Monday, August 11, 2003

Random Reviews

Three CDs I have gotten recently, based on recommendations from my 18 yr old nephew in Maine: The Coral, The Libertines, and Interpol. Took a few listens, but I like them all. The Coral the most, I think -- kind of Zappa-esque in places. All three have a retro, 80's punk feel.

I also got the new Audioslave CD. I broke the rules and only listened to 4 tracks or so before I gave up. Not much new there at all, way to much fuzz. I sold it to one of my youngest daughter's male friends for $1.

At the library a couple of weeks ago, I picked up two recent Multiverse/Elric based novels by Michael Moorcock, "The Dreamthief's Daughter" and "The Skrayling Tree". We really liked the Elric/Corum/Multiverse stuff in college. Moorcock's writing then was very much at a comic book level, pretty sketchy. Lately, I have seen reviews of him as getting general literary notice. I guess his writing is better, but these novels throw so much stuff together, it's hard to get much out of them. When pretty much anything goes, I don't know, it's just kind of hard to respect or see any principles.

I dutifully (since in college I had ~1000 Marvel comics) saw the latest Marvel comic movie, "Daredevil". I guess it was pretty well done, but it never quite sucked you in. I thought the two X-Men movies were very good, and Spiderman was also good. Still have to see "The Hulk".

Went to the Kentucky with meine frau last night and saw "The Whale Rider". Nice story, well done, and I love Maori tattoos. The indigenous people thing is a hard one for me tho. I mean, the point of this was that they had to break their sacred traditions to let a girl become a chief -- #1 strike against indigenous cultures, their women's rights views pretty much universally suck. OK, you get past that, they are practicing stick fighting, tongue-sticking-out to frighten your enemies, and the other warrior stuff. So, what next, get in the canoes and raid Australia? I read something recently (Sci Am?) where pretty much every study they do shows that the "noble savage" stuff if a total myth. In most of these cultures, tribal warfare is a major cultural activity, with murder rates rivaling Detroit or DC. On the "living in harmony with nature" thing, it's only because they don't have the tech to dominate. I think it's generally recognized that the big mammals of North America were hunted into extinction when the 1st humans came here. I guess that these cultures have beauty that needs to be preserved, but their primitive world views are just that, primitive. Maybe they, like a lot of modern people seem to want to be, are more satisfied and happy being ignorant of 99.9% of current human knowledge. But, who has the right to sentence them to this ignorance, and the 40 year life spans that go with it? In the name of what?

I should have had my bumper stickers printed up: "Embrace Complexity".

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