Monthly archives: January 2003


Bonsai trees are nice, but sometimes you get the feeling there’s something missing, like little people. Mambonsai solve that problem, building dioramas around the tiny trees. More here, and drifting into surrealism here. I have visions of doing this on a grand scale. If I ever get a property with a few trees there will be a whole village in the branches with rope bridges, pulley lifts, battles and hunts.

Now There's Lovely does exactly what it says on the tin, finding a Welsh connection- no matter how tenuous- wherever it can. As yet no Welshmen in the Bible, but several in the Declaration of Independence.

The largest ethnic group of signatories (16 in all) on the original draft of the American Declaration of Independence were Welsh! Thomas Jeffersons’ family who came from Snowdonia spoke Welsh too!

Hail to the king?

At last the first benchmarks for the new GeForce FX video card are out. I’m a bit disappointed by the results, it’s the fastest card on the market but only just. It’s a bit like the last two Star Wars movies: it’s okay but you were hoping for something more. Such are the disappointments of the geek lifestyle.

Meanwhile, if tales of impending war are keeping you awake at night then maybe you need a flashing blanket to lull you to sleep.

Sunday at the Office:

Ok. You need to bid for the White Mans Guide to Pimpin. How else can geeks get on the social scene? In addition, Steve Jobs at Apple has decided to branch out their core market into retail. It was only a matter of time. Once again, it is time to plug a favourite of mine, Hardware Pron2, and yes, dark overload, it is safe for work and home. Worth a click every time.

I have been looking into SImCity4 lately, but have found something much better in NationStates, like SimCity but without all the effort. And while on the gaming topic, the boys over at PopCap have devised another cool flash game.

Some people, read the webmaster of this site might like to know that DC Comics and Post Cereals have teamed up to have a create a villain contest. I am not sure if entrants are allowed from outside the States, but you could always lie or use my old address. I am not sure who my new villain might be, but it could be a presedential figure with no intelligence leading the last superpower in the world. Sound familiar?

A new issue of the The Onion hit the streets on Thursday. So much for working at the office on Sunday. I’m tired.

Breaking my Heart

Earlier this week, I posted a piece about songs in my life that were particularly meaningful to me. In it I briefly mentioned Amy Hunter, the girl I had the biggest crush on when I was 17. Imagine my horror yesterday when, checking my referrer logs, I found someone had come to me from a Google search for “Amy Hunter”+nude. I think (I hope) they were looking for a different Amy Hunter, because if I couldn’t get to see her nude then I don’t think anyone else should!

Heavensent- Chapter 9, Part 3

The patrol boat circled around seaward of Stran island and headed back into the turbulent waters of the inlet. They had been seeding the water with scuttling charges, hoping to shake loose any more human torpedoes like the one lying on the rear deck. Two engine men were examining it.

It was near impossible to see anything. The fresh water was glass clear and ice cold, but it was mixing with the warm, thick and murky sea water. The two flows curled around each other, creating a milky green wash. Still crewmen stared over the side, priming and tossing the scuttling charges at the merest hint of a shadow.

There was a cry from the high view. The boat changed attitude and turned toward an object on the surface. The autoguns opened up, churning the water around the barrel shaped target.

At the back of the boat, the engine men cursed as the sudden turn threw them over. The senior man stayed down. Certain he had heard something, he pressed an ear to the body of the torpedo. There was a low, insistent ticking. He shouted, screaming at his junior to throw the bomb overboard. They strained at the torpedo trying to lift it. Other crew members watched with confusion, what was this panic about?

The explosion obliterated the rear half of the boat. The front was thrown spans into the air, tumbling to crash upside down in the choppy water.


The British National Party has taken a council seat in Yorkshire. This looks bad, but it isn’t as big a disaster (or victory) as people like to make out. More people voted against them than for them (over 2:1), and you can bet there was a low turnout- most of the people who didn’t vote would have gone for one of the other candidates. What is interesting is that they intend to go for seats in Allerdale next time. This is quite close to home and I remember, a few years ago, reading that the parliamentary seat of Workington, within the council’s boundaries, was the third most white constituency in the country. Which is probably why they’re trying out there.

[Actually, Workington is the only place I’ve ever seen the National Front trying to sell their paper. This was in the mid eighties. Whenever we went shopping there on a Saturday I’d pop into the town’s big newsagent to get model magazines and comics and outside would be the NF man trying to sell The Briton, or whatever it was called. The amusing thing, for me, was that he was always shadowed by a Socialist Worker who would be across the precinct touting copies of the eponymous rag. I stopped visiting so regularly, but it stopped some time around when I went to University. Any Workingtonians dropping by want to tell me when?]

Bear? Bull?

If I had any money to do so, it could be getting to the perfect time to invest in shares as the market sinks. In most cases the only way, once the panic is over, is up. Though I’d probably have to be unethical and invest in defence companies to get the best returns (and airlines and related stocks are going to tumble even further when the backlash to Bush War 2 hits.)

Guilty Pictures

I have a picture of pretty, pouty little Avril Lavigne as my PC wall paper at home. Though, now that I know she’s only 17, I’m beginning to feel a little guilty and will probably take it down. Every Saturday, whilst walking through town enjoying the sights, I have this little voice in my head that occasionally pipes up with “That one’s not legal, stop checking her out.” I stop myself and pre-teens don’t even register for this kind of second glance (kids are a joy to watch for other reasons- their uninhibited enjoyment and reactions to the world around them), but I did look in the first place and for a moment my heart, and other parts, were rushing ahead of my head. It’s that pause- that understanding that, no matter how pretty she is, she’s too young for what you’re thinking- that doesn’t register with many viewers of child porn.

Still, the vast majority of kiddie porn viewers won’t do anything about their desires. Those that do would abuse anyway, the photographs for them aren’t the cause but an effect- something to display as a trophy. Governments approach this problem in much the same way as they fail to tackle drugs, locking up the end users may give you a warm tabloid glow, but it doesn’t stop the flow. It would be so much better to track down the sources and shut them down instead.