:: Wednesday, May 22, 2002 ::

1,000 maniacs? Woo-de-hoo! This blog got its thousandth hit sometime today. (It was unbeknownst to me, however, as I and the rest of campus was coping with an outage of MORENet. A thousand hits and I'm still not on blogdex? What's up with that?

Numbers game. Before I become too overjoyed about the throngs of visitors to this site, I need to stop and ponder for a moment the plight of King David. He got obsessed with numbers and growth, so he ordered a census. The results were not good.

Now what's wrong with conducting a little census every now and then? Just an occasional head count to see how many fighting men are at one's disposal? For that matter, what's wrong with checking the site meter to see how many Netizens are visiting the blog, and from where? I think it has to do with our obsession with measuring things -- and our obsession with bigness. Nearly every church wants church growth. Regular churches long to be megachurches, and megachurches become minitowns (New York Times registration required), where the average attendee can easily blend in, hidden among the crowds of spiritual shoppers -- and where, according to this article, it "is possible to eat, shop, go to school, bank, work out, scale a rock-climbing wall and pray there, all without leaving the grounds." (Link via Random Trout.

Megachurches aren't communities; they're small cities. This is something Chuck Smith Jr. hit on at Search Party.

Speaking of communities...

Scientists study how online communities form. Interesting MSNBC story about research into how various online communities coalesce and connect, and possible applications in the offline world. The article discusses the weblogging phenomenon and quotes Gary Flake of the NEC Research Institute, who says blogging is “the next logical step" in the development of online communities but adds: "while it is certainly changing the topology of the Web in measurable ways, I don’t think that this is necessarily a paradigm shift." The story also includes a link to a graphical presentation of weblogs, which isn't working at the moment but should look pretty cool once it does work.

Crosseyed and painless. Proofing the magazine this afternoon, I cranked up the Talking Heads, Remain in Light. A great snippet of lyrics from the "Crosseyed and Painless" track offers a lovely postmodern critique of the modernist concept of objectivity:

Facts are simple and facts are straight
Facts are lazy and facts are late
Facts all come with points of view
Facts don't do what I want them to
Facts just twist the truth around
Facts are living turned inside out
Facts are getting the best of them
Facts are nothing on the face of things
Facts don't stain the furniture
Facts go out and slam the door
Facts are written all over your face
Facts continue to change their shape

Even way back in the early '80s, while I was studying journalism and learning about the supposed objectivity of the journalist as impartial observer, I was listening to the Heads. While J-School was conditioning me and other wannabe journalists to carry on the farcical tradition of objectivity in reporting, David Byrne and company were speaking to me about the truth of "facts." I think those lyrics speak to me even more today.

:: Andrew 15:24 + ::

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In rotation

What I've been listening to lately. Click album cover or hyperlink to hear track samples and learn more.

Sermon on Exposition Boulevard Rickie Lee Jones, Sermon on Exposition Boulevard

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Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer? Of Montreal, Hissing Fauna, Are You the Destroyer?

Tones of Town Field Music, Tones of Town

The Girl Collection De Bossen, The Girl Collection

Robbers & Cowards Cold War Kids, Robbers & Cowards

Carinvore Simon Dawes, Carnivore

Until Death Comes Frida Hyvonen, Until Death Comes

Tratore Basics 2: New Brazilian Rock Tratore Basics Vol. 2, Novo Rock Brazil

Modern Times Yusuf: An Other Cup

Modern Times The Beatles: Love

Two Thousand The French Kicks: Two Thousand

Paper Television The Blow: Paper Television

Freedom Haters Unite! A Bloodshot Records Sampler, Vol. 1 Freedom Haters Unite! A Bloodshot Records Sampler

Beast Moans Swan Lake: Beast Moans

Prototypes Prototypes: Prototypes

Violence Is Golden Scanners: Violence Is Golden

Mothers, Sisters, Daughters & Wives Voxtrot: Mothers, Sisters, Daughters & Wives

Your Biggest Fan Voxtrot: Your Biggest Fan

Translate Macon Greyson: Translate

Get Evens The Evens: Get Evens

Veruca Salt IV Veruca Salt: Veruca Salt IV

Modern Times Bob Dylan: Modern Times

Look Your Best Pink Tuscadero: Look Your Best

Blue On Blue Leigh Nash: Blue on Blue

I Am  Not Afraid Of  You And I Will Beat Your Ass Yo La Tengo: I Am Not Afraid of You and I Will Beat Your Ass

Boys and Girls in America The Hold Steady: Boys and Girls in America

The Longest Meow Bobby Bare Jr.: The Longest Meow"

Hello Love The Be Good Tanyas: Hello Love

The Lemonheads The Lemonheads: The Lemonheads

Ben Kweller Ben Kweller: Ben Kweller

We Are The Pipettes The Pipettes: We Are the Pipettes

Surprise Paul Simon: Surprise

Sev7en Exene Cervenka and the Original Sinners: Sev7en

A Hundred Highways Johnny Cash: American V: A Hundred Highways

For the Best of Us The John Doe Thing: For the Best of Us

Runaway Bombshell The Fondas: Runaway Bombshell

Flat-Pack Philosophy Buzzcocks: Flat Pack Philosophy

Citrus Asobi Seksu: Citrus

The Loon Tapes 'n Tapes: The Loon

2006 Pitchfork Music Festival Sampler Various Artists: 2006 Pitchfork Music Festival Sampler (24 free tracks)

News and Tributes The Futureheads: News and Tributes

Zoysia The Bottle Rockets: Zoysia

Let's Get Out of This Country Camera Obscura: Let's Get Out of This Country

Bang Bang Rock & Roll Art Brut: Bang Bang Rock & Roll

A Blessing and a Curse Drive By Truckers: A Blessing and a Curse

Broken Boy Soldiers The Raconteurs: Broken Boy Soldiers

The Life Pursuit Belle and Sebastian: The Life Pursuit

The Greatest Cat Power: The Greatest

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