Month: July 2007 Page 2 of 5

Musical Interlude: Depeche Mode

John the Revelator.

“Seven lies/multiplied by seven/multiplied by seven again…”

Interesting. This morning, there were articles all over the ‘net about how the number of deaths in the Iraq war was decreasing, but the terrorists were learning from their mistakes and becoming more accurate in their attacks. Now, they’re gone — or at least, I can’t find them.

Fewer deaths due to increased insurgent competence! Halleliuia!

Someone I know has a kid probably going over in September, coincidentally after the Iraq report “assesses” the success of the Iraq war. Like they don’t have the f@#$ing thing written already. It isn’t the war that bothers me, as odd as that may sound. It’s the lies.

I feel like I’m being governed by a Scientologist or a Branch Davidian!

Post-Rant Mode: And, on a lighter, brassier, and genetically nano-engineered note, another Depeche Mode video: Precious. Weird…I hadn’t thought about it, but Steampunk is somehow another side of the harm humanity is doing to the planet. I’m not sure how, but it is.

Beowulf Trailer

…is up.

Book Review: Sweet Dream Pie

by Audrey Wood and Mark Teague.

One of the best children’s picture books I’ve read in a long time:

Pa Brindle blew the cobwebs off the trunk, then threw it open — and all the cats in the neighborhood opened one eye….

“I’ll be good this time,” Pa promised. “One big piece of Sweet Dream Pie, that’s all I want.”

“Well then…I’ll make it, and you help,” Ma agreed. “But if things get out of hand, don’t blame me.”

No Country for Old Men: Trailer

“If I don’t come back, tell mother I love her.”

“Your mother’s dead.”

“Then I’ll tell her myself.”

The trailer for the Coen Brothers’ movie, No Country for Old Men. Serial killer obsessed with chance in the middle of nowhere…brrr…

(via Ectoplasmosis.)

Steampunk Essentials: A List

Aether Emporium lists “The Steampunk Essentials,” including books, movies, and comics (I’ve read all but one of the comics, anyway). Oooooh, Phillip Reeve is the Mortal Engines guy. Yup. Him.


Click! On goes the lightbulb…

Dude. Everyone in Pokemon is not just characters in a video game, but characters whose in-game setting is, itself, a video game. Why do these kids’ parents let them run around all the time? Why are all the Nurse Joys identical? Why do the Pokemons level? How, in fact, do they fit into those little Poke Balls?

Duh…this is what happens when I don’t want to be writing, I watch the movie Ray has on instead…

Lester Dent Pulp Paper Master Fiction Plot Outline

The main author of the Doc Savage stories tells his secrets for writing a 6000-word pulp story that cannot fail to sell.

At this point, it might help to recall that action should do something besides advance the hero over the scenery. Suppose the hero has learned the dastards of villains have seized somebody named Eloise, who can explain the secret of what is behind all these sinister events. The hero corners villains, they fight, and villains get away. Not so hot.

Hero should accomplish something with his tearing around, if only to rescue Eloise, and surprise! Eloise is a ring-tailed monkey. The hero counts the rings on Eloise’s tail, if nothing better comes to mind. They’re not real. The rings are painted there. Why?

In the shower this morning, I kept thinking, “Steampunk + pulp = steampulp.”

Harry Potter.

Done. Spoiler in comments.

The Eight Main Symptoms of Groupthink

Eight Main Symptoms of Group Think

  1. Illusion of Invulnerability: Members ignore obvious danger, take extreme risk, and are overly optimistic.
  2. Collective Rationalization: Members discredit and explain away warning contrary to group thinking.
  3. Illusion of Morality: Members believe their decisions are morally correct, ignoring the ethical consequences of their decisions.
  4. Excessive Stereotyping:The group constructs negative sterotypes of rivals outside the group.
  5. Pressure for Conformity: Members pressure any in the group who express arguments against the group’s stereotypes, illusions, or commitments, viewing such opposition as disloyalty.
  6. Self-Censorship: Members withhold their dissenting views and counter-arguments.
  7. Illusion of Unanimity: Members perceive falsely that everyone agrees with the group’s decision; silence is seen as consent.
  8. Mindguards: Some members appoint themselves to the role of protecting the group from adverse information that might threaten group complacency.

Or, “Throw a rock in the air and you’ll hit someone guilty.” I had to laugh. The base is offering classes on “Group Solve.” The groups are supposed to get together to solve the problem of how to solve problems in a group, according to predefined methods that they’re supposed to hit upon randomly, with no hints from their teachers whatsoever…

(Citation: Janis, I. L. & Mann, L. (1977). Decision making: A psychological analysis of conflict, choice, and commitment. New York: Free Press.)

Chore Wars!

A gaming system in which you earn points for completing chores! Based on my natural chore abilities, I have the following stats:

Level 1 Wizard

Str 10
Con 9
Dex 10
Int 10
Wis 9


(via Boing Boing.)

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