Justin Hall's personal site growing & breaking down since 1994

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7 march

with the family at home is fun -
i'm not the only one that's older,
but every one is more mellow.

george believes in amortization -
equalling in return the amount he paid for anything, any investment.

he just made some major improvements to his teeth, redoing his jaw and putting in caps and things, at the age of 78, so he and my mom have worked out that george's funeral will be open casket, open mouth to make the most of the recent improvements.


mom prints out and looks over my thesis, suggests two things that i implement right off the bat
one, an outline, providing some direction and overview. that's helpful for me, and i'm not stuck on the notion that the presentation of the thesis has to be absolutely nonlinear.
the other is a guide to reading it, which we come up with after she quite clearly can't figure out what is a quote, what isn't, why there are few capital letters,

i posted on the capital letters thing yesserday, suffice to say that wayne's words have swayed me some. i think lower case letters are appropriate for informal communication - so many people writing on the net use them. for speed? for softness of speech? anyways, this is a more formal document, even than some of my web pages. i'm not going to fight that either. so i'm phasing in capital letters gradually, starting with quotes and citations and proper nouns.

then my mom offers corrections along the lines of grammer and spelling. i have to laugh at these - it appears as though my rule in spelling is i after e except after c
and somehow i respect myself more for not using a spellcheck.
she doesn't jibe with made up words - i leave some of them and correct the vowel shifts.

mom printed out my paper in internet explorer. i don't have a copy of that on my harddrive right now (only netscape 3.04). even my basic text tags look different in ie, it's kind of a little distracting. i like the way my things look in netscape, but i've made some style corrections to alleviate ie confusion.

hairy html

geek talk:

using <h3><dd>text</h3>

like this

looks indented and h3-ed in netscape as it should,
in internet explorer it looks bold and indented and somehow sucks the text immediately following into that h3 style so that for a full paragraph or two until there's a text style change, all the text is bold and stuff. ug.

(so i used font size, tt, and blockquote instead - it looks better anyways)

my other issue concerns <br> <dd>

which is a staple of my web writing,

you see, for things relating to ideas above but somehow sub

ie seems to treat each of <br> and <dd> as a line break so it's like having used a <p> then <dd> in netscape.

i would write a formal letter of protest if i get excited enough about it.

otherwise i'm flying to san francisco now, writing my web page,
it's fun to compute on a plane - it's like a communications vacuum where you have only your computer and your thoughts
especially since only 21 of 147 seats on this plane are taken up - must be cuz i'm flying the 2nd to last chicago -> san francisco on a saturday night.

in san francisco i'll love amy, work with howard (some on my thesis, some on his web site, some walking in marin), see a broad or narrow exciting range of weird wonderful friends, and i have a job interview or two. primarily one job interview is with some folks who are starting a cable channel devoted to computers, they might want me to be an on screen talking person. i thought about it some, and rather than "wally the wacky web guy" as wilson said i could be if i abandoned "integrity," i think i'd like to do pointed, poignant or just funny essayish stuff about the net, technology or maybe just feng shui.

so i had decided i was going to use this airplane time to brainstorm possible essay topics, which i would speak to on air, and then write about for their web site.

before i got on the plane, i ate in greek town (george says, "justin, you want greek food?" - it's like a tradition. chicago has some of the best greek food i've ever eaten (right up there with greece maybe), and george and mom eat in greek town weekly, so i don't bother to dream up alternatives. every once in a while i'll make them take me to arun's, some family run funky thai food, or if george is out of town mom and i will go to a less mediterranian place.

so i went to santorini, the height of greektown refinement (no shots of ouzo being consumed with shouting) where eating with george is like being in with the greek mafia. he's an old patriarch, speaks greek, has his own table, knows everyone, a new waiter is introduced to him, where's he from. george likes dimitri, the oldest waiter in the place, he remembers us and gives us the same stuff, yadda yadda. george just signs the check and they send him a bill now and then.

at santorini, i either order fish, which george has every time, or lamb maybe. mom orders chicken, and some vegetarians might order the spinach pie. but each time i go, i get taramousalada, fish roe to spread on greek bread, and fried zuccini with skordalia, a greek potato and garlic power dip that goes great with the fried stuff and the bread and the roe. so after that i'm thinkin', do i have the fish because it's lighter and a greater luxury (whole sea bass or red snapper, grilled - too expensive mostly for me to order on my own) or do i order lamb chops because they're the richest and another thing i'm not going to afford on my own? well, tonight i decided on the lamb chops, one of which arrived purple and both of which tasted like pure meateating sin. gosh it was something i had to raise my head and thank the lamb, though that is a hollow gesture. this was the height of meat, seasoning just right, tender flesh, blood, enough saltiness, good dandelion greens side dish (horta) and tomato cooked green beans

quantum birdi felt like an indulgent animal-unfriendly sinner, because the food was so perfectly pitched as to cause me to eat most all of my chops (what mom didn't try and some fat i left untouched), a third of george's fish including the head because the cheeks have the best meat, some of mom's chicken, dandelion greens, green beans, bread, appetizers. i could have eaten forever, and it's because the food was so sumptuous somehow that it inspired me to continue to enjoy what was provided beyond the point of sufficiency.

i'm thinking more about the death of animals, and struggling with the fact that some say fish don't count, because of sitting next to giridhar yesserday, who never eats meat, fish neither, because he is a brahmin upper class indian and they have compassion for animals or somestuff. that really gets to me - having feelings for animals like not wanting their life to be lived for my consumption because eating meat in america is endorsing the factory farm. and even if they were free ranging muttons, happy baaaahing about, i then eat their killed flesh? why should i care? meat tastes good. and i'm grateful! yeah right.

i like the animal energy!


anyways, i occasionally feel, when i'm acting vegetarian, that i don't get enough umph in my diet. maybe it's because i ate too many double cheeseburgers as an adolescent. but i think meat eating is problematic. so i'm undecided.

anyways, one thing for sure, massive doses of meat laden food make me sleepy so i had three seats to myself and passed right the heck out on this abandoned plane, instead of watching "flubber"

now i wake and contemplate myself, the talking head.

i want to read essays online. media/web criticism. i'd like to someday do interviews as well. i originally offered to teach about the web on tv, be like the pbs oil painting guy, but i think that's a ways off, from their format the way they have it.

basically, i know i could do a good half hour of tv a week, at least, i've got great funny friends and stories to tell and teaching and etc. i'm not sure how i feel about the medium, so i figure this will be a good way to find out.

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