Saturday, 25 April 2009


If you ever required proof that music + random mechanical parts + geek intuition = GENIUS! then here, m’laud, is the evidence…

It all began with The Imperial March from Star Wars played on various pieces of computer hardware. For example, a floppy disk…

…and a hard-disk drive…

…then the geek musicians discovered the lyrical qualities of the HP Scanner…

..and this has resulted in the monumental orchestral cacophony that is Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody played on an Atari 800XL, a Texas Instruments TI-99/4a, an 8 Inch Floppy Disk, a 3.5 inch Harddrive and HP ScanJet 3C…

Geek musicians, I salute you!! I'm off to set fire to the piano
and dig my old Spectrum out of the loft.....

Monday, 20 April 2009

Kit Kat Christ

A reader of the Dutch website discovered this choccy embodiment of Jesus in his Kit Kat on Good Friday.

What's next? Mary in a Mars bar?

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Label Lover

Ok, hands up if you choose your wine for the evening based on font type, print colour and cutest indigenous creature on the wine label?

Really...? Huh, I didn’t realise you were that shallow…!

I have at least one good friend who would balk and suffocate himself violently at the thought of anyone picking a wine based on the label alone, but I must admit, some of these label designers certainly earn their crust. Gerri L Elder at WebUrbanist is showcasing ‘61 exceptionally creative wine labels’, some of which are functional, stylish or downright hysterical. My favs are below, but I’m sure there are other crackers in circulation…

Gotta admire the honesty of this one...

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Twittering under the Influence

Drunk texting is embarrassing. Drunk dialling is even worse. Even drunk emailing can induce awkward squirming at work the next morning. But who knew that drunk twittering would eclipse them all?

Thanks to Twitter's messaging system, not only is your drunken message destined solely for a best mate/ex-partner/boss/random stranger’s email or mobile inbox, now all your friends and acquaintances….no wait…the entire world!…can giggle collectively at your late night intoxicated attempt to type a coherent sentence, or shake their head at your need to inform the world of your recent conquest in the local pub or admire the numerous photos of your newly acquired traffic cone collection. Shame on you! I’ve only committed one or two T.U.Is (to my knowledge) and when re-read in the sober light of morning I’ve been pleased to see that they have been fairly innocuous, but recently I’ve had cause to cringe at one or two misguided late night twitters from friends.

Now…Google mail has Mail Goggles, Virgin Mobile has a drunk dial prevention option, the iPhone has the Bad Decision Blocker app and even LG attemped to solve the problem with their LP4100 Sobriety Phone which not only had a number lock-out system but even came with a built-in breathalyser! There are many other apps and systems to combat drunk dialling/emailing, but what about drunk twittering prevention?

There are, of course, benefits to be had for the sober parties involved….it would be cruel to suggest that anyone who is mean, nasty or even in the slightest bit annoying should be encouraged to remain within the close vicinity of a computer when in a slightly inebriated state for purposes of revenge. Or even to suggest that friends of celebrities should get them utterly rat-arsed, sit them at a computer and thereby negate the need for tabloid journalism. Just a thought.

Recharging my Bojis

I woke up this morning to a monumental thunderstorm. Not the standard flash-and-rumble type of storm, just a continual rumble as though something large and heavy was being dragged up my street. Hardly any rain either, which is weird. Now it’s pitch dark and the constant rumbling is interspersed with bright flashes of lightning just like there is a bank of paparazzi in my bedroom. Creepy, huh?

Most sane people would snuggle back under their warm duvets and wait for the storm to pass, particularly as it’s still holiday time and there is no need to dash off to work. But my first thought was to grab my dressing gown and run out into the garden. No, I haven’t lost my mind. I wanted to take my Boji stones out into the garden to get them recharged. Hmmm, then again, maybe I have lost my mind…

I bought my two Boji stones when I was about 12 years old. At the time I was heavily into crystals, herbs and numerous other New Age faff and a large hippy-type woman sold them to me at a craft fair. She told me that the stones possessed a powerful electromagnetic energy and as a result they had strong healing properties. They also have a gender! The larger smooth stones are female and the smaller, chunkier stones are male. Here are mine (Fred and Wilma):

There are a number of superstitious stories surrounding the stones and various websites offer advice on how to take care of them. The aforementioned hippy woman suggested that I keep them together, put them in water once in a while to allow them to drink(!) and their energies can be recharged by putting them on the ground during a thunderstorm.

These days the Boji stones collect dust on a shelf, but I still rush out to stick them in the middle of the garden whenever there is a thunderstorm. I’m not sure why I still do this. Who says superstition is dead?

Friday, 10 April 2009

Jesus, Judas...and Jimi Hendrix?

Happy Easter everyone! It’s that time of year once again when we spend quality time with our families and celebrate that day when Jesus took some time off work and…ummm…ate chocolate eggs and blessed the chicks and bunnies...

Rather appropriately for the season, Jeremy Baker at Popped Culture has posted a comprehensive list of 101 parodies of Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper. There’s quite an extensive selection, ranging from Popeye to Lego and Star Wars to the Simpsons. Who knew geeks could be so inventive? I’ve included a few tasters below, but check out the gallery for the full list.

Happy Jesus egg day!

Thursday, 9 April 2009


Last night I dropped in on old school friend and found that she has a new kitten. I’m not normally a ‘cutesy-awwww-bless’ kind of girl but do I have a soft spot for cats, so for the duration of the evening I was reduced to a simpering fool, babbling baby talk to the tiny ball of fluff that was attempting to gnaw through to my knuckle bones. At first I thought that, as a woman, I was predisposed to find small, young creatures cute, but it transpires that the men of her household are equally as captivated with the new arrival. So no oestrogen influence there then.

A great deal of research has been carried out into what exactly we classify as ‘cute’ and the most infamous study of ‘cuteness’ is Stephen Jay Gould’s "A Biological Homage to Mickey Mouse" which tracks the gradual development of Mickey Mouse into an infantile looking character and explains why humans feel affection for animals and people with juvenile features. It seems that certain identifiable personality traits and physical features elicit the ‘awww cute’ response, as Wikipedia (yes, yes I know…but it actually comes through on this one!) concisely sums up:

‘Cuteness is usually characterized by (though not limited to) some combination of infant-like physical traits, especially small body size with a disproportionately large head, large eyes, a pleasantly fair, though not necessarily small nose, dimples, and round and softer body features. Infantile personality traits, such as playfulness, fragility, helplessness, curiosity, innocence, affectionate behavior and a need to be nurtured are also generally considered cute.’

Now potentially, in light of this research, you might think (and I’m speaking to the girls here) that if you have a large head, big eyes, a small nose and possess all these characteristics then you have found the blueprint for success when it comes to attracting guys. But here’s why a woman in possession of these ‘cute’ characteristics would make for a psycho girlfriend/partner:

Playful = will flirt with other men
Fragile = will moan when breaks a nail
Helpless = too feeble to open jars or carry heavy objects
Curious = nosy
Innocent = frigid
Affectionate = stifling and needy, will demand cuddles
Needs to be nurtured = very dependant, unwilling to get a job

So, y’see, cute doesn’t carry well into the ‘human genre’. Best stick with kittens.

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Who’s watching the Watchmen audience?

KMTR reported yesterday that a man has shot himself during a screening of the film Watchmen. This is how Slashfilm reported it:

‘A 24-year-old man shot and killed himself at the Regal Cinemas in Eugene, Oregon during a late night screening of Zack Snyder’s Watchmen. According to KMTR, there were about 10 other people in the theater at the time. The yet-to-be-named man was seated in the back corner of the theater. Police were called after patrons heard a loud “popping sound” behind them, and reported it to the theater managers. The screening was stopped and ticket purchases were refunded.’

Now that’s one pretty harsh film critic. I appreciate that 160mins can be tiring, but that’s quite an extreme reaction (mind you, I’m sure that one or two guys who have been forced to sit through slushy rom-coms have tried sawing at their wrists with the ice-cream stick before now…)

And I love how the additional piece about ticket refunds is added at the bottom as though a) that somehow makes it all better and b) the cinema-goers were solely concerned with getting their money back, while stepping over the puddle of blood at the back of the auditorium. Still, there’s nothing like a bit of realism to add to the cinema experience…

Monday, 6 April 2009

A first Greek TwEpic

Below is a Twitter version of Homer’s Odyssey by Eric Alt found on Holy Taco. Oh if only all Greek epics were available in 140 character max bites! I’m waiting for the inevitable spin-offs; Shakespeare? Dostoevsky? Hebrew Bible? Come on folks!


I opened my handbag this morning to find that my banana had impaled itself on a propelling pencil. Now my mobile, purse and other handbag paraphernalia smell of banana guts. R.I.P. lunchtime banana.

Edit: maybe I should donate the remains to Amy Winehouse, who according to NME has taken up smoking banana skins (WTF?)

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Can You Hear Me Dear?

According to, Orange has shown that older people are more likely to use text messaging on their mobile phones with younger users preferring to use mobile IM services such as AIM and MSN Messenger. It looks as though text messaging is hearing the distant call of the death knell, but this evening I was reminded why this may not be a bad thing, particularly with more *ahem* elderly phone users.

This afternoon I received a classic text from my mum. A quick bit of background; we went shopping together this evening and she sent me a text this morning to let me know what time she was calling round to pick me up. This was the text message:

What vine in gym bay pick u up aunt 4 x

Now I studied Greek, Hebrew and ancient palaeography back in my student days so I like to think that my interpretational skills are pretty good, but I’m stumped by this one. She later told me that it means ‘What time…(?)in the gym…will pick you up at 4pm x’ and explained that she wasn’t wearing her glasses, although the truth was revealed by her subsequent question “what do you mean by ‘predictive text’?”

BTW: above right; not actual picture of my mother (just in case she ever figures out the Internet…)

Richard Dawkins: God Deluded or Just Deluded?

I’ve reserved judgment about Professor Richard Dawkins, the author of The God Delusion, for some time now. Today he’s gone and made headlines again by calling the Pope ‘stupid, ignorant or dim’. Way to pick a fight!!

Now I’m indifferent and ‘live and let live’ when it comes to religion in general, but the preachy in-your-face type of religious fanatics really piss me off (y’know, the ones who tell you that you’re all going to burn in hell unless you pray to their particular ‘imaginary friend’, as Jimmy Carr would call it). But ardent atheists like Dawkins also seriously piss me off. I’ve tried to ignore the fact that he can look exceptionally creepy at times (nothing that a good stylist couldn’t put right) and the fact that he occasionally slips into a school-boy ‘so there!’ kind of aggressive attitude, but when I have seen him speak he is prone to slip into the same glassy-eyed zombie rant that he criticises the religious fanatics for being so partial to. What’s that saying about black kettles and accusatory pots?

Same old same old, I’m afraid. Turn it in.