Category Archives: Reflections from elsewhere

Material from elsewhere on the internet presented on the Running Eye Blog for its remarkable qualities.

On Niche Annoyances and Traffic Circle Fountains

Fountain Circle by Seth Lemmons. CC 2.0 License.

What’s the Big Deal? (Fountain Circle by Seth Lemmons. CC 2.0 License)

My favourite crossword blogger, Rex Parker, recently went on a rant about how crossword puzzles depicted in film and television are often completely spurious. Fictitious grids are written into scripts and rarely respect the rules of crossword or clue construction. As result, something that escapes the notice of the vast majority of observers incites disdain and outrage from the devoted few who care about such things.

I find these sort of niche annoyances fascinating because they are a window onto foreign worlds of passion and knowledge. This is why I was so tickled when my friend, the water artist Pierre Luu, went on a tirade against the placement of fountains in traffic circles. Personally, I’d liked to see water spouting about as I drove past. What could be the problem? Continue reading

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Ain’t No Way To Love Me

Jason Bogdaneris’ moody movie of Hannah Marcus’ shadowy song, Ain’t No Way To Love Me

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Dante’s Virgil

written by Crow Jane

So Virgil and Justin Bieber walk into a bar. Virgil says Give us a couple of lagers. Bartender gives ’em some, there’s a monkey sitting at the end of the bar. Virgil says What’s that damn monkey doing at the end of the bar? Barkeep says Don’t say anything bad about that monkey. He’s my friend. Virge says Oh.

Then the bartender says Wanna see something cool? Virgil looks at Justin Bieber, they say Yes. Bartender walks down to the end of the bar, punches the monkey in the face, monkey jumps off his barstool and gives the barkeeper a blowjob.

Bartender comes back, says to Justin Bieber, You wanna try it? Bieber says Sure! Just don’t hit me so hard.

Crow Jane is an anonymous international all-girl poetry collective. We write and translate all our work together, but keep liaisons with The Secret Boat and Truck Club in New Orleans. Their watchword is “We are not just a boat and truck club, we are a SECRET boat and truck club!” Crow Jane has been published in Aufgabe, Boog City and Shampoo Poetry in the U.S. Adopting the sobriquet Societé Anonyme, proxies appeared for us live on stage at the Bridport Poetry Festival in Dorset, England.
For further Kilometer Zero Running Eye Blog bar jokes, click here.
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Bacteria—Genome—Baby Boy

The image (see image right) shows a colony of Bacillus subtilis. Each of the little grains is one bacterium, with the striae of colour denoting the various lineages present, which express different fluorescent proteins.

Initially the scientists had them all jumbled up in the middle of the petri dish, but as they grew and replicated, the bacteria organised themselves into the pattern you see. The formation is both reproducible and describable mathematically. More provocative however is that Continue reading

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Invisible Hand

Announcement: Invisible Hand is an exhibition and residency by Tim Vincent-Smith featuring harmonographic drawing machines, dismantled pianos, live music and the world premiere of Goat Song, a work in progress by Uma Dragon.

Thursday 12th April 8pm: Live music and movement from Sink and guests. See here.

Saturday 14th April 1pm: Reading of Goat Song.

Gallery 1, arts complex, St. Margaret’s House, 151 London Road, Edinburgh, Scotland.

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Untitled (The effect of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring and Kant’s 3rd Critique on the human brain: a functional magnetic resonance imaging approach)

from Daniel Margulies & Chris Sharp

The brain really is a piece of work. You pump in a supply of glucose and oxygen, and the craziest stuff comes streaming out. Amongst these streams are the works of Stravinsky, Kant’s Critiques, and more recently, this piece by Daniel Margulies and Chris Sharp. The film is a continuous fMRI scan of a brain listening to the Rite of Spring and pondering Kant — showing the floods and ebbs of cortical activity as the music rushes through it. Very suggestive, very beautiful.

“Untitled” is currently on show at the Wellcome Trust as part of their exhibition Brains: The Mind as Matter viagra 25 mg ohne rezept. If you are in London and haven’t been: go! It is a fascinating and delightful show, featuring: a brainbow mouse, a time lapse film of a chick’s brain spinning itself into existence, old medical movies of brain surgery, casts of eminent brains, trepanned skulls, anatomical drawings, phrenological tools, and much much more. Entry is free.

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Sonnet for Sylvia

by Martin Lewis

I frame this verse, in somewhat antique style,
For thee, Miranda open-eyed and bright,
The sole lady of thine enchanted isle
Now Prospero hath sailed into the night:

And both to him, and thee, I offer thanks
For that haven of fellowship and art
He conjur’d up on swift Sequana’s banks
By Notre Dame, Lutetia’s very heart.

In thy heart also may there ever dwell
The humane passion that thy father proved,
And strength besides, to live that passion well
And love the calling as he also loved.

Fight, like Sir George, with reason and with rhyme
The dragons of this calibanic time!

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‘The Women’ by Martin Lewis

He’d always been his mammy’s boy,
So when she died he was devastated.
During her last year or so
She became increasingly detached
From dull, sublunary here and now,
Though still always tender to both her men –
Adoring and dependent son and husband –
Until finally, bedridden, she had waited,
No sustenance or medicine accepting,
Just staring at the window: the spring trees
Sprouting in the windy urban hospital yard,
And the tiny crystal crucifix hung there,
Sparkling with sunlight like her sky bright eyes.
Continue reading

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In Remembrance of Simon Green’s Teeth

Quietly turning over a pack of tobacco at my desk, I found myself melting nostalgically as I stared at this image (printed as a health warning). It is I believe the first medical photo I have seen that even begins to approach the awesome horror of Simon Green’s teeth circa 2002, when he was living in the antiquarian section of George Whitman’s celebrated Shakespeare & Company bookstore in Paris.

One version of memory has it that incidents are like jars of air, sealed in time and strung out along the washing lines of our past. Another suggests memories are living, shifting memories of themselves, rescripted every time we visit them. Lingering over the photo, I felt I saw Simon’s teeth in my mind’s eye, and heard the cackles and phrases bubbling up through them. Moments later I was ransacking my archives to find the following description, written that winter, shortly before they were gone forever …

‘Simon is set to have his teeth out on Monday, with titanium implants soon to follow. I am sure they will be quite the hardest thing in his head. Still, I will rather miss the old teeth in his ruined cathedral of a mouth. Continue reading

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UNDER THE GAVEL OF JUSTICE

I recently read about a fascinating court case in Kenya relating to a hyena killed by a local family. The deceased beast was awarded legal representation, and indeed his lawyer spoke forcefully and eloquently, winning a ruling that the guilty family pay a number of goats to the hyena’s orphaned young in compensation.

The implications of this are profound and far-reaching, as it suggests a way in which creatures of nature (in this case a hyena) can be given both rights and a voice in a human court of law. Environmentalists have been keen to pick up on this, and to start thinking of it as a model for how other natural world parties suffering harm through human activities may be able to seek redress via existing legal frameworks. If so, activists could not only engage in advocacy, but literally become advocates in a trial of — say — wetland birds vs. an invasive real estate development company. And if legal representation can be extended to hyenas and other wildlife, why not to a river damaged by pollution, or an aggrieved landscape? Would it be possible for the Gulf of Mexico herself, through her lawyers, to sue BP for the oil spill?

I too was immediately interested in the Kenyan hyena case, though from a slightly different angle. It struck me that if nature and her creatures could take the stand as injured parties, and enjoy full protection of the law, a necessary corollary would be that they could also transgress against it, and therefore themselves face trial. This revelation … Continue reading

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