early 2008

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Keith Haring painting a mural on Houston Street and Bowery in Manhattan, 1982.  

This was Keith’s first major outdoor mural. It became an instant downtown landmark after Keith painted it in the summer of 1982. The mural was up for only a few months in the summer of 1982 before it was painted out but its image remains imprinted in the memory of many people who were part of the downtown artist community in the early 1980s. 

In 2008 the Keith Haring Foundation, Goldman Properties and Deitch Projects recreated the mural using the extensive photographic documentation of the original work. The work was unveiled on May 4, 2008 the day that would have been Keith Haring’s 50th Birthday .

Keith’s former collaborater, graffiti artist Anel Oritz (LA II) contributed by tagging the wall and filling in the negative space with an intricate black interlocking pattern.

The recreation was on display until 2009.

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Jason Mills as the Phantom

His short run is still somewhat of a mystery. He had previously played Raoul and understudied the Phantom in the US Tour. When he took over as the principal Phantom from John Cudia in late 2007, it was reported he was a hard Phantom to catch. And by early 2008 he seemed to have disappeared alltogether.

Stephen Tweksbury was listed as the performing Phantom for some time, until Richard Todd Adams was presented as the new principal in June. Richard Todd Adams didn’t stay long with the tour either - he’s listed as principal from June to November 2008, until John Cudia returned.

im so proud of bigbang

and im proud to call myself a vip, in fact, i want to shout it from the rooftops because i couldn’t name another thing that has affected me in a such a profound and amazing way as bigbang has. watching that concert livestream and then seeing how everyone else feels just as excited and happy as i do is fucking amazing. bigbang have come so unbelievably far and achieved so much in their ten years of being a group and there really is not a single other group in the world even remotely like them. every song means something to so many of us, each in different ways to different people but we all have something in common and that is that we love bigbang, and it is that same love for them that unites us all to create a sort of unexplainable energy which is really fucking cool. i have so much to thank bigbang for, both as individuals and as a group, but i couldnt fit it all in one post so i just want to say, thank you vip and thank you BIGBANG!

Finding Nerdfighteria was easy. Finding /My Nerdfighteria/ took years, but it was worth the wait.

Late 2008 (early 9th grade)

I was reading Paper Towns, flipped to the dustcover, and saw the photo of John Green. You know the one - he’s sittting on the edge of a fountain, smiling like he is trying to hold the expression for a camera, doing some obvious manspreading, and (in my memory, although the photo seems to suggest otherwise) wearing argyle socks.

External image

Anyway, for some reason, I was intrigued because this is totally not your standard author photograph. I read the description and recall seeing that he was described as one half of the “Vlogbrothers,” whatever that meant.

I went online and looked it up, saw it was a youtube channel, and let it go for a bit.

Early 2009 (mid 9th grade)

I was in the library, looking for books to read, when I stumbled across Looking for Alaska. Seeing the title - and recalling that I liked Paper Towns - decided to get it.

I also remembered that there was something odd about the author - at least in the sense that he wasn’t only an author? - so I went online and googled him. The 2008 P4A had recently passed, so there was actually a decent amount on the Vlogbrothers.

I jumped in on the videos and watched, intrigued by the format and the intellectual level. After exhausting the new episodes, I spent about a week diving into the old videos.

I was engrossed with the ideas they were presenting about what it meant to be a nerd, what it meant to be a good human being, how to really think through queries and have civil discussions about hard topics, how to be silly enough and enthusiastic enough to have discussions on the most innocuous fandom topics.

I decided to follow these two people through, watching their videos as they came out - the first creators on youtube that I ever did that for.

But for the next few years, this was a lonely affair. No one in my friend group was too into them for whatever reason. It was really just me and my computer screen - sure there was a community on the other side of those comments, but I never really engaged with them in a way that made me feel like part of the community.

Summer 2011

I was at a pre-college program at the University of Rochester, and it was about 20 people + 6 RAs who I didn’t know. I decided to do an experiment.

I did this:

I figured it was artsy enough that if it didn’t work, I’d just be the strange artist for the next 2 weeks, but if it did work, I would find another nerdfighter and all of their beliefs.

It did, in fact, work: Multiple RAs and a few of the other high schoolers in the program recognized it, and we had a fun, nerdy time those two weeks. The RAs decided it appropriate to give us butterbeer in the lounge. They introduced us to Quidditch. Two of these people became close friends, who I keep in touch with today. 

I eventually went to UofR because of the nerdiness I found, expecting to find some more that was lacking in my high school.

Fall 2012 (Freshman year)

I repeated by experiment during the 3rd-ish day of orientation (the photo above is actually the documentation of this event).

It sat there for a bit, but it was a large hall - about 50 people - so there was a lot of ambiguity regarding who could possibly have drawn the mysterious Pizza John in the lounge. But not too many people got it, so the circulation was easy enough to trace to find out who was interested in finding the culprit.

When I outed myself as the artist to them, we had some fun conversations on various fandoms of the time - I want to say Doctor Who, Sherlock, Harry Potter, etc. - as well as discovering we were all the same major (coincidentally, conveniently).

In the end, I founded my core friend group of my undergrad years, not simply because we shared similar interests in media and academia, but also because we just clicked in a way that felt natural because of our shared values. Nerdfighteria has meant for me - a system of values and inquiries, a striving to see wonder and complexity and empathy in other people, a yearning to understand.

via @gelunnucifera

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Footage from the 1997 Saturn Power No.1 demo disc of the unreleased Saturn game Fighting Force. It’s unclear how far the game was in development when it was canned, but in 2008 an early build of the Saturn version was leaked. If you’ve played the PlayStation version it’s easy to why the game might have been canned on the Saturn. Still the real time rendered demo is impressive for the time, the Core Design demo disc was given away with issue one of Saturn Power and also included demos of Tomb Raider, Blam! Machinehead and Swagman. Note the demo shows footage from two short sections then just repeats them, it’s rolling only and you cannot control the characters.

Just read that the US stock market is about to collapse tomorrow because of the Brexit. All of our markets are about to drop 4-5% in the morning according to current predictions. That’s not far below the early days of the 2008 collapse. And that’s going to somehow be blamed on Obama, which is not good for the Democrats in November. The UK’s fascists kind of just fucked over the entire world.

Anthony Morley: The cannibal chef

England, 2008:

Anthony Morley, 36, a chef who worked in top restaurants, was seemingly confused about his sexuality and had been for quite some time. In the early 90s, he won the title of Mr Gay UK, despite denying that he was homosexual. This appeared to feed into his tumultuous and odd relationships with other men, including coming at one boyfriend with a meat cleaver.

By early 2008, he became involved with Damian Oldfield (33) in some capacity. Morley apparently told Oldfield that he wanted their relationship to move slowly, and that same day he cooked a meal for the two of them. Following that, they cuddled and watched the film Brokeback Mountain. At some point in the night, after waking up, Morley slashed Oldfield’s throat and stabbed him repeatedly. Later, he went to a nearby restaurant covered in blood and claimed he had killed someone who tried to rape him.

At his house, investigators found the signs of a much darker, stranger story. Morley had cut sections from Oldfield’s body, seasoned them the way one would a steak or piece of chicken, and then attempted to cook them. Some of the flesh showed chew marks.

Morley claimed that he committed the murder because he had woken up to Oldfield sexually molesting him. The prosecutor, Andrew Stubbs, claimed that Morley did this out of hatred for his own sexuality.

Morley was tried and sentenced to 30 years.

(Photo from BBC)

The signs as strange youtube meme songs

Aries - The Duck Song , 23 March 2009

Taurus - Taking the Hobbits to Isengard , 11 May 2006

Gemini - Cows With Guns , 30 May 2006

Cancer - Russian Unicorn , 11 July 2011

Leo - Why is the rum gone? , 11 August 2007

Virgo - Mean Kitty , 5 September, 2007

Libra - The Gummy Bear Song , 9 October 2007

Scorpio -  HEYYEYAAEYAAAEYAEYAA , 7 November 2010

Sagittarius - Jizz in my pants , 6 December 2008

Capricorn - Look at my horse , 14 January 2012

Aquarius - The Hamsterdance Song , 3 Feb 2009

Pisces - Trololo , 6 March 2010


For everyone - That’s Your Horoscope For Today , 3 June 2008  (Inc early mention of the Ebola virus!)

(THE ABOVE VIDEO HAS FLASHING COLOURS SO EPILEPSY WARNING)

“Found one of my old journals. From right around the time we were heading out on tour with NFG in the UK early 2008. I started reading it and couldn’t help but cry a little bit. ‘Cause that person was really confused. And very lost. And as it went on, the person behind the pen seemed to get a little bit stronger.. that part felt good. It was the reminder that I needed that right now I’m as strong as ever. There really isn’t a point to telling you all of this. Except maybe I want to thank you. ‘Cause you are a constant reminder. That I’m not as lost as I once was.”

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Here’s a pretty relevant throwback to MGMT’s breakout moment - their first performance on David Letterman, which launched them into popularity in early 2008. It’s the band’s original live lineup, with James on drums and Hank on guitar, and features their famous capes.

mbc fm4u - noon song of hope ♡ 160531

during f(x)’s luna’s guest appearance on the show today, kim shin young mentioned how, back when she was doing shim shim tapa with super junior’s shindong years ago (back in early 2008, most likely), he told her that two amazing singers were set to come out of sm soon. those two singers were luna and jonghyun. (source: hamsoonie)

I first read White Noise while touring the first Vampire Weekend album in late 2007-early 2008. What struck me then, as it does now, is the way the fear of death and consumerism mix throughout the book. Jack lays up at night wondering if he or his wife Babette will die first. Orest Mercator points out that more people are dead at this moment in time than ever before in history. A pair of elderly siblings presumed dead turn out to have been stuck in a mall for four days, overwhelmed by the modern shopping experience. From time to time there will be a paragraph break and Jack will just list consumer items like Selson Blue and the Toyota Celica. The brand names take on a prayer-like quality.

The idea of “brain fade” comes up at one point—minds not working correctly on account of the constant bombardment of information. I’ve spent days of my life surfing the internet, clicking links and opening tabs, often retaining very little. I don’t think I’m alone in this. Do I waste time in the moment because I’m unaware of my mortality or because I’m aware of my mortality and don’t want to think about it? Even though White Noise is a pre-Internet book, it feels very ‘now’ to me.

I love all the bits about Dylar, the pill that’s meant to cure the fear of death. Towards the end of the book we meet Mr. Gray, project manager of the drug, now addicted to the pills. And what is this guy who has no fear of death wearing? A pair of bermuda shorts covered in Budweiser logos. Incredible!
—  –Chris Baio on Don DeLillo’s White Noise +