Saturday, July 31, 2010
If you’re the kind of person who carries hand sanitizer at all times, and wears surgical gloves to use a public doorknob, you maybe shouldn’t read this missive from our pals at Delancey Place. I have oft attempted to explain to germophobes the real nature of the micro-ecology, but to little avail. Maybe having it laid out in print might help but I’m not too sure.
"There is no point in trying to hide from your bacteria, for they are on and around you always, in numbers you can't conceive. If you are in good health and averagely diligent about hygiene, you will have a herd about one trillion bacteria grazing on your fleshy plains - about a hundred thousand of them on every square centimeter of skin. They are there to dine off the ten billion or so flakes of skin you shed every day, plus all the tasty oils and fortifying minerals that seep out from every pore and fissure. You are for them the ultimate food court, with the convenience of warmth and constant mobility thrown in. By way of thanks, they give you B.O.
And those are just the bacteria that inhabit your skin. There are trillions more tucked away in your gut and nasal passages, clinging to you hair and eyelashes, swimming over the surface of your eyes, drilling through the enamel of your teeth. Your digestive system alone is host to more than a hundred trillion microbes, of at least four hundred types. Some deal with sugars, some with starches, some attack other bacteria. A surprising number, like the ubiquitous intestinal spirochetes, have no detectable function at all. They just seem to like to be with you. Every human body consists of about 10 quadrillion cells, but about 100 quadrillion bacterial cells. They are, in short, a big part of us. From the bacteria's point of view, of course, we are a rather small part of them.
Because we humans are big and clever enough to produce and utilize antibiotics and disinfectants, it is easy to convince ourselves that we have banished bacteria to the fringes of existence. Don't you believe it. Bacteria may not build cities or have interesting social lives, but they will be here when the Sun explodes. This is their planet, and we are on it only because they allow us to be." – A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill Bryson (Broadway)
Click here for Lightnin’ Hopkins
The secret word is Mouthwash
Posted by Mick at 7/31/2010 03:37:00 PM
Click here for Anthrax
Posted by Mick at 7/31/2010 03:33:00 PM
Friday, July 30, 2010
Science fiction has never taken all that much notice of China. In some respects, it’s a kinda conservative genre. Now the Chinese are creating their own near-future social-collapse fiction, and have definitely come a long way from Chairman Mao and his thousand blooming flowers. I’m not at all sure what it might mean in the long run, but, on a selfishly personal level, it’d be nice if it provoked a Mandarin translation of The DNA Cowboys. The Russians did one.
“It's 2013, and China's the only country to have survived an economic meltdown. The Chinese own Starbucks, which now serves longan dragon well lattes. So why can't anybody remember an entire month? That's the premise of a new dystopian novel. Chan Koon-Chung's novel Shengshi Zhongguo 2013 (which roughly translates to "The Gilded Age: China 2013") has gone from being a marginalized, underground text — which couldn't even get published in Mainland China — to becoming a major sensation among China's intellectuals.” Click here for more.
Click here for classic Uncle Bill (Lifted from Dangerous Minds. Link on right.)
The secret word is Future
Posted by Mick at 7/30/2010 03:51:00 PM
My cup runneth over. Encore Westerns is now running episodes of Have Gun – Will Travel daily at 6.40pm (Pacific). It was the total favorite TV western series of my childhood. Better even that Maverick or Wanted Dead or Alive. (And I still own a genuine Have Gun lunchbox.) Back in 2008, there were ugly rumors that a movie was being planned with Eminem as Paladin. Mercifully that now seems to have gone away. I don’t think I’d like to see a Have Gun – Will Travel movie, unless, of course, I was hired to write it.
Click here for Duane Eddy
Posted by Mick at 7/30/2010 03:43:00 PM
Regular readers will be aware I have a fascination (along with Have Gun – Will Travel) with Nazis in space. Thus, when I stumbled across this image on a very out-there website called UFO Radar, I was elated. The picture may look like concept art for the movie-in-the-making Iron Sky but they assure me it’s a Haunebu III spacecraft from the Third Reich.
"Apparently there was a joint German-Japanese flight to Mars in 1945 using the prototype Haunebu III spacecraft.”
But wait. That’s not all.
“Below is recently leaked video showing a manned voyage that took place to Mars circa 1972 -- 1973. The only information available is that they didn’t go to the surface but were there to map a certain area that is believed to have housed ancient extraterrestrial structures, bases and villages. This was filmed from a cine projector a few years ago and has been watermarked to cover a ‘certain’ logo we’d all recognize. Be sure to check 1:45 where you can just make out a symmetrical pyramid shape structure.” (Click here for the video and more of this wild shit.)
Click here for ? (It’s not the Jaynettes) Also lifted from Dangerous Minds.
Posted by Mick at 7/30/2010 03:39:00 PM
And what better way to follow Space Nazis than with a link to our pal Munz’s remembrances of his days as a sideman with Kinky Friedman…
“My first live sighting of Richard "Kinky" "Big Dick" Friedman was at Max's Kansas City in New York in 1973. He was headlining Upstairs at Max's with his band the Texas Jewboys and I was an 18-year-old hometown Jewish country singer who revered both Hank Williams and Lenny Bruce. Kinky and I were a match made in purgatory. It would've been heaven had it not been for the opening act, an unknown named Billy Joel.” (Click here for the whole thing and also details of how the two of them will be playing McCabes in LA tomorrow.)
Click here for Kinky
Posted by Mick at 7/30/2010 03:31:00 PM
Thursday, July 29, 2010
It might be that, despite any visitors from the future, we’re on our way to discovering the source of all mass in the universe. Which would definitely be something.
"Last month rumors swirled that scientists at the Large Hadron Collider found the Higgs Boson particle. Those reports were untrue, but we have made significant progress towards finding the elusive particle. Why is this such an important discovery? The Higgs is one of the five bosonic elementary particles, each of which acts as a carrier of a fundamental property of nature. The other four bosons, known as the gauge bosons, are the carriers of the fundamental forces - photons carry electromagnetism, the W and Z bosons both carry the weak nuclear force, and gluons carry the strong nuclear force. (There's also another hypothetical gauge boson, the graviton, which unsurprisingly carries the gravitational force, but that one remains undiscovered.) Now, the Higgs Boson is the carrier of mass in the universe. It does this by helping to form a Higgs field, a quantum structure through which all the other elementary particles pass. According to the Standard Model of physics, certain particles - such as the photon - pass through the field unaffected and remain massless, while others - such as the W and Z bosons - bring part of the field with them, giving them mass. This subatomic interaction with the Higgs field is what accounts for the existence of all the mass in the universe - at least, if the theory is correct. And the only way to confirm it is to find the Higgs Boson." (Click here for more)
But if that’s all too complex click here for David Lynch
The secret word is Golly!
Posted by Mick at 7/29/2010 03:51:00 PM
Creationists resist all efforts to drag them, even kicking and screaming, into scientific reality.
“Each year, a group of biology students at the Christian university based in Lynchburg, Virginia, travels to the Natural History Museum in Washington to learn about a theory they dismiss as incorrect - Darwin's theory of evolution. The young "creationists" examined a model of the Morganucodon rat, believed to be the first and common ancestor of mammals that appeared some 210 million years ago. Lauren Dunn, 19, a second-year biology student, was unimpressed. "210 million years, that's arbitrary. They put that time to make up for what they don't know," she said. Nathan Hubbard, a 20 year-old from Michigan and a first-year biology major who plans to become a doctor, regarded the model with suspicion. "There is no scientific, biological genetic way that this, this rat, could become you," he said, seemingly scandalised by the proposition. Liberty University is the most prominent evangelical university in the United States, with around 12,000 students who adhere to strict rules and regulations regarding moral conduct. Its biology curriculum includes a course on "Young Earth Creationism", which juxtaposes Charles Darwin's Origin of the Species with the Book of Genesis. "In order to be the best creationist, you have to be the best evolutionist you can be," said Marcus Ross, who teaches paleontology and says of Adam and Eve: "I feel they were real people, they were the first people." David DeWitt, a Liberty University biology professor, opens his classes with a prayer, asking God to help him teach his students. "I pray that you help me to teach effectively and help the students to learn and defend their faith," he says. Strongly expressed faith is not unusual in the United States, a country where 80 per cent of the population claim to believe in God and ascribe to established religions. Polls taken in the last two years found that between 44 and 46 per cent of Americans believe that the Earth was created in a week, somewhere between 6,000 and 10,000 years ago.” (Click here for more)
Click here for The Piltdown Men
Posted by Mick at 7/29/2010 03:44:00 PM
It only takes a moment
“On July 10, a nearly 100-degree day, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) began rounding up more than 1,200 federally protected wild horses on public lands in Nevada. The use of helicopters to run terrified horses over miles of scorching desert resulted in serious injuries and the deaths of more than 20 horses, at least three of whom were foals (the roundup took place less than two months after foaling season). Unbelievably, the BLM plans to continue these summer roundups in spite of July 10’s disastrous outcome. Wild horse and burro champions Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV) are currently circulating a letter among the members of the House of Representatives that will be soon be sent to Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar. The letter asks Secretary Salazar to halt the current roundups at the Tuscarora Complex in Nevada, along with any other pending gathers of wild horses, until the BLM can demonstrate that it has addressed the failings of its current program for managing wild horses.” Click here to help
Click here for the Rolling Stones
Posted by Mick at 7/29/2010 03:27:00 PM
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
“Shown below, is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by an 86 year old woman. The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in the New York Times.
I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I endeavored to pay my plumber last month. By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have elapsed between his presenting the check and the arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it. I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly deposit of my entire pension, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only eight years. You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty for the inconvenience caused to your bank. My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways.
I noticed that whereas I personally answer your telephone calls and letters, --- when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the impersonal, overcharging, pre-recorded, faceless entity which your bank has become. From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a flesh-and-blood person. My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and hereafter no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check, addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you must nominate. Be aware that it is an OFFENSE under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope.
Please find attached an Application Contact which I require your chosen employee to complete. I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no alternative.
Please note that all copies of his or her medical history must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof.
In due course, at MY convenience, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me.
I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of button presses required of me to access my account balance on your phone bank service.
As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Let me level the playing field even further.
When you call me, press buttons as follows:
IMMEDIATELY AFTER DIALLING, PRESS THE STAR (*) BUTTON FOR ENGLISH
#1. To make an appointment to see me
#2. To query a missing payment.
#3. To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
#4 To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping
#5. To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.
#6. To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home
#7. To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required. Password will be communicated to you at a later date to that Authorized Contact mentioned earlier.
#8. To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 7.
#9. To make a general complaint or inquiry. The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service.
#10. This is a second reminder to press* for English.
While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call. Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee to cover the setting up of this new arrangement. May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous New Year?
Your Humble Client
And remember: Don't make old People mad. We don't like being old in the first place, so it doesn't take much to piss us off.”
Click here for Marilyn Manson
The secret word is Payback
Posted by Mick at 7/28/2010 03:58:00 PM
Damn. I recall when it at least took teargas and riot cops to force a band off stage. Not bird droppings. I would also have wanted a refund, had I gone in the first place, which is highly unlikely.
“Pooping pigeons forced the Kings of Leon to abandon their St. Louis, Missouri, concert after just three songs Friday night, the rock band's management said Saturday. An infestation of the birds in the rafters of the Verizon Amphitheatre bombarded the musicians as soon as they took the stage, according to Andy Mendelsohn of Vector Management. "Jared (Followill) was hit several times during the first two songs," Mendelsohn said of the band's bassist. "It's not only disgusting -- it's a toxic health hazard. They really tried to hang in there," Mendelsohn added. Followill, who describes himself as a "germophobe," said there was already poop on his pedal and carpet when he walked out on stage. The aerial attack began during the opening song -- "Closer" -- when he was bombed in the face. His bass tech wiped most of it off with a sanitary wipe, he said.” (Click here for more and a video of the incident.)
Maybe they should have employed security cats. Click here for cat herding
Posted by Mick at 7/28/2010 03:50:00 PM
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
The following appeared on the blog of Kansas City Police Chief James Corwin. Seems like someone finally figured how there were just too many white powders in this world, and the shit should really be more colorful.
“In the last two months or so, police have started seeing a new trend in drugs in Kansas City: blue meth. It had shown up at a few other spots around the country, but we've only recently been recovering it around here. We haven't seen a huge amount, but it was enough that I wanted to tell you about it so you know to call police if you see something like it. Our undercover units have encountered it a few times, and our Shoal Creek Patrol Division has made four arrests in the last three weeks in which blue meth was recovered. We do know that it is not chemically different than regular methamphetamine. Our crime lab has tested all of it and has determined the active ingredients remain the same, and the blue version is no more potent than the regular meth our officers have recovered. (As an aside - almost all the meth we've recovered lately has been relatively strong, thus presenting even greater risks than meth normally does.) The color could be coming from something as simple as food coloring. Unfortunately, we don't know where the blue meth is coming from. Our Drug Enforcement Unit has several theories about why some meth manufacturers are making it blue. One is that the field test police use to determine whether a substance is methamphetamine is blue, and perhaps criminals are making the meth the same color to make the test harder to read. But the tests continue to work just as well on the blue meth as they do on any other, and besides, all drugs that are field tested are later re-tested for confirmation in our crime lab. Another theory is that the blue could be the mark of the manufacturer, like how ecstasy makers stamp pills with pictures to indicate where they came from or that they're "high quality." Still another hypothesis is that the manufacturers are simply copying the TV show on AMC called "Breaking Bad," which features a character who makes meth and dyes it blue. Whatever the reason, people in Kansas City are making, using and selling blue meth. It is not more potent or chemically different than the regular kind, but it is just as dangerous. If you suspect meth use, distribution or manufacturing, call police.”
Or if you don’t want to call the police you might like to click here to check out (and even possibly buy) my new fast history of amphetamine, Speed-Speed-Speedfreak.
Click here for Gene Vincent
The secret word is Smurf
Posted by Mick at 7/27/2010 03:49:00 PM
I found my way to this website called Foolish Gadgets where one can browse a veritable feast of pointless fun foolishness. (Cable news is running with it’s B-list anchors, premium movie channels think they can get away with showing Psycho III over and over, and, despite the BP disaster dragging on and a billion a day or something being pissed away in Afghanistan, I figure the media silly season is underway.
“Having a nice, cold drink is great especially during a sweltering and hot summer day. However, if you tend to be part of the recycling camp, then you might be interested in bringing home the Cold Boulders Reusable Ice Cubes. As its name implies, you will be able to reuse these dishwasher-safe granite-inspired Cold Boulders over and over again as ice cubes, since they are filled with purified water and will never dilute to make sure your beverage remains as thick as before while remaining chilled and nice. Each $7.99 purchase comes with 8 of these boulders, bringing new meaning to having a drink on the rocks. Too bad for those who have the habit of chewing on ice cubes though.”
Click here for Chinese Rocks
Posted by Mick at 7/27/2010 03:43:00 PM
I don’t text. I hardly IM. I never feel the need to communicate that badly. (And I also reflect that the same demographic that now texts continuously used not to be able to set the clock on a VCR.) But if you gotta text and drive, it’s suggested you look to none other than Bob Dylan for a solution. Lordy.
Click here for Frankie Laine
Posted by Mick at 7/27/2010 03:34:00 PM
Click here for Elvis
Posted by Mick at 7/27/2010 03:29:00 PM
Monday, July 26, 2010
Click here for more and a video.
Posted by Mick at 7/26/2010 04:40:00 PM
Remember Pat Boone? Back in the depths of the 20th century he used to steal songs from Little Richard and totally emasculate them. Now he writes a column for WorldNet Daily.
“Wouldn't it be great if, when the kids get to school, they could join in a brief voluntary prayer before the classes start? Just a prayer thanking God for our freedoms and asking Him to watch over America and help each kid do his or her best during that school day? Wouldn't that be so much better than the metal detectors and drug testing and free condoms and abortion counseling that have replaced those prayers? Wouldn't it be great if our kids knew that all the great old colleges in America started out as Bible schools? That every single school kid in those early days attended classes in the Bible, along with arithmetic and geography and history? Wouldn't it be wonderful if that were still the case? Wouldn't it be great if every congressman, senator and president still considered himself or herself a "public servant" - and not our monitor or warden or boss? And if every judge knew it was his or her duty and absolute responsibility to render every verdict in strict obedience to the Constitution, and not to some long-held personal philosophy or social view?” (Click here for more if you really want it.)
Click here for Richard
Posted by Mick at 7/26/2010 04:37:00 PM
Sunday, July 25, 2010
This is not bodyparts of an alien lifeform. It is black pudding, a delicacy of the British Isles. When the uninitiated American first encounters an Brit aficionado tucking into a delicious helping of black pudding – on its own or as part of an epic fry-up – their first reaction is usually one of dire shock. “That is that?” “What’s it made of?” “How the fuck can you eat that?” And when the questions are answered the shock often deepens. Sometimes taking the questioner quite close the threshold of catatonia. “It’s made of what???” And this has always struck me as a little odd. I mean, why is it considered okay to eat a nice steak sliced from a cow’s rump, and yet to their eat their intestines, liver, or dried blood as somehow disgusting. I take the attitude that, if one is going to kill and consume the poor creature, one has a karmic responsibility to eat all of it. But many don’t see it that way. The modern carnivore is an oddly detached creature. (And, yet, have you ever wondered what’s in a Big Mac?)
Click here for Billie Holiday
The secret word is Prey
Posted by Mick at 7/25/2010 04:24:00 PM
Posted by Mick at 7/25/2010 04:17:00 PM