Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Bizarro Mickey Mouse: Part One

Two stories that broke recently seemed to connect in my mind, so I'll discuss them both. It seems that in two other countries, it's been revealed that people are using unauthorized copies of Mickey Mouse, and doing so in nefarious ways.

On the one hand, we have Tomorrow's Pioneers, a Palestinian children's show hosted by Farfour, a Mickey Mouse look-a-like who preaches the destruction of Israel to little children. You can actually watch a clip on YouTube and it's pretty shocking. The show includes children reading poems with lines like "It is the time of death, we will fight a war." Farfur also criticizes President Bush. Just what we all want in a children's show - political rhetoric. Not surprisingly, Disney isn't too happy about it. There's a great quote from Walt Disney's own daughter calling the character "pure evil." Can't argue too much about that.

After international outcry, the character of Farfour was taken off the show, but amazingly, they actually killed him! In this clip, we see Farfour being given the land of Palestine by his grandfather, and then the Jewish conspiracy (for some reason, in the form of a P. Diddy-like black man) tries to bribe and then stabs Farfour to death to get the land. They actually martyred a cartoon character in front of its underage audience. No matter how you feel about the conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians, I hope we can all agree that's not something children need to be exposed to. Although I personally wouldn't mind seeing Barney getting stabbed to death...
Part two coming up.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Movie Rules: Knock-Out

Movie rule #4,627: Even the slightest head impact will knock someone unconscious.

Most common in: Action Movies

The typical scenario: The hero whacks somebody on the back of the head with his fist or a gun and the enemy crumples instantly like a sack of potatoes. And once knocked unconscious, they will stay unconscious for as long as they are required to be. Of course, in real-life, hitting someone on the head will usually just make them mad. People do get knocked unconscious, but that's somewhat rare and usually only last for a few minutes. And a head impact that knocks someone unconscious is just as likely to kill them. Imagine a movie where James Bond sneaks up to a guard, thumps him on the head, and the guard turns around and shoots him. I'd like to see that.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Jurassic Slowpoke: T-Rex Walking Animation

The Tyrannosaurus Rex has been the king of dinosaurs for decades, ever since it was first put on display in 1865. Jurassic Park gave it a big boost by portraying it as a fearsome predator, sort of a gigantic lion. Yet one scientist has been leading a charge that the T-Rex was not a predator at all, but a scavenger. Of course, this isn't a very popular view, but he's looking more and more right over time. For example, a recent computer modeling experiment seems to show that, because of its weight distribution and its leg strength, the T-Rex couldn't run more than 25 mph, and would take 2 to 3 seconds to make a sudden turn. In other words, I could outrun the T-Rex, much less a stegosaurus.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Freakin' Sweet: Iron Man Trailer

I had my doubts about the new Iron Man movie, especially when I heard Tom Cruise was attached. Well, Cruise is gone, replaced by Robert Downey Jr. And the trailer is out. And it's freakin' sweet.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Call Centered: Spelling "B"

The following is from an actual conversation between me (a call center representative) and a very elderly and grumpy caller. All names have been changed to protect the irritating:

ME: Yes, sir, the copay on that medication is more expensive. There's another medication called Birolax...
GRUMPY: I can't understand you. You don't speak English.
ME: [pause] Sir, I'm 34 years old, I've been speaking English all my life.
GRUMPY: Well, I can't understand you. What's the name of that medication?
ME: It's "B" like Bravo, "I" like India, "R" like Romeo...
GRUMPY: No, don't spell it out. Just say the letters.
ME: Okay. B-I-R...
ME: B...I...R...
GRUMPY: I can't understand you.
ME: "B."
ME: "B" like Bravo.
GRUMPY: Don't spell it out, just say it.
ME: Okay. "B."
ME: "B!"
GRUMPY: [pause] What?
ME: [screaming] "B!!!!"
ME: [pause] Sir, I don't know how I can say the letter "B" any clearer. It's "B" like Brave or Boy.
GRUMPY: Oh, "B." Okay.
ME: [continues to spell out the medication with no problem and ends call]
CUBICLE NEIGHBOR WHO OVERHEARD THE CALL: You should have said "B" like "Butt-head."

Friday, October 12, 2007

Jokebook: Homeward Bound

This guy's wife gets a cat and he hates it. So one day, while his wife is gone to work, the guy puts the cat in the back seat of the car, drives a few blocks, and lets the cat out. When he gets home, the cat's sitting there on the front porch.

So the next day, the guy waits until his wife leaves for work again, then throws the cat in the car, drives a mile away from the house, and tosses the cat out. When he gets home, the cat's sitting there again on the front porch.

Well, the guy's furious. So he waits until the next day, then throws the cat in the car, and drives as far and fast as he can, making all the turns and doubling back he can to throw off the cat. He dumps out the cat and heads home, but realizes he can't figure out where he is.

So that afternoon, his wife comes home and answers the ringing phone. It's her husband. He asks, "Is the cat there?"

She says, "Yes."

The guy says, "I'm lost. Put the cat on the phone."

Related posts:
* Jokebook: Police Phobia
* Jokebook: Vow of Silence

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Celery and Panties: The Artwork of Art Frahm

What do celery and ladies' underwear have in common? No, it's not a joke, at least not technically. It seems that back in the 50's, there was an artist named Art Frahm who painted cheesecake photos of women who had their panties suddenly falling down their legs in public. And all the paintings featured women carrying groceries with celery sticking out of it. Truly a bizarre fetish, one that is completely unrealistic. There's a website called the Institute of Official Cheer that analyzes his work and how bad it really was, very funny stuff. Makes you wonder how much of this stuff would hold up to that kind of scrutiny.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Ancient Chinese Secret: China vs Rainclouds

The Chinese aren't content with suppression of freedom of speech and democracy. They even want to suppress the weather. It was recently revealed that they have a plan to try to change the weather for the 2008 Olympics. If it looks like rain, the Chinese are testing equipment to disperse the rainclouds. To me, it seems somewhat sinister that they are so dedicated to the Olympics going perfectly that they even want to alter the weather. I don't know. Maybe it will work, but there's something strange about going to all that trouble over clouds. Wouldn't it be cheaper and easier to just use a tent and issue umbrellas?