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A thousand fibers connect us 
Greetings from my shed...
The war in Ukraine happened exactly four years to the day since I took the above photo from my hotel in Kiev. I really like Ukraine and it’s people.
At time of writing I’ve managed to avoid most of the news and will catch up tonight. Apologies if something in the following dispatch seems insensitive or badly timed. I find it’s always best to wait till later in the day before you expose yourself to more feelings of frustration and sadness. No idea if the world is still just wagging its finger at Putin thinking it will make a difference.
There will of course be a variety of links below. Some of which I curated before everything kicked off. If you came here looking for escape I hope you can still find it. I don’t want to ignore the elephant in the room. Or the mad dog on the loose. I have Ukrainian blood and family still out there so I am feeling a little more powerless than usual.
Despite everything else falling apart, some lovely things happened this week.
I did a workshop funded by Anatomical Concepts that connected me to some amazing people. It was not a workshop on how to edit, we were focusing on creativity and narrative strategy. But at the end of the planned session I did a quick demo of what you could do with iMovie. Great to see the results hitting the feeds a little while later.
Another moment from the week involved a wonderful chat via the app Dialup with a retired lady from Canada. We discussed captured stories and how she had been asked by her children and grand children to write some of her stories down but never got round to it.
As a former archivist and translator she well knew the importance of such things, but not in the context of her own life stories. She wrote:
“…Our exchange on the importance of preserving our memories on durable systems for future generations made me reflect and realize I need to stop procrastinating and leave something durable for my children and granddaughters...”
This was my response…
I too am glad you picked up. That was the first call I have picked up in days and you have fortified my feelings that this app that allows serendipity farming is a force for good.
I’m also glad you have a new project. Reminiscing and curating your thoughts in order to preserve them for future generations.
The archived audio and text moments I have from family long gone are very precious to me. I know they are just things. But they are things that bring insight through experience. Little reflections of living.
Enjoy the process. I am sure your grandchildren will love the seeds you sew in their minds. Thank you for the email.
Please stay in touch.
I live for these moments. Where connections can be made by instantaneous electric bridges, linking minds and sharing understanding. As the philosopher William James said “We are like islands in the sea, separate on the surface but connected in the deep.”
Not everything you do will work. A lot of it won’t work. But all the failures are steppingstones and might even come into their own.
The ending of this short video is quite satisfying.
It’s almost 15 years since I made this low resolution video with terrible sound. Am I selling it?
According to the Wayback Machine, the website Alf mentions was wound up in 2016 and the content moved to Freegan.info The old URL has now been taken over by someone else. I wonder where Alf is now. I was reminded of this video as this month is apparently Freegan February.
After reading this from Gia I had to stand in the high resolution rain, looking up to experience the full bitrate on my face.
I have a suitcase of journals I’d like to write up. There’s a lot of reliving to be had in those pages.
I just had a flick through the Midori notebook you can see (on the left with the red band). I used it throughout 2014 before I switched to a brown copy of the same style. (video with more detail here). Opening it revealed all kinds of random notes, recipes, songs and poems I wrote. Plus thoughts I’ve since forgotten. I shall drop snippets into this email.
I find it interesting that my friends who don’t journal appear to remember more about my past than I do. Perhaps this article entitled ‘Note apps are where ideas go to die’ is right when it opens with “We don’t write things down to remember them. We write them down to forget.”
Perhaps this email itself is a permission slip to let things go.
I found the title of the following song written in the Midori notebook. It was on a page entitled ‘Boston Playlist’ and as the title suggests was a song listened to while exploring the city of Boston.
Who will look after your computerised body parts when there are no more firmware updates? Some interesting thoughts from this episode of Digital Planet.
Will you be supporting your local record store on April 23rd?
I may support Vinyl Revival UK. They have a list of releases on their site.
There appears to have been a huge rise in record prices over the last two years. I’m definitely seeing some records I bought three years ago costing double if not more now. This might be pressing costs, supply and demand, Brexit, plus covid etc.
As the stock market plummets the overall worth of my vinyl (According to Discogs) appears to be rising. Perhaps we need to be investing in our record collections.
It was dark when I rolled into the truck stop. Security lights reflected in the wet road and I wondered how many weary drivers had clocked the lone electric car rolling though. It must have looked like I was casing the rows of fully loaded articulated trailers. In a way I was. I was looking out for someone.
As I got to the end of the row, a dark figure stepped out from between two lorries carrying something heavy in their arms. It was my father-in-law cradling a large tray. In trying not to look suspicious, he looked extra suspicious. A truck pulled up behind my car and the lights shone though my windows illuminating everything.
He would have clearly seen me step out to take the tray and place it onto the backseat of my car. The tray was filled with fat blueberries and anyone looking on might think these were being pilfered from the back of a lorry.
They were in fact samples that had served their purpose and were gifted by an Eastern European trucker to my Father in Law.
He was given quite a few trays. But these were ours. Twenty punnets in all. After having them with breakfast, in smoothies, in a pie and giving some away, thay lasted a good six days.
I found this recipe in the Midori notebook.
Manic Miner popped up in conversation this week and I discovered this video interview with Matthew Smith the guy that coded it. It was made 20 years after Manic Miner was a hit. I love his quote “Five years after I did it I was a washout, ten years after I did it, I was history. Coming up to twenty years now and I’m, a legend.”
We are approaching the 40th anniversary of Manic Miner so expect more stuff like this as people like me continue to reminisce around the tech we once obsessed over. Here is a longer video covering much more.
Apart from the ‘peace on Earth and good will to all’ kind of stuff what are you looking forward to?
I have rented a motorbike.
I know I have a motorbike. But this one is in LA. It’s a BMWS 1000R Here is a video review of it. I aim to pick it up from an address on Sunset BLVD and then join the Hells Nerds for a ride around California. Right now it sounds too good to be true.
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The US is unmasking Russian Hackers faster than ever.
Welcoming Madeline to the Documentally community map.
Between making time for more gaming or more reading I’d certainly go for reading. And the cost of Playstation’s online tiers has me thinking it’s the right choice.
Twitter admits it mistakenly removed Ukraine open source intelligence accounts.
‘In times like these, it’s vital to manage our media diet’
One day I’d like to tell you about my great aunt Galya. She lived in a village not far out of Sumy in the North East of Ukraine. When I say not far, I had to take a bus for a bit and then they picked me up in a horse and cart.
She died in 2018 aged 99. She was still growing, harvesting and preserving all her own food into her 90’s. I’m proud to have the same blood in my veins. Even if all I’m managing to grow right now is my seemingly immortal peyote.
I have no work booked next week so either subscribe and i’ll make it worth your while or let someone who might need training in video/audio production, o
“I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” ~ Albert Einstein
See you out there.