On bad days I whine about how hard it is to keep up with a blog (surprise: it’s harder than keeping up with newspaper writing), so when I see something like this it really reminds me of how lucky I am to be able to blog at all. And more, to be able to blog without being censored by my own government.
You may want to have something fragile and expendable on hand to break at that point.
Which nation owns the most computers per person? It isn’t the U.S. I’m not sure if this is another thing I should worry about (omg, the economy is going down the tubes we’ll never catch up omg omg!!11!!) or if it’s more of a case of "Well you really only need one per person anyway, who do they think they’re impressing with 1.22?"
A report finds online threats to children are mostly overblown. That may be, but just because stranger danger isn’t as big of a deal in meatspace as people think doesn’t mean I’d let my kids go play in a train station. (Not that I have any kids.)
The report also states that bullying is really a massive problem online for kids. This doesn’t surprise me; I was bullied when I was a kid and was fortunate enough to live in the country. I have no doubt that if I’d lived in town I’d have been bullied more, and if they’d have been able to get to me online (like they can with modern kids) I’d have been bullied there too.
In the U.K., squirrels come in gray, brown, and purple.
In internet slang, awesome people who suddenly become lame are said to have "jumped the shark." This shark actually jumped a waterslide, and tragically, died for it.
To those of you who haven’t learned from "The Breakfast Club": Duct taping people and animals is seriously not funny. It’s an act of cruelty that will earn you detention and hopefully a boatload of guilt.
Finally, two girls married frogs. Sadly, like their human counterparts in the dating world, they did not turn into princes.
I would have missed it, if Logan Adams hadn’t posted about it, but today marks the 23rd anniversary of the Challenger disaster, which killed seven people. I don’t remember it; I was too young. (I do remember the Columbia, but not the circumstances I heard it; just the shock.)
I just watched it on YouTube. One minute they’re talking about how the engines are running fine and the crowd is cheering, and the next, shuttle pieces, on fire, were hurtling in several different directions.
And for the extremely morbid, there is Morbid Anatomy, which is chock full of pictures of dead things preserved for science.
Note that I didn’t look too closely at this because I found it disturbing, even though we had tons of dead things just like this in my biology classroom in high school. I guess I didn’t spend a lot of time dwelling on them either.
This is where I get away from the creepy wagon, folks, ’cause I can’t take too much of this kind of thing.
For those of you who aren’t into morbid and creepy things:
Today I’m going to plumb through my links of historical photos and galleries, in honor of my mom, who has become an addict of Shorpy after I linked it earlier. (It’s an amazing site, and if you love history and haven’t taken a look at it, you should.)
One of the political blogs I occasionally read has started linking to ZooBorns to take the edge off some of the bad political news.
The site features baby animals born at zoos all over the place, and even the ugly ones are cute. The adorable l’il monkey there on the right, Conchita, is a good example of the photos featured on the site. Conchita’s species (mangabey monkey) is critically endangered; visiting ZooBorns will definitely raise your awareness of endangered species too.
I highly recommend going there to counter any bad news you may happen to read during the day.
I highly recommend this site. Even the ugly babies are cuuuuute!
I was in the mood for movies this weekend, so I rented a wide variety of flicks, from 80s cheese to modern masterwork and about everything in between.
The worst of the lot was "The Lost Boys," a vampire movie with Kiefer Sutherland playing a bleached-blond bad boy vamp. What is it with vampires and peroxide anyway?
The movie was one of the least convincing takes on vampirism I’ve ever seen.
I just cannot bring myself to be frightened by vampires who look like they belong to an 80s hair band, complete with perms. I mean, perms? I would be offended to be killed by someone who looked like the guys in the photo on the left there. (And the styles in general are very 80s. The vampire chick wears this jacket with gigantic epaulets for heaven’s sake.)
And preteen vampire-hunting commandos? No. I’m sorry, just no. Even if you are Corey Feldman.
The movie had lots of gore, too, which I vaguely remembered from having seen it on TV ages ago, but the gore was totally and completely unconvincing.
The fake blood pretty much looked like Karo and food coloring, and I’m reasonably sure I could whip up something better at home in my kitchen sink, even though I have no experience in the creation of fake blood.
"Tropic Thunder" sounded like a silly movie to me, so I waited until it came out on DVD to watch it.
It was extremely silly. It was also chock-full of vulgar language and a bit of violence. Some was "real" in the context of the movie and some wasn’t–there’s a grody scene at the beginning where a guy has fake guts coming out of his belly for the movie-within-the-movie. There’s another grody scene involving a guy’s severed head that’s "real" within the movie.
So if you’ve a weak stomach or strongly object to bad language, really do not watch this film.
The plot revolves around a group of actors filming a war movie. In an effort to make their scenes better, their director drags them into a wilderness area in Vietnam to film them that way, but when the director is gone, they run into a group of very real drug-runners and mistake them for actors in the movie.
Highlights of the movie include the best and most unexpected Tom Cruise performance I’ve ever seen. He plays an extremely foul-mouthed movie mogul who’s nonetheless extremely funny in a horrifying thank-goodness-I-don’t-know-anyone-like-this way.
More hilarious moments come from Robert Downey Jr., portraying an Australian method actor who actually dyed his skin in order to "become" his black character. I thought of Daniel Day-Lewis right off the bat, but it turns out Downey Jr. actually is a method actor and stayed in character as the Australian method actor throughout Tropic Thunder.
Jack Black has a pretty funny role too, as a heroin addict actor who seems to have been partly based on Chris Farley and partly based on Eddie Murphy.
And in case you’re wondering, yes, there is a panda carnage scene.
I watched two movies again last night, both of which had Jack Black in them and both of which featured pandas getting beaten up. One of them was DreamWorks’ Kung Fu Panda.
Here’s the movie’s official site, which is where I got the graphic on the left; it has some cool wallpaper and stuff if you’re into that.
This movie surprised me. It was cute, without being cutesy, and the main character wasn’t a caricature of chubby people. And no one’s perfect here either, but there’s definitely good guys and bad guys, which is the way I usually like it.
The dialogue was excellent and Po, the titular panda, was surprisingly endearing.
Part of it was probably because he reminded me of my friends, who are big fans of anime, Neil Gaiman and various other fantasy/sci fi stuff. Po the panda is a big fan of the Furious Five, a band of kung-fu fighters who are notoriously awesome in their awesomeness, and when he gets to meet them he’s… pretty much just like any other fan.
The Furious Five (including voices by Seth Rogen, Lucy Liu, Angelina Jolie and Jackie Chan) aren’t too pleased with him at first, but Po’s enthusiasm proves contagious as he trains to become the legendary Dragon Warrior and defeat the wicked snow leopard Tai Lung.
I knew this was going to be a good movie as soon as I heard the first line.
"Legend tells of a legendary warrior whose kung fu skills were the stuff of… legend."