Saturday, June 19, 2004 at 20:20:28 (EDT)

Eye of the tiger

While trying to clean my back yard, cursing mulberries all the while, an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail came by, begging for me to take a buncha pictures of it with the 'macro' setting on my new camera. More pictures over here.

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Friday, June 18, 2004 at 12:25:44 (EDT)

Didn't need no welfare state
Now that Motico has entered the world of legitimate poster art, we are now listed on, a site for designers to showcase their work. More than that, if you're a sucker for a good flyer, you can wallow through the site and see just how good this oft-ignored medium can be. I became obsessed with poster art after reading my friend's copy of Persuasive Images, a coffee table book that focuses on propaganda art from the last century.

My first love was of course for the constructivist poster of the early Soviet Union. In terms of creating bold, somewhat melodramatic images, few could match the Soviet artists in their iconography. But the poster that really stuck with me above all was one was the burgeoning Nazi party in post WWI Germany. The poster itself is fairly simple, just sketches of German citizens, downstrodded and shabby. In huge letters the slogan declares: "Our last hope: HITLER." In the book the poster is presented on a lamp post on a street corner. A sea of passersby have stopped in their tracks forming a rough circle around the pole, just staring at the poster. It's not like there was a lot to read on it, just the one line. But its visual implication must have floored a people so beaten down by the previous war that it must have looked like prophecy to them.

Poster art is no longer the de facto method of getting the word out the people anymore, what with TV and the Internet. But I hope it never dies out completely. There's still something about seeing a really good flyer on the street that can't be duplicated by these other formats. In fact, the poster's influence is still heavily borrowed from for website design, such as Electric Turn to Me's home page and countless others.

I don't get to make flyers as much as I used to, although maybe I should. For Motico, I've been trying to stay away from the Soviet rip-off designs, as I feel I pretty much exhausted that with my old band. Here's a couple flyers I made in the past, along with their original version:

"We smite lazy workers."

"Literacy is the path to communism"

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Thursday, June 17, 2004 at 15:43:04 (EDT)

I'm not a sailor, I'm a captain

Tracy's new place is fantabulous!

There was a time when I didn't know anybody else who had a back yard. Now I know several people who have them, although nobody has a cement bunker adorned with lions.

I think the Perfect Company should change its
name or at least straighten out its sign.

I put $1 in the Buttermilk Bar jukebox and got 9 songs

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004 at 15:11:04 (EDT)

Even better than the real thing

Our new posters have arrived! Jason Frederick designed and printed this beast (I just added the stuff about the show so you can see what it'll look like). The real poster is better, for some reason the computer can't quite get the color tones correct, but it's quite striking. Pretty swanky, eh?

And people, you've got over a month to clear your schedules and come out to this show, so get on it! This is a rare Saturday night performance for which Zack had to take off from his job, so surely you can do us this one solid, right?

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004 at 14:06:14 (EDT)

Eat of my flesh
Part I of my plan for ever-increasing job-slacking is complete. I just got a wireless PC car for my work laptop, so now in theory I should be able to take this thing anywhere in the country and still do my job. In theory ...

See, as a perma-contractor, I don't really get time off of any kind. The agency I work through does offer vacation pay, however. This means after I work a certain number of hours (which keeps suspiciously increasing, à la Catch-22) I automatically get a week's pay added to my next paycheck. Not too bad, but I never know exactly when the next "vacation" is gonna happen. Added to that is the fact that a lot of my job requires me to do things on a daily basis (updating websites with vital, highly-ignored info) and nobody else seems to know how to do this, so they give me a hard time when I take time off. As much as I'd like to screw them over, I know a) my position with the firm is tenuous at best, and b) I pretty much have to make up any time off when I'm back on the clock. So, like the sea cucumber, which protects itself from predators by exposing its internal organs as bait, I am resigned to my fate, and find ways to survive the process any way possible.

So: my idea is, as long as I have decent internet access, I can do the bare minimum of my work from anywhere. If the daily work gets done, no one can complain, at least not for a while. Hence the WiFi setup. Now all I gotta do is figure out how to make the damn thing work.

The card works with the connection in my house, and I see on its Site Survey that there is another connection nearby I could possibly tap into. But so far it's not been working. I guess the likelihood of a hot spot so near my house is pretty slim, but for this thing to work I need to know I can log in anywhere. Which brings me to the commercial services like Boingo or T-Mobil's WiFi. If it will guarantee me access in most of the Lower 48, I'll pay for the privilege, I guess. But who knows, maybe by the time Motico hits the road for our first tour, everybody will have wireless access points in their homes and connecting will be no problem. But then I suspect I highly overestimate the rest of the country's need for wireless broadband access. Frankly, I don't know how you dial-up people do it, but I suppose your lives probably have some sort of benefit to which I'm not privy.

So is anybody out there using the commercial WiFi services? Anybody using WiFi at all?

I also got a memory card upgraded, so now we can all enjoy the lively antics of Mr Bones, captured here in his usual daily routine (MPEG, 882KB).

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Tuesday, June 15, 2004 at 14:13:53 (EDT)

Lazy bones

Ah, summer. The cats know how to appreciate it.

We sent off our first order of Motico stickers, soon to grace every stop sign and urinal in the city. We're hoping the oval sticker will help people learn how to pronounce the name, as it seems to give people a hard time. Then again, we have no real idea how it's supposed to be pronounced, but this is how we say it anyway. The 'tube' sticker will go a long way in further leading people to believe that Motico is in fact an automotive parts store.

Also on the way is a batch of reportedly bitchin' posters designed and printed by Jason of Stiff Upper Press. Hmm, now all we gotta do is play some more shows.

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Monday, June 14, 2004 at 11:09:09 (EDT)

Someone left the cake out in the rain

I've realized another problem with my photography. I need to learn to take pictures of stuff. Most of the photos I took the other night included cats or people, or both. Rarely do I take pictures of inanimate objects. I guess I got into this habit from taking vacation photos. I always hate looking at other people's pictures of things like mountains or buildings that have no context. But this only happens when I'm actually looking at somebody's snapshot collection in a real photo album. Online, for whatever reason, I'm the complete opposite. I wanna see the environment in which the pictures were shot. Even a park bench or something helps. Yet, I never do this myself, except when showing off new furniture I've acquired.

Last night was Meagan's birthday at some bar called Cellar, for which I can find no trace on the internet. How odd.

This was one of these situations in which the only person I really know is the Guest of Honor, and she has to run around talking to everybody. So I am left trying to think of something to say to her other friends besides "so did you come from Ohio, too?"

But I did meet some cool people, some other musicians and some guy whose unfortunate professional fate includes continually drawing work on various reality TV shows. The real highlight of the evening, however, was the fact that both the L and G trains were exceptional in their timing and got me home in record time.

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Sunday, June 13, 2004 at 15:04:09 (EDT)

I'm the monster in the valley
As usual, my weekend hasn't turned out as planned, but one thing is certain: I need work on my photography skills. I received my new camera and now have no excuse for the quality of the pictures I post here. With my previous camera I could blame a bad photo on the machine; now I can no longer do that. At any rate, I suspect if I actually read the manual I'll find out what all these buttons are supposed to do.




MRK was quick to test his signature style on the new camera.



I tried taking pictures of Oneida on Friday, but as you can see they turned out as little more than indistinct blobs in the shadows.

Part the Second: BBQ Psychedelics

I got a little better yesterday, when it was announced that a bunch of theater folk were coming over to inaugurate our new grill that we just got. While not an Official Jimmy Legs Party, it was a good way to see if we could successfully negotiate outdoor cooking, considering the trouble we have had in the past with those super-cheap grills. It looks like we did pretty well with it, at least better than I did with the photographs.

More pictures here.


The lights are fun for a while, but I'm gonna have to get better at this

Of course, Mr Bones moves so fast it's difficult to photograph him

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Week of June 13-19, 2004

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