When I was a kid, I loved watching Jacques Cousteau on National Geographic, I thought he was maybe the coolest guy that ever lived. So much so, that when people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up (a question which is still asked of me to this day) I would answer, “I want to be a marine biologist when I grow up”. I actually wanted to be an oceanographer, but I thought saying marine biologist sounded cooler.
Well, like many of my dreams, that occupation was never to show up on my resume, but I still get to watch and feed my fish in my 60 gallon aquarium, which has an Oscar
and a 16″ Plecostomus (algae eater) which, aside from the pain in the ass of cleaning it all the time affords me a great deal of pleasure.
Plecostomus (genus Pterygoplichthys)
So then I saw one of my favorite all-time movies: The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou and a little germ of an idea grew in my head until finally I created this mini documentary of my aquarium of terror starring Tony the Oscar, Bob the Plecostamus and the carnivorous, motionless stone octopus (who, through his understated performance, nearly steals the show). In honor of Jacques and Bill Murray, I used my best phony french accent during the narration, I hope you enjoy watching it as much as I did making it
1st off is new Radiohead (this could have been on Led Zeppelin’s Zoso AND/OR Jeff Buckley’s Grace and fit right in, at least to my ears…and that’s a very good thing.) And since I am always forgetting to provide an actual link to videos in my post, I humbly apologize to my RSS via email readers, and promise to not do it no more (no mo no mo):
And the 2nd video juxtaposes my well-known love of two things: Hockey and Rush. It’s Neil Pearts take of “The Hockey Theme”, the music that has been used during the opening of “Hockey Night in Canada” on Canadian TV for the last four decades:
Tom Baker was my favorite Dr. Who – and it’s funny, I’ve heard it said over and over by everyone I’ve ever talked to whenever I bring up the subject: “Tom was the definitive Dr. Who” or “Tom Baker was the only Dr. Who I ever watched”.
He was simply magic – it was the role he was born for.
Anyway, Tom is 76 today! Here’s wishing you many more future birthday candles on your cakes. Here are some cool pics of the great Dr. in all his scarfy glory:
This is very trippy, I remember seeing this at midnight on PBS with the classic music playing, it’s just great BTW the theme was created by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, and was considered quite innovative, and was a significant influence on modern electronic music.
And here is a graphic of the Tardis I made a couple of years ago with Photoshop:
I was working on the new flash header, and somehow came up with this silhouette when I magic tool selected and cut my image out – then I applied negative image effect and said to myself, “wow, that’s pretty cool”. I probably couldn’t duplicate this if someone stuck a gun to my head.
Probably the coolest, hippest cat to ever record rock music, the one and only Donald Fagen celebrates his 62nd trip around the sun today (and there is much rejoicing). Even better news for the hep cats hoping for a follow-up to the magnificent Morph the Cat, he will supposedly release another album sometime this year. Anytime Fagen releases anything I get excited, I mean how often can you buy music you haven’t even heard yet, and just know it’s gonna kick ass?
I guess most of my friends already know how much I love Syd Barrett (born Roger Keith Barrett – 6 January 1946 – 7 July 2006). He would have been 64 today, so I thought I’d write a little about him, and why I like him so much.
It’s not just his music, which is awesome, or his innocent whimsical lyrics (which became much darker after the onset of his mental illness), but it’s also the fact that he started one of the greatest bands of all time: Pink Floyd (and then they kicked him out of his own band WTF). Here’s a line drawing I made of Syd:
I think the thing that bothers me most about the whole Syd Barrett-acid casualty story is how everyone says, “oh yeah Syd blew his mind by taking too much acid” when possibly he was (unknown by him) being dosed with huge amounts of acid by 2 fuckers named Mad Jock and Mad Sue on a 2 month vacation (they deny this now, of course) – but there is no denying that when he came back from that vacation Dave Gilmour said he was “changed” and “didn’t seem to recognize me”.
It’s just a sad story, whatever the truth – but some of the music like Arnold Layne and See Emily Play will endure, it’s truly great and showcase his magnificent talent far better than his solo efforts (which nevertheless still show flashes of brilliance, but are an acquired taste to be sure).
First of all, do I think Gary McKinnon was wrong for doing what he did? Yes. But extradition is wrong for these reasons:
At the time of his offense, the maximum penalty he could have received in the UK was 6 months jail time, a far cry from the life term sought by U.S. prosecutors. He thought he was performing a public service (apparently he thought free energy cover-ups were allowing old people to freeze to death, and was trying to expose this), and was willing to risk 6 months for it – NOT his entire life
How in the hell did a self-admitted bumbling computer nerd autistic who was high on cannabis even hack into critical U.S. data systems?! If the U.S. security is so poor as to allow this, we are in big trouble. This type of security breach should not have been possible, and heads should roll at the pentagon for this to have even been allowed to happen.
He was trying to find evidence of UFOs, antigravity technology, and the suppression of “free energy”, all of which he claims to have proven through his actions. I would say he is a conspiracy “nut”, but considering his medical history a nut diagnosis or classification is actually probably just a manifestation of his condition.
These medical conditions consist of autistic spectrum disorders (Asperger’s Syndrome). He also suffers from depression and is suicidal over the thought of be forced to serve a life imprisonment in the U.S.
Anyway here is an interview with Gary and Chrissie Hind on ITN:
Among many of Gary’s supporters are David Gilmour, Sir Bob Geldoff and Chrissie Hind, who collaborated on this Graham Nash cover “Chicago – We Can Change The World” for the ‘Keep Gary Mckinnon Free‘ campaign:
UPDATE 2-2-2016 :
Curious about the final verdict, here is what i found on wikipedia:
McKinnon appealed to the European Court of Human Rights, which briefly imposed a bar on the extradition, but the request for an appeal was rejected.
On 23 January 2009, McKinnon won permission from the High Court to apply for a judicial review against his extradition. On 31 July 2009, the High Court announced that McKinnon had lost this appeal. McKinnon’s legal team, solicitor Karen Todner and barrister Ben Cooper, applied for a judicial review into the Home Secretary’s rejection of medical evidence, which stated that, when he could easily be tried in the UK, it was unnecessary, cruel and inhumane to inflict the further stress of removing him from his homeland, his family and his medical support network.
British government blocks extradition
On 16 October 2012, Home Secretary Theresa May announced to the House of Commons that the extradition had been blocked, saying that “Mr McKinnon’s extradition would give rise to such a high risk of him ending his life that a decision to extradite would be incompatible with Mr McKinnon’s human rights.” She stated that the Director of Public Prosecutions would determine whether McKinnon should face trial before a British court. On 14 December, the DPP, Keir Starmer, announced that McKinnon would not be prosecuted in the United Kingdom, because of the difficulties involved in bringing a case against him when the evidence was in the United States.
So yay, not all stories end badly, I’m glad prominent figures like Sting, Trudie Styler, Julie Christie, David Gilmour, Graham Nash, Peter Gabriel, The Proclaimers, Bob Geldof, Chrissie Hynde, David Cameron, Boris Johnson, Stephen Fry, and Terry Waite supported him, and I believe had a large influence on the final outcome. Good job guys
Jan 3 is an important day. John Paul Jones was born 1-3-1946, and besides being bassist el supremo for the mighty Led Zeppelin, his new band with Dave Grohl (Foos) and Josh Homme is indescribably good. They’re called Them Crooked Vultures, go check ’em out, all I can say is WOW. Here’s a pic of JPJ jammin with TCV (Wonker took the pic):
It’s also the birthday of J.R.R.Tolkien, so don’t be surprised to see someone raise a glass and toast, “The Professor”. I know I will.
Also at nine minutes after midnight (UT) tonight, January 2/3, the Earth will be at perihelion, when we are closest to the sun. Seems funny that it’s also our coldest time of year for us in the states, but that’s the way it works. Look at it this way: the precession of the equinoxes takes 22,000 years, so in 11,000 years perihelion will be in July – The people of Earth will have something to complain about THEN, let me tell you – the winters will be really cold and the summers just unbearable: