Saturday, April 24, 2010

WE’RE BACK AND BETTER FOR THE BREAK (And with extra good stuff)


The marijuana growers of Northern California continue to whine how a majority vote to legalize reefer will destroy their local economy.

“Everyone knows someone who grows pot. In the north county, indoor growing that fetches prices of over $3,000 per pound is popular, while in the south, marijuana is planted outdoors. The industry has also fueled an itinerant labor force of "trimmers" who make $20 per hour or more snipping the leaves from the more potent dried buds of the plant. "This vote has become a conflict of interest," said Deniz Farnell, 31, an Arcata hotel worker, who, like the vast majority of locals, supports decriminalizing pot smoking. "Do you vote for the good of the state or for the next-door neighbor who's a mom who's supplementing her income through trimming? When that law passes, she'll be on food stamps."That is because legalizing marijuana could turn a cottage industry into Pot Inc. Locals fear big tobacco will swoop in and drive down prices, supplying millions of new, legal pot smokers with "Marlboro Green." Rumors abound in Arcata that the tobacco giants have already snatched up land and copyrights to the most popular names of weed strains, whether Purple Kush, Big Bud, Headband, Trainwreck or L.A. Confidential. But at least one big tobacco company, Reynolds American, says it has no plans to move in. "Everything else would be purely rumors and speculation," said spokesman David Howard. "We better hope it doesn't become legal because this area is going to become a ghost town," one reader wrote to the North Coast Journal in a response to a recent article on how to stay afloat in the post-illegal pot era. The Tax Cannabis campaign has gained traction in the cash-strapped state of California, historically at the forefront of contentious social issues. It led the nation in 1996 by approving the use of cannabis for medical purposes. An April 2009 Field Poll showed 56 percent of state voters supported legalizing pot for social use and taxing the sales. On a statewide level, that could bring in $1.4 billion per year, according to the office that regulates sales tax. "Think of all the pot smokers out there," said a mid-30s mom who has grown for six years, plans to enter law school, and favors legalization. "They can bail California out of its deficit. Smoke more pot!" Under the initiative, possession and cultivation of small amounts of pot for personal use would be legal for those 21 and over. The measure allows municipalities to determine how to tax and regulate the drug — with monies going to local governments — and does not affect medical marijuana laws. Pot is illegal under U.S. law but the Obama administration halted raids on medical marijuana clinics last year. It is unclear how state legalization would be affected by federal law, and whether the U.S. government would interfere.” (Click here for more)

Click here for Afroman

The secret hyphenation is Self-Interest


Our good friends Mother and Doctor at the Bangalore Film Society – knowing that at Doc40 we have something of a Tombstone fixation – forwarded the following. (And this time we resisted using a picture of Val Kilmer as Doc Holliday.)

“A missing handwritten transcript from a coroner's inquest held after the legendary gunfight at the OK Corral has resurfaced in a dusty box more than 125 years after the most famous shootout in the history of the Wild West. The document, which had been missing since it was photocopied in the 1960s, was found when court clerks stumbled on the box while reorganising files in an old jail storage room in Bisbee, south of Tombstone, the Arizona frontier town where the gunbattle took place. Stuffed inside the box was a modern manila envelope marked "keep" with the date 1881.The inquest was carried out after lawmen Wyatt Earp, his two brothers and Doc Holliday confronted a gang of drunken outlaws, sparking a 30-second gunbattle in the streets of Tombstone that killed Frank and Tom McLaury and Bill Clanton. It made folk heroes of Earp and Holliday and inspired numerous movies about the untamed Old West. Officials showed off just one page of the transcript on Wednesday – a thick sheet of paper with blue lines and sloppy cursive writing in dark ink. It appeared to contain the beginning of testimony by William Claiborn, identified by a historian as a friend of the three dead outlaws. "I was present on the afternoon of Oct. 26th '81 when the shooting commenced between outlaw parties," the testimony reads. Court officials have turned the document over to state archivists. Experts will immediately begin peeling away tape, restoring the paper and ink, and digitising the pages.” Click here for more


Our good pal Skylaire Alfvegren has posted a succinct profile of Charles Fort on the LOWFI website.

“There is a man, largely undiscovered by the modern world, whom I, and many others, believe made one of the most significant contributions to the world of science. Had it not been that he vehemently opposed modern scientists and their methods, his work might be enjoying a greater popularity than it does. Had this man decided to write about completely different topics, he would be hailed as a fabulous literary character. Here was a peculiar fellow. Charles Fort devoted 26 years of his life to compiling documented reports of scientific anomalies from journals and newspapers from all around the world. He lived in dire poverty so that truth could prevail. His life's work may one day be of great scientific worth, should the established scientific community ever muster the courage to approach it.” (Click here for the whole thing.)


Our pal Roldo has posted his own edit of the Georges Melies 1902 FILM Le Voyage Dans La Lune. Click here to check it out.




Friday, April 23, 2010

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Just to demonstrate how out of touch with the world at large I seem able to become, I wasn’t aware that this was the most watched video clip on the whole, entire, world-wide, god-forsaken planet until the Anomaly Man clued me in. Damn. We really are living in a science fiction movie and the R’lyeh Redlight Deadly Fetish Funzone is coming back at us. Click here if you haven’t seen it either.

The secret word is Hermit


I know we all love Blinky, but this shit is getting serious.

“More than 80% of the male bass fish in Washington's major river are now exhibiting female traits such as egg production because of a "toxic stew" of pollutants, scientists and campaigners reported yesterday. Intersex fish probably result from drugs, such as the contraceptive pill, and other chemicals being flushed into the water and have been found right across the US. The Potomac Conservancy, which focuses on Washington DC's river, called for new research to determine what was causing male smallmouth bass to carry immature eggs in their testes. "We have not been able to identify one particular chemical or one particular source," said Vicki Blazer, a fish biologist with the US geological survey. "We are still trying to get a handle on what chemicals are important." But she said early evidence pointed to a mix of chemicals – commonly used at home as well as those used in large-scale farming operations – causing the deformities. The suspect chemicals mimic natural hormones and disrupt the endocrine system, with young fish being particularly susceptible. The chemicals could include birth control pills and other drugs, toiletries especially those with fragrances, products such as tissues treated with antibacterial agents, or goods treated with flame retardants that find their way into waste water. However, Blazer also pointed to runoff from fertilisers and pesticides from agricultural areas.” (Click here for more)

Click here for Kay Kyser


"Volcanoes erupt all the time, all over the world, but truly 'big-ass' ones are rare. If they weren't - well, we probably wouldn't be around to worry about global warming. The anthropologist Stanley Ambrose has argued that a supervolcanic explosion at Lake Toba on Sumatra, roughly seventy thousand years ago, blocked the sun so badly that it triggered an ice age that nearly wiped out Homo sapiens. What distinguishes a big-ass volcano isn't just how much stuff it ejaculates, but where the ejaculate goes. The typical volcano sends sulfur dioxide into the troposphere, the atmospheric layer closest to the earth's surface. This is similar to what a coal-burning power plant does with its sulfur emissions. In both cases, the gas stays in the sky only a week or so before falling back to the ground as acid rain, generally within a few hundred miles of its origin. But a big volcano shoots sulfur dioxide far higher, into the stratosphere. That's the layer that begins at about seven miles above the earth's surface, or six miles at the poles. Above that threshold altitude, there is a drastic change in a variety of atmospheric phenomena. The sulfur dioxide, rather than quickly returning to the earth's surface, absorbs stratospheric water vapor and forms an aerosol cloud that circulates rapidly, blanketing most of the globe. In the stratosphere, sulfur dioxide can linger for a year or more, and will thereby affect the global climate.” – Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner – Superfreakonomics

Click here for Jimi


And talking of pink things…


Wednesday, April 21, 2010


(Actually I think this is last year’s Supreme Court, but do any of you really care?)

Kiddie porn is rightly outlawed. But we are permitted to amuse ourselves with images of small furry animals being tortured and murdered. The Supreme Court just said so…

“The Supreme Court on Tuesday forcefully struck down a federal law aimed at banning depictions of dog fighting and other violence against animals, saying it violated constitutional guarantees of free speech and created a "criminal prohibition of alarming breadth." The 8 to 1 ruling, written by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., was a ringing endorsement of the First Amendment's protection of even distasteful expression. Roberts called "startling and dangerous" the government's argument that the value of certain categories of speech should be weighed against their societal costs when protecting free speech. The law was enacted in 1999 to forbid sales of so-called crush videos. They appeal to a certain sexual fetish by depicting the torture of animals -- cats, dogs, monkeys, mice and hamsters, according to Congress -- or showing them being crushed to death by women wearing stiletto heels or with their bare feet. While dog-fighting and other forms of animal cruelty are already illegal, Congress said the legislation was necessary to stop the production of videos for commercial gain. But the government has not used the law to prosecute any producer of a crush video. Instead, the case before the court, United States v. Stevens, involves Robert Stevens of Pittsville, Va., who was sentenced to three years in prison for making videos of pit bulls fighting. An appeals court overturned the conviction when it ruled the law was unconstitutional.” (Click here for more.)

Click here for The Cramps

The secret word is Shame


(Image provided by Valerie.)


The website Hilobrow has a fine retrospective on Jack Kirby…

“Having helped pioneer the comic-book version of Golden Age science fiction, in the mid-1960s Kirby helped pioneer the comic-book version of New Wave science fiction. New Wave SF is characterized by an ambitious, self-consciously artistic sensibility; in fiction, the movement took off in 1964, when Michael Moorcock took over the editorship of the British science fiction magazine New Worlds. New Wave science fiction was less interested in outer space than in the nature of perception, mass media, entropy, and politics. Precisely at this moment, Kirby's Marvel comics began to blow minds with their experimentations in form and content; and - once he moved back to DC - he explored perception, mass media, entropy, and politics in his writings. Kirby's proto-psychedelic photomontages were first seen in '64, which helps demonstrate my theory that the Sixties began that year; and his proto-psychedelic energy fields, known to fans as the "Kirby Krackle," were first seen in '66. He also co-scripted and drew the Argonaut Folly superhero comic series The Inhumans (1965). If The Avengers (1963), and The X-Men are examples of work on the cusp between the comic-book science fiction's Golden Age and New Wave eras, The Inhumans is New Wave.” (Click here for the whole thing.)


(Published in a short lived mag called Spirit World.)

Click here for Roy



Tuesday, April 20, 2010




Click here for The Deviants
Click here for Jim

The secret phrase is A Thousand Words


Malachi Frozdick was very worried about volcanic ash.
(Image from the mighty Valerie)


The Brit Daily Telegraph tells us…

“HARDCORE fans of The Beatles legend John Lennon uncovered where in the grounds of his Surrey, southern England, home he hid his stash of LSD more than 40 years ago. Builders digging up the lawn of his old house, Kenwood, came across the remains of a leather holdall containing several large broken glass bottles. Legend has it that Lennon buried a large quantity of the drug in his garden in 1967 when The Beatles declared they had given up drugs in favour of transcendental meditation. But when the band returned from India, John decided he had been a bit hasty and tried to dig it up - but never found it. Now fans are convinced these bottles contained the missing treasure - though they will never know for sure as the one bottle found intact had a cracked cork, so it was empty.”

Click here for Lucy


Monday, April 19, 2010


I guess dire speculation that this Icelandic eruption would bring more than disrupted air travel and glorious sunsets was inevitable. (And, in LA, we nervously await our possible share of all this seismic activity.)

“The last time Eyjafjallajökull (pronounced ay-yah-FYAH-plah-yer-kuh-duhl, according to the Associated Press) began spewing ash and lava, in 1821, it went on until 1823. In one significant episode in Iceland, the Laki volcano erupted in 1783, sending massive amounts of lava, ash and poisonous gases into the air for eight months. Much larger than Eyjafjallajökull's eruption, the Laki blast killed half of Iceland's livestock and triggered a famine that, along with fluorine poisoning, killed one-quarter of Iceland's population. The ash and gases released caused extreme weather across Europe and contributed to a continent-wide rise in deaths from respiratory diseases. If this eruption lasts anywhere near that long, scientists say, there is a risk it could melt glaciers that now cap the nearby Katla volcano, allowing it to blow its top and potentially pump enough ash into the atmosphere to lower temperatures worldwide. The good news is that despite the difficulties caused for air traffic and commerce, volcanologists at this point don't seem overly worried about the chances that the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull will have long-term repercussions for climate or health.” (Click here for more – much more.)

Click here for REM (what else?)


"By placing an order via this Web site on the first day of the fourth month of the year 2010 Anno Domini, you agree to grant Us a non transferable option to claim, for now and for ever more, your immortal soul. Should We wish to exercise this option, you agree to surrender your immortal soul, and any claim you may have on it, within 5 (five) working days of receiving written notification from or one of its duly authorised minions."

Our valued pal UK Steve sent us the story of how the Brit chain of video game retail stores GameStation inserted the above clause into their terms and conditions earlier this month grantong them legal rights to the immortal souls of thousands of their online customers. (As a gag we hasten to add.) They further specified that they might serve such notice in “six foot-high letters of fire” too, but also offered customers an chance to opt out, rewarding them with a £5 money-off voucher if they did. Alas, hardly anyone noticed the clause, let alone the bonus for spotting the jest. According to GameStation, around 7,500 customers carelessly signed their souls away. (Click here for Yahoo report.)

Click here for Dead Weather

The secret word is Lucifer


So die all unbelievers. Not.

“When a famous tantric guru boasted on television that he could kill another man using only his mystical powers, most viewers either gasped in awe or merely nodded unquestioningly. Sanal Edamaruku’s response was different. “Go on then — kill me,” he said. Mr Edamaruku had been invited to the same talk show as head of the Indian Rationalists’ Association — the country’s self-appointed sceptic-in-chief. At first the holy man, Pandit Surender Sharma, was reluctant, but eventually he agreed to perform a series of rituals designed to kill Mr Edamaruku live on television. Millions tuned in as the channel cancelled scheduled programming to continue broadcasting the showdown. First, the master chanted mantras, then he sprinkled water on his intended victim. He brandished a knife, ruffled the sceptic’s hair and pressed his temples. But after several hours of similar antics, Mr Edamaruku was still very much alive — smiling for the cameras and taunting the furious holy man. “He was over, finished, completely destroyed!” Mr Edamaruku chuckles triumphantly as he concludes the tale in the Rationalist Centre, his second-floor office in the town of Noida, just outside Delhi.” (Click here for more)


The infinitely valued Valerie brings this to our attention.

“It is early in the morning at the Amitabha Drukpa Nunnery on a hillside just outside Kathmandu and hundreds of devotees are walking clockwise around a golden statue of Buddha. But rather than being immersed in prayer, up on the roof something different is happening - they are practising the same kung fu fighting made famous by the Bruce Lee films of the 1970s. Young Buddhist nuns from the 800-year-old Drukpa Buddhist sect are being taught by their Vietnamese master. The martial art was introduced to the nunnery two years ago and the nuns practise up to two hours a day. Rupa Lama, a 16-year-old nun from India, says kung fu helps her concentrate. "It's good for our health. Meditation is very difficult and if we do kung fu, then afterwards meditation becomes much easier," she says.” (Click here for more)


Click here for a fragment of a film made by Kit Lambert and Chris Stamp that shows a very early incarnation of The Who.



Sunday, April 18, 2010


The unpleasant truth is that a majority of us – back in our youth when we were bold, cute, uppity, and stupid – had moments of grisly fun with NyQuil, Night Nurse, and other packaged, over-the-counter, numb-mind potions and products that usually involved some combo of Dextromethorphan, Doxylamine and Doxylamine, maybe cocktailed up with some form of Pseudoephedrine. Hell, Lester Bangs as good as died from a recreational diet the stuff, and it didn’t do Elvis too much good either. But now these guys who call themselves Hot Knives have come up with an organic version that is probably a good deal less damaging and maybe a bunch more fun.

"As much as you'll hear us brag that we never fall ill (largely due to copious amounts of garlic, onions and vitamin C) we do -- once in a blue moon -- get sick. And yes, we have chased the green dragon. NyQuil, DayQuil, other sorts of new fangled drugstore opiates in their generic versions. We will fess up. The stuff works! But not this year. When one of us woke up last week with a throat tickle that blossomed into a gnarly case of the flu, we took it on with fresh produce, organic sweeteners and thimbles of liquor. In place of Acetaminophen (pain and fever reliever), Dextromethorphan HBr (cough suppressant), and Doxylamine succinate (sleep aid) we used green chile, ginger, citric acid and booze -- all herbal, if subtler, forms of the chemical stuff. A couple shots, errr, doses, of the stuff is perfect for sitting on the couch in a sweatshirt and sweating out your germs. Take that Big Pharma!" (Click here for recipe and a video)

Click here for Earl Thomas Conley

Click here for The Ramones

The secret word is Healthcare


I have very few reservations about what I eat and am not terribly squeamish about what I put in my mouth. Give me the fried grubs or eye of sheep, and I’ll chow down. Having never been confronted by civet coffee, I don’t know exactly how I feel about it. I do know, however that I am not at all happy about the poor fucking civet, banged up in a very nasty looking cage to digest coffee beans for rich assholes. The tale comes from the admirable Munz.

“SAGADA, the Philippines — Goad Sibayan went prospecting recently in the remote Philippine highlands here known as the Cordillera. He clambered up and then down a narrow, rocky footpath that snaked around some hills, paying no heed to coffins that, in keeping with a local funeral tradition, hung very conspicuously from the surrounding sheer cliffs. Reaching a valley where coffee trees were growing abundantly, he scanned the undergrowth where he knew the animals would relax after picking the most delicious coffee cherries with their claws and feasting on them with their fangs. His eyes settled on a light, brownish clump atop a rock. He held it in his right palm and, gently slipping it into a little black pouch, whispered: “Gold!” Not quite. But Mr. Sibayan’s prize was the equivalent in the world of rarefied coffees: dung containing the world’s most expensive coffee beans. Costing hundreds of dollars a pound, these beans are found in the droppings of the civet, a nocturnal, furry, long-tailed catlike animal that prowls Southeast Asia’s coffee-growing lands for the tastiest, ripest coffee cherries. The civet eventually excretes the hard, indigestible innards of the fruit — essentially, incipient coffee beans — though only after they have been fermented in the animal’s stomach acids and enzymes to produce a brew described as smooth, chocolaty and devoid of any bitter aftertaste.” (Click here for more.)

Click here for Jack White

Click here for Elvis



Is it a sign of advancing age when the actors playing Dr. Who look younger and younger?


Click here to penetrate the veil.

(Link lifted from hipspinster)


Image lifted from Adam Gorightly