Friday, March 27, 2009

"When you're done talking, stop"

Fallows is worth reading.

I have been in sales a number of different times in my career. Silence is an especially valuable tool when selling , for pretty much the same reason.

Clients are uncomfortable with the quiet and want to fill the air. We always said, "Whoever talks first loses" but it isn't quite as simple as that. People will tell you things (if you just shut up!) when given the chance. Silence is the best way to handle it.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Comics Are Essential

Grant Morrison. Frank Quitely. Batman and Robin #1.


Grant Morrison: 'Batman and Robin', which opens with the 3-part 'Batman Reborn' arc, is maybe more poppy, and more colourful, but it's also creepier. It's like David Lynch doing the Batman TV show.

(on Quitely's art) And he’s producing things like sound effects, because nobody does sound effects anymore. Everybody has given up on them, so what we’ve done is incorporate them into the artwork. When someone hits water, the water rises up and makes the “splash” effect. It just looks fantastic.

Read more here.
And here.

The common thread between this and The Brave and The Bold is an embrace of the character's whole history, including the Adam West incarnation.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Going to do 2 versions of the "Math Will Tear Us Apart" tshirt. That's the MIT version, the liberal arts version will be the "Math Anxiety Will Tear Us Apart" tshirt.

Shirt will be available by special order only to keep costs low. Prototypes will be created and then some kind of preordering mechanism wil be established, with shipping date announced. 

Other designs may appear as well. 

Monday, March 23, 2009

I am so FUCKED. My work for Terroir has accidentally been nominated for Outstanding Restaurant Graphics by the Beard House. 

Definitely gonna use the awards night to pimp our tshirts. I have a Howard Johnsons colored blue text on orange "Terroir T Shirts Still Only $19" that I am gonna wear with a pink tuxedo. 

So, so weird. 

Thursday, March 19, 2009

When Do My Tweets Eat My Blog?

Worse than a new format eating my blog bit by bit, it's a different persona in some respects.

Perhaps having a clearly defined identity (secret ID, if you will) is part of it. The 140 character limit and the built in social networking are sticky aspects as well. Hmmm.

Perhaps a guilty pleasure is that I like clearly defined (cartoony even) avatars. Stan Lee is not exactly Stanley Lieber, nor Joey Ramone, Jeffery Hyman. From this place in history, Philip Guston just seems like a joke name and Goldstein seems to be the painter whose forms and contradictions I love. "Guston" is almost a Jewish joke, and the salami on rye quality of his late work's multiple ironies partly turn on that moniker.

The name Kirby, on the other hand, is sharp like a pickle. Maybe the level of assimilation that Jack Kirby was headed for was so modest -- and so transparent -- that it doesn't rankle as in authentic.

Digressions aside... ah, what is there besides digression and regression anyway?
Productivity porn just seems to stem partly from urgent failure, but also from a lack of self acceptance. You get all dressed up in a shiny font and the next thing you know you can't tolerate the squalor that your soul effortlessly exudes.

Look Ma! A shiny To Do list!

That's all for now. Looks like I'm gonna Tweet, Blog, Tumble, Fumble, Grumble.


Saturday, March 14, 2009

First World Problem: 

Shuffle 3.0 is the one that makes me glad I stayed with MP3 over AAC. I love my gen 1 & 2 Shuffles, but if they both crapped out, this is where Sony & Samsung get a chance. Remote on a proprietary headphone? Ugh. 

One thing that has been satisfying about the Shuffles so far is that they had physical buttons that click, like iPod 1st gen. Sweaty exercise fingers like this. 

Friday, March 13, 2009

Math Anxiety Will Tear Us Apart

So, I have been doing tshirts for Terroir for a year now. (As part of my participation in this wine project/bar/batcave.) Here is a shirt I made as a gift or part of a conversation, which points the way. How much intersects with these kinds of things interests me, as I intended that series to be a limited, utterly indulgent experiment, pure R & D.

(The next one will read "Math Anxiety Will Tear Us Apart".)

New Museum: "OOOH it's so sterile!" (Lisa Simpson)

This was a glossy version of a show that could have been held at
Storefront for Architecture. How meta is an exhibit about a magazine about cities in a building which is its own statement on sleek postmodernism in the still gritty Bowery?


New Museum in general is glossy and sleek in an OK way. I would like to
move in there and install some skateboard ramps and my comic collection.

Barring that, they have some good politically oriented stuff and some perfume ad shite video art.

Monday, March 09, 2009

One More Watchmen Movie Post. Hrrm.

Or: Why Tom Spurgeon is a better writer than I am. His Watchmen review is the best one I have read. Unlike mainstream critics, he is actually informed enough to make a judgement on the thing.

My guess is that Watchmen's makers wanted to stay faithful to the work because they believed in it. My further guess is that they never came to an understanding of that work beyond a very facile take on some of its appealing surface aspects and genre correction elements. In that way, they're a lot like many of the book's fans. The result is a movie that while it's mostly faithful to its source material, the moments it's not faithful jar to a noteworthy degree, and the newly synthesized take of old and new elements never takes on a life of its own.

Read it all.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Let's Get That Lousy Adaptation Taste Out Of Our Mouths Part 3

The Watchmen Saturday Morning Cartoon! Far, far better than that crappy movie, it's the sprightly mint tea to treat Lousy Comic Book Adaptation. Again, embedding would be better, but here's a link:

Let's Get That Lousy Adaptation Taste Out Of Our Mouths Part 2

The Brave and The Bold gets better and better. Artisanal granita for sophisticated fanboy palates whose tastebuds have been sullied by pathetic "graphic novel" adaptations.

I would have done an embedded video, but the geniuses at Cartoon Network layered so much extra cheese and pepperoni into their embed code the link is preferable.

As Der Spieg said, "if graphic is respectable and novel is respectable, what could be more respectable than GRAPHIC NOVEL?" Bring on the comics. Please.

BTW, Jackie Earle Haley, I respect the shit out of you, it's not your fault. As the interviews with you suggested, you really got Rorschach in all of his Ditko-ey glory. Alas. Hrrm.

Let's Get That Lousy Adaptation Taste Out Of Our Mouths Part 1

As the WSJ reviewer (of all places) correctly noted, The Incredibles nicked enough from Watchmen (the paunch, the Keene Act) to cover our fanboy needs. Plus it was made with style and taste. And fun.

Newsflash: The Watchmen Movie Sucks Ass Bigtime

Holy Sacrilege Batman! What a turgid turd. The guys who play Rorschach & The Comedian do the best they can, but it's an almost unwatchable fuckup.

The best comparison I can think of is the bogus movie they make of Pee Wee's Big Adventure with James Brolin as "P.W" in that great film. They make a movie about the literal plot of the comic, but completely miss the structural elements and tone. And the point, oh yeah, they miss the point--the superheroics are not dry and almost quiet as in the original comic, but nutty wirework, f/x etc. etc. Whatever. Joel Schumaker looks like fucking Jean Luc Godard and Tim Burton like Fassbinder next to this steaming pile of mediocrity.

The plot points about the squid are not a big deal, interestingly. But Nixon with a ginormous Pinocchio nose talking about it? Oh man.

True to form, I rushed out to see it at the earliest possible moment. What the hell, Iron Man and Hellboy were fun, weren't they?

Get that crummy movie taste out of your mouth with this Saturday Morning Cartoon version.

Alan Moore gets the last word (from the interview in Wired which I linked to previously as well)

"My books are still the same books as they were before they were made into films. The books haven't changed. I'm reminded of the remark by, I think it was Raymond Chandler, where he was asked about what he felt about having his books "ruined" by Hollywood. And he led the questioner into his study and showed him all the books there on the bookshelf, and said, Look—there they all are. They're all fine. They're fine. They're not ruined. They're still there. And I think that's pretty much the attitude I take. If the books are as good as I think they are, then they are the things that will endure. And if the films are as bad as I think they are, then they are the things that will not endure. So, I suppose we'll see at the end of the day, whenever that is."