Monday, March 31, 2008

"The Rocky Mountains is the marrow of the universe"

The title for my post today is taken from Jeremiah Johnson, an epic western filmed right here in glorious and now snowbound Utah. What? We are ten days into spring at there is four inches of new snow at my house?

That's right. I know there are those of you out there griping about this, but I kind of like it. It is like the winter is not going to go without a fight: that spring (which hasn't even taken a foothold yet) will just have to lump it a while longer.

As I recall there was a lot of snow in Jeremiah Johnson too.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Possible the best advertisement ever

Our mutual acquaintance Joel Veitch over at Rather Good dot com has a new video based upon an advertisement he created: (video/quicktime Object).

Why the hell not?

The Cylons look like us now

Just in case you are not prepped for the debut of the 4th season of the new Battlestar Galactica, here is an 8 minute update. I kind of wish they had the narrator in the actual series, so I could reclaim about 4 solid days and nights of my life, but oh well.

And you thought those people who obsess about the Lord of the Rings should get lives.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Goodness Gracious Me - Going out for an English

I am going to be very self-conscious the next time I go out for Indian food.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Renowned rivers

From the Utah Rivers Council:
Renowned Rivers - The Council recently released a report that highlights the top riversin Utah'sNational Forests. The report is designed to show what these incredible rivers look like and provides information that allows Utahans to explore these rivers. The entire report can be viewed at the Council's website. Also, read this article in the Deseret News about the report.

Take Action! Visit our Action Center to sign a petition in support of your favorite rivers!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

36 to 26?

Oy, I have been watching far too much basketball since Thursday--given all the fun of the NCAA tourney and the horrific (and badly officiated) Jazz loss to the hated Lakers on Thursday, but, dear god almighty, how the hell can the Jazz be falling to the Sonics?

I know you are gloating, Middlebrow. I can sense it all the way over here.

Ok, that's better: Korver just scored a trey.

38/29 Seattle. I might be less pissed off at the Jazz.

Now as far as the NCAA: at least UConn and Duke are out. My odd bracket picks pay off!

UPDATE (10:32 pm) Ok, the Jazz pulled back together. I might add that they only did it because I went to watch them do it.

UCLA also squeaked out a win--damn.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Solar images at SDAC

Our Sun is scary and beautiful: Solar images at SDAC, isn't it?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Another excellent blog you're not reading: Forest Gospel

Music! Music! Music: Forest Gospel

You will be 2.3 times cooler having read it.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

All fame is fleeting

Well the Idaho Press-Tribune article about Built to Spill didn't use my photo after all. Instead they chose a much crappier one. In any case the article is a nice view into the band:
When asked what it is about their music that resonates so deeply with their fans, the members of Built to Spill are truly at a loss.

“It’s just a weird thing,” Netson says. “When you start getting people buying your records that you wouldn’t necessarily hang out with, once you cross that line, it just turns into something else that you don’t even know. … You just make the record and once they put it out, it’s out of your control. … I don’t think anyone understands it.”

Friday, March 14, 2008

Starting Spring Break Out Right!

Multimedia message
Originally uploaded by Theorris

This was taken before the Jazz had officially won, but hell yah! Jazz win! Beat the best team in the league.

I'm predicting round three again, as I predicted previously.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Brilliant: Six-Word Reviews of 763 SXSW Mp3s by Paul Ford - The Morning News

Paul Ford of The Morning News wrote Six-Word Reviews of 763 SXSW Mp3s by Paul Ford - The Morning News
. The really good ones, of course, are the one star ones. For example, one review of an experimental artist is quite simple, by no doubt accurate: "Like a dog fucking a blender."

I think this might inspire me to write haiku song reviews. Oh yeah, I already do that with bars.


Wednesday, March 12, 2008

On the Road BluesVictory from defeat!

Well during the 4th quarter of the Jazz vs. Bucks, I was steeling myself to write a sad-sack, why the hell can't the Jazz win on the road post, when suddenly in the last 2 minutes, they finally showed why they are the good team that they are. Finally the fouls went their way and their ability to contain the ball came back. Credit Boozer for pushing it to the Bucks.

I will no need to trim my nails for a while, that's for sure.

Halftime Grr

I am endeavoring to remain positive about the Jazz's performance tonight against the Bucks, but it is difficult. How could they blow their lead and be only up by 1 at the half?

Okay--okay: at least I have the solace with the notion that the Jazz tend to have stellar second halves.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Post-partum analysis

A few things of note in the Jazz loss to the Bulls tonight:
  1. Kirilenko came back with a vengeance and looked pretty good. As usually people don't notice his scoring and defensive contributions. Lucky he had a great dunk and 2 three pointers tonight.
  2. Okur continues his super strong games (holy hell if he would just step back a bit and stop toeing the line on those 3 pointers.)
  3. The jazz seem literally cold (not metaphorically) when they play at other venues. Did you notice how much they continually blow on their hands at the beginning of away games? What's up with that?
  4. The Jazz are trying too hard to draw fouls that are never going to be called in their favor early on in away games.
  5. The Jazz still have a peppy game, but aren't bringing it out very often on the road.
  6. The Jazz's passing has gotten quite good lately. They used to be such a predictable team. The passes they are making are risky, yes, but cause for some great baskets.

Monday, March 10, 2008

It is all downhill from here

It is all downhill from here
Originally uploaded by Theorris

I went up to the World Superpipe Championship at the Park City Mountain Resort in Park City, Utah this weekend with friends. We were late, of course, since it was a Saturday morning and some numbskull decided it was a good idea to start the competition at 9:00 am. Consequently, we missed pretty much all the snowboarders, save the last 5 and Shaun White's victory lap, where he pushed the big air limits.

What the hell is up with the world? Why is this activity rewarded while I, as a fifth grader in 1975 had to go to the school nurse because of unfortunate contusions due to my skateboard wreck and, therefore, caused the banning of all skateboards at my elementary school?

Where is justice? I was not in pain. My friend Kevin Scheib and I were forced to go to the nurse because some ninny teacher thought we looked too banged up after we took the whole of the asphalt hill at my elementary school and wiped out, painfully, I will admit at the bottom.

I mean, my hell, did I witness the beginning of the end of being a kid in the US? Was it my fault they made our playground out of asphalt, and therefore made it perfect for a skateboard? Did I witness the point in time where, because their child stupidly decided that going down a somewhat steep hill with his best buddy in tow, parents decided that the school should be sued for it?

I guess so.

Thank god Shaun White's parent's didn't decide to sue whatever ski resort or skate park he beat himself up on.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Announcing Earth Day Blogging Challenge

Hey my fellow droogies (that is bloggers of the Internet's tubes), I have a challenge for you: starting on 16 April 2008, I challenge you to adopt one environmentally sound practice a day and follow it for the entire week ending on Earth Day (22 April) 2008 and then blog about it. So, for example, on day one, a blogger could decide to only use portable mugs rather than getting coffee in a paper or Styrofoam cup. The next day, she might decide to forgo plastic shopping bags for the rest of the week, while also getting her coffee in her portable mug. On day three she might decide to forgo bottled water. So she would put her new Nalgene in her reusable shopping bag while sipping on her portable mug of coffee. On day for she might forgo coffee altogether, given how far it has to come to get to get the idea. All the while she would be writing about her choices, I should hope not in a smug way, but I suppose if one adopts such a course, she can be a little smug.

Want to take part? I've created a Ning group for it: and will be sending out emails to those bloggers I have such contact information for.

Thursday, March 06, 2008


Middlebrow has a post about Hong Kong Phooey, number one super guy. My comment on his question about remembering HKP, was, and I approximate, "Who the hell could forget Hong Kong Phooey? It was Scatman Crothers!" For God's sake! Scatman!

Has Scatman been forgotten? Dear God, say it ain't so?

Scatman! You made so much of my childhood possible what with your multiple appearances on daytime TV and, of course, the fact that you were Hong Kong Phooey! Even I knew that at a tender age.

Scatman also singularly saved Kubrick's The Shining from near deadly bland dullness: "You don't need to know nothing about room two two seven!"

All that and when he arrived to save the day he was greeted with an ax to the chest.

Enough said.

Listening to: The Be Good Tanyas - Scattered Leaves
via FoxyTunes

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Battlestar Galactica Last supper

Battlestar Galactica Last supper
Originally uploaded by kidddrunkadelic14

Too cool for words.

I've become a big DVD addicted fan of BSG.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Richelle & Son

Weedy & Son
Originally uploaded by Theorris

Since my friend Richelle is leaving Zion for parts known (New York!), I thought I would pay tribute to her with the one of the best pictures I've ever taken. Ok, maybe it is not the best picture I've ever taken, but it is one that I stumbled upon this evening while trying to find another image from my past.

With all this PhotoShop learning I've done over the past month, I also felt the urge to touch it up a bit. In any case, it was taken with a positively pre-historic digital camera on September 16, 2000 at the Avenues Street Fair. Its native format was 640x480, so I'm afraid this is all you get.

I still really like the picture, however.

Richelle (who author's the Beamships blog I mentioned earlier) will be sorely missed in Utah.

Monday, March 03, 2008

What the hell was that all about? or Demanding Justice

So how much is the league going to fine Nowitski for mangling Kirilenko and throwing him to the floor simply out of his own frustration for sucking? At least Kirilenko manned up and made the free throws.

Theorris's judgement: Nowitski should be fined at least 10 grand and suspended for a week.

Johnson must be anticipating this a bit, as Nowitski hasn't been in the game since the incident. Well that could simply be because Nowitski is indeed sucking, but I is nice to think that the Johnson has made a moral decision to keep Nowitski out of the game.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

The gift outright or a punching your mother in the eye

The SL Tribune editorializes this morning on more silly Utah legislation:

"This land is our land: We're just thankful that Utah House Resolution 10, which tells Congress to quit creating federal wilderness areas in Utah without the unanimous support of the state's congressional delegation, is nonbinding. Built on the erroneous argument that Utahns should have more say over federal land here than other Americans who also own it, the resolution ignores the economic reality that ranching and energy extraction are yielding to tourism as Utah's primary economic engine. Wilderness-quality lands must be held in trust for future generations. We don't believe that we should entrust Utahns alone with that responsibility." (The Thumb - Salt Lake Tribune)

or, as Frost noted:

The land was ours before we were the land's.
She was our land more than a hundred years
Before we were her people. She was ours
In Massachusetts, in Virginia,
But we were England's, still colonials,
Possessing what we still were unpossessed by,
Possessed by what we now no more possessed.
Something we were withholding made us weak
Until we found out that it was ourselves
We were withholding from our land of living,
And forthwith found salvation in surrender.
Such as we were we gave ourselves outright
(The deed of gift was many deeds of war)
To the land vaguely realizing westward,
But still unstoried, artless, unenhanced,
Such as she was, such as she would become. (Robert Frost, "The Gift Outright." The Poetry of Robert Frost, 424-25)

What with the increased in Utah's population over the last 3 decades, my assumption is that most of us Utahns are out of very recent immigrant stock (immigrants to Utah, that is.) Now, I'm not going to beat this to death, but I think it is important to establish where we come from in order to move on to the question that bugs me about the presumption of the legislature that Utah should control the fate of wilderness within its borders. I'm not sure I will delve into the major contributing factor to the issue--what the belief system is that motivates people to "reform" nature rather than accepting it as it is. I will save that question for another day.

Now, back to the population issue: while Utah families tend to be large, I don't think that this would account for the massive growth in population. I suppose if I took an informal poll, I could easily determine Utah natives from Utah imports. Easily 50% of my colleagues in my department at work, for example are imports. I would not take this sample as a valid indicator of populace, simply because academia is an itinerant occupation and academics go to where the students, rather than staying where they are at and having no students to teach, even if they have to move to a place they detest.

This sudden expansion in Utah's population, has lead to, some might believe, certain attitude towards the land that Frost talks about: people think they own the land rather than being owned by it. In a Terry Tempest-Williams sense, we are of a place: that place shapes our psyche, our sense of self, even our values. What I'm getting at is that sometimes folks with out a sense of history of a place--without a sense of that place being "home" have little regard for either its preservation or sustainability. This certainly, I believe, has been a small factor in the destruction of Sugar House: recently arrived Utahns may not have any nostalgia for the place, and don't see the sense in preserving a bunch of dilapidated old buildings. (Bear with me, non-Utah native readers, as I'm not really insulting you.)

Now, of course, this being Utah, such a supposition is contradicted: the folks often times advocating for preservation of wilderness are not native Utahns. In fact it is often native Utahns who want to rip up the wilderness all for the sake of a few measly dollars that will go into their home towns (the rest of the wealth being exported to other climes--in that sense they are being colonized without even realizing it.) Often times these folks are seen as carpetbaggers and derisively called "Californians" no matter where they originate. They also seem to have a certain embarrassment about Utah: it lacks civilization; it is ugly desert; it is boring (all the things in italics are observations about Utah I've heard in conversation.)

Ultimately this is where a nativist gets it wrong: just because you are born in a place is not going to make you love it or be "owned" by it. In fact, you might think that because it is yours by birth right you can do whatever you want with it. Much as a 2 year old will willing sock his mother in the face, a native will figuratively sock mother nature in the face simple for the offense of being inexplicably there (and beautiful to boot.)

So what is the upshot of all this: never get used to anything because one day its not going to be there to be used to any more. Often times we adopt a place and are spiritually nourished by it, to go back to the Tempest-Williams goo gah.