Q: what would we need to do if my kid won more Drama awards?

A: We’d have to rent a trailer.

(And I was about to write gee, I wish he’d study something else…he should chase what he loves. Exhibit A = me, my life. Worked in some things, not in others, next time, i’ll be cuter and easier to get along with).

Submitted Genetti to Austin after the Nicholl. Why not?

There’s a kid who has been a nightmare all year, swearing and sarcasm and just nasty. Called a kid a faggot last week, skips detention and acts like he’s too dumb to remember to go, tries to stop the class by pounding on his desk.

Today, he just had to look at his phone in class.

Rules are rules.

Prudence, this time.

Living an isolated life in a college town, living like it’s 1950: old fridge, dial telephone, rides a bike, dresses like June Cleaver (and hates it when people think she’s trendy or a hipster) Won’t touch a computer.

Doing papers for spoiled rich kids the old-fashioned way: books! She knows the library better than the librarians. Where is her money going? A brother in an institution.

She is alone; no buddies or colleagues like last time.

So what is the motivation that gets her into trouble?

What did I do during my meeting, while I was sitting across from my principal?

Why, I plotted out my next script on PostIts.

Note for later:

Vivi (the magic expert/previous victim of Sofia) to Bellamy (new victim)

You can believe whatever you want to believe. You can just sit there and believe that your boyfriend’s eyes changed color on their own…or that he got two inches taller…or that his scar disappeared in the shower. You know what happened to me.

It’s the oldest faith the world has ever known. Thousands of years, people trying to connect with the…currents of power running through the earth, trying to harness that energy. They performed rituals, they sacrificed, they believed- and they just couldn’t do it. No, it takes someone like her. She’s…tapped into it, and that’s how she did those things to my husband and that’s how she changed your boyfriend and-

You’re looking at me like I’m crazy. You’re saying to yourself- when can I walk away from this psycho bitch? Fair enough. Walk. But think about this: up til now, all she’s done is- redecorate the house, get it up to her particular tastes. Next thing she’s going to do? She’s going to move in. What do you think she’ll do to you if you decide you don’t want to move out?

“The tradition of the “best man” is thought to have originated with the Germanic Goths of the 16th century. He was the “best man” for, specifically, the job of stealing the bride from her neighboring community or disapproving family, and he was probably the best swordsman, too.”

and I saw that and thought: this is 2015. We’re not talking about swords. What if your best friend is marrying the ex of a very, very bad man…and you have to not only protect them, but keep the trouble and attacks from throwing even a shadow of trouble over the wedding itself?

What have I been up to?

sheesh. nothing, really. tried to go keto- lasted half a day. Sigh. I am teaching the hell out of Julius Caesar and punishing young people for doing dumb things like saying offensive words or trying to distract others during lectures. I almost worked out tonight.

Ah, well.

See, when I finish writing something, it’s like I’ve emptied out my head. I’m fine the first day, but after that…I’m like, what am I for right now?

I need to lift weights, shoot guns, get off the damned ground.

Proof that Edison was a monster.

edison nightmare doll

from Gizmodo:

Thomas Edison’s phonograph company came out with a line of groundbreaking “talking” dolls in 1890. They lasted only six weeks before being yanked from stores, because the dolls sound like the risen Satan singing a lullaby. Now with the help of new technology, you too can listen to the dolls’ voices and never be at peace again.

Edison’s talking dolls must’ve seemed like a magical invention and a great idea at the time, on paper at least. When a crank was turned on the back of the doll, it operated a wee phonograph inside; bits of nursery rhymes recorded onto wax cylinders then “played” from the doll.

As the New York Times points out, these little toys were quite significant:

Sound historians say the cylinders were the first entertainment records ever made, and the young girls hired to recite the rhymes were the world’s first recording artists.

All well and good and quite cool for the history of recording technology. However, for the demographic the dolls were aimed at — and skittish bloggers 100+ years later — the screechy, disembodied tones emerge as a horror-show beyond words. I made it through one recording — a “doll” reciting “Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep” — before I had to go outside and stand in the sunshine, away from the nightmare that was issuing forth from my speakers.

I love old technology, the uncannier the better. The Musée Mécanique in San Francisco, which features all kinds of antique automatons, is one of my favorite places in the world. I’ve spent hours making freestanding typewriters type out my fortune and feeding coins into dramatic mechanical dioramas. But I’ve long been uncomfortable around the idea of “sentient” dolls, incapable of watching horror movies that feature them. Leave Chucky out of this; I blame childhood Twilight Zone marathons and the episode “The Dummy.” Nope, nope, nope.

So the recordings may set me a bit more on edge than they do you — but if you listen, and imagine yourself as a small child alone in a gaslit room hand-cranking the noise out of a blank-faced stuffed companion, you can see why the dolls weren’t a hit in Edison’s day. The technology behind them, however, was hugely innovative — as is the tech used to recover their recordings.

The Rolfs, a couple who collected Edison phonographs, had kept a pair of the dolls for years, but were afraid to “play” them, for fear that the steel phonograph needle would damage the delicate wax after the space of a century (and also probably for fear of summoning Beelzebub). But they wanted to know what the recordings contained, and put out a call for assistance.

Enter a government lab that developed a new technology to play fragile records without having to set needle to groove. The tech, called Irene (Image, Reconstruct, Erase Noise, Etc.) is the brainchild of particle physicist Carl Haber and engineer Earl Cornell. Here’s how Irene works:

Cylinders carry sound in a spiral groove cut by a phonograph recording needle that vibrates up and down, creating a surface made of tiny hills and valleys. In the Irene set-up, a microscope perched above the shaft takes thousands of high-resolution images of small sections of the grooves.

Stitched together, the images provide a topographic map of the cylinder’s surface, charting changes in depth as small as one five-hundredth the thickness of a human hair. Pitch, volume and timbre are all encoded in the hills and valleys and the speed at which the record is played.

Irene can also help reconstruct audio from damaged recordings that were once thought to be unplayable, which is an incredible use of cutting-edge tech to help us better uncover and restore the past.

Listen to Thomas Edison's Scary Talking Dolls and Never Sleep Again

Now for the first time since the 1890s, Edison’s uncanny dolls can be heard, and the recordings digitized for mass distribution and maximum terror. The Edison Historical Park has posted the doll recordings for listening here, and you can read more about the dolls’ history here (and on past!Gizmodo):

well, it’s 10:36

and the button got pushed and the credit card got charged.


1. I really, REALLY hate losing the ‘Song of Songs’ love scenes.  I thought they were so good. I may have to write a Bible-related script just so i can use them.

2. I know, I said I’d outline.

I didn’t. Not really. I mean, I’ve been living with this thing for 3? 4 years? Playing with it in my head all that time. It was never far from me.

3. The weird feeling in my stomach is gone now. That’s a good thing. I’ve been nauseous, sorry TMI. Maybe I recognize that it’s as good as I can make it. Good enough? Won’t know until practically next year.

For now? I’ve got papers to grade, I’ve got a diet to get back to, I’ve gotten so weak! But I feel good. I’ll sleep well. Might volunteer for Bernie Sanders.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.