Saturday, December 07, 2002

Boynton spent the morning surfing but will hold back on the links until they set. She recently found a wonderful blog Fragments - from Floyd "Country life written in words and images from Floyd County, Virginia". A bonus is the presence of a black labrador, Buster. From the archives here is a beautifully written tale featuring another great great lab.

Friday, December 06, 2002

problem blogging... mcb keeps the essential question going which she often explores graphically with the questioning ant (why blog) and links to this post. Indeed, the curse of blogtime is something that Boynton is learning to deal with. If one goes down this track: " a committed infovore, I need to eat roughly six times my weight in information every day or my brain starts to starve and atrophy"...the monster of blogtime starts to consume not only book time but other recreational pursuits.
(Of course sites like boing boing raise the bar enough to motivate infovores anon.) Procrastinations observes the time gap involved in all this global reading . Meanwhile we might wonder who has time to follow all the links on the hundreds of sites in an ever-expanding blogrolling... blogosphere . One has to be increasingly discerning or perhaps totally random to cope.
More verse...The Presurfer posted a great poetry site. Boynton had a ramble around the links and found this site . Among many good things there are a couple of wonderful flash poems The Braille of Rain and Jellyfish Child. When it's done this well, poetry and the web seem made for each other: a screenful of substance that preserves (enhances?) the one-on-one relationship of reader and text. This is often lacking in formal readings according to this New York Times article (via aldaily) which claims that the poet's own rendering can interfere with what you hear in your head, that infinitely nuanced thing Wallace Stevens called ''the poem of the mind,'' audible only in ''the delicatest ear of the mind.'' .
and lo, a whole antholgy of random poem generator machinery is embedded into a poem at bluejoh

Thursday, December 05, 2002

Writerly... Some how to articles of the practical/earnest variety(via Microcontent) for journos but applicable to other forms. On loneliness, narrative thinking, and good tips (carry 2 notebooks).
Boynton has often baulked at the "how to's" but she endorses this
and for a good automated poem go here and click on the "o" in "work". (of course everything else there is worth looking at too)

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

Boynton got $lugged bad for data overkill during November which may cause a slight rethink. Rethinking the linking anyway – and the costs of sourcing. Just when she stumbled upon an inspiring example of a kind of found hypertext. (There was an earlier example of this imaginative form at bluejoh)

When we saw this (via The Presurfer) Boynton thought of a scene in the novel Hide and Seek by Dennis Potter:
Aged seven, he had examined the bottle of Camp Coffee on the kitchen table, mentally trying to hold a label against a label, his small white face trying too hard to understand etermity…
Words almost out of control, the boy was delving down into the scarcely discernible third and indecipherable fourth layer before his mother picked up the remaining cup and saucer and clanked them together in the washing-up bowl...

The scene builds until “Trapped in halls of mirror, tunnels of word he started to scream. His screaming continued until she hit him in panic" And we remembered the famous Droste effect

‘It goes on and on,’ Daniel raised his voice trying to call her back.’It goes on and on for ever and ever and ever’
“It’s only a bloody picture!’

More on Droste and Escher here

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

When Mnemonics fail... Boynton received an email from one of the trivia conquering theatrebods who claimed his only contribution had been
"to recite the school chemistry mnemonic "Hey Hello Little Bertie Brown Counting Nuts On Friday" in an attempt at determining the tenth element of the Periodic Table. Needless to say the mnemonic was deficient by one. My position as science consultant was ruined!"

While we don't believe this for a second, Boynton has been there, stumbling over fragments of Lear-like couplets, racing to recall these displaced sub-sub literary scraps. Perhaps the trouble was that our "mnemonic enhancers become too complex or unwieldy - maybe after using three or four enhancers together you find that the system breaks down"... A google trawl revealed a few good general sites, the student specialist (ribald) type, an intriguing nautical page and famous mnemonists. This medical emergency page is rather scary: especially the one for Osmolar Gaps "Me Die" - or suicide risk factors "Sad persons". The need for medical mnemonics seems to be particularly pressing, but now you can download them into a (sweaty) Palm pilot. Which is another take on the whole memory machine. When we put "anti-mnemonics" into Google (as you do) we got this interesting tangent, with Coleridge's obeservations on the distractions of periodicals, and the implications of the digital data overload out there

Monday, December 02, 2002

Don't go there Avril Boynton has to fess up to absent friend (is that ex friend) that she weakened and watched the last 2 minutes of 24 (thanks to Max). So definitely don't go here (the best plot summary of this strange show)...or here (a related interview with 'Bride')...Boynton shares a few concerns aired in forums about the anti-woman-ness of it all now, but how seriously can you take a show that lapses into temporary amnesia etc anyway?... And Avril - the big "last 2 minutes" party is still going to happen. We have the tape.

Sunday, December 01, 2002

" if you have animals, a carpeted room is basically a Petri dish" says Dave Trowbridge talking about how to cope with the great divide of home beautiful and shedding perpetual (or with moulting labs anyway). Boynton has worn black for 13 years now to disguise Doug's coat floating about clothes and cars and couches. Luckily it's the Melbourne thing. And at least he's black and not a "yellow" fellow. White hair is a nightmare...
Anyway Boynton has always subscribed to that recently endorsed theory that too much hygeine can stuff you up, and that a dog's affectionate slobber is a tonic.
On matters canine Textism had a nice post, only one of Boynton's charges is guilty of this behaviour, (and it's not the noble lab but the shameless Jack Russell)