February Lard
Thanks to a suggestion from bonedancer, this Wednesday we shall be trying out Kia's Pasteria on Abbeydale Road (near the bottom of Woodseats Road) at around 7:30. The nearest pub is The Broadfield, so if you're in the mood for a drink meet there beforehand. It is about ⅓ of a mile away though, for what that's worth.

Party leftovers
Argh. Been meaning to post this for ages.

Thanks again for everyone who came to my New Year/Birthday party. All the food that was left is now gone, but I still have some containers and other miscellanea that needs to find its way home.

1 "Plastic is not fantastic"/Manchester international festival canvas bag.
1 robust iron(?) bottle opener/flathead screwdriver, stamped "GEORG". Possibly belongs with bag.
1 24cm×18cm×9cm "sistema" plastic container, with two blue lid clips along the long sides.
1 22cm×15cm×6cm generic food container, with lid clips on all 4 sides.

If these are yours, or you know who the belong to, please give me a shout, and I'll try to get them back to you as soon as I can.

Corporate advertising on the BBC - again.
I was watching TV over Christmas, as you do, and noticed something peculiar. In the between-program voice-overs where the BBC tells you what's coming on later, they kept referring to Brave as "Disney's Brave".

Why? They didn't mention the production company or distributor of any of the other films they showed. They didn't refer to "Short Circuit" as "Tri-Star's Short Circuit", or to "DreamWorks Animation's Madagascar 3". So how come Disney gets free brand awareness promotion?

At least, I hope it was free. I imagine that name-checking Disney would be something that the other channels might charge for. Part of me hopes the BBC would be better than that, but I'm not sure if it's better that they do it for free than it would be if they charged for it.

Come on, BBC, you're meant to be better than that. :-(

January lard
Just in case you have any money at all left in your wallet, and any calories left in your new year diet plan, lets give Trippets a go, which was recommended to me not too long ago by... someone. (I may have had a drink or two at the time. Sorry if it was you, and I forgot.) It's a lounge bar with a tasting menu, so we can meet there from around 7 for a drink, see what's on the menu, and how it all works.

On the off chance that we end up needing a backup plan, we could wander over to West Street around 7:30 and vote from there.

Happy New Year!
Thanks to everyone who came to mine to see the new year in. You all helped make it a wonderfully warm and relaxed evening, and made me feel aware of being totally surrounded by friends. I hope to see more of you all in the coming year.

SpaceX returns to flight, and to the launch site!
Falcon 9 stage land at Cape

SpaceX rocket in historic upright landing

Video from SpaceX mission control with everyone going bananas (full launch webcast).

Falcon 9 First Stage Landing | From Helicopter

How this will revolutionize the cost of space travel

This is huge, but I don't have much time to write about it now. I'll try to put up a post about this, and about the Blue Origin flight from a few weeks ago, sometime in the next couple of days.

Happy Winter Solstice Everyone!
Remember, Axial Tilt is the reason for the season.

And may whatever midwinter celebrations that you observe around this time of year be filled with whatever people, activities and rituals that you prefer.

Xmas lard reminder
This Wednesday, Rowsha, 7:30.

Meet in the Walkley Cottage from 7:00 for pre-lard drinks.

Let me know if I need to make any changes to the booking.
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You're just a bunch of new cruel people being cruel to other people who'll end up being cruel to you
Congratu-fucking-lations, President Hollande. You've retaliated with airstrikes and killed a bunch of Their civilians.

Is that enough now? If not, how many will be? How many of Them do you want to kill before you'll feel like you've sufficiently avenged those of Us that They killed? How many of Them to you want to make feel the rage you feel now? How many of Them do you want to forge into feeling the need and the self-righteous justification for retaliation that you feel?

As John Oliver so eloquently put it, "this attack was carried out by gigantic fucking assholes. Unconscionable flaming assholes, possibly working with other fucking assholes. Definitely working in service of an ideology of pure assholery".

Why, why, WHY do We have to co-inhabit that level of pure assholery with Them? Isn't there some path We can take where We are not also gigantic assholes? Or are we doomed to be ruled by people who look like grown-ups, but are still incapable of exercising any sort of emotional self-control in the face of provocation, and can't help but blindly, unthinkingly, and totally predictably lashing back in return?


You are not superior to the people who were cruel to you
The near-simultaneous attacks in Paris that killed nearly 130 people were an "act of war" organised by the Islamic State (IS) militant group, says France's President Francois Hollande.


Islamic State released a statement on Saturday saying "eight brothers wearing explosive belts and carrying assault rifles" had carried out the attacks on "carefully chosen" targets, and were a response to France's involvement in the air strikes on IS militants in Syria and Iraq.

Oh yeah, we (the west) are already at war in the area, and have been for 12 bloody years. Your response therefore is...?

So France will be pitiless in its response to the Islamic State militants," [French president Hollande] said, vowing to "use all means within the law.. on every battleground here and abroad together with our allies.


Edit: Answer: He doesn't. I am reminded of the recent article that George H.W. Bush Was So Bored by Peace He Wanted to Quit - our leaders don't go to war to safeguard their citizens. They do so to stroke their precious egos, to feel big and important, because running a country in peacetime is apparently not grandiose enough for these narcissistic psychopaths.

Please stop this ride. I want to get off.

Edit 2: Clarified wording of rant.


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