Dig my Future home of the Past in the Future

typed for your pleasure on 7 January 2005, at 7.10 pm

I bring you: The Nakagin Capsule Tower in Ginza, Tokyo.

Built from 1970 and opened in 1972 the Nakagin Capsule Tower was a innovative masterpiece by architect Kisho Kurokawa. Kurokawa developed the technology to install the 2.3m x 3.8m x 2.1m sized capsule units into a concrete core with only 4 high-tension bolts, making the units detachable and replaceable. The capsules were designed to accommodate the individual as either an apartment or studio space, and by connecting units they could also accommodate a family. Complete with appliances and furniture, from audio system to telephone, the capsule interior was pre-assembled in a factory off-site and then hoisted by crane and fastened to the concrete core shaft. Today the Nakagin Capsule Tower is in rather bad condition and most capsules are rented out as mini-offices for a monthly fee of about 70,000yen each.

20th century Modern apartment complex? In Japan?? With spaces still more or less available??? SIGN ME UP!!1!

That’s what I think I’ll do; whenever I run across some really fab 20th Century architecture, I’ll post a blurb about it in mine Blog. Can’t go wrong with Modular Living

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typed for your pleasure on 7 January 2005, at 1.26 pm

Los Angeles Times, I salute you for your forward thinking.

‘L.A. Times’ Drops Daily ‘Garfield’ as the Comic Is Blasted and Praised
By Dave Astor | Published: January 05, 2005 12:50 PM ET

NEW YORK The Los Angeles Times dropped the daily version of “Garfield,” the most widely distributed comic in syndication.

“Garfield” has received mixed reviews in recent years, but the Times is one of the few papers to ever dare pull it. Reader reaction? “We are getting complaints,” said Jennifer James, a Times editorial aide, but she declined to reveal how many.

The Times dropped the daily “Garfield” effective two days ago — while keeping the Sunday “Garfield” — to make room for “Brevity,” a new comic by Guy Endore-Kaiser and Rodd Perry of United Media (E&P Online, Dec. 9).

“We’re always trying to get some new talent in the comics pages,” said James, who did not make the “Garfield” decision.

Gene Weingarten, a humor columnist for The Washington Post and Washington Post Writers Group, praised the Times decision during his weekly washingtonpost.com chat yesterday. He said the paper displayed “the kind of cojones missing in too many places” and described “Garfield” as “a strip produced by a committee, devoid of originality, devoid of guts, a strip cynically DESIGNED to be inoffensive and bad, on the theory that public tastes are insipid. [emphasis mine] Now we need others to follow suit. Like the Post.”

When asked for a response to Weingarten’s comments and the Times action, Universal Press Syndicate Director of Communications Kathie Kerr said today: “Our understanding is that ‘Garfield’ ran in a children’s section of the Los Angeles Times. When a feature is dropped on pages which are predominantly read by children, those young readers are less likely to complain or demand its return.”

She added that Jim Davis is “hands on” with his comic, and concluded: “‘Garfield’ is the most widely syndicated comic strip in the world, and that speaks volumes to its popularity. More than 2,700 newspapers worldwide publish it, and, in the last year, more than 50 newspaper clients were added. It’s an easy-to-get laugh a day and that endears it to millions of children and adults worldwide.”

I can remember when Garfield was actually funny. That was for a couple of weeks, back during the fucking Reagan administration. I can understand wanting to milk a ca$h cow dry, but I mean, jesus christ already. How many times can you do a variation on the ‘fat lazy Monday-hatin’ lasagna-lovin’ cat oversleeps’ four-panel strip? Apparently, several thousand times.

If I had limitless sums of monies at my disposal, I would bestow a grant to some programmers, so that they could create a programme that would take every single Garfield strip and variant thereof (i.e, calendar installments, greeting cards, etc) made, and see exactly how many times Jim Davis has done the same three or four ‘jokes’ over & over. Then, I would give another grant to a group of scientists, so they can run a battery of tests to see how much more raw Banality has entered the Universe since Garfield’s inception. Finally, upon receiving and analysing the results from both groups, I would write another sizeable cheque, and give it to some bloodthirsty contract killers, and immediately dispatch them to Jim Davis Estates.

Good christ. For that matter, why is Bil ‘The Family Circus’ Keane still alive? Does no-one else see that as being a problem??

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Yes; I adjusted the timestamps so this would appear below the previous one.

typed for your pleasure on 7 January 2005, at 1.24 pm

So what comics do I like, you axe? Well, I haven’t read print comics in several years, with the exception of Max Cannon’s Red meat, and that’s only because it’s printed in our local alternative paper, so my choices would be predominantly Internet-based.

As most of them are daily, I’ve got ’em bookmarked in a folder of tabs. In order of reading preference, I’ve got
+ Brian Clevinger’s 8-bit Theatre
+ WIGU, by Jeff Rowland, which just concluded its three-year run at the beginning of this year. Before that, he did When I Grow Up, and now he’s working on Overcompensating, which is basically an illustrated Blog. He’s got some super-secret project that he’s supposed to be starting soon, so his readership is waiting with bated breath
+ Diesel sweeties, always a winner
+ Krakow, by Krazy Krow
+ Dorothy Gambrell’s Cat and Girl
+ Barry Smith’s Angst Technology. His site, InkTank.com, contains three ongoing comics, but Angst Technology is really the only one I like. Weak-end Warriors never really appealed to me, as it’s all paintball-based humour, and Sorry, We’re Open started out alright, but now it seems to be just a series of RPG-based gags. If you learn nowt else about me, you’ll discover that I hate RPGs
+ Achewood took a while to grow on me, but it’s rather enjoyable
+ Pathetic, Inc. ‘All images are found with images.google.com. Images are arranged into humorous patterns with Adobe Photoshop.’ How cool is that??
+ Daily dinosaur comics, on qwantz.com. Yes, it’s always the same six panels, but it’s what they say that’s funny, maaan
+ Can You Believe I’m Single?, which seems to be in some sort of holding pattern at the time of this writing
+ You Damn Kid! has been kinda hit-or-miss recently
+ Updated whenever, Van von Hunter usually never fails to amuse. It’s been how many years, and that rescued princess/sidekick still hasn’t mentioned her name?
+ Sometimes Questionable Content gets a little too indie for my liking, but it’s worth it for Pintsize
+ The Useless Superheroes, which would be cooler if Mark S. Inman actually updated every once in a while
+ the brilliant Scary go Round, by John Allison. One of my all-time favourites. Also worth reading is his previous series, Bobbins. Scary go Round is a lot more surreal version of its former self, whereas Bobbins is more of a soap opera filtered thru Seinfeld. In fact Jerry Seinfeld makes an appearance in a couple of Bobbins strips! WINNER
+ My other all-time favourite? Penny Arcade, baby. I save the best two comics for last

Runners-up would include The Karnak Hates Everything Show, Maakies, the My new filing/fighting technique is unstoppable/Adventures of confessions of Saint Augustine Bear/Get your war on cabal, and Leisure town (which you can’t really count cos no new ones are being made). I tend to gravitate towards comics that area either surreal, or darkly humourous, or both. And these fit the bill. Above all, they’re original. They don’t rely on recycling the same goddamn joke or gag over and over ad infinitum. Even at their unfunniest, they’re still miles better than reading sanitised ‘comedy’ that makes me miserable instead of happy

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typed for your pleasure on 3 January 2005, at 11.47 pm

Hey kids —

look what I found. 🙂 Archives for Leisure town, the best goddamned online comic ever made. It even includes interviews with Tristan Farnon, and a couple of other ‘interesting’ links. This seriously made my day about 50% less shitty

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typed for your pleasure on 3 January 2005, at 5.18 pm

My brakes are going tits up! Also, today I was fired!

I’m going to bed, before anything else fucked-up happens. Wake me up when my classes start next Wednesday

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typed for your pleasure on 2 January 2005, at 11.19 pm

So, I understand it’s 2005! Hm.

Just spent an inordinate amount of minutes heaving The World’s Most Comfortable Loveseat (from my first and best apartment, No.23 Deafening silence) into my bedroom, so that I can actually take some new pics of Shi-chan. I guess I dinna measure properly — hardly surprising since math was never my strong point — but the loveseat is deeper than I expected, and sticks out farther than I thought it would. It’s roughly a foot & a half away from the foot of the bed, which I will eventually back towards the wall. However, I can’t push it all the way up against the wall, as my bookshelves are back there. Yeah. I keep telling myself, ‘this’ll only be for two more years at the most..’ I can say that where I’ve placed the lamps makes it nice & highly illuminated; they’re on either side of the room, pointed directly at the loveseat, so as an ersatz staging area, it’s not completely bad. I’d sit Shi-chan down on the loveseat & take a couple of test photos, but my grip strength is almost completely shot from moving that damned couch, and plus, she’s asleep. 😉 It’s my intention to get some pics in next week-end, so we’ll see how that goes. I can’t wait.. it’s been far too long since the last proper shoot..

Currently listening to: ‘Honey honey’ by ABBA, with the original Swedish lyrics. Thanx Jeff! Thanx Internet!

And there you have it; ‘Shouting to hear the echoes’ first post of 2005. As always, utterly compelling

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