Friday, June 28, 2002

The phrase "7 of 9" has two meanings for me now:

1) The fabulously jugular Jeri Ryan who played a Borg character called "7 of 9" in some StarTrek spinoff

2) My score playing this game
This comes courtesy of BBSpot. It's one of the most weirdly haunting (and hauntingly weird) things I've seen in a long, long time. Hint: try the "n" and "p" keys.
AOpen are doing some wacky shit these days. They've released a PC motherboard made with vacuum tubes...

Thursday, June 27, 2002

Who says there's nothing good and wholesome on Chinese TV these days?

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Six degrees of Kevin Bacon? Tired

Two degrees of Rhett Creighton? Wired
I'd always wondered exactly what kind of light was emitted when a woman was said to have her "high beams" on. Now I know. Even scientitists, it seems, can be so blinded by the light of T-rays that they think it's a good idea to pick a moniker like, oh, "Star Tiger" and then retrofit it to be the acronym for a mouthful of crap like "Space Technology Advancements by Resourceful, Targeted and Innovative Groups of Experts and Researchers". I shit you not.

Strange how credulity works. Had I first seen the reference to this peculiarly under-reported technology on, say, abovetopsecret or some other high-quality source of science journalism, I wouldn't have bothered to read on.

Would you have been more or less credulous had you known that the developers of this technology, QinetiQ, were formerly part of the UK's Defense Evaluation and Research Agency?
- Shaun

Monday, June 24, 2002

We all knew that sex wins over booze but now we have political proof.

Friday, June 21, 2002

You know, I always thought of St-Leonards-On-Sea as being a pretty staid, sedate kind of place. A seaside town popular with the blue-rinse set. Basically, a place for those who find Hastings a bit too fast-paced (Hastings, fast, geddit? Never mind)

Imagine my surprise, then, when I learned about some of the things you can do and see there ...
A collection of oldies but goodies. Some you've seen, some you probably haven't.
I drive the 405 every time I go to my company's HQ. So far, this has not happened to me. I guess maybe it's just a matter of time. Consider this: two people, three months, using their home computers.
Pop quiz: What's the most hated day of the week? Probably Monday, right? So, if you were a consulting firm, like, say, PriceWaterhouseCoopersLybrandUncleTomCobbleyAndAll, and you were going to change your name, what would you change it to? Monday?

Didn't think so.

I find it hard to imagine it "tested well with the focus groups".

Still. Nobody ever accused PwC of having a clue.

Further proof of that, then, arrived in the shape of this link, courtesy of Chris, who adds "I love it when the freaky little guy sticks it to the boring big guy". Thanks, Chris.
A good guide to safe driving!

Wednesday, June 19, 2002

Remeber, cleanliness is next to godliness. And apparently, Ponyplay is next to Furvertism. Actually, the main site qualifies as my website of the week.
Man, now all we have to do is remember to wash. Why the fuck can't they ship it to Sweden or Belgium?
I've got a girlfriend,
With bows in her hair,
And nothing is better than that,
Is it?

Tuesday, June 18, 2002

Funny - when I read the Boston Globe article Shaun linked to, I found myself wondering if it were not itself a spoof. I mean, an article about someone being gullible, and one of the names quoted in it lends itself perfectly to the headline "Yu Bin Had" ... ? And the other name is Huang Ke, pronounced "Wanky"?
Truth imitates art. It had to happen sooner or later, if it hadn't already.

Saturday, June 15, 2002

A "meating" of The Club Which Dare Not Speak Its Name was perpetrated last night at Smith & Wollensky in the District.

Last time we were there, we noticed that the walls were liberally sprinkled with plaques. We asked how to get one put up, and our waiter told us "just ask". So we asked. Our waiter then spoke to the manager, and the conversation went something like this:

Waiter: These guys want to have their names up on a plaque
Manager: OK
Waiter: It's a group name
Manager: No, no group names
Waiter: Yeah, but it's a good one
Manager: No group names
Waiter: They want Meat Club
Manager: (Pause) OK

So.

Photos are courtesy of Jeff. He emailed them to me today, but the labels didn't quite match up to the photos ... although it could have been much worse - the hostess could have been labelled either "PileOFish" or "JugOWine" (that's a double magnum, by the way), both of which would have been both grossly offensive as well as oddly appropriate in their inappropriacy. However, the photo that was labelled "OurHostess" was actually the bill, which implied that she rendered "personal services" to us totalling $831, which, sadly, she did not. She, too, had her own double magnums.

Friday, June 14, 2002

I never had a girlfriend with a Dad this cool, but that's probably not a bad thing either.

(you'll likely need ie to view the clip)

Thursday, June 13, 2002

Mother-in-law jokes are so passe', so bad-Catskills-comedians (UK readers: working-men's club (the sort where chicken-in-a-basket is the culinary highlight) comedians), that I wonder if I should even share this. Then I remembered: it's not a joke if it's true.

One of the other items of note in this week's Onion is this story of a young woman's ordeal getting her 60-year-old mother online.

Well, as pathetic as that story is, there are a few things you should bear in mind:

1) The mother in the story (MITS) is more highly motivated than my mother-in-law (MIL)
2) MITS has successfully emailed her daughter - indeed, anyone
3) MITS has successfully navigated to and browsed a Website
4) MITS has mastered, to some extent, Windows
5) MIL has failed to master the complexities of an iMac

There's a saying - we can't choose our relatives, thank goodness we can choose our friends. It's just a shame we can't choose our friends' relatives (I'm lumping spouses in under the general category of friends, here)
You know, I saw that MAD back cover thingy in The Onion too, and discovered just how far I've wandered down the path of convenience over fun.

What I should have done:

  • Downloaded the PDF
  • Printed it out
  • Folded it as directed
  • Had fun!
What I did:
  • Downloaded the thumbnail image
  • Opened it in PhotoShop
  • Cropped it like I folded it
  • Had a, on the whole, miserable time
What does this tell us? Leave art in the form the artist intended! Style over substance! Fun! Fun! Fun!

(Note to Shaun: you could have just moused-over the graphic and you'd have seen it change - even more convenient, and even less fun! - Ken)

Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Does anyone else remember when MAD magazine was actually funny? When it was cutting-edge? Back before it was a division of AOL-TimeWarner? I do. My dad had a huge collection of the books on his shelf, and I devoured them all - "Hopping MAD", "MAD's Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions", "Spy vs. Spy", "Good'n'MAD", "MAD's Dave Berg Looks At The Lighter Side Of ...", "The Kama Sutra" ... well, never mind what I read.


The point is, I learned a great deal about American culture and everyday life from reading those books. And though I didn't understand all the references to Nixon, or Watergate, or Vietnam (I was, what, seven or eight at the time), I found a lot of it genuinely funny, and I credit those MAD books every bit as much as I do Monty Python for my love of subversive, parodic humo(u)r today.


Incidentally, seems this guy gets it, too.


So it came as a mostly-pleasant surprise today when I came across this affectionate tribute to the genius of MAD magazine in the Onion, perhaps MAD's spiritual heir and successor to the idiot-king throne of biting satire and dead-on parody.


I say "mostly" because I found it just a tad uncomfortable that the article's content so unflinchingly references, some might even say mocks, the recent brutal killing of WSJ reporter Daniel Pearl. But, hey, the Onion may be accused of many things, but, just like its quintessential comedic ancestor MAD, shying away from controversy isn't one of them.

Tuesday, June 11, 2002

The Onion brings you the "Ask A ..." feature, but only reprobates brings you "Ask The Imam". This week's topic "Is having a Slave (girl) for sex nowdyas is allowed?" (sic). Thanks, once again, to John.
Eric S. Raymond (he of the Hacker's Dictionary, in which I have an entry (sense 2 was mine), and no relation AFAIK to Paul Raymond) on bad porn - required reading. Safe for work, but don't follow the links unless, like me, you have an HR director like mine, with whom I had the following exchange:

She: Australia's great if you're a woman. There are three guys for every woman.
Me: So you're telling me that all Aussie women are three-input?
She (punching my shoulder): Stoppit!
This is funny because it is so earnest (by which I mean, of course, so in the style of the late Jim Varney's character Ernest P. Worrell) - a Eurotrash (click the link and scroll down to the bottom of the page for definition) superhero. Thanks, John.
How to deal with small yappy type dogs, courtesy of Umbro

Thursday, June 06, 2002

If you were a "normal" kid like me, you killed and ant or two with a magnifying glass and had fun doing it. If you want to relive those good old days, with a new modern twist, check this out.

Wednesday, June 05, 2002

Got a kid that likes to act out the last scene from the Blair Witch Project? Shykids make the perfect dolls.
It's a wonder the human race has survived so long considering that most of us are dumb as toast. It's even more surprising given that you need a computing degree to properly perform even the most basic day-to-day activities...

Monday, June 03, 2002

In the DC area, our local all-news radio station is WTOP. You can hear it here. This, on the other hand, is a dead-on parody of the format from the good folks at Modern Humorist. Or so.
I have a Porter-Cable framer's saw, and its base is made of magnesium, and when I found this out, like any pyro, my first thought was "I wonder how well it would burn?" Students of the history of cool computers may remember that the NeXT cube's case was also made of magnesium, and Simson Garfinkel, it seems, is a pyro, with access to exactly what you need to find out precisely how well one of them burns.
Handmade progressive utilitarian kilts.