Once upon a time, but not here, not now

Koosah“In those terrible places designed to rob us of our bodies and our spirits, we sustained each other.” — Philip Levine

Once upon a time, but not here, not now,
We sustained each other. Weak and varied,
We communed against the unbreakable dark.
It was not advantage we were seeking
But defiance in the presence of the truth.
We flourish then we fail and fade away.


New study questions the “packet switching” theory of Internet communications

image via Wikimedia
image via Wikimedia

A conservative computer science think tank in Maryland has published a paper claiming that packet switching, a foundational element of web communications, is much less widely accepted by the scientific community than is commonly reported.

The Institute of Computer Sciences, located in Arundel MD, is devoted to researching digital media from a Biblical perspective.

“Packet-switching is a theory,” said institute director Dr. Lyle Schmetterling. “There is a serious debate in the scientific community as to the reliability of data supporting this viewpoint. The complexity of Internet communications calls into question the idea that it is self-generated and mechanistic, a notion many in leftist academia have long presented as fact.”


Adios, Walking the Room


My favorite podcast, Walking the Room, has ended. I had a few feelings and ideas I wanted to register.

When I say Walking the Room is my favorite podcast I mean my next favorites don’t even chart – and they are great podcasts. As a professional journalist (not an entertainment journalist) I wrote about Greg Behrendt twice, the podcast once, and Dave Anthony once.

When I was younger, I was not a Comedy Fan. What did I need comedy for when all of my friends were funnier than any club meatheads or altcomedy prima donnas the market offered me? It was similar with music. I didn’t need to go see rock shows when I could see The Jazz Greats grabbing their crotches in Antigone’s basement or Ian playing cante jondo in the gravel lot on the alley opposite Max’s.


Numbers: my weekly news column in verse

200176792-001My weekly column on news in verse, “Numbers,” has debuted in The Cryptosphere.

Each week I’ll be reviewing a trend or event in the news. In metrical verse.

Although the approach is exceedingly unusual these days — in fact, I believe Numbers is the only weekly poetic treatment of news currently being published (if you know of any others, please let me know) — but the practice of journalism-in-verse can be traced back to at least mid-17th century France.

I have actually written this type of news-based occasional verse a few times beforeprimarily for ReadWrite. But this is the first time I’ll have a long-term opportunity to see what the format can do over time, for both news and poetry.


Mobility as a Service


In the future, cars will be less product and more process

This year has seen an upsurge in mobile connectivity, but not just in handsets and laptops. It’s cars too that are getting plugged in.

Joining Ford’s grandfatherly SYNC system (which first debuted in its original iteration way back in, oh, aught-seven I reckon), and Tesla, which offers free 3G on its Model S series cars, are Audi and Buick.

Audi’s A3 model will feature 4G connectivity beginning this summer, bumped up from 3G+, which was offered in their Audi 47 model under the brand “Audi Connect,” still offered throughout the Audi catalogue.

“Several years ago, Audi viewed that the future of connected cars hinged on the ability to deliver a broadband pipeline into the car’s infotainment systems so that massive amounts of data could be delivered to equip motorists with the best information on navigation routes and destinations,” Audi America’s corporate communications manager, Brad Stertz said.


My Life on the Holy Mountain: Introduction

sac store

I’ve decided to write my memoir of life among the Gypsies, instead of writing another horrible book proposal or trying to publish another magazine article about it. Not that this will result in the book getting published, but I’ve been thinking about it for years and it feels like something I need to write. I’ll be publishing parts of the draft here.


¡Oh ciudad de los gitanos! 
¿Quién te vió y no te recuerda? 

The sleeper car on the night train to Granada was stifling. The window catch was broken and there was no airconditioning. At first, I tried to prop it open by wedging my arm between the sill and the sliding panel, but invariably I would doze off, my arm would slip out, and the window would bang shut, waking us up in the most alarming way imaginable. I tried this half a dozen times before finally giving up and slipping into a fitful and excessively lubricated sleep.


Comic: An oral history of failure, and (partial) redemption

dave anthony

I have published my profile of comedian Dave Anthony on Medium.

Check yourself, before you wreck yourself.


“We had a practice run at Largo,” he said, referring to the LA comedy and music club. “A couple of his jokes didn’t fly and he he just kind of started attacking the crowd. His portion was kind of deadly, you know?”

Oswalt pulled Anthony aside afterward and said, ‘You going to not do that on the road, are you?’ I didn’t want him attacking every crowd. He exploded at me. ‘You’re a tiny dictator! You get a little bit of power and you turn into an asshole!’

Photo by Angelo

Anonifamous: The challenges of an idea in the wake of celebrity


The genesis of the hacktivist collective Anonymous is a far cry from either hacking or activism. It began as a way to raise hell, for a group of mostly kids tired of a rule-bound world to careen around in their digital clown cars smashing the mailboxes of the Internet’s Babbits.

Since that beginning, the group, insofar as it can be called a group, has changed. Repeatedly. It has moved from lulz, or kicks, to extremely earnest political activities, to self-celebration, and on the way, has alienated many, and not just those who consider the group vandals, but many of those vandals themselves.


To The War Poets

Vietnam Navy

This story shall the good man teach his son. – William Shakespeare, Henry V

All the words they’ve bitten out of war
And written down with shaking hands and blood
Half-whiskey, or in grim mastery of self