Sunday, July 31, 2005

80s - What's On TV???

Does anyone remember The Old Fox or the other programmes on DurDarshan before the glorious advent of cable?

If you feel the need to refresh your memory, go here.

Glug glug

I was watching the Discovery channel earlier tonight, and they had this documentary on, about the sinking of the Titanic. They have on occasion had a Titanic week, a Titanic weekend and a Titanic Live Television Special. I hear they have plans to make a Titanic Musical Documentary and a Titanic Documentary Told Through Interpretive Dance.

Now my views.

The fucking ship sank. Get over it.

Most of the world, or at least your audience knows that it sank. The iceberg is no longer a secret either. We know about that big hunk of ice. Yes, it was a tragedy of monumental proportions, but honestly do people have to keep going back to the ship again and again and again and again?

And even if you keep going back to the ship do you feel the need to inflict your murky underwater videos upon your hapless audiences? Go down to the ship if you want to, but respect the dead and do not fucking film their tomb any more.

Cut the program short. Here, I’ll do it for you, “Ship. Iceberg. Collision. Tragedy. Parasitic Filmmakers. Cut and that’s a wrap.”

However, if any one of you happens to be eaten by a shark, an octopus or a large aquatic modern dancer, do film it. I’d like to see that.

And for those of you who do insist on seeing those programs, I reiterate, the fucking ship sank. Get over it.

A final note, to last night’s town drunk, I still plan on blogging about your, what I shall for lack of a better word, call, shenanigans.

Friday, July 29, 2005

Gah!

I hate the word "kiosk". I really truly do.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

"The plane! The plane!"

A friend is advising me to get a tattoo around my left upper arm. I do not think it is a good idea.

A tattoo on a Computer Science graduate student is as incongruous as a sheep getting up on its hind legs and offering to go three rounds with the wolf. No holds barred. Hitting below the belt allowed.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

0.25 > 1

I live in twisted universe. Here, the rules of physics and science and the fancy strings that hold the universe together are on permanent hiatus. Getting drunk and stoned and thoroughly embarrassing the more sober patrons of …um wherever they are. Up is Down, Down is Blue and Green is hung over and wondering who that mime in bed with it is.

So, to sum things up, the universe around me is fucked up.

Now you may wonder why I have come to this conclusion. It’s quite possible that you aren’t wondering. Well, then in the words of the talking hamster, “Go jump off a cliff”. Actually what the hamster said was nothing so PG, and prominently featured the words fuck, telephone pole and an anatomically improbable manouver that might even be illegal.

Must concentrate. Focus on the general fucked-upness of the universe.

When is 0.25 greater than one?

The answer is when the 0.25 is a quarter and I need to do my laundry at the washing machine in my basement that accepts only quarters. And as expected I do not have any quarters and the supermarket around the corner does not have any quarters and the Laundromat next to the supermarket has decided to shut down early. Just because I need the quarters. At that point standing in the rain (Oh it started raining when I reached the supermarket), I would have gladly traded each dollar bill in my wallet for a quarter. Not four quarters, or three or two but one. Just a lone, solitary quarter. (Slight change in tense and many grammatical errors. Be nice and ignore them.)

(In my best 8th standard voice, emulating the second Kid (A subtle dig there, my friend)) Hence, from the previous paragraph, we have proven that when the universe is seriously fucked up, and trust me the universe is seriously fucked up, 0.25>1.

On what some people would call a happier note, two extremely attractive women moved into the apartment below mine. On what I would call a much, much sadder note, my lease ends in five days and I will be moving out of this apartment. Shoot me now. Aim for the head. Make it quick.

And this is creepy. Turn on your speakers. Enjoy. Or not. I don't care. I still need a couple of quarters.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Gadzooks!

I figured out how to upload pictures to the blog.



I'm now a moderately satisifed and mildly sleepy camper.

Chocolate can be a bad idea.

Stay with me on this one. If you aren’t a graduate student living away from home, visiting maybe once every year or every couple of years it might be tough to do so. But do try. I’ll give you a cookie if you are sincere about it.

Visiting home is always wonderful. But there is a slight problem. What do you buy for the folks back home? If you aren’t an experienced shopper like me, it can be rather traumatic. I treat my shopping like a hostage rescue operation. Get in. Liberate the hostages. And get out as fast as possible. I usually can mange to escape without too many things attaching themselves to my person. Occasionally, I might have to run the gauntlet of over eager sales people trying to unload on me, but I usually manage to escape with some very adroit maneuvering. Only once have I been caught when a lady sprayed what I think was mace into my face and paralyzed me.

However, that is beside the point. I’m talking about a particular subset of shopping, “The week before I leave for India” shopping. When I visited I got lucky. I managed to have my folks give me a list of what they wanted and I did not mess that up too badly. However, everything I bought out of my own initiative was pretty much a disaster. I won’t go into the details. Let’s just say that my parents were very amused. And rather insultingly, not in the least bit surprised.

One thing that used to be a sure shot were chocolates. Under our previous socialist regime, Indians were denied the horrible capitalist influence of imported chocolates. So if you brought home chocolates by the gallon/kilogram/bushel, you were welcomed home with open arms. Relatives would drop by and you could dump chocolates upon them as you polished your halo of “Ability to shop well.”

Knowing this, I bought chocolates by the gallon/kilogram/bushel when I visited last year. A smart move I thought to myself. You can’t go wrong with chocolates. “Huzzah”, I cheered in the silence of my head. (My head is mostly filled with assorted people from an Elizabethan Black Adder episode. But that is a story for some other time).

Unfortunately I had huzzahed too soon. The universe in its infinite wisdom had decided that fucking me over was a good idea and so proceeded to do so with distasteful alacrity and an enthusiasm that horrified me.

The government had decided that imported chocolates were no longer a menace. (The Swiss had stopped their misadventures on our southern borders. No longer was cheese thrown at unsuspecting fishermen out at sea, and no longer were…that’s all I know about the Swiss. So let assume that the Swiss had stopped doing that typical annoying Swiss thing which I’m too lazy to look up.) The aisles of the supermarkets were bursting with chocolate of all races, brown, black and white. Some of them had nuts and…Must resist urge to make dirty joke…and some were triangular. So when I landed at home with my proud consignment, people took one look at it and said “Pshaw”. They turned their noses up at my bourgeoisie chocolates and mocked me in public. (Yodeling!!! The Swiss had stopped yodeling in the south). So that was bad. And I have a bit of a sweet tooth. So I ate most of the chocolates instead of giving them to the people who hadn’t mocked me. (Sorry grandma. Really.)

Well, the point of all this is that, I still haven’t figured out why a certain person is taking home two packets of Doritos. Two LARGE packets of Doritos. You know who you are.
(Told you I was going to blog about it. [Insert Evil laughter here])

Friday, July 22, 2005

Victory is mine!

I couldn't look at my PC interface anymore without retching. So I followed the instructions given by these nice people, and now my desktop looks enough like my powerbook interface that the urge to burn my eyes out has abated.

Now all I need to do is find a Safari port for XP and I'll be good to go.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Yay, blogs are cool.

I just saw a program on how influential blogs are and how they are shaping political opinion.

However, when people stop talking about how influential blogs are and how they are shaping political opinion, that’s when I'll know that blogs have become truly influential in shaping opinion.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

It was TEH HAXORZ!!!

Sex, sex and more reproductive activity in GTA:San Andreas, so clicky clicky click click.

Stop squeaking you filthy bastard

Why is it that I always end up with a shopping cart with squeaky wheels? I pick one out at random, from the group hanging out in front of the super market, and I invariably end up with the one that does has a stand-up act and whose finisher is its famous imitation of a mouse squeaking his love for life and the spring and the glory that is nature.

Not all shopping carts squeak the same. There’s the timid squeaker. This agreeable shopping cart will squeak occasionally. Just a timid, little squeak to let me know that it is alive and that it is contemplating the state of my sneakers.

Then there’s the continuous, but considerate squeaker. This one will squeak without a pause, but not too loudly. It’ll let you carry out a conversation while it provides the background sound effect. Nothing too obtrusive, just a hum, you know, like every spaceship has on a sci-fi show. Except that it isn’t a hum but is a “squeakysquakysqueaksqueakysqueak.”

Then there’s the loud obnoxious squeaker. It’ll squeak at the top of its mechanical lungs without a break. Like a bullfrog in the springtime, except that it does not croak but goes “SQUEAKYSQUEAKYSQUEAKYSQUEAK.” It takes savage pride in the fact that every one in the supermarket can hear it. Heck everyone in the supermarket in the next town can hear it.

Finally, there is the shopping cart that is the essence of pure evil. This villain bides its time until the moment is right. Lurking in the shadows pretending to be that rarity, a completely silent shopping cart. It bides its time until you notice that hot woman who strides the aisles with an admirable disdain for restrictive clothing, and gather up the courage to smile at her. And as you make eye contact it hollers “SQUEAKAFUCKINGSQUEAKEDYOURASS
SQUEAKSQUEAKITYSQUEAKSCREECHBOOM
BANGSQUEAKTADAAH” with every bit of energy in its metallic body. And as you try to slink away unnoticed it laughs at the top of its voice, “SQUEAKHAHASQUEAKHAHAHA.”

Incidentally, I did have a completely silent shopping cart today. It was wonderfully mute and picking out my eggs, milk and cereal was a pleasure.



...Until the left front wheel fell off in the parking lot.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Reality TV pisses me off

Somebody please stop the reality television. There seem to be six hundred reality shows on television today, each with their version of reality. There’s one with Hulk Hogan and his family, there’s one with a fat actor from Predator 2 trying to lose weight, there’s one where a bunch of hicks are un-hickified by a rich lady, whose only claim to fame is that her daughter is a dirty ho and there's one where teenagers get plastic surgery.

I'd like a channel where they aren't looking for the next big pop star, and aren't interested in the reactions of attractive people to the knowledge that they are going to be eating maggots. A channel where I do not have to see the inner lives of drunk and stoned celebrities, their spouse(s), their mutated spawn and their disgusting pets. A channel where reality TV means the News.

One exception. FX is running 30 days with Morgan Spurlock, a reasonably good fish out of water series. It takes people out of their normal milieu, dumps them into a lifestyle far removed from that and lets them squirm for my vicarious pleasure. I’ve seen a couple of episodes so far, one with a homophobe living with a gay roommate in San Francisco and another with a conservative heartland Christian living with a Muslim Family in Dearborn.

Predictably, both the subjects undergo sea changes in their attitudes at the end of their respective months.
Were the changes genuine or were they hammed up for the camera? I haven't a clue. However, it's good entertainment. I suppose that that is all that matters.

Definitions

The wrong definition of atheist from Dictionary.com:
One who disbelieves or denies the existence of God or gods.

The correct definiton of atheist from Miriam-Webster.com:
One who believes that there is no deity.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Just a roll of quarters please.

To the people in charge of the Uni-mart at the corner of Atherton and Allen, when I ask for a roll of quarters I want a roll of quarters. I do not want a packet of Trojans.

If I did want a packet of condoms (yeah right!), I would say, “Ahem ahem er um can you give me that latex anti-reproductive device.”

I do agree that it is a bit strange to have someone pop by at four in the morning and ask for a packet of chips and a roll of quarters. However, I was hungry, I needed to do my laundry and I keep odd hours. Perfectly reasonable isn’t it?

To recap, in future, when I ask for a roll of quarters do not hand me a packet of condoms.

Clarification: I was sober and unfortunately was returning from my lab, and not from a hard night of partying.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Good Vibrations

A summary of events so far.

December 2003, the Dept. of Computer Science and The school of Information Science and Technology move into this building, variously refered to as "That architectural marvel", "A landmark building" and "A concrete vision of the future" by the establishment, and referred to as "That functionally useless pile" by yours truly.

But I digress. That was not the point of this post. Onto today’s episode.

The point of this post is that the building vibrates. It vibrates like a humming bird on caffeine, like the string of a guitar, like California during a little one. As you may imagine, the denizens of the building, phlegmatic though they may be, do notlike this. Especially graduate students, who are delicate wonders of nature and will wilt in an environment which is in the least bit harsh. So they complained and so did a few others I guess.

The response, Linda M. Hanagan, PhD, PE states, “it is recommended that the occupants be assured that the vibration levels observed are in no way an indication that the floor structure was insufficiently designed for strength. In fact, the amplitude of motion observed is so small it is nearly insignificant from a structural strength point of view. It should also be noted that it is unlikely that a cost effective alteration to alleviate the problem can be found. In the beauty of soaring cantilevers is also flexibility that can result in perceptible vibration levels.”

A dissection of this response.(I'm resisting the urge to put in bullets here)
"L**** * ********, PhD, PE".
Translation: I'm smart and you are not, so shut the fuck up. kthxbye.

“It is recommended that the occupants be assured that the vibration levels observed are in no way an indication that the floor structure was insufficiently designed for strength.”
Translation: Vibration is good.

“In fact, the amplitude of motion observed is so small it is nearly insignificant from a structural strength point of view.”
Translation: Vibration is still good.

“It should also be noted that it is unlikely that a cost effective alteration to alleviate the problem can be found.”
Translation: Well, it really isn’t all that good, but after spending sixty million on this building, we’re fucking broke.

“In the beauty of soaring cantilevers is also flexibility that can result in perceptible vibration levels.”
Translation: Vibration is still good. In fact it is better than good. Vibration has been known to cure the common cold, short sightedness, baldness and even erectile dysfunction. It isn’t a coincidence that Vibration and Viagra both start with “vi”.

I’m pickin’ up good vibrations
She’s giving me excitations
I’m pickin’ up good vibrations
(oom bop bop good vibrations)
She’s giving me excitations
(oom bop bop excitations)
Good good good good vibrations
(oom bop bop)
She’s giving me excitations
(oom bop bop excitations)
Good good good good vibrations
(oom bop bop)
She’s giving me excitations
(oom bop bop excitations)

Funk...off

Deleted- because blogging when your code decides to bend you over, and treat you like an Ottoman soldier interrogating Sir Lawrence is a bad idea.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Book Tag?

Chilli has apparently decided to book tag me. So here goes.

I read the back of cereal boxes. Sometimes I read captions for advertisements.

That's it.

Fine, I'll complete the tag later. "grumble grumble".

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Substitute Thesis for Paperback

Paperback writer

Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book?
It took me years to write, will you take a look?
Based on a novel by a man named Lear
And I need a job, so I want to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer.

It's the dirty story of a dirty man
And his clinging wife doesn't understand.
His son is working for the Daily Mail,
It's a steady job but he wants to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer.

Paperback writer

It's a thousand pages, give or take a few,
I'll be writing more in a week or two.
I can make it longer if you like the style,
I can change it round and I want to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer.

If you really like it you can have the rights,
It could make a million for you overnight.
If you must return it, you can send it here
But I need a break and I want to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer.

Paperback writer

Paperback writer - paperback writer
Paperback writer - paperback writer

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Absurdity

Sweeping generalizations and ill informed assumptions used to justify absurd conclusions.

I am occasionally guilty of this sin. Bite me.

Absurdity…I’m too polite to call it stupidity. I’m being diplomatic. It’s one of the many things that I’m good at. One of the other things I’m good at is plugging someone’s unsuspecting ass with a crossbow in the Stalkyard.

I’m too tired to sleep. I’m stretched out on this couch with a boneless languor that only a grad student who has no time to stretch out can achieve. The apartment is a mess. I would blame my roommates but…Oh what the hell I’ll blame them. It’s entirely their fault. Execute them.

Yawn.

I really did yawn. And I decided to share that with you.

Small gripe. Code that works on one browser should fucking work on another.

Good night.