Right now, as I type this, Peter Wilson is watching LOST. Now it wouldn’t be so strange for a fan to be catching up on the series, considering that after six years of mysteries it’ll be coming to a dramatic end this Sunday with a long-awaited two-and-a-half hour finale. But Peter’s been watching for the past 35 hours straight, and he’ll continue watching (stopping only to change DVDs, take bathroom breaks and sleep a scheduled few hours) for the next few days up until Sunday’s conclusion.
While the Montreal native couldn’t get any of his hometown friends to re-watch the entire series alongside him, he’s got Ustream chatters cheering him on throughout this epic journey. (TUNE IN LIVE RIGHT NOW!) At 2AM on Thursday Peter’s got about 55 users watching him while he watches. Together they’re re-living some of the series’ best moments. Only a few episodes ago, they all cried out “WAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLTTTTT” during a pivotal scene where a main character’s son is kidnapped. When user “Sweettooth30” has to call it a night, she promises to “check you tommorrow.” “Keep it up,” she adds. “Thanks Sweettooth,” Peter says from his couch.
By watching the entire 5,500 minutes of LOST in less than a week, Peter is not only attempting to set a world record for watching all of the series in the shortest amount of time, but he’s also doing so to raise money for Child’s Play — a charity that raises money to buy toys for sick children stuck in hospitals. (Make a donation through Peter’s blog.) I had a few pre-marathon questions for the record setter, promising to occasionally pop-in the chatroom (you’ll see me chatting as “eloisehawking”) and check back in after the finale.
Are you already a LOST fan? As in, how hardcore are you about the series?
I am definitely already a LOST fan and I have been one for about 3 years now. Typically I listen to roughly 8 hours of Lost podcasts a week, so I think that makes me sufficiently hardcore.
Aside from the charity, what inspired you about the show and it’s longevity/fanbase to set this world record?
I’ve always been a fan of a long, drawn out story. Ever since I was a kid I’ve been a fan of comics, long book series etc. The problem with this is that very rarely do you ever get to sit down and experience the whole story from beginning to end. I always wanted to do such a thing and realized that a LOST marathon such as this would be a perfect opportunity.
What have you done to prepare?
Apart from get a lot of sleep the day before I haven’t done much specifically to prepare. That being said, I’m not stranger to watching TV for extended periods of time. I’m the kind of person who could buy a season of a TV series on DVD and then watch the whole thing in a sitting. In fact just recently I’ve done this with both Dexter and Breaking Bad. Then again those are 12 or 13 episode seasons, 121 episodes of television is likely to be a very different experience.
LOST isn’t usually a participatory sport, meaning, serious fans don’t usually enjoy watching it in noisy groups. Are you worried that the spectators in the chatroom might distract you from your primary objective?
Well I’ve already seen all of the episodes and torn them all apart searching for clues, so I’m not going to be analyzing every detail of the show. I think that the chat room will be more of a help than a hindrance as I think it will be a valuable tool for keeping me awake. I think reading people’s opinions of both what I am doing and the episodes themselves will definitely be interesting.
Along from setting a record and raising money are you looking to find any deeper, hidden meanings?
I am going to be watching the show fairly carefully. For example I do plan to try and keep a running tally of how many times Ben tells a verifiable lie throughout the series, which should both be fun and a challenge.
Who’s your favorite character and what’s your favorite mystery?
I think my favorite out of all the original characters would be Jack. I can identify with him as I’m kind of a skeptical kind of guy and I found his character arc to be the most well thought out and satisfying one of the series. Also: who doesn’t love bearded, depressed, addict Jack?
My favorite mystery is most likely why Radzinsky drew the Blast Door Map. Looking back on that mystery it really doesn’t make any sense that he drew it and it really didn’t serve much of a purpose, but I really used to love all that Dharma stuff. Also, why does Pierre Chang use all those aliases, that makes no sense. I find it kind of unfortunate that those are, frankly, never going to get resolved but I honestly don’t mind as they’re fairly irrelevant.
Do you think you’ll be greater affected when the show ends than any other typical LOST fan?
Yeah, I’ll probably get affected more than the average LOST fan. If nothing else, I’ll probably have more free time. Also I’ll probably cry harder, though I’ll try not to cry on camera. No promises.
"Conference organizers and publishers, I do not think you are racist. And I do not think you are woman-haters. I think you are probably very nice people. I think you are good to your friends, your girlfriends, your wives, your children. I think you hire and treat your employees fairly and well.
“Open the action up! Readers love to go on a journey with the memoirist—whether it’s a divorcée’s spiritual quest in India to find herself or a journalist’s rollicking cross-country trip to discover the best hamburgers in each state. You’ve written about a young girl confined to an attic for two years. Be honest—which would you rather read? Correct: The United States of Hamburgers, now available wherever paperback are sold.”—McSweeney’s: The Rejection of Anne Frank
“Louis C.K. : Wants to change his name to something awful like Farty McCrablice and then cure a disease, so they’ll have to name a street after him, and the President will have to say, “God bless Farty McCrablice”; forgot to start playing saxophone when he was 14; flying in an airplane is a miracle, so people shouldn’t complain; airlines’ motto should just be, “We Can Fly!” and that should be enough; borrowed a friend’s car where the horn kept honking itself, so he started yelling at people whenever it did (“Hey, lady walking — you suck!”); arrested for driving without a license; got strip-searched and was told to life his testicles; “Can I use my hand?”; saw two kids in the back of a station wagon with that really “crappy look on their faces,” so he flipped them off; suspects parents always want to flip off their kids.”—
Ricky & I went to a taping for Louis C.K.’s new FX show on Monday night and sat right up front and at one point Louis put his notebook with all of his jokes on our table so it wouldn’t be in the shot and I kept trying to read it upside down and it basically went like this: “Handjob / Bathroom / I’m 42.”
Jessica covered the rise of girl geeks for Newsweek back in 2008, prompted, in part, by the growing popularity of the Girl Geek Dinners. At the time, Jess wrote that young, tech savvy women were embracing the “geek” label for themselves—and, in turn, redefining it. The women she talked to didn’t use the word “feminism”—if anything, they embraced the label “geek”—but they never disparaged it, either.
Our view is that it’s pointless to force the label “feminism” onto people who’d rather not identify with it; what’s important is that we believe in what it stands for. But it’s nevertheless discouraging to hear young, smart, female leaders publicly misuse the term. Which brings us to a BBC story about the London girl geek dinners last week, a “classic case of feminism in action,” the author writes, despite the group being wary of the term. “In a sense, [the dinners are] feminist [in that they] aspire to a lot of the same ideals,” says the geek organizer, “but I don’t want it to be seen as ‘feminist’ as this can be seen as something marginal or negative.” We may not agree, but we can respect that. But then, this:
We’re not trying to be radical or disruptive, but to show that women have a place in technology.
And… there it is. Feminists: radical and disruptive. Will we ever learn?
As some of you may already know, I co-founded a new media art pop-up gallery this winter called Blue Box Gallery. We had our first show in March, featuring the work of Gabriel Barcia-Colombo, and are planning another show in July. Right now, however, we’re working with a new restaurant called 4food on their restaurant opening. The restaurant features a 220 sq ft. LED screen, and we’ve been asked to curate a digital arts showcase to be displayed on the screen during one of the opening events.
So, that being said, please see our Call to Artists below! The event will be the last week of May or the first week of June (we are confirming the dates now). I would appreciate your help spreading the word about this, so please forward along to any artists you may know, artist communities or listservs. Thanks so much!
CALL TO ARTISTS Blue Box Gallery Digital Arts Event at 4food, May 2010
Blue Box Gallery is currently seeking submissions for a multi-work digital art installation, which will occur in late May. The installation is intended for a one-night-only event that will take place at 4food (East Midtown, Manhattan), a brand new restaurant company with a focus on healthful fast food and an eco-conscious lifestyle.
The event will be one of several “themed” private events taking place during the restaurant’s “soft opening” period in late May/early June. These events—celebrations of 4food’s progressive new approach to “counter culture”—will attract a wide array of media outlets, local businesses, creatives and local tastemakers. Oh…and did we mention there’s a 220 sq. ft. LED screen involved???!!!
We are seeking digital artworks for display on a massive 11.5 ft x 20.2 ft (220 sq ft) LED screen, the centerpiece of the restaurant space (see digital renderings here). We are accepting all manner of digital art submissions (up to 4 works/person), ranging from software to video-based artwork and anything else relevant and appropriate for LED display. We will be selecting 8-10 works to feature during the two hour-long event.
Screen specs: - 3520 mm x 6160 mm (roughly 11.5 ft x 20.2 ft, or 220 sq. ft) - Single face, full-color indoor virtual LED display - Resolution: 160 pixels x 280 pixels - Brightness: approx. 4000cd. - Scanning frequency: 1185 Hz. - Color processing: 15 bits - Software: LED managing software - System: Windows 2000, Windows XP
Materials for Submission: (Please make sure to title all documents with your full name!) - Artist CV - Link to Website (if applicable) - Video(s) and screenshots/image stills (if applicable) of work - 150-word (minimum) abstract about your piece(s) - Comprehensive list of any/all tech and installation requirements
Taking its name from a blue box, an early “phreaking” tool used to gain unauthorized access to telephone consoles, Blue Box Gallery aims to showcase contemporary artwork that redefines, remixes and reinterprets – in other words, hacks – conventional art-making practices. The notion of a “blue box” also makes a conspicuous reference to the “white cubes” of modern-day galleries and museums to which Blue Box acts as a foil, in keeping with hacking’s tradition of borrowing and appropriation. As a mobile gallery, Blue Box brings New Media art to a rotating host of alternative urban spaces.
Blue Box’s artists harness the potential of emerging technologies and re-imagine them in unique and innovative ways, all the while investigating the cultural implications of these new tools. Our artists are as much a product of the digital age as they are responsible for defining it. They are social surveyors, primed to examine the continuously evolving relationship between technology and culture.
4food is a socially networked quick service restaurant company. Our mission is to bring fast food that’s fresh, delicious, and nutritious to all ages, lifestyles, incomes, and ethnicities. No fads, fillers, or anything artificial. We’re revolutionizing counter culture, in real-time.
Location #1 opens on Tuesday, June 1st, 2010 at 40th Street and Madison Avenue, between Bryant Park and Grand Central Station — the heart of the highest density workday population in the US.