Saturday, October 27, 2012

Russian Cats Are Evolving

It is no secret, at least in the blogosphere, that I peruse cat videos. During my recent cat video travels I noticed something, because I am strange and notice patterns in trivial things.

Russian cats appear to be evolving at a rapid rate.

In America, cats sleep in sinks. In Japan, Maru entertains by reposing in boxes.  But in Russia, cats are washing dishes.

Exhibit One: Cat washes dishes.

Meanwhile, Flirt, our resident lovable calico moron, (trust me on this, she is as affectionate as she is stupid), spends 20 minutes trying to pull a door open that needs to be pushed. I have been forced to endure her desperate struggles for years. She still has not figured it out. In America, many videos show cute kittens that are still playing with round objects. But in Russia, cats have begun imitating human behavior and are feeding themselves.

Exhibit Two: Cat holding human container with food.

Conclusion: The Russian cats are going to invade us. Nobody will see it coming. You have been warned. Do not worry; I am training a highly effective cat army to defend our scented absorbent kitty litter by... *plaintive meowing*

...hang on. One of our cat soldiers is stuck behind the couch. Again. Walking backwards does not occur to her. Rescue team has been deployed.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Perspective Through Prehistory

From time to time, particularly in the current global climate, a reminder of how all of Homo sapiens spent the majority of its existence is required.

Here is is a brief and highly selective list of "It was much worse in prehistoric times."

1. Prehistoric humans had to hunt their food with flint on a stick. In return, the food hunted them back with teeth and claws. When the food left, humans migrated with them.

2. Public transportation was by foot only.

3. There were no stores or cities. They had to craft and make their own belongings.

4. There was no medication. There were no hospitals. At best, there was a healer, who administered ground up plants while chanting.

5. There was no one to sue if things went wrong.

6. If they fell off a mountain, they died. If something became infected, they died. If something ate them, they died. They ate what they found and hoped for the best. There were surprises. Average life expectancy was probably 30.

7. They lived with parasites and without toilet paper.

8. The infrastructure was usually trying to kill them.

And if you live somewhere where none of this sounds familiar, you are fortunate.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The Truth In Fiction: Titans

By R. Leinweber

Tragedy befalls us all. No one escapes loss or death. Thankfully, over the course of a lifetime, tragedy does not occur on a regular basis. That is not what this post is about. This post is about the losses we have all experienced, some more than others. The losses that have slowly turned the majority of the world's population back into Davids. David's Goliath might have been no more than an unfortunate person with acromegaly; possibly being described as "larger than life". Metaphorically speaking, today's Goliaths are closer to the ancient Titans.

This is not the world I grew up in.  This is the world we have been warned about, particularly through fiction, one of the methods used to circumvent suppression of opinion and truth. It is sometimes difficult to separate fact from fiction, especially when the media employs the latter so readily.

I was too young when I read the prohibitive future envisioned by George Orwell in his novel 1984.  Too inexperienced to appreciate its meaning or understand the context.  The current list of "something is wrong" is long: mergers, dividends, recession, collapse, climate change, globalization, overpopulation, dumbification, newsspeak, technology that permits control, the illusion of freedom and choices, the future cost of cutting funding to sciences and the arts, profit margins and call centers.

Even George Orwell did not foresee the unimaginable evil of call centers.  Call centers that pay employees a dollar per day to accomplish one thing; keep your money, while wasting your time so that profit margins for lemons increase.

This is Kratos:

Kratos, for the uninitiated non-gamer, is the protagonist in the series God of War. The plot is very brief, the gratuitous violence is not. Kratos has been wronged by the Gods of Olympus and seeks revenge. On his journey to destroy Olympus, Kratos eliminates a number of monstrous nobodies and mythological creatures until he encounters the Titans.

This is Kratos fighting the Titan Cronos:

Right there. Between Cronos' fingernails is Kratos.

Actually, there is not much or any fighting when it comes to the Titans. Kratos spends most of his time with the Titans avoiding being blown away or squished. Orwell's Winston failed where Kratos succeeded:

2. You figure out the puzzle on how to get around them.
3. There is a metaphor here.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Dear Blogger: Powered By Google, Powered By Bloggers. Part 1.

I thought I should address the recent changes you have made. We need to have a little chat. Please step into my office.

1. I preferred the old word verification system. It created fun, imaginary words that we could comment on. The new verification system requires a thorough knowledge of cryptography, hieroglyphs and the evolutionary benefits of compound eyes. I cannot tell whether I am looking at an "i" with serious stomach cramps or a zombified "8". Nor do I want to squint at images of people's house numbers.
2. I do not have time for this.
3. Neither does anyone else.
4. You have taken the FUN out of commenting, which is how we communicate.
5. The new dashboard is not "streamlined" as you claim. It looks like email dating back to the 80s.
6. I miss my horizontal tabs; they were efficient. Now I have to click 3 times instead of once. Then I forget why I signed in to begin with.
7. This takes the FUN out of procrastinating.
8. Which makes me angry. 
9. Do you know what happens when I get ANGRY????

Jean Paul Sartre

10. I read a book. Made out of paper. With cats.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

December 21, 2012. The day before December 22, 2012.

Ladies and Gentlemen. Start your hoarding and don't forget to use your extreme coupons. Less than 3 months left before absolutely nothing happens.

In recent news, it was discovered that the Mayans did not run out of rock, but continued their astronomical calculations on a different piece of rock. Note: They never predicted the end of the world.

 I am not certain whether the cultural significance
of sticking out your tongue has changed
over the last 5000 years.

Some debunking is in order:

The Planet
The "planet" that defies all laws of physics and is heading our way with its magical thruster system has yet to appear. It should be visible by now. Even amateur astronomers should be able to pick this one up. If it actually existed.

During my own procrastinating investigation of this "planet" on the interwebs, I found many images of stars. Stars are stationary. Relatively speaking. I am being imprecise, but if stars start moving out of their solar systems to go on a little galactic trip, the galaxy is falling apart and then we have bigger problems than stockpiling. If something planet-sized were to collide with our planet, I do not think learning how to survive underground would be very useful or productive. Earth gone. Good luck in space. With your camping gear.

The Alien Invasion
Call me a geek, but I think this one could be really exciting. They would unite us as a species, because the human race would now have a common enemy to hate. I smell global cooperation.

Supernovas? Nothing close enough to go supernova and affect us. If there was, think "Big Bang". Moot point.

Rather than blaming the universe for our sins, maybe we could focus our energy and resources right here on our pale blue dot and do something about climate change, renewable and sustainable energy, overpopulation, mass extinction, pollution, famine, poverty...

In the meantime watch for the unused camping gear sales in January 2013.