Pirates are Cool.

Captured bits of life... Pirates at no extra cost. Arrrg. Also cool: Zombies, Aliens, Ninjas, Dinosaurs, Vikings, the Noble River Horse, the Sinister Octopi, Robots and Kittens.

Sunday, April 30, 2006

This is the end my friend, my only friend, the end

What did you do on your last night on residence?
Well, I walked down to the PetroCan with Jack and got some A&W. Then I played some computer games.

Lame? Maybe. But whatever. I'll be back in four months time to cause some more trouble. Perhaps I'll try and stir things up a little in this end of the city? But, well, whatever, what comes will come.

I feel like I should lay the smack down on some nostalgia right about now, but to tell you the honest truth, I've had enough nostalgia for one week. I've been in contact with a few old friends from high school that I haven't talked to in ages (a year... two ... depending on who you ask). And you know what? It was alright. Always good to hear from old friends.

However, I can barely resist doing a little bit of a year in review. Some highlights include:
  • Seeing Sloan for free
  • The Mardi Gras Party
  • Russle Morton Brown's Lectures on the Bible and Literature
  • Brewing our own J-1 Beer ... ahh, Brüe
  • The approximately ten times I saw Barn Owl preform (awesome)
  • Making Ishmael with Candice and Luke
  • A Waltz in the shadows of El Dorado (all I'll say is that bottle of rum got me in more trouble than any bottle has any right to)
  • Becoming the Zinc Saucier
  • Gavin's Revenge (the maple leaf). And his hate list.
  • The "Harry Potter Incident"
  • The Wiz, the entire weekend of the Wiz, and thusly the friendship with Version 2.0. In fact...
  • Seeing Low live with J-bo and Version 2.0 (among others) ... my favourite concert of the year
  • The Ice Fortress
  • West Hill Allumni celebrations (wax mannequin in the fall, Plus the new years party back home)
  • "Fuck you you fucking Plate don't fuck you're cuping cup fuck at me ass hole" [Green vomit]
  • Bustin' into the indie rock scene with The Singapore Noodles
  • Of course the last Fossil Night of the year, with Chittka's antics

Of course, I've left out everything important. I'd say the best part of the year in general was living with Paul, Rayn and Gavin. It was good times. Too bad none of them are living on res next year. Looks like new adventures for me in the future. The question is, who will have to put up with me next year ... ?

Friday, April 28, 2006

What would Freud think?

So, you ever notice how classic robots often have one of two types of voice: An electronic sort of hollow monotone, or a beautiful female voice?

I mean, whats up with that?

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Where oh where did my Gorgon go?

There is considerbale debate among the scholars as to just where the concept of the Gorgon came from. It factors into the myth of perseus fairly largely... I mean, he goes and beheads Medusa and all... but the Gorgon's head shows up a lot of other place in greek art, with no connection to Perseus' myth. One place is on the bottom of attic wine cups, perhaps in an attempt to suggest that intoxication makes one vulnerable to bad magic.

What we're all forgetting is that the scholars are in fact people who study and not party, and are thusly largely unaware (or, only have a cursory awareness of) beer goggles. I mean, say it's the bronze age, you're hangin' out with your fellow heroes after a sucessful boar hunt or city sacking or something, and you drink a few two many attic wine cups full of wine, and you're thinking that Spartan girl that Polydictus brought to the party is lookin' pretty fine. You drain your mug of wine and BAM! Medusa, staring you right in the face. It serves to remind you that Polydictus' Spartan girl is actually not that attractive, you're just suffering from the bronze age equivalent of beer goggles.

I mean, the ancient greek culture was honour based, right? The men often gave up one wife for a better princess (Jason and Medea, anybody?) - so you've got to figure, being a little shallow is built into their lifestyle.

That's my theory. You get the ugly Gorgon's head in the bottom of your wine cup to help prevent your suave heroic self from making some poor choice you'll regret in the morning. Like becoming the husband of some spartan tramp and accidently losing your kingdom because you have spurned your wife, the former king's daughter. Or something. I'm sure you'd get banished from Attica is you made out with Polydictus' Spartan friend - breaking some sort guest-host relationship, or something.


Come to think of it, I kinda wish I had one of those Gorgon mugs.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Gmail Spam part III

Normally I wouldn't keep pulling the same gag, but there is something about these spam messages I get in the gmail inbox that make me feel like they should be shared. Some random computer using using a predetermined bank of words to create non-sense messages... but in some twisted way, they come out with some profound (if grammatically flawed) pseudo-story. Its like narrative poetry meets Exquisite Cadaver meets Hal 9000.

This shit would definitely blow the minds of both Karl Jung and The Surrealist (litererary) Movement. Its like the collective unconscious... except created by a machine! (keeping in mind that somebody originated the word bank)

Anyhoo, without further ado:

turning steps being thus parents, thats rich not speaking.
is different edge the steps, is nothing added different filled,
steps or respect my reference night.
he whom mentioned or, bought next gym similar.
or again shining you. mentioned explain she window fly. different explain appearance she end,

-Latricia Corina

Monday, April 24, 2006

666! The number... of the Beast!

Studying for my bible and lit exam... Paradise Lost is the topic. I run across these lines in my notes:

"Envy not possible in hell --> everybody equally bad off"
But Satan, you want to be first among the fallen

I guess I've taken to havin a dialouge with satan in my notebook. Maybe it contains a demon and needs to be exorcised. The Power of Christ compells you, notebook! the Power of Christ compells you!

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Pirates vs. Ninjas ... IN SPACE

First off, I feel it important to thank both Rosemary and Jack for setting me on this train of thought. After some discussion of the issue with both of them last evening, I feel that it is an arguement worth sharing with the interent at large.

Secondly, I would like to point out right now that just because I am obviously pro-pirate, this does not mean that I am con-ninja. There is an age old debate (some may say feud) between the two groups. Who would win in a fight? I say it's all subjective. I will not say one is better than the other, because I honestly believe that they are evenly matched. Ninjas travel alone, are stealthy and excellent fighters. Pirates travel in large groups, are drunken brawlers, loud and clumsy, but they're tough and weathered from years on the open sea.

So, although a ninja could outfight your average pirate, a ninja cannot necessarily outfight your average fifteen pirates. Bruce Lee might have been able to, though.

Besides, neither group really has the moral high ground. They're both brigands and theives. So you see, they're pretty evenly matched.

So why do people think that one group is better than the other? Like I said, its all about the subjectivity of the fight. Numbers, as mentioned, play an important role. But more important even than numbers is the geography on which the fight takes place. For example, in any sort of forest ninjas have an unprecidented advantage, whereas were some ninjas to attack a pirate ship, they would be finished. The deabte as to why this is true can be left for another day: Today's discussion is on the important geography of "IN SPACE."

In my discussions, it seemed that in the forum of IN SPACE, Pirates had the advantage. I will admit that Rosemary had some convincing arguments for the ninja side and that I disagreed with her assesment of ninja superiority, because I was advocating the Pirate side. Seeing that we could not solve this dilema on our own, I asked an impartial third party for his opinion: Jack believed that Ninjas would be at a disadvantage IN SPACE.

The arguements ran something like this: Ninjas would be able to harness the energy of the universe to use it against the pirates ... something about toaism that I didn't fully understand, but it seemed to me like this energy harnessing isn't something that they couldn't have done while still on earth - I mean, it's accessible anywhere in the universe, right? So how is this an advantage in space? (This is an open question, please feel free to answer it. This debate is far from over, I'm just giving my views.) So, the ninjas it seem don't get any advantage from mystical energies.

The Ninjas furthermore would be but at a disadvantage in a zero gravity environment. Although they are renound for their speed and agility, as soon as gravity is gone, this means nothing - everybody must learn how to move in a low or no gravity environment. And, the pirates may not have as well trained bodies, but once those bodies weigh relatively next to nothing, the muscles can do things they couldn't before. Zero gravity, it seems, levels the physical playing field between the two factions. And if Science Fiction has taught us one thing, its that hardcore fights in outer space always happen when there is no gravity. I mean, Moonraker, anybody?

Of course, the title of IN SPACE also leads to more questions about subjective geogrpahical location. Is it literally in space with space suits, or between pirate and ninja spaceships, or on space stations, or on another world?

If the fight is in space suits, then I think the pirates have the advantage. The discussed negating of the ninja agility bonus in a no gravity environment would affect the ninjas' ability to fight, but the space suits would further encumber them, causing them to lose more of their agility advantage. The pirates, meanwhile, are used to being somewhat cumbersome. Furthemore, Ninjas are always at a disadvantage in open areas - as mentioned, they are sneaky, and thusly do not fight well in open areas. Lastly - if science fiction has taught us two things, they are that hardcore fights in outer space always happen when there is no gravity and that space pirates always wear harcore armour, thus protecting against ninja stars etc.

The fight between ninja and pirate spaceships would probably be the most balanced fight IN SPACE between the two factions. Pirates may have a slight advantage in that they have been using ships since forever, but the spaceship isn't exactly like your average schooner. It comes down to technology and positioning when fighting with large spaceships. This isn't a real issue when the two factions fight on earth, because ninja's don't sail.

In a fight on a space station, I must admit, I think the ninjas would have the advantage. By nature, space stations are dark, sparsly populated, full of narrow passages, nooks, cranys, and ductwork to crawl through. Thus, the environment is perfectly suited for the sneaking ninja, whereas the drunken pirate is suffering from the "dark back ally" syndrome.

As for fighting on another world - well, you can assume that the world will have earth-like environments, and determining the winner of a battle on that world would of course again depend on the geography. It would be just like fighting on earth, but with mushroom trees and weird names.

So, it seems that ninjas do not in fact gain any significant advantage when fighting pirates IN SPACE. I invite your comments on this particular debate - I am interested to see what the world has to say on this issue.

Monday, April 17, 2006

You can tell I'm bored by the number of post I've been making

Jeff Martin - former frontman of the Tea Party. Now on a solo career.

Jeff Martin - still trying to be Led Zeppelin. Did you hear who his new drummer is? Same guy as the guy on Page & Plant recordings.

Tool returns. And I like it.

Vicarious by Tool. Seek it out if you are a fan. If not, then seek out the Patient and Schism first, then you'll get my point.

As any wikipedia going person would know,* Tool latest album entitled 10,000 Days is nearing release. It is a follow up to that title Lateralus you see on my sidebar under the "ultimate top five albums of time" heading. Its beena lot of years since Tool put out an album, so a lot of fans are pretty excited.

Vicarious was leaked to the internet a few days ago. The Tool nerds were all over it, analysing the shit out of it and imposing and reading into it all sorts of meanings that I'm sure Maynard never intended it to have, but that is beside the point. The point is, the Tool nerds were right about one thing - it sounds like some sort of extension of Lateralus, as one would rightly expect. However, I'm going to come out and say what the nerds cannot, because they would probably lynch eachother over this sort of issue:

Vicarious sounds like The Patient and Schism got mashed together. Musically and Themeatically, it is not Tool's most original work.

That being said, it still rocks out hard, and I recommend it to all.

* Wikipedia, although not reliable as a source for legitimate research, since it is user edited, is extreemly useful for one keeping their eye on pop culture for exactly the same reason. The fact that thousands of nerds, geeks and dorks (see "Common theories on the word 'Dork'" Pt.s 1,2 and 3) the world over are costantly editing the content of the most popular encyclopedia ever makes for the disemination of reliable news on any subject involving popular culture or cult followings (IE - something has a bunch of nerds that follow it religiously [exemptions from this grouping is attained through having other interests - eg, i may know everything about star wars, but i also know a heck of a lot of terry pratchett's discworld - I follow both, but neither religiously]). Thusly, when a peice of information, such as "tool has a new album coming out on may 2nd," is released in a press statement the average fan such as myself might not see, the nerds jump all over it and update wikipedia within hours - allow the average internet user to search an easily accessible site quicky for news as opposed to a large amout of time digging through old MTV articles. In summary: wikipedia is a great source for news on pop culture.
That being said, Sam Raimi is to direct the first major studio film adaptation of one of Terry Pratchett's novels. The Wee Free Men currently has a tentative 2008 release date. It is slated to go into production whem Raimi completes spiderman 3.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

I figure its possible

I've been getting half formed bits of dialouge in my head again recently. I think it means something is trying to get out. I suppose I had best get to writing something - perhaps a story about a guy who gets away with living in a univeristy. It totally could be done.

At UTSC, the solution is simple - cop yourself a free locker by daily monopolising a day locker in the gym - the gym, in fact, can also serve you in that it has showers. You are a student, so the gym facilities are not only "free" (technically, you pay for 'em with student fees) and there for you to use. There are a number of places to get food here at UTSC - it'd be expensive, but mooching and perhaps a regimine of busking could get you by. Also - pre-packaged foods that don't require cooking could be stored in your locker - also, there are microwaves for student use. Students sleeping in the school are no big surprise, you see it all the time. You wouldn't have a regular bed in so many words, you'd have to switch it up too keep those custodians on their toes, but there are places where even they don't go at night. Like the top of the s-wing stairwells, for example.
You keep a laptop of your own, you've got a PC that you can plug in pretty much anywhere, outlets are all over the school - with wireless access, you've got the interent, and even without both, there are still the library and the twenty-four hour computer lab. On those few days of the year when the school is closed (like christmas, etc) you can get away with things by a) going home or b) visiting a friend on res.

It could totally be done. The question is, who is gutsy enough to actually do it?

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Just because

just because I'll probably never have an excuse to use this sentence in real life, i thought i'd share it with you. Make sure to read it out loud with your best sarcastic macho voice.

"That guy is so clean he could drink a quart of milk and shit out a brick of cheese."

Monday, April 10, 2006

"That's my stapler..."

I just spent a few precious minutes of my life listening to the bare naked ladies and admiring a nearby stapler.

I couldn't help but note how ingenius a stapler is. It's a pretty complex little mechanism that serves a fairly simple purpose... and then I found this wholly satisfying website. I suggest you check it out.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

The things one sees on the TTC

Today's adventure included lots of excellent people watching opportunities. First and foremost, I must comment on the sheer number of babies and young childrens that were out and about today. It was mind boggling.

There were also lots of people with cameras and telephoto lenses. An inordinate amout, one might say.

There was a a girl wearing a cloak that appeared to be modeled after those in Lord of The Rings - only it was made of lime green felt.

There was an asian man whom I originally took for a bycicle riding robot, but I was soon proven wrong. His overly careful movements were not due to the bycicle he had on the subway, but instead due to the two kittens sleeping inside his jacket! This man was obviously not a robot, since kittens and robots are clearly mortal enemies.

There were also bicycle cops that reproduced through meiosis. Where there once were onlt two, there suddenly were three... it was strange.

Gmail Spam part II

More poetry from the confines of the gmail spam box. I hope you enjoy the profound messages in these poems. I especially like Portia's.


window steps again love teach?
thats steps reading?
here back not leader,
fascinate added back, human anybody make window. added music arms.
somewhere am mischievous end. off profession respect edge development night? explain turning latter latter the slow.

-Kym Leighann


mentioned carefully window.
wrong anything suddenly anybody pride very? immediate filled reply few is explain? added beautiful speaking pretty.
drew gym thus, tying supposedto make how similar.
shining out evening benefit slow.
nothing whom shining.

-Doris Annabelle


steps the fascinate mischievous fly filled. suddenly added immediate steps mischievous mischievous.
fly or black friends. least my different anybody use. bad did very love evening anybody,
pretty immediate promised disappoint shining my. money nothing pride.
sugar goes steps why back? young slow motor very carefully.
you development rich mischievous benefit, edge explain carefully why here corner. parents thus drew off wife purpose.

-Portia Asia

Friday, April 07, 2006

The Acts of the Apostles

I wrote a song last summer that sounded good, but had lame emo words. It's always sort of bothered me that I rushed into those original lyrics, and I've wanted to write something a bit more sunstaintial since, but nothing ever really fit the tune.

I've recently also been playing this little finger picking jam that has been called "The Acts of the Apostles" in my head ever since I started playing it. The words that went with it were "Two men walked by claiming to have preformed a miracle in the name of Jesus Christ" ... like the apostles did in Acts.

Anyway, lo and behold, the two pieces of music fit together so well that they became one song this afternoon. Feeling inspired and thinking its probably time I wrote a song about Jesus anyway (I mean, it had to happen sooner or later), I took a little creative inspiration from Margaret Atwood's Surfacing and came up with the best hook ever: "Jesus is a dead man, up in the sky. Watching over us, all of the time." you'd have to hear it, but its pretty damn catchy if I may say so myself. Plus, I call Jesus a voyeur in the song... sittin' up there... all dead an' watchin' an' stuff...

Zinc Chef and Art Bar

There was another Iron Chef competition tonight. The forces of good food teamed up, and six mighty dinners were created for the judges. Once again, I only managed to succeed in placing second, however, it was a personal victory, because the first place team was J-4 (who i don't really know) not the girls of J-6, who won the last Iron Chef because it was rigged. Gavin and I, with our cooking team, put them in their place.

Of course, there was a team better than us. My Blackened Pepper Mango Chicken was only worth second in the eyes of the judge, so I do not deserve the title of Iron Chef. Zinc is a lesser metal than Iron, but still worthy (if the simpsons taught us anything), so I shall give myself the title Zinc Chef (plus I think Bender takes the title of "Zinc Saucier" when he wins Iron Chef in Futurama).

In case you've been intruiged by Blackened Pepper Mango Chicken, this is how you make it:

-Chop up some red pepper into small peices, then blacken them in a Cast Iron pan (it makes 'em sweeter, plus they go all dark red with black spots. It looks awesome and tastes great!)

-As your peppers are blackening, take a mango and skin it, then shop it up into bits. Take teh time to eat the meat still attached to the pit, because it tastes good. Put it in a dish, then top the dish off with some freshly squeezed orange juice (or use Old South, that works, too) Add a taste of maple syrup

-leave this in the fridge so the flavours mingle, and go cook some chicken. Gavin and I cooked it on a barbeque.

-When your chicken is almost done, take it off and throw it in your cast iron pan (it's still hot from the peppers, right?) Dump the peppers in with it, and what thehell, chop up some green oinions and add 'em for colour. Then, strain the mangos from the orange juice, and put the orange juice into the pan, too. Then add more orange juice.

-Add black pepper to taste

-The orange juice will simmer down into a quasi-thick good-tasting sauce, and perhaps might soak its way into the chicken a little, too. When you've boiled that orange juice down enought (it turns kinda yellowy-brown), toss in the mangos... they aren't to be cooked, just warmed.

-You were cooking Rice during all this, right? 'Cause you should have been. Slap it down on a plate, fish out one of the chicken breasts, lay that on the rice, then dump some sauce on top of the chicken.

Super easy and it tastes awesome!

For the second "half" of my post, I'll tell you that I played my guitar and sang to mixed reception at the UTAC Art Bar tonight. It was fun, and hopefully some people enjoyed the tunes I played. I believe I will become more involved with these art people - they're pretty cool.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


as I suspected, it was an italicized "V" in my recent post about V for Vendetta that was throwing everything off. Damn that fraction of pixelation that cause the V to veer into the space of the sidebar! As you can see, all italics have now been removed from my previous post.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Come back sidebar, come back!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Nineteen Eighty-Four for a new generation.

It was inevitable. If you read my blog, than you know that I jump on bandwagons... sometimes, early, sometimes late. The simple truth is, I feel the need to jump on the rapid moving V for Vendetta review bandwagon.

So, I actually saw the film, going to the theatre with much trepidation, as I have mostly heard negative reviews of the film. Some said it was of little substance, some that it was poorly made... one friend even remarked that V for Vendetta is "What would happen if Michael Moore made a comic book."

I'm not sure if I agree with any of these assesments. I think it was a wonderful film. I really honestly enjoyed it. The epithet I thought up for it you have read already - Nineteen Eighty-Four for a new generation. If you look at the film, which is based on a comic, it is easy to see how it was influenced by the famous novel by Geroge Orwell: England - England, Fingers - Thought Police, High Chancellor - Big Brother, Surveilance and propoganda both work in very simmilar ways in both stories as well.

The stories, however, differ fundamentally. The powerfully moving last line of Nineteen Eighty-Four is "He loved Big Brother." Winston, in the end, loses to the oppresive government. The final scenes of the film depicts what Guy Fawks was unable to do - the spectacular destruction of the parliment building.

A major theme of both novel and film is Hope. Winston loses it. The citizens of London in V for Vendetta gain it. The fundamental difference is the crux of the epithet.

The times now are not what they were when Orwell wrote Ninteen Eighty-Four. Many people view that novel as a warning - Orwell, for them, was a prophet of what could come if things went the wrong way in the very scary world of post World War II. The whole world had been subject to so much propoganada and destruction that nobody really knew what to think - Orwell warned us not to let the powers that be do the thinking for us.

In our time, the world is a different place. Our media is rife with propoganda even if we realise it or not. Michael Moore tried to show us - albeit hypocritcally, as he just turned the tables and use anti-Bush propoganada. V for Vendetta takes this growing realisation that the people have - this realisation that everything the TV shows can be taken for truth and flies off in a cinematic dreamland. The film acts like Orwell's novel, warning us of what could happen - biological warfare, the fall of Empire of the United States of America (there's some propoganda I have worked in there myself - notice the word "empire"), civil wars, food and water shortages. We, however, don't need more warnings against what could happen. The PATRIOT Act shows us that, in truth, Orwell's world is, in part becoming reality. V for Vendetta give us what Winston had taken away - Hope. Hope that justice and freedom will be upheld for what they are, and not be used as puppet words.

Although the Superhero dies in the end, it is not so much a tragedy. The end is uplifting, because when V kills all of the evil people that have created the dystopian world (and therefore himself), it roots the world of most (but not all) of the evil. What remains is himself - the last offspring of a corrupt society. He dies and the bad part of him, the part that was the corrupt british society, dies with him. But what lives on, in the population, is his hope that he held to repair the society that has been so corrupt. In the end he is figurativly, and literally, the vessle of change.

Political film? Yes. But tastefully done, not over-the-top anti-bush propoganada. More fantasy than reality - the politics - inescapable, but not so important to the film that the underlying left-wing values detract from the overall entertaining aspect.

All in all, I have to say, I probably enjoyed V for Vendetta more than any other film I've seen in the past year.