29 June 2005

Steve Jobs on design


I find it so peculiar that more occultists aren't designers and that more designers aren't occultists. I've married what I do as my career with what I do as a being on a spiritual quest. The best designers I see out there are beyond the artist vs designer debate, and I would presume the same of the best artists out there. There is no differentiation in today's world, is there? It's about working with the "soul" of a man-made platform or medium. As designers, we are playing as gods would, in a way. As a designer well-versed in occultism and sorcery, I have the potential to take it to a whole other level. More to come as I develop a site more geared specifically for occult design. (This blog is really just a test plaything for the time being.)

On the other hand, I suppose this could be said of any field, no? Deus ex machina, as we all come together to search for ways to find the deepest symbolic truth in what we do. From the mathematician to the poet to the architect to the humanitarian, there are always avenue that will lead the masters of their chosen field to these so-called "occult" areas of study. But what does that mean, I am not sure. I will explore it further late on.

via A Clear Eye
"In most people's vocabularies, design means veneer. It's interior decorating. It's the fabric of the curtains of the sofa. But to me, nothing could be further from the meaning of design. Design is the fundamental soul of a human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service."

I'm a big proponent of the importance of aesthetics and design to business success. One of my products (designed during my stint as a high tech business owner) even won an I.D. magazine design award. So I had to dig pretty deeply to discover what was bothering me while perusing my recent issue of Graphic Design USA.

Here it is. Most of the award winners, in categories ranging from annual reports and advertising to brochures and direct mail, are nothing but veneer. Deceptive, superficial show; a façadeto.

You read it right… deceptive! Most are creating false expectations. Expectations of encountering happy, funny, caring human beings. Or products and services that will blow us away. And you and I both know what we typically encounter.

Do I have a point? Yes I do. Read Steve Jobs description of design again: It's "the fundamental soul of a human-made creation that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service." The fundamental soul… that ends up expressing itself in successive outer layers of the product or service. Is that how you'd describe your latest ad or direct mail piece? C'mon.

McDonald's ads used to shout, "We like to see you smile?" Now it's, "I'm lovin' it." Really? Have you been to a McDonald's lately? Have you seen anyone smiling or lovin' anything? Veneer! My former bank portrays themselves in TV ads as the most sensitive, empathetic group of folks alive today (The descriptor "former" should give you a hint to the reality of that noise). Veneer!

I'm with Eames as design relates to business: "Design is a plan for arranging elements in such a way as best to accomplish a particular purpose." Now I'm not bashing designers or ad agencies. My guess is that no one has explained the purpose (a.k.a brand) to them. So they do the best that they can do, right? Even if it's a huge waste of the client's money.

The purpose of advertising, announcements, brochures, logos, direct mail, et al is to create an expectation. Period. Expectations that the company — and its partners — must be strategically poised to deliver on (also referred to as the experience). The experience of choosing and consuming a beverage. The experience of listening to and internalizing a sales presentation. The experience of being with a real estate, investment, law, accounting, medical, etc. professional. The experience of choosing a Sony. The outer layer. The one that touches the customer. That's what's critical today.

19 June 2005

Pendulums and serial killers

Police in Edmonton are looking for someone whom many people are calling a serial killer, targeting women. They have released a profile of a man they believe has killed several prostitutes and have offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.

[…] Since 1983, more than 20 Edmonton women have been found murdered. All are described by police as being prostitutes or having high-risk lifestyles and only five of the cases have been solved.

via the CBC


A list of all murdered Edmonton girls can be found here. He seems to have a penchant for 19- and 20-year-olds. Or else there is just a large number of very young street walkers in this city.

In the book Magical Use of Thought Forms, by Dolores Ashcroft-Nowicki & J. H. Brennan, they have some good methods on using pendulums to triangulate the location of hidden objects. The pendulums must be "attuned" to the so-called frequency of the hidden object, but it seems like an interesting method.

I leant my copy out to Jarvis and Dallas some time ago, but I believe they ordered me a new copy for next week. I am thinking of going down to the Legislature grounds to test it out. I've been meaning to for some time now but have never gotten around to it.

I know the police work with psychics. On two seperate occasions, friends informed me of a family friend that had worked with them in the past. I am wondering if it'd be possible to triangulate via pendulum over an area the size of the city?

Not to digress to fiction, but I will: I know Grant Morrison illustrated the example in The Invisibles where Ragged Robin and Jim Crow manage to triangulate the position of someone in London (I think they were looking for Boy or Dane McGowan… or maybe that was when King Mob had been kidnapped… whatever). However, the difference is that Robin and Crow worked solely off of Morrison's literary license of psychic sensitivities there. From what bits and pieces I've read on pendulism, I'm not sure just how exact you can get with it.

Worth a try, though.

I am also drunk right now. So we'll see if it actually gets done.

15 June 2005

Alberta is about to get wildly rich and powerful


I met with the public relations co-ordinator from Leduc County this morning and she seems stoked to get me on-board as a design consultant, and eventually involved in the re-branding initiative for the community. If it flies, she is represented by a group of PR co-ordinators for all of Northern Alberta, which would go as far north as regions like Fort McMurray. With all the money that will be flowing through this province in the next 50 years, this is perfect. There was even casual talk of turning Fort McMurray into a northern equivalent of Las Vegas, which I found more than interesting (and more than amusing).

Speaking of which, this article featured in the current issue of Maclean's is all about the increasing disparity that is going to develop between Alberta and Canada in the oncoming decades. As they put it, "The province can control its own destiny more than any other because, in the years to come, Canada will need Alberta far more than Alberta will need the rest of Canada."

Suncor's extraction plant on the bank of the Athabasca River looks like a science fiction movie set -- hundreds of kilometres of steel pipe twisted into incomprehensible knots around hulking industrial buildings, storage tanks and smokestacks. The whole scene is bathed in a constant haze of steam and exhaust. Two other such plants are now operating within an hour's drive of here, and several more are scheduled to commence operations over the next few years, all to exploit what may be the biggest petroleum deposit anywhere in the world, a sea of oil-saturated soil covering an area the size of New Brunswick. […]

"The oil sands give Canada one of the single greatest advantages of any state in the Western world," says Paul Chastko, a University of Calgary historian who recently published a book called Developing Alberta's Oil Sands. "It gives Canada the ability to supply all of North America for the next 50 years without touching a drop of imported oil." It is, in short, an economic engine and political lever that any nation would desperately love to have. […]

If these estimates are accurate, Canada's oil reserves rank second behind only Saudi Arabia's 260 billion barrels. And there are many who believe the current oil sands assessments understate the true potential here. The AEUB has projected that rising prices and improved technology could ultimately push the oil sands yield close to 300 billion barrels, which would make it the richest petroleum field in the world. By 2015, the oil sands are expected to be producing roughly three million barrels of petroleum a day. Assuming prices will average US$40 a barrel (well below where they are today), that suggests annual revenues of close to US$43 billion. […]

For a province that already boasts zero provincial debt, comparatively low taxes and a budget surplus, the future is bright, and promises to provide even better services, lower taxes and an influx of migration to the new western tiger. And in Canada, that could pose a problem.

In August 2001, Jean Chrétien foreshadowed the coming tension over Alberta's blossoming oil wealth during a speech in Edmonton. "We have to make sure that every person in every part of Canada benefits from the potential and the wealth that belongs to the people of Canada," he said. With those words, Chrétien jabbed a stick into the hornet's nest of western alienation. The reaction in the oil patch was swift and indignant. For many Albertans, it was just another sign that Ottawa was intent on stealing their birthright.

It was also a familiar story. In 1980, Pierre Trudeau's government imposed the National Energy Program, which slapped hefty export taxes on oil shipments and capped foreign investment in Canadian oil companies, in part to ensure that eastern Canada's manufacturing base had continued access to cheap oil. The program was deeply resented in Alberta, and was eventually scrapped by the Mulroney Conservatives. But the bitter aftertaste of the NEP remains.

Barry Cooper wasn't surprised at Chrétien's audacity. A University of Calgary political science professor and staunch critic of the federal Liberals, Cooper fully expects that, as the oil sands continue to develop, they will become a flashpoint in federal-provincial relations. Alberta already pays far more in equalization transfers to other provinces than it receives in federal program spending. And as the gap grows between rich Alberta and the poorer parts of the country, the demands to spread the wealth are sure to follow -- especially if prices for gasoline and heating oil skyrocket, as many predict. It's guaranteed to fan the flames of western discontent, Cooper says. "It's Alberta's oil if you live in Alberta and it's Canada's oil if you live in Ottawa," he says. "Energy has become the basic fault line of federalism."


And in regards to the Kyoto Accord:—
So far, the oil industry and federal government are making soothing noises about the impact of Kyoto on development. After initial threats that some oil companies would shelve projects if Canada signed on to Kyoto, industry players are now saying they can cope with the costs without destroying their businesses. But many questions remain about how Ottawa will roll emissions back to pre-1990 levels and who will pay for it.

Although producers like Suncor are reducing emissions on a per-barrel basis with better technology, and are researching ways to cut the amount of gas and water used in the extraction process, the total environmental impact of oil sands development is sure to increase substantially over the next decade. That has many convinced Ottawa is on a collision course with industry. "If government decides to clamp down hard on CO2 emitters to meet the Kyoto commitments, or if they use Kyoto and the treaty-making power to confiscate income that belongs to the province, the anger generated by the National Energy Program would pale in comparison," says Cooper.

Paul Chastko agrees, and says the environment is just one of many potential conflicts. What will happen if we're heading for a worldwide oil shortage that will send prices shooting higher? Will the rest of the country, particularly manufacturing-reliant commuter cities like Toronto and Montreal, be content to let Alberta profit while their industries are crushed by higher fuel prices, or will there be renewed calls for government intervention, as there were in the 1970s?

U of A lecture

Monday's lecture was a little more fractured than I would have liked it to have been. I have been so busy lately that I had little time to review notes and I've been trying to regulate sleeping with melatonin, but I need to get used to waking on it.

The videos went over well (of cymatic studies on liquid solutions, and powders). They gave a nice visual reference to the holographic theory I went through.

At the end of the class, however, as I was talking about eyesight, I disctinctly made eye contact with a number of students to get my point across, and this one girl was so bothered that near the end of the class as people were getting up she just wigged out and left. After the room had cleared out, I was talking to the prof and the girl came back. She inquired about my intentions and whether I had "done anything" to her. She was visibly shaken.

I told her I hadn't intentionally done anything, but that she may be naturally sensitive to subtler, intuitive elements. She was a science major, didn't believe in any of this, so I told her that was good, this way she had nothing to worry about.

Funny thing is, I had to drive out to St Albert to deposit money into my brother's bank account as he is in Australia. As I was exiting the bank, I swear it was her I ran into. She couldn't believe her eyes, scurried out to her car in the parking lot and was pointing unbelievably, smiling, at me to show her boyfriend. I just smiled and drove off.

At least she got something memorable from her university elective.

On the note of education, Jason also says that he is trying to get me into Grant MacEwan this fall semester to guest-speak on business practise. Somehow intertwining symbolism, myth, and consciousness with corporate responsibility, PR, marketing, and overall design and communication.

12 June 2005

What annoys women

I somehow subscribe to this e-mail thing and rarely read them. Whoever writes it essentially repeats himself (good effort on focus, I'll give him that) that what women want out of a guy is less wuss, more taking control. He really preaches "cocky homour," and for the most part I agree. He also tends to dumb it down to a Maxim-reading level.

But here are some quick tidbits from his last e-mail, before I delete it:—

Here are some of the things that many women
consider to be "annoying":

- Calling her too often

- Telling her that you have "feelings" for her too early

- Giving away your power to her and making her the boss

- Always asking a woman what she wants instead of leading

- Acting submissive and weak

- Accepting her demands, bossy-ness, and manipulative requests

- Being her doormat and putting your own needs aside

"WHAT?" you say.

"HOW COULD THIS BE?"... you might be thinking.

How is it possible that demonstrating your
affection for a woman by calling her, telling her
how you feel, letting her make the decisions, and
putting her first could be considered ANNOYING, of
all things?

Well guess what?

IT IS.

Women, and ESPECIALLY the most ATTRACTIVE and
desirable women usually consider the above things
to be VERY annoying.

Of course, the reason for this is because no matter how good these kinds of behaviors seem on the surface, there's only one conclusion that can be drawn from them:

THE MAN DOING THEM IS A BONAFIDE, 100% CERTIFIABLE WUSSY!

AND WOMEN AREN'T ATTRACTED TO WUSSIES.

NEVER.

Now, do I really, really, REALLY mean that women are NEVER, EVER attracted to Wussies?

I mean, isn't that an over-generalization?

Nothing is always true, right?

Well, this one IS.

Actually, what I MEAN is...

As far as generalizations go, this particular one is as close to being true all the time as they get.

And just in case I haven't said this enough, let me say it one more time... just to make sure it's clear:

WOMEN AREN'T ATTRACTED TO WUSSIES.


In more a more legitimate debate, however, I would go as far as saying that there are possible matches for everyone. The issue at hand, really, is finding someone on the same page as yourself.

i.e. Let us say that you're shy, uncultured, and lack self-esteem. Is the Los Angeles type supermodel dimebag crackwhore going to go for you? Chances are, no. Could you find a awkward girl at the college? Now your chances are going up.

It really comes down to self-worth and exploring different groups of people to find others that you enjoy, and that enjoy you. The more people you meet, the more you get to reflect on yourself through their eyes.

Then there is that last chance factor, the whole "chemistry" bit. Too many people settle, so fuck them. Then again, I've found some very interesting matches, girls I've dated that have really blown my mind, only to have the situation wither away in front of me as they moved on. (It's also not easy dating when many girls are raised Christian and I tend to be interested in the occult. Doesn't seem to jive.)

Chemistry, though… I've had it with the weirdest people. That is the one thing hard to predict I suppose.

Just avoid the Los Angeles-type girls. They're fucking gross. And chances are they're making up for some major lack of self-esteem, were fucked up as kids, and are generally looking for another figure to reflect an aspect of their youth that they never got over. Could be another daddy to treat them like shit, another abusive boyfriend, who cares. Anyone attractive will have a slough of guys pursuing them, guaranteed, but these L.A. types will garner a large following of the worst kind of guy: aggro muttfuckers who have a false sense of self-esteem rooted in picking on smaller kids up in high school — they're meatheads chasing after bimbos. Rule of thumb, avoid these girls:

Also, if you get the chance, punch them in the stomachs near their uteruses (wtf is the plural for "uterus"?) so they can no longer procreate.

Fucking stupid people procreating is another post altogether, for later.

11 June 2005

“Love You Long Time”

In this month's issue of Toro, not only is there Toro's Wedding Survival Guide — which was nicely imformative, seeing as how I have to help with Mark & Carmen's wedding for winter — but also, Bebe O'Shea writes a one-page article on Tantric sex education.

Perhaps this is another interesting idea of the conflict Jung points out (which I quote in this blog's header). "Where love rules, there is no will to power; and where power predominates, there love is lacking. The one is the shadow of the other." While my penis is generally pointing me in the direction I should(n't) be going, there is that part of me that tries to behave. No, better put = trying to find someone I can go further with. Or is it "farther"? I dunno. Where to? Not sure. But this little O'Shea article was a nice reminder to explore sensuality again as a door. One fellow he talks to, who got into it with his gf in Ottawa, run the site Tantra Sex. I used to be critical of Western bastardizations of Eastern forms, but on the other hand, this is also part of the mixing of the two cultures. The two videos suggested are Ancient Secrets of Sexual Ecstasy and Tantric Guide to Better Sex.

It's not hard to learn, it just requires a bit of breathing. Oh yeah. I forgot. And a partner. Perhaps I should just tie Melanie up, ball-gag her, and explore this.

There are also pics of Lost's Evangeline Lilly, who is actually from Fort Saskatchewan (about twenty minutes away), and 24's Elisha Cuthbert (from Calgary). I know Kiefer Sutherland is actually from Alberta, too, or maybe it's Donald Sutherland. Their ranch is down south, regardless.

The quest continues…

Tara in Oliver
Well, while I was listening to John Ralston Saul speak, Tara and Leslee were thieving a mannequin with a fairly expensive Kenneth Cole suit (the mannequin itself is worth like $4,000 – $5,000). Tara was having panic attacks when she woke up and this thing was sitting in her living room, realizing what they’d done (actually more the others than her, apparently). Thinking it a prank, they were sloshed at that fucking Suede fashion show, took the mannequin, and were going to set it up in front of Blair’s door with a stupid sign saying “Boo” or something, cuz apparently Blair is an idiot and a mannequin in a Kenneth Cole suit is going to scare him. This is their drunk reasoning. They also thought the mannequin was from Derks, which doesn’t make it any better but at least they know people from Derks. It turned up to be some fucking Urban wannabe store down on the south-ass end of the city.

So I agreed to do them this favour and took the suit and mannequin down to this place. The guy working there was none to pleased. Blair gave me the name of some guy he’d spoken to earlier, but the guy who was there in his stead was being a prick. He wanted names of the culprits, he told me a I was acting like a “sketchy criminal” or something. I just gave him my infoze and told him to invoice me for the damage, which Tara offered to pay. And I guess Tara actually sent them flowers, so that’s funny.

Whatever.

On another note, I heard back from Aspasia_of_Iqaluit, the girl I msg’d from Nerve, and I also went out with the new girl at work, Paula, for lunch Friday afternoon.

“Aspasia” is was acquiring her MFA from Brown University in the U.S., studying poetry. Apparently, this autumn, she is starting her PhD in Literature (Modern Poetry and the Occult) at Northwestern. I have no idea where that is, but I admit that it’s fairly intimidating to meet a beautiful young woman with similar interests as I do, getting a PhD on what it is I just tend to play with.

On the other hand, she may very well be a pretentious asshat. She emailed me, and implied she might be interested in hanging out while she’s in Edmonton for the summer. It’d be a treat to meet her, nonetheless. I just tend to dislike scholars.

Speaking of which, I have a lecture to prepare for. I speak at the University of Alberta this Monday evening. Feck. At least I have videos this time round. I should just pop in some Disinformation DVDs and sit down, drink my coffee, fall asleep.

Paula, whom I have no images of yet, sadly, is quite attractive. Great style, gorgeous body, and humbled from her “fat days” from high school. As we sat over lunch, she struck me as oddly similar to Melanie, however, which I don’t know how to feel about. The same sort of vain, hippie, hyperactive spirits. She may come out next Friday with Seana, Marcel, and me to Red Star. Or to play bocce, which might prove interesting.

I am thinking more and more about the idea of the whole adage, It comes when you aren’t looking or when you least expect it. Talking with Marcel, I think I also began to question what exactly it is I am looking for. Do I want someone inclined to the occult? Do I desire similarity, or difference? All this time I figured I’d wanted someone similar in nature, but perhaps something like Sarah, the Prada/Gucci girl, would be okay? She’s genuinely good shit, she’s aggressive, handles herself well, and listens to crappy music but whatever.
Sarah
What is it? What draws two people together? Why do I care? Am I really lonely enough that I can’t rid myself of the plague that are these thoughts? And by thoughts, I mean skirt-chasing.

All these questions, and in the end it’s all just chance, I think.

So the quest continues…

10 June 2005

Real live zombie game experience, sorta


Just watch this. What a great experiment! Not sure if it's a hoax or legal, but whatever.

The Warrior-Prophet


I just finished R. Scott Bakker's a-fucking-mazing second volume of The Prince of Nothing series. Seriously, if anyone out there is into literary fiction, historical warfare, mysticism or the occult, fantasy, or complex social mindfucks, READ THESE BOOKS.

ps — John Ralston Saul was okay. On a side, I totally didn't expect there to be so many hot girls there (well, for those under 40 that attended).

09 June 2005

experfecta


I came across this Spanish spitfire on Flickr. Worth checking out if words like moody, dark, and/or Lolita get you hard:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/experfecta/

Doing okay

His Excellency John Ralston Saul is speaking tonight on the collapse of globalism and the reinvention of the world. (His new book.) Canada's favourite Socratic troublemaker will be speaking at the Royal Alberta Museum tonight. Tickets are $7.50 at Audrey's downtown, and a portion of proceeds go to the Project Adult Literacy Society. Anyone reading this in River City should check it out, if you're not dumb… though, I doubt anyone that reads this is in the region seeing as how I don't let anyone know about this little exposé. Though, with my luck something will go awry and I will meet the Perfect Girl, then she'll find this and there will be something incriminating that sets her off and she'll kick me in the junk. Not before humping my dad and blowing my best friend, and killing my cat. And burning my books. That would suck, cuz I love my books.



I've also started donating monthly via direct debit to Amnesty International and Oxfam Canada. When work is more stable, I will also be setting up a monthly direct debit to the United Way for Edmonton and the World Wildlife Fund.

It's been on mind for a long time, but I've just never gotten around to it. I admit, I am not all into the actual activism part — that is, until I get cancer, then I'll be out canvassing and what not for cancer fundraising. But I do think what they do is important, and they need as much aid as they can get. And honestly, I can spare some money. People lived their entire lives giving all their shit to the fucking Church, I can afford to skip a few drinks and smokes in order to support a cause. And if everyone did it, or even like ten friends got into it, that'd be over $2,000 a year just for a minimum monthly donation.

If the tax man is going to take my dollars on one side, I may as well push some dollars in the other direction for something I think is more important.

On that note, Rebecca came by yesterday and she went on a libertarian rampage. I love her. Unfortunately, the only way a libertarian way of life would ever come into Canada would be through a revolution, coup, and death. Which, if anyone reads Tim Boucher's site, isn't that bad of an idea.

Though, Iceland was once governed by a very libertarian-styled government. And they have a new party called Frjálshyggjufélagið which is trying to implement libertarianism there and is running for Icelandic parliament in 2007.

Seriously, Frjálshyggjufélagið is the coolest name ever. If it were a girl, I'd want to hump her.

07 June 2005

Flickr means “faggot” in Dutch



My friend (ex?) just told me that Flickr means "faggot" in Dutch. Which makes it somewhat inappropriate to use in the Netherlands and Caribbean, I presume.

(Actually, it's "flikker" in Dutch, but that's the equivalent of me saying, Hi, please see my family fun pictures at W-W-W-faggot-dot-com.)

05 June 2005

“Seekers”

So a good friend has been hooking me up with some interesting opportuniteis lately. Firstly, there is her friend’s new clothing and apparel company out in Vancouver. Called Jade, it’s a skateboarding company geared towards a very aggressive brand for women. I like the logo I submitted, and the owner, Tanya Berger, got back to me and give me quick props for my work. On the other hand, I am not a big fan of “contests” for design work. It doesn’t allow for direct communication as a brand is developed. Though, this is hardly the 2010 Vancouver Olympics we’re talking about and all the hoo-hah that was raised by the GDC over their handling of the logo. It’s a small clothing company on the coast. And I am always willing to do a favour for her and her friends.
Jade logo submission
She also forwarded me an email detailing a new tv show being produced, called Seekers:—
TV Personality Ralph Benmergui (used to work for CBC) is seeking 5 seekers willing to go on the spiritual road trip of a lifetime.

SEEKERS will be a new faith-based lifestyle/documentary series to air in a six-part series for VisionTV and ONE: The Body, Mind & Spirit Channel.

Five diverse Canadians chosen will be invited to join Benmergui on what producers bill as an unpredictable three-week journey to spiritual hotspots across North America - from Tibetan Meditation under a crystal pyramid in Sedona, Arizona to Shamanistic healing on Cortes Island BC.

The casting assistant, a woman named Lorraine Houston, has called me a couple times and emailed me. I will try to get in touch with her in the next few days. I figure it might be an interested experience — and that I may be their token troublemaker. Let’s say they get together a fucking Christian, Jew, Muslim, maybe a so-called Buddhist or something, and then there’ll be me: a happy rep for everything that is evil to them. Even some Western Buddhist, I could find something to offend. Perhaps explore the Dzogchen. Hell, I even made a Reiki master cry months ago using philosophical examples of rape and depravity in some conversation we were having.

Not much to be proud of, if I think about it actually. Regardless, it’d be fun. I need a vacation.

02 June 2005

Natalie Glebova crowned Miss Universe


via the CBC
The new Miss Universe is a model from Toronto, 23-year-old Natalie Glebova.

A 12-judge panel in Bangkok selected the Ryerson University graduate from among five finalists after a round of on-stage questions. There were entrants from 81 countries in the 54th annual pageant.

And here are some better pics of her doing her modelling thing, care of Babe-O-Rama.

Church of the SubGenius in Edmonton

Kyle and I were at New City having a drink and some late lunch, and as we were walking I came across these stencilled images of Bob, the iconic buddy guy of the Church of the SubGenius. This obviously got me to wondering about whom the perpetrators may have been. It's not like it's a large community, especially in the Prairies... but ya never know, I suppose.

And then the other day I stopped by Populuxe (10754 124 Street, Edmonton), on Greg Ball's recommendation, and wanted to check out these Eames chairs he made mention of. I presume these are them, I didn't check them out thoroughly, though they were nice and going for $250 a piece. I had the $500, but I also needed to pay rent and have yet to wire some money to my brother in Australia before he heads on his cross-continent scooter ride. So instead I bought a sexy Adidas jacket.

Star Wars Episode III: A steaming pile of Sith

I went to see the much lauded Episode III a couple weeks ago with Mark, Carmen, Jeremy, Brad, and Miriam. All six of us were gagging half of the movie, and crying at the other half which George Lucas's ego, which so brazenly managed to ruin all of our childhoods for us. This movie caps off one of the most horrible attempts at re-franchising ever thunk up. I fucking hate you, George Lucas.

Via Maddox and Tim



I didn't think it was possible to be more unimpressed with Star Wars. Today, I stand corrected. If you were unfortunate enough to hear your stupid co-workers yammering on about Lucas' latest shit burger, you might have heard them saying something like "I didn't like the first two, but this one was good!" When I ask why, these people have trouble responding because it's hard to talk with George Lucas' flaccid penis in their collective mouths. Perhaps the question I should be asking is "why didn't you like the other two movies if you liked this one?" Nothing has changed. You have the same vacant-looking actors running around, aimlessly bumping into things, an army of stupid, sensitive robots, and dialogue clumsy enough to warrant putting a handicap sticker on George Lucas' car.

To Lucas' credit, he was tacitly shamed into not giving Jar Jar any talking lines in this movie. With Jar Jar's character no longer speaking to annoy you, Lucas filled the void by giving every robot in the movie stupid toy noises. So instead of doing something cool like having the robots chase after screaming children, they bitch and moan and say things like "ow" when they get their prosthetic limbs chopped off. Even worse are the idiots who scarf down these sub-childish morsels of comedic relief, playing into Lucas' shallow theatrics so easily that you could sell these people hookers in a vagina storm.

Before I go on, I have to address something that all you stupid Star Wars nerds are probably thinking right about now: "But Maddox, it's a movie made for kids, what do you expect?!" Even Lucas stated in an interview with the BBC that:

"The movies are for children but [the fans] don't want to admit that."

Oh really? It just so happens that this "children's movie" has a scene where a guy gets his hands chopped off, a graphic decapitation, the wanton slaughter of children (the highlight of any movie), and the coolest scene in any space action movie starring Ewan McGregor: Anakin getting his legs chopped off as his stumps catch fire while his face melts. By the way, if you haven't seen this movie yet, don't read the previous sentence.

The most damning thing about this epic waste of time is the piecemeal plot thatched together with just enough good will and nostalgia to pacify the average idiot (i.e., you). Besides all the jedis in the movie being morons who are unable to detect conspiracies involving the cooperation of thousands of soldiers, Lucas does his best to make this movie extra insulting to our intelligence:

Senator Palpatine seduces Anakin to the dark side in about as much time as it takes for you to finish reading this sentence. Nevermind the fact that Anakin knows Palpatine is a Sith lord before accepting his offer, or that Sith lords are known for doing things like, oh.. I don't know, KILLING MILLIONS OF PEOPLE. Anakin is on a mission to save his wife, Padme, from certain death! Or at least likely death. Okay, it was a dream. But it seemed pretty real during the flashback sequence, so Anakin has no reason not to believe this dream will come true, as is the tendency of dreams.

Near the end, Lucas takes a shit on the script and makes his crew translate it into an ending that putters across the finish line. The product is a scene where Anakin tries to literally choke Padme using the force:

Yes, that's right. The entire reason Anakin switched to the dark side becomes unraveled when he tries to kill Padme, who was the reason he switched to the dark side to begin with. Oops! Of course, Star Wars apologists will try to point out that Anakin was already under the influence of the "dark side" at this point. So that's why the first thing he asks as Darth Vader is whether Padme is safe, right you morons?

Even after pointing out these serious problems with the plot, Star Wars nerds will still try to get you to admit one thing: "you have to admit that the special effects were good, right?"

NEWS FLASH: Episode III had no special effects.

They're not "special effects" anymore when they're found in EVERY SCENE. Lucas has done the seemingly impossible: he has made something that was once so unique that people called it "special" by name, and turned it into something so ordinary that nobody raises an eyebrow during a scene where a guy is having a sword fight on the back of a giant beast. By the way, I have to admit that the creature design was very creative in this episode; modeled after frilled lizards and ticks, Lucas tapped the well of innovation dry on this one. Congratulations Lucas, we don't care about "special" effects anymore.

Speaking of, that reminds me of the character "General Grievous" a bad guy so sinister, his very name stands for PAIN AND SUFFERING. Nice job assholes. Tired of thinking up awesome names like "Lord Dooku" and "Nute Gunray" for your bad guys? Why not just call all your characters "Evil" and "Bad" next time? All Grievous needed was a monocle, and a large black moustache that he could twirl as he cackled "I'll get you, if it's the last thing I do!" Ditch this bullshit.

222,425 dipshits camped out in line for this movie only to realize that it sucks like the other 5.

01 June 2005

Alleged sex offender Brian Peppers

It’s easy to crack jokes in this case, but it brings to mind an interesting thought about the adage: As above, so below. Imagine how unique this Brian Peppers’s perception of the world must be. Could any of us walk a day in his soles? (Yes, the stupid pun crossed my mind, so fuck off.)

And this guy never had the fame or money to buy kids into his outstretched arms like, say, that other oddity, Michael Jackson, had.

Casting sigil magic to get laid

Lately, a few persons have approached me about learning to cast sigils. Now, albeit one of the easiest magic tricks to perform in one’s life, I don’t think people really realise the phenomenology behind how sigils do their work.

(NOTE — I admit, I just learned about the plural form of the word sigil as sigila, rather than the anglicised sigils. It looks so much more fun.)

So for example, let’s talk about getting laid, or even the silliest move anyone can make in a sigil and create an intent for someone to fall in love with you. People get into a fluff about this because they’re presuming that someone is casting a Hollywood magic trick on them: cast this spell, they instantly change and wanna fuck your brains out.

It doesn’t work that way. Say I meet some bar star that I wanna fuck or some girl that works at the local restaurant or pub, so I cast a sigil: I will Jane Doe to want to give me oral pleasures. Okay, so we get down to doodling our sigil out of IWLJNDTGVRPS, or whatever your preferred method is. (I use a female in this instance, but for any women out there just think of some guy whose heart you wanted to seduce, then destroy.)

Over time — and I’ve had sigils do their thing for years — a lot of magicians neglect to admit to themselves that the sigil will change them as much as the events apparently outside of their self. So this Jane Doe, I wanna get it on with her. She may be so completely incompatible with me, from taste in music to literature to cinema to food, that if I actually got to know her I’d want to knock her teeth out and skull-fuck her with the bumper of my car. But I don’t know that yet. My ego is whispering to me (or is it my dick) that I want to chew on her tits, slap her thighs, bruise her ass, and pull at her hair.

So we cast our sigil, jerking off on some our wee glyph, asking God to hook us up. So what needs to happen to bring this about? Truly, it could come down to someone feeding her Rohypnol and you tripping, having your wang accidentally slide into her. That’s not very plausible, however, though nor is magic I suppose, so never mind.

Whether she changes at all, bringing about an attraction to you, is questionable. It was her you cast the sigil after, her you want to fuck, her, her, her. Sure, just your body, but your mind is trying to fill in the blanks and has no reference point cuz you don’t know her. So what may very well happen is that you may start hanging out with a crowd she knows. Not a crowd you particularly like, but any number of reasons may draw you into this social clique. You may dress differently. You may take on a different attitude, become cockier, gentler, more artistic, more sporty, whatever. Or at least try to take on the appearance of such. You may have something semi-traumatic happen which skews your perception or way you act. These things bring you closer to her. Without you knowing it. A few things of a similar nature may happen to her, cuz she’s going to have to have something in common with you to even spark a conversation or something.

Though, if you cast a sigil and end up in a stuck elevator with her while she’s testing out one of those hidden strap-on vibrators, and maybe she’s on ecstasy or something, and for the next three hours she breaks down and offers to fuck your brains out… kudos to you, that’s good magic.

But because the Game of Life is all about the gods’ experiences through us, chances are they’ll throw something in there to make the viewing interesting — at least for them.

So essentially, you may very well become, over a month, a year, a decade?, someone you don’t particularly like. All in the name of a base instinct to procreate, encoded by social means of what is attractive.

I tried this once to interesting effect. Years ago I met a girl, not of my clique, not of my upbringing, and of a social character I generally had grown to dislike. I was mean to her when we first met, and she learned to avoid me for the first few months (we worked together). But I was mean because I took it upon myself to presume that she was all looks and no thinks; also, one of our staff made mention that “She’s pretty. Period,” after asking about her. In time, we came to talk and it turned out we got along decently. I was sexually attracted to her so I cast an experimental sigil out to see what would come of it.

Over the years, we grew together as friends, had some close calls sexually, have developed a peculiar friendship, and explored and talked about our sexual attractions but never fully pursued them. I never pushed it as far as it may have gone, I’m lazy that way, but looking back at it now I realise that she does host the characteristics I despise in women. Sure, many girls have these dispositions, but it really came out in her and her friends. So why was I friends with her? She does have an intelligent side, but it was often neglected in the name of drugs, liquor, and chasing boys.

I can look back and see changes made in the way I perceived these groups of girls, the neighbourhood in which they were raised, their clubs, music, and social habits. I tried them out, I bitched and complained, but I went out regardless. I put up with clucking hens, pointless indulgences, and foolish debauchery (not even the cool kind), hanging out with the über-vain of Edmonton and listening to the same, repetitive You look so thin and I just adore your shoesies.

Why? Was it the doing of the sigil? My penis? My natural disposition to try to get to know hot chicks that might be hiding a pension for intelligence and character? Chances are it’s all of these things, but I do believe the sigil played a part. If I hadn’t cast the sigil, I doubt I’d have been as close to her and have developed the oddly unique, ambiguously flirtatious friendship that we had.

But I didn’t fuck her. Though she’d be fun in bed, and she’s a good cuddler, we both have a similar standard in regards to gratuitous sex. So even though the Universe may have brought up events to bring us together to form this bond, deeper beneath the veil of my magical request and the intermittent phenomenon that took place and were affected by such a request, we had issues more important to us than getting our pink parts sucked. The ego colours my requests to the Universe, but essentially there are important issues beyond it that seem to stay prevalent.

The ego is indeed an illusion, and social taboos and means are there to create new dramas, but they will ultimately bring you down the right paths necessary. The only horrible thing any individual can do is neglect their destinies, fight the opportunities — good and bad — that are thrown their way. For the more you deny the gods their entertainment, the more they’ll kick you in the ass to get back on track, harder and harder until either you self-destruct or come to through trauma or some other equally harsh realisation.

I guess what I am looking at here is that it’s okay to cast a sigil for whatever — revenge, love, sex, power — but always remember that the road it will take you on to get your desire will change you more than it may change the rest of the world. A simple concept to quantum theorists, mystics, and occultists, but truly try to wrap your head around the fact that we don’t see the universe as it is, we see it as we are.

To brand occult design

Okay, so I need to sit down this week and really go over a branding strategy for this occult design site. I agree with Jordan that the word “occult” carries to much baggage that may be too difficult to slough off. I’ll explore this further over the next few days. The design work I am doing for Dharmadhatu Reiki should aid, too, because it’s essentially in the same vein. Tim has passed on the concept to the fellows at two more occult blogs who are also involved in design. We'll see how this develops.

Here are some synonyms of the words which we have to explore to develop this (thanks to Thinkmap’s Visual Thesaurus):—