Friday, November 30, 2007

Another sighting

You remember I saw the Grim Reaper back in May? Well I've had another encounter, in the main concourse of the Royal Infirmary. This time she was an old lady in a long black flowing velvet cloak. It was definitely an omen this time. Later that afternoon, my wife rang me at work to tell me our neighbour's daughter had died.
It all feels a bit weird.

Hold your nose and down it goes

A friend of mine has come down with the sniffles, so I took her up something to help. She's just rung to say it's the best thing ever for a sore throat. So what did I give her? Just what I always take when my throat is sore - Co-op Bronchial Mixture!
This concoction, only available from Scotmid, contains capsicum, liquorice, peppermint, anise, treacle and caramel, and is one of the vilest tasting substances you'll ever encounter. You dilute 5ml of it in 20ml of boiling water, and drink it. It's an acquired taste, but by cracky it works on your tubes.
To my knowledge, it has never been advertised, but it beats all your Lem-sips, Night-Nurses and Strepsils into a cocked hat.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

I bet Christian Voice are having wet dreams right now about the situation in Sudan, where a teacher is being prosecuted for blasphemy. If only it could be taken as seriously in Britain as it is there, and the people behind Jerry Springer - the opera could be put behind bars for their crimes against religion.
Never allow any of these fuckwits near any sort of temporal power. The kind of society they want to usher in would make Hell seem like an improvement.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Break through

I never thought I'd be glad to see adverts on television. But this week, they started appearing on Anime Central. Now, for two months I've been watching that channel, and there hasn't been a whiff of advertising. There were breaks where ads should have appeared, but they were filled by trailers for the shows, and though the music is amazing, it could start to get wearing. No advertising, of course means no revenue, and I was beginning to wonder if the channel would fold eventually, probably in the middle of a run of an anime I was following.
But no, the advertisers have at last cottoned on to the fact that there are people like me willing to invest time in following a fifty-episode series. Maybe they read my previous post on the subject? So now the breaks are filled with ads. Anime Central is making money, and I get to see Bleach and Hack/Sign all the way through.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Rattlin' Sabres

While flicking channels, I came upon The O'Reilley Factor on Fox, where he was chatting with some writer about the best way to bomb Iran. They agreed that if Iran believes the USA has a batshit crazy cowboy for a president, (now what would give them that idea?) then the best thing to do would be to play on that image, and get them to believe that the Americans really would carry out a first strike against Iran. To be fair and balanced, Bill O'Reilley did say that diplomacy should come first, but the fact that they're discussing the possibility of attack without a sense of horror is disturbing.

Monday, November 19, 2007

It's no longer for you-hoo.

At last the calls have stopped. We finally signed up to BT's telephone preference service just over a month ago, and the silence is wonderful. You know the calls I mean, the ones asking you if you want double glazing/ a loan/ a conservatory/ a loan/ a mobile phone/ another bloody loan... Now they've ceased. No longer will my teatimes be interrupted by someone wanting to speak to the houseowner.
If you're with BT and still bothered by marketing calls, I can't recommend this enough. And it's free. All it takes is one phone call (to an automated call process of course, but it's worth the time) and you can be sure that when the phone rings, it'll be someone you want to speak to.
What happens when everybody has signed up? what will the telemarketers do then? Who cares!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Digging for victory

The countdown to the invasion of Iran continues. According to this article the US military are doing their utmost to gather every crumb of evidence against Iran to support the case for intervention. They're interrogating Iraqi detainees, with the emphasis on the mantra : "Got to find a link with Iran, got to find a link with Iran." as one official put it.
And all the while, Ares is polishing his red sword.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Warhammer 40K (-- 37,990)

Big stushie just now about Pat Robertson endorsing Rudy Giuliani for the republican nomination. Giuliani's stand on some social issues is anathema to the god squad, but it looks like he's the only candidate who has a chance of winning against Hillary Clinton. So what is a god-lovin' fundy to do? Back a guy who shares your belief system, but doesn't have a hope in hell of winning, or break bread with the antichrist? It looks like Pat is being pragmatic.
Of course, all this conniving and kingmaking will amount to nought if Queen Hillary wins. They'll have to wait at least eight years before getting another shot, if not longer.
But this christianist crapshoot is a sideshow. It's taken people's attention away from where the real action is taking place. Who needs the presidency, when you can have the military? Proselytisation is in full force in the services. It's getting to the stage where promotion depends, not on leadership ability, or strategic expertese, but on how loudly you can pray. It's getting more and more like Warhammer 40,000 every day. They'll be bringing on the inquisitors and the purity seals next.
So what happens when a crusader army decides that the government is not godly enough?

Water torture

Americans have a new Attorney General, Michael Mukasey, who has refused to class waterboarding as torture. Waterboarding is where you pour water on somebody's face, causing them to gag. (See Wikipedia link for details). It's torture. Plain and simple. But if an Attorney General confirms it, then he is legally bound to pursue and prosecute those who have made it military policy - in other words, the executive. Of course, they aren't going to appoint anyone who will confirm it, because as long as nobody says it's illegal, it's legal.
It's wrong. It's unjustifiable. It's evil. But it's legal. And until there's an Attorney general with the cojones to state that it's torture, it'll continue.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

I recently discovered webcomics. I've been indulging in a bit of archive binging - that's where you start at the very first comic of a series, and work your way through five years worth of graphic art. Eventually you arrive at the present day, and the stories slow to a crawl, because they're being written and drawn now - literally now. As you are reading this, webcomics are being constructed daily, or biweekly, or weekly, and once you have read the archive, you must wait.
The first webcomic I read through was The Wotch, a magical fantasy set in and around a high school in Tandy Gardens. It was inspired by the even more wacky El Goonish Shive, where I'm currently in 2006 at the moment.
But my favourite, so far, is Dominic Deegan : Oracle for Hire, which is an epic fantasy where the title character is a grumpy seer. Now it's unusual for seers to get top billing in fantasy, usually they're a supporting character who gives the hero and team timely advice, or warning. And if they're not elven queens, then they're wizened old curmudgeons with straggly beards. Now Dominic Deegan may be a curmudgeon, but he's young and clean shaven and very much in control.
It's difficult to write about webcomics without giving away the plot, so why not check them out for yourselves, and get back to me?

Monday, November 05, 2007

Happy Birthday!

It's my sister's birthday on the sixth, but by the time she reads this it'll be her birthday, so:
Happy Birthday dear!


Today I saw inscribed upon the window of my local bus shelter these words:
Now recently I have come across a few neologisms using the word blog, such as blogswarm and blogosphere, but this surely demands a photo of a cute kitten with,
written underneath it.
The question is, what exactly is a blog surj (or surge) and how does it differ from a blog swarm?