Blog archive March 2004

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28.03.04 / 02

this description of the 'carnival of light rave' in early 67 sounds familiar:

the inside of the roundhouse was turned into an 'environment' by being draped in sheets for light-shows. as at the technicolour dream and similar hippie events, the audience wandered amid art-objects and installations as films were projected and music was performed.

the beginnings of postmodern worship...

28.03.04 / 01

actually macdonald is a perfect example of someone stuck in modernity, for whom postmodernity is a meaningless and disturbing chaos. interestingly, he was born in 1948 ie is a baby boomer. but like many of that generation, he can't accept what music became after the late 60s, groove rather than melody, dance rather than song. a book like this is uncool is a standing disproof of his feeling that good music ended with the 60s, but he was the kind of music critic for whom a subtle shift in chord structure between two lines of a song is more important than whether you can dance to it. head music rather than body music.

27.03.04 / 02

have just been belatedly reading revolution in the head, the study of the beatles' songs and their times. i'm struck by the author's comments about the onset of postmodernity in the 60s, which echo things i've written and gleaned from others.

the 'generation gap' which opened in the fifties turned out not to be a quarrel between a particular set of parents and children but a historical chasm between one way of life and another... a new way of life so persuasively and pervasively replaced an earlier one that the majority made the mental crossing between them without really noticing it...

the sixties inaugurated a post-religious age in which neither jesus nor marx is of interest to a society now functioning mostly below the level of the rational mind in an emotional/physical dimension of personal appetite and private insecurity...

When Lennon remarked in 1966 that the Beatles had become 'more popular than Jesus', he put his finger on it. the Christian social values of the old culture were then giving way to a life dominated by technology-driven consumer materialism, an impatient expectation of instant gratification, and a self-before-others ethic that has since fragmented western society.

as you may intuit even from these quotations, the author ian macdonald was not fond of post-60s society or its music. he makes this very clear in the book, going so far as to suggest that the soul of western civilisation died in the late 1960s in the onset of postmodernity. he took his own life in august 2003 after a long battle with depression.

27.03.04 / 01

a magna carta - good thinking by dan hughes

The act of asking for less is a radical act. More radical than merely starting a new church or denomination or not-for-profit organization. The systems of organizational self-perpetuation and masspopcult programmed life are sustained by consumption. Ask for less and the systems themselves are called into question. Ask for less and you free yourself from the things and programs and obligations that monopolize your time with the mass popular culture substitutes for the normal human living that we are all already doing.

17.03.04 / 01

dupe clothing has a very cool piece of flash indeed. navigate by turning the pages of an on-screen book. the clothes are also cool tho i'd like more photos rather than illustrations. i found this while researching flat cable for under carpets! because gore do flat cable, and dupe currently feature on their gore-tex site.

16.03.04 / 03

just noticed while archiving for january that this blog was a year old on 2nd february. i missed the anniversary, obviously.

16.03.04 / 02

spent ages on the new howies website. nice though i don't quite approve of flash sites. was looking for nic walters' accepted t-shirt design [the real reason he wanted me to go check out their display in selfridges]. it's the 'obsolete' one. might buy.

16.03.04 / 01

the way things are at the moment, coming home to my own life is like surveying a neglected room that needs tidying - where to start? invariably only the most superficial cleanup gets done. so much is constantly put aside for 'later'.

15.03.04 / 01

andrew lorien just sent me a link to, which is a wonderful site of animated fractals - but far more than mandelbrots and things. very cool design. gravityIndex is a good place to start playing. i especially like and being a fan of all verner panton's works.! no! i can't stop playing! i will go mad!

09.03.04 / 01

just bought a new cd walkman after my old one broke. they've dropped the 'cd' from the name. i presume it means that cassette walkmans aren't made anymore. can't remember when i last saw one. funny how technologies slip out of our lives unnoticed. when did you last buy a prerecorded tape cassette? does anyone still make them?

08.03.04 / 01

actually it seems snowcrash isn't a going concern any more, but it's worth following the links to the product source sites, especially david designs. i love this range of lights that inflate when switched on

and this inflatable room from offecct

07.03.04 / 05

grace lent blog is very good. i only just caught up with it due to late work etc etc

07.03.04 / 04

lunchtime jottings #2 - how some of our problems eg over gay marriage may arise from closure of the canon of scripture:

because to say that this body of scripture is sufficent for all time renders inevitable a time when there will be dissonance between it and the society of the present

but this will not have been understood by the church at the time of closure because they could not have expected such change in society

we have been forcibly made aware of the difficulty by our own experience over the last 50 yrs in particular of unprecedented change. we have been forced to reinterpret scripture on the fly as seldom before. we have been obliged to radically change our method of reading it into something looser, more provisional

closure of the canon as a safety measure in time of heresy - a collective agreement that these documents are authentic and consistent, those are not

i'm not saying that closure of the canon is wrong or not inspired - but it means we have to make the canon work harder. when situations arise that seem to be outside the canon, either closure was wrong or we have to revise our readings of parts that had previously seemed straightforward.

07.03.04 / 03

lunchtime jottings #1 - explaining the gospels in a way that makes sense in contemporary terms of how they are different and yet still factual:

mattthew, mark and luke are documentaries about the three years of jesus' ministry with flashbacks to his birth and an incident at the age of 12 which shed light on the present. three different documentary makers working on the same life will draw different emphases, different edits from the same material, from their own POVs and for different audiences [matt jewish, luke aristocratic gentile, mark for the unconverted masses]

john is the art movie, or at least the movie that is art. the structure is artificial, stylised. it ignores most of the documentary material to home in on the most significant and dramatic moments, the moments that reveal the deeper meaning. reality rather than realism. it has the star wars intro, the words from over your head. it deals in vivid imagery - light and dark, bread and blood, water and the spirit. it concentrates on moments of intense personal encounter more than mass scenes.

07.03.04 / 02

it's been a while since i blogged. all work including last weekend. this weekend i was doing alt worship stuff at the student christian movement conference with adam. it suffered from my last-minute efforts and lack of entirely appropriate software. jonny has it all sorted. numerous services ready-made on his laptop, just add a video projector and ipod for sound. this was the first time i'd done this so i'm not so prepared. it would have been a lot harder without adam, who could do the video aspects of the service in his usual stylish fashion [3 tvs off a small laptop]. i said to the congregation, we're doing what eight people normally do.

07.03.04 / 01

snowcrash - more funky furniture for churches - portable inflatable rooms, beanbag chairs, inflatable lights etc

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