kitkat

A LITTLE BACKGROUND

The info below might be helpful, or might NOT be... depends on what you're looking for. It's simply a few fave interests of mine. The background music (provided you have JavaScript enabled & are running IE) is from Frank Zappa (Sleep Dirt) and is 4 minutes long. Click the "Stop" button on your browser's toolbar to stop the sound... click "Refresh" to re-start it. More Frank below...

WHAT'S UP... (AVEC MOI)

I've only been online since the spring of 2000 (during the last millennium I was too busy). I generally use Mozilla's Firefox 2.0 to browse these days, although Internet Explorer still offers many nice extra's (sound & transitions, etc). I write & edit all my page's code in text form with NoteTab. And although I try to make it cross-browser compatible, it's an impossible task... sorry!

I edit my graphics with PhotoImpact 6, although I'll occasionally fire up the (over-rated) Photoshop. For editing audio, I like Sound Forge. I'm a Jack of all trades, master of none... but decide for yourself. Here's a shot of my desk-top if you're curious. (PS: if you didn't recognize any jacks here... you're not hip! LOL.)

THE CAMERA

[This topic is left here from the early sports photo pages I once had online. Most are down now, but a few track, cross country & basketball pics remain (in different formats) on other pages here. I kept this here for anyone new to digital photography or otherwise interested in it.]

A longtime 35mm camera guy, I only recently made the change to digital. The evolution of digital cameras has finally progressed to where the differences in quality (to film) only show up with expensive large & medium format cameras and expensive 35mm lenses. The best way to work out the bugs and limitations of this new medium was to use it, and by shooting action (sports) stuff, I set to discover the limits of the camera.

What I found was very impressive for a non-pro camera (Olympus). As for quality... of the stuff I've uploaded, I'd rate most of it average... certainly there's a lot of improvement to be done. But bear in mind that my shots were experimental and vary from their original size & resolution in their edited form. Prints from un-compressed files look pretty good... better than the resolution seen on any video monitor. My non-sports photos are not online, mostly because the web is absolutely filled with great (& lousy) photos already. I've written a bit more about digital cameras on my tech page, which can be found from the top navigation bar on most of my pages.


SOME FAVORITE THINGS

All of the opinions below are mine. The links are hot, so the curious can click on them. Hope you discover something new. Expand your mind!


graphic colorization by jackson

Frank's view of love songs. Best to wait till the background music stops before clicking this... unless you enjoy chaos. (& provided your browser is actually playing the background music by Zappa). In either case, hit your browser's "stop" button to stop any/all sounds, and hit "refresh" to re-start Frank's Sleep Dirt background music.

Frank Zappa

.... The scientists tell us that Hydrogen is the most common element in the universe.... but the scientists are wrong... Hydrogen is not the most common element in the universe. The most common element in the universe is stupidity.

He was a talented musician and composer who performed in the Rock genre to pay the bills, but wrote reams of classical music. He was also a social critic... an independent-thinking individual who was quite often misunderstood by the public and his generation -- his opinions were not always what the otherwise prejudiced listener might expect. He not only questioned things in the status-quo of music, culture and politics, but did it in a way that made his (peers) in the music industry appear as the airheads so many are. He was also a guitar-hero in his own right, playing a hybrid free-form of jazz improvisation all his own.

His early landmark albums are all unique... from his first album with his band The Mothers Of Invention, Freak Out [the first Rock double LP]... to the jazz-rock/fusion prototype Hot Rats... to the highly original [and Downbeat magazine award winners], Burnt Weeny Sandwich, and Uncle Meat... to the part counter-culture satire / part Beatles parody, We're Only in it For The Money... to the timeless and sublime Lumpy Gravy.

Frank pioneered many studio and recording techniques, and introduced many musical features new to the rock paradigm. He was also one of the first to embrace digital recording and bring it into the mainstream. His notoriety as only a satire and humor musical artist does not do him full justice. He influenced musicians around the globe, and expanded the musical horizons of many music lovers. Greg Russo's book: Cosmic Debris: The Collected History and Improvisations of FZ, is the single best book on his life and work. For those who'd prefer a shorter intro to his life and work, Richard Abowitz's Gadfly article, is a good start. Beyond that, beware that there are more web-sites on Zappa than any other composer. [my own small page will be up one of these days...] Frank's candor, wit, and nonconformity will be missed... but his music lives on.

When we celebrate Ignorance and make that the National Standard of Excellence, we embarrass ourselves. We celebrate it in hit records, TV sitcoms, most films, most commercials and, to a great extent, in our schools.


Information is not knowledge
Knowledge is not wisdom
Wisdom is not truth
Truth is not beauty
Beauty is not love
Love is not music
Music is THE BEST

postrel

Virginia Postrel

... until recently, was the editor of Reason Magazine, and is one of the brightest, clear-thinking commentators on our modern world. She now occasionally writes an economic piece for the New York Times, among other projects. Her book, The Future and it's Enemies is a look at why the future holds promise, not the negative "world is coming to an end" pabulum so prevalent from politicians & the media. Postrel has a C-SPAN Booknotes interview online about that book where she talks about her views of modern technology, culture, free-markets, and the human search for the excellence in life and art. (that interview is also available there via video streaming mode.)

gre

Brian Greene

... is a theoretical physicist with the ability to explain the complexities of 21'st century String Theory to the general public. For those with real curiosity on the mysterious workings of the universe, in as much as it can be understood in today's world, Dr Greene is one of the very few who can illuminate the unexplainable. His book The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions and the Quest for Ultimate Theory does just that. In as much as we could explain flight, radio, or photography to people living a thousand years ago, Brian Greene tries to explain our world of eleven dimensions (you thought there were only 4?) and shed some light on this complex subject. ** NEW (10-03): PBS has just finished a TV program based around the book called The Elegant Universe.

photo by jackson-10-02

Aimee Mann

... is one of today's brightest musical talents. Her I'm With Stupid album was one of the best in the entire decade of the 90's. She is slowly gaining a larger audience. I've put up 2 items about her myself: A review of 2 of her albums, written by a friend, originally published in The Audiophile Voice magazine, and a photo-story I did of a live performance (sample at left). Aimee is more than just another singer or performer... she is a songwriter and musician... the kind of true artist that's becoming all too rare in today's mass-marketing and selling of inferior product in radio, television, movies, and magazines.

shep

Jean Shepherd

... made his name in great live radio drama but his career included television, film, magazines and books. His well-crafted stories occur within the simple everyday lives of people in the post-WW2 era in the heartland of the US. His ear for dialog is exceptional. He wrote the (now popular) film A Christmas Story ('83), blending some of his old storylines together, and he narrates it as well.
  Upon once hearing him described as a humorist, I became a bit annoyed... until I realized that the only other people I knew of who were called humorists were Mark Twain and Will Rogers -- pretty good company. Indeed, his work possesses the same droll view of life. In addition to his short stories, Shep's spoken radio shows were without equal. Just ask anyone who grew up listening to them. There are many great Shep sites, including flick lives, which has mp3 music files, info on all his broadcasts, and much more
   * update (3-05): A new book about Shep has just come out: Excelsior You Fathead - The Art and Enigma of Jean Shepherd, by Eugene Bergmann. A well researched biography of a complicated man. Here's a bit of Shep's wisdom from there:

One of the funniest things that I have ever known — one of the saddest and I think, one of the most significant — of course I have a sneaking suspicion that almost anything that man embarks on there is a touch of sadness connected with it anyway. There is the in-built sliver of — well — frustration. The dream never quite comes up to the reality. Well, a friend of mine... (Shepherd is telling a story about a car racing mishap)

Have you ever stopped to think of all the business of mankind — all the trivia — all of it — including all the great making of automobiles, all the fantastic operations that go on — what is it all about anyway? I mean, really. You eat, you sleep, and you die. This is about the extent of it, you know. When all of it is sloughed away. All the rest of it, as George Ade put it one time — George Ade said that fun is the few moments that you can forget that you're growing old and are about to die. And there's much truth to this.

sowell

Thomas Sowell

... is an economist who writes about history & culture with a clarity that's rare among academics. He cuts through much of the misinformation and assumptions that allow too many politicians to deceive voters with outright lies. His own site which lists his books and magazine articles is a good place to start for the newcomer. Many may be familiar with his nationally syndicated newspaper columns and editorial writings which focus on current political & cultural trends.
  His books are rich with historical truths, facts and insights which illustrate realities about markets, economic forces, and freedom. Migrations and Culture is a 15-year research showing how conquest has changed cultures, societies and civilizations. The Vision of the Anointed is an analysis of the failed social policies of the past 30 years and their consequences. Inside American Education is an exposé of our government's anti-American dogma-filled, totalitarian-imposed, and intellectually bankrupt education system. A beacon of common sense and truth in our often confusing modern world.

tour

Cycling

... is one of the most physically demanding sports around... it's also an enjoyable activity for the more casual sports fan -- far more enjoyable than running for staying in shape [but getting more dangerous with increased traffic on the roads today]. Professional cycling requires remarkable skill and physical talent, and a super-human ability to suffer. Most Americans have little appreciation or knowledge of the sport, and are clueless of it's storied history. We're lucky to finally have the opportunity to see the uncut Tour de France in the US this year (July of 2001) on the Outdoor Life Network (OLN-TV). Velo News is the authoritative source for all cycling news. I also have a small page right here with my advice for new cyclists.

hitchens

Christopher Hitchens

...is one of today's most erudite social commentators. He's fiercely honest, stylish, and fiercely independent. Born in Britain, he decided to become a US citizen after 9-11. Politically he's a left-leaning socialist, yet supports the world war against Isalmofacism, alienating many of his friends. Hitchens is a fan of George Orwell and writes with his same moral clarity. Hitchens has written a ton of essays (just like Orwell did), appearing in many magazines like Vanity Fair and on the web in places like Slate. He writes on politics, culture, history and art, and loves to punctures sacred cows -- from President Clinton, to Henry Kissinger, to Mother Teresa. His latest book is on Thomas Jefferson. A world traveler with a first rate intellect, he's a joy to read or listen to debate... a refreshing break from the typical media prima donnas today.

turn up your woofers honey!-graphic by jackson

Time Machines

...What do telescopes, cameras, and audio recording devices have in common? They all allow you to go back in time. In addition to photography, another of my favorite pastimes is recreating an authentic musical reality. I've hand-built dozens of speaker systems, and the electronics to go with them. On one hand, it's a search for perfect realism; it's also a zen-like experimental journey into the physics, technology, and art of electronic design. I'll be putting some related web-pages up on some of my speaker projects. I'm currently working with what some see as the exotic realm of singled-ended [SE] valve [tube] amps. Is it retro... or state-of-the-art? (it's neither... but who cares! Just crank it up!)

stoll

Clifford Stoll

... is an astronomer who stumbled across some hackers in his astronomy-research computer, ended up helping the FBI track them down, and wrote the book The Cuckoo's Egg about it. He then wrote the thoughtful and intriguing book Silicon Snake Oil: Second Thoughts on the Information Highway. He followed that up with High Tech Heretic, where he "questions our over-infatuation with the Internet, the overselling of the information highway and the overpromotion of computers in education." The first half of it is called Why Computers Don't belong in the Classroom.:

Want a nation of dolts? Just center the curriculum on technology -- teach with videos, computers, and multimedia systems. Aim for the highest possible scores on standardized tests. Push aside such less vocationally applicable subjects as music, art, and history. Dolts is what we'll get.
 
 
I see a parallel between the goals of "Sesame Street" and those of children's computing. Both are pervasive, expensive, and encourage children to sit still. Both display animated cartoons, gaudy numbers, and weird, random noises. Both encourage passive acceptance of a medium that will follow them for the rest of their lives. Both give the sensation that by merely watching a screen, you can acquire information without work and without discipline. And both shout the magical mantra: "Here's the no-effort, fun way to learn!"
  I disagree. Learning isn't easy. It's often not fun. It takes work and discipline. Dancing numbers and singing frogs can't teach arithmetic. Glitzy computer programs can't teach children to treat others as they would have others treat themselves.
  The Global schoolhouse gives plenty of demonstrations to politicians, reporters, and school administrators, but there's darn little research to support this insistent drive for computers in the classroom.
 
 
What exactly is being taught using computers? On the surface, a student is learning how to read and type and use programs. I'll bet that they're really learning something else.
  Kids Learn to stare at a monitor for hours on end. How to accept what a machine says without arguing. That world is a passive, preprogrammed place, where one click on the mouse gets the right answer. They're learning transitory and shallow relationships from instant e-mail. That discipline isn't necessary when they can zap frustrations with a keystroke. That grammar, analytic thought, and human interactions don't matter.
  In these ways, computers compliment television. No technological pathway -- neither Muppet nor modem, -- leads directly to a good education.

He is an excentric speaker ...excentric because he appears to have a swarm of bees in his head as he speaks; but his message has clarity, even if I don't agree with all of it. He makes one question things, and asks what is really important; helping put things into perspective... always a laudable thing IMO. The way some on the web vilify him shows that he has touched a nerve by pointing out some truths and warnings of technology.

Walking in Yosemite Park, I met a hiker with all the latest paraphernalia hanging from his belt: pager, GPS locator, and electronic altimeter. Amid the quiet of the sugar pines, his cell phone squawked and I overheard one side of his conversation with some New York advertising firm: "Tell both clients that I won't be able to make Monday's meeting," he told an unseen secretary. "I'll get them a proposal when I'm over this cold."
  Here's a guy who's brought all the stress of his office into the tranquility of the forest. He's never lost and always in reach. At the same time, he's utterly lost and out of touch.

coltrane

A Love Supreme

... A Love Supreme by John Coltrane is not only on my top-10 desert island discs... it's at the top of that list. Amazing beauty and spiritual depth -- all that great art is and has to offer... by one of the master artists of the 20'th century.




Dennis Prager

... is a writer who hosts a radio talk-show in Los Angeles. He is someone concerned with our cultural ethics and values, and is a beacon of common sense in this sometimes crazy world. One of his oft-told stories is about the invariable response he gets when speaking to large groups of high school students. He asks them: if faced with a situation of saving either a drowning stranger, or saving a drowning dog, what would they do? A third typically choose to save the dog... and another third don't know or pick neither. If that response troubles you, Prager believes it's because we've largely failed to teach our youth certain basic values and lessons... moralistic tenants of a good society.
He's written some thoughtful books that explore serious philosophical and moral questions, but are grounded in real life situations, not ivory tower prattle. And many of his reasoned comments & political opinion pieces can be found online, including this one on our out-of-control legal system. And thanks to technological development, his radio broadcasts have recently become available online via streaming or podcasts. A synopsis of his political evolution & current views; along with his thoughts on what is "progressive" are at the left... each is about 3 minutes.

bvr

Leave It To Beaver

... still one of the funniest and most accurate depictions of being a kid ever made. Despite lectures to the contrary, the Beaver always manages to do what he is forbidden to... and then usually tries to lie his way out of accepting responsibility. Will he ever grow up and learn? [will we?] A short and hip psychological study on the show, Debunking the Beaver, has some funny insights on the show and it's characters. The show is still being shown on the TV-Land network. Entertainment with moral-lessons.... what a concept!

patto

PATTO!

... One of the best, yet largely unknown, rock bands of the '69-73 era, Patto is among my top-10 favorites of all time. (I'm a collector with thousands of recordings) Guitarist Ollie Halsall was the equal of Hendrix, Beck, or Clapton; and his jazzy approach has some Django in it. Many guitarists, from bands like Cheap Trick to XTC consider him a hero and influence, despite his never hitting it "big". He was considered for the Rolling Stones back when Mick Taylor became their guitarist, but fate led to a different path. This huge linked site is a great labor of love by a friend of mine.
   And from another on-line source: "...[PATTO] had the finest and most innovative guitar player Britain has produced."
   Writer Barry Monks also has an online site about Ollie. There are sound samples there including some background sound on the enter page. Barry also published a tribute in Guitarist magazine just after Ollie Halsall's death: "In the overall scheme of things, there are two albums which anyone who imagines they can play guitar should hear. One is Are You Experienced, the other is Hold Your Fire. Simply listen!"

paglia

Camille Paglia

...joins Christopher Hitchens as probably the two most iconoclastic writers and critics today. A professor of Humanities, Camille remained below the public's radar until 1990 when her first book Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson, was published. That book and her subsequent essays on art, beauty, and social issues received considerable critical praise. She's since become even more celebrated from her compelling speaking engagements as a social & cultural critic.

She's a classic liberal, yet detests the way today's leftist (elites) have abandoned and warped so many cultural issues from the (true classic) liberalism that peaked in the 60's. She has visceral contempt for such liberal elites & political leftists in higher education -- their lack of intellectual vigor... their abandonment of traditional knowledge, beauty & art... and how they've corrupted true liberal ideals with their facile & hypocritical musings. In that vein, here's part of the last piece in her 1992 collection of essays: Sex, Art, and American Culture. It's the transcript of a speech she gave at M.I.T. in '91, and echoes her speaking style -- full of furious criticism and often laugh-out-loud funny. It's a (very tiny) slice on the Feminist academic and hero (& future advisor to Al Gore) Naomi Wolf:

"And beauty, according to, um, Miss, um, Naomi Wolf, is a heterosexist conspiracy by men in a room to keep feminism back--and all that crap that's going on. I call her, by the way, "Little Miss Pravda." A talk show in Italy wanted to fly me over to appear with her. No. I always say, "Would Caruso appear with Tiny Tim?" If you want to see what's wrong with Ivy League education, look at The Beauty Myth, that book by Naomi Wolf. This is a woman who graduated from Yale magna cum laude, is a Rhodes scholar, and cannot write a coherent paragraph. This is a woman who cannot do historical analysis, and she is a Rhodes scholar? If you want to see the damage done to intelligent women today in the Ivy League, look at that book. It's a scandal. Naomi Wolf is an intelligent woman. She has been ill-served by her education. But if you read Lacan, this is the result. Your brain turns to pudding! She has a case to make. She cannot make it. She's full of paranoid fantasies about the world. Her education was completely removed from reality.

We should not have to apologize for reveling in beauty. Beauty is an eternal human value. It was not a trick invented by nasty men in a room someplace on Madison Avenue. I say in Sexual Personae that it was invented in Egypt. For 3,000 years at the height of African civilization you had a culture based on beauty. It is so provincial, feminism's problem with beauty. We have got to get over this. Addiction to anything is a problem. But this blaming anorexia on the media--this is Naomi's thing--oh please! Anorexia is coming out of these white families, these pushy, perfectionist white families, who all end up with their daughters at Yale. Naomi arrives in England, and "Gee, all the women Rhodes scholars have eating disorders. Gee, it must be...the media"! Maybe it's that you are a parent-pleasing, teacher-pleasing little kiss-ass! Maybe you're a yuppie! Maybe you, Miss Yuppie, have figured out the system. Isn't it interesting that Miss Naomi, the one who has succeeded in the system, the one who has been given the prizes by the system, she who is the princess of the system, she's the one who's bitchin' about it? I'm the one who's been poor and rejected--shouldn't I be the one bitching about it? No--because I'm a scholar, okay, and she's a twit!"

If you think that harsh, she goes after others, including feminist theorist Diane Fuss of Princeton, with even more fire. In '95 she was interviewed by Virginia Postrel. In fact, Camille's more recent 3-hour "In Depth" interview on C-SPAN-2 is worth checking out as well (streamed free from the link).

maya deren

Maya Deren

Maya Deren (Eleanora Derenkovskaya) was a film-maker whose work got me (even more) interested in film, the most complex & moving of the arts. There was recently ('03) a docu-drama film made about her -- she's hardly a house-hold name. A great over view of her career is here. She's best known for her experimental films, especially Meshes of the Afternoon ('43). My own film page (still unfinished... but it's up) has some movie quotes and a list of my favorites. The animation at left is my handiwork.

pete brown

Pete Brown

... Although musical tastes are largely a subjective matter, the lyrics part of songwriting falls into the realm of poetry. The number of pop, jazz, or rock lyric-writers that are worthy of much acclaim is small. Bob Dylan and Lennon-McCartney are in that select group... and so is Pete Brown. He's best known for writing the lyrics to many of Cream's songs. Those collaborations with Jack Bruce have kept Pete financially stable ever since. But beyond White Room and Theme For An Imaginary Western, Pete also wrote and sang with Piblokto -- a great, yet largely unknown British band. His style is ornate, and sometimes long... here's one of his shorter pieces, As You Said:

Let's go down to where it's clean
To see what time it might have been
The tides have carried off the beach
As you said,
The sun is out of reach

Let's go back to where it's clean
To see what year it might have been
The roads have carried off the smiles
As you said,
To judge them at the trials

So let's go back to now that's bad
To see what time we could have had
The rails have carried off the trains
As you said,
I'll never come again
robert pirsig

Robert Pirsig

...is the author of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. It's sub-title is "An Inquiry into Values" and it's that philosophical investigation that makes this book so enthralling (& a worldwide classic). I was lucky to read it when it came out in the early 70's. There's even the complete book online, which was originally rejected by 121 publishers -- just stupefying. Since then it's become a perennial strong seller, undoubtedly because of word of mouth. Although Pirsig is a naturally gifted writer, his subject matter here is of very deep intellectual stuff.
   The book consists of 3 ongoing parts which are intertwined. One is the story of Pirsig's cross-country motorcycle trip with his young son and 2 friends. Another part is his Chautauqua, a philosophical discussion that's tangentially about esthetics & the metaphysics of "quality." It's often deep rowing for any non-philosophy majors (myself included)... but it's where the real meat lies IMO. The other part is his recollection of the author's "old" self, a mysterious and frightful look into the soul and who we are. MOQ.org is an online discussion forum that has loads of essays and info about the book and it's philosophical topics. There's also an interesting 1-page timeline here of Pirsig's life.

aj

Arts and Letters Daily

... To be fair; and to counter those like Cliff Stoll, who feel the web CAN be largely a wasteland [rather, our use of it]... there are a few sites on the web that are unique in their richness, quality, and diversity. Arts and Letters Daily is one such site. It is a huge, single page of links to the best web-based stories that focus on literature, history, criticism, philosophy, culture, music and art. One could spend hours studying the latest reviews, news, columnists, and articles from around the world. It can duplicate the wonder and awe you felt as a child upon discovering what a fantastic place a library is.

tr4

Amateur Athletics

... I've grown more and more weary of today's professional sports teams. It's not just the negative influence and corruption by big-money, big-business, and media influences that I tire of, but a similar erosion into college, high-school and youth sports competition, where sports has traditionally been more exciting and pure. This influence is even impacting many of the basic ideals and concepts so intrinsic to sports competition... and with it, a lot of the fun.
   Here's just one pet-peeve: Coaches taking away all the thinking for the kids -- How many HS quarterbacks call their own plays... little league players swing on their own... baseball players try to throw out runners instead of safely playing the percentages and throwing to the cut-off man... base-runners try to stretch a single to a double? In their psychologically-warped-mimicking of professional sports, many youth-coaches have dumbed-down sports for kids. They've let their own ego's take much of the fun out of sports for kids. But, enough of my ranting...
   Some of the best pure athletic competition exists right in most people's backyards, with great high school athletic contests. I've done a number of web pages on various amateur teams and players... some basketball stuff, [which includes the 39-0, 2002 NCAA National Champion UConn women's team]... and a high school conference page I did, ECC Track, if you appreciate terrific track athletes. A few other basketball pages are still up too. All photography at each site is mine.

landsburg

Steven Landsburg

... is an economics professor and writer who has the ability to explain the realities of economics to the average person. He gives a real education in logic and common sense to one of the most misunderstood & poorly grasped social sciences. Landsburg is a disciple of Milton Friedman, who is only one of the 20'th century's most distinguished economist. The Armchair Economist, and Fair Play, are two of his books.

bonzos
album3

The Bonzo Dog Band

... was a unique musical treasure from the late 60's, and sadly, too little known. Led by Neil Innes (great site), they were a satire/parody band that could mimic everything from 1920's jazz, to their contemporary pop superstars: the Beatles... and they were also an original rock band equal in songwriting talent to the Beatles themselves. Indeed, Paul McCartney produced one of their 45's. After 5 albums, and some solo work, Neil re-surfaced in The Rutles, a loving parody of Beatlemania in the form of an album, as well as a movie. Fellow British madcap Eric Idle, of Monty Python's Flying Circus, came up with the idea and played Paul McCartney. Neil played John Lennon and was responsible for the music, lyrics, and much zaniness. Here's a snippet of lyrics by Neil from his solo work:

Oh, what I'd give once more to live
In childhood innocence
The things men do with words so true
Would seem much more like common sense

An empire built on civilized guilt
Yet the homeland still is the stranger
To my friends who make amends
But in tryin' see no danger

So come on, have yourself a good time
Go out and share the blame
Do what you should but if it makes you feel good
I hope you feel no shame
prisoner

THE PRISONER

... is one of the most imaginative and thought-provoking TV series ever produced. It still holds up well, over 30 years later. Patrick McGoohan had just finished the TV show Secret Agent, and with it's popularity was given the rare artistic freedom to develop another TV production. He wrote, produced, directed, and acted in what would become a cult favorite. It is an allegory that, like all good art, opens itself up to all manner of thematic speculation. It is a testament to McGoohan that with all the TV fare that has come after it, The Prisoner remains provocative and daring. Some of the major ideas in it are the philosophical nature of freedom and the nature (abuse) of political power in society, much in the manner of fellow Brit's George Orwell & Aldous Huxley. But at it's core, it is entertaining, artistic, original television... unlike the huge amount of simple-minded junk that litters so much of today's airwaves. Click the button under the animation for a quick 10 second audio sample (provided your browser supports javascript)

HIKING

.... I've been hiking since I was a kid over much of New England and a lot of the Appalachian Trail. A great way to get away from the rat-race, recharge your psyche, and see nature. These are some shots I took on the Presidential range of the White Mts in NH. They are not digital images... they're from my 35mm prints I scanned. (float mouse for title)

white mountains-proceed at your own risk
 
tuckerman's headwall
great gulf
Galehead below SouthTwin-interesting cloud shadow
whites
smokey

If you've come this far looking for some personal info, sorry.
This first grade pic will have to do.
Or take a look at this pic with dad around the same time.
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grab a drink and be cool
ws

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