Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sarah Palin as Blunder Woman

Courtesy of Mad Magazine.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Glenn Beck/Jared Lee Loughner Mashup

Blogger Driftglass creates an eerie mashup consisting of one half Beck-face and one half Loughner-face and the resemblance is uncanny.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

How to Handle Anger the Star Trek Way

Here is a hilariously entertaining mashup of scenes from the original Star Trek TV series about how to deal with anger, done in the style of those old-fashioned (1950's and 60's) educational films that used to be so popular in school.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Ricky Gervais: Why I'm An Atheist

The Wall Street Journal has an article up by actor Ricky Gervais in which he shares his thoughts about "Why I'm An Atheist." Mr. Gervais lays out the basic reasons why he does not believe in God or a god or any gods and the reasons are typical of those who identify themselves as atheists. Not much new to learn here other than perhaps the turning point in his own life that caused him to question whether the God of his childhood actually exists or not.

Honestly, I've never cared for Mr. Gervais' performances as an actor in the couple of movies I have seen him in. He may be better as a stand-up comedian, but I can't comment on that since I've never seen him do a routine.

But I will say that my estimation of him as a person has risen dramatically after reading this article. I believe there may be more substance to him in his real life than what I've been able to see of him in his on-screen performances.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Emergency and Disaster Supply Kit

An emergency or disaster may strike at any time. Your chances of survival increase dramatically if you are prepared with items you can use. Remember, in a natural or man-made disaster, help and first responders will probably be so overwhelmed that they may not reach you for several hours or possibly days.

To help you be prepared. Ready America has provided a list of items you might consider adding to your Supply Kit, depending on your particular situation and possible conditions.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Happy Birthday, Nostradamus

The Writer's Almanac by Garrison Keillor makes note of the fact that today is the birthday of world-renown prognosticator Nostradamus. You know who he is right? Like every December when you're standing in line at the grocery store and see headlines on The National Star (or whatever they call it) such as "Nostradamus Predicted Sarah Palin Would Quit" or "World Will End in 2011 According to Nostradamus"?

Yeah, THAT guy. Here's their write-up:

It's the birthday of the mystic Nostradamus, born Michel de Nostredame in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, France (1503). His father was an attorney, and the family was comfortably middle-class. Michel went off to the University of Avignon when he was 15, where he was nicknamed "little astronomer." But when the plague erupted again, the university closed and he was sent home.

At some point he taught himself enough about plants and medicine to work as an apothecary. He tried to study to become a doctor, but was kicked out after the school realized that he was an apothecary, a trade that was banned by the university. Much of his medical work revolved around the plague, which was a huge problem still in Europe, even though the main epidemic had been during the 14th century. He had some modern ideas about healing - he believed that good hygiene went a long way and he was ahead of his time in his disapproval of bloodletting.

At some point, his wife and children died, probably victims of the plague. But he got married again, to a rich widow this time, and had six more children. No one is sure what prompted him to write his first almanac in 1550, full of prophecies and annual predictions, dabbling in astrology. He published his book under the name Nostradamus, the first time he had Latinized his last name. And it was a big success, so he kept publishing a new book each year, each with 100 verse predictions. He had a ready audience - people considered astrology a legitimate source of information, and some members of the royal court in particular were fans of Nostradamus, even though he was not a very good astrologer, and had to ask people to supply their own birth charts for him to interpret. He made more than 6,300 predictions, including predictions about the world well into the future, until the year 3797. By the time he died - after predicting his own death the night before - he was rich and famous.

Plenty of people continue to read his predictions. Among other things, Nostradamus has been credited with predicting the Great Fire of London, the rise of Adolph Hitler, both world wars, the creation of the United Nations, the assassination of JFK, the atomic bomb, the Apollo moon landings, the McCarthy trials, the death of Princess Diana, and 9/11. But his predictions have only seemed true when people have looked back at his writings after a major event and found a verse that might fit; no one has ever been able to read one of his predictions and say, "This huge natural disaster will happen in this place at this time." As many people have pointed out, the language of his prophecies is so vague and there are so many of them that it is easy to find a prophecy to fit any situation. And people have often fudged the translations to make them even less specific. After World War II, MGM made a short film called "Nostradamus Says So," which gave a little background on Nostradamus and suggested that he had predicted the Allied victory during the war. They quoted this verse, which they said was about the Statue of Liberty:

"The chosen protector of the great country For endless years will hold the famed torch It will serve to guide this great people And in its name they will struggle and triumph." But a more accurate translation reads: "The newly elected patron of the great vessel Will see the clear flame shine for a long time Which will serve as a lamp to this great territory At which time the armies under his name Will join with those happily of Bourbon From east to west resting his memory."