Friday, February 20, 2009

Video: If I Made a Commercial for Trader Joe's

Who doesn't love Trader Joe's? This is a funny fan ad created by Carl's Fine Films, who describes this as an "unauthorized commercial for Trader Joe's shot on my Palm Treo before I accidentally ran over it with my car." The song perfect represents the TJ vibe.

There's a Trader Joe's three blocks from where I live. My favorite TJ things: good cheap wine, Parrano cheese for half the price of regular stores, feta cheese, organic marinara sauce, black bean dip, flattened bananas, choco-covered graham bites. I have more but I'll stop now.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Art: Wordle creates images from words

You can make your own word art at Paste in any text, website address, or rss feed and go. After the image is generated you can play with options such as shape, colors, orientation, number of words to use, and fonts.

The fonts (typefaces) have funny names: Gunplay, Telephoto, Boopee, Sweater School Rg, Duality, Kenyan Coffee, Sexsmith, Owned, Silentina Movie, Tank, Scheme, Loved by the King, Alphabet Fridge Magnets All Caps, King Typewriter, plus more.

I made this Wordle from my Twitter posts. You can get a text file archive of all of your tweets on Twitter from TweetScan.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Advert: Check these eyebrows

I can't help but love the uber-creative ad spots the folks at Fallon come up with.

Eyebrow Dance

Cadbury’s Dairy Milk ad
agency: Fallon
creative: Nils-Petter Lovgren
production company: MJZ London
director: Tom Kuntz

Monday, February 16, 2009

Fucking David Foster Wallace (free)

Yeah, I know he's dead and all, but I have to be straight up: I couldn't get even half through An Infinite Jest. The novel was pretentious and hipster and navel-gazing and as hard to get into as any James Joyce piece of work.

I'm mostly alone in my opinion of David Foster Wallace, I realize. To be fair, I liked a few of his short stories in the collection Girl with Curious Hair. His writing was sharp and insightful in short form, particularly the first few in that collection. (The ones toward the end, meh, not so much.)

If I don't have anything else to do on Thursday April 26th, I might end up at the Hugo House and give fucking David Foster Wallace one more chance. I like the reader line up.

Reading and Celebration in Memory of David Foster Wallace
Thursday, February 26th 2009, 7:00 pm
Richard Hugo House

Hugo House is hosting a special event celebrating the life and work of writer David Foster Wallace. Local luminaries David Schmader, Cienna Madrid, Paul Constant and other writers and performers will read from their most beloved of the late author’s work.

Wallace, who died tragically last September at the age of 46, was a writer of singular importance and influence, both as a literary stylist and as an exacting, hilarious, and heartbreaking examiner of the cultural and existential absurdities and tragedies in contemporary America. Come hear some of your favorite of Wallace’s essays, novels, and short fiction, or be introduced to this extraordinary writer for the first time.

For further information, contact Cristin Miller at

Make the story happen

In the dichotomous choice of cat or dog, I am dog. All the way. Not that I hate cats, I'm just mostly indifferent. (Just like a cat.) Yet, even I like this amusing video, Kittens Inspired by Kittens:

Yes, cat funny (LOL). But the video also perfectly captures what kidlets under 5 have in abundance: energy, creativity, and the ability to see the simply obvious. It's been 15 years since living with a 5-year old, so I forget the magic of a young child learning and shaping their world.

It reminds me to take time to think simply, to see the obvious, and to make the story happen.

(via LeeLeFever)

p.s. Please don't send me links to other "cute kid" videos. I can only tolerate one every three to six months. If you ignore my request, you'll get links to movies of my dog and of my vacations. The links will be disguised so well as to be irresistable. Be cool. Thank you.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

A luxe date night on the cheap tonight

Tonight is the opening of a new art show hanging at Vermillion with local singer/songwriter PWRFL Power performing for the opening event. The art opening and performance tonight are free, so being broke is not an excuse to stay in. Get out and get on some art, music, and night air tonight.

This month's show at Vermillion, An Unfinished Edge, is about ambiguity, the spaces between, and what can happen when the observer is not supplied with the critical information of a story. Concerned with ideas of habitat, the work addresses conflicts and comparisons between the natural and human worlds.

Vermillion is an unpretentious space on Capitol Hill with art in the front and a comfortable, hip, and inexpensive wine and beer bar in the back. It's a great pre-func or meet up spot any time you're on the hill. The design of the space is lovely; the board games and 45s jukebox encourage lingering and hanging out. Although wi-fi isn't provided by Vermillion, I've been able to jump on neighboring networks easily enough.

Peeps are passionate about tonight's performer PWRFL Power: it's love or hate, with no middle ground. (More.) If you haven't heard him before, tonight's a no-risk chance to form an opinion.

Even if you aren't into the music, your trek to the hill is not a waste. There's lots of art to check out in the neighborhood: it's the monthly Capitol Hill Art Walk tonight. Capitol Hill Seattle created a handy walking map of participating businesses.

1508 11th Ave
Capitol Hill, between Pike and Pine

An Unfinished Edge, opening Thursday, February 12, 2009
Live Music by PWRFL Power And Guest DJs
6pm - Late, Free

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

2009 is International Year of Astronomy: Local Notes

2009 is the International Year of Astronomy, so here's two Seattle-related bits of cosmic news to start off the month of Galileo's birthday:

  • Mt. Rainier made an appearance in NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day yesterday

  • On February 15th, the Museum of Flight will unveil two new large-sized prints of multi-wavelength images of the spiral galaxy Messier.

Astronomy Picture of the Day is an unadorned site of gorgeous photos accompanied by explanations in plain English. The photo above is of lenticular clouds near Mt. Rainier, taken in December 2008. Browse the APOD archive for more amazing pics. I particularly like this one: The Milky Way Over Mauna Kea. Wow.

The two new prints at the Museum of Flight combine images from NASA's Great Observatories: the Hubble Space Telescope, Spitzer Space Telescope, and Chandra X-Ray Observatory. The prints are provided by NASA as part of NASA's participation in International Year of Astronomy. One print displays the combined Hubble-Spitzer-Chandra images. A second print is a triptych that displays the three high-resolution images from Hubble, Spitzer, and Chandra side by side and with description captions below. The Museum of Flight is one of 100 organizations across the country to recieve two new prints from NASA. More info on the Museum of Flight's Happy Birthday Galileo! and print unveiling event to be held on February 16th.