Some things I stumbled across lately or not so lately.
- Whoever’s behind Kicks Condor is definitely more into blogging than I am–with a level of seriousness I just can’t muster. I appreciate the energy behind this deliriously visually expressive site. I’d be happy to see some of that early 2000s blog energy come back though!
- Kicks Condor has this cool tool called Fraidy Cat for keeping track of a bunch of stuff (blogs, twitter, instagram, etc) in once place. Me, I just use Netnewswire (have been since its beginning), but I’ll give Fraidy Cat a whirl.
- Communion of Saints is a 77 track album (it almost needs some other word…) of songs that commemorate 77 of the canonized saints. Haunting and mesmerizing. (I’ve been streaming it. I’m on track 39, Jessica Way – Daughter Of Light (St Philomena)). I’m mostly just impressed with the scope and execution of this project. (Found on The Last Blog.)
- “Stab a Book, the Book Won’t Die” by Craig Mod. As a bibliophile, I always enjoy reading what Craig has to say about books and the book industry. Looking at things, historically, from the perspective of the book can lend some intriguing insights, as this essay does. “A printed book is an object over which no third party has agency once in your possession.” Contrast this with [fill in the blank with a modern technological contrivance, such as a smartphone].
- Related to the above: “Reading in the Age of Constant Distraction” by Mairead Small Stead. For me, reading books was often a distraction from other things, so it’s weird to have so many distractions now from reading books. Beautifully put: “The gift of reading, the gift of any encounter with art, is that this time spent doesn’t leave me when I lift my eyes from the book in my lap: it lingers, for a minute or a day.”
- Sometimes I recall books and then can’t remember their titles. I find this deeply frustrating, but sometimes I manage to track them down, like Stephen Elliot’s book Happy Baby. I saw him read from this book at Powell’s Books a long, long time ago.
- This visual essay about maps on Lapham’s Quarterly is beautiful and worth checking out.
- That’s all for today.
* I found it on this list of animals that start with U.
I’ve been thinking about weblogs a lot lately. Not sure why. I’ve had mine for quite a while now. Originally, blogs or “web logs” were a way to keep notes on things you saw on the web. Just lists of links, I guess. At least that’s my memory of it. In that vein, here’s a bunch of links from my recent aimless wanderings through the internet.
- I’ve gotten a lot out of Robin Sloan’s weekly newsletter, The Year of the Meteor, over the last year. (scroll down for links to all 52 of them). Every one had a link or two to something I found fascinating and something to think about. I briefly considered starting an email newsletter, but boy it seems like too much work.
- There was a time before tabbed browsing (one window for each web page, egad!) and I remember I first discovered tabs with Mozilla Firefox. (I remember a conversation where I basically tried to sell my friend on tabbed browsing–he was skeptical.) Now, there are just so many tabs. I don’t know why I’m afraid to just close them. Sometimes it’s just not being sure what to do with them, like this IMDB page for the 1978 film, Jubilee, about a time traveling Queen Elizabeth. Or this Wikipedia page on the Peter Ackroyd book, The House of Doctor Dee, which seems long out of print (maybe I’ll interlibrary loan it?). Or this Wikipedia page on an Anthony Burgess book that describes 99 20th century novels he feels are worth reading (I will almost certainly never read this and the WP page handily provides the entire list).
- Sometimes they’re things I mean to read later, like this science fiction story, “A Priest, a Rabbi, and a Robot Walk Into a Bar” by Andew Dana Hudson. I’ve never heard of the author before, but I liked the story title. Still haven’t read it! For a long time, I was using Instapaper to keep track of things I wanted to read from the web, but once I got to 500+ saved things, I sort of stalled out on it. That’s a pretty daunting queue!
- There was about a decade that I wasn’t obsessed with tabletop roleplaying games, but that decade isn’t now. The Principia Apocrypha: Principles of Old School RPGs, or, A New OSR Primer is exactly what it says on the tin. (OSR stands for “Old School Roleplaying” or sometimes “Old School Revival”.) This is a pretty good resources if you want to know what RPGs are all about. (OSR itself is pretty complex and this blog post about what the hell OSR means is pretty comprehensive.)
- I just spent an hour trying to remember the name of Dorothy Dunnett’s Game of Kings so it seemed worth writing down. Great book!
- Man of Medan seems like a pretty fascinating horror game. (This was the oldest “tab” on my phone.)
An appeal to your right brain
An appeal to your left brain
And, if you’re in Washington, and you want to be a part of (Democratic) things, you have to go to the Caucuses on Saturday, February 9:
Find a (Democratic) Caucus
“Add + Value” courtesy of Tim Boucher.