Friday, December 26, 2008


Video Find of the Day

This first Video Find in over two weeks is inspired by all the talk about what Obama has to face in assuming office. He has called up a big one. It is the legend.


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Odissi Dance

Video Find of the Day

Classical Indian dance. The description doesn't say so, but I getting the idea the performers in these are typically teenagers, at the oldest. The last time I shared something like this, YouTube pulled the video within 24 hours. Hope this gets to stay.

Rahul Acharya, Odissi Dance

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Triple Fusion

Video Find of the Day

A threefer of tribal fusion, by tribal fusionists Rachel Brice (first), (then) Kami Liddle, (then) Kajira Djoumahna.

Rachel Brice and Kami Liddle - vintage 2005 Tribal Fusion

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Back to OCD

Video Find of the Day

Here's a sign that I may be recovering from my week of weak internet. I'm back to back-posting daily video finds! Here's a video from the Onion that was posted to YouTube in July, but is even better now, given the intervening stock market crash.

Bush Tours America To Survey Damage Caused By His Presidency

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Holiday Song

Video Find of the Day

As we enter the holiday season, it's nice to find videos that tap into the holiday spirit. Here's one of Tom Lehrer doing a song I never heard him do before.

Hanukkah in Santa Monica by Tom Lehrer

Google Street View

I just noticed Google has finally put up Street View for the Seattle area on Google Maps. Seattle lovers should check it out. There are navigable street views of most every street between north Everett and South Tacoma and between Bremerton and Carnation. They've also done most of inhabited Australia, Tokyo, and Paris. I was beginning to think they were slighting Seattle, but it looks now like they were just trying to be thorough.

A random screen shot of one of the 10s of thousands of street images now available:

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Melanesian Choirs

Video Find of the Day

New information requires me to reassess the nature of Broadstripe's suckiness. On the one hand, it turns out that we have not been suffering from a general outage. Our outage is specific to us (Anitra and I). On the other hand, they told us in an automated phone message that it was. On the third hand, we really should have known they were lying, called back and made them tell the truth. On the fourth hand, we have just now run out of hands between us, now, because we believed their lying suck-ass recorded message, we can't get someone to fix it now until Tuesday.

Meanwhile, one of the Real Change vendors recommended this music to me. It's from The Thin Red Line, a movie about the battle for Guadalcanal I've never seen.

The Thin Red Line - Melanesian Choirs - Compilation

Friday, November 21, 2008


Video Find of the Day

Broadstripe still sucks, so I'm resigned to sitting in the office late after hours to use the internet. I'm there now, waiting for some stuff to download to my precious new laptop, which I expect will solve some of these problems, perhaps in a way that involves me spending more time than I wanted in a Starbucks.

Wikipedia says Üsküdar is the part of Istanbul on the Anatolian side of the Bosporus, and it was where Florence Nightingale got famous. These violinists were performing there. I don't know what the music is called.

100 Gypsy Violins, Live in Istanbul - Üsküdar ( Traditional)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Thank You, Broadstripe

Broadstripe sucks. That's why I'm not doing much these days. I can't get on the internet at home because Broadstripe has crashed and stayed crashed for going on two days, the last I checked. I'm posting this from the Real Change office now. Hopefully I can get back to the usual slogging away by tomorrow.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Everly Brothers

Video Find of the Day

Oldies But Goodies from a 1961 TV performance. I was out of the country at the time, and walked in on this sort of thing later, after months of hearing Bésame Mucho played in Mexican shops 5 or 6 times a day.

Everly Brothers - Bird Dog - Till I kissed you

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Desert Blues

Video Find of the Day

Another OCD post! 2nd in a week, isn't it? I'm slipping.

Desert Blues -- Music Project from Mali -- Part 1

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Video Find of the Day

I'd post part 2 but I'm wasted tonight. I don't recall hearing tabla quite like this.

Anindo Chatterjee(part 1)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Hawai'ian Falsetto

Video Find of the Day

I used to hate this kind of singing. But then, I used to hate onions. Now, a day without onions is like a day without hot peppers. We grow and change.

Nā Palapalai

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Internet Terrorism

I keep hearing about concerns regarding internet terrorism. Do you know how many emails it takes to kill a man? Hint: It's exactly equal to the number of playing cards required to prevent the light from the sun from reaching the Earth.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

It's Greek

Video Find of the Day

I don't know what any of this is about. It sounds like a medley. Google translation says the tag ΔΗΜΟΤΙΚΑ means PRIMARY. This is my only clue. PRIMARY what? ΤΡΑΓΟΥΔΙΑ means SONGS. PRIMARY SONGS? Sometimes tags don't help.

ΦΥΛΙΩ ΠΥΡΓΑΚΗ ... (Το λουλουδάκι ...η Ιτιά ...)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

YouTube Contest

Video Find of the Day

This is an OCD post made exactly 24 hours after the time stamped on it. I had to get to bed at a ridiculously early hour (for me) yesterday in order to get up before the chickens for the 14th Anniversary Real Change Benefit Breakfast that was held this morning. Which went great by the way, I only wish Sherman Alexie's people would let me video him and put the video on YouTube, but we've been through that at other events and I know they won't. That fact has nothing to do with why I think this recent entry from The Onion is so awesome.

The crack about teen violence at the end is great, too.

YouTube Contest Challenges Users To Make A 'Good' Video

Monday, November 10, 2008

Miriam Makeba

Video Find of the Day

She left us today.

Miriam Makeba - Kilimanjaro

Miriam Makeba-Pata Pata(TV Record,S.Paulo,Brazil,1968)

Miriam Makeba - Oxgam {Studio Version}

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Garinagu, Garifuna

Video Find of the Day

... whatever. They live in and about Belize (formerly British Honduras). If I'm not mistaken, these are some of they, singing.

Nibari - Umalali

Saturday, November 8, 2008

What? -- 1935

Video Find of the Day

OK. This is just weird. What really appeals to me here is the shot of Andy Devine (friend of Froggy on Andy's Gang) as a relatively thin man around 43 seconds to the end.

Down In Coronado By The Sea - 1935

Friday, November 7, 2008

Brahms & Hungarians

Video Find of the Day

Back to normal? 4 out of the first 5 Hungarian Dances. How normal can we be?

Georges Pretre Brahms Hungarian Dance No.1

Brahms Hungarian Dance No.2

Yehudi Menuhin plays Brahms Hungarian Dance No. 4

Yehudi Menuhin plays Brahms Hungarian Dance No. 5

Thursday, November 6, 2008

You Know You Got It, If...

Video Find of the Day

I'm still winding down from the election. This video helps, as it has absolutely nothing to do with what just transpired.

Janis Joplin 'Piece Of My Heart'

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


Video Find of the Day

This one, for a change, could have nothing to do with the recent election. It in no way relates to the expectations now being heaped upon Obama, that were never heaped upon the vanquished party. It has nothing to do with the higher standards that Democrats are held to. It is merely a piece of Classical Music, of no other significance.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Election Is Over

Video Find of the Day

From the point of view of The Onion.

Voting Machines Elect One Of Their Own As President

Monday, November 3, 2008

Dance Off

Video Find of the Day

Well, isn't this is a good send-off for the election? Why not reduce it to who has the best cgi skills? And, it reiterates what we all need to acknowledge, that Sarah Palin is steaming hot.

Obama and McCain - Dance Off!

Unfortunate Choice Of Words

Sarah Palin stirring up a crowd at a campaign rally today: "Are you ready to send John McCain on his last mission [for America]?"

I don't think the crowd caught the irony. But I did. (I'm very sensitive to that sort of thing.) Yeah, that's the problem, this could very well be his last mission.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Wassup? Revisited

Video Find of the Day

Eight years after the original "Wassup?" commercial, a timely update.

Wassup 2008

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Old Favorite

Video Find of the Day

I'm between moods. I'm coming on one year from the last time I heard from Bethe, so...

Bette Midler "Is That All There Is?"

Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween Video

Video Find of the Day

I should have known The Onion would have the Halloween video I was looking for.

In The Know: Has Halloween Become Overcommercialized?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Gillespie & Armstrong

Video Find of the Day

I went looking for a Halloween video and got distracted. I won't try to explain how I got distracted this far.

Not only do you get two jazz greats, you get spit.

Dizzy Gillespie & Louis Armstrong - Umbrella Man

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Uyghur Dance

Video Find of the Day

Builds to a thrilling finish. I really like the old-guy-dancers.

Uyghur dance: Dolan meshripi (CCTV dance competition)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Obama Internship

Video Find of the Day

Next week: McCain's Retirement.

The Onion: Obama Undertakes Presidential Internship

Monday, October 27, 2008


Video Find of the Day

Long day, starting at 3:30 AM to write the week's column, means I need something relatively peaceful to end with. Maybe not everybody's idea of peaceful, but works for me.

Leyenda [excerpt] Andres Segovia - Issac Albeniz (1860-1909)

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Children of the Night

Video Find of the Day

I saw parts of this tonight on Classics Showcase and remembered how great it was. Truly one of the top 20 movies of all time, for sure, for sure.

"I never drink... wine."

My favorite part of this sequence is the last minute.

Dwight Frye - Renfield meets Dracula (Dracula - 1931)

Saturday, October 25, 2008

You're A Mohammaden; I'm French!

Video Find of the Day

Unbelievably campy opening to a 1929 movie about Moroccan desert fighters. You have a guy in Arab garb who looks like a short bin Laden. You have exchanges like this: "She's only a woman! Give her up!" -- "That's the Oriental in you! You can't understand Western love!" And this is just the beginning of the movie!


Friday, October 24, 2008

Thumpin' and Pluckin'

Video Find of the Day

Three videos of Larry Graham (Sly & the Family Stone; Graham Central Station) playing snippets, looking like an ad for greatest hits and covers. But it's all good, and you get to learn about fuzz and stuff, if you stick with it.

Larry Graham - Funk Original Pt.1

Larry Graham - Funk Original Pt.2

Larry Graham - Funk Original Pt.3

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Sun Of The World

Video Find of the Day

"Songs from Nor mgo village, Rtse Khog county, Huangnan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Qinghai province,PRC."

'tdam gling gi nyi ma (The sun of the world)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Video Find of the Day

A Flamenco guitar version of the song that gets my vote for best of the 20th Century. Tomatito is a popular name of José Fernández Torres

Tomatito - Bésame mucho

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Gay Racehorse

Video Find of the Day

We loves it.

The Onion: First Openly Gay Racehorse To Compete Sunday

Monday, October 20, 2008

Seth MacFarlane

Video Find of the Day

Seth MacFarlane is the creator of Family Guy. When the headmaster of his former high school found out, the Rev. Richardson W. Schell, he asked Fox not to run it. MacFarlane's parents, who both taught at the school, resigned in protest. Cool.

Anyway, now Seth puts out a weekly internet short cartoon clip on YouTube at SethComedy. Click on that and you'll see all the clips so far, one after the other. This one below is the current one.

Cat Staff Meeting

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Chant, Crowd

Video Find of the Day

Some rock.

Joe Satriani - Crowd Chant [LIVE]

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Four Generations of Flamenco

Video Find of the Day

A couple of videos from a 2005 documentary called Herencias Flamenca. IMDB has nothing to say about the content of the film as a whole but the video descriptions say it chronicles "four generations of a gitano musical dynasty." The clips show a family reunion. I especially like the kids and the old people.

familia habichuela por bulerias

I couldn't embed the second one -- Los Habichuela -Ketama juerga flamenca, "The Flamenco Clan" -- but it's here.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Old Lautari

Video Find of the Day

Old recordings of Romanian musicians. I can't believe this is out there. Warning: the transitions from sample to sample are really abrupt. Also, the first video ends with a long period of dead silence.

Lautari of the Past: Part 1

Lautari of the Past: Part 2

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Rhapsody Rabbit

Video Find of the Day

To me this cartoon totally cuts against the grain of the whole Bugs Bunny franchise. Where's Elmer Fudd? Why is Bugs the villain? What's a mouse doing here? Why is the anarchist bunny bothered by the anarchist mouse?

Rhapsody Rabbit

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fannie Mae Guthrie

Video Find of the Day

Almost 30 years ago a government bailout of Chrysler inspired Tom Paxton to write something called "I'm Changing My Name To Chrysler." Now, Arlo Guthrie has updated it.

Arlo Guthrie/I'm Changing My Name To Fannie Mae


I once belonged to a writer's network that cultivated the art of writing extremely short pieces. Members submitted 200-words-or-less pieces to be voted and commented upon. Cleaning my room tonight I found some printouts of mine. I thought I'd share.

"My Dinner Doggy"

From whence my dinner doggy?
Oh tell me, if I please!
The one who drinks 'til groggy
Then pees upon his knees.
The doggy I call "froggy"
Because I'm such a tease.
From whence my dinner doggy?
Oh tell me, or I'll sneeze.

His butt was 'pon a loggy.
'Twas just about to freeze.
His fur was much too soggy
His tail flapped in the breeze.
And crawling 'bout his noggy
Were sixty-seven fleas.
They'll add fine spice to "froggy"
When I scoff him down with cheese.

From thence my dinner doggy.
Now where'd I put my keys?

"Pizza Dream"

There is the dream of someone else. At first, I may be the star in it. That's how it gets my attention. The hook. There's coffee and pizza, too. But it's just to suck me in. I'm there for minutes, I get some pizza, then I turn into a dog or a cat and then the real dreamer walks in and takes over. Last night I turned into three blackbirds. I woke up with a splitting headache.

Why does this guy want me to be present in his dreams? I'm just present there, I don't get to do anything, I'm just an audience in the form of whatever fauna he's obsessing on at the moment. I don't know this guy. I don't want to know him. I should be in dreams of my own. I have my own wishes that need fulfilling. That should be MY cigar, MY railroad tunnel, MY leap off a tall building to certain death. That should be ME drowning, flying, being chased by an ax murderer.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Our Gang

Video Find of the Day

This was daily fare for me in the 50s. Our Gang, Spanky & Our Gang, whatever they were called, were always cropping up on daytime TV. This is the cream of situational comedy.

Our Gang Little Rascals "Fishy Tales" (1937)

Monday, October 13, 2008


Video Find of the Day

In the interest of accuracy I should say that this is, by definition, puerile.

The Onion: 12-Year-Old Boy Scouts Offer To Give Breast Exams

Adore The Sid!

If you look upper right you will see a new "gadget" on this blog. It's an artifact of Facebook, my latest jag.

I am not the only one on this jag. My woman, Anitra "Jagmeister" Freeman is on this jag. My über-boss Timothy Harris is on this jag. Dennis Kucinich is on this jag. And now, Sidney Vicious, the Cat, is on this same jag.

Sid has a Facebook page. If you want to see it, you must be a member of Facebook. If you do that, and go to the "Sid Vicious, the Cat" page, you can become a fan, by clicking on "Become a fan" or some such thing. Please do, because far too few humans have demonstrated their adoration for the One True God.

Your Master:

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Video Find of the Day

Another post brought to you by OCD-delivery.

I cluck melodies out all the time and never get any respect for it. Maybe if I had a better voice when I broke into song between cluckings that would change.

I'm not sure the title is right. It's Poljuschko Polje, for sure, but I thought Cossack Patrol was something else.

Ivan Rebroff - Poljuschko Polje (Cossack Patrol)

Shumba Marimba

Last night Real Change was among the honorees at a dinner put on by Washington State Jobs with Justice, so we got a table up front. The program included amazing performances by Shumba Youth Marimba Ensemble. This is one of those. You can see our director Tim Harris to my right. He has more to say about the event at his blog.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Robeson & Joe Hill

Video Find of the Day

Scenes of a protest in the streets of NYC under Giuliani. The background song is performed by Paul Robeson, so you may want to turn the sound down accordingly. He stressed my own lousy speakers.

This may or may not closely parallel anything going on now, anywhere. We'll probably know better in a week or two. The world appears to be realigning.

Joe Hill protest in the Streets

Friday, October 10, 2008

Gypsy Fiddling

Video Find of the Day

This is the sort of thing that got me hooked on the genre. No regrets.

Virtuoso of the Gypsy Music,Csardas (Sándor Lakatos)

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Video Find of the Day

About one minute into this video you will see where the idea for LCD displays came from. Fifteen seconds later you'll witness a 1934 precursor of The Wave. Then, out will come Lyda Roberti, who will tell you she is chot (pronounce as in German) and sizzling, and she will sing a song entitled "Take A Number From One To Ten." One video, so much.

Jazzy Musical Number from 1934

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Election News Critique

Video Find of the Day

Recent War For The White House entry by the Onion. Not about the election, but about the coverage. Really, a horrid little video actually.

The Onion: Gunman Kills 15 Potential Swing Voters

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Kirk Douglas' Baby

Video Find of the Day

Spartacus was a cool movie, but my favorite Kirk Douglas movie is also one of my favorite movies ever, Lonely Are The Brave. In this interview in seven parts, Douglas calls it his baby. It's his favorite, too.

I loved it from the first time I saw it at 14. It means more to me now. Having been homeless I've been outside too many fences.

The videos were posted by ChisoxGuy. I've collected them in one playlist that runs about 14 minutes.

Lonely Are The Brave-An Interview with Kirk Douglas, Parts 1-7

We May Survive The Asteroid

Good news from astronomy today!

A meteoroid blew up yesterday in the earth's atmosphere over the Sudan releasing a TNT-kiloton of energy!

Why this is good news:

It was spotted "incoming" about a day earlier by an observer at the Catalina Sky Survey 1.5 meter telescope north of Tucson, Arizona. This was the first time in history that a meteoroid on collision course with the earth was spotted and tracked prior to collision.

The meteoroid itself was at most 15 feet across. This is wonderful news. If we can spot the little ones before they hit, we can spot the big ones.

We won't survive our own greed or gluttony & we'll destroy the planet we have, but we'll probably have plenty of warning before the Mother Of All Asteroids disintegrates us, in time to divert it with the very last of our resources.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Teapot Brass

Video Find of the Day

What with the impending depression, maybe the musically inclined among us might want to watch this video and gets some tips on how to carry on.

Eddie Thomas & Carl Scott - My Ohio Home 1928

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Nickels Can Kiss My Pink Ass

Video Find of the Day

The latest news I've seen out of Nickelsville is that the city is prepared to start fining everybody involved for land use violations, and everybody with a name resembling somebody involved, or known to have talked to anybody involved, or having expressed support, or having been rumored to have done so. The Notice Of Violation specifically charges encampment residents John and Jane Doe. They, the Does, as the others, will be subject to fines of $150 per day. I immediately thought, "I'm a supporter. I AM John Doe." Next I thought of this scene, which bears recalling. Fuck Nickels.

Spartacus [Don't have a clue what language the subtitles are in.]

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Comfort Music

Video Find of the Day

When I'm in a foul mood, like after spending 6 hours dealing with insanity, I look for comfort music. My favorite comfort music includes Rhapsody in Blue, various Requia (sp, grammar?) and Funeral Marches (which facilitate lovely fantasies of murder and mayhem) and this classic.

Mozart - Rondo Alla Turca

Friday, October 3, 2008


Video Find of the Day

I first saw Mon Oncle (France, 1958) on a weak local channel afternoon movie program, ca 1967. It mesmerized me. It was amazingly slow and laid back, and I was not doing drugs or pot, in spite of the times, but yet I was mesmerized. Soul will do that to you. If you can harness soul, you can do anything.

Mon Oncle (1958) [dog scene in opening]

Thursday, October 2, 2008


Video Find of the Day

UTU (1983) is one of my top five favorite movies of all time. It got very little attention in the US when it was released here. It has generally been treated as either an art film or as an adventure film. It's neither. It's drama, about a clash of cultures and revenge ("utu" is often translated as revenge.) In the first scene of the first video below, TeWheke is a Maori fighting on the side of colonialists near the end of the Maori Wars in New Zealand, when his own village is destroyed by his unit. The movie follows his subsequent revenge. The second scene of the clip shows the opening of TeWheke's personal war.


UTU is unique among movies that represent a clash of cultures, in that it doesn't try to get the viewer involved by offering a hero he can identify with. There's no Kevin Kostner character in this movie.

Loving Polynesian chant, this next scene is naturally my favorite. In it, we see a unit of Maori soldiers fighting on the colonial side. They are in the hills on the trail of TeWheke and his warriors. They stop for a little uplifting mutual cheer.

Utu - Haka

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Too Much Time on Facebook

Video Find of the Day

Because Timothy Harris, Real Change Director, confessed to joining Facebook, I was deeply concerned, and went in after him, to help shove him in a van and deliver him to the de-programmers.

Once in Facebook I became lost. I made friends with people I thought were already friends. But now, I can poke them, send them kisses, and write on their walls.

Because of the extraordinary amount of wasted time all this represents, today's video find reduces to a plea that pole dancing finally be accepted as an Olympic sport. I mean, look at this. Really. This beats the parallel bars with a two-by-four.

Pantera pole dance act 3 for Hysteria @ noc noc on 7.23.08

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Zino Francescatti

Video Find of the Day

Finally, I've found a video of Zino Francescatti. This is the violinist I named my Green Singing Finch Zino after. Because Zino (the bird) reacted so strongly to Zino the violinist's cassette tape.

La Ronde des Lutins, Op. 25 - Zino Francescatti, Violin

Monday, September 29, 2008

How Bad Is It?

Video Find of the Day

The Dow fell about 777.7 today, a Biblical number representing infinity in a decimal fraction. Let's put this event in further perspective.

Stock Market crash 1929

Ouch, an 80% loss over 4 years! But the Dow fell only 7% in one day, today. Let's see -- compounded daily, 4 years, carry the one, drop the two, roll the three -- oh shit.

Wait a minute, the Dow is only one index! Yeah, it isn't that significant! It's only based on 30 selected stocks! Let's look at the Nasdaq Composite, based on nearly 3000 stocks. Oh, sure, that will be better.


OK. Let's look at it the other way. So the economy tanks. So we end up like India, which, in spite of having all our tech jobs, has less than a quarter of our GDP per capita. So our middle classes all end up working at Pizza Hut, like these guys in Jalandhar, Punjab. You think that would be bad?

Jalandhar Pizza Hut Bhangra Dancing

Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Other Culture War

Video Find of the Day

The conservatives have hijacked the concept of Culture War. There are other culture wars besides theirs. For example, there is the long struggling but still strong Rebel Alliance against Disney.

Disney Geneticists Debut New Child Stars

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Precision Is Sexy

Video Find of the Day has a news story about the Nickelsville eviction which contains this sentence: "The event was a precision protest by homeless advocates, who insist the mayor has failed the city's most vulnerable citizens."

Now, I need to mention that Nickelsville has always been about survival first, and only secondarily a protest against the sweeps (that make it necessary by endangering survival.) It's like when someone tries to hit you, you might simultaneously duck and also yell "NO!" The ducking is the primary act, the yelling "NO" (the protest) is secondary. First you don't want to be hit. Only secondarily do you want to register your objection to being struck at in the first place.

Still, calling what went down "a precision protest" is pretty cool isn't it? It immediately called to mind Mission Impossible, and made me long for the theme song. And what do you know, some Mission Impossible fan with a VCR in the early 90s and a YouTube account today has edited together the intros to six episodes.

Mission: Impossible Opening Montage 1

Yay! -- Wait. Huh?

Great news out of Florida. According to an AP story, a federal judge has struck down Orlando's law against feeding the homeless in downtown parks on the grounds that it violates the rights of homeless activists. Yay!

But, wait a minute. The rights of homeless activists? Why weren't the rights of the homeless people to receive the food mentioned in the story? Were they not considered at all? I'm hoping the AP reporter just left that part out. Still, what would that say about the AP reporter then?

One way or the other I can't give this news a full five cheers. It has to be four cheers and one jeer.

Greg Nickels Is A Fool

The events of the eviction of Nickelsville from alleged city land yesterday felt a little like a Beethoven sonata to me: attack, release, attack, release. Except with a background drone. My description of it for YouTube users is intended to get the idea across to non-Seattleites:

Sept. 26, 2008. Nickelsville, a tent city with ambitions to become a shantytown for the homeless in Seattle. After three and a half days of existence, Greg Nickels, our mayor who hates the homeless, whom Nickelsville is named for, as a dishonor, orders Seattle police to evict the occupants and demolish the camp. The police don't want to do it. They tell the people privately that they know that the mayor is a liar and that there is not enough shelter to house them. They will have no choice but to find yet another place to camp. But orders are orders. In every scene the sound of news and police helicopters overhead nearly drowns out the human voices, but hopefully the sense of the hour is conveyed.

Eviction at Nickelsville

Friday, September 26, 2008

Nickelsville Video

Video Find of the Day

Not my video. I haven't got around to the editing yet. This one is by Aimee Curl and Laura Onstot (posting as lonstot) for the Seattle Weekly.

Nickelsville in Progress


I went to Nickelsville today to take Anitra some boiled peanuts and to check out a news report. I heard that Mayor Nickels was sending homeless activists to do shelter outreach at the same time that he was sending police to break Nickelsville up. I wondered what homeless activists would want to circulate among 150 homeless people and try to tell them all that the meager extra shelter beds that the city has coughed up to justify the sweeps would suffice for all of them.

I found them; they were not really what I would call homeless activists. Social workers in the employ of the Department of Social Services are that: they are social workers. They do social work. They do not necessarily qualify as activists. When I asked one what they were saying to the campers, she told me that they were offering referrals.

So that's how they deal with the cognitive dissonance. They don't actually tell everybody that there is shelter for everyone. They tell each one, one at a time, you call this number on this card, and they can fix you up. They don't ever have to contemplate what would happen if everyone they talked to called the number on the card. Like I say, they aren't activists. Activists would think of that.

Meanwhile I took a bunch of pictures, and some videos. I'll try to post the videos later if they're any good. Here's a few of the still pictures.

When I first arrived I had to find Anitra, of course. She, in turn had to show me her precious pink tent.

Then I ran into some of the other usual suspects, like Joe Martin and friend Hap, and real Change Director Tim Harris, who I got to pose in front of the main area of tents.

Next, I asked just the tents to pose. I didn't photoshop this shot at all. That's how pink they are.

A Freedom Socialist wandered in with a nice sign that met with approval from the crowd.

Since yesterday, and right up to the police eviction today, some permanent structures were being built. Here Anitra is posing with Aaron in front of his pink sheltered pink shelter.

One of the No Trespassing signs the city installed three days ago was lying on the ground when I got there.

Then, the police arrived. There were "negotiations." Anitra took the task of relaying what the police offered to the rest of the "Nickelodeons." It basically boiled down to: if you want to be arrested stick around. If you don't want to be arrested go away.

As it happens, by the time the police came back to conduct the arrests, Nickelsville has word from the governor through her senior aide Ron Judd, that they could set up tents on a nearby parking lot , on state land, safe from Seattle police, at least for a few days. So that may have led some who had planned to let themselves be arrested change their minds. But still 22 people chose to be arrested. By the time I got this shot of the police peacefully, slowly, nudging the crowd back while making arrests, Anitra was already in a police van.

Maybe the last one to be arrested was our Real Change vendor Jewd. She was really into it. I think she ought to be the Nickelsville poster girl.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Campbell Brown Justifies Herself

Video Find of the Day

I haven't been a great fan of Campbell Brown in the past, but I'm turning toward her.

Campbell Brown rips McCain campaign for sexism

University Priorities

... or, The Propagation of Idiocy

Another email list I'm on is ALGTOP-L, devoted to algebraic topology news. I never contribute, I just read the posts to try to get a sense of what's going on in my former research field. There's also news about the people involved, some of whom I remember, and conference announcements.

Today there was a conference cancellation announced at a major Midwest university, with part of the explanation being, "With the tightly packed topology calendar this Fall and the hotel constraints imposed by the sports season, it proved impossible to reschedule."

In other words, one of the principle purposes of a university, the dissemination of knowledge, literally was canceled in this case to make room for sports fans.

Idiocy begets Ignorance, which propagates Idiocy.

Email to HPN

The Homeless People's Network is an email list for homeless and formerly homeless people to talk about whatever, and share information. A lot of the posts direct attention to items in the news about homelessness. Yesterday there were two opinion pieces noted. One was this Seattle Times Editorial, the other was this Las Vegas blog. Both were outrageous and I immediately wrote this in reply, only to find that my email reply function wasn't working. I think I worked around it and the email should be posted to HPN soon. In the meantime, it's here:

I'm having trouble doing email replies in this account, so I'll just respond to the gist of the two posts yesterday regarding Seattle's "pink tent city".

There's some bullshit in both that needs calling out. Both refer to Seattle as one of the most liberal cities in the country with respect to the homeless. This is crap. Until a year and a half ago you could make a case for that claim. In spite of the fact that we've never had more than about half the shelter beds we have needed, we could claim to be liberal because food was easy to obtain and homeless people sleeping outdoors were not often harassed if they stayed away from downtown and away from residences.

But in the spring of 2007 our current mayor, Greg Nickels, SECRETLY initiated a draconian policy of sweeps of outdoor homeless encampments. Even though our One Night Counts have determined that there have been as many as 2600 homeless people in the city in addition to the number that can fit into about 2700 existing beds (these don't count car campers and people who scored couches that night; if you count them there are fewer than half the shelter beds as there are homeless people), even though the mayor has not been willing or able to challenge those figures, he has ordered "cleanups" of homeless encampments. These "cleanups" consist of ripping up tents, sleeping bags, mats, even blankets, and trashing them. People were left with no survival gear, vulnerable to the elements, and no new shelter.

Real Change, the street paper I work with, had to use the Freedom of Information Act to find out what was happening. After we uncovered the policy, which had been hidden even from the city council, the mayor's office "revised" the policy to "take into account public concerns." The revised policy has the appearance of meeting objections, but the fine print contains major loopholes. We have already seen the loopholes exploited since the revised policy went into effect early this year. We have also seen safeguards advertised in the revised policy turn out to be lies.

The revised policy brought with it new shelter, that was touted as the place people swept could go. How many new beds did they provide for the more than 2600 at risk? TWENTY! Not even one percent of the need.

In the meantime, we already have had at least one confirmed case of a man who has died as a direct result of the sweeps. He was driven from a safe spot under a bridge and died from exposure soon after. The fact that they are continuing the policy in the face of that death, a death that was predictable and certainly not the last, is proof that Nickels is a criminal who must be stopped. This policy amounts to attempted genocide, and it has succeeded once so far.

The Seattle Times says Nickels is no Hoover. Given what he has been doing, he is worse than Hoover. He is engaged in nothing short of criminal, unconstitutional, harassment of the homeless population. He has attempted to carry out government policy changes without public view or legislative oversight, a violation of democratic principles of open government. There's nothing liberal about Greg Nickels on this issue, and if Seattle as a whole lets him get away with carrying out these crimes, then Seattle will have lost the right to call itself liberal, too.

As for the pink tents. They're temporary. The plan is to use them only until permanent structures can be built. As for whether they came from a breast cancer charity, I don't know, but I know that Real Change got them earlier from the Girl Scouts of America, and we turned around and gave them to the Nickelsville people. Maybe the Girl Scouts got them from a breast cancer charity, but it's not like a breast cancer charity handed them directly over to Nickelsville.

-- Wes Browning, Real Change News, Seattle

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Celtic French Polynesia

Video Find of the Day

So I was just talking about European influences on Polynesia. Here we have something called Breizh Polynesia. Breizh, if you recall is Britannic Celt for Brittany, France. So what we have is evidence of an interest in Tahitian dance in Celtic France. Why not?

If you're wondering where Lorient is, it's a port city on the Atlantic. If you think of the sticky-outy part of France as a nose, Lorient guards the left nostril.

Breizh Polynesia Lorient

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Isla de Pascua

Video Find of the Day

I'm fascinated by the way cultures impact one another. I've remarked before that I can hear the France in supposedly "traditional" Tahitian music. I think I can also hear the Spain, by way of Chile, in music and dance of la Isla de Pascua, AKA Easter Island, AKA Rapa Nui.

OK, I blow my thesis from the start with this one, a Rapa Nui Hymn. But wait: check out the costumes!


In this next, the background music has an unmistakable Spanish flavor.

Bailes de Rapa Nui - Isla de Pascua

OK. Well. This next one dashes my sorry thesis to bits. But I must include it as I am so fond of red.

Ula Ula en Isla de Pascua


Astro-mythological news: Wikipedia News reports that on Sept. 17, '08 the International Astronomical Union agreed to name an object one-third the mass of Pluto in the Kuiper Belt Haumea. Haumea is now the fifth recognized dwarf planet in the Solar System, after Pluto Ceres, Eris, and Makemake.

Haumea is the Hawaiian Goddess of childbirth and fertility. Her children include Volcano Goddess Pele, Hi'iaka, and Nāmaka, and some dozen to 40 others. The dwarf planet Haumea has two moons which have thus been named Hi'iaka and Nāmaka.

Haumea has a 4 hour day, very fast for her size, which is believed to make her an oblate ellipsoid as wide as Pluto at her widest, but only half that through the poles. So she is a pregnant icon of fertility. I am very pleased that Hawaiian deities are cropping up in the sky.

[Below: Artist's rendering.]

Monday, September 22, 2008

Theodore Bikel

Video Find of the Day

A favorite actor, I never knew that he was also a folk-singer until I started finding videos like this on the internet. This was broadcast around 1966 on Pete Seeger's Rainbow Quest, but I didn't see it back then, probably because it ran opposite something more important, like Gilligan's Island, or Lost in Space. But now I can see hours of clips like these, 123 clips in all, provided by the Rainbow Quest Channel on YouTube (user name peglegsam.)

Old Testament - Peace

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Back At You, Bartok

Video Find of the Day

Bela Bartok drew upon all sorts of Eastern European ethnic music, including gypsy music. So it is right and meet that some should draw back from Bela.

Taraf de Haidouks : "Ostinato" music video

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Donald Lambert

Video Find of the Day

I really just wanted a decent version of Anitra's Dance from Peer Gynt. I found this one, from the 1960 Newport Jazz Festival. Terrible video, terrible audio, but you get the idea. This guy couldn't read music, but he was a genius.

Donald Lambert - "Anitra's Dance"

Friday, September 19, 2008

Sept. 19

Video Find of the Day

... is Talk Like A Pirate Day! Love it or walk the plank!

Talk like a Pirate

Talk Like a Pirate Day: "I'm a Pirate" song

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Fake 1951 Ed Film

Video Find of the Day

Here's a video that fails to answer a question that is on my mind literally hours every week. It's provided by MediumLargePresents. Francesco Marciuliano, who has a blog, may be mostly or entirely responsible for it.

What Is Comedy?

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Video Place-holder

Video Find of the Day

The message on YouTube:

"We are currently performing site maintenance. Be cool - we'll be back 100% in a bit."

So you get (it's actually awesome):

Pussy versus Printer

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Unguiltable Me

Video Find(s) of the Day

It being Mexican Independence Day, I went looking for Mexican Independence music. What I found was really Mariachi music, and I thought, what the hell, I'll just find some good Mariachi music. So I did a search on "mariachi music" on YouTube, and the first of these videos popped up, and I got severely sidetracked, away from Mexico, and all up into Spanish speaking America. This happens all the time with me. I've learned to be unashamed and unguiltable about it.


Obama Song Spanish Reggaeton

Cumbia de Obama

For Obama: "Si Se Puede Cambiar" by Andres Useche

Monday, September 15, 2008

The Onion On Obama

Video Find of the Day

I've had a long day, so I'm just going with the sure thing.

Portrayal Of Obama As Snob Hailed As Step Forward For Blacks

Bethe's Birthday

Tomorrow would have been my daughter's 27th birthday. She was born Diez y Seis de Septiembre, the second to the last all squares day of the century, 9/16/81 (the last being 9 days later.) Her 24th birthday was in 2005. For that one I made 24 designs for her in Photoshop, each one based on a number from 1 to 24. Here are numbers seven through 12:

I've posted the lot of them at Somewhat Art. Clicking on the image above will take you to just that post.

Photoshop Games

While I was in Seattle's Pike Place Market yesterday, I saw a scene that looked like an impressionist painting, took the photograph and ended up with this. It's the sort of thing that keeps me from taking the dirty filthy poisonous paints out. Why poison myself with paints when I have electrons?


I completely forgot about this year's Pike Place Market Buskers' Festival. The man I count on to remind me that it's coming up is Artis, AKA Artis The Spoonman, fellow editorial committee member at Real Change. But Artis has been busy with a move recently, so he hasn't been around to give me the expected heads up.

But fate brought me to the Market anyway. I go there once every 3 months just to load up on El Yucateco Mayan XXXTRA Hot Sauce Salsa Kutbil-ik de Chile Habañero. Three 4 ounce bottles last me that long, if supplemented and extended by 6 ounces of 90,000 Scoville Unit Cayenne pepper. The only store I know in Seattle that sells the Mayan sauce consistently is off Post Alley in the Market.

I get the hot sauce, I walk out into Post Alley, and there's Artis, doing the next to the last set in the Alley as part of the festival.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Vain Alley

Alley of the Week

I'm behind on these so expect another one sooner than a week from now. Fortunately for me my OCD God doesn't hold me to calendar weeks strictly. Days, yes; I have to do daily video finds on the day they're due. But weekly stuff can come in anytime so long as it all averages out. Praise my OCD God and her bountiful munificence.

These pictures were taken here in an alley in Seattle a block and a half south of the backside of the Real Change office, parallel to 1st and 2nd Avenues, between Virginia and Lenora Streets. You're gazing upon a mural on the rear of Vain, postcursor of Vogue, an entertainment venue. I'm not very grafitti-literate, so if there's a signature here that is guaranteed to be that of the artist of the predominant piece I'm clueless of it. But if you're out there and you see this, dude: nice.

How My Brain Works

Video Find of the Day

I see this:

SNL: Sarah Palin & Hillary Clinton (Tina Fey & Amy Poehler)

I think this:

Jerry lee lewis - Put On Your Red Dress & I Believe In You

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Harlem Hot Shots

Video Find of the Day

Some dance videos. Frida Segerdahl and Sakarias Larrson are members of the (Swedish!) Harlem Hot Shots.

Frida & Sakarias

Sakarias again, with two other members of the group.

Charleston jazz performance 1 by Hanna, Mattias and Sakarias

Here's six of them Lindy Hopping at a Swedish version of American Idol, complete with the judge's reactions and votes at the end.

Harlem Hotshots - Talang 2007 E04

Friday, September 12, 2008


Video Find of the Day

Guy I went to high school with looked just like this Rachmaninov dude: he was a dork; his dream was to get a easy bachelors degree (like, you know, majoring in DC comics) and then joining the Seattle Police. So my point is, don't go by appearances.

Rachmaninov plays Rachmaninov: Prelude in G minor

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Call & Response

Video Find of the Day

This video recalled to me the love I have for call & response. There isn't enough call & response in the world I find myself, outside of sports events. I don't understand that. Why is it that the only way Americans can get together like this is to agree upon defeating a rival football team?

the Celebratory dance - Polynesian / Hawaiian

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Rappelling Scene

Video Find of the Day

I keep going back to The Third Man. It has everything: good story, humor, good score, great cinematography, and a chase scene with rappelling in a sewer.

Harry Lime is chased through sewers ("The Third Man", 1949)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Happy Feet

Video Find of the Day

Three amazing clips posted by archt01 from a movie featuring Paul Whiteman (The Right Man, The King of Jazz), Rhythm Boys, Bing Crosby in too much makeup, chorus line dancing, singing heads, and Rubber Legs Al Norman. I'm freaked out.

King of Jazz: Happy Feet: Part 1 of 3

King of Jazz: Happy Feet: Scene 2 of 3

King of Jazz: Happy Feet: Part 3 of 3

Monday, September 8, 2008

Nebtidi Mnain El Hikaya, Why Not?

Video Find of the Day

Here's something different. It's bellydance music without the dancer. Parsing the title of the video: Oud; the guitar-like thingy. Darbuka, AKA Doumbek: the tabla thingy. Nebtidi Mnain El Hikaya: the title of the music. I can't parse more than that.

Oud Darbuka Nebtidi Mnain El Hikaya

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Hora Staccato

Video Find of the Day

A piece I can't hear enough, composed by Grigoraş Dinicu. Since I can't hear it enough, expect me to post other renditions as I find them.

Jascha Heifetz plays Hora Staccato

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Lambda, by Julia

Video Find of the Day

I missed this one the day before yesterday. These are Lambda Julia sets, which is math code for Julia sets associated to complex quadratric mappings parametrized in the fashion of "complex number goes to LAMBDA times itself times one minus itself." It's one of my pet peeves that to read math you have to learn all this jargon. Oh well. Check out the pretty movie. This is MATH!

[Above Right: The Julia we've been talking about. Gaston Julia, Algerian/French mathematician.]

Lambda Julia [Where the lambda is going for a leisurely walk around a circle in the complex plane, and you're seeing the results.]