Posts from 28th September 2005

Sep 05


Proven By SciencePost a comment • 710 views

For those who are getting worried that the book is just a tease vis a vis moon builders, note there are 14 Chapters in Who Built The Moon, the tease is part of the game. Chapter 6: entitled The Living Earth continues the tease. Apropos to nothing this chapter is about plate tectonics, how Earth is the only planet we know that has plate tectonics, and why.

Remember the Big Whack? Well for the moon to be made of Earth ejecta, that had to come from somewhere. Our authors take two unrelated theories (Big Whack and Plate Tectonics) and smush them together – even though the book does not believe in the big whack. This is confusing. Nevertheless, their argument goes:

  1. Big Whack needed to remove mass from earth
  2. Plate Tectonics need the plates to be separate and have gaps in between.

Thus the Moon came from the bits in between the plates. Not only is this theory a bit silly, it seems to have little basis on any scientific theory and THEY DON’T EVEN BELIEVE IN THE BIG WHACK. No suggestion on who built the moon and why the added plate tectonics – except to suggest that without PT the Earth would be dull and therefore a lousy place to evolve in.


FT + New York London Paris MunichPost a comment • 265 views

scorsese wz a good choice of dylan doc-director for any number of reasons of course, but one might just be the way BE MY BABY kicks off mean streets – seeing as MS has a clear gift for making you rehear songs

not much to say abt the portrait of zimmy hisself (except that he came across more personable than i ever recall before), but one genuinely astonishing little bit of TV clippage = of ODETTA

who i had – unheard and based i guess on something i read years back – filed in my head as “worthy political folkie”: well in the song in question., odetta (beyond rhyme or easy reason ) was punctuating her song with this chilling human dogbark, and it instantly made me think of that phrase g.marcus uses in his basement tapes book, “the old weird america”

similarly the utterly eery wail of john jacob niles:

dylan’s complicated break with acoustic guthrie-land is one of those turns in history which calls down the huge condescension of posterity on the pore catcalling purists — ie it’s reconfigured as a kind of rockism-avant-le-lettre — but since BD’s hung around, ornery and unplaceable as ever, for another 40 years, bobby d gets to re-redefine his “commercial” move as a bid to recover the sheer unbiddable oddness of some of his forebears from the polite gentrification and de-weirdification of folk that he (maybe)* intuited was going on in the mid-60s…

*(forty years is plenty of time to work out a good line in hindsight) (and while i feel sorry for the folkie pol-purists who got left behind, i have to say dear GOD joan baez is a dreadful dreadful singer)

People Boycott Film In Which People Are Portrayed In a Negative Light

Do You SeePost a comment • 264 views

Okay, not ALL people, but flight attendants. Or as well like to call ’em, trolley dollies aka air stewardesses. Apparently the Jodie Foster “The Lady Vanishes” rip-off Flightplan portrays some air stewards as being rude, insensitive and unable to cope with the machinations of a hugely unlikely plot. Boo-hoo.

What next? Criminals boycotting films because it shows them in a bad light? Pah.


Pumpkin PublogPost a comment • 310 views

As in PIES from the ungooglable pseudo-pret café chain EAT, rather than what was written on the pitch-side hoardings in “billy the fish” strips.

Unfortunately as I reached the counter the turkey and stuffing ones sold out, and I didn’t fancy a “fisherman’s pie” so I had a SOSSIDGE AND MASH PIE which was a treat for pie theorists* consisting as it did ov:

Thin pastry case with poppy seeds in
Layer of spicy/herby sausage meat
Layer, some might say lid, of potato with grain mustard, not quite at the consistancy of mash in my opinion, cooked through but a touch al dente (not a bad thing), more crushed than mashed.
Melted cheese and a cherry (tomato) on top.

It wasn’t as dry as it sounds either, the sossiemeat was quite juicy. The only thing really missing was a big dollop of red sauce. Also it comes in a cute little box like those ones you see in american films that have chinese in. All in all a success, but at £3.75 more of a treat than an everyday option I think.

*I know it’s a touch early in the year for pie theorising, but there was a certain nip in the air this morning, that made me think “ah piepiepiepie discussions are almost upon us again”…

Mysterious Stuff – The Equator

Blog 71 comment • 1,743 views

I’m not a scientific guy. The physics questions on University Challenge make me feel nauseous and my continuing ignorance is only validated by the Oxfam models who answer them.

But, with the equator, I want to understand. One foot north of the equator, water empties anti-clockwise, one foot south it empties clockwise. Directly over, it goes straight down with nay a swirl in either direction. Standing on the equator, you can balance an egg on the end of a nail and you weigh considerably less.

The scientific cause of this is the Coriolis effect, which (as I understand it) is a deflection of air and is therefore potentially under the influence of local factors. I’ve tried it and seen both northern and southern hemispheres draining water the ‘wrong’ way. I’m also told that the equator is constantly on the move. In Ecuador, there is a town called Middle of the World which was built directly over the equator. The equator then left town.

I’ve seen these experiments performed on two continents with a bunch of the most sceptical people you could ever meet. If it was manipulation, it certainly wasn’t obvious. How easy is it to drain water without a swirl when it is liberally poured on high? Have you ever tried balancing an egg on a nail? Why, when weighing yourself on the equator are you lighter than a foot in either direction? The cake fans of the party were unconcerned with the science.

WHO REVIEWS #7: Vampire hunters in Stoke-on-Trent?

The Brown WedgePost a comment • 253 views

GOTH OPERA by Paul Cornell, featuring the Fifth Doctor, Tegan and Nyssa… or is it?!

“The age of humanity on this world has come to an end. The long night is starting. The age of the undead is upon us”.

First things first. You’ll be hearing more about this Who author. As my sickness devours me, certain authors keep returning to my mind. And the maddest, most menktastic, the utter fruitloopiest of the lot is none other than Mr Paul Cornell; the dude responsible for putting the Eighth Doctor into the Realm of the Faeries and turning one of the Doctor’s then companions into a half-woman, half-TARDIS whilst the Brigadier embarks on a post-traumatic ‘relationship’ with Queen Mab… but I’ll get onto that another time! This is one of his books in the Missing Adventures series, which really gives Cornell the chance to go absolutely head over heels in Gallifreyan history whilst still keeping a brisk place on the ‘current’ plot in 1994’s Manchester featuring the Time Lady restored Vampire Messiah and his followers… which happen to include a Trakenite by the name of Nyssa. LIEK OMG! Nyssa = vampz0r one one one!

We meet the Fifth Doctor playing cricket in Australia, where Nyssa is attacked by a demonic Child and Tegan fights off a 40s style Vampire called Jeremy by thrusting the works of Primo Levi at him. Having never read the sod I can only wonder if that in 2005’s London, having faith in the Seal of Rassilon would be enough to create a faith-based assault on the senses of a modern day Child of the Night but I digress – readers, methinks you should stick with the garlic shots. Whilst Nyssa is in the thrall of the Change and taken to Vampire Messiah Yarven’s lair, the Doctor and Tegan find Manchester in fear of the numbers of recent missing. Trying to track down Nyssa, they find the Yarven has teamed up with a Time Lady from the Doctor’s Prydonian academica, by the name of Ruath to plunge the world into eternal darkness/create world of vampires yadayda, I mean, we’ve all seen Buffy haven’t we? Vampire tropes are often disappointingly familiar, but the motives for such eternal darkness prove to be entirely different for the Vampire Messiah and his rescuer. Whilst Ruath is convinced she is changing the destiny of the Time Lords for the better, by fusing their already 98% vampire genetic material into 100% undead, that the Time Lords can again gain superiority over the universe and change their foreboding future, Yarven plans to take Gallifrey for himself, and make the Undead free to rule ALL SPACE AND TIME – wooooo!! WHO SHALL WIN EH READERS? Far be it from me to spoil the surprise. Yet I can exclusively reveal that an event happens in the end of the book, appearing to have no effect, but when the same thing happens in Planet of the Giants it has rather hem hem, SIZEABLE effects if you know what I mean, so beware if you’re some kind of continuity freakzone.

Yet, despite the presence of vampires and gothic castles etc, this book still feels a bit much; the ancient Gallifreyan vampire cults, the bow-ships of Rassilon and the epilogue featuring Romana reading the story of Omega and The Other* casting the Great Vampire out of all space and time are fabulous, but each time we follow Tegan casting around Manchester trying to feebly figure out what the Doctor figured out 20 minutes ago the story drags. A deliberate attempt to remain true to the televised Fifth and Tegan adventures, I wonder. But still, whilst the lacks the Gothic Horrors of Stephen Marley’s Managra, Goth Opera remains a rather good read, if you can bear the somewhat relentlessness of th33 VAMPz0r and get to the REALLY juicy bits.

8 bowships out of 10.

*who is TOTALLY the Doctor in his pre-incarnations IF YOU ASK ME!! Ka Faraq Gatri roxx0-rz!!!! And if you get THAT reference then you are SUCH A GEEK.