Well Done, Pippa!

I don’t like to end the blog day with a post full or ire, and I’ve been meaning to post this photo for a couple of days now.

Ladies and gentlemen, AKMA’s daughter Pippa’s excellent remix of a “God Bless America” T-shirt:

Photo: Pippa Adam and her 'God Bless America...and everybody else' T-shirt.

Click the picture to see the original.

For the full story, see AKMA’s entry.

Normally, when I salute someone, I say “A filet mignon on a flaming

sword to you!” However, AKMA’s family are all vegetarian, so I shall

accomodate Pippa’s diet: “A grilled portobello on a flaming sword to



One More Thing…

According to Google, I own the phrase “I’ve seen better paper after wiping my ass”. I might donate it to NOW magazine, though.

Toronto (a.k.a. Accordion City)

In Which Our Hero Begs to Differ with the Local Alt-Weakly

After reading this article, I think that Toronto’s NOW Magazine should adopt a new slogan:

“I’ve seen better paper after wiping my ass”.

When the Dalai Lama — who also has my esteem and respect — passes

away, I’ll bet good money that these asshats will be mutilating

themselves with grief and carpet-bombing him with effluvious praise in

their elegy.

If you want a far better left/liberal write-up, try this post in Joshua Micah Marshall’s Talking Points Memo.


Ah, Poop, How’d I Miss This?

Logo: Social Tech Brewing Co.

I missed the Torontoist announcement about the meeting of the Social

Technology Brewing Co., who describe themselves on their web page as…

an informal gathering of people working on, or interested in, the

intersection of technology and the not-for-profit community in

Vancouver and Toronto. The simple mandate is for people from tech,

business and local not-for-profit organizations get together over

beers, on a monthly basis, to discuss how technology can be used for

positive social change.

Apparently, they had some kind of gathering tonight and I was unaware of it until now. I should get on their mailing list…


"Hackers aren’t Like Painters" (or: "For Starters, Painters Get Chicks. And Gonorrhea.")

Book cover: Paul Graham's 'Hackers and Painters'.

Back when I had a personal technical blog (The Happiest Geek on Earth, no longer online),

I used to devote some time to voicing my annoyance with Smug Lisp

Weenies, of whom Paul

Graham is a high-ranking member, if not its Supreme

Commander. Some of these rantings were even chronicled

in Boing


In the time that has passed between then and now, Graham’s stance

towards non-Lisp languages, particularly one of my favourites, Python,

has mellowed. He’s also found other topics to write about. As a


a visit to no longer results in Mr. Graham’s getting up

my nose, at least as long as I don’t peruse the archives.

However, the Law of Conservation of Annoyance has asserted itself, as

Maciej Ceglowski

— both a programmer and a painter — has a bone to pick with Mr.


About two years ago, the Lisp programmer and dot-com millionaire Paul Graham wrote an

essay entitled Hackers and


in which he argues that his approach to computer programming is better

described by analogies to the visual arts than by the phrase “computer


When this essay came out, I was working as a computer programmer, and

since I had also spent a few years as a full-time oil


everybody who read the article and knew me sent along the hyperlink. I

didn’t particularly enjoy the essay — I thought the overall

tone was

glib, and I found the parallel to painting unconvincing — but

it didn’t

seem like anything worth getting worked up about. Just another

programmer writing about what made him tick.

But the emailed links continued, and over the next two

years Paul Graham steadily ramped up his output while moving

definitively away from subjects he had expertise in (like Lisp) to

topics like education, essay writing, history, and of course painting.

Sometime last year I noticed he had started making bank from an actual


book of collected essays, titled (of course) “Hackers and

Painters”. I felt it was time for me to step up.

Even if you’re not a computer programmer, you’ll find

Maciej’s essay, titled Dabblers and Blowhards, interesting — even if

only as a look into what geek pissing contests, complete with cruel-albeit-funny cheap shots, look like. He doesn’t

stray too far into technical esoterica and merely argues that hackers

are much, much closer in sprit to engineers rather than artists.


So Bad It’s Great: Video of Tommy Seebach’s "Apache"

Photo: Still from Tommy Seebach's video for 'Apache'.

“Who knew that Steve Buscemi played keyboard in the seventies?”

After showing the video of Tommy Seebach’s cover of The Shadows’

surf-guitar-twang classic Apache to my friend, he looked at me and

said “I will never feel like a loser again.” How many videos can claim

to have such self-esteem boosting power? Watch it now!

You can either watch it on the web:

or download it to your computer:

If the tune sounds familiar, it’s probably because you’re familiar with the version done by Michael Vines’ Incredible Bongo Band. It’s used as the music for the title sequence of the movie Snatch and as the first track of Fatboy Slim’s excellent DJ mix album On the Floor at the Boutique.

Photo: Still from Tommy Seebach's video for 'Apache'.

Oooooh yeah.

It Happened to Me

This is What Daylight Savings Time Feels Like

Photo: Penguin about to wake up a polar bear with a pair of cymbals.