Dispatchwork: Tel Aviv walls patched with Legos

Just stumbled upon work by Jan Vormann, who has filled in wall cracks with Lego bricks in Bocchignano, Italy, and more recently, Tel Aviv (below).

Street art pricetags

Hrag points out an interesting bit of street art/critique by Mr. Talion, who slaps big yellow price stickers on pieces of street art in New York and Berlin. Above, Shepard Fairey's Obey; below, a piece by Swoon.


Minnesota-made meme: The "Lizard People" write-in vote

Minnesota Public Radio's "Challenged Ballots: You be the judge" post has got to be the site's top traffic generator ever. I've seen it linked locally and nationally, on buttoned-up news sites and Comedy Central's Indecision '08. That last one, which references the infamous contested write-in vote for "Lizard People" (destined to be our "Hanging Chad of Aught Eight"), ends with a few salient questions:
Should the county have accepted the Franken vote? Does the voter consider Al Franken equivalent to the Lizard People? Is Lizard People a collective, or just one person like Cat Power? If elected, will the Lizard People rule benignly or will they control us with their forked-tongue tyranny?
Currently MPR is the top hit on a Google search for the term "Lizard People" (followed by "The Best Conspiracy Theories (Lizard-People Are Running the World!"). Whoever these reptilian-Americans are, MPR, Al Franken and Norm Coleman really put them on the map. In fact, according to Google Trends, they weren't anywhere at all up til now.


Video: Just watch.

A bizarrely effective ad/short film for something that starts with the letter W.

Video: How the Yes Men pulled off the fake New York Times stunt

CNN interviews The Yes Men's Andy Bichlbaum and Eyebeam/Anti-Advertising Agency's Steve Lambert on how they created the spoof New York Times Special Edition, a speculative edition of the paper that includes what Paddy Johnson calls "Liberal America’s wish list": an end to war, the PATRIOT Act repealed, free universities, the works. A million copies of the paper were dropped in New York on Nov. 12, and as the duo tells CNN, it was a collaborative effort of dozens of writers and hundreds of others.


MIT launches Center for Future Storytelling

The center is envisioned as a “labette,” a little laboratory, that will examine whether the old way of telling stories — particularly those delivered to the millions on screen, with a beginning, a middle and an end — is in serious trouble.


But [center co-founder David] Kirkpatrick and company are not alone in their belief that Hollywood’s ability to tell a meaningful story has been nibbled at by text messages, interrupted by cellphone calls and supplanted by everything from Twitter to Guitar Hero.

“I even saw a plasma screen above a urinal,” said Peter Guber, the longtime film producer and former chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment who contends that traditional narrative — the kind with unexpected twists and satisfying conclusions — has been drowned out by noise and visual clutter.

Map mashup: 1860 cotton production v. 2008 voting results

While not suprising, this is interesting: a map of cotton production in the pre-Emancipation Deep South (1860) superimposed on an Election 2008 vote-results map, by county.

Punk for sale

Christie's auctions off punk memorabilia:
Three decades after punk exploded in a brief but potent fit of abrasion, alienation, and anarchy, the auction house Christie's is holding the first major US sale of memorabilia from the punk era on Nov. 24...

...The prospect of a tony auction house hawking high-priced artifacts from a fundamentally anti-consumer movement is drawing dismay from such observers as New York's Gothamist website and the UK's Guardian newspaper. "Back in the day," wrote the Guardian's Priya Elan, Christie's "wouldn't have let the likes of Joey Ramone and Patti Smith through their door."

TC Looks-Like Meme continues...

The Twin Cities Looks-Like meme keeps going, with new offerings:
Andy Sturdevant = Richard Dreyfuss + Sigmund Freud
Colin Kloecker = David Cross + Mathew ("Lost") Fox
Me = Chris Elliot
There's been a little talk of Aaron Landry looking a bit like Louie Anderson, but I'm not going there.


Buy local:

Made in MN2008

Separated at birth: Me and Chris Elliot, Taylor and Young Chuck Norris

So Colin finally caught on to what people have been telling me since I was in 9th grade (before There's Something About Mary, Tostito's commercials, and Groundhog Day): I look like Chris Elliot (in a Brad Pitt sort of way). So, to keep the game going, I tag Mediation's Taylor Carik, who looks a lot like SNL's Andy Samberg. At least when he's playing Young Chuck Norris.

Green rock: Studio 360 on Cloud Cult

Last night, Studio 360's episode "Creative Minds Go Green" featured a re-broadcast of an April segment on green musicians. Minnesota's Cloud Cult was included, with lead singer Craig Minowa (an environmental scientist with the Organic Consumers Association by day) discussing the band's corn-based CD shrink-wrap and efforts to reduce the tour's carbon footprint. Best line: "We go back to the hotel room and figure out how much green-energy credits we have to do instead of figuring out how many lines we're going to snort... It's pretty boring."

Listen to it.

Cloud Cult performing "Everybody Here is a Cloud" at The Current's stage at SXSW 2008:


Where will your computer go to die?

Every year, the world generates 50 million tons of e-waste -- discarded cellphones, computers, printers and other electronic devices -- and first-world countries are the biggest contributors. Current.tv takes a tour of Guiyu, China, and other "toxic villages" where workers risk poisoning through the widespread industry of dismantling, recycling and sometimes burning electronic parts -- often in workshops that double as private residences.


Obama election fails to bring apocalypse

With all the fuss about Barack Obama being the anti-Christ, you'd think his election would send the infamous Rapture Index through the roof. Not so: it went up a measley one point, and its founder admits Obama is "probably not" the anti-Christ. Y'think?


McCain concession: "Lipstick on a pig"

Well put:
Of course, McCain’s gracious concession speech is only notable because it contrasts so sharply with the sad and shabby campaign that he chose to run. Five classy minutes should not expiate several months’ worth of name calling, insinuations, and intellectual dishonesty. Honor cannot be worn like a jacket, to be slipped on and off as the situation dictates. John McCain irrevocably ceded his moral high ground during the course of his campaign, and the press should realize that one good speech doesn’t change that. Joe Klein has it right: Talk about putting lipstick on a pig.


America: Bluer than it looks

If Barack Obama earned more votes that John McCain, how come that red-and-blue map is so... red? Via Jeff Severns Guntzel, here's a more (um, and less) accurate map by Mark Newman of the University of Michigan. It's a "cartogram, a map in which the sizes of states are rescaled according to their population." While many geographically large states went to McCain, many population-dense smaller states went to Barack.


I'm poring over images of front-pages of today's newspapers around the U.S. and the world to see how the Obama victory was covered. But before I get to that, here's how a local blog reacted.