23 Mar 2006

15 Mar 2006

Catching up

The first in an irregular series of ‘things I wanted to post but couldn’t, thanks to my ISP’ is a nice little quote from Doctor Who writer Paul Cornell:

It’s only in SF fandoms that there’s a special word for the texts that include relationships. In the rest of human culture, there’s a special word for those that don’t.

13 Mar 2006

Hope you missed me!

Because I’m back. After a couple of weeks of trouble, I’m here again, though it seems some of my recent posts have disappeared. I’ll give you the full story another time, but just a warning that there may be another brief disappearance in the future, as after the hassle I’ve had to go through to get this back, I’m going to switch to another hosting company.

09 Oct 2005

07 Oct 2005

Let Britain be eaten first!

It seems Stephen Green’s success at getting himself and his delusions into the public consciousness has inspired other religious movements to follow in his footsteps. So, please welcome Cthulhu Voice who are very keen to remind us all that there is no escape, the Elder Gods are coming to eat us all and our only hope is that we might just get the chance to be eaten first. Cthulhu Fhtagn! (via Randy McDonald)

Then there is the matter of the education of our children. It is clearly unfair that the geometry they are taught does not address credible alternatives such as My favourite non-Euclidean form. The controversy must be taught, even at the risk of driving the little darlings insane.

06 Oct 2005

An argument missed

Just reading this post on Crooked Timber about the latest attempt to prove that someone else wrote the plays of Shakespeare (the comments are amusing) and had a thought - if I was a Home Office spin doctor, would I be able to find some way to use this an argument in favour of identity cards? I can just see Charles Clarke now, proclaiming that we should do this for the sake of future generations, and that the necessity of having to enter your ID details into a computer before you were able to write on it was a small price to me for future generations to be certain about the authorship of the great works of the 21st century.

The way we live now

Does anyone else wonder what sort of world we’re living in when not only does the US Senate find it necessary to pass a bill saying ‘torture’s bad and we shouldn’t do it‘, but it’s also newsworthy and the following quote isn’t some bizarre parody?

Bush administration officials say the move would be restrictive, and limit its fight against terrorism.

02 Oct 2005

Someone has to win

I’ve started playing online poker for fun, so when I heard about this and discovered it was free, I couldn’t resist…

Poker Championship

I have registered to play in the
Online Poker Blogger Championship!

This event is powered by PokerStars.

Registration code: 9389913

30 Sep 2005

Recommended for your viewing pleasure

I’ll write more about it in my TV review column this weekend, because the second series started over in the US this week, but for those of you on this side of the Atlantic, I wanted to let you know that the excellent Veronica Mars begins on Living TV on Monday at 6.05pm and if you happen to be in and happen to have Living TV available to you, I heartily recommend you watch it. It’s excellent TV, well-written, beautifully acted, with twists and turns you probably won’t see coming and a season-long mystery that’s not only interesting and involving but actually gets resolved at the end of the series, rather than just leaving you hanging with the vague promise that maybe, someday, the writers might bother to come up with an answer themselves.

But, don’t just take my word for it about how good Veronica Mars is. See what Joss Whedon (he’s the guy who created Buffy, Angel and Firefly, amongst others) has to say about it:

I can no longer restrain myself. Best. Show. Ever. Seriously, I’ve never gotten more wrapped up in a show I wasn’t making, and maybe even more than those. Crazy crisp dialogue. Incredibly tight plotting. Big emotion, I mean BIG, and charsimatic actors and I was just DYING from the mystery and the relationships and PAIN, this show knows from pain and no, I don’t care, laugh all you want, I had to share this. These guys know what they’re doing on a level that intimidates me. It’s the Harry Potter of shows. There. I said it. People should do whatever they can to check out this first season so the second won’t be a spoiler fest.

Oh, and Kevin Smith likes it too:

This is, hands-down, the best show on television right now, and proof that TV can be far better than cinema. The cast is pretty uniformly excellent, and the dialogue crackles. Excellent characterization – even with the day-players – makes it the most engaging new show I’ve seen since “Degrassi: The Next Generation”, but the heart and soul of the show is the relationship between Father and Daughter, Keith and Veronica Mars.

The fact that Kristen Bell and Enrico Colantoni (“Those poor people…” from the severely underrated “Galaxy Quest”) weren’t Emmy nominated proves how fucking out of touch and useless the Emmy Awards are to begin with. The tender and witty repartee between these two wonderful actors makes you want to be a better parent. And a big shout-out to Jason Dohring’s Logan Echolls - a masterfully designed and performed nemesis whose twists and turns are always credible.

The show is basically an amalgam of some of the best TV ever produced, with each formula improved upon – chiefly, one clearly sees a “Twin Peaks” influence, with the year-long mystery surrounding the murder of party girl Lilly Kane. But whereas I always felt the brilliant “Twin Peaks” should’ve been a maxi-series, wrapping up the Laura Palmer murder in twelve episodes, “Mars” manages to thread the needle with the Lilly Kane murder so well, it never feels marginalized or played out over 22 episodes. And unlike “Peaks”, when the murderer is revealed and the storyline wrapped up in the final ep, it doesn’t feel like the show’s outlived its relevance; thanks to the crisp writing, the deft fleshing-out of the “Mars” universe and the endearing cast, you’re left wanting Veronica’s story to continue.

In fact, both of them like it so much, they’re going to appear in the second season at some point.

That concludes this advertisement. We now return you to your regular blank space.

25 Sep 2005

20 Sep 2005

14 Sep 2005

06 Sep 2005

“A man who, in his own words, cacks himself in front of the Lord.”

For some reason, the news today reminds me of the special report from the first episode of On The Hour:

“(He) presents the evidence to a committee - myself - and I decide who is to be tried.”
“And who else is on this committee?”
“I’ve just told you.”
“Just you?”
“Myself and my conscience.”

02 Sep 2005

31 Aug 2005

The parodic mode

I can remember in the early-to-mid 90s when the first satirical articles and jokes about Microsoft’s plans for world domination began to spread, and it wasn’t long after that before the general perception of them as rather evil became widespread.

So, does the Onion headline “Google Announces Plan To Destroy All Information It Can’t Index” herald the same process beginning for them?

30 Aug 2005

27 Aug 2005