31 January 2010

who let the dogs out

Courtesy of the House of Pants, and only because one can no longer comment thereabouts, we bring you this story. Because, if you want to buy a dog, the first place you think of is Africa.

Her Pantsitude also
comments on the appearance at the Chilcott Inquiry by Tony Blair. I've been following this myself including at some of the same links. And only once - which I'd be unable to find again inside a fortnight - have I seen a reference to the astounding lack of recognition of Australia's major, major role in the Iraq invasion as spruiked by our very own, once-was, Man of Steel.

Yes, we had a carefully manufactured minor role that could be embellished into something else, like a Special Relationship with the then US president. But no mention at all in the articles, it's like we weren't there at all. Now why would that be?

27 January 2010

dance away

Note to makers of TV dance shows:

  • rolling on the floor is not dancing

  • calisthenics is not dancing

  • lifting somebody is not dancing, unless it is interspersed with actual dancing

  • just waggling your jangly bits and shuddering a lot is not dancing

  • 'popping' certainly is not dancing.
What is dancing?

  • ballet (without rolling on the floor or calisthenics)

  • the Quickstep

  • the Pride of Erin

  • the Canadian Two-Step

  • waltzing.
Also, comparing a national style of dance with some made-up contemporary rubbish is rubbish. Apples, oranges, pears. Also Calisthenics.

Sometimes you run across somebody who has Something Important to say to you, but they just can't articulate it.

Here's one I discovered earlier.

Many might truly believe that such is the Day to Day/ZeroDay to
ZeroDay Reality that Politicians Spin to their Own Sadly Crooked Advantage, for Great Vision and Advanced Intelligence is Missing from their Penny Dreadful Arsenals/Treasuries/MetaDataBase Mines which are Fixated on Hiding Dirty Secrets rather Eliminating and Illuminating Enlightening Secrets.

My response to this can be found in the venerable text of the Beatles' Strawberry Fields Forever:

Always, no, sometimes, think it's me
but you know I know and it's a dream
I think I know, I mean, err yes, but it's all wrong
that is, I think I disagree.

24 January 2010

carry that weight

The Brisbane Sunday Mail carries a story about Huey Lewis and the News. Seems that Huey "was taught to play harmonica by his mum's tenant, Billy Roberts, a folk singer who wrote the classic Hey Joe, made famous by Jimi Hendrix. Roberts gave him a bunch of old harpsichords and with that skill under his belt, Lewis set off hitchhiking across America and then across Europe and North Africa, singing for his supper."

The story goes on, "'I was playing on the streets of Marakesh (Morocco), playing harmonica and surviving," he recalls.'

Presumably the skill he acquired was how to turn harpsichords into harmonicas, by taking them to Europe, where they know about these sorts of things.

Meanwhile, blood pressures around the country are rising as another fake squealer ruins a perfectly good tennis match. I would have thought a squeal that has two definite syllables was less an expression of effort and more a deliberate attempt to unsettle the other player, not to mention millions* of viewers.

* millions = "at least one"

20 January 2010

watching the wheels go round and round

In a sign that Straya Day is just around the corner, today I saw my first car sporting its brand new, made in China, Aussie flag. Inhabitants - perhaps denizens is closer to the mark - of the car were four very large young men, tattoos very visible, dark sunglasses and a set to their mouths that indicated a little thuggery would liven up their day immeasurably.

And the Council wants us to go down to the beach to celebrate Australia Day, when the pub directly across the street closes its carpark to accommodate the queues for the bar. Last year was bloody frightening, to be honest.

I'm relieved that at last some notable Australians, who tend to get listened to seriously, are speaking up that the trend of lots of youths wearing the flag as an invitation to violence is not really what Australia Day should be about. The question is, how many years will it take to reverse the trend?

Meanwhile, the Democrats have lost the traditional seat of Massachusetts, previously owned by the Kennedy dynasty or, later in the evening, the Bee Gees. What this means is that the wheels have fallen off the communist, socialist, leftard takeover of the United States by B. Hussein Obama and we can expect his party - who like all communists, socialists and leftards are weak, spineless, traitors - will be running back to Iraq, Kenya, Indonesia or wherever the hell they came from, pdq. After which all will be well with the world because the filibuster will be reinstated. A filibuster is what I used to call it when I fell off my bicycle.

OK, you can stop laughing now.

In the UK, previously British owned Cadburys has been bought by US firm Kraft which means that its next product, the iChocolate, can only be months away. Thousands of good upstanding British citizens will lose their jobs specifically because someone said they wouldn't, and they'll be replaced by illegal immigrants from Islamia. The Times has all the commentary.

Finally, a nice young man visited us but people had to call him Your Most Extremely Extremeness, because that's what he is. His mother claimed to be the Queen of Hearts (tm), although I could have sworn that was Juice Newton. The only downside is the thousands of forests that had to be cut down to report on his extremelitude in the newspapers, and the coal that had to dug up and burnt to power the proverbial packetloads of pixels to those who are internetically energized, information-wise.

So that's all. Going forward, I forecast fewer blogposts and more meditation, including regular breathing. The political class have emerged from their summer hideaways to engage in their meaningless, forest-devouring, coal-munching, pixel creating twitter (not tm in this case). According to the PM, provided about 357,000 assumptions hold true, we'll all be $16,000 better off in 2060.

The PM also noted that we will be older but in fact, regrettably, many of us will in fact be deceased and I want to know what he's going to do about it.

15 January 2010

in the mood

Some x months ago I would do a Friday night post featuring a YouTube clip of some band or song I really like or I thought was appropriate to a Friday mood.

Some y years before that I would occasionally do a post on one of the many cars that I have owned over the years, using as a motif the 1/43 scale model of that car from my 'collection.'

Now I don't do nothin'. Two weeks back at work - the first was great, whereas at about 9.10 am this last Monday I raised my voice (I think for the first time in the two and a bit years I've been here) and then punched a 4-drawer cabinet (definitely the first time).

Yes, we're back in the swing (insert YouTube clip of Sparks here, or not, depending on whether I can be bothered, no, I couldn't as you will have seen by now).

I'm still spending the odd angry hour trawling the comments threads of stories in the Times, because these provide the backdrop to the mood of the British nation as it heads into the general election which I suspect may be the major political story of the year. It'll put Kevin10 to shame.

But there's not much else to say, so I won't. I'm not in the mood and, as I've observed before, there's plenty of others who do it better if you really want to engage.

But some of
this stuff will surely get you wondering.

The diversity of human...well, it's not really undertaking, is it?

10 January 2010

woke up this mornin' (repeat)

What on earth, I wondered, was a "monkey woman"?

Learn the answer, and also learn a bit about pork.

Sounds like a rattling good read.

06 January 2010

norwegian wood

Company name sign on a ute belonging to a tree lopping firm:

"Hugh Wood"

You wouldn't read about it, would you.

Would you?

05 January 2010

baby don't speak no evil

Extract from an article in a journal I was reading yesterday:

Cloud computing is made possible by new technologies for virtualising
applications from hardware so they can scale, by architecting applications as standardised multi-tenant web services, by engineering for massive scale and by simplifying the way users access applications using the internet.
I was relieved to see that Blogger's spell check, which I usually find pretty useless (for example, it doesn't give me anything useable at my usual mistyping of 'start' as 'strat'), at least found itself flummoxed by 'virtualising' and (oh yes) 'architecting.' That said, I was somewhat surprised to see that spell check did not recognise 'internet', although, given that this is a blogging tool, maybe it was looking for 'intertubez.'

No, it doesn't like that either.

Anyway, back to the article. I imagine that a time-honoured way for the IT profession to gouge fees, where there aren't fees to be gouged, is to write their proposals, reports and recommendations in something approaching Klingon in the hope that management will be impressed. Or, more likely, that no-one in management will have the fortitude to admit that they don't understand what is being put to them.

Well, that's my theory (my other one is about


(Whispers) Actually, it's not mine at all.

(Tee hee.)


Oh, and go
here and here to read some interesting comments threads. The UK will be the place to watch this year. I've commented previously that the Brit papers (mainly) do comments better than here, although the stab 'em and throw away the key brigade can be found out in force elsewhere, and parodied to within an inch of their lives at speek yer brrrranes.

But the UK election will put the Rudd/Abbott megacagefightshowdown ofthedecade (that's provided the decade has actually
started, of course) in the shade, I reckon.

* I promise never to write 'tee hee' in a post ever again, at all.

01 January 2010

living in a child's dream

John W. wrote:
Why is it you so called ozzies try to upset people who are not annoying you?It shows a lack of brain power & comprehension about how a Nation shouldexhibit itself to the World. I'm pretty sure the rest of the World will be again reminded how really childish Australia is. Shame you have'nt grown up like the rest of us...Grow Up!!!

Some of the other comments are crackers, too. However I am bemused by this "so-called ozzies" comment. What would we be otherwise? What about "so-called brits?"

Anyway, I'm digging a big hole in the backyard, at bottom of which I will find either coal, bananas, or China.

Oggie oggie oggie - which is in fact what it used to be even here, when I was (not) growing up.

Hoo roo.


All right. We are now in the teenies, having more or less successfully negotiated the noughties. And as it's New Year's Day, we have to make some resolutions. I'm not sure if there's a rule that you have to, for example, make resolutions before midday (oh no! too late!) or nanna-nap time (coming up soon), sort of like how practical jokes have to be performed (*) before midday on April first.

(*) Do you perform practical jokes or is there some more appropriate verb?

Anyway as we are not unduly hungover and cannot find evidence of any such rule (having cast quickly about the room for clues, no, no posters on the wall or similar) then let us, without too much further ado, make some resolutions. Are we sitting comfortably? If not, buy a new computer chair like we did back in the noughties. Let us begin. No, now.

  1. Remember to breathe.
  2. Breathe more deeply and slowly.
  3. While we are breathing more deeply and slowly, try not to shout at the television as much.
  4. Keep breathing.
  5. Try to realise that not all other motorists are as stupid and incompetent as they appear, so don't shout at them either.
  6. Review resolution No 5 regularly, as I don't believe it is soundly based.
  7. Don't shout at the inutterably stupid letters and SMSs in the newspapers.
  8. Try to be calmer - slow, deep, regular breathing is said to an aid to this.
  9. Work on upper body strength, all the while remembering to breathe.
  10. Remember that just because somebody writes something, it doesn't mean it's either true or makes sense. Particularly anything that starts with "all right-thinking people" or "it's just common sense" or anything attributed to any established religion (particularly religions with a financial improvement fixation, whether for their adherents or themselves).
  11. Actually, try to stop shouting all the time.
  12. Practise the piano.
  13. If this doesn't work, practise playing the piano.
  14. And the guitar.
  15. Continue discovering that playing the piano or the guitar seems to slow the breathing and the blood pressure and you can't shout at things while practising.
  16. Remember that if you are, for example, going to play the guitar for people who, just for example, happen to be at your house for a New Year's Eve party, then it makes good sense not to do this after you've reached the point of intoxication where you, just to pick an example at random, forget the words.
  17. Try to write better blog posts.
  18. For example, don't continue to be so inextricably literal.
  19. Work on whole sentence structure, not just randomly used words to create an impression.
  20. Don't be so competitive, it's not a race.
  21. Review resolution no 20 regularly, as I don't believe it is soundly based.
  22. Keep breathing.
  23. And don't shout so much.

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