More Beloved Even Than Bacon

Slow Food International’s Sloweb posts today on my favorite food, cheese. I love cheese so much, I can even enjoy simply reading about it. Although I wouldn’t describe my experience of this article as enjoyment. Shame-flavoured self-awareness was more the case. The European author travels to America to explore the raw milk cheese industry, and discovers along the way the thoughtless ubiquity of cheese this side of the pond.

The fact is that, in the US, cheese is not treated as a hedonistic, gourmet product as it is in Europe: a little piece as an appetiser with your aperitif, a selection of cheeses instead of meat for an alternative main course, a little piece at the end of a meal, as is customary in Greece or southern Italy. In the States, cheese is mostly transformed into a huge, unending flow that floods the whole market, and especially the fast food sector.”

This is one of those things you know, but you don’t dwell on, n’est-ce pas? I cannot even take refuge in the maple leaf on this one, as abominable eating practices appear to me to be shared across the border. I am left to contemplate the true nature of my relationship to cheese.

Slow Food International – Sloweb.

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Seeing More Of No One

Probably Not His Intention

arial & helvetica on friday, i hosted a screening of helvetica for some buddies of mine that didn’t know that there were other typefaces besides times new roman. it turns out, there ARE other typefaces and one of them is helvetica (and another of them is papyrus.) the documentary does not explore the relationship between helvetica and microsoft’s derivative, arial. so to help ignite the post-viewing dialogue, i made this supplement illustrating the key differences in letterforms. however, in place of any spirited debate, my buddies decided instead to take turns delivering roundhouses to my jaw, saying “a documentary about a font is as interesting as it sounds.” i could not agree more. __ update (9/22/2009): welcome internet-at-large! i am ostrich-feather-tickled that you are finding this chart to be such as gas. should you want to see my other type-related posts, you can give this a gentle click. should you want to see a collection of my favourite posts, you can get dirty with this link. should you want to close this tab and see what else is on the internet (hint: pictures of cats), you can hit cmd + w and be on your way.

This here is getting all over the internet, right quick too. But I will fan those flames, and my fanning is motivated by my longtime disdain for Arial. If you have ever doubted your Arial-hatred, just have a look at this and rest easy. It’s valid. Thanks Raynor.

the ragbag – arial & helvetica on friday, i hosted a screening….

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Afro. Galaxy.

Afrogalaxy. 2007

Mequitta Ahuja.

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Truth Fully Avenged

I bought Don Domanski’s book All Our Wonder Unavenged about a year after it had won Canada’s most prestigious literary prize, the Governor General’s Award, at the end of 2008. Last night, a year and a half later, I finished it. I had loaned it mid-read, impatient to share its joys, and then it took a while to come back to me.

It was only the second book of poetry I’d read. I’ve enjoyed poetry as much as anything, but almost always in an anthology or periodical. I don’t know what possessed me to buy it, but I bought two – one for me, one for my Dad. Turned out they were the last two in the store, and signed.

I’ve been googling around about this poet today, as I always do when something moves me, and have reached the conclusion that Don Domanski is succeeding. Sure, I could have concluded this from the GG, but hear me out.

As I contemplated my experience of his poetry, I identified various sources of enjoyment. The subject matter – explorations of existence in pastoral settings – would tend to appeal to me. The accessibility of the language and structure welcomes the relative neophyte like myself. But what was lighting it up like transcendental truth? For these poems were fully true, true in every way they could be. Not just “I recognize the metaphor” true, “I agree with the observation” true. The magical property of the poems is that they seem to communicate the full essence of a thing.

Now, my point about succeeding. Here’s Domanski talking to the CBC:

“What I’m doing is making my way to presence…There’s a very deep truth there that strikes well below the thinking level, a connection richer than language, which can give words a more inclusive depth and reach.”

C’est ça! The transportational quality of the poems – drifting you here, and here, and here – does seem to originate from something richer than language.

This experience grows out of reading the poems for a little while, so I don’t want to include an excerpt or single poem here. But here are a couple of links to Domanski and his work:

All Our Wonder Unavenged on Amazon

On the Governor General’s Awards site

The CBC interview I reference

Please Begin at 5:15

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Dirty Projectors – Useful Chamber

Not because the music before 5:15 is less important, but because we are all so rushed on our hamster wheels, it’s not realistic to ask anyone to look at this photo for six-odd minutes. Just give those spawn-of-Vampire-Weekend-and-Of-Montreal Dirty Projectors 60 seconds please. The last 60 seconds make the point best, I feel.

Mascot Escort

Dramatically Competent

Named My Dog Rainer

When I die, this is where I will go. Meanwhile, I want this looped, playing on my wall.

Air Out The Moat

The card on the wall says “2 channel video, miniature model, mirrors, glass, black light, ghost video, cut-out projection, audio, false walls”. Makes you instantly dig for the price of admission, doesn’t it? Hoffos has said in interviews that he feels artists should give themselves a second childhood. Entering a carnivalesque installation like Scenes From The House Dream feels like joining him there. Learning the grownup thinking behind this atmospheric trip (Jung, bla bla, house as self, bla bla) does not break the spell – it only adds the sensation of the top of the head raising like a drawbridge, giving your moat some air. The work is currently touring out of the National Gallery of Canada.

David Hoffos.

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