Thursday, December 16, 2010


There really is still some blocklogic going on, even if they aren`t showing off much. Toasters and squid seem to have the front burner lately. They`ve even spawned a pair of blocks, displayed on the twelve faces of the stealated octahedron bellow. The inflatable origami ornament below was patterned on a single sheet steella-octangula designed by Sam Ciulla, mine was assembled with the the instructions on this pdf.

I remember now why I haven`t done many of these. Start with the image face up, already cut out square, and in just 18 steps voilà. I thought this would be cute, it`s almost easier to carve one (damn). They were a little time consuming to make but so were the blocks their images came from. After tuning up the squid ball I made two more "Jingle Bones" and "Tribe Ball," they`re at Blocklogic. I`m considering  two more, "Breakfast With Badgers," and "The West." 

Monday, November 8, 2010


 The rolltop desk is still giving up it`s treasures. Man, how many cuby-holes can one desk have? I`ve found a whole pile of mint tins and those round, flat, snuf cans, all stuffed full of wrinkly, old, scraps of paper, covered with poems. And not just poems but ones made up on the road and dragged all over before they ended up here. I`m sure some of them go with the stories, but which ones goes with which I`m not sure I`ll ever figure out. These seem even more personal than the stories and at first I was a little embarrassed to be draggin em all out, but this is my story. I don`t have to like it, but it feels like I should at least give it a chance.

   I may come back to them later, but for now I`m only going to share my favorite one.

I met a man while walking,
he was being enigmatic.
But I was beaming clear and pure
ignoring all the static.

Then he sang an invocation
in a voice so clear and high,
"May the guides always be with you
and I hope you never die."

Friday, October 29, 2010


In memory of the non-starter comic strip "Huérfano Calcetines." Fortunately for us here in Flatware County, the situation for orphan spoons and other partial place-setting, flatware isn`t near as grim as the future for lost socks. We can find their familys. Replacements Ltd. has a collection of 13.8 million pieces of china, crystal, silver, and yes stainless steel tableware. With 455,800 square feet (seven football fields) filled with over 340,000 indexed patterns, their collection of replacement pieces may very well be the largest in the world. 
Playing around their list of flatware I discovered that individual pieces have photo`s attached to their listings, and the list is huge. They even have a pattern identifacation service, don't know your pattern's name? Email a picture of your pattern to As yet I haven`t found any references to the weights of pieces on their site, but  Gary Hovey`s contribution to the flatware benchmark collection is that one cubic foot of assorted stainless steel flatware weighs right at 100 lbs.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


   At last, living in my own stilty little cabin (Silver Drawer) again is so good I can hardly explain it. I don`t remember it being so spacious, and I`m really glad I have a good step-ladder because the contents of my cabinets are still a bit of a scavenger hunt. Well I`ve  gotten used to the one`s I can reach anyway, and while I may not have two full place-settings that match it turns out I have a lot of flatware! Ok, it`s not that bigga surprise. Everybody knows that the Lake House-Silver Drawer has always been the preferred final destination for odd, interesting, one-of-a-kind, or aging flatware.

  Well, digging through my desk has been more fun than finding money in old clothes. Most of this stuff seems at least vaguely familiar, but there have been a few real surprises. The smörgåsbord hidden in this old roll-top has already yielded, The Flatware County Diet, and The Flatware County Diet Weight Converter, and I`m still on my first helping. The converter, made by Yuki Orange, has had me chuckling ever since I ran across it. The converter is meant to be an accessory to the Flatware County Diet Game. The still incomplete game-board for The Flatware County Diet Game (above) was first seen in the article "Fat Bottom Feels Pinch" back in November, 2008.The complete rules for The Flatware County Diet Game and a more polished version of the game-board are still holding on top of the things to finish next pile, but I`ve been playing with the converter a lot and it still tickles me.

 I`m pretty sure I never gained this much weight, this fast, even in my first childhood. I`m growing faster than a seal-pup, yeah that`s right, put that club away Buddy. Food tastes amazing and the vitamins Aqua-Vs got me on have me picking up a couple or three place-settings a week. At this rate, next family reunion I won`t have to borrow any at all. Hell, bring the marching band too, what the heck we can use paper plates. What`s a few hundred more spoons between friends?

Thursday, October 7, 2010


   I`d have run out of vacation days by now if my accountant hadn`t said, "Write some more stories, and we can expense at least some of these pediatrician visits." Great, throw that up in my face. At least I don`t need help climbing up in my chair anymore. Being a baby sucked, yeah I said it, but I wish I could remember more of it. About the first thing I remember was being read to, and soon after that starting to read myself. The pages were huge, and even though I loved being read to, I loved bringing the stories inside. Just being alone with the stories in my head was so comforting.

   I`ve been told I was a pushy baby. Apparently the only rest anybody got was when I was exhausted, asleep, or listening to Sidual or Aqua V read to me. Little did I know, most of what I was fascinated by were my own rambling recitations from a few weeks earlier in my "declining years." Reading Sidual`s worn notes was like remembering a dream, and more and more I already knew the endings. I suppose I should count myself lucky, having twice crossed the Rubicon, to find even traces of my memories and dreams. This one begins like a lot of my favorite stories , with a wake up.

   I waited for those damn billy-goats all night, not. The only Trolling I`m into takes a string, a feather with a jingle bell, and a bicycle (trolling for kittens). All I ever got were nibbles anyway, kittens can`t keep up with a bicycle long.

   I woke up under a bridge, even then I didn`t know where. I was a little hungry and broke, but I did have my tooth-brush, and I really wanted to wash my face. It didn`t take long to break camp, and find a gas station. With a clean face and hands, I had just about finished brushing my teefs when someone walked in and past me. His business was brief and as I was drying my hands, he was washing his. I nodded his direction. "Mornin", he said. "Good morning", I replied as I turned to leave. "Hey, ya feel like smoking a joint?" he asked. "I reckon," I replied as we exited to the side parking lot. On the way to his car, he introduced himself. "My friends call me Monster," he said. WE shook hands and got in his car. He was parked in the shade and the joint turned out to be a foot-tall glass bong with a Mucca looking girl floating amongst her draperies and very animated hair on it`s side. He started the car, and as we drove around I told him about the odd dream pair of dreams I`d just had under the bridge.

   In the first dream I was walking a couple of friends to the airport in Los Angeles. We were walking along the bottom of a narrow canyon. Up on the sloped sides blond masons in ironed Egyptian looking white loin-cloths were cutting cubes of stone right out of the canyon wall (there were several cube shaped holes near them), and carrying them off the same way we were going. We had just rounded a bend in the canyon, when we encountered the mason`s and their nearly completed wall. Just beyond the gap in the mason`s wall was a guard and a red and white striped guard shack with a counter-weighted striped barrier swung down blocking the way to the airport.

   There was a guard in fatigues standing behind the red and white stripped barrier. He held up his open hand and said, "If you want to go any farther you`ll have to put one of these green outfits, and reached over the barrier to hand us some. It doesn`t mean anything it`s just a green suit", but we could see farther up the canyon. Guys in green uniforms wearing smokey the bear hats were shoving people in green suits into lines and shouting at them. These obviously weren`t soldiers, but apparently that didn`t matter! "Don`t do it" I said, "It`s a trick, if we`re meant to fly there`ll be another way," and we started back the way we came. The masons were still hard at it, and the wall had grown some while we`d been delayed.

   As we rounded the turn we could see a small white jet flying down the canyon toward us, laying down a cloud of green gas. The masons were apparently unconcerned, as they continued to remove blocks from the canyon wall and carry then back where we`d just been. My friends and several other people headed for the airport had run over to a white hatchback car. Every time some crawled into the back seat they came back out wearing a gas mask. I hurried over and climbed in myself and reached for a gas-mask. There was only one left. "How do you share a gas-mask," I thought. Just then someone reached past me and got the gas-mask. When they pulled back there was still one mask left. I put it on and got out of the car. Everyone who wanted a mask had one. The masons had ignored the entire event and continued to close the canyon.

  The next thing I knew I was walking up a tightly curved interstate on-ramp wearing a back-pack. I came to a fallen aluminum light pole, and hopped up on the fat end of it. I continued up the pole balancing for fun till the metal began to dent in easily near the top. I hopped down, and woke up under a bridge.

  Monster said,"Uh Huh, loincloths, trowels, and masons with long blond hair, sounds like a California dream to me. Then he told me about his dream, "One night I went to sleep and woke up in heaven. Maybe I died, Maybe I didn`t. I just knew I was there, and I knew I could stay. I also knew that there was one thing left for me to do. There was a large hill in front of me. I knew that if I climbed it, when I reached the top, I would be one with the presence of the living God and totally aware of it."

   He said, "This seemed like a great idea, and I started up the hill immediately. On the way up the hill I noticed there were a lot of people on their way up too. This seemed right as well. Soon I noticed that I felt a little better every step I took. This wasn`t a big surprise either, I knew what was at the top."

   But then he saw something that startled him. Monster said, "One of the people climbing the hill with me stopped suddenly, then turned around and started down the hill again! Monster thought, "Whoa, maybe he realized he wasn`t ready yet. That`s ok I`m ready," and Monster continued up the hill. "I felt better than I ever had, and it seemed like every step I felt even better. This is great," Monster said as he stopped, "I`ll go back and bring everybody," and he started back down the hill.

   As with the 1803 experiment of Thomas Young referred to in "The Dancing Wu Lee Masters" by Gary Zukov (pages 60-63...), the addition of another path doesn`t necessarily add only one more alternative destination. How could this happen? How does the photon know there are two slits? How does the information  about what is happening everywhere get collected to determine what is likely to happen here?

   "Every question takes a certain description of reality for granted. Every question makes a statement that is either true or false," Hugh Prather  "A Book Of Games A Course In Spiritual Play."

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


It`s not like they were a secret anyway, but Mineral Comix, Buffalo Mao #47 till now has been a rather rare item with less than twenty copies currently in existance. This seems unfortunate since the whole reason for making it in the first place was to share the fun of arithmetic, Flatware County style. The whole Arithmetic Block project has been languishing of late. It`s been a busy summer, Sidual and Aquavelveta have been taking up the slack sorta. They`ve changed the diapers, watered the plants, and watched lots of movies on Netflix. Meanwhile back at Mineral Comix we`v been listening to the crickets and waiting for the arithmetic crystals necessary to get somebody to cut some more dovetailed boxes. Our current chalenge is that we burned up the vacume cleaner and got tired of having an apartment full of sawdust. Hell we never were going to be able to make that many sets-o blocks here anyway. BP (that`s Buttry Pone, Flatware County`s County Engineer) has had his hands full just drilling relief wells and clearing away the partially crushed Nook/Sideboard trolley, and the wreckage of the Hms De Haviland. With the ice mostly cleared away and the Adipose once again flowing thick and dark, at least the prospects for the annual biscuit races and this fall`s Gravy Boat Hayride are looking good. While we`re gald to hear the Hayrides back on the folks at BlockLogic are antsy to get the Arithmetic Blocks-a-flowin too.

The pages shown in this article are the press proofs (inside and outside) for the cover of Mineral Comix, Buffalo Mao#47. These and the 16 others to be released starting tomorrow, signal Mineral Comix decision to open source Buffalo Mao#47. The release of the the proofs for the four and a quarter inch square booklet will be followed by the 6 proof pages for the shirt pocket sized, two and seven eighths inch version. Their stated goal is to make the booklets available in time for block-sets being made to be given this Christmas .

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I was ignorant of the entire "velina" debacle till I found "Videocracy" on Netflix. By way of heating up the story, Erik Gandinni`s documentary "Videocracy" pokes an unerring finger in the eye of misogynistic media hog, dictator wannabe Slobidan Berlusconi. The systematic marginalizing of women and the deification of wealth and privilege are emblematic of his régime. I jump quickly to Mr Burlusconi`s side and thank him for the reminder that, " Like your chickens, your freedom will wander off if you don`t pay attention to it."

If I understood it correctly, "Videocracy" points out that Rev Burrlesqoni owns or controls 90 percent of Italy`s television stations. What a treasure. I can`t help but notice what a bright and discerning bunch he seems to be influencing. I`m kinda glad "they stand together." It makes them easier to identify and frees up a lot of band-width besides. Please don`t throw us in the briar patch Brer Bearlusconi. Oh wait, that`s where the black-berries are. I bet that guy hates the internet. Yeah, and watch out fer them feral chickens. They`re libel ta bite you in the ass.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


"The birth spasm has begun." Standing ankle deep in our success, Prymaat`s pithy observation brings home the nature of our own somewhat slower unfurling expansion.

Obtuse Cinema has already begun with reviews and clips for several of the odder, more interesting films I`ve watched recently. The list device "Obtuse Cinema`s The Week`s Best Flix Picks" will hold five of the films I`ve liked most lately, and on slow weeks some of my other odd favorites. The new blog will include clips, stills, reviews, and, or trailers for the ones on the list. I`ll also be mentioning some of the ones I didn`t like quite as well. If I hate em I probably wont bother. Anyway, the red envelope has arrived, maybe the Directors mom didn`t write this synopsis.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


We had to take Cousin O D along, he was the only one who could keep his laptop from floating away, damn Why-Fly. None of our maps were much good. The glaciers had scraped away most of the roads, and the amazingly fast growing trees seemed to be finishing off the rest in short order. It was a good thing Chatty had driven a company car up there.

It was nearly noon before we found Chatty`s car. Sidual was standing on it. The grass had grown all the way over it. The turf mat wasn`t all that thick, but the grass was over a foot tall on top of it. We could`ve saved our time hacking a way into the car. It was one icky mold palace. I guess Chatty thought he`d be right back. Two of the windows were open. Sidual tried the door and jumped back muttering, "This is nuts." The door was totally stuck. From the smells and growls it was apparent something was living in there. We bailed. I doubt his luggage would have told us anything much in its current state.

According to OD`s laptop, GPS put the phone right where we were right next to the bridge. Fat chance, but OD pushed his way into the brush following his laptop. Sidual with a machete is something I wish I could forget. I guess it could`ve been worse. The brush wasn`t as thick as it looked. There were several large patches of pavement and even a speed limit sign near the drop off. Chatty was no help. He lost his shoes somewhere before we got down to the water. There was no bridge in our crumbly little canyon. I tried Chatty`s cellphone number. We stood still and listened, and heard nothing but birds, and water. "Shh," I said and called again. I thought I could hear his Godzilla ring tone coming from down stream.

"Keep an eye on Chatty and see if you can find something to get a sample of this water in," I told Sidual. I found the cellphone in a sand-bar. Getting it out was a little tricky though. I wasn`t about to step in that water. I`d all ready seen way too much of Chatty. Nobody likes old jello.

I heard a commotion from up-stream. Leaning around the bushes, I saw Chatty coming downstream in a wash tub with Sidual hot on his heels. "Grab him," Sidual shouted. But hell, he was already passing me. Still holding his cellphone, I did manage to get his picture just before he ran aground on the sand bar. Sidual fished him out, and we beat a hasty retreat.

Damn, Sidual looks twenty. Oh he`s tickled. He was really tired of acne, and I think he`s taller too. I hope we can get this straightened out before his mom gets home. Great, in the meantime Chatty has gone from starry eyed mumbler, to sticky faced toddler in the space of two days, and we`re left bringing him home naked again.

Sunday, July 4, 2010


Chatty misses the sheep. He`s taken to sudden, numerous naps, but when he`s awake he`s talking non-stop. Short straw or not it`s still my story. Sidual and I are writing as fast as we can, but instead of an explanation, we`re generating piles of rambling stories.

It`s a good thing Kevin forwarded us those pictures and text messages. Chatty`s weekend odyssey is starting to take shape, and what a shape?

The glacier carving through the Chocolate Hills behind him isn`t on any of our maps. We gathered from the texts that he was going home for Father`s Day. So How did his face end up on that temple? What temple, and how big is that chicken anyway? The few details found in the texts don`t reveal who took the pictures, and yet we found more hints in them than in the mounds of transcriptions.

Sitting on the floor sorting through piles and boxes of notes, Sidual looked forlorn. He complained desperately, "This is worse than trying to follow a drunken rabbit in a rainstorm with a bloodhound. Can`t we just backtrack the GPS from his car or phone?" "You know what this means," I said? "Road Trip!"

Saturday, June 19, 2010

"Catar Pulgas Num Leão"

I stand in the water on feet of clay. Walking alone across Alligator Alley one night, I was listening for alligators, hissing, dragging, maybe that deep rumbling roar. I didn`t expect to meet anyone.

Hell I can`t see my feet. The same cars lighting my way are also blinding me and hiding all the small sounds. With bare feet and empty pockets, I keep walking, not because I have a destination, I`m just scared to stop. The grass is almost to my knees. So it`s a good thing I have no luggage. Unless I get a ride I`ll be walking all night. The cars are going by fast and way too often for me to walk on the road. I`m walking as fast as I dare, so nothing will crawl up my leg. I`ve walked in the swamp before, it sucks (yer shoes off) and that`s in the daylight. I see someone coming the other way, featureless black, back-lit again and again by the cars, and now from one behind me, I can almost see a face.

We sat in the grass facing each other close enough to hear, far enough away to watch behind each other carefully. "I`ve walked this way before," he said. "It wasn`t far from here that I heard the water. I followed a mostly overgrown dirt road to pool of water with an oil well Christmas-tree out in the middle of it." It looked impossibly old. Water poured from the numerous large cracks. Unlike the somewhat fragrant swamp water, the water flowing from the pool was fresh, clean looking. He claimed the surrounding vegetation was smallish but healthy looking. On a whim he took off his glasses and washed his face in the pool. He said it felt so good he decided to have a drink.

As I sat there in the tall grass talking to a shadow, I thought, "Enjoy it, this is probably the only rest you`ll get tonight." Despite my many questions, I listened quietly as he continued,"I went down in the Keys and got a job cleaning fish at a bait store and began work on a sail boat built with no numbers." Yeah, I let that slide too, interesting yarn is way better than no yarn at all, and at least he wasn`t smelly (today). He told me the job wasn`t great but he enjoyed fooling around with the boat. He said after a while he wasn`t needing his glasses as much, and was generally feeling better than he had in years.

Even with someone watching my back, I was uneasy sitting in tall grass in the dark this close to the swamp. We`d lucked out some though. The breeze was strong enough to keep the skeeters from clouding around us. He mentioned Ponce DeLeon, and how cold and clean the water had been. He said, "During the Ice Age all of North America was covered with ice thousands of feet deep. The moving ice generated pressure and heat enough to keep some of the water at the surface liquid, and under enough pressure to drive that same water deep into the ground. Some of this water had been frozen for millions of years, its biological clock slowed or stopped, and then sequestered deep in the earth till geologic forces or in this case oil exploration brought it back to the surface."

Cool, we`d been sitting there quite for a while when he pointed at the silhouette of the cement plant not too far back the way he`d come."There`s a bucket with some canned food and an opener next to a post about hundred feet out a dirt road just this side-o the main entrance and you`re welcome to it," he said. I wasn`t really hungry, but I thanked him anyway. I was craving my own company so I got up to head on. "Yeah," he said, "I`m done with tha Keys; you stop by the bait store an tell 'em I sent ya. It ain't much of a boat but you`re welcome to it too," he added, and we went our separate ways.

It was a good ways to the cement plant, and, I gotta say I was pretty curious to see if the food was really there. Twenty minutes walking up and down the dirt roads on either side of the plant revealed no cans or bucket. Not too surprising, still it was a good story and the night`s walk was stretching out pretty long ahead of me. What tha hey, I struck out, watching the grass and listening for falling water (among other things). I walked all night, but I never saw a gator nor did I hear any falling water. It was a couple of days before I got down to the Keys. Nobody at the bait store he mentioned seemed to have heard of him.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Mineral Comix and Buffalo Mao#47 have burst upon Flatware County riding a wave of revelation and controversy. Not unlike the tide in Banda Achi, a ground swell of consternation and surprise continues to build and swirl around Mineral Comix' recent release of more than a dozen heirloom archival photographs. For many this is the first glimpse of the Flatware County of the early 1800s. Too long lost in the gathering mists of forgetfulness, the world revealed in these recently rediscovered photos is both startling and familiar. Like the mighty herds of lope and whiffelo that once thundered across pre-settlement Flatware County, the stories and names associated with these photos were fading away, blurring like the echoes of a passing storm.

Page 13 of Buffalo Mao #47 deals specifically with proportionality. The photograph facing it contains what we believe to be the only existing photo of Roswell`s UFO. Only slightly more than half of it is revealed in this camp scene and we`re not sure of the date. This Photo of Custer and his dog Roswell has been at the center of a great deal of speculation. As revealed in this photograph, on occasion Roswell has been known to change size in relation with objects near him. Sometimes objects and even people in his immediate vicinity have been caught up in these transformations. There has been speculation that continued exposure to the "Roswell Effect" may have permanently affected Custer`s perception of relative size and occasionally even position. The offshoot of these changes were subtle, occasionally stepping above the top step, or releasing his coat just below the hook. Unfortunately, in the long run these perceptual changes proved more dangerous than anyone expected.

When Roswell arrived in New Mexico or how long he stayed, we have been unable to determine, however, his presence in Flatware County has been obvious since the mid 1800`s. The effects of his visits here are numerous and long term. There has been a lot of buzz lately about the petition circulating in Lake House to have him canonized as St Roswell, yeah.
Time will tell.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Hotpockalypse, Now?

Alright, this is the first scoop I`ve had in a while. A quick though discrete search of my most reliable sources hasn`t come up with the release date or even the directors name, though Angelina Anyway assured me the premier was well attended. To the best of our knowledge this, his third movie, is Jim Gaffigans first staring role. To Quote Miz Anyway, " Gaffigan`s haunting portrayal of the despotic Col Kurtz was unexpectedly natural. Squatted gazing into a roaring fire masticating vacantly on his Hotpocket as the sweat poured off his green and black face, he seemed oblivious to the clouds of insects swirling like a nimbus around his head." Hardly a saintly figure on the set, the enraged Gaffigan is said to have thrown an over-warmed hotpocket at one of the grips, who subsequently filed a grievance with his union rep. Angelina doesn`t buy it.

Aside from Miz Anyway`s glowing review and the reproduction of one of the posters above, this reporter hasn`t been able to find out much about this closet classic.
............Aquavelveta..........Arts and Entertainment