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05/31/06 08:44 - 84ºF - ID#37332

all is quiet once again

So (e:dragonlady7) 's parents left for home this morning, leaving a number of unfinished projects finished and unstarted projects started. I wish that we had Hung Out more and Made Them Work less, but ... that is how things go sometimes. It is a shame that my scooter's tire is still flat [hm, it doesn't look like I posted about the Saga. Regardless- the flat tire is still thus] because Mr. (e:dragonlady7) is both a gearhead and a funny old man who would have a blast tearing up the neighborhood with it. Oh well, he'll have to come back later in the summer. He did manage to have a chat with a Ms. Lavell, who rides the same model scooter as I [though in a more tasteful minty green], and who as far as I know constitutes the entirety of the Buffalo chapter of Scooter Queers Riding Everywhere and More. I guess they [she?] are having a Pride Ride this weekend.

The paper this week is an enormous 96 pages, as it is our Summer Guide. In retrospect, this was a terrible issue for me to decide to expand our multimedia offerings . Certain unnamed (e:peeps) may be pleased to know that our music editor considers Gnarls Barkley's St. Elsewhere to be 'the first must-have album to pump on the car stereo this summer,' and I have come to agree. My column is on autopilot this week, having been submitted by an anonymous former staffer.

Now that all is once again quiet at 40 Hartford, it is time to ...change ...journal music? Yes!

This is Gator Tango from the Wild Things soundtrack, composed and performed by George S Clinton, who is joined by guitarist Greg Camp of Smash Mouth, and bassist Mark Sandman and saxophonist Dana Colley of Morphine. gather:0770627001149120625

- Z
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Permalink: all_is_quiet_once_again.html
Words: 326
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: hate mail

05/28/06 12:28 - 77ºF - ID#37331


Last night I was talking to some people about the kinds of anarchists, lunatics, and terrorists who perennially leave us messages in our mailbag, email inboxes, and voice mail systems. Eventually we decided that, while we don't have the room to print them, we could at least put the more entertaining voice mails on our website. Thus:

What's happening, man? My name is MC Moses, and I was calling in response to the article in the Artvoice, and what I was wondering is why on earth would you people put an article about some poseur by the name of MC Sick? That motherfucker be acting like he's from the Bronx, and he be from Long Island. I don't know if you motherfuckers have a clue, but there's a major difference between being from Long Island and being from the Bronx, you know what I'm saying? I mean, I'm from Brooklyn, and I've got all these DJs that throw down fat beats, and I didn't see or hear anything about my name in that article, and I'm pissed off, so you better call my DJ back [phone number omitted]. You better call him back and straighten this out, because there ain't no way you guys are going to print an article about Buffalo hip-hop and not include my motherfucking name, know what I'm saying? Because I get down, I get funky, and I get motherfucking live, alright? So you motherfuckers need to recognize that what I do is motherfucking cut, alright? So call my motherfucking DJ back, because I'm pissed off and we need to straighten this shit out, you know what I'm saying?

'Letters,' v5n17 in response to 'This Is Buffalo Hip-Hop,' v5n16 .

I see Bruce Jackson is writing the same things, over and over and over now, and week after week. And of course, a nice little touch: bring back the Peace Bridge. He's like a two-issue person. If you could pass that along to Doctor, Mister, whatever, Shithole Jackson, tell him to kill himself, because he's clearly no use in this world. And, you know, your paper is shit. It's not even worth being free. You're not the Beast. The Beast is amusing. Yours is annoying. The Buffalo Current made me wince, and thankfully that died. Maybe your paper will die. Maybe you will all kill yourselves. The Buffalo News is not much better. I'd be willing to raise money to send him back to Guatemala. I'll sell t-shirts, pass that along to him. Nick Beat- was that his name at UB? Yeah, Nick Beat. OK, your paper is shit. It's absolute shit. You just run every issue into the ground. Oh, and by the way, the Elmwood Avenue hotel- why don't you point out that you have lots at stake in it? That's why you're in favor. Otherwise, you're opposed to everything, development... I hope somebody builds a Walgreen's right on top of your heads, and smothers you and kills you. A big old Walgreen's. And a Rite-Aid, and a Wal-Mart, and an airport, and kills you because you're useless. Your paper is shit. You sell casinos advertising, yet you rail against it. How about Ralph Wilson? Those are OK. I think all the money for the Bills goes to Michigan, Detroit, doesn't it? Sabres money goes to Rochester, to Golisano. And the Bisons? I think the Riches hang out in Florida. That don't matter, does it? Because you're pretty much whores. You sell out to the highest-- 'End of messages.'

'Letters,' v5n19 in response, perhaps, to 'Sweet Nothings: When "Dead Deals" Are Better Than "Done Deals,' v5n10 , part of Bruce Jackson's interminable Casino Chronicles series.

- Z
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Permalink: crazies.html
Words: 657
Location: Buffalo, NY

05/28/06 09:05 - 63ºF - ID#37330

feels like

somebody puked on my pillow and called it my head. Nice meeting all y'alls and hanging out.

Usually when I go to a party of people I haven't met I just kind of hang out in the corner and quietly eat all the nachoes. But since I've been following all of your lives, loves, and recipes online for the last couple months, I felt it much easier to talk to people.

- Z
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Permalink: feels_like.html
Words: 73
Location: Buffalo, NY

05/27/06 10:11 - 65ºF - ID#37329


hey guess what guys i'm at (e:paul) 's house and he's having a party.


- Z

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Permalink: yo.html
Words: 19
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: javascript

05/26/06 06:19 - 65ºF - ID#37328

call me

This post is extremely nerdy, so for those of you who don't care about Javascript's object model, have a good weekend, you may skip the rest of the post.

OK, so now that I'm talking to the nerds, here's some neat Javascript voodoo. I really like monkeying around with runtimes, and one reason that I like Python so much is that it lets you do all kinds of perverse things to the runtime with some very elegant effects. One thing it lets you do is define "callable" objects - objects that you can call like any plain old function. Classes, eg, are callable; this invokes the constructor and returns a new instance of the class. This maintains a similar syntax to other languages, except it's cleaner:

myInstance = MyClass() # python
var myInstance = new MyClass(); // Javascript
MyClass* myInstance = new MyClass(); // C++
MyClass* myInstance = [[[MyClass alloc] init] autorelease]; // Objective-C

This also makes for very elegant RPC calls. You can, eg, create a callable instance that you can use like a regular function, but takes care of all the grotty marshalling and connection management behind the scenes. Once you set it up, you can use the instance like any other function:

import xmlrpclib
server = xmlrpclib.ServerProxy('')
print server.currentTime.getCurrentTime()

I'm writing a Javascript XML-RPC client library for work and I really wanted to be able to do something that elegant, like:

getCurrentTime = XMLRPCMethod('', 'currentTime.getCurrentTime');

But in Javascript, you can only call things that are actual functions. However, since functions are first-class objects, you can bind your own attributes to them like any other object. You can access them from inside the body of the function by using the special variable arguments.callee:

function Greeter(yourName) {
    var result = function(timeOfDay) {
        alert('Good ' + timeOfDay + ', ' + arguments.callee.yourName);

    result.yourName = yourName;
    return result;

greetZ = Greeter('Zobar');
greetP = Greeter('Paul');

greetZ('afternoon'); // 'Good afternoon, Zobar'
greetZ('evening'); // 'Good evening, Zobar'
greetP('evening'); // 'Good evening, Paul'

When I figured this out it blew my mind, and while I doubt its day-to-day practicality, I thought it's a handy tool for Javascripters to have. I also plan to make the XML-RPC library public, once I clean it up a bit, test it in MSIE, and finish the documentation.

- Z
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Permalink: call_me.html
Words: 391
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: computer

05/25/06 07:56 - 56ºF - ID#37327

i throw it a scrap and it hums

My computer and me are both brief in this world, both foolish, and we have earthly fates.

Yes, it's dorky to eulogize a computer, but I am a computer geek and one tends to get attached to these things . So please, a brief moment of silence for my old computer, which has served me honorably and well deserves its retirement.


ENOUGH! Now, we drink! We feast! We spit on the face of death for another day! BAH!

Here's my first and second impressions of the new MacBook:

The MacBook and MacBook Pro are much closer to each other than the iBook and PowerBook ever were . Both come standard with a built-in iSight camera that can be used for taking dorky pictures of yourself; both have AirPort Extreme and Bluetooth standard, and at 6 hours, the MacBook has better battery life and lower power consumption than the MacBook Pro. In fact, almost everything in the MacBook can be upgraded to bring it in line with the MacBook Pro. <geeky>The MacBook has an integrated video card which, I guess, is bad if you're playing 3D action games. Since the video card mooches off main memory I would recommend a RAM upgrade, but other than that I wouldn't sweat it. The MacBook also lacks a PCMCIA port, but I never used mine on my old computer.</geeky>

The black MacBook costs $150 more than an equally-outfitted white MacBook. I admit it, I paid the Vanity Tax. Much like the Stella , it's less about how fast it is than about how you look when you're pushing it home. Although you can't tell from the pictures , it is finished in a matte black plastic that looks like a post-WallStreet, pre-TiBook prototype, and is very classy in an understated, Little Black Dress kind of way.

The monitor is the perfect size; there are as many pixels as I am used to [1280x800] but they are made to fit on a 13.3" monitor rather than the 15" of my previous laptop. I think this is the ideal size- large enough to use, but small enough to carry around. Much has been made of the glossy, high-saturation [and presumably high-glare] screen coating, as opposed to the traditional matte, low-glare [and presumably low-saturation] screen coating. The colors are, indeed, very deep and saturated. As for the glare, I have not had a problem yet. Yesterday morning, (e:dragonlady7) was using it in a sunny window and, with the brightness turned all the way up, could still read it.

Apple finally put in a widescreen trackpad to go along with the widescreen monitor. They may have gone a little overboard, though, 'cause this thing is enormous. It still only has one button, because Apple are stubborn fucks, but it compares favorably even to the five-button + nub + trackpad that we have on the ThinkPad at work . The new trackpads accept two-fingered input, so a two-fingered tap is like the right button, and a two-fingered drag is like a two-dimensional scrollwheel. If you're used to tapping, this feels very organic and works really well.

I gotta go get ready for work now - more updates as they become available!

- Z
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Permalink: i_throw_it_a_scrap_and_it_hums.html
Words: 571
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: computer

05/23/06 10:34 - 51ºF - ID#37326


So my computer's been pretty good to me, but lately just weird little crappy things have been going wrong with it. The CD/DVD drive, I think, was a lemon that kind of worked when I first got it, but lately doesn't do jack. Batteries, of course, get old and eventually can't keep a charge. The Airport [11Mbps] card started acting funny and now doesn't really work at all.

So today, I sucked it up and bought a new black 13" MacBook . I haven't even finished installing the updates on it but let me tell you this shit is hot. Now I just gotta get moved in.

- Z
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Permalink: w00_.html
Words: 115
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: marketing

05/20/06 10:46 - 50ºF - ID#37325

idiocy or genius

OK, so a socially-conscious hip hop act [The Black Eyed Peas ] goes on tour, underwritten by a major Japanese auto manufacturer [Honda ]. Of course they need an over-the-top promotion.

Since they are a hip-hop act, it would seem to follow that they should give away a custom Civic. But since they're socially-conscious, it would seem to follow that they should give away one of Honda's alternative-fuel vehicles. And thus was begat the Black Eyed Peas Riced Out Honda Civic Hybrid Tour

(e:dragonlady7) imagines a discussion in Marketing where one manager says, 'why don't we give away a custom Civic?' and another manager says, 'make that a Civic Hybrid' and the other manager says, 'done,' and all the underlings groan and make fun of them at the water cooler for having no idea.

I guess I have more faith in the human condition than that. I imagine the ad exec coming in and saying, 'Dude. We gotta give away a riced-out Civic Hybrid. How awesome would that be?' and the manager goes, 'no that's ridiculous,' and the ad exec spells it out real slow, like 'Dude. Riced - out - Civic - Hybrid,' and the manager goes 'yeah, ok, that would be pretty sweet.'

- Z

[New journal music: The Skatalites/James Bond Theme gather:0481374001148138769 ]
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Permalink: idiocy_or_genius.html
Words: 242
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: news

05/18/06 04:02 - 53ºF - ID#37324

mystery of el greco christ revealed

I picked up a copy of 'Kepa 3 Gallery News,' v1n1 at lunch today. Very amusing. It is a one-page, front-and-back, 11"x17" xeroxed paper, written and illustrated entirely in laundry marker. I liked the following two articles, which were necessarily short due to the medium:

Mystery of El Greco Christ Revealed

Prado, Madrid- Officials find "trimmed" portion from middle section confirms tighty whitey prototype theory.

Casino to promote fine art using Vegas style. Is it possible to believe that big dollars will finally promote local fine art!? Past mayor Tony said Friday that this and pulled pork are win wins for our city.

It gave me an interesting idea for a concept newspaper: find a dozen interesting people and give them each a page. Content, photos, graphics, design are entirely their responsibility. Use InDesign, Word, paste-up, typewriter, marker, MS Paint, whatever. Collect and publish regularly.

- Z
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Permalink: mystery_of_el_greco_christ_revealed.html
Words: 153
Location: Buffalo, NY

Category: defiance

05/17/06 08:13 - 56ºF - ID#37323

best ugly local website award

(e:kara) made an excellent point in my last journal (e:zobar,53) that nobody gives a good God damn what a website looks like as long as it delivers the goods . I couldn't agree more.

So in that spirit, I thrust both middle fingers skyward and wave them defiantly in the direction of the art department and propose: The Best Ugly Local Website Award. Substitute 'utilitarian' if you must, but you know exactly what I'm talking about. It's that one website that was designed in Netscape Navigator Gold 3.04 about ten years ago that lives in some god-forsaken frameset at that you still visit all the time because it's the best damn website around. So let's fire up Lynx and get this party started!

At the risk of creating enemies, I nominate Bill Rapaport's ***** INTERACTIVE ***** BUFFALO RESTAURANT GUIDE , which has existed in one form or another since 1988. This guy is a motherfucking machine. Dude's got more restaurants listed than I have any hope of ever going to, and he does it all in HTML3.2. No Quicktime, Flash, AJAX, Javascript, or even CSS, just a huge wealth of information - the World Wide Web as pure as Tim intended *.

So let's hear it! What ugly websites are in your bookmarks?

- Z

  • 'Storage of ASCII text, and display on 24x80 screens, is in the short term sufficient, and essential. Addition of graphics would be an optional extra with very much less penetration for the moment.'

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Permalink: best_ugly_local_website_award.html
Words: 273
Location: Buffalo, NY



New Site Wide Comments

paul said to tinypliny
I miss you too!...

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Oh I see the sheep are there too. Is this the entirety of your flock? :D...

tinypliny said to paul
Haha, I remember when Basra used to love these. :)...

tinypliny said to paul
How many of these dolls have you hoarded? More importantly, where do they live and what happened to ...