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The Writings on the Stall

Sunday, 2004-03-28


Currently on the ARP — despite all current appearances.

Saturday, 2004-03-27

spammers should be able to drop the soap in prison

Who the fuck is and why is he/she/it filling my inbox and littering the web?

Wednesday, 2004-03-24

the ten count

In middle school I remember standing in single-file lines to access the water fountain. Students were (and this may or not be universal) allocated ten seconds of face-to-faucet time. Any more and we'd risk admonishment from our teacher.

To this day I count to ten and step away — regardless of whether someone waits behind me or not.

Tuesday, 2004-03-23


SXSWrap-Up via Wired — because I'm too lazy to continue to do so myself.

Sunday, 2004-03-14

sxsw interactive web awards 2004

I was told before the start of The SXSW Interactive Web Awards that there would be a couple of award winners who wouldn't be able to make it. Three in total.

Turns out there were four. I know this because I was the lucky one who had to accept an award on each absentee winner's behalf a total of, yeah, four times.

Going in to accept for best Classic website, David Bowie/Ziggy Stardust 30th Anniversary, there was no set game plan. Little did I know, my first acceptance would create a hit of a shtick (this is entirely based on audience reaction, not my own ego). True to character, I said "I don't know what I'm doing here. I'm just an intern," or something to that end.

For the second (best Educational Resource) I was already extremely nervous and congratulated "Educational Resource" not Answerbag. Two down. One to go (again, so I had thought).

By this time, my creative and improv capabilities (both none) were running low. So I asked Shawn what could be said for best Services website — HP Digital Imaging - You — that would be funny and original. With his advice, I got up to the lecturn and tacitly said "I like my printer." Finally, I thought "whew I'm done." Sadly, it wasn't yet meant to be.

To add to my embarrassment, Peggy (SXSW Volunteer Coordinator) had my infamous badge handed over to the MC, John Halycon Styn. In turn, he showed it on the video projection screen for all to see.

When the winner of best Student website was announced (Elusive Realm New Media) there was about 15 seconds of delay before we realized no one was available to accept the award. I got up once more and started walking to the podium. The first thing I said was "My dog did actually eat my badge" followed by "as a student, I feel I can actually accept this award."

So I did and that was that.

supersize me

After a long day's hard work, I headed to the SXSW Interactive Opening Party, held this year at frog design. Seemed pretty cool overall, but there weren't too many familiar faces in the midst.

Some started walking a block over to the Paramount Theatre for the documentary Super Size Me. Having heard the hype surrounding the film — must have been a lot of it, as I'm not a film buff — I decided to give its rapidly building queue a shot.

Thanks to the assistance of a co-staffer, who spotted a poor, solitary Intern, I managed to get in. Immediately after settling, I noticed that two rows in front of me there happened to sit Ethan Hawke, one of my favorite actors. Being a celebrity-encounters-newbie, and having seen so few celebrities before, I found myself sadly amazed by minor details (e.g. Ethan eats skittles?). This unhealthy "obsession" faded as the lights dimmed.

During question and answer, I took a few pictures of Morgan Spurlock, the film's "Producer / Director / Guinea Pig." Craziest thing: a single picture with Ethan snuck into the set.

Regardless of the aforementioned celebrity sighting, make sure to check out Supersize Me. It'll make you think and/or concerned for the current state of health in America.

Friday, 2004-03-12

my dog ate my badge

Last nite my puppy (Roary) got ahold of my SXSW Platinum badge. That little punk chewed it up.

Today I went to Volunteer Central to get it replaced and got razzed so badly that I couldn't even decipher where individual cracks were coming from. Plans are apparently now in the works for my new nickname — on all future badges — to be Jonathan "My Dog Ate My Badge" Horak.

Thursday, 2004-03-11

borderless. well, kind of

This site is — for the most part — now borderless. Any opinions? (Better before?) Expect to see further changes in this space over the next week or so.

Friday, 2004-03-05

a dash of karma and a tablespoon of guilt

I've never been a big fan of Martha Stewart.

I'll back up. I consider her to be both stong-willed (compliment, not sarcasm) and a truly remarkable businesswoman. Others, in my presence, have referred to her as a shrewd businesswoman: both a stab and reaction of fear against a female in a position of power. I greatly respect that she managed to break through the glass ceiling, on her own abilities. More women definitely should — and should be able to do so.

Yet I always wondered at what cost. What was the cost of Martha Stewart's success? And what did she do to get where she is today (pre-trial, that is)?

It is my belief that she capitalized on society's desire to keep women both in the kitchen and (woohoo!) outside, in the garden. Sure, men watch Martha Stewart. But in the numbers that women do? No. To sell items at K-Mart she sold the very women that she should've stood up for.

More importantly, a feeling in my gut tells me that she has stepped over whomever it took to climb to the top of her Ivory Tower.

Bitterness? Yeah, I'm bitter, but not only against Martha. Against any character without the spine to consider that others lives can be greatly impacted by the actions in their own. I can name more than a handful of males with worse impact than Martha's $51,000 save. Yet they, somehow, manage to go unharmed.

And therein lies the core of my bitterness. Although I feel Martha should get what she deserves, plenty more fat cats in Corporate America should expect the same possible return for their actions. If many of them (not specifically referring to Martha here) can drop countless employees to make their company more agile/lean, on whims, then their jobs should be every bit as at risk.

Update: Exactly.

If I'm missing the point — as it goes with my opinions of Ms. Stewart — please fill me in.

Thursday, 2004-03-04

state of hold

I've been put on hold all too frequently in the past couple weeks. Right now I'm on hold to get parts for my VPR Matrix (the one that took a dive). And for possibly the millionth (exaggeration) time I'm in a "New York State of Mind" or at least listening to said track from Billy Joel.

Every business — maybe they all outsource to the same call center operations company — seems to use this particular song for hold music. It's sadly starting to grow on me.