Posts from 21st September 2005

21
Sep 05

white of the eye

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 268 views

image (which i hope it’s ok to leech and post) of HURRICANE RITA, from steve gregory’s TROPICAL WEATHER BLOG at WEATHER UNDERGROUND* , at 4:45AM GMT SEPT 21, 2005

quotes: “the western side of the eyewall is ‘highlighted’ due to the low sun angle – and gives a true sense of ‘depth perception’ for the ring of intense thunderstorms that make up the eyewall”
and
“RITA’s central pressure is now [=5.15GMT] down to 914mb. MAX sustained flight winds are 161Kts, with sustained surface winds of 165mph -=- and gusts to 185mph. The thermal eyewall temp difference is an astounding 21°C. The pressure has been dropping at 6mb/hr which may be some form of record of its own. Furthermore, there are no signs yet that Rita has finished intensifying. This places Rita in the top 10 of all-time Atlantic Basin Storms — and in the top 4 for the Gulf of Mexico. At its peak Katrina reached 902mb.”

*which ps i strongly recommend to be added to the links**
**which pps probably could do w.updating generally tho i know geeta is currently superbusy elsewhere

THE FT TOP 23 UNEXPLAINED PHENOMENA: 22: Spontaneous Human Combustion

Blog 7Post a comment • 360 views

Yeah, yeah, yeah the wick effect. But really does some slovenly fatso in a terry toweling bathrobe dropping fag ash on himself and then slowly burning for eight hours really match up to the majesty of Spontaneous Human Combustion. Coursnot.

I was first introduced to the mystery of SHC by the Readers Digest Book OF Mysterious Happenings, my teenaged Bible of the Unexplained. They did not couch it in terms that would be consistent with the wick effect. Instead billious, brandied-up bodies, blinded with their bright blaze. The Digest was big on alliteration, but it stuck. All that were left were smoking boots and that nasty smell of charred flesh and hair.

Burning hair stinks.

In the Digest version the blazes were sudden, often at parties where petticoats went up in flames too (petticoats are not wicks). Of course a fotheringaied fire would nearly always be attached to some form of witchcraft, all well and good in my book. Other, fun theories (unlike the boring old wick effect) include thermals rising from the centre of the earth, sunspots and of course demonic possession.

The problem with the wick effect is that it attempts to explain our unexplained phenomenon with no eye for the drama of the situation. Mucky people burning to death whilst on their todd is not Spontaneous Human Combustion the way I know it. Instead it is Home Alone Burning – not unexplained, not interesting.

Anti-Fancyapint-Cloaking Device

Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 738 views

What is it with The White Horse on Rupert Street? Why can’t the Fancyapint team see it? Do they harbour a secret grudge against this most brown of Sam Smith’s hostelries? Did they get lost in the funny back stairs before? Or is it their favouritest pub ever so they don’t want to tell anyone about it?

Well its one of my favourite pubs. Certainly after seeing a film I can easily drift in to The WHite Horse, have one of their long Ayingbrau’s and mutter away happily. It really is a very brown pub you know. I particualrly like the snug, and currently the Horse bar staff are on very good bantering form.

Just don’t look for a Fancyapint link. There ain’t one.

Day 46: Acapulco:
AROUND THE WORLD IN 80 LOUSY TUNES

I Hate Music1 comment • 975 views

First thing I did when I got off the plane in Waikiki was head straight for the beach. That is where the bars are. I had never drunk a gin and tonic out of a pineapple before, and truth be told it was not a great experience. I almost poked my eye out on the umbrella provided too. It was clear we were still in America.

Just a note to budding fashion students. Grass is not a material you should make clothes out of. It burns way too easily. Still it got me out of paying my bar tab as the wheel the poor hula girl off to casualty.

I had left Crispian at the airport to plan our next flight in my desperation for a drink (they had only allowed me three G&T’s on the flight, and kept playing Muzak at me – or was it Santana – who can tell). This was increasingly worrying me as he took his time and ballsed the job up in Los Angeles. And my gin enhanced intuition was proven to be correct as he returned with two tickets to Acapulco.
“It’s in Australia, right?”
“It’s in Mexico.”
“Oh. I wondered why Mexicana was flying there. Still its on the way.”
“It is east of here, and south of the US.”
“Oh.”
“Oh?”
“Ow!”
Still, at least Mexicana had no bouze limits on their flights.

Loco In Acapulco- THE FOUR TOPS

As a child I used to imagine things a lot, often linking disparate words with images. Take the Four Tops. As a child I used to imagine this seminal soul vocal group as four milk bottle tops, silver and proudly shining in the early morning autumnal light. And then I would imagine a blue tit alighting on the milk bottle and SMASHING its tiny beak through the Four Tops to drink the milk. Ah, happy memories.

Would that a giant blue tit could smash the Four Tops, and would that they did it before Loco In Acapulco.Many of the worst songs of the eighties are linked by the Buster soundtrack and this is no exception. Consider the confluence of a terrible story, with a terrible drumming actor (Phil Collins) and some of the worst bands in history and you get tosh like Loco In Acapulco. What were the Four Tops thinking? I’ll tell you what they were probably thinking, let’s split into four different bands calling ourselves the Four Tops and tour forever.

Most soul acts from the sixties were laminated in 1971 and preserved for history to play out their old, rubbish hits. How anyone let the Four Tops (or these people calling themselves the Four Tops) make a new song is unknown. Indeed this version of the Tops probably only retained one body part and a bit of sweat from Levi Stubbs. Ironically in this one escape from singing the “Same Old Song” meant they sang a brand new, even worse song. Loco in Acapulco – the two bits don’t even RHYME!

I also always used to get Levi Stubbs and Primo Levi mixed up as a child. I wonder why.

Rock School vs School Of Rock

Do You SeePost a comment • 385 views

There is one fundamental difference between Rock School and School of Rock, and it is not that the former is a documentary whilst the latter is a feel-good comedy. Let’s break it down:

SCHOOL OF ROCK: Slightly overweight band loser teaches kids about the power of creativity and learning through fun by getting them to play rock music.

ROCK SCHOOL: Slightly overweight band loser teaches kids about the power of creativity and learning through fun by getting them to play rock music. Unfortunately this is just a distraction as the Slightly Overweight Man then enacts his revenge on the kids and the world: BY MAKING THEM PLAY FRANK ZAPPA SONGS! AND THEN MAKING THEM GO TO A FRANK ZAPPA FESTIVAL IN GERMANY AND PLAY MORE FRANK ZAPPA SONGS AND LISTEN TO FRANK ZAPPA UNTIL THEY JOIN THE ZAPPA LEGION OF THE DAMNED

One is a feel-good comedy. The other is clearly a horror movie.

WHEN SLIGHTLY YUCKY SCIENCE LETS YOU DOWN

Proven By SciencePost a comment • 240 views

ok it is the morning after my ear-candle experiment

and i have to report
i. my ear is still mildly blocked (as before) plus also
ii. i am not in any way suffering from burns
iii. my hair did not catch fire
iv. my flat did not catch fire

OTOSAN (which “helps to prevent the annoying ailments caused by a lack of hygiene” as it bluntly puts it on the box) is a fabric cone impregnated with bees-wax and propolis: you put the thin end in yr ear and light the fat end, and, while the heat gently warms and melts the wax (and also “revitalises the acupuncture points” yay!), the burning creates a “chimney effect”, known in physics as the Venturi Effect which “creates a depression within the ear, without trauma or pain” , and i guess sucks the melted earwax out in a veritable geyser of relief

“FOR EXTERNAL USE ONLY” (=don’t eat this textile cone impregnated w.wax and then set fire to it inside you)

and to stop the flame going all the way down into yr ear canal, they have patented “FLAME BREAKING RING” (=disc of cardboard silvered on one side, which sits a little way up the cone and stops the burning) (this bit worked perfectly!)

my scientifickal BRANE is puzzled by the interraction of the two processes —> surely the chimney effect cannot simultaneously suck the warmth of the flame into yr ear and suck the wax out? if there is some kind of capillary action causing liquified wax to creep up the textile of the cone, won’t the wax impregnation inhibit this? it’s true that discoloured wax that LOOKS like earwax can be found inside the cone at the bottom after the flame goes out , but perhaps it ran down rather than up? (the chimney effect if there is any would surely actually also work BETTER if you sat up straight w.the candle sticking out sideways, cz it wouldn’t be working against gravity)

anyway i didn’t feel ANY warmth in my ear or ANY change in the wax blockage sensation so i guess the hataz are right after all :(

however the leaflet does contain a further intriguing text: “The Earth is ours. Let’s make something to live better.” Translation: WHO BUILT THE MOON?! OTOSAN!!

I Heart The 70s All Over Again

Do You SeePost a comment • 343 views

I wrote this in June, during the NFT’s awesome Antonioni season. Anyhoo, it makes no sense at all now that ‘The Passenger’ is getting a re-release, but maybe I don’t want Antonioni’s film to become another ‘Big Red One’, a monument to the Good Old Days, so I post it here anyway.
Being radically subversive of the unified self (or insert other ’70s buzz-phrases, I have no idea), there’s something amusing about a ‘director’s cut’ of the film, but as far as I’m concerned, the more footage the better, so yay! for the extended versh.