« October 18, 2009 | Main | October 20, 2009 »

October 19, 2009

Broken Arrow

A blast from the past (1996) action thriller directed by John Woo in his inimitable fashion.

John Travolta plays a B-2 Stealth Bomber pilot who's gone over to the dark side with classic Travoltian "Get Shorty" swagger and "ain't it cool?" attitude while good guy Christian Slater is his unknowing co-pilot.

Samantha  Mathis is great as a park ranger who gets caught up in the action.

Howie Long and a number of very recognizable character actors sweeten the pot.

Lots of amusing and sly gags and wordplay thrown in to leaven the series of elegantly choreographed explosions, gun battles, fights and collisions.

I thought it was great.

FunFact: A "Broken Arrow" refers to an accidental event that involves nuclear weapons, warheads or components, but which does not create the risk of nuclear war."

You could look it up.

As one of the characters in the movie, hearing the term for the first time, remarked, "It's troubling that it happens often enough that there's a name for it."

Good point.

October 19, 2009 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Grip & Tip Hands-Free Bottle Holder


What took so long?

From the website:


Grip & Tip Holder

Hands-free Grip & Tip keeps small bottles steady.

Prevent spills and keep both hands free as you paint your nails, detail model cars or enjoy other crafts.

Hinged design tilts the bottle to better reach every last drop.

Also great for hands-free cellphone use.

7.75" x 6.5" x 1.5".



Pink, Purple, Lime Green, White, Black or Gray.


October 19, 2009 at 03:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

'The Book That Contains All Books'


Stephen Marche's superb essay in this past weekend's Wall Street Journal, "The Book That Contains All Books," offered a novel perspective on the rise of the electronic book, comparing its importance to what he considers the two major historical inflection points in reading: first, the change from scrolls to bound books and second, the advent of the printing press.

Excerpts follow.


On Monday, the Kindle 2 will become the first e-reader available globally. The only other events as important to the history of the book are the birth of print and the shift from the scroll to bound pages. The e-reader, now widely available, will likely change our thinking and our being as profoundly as the two previous pre-digital manifestations of text.

Most literate people are familiar with at least some of the consequences of the print revolution of the 15th century, but far fewer are as aware of the much more profound change that occurred when rolls were replaced by codices—pages bound between covers—in the late Roman period. Think of the scattered, tattered remainders of the Dead Sea Scrolls—each text is isolated and vulnerable. Codices were originally mini-libraries, much more useful and easy than storing masses of loose individual texts.

The development of the codex was a shift from thinking of literature as a unique object, like a painting, to seeing it as an institutional object. Conversely, as the codex came to dominate as a means of intellectual transmission, the scroll began to take on the status of a holy object, which is why synagogues keep the Torah in scrolls.

The introduction of the printing press brought a similarly enormous change to the nature of reading.

My paper library consists of 2,000 volumes, making it both much too big and much too small. I consider a working library to have about 5,000 volumes, but a mere 2,000 has been sufficient to be one of the most continuous problems of my life. Moving it around is a nightmare. A hundred boxes of books is a terrible burden in the 21st century. Yet I know that I will never get rid of them. I'm too attached now. Just as the ancients respected the scroll more after the development of the book, just as the hand-written manuscript became sacred after the invention of print, the printed book is now beginning to glow with its own obsolescence.

But I am immensely excited for the new phase of the book.... In literary terms it's a transbook, by which I mean that it is the book which can contain all books. Why are so many writers so afraid of this staggeringly wonderful possibility? A book is a singular object that can contain many voices, but the transbook has the potential to be a singular object containing all voices. It is not just another kind of media; it is the dream of ultimate text.

We are still in early days, but it is obvious where the transbook is headed: It will eventually provide access to all text that is non-copyright, and to the purchase of every book in or out of "print."

... It's about what the book wants to be. And the book wants to be itself and everything. It wants to be a vast abridgment of the universe that you can hold in your hand. It wants to be the transbook.




The Dead Sea Scrolls.

October 19, 2009 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Flashing Bulb Pen


From the website:


Flashing Bulb Pen

Just bounce, bump or tap our pen’s rubber bulb on any hard surface and it lights and flashes, bringing on the smiles.

This brilliant stocking stuffer includes cap and batteries for instant fun.

Assorted color pens with blue ink (we’ll choose for you).

8"L x 1"W.


Apiece, $2.99.

October 19, 2009 at 01:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

'The Red Book' — by Carl Jung


Pictured above is a tempera painting by Carl Jung from "The Red Book," which Jung worked on from 1914 to 1930 and characterized as his "confrontation with the unconscious."

An October 8, 2009 article from The Economist about the book follows.


Confronting the unconscious

The publication of a new work by Carl Jung, the Swiss psychiatrist and psychologist who died in 1961, is an exciting event. “The Red Book”, which duplicates Jung’s original manuscript, is both enormous and expensive. Even so, its first printing sold out before publication. Apart from its intrinsic interest, it is a magnificent work of art (the original is on show at the Rubin Museum in New York). Written in German Gothic script, with an English translation, it is illustrated with tempera paintings by Jung which reveal him to be a gifted, if sometimes frightening, artist (see left).

Jung spent from 1914 to 1930 working on the book, which he felt had emerged from his “confrontation with the unconscious”. There is no final text, only an unfinished manuscript corpus. Yet it enables the reader to gain a window into the genesis of Jung’s psychology in a way that none of his published works has done. He develops his theory of “individuation”: that is, how personality develops over time and how an individual is split between the “I” (conscious existence) and the “self” (total personality including the unconscious mind). Jung came to believe that he had lost touch with his “soul”, that he had sacrificed it to science. “The Red Book” shows, in literary and symbolic form, his own process of individuation.

Its starting point is Jung’s vision of apocalypse engulfing Europe. These “waking fantasies” led him to think that he might be psychologically disturbed and he decided to get at the root of what was happening to him through self-investigation. In the process Jung encounters several figures from the unconscious realm of his mind. One of the most important is Philemon, representing a sort of inner guru or wise old man, whom Jung came to regard as the author of the more prophetic parts of “The Red Book”. Philemon and the other figures in the book are seen as components of a collective unconscious, the deep level of the mind that is common to all humanity: a kind of psychological DNA.

Jung was ambivalent about publishing "The Red Book" in his lifetime, perhaps because of concerns about what it would do to his medical and scientific reputation. But in 2000, writes his grandson, Ulrich Hoerni, the family decided that it should be released to the public. Sonu Shamdasani, a noted Jung scholar, was chosen as editor, the author of a lengthy introduction and, along with two others, the translator.

The work can be viewed as Jung’s spiritual autobiography. It is a search to understand a range of questions: the various components of his own personality; the structure of human personality in general; the relation of the individual to society; the psychological and historical effects of Christianity and much else. Mr Shamdasani claims that eventually all Jung’s work will be understood on the basis of this book and that previous writing about him will have to be revised. He may be right.




another painting from "The Red Book."

October 19, 2009 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

SolaFeet Foot Tanner — 'Golfers, rid yourself of those ugly sock tan lines'


From the website:


SolaFeet Foot Tanner

If you always feel like people are gawking at your white feet and the unsightly tan lines around your ankles when you wear sandals or pumps, then you need the Solafeet foot tanner.

Those tan lines can be gone in 5 to 10 days with just fifteen minutes use daily.

Then you can go from the golf course to the clubhouse in confidence.

The SolaFeet is ideal for flip-flop wearers, tennis players and joggers.

It meets or exceeds all FDA standards, and cleans easily with a mild detergent and non-abrasive cloth.




[via The Daily Dairy and Random Good Stuff]

October 19, 2009 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Hoping Motorola's upcoming Droid phone is half as good as its new commercial

Take that, Apple!

October 19, 2009 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Toilet Paper Holder with Integrated Puzzle Lock


From the website:


Toilet Paper Holder with Integrated Puzzle Lock

Searching for the perfect prank?

Install this wooden case over a standard toilet paper roll and leave one sheet hanging to get the fun started.

To access the rest of the roll, the puzzle must be solved.

Set-up instructions and solution included.

Makes a unique and amusing party gift.

4-3/4"W x 4-1/4"Ø.



$16.98 (toilet paper not included — BYO).

October 19, 2009 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

« October 18, 2009 | Main | October 20, 2009 »