Excellent Video

Darin pointed this out to me. There we some times when I really thought he was going to hit something in this drive through Paris at 140 mph...

9 minute video

Superman

"Other heroes are really only pretending: Peter Parker plays Spider-Man; Bruce Wayne plays Batman. For Superman, itís mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent thatís the disguise Ė the thing he aspires to, the thing he can never be."

from The Myth of Superman
By Neil Gaiman & Adam Rogers
in Wired

Idol Pool

My NCAA bracket is plodding along toward mediacraty, which is better then I usualy get. So its time to turn my attention full time to my American Idol Bracket.

You heard me. Don't tell me you don't have one.

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Best Book Ever

Not really, but I'm half-way through The Winter King by Bernard Cornwell and am already having a hard time remembering books I thought were better. Maybe Perdido Street Station.

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iPod Ownership as Political Activism

Count me among those who are at least moderatly concerned about the record and movie industries attempting to create Intellectual Property rights by suing the pants off grandpas and daughters across the country. But what to do?

Here's an interesting idea... give your Senator an iPod stuffed with creative commons materials. Probably doesn't trump the money that Hollywood can raise for a political donation, but I throw it out there for your consideration.

Your Senator Needs an iPod

The Report

I just finished watching the Colbert Report and realized that its a blog with video production value.

Another shout-out to Em for turning us on to the Report. (Don't get jaded Em, I'm not going to mention you EVERY post.)

24

So I'll have 4 hours of 24 to watch the next time I find time to sit in front of the TV for something not related to the Steelers.

Now obviously I like this show since it is one of maybe 2 or 3 shows not related to sports that I have any serious interest in watching. (I'm not sure if American Idol counts because I think I may have stopped watching that if not for fantasy idol.)

But I wonder if each and every episode HAS to have a torture scene. Does it? Heck, even this season's 30 second previews has torture.

Top 5 Authors, Right Now

  1. China Meilville
  2. Neil Gaimon
  3. Iain Banks
  4. George R.R. Martin
  5. Neal Stephenson

Discuss amongst yourselves.

An Interview with Neil Gaiman

Thanks to Puff Stevie for the reference to this interview:

92nd Street Y: An Interview with Neil Gaiman

I'm coincidentally reading his collection of short stories right now: Smoke and Mirrors. Pretty good so far.

The Business

I just finished The Business by Iain Banks. While the world each novel takes place in is very different (late 1990's Earth vs. a galaxy far far away) it reminded me in tone of Against a Dark Background by Iain M. Banks. I am 99.999% sure that those are the same people.

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Good Books

I've read a great run of books lately mostly because some of my favorite authors have come through with some gems lately.

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of God

Near the end of the Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson, which I heartily recommend, Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibniz debate the nature of God. During this debate Sir Isaac utters the following gem, which is here taken out of its context as part of a rationalization for seeking out the power that God uses to influence his creation.

"For the relationship that our souls bear to our bodies, is akin to the relationship that God bears to the entire Universe."

This sentence resonates with my own personal view of God and ties it to every sentient being's own set of morals and values much neater then I ever could.

Just as each of our souls or values or beliefs are guided and shaped by experiences taken in through our body's senses and filtered by our physical brain, so too is God shaped by the universe's senses.

Just as different experiences filtered through different bodies result in different souls, so too do different people in different places and different times result in different Gods.

Is that a fairie your writing about?

In an interview with Wired News, renowned artist Dave McKean (of I draw every Neil Gamon comic fame) had an interesting comment on genre storytelling.

"Films about fairies and hobbits mean absolutely nothing to me. I'll never meet a hobbit. It will never be an issue in my life. But a film about someone who needs to believe in fairies can be fascinating. What drives that person, what's the problem, what's happened in their brain to make them believe? That stuff is fascinating and wonderful. But a film about fairies couldn't be more uninteresting to me." (Complete interview)

As someone who spends a good amount of time consuming genre stories about fairies I was initially a bit taken-a-back by this comment. But really, the best thing about good genre stories are that they can deal with important real-world issues in unique ways because they escape the baggage of our experiences and pre-impressions of those same issues.

So, if the story really is just about Fairies I would be inclined to agree with Mr. McKean. Thankfully there are a lot of good genre stories out there that really aren't about the fairies.