Monday, January 30, 2006

ok, that's brilliant

I am doing some blog browsing at the moment (got to love that "next blog" button!), and of course have come across some advertising blogs- places that exist only to generate links. This one is hilarious though. I just love it's unnatural segues.

"I do not know where to go from here. Yes, they say that breaking up is hard to do. But what do you do when you know you will crush the other persons heart? Then what? How do you break it to them softly? I am not really sure how to do it, let alone do it smoothe. I wish there was some kind of handbook out there that I could refer to or something. Not sure. But I do know this, I need to figure out something fast, especially before I go on searhc for more info about lotterywest virginia powerball. Know what I mean?"

a post about nothing in particular

FHM is always an entertaining magazine. It claims it's audience is from the 20-28 range, while I suspect it is more from the 14-17 and convict range. It really is quite dull- ranging from a handful of, while arousing pictures of women, are more than attainable in freer formats, and articles on "britains 'ardest men." I know I certainly tired of it within a year or so of reading.

Although I suppose I am being optimistic. While the idea of reading a magazine entitled "nuts" makes me slightly naseous, it does seem to be common in waiting lounges everywhere, while more intelligent reading makes itself scarce... Indeed, the fact that our universities friday club evening was called "horny" until last year makes me suspect that even a reasonable proportion of supposedly one of the best universities in the country are down in the gutter. Not that I'm claiming that I am the guardian of all that is pure... I just feel we can treat this stuff with a little more class.

Having said that, I am the person who, when my mother mentioned the shop " big heffers" assumed it was a shop for large women (she meant the big "heffers". The book shop). In my defence, it's only because that seems to be the trend for shops nowadays, to have trendy, cutting edge names, and the like.

On that note, has anyone seen that godamn jaguar argument where they keep saying "gorgeous makes me feel good." "Gorgeous loves to drive cars." "Gorgeous is really gorgeous." "Gorgeous makes you fat." "a recent survey showed that gorgeous leads to cancer". This continues along those lines (possibly not exactly as I said it...) until finally saying jaguar. Depressingly it has imprinted the word jaguar in my mind, which means I will have to do my best never to buy a jaguar car in the future. Although admittedly if I tried to find a car who's company hadn't annoyed me through adverts I might come into some difficulty.

Anyway, I have to tidy my room now, the dreaded post exam event, made slightly urgent by the fact that my lovely girlfriend will be arriving this evening, and
I doubt she wants to live in the quite frankly repulsive squalor I find myself inhabiting.

Stay tuned, true believers.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

A rather amusing point

Censorship? Or just bad spelling?

(via blood and treasure, which is an excellent blog by the way)

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Exams are over!

No more.... until May. I also get a nice week break between semesters, which is pleasent. I intend to be verrrry productive. Ha. Ha. Ha.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

there are no limits

A while back (and I have a sneaking suspicion that I blogged about this before, but it bears repeating), I was browsing a forum I had joined. In it there was an argument about the best super hero. During this "debate" one member mentioned "well the punisher could kill all the other super heroes anyway." I was struck by the certainty of his comment, and posted, wondering how he could be so certain of that. It's hardly like, I jokingly commented, there is a comic in which he fights every single super hero.

There is. The punisher kills the marvel universe. It is even worthy of it's own wikipedia entry, apparently. Now, for all I know, it's a perfectly good comic, well drawn and well written, but seriously.... is there ANY idea they haven't done? The most disturbing thing about it perhaps is the way everyone takes it so utterly seriously. Oh well, each to their own I guess. Their crazy, crazy own.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

good for them

Law students left in protest as the Attourney general tried to justify his nonsense claims.

Via Ben (sorry Ben, forgot to credit you....)

don't need a degree

Something we all do, to greater or lesser extents, is assume we are the rule, not the exception. An example of this is when you have drunk an equal quantity of alchohol to someone and they are swaying and you are fine. You say "how are you drunk,I'm not drunk!" Or, worse yet, you see someone get hurt and then they scream with pain and you say "come on, that doesn't hurt at all! I've had that happen to me 5 times and I'm fine." The answer to both of these, is, of course, good for you, but this person is not you. They have a different body, physically and mentally, and of course are going to react differently. Applying your own standards to judge their reactions is unfair.

The most frustrating example of this kind of logic is one I have heard in the media a few times, from business men who have made it with only a handful of GCSEs (an exam you sit at age 16 in the UK). Their logic- THEY made it big without any kind of education. Therefore, you do not made education to make it big. This is true. With enough luck and business acumen you can certainly get to where you're going without dallying in the education system for very wrong. The mistake they make is to claim degrees are a waste of time. This is, of course, obviously ridiculous. Clearly the average early school leaver does not go on to become a succesful business person. Generally, they're either unemployed or working minimum wage. The thing is, if you DO leave school early, to start in the world of business, if everything falls through, as will happen in the majority of cases, then you have nothing to fall back on. Most degrees will automatically qualify you for jobs that others will have severe difficulty getting. So even if you can't get that dream job you hoped for, you can usually fall back on something that someone without a degree could never get. This is not of course generally true, and depends on your degree, but ultimately a more educated individual will normally find it easier to interact and manipulate the system to their benefit.

That was the common sense argument- theres a simpler argument in that statistics show that on average people with degrees earn far more than those who don't.

The fact is that in the long run, luck will probably balance out. If you live long enough, and do enough, you should have a fairly even balance of good and bad breaks. The difference is what you make of them. The reason why good players of games which involve luck (poker, a lot of board games, many many things I can't think of) win more is because they do their best with a bad hand, and utilise a good hand to the maximum. They reduce the randomness involved by applying skill. It's the same in life- you can reduce the randomness in your life by solid achievements, like a degree, or any form of qualification. I'm not saying a degree is the only way to go- it certainly isn't, but it's simply wrong to claim that a degree is pointless, and I wish people would stop doing that.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Missing out

It's quite easy to miss out on trends on the internet. For example, there is a meme (if you do not know what a meme is, this might be very hard to follow...) across livejournal to draw batgirl.

While avoiding this video I stumbled a cross a video called hyakugojyuuichi forever. It was pretty inexplicable, until I figured out it was a tribute (maybe) tohyakugojyuuichi, ANOTHER trend in the form of videos, similar to numa numa or all your base. Anyway I really need to get back to work....

ultimate showdown

"Batman was injured and trying to get steady when abraham lincoln came back with a machete"

Saturday, January 21, 2006


I have never wet shaved in my life. I have always used an electic shaver, which does a perfectly good job. Although, I have to wonder, why is technology in shavers so slow? For a long time I only had a two bladey thingy shaver, until a few years back, they released a three bladey thing. Now how long exactly did it take them to think of that one? It seems fairly obvious to me, and surely not too hard to come up with. After all there really is not that much room for innovation in the shaving industry- you can tell they are getting pretty desperate, with the new shaver being an electric one which also has a little pouch of nivea skin cream you can use to help you shave. Ooh, how exciting! I'm sure that'll have people shopping in their droves. Still, ultimately you are getting a new line of customers every year as children move from the magical realm of childhood into the hell that is puberty.

I kind of like the idea of incompetent design- we were all created, but by someone who did not know what he was doing so made puberty a ridiculous time. It is a real shame that the time one wants to impress girls is exacttly the same time one is coated in pimples and has a squeaky voice. Chuck in puppy fat in there, and you've got a rejection bound teen in production. Good stuf.

Friday, January 20, 2006


Ah drugs, everyone loves them. Apparently, cannabis is remaining at class C in the UK. Which means theres less penalty for consuming it, essentially, than a class b drug. This has caused a lot of hassle, especially with evidence that it might cause psychosis in some cases.

the government is now about to launch an education campaign to try and put young people off doing it. This is, of course, laughable. "Susceptible individuals who avoided cannabis had a 25 per cent chance of developing psychosis. Susceptible individuals who smoked it had a 50 per cent risk. And the more cannabis they smoked, and the earlier they smoked it, the worse the outcome." OK. "About 1% of the population experience at least one acute episode of schizophrenia at some time during their lives". OK, so basically it increases your chances of getting shizophrenia from 1%.... to 2%. Wow. Now, thats unscientific, but considering that the link is not completely certain anyway.

"Almost all excessive drinkers will develop the first stage of alcoholic liver disease fatty liver. This is a ‘side-effect’ of the liver breaking down alcohol into carbon dioxide and water. Fatty liver disappears when patients stop drinking excessively. If patients continue drinking excessively then a proportion (around 20-30%) will develop the next stage of alcoholic liver disease - alcoholic hepatitis. In this condition, the liver becomes inflamed and in its extreme form, patients can die of liver failure.

An even smaller proportion of patients (around 10%) will develop a permanently scarred and damaged liver (cirrhosis), if they continue to drink excessively"

Right. And we ban cannabis because......

Hey, I'm not saying that we should necessarily legalise it, but reclassifying it to B would have been clearly insane. Cannabis is not a dangerous drug, and practically everyone knows someone who has taken it, or has taken it themselves. It simply is not a big deal, and it is weird that certain people still treat it as such.

That is scary

Seriously scary.

Via full metal attourney.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

I am surrounded by empty bottles.

Money can't buy you happiness, apparently. Now, I'm not sure. I'm pretty sure the unemployed, and homeless, and the hungry might argue. OK, they might be happy with starving to death (the last group that is), but I suspect they'd be happier... not starving to death. Unless they were suicidal and also masochistic. And also stupid. There might come a point where money can't buy you much more happiness- after a few hundred million I suspect any more is just vaguely pleasing. I imagine one could construct a graph of happiness against money, if one was so inclined. I am not.

In honour of the Queen's 80th birthday, the royal mint have recently created some new £5 coins, which every household in the UK has the opportunity to purchase. I wonder if they sent a letter to the Queen too, or she get's the £5 coin as a present. Must be tricky buying for the Queen- what do you get the woman who has everything? Including a palace of her very own. I do rather like 10 downing street, becuase it is a realistic form of leadership. A leader doesn't need a ridiculous palace- it's not like you're going to use that much space really.

I have no idea of what powers the new leader has over 10 downing street. I assume they can redecorate? Oddly enough the question never was mentioned in my A level politics course, a surprising omission really. Can he get an extension? You know, for the exercise bike? Or a games room? Do the cabinet ever play poker? Questions I may never know the answer to...

Monday, January 16, 2006

Nothing but exams

Two exams in one day, it's like having two chocolate bars. In that..... Ok I didn't think that one through.

Anyways, I was thinking about die another day's invisible car. Of all the things to make invisible, a car is a pretty pointless one. To get from anywhere to anywhere in a car you have to travel by road, and if you try that while invisible you WILL die. I suppose you could go cross country, but the car in the film wasn't even 4 wheel drive... The only point of invisibility would be staking out houses. Which sounds like a lot of money for something that will undoubtedly get destroyed. Seriously, why does Bond keep getting his car back? He inevitably destroys the damn thing. Also, in one questionable scene in Goldeneye, he murders police men by crushing them with tanks. The man should be imprisoned....

While obviously you cannot take these kind of films very seriously, there seems to be a truism that in an action film, generally they tend to kill more people than they are saving- see Speed, Con Air, the Rock, and so many more. There's a very bizzare moral code to them, essentially that characters lives who you see are more important than those off screen- in the cars that get crushed or exploded. This is probably human nature, but it is a rather worrying aspect.

Speed was such a ludicrous film. I know everyone has pointed this out, but seriously... the bridge jump? Could they not at least have had a RAMP? Nope, we are meant to except that a bus would not fall... at all while in the air. Interesting. Amusingly, if you watch the shot, it jumps disconcertingly so, while for a moment the bus's back lag, it then shoots back up again. I don't know why the director expected people to accept that bit.

Oh well, it's probably asking too much to have a sensible action movie, although I would call Die Hard a reasonably sensible film actually.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Who should we invade next?

There are some really stupid people out there. See some American ones inthis video. Notice the placement of Iran....

Friday, January 13, 2006

more revision.


Revision is getting me down, I have to admit. My lecturer for one course seems to take pleasure in putting inexplicable answers to the exam papers up, which makes my job rather hard. Added to the fact that he also takes delight in asking questions that you would need to be... well smarter than me anyhow... to come up with an answer to in the exam.... It can be a little frustrating.

Still, only two weeks left. Exactly now, as my final exam is in two fridays time. Which will be fun. It's not as if it's the harshest schedule in the world- 4/5 hours or so a day revising, but it does include weekends, and it is also rather wearing, and very difficult to concentrate on. Would I prefer to be doing 9 to 5 at this point? Probably not, but to be honest it's getting to the point that I am beginning to like the idea. At least you get the weekend off.

As a result my life has failed to be full of frolics and adventure, disappointingly, but no doubt after this exam period I will go back to my normal existence of baiting alligators and fighting dark lords hell bent on destroying the earth.

There does seem to be a surprising amount of evil genii who want to destroy the earth. Often their reasons for this are rather weak, from those who will be all powerful (over what?) to those who are angry at the world. Taking over the world, I get. Destroying the world? It's just no fun.

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Is a funny thing, as I have now failed to buy noodles while at the shops twice at a row, despite my main purpose this time being that.... Never mind.

Noodle is one of those intrinsicly funny words. You cannot use the word noodle in a speech and have it be a serious one. For example, if you were speaking at a funeral, and mentioned that your lover used to eat noodles, then burst into tears, it's entirely possible that those gathered might well smile. Well, maybe not, but I certianly would. On the inside anyway. I have been known to laugh inappropriately in the past, although certainly not at funerals. Give me time though. It's actually worrying, the thought that the only way I will be able to avoid attending many many funerals during my life is by being directly involved in one myself. Or cutting myself off entirely from friends and family I suppose, an option I have yet to explore.

I have never used the spell checking feature in blogger. Or, indeed, copy and pasted into word and done it there. I'm not sure why. I guess it's because I'm lazy, but also partially because I like my writing to be natural and not corrected. I do this on msn- I will interrupt myself mid typing to go on another tangent. This is just my own little eccentricity, I'm not sure if anyone else tries to make it sound like theyre talking on msn. Do you?

I also rarely, if ever, text speak in texts. I do not punctuate other than with full stops, but I rarely ever abbreviate. If I need to lose space from a text I go through deleting spaces after full stops, or, in some cases, rewriting a sentence. Anyone else do that?

edible dirt

Is sometimes horrible, but today, is hilarious. Well, at least to me anyway.

you gov

I have been visiting you gov for a while now. Basically, you do surverys, and they give you money. However, you are not allowed to collect until you get £50. I started about a month ago, with a starting balance of 1 pound. Since then? I have £1.50. Not exactly a big money venture, but every little helps I guess.

Free money is always difficult to get hold of, as it seems most people are very unwilling to give it to me, unfortunately. I imagine if you're famous it's better. At least, thats what I gather from films and stuff, where celebrities are given free meals and goodies of various sorts. But then people take photos of them and put them in magaizines saying such things as "look, they look a bit bad here!" Or, "look, they are kissing their lover!". When my sister used to get Heat, and I would, out of unbearable curiosity, browse it's pages, a remarkable amount of pages seemed to be dedicated to long distance shots of couples, utterly legitimate couples, having coffee, and possibly kissing. I mean, that's not interesting when it's people I actually know! It does worry me that Heat and the Sun sell so well....

According to the recent Richard Dawkins documentary/rant about religon, the root of all evil, 43% of Americans believe the world is 10,000 years old. REALLY? That beggars belief, it really does, surely America, the richest nation in the world, has an education system decent enough to show this just isn't true. I mean for crying out loud, the Egyptian nation dates back that far! I'm pretty sure we have written documents from before that! That's madness, that really is. I don't really have anything witty to say about that, other than that is a kind of frightening ignorance.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006


I remember having it explained to me when I was younger how one gets from hamlet to village to town to city in terms of size, and was confused then. So... off to google. I considered making you all do it, but I'm not sure I have much more to say on this subject, and besides, I can be a force for good too!

"According to the description, the most significant difference between the Hamlet and the Village is that the Hamlet does not provide for voter-authorized taxes or fees. It is expected that any funds raised by the Hamlet would be from grants, donations or informal fundraising."

Hmm. That can't be it.

"Whether a municipality is a city, town or village is not dependent on population or area, but on the form of government selected by the residents and approved by the state legislature. New York State considers counties, cities, towns and villages to be "municipal corporations" and "general purpose" units of local government."

Ah, wikipedia, you will help me!

"In New York State, a city is a highly autonomous incorporated area within a county. It provides almost all services to its residents and has the highest degree of home rule and taxing jurisdiction over its residents. The main difference between a city and a village is that cities are organized and governed according to their charters, which can differ widely among cities, while villages are subject to a uniform statewide Village Law. Also, villages are part of a town (or towns), with residents who pay taxes to and receive services from the town. Cities (except for the City of Sherrill) are independent of towns."

Hmm, this is good, but it's all in New York. Let's search within wikipedia

"The Town and the City is a novel by Jack Kerouac, published by Harcourt Brace in 1950 (ISBN 0-15-690790-9). "


"In the United Kingdom, a city is a town which has been known as a city since time immemorial, or which has received city status by letters patent — which is normally granted on the basis of size, importance or royal connection (traditional pointers have been whether the town has a cathedral or a university). Some cathedral cities, for example St. David's in Wales, are quite small, and may not be known as cities in common parlance. (See the City status in the United Kingdom.)Preston became England's newest city in the year 2000 to mark the Queen's jubilee."

"In general, towns can be differentiated from townships, villages, or hamlets on the basis of their economic character, in that most of a town's population will tend to derive their living from manufacturing industry, commerce, and public service rather than primary industry such as agriculture or related activities.

A place's population size is not a reliable determinant of urban character. In many areas of the world, as in India at least until recent times, a large village might contain several times as many people as a small town"

Hmmm..... Well it seems a place is called what it is because....someone says it is. Wow, if one has royal connections, one could get any town named a city. Well, ok, if one could blackmail the queen. i'm sure she's got some dark secrets here or there.

I saw Hamlet the film once. My mother decided to take me along. At the time I must have been about 12 or 13. I must have been bored out of mind, although I do love the concept of deciding guilt by putting on a play reenacting his crime and seeing how he reacts. I think we've found a new job for crimestoppers!

Always loved that theme tune. "Crimestoppers!" I suspect non-uk residents won't get what I'm talking about there. Actually, probably most residents won't either.... never mind.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Why gay marriage is wrong

10 reasons Gay Marriage is wrong:

1. Being gay is not natural. And as you know Americans have always rejected unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, and air conditioning.

2. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

3. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because, as you know, a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

4. Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can't marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

5. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed. The sanctity of Britany Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

6. Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn't be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren't full yet, and the world needs more children.

7. Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

8. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.

9. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.

10. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven't adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

Via pvp

New formats

I have a sneaking suspicion I have mentioned this before, but what is all this furore about the next generation of DVDS- blue ray or HD?

I mean, yes, obviously for gaming it is useful, and I suppose for series too, because storage is better, but a lot of the conversation being made is about films. Sorry, but surely films will run out of special features to put on the disk? Theres only so many "making of" features one can watch. Also, there are talks about improved picture quality. Huh? Surely theres a limit to this too? I mean, the difference between video and DVD is just about noticable, and it's nice to be able to pause at any point, but is there really going to be much room for improvement? Those crazy guys at Sony!

What frustrates me about the march of progress, however, is the way people do not utilise it properly. The X-box 360 is out now, and I bet about 9/10 of the games on it could have been created on the X-box with worse graphics. These things have huge processors, and we have EA games making yet another sports game, where the difference between one game and the other is that you can design your own kit. I want a game world in which things react like I would expect! I want to kick a can and see it roll away. I want to push against someone and see them fall back. I want to be able to shoot my rocket launcher into a wall and have it do some bloody damage! It is rare that a game is not guilty of this- I know it's a lot of effort, but come on! It is worth it! It is what makes games like Half life 2 transcend, above games like Fear. Yes, Fear has enemies with amazing AI, but if I can't get past a puny barrier because apparently it is immune to all damage, then I will be annoyed.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Searching for holidays

On a whim (well, not at all on a whim actually, but never mind) I was looking for short breaks away in April kind of time. This led me to the problem with search engines on websites. They are almost all crap. A lot of websites this is ok on, because you can simply use google to search within that website, which it is better at about 9 times out of 10. However in the case of searching for holidays you want to be rather specific and it is difficult to specifiy things like "under £100" in google. What I learnt was the site in question loved france, as whatever I searched for, it inevitably said it could not find exactly what I was searching for, but here are some close matches.... they were all in france. I'm not sure why this is, perhaps the site creator is French.

Or, you know, holidays to France are cheap. Whatever.

Anyways, I was thinking briefly about nunchucks. Now, I've seen nunchucks in action and admittedly they can be impressive, but ultimately they are rather impractical as a weapon, which begs the question... who invented them? Swords are obvious- a long sharp bit of metal is hardly an innovation, and neither is a long stick with a sharp bit at the end. Or, you know, just a long stick. But two sticks, attached by bits of metal in the middle? Now thats just crazy talk. I suspect they were created to show off rather than to actually hurt people with, as you can use proper weapons for that. Interestingly, I have chosen not to perform any research on this subject. That would just be silly.

The underdogs

Just a link fo retro gamers, this fantastic site, the underdogs, full of old pc games which were underappreciated at the time, a LOT of the downloads here are free, and, as far as I know, legal. It's definitely worth checking out.

Saturday, January 07, 2006


Yes, I've been a way for... some amount of time, mainly because of a lack of inspiration. To be fair, that's still there, but I'm back in Bath, and here there are hijinks aplenty. I plan to.... well... revise to be fully honest. But wildly!

Exams really are a terrible way of assesing how good someone is at a subject. 2 hours. 2 hours to assess three months of learning. If my mind goes blank, or you ask a question I do not happen to know the answer to, despite knowing everything else, then suddenly I am deemed "bad" at this subject. It's insane, and the governments schemes of increasing the amount of exams kids take is even more insane. Having said that, I do examine rather well, so the system works for me. But it really shouldn't. I don't know what form of assesment is better, admittedly, coursework in mathematics having the difficulty that one can consult notes or the internet and find a solution. And in mathematics no-one can tell if you have solved something by looking it up online, because generally there are only a few ways of doing a question. So meh. I just wish I didn't spend a 1/6 of my life revising and doing my exams. This will continue for another year, too, and if I end up becoming an accountant or actuary, I can look forward to a career of exams. Woohoo.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006


Interesting news. Next Fox will be bringing back Firefly.... seriously, they must have fired about a thousand executives for mistakes.