Month: March 2006 Page 1 of 2

In the beginning…

God created the heavens and the earth (The Bible)

A long time ago… Luke Skywalker and Han Solo lead a rebellion against the evil empire(Star Wars)
4,000,000BC Aliens leave monolith on Earth (2001: A Space Odyssey)
1,000,000BC Loana faces dinosaurs to be with Tumak, a caveman banished from his savage tribe, and then from her gentler group of cave people (One Million Years BC)
San Dimas, Ca – A phone box briefly arrives from the future containing Bill S Preston and Ted ‘Theodore’ Logan (Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure)

The Movie Timeline.

(Via Whedonesque.)

The Wisdom of Terry Pratchett.

Build a man a fire, and he’ll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he’ll be warm for the rest of his life.

Five exclamation marks, the sure sign of an insane mind.

People who are rather more than six feet tall and nearly as broad across the shoulders often have uneventful journeys. People jump out at them from behind rocks then say things like, “Oh. Sorry. I thought you were someone else.”

The universe, they said, depended for its operation on the balance of four forces which they identified as charm, persuasion, uncertainty and bloody-mindedness.

You can’t trample infidels when you’re a tortoise. I mean, all you could do is give them a meaningful look.

In ancient times cats were worshipped as gods; they have not forgotten this.

In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.

Genius is always allowed some leeway, once the hammer has been pried from its hands and the blood has been cleaned up.

It’s not worth doing something, unless you were doing something that someone somewere, would much rather you weren’t doing.

Everything starts somewhere, although many physicists disagree.

Your affected air of cowardice does not fool me.

Ridcully assumed that anything people had time to write down couldn’t be that important.

Susan stopped. Of course someone would be that stupid. Some humans would do anything to see if it was possible to do it. If you put a large switch in some cave somewhere, with a sign on it saying ‘End-of-the-World Switch. PLEASE DO NOT TOUCH’, the paint wouldn’t even have time to dry.

‘Sometimes I really think people ought to have to pass a proper exam before they’re allowed to be parents. Not just the practical, I mean.’

But still, one of the most basic rules for survival on any planet is never to upset someone wearing black leather.[*]
[*]This is why protesters against the wearing of animal skins by humans unaccountably fail to throw their paint over Hell’s Angels.

His movements could be called cat-like, except that he did not stop to spray urine up against things.

The truth is that even big collections of ordinary books distort space, as can readily be proved by anyone who has been around a really old-fashioned secondhand bookshop, one of those that look as though they were designed by M. Escher on a bad day and has more staircases than storeys and those rows of shelves which end in little doors that are surely too small for a full-sized human to enter. The relevant equation is: Knowledge = power = energy = matter = mass; a good bookshop is just a genteel Black Hole that knows how to read.

The three rules of the Librarians of Time and Space are: 1) Silence; 2) Books must be returned no later than the date last shown; and 3) Do not interfere with the nature of causality.

The only things known to go faster than ordinary light is monarchy, according to the philosopher Ly Tin Weedle. He reasoned like this: you can’t have more than one king, and tradition demands that there is no gap between kings, so when a king dies the succession must therefore pass to the heir *instantaneously*. Presumably, he said, there must be some elementary particles — kingons, or possibly queons — that do this job, but of course succession sometimes fails if, in mid-flight, they strike an anti-particle, or republicon. His ambitious plans to use his discovery to send messages, involving the careful torturing of a small king in order to modulate the signal, were never fully expanded because, at that point, the bar closed.

“Sodomy non sapiens,” said Albert under his breath.
“What does that mean?”
“Means I’m buggered if I know.”

Sheep are stupid, and have to be driven. But goats are intelligent, and need to be led.

“Did I hear things, or can that little dog speak?” said Dibbler.
“He says he can’t,” said Victor.
Dibbler hesitated. “Well,” he said, “I suppose he should know.”

Never build a dungeon you wouldn’t be happy to spend the night in yourself. The world would be a happier place if more people remembered that.

Nanny Ogg had a pragmatic attitude to the truth; she told it if it was convenient and she couldn’t be bothered to make up something more interesting.

Doubt it.

Regarding “modernistic” architecture:

“But modernism of the heroic period, from 1920 to 1939, is dead, and it died first in the blockhouses of Utah beach and the Siegfried line. Yet in its heyday between the wars, modernism was a vast utopian project, and perhaps the last utopian project we will ever see, now that we are well aware that all utopias have their dark side.”

See the full article at The Guardian.

(Via BoingBoing.)


Postmodernism Lesson Plans: Star Trek.

A sample lesson plan for a Purdue U. class about examples of postmodernism in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Basically, explains the “We are You” statement the captured borg that gets the human name (Hugh).


You just don’t see the word kitsch flying around. I don’t think it’s because there’s any lack of kitsch — art that’s considered overly sentimental, pretentious, or mass-produced into clichedom. I think it’s because kitsch has taken over. Anymore, if it isn’t kitsch, art is considered “weird.”

KITSCH: The reduction of aesthetic objects or ideas into easily marketable forms. Some theorists of postmodernism see the “kitschification” of culture as one symptom of the postmodern condition. The term can be as difficult to define as its companion term, “camp,” since there are so many disparate examples that can be cited as kitsch. Jean Baudrillard provides us with a useful definition: “The kitsch object is commonly understood as one of that great army of ‘trashy’ objects, made of plaster of Paris [stuc] or some such imitation material: that gallery of cheap junk—accessories, folksy knickknacks, ‘souvernirs’, lampshades or fake African masks—which proliferate everywhere, with a preference for holiday resorts and places of leisure” (Consumer Society 109-10). As Baudrillard goes on, “To the aesthetics of beauty and originality, kitsch opposes its aesthetics of simulation: it everywhere reproduces objects smaller or larger than life; it imitates materials (in plaster, plastic, etc.); it apes forms or combines them discordantly; it repeats fashion without having been part of the experience of fashion” (Consumer Society 111). My class on the Holocaust (HONR 199K) defined kitsch on January 23, 2001 by way of Spielberg’s film, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: 1) kitsch tends to simplify and trivialize complex ideas by reducing them to black-and-white stereotypes, as Dale Fresch explained (for example, Sean Connery’s speech about the “armies of darkness”); 2) it is oriented to the masses and thus tends towards a lowest-common denominator so that anyone can relate; 3) it tends to be tied to mass consumption and thus to profit-making entertainment. As Baudrillard puts it, “This proliferation of kitsch, which is produced by industrial reproduction and the vulgarization at the level of objects of distinctive signs taken from all registers (the bygone, the ‘neo’, the exotic, the folksy, the futuristic) and from a disordered excess of ‘ready-made’ signs, has its basis, like ‘mass culture’, in the sociological reality of the consumer society” (Consumer Society 110); 4) kitsch remains, on the whole, completely unselfconscious and without any political or critical edge. When kitsch becomes especially self-conscious it begins to tip over into camp. The one point in the Last Crusade where kitsch could be said to tip over into camp is when Hitler himself signs Indiana Jones’ book in the film.

“Bathed in Blessing” by Annie LaPoint. Insidous.

Q. “What so bad about it?”
A. “It’s like a salesman who agrees with everything you say and ends with, ‘So that’ll be $700 for fifteen copies.'”

Will Rogers:

“Everything is changing. People are taking the comedians seriously and the politicians as a joke.”


“Drug for Confidents.”



Quentin Tarantino needs to do “The Dark Knight Returns.”

Not the directing, just the role of the Joker.

Another Silly Song.

Old Country-Western song by Little Jimmy Dickens.
If I remember this right, we used to sing the chorus over and over. Enough to drive a couple of parents mad. Oh, well. They seem fine now.

May the Bird of Paradise Fly up Your Nose
One fine day as I was a-walkin’ down the street
Spied a beggar man with rags upon his feet
Took a penny from my pocket
In his tin cup I did drop it
I heard him say as I made my retreat

“May the bird of paradise fly up your nose”
“May an elephant caress you with his toes”
“May your wife be plagued with runners in her hose”
“May the bird of paradise fly up your nose”

The laundry man is really on his toes
Found a hundred-dollar bill among my clothes
When he called me I came a-runnin’
Gave him back his dime for phonin’
I heard him sayin’ as I turned to go


I was way behind one day to catch the train
Taxi driver said “We’ll make it just the same”
The speed cop made it with us
And as he wrote out the ticket
I stood by politely a-waitin’ for my change


Sha Na Na.

I was talking about silly songs I have known at work…and about half of the people on my team didn’t know who or what “Sha Na Na” is.

Well, let me tell you…no, wait. There’s a website:

Sha Na Na’s official home page.

My brother and I listened to their Silly Songs album so many times I think we went through at least two copies.

Well I saw the thing comin’ out of the sky
It had the one long horn, one big eye
I commenced to shakin’ and I said “ooh-eee”
It looks like a purple eater to me

It was a one-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
(One-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater)
A one-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
Sure looks strange to me (One eye?)

Well he came down to earth and he lit in a tree
I said Mr. Purple People Eater, don’t eat me
I heard him say in a voice so gruff
I wouldn’t eat you cuz you’re so tough

It was a one-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
One-eyed, one-horned flyin’ purple people eater
One-eyed, one-horned, flyin’ purple people eater
Sure looks strange to me (One horn?)

I said Mr. Purple People Eater, what’s your line
He said it’s eatin’ purple people and it sure is fine
But that’s not the reason that I came to land
I wanna get a job in a rock and roll band

Well bless my soul, rock and roll, flyin’ purple people eater
Pigeon-toed, undergrowed, flyin’ purple people eater
(We wear short shorts)
Flyin’ purple people eater
Sure looks strange to me

And then he swung from the tree and he lit on the ground
He started to rock, really rockin’ around
It was a crazy ditty with a swingin’ tune
Sing a boop boop aboopa lopa lum bam boom

Well bless my soul, rock and roll, flyin’ purple people eater
Pigeon-toed, undergrowed, flyin’ purple people eater
I like short shorts
Flyin’ little people eater
Sure looks strange to me (Purple People?)

And then he went on his way, and then what do ya know
I saw him last night on a TV show
He was blowing it out, a’really knockin’ em dead
Playin’ rock and roll music through the horn in his head

[Clarinet solo]


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