October 27th, 2011


The Gotham of Tomorrow. (108)

The Metropolis of Tomorrow by Hugh Ferriss.

Obscure threefold plan
& sevenfold ascension:
Arts & Sciences.

Buildings like crystals.
Walls of translucent glass.
Sheer glass blocks sheathing a steel grill.
No Gothic branch: no Acanthus leaf: no recollection of the plant world.
A mineral kingdom.
Gleaming stalgmites.
Forms as cold as ice.
Night in the Science Zone.

I'll let Hugh Ferris, above, speak for himself. I've been a big fan of Ferris, using him to illustrate my Oubliette game & even using his work on the cover of my NaNoWriMo novel Watchtower Gothic. What is there to add? It is tricky, because Hugh Ferriss is a dangerous wizard, subtle & quick to anger. He chants out in 1929, & we the magicians hear his utterances now, & forever, amen. The Metropolis of Tomorrow is split into three parts-- the first, where he discusses actual buildings, circa the late Twenties, the second, where he extrapolates from style & zoning laws, & the third, where he just cuts loose & gets utopian about the future. The Science Zone! The Center for Philosophy! Bring it on! I'm quite glad that Dover keeps things like this book alive & in circulation. Ferris ends with a rendition of an inscription he claims he found many years ago: "THE CITY COULD BE MADE IN THE IMAGE OF MAN WHO IS MADE IN THE IMAGE OF" but the last bit of the message is obscured.

cigarette burns

I Watertower Brooklyn. (109)

The One Trick Rip-Off by Paul Pope.

Map of the city.
Gangs: One Tricks, Moolah Muthas.
Batman: Everywhere.

Oh so this is the kind of stuff David Lapham's Stray Bullets is supposed to be like. Or what Brian Azzarello was shooting for with 100 Bullets. Or I guess anybody else with a comic that has "bullets" in the name. I guess they were all writing this stuff in the mid- to late-Nineties. Now, I'm not an unqualified consumer of Pope-- well, his writing, because obviously his art is alway pretty incredible-- & I almost always hate crime fiction, but I thought this was pretty great. It had a few key hooks-- like likable but stupid protagonists-- that I think are missing from a lot of the crime genre. It wasn't relently gloom & feel-bad drama, either-- another hallmark of the criminal thrillers, I find, is the creeping banalatity of awfulnuss. A monotonous dirge of one bad thing after the next. Oh, & then there is the fact that the eponymous "one trick" is pretty fun, & is seamlessly integrated with the narrative without a sloppy exposition about it being shoe horned in. So yeah, I had fun with this; the art is kinetic, the story moves, & it takes a few unexpected turns & twists. Not to mention, the introduction made me think of Massive Attack & Tricky, & so I've been listening to trip-hope all day & feeling somewhat nostalgic for the turn of the millenium.


Mr. F!

After watching Twin Peaks I went into the bedroom & saw a pile of my clothes on the bed. I was confused! I also hadn't had enough room in my closet for the shirt I was hanging back up-- what gives? It turns out, Jenny-mouse did the laundry! A quick load, you know, all smart & before it swelled up to become a blackbody eclipse. She's a nice wife, that one. Then on Wednesday, she cooked up this Moroccan stew, a tajine-- & I helped! Well, I rolled the meatballs & I made the couscous. Then she bailed to go learn about tax stuff, as she slipped out the door, fatbutts & her dog Archie rolled in, followed in short order by fordmadoxfraud & then eventually elladorian. & in fact, even more eventually, Jenny, when she came back. First things first: My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Lilly was curious what all the fuss was about! We watched the first episodes, where Nightmare Moon is established, & then looped around to the Halloween episode with Princess Luna trying to get back to having a normal life. I think I won over Maggie more than Lilly-- but Lilly also didn't really have the amazing time at Sleep No More that I had, so our chemistry is clearly off lately. I knew I should have told her more about it; my theory is that she was overthinking it. The grape & the grain were flowing, & when Jenny came back we tried to watch America's Next Top Model All-Stars, but the DVR just wasn't cooperating. We only ended up seeing the last half-- & the photos were rubbish. I don't blame the models; I blame the photographer, for not behind any good. Also, the uh, "Snookie & Nene" concept was...not very good. It was...not very good, & then they kicked off Bianca! & somebody else, but Bianca! She's way better than...most of the others! I guess she was super annoying in the part of the episode we missed? But still, keeping Sharon & not Bianca-- in her cute short skirt!-- is crazy. Kayla, fine, but her time is past. At least Creepy-Chan is still kicking it. Team Allison. Oh & then! Antonio was at a convention & saw this picture (by Victor Castro Junior & Jeff Balke) of the Joker dressed as Superman, & of course he thought of me, so he sent it! New cubicle art!