Friday, April 30, 2004

old diseases

Spreading through the blogosphere:
Old disease names and their modern definitions (via Incoming Signals)

I used to be fond of the odd old medical book and old medical book syndrome or archaic hyperchondria. And some of these conditions sound vaguely possible: Domestic Illness, Humour Flux and Canine Madness... Well - I'm certain I exhibit some symptoms of the latter, anyway.


Your Glands Wear Out!... Who knew?

Gallery of Nostrums (via the eyes have it via things)

Comments: glands

Ah yes - reminds me of the character in "Love In A Cold Climate" who was always exercising his glands. An Inveterate Hyperchondriac who enjoyed bad health but lived to a ripe old age.
Posted by Nora at April 30, 2004 04:52 PM

I wonder whether the coupon is void?
Very tempted to send in for a free demonstration
Posted by boynton at May 1, 2004 12:49 AM

just ask lizzie

Fresh from reading a Today in Literature story on Hitchcock, De Quincey and the aesthetics of murder, I was taken to The Lizzie Borden Verse Box Magnetic Poetry (WE ALL KNOW WHAT CAN HAPPEN when you repress your emotions (just ask Lizzie). via Quiddity

Thursday, April 29, 2004


thought I'd better throw in a found picture, found searching for winter, as you do in mid autumn, in melbourne.

Two men at a council of adult education winter school. They pose with an "invisible" man, named "Ernie", between them.

Still I think I'd probably take the winter course over the summer one, ernie or not.

Images from the Museum Victoria Collection Biggest Family Album

more of the found at Found (via life in the present and exclamation mark)

Comments: winter

I think we've all worked with an "Ernie" at one point or another....
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 29, 2004 05:52 PM

...or gone out with the odd ernie, even... ;)
Posted by boynton at April 29, 2004 06:07 PM

Ohh, can't say I have done that, personally.
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 29, 2004 09:12 P


HOTEL - an interactive tale by H Hoogerbrugge

(via bifurcated rivets)


The Age Moving Pictures
Hollywood's depictions of artists certainly bear out the "caricatures, falling-outs and fights" theory. Add a dollop of romantic genius, some angst, provide a vicarious glimpse into a weird, bohemian world - and it's a wrap.

In answer to my own lazy dumb comment on artist biopics I googled around hoping to find a quickTop 100 tortured artist flicks list to no avail.

Within the amazone there are a couple of good personal lists :
Worthwhile artist & writer biopics & documentaries and Artists on Film

And this from the vincent subcategory
The films listed below are only the tip of the iceberg in terms of the dozens of different films focusing on Vincent van Gogh.

(wonder whether the rest of the gogh berg is listed out there floating somewhere in the invisible web)

Comments: biopics

Floating and visible, m'dear boynts old chappess. (Or would that be chappelle - for the crying in of?)
Posted by Sedgwick at April 29, 2004 04:10 PM

Ah - Of course!
Vinnie and Pablo probably starred together in that one?
Can just imagine a Valhalla full of Vincents.

Many thanks.
(and Happy with either pess or pelle,
possibly the latter is better
as I do like to have a good cry
but never pell-i.)
Posted by boynton at April 29, 2004 04:34 PM

Silly me. I had forgotten all about "Frida." Although I guess reviews were mixed. However, "Before Night Falls" was excellent. Thanks for the lists!
Posted by Anne at April 30, 2004 10:12 AM

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

nick drake

Stranger to the World The Inner Life of Nick Drake

Drake's sister would be lying if she said she hadn't entertained the notion of a film at some point. There have been several approaches. But in the end, as the guardian of Drake's legacy, the actress Gabrielle Drake finds it hard to see what would be served by such an exercise: 'He's a wonderful romantic hero. But any films about the lives of artists end up making them smaller, not bigger. It's hard to think of someone capturing those almost uncapturable nuances. Also, any film, in the end, is trying to be an explanation of the artist

Nick Drake Time has Told Me
These files constitute the entire contents of the limited vinyl triple album .
(via J walk)

Comments: nick drake

Personally I can imagine few things more boring than a Nick Drake film.
Posted by James Russell at April 28, 2004 03:45 PM

I thought I had missed one already on SBS last year?

anyway - I was hoping a cinephile would weigh in with a few examples of good films about artists, James. Are there any?
(I was too rushed to do a proper post on this)
I suspect there might even be a film which makes an artist bigger than they were - ie the film might eclipse them?
Posted by boynton at April 28, 2004 04:04 PM

To a small extent, I get rather confuse as what or who largely imitates whom...
Posted by Jozef at April 28, 2004 09:19 PM

You're right, most movies about rock stars are bad-costume festivals. I did like "Time of No Reply" which was the Nick Drake documentary out about a year or so ago. Can't think of many artist biopics I've liked, except "Carrington," but I'm a Bloomsbury enthusiast.
Posted by Anne at April 29, 2004 04:19 AM

(hits "post," chokes, shrieks "nooooooo!" alarming neighbors)

Sorry, the documentary was called "A Skin Too Few." What was I thinking?
Posted by Anne at April 29, 2004 04:21 AM

I can sometimes agree. My life seems a mass of tangled wires that connect somehow...somewhere...
Posted by Mel at April 29, 2004 08:25 AM

Yes I guess it can all get a bit recursive
(See 'Girl with the Pirl E') sometimes, Jozef.

(I must have been pretty confused myself lumping biopic and doco and artist into one query...)

Anne - that was the one I missed. Must catch up with it. And I agree about Carrington.
Also Watkins' Edvard Munch was pretty good.

My life is like that too, Mel. (Although perhaps less exciting)
Posted by boynton at April 29, 2004 02:18 PM

If a film about an artist has been any good, it's probably been a documentary rather than a fictionalised biopic. I can't think of any of the latter off the top of my head that I'm particularly keen on.

Wouldn't refer to myself as a cinephile either. I'm someone who enjoys watching films, which is in my opinion different from a cinephile. (If you're really interested I have a whole essay on the subject that I can show you...)
Posted by James Russell at April 29, 2004 07:49 PM

Sorry about the terminology, James.
(I had thought the c word was less offensive than the f b word, but I guess both are quite wrong)

Yes I would be interested in the essay (linked?)

Still think 'Edvard Munch' was ok. But that's off the top of my swirling head too...
Posted by boynton at April 29, 2004 08:29 PM

Oh don't worry, it's probably only me that finds the c word offensive :) I don't have the essay linked anywhere, but will whack it into a zip file and mail it along to you...
Posted by James Russell at April 30, 2004 12:09 AM

Ooh, and I've just discovered SBS are showing that Edvard Munch film in two parts (the 8th and the 15th) next month...
Posted by James Russell at April 30, 2004 01:12 AM

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

twink and a link

One day I bought an old toy piano at a flea market. I liked it so much that I began collecting and writing little tunes on them. Soon I invited friends to play along, and thus was born a project by the name of twink.
Twink Toy piano music (via Hot soup Girl)

Experiment 111 Ballistics by Phillip Glofcheskie presented by Bitkraft Digital Theatrics
(via the presurfer)


sign in a shop window said "Huge Shoe Sale"
which boynton read as good news for giants.

Oddly this googled up page on giant feet leaves you guessing. But the blankness is rather ominous. Just how sinister can a kinesthetic opportunitiy in the classroom get?

My ecological footprint remains too big (via J walk)

But to shake hands with youth once more maybe I should just throw off the shoes and dance barefoot.

(ANR via This Public Address)

Alas. Too cold.

Monday, April 26, 2004


Actually I might try running the K 488 sonata in the background as I attempt this maze again. Maybe my neurons will fire up enough to negotiate the second obstacle.

(via fishbucket)

Comments: maze

Nope - that was a bit hard for me. It seems to be a be of a metaphor for life - keep moving, don't get sidetracked, not very forgiving... Well, maybe I am a bit depressed at the moment...
Posted by phlip at April 28, 2004 02:56 PM

Sorry to hear, Philip.
Best not to take these things too personally I guess, or my reading of the maze means my life is hoplessly stuck at the second hurdle and I have to give up.

Maybe try the cannon in the "ballistics" link - very forgiving and therapeutic I found. ;)
Posted by boynton at April 28, 2004 03:06 PM

mozart 4 rats

New research on the Mozart effect in rats:
Rats that heard a Mozart sonata expressed higher levels of several genes involved in stimulating and changing the connections between brain cells
(via Follow Me Here)

I know a couple of rats who might benefit from exposure to a little K488
although the jury may still be out.

And some rats are always going to prefer Beethoven...

Caption on screen: '613.4 SECONDS LATER' Beethoven's front door is opened by Mrs Beethoven.)

Mrs Beethoven: Yes?

Colin Mozart: Colin Mozart.

Mrs Beethoven: Oh, thank goodness you've come. We're having a terrible time with them bleeding rats. I think they live in his stupid piano already.

(They go into the house. We hear the first two bars of Beethoven's Fifth counter pointed by loud squealing.)

Monty Python's Flying Circus - Series 2 Episode 21


Which Pet would you be? (via diversionz)
(I suspect it's pretty easy to be a hampster in a two question quiz, one choice of which involves chocolate.)
But if like me, you would be a hampster, would you be able to produce midi melodies by manipulating the musical elements of rhythm and note-choice?

The latter is one of the many links in an excellent Snarkout post Musique mechanique on the evolution of synthesised music, with Mozart, Moog and metronomes spotted alongside the hamster-midis.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

hokey shakespeare

Shakespeare's Coined Words Now Common Currency
sorting the true from the faux.
(via Arts and Letters Daily)

A Shakespearean Glossary

The Hokey Pokey
by William Shakespeare

O proud left foot, that ventures quick within
(via darren barefoot)

Comments: hokey shakespeare

Here: is a related Shakespeare posting that includes the Bernard Levin paragraph that I saw/heard in __The Story of English__.
Posted by Doug L. at April 27, 2004 05:03 PM

Thanks Doug. The Levin is great.

This is the short and the long of it
Exceedingly well read
Thereby hangs a tale
Posted by boynton at April 27, 2004 11:23 PM

Friday, April 23, 2004

rainy day links

It's raining here in the city of Chromatic Dissolution for the first time in weeks. And it's cold. So here is a kind of rainy day umbrella posting of sights sans commentary or tangential reference to my dog.

Designing a Bird from memory
Born Magazine (via dumbfoundry)

Cards by Anne Taintor (via exclamation mark)

Old Bachelor and Stork Bingo at Cornell University Library Games we Play
(via life in the present)

Comments: rainy day links

I like the Born Magazine link very much!
Posted by michelle at April 25, 2004 07:40 AM

It's great isn't it...

btw I liked your pic of the Toothpick Tower
'A Tantalizing Game' indeed.
Posted by boynton at April 25, 2004 11:58 PM


The Hospital
Stay a while stay forever...

"The following montages intend to illustrate and translate the bizarre relation of the original purpose of the building and how it is today"

(I could easily stay a while, especially round "Becking")

(via diversionz)

Comments: hospital

Nice and creepy.
Posted by MG at April 23, 2004 03:20 AM

Yes, that Becking is.. out of tune, if my ears don't deceive me...
Posted by Scott at April 23, 2004 03:23 AM

...and full of surprises.

Out of tune? Sounded pretty good to me.
My ears must be less sharp.
I love the way it adjusts/absorbs as you creak along the tones.
Posted by boynton at April 23, 2004 02:45 PM

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

outer circle

The last link got me googling for nicknames for Melbourne (although if you have to google it, it's probably not a nickname?)
One of the pages returned was this List of closed Melbourne railway stations which was an intersting diversion.
Paisley sounds like a place for a psychadelic trip, but where were Barker and Shenley and Roystead - the latter names I have noticed while riding my bike on the old outer circle rail trail, which seems to be the fate of old rail lines.

A history of the Outer Circle Railway Anniversary Trail

see also Trains in The Distance, a personal reminiscence on railways, Melbourne and Model.
At last I will recreate the Outer Circle Line. In this way I will create the real Melbourne — the marvellous Melbourne that never quite came into existence — on that lawn in the future

Comments: outer circle

Though it's not closed, my favorite station what doesn't readily fall trippingly from the tongue is Anstey, the hidden jewel in the Upfield line.

(Actually Jewell is found 2 stops up and but it's far less sparkly than dear old Anstey.)
Posted by Sedgwick at April 21, 2004 03:52 PM

I liked "Chatam" in my commuting-from-the outer-east days. Descriptive of commuters, and even Onomatopoeic of train.

Elsewhere, 'Dennis' is pretty hard to beat.
(But I would have like to have been able to embark at Barker)

Posted by boynton at April 21, 2004 04:04 PM

Mind you, the City Circle Bicycle route that follows several kilometres of the old rail line is a lovely bike trip. So, at least some aspect of the line lives on.
Posted by phlip at April 23, 2004 10:08 AM

Yes - that link (from Roystead)has whetted the appetite. Must explore some more.
Posted by boynton at April 23, 2004 02:48 PM

i catch the train from chatham just about every we can see the Outer Circle (or the deepdene/east kew part)should have not been given the boot.
Posted by chris at May 27, 2004 05:36 PM


Good to know that the City of Chromatic Dissolution gets a guernsey in this list of City nicknames although I must confess to never having heard Melbourne referred to by this particular moniker. (Still don't think you can improve on one of the early names for the Settlement, Bareberp, or even marvellous Smelbourne a name that enjoyed currency in the boomtown 1880's)
(via the Presurfer)

Comments: smelbourne

these last two posts of yours are quite spookily connected to my current research quest -- searching for the rail timetable from Albury-melbourne for 1898 - 1899 (which I haven't managed to locate online, but have found some references elsewhere) & have open in front of me a book called Outcasts of Melbourne (trying to find some late 19th century references to aboriginal inhabitants of Melbourne, but strangely enough, not one word in this work), but chapter 8 is titled "Worst Smelbourne"....
Posted by wen at April 22, 2004 12:43 PM

I was dismayed to find that such info as timetables, maps, etc are not easily obtained on the web. (or the visible web, at least)
There are wonderful Railways sites and discussion boards, but I thought I'd be able to find a map or two somewhere.
Guess I still believe naively that all information can be googled somehow.

Love those spooky coincidental moments.
Posted by boynton at April 22, 2004 01:52 PM

I call it Squizzy.
Posted by Melby Batman at April 22, 2004 05:25 PM

or batmania, for those stricken by cricket?

btw - don't take a squiz at that site if you take your quizzes seriouzly,mb. The links may give one a competitive edge, or propel one into triviamania.
Posted by boynton at April 22, 2004 06:32 PM

I'm sorry to inform you, but even if you find those timetables, you have already missed that train, and you will not make it to Melbourne by 1899. Perhaps you meant timeTRAVELs instead?

I, too, like the name Bareberp. Sounds like the aftermath of a beer party at a naturists' convention. I may just have to add that, next time I update the City Nicknames list.
Posted by Doug L. at April 24, 2004 04:00 PM

Yes I like the sound of it too - the pick of the crop of early names from the time of first settlement:

"Melbourne was briefly named 'Batmania' after one of its founders, John Batman. Other proposed names included Bearbrass, Bareport, Bareheep, Barehurp and Bareberp."

In the interests of your list though, Doug, I have to confess that it is not widely known, and certainly not a nickname. Alas.
Sydneysiders would probably be the best placed to
furnish names for Melbourne, but they would be of the put-down variety. It's that Sydney/Melbourne rivalry thing.
The last nickname I remember hearing was "Bleak City"
Posted by boynton at April 25, 2004 06:29 PM

past life

I don't know how you feel about it, but you were male in your last earthly incarnation.
You were born somewhere in the territory of modern Phillippines around the year 700.
Your profession was that of a builder of houses, temples and cathedrals.

Your brief psychological profile in your past life:
Ruthless character, carefully weighing his decisions in critical situations, with excellent self-control and strong will. Such people are generally liked, but not always loved.

Do you remember now

(No... Run it past me again...)

Who were you in your last life? at the Big View
(via Okir)

Comments: past life

well, there must have been a bit of competition in the Philippine building industry then, because i got exactly the same.
Posted by dj at April 22, 2004 03:59 PM

I wonder if we are twins, or whether there aren't actually 365 (x however many years) worth of lives
I could run another birthday test to determine this but alas, September is "currently in development"
Posted by boynton at April 22, 2004 04:08 PM

Well, I was previously from Ontario, but I did like travel (even in THAT life), so perhaps I came to see some of your constructions. Hope they were good - because they had to last 1100 years until I arrived.
Posted by phlip at April 23, 2004 10:13 AM

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

dances with wolves

Plummie by Geoffrey T. Hellman a 1960 New Yorker article on P.G.Wodehouse.
I always write in the morning, and then take the hound for a three-mile walk after lunch"...
(via Portage)

I was just contemplating taking the wolf (aka blue heeler) for a three-miler but fear she would need more mileage than that to exorcise her daily demons. Earlier I had read on diversionz of the trend to dance with your dog.
Flo's got the freestyle waves and spins working independently.
But unlike Jill and Drizzle, boynton won't be doing the boot scootin boogie with this ACD.
Not sure if I could entirely trust my boot.


page 23, sentence 5: an autopsy
The "page 23, sentence 5" meme (hereafter referred to as p23s5) caught my attention due to its pandemic spread through the blog community, and its relative virulence among my own little, largely meme resistant affinity group ...

(via anil's daily links)

There's the meme and then there's the meme-tracking mutation which is also spreading. I'm still puzzled as to what it is about this one that incites investigation. My personal case history might include a note about a past association with Kaleidoscope, where each week Kevan would create six tasks for the players, some of which bore a resemblance to the nature of p23s5. Many of these could have spread, I'm not sure if they ever did. Which is also puzzling.
Is it the appeal of the random, the mysterious hold of chance? The instructions read like a recipe, extracted and uncited, the imperative rendered meaningless. But apparently lifted from somewhere to float about in the air, beguilingly, waiting to catch bloggers unaware. And then the elusive somewhere itself seems to promise meaning...
Maybe I was hoping to find a hidden game in the meme, a kaleidoscopic system somehere in the epidemiology.

In the meantime the Incoming Signals strain continues.

Comments: p23s5

Mm, I did wonder if any of the Kaleidoscope tasks would outlive the game, but they were all pretty untraceable, and the good ones probably demanded too much thought and effort. Successful LiveJournal memes and quizzes and stupid-web-toys just require a tiny shred of effort to generate a clump of "personalised" information, which can then be posted as original content (which is where the appeal and compulsion lies, I think).
Posted by Kevan at April 21, 2004 12:22 AM

This one was more clever and effective than most because the tiny shred of customization involved books, random and personal, and gave a bonus 'literary' edge to the content.
The randomness works best. To try to compose a good sentence from a careful selection is a different exercise. (Goodbye Fondue)
However there is also something of 'the call of the collage' in it too, which is why we have wanted to take it further I guess.

Kaleidoscope may have got us doing the two exercises and comparing them. Or searching for a
pXsX code in 5 random books that would deliver the best sentence?!
Complex, fun and missed.

Posted by boynton at April 21, 2004 11:52 AM


How To Gag On 'The Passion'
Nine fun-filled ways Mel Gibson's brutal snuff film makes a mockery of true belief. Clip n' save!
By Mark Morford

3) You wail, you scream, you nearly call an ambulance when you burn your finger on the stove while making popcorn. You know for a fact that no human body, no matter how divinely inspired, could ever withstand so much gleeful ultraviolent comical blood-drenched flesh rending as poor ol' Jesus does in the Jerusalem Chainsaw Massacre and not instantly pass out and/or immediately demand three quadruple Martinis and a fistful of holy Vicodin. I mean, please.

(via wood s lot)

More on the Jerusalem Chainsaw Massacre from a structural point of view at Darren Barefoot

Plot: The central dramatic question--will Jesus be crucified?--is answered far too early. There are no reversals or twists in the story, and the film lacks suspense.

Monday, April 19, 2004

evolving meme

Incoming signals has taken the 23/5 meme further and has called for submissions.

I couldn't stop at just one book; here are the nearest six. They almost form a little story of their own, in a weird way. In fact, I wonder if that isn't the next logical step in the evolution of this meme—take sentence No. 5 from page 23 of the six or ten books nearest you, and arrange them to form a new story. It's sort of a variation on the game Exquisite Corpse.

so 23/5 from the six nearest books arranged in some sort of narrative order:

What is roasting weather to some can be pleasing to others.

On the other hand you may have just the thing for a fondue cook-in on your own kitchen shelves.

What is Virtue?

My father trusted Paul, he said Paul could build anything and fix anything.

"He already said thank you."

Go and tell your father what you mean to do

Geoffrey Blainey Black Kettle And Full Moon Viking 2003
Marie Roberson Hamm The gold Medal Fondue Cookbook Fawcett 1970
Carol Churchill Plays: 2 Methuen 1996
Margaret Atwood Surfacing Virago 1977
Jonathan Franzen The Corrections Fourth Estate 2001
Enid Blyton The Happy Story Book Brockhampton Press 1955

Comments: evolving meme

This would be even more fun if you had to guess which line came from where -- really, I'd've like to have considered that the 'what is virtue' quote came from the fondue cookbook -- it's a thought that I've found often arises in a fondue situation (something to do with all the schnapps that's required to wash down the cheese)
Posted by wen at April 22, 2004 12:35 PM

Great idea, wen. I'll add it to the list of possible variants in my head.

And perfect observation. We're planning to have a few fondue do's over here soon, (insert rhymimg suburb name ) so I'll keep it it mind.

(Perhaps the whole lot could be read as "dialogue from a Fondue")
Posted by boynton at April 22, 2004 01:41 PM

search tally

Fred recently provided the formula for searching your blog fast through Google. I had forgotton the wording. eg ephemera site:

This is most useful, and better than the in-house search, where you can hunt for Flo within Flowers (and a less flowery dog you'll never find)

That's another dog to add to the about 95 that Google had just told me exist on boynton.

This may be especially good for trawling the old blogspot archives which I failed to transfer. I also failed to set up categories, but my original joke about only needing two - canines and ephemera- seems to have been validated by a quick site tally through google. Trivia (29) Ephemera (13) and Op-shop (7) would fill up the latter category and help to balance the hounds.

The use of categories is one of the lures of a new blog, but I suspect one might also employ this lightning fast 3rd party archivist in a creative way.

Comments: search tally

Thank you so much for that!
Posted by Michaela Cooper at April 24, 2004 06:54 AM

one minute movies

Scone in Sixty Seconds from the BBC One Minute Movies (via fait accompli)

The Scone one got me in, (as there have been a few scones appearing and disappearing around here lately - which always go well with Tea)

Plan to work my way through the list but another that I liked was I steal pencils

Saturday, April 17, 2004

folk 21

Folk Songs For the 21st Century (via the ultimate insult)

Comments: folk 21

folk is very funny... I never knew...
just saw 'A Mighty Wind' last night, get it on video!
Posted by nardo at April 19, 2004 04:37 PM

Actually I just saw AMW a week ago on video!
Loved it - much more than I had thought I would.

(I'm now a big fan of The Folksmen0

Was going to make it the tangent (following the
"link with a tangent" school of blogging) but thought this link could do ok without a tangent.

Posted by boynton at April 19, 2004 06:37 P

pillikin agin

I've been meaning to gather the pillikins into an MT post since I left blogspot.
It may be the thought of a new blog devoted to such sundries that's finally got me dusting off the paint shop, or a slow autumn Saturday spent inside.
Of course the serial is only as good as the reliabilty of the blogspot archives.
And one or two of the links may well be dead. Already. Such is the permanency of the medium.

Part One ·  Part Two  ·  Part Three ·  Part Four

Part Five ·   Part Six   ·  Part Stumps

Friday, April 16, 2004

de texted

The Untitled Project is a series of photographs of urban settings accompanied by a graphical text layout. The photographs have been digitally stripped of all traces of textual information

(via Making Light)

(Update. This Public Address has placed the frame back into the frameset at Matt Siber photography)

Thursday, April 15, 2004

da vinci stars

A curious horoscope for Virgos in The Age today:

Today is the birthdate of Leonardo Da Vinci, who knew how to get out of his own way so genius could pour through him unimpeded. Sometimes you have to leave things alone so what needs to happen, can.

What does this mean? I have studied the text but can't get my head around it.
Apart from the physical or metaphysical feat of knowing how to get out of his own way, Leo is an Aries?

Still puzzled, I consulted an online horoscope for Leonardo Da Vinci where these are some of the findings:

Your mind is your most valuable asset; you could be an intellectual.

Essentially, you need to be assured that everything's O.K., safe and secure. Once that's taken care of you are ready for gracious living.

You're verbal and like to talk things out. You have good mental reflexes. You can be easily bored.

Consider getting a brain machine and taking "smart drugs." Learn speed reading and typing. To avoid overstimulation, cut back on the use of artificial sweeteners and sugar. To the same end, you might take a mineral supplement and kelp tablets

For at least 5 minutes a day for 5 weeks focus your mind exclusively on the meanings of this statement, "All observation tends to be self observation

Once you develop an intellectual rapport with someone, the flirting really escalates. You can increase your powers of attraction literally through the wink of an eye.

Your personal life is unsettled. Probably you're fond of electronic devices.

See also a visual review of items seen on the web which have been associated with Leonardo da Vinci


It was a warm and sultry night at Trivia...

when we were asked the jackpot question concerning the distress call of the Titanic. When we heard the answer, CQD, there was further speculation concerning the possible acronym.
Nora suggested Come Quickly, Damnit which sounded pretty good to boynton.

The real meaning is disclosed here

You can see the morse at Wikipedia

You can hear it here

Or here
a recreation of part of one of the Titanic's distress calls sent by Marconi operator Jack Phillips (left) aboard RMS Titanic just after midnight on Monday, April 15, 1912

And you can wear it here: Titanic Wireless Signal Necklace

Comments: cqd

Hmm. A necklace to wear when you have that sinking feeling...
Posted by MG at April 19, 2004 04:52 AM

You can distress it up or down...
Posted by boynton at April 19, 2004 12:10 PM


More on the page 23 sentence 5 meme

There I was pondering the memery of it all in the comments:...

I wondered if there had been any purpose in it.
The string of random 23/5's could gather strength as they accumulate, but will probably disapear off the screen/loop soon

...when I checked into J walk to discover a similar meme-track had taken place.

I wonder what it was about this one that made me want to find the source.
Perhaps I suspected I had come in late to the party. Or that the random bit of text with the form-like instructions seems like the essential meme, the start of a chinese whisper, spidering through the web.
Tracking seems to be the only way to quantify it, a backward linear anthology. Whereas it would be nice if all these 23/5's could assemble somewhere, as the running acronyms used to gather at blogstop. As one would expect it's all in the disjunction. The magic is in the gap between two random sentences.

A tangent from a commenter at J walk places it within the greater Mystery of 23


Kevan has turned The Diary of A Nobody into a daily weblog.

Comments: Nobody

I couldn't possibly write such a thing: it would be a shameful recounting of my sloth, indolence and vices.
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 15, 2004 12:37 PM

The Diary of a Cricketer ;)
Posted by boynton at April 15, 2004 03:11 PM

Well, the Warick Todd dairies did sell well!
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 15, 2004 08:07 PM

It works very well as a blog, doesn't it?
And it reads as almost contemporary.

Such a funny book, too.
Posted by mcb at April 16, 2004 04:51 PM

Wednesday, April 14, 2004


The previous link was one in a series of similar halls and museums seen around the traps recently.

The Museum of Unworkable devices (via Sarcasmo)
(Not sure if I understand the physics, but the language is appealing. Might steal the name Buoyant Optimism for a new blog.)

Victorian Patents and Patentees Patents of Victoria (1854-1904)(via Ramage)
The ambition behind this Victorian idea would seem fairly realistic.
An Improvement in garden seats or chairs.

And there is a fascinating gallery, or rather Circus of Disembowled Plush Toys within a wonderful post on Dog Toys at Giornale Nuouvo
(wish Bronte would hurry up and disembowel her latest, although after a week the orange football would seem to have an immortal squeak)

Comments: halls

Okay that Circus is just golden.

I can have the blog up by the weekend. Drop me a line when you've settled on a name.
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 14, 2004 05:34 PM

Yes, I feel rather sorry for the Victorian gentleman and his palatable squashed meat product idea - though I do feel the "crisp toasted smell" was a somewhat over-romantic touch, and probably what cost him his patent.
Posted by dave at April 15, 2004 03:17 AM

Scott - many thanks. (Although choosing a good name might take me some time);)

Dave. Yes, it could well have been the show of buoyant optimism.
The words of the verdict are the strongest in these florid documents. "Refused" with Mr Reeves, and "Lapsed" with the chairs of Mr. McIntosh.

Another of the "lapsed" was the "Rotary Hair Brush"
(styled 'The Champion.'")

Posted by boynton at April 15, 2004 11:35 AM

Flat-pack funiture? He was ahead of his time.
Posted by Averil at April 16, 2004 04:31 AM

tech doc weird

From a Dell computer box. I believe the caption should read 'If you drop this box on a dog, don't trip over its tail'.

Hall of Technical Documentation Weirdness (via the Presurfer)

Comments: tech doc weird

This is good/strange. What is the graphic supposed to mean? I should show it to my Dad who taught graphic communication at Tech School - quite a few years ago. I am sure he would make it a fail.
Posted by phlip at April 16, 2004 03:15 PM

I have been studying it carefully and just don't get it.
His foot looks like it is submerged in office quicksand.
All I can conclude is that it is the box itself that is to be feared. It has some sort of evil power.
Perhaps it is an accident report.
The Arrow and ! are the marks of a forensic assessment.

(of course I can't really improve on Darren's original caption about the tail of a dog.)
Posted by boynton at April 17, 2004 01:18 PM

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

page 23

via Topher Tune's Times

1. Grab the nearest book.
2. Open the book to page 23.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the text of the sentence in your journal along with these instructions.

My father trusted Paul, he said Paul could build anything and fix anything.

Margaret Atwood's Surfacing was lying next to the PC.
Just as well really, because a few inches away was Enid Blyton's Happy Story Book.

Go and tell your father what you mean to do

Comments: page 23

The head and body of a man carved from mammoth ivory were found in a burial site at Brno, Czechoslovakia.
Posted by Nora at April 14, 2004 12:55 PM

Which Blyton is that, Nora?
Posted by boynton at April 14, 2004 01:18 PM

"A new series of marks should begin on each page; therefore all references have to be verified when the type is made up in pages."

— "Words Into Type" (3d ed.)
Posted by Colin at April 14, 2004 09:58 PM

I just followed the meme back to where it stopped (or started?) to find another Margaret Atwood.
Along the way there are some good bookish diversions.
I wondered if there had been any purpose in it.
The string of random 23/5's could gather strength as they accumulate, but will probably disapear off the screen/loop soon
Posted by boynton at April 15, 2004 11:53 AM

"Sam would wait until the car had passed, then five minutes more, until the unsuspecting motorist was well and truly bogged!" A Record Low by Ivor Bumbers
Posted by phlip at April 15, 2004 12:01 PM

a motoring theme, if not from the beloved book.

Not surpsisingly, the Melways IS often the closest book to hand, and I could have stretched it by calling Map 23 page 23 (in the absence of page numbering) where the 5th sentence would be
"Map Symbols see page 20"
Posted by boynton at April 15, 2004 03:08 PM

Fair point. I did actually grab the Melways to check this out at the time, but it genuinely was not the closest book to me at the time (no cheating!). The Melways I have here (ed 25) does have page numbers for all that stuff at the front prior to getting to the maps. BUT - it stops at 22 and then begins doing map numbers. The book that DID happen to be the closest at hand at the time is a history of Lake Eildon - but 23/5 happened to show up a motoring story.
Posted by phlip at April 16, 2004 03:13 PM

w@ dzt thou knw?

a scene from 12th Night translated into Txt
(via collision detection)

see also BBC Classic Texts in TXT for reader's suggestions.

Reading the last comment, I'll be checking to see if Chris Coutts' Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet is in "true L33T" or Basic l33t.

Comments: w@ dzt thou knw?

See, what we need to do is translate Romeo And Juliet into Txt for the benefit of David Beckham, who I understand is having some txt related dramas of his own...
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 14, 2004 12:25 AM

heh heh.

May be more prudent of Becks to txt bits of the Bard, and I'd be interested to see if the tabloids would publish the transcriptions.

"I know a lady in Venice would have xxxxxx barefoot
to Palestine for a xxxxx of his nether xxx."

Othello 4.3.42-3, Emilia speaking to Desdemona about Lodovico

Posted by boynton at April 14, 2004 01:38 PM

A horny chap, that old Bard... and as for that lady in Venice, someone should take her aside and point out there are other fish in the sea...

Lear to Gloucester:
"Thou rascal beadle, hold thy bloody hand!
Why dost thou lash that whore? Strip thine own back;
Thou hotly lust'st to use her in that kind
For which thou whipp'st her. The usurer hangs the cozener.
Through tatter'd clothes small vices do appear;
Robes and furr'd gowns hide all."

I'm all for dressing down, but I'm ashamed to reveal small vices.

Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 14, 2004 05:26 PM

Scott is led by the craft of sport to the art of life. Zounds, sirrah.. thine own small vices are likely to be shouted at the umpire.
Posted by David Tiley at April 15, 2004 02:22 AM

And not even referred to the third umpire- sent back to the pavillion..
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 15, 2004 12:30 PM

Monday, April 12, 2004

white templates

Blog Templates based on the Beatles White Album. (via Exclamation Mark)

I like the Blackbirds, and it's tempting to borrow the tag line of Julia Half of what I say is meaningless as a definitive blog description.

Comments: white templates

I also love the tag line, "She's not a girl who misses much" from Happiness Is A Warm Gun.
Posted by Mark at April 12, 2004 10:33 PM

Cool. To see some rejected White Album cover art from '68, go here:
Posted by at April 13, 2004 08:36 AM

I don't normally like the dark blog designs, but I definately preferred the second (darker) "Blackbird".

Something of the "Old Forest" about it.
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 13, 2004 10:51 AM

I missed it, Mark ;)

The album covers are interesting alternatives, but glad they went with the White.
(also glad that the missing verse of 'While My Guitar gently weeps' didn't make it, but good to hear an unplugged bit of that song.)

I agree about Blackbird, Scott. That's one dark design that does work. (Guess I was attracted to the "Take these broken wings" line too)
Posted by boynton at April 13, 2004 02:37 PM

easter highlights

Recorded Concert For George on a Faulty Tape.
Not sure of the diagnostics involved, but I might just take up the suggestion of turning the VCR into an alternative bed for a pet.

How to make Cream Cheese (via Rebecca Blood)
What I also need is How not to make a scene when you discover your Blue Heeler has just gobbled a whole platter of cheese while you were seeing off your visitors at the gate.

Oh well, Flo. All Things Must Pass.

Comments: easter highlights

Evil, that Blue Heeler
Posted by Averil at April 12, 2004 07:02 PM

Well, to her credit she did look a bit contrite when I found her lurking round the campfire.

I'm just not used to having such an opportunistic dog, and didn't remove it from the coffee table which was convieniently at canine nose level.
Posted by boynton at April 13, 2004 02:43 PM

I love the way dogs turn into different creatures in the presence of food. You think you have a relationship with them, with interaction and stuff, and then FOOD TAKES OVER. Treachery abounds, snarling and violence can ensue, and the beast is totally focussed.. it turns out we just amuse them while they wait for the main game.
Posted by David Tiley at April 13, 2004 04:28 PM

Exactly right.
Even gentle Abby once turned nasty and had a sudden violent stoush with Doug over a potato chip once.
It is indeed a reality check re these beasts who impersonate pets.
Posted by boynton at April 13, 2004 05:36 PM

Saturday, April 10, 2004

blog fiction

How to write a Blog Buster
Indeed, with their short daily entries, reader feedback and links to the net, blogs seem purpose-built for creating episodic stories.
(via Jerz's Literacy Weblog)

Serialised publication is also revived online at Discovering Dickens
In December 2002, Stanford’s Discovering Dickens project began with the serial release of Charles Dickens’ novel Great Expectations. By the time the project concluded in April, 2003, it had enjoyed success far beyond what we had anticipated. Interest in the project, which has attracted participants from around the country and around the world, has remained keen, and we are happy to announce our next project: Discovering Dickens 2004.

Between January 9 and April 16, 2004, Discovering Dickens will rerelease the facsimile of Dickens’ famous novel of the French Revolution, A Tale of Two Cities.

(via Follow Me here)

meanwhile we follow the dovecote

Friday, April 09, 2004

sleeping dogs

these links seem to have found me, after a week of being house-bound on stitches-watch with my old post-operative dog. And the three dogs have also found me and surround me as I blog, a solace of sleeping hound.

Walking With Leeloo at Never Neutral

Dog Fights Reading and Writing
(as a cohab of a gentle old lab and a Jack Russell I understand some of the canine mix involved)

Legend Stupid Dogs - a gallery of canine close-ups.
(via the ultimate insult)

and a strange flash game that involves shooting dogs at zombie kittens, which is oddly enjoyable in a dumb toon sort of way. (And because walking with mad Flo can sometimes bring on strange revenge fantasies.)
(via diversionz)

Comments: sleeping dogs

ah dogs..
Coco the Wonderdog has had a tumour removed from a back foot and dogwarts off her back, so now she zooms around with a blue elastic sock and a big saddle of pink freckly skin on her back. And one of her front legs somehow gives so she occasionally lies down and screams unnervingly.

I battle with her on walks, thinking she has to be kept fairly sedentary till the stitches have healed, while she charges ahead to celebrate the end of the pain I gather must have come from her tumour. Grown up Protestantism cannot be communicated to a dog, even if you understand Lacan and Derrida in Spanish and English like your dauntingly educated doglover at Never Neutral..

lovely post, as usual.
Posted by David Tiley at April 9, 2004 06:03 PM

all the best for Coco in her post-operative zoom.
Amazing how they take the socks and saddles and e.collars in their stride.
The worst time was when I bound up Doug's stitched foot with a rubber glove (as you do) that stretched out with a squelch on each step. This drew much laughter from kids as we passed them, but we walked on regardless, waterproof, foolproof.
Posted by boynton at April 10, 2004 12:40 PM

Wednesday, April 07, 2004


so sunny here today it's the perfect day for a spin in a datsun

(Datsun Japanese Domestic Sales Literature via things)

Comments: sunny

It's true - they made some cute little cars.
Posted by David Tiley at April 7, 2004 11:30 PM

catty2 on blogging2

Chatting with Catty the chatbot about blogging and writing, as you do.

you> is blogging good for writing?
catty2> monday morning okay no time for writing today but here are some links you may enjoy

you> is blogging good for writing?
catty2> whats good for the gander is good for the goose

you> what is good for the goose?
catty2> the next step is for the individual to see a physician

Catty via Sarcasmo

Comments: catty2 on blogging2

Catty bot said:"...cognitive restructuring simply put this means changing the way you think". Is this my new guru?
Posted by Nora at April 7, 2004 10:37 PM

It seems like there are no stars the branches dont pierce. At the web rating places it seems like everywhere else. Foots tap tap tapping all over wants to get me out tonight but everyones working it seems like. Im going out tonight with dana and were going to good old sanjays house. As if were going to choose them after the threats to remove social security :) Even though we both wondered how id accumulated so much crap and how we were going to get it all in the car ;) This makes me highly uncomfortable even though they dont mention anything. I just feel like i know at least evidenciarily whats going on with alpha female i dont have a crush on her and this makes me a special case in her world ;-) Maybe i just feel compelled to inform people of the words i receive. Maybe i just wanted a few hours with someone who wasnt so damn argumentative :-(

(My conversation with Catty! I especially like the first and last sentences)
Posted by Averil at April 8, 2004 08:02 AM

Chatting with Catty again...
"Please don’t let the fact that I am presently in jail deter or scare you away from a potentially good friendship? Well the reason I haven’t been in touch is because there was a death in my family."
Posted by Nora at April 8, 2004 12:41 PM

Fascinating haul from a google-trawl.
I like :) the way the emoticons punctuate :-(
the text, Averil. ;)

and yes Nora, I think Catty may be as good as any guru, not to mention life-coach, Averil.
boynton may turn to Aunty Catty's advice on men for help with the trials and tribulations of her love life from now on ;)
Posted by boynton at April 8, 2004 01:00 PM

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

on blogging

As a religious practice, blogging acquired the same status as begging. Many theories have been offered to explain the phenomenon. It has been interpreted as a beating out of evil spirits, as beautification, and even - erroneously - as buffoonery

Ela Kotkowska On Blogging
( from Morio poetry Journal via Okir)

Pedro Ángel Palou, a member of the Crack Generation, is a professed skeptic. "Alfonso Reyes would have called them (Web logs) an ancillary genre, a dependent form of the literary."
Nevertheless, the author of With Death in His Fists recognizes Web logs' potential for literary reflection and creation: "A generation of writers will have their sketchbooks read before they produce a finished work."

Mexico: The Web Log as Literary Genre Translated from Erika P. Buzio's article in Mural, A new form of writing found in Web logs
(via wood s lot)

Someone please tell me, on which page of the rule book does it say that you can't write a novel, have a life, and keep a weblog, all at the same time?"

(Whiskey River via Fait accompli)

Comments: on blogging

As a religious practice blogging as beatification?
Posted by Nora at April 7, 2004 12:14 AM

A good question from Whiskey River. Cory Doctorow manages it, but then he is a young evil genius. I am afraid blogging takes away from my "serious" writing, but since nobody has any money to pay me for that these days, I say what the hell.

Thank you for the blogback, by the way!
Posted by Colin at April 7, 2004 11:57 AM

Nora: self-beatification. s'aint me.

Colin: self-editing
is one of the main appeals of self-publishing. It's a way to exercise the voice that may have become less bold after the neccessary evils of editing, writing to a brief, and collaborative revisions (dramaturgy) elsewhere...
Nevertheless, WR's question is one that surfaces daily.
I think it's the second area that may suffer the most with this procrastination machine ;)

Much food for thought in the article and links.
Posted by boynton at April 7, 2004 01:27 PM

aint no rules.
exercise and exorcism..
how else in our particular world do we do things for ourselves?
Posted by David Tiley at April 7, 2004 11:28 PM

Exercise and Exorcism.

Excellent. E&E should soon take its place beside R&R in the ABC of blogging.
Tempted to pinch this as a new 'description' for boynton. ;)

Posted by boynton at April 8, 2004 01:09 PM


Doctor Unheimlich has diagnosed me with
Miss boynton's Lurgy
Cause:peer pressure
Symptoms:tooth loss, talking like a pirate, gastrointestinal bleeding, facial paralysis
Cure:pass it on to someone else within seven days
Enter your name, for your own diagnosis:

via as above

Comments: unheimlich

Good lord- talking like a pirate?
Posted by Scott Wickstein at April 6, 2004 01:00 AM

My pirate name apparently...

"if ye'll give me some grog, I'll sing ye a song"

Posted by Captain Betsy Bonnet at April 6, 2004 01:08 AM

whatever I have it caused by excessive consumption of burgers AND too much sleep. As far as I'm concerned you can never have too much sleep.
Posted by Averil at April 6, 2004 05:31 AM

I agree.
And watch you don't pass whatever you have onto Ross. His burger consumption levels are already high enough ;)
Posted by boynton at April 6, 2004 02:09 PM

Congratulations! You are suffering from
Nora bone's Syndrome.
Cause: poor dental hygiene
Symptoms: regurgitation, embarrassing noises, diarrhoea, dry eyes
Cure: sleep
Posted by Nora at April 6, 2004 02:54 PM

Dr U would seem to be on the money there, Nora.
Posted by boynton at April 6, 2004 03:01 PM

Monday, April 05, 2004

o beermat

boynton has been bombing out at the flipping beermat game and was told
move outside please
you caught 0 beermat in 30 secs

Probably safer to stick to Spots
(haven't progressed beyond level one here either but at least the soundtrack is smooth)

Two of the flash games in this collection (via Sarcasmo)

Sunday, April 04, 2004


I was surprised that the Australian flag fell over the line by five points didn't Fail in this The World's Flags Given letter ratings rated (via Incoming signals)

But another flag to score a C was Samoa, which seems silmilar to some of the variations on the southern cross sans "colonial rubbish" proposed by Ausflag.

(I like the Eureka flag myself)

Comments: flags

Yes, I like the Eureka flag too. There's something subliminally reassuring about it.
Posted by Mike Jericho at April 5, 2004 08:14 AM

some funny comments (lions rolling cigarettes, hawk sitting on a toilet.. thought that was a chicken in a basket, myself..)

but off the money in many places.. Brazil's flag is a cracker!

and I'm partial to a parrot on a pole (or even a bird of paradise, or an eagle grappling with a snake on a cactus)

our mob: the Torres Strait Islander flag captures the 'brown eye' neatly; the Aboriginal flag is easily the strongest design-wise, altho' I like the NT state flag too..

This Brendan Jones flag works for me...

also this derivation:
Posted by nardo at April 5, 2004 02:47 PM

I also like this one:
Posted by nardo at April 5, 2004 02:51 PM

I had to include a link to the Torres Strait flag after that intriguing (and very apt)description:

The problem with many of the variants is the logo look. And I'm with the Frequent:
"I don't want a green and gold flag - nor a flag with animals on it"
However, the Eureka flag question is dismissed on this page too:
"It could never be a suitable unifying national symbol."
If this is true, it's a shame, because I find its 'authenticity' reassuring, and its graphic simplicity.
Maybe the Southern Cross is the subliminal bit, in which case I could settle for this:
Posted by boynton at April 5, 2004 05:47 PM

Just love that flag site, was chuckling away in the front room watching snooker as the rest of the den haag household are doing.
Posted by Averil at April 6, 2004 05:27 AM

I see the Netherlands gets a B.

I guess this site would have come in handy for Trivia, once upon a time.
Posted by boynton at April 6, 2004 02:05 PM

but Carson's phraseology within poems ionic breeze remains her own: "Rotate the husband and designer handbag expose a hidden side," she urges early coach handbag on
Posted by Purse at May 5, 2004 07:56 AM

Friday, April 02, 2004


My dog, Doug, is into his third day of convalescence.

We hear his conical collar as comical advance guard, bumping into doors, dogs, walls. A plastic skiffing noise as he loudly scents along the ground.

He gave Bronte a shock as her small head was suddenly enclosed by his coned nose hunting down a bit of biscuit

He looks more like a fifties space dog than a van dyck nobleman.

Collar consciousness follows me around, even down to the op shop, where over the counter I look up to see that famous print of a ruffled nobleman staring back at me. He was $25. I leave him to it.

Maybe I'm turning into this woman.

Thursday, April 01, 2004

martial manuals

When Adversarius wants to throw a jar or some such at you, advance towards him with your arms crosswise, covering your head, as in N° 9.


Johann Georg Passchen's 1659 wrestling & self defense text, Vollstandiges Ring-Buch.

One of many manuals at The Association for Renaissance Martial Arts
The Armarium Online Historical Fencing Manuals & Texts

See also Talhoffers fencing book Talhoffers Fechtbuch aus dem Jahre 1467

XIV Fight Between a Man and Wife

The beginning stance in which the man and wife shall fight each other. – The woman is in the open stance and means to strike and has a stone in the veil weighing four or five pounds. – Thus, he stands in the pit up to the waist and his club is as long as her veil is from her hand

(a marital martial routine which seems to end like this:)

She has him in a hold by the throat and by his equipment and means to pull him from the pit.