Capn Design

June 2003

This month I posted 32 entries, watched 4 videos.

R. Kelly's "Pee on You"

Dave Chappelle's mock video of a non-existant R.Kelly song. I laughed out loud, a lot. (via

Time to Play Tough

Posted June 30, 2003

Alright Cubs, you lost the series between the Sox for the millionth time, given up your hold on first place and have lost 11 of the last 17 games. It is time to step it up. There have been many years that you've started out strong and then faltered in the end. Don't let that happen this year.

Our pitching is excellent. It is rare for another team to score more than five runs on us. I had big plans for our offense too, after the 16-2 win over the Mets in the season opener. Unfortunately, injuries to Choi and Sammy--and the occasional suspension--have made it tough for the team to score runs in the last month. Now is the time to bring things back around. Choi will likely be back today and Sammy seems on the verge of a good streak. Granted the Sox intentionally walked Corey Patterson to load the bases for Sosa, but I have faith in him. He will prevail.

So I'll reiterate, please don't disappoint me. I have remained a loyal optimist and fan all these years and I don't even expect or really hope for a World Series victory. All I want to see is a commanding lead in first place and a trip to the playoffs. That will make me happy. At that point, feel free to let the bullpen fall apart and use bats made entirely of cork if you'd like. It won't matter as I will be happy enough.


Posted June 30, 2003

I think I'm going to take the plunge. I am going to join Emusic. I think that the iTunes music service is easier to navigate and I would rather use AAC files, with their better size to quality ratio, but iTunes doesn't offer 192 kbps files. Yes, AAC sounds better, but a 128 kbps doesn't compare to 192 kbps and these are going to be my permanent copies of these files.

I'll join at $14.99/month for the minimum of three months and download as many tracks as I'd like. I plan on building up my jazz and classical collections. I never end up buying all that much and if I can get 15 John Coltrane albums it is already worth the $45. They may not have a very complete collection of albums, but the amount of stuff I will get for the very low price will make me happy.

I will sign up next week and begin my downloading spree. Can't wait.

7up is Green?

Posted June 29, 2003

Earlier today I made my way over to Shaolin (Staten Island) to pick up my car and bring back to Brooklyn. When I arrived I was hot--hot enough to enter the seedy bodega near the entrance to the SI Ferry and pick up a cold drink. It had been a while since I was able to enjoy the refreshing relief that comes with a 7up, so I had my heart set on that beverage.

I went in and had trouble locating a bottle. Eventually I found one and thought, "Green?" I knew that 7up had gone and made their logo all crazy and upside-down like, but I didn't realize that their beverage had become Hulk-colored. I bought it and everything tasted the same, but then I realized that it was now caffeinated. 7up had always been caffeine-free, but they must have changed it as a part of their rebranding. This makes little to no sense to me.

Something about this new, hip 'tude struck me the wrong way. Also, I realized that there is 75ish grams of sugar in a 20 ounce bottle and that is ridiculous. So, I am dropping what was once the pure, beautiful, clear lemon-lime beverage that was 7up and moving to something similar and probably diet. I'll give Sierra Mist a go and support my aunt, who is a loyal employee of Pepsi Bottling Company. I could try dropping soda pop altogether, but that would clearly be absurd.

Drop soda pop? Puh-lease.

The Encore

Posted June 29, 2003

When I am the leader of a rock and roll band, there will be one rule. It will go unbroken. An encore must be earned.

I don't care if people come to expect an encore now because what they are seeing is not an encore -- it is an incredibly short second set. If you want to see my band play more songs then you have to clap and scream until you make us realize we are no longer fucked up art students. Show us you want us to play more.

I will not stand for bands that build in an encore, or even a second and third encore, which some of the big bands have been known to do. Almost every band, including at basement shows, seem to have an encore built in these days. If you want to see my amazing rock band play more songs, let us know. Say, "What the fuck?!? They didn't play Free Bird and I sat here for two hours wedged between the singing guy and the dancing, beer-spilling guy?!? I am going to clap until my hands bleed." Or simply, "That was so fucking good I want to hear more. I will scream until my vocal chords are tattered versions of what they used to be."

I just want everyone to have a bit more pasison. Clap like you mean it. Come back on stage only if you've earned it. Please, oh please, don't just come back on stage and play three new songs.

Thank you.

Harry Smash Hulk. Hulk Mad.

A look at why and how Harry Potter beat out the Hulk last weekend. Short answer: kids are smart.

Coudal Summer Reading

It's So Bare

Posted June 27, 2003

I recently moved into a new cubicle. The walls having nothing on them except for three huge bulletin boards. So it is a clean slate. I can do what I want with it. My first thought was using a centerfold from Dog Fancy magazine, which we receive at my house for some reason. I know there have got to be some other cool things.

What do you think? What should go up on my walls?

Bears Football Presented by Bank One

Posted June 25, 2003

"Hey, did you see the Bears game?"
"The who?"
"The Bears. The Chicago Bears. The football team."
"I've never heard of that team."
"Come on, they're one of the oldest teams. You love football; you must know who they are."
"Oh wait, do you mean Bears football presented by Bank One?"
"Please don't call it that."
"That's their new name. Will be for twelve years."
"I know, just don't remind me. It's depressing."
"At least the stadium is still called Soldier Field."
"True, but now that a spaceship has landed on it, I don't know how useful it will be."
"Well, hopefully someone's making some money."
"Just shut up."

110° = HOT

Posted June 25, 2003

Today is a high of 95°. Tomorrow is a high of 97°, with a heat index of 110°. What I'm saying is that it's going to be hot. Actually, it already is hot.

Last night was a struggle to fall asleep. I positioned my fan carefully and spread my body out so that no part of me was touching any other part. Still, it took a while.

I can't complain because it is sunny and warm, something we haven't had in a while. So, I'm going to shut up and enjoy the weather. (That is much easier to say knowing that I'm going to buy an air conditioner tonight and I'm currently working in an office at 68°.)

SI Yankees vs. Brooklyn Cyclones

Posted June 24, 2003

Tonight, I will be seeing the Staten Island Yankees take on the Brooklyn Cyclones in Staten Island. The game is at the Yankees' brand new park (well, not brand new but pretty darn new) that is beautiful and overlooks the water. Unfortunately, the photos don't do it justice so you'll have to see for yourself. Tickets were only $10 a piece.

Sadly for you, this game is nearly sold out. I would highly recommend you make the trip out to Staten Island for a game as the stadium is right there when you exit the boat and is really not a schlep at all. Good, cheap, fun.

The only bad part about all of this is my current lack of a digital camera. It would have been the perfect thing to have tonight.

Apple WWDC Keynote

Posted June 23, 2003

Power Mac G5

If you care about Apple, you are probably watching/reading the keynote right now. Go to MacRumors or MacMerc for live updates. MacMerc also has an AIM/iChat chat going. I'll give you my thoughts when it's finished.

It's Finished. Here are the goods:

Power Mac G5
1.6 GHz - $1999
1.8 GHz - $2399
2.0 Ghz Dual - $2999

The G5 looks to be a great processor. A single 2 GHz chip beat out the 3 GHz P4 in benchmark tests. The Dual G5 beat out a dual Xeon 3.06 GHz in Photoshop tests as well as many others. I will be getting one of these bad boys sometime next year.

Safari 1.0
New in 1.0: Safari is Mac OS X default browser, AutoTab loads folders quickly, Sync your bookmarks with iSync, Available in all Mac OS X languages, More AppleScripts available, Increased standards compatibility.

Seems pretty sweet to me. Even seems to run a touch faster. Best part of it all is the availability of the Safari SDK for developers (although it doesn't appear to be immediately available on the developer's page).

Panther preview
Panther is shaping up to be a mean beast. You can read about all the new features at the Apple site but I most look forward to the overhauled Finder, Font Book (font management app), overhauled Mail, Exposé, and built-in faxing.

iChat AV
Apple does audio and video conferencing through the IM protocol. This looks pretty sweet. The beta is available for free today (good thru Dec 31) and will cost $30 for Jaguar users and will be bundled with Panther. Then, to go with it...

A camera for videoconferencing, to be used with iChat AV. It is really small and has a lot of cool features (white-balance, autocontrast, etc.). A bit pricey at $149. Thankfully, you can use a firewire compatible videocamera instead of this with iChat AV.

That is it my friends. I think this is a big day for Mac lovers and computer users in general. The G5 really does push the envelope.

Refer 2.0.1

Posted June 23, 2003

Dean Allen has been working hard on a number of pieces of software, the biggest being his soon-to-be-available blogging tool Textpattern. The one app that I use regularly is Refer. This is a PHP/MySQL app that allows you to view recent referrers to your site. The last few releases have been nice but this one is the first hint at something bigger.

When Dean released 2.0 it's biggest changes were increased speed, stability and the ability to drop data after a select number of days. It was a good update. With 2.0.1 we gain some new functionality -- the ability to see your top referrers over 24, 48, 72 hours or a week. It makes things a lot of fun and is definitely worthy of more than a .0.0.1 release.

With 2.0.1 installed, I can now see that I have received somewhere near 500 hits from people looking for the cool Honda commercial. This is fairly ridiculous, but fun to know.

So if you're vain, curious or some combination of the two, then I suggest you install Refer 2.0.1 and give it a whirl.

I Feel Naked

Posted June 23, 2003

Today I sent off my G1 to the Canon repair shop to be repaired. Last week I mentioned that the camera was not working and things haven't changed. So I bit the bullet and I'm sending it off to the repair shop.

Without a digital camera I feel totally naked. I love my Lomo and Elan 7, but it's not the same as being able to take a photo and immediately post it to my site or email it to someone. I have grown attached to the digital lifestyle. Now I will have to wait at least two weeks before I see my camera again and my pocketbook will likely be a lot lighter at that point. This feels a lot like tv-turnoff week.

One upshot is that if my camera is broke, it means I might be able to get a G5 to go with a new G5. (Really I can't afford either, but a boy can dream.)

Number 5 in Hand

Posted June 21, 2003

As promised, I went over to B&N tonight to pick up the newest addition to the Harry Potter series. It was a ridiculous scene, which I'm sure you'll see pictures of in tomorrow's paper. I ended up going to the store near me, as I was lazy and just learned that there was one on the corner of State and Court. It didn't matter though as the place was jumpin'.

When I arrived at 11:45 I could barely get through the door. There was a sea of people, a number of whom were wearing costumes of some kind. Also, people who preordered the book received Harry Potter glasses, which many adults decided to wear around the store. I found this both amusing and confusing. It was confusing because at 12:30, people were still wearing them. Usually the novelty wears off after a few minutes.

In order to get your book you had to take a ticket. Those who preordered received tickets lower in number than us lower class walkins. When they began calling numbers at 12:01, they started with XX1700-XX1749 (The Xs are to protect the anonymity, I forget the first two numbers). I had number XX1842. That means over a thousand theoretical people were before me. So, I sat down and began reading Stupid White Men since, for some reason, I can't bring myself to buy it. I got through the first thirty pages when they got dangerously close to my number. I ended up picking up my copy at around 12:50 and heading home.

In hindside, there weren't a thousand people there, but 5-700 is not a bad guess. This was at one store in Brooklyn, so if you extrapolate that for the entire country, it's a lot of books.

The coolest thing was the range of people who were there. There were a lot of cute kids with their parents, but there were also plenty of people my age, single men/women of all ages, male teenagers in groups and pretty much anyone else you can think of (with the exception of any english professors at Columbia). The man in front of me in line had his wife waiting in the car outside and he made it clear that the book wasn't for him and she owed him big time. I think he was buying it for himself, but I didn't follow him outside so I have no proof.

I'm excited to see people excited about reading. I'm excited to see an entire bench of people reading the new book on the subway Monday morning.

Gothamist and 601am Happy Hour

Posted June 20, 2003

Last night, after grabbing dinner with the BirthdayBard and crew, I went to check out the Happy Hour event hosted by 601am and Gothamist. It was intended to be a happy hour party beginning at 7pm, but the party clearly didn't start until I arrived at 11pm. (Okay, so I caught the tail of end of it. My point is that I'm cool.)

Those from the crew whom I haven't met -- everyone but Aaron of 601am -- seemed really nice. There was even talk of more hanging out on the other side of the river (i.e. Brooklyn). This was far and away more social and more interesting than anything put together by Meetup.

The one thing that was a lot odd, and supposedly happened a lot before I arrived, was the bloggers who started fawning over those with the most number of hits -- the celebrity bloggers. I have determined that A-List Bloggers are the new bands. When I was 18,19 years old I would go ga-ga when I met a band I loved. Apparently, today's utes do the same for bloggers. Interesting.

Check out some photos from the event and go to the main site for some more info about the part-ay.

It's All Broked

Posted June 19, 2003

In the last twenty-four hours two very important things broke.

1. The power cable to my Powerbook.
2. My digital camera.

I'm not quite sure that the camera is broken, as it has exhbited the same behavior before, but I am concerned. It has definitely taken a beating over the last couple years and I wouldn't be surprised if it was truly broken, but I'm hoping that I will be able to revive it. Also, I had no plans to try and replace it anytime soon as it (a Canon Powershot G1) is a great camera and should have lasted me another couple years. I guess we'll see.

The power cable, on the other hand, is not at all salvagable. What really sucks about this is that they cost $80. EIGHTY DOLLARS! That is ridiculous. Seeing as this is my main computer, I am going to have to go and get tonight. Boo.

In other semi-crappy news, I realized I will be gone for eight working days next month on two trips. That is not good as it will make rent-paying difficult. Bah again.

Okay, I am done complaining. I haven't complained to the blog in a while and there are no humans around to feel for me, so I thought it was time to bring it back. I feel this [ ] much better.

Midnight at Barnes and Noble

Posted June 18, 2003

This Friday I will join thousands of 10 year-olds in a magical quest for mystical fiction. We will forage into the concrete jungle with only an umbrella and a fistful of cash, waiting in line for hours -- some for days -- to purchase the most anticipated novel in recent memory. We shall all end our quest for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.

Yes, I am going at midnight and yes, I am excited. In order to make my trip seem a little less ridiculous, I will be bringing my camera to document the experience. If anyone would like to join me Friday night at the Union Square Barnes and Noble, leave a comment or drop an email.

Same-sex marriage is now legal in Canada

Way to go. I hope that political wind is blowing south.

NYT Sunday

Posted June 16, 2003

Rarely do I have a chance to peruse the Sunday NY Times, but my parents bought this weekend I got to bring a couple sections home with me. Here are a couple articles that piqued my interest. (You'll need a free user id to access the stories)

My Son, the Cyborg
This was a very annoying piece that was kinda, sorta about videogames. All it said was, "Here are a bunch of stereotypes. Here are some new studies. We still don't know what's true, but we're skeptical." It was worthless, but I read in anyway because I liked the photograph.

Soldier Field Renovation Brings Out Boo-Birds
The NYT looks at the reactions to the new Soldier Field. I haven't seen it since the construction just began, but friends have told me it looks ridiculous. Now there are a lot of people scrambling to spin this the right way. Read the article if you're interested in architecture, Chicago and craziness.

A Strength Not Yet Tested, Not Yet Known
Why Don't Women Watch Women's Sports?
The first was more interesting because it gave a good cursory explanation of the dominance of men in competitive sports. I could explain it for you, but the article is short so you can read it yourself. The second looked at why men watch more women's sports than women. Both articles mentioned that men have a natural competitive attitude -- since they have historically tried to woo women by proving their dominance over other men -- that leads to a greater interest in competitive sports. The big question is whether this is a nature or nurture situation.

Digital Artists Find a Muse in SARS (And Each Other on the Internet)
A look at the SARS folk art that has been on display at Boing Boing all month. It's nice to see it get some good recongnition.

Final Cut Pro 4

Posted June 14, 2003

My parents are in town this weekend to visit me and to spend time with the fathers for the day. Today was "see the apartment and shop some more" day. Instead of shopping uptown, we went to Soho. Whenever I visit Soho it almost definitely means a trip to the Apple Store. Today was a good one too, because it was the release day for Final Cut Pro.

I was able to play with the software a bit, and immediately I was annoyed. The feature set is great, but it crippled a 1 GHz G4 Tower with 256 RAM. Before it could finish loading I was told that the mac was out of memory. That's not cool. So, I couldn't really play with it a whole lot, but I can say it is definitely a worthy upgrade from version three.

Soundtrack seems really cool and the general interface is improved. I also think that RT Extreme will be really helpful as it allows you to see a number of effects without rendering. It will save a lot of people a lot of time. There is plenty more to discuss but I don't think I can tell you anything you can't read here.

If I were in the video editing profession, I would buy this in a heartbeat. Since I'm not, I'll be looking for a copy from a friend to give it a true trial run.

Adult Swim is Winning

Posted June 13, 2003

According to this article:

"Monie's" success story is but a blip in comparison to the surprises Cartoon Network's "Adult Swim" is yielding among young adults. For the past few weeks, the show's 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. mature viewing animation block has been beating the Sansabelts off David Letterman, Jay Leno, Craig Kilborn, Conan O'Brien and Carson Daly among 18- to 24-year-old viewers, particularly males.

First, awesome. Second, this is not really a huge surprise to me. Sure, Conan and Dave are funny, but their shtick gets tired. So, we young males turn to edgier programming that we can't find on the networks. This is exactly why the networks got scared when cable broke big in the 80s.

Soon, as the article also mentions, TNN will become Spike TV and offer up a number of original adult-aimed cartoons. Two of these are "Striperella," with the voice of Pamela Anderson, and all new episodes of "Ren and Stimpy," which -- according to my roommate who works at the station -- shirk all boundaries and actually show Ren and Stimpy getting it on in bed. Spike TV definitely understands that young adults like cartoons, unfortunately their new offerings seem to be a bit forced.

I'm hoping this shift in viewership will send a message to the networks and all the channels: young people want interesting programming. We will not stand for "Good Morning, Miami" and "The King of Queens." These shows do nothing original and are plain boring. Bring us good, interesting, entertaining content and we will watch. We promise.

Hare Krishna!

Posted June 12, 2003

The last couple days there has been a group of Hare Krishnas singing and dancing around my neighborhood. I have now seen them twice. The first time I couldn't help but think about Airplane! and I kind of snickered to myself. The second time I thought, "Gee, they seem to be having fun." Now I know essentially nothing about the actual religion, but I do know that dancing around and singing in the streets sounds like a good time to me. Come to think of it, the hairstyle would be great for hiding my lack of hair. Maybe this is the religion for me.

"Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna, Krishna, Hare, Hare, Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama, Rama, Hare, Hare."

My Tellular Cellephone

Posted June 11, 2003

I purchased my phone, the Nokia 3360, in November 2001. It is now nineteen months old. Like most cell phones, the battery crapped out in about a year. Now, the screen is crapping out. On top of that, I am using a phone that is not compatible with the system offered by cellular in NYC. So, I am actually getting service through AT&T. Basically, it's not the best situation.

Now, I am starting to think about getting a new phone because I'm planning to stick with Cingular. I would like one that will sync with iSync--which means it will have a contacts section--and it would be nice to have a built-in camera. Unfortunately, Cingular does not currently offer a phone that does both of these.

As I've mentioned in the past, I'm eyeing the T610, which is supposed to be out this month and would fill all my needs. My only qualm is that I've heard wishy-washy things about Sony Ericsson phones. I could wait for new Motorola phones, but I don't know how long my phone's going to last.

What to do.

The Black

Posted June 10, 2003

As of today, I started a new job at the Jewish United Fund. I am actually a web intern, not a true web guy, but I'm getting paid and that's all that matters. Also, after my first half day of training, I'm liking the people a lot.

By taking this position, I am finally able to pay my bills without the parents and without using my savings. This is a good feeling. It makes me even more thankful that I have generous uncles living in Staten Island. If I couldn't have stayed there then I woundn't have made it to New York. I couldn't ask my parents for that kind of money and I wouldn't want to throw away all of my savings in order to go to a different city. So thank you Uncle Ted and Uncle Mike.

My entry into the world of the black comes nine months after my arrival in NYC. It seemed to me that this is a long time, but last night I was talking to some friends in my improv class, who have been living here for five years, and I was told that nine months is actually impressive. This put me at ease. It's good to know that I'm doing alright, even in this crappy economy.

Now that I am more or less breathing easy, I have to start thinking about my future-future. Am I going to grad school in 2004? Do I want to be a teacher or stick with design? Man, do I really have to take another standardized test? On second thought, I think I'll let the future wait another week or two.

Pixar's The Incredibles Trailer

Looks Hilarious. 17 months away.

Indie Label and iTunes

Notes from a meeting with indie record labels and Apple in regards to the iTunes Music Store. Definitely interesting.

Strangers with Candy: The Movie

(via Gothamist)

Who Needs A Freakin' Festival.

Posted June 6, 2003

Despite the fact that Field Day was cancelled (yes I know it was moved to Giants' Stadium but that show doesn't count), all of my midwest friends decided to come out to NYC anyway. I'm damn glad they did because that was a big reason I was planning on going to Field Day. I was thinking about dropping the cash, but when I heard 6 of my friends were coming from Chicago/Madison, I knew I had to go.

Now, sans concert, I am very happy. I'm hanging out with said friends and we're enjoying an amazing city together. Today I will get off of work early and have a grand ole time.

Fuck Field Day.

Poor Poor Sammy

Posted June 4, 2003

If you care even a little bit about sports, or you happen to flip past ESPN, you know that Sosa's bat is corked. This means that he drilled out some of the center of the bat and filled it with cork, which makes the bat lighter and more powerful. Obviously, this puts in question both his reputation and all of the stats he's accumulated. More important than that is how it will affect the Cubs season.

The first good sign is that despite all of the hoo-hah last night during the game, the Cubs were able to win it in the bottom of the ninth. That is a good sign. Also, the team is supporting Sammy, which at least shows that they aren't all broken up by the events. These bits make me optimistic. All I want this year is a team that will be strong to the end, unlike a couple seasons back when the Cubs led their division until the All-Star break, at which point they began to suck. My plea to you, my Cubbies, is to take on this event with grace and poise so that you might come out of this season as the victors. Go Cubbies.

In other Chicago sports news, Brian Urlacher just signed a nine-year deal with the Bears. Go Bears.

Field Day Flop

Posted June 4, 2003

This weekend I am planning on attending the huge music festival, Field Day Fest in Long Island. Oh, maybe not.

The gist of the problem is that Suffolk County, where the town of Riverhead is located, is refusing to give FDF the proper permits on environmental and safety grounds. This has put them in a serious pickle. In fact, they are not considering Giants' Stadium as the site for the event. To me, that seems like the death of the concert.

Aside from the amazing lineup, I was looking forward to a real music festival. It's what sets something like this apart from a radio station concert. If the show moved to Giants' Stadium all the life would be sucked out of it. There would probably be no camping, the sound would suck, there would be no independent vendors and everyone would forced to sit in a seat. Personally, I don't know if I'll even go if this happens.

The worse part is that the concertgoers will probably have no recourse if they move the venue. I will have paid nearly $200 for an event, but instead get a concert. Since they would be moving and not cancelling the event, they will have fulfilled their bargain. If it goes down to one day, we may get a partial refund, but that is still ridiculous. Honestly, I am pissed.

I really hope the original location works out.

UPDATE: Donkey Dong. This blows. It will not be in Riverhead/Calverton and people are likely to be offered a refund. The only upside is I have a bunch of money back I could really use right now.

Visual/Photo is Live

Posted June 1, 2003

The Visual/Photo section is now up and ready to be loved. Please check it out and provide feedback here or in the individual photos (especially if something doesn't look right). As you've noticed it, it's the harrumph! style of photoblogging now. I'll post a photo or set of photos every couple days or more (ideally) and there may or may not be some text. We'll play it by ear.

Also, you'll notice that the link to the photos from the homepage has changed, as has the masthead. As a bonus I've decided to enable trackback for the blog.

That's about it. Enjoy kids.


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