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Nice one

I dunno, this just popped into my head.

Per the article I linked yesterday, Obama supposedly warned Cantor “don’t call my bluff.” I’m sure he meant to say “don’t think I’m bluffing” because the Smartest President EVAR surely knows that the absolute crucial element of a successful bluff is to convince everyone around the table you totally, totally ARE NOT bluffing.


Good weekend, all!

p.s. I’ve just finished my third round through Dead Space 2 (loved it!). Help me choose my next computer game (platform: PC). I want something that’s been out for a while (no monies), something immersive and visually stunning. I choose things getting killed over puzzles; spooky games over pretty ones. Hate side-scrollers, love first person shooters. But I’ll adore anything that’s a pleasure to look at.

Despite the high ratings, I thought Amnesia looked stupid (if I get bored in the middle of your trailer, you’re doing it wrong). I’m leaning toward Batman: Arkham Asylum (£14.99). Or maybe Machinarium (£7.49). But, really, I’m kind of virgin territory for modern games — I haven’t played any of the major franchises since, like, Quake.

p.p.s. Christopher Taylor has a new book ($1.99) — and this one is for e-reader, finally!

July 15, 2011 — 9:06 pm
Comments: 67

Takin’ his ball, goin’ home

Sung to the tune of “fired up, ready to go!”

The backstory: Obama may (or may not) have stormed out of the budget meeting last night. Ace thinks it was premeditated theater, but I’m not so sure. That weird remark to the effect that “Ronald Reagan wouldn’t have put up with this”…what was that about?

Me, I think it made him look petulant and amateurish, but I suspect his side is eating it up. In fact I know so. Here’s my takeaway from the Politico article:

“Obama lit him up. Cantor sat in stunned silence,” said an official in the meeting. “It was incredible. If the public saw Obama he would win in a landslide.”

Bolding mine. Two things strike me about that: 1) they see everything — absolutely everything — through the lens of Obama’s re-election bid and 2) they think America would just love-LOVE-LOVE to see President Prettyniceguy morph into President Screamingjerk.

They’re wrong on the second point, and the first point scares me juiceless. Take it from a small, damp island on the edge of Europe: we are all of us together, trembling on the edge of an utter economic meltdown. And nobody has the slightest idea what that means.

Addendum: the word has gone out to hang the budget impasse around Eric Cantor’s neck. Let’s hope that works as well as that time they sank Limbaugh and that other time they made Palin irrelevant.

July 14, 2011 — 4:23 pm
Comments: 28

I gotcher three words right here

What did we do before the internet? How on earth did we disseminate badly drawn comics with brain-hurty punchlines? Because I live for this shit.

Really. I derive huge enjoyment from entertainment products that would never have survived the tender mercies of a proper editor. In a better world, I would drunkenly browse LOLcats and homemade YouTubes until my mousin’ finger fell off.

Anyhoo, this is from a webcomic called Three Word Phrase. Must be fairly recent; I read through the whole collection in a half hour. The dog one isn’t my favorite (though I like it), it’s the one that best shrunk down to Weasel Blog size and stayed legible.

I think this is my favorite. Or this one. For the first couple of years I used email, I was pretty sure this is exactly what happens after you hit SEND. Or go here if anyone has ever patiently explained to you that the Death card doesn’t mean what you expect it to.

He relies heavily on the Five P’s – pee, poo, puke, penises and pudenda, so it’s also a mind-expanding intellectual romp.

To be fair, it’s more about butts than anything else, but that would’ve screwed my alliteration. And no, thank you, I didn’t want to use “posterior.”

By the way, I am so stealing “I want this because of reasons.”

July 13, 2011 — 10:23 pm
Comments: 20

Um hm. I expected as much.

Much to the surprise of absolutely no-one, the fox came back last night. I set up the wildlife cam to point to the chicken runs, knowing the likelihood.

Click the picture to be whisked away to YouTube and see for yourself. It’s cut together from five clips (the camera shoots 15-second chunks), all in quick succession around 3am.

He’s a handsome brute, isn’t he?

July 12, 2011 — 7:51 pm
Comments: 26

Why did the chicken cross the road?

To get away from the thumping great fox.

No, no…everyone’s fine. Just. The chickens let out a terrible squawking a few hours past, and I ran to the window just in time to see Lucia flap by, followed by Vita, followed by a sleek young fox.

I yelled “FOX!” and hit the door, which was enough to turn him around. Bastard. He was within inches of getting one of my nice birds.

I scooped up Vita, found Violet (O clever bird, she had flown perpendicular to the commotion), checked that Mapp was in her usual place (sitting on the nest trying to hatch a lump of wood), but of Lucia…nothing.

She had lit out up the stairs and into the driveway into forbidden territory. Our drive is fairly long and lined with trees and shrubs and long grass and stinging nettles. There must be a thousand places a panicky chicken could lay low. We spent an hour walking up and down the drive calling her name and listening for the cluck before Uncle B spotted her — clear across the road, over the fence and into a sheep field.

Busy road. Lucky chicken. She was allll kinds of freaked out when I went to collect her and did a little panic dance every time a car went by. So really, having no other tools at my disposal, I shoved her under my shirt to get her back across. I’m not sure either of us will recover from the indignity.

Got back to find our outside cat, the unfixed male, had peed a streak of scent mark right across the face of my banjo. Is that a compliment?

July 11, 2011 — 9:10 pm
Comments: 29

Scientists discover the point of sex

Apparently, it helps us survive the cooties. Where would we be without science?

Yeah, that’s all I got. It’s Friday. I’m going to go play video games.

Good weekend, everyone!

July 8, 2011 — 9:52 pm
Comments: 28

I’m slipping…

Oh, hell — did I really let not one, but TWO of you pick a death row inmate in the Dead Pool? What’s more, EZnSF helpfully picked “That guy on death row in Texas” and then Warplanner made four picks, no doubt all of them under sentence of death, but at least he gave their goddamn names.

If they really do off the guy tonight, I can’t see any way around it — steel cage match. Oooohhh…there’s so going to be a new Rule Zero next time.

Y’all are lucky I put my zither banjo back together tonight after weeks of gluing things and polishing bits. The head finally dried this afternoon, ready for stringing.

Turns out, gut strings aren’t tied off for you and you have to learn to tie knots.

Yeah. Kinda busy.

Update: ruling — nah. Dead Pool is still on. Allen reminds me I smacked him upside the head for trying to pick a death row inmate once before.

July 7, 2011 — 10:34 pm
Comments: 45


On Saturday, we went to a fête in a little church just outside Rye. At 500 years old, it’s one of the youngest Churches of Romney Marsh, but it’s more or less what it was when it was built — no electricity or running water, just a brick box in the middle of nowhere with a steeple.

These guys were the entertainment. They research local (Kent and Sussex) church music of the Georgian period, and then they perform it. Really well. In appropriate costume.

I’ve been to my fair share of Civil War re-enactments (I dated a gunsmith in High School), but this was altogether different. They were in the right place, doing the right things, totally looking perfect. It was eerie to witness, I tell you.

I held off posting this because I was hoping to find a recording of one particular song they did. It was a Primitive Methodist thing, which is like proto-evangelicals. It was a jaunty, happy, cheerful tune.

No, seriously, the melody was super upbeat.

And the lyrics were all smashing you up with iron bars and dragging you to the lake of fire where your eyeballs melt and run down your face in God’s thirsty scarlet vengeance of SCARY DOOM. I can’t find a recording, but I’m pretty sure this is the hymn.

All I could think of was Brave Sir Robin.

July 6, 2011 — 9:54 pm
Comments: 21


What the Sam Hill happened to this bunny?! He showed up yesterday on the wildlife camera.

Kind of hard to see in the stills; a little easier in the full-sized video. Dude is torn to bits. Deep, old gouges down his sides, his face looks like he snogged a cheese grater. His hippity-hop is a little fuckity-wukt, but he’s getting around okay.

Makes me feel better about the prospects of the baby buns I keep taking away from herself. There’s a whole nest of them in the hedge behind the chicken house. Charlotte has dropped several at my feet, where they drag themselves painfully along the grass with their front legs until I go for the Adorable Bun Dispatching Shovel. Then they suddenly remember they have back legs and bound off.

I’m getting quite fond of this particular litter of bunnies. When I spend a lazy hour of an afternoon playing banjo in the garden, little buns come out and gambol about on the lawn. I shit thee not. It’s like the Disney Kool Aid Acid Test.

I guess they don’t associate banjo music with human activity.

July 5, 2011 — 9:41 pm
Comments: 38

Happy Fourth, ever’body!

Burgers, beer, fireworks…we did the lot!

We bought the fireworks at a news agent in town who is the famous local source for fireworks. Oh, it’s legal (Uncle B was always amazed that I could legally buy a .357 magnum handgun in Rhode Island, but not a roman candle). At least, the stuff he’s selling over the counter is legal.

We bought the £10 garden collection and the vendor threw in what was probably a £5 rocket “in honor of Ronald Reagan.” Our grand finale. And very nice it was, too (though at gone 11 I’m not sure the neighbors would agree).

They’re not as far gone here as the Daily Mail tells you, you know.

Happy Independence Day, ya’ll (or, as Uncle B calls it, We Finally Got Rid of You Religious Nutters Day).

Edit to add: I misunderstood what the shopkeep said to me. He gave us the rocket in honor of the statue of Ronald Reagan they unveiled in London yesterday.

July 4, 2011 — 10:41 pm
Comments: 27