Sunday, November 30, 2008


Here's an entire episode of the vintage Suspense mystery TV show. This one stars George Reeves and Jack Klugman.

Seen at Classic Television Showbiz
If you want to find out more about the show go here or here.

In the Company of Artists

In the Company of Artists is a survey of more than 90 portraits and candid photographs of visual, literary, and performing artists by more than 30 photographers who have had access to the interesting places and people in the world of art. Photographers such as André Kertész, Man Ray, Yousuf Karsh, Arnold Newman and Robert Mapplethorpe took portraits of artists, their families, friends, and surroundings, along with writers, models and others from artistic and bohemian circles from the late 1890s to the present.

Read more about this exhibition organized by the Detroit Institute of Arts at Artdaily


Artist Kasey McMahon put a computer in a beaver. Really.

Compubeaver: Gates, Jobs and Wozniak a run for their money.

Singing the praises of Compubeaver:

'This is one of those things you think, wow, how in the world did we make it this far in the tech age without it?' Ned, Beaver Afficionado

'My cup runneth over from the beaver of knowledge.' Edgar, Super Extra Hi Tech Magazine

'Who knew the internets could be so cuddly?' Katelynn, Expert in Cute

Thanks to my buddy Blort, the Cadillac of link bloggers.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

60s Birds

When I was a pre-teen the London scene exploded, rock stars, models, motor scooters, mini skirts and a look that went along with it and, man, I wanted that look. I was a runty kid who looked more like an undersized Joan Baez than any of the Swinging London girls below but I lived in the hope that I could pull it off even without the hair, the makeup or the clothes. Hope that I could live the mod lifestyle in Ville St. Pierre, Quebec sprang eternal. Here is a photo of me with my sisters and little cousins in 1965 (I'm in the striped shirt on the right). You see how hopeless it all was. Sad really.

Here are a few of the girls I yearned to emulate:

Jean Shrimpton was the first face of London in the early 60s, a precursor of what came after. She was so sophisticated and I considered her part of an older generation but I remember seeing her face on the covers of all the fashion mags and her look set the stage for a decade of British beauties. She dated photographer David Bailey and Terence Stamp and lived a glamourous life in Mod London. She now runs a hotel in Penzance with her photographer husband Michael Cox.

Twiggy, born Leslie Hornby, was cute and awkward and became a modeling sensation at the age of 16. I remember giving my younger sister an amateur Twiggy haircut and we all penciled in lower eyelashes trying (unsuccessfully) to mimic her look. She dabbled in various areas of showbiz but never regained the fame she had for 4 years in the 60s. She still looks fabulous.

Vogue model, style icon and David Bailey's muse, Penelope Tree (below) was another Sixties It Girl. She wasn't a favourite of mine but I would have traded places with her in a heartbeat. In a rare interview she tells Louise France about her charity work, the misery behind her privileged upbringing - and how the Dalai Lama saved her life. Read more

Remember Paul McCartney's main squeeze, Jane Asher? She was the envy of young girls everywhere. In addition to writing, she now runs Jane Asher Party Cakes (as she has since 1990). The company makes premium cakes for corporations and private parties (including one for Prince Charles' 50th birthday celebration). She's still gorgeous at 61.

Sweetly beautiful Marianne Faithfull was Mick Jagger's girlfriend but was also a successful singer in her own right. I liked her best of all. Her descent into drug addiction is well-documented. To everyone's surprise, including her own, she bounced back in the late seventies with her album Broken English and has had a successful career in music and acting. She is still touring.

Pattie Boyd was muse to George Harrison and Eric Clapton and inspired Clapton to write Layla. She had them both on their knees. She must be broke now because she recently wrote a tell-all autobiography. She's still way better looking than me but wouldn't turn heads at the supermarket. Because I have a nasty side that makes me happy.

Furoshiki Gift Wrapping

Use recyclable cloth wrapping. You know you want to.

Furoshiki Gift Wrapping


My first Christmas card - obviously from a fellow blogger

Thanks Tom

Friday, November 28, 2008

Jamaican dancehall culture

This week, the Soul Jazz Recordings published the book which chronicles writer and photographer Beth Lesser's travels around Jamaica in the 80s, telling the story for which the compilation provides a Soundtrack. Here are a selection of Lesser's images and the writer's own captions from the book.

Musician Gregory Isaacs in front of his African Museum store on Chancery Lane, Kingston

The Absolute Bottom 50 Funeral Eulogies

1. She died as she lived: oddly dressed and smelling vaguely of turpentine.

2. Death is not an end, but a beginning. Specifically, the beginning of an eternity of black nothingness.

3. He had many hobbies, and he was very proud of them. He had that rarest of gifts: the ability to find the beauty and artistry in the hardcore amateur farm porn he shot with his Super 8 over at Oakville Community Stables.

4. He touched all of our lives. Unfortunately, he also touched several of our children.

5. Bill was not a rich man. He was not a proud man. He was not a successful man. Nor was he especially attractive, articulate, or even remotely respected. Neither was he particularly well-liked or hygienic. So I suppose, what I'm really trying to say is... there's cake back at the house and if we hurry, we can probably catch the second half of the Bulls game.

See more Funeral Eulogies

It is Awesome

All the wrong people have self-esteem...

Design Observer

Thursday, November 27, 2008

New Drawings by Banksy

More Banksy drawings


For all you font freaks


Vintage Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Click the image then click Parade Information to see some vintage parade videos.

70's Rock Musicians and Their Parent's Homes

We found this fascinating series of photos from the archives of LIFE magazine, giving readers a peek inside the homes of the parents/grandparents of some of the most influential musical artists from the 1970's, including the likes of Frank Zappa [above], Grace Slick, The Jackson Five, Elton John, Eric Clapton and many more


Temple of Million Bottles

Recycling is a good thing. I think I'll build a temple from my empty wine bottles.

Situated roughly 370 miles northeast of Bangkok is the Wat Pa Maha Chedio KaewSisaket temple, nicknamed Wat Kuan Lad, which literally translates to 'Temple of a Million Glass Bottles.' That's because everything in the temple--and we mean everything--incorporates glass bottles.

See more

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Wii Theremin

My fan(s) will know that I love a good theremin post. What you didn't know is that I was tortured by sleeplessness last night and, as I tossed and turned, visions of theremins filled my thoughts. Yeah, I know this is weird. Imagine how delighted I was to see this today:

Via clusterflock

Maybe Toy Car

Uncomprehending box of electronics or the beginnings of artificial intelligence?
Via davidthompson



Magazines are awash in Barack-emblazoned covers. It’s only a matter of time before many of them transform into unabashedly pro-Bama titles. See more

Monday, November 24, 2008


Europeana is a project that showcases European history, literature, arts and science. Three million cultural items – images, texts, sounds and videos went online in an ambitious launch. A little too ambitious it seems as the site crashed after receiving 10 million hits per hour. I'm looking forward to exploring it when it returns in mid-December.

Bob Dylan/Johnny Cash :: 1969 Sessions

Aquarium Drunkard blogged this true piece of Americana — two iconic masters of their craft conversing with one another via song. Recorded throughout 1969 on three separate occasions, these recordings mark an important historical collaboration between two American poets/musicians.

I'm singing along like a demented honky tonk angel. Johnny is the stronger country voice but Dylan acquits himself on most of the songs.
Thanks Karen.

A Gower Street Christmas

My good friend Maggie in St. John's Newfoundland sent me this link to Rock Recipes gingerbread houses. Comes with instructions so you can make a piece of The Rock for your home this Christmas.
After two years on Circular Road, our gingerbread project moves a little closer to the harbour, this year landing on the east end of Gower Street to feature these three traditionally colorful row houses.

Above is this year's Gower Street house. Below are some delightful models from previous years.Thanks, Mag!

Stand By Me: Peace Through Music

Stand By Me is one of my favourite songs. Here it is played by musicians around the world as part of the documentary film Playing For Change by Mark Johnson and Jonathan Walls . The song says it all. Sweet!
Via Miss Cellania

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Canadian Blog Awards

Nag on the Lake has been nominated once again for a Canadian Blog Award in the Best Cultural/Entertainment Blog category. After much pondering I've decided that my platform will be "More beer and wider sidewalks" since "Change" was already taken. Here's hoping that I won't have to resort to intimidation tactics to get you to cast a vote for me.

Many thanks to The Reluctant Housewife for the nomination. She has been nominated in the Best Family Blog category.

Ry Cooder’s American West

I happen to think Ry Cooder is a genius so I was happy to see that he's back at it.

Click image to see audio slide show

Ry’s latest project may be his strangest and most ambitious. It’s a trilogy of concept albums, plus a short novel, that resurrects a lost California of places and people that Ry, who is 61, remembers from growing up in the 1950s. It was a dryer and poorer place then, but rich in things he likes, like simplicity and ingenuity, good musicians, cool cats and hot cars. Time and neglect have bulldozed most of it into oblivion. Read more

Surge in record sales as Catholics finally discover the Beatles

VATICAN CITY–The Vatican's newspaper has finally forgiven John Lennon for declaring that the Beatles were more famous than Jesus Christ, calling the remark a 'boast' by a young man grappling with sudden fame.

Perhaps the Pope was an underground fan in their Frankfurt days?

From my cell I scent the reeking soul of US justice

The Times Online published this article by the incomparably egocentric Conrad Black that, at first read, I took for parody:
Many of the other co-residents are quite interesting and affable, often in a Damon Runyon way, and the regime is not uncivilised. In eight months here there has not been the slightest unpleasantness with anyone. It is a little like going back to boarding school, which I somewhat enjoyed nearly 50 years ago (before being expelled for insubordination) and is a sharp change of pace after 16 years as chairman of The Daily Telegraph. I can report that a change is not always as good as a rest.

However, apart from missing the constant companionship of my magnificent wife Barbara, who visits me once, twice or even three times each week and lives nearby in our Florida home with her splendid Hungarian dogs, I enjoy some aspects of my status as a victim of the American prosecutocracy. More

I despise him (perhaps irrationally) and hope he rots in his prison/boarding school.

Potapych, the Bear Who Loved Vodka

This bear reminds me of Mr. Nag, not the accidental killing, tranquilizer darts and jail, just the vodka loving part.

Via Miss Cellania

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Nov. 22, 1963

On This Day CBC Archives:
"The United States, and perhaps the entire world, is in shock tonight as word spreads that U.S. President John F. Kennedy is dead, murdered by an assassin in Dallas. In this broadcast from that unforgettable day, CBC-TV brings you extensive coverage of the day's tragedy, talking to stunned citizens and politicians in both the U.S. and Canada as they mourn the popular young president."

Click on the image to see CBC coverage


Noble and Webster have been featured on this blog before. They make beautiful art from found objects. Click the image below to hear them talk about the creative process behind the exhibition at the British Museum Statuephilia : Dark Stuff.

Looking for Christmas gift ideas? Look no further.

Four Neocons of the Environmental-Economic Apocalypse collector plates | A Creative Revolution

Say it ain't true!

The angelic Amelie Poulain is a serial killer in this spoof.

Tous les Garcons et les Filles

Francoise Hardy - Tous les Garcons et les Filles

Friday, November 21, 2008


Here are many of my icons. I love it.
Andrew Zuckerman: Wisdom

Wireless router vase by STC

I have been setting up office space for a new Member of Parliament so my mind has been focused on office equipment. All the government assets we've received are ancient - the movers said our computers should be in a museum. Would that we could have beautiful equipment like this:

Seen at Dezeen

Roadside Art Online

Lots more signs at Roadside Art Online

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Recession? What recession?

These poor people are really suffering - not.
The economic downturn is affecting everyone, including Madison Avenue shoppers. Tim Murphy hit the luxury-store-strewn street to find out how shoppers are scaling back in These Economic Times. One had just bought glasses. "They were cheap. I got the $200 ones instead of the ones that were $400. Just 'cause I'm trying to be, you know, a good person." Another told him, "I'm eliminating silliness — necessities more than superfluous nonsense." He had just bought something at Tiffany & Company. Watch the video to find out what (after the commercial):

The Amami Rabbit

The Amami rabbit — a threatened species found only in the Ryūkyū Islands — may become Japan’s first endangered animal clone. Scientists at Osaka’s Kinki University have cloned an embryo of the endangered rabbit and are awaiting its birth next month, it was announced earlier this week.

The Amami rabbit (Pentalagus furnessi) is a nocturnal, forest-dwelling “primitive” rabbit with dark fur, short legs, large curved claws and small ears. Found only on the islands of Amami-Ōshima and Toku-no-Shima, it is sometimes called a “living fossil” for its resemblance to ancient rabbits that once inhabited the Asian mainland. The Amami rabbit’s dwindling population — now estimated at between 2,000 and 5,000 — has earned it a spot on Japan’s endangered species list.

Unfortunately these cute clones will be living in zoos unless people address the root cause of the problem: encroachment on their habitat.

Read more at Pink Tentacle

Millions of photos

Search millions of photographs from the LIFE photo archive, stretching from the 1750s to today. Most were never published and are now available for the first time through the joint work of LIFE and Google.

World Toilet Day

19 November is World Toilet Day – a day to celebrate the humble, yet vitally important, toilet and to raise awareness of the global sanitation crisis.

Imagine life without a toilet. No toilets in your home or at work, no public toilets, no toilets anywhere. Imagine the mess. Imagine the disease.

It's hard to imagine life without something we take for granted, but this is the daily reality for 2.6 billion people – 40% of the world's population.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Vintage Geisha Postcards

Vintage Geisha Postcards - a set on Flickr

Via Blort

A Visit to Rungis

A great article with lots of pictures of The World's Biggest Food Market:
Rungis, just outside Paris, is a cult place for gourmets. It is so huge you need a car to go from one hall to the next. That is where Parisian chefs buy what they cook. I was able to visit at 4h00 in the morning.

1001 rules for my unborn son

This blog of fatherly advice amuses me. He wants his unborn son to look like John Waters? Cool... I guess.

298. Have a signature look.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

One Hundred Photographs

BY EVENTUAL profession, Bruce Bernard was a writer, compiler and editor of books about painting and photography. By longer social reputation, he was a well-known figure in Soho in the decades when its pubs and bars were frequented by painters and writers, and by those who nearly were or wanted to be.

Bernard had no academic qualification and gained his considerable knowledge from many years spent in the company of painters and photographers, and by looking at pictures in galleries and in photogaphic archives spread across the world. He was a passionate discoverer, particularly of neglected documentary photography from the 19th and early 20th centuries, and arguably the finest (certainly the most decisive) judge in this country of what makes a good and interesting photograph. More

In 1996 Bruce Bernard was commissioned to create a collection of photographs for an eminent private collector. After several years of trawling through galleries, art fairs and auction houses he settled on 100 images that "truly stimulated and satisfied" him. One Hundred Photographs is a wonderful book of those images. I found it yesterday among the zillions of books at The Book Depot and couldn't put it down. It was tough to choose which of the hundred photos I'd scan and post. They're all so good. Bernard's insights on the photographs are fascinating but you'll have to buy the book to see them.

Eve Arnold (b. 1912)
Marilyn Monroe and Clark Gable on the Set of The Misfits (1960)

Detroit Photographic Co.
Mississippi Cotton Gin at Dahomey (1899)

Felice Beato (c.1834-c.1905)
A Yokahama Beauty in the Snow (c.1868)

Supreme Cat Show

Supreme Cat Show competitors Slide Show
Here are cats – 1,455 of them in total, presented throughout one giant arena in cages and on judging platforms – who like being stroked backwards, cats who wouldn't know a shrew or vole if it bit them on the tail, cats that look like Benicio Del Toro, cats that appear to have been squeezed from a tube, fully formed.

Buffalo’s Architecture

Buffalo is just across the river and I used to go there often to shop at Premier Gourmet, to visit the excellent Albright-Knox Gallery or to eat at my favourite Italian restaurant. When the Canadian dollar was in the cellar I stopped crossing the border and never got back in the habit. This article has me hankering to shuffle off to Buffalo.

Inside Mr. Burnham’s Ellicott Square Building.

Nicolai Ouroussoff writes: Buffalo is home to some of the greatest American architecture of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, with major architects like Henry Hobson Richardson, Frederick Law Olmsted, Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright building marvels here. Together they shaped one of the grandest early visions of the democratic American city.

Cairo To Toronto

CBC Radio, bless its heart, has been playing Maryem and Ernie Tollar's Cairo To Toronto CD a lot. It's a world/jazz mix. I like it and you can listen to their Glenn Gould Studio concert here.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Is that a spanner in your pocket...

From mourners in a funeral parlour to a delivery boy and his "big sausage pizza", why is it so easy to spot the opening scenes of porn films, asks Tim Dowling.

Face the Music

Rolling Stone's Rock Star Mug Shots
That's Jim Morrison's mug shot above. He was arrested in 1963 for drunkenness and petty larceny.

The Seven Deadly Sins for Kids

Lovely illustrations from an old kid's book depicting the Seven Deadly Sins - from Rev Guzman's photostream. The sin pictured above is Gluttony.

Artists in Their Studios

From the sumptuously furnished studios of the late 19th century to the austere workrooms of the present day, studio spaces have played a dynamic role in the history of American art-not simply reflecting aesthetic visions, but informing them. This look at artists in their studios, through photographs and documents from the Smithsonian's Archives of American Art, offers a behind-the-scenes view into the life of American artists and their unique work spaces.
Jackson Pollack is pictured above holding a can of paint circa 1950.
See other photos from the 2006 exhibit