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Jack Rusher
La vie est faite de morceaux qui ne se joignent pas.

Friends

    wearing stellar
    I spend a great deal of time on the internet, so I’ve seen my share of freaky fetish behavior, but this bust of @distorte dressed as an ancient warrior, itself carved out of an enormous chunk of pure Irish butter is among the oddest.

    I spend a great deal of time on the internet, so I’ve seen my share of freaky fetish behavior, but this bust of @distorte dressed as an ancient warrior, itself carved out of an enormous chunk of pure Irish butter is among the oddest.

    Species of Spaces

    The New York Public Library has continued delivering my queue of inspirational Januariad fodder, presumably because it doesn’t know that the Januariad is over.

    Re-reading Perec’s Species of Spaces, I once again consider a pair of possibilities that have ever haunted me:

    To put down roots, to rediscover or fashion your roots, to carve the place that will be yours out of space, and build, plant, appropriate, millimetre by milimetre, your ‘home’: to belong completely in your village, knowing you’re a true inhabitant of the Cévannes, or of Poitou.

    Or else to own only the clothes you stand up in, to keep nothing, to live in hotels and change them frequently, and change towns, and change countries; to speak and read any one of four or five languages, to feel at home nowhere, but at ease almost everywhere.

    I’ve always chosen the latter, but with an undercurrent of yearning for a simple, bucolic life in a Dordogne village.

    Why Bike So Far, So Long?

    leitha:

    Before we embark all the little details of planning our Berlin-to-Paris bicycle trek, I wanted to understand why the involved parties were interested in doing such a thing.

    As it turns out, they had fascinating answers. Yesterday, we heard thoughts from Miss Lauren on strength and the evolution of self-perception.

    Today, Jack gives us a peek into his long love affair with the stately metal steed.

    image

    When I was just a boy, nine or ten years old, I heard that the bones of a herd of ex-bicycles were rusting away in a shed on a neighboring property. I cobbled together a working road bike from the bits and pieces I found, and as it turned out this simple machine was the real-life version of the Seven-league Boots of which I’d read in fairy stories.

    The bicycle didn’t burn fuel or eat food, required nearly no maintenance, and it was always there, waiting to carry me wherever I wanted to go. It was not just a conveyance, but a lesson in freedom and self-reliance [1,2], and I’ve never been long without one since that time.

    As for why I’d choose a bicycle for this summer’s ramble: I have traveled extended distances on horses and motorcycles, in cars and caravans and kayaks, asleep aboard overnight trains and intercontinental airplanes, in steerage on ferries, and on foot for hundreds of kilometers at a time, but there remains something magical about seeing the world from the seat of a bicycle.

    [1] “The bicycle has done more for the emancipation of women than
    anything else in the world.” — Susan B. Anthony, 1896

    [2] “On my tenth birthday a bicycle and an atlas coincided as presents and a few days later I decided to cycle to India.”
    http://www.dervlamurphy.com/about.html

    Marsyas Sings the Blues

(3D scan courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art).

    Marsyas Sings the Blues

    (3D scan courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art).

    I spent a little time yesterday building a computer program to interrogate a year’s worth of data from a little over twelve thousand weather stations all over the world to find out which places have what I would consider the most comfortable year round climate. The criteria were that it never freezes, never gets above 29°C, and is neither oppressively humid nor overly dry. Other considerations lead me to prefer Western Eurasia, thus the options depicted on the above map.

In the course of doing this, I was reminded of Feynman’s observation when the first electronic computers arrived at Los Alamos:


  There is a computer disease that anybody who works with 
  computers knows about. It’s a very serious disease and it 
  interferes completely with the work. The trouble with computers 
  is that you play with them!


The code is here, the data was pulled from here.

    I spent a little time yesterday building a computer program to interrogate a year’s worth of data from a little over twelve thousand weather stations all over the world to find out which places have what I would consider the most comfortable year round climate. The criteria were that it never freezes, never gets above 29°C, and is neither oppressively humid nor overly dry. Other considerations lead me to prefer Western Eurasia, thus the options depicted on the above map.

    In the course of doing this, I was reminded of Feynman’s observation when the first electronic computers arrived at Los Alamos:

    There is a computer disease that anybody who works with computers knows about. It’s a very serious disease and it interferes completely with the work. The trouble with computers is that you play with them!

    The code is here, the data was pulled from here.

    The life of making money is one of compulsion, and wealth is clearly not the good we are seeking, since it is merely useful for getting something else.
    Aristotle NE 1096a: ὁ δὲ χρηματιστὴς βίαιός τις ἐστίν, καὶ ὁ πλοῦτος δῆλον ὅτι οὐ τὸ ζητούμενον ἀγαθόν· χρήσιμον γὰρ καὶ ἄλλου χάριν. (via superfluidity)
    The Human Scent-o-Pede

He walked everywhere along the frozen streets of New York, this
dedicated pedestrian who was more nose than man.

One February day, fresh snows and cold air held down the odor of rubbish and rats, letting linger scents normally too fine to detect: the faint perfume of a lady’s deluxe bath salts, overlaid with four and one half hours of gentle perspiration; the salty fresh fucked flush of another lady on her way back to the office after a lunchtime frolic; the tobacco, whiskey and sour fear sweat
on a salesman returning to his office for the last time.

Pausing at a café to take in the sweet sticky sugar and acid tang of
freshly squeezed oranges mixed with the sharp bitterness of espresso,
he’s ambushed by the redolence of a pair of passing Russian models,
all cigarettes, alcohol and avarice.

In the subway there is always every smell imaginable, including some one would rather never imagine at all. He always tries to read, but his nose and mind are assaulted by the reek of homeless body funk, over which dance
a taint of regret, a hint of shame and the delicate bouquet of loneliness.

    The Human Scent-o-Pede

    He walked everywhere along the frozen streets of New York, this dedicated pedestrian who was more nose than man.

    One February day, fresh snows and cold air held down the odor of rubbish and rats, letting linger scents normally too fine to detect: the faint perfume of a lady’s deluxe bath salts, overlaid with four and one half hours of gentle perspiration; the salty fresh fucked flush of another lady on her way back to the office after a lunchtime frolic; the tobacco, whiskey and sour fear sweat on a salesman returning to his office for the last time.

    Pausing at a café to take in the sweet sticky sugar and acid tang of freshly squeezed oranges mixed with the sharp bitterness of espresso, he’s ambushed by the redolence of a pair of passing Russian models, all cigarettes, alcohol and avarice.

    In the subway there is always every smell imaginable, including some one would rather never imagine at all. He always tries to read, but his nose and mind are assaulted by the reek of homeless body funk, over which dance a taint of regret, a hint of shame and the delicate bouquet of loneliness.

    A piece of generative video done for the Indelible Dance Company in December.

    Please note the difference between an artist and an artisan: the artist grows in his environment, deriving from it the elements that serve him as a medium of expression — of those differences of tensions to which his personality is subject. The artisan is a producer of things for which there is a demand and which he has learned to produce — after the models that enjoy the highest popularity. Ninety-eight percent of science fiction is a craft, and its authors day laborers who must obey to demand payment. Almost any artist can become an artisan when he strangles his inner voice — or he has no such voice at all.
    Stanislaw Lem, Science Fiction: A Hopeless Case — with Exceptions.