Sunday, September 10, 2006

Books and Lonely Girls

"Now that all your worry has proved such an unlucrative business,
why not find a better job?"


I grew up in Southern California in the 60's and 70's, and the music that was being created in both the northern and southern parts of the state at that time is still being listened to many decades to later. Out of Laurel Canyon came the Byrds, Joni Mitchell, Frank Zappa, Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, The Eagles, The Doors, and well, you get the idea... And up in the (SF) Bay Area were icons such as The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Santana, Grace Slick, and The Sons of Champlin. A new book reviewed on NPR details the life of the Laurel Canyon (LA) crowd and the special sound that came from that time and place. It seems like a long time ago, but oh, so much fun to hear about again.

Back to the present, if you are the festival type, the Burning Man is one of the biggest still in existence in the Golden State, and a webcam captures all the action of that now famous creation in the desert that appears and disappears in the space of a couple of weeks, full of music and art.

But back here in New Zealand, I have the Going West Books and Writers Literary Festival out in the beautiful Waitakere Mountains next weekend, which is focused on local writing talent, of which we have plenty. Many of the same authors have appeared this year in The Book Show, a weekly TV show my daughter helped produce. We watched the last episode of the first series together last night in a weekend of torrential Spring rain. I enjoyed seeing her name roll by in the credits, which must be a "dad" thing.

After that, I will have to get out to the island pretty quickly, as another speaker from out of the country is spending time with us imparting informative sustainable investing advice. Catherine Austin Fitts of Solari will be speaking on Waiheke after doing some work in Wellington and other parts of the country with Scoop. A old friend of mine Anais Starr of The Center in Montana is in NZ assisting her, and I look forward to showing them some kiwi hospitality, "Waiheke" style.

And as always, to finish on a another shining example in cyberspace of what author Henry Jenkins calls "convergence culture": the online diary of "Lonely Girl 15", has been described by the New York Times in this article as the "birth of a new art form." I am not sure I would go that far, but the experiment by some art students with a series of You Tube videos that chronicles the life and loves of a young woman had the internet abuzz as to whether it was real or just some marketing hype. Does it really matter? Cute girl, cute stories, well edited, and I say, go for it.
And have fun doing it, whatever it is called(Just don't start with the product placements..PLEASE).
And now I know for sure what all those people sitting in offices are doing behind their computers all day!

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