Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Smyles & Fish - a museum, sort of

River Allée (1988)

Oh dear, I had a student coming in for an appointment, but all I wanted was to explore the magazine journal I'd just discovered on the book giveaway table in the hall on my way to get morning coffee. The "WHILE YOU WERE OUT" note below was inside the front cover. Please read it:

Then I leapt immediately onto the Smyles and Fish website.

What can I tell you about Smyles & Fish? It's a gallery of art (including the painting River Allée (1988) by April Gornik at the top of the post, "Love at the Planetarium" by Neil Swaab, and "L.A. Streetcorner" by Nick Weber, below) and writing that is irreverent and sometimes explosive, painfully creative, original, and insightful the way 4-year-olds are insightful.

For an additional, luxurious treat, click on the artists' names below their works to see their galleries. Wow.

"Love at the Planetarium"

"L.A. Streetcorner"
by Nick Weber

~ . : . ~ ~ . : . ~

One of the links at their online "lounge" is for lists. Here's one of their lists, for top 100 Celebrity Baby Names, funny!

Top 100 Celebrity Baby Names

progenitors: Zowie Bowie, Maddox Jolie
1. Tek
2. Zapp
3. Syringe
4. Biofuel
5. Zynk
7. Podcast
8. Blog
9. Tlön Uqbar
10. Orbis Tertius

progenitors: Peaches Geldof, Apple Martin-Paltrow
11. Fungus
12. Spring
13. Crevice
14. Emu
15. Opium
16. Gizzard
17. Dingo
18. Saffron
19. Glacier
20. Pineapple

progenitors: Brooklyn Beckham, Ireland Baldwin-Basinger
21. Bulgaria
22. Connecticut
23. Iraq
24. Gibraltar
25. Democratic Republic of the Congo
26. North-Northwest
27. Gaza Strip
28. Horizon
29. River Delta
30. Times Square

progenitors: Dylan Thomas Brosnan, Gabriel Kane Day-Lewis
31. Brandon / Brenda
32. Hamlet / Ophelia
33. Zorba / Zorbina
34. Rumrunner
35. Speakeasy
36. Gilgamesh
37. Muhammad / Muhammadina
38. Titanic
39. Jesus
40. Leopold / Molly Bloom

progenitors: Moon-Unit Zappa, America Hoffman
41. Mini Me
42. SnickersTM
43. Unconditional Love
44. Career Boost
45. Box-Office Gold
46. Mishap
47. Stupid (if parents have shirt "I'm with stupid")
48. Blank Slate
49. Work in progress
50. Tongue-in-cheek

progenitors: Melody Depp-Paradis, Lark Song Previn
51. Bluegrass
52. Mezzo Soprano
53. Honk
54. Tom-Tom
55. Fender Stratocaster
56. Xylophone
57. A Cappella
58. Punk
59. Tempo
60. Radiohead

progenitors: Sean Preston Spears-Federline, Indiana August Affleck
61. Billy Bob
62. Donna Sue
63. Peggy Anne
64. Duke Earl Count
65. Colette Beretta
66. Pearl Opal
67. Dingus Dermot
68. Trevor Cassidy
69. Buffalo Springfield
70. Crosby Stills Nash Young

progenitors: Sailor Brinkley-Cook
71. Jog
72. Steroid
73. Dunk
74. Hockey Puck
75. Homerun
76. Taekwon-Jitsu-Shido
77. Ping-Pong
78. Polo
79. Nascar
80. Rugby

progenitors: Blue Allman, Jade Jagger
81. Maroon
82. Vermilion
83. Aquamarine
84. Beige
85. Violet
86. Off-White
87. Burgundy
88. Turquoise
89. Cyan
90. Khaki

progenitors: Shiloh Pitt-Jolie, Suri Cruise
91. Cashmere
92. Angostura
93. Snuffaluffagus
94. Porcini
95. Glubdubdrib
96. Absinth
97. Mango Chutney
98. Tenochtitlan
99. Ozymandias
100. Kuala Lumpur


E Mama said...

LOL Snuffaluffagus!! HA HA

ds said...

Too funny! Thanks! (exit laughing)

photowannabe said...

Thanks for giving me a smile for the day. Just found out we're not getting the refund we expected on our taxes. I needed a smile.

Susan said...

LMAO! My favorite is Gizzard, but I disagree as to which category. It should be under redneck. :D

And Spring is not a new one. Remember the actress, Spring Byington? She was in a lot of TV shows in the 50's and 60's, including a regular role on 'Laramie'. She was Daisy Cooper.

I love the 'L.A. Streetcorner' painting.

Bob Johnson said...

Lol, love the while you were out note.

The L.A. Streetcorner image is awesome, all of them are great, I'll have to check out the site, thanks for the link!!

CottageGirl said...


Fender Stratocaster!

So funny! Thanks for the laugh!!!

California Girl said...

Maybe I'm old-fashioned but give me Louise and Alice and Kate and Bryan and Nicholas any time. These goofy names are way too self-conscious. Imagine being the poor kid stuck with the name? A high school friend of mine did baby sit Moon Unit & Dweezil when we were in college. Zappa lived in the Valley at the time.

rauf said...

LA street corner is haunting Ruth,
funny note from a frustrated trier,
picked up some very cruel names from Claudia's blog
here are some.

Justin Case
Barb Dwyer
Stan Still
Terry Bull

please read the rest in Claudia's post

Anonymous said...

Oh dear!!
Now I am afraid, what name will come to my 6th grandchild next autumn :)

Nice spring days to you Ruth!

( We will leave Finland next week for China, wish us luck ! )

Helena said...

We're just desperately trying to figure out a name for our boy to be born in July so this will probably be a big help. :-D

Peter said...

An interesting site you found! To find a nice name for your kids (or dogs) is not any job! I don’t know if these lists will really help! :-)

There are some "funny name" lists on the web if you wish to find more!

Butler and Bagman said...

The names were intriguing but the custodians metaphorical message was priceless!

Don said...

Some interesting names at my school this year are:


Napoleon Outlaw

I will use the list you posted to help name some new hens!!

Oliag said...

Thanks for a good laugh this taxes and bills AM!...It's a fun site to wander through:)

shicat said...

Oh my, what a fun morning you had. The while you were out note is just to wonderful,"reach into your heart and bend the rod or lever back to where it was you were young.Maybe the disk or ball is worn from the swirling violence of many years. Couldn't you see this as a wedding anniversary card? Nick Weber is amazing. I even like the name/title Smyles and Fish. Interesting names.David wanted to name our son Holgar? What!Ann Arbor Antique mart this Sat.&Sun.and Treasure Mart is open on Sat.

Be one with the Fro said...

Hey Ruth.

Once I posted that I knew you were going to read it and may take it out of context. I've been thinking about it all night. When I wrote that post I was NOT aiming it at you whatsoever. I've been so busy lately that I haven't been commenting on anyones blog as much as I used. I was gearing that blog towards the creators of "blog of note" and ONLY the creators. Like I said I feel that the "blog of note" is only showing one aspect of the blogging world and I really don't appreciate that. I absolutely love your blog so I would never want to make you feel like I was pulling you into the mix.

I am still following you. I'm sorry that I haven't been commenting lately. I do come to your page still...I just don't have as much time to form a comment in my head. I started a class that has been taking up a lot of time so I only have time to post, not comment. I really didn't mean to hurt your feelings whatsoever. I am really really sorry. I feel horrible. I know we've exchanged quite few words for a while and we "drifted apart" a month or two ago. I definitely didn't mean for that to happen.

I hope you will follow me again. I always appreciate your input. My class is slowing up so I will have more time to comment and look at people's blogs again.

I'm sorry again.

Be one with the Fro said...

You are absolutely right, Ruth! I definitely will be "keeping it real" with my blog. This was a learning experience. For the better I hope.

Loring Wirbel said...

When I read the post-it note, all I could think of was, "I've tried that, and it leaves the water running between flushes," which brought to mind the immortal Tom Waits line,
"The toilet is running so shake the handle,
and the telephone's ringing, it's Mrs. Randall,
and where the hell are my goddam sandals?"

So Ruth, I'm writing this from a Seoul Internet cafe, and we took a big groups of folks from all continents (even Africa and South Asia!) to the DMZ today, got wonderful pics and videos, and this is all so cool.

Koreans have wonderful and quirky senses of humor. There's a popular fast food joint that has cartoons of Pikachu-like creatures and the English slogan "Chicken and Beer! Chicken and Beer!!"

More later from your spy-guy correspondent with microcameras hidden in his hair.

Be one with the Fro said...

Of course I forgot to comment on the baby names hahahaha are you kidding me? These names are uhh how shall I say this...these names are completely and utterly ridiculous. Yes, I said it hahaha I am in total awe that people would actually name their children: Glubdubdrib, Steroid, Blank Slate, etc!

Ruth said...

E Mama, do you remember Snuffaluffagus? Wasn't it the big blobby shaggy elephant-ish character on Sesame Street?

Ruth said...

DS, I thought you'd enjoy those.

Ruth said...

Oh dear, Sue, so sorry. Bleh.

Ruth said...

Susie, because rednecks eat gizzards? Haha.

No, I can't say I remember Spring Byington, a little familiar. But I wasn't watching TV then like you and your sister. We didn't have a TV until the mid-60s.

I love that painting too. I hope you checked out his gallery, there are some other landscapes, so pretty.

Ruth said...

Bob, it was a lot of fun to find such a surprise first thing in the morning.

Ruth said...

I know, CottageGirl, that was one of my favorites! Hahaha. Another one I loved: Blog.

Ruth said...

rauf, those are cruel names. Don's cousin was named Ruth Ada Beadle. Don's dad pointed it out to the parents just after she was born and they announced she was Ruth Ada. I don't think they were pleased.

Oh, and would you believe, I went to college with two girls named Merry and Holly Christmas. I saw that there was a Mary Christmas at Claudia's too. But this one was Merry!

Ruth said...

Haha, Helena, no I hope these don't help.

I just really couldn't believe Gwyneth named her daughter Apple. Thank goodness the rest of these are made up.

Ruth said...

Peter, it is an important job to name kids. Of course if you are a celebrity, they will be hounded their whole lives anyway, so I suppose it doesn't matter one bit what you name them. But for the rest of us ordinary blokes, imagine naming them Ireland or America? I do know a little girl named Brooklyn - that's kinda cute.

Ruth said...

B & B, I thought it was too. Priceless and sad. :(

Ruth said...

Don, I always look forward to your first day of school just to hear the new names. But no one can ever beat Napoleon Outlaw. If he doesn't become a football player one day, it will be a shame.

Ruth said...

Oliag, why does it feel like we just did taxes, and it's already been a year? Thank goodness Don does ours, using TurboTax.

Ruth said...

Good one, Cathy, anniversary card, hehe.

Holgar? Hahahahaha. Where did that come from? I've never even heard it before.

Thanks for the tip on the A2 Antique martket! I went once long ago. I don't know what Treasure Mart is. I'd better google it.

Ruth said...

Don't know how I skipped over you, California Girl, hahaha, only celebrities could name their kids names like the progenitors and get away with it. Thankfully the others are from Shay Azoulay's imagination.

I wonder how Moon Unit & Dweezil behaved?

Ruth said...

Leena, my dear, I don't know how I skipped you too. I'm so happy for you on #6! Such a fortunate child to be born into such love and a grandma's arms like yours.

Please enjoy China, I look forward to seeing it through your lens when you return.

Ruth said...

Tiffany, no no, they are not real. This guy named Shay Azoulay made them up, pretending some real celebrity kids with goofy names named them.

I love HTML, hehe.

Ruth said...

Dear Loring!

I'm glad you saw this post, because I was pretty sure you'd like the Smyles & Fish site. Good ole Tom Waits.

So, you went to the DMZ, la di da - that's so amazing, how many people have ever done that?

Please stay healthy and give Mr. Wonewy my regards. I'll be dying to hear about it when you get back. The experience should be good for about ten Iconocurmudgeon posts, no?

S.K. Azoulay said...

I'm glad you found this old list of mine and have given it new life. I enjoyed seeing all the comments, which is something I rarely get as a writer.

It's a shame Smyles & Fish is now virtually defunct, I've worked with people there and they're all very talented, but it seems all such commendable ventures are destined to a premature death (though exploring the site is still worthwhile, there are a lot of interesting relics there).

Ruth said...

Shay, thank you for the honor of your visit. I'm sorry that S & F is defunct too.

Best wishes to you and your writing.