Thursday, August 31, 2006

Chalk up one victory for the hedgehogs.

Okay, this is not a hedgehog, I know. It is a badger, or at least a cartoon badger. I just couldn't find a picture of a hedgehog that I liked.


After 5 years of campaigning, the British Hedgehog Preservation Society has convinced McDonald's corporation to redesign the plastic cups for their McFlurry deserts. Apparently the sweet, sticky residue in the cups is irresistible to the critters, who get their heads stuck in the cups and sometimes die. But I think the BPCS is missing the real point. Shouldn't they be doing something about British litterbugs? The redesign wouldn't really be all that necessary if the cups weren't tossed out of the windows of cars by heartless Britishers. But I suppose McDonald's makes a "sexier" target. And at least now the hedgehogs will be alive, if frustrated by their inability to access sweet treats on the roadsides of Great Britain.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Poetry is like wine.

Why? Because I don't think I would know good poetry or wine, but I sure as heck can spot bad poetry or wine.

I'm reading Ann Rice's "Memnoch the Devil", on my wife's recommendation. Despite the fact that I have never read any of her other vampire novels, it's okay, because the first chapter is basically an extended, "Previously, on The Adventures of The Vampire Lestat...". So far, the book is pretty good, but, for those of you who don't know, Ms. Rice usually peppers her books with poetry by her now late husband. Here's an example, from the beginning of the book.

Duet on Iberville Street

The man in black leather
Buying a rat to feed his python
Does not dwell on particulars.
Any rat will do.
While walking back from the pet store
I see a man in a hotel garage
Carving a swan in a block of ice
With a chain saw.

Stan Rice, 30 Jan 94

Deep, huh. Here's another, just for giggles. He's so defiant.

What God did not plan on

Sleep well,
Weep well,
Go to the deep well
As often as possible.
Bring back the water,
Jostling and gleaming.
God did not plan on consciousness
Developing so
Well. Well,
Tell Him our
Pail is full
And He can
Go to Hell.

Stan Rice, 24 June 93

Keep in mind that I'm sure Stan and Ann used what they considered his "best" poems. I'd hate to see what they considered his mediocre, or even bad poems. Some of my friends and I used to sit around (drinking beer) and reading poetry aloud from a probably self published book of poetry called "Heat Lightning", by I don't remember who. Bad bad stuff, but not as bad as Stan's stuff, I think. The HL author used the line "Cement Colored Eyes" way too often, and each poem was a bitter rant against a woman. We added punch to each poem by adding the ending line, "You Bitch!", which only made us laugh all the harder. I think that just like some people who make their own wine convince themselves that it is good, despite the fact that it tastes like paint, some people have been taught that pretense + poetry = good. I know that I couldn't write a poem to save my life, but at least I know that. Happy Labor Day

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Somebody really smart said this. Not me, somebody really smart.

The terrorists hate our freedom, so by eliminating the freedom, we can stop the terrorists from hating us.

Monday, August 21, 2006

The greatest poem ever written.

Everybody was kung-fu fighting
Those cats were fast as lightning
In fact it was a little bit frightning
But they fought with expert timing
They were funky China men from funky Chinatown
They were chopping them up and they were chopping them down
It's an ancient Chineese art and everybody knew their part
From a feint into a slip, and kicking from the hip
Everybody was kung-fu fighting
Those cats were fast as lightning
In fact it was a little bit frightning
But they fought with expert timing
There was funky Billy Chin and little Sammy Chung
He said here comes the big boss, lets get it on
We took a bow and made a stand, started swinging with the hand
The sudden motion made me skip now we're into a brand knew trip
Everybody was kung-fu fighting
Those cats were fast as lightning
In fact it was a little bit frightning
But they did it with expert timing
Make sure you have expert timing
Kung-fu fighting, had to be fast as lightning

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Slaves to technology

I've been seeing commercials for new movies being released for sale, with the ending "Now available on DVD and Blu-Ray". Almost without reservation, the movies advertised are generally recognized as pure 100%, high-test, CRAP. But, just think, now you can watch these horrible movies in ultra high definition! You can experience every second of these terrible testaments to hollywood's endless navel gazing in a format so clear that it will probably be burned into your retinas and might even alter your DNA permanently. Don't get me wrong, I like technology, but I think people today are truly addicted to it. Every new gadget that comes along, they must have as soon as it is released, and then they dump it just as soon as the next thing comes along. One other movie I saw advertised was "Final Destination 3", I think, which uses the new technology to let you "decide the outcome" of the film by giving you control over who lives and who dies at special points in the film. I wonder if you can choose "live" for every choice you are given, turning another "Dead Teenager" film into an After School Special about how not to get killed. I would hope so, but I doubt it. I would like to see the movie "Alien" remade with this technology, and whenever the Alien attacked, I would have it walk into a door jamb or slip on a bananna peel, allowing the crew to escape. But where's the fun in that?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

This just confuses things.

As long as we get to have a planet named Xena, I don't care how many there are or what they call them.

From New Scientist Magazine:

On 24 August, the International Astronomical Union will vote on a proposed new definition of the term "planet"

Here are the new categories they are proposing:

Planet: A round thing orbiting a star. More precisely, according to the draft definition: “A planet is a celestial body that (a) has sufficient mass for its self-gravity to overcome rigid body forces so that it assumes a hydrostatic equilibrium (nearly round) shape, and (b) is in orbit around a star, and is neither a star nor a satellite of a planet.”

Pluton: A planet orbiting beyond Neptune, taking more than 200 Earth years to circle the Sun. So far, it would include Pluto; Pluto's former moon, Charon; and
"Xena" (2003 UB313).

Satellite: Anything orbiting a planet, as long as the mutual centre of gravity does not fall outside the planet. Includes several bodies much larger than many planets, such as Jupiter's moon Ganymede (diameter: 5262 kilometres).

Small solar system body: Anything orbiting the Sun that's not a planet or a satellite. Most asteroids and comets would be SSSBs. Currently called minor planets.

Unofficial categories of planet:
Dwarf planet: A planet smaller than Mercury (diameter: 4879 kilometres), which is the smallest uncontested planet. Would include the former asteroid Ceres; Pluto; Charon; and Xena.

Giant planet: Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune.

Classical planet: The four giant planets plus the familiar four rocky, terrestrial planets: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

NASA caught red handed! Proof that the moon landings were faked!

Well, here it is. I found it, not even hidden well, on NASA's own website. Proof positive that the moon landings were faked. Obviously, this is an undoctored, unfiltered photo before it was run through the process that makes it look like they are actually on the moon.

Oh, I can't go on with this. It is no such thing. It's just a photo of one of the Apollo 17 astronauts testing a soil collection rig, to see if it might be useful once they got to the moon.

But it's just the kind of thing I would expect from the morons who think we never went to the moon. We did. Case Closed. It would have actually been far more expensive and technologically challenging to fake a moon landing than to just go there, which is what we did. But the conspiracy nuts will go on thinking whatever nonsense they want to. Because not thinking is easier than thinking, any day. Sigh.

Monday, August 14, 2006

If you can't say something nice, say something surreal.

When I sit back and look at the world today,
Sometimes I feel that I just have to say,

There's no earthly way of knowing
Which direction we are going.
There's no knowing where we're rowing
Or which way the river's flowing.
Is it raining?
Is it snowing?
Is a hurricane a blowing?
Not a speck of light is showing
so the danger must be growing.
Are the fires of hell a glowing?
Is the grisly reaper mowing?
The danger must be growing
For the rowers keep on rowing.
And they're certainly not showing
any signs that they are slowing!

Friday, August 11, 2006

You might have missed this.

Yesterday was proclaimed "Baby, the Corpse Flower" Bloom Day in Brooklyn, USA

I've seen, and smelled the Amorphophallus Titanum in Atlanta. It certainly is impressively huge, and smelly, but I've got to think that the President of Brooklyn has a lot of spare time on his hands. Still, it's a very nice looking document.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Billions of years of evolution has brought us to this.

I actually kind of enjoy this clock, and its accompanying brain melting tune. But I also know that it would be extremely useful in extracting information from prisoners. 3 or 4 hours of listening to this should make you willing to sell your children to the dog food factory.

You. Have. Been. Warned.


Thursday, August 03, 2006

When God gives you Global Warming, make Global Warming Ade!

Those crafty Greenlanders, (who have the best flag, pictured at left) have started making Greenland Brand Beer, brewed with water from their melting ice cap. For the Danish market only, so far, but I imagine that as the ice cap begins to melt faster and faster, they will have to start increasing their market.

Mmmmm..... You can really taste the polar bear.
(Yes, there are polar bears in Greenland, I just checked. I'm gonna miss those guys.)

Full article here: