Friday, 31 October 2008

All Hallows' Eve


Halloween causes reflection of the nature of terror, the nature of fear--though they all this ghoulish mimicry is to either appease or confuse what terrorizes us. Considering all the different lenses on what's scary, I doubt anyone wants to emulate the frightening things out there. It's time to play the Pyramid: stubborn stains, having a wash that's not whiter than white, not having the appropriate tool for DiY projects, not having superior supplemental homeowners' insurance, not having the perfect partner, paying too much for anything whatsoever, not having a perfectly-toned body, hay-fever and seasonal allergies, dated ringtones and Handys and PCs! Oh my! And guess what? That's just European tv. Apparently my mother purchased a giant plasma televison to experience larger-than-life pharmaceutical passion-plays in the States. Instead maybe we dress up like those consumers we see in the commercials everyday to appeal or confuse.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Asimov



Sometimes, while trowling the internet, humans encounter a succinct test such as this, which can once and for all establish the end-user as a sentient being. It's an odd sort of Turring-test that can prove that the gentle-surfer at the other end is not some malicious bug or a diabolical Evil-Genius. I wonder if such a lithmus test will endure into the future. Could humans devise such an ingenious test that a robot would never be able to pass? Text not recognized--malfunction, malfunction! Would it become standard to be asked to validate one's humanity when making any transaction? Discobear575--there, that shows I am legitimate.

Sunday, 26 October 2008

The Maverick and the Soccer Mom


It's passing for excitement nowadays--maybe a bit of distraction from the implosion of the rest of the world. McCain and Palin are still tight like prom night, never mind that she might be the very co-efficient of drag on the entire campaign (hmmm...drag, I ought to be Sarah Palin for Halloween--I can't imagine anything scarier). I have no sorrow for the destruction of the Republican ticket--I think they're perfectly-matched, sort of like Caligula and the horse he appointed senator--but rather the way it dulls the entire discussion and maybe exaggerates differences that are not really there. Here's what we know: Obama is a Marxist, a befriender of terrorists, and a totally not esentially different person from John McCain. It is maddening.

Now McCain is playing dismissive with calls that his thrust is falling short and ignoring polls that show him slipping further and further behind. Maybe--Pepsi Choice sponsored by PepsiCo is an invitation to a little white lie: some responders may be too embarrassed to admit to a pollster that they want to vote for the ticket with the only candidate with executive office experience, but will do so in the privacy of the voting-booth, or to tell a stranger that they won't vote for a black man.

Tuesday, 21 October 2008

copyFight


It seems there was a fleeting golden age for the stuff of reference, nostalgia and inside-jokes, and albeit, it was a virtual one, ready resources for a quick study and appending an effortless and expansive footnote to anything. Throttling battles over intellectual property and old claims laid to old monpolies and video-vaults have put an end to that, however. The one great wealths of clips and music have been diminished, certainly, and video form is sometimes a poor substitute for original sources seen in their original context. It's scary to think that coming generations may never hear of a Charlie-in-a-Box, Snaggletooth's laugh or a puppet called Madame, except maybe as contemporary allusions that are only intended for members of the mature audience, because of niggling copywrite laws. I was once going to explain to H that my father regarded my mother as Fred and Barney did the Great Gazoo, batting away an invisible gremlin, but it is really hard to explain without a few visual cues.

Monday, 20 October 2008

Erin Go Braugh



H and I have just returned from another adventure--this time in the south-western corner of Ireland. We had a great time, rumbling through this beautiful countryside. We were sold on some little villages spewing torrents of hot folk music into the crisp sea air, but learnt that many things are not on offer "off-season." No matter--we still had a great time and, as I told H, surely someone would write a folk song lauding his fearless driving skills and incredible brillance as "a sheep-dodger." I went on to narrate a lot of our activities in Irish folk song form, mostly to the tune of "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald." We had great fun--craic is the word for it, I learned, pronounced crack, and a very positive-proof for the adages about budget airlines and surprising landscapes, all that's out there to discover.

Saturday, 11 October 2008

Do not google this

HP Lovecraft once wrote, "The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents... some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the light into the peace and safety of a new Dark Age." Maybe we are becoming too inter-connected, too smart for our own safety, peeking at the whole tawdry, moth-biten tapestry.

Rank Hypocrisy




Too bad she's a Replicant--and doesn't even realize it herself... An independent panel apparently found the then governor guilty of abuse of power for pressing the dismissal of a family member appointed to a state office. When voted into the state stewardship, she was vetted with this perogative, since the participants in this family-drama, nepotism, were elevated and brought down by a whim. Abuse of power sounds like a heady accusation but it won't stick. It's rank hypocrisy when one does or is given a pass simply because one can do it. Unfortuneately, one can't level classiness or good sense against someone and it's left to the realm of public-opinion, which sometimes is translated to democracy, American-style. Voters usually get what they ask for and what they deserve.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

A Zinfandel might go well with that Red Herring

One could say that I am know for non-sequitir thinking, for not leaping to the most logical conclusions, perhaps a very feeble short-term memory, as well. Before the oncet of a cold, like now, I will sometimes drink red beet juice to stave it away. I'll gulp down a whole container and inevitably during the short pause spanning the time it took to take the last sip and the jaunt to the toliet, I will forget that I had made a concerted effort to finish a half litre of not exactly vile nor particularly delicious liquid. I'll start to leave water, and break into a momentary but viseral panic when I see that it is full-on bright pink and a dozen medical traumas flood through my head. I think the public have gulped down a similar tale with the market corrections and the global financial meltdown. So Iceland is basically bankrupt and this has all the markings of an old fashion run on the bank. If what is happening (exactly what is what is a little tricky to define) is anything more than a market correction, the reigning in of unrealistic and uncreative ambitions, then throwing all the money in the world won't solve it. Precious capitalism can't be rescued through nationalizing businesses and institutions. Credit can't be persuaded to become more cooperative, looser, by ticks of governmental manipulation. No actionable course really addresses any of the root causes, and only serves to undermine the value of real assets. Intelligent and selective amnesties need to be extended while things are allowed to collapse and stagnate, and creativity rewarded over greed and keeping up appearances.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

transmigration

I understand that you should not touch or move a person during an out-of-body experience, otherwise he might never find his way back to his body from the astral-plane, sort of like disturbing a sleep-walker but seemingly much more traumatic. I have been helping re-arrange offices these past few days and it seems that company computers have the same temperment. Network printers seem especially prone to getting lost and displaced PCs grope for them like scratching phantom limbs. Not deigned to have special administrative-rights, I remain puzzled by this phenomenon--I suppose in the same way a non-initiated doctor would react to a suddenly catatonic patient with no mundane diagnosis. I suppose I ought to leave the heavy-lifting up to the professionals.

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Happy Fiscal New Year & the People's Democratic Republic of America

I wonder what prattling and pit-falls FY09 will bring. I think there might be a growing niche for financial action/horror, but the villians are no so much the faceless, caricatures that the audience expects but rather Everyman, our mirror-selves, which tend to be better grossing when portrayed as the working-class hero. No one wants to be reminded that the enemy is us, and no matter what diabolic manipulation, nationalizing, pandering, ploying and temptation are at work, no one else could be blamed for personal perchants like living off borrowed things and credit vying for time that yield personal financial crises. H ought to be a movie director. He comes up with some very clever ideas, and meanwhile, I will recommend something like an airplane that hijacks itself, or the story of the Manson Family in anime. Since the assassination attempt on Reagan, I told H, the US president has routinely used body-doubles for potentially dangerous public appearances. Unfortuneately for the United States of America, it's sometimes the doppelganger that gets the safeguarding and the authentic things gets sacrificed. A double was planted for the risky chore of reading "My Pet Goat"... Pretty far-fetched and not terribly horrifying but it might explain a lot.