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Blog Comments posted by caldrail

  1. UNRVer Bloggists need love? Personally, I think I need wild passionate sex. Instead of an Amazon kindle, how about a blonde amazon (preferably with both mammary glands still attached)?




    Actually in all seriousness I don't think blogs should be made competitive. Do I need to be rewarded for my blogging? I guess many would say I need to be locked in jail for some of the things I've written. Blogs are after all a personal diary of one sort or another and my own feelings are that they should be allowed to remain so.

  2. That's the problem with being a trend setter, Mr Ghost. Everyone thinks you're mad until someone decides you're a genius, after which everyone does exactly the same and everyone thinks you're a boring copy-cat. Trouble is, not only would buying a kebab involve a hazardous crossing oif the roadworks, but the sheer cutting edge no-holds-barred test of society's boundaries would probably involve a very stern piece of advice from an irate librarian. Trust me on this, that's like poking a stick at a herd of hippo's.

  3. You're not wrong. I was watching the extended six o'clock news on Channel 4 as they visited various areas absolutely demolished by flood water, getting hauled away at onbe point by japanese rescue workers because another tsunami warning was in place following aftershocks.


    I think the saddest sight was a car left abandoned at an odd angle randomly among all the others swept away by the wave. Apparently the occupants had perished because the airbags had inflated and prevented themn getting out of the car when it was immersed.


    That said, I'm impressed by the stoic resolve of the japanese to get through this. Understated but inspiring nonetheless.

  4. The remarkable thing is how passionate some of these people are about thier adopted concepts of unwritten history. In most cases it's based on ignorance and perceptual misinterpretation, partly by the insidious nature of manipulative cultists and authors, partly by a psychological need to find something unique to believe in that sets them apart from the herd, or perhaps gives them some sort of status as a knowlegable person in that they know 'the truth'.


    By the way, how is Elvis these days?

  5. Hi Doc. Glad to see you've un-topsied your private life. As to letting people down, some people do find that easy. It's about their selfishness or respect for for others. Then again, sometimes our own expectations are unrealistic. We sometimes assume things are going great, only to discover how wrong we were. That's the risk you take.


    Good grief, I'm getting all serious and philosophical. Talking about commitment is all very well, but the lesson, I think, is to enjoy things for what they are. Our self worth should based on self-respect and personal goals, not the comfort of a carefully constructed world around you. Castles built on sand? Plenty of people do that.


    Right, that's enough seriousness. Somewhere, in this wild and woolly town, someone is doing something incredibly stupid and I want to be there to report on it. I lead such a simple life :D

  6. The message I picked up from that program was the widening gap between those that understand science and practice it's strange dark rituals, and the public who are largely ignorant and form protest groups at the sheer mention of anything scientific going on.


    In other words, it's a modern manifestation of superstition. The public get it into their heads that something potentially evil is going on and head straight there in a ugly crowd holding burning torches ready to set these works of the bad guys alight.


    Funny really. Mary Shelley had the subject pretty well covered a century and a half ago. You could argue her misguided scientist was acting beyond approval, whereas moden scientists are regulated by governments to avoid inflicting the public with square headed inarticulate zombies, but once the public get suspicious and smell a rat....

  7. North Africa was a declining region on a longer scale. The encroachment of desert has been going on for thousands of years as rainfall patterns atrophied, and in any case, the prosperity of the Romans did the region no favours at all, since their predations and over-use of resources had implications for their future (and ours, as it turns out).


    After all, the north african region was the most heavily urbanised area of the Roman Empire, and with such a population to support, the increasingly arid conditions would have eventually spelled doom had not the germanic tribes found the region full of babies to impale.


    That said, the economic decline that surely must have followed the end of the organised Roman regime (and the decline of its needs as a consumer) meant the long term survival of large scale urbanisation was not good.


    However, what is true is the pressure that climatic changes can force upon human behaviour, such as the westward expansion of the Huns, driven to migrate aggressively by increasingly arid conditions in their own ranges, or the social changes of early human colonisers of Britain at the end of the last ice age 10,000 years ago, when melting ice flooded Doggerland and forced tribes to find new ways of surviving.


    I've also read that Krakatoa, on the other side of the world, may have influenced european events by causing temporary climate change after a volcanic explosion in late imperial times.


    One point that is also relevant to us in the modern age is that human beings tend toward specialisation like any other animal. We get used to doing things a certain way, finding food and water from certain sources, and in civilised socieities, increasingly reliant on infrastructure. Look how the Minoan empire evaporated overnight when sea commerce was destroyed by the Santorini Tsunami.

  8. The problem here then is what we define as woolly thinking. Whilst I don't necessarily argue with his pronouncements on things astronomical, I find do find him hopelessly messianic about his presentation. Partly we must blame the producers of the television shows he appears on for that particular style. You obviously like his presentation. I think he sounds like a lay-preacher.


    As for knocking the BBC, why shouldn't I? I don't have any choice but to pay for it, so the least they could do is show more Top Gear.

  9. Sometimes we see US versions of tv shows over here and the difference is entirely one of stlye. The presenters are always, and I mean always, very clever with one liners and gags but really don't grab your attention other than creating a steady background commentary.


    As you say, they lack any real character, comiong across as very one dimensional, although inevitably the ladies are pretty and one did catch my eye as having a spark of personality beyond that expected of american media. She came across as willing to entertain but hopelessly restricted by the expectations of the shows producer. She was allowed only one sentence before the camera returned to the main duo whose comedy routine struggled to raise any laughs.


    The other thing I notice is the undercurrent of scorn for contestants on shows. Now I don't suppose for a minute these good citizens are unaware they're going to be made fools of, but to me the attitude is you've signed up to be laughed at. Once you get past the surface level, the odd titter, there's little respect for the common person. Is that a feature of society, or simply a means of making the characterless presenters more vivid to the audience?

  10. One man's joy is another man's pain, as the saying goes. I must admit, any hint of a christmas song and I reach for the 'off' button. Most of these works are excrutiatingly awful and foisted upon us every year for two months of back-toback repitition. Gaah!


    It's like people are brainwashed to have fun at the first note of their well loved classic christmas ditty. One hint of Noddy Holder singing "So here we are..." and everyone sings along. Why? He couldn't sing either.


    It really is ritual behaviour, a side effect of our recorded music culture, and anyone claiming to be spontaneous whilst being triggered by popular music is seriously in need of a life. Does that make me a killjoy? All I see are people behaving like robots every year. What's fun about that?


    Am I sounding a little fed up with all this crass commercialisation of christmas? Bah! Humbug!