Thursday, June 29, 2006

What's in the mix

This morning I was enthralled to find out about what looks to be really good cross-platform DJing software Mixxx , and what looks to be a really good FLStudios alternative for linux, LMMS. I'm surprised that I haven't come across these applications yet, as I've been doing research on Linux audio for a while now. On the this Free Culture Carleton blog post I expressed interest in learning more about sound production; I feel like I already have so many things on my plate already, but I'm a juggler. I will learn to mix activities ... like they were audio streams !

Today's album reccommendation

Today I'd like to feature a gem of an album under a Creative Commons license available on :

Revolution Void - Increase the Dosage

If you like breakbeats, loungyness, jazzy sax and organ interludes, dope-arsed scratching, and psychedelic synths, check it out. Arguably one of my favourite full length CC albums.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Banana Brass Monkey

Today when I was juggling at the tech wall ...uhhh... for those who've never been to the tech wall this flickr photo may help. Anyway, I was juggling over at the left by that blue head and some guy poped out over ther overhang where the community garden lies and he started being friendly with me. To be honest, I didn't really reflect his friendliness all that much; I answered his questions in a polite but standofish manner. I guess I was just more into practicing juggling than casual chat with some stranger that I percieved to possibly be one of the fractured souls that usually hangs out in the area to abuse alcohol and other drugs (though he didn't seem intoxicated).

Sometimes I hang around with people that others may consider low-lifes or bums or addicts or what-have-you. I often find that these people did not have the nurturing environment that I have had throughout my life. Drug abuse (includeing alcohol) was often in the family or social circles. Many of them have been repeatedly abused by their parents and/or partners and/or peers. Many of them abuse themselves and the people around them physically, mentally, spiritually. But many of them have hearts too. And when I spend time with these people, I work to look through all the ugliness and see that goodness in them and draw it out. At the same time, I don't put up with their B.S., and I'm not afraid to call them on it. Hanging out with them can really be a drag, a tap to my energy I feel, and sometimes I just can't handle it. I'm just too sensitive to others sometimes. Or, I sometimes feel it's a poor investment of energy to spend time with these people, and that I should instead invest energy into my interests.

I diverge but now I reconviene. It turns out that those impressions somewhat subconcious were a false. I found out this when the guy out of the blue offered me some unopened 40 oz of beer; he didn't drink, and someone hanging out there had left him it. I jumped up the perpendicular wall (barely showing on the right hand side of the picture) to grab it. I found out he was camping there because he moved to Ottawa with the expectation/promise of being able to stay somewhere here, but that fell through, so the guy and what looked to be his female partner (who stayed back from our conversation) started camping out there. I found out that Rosemary Taylor who runs the Nanny Goat Hill Community Garden up there gave them permission to stay there after she discovered them there; big props to her on that one. I know Rosemary because I started volunteering at the garden in the spring to work on the common areas of the garden. I just remembered that there was an article comming out in the Citizen about the garden, and found it here for the first time now as I blog. Anyway, our dialog became much friendlier after the man made an offering to me, and introduced his situation; I was glad to to find that he persisted in his friendly engagement despite the somewhat cold responses I gave him initially.

The beer he gave me was a 40 oz. of Carling Black Label 8.0% beer. I hadn't drank something this nasty since my high-schoool days as far as I can remember, but I was really in the mood for a cold beer. But the beer was warm, and I was supposed to meet with someone in the evening, so I didn't have time to let it cool down in the freezer. So I thought, "Brass Monkey on ice", which I hadn't ever mixed myself, but some people shared it with me once and I thought it was alright. For those of you who don't know, a Brass Monkey can be a drink with a strong 40 beer or malt liquor with orange juice added, although the wikipedia definition is a bit fuzzier. Anyway, I went out an got a carton of orange juice, threw some ice in a glass, poured beer in, and topped it up with about 1/8th of a glass of orange juice. I found it to be quite delicious; I was surprised at how well that bit of orange juice did at disguising the taste of the nasty beer. Unfortunately the first one gave me an acidic stomach (possibly due to a dischordance with the remaining food in my belly), so instead of stopping the drinking (I was out for a bit of a beer buzz after I found out my plans had fallen though) I decided to search the internet for foods that were basic, or that had antacid properties. I found bananas to be one, and I had some frozen bananas so I placed some of these "fruit cubes" on top of the ice in the next drink. So I was sitting here a while ago sipping away at my "Banana Brass Monkey" and thinking "I should blog this", and so here I am, and here I go. Later.

Under the lense

This morning I met with Steve Sharlow to talk about doing some artistic modeling for him. He showed me some of his work, which I really appreciated. We chatted about the intelllectual property rights of the photos and the contract between model and photographer. Basically, Steve would have the copyright for the photos, and I wanted to be assured that photos wouldn't be used in ways other than artistic display and selling without my consent. I was given this assurance, which will take the form of a written contract. A friend who knows this man better than I do told me he was a trustworthy man, and after meeting him I felt assured. If anyone is interested in doing some modeling, let me know. He's looking for "normal people" in the age range 22-65 for the purposes of artistic nude photos.

Modeling pays well, and it's pretty easy work, but even more appealing than that, this is work that is supporting an artist. My interest in doing artistic modeling started in St. Johns. One of the people I was living with out there was doing some modeling for an arts school, which piqued my interest. One day I answered the phone and it was the arts school in desperate need of a model at the last minute, but the model in the house wasn't around, so I offered to fill in for her and recieved acceptance. The job consisted of me in a bathing suit posing in different positions for different lengths of time for people who were sketching with pencil. After it was done, I managed to get photocopies of some of the sketches, which was kind of a neat memento.

I am willing to go to the arts schools in Ottawa and apply as a model, but first I need a portfolio. I thought this was just a collection of photos of myself, but as I found out this morning, it's a little more than just that. There are certain things that they are looking for, and this is something Steve knows lots about. He offered to help me put together a portfolio (which would normally cost a lot of money) pretty much for free, and in return I'm going to help him find some models. I love growning mutually beneficial relationships.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006


I've just returned from a gathering called In:tent . I had some mind-blowning experiences there. Great people. Great music. Great workshops. Great food from the Kind Kitchen. Great fire dancers. Great natural camping site. Next gathering I attend I intend to come with more things to share. A staff spinning workshop, info about Free Culture, better costumage, goods to share and trade. I will be attending the Evolve festival in Nova Scotia in August. A bunch of friends are going to Eclipse trance festival. So much going on ...

Friday, June 09, 2006

Flash in the pan

I know this blog badly needs updating, yet I don't have time to give a decent update of everything that's been going on since last month, so I thought I'd just give a quick flash. I recently got a job at the Wild Oat. I've been volunteering/attending the National Community Radio Conference, and working on some personal projects. More details to come...