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The things I shop for

sealI’ve had a frustrating week on eBay. I found someone with a collection of old pigments (from Cornelissen, no less!), exactly what I’m looking for, but he won’t put them in the mail because “Royal Mail is awfully strict about powders these days.”

Same for a courier. Sad. I’m hoping he goes away and thinks about it and greed outweighs fear.

So now I’m shopping for replica wax seals. The seals monarchs put on documents were sometimes the size of dinner plates. We have one or two in the collection at work.

You can buy museum-quality casts for not much. This is a small one of Liz the Oneth. Quite reasonable.

I guess the idea is that we buy some replica seals and I make casts of the casts, so kids can handle them.

Yeah, no. I’m not bigtime into kids, but if you want that sweet, sweet grant money…

January 17, 2018 — 10:06 pm
Comments: 9


I thought this story sounded off at first, but it was just badly reported. This woman informally raises monarch butterflies, (which explains why she had a spare wing lying around). One of her lot tore his right wing up in the chrysalis, so she glued a spare wing in its place.

Life expectancy is 2 days to 5 months, so the fact that this wing probably won’t age that well may not be an issue. He may well live to experience reproductive success, the goal of all biological entities.

Except me. A little less of me on this planet, please.

Anyway, little dude successfully flew, so yay, I guess.

January 16, 2018 — 7:38 pm
Comments: 9

Presented without remark



This song came across my feed today. I present it without comment. Never heard it before, not going to favorite it, but I am — I admit this — an unironic, unapologetic fan of R Crumb and the Cheap Suit Serenaders.

Yes, I have some inkling what a perv Crumb is. Please not to be telling me details. I like this music.

I have all his albums but the first one which, as far as I was aware, was never re-issued on CD.

But wait — I’m wrong! Looky here. It was reissued. In 2002. In…Japan?

Oh, Japan! I ain’t paying £250 for a Robert Crumb album.

January 15, 2018 — 8:58 pm
Comments: 13

Dead Pool 106: We All Gots de Flu Edition

UnkaWill wins 105 with Erica Garner. She’s activist the daughter of Eric Garner, the “I can’t breathe!” guy. She recently learned she had a congenital heart defect of some kind. So nothing at all fun about this story, I guess.

Still, a dick’s a dick!


0. Rule Zero (AKA Steve’s Rule): your pick has to be living when picked. Also, nobody whose execution date is circled on the calendar. Also, please don’t kill anybody. Plus (Pupster’s Rule) no picking someone who’s only famous for being the oldest person alive.

1. Pick a celebrity. Any celebrity — though I reserve the right to nix picks I never heard of (I don’t generally follow the Dead Pool threads carefully, so if you’re unsure of your pick, call it to my attention).

2. We start from scratch every time. No matter who you had last time, or who you may have called between rounds, you have to turn up on this very thread and stake your claim.

3. Poaching and other dirty tricks positively encouraged.

4. Your first choice sticks. Don’t just blurt something out, m’kay? Also, make sure you have a correct spelling of your choice somewhere in your comment. These threads get longish and I use search to figure out if we have a winner.

5. It’s up to you to search the thread and make sure your choice is unique. I’m waayyyy too lazy to catch the dupes. Popular picks go fast.

6. The pool stays open until somebody on the list dies. Feel free to jump in any time. Noobs, strangers, drive-bys and one-comment-wonders — all are welcome.

7. If you want your fabulous prize, you have to entrust me with a mailing address. If you’ve won before, send me your address again. I don’t keep good records.

8. The new DeadPool will begin 6pm WBT (Weasel’s Blog Time) the Friday after the last round is concluded.

The winner, if the winner chooses to entrust me with a mailing address, will receive an Official Certificate of Dick Winning and a small original drawing on paper suffused with elephant shit particles. Because I’m fresh out of fairy shit particles.

January 12, 2018 — 6:00 pm
Comments: 92

Oh, my


I hope you guys are following the Google lawsuit that dropped Monday. Executive summary: white guy sues Google for discriminating against all things sane and normal. The Federalist has a good taster.

If you ask yourself how long the company can go on like this, I’m afraid the answer is a long, long time. Its structures are long since built and self-perpetuating. It has the kind of money some first world countries would envy. It can shamble on, a golem filled with flittering bugs, almost indefinitely. And the other Silicon Valley bigs are no better, apparently.

This will not end well, but it may end amusingly.

So, I went into work for a couple of hours today. I bumped into several people in town: everyone’s either sick with, coming down with or already had this bug. I got kind of caught up, anyway, and I’m staying home tomorrow.

All the better to bring you Dead Pool Round 106.

January 11, 2018 — 9:35 pm
Comments: 16

Hangin’ in there

Unlike poor old Ioseph Beaver here, we’re still hanging on. In fact, I’m feeling much recovered — except I keep dropping off to sleep and waking up hours later. I always thought sleepy sickness would suit me to a T.

Picture is from September 2016, the last time we shared a flu. That one was much worse and wiped out Uncle B’s birthday.

p.s. Yes, I’ll take Erica Garner. Unkawill wins the Dead Pool. I hope I remember to queue up the new one in time!

January 10, 2018 — 9:50 pm
Comments: 8

We’re fine…


Just catching some epic Z’s. Oh, did I mention I gave the thing to Uncle B? But of course I did! I think I must have a milder variant, though — I don’t feel as sick as the others sound.

If the congestion isn’t too bad (it isn’t) and I don’t have a headache or nausea (I don’t), I kind of enjoy the whole ‘sleeping the clock around’ thing. I usually struggle with killer insomnia; being on a drifty, floaty cloud of semi-consciousness for several days running is almost a treat.

Also — the books I’ve read!

January 9, 2018 — 10:11 pm
Comments: 8



There are several nasty lurgies going around, and I finally caught one. I don’t think it can be the really awful one (there’s an Aussie flu that’s killing people) as I’m already feeling much better.

I came down with it Saturday night and I’ve done my best to stay asleep ever since. That’s my usual plan for dealing with adversity: sleep until it gets bored and wanders off.

The Brit equivalent of Nyquil is called Nite Nurse, and it’s just as coma-inducing. I’ve been drifting in and out of consciousness, having conversations with dead people, reading cryptic notes (you aren’t supposed to be able to read in your dreams, which is why they’re so cryptic, I guess).

If there’s a way to open a portal between dimensions, its name is Nyquil.

Now the question is, once I feel up to it, when do I dare go in? I work with some terribly, terribly old people. I’d feel awful if I inadvertently. You know. Killed somebody.



January 8, 2018 — 7:50 pm
Comments: 20

Happy #nationalbirdday


No, seriously, it’s National Bird Day. In England, I assume from my Twitter feed.

I don’t usually send people to Twitter, but Brits take their birds seriously and there are some genuinely awesome photos and videos being posted. Go there.

Welp, back to the routine. See you Monday!

January 5, 2018 — 7:41 pm
Comments: 12

Something, something, fat Israeli hedgehogs


This little feller was brought into an Israeli animal rescue because he was too fat to run away. He weighed 1.6 kilos when he arrived; he should be 600-900 grams. They’re seeing a lot of this. They think the hedgies are getting into food left out for stray cats.

Stray cats and hedgehogs: two things I don’t really associate with the Holy Land, somehow.

I mean, I knew about African pygmy hedgehogs, which are the breed they make into domestic pets, but I generally thing of hedgies as British, Beatrix Potter-y things.

But no. I am wrong.

Hedgehogs are a food source in many cultures. Hedgehogs were eaten in Ancient Egypt and some recipes of the Late Middle Ages call for hedgehog meat. Hedgehogs are traded throughout Eurasia and Africa for traditional medicine and witchcraft. In the Middle East and especially among Bedouins, hedgehog meat is considered medicinal, and thought to cure rheumatism and arthritis. They are also said to cure a variety of illnesses and disorders from tuberculosis to impotence. In Morocco, inhaling the smoke of the burnt skin or bristles is a purported remedy for fever, male impotence, and urinary illnesses. The blood is sold as a cure for ringworm, cracked skin and warts and the flesh is eaten as a remedy for witchcraft. Romani people still eat hedgehogs, boiled or roasted, and also use the blood and the fat for its supposed medicinal value. During the 1980s, “hedgehog-flavour” crisps were introduced in Britain, although the product did not contain any hedgehog.


January 4, 2018 — 10:02 pm
Comments: 10