Saturday, December 12, 2009

Quit Yr Job Day

By th way, in case you haven't heard:

Every day is Quit Yr Job Day!

& I happened to celebrate it last Thursday by doing just that!



"Democracy" means
rule by th loudest,
rule by th sneakiest,
rule by th best organized.

Those who call our present system unjust
& continue to talk about "democracy"
might consider that th birthplace of "democracy"
was a war-happy patriarchal slave-economy.
It worked for them & it works for us.

I don't know if it's possible to separate "democracy"
from oppression by th "majority"
& influence by th propagandists,
who succeed in getting masses of people
to vote against their own interests every time.
If it is possible, it is only possible if we call it out -
name it - & design against it:

"This is happening - our system makes this happen.
If we want a different thing to happen,
we need to design a different system."

Democracy is a dirty word to me.

Friday, December 11, 2009

upcoming: oddmusic covergence dec '09

You’re invited to attend, as performer or audience


“metablues, microtones, contraptions, utopia”

on Monday, December 14, at 7:30 p.m.

in the main space of the Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center.

$5-10, no one turned away for lack of funds.

a concert featuring responses to invitations:

0. ODDMUSIC - What is Oddmusic? Show us.
1. METABLUES - Write a “blues” song which points, instead of at old problems framed in th old language, new problems which demand a new language.
2. MICROTONES - Write a piece in an odd tuning (one which is non-redundant with conventional wisdom).
3. CONTRAPTIONS – Write a piece for an odd instrument (or a not-so-odd instrument played in an odd way).
4. UTOPIA – Write a piece which speaks of alternatives not yet possible in the current system. For example, a false statement bulletin.

Some performances are already in the works which play with these invitations. We invite you to add more! This Convergence will have something of an Open Mic element to it; if you have a piece, or can put together a piece, which attempts to respond to these invitations, please bring it and share it! Surprise us with your own metablues, microtones, contraptions, or utopias.

If you want assistance making a piece happen, get in touch!

Next Sunday, December 13, the day before the Convergence, we’re holding Office Hours as usual in th Oddmusic Oddstrumentarium (room 21A of the IMC). We’ll be working on pieces then, and welcome your participation in that. Bring an interest, and we’ll work on something together!

Music is ours to odd. Odd is ours to music.

Much love, Andrew

Friday, November 27, 2009


I call something a "Pivot" when:

A & C alone contradict one another.
B contradicts neither A nor C.
A composed sequence A-B-C resolves th contradiction
since th composed sequence is neither A nor B nor C, but instead
a context in which th three can live
(a different logical type): X.

How to practice pivots?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

2 Brünish somethings

2 related somethings written by Herbert Brün that I want to keep around.

First, from th program notes of his String Quartet No. 3:

If played and heard often enough, every musical gesture is prone to be interpreted, by musicians and listeners, as a gesture of musical speech. As the gesture becomes familiar, and thus recognized by society, the composed structure, in which the context generates the meaning of its components, will be misunderstood, instead, as one in which the components give meaning to their context.

In order to retard this development, this visitation of communicative familiarity, for as long as possible, I have attempted, in several of my compositions, to anticipate the gesture-forming tendencies within the composed structure and to reduce each of them ad absurdum by way of a non sequitur. I wanted, thereby, to rob trivial perception and partial recognition of the paralyzing effect that all too commonly is mistaken for understanding of music.

Th second, from My Words And Where I Want Them, #247:

Composition generates whole systems so that there be a context which can endow trivial 'items' and meaningless 'materials' with a sense and a meaning never before associated with either items or materials.

Be it linguistic art, where the sentence injects meaningful intent into mere lexicographic vocables, thus turning these into words-

be it visual art, where the configuration injects meaningful intent into mere perceptible data, thus turning these into spaces, shapes, movements and colorpatterns-

be it audible art, where the structuring of time and distance injects meaningful intent into mere acoustical phenomena, thus turning these into musical events-

sooner or later both the profiteering interpreters and the consuming audience will perversely deny the composers' competence and, instead, declare the sentence to be meant by its words, the painting to be meant by its components, and the music to be meant by its sounds.

In order to retard this unfortunate and inevitable decay (too many humans are indistinguishable from laws of nature) for as long as possible, I have contrived to inhibit such gesture forming tendencies in most of my compositions by using many a non sequitur as a structural leap over new gaps avoiding old bridges.

The intent is motivated by my non-malicious desire to keep not only my music as alienated as possible from 'business as usual' and to have not only my composition say something to the interpreter and the listener for the longer time than it may take them to just repeat their habitual commonplaces to themselves.

The survival of composition depends on the composer's art: anticommunication.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

economic think(ing out loud)

Different people paying th same number of dollars does not mean different people paying th same value.

My $20 is, to me, a different value than your $20 is to you.

What would a proportional currency look like? Instead of "everyone has to pay th same dollars" it might go, "everyone has to pay th same proportion". Then, 20 proportional units ("poops," say) for me & 20 poops for you are, to each of us, th same value (more or less), but a different number of dollars.

In effect, each person would have her own currency which would convert to dollars at a different rate.

This assumes we develop a "fair" way of determining th "value" of $20 for each person.

What about th "value" of stuff for th seller? If I charge 20 poops for a candy bar, then some folks would spend more dollars than others on th candy bar (because of th different dollars to poops rates). If I'm selling a candy bar & I want more dollars, I'd try to attract th folks whose poops are worth more dollars.

But why would someone want more dollars? If I find a way to make more dollars, my poops are worth less.

If we had poops (& we cared about fair distribution of power), we wouldn't need dollars at all. Poops could cancel out th power of dollars entirely.

Maybe a proportional currency could exist alongside standard currency, added to th current economy for ease of sliding-scale-type transactions. If it were made easy for people to charge proportional prices instead of standard prices, I wonder if they would do it.

Another can of worms: organizations that function as people. Companies, corporations, non-profits, unions, committees, political parties. Do they get poop rates? Can a small business spend fewer dollars than a large business, but th same number of poops? Where do I stand next to X-mart, when we're competing to buy a thing?

Maybe dollars & poops are in contradiction. Yes, I think they are, & for th contradiction to get resolved, we need a different system.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

a/c minn

Carly & I made it to Minneapolis. No puppet show after all -- we're here on vacation (till Tuesday).

We stayed th last two nights with a new friend from named Rachel. She was lots of good to us, & now we're staying with Brian from the Twin Cities Independent Media Center. We spent hours today trying to get our mitts on bikes, & we finally found a place that'll rent used bikes cheap (three of my favorite words!). We biked th beautiful park district bike paths around three teeny lakes tonight, & Carly has drifted off to sleep for an evening nap. I like this place & wanted to type some words about it (stockpiling warmth, she said when she woke up).

Recently, one question at SDaS experimental composition seminar has been, "how to seek your fruitful conflicts," &, meeting new people, I'm finally finding fruitful conflicts! I'm learning about questions & dynamics.

Brian says he's making dinner & Carly says she's baking vegan cookies. I have made no culinary promises, & might partake of something resembling a nap myself.

Love from a new state,

Saturday, October 17, 2009

puppet something to come

Carly, Jacob & I are putting together a something:

Oddmusic U-C* presents: 25% MORE, a music-o-puppet extravaganza, coming to a Minneapolis near you November 7-9, 2009.

25% MORE takes a sideways ponder at the tyranny of work, the tyranny of measurement systems, and the tyranny of doing something different.

We'll offer an evening of workshops and songs, with a main entrée of original puppets & music by Carly Nix, Jacob Barton & Andrew Heathwaite.

“Whaddaya mean, workshops?” Imagine 20-minute crash courses in:

GHOST-WHALIN' -or- How to play the musical saw
UDDERBOTSMITH -or- How to tootle with a slide bottle
METABLUES -or- How to think in 22-tone guitar
REP. CARDS -or- How to art yourself out of bad grooves
AUDIENCING -or- How to give multiple attentions
DESIRING WITH TEETH -or- How to make unfortunately false statements

* Oddmusic Urbana-Champaign “is” a project to connect experimental composition, performance art, nonstandard tuning practices & instrument-building with non-sectarian radical social change. We insist upon “music” as a type of “odd,” desirable when it avoids the same old society telling itself what it already knows.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

hello from/to September

I just noticed I haven't blogged here since June. I've kept myself busy.

Big cloudy mess (list) of what's-been-goin'-on: got a great new lover (3 months together now) ; been involved w/ School for Designing a Society Language Lab & more to come ; getting my work schedule etc. figured out for th rest of th year ; playin' 22-tone acoustic guitar & anticipating new songwriting explosions ; almost caught up on rent ; great new people moving into La Casa ; grand(e) opening for Oddmusic, & now a period of what's next ; putting my desires in order & watching them dissolve & transform each other ; helpin' some pumpkins get sun ; eating adzuki beans ; ...

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


I don't know who reads this blog exactly, but if someone who does happens to have a passionate interest in Finnegans Wake, as I sometimes do, then I'd like to alert you to a website of some value.

FWEET, which stands for Finnegans Wake Extensible Elucidation Treasury has a very powerful & friendly search engine for probing th Wake. It contains over 79,000 "elucidations" about each line of th Wake, & you can search th text of th elucidations & th text of th book. For instance, a search for th word "buggy" (a word that came to mind just now) gives us one line from th Wake itself & two elucidations containing "buggy".

In th FW text, it gives us just that one line, from page 85, "buggy and bike, to walk, Wellington Park road, with the curb," & if I want to see th lines before & after it, I can click on th page number (085) & get this page.

When I do my bibliomantic divinations using Finnegans Wake, I like to nab a smallish & interesting phrase, so I'll expand that just a bit to:

open to buggy and bike, to walk, Wellington Park road, with the curb or quaker's quacknostrum under his auxter and his alpenstuck in his redhand

So today it seems we have an image of a thoroughfare & a person walking w/ a quacknostrum (quack remedy) under his arm (auxter, from oxter, armpit) & a walking stick (alpenstuck, from alpenstick) in his redhand. To whom in my life (since it's a divination for me after all) does this refer? Me? A friend? Someone to watch out for somewhere in th world? Th FW gives us a clue where to find him: somewhere open to buggy and bike. I suppose I could take that literally, altho maybe it means something else... like a blog! Ha, maybe it refers to FWEET, a website that seems very elucidating, but actually carries quacknostrum under its auxter. Hmm.

All in all, in spite of any strange divinations that may come up, I do recommend FWEET for joyful Finnegansplay.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

a Bouyant Bloomsday 2009

Hi friends, & again, Happy Bloomsday. As you may recall, 105 years ago to th day, took place th events of James Joyce's Ulysses, altho some miles away in Dublin, & not here in Urbana, Illinois. (& of course, in another Dublin than th one that exists today, since time & space remain inseparable in practice indeed.)

(He flourishes his ashplant shivering the lamp image, shattering light over the world. A liver and white spaniel on the prowl slinks after him, growling. Lynch scares it with a kick.)

I don't have big plans myself; some folks're gathering in Champaign later on, says Facebook, so I'll probably join. It seems I forgot all about it last year, so simply taking a moment to poke thru Ulysses, which has sat on my shelf unread for a few years, counts for something. I quietly recited some of Finnegans Wake to myself last night, & may do that again today. But for th most part, no big plans.

However, for "old time's sake" & to renew a worthy fascination, I'll do a quick bibliomantic divination using th good FW. Ahem. Page 126:

Who do you no tonigh, lazy and gentleman?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

birthday party

Happy Birthday!

I type to you now from th Orpheum Children's Science Museum, where I work th front desk these days. On my right, I hear th sounds of birthday party nomming - a cupcake cake! I gave these folks a short animal show, where they got to meet three of our critters: Windy, an ornate box turtle; Patricia, one of our bearded dragons; & Corny, th corn snake. Everybody got along swimmingly - no one eaten, no one brought to tears, no minor deaths.

Later tonight, I'll do a workshop on magic. I have about five easy tricks to show off & teach. I did a sloppy li'l preview for my house last night, & I feel good about that.

In between that & this, maybe a nap?

Thursday, June 11, 2009


Oh, a sleeping drunkard
Up in Central Park,
And a lion-hunter
In the jungle dark,
And a Chinese dentist,
And a British queen--
All fit together
In the same machine.
Nice, nice, very nice;
Nice, nice, very nice;
Nice, nice, very nice--
So many different people
In the same device.
~53rd Calypso of Bokonon

Storm tonight, a big one, which, says Ronna, came all th way from Texas to greet us. Big thunder. Big lightning. Big me, in it.

I ran in it, jumped in it, danced in it, but mostly stood in it, w/ my arms raised. I wanted to feel every drop, hear every nuance of th constant rumbles in my ears, sense every blade of grass (getting taller!) that went between my toes. I wanted to blur th line between Me & It.

We talked about th end of th world (climate change!), & I thought, well of course th world is ending. Also beginning, both of those, in every moment. But things will never be th same again. How could they possibly?

We live in a most massive non-trivial machine. We are it. If lightning strikes me, it's not an It & a Me, separate things. It's one divine It, this very same device. Me becomes (Me) becomes () becomes...

Thursday, June 4, 2009

2s & 47s

Moving lots of files from place to place. Th computer says: "Copying 2,222 items to HBParkhouse," & as I notice this & think about twos, I see th computerclock, which reads 2:22 pm. Now, of course, they say "2,197" & "2:27".

A few days ago I saw a pair of 47s, an interstate & a time. I took special note of th interstate, then noticed a carclock reading something:47.

Ah, & now that I open my book, I see that I've stopped on page 44, twice 22. Th 22nd word on page 22: "book". 22nd sentence on page 22: "That's all I wanted to say". 22nd paragraph in th book: "I can walk across the bridge hundreds of times without stepping on that board, but Margaret always steps on it."

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Cali & back

Jacob & I enjoyed a magical 11 days in California ((but aren't all 11 days magical?)), returning yesterday morn on a red-eye flight. We connected with old & new friends to very quickly & thoroughly assemble a Moondog Madrigal Puppet Show, which we performed last Friday at th Community Music Center in th Mission district of San Francisco.

Louis "Moondog" Hardin wrote over 100 quirky rounds that he called madrigals, & 22 of these became music in this three-act puppet opera written by our friends Marji & Dan, who played a young student artist named Kneena (who speaks in haiku), & a mysterious Vandal, respectively. Jacob played a pitiful Professor, & our friends Robin & Peter an Angel & an Earthworm. Th rest of us (Nathan, Lembit, Paul, & yr hairy narrator) took turns playing th Student Body, a puppet representing a conglomerate of clueless college students (who speak (sort of) in pantoums) & parody an ancient Greek chorus. All of us played instruments & sang tasty Moondog rounds.

We got a good-sized audience full of friendly people, who seemed to like it quite a bit. We hope to take a next step & do more performances somewhere.

I enjoyed hilly California, altho I don't know how much of sense of it I got. I didn't do a whole lot outside of rehearsals for this show (which we had plenty of), but I did get around a bit: to Chinatown for a tea tasting; to an artist space in th Mission to chat w/ a new friend Tyson & play w/ some piano innards; to some acoustically marvelous tunnels on a mountain across th Golden Gate Bridge (which overlooked a very Herzogian fog); to a street corner at 1 am to play madrigals for five or so people; to a private birthday party at a club, also to play madrigals; to th Maker's Faire, where we pulled up some grass & serenaded some passersby; to Berkley, where our friends Andrea & Qilo live, for an Indian dinner & a potluck which hosted a conversation about Cybernetics & Somatics; to th basement of an office building getting renovated, where we spent in sleeping bags for a few nights; to City Lights, a leftist bookstore; to a forest-suburb of Santa Cruz, where eight of us lived & rehearsed for a few days, house-sitting, cooking great food, palling around; to lots of nice little coffee shops; to th airport, naturally, which pointed us home.

So we got in yesterday, & I promptly napped. I find Urbana simply marvelous to come home to. I love traveling, & I love making this place my home. (You simply must visit!) Yesterday ended, much to my surprise w/ a very late night, shared w/ someone special. I woke up late today, walked to th libary w/ my friend Ronna, started reading a new book which I so far enjoy, & picked some garlic scapes.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

bits of project


Tonight, Jacob & I (intend to) host a pre-opening for a space we've started renting at th IMC. Th space might host many things - at least:

  • a (microtonal) musical instrument library (Instrumentarium!)
  • a "composer's living room"
  • an Oddmusic Ensemble
  • an Oddmusic Collective
  • composition workshops
  • listening parties
  • recording sessions
  • composition lessons
  • insert idea here

So we've invited folks over for a 'pre-opening' to expand our pool & seduce new oddmusicians (whatever that might mean). Workshop for potential workshop.

& very soon we travel to San Francisco to do a puppet show with An Exciting Event.

Last week, La Casa hosted House Concert VII (seventh in 'recent memory' - fourth that I've participated in). I did: an old Nodal Nim song ('5 songs of fish'); a reading of a chapter in Gertrude Stein's Tender Buttons; &, w/ Jacob, a presentation inviting folks to tonight's pre-opening.

Alsonewthing: I have a new job at th Orpheum Children's Science Museum, working at th front desk, answering phones, feeding turtles, sweeping up blue sand, etc.

I made a modular calendar yesterday.

Sunday, May 10, 2009



I do NOT feel
compassion for you.

I canNOT feel
less than
this complicated ache.

I do NOT apologize
my body's language.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

tell yr crush!

Hey! Today, May 7 = International Tell Your Crush Day! So do it!

I just so happen to have an international crush (or 3), who needs to know how I feel about her. (I'll get around to it after work; I've promised myself.) Probably, I've got at least a minor crush on (at least) one reader of this blog, so just in case "you know who you are," let me tell ya:

I've got a CRUSH on YOU!

Those of you just hearing about this, never fear. Go boldly - never too late. Observe th holiday - profess yr undying love. (Never mind th ridiculousness of th "undying" part. Crushers don't notice these things.) Reveal that beautiful yearning, friend!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

forced brevity

I've had a cold, & now it has stolen my voice. I can speak, but it sounds dreadful. I've decided to take it as a (forced) exercise in brevity. How can I say what I need to using th very fewest words? An interesting dilemma.

Yuckvoice from cold means brevity game. How speak fewly? Neat.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Some I-can't-do-withouts

Imagining lovers. What qualities/behaviors could I not do without? A preliminary brainstorm.

  • (appreciation of) absurdist humor
  • (stated) desire to cultivate compassion for all beings
  • identification as any (not necessarily all) of th following: feminist, anarchist, social change artist, strong agnostic, metaclown
  • love of affection, including (but not merely) sexual affection
  • sensitive nipples
  • stated preference for variety & spontaneity
  • rejection of (traditional language around) sin, gender norms, capitalism, money, faith, pop culture, sacredness
  • ok w/ (some) biting
  • ok w/ (some) oral sex
  • (comfort being) orgasmic
  • at least vegetarian, & preferably vegan
  • interest in metaconversation & legitimate questions
  • hairiness & general comfort w/ "being a mammal"

Not an exhaustive list, but good to see & share. Given this specificity, it's no wonder I don't have a lover in my life. But, fuck, I deserve someone this good.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

3+1 Poems for Togetheringspring

A few weeks ago, I participated in a marvelous helloing to th Springtime in Evanston, hosted by Aaron & Lorna Johnson & attended by all manners of living, wine-guzzling wonderfuls. My co-conspirator Jacob Barton & I performed a newly-composed piece for microtonal piano exploring th birth cycle of a centaur. All parties danced & made merry. On this occasion, I happened to recite 3+1 poems, & having been recently asked about th poems, I will share them here.

A special thing happened that night. In candlelight, a roomful of dreamers somehow forgot about th sometimes-cruel sometimes-seemingly-artless outside & simply enjoyed each other & th togethering universe. I felt very grateful.

To prepare yrself for these short poems, I invite you to design yr own meditation for peace & rebirth. Pour yrself a glass of wine, play some music in dim lighting, feel yr body breathing, & recite these aloud.

Three by Wallace Stevens:


The light is like a spider.
It crawls over the water.
It crawls over the edges of the snow.
It crawls under your eyelids
And spreads its webs there--
Its two webs.

The webs of your eyes
Are fastened
To the flesh and bones of you
As to rafters or grass.

There are filaments of your eyes
On the surface of the water
And in the edges of the snow.

Life is Motion

In Oklahoma
Bonnie and Josie,
Dressed in calico,
Danced around a stump.
They cried,
Ohoo" . . .
Celebrating the marriage
Of flesh and air.

On the Surface of Things


In my room, the world is beyond my understanding;
But when I walk I see that it consists of three or four hills and a cloud.


From my balcony, I survey the yellow air,
Reading where I have written,
"The spring is like a belle undressing."


The gold tree is blue.
The singer has pulled his cloak over his head.
The moon is in the folds of the cloak.

One by Rumi, translated by Coleman Barks:

Where Everything is Music

Don't worry about saving these songs!
And if one of our instruments breaks,
it doesn't matter.

We have fallen into the place
where everything is music.
The strumming and the flute notes
rise into the atmosphere,
and even if the whole world's harp
should burn up, there will still be
hidden instruments playing.

So the candle flickers and goes out.
We have a piece of flint, and a spark.

The singing art is sea foam.
The graceful movements come from a pearl
somewhere on the ocean floor.

Poems reach up like spindrift and the edge
of driftwood along the beach, wanting!

They derive
from a slow and powerful root
that we can't see.

Stop the words now.
Open the window in the center of your chest,
and let the spirits fly in and out.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

it & I

In English, we capitalize pronouns when they refer to divinity. We call Jesus & th Buddha He & Him, & when they speak, they say Me & My. We don't capitalize pronouns otherwise, except for when they appear at th beginning of a sentence, & whenever we write th tiny word I. Does this mean that we recognize ourselves as divine, but no other beings, not th its, th yous, th shes in our lives? We don't even capitalize 'me', implying, perhaps, that we recognize our own divinity only when we speak of ourselves as agents of a sentence, & not when we objectify ourselves. What a special word, this I.

So what happens if I write about It & Her, You, We & Us?

Interestingly, we have just started in recent years to call ourselves lowercase 'i'. What does this say about how we feel about ourselves & our relationship to th divine?

^ Bad linguistics, I know, but maybe a worthwhile writing experiment....

Monday, April 13, 2009

(Cybernetic) Imperatives

Cybernetician Larry Richards has recently written a paper called The Anticommunication Imperative. In general, I recommend it, & in particular, I'd like to copy for you his list of 'imperatives', collected from a few sources & augmented by his newest one, which I happen to like quite a bit: If you seek the new, compose asynchronicity.


Heinz von Foerster initiated a tradition, or what could become a tradition, when he articulated in the context of cybernetics a set of imperatives:

The Ethical Imperative: Act always so as to increase the number of choices.

The Aesthetical Imperative: If you desire to see, learn how to act.

The Therapeutic Imperative: If you want to be yourself, change!

Klaus Krippendorf later formulated the following set:

The Aesthetic Imperative: Construct your own reality to see.

The Empirical Imperative: Invent as many alternative constructions as you can and enact them to experience the constraints on their viability.

The Self-Referential Imperative: Include yourself as a constituent of your own constructions.

The Ethical Imperative: Grant others that occur in your constructions at least the same capabilities that you employ in constructing them.

The Social Imperative: When communicating, preserve or open new possibilities for others.

In this tradition, I [Larry Richards] would like to add:

The Anticommunication Imperative: If you seek the new, compose asynchronicity.

This tradition of Imperative-writing has some overlap w/ a project of Jacob's & mine -- see: repertoire cards. (Perhaps especially th repertoire card entitled 'imperatives' which contains th text, "Speak only in imperatives.") Our project also plays w/ constructions & so points at Krippendorf's set of imperatives.

As always, I invite yr response.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

beerdig improvlab doodleydoo

La Casa hosted a beer dig yesterday - bribing our friends w/ alcohol to get them to dig a pond for us! Rather than re-post about it here, I'll direct you here, to th beer dig entry of th notorious La Casa Urbana blog. Mudluscious!

I zipped over to th University of Illinois this afternoon to participate in an "Improv Lab". Folks got together to play improvised music & dance improvised dances. I had hoped for something weirder & more well-attended, but I enjoyed what I got. I did a bit of mandolinning as well as dancing. I haven't spent so much time examining my toes since th age of 6 or so.

Jacob & I had a 17-tone woodshed fest this evening, no doubt annoying our housemates w/ microtonal singing, tromboning & cümbüşing exercises. More 17-tone tunes to come. Our band (band?) may have a name soon (soon?).

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

(beautiful) sounds of Africa

A sharing: a short video featuring music from th Baka tribe in Africa:

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

some latelies

Bits of nowish goings in andRLand (traveling backwards in time):

  • Now: recovering from an inter-co-op potluck, lying on th oh so comfy bed in our livingroom.
  • This evening: met w/ Snowleopard & Dogbody about playing dead people.
  • This afternoon: started arranging th old Nim song 'how to ferment th colon' in 17edo.
  • This morning: totaled meat at th food co-op I work at.
  • Last night: auditioned an improvised dance w/ friend Sarah for th dance department of U of I, playing cümbüş.
  • Yesterday afternoon: digitized.
  • Yesterday morning: chatted w/ Drew over tea.
  • Sunday evening: went to a lovely concert in somebody's living room.
  • Sunday afternoon: cleaned my room; started reading th Diamond Sutra.
  • Sunday morning: groggy house meeting.
  • Early Sunday morning: drove home from Chicago, arriving after 2 am.
  • Saturday evening: attended a party in candlelight at AKJ's place in Evanston, IL to ring in th spring; debuted a brand new piece w/ Jacob for a grand piano tuned to a microtonal scale called Centaur; danced & shouted; imbibed wines; recited poetry.
  • Saturday afternoon: took Jacob to my "old neighborhood" in Chicago; we visited El Taco Veloz for lunch & Myopic Books for compulsive reading buys (for me: th Diamond Sutra & a new (for me) version of th Bhagavad Gita - for Jacob: Philosophy in th Flesh).
  • Saturday morning: finished preparing Centaur piece w/ Jacob & rehearsed it.
  • Friday night: saw an improv comedy show in Chicago at iO.
  • Friday evening: arrived by accident 24 hours early for th concert in Evanston!
  • Friday afternoon: rode north (w/ Jacob driving); made last-minute plans for our piece.
  • Friday morning: selected poetry for spring celebration (3 by Wallace Stevens); brainstormed for Centaur piece..
  • Thursday night: potluck at La Casa; I made black bean burgers!
  • Thursday evening: went to Bobbi's art opening at th IMC & chatted it up.
  • Thursday afternoon: began composing Centaur piece w/ Jacob.
  • Thursday morning: worked at food co-op, stockin' stuff.
  • Wednseday night: ate at Courier Cafe w/ Beth, Anna, Jacob, Mark, & th folks in Insurgent Theatre.
  • Wednesday evening: my band w/ Rob & Jacob opened for 'Paint th Town', a play put on by Insurgent Theatre, at th IMC.

& so on. We could take this all th way back to my birth, I suppose, but frankly, I don't remember much before Wednesday evening....

Monday, March 23, 2009

I wants.

A poem written by my friend Susan P:

I wants.

I pushes me: this causes a personality (in) me.

Me goes along with it, jumps onto it, actually sweats it, writes lists,
worries it along, trying to accomplish something.

Meanwhile, with no personality but want, I loses interest;
I sees things moving but always away from I.

I makes events, me reports them, following along like
Spencer Tracy/Katherine Hepburn of the movies.
Me, the tough newspaperman in a raincoat, huddled over a payphone, reporting;
I, running ahead, erratic, in a golden evening dress torn and splashed with mud.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Don't be a carcass of names

Before I return this thing to th library, I'd like to give you one last wee snip from Chuang Tzu:

Don't be a carcass of names
or treasure-house of schemes;

don't be a servant of pursuits
or proprietor of fine wisdom.

Make the inexhaustible your body
and wander beyond origins.

Make everything heaven gave you treasure enough
and know you have nothing.

Live empty, perfectly empty.

Sage masters always employ mind like a pure mirror:
welcome nothing, refuse nothing,

reflect everything, hold nothing.
And so they triumph over things with never a wound.

~ translation by David Hinton

Thursday, March 12, 2009

no nature

Can a person really have no nature?" asked Hui Tzu of Chuang Tzu.

"Yes," replied Chuang Tzu.

"But if you have no nature, how can you be called human?"

"Tao gives you shape and heaven gives you form, so why can't you be called human?"

"But if you're called human, how can you have no nature?"

"Yes this and no that - that's what I call human nature," replied Chuang Tzu. "Not mangling yourself with good and bad - that's what I call no nature. Instead of struggling to improve on life, you simply abide in occurrence appearing of itself."

"If you don't try to improve on life, how do you stay alive?"

"Tao gives you shape and heaven gives you form, so why mangle yourself with good and bad? But you

make an exile of your mind
and wear your spirit away.

You brood, leaning on a tree,
or doze, slumped over a desk.

Heaven made this your form,
and you waste it, twittering

away in a darkness of arcane
distinctions and quibbling."

from Chuang Tzu as translated by David Hinton

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

JARband @ Concerturtle

^ JARband performs at La Casa Concerturtle, March 6, 2009.

JARband "is" 17 tones per octave. JARband "is" Tonbar Cobja "on" 17-tone tubulong, udderbot, & trombone; AndRnim "on" Cümbüş; robscott "on" drumz.

This arrangement consists of two songs glued together, each taken from Book of Days.

First song, starting at 0:00:

[ @@@ Tz'ikin :: Three Birdsilver ]

gift of insides Saturmorn
numberfingering islandbear
a bribing cup of eggtalk
uglying mudwater between us
bafflheaded vines & targrunt
holes in places
cognitive trombumpetting weed
alley flightgarden
an assembled being

Second song, starting round 1:47:

[ @ Kame :: One Death ]

one quick away th faulters
fixated black & sunpants
resolved to (not) alter
talk to th pocket, thx
hey gravel yo gravel
sleep sleep & antiquity
away, not any place, fanned

We tune to xenharmonic/microtonal scale 17edo (a.k.a 17-equal (divisions of th octave), 17tET, 17-tone equal temperament). Each song takes a different subset of 17 - two different modes of th so-called heptatonic neutral scale: kleeth & dril - both w/ tonic note B.


degrees-of-17 between steps: 3 2 2 3 2 3 2
degrees-of-17 from 0: 0 3 5 7 10 12 15 0
interval classes: Perfect Unison ; Major 2nd ; Neutral 3rd ; Perfect 4th ; Perfect 5th ; Neutral 6th ; Neutral 7th ; Perfect Octave
17edo solfege: do re mu fa sol lu tu do
as pitches in B: B C# D-up E F# G-up A-up B


degrees-of-17 between steps: 3 2 3 2 3 2 2
degrees-of-17 from 0: 0 3 5 8 10 13 15 0
interval classes: Perfect Unison ; Major 2nd ; Neutral 3rd ; Diminished 5th ; Perfect 5th ; Major 6th ; Neutral 7th ; Perfect Octave
17edo solfege: do re mu fu sol la tu do
as pitches in B: B C# D-up E-up F# G# A-up B

These scales differ by one two pitches, so altogether we play nine pitches in these pieces. "Neutral" refers to an interval between th more familiar Major & Minor intervals. 17edo has Minor, Major & Neutral 2nds, 3rds, 6ths & 7ths. Those neutral intervals help give th so-called "neutral scale" its particular mood.

Playing (with) Policy

At the House Concerturtle at La Casa Grande Colectiva on March 6, 2009, AnAndR presented their first draft of a toy piano and banjo piece entitled, Playing (with) Policy. The piece explores a city ordinance on Loud and Raucous Noise.

La Casa Concerturtle - March 6, 2009

Last Fridaynight, a fine few performed performings at th house o' me, Ms. La Casa Grande Colectiva. Our good friend Anna hosted, & it went something like this:

(I performed in two of these; I'll give them their own entries & embed video for you shortly. One of them you can already viddy here.)

I think it went delightfully well! We filled our living room, kept our guests in popcorn & organic grape juice, & followed it w/ a "talk back session" & a bonfire in th garden. I enjoyed having a deadline to finish (drafts of) my two projects. Hooray, etc!

This makes my third La Casa house concert. On my very first visit to Urbana, almost a year ago - March 27, 2007 - I came to this same house & performed Cümbüş songs (old blog entry about it here). That launched my interest in School for Designing a Society, which I attended in th fall. That fall semester culminated in a house concert in December, mentioned in this blog entry. Now, having spent time living & doing "independent study" another concert has come & gone as a ritualistic marker of time & work, an opportunity to show traces of thinking & engage in togethering nowness. Hooray!

More house concerts (I predict) will happen here, & I do hope some not-so-far-away friends will make it down here to see. (I miss you!)

Ten thousand loves,

Monday, March 9, 2009

my house has a blog

Friendlings: see th newest o' blogs: that called La Casa Urbana: where I & my housemates can digitally share our doings. Live w/ us in cyberharmony. Blah blah blog.

La Casa Urbana!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

...from Chuang-tzu.

Now there is a saying about this, but I don't know if it's in the same category or not. If being in the same category and not being in the same category are construed as being in the same category with each other, then there is no difference. In any case, let me try to say it.

There is a beginning, there is never beginning to have a beginning, there is never beginning to never begin to have a beginning. There is existence, there is nonexistence. There is never beginning the existence of nonexistence, there is never beginning never beginning the existence of nonexistence. Suddenly, there are existence and nonexistence, but we don't know if existence or nonexistence actually exist or not.

Now I have said something, but I don't know if what I have said actually says anything or not.

~ from Chuang-tzu, translated by Thomas Cleary

Monday, February 23, 2009


Toward a usable logic for human interactions, communications, constructions, understandings, etc. I welcome comments, corrections, suggestions, disagreements, connections, etc. Send email or do fnord (comment)!

Entities or Objects

Let any letter, word, or phrase represent an entity or object, eg. "A", "X", "computer", "snail", etc.

Cognizing Entities

Let some letters represent cognizing entities, who create a world thru embodying a world. Eg. I, U.


Let a set of parentheses represent an "impression" - a dynamic pattern of thinking about a given subject which comes before language, before description. By putting you in parentheses, I create you for myself. Only cognizing entities have impressions.


reads "I's impression of U" or rather, "my impression of you."
An impression can change from moment to moment, & must.

If I haven't yet considered my impression of you, I can ask myself:


"What is my impression of you?"
By posing this question & attempting to answer it, I can dramatically alter I(U) thru a recursive feedback process.


Let a set of square brackets represent a "description" - a performance of a representation, given in some language, & once given, fixed in time. A new description may be added to th old, & th old may be declared obsolete, but a description, once given, remains.


"my description of you (at a given time/place, in a given medium)."

Descriptions do not "contain" meaning - they get their meaning thru impressions of cognizing entities. Tho th content of a description cannot be changed, my impression of it can, & must. Indeed, I have access to an understanding of a description only thru an impression:


"My impression of my description of you."
Altho on some level, we can both encounter th same description (hear th same story, watch th same song & dance, etc), we cannot possibly have th same impression of it:

I(I[U does not equal U(I[U

"My impression of my description of you does not equal your impression of my description of you."


Let a set of curlique brackets represent a "relationship" between two or more (cognizing) entities or objects.


reads "the/a relationship between I & U" or simply "our relationship".

I have access to an understanding of a relationship only thru an impression:


"My impression of our relationship."

Primacy of Impressions

I cannot know directly anything other than my own impression of an entity, object, or relationship. All meaningful terms, for me, must start with I(.
Thus I cannot know (for example):

  1. U - "you"
  2. I - "me"
  3. U(I - "your impression of me"
  4. U({I,U - "your impression of our relationship"
  5. U(U - "your self-impression"
  6. U[{I,U - "your description of our relationship"
  7. U[U - "your self-description"
  8. U[I - "your description of me"
  9. {I,U - "our relationship"
  10. I[U - "my description of you"
  11. I[I - "my self-description"
  12. I[{I,U - "my description of our relationship"

But I can know my impression of each of th above:
  1. I(U - "my impression of you"
  2. I(I - "my self-impression"
  3. I(U(I - "my impression of your impression of me"
  4. I(U({I,U - "my impression of your impression of our relationship"
  5. I(U(U - "my impression of your self-impression"
  6. I(U[I,U - "my impression of your description of our relationship"
  7. I(U[U - "my impression of your self-description"
  8. I(U[I - "my impression of your description of me"
  9. I({I,U - "my impression of our relationship"
  10. I(I[U - "my impression of my description of you"
  11. I(I[I - "my impression of my self-description"
  12. I(I[{I,U - "my impression of my description of our relationship"

Knowing What I Don't Know

This model may prove useful in pointing at th limits of our understanding.
For instance, I know from th rules so far that I cannot know:

{I,U - "our relationship"
U({I,U - "your impression of our relationship"

But I can know:

I({I,U - "my impression of our relationship"
I(U({I,U - "my impression of your impression of our relationship"

So, I can now ask myself th following question:


What is
my impression of
th relationship between
my impression of our relationship
my impression of your impression of our relationship

&, having given that some thought, I can attempt to describe that impression with:


My description of
my impression of
th relationship between
my impression of our relationship
my impression of your impression of our relationship


Does my taking match yr taking
or my me, yr you?
What happened in those nows
that can't happen again, or must?
How do you look yr taking?
If I make a sideways gesture,
noticed or not
(how not to drag us drugged & screaming)
which way do tomorrows fall
or do they fall at all?

p.s. Happy 23 Day!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Health Care Design Intensive in Baltimore

I went w/ School for Designing a Society & th Gesundheit Institute to Baltimore this past week for a Health Care Design Intensive. A hundred or so people gathered in th American Visionary Art Museum to generate new alternatives & conversations about more desirable ways of doing health care. Guests included students, artists, nurses, activists, doctors, patients, visionaries, educators, clowns. My friend Susan hosted, along w/ Patch Adams, who I found delightful. We had talks, workshops, design groups, Q&A's, polka dances, powerpoints, & singalongs. I fell in love w/ several great people & great ideas.

On th first day, Gesundheit had an event to raise funds for a hospital they've been building in West Virginia for some years. I learned about their work & offered my own contribution in th form of two old Nodal Nim songs, performed by Jacobbarton on udderbot & myself singing & mandolinning (vegetables you've never heard of & love song 5).

Patch led us in a workshop on loving, which consisted of four parts:

  1. We paired up & hugged - good hugs - long hugs - hugs in which we make ourselves entirely present w/ each other. One of th ladies that I hugged during this part found me every day of th conference for another hug, & each hug felt just incredible.
  2. We paired up w/ someone new & took turns gently holding th other person's head, gazing into their eyes, & saying, "I love you. I love you. I love you," for quite a while. I found that at first it didn't seem right, but then it seemed exactly right ("Yes, I do love this person!") & finally it seemed far too mild! I felt a way not at all done justice by th phrase "I love you." (Patch said later, in th context of a poetry recital slash mic check, "All love poems are understatements," & that made a lot of sense to me after this exercise.)
  3. We changed partners again, & this time, person B rested their head on person A's lap while person A gazed into person B's eyes & comforted them in silence, touching them, soothing them, imagining that their mother had just died. It felt great, & I think I let go of much of my pain then (for I found myself clinging to suffering very very little thru th rest of th conference). Th woman I comforted gushed afterward & seemed to feel quite a bit of relief as well.
  4. Finally, we paired up w/ someone new & took turns, while gazing into each other's eyes & not breaking eye contact, telling th story of love in our lives. Everything good, everything loving. I talked about my mother, memories of my father, my dog, my housemates, my former lovers. My partner, an older woman, told me about th first time she fell in love, & tears welled up for both of us. I felt close to this woman thru th rest of th conference, & talked to her a bit each day after that.

I wanted to share these exercises because I think they effected me th most. I learned that I can love perfect strangers, genuinely love them, & it feels very right to do so. I've started moving toward an greater embodiment of compassion, & having done this workshop, I think I've come far toward a goal: to genuinely feel love for everyone in my life.

I made good friends: a film-maker named Koushalya, who I hope to eventually clown w/ on th subway in NYC to get smiles of th miserable unsmiling masses (th little darlings!). I asked Koushalya th time & she showed me her watch. It has no hands. "Time is an illusion," she reminded me, & I laughed w/ joy at her thoughtful & welcome perturbation. Her filmmaking team: Accessible Horizons.

& six young students from Austria - Alexander, Reinhard, Giselle, Paula, Matteös & Lucy. Dressed as clowns, they smiled, danced, sang songs about sushi, wrestled, hugged & kissed us all. I felt fantastic in their presence, & they inspired me to relax & show love. They have intentions to build a hospital in Austria called Einherz, which means "One Heart." I will miss them & remember them, & I wish them th best. Paula made me promise to visit them in Europe... so who wants to sponsor a trip overseas for Andrew?

So much more to say. So much fun & love. It carried over today, as I stayed out dancing in Urbana at th Independent Media Center, to music DJed by my good friends Nate, Chris, & Elizabeth. I'll end w/ a new self-description in th form of a list of intentions that I put together at th Intensive:

* I live in love.

* I sit in gigantic NOW.

* I remember that I am myself AND I am not myself (I don't take myself literally).

* I LOVE US (& I will never again not love a stranger).

* I am not, but I am becoming.

* I work (moment to moment) to trivialize (projected) power differences while cultivating appreciation for distinction out of love.

Love to All,

Friday, January 30, 2009

2 self-descriptions of then-Andrews

Interested in th practice of writing self-descriptions. No description of anything explains th thing fully. All sentences fail (including this one). But no matter!

For th December La Casa house concert, each of us wrote a "self-description" for th program, a little anticommunicative something-or-another. For record-keeping / trace-leaving purposes, I will reproduce mine here:

That gesture of hearts & black boxes. Th dilemma of re-verbing-(stuck? stuck? stuck?). Anti-blame yrself, Self!

Another: my "Facebook profile". People use this space to list favorite bands & quotations to assemble some kind of communicative identity. Admitting that no description describes (every description lies?), I've had some fun w/ it. But my space has become gargantuan & out-of-date. I will reproduce it here as a trace & then burn it - start over. Ignore it completely - I insist!

Interests: musick, art, chaos, xenharmonics, (meta-)languaging, (meta-)games, Situations, (epic) poetry, shamanism, stripes, my beagle, th avant-garde, animalia, mandolinia, beans, Discordianism, Nomic, backgammon, cümbüş, theatre, avocados, fucking, pi, anarchy, design(ing a society), relativity, revolution, 17edo, vegans, mythology, toki pona, agnostics, teaching, toast, conversing, crayons, prime numbers, cybernetics, mismatching, conlanging, DNA, divination, nuts, th cosmos, Joyce, spooling, dots, pacifism, neologisms, nonce words, index cards, (post-)modernism, th Oulipo, cryptozoology, UFOlogy, 1 1 2 3 5, thoats, prickle, Go, Killer Bunnies, bards, forgetting, vejtbls, futurists, zedonks, skeptics, (c)raisins, quantum physics, nudity, gnosticism, metaprogramming, peanut butter, belts, photographs, tarragon, 22edo, dada, th Fool, strong coffee (but I quit!), onions, belief, whimsy, paleontology, fnords, artichokes, 13/10, Truth, Lies, confusion, Bacchus, breast pockets, discord, 20-consonant poems, strange loops, surrealism, platypodes, turtles, garlic, humanism, digits, song-poems, bourbon, technology, Tlaloc, moment of symmetry, boom, symbols, sigils, 23, Esperanto, atheism, Eris, rice (milk), constrained poetry, Unitarian Universalism, neckties, popcorn, memory, outsider music, mythistory, 20/11, druidry, primitivism, th Church of th Sub-Genius, Lojban, synthesis, lucid dreaming, cannibalism, minimalism, optimism, kitties, plaid, phenomenology, th aftermath, fuzzy logic, contradancing, astronomy, complexity, clay, 37edo, E Prime, manifestos, creation stories, podcasts, tea, (mystery) cults, cubism, th Fifth Circuit, sweet, (de-)constructing, habanero chile peppers, drums, autonomy, (rock) operas, robots, Deenmark, Chaos Magic(k), dice, cut spelng, Taoism, (red) wine, anarchy, nihilism, doilies, 13edo, veggie stir-fries, Ragnarök, pungent, synchronicities, Zen, clovers, transcendental numbers, Kabbalah, pasta, Operation Mindfuck, fiction, science, science-fiction

Favorite Music: Captain Beefheart, R.E.M., Threshold of Pain, th Fiery Furnaces, Deerhoof, th Shaggs, Charles Ives, th Beatles, Björk, Flaming Lips, Soul Coughing, Anton Webern, th Residents, th Beach Boys, Richard Wagner, Danielson Famile, Harry Partch, Ornette Coleman, Shooby Taylor, Edgard Varèse, X. J. Scott, Fat Worm of Error, George Crumb, Aphex Twin, They Might Be Giants, Os Mutantes, Wild Man Fischer, Caglar Juan Singletary, David Fox, PUNK'N, Rilo Kiley, gamelan music, karnatic music, John Cage, Tool, th Mathematicians, Cecil Taylor, Radiohead, Rodd Keith, Tom Waits, PJ Harvey, Jacky Ligon, Syd Barrett, Elvis Costello, Allen Ginsberg, Arnold Schoenberg, King Crimson, Chest, th Cure, Tiny Tim, 00100, Counting Crows, Ravi Shankar, Wendy Carlos, ZIA, Joanna Newsom, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Aaron Krister Johnson, Jacob Barton, th Bad Plus, Joseph Spence, Jandek, Alhaji Papa Susso, Dismemberment Plan, Tears for Fears, Morphine, Olivia Tremor Control, Autechre, David Bowie, Mark Enslin, Drunken Boat, Peter Blasser, JAARband, Talking Heads, Kraig Grady, th Starlight Mints, Coco Rosie, Herbert Brün, Glenn Branca, Charles Manson, Sibelius, th Doors, th Who, th Sugarcubes, Boredoms, Lucia Pamela, Alban Berg, William Shatner, Ween, Evolution Revolution, Led Zeppelin, Neutral Milk Hotel, Pere Ubu, Portishead, Igor Stravinsky, Sun Ra, Steve Reich, Skip Spence, Skip LaPlante, Guster, th Velvet Underground, Syzygyz, Joni Mitchell, Miles Davis, Ken Nordine, Sufjan Stevens, Luciano Berio, Hamza El Din, Peter Gabriel, Philip Glass, Of Montreal, Terry Riley, Bill Monroe, Matt Munisteri, Eric Dolphy, Daniel Johnston, Ben Johnston, K.U.K.L., Lutoslawski, Nodal Nim

Favorite TV Shows: Six Feet Under, Star Trek (TOS; TNG; DS9), Space Ghost Coast 2 Coast, Mr. Show, Carnivàle, Boston Legal, th Daily Show, Twin Peaks, Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Big Love, th Golden Girls, th Colbert Report, Harvey Birdman: Attorney at Law, Batman: th Animated Series, Seinfeld, Frontline, Monty Python's Flying Circus

Favorite Movies: Fata Morgana, Forbidden Zone, Out of This World: The Song Poem Story, Stroszek, Even Dwarfs Started Small, Julien Donkey-Boy, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, th Nightmare Before Christmas, What th BLEEP Do We Know?!, th Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill, American Beauty, Pi, Donnie Darko, Grizzly Man, Labyrinth, Dreams, Beetlejuice, Being John Malkovich, Bowling for Columbine, Fahrenheit 9/11, Gummo, Dr. Strangelove, Dune, Heart of Glass, Spinal Tap, I Heart Huckabees, Eraserhead, Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters 2

Favorite Books: Principia Discordia, Popol Vuh, th Odyssey, Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates, th Oulipo Compendium, I Ching, Ulysses, Finnegan's Wake, Illuminatus, Tender Buttons, th Tree of Knowledge, Prometheus Rising, Breakfast of Champions, Zen Mind Beginner's Mind, A Larry Richards Reader, Cat's Cradle, A Pattern Language, Quantum Psychology, Jitterbug Perfume, th Epic of Gilgamesh, Metaphors We Live By, th Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Cosmic Trigger I, Monkey, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, A Clockwork Orange, Being & Nothingness, th Tao of Physics, th Tao of Poo, Liber Kaos, Man & His Symbols, Cybernetics of Cybernetics, If On a Winter's Night a Traveler, Pale Blue Dot, Zen & th Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, th Phantom Tollbooth, Understanding Systems, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, th Omnivore's Dilemma, Galapagos, Waiting for Godot, th Bacchae, th Neverending Story, th Oresteia, Sri Isopanisad, E.E. Cummings: Complete Poems 1904-1962, th Gnostic Gospels of Jesus, Urban Shaman, Allen Ginsberg: Collected Poems 1947-1980, Alice in Wonderland, Lila, th Egyptian Book of th Dead, Alice Thru th Looking Glass, Still Life w/ Woodpecker, th Teachings of Don Juan, Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas, Oulipo Laboratory, Schrödinger's Cat Trilogy, th Golden Compass, Dune, Beowulf, Naked Lunch, Summa Discordia, Time & th Highland Maya, Sophie's World, th Man in th High Tower, Four Plays by Aristophanes, Songs in the Key of Z, Tao Te Ching, th Art of War, Life of Pi, th Joy of Pi, Operating Manuel for Spaceship Earth, th Wasteland & Other Poems (T.S.Eliot), th Book of Lies, th Dancing Wu Li Masters, Bitter Music, My Words & Where I Want Them

Favorite Quotations:


A little monkey goes like a donkey that means to say that means to says that more sighs last goes. Leave with it. A little monkey goes like a donkey.

}} ~ Gertrude Stein, Tender Buttons


If you want to be yourself, CHANGE.

}} ~ Heinz von Foerster


Th primary role of conversation is not communication; communication is secondary. Conversation is th converse of control; it supports th autonomy of th participants. Th primary role of conversation is th maintenance, transformation, & creation of distinction.


I do not know what utopia is. What I know is that whenever I act on my wants, needs, or desires, I do so w/ utopian intentions. When I do so, I am influencing in some way th society in which I find myself. However, if I realize that my autonomy - my ability to experience choice - requires a relationship w/ others who possess a similar propensity, I must accept that they have *different* wants, needs, & desires, & that indeed that is desirable.

}} ~ Larry Richards


A way a lone a last a loved a long the / riverrun, past Eve and Adam's, from swerve of shore to bend of bay, brings us by a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.

}} ~ James Joyce, Finnegan's Wake


Oh, a sleeping drunkard
Up in Central Park,
And a lion-hunter
In the jungle dark,
And a chinese dentist,
And a British queen -
All fit together
In the same machine.
Nice, nice, very nice;
Nice, nice, very nice;
Nice, nice, very nice -
So many different people
In the same device.

}} ~ Bokonon's 53rd Calypso


Meanwhile everyone wants to breathe & nobody can & many say, 'We will breathe later.' & most of them don't die because they are already dead.


Let's not change bosses, let's change life.


We want a wild & ephemeral music.
We propose a fundamental regeneration: concert strikes,
sound gatherings w/ collective investigation.
Abolish copyrights: sound structures belong to everyone.

}} ~ Situationist International Anthology


thou Maker, thou Modeler,
look at us, listen to us,
don't let us fall, don't leave us aside,
thou god in the sky, on the earth,
Heart of Sky, Heart of Earth,
give us our sign, our word,
as long as there is day, as long as there is light.
When it comes to the sowing, the dawning,
will it be a greening road, a greening path?
Give us a steady light, a level place,
a good light, a good place,
a good life and beginning.
Give us all of this, thou Hurricane,
Newborn Thunderbolt, Sudden Thunderbolt,
Newborn Nanahuac, Sudden Nanahuac,
Falcon, Hunahpu,
Sovereign Plumed Serpent,
Bearer, Begetter,
Xpiyacoc, Xmucane,
Grandmother of Day, Grandmother of Light,
when it comes to the sowing, the dawning.

}} ~ Popul Vuh, translation: Dennis Tedlock


Th law which you don't break will break you.
Th language which you don't speak will speak you.

}} ~ Herbert Brün

(Hm... it seems this blog has become where I put things to forget about them - an oubliette of soorts.)

Friday, January 16, 2009

wherewhen AndR?

Words I have hardly given to this blogthing, & so, presumably, to some friends that read it. Hellohi! I will place myself in spacetime for you.


Fall Semester of School for Designing a Society ended, climaxing w/ a concert at our very house, La Casa. We had musicks, stories, essays, hangings, recitations, installations, & an intermission w/ popcorn jam. Jacob & I joined our goodfriend Rob in an aggregate we call, tentatively, JARBAND, to play one rock-ish version of Nodal Nim's 'how to ferment the colon' & a piece of theatre composed by Rob called, very tentatively, Cockroach Opera, & featuring Nodal Nim's 'stripes' w/ new lyrics by Rob & renamed 'gripes'. I enjoyed it & want more more more of it.

Visited at that time did Dogbody Lathus, goodfriend o' me, who now intends w/ Tilly T, alsogoodfriend, to move to Urbana for living & future SDaSing!

I took Greyhound home to Troy, NY & saw goodfriends from timespast. Had lots of jolly asynchronous conversation, wrote a lot, & generally felt at peace w/ universe. Spent Xmas w/ my mom & her man Bob. Made good food & good musick improvisationally w/ Scotty. Remembered how to meditate.

Greyhounded back to Urbana, IL to spend New Years w/ goodfriends out here. Anna hosted a gettogether gamenight, & we played Apples to Apples & Boggle, chatted, & made musick out of banjo, saw, toy piano, & apartmentbits.

Beth hosted another composition intensive, at which I made new friends, wrote up some bits about antijamming, reacquainted myself w/ th Blue Demon (my mandolin), & participated in smokey pancakemaking.

Went out hunting for something joblike, but have yet to find anything.

Read books. Cooked food. Ate food.

Inspired in part by a visit to th Prairie Zen Center in Champaign I started a daily sunrise meditation practice which I've continued for a week or so to th present day. Newfriend Caroline (who invited me initially to th Prairie Zen Center) joined me for th first few sessions, & since then, Jacob & my new housemate Ronna have also occasionally joined.

Attended one session of a "contemplative meditation" group hosted by newfriends Snow Leopard & Ty.

Started a dual journal w/ Jacob.

Reacquainted myself w/ my Cümbüş & taught some daysongs to Jacob, who then learned an accompanying part on tubulon (stainless steel tubes he has cut to play in 17edo). Played again w/ neutral scales.

Attended & helped at Oddmusic Convergence, hosted by Jacob, augmented by UnTwelve, at th Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center, whereat people of all sorts assembled instruments from parts strewn about, showed them off, played them w/ others, etc. Jacob performed Messiaen on udderbot w/ Snow Leopard. Jacob & I debuted tubes-Cümbüş musicks.

Started a daily(ish) morning schmooze w/ goodfriend Drew, at which we've discussed desire, determinism, doubletalk, description, radical constructivism, reality, & other topics beginning w/ "d" & "r".

Attended one evening, so far, of a poetry class taught by Michael Halloway, hosted at Michael Brün's house down th street from us. Showed Book of Days project, which I rather miss.

Played a bit of Go.

Survived w/ good humor th bitter cold (so far).

present (well, ok, more recent past)

Find myself needing a shower.

Feel pretty nice, & attribute it to getting good sleep, having a nice walk w/ Sophie in th sun, & finally getting around to writing for my blog.

Hear Jacob in th other room playing distorted hymns & singing along, as part of a compositional practice.

Run to catch th phone... don't quite make it...

Look forward to...

future (as predicted, wished for, expected, by me)

Will go to contemplative meditation w/ Snow Leopard & Ty at 5:30.

Will, hopefully soon, make steps toward a radio show w/ Jacob called, perhaps, "Talk Wrong Radio".

Intend to take a shower as soon as I post this.

Excited about new member of JARBAND, our friend Anna, who has agreed to our proposal to learn Jacob's tubes so he can play udderbot & trombone. Our new four-piece plans to do all 17edo music, including old Nim/Andrew songs, old Jacob songs, & new cybernetically-themed songs by all.

Will have a job sooner or later, & so a routine & rent money. Fingers crossed.

New interest in I Ching makes me wonder where a project involving that could take me.

Have plans to compose a song w/ Anna that "plays w/ policy".

Enjoy Buddhist & constructivist readings & plan to continue them into th future.

Would like to suggest a Go tournament w/ four or so local playerfriends.

Want to clean my room a bit later.

Mostly, I don't know what to expect of th future. I have no long-term plans at all. I rather like it that way, actually.

Now that I've mostly caught things up on this here blog, I'd like to share more up-to-date ideas & use it for organizing bits of this & that & that & this.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

(of Ever-Ever Land i speak

a poem by E. E. Cummings:

(of Ever-Ever Land i speak
sweet morons gather roun'
who does not dare to stand or sit
may take it lying down)

down with the human soul
and anything else uncanned
for everyone carries canopeners
in Ever-Ever Land

(for Ever-Ever Land is a place
that's as simple as simple can be
and was built that way on purpose
by simple people like we)

down with hell and heaven
and all the religious fuss
infinity pleased our parents
one inch looks good to us

(and Ever-Ever Land is a place
that's measured and safe and known
where it's lucky to be unlucky
and the hitler lies down with the cohn)

down above all with love
and everything perverse
or which makes some feel more better
when all ought to feel less worse

(but only sameness is normal
in Ever-Ever Land
for a bad cigar is a woman
but a gland is only a gland)