Showing posts from March, 2008

I don't know if this is for real or not. And I don't care.

Meat flavored water.
The product comes in a variety of colors and flavors to satisfy any palate. And whether you seek simple nutrition or serious energy enhancement, MeatWater delivers!

You are an active, attractive, successful person. So you're constantly searching for more effective, more efficient ways to perform the simplest tasks – especially eating! Protein shakes, energy drinks, powerbars are all ways people seek to get nutrients without spending all the time that eating requires. MeatWater addresses this impulse by creating a product in the marketplace that fulfills the desire for streamlined sustenance while embracing your inner carnivore.

Get Carpark!

News comes of the imminent destruction of the multi-story parking garage (and Get Carter film location) at the Trinity Gateshead Centre.
The car park was designed in 1962, when Brutalism was regarded as the cutting edge of architecture, but by the time that it opened in 1969, interest in the movement had begun to decline. The building's raw concrete weathered poorly, and by the time Get Carter was filmed the following year, the car park had already become an emblem for decline.Here is a page dedicated to documenting the process.

Finally, I decided to see if I could find the thing on Flashearth, but got a bit muddled. From all the different things I could find, I've managed to narrow the garage down to two places, shown here:

If I am understanding what I have found correctly, the site indicated by the lower circle is the garage. The upper circle indicates the structure that looks right to me.

Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.

In the last few months, we've been startled to discover that our mail has been arriving sometime in the middle of the night. A couple of times I have checked it at nine or ten in the evening, confirmed that it was empty and then found mail in it the next morning. We have three explanations for this.
We are sometimes the very first delivery on the mail route, and thus our mail is delivered at roughly 5 in the morning.
Our mail is being delivered to the wrong house and someone is putting it right in the middle of the night or early morning.Our Mail Carrier is a Vampire!

A little slice of Bootleg Heaven

Madness live in New Jersey, 1983. It's like the internet is calling me home.

My head hurts

Of all the bands that played this year's SXSW Fest, 763 offered mp3s for review. Paul Ford has listened to every single one, and gives them all a six word review.

Enjoy a few:

"I’m a sucker for thumb-piano."

"Open wide for this, NPR listener!"

"Their poor singer has a cold."

"Like a Simpsons parody of rap."

"Drums. Guitar. More guitar. Vocals. Guitar."

"Swedish metal, so thus utterly hilarious."

A reading life

One of the things that I keep on meaning to blog more about is books. My problem is that as I now tend to read for no other reason than my own enjoyment, I have gotten into two habits.
If I don't enjoy a book, I stop reading it before I am done with it. Then I forget about it.
If I do enjoy a book, I finish it and then go on to the next book without bothering to make any thought about why I enjoyed it. Then I forget about it.To help me get my book-thinking mojo back I signed into LibraryThing. This has done two things for me already.

First, it's allowed me to get a "currently reading" widget back up onto the sidebar. I see that it is currently already out of date.

The second thing is that it is providing me with an amusing look at the statistics involved with the few books that I've logged into it so far. Among the strange things that LibraryThing can do is offer you an "Author Gallery," or a nicely packed wall of thumbnail pictures of every author i…

Spring is arriving

And with it comes the online home repair quote requests.


Let's see what comes of this...

Odd moments in musical recomendation

After reading a couple of reviews of the new Dory Previn compilation cd (US,UK) and decided to see if I could find a track or two on imeem.

I found this:

Currently listed as the first in the list of related tracks is this:

I can't decide if I find that amusing or not. I think it depends on how the related tracks are generated.

I could have sworn we were in this forest before...

A music video to perk up your monday

"Georgette Plays A Goth" by Tullycraft

the touch of a world that is older

We are the Village Green Preservation Society

I've been noticing a few blog posts that use lines from The Kinks' "The Village Green Preservation Society" (you can find in on their improbably named The Kinks are The Village Green Preservation Society album.)

So what better to start up my lyricblogging than with the lyrics to this song. Let's see if I can find a post to match every single line (not counting these, of course).

To start with this first line we have The Northern Herald, "A POLITICAL AND CULTURAL BLOG NEWSPAPER COVERING THE NORTH EAST OF ENGLAND." Their post is, astonishingly, about the
“Common Land, Town and Village Green Committee which will meet to discuss Mr Ahmed Khan’s application to have certain areas of land classified as such to protect them from future developments."

God save Donald Duck, Vaudeville and Variety

Variety probably refers to the genre of entertainment that is "an entertainment made up of a variety of acts, especially musical performances and comedy skits, and normally introduced by a compère or host," rather than the magazine.

A subset of Variety was Vaudeville:
Vaudeville was a genre of variety entertainment prevalent in the United States and Canada from the early 1880s until the early 1930s. Developing from many sources, including the concert saloon, minstrelsy, freak shows, dime museums, and literary burlesque, vaudeville became one of the most popular types of entertainment in North America. Each evening's bill of performance was made up of a series of separate, unrelated acts. Types of acts included (among others) musicians (both classical and popular), dancers, comedians, trained animals, magicians, female and male impersonators, acrobats, one-act plays or scenes from plays, athletes, lecturing celebrities, minstrels, and short films.Donald Duck is a cartoon du…

We are the Desperate Dan Appreciation Society

Desperate Dan is a wild west character in the British comic The Dandy. He first appeared in the comic in its first issue, dated 4 December 1937. He is apparently the world's strongest man, able to lift a cow with one hand. Even his beard is so tough he has to shave with a blowtorch.

I can't find a blog post with the title "We are the Desperate Dan Appreciation Society," but I was able to find one with the title "Desperate Dan." It's a cooking blog:
Desperate Dan was a character in The Dandy, a long running children’s comic, who loved to eat ‘Cow Pies’. Cow Pies are really just steak pies but the name certainly suited the Desperate Dan character.Um, no.

God save strawberry jam and all the different varieties

There seems to be a large variety of strawberry jam. Some involve lemon and/or rhubarb. God save them all.

Bnpqoe uses this lyric as title of this post about having a flareup of Crohn's disease.

Preserving the old ways from being abused

The old way of singing the song would be the original version, by the Kinks:

Don't abuse it.

A blog post with this title comes to us from The (Not Really That) Exciting World of Mike. Mike wants to wish us all a Happy Nicholas Day. Happy Nicholas Day, Mike!

Protecting the new ways for me and for you

The new way is an explanation as to one of the reasons that VGPS is being used as the theme to a show called Jam and Jerusalem (or Clatterford, as it seems to be called in the US.) I've completely missed this program and from the description have no idea what to make of it.

Here's the opening credits:

The music is by Kate Rusby.

From the world of blogs, Andrew Wyld uses this and the previous for his post about his desire to defend Englishness.

God save Donald Duck.

What more can we do?

I figured that this would be the most difficult line to due, thanks to the inherent vagueness. A Google search for this exact phrase in the title currently brings eleven recent posts with topics as wide as "Gas War" and "Skin Care."

That's far fewer than I was imagining.

We are the Draught Beer Preservation Society

Three years after VGPS was released,
CAMRA [Campaign for Real Ale] was founded in the most Westerly pub in Europe - Kruger's Bar in Dunquin, Co Kerry, when four young men from the north west of England, Michael Hardman, Graham Lees, Bill Mellor and Jim Makin were on holiday. Fed up the increasing bad quality of beer in Britain that was too fizzy, no character and no taste they decided to form a Campaign for the Revitalisation of Ale.The blog post for this line is troublesome as it's on Live Journal and is log-in required to read it. I don't have a Live Journal login. Here's the link anyway. Good luck with it.

God save Mrs. Mopp and Good Old Mother Riley

The Wikipedia entry on Mrs Mopp:
Mrs Mopp was an early arcade game made for the ZX Spectrum home computer, released in 1984 by budget software house Atlantis.The aim is to play a housewife, trying to keep her kitchen tidy against the best mess-making efforts of her family. As time passes, dirt, cups, glasses and clothes accumulate on the floor, blocking her progress around the kitchen. Mrs Mopp must pick up one of the appropriately coloured tools around the room (basket, tray or dustpan and brush) and use it to collect the mess. When Mrs Mopp flashes, the tool must be emptied into the appropriate part of the kitchen (washing machine, sink, or bin).When Mrs Mopp gets tired, she can revive herself by having a swig of sherry, but care must be taken not to drink too much, or Mrs Mopp will become first tipsy (reversed controls), then drunk (random movement).While that is interestingly retro, but I don't think it's what we're looking for.

From what I can tell, there was a characte…

We are the Custard Pie Appreciation Consortium

From Wikipedia: "Pieing is the act of throwing a pie at someone." Furthermore, "a variation of pieing, when the target is hit with a cake instead of a pie, is called 'caking'." I'm not sure where to go from there.

There is a MySpace group called The Custard Pie Appreciation Consortium. It has one member, an individual that goes by the name of "Full English Breakfast."

On the blog front, Over at SwissToni's Place, SwissToni is letting Pynchon guestblog a list of songs of the week. Amongst them: The Kate Rusby version of VGPS.

God save the George Cross and all those who were awarded them

The George Cross (GC) is the highest civil decoration of the Commonwealth of Nations. The GC is the civilian counterpart of the Victoria Cross and the highest gallantry award for civilians as well as for military personnel in actions which are not in the face of the enemy or for which purely military honours would not normally be granted.Wikipedia has a list of all those who were awarded them.

For the blog search, I found evidence of a Kinks-related blog where the blogger in question seems to have done the same sort of thing that I am doing now, in annotating the lyrics and so forth. But it looks like the blog was taken down, and the blogger has moved on.

We are the Sherlock Holmes English Speaking Vernacular

I think Davies avoided having a line about a Sherlock Holmes Society because there actually is one. Go join up.

You can learn about different varieties of the English Speaking Vernacular at the British Library's Sounds Familiar online exhibit.

Julie from Lovely Universe is back from Wichita, her photos from New York have been posted, she has a great new job, and is thinking about getting herself a road bike. There are a number of blog posts with this line as a title; I picked this one because it has nothing to do with either Sherlock Holmes or English Speech.

Help save Fu Manchu, Moriarty and Dracula

This is the lyric... Of EVIL!

I'm sure that there is some goofy link between Fu Manchu, Moriarty and Dracula, like some actor who has played all three, or some weird pastiche with all three of them, but I can't think of it. Sorry.

[Update - it looks like they all pop up in Kim Newman's Anno Dracula books.]

"The Playlist" is all about music and film and the post titled "Shaun of the Dead Crew Help Save Fu Manchu, Moriarty and Dracula" looks at the film Hot Fuzz and the use of VGPS in it.

We are the Office Block Persecution Affinity

We are the Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment (formerly The Prince of Wales's Institute of Architecture). I suppose you may have been wondering when he was going to turn up.

In the blogs, Geek Sheik skipped tennis practice and is upset with all the McMansions going up.

God save little shops, china cups and virginity

When I saw that this lyric was used as a post title in Jonathan Calder's Liberal England blog ("The No. 1 Liberal Democrat blog - Iain Dale's Guide to Political Blogging in the UK 2007-8 ") I was delighted, as it meant that I would have some interesting backhandedly ironic political meaning.

The post is actually about the seemingly successful conclusion to the campaign to preserve the collection of Kink's memorabilia in the Clissold Arms. It turns out that the Clissold Arms is across the street from the Davies brothers' childhood home and was the first place they played in public. So now it's on my list of places to try and have a look at someday.

We are the Skyscraper Condemnation Affiliate

I've always thought this was a clever line, because it could be read in two ways:
They express strong disapproval of skyscrapers.They judge or declare skyscrapers to be unfit for use
Over at State 29 ("Keeping Track Of All Those Iowa Scandals While Remaining Insightfully Vulgar"), we find comments about a home in a Des Moines historical district that had its vinyl siding grandfathered in. The siding was damaged in a storm, so now the owner has to redo the siding in wood.

I'm not feeling too outraged by this, seeing as my house is clad in asbestos shingles. The hassle that we will have to go through when our siding eventually fails is going to be horrific.

God save tudor houses, antique tables and billiards

Architecture of the Tudor period (1485–1603) is characterized by:
Decorative half-timberingSteeply pitched roofProminent cross gablesTall, narrow windowsSmall window panesLarge chimneys, often topped with decorative chimney potsAn example of an extant "Tudor House" is Owlpen Manor, which looks like quite a swank place to have a wedding.

The game of table billiards was adapted from lawn games sometime in or about the Tudor period. (I can't find reference to an exact moment that someone "invented" the idea of rolling balls on a table for fun, but Wikipedia claims that the body of Mary, Queen of Scots was wrapped in a billiard table cover.)

I find no evidence, but I'd wager that Owlpen Manor has an antique billiard table somewhere on its premises.

In blogging news, Swik411 woke up late and had to rush to an orthodontist appointment.

God save the Village Green.

The closest thing to a "Village Green Preservation Society" is the Open Spaces Society, which has this to say:
Town and village greens are the essence of rural England and Wales, where cricket is played in the lengthening shadows of a summer evening, and villagers dance round the maypole.
In fact they are much more than that, and very varied.
A green is any land on which a significant number of the inhabitants of any locality, or any neighbourhood within a locality, have indulged in lawful sports and pastimes, for 20 years, as of right.
To wrap this all up much more cleanly than I was expecting, Suggested Donation ("A blog about Museums, Archives, and Libraries: and the poor suffering lot who work in them.") points us to The Lost Format Preservation Society, which
catalogues the rapid obsolescence of information technology, although we wonder if this sentimental geek’s delight is any more than the conservative myth of a “simpler time.” But we miss our 5″ floppies, too…

Face the Nation will help increase your vocabulary.

From 3/9/08:
Back in 1952 when Harry Truman called Republicans "a bunch of snolly-gusters," it set off such a shock wave that my late colleague Eric Sevareid thought it necessary to counsel calmness. After all, he said, the man's remark wasn't nearly as bad as when President McKinley's opponent said he had "the backbone of a chocolate eclair."Snolly-guster?

Oh, internet! Can you tell me what a snolly-guster is?
SNOLLYGOSTERA shrewd, unprincipled person, especially a politician.
This is another of that set of extroverted and fanciful words that originated in the fast-expanding United States of the nineteenth century (I see a snollygoster as a outsized individual with a carpetbag, flowered waistcoat, expansive demeanour and a large cigar). These days it’s hardly heard. Its last burst of public notice came when President Truman used it in 1952, and defined it, either in ignorance or impishness, as “a man born out of wedlock”. Many people put him right, some…

Lawrence Miles on Nigel Kneale

So as in Quatermass and the Pit, anyone who isn't a mouthpiece for the writer is an ignorant savage with an urge towards self-destruction. Because, far from being a forward-thinking visionary, Kneale's work suggests the SF equivalent of a Daily Mail columnist: an arch-conservative who considers anything new, alien or peculiar-looking to be untrustworthy and ultimately catastrophic. Why, then, is he considered such a revolutionary?

As good a time as any to bring this up.

Bedazzled has put up a video of "1920's 'megaphone crooner' Rudy Vallee appearing on 1960's Teen Rock & Roll Show 'Shebang.'"

As he sings, footage of Vallee from the film The Palm Beach Story (US,UK) is shown in the background.

If you were to be able to hear the dialogue from the scene, you would hear Vallee say this:
That's one of the tragedies of this life, that the men who are most in need of a beating up are always enormous.Folks who have read this blog closely will recognise that as the text from the footer.

The reason why I have it in the footer? I was setting the blog up and needed to put something in the footer. That movie was on while I was trying to come up with something.

Mom! Sally's calling me a Lobsterback!

This week sees the 238th anniversary of the Boston Massacre. On the calendar for tomorrow:
Saturday, March 8, 2008

11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Kids Reenact the Massacre

Young visitors will be the stars in a reenactment of the Boston Massacre led by rangers from the Adams National Historical Park. Free; on the mall outside of the Old State House.The reenactment for adults has been cancelled for rain (The grownups get the gunpowder, the kids will just wave sticks and go "Bang" or something).

I had too much to dream last night

An actual dream I had a couple of days ago:

It is a sort of mildly post-apocalyptic future. (In that everyone is behaving post-apocalypticishly, but nobody is really dying or anything like that). It is sort of like Fahrenheit 451, except instead of memorizing a book, everyone is required to memorize a food item. So say one guy is "chocolate cupcake guy" and he has to wander the Earth remembering chocolate cupcakes, and talking about chocolate cupcakes. You also have to make a bunch of the thing that you are required to memorize and give it out to people. So when the woman who is memorizing tuna melt sandwiches is walking down the street, she has to have a big bag of tuna melts to hand out to anyone who wants them.

The food that I was required to memorize was "Cherry Cheese Pistachio Yogurt Drink."

I would wander the Earth having conversations that went like this:
Stranger: Hello there! I'm the one who has memorized Spanish Omelets. Would you like one?

Me: Wh…

Just a thought

Perhaps I should write a memoir about the fallout that I endured after it was discovered that the previous memoir that I wrote was fabricated.

Because I haven't actually previously published a memoir that turned out to have been fabricated, it will then turn out that my new memoir was!

This will lead to actual fallout, which would be hilarious, as the articles about what I had done would be so convoluted.

I could then keep a journal about what happens and publish it.

I take a moment to clarify something for the benefit of the person who has been valiantly googling this blog for the past four days

1939 was not in the Victorian Era. Queen Victoria died in 1901.

The Internet might just solve another mystery

I'm Learning to Share is hoping to find out what happened to Peter Sellers' gigantic mechanical elephant.

Can you help?