i hate this part…

you know, when you can’t think of anything to write about? i need some sort of note-taking thing that’s wired into my brain (c’mon DARPA, help me out here – i know you’re working on it) so i can “take notes” without having to take notes. clear?

it seems when just wandering (well, stumbling bemusedly) through my day, i have all these little random thoughts that seem really interesting at the time. i carry a notebook, but often these ideas hit me when it’s not accessible. or when it would be inappropriate to pull out and start scribbling. or dangerous; the morning commute comes to mind.

so, all my great internal flowerings of wit bloom and die, unseen by the outside world (that means y’all). you don’t know what you’re missing. and, honestly, neither do i. if i could remember them, i’d write them down.

so, some random space fillers, in no particular order:

1. the HCBC is gearing up for the new decade. we’ve got a work space, and plan to have regular hours for folks to come by and work on their bikes with our tools “real soon now.” we’re also going to move our workshops into the space, making them a “rain or shine” event for the future. keep an eye out for an open invitation to an upcoming open house.

2. i really wish they didn’t have the SPCA bring dogs on the radio that need adoption. not because i wish ill for the dogs or the SPCA, but because it makes me sad. and it’s hard to drive to work or class if i’m bummed out. i don’t have the room or the funds to adopt a dog right now (and let’s not dwell on my antipathy towards cats), but every time i hear about these critters on the radio i want to bring them home. so you have to do it for me.

3. did we really need a remake of Clash of the Titans? i mean, the greatest attraction of the original are the Harryhausen special effects. well, and Ursula Andress. but i digress. the new film will be all seamless CGI, like Avatar and the Star Wars prequels. it seems to me (though this may be my not-well-hidden inner curmudgeon creeping out) that back when the effects guys were actually trying to create a realistic effect in the corporeal world, it gave us a better experience than the “throw tons of cpu cycles at it” approach. i know that the spaceships in the prequels look “cooler” (or, at least, smother) than those in the original trilogy, but they are less “real” because of it. if you’re going to make a film about big blue people, put some dudes in rubber suits.

4. the new Jaguar XJ is hot. i got to check it out up close, in detail at Baker Motor Company‘s launch event (now i just need a test drive). it’s got a very Citroën-inspired feel to the rear quarters. i like it a lot. but why are we only getting the V8 cars? i want the diesel! it’s only half a second slower to 60 mph than the non-supercharged V8 car (6 seconds versus 5.4), and gets 40 mpg combined. combined! did i mention significantly lower (than the petrol) CO2 emissions, with the same top speed (155 mph, in Europe)? and it runs around $11 thousand less for similar trim levels.

5. i’m beginning to loathe the term “graphic novel.” i really enjoy comic books. but not every comic book is a graphic novel. so stop calling them all that. Maus is a graphic novel. Pride of Baghdad is a graphic novel. Watchmen, V for Vendetta – graphic novels. some random storyline, contiguous in nature, collected in a single volume? Excalibur Classic, Vol. 1? not a graphic novel (good comic, though). just because it’s been collected and has a convenient unifying label hung on it doesn’t mean it’s a graphic novel. comic books are ongoing or single issue pamphlet-format works that tell a story without a preordained resolution. one could, perhaps, make the case for some one-shots as “graphic short stories,” but even most of them are beholden to external continuity. a graphic novel, on the other hand, is a story told through the same visual forms as the comic book (whether initially serialized or not) that has a beginning, middle and end. it is a contained story where the author is trying to either tell that story or expand on a larger theme. Maus, for example, tells the story of one man’s life during the Holocaust. it, therefore, is a contained story. Art Spiegelman is using the form of the comic to tell that story and make his points – he could have used other forms to do the same thing. Claremont and Davis really couldn’t have chosen another format for Excalibur, and there’s no resolution. the title ran on another 120 issues or so, through multiple creative teams, until it finally petered out. that’s not a novel, and neither are the smaller chunks – whatever titles you want to hang on them.

whew!

for not having anything to write about, i managed to burp out quite a bit. if you made it this far, i hope you enjoyed today’s maunderings. cheers!

quote of the day:

“Life and love are life and love, a bunch of violets is a bunch of violets, and to drag in the idea of a point is to ruin everything. Live and let live, love and let love, flower and fade, and follow the natural curve, which flows on, pointless.” – D.H. Lawrence

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