Blogs > Life, I wrote.

Life Editor Ivan Lajara talks about living in the Hudson Valley, language, the Web, cats and even politics. But he shouldn't.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

John Herald and David McDonald

The late singer-songwriter John Herald performs "Woodstock Mountains" in the living room of David McDonald in Woodstock, circa 2004.



Sweet.

An artist and filmmaker, McDonald is the director of "Woodstock: Can't Get There From Here":



Here's a clip from McDonald's "The Culture Wars":



The second part of "The Culture Wars" is scheduled to be released in October.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Whiskey and copyrights

Athens-based The Felice Brothers are awesome and like whiskey on their whiskey.

Seriously.



That bear in the background of the video by YouTube user "lifeisasoundtrack" is the logo for the Bearsville Theater in Woodstock, where they played earlier this year.

The opening act was A.A. Bondy, an amazing (and I mean, amazing) singer-songwriter from Alabama who recorded his album, American Hearts, at the Red Barn in Palenville.



The sound's is, again, as good as the user's sense of copyright. But the music is superb.

Fear not, they're both playing somewhat close to home, at the Linda Norris Auditorium in Albany (home of WAMC's "Live at the Linda") on Sept. 11. Buy tickets at www.wamcarts.org/artsched.html.  Or call (518) 465-5233 ext. 4.

They also have much better quality music on their MySpace sites:

Oh baby!

For those of you who've been wondering what I've been doing during my staycation, here's a hint.

Her name is Liliana Isabel:

Friday, August 29, 2008

Hooley on the Hudson

The Hooley on the Hudson begins this Sunday.

Preview has the details.

Here's a video from YouTube user "tjsanrn" from last year's festival.


Needless to say, drink responsibly.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Arm of the Sea, as in Theater

The Saugerties-based troupe Arm-of-the-Sea Theater likes hyphens and puppets.
And YouTube user "qwerk" created a montage about the 20-year-old group on YouTube.

It is impressive, to say the least.



The troupe is performing at Bethel Woods on Sept. 21 at 2 p.m., and, as always, at the upcoming garlic festival in Saugerties in late September.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Fireworks

There are lots of YouTube videos of Kingston's fireworks.

Here's one by "ladybecca77"

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Remember the '80s?

YouTube user "newyorkteevee" has been posting old WTZA-TV channel 62 videos for a while.

Here are some videos, which hurt as much as watching women wear shoulder pads:



Monday, August 25, 2008

Sneaky UPAC videos

Sneaky YouTube user "thesurfr" likes to go to the Ulster Performing Arts Center and film the great concerts taking place there.

The quality is poor, and so is "thesurfr"'s understanding of "no cameras allowed."


Here's Joe Jackson in Kingston in April:



Here are Crosby and Nasch last year:




Also, "the surfr" also likes to see the former Uptown Kingston garage demolished:

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Derby videos

YouTube user "victorvodka" uploaded a whole bunch of Kingston Artists' Soapbox Derby videos a day after last Sunday's event.
Here are some:





Saturday, August 23, 2008

Writing, but not writing

I'm going to be on vacation for two weeks, but I've posted enough stuff -- timed to one per day -- to keep you entertained.
I might jump in sometime if anything big happens (because, you know, that's what people do in emergencies -- read blogs).

Until then, here is Yoda, a cat with four ears, which in my book is no stranger than a dude winning 8 gold Olympic medals in a single year.



In this undated photo provided by Glenn Olsen Photography, Valerie Rock poses with her cat Yoda. Ted and Valerie Rock said they've been inundated with television offers and media inquiries since their son posted a photo of their smoke-colored cat on a Web site. That turned the four-eared feline from a suburban animal oddity into an instant Internet celebrity

Biden: The worst keep secret

There, I saved you a text message from presidential hopeful Sen. Barack Obama, who promised to tell YOU first via a text message.

His running mate will be Sen. Joseph Biden, CNN reported late Friday.

Yes, Biden was the one who said Obama was "articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy." You'll hear this till no end until November, just like you'll hear how Sen. John McCain doesn't know how many houses he has.

Television newscasts were doing biographies of Biden on Friday already, noting that the other Veep hopefuls had been notified they were not "it," and that there was Secret Service police at Biden's house.

CNN was reportedly first, so it gets the plug:

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Missed 'Getting Around'?

Well, lucky you. It's all online as it appeared in print.

Better yet, you can zoom in to some parts.
Here's a screenshot of just that.



Cool stuff.

What was that?

Tip number six from "Job hunting a great way to waste time" was a homage to this paragraph, which you've probably seen everywhere:

Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at an Elingsh uinervtisy, it deosn’t mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae we do not raed ervey lteter by itslef but the wrod as a wlohe.


The "rscheearch" has been credited to "The Significance of Letter Position in Word Recognition," a doctorate thesis from 1976 by Graham Rawlinson at Nottingham University.

Alleged job application

Actually, not alleged, but completely false. It was a joke by humor columnist Greg Bulmash, who is also a blogger at http://www.brainhandles.com/

It is pretty funny nonetheless, so here it is.

Read this document on Scribd: Funny job application


According to www.bulmash.com: "No, he never worked for McDonalds, though he did work for Jack in the Box for 2 days in the mid-80s (mostly frying tacos before he got disgusted and moved on to bigger and better things). The job application was a joke (see the April 10, 1997 humor column below) that became an urban legend."

Monday, August 18, 2008

The derby

Once again, this year's Soapbox Derby draw a huge crowd and nasty heat to the Rondout Waterfront in Kingston.

In its 14 year, Sunday's event had 52 entries, the most so far.

And the winners were:

* In the youth category, which children built by themselves:

1. "Free Willy" by the Children's Home of Kingston
2. "Pirate's Fear" by Austin Luker of Kingston
3. "The Bicycle" by Jorel Lalicki of Tivoli

* In the family category:

1. "The Giant Toaster Coaster" By Steve Proner with Aiden and Josh Proner of Woodstock
2. "Olympic Wars" by Charisse Haruta of Hyde Park
3. "The Cat Sails Back" by Andrew Kehr of Red Hook

* In the adult category

1. "Tripping the Light Fintastic" by Keith Buesing of Gardiner
2. "To Go Cart" by Bob Johnson and Carson Parks of Stone Ridge
3. "Beatles' 'Yellow Submarine' 40th Anniversary" by Glen Pepe, Stephen Pepe and Jude Sapp of Pleasant Valley.

Derby notes:

* The Freeman's Bonnie Langston wrote about the Proner family "toaster" a week ago as the family was finishing the winning entry.



* Local politicians were around doing their usual politicking. So no, you can't escape them, no matter how hard you try.

* Most of the crowd, estimated in the thousands, was cleverly located in the shadow. There was, thankfully, plenty of water to go around. And this year, no mayor was ran over. There was also no Mayor's Cup, which is fine with me.

Here are some of my images (Full disclosure: I'm a writer, not a photographer, so judge accordingly):

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Olympic widget

Resources, loosely related to "An exercise of Olympian nonsense"

Let the insanity begin

Game resources:


* The New York Times' John Tierney wrote a piece about the Olympics Tuesday, "Let the Games be Doped," which is accompanied by this wonderful image/omen, by Viktor Koen:



* "Olympic opening uses girl's voice, not face" by the Associated Press.

* Olympic Beat, a podcast by the Associated Press


Olympic Beat



* Also from the AP, an interactive feature about what's in the air in Beijing (hint: Love is not in the air).


* AP Video: Fake fireworks, lip synching:

Getting Around

Getting Around is out today.

Don't forget to get your copy of the Freeman.
Now.
I'll wait.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Crazy eights

So a baby was born in Kingston the other day.

Or as the headline read, "Kingston baby weighing 8 lbs., 8 oz. born at 8:08 a.m. on 8/8/08."

Odd?

How about the same in Iowa?:

"‘Eight’ is theme for baby born today at St. Luke’s"

And how about the same again in Minnesota?:

"Baby born on 8-08-08 at 8:08 (and you won’t believe what the girl weighed!)"

I do believe. Three times.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

One week to go

Artists' Soapbox Derby ready to roll

(Artists' Soapbox Derby founder George Donskoj works on a derby car).



They're toast - and that's a good thing

Friday, August 8, 2008

It's all downhill from here

The Artists' Soapbox Derby returns to Kingston Aug. 17.
The Freeman has a Preview of the event on Sunday.
Last year's winner was The Stealth, pictured below.



In the meantime, here are some images courtesy of derby co-founder Nancy Donskoj.



And here's a video.

"Man on Wire"


Philippe Petit's "artistic crime of the century" is the focus of the documentary "Man on Wire," opening tonight at Tinker Street Cinema in Woodstock.

The movie has been called "one of the year's best films" by the Associated Press.

Petit has been living in Shokan for more than a decade. He talked to the Freeman's Bonnie Langston last year.

The film already has won the Audience Award & Grand Jury Prize for World Documentary at this year's Sundance Film Festival and was the winner of the Audience Award & Special Jury Prize at the 2008 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival.

Here's the trailer:

Joey Eppard and wombat

Joey Eppard, front man of Woodstock-based band 3, is seen here with a wombat in a photo he posted on his MySpace page.

Wombat is the new black

Why am I showing you this?


Eppart is participating in the Soundout part of the "Roots of '69" event at the Colony Cafe in Woodstock (where else?) on Saturday, as reported by the Freeman's Bonnie Langston in Preview.



The marsupial is not scheduled to appear at the event.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Mr. Pundit Man


Mr. Pundit Man, the club-wielding, bling-showing, pants-deprived opinion maker who's illustrating "How to write like a pundit without trying," was created using Marvel Comics' "Create Your Own Superhero."



Yes, kids. I'm getting paid for this.

Pundit links

* Here are some pundits talking to a fake pundit about Fox News' punditry.




* If you think a pundit with a club is too much, here is a photo of Ann Coulter with a gun.






Bang!





* Here's a watchdog group with proof the media is liberal: http://www.aim.org/


* Here's a watchdog group with proof the media is conservative: http://www.fair.org/

Friday, August 1, 2008

Eclipse video

Raw video: total solar eclipse

...

A total solar eclipse is seen in Jiuquan, in China's western Gansu province Friday Aug 1, 2008. Millions of Chinese along the ancient Silk Road gathered Friday to gaze at a total solar eclipse, an event traditionally fraught with superstitious meaning coming one week before the start of the Beijing Olympic

From Russia, with love




The moon passes in front of the sun, during a total solar eclipse as a cross of St.Bazil's Cathedral is seen at left, in Moscow on Friday, Aug. 1, 2008. The rare total solar eclipse will be seen across much of eastern Europe during Friday although some areas are expected to be cloudy.(AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)

Eclipse view from the International Space Station



The International Space Station was in position to view the umbral (ground) shadow cast by the moon as it moved between Earth and the sun during a solar eclipse on March 29, 2006. This astronaut image captures the umbral shadow across southern Turkey, northern Cyprus and the Mediterranean Sea.



Source: http://www.nasa.gov

NASA TV, which is online, has a live feed, if you happen to be up at 6 a.m.
The video will most likely be archived, and will be linked and/or posted here as well.

Solar eclipse

Opening today

"The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor"



Visit www.themummy.com. The site is pretty cool, though the movie is getting buried with bad reviews.
...


"Swing vote"





Visit http://swingvote.movies.go.com