Sunday, July 15, 2007

My Body and the Real World

So after it all, I guess I can understand how after biking 25 miles hard with a crash in the middle[1], stopping for a few hours to hang out and eat Real Food, getting back on the road for another pretty hard 25 to get home (including a stop in Devon for some random small groceries), and then eating lots of carbs'n'protein and drinking lots of water, my body might decide that it wants sleep now and won't take no for an answer. It had a lot of stuff to take care of without consciousness throwing it any more crap... digestion, healing of wounds, replenishing muscles (they've worked a lot the last 3 days).

The intense sleep rush still felt pretty crazy, though. Now that's over and I'll probably be up for a really long time. Grr.

[1]Out-of-use train tracks are always a hazard when you're on a road bike. You try to hit them at as steep an angle as possible. I was setting up to do this, but there was a pothole along the tracks, and I noticed it too late to avoid it. When my front wheel hit the pothole it turned itself slightly to the right (the direction of the tracks) and my wheel got caught in the groove next to the rail. At this point my wheel was pointed in a very different direction from my momentum. There was not much to do besides try not to injure myself on the fall.

The cuts I wound up with were not nearly as bad-ass as the ones I got falling on that rock face in Big Sur. Which is nice. Handlebars are bent up a bit. I think I've had pretty good luck with crashes.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Two Industries

In Neal Stephenson's The Diamond Age I think Madame Ping says something along the lines of, "There are two industries: stuff and entertainment." Well.
Stuff
Make things for people so that they don't have to make them or understand them. Contribute to the specialization of people and the complexity of their lives. Work towards the technological singularity.
Entertainment
Trick people's senses so they can be excited in their mechanized lives. Manipulate their emotions. Glorify invented beliefs.

Fuck industry.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

"And as she read I laid my head / and I can't tell which head"

While I've been struggling with the Mountain Goats the way the faithful struggle with Bible verses they don't like I've been listening to Mermaid Avenue, on which Billy Bragg and Wilco put their own music to old found Woody Guthrie lyrics. It is a terrific album. In particular, Walt Whitman's Niece (the song from which I pulled this post's title) is a riot of a song. If Billy Bragg is this good when he writes his own lyrics I'll have to find more of his stuff.

Yesterday for the Fourth I went up to Evanston to meet up with some Fora crazies and watch professional pyrotechnicians create spectacular entropy over Lake Michigan. There was a concert band playing before the fireworks. It was the Palatine Concert Band. Directed by none other than Ron Polancich, former band director of star clarinettist Al Dimond. Great to get out of the house.

I think I'm ready to turn it around. I don't care if I get it completely right, I just need to get it a little different from now.