I am tempted to wrap up 2011 with some sort of epic jeremiad in which I dismiss the preceding twelve months as the year in which all hope was lost, and acknowledge that the 2012-dead-enders might be on to something. But I can’t write a better version of that than Mr. Kernohan already has… So I find myself in the unlikely position of poking through the embers in search of light and warmth.
And if I am wholly honest, this year-old Abject space is very much a product of 2011… While it is safe to say that this blog did absolutely nothing to make the world a better place, it did provide me with a space to get my hands into the gears of webwork again, to spew verbiage as I see fit. The readership here is miniscule, but if I had to draw up a select list of people whose work is most important to me, the ones I most want to interact with for inspiration and for laughs… well, I pretty much have that here. So if you have spun by this little lovenest of ed tech subversion for whatever reason, and especially if you ever cared to toss off a comment or a link, I truly appreciate it.
My bit of year-end good cheer is drawn from someone who has been in this field doing great work ever since I got here, Sebastien Paquet, who a few weeks back Tweeted:
The slight shift to “DIO” from “DIY” is obvious enough, and if I think about all the fun and all I learned this past year through, say, DS106, it’s equally obvious I didn’t do any of it myself. I can’t do anything by myself… but maybe I can help kick out the jams, because WE ROCK:
Onward to a loud and rowdy 2012 my friends. Nobody’s gonna do it for us, we’ll have to do it ourselves. Mess with the bull, you get the horns.
Watching that cute pre-picture cat reminded me of when we lived in Hermosillo, Mexico in the late 90′s. We went to a lot of movies because they were fairly cheap and air-conditioned. The films often sucked, but I always loved the cute pre-picture cats that sang a song about the importance of not talking during movies, reminding us to turn off our cel phones. I can’t find the exact clip they played, but this more recent production starring “Front Row Joe” (el gato Joe) is a less charming example.
Thinking back to those cinema trips I remembered another pre-movie short they would always play. The explicit message is “vive sin drogas” (live without drugs), but the trippy visuals and hypnotic aesthetic undercut that ostensible moral:
Marty Krofft has neither admitted nor hinted in occasional interviews that the references were made knowingly; in one case, a writer reported that when pressed as to the connotation of “lids” in the title Lidsville, “Well, maybe we just had a good sense of humor,” Krofft said, laughing. His comments to another interviewer were more direct; in a Times Union profile whose author observed, “Watching the shows today, it’s hard to imagine a show with more wink-and-nod allusions to pot culture, short of something featuring characters named Spliffy and Bong-O,” Krofft conceded that the show’s title had been an intentional marijuana reference, as had Lidsville, but “that was just a prank to see if they could get them past clueless NBC executives”.