The reason for the non posting is because my laptop decided to stop working for me half way through my trip and although I have this computer I am writing on now (mac mini) I am still not all the way settled into this and probably wont be as I see myself getting another laptop early next year after we see what macworld may bring us.
In other quick news, I have decided that twistedsun.net will be going through some changes in the new year. In fact, I have something totally different in store. Ok, not that different but more simplistic for me to use and post to. The goal is to make it as effortless as possible to post new desktops and news and musings on life. It will most likely take the form of a new site all together which I had other plans for but have decided to simplify for the sake of getting something new rolling along.
Don't worry, I have countless images for desktops and when the new site is functional you will hear all about it here and hopefully the transition will go as smoothly as possible and the future is bright.
Thats all I have to mention here in this post, just a quick hello and see you soon. In the mean time you can check out my flickr page, or my photo blog, or my twitter, or my tumblr blog. See you again soon!
Anyway, as time goes on and the jetlag finally leaves my blurry mind I will try and write more here in this space as well as get some desktops up perhaps. I just have not had the free time to commit to doing it. I am traveling so all I have is free time but I feel like I should be using that time for exploring and doing what I came to do which is to get lost in the flutter of local life. So thanks for reading and check back sometime soon, plenty more to come...
OK, on to the details. I will be starting in London/England (arriving on the 23rd) and I will be leaving on the 31st for Paris where I will stay for 6 nights. After Paris I will be heading south to Italy to a village called Vernazza which is part of the Cinque Terre and I will stay in that area for 6 nights. After this I will head to Nice/Menton for a couple of days hopefully but this depends on weather or not I can arrange a night train from Nice to my next destination, Barcelona. If all goes according to plan I hope to be able to go directly from barcelona to a city nearby called Girona. At the moment I am booked there for two nights in an amazing little B&B and I may extend my time there depending on how I like it.
From here I will head to Granada or somewhere in that area of Spain and then make my way up to Madrid on the 21st and fly out of Madrid on the 22nd.
Sounds simple enough right? Well, all in all I am fairly calm about it all and I am hoping that it all goes smoothly enough. If you are in any of the areas I will be traveling feel free to send along an email and maybe we can get together.
Stay tuned to this space for updates and desktops along the way. I will post photos on flickr (and here some) the occasional text message to twitter (the hi-fi to the right) and maybe a photo from my phone on my tumblr page when I find hot spots around which I have no idea what to expect really.
So wish me luck and the next time you hear from me I will hopefully be safe and sound in London!
P.S - posted a couple new desktops...
I know there are plenty of readers around europe or have traveled there in the past and it would be greatly appreciated if you could take a moment and suggest some places to visit, and maybe just some general advice about traveling there.
At the moment I am thinking of starting off in Spain or somewhere in southern France, heading up through France, and ending up over in England. At least thats the vague overall idea. It will be just me and my backpack for the most part and I hope to do a good amount of camping to save on money spent on Inn's. In fact, thats the number one concern is working out what I can expect as far as where to sleep and how much its going to cost to do so. I hope to have the overall layout of places to travel to before I leave so I can work out train tickets and transportation while I am there.
Hopefully I will be able to pull something off and enjoy myself, meet some new people, take a few zillion photos and have a great time exploring the area.
Feel free to mail me at john(at)twistedsun.net or leave a comment here on this post with suggestions, advice, or lend a floor to sleep on or just tell me I am crazy for trying to toss together a trip like this in under a month on a shoestring budget. Thanks!
P.S- new desktops soon!
This past weekend was a crazy one that had me driving all over Virginia working shows, all country acts that I have never heard of. Thats one genera that I dont really get, modern country. Its really strange! The audio engineer with one of the bands wanted a TON of low end so i brought out some extra subs and he did not really seem to know what he was doing and still could not get what he wanted out of the mix so it was kind of a mess for a while. One of those engineers obsessed with compressors and gates and making live mixing WAY more complicated than it should be. I have become a firm believer in a more simplistic approach to setting up and mixing bands. I wont get into it here because im sure there are not to many people reading the blog here that would care or know what I am talking about and me rambling on to much about it would probably bore 90 percent of you to tears. Well, maybe not to tears, at least I would hope not. Eeeesh... now I'm imagining visitors to my site sobbing uncontrollably as they read what I write here... moving along...
On saturday, however, I skipped out of a show which was just south of DC and drove up there to perform at a show in the city with my friend matt as A Drop In Silence, the electronic music group I am involved in. The event was called simply X. Not simply X but just X. Not just X but X. Get it? Right. Well the show was all about art really and there were three graphic designers (as you can see in the bottom blurry part of the photo above) which were sitting there designing a poster for the event and all of their work was being projected onto the wall to the right there so anyone could watch the thought process behind their designing. Then there were photographers damn near EVERYWHERE running about taking photos of everything you could imagine. I also saw a few videographers milling about with video cameras, one of which was broadcasting the video live to his blog or something like that. And if that was not enough art interaction for you there was a live painter and a BELLY DANCER that was on stage for parts of the night. Oh, and then there was the music. In my mind it was a strange show to perform in some ways because the music was clearly not the focus. I felt that the musicians performing were up there and just kind of faded into the circus of media which in retrospect was pretty fun in a way to be part of this machine that was supposed to be fueled by all of the other creative things happening around the room. But looking back I find that most of the artists were totally in their own world during this event. Not a bad thing but can illustrate even when crammed in a room to create for people live artists can end up being a bit inward moving if that makes any sense.
(this was during our set)
But dont get me wrong, we had a great time performing, it was a really amazing event all in all and I am really happy that we were asked to play. I cant remember performing an event that was documented so well. During our long long long TWO HOUR set we had a constant stream of photographers and video cameras right there behind us nearly the whole time which I did my best to ignore and just do what I do when performing. We ended up playing mostly improvised music for the bulk of the night which was a lot of fun and something we have not done very often live and although the curators encouraged us to keep the music low key we did end up cranking up the volume and getting pretty crazy for a couple songs which they were clearly a little aggravated by but its something that we do and we were performing a show after all and want to represent who we are as artists just the same as everyone else so getting a little crazy here and there is something that is bound to happen.
So later in the night after we performed we drove a few blocks down the street to catch a couple of friends of ours perform down the street at another club. It really was just a huge coincidence that we were performing the same city the same night which was pretty cool I thought. It was great to see them perform as always and a nice way to end the evening with some glitch beat madness from Doofgoblin which performed one of the best sets I have ever heard him perform actually, and MachineDrums non stop dance party set that never disappoints.
After a couple of hours sleep we made the 6 hour drive back home so I could work another show on sunday which nearly killed me after all the other work and performing and driving and whew.... quite a weekend. I have at least two desktops I am getting ready to add but I just don't have time to add them just yet. Soon! Hopefully later today in fact. So stay tuned for more soon and thanks for being patient in these busy months.
It's been a busy month in my life and the site is feeling it. I have plans on posting some info on my new lens and the iphone if I can ever get my act together and sit down to make a write up and take some photos for it. Its just so hard to find free moments for these simple things. C'est la vie.
Anyways, should I make this image into a desktop? What do you think? I also have been posting images pretty regularly over on my new photoblog light.twistedsun.net which has kind of a busted rss feed at the moment but I hope to remedy that as soon as I get a chance to have a chat with my personal coding geek helper over in the Netherlands. (ahem... dave, are you listening?)
Speaking of code, Id like to get this little twitter updater script to NOT add those stupid looking tabbed over dots and just get it more list like. Any suggestions?
Hope to get back to regular posting one of these days, thanks for being patient!
I have launched a new mini-site and I was going to wait a few more days to announce it officially but I have decided that I want to go ahead and get it out there and make it known to everyone here. The site is a photoblog that I will hopefully be updating once each day. The time of day that I actually get around to posting will change depending on my day so don't try and set your clock to the update cycle or anything but I do hope to get a new photo up each day.
I had an older site that I had set up for friends and family where I posted photos that I may not have normally shared publicly. Mostly snapshots from my every day life, at work, traveling, sitting around, anything really. I liked to post a little comment or story or thought with each set of new photos and I really enjoyed doing it. The system I used to update it was very flawed however and so I stopped using it not to long after I had started it. Ever since I have wanted to get a simple photo blog going. Something for those shots I mentioned a moment ago, the everyday ones that I may not want to devote a whole post to here or may not want to post as a desktop for whatever reason.
in the new site you will hopefully see mostly recent photos but I will throw in the occasional older photo if I don't have something new to share. I am using a great bit of web software called pixel post to organize and do all the thinking for me so all I have to do to post is press a couple of buttons and type out a description. Simple is a good thing for a project like this and I am more than excited to announce it to all of you.
On the page you can leave comments on photos which I welcome you do, in fact, i encourage it! If you read something in a comment I have made about the image feel free to start a discussion with your thoughts on the subject. I would love to see it get some feedback and spark some ideas or something of the sort. For instance, if you see an image that you are just dying to see made into a desktop then please speak up and leave a comment and I will see what I can do.
The navigation is very simple I think, there is the home page with the newest photo and on each photo page you can click either the comments link above the image of the "photo info & comments link below the image to call forth the image description and comment field. There is a link there below the image notes to close that area should you not want to post anything but would like to read what I have written about a photo. You can navigate forwards and backwards through photos by either clicking the current image to go back or simply use the previous/next links in the white area below the image. There is also a browse page link at the top where you can see thumbnails of all photos posted and an about page which im sure you can figure out.
So that's that, my newest project is online and ready to go. I have two more in the pipeline that I can not wait to announce and get moving on but you will just have to wait for that time to come. So till next time, enjoy the photoblog and I will see you again here soon!
The new sites address is light.twistedsun.net
So, John, what about your photography, what the hell happened here? Where are all the beautiful desktops and the like?? Well I have been cameraless for a couple of weeks after letting my brother borrow my 5d for a trip to an island somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico but its back in my hands and ready to shoot for me again. Funny how much I missed having it around. So I will start shooting again here soon and get some new desktops up. Also, I will be starting a new photo blog soon. Something I started to do a while back for friends and family but I think that this time I am going to make it public. Should be fun I think. And then there is the other web project I still have all the intentions in the world of getting on its feet one of these days so who knows when that might pop into existence.
Well, thats all for now, ill talk to everyone again soon.
Surely most of you know that I love music and some of you may know that I host a radio show on a local collage station and I thought I would give it a little write up here for anyone interested. My show is on Tuesdays from 1-3pm Eastern US Time, not sure which time zone that is technically is but post in the comments if you know. You can access the radio stations live stream by visiting www.wuag.net or just click here to download the stream file to your streaming radio app of choice...
It is a standard rotation show which means I choose 8 songs each hour from a pre selected group of about 100 new cds that get regularly played during the daytime hours at the station. So 8 songs an hour I am a bit restricted but it gets more fun when I break away from those boundaries a bit and play some things I bring along with me to play.
If you do listen in to hear me make a silly fool of myself on the radio leave a comment here and let me know what you thought!
It feels like I have been anywhere but here updating for all of you loyal readers and I hope to see that change as, once again, I am streamlining the site to try and make updates go easier and quicker for me. One of the things I have decided to change for now is to remove the podcast. I just have not had time to get them put together and released and its just sitting there dead in the water so until I have time again to put them together I am putting that on hold and removing it from the site. I will, however make all of the episodes available, just not in a fancy rss feed or anything. Eventually I am going to re-brand the show and start it up again under a new name but until then just browse through and check out the 10 zillion or so other ones out there.
I dont want to go on for to long here seeing as there are only a handful of you really interested in any of this kind of personal blah blah blah. So I will hopefully get this site moving along better again but how many times have I made THAT promise on these pages? aaahhhh life...
also, what do you think of the new slight design changes like bigger text here, a darker outer shell, archive by year, and new header. I decided to stop using that crazy script to cycle through images for now.
As always, in the back of my mind I have full intentions of getting some more prints for sale on the site here and as always I am looking to get my new desktop site project underway in the future. I think I may have the money to spare to get it up and running sometime shortly but I cant promise anything! I just know that when it does manage to poke its head out into the light of the day that its going to be a lot of fun for anyone that loves photography and the world around you.
Sometimes I wish this blog was more personal so I could rant on and on about my life but I dont feel that its the place to do that. Gotta keep this thing pretty straightforward because you never know who is looking over your shoulder with these things. In other news, I do have some music for a podcast and maybe sometime soon I will put another one out. It seems like it has been forever has it not? Well, im off to start a new hi-fi post. Stay happy readers, your future depends on it! ta.
The CD's are in after a month of work and they are looking and sounding great. For those of you who don't know I am half of an electronic music duo called A Drop In Silence. About a month ago we decided to work on a split release with a frind of ours Doofgoblin and release it at a festival that we will be performing at this weekend in Chapel Hill, NC called Signal Festival. The cd's will be officially available at the show and then online afer that. We only made 250 copies for sale on this first limited edition run so get 'em while they are hot.
Im sure some of you are wondering, what does it sound like? Well... thats a good question and it is often hard to explain to people. Some of it is danceable, some of it is somewhat agressive, some of it is more relaxed. It's sound, its music, what more do you need to know? We will be putting together an ep sampler mix with a little from each song soon and I will try and remember to link to it here for those interested. Sound good? Good.
Also, I am still craving donations to help get my new desktop project underway. MANY thanks to David and Fabian, a couple regulars around here for their help in this department.
Well, thats all for now so until next time, have a good one... Au Revoir.
Remember a while back I posted about a cool new product from korg, the Kaos Pad 3? Well, I finally got my hands on one. Actually, I bought one of these as well as a Microkontrol midi controller for all of my midi controlling needs. I was already familiar with the microkontrol so the real surprise here is the KP3... Man this thing is fun. I have it set up so this is chained together with my older KP2 so I can layer effects and cuts and samples together with them both and now that I have started to get the hang of it I have been having a lot of fun messing with it. I will record something to give you an idea of what i am doing with it. Mostly chopping up songs and pretty much remixing them on the fly. The new KP3 sounds much better than the older ones, has much nicer sampling capabilities, has a higher resolution of control on the touch pad, and many other great improvements. I can not wait to take this thing out to play life sometime! the day can not come soon enough... actually its not to far away, my next show is at this years Signal Festival in the Chapel Hill area in NC. Here is a link for more info, if you are in the area and you enjoy dance, idm, hip-hop, electro, indie rock, or pretty much any other genera that involves electronic music then you should some out to the festival, its going to be GREAT...
For those of you who follow this page rather than the desktop page (which I prefer because then I know my rambling gets read by at least someone), there is a new desktop up that you can see above of the stairs. A nice one I thought. In other news I never do this and try to remain pretty low key about it usually but Id like to open up the floor for donations. Any extra money I can get right now will go straight into my new desktop site project which will be a collective of like minded photographers The will be posting desktops via a blog with stories/thoughts about the photos. I am looking to get people involved from all around the world so it should be fun for everyone that loves a good desktop and good quality photography.
I just need to gather 100 or so dollars for the hosting to get all se up and then within a week or two I hope to have it up and running in its early stages of existence. Frequent readers know that I have been planing this for quite some time now and I am all set to get it up and running so every little bit helps! So THANK YOU for your consideration and even if you cant give anything right know you can look forward to the new site in the next month or two. It should be a lot of fun.
Also, I have jumped on board with the Twitter phenomenon and I am working out the kinks but you will notice the latest update on the side bar there and I will be using it as a way to share what I have been listening to in a quick and easy way. Anyways, thanks for reading and ill talk to you again soon.
First up we have Dustin Hoffman, my mom, my brother (in Dustin's arm) and myself (looking really pissed off for some reason?)
And then we have the funny one here which is a photo of my brother and I sitting in the doorway of a trailer but look who is holding the door open for us.. friggin Steve Buscemi!
Maybe this is only funny to me, who knows...
Also, a new hi-fi is about half done and will be posted soon, some great music on it to check out so look here again soon for that. Till then have a good one everyone!
Tell me, am I the only one that imagines a little red deamon sitting in some cave somewhere with mail piled up to the celieng around him when I get a mail bounced back to me from an address that does not exist? I cant help but imagine this deamon endlessly going through mail that has no home to go to and typing up these replies to everyone. Always a little different but always unusually personal and nice in the way they were written.
Maybe my head is on the moon today or something, who knows.
The title of this post is the name of a book that I just read by a japanese author by the name Haruki Murakami that I just finished reading. All in all its one of the best books I have read in a long long time. In the book he seems to have a way of wording things that are hard to put into words. It is a very simple story of a mans life, more specifically, the romantic side of this life from birth to 'current day' when the narrator is telling the story. I dont know what to say about it beyond this. I just really admired the simplicity in the writing and would recommend it to anyone looking for a good read. Also, I have recently read another book by the same author called "The Wind Up Bird Chronicle " which was much longer and much more involved and brought in some fantasy like elements into the story but was also a great read.
I think the next book I will be reading is one that I have read before but it has been years and years since I have read it so I have decided to revisit it, its called 'The Solitaire Mystery'. Anyone else heard of it? Great book... Its nice to be reading again.
Ok, till next time then... I think it will be a HI-Fi...
Let's see, what else. I have posted a couple of random desktops that I have been meaning to post for a while now so you can head over and check those out if you are interested. Also, I wanted to ask if anyone reads my music posts? It would be nice to know that some of you read them and check out the artists I talk about. Music is such a big part of who I am and I love to share it with others. But I'm sure I have already mentioned this a thousand or so times before so I apologize for sounding like a broken record on the matter.
Anyone else seen the movie Pan's Labyrinth? I saw it for the second time today and I find it to be such a fascinating movie. Really really violent which was interesting because I cant remember seeing a fantasy film like this one that was so violent. I thought that the time period that it took place in with the civil war and whatnot added a lot to the violence but the director made it work so well within the movie. I usually don't have all that high of a tolerance for really violent movies but I think that as long as it it is in place to invoke something in you to relate to the characters and story line then I can stand to watch.
Thats all for now, I just wanted to get an update in while I had a minute here. Talk to you guys again soon!
Here is a random bit from my journal about one of the last mornings I had out in the desert of the western US...
"...chasing the sun rising this morning i could not help but be reminded of sun set with its layers of light taking over the earth in front of me. i felt as though i was driving time backwards like my car and myself were sitting still in the universe yet the earth spun backwards around me like i was winding it up for night to arrive all over again through another beautiful sunset but then the sun was not fading into night, it was welcoming me to a new day..."
So with that new day I found myself driving back east. A long long drive turns out. I ended up driving nearly 24 hours straight only stopping for about an hour of that time for gas and food. It was such a long blur of a drive, I drifted through states as though I was simply skipping through the country. Im not sure why but I just kept driving and driving until I found myself in Memphis in front of my brothers apartment. I remember how disorienting it was to watch the sun rising again after driving through the night. I looked up into the sky and noticed birds migrating, hundreds of them almost filling the morning sky with V shaped patterns of birds soaring through the sky like a huge magic carpet. I couldnt help but feel a connection to their travels and I think that was the point in which I realized that I had to keep traveling. I knew that this was just the beginning. Then at that moment I felt resolved to get back home and start working towards my next adventure right away.
This lead my mind to think of being home and all of the work I needed to catch up on and how many projects I want to get going and I felt both excited for the future and a little nervous and I felt my life at home weighing down onto my shoulders and I felt the weight of my life coming back to me. I figure the Nada Surf song, Do it Again held some interesting advice for this feeling in the verse, "Maybe this weight is a gift.."
So at any rate, I'm back home in one piece and I am getting my thoughts together for the next few months of my life. I have a number of web projects to work on, audio production work to get back into, music to be written and played with matt and A Drop In Silence (my 'band'), stories to read, things to clean, insurance claims to be filed (from the robbery), prints to finally mail (from my christmas contest), photos to go through, a life to get back in the swing of living, and countless other odds and ends of things to jump into the middle of.
As for this site, I will get back to my regular postings and desktop additions, after all of these stories and things I am thinking I may continue to write about life and living from time to time because it has been nice writing like this. I will also be getting my new site rolling in a month or so when I get all of the details worked out. It is going to be great and I cant wait to tell you all of the details so stay tuned for more...
Songs of the moment: "Waiting For My Real Life To Begin" by Collin Hay and
"Woolly Mammoth's Mighty Absence" by The Microphones... below are the words to this song...
Quickly forgetting was the way I lived my life.
Try telling me your name or try telling me "don't worry".
Everything I knew would quickly wither and die
All echoes would be buried in the sound of living,
The sound of feet slapping sidewalk
That was me - treasure hunting, I would bury what I found
That was me - the gold digger, underground
Quickly forgotten was this forgetful way of life
When I left home, when I lived as if I'd died.
Sitting on a rock and doing nothing, alone for so long
In the dark I found my sight
There you name was, written large in letters bright!
And there my faith was!
"Worry not" declared the night.
In the great void of my life, I could feel the shape of what was missing
Like the way the Woolly Mammoth stands so tall and bold in our minds
I was shaking at the size of my cry
And the true love it described.
I know a new day is dawning now and so ends my holy night.
It's back to the world I go, back to little girls and shows,
and their worldly woes, all unfurling clothes.
Will I carry myself slowly enough to remember?
I sit on a dark rock doing nothing, still just crowded in.
There's the love in flesh and bones.
This afternoon around 4:30 or so I made my way out to a perfect spot on a rock out on the rim of the grand overlook here in the Island In The Sky. The land below this cliffs edge had already begun to transform as the sun sank into the western horizon. Bit by bit each layer of this wonderful place began to be overtaken by shadow and every peak lit itself up as if taking one las nice big stretch before climbing into bed and the canyons all seemed so peaceful at that moment.
Before I knew it the sun was hidden totally behind the farthest reach of the horizon in the distance and the highest points on the highest canyon rims before me were glowing red and then quickly fell to a more pale shade of pink. At this point the landscape began a second transformation and this time there were still layers of light yet to pass their way through the canyons below. Even darker shadows began to take over areas and then looking toward where the sun once was I could see that last gasp of orange light stretching its self across the horizon and finally moved onto wake the eastern world from its slumber.
During this sunset something else was happening as well, the moon was there all along as if waiting for its chance to shine its light on the world below. Looking up to the moon I thought to myself how the moon is nothing but a mirror reflecting the light of the sun as though the sun was teaming up with the moon to give the gift of light at night. At one point there in between the day and the night I found that I had two shadows which is something that I have never seen happen before. One cast off into the distance with its orange glow and the other laying almost directly from overhead with a blueish tint. It was a wonderful feeling there at that moment like I was trapped between night and day.
Also as the sun set, the last of the other visitors left and went along on their way and from what the rangers told me earlier in the day I was the only person staying the night out there in the park and this left me to realize that I had this whole island to myself. The entirety of this wonderful moon lit landscape was mine for the night. Along with this realization came that I was totally alone there sitting in the cold of the night on the edge of the rim of this great canyon. I started to feel lonely and as time went by I came to find that I could not remember a time in my life when I had felt so alone in the world. I imagined each time the cold night breeze brushed against my face that a ghost was there making its presence known to me. I felt the cold stone beneath me and felt that I could connect with the spirit of this place at that moment and knew that it would take care of me. It calmed me to think of this and I felt at ease there looking out into the landscape of the night. What was once brilliant orange was now beautiful shades of grey and blue and as I looked out into the night It hit me that this is why I had come out here to this area. To feel the force of the planet, to feel the presence of the seemingly never ending world and feel humbled by its greatness.
And in that moment I felt so alive it was hard to bare, in that moment of total awareness and in the black cold of a winters night I felt free and ready to move on and discover the rest of my life somehow transformed by the great unknown of this land as it spoke to me and in this moment I felt peace.
Great Ghosts, pt. 2... later that evening after shooting a handful of photos...
As I was out shooting I heard a sound in the near distance, close yet far and I thought it to be a crow seeing as I had seen them around so often. After a few moments of hearing it It hit me that it was not the sound of a crow at all, it was some sort of mammal but what? I wisked my flashlight around to the direction of the sound and the beam of light caught a flicker of something among the giant rocks of the canyon. I could swear the flicker were eyes. As quickly as they were there I shone my light back to where the flicker was but they were gone. Then moments later the sound came again and again I shone my light over in the direction of the sound and I found that flicker of light again and again I saw eyes and this time it was obvious. Two yellow eyes staring right at me. I decided that I was not welcome there anymore, besides, I was the intruder here, not whomever those eyes belonged to.
So I gathered my camera and my book and stepped back to the trail when once again I heard the sound of whatever animal was out there creeping around in the shadows of the moon, calling out into the void only this time the sound was closer to me and I turned my flashlight back on and once again locked into a staring match with those two yellow eyes. This time I found that they were obviously right there on the path of the trail that I had to take to get out of there and to the right of me was a huge cliff and to the left of me was another cliff of sorts that I could not get around easily. The trail was my only way to get back to my car which rested a half a mile or so away. So I sat there and stared into these eyes for what felt like forever as I ran through my mind what to do next. I decided that I had to keep moving so I figured I needed to try and scare whatever this thing was off so first I flickered my flashlight in its direction and made some sort of odd sound to try and spook it. As I flickered the light its direction the eyes vanished from sight and I had no idea where it disappeared to. I did not hear any movement at all which made me nervous. No rocks or sand shifting, no rustle of plants, nothing. The eyes just vanished as quickly as they appeared and I no longer heard its calling.
Funny thing was while this was happening to me, all the while something repeated in my head that I had heard from a silly little campfire story time type thing led by a ranger the last time I was out in this area. The ranger talked for a while about animals in the area and there was one phrase that stuck in my head repeating as if trying to make my heart race any faster than it already was. That phrase was "...eyes in the front, likes to hunt. Eyes to the side, likes to hide." The yellow eyes that I had stared into were definitely to the front, no question about it.
So heart racing I left my light on and stomped slowly forward down the trail toward where I had encountered the eyes and made myself look as big and menacing as possible stomping and ever so slowly marching forward on the trail. I continued to shine my light around into the shadows and through the brush and trees but thankfully I did not come across those eyes again. As I made it up to the main overlook where the sidewalk began I heard the animal calling yet again but this time in the distance. A couple of photos later I was back in my car heading towards my camp site thankful but oh so very curious what I had come in contact with out there...
Song of the moment, "Great Ghosts" as performed by The Microphones on their live in Japan album. It's the first track on there and one of the most wonderful songs ever written. I promise.
(strange choice of exposure no?)
How could you not feel humbled to the point where your heart aches and your eyes sting while looking out into this beautiful landscape? You cant help but want to throw your arms out into the air like a birds wings, get a good running start, kick off the ledge of the cliff and soar through the landscape like one of these lucky crows that seem to be everywhere I go.
It's hard to believe that some people come through here, get out of their cars, walk the hundred or so feet to the overlook only to turn back around not 1 minute later to hop back in their car and drive off. I hear them say things like, "oh honey, this is just like a grand canyon type overlook, thats all... hm... ok well lets go, I want to get to arches before the end of the day..." Oddly enough, this happened at around 4pm which was only a bout an hour before sunset and arches was a good 30 minute drive at least... I think Edward Abbey, a well known writer from this area said it right when he said these words about this area in the introduction to his book Desert Solitare...
"Do not jump into your automobile next June and rush out to the Canyon country hoping to see some of that which I have attempted to evoke in these pages. In the first place you can't see anything from a car; you've got to get out of the goddamned contraption and walk, better yet crawl, on hands and knees, over the sandstone and through the thornbush and cactus. When traces of blood begin to mark your trail you'll see something, maybe..." -Edward Abbey from the introduction to his book Desert Solitare
I can't say that even I have seen this place as he describes it but I like to get as close to that description as I can and I can only hope that I will be back here again to crawl through these rocks and canyons. Smiling, sweating, bleeding, and taking in the whole of the land around me once again. At any rate, walking up to the edge of the rim of the huge outermost shell of these canyons I welcomed myself to this Island in the Sky...
Tomorrow will be the last morning spent in this area, after this I will be heading north to the northern part of Canyonlands National Park, The Island In The Sky. Which is named all to well. The towering view of the whole of the area is nothing short of stunning and I can't wait to get up there. So with that, I am going to get some sleep and I will talk to you again sometime soon.
(I will post this entry and the one previous in the morning on my way through Moab but I am afraid you will have to wait another day or so for photos because I want to get a move on, my trip is drawing to its last few days which is both exciting and really depressing but I will get to that another day...)
I was hoping to be out backpacking while here in Canyonlands which is where I am at the moment but due to the break in and me loosing most of my camping gear I have been prevented from doing so. I had plans to set up the camera while out in the canyons and take some photos of the canyon lit by the moonlight but there is only so much I can do from here in this campground. I did take a couple of nice shots that I will share sometime soon so you can see how beautiful it can be and I hope for the moon to be out and more full while I am up in the Island in the Sky district of Canyonlands so maybe I will be able to get some nice landscape shots at night. It has been something I have fascinated me for some time, taking photos by the light of the moon that is.
While Im at it I just want to throw in how incredibly happy I am to be here in Canyonlands right now. It is easily my favorite area out here. It is just so remote and beautiful and the trails are all so challenging in the way they weave in and out of the canyons. There is so much to explore that it feels never ending. One day I will get out here with a 4WD vehicle and dig into the deep backcountry of the park but who knows when that will be. But for now I am very satisfied just taking some nice day hikes while I am here. Tomorrow I have a nice long 12ish mile hike planned out which is going to take me right into the heart of this area and I cant wait.
Thats all for now...
After a while I knew that I had a few hours to kill so I found a nice spot in the sun and sat down with the book I am reading. Other hikers came here and there and it was fascinating to me that I cold hear them coming a good half mile away at least and always had fair warning. I suddenly found the name of an album by the band Six Parts Seven called Silence Magnifies Sound unbelievably brilliant. It is so true. existing somewhere as quiet as this area in the winter really does magnify sound and you can hear everything around you so clearly.
It was fun to hear the reactions of people seeing it for the first time and here them chatter on about this and that. Guys would ramble on about random facts to their girlfriends or wives with a smugness that always made me smile. Little arguments would be had discussing how safe it was to walk round the cliffs edge to see the thing. Then there was that same initial reaction that I never tired of... "ooohhh my, it really is an impressive sight to see isn't it dear?"
A few hours pass and a few chapters pass and time was drawing near sunset and this is when I had a small handful of people show up all at once which was kind of nice in a way because it can get pretty lonely sitting around alone and to see this arch at sunset really is unlike anything you could imagine. It just comes to life. I did snap a couple of photos but there are so many hundreds of THOUSANDS of photos exactly like the ones I was taking in existence that I honestly did not take to terribly many. I will post a couple when I upload those images sometime in the next few days.
So after the sun was fully set and most hikers were well on their way it was just me there to walk back in the amazing afterglow of the suns setting. I hiked through the canyons with just that brilliant orange glow cast onto the surface of the earth around me and amazing silhouettes of canyon structures layering out towards the horizon. It was one of the most peaceful hikes I have been on yet as the sun sank deeper and deeper behind the earth. The cool air of the evening crept up and without the sun around the moisture from the land started to creep up into my nostrils filling my lungs with a fresh cool feeling as I hiked on.
So that was a great day I would say. I do have another story to tell about the hellish day I had before this one but I will wait till next time to tell it. Right now It is already 8 AM and I really want to get down to Canyonlands as soon as I can, I woke up late at 7:30 this morning after a bout with the night not letting me fall asleep. So it goes right? Right. I will talk to you guys sometime in the next few days. Until then, stay warm, stay calm, and take a moment the next time you are outside at dusk to close your eyes, take a deep breath, calm yourself, open your eyes and realize how great it is to exist.
A few minutes later I was in my car heading back down the road and over to another dirt road for the beginning of my day which I had all planned out and was to be spent playing in the Devils Playground. Seriously, its what it was called. It was fantastic! This small little area had all sorts of really fascinating structures that are difficult to describe in words. It was very much like a playground of rock with arches and little caves and all sorts of places to climb around and explore. Really great way to start my day I thought.
So after a cup of miso soup I got back in my car and started on down a long dirt road, 35 miles or so down that road in fact. About 20 or so miles in I noticed something that made me a little nervous and still does and that was my "check engine" light came on in my car... I figured there was no sense in freaking out and besides, I was really looking forward to the place I was heading so I kept on moving along. I found the smaller more rugged dirt road that lead to the trailhead and as I was driving down this road I noticed on my GPS the word 4WD Road on the screen and got a little nervous as I crept along. It ended up just being an exciting 2 mile drive down a fairly rugged dirt road where I found myself wondering if I was going to get myself stuck somewhere along the way but at this point I was simply bound and determined to continue along and get to where I was going.
Once I reached the trailhead I thanked my car for getting me there safe and packed my bag for my hike. The trailhead, for those of you keeping track, was called Dry Gulch and the dirt road I came in on was Hole In The Rock Road which cut straight through the eastern part of the grand Staircase Monument. The reason I came to this spot was because I had herd there was some really great little slot canyons in the area and after a short mile (?) long hike I found myself at the mouth of the first slot canyon.
The first canyon that I wandered through made me forget any and all worries I may have had and replaced them with a feeling of awe as I wound my way through the slot canyon. This first one was on average about 4-8 feet across and smaller in some places. The walls on either side were somewhere around 40 or so feet up to the surface. I love these canyons because the rock on each side of the canyon is so beautifully sculpted by water and wind and the light from the world above shining down into them always cast such a wonderful glow to them. Really beautiful stuff and amazing to wander through.
So after that I was excited to scout out the other two canyons in the area. I went around a bend and noticed a small opening that was up a steep slope and appeared to enter a small little slot canyon but from a distance it did not appear to be accessible and So I wandered on down through the main canyon. I ended up finding another slot a good ways down the trail and the entrance was a large sand covered wash and as I walked across I was admiring how flat and smooth the sand was. It was almost like red snow lying on the ground. In fact, I followed a trail of footprints out to a spot where someone had lay themselves down in the sand and made a snow angel shape, only in the sand. So it was time to head off into the slot. I immediately was excited to find that it was a very narrow canyon, the walls went up maybe 30 feet or less and the distance between the canyon walls was only about 3 feet across. Once I was a hundred feet or so into the canyon I found that I had to take off my pack to squeeze through because it continued to get more and more narrow the further along I went. Eventually I came to a point where the walls were only 1-2 feet across and So I stashed my bag in a little alcove in the rock, grabbed my camera and crammed myself through the skinniest passage yet which I had to push and pull my body through to make it. The walls of the canyon were so narrow at this point that my back and chest were both scraping along the smooth cliff walls. Part of me was a little nervous that I may get stuck crammed between the rock of the canyon but I managed to squeeze through to the other side of the pass.
It didn't really get any wider beyond that, the texture of the rock changed slightly and I still had to shimmy my way down and around the bends of the super narrow slot canyon, really a lot of fun if you ask me. I ended up at an awkward point where I had to kind of do a half split with my legs and bend my head down underneath some debris that were stuck in between the canyon walls and about 10 or 20 feet later I found that I simply could not go on because the slot made a pretty sharp ascent up a little dry waterfall and it was just to narrow for me to climb up it to continue. So I made my way back through taking photos along the way.
At this point I was really happy with the way the day was heading and on the way back down the trail I decided to investigate that little slot that I saw which was accessible with a bit of climbing. So I ditched the pack once again, grabbed my camera and headed up this slick smooth rock to the slot above. I could tell that people had been up there before because of black smudge marks from shoes smearing against the slick rock to scramble up to the slot. As soon as I pulled myself up into the slot I was so happy to have checked it out because as it turned out it was a slot that I had read about online and wanted to see while I was out here called Peek-a-Boo Slot or something like that. It was very dramatic with its curvy walls and empty pools where water flows when it rains. There was also a double arch across the top of the slot which was really neat looking. The slot canyon was a very short one but rewarding because of the really neat looking curves and arches and holes to climb in and out of.
So at this point I hiked back up to my car and it was only 1 in the afternoon and so I had a whole afternoon ahead of me so I made the decision to drive on down the highway because I did not want to put my car through anymore rough dirt roads after that little check engine light came into my life. So I headed north to get to the next highway I needed to get to to make my way out towards moab and canyonlands. This highway quickly became the most beautiful drive I have made on the trip so far. It wound around and made its way up through canyons and all the way up to the peak of one range and made its way along the top edge of this canyon/mountain range leaving a really really amazing view to one side of me as I drove. Realllly amazing. I noticed at this point that whenever I stopped to hop out of my car it was getting really really cold out and clouds had been present all day long. I did not think anything of this until the highway I was on (12) started heading up in elevation. And when I say up I mean up. I climbed up the road in my car and thought to myself eesh, this just keeps going up and up and it started to get to the point where I was driving through low lying clouds. A quick glance at my GPS told met that I was climbing fast and the higher I got above sea level the more and more clouds came out to play with me and the windier it got. Eventually I was driving on snow through this windy mountain pass and I stopped when I noticed a sign that said peak elevation or something like that and I found that I was 9600 feet above sea level and when I stepped out of my car to snap a couple of photos I was nearly blown over the wind was gusting so much. FUN! So I hopped back into my car now that I was frozen by the chilly windy air and kept on driving. I had made it that far, why stop there? I made my way further into the mountain and the snow started to pile up on the highway and my speed started so slow as it was getting pretty hazardous to be driving on a road I didnt know, alone, in a mini blizzard all while night was creeping up right behind me.
So that was all well and exciting to drive through snow like that and as I was driving across the peak I noticed the markers on the side of the road had long orange poles on them sticking up a good 15 feet into the air and I realized that this was so that snow plows could make their way down the road if they could not see the road. pretty smart I thought to myself and I found that I was not looking to be inside that snow pile that the plow came plowing through so I kept on moving along down the road.
Eventually I found my way tot he bottom of the pass and the snow cleared right up and I was out of harms way. A nice sigh of relief was in order. I stopped to top off my gas thank and asked the gas station worker advice on how to make my way over to Moab and she pointed out a route that kept me at lower elevations to avoid going through more of that snow and mess.
And that is what I did and now I am stopped in a national park called Capitol Reef, one of the northern most parts of it. I drove through the park in the dark of the night so I have yet to see it but I think I have been through here before and I think I remember it being pretty nice to I am looking forward to spending a little time here tomorrow.
On a last note before I wrap up another to long post, I found that this camp is right next to a stable with horses roaming a field and so I walked up to the fence and had the chance to say hello to a horse and pet its warm snout before climbing back in here for the night. A nice way to end a long day or exploring.
Sorry for the super long post everyone. Talk to you again next time...
song of the moment: "Loro" by the band Pinback
I spent the first half of my day today in Kodachrome Basin where I got in a couple nice hikes and took a much needed shower in the campground there. I was one of two people that I saw in the park this morning so I pretty much had the place to myself. It seems the further away from Zion and Bryce canyons I go the less people are around. In a way it is really nice and it really is an amazing thing to exist in an area of nearly perfect silence. Everything you don't normally hear is amplified. The different sounds your boots make as you walk along different terrains. The sound of a birds wings as it flies overhead. If I listen closely I can hear the sand and leaves on the ground drifting along in the breeze. Music that I listen to seems much more personal like I am sitting there with the musicians as they are singing their songs.
But with this solitude I can't help but feel lonely from time to time and the occasional Jack Rabbit or deer is welcome company. Still, even loneliness is something that feels good in a way being out here. There is something to be said about being somewhere like this alone. It's a feeling that I won't soon forget.
So the later half of my day I spend driving around in a relatively new National Park called Grand Staircase National Monument. Evidently this huge piece of land contained some of the last land to be explored and charted in the US. I hear from the locals that there has been a good amount of trouble stirred up by the government sweeping in and declaring all of this land to be a National Monument. I don't know to many details so I'm not sure what my stance would be on the matter, all in all its pretty fascinating to me.
At the moment I am sitting in my car/tent at the end of a short dirt road that appears to be a nice place to park for the night. In ths area there are hundreds of roads to explore and probably 99 percent of them are dirt roads many of which can not be accessed without 4 Wheel drive capabilities on your vehicle and my car is far from 4 wheel drive. At least I have a new set of tires on it because I spent the last hour or so driving around and down some roads that probably were not meant for little cars like mine. Even still I could not help but want to keep driving and driving through the dirt and snow. Every mystery road that I saw veer off the main dirt road was one which I simply had to explore. I did end up at this great spot though right near the edge of a cliff that overlooks a huge amount of this area within the monument and here at sunset it is really beautiful.
I think a lot of this trip so far I have found myself in positions where I will be hiking or driving and I find that I can't stop myself from going just a little further, then just a little further, then just a little further. Sometimes this takes me places that put me at risk like up a hill that is just a little to steep to feel totally comfortable climbing, or scrambling up a canyon with a steep floor of loose rock causing the occasional slip down a few inches but quick glance back down to the bottom always gets me to slow down. I'm pushing my limits just enough to satisfy this weird mix of curiosity and adrenaline flowing through my blood. It has taken me to a few places that I may never see again in the way that I have seen them so I don't regret a minute of it.
It's a shame the trip has had to be cut a bit shorter than I would have liked it to be. I am keeping a pretty tight eye on my money because after buying back enough gear to make this trip work I found myself with just enough to get around a select amount of places and not every single place I may have wanted to go. This said, with each compromise I have made I have found myself in a place that who knows if I would have seem otherwise. I figure that even in a somewhat desperate time every turn that I take and every hike that I go on leads me somewhere amazing and new. Even places I have seen before feel new with a coat of snow and without all of the tourism and flocks of people you might find in the area during the peek traveling season out here.
After taking this trip I know I will be here again. It has woken my desire to see all I can see in the world and It has reminded me just how much I miss being out hiking and camping, if thats what you can call this strange in car camping trip. Oh what I would do for a full size backpack to go on a couple of longer treks. My Spire Meta bag has filled in as my backpack and has been great. I love that bag.
So anyways, I will leave it at that for now. Just another little update and to be honest, I'm not sure when I will find internet again. the deeper I go into this state the smaller the towns get. I hope that average readers of the site that come for the desktops have not been to bored by my ramblings. Don't worry guys, in 2 or 3 weeks things will settle back into what they were, or maybe not. Who knows, Maybe I will start up that new site that I have been talking about. Who knows. OK, OK, thats enough, bye for now...
Song of the moment: "Moon" by Alva Noto + Ryuichi Sakamoto from the album 'Insen'
UPDATE: the images are now all slightly larger... slightly
(from near las vegas. can anyone guess which casino that light is coming from? by the way, thats my car there..)
(sorry this is so dark and blurry, this is zion at night)
(part of the trail leading up to angels landing)
(the ridge leading out to the peak)
(a peak down next to the trail)
(one last trail shot to angels landing)
(view from the top)
(on the way back down)
(my friend the deer)
(messing around before going to sleep)
(another day another trail)
(paying my respects for...)
(a slot canyon i found)
(the road through the canyon)
(still getting used to sleeping in the car...)
(last remains of my little campfire)
Well that is the abridged version, I hope that you can get an idea of the area from these shots, talk to you again sometime soon!
p.s - song of the moment: "13 Angels Standing Guard 'Round The Side Of Your Bed" by a band called 'A Silver Mt. Zion' ... easily one of the most beautiful songs in existence and perfect for this place...
Driving into Zion was like magic. It brought back all sorts of feelings and memories from past visits and seeing the area covered in snow was something that was really unique seeing as the other times I have been were in the summer months when this area is hot hot hot. I talked to a park ranger to check on trail closings from the winter weather and was pleased to find that only a couple were closed but I was told to watch my step on any of the hikes because snow and ice while walking near the edge of some 1000 odd feet drop is not all that safe with your eyes closed. So I decided to dig right in and I picked a hike that I have been on before called Angels Landing. It is called this for good reason. It is a huge cliff that rises out into the middle of the main canyon here in the park. The only catch is that it is a very strenuous hike involving a huge ascent that takes you hundreds of feet up. The higher I got on the trail the more my muscles moaned at me for being neglected for so long (I'm a bit out of shape is have to admit). Also with elevation came temperature change and with that came more and more snow and ice. Thankfully most of it was packed snow and therefore was not all that slick to walk on.
On this trail the first 2 miles of the trail wind up the side of a cliff which wares you out but is really the easy part when it comes down to it. The last half a mile is where things really get interesting, especially in this weather. You walk along the crest of the rock face to get to the top of the rock in the middle of the canyon. This involves scrambling up rocks and using chains bolted into the rock to keep you balanced as you climb and climb. It is actually a lot of fun in the summer, its just you, the rock, the chain, and you glance to your side to look over the edge of a cliff that drops off hundreds of feet below you. The trick in the winter turns out is all of the snow on the peak that you are walking on. So all of the convenient places to stick your foot as you climb are packed down with snow leaving little snowy slopes as foot holds. This is where the chains really come in handy. I found that its best to kind of grip the chain and pull yourself with your arms and use your body weight as leverage to keep all of your weight on your feet which are standing on those slick little pockets of snow as you climb up. So you really have to watch your footing and take it pretty slow to prevent your feet from slipping out from underneath you and tumbling down to your... I wont say it. kind of freaky to think to much about it. But MAN was it fun.
So I made it to the top and everything melted away. the view from this peak is unbelievable, you turn around 360 degrees and this enormous canyon surrounds you on all sides. It is really inspiring and was totally worth the trek up in the snow. I brought along a little stick of incense with me and lit it and let it burn down into a patch of snow as a way to pay homage to the beauty of the land I was climbing. It is such an amazing thing to be perched up on a rock that is bigger than a skyscraper. This huge mass of stone jetting out of the earth. Such a beautiful thing and I had to make sure to pay my respects to this wonderful creation the earth has given us. I figure as tricky as it was to get up there I may as well thank the rock for safe passage to the top right? Right.
The climb back down proved a bit more difficult and required me to kind of repel down some of the more slippery slopey areas using the chain as my rope and kind of half slide my way down to safety. Really great but I would not recommend this to anyone else unless they are really comfortable and understanding of their capabilities while on trails.
I ended up hiking more along the canyons rim on another trail that splintered off from Angels Landing which was great because I had a chance to hike down some truly snow covered trail. By the time I needed to turn around to get back to my car before dark I found myself hiking through a good 6-12 inches of snow! I love snow and it really thrilled me to no end to be hiking in one of my favorite places on earth in the snow. Really truly a beautiful experience all around and although my body is crying right now from that exhausting hike I am planning to go on an even longer one tomorrow with an earlier start to give myself plenty of time. Its a hike that I have not made before but I am really looking forward to it. Another one straight up the side of the cliff but aren't all good hikes like this? The more strain on your body the more amazing the view I figure. Then after that I will most likely spend one more day and go on an even longer hike all the way down and around the east rim of the canyon but that is all just in my plans, well see how my body holds up.
So that is all for now, I took plenty of photos although I will have to admit that taking pictures was not really what I was focused on while I was up there. I think on this first hike I just felt so overwhelmed by the fact that I really made it that snapping photos was more of an afterthought. Still though, I took a couple HUNDRED I think so no worries seeing what I went through today. Just dont expect any awards for them or anything. I will try and get those posted sometime soon after I go through them a little bit.
OK, thats all for now guys, I will report back again soon so wish me luck on my coming hikes and I will talk to you again in a few days. (I will try and get some photos up before then but no promises, sorry. By for now...
Song of the moment is called "Chimeras" by Tim Hecker, it is hauntingly beautiful song that has put my mind at ease more than once while out here and is highly recommended.
Also, the album I found myself listening to while hiking today is called "Plays Pajama Pop Pour Vous" by Lullatone and is really really beautiful and simple. I think it has got to be the most perfect album ever made for waking up in the morning...
Imagine, you are in San Francisco, for the first time in your life. For those of you who don't know, its a large city, never ending buildings, cars and people at every single turn. You find yourself at Macworld in the city and you buy a new toy, a battery pack for your iPod so you will always have music with you on a trip you are on. This trip is not any ordinary trip. You are 3 thousand miles from your home, your life is in your one little car. Everything you brought along to survive. So after a few days in the city and a couple days exploring Macworld it comes to the last day of Macworld and you have to get over there before it closes because part of the battery that you bought is missing from the packaging. So you arrive at 4pm to find hundreds moving away from the conference center. Pushing through the crowd you fear the worst and wonder, it couldn't possible be closed yet, right? You go ahead and wander all the way to the entrance and notice a security guy standing at the door. Eye's wide and watchful. As you approach the door to the floor a big gloved hand goes up and you show him your entrance badge but he explains it is closed. You make up a lie and say you have left something in there that it is very important and you need to go grab it. "Sorry sir, there is absolutely no way you can enter." So you head back to the escalator and step on with the pack of other people and you feel totally defeated, of course this would happen. Of course. You would think something as simple as a clip for an iPod accessory would not have the ability to break someone down but today, this day, it just so happened that it can... hang on a second, let me take a step back, rewind.
This morning, after 3 great days in the city and a little over a week on the road you find yourself ready to leave the city and head for the land you came out here to see. It was the beginning of the rest of your life. As you leave the apartment you were staying at you walk down the street thinking of the amazing places you are going to see, you close your eyes, feel a breeze and imagine you are there atop the edge of a canyon in the middle of no where. The sky is wide and the landscape never ending. You open your eyes, and cross the street and as you gaze in the direction of your car, something is not quite right. Things are not as you left them. You walk to the other side of the vehicle and find that a rear window has been smashed clean out. You look to the ground to see pieces of it scattered all around and your heart sinks. Sinks down to your toes. You decide there is no reason to freak out or anything, what's done is done. You reach into the door and unlock the front door and set the belongings you have in the front seat. Walk back around to the other side and sit down into the front seat. Everything around you is a mess, everything has been tossed everywhere, your current life is there, beside you, tossed salad.
A deep breath and a moment later you step back out of your car to inspect things, the trunk is open, one window is no longer there and you start thinking of what to do next. You feel all sorts of things, betrayal from the open road for letting something like this happen, you wonder what kind of person did this, you picture a blurry figure in the night going through your things, and you feel overwhelmed by what the hell you are going to do now.
So now you are in my shoes. all of this crowded in your mind. The rest of my day has been spent sorting this mess out. Filing a police report, going through everything that was stolen, getting a new window in the car, you know, all of the obvious things. In between those things I have been wondering all sorts of things about human nature and imaging the person that would do this. I hope to myself that it was someone that will at least use some of the things that were stolen, which reminds me. I'm sure you are curious just what has gone missing. Here is a vague list of things:
My backpacking backpack which had my brand new tent inside, as well as my sleeping bag, sleeping mat, camping stove, an additional down blanket, stuff sacks and other little things. One of two bags of clothing which appeared to have been gone through and a new pair of pants which were insulated for cold weather, a pair of fancy fleece long underwear, 2 new long sleeve fleece shirts, a towel, a stick of deodorant, and another long sleeve shirt or two (pretty much all of my cold weather clothes for camping). A brown wooden box which was a gift was taken but not before all of its contents (shells and stones and items of sentimental value) were dumped onto the floor. A bag full of about 20 dollars worth of change for laundry and whatever else. A power strip along with a power converter which converted power from a cigarette lighter to your average power outlet (so I could use my laptop out on the road for photo management and whatnot). A small box containing misc. tech things like batteries, a cable or two, an M-Audio Trigger Finger Midi drum pad controller for making music while out on the road, a set of folding iPod speakers, and an iPod car charger along with a special cup holder that was used as an iPod mount. A couple of small green bags, one of which contained nothing but spices for cooking, and the other contained various audio cables, an ipod digital camera adapter, and a few other odds and ends of things. Then there is the fun part, my camera bag. Thankfully I had my 5d, my 35mm 1.4L lens, 3 of 4 2gb cards, and two batteries with me but... along with my camera bag (a great bag which was a gift to me recently) went a Canon 50mm 1.4 lens, a Canon 50mm 1.8 lens, a Canon 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 USM lens, a Sigma 80-300mm lens, a couple of lens filters, lens/camera cleaning equipment, an older Canon EOS film camera body, the manuel to the 5d, 2 battery chargers, misc cables, and also a pair of 200 dollar sennheiser HD 25 Headphones, which I really miss... There were also other odds and ends of things missing and things I probably haven't even realized are gone but thats the bulk of it. Fun, no?
So thankfully I had my Spire bag which had my laptop (two of them actually), cables, external photo hard drive, DS, and all sorts of other necessities, like chargers and ipods and notebooks, and whatever else.
So from here I will do what I can to rebuild some of my basic needs like warm clothing layers, sleeping bag, camera battery charger, and press on. These things happen in the world and it is things like this that make you question so much about life and humanity and the state of things in the world we live in today. Rather than sit and dwell the best thing I can do is to simply press on and just dive into the trip once again. It is going to take more than a broken window and a bunch of my stuff to break my spirit. I have worked to hard to long to let this get to me to much. I have a great bunch of friends and family that have my back in all of this and I have to thank them for helping to push me through. After all this, I still find that I really love this city. After driving back through it today I still find it to be a very welcoming place. somehow in a way. I can have some sympathy for those in the world that are at rock bottom and have to turn to these sorts of tricks to get by but only a little, im still pretty upset about this whole thing... So at any rate, I am picking up and moving on once again to the great and vast canyons of the american southwest. Wish me luck!
P.S - If you ever have your window smashed in the San Francisco area, I recommend the guys at US. Auto Glass Center ( www.usautoglasscenter.com ). They were super nice about it all and did a great job.
I cant help but feel grateful because of the support I have seen from people around me both strangers and family, friends and so from that I find myself making sure to treat others as nicely and gratefully as I can and I suggest you do the same, pass it on. Every bit helps in this world.
Till next time folks...
(what a way to start a day!)
The drive was a long one and I finally feel settled and ready for the month I have ahead of me. This is just the beginning. So far I have been getting into camps after sunset which has been fun. It is always strange to drive at night when there is no city around because you are just driving into the black and when that happens you could imagine yourself being anywhere in the world traveling down a dark deserted road. Whenever morning comes around the sun wakes me in my tent and I get to head outside and see the place that I traveled to for the first time. Its strange really. Its like when you get a gift and the person giving the gift says, "close your eyes and put out your hands". At night my eyes are closed as a drive into a camp and in the morning I can open my eyes to see the gift of a new landscape awaiting me.
I spent my first day without a destination exploring a beautiful area north of San Francisco which was a mountain area right on the edge of the ocean. This allowed me to see the whole bay area around here and I felt like it was a perfect place to really start my trip. I ended up driving through the area with no map or any real idea of where I was going which was great. When I came to a fork in the road I pretty much just picked the direction that seemed like it would lead me somewhere nice and somehow every turn that I took was perfect and I ended up down on a rocky beach next to the ocean. Waves pounded the rocks as they swept in to the beach. I ended up being on the wrong rock at the wrong time and found the bottom half of me soaking wet. This gave me a chance to just sit and dry out in the sun.
So now here I am, in the dark once again, at another new camp writing this just to get caught up a bit with the site and I am going to head into my tent here in a minute, close my eyes, and wait until morning brings me the next day of this journey.
Talk again when I can, see you soon!
Driving through the snow in New Mexico last night was fun. I always compare driving through snow to flying through space only the snowflakes are stars. Its hypnotic, the road and you have to be careful driving late at night after a day of staring and singing along to music and thinking and scratching down notes while speeding along down the interstate. I think I am locked into a state of excitement and I don't think that I will feel settled until I see the Pacific ocean at my feet. San Francisco is still a couple of days away but I can feel it calling my way. Once I feel a bit more settled I think I will try and write out more of a journal and upload a couple of photos of my progress so sit tight, I will be back soon, promise.
There is a guy singing over in the corner with his guitar, i love this song, I think I will record with my little built in mic for a few minutes and post that here with the post if it comes out at all.
I have so many things going through my head its hard to keep track. It can be overwhelming traveling like this. It has put my mind on overdrive and I am loving it. I have not felt this creative in forever. So at any rate, (holds up drink and shouts quietly to the masses with his keys) heres to safe travels, plenty of good stories and photos and memories to last and drive me to a new beginning of some sort.
Talk to you again soon...
p.s - The recording came out terrible and I'm to lazy to break out my mics right now so just picture yourself in a little coffee shop in a town you have never been too late one night and a guy is playing his guitar and singing over in the corner.
p.s.s... - song of the day: Woke Up New by The Mountain Goats... look it up, buy it, whatever you need to do, just go listen. I think I will have a new song every post on this trip for you to listen to that somehow reflects something somehow of what I am thinking about. This song was from a couple days back when things got started... ok I'm really going now.
Speaking of my trip, I mentioned it in the podcast once but I don't believe I have officially let readers in on what is going on with it. On Thursday I will be departing for what I am planning on being a six week trek across the country on my own. My main destinations are mostly in the Colorado Plateau (four corners) area in the southwest and hiking/backpacking my way through all of the beautiful canyons of the area in the chilly solitude of the winter. I am planning on camping in a tent the majority of my time on the road but I'm sure an occasional hotel will be thrown in for a shower and some warmth here and there. I am also considering heading all the way out towards California to San Francisco and crashing the Mac-World Expo but we will just have to wait and see about that.
The southwestern US is an area that I have visited 4 times now I believe but never have I been there but certainly not in the winter like this. It will just be me, my car, and whatever belongings I end up bringing with me.
So this said, I'm sure you must realize that I will not be able to access the internet all that often to post updates here on the site but when I do stumble upon a random hi-fi spot you can expect updates and plenty of photos here on the site from my trip. I am hoping that I will have some stories and photos that will make up for the infrequency of my posts during the trip. You can expect some nice desktops from the road as well as possible podcasts and things. It should be quite an adventure and I hope to let you guys in on it as much as I can.
So If you don't see posts all to often don't think I am closing up shop, I will simply be out in the remote areas of the Southwestern United States. So wish me luck and I will talk to you guys again sometime soon!
I keep having to wipe the drool off the keyboard when this image pops up on screen, soon it will be mine, im selling my laptop to raise money for it. Anyone in the market for a powerbook G4 1.whatever ghz? Keep an eye out around here, I'm having a sale soon, prints, ipods, lockets of hair.. ok not that far but a sale none the less so look out.
This little beauty is like my dream lens, 50mm 1.2 with an L build quality... ahhhhhh... It isn't available till november and I think the 85 will come first.
Id also like to experiment with a nice tilt shift lens and this one appears to be a beauty.
Ive been debating on a second camera for some time now and it will either be a film camera or a nice compact camera like this that still gives me control over exposure. Something for times when I don't want to lug around the big ol' 5d. No RAW support on this G7 here but meh... its last here on the list for a reason.
While I'm rambling here, I have not been reading the Gizmodo blog all to long but is it always this badly written? seems like the writers are really really trying hard to be as sarcastic as possible, you know, to add a bit of humor to their blog but they always just manage to come across as dicks in my mind. Maybe these commenters are just emulating their geek news overloards. Engadget is at least has better writing than Gizmodo but they still have there share of condescending sarcasm floating around.
Anyways... back to your regularly scheduled posting...
Head over to his website and head straight down to his artist statement at the bottom of his main navigation to get the overall feel of what was said.
Ill start with the podcast. I know for a fact that I will be changing the name of the podcast soon to "Sound of Living" It is in a verse of a song that will be included on my next music podcast which I will be releasing soon. I know that it is not the most regularly updated podcast out there and I understand that that is a big no no among those who regularly listen to podcasts butto tell you the truth, I honestly dont care. I will continue to update it and use the broad range of shows which mostly include soundscape recordings and music episodes. I am still looking for an easier way to record high quality stereo soundscapes and I think this will end up being fixed when I get some nice little mics that I have my eye on. So anyway you can still keep an eye on the feed for new episodes to pop up here and there and when you do see them dont forget to stop by and leave a comment to let me know what you thought.
Up next is the desktop section, the bread and butter of the site. I think 90 percent of the visitors of the site came for the desktop images. I love sharing appropriate images with everyone and handing them out for anyone to use at the highest resolution I feel comfortable releasing them. I've mentioned this in the past and I will mention this again, Its nice to know that people all around the world enjoy my images enough to include them in their everyday life. One of these days I will have prints available. Anyway I wanted to mention that I would like to take the desktop section of the site and expand it to become a multi blogger blog and get some other people involved by bringing them into the twisetdsun.net family or maybe start a new site for desktops and just make this into simply my personal blog and podcast. When I say get others involved I mean hand pick other photographers to come and post desktops on the site on their own. Preferably from around the world. I do have a few photographers in mind but who knows if they would be interested, I've never talked to any of them. So thats what I've been thinking on that front. What do you guys think?
And onto the blog here. Depending on what happens with the desktop section I will be either keeping this at the front end of the site or move it back and let the desktops become the front end of the site again. I'm really not sure yet. If I can come up with a new identity for the desktop page I may start up a new site for them which is something I've talked about for a long time now. I'm thinking something similar to 'Sound of Living' but something to do with light. I have started a new personal page on my .mac account that I have been posting more everyday photos that I don't normally post here on the site and I called that Light of Life but that sounds kind of cheesy. I don't know, I'm probably over thinking this. I do that sometimes...
(IMG_0001.jpg was the first shot on the new 5d. After a quick check I found that I had shot well over 15000 photos on my 20d, heres to many more)
Well I have had my 5d for a while now and I could not be happier with it. All of the shortcomings of my 20d have suddenly been forgotten and replaced with beautiful clarity. The combination of the full frame sensor and my new 35mm 1.4L is wonderful. I was somewhat worried that the 5d would take some time to master and learn how to use but thankfully the way it functions is very similar to the 20d. All of the buttons are in familiar places and for the most part all of my custom functions that I am used to having around are still there which was a relief. It's interesting how something as simple as a new camera can cause such a ripple in my curiosity to learn more and more and more about photography and light. It is such a beautiful thing!
I find that when I hit my exposures spot on the focus with this camera is so crystal clear it gives me a whole new goal in my shooting which is to master the art of the exposure and get that rush of zooming in 100 percent and seeing that crisp beautiful color and detail. I have recently been reading the first in a three part series of books written by the late Ansel Adams and it has gotten me to brush up a good bit on various types of cameras and the abilities of each and the part that I am really enjoying is the fact that the book is obviously written purely on analogue photography. It has gotten me to become more and more fascinated by the nitty gritty. The little things. The things that make a great photo not only a work of art but a perfect balance of control over the exposure and control of the light in moment in time I am capturing. I have started to look at everything around me in layers and compositions. Ill tell you one nice perk of seeing things this way, the light of the world just looks so damn beautiful to me all of the time.
So anyways, it's been great getting a chance to work with some higher class gear. It has defiantly inspired me to push on and I am really excited about continuing to learn and grow as a photographer. Thanks for reading along through the process. should be fun...
update: i just had to post this one too, it makes me laugh out loud whenever i look at it...
It's official-- it's been 2.5 years of Ferris Buellering, today marking 30 months of FBD celebratory shenanigans, i.e. generally living life to its fullest potential as much as humanly possible, because as Ferris says, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it” - Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
Some other little bits of wisdom to carry us through the day:
1) Step out of your comfort zone! Do something stimulating and new and exciting!
"You're not dying, you just can't think of anything good to do." - Ferris
2) Find some peace and quiet, go take a stroll in nature, look around and be silent... (or try some hang gliding perhaps?)
"Anything is peaceful from one thousand, three hundred and fifty-three feet." - Ferris
3) Believe in yourself! Cheesy but ultimately the bottom line -- you can do whatever you want in this world. Now in honor of Ferris Bueller day, let's get out there and get to it.
A person should not believe in an "-ism," he should believe in himself. I quote John Lennon, "I don't believe in Beatles, I just believe in me." ~Ferris Bueller
Have a great day and for pete's sake, have some fun!
Last night at work, 7 hardcore bands. This was the hadliner. Almost a desktop but not quite.
Here we have one of my favorite places on this big ball of rock. I am longing for it and miss it more than you know. Canyonlands, Utah. Seen here is my favorite camping area there. Another park that I am in love with in Utah is called Zion National Park. It is equally amazing. There is a trail called angels landing that is simply amazing at the peak and then there are the narrows and the backcountry area is wonderful. This satellite image does not do it justice, maybe sometime in the coming months I will be able to get out there for a couple weeks. Thats the plan anyways...
For those of you with Google Earth, use this file here to wander the area via satellite. doc.kml
shot from a car window...
quick snapshot taken while walking down a staircase...
another car window shot...
i love pinstripes...
This projector screen was made from layers of cut fabric which gave it a 3d effect that was really cool.
A couple of performers brought out some live instrumentation. (btw, that cardinal mic there makes a great horn mic)
The raven makes for a great horn mic as well...
Calmer put on an amazing set with live drums and guitar.
MachineDrum played a brilliant set that really started the whole party off right.
The aftermath of the night can be summed up in this photo. The ceiling, as seen below, was rusty and with every huge 120db+ bass hit it rained down dust. This was annoying for djs because of skipping records but it kept the energy level in the crowd even higher knowing that the sound was so intense that the roof was literally being blown off.
more ceiling dust on the amps..
There was a ton of modern art down on the first floor of the space, one piece was this sharpie marker suspended on stings which were controlled by a motor and drew on the wall...
I will be heading back up to NYC for a show this weekend and I suggest anyone up in the area that likes electronic music even just a little bit come out for an amazing event called the Brunswick Art Project. The roster of artists performing is huge with over 40 musicians on three different stages. Just to hint at a few here... Calmer, Helios, MachineDrum, Lusine, Ryan Elliott, and plenty more. I am among the 'plenty more' category there. For those of you who don't know, I am a member of the electronic music duo, A Drop in Silence and we will be playing on stage B at 10pm if I have been told right.
Not only will I be performing, I am also bringing up three PA systems (speakers and whatnot) for the main stages. I can only hope that what I am bringing will be enough for these rooms and I am pretty sure I will have more than enough to fill the rooms but still, it's quite the responsibility and I am honored to be a part of the event.
If any readers do manage to come out I will floating about between rooms, baby-sitting the sound systems during the night. Wish me luck!
I am a huge fan of Christopher Nolan's films which had me hooked after Memento, Following, Insomnia and Batman Returns. His newest film is looks like one of those movies that remind you that there is plenty of original ideas left out there to make into a film. The Prestige
Michel Gondry has got to be one of my very favorite directors, his creativity in both writing and film making is unbelievable so I was xcited to hear of a new film of his... The Science of Sleep
I love Zach braff and the character he plays on the TV show Scrubs, after seeing this trailer I knew it was a movie I wanted to see but I'm not really sure why. Was it the cast? Writing? or maybe just the slick design of the page that the trailer is on... The Last Kiss
I am not really the biggest fan of martial arts films but this one has gotten my interest, it just looks like an amazing film... Jet Li’s Fearless
Ever since Steve Carells role in Anchorman, The 40 Year Old Virgin, and The TV series, The Office I just cant seem to get enough of the guy and his role in this movie looks like a strange match that I don't want to miss... Little Miss Sunshine
I love these movies, I know that the writing is not at all perfect but the acting, directing, and the world that was created for these movies really drew me in. Take a look at the sets feature on this link, its hard to believe what they went through in the filming of this movie... Pirates of the Caribbean 2
Anyone care to guess all of the stuff here? I will award the person that correctly lists everything (product and manufacturer) here something. (...or maybe nothing but do you really want to take that chance? were talking prizes and glory here!)
Well a couple of days ago I ended up going backwards a bit and getting a new Nintendo DS. It was calling to me with its Apple like design and it's dual screen design. I got the "game" Brain Age along with it and couldn't be happier. What a cool system and what a great game! I have a pretty lazy old brain according to the game so well see how I progress through time. So anyways, how about some photos of the thing already! Well here you go...
(in somewhat of a chronological order..)
Steve Currnutte - Think Again
They Might Be Giants - Flood
Beck - Mellow Gold
They Might Be Giants - Apollo 18
The Eels - Beautiful Freak
Deftones - Adrenaline
Stone Temple Pilots - Purple
Smashing Pumpkins - Siamese Dream
Tool - Aenema
They Might Be Giants - John Henry
Tom Petty - Wildflowers
Nine Inch Nails - The Downward Spiral
The soundtrack to the movie Suburbia
Sleater Kinney - Dig Me Out
Beastie Boys - Ill Communication
Radiohead - O.K Computer
Portishead - Dummy
Elliott Smith - XO
Aphex Twin - Richard D. James Album
Elliott Smith - Either/ Or
Autechre - ep7 and lp5
Aphex Twin - Selected Ambient Works 2
Squarepusher - Big Loda and Feed Me Weird Things
Mute: A Hush Records Compilation
Mercury Program/ Maserati - Confines of Heat
The soundtrack to the movie Lost In Translation
OK OK, ill stop there, remember, this list was my attempt at making a list of albums that were stepping stones in my musical evolution and in turn the history of me. I could trace my whole live backwards in songs that represent different times in my life. So anyways, back to my original point that was brought on by an episode of Pete and Pete. The episode was all about one of the Petes accidentally discovering music by coming across a band playing in a garage that was playing a song that ended up soaking into his mind. The whole episode is spent trying to find that song again so he could live that moment over. Sorry, that was a terrible description of the episode and I think that this post is taking a nose dive fast!
Let me try this again, Pete and Pete is a great show! It only made it three seasons which is a shame. The writing in the series is great and I think that the show holds it's own even in todays standards, I could see myself getting hooked on these all over again. Every episode contains some sort of wonderful life lesson but they are not at all obvious. The series is like a guide to living a happy life only with bizarre characters getting into stranger situations. That's all really, just thought I'd recommend a show.
Im about to hop in the car and go to Orlando, FL for a trade show called Infocomm for the next 5 days or so and as with any traveling I do there is no guarantee that I will have access to the internet although I'm sure I will find it around somewhere which is a good thing seeing as I have quite a few things I would like to post. At any rate everyone have a nice day while I'm out driving the for next 12 hours and I will see you again soon.
So thats all for now. there is a quick new favorite up in the music section so check it out. I hope to throw a few more of those up soon and hey, who knows. Maybe a desktop or two. I hope everyone is doing well and thanks for sticking with me through this period of less frequent posting! Talk to you again soon.
For the most part my mail app catches most of my junk mail but from time to time I get a few unwelcome messages that have to head off into the junk pile manually. The message above is one of the odd messages that sneaks through from time to time. The trick is that while I try and make sense out of that message an image is loading touting all sorts of various drugs and things at black market prices. Fun Fun Fun. just thought I would share one of the stranger ones that I have seen here on the weblog.
(megaband - playing the soundtrack to megaman II while someone on stage played and beat the whole game in under 40 minutes! It is the same group as Contraband which I have mentioned before here on the site)
Well the job at the club has been a challenge. It took a lot of work to get it running as smoothy as it is and I hope to see the final instal system to get in there soon. Sorry for not posting as much recently, a lot of the free time I had is being taken up with all sorts of things happening around me and having my hand in all sorts of different projects has caused my life to bottleneck to some extent. There is a new desktop up, a really simple one that I hope some of you will enjoy, I like the warmth in the colors, it feels cozy being on my desktop.
In other news, I look forward to getting some new posts up soon and getting some new photos together for desktops. I have a nice podcast waiting to make an appearance soon which will be nice I think so all in all this is another one of those, thanks for being patient with me, I will have some new stuff up soon kind of posts. If anyone would like to contribute to the site please let me know, you know, photos, interesting things around the web, ambient landscape recordings, music reviews, id be up for trying out some guest writers if anyone would be interested.
till next time then!
(thats me on the left there above)
(a secret life)
(donna summer aka. jason forest)
Fiday and Saturday night I will be over in Chapel Hill, NC for the Signal Festival, a two day electronic music festival. There are a lot of great artists performing at 4 or 5 different clubs all around Chapel Hill and it should be a lot of fun. I will be performing with a friend of mine as A Drop In Silence at the Nightlight Saturday at 9:30pm if any readers are in the area and want to come check it out. For more information on the festival check out their website at www.signalfest.com.
Needless to say, there might not be an update here for a couple of days but I will be back soon with some newdesktops that I have for the friends section of the site. I hope everyone has a great weekend and I will see you all again soon!
If anything, this is pretty reassuring to me as a camera owner knowing that it can survive such a fall. I am generally pretty rough with the things I own and I expect them to hold up under pressure. Ah, and for those of you wondering what kind of camera I use it is currently a Canon 20D which is simply an amazing little gem of a camera. I love Canon cameras, especially their digital offerings, in my opinion they have the best digital cameras around so anyone in the market for a new digital camera. I would suggest Canon.
In the mean time have a peak into a show I mixed recently featuring bands 'The Drift' and 'Man Man'. It was a really great show and I had a chance to try out my favorite new mic the ev/blue Raven as a vocal mic and ill tell you they make amazing live vocal mics! Really rich sounding vocals and I barley had to touch the eq at all as far as feedback is concerned. I will have a hard time deciding between using them for guitar amps or vocal mics at future shows! I also had the chance to see what EV's new ZX1 speakers can do which are these cute little 8" speakers. I paired them with a powered 15" sub and man did they sound great! They really put out a lot of volume for such a small speaker, I was amazed that they could compete with the band because they had a really loud stage presence. I remember before the show cranking them up and one of the band members couldn't believe that they got so incredibly loud and still sounded as good as they did. I remember him saying something along the lines of " Damn! where are you hiding the rest of the speakers! Those things are Loud as ____" Ha, Oh how I love the things I get myself into. I just love the feeling I get when I hear a great sounding mix from a simple rig at a live show. So anyways, on with some photos form the show.
Oh and here is one extra image from a night ago when I set up a make shift photo studio to shoot a publicity shot for this mexican group called kstigo that I have done a few odds and ends of design work for in the past. It was pretty fun to shoot them, they all dressed up in matching clothes for the shot and got in some great poses for me to shoot. Really nice guys! The lighting was some really bright stage lighting that was shining onto some partitions that had some reflective tarps draped over them. Thanks must be given to my dad for that idea, it worked out really well.
See you again soon with some new content.
I had the chance to run the sound for a really cool show this past sunday. It was the closing night of a film festival and they had a group called the Alloy Orchestra play a show. What makes the group unique is the type of performance they give. There was a huge movie screen set up in the auditorium they played in from the previous showings in the film festival and what the band did was play the soundtrack to an old silent film. From what I can tell on their website they have quite a few films that they can perform with. The film that was used the night I saw them was a pirate film and it was really amazing! The film is called The Black Pirate and is considered to be the first great pirate movie and after seeing it I can see why. It seemed to lay out the groundwork for other pirate films such as that disney film the pirates of the whatever. I would suggest you check them out if you ever see them playing a show in your area.
Have a great weekend everyone and I'll see you monday.
I love this case by the way. Cushy and puffy and comfy. It's almost like having a totally different player really. I have renamed it the cloudpod. Heres a link for more info on the case.
ok everyone, what is the significance of this wall? there may be a prize if you know?
now this is a record shop! and full of nothing but independent music.... it was a bit overwhelming to say the least.
capitol records headquarters
odd people were dressed up as movie characters for some reason here on hollywood ave. notice the stars on the sidewalk.
more halloween costumes out in front of the chinese theatre place. crazy fans or employees? you decide.
and we made a stop by chinatown which was very cool.
dinner was at beef bowl, well veggie bowl for me. mmmmm
I will write some more as soon as i get settled back at home, i have a good bit of work ahead of me after this week which is exciting. ill tell more later. until then, have a good one.
But what can you do right? Not to much longer on the flight I don't think and I don't mean to complain really, I generally love traveling on planes. Airports are always fun to wander around in and unlike most people I enjoy a nice bit of time during a transfer to another flight. I started to whittle away a bit more on the top music of "05 but I ended up feeling like just writing a bit of commentary on my trip. I just finished watching a few episodes of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex on the ol' video iPod and decided that I would save the battery for music and podcasts the rest of the flight.
There's something to talk about, Ghost in the Shell. Has anyone here ever seen this series? I absolutely loved the two movies and slowly became hooked on the TV series. I am generally really picky when it comes to any anime but for whatever reason the movies and show really conected with my mind for some reason. Maybe it's the philosopher hidden away in me that enjoys that side of the stories. (Val, if your reading this then remind me to tell you about it sometime.) I would highly recommend this to any fan of si-fi, action, or just plain good writing. Check out the movies first though because from what I have found not everyone likes the shows nearly as much as I do. I love how they have tied J.D Salanger's stories, mainly the Catcher in the Rye, into the story line.
Which brings me to another topic, my favorite books! I would still have to list The Catcher in the Rye as my old favorite but there are so many other wonderful novels out there! I guess it would be hard to pick any sort of favorite. I would reccomend anyone interested in philosophy at all to check out a book called The Solitare Mystery, I forget the authors name but its an amazing read full of thought for food or food for thought. Anyone care to mention their favorite books here? Maybe ill talk about other books sometime later on but for now it looks like my battery is running down low and I don't feel like digging out the spare. Hope I didn't bore you all to much here with this entry. I suppose by the time it's posted I will be on land.
And as I mentioned, I will be reporting nightly on anything interesting I find out at NAMM so come back soon. Till then...
i will be in NY, New York this weekend (friday night to be exact) performing with my friend matt as 'a drop in silence' (the electronic music duo i am part of) we had toured the east a few months back but missed ny some how so we are heading back up to finnish what we started.we will be playing in a club in brooklyn called the lucky cat. there will also be a couple of other local musicians playing, Ezekiel Honig and Grant. It should be a fun show in a cozy little venue in brooklyn and i am looking forward to the trip up there. im sure i will stumble across some internet and ill be sure to throw something up online, photos? desktops? a video? who knows. just thought i would stop by and mention the trip here before i forgot to post it. well, i think thats all for now so if your into fun electronic music and your in the brooklyn area stop on by for the show. till next time...
so anyways, enough of all that. i really do hope to be getting some new stuff posted around here sometime soon! like a new podcast, some new desktops, and maybe a couple of new reviews...
thanks for stopping by! see you again soon!
p.s - happy fbd!
matt and i
thats right everyone, its the 23rd of the month which means that it is once again ferris bueller day! its a day that is celebrated by taking a break from life and getting the chance to get out and have a day all to yourself and your loved ones. go ahead. cancel your plans, whatever they may be and make a nice little mental list of things you have never done that you have wanted to do but for whatever reason never let yourself have the time to do them.
so loosen up a bit and have a good one!
there is a band called contraband that i did the sound for last night that has a really cool idea and its really amazing to watch. the idea is that there are two guys that sit and play the old nintendo game contra from start to finish (projected up onto a screen for everyone to see) while the band plays the soundtrack to the game. they had the crowd hollering along and rooting for them to win. the show lasted about 20 minutes which is a pretty impressive time to beat the game. the guys playing obviously had every detail of the game memorized. the show was funny yet really gripping for whatever reason. if they ever play a show near you i would strongly recommend you check them out! here are some photos...
home made ice cream to start things off
following our navigator val
there was a couple of bridges so you could see over the field
and down the sun went
and out came the moon
i had no pumpkin...
so i ran off to get one...
ps - lots of new desktops lined up so look out!!
• im not usually one for war movies, in fact ive only seen one that i really thought was any good which was full metal jacket. i am however looking forward to this one movie called jarhead. it just looks damn good. check out the trailer here to see what i mean.
• i just saw the movie proof last night and i would recommend anyone that its playing near go check it out. i saw the play that this movie was based on and loved it so i was very excited to see that there was a movie being made based on the play. the movie version was surprisingly accurate and all but perhaps 5 minutes of the film seemed to be right on the same as the play which is a good thing seeing that the play is so well written to begin with. i think it won some sort of big award in the world of theatre but i cant remember what its called. at any rate, go check this out, trust me its really good! check out the trailer here.
• and there is one more that ill mention here that i have been curious about for a while now called 2046. i think its a chinese film and the mood of it reminds me of bladerunner. well from the trailer anyways. check it out here.
everything comes out in the wash
this whole gas thing is getting pretty crazy over here in the usa, it feels like some people are switching into panic mode. this reminds me of whenever there is even a small possibility of a snow storm in the winter people rush out and buy milk and bread like crazy, two foods that wont last very long if your holed up in your house with no power. sometimes people just amaze me with there behavior.
it's a nicer city than i remember the last time i was there.
a little stop at buffalo exchange.
i had lots of fun exploring chinatown, i bought a bunch of fun drinks such as...
...this tasty bottle of ramune.
we ended up going to three different ikea's off of 95 while we were out and about this trip, they are pretty intimidating stores, ill tell you that much!
ahhhhh, and then there was this wonderful little trip down a river on a canoe.
im still here
When I decided to start writing music reviews on this website I knew that they would not end up being your typical music reviews and I'm sure that shows as you read them. Although I am familiar with all sorts of various genres of music I try not to pigeonhole the music I like into specific little sub-genres. It's way too one-sided to me. Music is more than a genre. It's more than a simple comparison to another artist with similar ideas. There is a reason music is such a vital element to so many people's lives, even more so than movies, gadgets, and video games. It's the emotion behind it. It's the feeling you get in the pit of your stomach that crawls out of your body via the hairs on the back of your neck. You know what I mean? Music is so much more than the label given to it. I know there are those of you out there that are thinking that there is more to it than that. It's not that simple, right? Well yes and no. Yes if your someone who let's yourself explore all of the new places music can take you. No if you are someone who tells me to stop playing all that terrible electronic music, there is no guitar player so is not real music. No if you are that someone who tells me to stop listening to all that sad bastard acoustic music, it's so boring and there is nothing to it. Who knows, maybe I'm making no sense at all here. You may say that genres are simply there to give the music an identity of its own but I think it's gotten way out of hand. It seems to me that these genres have started to own the music and created these little segregated groups of purists of any given genre. I come across so many people that seem to block out anything but their little trendy notch of a genre whether that be hip-hop, drum-n-bass, or country rock. It just seems silly to me that these things break the music community up into these little cliques. If you are one of those who are open to listen to all sorts of music then I'll have to take a second here to thank you. I know that we all have our favorites and that's not going to change but come on. Don't let it take over.... sorry, im loosing my grounding here. I'll quit while I'm making sense. Please feel free to leave a comment to give your opinion on the matter. I'm sure I will contradict myself at some point and when I do so let me know. I tend to go off a little to far into a thought and get lost a little bit.
these are some custom made m&m's made just for me for fbd (ferris bueller day!) its a monthly celebration of everything good that i share with val. i had no idea you could do this! pretty cool id say.
this was an image of my dad that i took a few years back when we were out west on a trip. i found it recently and made him a desktop out of it because i know he misses the area so much and i thought it would be a nice memento to have around.
thats all for now. see you again soon!
download it here: bite