August 31, 2003 3:32 AM



August 30, 2003 2:50 PM

In a few days you'll hear about the launch of a far and wide-reaching Open Source blogging venture which I have been invited to participate in. Watch this space!

Meanwhile, the admirably thorough Hutton inquiry into the circumstances leading to the apparent suicide of Dr.David Kelly has rightly been preoccupying the media and the minds of many of us here in Britain. Last night I got a garbled telepathic message from the PM that he was in need of urgent advice and could I please stop by for a chat. I couldn't refuse, could I? Full report of our interview coming up later today.


August 28, 2003 9:36 PM

Vanity vanity all is vanity and the goddess Vanity, together with her lover Technologicus, have some pretty good tricks up their shiny, automated sleeves, designed to turn us all into worshippers. Until very recently, I didn't know that 'stats'meant statistics about traffic on one's website and that I could get them from my own web host - not only from that tiny checkerboard thingy (inserted by N when I wasn't looking) which only tells you what's been happening since you put it there - but the full Monty, pretty charts and all, going right back into ancient history, to last April when I emerged from outer darkness into blogospherous light.

Yesterday was exactly four months since that event, coinciding with Martians not invading the earth, so I decided to have a peek at My Full Stats. Well, all I can say is wow. WOW. Hits to Blaugustine from the twenty-seventh of April until now - am I ready for this? - 106, 876. OK, I know they're not all real visitors - a goodly number must be times I myself have logged on. And another large lot has to be from scammers and spammers trying to find new suckers. Even so, the remaining few thousand ain't a bad score for the first halting cybersteps of a two-dimensional being.

Joy of stats


August 27, 2003 8:38PM

Saw a brilliant, ground-breaking film last night: American Splendor (ironic title) at a special posterscreening organized by COMICA Comics Festival. Ashamed to say I'd never heard of Harvey Pekar whose autobiographical story this is. He was there in person to take questions from the audience afterwards, along with his ballsy wife Joyce Brabner, their 15-year old foster daughter Danielle and the actor Paul Giamatti who plays Harvey in the movie. Pekar's cracked, rasping voice narrates the story, which translates to the screen what was originally a comic book - or rather a series of comic books written by Pekar and illustrated by various cartoonists. What held my rapt attention from the first minute to the last was the way the ordinary, uneventful, heartbreakingly un-splendid life of this Everyman subtly becomes extraordinary by its unvarnished truthfulness and the film's brilliantly original technique. Interviews with the real Pekar and his family are blended into the main narrative interpreted by actors who, in turn, sometimes become realistic cartoons, complete with speech bubbles and frames pencilled around the action. All this accompanied by a great bluesy, jazzy sound-track. Difficult to describe the impact of this film. It won't be released here in London until January but I understand it's out in the U.S. right now. Do not fail to see it. And check out the comic book cover American Splendor series of graphic novels too.




August 25, 2003

Take a standAnother boost to my attention-craving today: Heather has arranged a new space for me in the outback of SoulFood Cafe....the outback? Yeah, well, it looks just as good as all the rest. And that's not all: an Italian website devoted to comics has interviewed N about me (interview to go up on their site in Sept.) Heh . Meanwhile things are not improving in the world and what am I doing about it?


August 24, 2003 2:36 AM

It's still night to me but early morning to some. And new pages to the gnovel are up and looking good, if I do say so meself.

Please go there now and tell me if you agree. To tempt you, here is a little sample.

Augustine collects tears






August 23, 2003 4:15 PMHow's your conscience today, Tony?

I have no comment to add to this image. Later tonight I'll be posting some new pages to the gnovel.


August 20, 2003 4:13 PM

On the left-hand index of our home page you'll see a new category after Photos: Writings. This is where Natalie is beginning to store her articles, workshops, teaching notes, poems, investigations, random ideas. Ho hum. She wants me to point this out because, in replying to Beth's post about persons as places, N mentioned a workshop she gave on the subject and decided to put the text here instead of in a letter. OK? I've done my duty, now read The Country Within and add any comments about it here. Sigh. I'm going to have a tea-break.


9:47 PM - Whew and aaargh. Trauma, travail and gnashing of teeth. I've just chopped the whole blog into chunks by month and created the new Augustine's Blog Archive to store them. I have done this against my will, forced by the intolerably slow loading endured and cursed by me and all other non-broadband users. So goodbye continuity, hello loading speed?
New visitors, I entreat you: come to the archive now and see what came before.



August 18, 2003 6:57 PM

Tomorrow will be two years since our mother, Blanche, died. Coincidentally, there is a beautiful new page for her in SoulFood Cafe, with more of her paintings and a photo-bio of her. Go and see it. Tomorrow I'll put flowers on her gravestone, the inscription on which reads: Tu est la fleur eternelle.(You are the eternal flower).It is a quote from a letter which Sacha, our father, wrote to her in his Russian-accented, ungrammatical but poetic French, when they were young and in love in Paris. Here is a portion of the actual letter. I'll translate, roughly:

Some flowers are born and some will bloom. You are both, because you are reborn each morning and blossom each evening, and your smile is the sun which illuminates the gardener. You are the flower that one does not pick, for it is eternal, like love.

love letter



August 16, 2003 6:20 PM



America's blackout


August 15, 2003 2:16 AM

COMMENTS This won't do, Augustine


August 9, 2003 10:54 PM

It's too hot to write, to draw, to think or to sit before a hot computer. If anybody still denies global warming let them come and stew in the steam bath that is London this week. I may be absent for a couple more days - my features have melted and need restoration.



August 7, 2003 1:01 AM

In the current Royal Academy of Arts Magazine there is an interesting article by Sarah Dunant about that ultimate Renaissance man, Leonardo da Vinci. What struck me most of all, of course, were certain characteristics which the big L and I have in common. Listen to Ms Dunant:

" At best, Leonardo was indeed a Renaissance man. But at worst he was the painter/decorator from hell, the guy with the great ideas and the charming sell, who never finishes the job. Vasari puts it politely: 'Leonardo's profound mind was so ambitious that this in itself was an impediment'....."

Doesn't that remind you of somebody - maybe you? Well it fits me perfectly so this means I qualify as Renaissance, um, cartoon person. All of which leads me back, in a roundabout way, to the subject of Inertia. Appropriately, today is N's birthday. Not mine, I don't do birthdays.

Augustine lectures on Inertia and Identity

Techie problem: can't seem to get resolution right so that both image and text can be sharp and not create huge file size. Re-did the above 3 times - either the text was unreadable or images went out of focus. Now the images are too dim. Aaargh. Any suggestions, comments, whatever?



August 4, 2003 3:15 AM

Interrupted by N who insisted on participating in a 26 Things international photographic scavenger hunt which she read about on Dave Pollard's blog. So of course I couldn't get on with my project while she hogged the computer and fiddled about with her innumerable photographs. Was this necessary? You tell me. If you want to see her selection(deleted). Her 26 will be added to their already bulging file. Don't worry, I shall be back later to expose the machinations of Inertia.


August 3, 2003 12:41 PM

Discovered Dick Jone's weblog, a seamless blend of lucid political insight, beautifully crafted poetry and prose by an Englishman. I keep finding new links to add to my inner circle of cyber friends but this is both a blessing and a handicap because the whole process becomes yet another excuse not to get on with one's real work. So my theme for today - a theme Rob Patersonhasbeen exploring from his own perspective - is identity: how Identity gets blocked by Inertia.

Click here to see my early take (1985) on the subject. If you've clicked, then you've met the Inertia Monster. Augustine kicks Inertia Here it is in a naively optimistic mobile toy (made 1985, on August 3rd). In reality the Monster is alive and well and living right here and now, laughing at the feeble kicks I give it. I haven't yet mastered how to animate images with my Dreamweaver software or I could show how this thing works: my foot goes up and down and catches in the notches of the wheel, spinning the Monster round.

Much more on the Inertia VS Identity topic later today. Or tomorrow.


(Right: Mobile, balsa wood & acrylic 17 X 12 cms. NdA 1985)