Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
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Monday, October 29, 2021

If “criminals are a superstitious, cowardly lot”, then real-life superheroes are correspondingly flighty yet well-meaning.

And full of Marvel Comics-brand angst:

The Super is a superintendent of a building in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, who fixes faucets and does electrical work for people in need. Yesterday, he wore a red cape, a yellow shirt, green suspenders and green tights under black soccer shorts.

The Super, who also declined to give his real name, said he took on the alter ego after a friend was hurt by debris that had fallen from scaffolding. “I said to myself, if we have to wait around for the city or the mayor to fix everything wrong or dangerous in this city, it’ll never get done,” the Super said.

He acknowledged that his self-proclaimed role — as well as what he wears — has drawn derision.

He said he had been laughed at, stared at, egged and stoned. Once, he said, someone in a high-rise apartment building threw a frozen piece of meat at him.

“I don’t have many friends,” he said. “A lot of real-life superheroes stumble along the way. And part of it can definitely make you feel isolated, like nobody understands you.”

Since this is the Internet Age, in lieu of a Bat-signal, these costumed crusaders rely on a MySpace page to convene as “Superheroes Anonymous”. Somehow fitting.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 10/29/2007 08:25:14 AM
Category: Creative, New Yorkin', Society
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Tuesday, October 23, 2021

the fountain flow
Hey, that’s not my clinical assessment of Rome’s famed Trevi Fountain after someone dumped red dye into its water to create a blood-like effect.

Rather, it comes from Graziano Cecchini, an Italian artist suspected of doing the deed as a protest statement:

He said he had taken refuge in an undisclosed location with the photographer Oliviero Toscani, known for his bold, iconoclastic work for Benetton clothing.

“We see the same thing,” he said, citing a comment by Mr. Toscani about the fountain’s new color in the newspaper Corriere della Sera, “Rome that’s still menstruating, Rome that has not entered menopause yet, can still have children, is still fertile.”

[Insert — pun intended — immature tampon joke here.]

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 10/23/2007 11:28:44 PM
Category: Creative
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Friday, October 19, 2021

touched up
People can’t seem to stop poking around the (self?) portrait of Leonardo da Vinci’s favorite girl.

For those not lucky enough to get access to the authentic original, Mega Mona Lisa provides an outlet for all sorts of reinterpretations of the timeless smiler.

I’m sure da Vinci would have approved, especially of skin-bearing renditions. He was way ahead of his time in most other aspects of life. Besides, as smart as he was, he probably could have easily sweet-talked his subject into loosening up for the easel.

(Via Frogsmoke.com)

by Costa Tsiokos, Fri 10/19/2007 08:17:48 AM
Category: Comedy, Creative
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Tuesday, October 16, 2021

say ahh-rt
Now, finally, I have a solid reason for visiting The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Because starting today, Damien Hirst’s shark-and-formaldehyde oddity, “The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living”, will make its home on the museum’s second floor.

If the killer-fish-in-amber visual motif doesn’t make it for you, maybe a life-affirming interpretation will:

In keeping with the piece’s title, the shark is simultaneously life and death incarnate in a way you don’t quite grasp until you see it, suspended and silent, in its tank. It gives the innately demonic urge to live a demonic, deathlike form.

But be aware, this shark is second-string:

The shark in the tank is a recent replacement of the original, which more or less disintegrated. It is smaller but more fierce, and it seems to surge forward, ready to pounce on some unseen prey just beyond the tank. If you bend down and peer through its sharply jagged teeth, you’ll be looking past the pure white mouth at the large black hole of its gullet. It’s a reasonable visual metaphor for the crossing-over that we think will never happen.

I assume the Met is taking a page from Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week”, in an effort to score an art-world equivalent of a winning sweeps week. But hey, it’ll work on me.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 10/16/2007 08:41:41 AM
Category: Creative, New Yorkin', TV
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Sunday, October 14, 2021

I honestly didn’t think “Schulz and Peanuts: A Biography” was going to cause much of a ripple outside of the comics world.

But buzz began with allegations from family members that author David Michaelis skewed his portrayal of Charles M. Schulz too much toward the unflattering. Thus was the story of the creator of Peanuts lent a scandalous air, even if it mostly amounted to a lifelong struggle with melancholy.

Which highlights an interesting dynamic between the public and the artists they adore: The need to believe in a fundamental flaw from which springs talent and inspiration:

Patricia Hampl, a memoirist and poet who grew up in St. Paul and teaches at the University of Minnesota, suggested that our desire to think of good artists as fundamentally troubled stems from a need even now — perhaps particularly now, in the age of entertainment’s dominance — for art to be something separate from our quotidian lives, something almost spiritual.

“People don’t want to believe that someone like them could just sit down at a typewriter or a desk and create something great or timeless,” she said. “It’s got to be the product of a lot of misery and angst.” She compared the impulse to that of conspiracy theorists and their reluctance to believe in the banality of evil: “It’s hard to accept that a guy could just go up into a building and shoot the president.”

Because if it were easy, then everyone should start feeling guilty for not producing out-of-the-ballpark works of art on a regular basis. The impetus for user-generated content on the Web lies behind this, as is criticism that output from the masses shouldn’t be judged by “elitist” standards (even though the judgment ultimately comes from societal measures).

Incidentally, that inability to face up to bland realities syncs with my opinion of conspiracy theories as security blankets:

I’ve pondered the thought process of conspiracy theorists in the past. Without doing any in-depth research on the subject, it seems to me that placing faith in “unseen forces” is actually a comforting thought for many people. In an odd way, it makes more sense that the improbable is behind monumental events, rather than what’s (mostly) apparent. People who subscribe to these points of view can’t accept basic facts, and will take the slightest sliver of doubt to keep crackpot theories alive.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 10/14/2007 02:44:50 PM
Category: Creative, Publishing
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Saturday, October 13, 2021

damn dirty vegas!
Years ago, I somehow came across Dr. Zaius, Live in Concert. It was a comedic detour off of The Wonderful World of Longmire’s quirky parody of that sci-fi classic, Planet of the Apes (the 1968 original, not the remade Marky Mark and the Monkey Bunch version).

It’s a pretty funny visual, crossing the white leisure-suited Zaius with the white jumpsuited Elvis Presley. But it’s just not complete without the accompanying musical clip of Elvis singing “Burning Love”.

Somewhere along the way, that sound file ended up missing from the original page. So feel free to click on the link above to play it, while imagining Zaius swaying to his own groovy beat. I’d set your media player to play the clip on a continuous loop, just like the original presentation. I admit it’s not comparable to the original Elvis-in-Vegas experience, but it’s still good for a headtrip.

That said, I’m not sure that I prefer this over the magnificent Simpsons-ized stage-musical interpretation of simian domination. (”I love you, Dr. Zaius!”, sayeth the late Troy McClure…)

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/13/2007 08:29:00 PM
Category: Comedy, Creative, Pop Culture
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Saturday, October 06, 2021

If you’re going to get hitched in as drab a setting as the New York City Marriage Bureau, you might as well try to brighten the scene slightly with your newly-nuptialized tag art. The semi-famous “wedding graffiti wall”, long the ire of City bureaucracy, is in danger of extinction with the Bureau’s move to new offices.

I was unaware of the Big Apple’s allure as a marriage ground zero:

But on Thursday, The Post reported that the Manhattan marriage bureau is to undergo an extensive relocation and renovation, overseen by the mayor’s personal interior decorator Jamie Drake, as an effort to attract more nuptial tourism — who knew there was an official classification? — like its rival in marriage destinations, Las Vegas. New York City is second to Clark County in Nevada in the number of wedding licenses issued.

Get a gander at the scrawled sentiments here. I’m less impressed that they’re all rendered with ballpoint pen. If you’re going to make a mark-up of your wedded bliss, whip out a spraypaint can and do it right!

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 10/06/2021 07:38:54 PM
Category: Creative, New Yorkin'
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Thursday, October 04, 2021

Here’s what I got when I cracked open my lunchtime fortune cookie today:

:) You are very pretty. :)

I appreciated the sentiment, but felt it was misplaced. However, I instantly sensed an opportunity.

I took the little slip of paper and headed toward the nearest pretty girl I could see (who happened to be only a few feet away). Then I said:

“Hey, it looks like they gave me your fortune cookie by mistake.”

The look of puzzlement I got from that quickly turned into a smile after I handed her the fortune. Worked like a charm, you could say.

How cheesy would it be to regularly pull this stunt as a pick-up line? You’d need multiple copies of the same fortune-cookie slip, the procurement of which alone would mark you as desperate. Yes, even moreso than using your business card to scam on the ladies.

Now I’m wondering if the Chinese restaurant is complicit in this whole concept. I’m sure I’m not the first guy to think of this repurposing, and then putting the restaurant on the list of “lucky” spots.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 10/04/2021 09:09:28 PM
Category: Creative, Food
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Wednesday, October 03, 2021

facing the music
It really started this past weekend with the pair of Kings-Ducks games in London. But tonight, with all preseason action finished and a handful of night games on tap, it feels more like the commencement of the 2007-08 National Hockey League season.

With a steady supply of Rangers, Devils and Islanders games pumping in on basic cable, plus the Versus and NBC games, I can (mostly blissfully) kiss my free time goodbye for the next several months.

To get the season started off right, I’d like to propose a rebooting of the musical selection in NHL arenas across North America. Specifically, the choice of tracks for certain on-ice situations needs to be freshened up — badly. Once that situation is addressed, we can move on to eradicating audio transgressions like “Cotton-Eye Joe”…

Here are my modest proposals for proper musical accompaniment at a good ol’ hockey game:

PENALTY SHOTS
Gotta go with Pat Benatar’s “Hit Me With Your Best Shot”. Fire away!

REPAIRING BROKEN/DISLODGED BOARD GLASS
My choice is Blondie’s “Heart of Glass”. A glass pane that’s actually shattered might warrant Annie Lennox’s “Walking On Broken Glass”; but somehow, it seems too light of a song for arena play.

FIGHTING
Despite its geeky Trekkie connotations, hearing the “Amok Time” soundtrack, aka “Kirk vs. Spock Fight Theme” (adjust volume accordingly) while watching two skaters face off is just too irresistible. Props go to the music maestro at the Shark Tank in San Jose, which I believe is where this idea originated.

On the flip side, I propose a moratorium on “Gonna Fly Now (Theme from Rocky)” for this purpose. It’s been done to death, and the corniness is no longer cute.

DRAWING A PENALTY
“I Fought the Law”. I perversely would hope for the twisted Dead Kennedys version, but the original lyrics as performed by The Bobby Fuller Four, The Clash or anyone else would suffice.

Moratorium: Judas Priest’s “Breakin’ the Law”. Overused. Besides, ever since the days of “Beavis and Butt-head”, I haven’t been able to take that song even remotely seriously.

PENALTY KILL
I would love to hear some vintage Public Enemy when the home team is shorthanded! “Fight The Power” goes well here — as in fighting the opposing power play opportunity. Alternatively, “Shut Em Down”.

POWER PLAY
Rather slim pickings in my mind, surprisingly. But let’s go with Snap’s “The Power”.

BOOTH INSTANT-REPLAY GOAL REVIEW
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers’ “The Waiting”, to match the ripple of tedium and anticipation while the refs chat on the ice-level phone.

Moratorium: The theme from “Jeopardy”. Too hokey for hockey.

Feel free to contribute your own options…

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 10/03/2021 10:23:17 PM
Category: Creative, Hockey, Pop Culture
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Thursday, September 27, 2021

ups and downs
Extraterrestrial package delivery via a 19-mile-long fishing line? That was the concept behind a joint Russo-European experiment to use a length of super-strong Dyneema fiber to drop cargo from low-Earth orbit to landfall:

In the experiment, the Fotino, held in a metal brace by straps, was to be shot out from the Foton-M3 spacecraft with springs as the tether gradually unwound, swinging the capsule forward into a lower orbit about 18 miles below.

About 2½ hours later, after gravity takes firm hold and the entire unit swings in a vertical position below the spacecraft, the Fotino is then released from its straps and glides through the atmosphere for about 20 minutes before a parachute deploys and the sphere bumps to a landing in the steppes of the Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan.

Unfortunately, the tether failed to fully unwind, and the experiment crapped out.

What’s the point of large-scale slingshot, anyway? With the surface-to-space elevator (which I like to call The Umbilicus) in development for a 2019 debut, it seems like the market is cornered on vaguely-silly space conveyances.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/27/2007 08:07:56 AM
Category: Creative, Science, TV
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Tuesday, September 25, 2021

Once again, the MacArthur Foundation has announced its annual two dozen Fellows.

Once again, I’m not on the list.

Not that I’ve been trying. Still, my lazy-man approach should have netted me one of those phat MacA $500,000 “genius award” jackpots by now, based on the following:

1. My proposal, two years ago, to have John D. and Catherine T. anoint me as the first-ever MacArthur Foundation Blogging Fellow. (Obviously, the hoped-for groundswell of support for that never materialized.)

2. My geographic edge, as one-fourth of 2007’s Fellows happen to be based in New York City. I’m right here in the middle of the action! I’ll gladly accept the genius-by-proximity mojo.

But so far, no good. I’ll have to redouble my efforts for 2008. Maybe even take the drastic step of blogging about something meaningful…

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 09/25/2007 08:41:07 PM
Category: Bloggin', Creative, New Yorkin'
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Thursday, September 20, 2021

It says something about the modern-day state of affairs, that not only are several of the world’s indigenous languages dying off from extra-cultural encroachment, but that their demise is paralleled by the growing popularity of wholly invented languages.

In other words (in English only, perhaps regrettably): People would rather learn and spread fabricated tongues than preserve authentic ones. So while Siletz Dee-ni and Amurdag are each down to aged, sole-surviving oral speakers, Klingon and Toki Pona are picking up new adherents every day via the Web.

Both these linguistic trends are sad, albeit in different levels of solemnity.

by Costa Tsiokos, Thu 09/20/2007 06:19:25 PM
Category: Creative, History, Society
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Wednesday, September 19, 2021

weiner on wheels
I’m hoping Miss Moxie won’t mind me bitin’ her too-cute photo of a two-legged/two-wheeled dachshund showing off during some sort of Weiner Dog Race. Dubbed “Poppin’ a Wheelie”, it’s part of the photo pool of contributions to the Nikon “Picture This” D80 Project, of which I’m a fellow member.

Along with inspiring me to go out and find something equally as cool to photo-capture with my D80, this image is also prompting me to finally track down that Harmont & Blaine weinerdog polo shirt.

by Costa Tsiokos, Wed 09/19/2007 09:44:56 PM
Category: Comedy, Creative, Photography
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Monday, September 17, 2021

Does going from this:

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death

To this:

Though I walk in the vale of death’s shadow

Represent the loss of soulfulness?

Robert Alter’s “The Book of Psalms: A Translation with Commentary” is a more accurate/literate English translation of the original-Hebrew Biblical text than the familiar King James version. Along with being (or just seeming?) less lyrical, there was a conscious effort to strip Psalms of conventional Christian spirituality:

Among the most noteworthy absences from his version is the soul. Why Psalms with no soul and no salvation? Robert Alter tells [National Public Radio host] Robert Siegel that those are concepts superimposed on the ancient poems in more recent times.

Who figured the Bible needed a religious cleansing? Good luck selling that one.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 09/17/2007 11:45:11 PM
Category: Creative, Publishing
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Sunday, September 16, 2021

whisked awayAlong with high-fidelity audiophiles, wine enthusiasts tend to be especially easy marks for all sorts of downright silly niche products.

To wit: The Wine Whisk, or “aroma-therapy for your wine”. It’s the grape-tippling companion for those who can’t spare 20 minutes for their bottle to breath:

The result was the Wine Whisk. This handy little tool allows you to speed up the aeration process by whisking oxygen right into the wine. And the end of the whisk doubles as a bottle stopper!

After imparting frothiness to the wine glass, perhaps the imbiber can use the same Whisk to whip up a Chardonnay-laced omelet…

by Costa Tsiokos, Sun 09/16/2007 03:57:33 PM
Category: Comedy, Creative, Food
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Saturday, September 15, 2021


There be ghosts all over Brooklyn. Let them haunt your cellphone while you stroll in their path!

This Sunday’s Cripplebush Ghost Tour (named after the old Dutch name for the Williamsburg area) is part of this weekend’s Conflux Festival. It’s got a little something extra in the way of a ghost story:

Here’s how it works: A guerilla team has plastered the neighborhood with rectangular yellow stickers about the size of a postcard printed with a Pac-Man-style ghost graphic, a phone number and a four-digit code. You text the code to that number, wait 30 seconds for the buzz and accept your digital history lesson.

For example, if you stand outside K&M bar at the corner of North Eighth and Roebling streets and text 3101, you learn that, “Krystyna & Margaret ran this space as a pierogi restaurant from ‘96-’04. One died of cancer in 2004. In the ’60s & ’70s, the space was Go-Go club.”

Appropriately interactive, although think about it: What does the texting part do for you? The information is so byte-sized that it could have as easily been printed on those paper posters. It’s actually more of a hassle to have to text a request for it. If the text shot back more of a multi-media response — spooky audio-video to make the tour “come alive” — then I could see it being worthwhile.

I guess the text component is good for visitor tracking and measuring which sites are more compelling than others. Plus it’ll appeal to compulsive texters. Otherwise, it’s merely cute.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 09/15/2007 01:34:19 PM
Category: Creative, New Yorkin', Tech
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You can take the girl out of the blog, but you can’t take the blog-like sensibilities out of the girl.

Liz, formerly of Breakfast of Losers fame, dropped me an email yesterday. She clued me in on a twin-bed set that she’s selling on eBay. Naturally, she had to attach a funny story to it, which I’m reproducing here — partly because I like it, and partly because it’s reminiscent of one of those catch-on-fire eBay listings that everyone emails to each other:

Save my marriage - buy this twin size box spring
Fix my husband’s mistake

We bought this as part of a mattress set for our daughter. She’s almost 3 years old, yet she still sleeps in our room. This didn’t bother hippies like us. That is, until she decided that the only way she could sleep is diagonally across the bed, with her feet in my back, and her face smashed up against my husband’s face, breathing toxic toddler fumes into his nose. She must dream about returning glory to America’s cycling team, because my kidneys have threatened to shut down if I let her spend one more night kicking them.

We have tried moving her to her own room once she is asleep, to no avail. Do you know that part of The Exorcist where Regan turns her head all the way around and shouts obscenities at the priest? That’s nothing compared to my daughter if you try to move her from her sleeping position.

We thought if gave her a real bed instead of a converted crib, and decorated her room all girly-like, with sugar and spice and Victoria Beckham, that she might bestow a few nightly hours of peaceful sleep upon us. We ordered a whole bunch of princess crap and painted her room so pink it would give Betsey Johnson a headache. Our daughter loves her new room. She even spent half a night in it since we completed the transformation three months ago.

Since we ordered some of the furniture online, we weren’t able to discern that the bed needed only a mattress, and not a box spring. In a classic marital miscommunication (my husband screwed up but I love him so I try not to hold a grudge), we failed to return the box spring in time for a refund. It’s been sitting in our living room ever since, practically begging me to pick it up and hit my husband over the head with it. Before I file for divorce, I need to get this thing the heck out of my living room.

This box spring is still as fresh as a daisy. I have never so much as sat my bum on it, let alone slept on it. My kids have not given it a second look, nor used it as a napkin to wipe off all the chocolate ice cream that I feed them to keep them from driving me insane.

Our home is smoke-free and pet-free. It’s also located in the boondocks of New Jersey, but, unlike Dick Cheney, we have not erased our existence from Google Maps. You should be able to get directions.

Contact me to arrange for pick up. I cannot deliver or ship. Remember, I’m a hippie. This thing does not fit in my Prius.

P.S. It really isn’t a big deal that my daughter sleeps in our room, so if you send me an email directing me to an evil parenting “expert” like Dobson or Rosemond who tells me I need to beat my kids to get to heaven, your address will be signed up for the ACLU’s mailing list, and any grammatical or spelling errors therein will be duly mocked.

Makes me wish she was still punching them out on BOL. I think she’s family-blogging somewhere else online, but it’s just not the same.

She wrote me that more eBaying is forthcoming from her. Maybe she should go all the way and move her brood down the road to eBayville, New Jersey!

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 09/15/2007 12:25:53 PM
Category: Comedy, Creative, Internet
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Monday, September 10, 2021

What if a certain spacecraft from Planet Krypton fell to Earth not in a Kansas wheatfield, but rather in a Bavarian forest? And the Metropolis that the passenger of said spacecraft eventually migrated to wasn’t a fictionalized version of New York, but rather a fictionalized version of Berlin — with Adolph Hitler’s Nazi regime ascendant?

That’s roughly the idea behind Kim Newman’s short story, “Ubermensch!”. It’s one of my favorite alternate history works, not the least because it blends superheroes, German impressionist cinema, and the Cold War into an entertaining yarn. Rather than me trying to explain it, read the first few pages and savor the flavor of a 1930s Germanic Man of Steel.

And after that — and hopefully, after you’ve tracked down a copy of the full story — check out this annotated list of the inside pop cultural references embedded into the story. Some enticing examples:

“That used to be East Metropolis” — the city we see is an amalgam of German Impressionist futurism and real-world Berlin reality…

“He remembered the old uniform, so familiar in the thirties. The light brown body-stocking, with black trunks, boots and cloak. A black swastika in the red circle on the chest. He’d grinned down from a hundred propaganda posters like an Aryan demi-god, strode through the walkways of Metropolis as Siegfried reborn with x-ray eyes.” — this version of the uniform dispenses with the standard coloring, rather evoking the vigilante Brown Shirts of Nazi Germany…

“Avram remembered, the names bringing back Tages Welt headlines. Most of the stories had borne the Curt Kessler byline. Everyone had wondered how the reporter knew so many details.” — Tages Welt translates as Daily Planet, where Kessler is employed as a reporter.

When I first read the story, a decade-and-a-half ago, I got all the comic-book references right away. I got probably half the cinematic ones back then; reading the annotations just now completed the remaining blanks.

Maybe the best/most ironic part of all: In the real world, the Nazis weren’t all that crazy about the Cleveland boys’ version of Superman.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 09/10/2021 06:08:44 PM
Category: Creative, Pop Culture, Publishing
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Saturday, September 08, 2021

Are you one of those people who compulsively pepper their emails/IM/texts with exclamation points? Along the lines of: “c u @ 8! cant wait!!”

What your recipients aren’t telling you: It’s annoying as hell. Pardon me — as hell! Particularly among those of us who are economical with our punctuation.

But I guess the online yellers are winning out. They’ve achieved validation with the publication of David Shipley and Will Schwalbe’s “Send: The Essential Guide to Email for Office and Home”. Messrs. Shipley/Schwalbe advocate all that exclamation marking as a tonic for the inherent limitations of online written communication:

Indeed the “wonderful” is what the exclamation point was originally devised to connote. A relatively recent addition to the punctuation clan, it first appeared in print around 1400 and was known until 1700 as a “mark of admiration,” though admiration in this case meant something like “wonderment” (of a religious variety). Some scholars believe it derives from the Latin Io (meaning joy). Io, the theory goes, might have been rendered with its second letter under the first, thus producing an exclamation mark.

As Shipley and Schwalbe would have it, the advent of electronic communication creates a greater need for pre-modern wonderment. In their view, the exclamation is no mere crutch for the lazy writer but an essential tonic against the grayness of electronic communication: “Because email is without affect, it has a dulling quality that almost necessitates kicking everything up a notch just to bring it to where it would normally be.”

So the mark of emphasis is necessary now, just to bring electronic dialogue back to zero, conversationally? I’m not convinced.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 09/08/2021 07:46:22 PM
Category: Creative, Internet, Wordsmithing
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Monday, September 03, 2021


Go to the tourist destination that is Hamilton Island, Australia (part of the Whitsunday Islands chain), and you’ll find this curious expression in stone:

A first look at the statue, I can say that it was created by a great sculptor. Don’t go too fast! If you look at the back of that statue, you can find a crazy alien. What is the alien doing there?!? We can read on the statue “You shall know the TRUTH and the TRUTH shall make you FREE”.

I don’t know how “crazy” that alien is. Standard universal depiction of the black-eyed, long-headed extraterrestrial, looks like to me. And does he need to be crazy to end up in a down-under tourist trap? Let’s not be judgmental.

Anyway, one to add to the global lineup of strange statue art.

(Photo from Flickr)

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 09/03/2021 03:51:42 PM
Category: Creative
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Saturday, September 01, 2021

If you’ve ever wondered how one scripts an audiobook adaption, writer Sidney Williams provides an inside peek:

Step one is adapting expository material to dialog. “Look there’s a green streak in the sky. It’s going down behind those hills.”

To punctuate that you need an appropriate sound effect, not unlike those Thwapps I was talking about earlier.

SFX: MARTIAN CRAFT CRASHING INTO GRAVEL.

I approached the adaptation of H.G. Wells War of the Worlds, now available at Audible.com and on iTunes, the way I approached comics. Tell the story - don’t worry where the word balloons go.

Or in audio terms, write the sound effects needed, let the sound artists worry about the rest.

This specific comics technique is the Marvel style, which is built upon a writer-and-artist collaborative effort at plotting. Contrast that with the DC style, which relies upon a more traditional writer-first, artist-second storyline development. Check out a side-by-side comparison of the two methods.

The issue of who should be the driving force in a collaborative work — not only comics, but music, movies, etc. — is an oft-revisited tug-of-war. In film, a writer often resigns him/herself to punching out the script, then watching as it gets butchered tweaked by director, actor, etc. That’s a linear, almost assembly-line approach. In other mediums, the evolution comes more gradually. A constant struggle, even when relatively friendly.

by Costa Tsiokos, Sat 09/01/2021 07:09:31 PM
Category: Creative, Publishing
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