Blingin' through tha synaptic corridors.

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:: Friday, December 27, 2002 ::
I came across an article on the decline of travel writing which includes a short, potted history of the genre. I suspect that it's a little pessimistic in its contention that travel writing is in its death throes. The travel book as memoir seems to be very much alive eg Dessaix published "Night Letters" a few years ago: part biography, part fiction, part memoir. Spurred on by the Lonely Planet publishing empire and the like, a new breed of writer has emerged to cater to the backpacker crowd. It is true, many are not particularly literary (perhaps confirming one of the author's complaints); they are however a little more irreverent, looking at the undercurrent, written from a background of pop culture motifs. Then there are novels of those spending time in a foreign place, not so much an account of external travel as internal; seeking to relate the experience of living in another place as a local and not a visitor.
:: Tuesday, December 24, 2002 ::
I've been meaning to migrate from pine to mutt for a few months now. A combination of being too used to pine and its keystrokes and a reluctance to put in the effort to learn mutt properly. mutt has a few advantages over pine eg pine occasionally plays up where mutt doesn't fail; better From: line editing. Still, I need to muck about with .muttrc so that it finds my address book and handles the sig dashes already present in my .sig.

Changing email programs is a little like changing religions. Is the new going to be any better than the old ? Is it useful to change simply to avoid habit ? To consider one's choices; a change of habit can lead to new understanding if only of the habits themselves :-) Feeling deep but playing in the shallow end.
:: Monday, December 23, 2002 ::
Ya know, I find it vaguely annoying...nay...insulting that The Castle, a well known Oz film is not available on DVD in Oz. It was released on DVD in the US a couple of years ago. I don't really want a version that's NTSC and that's had some of the dialogue altered to suit an USA audience who might not be familiar with some of the local vernacular.
:: Saturday, December 21, 2002 ::
I have discovered this week that procuring the Babylon 5 DVD boxset for Season 1 has been difficult, particularly at a cheaper price. RRP is about $120, HMV had it for $120, Ezydvd had it for $117, fbo.com.au had it for $103 (+delivery). Target however had it for $99.95! Of course I had to go to four different Targets to find one that had it. Quite a few of the online sites seem to be out of stock too. Given it was only released a few weeks ago, I'd say everyone's been caught by surprise at how well it's sold. Hopefully this won't mean that Season 2 will cost much more.
Nothing like a server crash to put you back a bit. Thankfully I now write my blog offline which means I've just got to remember to log on and re-upload. Thanks to Dave & Di for encouraging me to develop such good habits.
:: Tuesday, December 17, 2002 ::
Tried to catch Bowling for Columbine on the weekend but it had sold out both times I popped in. Oh well, it was only the advance screening weekend; I guess I can wait until its cinema run starts in a week or two...I think.
More grist for the Turing mill.
It seems my old alma mater, the Uni of Wollongong, is going down the linux path for first year compsci users. This was reported on /. though it's not particularly newsworthy given UoW's long association with unix related technologies. UoW has always had a strong sun presence.
:: Sunday, December 15, 2002 ::
Are there really whales in Lake Michigan ?
:: Friday, December 06, 2002 ::
The NPWS has a useful site for keeping track of what parks are open and closed due to bushfires. I've been watching it closely the last few days and can report that so far the park I'll be canyoning in on the weekend at Barrington Tops is open, though it only reopened a few days ago. Thankfully all the parks within a decent radius of it are also open, so there's some hope that the trip will go ahead. [postscript: I spoke too soon. The canyons were open but the main routes out of Sydney weren't. Gave up waiting for the roads to open with the onset of peak hour around 3.30pm.]
:: Wednesday, December 04, 2002 ::
Hmmmm 15 minutes to midnight...must goto bed. Worship at the feet of the Librarian Avengers.
It's actually 30 minutes short of the 4th but I want to have an early night for a change. This chap is a journo based in London and runs an interesting blog commenting on the world at large including a 'war watch' column.
:: Tuesday, December 03, 2002 ::
[/.] Lego death (though the flash is annoying).
[Next] Google Fight - Them there's fighting words...
:: Monday, December 02, 2002 ::
[Next] Wow, a really cool literary blog :)...seriously though, Arts & Letters Daily is laid out like an 18th century newspaper with short, 20 odd word descriptions of various articles found online. Full of links to newspapers, journals, discussions, book reviews and so on. A stimulating, arts oriented blog.