But those mind-boggelingly great artists... well, they keep getting re-discovered and re-discovered over the decades and before you know it some Viking/Pirate/Folk (doesn't know how to tell them apart most of the time) fake dreads-sporting neo-paleo-neo-hippie girl is playing 'Smoke On the Water' to me with an expectant look in her eyes, as if she'd just unearthed a rare gem.More
Yes, I know. You are different. You are not your parents, and your parents were never cool anyway. But here's the thing; yes you will change. Maybe you'll be dead, addicted or in jail. Despite what Hollywood tells you; your youthful hijinks are not consequence free. I realized that the first time someone told me 'Oh by the way, you know so-and-so? Yeah, he's dead.' Kids die too. There's no karmic judge that spares the 'good ones' and you don't get off with a slap on the wrist because you are young, not from life. Certainly not from death.More
Why is it, in general, that people seem to think I have it in for them personally when I participate in a debate or simply post something on Facebook they disagree with? Why is it all so personal?
It's quite simple;
I've come to the conclusion that these people have been taught all through their childhood that they were entitled little brats. And they grew up to be entitled big brats. It's personal because if it weren't that would mean I didn't care about them personally. If I say something they feel is objectionable it's either aimed directly at them or it's ignoring their feelings.More
When I was living in Toronto, back in 2006 or so, everyone around me was online dating. All of my girlfriends were doing this -- and I was living alone at the time. It was the thing to do... Every cell in my body was against it, and I was getting tons of mixed messages from around me. A few being: age difference (I can date someone younger than me), religious or cultural difference, any other difference did not matter apparently -- and while you're at it, why not have a first date with someone new three times a week? You can be having dates with multiple people, even kiss them, but until you have the talk of exclusivity, all was game. I knew I could never do that. But my girlfriends did! So I decided to give it a shot. What could I lose? I would just be honest and write what I wanted on my profile and present who I was, and hope it would resonate somewhere with someone, right? Wrong. Instead, a lot of weird things happened... I met a lot of weird people, which made me come to the conclusion that online dating is mostly a waste of time, and success is there only because statistically and mathematically, it would have to occur (which it does).More
It’s the holiday season. I felt like a break from the usual seriousness, and I haven’t done a tutorial in a while. So, just for fun, and perhaps some edification, I present you a simple way to do cool looking street-art headers for your blog, site, or even print. More
There are many small things that annoy me daily. I'm sure it's the same for you. If not, well, consider yourself lucky. Unless, of course there are many big things that annoy you daily, in which case, sucks to be you. Here's a list. Why? Because lists are fun. Sorta. It's better than bottling shit up, or so I'm told. If it doesn't work it's back to the original plan, although where I'm going to get enough rat poison, I don't know. More
Nerds are never going to leave you for another woman, and the mistress he comes with is not human and cannot reciprocate her loyalty with fellatio, leaving only you as his option; even though he talks about her so much you sometimes question why it was incredibly disappointing to him when you told him he could not bring his laptop to bed. Seriously. While they may also watch a lot of pornography they are also smart enough to know the difference between porn sex and real life sex. While they drool over sci-fi hotties they also know they do not stand a chance with them. Rather, they would like to engage in conversation about the media's portrayal of women and how it hurts us. Anyway, nerds do not have affairs (with human women) primarily because: they've already been wounded by a cheater; they know that no else wants them sexually, thereby limiting their chances for infidelity greatly, and; while Kirk might, Picard definitely would not. More
If you are prepared to define 'all over the world' as 'the rich few countries' then 'all over the world' protesters have gathered at Wall Street and places they perceive as local equivalents to protest. They are protesting many things, there's no agenda, no list of demands. In general they are just angry at where the world is going and I couldn't agree more; I'm friggin' pissed. But I will not join them. Here's why. More
I don't know what I'm thinking when I plop myself into the driver side of a tiny Toyota Tercel, my fiancée sitting in the passenger side, and the stick in between us. A line drawn in the sand. A very symbolic boundary separating "those who know" and "those who do not know".
"How did I end up choosing this again?"
"You said you wanted to learn."
"Yes. I did, didn't I?" I don't touch anything in the car and sit with my hands in my lap, my legs together.
"Yes, you did. And it'll be great! I'll be your teacher." He's incredibly enthusiastic. A man who probably learned how to drive a car with a standard transmission by reading a manual about it in his mother's womb. He is brimming in what should be my self-confidence but having grown up as the eldest child with every move questioned it's hard to believe I can control machinery.More
On my first day as history major a professor told us "Please forget everything about history you were taught in school." The impression most people are left with is that history consists of first a load of guys in toga's doing a lot of thinking and philosophy, then a big meltdown and a big period of time in which nothing happened but burning of witches and heretics by people who thought the world was flat, and then a slow emergence of modern thought. And of course these days we are well away from the irrational flat-worlders. We have science! More
I'm a sucker for well-done parodies because while they mock the original creation, they also show a deep knowledge of it. And that very knowledge, which the reader can recognise and appreciate in this book, is what makes Pat the Zombie so great.More
The overarching message in this book is quite simple; fucking stop, the fuck, 'helping' fucking Africa with aid that is clearly only doing fucking harm, not good. You can see with your own eyes, so why the fuck keep doing it? The fuck?! (Paraphrased. The 'fucks' are mine.) More
You can't feed six billion people without it. I'm reading The End Of Food right now. The level of societal change we would have to undertake to revert 80% of the population to manual food production would (will) be impossible. The fact that we don't even see it coming is just absurd. More
The interdependencies of modern life make it inherently frail. We're so isolated from the necessities of life that virtually all of us never give them a second thought. Food is never a problem, neither is clean drinking water. These things becomes immediate, panicky concerns when Walmart and all the rest aren't delivering at the lowest possible price. We don't have a grasp on what the actual costs of life really are; we are increasingly unprepared for a breakdown. More
After writing 'Things My Father Should Have Told Me As a Child' I was ostracised from the dating community. Gangs of irate feminist protesters throw rocks through my windows, men the world over have taken out contracts on my life, hackers have invaded my computer and ordered bondage gear in my name. My Mac refuses to boot (but that may be due to a botched Linux install), Girls I dated all call to ask if I meant them (yes) and girls I never GOT to date called to ask if I meant them (yes, too). Models refuse to work for me and rumour has it that the W3C is changing all the standards so I'll be out of a job. More
You know the stories, songs, books and blog-posts that start with "My father took me aside one day and ..."? Well, the concept of 'fathers' was not a stable thing in my childhood. Mostly I had to make do with occasional, very occasional, letters and a phone call on my birthday. So I'm guessing that my fathers (biological, adoptive) didn't get much time for such asides. Besides, I was a pretty chatty kid, so they probably never got a word in edgewise. So, I learned all those 'man' things on my own. More
The train pulled into the station. He walked down the steps towards the bus that would take him home, where he wouldn't have to see things that made him nice again. Where people don't get raped, don't cry on your shoulder, don't sit in a wicker chair like a wounded puppy, looking at you as if you have any of the answers they seek. Only to go back to let it all happen again. More
For the second time this week I've read a "Letter to the Editor" where a female reader complained that a magazine in question had too much man in it. In the first case, a long-time reader of The New Yorker had a problem that the last two issues had too few women in it. She was so outraged that she sent the issue back demanding a refund. Elsewhere, another reader completely dismissed all of the articles in the previous issue of a club's newsletter because all but one were written by men. She summarised the entire thing as a "testosterone overload". I agree that, despite some improvements, gender inequality issues are still alive and well. I also agree that magazines need to present a balance of voices that reflect their audience. As a Social Worker, I also think that if we're all going to preach the importance of equality among gender (among other things), we're not helping the problem by discarding something just because it was written by a man. More
First and foremost, Basil Baxter (who Loves You) wishes to address some personal grievances. Basil Baxter (who Loves You) has noted with mounting displeasure that, despite claims to the contrary by your extensive PR department, you apparently do not, in fact, read all letters sent to you. More
LARP (Live Action Role Playing) is an often misunderstood hobby. People see pictures or movies online, often at semi-humorous websites that make a living ridiculing others or stealing material from actually funny sites, and it all seems as if we geeks just call each other up some day, get together in a park and start playing pretend. Or as if it's all about bashing each other while pretending to be knights. Sadly, LARPers themselves are sometimes lured in front of the camera's, and "to keep things simple for the folks at home" enticed to dumb it all down to just those two things, at best. More
There are many reasons why you can get to feel a bit lonely, or maybe just in need of some fresh new people to talk to. Our lives can get in a rut, we work hard these days, kids and obligations get in the way of social activities but most of all; the world gets bigger all the time. We meet many people every day but often just do not connect with them. The Secretclub is one way of connecting to strangers in a fun, safe and easy way. More
There are some books that will bore you to tears. Books that are a waste of time just sitting there on the shelf. But you have to read them, because they are relevant, or because they help you understand things, or because just because. This series of articles looks at some of these books. This instalment: We The Living by Ayn Rand. More
The other night, after a smashing game of Dungeon and Dragons, I said bye to my friends, turned on my lights, hopped on my trusty metal steed and started pedalling home down Yonge Street. In front of me was a woman riding her bike. Since she wasn't going fast enough for my taste, I made a point of passing her. She didn't like that. The pseudo race that followed proved to be one of the most competitive challenges I have ever endured. More
They were starting a new life together. She was happy.Wasn't she? This was everything she ever wanted. At least, it was now. It hadn't been hard leaving the city. She had graduated with honours. All that was left for her in the city was post-doc, or that extended master's program she had once worked so hard to get accepted to. It's not hard to give up dreams if new dreams come. More
Why Other People Think I Should
And Why They Are Wrong
Elections are coming up here in the Netherlands, Europe. Because of this I have been subjected to just about every cliché there is about the subject. But I do not vote. I made a very conscious decision not to vote and in fact I urge everybody to follow my example. More