YouTube can be a great educational tool. Here’s what I’ve stumbled upon this evening.
Nerdwriter1 talks about internet art and how machines perceive differently than we do.
Vox teaches us how the Oscar’s voting process ends up awarding bland movies. Incidentally, they use the film The King’s Speech as an example. A film I found to be extremely dull and devoid of any creative joy. It was one sterile set-up after another. It was not a bad movie, it was the perfect bland movie, carefully tailored to follow all the rules and not offend anyone (especially from a visual stand point). Watching it probably felt like reading one of those books written by a machine in George Orwell’s 1984. I stopped considering the Oscars a good gauge for quality a long time ago, the Vox video made sense.
Continue reading What I am Watching This Evening… YouTube.
‘Tis the season to be jolly! And to share some Christmas lights photography!
Continue reading Christmas Lights Photography
It was the summer of ‘62, and Dick’s first time walking down Hollywood Boulevard. He had left San Francisco with a bitter taste in his mouth. ‘Too many beatniks’ he had told his live-in girlfriend one freezing summer evening. The next day he packed his bags and headed south for the resort town of Los Angeles. The bus ride was long and uncomfortable but when he stepped out of the Greyhound terminal into the LA summer air he felt like he had made the right choice.
Dick reached out to the few people he knew in town. He quickly learned the expression ‘Southern hospitality’ did not apply to Southern California. Fortunately, the Charles Dickens would have him. Truth be told, the Charles Dickens would have anyone brave enough to drag himself through the lobby doors. The room was small, making the bed very easy to find. He was exhausted, but the heat had other plans for him. The city came in through the open window loudly. For a moment he missed San Francisco, then he remembered the beatniks. His girlfriend, Rita, paid a visit to his mind next. She was probably sleeping through the cool night. He hated her. He hated her for being too selfish to quit her job, abandon her blind father, and follow him to the land of dreams. Most of all, he hated her because she was certainly sleeping with the window closed. He could never understand some people. The night came and went, hating this and that, and without major incidents. As the morning heat rose through the building, it became clear someone had committed suicide in the room next door. They did it quietly and respectfully, and if it wasn’t for the stench of rotting flesh the tortured soul might have gone unnoticed. The heat had no mercy for the living let alone the dead. But then again, for all he knew, the Charles Dickens always smelt that way. Escaping to the streets was the only sensible thing to do.
Continue reading Dick Goes to Hollywood
Selected quotes from Zen in the Art of Archery by Eugen Herrigel.
The story goes something like this: Eugen Herrigel, a German teaching and living in Japan, set out to understand the meaning of Zen. Realizing it cannot be studied but only experienced, he decided to learn about it through the practice of one of the arts “touched” by Zen, Kyudo (Japanese archery). Out of his experiences came the book Zen in the Art of Archery.
This was one of the first book I read on the subject. Given the choices made by Herrigel later in life, it is unclear what he took away from these experiences.
As I understand it, talking about Zen has a tendency to confuse things. What makes this a worthwhile read is not the author’s interpretation of what Zen actually is (or is not) but rather the fact that it is one of the earliest books to expose the Western public to Zen. It spawned a century of speculation and countless books on the subject.
Continue reading Quotes From Zen in the Art of Archery
After reading Friedrich Nietzsche’s Thus Spoke Zarathustra years ago, I felt that Nietzsche had been greatly misunderstood by some . In a few cases, the concept of the Übermensch or Super-human (Overhuman, Superman etc.) has been misappropriated to justify wickedness.
Recently I stumbled upon a video that provides a very simple interpretation of this idea.
Continue reading Nietzsche’s Super-Human Explained
Sooner or later everyone misses the rain. It just happens. You wake up one day alone in a strange town you’ve been living in for the past twenty years and are certain you don’t belong. The problem with the sun is that it makes it difficult to hide from others and yourself. I checked to see if the bag was still under the bed. It was. It wasn’t a dream. I pulled it out and stared at all that cash. It represented the dreams and aspirations of decent people I no longer cared for.
Clear skies. Waiting for darkness was not an option. I threw a few things on top of the money and headed out of town. Once the parking meters were no longer lining the sidewalk I knew I’d be in the clear, at least for a few hours. Rural America came up on me quick. I felt remorse for the smiles I had shared with the good people of the Clarkson Farmers Savings & Loans. It was only a matter of time before they would discover their colleague was a crook.
Continue reading Clear Skies
I took my first steps in the world of screenwriting back in 2001 using Movie Magic Screenwriter 2000. Later I switched to Final Draft and remained a happy camper until 2013…
Enter the amazing Google Chromebook!
It didn’t take me long after getting my Chromebook from Amazon for around $300 to fall in love with it. In many ways, it felt like it represented the future of computing. A world where everything is in the clouds and hardware is only used to interpret information.
Continue reading Amazon Storywriter: Free Cloud-based Screenplay Writing “Software”
The food, the people, the places, there is a lot to love about Japan and during our recent trip we experienced as much of it as we could.
Continue reading Around Japan
The Zen ‘everyday mind’ described as ‘sleeping when tired, eating when hungry’, or, in other words, knowing what one’s real needs are. Like a bamboo leaf, it bends lower and lower under the weight of the snow. Suddenly the snow slips to the ground without the leaf having stirred. The distinction between action and result disappears. The hands and feet are the brushes and the whole universe is the canvas on which the Zen mind depicts his life. The constant present moment.
(Extrapolated and rearranged from the works of Eugen Herrigel, Michael J. Gelb and Ryōkan Taigu.)
Purchase the book Zen in the Art of Archery by clicking here.
Purchase the book Body Learning by clicking here.
I took this photo while in Italy in June of 2015. It was shot on an iPhone 6. Believe it or not, it has not been digitally manipulated. These are the original colors of the iPhone camera. Impressive! The tallest peak in the distance is Monte Rosa (Mont Rose).