Saturday, April 30, 2005

Hey, anyone want to lend me lots and lots of money to buy these? I think they'd sound good in my Aria Pro II TS-300 Thor Sound. Now, if you're not familiar with guitars that auction might seem crazy, and frankly I don't disagree. But consider how much you'd have to pay to buy certain guitars equipped with those pickups, like this one. Makes them seen fairly cheap.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

From the Silly Redundancy department: I was watching CNN Headline News this afternoon for a few minutes, and it featured coverage of an Atlanta bride to be who has disappeared. The segment ended with a comment about the wedding being postponed. I don't know about you, but I've never heard of a wedding in absentia.

Is there some requirement that franchisees of the Denny's Restaurant chain must be idiots? A group of Arab American men are suing after they were told "We don't serve Bin Ladens here," and made to leave a Florida Denny's in January 2004. Denny's were sued in the early '90s after black customers complained of mistreatment.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

I've been quite enjoying the new Doctor Who. And in last night's episode I was pleasantly surprised to see them acknowledge more of the Doctor's past when UNIT of all things turned up. The United Nations Intelligence Taskforce was a part of a number of the late '60s and '70s Doctor adventures. It was also amusing to hear the Doctor's seemingly off hand comment to Rose about how they wouldn't recognise him because he's changed a lot since they last worked together. Rose is sure to be quite surprised when she finds out the whole meaning of that comment!

I must admit I've actually seen very little of the original Doctor Who. I caught some of the early episodes when Space: The Imagination Station played it(their run with the series proved a disaster, but that's another story), and took a couple of the '70s stories out from the library on VHS a few years ago. I've also seen one of the '60s Doctor Who movies, but those are sort of an "alternate universe" version of the character. But I'm familiar enough with the series that stuff like the above makes me smile.

Interestingly the sequence last night where the Slitheen shed their disguises reminded me a lot of the first season of the old syndicated War of the Worlds tv series, which featured a number of scenes of the 3 fingered green hands of the aliens popping out of someone's chest. Of course a little bit of thinking might turn up things in War of the Worlds that may have been lifted from Doctor Who.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

The Atkins Diet fad seems to have died down a bit lately, but its influence can easily be seen on things like food packaging. I bot a package of Breath Savers candy today, and it includes "Nutrition Facts" on the packaging, including how many carbs it has. Personally I think you'd be pretty obsessive if you kept track of the carbs in a breath mint.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Hello to anyone passing through from Landis, Saskatchewan, location of my latest Where's Willy hit. Can't say I've ever been there, but at least my money has.

Not much over the last couple of days to inspire a post. I did spend a bit of time today looking at the lineup of the upcoming SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival. I'm thinking about going to see the Dave Holland Quintet. 30 bucks ain't cheap, but the price of everybody's tickets seems to be going up these days.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Some good news for Rush fans today. Guitarist Alex Lifeson will not be going to jail over a 2003 scuffle with Florida police. Given how long this whole thing had been dragging on I suspected an outcome along these lines a good while ago.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

It seems that Russia is joining North America and Western Europe as the home of stupid lawsuits. A Russian astrologist is suing NASA over their upcoming comet impact mission because of the supposed astrological damage it could cause. Hmmm, I wonder if I could sue this twit for potential future eye problems that rolling my eyes about her stupidity might cause.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Just how stupid are Neonazis anyways? I occasionally get spam by some American outfit called The New Order. Tonight's message read:

"When You Go With Hitler, You Are Never Alone

You Don't Need a Cell Phone . . .


The religious tone of this is bizarre enough. But accompanying it was a picture of an old WW2 propaganda poster. An American poster designed to encourage people not to waste gas, with an image of a man driving a car with a spectral image of old Adolph sitting beside him and the slogan "When you ride alone, you ride with Hitler!" For some reason I suspect that the idiots at the New Order didn't get the point.

BTW, if anyone from the New Order should read this, do us, and yourself, a favour. Go eat a bullet or two from that swastika marked Luger on your bookshelf.
An ad I saw tonight had me shaking my head. It was for Mattel's Tinkle Time Kelly doll. You give the doll a drink from its special cup, then squeeze its stomach and it "goes potty" into the provided toy toilet. Yes, they've had wetting dolls in the past, but seeing this thing in action, with kids squeezing it and a stream of liquid coming out of it into a toilet struck me as kind of obscene. I'm sure an "adult" version of this concept would go over big with people who have certain fetishes.

On a totally unrelated note its too bad Blogger doesn't have a "listening to" thing a la Livejournal, as I'm fairly frequently listening to something as I type away. Currently its Solid State Survivor by Yellow Magic Orchestra.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Sure didn't take them long did it? Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger has been chosen as Pope, and will reign as Benedict XVI. He's the first German Pope in a millenium, and at 78 the oldest pontiff elected in 3 centuries. This of course brings up the obvious question of how long his reign might be. Perhaps the other cardinals see him as an interim Pope who will have a relatively short papacy, allowing for some of the other contenders to solidfy their power bases for the next go around.

Interestingly today's papal decision generated one of the hits on the blog today, via a post I made a couple of months ago mentioning the prophecy of St. Malachy. No doubt true believers in this kind of thing will quickly find parallels to draw between the new Pope and whatever the prophecy might say.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Maybe I shouldn't have written about the Blue Jays yesterday. After all they lost. Perhaps I jinked them. Well, if that were actually the case then perhaps I should write something about the Yankees. Wow, they start the day 4 games under .500, tied with the Tampa Bay Devilrays for last in the American League East. I wonder when the last time that happened is. As you can imagine ole George Steinbrenner is already exceedingly upset about this. Betcha heads are gonna roll in short order if things don't improve very quickly.

Speaking of games another one begins today, the race to see who will be the new Pope. 115 cardinals, including 3 from Canada, will decide who the next pontiff will be. It will interesting to see how long they take to reach the required 2/3rds majority.
Once more its time for another random Japanese culture link. This time its some very weird looking customised cars. I almost wonder if some of those attachments aren't meant to be cow catchers.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

It sure is fun to be a Toronto Blue Jays fan this week. The team currently leads the American League East for the first time in years, with a half game lead over Baltimore, and the Yankees, of all teams, in 3rd place. They're 4 games over .500 going into today's matchup with the Texas Rangers. And they've won more games already than they won in all of April last year, with 12 games left on this month's schedule. Now we're all hoping they don't break our hearts this year and blow their early lead, especially since they'll be playing 4 games against the Yankees, 2 against Boston, and 3 against Baltimore, all in their division, before month's end.
No, I didn't fall off the face of the Earth. I didn't go on vacation. I just haven't had anything to write about the past few days. I was just thinking about the price of gas, which has reached 94.9 cents a litre here, which is...some number or other a gallon. Hey, you want the right amount, you figure it out. In any case the thought came to mind that as the price of gas goes up we should see more and more car engine oriented scams, and more folks falling for such scams. "You can get 90 miles a gallon with my special carberator, but you'd better buy it before the oil companies suppress it" cons have been around forever, but they're ever more attractive with world oil prices at their current level. A little common sense shows that such conspiracy theories are silly for one simple reason: the US military. If some super duper ultra efficient internal combustion engine existed you know the US Army would put it in their vehicles, and tens of thousands of Army grease monkeys would know about it. Logistics is a core concern of any military, and if they could hugely reduce the amount of fuel they needed they would, as this would allow them to transport lots of other stuff, like parts and ammo, in its place.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

I got rather a surprise tonight when I watched the news and saw that Wolfgang Droege was murdered. The German born Droege had a long and checkered career on the North American extreme right, including founding the Canadian Neonazi group the Heritage Front, and taking part in a failed 1981 attempt to seize the Carribean island of Dominica. Its a reasonable guess that whoever shot Droege will turn out to be one of his fellow extremists, as has often happened when such people have a falling out.
For anyone who isn't already sick of the stupid thing, here's an interesting little piece on The Da Vinci Code. Haven't read the book personally, and I doubt I will, as its not really my kind of thing, but the way some folks seem to take the material in it literally is quite interesting. Then again people read "truth" into all kinds of weird things, like the idea that the moon buggy test scene in the James Bond film Diamonds Are Forever is some sort of winkwinknudgenudge that the Moon landings didn't actually happen.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Very cool. My Google Adsense ad bar finally popped out some musical instrument related ads. You'd think given some of the things I write about it would have happened sooner.
How peculiar. It seems the writing staff of the cartoon 6TEEN have a strong interest in vomit. So far they've had two episodes in which barfing was a major plot point. In "The Sushi Connection" everyone's favourite shopaholic Caitlin blows chunks all over a car of rollercoaster riders, and the dress she's "borrowing" from a department store, after eating sushi and wasabi. In last night's episode "The Khaki Girl" Jonesy's new job giving out meat "chunklets" leads to massive barfing by just about everyone when they go bad. So what's up with these guys? One barf scene a season is probably enough, unless you're talking about South Park, which incidently last night's regurgitation made me think of. Or could it be they associate slighty ditzy blondes with vomit? After all both episodes focus on Caitlin. I bet that in some markets those two episodes may not end up being shown due to nervous nellies worried about offending someone.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

I can imagine spending 16 grand on a guitar. A premium archtop by a lot of today's builders will cost you that. But this guitar to me is 16 grand of ugly From any distance it looks like something went seriously wrong with the paintjob.

Friday, April 08, 2005

A few thoughts inspired by the current Blue Jays game.

Gregg Allman, get in touch with Johnny Damon. He's still got his "southern rock dude" look going, so maybe he wants to be an Allman Brothers roadie in the off season.

They actually have a full house at Centre tonight. Just shows what happens when your season opener is against the World Series champs.

The new field turf looks rather interesting. Its a more pea green shade than the bright green of the old astroturf.

Geddy Lee of Rush is sitting in the premium seat section behind home plate. The guy sitting with him isn't anyone I recognise. His son perhaps? Lee, Lifeson, and Peart are longterm Jays fans, and often attend games when they get the chance.
Yamaha. For many the name automatically brings to mind motorcycles and other things involving gasoline. But in fact the firm started in 1887 as one of the first manufacturers of what was then the king of musical instruments, the piano. Their logo is actually crossed tuning forks. Yamaha continues to be a major manufacturer of musical instruments of all sorts and related products. Any pop, jazz, rock, or related genre of music group could equip themselves entirely with Yamaha instruments with ease, play those instruments through a Yamaha PA, and record their music using Yamaha recording and signal processing gear. All of which makes it kind of hard to do a general search on eBay for Yamaha musical instruments.
Well, I didn't see anyone in a bikini Thursday, but I did notice what seem to have been more women in skirts, which I appreciated. Firm believer in equal rights between the sexes I may be, but I still look for certain things physically in a woman. The Friday forecast calls for a high of 26.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Many of you will be envying us here in Saskatoon today. Today's forecast calls for a high of 25 degrees Celcius. Pretty cool for early April to have bikini weather.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Its been a good while since I posted a random Japanese culture link, so here's Yamazaki Maso's official website. Yamazaki has performed with various projects, most noteably his one man noise act Masonna. Personally I like the shots of his analog synth gear on the pics page.
Well, I've added some links. Probably too many in the view of some folks I'm sure, and I'll likely add a few more. These are in no particular order, and it should go without saying that the view expressed on these various pages do not always reflect my own. One link I thought about adding was to Atrios's Eschaton, but decided against it since he gets plenty of publicity without any help from me.
Traffic is up again here as the result of being bookmarked on Dragan Antulov's draxblog and Randy McDonald's Livejournal. Its probably getting to be time for me to return the favour to certain folks and put some bookmarks on here as well.
I tried, unsuccessfully, to buy a synth off eBay. As is often the case it then sent me an e-mail of "similar items" currently on auction. But none of them were actually similar, other than being offered under eBay's "musical instruments" category. Seems their software needs some work.

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Hello to the people of Camperville, Manitoba. One of you gave me my latest Where's Willy hit, for which I thank you.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Time for another link for any guitar nuts passing through. Here's a page about the cheap and nasty guitars and other equipment made behind the Iron Curtain in the bad old days. (For those young folks passing through the Iron Curtain wasn't actually a curtain. More like lots of walls full of Commie border guitars with guns and nasty dogs.)
Do you write fanfiction in Esperanto? If so, take heart. has added the language to the languages their site supports "by popular demand." If it weren't for the fact that this occured today I would assume it was intended as an April Fools joke.
With the new Dr. Who to debut tomorrow on CBC Brent McKee has been presenting 9 Days of the Doctor on his I Am A Child of Television blog. Reading the latest entry I was surprised to learn that Dr. Who debuted on the BBC November 23, 1963, which just happens to have been the day after John Kennedy was assassinated. I can't help but wonder if that debut date had any effect on the longevity of the series. It has been suggested that part of what pushed Beatlemania in the US was that the Beatles first appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show only a few weeks after Kennedy was assassinated, and that they provided a positive outlet for many during a very tense and unsettling period.
Congrats to the Toronto Blue Jays for winning their season opener 5-2 over Tampa Bay. Now if they can just do the same thing a hundred more times or so over the next 6 months I'll be quite happy.

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Hooray, hooray, baseball season starts tomorrow. Given that fact its time to post a link to the Batter's Box, a baseball blog from a Canadian perspective. Hopefully there will be lots positive to discuss regarding the Toronto Blue Jays this year.
As you might expect it didn't take long for eBay to be flooded with Pope John Paul II items. And people are bidding on them. I must admit however to being surprised that there is such a thing as a JP II bobblehead doll. People are also using the death to marke their other Pope items, like these Pope Paul VI postcards. (I know these links will probably have a short shelf life but don't worry, there are plenty more where those came from.)

Saturday, April 02, 2005

You can tell spring has arrived in Saskatoon. Its not just things like the snow melting. Its things like seeing someone driving their convertable this afternoon with the top down, just a couple of car lengths from someone on a motorcycle with no jacket on. Hopefully it will dry up soon so we don't have to walk through a hundred improptu ponds a day.
Someone is sure to be writing a nasty letter to CBC today. As I write this the main CBC English language television network is playing curling, and not covering the death of John Paul II. CBC Newsworld is covering the Pope's death, but that likely won't assuage the complaints of some folks, especially those who don't get Newsworld.

Friday, April 01, 2005

If you were excited about Neil Young appearing at the Juno Awards I've got some bad news. He won't be able to attend because of having brain aneurysm surgery this week. Fortunately he's expected to make a full recovery.

He's lucky. Any surgery can be dangerous, and even "successful" aneurysm surgery can have side effects. Just ask Pat Martino. The jazz guitarist spent much of the late '70s suffering from what turned out to be symptoms of an aneurysm. When he was finally properly diagnosed in 1980 he literally had only days to live without surgery. It saved his life, but the side effect was severe memory loss, loss so severe he remembered little of his past life and lost his ability to play guitar. He made a miraculous recovery, but only after years of intensive therapy.
Well, here goes folks. I'm going to try and go a week without buying any Coke. I drink too much of the stuff, so its time to cut back and lose a bit of weight. I'm going to try and stay away as much as possible from other junk food as well. Limiting it to a bit of Friday night indulgence will probably save me a bit of change as well.