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October 31, 2006

This is a Public Service Announcement

No guitar, though. Sorry. My dad just forwarded me a couple of those emails you see where people claim some terrible thing is going on and could happen to you, but turns out to be an internet rumor. Well, for once, these emails are actually true. A quick search on Snopes verified them.

  1. Identity thieves trick the unwary into revealing their personal details by telling them they've failed to report for jury duty and warrants for their arrest are being issued.
    The scammer calls claiming to work for the local court and claims you've failed to report for jury duty. He tells you that a warrant has been issued for your arrest.

    The victim will often rightly claim they never received the jury duty notification. The scammer then asks the victim for confidential information for "verification" purposes.

    Specifically, the scammer asks for the victim's Social Security number, birth date, and sometimes even for credit card numbers and other private information — exactly what the scammer needs to commit identity theft.

    Link




  2. Scammers pretend to be fraud investigation agents for Visa and MasterCard in order to obtain credit card security codes.

    My husband was called on Wednesday from "VISA" and I was called in Thursday from "MasterCard". It worked like this: Person calling says, "This is Carl Patterson (any name) and I'm calling from the Security and Fraud department at VISA. My Badge number is 12460. Your card has been flagged for an unusual purchase pattern, and I'm calling to verify. This would be on your VISA card issued by 5/3 bank. Did you purchase an Anti-Telemarketing Device for $497.99 from a marketing company based in Arizona?"

    When you say "No". The caller continues with, "Then we will be issuing a credit to your account. This is a company we have been watching and the charges range from $297 to $497, just under the $500 purchase pattern that flags most cards. Before your next statement, the credit will be sent to (gives you your address), is that correct?"

    Caller then says he "needs to verify you are in possession of your card. Turn the card over. There are 7 numbers; first 4 are 1234 (whatever) the next 3 are the security numbers that verify you are in possession of the card. These are the numbers you use to make internet purchases to prove you have the card. Read me the 3 numbers." Then he says "That is correct. I just needed to verify that the card has not been lost or stolen, and that you still have your card. Do you have any other questions? Don't hesitate to call back if you do."

    Link


For those of you who have been afraid of people digging through your trash to find out your personal information, i hope this will alleviate some of your fears. Clearly, the cons are way more sophisticated than that. So, put away your shredders, secure in the knowledge that when they come to steal your identity, it won't be in a way that's so obvious. Con artists have too much panache.


By min | October 31, 2006, 8:38 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



October 30, 2006

Dumb As Dirt

I'm too disgusted to even rant about this. Read it yourself. Goddamn Democrats.

In their push to win back control of the House, Democrats have turned to conservative and moderate candidates who fit the profiles of their districts more closely than the profile of the national party.

One such candidate, Heath Shuler, was courted by Republicans to run for office in 2001. Mr. Shuler, 34, is a retired National Football League quarterback who is running in the 11th Congressional District in North Carolina. He is an evangelical Christian and holds fast to many conservative social views, like opposition to abortion rights. [--emphasis mine]

Not only that, they keep pulling the center to the right when they talk about people like this as "moderates" in the media. Wankers.


By min | October 30, 2006, 4:04 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1) | Link



Oh dear.

They've finally abandoned whatever remnants of sanity they had on racmu:

Friend,

I'm always looking for good and intelligent individuals like you to
visit my website, www.ChezBrandon.com , and it has pictures of
beautiful women, information about aged clones, and a link to Ultimate
Fighting Championship, a very good show.

My name is Brandon, and I'm in my 20s, am a college student, and as lie
detectors, both conventional and unconventional would show, I've never
been sexually penetrated. Moreover, I could be shown pictures of X, Y,
and Z, and it would show that I'm only sexually attracted to women.

The Murders of Our Leaders were Stopped.

I can take lie detector and psychological tests. I tell the truth. A
mini-psychological test: 8 times 2 = 16, the world is round, not flat,
and the year is 2006. Feel free to call me, cellphone number is
503.740.0272, and utilize a GK-1 voice analyzer truth detecting device
too:

>From Congressmen Bill Frist to John Kerry to Dennis Hastert to Hillary

Clinton to John Warner to Ron Wyden to Gordon Smith to John McCain to
Joseph Lieberman to Nancy Pelosi to Diane Feinstein to Ted Kennedy to
anyone else who happened to be in the Congressional chambers during
either a joint session of Congress or a State of the Union address from
Masons to Skull and Bones members to Secret Service agents to pages to
visitors to other good individuals, they all would have been murdered,
all of their accomplishments stripped away, their earned wealth
stripped away, their homes stripped away, their family and friends
stripped away. Moreover, someone else would have been sleeping with
their spouses.

Elements of an organization, not of course the Masons or Skull and
Bones -- I was able, thank God, to thwart the conquest of the USA and
the world, and was able to thwart the murder of United States and world
leaders, via a psychic vision of Senator John Warner and other
Congressmen being choked to death by gas, which was confirmed
auditorially from both ears, such as "He saved Congress," who they were
going to kill "all of them,""how did he know that?" and "he's psychic"
-- murdered my biological Aunt Gloria Atkinson, whom I loved very much,
as she did of me, and there is a tribute to her on my website. Please,
friend, be sure to barricade your bedroom door at night. I'm not afraid
of aged clones or the attempted chopping off of my appendages (elements
of an organization talked about chopping off my right middle finger and
right ear, and 10 out of 10 of my toes, like my right middle finger
have unique steeple designs).

I'm not afraid of anything. I'll defend myself to the best of my
ability, and I commit my life to saving the lives of men, women, and
children and strengthening good organizations. Sincerely, Brandon


By fnord12 | October 30, 2006, 3:51 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (1) | Link



Let's see some corporate synergy work to my advantage

ROM, Spaceknight, was a toy created by Parker Brothers that Marvel made an in-continuity comic book for. Parker Brothers is now owned by Hasbro. Hasbro is now making Marvel toys. Hence, Hasbro should make a Rom action figure.

Someone tell Bob.


By fnord12 | October 30, 2006, 12:39 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



I know... i improooooved it.

Do you really think that love is gonna shave the squirrels? Cause i don't think so. I really, really hope so. But i don't think so.


By fnord12 | October 30, 2006, 7:38 AM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



October 29, 2006

The staples of Halloween: candy, bobbing for razor-blade filled apples, and dragon puzzles

We put out the medium sized puzzle, but they scoffed and went right for the big one.


By fnord12 | October 29, 2006, 9:29 PM | My stupid life | Comments (2) | Link



42 points of articulation but i can barely stand.


For a while i held out and didn't get any of the newer Marvel toys because they're a larger scale than the figures i have. But then they release The Watcher, who is supposed to be big, so i got him. Then they released Blackheart, who is actually a crappy character but i got him anyway. Then i reasoned that Power Man can be bigger than the average figure cause he's a big guy (and my old Power Man figure is awful). Then i saw that they put out a figure of the original Baron Zemo, and you can't pass that up (although now i have giant-father Baron Zemo, and tiny-son Baron Zemo from the Secret Wars line). But now the floodgates are open and anything can happen, so there's The Sentry, too.


Ugly or gigantic?

Daddy and 'Lil Nazi

Actually, these new figures are kind of crappy. The Blackheart figure can't even stand (his tail is propping him up against the wall in this picture). The others are only slightly more stable. Baron Zemo's arm feels really delicate and almost broken, and he looks crippled. Power Man's fist is molded into a weird position - and it's the one place on a 40+ point of articulation figure that i can't adjust. And these points of articulation are way overboard - it just means that they bend funny and have weird seams and lines in odd places on their bodies.

Eh, but they're Marvel toys so i like 'em anyway.


By fnord12 | October 29, 2006, 9:03 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



October 28, 2006

We thrive on your comments

Four new Politburo songs submitted for your review. Please leave us some feedback.


By fnord12 | October 28, 2006, 1:04 PM | Music | Comments (5) | Link



October 27, 2006

U.S. Growth Decline Unexpected?

Ok, i don't follow the economy and all it's ups and downs and ridiculous predictions or anything so far be it for me to pretend to know anything about it. All i'm saying is "Really? Unexpected?".

Growth in the US economy unexpectedly plummeted in the third quarter to the slowest rate for over three years, driven by a weakening housing market, official data showed today.

The Commerce Department said the economy expanded at an annualised rate of only 1.6% during the third quarter, down from 2.6% three months before. This was the weakest rate since the first quarter of 2003, when growth was 1.2%.

Wall Street economists had forecast growth of 2.2%, however a sharp tumble in housing activity contributed to a marked slowdown.

I mean, the housing market contributed to the slowdown and everyone's known for months that the housing market was on the decline. And you could see it coming for years before this. So, why exactly was it such a big surprise?


By min | October 27, 2006, 2:28 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (2) | Link



Mollusks

From Wikipedia:

Mollusks are triploblastic protostomes. The principal body cavity is a blood-filled hemocoel. They have a true coelom (eucoelom); any coelomic cavities have been reduced to vestiges around the hearts, gonads, and metanephridia (kidney-like organs). The body is often divided into a head, with eyes or tentacles, a muscular foot and a visceral mass housing the organs.

Mollusks have a mantle, which is a fold of the outer skin lining the shell, and a muscular foot that is used for motion. Many mollusks have their mantle produce a calcium carbonate external shell and their gill extracts oxygen from the water and disposes waste. All species of the phylum Mollusca have a complete digestive tract that starts from the mouth to the anus. Many have a feeding structure, the radula, mostly composed of chitin. Radulae are diverse within the Mollusca, ranging from structures used to scrape algae off rocks, to the harpoon-like structures of cone snails. Cephalopods (squid, octopodes, cuttlefish) also possess a chitinous beak. Unlike the closely related annelids, mollusks lack body segmentation.

So they don't necessarily have external shells. Some have internal shells, like squids, or no shells (octopusses).

Now you know.


By min | October 27, 2006, 10:57 AM | Science | Comments (3) | Link



October 26, 2006

Shingles

The Center for Disease Control is recommending that people over 60 get vaccinated for shingles. SHINGLES! According to this article, 1 million cases occur each year in the U.S. Plus, the condition can last for months.

Shingles is a viral disease most common among older adults. A group of expert advisors to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending everyone age 60 and older -- get a new vaccine against shingles.

The vaccine was approved by the FDA in May. In studies, it reduced the incidence of shingles by 50 percent. Even in people who got the disease, most of those who were vaccinated experienced less pain.

...

Shingles is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox in kids. It remains in the body for decades, sort of "sleeping" in nerve cells along the spinal column.

According to Harpaz, "the virus that causes chickenpox stays in your body throughout life for reasons we don't really understand -- and for reasons we don't understand, it reactivates and comes to your skin down one particular nerve to the surface of your skin where it will cause a rash and pain on one side of your body in one area".

It almost appears as a 'shingle' along the body, hence the name. The lesions are blistery and very painful. They can travel to the face, and into the eyes -- where they can impair vision and even cause blindness. Shingles is most likely to occur in later years, when the immune system has declined.

...

"If we look at everyone who's over age 60, for all intents and purposes, 100 percent -- even if you don't remember having had it -- literally everyone age 60 and over has been exposed in their past lives to the chickenpox virus".

I've never had the chicken pox. My sister did, though, so i was clearly exposed to the virus. I really really really don't want painful blisters in my eyes or anywhere on me come to think of it.

I've never known anyone who had shingles and i do have quite a few family members who made it past 60, so i guess 1 million cases per year isn't such a huge number. Still, who wants to take a chance? Blistery eye lesions. *shudder*


By min | October 26, 2006, 1:53 PM | Science | Comments (4) | Link



Marvel Comics Sales Analysis

Monthly report from Paul O'Brien is available.


By fnord12 | October 26, 2006, 1:18 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



Random Lyrics Thursday

Prison Sex by Tool

It took so long to remember just what happened
I was so young and vestal then, you know it hurt me
But I'm breathing so I guess I'm still alive
Even if signs seem to tell me otherwise
I've got my hands bound
My head down my eyes closed
And my throat wide open

Do unto others what has been done to you
Do unto others what has been done to you

I'm treading water. I need to sleep awhile
My lamb and martyr, you look so precious
Won't you, won't you come a bit closer
Close enough so I can smell you

I need you to feel this. I can't stand to burn too long
Released in this sodomy
For one sweet moment I'm whole

Do unto you now what has been to me
Do unto you now what has been to me

You're breathing so I guess youre still alive
Even if signs seem to tell me otherwise
Wont you, wont you come just a bit closer
Close enough so I can smell you
I need you to feel this
I need this to make me whole
There's release in this sodomy
For I am your witness that
Blood and flesh can be trusted
And only this one holy medium brings me peace of mind

Got your hands bound, your head down,
Your eyes closed,
You look so precious now

I have found some kind of temporary sanity in this
Shit, blood, and cum on my hands

I've come round full circle
My lamb and martyr, this will be over soon
You look so precious
You look so precious now...


By min | October 26, 2006, 10:34 AM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



Meatloaf is Patriotic

"Bush 'not satisfied' with situation in Iraq" - unattributed headline

"i'm 'not satisfied' with the situation in the white house" - Glenn


By min | October 26, 2006, 10:30 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



10/25/2006

I'm swimming in a large pond. My sister's there, too. Mist starts rolling in over the water even though it's a perfectly clear day. A little gray cat appearsat the edge of the pond. It's much skinnier than a cat normally is. It's about the height of a kitten. It starts to walk across the water, and as it does so, time stops. The mist stops flowing, the water stops moving except where the cat's paws touch the surface as it walks. But we don't stop. We are unfrozen because we have our own magicks. I want to keep the cat. A little boy enters the scene, causing time to start again. He sees us through a hole in the fence and comes running. It's his cat. He takes it away. His mother says she'll give us a call later.


By min | October 26, 2006, 8:32 AM | My Dreams | Comments (0) | Link



October 25, 2006

For those of you following along at home

Here is the recap from our latest D&D session.


By fnord12 | October 25, 2006, 2:17 PM | D&D | Comments (0) | Link



Stan Lee's One Wacky Guy

He's totally awesome.


By min | October 25, 2006, 12:34 PM | Comics | Comments (0) | Link



October 24, 2006

Delicate Flowers

I always thought it was a well-known stereotype that the French are extremely rude and snobby. Apparently, it's not well-known to the Japanese, who, also apparently, have very delicate psyches. We should go mess with them.

Around a dozen Japanese tourists a year need psychological treatment after visiting Paris as the reality of unfriendly locals and scruffy streets clashes with their expectations, a newspaper reported on Sunday.

"A third of patients get better immediately, a third suffer relapses and the rest have psychoses," Yousef Mahmoudia, a psychologist at the Hotel-Dieu hospital, next to Notre Dame cathedral, told the newspaper Journal du Dimanche.

Already this year, Japan's embassy in Paris has had to repatriate at least four visitors -- including two women who believed their hotel room was being bugged and there was a plot against them.

Previous cases include a man convinced he was the French "Sun King", Louis XIV, and a woman who believed she was being attacked with microwaves, the paper cited Japanese embassy official Yoshikatsu Aoyagi as saying.

Link


By min | October 24, 2006, 11:32 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



Grandpa Rewls!

A 70-year-old British pensioner, trained in martial arts during his military service, dispatched a gang of four would-be muggers in a late-night attack in Germany.
...
The man, a native of Birmingham who now lives in Germany, was challenged by three men, demanding money, while a fourth crept up behind him. Recalling his training, the Briton grabbed the first assailant and threw him over his shoulder.

When a second man tried to kick him, the pensioner grabbed his foot and tipped him to the ground. At this point, the three men, thought to be aged between 18 and 25, fled, carrying their injured accomplice with them.

Link


By min | October 24, 2006, 11:21 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



Flippity Flop

I know we hate linking to someone else's post as a post, but he says it so well. Just the right amount of important info and snark. Ladies and gentlemen, i bring you Joshua Micah Marshall:

Say Ruttenberg and Cloud: "The White House said Monday that President Bush was no longer using the phrase "stay the course" when speaking about the Iraq war, in a new effort to emphasize flexibility in the face of some of the bloodiest violence there since the 2003 invasion."

Flexibility? I thought it was 'stay the course' versus 'cut and run'. One or the other. Who heard of 'flexibility'? That sounds so friggin' John Kerry.

...

Here you see the White House which has banged away at 'stay the course' and 'don't question the policy' for like two years now and suddenly at the crunch point they're bailing out. Or trying to bail out -- but now they really can't. The White House political czars look like nothing so much as those panicked embassy workers and refugees on the compound rooftop clamoring to get one of the last seats on those final helicopters out of Saigon. Same amount of planning, about as much dignity.


By min | October 24, 2006, 8:31 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



October 19, 2006

Random Lyrics Thursday

Baby's On Fire by Brian Eno

Baby's on fire
Better throw her in the water
Look at her laughing
Like a heifer to the slaughter

Baby's on fire
And all the laughing boys are bitching
Waiting for photos
Oh the plot is so bewitching

Rescuers row row
Do your best to change the subject
Blow the wind blow blow
Lend some assistance to the object

Photographers snip snap
Take your time she's only burning
This kind of experience
Is necessary for her learning

If you'll be my flotsam
I could be half the man I used to
They said you were hot stuff
And that's what Baby's been reduced to...

Juanita and Juan
Very clever with maraccas
Making their fortunes
Selling second-hand tobaccoes

Juan dances at Chico's
And when the clients are evicted
He empties the ashtrays
And pockets all that he's collected

But Baby's on fire!
And all the instruments agree that
Her temperature's rising
But any idiot would know that



By min | October 19, 2006, 12:49 PM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



October 18, 2006

They Did What??

Scientists studying the AIDS virus always had trouble with testing vaccines because the human HIV virus won't replicate in monkey cells and treatments that work on the monkey version of HIV (called SIV) doesn't always work on the human version.

So what was their brilliant plan? Tweaking the DNA of the virus so that it can replicate vigorously in both human and simian cells. Excuse me? Is it just me or does that sound like one of the worst things they could possibly do? Was the previous form of HIV not replicating fast enough for them? Now we have a virus that can replicate even faster. Wonderful. Brilliant.

They isolated the proteins in simian cells that normally recognize and mutate HIV and either found a way to trick the proteins or destroy them so they wouldn't interfere with HIV production. If there are proteines that can mutate HIV so that it can't survive, why they hell weren't they working on a way to turn that into a cure instead of finding ways to neutralize it?

So now we have HIV, SIV, and stHIV. Having read the very first pages of Steven King's The Stand, i have to say i'm not exactly feeling any better now that they've made this "breakthrough". Jerks.


By min | October 18, 2006, 8:55 AM | Science | Comments (2) | Link



He's Sure Got Spunk

That's what i like about Chavez. He's definitely inflammatory and i sometimes would prefer if he didn't say all the crazy things he did say. But i kinda like that he's not afraid to say them. He cracks me up and i appreciate his moves to de-privatize everything in Venezuela. Also, how can you not love someone who essentially gives a big raspberry to Bush?

All the more reason that it's too bad Venezuela's likely to lose this fight for a seat on the UN Security Council. For the most part, the Security Council has been in the pocket of the U.S., inevitably voting in whatever direction U.S. Foreign Policy is going. So, for Venezuela to get in there, duking it out even if they don't win the vote, would have been interesting to see. Alas, it seems it isn't meant to be. Not yet, anyway.

Venezuela and Guatemala have fought to a standoff in a second day of voting at the United Nations for an open seat on the Security Council. After 22 rounds of balloting, neither country is close to the two-thirds majority needed for election.
...
Two days of voting, 22 ballots in the General Assembly, left Venezuela 25 votes behind rival Guatemala in the race for the Latin American Council seat being vacated by Argentina. More importantly, Venezuela is more than 40 votes shy of the two-thirds majority needed for election.

Guatemala is also short of the roughly 125 votes needed to win. Its highest total in Tuesday's balloting was 112.

The result is a stalemate, with each country having enough support to block the other from winning, but not enough to win itself. After Tuesday's voting, the meeting was adjourned until Thursday to allow negotiations on a possible compromise.

Venezuela's ambassador Francisco Javier Arias Cardenas accused the U.S. of arm-twisting the rest of the countries and said if Bolton would come up to the mike and declare the U.S. would no longer pressure any one country on how to vote, Venezuela would accept a consensus. Bolton denied any such arm-twisting, but didn't actually get up to the podium to declare it. Not even to humor the Venezuelans so that everyone could move on.


By min | October 18, 2006, 8:38 AM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



October 16, 2006

Goodbye CBGB

First off, let me confess that i've never been to CBGB. Never. But i know that it helped shape the music scene in the 70s and i know alot of great acts started their careers here. So, i think it's ok for me to feel sad about it. After 33 years, CBGB is closing its doors. The homeless advocacy group that owns the building decided not to renew their lease. The owner spent a year in a legal battle to keep the place open, but it's over now and he's moving CBGB to Las Vegas. I think a Las Vegas CBGB will never quite compare to a NYC CBGB. CBGB's time has been long passed, but its closing is a sad occasion, a symbolic ending to a great musical era. Some musicians who had performed at CBGB during its formative years came back to give send off performances - Debbie Harry, Patti Smith, and the Talking Heads among them.

Link


By min | October 16, 2006, 11:28 AM | Music | Comments (1) | Link



October 12, 2006

Flat Mommy and Flat Daddy

Er......eh.......

It is one of the hardest things about being a military family. How to cope when a husband and father, or wife and mother, is posted abroad, especially to combat zones such as Iraq or Afghanistan.

Now the United States army has come up with a bizarre solution: Flat Daddy and Flat Mommy.

Many military units can provide families with a life-size cardboard cutout of their overseas warrior. The family can then take that figure to parties, put it in the passenger seat of their car, take it to bed or do whatever it is that families want to with a replica of their loved one.

...

From there the idea took off and has been adopted by units across America. They can be found going on dates with their wives in Alaska and having dinner with their families in Colorado.

Experts believe the cutouts are a useful psychological device, especially for children, that helps cope with the stress of long absences. It allows the family to genuinely feel the missing person is still involved in day-to-day life. [emphasis mine]

That's just weird. And kinda sad.

Link

i wonder how much money it's costing them to do this and how many suits of body armor it might translate into.


By min | October 12, 2006, 12:06 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



Random Lyrics Thursday

Christian Says by Tones on Tail

Christian says everyone's to love him
Christian says just let go
Christian says you can't be happy being this way
Christian says he'll never let you go
Christian says he can't let you, let you run free
'Cause Christian says he needs you so
In this age of frozen freaks
The only highs we get are low
In this age of cold relief
Brings only what a way to go
With money in your pocket
You say wise and always free
But with that money in your pocket
You've got nowehere to go

But baby, baby, baby wants an empire
Baby, baby, baby needs a real thief
'Cause baby, baby, baby wants an empire
Baby, baby, baby wants a real piece

These words hang empty in the air
The only sounds you speak are dumb
And I'm a a vampire
In this age of golden grief
Your own reflection's on the blink
This burning issue won't cease
This burning issue's got to go

'Cause baby, baby, baby wants an empire
Baby, baby, baby needs a real thief
Baby, baby, baby wants an empire
Baby, baby, baby wants a real piece


By min | October 12, 2006, 10:38 AM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



October 11, 2006

Anything For Appearances

The Chinese will do lots of things for appearance. I thought having your makeup tattooed on and your eyelids cut and re-sewn was pretty bad. Both of these don't hold a candle to the newest attempt to look "better".

China has warned image-conscious citizens against using the rack to lengthen their legs after several such operations went badly wrong, Xinhua news agency said. ADVERTISEMENT

Ten people were reported to have been disfigured after they underwent stretching surgery last year, it added.

The operation, which involves breaking the patient's legs and then stretching them on a rack, has become popular among young professionals "desperate to climb up the ladder in the country's height-conscious society," Xinhua said.

...

Height is usually listed as a requirement for jobs or certain schools in China. Many employers require women to be over 1.65 meters (5 ft 5 in) and men over 1.70 meters.

It is also an important factor in courting, when many Chinese women expect their partners to be over 1.70 meters and men also care about their potential wives' height to avoid short offspring.

I guess it's good that i didn't move to China to get a job so i could learn Chinese since i don't meet the height requirement for employment anyway.


By min | October 11, 2006, 11:42 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



October 10, 2006

No Time To Take an Interest in My Kids

So we were at the Toys R Us yesterday (super paper mario doesn't come out until dec 31st. chumps) and while we waited on line, i was forced to overhear this woman's cell phone conversation. She had a couple of young kids with her. Presumably hers. And she was on the phone saying "Splinter cell. No. Splinter. As in 'splinter'. Splinter cell." She kept saying it like the person on the other end spoke a language other than english. Mebbe they did. Who knows. She didn't seem to have very much familiarity with the words she was uttering either and her english was as good as most americans can boast. Mebbe it's just me, but i kinda think that if you have kids who play video games, you should have some idea of what games are out there. You should not be completely clueless and when your 9 year old kid wants to play something like Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell, you should have enough knowledge about what they're asking for to say "hell, no, Little Johnny." Instead, it seems like parents make no effort to know about their kids interests, content to remain ignorant until such a time comes when they can blame the industry for not being more vigilant against "inappropriate content". How about you don't get your kid a game like Vice City or Splinter Cell? That way you don't have to worry about them downloading a patch that let's them get the characters to have sex or whatever the hell else.

Yeah, i know. They'll just go over to their dirtbag friend's house and play the game. There's not too much you can do about that except not letting them hang out at the friend's house. It's like trying to keep kids from learning curse words at school. But there's a big difference between your kid's friends having asshole parents and you being the asshole who takes your 7 year old to see Clerks II.

Birth control. Public water supply. See how the plan sounds better and better everytime?


By min | October 10, 2006, 3:05 PM | My stupid life | Comments (7) | Link



The End is Nigh

I thought last week was fucked up. This week is turning out to be even worse. First the woman who uses her 4 week old baby as a weapon and now this. Glenn thinks it's signalling the end of the world. In that case, what the hell am i doing at work?

A Bulgarian woman who killed her son was released from prison because of terminal cancer. She then went home and killed her husband, police said Tuesday.

The 57-year-old was sentenced to 15 years in jail for killing her 29-year-old son with a garden hoe in April 2005 while he was sleeping.

Last month, authorities judged her to be in the final stages of cancer and let her go home, where she stabbed her husband in the throat with a knife.

"It was established she was in the last stage of cancer, she had it all over her body," said a spokeswoman for the Bourgas regional police.

"They presumed she was feeling bad and she would treat herself and rest. But nothing of the kind. She got aggressive and ... she killed her husband."

...

"She threatened that, if she is released again, she will kill her second son as well," the police spokeswoman said.


By min | October 10, 2006, 1:42 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



October 9, 2006

Birth Control. Public Water Supply.

WTF is wrong with people?

A woman used her 4-week-old baby as a weapon in a domestic dispute, swinging the infant through the air and striking her boyfriend with the child, authorities said.

Link


By min | October 9, 2006, 3:13 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (1) | Link



It's Alive!!

More Resident Evil-ish frankenscience.

Scientists working at a British laboratory have achieved one of the most controversial breakthroughs ever made in the field of stem cell science by taking cells from dead embryos and turning them into living tissue.

The article also mentions the dead embryos' love of music and tap dancing. However, panic ensues whenever they are near a heat source. No pitchfork wielding villagers were available for comment.


By min | October 9, 2006, 2:43 PM | Science | Comments (5) | Link



October 8, 2006

Comic Reviews: Dr. Strange 1, Ant-Man 1, Beyond 4, FF 540

Doctor Strange: The Oath #1 -
Having just read all of the second Runaways series and now this, Brian Vaughan is becoming one of my favorite writers. Great characterization of Strange and his relationship with Wong (the scene where Strange is opening to portal oblivious to Wong's fight is classic). The opening scene with Iron Fist and Arana is also great. Nice art, too. I'm wary of cure for cancer stories because the audience knows ahead of time that nothing can come of it or it would alter the MU's status quo too drastically from the real worlds (yeah, they can have super heroes, but they can't have a cure for cancer or you'd wind up with a world that is no longer "our world but with super heroes". It's the same reason everyone doesn't have unstable molecule clothes and Pym particles), but i think i can get past that. It'd be a shame to lose Wong as a supporting character, though.


Ant-Man #1 -
This could be good, too. Kirkman wrote the fun Marvel Team-Up trades that i enjoyed (except for the third one, but that's because it's an alternate future story), so i expect this'll be a cute/fun story as well. Shrinking super powers are never very exciting but the twist this time is that Ant Man will be more self-interested than a traditional super hero, which should be good. But despite a lot happening this issue, i think it's too soon to say for sure. The idea of average SHIELD soldiers thinking Nick Fury could be an urban legend is pretty funny.

Beyond #4 -
So they remembered the Limbo thing, which means this story has to take place at some time when Spider-Man was wearing his original costume. I'm enjoying this a lot, but i'm trying to figure out where it's going considering it's issue 4 of 6 already. From the interview i read, the idea was to explore issues that Shooter talked about but never developed in the original Secret Wars. So far it's been pretty much focused at the micro-level with a bunch of characters barely off the transporter and their personal squabbles. The revelation that the Beyonder has been doing this Battleworld concept continuously for a long time is an interesting retcon (hopefully negating Secret Wars II as well as Defalco's cosmic cube debacle), and the idea that Immortus would bargain with the Beyonder by "giving" him the Space Phantom is also an interesting development, but i can't imagine what will come of it. Which is good, i guess, because it means the plot isn't predicatable and the writing is good enough that i'm enjoying it along the way.

Fantastic Four #540 -
This issue really felt like filler. I like the sequence in Civil War #4 better: Sue is not happy with the way things are going, and then Clor or Thone, whichever you prefer, kills Bill Foster, which is the final straw for her. She doesn't fight with Reed about it, but takes off in the night after leaving a note telling him to "fix" it. This issue doesn't really add anything to that but inserts a fight that they have prior to the battle. I think. It's hard to tell exactly because it seems clear that she is leaving here, but she is back in time to go to the big battle in CW4 and then leaves again? Or this takes place after the battle, and then they have the fight, and then she comes back, makes him dinner, etc, and then writes the note and leaves for real this time? It's a confusing sequence. I'll have to check the recent ASM issue to see where that fits in the overall timeline since there is overlap between the titles again. Maybe that will help. In any event i don't feel like Sue and Reed's fight here adds anything to the overall impact of Sue leaving. It was more poignant the other way.


By fnord12 | October 8, 2006, 3:59 PM | Comics | Comments (3) | Link



Album Cover wars

Link courtesy of Mike.


By fnord12 | October 8, 2006, 3:14 PM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



October 6, 2006

That's not a headline you want to see if you're the President

Despite jobs report, Bush pleased with U.S. economy


By fnord12 | October 6, 2006, 12:39 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (1) | Link



October 5, 2006

I just had a terrible thought!

What if Marvel sees the sales in Civil War and thinks that the recipe is "more crossovers" and not "really good writing?"


By fnord12 | October 5, 2006, 7:04 PM | Comics | Comments (1) | Link



Guns = Safety

Oh, here's another genius with a brilliant idea.

In the wake of school shootings in Wisconsin, Colorado and Pennsylvania during the last two weeks, a state legislator says he plans to introduce legislation that would allow teachers, principals, administrators and other school personnel to carry concealed weapons.

Rep. Frank Lasee, a Republican, said Wednesday that, while his idea may not be politically correct, it has worked effectively in other countries.

"To make our schools safe for our students to learn, all options should be on the table," he said. "Israel and Thailand have well-trained teachers carrying weapons and keeping their children safe from harm. It can work in Wisconsin."

Now, if the idea that having teachers and principals walking around the schools armed doesn't sound like a bacon-brained idea to you, let's just pause and reflect on the fact that his examples of "safe" schools are in Israel and Thailand.

How come you can be cracked in the head but still get elected to a position that allows you to make decisions that affect millions of people's lives? If that isn't proof that God is drunk, an asshole, or non-existent, i don't know what is.


By min | October 5, 2006, 3:56 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (2) | Link



Random Lyrics Thursday

I'm Too Sexy by Right Said Fred

I'm too sexy for my love too sexy for my love
Love's going to leave me

I'm too sexy for my shirt too sexy for my shirt
So sexy it hurts
And I'm too sexy for Milan too sexy for Milan
New York and Japan

And I'm too sexy for your party
Too sexy for your party
No way I'm disco dancing

I'm a model you know what I mean
And I do my little turn on the catwalk
Yeah on the catwalk on the catwalk yeah
I do my little turn on the catwalk

I'm too sexy for my car too sexy for my car
Too sexy by far
And I'm too sexy for my hat
Too sexy for my hat what do you think about that

I'm a model you know what I mean
And I do my little turn on the catwalk
Yeah on the catwalk on the catwalk yeah
I shake my little touche on the catwalk

I'm too sexy for my too sexy for my too sexy for my

'Cos I'm a model you know what I mean
And I do my little turn on the catwalk
Yeah on the catwalk on the catwalk yeah
I shake my little touche on the catwalk

I'm too sexy for my cat too sexy for my cat
Poor pussy poor pussy cat
I'm too sexy for my love too sexy for my love
Love's going to leave me

And I'm too sexy for this song


By min | October 5, 2006, 1:45 PM | Music | Comments (0) | Link



October 4, 2006

The Future!

It's amazing how accurately they predicted what a home computer would look like in 2004.

What exactly did they think we'd need that giant wheel for?


By min | October 4, 2006, 3:54 PM | Science | Comments (4) | Link



Math Fun

Thanks to fudge005:


By min | October 4, 2006, 2:56 PM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



First Amendment Zone

Ah well. It's lazy blogging. But King of Zembla's got it all set up already, so how can i resist?

From our distinguished colleague Dependable Renegade comes news that the First Amendment Zone, already depressingly puny, continues to shrivel...

On the one hand, you've got a U.S. citizen who was arrested on assault charges when he told our esteemed VP that he thought Cheney's policies were reprehensible.

On the other hand, in Iraq you've got a set of laws taken straight from Hussein's penal code that says public insults of the government or officials can get you up to 7 years in prison.

I guess if you look at both of these incidences together, they really do think they're spreading democracy. The only problem is that nobody actually checked to make sure they understood what that word meant.


By min | October 4, 2006, 2:23 PM | Liberal Outrage | Comments (0) | Link



October 3, 2006

Hell in a Handbasket

What the hell is going on this week?

In Colorado, a guy walks into a classroom, take the girls hostage, molests and sexually assaults them, then kills one of the girls and himself.

In Pennsylvania, a milk truck driver takes over an Amish school and kills the girls execution style before killing himself.

Republican Congressman Mark Foley gets caught sending sexually explicit emails to teenage pages and everyone's standing around mumbling, 'Um...yeah....we kinda knew he was doing that....but, um.....we didn't do anything to stop it." Including the FBI and the House Speaker. Tony Snow, the moron that he is, says they were simply "naughty emails" and nothing to squawk over. Matt Drudge, not to be outdone, blames the teenagers for "preying" on the good congressman. To top it all off, i hear the media are doing their part to help muddy the situation by conflating homosexuality and pedophilia. It's prolly the best strategy for the Party of Family Values to preserve their severely tarnished reputation. Blame the gays.

And as if that weren't enough, North Korea is nuclear testing. You know why? Because the only way to protect yourself from getting invaded and overthrown by the U.S. is to arm yourself with nuclear weapons. If Iraq had had nuclear weapons, they wouldn't be in the mess they're in now. That's the lesson the world's learned from our "mission to spread democracy" over in the Middle East. Too bad nobody saw that one coming - oh, except for the liberals who kept saying we shouldn't invade Iraq, but they're a bunch of pansy-asses, so ofc nobody listened to them even if they are always right in the end. Good job, assholes. I sure feel safer now.

The one almost good thing that happened is this:

An inmate serving a life term for molesting and killing a 10-year-old girl named Katie somehow got "Katie's Revenge" tattooed across his forehead, and prison authorities were trying to determine how it happened.

Right. Prison authorities have no idea how it could have happened. Or how that picture could possibly have found its way to the interwebs.


By min | October 3, 2006, 11:38 AM | Ummm... Other? | Comments (0) | Link



October 1, 2006

Comics reviews

Been real busy lately so i asked some guy from the Newsarama message boards to do my reviews:


Civil War #4 - God how could they do this? This is lazy, decompressed story telling. Nothing ever happens. Except bad things. How could they kill Bill Foster? Don't they have any respect for these characters? And they don't even tell us who the guy in the mask is. So confusing. Marvel will do anything to make money, even if it means writing intricately plotted stories built on accurate characterizations.

Astonishing X-Men #14 - This is such a re-tread of Uncanny X-Men 133. Can't Joss Whedon write anything original? I mean, it's the same exact story, except this time it's Kitty who's fighting the Hellfire Club, and it's a different Hellfire Club, and a totally different plot, but other than that, it's a total rip-off.

Heroes For Hire #2 - Iron Man would never call a guy who dresses like a bug and talks to bugs "creepy". It just shows that the two sides in Civil War aren't balanced. And Misty Knight and Coleen Wing are written and drawn like 70s exploitation characters!??!!!

Cable & Deadpool #32 - If Marvel isn't going to take this book seriously then why should i? God, i just hate comic books. Sometimes i wonder why i even collect comic books. But it's better to bitch about stuff on the internet than to just give up. If i keep whining, someday they'll write the books exactly the way i think i want. But i still won't be happy.

Amazing Spider-Man 535 - They're building a prison in the Negative Zone and they don't even mention what's going on in Annihilation? I remember when Marvel used to care about continuity. And why can't these liberal writers leave their politics out of comics? Comics should be a place where i am only presented with ideas that i agree with. If Straczynski doesn't like Guantanamo Bay why doesn't he just move to Cuba?

Eternals #4 - Jack Kirby must be rolling in his grave.

Runaways #20 - I don't even know who these characters are. Whatever happened to the Micronauts?


By fnord12 | October 1, 2006, 2:16 PM | Comics | Comments (2) | Link



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