01-14 January, 2002

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Date
20020102
BlogCon 2002
Time
09:27
BlogCon 2002 is a bloody great idea and looks like it’s progressing nicely. If there are any UK bloggers keen on a London meet to coincide with the US event, just drop me a line.

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Date
20020102

Time
10:44
George Lucas put *NSYNC in Star Wars Episode 2. He says his 13-year-old daughter Katie put him up to it, but that’s no excuse. He made them Jedi Knights, FFS!

I say again, please go here to sign the petition for Peter Jackson to Write and Direct Star Wars Episode III.

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Date
20020102

Time
15:46
My New Year’s resolution is to not link to anymore online quizzes.

Erm, except this one.

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Date
20020102

Time
17:07
Ho-hum. Too busy to blog much today, but I hope the world’s first magnet-fridge makes up for it.

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Date
20020103
Photoshopping
Time
09:08
Wow. I’m actually leading in a Photoshop competition. Is it some kind of anomaly, or do they know it’s my birthday today?

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Date
20020103

Time
09:23
Thank Dog for the Internet. Without it, how could I possibly know which famous mathematicians were born on this day? It’s J. R. R. Tolkien’s birthday too. I’m in geek heaven.

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Date
20020103

Time
09:48

Yessir, that there is some Goede Smaak. It comes in its own convenient container, too.

Those clever Dutch chappies think of everything!

UPDATE: Oh, for those who are wondering, here’s the answer to your question; ‘Wat is goede smaak?’.

UPDATE II: Oh, OK – here’s the answer in English – including a picture of yet more goede smaak. Mmmm, tasty!

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Date
20020103
Value Meals At Wendys
Time
15:01
A drive-though customer scored the ultimate happy meal when he stopped by his local Wendys. The harried staff got mixed up and instead of food, gave him a takeaway bag stuffed with the takings – $12,000 US dollars worth! Now the police are warning him to come forward and return the money. Apparently benefiting from other people’s stupidity is a felony in California.

(BTW, it has to be noted that the news site this links to is the ‘KCRA Channel’, not the ‘krack channel’, as I first thought. I know, I know. I was kinda disappointed, too…)

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Date
20020104

Time
09:14
Mike Slocombe and Sam Michel (gentlemen and scholars, both) have kindly agreed to have excerpts from their Amazon reviews published on the front page of my book website. I’m not sure what my publisher is going to make of the whole thing. Here’s hoping he has a sense of humour…

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Date
20020104

Time
09:16
Lake Superior State University just released its 27th annual List of Words Banished from the Queen’s English for Mis-Use, Over-Use and General Uselessness. You may already feel disenfranchised with the whole thing in the wake of so many frigging weblogs linking to the site today and yesterday – but rest assured that I don’t plan on jumping on the bandwagon again in the foreseeable future.

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Date
20020104

Time
10:31


Contest 45 is up and running at Worth 1000.

I’d like to think that my entry is suitably lame, but we’ll see where the voting takes us…

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Date
20020104

Time
10:48
Man tires of claims that he pretends to be gay to ‘get’ women. Showers with 100 women to prove otherwise. Eh?

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Date
20020104

Time
10:56
Australian Government struggles to censor Internet. Population claims that ain’t fair dinkum.

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Date
20020104

Time
11:11
Digital Wallpaper. Cool! I want some, and I know just where to get the pictures.

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Date
20020104

Time
11:39
Hey, I just made the grade at bacon. Greetings, fellow bacon lovers.

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Date
20020104
(Not) Tony Blair’s Email Address
Time
11:47
I’m still getting email for Tony Blair thanks to this stunt I pulled almost two years ago. I think it has something to do with this search result from Google (pictured) that, in its excerpt form, appears to give the address as authentic.

At least, I hope it’s this. I’d hate to think that anyone would read the article in question and still think the address was really Tony’s. Then again, if this is the case it may explain why New Labour get away with as much as they do.

(Oh, and it’s interesting to note that the PR company involved words their case studies so carefully. You’d almost think it was them what came up with the idea and did most of the bloody work…)

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Date
20020104

Time
13:26
The archives are now fixed. Sorry about that.

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Date
20020104
Spet The Deliberate Mistake
Time
13:36

Wise words from Moby, whose petting policy changed after he was hospitalised by a vicious pussy: “Don’t pet stray animals. Really. My heart bleeds for all of the homeless animals in the world, but I’ve learned my lesson. I don’t blame the cat, but I won’t be petting strays in the future.”

Especially not mean, mangy ones he meets whilst wandering around in Chinatown.

Hang on… a stray cat, roaming around free in Chinatown? Hands up everybody who believes that! I have a feeling that there’s more to this story than meets the eye.

(Note – you can see a larger version of this image by clicking here.)

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Date
20020104

Time
16:32
Former president Bill Clinton’s dog Buddy was run over and killed yesterday (CNN, MSN). The family’s previous dog, Zeke, met a similar end when Mr Clinton was governor of Arkansas. Let the conspiracy theories begin!

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Date
20020107

Time
09:43
I almost got my hair cut on Saturday, but fate intervened and I didn’t succumb to the dreaded razor until just about an hour ago. Thank Dog for that.

While I was sitting in the chair this morning, the guy who regularly does my hair was happily telling the other barbers about his ‘close call’ on Saturday. Apparently he felt kind of funny all day, and didn’t work out why until he got home and read the label of the medicine he’d been taking.

The guy had been doped up to the eyeballs on ‘extra-drowsy formula’ Benylin all day! Never mind driving or operating heavy machinery – he was bloody lucky he didn’t take an ear off or something. Next time I go there, I’m taking a paper cup and insisting on a drug test.

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Date
20020107

Time
09:46
Justify your hatred and mistrust of large corporations here.

(That’s it from me for a few hours – I gots me a report to write.)

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Date
20020107
Free Domain Names
Time
10:49
You heard me. Yes, it’s real. Get a free .tk domain name for your blog now.

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Date
20020107

Time
11:13
Fuzzy and fake images galore! What else would you expect from ‘the largest free ghost photography site on the web’?

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Date
20020107
Photoshopping
Time
15:12


Tee-hee, etc.

Some fun is being had over at fark with the publicity still of the new iMac.

Blue screens and other Windows gags are commonplace, along with several outings and the usual kitties and boobies.

You know who to vote for – get to it.

[UPDATE – 2nd Place. Bugger.]

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Date
20020107
Fat Bloke Update
Time
16:21
Pop Idol reject Rik (search keywords: ‘that fat bloke’) could release a single in as little as four weeks, with his new agent Jonathan Shalit saying he will “ignore” a contract preventing Rik from signing a record deal until May. A spokesperson from Pop Idol responded with: “It would be very disappointing if Rik chose not to stick to the contract that he agreed to.” – but Rik countered with: “The thing that I want to get across is that I am not in competition with the winner of Pop Idol.”

Fair enough. Especially when:

a) He’s not actually in the competition anymore

and

b) It’s been pointed out time and again by the judges that Rik “can in no way be considered a Pop Idol”.

ahem…

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Date
20020108

Time
09:13
Good morning, campers. Let’s start with a few star jumps and an industry prediction or two for the year 2002.

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Date
20020108

Time
09:16
It’s not a little boy dying of cancer, it’s some blogger’s grandmother who has just turned 70.

Send her a card anyway.

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Date
20020108

Time
10:24
Shockwave Flash is the new music video, dontcha know? Check out this great interactive clip for starters, then head to this tribute to ‘Journey’ for the other end of the spectrum.

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Date
20020108

Time
10:34
Help to restore the faith of this disillusioned comic artist. Go to the site, read the comics, send some lurve.

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Date
20020108

Time
14:22
“When Microsoft chairman Bill Gates was shot dead on December 2, 1999, it was a tragedy that resonated throughout the world. But as time wears on, that tragedy has developed into a mystery for many observers, who see police misconduct and a cover-up where others see an open-and-shut case.”

Riiiiiiiiiight.

See if you can work out what they’re on about over at nothingsostrange.com – I lost the plot about three pages back.

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Date
20020108

Time
14:49
Wendy’s founder Dave Thomas has died at age 69, but he lives on in our hearts.

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Date
20020108

Time
15:26
Did anybody else hear a ‘whooshing‘ sound?

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Date
20020108

Time
16:22
Psst! Wanna see some pictures of fainting goats?

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Date
20020108

Time
16:44
Tee-hee. Techies behind the Debenhams site have hidden a few Easter Eggs in the search engine. An example? Until yesterday, a search for ‘jugs’ brought up a list of Wonderbras. There’s probably lots more, but unless the individual involved was sacked way back during the last industry ‘correction’, chances are that they’ve all been found and cleaned up by now, especially after coverage in NTK and The Register. Still, you never know. Try a few euphemisms yourself and see if you can find anything they missed. There might be a free gift certificate in it for you.

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Date
20020108
It was 20 years ago today…
Time
17:31
OK, I admit it, I cried – but I was 12 years old for Dog’s sake! Sadly, no one thought to take a picture, otherwise I could have uploaded it to the E.T. 20th Anniversary site. Shame, that.

I showed this movie to my kids recently. Their strongest reaction was a sudden craving for M&M’s.

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Date
20020109

Time
09:18
You really have to worry about someone who would get so excited about a ride-on My Little Pony.

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Date
20020109

Time
09:35
True fame for Anne Robinson at last; she just made the No.1 spot on Blackwell’s annual worst dressed list.

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Date
20020109

Time
09:55
Want to be free to marry your cousin? Stand up and be counted! [UPDATE: An anonymous emailer has just pointed out that ‘folks what come from Alabama aren’t the only ones into inbreeding‘.]

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Date
20020109

Time
13:25
Dog bless the geeks who saved Usenet. Without them, a large chunk of the Usenet archives would be lost forever and we would be none the wiser about Star Wars gossip from 1982.

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Date
20020109

Time
15:25
Would you like to get paid £50,000 a year to look at pornography? The Internet Watch Foundation may have just the job for you now that former CEO Jim Kerr has unexpectedly turned down a five-year contract extension. His deputy, Ruth Dixon, has also declined to take on the role, deftly described by Kerr as a ‘unique position’ for which there is ‘no natural career background’. Indeed.

For more details about this challenging position and how you might fit into it, see the job description in the news section of the IWF site.

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Date
20020110

Time
08:54
I saw this a few weeks ago, but neglected to blog it. Sir, yours is a very bad hotel (browser-based slide show). While we’re on the subject of public complaints, you might want to take a peek at this classic; The Dough.

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Date
20020110

Time
09:04



Anime office rage. Cool!

(408Kb animated GIF)

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Date
20020110

Time
09:11
Apparently, President Bush meant no disrespect when he called Pakistanis ‘Pakis’. Perhaps part of our ‘special relationship’ includes lessons in etiquette from Prince Philip.

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Date
20020110

Time
09:28
For those who think that Lord Of The Rings is a little too long, here’s the short version. Somewhat akin to the classic Tarantino version of ‘Hamlet’.

(Warning – contains some dangdoodle cusswords…)

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Date
20020110

Time
09:36
And finally, before I get on with some actual work this morning; Blogstickers – a weblog craze that’s currently spreading like wildfire, and expected to last for at least another two or three days.

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Date
20020110

Time
10:24
Builder criticised by Australian safety watchdogs for ‘driving without a seatbelt, destruction of council property and not enforcing building site visitor safety guidelines by allowing his secretary on site without a helmet’. Goes by the name of Bob.

(While we’re on the subject, check out the Eminem Vs Bob The Builder Mashup at Diffusion. Now one year old and an idea I’ve grown to regret…)

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Date
20020110

Time
12:02
Cheap fuel to be obtained by blasting hydrogen out of the ocean with orbiting laser cannons. What a fabulous time to be alive – unless you’re a fish, that is…

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Date
20020110
Chancellor Of The Dance
Time
13:58


As if Hamsterdance wasn’t enough – now we have Hamsterdance 2. However, both pale into insignificance next to hitlerdance.com (and even this ‘me too’ version over at Geocities).

During the Second World War, newsreels showed Hitler doing a jig after the fall of France in 1940. He didn’t actually dance this jig, as many of you know. Allied ‘journalists’ looped the film, making him appear to dance when all he really did was stamp his little foot. This footage of him doing a little dance at Berchtesgaden is real, though. Enjoy.

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Date
20020110

Time
15:32
Waddya know? Democracy works! N’Sync has been cut from Star Wars Episode II because, and I quote, ‘people made a big deal about it’. Maybe next we can get George to change that title…

[UPDATE – The revolution’s started baby, yeah! More than 1,800 petitioners are threatening to boycott the next Austin Powers movie and any merchandise sold unless they take Britney Spears out of the film.]

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Date
20020111

Time
08:54
A warning for anybody stupid enough to Spam.

(Warning – contains some dangdoodle cusswords. Thanks go to Seán for the link.)

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Date
20020111

Time
08:58
CNN reveals that sex sells. Well, duh! Look for the terrestrial broadcast version of The Naked News, coming soon to a channel near you.

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Date
20020111

Time
09:05
Design, as with any artistic skill, is a very personal thing. Because of this, many, many, many people delude themselves into thinking that their site is a visual extravaganza, when in actual fact it’s a load of crap.

webpagesthatsuck.com has been cataloguing such personal and professional offences for years and, to no-one’s surprise, most of the worst offenders are hosted at Geocities. Finally someone’s thought to present a decent directory of crappy Geocities sites, including those that are fake and those that are, tragically, very, very real. See them and be amazed – then go and take a good, hard look at your own efforts. OK, so your site’s about Scotland, but do you really need that tartan background and bagpipes .wav?

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Date
20020111

Time
11:26


This, I suspect, is one of the main reasons why they make kid’s markers non-toxic. I don’t know what disturbs me most about this picture; the state of that baby, the angelic look on the face of the alleged culprit on the left, or the fact that Mum or Dad saw fit to pause for a photo opportunity before cleaning the poor little sprog up.

Shows like America’s Funniest Home Videos hold similar mysteries for me. I mean, if you were watching your beloved offspring being run over by a lawnmower or attacked by the cat, would you rush to help or stay where you were, keeping that camera rock steady and in perfect focus?

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Date
20020111

Time
11:50
Here’s an online clock that’ll put lead in your pencil. My hands are tired just from watching this.

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Date
20020111

Time
16:03
Arrrrrrrgh!

The Crackermatic Case Study is finished at last – but my brain hurts!

I need some soothing pictures of cows, yes I do.

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Date
20020111
BritneyWatch
Time
16:14
A maid (better make that ‘ex-maid’) from Boston’s Ritz-Carlton hotel says she was fired after she called Britney Spears’ room last month and demanded an apology because one of the pop star’s security guards flashed her. Could it be possible? Remember, this is the princess of clean, famous for her virginity that we’re talking about here. Would she really allow naked security guards to run around in her hotel room? Puh-lease!

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Date
20020111

Time
16:24
Apparently a hospital is legally obliged to get consent for a penis amputation. Good news for anybody going under general anaesthetic, but be careful what you sign when they have you hepped up on goofballs.

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Date
20020111

Time
16:34
From the ‘If One More Person Sends Me This I’m Going To Scream’ department comes this quick link; see if you can spot the ghost. Look carefully, now…

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Date
20020111

Time
16:48
Web-based youth charity YouthNet UK is to use a £850,000 grant from the National Lottery to set up an interactive advice service. Perhaps they can just advise the kiddies on how to screw the government out of pots of dough. The domain name ringringblingbling.com is still available. Just a thought…

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Date
20020111

Time
17:01
The Gospel Gangstaz say Jesus is Lord, mother&*%£ers.

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Date
20020114

Time
08:49

Well waddya know? We’re worthy of inclusion in the Blogstickers hall of infamy.

Pity I couldn’t be bothered to think of more than one…

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Date
20020114

Time
08:57
Not a bad meme. Bloggercode, very much like the Geek Code of yore, lets me distill my life into one line of seemingly meaningless characters. This is fine with me, because life is pretty meanlingless in itself.

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Date
20020114

Time
09:03

Life Imitates Ant

Eighties pop star Adam Ant, of “Stand and Deliver” fame, has been charged with assault and possessing a firearm after an alleged incident in a London pub. ET has the story, as does Ananova.

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Date
20020114

Time
11:35
Good for a laugh, but only if you’re a not an animal lover. Even if you are, you can show it to your cat and make his day; Harvey the Mouse Must Die.

This reminds me of a little stunt I pulled back in my nightclub deejaying days. We lived above a nut and sweet factory and a carpet warehouse, and as a result enjoyed a veritable hoard of mice invading the kitchen. Clever little buggers, too – always seeming to escape unharmed with whatever bait we used in the mousetrap.

Eventually, we set up a video camera wired up to the VCR and TV in the sitting room and watched/recorded the action ‘live’. We soon found out how they were doing it, set up the bait accordingly, and, after a few tweaks of the system, finally got one.

That weekend, I ran the 2 hours of footage as a ‘visual’ on the dozen or so screens we had in the nightclub and announced a game of ‘Spot the Mouse’ (the first punter up to the booth with each confirmed spotting got a Jack Daniels and Coke). Everybody enjoyed playing the game, and you could feel the tension in the room every time the mice went for the cheese and escaped with their lives. In fact, they did this so many times (5 in all) that it came as a very real surprise when, 2 hours later, one finally bought the farm.

The nightclub ran a sound system totalling about 3000 watts. In short, close to deafening. That didn’t stop you hearing, quite clearly, half of the room screaming in protest and the other half cheering with joy. A defining moment in nightclub culture and animal cruelty.

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Date
20020114

Time
12:21
Renowned snake-oil salesmen Yahoo have stooped to palmistry of all things. Apparently there is a ‘strong intuitive side to my nature, which may border on psychic or mystical ability’. I knew they were gonna say that…

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Date
20020114

Time
14:13
Convicts Reunited was started as a spoof version of the very popular site Friends Reunited. I say ‘started as’ because now they have over 3000 subscribers who have ‘lost contact with old prison inmates or maybe looking for fellow cons for their next bank job’. Here’s looking up your old cell number…

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Date
20020114

Time
15:26
Must remember this if I ever have Hello! magazine round my place and want to add a touch of class:

Rent-A-Chook.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020114

Time
16:15
From The Ultimate Insult comes this link – a totally useless office skill for every day of the working week.

Today: Sending Endless Faxes.

The title of the page (if not the content) reminds me of the sad old days during the dotcom gold rush when I had to share the responsibility of wading through CVs from web design wannabes. I got regular giggles from applicants who would would (and I kid you not) feel it necessary to pad things out with the following:

Software Skills:

Internet Explorer 3, 4 and 5

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115
Waitrose Discover Usenet
Time
09:35


A consumer recently x-posted to uk.local.london and uk.food+drink.misc with details of his surprise discovery in a Waitrose product as follows: “Inside the creamy mash, thankfully before serving, I found… A RAT’S FOOT. It is too big to be a mouse’s, IMO…

So far, so normal. The usual advice followed, from ‘sue them for millions’ to ‘forget telling Waitrose, tell Environmental Health!’

What I wasn’t expecting was a response from Waitrose, x-posted to the same groups, thereby (shock, horror) identifying and acknowledging Usenet as a valid and important public forum.

The guts of the message claimed that said rat’s foot was actually ‘an irregularly shaped, very thin fragment of vegetable material’ and yes, before you ask, the message is a genuine one from Waitrose. Headers reveal the NNTP-Posting-Host as 62.172.110.49, which traces back to John Lewis Plc.

What Waitrose didn’t do, however, was post this message within the original thread, which would have made the posted information more immediately accessible via the archives.

Oh well, we can’t expect them to get it right overnight.

[UPDATE: OMG, less than six minutes after I made this comment in the groups concerned, and (tahdah!) Waitrose did indeed repeat the post within the original thread. Someone is actually paying attention…]

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115

Time
10:46
Useful information from PETA: How To Stop Your Dog From Humping Your Leg – and no, it’s nothing to do with this very old and very off-colour joke.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115

Time
10:59
It’s fun. It’s cute. It’s violent. Cutie Quake. Play it.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115

Time
11:02
Boosh, doosh, b-boosh, d-doosh – do the iMac!

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115
Photoshopping
Time
12:10

More Photoshopping fun to be had over at Fark.

You do know who to vote for, right?

[UPDATE – We’re No.1! We’re No.1!]

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115

Time
13:31
Carol can count! Everybody trusts Carol. (Well, not everybody. Complaints upheld by the ITC include this isolated incident and this, erm, ‘isolated’ incident. Hang on…)

Now, I’ve got nothing personal against Carol Vorderman (apart from the fact that Internet help books she appears on are not written by her, are mostly full of outdated junk and, even worse, sell much better than mine) but enough is enough.

I’m sick of seeing her in print, on television, and now in banners, selling health and financial products to the gullible of nature and the slow of mind. In fact, I’m so outraged, I feel honour-bound to alter her latest banner ad. Not that it’s going to make a lick of difference apart from making me feel a whole lot better…

[UPDATE – I’ve just been reminded that Carol actually saw fit to plug my book on at least one occasion. Call me ungrateful if you like, but it’s clear to me from that opening paragraph alone that the core of this content came from my book, and all I get in return is one lousy link. At the very bottom of the page. With no accompanying text. I’d hardly call that a ‘plug’. Maybe next time I’ll send her a little brown envelope stuffed with cash. Or Anthrax. You’ll pardon me for being bitter, but Carol Vorderman reduces my tolerance level…]

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Date
20020115
Ant In Other News…
Time
14:40
A statement on Adam Ant’s official site claims that the gun involved in the incident reported yesterday was a replica, and not a real gun. I guess that makes it OK then.








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24-31 December 2001

24 December 2001

09:10
Ah me, the simple pleasures in life. Years ago, I used to be a hardcore DC junkie (with Superman, Batman, Impulse, Lobo etc. on regular order). Sadly, these days I’m way too poor to enjoy this kind of luxury, but on Saturday I dragged my sorry butt down to the comic book store in Guildford and enjoyed a solid hour of poking through the remaindered boxes. 25p a comic, ladies and gentlemen – can you imagine the joy of such a bargain? Several gems were found, and much catching up took place.

09:12
This should keep you busy for at least a few seconds – ohnoitisnt.com. All that’s missing is a few thousand chevrons and a dedication to Usenet.

09:19
Here’s a nice follow-up to that whole Sainsburys/Virgin spam debacle. Assuming you care, of course.

09:42
A big collection of Lost Highways for you to ponder over. On the same subject, while the Third Reich didn’t quite last the thousand years some expected, a few of their Polish Autobahns are still making a go of it.

(via memepool)

10:09
Hammer your bandwidth and treat yourself to a bloody great computer animated short this Christmas. This piece starts a bit slow, but the pace improves dramatically once the creator/director gets over showing off the scenery he’s so painstakingly created. Definitely worth the download.

11:10
Between 1130 and 1300 GMT on Saturday the 22nd of December, a 15 year old girl was attacked and pack-raped by a gang of youths in our local shopping centre:

BBC | Reuters | Sky

According to a press report I read on Sunday (no link available, sorry) she was first accosted in front of McDonalds in the upper level food court. This is always very, very busy – probably doubly so this past Saturday. There’s nearly always a security guard posted here too, due to the high number of youths who hang out in the area.

Despite this, she and her friend were in a position where they felt harassed enough to run from the group of teenagers. With The Friary being built like it is and all reports referring to her having some clothes torn off while going up an escalator, it looks like they were pursued for some time, up and down a few levels, through one of the busiest places in Guildford – then led through the (always busy and well-lit) covered land-bridge that gives access to the Bedford Rd car park. Right past the cash machines that always have a queue of a dozen or so people (layout and map).

The fact that an uninterrupted attack could take place in the stairwell of a full-to-capacity 1200-space car park holds no surprises, though. There’s some construction going on there at the moment, so a lot of sections have been boarded shut or obscured by hoarding (with, we can presume, little or no construction staff at work in this glorious holiday season).

Apart from that it all but defies belief, but reports are coming in of inconsistencies in the story and the management of the Friary is questioning the police version of events, saying that CCTV footage was being examined and that they had “no information to suggest the attack started in the shopping centre”. We shall see.

Detectives are appealing for anyone who saw the girls or the gang of boys to contact them at Guildford CID on 01483 531111, or to call Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

11:57
Well, I’m off home. Please do try to have a safe and happy Christmas – and don’t do anything stupid like drive with a few drinks under your belt, OK? Merry Christmas, Joyeux Noel, Frohliche Weihnachten, Prettige Kerstdagen and Feliz Navidad. If I’ve missed anyone, just click here for the rest.

27 December 2001

10:31
Then one foggy Christmas Eve,
Santa came to say:
“Rudolph with your nose so bright,
Won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”
Then how the reindeer loved him,
The bloody hypocrites.

(Oh, and here’s the Secret Origin of Rudolph.)

10:40
Many unkind comments have been made about the covers of my books. Perhaps next time, I’ll use the O’Reilly Book Cover Generator. Or not.

11:07
This snowball game is nice and violent, with excellent Kennyesque figures on the winter warpath. However, if you just want to piss off the neighbours, then nothing beats a bit of target practice.

11:19
Check out this guy’s phat toilet. Racing stripes make the jobbies flush away faster, yes they do…

(lifted from b3ta’s messageboard)

15:27
Once again, apologies to bacon lovers who’ve ended up here because of that stray link in the mailbag (’tis all explained in the archives). Presented here for your troubles (and, hopefully, for your enjoyment) is what passes for a men’s fashion store in the Netherlands – and yes, they do have a website. Enjoy.

16:00
How disappointing. I’m nowhere near as evil as I thought I was.

16:07
Are ads less effective on cluttered sites? I don’t know – why don’t you check out this rather cluttered site and find out?

16:13
The BBC are re-broadcasting the 1981 serialisation of Lord Of The Rings. Ho-hum. I’ve read the book, I’ve seen the movie – the orc did it both times. So much for the ‘hollywood ending’ theory.

28 December 2001

09:43
It’s beginning to look like the seemingly impossible scenario of a teenage girl being dragged through a busy shopping centre and raped without anybody doing anything is just that – impossible. Latest reports indicate that Friary management have scoured the CCTV footage and found nothing. The investigation continues.

09:50
A popular link yesterday; Pedestrian Killer . So popular, in fact, that demand regularly overloaded the server. Access seems a little better today, so go and try it if you must – just be warned that it’s non-PC and far from challenging.

10:50
The latest challenge at fark is to Photoshop this ad for MSN Broadband.

My entry’s in a little late for this one – but it was worth a try all the same, I thought.

You can see the comp and vote (for me, please) here.

11:37
The latest edition of Celebrity Bestiality arrived hot off the presses today with the inside scoop on the Winona Ryder shoplifting saga. I look forward to attending the rally on January 11th.

13:11
Well, it’s official. Tempo just bit the dust and just about anybody with goods under warranty (from about 1997 onwards) should consider themselves well and truly screwed. Even if you were stupid enough to fork out for that great British rip-off, the extended warranty, Tempo regrets to inform you that ‘you are an unsecured creditor and if your product develops a fault (you) will not receive payment from Tempo’. Tempo are, however, helpful enough to provide a list of manufacturers should you wish to delude yourself into thinking that they’ll happily accept a passed buck or three – and good luck with that. If you want more information, the Tempo site is down, down, down at the moment, but some navigable information from just before the collapse is still live via Google’s cache.

13:46
I’ve just been honoured in alt.humor.best-of-usenet – doubly so in that they considered my little ditty worthy of Rot13 encryption.

15:14


Sorry gang,but I feel that it’s my duty to remind you that this is far from the end of the matter. Now we’ll have to tolerate 12 months of multiple solo career attempts.

For the record, it should be noted that the former members of the all-dancing, non-musical-instrument-playing ‘supergroup’ insisted that that there was no animosity involved. Of course, this statement comes from a group that as little as a month ago insisted that the release of a ‘greatest hits’ album didn’t mean that they were breaking up in the near future.

A subtle hint as to why appeared amongst much tearful babbling on a Steps messageboard. Said one poster:

“If they split up a few weeks ago they wouldn’t have sold as many CDs and merchandise over the Christmas period. By splitting up the day after Christmas they have made sure they have sold enough to make sure they never have to work in Tescos.”

Whisper campaigns have already begun, and Claire seems to be copping the best and the worst of it. Her solo album must be due first, then.

Be afraid.

15:52
Got a hand like a claw? Sign here, please.

16:56
Aww… look at those cute, smiling little kiddies. Why are they so happy? Because Daddy locks his gun away before going out to get liquored up.

31 December 2001

10:01
Bored at college? Who isn’t? Tell you what; next time you’re on campus, you might want to impress contemporaries with your skills in the ancient art of Squirrel Fishing. While we’re on the subject, here’s an interesting theory regarding squirrels and why they act so nuts (pun intended).

12:14

Worth1000 is now fully beta-tested and ready to roll!

The public site will launch tomorrow, so if you’re not too hung over to focus on a few pixels, get over there for the inaugural Photoshop challenge, involving a picture of the webmaster Avi, a NYC cop, Drew from

fark.com and some woman who just wanted to be in the picture.

Play nice, now.

13:04
My weblog twin is a woman! Now it’s official – there is something fundamentally wrong with the universe…

13:08
Britney no longer a virgin. World in shock. Film at 11.








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14-21 December 2001

14 December 2001

10:02
We may as well launch with some history, which is big this week. Google has just released the new Usenet archive, which goes back 20 years. An article on the first ever website can be viewed here, or you can browse a few others here. This is all pretty dull until it’s put into context, that’s why you should try out the Wayback Machine to see past incarnations of sites you actually care about. I downloaded the Alexa Toolbar (complete with a one-click Wayback button) from this site a few weeks ago and have looked back since.

11:04

I’ll archive some of the old stuff I’ve been doing at fark.com soon, but in the meantime, here’s today’s effort; a rehash of the Kentucky quarter.

You can see the competition and vote (for me!) here.

[UPDATE: After being ignored for much of the comp, I somehow ended up with 10 votes. Must be a glitch in the system…]

15:14
According to Winona Ryder’s (alleged) lawyer, the (alleged) actress’s (alleged) arrest for (alleged) shoplifting at Saks Fifth Avenue is “all a misunderstanding” (CNN). Riiight, and Mariah Carey cut herself on broken crockery. When will people learn that celebrities just can’t be trusted?

17 December 2001

11:19
George, for a movie director, you’re one heck of a visionary genius.

Click here to sign the petition for Peter Jackson to Write and Direct Star Wars Episode III.

11:25

b3ta’s latest challenge is to photoshop Jesus. I mixed mine with a classic Carol pic. Do be warned that viewing this image will *reduce* your intelligence…

[UPDATE: Hey, hey – this image made the front page of b3ta! I’d more be impressed if there was money in it, but there you go…]

12:11
I love it when an optimisation come together! While I was hoping for a little better than 7th on Google for ‘christmas cracker’, being No.1 for ‘send christmas cracker’ and ‘email christmas cracker’ is pretty cool. Being featured on SeeThru’s weblog helps, too.

12:25
Help save the the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus!

13:18
He shoots, he scores! Thierry Henry should have hurried home after the Dec 4 match against Juventus. A burglar ransacked his house while he was still away on Dec 5, and Henry got home just in time to untie the poor housekeeper.

13:54

I’d almost forgotten that I’d taken this picture. I must remind myself to submit it to bacon before the end of the day. It does offer two childish giggles for the price of one, after all.

Oh, and yes, the Titty Ho Motor Company does have a website.

14:10
Instead of giving your partner the usual perfume or aftershave, give them a goat… erm, which World Vision will then deliver to a family in Kenya. (I know what you were thinking, you sick little puppies!)

World Vision’s ‘smiles’ site is aimed at the Australian market (where else in the world would it be acceptable to give your boss a Zambian toilet?) but if you live elsewhere and feel you must give something that doesn’t take batteries, check out the international site for World Vision or make a donation to The Human Fund.

15:17
Here’s my major farkin’ effort for today – Sofia ‘washboard’ Loren. You can see the competition and vote (for me! for me!) here.
[UPDATE: 25 votes and 3rd place for this one – and I don’t mind at all. Alienmagic’s colourisation was spot on – as was the ‘higher concept’ simplicity of Bad_CRC’s effort. Ho-hum.]

18 December 2001

10:53
See the new Spiderman trailer! (Erm, that would be the one without a big web spun between the twin towers of the World Trade Centre, I’m guessing…)

11:31
Thank Dog 2001 is almost over; it’s been a very dangerous year for celebrities. Latest to go is Stuart Adamson, lead singer and guitarist for Big Country. See a list of notables who have passed on this year here, or check out the list from the deadliest year in living memory, 1997.

15:21
So whatever did happen to Mark Edwards, who recorded the excellent album ‘Land of the Living’ in 1986? Judging by the level of design on the single covers and the quality of the videos, WEA must have thrown some money at it – but this guy just dropped of the radar and hasn’t been spotted for over a decade. Ricky Fataar had something to do with the whole project, but he doesn’t answer my emails. Perhaps this whole thing is a conspiracy to keep 80’s rock guitar off the charts?

15:31
Beta testing at Worth1000 proceeds apace. I tried to break the system with a large file, but ended up fouling it backwards by featuring the hitherto unencountered technology of GIF animation. You can see the stupid picture of an orangutan that highlighted this bug by clicking [link removed. you don’t need to see this 568KB .gif]

15:58
I’ve received two surprising unsolicited emails over a last few days, one for Sainsburys Mobile and one for Virgin Wines, and both originating from eachweek.net (who interestingly have no web presence to speak of apart from their laughably sincere privacy policy). I’ve since received a heartfelt apology from Virgin Wines that I regrettably cannot quote from here due to the confidentiality statement in the sig file – but suffice it to say that it looks like both companies were sold an opt-in mailout, but instead found that their promotional material went out to a spam list than can be bought at any disreputable website for ‘the incredibly low price of $49.99’. A symptom of cost-cutting (we can probably assume), and a lesson learned (we can only hope).

16:43
Wahey!

Crackermatic just featured on Radio 2 as their Website Of The Day. Just this morning we were noting that we were on the very cusp of exponential growth (pardon the jargon) but needed ‘that little something extra’ to push it over the edge. This oughta do it. I say again: ‘Wahey!’.

[UPDATE ON THE UPDATE: hehehe – our techie guys have already been forced to change the scale on the traffic graph to fit the new figures on the screen. They’re just about to change it again.]

19 December 2001

09:11
The ideal gift for the woman who has it all (and would like to keep it warm), Nipple Warmers made of real possum fur. Not just any old possum fur, either – this is nothing less than New Zealand Eco-Fur. Apparently brushtail possum numbers in NZ are way out of control, and the only way to keep numbers down is to use their fur to warm the nipples of the world. It’s anti-static too, which is a comforting thought.

09:48
You know those loud American car salesmen that shout at you from the TV? Imagine what their website must be like. Turn those headphones on, people – and watch out for pop-ups!

(finagled from fark.com)

12:00

Just what the world needs – a Christmas Tree Server. Yes, this Christmas tree is 100% self sufficient, in that it actually serves the web page that it features on. You can even click on links at the page to make the tree play music that only the technogeeks in the adjacent office can hear. Let’s all go there now and crash the bastard. I want to see that tree catch fire!

13:00
No wonder orcs are so hungry for hobbit flesh – they spend most of the time stoned out of their minds.

13:33
Golddiggers! Meet the man of your dreams!

15:27
More farkin’ photoshopping; this time a reworking of the devil promoting the Euro.

20 December 2001

09:44
Life wasn’t always this easy. I used to have to travel to and from London every day for work – a return journey of about 4 hours. The bulk of this time was spent on South West Trains. You can imagine how much fun this was, I’m sure. About this time last year I wrote a rather strong (and rather long) letter of complaint, which resulted in a personal reply from the MD himself, Mr Andrew Haines. Andrew turned out to be a right gent, and offered to sit down with me and talk through some of the issues at hand. When I insisted that the meeting include the dozen or so reprobates that I travelled with each day, he didn’t even blink. Andrew put in a very good showing at this meeting, and even picked up the hefty bar tab – but enough about Andrew for now, let’s get back to the aforementioned reprobates, some of whom had been making the same run (or a longer one) for decades.

While not always getting together in the morning, we would more often than not travel home as a group on the 6:15 out of London Waterloo in the carriage affectionately known as the ‘front smoker’. This was always a laugh; they’re a great bunch of blokes. They even have an annual Christmas party on the train, which I made a special trip to join last night. Trust me, there is a point to all of this, and here it comes…

When the festive and jocular Mr West described the carriage as being ‘reserved’, I honestly thought he was joking. He wasn’t.

The kindly Andrew Haines from South West Trains had directed a member of staff to rope off a section of the carriage, adorn it with the signage you see to your right, and decorate it with balloons. A typically magnificent gesture from a hardworking man. Be you a commuter or staff member with South West Trains, please do take my word for it that, despite all that has happened in the past with the trials and injustices of privatisation, the company could not be in better hands. I salute you, Mr Haines. God bless your choo-choos!

09:46
I submitted a picture to ilovebacon a few days ago – but for some reason Rob chose not to show it, and instead included a link to my site in the mail bag. That means that about 9000 fellow bacon-lovers are due to drop by today, possibly under the impression that I’ve cynically and coldheartedly plugged my own site.

Rest assured that this is not the case. Indeed, now I feel honour-bound to provide said visitors with a suitably baconesque image for their troubles, so here’s a picture of a bollard in the red-light district of Leeuwarden that looks a bit like a willy.

10:20
Crackermatic is still going gangbusters. The plug on Radio 2 got us about 15,000 cracker-senders in one day, creating a much bigger user base which is now building at a fantastic rate (yesterday, over 30,000 crackers were sent – that’s doubled use in one day). Even Americans and Canadians are sending them now, which is quite silly because most of them don’t know what the bloody hell a cracker is. So, for the benefit of our cousins across the pond, here is the history of the cracker in a nutshell.

11:03
(From a conversation started in alt.ozdebate.)

I was 16 years old and on an interstate holiday with my parents. I called my girlfriend on a public phone with a pocket-full of change to wish her a Merry Christmas. She chose that moment to dump me and tell me all about the cool surfer she was now going out with. The conversation cost me $2.40 and broke my fucking heart. That was my worst Christmas, what was yours?

16:07
Bloody hell! What a day! Busy, busy, busy. Still, I did manage to find this dynamite flash number. If you think Crackermatic is too cutesy, then this is for you.

17:00
You think you know the meaning of Christmas? Think again.

17:14
It’s been 4 years since I last travelled on a plane. I have the feeling it’ll be another 4 years before I do so again. If Spectacular Approaches doesn’t scare you enough, then perhaps you should go on to check the odds of surviving your next trip at amigoingdown.com.

21 December 2001

10:07
For Dog’s sake, children! Leave milk and cookies out for Santa by all means, but keep the champagne, sherry and malt liquor locked away in the drinks cabinet! One of these days, Santa is going to fall off a rooftop or crash his sleigh into a mountainside. You wouldn’t want the death of twelve flying reindeer on your conscience, now would you? Here’s a fun game to warn you of the evils of drink and the possible consequences for Santa. Learn the lesson well.

10:33
How quickly they forget. alt.fan.princess-diana is now the burnt-out shell of a once-great newsgroup. It seems a pity that Di never made any music when she was alive. Perhaps if she did so, then her star would still be burning bright like those of so many dearly departed recording artists.

On that note, I remain firmly convinced that if Di were alive today, then it would be she and not that fuzzy-haired bint recording ‘Something Stupid’ (and rolling around naked) with Robbie Williams. Here’s a picture to help you to come to terms with the idea.

10:57
All my life I’ve been very, very bad at playing video games – but I seem to have mastered Joust Pong in no time at all.

12:09

All hail our glorious alien masters! I got my entry for b3ta’s weekly Photoshop challenge in nice and early today. A thumbnail really doesn’t do it justice, so if you want to see the full image, click here.

12:47
It’s hard to classify this next link. A 15-year-old boy, in hospital and terminally ill with cancer, discussed his dying wish with the resident child psychologist. He wanted to have sex (not, I should stress, with the child psychologist). Was there a happy ending? Find out.

13:57
My favourite sci-fi villain, my favourite physicist and my favourite song all in one place? It seems too good to be true!








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