October 8, 2003

Jacques Brel

Go Ahead And Leave Me, See If I Care! Was not what the late, great Jacques Brel sung. Oh no. (Scott Walker, imo, did the best cover.) And last Tuesday a 16-CD collection was launched, with all his songs - and then some, including 5 he specifically stated he never wanted released. I've heard two of the songs - they're wonderful. But the question remains, with echoes of Kafka telling his friend Max Brod to burn all his manuscripts: should the wishes of dead artists be respected? Does time - in this case 25 years since his death - make it any less problematic? Or the fact that the publication was approved by the Jacques Brel Estate, i.e., his widow? (My favourite Brel song, btw, is his wistful, sardonic tribute to his country: flat, boring Belgium: Le plat pays. It never fails to exercise the tear ducts, nope, never...)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 9:57 PM PST - 31 comments

Incredible Web Design

MCCXIII is an excellent club in DC. But the reason I link their site is because I am in absolute awe of their web design.
posted by BlueTrain at 9:52 PM PST - 55 comments

87 billion

Just how large is 87 billion dollars exactly? It's this large, about the size of three costco warehouses by the looks of it.
posted by mathowie at 8:45 PM PST - 58 comments

Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business, indeed

"Now, this:" Neil Postman dies at 72, on the same day Americans elect a "talking hairdo" to high political office. If that doesn't seem ironic, you probably didn't read Amusing Ourselves to Death, his best-known book. But I did, and as I only realized today, it deeply and permanently affected my worldview. Anybody else? (via Atrios)
posted by soyjoy at 8:29 PM PST - 22 comments

Kilokat's Antique Light Bulb & Vacuum Tube Site

Kilokat's Antique Light Bulb & Vacuum Tube Site
From the pre-1900 antique lamp bulbs to the Crookes and Geissler Tubes, box art and ephemera , I enjoyed exploring this man's magnificent obsession.
posted by quonsar at 6:40 PM PST - 13 comments


A third-rate bugging? Did Pennsylvania Republicans plant listening devices to gain an advantage in the next Philadelphia mayoral election? I think they did and in his words, that's the truth!
posted by Bag Man at 5:59 PM PST - 16 comments

Concsience pricker

WiFi-SM is "a Wi-Fi-capable patch you stick on your body so you can feel painful shocks whenever news stories are published containing keywords that you enter into the software". (via Mikes List) Who needs this when we have MetaFilter?...
posted by marvin at 5:28 PM PST - 11 comments

Too sexy for my France, too sexy for my France, too sexy...

But nudity is part of our culture! In a rare move, a French advertising sector association has called on underwear manufacturer Triumph to withdraw a billboard campaign for its Sloggi range, which has been widely condemned as offensive to women. The fear among advertisers is that the ad with its explicit exposure of the models' buttocks will prompt the government to replace the existing system of industry self-regulation with laws on what can and cannot be portrayed in ads.

Some pretty good lines here:
  • "It's the strip-tease context which is the problem in the Sloggi ads. ... It is very damaging for the image of advertising," said Joseph Besnainou
  • "Since the 19th century, the dress code of prostitutes has tended to set the tone for women as a whole," feminist author Florence Montreynard told LCI television.
  • "These models are beautiful by some criteria, but their buttocks are those of adolescents rather than of real women. Are women supposed to get a complex about that?"
  • "But nudity will always be used in adverts in France," he said. "It's part of our culture."

The link to some of the ad creative in question. Caution: Flash required, as well as it being not necessarily safe for France, which means it's definitely NSFW in the English speaking world.
posted by psmealey at 2:46 PM PST - 37 comments

Terry Gross vs. Bill O'Reilly

O'Reilly "self-terminates" interview on NPR's "Fresh Air" In an apparent effort to balance having had Al Franken last week, NPR's "Fresh Air" asked Bill O' Reilly to appear on today's show. Apparently, O'Reilly eventually decided that it was too much of an "attack" interview, and left.
posted by LairBob at 2:29 PM PST - 102 comments

Meet me at the crossroads

The Confluence Project aims to "visit each of the latitude and longitude integer degree intersections in the world, and to take pictures at each location." Includes stories from each documented point.
posted by moonbird at 2:18 PM PST - 14 comments

Escher in 2003!

The results are in! the MeFi guesses weren't too far off, and Escher wins the domokun, while ook wins the booby prize.
posted by mathowie at 2:02 PM PST - 18 comments

Go Nokia!

Looking over this list of corruption levels by country, it is evident that there is some correlation between corruption and quality of life. But which is cause and which is effect? And since these numbers are only relative, are things getting better overall, or worse? How corrupt is your country?
posted by eas98 at 12:57 PM PST - 11 comments

They fixed my boo-boo.

They fixed my boo-boo. (warning - graphic pix)
Did you ever see this picture? It makes the email forwarding rounds ever so often, and is a fixture in the pro-life community. Taken in 1999, it shows a tiny hand touching the finger of one of the doctors involved in a spina bifida corrective operation. At the time, the fetus was 21 weeks old. Late last month, Samuel Armas (the boy the fetus became) testified briefly before a subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee examining scientific and medical advances in prenatal surgery. [more inside]
posted by Irontom at 12:39 PM PST - 22 comments

Motion synthesizer

This animation shows that biologically and socially relevant information about a person can be conveyed in biological motion patterns. You can adjust the moving figure in four areas: male/female, heavy/light, nervous/relaxed, and happy/sad. While I was intrigued by the concept, I'm not completely sure that the moving figure conveyed the state I had intended.
(I found using 'lines' provided a clearer image of someone walking)
posted by darsh at 12:34 PM PST - 13 comments

Effing C.C.

This is really, really f------ brilliant. The FCC says the f-word is OK on network TV, as long as it doesn't refer to the sexual act. Naturally, some groups don't like dirty talk. Is this a sea change in the level of discourse, or is the FCC finally acknowledging that it's useless to protect kids from our favorite four-letter word? (Second link is a .pdf file.)
posted by sixpack at 11:37 AM PST - 104 comments

The Book of Roofs

The Book of Roofs is a site to take your time with. Originally an art installation, the web site is a look at the concept of roofs - anthropological, biological, spiritual, metaphysical, social and political - in a collection of "roof tiles" consisting of short articles, personal narratives, mythological references, quotes, historic events, video and photographs, all related to the concept of shelter. If you feel so moved you can even contribute your own tile. Flash and sound
posted by taz at 11:29 AM PST - 2 comments

Viral Marketing For America?

Is Howard Dean conducting viral marketing? [more inside]
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 10:38 AM PST - 30 comments

What is truth? And does it matter?

Saving Private Lynch From Misinformation.
John Fasano (screenwriter of such classics as Darkness Falls, Megiddo: The Omega Code 2, and Another 48 Hours) offers a very interesting caveat regarding his in-production film about the icon apparent (or not) of Operation Iraqi Freedom. This begs the question: With a public undoubtedly waiting for this made-for-TV movie to know "what really happened to Jessica" and such a blurred line between truth and propaganda, is this responsible movie-making? Many Americans turn to Hollywood for their history lessons, so I have to wonder...
posted by grabbingsand at 9:15 AM PST - 21 comments

le petit mort

Weblogging, the fad most poplular amongst teenage girls, is dying. The "blogosphere" will number ten million souls by the end of 2004, but almost all of them will be dead.
posted by the fire you left me at 8:34 AM PST - 31 comments


US TV news too liberal, say Americans. Nearly half of Americans think its news media is too liberal despite the rise of controversial hard-right cable channel Fox News. Only 14% of Americans believe the media to be too conservative, according to a poll by Gallup.
posted by MintSauce at 8:23 AM PST - 68 comments

George (the Elder) Loves Teddy

Kennedy To Receive Bush Public Service Award
Say Whaaat? "The George Bush Presidential Library Foundation announced that United States Senator Edward M. Kennedy would receive the 2003 George Bush Award for Excellence in Public Service." The Elder Bush selects the winner of this award personally... This must mean either that (a) W. had stopped accepting phone calls from his dad or (b) he will now...
posted by wendell at 3:12 AM PST - 8 comments

Arnie wins in california

Arnie wins in california, a victory for Mr schwarzenegger. For a man whose acting ability was described as going all the way from A to B, lets hope for the sake of californians that he is somewhat more adept at politics.
posted by johnnyboy at 1:32 AM PST - 190 comments

Ghost Signs

"Before the invention of modern billboards, sign painters used to paint advertisements and company names directly onto building walls. These gradually fading painted signs are known as ghost signs."
posted by dobbs at 12:01 AM PST - 28 comments

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