Thursday, January 31, 2008

Incredible irony—as of this morning, I am working with Amazon again. Sigh.

Amazon Snaps Up Audible For $300 Million (AMZN) - Silicon Alley Insider:

More digital ambitions from Amazon: The company is buying audio book pioneer Audible for $300 million. The $11.50 per share price is a 24% premium above yesterday's close; it gets Jeff Bezos a company that lost $192,000 on sales of $27 million in its last quarter.
A Golden Infatuation
Pirates of the Burning Sea - Online Gaming - New York Times:

But the golden age of piracy three centuries ago remains so fascinating because it hovers just on the cusp between myth and historical fact. Roaming bands of lawless men amok on the high seas, the Caribbean pirates were in some ways a final paroxysm of the premodern world before colonial governments took full control of the Western Hemisphere. It is no coincidence that the seminal romanticization of piracy, Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Treasure Island,” did not appear until 1883, after the real thing had largely disappeared.

Pirates of the Burning Sea is set in 1720, the peak of Caribbean piracy, just after the War of the Spanish Succession. The game models the entire region, from the eastern coasts of Mexico and Florida down to the northern coast of South America as far as Guyana. Users play as members of the English, French or Spanish empires or as a pirate associated with the infamous Brethren of the Coast.

Within their vast virtual basin, thousands of players can simultaneously explore dozens of towns and anchorages or freely sail one of dozens of meticulously rendered historical ships. The economy is almost entirely player-driven, meaning that rather than ships magically appearing for sale, players cooperate to harvest raw materials like wood and iron and then process and sell them as more advanced wares for a profit.
The Gates of Saint Peter
My new desktop.

2008 01 Rudyends

So long, you fucking fascist douchebag.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Iced Fire
Slashdot | Schneier's Keynote At

"Computer security expert Bruce Schneier took a swipe at a number of sacred cows of security including RFID tags, national ID cards, and public CCTV security cameras in his keynote address to (currently being held in Melbourne, Australia). These technologies were all examples of security products tailored to provide the perception of security rather than tackling actual security risks, Schneier said. The discussion of public security — which has always been clouded by emotional decision making — has been railroaded by groups with vested interests such as security vendors and political groups, he claimed. 'For most of my career I would insult "security theater" and "snake oil" for being dumb. In fact, they're not dumb. As security designers we need to address both the feeling and the reality of security. We can't ignore one. It's not enough to make someone secure, that person needs to also realize they've been made secure. If no-one realizes it, no-one's going to buy it,' Schneier said.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Guarda Rios
Smithsonian Magazine | Arts & Culture | Being Funny:

In a college psychology class, I had read a treatise on comedy explaining that a laugh was formed when the storyteller created tension, then, with the punch line, released it. I didn't quite get this concept, nor do I still, but it stayed with me and eventually sparked my second wave of insights. With conventional joke telling, there's a moment when the comedian delivers the punch line, and the audience knows it's the punch line, and their response ranges from polite to uproarious. What bothered me about this formula was the nature of the laugh it inspired, a vocal acknowledgment that a joke had been told, like automatic applause at the end of a song.

A skillful comedian could coax a laugh with tiny indicators such as a vocal tic (Bob Hope's "But I wanna tell ya") or even a slight body shift. Jack E. Leonard used to punctuate jokes by slapping his stomach with his hand. One night, watching him on "The Tonight Show," I noticed that several of his punch lines had been unintelligible, and the audience had actually laughed at nothing but the cue of his hand slap.

These notions stayed with me until they formed an idea that revolutionized my comic direction: What if there were no punch lines? What if there were no indicators? What if I created tension and never released it? What if I headed for a climax, but all I delivered was an anticlimax? What would the audience do with all that tension? Theoretically, it would have to come out sometime. But if I kept denying them the formality of a punch line, the audience would eventually pick their own place to laugh, essentially out of desperation. This type of laugh seemed stronger to me, as they would be laughing at something they chose, rather than being told exactly when to laugh.

Monday, January 28, 2008

New York's "automotive Bermuda Triangle" - Boing Boing:

Cars are mysteriously dying in a few block radius around New York City's Empire State Building. Many people think the phenomena is caused by the 30+ transmission antennas on the spire of the 102-story building. Officials from the building deny there's a problem.
Light Still Shines On The Fair
no need

Sunday, January 27, 2008


The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan:

Sorry, but the Clintons were just destroyed in South Carolina in an unprecedented turnout. This was a butt-kicking of massive proportions. How else do you interpret a 28 point margin? It's staggering.

And I'm sitting here watching Bill Bennett, despite his Republican loyalties, clearly happy that we have achieved this breakthrough in civility, in transcending race, in bringing so many people back into the system. Good for Bennett to see the import of this. This is history.

In some ways, I wonder if the Clintons' baring of the fangs hasn't played to Obama's advantage. He is showing he can beat some of toughest competition out there. If he wins, he will have beaten not just Hillary but Bill as well. He will have redefined the Democratic party and remade its politics. By staying civil, by focusing on the big picture, by refusing to take the low road while defending himself robustly: he won the right way. And he will win in a big way.
The Daily Dish | By Andrew Sullivan:

In last week's SC GOP primary, McCain and Huckabee (the top 2 finishers), got 147,283 and 132,440 votes respectively. That's a total of 279,723. Obama just pulled down 291,000 by himself. Here's the data.

I'd say this is the game changer. Obama can now say that he's got the best ability to put southern states in play. Obama can attempt a true 50 state strategy. He probably would not win too many southern states, but winning a few absolutely obliterates the GOP's chances in November.
Gone fishing
Teens With Phones: The Next Big Thing For Child Porn:

Kiddie porn! Twelve-year-olds photographed against their will by mustachioed 40-year-old perverts and passed around to other perverts! Except it's also photos of high schoolers, taken by high schoolers, and passed around to other high schoolers, like the photos and video of two girls (one showing her breasts, the other having sex with a boy) that spread throughout an Allentown, PA high school for six weeks before the cops started to investigate. Students say everyone at the 3200-student Parkland High School got a copy, usually on their cell phones. So did students at another high school and at Temple and Harvard. So who goes to jail when underage teens possess underage teen porn?
Alison: Boiler Room - Click: Theater at your fingertips:

Monologist Mike Daisey, who calls himself an "early adopter" of the Web, has been active in the Internet since 1998. He has accumulated 21,000 e-mail addresses from fans.

"Without it we would not be where we are now, with a national career and multiple major cities that expect and anticipate our returning regularly," Daisey said in an e-mail. "I use the main page (of my Web site) as a blog, but it's a blog that has mainly images, articles about info I'm engaged in, work that is being reviewed now -- it's a constant stream ... I do it in public in the spirit of openness and transparency, and readers enjoy the way that articles and pieces they see there find their way into and influence upcoming work."
Remains of the day ...

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Gothamist: Idiotarod '08 Has Taken Off!:

12:45pm - Nearly 300 people, including contestants and judges, just crossed the Manhattan Bridge and seem to be coming from Chinatown.

1:00pm - Our team is on their way from Checkpoint 1 to Checkpoint 2 reporting there's "now about 350 involved and a million photographers and video crews chasing them. It looks like contestants are headed towards cobble hill. Lots of food is being thrown. one team has a catapult in their cart lobbing balloons filled with beer, mustard, and mayo. People dressed as ninjas, in jumpsuits, there's a downtown urban exploration team. Lots of x-dressing contestants."
This week's episode of NPR's Studio 360 is all about NIKOLA TESLA, and features narration from me throughout, illuminating the man's fantastic and impossible life. There are also stories of real-life scientists working in garages today, talk of the archetype of the mad scientists, death rays, earthquake machines--it is a stellar hour of radio, and I was honored to play a role akin to the Stage Manager from Wilder's OUR TOWN in helping to link and connect all the parts together.

Direct link to Studio 360's program--Nikola Tesla: Strange Genius
They Washed Their Hair...
2199639293 Fd180686Fc O
Speechification » Blog Archive » Studio 360: Nikola Tesla: Strange Genius:

Forgive me as I stray a little northwards from my Antipodean lair to bring you this quite wonderful edition of Studio 360, presented as usual by Kurt Anderson. It’s devoted to amateur inventors and ‘mad scientists’, with Nikola Tesla as the super-dense object bending the show’s waves around him. The programme lovingly and carefully explores Tesla’s pioneering work in radar, radio, alternating current and just about everything else in the modern world - which was all to little acclaim at the time.

Mike Daisey relates the life of Tesla in a hilarious and bewitching set of excerpts from his one-man show. With a delivery like Emo Phillips with the fast forward button held down, be sure to stay for the story of Tesla’s death ray. Just after the story of Tesla x-raying Mark Twain’s head.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Parabasis: Enhancement?:

Ultimately, enhancement sits in the intersection of show and business, which is usually a pretty fraught place to be.  We can't expect it to go away.  We're not Sweden where, as Mike Daisey memorably put it, the government just shits money into your mouth.  There's a kind of relentless "damned if you do..." logic whereby the alternative could conceivably lead to some really rocky times for professional theater.  And that possibility is, of course, conservatizing... its the same conservatizing impulse that keeps ADs from making adventurous choices and keeps us justifying the current system instead of envisioning and implementing change. We need to look at the implications of all of this and question how choices are being made at the theaters that are the supposed stewards of the nonprofit system. To do that, we need those stewards to talk about this in the open.
Just a heads up that all tickets are SOLD OUT for tonight and tomorrow night's performance of MONOPOLY!--there are still some available on Sunday, but they're going quickly.

You can order tickets directly from the link in the sidebar, and since  it is general admission I highly recommend showing up by 6:45--the house opens at 7:00, and the show starts at 7:30.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Capitol Hill Arts Center - Theater - MONOPOLY! (Seattle Weekly):

Mike Daisey has been compared to Spalding Gray, David Sedaris and other solo monologuists. But he’s more dynamic and theatrical. Yes, he’s a great storyteller, but he’s also an amazing physical comedian—all the more amazing because he performs seated behind a desk. From that seemingly static position he creates, in MONOPOLY!, a hilarious repertory of hand chops, head shakes, arm sweeps and body jiggles that are every bit as important as the words on the page. Not to mention the guy’s whisper-to-a-roar vocal control and gift for subtle mimicry. His script, which knits together ruminations on big, bad capitalism across recent history (Thomas Edison trying to squash a competitor; Bill Gates and Microsoft doing their thing; Wal-Mart sucking up all the remaining life in Daisey’s Maine hometown; Parker Brothers marketing a stolen game) with incidents from the performer’s personal history.
The Big O into the blue night HDR*
Daily Kos: State of the Nation:

Where the hell has this red-faced, angry, combative Bill Clinton been for the last eight years?

Did Bill get angry and demand that wrongs be righted after the Florida miscount? After Bush v. Gore? After Bush, Cheney, and Rice blew off his concerns about terrorism for 8 months? After Bush's unpreparedness for, inadequate and incomplete response to, and unconscionable exploitation of 9/11? After the unfair media and GOP attacks on Al Gore, Howard Dean, and John Kerry? After Katrina? Plame? The US Attorneys? The "lost" emails? The countless other mistakes and malfeasances of the Bush administration?

Sorry, Bill -- by remaining silent in the face of so many grave catastrophes, you forfeited your right to attack Obama. You forfeited your right to be taken seriously as someone concerned about defending the principles of the Democratic Party -- or of the Constitution, for that matter. You, more than anyone on the entire planet (with perhaps the exception of Colin Powell, who's beholden to neither the Democratic Party nor Hillary Clinton) acquiesced in the American disaster that is the Bush administration by your silence. By your lack of outrage. You could have spoken when it mattered. But you didn't.

And now, by speaking out against Obama, you implicitly argue that he is a greater threat to the Republic and the Democratic Party than anything or anyone over the last 8 years.

So shut the fuck up, Bill.
407835260 A46D05F1Df B
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.

Robert Heinlein
BBC NEWS | Americas | Last Alaska language speaker dies:

A woman believed to be the last native speaker of the Eyak language in the north-western US state of Alaska has died at the age of 89.

Marie Smith Jones was a champion of indigenous rights and conservation. She died at her home in Anchorage.

She helped the University of Alaska compile an Eyak dictionary, so that future generations would have the chance to resurrect it.

Unhinged | Slog | The Stranger | Seattle's Only Newspaper:

FOX News host John Gibson revelled in Heath Ledger’s death yesterday on his radio show, finding a new opportunity to mock Brokeback Mountain (and by proxy, gay love), which in 2006 he called a “gay agenda movie,” Think Progress reports:

“Playing an audio clip of the iconic quote, ‘I wish I knew how to quit you’ from Ledger’s gay romance movie Brokeback Mountain, Gibson disdainfully quipped, ‘Well, he found out how to quit you.’ Laughing, Gibson then played another clip from Brokeback Mountain in which Ledger said, ‘We’re dead,’ followed by his own, mocking ‘We’re dead’ before playing the clip again.”
2213145300 773Cd0Fb3E O
William Gibson:

I saw Cloverfield last night, and nothing about it bugged me more than those quotes around "Central Park" on the DoD evidence tag that opens the film. It immediately tells us that this film has not been made by native science fiction minds. If Central Park is no longer called Central Park, but is officially referred to as "the area formerly known as 'Central Park'", but the DoD still exists, we know that this is not a *far-future* evidence tag. So if Central Park is now known as "The Killing Fields", or "The Ghastly Black Glass Ocean", then *tell* us. Those quotes are extraordinarily clumsy (and the card itself is typographically unconvincing).

Very first thing in the film. Matters. Hugely.
a solar blast warms my winter chills

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

We landed a flat-out rave in today's Seattle Times, the Northwest's "Paper of Record"

The Arts | Mike Daisey's spellbinding "Monopoly" | Seattle Times Newspaper:

A single narrative well-wrought and well-told can be fully satisfying.

But in his spellbinding monologue "Monopoly!," Mike Daisey counterpoints several stories. Stories about the quixotic genius inventor, Nikola Tesla. And the Redmond-based software giant Microsoft. And the invention of America's favorite board game. And a working-class clan in Maine.

Layering outrage, official and underground history, personal memoir and rollicking humor, Daisey makes you think, feel and question in this show at Capitol Hill Arts Center.

And yes, he makes you laugh — hearty laughter, cathartic and barbed.
I'm not at liberty to say
Mike Daisey to Headline A Family Affair Benefit: Theater News on

In A Family Affair, Daisey will tell stories of families and their wonderful, terrifying and infuriating power, joined by solo performers from the Seattle community including Mark Boeker, Allen Johnson, Troy Mink, and Suzanne Morrison. At the conclusion of the performance Daisey's sister Mary will perform a rebuttal to his story, revealing for the first time the true story that lives right under the surface.
National Gymnasium
Wookie Roar | Ask MetaFilter:

Chewie was actually a baby brown bear called "Pooh" whom, Burtt jokes, they didn't feed for a few days, then teased with bread soaked in milk. That sound was then overlaid with dogs and a stranded walrus.

So, first, get a baby brown bear, deny it sustenance for a while, and learn to imitate the frustrated growlings that result when you tease it with snacks.

Then, pay close attention to your dog's vocalizations.

Next, strand a walrus, and listen carefully. I'm sure we would all be very interested to hear your success in this endeavor. I stranded a walrus once, and, boy, do I have some stories!
heather corinna: pure as the driven slush » Blog Archive »:

In college, for instance, on a flight to Oxford-via-Amsterdam in 1990 — back in those halcyon days when there was a smoking section on international flights, and that section was often like a cocktail party — I wound up sitting beside this poetry professor from Iraq. This was a double boon, since previously, I was sitting next to a male schoolmate who had teased me all the way to the airport about the fact that I was a nervous flyer, only to immediately vomit on my feet twice during take-off. So, being able to move at all was a lifesaver. But there I was reading my Blake, preparing for my Big Blake Immersion, and there was this professor reading over my shoulder and sighing blissfully.

We wound up in this amazing 7-hour-long conversation, punctuated by an awful lot of wine and the distribution of many cigarettes; about poetry, art, death, poverty, racism, world peace, love, longing, the whole enchilada. We laughed, we cried, we even yelled once or twice, we held hands. When we parted ways, we exchanged things of great value to each of us, so thankful to have made that connection: I gave him a bunch of stones and crystals I always kept with me for my back (I used a cane for walking for six months in college due to an injury), and he gave me this heavy, woven gold ring. I still have and cherish it: I call it the world peace ring because not shortly thereafter, the first (though technically the second- we’re really in the third now) gulf “war” started and it struck me as so tragically silly that if two strangers, from the U.S. and Iraq, could get along so quickly and easily and talk about difficult subjects so freely and openly, surely world leaders apparently schooled in diplomacy could freaking work it out.
The Arts Blog » Blog Archive » A career in theater is a fast track to poverty -

Those who bemoan the state of American theater should consider this sobering fact: even for its most successful playwrights and directors, it’s a world without money or security. According to theater lore, it was playwright Robert Anderson (“Tea and Sympathy,” “I Never Sang for My Father”) who said that the theater is a place where you can make a killing but not a living.
Day 14 of 365
Mr. Excitement News: Paula Vogel, Richard Nelson and the New American Playwriting Narrative:

Second, as many have noted, Paula Vogel's students from Brown have taken over the American theater. Three of the playwrights at this year's Humana Festival are Brown alumni (a higher number than any other program), while Playwrights Horizons jumped on the bandwagon too. It's always nice to see playwrights breaking through and being successful--and I'm a person who believes that there's room for everybody, in terms of styles.

However, this has also led to a certain sort of play --
which privileges whimsy as its most important element and is typified by the Brown mantra of "the unstagable stage direction" -- being heralded as the New American Playwriting. I'd like to suggest that setting up such a strong narrative about where American playwrights are coming from and what sort of elements typify their plays is a problematic thing.
The Future

On the afternoon talk shows of America
the guests have suffered life's sorrows
long enough. All they require now
is the opportunity for closure,
to put the whole thing behind them
and get on with their lives. That their lives,
in fact, are getting on with them even
as they announce their requirement
is written on the faces of the younger ones
wrinkling their brows, and the skin
of their elders collecting just under their
set chins. It's not easy to escape the past,
but who wouldn't want to live in a future
where the worst has already happened
and Americans can finally relax after daring
to demand a different way? For the rest of us,
the future, barring variations, turns out
to be not so different from the present
where we have always lived--the same
struggle of wishes and losses, and hope,
that old lieutenant, picking us up
every so often to dust us off and adjust
our helmets. Adjustment, for that matter,
may be the one lesson hope has to give,
serving us best when we begin to find
what we didn't know we wanted in what
the future brings. Nobody would have asked
for the ice storm that takes down trees
and knocks the power out, leaving nothing
but two buckets of snow melting
on the wood stove and candlelight so weak,
the old man sitting at the kitchen table
can hardly see to play cards. Yet how else
but by the old woman's laughter
when he mistakes a jack for a queen
would he look at her face in the half-light as if
for the first time while the kitchen around them
and the very cards he holds in his hands
disappear? In the deep moment of his looking
and her looking back, there is no future,
only right now, all, anyway, each one of us
has ever had, and all the two of them,
sitting together in the dark among the cracked
notes of the snow thawing beside them
on the stove, right now will ever need.

Wesley McNair
The Pixies - Where Is My Mind?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Talking About AT&T's Internet Filtering on AT&T's The Hugh Thompson Show - Boing Boing Gadgets:

Yesterday, I was invited to talk about gadgets onThe Hugh Thompson Show, a television-style talk show sponsored exclusively by AT&T for distribution on the online AT&T Tech Channel. I eventually did talk about gadgets, but in light of AT&T's shocking and baffling announcement of their plans to filter the internet, I thought that a much more interesting and important topic.

So that's what I talked about.

As you can see from the video, the crew ended up scrubbing the interview about half-way through. Figuring that might happen, I asked my steely-nerved friend Richard Blakeley to tape the first take. I wanted to make sure that we had a record of the event, primarily to ensure that AT&T would have no reason to try to bury the interview entirely—the same reason I am running this clip now, while discussion about what to do with my segment in post-production is surely underway.
KCR Train
Adam Leventhal's Weblog:

I let it run for a while, made iTunes do some work, and the result when I stopped the script? Nothing. The expensive DTrace invocation clearly caused iTunes to do a lot more work, but DTrace was giving me no output.
Which started me thinking... did they? Surely not. They wouldn't disable DTrace for certain applications.

But that's exactly what Apple's done with their DTrace implementation. The notion of true systemic tracing was a bit too egalitarian for their classist sensibilities so they added this glob of lard into dtrace_probe() -- the heart of DTrace:

#if defined(__APPLE__)
* If the thread on which this probe has fired belongs to a process marked P_LNOATTACH
* then this enabling is not permitted to observe it. Move along, nothing to see here.
if (ISSET(current_proc()->p_lflag, P_LNOATTACH)) {
#endif /* __APPLE__ */

Wow. So Apple is explicitly preventing DTrace from examining or recording data for processes which don't permit tracing. This is antithetical to the notion of systemic tracing, antithetical to the goals of DTrace, and antithetical to the spirit of open source. I'm sure this was inserted under pressure from ISVs, but that makes the pill no easier to swallow. To say that Apple has crippled DTrace on Mac OS X would be a bit alarmist, but they've certainly undermined its efficacy and, in doing do, unintentionally damaged some of its most basic functionality.
be happy and be free.
Seattlest: We Review: Mike Daisey's Monopoly at CHAC:

Reliable sources tell us that if you ask Mike Daisey what he does for a living, he replies that he's "a monologist."

Daisey may be the only person in America who introduces himself that way.

If only those hordes who introduce themselves as "mortgage bankers" or "members of the Bush Administration" were as good at their jobs as Daisey is at his.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Why does AT&T want to know what you're downloading? - By Tim Wu - Slate Magazine:

Chances are that as you read this article, it is passing over part of AT&T's network. That matters, because last week AT&T announced that it is seriously considering plans to examine all the traffic it carries for potential violations of U.S. intellectual property laws. The prospect of AT&T, already accused of spying on our telephone calls, now scanning every e-mail and download for outlawed content is way too totalitarian for my tastes. But the bizarre twist is that the proposal is such a bad idea that it would be not just a disservice to the public but probably a disaster for AT&T itself. If I were a shareholder, I'd want to know one thing: Has AT&T, after 122 years in business, simply lost its mind?
Sun and Signs
Mike Daisey hopes to save America from itself : Sharply funny and highly intelligent, Mike Daisey's "Monopoly" was very impressive.

Daisey is mesmerizing in inflection and facial expression, enough so that staring at the guy for 100 minutes is insanely interesting.

The travesty of Wal Mart and corporate America, the tragedy of inventor Nikola Tesla's thwarted American dream and Daisey's encounter with the richest man alive make for an engaging, intellectual monologue that was like nothing I had seen before. All of these themes tie into the game of Monopoly, an American institution. Because, if the whole point of life is to "pass go and collect $200" and to live under the corporation umbrella, there is nothing to show for it all but loss and profit.

Quite a lot to think about, but Daisey weaves it all together seamlessly. He just...makes sense.

In the end, the show was not as cynical as I was expecting, but even more intellectually engaging than I'd hoped.
Happy Birthday! 365 Day 314
I did an interview on Friday about Microsoft, corporate power and the elements of my monologue MONOPOLY! on National Public Radio--if you'd like to listen to it, you can do so here.

In more local news, it is my birthday. It is also my first day off with no performances, no marketing, no interviews or kibitzing, no fundraising, emergency writing, microproducing, audience shaping, contract negotiations or other bullshit. Low-key plans are being laid, and I am in heaven just sitting quietly.

The view outside my window:


Happy birthday, everybody. Make it a good one.
'Monopoly!' rips into capitalism:

Daisey and Gregory moved to New York, where they have turned out a half-dozen monologues, all with Daisey's signature knack for personal revelation combined with socioeconomic insight. In that regard Daisey continues the legacy of the late genius raconteur Spalding Gray.

His latest creation, "Monopoly!," has the standard Daisey drollness. Everyone in the theater is grinning and laughing with one exception: him. Daisey covers the gamut from whispers to roars, from outrage to astonishment. But jolly he is not. He is your classic serious comedian.

The invention, about 70 years ago, of the unprecedentedly popular board game Monopoly serves as a paradigm for chicanery and deception. Apparently a manufacturer's myth, still to be found in Monopoly packages, neglects to mention that the person who got rich off the game had stolen the idea from a guileless idealist.

In contrast to the rampant capitalism stories, Daisey offers a counterparadigm of pluck and imagination. His hero, the guileless and idealistic inventor Nikola Tesla, improved on Edison's hazardous direct current with the now universally accepted alternating current. He went on to devise a generator that would distribute electricity into the air, free for the taking. Free for the taking?! No meters? No billing? As you can imagine, that did not go over well at all with Tesla's backer, J.P. Morgan.

Fragments of modern economic history and business lore intertwine with personal recollections. The hardship of living without a television in a Seattle house with crackheads and a heroin addict is alleviated by a trip to Wal-Mart with it universe of cheap TVs. The inspiration of working with visionary New York theater artists is frustrated when the vision includes a Tesla coil -- a potentially dangerous device that throws off synthetic lightning.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

AFP: Huckabee links gay sex to bestiality, abortion to slavery:

Republican presidential hopeful and former Baptist pastor Mike Huckabee linked gay sex to bestiality and abortion to slavery in an interview Thursday, explaining why, if elected, he would try to amend the constitution.

"Marriage has ... as long as there's been human history, meant a man and a woman in a relationship for life. Once we change that definition, then where does it go from there?" he asked in an interview with online "Beliefnet" magazine.

"Well, I don't think that's a radical view, to say we're going to affirm marriage. I think the radical view is to say that we're going to change the definition of marriage so that it can mean two men, two women, a man and three women, a man and a child, a man and animal," he added.

"The Bible was not written to be amended. The Constitution was," he said, announcing his intention to amend the document if he were to be elected president in November to ban abortion and establish that life begins at the moment of conception.
56/365 - Reflected
Norm! Vegas Confidential:

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and her camp ate a little higher off the hog than her rival Barack Obama during their week of campaigning in Las Vegas.

Both campaign camps called N9NE Steakhouse at the Palms minutes apart Friday for a food delivery.

Chef Barry Dakake and Jenna Morton, wife of N9NE co-owner Michael Morton, delivered around $200 worth of food, including two Kobe burgers, two organic chicken sandwiches and one order of Dover sole, to Obama in a conference room at the Las Vegas Signature Terminal.

The Clintons' tab came to $1,530 and included entrees of nine steaks, three chicken, three salmon and three Maine scallops, two lobster pappardelle, salads, sashimi, rock shrimp, and various side dishes.
In the shipyard ...

Saturday, January 19, 2008



Last night's preview went very well--the house filled up to capacity, and it was great fun to bring MONOPOLY! back up to full speed after a five month hiatus. It was very cool to feel the stories coming up under my hands moment by moment, and knowing that the whole machinery of it was humming underneath. We're working with the space in a fascinating way this time--giant windows are open to the world, so that during the show electric arc lamps visible outside stream light in, and the skyline of Seattle is visible. It is such a delight to be doing the monologue in such a compelling, living space.

Tickets are completely sold out for tonight. I can't emphasize enough that you should come early, as it is going to be a bit of a madhouse. Doors open at 7pm.

As an aside, this poster design has been somewhat controversial--it's very different from some of our other posters, and has been used around town on the same model as movie posters, with massive walls being put up with many posters together:


However, once you adopt the movie poster angle and put yourself out there, you actually start getting graffiti written on your posters, wherein people share their true, darkest feelings:


I like that someone wrote MOLESTER with the same shade of red as the poster...and that the second person appropriated that into the oldest joke in the world. Culture in action!