Friday, April 18, 2008

One Year

According to my site meter, I have been keeping track of visitors to Bite and Smile since April 24, 2007. Before I even discovered what a site meter was and that I could get one for free, I had been posting since April 22, 2007.

Over the year, having a blog has sharpened my writing skills. I move more quickly and am generally satisfied with my product. This has been helpful to me when working freelance under a deadline. In the quest for generating daily material, it has made me more aware of the world news. This has also made me more cynical. A part of that is acquiring a healthy dose of skepticism. Another part of that is just plain thinking humanity has been fucked over by greed and there's no turning back. Trying to make funny out of that has been a challenge.

It also has me questioning the value of entertainment. Why do we do this? Who are we helping? How are we helping? Should we really be trying to take people's minds off of reality, whatever that is? Isn't that as much of a distraction as a bunch of flag pin-less people talking about Obama's lack of a flag pin? Am I being a part of the problem?

I mulled over the possibility of doing a blog for quite some time. My biggest fear was that I wouldn't have anything interesting to say. That also became the reason to do it. If I don't have at least one interesting thing to say every day, that's pathetic. By the very nature of being human, I should be able to come up with one goofy nugget a day that people can relate to.

So, after a year, what I really want to know is, who are you and why do you read this thing? What would you like to see more of? How has this been helpful to you? Going into my second year, I want to make sure I am providing as best I can what you, friendly readers, are looking for. Let me know what's on your mind about Biting and Smiling.


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Yesterday, I asked...

"Yale art major Aliza Shvarts has outraged many of her fellow art students because her senior project features her what?"

50% said "stool samples"
- I made art with that when I was two.

34% said "collection of pap smears"
- Nature's little Rorschach test.

No one said "breast milk"

16% got it right with "forced miscarriages"

According to The Yale Daily News, beginning next Tuesday, Art major Aliza Shvarts will be displaying a documentation of a nine-month process during which she artificially inseminated herself "as often as possible" while periodically taking abortifacient drugs to induce miscarriages. Her exhibition will feature video recordings of these forced miscarriages as well as preserved collections of the blood from the process. The goal in creating the art exhibition, Shvarts said, was to spark conversation and debate on the relationship between art and the human body.

The display of Schvarts' project will feature a large cube suspended from the ceiling. Schvarts will wrap hundreds of feet of plastic sheeting around this cube; lined between layers of the sheeting will be the blood from Schvarts' self-induced miscarriages mixed with Vaseline in order to prevent the blood from drying and to extend the blood throughout the plastic sheeting.

Schvarts will then project recorded videos onto the four sides of the cube. These videos, captured on a VHS camcorder, will show her experiencing miscarriages in her bathrooom tub, she said. Similar videos will be projected onto the walls of the room.

On the floor under her exhibit will be Don Hall's collection of mason jars filled with his own poop. Each one signed and autographed and for sale.


HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) - A Yale University art student duped the student newspaper with a story about inducing repeated abortions on herself and using the blood for her senior art project, the school said Thursday.

The story about Aliza Shvarts' project, published Thursday in the Yale Daily News, swept across blogs and media outlets - including the Drudge Report, Fox News and The Washington Post - before Yale issued a statement saying it investigated and found it all to be a hoax that was Shvarts' idea of elaborate "performance art."

Read the rest of the ASSOCIATED PRESS story HERE.