Ramblings & ephemera

Umberto Eco on books

From Umberto Eco’s “Vegetal and mineral memory: The future of books” (Al-Ahram Weekly: 20—26 November 2003): Libraries, over the centuries, have been the most important way of keeping our collective wisdom. They were and still are a sort of universal brain where we can retrieve what we have forgotten and what we still do not […]

Poetry: Johnny Mercer’s “Early Autumn”

Man, these are beatiful, evocative lyrics by Johnny Mercer: When an early autumn walks the land and chills the breeze and touches with her hand the summer trees, perhaps you’ll understand what memories I own. There’s a dance pavilion in the rain all shuttered down, a winding country lane all russet brown, a frosty window […]

Van Gogh on death

From Roger Ebert’s “Go gentle into that good night” (Roger Ebert’s Journal: 2 May 2009): Van Gogh in Arles wrote this about death: Looking at the stars always makes me dream, as simply as I dream over the black dots representing towns and villages on a map. Why? I ask myself, shouldn’t the shining dots […]

The color of the TV you watch determines the color of your dreams

From Richard Alleyne’s “Black and white TV generation have monochrome dreams” (The Telegraph: 17 October 2008): New research suggests that the type of television you watched as a child has a profound effect on the colour of your dreams. While almost all under 25s dream in colour, thousands of over 55s, all of whom were […]

Gottman on relationships

From THE MATHEMATICS OF LOVE: A Talk with John Gottman (Edge: 14 April 2004): So far, his surmise is that “respect and affection are essential to all relationships working and contempt destroys them. It may differ from culture to culture how to communicate respect, and how to communicate affection, and how not to do it, […]

Denver International Airport, home to alien reptilians enslaving children in deep dungeons

From Jared Jacang Maher’s “DIA Conspiracies Take Off” (Denver Westword News: 30 August 2007): Chris from Indianapolis has heard that the tunnels below DIA [Denver International Airport] were constructed as a kind of Noah’s Ark so that five million people could escape the coming earth change; shaken and earnest, he asks how someone might go […]

Paul Graham’s lessons for startups

From Paul Graham’s “The Hardest Lessons for Startups to Learn“: 1. Release Early. The thing I probably repeat most is this recipe for a startup: get a version 1 out fast, then improve it based on users’ reactions. By “release early” I don’t mean you should release something full of bugs, but that you should […]

Night terrors

From Science News’ “Night of the Crusher: The waking nightmare of sleep paralysis propels people into a spirit world“: As a college student in 1964, David J. Hufford met the dreaded Night Crusher. Exhausted from a bout of mononucleosis and studying for finals, Hufford retreated one December day to his rented, off-campus room and fell […]

Ben’s crazy dream

Following is a dream from my buddy Ben’s blog, in May 2002. Ben’s dreams are great. Most people’s dreams are boring as hell, at least when they’re retelling them to you, but I always enjoy Ben’s. In fact, I still have an email he sent me 5 years ago describing a dream he had involving […]