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#a430 Spun aluminum pillbox

April 22, 2009

I’m at the far end of the wire. The warmth of the crowd rises up into the moldy canvas peak of the tent here. It pours from their eyes, their upturned, open mouths. I toss the balance pole into the air, pivot the other way, catch the pole and head back across the wire. Their […]

Filed under: Aluminum, Container, Ephemera, Facsimile, Fetish, Microfiction, Model, Objet | Comments (0)

#a408 :: Meggy Jr. RGB

March 30, 2009

It’s finished. My son and I just soldered the last wires into place on this tonight, and it lit up perfectly. The Meggy Jr. RGB – a handheld video game with open-source, programmable memory chip – is ready for business. Eight solid hours we hunched over a dizzying array of resistors, capacitors, transistors and LED, […]

Filed under: Fetish, Instrument, Objet, Tool, Toy | Comments (0)

#a405 :: Qee by Jeff Soto

March 27, 2009

I’ve been a huge, drooling fan of Jeff Soto for years but couldn’t afford his work until I spotted this fine fellow in a little toy store the other side of the reservoir. Yes, he’s mass produced. No, it doesn’t matter. Done and done.

Filed under: Art, Ephemera, Objet, Tool, Toy | Comments (0)

#a403 :: Wooden puzzle

March 25, 2009

Some mysteries we humans hold to be self-evident and unanswerable – except by synthetic, nonscientific means: Consciousness. Identity. Creativity. Beauty. Spirituality. Meaning. Diversity. Freedom. So we make up religions and start cults and set things on fire and paint and write and bloviate and fight and kill and destroy because it’s easier than trying to […]

Filed under: Art, Objet, symbol, Toy | Comments (1)

#a389 :: Amethyst “crystal”

March 11, 2009

She regards it with suspicion. “Amethyst?” The Chinese shopkeeper nods firmly. “Finest, from Xian province. Xian province. Terra cotta warrior. Xian.” He keeps nodding. She drums her French-tipped nails against its too-glossy sides. She pricks at her fingertips with its perfectly asymmetrical point. She hefts it. Rolls it over in her perfumed hand. Then she […]

Filed under: Artifact, Fetish, Microfiction, Mineral, Objet, symbol | Comments (0)

#a365 :: Lead type

February 15, 2009

It’s fitting that I mark the end of my second full year of daily obsession on this blog with such an archetypal handful of heavy little objects: I found these samples of a truly lovely display font in an antique shop in rural Arizona earlier this week – artifacts of a dead technology going for […]

Filed under: Artifact, Ephemera, Jetsam, Objet, symbol, Tool | Comments (2)

#a360 :: Temperance-era novelty bar tool

February 9, 2009

This conflicted fellow was cast in pot-metal and chromed in cheap silver probably more than 100 years ago. His top-hat is a jigger, his feet end in a spoon, the better to mix you a nice drink and present you with a little moral dilemma in the bargain: Do you spoon something into your drink, […]

Filed under: Artifact, Ephemera, Facsimile, My father's HLOs, Objet, Tool | Comments (2)

#a359 :: Silicone dolphin

February 8, 2009

If there’s a story behind this creature, my father will have to supply it. It arrived in a box of things he offered for photography, and it suggests nothing but a happy life aquatic, swimming through the dust in a drawer and surviving on pencil shavings until he’s required to dance on his tail, chatter […]

Filed under: Facsimile, Miniature, My father's HLOs, Objet, Toy | Comments (0)

#a341 :: Obama campaign pin

January 21, 2009

I never repeat heavy little objects. I mean, never. My little daily obsession can be a cruel taskmistress, sometimes commanding me to find something cool to post even when nothing cool has come through my life. But like an idiot samurai, I live and die by a code set in motion long ago and over […]

Filed under: Adornment, Artifact, Ephemera, Facsimile, Fetish, Objet, symbol, Tool, weapon | Comments (0)

#a325 :: Padlock

January 4, 2009

Two chunks of cast brass, a loop of hardened steel, a little red paint. An amulet against burglary. A barrier against the night. Put it in your magpie’s hoard. Slip it into your boxing glove. Clamp it through the hasp of your Navy trunk and lose the key, dooming yourself to a 10-minute round of […]

Filed under: Artifact, Objet, Tool | Comments (0)

#a315 :: Z-card

December 25, 2008

Have I mentioned these? I got a motorcycle in my stocking this year. I picture myself cut about an inch tall from 1/8″-thick styrofoam, clad in teeny, tiny laminate leather, my shiny mug grinning. Flat helmet under my flat arm. Peace to all out there. I hope yours has been a warm and strengthening holiday. […]

Filed under: Ephemera, Miniature, Model, Objet, symbol, Toy | Comments (0)

#a276 :: Plasticene scottie

November 16, 2008

Random scottie facts: Franklin Delano Roosevelt owned one. George WorstPresidentinHistory Bush owned one too. Just days after his master’s party lost the election, Barney bit a reporter. Our family has owned scotties since we first got Captain MacHeath of Edgerstoune (Keefie) when I was just 14. My parents’ current scottie, Bridey, does not have cancer. […]

Filed under: Ephemera, Fetish, Model, Objet, symbol, Toy | Comments (0)

#a253 :: Desk cleaning time

October 24, 2008

You own a lot of shit. You accumulate more of it every day. Sometimes, you have to pick through it to get your desk clean. And you make little piles. That might or might not be photographs of your life told in debris. And yet, you never seem to get rid of the things as […]

Filed under: Adornment, Art, Artifact, Blahg, Ephemera, Facsimile, Fetish, Found Object, Instrument, Jetsam, Life form, Miniature, Model, Objet, Part, symbol, Tool, Toy, weapon | Comments (0)

#a246 :: Creepy Crawlers mold

October 17, 2008

This deeply iconic toy from my youth let you commit a sort of reverse archaeology: Begin with the shapes left in metal by “disgusting” creatures – an aluminum “fossil” that holds the power to create a form of life. Pour plasma-like “Plasti-Goop” into their very absence. Heat it on a small thermoelectric hotplate. Watch the […]

Filed under: Artifact, Objet, Part, Tool, Toy | Comments (0)

#a245 :: Jade torus

October 16, 2008

This lump of polished, lustrous stone – so fetishy I can’t even decide what to do with it yet – came my way for $2 at the swap meet last weekend. It has a wondrous weight and feel in the hand. And it’s made of this stuff which gives it a symbolic potency far deeper […]

Filed under: Adornment, Fetish, Miniature, Objet, symbol | Comments (0)

#A244 :: Obama campaign pin

October 15, 2008

THE U.S. MEDIASPHERE (Oct. 14, post-debate) (HLO) – Joe the Plumber. Indeed. Look, this blog isn’t political. I don’t dump my heart out about the government here. Most days, this stuff is just one more step in my years-long tabletop parade of things. But please, if you’re thinking of voting for one would-be U.S. president […]

Filed under: Adornment, Art, Artifact, Ephemera, Objet, symbol, Tool, Toy, weapon | Comments (0)

#a238 :: Clementine`

October 9, 2008

A tart bang across her tongue. Orange fresh. Hard work won it. She had carried herself well. She deserved this little palm-sized fruit. Even now, moments after she had slit the skin with a thumbnail and started the engine. Despite what she’d done, this was her moment to enjoy her snack. Bracing her thumb, had […]

Filed under: Edible, Microfiction, Objet, symbol | Comments (0)

#a221 :: Petrie

September 22, 2008

At the obvious risk of being (as well as sounding) thoroughly sexist, you never know what nerve you’ll hit with a woman until you hit that nerve dead-on. At the same time I bought RayD8 to back up my photos, top-secret work projects and random droolings, I bought this little orange Mimobot and gave it […]

Filed under: Art, Fetish, Objet, Tool | Comments (0)

#a216 ::

September 17, 2008

Also from my wife’s collection: hollowed, hand-hammered silver of questionable virtue, yet molded with the heavenly curves of a nimbus cloud.

Filed under: Adornment, Art, Found Object, Objet, symbol | Comments (0)

#a214 :: Miniature tempura

September 15, 2008

Tiny morsels of molded silicon, hand-daubed to an irresistible crunchylookingness. Only 900 yen. The linchpin to a successful front-window display in your 1:8-scale restaurant. From the same niche of Japanese collectibles culture as this

Filed under: Facsimile, Fetish, Miniature, Model, Objet | Comments (0)

#a212 :: Hand-carved Indian candlestick

September 13, 2008

This appeared in the house some time in the past month. I have no idea where it came from, beyond the tiny “India” sticker on its base. Around it, a lion chases an elephant that threatens to trample the elephant that flees the lion. Candlelight sounds nice.

Filed under: Art, Found Object, Objet, Tool | Comments (0)

#a204 :: “Eco-soil”

September 5, 2008

We found this stuff sold by the packet all over Brick Lane market. Dry, it looks like colored bug feces. Wet, it transforms to plump pearls of color – a silica-based soil substitute for potting soil, into which one is supposed to shove one’s flowers, adding a juicy splash to one’s Ikeafied bed-sit. As I […]

Filed under: Objet, Tool | Comments (0)

#a191 :: Metal ant

August 23, 2008

A birthday gift from my aunt. I kid you not. Eight rods of steel, artfully bent, and welded to three metal spheres. Where’s he off to? What’s his business?

Filed under: Art, Facsimile, Model, Objet, Toy | Comments (0)

#a187 :: iPhone 3G

August 19, 2008

My birthday gift. My wife’s love in a handheld marvel. My new video game platform. My toy. My crack pipe. My next-gen paid-content conduit. My memory bank. My little wallet-suck. My preeeeciousssss. My underestimation of Apple‘s continued brilliance at industrial design. My PDA. My GPS. My portable Thomas Guide. My jukebox. My phone. The blue […]

Filed under: Art, Fetish, Instrument, Objet, Part, symbol, Tool, Toy, weapon | Comments (0)

#186 :: “Thunderbird”

August 18, 2008

The decision had cost Daniel. Which is why he was standing here now with this ridiculous knife in his hand. Ankle-deep in all the tools he had yanked from the toolbox and flung to the floor as he rifled fruitlessly for a real weapon. weapons. Both blades out. Ready. Wicked. He tried not to look […]

Filed under: Adornment, Fetish, Objet, Tool, Toy, weapon | Comments (0)


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