Oh Quornimal! Oh Quornimal!

The only animal made exclusively of mycoprotein!

Recently Helen mentioned on her blog a previously unknown form of fauna – the quornimal.

The quornimal is apparently…

“…a sort of dog-sized version of Highland Cattle but with the horn of a unicorn…”

Now this is all well and good, but it does raise at least one extremely important question. Does the quornimal have the horns of a highland cow, plus a unicorn’s horn? Or does it have the unicorn’s horn exclusively?

Perhaps there are even two species of quornimal – the mono-horned quornimal and the triple-horned quornimal. And if there are, do they taste different?

And can you find quornimal in Warrnambool?

Western Australian Pronunciation

Prescriptivism R Us!

The first syllable of Albany rhymes with pal, Sal or Mal. Not Paul, ball or Saul.

Castle rhymes with parcel not hassle (ok, you can probably debate that one, but the way some people – mostly Eastern-Staters – pronounce it makes me grind my teeth ;))

The first syllable of Derby rhymes with her or sir, not car or bar. This doesn’t just apply to the town, it extends to sporting events (such as the Western Derby) and probably even to the hats – if anyone had any reason to discuss them.

Exmouth is pronounced Ex-mouth not Exmuth as it would be in England.

Fremantle can be pronounced as either FREE-man-tle or fre-MAN-tle but is often just FREE-oh.

Joondalup is JOON-da-lup not joon-DAR-lup.

Mandurah is MAN-ju-ra not man-JUR-ra.

(Yes, the pronunciations would be much more precise if I used the IPA, but this post is a rough guide aimed at the general public who wouldn’t recognise the IPA if it danced around in front of them wearing a shirt reading “Hi! I’m the IPA!”. So there! :))

(Also: Woooo!!! Post 600!!! :))

Charles Walker and the H. H. Holmes Combo

Serial killers in short supply. Ugly musicians not so much…

So! It is to be war between us! If these demands are not met, a disaster beyond your imagination shall…

Oh, sorry, I seem to have been channelling the Phantom of the Opera there.

It occurred to me the other day that they haven’t played Musician or Serial Killer on Spicks and Specks for a while. For the uninitiated this is where they display a grainy, black and white mugshot and challenge the players to determine (as you’d expect from the name) if they’re a musician or a serial killer.

My initial thought was that they might have run out of scary/creepy looking musicians.

A few seconds later I realised that this was stupid, and they’d have been much more likely to have run out of serial killers šŸ˜‰

(For the record this is my 599th post…)

Foolish Ideas: The Return

Getting other people to do all the hard work…

I’ve been boning up lately (oh stop laughing, that’s a perfectly legitimate phrase!) on the world of Hellboy, having used some tax return money and birthday book vouchers to buy Darkness Calls, Abe Sapien: The Drowning, BPRD: Killing Ground, The Hellboy Companion and the special edition of The Golden Army. As a result the nebulous mental space I use to store details of whatever fictional world I’m currently mainlining is stuffed to the gills with the big red guy and his colleagues.

This explains why when I read that an open source version of that old classic Wolfenstein 3D has been ported to the iPhone my immediate thought was “Hey! A Wolfenstein mod would make a pretty good Hellboy game!”

(Here comes the madness…)

You see, the history of Hellboy computer games has been plagued with bug ridden piles of garbage and adequate though hardly inspired beat-em-ups. So how better to fix the problem than to make some modifications to one of the most consistently popular and influential games of all time?

I mean think about it. Wolfenstein is all about running around a mysterious castle, shooting Nazis and stopping their fiendish attempts to raise a robotic zombie army. Could you come up with a more archetypal Hellboy adventure? All you need to do is swap out some of the graphics and bingo!

As for the plot? Well the BPRD sends Hellboy in to investigate reports of strange activity in the ruins of Castle Wolfenstein – rumoured to have been the site of experiments associated with Project Ragna-Rok back in World War II. He discovers an abandoned laboratory full strange equipment and inadvertently activates a primitive time travel device which throws him back to 1943. He has to fight his way through the castle back to the laboratory and get back to the present day.

Replace the faces in the health meter, add the Right Hand of Doom as a weapon, make the zombies look like the ones in the basement of Hunte Castle, swap out the bosses with Rasputin, Von Klempt and Kroenen and there you go! Hours of Nazi-smashing fun!

(You’d leave robo-Hitler in there untouched, obviously)

If I had the time I’d take a shot at it myself. Of course I don’t have the time, so I’m releasing the idea into the wild in the hopes someone out there is similarly enthused. Which they probably won’t be. But hey, at least I’m making an effort šŸ˜€

Hellboy in Wolfenstein? (Click to Enlarge)

Fading

Spawn of the Dark Lord

I did carry on a bit about Lady Sovereign on Monday didn’t I? Well here’s the sequel, as the whole So Human palarva reminded me of another controversial song…

If you ears can stand it, take a listen to this…

One Word – Kelly Osbourne

Doesn’t it sound a bit… familiar?

(Those of you who aren’t officianados of the 1980s may want to check this.)

Happily all ended well in this case. Kelly Osbourne’s song writers got their arses sued off and profits from One Word are now shared with the original writers.

Of course this doesn’t have a lot to do with So Human as Close to Me was used with permission. It just reminded me, that’s all.

The Only Good Bikie…

You know what I’m saying.

Well it looks like the Bikies are at it again. Well hooray.

It’s tempting to think “good, maybe they’ll all wipe each other out” but the problem is that ordinary people inevitably get caught in the crossfire.

What we really need is to round them all up, dump them somewhere desolate and uninhabited (the top of Mount Everest say) and let them sort it all out there once and for all.

The Human Cure

I also like mashups!

I’m going to stick my neck out and plant my feet (now there’s an image) firmly in the pro-So Human camp. As far as I’m concerned it’s an enjoyable and fairly creative re-working of Close to Me, and detracts nothing from the original track.

So there!

(Yes, after a very rough week I’m back baby!)

Later…

OK, after trawling around the web a bit it’s become apparent to me that there’s not a decent copy of the lyrics anywhere (or at least not anywhere accessible from the front page of Google). The only lyrics available appear to have been transcribed by someone unfamiliar with an English accent, and who frankly didn’t care very much anyway (how else to explain the fact that large chunks are gibberish and even the bits copied from the Cure are wrong?). This severely faulty version has then been copied verbatim by every lazy bastard out there who’d rather just cut, paste and submit rather than reading through what it is they’re pasting in.

Well no more! I’ve just spent half an hour transcribing the song and while my version has a few holes (indicated with italics) it’s a hell of a lot more accurate. Enjoy!

So Human – Lady Sovereign

Me you, yeah yeah, everyone we’ve had one of them days, but listen me you cannot relate,
I’m a star, I’m an individual, uneducatedĀ¹ example of intelligence, I’m considered t’be cool,
Hot bodies, offended people, the mood offstage (bitten down a steeple??Ā²),
Anyways, things change, always at the hotel, always, I’ll be gone again in four days,

I’ve been waiting hours for this,
I’ve made myself so sick,
I wish I’d stayed, asleep today, yeah,
I’m so human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),
I’m still human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),

Yeah… Yeah… Yeah…

Yeah, you me everyone, I got a little temper but I’m a funny one,
(da-da da-da??) the beat went on and I really fucking had enough,
You shoulda seen me runnin’ out the studio like Forest Gump,
(Drop shop??Ā³) shut up, taxi, get away,
Trapped in the U.S. and my accent is my giveaway,
I need a bag of green to makeĀ it go away,
And this is another day of my life, and so I say,

I’ve been waiting hours for this,
I’ve made myself so sick,
I wish I’d stayed, asleep today, yeah,
I’m so human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),
I’m still human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),

Yea-ah yeay…
Yea-ah yeay…
Yea-ah yeay…

Doesn’t it feel much better, aha? When you’ve had a better day than yesterday?
Doesn’t it feel much better, aha? When you’ve had a better day than yesterday?
Doesn’t it feel much better, aha? When you’ve had a better day than yesterday?
Doesn’t it feel much better, aha? When you’ve had a better day than yesterday?
Yesterday, Yesterday, Yesterday, Yesterday,
(Yesterday, Yesterday, Yesterday, Yesterday)

I’m so human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),
I’m still human (yeah yeah),
It’s OK (yeah yeah),
For me to,
Feel this way (yeah yeah),

Notes:
1: Could be “an educated” but I think “uneducated” makes more sense in context.
2: “Ridden down a steeple”? I really have no idea.
3: I honestly don’t have the foggiest.

You Load Sixteen Tons…

woooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrkkkkkkkk

Just worked a 10 hour day, and I’ve got another one lined up tomorrow. Just to make the point that I’m not abandoning the “try and write something every day” thing.

In the meantime, try this… (not by me by the way – just so that’s clear)


FRIEND OR FOE?
RISE OF THE MAC-
HINE OR BEGGINING
OF THE ANIMAL
FARM

Reminisces

Don’t talk to me about the Kings of Leon!

The Kings of Leon. The Kings of Leon were a pack of bastards. Obsessed with reconquering Iberia from the Moors. “Hey” I’d say to them “The Moors aren’t that bad. They’re people just like you”. “But they’re evil!” they’d say “The Pope says so!” and how can you really argue against the Pope?

The Kings of Aragon were just as bad, with the added complication of an appalling amount of inbreeding. Knock-kneed, hump-backed dwarves the lot of them. And the lisps! A five minute conversation with one of them and you’d need a shower and change of clothes. And believe me, showering facilities in 12th century Zaragoza weren’t exactly up to scratch.

The food was great though – Aragon had the best cooks in the whole of Iberia. A meal at the royal court was almost worth all the spit. Some people will tell you the palace of Cordova was the place for fine cuisine, but the Umayyads had nothing on the cooks of Aragon. The things they could do with a duck, some cloves and some oranges would make you weep.

Charlemagne, he was a decent sort. Great company – the stories he could tell! I remember one time he had the whole Synod of Frankfurt in hysterics with a story about a gluttonous donkey. His one big regret was never learning to write properly. “Charlie” I’d say “You’ve got scribes to handle that for you”, but he was always embarrassed about it. “Even Abul can write better than I!” he’d exclaim and throw his quill (or when drunk – as he often was – his flagon) across the room, and his wife would have to talk him down and remind him that Abul was an elephant and hence couldn’t write at all. But apart from that he was a great bloke.

Can’t say the same about Pippin, but that’s another story.

Apparently he was on the Enclave payroll all along…

Change the world a little bit.

Anyone who visits this blog regularly (not that I necessarily believe such a curious beast to exist) will have noticed a lot of activity lately. This is because I am “Making an Effort”. I’m trying my best to write something every night just to keep my hand in, and to try and catch up to Helen who recently hit 600 posts despite her blog being younger than mine. Such a discrepancy cannot be allowed to stand! *grin*

That being said, I am extremely tired after a hard week’s work trying to interpret the heavily accented mumblings of a man who looks uncannily like the Vault Overseer from the original Fallout (I keep expecting him to ask me to find a water chip), and have very little stomach for writing. So this entry will be short, if not necessarily sweet.

I will say before going however that if you have any money spare (a rare occurrence in this time of economic crisis I know) or you just feel like being charitable, there are a lot worse causes to send your money to than that of Hollis Hawthorne. Rather than try and compose an explanation in my own words I shall liberally quote from the post on Whitechapel (by one Theremina) that alerted me and many others to her plight…

[Hollis Hawthorne] is a performer, cyclist, and activist who lives in SF. I only kinda sorta barely know her through mutual friends, but by all accounts, she’s just the most radiant, beautiful person. She moves in many of the same circles I do, and has donated her time to many of the same nonprofit events.

Late last month, Hollis was traveling by motor scooter in Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu, India when something terrible happened. Some sort of freak hit-and-run accident that wasn’t her fault left her bleeding out on the side of the road with her boyfriend Harrison frantically performing CPR for 20 minutes before a van of German tourists picked them up and drove them to a hospital. According to her best pal Eliza, Hollis was wearing her helmet and driving very slowly at the time of the accident. Now she’s in a coma in a rural hospital with a serious brain stem injury.

According to Harrison, who has been with her from the moment it happened, “there are huge rats scurrying around on the [hospital] floor. I am sleeping on the ant-covered floor outside her room as I am not allowed in and the water they have used for many procedures is not even purified.” When Hollis’s mom flew in from Tennessee a couple of days ago with emergency support from the US consulate to see her own daughter, the orderlies were dismissive and curt. “They are not observing her brain pressure and have done nothing to alleviate the swelling in her brain. These are things that can make or break her early on in her recovery and healing process.”

Through a series of fortuitous connections, her case has been reviewed and accepted by Stanford Medical; one of the best hospitals in the world … All we need to do is get her there. The friends and family of Hollis are reaching out to everyone they can to raise funds to get her on an I.C.U. plane (aka air ambulance) to fly her back to California.

Before that can happen, Friends of Hollis must raise $150,000 dollars. They’ve already raised approximately $40,000, and more is pouring in all the time, mostly in small denominations. Can you spare a dollar, or five, or ten? It adds up more quickly than you’d think!

Yes, I know, life is risk, and life is uncertain. Life is also precious. If, in some small way, we can help someone in our community to come back from the brink, we really should. Click here to help, and please spread the word, if you can. This is what the internet is for.

Now yes, that all sounds like some kind of more creative than normal Nigerian mail scam, but it’s all on the level and – while her situation has improved with movement to a much better hospital and she’s starting to show signs of recovery – money to get her home is still desperately needed. So, if you feel like doing something good for the world and helping out a stranger – not to mention being part of a growing group of helpers and well-wishers scattered all around the world, click on the link above. If not, whatever.

That’s my good deed for the week. Denys sleep now.