Monday, April 24, 2017

'Secret Transmissions' podcast

Jeff Wolfe 

I downloaded the Occulture podcast interview with Jeff Wolfe of Secret Transmissions and enjoyed it immensely.

Jeff talks about his exploration of Ohio burial mounds, how he became interested in the occult, why he went from zine publishing to starting up a blog, his favorite horror movies and how Robert Anton Wilson influences much of what he does. Ryan Peverly is the interviewer and has good rapport with Jeff.

It's pretty long, about 90 minutes. Should be available for the various podcast phone apps. Some of the other Occulture podcasts look interesting, too.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Your April 23rd news

A couple of things from Daisy Campbell on Twitter. Her majesty looks oddly familiar.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Update on moderation policy

I've been relying on Google to email me when a comment needs to be moderated. Apparently this process is not infallible, and I need to check comments folders in Blogger periodically to make sure I haven't missed anyone. If you have posted a comment and you haven't seen it approved in a reasonable time, you can email me. The address is listed under "About" on this page.

I missed a comment from someone I admire and he felt slighted, which I feel badly about.  I didn't want to go to moderation, but I don't know how else to keep out the spam. I value everyone's comments and appreciate the folks who take the time to leave one.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Kinks guitarist is a RAW fan

Dave Davies on Dutch TV in 1967 (Creative Commons 3.0 photo via Wikipedia)

If you are a certain age — OK, if you're old like me — you'll know that the British Invasion wasn't just The Beatles and the Rolling Stones, but also included many other fine groups, such as the Kinks, known for hits such as "You Really Got Me" and "Lola." The main songwriter, Ray Davies, is the best-known member, but his brother, Dave Davies, is the group's lead guitar player and an important part of the band's sound.

Via Jesse Walker (a Kinks fan), I learned that the Daily Express, a British newspaper, has a recurring feature in which a celebrity is asked to name six favorite books. Dave Davies was interviewed on April 19, and the six he mentioned include Right Where You Are Sitting Now by Robert Anton Wilson: "Wilson had a very interesting take on the way the world functions. His ideas were a breath of fresh air. Everybody’s vision of reality is different. He talks of understanding the differences and how we should be compassionate about what others think."

Davies' favorites also include Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K. Dick.

But wait! There's more! (as the old TV commercials used to say). If you follow the link to the Daily Express, notice the headline under "Related Articles": The Kink's legend's shock claim: I had a message from aliens. 

He said: “You have an experience with a UFO, and you keep those feelings, and then it gets into your subconscious and super-conscious.

“When I investigated what those feelings could be, when I got really into ufology, I could’ve sworn I was having connections with the Dog Star, with Sirius.”

Maybe this guy should do a musical collaboration with R.U. Sirius.

Here is Butterfly Language's take on alien contacts with Robert Anton Wilson, Philip K. Dick and Timothy Leary. 

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Lovecraft takes another posthumous hit

H.P. Lovecraft, a character in Illuminatus! and a literary influence on Robert Anton Wilson, has taken another posthumous blow to his reputation. The World Fantasy Convention has stopped putting his likeness on pins given to nominees for the World Fantasy Award. Previously, the event had stopped using a bust of Lovecraft for its actual award. News via Supergee, who does a great job of keeping up with news of fandom.

It's hard to see how the folks at World Fantasy Con could have done anything else, or even why they waited so long after years of controversy. 

But it's a little more difficult for me to see why there's so much focus on a guy who died in 1937 and who apparently made most of his objectionable statements in private. It seems worse to me when the modern Whacko Puppies guy makes racist and sexist statements in public.

I don't know what to think about the allegations against Arthur C. Clarke (for whom a major award is named in Britain) but there seems to be little doubt that Isaac Asimov spent years groping women at science fiction conventions.  Why isn't there anything negative in Asimov's Wikipedia bio?

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Off to Penguicon soon

Ada Palmer

It's so exciting to get to go to a science fiction convention! I still manage it periodically, and the weekend of April 28-30 I will be at the latest Penguicon, in the Detroit area. 

Penguicon is billed as a "non-profit, open-source science fiction convention" and it promotes a great deal of open source culture, such as Linux, and in general has a lot of connections to the modern counterculture; at the last Penguicon I was able to attend, in 2012, I went to a presentation on varieties of tarot cards and listened to Creative Commons hip-hop music from the Scrub Club record label as well as attending more usual offerings on science fiction authors and lore. 

I was delighted to see that this year's Penguicon will have Ada Palmer. Another of my favorites, Cory Doctorow will be there, too. There aren't as many SF authors as at the bigger literary conventions, but there will be other notable writers there, such as John Scalzi, and a guy named Ferrett Steinmetz, who is from the Cleveland area and active on Twitter. I'll be promoting the Libertarian Futurist Society and will likely try to promote this blog a bit, too. 

I never got to see Robert Anton Wilson at a SF convention (or anywhere else), but as I've mentioned before, I met Robert Shea at a worldcon in Boston in 1989, a big thrill.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Tuesday links

The Nixon Quantum Hangover. From Butterfly Language. Trump is often compared to Nixon, and Illuminatus! was written during the Nixon presidency.

The Great Letter and the Infinite Process of Self-Embedding. From PQ. Finnegans Wake as a hologram of the universe.

First novels that were the author's best. Via Supergee, who tactfully doesn't add that some would mention Illuminatus!

Two weeks away from the Cosmic Trigger play. 

Adam Gorightly Tweet.