Friday, March 31, 2006

Prison Break: The Soap Gun Trick

In Nebraska, a prisoner escaped using a gun made from a bar of soap. Seriously. That's one of the oldest tricks in the book. The prisoner's escape plan sounds like something out of Prison Break, but less complicated. He pretended to spit blood, making them think he was sick. There was no doctor on duty, so they had to drive him to the hospital. The police van had a screen separating him and the guards. On the way to the hospital, the prisoner put the gun to the guard's head. In the dark, the gun looked real enough that they fell for it. He forced the guards out, threw away the gun, and drove off.They should make these guards watch prison movies as part of their training. Next thing you know, I'll read a story about how a prison cell looked empty, and when the guard went into the cell to see what happened, the prisoner dropped on him from the ceiling. They should spray armed prisoners with water to see if their guns melt.
Categories: news

COTF: Virtual Hugs

MauriceM recently pointed me to a story about scientists who are trying to create PJs that use vibration and temperature to give "virtual hugs" over the Internet. Sounds like a good idea for parents who can't get home to their kids on time. Also sounds like it's time for another...


BOB: Hey, Joe, it's five o'clock. You're still here?
JOE: Yeah, I gotta work overtime today.
BOB: Oh. But...what's that you're working on?
JOE: It's the remote for my kids' hugging pajamas. I have to set it for their bedtime to give them a hug every night.
BOB: Aw, that's sweet. Except, uh, it looks like you're setting that one pretty high.
JOE: Yeah. Little Billy broke his mother's favorite cookie jar, so I'm turning the hug over his butt to high. These hugging pajamas also have a spanking option.

COTF: Face/On
COTF: Skin Treatment

Thursday, March 30, 2006

My Magic Shirt

I have a shirt that my wife and I call the Magic Shirt. It almost never needs ironing. I can crumple it up in a ball and throw it in the corner, and when I pick it up, it looks as smooth as if it was pressed and dry-cleaned. I save it for emergencies. When I'm in a hurry and don't have time to iron, I grab the Magic Shirt. I wish I had a hundred more like it. It's 2005. Where is the technology to make all clothes wrinkle-free? That's what I wanna know. If this one shirt can do it, all clothes should be like that.
Categories: misc

The Frinkahedron: Simpsons Become Reality

If you watched The Simpsons on March 26, you may have noticed a strange opening where real people re-enacted the opening of The Simpsons. You might have thought "Cool, life-action Simpsons!" And then you thought "Wait a minute, they don't really look like the characters." And you might have thought "Why does everything look so weird, kinda small, and not like Springfield at all." The answer, of course, is to blame the British. Turns out the British cable channel Sky One created the segment as a commercial for the new season of The Simpsons. The US version liked it so much, they put it into a real show. That's cool.

Bonus: If you missed it, check out the video at YouTube.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Ultraviolent: Ultraviolet

Well, we finally got around to seeing Ultraviolet. Not what I expected at all. It had cool scenes, action-packed sequences, amazing special effects...but it was weird. Really weird. Aeon Flux weird. One of those futuristic movies that didn't even pretend to be realistic. Things you should know that will make this movie less confusing: a) in the future, they perfected the technology of putting big things into little spaces, and b) Violet is a vampire. But even knowing that, there were parts of the movie that made me go "huh?" Still, there were some amazing action sequences for a PG-13. She kills a lot of people. But there's no blood, so it's okay...right. I could tell they cut stuff out, so there will most likely be an unrated DVD. And they should pay royalties to Kill Bill, because that was an obvious influence. But I can't be that hard on it because it delivered lots of action, some jaw-dropping scenes, and Milla Jovovich lookin' hot. It'll probably make more sense on the second viewing.

This movie got creamed on Rotten Tomatoes, but gave (I think) the fairest review.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

God's Debris

I've been reading Scott Adams' free e-book, God's Debris. It's a fictional conversation between an unnamed man and a man who literally knows everything. It basically claims to answer all of life's questions based on the premise that simplicity is truth. Adams makes some good points, like about how men and women see each other as defective versions of themselves, and how most people don't really believe in God because they would follow his commandments if they did. But the book is not as earth-shattering as he thinks it is. Saying that time is an illusion created by our minds is one thing. When Adams finally reveals his grand theory - that the universe is composed of debris left over by God's suicide - his main character is literally rocked by the revelation, but my reaction was "Oh, gimme a break." Kind of silly, which I find ironic, considering the book is supposed to be about a critical analysis of commonly-held beliefs.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Japan vs America: Lap Pillow

A big seller in Japan is what's called a lap pillow. Basically, it's a pillow shaped like a woman's lap. The idea is that lonely guys can feel like they're lying in the lap of a beautiful woman...with no torso. And before you start going on about how pathetic that is, and how pathetic men are, there's also an "arm pillow" for women without boyfriends.
Categories: news

News Nuggets

A new study shows that one-fourth of U.S. workers use their employers' Internet to look for other jobs. A similar study shows that one-fourth of U.S. workers are fired for being stupid.

Three hostages were freed in Iraq. They spent four months under the grip of ruthless religious fanatics bent on destruction. Unfortunately, some of Pat Robertson's church members escaped the compound.

Microsoft announced that its new version of the Windows operating system will be delayed. Looks like we'll have to wait a little longer for our computers to crash.

NASA has halted spacewalks on the space station due to defects in the handrails. They plan to make spacewalks safer by reinforcing the handrails, and gluing little rubber flowers to the outside of the space station.

The CDC reported an increase in resistant strains of tuberculosis around the world. And in a related story, on his recent world tour, Ozzie Osborn has been coughing a lot.

A new book, Game of Shadows, accuses Barry Bonds of taking steroids to boost his home-run totals. Bonds held a news conference to dispute the charges, but couldn't fit his head through the door.

Japan won the first-ever international World Baseball Classic. Cuba came in second place, but only because their players kept jumping over the walls to defect.

See you next Tuesday.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Creepy Little Kids

What's the deal with creepy little kids in horror movies? I just saw a trailer for the new movie, Stay Alive. And once again, the villain is a creepy little kid. Just like it was in the Grudge. And The Ring. I can understand The Ring, but what does a creepy little kid have to do with a videogame? Remember when horror villains were guys in masks with sharp objects? I blame the Japanese. They've got giant insects, big-eyed kids, and giant robots, and the scariest thing they can think of is a creepy little kid. They have parenting issues in that country.
Categories: entertainment

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Urning Your Place

What's up with people spreading ashes all over weird places? Once upon a time, someone who was cremated had his ashes put into an urn and kept by his relatives as a fond remembrance of himself, sort of like a gravestone that was portable. Now anyone who's cremated get their ashes scattered. A guy was arrested for throwing his mother's ashes on a football field. Hunter S. Thompson had his ashes blasted out of a cannon. The guy who played Scottie will get his ashes scattered out of the space shuttle. I never understood the whole "where to put my ashes" stuff. You're dead. It's not like Scottie's ashes are going "Whee, I'm in outer space!" I know it's symbolic, but symbolism can be taken too far. I think it takes away from the dignity of death when you plan on giving your ashes a field trip. And how'd you like to be a football player, knowing you're running across a football field with some guy's dead mother sprinkled on it?
Categories: opinion

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Kill The Smurfs For Peace

If I told you there was a new video on the Internet that shows Smurfs being killed by war planes, leaving Smurfette dead and Baby Smurf wailing over the corpses, you'd probably be shocked, but not too surprised. Heck, there's already plenty of video of Jar Jar Binks getting killed. But what makes this story interesting is who created the video - The United Nations Children's Fund. And what's also surprising is who approved the video - Peyo, the creator of the Smurfs. It turns out UNICEF created the video as a way to publicize the problem of child soldiers. You can check out the video at CBS, but just the picture was enough to shock me. While I think child soldiers are a real tragedy and a problem that needs to be publicized, I don't know if I could actually watch the video. I think this opens up a whole new world. Kill Barney to promote awareness of head lice. Massacre the Care Bears to promote school music programs.
Categories: news

Monopoly Kombat

What if boardgames got the same movie treatment as videogames?

Friday, March 17, 2006

Flashback: Madballs

Gross for one, gross for all. That was the slogan for the Madballs. They were just rubber balls decorated to look gross, but I always wanted one. Specifically, the eyeball one, Oculus Orbus. That looked cool. Man, hard to believe that was once considered controversial. Nowadays, those things would be considered suitable for preschoolers.

Fun Facts:
* Madballs had an animated movie and a comic book series.
* The company also released Head Popping Madballs, action figures with heads that would pop off.

* An overview of the Madballs
* This Japanese site has a list of all the Madballs and pictures of them.

Flashback: Electric Dreams
Flashback: Bionic Six
Flashback Friday and Son

The Problem With Wikipedia

Once upon a time, I believed in the glorious vision of Wikipedia. But now that it's achieved a measure of success, Wikipedia has become a battleground for false information and warring ideologies. A man had a fictional and slanderous biography written about him and copied to other websites. A libertarian website blasts Wikipedia for not including the idea that the Nazi salute is derived from the US pledge of allegiance. Some people are even calling for a boycott.

The problem is that Wikipedia is a victim of its own success. With greater attention comes greater scrutiny to its failures. The fact is that it's open-source, which means anyone can screw around with it. That's its strength and weakness. The scientist can update entries on rocket science as easily as the high-school dropout can write dirty words into the entries on Beethoven. And the encyclopedia is heavily skewed towards its audience. Nerd-oriented topics such as Bill Gates are heavily contributed to while female-oriented topics like the girdle has two paragraphs. I personally think the good far out-weighs the bad, but maybe an open-source encyclopedia isn't a good idea, after all.
Categories: opinion

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Paris Hilton's Blue Steel

The Gossiplist finally noticed what I've noticed for years; Paris Hilton only has one pose. Every picture she takes uses the same pose.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Joyride vs. Joystick

Police following a suspected drunk driver got a surprise when the driver parked and stepped out, revealing a seven-year old boy. It turns out the kid was anxious to get his license and decided to go on an unauthorized test drive. The kid knew enough to use his turn signal and put on his seatbelt, so he's got a good start. But he's not ready for the open road yet. Being only four feet tall, his mechanical skills needed work. The officers described him as driving like a drunk driver, weaving all over the road. He was having trouble with steering and had to jump down to hit the brake. The slow-speed chase ended when he drove home and parked. Somebody needs to get this kid a PS2 and a copy of Gran Turismo.
Categories: news

Monday, March 13, 2006

Memo to Bodie Miller

This message is for Bodie Miller, the US Olympic skier who talked the most before the Games, and ultimately failed to even qualify for three of his events and whose best in the other two was fifth. When asked if he was disappointed, Bodie said: "I just did it my way...I just want to go out and rock. And man, I rocked here."

Bodie, the United States didn't send you to the 2006 Olympic Games so you could "rock." They sent you to the Olympics to compete. If the US had known you were more interested in drinking than in skiing, they would have sent someone else and left you at home. That way you could waste your own time and money, and maybe they could have sent a real athlete to compete in your place. Or at least an athlete who can cover his dismal failure with a better explanation than some lame, meaningless jargon.
Categories: sports

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Mickey Mouse Packs Heat

I once heard that the guys in the Disney character suits at Disneyworld are actually security guards. That kind of makes sense. They walk around the park all day long, you can't see what they're looking at, and they look harmless. But imagine you stole a purse and suddenly Donald Duck charges and tackles you. He pulls a gun out of his shorts and yells "Freeze, mother*****!" That would scar kids for life.
Categories: misc

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Geektalk: Bane Lite

Of all the sins of the Batman movies, the greatest has to be the portrayal of Bane in Batman Forever. In the comics, the only thing that keeps Bane from being Batman's greatest villain is the Joker. The Joker is Batman's equal. But Bane is Batman's superior, both physically and mentally. He's the only villain who ever truly beat Batman, breaking his back and causing him to quit for a period of time. But in Batman Forever, Bane is just a brainless sidekick for Poison Ivy. I'm so happy that the Batman movie series has been rebooted with Batman Begins. Maybe one day, we'll see Bane in all his glory.

As always, you can brush up on the history of Bane in Wikipedia.

Geektalk: Arm Chopping in Star Wars
Geektalk: Why Does the Enterprise Have Running Lights?
Geektalk: Anakin!

Categories: entertainment

Jokebook: Sinful Drink

A guy's about to walk into a bar when a nun charges up to him and screams, "Drinking alcohol is a sin! Repent or be damned to Hell!"

The guy says, "Now hold on, sister. Have you ever tried alcohol?"

"Well, no I haven't," the nun admitted.

The guy asks, "Then how do you know if it's that bad?"

"Well, I suppose I can't," the nun says, "but I can't very well take my first drink right here in plain view."

"No problem. I'll have them put it in a teacup. No one'll know. Hang on."

So the nun waits outside while the guy goes inside and calls the bartender to order two beers, one in a glass, and the other in a teacup.

The bartender says, "Oh no, it's not that nun again, is it?"
Categories: comedy

Friday, March 10, 2006

It's Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

In case you're thinking "Where the heck did that come from?", here's the original animation they're ripping off...I mean, paying homage to: Ebaumsworld presents Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

In The Slow Lane of the Internet

It's time I confessed. Myspace. RSS feeds. Flickr. These are things I don't understand and have never used. I never thought I would get to this point. I'm behind the times. I remember when I was on the cutting edge. World Wide Web? Been there, done that. Newsgroups? Go there every day. HTML? Could write it in my sleep. But I guess I got too complacent and let things pass me by. I'm the Internet equivalent of your Grandpa. But at least I figured out this whole blog thing. I'd better start catching up.
Categories: misc

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

V for Very Cool Movie

The film adaptation of the graphic novel V For Vendetta is coming out, and it's about time. Never read the comic, but I've seen pictures from it and I always thought V had a great costume. That big, cheerful grin contrasts so well with the menace of his appearance and actions. I wondered how Alan Moore came up with it, and it turns out that V's supposed to look like Guy Fawkes, a revolutionary British hero who was tried and hanged for trying to blow up Parliament. Never heard of him. Except for that time they tricked me into celebrating Guy Fawkes Day when I was in Grenada. But the movie looks cool.

If you've never read the V For Vendetta graphic novel, you can brush up on it at Wikipedia.
Categories: entertainment

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Shark Tale: Remote-Controlled Sharks

Recently, it came out that the US military is funding research on remote-controlled sharks. The idea is that they can implant electrodes in the shark's brain, which will control whether the shark goes up or down, left or right. It's mind-control. Obviously, it's disturbing to think of the government controlling the minds of animals. Animal-rights groups are ticked. But I think there's a more important problem here. They say they plan to use the sharks for espionage, because they can move quietly and won't be detected by radar. But you can't tell me at least one of those generals didn't ask, "Can we rig up an electrode to open and close their mouths?" Because the idea of sending a shark to swim up and bite off Fidel Castro's head is irresistable.
Categories: science

Banner Image Props

Just wanted to give props to MauriceM for his design of the new Monkey Migraine Mountain banner. Way better than my old one.

MySpace: The Movie Deal

I recently discovered YouTube and saw Myspace: The Movie in the listings. I never bothered to watch it, because I couldn't understand the concept. How do you make a movie about MySpace? Then I stumbled across a story that the creator of Myspace: The Movie, David Lehre, just signed a deal to produce a movie with MTV. This probably sounds like sour grapes, but I think this film is vastly overrated. I agree there's a lot to make fun of with MySpace, but I don't think this movie goes far enough. Oh, well, not my decision to make.
Categories: entertainment

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Chappelle Theory

The reappearance of Dave Chappelle in his new movie Block Party has drawn a lot of attention to the mystery of his disappearance. One website claims to know the answer, and it's not what you think. Chappelle suggests that a group of African-American celebrities including Oprah and Bill Cosby conspired to drive Dave Chappelle to abandon his show. It blew me away. The website has triggered a lot of debate about African-American humor and political correctness. Crazy? You be the judge.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Once and Future Me

Inspired by Deirdre Cooley's deep and thought-provoking conversation with her past self, I decided to have my own conversation with my younger self. Here we go...

Hi FutureMe.

Hi PastMe. How's it going?

Okay. You?

Not too bad. Whatcha up to?

Watching TV. You?

Surfing the Internet.

The Internet, huh? That any good?

It's not bad. You'll like it.

Cool. What's TV like in the future?

Eh, not that great. Lost is pretty good.

Got any good toys?

I don't really play with toys anymore. How you feelin'?

Sick. They ever cure athsma?

Not yet. But they have some new medications.


Well...see ya, PastMe.

Later, FutureMe.

Wow...I sure was boring.
Categories: comedy

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Hip-Hop Song Tells Women To Shake Their Booty

Breaking news from The New Yuk Times: Hip-Hop Song Tells Women To Shake Their Booty.

Far Side Becomes Real has a bunch of very funny contests to alter photos based on themes. One of the best ideas was to create real-life Gary Larson cartoons. You're supposed to turn one of his Far Side cartoons into reality with photos. I think that's a great idea, and couldn't resist creating one of my own. If only the contest was still running...oh, well, enjoy.

For more real-life Far Side Cartoons, check out some more of's collection.

Update: I changed the cartoon to add some headphones and make the caption more cartoon-like.