Thursday, November 29, 2007

Women should wear dresses because they are feminine and womanly. I hope this is intended to be some sort of satire and not an example of the level of intelligence and debate one can expect to find in an American university. Although this is perhaps preferable to allowing fascists to come and speak at your union, which is apparently what we like to do in this country.

UPDATE: Oh dear, it wasn't a joke.

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Attery Squash- Charlie Brooker is Right About Everything. [via Thermal Satsuma]

Labels: ,

Women prefer sad stories if they are real, men like them if they aren't.


Annotated Fairy Tales with details on sources and derivations where possible.


Monday, November 26, 2007

This Won't be Pretty...

Someone, for no apparent reason, has decided to revisit the whole Dave Sim/misogyny controversy. The site doesn't appear to have any archives so this link won't point to the same column after the 2nd of December, but the signs don't look positive.

The same people who were carrying Dave Sim on their shoulders in triumphant jubilation just a few short years before, are now crying "Crucify him!" at every opportunity. Who Dave terms "Marxist-Feminists", these people have become the injured parasites themselves, as if their hearts were broken by what they perceive as Dave’s betrayal of them and their values. Yet it has nothing whatsoever to do with the comic itself, but rather with Dave’s published Ideas and Ideals, which stand in complete opposition to what many of these people hold sacred; and these, who I term the "Dave Lonely Hearts Club" members, strike back at him much as any woman scorned would. They have "banded together" to refer to him as "misogynist" at any opportunity, knowing full well that the perpetual use of that pejorative would and will continue to damage his professional reputation…even though it’s not an accurate label at all. They also call him "insane", not because he is, but because it is so much easier to dismiss him than it is to dismiss his Ideas. It is more than just a "minority viewpoint" to them; it’s a Dangerous Idea that must be eliminated at all costs.

Make no mistake, Dave Sim shook up the comics world in many ways, but none were more profound or eye-opening, or caused more contempt, than his revelations about the Female gender, and the effect that Marxist-feminism has had, and is having, on our current society.

The self-proclaimed "Pariah King of Comics" has indeed been shunned by the comics industry, and in the next few columns, I’d like to explore the amazing comic that is READS, and talk about the truths Dave revealed, and how the Marxist-feminists battled him every step of the way. Stay tuned!

Oh dear...

Labels: ,

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Hello you. Just back from a pleasant afternoon in the pub meeting new peeps. I've got some thoughts on Beowulf over here.


Saturday, November 24, 2007

Doctor Who's pioneering first producer has died. Telegraph obituary.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, November 23, 2007

It's Your Thanksgiving, Not Mine

“The Turkey Man” is an extreme form of such fetishes wherein a man feels sexual pleasure when he is treated like the Thanksgiving turkey. We didn’t make this up. (NSFW)
[via Coilhouse]

Labels: ,

Cheesy Peas!

Do you like chocolate? Do you like bacon? Do you want to stop the blood in your veins? Chocolate/Bacon bar. [via Big Fat Deal]


Thursday, November 22, 2007

Obesity might not be as bad for our health as assumed.

Only this month a study, led by Katherine Flegal of the USA Centre for Disease Control, reported that those who are overweight had no higher risk dying of cancer or heart disease and overall lived longer than those of "normal" weight. You might be surprised at her finding but she was not. "There is actually a large amount of evidence that suggests that the overweight live the longest," she says... a recent study by Cancer Research UK reported that 6,000 women a year get cancer because of obesity. But look closer at the detail of the report and you find an unreported story. This research also found the overweight are no more likely to die of cancer than the slim. "Overall there is no evidence of a strong increase in risk in being overweight, but there is evidence of a significant increase for people who are obese," says Doctor Gillian Reeves, who led the study.

I'd also draw your attention to this post by Lord Stephen of Fryingtonshire. Patrick and Kevin, as my only United Statesian readers, is Stephen right when he describes the difference between British and American debate styles, at least the USian side of it? It would certainly explain half of the arguments I've had with Americans in the past. The other half were due to being drunk.

Labels: , , , , ,

Feelin' Mean.

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Stop [sic] making gcses [sic] a necsessity [sic] to get into college so home-educated people like myself can attend colleges.

I've been home-educated for 3 years due to bullying and because of being home-schooled i airnt [sic] been able to take my gcses [sic]. Its [sic] now hard for me to get into college. I think colleges should have a entry exam for home-schooled people instead of banning us completly [sic] from going college.

It's mean and hypocritical of me to laugh at the mistakes of another, if you believe the news reports this person has managed better than most school children, four whole sentences without lapsing into txtspk. But really, if you're going to try and prove you're smart, use a spellchecker.

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Put Free Masonry on the National Curriculum for all Britains Schools.

Making the topic of Free Masonry compulsory in Religious Education, will help promote tollerance towards The Ancient practise of Free Masonry and the Temple of Solomon's connections to The All Seeing Eye.

Already signed by Secretive, Decietfull, lying Craft-Led by the "father of Lies"& continues to damage people and Show-boating, 'oh look i'm a freemason y'know' twaddle. No intolerance - most just not interested! who must be hell to introduce to people at parties.

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to allow laser hair removal to be available for free on the NHS for the Transgendered.

Laser hair removal is an absolutely necessary step for all people born transsexual/transgendered who wish to live their life as a female. Currently this treatment is only available in the private sector and usually costs around £3000 for the entire body. We the undersigned believe this to be completely unfair as the vast majority of people born with this condition do not have the financial resources for this treatment. We pay huge amounts of tax for free treatment on the NHS, however the male-to-female transgendered community is being discriminated against because the treatment we require most is not available on the NHS.

Hmmm, do female-born-women get free laser hair removal on the NHS? Admittedly they may not get it as thick or prevelent as men but I'm sure it's not a concern of just the transsexual female?

We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Remove Ian Blair as Commisioner of Police for London.

In the light of the finding of guilt against the Metropolitan Police in the shooting of a young Brazilian man on Health and Safety grounds, and his incompetent handling of the matter, Sir Ian Blair ought to be dismissed if he will not resign.

I'm in two minds about this. While Blair needs to go the rest of his team seem to have been forgotten, Cressida Dick botched it up, the armed officers on the ground made a pigs ear of it and then someone tried to cover up the whole affair and smear the victim with fabrication after fabrication about his behaviour.

Labels: , , , , , ,

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Massive cock-up as Government shows yet again it can't handle IT. And these are the people we're supposed to trust with our private information for ID Cards.

The sensitive personal details of 25 million Britons could have fallen into the hands of identity fraudsters after a government agency lost the entire child benefit database in the post.

Bloody Postman Pat. I never liked the look of him or his black-and-white cat.

Labels: , ,

This is What Democracy Looks Like... Apparently

Bush More Emphatic In Backing Musharraf. He Says Leader 'Believes in Democracy'.

Well, Bush and Musharraf have things in common, they've both stolen elections for example, but only Musharraf has been in the military.

I do love the way the Post reports it though.

President Bush yesterday offered his strongest support of embattled Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf, saying the general "hasn't crossed the line" and "truly is somebody who believes in democracy." Bush spoke nearly three weeks after Musharraf declared emergency rule, sacked members of the Supreme Court and began a roundup of journalists, lawyers and human rights activists.

Labels: , , ,

Aaaaah, Christians, you've got to love 'em. Turn the other cheek? Judge not lest ye be judged? Anyway, charmless bigots Christian Voice, consisting of sole member and professional timewaster Stephen Green, is at the High Court today asking for the right to give more free publicity to Stewart Lee's not really that good opera of a few years ago, Jerry Springer-The Opera. Mr Green thinks it's terrible that Stewart Lee has moved on to other things and wants to prosecute him, his dog and all the kids that picked on Mr Green at school for being a weirdo, for blasphemy, an outdated stain on our legal system not used since Mary Whitehouse prosecuted Gay News for printing this poem. If Mr Green did get his day in court it might prove more fun than the Diana inquest, you can imagine the scene:

Prosecuting Counsel: And then the chorus shouts "What the fuck, what the fuck, what the fucking fucking fuck" your honour.

From The Times report:

Michael Gledhill, QC, appearing for Mr Green, said... it was not being argued that "God cannot be criticised... This is not just about protecting the rights of a section of the Christian population. It is about protecting the constitution of the nation which is built on the Christian faith."

Yes, Mr Green is claiming that Jerry Springer: The Opera is an act of terrorism against the United Kingdom.

At the moment the Christian Voice website is concentrating on how vaccination is a Government plot to let four-year-olds have promiscuous sex. A DVD of Jerry Springer The Opera is available and would make a lovely Christmas present.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Why it's a tragedy that writers concentrate so much on misery at the expense of comedy. And not just prose either, how many long running TV shows have you seen where after a few seasons the program turns in on itself and becomes a never-ending gallery of horrors and pain, based on the mistaken idea that tragedy automatically elevates the tale?

Labels: , ,

Monday, November 19, 2007

From the geniuses that brought you: "Hey, let's arm these Taliban guys to fight the Commies for us!" comes the sequel: "Hey, let's arm these Pakistani tribes to fight the Taliban for us!"

Labels: , ,

Saturday, November 17, 2007

F*ck*ng B*st*rd W*nd*ws S***!

Why do we swear at inanimate objects?

I heard that theory somewhere that our species invented tools in order to kill people without feeling guilt, "I didn't kill him, the gun killed him". But perhaps it works in reverse, I'm not typing this on a computer, I'm typing it on my computer, it's me. So when Windows decides to crash for no reason it's like we've decided to do something stupid.


Several of the utilities companies have switched to paperless billing which is fine by me. In my case, BT and nPower have both stopped wasting paper and now I can see my bills on-line. At least in theory.

In the case of dear old British Telecom, I get billed around the 10th of the month and my direct debit payment goes out around the 24th. Last month I paid them before my bill was available. I phoned them up several times in the week after my bill should have been available and was told they were having problems and it would be available soon. They told me how much I'd be paying and, as it's in line with my usual bill I didn't have a problem. Some time between me paying and today they finally got the bill up, but helpfully put it's issue date as the 10th, so I've got no idea how late it really was.

NPower, meanwhile, claim one of my paperless bills was issued a week early than it was, and the other is now about a week overdue. It does make you wonder why it's easier for these companies to print bills on to pieces of paper and send them via the Royal Mail to my front door than it is to organise a few bytes so I can log on to their website and see these things on the internet.

Labels: , , ,

Picador books plan to stop printing new titles in hardback. Well, they might do limited prestige runs for serious bibliophiles, but for you, me and the plebs in W.H. Smiths, it's paperback time. My feelings are numerous and mixed about this.

I do like hardbacks. Providing you're not in a situation where the size and/or weight is an issue then the hardback is your friend. It's sturdy and more difficult to damage which, speaking as someone who winces whenever anyone bends a book's spine or turns the corner over to mark their place, matters. The binding is often better on a book which also matters. When J.D. Robb suddenly rose to prominence a few years back we had a rise in demand at our libraries. The paperbacks of her work (which my Mum read and said were full of spelling mistakes) which were presumably rushed out to meet the sudden demand were incredibly poorly made, and a lot of our stock was unusable after three or four issues. Admittedly, the books were probably taken out by spine-benders and corner-turners but they were cheap and shoddy and, in a market which is apparently moribund (despite getting rid of the Net Book Agreement a decade ago), are publishers not looking for ways to cut costs? A paperback book is designed to last long enough to be read by one person and then put on their bookshop until Judgement Day, where presumably you get in to Heaven based on a Q&A on A Suitable Boy.

The size of the book is also a factor. Something chunky like the aforementioned Vikram Seth or Michael Palin's chunky Seventies Diaries work better with a sturdier cover, in paperback they look like someone trying to fit into clothes a size too small, leaving the reader at risk of a bibliographic wardrobe malfunction.

Paperbacks are nice and cheaper though. And the book market is an oddity, being the only market where something is released, then after a period released again in cheaper packaging, with no extras. At least when albums or DVDs are re-released they give you bonus tracks or deleted scenes goodies (perhaps that's an alternative the books market might like to investigate?) And there are a hell of a lot of authors out there who don't deserve the extra cash that people spend on the hardback. That this is considered standard rather than optional seems crazy. I'd quite like the option of reading a book from the library, perhaps in paperback, and if I like it, ordering a hardback from the publishers that has extra annotations and material, the In Rainbows Boxset approach to novel production you might say.

Still, a positive thing is that Picador isn't pulling a music industry and blaming the falling sales on piracy and are doing something that doesn't involve claiming it's the public's fault. That's a definite plus point.

Labels: , , ,

Friday, November 16, 2007

United Hollywood. A blog by and about the Writers Strike over in 'Merka. There's a general sense of surprise over here amongst those that are aware that this is happening. There was a belief that American unions were as supine as most British unions seem to be (UNISON apparently failed in getting it's members to vote for a strike for pensions), but this kind of disruption, well, it's almost French!


Dear Jubilee Line,

I don't mind you having breakdowns on the service (well, obviously I do mind, but I accept it as a travelling hazard). But what does annoy me is when you don't have the usual frequency of trains running and still describe your service as 'good'. If your service was 'good', you'd have the usual trains every ninety seconds or so, rather than with a seven or eight minute gap as today. And to describe the next train as being four minutes away from the station for about five minutes? Why don't you admit it's nine minutes away?

A Passenger,
This morning.


Wednesday, November 14, 2007

'Model For a Hotel' 2007, Thomas Schütte, Trafalgar Square

'Model For a Hotel' 2007, Thomas Schütte, Trafalgar Square Fourth Plinth
Originally uploaded by Loz Flowers

Labels: , , , ,

Monday, November 12, 2007

Big fire in East London. The cloud was visible from miles away, such as South London, as in my case. There's lots of photos on Flickr.

East London fire (12th November 2007)
Originally uploaded by ~harvs~

Maidstone is miles away from London.

London Olympics Site Fire
Originally uploaded by rgough

Labels: ,

Ten years ago, Shrubya thought invading Iraq was a terrible idea. Even a stopped clock tells the right time twice a day. [via The Huffington Post]

Labels: , ,

Sunday, November 11, 2007

I Have Spent Many Hours on the Interwebs

Fuck emo kids. How dare they be so young and yet so very, very stupid and ugly? I mean, here I am, coasting into my Thirties and I've worked hard on my unattractiveness but they managed it out of the gate, the little shits! How do these kids avoid making people in their vicinity explode with disgust when they walk down the street? Given the choice between an emo kid and a suicide bomber I'd definitely break bread with the inhuman amoral badly-dressed arsehole.

Sorry, I meant the suicide bomber in that last example. Damn, these headaches make it hard to concentrate...

That does it, I'm retreating to the woods, genetically cross-breeding boars and bears, and in five years time I'll be releasing a plague of these fuckers to rip emo kids arms off. Nowhere in the world will be safe. So put your Death Cab for Cutie CDs down and start learning how to sword-fight ravenous rabid animals you fuckcocks. In one thousand, eight hundred and twenty-seven days you're going to need it.


That was a party political broadcast on behalf of the Conservative Party...

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Squeeee 2007

Squeeee 2007
Originally uploaded by Loz Flowers

Labels: , , ,

Every sketch show has someone playing teenagers, Kevin and Perry, 'Brilliant!', Vicky Pollard, Lauren. The Armstrong and Miller show, poached from Channel 4 to BBC1 after a long time in the wilderness appearing in not-very-good TV shows and not-very-good adverts (Pimms O'Clock? Monkey!), approaches it differently.

Labels: , ,

Friday, November 09, 2007

Zaha Hadid Exhibition, Swarm Chandelier 2006

Zaha Hadid Exhibition, Swarm Chandelier 2006
Originally uploaded by Loz Flowers
Having been let out of school early for good behaviour I headed for the Design Museum to meet up with a friend and wander round the Matthew Williamson fashion exhibition and, once we realised you bought tickets to enter the museum as a whole rather than to see a specific exhibition we decided to look at the Zaha Hadid exhibition too. I find that my feelings about Hadid's work fall neatly in to two camps, the stuff that primarily involves straight lines and sharp 'have your eye out' corners I don't like, the generally more recent stuff, using curves and sweeps, is much more to my taste. However, while she designs some lovely exteriors the interiors of Hadid buildings that were projected on one wall were pretty uniformly ghastly. They look like some kind of stylistic prison, designed to bludgeon one's senses into unconsciousness. I'm quite interested to visit such a place now, to see if it was just a trick of the projection but they all looked as though they were utterly impractical to live or work in.

I don't know whether it's just a quirk of Hadid and Williamson or whether the Design Museum generally has a policy of allowing photography. This wins them points in my book over the Tate's attitudes. They did ask for no flash photography, fair enough, but it's not like I'm going to try and pass this work off as my own, and it's daft that the Tate don't allow photography but anyone who's a decent artist can just go in and sketch whatever they like. Time to chase up that complaint I made earlier in the year that they never replied to.

Labels: , , , ,

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Tariq Ali on the state of Pakistan as it turns sixty.

Several years after the split with Bangladesh in 1971 I wrote a book called Can Pakistan Survive? for Penguin. It was publicly denounced and banned by the dictator of the day, General Zia-ul-Haq, but pirated in many editions. I had argued that if the state carried on in the same old way, some of the minority provinces left behind might also defect, leaving the Punjab alone, strutting like a cock on a dunghill. Many of those who denounced me as a traitor and a renegade are now asking the same question. It’s too late for regrets, I tell them. The country is here to stay. And it’s not religion or the mystical ‘ideology of Pakistan’ that guarantees its survival, but its nuclear capacity and Washington.

[via Blogadoon]

Labels: , , ,

When you were at school, did you have the day when the science teacher showed you what happens when sodium meets water? Our teacher started with a small piece of sodium which fizzed when he dropped it in a beaker. Then a bigger piece which popped. Then he took us outside and dropped a chunk in a bucket of water. Ahhh, great days...

And now, several drums of sodium thrown into a lake.


Satire is dead. Bill O'Reilly, broadcast on FOX, says:

Now for the top story tonight, for the first time ever, a political party may have a network news organization in its pocket!

But wait, he's not decided to come clean about the links between the channel he works for and the GOP, no! He's claiming NBC is a tool of the Democrats.

O'REILLY: You've got now a network who's thrown down the gauntlet, is going to support the Democrats in subtle ways sometimes, in overt ways in other times. Is that a big advantage?

GAVIN: Well, you know, if that's their strategy, I don't think it's a successful one. I mean, people...

O'REILLY: No, no, but is it an advantage for the Democratic party? I don't care about NBC. Is it an advantage for the Democratic party? Is it?

GAVIN: Yes and no. I mean, on the one hand, sure. If you know, if the notion about NBC is friendlier for Democrats, great. But are they just going to reach people who already agree with them? Are they not going to reach across the aisle to people maybe who won't tune in because they might...

O'REILLY: No, it's an interesting point. But remember, it's a big cannon. I mean, it's a big, big organization.

I don't think we've seen cheek that big since Brontosaurii bestrode the world.

Labels: , , ,

Monday, November 05, 2007

ID cards plan behind schedule and soaring in cost. How come no-one saw this coming? Oh, wait...

Labels: ,

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Hampstead Heath, North-East

Hampstead Heath, North-East
Originally uploaded by Loz Flowers

Labels: ,

What You Leave Behind

Southern Pacific Lines
Originally uploaded by Lost America

Found at Lost America. A fascinating collection of photos of what remains of a previous age, as yet unconcreted over by the New.

Labels: ,

Shut Up I Hack You.

Labels: ,

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Originally uploaded by Loz Flowers


Friday, November 02, 2007

Which Presidential candidate best represents your views?

Huh, I get Kucinich with 88%, Gravel with 84% and then Obama with 83%. So Democrats make my top three, no surprise there, I'm 75% with Hillary, which did surprise me as I thought we were a lot different. I am only 44% sympatico with Giuliani.

Labels: , , ,

I have no problem with Remembrance Sunday. It's a British occasion so has largely escaped the Hallmarkisation that mars other occasions like Halloween. What does seem odd and is something that I've only noticed this year, is that the poppy wearing period seems to have dramatically lengthened. I had a disagreement with a collection woman yesterday who didn't understand that I didn't want to get a poppy and wear it almost an entire fortnight before Remembrance Sunday. Most TV presenters seem to have been wearing them for a week or two already. When Sir Ian Blair was making his statement yesterday as to why being found guilty did not actually mean anyone did anything wrong he and all his officers were kitted out with those poppies that have the green leaf accessory.

Has it always been like this or is it something new?

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Biiiiig fine for evil soldier funeral-picketing anti-gay fundamentalist fucks.

A church whose members cheered a soldier's death as "punishment" for US tolerance of homosexuality has been told to pay $10.9m (£5.2m) in damages...

Last year they caused outrage when they attended the funeral of Matthew Snyder with signs reading "Thank God for dead soldiers" and "You're going to hell".

On Wednesday, the jury ordered the church and three of its leaders to pay $2.9m in compensatory damages, and an additional $8m for invasion of privacy and for causing emotional distress...

Albert Snyder sobbed when he heard the verdict. "I hope it's enough to deter them from doing this to other families. It was not about the money. It was about getting them to stop," he said, according to Reuters news agency...

"It will take the 4th Circuit of Appeals a few minutes to reverse this silly thing," said Rev Phelps.

Labels: , ,

De Menezes shooting: Police found guilty but, as of yet, no-one is willing to stand up and take responsibility for the killing of an innocent man. It's got to be Cressida Dick and Sir Ian Blair in the frame for this one, and I'd quite happily open up the door of redundancy and kick them through, it's not like they won't find cosy private sector jobs which pay more money after they leave anyway. Plus, The Sun make it mandatory to give people like them newspaper columns to bitch about how the Government is being soft on crime but not bringing back burning at the stake for first offences.

Labels: , , , , ,

Things I Wish I Had a Camera For

Walking through the park on my way to work today I saw a squirrel and a bird that was either a large blackbird or a small crow brandishing at one another in the branches of a tree. The bird would land on one branch and the squirrel would leap across and drive it away, at which point it would flap and settle on another branch, making the squirrel go after it again. I'm not entirely sure why the squirrel didn't want to share the tree with other animals, maybe he thought that the whole neighbourhood would go downhill once the crows moved in.

A couple of weeks ago I saw a gull singlewingedly drive off a flock of crows. Their numerical advantage didn't seem to register in their dull minds so would advance one by one on the gull until it decided enough was enough. Dumb birds.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?