The Brilliance!


We’re really internet and we’re really back. A website about things Benjamin , Chuck , Virgil , and various friends & guests think are interesting. Little-to-no specific focus, a bit odd, speling errors, and incredibly culturally relevant.

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Oh snap! You bought a fake Rembrandt!

This is the ‘nerd’ article for the day. I honestly found this crazy interesting. Considering people could have spend $20M+ at Christie’s for a painting by the dude who got Mr. Rembrandt his coffee every morning. Snap! The whole write-up, from, is about using highly complex math and computer imaging to determine if a painting is truly a Rembrandt or a work from one of his students. Yikes…could you imagine? I’d be like ‘…yo, I kept the receipt, can I get my $20 mil back?...’ What’s wild to me is that the Met in NYC has 42 Rembrandts and half of them they aren’t sure about. Half?! That’s wild. Speaking of ‘wild’…this post was kind of…wild. And you corny Niketalk kids were mad about a pair of fake white/white Ones? **** OMG IS THIS A FAKE REMBRANDT!?!?! PLZ READ – NO 56K ****

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Dov Charney on 20/20!

I’ll be honest…I have held mixed feelings on Dov’s whole thing. The whole lawsuit thing and all that. I don’t know…seems like its all a bit exaggerated. Would those people be suing if American Apparel wasn’t opening 90+ stores and making all sorts of money? I of course don’t condone any sort of sexual harassment, unacceptable. But yeah, check this interesting excerpt from the 20/20 covering 4 companies that are considered ‘different’ in their approach to being successful. I’m personally inspired by American Apparel and that success they have had by going against overseas manufacturing and focusing on paying their workforce a fair, and admirable, wage. I don’t know…I think the dude from 20/20 was trying to get a bit sensational with stuff…and he was corny with it. Plus, check where Dov lives! Interesting and insightful. Link to the Quicktime movie below. ***I forgot to give a shout-out to Justin on this, thanks for the link man.

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Are you kidding me?! This might knock Fiji right out of first place. Excuse my rookie status with these paradise like islands…but I have never even heard of this place. And I still have no idea how to pronounce it. So here is the deal, it’s located off the east shores of Africa, its made up of 41 islands and roughly 74 sand cays, the flight from London is about 10 hours they say, the temp ranges from 75-90 degrees and the water is crazy tropical and gets as warm as 84 degrees – 100% tropical paradise, waterfalls, jungle, all sorts of rare/endangered tropical flowers and plants native only to these islands, and off-shore banking seems to be a common sport here. Also crazy…the islands are largely composed of granite and over 50% of the land is nature preserve. Wow. Check Google Images for some of the most unreal pictures (1 2 3) I’ve seen in a while. Looks like it’s somewhat expensive…but there are always those little beach bungalow spots. By the way, it’s snowing here.

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Rolling Stone on Jay-Z!

I post about Jay too much. He’s the hip-hop generation’s Warren Buffet…so I feel I should pay attention. Jay-Z on the cover of Rolling Stone for an incredibly long and insightful article on the world of Jay-Z, Def Jam, hip-hop culture, and where things are headed. Just reading about his office-demeanor is interesting enough to me. I don’t know if he is the worlds best boss/mentor to his staff…but he is certainly shaping a new direction for the corporate music world. The whole write-up is very ‘day-in-the-life’ style in how it flows. Check out the actual magazine…the link below is just an excerpt, well worth the read. Top 5 in the Forbes, ya’ll see.

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Left-field. Check the link below for the ‘Deep Space’ images from the Hubble telescope. Not exactly sure how to make a whole post about this. But I spent a good 2 hours looking at these. They are just so incredible looking. And they got them in hi-res for free! Snatched. I was that 6 year old kid at the library looking at the Space Shuttle and space type books like crazy. Something about it. So intense to me. The whole idea of how far away from earth these objects are. Jeez. So nuts. So check the link and waste some time. Bar Divani…I’m on my way.

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BPM - Steve Aoki and Mark Hunter!

Come on homie we major. Steve Aoki is cold doing his thing. And so is Mark Hunter…that dude the Cobra Snake. Ssssss. BPM has ‘slammin’ features both of them with a thorough looking Steve aka Kid Millionaire all-up-on the cover. I love the whole vibe of what these guys are doing. Perfect mix of indie and business. Who could have imagined what Mark The Cobra Snake has turned into. The dude ‘makes’ a party…niche promotions at its finest. And Steve Aoki is DJing and doing promotions for damn near every party that matters these days. I love to see these things happen. But yeah, the magazine is a good read…shout to Jesse for the copy. So pick it up and support the ‘indie mafia’ movement as they call it. I don’t know the link to BPM’s site…so here is Steve’s MySpace page.

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Farm 21 Sale!!

I just posted about Farm 21 about a week or two ago. We usually stay away from posting about the same thing twice, but this is an exception. Farm21 is having a sale on a ton of stuff. Their lamps are marked down from $350 to $105 for example (for select pieces) resin lamps marked down, large and mini straw/moss/cork/white rose filled cubes are marked down, for example for the moss cube, from $800 to $280! Pretty good. You could really design an entire space around one of these cubes. I love them. Also, their lichen box-top lucite coffee table is marked down from $2,300 to $980! Pretty good if you are on the market for a beautiful piece. Anyways, what’s up to Sasha at Farm21. Thanks for the heads up on this. Get over there and by yourself that cork filled box you wanted for Christmas.

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Ikea: We won’t stop, because we can’t stop.

I thought I told you that we won’t stop. Take that, take that. Sorry…the little Diddy style intro was corny. Look…I love Ikea. I don’t care what any of the furniture snobs say. Because we all know they have some Ikea in their homes as well. So I was walking thru the corporate headquarters entry-way of one of my client’s today…and the November 14th issue of Business Week with the Ikea cover story caught my eye. Wow. What a wild look at the inside of Ikea and what makes them so unbelievable. They, along with Apple and others, epitomize what a ‘cult’ brand is. Did you know they only have 12 full-time designers? 80 freelancers…but still, 12 seems so small. Must be a wild to work there. Anyway…from their designs, their price points, their marketing, their manufacturing outsourcing, their intensely intricate demographic research, their insane profit margin, their growth-pattern etc…they are hands down one of the most fascinating brands to watch and learn from. Really…they are so inspiring. Side note, I was at the new Ikea in Bolingbrook this weekend…fun trip as always….but I wouldn’t recommend the $.99 breakfast. The article is split up on Business Week’s site, so just search ‘Ikea’.

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Forbes 150 Places to Live Rich

I’m loving this…This is a great resource right here, besides the fact that there is no text-only list, and you have to go through this stupid slideshow method to see each place. But anyways, Forbes has published a list of 150 places to live and get more bang for your buck. I live in a pretty small suburb outside Chicago right now, so it’s definitely affordable but nothing really special about the area. Reading this article and list got me interested in the idea of someday just up and leaving to a place like Oregon or North Dakota or something, living large and comfortably, but not paying even half of what it would cost in say NY or Chicago or LA or wherever. I’ll never move to NY anyways, it’s just way too much for my lifestyle and taste. I love the thought of a smaller, tightly-knit community where you could know most everyone and be very low-key. A few things on this list however do NOT excite me, like the description and picture they gave to Fayetteville, AR. The picture next to it’s description is a photo of Wal-Mart…Sorry, but if the best thing your town has going is Wal-Mart, your town is officially boring and probably has an abundance of overalls and a lack of teeth. Ben’s city is on here, Grand Rapids…and Bloomington, IL is on there which I visit quite often…but then Miami is on there too. So there are good reasons to live in different spots for all different financial and economical reasons, and this list just kind of outlines the details. Oregon and New Mexico look very interesting to me…hmm…The article talks about what they call a ‘Geographic Arbitrageur’ - someone who essentially does what the article talks about. Lives in a smaller city, but gets paid and lives as if they were in big city life. YA RLY.

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OMG NYC Real Estate!

Been a while since I did one of these. Let’s go. ONE—> This is it…seriously. El perfecto. I’m not even going to write any comments, its too good. But not for sale? TWO—> Yikes…$10.2M. Ridiculous. But it’s a beautiful space. The furniture is terrible, but look at the stairs! THREE—> Yet another ridiculously expensive space. But again, check the stairs! This one is nuts. 4000 sq ft just in terraces! Get it how you live I guess. That’s it for this post. Honestly…just check the first one, that’s what prompted this whole post. I used to hit the kitchen lights, cockroaches everywhere. Hit the kitchen lights, now its marble floors everywhere.