Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Onion Vol. 41 #30

Cat General
War On String May Be
Unwinnable, Says Cat

Onion day!

  • Supreme Court Justices Devour Sandra Day O'Connor In Ancient Ritual
    If the ritual was performed in accordance with the court scrolls, O'Connor's body was then laid upon a traditional brass bier and borne up a five-story marble staircase to a consecrated inner sanctum, where clerks skewered the raw meat on wooden spits. Late into the evening, the Supreme Court justices feasted on the renowned federalist by torchlight.

  • Study: 72 Percent of High-Fives Unwarranted
    Specialists at the National Exuberance Institute said Monday that more than three quarters of national high-five slap exchanges are unnecessary. "Abuse and inappropriate implementation of the gesture is epidemic," said NEI president Avi Gupta.

  • Chocolate Pudding Up $2 A Barrel
    The price per barrel of dark sweet chocolate pudding jumped to over $60 Monday as global anxiety continued to drive demand for the delicious after-meal treat.

Monday, July 25, 2005


From the always clever and funny machinima series Red Vs. Blue, a new obscenity: "shisno". Allow the Church and Gary the talking computer to explain (from episode 54).

Church: You don't know anything about the aliens that programmed you?
Church: You mean humans.
Church: Why, what do they call us?
Gary: [Pause...] SHISNO.
Church: That's an insult, isn't it?
Church: [Sighs]
Church: Who's there?
Gary: YOU ARE.
Church: "You are" who?
Church: Alright. What does it mean?
Church: Umm... a skunk. Wait, so "shisno" means skunk?!
Church: Yes.
Church: Oooh! No!
Church: Gross.

Now if you'll excuse me, I must now go support those guys by buying the season 3 DVD.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Seven Meals To Rule Them All

Alamo LOTR Event Poster
One of the coolest things about Austin is the Alamo Drafthouse - theaters where they've taken out every other row of seats and put in tables. You can order from a full menu, including beer and wine, from your seat before and during the movie. And they're always doing cool events like this. Last summer they showed that shark movie "Open Water" on a screen at the lake, and the audience floated in innertubes in the water.

Lord of the Rings Trilogy with Hobbit Feast

Tickets go on sale at 5 PM ONLINE on July 22. Tickets will also go on sale at the downtown theatre at 6:15 PM that evening but be warned: we have sold out shows going on at the theatre that night and people must be patient if they want to buy at the busy theatre that night.

First Breakfast: Fresh Hens eggs, nice crispy bacon, grilled mushrooms and orange slice

Second Breakfast: Strawberries and Cream

Elevensies: Pan Seared Sausage and tomatoes with cheeses, cabbage and pickles

Luncheon: Braised Spareribs with mashed potatoes, roast carrots

Afternoon Tea: Baby greens with garlic blackberry vinaigrette, cheese herb galette, served with tea cookies

Dinner: Stewed Coney (rabbit) with taters, carrot, and leek, fresh garden herbs with crusty bread

Supper: Swirl of tomato and spinach soups wild mushroom crouton, apple pie

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Traig & McGrath, Shut-In Detectives

These are old, dating from 2001, but I just found them today, and they are excellent: Traig & McGrath, Shut-In Detectives.
Jenny Traig and Peter McGrath, cousins, left their jobs to become self-declared shut-ins. They quickly discovered that even the shut-in's life is full of many small mysteries. Inspired by the great tradition of housebound detectives, they resolved to become investigators themselves. The following are cases from their files.

#7: The Case of the Overlong Bathroom Tenure
After much deliberation, the sleuths agreed they would never know what happened without a close, on-site investigation of the lavatory itself. They then agreed ignorance wasn't such a bad thing. Although it seemed likely that Mr. E--- had committed some atrocities during his tenure in that room, the nature of these would remain a mystery.

#11: The Case of the Mislaid Chalice
Peter wanted to solve the mystery through mystical divination, using a magical powder he'd procured from an undisclosed source.

"It looks like the seasoning packet from a packet of ramen," Angela remarked.

"I'm afraid you're mistaken," Peter replied.

"I'm going to be pissed if I go to make ramen and find you've swiped the flavoring."

"Very well. It is ramen seasoning. But the purpose to which I propose to put this packet is more important than mere flavoring. This powder, which contains substantial amounts of the chemical monosodium glutamate, is the key to unlocking our third investigator... my subconscious!"

#22: The Case of the Lonely Detectives OR Why Doesn't Anyone Ask Us Out?
Well, then, perhaps astrology was to blame. Peter disagreed. "We're different signs. We can't be under the same bad star. But maybe the problem is bad feng shui." Jenny dissented. "That can't be, either, because feng shui is a load of crap."

#36: The Case of the Offensive Odor; or, You Can't Feed That to a Kitty
"You know what it might have been?" Jenny suddenly interjected. "This morning, when I couldn't find his food, I fed him some old corn chowder instead. Because it was chunky and smelled fishy, like everything else he eats."

The feline deposited confirming clues in his box the next day. The corn chowder, and Jenny's poor judgment, were, in fact, to blame. "What were you thinking, indeed," Peter said. The evidence was overpowering, but the Shut-Ins agreed to pretend they didn't notice it until their roommate Angela returned home from work and cleaned the box out herself.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Backspace Browser Navigation

Here is something:
  • that is useful and timesaving
  • that I didn't know until a couple of days ago
  • that I learned by noticing someone else doing it
  • that you may already know, Mr. or Ms. Smarty
  • that I don't know how I didn't know, I just didn't, you know?
  • that is even better than the way I used to do it, which I thought was pretty cool in the first place
  • that works at least in superior browsers like Firefox, as well as in inferior crap like IE

And here it is:
the "Backspace" key (or "Delete" key on Macs) is a browser shortcut for the "go back one page" command.

Sure you can click the little back-arrow button, but if you're a keyboard kind of person like me, then you don't always want to reach all the way over there for the mouse. What I've been using for years instead is Alt-Left-Arrow (or Cmd-Left-Arrow on my Macs). But that's twice as many keys, and worse, a two-handed operation. So, while it will be a little weird to retrain my brain that the "delete the previous character you typed" key is also sometimes the "go back one page" key, it will be well worth it. Just think of all the free time I'll have now!

Those of you who already knew this, why in God's name didn't you tell me? Those of you who didn't, you're welcome.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Computer Frustration

jwz has a lovely animation, in which a little guy pounds himself to a bloody death on his keyboard. I've had those kinds of days; I can relate. WARNING: graphic stick-figure violence and gore.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Hello, I am peanut butter!

Mimi Smartypants made me laugh harder tonight than I have in quite a while. Maybe I'm tired; maybe I'm just in the right mood; dunno. The whole entry is good, as always, but I'm referring in particular to the last section, "MASTER OF PUPPETS".
"Hello, peanut butter!" I reply. "How's life treating you?"
"Fine," says the peanut butter.

Onion vol. 41 #28

Water Pistol Fired Using Sideways Gangsta Grip
Water Pistol Fired Using
Sideways Gangsta Grip

Leftover Onion again this week.
  • Nation's Shirtless, Shoeless March On Washington For Equal-Service Rights
    "I'm hardly surprised [Sen. Craig] ascribes to the repugnant and prejudicial notion that we have 'chosen' to be this way," Hutchins said. "Well, I've got news for you, senator: This is the way I am. I was born not wearing a shirt."

  • Sun Safety Tips
    • Always sit at least 100 yards from sun.
    • UV rays can damage the corneas; don't forget to rub a good sunscreen into your eyes.
    • Before going outside, check sun's strength by placing test baby in driveway for 1/2 hour.

  • Shape Magazine Declares July 'Let Yourself Go' Month
    Features in the issue include "Girth Equals Mirth: Six Sure-Fire Techniques For Broadening That Belly," "Wrinkles: The More You Have, The More You've Lived," and "Reduce Unwanted Stress By Not Giving A Fuck."

  • Lone Man With Six-Pack 'Partying'
    Schlatter, well-known for throwing extremely intimate affairs on weekends, is reportedly considering a whiskey purchase, which would enable him to elevate his partying status to "hearty."

Monday, July 11, 2005

No Damage to Marriage in Spain

Via Direland, a truly remarkable speech by the Prime Minister of Spain, Rodriguez Zapatero, following the passage of equally remarkable legislation there legalizing both gay marriage and the adoption of children by gay couples.
There is no damage to marriage or to the concept of family in allowing two people of the same sex to get married. To the contrary, what happens is this class of Spanish citizens get the potential to organize their lives with the rights and privileges of marriage and family. There is no danger to the institution of marriage, but precisely the opposite: this law enhances and respects marriage.

Today, conscious that some people and institutions are in a profound disagreement with this change in our civil law, I wish to express that, like other reforms to the marriage code that preceded this one, this law will generate no evil, that its only consequence will be the avoiding of senseless suffering of decent human beings. A society that avoids senseless suffering of decent human beings is a better society.

Friday, July 08, 2005

"Hmmm, time to buy"

The Get Your War On guy has an unbelievably cold quote, courtesy of Brit Hume, Fox News.
My first thought when I heard -- just on a personal basis, when I heard there had been this attack and I saw the futures this morning, which were really in the tank, I thought: 'Hmmm, time to buy.'

The 'It Burns When I Pee' Movement

Via Pandagon, the latest in health consultations.
Given that the ultimate form of medical consultation appears to be amateur videotape, why not start the It Burns When I Pee movement? Videotape yourself peeing, and then send it to Coburn and Frist. At the end of the tape, ask them, "Doc, why does it burn when I pee?" Given their expertise and interest in the everyday medical issues of Americans, you should receive an answer on the Senate floor within days.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Suck, 10 Years Later

Suck's 404 Not Found Tombstone

Via rabbit blog, a long, detailed, long, interesting, long, insightful and long history of Suck: Big Fish. Ah, how I miss the days when Wednesdays meant new Onion and new Filler!

Sucky tidbits:

  • "[Illustrator Terry Colon] would get sick of me," says Havrilesky, "because I would send him descriptions that would say, 'An obese squirrel that looks slightly drunk and confused but regretful is sitting at a bar with an emaciated rabbit.' He would always say, 'You only get two emotions. It can be regretful and drunk, or regretful and excited, but it cannot be more than two things at once.'"

  • T. Jay Madlib
    I've had enough of your __(expletive)__, __(expletive)__ __(expletive)__!

  • Apocalypse Now! (near death experience)
    "I even wrote a last Filler ever, where the hack kills the fish and then turns the gun on himself," says Havrilesky. "I remember writing it and saying to Terry, 'Oh god, I feel like the fish is dead now. I feel like I lost my good friend the fish because we killed him off.'"

  • Gone Fishin' (actual death experience)
    Q. Who wants a can-do attitude from the Sucksters? You're supposed to be miserable for my entertainment. Whatever happened to suffering for your art?
    A. Every day for six years we've been shucking and jiving for the amusement of a bunch of retards and you say we're not suffering enough?

  • Perfect example of their tagline ("A fish, a barrel and a smoking gun"): the Suckdot parody

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Live8 and One.org

Via Democrappy's Live8 in Three Acts - Why Live8 Didn't Suck ... and Why it Did

Onion vol. 41 #27

This week's Onion is a rerun, but has some gems.

  • Bush Regales Dinner Guests With Impromptu Oratory On Virgil's Minor Works
    Bush then recited a selection from The Bucolics in the original Latin, pausing occasionally to translate into French out of respect for his friend Amélie du Maurier, a young Parisian concert violinist in attendance. Earlier in the evening, a blushing du Maurier admitted to Bush that she did not know Latin. Bush eased the young woman's embarrassment with a joke.

    "I wouldn't be surprised if your father forbade you from learning Latin, out of sheer distaste for res publica," said Bush, alluding to du Maurier's ancestors' place in the ousted French aristocracy.

  • Customer's Attempt To Complain To Manager Thwarted By Employee
    "Normally, I wouldn't care if somebody bitches me out to the boss," Wheaton said, "but after skipping work twice last week, I was an ass hair from getting canned."

  • What Do You Think? on The Social Security Time Bomb
    "Everybody relax. We'll be fine as soon as we get our money back from Iraq."

  • Lawn-And-Garden Tips
    • Gang members will often pour malt liquor onto the ground in memory of their dead homies, resulting in soil damage. Shoo gang members away from your front yard.
    • If your lawn doesn't look as green as it could, warn Manuel that you could fire him and hire another one just like him in a second.
    • Planting vegetables is a great money-saver. Over the course of a summer, you could shave $75 off your grocery bill with just a few hundred hours of work.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

If Evolution Is Outlawed

If Evolution Is Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Evolve

Sneak peek at a new t-shirt site I'm working on with some friends... We're working on polishing the site before we consider it "finished", but there are more than 100 designs (i.e., 101 ;-) so far, with 5 times that many more ideas on the drawing board. More details coming soon!

Sunday, July 03, 2005

The Handmaid's Tale

I just finished reading Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale, and I really liked it. It kept me up reading too late every night until I finished it, which is high praise. It's dystopian literature, like Brave New World, We and of course 1984, which I like anyway, but this was especially well done. I thought Atwood masterfully portrayed the "macro" level society at the same time that she portrayed the handmaid's personal narrative within it.

I also couldn't help but notice some similarities to The World Since 9/11(tm):
It was after the catastrophe, when they shot the president and machine-gunned the Congress and the army declared a state of emergency. They blamed it on the Islamic fanatics, at the time.

Keep calm, they said on television. Everything is under control.

I was stunned. Everyone was, I know that. It was hard to believe. The entire government, gone like that. How did they get in, how did it happen?

That was when they suspended the Constitution. They said it would be temporary. There wasn't even any rioting in the streets. People stayed home at night, watching television, looking for some direction. There wasn't even an enemy you could put your finger on.

... Things continued in that state of suspended animation for weeks, although some things did happen. Newspapers were censored, and some were closed down, for security reasons they said. The roadblocks began to appear, and Identipasses. Everyone approved of that, since it was obvious you couldn't be too careful. They said that new elections would be held, but that it would take some time to prepare for them. The thing to do, they said, was to continue on as usual.

Okay, nobody's machine-gunned the government, but the theme Atwood creates of everyone going along with less and less freedom and more and more craziness "for their own good," painted on a backdrop of religious fundamentalism, was still a little extra creepy. A great book that I highly recommend. It's been around long enough, and used in enough college courses, that if there's a used bookstore anywhere near you, or a computer that can connect to half.com, you should be able to pick up a copy cheap.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Nvu 1.0

According to Mozillazine, version 1.0 of Nvu is finally out. I've been using 0.8 and 0.9, and like it a lot. It's a nice, complete cross-platform HTML editor. And I like that.

This is the current incarnation of what used to be Netscape Composer, then Mozilla Composer, now Nvu, and now 1.0.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Mas Adios, Mofo

Adios, Mofo
Short update to the Rick Perry "Adios, mofo" story from the other day - good t-shirts to commemorate the embarassing gaffe, courtesy of PinkDome.