Giuseppe Arcimboldo (The First "True" Surrealist?)

The Great Giuseppe Arcimboldo, Self-portrait

McLuhen once noted: "the need for a ratio and interplay among the senses as the very constitution of rationality." A few years ago I was rummaging through a large collection of books in the far-corner of an Antique shop in a small town, digging through 70+ year old rarities and gems (the years were spread throughout the time-line) that had me soaring into some invisible obstacle (strange to most people) of some supramundane seraphim (and this wasn't "Angels and Antecedents," either! - amorinis and the deity-like feeling of floating amongst such a miraculous spectacle of magnificent book-love; completely swooned over) that my "en route" was about as common as the Titus Andronicus, for the most part. Upon arriving, eyes growing operatic, like a body-song, and I always felt as though I was out picking private plums for my Grandmother (we used to pick raspberries and blueberries together; much love, much love), books in my presence, like something burning within!. . .(Napolean once said that he would cover his Josephine "with a million kisses burning as though beneath the equator."). . .promptly entrained (drained) all of my energy into searching for hours on end (all-the-while wishing [and muttering to myself] how I wish I were "rich enough to purchase these books").

Vertumnus (portrait of Rudolph II), 1591

Some of the books I gathered (a must-need) were the rarities entitled, Horizon: A Magazine of The Arts (but in hard-back book-form!), which, from my knowledge, were at least published throughout the 50s and into the 60s (though I am uncertain of their stopping-point). One of these books [November 1960 * Volume III, Number 2] had an interesting painting that I still haven't "gotten over" that was the very first image one sees when they open the book (before the contents-page); ie: the Frontispiece.

Of course, after aspiring to find out who the painting was by, I came across the small write-up on the following page of the painting, which says the following:

The Trojan Horse, that eternal symbol of deceit, was an innocent-looking
wooden effigy filled with armed and waiting Greeks. When the Milanese painter
Giuseppe Arcimboldo addressed himself to this idea, he carried it a step
further: omitting wood, he composed his horse entirely of the writhing bodies of
soldiers. Its eyes are two dark heads, its mane a row of flaming torches.
Arcimboldo's grotesqueries were much admired by the Hapsburgs, who made him
court painter at Prague from 1562 to 1587. Today he is admired by the
surrealists, who look at him as a precursor.

Summer, 1563

At that time, which seems like so long ago, I had already been studying the surrealists, so my eyes gleamed with joy when I read the final line of the frontispiece-contents, "Today he is admired by the surrealists, who look at him as a precursor." The keyword for me in that sentence is precursor. "Amazing!," I thought to myself, which I said a few times in my mind. For me, it was like the singing-scene when the Queen enters from the play, The Play of Daniel, in which she sings, ". . .with sonorous tones of strings and voices let music now be made." And, oh, my heart was certainly singing!

After researching this amazing Italian painter, I was completely struck by the surrealism of his portrait-work, and then concluding that this fellow was far ahead of his time (which, I imagine I am not the only one whom has concluded such ideas!).
Perhaps the first Surrealist of all-time? Salvador Dali, mind you, was a fan of his work, which should tell you a little something. From Wiki: "Arcimboldo's conventional work, on traditional religious subjects, has fallen into oblivion, but his portraits of human heads made up of vegetables, fruit and tree roots, were greatly admired by his contemporaries and remain a source of fascination today. Art critics are now debating whether these paintings were whimsical or the product of a deranged mind."
Since these events, Arcimboldo has gone on to become one of my favorite painters. I periodically find that I want to paint in similar elegances. Apparently I am not the only one. Check out Jan Švankmajer (a Czech surrealist) who has, himself, influenced such famous names as Tim Burton, Terry Gilliam and The Brothers Quay to name a few.
Other good reads about Arcimboldo here, here and here. (I want those models!)

Flora, 1591


Chris Marker's "La Jetée" (1962)

Poster for La Jetée

Chris Marker, a French film-maker (and writer and photographer, among the thrips and ranges he possesses) created La Jetée in 1962; a short, 28-minute masterpiece (black and white) that was created using mostly still-images while a narrator fills the viewer in on the going-ons (the "voice-over") of the story. The only non-still image that is in the film is when a woman flutters her eyes to the camera as she wakens from a dream (!!!). La Jetée tells the bizarre story of a "post-nuclear war experiment in time travel"; not to mention, of course, a film about war and memory. Or, perhaps the lack of memory, depending on the science of observation (undifferentiated slaughter of the eyes!).

The story takes place in (or "during") War World III, in Paris, under the crumbling chaos of the city. Van Gogh once said, "I am painting infinity," and somehow this particular film allows me to reflect back on that comment. But in reverse. However, the film, to me, is like disassembling permanence. In all of this, where is the body politic[?], I thought. Anyhow, a man (the man in the image above) is sent back to the past and back to the future to supposedly save all of mankind.

From Wiki: "In the movie, the survivors of a destroyed Paris in the aftermath of World War III live underground in the Palais de Chaillot galleries. They research time travel, hoping to send someone back to before the devastating war to recover food, medicine, or energy for the present, "to summon the past and future to the aid of the present". The traveler is a male prisoner; his vague but obsessive childhood memory of witnessing a woman (Hélène Chatelain) during a violent incident on the boarding platform ("The Jetty") at Orly Airport is used as the key to his journey back in time. He is thrown back to the past again and again. He repeatedly meets and speaks to the woman who was present at the terminal. After his successful passages to the past, the experimenters attempt to send him into the deep future. In a brief meeting with the technologically advanced people of the future, he is given a power unit sufficient to regenerate his own destroyed society. On his return, he is cast aside by his imprisoners to die. Before he can be executed, he is contacted by the people of the future, who offer to help him escape to their time, but he asks to be returned to his childhood. He is returned and finds the violent incident he partially witnessed as a child was his own death as an adult."

The arrangement of the film is stunning, and when I first saw this film (during TCM's Short Film Festival) a couple of years ago (though I had read rviews about it long before realizing TCM was going to be showing it), I found myself questioning my own creativity (!!!) and Imagination (!!!). McLuhan: Imagination is that ratio among the perceptions and faculties which exists when they are not embedded or outered in material technologies. The mayhem in this film is "haunting"; not only with its consolidation thrusted in original-style, but also the film's sheer brilliance in allowing the viewer to be somehow intertwined puzzingly (without being able to actually see the "motion" of each "scene"), like some Apocalyptic-undercutting that could flip shade and shadow into pancakes of light! The mightily measuring-tape was out from my mind as if I had been measured (and, as I imagine, the viewer, as well; all viewers; everyone who has had the opportunity to view this film) by the mere surge at which somehow decontructs our stricture of imagination. Or, perhaps this is my own 'awareness' or Jack-knife!

Interesting to note some of the influences as well (via Wiki): "The scene in which the hero and the woman look at a cut-away trunk of a tree is a reference to Alfred Hitchcock's 1958 film Vertigo, which Marker also references in Sans Soleil." "A famous tiny bar in Tokyo is named La Jetée and is decorated with posters of the movie (I must visit someday!). "The music video for Son of Sam (song) by Elliott Smith (directed by Autumn de Wilde) was inspired by "La Jetée"." Terry Gilliam's 12 Monkeys was also inspired by La Jetée. {to name a few}

In closing, this film must certainly be experienced, if anything for the totality of the diversified field at which is portrayed (running around with Fred Flintstone feet!). On of my all-time favorite films. Top 50, at least.


Rock Hudson in "Seconds" (1966)

scene from the eerie, psychological-thriller, Seconds

Once stated: "One of the ultimate psychological thrillers, as if sprung from Kafka, about a man given the ability to start his life over with a new identity and career. Goldsmith’s wonderfully eerie and disquieting work was a key element to this film that looked and sounded like nothing previous." And one must be certain, you won't be the same after seeing this bizarre film (buy it here for an amazingly-low price! A steal!) that featured the underrated Rock Hudson! It's almost like some "agony of passion" that is partnered within this film, and one must un-pop the cork and then chew on it.

The Plot, as following, from the ever-wonderful Wiki: "Arthur Hamilton (played by John Randolph) is a middle-aged man whose life has lost purpose. He is disengaged at his job as a banker, and the love between him and his wife has dwindled. Through a friend whom he thought had died years earlier, Hamilton is approached by a secret organization, known simply as the "Company", which offers wealthy people a second chance at life. The Company, in the person of Mr. Ruby (played by Jeff Corey), interviews Hamilton, and resorts to blackmail to convince Hamilton to sign on, foreshadowing the unfortunate consequences of accepting the Company's assistance."

"The Company makes Hamilton appear to have died, by faking an accident with a corpse disguised as him. Through extensive plastic surgery and psychoanalysis, Hamilton is transformed into Tony Wilson (played by Rock Hudson) As Wilson, he has a new home, a new identity, new friends and a devoted manservant. The details of his new existence suggest that there was once a real Tony Wilson, but what became of him is a mystery."

"The remainder of the film follows Wilson as he copes with the consequences of his new identity. Relocated to a fancy home in Malibu, California, where he works as an already established artist, he commences a relationship with a young woman named Nora Marcus (played by Salome Jens) and for a time he is happy, but soon becomes troubled by the emotional confusion of his new identity, and by the exuberance of renewing his youth. At a dinner party he hosts for his neighbors, he drinks himself into a stupor and begins to babble about his former life as Hamilton. It turns out that his neighbors are "reborns" like himself, sent to keep an eye on his adjusting to his new life. Nora is actually an agent of the Company, and her attentions to Wilson are designed merely to ensure his cooperation."

"In violation of Company policy, Wilson visits his old wife in his new persona, and learns that his marriage failed because he was distracted by the pursuit of career and material possessions, the very things in life that others made him believe were important. He returns to the Company and announces a desire to start again with yet another identity. The Company offers to accommodate him, but asks if he would first provide the names of some past acquaintances who might like to be "reborn."

"While awaiting his reassignment, Wilson encounters Charlie Evans (played by Murray Hamilton), the friend who had originally recruited him into the Company. Evans was also "reborn", and also could not make a go of his new identity. Together, they speculate on the reason for their failure to adjust, attributing it to the fact that they allowed others, including the Company, to make their life choices for them. This realization comes too late, as Hamilton learns that failed reborns are not actually provided new identities, but instead become cadavers used to fake new clients' deaths."


In my opinion, John Frankenheimer is one of the most underrated film-directors in the history of cinema, and I truly believe that, for a vast number of reasons. The man who directed such masterpieces as Birdman of Alcatraz, The Manchurian Candidate, Seven Days In May to name a few, doesn't often get the acknowledgements that he naturally deserves. Then again, maybe I am just beating around the bush, and am unaware of it if he has, but to my knowledge, it seems almost faint. Seconds is a must-see. You won't be let-down, believe me...

The Poster for Seconds - This is a Must-See!


Henry Irving, Bram Stoker and Dracula's Castle

left to right: Bram Stoker, Henry Irving

A couple of moons ago, I was introduced to Henry Irving through a relatively quick systematic-casuality (meant in the best possible presentation) which came upon me while visiting my uncle for a spell one summer evening. Amidst such discussions, merely to raise the question, or questions, of whatever-we-could-think-of at the time; late and challenging; tired and evidently shredded from countless hours of experiments (not to mention the primary reasoning behind this sudden lapse of unanticipated content: sleep-deprivation), of course "Dracula" came to mind. In all actuality, it was somehow Bram Stoker that stitched the path (being my uncle has been a fan for years and years, since he was a young tot) of conversative-direction (the science of ever-moving Language!) this night, if only for a brief moment of dispersity. In any event, the frequences moved upon Bram Stoker, as mentioned, which lead to my uncle going for the book-shelf to pull off his undusty copy of a biography about Mr. Stoker (I say "undusty", in this case, essentially to describe how often these things, these books, these documents actually get used, like Shelley's Frankenstein, or the biography on Shelley, as well), in which he had wanted to know more about the man named, "Henry Irving", who was naturally mentioned in the book. Of course, knowing of the possible influence, the book didn't particularly give a complete recollection of the entire spectrum of what Mr. Irving "was all about."

Further-on, it is learned that Henry Irving, the trained Shakesperian actor (and friend of Stoker) who performed on many a-stage, was apparently the inspiration for Bram Stoker's character, the gothic-God, Count Dracula. Henry Irving, known for his "dramatic presence, gentlemanly mannerisms and affinity for playing villain roles", was essentially thrown directly into the pot. It is said that Irving never agreed to perform the role on-stage, and I often wonder why? I mean, after-all, he did once perform as Mephistopheles, amongst the many. Perhaps he was somehow sentimental in this realm? Perhaps overwhelmed? Intimidated? Either way, if one studies his facial-characteristics/external composition, and if you are familiar with the descriptions from the book, then you can really see a chemistry of emphasization here, which is all so beautiful to me.

It's also interesting to note that The Dead Un-Dead "was one of Stoker's original titles for Dracula, and up until a few weeks before publication, the manuscript was titled simply The Un-Dead." Apparently Stoker's original name for the count was going to be "Count Vampyre" (too simple!), but while he was supplying himself with a vast accompaniment of research, Bram Stoker came upon the word "Dracul" (Romanian meaning "Devil"), which intrigued him enough, obviously, to essentially plop an "a" at the end and the rest is history.

Earlier this year, I was astonished (but not really) by the occurrence of events that took place in regards to Vlad Dracula's castle. That being said, of course, The Castle Came Up For Sale! Naturally, this lead to my infatuations/imaginings of living there, somehow obtaining the 78 million dollars needed (not to mention a few extra mil that would be needed for the insane taxes that would be quite costly) to purchase the home near the Transylvanian city of Brasov. Apparently there have been eerily-bizarre sightings of spooky-happenings there, so that would be all-the-more worth-while for me, since that is essentially right up my alley. "I ain't afraid of no ghost!" La-la-la. For a while there, I was jokingly asking various people for a "78+ million dollar Loan", but not telling them why. Or, well, not telling them "right away" the reasoning, allowing their brains to wonder, to float upon the sea of ponderism.

Vlad Dracula's Infamous Castle in Brasov; Ah, If only


Way Out (1961), and Lucia Pamela!

Way Out (article from FILMFAX, continued on the site...)

In 1961, this creepy television series (hosted by the great Roald Dahl [he's everywhere it seems, in similar fashion as to how Richard Matheson, credits-galore, can be found on many, many various noteworthy publications, television shows, films, &c., &c.]) followed The Twilight Zone, which to some people, is even more bizarre than Rod Sterling's once unlimited series of the excessively-weird.

However, Way Out unfortunately didn't last as long as Twilight Zone, which was limited to only 14 episodes. What is even more remarkable, to me, is that these episodes are quite obscure, and yet to exist on any DVD-format (not even VHS for that matter!) and people have been ranting and raving for this series to be released for the longest time, but nothing has come about. Thanks to the greatness of YouTube, rarities can be re-discovered (though a DVD-set would be much more fluent, of course), and luckily (or thankfully) a few of the episodes can be seen there. Start here with "The Croaker" and carry on with the others. From that particular video's "About This Video" section on the right, the following is stated: "This rare series has never aired since 1961 and never released on video. Of the 14 episodes, 5 of them (including this one) have been floating around on the net, but the only way to see the other 9 elusive episodes is to pay a visit to The Museum of Television & Radio in NY." Ah, such a shame.

Another great "artifact" about this series was the fact that Dick Smith did all of the make-up works, which is another reason to check them out (and keep all fingers crossed that this series will be rightfully-handled and properly-satiated in the future for a DVD-release!).

Read more about Way Out here and here. The second link has images that can be clicked on for the bigger version (well worth the viewing-pleasure, in my opinion!).


In other thoughts; everyone should listen to Lucia Pamela's Into Outer Space With Lucia Pamela. From Deuceofclubs.com, it says: Former Miss St. Louis Lucia Pamela was obsessed with the moon. She wrote songs about the moon. She claimed there were animals on the moon. She even claimed her album was recorded on the moon. They used to say that people obsessed with the moon weren't quite right. (Hence, the word lunatic.) But I think they weren't quite right. Lucia's pretty much out of it these days, which is a damned shame. But her grandson Kenny is carrying on the tradition with Spaceship Kenny.

In fact, she has since gone on to her reward now. She once said: You can't live life going backwards. You must go forward. She lived up to the age of 98. Apparently she thoroughly stood by her positive quote! Find out more about her here. Another interesting site about her here (which has sound, and animation!).

Lucia Pamela



Caesalpinia coriaria

The coolest tree, ever. My absolute favorite tree, ever.

Wiki says: "a leguminous tree or large shrub native to the Antilles, southern Mexico, Central
America and northern South America. It grows to 9 m tall, often much less and very contorted in exposed coastal sites. In other environments it grows into a low dome shape with a clear sub canopy space. leaves are bipinnate, with 5-10 pairs of pinnae, each pinna with 15-25 pairs of leaflets; the individual leaflets are 7 mm long and 2 mm broad. The fruit is a twisted pod 5 cm long. (2nd stanza) The Divi-divi is one of the more well known species of Caesalpinia; it is a symbol of Curaçao and is very popular in Aruba where it is called "watapana". On the islands this tree is never straight because of the wind."

As mentioned, the coolest tree, ever.


Fernando Pessoa (Poet, 1888-1935)

I wonder if I am the only person who finds Fernando Pessoa one of the most depressing poets ever? The apoplexity of some of his idealogies and thought-processes are so negative that I can't merely stand to read some of his works/letters/thoughts. Go here to get a glimpse. When he was plagued with a fever, lying in bed, he wrote:

I am nothing
I shall never be anything
I cannot wish to be anything.
Aside from that, I hold within me
all the dreams of the world.
Today, I’m defeated, as if I’d learned the truth.
Today, I am lucid, as if I were about to die.

Though the customarily attempts to say "I am nothing" or "I shall never be anything" is a sign of pessimistic-indulgence and negative-bolts of vexual-rage, there is just "that something" that he was apparently missing. ""I'm defeated, as if I'd learned the truth" indicates to me a man of consistent-longing? Or, perhaps a bold statement that protrudes out of the sockets of a man who looked for the darker corners instead of the ones with the dust-bunnies of light? "I am lucid, as if I were about to die." And, well, as the phrase "misery loves company" comes into play, I can say that it is safe to say that "death loves company" as well. If you speak of such matters, it can only be inevitable.

That said, there are a few of his poems that strike a chord with me. I especially like this quote by Mr. Pessoa: Poets are fakers. Hm, I'd love to read Ron Silliman or Charles Bernstein's commentary about such a quote. A sentence or two would do.


Not too long ago, Questions about: "Which fog is better", came to mind this morning (sweatingitoutgastoolowandoverpriced). Now, this coffee must be glazing me over, like the sky when night fades into white. Over-cast. Saw a suspicious man wearing all-black walking down the street towards my house this morning. "Maybe it's the coffee, again." No, he was really there, and walking towards my house. Closer, closer, closer. "Oh...it's just the neighbor in his work uni." Whew. Weird. That was the first time I ever saw him walking down the street like that. Well, the second time ever, actually. The first time I saw him walking throughout the maze of the neighborhood was when he had his baby with him, rolling her/him around in the stroller. But, walking around in his work-uni by himself early in the morning somewhat threw me off. It's difficult to trust people these days. Maybe I just have "flying saucer eyes." I wish it would rain. We're in a horrible drought. The lakes and rivers and streams are way below their normality, and it's a real shame.


The "corolla, intensely grape-colored" Morning glories that were growing in between the crack of my drive-way and the road have been re-planted near the mail-box. 1) This allows the chances of the beautiful morning glory plant to Live and not get smashed by uncaring tires (or uncaring people); 2) Hopefully the plant will "live" after being re-planted, not to mention the hopes of the plant to begin growing and twisting itself up the mail-box's post. And, since this particular plant is a "common morning glory" (Marubaasagao, Ipomoea purpurea (Pharbitis purpurea) Budouiro, Dark red, purple, Wine color) and a "vine", the chances are quite operative.


Rudolf Sponsel, Erlangen's (?) Frankenstein's Logic
(Looks more like a 'breed' of Dracula to me)

One of a few images of (...) "the cycle of Anti-(G.W.F) Hegel pictures..." Hm, I wonder what Mr. Sponsel had against Mr. Hegel? A matter of opinion, I suppose, like everything else. From the source, states: The text on the picture on the pillar on the head Hegel also comes from above, Section 323, Auxiliary, p. 274: The electricity is the purpose of pure form, which is exempt from it, the shape, their indifference Lift begins; Because the electricity is the immediate salience or even from the shape Coming, they still conditional existence, or not yet the dissolution of the shape itself, but the Superficial process, in which the differences the shape leave, but they have to their condition, And not to them as self-employed.

"All clear?" - Uh, not particularly. From Hegel himself ('aesthetics, Volume 1, p. 60): "Because the artwork is not a content in its generality as such, but this individualized general public, in front of the few sensual outlook. If the artwork is not from the principles, but it underlines the general public with the purpose of abstract teachings, then it Bildliche Sensual and the only one external and unnecessary jewelry and artwork in a broken himself, in what form and content of no more than to grow into one another. The sensuous individuals and the mentally General are then each other outwardly."


Bergman's "Cries and Whispers"

Heart-breaking scene from
Cries and Whispers

Do you want to know the most difficult film for me to watch? Would you like to know of a film that ruptures my tear-sacs into almost phlegmatic-weariness, yet strikes me with the accomplishment of the habitual-emotion of blatant pliancy? Would you like to be informed of a film that is painful for me to view, yet a film that has me yearning for more of the same pain? That almost peculiar feeling of "pleasure" and "pain"; the seemingly realistic frequencies of a film's believabilities, of the human behavior: the power of emotion, the melancholies of sickness and Death; the bizarre submissiveness of Life; "the world of women" that "is very open of (...) gender and sexual politics" at the turn-of-the-century (19th); one of the most moving films I have ever seen? The "erotic mystery" (the "physical decay") of four sisters ("each representing a different aspect of a woman") that embraces you immediately with their presence, traits and idealogies? Ingmar Bergman's Cries and Whispers is this film. Bergman himself explained from the initial script: What it most resembles is a dark flowing stream: faces, movements, voices, gestures, exclamations, light and shade, moods, dreams. Nothing fixed, nothing really tangible other than for the moment, and then only an illusory moment. A dream, a longing, or perhaps an expectation, a fear, in which that to be feared is never put into words. It's really all there. I find every emotion seeping out of me when I watch this film. I find that I somehow become those faces, movements, voices, gestures, exclamations, light and shades and every bit, ounce, degree and shape and folds and formations of those moods and dreams...


Filmomisialism & Lgtru.

Scene from Carnival of Souls (1962)

It's the imagination of originality that ("the day the world gets [more] round?" - God Bless George Harrison!) that gets the loudest ovation and the most hands clapping with an applause. The unaimlessly-multitudinous psyche'-befoggings that sketches the cipher, the imaginationist (God fobid being a little loopdeloopy, eh?!), but ekeh, the 60's produced some of the most critically-acclaim'd cheeseball flicks in history (the "horror genre" dancing to the tunes, shakin' and twistin' and shoutin' to this omnipresent upheavel), though "cheeseball" is slightly over-used like the "Let's get outta here!" quote in films (an ungorgeous nourishing?), yet I Remark, in this corpulence, the 60's-tenure to the bestest celluloid evah, evah, evah. One of those wonderful films from that said underrated Generation (or underrated "film"), is 1962's Carnival of Souls. I imagine the Looking-glass had an entirely regulated mockery, in that the "scare-factor" was at the highest peak during this Era. In this lucious-60's classic, there are quips of surrealistic-boombasticness, and the often over-looked starkness of black and white cinematography (which is quite exquisite, I'd say). No Sven Nykvist here, but even so, it's certainly noteworthy.

Mister Buddwing
, 1966 (Only image I could find)

1966's Mister Buddwing (how many petitions must it take to release this wonderful masterpiece of a film?! [There's not even a poster available anywhere and hardly any imagery, either!]) - The begging-audience can certainly be conquered with a happy-hand of obligement from the "Production Gods" if the manifestations erupt properly. Someone release the lightning! Be Zeus for a moment, will yeh?) is another one that comes to mind (though the 'cheese-factor' in this film doesn't exist. How about sufficient entree's of tasty-desire, perhaps?). James Garner plays "a man who finds himself on a bench in Central Park with no idea of who he is. He proceeds to wander around Manhattan meeting women as he desperately tries to figure out his own identity. Based on the 1964 novel Buddwing by Evan Hunter, the evocatively shot black-and-white drama with a lively jazz musical score was written by Hunter and Dale Wasserman, and directed by Delbert Mann." (Thanks kindly, Wiki). This film is a delightful trip. From the very opening scene, you will know that you are in for quite a peculiarly-enjoyable ride! A Must-see.

The Unforgettable Head (1968)

I watched this film years ago (in which I was intrigued by the idea of Frank Zappa being intertwined with his short-lived cameo-magic) and the super-glue of its uncontrained existence is relentless in taking a chunk of my brain with it. Overburnedstrain of excessive-transsubmergencies! The horrible films of today will never, ever, ever, ever come close to the magic of older gems of set-aside past-years. The old paralyzing, "everything's been done" statement, somehow vibrates through the quelling lands, it would seem. I cringed (and still cringe) when I see previews for films like The Heartbreak Kid that come onto my television-screen, or if a group of people are speaking of its "greatness." Please. Someone pass me a hammer and a nail. If I could echo The Silver Apples for a brief spell: "Where do we go, I don't know," about sums up such a bubbling Yucca!


Don't confuse "cloud tracks" with actual clouds. Aren't most things deceiving? Just ask Charles Thomson Rees Wilson and his Wilson Chamber about it. However, I must now go crawl upon the cloud tracks in the sky.

Lock me in and throw away the key!

More Randomania

The Gates of Paradise
(interesting site if you enjoy Visual Poems, &c.)


Wake Not The Dead
(One of the first vampire stories ever written
by Johann Ludwig Tieck)


Laynie Browne's "A Mullein Sceptre in My Hand"
(a wonderful collection of poems)

Atanta's own Laura Carter and some of her poems
from Typo #9: BRICOLÈ


Tachistoscope Blog: It's worth it to begin from the first post.
Now if only he would provide updates. It has
been almost two years.


Charles Olson's "Projective Verse 1950"


Hilarious, I think.


Robert Grenier's "10 pages from 'R H Y M M S'"



Kenji Miyazawa

Old men with hyper-thick beards always appear to me as being 'lonely' fellows. Sometimes their faces show it. Perhaps even sad fellows, too. I'm not certain the "reasoning" behind this thought, though. Often, seeing said individuals provides me with a persuasion of some ominous "category" (often unintentional), though it may very-well be that these particular individuals whom have the face of a decay'd wharf at the edge of some uncertain embankment, are essentially the Jewels of our Generation (whom grew up [some, unknowingly] with The Who's "My Generation"; ["their"], in other words: a coordinate of the esteem). Slicker than Grace Slick, even. ("Thing"). The ever-present Canvass of Counterculture.


Recently came across a highly-obscure
(and apparently rather "mysterious)
band from Japan, Les Rallizes Denudes.
Heavier Than A Death In The Family
is of notable deliberation.


Odd Nerdrum


by George Maciunas, Jan. 2, 1962.


is a delicious site for lovers of unique, odd, ethnic, experimental
and unusual instruments. I would love to own a
Kaisatsuko or a Harmonic Generator, if anything, just as art pieces.
Don't miss the Bowafridgeaphone, either (made from used
refrigerator grates, and other things!)


Incredibly Strange Albums (and covers, to boot, oot, oot)


Thobias Fäldt Photography


Have fun.


djalma primordal silence


In the meantime:

All you need is love (RrehRaRrehRrehRreh)
All you need is love (RrehRaRrehRrehRreh)



The brand new "d&a Gallery"

Click for the Larger size

Some of my work is going to be showcased at the d&a Gallery for Contemporary Photography in Tel Aviv, Israel in the not-so-distant future, and I am quite excited! It's such a Blessing, truly. Daniela Orvin contacted me a while ago in mentioning to me that she would be opening a gallery and that she wanted some of my work to be showcased. If it weren't for her, then none of this would exist. I seriously can't thank her enough. She is a wonderful photographer/artist and everyone should visit her Here and Here.


A Lapilli of Ideas, Part 1

-Go up to someone and inform them that you enjoy taking walks in the park, and that you especially love to go swinging at the park.
-Tell someone that they look brighter than the sun. Point to the sky with one hand while saying this.
-Go outside and take a beautiful leaf and bury it in the ground. Go back a week later and dig it up and see if it is still there. If it is there, cover it back up while humming your favorite tune. If it isn't there, hum a not-so-favorite tune.
-Go outside and praise the sky and all of Mother Nature. Hug a tree and tell it that you love it. Tell the tree that you will never carve someone else's name into it, because you love it more than anything. (Make certain not to say, "...more than just about anything.")
-Carry a stone to a particular location and drop it there. Go back home (or to another location far from the stone) and paint what you remember of this incident. If you don't have paint, draw what you remember.
-Put your feet together. Keep them that way for a few minutes. Think about nothing else except the way your flesh feels as they are joined. How warm. How cold.
-Buy a new diary, or a new notebook. On every page, write the word Boundary. Each time you write this word make it larger or smaller than the previous page. When you have filled every page, send the diary to someone you love.
-Walk around your home one time. The next time you walk around your home, pretend that you are flying and hold your arms out by your side as if to mimic the actions of an airplane.
-The next time you "hear" an airplane/jet fly over-head, call someone you love and explain to them, in fine detail, what you just heard, and where and what you were doing at the time of this event.
-Go into a forest during the Winter and ask the ground if it needs to be warmed by the breath of One-hundred human-beings. Write down the ground's response on a piece of paper when you get home.
-Paint a picture that reminds you of the word, "Idylls."
-Go up to a stranger and tell them how beautiful they are. When you go to sleep that night, recall their reactions (whether positive or negative) and write down the very next dream that you have.
-Take a picture of a picture being planted, and then plant that picture. Pay close attention.
-Write a story about flowers and how they will eventually change the world. Relate the flowers to humans, especially someone in particular (but don't recall their name). Read the story to someone after you find it to be completed.
-Tear a piece of paper into fourths and send each piece to someone you know.
-Open Blinds as fast as you are able, while letting them "drop" back down just as fast, if not faster, and recall, in the best detail possible, what you saw and heard (other than the sound of the Blinds). Write it down. Send it to someone anonymously.
-Recollect a strange childhood experience and write it down. Send it to a loved one.
-Play a piano to the worst of your ability. Record it. Send the recordings out to various people explaining to them, in a small note, the "newest piano music" you "recently discovered." No matter the reactions to the music, explain to them that it is a "Masterpiece."
-Walk outside naked one cold morning for a couple of seconds. Run back inside as fast as possible, slightly yelling.
-After reading a book, send the book, completely altered by you, to a loved one.
-Cut off pieces of your hair. Go outside and walk around the neighborhood (or the areascape) spreading the pieces of the hair throughout. If you don't have hair, then you can skip this. If you would rather not skip this, then for plan B: Cut off the brissels of a broom and spread them throughout the neighborhood (or the areascape).
-Invite someone over for dinner to your home, noting a specific time. When they arrive, ask them (perplexingly) what they are doing at your home. Mention the "God-awful Hour" jokingly.
-Sit on a bed in a room with one light on and imagine yourself floating in the Milky Way (your eyes should stay closed), imagining the light to be the sun.
-Stay Mute for as long as possible (preferrably all day).
-Whisper into a bottle and close it up as quickly as possible before the whisper drifts out. Send the bottle to a loved one with "Bottle of A Whisper" or "Bottle of Whispers" written on it. The location depends upon your own choosing.
-Select something that someone gave you and give it back to them by either (a) Handing it to them or (b) Mailing it to them.
-Play a game of chess with someone. Before starting the game, forfeit one of your pieces. If you do not know how to play chess, then alter a game that you do know how to play by completely changing the rules. Play it with someone. Video-record, if possible. Send the recording to a loved one, or send/give it to the person you played with a few months later.
-Buy a postcard. Spray the postcard with an aroma. Send the postcard to your own address. When it arrives, tear it up and mail the pieces to a loved one.
-Touch a loved one's wrist. Close your eyes and hum the beat of their pulse. The loved one should listen to your stomach, while they hum the sounds that they hear coming from your stomach. Start a band this way.
-Smell a loved one's hair and ask them if they have ever searched for a needle in a haystack. Respond with only "yes" or "no" if they ask you questions following your question.
-Randomly show up at a loved one's home. Tell them that you have come over to merely touch the walls inside of their home. Once inside (if they let you in), follow thru with these actions, not answering any questions that they (or anyone else) asks you until you have rubbed your hand across many, if not all, of the walls in their home. Afterwards, ask them if they would be interested in a cup of coffee "later."
-Write "Idea" on a piece of paper. Fold it up and leave it somewhere in public where the possibility of someone finding it is high. Continue this trend for several times that same day.
-Buy paintings and other arty items from thrift stores. Alter them. Cut and paste them all together. Send the finished product to a loved one.
-Open a dictionary with your eyes closed. Pin-point, with your finger, a place on the page. Open your eyes. Recall the word that your finger is either "on" or "pointing to." Write down the word on a small piece of paper. Hang the piece of paper from your ceiling. Do this several times, hanging them all from the ceiling so that you have quite a few. Spread them apart from one another so that they aren't jumbled together in one location. Invite people over to see them. Or, wait until someone asks about them. If they begin reading the hanging words on their own, and if they ask questions about them, only "smile" as your answer.


Cymbaline - from the film "More" - Pink Floyd

One of my all-time favorite films.

Antonioni's Zabriskie Point (with Pink Floyd, of course)

The Dramatic conclusion to "Zabriskie Point", and one of the greatest final scenes in film-history.

Zabriskie Point (1970)

Michelangelo Antonioni's "greatest triumph", Zabriskie Point

Text from Here: Zabriskie Point was to be Michelangelo Antonioni's greatest triumph, a crowning achievement in an already seminal body of work and a bold affirmation of his commercial ascendance in America. (...) The real star of Zabriskie Point, however, is the desolate, parched-white landscape of Death Valley, in particular the vista from Zabriskie Point, the desert lookout that gives the movie its name and where Frechette and Halprin consummate their brief relationship in a hallucinatory sex scene. It is an eerie, skeletal expanse of stony ridges and dry stream beds, stunning in its ancient, unearthly emptiness. And the climactic explosion of the opulent desert retreat belonging to the real estate tycoon played by Rod Taylor -- a fit of imaginary vengeance envisioned by Halprin over and over in her mind's eye after she hears of Frechette's death at the hands of the L.A. police -- is spectacular in its composition and compelling, repetitive effect.

But nothing symbolizes the grand designs Antonioni had for Zabriskie Point more -- and the lengths to which he would go to achieve his ends -- than the movie's musical soundtrack, a remarkable mélange of abstract sound sculpture, expansive solo-guitar reveries, full-blown psychedelic rock, old-time country ballads, and 1950s jukebox corn. Even Easy Rider, Peter Fonda and Dennis Hopper's 1969 smash about two bikers on an ill-fated cross-country odyssey, featured a relatively orthodox rock soundtrack comprised of music (by Jimi Hendrix, The Band, and Steppenwolf, among others) that Fonda pulled from his personal record collection. In Zabriskie Point -- a film about the collision of youthful innocence, hardboiled commerce, and social mutiny -- bizarre bedfellows such as Pink Floyd, The Grateful Dead, the Eisenhower-era siren Patti Page, the brilliant guitarist John Fahey, the ethnic-folk-rock fusion band Kaleidoscope, and the hillbilly country singer Roscoe Holcomb could all be heard in strange but effective juxtaposition.

As he did in Blow-Up (which boasted a Blue Note-style jazz score by the pianist Herbie Hancock and a fiery cameo by The Yardbirds), Antonioni used music sparingly in Zabriskie Point, with meticulous attention to placement. A spacious instrumental fragment of The Grateful Dead's "Dark Star" -- just over two minutes taken from a 23-minute concert performance on the 1970 album Live/Dead -- can be heard as Frechette pilots his stolen plane over L.A. A short taste of "Sugar Babe" by The Youngbloods, from the band's 1967 LP Earth Music, plays on a car radio as the lithe and beautiful Halprin first meets Frechette out in the desert. And Halprin hears a disc jockey announce Fahey's "Dance Of Death," a 1964 recording from his Takoma album The Dance Of Death & Other Plantation Favorites, following a radio news report of Frechette's demise.

That radio voiceover was done by Don Hall, a real-life DJ who was holding down the prime-time evening shift at the L.A. underground station KPPC-FM in 1969 when he was approached by Antonioni, through a mutual acquaintance, to work on Zabriskie Point as music coordinator. It was Hall, to a large degree, who brought the catholic vitality of late '60s free-form FM radio to bear on the Zabriskie Point score. "There was no idea, when we were doing the film, that a rock soundtrack meant everything had to be hard, intense, electric music," says Hall, who was officially hired by M-G-M as an A&R executive and company liaison with Antonioni. "I was trying to do a soundtrack using the many different types of music that were being played on FM radio at the time." Many of the previously recorded pieces heard in Zabriskie Point -- "Dark Star," "Sugar Babe," Roscoe Holcomb's jaunty, Appalachian-back-porch rendition of "I Wish I Was A Single Girl Again" -- came from Hall's playlist of personal favorites. One of his earliest suggestions to Antonioni was to use in the desert-jukebox scene Patti Page's sweetly old-fashioned "Tennessee Waltz," written by country songmen Pee Wee King and Redd Stewart in 1948 and recorded by Page two years later for Mercury.

In its original, 11-track vinyl release on the M-G-M label, the Zabriskie Point soundtrack was a testament to Antonioni's deep research of and appreciation for pop music, not to mention his excellent taste. Pink Floyd's "Heart Beat, Pig Meat," heard during the film's opening credits as a radical-student meeting is in process, effectively sets the scene's tone of menace and cross talk with a naked, foreboding pulse-beat and a disruptive sequence of television and radio sound bites. "Come In Number 51, Your Time Is Up" is a cryptically titled remake of the Floyd's volcanic 1968 B-side "Careful With That Axe, Eugene." But its bonfire sound -- all roaring guitars, crashing drums, and death-throe screaming -- is the perfect complement to the movie's cataclysmic finish. The extended piece by The Grateful Dead's Jerry Garcia, a solo-guitar improvisation accompanying the love scene, is not just a highlight of the film -- Garcia's fluid melodicism and elegant, crystalline picking make "Love Scene" one of the finest studio performances of his career.

This lavishly expanded reissue edition of the Zabriskie Point soundtrack -- boasting previously unissued tracks by Pink Floyd and four exquisite outtakes of Garcia's "Love Scene" (the final version is a composite of edits from the full-length improvisations) -- documents in even greater depth the vision and labor that went into the movie's music. In discussing the cinematography of Zabriskie Point, specifically the use of colors, Antonioni once said, "You cannot argue that a film is bad but that the color is good or vice versa. The image is a fact, the colors are the story."

The music created and compiled for Zabriskie Point is an essential part of the film's story -- and one of its saving graces. To listen to it now is to wonder again: How did everything else about the movie go so wrong? Chester Crill, the singer, violinist, and keyboard player for Kaleidoscope, remembers all too well the preview screening at which he saw Zabriskie Point. "When it was over," he says, "there wasn't a person who left that was looking anyone else in the eye. It was the most embarrassing thing that I'd ever been to. Everybody just slunk away."



If I could marry words, I would. Letters falling down the back of my neck: Full-body Language tuxedo. Shiny shoes, marble heiroglyphics. The alter, filled with alphabetics and language, of all genres and types. Standing there, eyes adjusting to the letters of words and all of the letters' family and words' family who would join us, all of us there, at the ceremony. Dictionaries would be alive with grace and glee. I'd smile, my teeth made of words: proverbs, hypertextuality, cut-up and diced texts, expressive-unexpressions of unknown language yet to be discovered. Paragraphs and adjectives as flower-girls. Words, sentences and paragraphs in foreign languages wrapped into one complete ring, for each of us. The minister, a large question mark, pronouncing us the prouncement of what textuality exists of; Humanity to Language, Language to Humanity. A cathedral of Conversings. The love of words and I; sentences and I; paragraphs and I; chapters and I; Language and I: together, adjoined, fully and thoroughly. If I could marry words, I would.


Yoko Ono's "Grapefruit"

Whether by cusp or bog, this book's significance is the lather at which can sugar-coat your temperamental getty-up (knowing that it hasn't "got up and went"): Beckett's “Gurgles of outflow" is only as suitable, in this case, being you like to charm your absurdist-sensibilities. Perhaps, even then (or not) you could burn it afterwards? (She says so.) It's a must-read, I say. This book will undoubtedly get your grapes a'prunin' and your creativity a'swoonin'. As far as myself, I could never burn it. If anything, I would gulp it down righteously with a cold glass of freshly-fetched Milk.

Dear Gills of Light,

Dear Gills of Light,

Something Celestial has happened. I took a bite out of Edward Hopper's ribs and swallowed shadows and luminance of color (1931 Color Space). I stood there, gloaming like a political pickle. I watched my fingers fold inward towards my wrinkled palms, fingertips slowly touching the palms (the equivalence of a dog changing pace on command), caressing and rubbing, like a Capuchin Monkey. Your shadows and chromaticity move me like Wang Xizhi's wrist, rearing geese. I smeared the what was left over the clean flesh of my palms, leaving streaks, dark (deep) red (showing my fruity side) and then a pink-discolorization at the tail of each smear—the reduction of color—undesired, yet debilitatingly-uncontrollable like Kali's energy.

The feeling of almost being touched (deserting breath). The skin crawling before the final motion, like bullets exploding before hitting their targets. It will always be the outer-dimension that runs bare through the silence like a small amphibian—spine-bearing—the development of whatever immense thickness can be discovered. Who are you and aren't you fossilferous?—making contact with suitable unknowns, inhibited like bacterial ribosomes. I see thru you but I don't, like looking thru dirty obsidian. At what point do you blur before I blink? The hook, you enter it rapidly and I dangle off of your unfunctional hoofs like dewlap.

Your exigencies are seen as admirable—no dangerous errors, no mistrust of accumulation—keeping my vanishable appearings and re-appearings amidst the stricture. I won't linger amongst the groupuscules. I have become a human Trichoptera, hatched Homeomorphismically by the physical interaction of light—yet my diametrical shadows won't be withheld any longer. You must keep embracing me as if I were a re-acquaintance. I will forever be your consistent burgeoning.



Ever-expanding Language

Without absolute limitations (the "outer" must be obtained thru the "inner"), upon pronouncing conclusions reached (from personal opinion, or the point of some other capability) that one will either speak, or hold back their assumed 'senseless' phrases in their personal biosphere, (dangling off of a planet like a goat's beard). Those "abnormal compulsive motor impulses" that are at one's disposal aren't always factual. The "facts" (without distracting one's embossed speculation), are honest and eye-raising, depending on one's belief-system; whether or not there's proof to consequence their reactions (assuming that most everyone deliberates upon speech/language), and whether the words are suppressed into subaction, there's often nonsensical statements which are often deciphered as "nonsensical" because of the lack of 'listening skills'; and/or, perhaps by the fact that the leading idea is missing, or somehow temporarily thinned. I've always found photography to be thoroughly similar in all progression; imagery as a "form" of Language. Words "appear" from visuals, which is why we are able to "explain", "describe", &c. what we see (as well as what we "hear" [another "form" of Language] and vice-versa), and provide commentary for people's art, whether electronically-assembled or in other various formats.

If you enjoy the "materialistic" language, then Imagining Language: An Anthology By Jed Rasula and Steve McCaffery is for you, and is a must read, in my opinion. Here and Here are some really excellent reviews/examples of/from the book.

From Öyvind Fahlström's Manifest for Concrete Poetry (1953): MANIPULATE the material of language: that is what will justify a label such as concrete. Manipulate not just overall structures: rather begin with the smallest elements, letters, words. Move letters around, as in anagrams. Repeat letters in words; intersperse alien words: gla-ten-dly; alien letters: aacatioaoana for action; explore children's secret code language; vowel glides: gleaiouwdly. And of course "lettristic," newly invented words. Abbreviationmania to coin neologisms, exactly as in everyday language - we already have Lawleares. It is always a matter of reshaping the material and not allowing oneself to be reshaped by it.


"Rimbaud's Colors" by Kim Kerze

Black Blood
spoke inside my skullsockets shattering my elongated fingerpulses
like an axe struck on an iron floor.

Red Blood
ran across my tonsils & fixed epidemic needles within the rivulets
of my imagination.

Green Blood
careened thru my nerves, pivots, pulled back, suspending
the moment of implosion.

Blue Blood
dreamt the moon into clusters of broken raga drones, poured pages of grief
into a smoking cigarette.

White Blood
a billowing crackle of static bursting open in my retina- all shadows ghost
into an impossible present


An Obvious Conversation

"I watched a mosquito land on my leg today."
"What was it doing?"
"Trying to suck my blood."
"I watched a moth get tangled in a spider-web last night."
"What did you do?"
"I stood there and watched it try to escape."
"There was a dog in someone's yard when I jogged by the other evening."
"What did it do?"
"It barked at me."
"There are strange red lights in a house in my neighborhood, and they are always on."
"Where are they located?"
"In the Living Room."
"I wore a white t-shirt yesterday and splashed a blue-liquid cologne on the shirt before leaving for the store."
"How did it smell?"
"My legs fall asleep sometimes."
"Because they are crossed upon one another for too long."
"A giant bee frightened me when I went to check the mail the other day."
"Because they make me paronoid and that particular bee lives inside of the wooden base that holds the mail-box."
"The television glows at night."
"What for?"
"Because I turned it off."
"I picked a scab earlier."
"What happened?"
"It bled."
"I bought a hollow, chocolate Easter rabbit."
"What are you going to do with it?"
"Eat it."


I love ov e lov elo ve Diana Magallón's Visual Poetry

& other textual works:

Plinio & the Olive

Hamelín, Hamelín...................L
Brains Brown in ....................I

Kellogs ,burp.........................I
Burp , Kellogs.........................
Who IS it Plinio?.....................L

,Hot ,Hot...............................L


motorcycle chromium

suntrotter whistle
wild eyed

dry dromedary(
)avant dromedaire

thirsty clock
thirsty too

Krijn Van Noordwijk


Several Small Species...all in their right place.

Page 9 of The Notebook, 1993-2007, by Myself and Uncle James Terrance

Lorean eating. Lorean chasing me with her cane while a frying pan gets 'banged' violently by a spoon in the background.

This poems sucks me dry:

975 Harvard

In the kitchen
next to the round, glass table
almost underneath the ceiling fan
there is an energy
I refuse

In the dark
one roommate asks:
do you feel it?

A blur
from the corner
of my eye
in the living room

~Krista Franklin

Thank you, Krista.


If you catch a black widow and leave it in a jar long enough, it will eventually liquidate. This is true. Some people blame others for their problems, but that's like sticking your hand inside of a rattlesnake's mouth and then wondering why it bit you. As a child I roamed around my Grandparents' back yard --- dirt spots formed in the yard as if I had left my mark for future observances, like when one carves their name and date in wet concrete, and later go back to see it there, carved like an ancient glyph. The smell of figs and bird-seed; the home-made "tapeball" baseballs made by Paw-paw that would go flying into the "bye bye zone", never to be seen again. No shilly-shallying: craze for musicals. Harmless peekaboo-sex of the 20s. Suggestions of removability. Incapable. Gesticulated. Loud and long. Duty. Metaphysical horror. Solemn. Swamp before my eyes. Feeble applause nearside, head warmed by the fresh skin of cleanliness. If I overhear you talking. Long yellow curtains. Disparate. Controlling all that we see and hear. Adulation, sweetness and light were winning the day. Apotheosis. Breathing brittle. Dilineation. Hand to mouth. Festooned with cables. Bristling brooms. Unctuous. Sociological syndrome. As reticent and reputed. Why annoying? Efficient. Perfunctory. Stung-fresh. Trophies. Mounted steadily. Unremittingly. Impotence. Pinning ones exclusion.

. . .and the ability to listen to two or more things at once when you want to. This sensation occurs to me, particularly when I am lying in bed at night. The over-head fan, moving like a motor, will seem louder, and with the sound of the air and the dust-particles swirling around (unnoticed by the naked eye) can be heard, and my audible-sensories will often pick up the most minute of sounds, including the air against various opened-spaces in small crevices across the room, and when dust-particles land on various things in the room, they are picked up. Thinking to myself (like the constant rotation of a washing machine) also sounds a lot "louder", as if someone else is speaking instead of my own "voice" that I can hear in my mind; but something much more broad and "deeper." These instances don't always occur; but only every now and then, which only last for around 3-5 minutes.

Photograph by Stephan Rabold


For Agnes. A story.

Gag-fly and Nub "mix-up" (for Agnes)


Brain Waves Turned Into Classical Piano Music

"Music of the Hemispheres (EEG diagram)"

From Men's Vogue: Vladimir Nabokov, a notorious insomniac, once called sleep "the most moronic fraternity in the world." Not too long ago, I found myself in the writer's shoes, my brain feverish, like a player piano stuck in an anxious loop. Blame it on Brahms, whose treacherous piano music I was struggling to master for an upcoming amateur performance. After four restless, nerve-racking nights, I was ready to be dubbed a snoozing moron in exchange for some relief.

(Hear how Damian Fowler's brain waves sound when he's active and when he's at rest.)

As it turns out, sleep solace came via a different kind of music. I discovered Brain Music Therapy (BMT)—a bit off the beaten path, but as a music critic, I was intrigued. It's a radical new treatment that converts a patient's brain waves into sounds that heal: some alleviate insomnia, anxiety, depression, and stress, and some boost productivity and concentration. In the United States, it is administered exclusively by Dr. Galina Mindlin, a New York-based psychiatrist, and her associates across the country.

I went along, with some trepidation, to discover the music of my mind. Dr. Mindlin is a reassuring presence, with a soothing Russian accent and gentle manner that quickly put me at ease. After a mini-therapy session exploring my sleeping habits, she used an EEG (electroencephalogram) to record my brain waves. I was asked to relax, and soon imagined myself by the ocean; it seems that waves, whether generated by brain or sea, like to commune.

The intention is to gather alpha waves, which the brain generates when it's in a calm state, as well as beta waves, which are produced when the brain is engaged in activities like talking or debating. BMT captures both signals and converts them into two personal soundtracks (one relaxing, the other energizing), using a complex algorithm that calculates rhythms and melodies from the brain's activities. It then extrapolates changes in tempo and dynamics, and when to use major and minor chords. Twenty comfortable minutes later, the procedure was over and I was sent home to wait for my CD. The turnaround is just shy of a month, about the same time it took the Beatles to record Rubber Soul.

I was hoping for a soothing groove, but what if my brain sounded like Kenny G? When my CD finally arrived, I was prepared for easy listening's worst. The liner notes instructed me to listen to the relaxing piece "every evening just prior to going to bed two times," so I plugged in my headphones and pressed play. It sounded like a cross between Philip Glass and Bach, played on a piano by a competent amateur. (It's actually created digitally.) I quite liked it, but tried not to analyze the music too much. The fact that it was in C# minor with a weird time signature seemed beside the point, although slightly worrying. It was designed to help me, after all, to lull me to sleep—much better than counting sheep.

Some people, it turns out, don't like their brain music. Tough luck, says Dr. Mindlin. "This is just like taking medication." According to her clinical studies, about 85 percent of patients reported a significant improvement in their symptoms after BMT. As for my own mental lullaby, it works. The repetitive rhythms and lilting lines quickly induce a state of drowsiness, making my insomnia a thing of the past. Conversely, the activating music—bouncy and brisk—is rather like a cup of coffee for the brain. I listen to it every morning for a burst of get-up-and-go.

The ultimate goal of BMT, which costs $550 a session—far less than regular doses of Ambien—is to teach the brain to relax on its own and, eventually, to use the therapeutic music more sparingly. Dr. Mindlin says it takes around three to four weeks of listening to see results. After several months, the music may become so familiar that the brain can even autosuggest a relaxed state simply by recalling the melody. Soon I should be able to perform it on the piano and play myself to sleep. It's a whole lot easier than Brahms.


I'm currently planning on (hopefully) having this done of my own brain waves. Apparently, like everyone's make-up/genes/finger-prints, &c., &c., each brain wave has its own unique soundscape. Which, in realistic sense, everyone has their own Chopin sitting directly in their brains! Thanks to the technology of today, each of us can have our own masterpiece placed on cd, straight from our own noggins.

Dr. Galina Mindlin: "Brain waves are translated into music digitally with a special algorithm. It took many years and the effort of a multidisciplinary team of clinicians, researchers, mathematicians and musicians led by Dr. Iakov Levine to develop this algorithm. Once the brain waves are converted into musical sounds, they are placed on a CD with a relaxing file and activating file and instructions on how to use them."


Mahler (1974)

, 1974

Representations of human behavior (failing inductive regulators? - Oh, my) and the unique substance of a mad composer (Insanity! - a Mandrake herb laced with argot, perhaps), it's no bowing head of some Roman Pontifical (certainly those "gibbering specters of the dead" have arisen here, out of Mr. Russell's brilliant mind), but the eclipse continues to darken once the film carries on. It's no wonder this rare film has become a "cult classic" (with scientific evidence, of course) amongst the efficacy of certain seeds that have been shaken over time.
If the "opening scene" isn't an indicator that you're in for a dynamo-burning (your head will look like a ''Pharaoh's serpents'' ash - [blinkblinkblink]), then perhaps you should turn it off, otherwise you won't want to miss this trippy concoction of cinematic strange-mesh. "Would you like to say something before you leave - perhaps you'd like to state exactly how you feel - we say goodbye before we say hello"-type polyphase circuits; if even one's psychological torment could be some shred of evidence, occassionally changing directions.

Robert Powell as Mahler

This may very-well be one of Robert Powell's most underrated perfomances. His brilliance (retaining all reflections of administered affection) here is what makes me plant myself into the tangled result.

Personally, I wasn't aware that Mahler was a tormented soul, until my eyes glared thru this film. To a certain degree, it's a symbol of procreation and new life, or the expectancy of how life will take a turn for the better. Though, when the pickings are invited in one's misfortune, the disease of deterioration can only be seasoned through emergences of "outer" stimulation, in which (like so many other people) are the result of unknown personal reactions and "choice." Perhaps Gustav had too many induces of abnormal "potions"...? Even for a moment, like the poet Lucretius, perhaps all he needed was a Bob Dylan-like Shot Of Love! (but even his wife resented his fame! - which, perhaps, may be a formidable indication of a percentile of the mind-set in which he often engaged)

Ken Russell is known for his masterpiece-films about various composers (16 or 17 of them, of which include Strauss and Elgar, to name a small collection. . .), and if Mahler is any indication of how his cinematography envelopes throughout the entirity of such films, I think I may have to dig a little deeper in my wallet and obtain each and every one of them (if they all exist). Then again, with Mahler, the potions of such weirdness is only naturalistic.

Below I've provided a 'clip' from the film to give one a meridian of celestial taste of this bundle of eclectic vapor. . .Do enjoy.

Georgina Hale Mahler 1974 Ken Russell

Certainly one to add to the 'weird film' collection - this is only 7 minutes of a 111-minute film that is quite bizarrely-delicious the entire way thru. Thank you Ken Russell.


Ron Geesin

Vigorous laughter. A "Cough Symphony." Munitional musical weaponry of mass (Con)Instruction! Crackling firescapes. Hums. Sounds. Noises ("rubbed out", back "in", "parade", "decayed"/decade, "divine sandwiches with a frenzied sinew of scattercusp"), poems about strange people and objects—Rest assured, you will feel the electric charge and experimental capacitive over-loads of Mr. Ron Geesin! One of the most underrated artists/musicians/composers in the History of Music (no question in my mind!); not to mention of the Avant-Garde "genre" (a group with a lesser infinite ratio of their contemporaries in the world of common-place "Classical Music" [John Cage: Listen to Beethoven. Or, Mozart. It all sounds the same!])

He co-wrote Pink Floyd's Atom Heart Mother (which was basically his own to a certain degree) and went on to work with Roger Waters on the wonderfully-bizarre, The Body. He has plenty of records for one to eargasm over. Check out his delightful website for more:

http://www.rongeesin.com/ - Ahh... It's You!


The Chess-Playing Turk (Machine or Midget?)

The Chess-playing Turk

I play lots of chess. I am a fan of chess. Here is a delightful "story" about. . .an ingenious robot or elaborate joke?

Baron Wolfgang von Kempelen was a mechanical genius who intrigued 18th-century Europe with his automation, which - dressed as a turk -could not only play chess but win every match it played. It was never revealed at the time that the Turk was a fake - and the baron a trickster with a dazzling sense of the outrageous to match his considerable mechanical ability.

The Turk was built in Vienna in 1769 and sat behind a chest, four feet long, two feet wide, and three feet high. In front of him was a chessboard on which he challenged all comers, shifting the pieces with unerring movements of his left hand.

Touring Europe's courts

Before each game the baron would open all the chest's compartments revealing levers, gears, drums, and cylinders.

Emporer Joseph II of Austria sent the Turk on a tour of Europe's courts where it duly beat its royal opponents, including Empress Catherine of Russia and Napoleon - whose chess does not seem to have equaled his military strategy.

A widely held belief was that the chess was played by a series of talented midgets!

The truth was that a man squeezed into the chest and manipulated the Turk. He kept in touch with the game through a series of magnets attached to the base of the pieces. Below the board small iron balls were suspended by threads. The balls stuck to the roof of the chest because of the magnets above them. When the chessmen were moved, the hidden accomplice could follow the game by watching the balls also moving.

The facts about what the baron always regarded as "mere trifle" to amuse the Austrian court were not known until after
von Kempelen died in 1804, and the automaton was taken to the United States. It was eventually bought by the Chinese Museum in Philadelphia, where it was destroyed by fire in 1854.


Dick Smith - The Greatest Make-up Artist of All-Time

Not only is he the greatest make-up/special effects artist of all-time, but he's one of the most influential make-up artists ever (he helped Rick Baker get started, to name one of the many). His two videos on make-up are "how to" showcasings, in which you can follow his step-by-step guide to creating various make-up procedures (including projects from well-known films). In 1965, he released "Dick Smith's Do-It-Yourself Monster Make-up" which gained instant fame, and is still in print to this day (which has easily sold millions world-wide).

"Count Dracula" (1977 BBC Production featuring Louis Jourdan) and misc.

Louis Jourdan as "Count Dracula" (1977)

After holding my breath for so long, I was thrilled to find out that the greatest film adaption of Bram Stoker's classic book, Dracula, is finally coming out on DVD (thank you BBC!) in September.

This brilliant, definitive version of the story was first air'd in the United States as a three-part extravaganza that televised for three days (three parts). Not many films actually "stay true" to the original book (the other, Herman Hesse's Steppenwolf), but this particular version is easily the best version of Dracula filmed to date (and thank God someone wanted to do it right for once! - Now if only someone could get Mary Shelley's Frankenstein right!).

What makes this film stand out from the others, in my mind, is not only the following of the story and events, but also the fact that the crew went to the exact locations described in Stoker's book to shoot the scenes, and you basically can't get any better than that. Must-see, Must-see, Must-see!


And, since the topic of Bram Stoker's Dracula has entered into my consciousness yet again, I suppose I shall go on to recognize another Early Victorian Vampire story that was written fifty years before Dracula was ever conceived: VARNEY THE VAMPIRE or THE FEAST of BLOOD, which left its imprint on British bookshelves in more ways than one. I find it to be rather intriguing (especially to the historical contexts) and a must-read (relatively short, and readable online) for fans whom are interested in "cause and cure" of vampires from country-to-country.

Varney The Vampire