Words spoken, echoes heard

  • “We’re always attracted to the edges of what we are, out by the edges where it’s a little raw and nervy.”
    —EL Doctorow (source)

  • Codex Seraphinianus. In the late 70s, Italian architect, illustrator and industrial designer Luigi Serafini made an encyclopaedia of unknown, parallel world. The 360–380 page opus is written in an unknown language, using an unknown alphabet.

  • Gel Videos: Ted Dewan. "Cars drove dangerously fast on Ted's residential street in Oxford, England -- until he began installing activist art on the street. It brought the community together (even the mayor got on board), slowed the traffic, and improved the experience for everyone involved."

The forgotten tunnel under Brooklyn

A Diamond Below: “Unbeknownst to the thousands of people who walk and drive along the busy streets of downtown Brooklyn every day, they are treading on a 170 year old secret. At 17 feet high, 21 feet wide and 1,611 feet long, it is a big secret indeed, and one filled with greed, murder and corruption.”

Yet another place to visit! Via Kuutio.


Peculiarly Auxiliary Wisdom

Never being
a big reader

of Jorn’s Robot Wisdom

(yet knowing who he is
and respecting his work)

I find myself
peculiarly fascinated by

his Auxiliary Wisdom.

So away

and visit

his excessories


Commodore’s unsung history

The Spectacular Rise and Fall of Commodore is a fascinating read. Well, the first sample chapter is (pdf version also available). There’s also excerpts of chapters 12 and 19.

Via Retromania.


Paul Ford writes novel

And what a backstory there is to it: Paul Ford started writing a column under a fake persona, and scored a book deal. I’m buying the book today. I have not kept up with the author of a long-time favorite Website of mine.


Project Aardvark

I’ve enjoyed reading the Project Aardvark weblog. Fogcreek’s idea is great: four interns create a working, saleable software product in the course of one summer. Last Friday, they finally revealed their product.


  • There’s something mesmerizing about this. He sure loves SNL and celebrities.

Robert Evans meets Andrew Blake

Robert Evans, the subject of the most stupefying bio I’ve ever read, meets the “Helmut Newton of porn,” Andrew Blake. A great read. Very Thompsonesque.


Jordan: New Spring

I can’t believe I’m admitting to reading Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series. Let alone reading New Spring, a friggin’ prequel to the ten novels already published.

Well, my name is Ilya, and I’m a fantasy reader.

There, I’ve said it. Yes, I’m a fantasy reader, though I hope my reading list shows that I don’t read fantasy exclusively. In fact, about a year and a half ago, I found that I couldn’t stomach most fantasy novels. Ever since, I’ve half-joked that “real literature” has ruined me for fantasy.

But back to Jordan. New Spring felt nicely familiar, like visiting Grandma’s. I can’t help it: I liked it.

I am a little miffed, though, that Jordan is writing prequels instead finishing off the Wheel of Time series. I’d like to finish that and be over with it.

There is only one fantasy series that I’d ever recommend non-fantasy junkies to read: George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire (the fourth book is still under progress).


Vonnegut: The Sirens of Titan

Unlike most Vonnegut novels, I actually had a hard time getting into The Sirens of Titan. Maybe it was because it is one of his early works, maybe because it was a British edition, which was set in a horrible Bodoni-style font.

I managed to finish The Sirens (no feat at all, of course, I always finish the books I start), and it was okay. Not as good as Galapagos (a low book of Vonnegut’s — despite the deeply resonant ideas it revolved around), but better than Vonnegut’s early short stories collected in Welcome to the Monkey House.


Joey Comeau’s debut novel to go for $1400

Joey Comeau is raising money for his tuition by serializing his unfinished novel online. The first chapter of Lockpick Pornography is up and waiting to impress you. Comeau writes disturbing and hilarious job applications at Overqualified and creates the webcomic A Softer World together with Emily Horne.


Overview of Intelligent Systems

Yesterday’s Presenting Computer Science lecture was on intelligent systems, given by Petri Myllymäki. Professor Myllymäki would be a great person to interview, many things he said would make good soundbytes. That’s probably why this is the first lecture I’ve gotten around to noting here.

My favorite quote: “We want to do to Google what Linux did to Microsoft.” Read more


Revolution Betrayed

While there’s little chance I’ll ever read it, Leon Trotsky’s Revolution Betrayed in available online.


Homage to Catalonia

The full text of Orwell’s Homage to Catalonia is available online.


Po Bronson: Bombardiers

The only book I’d read by Po Bronson was The First 20 Million Is Always the Hardest, and I wasn’t impressed. But when I found Bombardiers on the shelf in the Kallio library, I grabbed it, took it home, and read it. And wasn’t disappointed. I am, however, baffled by how good Bombardiers is, and how bad The First 20 Million is. Read more


Loneliness as never before

“Man in the 19th Century began to feel a loneliness such as he’d never felt before, as least as I read history. He’s been feeling it for a century now and he’s getting more and more lonely, more and more atomized. He’s being blown to smithereens. He’s in a world where he has no bearings. He’s on his own as he’s never been before, because in the past he had tradition and convention. There’s nothing on the horizon today: no great leaders, no Moses who might lead us out of the wilderness. Now it is up to man to save himself. He can’t look to anyone for help. That’s the desperate and the hopeful quality about this modern age. Man has to recognize himself as something more than a human being or he’ll perish.”

—Henry Miller, My Life and Times, 1972


If you hate men, be sure to be creative about it

From the SCUM Manifesto:

“Eaten up with guilt, shame, fears and insecurities and obtaining, if he's lucky, a barely perceptible physical feeling, the male is, nonetheless, obsessed with screwing; he'll swim through a river of snot, wade nostril-deep through a mile of vomit, if he thinks there'll be a friendly pussy awaiting him. ...”


Dan again

Dan Fante, while not being much to look at, is a plenty interesting writer. See Approach December, poem of his. There’s another one in the sidebar of Lummox Journal’s interview. Hollywood Investigator has a two-part interview. 3am has another one. Notice how much mellower Fante seems in the Lummox Journal interview. Maybe the interview was done via email?


  • From the June 23rd entry: “Heartbreak is the worst kind of flu, with repeated kicks in your stomach.”

Be still for long

Unable to settle, it feels good to have something different on the horizon.

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Beared souls

caught together