December 25, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 9:
The Most Incredible Thing of All

Many apologies for delaying this post, largely due to obsessions with trying to make this Christmas at least an acceptable time for my parents and me.

Suffice it to say all went well, and if it isn't too late to spread some holiday cheer, here at last is Just One Story… Episode 9 — and our first one to feature a Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale.

Without further adieu, here is Diane Wolkstein telling an audience favorite, "The Most Incredible Thing of All":

©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

There are some great holiday bundles at Mme. Wolkstein's website, so do take a look at them now while you still can. You can at least ring in the new year with stories that will bring some much needed warmth during the rest of the Winter.

Merry Christmas, dear friends.

December 7, 2010

Greetings of the season

Because we want to wish you the best for Yule… here are members of the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship at Stony Brook's Unicorn Singers, performing the English version of the carol also known as "Er ist ein Ros' entsprungen," one of your Projectionist's favorites.

Please forgive the clumsy framing at the start, and just take in the singing:

2010 Philip David Morgan / Promenade Digital Mediaworks.

And Happy, Happy Birthday, Lisa Martin (who was one of the altos in the New Century Singers, so missed at this year's Charles Dickens Festival), with all the love in the world.

December 4, 2010

Manish Acharya has left the soundstage

Very sad news this morning, from Passion for Cinema:

Manish Acharya

Filmmaker Manish Acharya who shot into prominence with his very first film Loins of Punjab Presents (he even co–wrote and produced it) passed away a short while ago today (4th Dec, 2010).

Fans of Nina Paley's modern animation classic Sita Sings the Blues may recall that he provided the voice of one of the narrating shadow puppets who appeared from time to time in the movie, commenting on the Ramayana, the main source material from Ms. Paley's movie.

Please read the rest of the PFC post, get your copy of Loins of Punjab Presents (from IndiePix in the States, or Eagle Home Entertainment in India), and download or buy your copy of Sita Sings the Blues when you have a chance. Both come heartily recommended and both show so much promise of what could have been had he been allowed to make just one more.

Farewell, Mr. Acharya. I wish I had a chance to meet you. You did good.

December 3, 2010

House Lights: A shortened Promenade? [Update: NOT!]

Dear Friends:

It is almost one year since the Promenade began. The Promenade Digital [Mediaworks] website went up on 10 December 2009, and the first Just One Story… episode was posted nine days later. In that time, I have had the good fortune of being cross–posted on the Parabola website and Story Lab X.

Here it is again, because the story is so good and the message is still so true.

Indeed, who knows, what the future will bring?

©2009 Philip David Morgan — Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].
Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Right now, unfortunately, the future is very much on my mind.

You see, your Projectionist is amongst the underemployed (yes, that stress is intended), and like so many others in the States, he has had to prioritize his health and his one big financial obligation (a car lease) over the production of new Just One Story… episodes.

And on top of that, the annual bill for Promenade's web–hosting account (serviced by the fine people at Fat Cow) is due next Friday. (See the PayPal link in the right–hand menu? Please use it, and help me pay the bills, if you want the Promenade website to roll on in 2011.)

In the past year, I've taken note of a few facts:

1) every Just One Story… episode produced and released thus far has been recorded in New York City;

2) the lion's share of this year's episodes were recorded somewhere in Central Park (most of them at the Statue of Hans Christian Andersen); and

3) most of them feature my good friend Diane Wolkstein. (I do have two upcoming episodes with Jesslyn Wheeless, and there's also one episode with Dianne R. Carr, with whom I will be working again eventually.)

Which leads to…

4) Not one Long Islander has come forward to offer a story for the show. (Even though I've run into a few of them on Facebook.)

As a Long Islander who wants Promenade (and its Esperanto sister, Konstelacio) to be a source of pride for my neighbors and friends in the Long Island arts scene, it's pretty depressing.

I am formulating a plan to help one artist (a painter and poet) with no Internet access develop a strong online presence, and I will say more about it in the coming year. I also want to revive Konstelacio in the coming weeks, even though the revival may have to take a far different path than the one I had wanted.

To understand what I mean, have a look at what Julianne Escobedo Shepherd at AlterNet recently learned:

Last week, the Department of Homeland Security seized 82 [eighty–two] domain names for allegedly hawking counterfeit goods ranging from knockoff Coach handbags to bootleg DVDs....Most of the seized Web sites… sold reproductions of designer goods and hard copies of jacked movies. A few sites on the list, though, stuck out:, and are popular music blogs that were generally involved in the promotion of artists, rather than outright piracy. Well–known among rap fans for posting the latest videos, singles and remixes (always hosted from third-party download sites), their seizure was shocking, not just to the hip–hop blogosphere, but to music sites everywhere. Their inclusion on a list of sites that profit from manufacturing hard goods seemed arbitrary and ignorant. Furthermore, these sites were directly involved with artists, widely viewed as outlets that could help artists build buzz and promote their upcoming albums.

Is it the proverbial tip of the iceberg? These words from the Department of Homeland Security's ICE (Immigrations and Customs Enforcement) squad certainly suggest it:

The coordinated federal law enforcement operation targeted online retailers of a diverse array of counterfeit goods, including sports equipment, shoes, handbags, athletic apparel and sunglasses as well as illegal copies of copyrighted DVD boxed sets, music and software.

Except that music blogs — not just those covering hip–hop and other pop sounds but also eclectic and outsider scenes — don't sell "a diverse array of counterfeit goods." That's not their purpose in the first place.

It doesn't seem to matter to the ICE squad, who took pre–emptive action while Congress is playing hot potato with the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act (COICA) — something that is likely to gain traction and perhaps even become law with the next U.S. Congress. (Although I encourage you to sign an online petition to stop it dead, as it should be.)

While you might think that Promenade is immune from this kind of arbitrary cyber–raiding, I am still worried — not so much for myself, but for others whose only crime would be to remix culture as a higher form of art critique. That would snare not only well–known plunderers as Negativland ("that's the letter 2 and the numeral U?"), but also organizations such as the Media Education Foundation, whose own (expensive) DVD line pushes the fair use envelope while wedding it to the sorry talking–heads/agenda video formula. (Would they get nailed for daring to, say, challenge the power of Madison Avenue to ensnare children and indoctrinate them in a lifetime of unhealthy consumption?)

And don't forget that my first video, signed as Konstelacio in 2008, is also a mash–up — forged in a rage over people still shopping as ever even as the U.S. economy went into meltdown. Another future target?

I'd hate to think how big ICE's dragnet really is. But next year, if my finances improve, I'll probably be stocking up on USB flash drives for video circulation. It's an idea that recently made perfect since to Sarah Fimm, who is a brilliant unsigned musician. Stress the word "unsigned."

Thinking about it now, I could welcome several 4GB USB sticks in my stocking this year.

We often credit the Chinese for the expression: "May you live in interesting times." But as Heather Forest quotes the farmer as a refrain in her version of the Taoist tale above, "I don't know if it's a good [bad] thing or a bad [good] thing."

And that's where my mind is, as Promenade turns one.

Here's hoping it gets there. You can help by clicking the "Donate" button to the right. Please don't hesitate. Xie xie (Thank you).

UPDATE 2010.12.07: One very generous soul came through on 6 December, so our website is still very much alive and well and will keep on ticking in 2011.

November 30, 2010

The literal lesson

Nina Paley's Mimi and Eunice and the power of ideas:

Not a Good Idea
Courtesy Nina Paley.

How would you want to meet your next "good idea"?

See you again on the other side of the month, with a new Just One Story… episode.

November 23, 2010

November 17, 2010

Whatever happened to dignity? (NSFW)

Those of the Projectionist's followers living in the States will get this PDQ:

Methinks I should get an XtraNormal account — not for original works, but for rants that become full–flung dialogues like this.

You mean…?

Nina Paley's Mimi and Eunice (now available between two covers!) get it so right, which is why we love 'em:

Courtesy Nina Paley.

Tim O'Reilly has more on the subject.

November 12, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 8: Horse and Toad

Earlier this year, I gave you a live performance of the Haitian story "Horse and Toad" featuring Joy Kelly Smith and Diane Wolkstein (as Horse and Toad, respectively). That video was cut for Mme. Wolkstein's website and was made at a benefit for Haiti back in May.

Now we have the redux, recorded especially for you Just One Story… fans:

Story ©1978, 1997 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

That wraps our Haiti series for 2010. A Hans Christian Andersen story recorded back in September will be coming your way just after the U.S. Thanksgiving. Maybe just in time for Buy Nothing Day — that is, if you all can be as good as Santa (or the Three Kings) would want you to be.

Shall we all give it the ol' college try?

November 10, 2010

Sita sings the WHAT?!

Nina Paley's best–recognized character (to say nothing of mythological) is getting places, as this Yfrog–hosted image demostrates:

Uhh… "whatever."

Coming Soon: Conlang (updated — no embeddeable video)

Disney can keep their holiday video release slate — your Projectionist wants Marta Masferrer and Baldvin Kari's short Conlang this holiday season!

Unfortunately, the preview that used to be on the movie's Kickstarter page is gone, and I can't embed the replacement video. But waltz over to the project page and have a look around. If you're sufficiently tempted, you can help fund the home video release (via Amazon Payments, so have your credit card ready).

November 8, 2010

One New Year's resolution, already declared

The beginning Esperanto student, or komencanto, wants to make a comeback:

Courtesy La studio Konstelacio, k.t.p.

Translation: Stop buying movies. Start making movies.

Rest assured he will. Even if it means doing Esperanto–subtitled episodes of Just One Story… for starters.

By the way, the search is still on for the Malegaon–made movies in the previous post. And yes, I still want to see the finished Malegaon ka Superman (on a legal, original disc). For those wondering why, get FilmKaravan's disc of Supermen of Malegaon and pay close attention to the way the movie got made. It's very DIY, very I–can–make–this stuff, and it's why I want to see the complete, finished product.

November 6, 2010

Why should finding Malegaon–made movies be so hard?

Today, your Projectionist is on a campaign of his own making. And this poster should say all he needs to say:

With apologies to Krunal Music.

For anyone willing to help (seriously), you can also let me know in the comments. No span, virii, or counterfeit goods. Original VCDs only.

Subtitles (or the lack thereof) are not an issue.

November 5, 2010

So that's the secret of your success

Words (and drawings) of wisdom from none other than Nina Paley:

Start Where You Are
Courtesy Nina Paley.

If you like what you see, Mimi and Eunice's creator has a whole book to OD on.

November 2, 2010

An offer you can't refuse?

Oy. VEY:

The above is a video version of a radio advert that aired in Minnesota, bankrolled by the Election Integrity Watch (consisting of, among others, the Northstar Tea Party Patriots and the Minnesota Majority… of conservatives, that is).

A full rogues' gallery is offered by The Nation (and cross–posted at Common Dreams).

Read it, be forwarned, and then go out and VOTE.

November 1, 2010

National Pumpkins, Rolling (like cameras)

For those of you wondering why NPR dropped its full three word identity (National Public Radio), perhaps this piece posted on Vimeo will explain. Then again, maybe not.

At least it's useful for those who wanna do pinhole photography on the dirty cheap:

©2010 NPR.

Whether or not it will placate public radio and TV foes is another story.

October 31, 2010

Creature Features: IT Came from Citizens United!

Aren't you glad Hallowe'en will be over in a matter of hours? Can't end too soon for your Projectionist.

Today we come (thankfully) to the end of our barrel of conservative agenda movie trailers and teasers. And today, I've saved the baddest for last: a trio from (drumroll, please)…

Citizens United.

That would be all I need say, save for the fact that David Bossie's group is about more than sly money used to grease the wheels of conservative politics in the States. It's about making expensive (to me at least) agenda flicks that, when they don't take pot shots at famous people (not just Michael Moore, but also Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama), rail against all they see as wrong with their belovéd America. (Never mind that America, when viewed on a globe, is one big, three–part continent where you're expected to get along with your neighbors. But who needs that pesky fact when you can be busy making flicks like Border War?)

Ah, but elections happen in two days, so this time we'll give you previews for the three DVDs they have been pushing online in recent weeks — starting first with Generation Zero:

©2010 Citizens United Productions No. 1, L.L.C.

Not shivering yet? How about a peek at Battle for America?

©2010 Citizens United.

Got the chills now? Time for the creepiest of the lot, Fire from the Heartland: The Awakening of the Conservative Woman:

©2010 Citizens United / Victory Media.

Gonna dare yourself to order these discs? Do so, and… you become ONE OF THEM! (Demonic laughter in the background.)

No, seriously, you can't buy these videos and not accept Citizens United membership. I checked.

It's scary enough to watch these guys make monster movies. Watching them is even scarier, because the horror (for lack of a better word) "creeps" over you bit by bit.

But enough for another year, everyone. Try to enjoy 31 October. And, please, as Radio New York International's Pirate Joe would tell listeners: "Don't! Vote! Republican!"

Seriously, though, please vote with your head. See you at the polls.

October 30, 2010

Creature Features: Eye Spy for the MPI

…and I don't mean the company formerly known as Maljack Productions, Inc., or MPI Home Video. (Although they will sell you a Region 1 DVD or Region A Blu–ray disc of Tom Six's The Human Centipede [First Sequence], or all the Dark Shadows episodes you want.)

No, the MPI in this case is the Moving Picture Institute ("promoting freedom through film"). They were in the news recently (not the newspapers regularly devoured by your Projectionist) when one of their own, John Papola got to share a Templeton Freedom Award (with collaborator Russ Roberts) for a little rappish number called Fear the Boom and Bust.

See, these guys — Friedrich von Hayek and John Maynard Keynes, I believe — meet in a bar…

Courtesy John Papola & Russ Roberts.

For the record, Messrs. Papola and Roberts' piece got them an Innovative Media trophy and USD 10,000 (plus 1.5 million hits for Google's YouTube).

O.K., that's impressive. Give them props, even if the message of the video makes you ill. The Moving Picture Institute favors free market politics, and the movies they choose to get behind reflect a free market/conservative philosophy.

Don't feel bad if you haven't heard of this MPI. (I would have preferred they use another name, to avoid confusion with the company once notoriously known for releasing the Faces of Death franchise.)

Last night, we gave you trailers for The Cartel and The Rubber Room, two films attacking the education establishment, both of which the Moving Picture Institute have backed. (Sorry, guys, but I refuse to use just your initials — please see the opening paragraph above.) Today, I'll give you the previews for three more titles that could be considered inflammatory, starting with Nick Tucker's 2008 feature Do As I Say, which tried to puncture holes in the public reputations of former U.S. Vice–President Al Gore and moviemaker/gadfly Michael Moore (who has been used to getting skewered in the past, and always survives each attempt, including this one).

Again, no need to feel bad if you didn't hear of or catch this one. It seems to be yet another fly–by–night title that faded fast (and in any event, you can buy a DVD if you really want to):

©2008 Do As I Say Productions, L.L.C.

Say, I did promise you "rancid Greenpeace soldiers," so how about a taste of Mine Your Own Business (also out on disk)?

Courtesy New Bera Media and the Moving Picture Institute.

Or how about U.N. Me ("you and me"?) for a few laughs?

©2010 Disruptive Pictures.

The Moving Picture Institute does help back some films that, judging from their descriptions, don't seem as outraged (or is that outrageous?) as these three. We'll deal with them post–Hallowe'en. Or maybe post–Election Day in the States (Tuesday 2 November).

Besides, the real chillers are yet to come.

October 29, 2010

Creature Features: School of the Teaching Dead?

You know something is up when no less than four "non–fiction" features target the educational establishment in the United States.

I will review one of them, Madeline Sackler's The Lottery soon, but here's the teaser in the meantime:

©2010 The Lottery, L.L.C.

You probably have already heard of Waiting for "Superman," Davis (An Inconvenient Truth) Guggenheim's recent take on the subject — only because three big names (Viacom's Paramount Pictures, Participant Media, and Walden Media) poured their cash into the project. So far, Guggenheim's film has been a public lightning rod for pundits on the side of unionized teachers (or representatives of their unions) and united in their distrust of charter schools. (You will have to visit Paramount's site to view the theatrical trailer, which I can't embed without it launching automatically.)

But the Moving Picture Institute ("promoting freedom through film") has gotten behind two other features that unionized teachers and their supporters will dread if they are not already — namely, The Cartel (due out on DVD 1st December):

©2010 Bowdon Media.

… and one with the creepier title of The Rubber Room (Flash rules the film's website, unfortunately):

©2010 Five Boroughs Productions.

What'll be tomorrow's chiller, people? Maybe some rancid Greenpeace soldiers?

October 28, 2010

Creature Feature: I heard it through the tannoy

Courtesy of 5–Second Films, every cashier's (and supermarket manager's) worst nightmare:

©2010 5–Second Films, L.L.C.

Heaven help the "closers"

October 27, 2010

The 800–pound monster in the room

Nina Paley is clearly an expert on the stuff of nightmares, such as what happened to the TV Shack website, among other web destinations:

Courtesy Nina Paley.

If that's their dinner, I'd shudder to think what (or who) would constitute "desert."

Creature Feature: Trailer for I Want Your Money

Beginning tonight, your Projectionist is bringing you teasers and trailers for some of the creepiest movies available to humanity. That is, if humanity is depraved enough to demand them.

Case in point: The trailer for the recently–released (and subsequently yanked) agenda flick I Want Your Money, which purports to show "how… big government programs have been tried in the past at great moral and financial cost to the nation."

But is it for real? Or has Ray Griggs merely put an Obama costume on a over–worn boogeyman?

I embed. You decide.

© 2010 RG Entertainment, Ltd.

But good luck finding a theatre that's playing it right now. Most likely they've made room for Lionsgate's (supposedly) final Saw flick. Stressing the word "supposedly."

Just One Story… Episode 7: Owl

Finally! The long overdue Episode 7 of Just One Story… is here for your viewing pleasure.

We still have a couple of Haitian tales to share with you — and this time, it's the story of "Owl" (from the collection The Magic Orange Tree and Other Haitian Folktales), who has to… well, "face" a very real obstacle to love.

Once again, drummer Oneza Lafontant is backing the delightful Diane Wolkstein — all the better to give this story its crucial "beat."

Take it away, Diane!

Story ©1978, 1997 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Hmm… shall I give you Episode 8 in time for the Hallowe'en weekend? Hmm? Cric?

October 26, 2010

Creature Feature: Pest Control

A lite appetizer for you courtesy of 5–Second Films (who do much more than just give Chico, California a bad name):

©2010 5–Second Films, L.L.C.

You think that's a monster movie? Stay tuned, folks. The real chills come later this week.

Feature Presentation: Welcome to Chico!

Courtesy of 5–Second Films (one of the marginally–sane net–studios on Vimeo) is their quickie series Welcome to Chico! — the kind of show you might wish was never made in your hometown.

Definitely NSFW time…

All ©2010 5–Second Films L.L.C.

All we want to know is… what did the people of Chico do to deserve this?

P.S.: The "old–school" wavy look on all three videos is intentional.

October 24, 2010

VOD: An Invitation to World Literature

Just learned that the WGBH–TV/Seftel Productions series An Invitation to World Literature is now streaming for free at Annenberg Media's website.

Of special interest to me is Episode 7, which deals with the Asian epic Journey to the West (also known as the Monkey King Epic), and which has my friend Diane Wolkstein as one of the guest experts.

Here is the episode description provided by the Annenberg people:

"The powerful and mischievous Stone Monkey King brings chaos to heaven and earth. Freed from a mountain prison in order to guard a Chinese monk on his journey to retrieve the Buddhist scriptures from India, Monkey seeks his own spiritual transformation. Modern performance, contemporary art, and Buddhist philosophers provide a rich context to the ancient tale. Featured cast members include playwright David Henry Huang, storyteller Dianne [sic] Wolkstein, and translator Professor Anthony Yu."

I wish I could embed Episode 7 directly, but Annenberg clearly doesn't "get" YouTube or Vimeo (unlike those of us who actually do, and with good reason), so you will have to:

1) go to the Annenberg site linked above,

2) scroll down the episode list until you reach Episode 7 ("Journey to the West"),

3) find the "VOD" (video on demand) icon and click on it, and

4) make sure you allow pop–up windows for the Annenberg site (Firefox may be set to block them, so you will have to un–block them and refresh the page so that the window opens and the video loads).

Look at it this way: you won't have to petition your local PBS station to air the series, let alone in prime time.

I'll say more after I've had a chance to view the episode.

October 9, 2010

DVD Review: Beware Dogs and moments captured

Beware Dogs (2008)
Directed by Spandan Banerjee
FilmKaravan/Overdose DVD, NTSC all region
CFBC rating: V/U

©2008 Overdose Films Pvt. Ltd.

When I began the Just One Story… series, my intent was clearly to document live storytelling as it happens. I had no intent to do a "polished" or "stylized" series of videos — all I wanted was to capture a series of moments when art is created, however "small" it might seem to the larger world.

The Had I been aware of it sooner, I could have taken my inspiration from Spandan Banerjee's delightful forty–five minute featurette Beware Dogs, made in 2007 at an aging mansion in the Karol Bagh section of Delhi, India — a space that has served as the "workshop" for the musical group known as Indian Ocean.

Thankfully, FilmKaravan obtained the North American rights to Mr. Banerjee's little film and released it recently on a limited–run DVD. And, with some stylistic differences aside, it seems like we're both interested in capturing "moments."

Mr. Banerjee and his camera team got the green light to visit with and record the band — Susmit Sen, Rahul Ram, Amit Kilam, and the late Asheem Chakravarty — as they were working on music that would be used by Arindam Mitra for his film Shoonya. At the time, the band had very little to work with — no footage or script, just vague ideas supplied by the producers. The title itself means "nothingness," and as Mr. Chakravarty observes, how do you work with that as a cue?

Despite this limitation — or, perhaps, because of it — we witness the four musicians gradually piecing together the words and music to the song that they hope will satisfy Mr. Mitra and his team as their own movie gets made.

And the way the members of Indian Ocean make music is itself remarkable: they actually rehearse and create together, in a space that allows for anything and everything to happen, when any one of the four can step in and make his contribution to a tune. It's an organic approach that they take to the level of art, never releasing a song until it is "ripened," as they put it.

The beauty of Beware Dogs (and the forty–five minutes of extra deleted scenes) is that Mr. Banerjee never intrudes or gets in the way of the band's brainstorming, but merely records it as it happens. Except for some stylistic touches (post-production effects or overlaid stills and live concert footage), he keeps the proceedings as natural possible. Quite simply, we are free to witness the "brewing" of music as it happens, as free from interference as is possible. It's something I try to do with Just One Story…, and it's a pleasure to see this in a film made far from where I live.

My one concern comes directly after the Central Board of Film Certification rating card is displayed: we suddenly hear someone (one of the band members?) giving driving directions to the old mansion in Karol Bagh. (The cover art shows a large statue of Hanuman, a nearby landmark, and the film's title is a reference to the two words on a metal plate attached to the gate of the manor.) While the band as a whole may have had no qualms about the driving directions being on the soundtrack, who else might take this as a breach of their rights to privacy?

That aside, I can strongly recommend Beware Dogs not only as a welcome look into the creative process of making music, but also certainly in how we as video–makers can document that process. Of course, fans of Indian Ocean will want this disc, too — especially as a souvenir of the band's celebrated line–up since Mr. Chakravarty's passing away in 2009 — but even those new to the band (as featured in Anusha Rivzi's black comedy Peepli [Live]) are encouraged to check this one out.

I also encourage newbies to hit for Jaideep Varma's feature Leaving Home — The Life & Music of Indian Ocean (Cartwheel/EMI India, NTSC all region, CFBC rated V/U), a rich feature–length documentary that not only offers more of their rich sound in the raw, but also allows the band members to tell their own story in their own voices and words. It's a rich enough feast at 1 hour 55 minutes plus almost a full hour of extras&hellip but one of those extras is a prevue for an even longer cut of the film (more than four hours), promised for Christmas Day. Talk about giving the fans a big present!

And let's not forget about Peepli [Live] (CFBC rated A), due out on DVD from UTV shortly — and just in time for gift giving.

[UPDATE 2010.10.14: has notified me that my copy of Peepli [Live] won't ship until at least… December 6th. Fine, I'm a patient man.

Meanwhile, FilmKaravan must really love my review — they've cross–posted it verbatim!]

[UPDATE 2010.12.30: That longer cut of Leaving Home has arrived.]

September 29, 2010

You wish

I Can Has Cheezeburger has a nifty way to get rid of George Lucas' long–in–the–tooth franchise:

funny pictures of cats with captions
©2010 Pet Holdings, Inc.


Diversion: UTV logo makeover

Those of you who saw I Hate Luv Storys [sic], Peepli [Live], and We Are Family may have noted that UTV (one of India's biggest media player and certainly the nation's best filmi studio, hands down) recently gave their logo a complete makeover. It looks fine on a poster, but how good is it on the (big) screen?

Here's part of the old UTV ID, side by side with the new:

©2010 UTV Software Communications, Ltd.

I just hope that UTV's Ronnie Screwvala doesn't abandon the studio's penchant for edgy masala moviemaking; they're so damn good at it.

The reason for Just One Story…

I've made some significant changes to the Promenade Digital website, including a much–needed revision of the page about Just One Story… Part of the reason was to elaborate a little on an example of how storytelling met the VHS videotape. I'll expand on that elaboration here.

In 1987, when I was at the National Storytelling Festival, I suffered from a bombardment of marketing overload. Quite a few tellers were hawking VHS videotapes of their work (Ed Stivender's The Kingdom of Heaven is Like a Party ended up being my fave of the lot), but I also saw a monitor playing select volumes of a eight–tape series called American Storytelling.

You see, in 1986, the H.W. Wilson Company (still very much in business) partnered with a new venture called Storytel [sic] Enterprises™ (itself long out of business) to produce the American Storytelling collection.

Made solely for library and school use, it presented some of the best tellers in the United States — including my friend Diane Wolkstein, Heather Forest, Mr. Stivender, Jay O'Callahan, and the late Chuck Larkin and Brother Blue — each telling a different story… but recorded inside a television studio, under standard TV production conditions. (Mme. Wolkstein's segment used her beautiful picture book White Wave: A Chinese Tale.)

Today, I unearthed H.W. Wilson's brochure for the series, which made some rather lame claims for the series, among them being:

"The intimate nature of the video medium is especially well–suited to to reproducing the unique relationship between storyteller and audience, capturing all the flavor and vitality of a live storytelling session. In simple but evocative stage settings, each personal storyteller creates the immediacy of a live performance."

Well, to quote one of the characters in the recent masala comedy Khatta Meetha:

"I'm allergic to bullshit."

As I asked in my revised Just One Story… page, how can intimacy and immediacy be possible when your subject is recorded under studio conditions with the only other human presence being not an audience of ordinary people, but a phalanx of technicians?

One more quote from the brochure, and then I put it away:

"In a recent article in the Wilson Library Bulletin, Augusta Baker, Storyteller–in–Residence at the University of South Carolina's School of Librarianship, noted that 'The purpose of storytelling is to motivate children to read.' Librarians, teachers, and parents can use this series to encourage children's appreciation of literature."

Funny, but to me that doesn't sound like the sole (or even the most important) purpose of storytelling. And the line that "librarians, teachers, and parents can use this series to encourage children's appreciation of literature"… why does this sound like a taste of what would later come with the "edu–tainment" swindle personified by the Disney–owned Baby Einstein® franchise?

Just as toddlers can't (and, according to some very high–profile studies, don't) learn anything from the deluge of toddler–targeted videograms, what made H.W. Wilson and Storytel believe that children would truly be motivated to seek out world folklore because of a rather antiseptically–made series of videos, however well–intended? (Beyond US dollar signs, that is?)

Let's face the facts, my dears: while the series may have helped the careers of the chosen tellers, American Storytelling was in fact an attempt to put a living art "under glass," not to be touched or interacted with, the publishers' claims notwithstanding. You want true storytelling, you gotta go to the tellers themselves. Just One Story… makes no false promises of changing people's minds and tastes, and in any event, that's not why I make the show. I make it because 1) Diane Wolkstein is both a living legend and a dear friend whose art deserves to be documented, and 2) there are others in the same boat with her, and attention needs to paid to them.

No bullshit from me. But then — all together now:

"I'm allergic to bullshit."

P.S.: Diane Wolkstein is one of the Featured Tellers at this year's National Storytelling Festival, with a packed schedule for all three days. If you're going, make sure you see her, and then introduce yourself afterwards. Please tell her that Philip David, your faithful Projectionist and her faithful Webmaster, sent you.

September 28, 2010

Keeping your balance

Ah, WordPress

Your Projectionist is re–casting his website using the popular CMS (content management software) after having trouble with getting Joomla to play nice with Vimeo Universal Player embeds. The template I'm using right now needs serious tweaking (I need to insert a Copyright declaration, and the brown trim needs to be changed to the colour I use in the Promenade logo), but at least we're on our way. If you've got an iPad® and couldn't access the Just One Story… episodes on our homepage, try it now.

Meanwhile, Nina Paley and her friends Mimi and Eunice strike again:

Courtesy Nina Paley.

Uh… "quite."

I think.

September 15, 2010

House Lights: Random frames in September

Just a few short items to share with you this time:

First, we did record a new Just One Story… episode to share with you in December: Diane Wolkstein telling the Hans Christian Andersen story "The Most Incredible Thing of All." This makes two HCA stories that we've captured thus far in 2010. So let's see… Buddhist stories, Hans Christian Andersen, and Haiti. Plus two original stories. We must be doing something right.

Second, because you might be asking, "So why wait until December?"… we are intentionally keeping to one episode per month because we can't record every week (personal circumstances prevent us from doing that) and we don't want to run out of material as it happened to us earlier this year. As of now, we should be able to offer you a story video each month through at least February of next year.

Third — and this one hurts — we may be forced to switch our website from Joomla to Wordpress in the coming days. The reason is that, as much as we like Joomla, we've been frustrated by the CMS's inability (in its most recent version) to support Vimeo's Universal Player embedding. (We switched to Vimeo itself because of the limits and frustrations we had with YouTube.) And, yes, we did try a plugin fix that hasn't worked for us.

The way we found out about this weakness in Joomla came when I visited an Apple Store and tried to access our website with an iPad®. The page loaded, but not the embedded videos. While you can visit the Just One Story… page and jump to our videos on Vimeo from there, I'd rather that iPads (and aPads) be able to load our videos, on our website, without issues.

We may make the switch as soon as we can find a Wordpress template comparable to the one we used with Joomla. I hope to do it late in any one evening so as to minimize disruptions on your end.

Finally, our last Central Park shoot for 2010 could be Saturday, September 25th. It is still up in the air, as we have another recording commitment later that day. After that, baring any invitations to come back to the big city for a special video day, we will likely be staying put on Long Island for the rest of Autumn and all of Winter. Unless Diane Wolkstein tempts us out for one more shoot. We love her that much.

Thank you, everyone, for standing by us.

September 6, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 6: Two Donkeys

It's the first week in the month, and you know what that means. Right, a new Just One Story… episode.

I'm still working my way through the 5 June 2010 video shoot with Diane Wolkstein and drummer Oneza LaFontant; this is the second of four stories recorded that day:

Story ©1978, 1997 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

Enjoy, and stay tuned for Episode 7!

September 3, 2010

Music Time: Marina V

Lucky peeps in Washington (D.C.), Pennsylvania, New York, and Maryland: Marina V is coming your way… and here's a taste of the sweet sounds you can expect to hear (from her latest album, My Star):

©2010 Marina Verenikina and Nick Baker.

Your Projectionist is catching her live in New York on September 13th. Will you (and where and when)?


August 29, 2010

House Lights: Talk is still cheap

Quoting Avatar director James Cameron (as recently interviewed by the Washington Post):

DVDs are wasteful. I think there's less plastic in a DVD than there is in a VHS. It’s a consumer product like any consumer product. I think ultimately we're going to bypass a physical medium and go directly to a download model and then it’s just bits moving in the system. And then the only impact to the environment is the power it takes to run the computers, run the devices. I think that we’re not there yet, but we’re moving that direction. Twentieth Century Fox has made a commitment to be carbon neutral by the end of 2010. Because of some of these practices that can’t be changed, the only way to do that is to buy carbon offsets. You know, which again, these are interim solutions. But at least it shows that there’s a consciousness that we have to be dealing with carbon pollution and sustainability.

Given Fox's recent "special edition" re–release of Avatar and the no–extras release of the film on home video (three different packages already on the market), any talk of being "carbon neutral" isn't exactly translating into a News Corporation–run studio "walking the talk."

Especially when ClearBits™, VODO, and the Internet Archive, among others, already lead by example.

Oh, yes: Mr. Cameron's output (a considerable glut of monetary excess and with a gigantic "footprint" of its own) is overrated. Including Avatar — itself a gigantic waste that didn't deserve to be bankrolled, dazzling visuals aside.

August 27, 2010

Just observing...

Courtesy of The Daily What, and taken outside the Skyway Drive–In Theatre in Warren, Ohio:

It reminds me of why I went Bollywood.

And I hope that this particular drive–in doesn't go out of business anytime soon.

P.S.: The film line–up has since been changed.

P.P.S. And here's where you might be able to find any of the surviving drive–ins here in the States.

August 22, 2010

Sound familiar?

In honor of a May 25th Indian Express story (cross–linked, interestingly, on UTV Motion Pictures' website) about a comic book being circulated in India (in English, Marathi, and Hindi versions) urging the young not to download movies (itself part of a joint effort between Hollywood and India's film industry)… we bring you another visit from Mimi and Eunice:

Courtesy of Nina Paley.

One has to wonder how Malegaon Ka Superman auteur Shaik Nasir would see things.

August 16, 2010

That first step's a lulu

Leave it to Nina Paley to nail what it's sometime's like for me, whether it's finding a lasting job or getting a video series off the ground:

Courtesy of Nina Paley.

Uh… quite.

August 15, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 5: The Magic Orange Tree

Without any further adieu, here comes Diane Wolkstein with a storytelling classic. That's all I need to say, really.

Except that this one's shot in widescreen and 720p HD (you can watch it that way on its corresponding Vimeo page):

Story ©1978, 1997 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

It's the first of four stories recorded at the Statue of Hans Christian Andersen (in New York City's evergreen Central Park) back in June. We'll have the second one in a few weeks.

August 13, 2010

Coming Attractions: Peepli [Live]

It's been a while since we did a Coming Attractions post, but then we've been waiting for one movie to stand out in a crowded field.

The day has come, and the film is Peepli [Live]. Already it has gotten some good reviews, such as this one from Screen India.

There is an entire YouTube account full of videos from UTV (which is handling the release of the film almost everywhere but Germany and the UK) and producer Aamir Khan's company, but I'm highlighting the international trailer. (Note: this video has no opening studio logos or Central Board of Film Certification rating card. The CBFC gave the film an "A" rating — for adult audiences — due to adult humor and swearing.)

Courtesy UTV Motion Pictures and Aamir Khan Productions.
©2010 Aamir Khan Productions (Pvt.), Ltd.

See you at the movies.

UPDATE 2010.08.13: For what it's worth, the producers posted this quote, reportedly from actor Salman Khan, on Facebook (apologies for the Hindi that's peppered throughout, as well as the need to correct some of the spelling):

"Mr. Midas Touch has produced a picture. Midas touch matlab ke aamir khan. Nattha. [Peepli [Live]] has a mad–ass touch [, especially] the press [should see] the film. [When] I came out of the movie[,] [Peepli [Live]] was happening right outside and I was nattha and went nutta.I [didn't] let [Aamir] touch me after the film. Agar mujhe gold mein badal deta toh??? Last — [Everybody should] watch this film. Its comedy tragedy khulasa sansani breaking news."

Sincere reviews are welcome in our moderated Comments.

UPDATE 2010.08.14: An interview with Mr. Khan is now up on AlterNet.

August 11, 2010

House Lights: Ronald SMASH! (Sorry, wrong character, but still...)

There are many things that truly irritate your Projectionist. Not among the least of them is the way Big Food, Big Toys, and Madison Avenue do a tag–team body slam on the inner workings of kids in the States. (We'll try to tackle how it's done in other nations another day.)

In the meantime, Flesh and Stone has called McDonald's and Disney–owned Marvel on the carpet for an unwelcome appearance in many a kid's "Happy Meals"™ by two {ahem} big shot cast members of The Fantastic Four® franchise:

"McDonald's Happy Meal promotions are under attack. It’s not just the negative impact fast foods are known to have on child obesity, say public health advocates. It’s also the major food marketers’ unconstrained advertising tactics aimed at children and their promotion of unhealthy stereotypes.

"McDonald’s latest marketing campaign features 'The Thing,' a bulky orange Marvel comic action figure, who roars, 'It's clobbering time!' when the button on its back is pushed. The toy is inappropriately aimed at preschool boys, says the Campaign for a Commercial–Free Childhood (CCFC). The organization has launched a letter writing campaign telling McDonald’s to remove the toy, and its colleague 'The Human Torch' from Happy Meals.

"'It's bad enough to use junk toys to sell children on junk food,' said CCFC's Director Susan Linn. 'But now, for preschool boys, a so–called happy meal at McDonald's features the horrifying spectacle of a man engulfed in flames and a menacing figure that explicitly spurs them to violence.'"

At last check, when Disney acquired Marvel in 2009, they acquired properties populated by some five thousand characters, heroes and villains alike, as part of the House of Mouse's efforts to claim and dominate the young male populace. So I suspect we will be seeing more of this, not less. (Just visiting the Marvel site will provide a [ahem] taste of sights to come. And don't forget DC Comics, owned by the peeps at Time Warner… yep, the Warner Bros. peeps.)

For those not interested in seeing your toddlers suddenly bellowing "Hulk SMASH!"™ for no apparent or justifiable reason, the CCFC has an online letter–writing campaign waiting for you.

But before you click on that, I recommend devoting a good chunk of time reading Henry Giroux and Grace Pollock's very in–depth probing of marketing the Disney way at Truthout. If you're not already asking questions about the motives hatched at 500 Buena Vista Boulevard in Burbank, California… well, you soon will. Trust me.

Oh, yes: This isn't the first time that the CCFC has tangled with Disney: Here's the organization's "never surrender" declaration on the House of Mouse and the Baby Einstein® properties they bought back in the year 2000 and still vigorously defend to this date. (Even though they're indefensible.)

UPDATE 2010.08.11 @ 15:36: Here is the text of my message to McDonald's CEO Jim Skinner:
Good Hello Mr. Skinner:

Up until now, I have had no reason to contact McDonald's management. But the recent Happy Meals promotion using Disney–owned Marvel Entertainment properties, such as the "Thing" and "Human Torch" characters from the Fantastic Four franchise, has upset me to the point of writing this note.

It is bad enough that the Walt Disney Company routinely promotes its media properties — movies, TV shows, whatever — through your establishments (as do other well known entities). But when you aim a character toy programmed to play a "IT'S CLOBBERIN’ TIME!" message at the press of a button, well…

I am aware that Disney acquired Marvel in 2009, as part of a concerted effort to corner the young male market (and as one of many profit making motives to make more of the world's populace captive to anything branded with one of the many names Disney owns outright). But you can and must learn to set limits, if for no other reason than that of taste.

Yes, I know, this promotion involves The Fantastic Four, a long–established Marvel Comics franchise involving four people with… well, "issues," who suddenly have their worlds turned upside down as a result of radiation that makes them mutate into something other than human. (To call them "superhuman" is another matter of individual taste — you either like Marvel product or you don't; ditto Time Warner–owned DC Comics.) But your decision to hand little boys the horrifying spectacle of a man perpetually aflame or a menacing rock–textured figure with a violence–inducing call is enough to tarnish McDonald’s reputation — if, indeed, it has one — as a family–friendly company. (Disney stopped being family–friendly years ago when, among other things, they acquired Miramax Films and allowed the studio to develop its family–un–friendly Dimension banner under Disney's watch.)

I am a media producer myself, but I know my limits. Please recognize your own, and end this obscene promotion at once.

Thank you.

August 5, 2010

Getting down to business

Your Projectionist is a wee down in the dumps, having recently lost his full–time warehouse job. While he gathers his wits and prepares to re-work his resumé, he is also putting some spit and polish on Promenade Digital [Mediaworks], his little hole–in–the–wall studio. Apple's iWork is now installed on his parents' iMac, which can do things much faster and easier than with his old Mac Mini — and do it in widescreen as well. It'll help because the next episodes of Just One Story… are shot that way.

Post-production will begin soon on Episode 5, the first of a handful that were shot at the Statue of Hans Christian Andersen in New York City's Central Park. This is manna to story lovers in the Big Apple: stories al fresco, in the company of children and their parents. Community wrapped around an hour of story. We'll soon have some of the fragrant fruit for you both here and on the Promenade website.

In the meantime, Mr. Morgan has been working to represent what he "sells":

Now you can't say you didn't meet us

And a good thing they came out well once printed.

July 22, 2010

Feature Presentation: The Story of Cosmetics

It's been two years since ex–Greenpeace staffer Annie Leonard and the creative team at Free Range Studios brought the world The Story of Stuff, an amazingly quick analysis of our shabby consumer habits. The collaboration has since resulted in separate pieces about "cap and trade" strategies and bottled water — and a Story of Electronics is now in the planning stages. (Oh, yes: Free Range also brought you What is the Meatrix. Can't forget that one.)

So without further adieu, brace yourselves for… The Story of Cosmetics:

©2010 Annie Leonard / Free Range Studios — The Story of Stuff Project.
Produced and released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Non Commercial – No Derivative Works 3.0 license.

Maybelline execs, you've been warned.

July 15, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 4: One, My Darling, Come to Mama

Just in time for the weekend... another helping of good ol' Just One Story…

This time, Diane Wolkstein offers the world a poignant Haitian folktale in which the most amazing thing is the fourth — and intentionally neglected — daughter's capacity to forgive her mother for the injustice done to her as a child.

Watch what happens:

Story ©1978, 1997 Diane Wolkstein.
Video ©2010 Diane Wolkstein/Philip David Morgan —
Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

This is our last 4:3 (or "academy" ratio) episode. We'll be going 16:9 widescreen next time.


July 11, 2010

Just One Story… Episode 3: And now, Dianne R. Carr

Last month was a busy Just One Story… month, with three Saturdays devoted to recording the celebrated Diane Wolkstein at the Statue of Hans Christian Andersen in Central Park. You will soon see these episodes posted here, and I will hopefully have something in place soon that will let you download the episodes in MP4 and XviD (perhaps via the Internet Archive and/or ClearBits, so stay tuned).

In the meantime, with our first episode hosted on Vimeo, here is Dianne R. Carr offering her 1973 story (with a 1990 Copyright), "Dragon Days and Rabbit Ways," our first non–Buddhist episode. Something nice for the kids in your family — or just the kid in you:

Story ©1990 Dianne R. Carr.
Video ©2010 Dianne R. Carr / Promenade Digital [Mediaworks].

Creative Commons License
This work is released under a Creative Commons Attribution–Noncommercial–No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.

For the record, Dianne describes her opus as "a story about a dragon who finds what no flaming fury has ever revealed — his heart and his imagination."

It was recorded at the Central Park Dairy (a coffee shop inside the park), so please excuse the patrons.

Just press play and enjoy.

Wakey, wakey! Chop—OOPS!

A little I Can Have Cheezburger? action for your Sunday morning:

Courtesy Pet Holdings, Inc.

Because not every one is a morning… er, creature.

Horse vs. Toad — and may the best critter win

Do you like to watch a race? Wanna hear a good story about one race that will live on in the heart of humanity?

Splendid! Press the play button to bring yourself trackside for the already–classic match of "Horse and Toad," brought to you by your color commentators Diane Wolkstein and Joy Kelly Smith — themselves recorded live at a Mother's Day Benefit for Haiti (Sunday, 9 May) at New York City's Scandinavia House.

Oh, and did we mention that it's the Princess' hand in marriage to the victor?

On your mark… get set…

©2010 Diane Wolkstein / Cloudstone Productions.


Oh, and get ready for more Diane Wolkstein goodness this month!

(P.S.: "Already–classic," because the story appears in Diana's must–have collection The Magic Orange Tree and Other Haitian Folktales, which you can get at the link below.)

Thanks, Google, for the post date fix!

Just when your Projectionist was about to give up and abandon (or even delete) his own blog, Google has managed to fix the post date bug on their end, meaning that the post dates on this blog have been restored!

Plus… they've added a new template tool in their Blogger Dashboard which has helped make the blog a little more attractive. (I never did like the standard issue templates save for one I used to use but which wouldn't quite serve my purposes here.)

Just one more change is coming to the blog: Now that Promenade Digital [Mediaworks], my own little net–studio is spreading its ever growing wings (stronger, always stronger), you will be seeing more PD[M]–related posts — most featuring new Just One Story… episodes, yes, but hopefully there'll be other attractions to keep you glued to your monitor. Not to mention the occasional "behind the scenes" piece to show you what's going on in the video making process.

And, of course, when there's something too good to resist on YouTube, rest assured it will eventually wind up here for your viewing pleasure.

So with all that said, I apologize for the long and needless silence. We will now return you to your normal blogging at the point where it was interrupted.

On the hope that we won't be interrupted again. ;-)

March 6, 2010

Coming Attractions: Road, Movie

Your Projectionist is trying to restrain himself from seeing more masala movies at the multiplex due to a deadline for filing income tax returns, but do color me impressed by the images in this trailer for Dev Benegal's Road, Movie, which opened this week:

Courtesy The Indian Film Company, Fortissimo Films,
Studio 18, and August Entertainment.

Sadly, it didn't open on Long Island — the National Amusements multiplex near me chose Karthik Calling Karthik and Ashwani Dheer's comedy Atithi Tum Kab Jaoge? instead. So Road, Movie is now on my DVD list. At least it's there.

[UPDATE 2010.07.11: Because of the blogging troubles we were having, we couldn't mention the fact that it is now on an all–region Studio 18 DVD! Go get it!]

A new home for the blog?

Due to ongoing issues I seem to be having with posting on Blogger, there is the serious possibility that I will re–locate the blog — and perhaps re–focus it a little — by the end of the month. Since I now have a dedicated website for Promenade Digital [Mediaworks], it might be better having the blog there and retooling it to reflect what goes on at my new venture.

So while I work out the logistics, here's a short item from the Geethanjali video release Natya Manjari - Bharata Natyam. This actually is a complete short dance, and you might end up sufficiently intrigued to buy the full DVD for the rest. Geethanjali has one of the best line–up of Indian classical dance videos in the industry, and judging from the sample here, they really know their stuff.

© Super Audio (Madras) Pvt. Ltd.

I'll try to have more to say in a few days, if not weeks.

March 3, 2010

Dealing with instability

Sorry for the sudden template change, everyone. There were apparently major changes to Blogger that I wasn't aware of - such as the sudden loss of the post dates.

Bear with me while I try to figure out what happened and what can be done.

February 25, 2010

Copyright, the Saudi media, and you

Saudi television sevice KSA2's Faisal Alsaif takes on the matter of Copyright on this offering of his network's Up to Date:

©2010 KSA.

Look for Nina Paley (Sita Sings the Blues) as one of the guests (for those with little time on their hands, here is her segment).

January 23, 2010

A little favor to ask of you...

To cut to the chase:

That's right, folks. I now have a PayPal button. (No "what took you so long?" wisecracks, please.)

Up until now, I've never asked people for donations. The reason for the change is in three words: Promenade Digital [Mediaworks], my little hole–in–the–wall studio (and the force behind the Just One Story… series).

Promenade Digital [Mediaworks] exists by living within or beneath its means. I would like to build on what I've done thus far — and maybe even do feature–length masala movies if the spirit and imagination are up to it. The one issue is, of course, one of money. This is PD[M], not PBS, after all, and I have no corporate sugar daddies to speak of (and wouldn't want any to begin with). Your donations will make a huge difference in everything PD[M] does, whether its merely maintaining our website (kudos to our webhost Fat Cow, by the way) and this blog, or something bigger such as getting our Mac Mini repaired (and perhaps raising funds for an upgrade, hopefully to a more powerful iMac). All you do will help.

Just click on the button above to go straight to PayPal and donate whatever you feel capable of giving. As always with PayPal, your bank or card information is secure every step of the way, so give with confidence.

Thank you on behalf of my mouse–sized dream. May it become the mouse that roars.