Friday, July 30, 2004
  Note to Self
Keep more promises made to earlier selves. 

Wednesday, July 28, 2004
  Comment (0) Haiku
Bowed before you
Arms outreaching, contemplate
The empty hand 

  Animal Eco-facts
1). Every time somebody drives 100 miles in the average family saloon, two rabbits die. Fact.
2). Each transatlantic flight causes the death of three mountain gorillas. Fact.
3). Electromagnetic waves from electric toothbrushes cause 5% of chaffinches to migrate to the north pole each winter, where they expire, perplexed. Fact.
4). The only substance known to dissolve gold is horse urine, hence the probable origin of the saying, "Past the stable door, I wear my wedding ring no more." Fact.
5). In 1967 the US government miniaturised 200 chimpanzees to the size of peanuts and parachuted them over Havana, Cuba. The micro-chimps were brainwashed to crawl into Fidel Castro's orifices, take the anti-miniature antidote which would return them explosively to their normal dimensions. The plan failed when high winds blew the pico-primates out to sea. Fact. 

  Bulletproof Shoes
Coñazo recommends Vivo Barefoot shoes made from kevlar. Coñazo himself has re-entered the earth's atmosphere equipped with only said shoes, ray ban sunglasses and some dainty cucumber sandwiches. 

  Daily Wisdom
1). A stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet.
2). An estranger is just a friend you haven't met.
3). An e-stranger is just a friend you haven't. 

Sunday, July 25, 2004
  Editor's Note
Not every superhero's genesis goes according to plan. For every underachiever bitten by a genetically enhanced spider, there is a spotty teenager who's assumed the powers of a radioactive chipmunk. For every mild mannered scientist that turns into a hulking monster after accidental exposure to gamma rays, there's one that turns into a cocker spaniel when he gets angry. The following article tells the unknown story of one of these superhero also-rans. It's a warning to all of us who yearn for powers beyond imagination - sometimes dreams come true with a wicked twist... 

  Hedge Accounting at the O.K. Corral
FAS 133 was the new standard for reporting the company's derivatives and hedging transactions, but Wyatt just couldn't get his head around it. The report was due in an hour and Wyatt knew he would be in big trouble with his boss if he didn't deliver.

He stared at the computer screen and searched through the menu options of the powerful Peoplesoft financial software. Perhaps there was a function somewhere that might do the trick at the click of a button. The system was the heart of the finance function in the company, but it also controlled the manufacturing process, the sales department and even HR. It was and incredible piece of software if you knew how to use it. Wyatt didn't.

Time was running out and Wyatt's sense of impending doom was deepened by the gathering rain clouds outside. Thunder boomed in the distance. The report wasn't going to be ready in time, there was no way. The lightning came nine seconds later. At 330 meters per second the storm was around three kilometers away, at least he could calculate that much, but it wasn't going to help him with his derivatives report. Wyatt's boss was walking over to him. The thunder cracked louder than before. This time the lightning came six seconds after and the computer screen seemed to blank out for a split second. The storm was coming closer.

If the boss hadn't needed to rush off to a client dinner Wyatt was sure he would have fired him on the spot. As it was he could deliver the report the next morning even though that meant staying behind by himself until it was done. Boy, would Mary be sore at him for coming home late again, but he figured that she would be even more upset if he came home without a job, again. The rain lashed against the windows and the thunder and lightning were coming just a couple of seconds apart. Wyatt still didn't know where to start. It was all very well for the accounting standards bodies to publish new ways of doing things, but why did they have to make it all so complicated?

An almighty crash of thunder seemed to rock the entire building and the lightning was so close that Wyatt could still see it through closed eyes. The screen flickered a few times and went blank. Dammit, that was the last thing he needed. Wyatt bent down under his desk to check the cables. Another peal of thunder made him bang his head against the underside of the table. He was checking the cable connections when the lightning hit the building, blowing every fuse and circuit and burning through every wire as several million volts made their way to earth.

"This is one incredible piece of work, Wyatt, I knew you'd come through for me," said the boss. "You must've gotten this done before the strike on the building, right?"

"Sure, it was a piece of cake," he said and walked back to his cubicle. A piece of cake indeed, reflected Wyatt, for the report was done in 30 seconds once power had been restored early that morning. You see, Wyatt had absorbed the full capabilities of the Peoplesoft Enterprise Resource Planning software as a result of the accident.

Wyatt became the star of the finance department and ultimately the CEO of the company. The job was easy with his new found powers, but Wyatt ERP was tortured for the rest of his life in the unsuccessful attempt to think of ways to use his rather abstract superhuman capabilities to fight the scourge of crime. 

  Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Let JibJab help you decide which of these two rich white guys you prefer. 

Thursday, July 22, 2004
  Special Bulletin: Cairo Falls
A force of three thousand Rhesus Macaques have captured strategic locations in Cairo, including TV and Radio stations and the parliament building. The Egyptian government has capitulated to prevent harm to the civilian population. A curfew is in place and the city is eerily calm.

There are unconfirmed reports that a strong force of Hamadryas Baboons is approaching Tangiers. More details to follow... 

  Lock Up Your Bananas
Holy cow, holy shit, holy fuck, the monkeys are starting to walk upright. This is how it all begins. 'Planet of the Apes' will come to pass and we are here to see it happen.

Thank fuck the marmosets are on our side...for now...

This author will chart the course of the coming Global Monkey War until the keyboard is prized from his cold dead hands, perhaps by a troop of cheeky Ring Tailed Lemurs, those cute, deadly little scamps. 

Monday, July 19, 2004
  Just Read
1). "Armor" by John Steakley. Mankind falls out with giant ant-like creatures, possibly over girl. 

Saturday, July 17, 2004
  This is a Journey Into Sound
It is with a palpable sense of pride that Dr. Grayden Ringwald leads me on a tour of his new multi-million dollar medical facility.
The first of its kind in the country, the Derrick May EmergeMC Room (DMEMC) treats only dance related conditions, cases of which are really pumping up.
Dr. Ringwald said, "Techno Tendonitis affects one in five clubbers in its mild form but the condition can be crippling in severe cases.  Do you know what it's like to see a 19 year old girl who's legs twitch uncontrollably at 180 beats per minute?"
This causes me to reflect - I have a daughter almost that age.  I realise how much we need this new centre, and professionals like Dr. Ringwald.
Medicine in the front line of modern music does have its complications.  As Dr. Ringwald told us, "This morning at 5am we had a guy with a serious case of Deep House Hamstring, the place was heaving to the heavy bass thumping out from his reverberating hamstrings, but his legs could have snapped at any second.  That is no cool way to break it on down, so we had to operate one one leg while we kept the beat going strong on the other." 

The DMEMC will only treat conditions caused by the latest music.  Sufferers from Classical Corns, Jazz Induced Jaundice, Rock & Roll Rickets will have to look elsewhere for relief.

Dr. Grayden sees no moral issues in turning away patients with what to him are outmoded musical conditions.  "If I have to decide between some dude with the Bluegrass Bum Boils and a guy with Happy Hardcore Hemorroids, then there's no debate about who's getting the deep relief.  That's what I call my Hip-Hopocratic Oath, man."

Friday, July 16, 2004
  Opportunity Knocked
Have you ever had an incredible opportunity, a moment of incredible power and possibility, but totally fucking blown it?

If so, we'd like to hear from you for our new show, "Close, But No Cigar!"

Dumped a girl in high school who became a starlet? Laughed at Michael Dell's crazy schemes when he needed early investors? Crushed an exotic insect which upon further detailed study may have yielded a cure for cancer? Let slip of a trapped Leprechaun, losing any chance of obtaining his pot of gold?

Or just thought of a really good joke to tell Bill Clinton in front of reporters - five minutes too late?

However which way you've fucked it up in good style, call us now. We pay 1000 smackeroonies for any story we use.  Or do you want to remain a loser all your life?

Wednesday, July 14, 2004
  Clash of Cinemizations
I'm really, like, stressed out over this whole Clash of Civilisations type thing. It's like there's this implacable difference between us and them and there's just no way to be bridgin the gapin chasm between us. For me it's like that General dude from Pakistan said, there's a new Iron Curtain between West and East, and we even have a crazy Berlin wall between Israel and the Palestinians, so it's just like the bad old days, but with some kind of crazy New World Order flava laid down, just coming on that bit too strong and overpowering all the harmony.

So, I'm just puttin this out there, but what I'd kind of appreciate right now is some feel good vibes from the big shot playmakers in Hollywood. Not like your escapist takin your mind off it shit, but some takin your mind in it and through it, if you see where I'm headed. I'm thinkin a re-telling of Romeo and Juliet, but, like, with a big East/West resolution at the end. I'm thinking the son of some Ariel Sharon type dude meets the daughter of a trippy Arafat like character and they, like, fall in love and I mean Big Time.
All I'm sayin is this my friends - let's get to a Middle East peace propoZal through the mass media tools at our dispoZal. You feelin me?

  Almost Famous for 15 Minutes
In the following story this much is real:
1). I do want to see a shuttle go up
2). I did shake Bill Clinton's hand
3). Dutch bikes cannot peddle backwards
4). Bill Clinton is a great man
5). Dreams can come true

  Taking Off With Bill Clinton
One of my great ambitions is to see a shuttle launch from Cape Canaveral, and another is to hear Bill Clinton speak. He's one of the great men of our time.

Today I was cycling back from work with my shopping hanging from the handlebars. I passed by Amstel Hotel and there was a crowd outside, so I pulled up to see who would come out. It was Bill! He didn't just disappear into the black BMW waiting for him, but he came and talked to the photographers and slightly bemused locals.

I pushed my bike to the front and he made his way down the line towards me. A hand shake would have been good enough, but for some reason I said to him, "Want to buy a bike?"

He looked puzzled but was smiling as I continued, "This is a typical dutch bike, very useful for politicians..."

By this time the photographers had started to tune into the conversation.

"Oh, why's that?" he asked, amused.

"Because it doesn't allow you to back-peddle."

He laughed a lot at this, said he would remember that one and asked for my name. He shook my hand again and patted me on the shoulder. I felt like a million billion bucks or a galaxy of exploding stars - whichever is bigger.

After he finished working the crowd he got into the car and the mini-motorcade drove off. Some of the photographers took photos of me, asked me about myself and what I thought of Clinton. Like I said, he's a great man.

Now I'm off to Cape Canaveral to lay down some patter on Neil Armstrong while the rockets go boom boom ZOOOOM. 

Tuesday, July 13, 2004
  Wanted: Nuclear Sub
One soviet era nuclear submarine in good condition for conversion into luxury underwater hotel/convention centre. Top dollar paid for mint condition specimen with full service history. ICBMs not required. Will consider hiring of experienced crew members with sunny disposition and strong client service/nuclear submersible skills. 

  Favourite Piano Music
1). "Pavane for a Dead Princess" by Maurice Ravel
2). "Big My Secret" Michael Nyman
3). "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini" by Sergei Rachmaninov 

Monday, July 12, 2004
  Death Wish Fulfillment
If you accept the premise that cinema provides us with vicarious experiences through which we can live out our dreams, then it would seem reasonable to suppose that you can work backwards from the movies to figure out what our innermost desires might be.

Movies tell us that love conquers all and bad guys always get their comeuppance, but what about darker, more fringe beliefs? After all, isn't the collective subconscious less Disneyland, more Arkham Asylum? What do movies tell us about half-thoughts so disturbing they have to be manacled in a reeking cell?

Here is one snarling figment of filmic imagination. In a string of movies including ‘Armageddon’, ‘Deep Impact’, ‘Independence Day’ and most recently ‘The Day After Tomorrow’ we find America subject to cataclysm. Through meteorite, alien invasion and climate change, America is all but destroyed.

It could be that these movies play on the millenial notion that we occupy end-of-times, or perhaps they reinforce the idea of our insignificance and the fleeting nature of our existence, but movies are wish fulfillment, so the interpretation that nags me is this one. America wants to be destroyed and reborn.

There is something in the American psyche that wants the slate swiped clean – there is a recognition that things have gone horribly long somewhere along the way and the only medicine is a fresh start with a few survivors who are going to do it right this time. While asking ‘why do they hate us’ the inner voice of America knows the answer already.

The idea of a few good men and women surviving armageddon, and building a more moral society through work, ingenuity and courage appeals to the American frontier spirit. After the cleansing fire, the new city on the hill.

If the wish to be destroyed exists in the depths of the American psyche then the danger is that in a million small ways it seeks to bring it on. The fact is that the world resonates in subtle ways to these sub-vocal calls.

What we need is a movie to work us through this issue, to show us that even if there is an unfortunate release of nanotechnology that wipes out humanity and returns the planet to its pristine state, when the few survivors return to this new Eden from Moonbase 1, they still screw up their new society, even if they are all paragons of American virtue.

In this way, cinema is enema, cleansing the bowels of the collective subconscious.

Thursday, July 08, 2004
  I've Been Reading
1). "A Confederacy of Dunces" John Kennedy Toole
2). "Last Car to Elysian Fields" James Lee Burke
3). "Starship Troopers" Robert Heinlein
4). "The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay" Michael Chabon 

Tales from Amsterdam, distorted by powerful magnets and deep fried until crispy.

02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004 / 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004 / 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004 / 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004 / 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004 / 08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004 / 10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004 / 02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005 / 04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005 / 07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005 / 09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005 /

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