misc

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5 minutes of 2007-01-24: Haiku 3

Pale light falls on leaves;
The garden, deserted, sighs
Under winter's weight.

5 minutes of 2007-01-23: Fatherhood

Quite soppy, this one, I suppose. Madeleine woke up after wetting the bed last night at about 1.30 am (not like her). I sorted out the sheets while she had a cuddle with Nicola. Then I carried her back to bed and was struck by the moment. I laid in bed for about 30 minutes after she'd gone to sleep, before I could get back to sleep, with these words going around my head:


Nothing
Makes me feel more like a father
Than my daughter
Clinging to me in the dark
Softly patting my back

Attention Photobox users - 3p print credits!

In case you use Photobox and haven't noticed (I didn't until last night), they have a New Year offer on, where you can buy print credits for 3p each. Have a look at:

http://www.photobox.co.uk/widestatic/newsletter.html#prints

Just add some print credits to your shopping basket and use the offer code NEWYEARPREPAY.

You have to buy 600 (they are normally 7p each at that volume). I got 1200, and paid for a load of Christmas photos with some of them, which worked out very economically (the first 600 I got cost me £5 more than the photos would have cost anyway, plus I had 450 credits spare after). Value! (By the way, I don't make anything from this, it's just a really great offer.)

5 minutes of 2007-01-22: Plagiarism by Karen Eliot

Whenever you meet a Neoist or one who professes to be a Neoist etc. perform the following:

  1. 5 or 10 minutes into the meeting say in a conversational tone ""telephones and telephone bells have always made me uneasy." (Offer no explanation for this.)
  2. Shortly before the meeting ends say in a non-conversational tone, "Its head was ...white ...all white.". (Offer no explanation for this.)
  3. Do this as many times a day as you like but always at least once a day. (If no neoists are around, you can always pretend that the person you're talking to looks like a likely candidate for Neoism.)
  4. At the end of you Neoist tour provide documentation to Dr. Al Ackerman. (Offer no explanation for this please.)

(http://www.thing.de/projekte/7:9%23/berndt_smile7_white_head.html)

10 minutes of 2007-01-21: Interview transcript

Were you happy last week?
Are you happy today?
What changed to make you unhappy today, when last week you were ecstatic?
Did you hear my question?
Are you living with anyone?
Why not?
When did they leave?
Why don't you get a lodger?
How do you get through the day?
How often do you take it?
Why do you feel the need to take it?
Did you take it before they left, or only after?
When they left, did they say why?
Did they take anything with them?
Have you heard from them since?
Have you got anywhere to stay?
Why can't you look me in the eyes?
Can't you answer that question?
Would you like me to find some for you?
How long can you go without it?
Will anybody miss you?
Do you have any idea who I am?
Or where you are?
Did you come here alone?
Can you reach the drawer from there?
Shall I switch the tape off now?

5 minutes of 2007-01-20 (20 hours late): Uninspired

Inspired by this random Flickr photo.


Not speaking
Thoughts as insubstantial as the shadow
Cast on the wall by filigree leading
Weaker than the light issuing from the
Shocking glossy red of the seat
Two quid's worth of junk
Is what I've descended to
The seats are like too many bottle tops
I would sit with my back to the wall
Trapped in between it and the thick blank-edged table
The dull unreflective edge of the table
A yellow triangle of air bracketing my thoughts
Black shadows merging into fog-thick legs
Pale claws supine on the grey plain
Camouflaged

10 minutes of 2007-01-19: Handwriting recognition

For today's exercise, I started from the text on the side of a bottle of toilet cleaner ("angled neck and viscous liquid"). I wrote this into my PDA using the handwriting recognition tool. Then I looked at what the recognition tool thought I'd wrote, and wrote that. Then once I got into it I started doing automatic writing and following my stream of consciousness. Then I edited, tidied, and brought more narrative into it. This is what I got.


allied neck and
dangled neck and viscosity teases
allied to my dangled neck a swan
a lead mast amid a moby deck
a German farm case in point
gunman mongrelised manager
chooses the bind
exhausted forms
farm worms
expressive husband tomorrow
tomorrow we sieve
we skew the sky for him
more viscous liquid
neck at an awkward angle
the age of pity gone
time wasting
wasting family for hours
pills like clockwork led back to him
the farm his bastion of ruin
I believe he means
nothing but sick
mad mad seconds

5 minutes of 2007-01-18: Visibility

I hate social networking sites.


Visibility

Here's a photo of me with my iPod
Here's another picture
Of the inside of my handbag
Here's a portrait of me looking moody
With my scowling downcast face
Fluorescent lips twisted seriously
Failing to light the depths
Of my kohled face sockets

Here's another picture of me with my iPod
Here I am again with my annoying boyfriend
We barely speak
We drift around together
In and out of photo booths
He could be anybody
At least
Anybody with a goatee and heavy-framed glasses

Here is the inside of another handbag
And a listing of the cool things inside it
Look: another picture of my iPod with a different cover
Look: a furry case for my iPod
Look: a furry case for my boyfriend
Look: here I am
See?

15 minutes of 2007-01-17: The King at the Gate

There's an example of coincidence at work: I looked at my random FlickrLilli search today, and the top picture has the title "I'm the king: open the gate". Which ties very nicely into what I wrote yesterday.


The King at the Gate

Making soap and candles
They were oblivious to the king
Mewling
"I'm the king. Please open the gate."

The concubines sat among discarded vials
Unlabelled
One held the key
The others pursued a range of hobbies

"I'm the king. Open the gate."

Above him
Unseen
They were positioning
A rusty tin bucket full of wax
(The strong metal bail allowed for easy handling
Even with the bucket filled to capacity)

Pouring his rage into the valley
The king stamped his tiny perfumed feet
"I'm the king! Open the gate!"

Pouring their rage out of a bucket
The concubines
Tipped

Two victories for democracy! Huzzah!

Firstly, I got a letter from the House of Commons today, from my M.P., Richard Burden. I wrote to him recently encouraging to sign this Early Day Motion. The Motion was that the House should congratulate the Open University and other educational institutions which make use of open source; and that archaic purchasing frameworks put forward by BECTA and their ilk are preventing the use of open source and hindering small firms in competing for contracts with schools. My M.P. signed the Motion (I quote from his letter: "I agree with the sentiments of this motion"). Hopefully, my initial email helped bring it to his attention. I thank Mr. Burden for taking a stand on this important issue.

Secondly, a response to a petition I signed was posted today. The petition was asking for a change to copyright law to enable "fair use" style copying of music. Apparently, a review of UK copyright law has been running since last December (the Gowers Review); part of the report recommends "introducing a strictly limited 'private copying' exception to enable consumers to format-shift content they purchase for personal use. For example to legally transfer music from CD to their MP3 player". Let's hope this recommendation gets taken up.

While this is good news, there are a couple of worrying points in the press release, accompanying the publication of the review, e.g.:

  • "tougher penalties for online copyright infringement - with a maximum 10 years imprisonment"
  • "lowering the costs of litigation [as] prohibitive legal costs affect the ability of many to defend and challenge IP"

It will be interesting to see how it pans out.

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