arcana imperii :: the book of j


photoblogging in london

please note the addition of a new link to the sidebar; this time to a brilliant new photoblogging project in london, where «a group of photographers visit and capture a different part of London Village in their own inimitable style. the project aims to see how differently people view and perceive the same place through the lens».
... go have a look! don't miss the savoy photos. cheers.


oddly enough this word has been in my vocabulary since childhood. its meaning clear since the very first moment i heard it used to describe someone in my presence.

a quick look round the net returns things like: energumen ~ n. a person possessed by an evil spirit; a demoniac. haha! as if! at least (and, of course...) the compact oxford english dictionary defines the synonym demoniac as a person supposedly possessed by an evil spirit. better. but i'd prefer something along the lines of «a person behaving as if possessed (as we've come to understand this culturally), i.e., out of control, irrational and agitated».

i found myself again in the presence of one such being just last night. what's to be done to help? wonder whether ringing my alma mater, where the exorcist was filmed and just steps away from mr w.p. blatty's own home, would yield some answers... ;-)

i'm not used to radio adverts. for years my radio «dials» in washington, dc remained immobile at WETA-FM 90,9 until just over a month now, when as you might have read, the one ms rockefeller decided she needed more $$$ or was so bored that she turned that splendid station into yet another round-the-clock-won't-shut-up talk/news/talk/news/talk/news/talk/news-drive-me-mad outlet. just a click or two away from an existing and almost identical station, damn and blast! so we get a few additional bbc programmes... bah!

i've hence grudgingly begun to temporarily accept forced migration to a commercial classical station (they consider playing ONE BLOODY MOVEMENT a non-interrupted, advert-free gift to humankind) and i'm learning to simply tune-out the sinfulness of the enterprise... yet every now and again some rather tiresome voices do get through and surprise me quite a bit... just now, and for the second time, i've heard what seems to be the audio version of advertising small-print caveats (you know, the bit that's spoken quicker than greek in telly news broadcasts and somewhat sotto-voce) alerting that something is (could this be true?) actually cheaper in the new york city metropolitan area... what is it? bagels? crack? i don't know, but i think i should try hard and find a webcast of music through the night...


word (and quotation of the day)... it's monday...

(FRAK-shuhs) adjective

1. irritable; cranky.
2. unruly.

from middle english fraccioun, from Late Latin fraction-, stem of fractio (act of breaking), from Latin fractus, past participle of Latin frangere (to break). ultimately from indo-european root bhreg- (to break) that's also the progenitor of words such as break, breach, fraction, and fragile.] interesting for me to note that the idea of being in any state other than happy is always seen as the result of not being whole (as wtih today's word) or not being at ease... (disease).

so, very fitting for today... it's monday and i'm not rested, mostly as a result of some of the most vividly remembered nightmares ever. and to think that it'd actually take so very little to permanently alter the status quo. but that's just me being, well, rational.

«and none will hear the postman's knock / without a quickening of the heart. / for who can bear to feel himself forgotten?» -w.h. auden

the music and magic of words... via wordsmith's a.word.a.day.

i'm sorry but... could you repeat that?

well, i don't know what i actually authorised or prevented nor whether it was the right choice. i reckon it may make perfect sense in chinese... since americans are hardly pursuing gradutate degrees in, for instance, computer science, and instead of attaching a visa/resident permit to the diploma earned by many a brilliant asian student, the government is rushing them onto planes and out of the country, we figure that perhaps we don't need very idiomatic english in our hastily and shoddily produced and ridiculously expensive buggy software, which if already lacking in all matter of directions and troubleshooting, why bother with clarity?

sos... winXP hell!

you may imagine what an insiduous and ruinous pest may cause this stop error to occur when any application is launched either immediately after login or at the conclusion of boot up/log on. all searches for solutions and attempts at correction have yielded limited results and the internet doesn't seem to've had much luck either... almost every posting on the subject has gone unanswered (most seem to note the problem with only one application) or suggestions apparently never worked. i am convinced this is the result of a hijacking attempt (remote procedure) and a successful one. seems to me this is an lsass worm/trojan/rat (along with the perpetrator) or an attempt to remotely install a server on my winXP box) which perhaps did not deploy properly as a result of anti-virus/spyware/malware, a bit o' quick thinking on my part and so on...

've developped a couple of temporary "work rounds" but it's a bloody pain and i don't wish to install the OS for a third time, especially when it's absolute conjecture to believe that radical move would correct the problem... naturally, microsoft is clueless and has nothing to say on the matter... maybe they shall when i present them with an invoice... why shouldn't they pay me for the loss of productivity, aggravation, development, research and tech supoort services i'm providing as i search for a solution? ;-)



google code and new atom

google launched google code a couple of days ago, thus providing a home for all their open source software and APIs, and a couple of feeds along with project and organisation links. and better yet i'd say, the blogger developers network just released a brand new atom API & feed format. brilliant for new entries, editing old ones and more.



i've been dealing yet again with a malfunctioning system, this time continued intrusions by a hacker, someone i know and will soon find out what high price to pay for living his life hiding behind his monitor (and dare i say at my expense?)... as well as with a few virii... which reminds me of this quote by stephen hawking, the brilliant and memorable english cosmologist and physicist:
«i think computer viruses should count as life. i think it says something about human nature that the only form of life we have created so far is purely destructive. we’ve created life in our own image.»

a jewish proverb

«truth is the safest lie.»

and better than acting up and playing, poorly, the part of the offended damsel... ugh! grow the fCK up!

garden state 01

wait in line
'till your time
t[r]icking clock [!]
everyone stop

everyone's saying different things to me
different things to me

do you believe
in what you see
there doesn't seem to be anybody else
who agrees with me

do you believe
in what you see
motionless wheel
nothing is real
wasting my time
in the waiting line
do you believe in
what you see

nine to five
living lies
stealing time
everyone's taking everything they can
everything they can

do you believe
in what you feel
it doesn't seem to be anybody else
who agrees with me


ah and i'll shout and i'll scream
[how i wish i'd had not seen]seen
and [you]'ll hide away for another day


in the waiting line by zero 7, (ed. j), garden state soundtrack


some day

some day
you will find me
caught beneath a landslide
in a Champagne Supernova
in the sky
some day you will find me
caught beneath a landslide
in a Champagne Supernova,
a Champagne Supernova
in the sky...


how many snowflakes fall in a snowstorm?

it's been snowing in the nation's capital and while most transients, along with VA and MD residents, complain about the cold, the wind, the slippery surfaces yet don't dress properly, insist on driving, and as if they were in suburbia in the middle of august (ugh!), others dress up warmly, take walks and enjoy the magic of gas light reflected, the ethereal landscape of our residential neighbourhoods and the marble-clad federal city while tossing back a few hot toddys and enjoying that special something unique to a snow day away from office and school. some even get to ponder just how many snowflakes fall in a snowstorm...

and along with sam and his archive we can have a guess... he writes:

«guessing massive numbers like the number of flakes in a snowstorm, the number of grains of sand in the world, the number of blades of grass and the like is all about approximation. so let's dive right in here and make loads of wild guesses in the hope of getting an answer that nobody would dare call incorrect. sound okay?

okay, let's assume for the sake of argument that we're dealing with a storm lasting about five hours, and that it's about the size a largish city. let's go with my home town of nottingham, which my atlas tells me is very approximately 6.4 miles square (it's about the same size as one of the big squares). i like metric measurements, so that's 10.3km squared so call it 100 square kilometres.
[dc is 68 square miles, 177 square kilometres]. we'll also assume the storm is reasonably light, so about ten snowflakes landing per second per square metre of ground. dunno how much snow you get in your many and various countries.

five hours is 5 x 60 x 60 = 18,000 seconds. i'm feeling generous, make that 20,000 seconds per storm.
100 square kilometres is 100 x 1000 x 1000 = 100,000,000 square metres.

10 snowflakes per second per square metre multiplied by 100,000,000 square metres multiplied by 20,000 seconds per snowstorm EQUALS 20,000,000,000,000 snowflakes per snowstorm.

twenty trillion. i dunno about you, but that sounds kinda low to me, but the answer is of course give or take three orders of magnitude, or maybe more. feel free to correct me if you have the faintest clue what you're doing.»

how about that?! kris, rt, gp, bos j, anything you'd like to add, mates?!


fortune cookie

«handsome is as handsome does.»

quotation of the week

«There are those to whom one must advise madness.»
~Joseph Joubert



whoa! danger, will robinson!

check this out! just in, and i think the pattern has already updated three times this week !

Trend Micro
New Virus Pattern Release

Pattern Version: 2.466.00
Release Type: New Malware Threat

03 March 2005, 06:04:24 (GMT -08:00)

New Viruses Detected:
There are [724] new viruses detected by the pattern file.
All detail virus names please refer to the list below [...]

seen on the web: wists

i have yet to sign up (it allegedly takes a mere thirty seconds), but given that i've been developping a favourites & bookmarks webpage i could share with friends (and remaining displeased with short-lived results) suddenly wists seems like a better and brilliant option.

via telaraña.

tori's top twelve

as i embarked on a hard, very personal and meaningful self-study of piano a few years ago i learned that noah adams (of npr's all things considered fame) had not only begun a similar journey a bit earlier, but had written a book about it, entitled piano lessons: music, love & true adventures. i began a two-year, physical search for a first edition of the book which the splendid powell's bookstore in portland, oregon finally yielded. i sprinted back to my favourite room at the benson hotel, settled into the most comfortable chair in it and read until i'd finished... «and i moved from the messed-up middle section, to the final measures, the melody returning, the b-flat, the f,then a grand and difficult chord, just before the end. i play the chord and i know neenah is crying. what surprises me is that i'm crying too.» i had to wipe tears off my face, imagining myself, also clad in a tux or perhaps not, surprising a lover for christmas with a rendition, however amateurish, of the lover's absolute favourite song or piece, after a year of clandestine study and rehearsal... but i daydream again... the point is that mr adams met tori amos, not just the singer-songwriter, not the piano-player, but indeed the pianist, and introduced her artistry to me via his book. sadly, i've not yet become as familiar with her music as i might be with her lyrics. and while studying current trends in web-design i ran into the beautiful everything tori site where i was thrilled to find a list of her current top-twelve favourite songs. i've always been curious about the music musician's like and listen to as more often than not, the choices prove quite revealing and rather surprising to me. they also allow me to discover what sometimes end up becoming favourites of mine as well.

here's tori's list:

01. livin for the city ~ stevie wonder
02. drive ~ rem
03. ivo ~ the cocteau twins
04. desire as ~ prefab sprout
05. a case of you ~ joni mitchell
06. cissy strut ~ the meters
07. the last chance texaco ~ rickie lee jones
08. jerusalem ~ sinead o'connor
09. a forest ~ the cure
10. fire and rain ~ james taylor
11. beautiful feeling ~ pj harvey
12. feeling good ~ nina simone

what does this list tell you? what does it do for you? what about the all-time top-twelve tori amos songs?


du vet att jag vet att du vet att jag vet.

et un poème

cet amour
~jacques prévert, paroles

cet amour
si violent
si fragile
si tendre
si désespéré
cet amour
beau comme le jour
et mauvais comme le temps
quand le temps est mauvais
cet amour si vrai
cet amour si beau
si heureux
si joyeux
et si dérisoire
tremblant de peur comme un enfant dans le noir
et si sûr de lui
comme un homme tranquille au millieu de la nuit
cet amour qui faisait peur aux autres
qui les faisait parler
qui les faisait blêmir
cet amour guetté
parce que nous le guettions
traqué blessé piétiné achevé nié oublié
parce que nous l'avons traqué blessé piétiné achevé nié oublié
cet amour tout entier
si vivant encore
et tout ensoleillé
c'est le tien
c'est le mien
celui qui a été
cette chose toujours nouvelle
et qui n'a pas changé
aussi vrai qu'une plante
aussi tremblante qu'un oiseau
aussi chaude aussi vivante que l'été
nous pouvons tous les deux
aller et revenir
nous pouvons oublier
et puis nous rendormir
nous réveiller souffrir vieillir
nous endormir encore
rêver à la mort,
nous éveiller sourire et rire
et rajeunir
notre amour reste là
têtu comme une bourrique
vivant comme le désir
cruel comme la mémoire
bête comme les regrets
tendre comme le souvenir
froid comme le marble
beau comme le jour
fragile comme un enfant
il nous regarde en souriant
et il nous parle sans rien dire
et moi je l'écoute en tremblant
et je crie
je crie pour toi
je crie pour moi
je te supplie
pour toi pour moi et pour tous ceux qui s'aiment
et qui se sont aimés
oui je lui crie
pour toi pour moi et pour tous les autres
que je ne connais pas
reste là
lá où tu es
lá où tu étais autrefois
reste là
ne bouge pas
ne t'en va pas
nous qui sommes aimés
nous t'avons oublié
toi ne nous oublie pas
nous n'avions que toi sur la terre
ne nous laisse pas devenir froids
beaucoup plus loin toujours
et n'importe où
donne-nous signe de vie
beaucoup plus tard au coin d'un bois
dans la forêt de la mémoire
surgis soudain
tends-nous la main
et sauve-nous.

note: with a dramatic recitation of this poem i won one of my four first prizes in the concours oratoire (i also won sixth and third). i was a teen in high school. and it still informs my life. yet its meaning and message was never more evocative nor clear in its purity, truth, hope, despair, longing, wisdom and glory than today.

listening to...

a song by the cure:

[...] i'm in a room without a light
a room without a view
i'm here for one more treacherous night
another night with you
it tortures me to move my hands
to try to move at all

my body is cut and broken
it's shattered and sore
my body is cut wide open
i can't stand anymore

it's torture
but i'm almost there

and still the hardest part for you
to put your trust in me
i love you more than i can say
why won't you just believe?

oh you know that i'd do anything for you...
we should have each other to tea huh?
we should have each other with cream
then curl up in the fire
and sleep for awhile
it's the grooviest thing
it's the perfect dream

into the sea
you and me
all the years and no one heard
we missed you hissed the lovecats

hand in hand
is the only way to land
and always the right way round
not broken in pieces
like hated little meeces...
how could we miss

i love you... let's go...

it's the grooviest thing
it's the perfect dream

every day i lie here
and know that it's true

all i really want is you

please come back
please come back

please come back
all of you...

understanding j

«a dark point in his mind is as unbearable to him as a grain of sand in his eye.»
~joseph joubert


«celui qui n'a pas le goût de l'absolu se contente d'une médiocrité tranquille.»
~paul cézanne

a shout

bloody hell, don't cut what you can untie, man!


insider secrets revealed!

yep. time to tell all or is it?! have a look at the new MediaFlunky, (note the new link in the sidebar) just making its debut on the blogsphere. ten or so hot juicy inches... of almost daily insider commentary on the entertainment industry. c'est du fun!

small change

«her failure lay within herself, in her abrupt pride, and sudden sharp intolerance, and her inability, when in certain moods, to accept the small change of friendship, even from those who she knew loved her deeply.» ~noel coward, present indicative

via the splendid small change, elizabeth hay's brilliant and fascinating collection of tense, interlocking short stories about friendships gone wrong, survival and regret which comb the pained underside of obsessional entanglements looking for understanding and relief.

the hell with you!

«WETA 90.9 FM in wahington, dc is no longer a mixed format station that broadcasts classical music... i know that this change will be difficult for some. [but you know what? get a life and get over it! we've sold out and are here to serve our particular corporate backers and personal financial interests. we've pledged to uphold the principles of the aol philosophy of life and so vow to serve the interests of the lowest common denominator among you. so if you're one of the millions of stupid nerds interested in classical music, buy your own CDs you cheap bastards, and play them at home or work or in your dilapidated chauffeur-less pintos, advert-free and to your antiquated heart's content. we're here to make money, mulah, big cheddar, you hear, and not to provide music for the soul of the intellectual, cultured, élite minority and other wannabees. but you're more than welcome to renew your pledges of support].» ~sharon rockefeller, [fbic*]

*fbic: fat bitch in charge. [no offence nor disrespect intended].