Monday, August 25, 2008

Unclear On The Concept

The problem: Hillary's supporters are not warming up to Obama.

From CQ Politics: "Democratic congressional leaders said Sunday they would settle for nothing less than enthusiastic, unambiguous rhetoric from Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and former President Bill Clinton encouraging their supporters to rally to Barack Obama ’s presidential candidacy and quell talk of party disunity... Top Democrats say it’s unthinkable that the Clintons won’t appear to fully on board behind the ticket during this week’s convention and into the fall. But they are offering thinly veiled warnings about fealty nonetheless. The House majority whip, James E. Clyburn of South Carolina, said that in their speeches the Clintons have to “really demonstrate to this party and the American people where they are with Obama’s candidacy.’’

The solution: More insults, of course.

From Clusterfuck: "...a flock of disgruntled harpies has landed in Denver to advance Mrs. Clinton's claims at all cost... Meanwhile, reports coming out of Denver that Hillary's Harpies say they would rather vote for John McCain than Barack Obama simply boggle the mind. How fucking crazy are these women? And what have they made of their movement to advance political equality -- a mere campaign of revenge? Is that what their country needs right now?"

Whipping and beatings will continue until morale improves

Thursday, August 21, 2008

La Rubrique "N'importe Quoi"

Le pire, c'est qu'il y a une faute d'orthographe à "Utiliseés".  

Explication: en anglais, un caban, c'est un "pea jacket", mais pour un francophone, un "pea", une pie, same shit.

No Respect At All

Ce midi, je suis allée acheter des rouges à lèvres à Pharmaprix, où j'ai été servie par un jeune homme tout mignon, très aimable. On va ensemble à la caisse, je paye et il me dit: "J'aurai quelques échantillons à vous donner" et il me tend un petit sachet de crème antirides. Je prends le sachet, remercie le vendeur et me prépare à partir, mais il me retient : "Non, attendez, prenez-en encore!" et il me tend une poignée de sachets. Me retenant de rire, je m'exclame à très haute voix : "Espèce de goujat! Je veux parler à votre superviseur!!" Le pauvre vendeur est devenu tout rouge et bafouille, les yeux écarquillés : "Euh, non, madame, ce n'est pas ce que je veux dire...heuh...pas du tout..." Je lui tourne le dos et m'en vais rapidement pour ne pas éclater de rire.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Knighthood of Sir Nils Olav, aka The Black Knight (Motto: "It's only a flesh wound")

(From the BBC News :

A penguin who was previously made a Colonel-in-Chief of the Norwegian Army has been knighted at Edinburgh Zoo.  Penguin Nils Olav has been an honorary member and mascot of the Norwegian King's Guard since 1972. Over the years, he has been promoted through the ranks after being adopted by Royal Guard who visited the zoo. During the ceremony, Nils had a sword dubbed on each side of his head, where his shoulders should be, to confirm his regimental knighthood. 

A crowd of several hundred people joined the 130 guardsmen at the zoo. A citation from King Harald the Fifth of Norway was read out, which described Nils as a penguin "in every way qualified to receive the honour and dignity of knighthood". 

The guardsmen come to see Nils every few years while they are in Edinburgh performing at the city's Military Tattoo. The proud penguin was on his best behaviour throughout most of the ceremony, but shortly before the ritual was concluded and possibly suffering a bout of nerves he was seen to deposit a discreet white puddle on the ground. 

Drawing a polite veil over that, Darren McGarry, animal collection manager at the zoo, said afterwards: "It went extremely well and we are delighted that the Norwegian Guard honoured Nils Olav with a knighthood. "We all enjoyed the occasion and Nils was a perfect penguin throughout." British Major General Euan Loudon officiated at the ceremony. 

Mr McGarry, added: "Nils always recognises the Norwegian guardsmen when they come to visit him.  "He loves the attention he receives at the ceremony and takes his time inspecting the troops." Nils has also received medals for long service and had a 4ft bronze statue built in his honour. 

Guardsman Captain Rune Wiik said: "We are extremely proud of Nils Olav and pleased that an enduring part of the Royal Guard is resident in Scotland helping to further strengthen ties between our two countries." 

However, the penguin honoured on Friday is unfortunately not the original Nils Olav. He died in the 1980s and was replaced by a two-year-old penguin at the Zoo. Norway presented the zoo with its first king penguin in 1913, the year of its opening. 

David Windmill, chief executive of the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, the charity that owns Edinburgh Zoo, said: "We have a long-standing history with the Norwegian King's Guard and it is something we are extremely proud of."

Mother-Children Love Transcends Time

(Via Pharyngula:

From the National Geographic Site:

Paleontologist Paul Sereno and his team were scouring the rocks between harsh dunefields in northern Niger for dinosaur bones in 2000 when they stumbled across the graveyard, on the shores of a long-gone lake.

Perhaps most incredible was the 2006 discovery the Stone Age Embrace—a Tenerian woman facing the remains of two young children, their arms posed and hands interlaced. Pollen remnants from underneath the skeletons shows the dead had been laid on a bed of flowers. "This is a landmark burial—there's nothing like it in prehistory," Sereno said. 

The scientists eventually uncovered 200 burials of two vastly different cultures that span five thousand years—the first time such a site has been found at a single site.

Called Gobero, the area is a uniquely preserved record of human habitation and burials from the Kiffian (7700 to 6200 B.C.) and the Tenerian (5200 to 2500 B.C.) cultures, says a new study led by Sereno of the University of Chicago.

The "watershed" find also offers a new window into how these tribes lived and buried their dead during the extreme Holocene period, when a grassy Sahara dried up in the world's largest desert.

Very cool stuff. Please go read the whole thing... or buy the September issue of National Geographic.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Hindi Salsa

From Sepia Mutiny (

Meet Giju John, 33. Born: Thiruvananthapuram, India. Lives: Silicon Valley. Employer: Intel. He’s an electical engineer who’s got his groove on.

Giju John is back in India right now, on a three month sabbatical. He’s giving his salsa career his all, shooting music videos, performing, and attending … the 3rd annual India International Salsa Congress in Bangalore from the 14th to the 20th of August. Who knew Salsa was so big in India?!

He's Old

It took me a long time but I finally got it: McCain is old, doncha know?

I've been following the US Presidential campaign since the beginning of the primaries. I've read and watched the attacks from both sides in the newspapers, blogs and video clips. We all know that Obama is a slick, flipflopping, race-baiting, inexperienced Muslim while McCain is ... what?.. old? That's the theme of all the attacks against McCain. One blog that I read is WTF Is It Now ( and that's the gist of practically all their posts about him. I keep waiting in vain for the mean stuff to start. We all know John McCain is a despicable disloyal spouse who dropped his first wife to golddiggerly marry a younger richer woman, a sexist old (there's that word again) pig who called his second wife a "cunt" in public, a stupid ignorant fool who knows nothing about politics, geography, economy, computers, etc.. etc. When are the Democratic campaign and the left blogs going to mention all this in their attacks?

It seems like all he's being criticized for is being old. This morning, Paris Hilton issued a reply video making fun of McCain for .. yep, the crime of being old.

And that's when the lightbulb finally clicked on for me. In the US (and probably in all Western countries), it is, if not a crime, at least a sin, to be old. People can make fun of you for being old, and you are supposed to be ashamed of being old. It's not great being an airhead, like Paris Hilton, but it's, like, a hundred times worse to be old.

It was obvious to everyone in North America but me. Because I'm an Oriental, I kept waiting for the insult, and it was right there, in front of my nose. The insult is: You're old, booh!

This reminds me of the time when I first arrived in Montreal and I read on the wall of the metro: "Il est interdit de blasphémer" ; instead of being insulted, I laughed when I heard the local curses: tabernacle, hostie, ciboire, etc... I would probably also laugh if a Haitian witchdoctor threatened me with a voodoo curse.

What I'm trying to say is: People! Go at him with real hurtful insults! Don't just mock him for being old, there's no shame in being old, it's not his fault and you'll be old too (at least, I hope for you that you'll get old). Sheesh! Westerners!