Way too tired after a hectic day so I only have one thing to say. Head to www.controlarms.org and sign the petition. Or at least read and make up your mind.
That will be all.
Legend of Zorro
WARNING: DO NOT SEE THIS FILM. IT IS AWFUL.
I did enjoy mask of zorro. I really did. It certainly wasn't the smartest film I had ever seen, but it was enjoyable enough, with some sword fights, and some nice interaction between the characters (its always fun to have an old mentor section). But I had heard bad things about this film. Truth be told I would never have gone if I had not learnt that a bunch of my friends were, and, ever the sheep, I followed.
Still, I thought, as I sat dreading what was about to come, a bit of mindless fun might be enjoyable?
Sigh. Well the problem is is that when I say mindless I don't mean that at all. For action scenes to work well they actually have to be well directed, and inventively done to entertain. Not, as happened in this film, having practically every bad guy (well, henchman anyway) dispatched by either getting hit in the groin or the arse. For crying out loud. There was a surprising lack of sword fighting in the film; when that was happening it was vaguely enteraining. The plot was awful, with a touch of the Dan Brown to it, and the cliches of a sequel were there.
Worst of all was the child, who was given an irritating amount of screen time, essentially a modern day dennis the menace. Oh god, and the horse! The horse.... Sob. The funniest this film got was when it wasn't intending to (consider- the run away train about to crash into a train where, inexplicably, the governor had stopped to sign a treaty. There was a signal RIGHT in front of it, which could easily have been set to switch the tracks. This occured to ONLY the irritating child).
To be honest, if you are aged from 7-10 then you'll probably enjoy this film. Actually, if you were like some of the audience, who appeared to have been lobotomised to enjoy that tripe, you'll like it anyway. Anyone with any taste... steer clear.
EDIT::I'd like to point out that this one of the few films I ever looked at my watch during. Its 2 hours long... 2 hours too long really.
BBC licence fee
[for those of you who don't live in the UK, all people who own a television (well, to watch television on anyway) must play a flat "licence fee", which is used to pay for our public channels, specifically BBC]
I've been thinking about the licence fee recently. Thing is, is its illogical. I love the BBC. I really do, I think its a great institution that supports talent and innovation that might not be noticed otherwise, and I love being able to watch programs and films uninterrupted by commercials. Also, the news, while tending to be pro-government, is generally fairly unbiased, and more independent than most other channels news. I want the BBC to continue.
But I don't think the licence fee is the way to do it. Some have said that BBC should be scrambled except for those who pay their licence fee, so people have a choice to watch it or not. That way the BBC would have to compete with the other channels, and only those who wanted to watch it would have to pay. While I sympathise with this argument, I tend to disagree.
I believe that certain elements of culture should be subsidised. If you applied that previous argument to libraries, museums, art galleries and theatres most would shut down by tomorrow. Instead we support them by taxation because we feel their cultural worth is such that they should exist. I think we should apply the same thing to the BBC. It should be supported, but by taxation. Right now television owners are essentially paying a flat tax to support the BBC, and a flat tax for so many reasons that I hope I do not have to go into.
Either way though, we need to make a choice. We either need to decide that the BBC is a culutural boost, and should thus be subsidised, or it isn't, in which case it should be scrambled and have to make its own way. I don't think the current system is just.
How much DOES intention matter. I don't mean legally, I mean to YOU. In particular, what about infidelity? If say you go out on a night, looking to score, but fail spectacularly, is that better or worse than going out, getting drunk, and one thing leading t'other? I suppose one could argue that in the second case there has to have been some intention, but I think its probably entirely possible to get to someone house- especially if it was someone you knew quite well with only innocent intentions, then anger at your current partner, and booze, and a general crush you has always had, suddenly flaring all at once.
I realy don't know which is worse, because the person with all the nasty intentions hasn't really done all that much wrong, because he/she is incompetenet, while the second one has done quite a bit, but never meant it to happen.
I'd like to make it known at this point I have done NEITHER.
National Drinking while writing day
Some of you may have heard of National Novel Writing month
. For those of you who haven't, essentially during the month of november our budding authors are tasked to write a 100,000 word novel. There are various rules attached to that that sound too much like hard work for me. Still, a nice idea, and one I might do if I could be bothered.
However, I have just discovered the writing while drunk day
. Now this is technically meant to be on November 5th, but I'm going to be away november 5th, so I will do it another day. And to make it more exciting (or incomprehensible), I think its gonna be fiction. So watch this spot.
Off to a party tonight, I think it might technically be a haloween party, but who knows? Or, indeed, cares? The point is there will be alchohol, which I shall consume. And there will be much rejoicing!
101 things you may well have not known about me
Hmm. I'm gonna write this. Lets see how long it takes me.
1)my favourite beer is hoegaarden
2)I think no alchohol really goes with meals other than wine
3)I consider myself a film buff- though I am aware there are many films I have yet to see
4)I hate talking on the phone to anyone except very close friends/relations
5)I am in love
6)I have only ever dated two women
7)The first album I ever bought was the Offsprings "Americana"
8)The first album I ever GOT was a Bruce Springsteen tape. I have no idea where it is
9)I am awful at cutting my toenails, so much so that I have suffered ingrown toenails which were entirely my fault.
10)I know I SHOULD brush my teeth twice a day, but often don't bother at night time
11)I'm very lazy
12)I pronounce words completely incorrectly on occasion
13)I hate internet speak
14)I have not file shared music since I was about 16
15)I used to have a fear of butterflies.
16)I lost my virginity aged 17
17)I had my first real kiss in the same year
18)I am 5 foot 11. I wish I was 6 foot.
19)I have only one pair of shoes. Well two, but one of them doesn't fit me, and I haven't worn it for about a year....
20)I am very messy. But I enjoy it
21)I have been a vegetarian for 10 months. The thing I miss the most is ceaser salad.
22)I can't spell caeser.
23)I am currently boycotting coca cola. But not very effectively.
24)My uncle created MUD
25)My first ever machine that I played games on was an Atari ST
26)I still rate some of the games from that as my favourites ever
27)I am VERY opinionated (actually, you probably knew that)
28)I use sure anti-perspirant
29)Despite my generally self defacing manner, I occasionally look in the mirror and think I look good.
30)I like myself
31)I don't truly hate anyone, although there are several people I dislike
32)I am RUBBISH at DIY
33)I snack on bread
34)I have an apple sticker collection on my wall back home....
35)My favourite board game is monopoly
36)I enjoy asking inane questions of my friends
37)I think Freud was talking nonsense
38)I HATE swede
39)If I had to live anywhere else in the world it would be Canada
40)I would like to visit Japan one day
41)I sweat... a ludicrous amount
42)There are certain songs I wish everyone could hear
43)While I am an atheist, I call upon God in moments of weakness
44)I can touch type, although not conventionally.
45)I read 40 different webcomics. Thats only checking for daily updates
46)I do not believe that the pope is a force for good.
47)I detest the Farelley brothers films. And all Adam Sandler films. Except maybe the wedding singer
48)I kind of enjoy most romantic comedies
49)I am a sucker for a happy ending
50)If I won the lottery I would buy a reasonable sized house, a car, buy some luxuries, and invest at least half of the winnings.
51)When I get into it, I actually really enjoy cleaning
52)I think saying "42" when asked the meaning of life is irritating and tired (and also incorrect. Its the answer to the life, the universe, and everything, not the meaning of life. As to what the question is? Who knows?)
53)I eat INCREDIBLY fast
54)I steal chips like a crazy thing
55)My favourite dessert is chocolate denver, a family recipe. Closely followed by summer pudding
56)The main reason I don't get my hair cut is usually laziness. It is rarely a style choice. Also, I don't like talking to hairdressers
57)I detest public transport. Especially buses
58)Having said that, I'm vaguely fond of the london underground, despite a fear of it when younger.
59)I have a dislike for authority when it is not backed by what I perceive as intellect
60)I give great respect to those of large intellect (heh, that ryhmes)
61)I think some American lawmaking is freaking insane
62)I have a great respect for the set up of the American system, except for their method for choosing presidents
63)I think the set up of UK politics is awful
64)My favourite system to vote for people is Germany's.
65)I love the Eurovision song contest
66)I Like the idea of the EU, but find the way its carried out currenly unacceptable
67)I actually think capatilism is generally a good idea
68)I can't spell capitalism
69)I noticed the number for this question and smiled
70)While I am usually convinced I am right, I have been known to change my opinion
71)I enjoy discussing issues with intelligent people who completely disagree with me
72)I almost always play games on either normal or easy. Never hard
73) I have an IQ between 130-140, depending which internet test you wish to believe.
74)I don't believe anyone has free will.
75)I do NOT believe in fate. Those two things do not necessarily contradict each other.
76)I find it difficult to remain serious in conversation
77)I would love to have a book published
78)I have never finished a book I have started to write
79)I do not believe in the supernatural, the psychics, the mediums, etc, and dislike the obvious frauds amoungst them
80)I think most conspiracy theorists are idiots who are incapable of applying basic logic
81)This goes double for creationists who think there is scientific evidence for their beliefs
82)I like to make house of cards out of beer cans.
83)My favourite joke is the "fingers and the lips" joke.
84)I think most things are interesting if you know enough about them
85)I still get spots appear in various regions of my body
86)I wore braces for 3 years when I was younger
87)When younger I was heavily asthmatic. Now it barely ever bothers me
88)When younger I had a serious lisp. I had speech therapy when I was about 15 to remove most of the traces of it
89)I am willing to try a lot of things that people recommend me.
90)There are some things I never will. These include: bungee jumping, parachuting/gliding, boxing, eating brains/eyes (well, I'm a vegetarian anyway..), public nudity. Incidentally, not all of these HAVE been recommended to me.
91)I love swimming, but rarely do it.
92)I cannot recite pi beyond a couple of decimal points. I am not even remotely impressed by those who can.
93)I find it very difficult to stay angry for very long. I am aware people use this to their advantage.
94)In my opinion the funniest film ever is Airplane
95)I need a lot of sleep. I rarely get that
96)I think homeopathic medicine is a joke
97)If I am not very good at something I will usually deliberately avoid it
98)I actually enjoyed the first season of Big Brother
99)I don't believe in the concept of "true love" or a "soul mate"
100)I do believe in love.
101)I'm actually sometimes very optimistic.
How much is a human life worth? I mean, to you, and I'm talking about a random stranger here, one who is perfectly healthy, and full of potential, and not obviously evil anyway. What would you trade that for? Certainly a human life is worth another, and, in a detatched way, sacrificing one to save ten would be the correct thing to do. But what about other things?
What about all the books in the world? What if all literature, ever, was to be destroyed, unless you could kill just one person? Would it be easier if you only had to sign a piece of paper? Or press a button?
Are two adults worth a child? How much money WOULD it take you to kill someone? What if that money could be used to help other people- not directly saving their lives, perhaps, but providing homes? Would you kill someone to ensure all of humanity had shelter for the rest of their lives? What about 10 people?
What about pain? Kill someone to stop 20 from getting tortured? 10? 5? 1?
Also, growth. We talk a lot about growth, and how we have grown. I know I have, in many ways. Some claim that without growth is stagnation- some of the more intellectual science fiction novels I have read have made precisely that argument. Is this true? What if everyones happy? No-one is being born, but everyone is content? Society is stuck, but everyone feels good? How about individual growth? Surely there must come a point when you've grown enough? And surely not all growth can be good- surely some can have a negative effect, or are you suggesting you get better and better as you get older?
Just some thoughts.
WHAT THE FUCK?
LEAVE OUR FUCKING SCHOOLS ALONE TONY!
Seriousy though, this is SUCH a bad idea. I don't know why New Labour thinks that destroying the brilliant comprehensive system is a good idea. Yes, it certainly isn't perfect, but the whole point is its open for all. The point is that if your parents are busy, and don't take the time to get you into the perfect school, that it doesn't matter, because you can succeed in any school. And yes, that is not happening, but a "market" of schools is CERTAINLY not the way to improve. There are SO many worrying things about this idea
"The trusts are based on those that control academies, but in a marked departure from the academy scheme, the government appears keen to encourage charities, private schools, universities and groups of parents to run schools as opposed to attracting sponsorship from wealthy individuals.
Parents will also be given new channels to complain to the schools inspectorate, Ofsted, and to demand that a new school be formed or that a headteacher of an existing school be sacked if they think they are not up to scratch. Local parent advisers will also be employed to give parents advice on choosing their children's schools to ensure that middle class parents are not advantaged in "playing the system".
Parental choice will be backed by a new "market" in schools. Ms Kelly has previously indicated that failing schools will be closed if they do not improve after a year. A new provider will be found to run the school through a trust if no changes are made."shudder
parent power is SO overrated. Its petty politics at work, the worst kind, I have always found the idea of these idyllic communities of the past that som long for creepy- I prefer not to know my neighbours- why should I be friends who the only thing I have in common with is that they live on the same street?
"Trust schools will be able to set their own admissions, curriculum and teachers' pay and conditions, and will, controversially, be able to set these outside of national guidelines where they can prove that the measures will improve standards"
NO. Just no. Yes, the national curriculum IS flawed, but allowing individual schools to decide which bits they want is NOT the solution at all....
Sigh... and our alternative is David Cameroon.
Stupid stupid stupid
I suck without sleep. Unfortunately a lot of people's sympathy vanishes when they learn I didn't get to sleep til late cause Alice was staying. But, you know, I had to get up early to see her off! Then the train was late. The station near where I live is one of those tiny ones in which trains rarely stop, usually deserted. It seems trains are always late to arrive there, which is a unique talent; one can only guess that train drivers realise where they are headed and slow down deliberately.
Then on the bus there was some idiot with an ipod (I know a lot of my friends have these, so I can't go on too much, but I hate ipods. I'm probably just being a luddite. Actually, I KNOW I am being a luddite. Heh), who kept leaning on the damn "stop" button. The bus was too packed for me to alert him, and it took a surprising amount of time for anyone to get his attention.
Heh, to be honest any particular thing is bearable, its just I had 3 hours of sleep, and my brain essentially switches off. Why am I not in bed, you might ask? Thats a VERY good question.
You're all smart people, who read this, so I'm assuming you don't give intelligent design the time of day. This is one of the most amusing rebuttals
I have seen.
Ah, some people really amuse me during lectures. Today we had a problem class, where our lecture encouraged us to speak up with our ideas, and then mercilessly mocked us when we weren't correct (and being correct in this context means not only fully understanding the ideas, but being able to express them eloquently in mathematical language). He did to me, when to be honest I'm fairly sure that I could have given an accurate answer, but whatever.
So after many people being mocked, he asked us, what do we know about the neighbourhood of epsillon (kudos points for understanding what this means. In terms of a metric space this is- using the standard metric I believe, though it does not matter.). Some... idiot... decided to venture this answer "a neighbourhood is kind of like a baloon but you don't include the skin-the boundary- and instead just the air inside". Not only is this an awful metaphor, it was also quite obviously not what he was looking for (it's open is the correct answer...).
Still, another year of this eh? Its ok, but can be very hard- all my friends agree that we have no idea about whats going on in Advanced Group theory, but meh. I checked out a careers fair yesterday. Was quite tempted by the idea of millitary intelligence- theres lots of spaces for mathematical personnal, and one can argue that what they do makes a real difference. Not one for a pacifist, but I never have been, and good intelligence means less lives are lost in general. What does everyone reckon? Is it ethical to work in millitary intelligence? It would probably involve code breaking, I think, but I dunno, theres a fair few vacanies.
I'm tired, but briefly- i saw a guy with a pipe today! how awesome is that? People with pipes earn a lot of cool points. If you are going to destroy your lungs with horrible smoke, then you might as well do it with something that makes you look like an absolute legend. Am I right? Yes, of course I am. Of course really to go with the pipe you probably need a beard. Heres a list of famous pipe smokers
! I am so tired. SLEEP!
Badminton and badgers
I was going to blog about badminton but I am now certain I have in the past. And it wasn't interesting then. It probably talked about how unfit I am (and I am), and how badminton is practically the only sport I can do, and even during that I tend to almost die during it.
So badgers. I mention badgers only because of a piece of graffiti I noticed today by a young student saying "dave f8cks badgers and hedgehogs" (without the 8). I noticed it partially because it was so large, partially because I was tempted to (and did) add squirrells to it, and partly because I was kind of wondering why there was the need for an "and hedgehogs". Assuming that said graffiti artist is not actually telling the truth, in which case he should probably stop writing on the desk and start phoning the police, he must be trying to insult Dave. In which case, surely telling the world that he copulates with badgers is not enough. Apparently not. Apparently in said graffiti artists mind, this insult will only be of note if hedghogs are added to it. Admittedly hedgehogs are surely the more difficult creature to violate, although I must admit the prospect of trying it on with an adult badger is probably an uninviting one. Well, to be honest getting it on with any non human is a little uninviting to be honest, but badgers are fiery creatures.
'Course I always remember Badgers as the awesome creatures of war that they are in
Brian Jacques "Redwall" series, but they are probably not like that. In fact, I'm going to say definitely- no badger has ever wielded a wace. Or a mouse beat a cat in armed combat, for that matter, as happens in one memorable battle, although I seem to remember imaging all these creatures as being roughly in proportion to each other in my messed up child head. Douglas Adams despaired of that sort of thing, I seem to imagine, as does Terry Pratchett. Ferrets in waistcoats, or something similar.
I also said I would talk about Betelgeuse, and other than being one of the few stars that not only gets to be the home planet of a celebrated character of comic fiction and also the villian of an amusing Tim Burton film (ok, the ONLY one), I don't have that much to say about it. I'm not even sure what type of star it is, not that that would mean anything to anyone other than a physics student....
Well, that was fun. A big ol' can of worms I opened up there! Hmm, I hope to have discussions similar to that about other issues (hey, we could get our war on iraq on!) but not right now. Time for some... well inane posting.
So Toby requests, so I write about... gypsies, old people and Paul.
Hmm. Gypsies. Well first of all, probably shouldn't call them gypsies any more. Nowadays its better to be politically correct and call them by their proper name, thieving gypsies. I kid, I kid. To be honest, my opinion on travellers is a bit limited. I imagine they don't actually pay much tax, other than VAT, so they don't really contribute to society at all, which is a shame, but hey, to be honest, much as hard working people like to get angry at them, thats only because they wish they had thought of it first. I have never met a traveller, or lived near a travelling community, so I really could not even venture to summon up a stereotype. My thoughts when you mention the word "gyspy" tend to involve curses and magic, which makes it sound a lot more cool than living in a caravan probably is. Still, don't knock it til you've tried it, eh?
Old people. To be fairly honest, I'm almost certain I've spoken about them more, and if I used one of this hip cool category blogs I could probably even find the particular post where I did so. As it is I will point out that old people are cool because almost all of them have lived through war of some kind, and you've gotta give anyone like that a modicum of respect. Unless they were war profiteers, of course, in which case the only option left to you is to beat them with sticks.
Finally, Paul. I assume you mean my other flatmate here, the 6 foot 8 fellow who can crush me like a fly. Ok, I've just made him sound like the thing or something. I do not live with the thing, and never had. In fact my interaction with marvel, or indeed any kind of comic book character has been deeply limited until now. Which I suppose is a pity. Perhaps I should paint Paul orange while he sleeps, and then pretend he is the thing while he beats me into the ground. Unless I do the thing they do in that James Bond film and suffocate him with paint. i'm not entirely sure thats possible, to be fully honest, but I'm willing to try.
K, I'm done.
Arguments to eat meat
So , after prompting from copernicus now
I am going to try to present some arguments for eating meat. I will respond o them, of course, and will probably miss a few out. I'll do my best.
P1-humans should do what is in their nature to do
P2-humans naturally eat meat
Conclusion-Humans should eat meat.
Now P2 is clearly true- we have always eaten meat, and its certainly a natural thing to do. If we stop eating meat we have to balance our diets carefully to ensure we do not miss out on the many important things you get from meat. However, P1 is more contentious. I would have to disagree- I think civillised society is all about suppressing some of our natural instincts- ones for revenge, and indeed for rape, are quite natual, but we certainly shouldn't follow them. I don't think following our instincts is always right.
P1-Superior creatures have a right to use inferior ones as they wish
P2-Humans are superior to animals
Conclusion- we can eat animals as they are our inferior.
This is an argument made by many meat eaters. I have phrased it in an unfair way, possibly, although this is the essence of the argument. I would disagree with P1 entirely- just because something is our inferior does not mean that we can treat it as we like. It is surely the role of the strong to protect the weak, not prey on them. As to P2, this is contentious. I would argue that humans are superior to animals in that a human life is worth more than an animals (consider the rabbit and the child trapped in the road, and which one you would save), but I know some might disagree. Still, I believe P1 to be totally flawed.
P1-animals eat each other in the wild
P2-if animals do something to each other, we are perfectly justified to copy them
Conclusion- its ok to eat animals.
Actually theres a huge problem with this argument in that most of the animals we eat are actually herbivores anyway. But P2 is nonsense anyway. Animals kill because they have to to survive, and there is no such thing as a moral code for them. I think this argument can be dismissed out of hand.
P1-We raise most of the animals we eat ourselves
P2-These animals would not exist if we had not raised them
P3-Therefore their life is ours, to do with as we see fit
Conclusion-eating animals- at least those raised in captivity- is justified.
P1 and P2 are certainly true, although I am not quite sure of P3. Actually, P3 is more of a sub conclusion than a predicate, I should probably have rephrased that. However, the hidden assumption in this argument is that it is GOOD to raise these animals just to be eaten. Once we have done so,it may well be that their lives are ours (I would disagree, but never mind). However, I don't think breeding animals just to be eaten is truly a justifiable process. It is rather cruel and cynical of us to do so. Again, I must stress the point that if we were all to become vegetarians there would be far fewer animals on the planet. This is not necessarily a bad thing when the animals that exist are artificially supported.
Still, of all the arguments so far,I suspect this is the strongest.
P1-the meat industry is heavily subsidised, and supported by the weight of majority popular opinion
P2-our eating or not eating of meat will make no great difference to this
P3-We enjoy eating meat
Conclusion- We might as well eat meat, as our actions can have little or no effect.
Well, I've addressed this argument, and of all the meat eating arguments, I would be tempted to say this is the strongest. Still, this call to apathy is one I would never disagree, and I think evidence suggest it is correct.
Please feel free to come up with some more arguments- these are all off the top of my head, and presented with understandable bias.
A collection of wonderful thingsBad Science
Explaining why pretty much all media coverage of science is just plain awful...Overheard in New York
Some funny stuff herehttp://www.godhatesgod.com/
Letters to people. Well. Not really.....Feministing
A decent feminist blog... updates too fast for me to keep up with!Thinking Girl
Another feminist with a more reaonsable update rate. Some very thought provoking stuffPit of Pretension
The marvelous Venomous Bee and her posts about her somewhat disturbing obsession with Lord Nelson.Q Blog
My uncle's blogThe Language Guy
The Language Guy writes some great stuff- definitely worth a lookPharyungula
A science blog. I could NEVER have spelt that without it minimised in another window....The Psych Ward
Caitlin's blog. 'Tis good. Check it out.Ceremonial Soup
-A collection of scattered thoughts into one blogFull Metal Attourney
-awesome blog, I can't really characterise the posts easily. Check it out.Slumbering Lungfish
-Lore's, the creator Lore comics, blog.
Where I go for a bit of political commentary.Blood and Treasure
-Very ecletic commentary. Hmm, I can't spell.Comment is free
The guardian blogEchaston
-One of the biggest left wings blogs out there.The Curmudgeon
-British guy with some interesting, and sometimes amusing, commentary on UK politicsThe NEWS blog
-Steve Gillard of whatevever that spoof news show in the US is called.The Rude Pundit
-hes a pundit. And hes rudeThis Modern World
-Lot of interesting stuff hereXoverboard
-I really enjoy reading this blog.The Village Voice
-Good political commentary. I guest blog there occasionally.
Musings of Alice- the wonderful Alice's blog!Paul Blog 1-Daily Writings of a Future God
-updated more than the otherP blog 2- Hobbies and anecdotals
-not sure why Paul feels he needs two anyways....Freds blog-All you need is atheism and video games
-An occasionally updated blog by Fred! Amazing!Jeff's Blog
-Jeff is in Chicago now! Well near it anyways!Rich-Superiority Complex
-When he gets round to updating, very entertaining.Bens Blog- We all love excel saga
-You DO love excel saga, don't you?
Other webcomics I read. Most suffer from infrequent updates, some aren't that great. Most are worth a look though.Crap I drew on my Lunch Break
-amusing, random comicsEdible Dirt
-Sometimes very funny, sometimes inexplicable, sometimes disgustingErrant Story
-Fantasy story about a homicidal half elf's quest for ultimate power.Girl Genius
-Slow updates. Small archive. Still, enjoyable.Misfile
-A mess up turns a man into a girl, and sets another girl back three years in time.Midnight Macabre
-Spin off comic from something positive. Very rare updatesScandal Sheet
-A tabloid with a secret. Slow to update
New Gold Dreams
-Another comic by the author of Something Positive. Again lacks updatesThe last days of Foxhound
-MGS comic. Very funny. Slow to update8:1
-Weird, slow to update, story comic. Not funny, but then its not meant to be.Antihero for hire
-superhero comic. Enjoyable.Cup of Suffering
-Finally back after a long hiatus, but updates are very slow to comeSinfest
-Hard to describe.... Just check it out.
The best webcomics on the net. Some are on the webcomic list just because of infrequent updates.Achewood
Start at the party and never look backBob the Angry Flower
-one shot strips. Very funnyCollege Roomies from Hell
-Funny, and also rather moving in places, this ones plot keeps getting more and more complex.... Although updates have become more and more infrequentConcerned
-A half life 2 comic. Whats not to like? (Now finished)Dominic Deegan
-Fantasty webcomic. Very funny. Lots of puns....El Goonish Shive
-Far too complex to explain...Girly
-A comic about two lesbians and their rather madcap adventures.Megatokyo
-two gamers in Tokyo. With dating sim fun!8 Bit Theatre
-A sprite comic about the characters from FF1. Well. Sort of.Overcompensating
-Jeff Rowlands day to day life. Well. Sort of.PvP
-gaming comic. Except its not really about gaming at all.Penny Arcade
-The original gaming comic.Questionable Content
-Indie kids have funDinosaur comics
-SOO good. Same pictures every day, ever funny jokes.Rob and Elliot Comics
-Ludicrous antics of two flatmates. Very funny.Sluggy Freelance
-Absolutely awesomeIrregular webcomic
-Lego characters! Wooh!Something Positive
This is mostly for me, but I'm rearranging my links. You'll find out how in a moment. Actually, 'cause this post is at the bottom, you'll find out before you read this, so this is a pointless post. Damn
Weekend is here! Huzzah. Unfortunately I'm not going to York, so no Alice, I shall have to make do with the Amnesty social, which will be good. Well, if people turn up anyway.
Went to see Serenity yesterday. For those of you not in the know, Serenity is the film version of the very popular series Firefly which was axed after only 14 episodes. 'S about a crew of cowboys in space, essentially. I never watched Firefly, but I heard a lot of good things about Serenity, so I decided to check it out.
Very good. I don't feel I lost much from not watching the series- sure I am not fully up on the back story, but the film manages to impart enough critical information about the backstory without clobbering you over the head with it. Its a tight, fun adventure, with some nice touches (no sound in space!), and some very funny moments as well as some moving ones- some totally unexpected.
I would reccomend it to go see. However, I would
reccomend avoiding sitting next to the guy I was. He was clearly a fan of the series, as every single phrase and motion by the characters was rewarded with a little sniff of amusement or recognition, so much so that when some genuinely funny moments came I felt completely left out. He also occasionally added some commentary such as "oooh, nasty!" and "whoops" which added to the film immeasurably. He simmered down after a while, but it spoiled a fair amount of the film for me- the desire to reach across and rip out his throat was barely suppresible.
On the way home some drunks tried to get us to come over. When we ignored them they screamed abuse. Who'd have thought we wouldn't want to speak to such fine members of society? Its just crazy!
vegetarian arguments continues
Yeah, so I think I need another argument. While the arguments show (if true) that killing animals is wrong, it doesn't necessarily show that BUYING such products is wrong.
P1-either argument 1 or argument 2(or both) is accepted to be true
Sub conclusion- Therefore killing animals is either immoral or unethical
P2-the purchase of unethical or immoral items supports the industry that makes them
P3-We should not support immoral or unethical practices
Conclusion-We should not buy meat products.
Now I think P3 is pretty safe- I doubt many people will disagree. P1 is just the first two arguments reiterated and as of yet I have not been presented with a powerful argument to countet them yet.
What Rob argues against in my comments is essentially P2- the claim that our effect is so minimal that it has no true influence. I really disagree with that- every single bit of profit they do not get does hurt the meat industries, and as a large and growing group, I think vegetarians do have considerable buying power- most restaurants now provide at least one vegetarian alternative nowadays. I really do believe we have the power to effect change.
why I am a vegetarian
OK, just for fun, lets get our vegetarianism on!
I'm gonna argue the moral case first. P stands for predicate
P1-humans ARE higher forms of life than animals, but this does not mean that animals have no rights.
P2-It is unethical to kill an animal unecessarily
P3-Humans can live perfectly healthily without eating meat, as long as they are careful about their diet.
Conclusion- Humans should not kill animals for meat unless subsitutes are not readily available.
I think if you agree with the predicates of this argument then you HAVE to come up with the conclusion. And nowadays substitutes are very easily available. Also, I might add that because animals used for products such as milk are almost always slaughtered for food, really this leads to veganism. So yes, as a vegetarian, I AM morally compromised.
Now to defend my predicates. P1 is fairly straightforward, and not really essential to the argument. I think most of us would think of oursevles as superior to animals, but don't particularly want animals to suffer over much.
Now, P2. I think most people would agree with this. Necessary is of course a dagerous word- I would say any situation in which an animal inteferes severely with ones way of life- if animals were to attack your house you would be justified in killing them (if there was no other way to drive them off), or if you were, for example, trapped with only an animal to eat. For this reason I support animal research, although I want there to be a reduction in it.
We can disagree about what exactly necessity is, but if we agree on a particular definition in a particular situation, I think we can agree that killing that animal for a totally unecessary purpose is wrong.
So we get to P3. Is it necessary to eat meat to live? Evidence suggests no- while a vegetarian must be more careful, he/she can live quite heathily on said diet. I have done so for 8 months, and I know several people that have been a vegetarian for many years- one for 9.
So in other words we do not eat meat to live. We eat it because we enjoy it. I do not think that is a "necessary" use of an animals life, you may disagree, but ultimately, if you agree that it is unecessary, then you should probably be a vegetarian.
Next, the ethical case
P1-all humans deserve to be able to eat enough to live
P2-the earth's population is expanding rapidly, and soon will not be able to sustain itself.
P3-the amount of energy obtained from eating animals is deeply inefficient
Conclusion- we need to stop, or drastically reduce consumption of animal products.
P1 I think is a given, I believe this is a basic right of all humans
P2 is definitely true- simple extrapolation says our population is still rising, and isn't going to stop soon
P3-this is true. The ratio is ludicrous, something like 10:1 ratio on food in food out on cattle.
The conclusion you might disagree with. We can exercise population control, you claim. This could be true. Certainly with more education, and with some countries becoming more developed, families will become smaller. But right now the population is still expanding, and demand is outstripping supply. While we could just let them starve, the only real solution is to stop eating as much meat as we do. Incidentally, the majority of meat is consumed by westerners- we eat an insane amount.
Yeah, you might disagree with one argument's predicates. But I think a lot of you will not disagree with both.
Incidentally, the effects of us all going vegetarians WOULD mean that a lot of animals would be slaughtered- the only reason these animals can live is we support them, but if we want to stop this cycle we just need to stop breeding at some point, and kill and eat a large portion of the remaining animals.
Apparently I'm not allowed to tell an amusing anecdote about Alice's stay because it makes her look bad. Hmph, never mind. I guess I could tell an amusing anecdote that instead makes ME look bad but frankly I think ive had quite enough of those in my time.
So another day of actually working for a living. Well, kinda anyway, technically I'm not earning a living, but my life is subsidised on the understanding that I do this course, so its kind of working for a living. The elongated point is, I shouldn't have to go to university, especially not on ... well any day really. Frustratingly of the 15 lectures I have 9 of them are in the first days, and they are spread around so I have to get up early an unacceptable amount of days, something a student should not have to put up with.
I had been planning to cook an exciting new meal to add to my rather empty list of meals I can make today, but as there was no cooking oil left, I had pasta instead. Rather less exciting I admit, but you take what you can. Anyways, meh.
First of all, some links. If I haven't yet Copernicus Now
is very interesting, and he linked to a fascinating discussion about abortion
, whic is worth your time. I think such an argument is always worth following- it was by reading similar arguments that I became a vegetarian. It is ALWAYS worth challenging your views, especially about such contentious issues.
Today, I m going to talk about something far more basic. Chewing gum. OK, you like chewing gum. Thats cool- it keeps your breath fresh, and gives your mouth something to do, and probably tastes ok. But FOR GODS SAKE PUT IT IN THE GODDAMN BIN. OK, maybe you can't manage a bin- a tissue or some paper and then your pocket maybe? Yes, that is kind of weird IMAGINE WHAT IT FEELS LIKE WHEN YOU SIT IN IT, OR PUT YOUR HAND IN IT, YOU FILTHY FILTHY BASTARD.
And the same goes for ciggerette smokers. Sure, have your nasty habit. Breath it in my face even, and make me choke. But JUST PUT IT IN THE BIN WHEN YOU ARE FINISHED.
That will be all.
I think my body is trying to tell me something
So last night was the first Amnesty meeting, and then social. Well, to be honest it was the One World social and we just joined in, but meh, I don't particularly care. I had 6 pints. Maybe 7. Today, I was horribly hungover, and threw up multiple times?
WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? It's not like I was really drunk last night- while I was hardly sober, the fact that I can remember last night gives weight to my belief that I wasn't drunk. Most people are only sick after drinking INSANE amounts of alchohol. If I drink more than about 4 pints my stomach just goes
"Woah there buddy boy.... you do realise thats coming back out again, right? Probably with added bonuses?"
Stupid body. Still, I probably didn't help by going to my early lecture, meaning I had 4 hours of sleep to deal with the alchohol- its entirely possible when I woke up that I was still drunk. The lesson I should take from all this is to drink less, which is a fine and noble message, but I feel very rude not drinking in a pub (something I've noticed the female of the species do without qualms. Could be 'cause they're smarter than us) and I really hate getting non-alchoholic drinks in a pub. Not only are the prices total rip offs, it just feels... wrong. I suppose I could take longer drinking beer- I do remember lasting a pint 3 hours once. It was a dismal experience, in all honesty.
Anyways, Alice is coming today, so I may not blog this weekend. I know, I know, what will you do?
Last night, after some hard work, I switched on to channel 4's show "obscene machine". In this it showed some very, very weird, and quite disturbing sex toys. I won't go into details with most, but one deserves special mention. Real dolls.
I first came across real dolls in an article in FHM. A brief mention said that they were the ultimate sex toy for men, an almost perfect simulcrum of a women for only £4000. Thats right, £4000. Heres
a picture of one of them (don't worry, its work safe). Incidentally, the page
where that comes from is freakish. Seriously though, their faces are horrifying, and made more so as their creator calmly ripped off one of their faces to demonstrate that they you could change how they looked....
I can't imagine what it would be like to actually.... use on them. Deeply shameful, I suspect, although the man they interviewed had little shame about it. Then again, he was freaking insane. His ex wife, was, apparently, 18- he had been 50 at the time, and he had a real doll made THAT LOOKED LIKE HER. Whats more he would take photos of himself HAVING SEX WITH IT THEN PASTE HIS EX WIFE'S FACE ONTO THAT DOLL!
The factory warehouse was also a disturbing place. All the dolls are naked, and hung from the ceiling so it looks like a slaughterhouse.. I don't really want to show you an image, as it will probably give you nightmares.... Some people are so, so wrong.
And NOW I've got a cold
So I've been really busy. Seriously, this is deeply unusual for me, I know, but after having 5 lectures today, spaced cunningly to keep me on campus from 9-6, and then getting home and having to sort out a bunch of Amnesty stuff, I'm feeling a little put upon. Still, a free day tomorrow- well ok not free at all, as my lecturers have already set me a nice collection of work to do anyway. Oh and I've gotta plan my first meeting for Amnesty.
But sort of free, if you consider something that is not at all free to be free anyways.
But anyways, as I mention, I have suddenly developed a cold, my immune system failing me. Doubtless it is from one of those freshers that wander round campus with their horrible disgusting bodies, spitting and breathing on everything. I wouldn't mind too much if it hadn't set upon m this evening, when I still had- still have- things to do. Oh well, can't complain... well I can, I'm kind of proving that, but what the hey.
Urgh. Signing out for now, I think. Keep it real, true believers.
Ronnie Barker passes away
Grah..... The funnier half of the two ronnies
. Still, 76 is not a bad age to go.
how many condoms at once
Proving once and for all that the internet is the ultimate home of the inane
Ah, with the arrival of my parents today,I am finally unpacked. It feels good. Everything is in its place, every poster on the wall, every cd on the shelf. Now to get to the nice long process of making this place a tip.
Things are proceeding nicely, I have almost kind of got my shit together for the societies fair I have to do on monday, so thats awesome. Hopefully I shall tempt the foolish freshers into joining my society. Oh the poor misguided ones, they will learn the error of their ways, but far too late, after I hook them up to my energy machine using humans to run it. I got the idea off the Matrix, which is actually a TRUE STORY.
Did anyone ever use bendy rulers? You know, those 30 cm rubber rulers, which were designed so you could fit them in a pencil case that wasn't, in fact, 30 cm long? They were rubbish. Their one point, the fore mentioned one, was negated by the fact that if you left them bent for too long they would deform so they were shaped like that, so it was infernally difficult to draw a straight line with them, which is a shame as drawing a straight line was what I used rulers for. I was always proud of my ability to be messy even while using a ruler, often managing to cross through my title, or just at a complete angle. Genius, no?
I'm not sure why rulers bother to tell us that they are shatter resistant anymore. As far as I know, ALL rulers are now shatter resistant. I suppose the metal rulers aren't, but then if you manage to shatter a metal ruler you're probably doing it intentionally and should get what you deserve. Surely no-one buys a ruler these days on the claim that they are shatter resistant? I wouldn' know, having not needed a ruler for a long time (mathematicians have no need of presentation!)
Urgh.... work starts again on monday. Urgh.