Ray Bradbury, RIP

2d6ce202945x1000.jpg Ray Bradbury, RIP words school ray bradbury pink people peace night moon film family country comic college chinese

An excerpt from Bradbury’s finest novel, Fahrenheit 451. The author died yesterday, June 5.

“When did it all start, you ask, this job of ours, how did it come about, where, when? Well, I’d say it really got started around about a thing called the Civil War. Even though our rule-book claims it was founded earlier. The fact is we didn’t get along well until photography came into its own. Then — motion pictures in the early twentieth century. Radio. Television. Things began to have mass.”
Montag sat in bed, not moving.
“And because they had mass, they became simpler,” said Beatty. “Once, books appealed to a few people, here, there, everywhere. They could afford to be different. The world was roomy. But then the world got full of eyes and elbows and mouths. Double, triple, quadruple population. Films and radios, magazines, books levelled down to a sort of paste pudding norm, do you follow me?”
“I think so.”
Beatty peered at the smoke pattern he had put out on the air. “Picture it. Nineteenth-century man with his horses, dogs, carts, slow motion. Then, in the twentieth century, speed up your camera. Books cut shorter. Condensations. Digests. Tabloids. Everything boils down to the gag, the snap ending.”
“Classics cut to fit fifteen-minute radio shows, then cut again to fill a two-minute book column, winding up at last as a ten- or twelve-line dictionary resume. I exaggerate, of course. The dictionaries were for reference. But many were those whose sole knowledge of Hamlet (you know the title certainly, Montag; it is probably only a faint rumour of a title to you, Mrs. Montag) whose sole knowledge, as I say, of Hamlet was a one-page digest in a book that claimed: ‘now at least you can read all the classics; keep up with your neighbours.’ Do you see? Out of the nursery into the college and back to the nursery; there’s your intellectual pattern for the past five centuries or more.”
“Speed up the film, Montag, quick. Click? Pic? Look, Eye, Now, Flick, Here, There, Swift, Pace, Up, Down, In, Out, Why, How, Who, What, Where, Eh? Uh! Bang! Smack! Wallop, Bing, Bong, Boom! Digest-digests, digest-digest-digests. Politics? One column, two sentences, a headline! Then, in mid-air, all vanishes! Whirl man’s mind around about so fast under the pumping hands of publishers, exploiters, broadcasters, that the centrifuge flings off all unnecessary, time-wasting thought!”
“School is shortened, discipline relaxed, philosophies, histories, languages dropped, English and spelling gradually neglected, finally almost completely ignored. Life is immediate, the job counts, pleasure lies all about after work. Why learn anything save pressing buttons, pulling switches, fitting nuts and bolts?”
“The zipper displaces the button and a man lacks just that much time to think while dressing at dawn, a philosophical hour, and thus a melancholy hour.”
“Life becomes one big pratfall, Montag; everything bang, boff, and wow!”
“Empty the theatres save for clowns and furnish the rooms with glass walls and pretty colours running up and down the walls like confetti or blood or sherry or sauterne. You like baseball, don’t you, Montag?”
“Baseball’s a fine game.”
Beatty went on, “You like bowling, don’t you, Montag?”
“Bowling, yes.”
“And golf?”
“Golf is a fine game.”
“Basketball?”
“A fine game.”
“Billiards, pool? Football?”
“Fine games, all of them.”
“More sports for everyone, group spirit, fun, and you don’t have to think, eh? Organize and organize and superorganize super-super sports. More cartoons in books. More pictures. The mind drinks less and less. Impatience. Highways full of crowds going somewhere, somewhere, somewhere, nowhere. The gasoline refugee. Towns turn into motels, people in nomadic surges from place to place, following the moon tides, living tonight in the room where you slept this noon and I the night before.”
“Now let’s take up the minorities in our civilization, shall we? Bigger the population, the more minorities. Don’t step on the toes of the dog-lovers, the cat-lovers, doctors, lawyers, merchants, chiefs, Mormons, Baptists, Unitarians, second-generation Chinese, Swedes, Italians, Germans, Texans, Brooklynites, Irishmen, people from Oregon or Mexico. The people in this book, this play, this TV serial are not meant to represent any actual painters, cartographers, mechanics anywhere. The bigger your market, Montag, the less you handle controversy, remember that! All the minor minor minorities with their navels to be kept clean. Authors, full of evil thoughts, lock up your typewriters. They did. Magazines became a nice blend of vanilla tapioca. Books, so the damned snobbish critics said, were dishwater. No wonder books stopped selling, the critics said. But the public, knowing what it wanted, spinning happily, let the comic books survive. And the three-dimensional sex-magazines, of course. There you have it, Montag. It didn’t come from the Government down. There was no dictum, no declaration, no censorship, to start with, no! Technology, mass exploitation, and minority pressure carried the trick, thank God. Today, thanks to them, you can stay happy all the time, you are allowed to read comics, the good old confessions, or trade journals.”
“Yes, but what about the firemen, then?” asked Montag.
“Ah.” Beatty leaned forward in the faint mist of smoke from his pipe. “What more easily explained and natural? With school turning out more runners, jumpers, racers, tinkerers, grabbers, snatchers, fliers, and swimmers instead of examiners, critics, knowers, and imaginative creators, the word ‘intellectual,’ of course, became the swear word it deserved to be. You always dread the unfamiliar. Surely you remember the boy in your own school class who was exceptionally ‘bright,’ did most of the reciting and answering while the others sat like so many leaden idols, hating him. And wasn’t it this bright boy you selected for beatings and tortures after hours? Of course it was. We must all be alike. Not everyone born free and equal, as the Constitution says, but everyone made equal. Each man the image of every other; then all are happy, for there are no mountains to make them cower, to judge themselves against. So! A book is a loaded gun in the house next door. Burn it. Take the shot from the weapon. Breach man’s mind. Who knows who might be the target of the well-read man? Me? I won’t stomach them for a minute. And so when houses were finally fireproofed completely, all over the world (you were correct in your assumption the other night) there was no longer need of firemen for the old purposes. They were given the new job, as custodians of our peace of mind, the focus of our understandable and rightful dread of being inferior; official censors, judges, and executors. That’s you, Montag, and that’s me.”
Beatty knocked his pipe into the palm of his pink hand, studied the ashes as if they were a symbol to be diagnosed and searched for meaning.
“You must understand that our civilization is so vast that we can’t have our minorities upset and stirred. Ask yourself, What do we want in this country, above all? People want to be happy, isn’t that right? Haven’t you heard it all your life? I want to be happy, people say. Well, aren’t they? Don’t we keep them moving, don’t we give them fun? That’s all we live for, isn’t it? For pleasure, for titillation? And you must admit our culture provides plenty of these.”
“Yes.”
“Coloured people don’t like Little Black Sambo. Burn it. White people don’t feel good about Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Burn it. Someone’s written a book on tobacco and cancer of the lungs? The cigarette people are weeping? Burn the book. Serenity, Montag. Peace, Montag. Take your fight outside. Better yet, into the incinerator. Funerals are unhappy and pagan? Eliminate them, too. Five minutes after a person is dead he’s on his way to the Big Flue, the Incinerators serviced by helicopters all over the country. Ten minutes after death a man’s a speck of black dust. Let’s not quibble over individuals with memoriams. Forget them. Burn them all, burn everything. Fire is bright and fire is clean.”
“There was a girl next door,” he said, slowly. “She’s gone now, I think, dead. I can’t even remember her face. But she was different. How — how did she happen?”
Beatty smiled. “Here or there, that’s bound to occur. Clarisse McClellan? We’ve a record on her family. We’ve watched them carefully. Heredity and environment are funny things. You can’t rid yourselves of all the odd ducks in just a few years. The home environment can undo a lot you try to do at school. That’s why we’ve lowered the kindergarten age year after year until now we’re almost snatching them from the cradle. We had some false alarms on the McClellans, when they lived in Chicago. Never found a book. Uncle had a mixed record; anti-social. The girl? She was a time bomb. The family had been feeding her subconscious, I’m sure, from what I saw of her school record. She didn’t want to know how a thing was done, but why. That can be embarrassing. You ask Why to a lot of things and you wind up very unhappy indeed, if you keep at it. The poor girl’s better off dead.”
“Luckily, queer ones like her don’t happen, often. We know how to nip most of them in the bud, early. You can’t build a house without nails and wood. If you don’t want a house built, hide the nails and wood. If you don’t want a man unhappy politically, don’t give him two sides to a question to worry him; give him one. Better yet, give him none. Let him forget there is such a thing as war. If the Government is inefficient, top-heavy, and tax-mad, better it be all those than that people worry over it. Peace, Montag. Give the people contests they win by remembering the words to more popular songs or the names of state capitals or how much corn Iowa grew last year. Cram them full of non-combustible data, chock them so damned full of ‘facts’ they feel stuffed, but absolutely ‘brilliant’ with information. Then they’ll feel they’re thinking, they’ll get a sense of motion without moving. And they’ll be happy, because facts of that sort don’t change. Don’t give them any slippery stuff like philosophy or sociology to tie things up with. That way lies melancholy. Any man who can take a TV wall apart and put it back together again, and most men can nowadays, is happier than any man who tries to slide-rule, measure, and equate the universe, which just won’t be measured or equated without making man feel bestial and lonely. I know, I’ve tried it; to hell with it. So bring on your clubs and parties, your acrobats and magicians, your dare-devils, jet cars, motor-cycle helicopters, your sex and heroin, more of everything to do with automatic reflex. If the drama is bad, if the film says nothing, if the play is hollow, sting me with the theremin, loudly. I’ll think I’m responding to the play, when it’s only a tactile reaction to vibration. But I don’t care. I just like solid entertainment.”

From The Citrus Report

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Flights of Genius featuring Stephen “ESPO” Powers

“Ogilvy & Mather New York and Joshua Liner Gallery unveil a series of commissioned murals by celebrated artist Stephen Powers that reinterpret the words and quotes of agency founder David Ogilvy.

Power’s bold graphic style, reminiscent of vintage advertising illustrations puts a unique emphasis on famous Ogilvy sayings and transforms them into actionable words designed to inspire the viewer. Painted in bright colors on the North stairwell of the agency’s headquarters office, the murals run from the first to the 11th floor of the office building.”

From The Citrus Report

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Clark Gable was a scandalous man

b043b6a197ure 36.jpg Clark Gable was a scandalous man words swarthy pirate romantic lead new generation mustache image hairpin gable flash clark gable citrus report bastard

Clark Gable was a bad, bad man. Loved to sleep around, didn’t give a shit . . . he was dirty, but got what he wanted… he was a fucking man of a man. Loved his ladies. Maybe even his men, we don’t know, but what we do know is that MGM covered up much of his scandalous ways.

According to the Hairpin, “Clark Gable married five times, slept with nearly all of his co-stars, and cheated on everyone. In just about every movie in which he plays the romantic lead, he cajoles, spanks, slaps, or otherwise mistreats the object of his affection. In other words, he’s a bastard, but he’s one steamy bastard. And he challenged the image of the leading man in 1930s Hollywood, offering a barrel-chested alternative to the fleet-footed likes of Fred Astaire and Cary Grant. He looked very much as if someone had taken a swarthy pirate, given him a facial, parted his hair to the side, trimmed his mustache, and put him in tails. Years before Brando popularized the menace and gravitas that characterized a new generation of male stars, there was Gable, and shit did he smolder.”

From The Citrus Report

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Roger Ebert didn’t like “Battle: Los Angeles”

9da210720evie 11.jpg Roger Ebert didn’t like “Battle: Los Angeles” world words The Citrus Report roger ebert its makers flash video flash fingernails culture battle: los angeles angeles

“Battle: Los Angeles” is noisy, violent, ugly and stupid. violent, ugly and stupid. Its manufacture is a reflection of appalling cynicism on the part of its makers, who don’t even try to make it more than senseless chaos. Here’s a science-fiction film that’s an insult to the words “science” and “fiction,” and the hyphen in between them. You want to cut it up to clean under your fingernails.” That is what Roger Ebert thinks about the new sci-fi, end of the world, disaster movie.

From The Citrus Report

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Gene Davis

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Born in Washington D.C. Gene Davis spent most of his life there and worked as a sportswriter and later as a White House Correspondent. He was a completely self taught artist who began painting when he was 29 and was inspired by visiting the Washington Workshop. Most known for his large scale vertical lines Davis says:

“…look at the painting in terms of individual colors. In other words, instead of simply glancing at the work, select a specific color such as yellow or a lime green, and take the time to see how it operates across the painting. Approached this way, something happens, I can’t explain it. But one must enter the painting through the door of a single color. And then, you can understand what my painting is all about.”

–Gene Davis in an interview with Donald Wall, in Donald Wall, ed., Gene Davis

Davis’s work can be seen in the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Guggenheim Museum

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Facebook thinks you’ll break up before Spring Break

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Facebook says you will be over it by Spring. As Time Magazine reports, “David McCandless, a bespectacled British designer and author, gave a TED talk in July in Oxford on data visualization, his specialty. Working with information guru Lee Byron he scraped more than 10,000 status updates of apparently privacy averse Facebook users for the words “break up” or “broken up.” And he found some distinct patterns in Dumpsville.”

Why bother even talking or touching people anymore? You get bed bugs and then you break up via Facebook.

Read more: http://healthland.time.com/2010/11/02/facebook-says-youll-break-up-before-spring-break/#ixzz14C0mRfQa

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The Best Idea on the internet: Pay Weezer $10 million to break up

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8a8b626807weezer.jpg The Best Idea on the internet: Pay Weezer $10 million to break up words weezer support sucks rivers cuomo News money million dollars daddy citrus report brothers $10 million

James Burns has come up with an ingenious way to try and finally force the band Weezer to quit sucking: pay them $10 million dollars to shut up.  He needs your support…  In his words:

I have never been a fan of this band. I think that they are pretty much horrible, and always have been. Even in the early 90’s.

But this isn’t about me. This is about the Weezer fans. They are our brothers and sisters, our friends, our lovers.

Every year, Rivers Cuomo swears that he’s changed, and that their new album is the best thing that he’s done since “Pinkerton,” and what happens? Another pile of crap like “Beverly Hills” or “I’m Your Daddy.”

This is an abusive relationship, and it needs to stop now.

I am tired of my friends being disappointed year after year.

I am tired of endless whimsical cutesy album covers and music videos.

I’m sick of hearing about whatever this terrible (and yes, even if you like the early stuff, you should be able to admit that they are wretched now) excuse for a band is up to these days.

If all 852,000 of you (really?) who bought “Pinkerton” pitch in $12, we will meet our goal.

I beg you, Weezer. Take our money and disappear.

To donate click here

For The Strangers interview / article / and Weezer’s response about the whole thing click here

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AIST’s HRP4, the home robot maid we always wanted. Humans are now pointless

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d89349e41405x381.jpg AIST’s HRP4, the home robot maid we always wanted. Humans are now pointless words totally put toilet robot most humans love things humans are pointless humanoid machine hanging out embed type ball guns aist

We love things that use the words “humanoid machine.” That is what you are looking at, a humanoid machine to totally put most humans out of work, and really make humans less important. Seriously, who needs humans when you can have your very own HRP4 hanging out, shooting paint ball guns with you? Or cleaning the toilet.

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