Footwear, Navigation, Packaging, Agriculture, Monarchy, Sea Temperatures, Porcine Aviation

The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of many things. Random ones.
  • I don't always agree with her—indeed almost never on economics—but I am fond of reading Ann Coulter. She's a lot different than the media tells you she is (most of the mean stuff? Yeah, satire, glad you picked that up). And the fact she's a Daddy's Little Girl warms my black heart.

    But one thing I noticed a while back is, her tone is exactly like the narrative tone in the Slayers novels. Which is weird. On the other hand, though, where do you think Lina stands on the capital gains tax?

  • Conservatives often call the somewhat ritualistic outrage the leftist media often express, the "kabuki theater".

    Wouldn't it be awesome if it was, though? Chris Matthews cutting a genroku mie, and rolling his head on his shoulders rhythmically as he intones, "This time Ann Coulter has gone too far-uh!" And then Keith Olbermann hits one of those little drums, and gives a howl? And then Rachel Maddow cuts in with a "Shibaraku!" and recounts what she was doing in the previous act, before summing up with something decisive. It'd be awesome.

  • So I decided to change it so now, none of the human ships in my SF books land. Ever. They just send down landers. It didn't take much doing, and it made my book awesome, by firming up the science at no narrative cost.

    By the way, boy, it sure is hard to write fresh bereavement. Just putting that out there.

  • It occurs to me, how come people who always complain the media misrepresents them, don't realize it might misrepresent other things? Tycho Brahe knows the media lies about gamers, but seems to take its word on Ann Coulter; conservatives know it lies about them, but take its word on gamers and Catholics; Catholics know it lies about the history and teaching of their religion but take its word about politics. Hey, idiots (yes, even Tycho, though only here): think for your damn selves!

  • And yes, Tycho is only an idiot here. Lemme put it this way. I used to brag about my intelligence by telling people my IQ is in the 96th percentile (because it is). Now I just tell them I know when he uses a word wrong. Should these words reach him: sir, take that in the spirit it's intended. You're the bar, man!

  • I think a part of why he always seems so smart is, he never went to college, so he never got into the habit of spewing up his professors' nonsense in lieu of thinking for himself. 'Cause nearly everyone else who comments on geek-pop, if that be not a contradiction, like Overthinking It or FerretBrain, just does it from the part-feminist, part-multiculti, quasi-Marxist PoMo perspective of the academies. Only Tycho is not content merely to vomit the viscous oils of bad theories all over his subject, like a startled albatross drenching an assailant in gut oil. And as with the gut oil, ideas that get PoMo theories on them lose their waterproofing, and sink to the bottom of the sea.

  • Gut oil, by the way, is really gross, but its existence is useful should you happen to wonder if there are alternatives to milk for aliens. My aliens' "milk" comes from chest-located glands, but they're modifed oil glands rather than sweat glands, and it turns solid at room temperature. They use domestic animals' milk, just like we do, but they consume it by the slice instead of by the cup.


    Other options are crop milk, like flamingos and pigeons have, and honey-ant type things. One of my other races has the coat fall out, on the mothers' necks, and globes of translucent stuff, high in sugar, fat, and protein, form from the oil-glands there, for their babies to lick it off.

  • It occurs to me, the big flaw in Avatar, or at least with the Na'vi, is, "Their culture would not be anything like any earth culture, since they've got their tentacle-hentai link to every other lifeform on the planet." If you don't understand why a species that starts out being de facto "Post-Scarcity", would not be anything like any human culture (let alone a human hunter-gatherer culture whose chief economic activity is subsistence), guess what, you fail every social science there is, forever. In fact we're gonna shred your SATs now; security will be by shortly to escort you off campus.

  • So how come, in the first Halo, Cortana speaks British English, but with an American accent—"fancy a look", "chums", "sod off", etc.? It's weird, is what it is.

  • It occured to me, Catholicism in America was long dominated by a certain type of Frenchman, and the Irish, rather than by any of the many other Catholic peoples who came to this country. Why? Well, couple reasons, many of them linguistic, but one I see mentioned too seldom is, Jansenism. For those who don't know, it's basically Catholic Puritanism, and it's borderline heretical. But it was strong in Ireland and parts of France—Pascal was one—and I can't help but wonder if it, being similar to the Puritanism of the Northeastern cities a lot of the new immigrants came to, didn't ease their transition. But it made it easy to paint Catholicism as another species of Puritanism, which it's not.

    Know what real Catholicism looks like? Look at Bavarian- or Cajun-Americans. Not a whole lot like the Puritans, oué?


N. Trandem said...

If you get the chance, look up the history of the Catholic Central Verein and the struggles my German-American Catholic ancestors had with Archbishop Ireland in St. Paul. There was a vibrant and strong counter-movement against the Americanist/Jansenist Bishops up until the First World War.

penny farthing said...

That's awesome! I'll have to check that out.

By the way, gut oil - best. analogy. ever. And ew.