December 31, 2005

iYear - 2005

Of the 3751 songs on the iPod, these are the 20 most played. There is a distinct hint of bias here.

1. Part of the Queue - Oasis - 22 plays
2. Where's The Beef? - Advert - 21
3. Lyla - Oasis - 20
4. Dalek Squeak - Dr Who - 19
5. Mind The Gap - London Underground - 19
6. The Hindu Times - Oasis - 16
7. My Happy Ending - Avril Lavigne - 14
8. They - Jem - 14
9. 206 Manchester's Radio - Advert - 13
10. Sven Sven Sven (Glorious Munich) - Bell & Spurling - 13
11. Nuns, nuns. Reverse, reverse! - Father Ted - 12
12. A Hard Day's Night - The Beatles - 11
13. Hey Baby, Uh Ahh! (2002 World Cup) - DJ Ötzi - 11
14. Don't Get Any Better - Geri Halliwell - 10
15. Wonderwall - Oasis - 10
16. Chiyo's Cooking Song - Azumanga Daioh - 10
17. Catch Us If You Can - Dave Clark Five - 10
18. Maybe - Emma Bunton - 10
19. I like cake - Father Ted - 10
20. BBC Schools Diamond - Advert - 10

Of the top 20, 14 were from the UK, 8 were under 30 seconds long and to compound this, of the top 100 only 42 of them are actual songs. The reason for this is that adverts and promos are shorter so don't tend to get switched off as often. Also, the iPod only counts something as being played once it's reached the end; it records nothing if you change tracks half way through. In theory it would be possible to use up an entire battery and never record a single played item.

Horse 468 - Cat 5

A cat is a nocturnal killing machine through careful processes of breeding and selection by humans have been bred to ignore and sponge off of their human benefactors.

It has been said that cats don't have masters but staff. I don't belive this to be true, for one doesn't have to wait as an attendant on a cat; if you actually did they'd walk off as though they didn't care anyway.

It must be a difficult life sleeping 17, 18, 19 hours a day, moving for the occasional yawn and crick. When they do move, they'll see you a source to be fed from and as a door operator.
People talk of the added asthetic benefits of companionship. I for one don't know how true this is if they move to the other side of the room and perch in front of a window staring at the sky - what is so exciting about the sky anyway?

Perhaps other people's cats have a nicer and friendlier temprement than ours. Previous cats we've had will curl up on you or sit in the middle of the newspaper, sometimes sleeping on top of the television set but our current one?

You could argue that maybe the nasty ones have been mistreated or hurt and that's why they're so aloof, but ours has been cared for, groomed and given an easy life... maybe our cat is just plain... catty.

December 30, 2005

Horse 467 - Land of 1000 Dances

There are lots of dances that start to be done up and down this wide brown land in the summer. In the winter when there aren't as many people about, then the only real danced that's done is the "Avoid smelly people on the train dance".

The Beach:
Provided you've escaped the hoardes of "middle eastern appearance" and the "right wing neo-nazis" who seem to be prepared to fight each other on the beaches, you might be able to do the traditional dances associated with summer.

Car Park Dance: This dance is because the carparks will be black tar and in the sun all morning. Rinny-run-run-run Rinny-run-run-run across the carpark until you find somewhere to stop the soles of your feet from burning.

Hot Sand Dance: The hot sand although not black is also going to be extremely hot after being in the sun all day. Here an effort is made because as well as touching hot sand, you're also sinking into the stuff. You can exactly run effectively in sand either.

Million Point Dance: When everyone is well and truly burnt to a crisp there is another interesting phenomenon. People no longer want to be out in the sun so they'll retreat back up the beach to where it's dry and hopefully under an umbrella. The problem is that dry sand is far more mobile and in the wind, the grains against burnt skin turn into a million pin pricks a second. This dance is more of a squirm.

Hot Butt Car Dance: When it's time to go home you can repeat the Hot Sand Dance and the Car Park Dance and then get back into a hot car. By this stage the vynyl seats will be like a hotplate just perfect for searing already tender skin and so comes the last dance. This dance is done under such conditions and hopefully by the time you get home the air-con has cooled the house down... you hope.

I don't do these dances, I'm at ease back in the pavillion with a chocolate milkshake and a copy of the newspaper doing the crossword. I have big boots and jeans which prevents any of these dances from being done. I'm scientifically bred to live in a peat bog and at 15 degrees below. The Australian summer is ludicrous.

December 28, 2005

Horse 466 - Pole Ball

There is a council park in Northmead with a "walled" basketball court. By walled I mean those largish mesh fences that stand 15 feet tall. Basketball is a sport for the very tall of the world, and those people who are able to shoot from far away.

Most of my friends do not have this ability, so we came up with our own game.

Pole Ball:

Pole Ball is very similar indoor football in nature. The obvious differences being that instead of there being a goal, there is only a pole. Also, we decided that because it was so easy to shoot from pretty well much anywhere, within the circle, everyone is allowed to use their hands in defence of the ball. Other variations follow in that you are allowed to push and shove anyone you want, irrespective of whether they have the ball or not. Oh and did I mention that this also includes pushing people into the wall - also allowed.

You can have a really great shot lined up and be ready to kick when someone will either shoulder you off the ball or worse, someone will come along, shove you in the back and then push your face into the wall.

It's more akin to the original spirit of the game of football, a form of organised mayhem. It's veyr easy to see why in 1314 the then Mayor of London, Nicholas Farndon, issued a proclamation:
"And whereas there is a great uproar in the City through certain tumults arising from the striking of great footballs in the field of the public – from which many evils perchance may arise – which may God forbid – we do command and do forbid, on the King's behalf, upon pain of imprisonment, that such games shall not be practised henceforth within this city."
Admittedly Farndon didn't want shopfronts and windows being destroyed, and certainly by the time the FA was founded in1861, this ancient proclamation was ignored. It does make you wonder what an uncontained football match would look like. It would be very different from the great terraces of today.

Pole Ball at least recaptures the mood with all this pushing and shoving; you get a very fast paced game which doesn't require skill but does require a liberal use of Band-Aids. How many times have we walked away from this covered in scrapes and bruises? If you get out the Dettol to disinfect the wounds, it's like having 15,000 stinging nettles pressed against your skin at once.

Some people will tell you of the pain of losing. I wonder if they played Pole Ball whether they'd also tell of the sting of winning. Pain of imprisonment? I wonder of that is like a grazed knee.

December 25, 2005


I think I've been given a wonderful present by God in 2005. Time will tell though... I hope so.

December 22, 2005

Horse 464 - School's Out For Summer, School's Out Forever

I love the school holidays. Obviously I finished school nearly 10 years ago but that still doesn't change the fact. When all of the little dears and malchicks have gone home for the year an amazing transformation happens to Sydney's roads.

Instantly great open areas of free space begin to appear and traffic begins to move freely. Al Parady in Skytracker 7 and Sando with his Cage updates run out of things to report (though interestingly Skytracker 7 has an obsession with the M4 & M5).

At work, parking spots within a couple of hundred feet suddenly free up and hoardes of mothers driving XC90's, Cayennes and Range Rovers with the biggest sets of bull-bars the world has ever seen (children and strollers are dangerous things that need to be held at bay while mothers who've never driven anything bigger than a Corolla before tear around the district whilst on their mobiles, smoking and fixing their lipstick) magically disappear.

Within the schoolyard there are no shrieks, no yelling and no crying because a bunch of mean girls were bullying someone else into an eating disorder - though to be fair, the boys aren't flushing each others heads or beating up Billy-No-Mates for his lunch money. The girls at Mosman High who wait for me to walk by aren't calling out "Sexy Hair" to me at the moment either.

Goodwill toward men and peace on earth. Definately peace... so much serenity.

December 21, 2005

Horse 463 - V8 Supercars 3

Toca Race Driver 3, V8 Supercars 3 or DTM Race Driver 3: Same game different name depending on the markets. We have an official release date for it in Australia - 24th February 2006.

I was watching a beta release over at Grace Bros city store yesterday, some of the menus still hadn't been filled in and obviously quite a number of events had been cut out for demo purposes but let me just say, it looks smooth and is now getting to the stage where you could pass off a screen shots as a photo taken from a mobile phone.

No dobut B and B2 will be looking to re-assert their dominance on the console, but I will be making sure that when this comes out, I will be putting in the hard yards to steal the crown away. And that's not even why I want the game.

There are classic GP cars from the late 60's and those drop-dead gorgeous W156 Mercedes-Benz streamliners in the game just waiting to be thrashed. I hope that one major deficiency in V8 Supercars 1 and 2 is addressed and that is to run cars across categories and circuits. I would love to run 55 cars at Bathurst and have the DTM go head to head to the V8 Supercars and if they bothered with the BTCC them as well.

In the meantime you'll have to be content with the screenshots coming out of the Codemasters website, they are tempting indeed. Christmas came 2 months early as far as I'm concerned.

December 20, 2005

Horse 462 - Kiss St Rollox Adieu

I mentioned the Franz Ferdinand song The Fallen in my Top Albums of 2005. One thing puzzled me, I knew a little bit about St Rollox from a short spell in Glasgow (in fact you have to pass through the area on the way to Ibrox - it's deep in Rangers territory), but other than that it was more than a wee bit daft to have something vauguely named after me in a song*.

So what does kissing St Rollox Adieu actually mean?

Glasgow St. Rollox was a constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1885 until 1950.

"St. Rollox Adieu" is both a combination of the idea of rejecting saintly figures and St Rollox being the name of the huge 24 hour Tesco near Dennistoun, where the character the song is based upon would go for steaks and other juicy consumables. The German is irrelevant, other than being funny and handy for the rhyme.

The actual area in Glasgow once boasted the tallest chimney in the world as well as the largest railway marshalling yard. St Rollox was not exactly a wealthy area at all. Apart from its industrial nature, it also happened to be the home of the Plague in Scotland and this is where it draws its name. St Rollox is a French derivation of St Roch who it is believed treated people who had the plague; as such St Rollox is the patron saint for those who have the plague.
No wonder someone would want to leave there.

*I'm so vain, I know that song was written about me.I'm so vain, I know that song was written about me, wasn't it, wasn't it?
Well it was.

December 17, 2005

Horse 461 - The Best Albums of 2005

Every year I give my top five albums for the year. 2005 was somewhat interesting because I'd honestly thought at the beginning of the year that the whole year would be derivative, I'd had a look at the supposed release dates for various things and came up with a few idea of what might be good but in the end, perhaps I shouldn't judge records by their covers before I've even seen said covers.

5. Girls Aloud - Chemistry

Usually you'd expect a manufactured band from a competition like Popstars to fade completely from sight. This is one of those examples when keen management and writing from the artists themselves hasn't produced mediocre shash.
This is a solid record with a number of tracks you'd expect to here again and again. If the disc was sold in Oz it would be one of those summer pop releases on permanent repeat on 2Day FM, but it wasn't released here so yet again Sony gyp the Australian Public.

Stand out: Track 9 - Long Hot Summer
It's been a long hot summer and it's 95° in the shade.

4. Geri Halliwell - Passion

Time and the press haven't been kind to this former Spice Girl. Her previous album Scream If You Want To Go Faster, was made obviously in a rush and in direct competition with other Spices but time had moved on.
Thankfully with this offering Geri appears to have done just that, moved on. Some of the tracks perhaps are in the vein of Madonna but the gems on here come about when she leaves pop behind and moves into cabaret. Hopefully by the time the next album comes out, the pretense of pop will have disappeared, because her voice is more akin to Shirley Bassey rather than Shirley Manson.

Stand out: Track 12 - So I Give Up On Love
Names have been changed to protect the innocent

3. Jem - Finally Woken

When I first heard the opening single off the album I thought that Dido had gone trip-hop. Jemma Griffiths' voice is hauntingly mellow and by rights this is that sort of voice that should be singing arias not electronica.
What makes this record even more interesting to listen to are the other instruments on here, they include a sitar, double bass, spanish guitar, mini harp and even yes, a hot water bottle - weird.

Stand out: Track 1 - They
Who made up all the rules? We follow them like fools.

2. Franz Ferdinand - You Could Have It So Much Better

A lot of bands you hear happen to be a one trick pony, the problem with Franz Ferdinand is that one trick happens to be very very good. Like the first album this is characterised by their stylised, almost robotic thumping back beats - this really is rock-and-roll.
It's really disconcerting to listen to a track which can have things playing at different time signatures in either ear. It's not impossible to get computers to do this but actual musicians is a real talent.

Stand out: Track 1 - The Fallen
And the Kunst won't talk to you
Because you kissed St Rollox Adieu
Because you robbed a supermarket or two
Well, who gives a damn about the profits of Tesco?

1. Oasis - Don't Believe The Truth

Biased? Maybe. Oasis Mark 2 is different to a Gallagher driven Mark 1, somehow "the biggest band in the world" is more democratic, with writing credits to all members except Zak Starkey who arrived as a session drummer (sounds like his old man this, eh?)
This is a band that no longer has to impress record execs, because they own their own label. Even Lyla the first single although very big and thumpy is probably only the 5th or 6th best on the album. Trust me this is the album that die-hard Oasis fans have been waiting for three years, a true understated epic. If you fell out of love with Oasis, then this album will bring you home.

Stand out: Track 8 - Part Of The Queue
Suddenly I've found that I've lost my way in the city,
The streets and the thousands of colours all bleed into one.

December 15, 2005

Horse 460 - Answering Machines

In our increasingly busy lives we often encounter automated answering machines, by a myriad of push buttons and prompts we may end up speaking to an operator in a country not our own. What of the home answering machine?

There are no buttons to speak of and generally you're asked to leave a name and number after the beep. In certain examples when this is not necessarily a good idea I like to leave message anyway with details as to what to do next. What happens if you've made a hash of it?

I made a right royal pillocky git of myself this afternoon. Not in part caused by the fact the answering machine I left a message on was in a different time zone but also because as I made the phone call from a work phone (via a private calling card - local charge connect) then to call that number back wouldn't exactly achieve the results. On top of that, I'm not even entirely sure that the message made sense.

Aw well, they'll get a nice message from me... sounding like a nervous git ^_^

December 14, 2005

Horse 459 - Super Sedition

I have a question that I think requires a serious answer. Now that we have our new sedition laws, could we please arrest Alan Jones without trial for breaking same?

"Come to Cronulla this weekend to take revenge. This Sunday, every Aussie in the Shire get down to north Cronulla to support the Leb and wog bashing day." The now famous SMS, read on Sydney's 2GB by Alan Jones, seems dangerously close to inciting violence. So is it sufficiently provocative to rouse the sedition provisions of the new anti-terror legislation?

Given that some commentators have been reluctant to conclude that the attacks are racially motivated – and by this logic, the acts might not fall under the jurisdiction of racial discrimination laws – could sedition be the best way to prosecute wrongdoers?

Here's that provision again:

80.2 Sedition. Urging violence within the community
(5) A person commits an offence if:
(a) the person urges a group or groups (whether distinguished by race, religion, nationality or political opinion) to use force or violence against another group or other groups (as so distinguished); and
(b) the use of the force or violence would threaten the peace, order and good government of the Commonwealth.
Penalty: Imprisonment for 7 years.

(6) Recklessness applies to the element of the offence under subsection-5 that it is a group or groups that are distinguished by race, religion, nationality or political opinion that the first-mentioned person urges the other person to use force or violence against.

Now by that logic, Alan Jones who has been openly racist on his radio program before, now should be arrested by Federal Police, because certainly the propogation of the SMS in question and broadcasting it on national radio constitues an incitement to violence. Please can we? Or is the Federal Goverment too scared to apply the laws to its own?

December 11, 2005

Horse 458 - UFO Catcher

UFO Catcher - Flashy lights, music that comes from the best that SEGA has to offer and generally only one prize in the machine worth playing the game for. The solution, buy the machine or work out how to steal said prize from the machine. Sure as heck, that claw isn't going to pick up the prize that you want, and the only people who are capable of playing the machine and winning prizes have probably already won the game plenty of times before and now they don't even want the prizes.

I could work out some method of breaking into the machine but the proprietor might get mad and have me thrown out but I really really would like to have the prize.

Allegory is wonderful and I know what I want to say, but I don't want to blurt it out to the world, so I'll keep staring at the machine in quiet wonder, working out how to win...


December 09, 2005

Horse 457 - Snakes on a Plane

Snakes on a Plane - Yes I kid thee not, it's actually a genuine film in production with Samuel L. Jackson in it.

This is the premise of the film: On board a flight over the Pacific Ocean, an assassin, bent on killing a passenger who's a witness in protective custody, lets loose a crate full of deadly snakes. It sounds fair enough I guess until you start to think about it.

The premise of this movie relies on the fact that the vast majority of people are completely ignorant of things like reptile biology, customs protocols, or the fact that IT'S REALLY EASY TO BEAT A SNAKE (or anything that's small) TO DEATH WITH A SERVING TRAY!!! I mean are people really so stupid? Ok, ONE snake on the plane, stuffed down the assassin's pants I could believe. People smuggle animals that way all the time. Hell, I'll be generous and say 3 at a stretch. But a whole crate?! How do you even get a crate onto the plane without having to check it into cargo!?¿ I think that customs officials would be a little suspicious upon picking up all the wiggling snake-skeleton shapes in his bag for a start.

There is also one thing they seem to have forgotten about. Snakes are cold blooded and hibernate when it's too cold for them. Solution: Turn up the air-con so all the snakes go to sleep, round them up in a bag and lock them in the hold.

Snakes on a Plane sounds to me like one of those exotic cocktails with an Allens Snakes Alive! lolly in the top. Perhaps you could make your own Snake on a Plane using Midori and lemon
halves for wings, or even peach schnapps of something but the premise of a film?


iFive - 9th Dec

It's amazing just how much is stolen in the world of music. Look What You've Done by Jet is a mod of the opening Don't Look Back in Anger by Oasis which itself is rip from Imagine by John Lennon. The new Madonna single has the hook from Gimme Gimme Gimme by Abba and even the Beatles stole She Loves You for use in All You Need Is Love by themselves.

Then there's The Byrds who stole from Ecclesiates. In the context of their album it was supposed to show the utter futility of the Vietnam War but all it did in reality was prove that there is nothing new under the sun.

1. Look What You've Done - Jet
2. Gimme Gimme Gimme - Abba
3. Pass Me Down The Wine - Oasis
4. All You Need Is Love - The Beatles
5. Turn Turn Turn - The Byrds

December 08, 2005

Horse 456 - Dead Famous

It was 25 years ago today,
That John Lennon went and passed away.

If you have heard by now, today the 8th of December 2005 is the 25th anniversary of John Lennon's death. He was shot by a crazed fan etc etc etc... boring. It's not exactly the sort of death that a rockstar usually has.

Bob Marley - Reggae man and rasta extraordinare died of toe cancer. Yup toe cancer! He could have have it cut out but due to his Rastafarian beliefs that the body must be whole, he never ever did and it spread... toe cancer!

Elvis Presley the King of Rock and Roll was found dead because of a heart attack at his home in Graceland. Now ordinarily a death by heart attack caused by over-prescription of drugs isn't all that noteworth but Elvis was found... on the toilet at the time.

Everyone who was alive knows where they were at the time when President John Kennedy was shot but there was something more sinister afoot than just a guy in a book depository or another chap behind the grassy knoll.
On Nov 23 the announcement hit Britainand delayed the start of one of the country's most important TV shows... Dr Who. Dr Who was delayed by 15 minutes because Kennedy was assassinated.
Now I don't know about you, but the Dalek invasion of Earth in later episodes also occurs on Nov 23, 1963. Co-incedence? I think most definately not. Clearly the Daleks wanted to cause confusion so that they could invade London and use that as a distraction.

Harold Holt the PM of Australia went swimming off the coast near Portsea and never returned. Although the Victorian state coroner had found that the evidence and the lack of a body would make drowning the most likely scenario, it can't helped but be argued that he was taken by a shark, a Russian submarine of a giant migratory squid.

I heard in a song suicide is painless
and it's 80% sure to make you famous.

They're all dead famous now that they're dead. And they're more famous because they're dead, and their deaths are famous and they're dead and famous...


Horse 455 - Don't Ask the Question

I was around at B's for his 35th last night for dinner with a dozen people in the lounge room. It was quite a surreal experience to be sitting on a lounge suite with a full dining table in front of you; added to this was the fact the the table was so much higher than the lounge, so it was like being 6 years old again.

Among the guests was B's dad who is quite a card I must say. One of the most dastardly questions was asked, one that should never be posed by parents; I don't know if they do it through concern or because they like to stir but the question is this: "When are you going to get married and give me some grandchildren?"

Invariably I myself have been asked this by my parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, friends etc (change variants where required) and I for one find this annoying.

Now for the crux: It's my fault!

Usually you'd go "Aw, that's horrible you shouldn't beat yourself up like that" but it's true. I'm not really looking for a prospective partner as I can think of more productive ways to use my time: namely in ministry, going to bible studies, watching football, education etc and secondly (and this is most blaise) is that whatever God intends will come to pass. That's not to say you can just sit back and wait but by the same token, my future is held is stronger and more secure hands than my own.

Also there is the secondary argument that I'm really quite different from everyone else I know. People often tell me this and I believe them because it's true. There is no-one who's had the bizarre range of experiences I've had and no-one who sees the world even remotely like I do.

If "the one" exists, she'd either be a very strange or a very very tolerant lady. Either way I'd either feel sorry or excited for her to some degree and if I have or haven't already met her then I don't see the circumstances yet but in hindsight it will be obvious.

December 06, 2005

Horse 454 - This Has Been a Production Of...

A scriptwriter taps away at a computer or a typewriter putting ideas into words so that the actors can deliver the lines of a story. Scriptwriters will change their work if something doesn't scan or if something else sounds better as a spoken word.

Set designers and location managers give us the context of the story. They'll look for a place where the story happens, often working with costume designers so that the characters move through space and time.

Lighting directors and the film crew give the visual media a life. They create the mood and record the acting onto film for posterity. They can soften or heighten the moments by use of lenses, they can make the set look dark and angry, by changing the colours of lights and filters they can sepia the view to take us back in time.

The producers and directors drive all of the rest of the staff. It is their vision that will see a film come to life, they will pay the actors, work out where and how everyone needs to move act and create. Often they are the commissioners of the masterpiece, sometimes with directors above them as their benefactors.

A comic book artist who doesn't have loads of dosh and is a hack like me, is all of these roles. I make my creations dance on the page and contort my pencils and inks to my will. Yet in the west, comic book artists aren't taken seriously.

I am the production house.

All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players? What other medium allows someone to tell a story, hire and fire people without cause, change settings, angles, and all of the visuals at the whim of a an imagination?

From the same pen can appear both cute and evil images all in and black and white. Since most people respond to visual cues, you can direct them to what you would have them think, feel and judge about the world of your creation.

That's more power than a film studio has. The pen truly is mightier than the sword.

December 04, 2005

Horse 453 - Hidden Lion, Tigering Crouch

Peter Crouch ended his agonising wait for a goal in style as Liverpool earned their sixth league win in a row. Crouch thought he had opened the scoring but his deflected shot, which was helped in by Mike Pollitt, was later credited to the Wigan keeper.

But there were no doubts about the giant hitman's next effort, when he superbly lifted the ball over the advancing Pollitt to double the lead. Luis Garcia chested in from Fernando Morientes' header to seal the victory.

Crouch received a standing ovation when he was withdrawn after 74 minutes and his relief was tangible. That was hardly surprising - when the 11th minute passed he had gone 24 hours without scoring for club or country.

Liverpool the defending Champions of Europe still have a game in hand on Man Utd and if that is played out if effectively puts them into second after the worst start to a season in the club's history. Rafa's side has gone six games without dropping a point of late and perhaps only perhaps, if the £9bn blue pustule on the south bank of the Thames falter, the the 'pool could find themselves one away from a second star.

December 03, 2005

Horse 452 - Wet Wet Wet

In 1519 Ferdinand Magellan became the first person to sail across the Pacific. In 1927 Charles Kingsford-Smith became the first person to fly across the Pacific. There is now a new nam to add to this, for in 2005 myself, Andrew Thomas Rollason esq. & explorer extraordinare became the first person to walk through the Pacific.

Last night my friends went to a pub in Glebe. I found out at about 6pm and took a train into town - big mistake. When I stepped out of the train at Central, a monumental wall of water fell out of the sky and proceeded to dump it's aqueous load all over the place. I walked the 5.4km in the biggest downpour of '05 and by the time I got there I was saturated.

I was wetter than William Westinghouse when he wanted to take a whirl in his Westinghouse 100 washing machine when it was set to whites and wollens, that's how wet I was.

There's a lesson in all of this: when the weatherman tells you that storms are expected - believe him.

December 01, 2005

Horse 451 - Sack the PM - You're Fired!

This post is in favour of firing the Prime Minister of Australia who has been proven to be a horrid little man. I now tout the following reasons:

1. Destroying the Republican debate with the support of a dishonest campaign and his refusal to ask the simple question "Would the people of Australia prefer an Australian Head of State?". His assertion was that there was nothing wrong with the current system. He subsequently cornered that role for himself and attends functions that should be reserved for the G.G.

2. After declaring there was nothing wrong with the current system, he refused to sack Hollingworth when it was proved he had lied.

3. Wiping out any chance of reconciliation with Aboriginal people and spending millions on lawyers to rebut the Stolen Generation in an attempt to gain compensation for their systematic poor treatment by the Aust. governments of the past.

4. Lying over the Children overboard affair and capitalising on other peoples misfortunes for his own political gain.

5. Locking up children in mandatory detention.

6. Again defending the current Head of State system and defending the monarchy, he turned his back on over 100 years of parliament convention and shut down parliament for George Bush’s visit, for what purpose? take the limelight.

7. Doing nothing about Timor until something had to be done and then took credit from the good work done by the troops.

8. Bailing out his brother’s company out with government funds and then writing that off as a business grant.

9. Starving higher education of funds, to the extent where only well off people will be able to afford to send their kids to University, or they can pay a debt for the rest of their life.

10. Nuzzling up to Kerry Packer and Murdoch to get favourable press before the 2000 election with the government's forced resumption of land and then selling it to them for a peppercorn amount.

11. Refusing to sack Reith, Wooldridge, Cameron (morals crusader caught cheating on his wife) Heffernan, Tuckey, Draper, Abbot for abusing parliamentary rights.

12. Complaining that the Labor govt. spent $11 Million on advertising government initiatives leading up to the 1996 election, he then proceeded to spend $123 Million in 2004.

13. Refusing to sign the Kyoto agreement because it didn't suit US interests.

14. Turning senior public servants, including defense/intelligence into servants who dare not provide advice they know will not support the government’s position. And then claiming to be strong on terrorisim.

15. Saying in February 2003 at the National Press Club that going to Iraq to remove Saddam alone was no reason to be part of an invasion force.

16. Presiding over the highest taxing government in the western world and then crows about budget surplus and then fritters it all away on vote buying.

17. The straight out lie that $8bn from the sale of Telstra would be contributed to the "environment" (where did that $8bn go?).

18. Tariff reduction, and the signing of a Free Trade Agreement whereby all terms that Australian produce farmers proposed were dropped and US terms of agreement on medicines were accepted corpus bolus. Instantly we saw SPC move its operations to Mexico, Mitsubishi close its engine plant, BHP move worldwide HQ to Canada and News Corp delist from the ASX.

19. Tax benefits for the CSIRO cut and the removal of R&D grants for medical research.

20. Increasing university fees rise fivefold.

21. The Children Overboard Scandal.

22. Sale of the remaining portion of Telstra without adequate checks on continued service after the sale.

23. The dismantling of ATSIC and the removal of the Aboriginal Arbitration Court. The Aboriginal plane flight scandal.

24. Imposition of a GST which by its nature must be a regressive tax (yes Rob, poor people do pay more).

25. The Anti-Terrorism legisation which will give ASIO the ability to lock anyone in detention for an indeterminate period of time without charge or public reason.

26. The removal of the award system, long service leave, overtime pay and penalty rates, four weeks paid holiday, the rights to negotiate with the help of a union, dismantling of the AIRC and the Industrial Relations legislation generally.

27. The refusal to help any of its citizens abroad regardless of whether there's been proof of guilt or not. Not that it matters much anyway because once you leave Australia, the government refuses to know who you are ala Corby, Leslie and Van Nguyen.

Under the old rules you needed three warnings before you could fire someone. I've found 27 points of gross negligence, incompotence and/or corruption. When the IR legislation is passed tomorrow and if I was in charge of the PM's personal pay, I'd fire him - under the legislation that he passed; without reason and be totally legally justified in doing so.
Not happy John!

Horse 450 - << deleted >>

This blog post has been impounded for a breach of the Comedic Prose and Live Sketch Act 1934 (Cwlth) subsection B554 violation: Lack of Punchline.

We apologise for any inconvenience caused.

November 30, 2005

Horse 449 - Mad Ferret

When Oasis come to town in Australia, very very few people actually know about it. Their latest album made it to No.5 in Australia and there've been 3 singles all of which have gone multi-platinum in the UK but because of a falling out with Sony/BMG, they don't get airplay in Australia. Having said that, all shows in Australia sold out in just 4 minutes; I was lucky to get two tickets.

This is a band who still show that they know what it's like to be "the biggest band in the world", an Oasis concert is more like a football crowd with very loyal fans who in a lot of cases have every record disc despite not being released in that country. With such songs as Lyla and (What's the Story?) Morning Glory the 10,000 strong crowd was as equally as loud as the band, and I think it perhaps still surprises them.
The performance of Wonderwall was dedicated to the "Australian Rugby who is going through a rough time at the moment, and to Australian Football which had finally woken up".

What I find surprising is the amount of talent that Zak Starkey has behind a drumkit. Grant that he was in The Who for nearly 10 years but his flourishes and rolls are something which his dad would have found difficult. Also, he must find My Generation to be a bit dull by now having played it in The Who and now as the standard closing number for Oasis.

After seeing Green Day and Coldplay and now Oasis in a calendar year, Oasis make Green Day look like a bunch of American Idiots and with Coldplay's record - X & Why?
Don't Believe the Truth... go on, miss out on the 55 minutes of noise and confusion, I dare you.

November 29, 2005

Horse 448 - Pocky Madness 2

When walking through a shopping mall at 2am this morning in pursuit of some instant ramen and a bottle of sake (most recipes call for rice vinegar but I find sake produces a sweeter and more tangyer taste), I happened on the snacks aisle and found that my local Asian supermarket now has 15 flavours of Pocky.

Pocky is a long biscuity snack that's usually covered in some sort of chocolate. The snack is so popular that it's one of those things which is almost as famous in Japan as say the Tim Tam is in Australia. What's even more bizarre is that the snack even has it's own girl-pop-band. The snack has appeared in well over 4 dozen anime series as well.

Well now I find that Glico have plans to set up a factory in Australia and export it back to Japan because it's cheaper to do this here than in the country of origin. It's already produced in Singapore but demand outstrips production there.

I hope that because it's made here that we start to see it in the biscuit aisle of regular supermarkets. Actually truth in point I'd prefer to see Australia adopt both sets of traditions that go along with Valentines Day in Japan (and pick up White Day) because then maybe, I might find that someone else may buy lots of it for me...

I like Pocky.

November 28, 2005

Horse 447 - Technical Graphicy Stuff

I am feverishly working out the problems of scanning stuff into the computer and am being stopped at every signpost. I would like for my proposed graphic novel/webcomic/submission to Oztaku to be at 600 dpi and in greyscale but this produces an image size of 28meg in A4.


It's huge. It could go for the black and white surrealism of Sam & Fuzzy or the aceribic colours of Questionable Content but neither of these solve how I get from A5 and about 30 tones of rich pencil and ink to something I can post. It's a living nightmare.

Also, I've found that a lot of the stuff I've done is requiring far less than the 140 backgrounds that I drew. It's amazing how many times you can repeat the same shot of looking outwards from behind a bar or into a lounge room. I especially like the little things I can do at this stage with just paper where I can create hidden action by the placement of objects (it's possible to have someone playing a pinball machine by merely standing in front of it).

If you do a stop-frame analysis of most Warner Bros. cartoons you'll find that they use limited animation and the prolonged exaggeration of stuff for comic timing. On the other hand, in something like Neon Genesis Evangelion, they showed a heightened sense of tension with a completely silent and still shot of two protagonists for a full 53 seconds.

I've also discovered that there's a lot of continuity issues that have to be addressed. If someone has five buttons omn their shirt, then they should always have five. Likewise, number plates should remain specific to the area of region intended because I've been reading through webcomics forums and there are anoraks out there who do look for this stuff.

Oh dear.

November 27, 2005

Horse 446 - Canberra

The City of Canberra was proclaimed in 1913 after it was decided that the nation's capital should be half-way between Sydney and Melbourne. At this point the modern-day city exists, as a giant waste of time, space, energy and mass (the whole Einsteinian conglomo).

The word Canberra itself means meeting place which itself is ironic as like Milton Keynes in the UK, as an entirely planned city, the chances of actually meeting anyone are remote to nil. It also has the uniue feature in off-peak periods that the best bypass of the city is to drive right through the centre of it. Northbourne Ave is an 8 lane wide boulevarde with a grand median strip down the middle; this serves by roughly cutting the CBD two in half.

To actually find anything useful in the place is impossible. I needed to find ANU yesterday which is just to the west of the hexagon the is London circuit. Notwithstanding the fact that I got sucked onto an expressway and ended up having to double back twice to get where I was going. The other annoying feature is that everything is based on circles and not squares, so in general my sense of direction is thrown out anyway. Another way of saying circle is one glorious hole... which aptly describes this puke of a city.

Andrew Rollason, Canberra - (I always wanted to say that)

November 25, 2005

iFive - 25th Nov

Don McLean's American Pie was one of those songs when originally played on the air had bits cut out to make it fit into playlists. All Around the World by Oasis was 9'02" long on the album but the radio edit was only 4'36". This new Green Day single, Jesus of Suburbia as featured on the album was 9'27" long but somewhere on the radio they've hacked out 6 minutes.
All of this is incredibly difficult to sing along to if you'd only heard the full 9 minute version as I did. The other side is also true, people keep on asking me to play them the album track.

1. Roll With It (live at Wembley) - Oasis
2. Jesus of Suburbia - Green Day
3. I've Been Everywhere - Rolf Harris
4. Don't Stop Moving - S Club 7
5. (Probably) All In The Mind - Oasis

November 23, 2005

I took your baby!

Horse 445 - A Girl's Got To Suffer For Fashion

A friend of mine related to me how when she went through her budget for 2004, she spent $1400 on pantyhose. I find this funny because I still wear the same trousers I wore in high school some 9 years ago.

It must be difficult being a lady, anatomically it's more difficult to buy clothes that fit everywhere whereas blokes are basically built like a set of drainpipes and so everything fits more or less universally.

Then there's the added pressure of keeping up with fashion and the general bitchiness that comes when "you wore that on Tuesday". Also bear in mind that you can't wear what someone else is wearing because that's just awkward.

Blokes on the other hand have a universal office uniform of black trousers, white shirts and a collection of ties. If someone else wore the same outfit then it wouldn't matter squat or if in the event that you're at a party or something, then the chances are if someone wore the same shirt as you, you'd probably be best mates by the end of the night.

You don't have to worry about what shoes go with what outfits, because most blokes only own about three pairs anyway (black ones, runners and maybe specialist sports shoes) and as for handbags, we don't need them as everything should fit into a wallet. The only time a chap is likely to be talking about a "compact" is in reference to a 1.6L motor car.

Last year's fashions tend to be last season's football strip, Accessories is the second point on the barrel of your car's ignition for when you only want to listen to the radio, and haircuts are $30 cheaper.

Perhaps the most stark contrast is the purchase of a new coat. For a lady it may entail the decision as to what else it could go with, do I need a scarf, maybe some new shoes. Whereas if a bloke thinks "I'm cold" he walks into a coat shop, buy a coat, walks out and think "I'm not cold anymore".

November 22, 2005

Horse 444 - A La Peanut Butter Sandwiches!

... said the Amazing Mumford, me thinks he was onto something.

A good indication of my mental state can usually be gleaned by whether or not I can be bothered making a sandwich for lunch, and if I do, how much salad I can be bothered putting on it. And no, jaffles don't count.

Today must be a good day because I even grated a beetroot. I've become quite the fan of the raw beetroot. It interacts with a sandwich's flavour to exactly the same extent that canned beetroot rudely overpowers it.

I also think that I must be one of the only people on earth who actively likes plastic wrapped cheese slices. Cheese is a most wonderful foodstuff that turns even a stinky meat sandwich into something tolerable. I think maybe it's the creamy aspect of cheese that takes the sting out of the acidic spike of stinky meat.

Tomato as a sandwich component is surely a staple but a word of warning. Make sure you get one that's only just turned ripe or by the time you get to work, you'll have a lunch pail of gluggy yukkiness.

Lastly, a sandwich is excellent currency. Not only for the great sandwich swaps of primary school but also if you want to buy a pregnant Leone Subaru L-Series wagon with 4WD and a funky orange button in the stickshift. It will cost you:
A cheese and tomato sandwich with lettuce - GOOD lettuce - ham, chicken and mustard with an olive on top.

There would only be four people in the world who even have a hope of getting the last reference.

*444 was posted on 22/11 ^_^

November 21, 2005

Horse 443 - Shapeshifter

There are some questions in life which have easy answers. Is the sun hot? Is the sea wet? Do you want a biscuit? No thought is required to answer these simple queries.

Other questions require more deliberation. How can we solve poverty in the third world? Were we right to go to war in Iraq? What sort of biscuit would you like? Certainly these are puzzling enigmas.

Yet even these pale in comparison to some questions, questions of such enormity that they will be debated through the ages; wise men will be driven mad by them, wars will be fought over them, and if a definitive answer can ever be found then humanity will enter a new era of glorious enlightenment.

The other day a learned friend posed just such a question to me, and ever since my every waking moment has been caught up in finding the solution. I am approaching an answer, but I feel it is time to pass the question onto you, the greatest minds of the 21st Century, in the hope that you might be able to help me reach a conclusion. And so, to the question: if you could turn into any three animals at will, which three animals would they be?

I hope you understand now why it is I lie awake at nights, feverishly tossing and turning as my mind works ceaselessly to untangle this conundrum. Here is, after many hours of consideration, my answer thus far, but I fear it is far from the perfect solution:

1) Grizzly Bear.
Powers: Strong. Tough. Fuzzy.
I would turn into this shape if ever I got in big trouble, or if someone was in desperate need of an extra large hug.

2) Crow.
Powers: Flappy. Cool looking.
I'd turn into this when I needed to get around in a hurry. I guess any bird would be good for this, but I chose the crow because when they're on the ground they look kind of like big black triangles. I like triangles.

3) Kitten.
Powers: Insufferably cute.
I would use this form to appeal to the ladies. I don't see how this could fail. Mew. Hold me. Closer. Now I want to take a nap. Zzzzz!

November 18, 2005

Horse 441 - Tales From Poo Corner

Warning: Contains Poo Jokes.

I have a confession to make: I don't like taking dumps at other people's houses.
There, I said it.

But even though I don't like doing it, I realise that I can't always predict when nature will call. And when it strikes at an inopportune time, like say, when I'm at your house, I've got to decide whether to use your facilities or, quite literally, suck it up. My decision hinges on a "perceived level of comfort" that I determine through a process that involves something I like to call "calculated risk assessment".

Allow me to explain:
If I get that uncomfortable crapping-soon feeling at your house, the first thing I'll usually do is ask where the bathroom is, "because I have to wash my hands." I may in fact be washing my hands, but I'm also scoping out the goods in the bathroom to see whether or not I want to risk letting it all hang out at your house.

When I'm in your bathroom, here's what I'm checking out:
1. The toilet itself - I usually watch the toilet flush. During this time I observe a number of things. Is this a low-flow toilet? What kind of flushing power does it have?

2. I also take stock of any objects, like knickknacks or tissue boxes, that might be perched on the back of the toilet. In the event that I need quick and immediate access to the internal flushing mechanism, I like to think out in advance what kind of an effort this will require.

3. I look to see if the sink is in close proximity to the toilet. Ideally, I should be able to reach the tap and turn the water on while still seated on the can. This is so I can sporadically turn on the water to mask any splashing noises that might occur while I'm doing my business.

4. This is key to making me feel comfortable enough to crap in your bathroom. The Ceiling Fan provides two essential functions necessary for a stress-free poo. First off, it is a fan that sucks foul odors from the bathroom. Secondly, it makes noise - which can prevent you from hearing the grunting, groaning, farting, and splashing noises that I'm making.

5. I check to see that there is, in fact, toilet paper currently on the roll. Whether the paper comes off the roll "over" or "under" is irrelevant as long as there is ample supply. I might check under the sink, etc. for extra rolls just to make sure I'm on the safe side.
I also don't want to find out mid-poop that you're out of toilet paper. Nor do I want to shuffle across the floor with my pants around my ankles and crack the door so you can hand me an extra roll because I've gone through the current supply. I don't think you want this either.

It's a serious business going to the lav. The job's not over until the paperwork's done.

iFive - 18th Nov

Australia winning qualification to the World Cup in Germany in 2006 is one of the highlights of my overly football obsessed life, and it showed up in this weeks top 5. The Match of the Day theme was heard on BBC1 TV for nearly 40 years before the forces of Rupert's evil at BSkyB bought the rights for £1bn.

Vindaloo by Fat Les on the other hand typifies a lot of football songs - they have really no point and are scarcely about football.

Me, me dad, me gran and me ma'am we're off to Waterloo.
Me, me dad, me gran and me ma'am and a bucket of Vindaloo.
Vindaloo, vindaloo. Vindaloo, vindaloo. Na Nah.
Vindaloo, vindaloo. Vindaloo, vindaloo. Na Nah.
Vindaloo, vindaloo and we all like Vindaloo,
We're gonna score one more than you - England!

Please, if anyone knows what the connection with an Indian curry and football is, then please tell me. I've been wanting to know this for nearly 20 years.

1. Match of the Day - BBC TV
2. Vindaloo - Fat Les
3. Take Me Out - Franz Ferdinand
4. Ride It - Geri Halliwell
5. I'll Be Back (Take 2) - The Beatles

November 17, 2005

Horse 4-4-2 - Pinch me, I must be dreaming.

Que cera cera,
Whatever will be, will be.
We're going to Germany!
Que cera cera.

Wednesday 16th November 2005 will be forever etched into the collective memories of football fans as for the first time in a generation, some 32 years, Australia qualifies for the world cup. The leg which was 0-1 to Uruguay before the match required Australia to score 2 in regulation time for a guaranteed spot - this didn't happen. Marco Bresciano's goal in the 35th minute was the only goal in free play and this led to the dreaded penalty shootout. Mark Schwarzer held onto 2 penalties to give a 4-2 win to Australia in the shootout and all of this was done before 82,698 fans.

With the start of the A-League, admission to the AFC and now qualification to the World Cup, Australian Football's future has never looked brighter. 82,000 tickets were sold last night and this was an over-subscription. Easily 150,000 could have been sold. The noise coming from the "home" end could be heard some 4 miles away; whoever heard of that at a Rugby League match?

Celebrations spilled into the streets, police were utterly helpless to stop thousands of cars honking in triumphant celebration. People were hanging out of car windows, scarves twirled and every flag lofted like standards coming home from a battle. Not since 1983 has a city been so jubilant.Partying was still going on when I drove through the morning peak. People who hadn't gone home the night before were powered by caffiene, adrenaline, alcohol and of course success.

The work of course has only just begun. The tournament proper starts next June and there is still the groups to be decided. Until then, the knowledge that we've simply made it is more than enough to erase 32 years of hurt.

November 16, 2005

Horse 440 - Industrial Relations Australia

BJD in his blog questions which set of propaganda to believe re the Industrial Relations legislation before the house. Whilst I agree with his sentiment that truth lies somewhere between the two, I'm inclined more in the direction of what the Unions are saying but not because I like unions - I'm running with this on the basis of logic and experience based on what I saw pass through the old AIRC. I've also had the chance to read through the 1185 pages of legislation; just to let you know, it's not that exciting and most of it is purely operational.

I have remained very restrained in this blog about the Federal Government's Industrial Relations bill. Personally I think that it's an evil and incidious piece of legislation, designed to remove the ability of regular people to have a say in their employment conditions.

Currently, all workplaces are covered by a series of minimum standards that include: pay conditions, physical conditions, rights to leave loading, penalty rates and holiday pay, long service and superannuation constraints etc. These are covered under an instrument called an award. Awards provide a safety net for all workers, and a fair and level playing field for competing businesses. The Federal Govt. proposes the abolition of nearly 2900 awards nationally and wants to replace them with 16.
I don't see how you can compare work functions across industries myself. Minimum wages will vary according to the type and nature of the work involved.

The replacement of the awards system is by inference the setting up of individual employment agreements, known as Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs). What happens persay if a person who isn't able to negotiate a new AWA effectively for themself. If their command of English or level of education isn't brilliant, unscrupulous employers (yes these do exist) can virtually hand out a cut in pay because they've re-negotiated a new contract.
Power in negotiation without union representation for unskilled workers gets handed to employers, and as business operators it is in their interests (namely profits) to pay as little in a wages bill as possible. It means that employers now have a "take it or leave it" stance on offering employment; the hard fact is that people need to work to be able to pay their own living expenses.

Mr Howard is perfectly correct when he says that it will make Australia more "competitive" but the reason for this is that the biggest single operating expense for most businesses is their wages bill. In a global economy, that wages bill needs to compete with the lower wages of Asia and Africa which over the next 20 years will see a dramatic increase in employment as jobs are exported there. In reality, competitiveness is funded by the working poor of the nation, and borders on exploitation.

I could go into other reasons like the removal of unfair dismissal laws, the removal of checks on agreements to ensure that there's no disadvantage re unfair contract conditions, and the increase of working hours but really because the Govt has control of all 3 levels of government, this legislation will pass on the nose.Add to this the scare campaign that was foisted on us when Mr Howard talked about fining workers over their rights to protest and it's little wonder people are annoyed.

Mr Howard is yet again actively acquiesing to put in place legisation to remove people rights, freedoms, wages and dignity. That's twice in a week, no wonder I have so little faith in the man or the Government he's the leader of.
When can I start calling the man evil? I've got more than enough proof now.

Horse 439 - Mp3 Dilemma

Stealing music is bad, and wrong. There should be a new stronger word for stealing like wrong-bad or bad-wrong or... bad-ong. Yes, stealing music is badong!

I have 3458 tracks on my iPod. Some of these are free subscriptions of Podcasts so aren't stealing. My question is to do with the nearly 600 tracks that aren't music or poscasts. I of course refer to the Adverts and the Radio Promos I have.

No-one in their right mind would sell a CD with old radio adverts and jingles. Who'd honestly but a CD with nothing but ads on? Well the answer is that I would. The way I see it, adverts and jingles are as much of the radio landscape as much as everything else. Who can't forget the Louie The Fly adverts or the Happy Little Vegemites song. And yet, why can't you but these?

Millions of dollars every year are spent on adverts. The MMM guitar riff series was the stations signature for nearly 20 years, and when people hear that in my Ka they often comment that it brings back memories.

Often these things are less than 8 seconds long. As station idents go, they can't afford to be very long, and with adverts, as soon as the product is removed from sale, so are the ads.
So I ask is it wrong to steal and collect something which no-one a) wants to sell and b) would have been discarded anyway? Is it morally right to sift through the audio trash and steal the wrapping?

For the record (pun intended) I hate the concept of iTunes Store. I love walking into a record store and buying that bit of plastic. Artists should be funded I have no problem with that, in fact with a CD you also get artwork so you can find the CD again, but with radio adverts it just doesn't happen.

I like stealing adverts. They're part of my radio experience, and I want to preserve the good ones along with the music they accompany.1224 2WS, Melbourne rocks with 3AW, Triple M nothing but a long shot of rock, Z100 - New York's finest, One Million Watts of Music Power - Radio 1. I grew up with the radio, I want to remember that Happy Happy Sound!

November 15, 2005

Horse 438 - Got To Have The Documents

One thing I learned a long time ago (and although this sounds entirely counter-productive and leads to great piles and swathes of mess) is to never throw away any piece of paper until your sure you don't need it.

At work the problem was solved when I invested in a clean-path scanner which means that I simply scan documents as they arrive and then pitch everything into the recyc, but at home where I don't have that luxury, it means that every envelope and bit of mail no matter how irrelevantly stupid stays in my room. Of course this is a fire hazard and the last time my room ever looked anything remotely in the direction of clean was back in 1997 but it means that I don't lose anything.

Take a dispute over the World Cup qualifiying tickets. Emporer Alpatine had a whinge that I didn't phone him. Because I'd kept the list, not only did I know who I rung but when and even how much I'm still owed. There came an apology in pretty swift time but the fact remains that I can look into the white slime of documents and see exactly what and when something happened.

The problem arises with doodles and newspaper. Do I keep them? Get them mounted? Framed? Dispose of them unthoughtfully in the bin? With taxation and AMEX it's simple. Never open anything until June 28 when you need to compile a tax return.

As Henry Crun muight say "You've got to have the documents you know"
Tomorrow I'll be funny, I sware.

November 13, 2005

Horse 437 - Cooking Programs, Yuk!

What sort of weird sickos have been dredged up to get jobs as TV programmers these days? On any given day as many as 7 hours are completely devoid of any sporting content whatsoever. What has it all been replaced with? Cooking programs! Hours and hours of cooking programs.
You can't turn on the telly without some ponce waving a spatula in your face and asking you to smell his food's fantastic aroma. Well I had a sniff and from where I was sitting all I could smell was a pratt.
Healthy, Wealthy and Tedious. Two Naked Fat Ladies. Rick Nancy's - How to Cook a Gondola. All crap!

And the loony programmers get everything bumside up. One week we get a recipe for Chateux de Sheep which takes a week to prepare and the next we get Delia Smith taking three quarters on an hour telling us how to butter bread.

I've got a bit of advice for TV Programmers and their treating psychiatrists: The next time some mincing chef come to you with an idea for a cullinary journey, tell them to go and jump into the nearest lake. What else do you think the expression "Get Stuffed" is for?

Cooking programs - I tried to think of a more useless TV show and came up with nothing... except for Daryl Somers trying to sing on telly.

November 11, 2005

iFive - 11th Nov

Stolen Bike! Stolen Bike! You have 5 seconds to comply! Stolen Bike! Stolen Bike!
Honestly, who came up with such an absurd device. Merrick & Rosso had an electronic bike alarm on their show which they stole from the Seven Hills Tip. It later went on to great fame in Choice Bro Caravan Park (Where holiday dreams come true).

1. Stolen Bike In Studio - Merrick & Rosso
2. Slide Away - Oasis
3. Good Times - S Club 7
4. Track 2 - John Safran
5. Why Does The Sun Shine - They Might Be Giants

Horse 436 - That It Should Never Happen Again

87 years ago today, the guns fell silent on the Western Front, and the War To End All Wars came to a close. 4 years of slaughter, lives shattered, communities gutted. Never again, people vowed, would nations indulge in such excesses of violence.

But they did. The list of subsequent conflicts makes for depressing reading, though the following is not exhaustive, it does cover most conflicts since 11th November 1918 that involved more than one nation:

Allied Intervention in Russian Civil War (1919 - 1921)
Second World War (1939 - 1945)
Ecuador - Peru Border War (1941)
Madagascar Rebellion (1947)
First Kashmir War (1947 - 1948)
Israeli War of Independence (1948 - 1949)
Korean War (1950 - 1953)
Mau-Mau War (1952 - 1956)
Algerian War of Independence (1954 - 1962)
Suez Campaign (1956)
Lebanese Civil War (1958)
French - Tunisian Clashes (1958)
Dhofar Rebellion in Oman (1960s - 1970s)
Congo Crisis (1960 - 1967)
Cameroon Rebellion (1960 - 1963)
Liberation of Goa (1961)
French - Tunisian Clashes (1961)
Angolan War of Independence (1961 - 1975)
Sino-Indian War (1962)
Eritrean War of Independence (1962 - 1991)
Tutsi Invasion of Rwanda (1963)
Algerian - Moroccan Border War (1963 - 1964)
Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde Islands War of Independence (1963 - 1974)
Vietnam War (1956 - 1975)
Laotian Civil War (1960 - 1975)
Mozambican War of Independence (1964 - 1975)
Somali Border Wars with Ethiopia and Kenya (1964 - 1967)
Tutsi Invasion of Rwanda (1964)
Second Kashmir War (1965)
Dominican Intervention (1965 - 1966)
North Yemen Civil War (1966 - 1968)
Namibian War of Independence (1966 - 1990)
Sino-Indian Skirmish (1967)
Nigerian Civil War (1967 - 1970)
Six Day War (1967)
Jordanian Civil War (1970)
Mercenary Invasion of Guinea (1970)
Cambodian Civil War (1970 - 1975)
Bengali War of Independence (1971)
Yom Kippur War (1973)
Lebanese Civil War (1975 - 1990)
Angolan Civil War (1975 - 2002)
Mozambican Civil War (1975 - 1992)
Saharan War (1975 - Present)
Egypt - Libya War (1977)
Ogaden War (1977 - 1978)
Uganda - Tanzania War (1979)
First Persion Gulf War (1980 - 1988)
Casamance Rebellion in Senegal (1980 - Present)
Ecuador - Peru Border War (1981)
Falklands War (1982)
Israeli Invasion of Lebanon (1982 - 1984)
Grenada Invasion (1983)
Israeli-Lebanese Border War (1984 - 2000)
First Intifada (1987 - 1993)
Panama Invasion (1989)
Sierra Leone Civil War (1990s)
Kashmir Border Conflict (1990 - Present)
Somali Civil War (1990 - Present)
Second Persian Gulf War (1990 - 1991)
Third Balkan War (1991 - Present)
Yemeni Civil War (1994)
Occupation of Haiti (1994 - Present)
Chiapas Uprising (1994 - Present)
Ecuador - Peru Border War (1995)
Yemen - Eritrea Border Conflict (1996)
Zairian - Congolese Civil War (1996 - 1997)
Congo Civil War (1997)
Saudi - Yemen Border Conflict (1998)
Kosovo Conflict (1998)
Congo Civil War (1998 - 2002)
Guinea-Bissau Civil War (1998-1999)
Liberian Civil War (1999)
Second Intifada (2000 - Present)
The War in Afghanistan (2001 - Present)
Third Persian Gulf War (2003 - Present)

Every year, at the cenotaphs and at remembrance services throught the world, the following words are spoken:
They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

And indeed many of us do remember. But how many have learned the lesson written in the blood of slaughtered youth? That war is no solution, but instead creates more problems than it addresses. And where are the memorials to the innocent civilians, the aged, the infirm, the children? People who's deaths are, in too many cases, simply not recorded, subject to estimated casualty figures, described as collateral damage. Yet these are human beings like you and me, people who think and feel, who hurt and can be hurt. And we don't even accord them the smallest dignity of recording their passing.

Bombs and Guns do not discriminate who they kill, be they soldier, civilian rich or poor.
I can't help but think that it's all a bloody waste.

November 10, 2005

Horse 435 - Hold Me Now Fovever (and don't tell me why)

Happy Birthday to Me. Well almost not really.

Ich vielen Dank war Fräulein Stolle, es es nicht für Sie dann niemand hätte sich erinnert an überhaupt. Mein Geburtstag ist mit keiner Fanfare und außer einem entzückenden Päckchen im Posten gekommen, der von fast unbemerkt vorbeigegangen an wird.

Now then.

Dictatorship: Rule by a process, person or entity in irresponsible authority. Power absolute and free from checks.

Over the course of the 20th Century "civilised" nations learnt that Dictatorships were subject to abuse of power and were a bad thing that should be stopped or curbed. The worst kinds were seen as fascists, communists and despots. Can this be applied to the Liberal Party in our own Federal Parliment? I most equivocably answer YES.

It has an absolute majority in both houses which it attained more by good luck than actual will of the people and is currently exercising its powers to create laws which would have been considered dangerous.

Think about this taken from the Anti-Terrorism Bil 2005 already passed by the Reps:
104.4 Control Orders (cont)
(1)If the Commonwealth makes a Control Order subject to withold or detain a person the order must:
(d)specify the period for which the control order is in force, which must not end more than 12 months after the issue date of the control order.
(2)Paragraph(1)(d) does not prevent the making of successive order in relation to the same person.

Effectively the powers for Control Orders are held by the Depts of Defence, ASIO and the JIO. A Control Order is handed down separate from the courts and as such has a different legal definition. A Commonwealth Control Order holds the same legal instructional value as a judge made order.

If ASIO makes an order to "detain" someone then because ASIO is governed under the Official Public Secrets Act they aren't required to tell the person why they have detained them. Furthermore, because it's a Control Order and not a Charge there are no rights to apply for bail. Also because it isn't a charge, there aren't any charges to answer, so legal representation (provided you could actually contact a lawyer, and then assuming they were even allowed to know where you were because you're being held under the Official Public Secrets Act) is pretty well much useless.

Part 2 of Section 104 also states that sucessive Control Orders can be made on the same person. This means effectively that someone could be held indefinately without knowing the reasons why. Is this any different to say what's going on in Guantanamo Bay? If you hold someone without telling them why and without a timeframe, is it any different to imprisonment? Even convicted criminals have some idea when they will be free. This may result in perfectly innocent people being locked up - I wouldn't put it past corrupt people in power.

I used to be mistrustful of our goverment; now I'm downright fearful. Evil evil things are being done within the walls of that place, and the quesion that was once posed of whether Mr Howard is a Christian or not is quite frankly irrelvant. He is actively acquiesing to put in place legisation to remove people rights, freedoms, wages and dignity.

I still call Australia home but I am now officially ASHAMED of this country.

Horse 434 - Irn-Bru

For the first time ever I saw Barr's Irn-Bru on sale at Woolworths last night. Irn-Bru! Oh joy joy happy day. Irn-Bru is one of those curious drinks which manages to hold off the evil ravages of Coca-Cola in its native Scotland. Unlike most countries, it is not Coca-Cola that is the most popular soft drink but Irn-Bru that holds nearly 60% of the market. In fact when McDonald's set up stores in Glasgow, people boycotted them until Irn-Bru was on sale.

So what is it?

Roughly speaking it's made from Orange rind and other bonus bits. The bizarre almost radioactive orange colour is said to come from the iron in the drink, hence the name Irn-Bru (Iron Brew). There's so much iron in fact that there's a stain warning on the bottle and the company slogan used to be "made from girders".

Being caffienated it's said to be a cure for hangovers. Actually the caffiene in it prohibits sale in Canada because the laws allow only caffiene in dark coloured drink. One of the colours Rondeau 4A is prohibited by the United States' FDA, so any stock that does find it's way into North America does so ex Mexico.

I think it tastes similar to JAL Skytime or L&P (which is world famous in NZ) but that iron gives it almost a hint of the taste of rust.

So cheers to Irn-Bru. That stain ring it leaves on your coffee table from the bottom of the glass is a ring of no confidence.

November 09, 2005

Horse 433 - My Musical Bubble

I must admit I am guilty to a degree of neglecting the television and being somewhat of a bookish, prudish, nerd. One thing that this has allowed me to do over the years apart from build up a degree of culture from the printed word (me with culture? Get out of the city!), but also I've developed a very very big internal music library.

This was evidenced on Sunday night when a bunch of us went to the Chensee's after church and a few rounds of the musical quiz "Buzz" were played on PS2; on which I kicked butt up and down and then back up the street.

Anyway, to the story at hand:
Helen Lovejoy, beautiful heiress to the Halibut millions, has been jilted at the altar by Villion de Paprikon, son of Louis XIV. Peter, Villion’s Eton boating friend, has heard this, but being in Tibet has embarrassed Mary, his fiancée, who being the only cousin of Sir Ray Ellington has past the title on to Baron Geldray, also heir to the Halibut millions. Now read on.

I went into the backyard with my iPod (the replacement Gipsy, not Mintie - Mintie died) and because it was a nice night lay on the grass staring up at the sky watching the stars go by. It was then that I noticed two things:

1. The number of stars in the sky seems to have decreased by a factor of 10 since I was a kid. Pollution, extra lights and possibly because I don't have the eyesight of a 9 year old anymore, mean that the night sky is but a poor parody of what I remember.

2. I really like Mussorgsky.
If you remember Mitsubishi's "Please Consider" adverts from about 10 years ago then you'll may recall the brass thing in the background. This was "Promenade" from this suite. This bit is returned to in about 6 different keys throughout the suite. Apparantly the story is that some guy walks about an art gallery and looks at paintings, returning to some as he randomly wanders.
I think that the concept is a good one and it's one of the few pieces of Russian music I find tolerable - having said that it plays around with all sort of tempo, key and even meter within the same phrase.

With the sky spinning above and the music wafting below a good nigh was had by moi.

November 07, 2005


Cup Noodle - from Nissin

There is no pot noodle in the world that can even hold a candle to Nissin Cup Noodles. Pot Noodle brand pot noodle has a nice sludge to it, and Fantastic Noodles just aren't. Whilst Sui-Min are nice for about 4 minutes, they very quickly turn into a salty mess and Maggi... don't go there.

Hungry?! Cup Noodle - from Nissin

The only course of action left at this point is to find some eel, spicy dumplings, extra extra extra hot sludgy curry and some Yebisu Lager. I bet that'll be utter brilliance.

Horse 432 - Doormat Wins!

Back in Horse 422 the following comment was made:

Anonymous said...
You have no right to complain if you're lonely or not. It's your job to stand at the back of the parade.Get over yourself, act like the servant you're supposed to be, shut up and if nobody cares about you so what?
It's not about you.

Whilst people defended me, I thought about this a bit. The comment sounded almost vaugely familiar, as though through utter callousness there was a lesson to be learnt here. Standing at the back of the parade eh? This warranted further investigation...

"For it seems to me that God has put us apostles on display at the end of the procession, like men condemned to die in the arena. We have been made a spectacle to the whole universe, to angels as well as to men." - 1 Corinthians 4:9

But this was directed at a group of people who thought they'd made it, it doesn't connect up entirely well with the concept of being a servant does it? It almost looks like a hack attack out of context.

"Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." - Mark 10:43-45

What does this suggest? Your comments seem to beg the question by inference that as Christians, are we called to be doormats? I would wager "Yes".

How horrid is the idea of a doormat? You literally can't get any lower than a doormat, it lies on the floor. A doormat takes wet shoes, big shoes, shoes with dog poo on, clean shoes... it never avoids any of this.

If we try to serve others based on our feelings of love for people and their willingness to love us back, we have set ourselves up for failure. We will fail because people are ungrateful. Ingratitude is so prevalent today but then, ingratitude has been around for a long time. Remember the ten lepers? Nine failed to show their appreciation for the fact that they'd been healed and only one could be bothered to say Thank You

We are called to serve others based on our love for the Lord. We need to constantly remember everything the Lord has done for us. Our service to others should be based on our gratitude for all the Lord has done for us.

The concept of service being equated with greatness seemed completely upside down to the disciples. It was a perspective that went against the grain, against common sense, against the prevailing world opinion; and it still does. Our world today may regard servants as heroes, but generally only in isolated circumstances and situations.
If a person engages in servanthood all the time, and especially if he or she is a servant at heart in all situations to all people, that person is considered to be a wimp, a chump, a doormat, a nothing, or a nobody. Or, in some cases, such a servant is considered a living saint, but usually by people who don't remotely think sainthood is possible for all people or who believe that service is to become the way of life for all Christians.

So yes, it isn't about me at all. It should be about other people because I have been commanded to serve. But I do have a question in passing...
Who are you that doesn't have the decency to sign their name? Despite this attack, I may just have been taught something. God still wins - the King has the last move - check and mate.

November 05, 2005

Horse 431 - Fame vs Fortune

The reason I even got around to thinking about this and having a rather interesting discussion on the subject was to do with the trainer of Makybe Diva, David Hall, who has subsequently moved to Hong Kong where the amount of money on offer is greater than anywhere else in the world.

So which is it?

Does achieving notoriety show up poor self esteem? Would someone want to be remembered like Issac Newton or Adolf Hitler? Fame is one of those things which is painted after some great achievement be it noble or nasty.

Would be it be preferable to have on one's grave stone:
Here Lies X, discoverer of the cure of cancer.
Here Lies X, nobody knew him, but wasn't he rich?

It's true that usually very rich people are often in positions of influence anyway, and thus will naturally be able to affect the course of history. Then there are those exceptions like the case of a Patents Officer in Salzburg whose ideas changed the world.

Fame v Fortune - since I'll probably get neither, there is only one course of action I can conceivably see at this point. That is how how lives do you affect for eternity? Whilst I may never be ultra-rich or mega-famous, if I can do my bit in saving people from a place where both fame & fortune counts for squat, then I will have lived a life worthwhile.

It's not ironic at all that the most famous person ever to walk on planet earth was placed into a situation of no fame and no riches. The son of a chippy doesn't instill any sense of pride at all. It still doesn't change the fact that the kid born in a shed was decended from the richest being of the universe (because He owns all of it) and eventually became the most famous person in history.

All the fame and fortune in the world are worth squat in comparison to Christ. Why bother storing treasure that will crack, warp, split, fade, burn, and get mouldy? And within two generations the earth won't remember who I am anyway. I'll be little more than a few lines in a book or a headstone. Christ fame, fortune, power and riches endure forever.

So is it fame, fortune or neither?

November 03, 2005

Horse 430 - News Grabs

Makybe Diva has won the Melbourne Cup for the third sucessive time and the media has fawned over itself in praise for the mare and in doind so has run out of superlatives. Banties of "the greatest" and "as good as Phar Lap" have been thrown around in an effort to impress the public that this is a once in a lifetime event.
The most normal thing that the media would do for a lady such as this is a front page spread on the newspapers and then comes the endless stream of other magazine reports. There'll be a report on Makybe Diva's home tips in Better Homes and Gardens; a photo shoot where the horse will be clad in not much for the men's magazines. Diet magazines will run stories telling you how to "eat like a horse". The historical pages will compare the mare to other great horse in history like Pegasus, the Wooden Horse of Troy, Mr Ed even; and finally when the whole things settles down and the horse is sent to stud, there will be a report in OK! magazine from a jilted lover and possibly an affair with another stallion.

Sydney's traffic was thrown into utter chaos when a hole appeared in the construction of the Lane Cove Tunnel. The hole appeared underneath an apartment block on Longueville Rd and about 1000 cubic meters gave way. A bottom floor apartment has already collapsed into the hole which renders the building structurally useless.
What's worrying for the tunnel builders and future operators isn't the fact that the area is composed of strata of shale and my be liable to collapse in future but the even more worrying prospect that the building does not have an E-Tag. That's $3.83 that the operators won't be getting for the building using the tunnel!
On the other hand the hole is just sick for any rubbish you may want to hurl down, it especially likes cane furniture I've been told.

November 02, 2005

Horse 429 - More Pre-Doodling

What happens when you leave me in a office for too long with very very little to do? For a start I tend to go insane and then second I start to scribble. Today I achieved something which I'm very very proud of and took about 5 hours of work. First you'll need to look at the original:

Not incredibly impressive by all acounts is it?

One thing I'm currently working on is a graphic novel for my own devious purposes. An important element of any story be it prose, TV, radio, film, or in this case graphic novel is that part known as setting. The visual media make it easy to show these sorts of things but unlike TV or film, if you're going to draw everything, you have to... draw everything.

This is all good and proper if you want to do things from scratch, but I just didn't have the imagination to invent whole worlds. On the other hand, to copy detail to the n/100th degree is rather time consuming and I may be forced to rethink this so that I can take on the task at hand. In the meantime I'll use the salami method - ie slice by slice.

This then is the drawn product... you'll need to follow the link.
Church Picture
If all goes according to plan, I should have something remotely workable by Nov 30... if I don't go mad first.

October 31, 2005

Horse 428 - Global Warming II

In Horse 383 I had rather a tongue in cheek jib about global warming, it turns out that there are some really bizarre side effects.

1. Britain and France actually get colder because of Global Warming.
Yes, this is true. I'm not lying at all and there's statistical proof now as well. To explain this you'll need to know about one of the basic laws of physics.

Where you have a potential difference in energy, energy will flow from the state of high potential to the positional state of low potential. You can see this by the operation of a battery, eventually the two sides of the battery will possess the same potential and whilst the battery isn't "used up", energy can't flow any more and is useless. Likewise heat will flow from a hot place into a less hot place (what is inaccurately called cold), thus when you open a fridge, you're not actually letting out the cold but letting in the heat.

As the planet heats up, the difference between the poles and the equator is actually becoming less and therefore the amount of energy flow from the equator should slow down. Now then, the biggest energy transfer system in the world is a sea current that runs from the Carribean across the Alantic called the Gulf Stream. This moves at between 2-4 knots typically and dumps warm water in the North Sea near Britain and France.

Think about it, if that flow slows down (which it is doing), then the heat transfer from the equator is becoming less. Unfortunately, the overall daytime temperatures in both France and Britain are experiencing less of a boost from the transfer of heat, so average daylight temperatures are actually falling slowly as a direct result of Global Warming. Daft eh?

2. People are profiting from Global Warming.
If you take a glass of and fill it with ice cubes, then fill it to the brim with whiskey (whiskey has a freezing point of -5°C so is perfect for this experiment) and then go outside to the shops or maybe K-Mart or whatever it is that you do and forget that you've left the experiment, the ice melts.
When you come back you'll see that the amount of volume displaced by the ice is actually more than the liquid water formed and the levels in the glass (even after accounting for evaporation) actually fall.

There are people alive right now who will for the first time in recorded human history actually see a summer when the Arctic ice caps will melt entirely. This is of course extremely useful.
As the polar ice caps melt, they free up transport routes across the North Pole. It becomes possible to move ships from places like Norway and Canada right across the top of the world. A shipping route from Amsterdam to Tokyo which currently goes via the Mediterranean and the Suez canal et al. would simply scoot across the top; reducing travel times from 27 to just 8 days.

In fact Pat Broe who owns a bunch of US railways, bought the previously semi-frozen sub-Arctic Canadian port of Churchill, Manitoba, in 1997, for just $7US. 7 bucks bought this guy something that's potenially worth millions and millions.Currently there's a land rush going on for ports in Russia as well as Scandanavia to cash in on the potential of transport opportunities.

... and people thought Noah was stark raving bonkers for building a great big boat in the middle of nowhere. I'd say he was an estute businessman.

Horse 427 - The Little Words

One of the distinct character traits I have apart from an immense competitive streak comes a certain degree of perfectionism. When I do my job at work, I like everything to be done as quickly and accurately as possible; when I'm working with manual tasks, I like edges to be straight and true and finishes to be as exact as possible; finally if I do an exam, a pass grade is never enough, 98% correct in my opinion is still 2% wrong.

Imagine therefore what happens to me in those areas where there aren't any exact standards, when simply doing my best either isn't good enough or in some cases where my best is over and above what is required. I often am driven to re-think things again and again.
A consequence of this is me thinking things out to the very very end; to be honest some outcomes for things scare me immensly, and I will admit to not attempting some things for fear that one day they may end or worse break.

Tonight I drove someone home from a football match and was thanked but told that I had a "kind heart". This floored me. I do not accept praise for anything easily, criticism I find very easy to deal with because this gives me something I can work on or with, but tonights statement left me with no path out except to say thankyou.

I felt utterly helpless to be appreciated, it's such a strange occurance that quite frankly I don't know what to do about it. It's one of the biggest fears that I have actually, that someone notices that I've done something for them. Grant that I do quite a bit for other people, but when they start thanking me for it, what the heck am I supposed to do then??

The big hard nasty words require action but it's the little kind words I find the most difficult to deal with.

October 28, 2005

Horse 426 - Wisdom of the Council

I read with much hillarity in the great bastian of truth and nobility the Illawarra Mercury that Caboolture Shire Council has ordered that one man should make certain alterations to a fence that he has erected.

The fence at nearly 30 miles long had been put up to stop feral cats and foxes from getting into the National Park; this seems resonable enough. Caboolture Shire Council handed down the decision, that this chap should cut holes in the fence at regular intervals to allow the passage of kangaroos.
Forgive my application of logic here, but I think you'll find that kangaroos are in fact a great deal bigger than a feral moggy. If you cut holes in the fence to let kangaroos in, a cat isn't going to stop and think "I shouldn't go in there, that's a kangaroo hole; not a cat hole" are they?

Elsewhere, Mosman Municipal Council has put up a fence around a children's playground to stop big dogs from coming and harrassing young kiddies. Sounds good in theory, except that the fence only goes around two sides of a four sided playground. Again, are they thinking that dogs won't venture around the ends of the fence because it's against council regulations?

I often wonder the logic of Holroyd Municipal Council who proudly declare themseleves as a Nuclear-Free Zone. Does this mean to say that the nearby councils mysteriously have nuclear reactors in them? Perhaps Holroyd is proud that they have disarmed themselves of their nuclear arsenal. Seriously I think that the only Inspectors that you're likely to see in Holroyd are of the parking variety.

Then there are countless councils all over Sydney who think that local streets are best served by turning them into motocross arenas by erecting speedhumps, chicanes and roundabouts all over the place in the name of traffic calming. Parramatta City Council made potentially a fatal error by placing a whole swag of these around the immediate environs of Westmead Hospital, thus increasing ambulance travel and response times and giving sick people a very very bumpy ride.

But the prize for an utterly stupid civil ordinance sign has to go to Sydney City Council who have erected a "No Swimming" sign on a fountain in Martin Place. This fountain is different than most because it's basically a series of jet nozzles in the pavement that every 15 minutes spray a wall of mist into the air.
How does one a) go swimming in the pavement or b) go swimming in the mist hanging in the air? The sign has obviously been placed to comply with a directive that all fountains should bear adequate warning signs, but really the worst I've ever seen from this is someone sneezing because they got a wee bit cold.

What's next? Warnings on coffee because it's too hot... hang on... hmm.

iFive - 28th Oct

When X&Y came out everyone was blown away by the hype that went with it but then as you get into the album it gradually looks like this is not the classic that it was painted as.
Franz Ferdinand's second delivery is no different than their first, almost literally. It's basically seamless between the two albums. The thing is that where in most cases this would be a bad thing, with Franz Ferdinand, they're still thumping out a dozen decent tracks. Scotland never sounded better. This is destined to be part of the soundtrack of 2006 I'm sure of it.

1. Loves Me Not - Tatu
2. Falling - Franz Ferdinand
3. Carry On - Taxiride
4. Om - Smeg and the Heads
5. The Typewriter - Leroy Anderson

Horse 425 - Lies, Half-Truths, Truths and Untruths

In BJD's Divulge which goes up every Friday, we are given the opportunity to answer 5 questions. One of this week's question was particularly interesting.

Is it right or wrong to tell lies to make people feel better?
to which I answered:
It's not helpful to tell lies, even if the truth hurts.

This led me thinking this morning about that most grevious of questions, namely "Does my bum look big in this?"

Two principles I consider core:
1. The old "Do not bear false witness against your neighbour" line. Any distortion of the truth (direct lie or omission) which is designed to paint an misleading perception of another is out. Some people tell a lot of lies by only telling part of the story.

2. Does omitting part of the truth give me an unfair advantage over the other person? There are times I may wish to ommit detail from a response either to protect my privacy or to avoid unnecessary hurt to another (maybe to save my skin). Questions like "What are you thinking?" or "Does my bum look big in this?" are ones which often require a less than full and honest answer.

Consider another question from this set:
"Is it right or wrong to do 10% over the speed limit?"
I might choose not to seek out the police to report myself if I notice that I have exceeded the speed limit but will answer honestly if stopped and asked.

This sounds kind of messy. It is not a defence of dishonesty, it is an attempt to have a framework for honesty which allows for privacy and avoids unnecessary hurt without allowing any space for dishonesty for the sake of personal advantage.

"Does my bum look big in this?"
Life would all be easier if people did not ask some of those questions.

October 26, 2005

Horse 424 - She Needs A Name

No seriously.

I have no idea at this stage, but at some point in the future once I get over the scaling issues, get some photography done, maybe even do some decent inking etc etc etc - somewhere on the WWW will be my very own webcomic.

Like so many before it, it may or may not be doomed to failure. I only hope that the 90 odd pages of story I written and the strength of elements like character should be able to eliminate all the various problems with lack of drawing talent.

I don't see drawing as a means to itself, rather the vehicle by which I can tell a story. Oh don't worry, if you see little pieces of yourselves melded into the lives of my characters who dance the presidium arch then don't feel bad. It's art imitating life... well not quite.

I'm just feeling grandiose