This is my blog log of things I think about, want to write about, but haven't had the time or place to do much with it all. I'm all about getting discussions going through comments/replies, and gettin' all deep and shiznit. Sometimes I just feel like posting a question, other times I gotta just let it all out and ramble... hopefully I'm not alone with it all.

Sunday, June 26, 2005


You're on Candid Camera!! Posted by Hello

Tucker Max

For those of you who are new to Tucker Max, well, beware... he's a dick, an asshole, has no respect for most anyone,and writes exceptionally well, and has some funny ass motherfucking stories!! So I've read many of them, and thought if I was going to pass the word along to others who might be bored enough to read his stuff, I should give a good story to start with. That's a hard thing to do since I've thoroughly enjoyed most every story of his I've read. The one below is about his first anal sex experience, and it's not too long (10-15 minutes or less...?), so I thought it'd be a decent one to open things up with. If you like it, I recommend the MTV story too, among most every other one he's written, but ther MTV one explains a lot, even though its like a half hour to an hour's read (for me). Anyway, do enjoy, and if boredom plagues you often, his stories are a great source of entertainment. Read on...

http://www.tuckermax.com/tuckertriesbuttsex.html

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Topic #3.... Thinking Fungus?

Yup, so read the last couple posts to get the background to this topic separation. So, in the aforementioned thread, this third (and final, for my comments) topic came about: those smart little fungi! For this I'm going to do a little he-said/she-said to keep everything in context, so it might get a little long... but please enjoy and continue the discussion! Oh yeah, and this sprouted from the AI topic (couple posts below):

Me: And in response to the "fungus thinking" idea, you have to agree upon the definition of thought, which includes the medium(s) throught which thought exists, as well as the manner through which thought is conducted.

Leadfoot: Mushrooms deffinitely think. Their mycellial bodies are filled with neurotransmitters, and their bodies extend for miles beneath the soil. Even if you assume (wrongly in my mind, but let's play with this) that one mushroom cell has so much more to do than just think, and so is not a very effective neuron, with some 100x the mass and density of interconnections of cells than the human brain, that still adds up to quite a high intelligence.
Now, this would not be intelligence like yours and mine, being based on psilocybin (those who have taken mushrooms in their time may have some inkling of the differences between serotonin and psilocybin). But intelligence it is.

Me: That a mushroom and/or fungus has a sensory/perception system is one thing, but to think is another. Again, you have to define what a thought is, and to most a thought must have content. If you would like to delve into exactly what kind of content a fungus would transmit as a thought, I'd love to hear it, seeing as they have no verbal language to organize thoughts with, and therefore no medium by which to communicate between seperate bodies and share "content" and knowledge. I can bend a little and accept that maybe one mushroom can feel the physical conditions of another mushroom, but that they discuss the meaning of life I'll have to disagree with. So I really have a hard time accepting them having "intelligence", because even if they had/have a memory to base experience and therefore knowledge on, they have a very very limited range of experiences to diversify their "thoughts" with. And I've taken mushrooms many many times, so I know what you are trying to refer to, but I don't buy it.

SIDE TOPIC on mushrooms, in case anyone wants to discuss this too:

Leadfoot: Also an interesting fact: Mushroom spores, carried by the winds of a storm, can reach up to and out of the earth's atmosphere. And the spores (the mushroom's "seeds") can survive a trip through near vacuum and radiation of 500x the levels of the Van Alen belt and still land back on Earth and germinate.
Now, if they can do this, what's stopping these spores from reaching other planets? I say they're already heading out from Earth. Someday they might find a suitable home, hunker down, and give a whole different species of intelligent life something to trip on. Wouldn't it be funny to meet an alien species, and immediately have them offer you a mushroom?
I think it'd be funny, anyhow.

Me: And you're right, the mushroom spore is really an amazing thing. No argument there. Although it isn't a likely scenerio that a spore would successfully travel to another planet that could actually support its life. God knows they can be very finnicky fruits as is, that are pretty picky about where and how they grow.

END OF POST(S)

So please continue the discussion(s)!

Topic #2.... China and our future...

The follow up to the last post is the second topic covered... for the background read the last post below. So, in the midst of another person's post was this: "With so much industrialization of third world countries and values being lost, sin overwhelming, and people do horrible things I think by 2012 our world will be in a great unbalance to good. With the imperialism of the U.S. degrading countries where honor and respect were highest of the land these days have been replaced by greed, pride, and hate."

The mention of 2012 is a reference to the end of the Matan Calendar, part of the backbone of a lot of the discussion in that whole thread - the "end" is coming, or is it? So in response to that I wrote this below... and again, I rambled... and please, of course, comment:

You touch upon an interesting point, but I wanna veer off a little. There's the Mayan calendar and also the Hopi Indian [prophecy] both ending about that time, along with other such predictions and whatnot, and I don't see an end of the human species or anything like that. But in relation to what you said, I think there will be a big political power change in the world, the wheels of which are theoretically already set in motion. The change I believe will come will be the downfall of the Western powers, and the rise of the Eastern powers, namely China. Their economic situation is giving rise to the purchases of US entities in many areas: computers, oil, metal, etc... all the things needed to be self sufficient as a world superpower, and they are buying these things at an exponential rate (by year) because of the inflated value of their money against the rest of the world. It's completely feasible that in 6-7 years China will surpass every other country in monetary and political power in the world. What comes with such a change is a change in the dominating world views. Right now the Western view dominates, which is very different from most Eastern views, and in some ways could be considered a catostrophic change to this world, albeit one I, personally, would/will not fear. Afterall Taoism is from Chinese thought. This 'War on the World' that Bush has started is doing a few things to help this future change by weakening US ally support and at the same time depleting US funds and therefore monetary power. In other words the US is losing its bargaining power with the rest of the world. England is a joke as a world power, and they will crumble under the US, along with some other countries that are directly tied into socio-cultural and moetary ties with the heads of this Western culture and society. And yes, this is the "end of the world" for Christianity, but not for everything else. Sinners repent? How about go learn chinese and prepair for a re-education. And this is not like the US will die, and everyone will move to China, and the English language will cease to exist, or anything like that, it's just a major switch of cultural power, and with it I believe a lot of change on the emphasis on the dominating thoughts and ways of thinking. Why did the calendar end? They didn't know what China was, or "the West" for that matter, so it would be like looking into a crystal ball and seeing fog, albeit fog that was diluted with lightning and "torment". In a way, I can't wait for the day when Christians must actually learn what fear is... the fear of being treated like a true minority.

END OF POST

So an odd follow up to this is that, while I arrived at this little "apocalyptic" conclusion to our future in like October or November, I've never heard anyone else really say the same thing, or relay the same message... until today. Today was my first class of summer quarter in my Modern China class, and the professor basically said the same prediction for the same general reasons, but he gave a time frame of it happening in 10-15 years, and he never mentioned the Mayan Calendar or Hopi Prophecy. I'll tell ya, that was a trip to hear him say all that on the first day of class, especially since I only posted that thing above the night before! The only other time I've put that whole prediction into printed words was on the Yahoo! Mariners message board in like November. Yeah, that was weird... Anyway, please comment if you feel the need...

Dum da dum dum DUMB!!!

Yeah, so this too was from the MySpace Taoism group message board (we get into some fun topics and discussions at time).

The REAL Topic: well, for a background, an obvious Christian started the thread by posting a bunch of apocalyptic/millenial quotes from the Bible... and finsihed off with:
"These signs are our evidence worldwide, and are increasing both in frequency and intensity.

REPENT SINNERS"

So you can imagine the flurry of responses from this board... within the discussion we hit some other topics. The first I commented on was about AI and machines/computers having souls... I posted in response to this: "I disagree that machines don't have souls; I think [some other guy's] definition of a soul is too human. To me soul is the everlasting conscious, and I think all matter to be a part of it, ergo machines have the same soul as everything else."

Here's my response, and please, do discuss if you have anything to comment about:

But your argument has a flaw, AI is a human construct, and an attempt at making a machine as human as possible. But you can't make a machine into a human, or you no longer have a machine. AI has the limits set by the human condition and our lack of knowledge of ourselves and the honest workings of our brain. Our brain is way too complex for us to ever be able to duplicate it without the use of biological matter and cells, in which case we are moving towards actually being a human and not an artificial machine.

SO! This soul you speak of will die with the human race when it dies (and this isn't a matter of "if", but when, and how, which are totally different topics), because the soul, like everything we percieve, is a human construct. We can imagine a time when we can teach chimps to think and reason like us, and maybe we can teach them about what a soul is, but then they will have their own interpretation of the information we provide, and will see things in a chimps way, not a humans way, and therefore we can't really expect them to even know what we know a soul to be (and the soul itself is a personal opinion as to what it is). Actually, on that note, because there is not one single definition of the soul that everyone can/will agree on, it's more proof that the soul is a human construct, or simply an assumption or belief, but not a cold hard fact that can be shown and proven and explained so that no one doubts its existence and manner/medium of existence. As such the human soul will die with the species and the language that has created and cared for it (in case there is an evolution of the species that maintains the language and knowledge base). Ok, I'm getting too far into this...

END OF POST

Now, the next post on this blog is the next topic we covered, which is more along the lines of apocalyptic thought...

On Taoism and Reincarnation

Question (taken from the MySpace Taoism group discussion board): What do people think is the relationship between reincarnation and the Tao?

My answer: As was said, you believe it if you want to, and don't if you don't. I don't believe in reincarnation. I believe this body is what we have to show for our life and our "soul". That being said I don't really believe in a soul either, at least not beyond or detached/detachable from this body. So, IMO, when the body dies, everything else we are dies with it, except the memories people have of us. As for Taoism and reincarnation, it all depends on who you ask. If you ask me you'll get a "no", only because I see Taoism as a socio-political ideology and philosophy and medium by which we can live our life and survive to the best of our abilities in this life. Lao-tzu, the "originator", wasn't saying these things for the mystical purposes, but the socio-political purposes. Chuang-tzu took that line of thought, however, and made it mystical and into more of a religion than a philosophy. If you feel like you need the mystical and more "religious" elements of Taoism, then walk that road. But I feel more comfortable with the more original and stripped down version, which doesn't include reincarnation. Just my 2 cents tho...

And also, realize that philosophers have made some changes or evolutions in the Taoist thought over the centuries, so you can probably find whatever you're looking for if you look hard enough... but then I've always been the type to take what makes sense to me, and what I like, about any and all religions to make my own world view. I recommend others do the same... you'll be happier if you believe in only what makes sense to you, and not what a book says you should believe.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Huh...

http://quizfarm.com/test.php?q_id=10907

So I got some interesting results... and I really don't know what to say. Can't say it's wrong or right, but that list/order is pretty damn true. I have to do my research to find out what Satanism really is, in essence, and until then I'll just nod and smile. Oh yeah, 0% for Hinduism?? I was raised in a freaking Hindu household my whole life!! Not even 1%???

"You scored as Satanism. Your beliefs most closely resemble those of Satanism! Before you scream, do a bit of research on it. To be a Satanist, you don't actually have to believe in Satan. Satanism generally focuses upon the spiritual advancement of the self, rather than upon submission to a deity or a set of moral codes. Do some research if you immediately think of the satanic cult stereotype. Your beliefs may also resemble those of earth-based religions such as paganism.

Satanism 71%

Atheism 58%

Buddhism 50%

Islam 50%

Paganism 50%

Agnosticism 50%

Judaism 29%

Christianity 29%

Hinduism 0%

Sunday, June 05, 2005

D'oh!

So what does one hand clapping sound like in the middle of the woods, if there is no one there to hear it?

And I quote: "It sounds like something for me to POOP on!!"
-Triumpth the Insult Comic Dog

But yes, I've been wondering, what is the value of "good"? Is this a culturally relative thing that each society defines? Or is this a personal opinion and judgement? What is the value of doing something good, if no one else notices it? I mean either people recognize it as good, or they don't. Sometimes I feel like what I do at times has no value to anyone else because I see its value down the road, and no one else recognizes that "down the road" it will be worthy. Like when I wrecked the Podge (Peter+Dodge=Podge)... my parents were mad at me, but then when they realized that I just made them money from the insurance company (there was no way in hell we could have sold it for what they paid us), they were actually somewhat pleased, especially since the car was still very drivable. I'm not saying I did that on purpose or anything, but it's an example of something having value at the time of occurance, but no one really knowing it until much later.

This all comes up because I had a stoned discussion the other day about it. My friend and I were just talking about how sometimes we feel like no one understands us, or why we do things (which was probably a lot of the weed talking), and it stemmed from the general topic of my last post, the whole hip hop documentary thing. I'll let him blog his own thoughts and ramblings, but mine were somewhat based upon the fact that more than half the people I tell about this wonder why I would 1) be willing to do this kind of stuff for free, and 2) do it for free while at the same time put myself in dangers way on occasion (I've already seen a few guns in my filming adventures). Valid questions. Not that I'm trying to piss off any thugs or anything, on the contrary, so far, they've seen me as somewhat as a catalyst to their efforts in the hip hop industry. So if anything they are on my side, or rather, I'm on their side. Actually, that right there kind of touches on this whole question at hand...

So, for all these artists that I plan to work with, they see my efforts as a means for their success, and no doubt that is indeed the case. So friends of mine ask why I would do this for free when they are the only ones benefitting from it? And this is what confuses them: I tell them that I do it because I want those artists to succeed. Huh? I work for free so someone else can succeed? Am I a moron? Well, to be blunt, this is my reasoning... I'm fed up with Seattle being on the hip hop map because of Sir Mix-A-Lot, and basically only because of him. There are a few other guys who have made a ripple, but never a wave. I go to shows here on occasion and see what Seattle has to offer in the underground scene here, and it's good. It's varied, and everyone has their biases, but the talent exists and doesn't get recognized like it should. A lot of these cats do what it takes to get the respect in the industry, but because they live in Seattle they never see that respect actually shown to their music. I want to change that. I want Seattle to be on the hip hop map in a major way. Maybe I won't see any money for it, if I play any kind of part in it in the first place, but I don't care. Just changing the way Seattle hip hop artists are treated and respected in this country would be enough for me. Not to mention that it only takes one of those artists to remember my efforts and give me my due respect for what I did for them. And anyone that knows me knows that I care a lot about respect. You give it, you get it, and without it you can't do shit. Whatever you can do without it doesn't mean shit though, because no one else cares that you've done anything. Blah blah blah (that 'respect' topic will come in another post, some day...). But in a way, since hip hop is one of my musical passions, in a analytical/observer kind of way, I kind of see this whole thing as my community service. My mom does her "community service" by way of her temple, and this whole project to bring a hindu nun to this country... it's her passion, it will benefit many others, and she does it for the love of what will come in the future. And that's basically why I'm doing this. Oh yeah, and guns don't bother me, so long as they aren't pointed at me; they can flash their guns all day for all I care.

Anyway, this local underground hip hop documentary thing is in the works, and it's gonna happen. My other two group partners from the original project are locked in to do this to the end, and we have a goal of a finished, professional/semi-professional quality documentary that we can give to PBS or KCTS to show in the Seattle area, at a minimum. And seeing as the first project was heavily weighted towards being anti-93.3 KUBE, I would expect the same from the project at large... and I would LOVE to give KUBE a copy to watch and think about. If they alone changed for the better, and started supporting the local artists, I would feel like I had succeeded.

Anyway, I guess this is my one handed clap, and for a lot of people it seems like there is no sound... but the way I see it, this could make a huge noise, just maybe it's on another frequency that not everyone can perceive... yet.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

i am a jelly doughnut

i am a jelly doughnut

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Nothing too philosophical...

But it was an interesting day nonetheless...

So I have this visual ethnography class at UWB that requires us to get in small groups and create some kind of visual ethnography on a specific culture/sub-culture that we can locally access. So, being the hip hop head that I like to think I am, I made a push for an ethnography on local hip hop artists in the Seattle area. Believe it or not, it was last on the list of APPROVED topics, so it grew wings and took flight. Unfortunately we encountered a head wind, so we didn't get too far for a while. Actually, we theoretically started this like a month and a half ago, but didn't start any filming (it's a video ethnography) until a couple weeks ago, and didn't even get our first interview done until last Thursday (the 26th), and this is due in like 14 hours. Luckily our professor knows what troubles we've been falling subject to, so only having two interviews will be ok (it's the experience that counts!). The first interview was with a local producer/MC, Odeezie (yes, that is the name he likes to go by), and it went very well. He was one of my main contacts, and he's been pretty helpful in the last three weeks, so I expected things would go well. Then we were supposed to interview two or three other MC's on Friday... yeah, that didn't happen. Nope, not Saturday either. And... not Sunday either. (Basically, I was going solo all those days with one group member in Texas for his daughter's high school graduation, and the other says he lost my cell number, and I had no way to get a hold of him.)

So Monday and grabbed my balls, threw 'em over my shoulder, and decided I would have to do this by myself (which has been the story of this project). So I call up Don P, a local MC/producer in Rainier Beach... down in the ghetto, to be more descriptive of his area. He says he's willing and able to do the interview, even though it was a decent Memorial BBQ-day, and I head down South...

After getting lost (a little), I finally made it to the Safeway to meet him. I waited in that parking lot for like 20 minutes, watching all these cars drive in, drive through, and drive out, playing the guessing game of which car would be his, and what kind of car will he drive. I knew he was kind of the bling-bling type (gold teeth anyone?), so I was imagining an SUV on dubs, a mid to late 90's Lexus, or maybe a good ol' hooptie. Nope. Guess what he rolls? It was a (and this is for Pete and Miranda) 240DL. Volvo baby!

Nonetheless, we meet, drive up to a park where he's meeting some friends, and we procede to get loose... drinking Mickeys, smoking blunts like they grew on trees (the man never was without a blunt in his hand), and filming damn near everything that was happenin. That included drug deals, and plenty of illegal activity all on film... and he liked it. Ok, it makes for some raw and rare footage, probably unlike anyone else's group projects in the class.

So we kick it for a bit, then decide to part ways with the group of 15 or so thugs (ask me for the footage sometime...), and head over to his friend's flat to do the more legit interview (the park was to get a feel for his environment). We get there, and I guess his friend had peaced out. It happens. So we decide we'll just roll around in a car and get some hand-held camera footage of him in his hood... in my car... while I'm in the back seat... and his girlfriend is driving (MY car). It's cool; no problems from it, and I got some good footage. Then we decide roll up to MLK (damn near 3010, for those who know), and kick it at his... well, it was kind of an older father figure type guy... not a dad, not an uncle, not an older brother, but family... but we kick it there so I can charge my camera battery. Don P is smokin a blunt out back, and he starts gettin deep in his thoughts, so I turn the camera onto him... the interview is happening now (while he's high of course). Again, I got some really good footage. So we decide to roll back down south (it's been like 4 hours by now - not your average interview...). A little drinkin while drivin, cuz you know, that's how we roll down in the SEA (no, that's not how I talk now)... smokin some blunts, bumpin Don P's beats, and the guy does a few minutes of freestylin for fun... nothin special, but the guy has talent. So we drop his girl off, and continue to try and meet up with Mioshi, a.k.a. Black Sapphire, who was my hopeful female MC to interview. On the way to her place Don P gets back into that freestyle mode and just goes off! I kid you not, for like 20 minutes straight he was spittin to his beats non-stop, and that shit was tight! Changed up styles, tone of voice, delivery, you name it, he did it, and damn near perfectly. Then I figured out that this guy is legit. He's not a wannabe MC, or a wannabe producer (all his beats were very good, to be honest, and his recorded cuts were pretty damn good too)... but this guy has solid talent that is ready to make it big. If I could have recorded that whole freestyle, well, I just wish I had it on tape. And not to mention he has gold teeth... well, gold caps, but they cover six teeth.

Anyway, we go to Mioshi's, and she's now apparently "busy"; what that actually entailed, I don't know, but the interview was not to be. So we decide to head to Skyway Park bowling alley, where he kicks it a lot (in the bar). In the bar we meet up with a few of his old friends (from like 6th grade and high school, and he's 31), and the three kind of rule this place... they're like the three kings... all somewhat big time drug dealers. They talk about how they need to get the other dealers on their level to hold out from their sources for a couple weeks to drive the prices down (telling them they just aren't selling a lot), and likewise raise their selling prices (telling their buyers that it's just dried up)... shit like that... all on film. Oh yeah, I'm the only white guy in the bar, nonetheless I'm standing/sitting there filming these guys... but by being with them I was already accepted, which was good. The four of us go for a drive (in my car) to smoke some MORE blunts (this had to be like numbers 25-30 by this point in the night, but I held out and only smoked on like 3 of them throughout the day). Again, they get into some heavy talking, which unfortunately was not on film (just that "deep" stoned-talk). Then we head back and drop those guys off. Don P is about ready to call up another girl for a night cap, so we cruise back to "the village" where we started the whole driving escapade, where his car was at. That was the end of the night.

Here's the thing: Odeezie now wants me to help him film part of his music video this summer, and Don P wants me to do solo work filming a full length DVD on him. To be honest, if he paid for the tapes, I'd probably do all the filming and editing for free, but he says he wants to pay me for it. Whatever... I know it wouldn't be too smart to expect much out of the deal, but if he wants to pay me, that's cool. Either way, it will be an experience...

So the kicker to all of this is that I'm thinking about broadening this horizon of filming local hip hop artists... when I took live footage at the Rainbow (on 45th) there were MCs just drooling to get on film. Actually, when I met Don P at the park, at the beginning of that whole adventure, all his friends were loving the camera and wouldn't leave "center stage", flashing their bling and just gettin all crazy. The point being, this is a niche market that hasn't been tapped in any way, and I now have the means to do it (new computer and all). Who knows what the future holds, but if Don P ever made it big, I'd be the guy saying "yeah, that first old video of him, that was all my work...", and that'd be cool with me. I have the connections, and the physical means to do it... now it's just gotta be done.

In other news from the area, I'm heavily considering moving to Australia in February for two years of post-grad work for my masters degree in psychology :) Did I mention that Aussie girls have been said to love American guys??? It would probably replace my previously planned trip to India, but I think I'll deal with it...