beautiful. The men? Not so much.

A real heart of darkness.

Owner Of A Lonely Heart.”

No No No.”

Hobos, robots, Mark Twain, jungle princesses, and Michael Kupperman.

Here come the men in black.

Fucking, Austria.

It’s not a fucking joke.

And sex laws.

Were wars and plagues the key to Europe’s dominance?

Three held for “sacrifice” of a girl.

Handerpants.

Sacramentan buys old 45s, finds out they belonged to his mom.

Emails from the dead.

You are here.

from here.

Yes and no.

Cartoon lovers.

Rorschach cheat sheet? Hint: It’s not all vaginas.

Raymond Carver and “cutting everything down to the marrow, not just to the bone.”

The Repulsion of Roman Polanski.

The Inherent Vice of Thomas Pynchon.

Pynchon’s guide to LA.

A Serious Man and The Big Lebowski.

In The Aeroplane Over The Sea on ukulele.

Do Something Real.

We’ll slide down the surface of things…

The magnificent bastards of SCIENCE.

And who’s the craziest, most bad ass, most magnificent and underrated (yes, underrated) science bastard of all time?

Nikola Fucking Tesla.

Hey, I wouldn’t mind having David Bowie play me in a movie.

Or be the star of a steampunk-ish graphic novel (teamed up with Mark Twain against that dastardly Thomas Edison).

Or have a band named after myself. Or have invented a MOTHERFUCKING DEATH RAY. Or eventually something like this:

That is some red hot awesome nerdery, from here.

And here’s a really cool podcast that focuses on Tesla, which I’d highly recommend. Thanks, Lia, for sending it my way.

MAD LINKAGE:

The real live astronauts of the international space station are currently watching J. J. Abrams’ Star Trek movie in, you know, space.

Dad ate my eyes,” the young boy told the police.

Wanna know what happened to the big, stupid neanderthals? They were eaten. By humans.

NASA may abandon plans for a moon base.

The space shuttle Atlantis is on it’s way to repair the Hubble Space Telescope and on the way…

…we were able to see this lovely silhouette of the shuttle against the sun.

13 things that do not make sense. And no, the origins of my sexiness are not examined here.

Flowers on Europa? Sounds like the title of an old sci fi serial, doesn’t it?

The Hobbits are/were “a seperate species.” Good.

Skydiver survives 6,000 foot fall without parachute.

Feeling suicidal? Try a little lithium in your water.

China’s sex theme park…

…was sadly demolished before it ever opened. :(

Abuse of child “witches” is on the rise.

The exact location of free will in the brain found?

Should creative workers use cognitive-enhancing drugs?

The Pentagon is looking for telepathic soldiers. Seriously. Did no one see Brian De Palma’s The Fury. I mean, really?

The pressures of modern life may be hastening human evolution. That kind of makes sense, right?

The form of things that must be attended to.

“Man has been here 32,000 years. That it took a hundred million years to prepare the world for him is proof that that is what it was done for. I suppose it is. I dunno. If the Eiffel tower were now representing the world’s age, the skin of paint on the pinnacle-knob at its summit would represent man’s share of that age; & anybody would perceive that that skin was what the tower was built for. I reckon they would. I dunno.”

-Mark Twain, “Was the World Made for Man?

“Can anyone with intelligence really believe that a child born today should be doomed because the snake tempted Eve and Eve tempted Adam? To believe that is not God-worship; it is devil-worship.”

-Clarence Darrow, from “Why I Am An Agnostic.”

from here.

“There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterward you can remove all traces of reality.”

-Pablo Picasso

Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, or The Young Ladies of Avignon, by Pablo Picasso, 1907.

When light enters a dark room through a small hole, it projects the reverse image of the scene outside the room, creating a Camera Obscura.

The trailer for Lars Von Trier’s upcoming Antichrist.

Shockingly, controversy surrounds the stage production of The Vagina Monologues in Kyrgyzstan because of it’s strong sexual content. Seriously.

Fuck that business in Somalia, here’s the most notorious pirates ever.

Mysterious dark matter possibly detected.

Laser money art.

“The more you know who you are, and what you want, the less you let things upset you.

-Bill Murray

Pavement “Something” (Beatles cover)(mp3)

My Brightest Diamond “Everybody’s Got Something To Hide Except For Me And My Monkey” (Beatles cover)(mp3)

R.E.M. “Walk Unafraid” (mp3)

R.E.M. “She Just Wants To Be” (mp3)

It is not the form of things that must be attended to but their spirit. The real is what matters, not the apparent. In politics, reality is that which is unseen.”

-José Martí


Three lives/Distortions.

The topic of privacy and what you do and don’t write on your blog–both your personal blog and a workplace blog–interests me as a question of privacy, but also of voice, of how bloggers present themselves. After all, blogs are personas. We emphasize particular aspects of ourselves, allow things we want to share to be revealed, and try to obscure those we consider private, want to hide, or are not aware of.”

-Susan Mernit.

from here.

“I know this sounds opaque, but I heard British novelist M John Harrison yesterday describing how the construction of identity is changing because “culture,” the factors that acculturate people, have been smeared all over the planet by the Internet. And he sees this is as a challenge for novelists because literature is a description of how people are; it’s about structures of meaning and feeling. And the structure of literary language needs to respond to, or even *lead,* new structures of meaning and feeling.”

-Bruce Sterling, speaking at this year’s SXSWi.

“It’s nice to meet you, Ben.”

Young Ben Linus = Evil Harry Potter!

Speaking of evil…

It’s Cthulhu Cthursday!

Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoons.

Lex Luthor would like a little of that bailout cash, please (starring Jon Hamm).

Comic Book Legends Revealed!

Grant Morrison, fresh off Final Crisis, discusses the new Batman and Robin and his upcoming series about them, Batman & Robin. Depending on who you talk to, the identity of these two new heroes is either a matter of heavy speculation or total foregone conclusions. The new Robin is obviously Damien, the just recently discovered son of Bruce Wayne (whose mother is the daughter of Ra’s al Ghul), but who is the new Batman going to be? There’s been quite a bit of foreshadowing that would seem to indicate that it’s the first Robin, Dick Grayson AKA Nightwing, but a recent theory and interesting bit of speculation (that came with a fantastic set of annotations for Batman RIP, almost rivaling Tim Callahan’s) I read has me wondering if and kind of hoping it will be Tim Drake, the latest/current Robin.

“Everyone has three lives: a public life, a private life, and a secret life.”

-Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Reconstructing Atticus Finch.

The Mark Twain guide to better blogging.

What is reality? Who are we?

And some mad linkage stolen from the geniuses at Mercenary Writers:

Winner of the “worst postmodern article title” award.

Ten literary one hit wonders.

Ten spectacular second novels.

Ten cursed second novels.

The National “Secret Meeting” (mp3)

High Places “From Stardust To Sentience” (mp3)

Clinic “Distortions” (mp3)

Rogue Wave “Eyes” (Yeah Yeah Yeahs cover)(mp3)

“Some complain that e-mail is impersonal — that your contact with me, during the e-mail phase of our relationship, was mediated by wires and screens and cables. Some would say that’s not as good as conversing face-to-face. And yet our seeing of things is always mediated by corneas, retinas, optic nerves, and some neural machinery that takes the information from the optic nerve and propagates it into our minds. So, is looking at words on a screen so very much inferior? I think not; at least then you are conscious of the distortions. Whereas, when you see someone with your eyes, you forget about the distortions and imagine you are experiencing them purely and immediately.”

-Neal Stephenson, from Cryptonomicon.

We’ll see you tomorrow, unless of course Cthulhu gets us first and reality gets all distorted. Or something.