Commercial Smart Devices

One day as I was fast-forwarding through the commercials of a show I recorded, I noticed an inordinate number of scenes, however brief, of smartphones whizzing by in the ads. Practically every commercial displayed a smartphone or computer of some type, regardless of the product being advertised. The innumerable number of smart devices are less obvious when watching the commercials at normal speed, but the rapid succession of images brought them to light. My subsequent inspection of commercials have revealed a bit less than my initial discovery, but it’s still striking.

On the other hand, there are movie.

How many demons can dance on the head of a pin?

I came across this article from The Western Journal, a conservative website founded by conservative opinion commentator Floyd Brown, which critiques a HuffPost Q&A session with Penny Lane, director of the documentary Hail Satan?

The critiquing article primarily lamented HuffPost’s failure to correct Lane’s inaccurate depiction of theistic Satanism (as opposed to atheistic Satanism) and its history.

The critique has a modicum of weight to it. There are indeed practitioners of theistic Satanism, in far-right Nazi groups for example. Additionally, The Western Journal article cites Santa Barbara Professor Emeritus Jeffrey Russell’s work on the history of theistic Satanism. I have not read any of Russell’s books, but a review of an Amazon product description to his tome A History of Witchcraft reveals, “Whether the diabolical witchcraft for which men and women went to the stake ever existed is open to question. What matters more is that it was believed by intellectuals and peasants alike.”

Here is a short history of the many incarnations of the the devil as depicted in the Bible from The Biblical Archaeology Society.

Terry Gilliam’s Don Quixote film finally hits the big screen after 25 years

By Jennifer Ouellette @ Ars Technica

“The problem is that people have very high expectations,” Gilliam told the BBC in May 2017. “A lot of people say I’m a fool to make the film, and that it would have been better to let people imagine how great it would have been rather than making it a reality and disappointing them. People love Roman ruins because they’re not complete and you can imagine them. So I may be making a great mistake. Maybe the film would be better as a fantasy.”

The Two Killings of Sam Cooke

By Gail Mitchell @ Billboard

The bigger thing is that Cooke, Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Dr. King and Jim Brown were all circling each other and learning from each other. It was this robust intellect; people poised to shape and change our culture. And we lost every single one of them except Brown. Examining what we lost as a culture and spending time in that space was a beautiful learning experience.