Allen Ginsberg was wrong

Your first thought is actually not usually your best thought. That’s not to say you should supress your first thought. If you don’t have your first thought, you can’t have a second. Just maybe hold off on sharing it and always reserve the right to edit.

That is my thought for today. Actually, it’s my second thought for today. I’m keeping the first to myself.

Someday Community Meeting notes

Ron Newman wrote up an excellent summary of the meeting.
In a nutshell:

  • Peter Creyf, the owner of Mr. Crepe, signed the lease to the space that the Someday occupies. That lease apparently is written such that it could be transferred to the proposed employee-run co-op.
  • He’s willing to transfer the lease to them if alternate space can be found, though he stressed that the chance is very small. However, the mayor, Joe Curatone, showed up, and the meeting was moderated by alderman Rebekah Gewirtz, and both have pledged to help Creyf find alternate space.
  • If alternate space isn’t found within 7-10 days, Creyf will start doing the building work to turn the Someday into Mr. Crepe beginning August 1, hoping to open by September 1. He didn’t seem too hot on the idea of merging the two businesses (someone suggested “Mr. Someday”).

Someday update

Update: There’s a community meeting at the Someday at 5pm where people interested in saving the cafe can meet with Peter Creyf, the owner of Mr. Crepe, to make a case for why he should not sign the lease. Particularly helpful would be people who have suggestions of available alternate commercial space for Mr. Crepe, but all are welcome.

So I’ve been following along with the Someday news on the Someday Community Google group. Interesting stuff afoot; hard to tell if anything has much of a shot. But I thought it was worth repeating some of what’s going on, with the hope to get the word out beyond people in the Google group. Take with appropriate grain of salt.A group of people who work at the someday are trying to set up a co-op; Gus, the owner of the Someday and Toscanini’s, is apparently willing to sell the Someday to them. (I’m not entirely sure how this improves the negotiations with the current landlord unless the idea is that he has something particular against Gus). So, they still need to find a new place for Mr. Crepe, convince Mr. Crepe to take it instead, and talk the landlord into letting them sign the lease. A benefit is tentatively planned for July 21. Someone ran into Jennifer Kimball, and she said she might be willing to play at a benefit.

If you’re going to be in Davis Square for Artbeat tonight or tomorrow, you should also stop by the Someday and sign the petition they’ll have there.

I will, unfortunately, be out of town.

But I doubt Xoogling will become a word…

I enjoy reading the Xooglers blog; it’s like readingMicroserfs in installments written by the actual (former) serfs instead of Douglas Coupland who, in addition to other faults, just doesn’t get software. Today’s piece is a great crash course in the absurd world of trademark enforcement.

Aside: every year there’s always all this talk about all the new words that get put into the dictionary, but I think it would be just as interesting to acknowledge and memorialize the words that are getting retired.

YouTube = Campaign Finance Reform

Good Washington Post article on the effect that YouTube might have on campaign advertising.

If any teenager can put up a video for or against a candidate, and persuade other people to watch that video, the center of gravity could shift to masses of people with camcorders and passable computer skills. And if people increasingly distrust the mainstream media, they might be more receptive to messages created by ordinary folks.

Even the seemingly simple act of posting footage of a politician’s interview on “Meet the Press” or “The Daily Show” has a viral quality, because it can be seen by far more people than watched during a single broadcast.

The positive is that in such a world, more money does not mean more/better ads, deflating the corrupting influence of interest groups and PACs and large campaign donors and candidate fundraising. It is in the nature of the Internet to “treat as damage and route around”, and I think this is another case of that.

The negative is more complicated. I believe that what gives a clip viral qualities is often something that taps deeply into the irrational parts of the human psyche. Sure, the same can be said of the manipulative techniques used by current political advertisers, but somehow, that is a known evil, and at least they follow some set of standards (whether spoken or unspoken or actually regulated). I can easily imagine how a completely false but highly viral message could completely tar a candidate. The whole thing brings the level of political discourse even farther into all those murky messy parts of human nature that politics are supposed to be one defense against.

Then again, it might make no difference whatsoever. Political viral-ness may never be able to do more than preach to the choir, and candidates always may have to pay to get their message in front of people who don’t already think what they think.