Tuesday, October 31, 2006

My new investment

It's an Apparatus for Facilitating the Birth of a Child by Centrifugal Force. I think it will be big. Especially if we give away a complimentary mop and bucket with each purchase.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

I'm in the doghouse

I'm on the doghouse, actually -- or my words are. Someone named Viviane e-mailed me from this architectural firm in Austin, Texas. She said they're making a doghouse for a charity event, and they wanted to use the text from this blog entry. They were kind of late asking me about it -- it was like the day before the contest or something -- and I kind of got the feeling they might have gone ahead anyway. Usually that kind of stuff annoys me and I might say "No" just out of crankiness, but they did ask me, and it was for charity, and it turns out that Viviane is quite hot, so what the heck. I said, "Yes." (I'll leave it to the reader to guess which of those three factors was the most decisive.)

Anyway, you can see the results here. It's a most unusual doghouse, for which they apparently won the prize for "most original." I guess I'm now a published author, even if it was published on the side of a combination doghouse-sofa.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

North Korean News Item of the Week [Now with Commentary!]

From Korea News Service:

Important Days of DPRK Observed
Pyongyang, October 25 (KCNA) -- Meetings were held by the Polish Communist Party [too easy], the Genuine Lumumbist Patriotic Party [Down with the unpatriotic fake Lumumbist running-dog lackeys!] of Democratic Congo and the Communist Party of Malta, lectures were sponsored by the Congolese Socialist Party and the Socialist Party of Peru and round-table talks were organized by the Misr Arab Socialist Party [I don't know what "Misr" means in Arabic, but in English it's a good way to address cross-dressers if you're not sure whether they prefer "Ms." or Mr."] of Egypt from October 6 to 11 on the occasion of the 61st anniversary of the Workers' Party of Korea and the 80th anniversary of the formation of the Down-with-Imperialism Union (DIU).

On display in the venues of the functions were photos showing the exploits performed by the peerlessly great persons [I feel sorry for the ordinarily great persons -- nobody ever wants to look at photos of their exploits. "Please, won't somebody look at these photos of my exploits?" "Your exploits?! Bah! You have peers."] in the party building and their Songun leadership. [They call it "Songun" leadership because everyone says "Son (of a) gun! What leadership!]

Speeches were made there. [They were short.]

Martin Adam [Funny, he doesn't sound Polish.], chairman of the National Executive Committee of the Polish Communist Party [OK, just one. How many Polish Communists does it take to screw in a lightbulb? A thousand and one: 1 to screw in the lightbulb, and 1,000 to build a time machine so they can go on living in the past.], said President Kim Il Sung formed the DIU and provided the historic roots for the party building, adding that this marked a historic event as it meant the beginning of the building of a revolutionary party of the working class.

He highly praised Kim Jong Il for developing the Songun idea [Son of a gun! What an idea!] which originated from the DIU as the most scientific and revolutionary guiding idea as required by the developing reality and leading the cause of independence against imperialism to victory while meeting all the challenges of the imperialists with his tireless Songun leadership. [Son of a gun! His fellow delegates praised Mr. Adam for managing to use the word "Songun" twice in one sentence, but took off points because it was a run-on sentence.]

At the end of the functions the participants watched "The Country Taking on More Beautiful Looks under the Leadership of the Great General," "Military Parade and Mammoth Demonstration for Celebrating the 55th Anniversary of the Glorious Workers' Party of Korea" and other Korean films. [Following which, the participants woke up and returned to their hotels.]

Friday, October 27, 2006

Apartment Story

Once there was an apartment building, full of happy people. They grew to be almost like a family. They laughed and cried together, fought and made up, watched each other grow and change. But the apartment grew run down, turned into a slum, partly because of the tenants and partly because of the absentee Slumlord. The tenants weren't happy. The Slumlord grew embarrassed because her building wasn't like the other buildings in the neighborhood. It had a bad reputation in some circles.

Never Wrong drove by and said, "Look at this awful building. The people who live there are horrible." In fact, Never Wrong drove by repeatedly to say this to the tenants. The tenants said, "If you think it's so bad, why don't you move in and help fix it up?" She said "No way. You people are just too horrible." She took her complaints to the Slumlord.

Meanwhile, a Laudable Person in Her Own Mind moved in. She said, "Look at this place. The tenants throw trash everywhere." Then she scattered her own trash all over the building while loudly complaining about other people's trash.

The tenants held a meeting. "We've got to do something about this place," they said. They came up with some ideas on how to do it. The Slumlord showed up at the meeting. "Those are good ideas," she said. "I'm going to manage this building personally now."

The tenants were angry. Several of them said, "You Slumlord. You have no business running this building. It's your fault it got into this condition in the first place."

The Slumlord said, "How dare you call me a slumlord!" and evicted several of the most prominent tenants. All the supers quit. Several long-time tenants moved out.

The tenants who left already had another place to live. It wasn't as fancy a building as the one they left, it was quieter and in a less fashionable neighborhood, but they were all there, running it themselves without a landlord.

Even so, many of the former tenants were angry. They picketed the old building. Some of them threw eggs at the building. Some of them used false names and pretended they wanted to move in; then they threw more eggs. The Slumlord was in over her head. She had no clue how to actually run an apartment building. Never Wrong volunteered to be the new super. Slumlord and Never Wrong said they would make the building better by evicting anyone who littered. When old tenants pointed out that nothing happened when new tenants littered, Slumlord and Never Wrong said they would evict anyone who complained about the way they ran the building. Laudable Person contributed by throwing trash at former tenants whenever she saw one.

Most of the former tenants were content in their new building. But some of them kept going back. Two of them moved in for awhile under false names to see how they'd be treated and then moved back out. Several kept showing up at tenant meetings. Another moved in under a false name and settled down. Another went back and gave Never Wrong a manual on how to run an apartment building.

Another former tenant -- one of the first three evicted for insulting the Slumlord, in fact -- was confused by this. He liked to look at the old building -- he thought he'd seldom seen people sillier than the Slumlord, Never Wrong, and Laudable Person or a more amusing sight than the three of them trying to run an apartment building -- but he never went to their meetings. He thought the best revenge was making his current building a nice place to live and allowing the old one to decay on its own. "Why go back?" he asked his friends. "Sure, we have good memories there, but it's just a building," he said. "A community is made of people, and the people are here in this new building. Why go back and associate with the likes of Slumlord, Never Wrong, and Laudable Person? It makes no sense to me." He wondered how the story would end.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

North Korean news item of the week

Every week, I'll be keeping my readers (all three of you) up to date on important developments in the North Korean situation.

From Korea News Service:

Anniversaries of Works of Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong Il Observed

Pyongyang, October 17 (KCNA) -- A seminar in the field of fine art took place here on Oct. 16 to mark the 40th anniversary of famous work of President Kim Il Sung "Let Us Develop Revolutionary Fine Art National in Form and Socialist in Content" and the 15th anniversary of famous work of Kim Jong Il "Theory on Fine Art." The speakers said that the famous work of the President scientifically clarified the characteristics of Juche-oriented fine art, its mission, content and style and specific ways of developing it, thereby providing important guidelines for developing the fine art of the DPRK into a revolutionary and popular fine art serving the Party and the revolution and contributing to the accomplishment of the people's cause of independence.

Kim Jong Il has glorified the President's idea and theory of Juche-oriented fine art, they noted, adding that he in his work explained the importance of portraying the leader in creating fine art in the era of independence for the first time in history and indicated the true way for the Juche-oriented fine art to creditably fulfill its revolutionary mission.

Thanks to the idea of developing fine art with main emphasis on Korean paintings the fine art of the DPRK has developed to be a genuine popular fine art which is distinctive in its national character and reflects the feelings and aesthetic taste of the people, they stressed.

They called for upholding the immortal feats performed by the peerlessly great men in the field of fine art and creating more fine art pieces representing the era of Songun

Friday, October 20, 2006

Voluntary Muscle Gals

The Zuiikin Gals show you how to use your voluntary muscles to remember troublesome English phrases:



Crime is a big problem in English-speaking countries, but your shoulder muscles will help you remember what to say:



But you mustn't get bewildered:



Because the Zuiikin Boys join in to teach some useful Japanese:


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

How I became a Mormon (in verse, with apologies to Bob Dylan)

God said to kurinbo, "Join my church, son."

Kuri said, "Man, you must be putting me on."

God say, "No." Kuri say, "What?"

God say, "You can do what you want kuri, but

The next time you see me comin', you better run."

Well Kuri says, "Where do you want this joinin' done?"

God says, "Over in LDS Ward Number One."

Monday, October 09, 2006

Teh cool

I got the updated version of iTunes 7(.0.1.8) a couple weeks ago, and although I'm not usually into giving out free advertising, I actually think this feature is pretty cool:

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You can see the cover art for what you're listening to.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Caution: These peanuts contain peanuts (please don't sue us)

My daughter bought a package of butter toffee peanuts:

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On the back of the package is a warning:

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This warning is necessary, because otherwise, someone who is allergic to peanuts might buy these butter toffee peanuts without realizing they contain peanuts, get sick, and sue the peanut company for not warning them about the peanuts in the butter toffee peanuts.

Yep. This is the kind of country I live in.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Where I live

Since some people have been wondering, I've decided to reveal where I live:

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Now you know.

Monday, October 02, 2006

I just happened to come across this new product, and I was so excited I registered on an internet forum so I could tell strangers about it

This spam just showed up in a forum I used to belong to and now lurk in once in awhile. (I'm not going to link to the forum, since its Great and Powerful Guide kicked me out -- why should I send traffic her way?) Anyway, the spam, which is a pretty common type, went like this:

"Someone sent me this exciting message. I watched the 'making of' program yesterday, and this looks like a great documentary—maybe even a good missionary tool. [etc.]"

Yeah, sure guy, it was so exciting that you just had to register on an internet forum you've never visited before so you could post it there. Happens all the time. Why wouldn't anyone believe that?

Seriously, what is it with people like this? Why do they pretend to have no involvement with whatever they're promoting? Why is it that they feel they have to pretend that they're a random person who randomly happened upon this random product and was so excited that they signed up on a random internet forum to talk to random strangers about it? Why do they think there's anyone dumb enough not to see right through them? Why don't they just say "I/my relative/my friend am/is involved with this product, and I think it's pretty good. Check it out if you're interested. Thanks."? That sort of ad would certainly have a lot more credibility with me than their dishonest stupidity does.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Botox, anyone?

Botox fascinates me. You know what botox actually is, right? The "bo" is for "botulin," and the "tox" is for "toxin." According to Wikipedia, "botulin toxin is a neurotoxic protein produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. It is the most poisonous naturally occurring substance in the world." It's not just poison, it's poison produced by a bunch of nasty bacteria that grow in rotting meat. And people pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to get this poison injected into their faces. They should just come to my house; there's plenty of stuff in my refrigerator they could just rub on instead.

So who dreamed up the idea of using botox for cosmetic surgery? Who was the first doctor to sit down with one of his patients and say, "You know, if I were to inject this deadly poison into your face and paralyze some of your facial muscles, you'd look much prettier"?

Or maybe it was just an accident. It all began with an attempted murder, when a doctor tried to kill his wife:

CUT TO INT. THE OPULENT HOME OF A DOCTOR AND HIS WIFE

DOCTOR

(Brandishing needle) I'm going to kill you by injecting your heart with this deadly toxin!

WIFE

No! No!


A struggle ensues. THE WIFE is jabbed in the face with the needle.

WIFE

Ouch!

DOCTOR

Ha-ha! But wait -- suddenly you've become beautiful! Oh Darling, can you ever forgive me?

WIFE

(Singing) I feel pretty! Oh so pretty!


THE WIFE and THE DOCTOR embrace.


NARRATOR

And thus, the cosmetic use of botox was discovered. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off for my own treatment. It's not just for women anymore!


FADE TO BLACK.