Silflay Hraka

7/20/2002




Whenever I see a news story that I have an opinion about, I usually check the heavy hitters on my list to see if they have already covered it. Usually that's Instapundit, Daily Pundit, VodkaPundit, USS Clueless, Andrew Sullivan and Winds of Change. If I don't see it on that list, I assume that it hasn't percolated through the blogosphere yet. If I do see it, usually whatever it links to says what I wanted to say, and says it better. I checked this time, and didn't see anything. Now, that's probably because they have lives on a Saturday night. I, on the other hand, don't.

The New York Times broke this story today. Flaws in U.S. Air War Left Hundreds of Civilians Dead. The problem is, they're treating it like this is a bad thing.

The American air campaign in Afghanistan, based on a high-tech, out-of-harm's-way strategy, has produced a pattern of mistakes that have killed hundreds of Afghan civilians.

On-site reviews of 11 locations where airstrikes killed as many as 400 civilians suggest that American commanders have sometimes relied on mistaken information from local Afghans. Also, the Americans' preference for airstrikes instead of riskier ground operations has cut off a way of checking the accuracy of the intelligence.


A.) I didn't realize that the Gray Lady was in favor of a ground war in Afghanistan, but apparently she was. B.) Only 400! It's proof positive that this was the single most accurate campaign in military history. 300,000 died in Dresden in World War II. 1600 died in Hanoi alone in the Vietnam war. But forget those, The Taliban killed between 3000 and 7000 people that we know of while they were in power. Dropping bombs on Afghanistan has caused a reduction in the civilian death rate! C.) That's at a minimum 3000 less casualties than this guy has, and his numbers were accepted as legitimate back in March. Want to bet he doesn't update that website anytime soon? The NYT certainly doesn't say anything about the reduction in numbers. The whole story plays up the failures, not the obvious success of the bombing.

Journalists can bitch about us as much as they like. The fact it, not even the crappiest blogger pulls stunts like the above.


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Heard this on NPR this morning.

T.I.P.S. - The Inevitable Police State

Update: R.A.T.S

Link via Ravenwolf. Sorry about your dog, hon. I held my Eskimo spitz in my lap as she died, years and years ago. It's a bad memory.



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George gets a lesson in baseball.


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The Blogging of the Vanities

Okay. How sad is this? I JUST finished putting the finishing touches on my little spiel on Lance Armstrong and the Tour de France. And I mean JUST as in 30 seconds ago. ALREADY, I am checking our statistics to see if anyone might already be linking to it. As if that weren't bad enough, I felt compelled to include the link referencing the story EVEN THOUGH I know this bit will be RIGHT ABOVE the article itself. Like you guys wouldn't know what I was talking about if I hadn't included the link. Geez. I MUST go on vacation to get away from this blog. I check our statistics even more frequently than I check for Tour de France updates.

UPDATE: Forgive me, Father, but I must blog. It has been three minutes since I last blogged. I was going to finally get off my butt and shower and run errands and prepare for my vacation, but I thought of a better title for this bit of blog. See, before it was "Blogging Vanity", but I thought that "The Blogging of the Vanities" was so much more intelligent and literary, so I had to come back and change it, even though I am wearing only a towel and the water is running and I know we suffer from water restrictions around here. I also thought up this little confessional bit and thought I had to add it. Oh, and I wanted to check to see if maybe, just maybe, there were any comments from anyone on this post and on my Tour de France post.


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Le Tour

While most of the sporting world has its collective eye focused on the British Open, I find myself grossly uninterested in the whole affair.

I play some golf. (Quite poorly, I might add. BigWig is better than me. For that matter, so is WoundWort. I suspect that Fiver is better than me too, but I can't recall if we've ever played together. We probably have, and since there are very few people that I've ever beaten at golf, we'll assume that he is better than I. Actually, the only person that I can say I've beaten at golf without having to stop and think about it is my father. He stinks at golf. That is to be expected though, given that he is 67 years old, has back, knee, and hip problems, played his first game at age 64, and uses his 1 wood for driving, pitching, putting, and spreading mayonnaise on his sandwiches. To give you a better idea of how poorly I play golf, even he has beaten me on at least one occasion. I suck. But I enjoy the game.) I usually have at least passing interest in the four Majors. I am a fan of Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, and Davis Love III. I am pulling for Tiger to win golf's mythical Grand Slam. But I find that I am annoyed by all the media coverage of the event. I have visited CNNSI and ESPN several times a day for the past week and the BO is usually the top story and IT'S PISSING ME OFF!

I am not visiting to read about the Open. I want to know just what the hell happened today in the Tour de France!

I love this event. I am obsessed with it. I get up in the morning and check for updates before I get in the shower. I arrive at work, boot my computer, fire up my browser and check for updates. I take my mid-morning sabatical to the men's room around 10:30 a.m., come back and check for updates. I go to lunch, come back and check for updates. And again after my mid-afternoon sabatical. And again when I get home from work and...You get the picture.

My enthusiasm for the event has mirrored the rise of Lance Armstrong's dominance of it. (If there wasn't an American in contention, I probably wouldn't follow it. In that respect I am typically American. We don't follow a sport that we aren't expected to win. See: World Cup)

The Tour first drew my attention in 1999 when Lance came back from battling testicular cancer (Beavis interlude: "He said 'testicular'. He. Hehehe. Hehehe." Whereas my brother channels Zod, I channel Beavis, Butthead, and a slew of other cartoon characters. More on that later.) to win his first tour. I didn't follow the actual race, but the whole thing made a good story and I was glad that an American won.

I probably followed a little more closely in 2000. I watched a few minutes of the race if I saw it on TV while I was flipping channels. I would get the update on the leaders and then turn the channel. I read the articles in the Sports pages if they caught my eye. I was pulling for a repeat Armstrong victory. Lance won again and I was well pleased.

Last year I really started to get serious about it. There was a lot more television coverage and I would find myself watching entire stages of the race. I found out what the word "peloton" meant. I already knew that the overall leader wore a yellow jersey, but I didn't know that there were white jerseys (Best Young Rider) and green jerseys (Most Points) and even a polka dot jersey (Best Climber). I found that out too. Lance won again. Lance is the man.

And now it's 2002. And I'm obsessed with the Tour de France. Unfortunately, the vertical scan in my television ceased to be during a thunderstorm a few weeks ago and I'm too cheap to get a new telly or to get the old one repaired, so I can't watch the Tour on TV. But I CAN listen to it. And I do. I listen while I surf the Internet looking for stories that talk of Armstrong's invincibility. (I eat stuff like that up. It's hero worship in it's basest form.) I watch the video. I listen to the audio. I get my tour fix every few hours and I spend the days of rest between stages in very restless fashion indeed.

There was some early talk that Lance was over the hill. Lance won the prologue but lost some time due to an accident and then lost in a time-trial for the first time in a goodly while. (Didn't even know what a time-trial was a few years ago. I naively thought that all the stages were time-trials. I mean, you raced to beat the clock, right? Guess not.) I began to listen to the talk. Maybe Lance is over the hill. Maybe he hasn't got enough juice to win again. Maybe he slacked off on his training a bit. Maybe we'll lose this year! Oh my God! It'll be just like losing the America's Cup! Oh, the horror! Oh, the shame! Oh, the humanity!

But then we got to the mountains and all is well in the world again. Lance won the first two mountain stages going away, with much help from his U.S. Postal Service teammates, and it appears to be mostly downhill from here, notwithstanding the several remaining mountain climbs. Lanced finished 30th in today's stage but it's all part of his master plan to win in the end so I am unconcerned.

If Armstrong wins the Tour this year, it will be his fourth and he will become part of a very select crowd. Only four men will have won more Tours and only three men have ever won four in a row. He will leave behind fellow American Greg Lemond, who won three tours between 1986 and 1990. No other American has ever won the Tour de France. If Lance wins this year, he'll have a chance next year to do something only one man has ever done: win 5 tours consecutively.

Thankfully, I'll be on vacation this week, the last week of the tour. I'll be at the beach with my whole family: mom, dad, brothers, sister, nephew and niece. The house in which we are staying has a working television, or did the last time we were there. When my family packs up for the day and trundles out to the beach to play in the ocean and soak up the rays, I know where I'll be: on the sofa watching Lance climb the mountains into history.


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Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




What immortal hand or eye,
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?


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7/19/2002





Are you linking, are you linking?
To Meryl, to Meryl?
She is getting desperate,
she reminds me of the
Looney Tunes
Looney Tunes

Update:

The blog's are alive, with the sound of pleading.
A song that's been sung, for a couple of years.

Watch the memespread. Nice one, Ocean.


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Annoying the Wife - Chapter 8 - A Dish Served Cold


Mystery odors had been following me around all day long. I’m reading the paper, riding the bus into work, and I get a quick whiff of reek, like a sack of drowned puppies that’s been left out in the hot sun for a week. Obviously it’s the bus, all sorts of freaks ride of the bus. I file it as a factoid to use in my ongoing quest to convince the accountant I married that paying seventy bucks a month to park the SUV in one of the downtown lots makes more fiscal sense than parking in a free remote lot and riding the free bus into town.

But it’s not the bus. Little zephyrs of eau de mort greet me at inopportune times all day long. In a meeting with the boss and the boss’s boss, at lunch with an ex-gf and her husband, or at the comic book store. In the comic book store at least it doesn’t seem out of place. Comic book stores that don’t have weird smells don’t have patrons. And this is an old, well-established comic book store, where the comic literati come to discuss the pressing events of the day, vehemently and at length. It smells like Usenet, of sweat and anger and dried spooge. I’m getting really, really paranoid though, because I can’t place or locate this odor. It’s a hot day, and the stench comes and goes, sometimes vanishing for an hour, then hitting me square in the olfactory nerve, like a hatpin up the nostril.

I’ve performed the surreptitious double-pit quick sniff maneuver, more than once, till it was neither surreptitious nor quick. I looked like a Speed-Stick addict desperately trying to ward off the d.t’s. Nothing. Did I step in something? No. Did I sit in something? Negative. My clothes were clean. I’d pulled clothes that probably shouldn’t have been worn out of the hamper before in my life, but I was single then. I hadn’t done that in three years, minimum. These clothes had been hung in the closet, where they were regularly placed by the clean clothes fairy a short time after I tossed them into the pile of dirty laundry.

I’d cupped my hand in front of my mouth and exhaled, not that I’d ever been able to smell anything that way. I could smoke dung cigarettes and eat garlic possum haggis five times a day and not detect anything. I just don’t have much of a sense of smell. What this meant to me was, if I’m getting reliable whiffs of….whatever the demon wind was, then god only knows what other people were getting. And I would never know. I live in the south, where as a people we are nice to your face so we have more to say behind your back.

I started seeing things. Did that person sitting there just shift away, ever so slightly? Was that an exaggerated sniff, or do they have a summer cold? Did she roll her eyes just after? Each new hint of my hellish new aroma caused me to jerk my head up and sniff violently several times in a vain attempt to triangulate the cursed scent, that sulphuric gust of…of…..god it was familiar. Try as I might, I could not place it.

Until I got home, wet with the sweat of paranoid stress, smelling nothing because my nose had shut down in protest an hour ago. Ngnat ran, ran across the floor as fast as she could for our “Daddy’s home!” hug. Oh, how I needed this! She stopped dead two feet from me, and wrinkled her face.

“Daddy! Poopy diaper!”

Now this was just the last damn straw. All my fears had been realized. I was a smelly man, one of the weirdos that sat next to you when you lost the bus lottery. Effing day. Effing world.

The wife walks in. “What’s wrong with you?”

“I’ve been smelling something all day, and it’s horrible, and it won’t go away and I don’t what it is.”

She leaned in, sniffed. “You smell like vomit.”

Of course! Vomit. That’s what it is! Praise Jesus, I smell like vomit! One mystery down.

“Oh thank god, that’s been driving me nuts all day!” Sniff. Snnnnnniiiiiiiiiffff. “Can’t figure out where it’s coming from, though.”

“Smell the bottom of your shirt.”

Sniff. Cough. “Ooo, yea, that’s it.” Alarm bells start to shriek in my head. “How do you know that?”

“That’s the shirt you had on when Taylor threw up all over me last week.”

“Well, yea. It caught a few chunks, but I threw it….in….the....Oh my God! You just hung it back up!”

“After I read your little story, yes.” Her eyes were gleaming, gleaming with pleasure!

This was not the woman I married. This was some sort of demon. Flabbergasted doesn’t begin to describe my condition.

“That…That….That was the …” Most evil? Viciously horrible? Think man, think! “…..coolest thing you have ever done to me in my life!”

“What are you talking about, crazy man?”

“You got me back! You never get me back! This Rocks! I feel so close to you right now!” I spread my arms wide and advanced upon her. “I…..I want to give you a hug.”

“Ahhh! Stay away from me! You stink!” She vanished up the stairs at warp speed.

She could run, but she couldn’t hide. The house is just too small, to start off with. Also, she kept leaking little snorts of delight. Clever girl. Clever, clever girl.

And then I took a shower.


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7/18/2002

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Serial killers often begin by their careers by torturing animals.


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Idiot. Land Rovers are much easier to break into.


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Excuse me, I have to go scrub my torso until it bleeds.


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An apple a day keeps keeps your husband at bay.


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British Intelligence harboring Al-Qaeda leader?

Article via The Guardian. I can't exactly figure out what the positive aspect of such a move would be for Britian.


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First step on the way to flash crowds? Smart mobs! Of course there's always that niggling little transportation problem.


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The importance of educating yourself globally

I found this article on the pending revolt in Iran following a link from Daily Pundit and had to repost the link here. It's amazing the things you miss by relying on the mainstream media as your primary source of information. There are some who say that blogging serves no real purpose other than as a platform for individuals to serve their own vanity. Informative articles like this disprove that notion every day, and prove to me that the mainstream media is really falling down on the job as far as keeping America informed about the true goings on in the world.


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Greek police have caught the leader of the terrorist group, November 17. Here's a list of their attacks.

Update: Sphaera Ephemeris, a greek blog, has more


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Once we get rid of the house of Saud, we should put these guys in charge.


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I've seen exactly the same expressions on my wife and daughter's faces.
Update: Wylieblog came up with a better tag line than I did.


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Two Boys Born From a Dead Man's Sperm!
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
You should have seen those flagellates squirm!
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
Even though it was against the law.
Her husband's seed she began to thaw.
He was born, everyone said "Awwww"
Gripped his mother with fingers ten;
Screamed aloud like ten dead men
Like break o'day in a boozing den
Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!


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Someone put her little finger in some warm water, and the next thing you know she was floating off.


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12:01 AM Quack
03:40 AM Quack
07:10 AM Quack
07:16 AM Quack
12:13 PM Aflac
05:19 PM Quack
11:02 AM Quack


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Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.

Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




Be careful where you go when you leave the blog meetup day site. They're passing your email address and password to my referral logs.
http://blog.meetup.com/?signin=&email=yogaboat@munged.com
&password=munged &terms=on&rememberme=on&action=
join&zip=27603&localeId=368&setLocale=1


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Alistair Cooke is still doing his "Letter from America" 56 years after it first started. Here's one on our relationship with Israel.

Thanks to Not a Fish for the idea


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7/17/2002




How the other half lives

The Gulf Times Newspaper in Qatar on the latest Israeli-Palestinian happenings.

Morocco Today on who will replace Arafat.

The UAE's Gulf News on Israeli Terrorism in Palestine and the Khaleej Times on the Innocence of Children.

Letters to the Editor in the Yemen Observer. Evidently David Duke wrote some anti-Israeli article for the YO. Yes, THAT David Duke. Also, see if you can find the pro-American editorial.

The Arab News out of Saudi Arabia discusses tons of stuff.

More from Yahoo!. Now go educate yourself about how the other half lives.


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We're missing specific posts from the archives, so if you click on a link and it brings up nothing, that's why. I've tried republishing, but to no avail. I've also used the crappy Blogger help interface twice now to report it. Haven't heard anything back yet. Here's a copy of my latest complaint.

I am missing specific posts from my archives. Not a day's worth, not a week's worth, but specific posts. I reported this problem Sunday night, and no one has even written back to say "working on it", which is all I wanted. I would be pissed but understand if I was not paying for pro blogger. Since I am paying for the service, I expect at least a "we've seen your note" response. No wonder everyone is moving to Movable Type!

The problem, again, is that specific posts are not appearing even though I have republished my archives a number of times.

http://silflayhraka.blogspot.com/2002_06_16_silflayhraka_archive.html#77875749
http://silflayhraka.blogspot.com/2002_06_16_silflayhraka_archive.html#78073185

There may be more. These are the two I have noticed so far.

When I bring up #78073185 to edit and republish, this is all I see.

[BigBody]

#77875749 does not even exist, as far as the editing program is concerned.



Update: Still nothing from Blogger, but maybe I can get some attention by fishing for this guy.


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Citizens of the Evil Axis mourn the dead children of the Great Satan

I found this via the Spleenville World Domination Headquarters. It's a photo gallery of a candle-light vigil held in Iran just after the September 11th terrorist attacks. Take a look and draw your own conclusions.


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I don't wanna' BE a Jester!


What Was Your PastLife?


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Silent blow dart attacks mystify Washington

Police in the U.S. capital are puzzled over a mystery worthy of the fictional master of detection Hercule Poirot himself -- a series of baffling blow dart attacks on unsuspecting citizens.

Remember, these the D.C. Police. Odds are extremely high that they haven't thought to look for a half-naked Yagua Indian with a six-foot blowgun strolling down the street. In any case, that would be Profiling. Profiling bad, very bad.

"I can't recall that we've had such an incident before," said Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Sergeant Joe Gentile, adding that the police were investigating the case as they would any other assault with a dangerous weapon.

Gentile and his partner, Beverly Shiksa, have been permanently assigned to the case by their tough-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside boss, Captain Shoymer.


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Fishing for Bloggers


There’s a discussion over at N.Z. Bear’s about the ethics of emailing other bloggers about posts on one’s site, and where to draw the line between absolute link whore and ethical but undeservingly under read blogger who wants to spread his or her message about.

Spamming other bloggers is pretty much dismissed out right, and emailing even one or two other people about messages not directly addressing something they said is frowned upon, though a surprisingly large number of people at least intimated that they had done it. Have I done that? Oh yea. I’m a link whore’s link whore. But it doesn’t work as well as fishing for bloggers, and blogger fishing is a lot more sporting, after all.

First, it relies on a person’s natural vanity and curiosity to work. I don’t know for sure about anyone else, but I obsessively watch my referral logs. The minute I see a referral page in there that doesn’t fit the daily pattern, I’m off to check it. That’s how I found most of the “Friends of Hraka”. I’ve done this long enough to know that lots of people do this, and not just the microbes of the blogosphere, either. Who, you ask, who? Sorry, I’ll tell you how to fish, but I’ll be damned if I’m telling you where to fish.

If I think I've got a good post, I'll pull up the post's perma-linked archive page and then visit my blogroll from there. The referral log for the blog i'm visiting will record that page, and hopefully the blogger I've just cast to is online, or will be before the record of the visit scrolls away. If you want to hook the famous Tennessee Trout, he pretty much has to be online. His referral logs spin like slot machines. If I see an identifiable return visit in my referral log, then I've hooked a blogger. If I get a link back to the article or a blogroll entry, then I've landed one.

The Ethics of Blogger Fishing.

How you do it is up to you, of course. I know of a way using the Opera browser that would allow me to cast for bloggers almost as fast as I can click the mouse, but I don’t use it, and I won’t tell you how, either. After all, with great power comes great responsibility, and the internet is not exactly known for adhering to that particular cliché. I’ll promise I’ll use it only in case of a blogging emergency, not just because something I thought was pretty cool got ignored by those callous bastards out there.

Innnnnnnnnnnnnnhale. Exxxxxxxxxxxxxxhale.

Where were we? Oh, yes, ethics. No wonder I don’t recognize any of the scenery. If I’m for fishing for someone, I’m not just going to click on their link, hit the back button and proceed to the next blog down on the list. If there’s nothing on their site worth my time, there’s probably nothing on my site worth theirs. I’m going to read a couple of things at least. It’s always time to feed the content monster here at Silflay, and somebody else’s work tastes just as good as mine.

In case you’re wondering, “http://extremetracking.com/open;ref1?login=silflay “ in all likelihood is me, or Kehaar. Like most bloggers, we’re easy to hook but harder to land. Well, not that hard to land, if you know the secret. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to go bait a hook


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Uncommon Sense knows a lot more about Sari Nusseibuh than most people, including us.


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7/16/2002




Give Jesus a poke.

Link via the Alt-log


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America West is still kicking people off if they ask whether the pilots are drunk or not.


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Fatty-Fatty, Two-by-four, killed the mother she abhorred


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Our avian friends have declared war on Microsoft


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Six Billionth Can of SPAM Luncheon Meat Produced

In 1937, the first cans of SPAM® luncheon meat began to appear on the shelves of grocery stores in the United States.

It was the Great Depression. People would eat anything. That's how Episcopalians discovered oral sex.

Sixty-five years later in July 2002, the six billionth can of this convenient, great-tasting canned meat was produced.

Like five billion or so cans before it, it is currently gathering dust in a pantry somewhere.

A can of SPAM® is consumed in the U.S. every 3.1 seconds.

Because the can tastes better than the contents.

SPAM® is also produced in three foreign countries, including Denmark, Korea and the Philippines.

They lost fair and square.

Hawaii leads the way with 6.7 million cans sold annually, which amounts to 5.5 cans per year per Hawaiian.

All of which is served to giant pink tourists at luaus


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Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.

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Boomerangs Athlete Gets Probation

Look, If she doesn't realize that what you say can come back to haunt you, what chance do the rest of us have?

"I can't afford to be right," said Miale-Gix, a lawyer. "This is a situation where it is more important for it to go away."

You're a lawyer and you can't afford to be right? Can you not afford your fee?

"There are new levels of acceptance after 9/11," State Trooper Roger Beaupre said at the time. "Those policies are in place for those on board."

"Hey, you! Hippie Boy! " Trooper Beaupre then yelled at a clerk of court. "You don't look like you're on board! Don't make me come over there and search you for nail clippers".

The crowd around the mighty trooper shifted uneasily. Surely hippie boy didn't have a nail clipper in the courthouse? You couldn't trust those long-haired types. Probably smoked dope before he came to work. He's a drug-crazed lunatic out to take hostages in the courthouse! The clerk goggled wildly at the menacing herd as they snorted, pawing at the faux marble floor tile. Trooper Beaupre smiled, a thin tight smile that didn't make it up to his eyes.

"He said Jehovah!" screamed Mrs. Gorilla, a British emigre with a fistful of gravel.

But before the crowd could charge, they were interrupted by another quote.

The new federal agency in charge of airline security prohibits sporting equipment such as pool cues, hockey sticks and ski poles in carry-on luggage.

Other banned sports equipment:

Tiddlywinks - Iraqi Secret agents have been know to blind a man at forty paces with a well-placed 'wink
Tennis Rackets - Just in case John McEnroe converts to Islam.
Ice-Skating boots - in case Tonya Harding does the same.
Chess Bishops - Pointy
Backgammon - Really just a heavier tiddlywink when you think about it
Foils, Epees and Sabres - We're thinking about allowing them after all, as most pilots really liked Raiders of the Lost Ark
Speedos - Arabs in Speedos can easily disarm pilots made helpless by laughter
20-sided dice - Because Mazes and Monsters was on USA the night before we wrote up the list
Mawashis - 87% of American pilots are terrified that someone will sneak up behind them and throw a dirty sumo thong over their head. 13% are really turned on by the thought, but let's face it, either way the plane is going down.
Surfboards - Got a pointy thing. Also tired of blonde boys trying to fit them in the overhead compartments.
Ping-Pong Paddles and Balls - My brother Brad hit me with a Ping-Pong ball once, and it really stung, and I started crying, and dad told me to suck it up and act like a man, and I cried even harder, and he said "I cannot believe you're such a damn pussy." in this really flat voice and went upstairs, so it's Brad's fault.
Crampons and Pitons - Also pointy. Besides, Crampons sound like a feminine hygiene product, and they've got the same pilot percentages as the mawashis.
Checkers - See Backgammon

Baseball bats and balls are allowed, because it's the American Game, and because them Islamofascists prolly swing like Jack. Unless it's whips, cause they got all that practice whipping firemen who try to rescue girls what ain't got them head things on but are on fire anyway. So whips is banned too. 2-irons is alright, cause only God can hit anythig with a 2-iron. Soccer balls are also ok, since we already know the Saudis can't kick straight.

Grammar in the previous paragraph brought to you courtesy of Brendan O'Neill.


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7/15/2002




AN OPEN LETTER IN SUPPORT OF THE PEOPLE OF IRAN FROM THE WEBLOGGING COMMUNITY

We are not politicians, nor are we generals. We hold no power to dispatch diplomats to negotiate; we can send no troops to defend those who choose to risk their lives in the cause of freedom.

What power we have is in our words, and in our thoughts. And it is that strength which we offer to the people of Iran on this day.

Across the diverse and often contentious world of weblogs, each of us has chosen to put aside our differences and come together today to declare our unanimity on the following simple principles:

- That the people of Iran are allies of free men and women everywhere in the world, and deserve to live under a government of their own choosing, which respects their own personal liberties

- That the current Iranian regime has failed to create a free and prosperous society, and attempts to mask its own failures by repression and tyranny

We do not presume to know what is best for the people of Iran, but we are firm in our conviction that the policies of the current government stand in the way of the Iranians ability to make those choices for themselves.

And so we urge our own governments to turn their attention to Iran. The leaders and diplomats of the world's democracies must be clear in their opposition to the repressive actions of the current Iranian regime, but even more importantly, must be clear in their support for the aspirations of the Iranian people.

And to the people of Iran, we say: You are not alone. We see your demonstrations in the streets; we hear of your newspapers falling to censorship; and we watch with anticipation as you join the community of the Internet in greater and greater numbers. Our hopes are with you in your struggle for freedom. We cannot and will not presume to tell you the correct path to freedom; that is for you to choose. But we look forward to the day when we can welcome your nation into the community of free societies of the world, for we know with deepest certainty that such a day will come.


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Yousef Karsh is dead. He took one of my favorite pictures.


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Well, at least she's not standing in the intersection of 54 and 55 staring down the SUV's.


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Another Virus Warning. It appears that both McAfee and Norton have updates for it.

Today, July 15, 2002, another email worm was discovered in Europe. It is spreading rapidly and may reach us very soon. The name of the virus is W32.Fretham and is considered a low threat by Norton, but it is considered a high threat by other antivirus web sites.

The email message arrives with the following characteristics: It uses its own SMTP engine to send itself to email addresses that it finds in the Microsoft Windows Address Book and in .dbx, .wab, .mbx, .eml, and .mdb files. The email message arrives with the following characteristics:

Payload:
* Large scale e-mailing: Sends to email addresses found in the Windows Address Book and .dbx .wab, .mbx, .eml, and .mdb files.

* Subject of email: Re: Your password!
* Name of attachment: Decrypt-password.exe , Password.txt
* Size of attachment: 48,640 bytes


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Somehow we snagged a paleo-anthropology fan via google last week, and that's plenty reason for me to throw a couple more anthropology geek links out.

We know hominids were out of africa by at least 1.7 million years ago, thanks to Dmanisi and a really cool graphic.

On the complete other end of the scale, here's a guy who's convinced he's found Noah's ark.

The Union of Muslims in Italy are a little upset with a 15th century fresco showing Muhammad among the damned in Dante's Inferno. In fact, they want it destroyed.

The fleshers, hammermen and skinners might finally let Edinburgh see the Blue Banner.

Most links via Explorator


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The Future of Warfare is Ender's Game

U.S. Developing Robot Planes. Found this via RavenWolf.

BTW, if anyone wonders what Orson Scott Card is up to these days, he writes a weekly column for a local rag.


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Dave Barry is muscling in on our turf in all sorts of ways, and Michael Lewis has a small penis.


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The heck with corruption. They should kick him out for the toupee alone.


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Blind Psychic Gropes Buttocks to See Future

Forget palm-reading. A blind German psychic claimed Tuesday he could read people's futures by feeling their naked buttocks.

I bet he can see the passed, too.

Clairvoyant Ulf Buck, 39, claims that people's backsides have lines like those on the palm of the hand, which can be read to reveal much about their character and destiny.

"Yes, everyone I've seen so far? They're assholes."

Update: Here's a picture of Ulf, hard at work. He's a conscientious asstrologer, at least.


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This is a test. This site is conducting a test of the Blogger Pro Emergency Vacation Posting System.. This is only a test

The webloggers in your area, in voluntary cooperation with federal, state, and local authorities, have developed this system to keep you amused in the event of an vacation. Had this been an actual vacation, this post would have contained content. Should this test be successful, anything posted by Bigwig and Kehaar during the week of July21 - July 28 will utilize the Blogger Pro Emergency Vacation Posting System.

This concludes this test of the Blogger Pro Emergency Vacation Posting System.


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More fun with movies

Looks like the Alien vs. Predator video game is being made into a movie.


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First blogger and now this. Looks like DayPop is down.


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The Relative Value of Bloggers.


I forget why, but the other day I did a google search on Instapundit. It’s not like the Professor has a easily forgotten url, and I’ve got a link to it right there on the left. I’m sure he appreciates both of the readers we’ve sent his way.

What caught my eye was the results. There on the right was an ad, not for Glenn Reynolds, but for Oliver Willis' weblog. My curiosity piqued, I then did a search on “Glenn Reynolds”, which gave me an ad for Glenn Frazier. “Little Green Footballs”?. Glenn Frazier again! Curiously, or maybe not, Mr. Willis and Mr. Frazier did not buy ad space for searches on “Oliver Willis" or “Glenn Frazier”.

Now here was an idea. I could stop spending a lot of energy whoring for links or brown-nosing beings higher in the blogosphere ecosystem than Silflay. Which, I must point out is EVERYONE IN THE BLOGOSPHERE ECOSYSTEM, not that I’m bitter. I figure I waste less than two hours a day on various Wile E. Coyote schemes to get into the blogosphere ecosystem. Yes, I realize all I have to do is fill out a form. It just seems like begging, and a man has his pride. I could also concentrate on gradually building a readership by writing really good, thought-provoking and humorous posts, but in all honesty, that doesn’t really play to my skills, now does it?

So through the magic of Google, I could just pony up the bucks and ride the rocket to fame by advertising. It’s the American way, after all. I decided then and there that if I didn’t take out an ad on Google promoting Silflay Hraka, then the terrorists had won. The only question was, who is the best value? Is it Instapundit, even though I’d be lower on the page than Mr. Willis? Maybe USS Clueless would be a better buy, I could go for the heavy-lifting deep thought crowd. Not that they’d stay long once they got here.

Mr. Willis and Mr. Frazier look like they're using Google’s AdWords progam, which allows you to create the content for a little green box that appears to the right of searches. You get four lines, two of which end up being urls and two taglines to summarize your site. I settled on “The Internet, regurgitated.” And “mmmmmmm……predigested”. The only question was "who to buy"? Over the long run, in this case 1000 page views, everyone is equal. Fifteen bucks will buy you ad space for those searches. However, instant gratification junkie that I am, I wanted something quick, something that will give a nice little pop to the site stats at the end of the month. Luckily, Google allows me to compare, estimating how much each keyword I select will cost me over a day, a week, and a month.

Silflay Hraka – Estimated impressions per day 0, Estimated cost per day $0.00

Okay, well, no surprises there.

Instapundit – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Glenn Reynolds – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Little Green Footballs – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Jane Galt – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
The Truth Laid Bear – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Lileks – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Ken Layne – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Matt Welch – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00
Vodka Pundit – Estimated impressions per day - 0, Estimated cost per day: $0.00

Well, this is depressing. Maybe this isn't costing Oliver and Glenn Frazier the money I thought it was. Surely there’s one damn name in the blogosphere worth something on the open market?

Well, yes there is.

Andrew Sullivan - Estimated impressions per day - 600, Estimated cost per day: $9.00

Ok, so I’ve picked a prospective target. Just for my general knowledge, however, how does Andy stack up against other searches?

Bosom - Estimated impressions per day - 400 Estimated cost per day: $6.00
Breasts - Estimated impressions per day - 84,900 Estimated cost per day: $1,273.50
Tractor - Estimated impressions per day - 12,800 Estimated cost per day: $192.00
Scientology - Estimated impressions per day - 7,600 Estimated cost per day: $114.00

So, the only blogger worth anything on the open market ranks just ahead of bosoms, but way down below breasts, tractors, and scientology. So much for changing the world. Not gonna stop me from buying an ad though. I'm going to kidnap somebody's readers. It can't be Andy, since I suspect that A.) There's some out there who will do multiple searches on that name just to cost me money, and B.) There's a good chance that of those 600 impressions a day, 500 or so is Andy ego-surfing.

Update: My targets have been chosen. Soon, you will all kneel before Zod!


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Barbecued Locusts:
Grilled over embers or charcoal. Place about one dozen locusts on a skewer, stabbing each through the centre of the abdomen. If you only want to eat the abdomen, then you may want to take off the legs or wings either before or after cooking. Several skewers of locusts may be required for each person. Place the skewers above the hot embers and grill while turning continuously to avoid burning the locusts until they become golden brown.


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.

7/14/2002

Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.

Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




You know the difference between a writer and a large pizza?

A large pizza can feed a family of four!

Joke via Fred First, who's looking for work


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




Google! DayPop! This is my blogchalk: English, United States, Durham, Bigwig, Male!


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




I've had a tattoo since 1987, It's a black widow spider, about the size of a quarter. The tattooist in Havelock didn't want to put it on my shoulder.

"It'll ruin the space," he said.

I never planned on getting another, but I think i've found a good one to copy.

The world's worst belly-button tattoo.


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




STIR-FRIED DOG

Eviscerate and clean a puppy. Remove the hair by singeing in a rice-straw fire; continue this heat treatment until the skin is golden brown. Cut the meat into cubes and dry-fry them in a wok. Add oil, ginger, garlic, and dried, salted black beans to another wok and stir-fry for 10 minutes. Add the meat, soy sauce, green onions, and deep-fried bean curd. Stir momentarily.

Thanks to Andrea for the inspiration.


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.




Frined of Hraka the Fusilier Pundit is looking to expand his musical horizons. Three words, Fuse. Fountains of Wayne.


Postscript: First time visitor to House Hraka? Wondering if everything we produce could possibly be as brilliant/stupid/evil/pedantic/insipid/inspired as the post you just read? Check out the Hraka Essentials, the (mostly) reader-selected guide to Hraka's best posts, and decide for yourself. Also, you're currently at the old site. Fresh Hraka is posted every day at our current location.

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