Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Auditor general calls on RCMP to investigate Radwanski's 'reign of terror'

Okay, after reading the above headline on this Canadian Press story, I'd like to see pictures of the Radwanski guillotine!

Best check the Canadian government phone directory for the name "Robespierre".
"If you want to know anything, ask a mechanic I always say."

My friend Kevin Steel gets his mechanic, Thang Le, to explain why Canada sometimes is more of a "melting pot" society than it professes to be.

Sunday, September 28, 2003

Burmese Land is like monkey land...

Due to Raven's kind invitation, I'm a new co-author of the Hot Links weblog.

I began by sharing one of my fave bookmarks. It's Incorrect Music, a website devoted to the show of the same name. Incorrect Music, hosted by Irwin Chusid and Michelle Boule, aired on WFMU (a Jersey City New Jersey co-op free form radio station) from 1997 to 2002.

Here's part of a description of the show from its website:

....We present an asylum of crackpot and visionary music, covering sounds that are atrocious, outsider, blasphemous, or just plain WRONG, from the Shaggs and Shooby Taylor to Shatner.

For our little musical Mütter Museum, we seek the melodically adrift and the harmonically without anchor -- musicians cast away on their own musical islands. A true "Incorrect" artist must be sincere and lack self-awareness. A severe irony deficiency helps. Any humorous overtones to their work must be unintentional. Evoking the name "Weird" Al Yankovic is immediate disqualification from the realms of Incorrectness. We don't play bad karaoke tapes, the Singing Dogs or Mrs. Miller. Dr. Demento ain't our thing.

We don't present comedy — we're engaged in anthropology.

If you are intrigued, about half of the shows are archived here.

It's inspired me to start a little incorrect music collection of my own...
Springtime for Hitler

Mark Steyn writes about Triumph of the Will, the most infamous film of Leni Riefenstahl, who died earlier this month:

....Its language is that of feature films – not Warner Brothers gangster movies or John Ford westerns, but rather the supersized genres, the epics and musicals where huge columns of the great unwieldy messy mass of humanity get tidied and organized – and, if that isn’t the essence of fascism, what is? Riefenstahl has the same superb command of the crowd as Busby Berkeley, the same flair for human geometry (though Berkeley would have drawn the line at giving the gentlemen of the chorus as swishy a parade step as Hitler’s personal SS bodyguard do).

Saturday, September 27, 2003

"Do not blow your nose on the towels."

I like April Winchell's Rules For Using The Gym. It would seem that people using her local gym are particularly clueless.

Sorry, no permalink, but please scroll down to "The Rules According to Gym" on her website.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Add ye powederrd cheesse to the boxx of Krafft Dinnyer nooddles...

I've spotted an online transcript of a cookbook (pamphlet, really) of English medieval recipes: A Book of Cookrye, published in 1591.

A sample recipe:

To bake Chickins.
Season them with cloves, mace, sinamon ginger, and some pepper, so put them into your coffin, and put therto corance dates Prunes, and sweet Butter, or els Marow, and when they be halfe baked, put in some sirup of vergious, and some sugar, shake them togither and set them into the oven again.

Hmm, sirup of vergious...won't be able to ask the neighbours for a cup of that.

Thanks to the Medieval/Renaissance Food Homepage.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Gustav Dore, Bible artist

In the 1860s, French artist Gustav Dore did a series of illustrations for a new edition of the Bible. Many of them are posted online, such as these ones he did of the Gospel of Matthew.

A website which reproduces many of these illustrations notes:

His artistic style also greatly influenced some of the early biblical films, especially those of D. W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille. In fact, some of the scenes from DeMille's The Ten Commandments (1923 & 1956) look remarkably similar to the corresponding biblical illustration by Doré.
Girls gone baroque

My friend Kevin Michael Grace bemoans the rampant influence of "babes" in marketing "classical" music on The American Prowler's website. He illustrates the increased use of "lipstick lesbian posturing" by posting an odd photo of the all-female "classical" group bond on his blog.

Tuesday, September 23, 2003


The German Evangelical Church has commissioned a feminist version of the Bible. Planned changes incude references to "disciples and disciplesses". No translatrixes are blamed in the linked story.

Thanks Kathy.

Monday, September 22, 2003

Separated at birth?

Compare Ted Byfield, the founder of my old magazine and Sir Robert Menzies, Australia's Prime Minister during the 1950s and early 1960s.

Ted remains one of my journalistic heroes, and he still has a weekly column in the Edmonton Sun that is well worth reading and usually addresses national issues.

Aussie leftists of the 1960s, by the way, nicknamed Mr. Menzies "Ming" after a supposed resemblance to actor Charles Middleton as Ming the Merciless in the Flash Gordon serials. I wouldn't agree, but see what you think.
The daily deal dough

Another great update will soon be posted on Charles Stough's funny blog about newspapering: Newsgorilla. My fave: the newspaper contest that went awry.

Sunday, September 21, 2003


Otis Fodder's Friendly Persuasion show, devoted to strange and unusual music, musical rarities and other goodies, is back on the air. Give it a listen to, Sunday and Wednesdays.

Alas, not playable on my computer and not available on demand...but lots of fun to listen to.

Friday, September 19, 2003

Survived by the Purple People Eater

In other music news this week, Sheb Wooley, best known as an actor (in TV's Rawhide and the film High Noon in particular) and a singer of popular novelty songs, has died.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

Oh Rob!

Before she starred on The Dick Van Dyke Show, Mary Tyler Moore posed for record covers. Now you can see for yourself one of the reasons why the producers of the show remembered her and called her in for an audition.

Thanks to exclamation mark and Incoming Signals.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Stop press

Toronto journalist Kevin Libin, who has spent three years writing for Canadian Buisness, is to be the new editor of Ezra Levant's new Alberta Report, reports The Ambler. It doesn't hurt that Mr. Libin's family has Scrooge McDuck-vault amounts of cash.

Hmm, expect the new magazine to have few old AR hands, if any at all. Just a hunch I have, as the appointment of an editor is always decisive. I would suspect that Ezra wants to remake the magazine in his own image, which is of course his right. Urban conservatism, with a blend of the old Idler tossed in. Something that doesn't frighten the horses in Toronto.

That makes sense for Ezra to do. He is disinclined to try talk radio, the door to federal politics is barred to him for now after he gave up his chance at a seat so Harper could run in Calgary. Becoming Ted Byfield 2.0 seems to be the best way for Ezra to get the lasting influence that he wants.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Beach thoughts

Secret Agent Josephine likes to sit on the beach and think about stuff too, just like I like to sometimes do.

Thoughtful post that other people should also link to.
Does this make Oprah one of the Four Horsemen?

Who Is The Anti-christ? likes to call people who dismay him "The Antichrist." His latest target: Dr. Phil.

Hmm, let's see...

Has Dr. Phil sold his soul to the devil, eagerly awaiting the commands of the infernal price of darkness? Nope.
Does he have a friend who can bring fire down from heaven? Not unless it's sweeps week.
Does he have a giant image of himself that all must worship? Well, unless he lives in Beverly Hills...no.

Check out his arguments for yourself... :)

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Rick the Miscellanist's home engulfed by mushroom cloud after...

Courtesy chemistry students from the University of Minnesota have posted the ingredients for homemade "silly putty" and how to make it. [I guess that you let it harden a bit after it is like "slime".]

If you don't feel like driving to a nearby store, here's how to make liquid nitrogen ice cream. Kids, be sure to get your parents to help with this!

Friday, September 12, 2003

"When Toasters Kill", tonight on Fox

Yes, sticking a knife or fork in a toaster can really be dangerous. The Straight Dope has the details.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

Holy bleeding eyes, Batman!

The fine website Retrocrush displays the Worst comic book superhero costumes ever. My eyes!

In other comic news, you might be interested in this review of Weapon Brown, a collection of comic stories that imagine that Charlie Brown and the gang have struggled through a post-apocalyptic Road-Warrior-meets-Happiness-Is-A-Warm-Puppy future.

Nobody will be pulling his football away any more, that's for sure.
Bear saved by falling off tree onto trampoline

There's a video you can watch at the WKMG-TV website.. Thanks to Fark too.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

All Ben Mulroney. All the time.

The Ambler tries to figure out why Ben Mulroney is so popular and hazards a guess that the Canadian Idol host was made by Cyberdine systems.

Friday, September 05, 2003

I blogged the news today, oh boy

My friend Kevin Steel, thinking of his days as the Report's internet boffin, has excellent advice as he advises those who would return the publication from the dead: lead with your Internet presence.

Well worth reading.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

Lazarus, come out!

It seems that Ezra Levant is trying to bring Alberta Report back from the dead.

Ex-staffers have been wooed and efforts to raise money are underway. All I know is what I read on The Ambler's blog, so please follow the link.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

"Glen was 50 feet tall!"

Professor Barnhardt's Journal puts this question to TV "critics, fans and those behind the scenes": What are your 10 favourite TV series?

Here's my top 12:

1. Mystery Science Theater 3000

and in no particular order:

The original Twilight Zone
The Simpsons
Whose Line Is It Anyway? (US version)
I Love Lucy
Hogan's Heroes
Monty Python
The original Star Trek

Honourable mentions to:

Leave It to Beaver (guilty pleasure)

I should also vote for The A-Team as I really liked that show when I was a kid.
The stars didn't predict this

A Canadian professor--Ivan Kelly of the University of Saskatchewan--has helped with a study in the latest issue of the Journal of Consciousness Studies which debunks astrology. Prof. Kelly and Australian scientist and former astrologer Geoffrey Dean studied 2,000 people born in 1958. They "studied more than 100 different characteristics, including occupation, anxiety levels, marital status, aggressiveness, sociability, IQ levels and ability in art, sport, mathematics and reading - all of which astrologers claim can be gauged from birth charts", notes this Telegraph story on their study.

However, they found that when they grouped all the people by their date of birth that something unusual happened, if you put credence in astrology. Those who were born on the same day were often widely different from each other in many areas of their lives, instead of being sterotypical Leos, Scorpios and such.

Anyways, the Telegraph story has more details if you are interested.

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Pud! Pud! Pud!

Dubble Bubble bubble gum displays some of its Pud comics online. I remember seeing different comics than these, as ours in Canada had to bilingual. One of Pud's friends, I remember vaguely, had his turtleneck sweater pulled up all the way to his nose.

When I was a little kid, this gum cost 2 cents each. Candy bars cost about 25 to 40 cents. When you bought hockey cards, they came with this rock hard stick of gum that was really hard to chew.
"Blogs Canada, our home and native land..."

Here's a link to Blogs Canada, a new website that collates links to over 6,000 Canadian weblogs as I write. I'm linking to their top ten list, which seems to be different than the one that Colby Cosh has on his website.

Monday, September 01, 2003

Gospel music was invented in Scotland...

theorizes Yale University professor, who figures that the psalm-singing of the Hebrides church eventually led to the gospel singing style of today.

We may rest assured, however, that singing hymns with a Donald Duck voice is an American idea all the way.
May I not help you?

Why the service industry is dying, or "if you pay peanuts, expect to hire monkeys". Kevin Michael Grace has the details on some sad tales when he tries to buy things.