Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Oh man, this candy tastes like Asse.

Whoever named this candy didn't do enough research. I guess this is somewhat analogous to Ford selling the Nova in Mexico under the same name ("No go").

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Video-game-themed Marching Band Show

Check out this halftime show from the 11/3/07 Cal Football game.

Although it would have been cool to get one shot from the student side, I guess Cal students don't know how to use video cameras and editing tools and have never discovered YouTube. Yes, that must be the reason I can't find one from the right-side-up perspective (or I'm just lazy).

It has music and formations eliciting Pong, Tetris, Mortal Kombat, Pokemon and Super Mario Bros. A true delight for an old video-gaming fart like me.

EDIT: I watched the Cal band playing this in the much ballyhooed Big Game for their half-time show as well.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

'Tis the Season for huge electricity bills

Christmas lights are a tradition that, while exposed to in my youth, I did not fully experience until an adult. I remember thinking during my freshman year in college that a "hay ride" through neighborhoods festooned with Christmas lights was dorky and gay at best, but actually having gone on said "ride" I must say it was actually pretty entertaining. I would have balked at caroling and wassailing, but hot apple cider and fanatical light shows are surprisingly satisfying.

That said, I never saw anything that comes within even spitting distance of this display, found on youtube:

It's a Christmas light show set to the disco tune "A Fifth of Beethoven."

Monday, November 05, 2007

Newt Migration!!

Wow ~ ok, the east bay does have some cool events after all. Apparently they close a road in the Tilden Regional Park in Berkeley for a NEWT migration. It's kinda sad that when i put in Newt migration in the google video plug in, it brought up Newt Gingrich, but since Newt is (thankfully) not associated with our great State, putting "california newt" in the plugin seemed to have popped up some ok-looking links instead of an irrelevant demagogue.

Anyway, back to the salamanders ~ I remember when we found one when I was in middle school back in Cupe-town. We brought it back to our science class and put it in a terrarium where we fed it those grubs. Then it swelled. I don't think it got fat because it was quite turgid. It might have been fat, but in any case, newts aren't supposed to look like that, so our teacher (Ms. Schiros, bless her surreptitiously-smoking heart) supposedly returned him/her/it (or, "the newt") to its natural environment. Or maybe she didn't. Who knows?

Anyway, it's cool seeing these newts are spared the rigors of the road as well as seeing that the East Bay has more than cows and tract housing.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

In Soviet Russia, "In Dog We Trust"

Here's a CNN article on 10 dogs that changed the world. My favorite is an account of how Pope Clement VII was bitten by Cardinal Wolsey's dog and subsequently refused to grant the divorce of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon.

By the way, the article overplays the roles of the dogs rather egregiously ~ for instance, the refusal to annul Henry's marriage was an extraordinarily sensitive political decision involving threats from Catherine's brother, the Holy Roman Empire ~ it's kinda funny reading about these forgotten canines from other ages.


I didn't even think to write about the mild earthquake on Tuesday night. The only reason I'm writing now is because I read an article in the NY Times website and it mentioned some blogger who was "sleep-deprived" because of worry of aftershocks. As a native of coastal California, I know the threat of earthquakes is real, but losing sleep over it seems sad. Que serĂ¡, serĂ¡.

Just get your earthquake kit in order and confirm you live in a building that meets the safety codes. Worrying about the 9.0 earthquake that buildings aren't designed to handle is like worrying about spontaneously combusting (Hey, supposedly it happens!). Of course, I don't have a safety kit prepared so I guess I'll probably be one of those victims on TV holding up a crudely painted sign to the news chopper above saying "Send help!"