Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Pat Summitt video/ Astronaut Farmer

First...for those who have arrived here in search of a video of Pat Summitt singing Rocky Top during the media time out of the men's game yesterday, go to this page:

Pat Summitt and the Tennessee Lady Vols

where you can see the complete video (from Youtube) and read about Summitt and her teams.

Now, for Astronaut Farmer - this is just a brief entry as I have much to say about this movie but I've got something else to do first...

I didn't care for it. Sure there was some good imagery, some good messages...but also some bad messages. This is the type of movie you could make 20 years ago when we all thought the world was sane and Andy Griffith could build a rocket to take him into outerspace to collect space junk (at least he had a purpose and would be able to sell that space junk for a profit). Today there's no way a man could build a rocket and launch it in his backyard....twice. And for what - to go around the earth accomplishing nothing except 'being there.'

Anyway, more later.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Pat Summitt rocks

Non-sci-fi post today, but got to give props to Pat Summitt, head coach of the Lady Vols, who showed her support for the men's basketball team today by singing Rocky Top and getting on top of a pyramid (albeit a short one) to cheer on the team.

If you're a fan of Pat Summitt, check out my site:

The Lady Vols: WCBB Standard Bearer.

Hopefully I'll be able to update it in another couple of weeks with the news that the Lady Vols have won their seventh straight championship...beating Duke in the process!

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Sci fi on BBC 7 - Space Hacks

Space Hacks
The Last Postman: Sci-fi comedy starring Dan Mersh, Tim Key, Prunella Scales and Dan Tetsell. Episode 3 of 4.

is the latest Space Hacks - I seem to have missied episode 2, unfortunately. Well - in one way only. I didn't particularly care for the first ep, but for completeness sake I would have liked to have heard the second ep!

Also on Sunday (and thus running for 6 more days)

The Laxian Key
The mysterious deaths of space tourists on Planet Party gives planet decontaminators Arnold and Gregor a unique job opportunity. Episode 1 of 4.

Fantastic Tales
Hell Screen: A chilling horror set in medieval Japan. A powerful Lord clashes with an arrogant painter leading to tragedy.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Complete Oneira

Broadcast on BBC Radio 7 (repeats) from Monday Feb 19 - Feb 23, 2007

The Big Chill: Museum guard Oneira meets a 400 year old Dutchman who invites her on a quest to discover the secrets of the universe. Episode 1 of 5.

Sleight of Mind: Oneira is interrogated by a man from the Electricity Company - but is he trying to help her, or is he an alien? Episode 2 of 5.

A String of Time: Oneira ends up in the Texan Desert with a dead American comic and a thirteenth century Friar. Episode 3 of 5.

The Thing with Two Cappuccinos: When she forgets to pay for a coffee Oneira is chased by multiplying android coffee bar staff. Episode 4 of 5.

Mind the Gap: Oneira ends up talking to herself, literally, and finds her other self very rude. Episode 5 of 5.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


Nothing sci-fi-ish to report today, mainly because I've been doing elance work and now that I'm finished I'm winding down by looking at Youtube instead of doing other work that needs to be done....

Anyway, if there are any classical music lovers out there the following clip is supposedly really funny. It is amusing just watching it, but if you know how Rachmaninoff wrote the piece, and how this guy solves the problem of having "small hands" in some sections and "large hands" in others, it's apparently hysterical.

I don't know, but I'm about to go look up the piece at Wikipedia and see what they say about it...

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Sunday on BBC 7

Doctor Who
Human Resources: Under fire from an old foe, the Doctor is startled to learn about the true nature of Lucie's fate. Can he save her future? Episode 2 of 2. [Rptd Mon 12.00am].

Beyond the Vortex
Looking Forward, Looking Back: Is this the end of the line for the Doctor and Lucie? A season retrospective with Jason, Barney and Nick. Episode 8 of 8.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Sci fi on radio

BBC 7 has only one science fiction serial going at the moment, called Pattern Recognition, by William Gibson. It's not a dramatised play, simply a reading of the book. All five episodes (Monday through Friday) are now available for listening.

Doctor Who's Human Resources pt 1 is about to drop off the radio for Sunday.

Part 2 of Space Hacks begins tomorrow:
Space Hacks
Two Men and a Baby Alien: Charlie and Moog risk Korg's wrath when their mission to deliver his nephew to playgroup goes awry. Episode 2 of 4.
---Charlie and Moog are two reporters for an intergalactic news company. A comedy.
The only science fiction offering from Radio Spirits is every Wednesday, with their Superman serial. Right now its on Chapter 3 of Dr. Bly's Confidence Game.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

1/3 of the world entertains the other 2/3

That was a prediction of Isaac Asimov in one of his essays. I can't bring to mind which one at the moment, but it was in one of his earlier essays from 1960-1963, and I do have it listed in the quote book... (

The reason I bring it up is because he prediced that pre 1964, and today, 41 years later, his prediction has more than come true. People put all kinds of crap up on Youtube, from film of themselves vomiting in a toilet because they're too drunk to stand up, to singing, to sex. And people *watch* this pablum.

Then of course there's the reality shows. And the talk show crap with Maury Povich, where people who would do better to fix their lives in private so it doesn't humiliate their children instead air their disgustingly dirty laundry on TV for audiences around the world to *laugh* at.

And then of course there is the circus that is the death of Anna Nicole Smith. More men claiming to have had affairs with her are coming out of the woodwork claiming to be the father of her baby - and you know they're doing it because of the prospect of getting those billions of dollars of her fortune that the baby *may* inherit - when she's old and grey and all her "dad's" have passed away and the lawyers have finally sucked the well dry.... she might get a few thousand out of it when all is said and done...

So, on to the much cleaner worlds of BBC Radio Listen again, where all this week you can hear: Pattern Recognition. It began on Monday, and that ep will be available for 3 more days before dropping off.

Meanwhile, I listened to the first episode of The Mauseleum Club and found it quite amusing, a pastiche on The Invisible Man called The Inaudible Man.

The Sunday Doctor Who, part 1 of Human Resources, is about to drop off, so if you haven't listened to it yet be sure you do so.

Also on Monday, you can hear Terry Pratchett in a 4-year old interview about his 4th Discworld book Mort, which is pretty interesting.

Pattern Recognition
Lorelei King reads this very 21st Century detective story by 'the godfather of cyberpunk', William Gibson. Episode 1 of 5.

Pattern Recognition
Cayce travels to Tokyo in search of the maker of the online footage. Episode 2 of 5.

Doctor Who
Human Resources: Lucie Miller starts her first day in a new job. Or does she? Is it possible that her time with the Doctor was merely a daydream? Episode 1 of 2.

Beyond the Vortex
Nick Briggs explains how to sound like a Cyberman, without first going through the painful process of conversion. Episode 7 of 8.

Monday, February 12, 2007

The Vultures are Gathering

Things regarding Anna Nicole Smith are getting really ridiculous. Zsa Zsa Gabor's husband - before any paternity tests have even happened, says that he "may" be the father of Anna Nicole's baby daughter, and wants custody. Zsa Zsa's 90 and she's had strokes, etc., I hope she has the strength to dump the guy and take all his money away.

Clearly, all he's interested in is the potential fortune this baby may inherit - that's what every single man in Smith's life was after... it's just a pathetic circus and probably we'll see two competing movies of the week in the next couple of months.

Disgusting. And very sad for the poor baby.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Daniel Radcliffe Gets Naked (But not here!)

A lot of fuss is being made about Daniel Radcliffe starring in Equus, the play by Peter Shaffer. (Or Antony Shaffer, I always get those two mixed up.) That is because in the play, Radcliffe gets totally naked. I can't tell you why, never seen the play, but I'm sure there's some 'legitimate' reason for it.

But the photos that are making the rounds of the internet, of Radcliffe naked (but shot only from the belly up) seem to be made simply to be sexually attractive - they don't say anything about the play, do they? So the nakidity, as Radar O'Reilly would call no longer merely part of the play but actually just a reason to get people into the theater who just want to see naked actors.

As for Radcliffe wanting to break away from the Potter stereotype...this is definitely the way to do it..

For those who want to see them:

Click on the top banner ad for more Radcliffe pics!

Read about him here:

Or stock up on Harry Potter movies!

Friday, February 09, 2007

"Anna Nicole charmed us"

That's one of the headlines on my Google home page today. Where do they get that crap, I wonder. I had and have no interest in the woman. Indeed, she embodied all that is wrong with women today - marry for money, put your life on TV so everyone can look at it, etc. If she hadn't been in a fight to get billions of dollars from her dead husband's estate - no one would have given her a second look. That's another embodiment of all that's wrong with American culture today. No talent, no intelligence - but if you've money and look good naked, guys'll fawn all over you.

Anna Nicole Simpson died a couple of days ago. Autopsy yet to have occurred, but at the age of 39 how else could she have died except by drug overdose - much as her son did one year ago. She leaves a baby girl - and only a paternity test can tell who the father is. That's a nice thing for a girl to grow up knowing - her mother was so careless with birth control and so popular withthe guys that she has no idea who the father of her child is. Kind of like those crap shows with Maury Povich, or whatever - now we realize it's not just the poor and uneducated who ruin their lives - the rich and uneducated can do it just as well. (Or, in the case of Denise Nowak, the very well off and very well educated.)

Anyway, Simpson's claim to fame is that when she was 26, she married a man who was 89. Not coincidentally, I'm sure, this guy was a billionaire. He died 2 years later, and I guess didn't leave a will, or something - at any rate legal battle was enjoined at once as Simpson tried to get his fortune for herself. I know only the barest details about it because I thought it was a terrible story then and I think it's a terrible story now. Good riddance.

Anyway, end of rant.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

TechnoOcean Time

I've been spending the last few days updating my TechnoOcean material, which I hadn't worked on since its inception. I'm working on databases for shipwrecks, submersible and research craft, aquariums, organizations and programs, and reviews.

Popped over to the library and picked up the following books:

Eyewitness Compaions: Scuba Diving, by Monty Halls and Miranda Krestovnikoff
Rough Westher Seamanship for Sail and Power, by Roger Marshall
Great Sailing Ships of the World, by Otmar Schauffelen
The Complete Encyclopedia of Fishing: A Comrehensive Guide to Coarse Fishing, Sea Angling and Game Fishing, by Tony Miles, Martin Ford and Peter Gathercole

I haven't been bothering to read all the articles on astronaut Karen Nowak...I just can't stand them. All that intelligence, all that knowledge - she was supposed to be on the next shuttle mission, too -- and she throws it away because of a love triangle.

Meanwhile, personal responsibility continues to become a thing of the past. Apparently 3 people have recently been killed in New York City because they weren't paying attention, stepped out into traffic, and were run over. Now, people have been using Walkmans since their inception. Walkmans have now been superseded by Ipods. People have these in their ears and so can't hear what anyone is saying, sounds of sirens, etc. So instead of saying, "Hey, people, you should keep the sound down so you can hear when someone yells that a car is coming at you." and letting them have the responsibility to do that simple task, the state is introducing legislature to BAN electronic devices from crosswalks, etc.

Now how stupid is that?

Similarly, IPod and other music machine manufacturers are being sued because they make their machines so that the volume can be turned up to "unsafe" levels which can cause deafness. Never mind that it should be a person's personal choice how loud he wants his tape recorder to be - maybe he's working at one end of a room and the machine's at the other - no, people must not be allowed the opportunity to use common sense, since they obviously have none. Machines must be made so that they can't be turned up very loud.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Rush Limbaugh gets into the act

Just listened to the first few minutes of the Rush Limbaugh show and of course he's all over this astronaut story. Calls her an astronaut "babe." Says her defense lawyer should claim she was driven insane by global warming. What a jerk.

The charges against Lisa Nowak, 43 have been now upgraded to attempted murder - and it does seem like this stupid bitch - I'm sorry, but that's all I can call a woman who has a great career, a husband and 3 kids of her own, and throws it away for "love," was really going to try to kill this other woman because she was a rival in her affections towards the male astronaut. And with all her intelligence, and all the examples of what not to do as seen on hundreds of TV crime shows, she still screwed it up.

Well...maybe in her heart of hearts she didn't mean to kill her? Because all she really needed to do was get a gun...although that could have been traced back to her...

It's just a sad, tragic story on many levels.

A blow to women everywhere

What does it take to become an astronaut? Years and years of training and dedication. As much as it takes to become a B-52 pilot. To throw it all away on a love triangle... to kidnap the woman who is supposedly your rival in affection with a man - -- no no no. If the guy cheats on you, you dump *him*.

Anyway, I am so saddened to hear of this terrible story. How this woman could throw away her future in space - what in the world was she thinking????

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - An astronaut charged with attempting to kidnap a romantic rival in a love triangle with another astronaut was ordered released on bail Tuesday under the condition that she not contact the alleged victim.

The judge told Lisa Marie Nowak, 43, she could be released on $15,500 bond, then asked if she understood the conditions. She responded, "yes."

Nowak, a married mother of three, stood in a jail uniform, usually facing down as the hearing was under way.

She faces charges including attempted kidnapping, attempted vehicle burglary with battery, destruction of evidence and battery.

Police said she drove 900 miles, donned a disguise and was armed with a BB gun and pepper spray when she confronted a woman she believed was a competitor for the affections of Navy Cmdr. William Oefelein, a fellow astronaut.

Nowak and Oefelein, 41, were both first-time fliers during separate shuttle missions last year. They trained together but never flew together.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Time Hops (complete) and Doctor Who

BBC 7 re-runs the same stuff over and over again. This can be annoying when you've heard it all 3 times...however in my case I have missed stuff - I record things and, getting a bit careless, I sometimes miss episodes.

So, anyway, Time Hops begins again on Monday, and you can listen to it for 5 days before it drps off the radar.

Time Hops - complete
Once Upon A Time: A scientist mouse called Eek escapes from the future and enlists the help of three children to save her planet. Episode 1 of 5.

Killing Time: The children catapult further back in time and find themselves in deep water. Episode 2 of 5.

Time After Time: Steph stumbles across an unexpected part of the puzzle to help Eek in the mission to save her planet. Episode 3 of 5

Long Time No See: Time-hopping seems to have brought the children nothing but trouble. Could a dodgy robot really make things better? Episode 4 of 5.

Time's Up: The children are convinced that the 'man from the BBC' will help them. But is he really what he seems? Episode 5 of 5.

There's a new Doctor Who

Doctor Who
No More Lies: The Doctor and Lucie gatecrash a posh party, and get more than they bargained for. Namely vortisaurs and a crumbling spaceship.

Beyond the Vortex
Barnaby Edwards talks about the musical elements in 'No More Lies'. Episode 6 of 8.

Friday, February 02, 2007

When do girls become sexually active?

There's a new law being passed in Texas which says girls at the age of 10-11 have to be injected with an inoculation against a *sexually transmitted* disease that gives women cervical cancer.

"The federal government approved Gardasil in June, and a government advisory panel has recommended that all girls get the shots at 11 and 12, before they are likely to be sexually active."

So if they have to get the shots at 11-12, does that mean that at age 12-13 they become sexually active? Scary...but probably true.

This is because, in my opinion, girls are taught from day 1 of their existence that they exist only so that they can be sexually attractive to boys. Wear the make up, dress in shirts that reveal your belly button and shorts that ride right up to below your butt, so that they can all get a good look. You're only worth anything depending on if you have a boyfriend - and even if you don't have a boyfriend - if you can get pregnant you can prove that at least a boy thought you were worth having sex with....

I'm not advocating that girls should be ashamed of their sexuality and wear burhkas and other crap like Muslim women are forced to do, I'm just saying that girls don't have enough respect for themselves and it's mass media -- commericals -- that must shoulder a lot of the blame.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it

Today is the 2nd day of outrage at Turner Broadcasting. They are the people who hired a PR firm to promote a cartoon on Adult Swim called Teenage Hunger Force - or something similar. The PR firm got the bright idea of putting battery operated signs on newspaper vending machines - the sign looks like a smiley face with a hand with an extended middle finger. (Extended middle finger. What taste. What class. Yes...I want to watch this cartoon!)

Anyway, people in Boston panicked, thinking they were bombs. Police were called. Packages were detonated. Two people placing the things were arrested.

And I'm thinking to stupid is this? To do this type of thing in a post 9-11 world is just asking for trouble. I mean, it's one thing to be a bus driver on a Greyhound making a joke that he's going to take his passengers to the Taliban (he'd had to take a detour and the passengers wanted to know what was going on and asked in a rude manner - last joke was on him of course as the cops came and arrested him, thanks to cell phones.)

But to place things with batteries, wires and flashing lights on newspaper vending machines? And expect people not to panic?

But...and here's the thing...this is not the first time this has happened. It was last year that a similar advertising campaign was conducted... in New York, I think it was. On that occasion, the objects were actually inside the vending machines. I think they were advertising 24 or some similar television show. And there was a panic, and the devices were removed.

So why didn't the PR firm this time, or the bright bulb at Turner who signed off on their idea, know about that???

It's a case not only of learning from past events, but also just plain old common sense.

Having said that, I don't think the guys who were placing the devices should have been arrested. They were doing an *advertising* job, not something illegal. If anyone should go to jail, it should be the people who thought up the idea in the first place. (But of course, they're the "suits" - ie people with money, so nothing will happen to them. Meantime the worker bees, who have no money, will be fined and sent to jail, most likely. But maybe they can sue afterwards and give some lawyers employment for a few years.)