Archive for the 'video' Category

Just because it’s awesome – Citizen Cope

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

I’ve been slightly obsessed with Citizen Cope (Clarence Greenwood) lately. I’ve really liked the few songs I’ve had of his and earlier in the week I bought several albums. Today I bought another. Gorgeous stuff – layered, slow, a beat which makes my head and shoulders move and what a voice!

Citizen Cope – A Father’s Son

Look look what you’ve done
Not to become your Father’s Son
Before that day, day, day is done
You’ll get your day, day, day in the sun


Citizen Cope – Off The Ground

When you and I
Were so far
We were so far
Away from here
All my life been gambling times
Been evading mines
Away from here

“You will be comforted by just how much anonymous goodness there really is in the world”

Wednesday, January 12th, 2011

Jon Stewart, though ostensibly a comedian, is, I think, one of the most thoughtful and important voices we have on current politics and the media. He recently spoke about the terrible shooting in Arizona and his words are both moving and wise:

… to see good people like this hurt. It is so grievous and it causes me such sadness. But again, I refuse to give in to that feeling of despair. There is light in this situation. I urge everyone – read up about those that were hurt and or killed. You will be comforted by just how much anonymous goodness there really is in the world.

You read about these people and realize that people you don’t even know, that you have never met, are leading lives of real dignity and goodness, and you hear about crazy, but it’s rarer than you think….

If there is real solace in this, I think it’s that, for all the hyperbole and vitriol that’s become part of our political process, when the reality of that rhetoric, when actions match the disturbing nature of words, we haven’t lost our capacity to be horrified. And please, god, let us hope we never do…

Someone or something will shatter our world again. And wouldn’t it be a shame if we didn’t take this opportunity and the loss of these incredible people and the pain that their loved ones are going through right now, wouldn’t it be a shame if we didn’t take that moment to make sure that the world that we are creating now that will ultimately be shattered again by a moment of lunacy, wouldn’t it be a shame if that world wasn’t better than the one that was previously lost?

The full video is here:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Arizona Shootings Reaction
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog</a> The Daily Show on Facebook

Things I saw today (Ghosts in the hollow, Appalachian heart)

Sunday, April 4th, 2010

I found this haunting video of coal mining towns of Appalachia.

Ghosts in the Hollow from Jim Lo Scalzo on Vimeo.

I grew up in Appalachia in a small town in the mountains of Pennsylvania in dairy and mining country and the landscapes and tumbling buildings in Scalzo’s video are very familiar.

mountains and mist mountains

While our father’s mother was from Dutch high society, our beloved mother’s mother was definitely a mountain person (a ridgerunner vs. a flatlander) and it’s a form of mild family pride that during prohibition she was a rum runner. Quilts and stories and carefully maintained pieces of furniture were passed to us from our mother. Our Mom seems to have endless second or third cousins and if she doesn’t have an existing connection with someone, with her warmth, interest and charm, she easily makes new connections. She dragged us through and I know now, steeped us, in some of the history, art and traditions (she even made us do folk dancing, once filmed for local TV and mercifully, I hope, lost to time). As a lay person and later a minister our father (who is also a lawyer and was DA for 16 years) did the Sunday and holiday services for more than 30 years in a small, underprivileged coal mining town miles away from the main (2 lane) road. Going to the little town with him was always more duty than joy – the dirt roads bumpy, the company houses all eerily the same, only an outhouse (still in the 80s) for the church – the people varyingly friendly or suspicious, contented or unhappy just like anywhere.

The older I get the more clearly I see how the long-term economic and educational disadvantages of the area is a kind almost institutionalized impediment and the invisibility of, or even worse, the disdain directed at its people is a strangely acceptable and open form of discrimination. I’m not sure I can find the words to write about my anger at the sneering contempt and self-satisfaction which masquerades as humor against “hillbilies” and country people with lower socio-economical status (what the hell is so contemptible about shopping at a discount store, about trying to survive and provide for your family when you don’t have much money or are lacking sufficient hipster style!?). I find this smug, privileged attitude disgustingly arrogant and mean-spirited. People who would probably recoil from telling racist jokes still seem to feel free to mock and demean people based on their socio-economic status, appearance or geographic location. (Hmm. ok, maybe I did find a few words after all).

country road country road

When I was younger I couldn’t wait to move away. Both my twin and I travelled to Australia for a year long foreign exchange in high school and out of state for college (both very rare things for anyone in any of the towns nearby). We were raised to speak (no ‘aints’ allowed) and to have different aspirations from many of the people around us. Fairly or unfairly, perhaps fortunately, different expectations were placed on us. We didn’t quite fit in but maybe we weren’t necessarily supposed to – existing within but slightly to the side of things.

Once when I was working at an arts college in Boston I met a friend of a visiting artist, a woman whose book I’d just happened to read. Though raised in Hawaii it turned out she’d spent a bit of time with extended family in another small town near where I grew up. Looking at me perhaps a bit more closely she said: “I wondered if anyone ever got out of that town.” and, at that time at least, I felt a small bloom of pride at making my way ‘out’ to such a vastly different life from where I started – working in a gallery, passing as a city person.

But no matter how many years I’ve lived in cities, because my parents, sister and nieces were there, PA was always ‘home’ and I always feel a great relief and peace at coming back to the mountains. The older I get the more I realize how strongly attached I am to the place and people and, no matter what urban veneer I might have acquired over the years, how deeply I am molded and held by the place.

Things I saw today – elk calf frolicking in a puddle

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

via TYWKIWDBI with the quote:

“All animals, except man, know that the principal business of life is to enjoy it.”
– Samuel Butler

an elk calf frolicking in a puddle

and this decides it – I’m off to go for a walk outside

Just because it’s awesome (Portishead)

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010

I rarely listen to iTunes on shuffle but today on a whim was listening to some random stuff and was reminded how gorgeous Portishead’s “Roads” is. It’s layered, simple and achingly sad:

I remember in 2008 when Third came out being absolutely mesmerized by “Machine Gun”. I must have listened to it 20 times in a row on the day I first heard it. It makes my heart race slightly andI find it both disturbing and beautiful which is kind of a rare thing in music.

Also worth checking out is “Chase the tear” which they did for Amnesty International.

update 6 March 2010

Yves brought up another fantastic Portishead song and video: We Carry On. He very correctly described the song as hypnotic, loud and sad. The video is uniquely beautiful and almost distressingly dark.

Just because it’s awesome (Gotan Project – tango)

Monday, February 1st, 2010

This video inspired me to take tango lessons (with a well-matched partner such fun, fun, fun!)

The song is fantastic and the video is graphically beautiful and additionally awesome for having M/M and F/F as well as the more traditional F/M couples. Such a beautiful and sexy dance.

Just because it’s awesome (Norm Walsh – Geek Rockstar)

Sunday, January 24th, 2010

Koalie found this fantastic video of Norm Walsh for Mark Logic which depicts him as an XML Rock Star. I love that these ads show there are heroes and stars in the world of technology, that geeks are awesome. That this is Norm, whom I know, makes it even better.

Norm is a great guy: super smart, curious, kind and of course, as you may be able to tell from the fact that he did the ad at all, he has a great sense of humor.

This is easily the most awesome thing I’ve seen in ages.

Things I saw today (minimalist joyful pleasure-making)

Sunday, January 3rd, 2010

Zimoun : Sound Sculptures & Installations | Compilation Video V1.5 from ZIMOUN VIDEO ARCHIVE on Vimeo.

a quite lovely and soothing sound/art video by Swiss artist Zimoun, (aptly) titled: minimalist joyful pleasure-making (via moon river)

Around the same time that I saw the above I saw a great image (via the ever-amazing nevver)

Perhaps I’m a bit too minimalist in my tastes or already moved by the mundane but I think the radiator is plenty beautiful without a fez.