Monday, October 30, 2006
Yes, folks, it's that time of year again. My annual New York Magazine feature article about high weirdness on the frontiers of completely unnecessary medical science has hit the stands. Last fall, as you may remember, I brought you more than anyone could want to know about the sex lives of lab rats dosed with the experimental aphrodisiac PT-141. This year I get up close and personal with the grueling "calorie restriction" diet, a daily caloric regimen that's about two breadsticks away from a hunger strike and just about scientifically guaranteed to add decades to your life. Only one small piece of the puzzle remains for science to work out: how anybody but the most obsessive life-extension geeks can stick with it. God knows I couldn't. I was a CR cultist-in-training for two months, lost 20 pounds and a small piece of my mind, and herewith offer up the whole tawdry episode for the world's amusement and yours. Read on...
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Jane Reilly Dibbell, 1938-2006
My mother died two nights ago. It's been a sad couple days, but she died well, surrounded by people she loved who loved her too. My thanks to all who've sent me your sympathies. For those who want to know more about how it happened and how best to remember her, here's the place: http://janedibbell.blogspot.com.
Sunday, October 01, 2006
It's been a busy month, and friends and colleagues used to bumping into me from time to time in Chicago, South Bend, or Azeroth may by this time be wondering where the hell I've been. Herewith a roundup:
I spent the first week of September in and around Shanghai, China, visiting gold farms for an assignment from the New York Times Magazine. The journey blew my mind, and I expect the resulting article to blow at least a few of yours when it comes out (in November, most likely).
On September 19 I flew to Malmo, Sweden, for the Nordic Games Conference (aimed at Scandinavian game developers), where I gave a keynote address, made the acquaintance of an interesting young games scholar named Vili Lehdonvirta, and reconnected with his always interesting elders T.L. Taylor, Espen Aarseth, Mary Flanagan, et al.
From there I flew to Paris, France, where I remain, though not for long. Tomorrow, October 2, I'll take the train up to Oxford, UK, where I'll be speaking at the invitation of the Oxford business school's Doug Holt. And on Thursday I will fly from Paris to Athens, Greece, to join an illustrious crew in addressing the crowd at the games-themed 2006 Medi@terra International Art and Technology Festival.
Catch me if you can, and actually it's not that hard. I'm currently in the midst of a two-week online engagement at the WELL, where folks are discussing my book Play Money in the Inkwell conference. It's read-only for nonWELLians, technically, but anyone can join in indirectly by sending comments to email@example.com.
Those in need of a more direct connection can always reach me via Skype (juliandibbell), and now more easily than ever: I've rented a U.S. phone number for the duration of my travels. Dial (909) 581 4744 and you'll be patched through to my Skype line. Really.