Las Vegas Birthday Slideshow (and book / sculpture)

Posted in LBM Books, Videos by Alec Soth on January 4, 2010

I turned 40 last Wednesday. My wife took me to Las Vegas. I made a slideshow.

To see this video a little bit larger, go to the LBM A/V page.

I also made a book and sculpture. See them here. (And buy them here).

I hope you enjoy my midlife crisis…

25 Responses

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  1. Ed Nixon said, on January 5, 2010 at 7:36 am

    Alec, I rejoice that you’re back blogging again. But I *implore* you, please stop with the Vimeo content or use your influence to get them to improve their technology so it doesn’t judder and jump in both the video and audio tracks. At one point I thought it was the HD-ness, but I’m not sure any more. And anyway, this show doesn’t seem to have any accessibility features that might allow me to try to turn HD off, if it’s on in the first place. My reference would be another service or (shudder) even Flash.


  2. LBM said, on January 5, 2010 at 8:33 am

    Are other people having this problem?

  3. Jens said, on January 5, 2010 at 9:17 am

    No problem here. Brilliant!

  4. Jon Pack said, on January 5, 2010 at 9:24 am

    No, worked fine for me. Good one.


  5. sjconnor said, on January 5, 2010 at 9:47 am

    Worked like a charm for me. And, it was a swell vacation slide show. Now, if only I had a spare four thousand dollars, I could buy the LBM Soup & Crackers Lunch Kit!

  6. Shannon Kolvitz said, on January 5, 2010 at 10:23 am

    Very nice video. I don’t know if I like this one more or the one where I thought you were naked talking to your dog. “Excuse me sir!!”

  7. Ed Nixon said, on January 5, 2010 at 10:38 am

    Any number of possible explanations from a) I’m outside the USA, b) connected wirelessly to cable modem, to… What I do know is that Vimeo is the only one of these services from which this problem arises and they have a Q&A in their FAQ about this problem which would indicate to me that it does happen in a significant number of cases. The solution, by the way, does not help me. But of course, do as you see fit.

  8. tread said, on January 5, 2010 at 11:20 am

    Brilliantly executed, here’s to Vegas, hookers, bowls and Bukowski. If I had a spare $4,100 I’m not sure if I’d buy the book, etc. or load up on all those $47 Special Rates. Toss up, art vs. er, well, art.

  9. Chris said, on January 5, 2010 at 11:56 am

    Ed, Vimeo does require a bit more horsepower behind your machine. On our old 12″ G4 Mac videos are unwatchable. You can try to buffer the entire video before you watch it, but if your processor or cache are too slow that won’t help.

    In my experience they’re the only online video hosting site that doesn’t trample all over the video, audio and audio quality and the end user rights.

    • Ed Nixon said, on January 5, 2010 at 1:59 pm

      I can certainly understand concerns around end user rights. Just for information, here are two links to Vimeo Help. The first outlines scenarios where playback problems may arise; I don’t know if this is an exhaustive list:

      The second link takes you to the page of guidelines for encoding videos for upload such that they’re likely to play cleanly

      I’ll assume Alec a ‘read the documentation’ kind of guy and has done all of this in his production (to the extent the instructions make sense and/or are feasible.)

      I’ll also assume that the reason I don’t see an HD / non-HD option button in the embedded viewer above is that this is not an HD clip. Don’t know why I assume that but… I’d expect to have problems with HD content on a Powerbook G4 even maxed out on RAM; it happens on YouTube too. But, on YouTube, turning off HD will always fix the problem and, frankly, I think HD in an embedded Flash player on a web page on a computer screen is pointless. (Maybe there’s a pun there; maybe not.)

      Thanks for the come back and attention. Please! Go back to regular programming.


  10. Chris said, on January 5, 2010 at 11:58 am

    Gah. Proofreading is useless before I hit the submit comment button.

  11. john gossage said, on January 5, 2010 at 12:43 pm


    Not much of a mid-life crisis if you are having this much fun.

    Anyway 40 is nothing.

  12. Gordon Stettinius said, on January 5, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    Hey there, Alec! Nice to see you back in the straddle! Great video. Makes me want to stop being a footage collector. It may be time to grow up and learn something.



  13. Jogn said, on January 5, 2010 at 3:00 pm

    I’m in the uk and Vimeo judders horribly for me. I have a medium speed connection, imac with plenty of RAM

  14. Cary said, on January 5, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    Enjoyed this a great deal, thanks for posting. Happy 40th!

  15. Mel Trittin said, on January 5, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    Absolutely the funniest piece of pathos I’ve seen. Once again you make me swoon. Would that I had the 4 grand, no gamble there. A belated Happy Birthday.

  16. wrobertangell said, on January 5, 2010 at 4:39 pm

    hi alec and all
    i liked the vid. very relaxing.
    went to del mar race track once, but not for such a noble cause.
    anyway, i think your new approach is good.

  17. hannah said, on January 6, 2010 at 8:00 pm

    makes me giddy. thank you!

  18. Whiskets said, on January 7, 2010 at 8:34 pm

    Welcome to the 40s…they’re fun. The 50s…we’ll see.

    PS: I think you could have a real horse tattooed with the Bukowski poems for around $4000.00.

  19. eric said, on January 8, 2010 at 10:53 am

    i hope you signed the $100 bill

  20. LBM said, on January 8, 2010 at 11:17 am

    His mom should have signed it.

  21. Sarah Hoskins said, on January 8, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    Happy 40th. Happy to sell you an original GSP from the Backside of horse racing for much less than 4,000…..

    Sarah Hoskins

  22. Sandy Dyas said, on January 8, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    Happy Birthday Alec. I have now seen 2 of your videos and I must say – You are good at this too! Simple humor and good work. Keep going! Maybe not too often to Las Vegas…

  23. Emmanuelel Hascoët said, on January 10, 2010 at 3:04 am

    Happy Birthday Alec! I like this video very much and the sculpture most of all!


  24. Andreas Schmidt said, on January 16, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Hi Alec,

    Officially out of print but still available on Amazon for a lot less than $ 4000…
    Vegas ain’t all that bad!

    Best wishes


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