Truthful speaking would be a simple way to tell the truth, if the truth were simple and could be told.

28 February 2008

A Nabokovian Debackle

Thus far, I've only read three novels by Vladimir Nabokov. One was a piece of absolute genius (Pale Fire), one was pretty good (Lolita) and one I didn't care for as much (Pnin). I'm still going to get through Ada one of these days -- in all likelihood sometime in the next coming year (yet I did read three Pynchon books within months of each other and it's been about a year since I finished Against the Day and have finally started pursuing Mason & Dixon). I do like Nabokov, though sometimes it's difficult to remember that you have to absorb his novels slowly, like you would for a Pynchon or a John Crowley (whose better than any of them), because they're about 300 pages or so for the most part and you get that momentum of flipping through the pages. Anyway: he's worth checking out.

Which brings up this point: apparently before he died, oh so many years ago, he was working on another novel and had gotten someway into the first draft-- which he wrote on lined index cards, a craft he gave to John Shade -- when he kicked the bucket. He instructed his son not to publish the novel, to burn it; it was far from finished, written out on only 50 index cards, which apparently makes up about 30 manuscript pages, and I suppose he didn't think it was strong enough to carry the Nabokov label. As it turns out, his son did not burn the draft but he didn't publish it either, keeping those notebook cards under safe keeping someplace or another. Now he's debating about whether or not it's time to allow us, the reading masses, to see the novel.

Slate recently ran a couple pieces concerning the piece, which you should read right now (this isn't a non-profit radio station; the FCC isn't watching me, I can call to action as much as I want):

The Last Work of Vladimir Nabokov Part I

The Last Work of Vladimir Nabokov Part II

Both links provide plenty of other links to other parts of the site, of other opinions, and whatnot, that could very well keep you glued here for hours. They are worth checking out, as well.

The novel itself does sound interesting, according to these articles, and I bet there are plenty of people out there who would jump at the chance of reading it, as unfinished, incomplete, or unputtogether (I made that last one up) it is. The whole story surronding the debackle is ripe for a story of its own, and Rosenbaum numerous times compares it to Hamlet. Which, if you read the article, you'll find it makes more sense.

I read both Stoppard and Banville's responses to the first article and they both make interesting points. Till when do we respect the wishes of the artist about his work? When an artist releases his or her piece, it's out of their hands, up for interpretation from anybody despite what the artist initially intends. Sure, their ideas could influence how people think of their work, but once it's gone, it's gone. So, doesn't it make sense that an artist, of any medium, really, should have enough time to perfect it to the best of their ability before it's released?

Then again, many of us readers are hard-core readers, and often times when you find someone you like, you want to read everything they've written, no matter how long it takes (I only have one more Gabriel Garcia Marquez book to read before getting through his completed works). And even the lesser work of a great writer is still better than the best work of an average or mediocre one.

On top of that, without people who have been instructed to destroy manuscripts before they were released we wouldn't have most of Franz Kafka's works, This Side of Paradise, or works by Truman Capote, Mark Twain, Balzac, and Marlowe. Yet that poses another problem: the responsibilty of it all. Though Frank Herbert's dead, there've been a great deal of Dune books based off the notes he left, and the same thing's going for that Wheel of Time serires. Both of which are absolutley dreadful and I wouldn't cry if they were lost in the labyrinth of time. Then you have Tolkien's son. The publication of The Silmarillion was understandable but the man pretty much whored out all of his father's works. We keep getting them and they're all terrible. I mean, even if I'm not as big a fan of Lord of the Rings as I used to be (great setting; not-so-great characters), don't you think there needs to be some level of respect?

As for this issue: I'm not going to put my allegiance to one group or another just yet (I mean, this isn't Barak Obama/Hilary Clinton decisions; this is far more important). I will say that I will be really disappointed if those 30 cards meet the flames -- and I'll get over it -- but if the book comes out, I'll definitley read it.

27 February 2008

Another Cloud Cult Song

Based off these two songs I've gotten, the new album is going to be great.

22 February 2008

New Cloud Cult Song!

Imagine coming home from classes, eating peanut butter and jelly sandwhiches before going off to work on the radio, and finding a new CLOUD CULT song! It makes for one splendid Friday midday.

21 February 2008


I was talking about it the other day to a friend: I'm really private when it comes to music. Sure, I'll share it with anyone, but I don't listen to it with groups of people. I like having it for myself, experiencing it by myself; and somehow, sitting in a room listening to a music with a group of people just doesn't appeal to me. Nor does playing video games or watching me. I'm a very solitary person I suppose. What makes the whole music thing more hilarious is that I'm a DJ. Though that's the whole sharing thing again. I'm playing the music, but not actually listening to it with anybody, trapped in the basement of the LSC, all alone with that soundboard.


Also weird: I'm writing my first story ever in first person. I usually hate using it, it feels a cheap way to make you associate with the character and I'm all about keeping psychic distance, but right now it's a really interesting experience. Testing it out, seeing what I can do with it. Which is what I use short stories for: experimenting with literary methods (that almost sounds sexual -- and you know what? it is). I can go back to anyone of the short stories I've written, as craptastic as they may be, and tell you what I was trying to do. I'd list them now, but without having read them, it wouldn't make much sense would it?

20 February 2008

To the Church of the Red Cave

Something about this song almost makes me cry. I can't explain it.

15 February 2008


So: in the new Indiana Jones trailer, there's a bit that looks a little computer-touched, if you know what I mean. It's maybe a minute in, right after Dr. Jones is first officialy introduced -- the thing people on the IMDB boards are calling Ray Winstones's CGI pants extravaganze. What happened, to explain it all, is that the MPAA told Paramount and Spielberg that having guns that close in the frame wasn't appropriate for all audiences, never mind the shootouts, car crashes, punches, gun cockings, explosions, and imitiable dangerous actions that follow afterwards. In the international version the weapons are intact and also the American flag has been 86ed.


Why are the MPAA still around? What's it going to take to bring them down? Come on, filmmakers, someone out there has to have the power of Radiohead and say "Screw you" to the bigwigs. The MPAA itself, which treats us as mentally challenged children -- us! usually intelligent, grounded people -- doesn't seem like it should be that difficult to bring down; already it's too loose in its construction, barely holding together any respect or acknowledgement anymore. You don't need This Film is Not Yet Rated to tell you that (though it is interesting).

Funny how something created to protect artists from censorship became the biggest black-blocker there ever could be . . . oh wait, no it isn't. It was inevitable.

14 February 2008

Oh My God, oh My God, oh My GOD!

Screw Batman and Speed Racer and Harry Potter and Hellboy and pretty much anything else that's coming out this year. You wanna know why? That's right: it's the latest installment of Indiana Jones!

Now you know what? Raiders of the Lost Ark may be my favorite movie. I don't think it's one of the greatest movies of all time, or that it should be held in regards with others: it is the greatest. That movie has everything that movies were invented for: fun, adventure, hilarity, thought-provoking questions, which can get bundled down, as well as a hero who is just plain lucky and unlike the lower level French professor who is just one lesson ahead of the students, you're right in line with this course of thinking. It's brilliant filmmaking and I've watched that movie so many times...but still get all invested into the story.

So the trailer for the new installment was released today: I cannot wait to see it. And you shouldn't either.

10 February 2008

Found It!

It's the version of "Brazil" featured in the film of the same title. Can't tell you how long I've been looking for this.

08 February 2008

Things You can Apparently do with Guitar Hero II

So someone manipulated Guitar Hero to play Buddy Rich's "Channel One Suite," which may be my favorite jazz song of all time. I remember I played it when in my high school jazz band and it probably stands as the most difficult song I've ever attempted. The first time I got through it completley, with the least amount of screwing up, was probably one of the best days of my entire musical career. There's about seventeen different time changes and tempo variations, and once you nab down the sequence of notes (I'm speaking of the real ones here) you have to then keep the rhythms going, which, as I mentioned, tend to fluxuate at their own whim. Once played together it sounds amazing, spectacular, and just plain ole awesome. Our group only did it once live and it was all right -- there were better verions in rehearsal -- because most people didn't care about the music, which was sad. I worked on that song so much I still have a lot of it memorized.

However, I still think it's more impressive if you can play the song for real, but this is fun to watch, though he does cut out the drum solo. What's with that?

Incidentally, does anyone know how to make YouTube not suck with Blogger? I can't post both videos. Lame. Anyway, scroll down to see both videos.

Guitar Hero- Channel One Suite part 1

Guitar Hero- Channel One Suite part 2

05 February 2008

I've Finished

Finished the first draft of my novella, "The Fabulous Destiny of Theo Urata". Here's a preview of what it looks like right now:

There's 35 pages written like that. Soon enought it'll all be typewritten and everything.