Saturday, March 7, 2009

Vignettes #3

Recently our online friends Ulli and Harry came to Regensburg. Besides wanting to meet us the main mission for this short trip was to visit the Kneitinger. Just like the Hofbräuhaus the Kneitinger is a large brewery tavern which serves its own beers, of course, but also has an excellent kitchen and a large menue with typical Bavarian dishes. It is reknown by and far as the best place to hang out in Regensburg, if you manage to get a table. In places like these you'll find Bavarian culture in full bloom, and a mixture of people unlike elsewhere.

So we had a good time there. After a couple of pints I needed to go to the restroom. Since the last time I was there the tavern had been redecorated and some of the rooms were rearranged. The new restrooms were in the back of the building a few steps down. I entered the anteroom, but unfortunately the doors of both restrooms were opened to the inside, and at first glimpse I could not see which room was which.

In the room straight ahead there was a drunken couple arguing loudly with each other and fiddling with a mobile phone. They looked typically battered from a life long of heavy drinking. That was the men's room.

I hesitated for a moment thinking about how to go around the two of them without getting involved into their argument. The drunken woman noticed that and politely she said to me: "Excuse me for using your toilet, but we urgently need to call a taxi."

A Scan a Day

Iron Man (2008)

Well made comic adaptation, not a masterpiece, but fun to watch.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Natalia Vodianova

Indeterminacy 22


when I was to give a talk
at Columbia Teachers College,

I asked Joseph Campbell

whether I should say something

(I forget now

it was
I was thinking of saying).

He said,


is the ‘should’?”

- John Cage

Ellen Page

Juno (2007)

A great feel good movie, although it's about a teenage pregnancy and I had my doubts before watching it. At one point in the movie Juno decides not to have an abortion and says: "Maybe they'll, like, canonize me for being totally selfless." And that's what the movie pretty achieves: Juno is the coolest kid you can imagine. And if American kids nowadays are in any way like her, we can have reason to find our faith in humanity again. But I suppose this is still just another wonderful fairy tale.

Mac MacGuff: Look, in my opinion, the best thing you can do is find a person who loves you for exactly what you are. Good mood, bad mood, ugly, pretty, handsome, what have you, the right person is still going to think the sun shines out your ass. That's the kind of person that's worth sticking with.

Gwyneth Paltrow

New stuff

Thursday, March 5, 2009

A Scan a Day

Vignettes #2

At school my friend Mac set himself a mission to become friends with every kid in the class.

He was very successful, and there were only Arno and Herbert left who hadn't agreed upon friendship yet. I told Max that I knew them both well and that they hated his guts, so it was no use trying to convince them.

Max disagreed and said: "There's absolutely no reason anybody should hate me! It is a necessity to be on good terms with everyone in your environment."

All four of us had more or less the same way home from school, and Max decided to make a finally bid for their friendship. He ordered me mot to interfere, so I let the three of them walk ahead of me. I watched and heard Max pleading and begging and even offering guests, and the other two mocking him into making even larger gift promises. At one point on the way they went around a corner, so I lost their sight for a few minutes.

By the time I turned around the corner Arno and Herbert were already quite a ways ahead. But Max was there tied to the pole of a street sign with the strings of his own jacket. So I had to untie him.

The next day Max started his endeavour anew.

Martha Streck

Indeterminacy 12

When I told David Tudor
that this talk on music
was nothing but a
series of stories,
he said,
“Don’t fail to
put in some benedictions.”
I said,
“What in heaven’s
name do you mean by
benedictions?” “Blessings,”
he said.
“What blessings?” I
“God bless you everyone?”

“Yes,” he said,
“like they
say in the sutras:
is not idle talk,
but the
highest of truths’.”

- John Cage

Kate Moss irrégulière

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Vignettes #1

As you may know I work for the customer service of a large online store. The other day I got a customer call from a young lady.

She said: "I bought a litter box, it is red."

I asked her what the problem was.

She explained that the picture on our website shows the same litter box in gray, and that's the color she had expected. She further told me that she knew about this specific brand of litter box and so far she could only find it in the colors of blue or red.

I told her that sometimes we can't sort items by color and customers may receive a random color they didn't expect. I checked the picture on our website: it was a black and white photo, so actually it was probably a blue one.

The young woman was content with my explanation.

Rie Rasmussen

Indeterminacy X7

Anyway, he was
explaining one day the meaning
of a Chinese character —
I believe it was
— spending
the whole time explaining
it and yet its
as close as he could get to
it in English

Finally he laughed
and then said,
“Isn’t it strange that
come all the way from Japan
spend my time
explaining to you
which is not to be explained?”

- John Cage

New stuff

Kate Moss irrégulière

Une robe noire pour un tueur (1981)

Fairly well staged political thriller with a downbeat ending.

La Femme aux bottes rouges (1974)

This is a movie in which Luis Bunuel's son Juan tries to assimilate his father's surreal touch to a story. The result is in parts amusing, but very patchy and very out-dated. Somehow, the touch of genius is missing.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Stalking Moon (1968)

Well-made, but not particularly thrilling western. It does hold your interest thanks to Eva Marie Saint and Gregory Peck.

Eva Marie Saint

Indeterminacy X10

I am not a good historian.

I don’t know


but every now
and then,
I go out,
hesitate at the door,

a cigarette’s still burning

in the house.

- John Cage

[Strangely, I have the same notion, when leaving my apartment]

A Scan a Day

Monday, March 2, 2009

New Stuff

Edita Vilkeviciute

ph: Solve Sundsbo

Indeterminacy 170

I went to hear Krishnamurti speak.
He was
lecturing on how to hear
a lecture.
He said,
“You must pay
full attention to what is being
said and you can’t do
that if you take notes.”
lady on my right was taking
The man on
her right nudged her and
said, “Don’t you
hear what he’s saying?
You’re not
supposed to take notes.”
She then
read what she had written
and said,
“That’s right.
I have it written down
right here in my notes.”

- John Cage

Kate Winslet

The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

Mildly entertaining without any additional redeeming value. I do get a kick out of all the arrogant talk about 'real' style coming from people who drink their coffee out of paper cups.

Karoline Herfurth

The Reader (2008)

This is another movie of which I read the novel in beforehand. No doubt this is a well made movie with extraordinary actors' performances. But the novel bears quite a few complexities for an adaptation. The story itself is first of all just a plain love story. However, it touches a whole universe of human problems: sex with a minor, severe guilt, truth/deception, Nazi atrocities, illiteracy, justice, adolescence, family, past, presence, etc.

This sounds like an overloaded story, but it all develops from the love interest and most points are only hinted at. The movie does the same, or maybe just isn't able to further the complex issues at hand. I did fear that a movie might overemphasize the romance, but luckily this has been avoided very well. All in all a film that you can talk about a lot, and the 2 young young female students sitting next to me obviously thought they'd need to do the discussing during the screening (loud potato chips bag included).

Oh, almost forgot to mention: the movie very well depicts Germany in the 50s and 60s, a time I very much remember from my childhood (the 60s, that is). So that was a special quality to the experience.

Keira Knightley

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The movies I watched in February

Ali (2001) 7
All the King's Men (1949) 7
Imagine: Annie Leibovitz: Life Through a Lens (2008) 7
Aparajito (1956) 10

Apur Sansar (1959) 10
Atonement (2007) 7
Aventuras de Juan Quin Quin, Las (1967)6
Bande à part (1964) 8

Becket (1964) 7
Betrayed (1988) 5
The Big White (2005) 5
Cat People (1982) 5
Clinton and Nadine (1988) (TV) 5
Dark Storm (2006) (TV) 3
David and Lisa (1962) 8

The Day After (1983) (TV) 5
Fat City (1972) 7
Agatha Christie: Poirot: Five Little Pigs (2003) 5
Gilda (1946) 7
Gran vida, La (2000) 5
Grizzly (1976) 4
The Happening (2008) 6
In the Valley of Elah (2007) 7
Jägarna (1996) 6
The Marksman (2005) (V) 4
Matthew Barney: No Restraint (2006) 5
Mulholland Falls (1996) 6
On Hostile Ground (2000) (TV) 3
Pather Panchali (1955) 10

Ray (2004/I) 6
Redemption of the Ghost (2002) 5
Retro Puppet Master (1999) 4
The River (1951) 8

Serpico (1973) 7
Two-Minute Warning (1976) 5
Un divan à New York (1996) 6
The Woodsman (2004) 7