Archive for August, 2006

The Sunday Review: My Neighbour Totoro

Sunday 27 August (2006)

my neighbour totoro

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Questioning 9/11

Friday 25 August (2006)

Not many people who remember the eleventh of September 2001 will ever forget it. For me, it was my day off from college, and I went downstairs for some breakfast to find that the news was on every channel. At this point only one plane had crashed into the World Trade Centre, and the general and conservative estimate on the BBC was that this was a terrible, terrible accident. Shortly after this, the second plane hit, and the rest is history.

But right from the start, there were people who said that this thing looked a little… off. Those two towers – whilst very tall indeed – are still a mighty small target for a commercial jet to deadeye. That it happened twice was one thing, but further north another plane had slammed into the Pentagon. This being one of the most important buildings in American defense, it’s highly likely that there were multiple cameras situated all around that would have caught the impact of this plane – but all that has ever been released, even five years on, are five frames of footage showing one large explosion and no trace of an airplane. A similar situation happened with Flight 93 in Pennsylvania – the world was shown an impact crater and some pieces of the fuselage, but it still didn’t look like a passenger jet had crashed into that field. And there was more than one cry of ‘controlled demolition’ when the three buildings of the World Trade Centre collapsed without damaging any of the other buildings around them.

But, everything seemed to be explained fairly adequately. It was the jet fuel running down the elevator shafts at incredible temperatures that caused the towers to collapse. WTC 7 collapsed due to falling debris from the two main towers. And the planes that crashed in DC and Pennsylvania impacted so ferociously that they actually vaporised.

Personally, I’m undecided. I tend to agree with Occam’s Razor; that the simplest explanation is generally the right one, and sure it kind of makes more sense that the towers collapsed because of a planned implosion, but really, what the fuck do I know about architecture and jet fuel? I can only work with the information that’s given to me, and there has yet to be a fair documentary about this subject. There are dozens of pro-conspiracy and anti-conspiracy documentaries, but they only ever offer evidence supporting their own theories, so you end up with some experts saying it’s definately a conspiracy and others saying there’s no way it could be a conspiracy. So, I’ve just avoided the whole field. The planes crashed, the towers collapsed, thousands of people died, it was a terrible tragedy that led to several military actions and further loss of life… it’s all in the past, so what can you do about it.

But still, it won’t go away. This is potentially the biggest cover-up going, and no-one seems able to blow it open. That’s why when I read a magazine article about an Internet documentary called Loose Change, I knew I had to watch it.

Now, the film itself has been around since mid-2005, so you may have seen it before. It’s currently on its second version online, and a third version is being geared up for a theatrical release too. Made by a 22 year old called Dylan Avery, the documentary isn’t much different from other pro-conspiracy documentaries – there’s only evidence here which supports that stance – but what it does do very well indeed is highlight the inaccuracies in the official story. You’ll see comparisons with planned building demolitions; other plane crashes across the world which haven’t ‘vaporised,’ and other interesting facts that you may not be aware of, like the fact that the passengers of Flight 93 couldn’t possibly have used their cellphones to contact people on the ground.

So watch Loose Change today, and see what you think – he presents a compelling argument. Even if you don’t want to watch it, skip to the last ten minutes because there’s a fascinating clip of two FOX News anchors tearing some poor bastard to shreds because he wants to teach a course in Islamic traditions at the school where he works. When they find out that he doesn’t believe the official explanation for 9/11, just watch them lay into him… bloody FOX News.

A post about grass

Monday 21 August (2006)

 some people like to smoke a spliff before bed

I guess it’s safe to say that the most common recreational illegal drug in use in the world today is grass – cannabis, marijuana, sweet mary jane. But, with my propensity for consuming psychoactive substances of almost any variety in study of the psychedelic realms, it might come as a slight surprise to you that I don’t really smoke a lot of grass. In fact, I hardly ever do – sure, if I’m at a party and a joint is going round I’ll not turn it down, and when I lived in Manchester I got high more than once with my friends, but I’ve never really yearned for it or anything. This is the real ‘I’m not into grass’ clincher for me though; I’ve never actually paid for any.

The thing is, grass makes you high, and in my experience it is a fun but ultimately pointless high. It has made me laugh uncontrollably at things which really aren’t that funny, and that is basically it. It’s a mellow trip – you don’t need to set aside two days before you consume it, and there’s generally no hangover. It’s just that, well – I don’t see the point. As I’ve said if someone offers me some, I’ll probably not turn it down, but being as it’s illegal (and thus blackmarket and without quality control) it becomes more of a pain in the ass than anything else. Sure, it’s very easy to find (I challenge one person who reads this to tell me they don’t know someone, however vaguely, who could get them some) but so is alcohol, and if you buy quality drinks that you actually think taste nice (as opposed to the cheapest/strongest in an attempt to get drunk) then it will put you in a very agreeable mood. I guess this is all personally speaking, but to me a good wine, or rum, or beer, and the right setting (good friends and good music) is a comparable and equally enjoyable high as getting stoned is, and without having to smoke anything, which is always a bummer. The only real difference is the laughter that grass brings, and I’m not overly convinced that tricking your body into laughing at something which isn’t really funny is a good thing anyway.

However, I am now going to about face and eat my words.

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The Sunday Review: Spirited Away

Sunday 20 August (2006)

spirited away

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Back in business, baby (and how)

Thursday 17 August (2006)

site traffic, small version for glorious post

What you are seeing is a minimised representation of my site traffic over the last thirty days. I like this graph that wordpress produce for me, but I don’t like the fact that the scale jumps up if you have a scary day of intense traffic – what I mean is; if I average forty hits a day and then I suddenly get eighty for whatever reason (usually misguided search engine returns) the scale goes up in such a way that it looks like my constant forty hits a day are, well, nothing. Well, it has happened here – I looked at this graph and saw how low it was and I thought ‘well, hell, I haven’t updated for three weeks because I’ve not been connected to the internet – this is fair enough.’

Then I looked at the scale. What the creeping hell?! Whilst one-hundred and fifty or so unique hits a day are mere trifles in the scheme of things, this is a bloody lot for me. It’s historic! I mean I’m reaching an audience! Hell, the director of Sharp’s Brewery has been here personally because I reviewed one of their beers! I’m basically kind of an Internet legend, in my own time.

Except, no. Not really. There is but one reason why my site has suddenly become the hub of the internet, and that is because I recently posted a long rant about that most dastardly of TV shows; The Mint. People have been finding my site out of a combination of trying to find solutions to the puzzles (and why shouldn’t they) and trying to find out if the whole thing is legally some sort of con. Well, I love you people – thank you. Because it’s good to know, in my heart, that if one lone idiot with a computer like me can lament the loss of quality television, no matter how insignificant I am people will seek it out and rally around me. Together we can beat the bastards!

Or, as it happens, not. I’m tempted though, if anyone comes across the solution to their puzzles, to make a page about it and see if I can figure out how they got the solution. We’ll see, I guess. Anyway, this post is just to say I’m back, etc., so expect more quality content soon! Or, failing that, another post about my visitor statistics complaining about they have dropped back to a more realistic seventeen hits a day. Bah.