Busy, Busy.

•February 20, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I can’t understand the people who say they have nothing to do, I wish they could give me some of their extra time. Over the last few weeks I’ve done the following, none of which is directly related to my actual job.

Read most of The Secret Life of Houdini. What a great book; William Kalush and Larry Sloman have done some seriously good research and tell a very entertaining story of Houdini’s life. It’s hard to get scope of his fame but he really was bigger than Elvis. I can’t believe I didn’t know he jumped off the Queens Bridge here in Melbourne and accidentally unearthed a dead body. That’s something you think you’d be told about.

Started working through Darwin Ortiz’s Annotated Erdnase. I’m taking this one slowly and really trying to get a hold of the moves, the notes are fantastic and hold great insight. I need to get a copy of Revelations.

Finished reading Designing Miracles which for such a short book really blew my mind. I couldn’t read more than a chapter without putting it down and taking the information in. It has really changed my approach to my magic.

Reworked my Ambitious Card routine taking some of the concepts in Designing Miracles onboard. I’ll be trying it out for the first time in a few weeks with some walk-around at Magic Mondays.

Got serious about learning the Harmonica. I’ve found with the office door closed at night I can practice without waking my son. I can almost play both the guitar and harp parts to Heart of Gold at the same time; now if I could only sing well.

During the heat wave I finally had the inspiration to write my first song. It needs work but I’m happy I’ve started.

I finally bought new strings for my Ukulele which has sat neglected for a month or two. Now I’m playing more I’ve discovered that while a Flying V Uke is a cool idea in theory the pointy bits really stick in your arm after a while.

I’ve been getting more web design work which is nice. Dean’s site came out really well and he’s getting a lot of comments (and more importantly, work) from it. I helped Kamal with a quick temporary page for the ASM and I might be doing another magic related one soon. If I can do something to give magic in general a better design sense I’ll have achieved something, some is good but there’s more than the fair share of terrible stuff around

Speaking of Dean, I’m going to be working on a promo video for him shortly. We’ve got some TV performance clips now and just need to shoot one more thing. I think it’s going to come out well.

So far this year has been great for finding great music. Danielle ate the Sandwich was a good find from my wife, I bought both CD’s and have been playing them to death. It’s good to hear a song about Darwin. Found out that Brendan from work is in the band Downhills Home so I’ll be heading out to see them live soon, their album reminds me very much of the Byrds. Derek Trucks has a new album out and I found out Gov’t Mule are back in the studio. Finally, after getting my ticket to Zappa Plays Zappa, I got around to cleaning up all the tags/album art on my Frank Zappa albums.

Can somebody spare some time?

I remember this place.

•February 10, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I was positive this blog was going to be kept busy. Oh well, I can only try harder

Pining for the Amazon

•October 7, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I love Amazon. Being able to choose a few books not readily available here in Australia and have them sitting on my desk no more than a week later is the way commerce should work. Seeing the leaked shots of the Kindle 2 last week renewed my hope for an expansion of the Amazon services to these shores.

In the meantime, stuck tethered to the trusty arm of my local DHL man, I’m waiting on “That Reminds Me: Finding the Funny in a Serious World” by Michael Close and the soon to be released “Death from the Skies!” by Phil Plait. My to read pile is slowly growing.

Maybe it’s time for a little Feynman in my next shipment.

For $15 trillion we could build a planet.

•September 30, 2008 • Leave a Comment

I’ve come to the conclusion I don’t know if the planet is warming or cooling (or even if we’re causing it or not). There are too many really smart people on both sides of the argument and every chart or graph has an evil twin who contradicts it.

What I do know is it’s going to cost a lot of money to make us feel better about it.

Maybe we need more people who’ll admit they don’t know.

Above the law

•September 24, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Catholic Church operated hospitals are up in arms over a legislative Bill that will require a Catholic Doctor or Nurse to refer patients seeking an abortion to another medical professional who does not object to the procedure. 

I’m with them 100%, no way should they be forced by the Government to go against the very fabric of their beliefs. Even as an Atheist I’ll stand beside them and fight for their right to freedom of speech and thought. Stand up and defend this blatant attack on your core beliefs. What gives the lawmakers the right to dictate to you your actions, I mean it’s not like you receive Government money to help run your hospitals.

I’m sorry… you do?

Sorry guy’s, you’re on your own.

Album art now on a postage stamp

•September 22, 2008 • Leave a Comment

Instead of developing a bulletproof distribution system, giving their consumers a huge catalogue of high quality DRM free music to do with what they please, SanDisk has released yet another “SlotMusic”, yet another physical audio format.

Just when I thought we’d jumped straight from CD to digital files, apparently someone decided I’d prefer to carry around a pocketful of proprietary SD cards. 

Remember when the UMD was going to save us all from the burden of conveniently being able to rip our own music?

I predict these will have a very short life.

E=RRR

•September 16, 2008 • Leave a Comment

If you live in Melbourne you’ll know of the radio station Triple R. If you don’t, I can say without hesitation you’re missing out on something special. This community funded radio station has supplied much of the soundtrack of my life. The presenters have always brought forth a zeal that can only come from doing what they love.

This is no more apparent than from the Einstein a Go Go team. My time at school was consumed with the arts, science was a subject quickly forgotten about when I finally had the choice. Looking back, it’s a decision I regret a little every time I tune into this little science show on a Sunday morning. If I had teachers with one ounce (should really be gram in this metric part of the world) of the enthusiasm for science these presenters exude every show I’d be wearing a white coat right now. I’m really happy there is a place for science based, free thinking entertainment in this age of consumer driven programming.

For those not lucky enough to live in Melbourne you can subscribe to the EAGG podcast and find out why I have a secret crush for Dr Andi. And if this doesn’t make you want to check it out they’re also having an exhibition of different copies of Charles Darwin’s ‘On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection’. How fucking cool is that!