or, stuff that I dragged out of my head

Location: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Friday, March 12, 2010

Video Conferencing

I have nothing to say about any of my usual stuff today, but here are two videos to occupy you anyway, and you really need to see them, because they are both going to mess with your head in the best way possible.

First, a very strange conglomeration of teddy bears and pigeons and cars at the seaside set to some horrifyingly infectious music; the thing starts out very chipper and adorable--teddy bear waves hello!--and soon takes a violent turn (teddy bear batters pigeon with a light standard and then gets hit by a car), later becoming rather Dada with, eventually, a healthy dose of Escher. As it gets more and more complex, sort of like that Kylie Minogue video taken in a freakish and sinister new direction, it shovels increasingly enormous amounts of data into your head, and while I was sitting watching and listening to it, with a fan blowing at me (it was a warmish day) and the smell of a new perfume (one I'm trying to write about) wafting in my nostrils, I came as close as I have ever come to total sensory overload, which was a little scary but also very exciting.

And then the newest Lady Gaga video, "Telephone". I don't care if you don't like her. Watch it with the sound off, if you must. It's a hell of a thing, art-directed out to Jesus and back, referencing dozens of American movies--it's like something Quentin Tarantino would have made if he were gay.

Actually, as it turns out, I do have something to say about the sort of thing I usually have something to say about, because it occurred to me while thinking about that first video that even if you didn't know the source of it, you could guess that the word "pigeon" would absolutely have to be French. You can just tell. And of course it is. But here's what's interesting: before we stole "pigeon" from the French, we had another word for the bird, one which I had never heard before: "culver". In Old English it was "culufre", which looks French but actually isn't, although from the look of it, it must surely have been influenced by French spellings: that word comes from Latin "colomba", the Latin word for "dove" or "pigeon" (which is a sort of dove).


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