Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Flooble Perplexus. Puzzles and brainteasers galore.
The Mercury Music Prize shortlist has been announced. It includes Irish indie cutie Gemma Hayes' competent debut "Night on my side", Bowie's latest piece of shit "Heathen", Doves' impressive "The Last Broadcast" and my prediction for eventual winner, The Streets' "Original Pirate Material".
An tInneall Mallachtaí - The Curse Engine. Generate curses in Irish.

Tuesday, July 30, 2002

Pop pickers ..Aimee Mann is streaming her new album online until August 27.
The New Conservatism.....just like the Old Communism. The author of this NRA article attempts to appropriate common sense, competence and the sense of self-preservation as characteristics of the Right only. (Via The Plastic Cat). Obviously not all agree that mining accidents are occasions to reflect on the success and benefits that conservative policies bring.
I took delivery on Friday of a couple of albums I ordered from, neither of which I could find in the shops here - Mary Lou Lord's "Live Ctiy Sounds" and Brute's new one "Co-Balt". The former is excellent - I had been meaning for sometime to augment the few MP3s I have of her music with some of her CDs. This one is a recording of her busking live on the streets of Boston; and is basically a set of cover versions of some of the finest songs ever written...Big Star's 'Thirteen', Daniel Johnstons 'Speeding Motorcycle', The Magnetic Fields 'I don't want to get over you', and Richard Thompsons 'Beeswing' amongst other gems by Dylan, Springsteen and MacGowan. It should satisfy my craving for sincere acoustica for another few weeks anyway.

Unfortunately my craving for new works of genius by Vic Chesnutt is still unsatisfied after listening to his latest colaboration with Deadhead jam-band 'Widespread Panic'. Co-Balt has several good songs but the overall production and sound is just so bloody AOR. Of course, Vic's lyrics are predictably wonderful....witness the lyric to the song 'All Kinds' : I can't think of any other song that uses the word 'Pixels' let alone one that describes the condition of a internet porn junkie (a pedophile even?) so efficiently:-

His sad little obsession is a digital impression
Of a darling little girl that he adores
What really toots his whistle is a certain set of pixels
Of a darling little girl that he adores

Monday, July 29, 2002

Wrong again. Kate is the deserved BB3 winner. Lets hope my predictions are better at the Galway Races this week.

Friday, July 26, 2002

Prediction of the day: Alex to win Big Brother tonight.
The Pull-o-meter. I scored 65% :-
"In theory you’ve got it all sorted - what to wear, what to bring and what to say, but its one too many and that’s when the plan falls apart. Your stumbling and dribbling doesn’t always appeal to potential lovers, and beer goggles tend to leave you with a nasty surprise in the morning."
So true, so true....(sometimes)..
Some great homegrown humour. Pat Shortt as Limerick man Johnny Davro recounting his interesting experiences on a radio phone-in. They bear a resemblance to some famous movie plots.

1. The Fugitive - chasin a one armed man and getting oddjobs around Ireland including joining the gardai:- Stream, Download.

2. Jurassic Fota Park - making dinosaurs out of DNa and putting them in Fota Island:- Stream, Download.

3. Stephen King's Misery - where he killed off Garda Sean Horgan in the final book by throwing him off the roof of Semple stadium. Stream, Download
Hilarious unknown band photos.

Thursday, July 25, 2002

A Palestinian computer game. Via Talg.
This is a piece about a guy paid to watch telly. Sounds like the perfect job? Well unfortunately for him the program he has to watch is Big Brother...12 hours a day non stop - he even has to get a stand-in for toilet breaks in case he misses a tantalising titty shot..
1000 blank white cards Is it fun?
Further to yesterdays post about Astral travel....if your're curious but aren't bothered to buy the book then this page will serve as a useful primer. I'm sorry to say I was into all this stuff when I was 13, aura reading, pendulums, pentangles etc. ...but unlike me there's obviously a lot of folks out there who have never grown out of this shite.
Irish wacko conspiracy theory alert...The Satanic Game Plan: details and evidence of a worldwide Satanic conspiracy involving all the usual suspects - the government, CIA, Nazis, Born Again Christians etc..and responsible for most cases of missing persons in Ireland over the last few years...even the ISPCC is implicated:-
"The Satanic Network infiltrate every organisation ; the press, the Churches, the health Depts, (child welfare), the police , judiciary etc. Is it not curious that the Irish Justice Dept has control over Child Welfare in Ireland? This is a state body which is responsible for many incredible deliberations , including who to prosecute and who not to! ( consider the Mark Nash case , who admitted to the "Cannibal Murders" at GrangeGorman, Dublin,and was never prosecuted) Note the choice of telephone numbers for the Irish Childline Helpline.1800 666 666. The Satanic Network has been long established in the gentry, in the professions and the upper classes in Irish and British society."

Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Tired of the real world problems of relationship bulding? Have you given up on the shallowness and frustration of today's dating scene? Well then, this handy guide to the secrets of Astral Sex Magick may be of interest. Remember "If you are without a regular partner, astral sex can be a safe and rewarding alternative to a physical relationship". Go on give your right hand a rest.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Camarilla Ireland. The Irish branch of some kind of online role playing game thingy...I think. I never heard of it before - for all I know Camarilla could be a hugely popular movement that has just passed me by. After all, it is an international organisation sanctioned by 'White Wolf Inc'. Theres the distinct smell of goth about it all.
Is there a Limerick connection here? (Before you ask, you need to be Irish to understand that one).
As for Sigur Ros it sounds like they could use a project manager. Fuck them anyway - the album is only average and the ridiculous hype that the Galway Arts Festival were lavishing on them was getting on my wick. I mean Jimmy Page was doing the whole bowed guitar thing thirty years ago to much better effect.
The Steve Earle / Tony Fitzpatrick show was disappointing. While Tony and Steve's poetry and stories were interesting it could have used a few more songs from Steve (he only sang six or seven numbers).

Monday, July 22, 2002

In their own words it's a gift of good taste :- One Hundred Albums You Should Remove from Your Collection Immediately as per
Here's an article on ArabNews presenting the case that Osama Bin Laden is dead..
Alan Lomax R.I.P. Without him the we may never have had the music of Leadbelly, Guthrie, Dylan or even Moby's 'Play'.

Friday, July 19, 2002

Japanese punk ascii flash.
Question of the day perhaps...What exactly is a fart?

Thursday, July 18, 2002

Out there..somewhere, there's a niche market for Superhero Porn.
In his own words it's The Best Page In The Universe. There's an awful lot of negative energy there though. Via Cruel. Maybe a little bit of this could redress the balance?
The Lonely Planet guide to Hurling...they reckon it's like "an egg-and-spoon race with a pack of enormous angry stick-wielding roosters charging the leader. The aim is to hurtle a pellet-hard ball called a sliotar into goals using a stick with a paddle at its end (hurley). The players balance the sliotar on their hurley and then run, hit or bounce it forward, sometimes with all limbs attached."

Wednesday, July 17, 2002

Weight loss breakthrough! Of course this is assuming you don't swallow if you're on the receiving end.
Ringtones, Album by Album, for the music of Morrissey and The Smiths. Mine is "Girlfriend in a Coma".
Other news...IRA apologised to it's 'civilian' victims yesterday. A symbolic gesture for sure, but one which is as hollow as the barrel of a homemade mortar while their heavies still engage in 'punishment' beatings and vigilantism and hold a huge stockpile of weapons. Bertie has welcomed the statement. Trimble hasn't.
No surprise; the Lambchop gig was excellent. They played for over two hours, the set mostly consisting of stuff from the new album. As expected it wasn't the full band - only 7 of them but the songs on the latest record can sound pretty stripped down so it didn't appear to matter much. Tony Crow's work on the grand piano deserves particular praise. And the acoustics in the venue served the band's sound wonderfully - I don't think I have ever been at a gig with such a huge dynamic range - moving from phases of soft guitar strokings and almost silent keyboard explorations where even the nervous creak of a pew 20 rows back could be heard, to huge rthymic swathes of guitar (of which there were four), distort effects and piano. And back again in the space between verse and chorus. Highlights included the opening two songs "The Daily Growl" and "The New cobweb Summer", the former taking shape from Tony Crow's exuisite piano prelude as the band padded onto stage; the latter demonstrating the glorious sonic expanse which the band are capable of. Others included the searing "The Butcher Boy", the almost unrecognisable "You Masculine You", the scary rendition of "Caterpillar" and the manic encore of the Sisters of Mercy "This Corrosion". Here's the setlist (not in the exact order):-

- The Daily Growl
- The New Cobweb Summer
- ??mid tempo number I didn't recognise
- My blue Wave
- The Gusher
- Flick
- Your life as a sequel
- The Butcher Boy
- You Maculine You
- Caterpillar
- D Scott Parsley
- The Butcher Boy
- Garth
- Up With People
- Bugs
- Is a Woman
- Autums Vicar
- The Puppy and the Leaf
- This Corrosion

Tuesday, July 16, 2002

Tim and Alex are up for eviction on BB3 this week. My guess is that Timmy will get his wish and be voted out by a huge majority. I for one am looking foward to his exit amidst an inevitable cacophany of booing. I hope he's reduced to tears. Meanwhile the racist bastard is making enemies with his alledged attempt at humour.
Lambchop are playing in St. Nicholas' in Galway tonight and I've got a ticket. If it's anything like their Dublin gig of 2000 then tonight will be special. The new album 'Is a Woman' has proven to be a real grower and is possibly my favourite of the year so far. Here is a good review from Cluas.

Monday, July 15, 2002

Bandwagon jumping time - This is my blogchalk: English, Ireland, Galway, Galway, Male, Music, Movies, Links, General, Opinion, blah .....
The Conch Republic. Their Passports are a tad cheaper than Irish ones.
Multiplayer Online Games Directory - handy.
The good folks at have published the Ansbacher Report in full on the web. For the benefit of those not familiar with Irish current affairs, this is the report on the largest tax evasion scam in the history of the Irish state - many high profile figures in Irish business and politics (including former leader Charlie Haughey) have been implicated in this scandal, avoiding taxes through illegal offshore bank accounts in the Cayman Islands during the 70's and 80s. Official publication of this report on the web was prevented becuse of fears of litigation.
The Flaming Lips new album "Yoshimi battles the Pink Robots" is garnering rave reviews everywhere. It is being streamed online here.
Way hey - I've just won! For a while there I was thinking it couldn't be solved.
Here's a really tough game, although supposedly it is possible to win: Pearls before swine. I haven't figured it out yet though. Via Fimoculous.

Friday, July 12, 2002

Fantastic! Bloggus Caesari - the blog of Julius Caesar. As he says himself, It's a handy way for him to pass on news to his friends in Rome while he's amongst the Barbarians. At the moment it looks like his army is preparing to do battle with some Gauls.
Heres a great post from Angrywhitegirl - the basic formula for creative expletives.
I was sleepwalking again last night after an evening on the beer. At least that's my only explanation for waking up naked in my housemate's bed when I distinctly remember getting into my own bed after I came home. Luckily she wasn't there at the time, but that didn't stop me having a moment of panic while I looked for my jocks in her room this morning. As it happened all my clothes where in my own room exactly where I would normally have left them (i.e. strewn across the floor). I don't remember getting up during the night, opening doors or anything. This is very disturbing. Should I tell my housemate about this? She may not notice that her bed was disturbed so I might get away with it. If I tell her it could freak her out, but if I don't, what excuse will I have if it happens again while she is there?
Pitchfork trashes the new Oasis album.

Thursday, July 11, 2002

Jaysus....A Galway escort agency on the web. If I'm not mistaken this is the first of it's kind in our little city.
Eddie Jordan casts his F1 expert eye over some beautiful bodywork.
Irish farmers are up in arms over the proposed reductions to EU farm subsidies. Perhaps they should explore the potentially lucrative possibilities of exporting by-products to foreign markets. There could be money in shit if this CNN story is anything to go by.
Okay I'm probably a little old to need an Au pair to mind me, but if
I could have one I'd pick Gina. I'm well impressed with her resume - she was Miss Norway in 1998.

Wednesday, July 10, 2002

Things you find on ebay...
Collaboratively creating a dirty dirty language that helps you pay for sex :- Whorechalking
I just bought tickets for this show. I'm a fan of Steve Earle's music so I just hope there's more music than poetry reciting at this. Sill the Tony Fitzpatrick dude sounds interesting - somewhat of a maverick artist/poet by all accounts, and the show seems to have received good reviews in Chicago.

Tuesday, July 09, 2002

This is bound to send the Big Brother ratings plummeting. Now if it was Kate.....hmmm.
The 14th Galway Film Fleadh starts today. It seems to have a bit of a Bollywood flavour this year. I might try to catch Mullholland drive tomorrow. Apart from that and a few of the Spanish films there isn't a lot on the program that interests me. Which is good cos' I don't have much free time this week.
Here's an excellent blog on Northern Irish politics and culture:- Letter to Slugger O'Toole
Getting back to 'Minority Report' again; the critics' opinion seems to be quite divided on it. That pretty much matches the views of my friends who have seen it. Everyone agrees it's watchable and entertaining in parts. However some think it's awesome while others (me included) think that Spielberg has missed an opportunity to create a philosophically provocative and perceptive vision of the future.
How to be a right wing pundit in 12 easy lessons. Via Fark.

Monday, July 08, 2002

This kind of mix-up was bound to happen sooner or later: White IVF couple 'have black twins'.
Why would you even drink this pisswater let alone photograph it with an electron microscope?
Via email:-

Panic gripped the streets of Galway this afternoon when patches of sky
took on a blue colour and a ball of fire appeared above the city.

The Lord Mayor urged people to be calm and return to work as normal
instead of stripping off their hats, scarves and jackets and heading
to a beer garden for the afternoon. "We've seen this sort of thing
before", he said, "but it never lasts."

There are forecasts that this phenomenon, commonly found in
mediterranean countries and known as the "sun" could be seen
throughout the weekend but a spokesman for the Met Office said "I
wouldn't hold my breath".
Here's a cute little teddy for you.

Friday, July 05, 2002

Why Minority Report is a disappointment:

-It’s too long. Just when it should be ending, it starts again. It feels like it has a seven act structure when it could be done in three.
-It features too many cutsey, touchy feely Spielbergisms. Fake family scenes, cartoon baddies, get an obvious laugh type stuff (whats with the eyeball rolling scene – where’s the optic nerves?)
-Stylistically it’s not sure if it wants to be Gattaca, Blade Runner or maybe the Sixth Sense; they’ve saved money by using the sets left over from the last few Dreamworks productions.
-Ultimately, like A.I. it takes a fascinating idea, puts it through the Spielberg blender, changes the gray to black, whitens the white and turns out feel good, moral majority pleasing, entertainment lite.

On the plus side, the first 45 mins is pretty good and Colin Farrell puts in a cool performance. Also, the futuristic Washington traffic system is one of the more original things I seen since the suction tube transporters in Futurama (maybe).
I think I've watched more of Wimbledon this year than I have at any time since Borg and McEnroe were champions - mind you that wouldn't be difficult as I had long ago given up any semblance of an interest in the game on the premise that life was indeed too short. But this week, with time on my hands and the worst summer weather in Ireland since 1985 putting paid to my tentative plans to dig the garden, I’ve managed to catch maybe all of three complete sets of the game. Two of those sets involved each of the players who together constitute one of the sporting phenomena of our age –the Williams sisters of course. Yesterday morning Venus was ranked World No. 1 with Serena ranked as No.2. Today, the order is reversed with Serena ranked as No.1 and both are set to face each other in the Wimbledon Ladies final. It’s an incredible achievement for two African-American sisters from a rundown area of LA with no tradition of tennis in their family or community, coached by their father who learnt everything he knows about the game from tennis books. I think it’s a great story. Yes, there is some controversy around them of course; but there always is around non-establishment figures who come to dominate their sport. For now the question is who to support tomorrow. I’ll be rooting for the blonde.

Thursday, July 04, 2002

Martin Ferris, Sinn Fein TD (member of parliment non-Irish heads) for Kerry North has been allocated the Agriculture and Marine portfolio in Sinn Fein's shadow cabinet. Ironic considering his experience of the marine sector comes mostly from his days as a gun runner (bit of a theme today - ref. Roger Casement below).
Here's another Irish blog: - Fluff. From Cork I think.
Give your car balls.
One of the enduring depates in Irish history is over the authenticity of the 'Black Diaries' of Roger Casement - the Irish patriot executed by the English as a traitor in 1916. These diaries were circulated during Casement's trial in order to implicate him in profligate homosexual behaviour and dissuade influential people from speaking out against his execution. The 1910 black diary is available online; mostly featuring entries from Casement's trip to the Amazon basin, it makes for an interesting read.

Wednesday, July 03, 2002

Predatory Snakehead Fish Found in Maryland Pond. Now thats what I call a headline.

Tuesday, July 02, 2002

The Big Brother housemates are like dogs in a pound according to Dr. Desmond Morris' analogy.
A blog about breasts.... also includes handy sex tips for big breasted ladies and advice to men on how to properly handle tits... and yes it was written by a woman so it's serious.
I've just noticed that Memepool coincidentally has a posting on the Beale papers from last Friday.
More cyptography via Singh's book - there's $30 million in hidden gold and silver somewhere in Virginia for anyone who can solve the encryption of the Beale Ciphers. They happen to be oldest unsolved codes in US history. Maybe they're a hoax, maybe not; it's a fascinating story nevertheless.

Monday, July 01, 2002

In spite of the contestants being the dullest of the dull, Big Brother can still throw up some entertainment - for the second week running I was delighted to see Tim's plans foiled, and it's particularily ironic that he finds himself isolated on the rich side of the house this week.
Good to see that Scott of "the Date Project" has found a girlfriend. Nothing to do with the project though - his friend set up the introduction.
Simon Singh's "The Code Book" had been languishing untouched and unread on my bookshelf for a year. Yesterday I decided that I now had the time and the motivation to finally read it. And what a fascinating read it is too. Reading the first chapter this morning about the part that cryptoanalysis played in the trial and execution of Mary Queen of Scots, it occured to me that the events of the Tudor era may arguably have been the most significant of the last 2000 years in shaping modern Britain. Can we say that the rise and success of Protestantism in Britain was primarily driven by the desire of one man (Henry VIII) to engage in personal and political behaviour unfettered by the mores of the Catholic establishment in Rome? I must track down a good biography of Henry VIII and do some more reading around this period in history.
Posting will be a bit sporadic this week as I've taken the week off to chill out (and do a bit of painting and gardening) so my access to the web is more limited than usual.