Archive for May 2nd, 2012

"Miller on Miller" – audio reflections, ruminations, and musings from the man himself, circa 1957!

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Ahh, WMFU. The world’s greatest radio station, situated in lovely Jersey City, NJ.

It wasn’t always that way. Back in the day – the mid-90s – it was the college station for a sleepy li’ school called Upsala College in East (or was it West? – Oh, Chris said it’s East) Orange, NJ.

Then the college went bankrupt.

Have you ever heard of a college going bankrupt? Whaaa?

So now WMFU is self-sustaining thanks to donations and the like.

Everything is streamed, and their “Beware of the Blog” is the neatest mp3 blog around. Exhibit A: these amazing audio files of Henry Miller! Specifically, “Miller on Miller,” which, despite the obvious – albeit abstract – sexual connotations, is simply a fancy title for a set of audio pieces capturing the one thing Miller is really good at: talking about himself.

Check out the link, and you’ll see audio snippet of Miller ruminating on things like “How I Cut Loose,” reflections on “Neurotics, Surrealists, and Obsessives,” and, “Life in Paris.”

Some additional context by poster Eric Cecil:

“Miller’s voice is just as circumlocutory and intoxicating as his writing, and there exists, on sites like UbuWeb, a number of audio interviews showcasing the locquacious bastard’s lilting verbal wash. All of his recorded interviews and readings are at least interesting, if not outright brilliant, but my favorite is a double LP titled Henry Miller Recalls and Reflects, which Riverside Records issued in 1957.

Courtesy of the aforementioned UbuWeb, here’s that double album in its entirety. And for those who’re enamored with all things Miller, don’t forget to check out the Cosmodemonic Telegraph Company blog.”


Handmade Houses: A Century of Earth-Friendly Home Design, featuring people we know!

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So there’s a new book out and it’s super-cool. It’s called Handmade Houses: A Century of Earth-Friendly Home Design, by Richard Olson, and it’s about the emerging trend of – you guessed it – handmade houses. (Wanna copy? Don’t buy it from Amazon please; call us and order one over the phone: 831-667-2574.)

Magnus’ cabin is in it. So is Jersey Chris’s landlord’s house. And Bobby’s house.

A lot of Big Sur houses are in it!

That said, the “handmade house” has only recently become a novelty. For many thousands of years, all houses were handmade. Then with the large-scale urbanization of the Industrial Revolution and the postwar tract housing, individual designer-builder-owner homes became quaintly old fashioned. Here’s a nice synopsis from the New York Journal of Books:

The period from1960s and ’70s, which occupies much of Mr. Olsen’s book, has a special resonance today because once again the earth is calling us back. Seemingly out-of-control technology and ineffective government regulation is endangering our fragile ecology and the construction industry bears a great deal of responsibility. Today’s “green revolution” in housing really began in the handmade houses of 50 years ago.

All of this, of course, begs the more pressing question which I’m sure you’re all thinking: when will they publish a book about Big Sur vans and those who live in them?