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wednesday, may, 31

Metafilter: Wow. Motley Crue really gets it – a flash cartoon that promotes their tour, promotes their new single, promotes their point of view (and, by association, their brand), and disses their competition. It's meta-marketing. It's post-advertorial. It's pre ... uh ... oh, hell. I think I ran outta buzzwords. Remember when heavy metal was just about cars and girls?   + 7:03 PM

Anyone who can read this page from top to bottom and still eat a steak is way better at rationalization than I'll ever be. I haven't eaten meat for over ten years, though I do eat fish sometimes. Your morality may vary. (Note: I don't care what you eat. I'm way past the point of imposing my morality on anybody else. Just do me a favor and give me the same courtesy. Thanks.) [via ev]   + 6:42 PM

I love paper boxes! Very cool.   + 5:38 PM

I am oh so happy to read that Apple is rethinking its keyboard and mouse. I love my new G4 at work, but the keyboard is flimsy and difficult to type on and I lost the mouse the first chance I got. But will Apple be smart enough to include a scroll wheel, or, dare to dream, a right button?   + 5:19 PM

I just designed postcards for one of the Powazek Productions and ordered 500 of them from a printing company. They should arrive next Friday. I can't wait. (Hint: they're very blue.)   + 5:05 PM

Oh no! It's the leering over your glasses photo gallery!   + 2:30 PM


tuesday, may, 30

Perfection.   + 6:31 PM


monday, may, 29

It's Memorial Day today. Here in America that means barbecues and storewide clearance sales. But in Europe they know from memorials. Last year I found myself in Amsterdam for Memorial Day, and I'll never forget what happened. (It's a very personal story, so please tread lightly.)   + 12:05 PM

Phew. I feel much better now. I think my main point from yesterday was this: remember that there are people behind the pages. Real people. And none of us are stars. Thanks to everyone who sent me rays of hope. I appreciate it.   + 11:59 AM


sunday, may, 28

On hurt feelings, negative blogging, and Jack Nicholson:

I have been on the web since there was one. And it has always filled me with hope.

At first I channeled this hope into making homepages for myself. But soon I wanted to make sites where everyone could participate. So I did that. And it was wonderful. But, in the process, I wound up not doing much for myself. And the people who loved the sites I made started to treat me like a star. It made me very uncomfortable.

When I got into blogging, I thought that, maybe, if I posted some of my thoughts every day, it could be a fun outlet for me. And, in the process, people would see that I'm just a big webgeek like everyone else. Human.

So I blogged. And, for the most part, it was fun. My email was filled with encouragement. I thought, maybe, it was working.

But, somehow, eventually, it backfired. Some people, for whatever reason, resent me. For just being here, I guess. For being online.

And this pains me so much. Because all I've ever wanted to do is encourage everyone else to take to the web and tell their stories as I have. Because that's what I believe the web is for. It's for you.

But more and more, it feels like the web is not for me. To many people, it seems like I am not a person. I am Jack Nicholson. I am a star you'll never meet. Someone you can deride because they're not really a person. I am an object, a metaphor, an example. I am an argument waiting to happen. Something to be debated or loved or hated. But not a person.

Well fuck that. I have a goddamned pulse.

If you don't like what I do on the web, do it different.

If you don't like this site, then don't come here anymore.

But stop treating me like an object. Stop treating me like a star. Stop it.

Because I am not a star. I have a voice that is no louder or more important than yours.

It is for these reasons and so many more that I fully support Dink's Non-Negative Blogging. Remember that personal sites are digital stand-ins for real people. And that stardom on the web is only one click deep.

(And now I'm going outside. It's a beautiful day out there.)   + 2:18 PM

Happy birthday, Mister Bastard!   + 1:46 PM


friday, may, 26

Hey, cool! I just noticed that back on the 16th fray.net was a Project Cool Sighting. Sez the site: "Visit Today's Sighting to see an alternative to the bland, navigation tabs of so many sites."   + 11:01 AM


thursday, may, 25

Awww.   + 11:20 PM

If you see hatred all around you, it's probably because that's all you see inside you.   + 8:32 PM


wednesday, may, 24

wisdom in email today:

    You don't need to call them anything. Just do. Weblog schmeglog, whatever. Kerouac just drove up and down the peninsula and then wrote about it. Other people argued (and still do) over what it should be called.

Amen.   + 7:15 PM

Okay. I'm a mac person. Totally one hundred percent. If it hadn't been for the macintosh, I would never have gotten into computers. So should I feel guilty about how much I absolutely adore my new Microsoft Intellimouse Explorer? The scroll wheel, the right-click, the evil red light, the back and forward buttons built right in ... drool ... it's bliss. I'm sorry, Steve.   + 1:52 PM

I love that I can follow Jack and Jessica as they drive across the country with all Jack's stuff. Makes me long for a road trip of my own.   + 1:46 PM

Two days ago I got in my car to drive to a friend's house and the most awful sound came out – a giant roar that can only mean one thing: my muffler had died. Imagine my little white Honda civic, cruising the streets of San Francisco, roaring like a Harley. I should just paint flames on the side and go with it.

It reminded me of when I drove a VW bug named Rosie years ago. She was my first car – I bought her for less than the cost of my new ergo desk chair – and she made all sorts of awful noises on a regular basis. It was back then that I learned the proper way to fix a broken muffler.

Duct tape? Chewing gum? No, it's even easier than all that. Just crank up the stereo.

It still works.   + 12:39 PM


tuesday, may, 23

Greg is back! Run! Run for the hills!   + 5:00 PM

All is full of love.   + 12:36 PM

Big news from c|net: In a comparison of apples and oranges, apples win!   + 11:52 AM

What these people will never understand is that users (and readers and consumers) can smell a hard-sell coming from miles away. When personal storytelling is perverted to push product, the whole art form suffers. Eventually the audience will learn that, if it's an emotional story, it must be trying to sell something. What a shame. [Thanks to Ian for the link, I think.]   + 9:37 AM


monday, may, 22

That Pac Bell is such a tramp.   + 5:41 PM

"When you attack a personal web page, you are making a personal attack." Well said, Dink.   + 10:31 AM


sunday, may, 21

Today was beautiful beyond words. Probably the most beautiful day in San Francisco all year. I knew what I had to do.

The bike ride through the park was wonderful enough. I cranked up the cd player and sang along with Lauryn: "change comes eventually." When I got to Ocean Beach I did something I haven't done for a long time – I jumped in. The Beach patrol guy was nice enough to watch my bike as I headed for the water, past the swarms of people. The water made me shiver and shake but I went all the way in. Dunked my head. And screamed.

I hadn't done that in fifteen years.   + 6:30 PM


saturday, may, 20

Important news from Pyra. (Note: anyone who refers to me by the name mentioned in this article will be greeted by the coldest over-the-glasses stare I can muster.)   + 6:52 PM

did you know part one: Did you know that Michael Sippey, who publishes Stating the Obvious, now has a weblog? Truth be told, he had a feature at The Obvious years ago called Filtered for Purity that was essentially a weblog. Michael always was before his time.

did you know part two: Did you know that Lance Arthur, who publishes Glassdog, now has a weblog? (Or two?) This is, of course, the guy who said that weblogs were "link pages masquerading as home pages." But we all knew that beneath that crusty exterior was a warm mass of creamy goodness. Kinda like a Twinky. Or a cockroach.   + 3:49 PM

He said, she said is just fantastic. Personal stories with real voices. (Kinda makes me miss Regarding.)   + 3:29 PM

meta-meme: Weblogs are webcams for the brain – a tiny window into what the creator is thinking about, updated all the time. Pass it on.   + 1:07 PM

When I grow up, I want to be Ira Glass.   + 1:02 PM


friday, may, 19

Silly office news: today my computer arrived, which made me happy. (Yes, I am the only Pyrate without a webcam, but I make up for it by appearing on all the others.)   + 9:03 PM

See? Tough guys wear purple, too. (Nice shirt, Isaac!)   + 9:20 AM


thursday, may, 18

"It is like any other agriculture: if you hoe it and harrow it and water it enough, you can make three blades of it grow where none grew before."
That's Mark Twain talking about hope.   + 11:29 PM


wednesday, may, 17

As much as I may have disliked the original, I've gotta admit: the blogger version of the wassup commercial is just too damn funny (and I love the fact that the sutrocam is Dookie). Excellent work, John!   + 9:05 PM

Speaking of the concert last night, it was wonderful. Aimee Mann is an inspiration to watch and Michael Penn is one of my favorite songwriters ever. Their stage chemistry was funny – they were clearly having a good time up there. Wanna see?   + 7:48 PM

Last night at the concert, Michael Penn sang the sorrowful chorus of one of my favorite songs: "Don't call me highness. It's a long ... way ... down...."   + 3:05 PM

My old friend Caterina now has a weblog. Welcome, Cat!   + 2:25 PM

Be sure to read all the way to the end.   + 12:39 AM


tuesday, may, 16

... and I smell like one too!

Today is my 27th birthday. Presents started just past midnight. (Books and cameras and knives, oh my!) Then some sleep and a yummy breakfast at Zazie. Tonight: Aimee Mann and Michael Penn at Bimbo's. Life is good.

Thanks to everyone who sent birthday wishes. You give me hope.   + 12:18 PM


monday, may, 15

One of the things that's funny about being a freelancer is how similar it is to dating. Conversations about clients always wind up sounding like relationship talk.

I like you, but only as a contractor.
I really like this client, but I'm just not ready to settle down.
I hear that when you meet the right client, you'll know.

It was three years ago that Electric Minds hit the pavement and I went freelance. Stepping out on my own was scary as hell, and incredibly rewarding. It allowed me to grow in some very important ways. But, ultimately, it was also limiting.

Now it's time for a change.

Today is my first day as Creative Director of Pyra. I am incredibly excited to work with such a group of inspiring, talented people. And, mom? Yes, I'll have health insurance.

Today I have a job. Tomorrow I turn 27. It's a whole new adventure.   + 5:48 PM

It's true. I suck. Here's a public apology to everyone I owe email to: I'm sorry! It's just hard to get out from under the avalanche sometimes. (I've been pretty busy lately – more on that soon....)   + 5:11 PM

Believe it or not, in this case, Mr. Cranky is being nice.   + 2:17 PM

Wowee! Pyrapeople redesign city. Check out Jack and Paul!   + 2:14 PM

Happiness is being offline all weekend.   + 12:38 PM


saturday, may, 13

Hey Mike, nice shirt! (Yes, I'm a linkslut when it comes to fray stuff.)   + 11:22 AM


friday, may, 12

Microsoft sucks and sucks some more. Way to score points with the DOJ, boys.   + 6:15 PM

Speaking of the webbys, this was, by far, my favorite acceptance speech of the evening. If I'd won thirty grand to make cool net art with, I'd have wanted to smooch someone, too. Here's the view from where I was.   + 5:54 PM

Congrats, Halcyon! Here was the view from the balcony.   + 1:28 PM


thursday, may, 11

benbrown.com/is/fraybranded   + 12:03 PM

I'll be at the Webbys tonight with a hot date and a bunch of good friends. See if you can spot us!   + 11:59 AM


wednesday, may, 10

Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?   + 11:25 AM

From the did-I-say-that? department: "People of my generation were taught that you're going to grow up and you're going to get a job somewhere, and you're going to go to the same office every day. And then you're going to die."   + 10:57 AM

New in {fray}: "Nothing feels natural when you're in a tin can at 32,000 feet." Story and photos by yours truly.   + 2:45 AM


tuesday, may, 9

Hey, nice shirt!   + 9:02 PM

Being in love is the best fucking thing in the world.   + 3:08 PM

Note to self: remember to read Rebecca every day. Excellent stuff.   + 2:19 PM

From the I-could-have-told-you-that department: I took the what's your true color test and this was the result: "Serene and thoughtful, BLUE is the color of your personality." Dark blue has always been the color that seems the most me to me. [via barbelith]   + 2:17 PM

In seven days I'll be twenty-seven.

There are seven days of the week and seven wonders of the world. There are seven deadly sins and seven dirty words. Some people believe that the universe was created in seven days, while some just believe the number is lucky or even magic.

My friend Ian wrote about how there are seven chakras, seven notes on a scale, seven planets we can see, and how he dreamed of a jive-talkin' dude named Neves, which is seven backwards.

All I know is, in seven days, I'll have survived twenty-seven years on this planet.

So far, so good.   + 12:00 PM


monday, may, 8

Somebody likes their new fray sticker.   + 4:38 PM

Another reason to love San Francisco: the exploratorium. It's basically a museum made by science geeks – a perfect blend of art and science – a museum where you can touch everything. Their current exhibition was amazing (and disturbing), and the rest of the museum just feels like a giant playground. Colored things! Blinky lights! Froggies and bugs! Wheeee!   + 11:58 AM


saturday, may, 6

Last month I started thinking about "about me" pages. Since then, a lot of people have written to me to share theirs, or have put new ones up, and I think they're fascinating. It's interesting to see what people say about themselves. Here we are in this medium where we're talking all the time, but when it comes times to say "this is who I am," it's incredibly difficult.
     Inspired by what I've seen, and spurred on by suggestions I received, I've revised my about page to be a little more informative. If you get here and have no idea what you're looking at, I hope it helps.
     Here, in no particular order, are some of the about pages I've bumped into in the last month. Taken as a whole, I think they paint a very interesting picture of who we are. + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + +   + 3:52 PM


friday, may, 5

I couldn't help but want to make this into a desktop background, but it immediately creeped me out.   + 5:49 PM

I used to play in a lot of bands back in the day. And I learned a lot about the temperments of certain kinds of musicians. Lead guitarists are usually egotistical. Bassists are generally pretty mellow. And drummers, well, let's just say that drummers aren't usually the brightest bulb in the pack. (No offense intended to anyone but Lars.) [via haughey]   + 11:59 AM


thursday, may, 4

One year ago today, I found myself wandering the streets of Amsterdam. Sometimes I still miss it.   + 6:26 PM

Required reading for anyone stupid enough to want to publish a book (like me).   + 5:39 PM

As if we needed more reasons to fear love. Sigh.   + 4:58 PM


wednesday, may, 3

I am the Absolute Ruler of My Little Corner of the World! (Well, me and every other Taurus out there. But still....)   + 5:19 PM

A small point that may have gotten lost in all the wassup parodies: "Racism passing as insider humor is not okay."   + 5:00 PM

Oddly fascinating: personal stories of the first times of famous people. [via feed]

Also fascinating: personal stories of first times by not so famous people.   + 3:53 PM


tuesday, may, 2

Yesterday, in the coffee shop, I walked into one of those great San Francisco moments. A wiry twenty-something guy with glasses and curly hair was excitedly reading out of a book to the guy behind the counter. I ordered my usual white chocolate mocha – medium, whipped cream, to go – as he was going on about how the prefix "ambi" means both "one" and "two." It's the root of "ambivalent" as well as "ambition." The wiry guy reached a crescendo and ran back to his table and his steaming latte. The coffee guy handed me my mocha with a Mona Lisa smile and, for just a split second, I understood how ambivalence and ambition could come from the same place.   + 4:53 PM


monday, may, 1

I decided to change the Kvetch of the Moment to match what I've been complaining about lately.   + 5:34 PM

Mnnn ... strudel.   + 10:48 AM

May. At last.   + 10:47 AM

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