April 1, 2010

In the Boulder Creek Café...

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... you should be bold — experimental. Nature is beautiful, but so is art.

***

Those little rock piles remind me of drawings by Yves Tanguy, like this one, which I photographed at the Chicago Institute of Art a few weeks ago:

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58 comments:

rhhardin said...

They're cairns marking a very temporary trail.

David said...

In environmentally correct America, you could not build Boulder Creek Cafe nowadays. Flood Plain.

Lem said...

PBS American Masters last night featured I.M. Pei's design of a museum for his home town of Suzhou.

In another scene, Pei describes "stone farming," whereby rocks are slowly eroded in water until they take on smooth and suggestive forms. "The father sows, and the son reaps," he says to his grandson Stephen, who sits silently next to him. A garden of stones becomes central to his design concept for the museum.

Garden of stones.

Lem said...

Speaking of bold.. Rush is wandering what Obama put in for Race in his census form.

The White House is not releasing that information.

halojones-fan said...

You should be bold, and experimental, and you should make large stone penises in the creek.

LonewackoDotCom said...

They're called ducks.

P.S. While the teaparties were busy throwing tantrums, Michael Steele supported amnesty at a meeting with far-left and Mexico-linked groups.

Two days ago I tried to get people to get him to do things the right way, and obviously he didn't. If only I'd suggested waving loopy signs I might have gotten some help.

Christy said...

Both make my skin crawl. I itch to pinch off the abnormal growths, to toss the rocks randomly into the creek, to fling the little extra bits of the drawing into their own chaotic pile or into the wind to disperse widely. Nasty, just nasty. YMMV.

MamaM said...

"Creativity is the glory of being human" J. Bradshaw


Lem, thanks for the links

cokaygne said...

I dissent. Let nature be nature. It is presumptuous to assume that one can improve upon the river's arrangement of rocks. In fact, it is an eyesore of vandalism.

jeff said...

Wasnt this in The Blair Witch movie?

rhhardin said...

Man in shorts observed by dog.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Speaking of bold.. Rush is wandering what Obama put in for Race in his census form.


I plan to put in Tauren as my race. See what they make of that.

Those rocks remind me of the fun summer days spent sunning on some of the streams in the Feather River Watershed in my misspent youth. Drugs were involved.

It was always cool to come upon a stack of stones and see if we couldn't just add one more or create our own impromptu and temporary sculpture.

ricpic said...

Tanguy

<img src="http://moma.org/collection_images/resized/489/w500h420/CRI_151489.jpg

Paul said...

I hike a lot in the state forest near my home, sometimes off the trails, and I occasionally come across those strange little towers of very expertly stacked stones. I like them. They make me wonder who went to the trouble of erecting them and add a touch of whimsy to the scene.

Chip Ahoy said...

Derived. Bill Dan, S.F. rock balancer.

rhhardin said...

The best rock paper scissors gambit is the avalanche, consisting of all rocks.

edutcher said...

Are you sure that one on the left is a duck? And those two on the right?

Ann, did the creek look like that when you got there?

LonewackoDotCom said...

...

P.S. While the teaparties were busy throwing tantrums, Michael Steele supported amnesty at a meeting with far-left and Mexico-linked groups.

Why do you think so many people want to get rid of him? The bondage club was just comic relief.

Lem said...

The Google April fools joke is kind of lame..

AlphaLiberal said...

Lookee there. Salon takes a whack at Ann Althouse for being a Bush apologist regarding the warrantless wiretapping program now found to be illegal three times.

Double down, Annie! Keep digging!

One related note: back when Judge Diggs Taylor ruled that the Bush NSA program was unconstitutional, law professors Orin Kerr and Ann Althouse (the former a sometimes-Bush-apologist and the latter a constant one) viciously disparaged her and her ruling by claiming that she failed to give sufficient attention to the Government's arguments as to why the program was legal. Althouse was even allowed to launch that attack in an Op-Ed in The New York Times. But as I documented at the time, the argument made by these right-wing law professors to attack Judge Taylor was grounded in total ignorance: the reason the court there didn't pay much attention to the legal justifications for the NSA program was because the Bush DOJ -- just like the Obama DOJ here -- refused to offer any such justifications, insisting instead that the court had no right even to consider the case..

and.....

But exactly the same thing was true for Judge Taylor when she ruled three years ago that the NSA program was illegal, which is why the right-wing attacks on her judicial abilities back then (led by Kerr and Althouse) were so frivolous and misinformed. .

Three judges have ruled against the Althouse Opinion supporting warrantless wiretapping. Time for a retraction, an apology to the judge and a show of public humility.

AlphaLiberal said...

Oops, I meant Glenn Greenwald. I am tired after lunch.

He still calls Althouse on being painfully wrong on a core Constitutional issue.

Blue@9 said...

I hike a lot in the state forest near my home, sometimes off the trails, and I occasionally come across those strange little towers of very expertly stacked stones. I like them. They make me wonder who went to the trouble of erecting them and add a touch of whimsy to the scene.


They're called cairns. People put them up to mark the trail.

LonewackoDotCom said...

Things like that are called "ducks" in the U.S.; they're trail markers and, since someone might be using them you shouldn't disturb them (unless you're a sociopath/teapartier). In this case, they probably aren't trail markers but are just the result of some stoned hippie trying to make art.

Lem said...
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Lem said...

Althouse links a Volock Conspiracy post (only second to her in the law blog comunity) and that makes her a Bush apologist?

AlphaLiberal said...

Have no idea why you say that, Lem. Read much?

edutcher said...

Ann Althouse said...

Those little rock piles remind me of drawings by Yves Tanguy,...

Wasn't she the "I Don't Care" Girl?

Scott said...

The woman posts a picture of rocks in a stream.

AlphaLiberal pukes six paragraphs of juvenile triumphalism.

Go away, loser.

AlphaLiberal said...

Here is the Althouse attack on Judge Diggs Taylor and her opinion in the warrantless wiretapping case which Glenn Greenwald points out has now been discredited by the next two judgments agreeing with Judge Diggs Taylor. Volokh has nothing to do with it.

Ya gotta love this argument from Althouse in the NYT, shown to be without merit:
For those who approve of the outcome , the judge’s opinion is counterproductive. It will be harder to defend upon appeal than a more careful decision. .


Here was Glenn Greenwald's rebuttal of Althouse' attack upon the judge, at the time. And this one.

It's interesting to review these things after the judgment is vindicated. Who know? Maybe Althouse wants to attack the other two judges, as well?

Scott said...
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Scott said...

LoneWacko: Yeah, I remember seeing pictures of those in the Boy Scout manual. I have never been an avid trail hiker, so I haven't seen piles of stones being used like that, though.

Would love to hike the Appalachian Trail. Afraid of black bears.

AlphaLiberal said...

Scott, these "cafe" things are open threads. Get the concept?

And you're a discredit to broccoli.

Scott said...

I apologise to the non-troll commenters for violating the rule about feeding trolls.

Hunter McDaniel said...

Scott-
I never saw cairns marking a trail before moving to Colorado. Back east where most of the trails go through forests, it is customary to put blazes on the trees. But out here where trails go through open areas above treeline, then cairns are used instead.

Scott said...

Hunter: That makes sense. When you were hiking out East, did you run into black bears?

AlphaLiberal said...

Yeah, a commenter who has been commenting for years is a "troll." Even broccoli knows that's dumb.

Scott said...

From Wikipedia:

"In Internet slang, a troll is someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, chat room or blog, with the primary intent of provoking other users into an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion."

YOU are a troll. You may have been polluting Althouse comments for years, but you are still a troll. The definition describes you to a "T".

Kirby Olson said...

When Katharine Lee Bates penned America the Beautiful in the 1890s, she missed out on these rocks, but maybe it's a more recent innovation.

Here's Ray Charles doing Am. the Beautiful, from about 1974 or so. He improvises the lyrics until about 1:45, when the amber waves of grain and such comes in.

This is art and nature and patriotism rolled into one. They should be so lucky as to have someone like Ray Charles sing it.

Could a rapper do it justice?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRUjr8EVgBg

Scott said...

@Kirby:

My boyfriend is a rapper.* I'll ask him when I get home. (He's making spaghetti tonight! Woo!)

=====

*Plug: Feel free to download his mix tape!

traditionalguy said...

Talk about a mysterious coincidence, Tanguy was able to draw the synapse pattern inside Hank Johnson's brain way back then.

Scott said...

I love Ray Charles. Trying to find a recording of him singing "Them That Got" which Ben Folds covered.

traditionalguy said...

Rocks are used to make the temporary part of human lifetimes seem permanent. Come back in 50 years and the rocks will still be here, even if people who placed them are gone with the wind.

Penny said...

Sweet memories. There was a creek in the woods, not a quarter mile from my childhood house. My best friend and I would spend hours and hours there pretending to be other than who we were. We’d play cowboys and Indians, but it was clearly understood that the Indian had the most fun. She’d get to sit in the make shift teepee we made from tree limbs and vines. Another favorite game was to go digging for gold. We both wanted to be 49’s, digging and sifting until our hands got numb. On competitive days we’d race each other over the rocks to see who could get to the other side first, and when we were feeling artistic, we’d try to make cups out of mud.

Every kid deserves a creek, dammit!

Blue@9 said...

Rocks are used to make the temporary part of human lifetimes seem permanent. Come back in 50 years and the rocks will still be here, even if people who placed them are gone with the wind.

Sometimes when I'm backpacking in the mountains I'll pick up a rock and think "This rock has been around for millions of years and it's possible that no human hand has ever touched it before now." Makes me feel incredibly powerful and important.

Blue@9 said...

Things like that are called "ducks" in the U.S.

It may depend on the locale. Growing up in Colorado we always called them cairns.

Christy said...

Took 2 nephews up into the Smokies this last Saturday for some lite hiking. They were supposed to stay within sight of me, but in a detour down to the river the youngest spotted a wild turkey and off he went. When neither answered his phone, I exclaimed "I'm going to kill two teenagers." Turning around, I see strangers and insist, "I didn't mean that. Please don't testify against me." The alpha female held up her flip camera, saying, "Too late," as everyone else waved their cameras in the air and laughed. Sign of the times?

We did a few symbolic yards on the
Appalachian Trail.

Another Sign of the Times: We are driving home and come upon an intersection where the road to Knoxville diverts from the road to the Interstate. A big sign in the middle of the road is flashing "YOUR GPS IS WRONG! ...."

AprilApple said...

A nice walk up the Boulder creek path (from, oh say the library) up to Ebin G. Fine park is a lovely thing to do. Not as much this time of year, but in the summer, it's fun to watch the tubbers and the rushing snow-melt water.

Paul said...

Blogger Blue@9 said...They're called cairns. People put them up to mark the trail.

You would think so, but the ones I see are not marking anything. They're someone's idea of installation art. You sometimes see them along well-trodden trails where no marks are necessary, and sometimes out in the middle of a grove of trees where no one would normally walk.

rhhardin said...

Forsythia.

Same plant last year, Apr 5.

knox said...

Wasn't this in The Blair Witch movie?

That was my first thought!

rhhardin said...

All rocks are offspring through fission of the same enormous forebear. All one can say about this fabulous body is that once outside of limbo it did not remain standing...The history of this body will be no more than an history of perpetual disintegration.

Francis Ponge

peter hoh said...

For those of you hoping that the GOP will repeal health reform: GOP Will Repeal Health Reform Just Like Obama “Ended” the Iraq War.

peter hoh said...

To make it more appealing to she who runs this blog: the GOP will repeal health reform like Obama "closed" Gitmo.

AlphaLiberal said...

Scott, to your tiresome troll accusations:

a) It's Althouse's custom that the posts titled "Cafe" are open threads. Maybe that's a misread on my part but that's the custom I've observed.

b) I posted on a topic she herself has posted on many times. A topic she wrote an op-ed in the New York Times about. A topic back in the news yet inconvenient to conservatives.

c) I'm also partially addressing one of her favorite topics: Ann Althouse. The blog is named after her!

d) You are following typical conservative practice when confronted with view you do not want to hear -- insult and try to shut up the speaker.

So, you're wrong.

s. melmoth said...

These might also be handmade stone pagodas, common in some Buddhist countries, and possibly also in portions of the US where there are quite a few Buddhists, like Boulder.

See here for a few examples in Korea.

peter hoh said...

Lem, thanks for the tip. The documentary about the Suzhou Museum was delightful. The rock garden is absolutely amazing. Wow.

Scott said...
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Scott said...

It's funny when:

Someone who laces EVERY post with invective,

Someone who CANNOT see anything outside the liberal/conservative template, and yet characterizes OTHERS as "stupid",

Someone who is as AGGRESSIVE and SANCTIMONIOUS as he is TONE DEAF,

Someone who, when confronted with his bullshit, claims that he is a VICTIM of attempts to be "shut up" and claims that this is somehow a "conservative" tactic (which is patently stupid because he has NEVER been "shut up" by anyone; and the tactic of shouting down people, as he constantly practices, is an Alinskyist LEFTIST TROLL TACTIC),

calls ME tiresome! :)

(And now back to our regular program, which is already in progress.)

ken in sc said...

Cairns were originally stone piles to mark a grave or mass burial. Southern Celtic highlanders sometimes say that rotten meat smells cairny.