Thursday, May 31

balance story HNT

People often ask me how I manage to be so calm and good-natured. The secret is to observe how things naturally balance out, no matter what you do.

My Northern Hemisphere friend hotboy is a self-confessed fat basturn. To sweat off the excess flab caused by drinking beer, he uses a patented device called the Beer Monster Reduction Vehicle.

Here in the Southern Hemisphere, I'm a skinny basturn, so I used the beer diet to try and put on some pounds. Naturally, it didn't work, and I even lost weight - I had forgotten that North is the opposite of South, and everything has to balance up. I may ask hotboy to send me one of his Beer Monster Reduction Vehicles. On crossing the Equator, it would convert into a Beer Monster Inflation Vehicle. I could use it to pack on some weight Down Under.

This photo was taken recently, after six months on the beer diet.


Tuesday, May 29

getting physical with britney

I've had no blogtime except for commenting. I had to spend the day with some new people at the weekend. When I got to their house, as you'd expect if you're a freelance Taoist, there was good news and bad. Yes, their heads weren't flat, but they were ex-paratroopers. Okay, they were a refreshing change from the deifheids and whingeing Australians I usually have to socialise with, but their reminiscences of shooting dogs and cats verged on the criminal.

Because there was a chance that I would need to drive home, I had to do the whole thing sober.

Scientists are different from other people. To you and me, Britney looks like this:

In the course of my research, I stumbled across Britney's Guide to Semiconductor Physics. There, I discovered that a scientist sees Britney like this:

I actually like the second version better, but I can't explain the physics, you'll need to visit the site yourself.

I can recommend the page on Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers and the Britney's meeting with Einstein. If science had been like this when I was a student, I might never have gone off the rails.

Thursday, May 24

headless in hawaii (HNT)

Long long ago, after I split up with Angie and did the solo world wide walkabout, I found myself in Hawaii for a couple of weeks. I moved into a third floor apartment with a mixed bag of backpackers and fishermen. My room-mate was an old guy called Popeye, because that's who he looked like.

Anyway, the apartment building, built out of wood and standing on stilts, was riddled with termites. If you got up in the night, everyone in the building knew about it because the whole structure would wobble for ages. After a week, the authorities closed the building down, and everyone had to look for new accommodation.

My money was running out, and I worked out that a rented car would cost less than a motel, so I signed up for this small car and slept in the back. I got quite good at finding a suburban street where nobody would complain and where I was unlikely to be mugged. As you can imagine, I hardly slept.

After a few nights, the sleep deprivation was getting to me, and I couldn't even set up this self-timer shot without cutting off my head.

As I was taking the photo, two lovely but massive young Hawaiian women sauntered past. Normal people in Hawaii are built like a brick shithouse. One of the lassies called out to me: "hey, nice legs!" That cheered me up, until I realised she was being sarcastic.


Tuesday, May 22

progress report

Recognition at last! A delightful young lady called Tara Tainton visited my purple underpants and recorded her appreciation. Quoting from her comment: "Wow! Should I be aroused or frightened??"

Tara has dozens of websites catering to various broadminded web users. This could be the start of something big. At last my genius is gaining recognition, in a very public way! Such bad timing, though: I'll soon be coming off the bliss pills, and going back to being a shy, introverted, home-brew type.

The wheat beer challenge, pitting my latest Number 15 Bohemian Brew against hotboy's Munton Wheat Beer, looks like slipping out of my grasp. My brew refused to start fermenting, probably because the yeast was out of date. Indeed, when I looked for the "sell-by" date on the can, I realised it had been rubbed off before I bought it. Ra swindling basturns! The convict culture dies hard.

I had to use bakers' yeast to start the brew in a hurry, or the whole bucket would have gone off. As it turns out, the taste is drinkable, but it's nothing like real wheat beer.

I can only hope that hotboy has gone on another bender and made an even bigger mess of his brew.

Thanks to Ray Ray for defining a new phrase :

"Google Moment" - definition: that interminable stretch of time you sit staring at a blank google homepage, unable to remember what it was you were just about to google.

Thursday, May 17

open head therapy 2

I've been getting some more help from Doctor Robert.

The transcript below explains everything. It's probably only interesting if you're me, but it's all true.

Doctor Robert: Today I want to find out more about what sort of person you are. Last week you said your life's going nowhere.  Have you ever tried meditation? It could help you focus on what you really want to do.

Patient: Well, I once tried using visualisation - that's a bit like meditating, isn't it?

DR: And did you get results?

Patient: Oh yes. It was back in the days when I used to jog. I discovered that you can boost your speed during a run, by visualising certain, er, invigorating scenes. I sometimes imagined myself jogging past a gorgeous blonde young mother.

DR: I think I know what you're going to say.

Patient: Yes, she would be screaming because her wee child was in the jaws of a bull terrier, being eaten alive. Using my axe or machete which I just happened to have with me while jogging, I would paralyse the dog with one almighty chop through its spine.

At this point in the fantasy, the adrenaline effect on my running speed was like hitting a turbo button. Amazing! Sometimes I would imagine the young mother's gratitude as well, but the main buzz was my attack on the dog.

DR: Well at least it shows you have a natural aptitude for public service. Have you considered a change of career, maybe some kind of avenging dog catcher?

Patient: I'd rather be a leaf blower patrolman.

DR: A what?

Patient: You know those annoying people who use leaf-blowers to move dead leaves from their garden into someone else's? And then the wind blows them all back again! It would be my job to deal with them. If they're doing it in their own garden or in the street, well they're fair game. I'd have a licence to kill them on the spot. Okay, occasionally you might find some poor employee doing leaf-blowing as a job - I'd have to spare them if could take me to the manager who told them to do it. I'd shoot the manager.

DR: I was thinking of something less violent.

Patient: When I was a kid I always wanted to be a plain-clothes cop, maybe one of the guys who bumps off muggers - just strolling around dodgy areas waiting for someone to make my day. I could dress as a wee old lady, wait for the tug on my handbag, pull out a magnum and - bang!

DR: Er, what about something more gentle? And legal. You're obviously interested in law enforcement - what about being a traffic cop?

Patient: Yes! I'd stand at a busy crossroads, and wait for drivers racing through on red. I'd throw buckets of raw offal on their windscreens as they cross the junction. Make them think they'd hit a pedestrian.

DR: But think of the mess!

Patient: You're right. I'd just shoot them.

DR: I see, there seems to be a bit of a theme here. Do you get these murderous feelings very often?

Patient: No, since I've been taking the bliss pills, I hardly get them at all.

DR: Well please don't stop taking the pills, that's all that's standing between you and a massacre.


If you think you too could benefit from spending some time with Doctor Robert, he's taking bookings now in the comments section.

Sunday, May 13

ma's day

deifheids n. - people who are unable to listen to anyone else, because they're too busy talking about themselves.

It's Mother's Day here today, and we have to go to the deifheids' place for a roast lunch. I'll wear earplugs, to even up the listening score.

I've agreed to go away for the weekend later in the year with the deifheids. At least I'll be able to talk to the trees. This is a photo of the wilderness shack we'll be renting:

The nearest house is about 10 miles away along a dirt road. Not much help if you get snake or spider bite. Thank goodness we'll have the dogs, to take a bite and lay down their lives if necessary.

Thursday, May 10

HNT open head therapy

After last week's picture I was advised to get some help.

The transcript below explains everything. It's probably only interesting if you're me, but it's all true.

Doctor Robert: Just relax, and tell me what you have to report today.

Patient: Nothing much.

Doctor Robert: Ah, but you're not trying. Just cast your mind back over this week. Does anything come into your mind?

Patient: Well, I had a smoothie yesterday.

Doctor Robert: A smoothie?

Patient: Yes, a sort of deluxe milk shake.

Doctor Robert: And ... ?

Patient: It was wonderful! I've never had one before, but now I can see why people drink them. It's like an orgasm.

Doctor Robert: Just leave the psychoanalysis to me. Tell me exactly what happened.

Patient: Well, I met Cap'n Kev for a coffee in the village, and ...

Doctor Robert: Cap'n Kev, he's the one who tried to drown you at sea, isn't he?

Patient: Yes, but that was years ago, it's all water under the bridge now.

Doctor Robert: You were saying, you had coffee ...

Patient: Well actually, he ordered a mango smoothie instead, so I decided to try one too. I thought it was safer to go for strawberry, seeing it was my first time, and ..

Doctor Robert: You said it was like an orgasm?

Patient: It was the most sustained pleasure you can imagine. It comes in a tall glass, with a ridiculous narrow straw.

Doctor Robert: "Ridiculous" - are you over-dramatising again?

Patient: Well, the drink is thick and frothy, so you have to make a big effort, you suck your cheeks in hard, but still you only get a trickle in your mouth. I was going to throw the straw away, but then I realised there's a good reason for it. It slows you way down, so the drink lasts much longer.

Doctor Robert: How long?

Patient: Well the bliss lasted about 20 minutes.

Doctor Robert: Some people have to meditate to get that. Then what happened?

Patient: Well, that's the funny thing.

Doctor Robert: What is?

Patient: As I was slurping the last froth from the bottom of the glass, I suddenly felt bereft.

Doctor Robert: Bereft?

Patient: Yes, a wave of grief washed over me, I didn't want this drink to end, ever. I just wanted the waitress to keep bringing more and more.

Doctor Robert: So did you order another one?

Patient: At $6 a pop, are you kidding?

Doctor Robert: Well, before next week, I'd like you to go back to the cafe. Order another one, maybe mango this time, and write down any thoughts that you have.

Patient: So do you think it's significant?

Doctor Robert: Oh yes, the sucking on the straw symbolises attachment to your mother's nipple.

Patient: But I was a bottle-fed baby.

Doctor Robert: Exactly! Don't you see? The smoothie you never tried until yesterday - that's the mother's milk you never tasted when you were a baby. And your grief when the drink was finished - that was you as a baby, longing for the real thing. What you experienced today was a spontaneous regression. This is most encouraging!

Patient: Brilliant! Now, can you tell me what you think about the nightmare I had last night? I fell asleep reading this Ian McEwan book and then ...

Doctor Robert: Sorry, time's up. We'll talk about that next week.

Patient: Okay. I'll be back. This virtual analysis really works. Every day I'm getting a little more normal.


If you think you too could benefit from spending some time with Doctor Robert, he's taking bookings now in the comments section.

Saturday, May 5

new scotland

Over the centuries, the Scottish nation has contributed to the world's technical and engineering progress, inventing Penicillin and TV, etc. But, to adapt a phrase from Donald Rumsfeld, that was old Scotland.

The result of the Scottish elections is now known. Or is it? According to the BBC, the polls have been hit by major problems, and up to 100,000 ballot papers have been spoilt.

Computer software failures, confusion about how to fill in ballot papers (you have to work out whether to write an 'X' or a '1') and problems with postal votes have all been blamed. Even the Scottish National Party, who seem to have won the election, are complaining about the mess-up.

Normally, to describe people who are disorganised, you say "they couldn't organise a booze-up in a brewery." But that's one thing you can never accuse the Scots of. Since the election, some people are saying the Scots could only organise a booze-up in a brewery, but that's Australians, not Scots.

Friday, May 4

visual dna

The imagini site says this is me:

Guess which blogger this is:

This post was made possible by Narcissistic Personality Disorder

Thursday, May 3

HNT clickypic - more room for expansion

Following the runaway success of the first "room for expansion" HNT, I received some comments about doing another underwear post. But I'm going ahead anyway.

If you missed the first post, I bought 14 pairs of undies recently, a size too large.

I used to think that Robert Plant wore a banana down his trousers, or else he was born with an outsize willie.

But now I know his secret - you just buy your jocks a size too big, and you automatically expand to take up the extra space. They say that nature abhors a vacuum.

Art Photo
(click for filled-out undies)

Should I go off the pills for a while?