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August 14, 2007

Ayn Marie Dimaya's Bitter Grace


Somewhere on our blue planet it is 4:01 a.m. Thursday, August 15.

Just 44 minutes ago in that place — to be precise, at 3:17 a.m. — Ayn Marie Dimaya, in her blog Bitter Grace, wrote the following:

    Don’t Just Do Something…Sit There!*

    Everyone (well, at least my friends and the readers of this blog) knows how useless I’ve been feeling lately because I don’t have a fulltime job and I spend most of my time blogging, or watching TV shows and films, or reading. And I’ve been feeling guilty, because I don’t feel like I’m part of society, the way I should be. After all, it’s been told to us over and over again since childhood that we should study so that we finish school, finish school so that we find work, find work so that we can support ourselves and eventually support our family.

    A couple of days ago, while passing time in Fully Booked Gateway, I stumbled across a book-shaped magazine called the idler (Issue 35, “War on Work”). Quite simply, it’s a magazine devoted to changing our perceptions of idling. They argue that the ideal ambition-driven work ethic is killing people and that the capitalist/consumer-driven lifestyle will eventually kill our world. They encourage people to stop overworking and instead embrace a lifestyle that is better for their souls.

    The first important step to becoming an idler: stop wanting. As quoted in the article “If they got what you want, then they got you.” So if you’ve stopped wanting what they’ve got, you’re free to life the way you want. You can stop working hard, even quit your job. Find a part time job that will allow you to do the things you like to do–like read, or watch tv and films, or cook, or sleep. And then another important step is to stop feeling guilty that your not working hard because you, in fact, deserve to do nothing.

    It reminds me of Sabrina’s father (in the film "Sabrina") who chooses to become a chauffeur so that he’ll have more time to read. Of course, the point of being idle is not to become lazy but to stop being a slave to wage (aka, money-the-root-of-all-evil.) Being idle shouldn’t mean we stop creating.


Well put.

More about Ms. Dimaya: "This is the personal blog of Ayn Marie Dimaya who is sometimes a film scorer, sometimes a writer, sometimes a student, sometimes a teacher, but most of the time someone who stares at the TV/ceiling/pages of a book in between times of unconsciousness, aka sleep. The contents of this blog vary from: a) rants, b) raves, c) various nonsense like results of tests from blogthings, or d) not-so-nonsense stuff like poems, songs, or film reviews."

Full disclosure: I do not know Ayn Marie Dimaya. I have never met, emailed nor spoken with her. I only learned of her existence via a Technorati link I happened on a few minutes ago.

The fifth of seven links following her above-republished post happens to be to a bookofjoe entry of mine dated July 10, 2005 entitled "In praise of doing nothing," no doubt the beginning of the long and winding road that led me to her site.

August 14, 2007 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Down Low Gardening Kneeler with Drink Holder


God forbid anyone anywhere anytime should be without their bottle of water.

From the website:

    Gardener's Comfort Kneeler Seat

    Low-down gardening is more comfortable when you can sit and kneel at the same time.

    Unlike other kneelers on the market, this one supports your derriere as you kneel on the big, thick kneeler pads.

    Angled seat lets you sit back and rest without sitting on your ankles.

    Molded-in cup holder holds a cooling drink nearby.

    Double-wall molded construction — just hose clean.

    29" x 22" x 10.75" tall.


$34.99 (sorry — bottled water not included).

August 14, 2007 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'The Last Novel' — by David Markson


Markson is a novelist like no other.

How is it, then, that I only heard of him a month ago when I read a review of his latest book (above)?

Wake up, joe, and smell the coffee already.


You could do a lot worse with your $10.20 (at Amazon).

I'm just saying, is all.

A 1989 interview with Markson is here.

Full disclosure: Both the Schnabel and Schopenhauer quotations featured here the past two days are from "The Last Novel."

August 14, 2007 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Sneaker Tube — End washing machine anxiety


Who doesn't hesitate just a smidge before throwing in their disgusting running or workout shoes?

Ever since the clever Sneaker Dryer appeared here on January 10, 2006, my crack research team has been searching, until today without success, for a washing machine counterpart.

Nice work, team.

From the website:

    Sneaker Wash Tube

    Easily clean your sneakers in the washing machine!

    Zipped in this tube, your sneakers aren't left to tumble around in the washer and wrap around the agitator or snag other clothes.

    Yet the mesh fabric lets water circulate through so they still get the cleaning power they need while keeping shoes separate.

    Two loops make it easy to hang from a rod or clothes line for air drying.

    14" long x 9" dia.— big enough for just about any size shoes!

    Non-rust plastic zipper.

    Folds to store.


August 14, 2007 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

MorphWorld: Johnny Depp into Gustave Courbet


The French painter's remarkable self-portrait (below),


dated 1843-1845, even features clothes like those worn by the head Pirate of the Caribbean (top).

August 14, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Solar Powered Floating Digital Pool Thermometer


Think outside the pool space: fun in the bathtub or at the beach, wherever water happens.

From the website:

    Floating Digital Thermometer

    Displays your pool's water temperature, updated every 10 seconds.

    Powered by the sun (no batteries needed) to display the temperature of water 5" beneath the surface.

    Large, easy-to-read digits can be set to Celsius or Fahrenheit and record
    maximum and minimum temperatures between resets.

    Anchor cord included — or let it free float.

    3" diameter, 5-1/4" long overall.

    Auto shut-off after one hour.


Waterproof — the way it should be.

But then — it would be, wouldn't it?

Never mind.


August 14, 2007 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'Reading is thinking with someone else's brain' — Schopenhauer


The definition above comes the closest yet to helping me understand why, ever since I was a boy, reading has been — by far — my single most favorite thing to do.

And it's legal.

How can something so wonderful not be forbidden?

It flies in the face of everything contributing to the crushing of the individual, which today masquerades as modernity.

I am reminded of Jeanette Winterson's remark about her mother's unhappiness at her constant, compulsive reading, to wit: "The trouble with books is that you can't tell by looking what's inside them."


August 14, 2007 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Trailer Hitch Hammock Chair


From the website:

    Trailer Hitch Hanging Sport Chair

    Turn your trailer hitch into two chairs with hammock-like comfort!

    In just ten minutes you’ll be able to experience the comfort of this chair — attaching it to your hitch is that easy.

    And while getting in and out is easy, once you’ve experienced the comfort, you won’t want to give it up!

    Select the hitch stand, then choose a solid color chair or one sporting your favorite college logo.



The hitch stand costs $115; solid color chairs (Red, Purple, Black, Tan, Blue or Green) are $79.95; College Logo chairs (22 schools


to choose from) are $99.95 — all here.

August 14, 2007 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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