Tram Town
Monday, October 31, 2005

Just around the corner in Lever Street. My mum will tell me what sort of flower it is. I think the overhanging tree is a Japanese Maple.
This gives some idea of the quality of the image from my new phone. Not that hot but probably good enough for emergency blogging.

Category: iSung
It appears that Samsung would like a share of Apple's digital media player market and they have held a press conference to explain how they are going to get it. Byt the time the article was written for the Korea Times and then translated by an amateur enthusiast for English idiom it contains some gems of Engrish such as:
iTunes is a famous application
But Apple single-handedly dominates the global market with its iPod family, which store media on built-in hard disk drive (HDD) with some exceptions.
It doesn't hurt to put a few exceptions on the hard disk along with the media, there's plenty of space, after all.
Now the biggest storage-incorporated model available is a 60GB item.
The next one may even be regular usage but it sounds wrong somehow:
Samsung has now caught wind of the global trend and jumped onto the HDD bandwagon.
And, finally, this extraordinary feat
During the press conference, Samsung also unveiled its research and development center for digital products for the first time, a mammoth 36-story building in Suwon, Kyonggi Province.
That's one hell of a veil and imagine the crane.

It's an interesting article overall but I don't like Samsung's chances of achieving its goal:
Samsung announced earlier this year it will catch up with Apple and become one of three leading MP3 player manufacturers in 2007 by securing a 25-30 percent global market share
iPod purchase has more to do with the heart than the mind and Jobsy has his users' hearts bound and gagged.

Sunday, October 30, 2005
Category: Quotes
Marion Barry is a former mayor of Washington D.C. He has said some very strange things over time [more here]. My favourite:
"I promise you a police car on every sidewalk."
The use of the name Marion, by the way, is as per this man's birthname.

Saturday, October 29, 2005
Category: Technology
I have a few problems with this, but found it a "read" none the less". (Really, not necessarily a "good" read").

Category: Advertising
Hmmm, more balls than something that's got lots of balls! (FWIW, I've walked down this street a coupla' times, never walked up but (smoker))

Category: Technology
Guess what has just had its' 34th. birthday?
E-Mail! Interesting article on this and the thinking behind gMail.

Hmmm, don't think I'll take this mp3 player on my next plane flight.

Friday, October 28, 2005
Category: Food
I'm here at the moment. Have been for a coupla' days. I just ordered Room Service (wood-fire pizza FWIW) and didn't get Fries, Salad or Condiments! That's Fantastic! Go Them! (pizza was OK too, added bonus).

It took two journalists, Michael Warner and Ellen Whinnett, to report on this high-rise mobile phone that might be built in Melbourne by "Crazy" John Ilhan. Crazy John is quoted as saying "Every country has a building of some sort. Sydney has got the Opera House -- why not this for Melbourne?". That would appear to be a little bit geographically silly but it also ignores the fact that Santiago in Chile already has a mobile phone building. Have a look at this slide set by repeatedly clicking on the right arrow at the top right of the picture.

Category: Music/Culture
Nice article on Bo Rhap, 30 years on.

Category: Space TFF
Hmm this looks worth a look but I haven't actually looked yet as it doesn't seem to be available on the recessive platform.

Category: Politics
I'm apparently a Nationals man but you could have fooled me.

Category: Pigs
There's a typically good article by James Lileks here about, amongst other things, a school banning Charlotte's Web because it has a pig and, thus, might offend some muslims.

See! I said I was bolshie. Thanks to that Brain gal.

Thursday, October 27, 2005
Category: Horses
For those of us with broadband this might be useful.

Category: Melbourne
I too am sad that DBH is leaving us. But, I do take issue with Semi. I believe that JR & JC were performing at the Concert Hall rather than DBH. For my money, I saw Ariel, Split Enz, Captain Matchbox and a few other bands there (and possibly Whitlam). It was one of my two favourite venues. (the other being the Concert Hall).

Category: Melbourne
Many of us are very sad to see that the Dallas Brooks Hall is to be pulled down and replaced with an office/apartment building. Google is shows a surprising paucity of information on this magnificent concert venue, this exception would have been a must see had I been a few years older.
I have some very specific memories including Aunty Jack and the Gong in Bloody Concert for which I still have the program. My parents took me and it was an extra night at the end of a run and cost $2 per person entry! My parents and I were both the oldest and youngest people there. I reckon I learnt a bit about theatre from that show. Thanks mum (and dad if he were still here).
A few years later the Phlorescent Leach and Eddie toured and I went to that with Gus Till (i'm guessing 1975). My father was there to pick us up and came in for the end of the concert and was dissappointed that they used "language".
Quite a few years later we saw Jonathon Richman play the first half of a double act with John Cale. To DB's disgust, three of us left after the first half.
About six years ago I dropped my wife and two boys off to see the Wiggles. It may have been enjoyable for the boys but my wife's opinion of the theatrical skills of the Wiggles was not repeatable.
It's a lovely place and I hope they have a few farewell concerts before it is pulled down.

Category: Reader
I've been looking for a RSS reader and didn't realise that Google has a perfectly good offering. Now here's surprise: it's a beta product!

Category: Apple/mp3
Everything you wanted to know about the Australian iTunes music store but were afraid to ask.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Category: Apple/RDC
As Semi surely knows, amongst others, I lean slightly towards the "bolshie" side. But I thought this was nice. (time limited I suspect)

Category: Radio One (the station formerly known as 3LO)
Lindy Woods, replacement for Triolli,V. on Drive, just used the phrase "in the foreseeable past". What does that mean?

Category: Office
We've heard some horror stories over the years concerning information left in Word files after it has been edited out of the document proper. In this case the whole world is getting to look at some draft details on allegations surrounding the murder of Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese Prime Minister.
The United Nations: PDF is not our middle name.
Another story courtesy of James Taranto's Best of the Web.
Last week we noted an Associated Press report that Secretary-General Kofi Annan had said that "he is determined to keep an upcoming report into the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri from fanning tensions between Syria and Lebanon." Thanks to Bill Gates, now we know how far Annan was willing to go to protect the Syrian dictatorship.

Category: Space TFF
Elevator, Going Up! (not).

Category: RIP
Rosa Parks will be long remembered:
Rosa Louise Parks (February 4, 1913 – October 24, 2005) was an African American seamstress and figure in the American Civil Rights Movement, most famous for her refusal in 1955 to give up a bus seat to a white man when ordered to do so by the bus driver.
And yet Teddy Kennedy said:
Sen. Edward Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat, said in a statement: "The nation lost a courageous woman and a true American hero. A half century ago, Rosa Parks stood up not only for herself, but for generations upon generations of Americans."
Had she stood up we might be living in a different world today, Bridge-Boy.

Thanks to James Taranto's Best of the Web for that glib observation.

Category: Words
Feta cheese is no longer feta cheese unless it is made in Greece according to the European Court of Justice. Funny sort of justice if you ask me. Maybe we should take the lead of the Kiwis and call it fita.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Category: Web
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad,World. (hint: hover over a cover)

Category: Food
Miranda Devine, as usual, is very sensible about an issue...
Monica Trapaga, singer, entertainer, former ABC Play School presenter, mother of two and all-round nice person, has suddenly become the bete noir of the fascist food movement.
Yes Monica! She has made an advertisement for Coco Pops™. In the eyes of the food nazis, she couldn't be more evil if she was a White Male Heterosexual™.
The Parents Jury issued a media release last week about the Coco Pops ad, quoting angry unnamed parents.
"My opinion of Kellogg's and Monica Trapaga has taken a nosedive," says one.
"I was incensed when I saw the ad with Monica and Coco Pops . . . Of course any child seeing Monica say it's good to eat Coco Pops is going to think that it is OK," says another.
"I am disappointed in her [Monica] as she has achieved a lot in the entertainment of children . . . yet now she is not showing the same regard to their health," says another.
You may wonder at Miranda's skill in the apostrophe department but the "Parents Jury" opts to punctuate itself thus. We've pointed at them before and they still have children on their homepage consuming vast amounts of sugar in the form of watermelon. Just think how much fructose (which converts gram for gram, near enough, to glucose or sucrose) those kids are going to eat in the name of good health!
And then there's this "Duh!" moment:
Salt levels in bacon twice as high as seawater
Daily Mail ( UK )
It may look more appetising than seawater. But having a bacon sandwich for breakfast is hardly better for your health.
A study has found that, gram for gram, bacon contains twice as much salt as the Atlantic Ocean.
Look at that disgusting piece of journalism: "twice as much salt as the Atlantic Ocean". How do they mean that to be read? And who thought that a bacon sandwich was a great piece of nutrition right there? We all know that a bit of bacon for breakfast, like MOST foods is a treat to be had occasionally. To quote Pete Townsend "Too Much of Anything is too much for me".
What really irritates me is the name of the organisation. Not for them the honest if a bit bland "Concerned Parents for Good Nutrition". No, these second-quartile intellect university graduates decide they can represent all of us. This is hubris at best and more likely presumptuous arrogance.

Every time these thickhead Parent's Jury [deliberate apostrophisation] goons think about putting out a press release they should consult the Man on the Clapham Omnibus for a healthy dose of common sense.

Category: Apple
Local iTunes Music Store is live. Can't find a link yet but just open iTunes and you can shop @ $1.69 per track. Apparently official announcement will be made around 9:00am.
UPDATE: Coles is selling pre-paid and Apple's now gone public.

Category: Photography
I'm probably the last person to find the Digital Photography Review website so this post is probably redundant. It is an absolute cracker and it speaks fairly highly of my new camera (of which I have become very fond).

Category: RDC
Frank Wilson has gone. When I was a kid I thought he was a particularly unattractive man for a telvision gig. This at a time when GK was on top. Still, he could act.

Monday, October 24, 2005
Category: Apple
CUPERTINO, CALIF. (Imaginary News Service)—After holding two press events in as many weeks to introduce the video iPod, refurbished iMac, dual-core Power Mac, and Aperture image-editing software, Apple announced it was not scheduling a special event next week to unveil new products.

Category: Engineering
A pictorial study of some of Europe's sewers.

Category: Humour (of the childish type)
The Uncyclopedia: the content-free encyclopedia that anyone can edit.

I discovered this while wandering around on the BJAODN page on Wikipedia where they maintain an interesting and often stupid list of "Bad Jokes and Other Deleted Nonsense".
Also from BJAODN...
Legend also has it, that in the time of early primitive man, before paper or scissors were invented, the play was always rock, thus inevitably a tie. [Read on...]

Sunday, October 23, 2005
Category: Web
Someone has set the All Your Base Are Belong To Us stuff to music.
I reckon it's worth a look. (in fact, I quite liked it (and so did Beth)) FWIW.

Category: Engineering
Matt Keveney has a terrific site with animations of a wide variety of engines. I had never really quite understood Stirling engines until I was referred to Matt's site by the Wikipedia.
Matt does not appear to have updated the site since 2001 but he doesn't need to, it's all there and beautiful.
I am particularly inspired by the differing lengths of the compression and exhaust strokes in the Atkinson engine.
UPDATE: [following a thoughtful shower] It's worth noting that when people use the term Atkinson cycle they are usually not referring to the Atkinson engine. As employed by Toyota and Ford in their hybrid vehicles, the Atkinson cycle entails leaving the inlet valve open for a proportion of the compression stroke so that some of the fuel/air mixture is pushed back into the inlet manifold. The effect of this is much the same as in the Atkinson engine with more of the energy released in the power stroke being applied to the drive shaft rather than disappearing into the exhaust as heat.
It's almost like the opposite of a turbo with respective effects on efficiency.
I guess one of the advantages of using this technique is that, when raw oomph is required, the valve timing could be altered on-the-fly. Now I've really scared off most of our readers.

Saturday, October 22, 2005
Category: Apple/mp3
(again) Purely for the sake of completeness, Apple will release ITMS next Tuesday (or not).
Oh, and HSV may release some of their rubbish for the new (video) iPod.

Category: World Peace
I hadn't previously come across the Golden Arches Theory of Conflict Prevention before.
Ofcourse, some people think it's Rubbish and other folks have some other stuff to say. I found it interesting, your mileage may not be as good.

Friday, October 21, 2005
Category: Important safety tip
THE TV remote control carries more germs than the bathroom door, a US study has found.
Thanks, Egon.
We have way too many scientists in this world.

Thursday, October 20, 2005
Category: Technology
Auffers (again) has an interesting analysis on the Fruit Company here. (FWIW I don't like Jobs and never have).
You might have to scoll down a bit to the "How Apple Does It" article as I couldn't find a PermaLink (and Mark needs either an editor or a spell check)

Category: Trivia
Our friend Auffers pointed me to a lovely entry that, probably, no one else would care about except me -- Heck! It amused me.

Category: Snakes (again)
Slatts has pointed us at a snake-in-the-outhouse story that I didn't really want to hear.

Category: Dots
Now I thought we'd all known about this for a long time. It seems that the spooks requested that accurate colour printers have identifying watermarks placed into their printed images. This is so that forgeries can be tracked. The most interesting part of this article is that the EFF has cracked the code.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Category: eBay
It appears that residents of North Dakota who want to use eBay are going to have to learn to speak quickly because they are auctioneeers. Glenn Reynolds observes on Tech Central Station:
It's easy to make fun of this kind of thing, and people are. One blogger observes: "Soon enough, governments will force these guys to wear a suit and tie in front of their personal computers."
But even though North Dakota's proposal is being targeted for mockery, it's also being targeted for emulation, as quite a few other states are considering similar proposals. This seems like a dreadful idea to me.
It looks like a dreadful idea to me too, Glenn. If it gets up, how long will it last?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005
Category: Trams
On The Lawyers show this morning he was poo-pooing the Danish Baby Gift. He copped much flack from Tram Enthusiasts (isn't everyone?) including this mob. I'm gonna drag the girls up there real soon.

Category: Reptiles
Kev Gillett has an interesting little article about snakes. Well worth the read.

Category: Hire ejacashun
What an amazing sacrifice:
There were too few well-off business people prepared to slash their salary to "give back to society" and work in universities, he said.
Mr Hilmer, 60, chief executive officer of John Fairfax Holdings for seven years, starts as vice-chancellor next June on a $750,000 annual salary package.
He leaves Fairfax, publisher of the Herald, next month with a $4.5 million retirement allowance on top of a $1.5 million salary for the year to June.
You could barely afford your weekly supermarket bills on $750k, could you?

Category: Meeja
Slatts has pointed out what he has declared to be headline of the year in The Sunday Age:
Something begotten in the State of Denmark
Put a lab coat (or an orange shirt) on Prince Fred and you'd mistake him for a goal ump!

Monday, October 17, 2005
Category: Pitchers
I got Psycho Beach Party at JB today for $4.99. It is a lot like some of John Waters' 80's & 90's films so it definitely won't be everyone's cup of tea. Lauren Ambrose is absolutely marvellous as Gidget Chicklet and Beth Broderick playing her mum is terrific as well. Charles Busch triples up on writing the original play (?), writing the screenplay, and hamming it up as Captain Monica Stark. It's there in the library if you are crazy enough to want to have a look.
7.0/10.0 I watched from start to finish apart from beer breaks.

Category: Fillums (homage)
This is about to be shown here. It looks like an absolute cracker.

Category: Engineering
This takes my prize as the best ever bridge, I wonder why I didn't know anything about it before. In addition to being a largish suspension bridge it has a unique solution to enable ships to navigate past it. Thanks blogless Ian.

Category: Web
This is sorta cool -- www.spook.com is what they shoulda called it I reckon.

Sunday, October 16, 2005
Category: Ecofundamentalism
Over at Envirospin Watch, Prof. Em. Phil Stott has a great article which begins:
I'm so glad I am not an ecofundamentalist. To be a 'Green Bunny' is to doom oneself to perpetual unhappiness, frustration, and anger with your fellow human beings and the state of the world. The reason is simple. Ecofundamentalism is utopian (and remember "utopia" means "nowhere"). People will just not do what you demand. You are never going to achieve even a smidgen of your desires, and whatever you do manage to squeeze from a reluctant and unconvinced populace, you will always, like Oliver Twist, be left wanting more.
I couldn't agree more.
[You will probably have to search the archives. The date for the article is Sunday, October 09, 2005. It is well worth the effort]

Category: Who knew?
THE Queen was just one step short of getting a Hills hoist for the Buckingham Palace backyard
But the GG rejected the offer on her behalf.
I just hope that the offer was for a hydraulically operated device; there is a shortage of dignity in the notion of her majesty bent over winding up the rack and pinion, isn't there?

Saturday, October 15, 2005
Category: Music
I just got this CD called Inner City Sound and it's an absolute cracker. As the blurb says "an instant classic twenty years in the making".

Category: w-class
It seems we have given the royals a w-class.

Category: Bell Curve
An interesting article here about The Inequality Taboo.

Friday, October 14, 2005
Category: Ejacashun
The Yobbo has an interesting way of looking at publically funded education.

Thursday, October 13, 2005
Category: Radio
The lawyer's big announcement wasn't that big at all really. Debi Enker has moved to an extended Thursday slot talking TV (and today, specifically this which sounds like a cracker (ATV@2030 on Tuesdays)). The other big announcement concerns an undisclosed new segment on friday's around 1000. Ho Hum.
UPDATED: Friday's segment is a discussion between a panel of two (+ the lawyer) on The Week In Review. Hmmm, The Party Line (only without the party or the line, I guess).

Category: Radio
Can't find a link, but in this mornings dead tree TTT it was reported that the X-Country Chalkie got the T,V.'s gig. Initially only for three months while she works out whether she likes the big smoke (and rates, presumably). It goes on to say that she doesn't consider herself a journalist, is unlikely ever to win a Walkley and doesn't ask probing questions. Should fit in quite well, I guess.

Category: Doom Drinks
From the Professor:
"Drink, sir, Missa Williamson-san?"
"Absinthe, if you please."
"Absinthe! Surely you know of it, or at least of Edouard Manet's "The Absinthe Drinker", the first major painting of his career, yet cruelly rejected by le Salon in 1859.

Category: Fruit
Always thinking, the folks down at Apple have managed to squeeze a clock and "a calendar that Jobs said never looked better" into the vaPid viPod's firmWare. I reckon they might have stolen that idea from the guy who invented the microwave oven.
Market response? Apple's Profit Quadruples, Yet Stock Falls.

If you can't get at those links, don't forget about bugmenot.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005
Category: Architecture
Interesting site on Petrol Stations.

Category: Religion
Let Jesus help you with your gambling.

Category: Space TFF
It appears that the US mid-west is highly deficient in UFO's.

Category: Doom
David Williamson is an uninformed intellectual snob. This article has so many problems that I'm not even going to start in on it. Just read and be appalled.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005
Category: Apple
Jeez, some folks will bet on anything. (might need to scroll down a bit)

Category: Stats
Regarding that Hun article that W-class referred to, I suspect that the silliness of the numbers is due to inconsistent use of accounting codes across the system. Being on the finance sub-commitee of a local school I am familiar enough with the accounting tools to have a reasonable guess at how this might have happened.

Category: Food
Humans have shown themselves to be extraordinarily flexible when it comes to diet. Nutritionists don't seem to be aware of that simple fact. Never mind, Burger King are.

Category: Stats
I'm interested in these stats from the Sun - it's a list of $amounts that parents had to pay for their kids at each Vic school. But they seem tooooooo uneven.

Monday, October 10, 2005
Category: Middle East
Big Lies: Demolishing the Myths of the Propaganda War against Israel is a booklet (in PDF form) giving an Israeli perspective of regional conflict over the past century or so. It has certainly uncovered a few things for me. Well worth the read even though it is about 50 pages.

Category: Technology
This is why I work in the technology sector (albeit at a University) the industry develops such Great Stuff! (language is foreign but I hope intent is apparent)

Category: Apple
Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain.

Category: T,V.
Looks like she's gonna start operating outside of the dominant paradigm! (scroll down to the "Taking control" section)

Sunday, October 09, 2005
Category: Radio
(I blog this for the point of completeness)
On Radio 1 last week (or, more specifically, during the Computer Talk-Back segment) The Lawyer told us that the lawyer and the left(ish) journo will no longer be presenting the computer segment. I think that's a bit sad really.
Faine then pointed out that there would be some MAJOR CHANGES made to his show and annouced next week. Hey, maybe T,V. might be taking over (from Sydney).

Saturday, October 08, 2005
Category: BBC
The headline for an Age article dated 70ct2005: God told me to invade, says Bush. The first par:
US PRESIDENT George Bush has said that he was instructed by God to invade Iraq and Afghanistan, according to a new BBC series.
So it wasn't a direct quote of Bush as unambiguously claimed in the headline, rather they are relying on a translation of a memory of a memory of a translation (or something like that).
The Independent doesn't even allow that it is just a claim stating:
President George Bush has claimed he was told by God to invade Iraq and attack Osama bin Laden's stronghold of Afghanistan as part of a divine mission to bring peace to the Middle East, security for Israel, and a state for the Palestinians.
Of course if they had waited until an official statement came from the white house they would have discovered a denial which might have added some balance to the story.
Laurence Simon asks:
Will there be repercussions for this baldfaced lie by the spokesliar for an entire society of deathcultist, bloodthirsty liars?
Will there be repercussions for the BBC's distribution of this blatant lie for the sole purpose of attacking the President of the United States?
I can't find any report of the Whitehouse denial in today's Age; I'm sure that they are more than happy for the "strange-voices-in-my-head-telling-me-what-to-do" meme to perpetuate.

Category: Viromunt
From today's Hun:
LIMA -- The Amazon River, South America's largest, has hit its lowest level in the 36 years since records have been kept near its source in Peru.
Peru's National Port Company has recorded the river's level at the river port of Iquitos, in northeastern Peru, since 1969.
"It is quite clear that low levels have been more frequent in the past 10 years," said French researcher Jean-Loup Guyot.

I think we're meant to take it in as one more piece of evidence for anthropogenic climate change but I can't be sure because the article goes nowhere. Anyone?

Thursday, October 06, 2005
Category: Petrol
This page gives some idea of the real (inflation adjusted) petrol price series over the past 25 years. It's the bottom (grey?) line that tells the story. Things are a little different in Australia due to foreign exchange rates and parity rules but the recent increase is, relatively speaking, a failry small bleep, isn't it?

Category: Audio
Pick the difference. This is (presumably) a parody of audiophilic nonsense. This is true audiophilic nonsense.

Category: Memories
The foyer of the ALP's Sydney HQ:

The foyer of the ALP's Sydney HQ.
Hat tip to James Morrow at Investigate magazine's Briefing Room.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005
Category: Technology

Category: Technology
One of our friends Peter played a shocking trick on our friend Brett. Peter was a rep for some kind of multi-national drug company and as such had access to all of the freebies that come according to that station. Some time in the early eighties he had many little digital clocks with alarm function. He set the alarms to go off at different times on about twenty of the devices and hid them (discretely) within Brett's car. Brett found many of them but never all of them. He became so annoyed that he eventually sold the car. (True Story)
Thanks to current technology we now have this which could well be used for the same purpose if you're not a drug rep.

Category: Art
I'm enjoying the floundering of the art world over whether it is alright that a self taught artist might use a how-to-draw book as inspiration.
This article has a picture of the original and this article has a picture of the... other original.

Category: Theatre
This looks like a must see...
WHAT do you get when you take a naked artist, country music and big names from the Australian stage?
According to actor David Bradshaw, "anything goes".
Anything goes, indeed!
Bradshaw plays Tam, an eccentric Kalgoorlie artist and real-life character. "I've actually spoken to this bloke a few times. He lives up in the Top End".
Kalgoorlie in the top end? Yes, anything goes.

Category: Recently Dead Celebrities
And it's goodnight from him.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005
Category: Rubbish
"Actor" names child after fictional character's real name (as opposed to he's alter-ego name or his common name). Gotta love actors, eh?

Category: Meeja
The Professor is on fire with his destruction of Michael Gawenda's piece titled President bushwhacked.
Really, in this wonderful age of ours, when almost all the information in the world is never more than a few keystrokes away, it really shouldn't matter that a dying newspaper sends to Washington someone who still thinks the old rule applies: I distort, you swallow. As promised in an earlier post, what we're talking about here is Michael Gawenda's summation of the state of play with the Bush administration, which he claims "now faces problems that could destroy his presidency".
Well it's a good line, but in a country where the chief executive is elected for a fixed, four-year term, what could Gawenda possibly mean? That Bush, like Nixon, stands a fair chance of being driven early from office? That he will be dragged from the White House and hanged from a lamp post on Pennsylvania Avenue?
... lots more and then...
Other than noting that Blair visited the White House, Gawenda has managed to get ever single important fact wrong.
Go read!
BTW Gawenda has one paragraph (or at least part thereof) that makes sense:
The charge by Bush haters that he was dumb and ignorant was always a dumb and ignorant charge, the result of hatred overwhelming rationality. Bush was smart, politically canny, had the ability to laugh at himself, and in the words of his former speechwriter David Frum, was a "risk-taker", a man with few self-doubts who was seen by a majority of Americans as a decisive leader.
Strike the "was" and replace it with "is" and the TTT might even be seen as starting to "get it". If I were you, Michael, I'd be on a desperate search for my own "Mojo".

Monday, October 03, 2005
Category: Radio
Goodness, it looks like Razer has got Clarke's old gig. (When the announcement came out on the Drive Show this arvo I thought it may've been T,V.'s gig but I think Libby intentionally read it that way (God, for those of you who aren't me or Semi, that's a bad post)).

Category: Cakes
Our Girls stopped getting "theme" cakes when they were about six or so (and that's being generous).
Mac folks are funny!

Category: Penguins
I think I am detecting a PC shift in the naming of fairy penguins. In this article in the Tullamarine Trotskyite Tribune, they are referred to as "little penguins". The Wikipedia has the following to say:
Little Penguins (Eudyptula minor) have several common names. In Australia they are often referred to as Fairy Penguins due to their small size, in New Zealand they are called Little Blue Penguins or just Blue Penguins owing to their plumage color, the New Zealand Maori call them Korora, in Chile they are known as Pingüino pequeño or Pingüino azul.
So why does Steve Butcher use the name little penguin? From the official Penguin Parade site:
amazing penguin facts
  • The name 'Little Penguin' is now used instead of 'Fairy Penguin' as it is a more accurate translation of their scientific name, Eudyptula minor.
I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall at the meeting where this was decided. Can't you just imagine the politically correct nonsense that would have been flying about?
My guess is that they were originally called fairy penguins not because of their size, but because they dressed up in poofy tuxes and minced it about on the beach!

Category: Royalty
Andrew Windsor(-Mountbatten) sets a great example for the rest of us:
... ANDREW was stopped from boarding a Qantas jet to New Zealand after refusing to be screened by security guards at Melbourne Airport.
After a tense stand-off, the Duke of York reluctantly agreed to be searched with a hand-held detector.
What a turkey!
Thanks for pointing at this go to Kev Gillett who has, hitherto, been mysteriously overlooked but is now in the poolroom.

Sunday, October 02, 2005
Category: Cinema
We just went to Airport West to see Sky High and it gets a big thumbs up. It was funny, it was slick, it had a great story, and it had Melt with You played in the final scene. The story is all good guys/bad guys, cools/dags, pretty/plain just like you'd expect in a high school love story but it is couched in the terms of heroes and sidekicks. Kurt Russell is worthy of a particular mention for his near perfect acting of a very silly character.
9.0/10.0 - It's no Charlie and the Chocolate Factory but we'll be at the top of the queue as soon as the DVD is available.

Category: Radio
Purely an observation but (and just to document it) 774 just broadcast a special edition of AM at 12:05pm.

Category: Christine Keeler Mandy Rice Davies
According to this article in the Hun, Tom Grogan of the Professional Driver Trainers' Association is angry. It seems a bloke who had had a few drinks was the licensed passenger for his learner-driver son. Now that is rightly against the law but let's get a bit of perspective here. The man had a blood-alcohol level of .068. He was NOT rolling drunk. It seems that by exploiting lazy, press release journalism, Grogan is discrediting the whole learner driver system. Who would gain if less parents spent time in the passenger seat with their learner-driver children? The members of the Professional Driver Trainers' Association is who!
Incidentally, "the man was one of just two offenders caught from the 973 drivers breath-tested by police". By geez, those numbers are way down, aren't they?

Category: Language
Over at Bunny Champers place (which has some terrific reading, BTW), a nice little essay about language: The French really don't have a word for 'entrepreneur'!

Saturday, October 01, 2005
Category: Prayer
From Kev Gillett's blog:
Bless the ‘taters, bless the chooks
Bless the waiters, bless the cooks
Jesus Christ, most divine
He who turned water into wine
Please bless these simple men
Who are about to turn it back again

Category: Culture
Join the Army, see the world, travel, shoot people, listen to mp3's! Fantastic.

Category: Humour
From Rec Humor Funny:
The secret to enjoying a good wine is:

1 - Open the bottle to allow it to breathe.
2 - When it does not breathe, give it mouth-to-mouth.

Category: Who knew?
If the government has no knowledge of aliens, then why does Title 14, Section 1211 of the Code of Federal Regulations, implemented on July 16, 1969, make it illegal for U.S. citizens to have any contact with extraterrestrials or their vehicles?
Well... it doesn't but it would be a really nice thing if it did.
Some of our readers might find Snopes to be a very interesting read in general as it cuts its way through the nonsense that is urban legend.

Category: The European game
When Inverness Caledonian Thistle beat Glasgow Celtic in February 2000, the following headline appeared:
Super Caley go ballistic, Celtic are atrocious
That amused me.

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