Monthly Archives: July 2003

Bitches and Babies

Another one for my darling sister. I haven’t visited Heartless Bitches International for a while. The most recent “bitchitorial” is all about the horror of being a parent for real. Brace yourselves.

Family and Friends

Happy anniversary, Clare and Steve! Some of your wedding and christening pictures are finally up over at Love And Bent Spoons. Now, perhaps you can do something useful with your absurdly long state-sponsored summer holiday and add some captions. (Your username and password will arrive in your email.) (10 comments on PooterGeek—so far—in one day. […]

Unintentional(?) Humour

I browsed Amazon.co.uk today, thinking of picking up the This is Spinal Tap DVD, and I noticed two interesting things about the page for the This is Spinal Tap CD. First: the famously “blacker than black” album cover can be clicked on for a larger version. (Yes, but is it art?) Second: if you scroll […]

Read ‘Em and Weep, Berlinski

The latest scores from Google look like this: Damian.Counsell: 755 Claire.Berlinski: 721 Your move, Claire. >:->

Fine Distinctions

After laughing at my crap driving today, Leasy (pictured here*, not being a slapper with Adam) and her friend tried to explain to me the difference between “slag” and “slapper”. The English to American Dictionary agrees with them. [Scroll down to the relevant words on this page---they're next to each other there.] *I’d credit the […]

Hello Mudder, Hello Fadder

Welcome back from your hols, parental phenotypes. I’ve been out a lot, but will ring soon, I promise.

Maoigraphs

Maoi introduced me to a couple of photography sites that make my anti-expensive-hardware attitudes look mild by comparison. The Holga is—as the young people would say—a complete munter of a camera, yet, in the right hands, takes pictures like these. Maoi herself owns a Colorsplash, which I referred to as looking like a travel iron. […]

De-fence

Not a good start to today: I drove into work and, while attempting to park, drove through a fence. If you’re reading this Auriol, Viv is OK. There are some fine scratches on her bonnet which are so superficial they mostly wipe off; I’ll examine more closely later in the week. One of those plastic […]

Very “Silly Spiders” Indeed

Ask not how I came to be visiting this page; ask instead why a lesson in how to distinguish spiders from flies by counting the number of legs they have is illustrated by two six-legged spiders.

Hurry Up And Die, You Bastards.

Now boy George has returned from his tour of Africa, an email from Claire on Friday reminded me that I haven’t commented on the recently shortening life expectancy of Charles Taylor‘s thugocracy, another positive spin-off from Britain’s intervention in Sierra Leone. Here’s a Time article surveying the Anglosphere’s interests. Oh yes, and another old African […]

Contextualization

Judith sends a link to this clever little historical parody by military historian Victor David Hanson from the National Review Online.

Congo Concern Continued

Auriol sends a link to more depressing reading from darkest Africa in which she is interviewed by the Scottish Sunday Herald. It seems like a proper serious Sunday broadsheet, too, with serious news from all over the globe. Judith might be interested in this other article about single mothers in Israel.

So Prescient My Pants Hurt

I aspire to an permanent state of smugness, but I occasionally find it uncomfortable being wise before the event. Following my last WMD ‘Blog posting, I flicked through my correspondence from around the time of the original one. On 18Feb03, in an email to about a dozen fellow members of la Résistance, hiding in attics […]

Silly Silly Silly

As if you ‘Blog readers needed telling, there are people out there with too much time on their hands. One of them has prepared The Hand Puppet Movie Theatre; and, especially for Leasy, here’s a link direct to his related Animatrix adaptation. Masterly. Still sillier and more obscure, Kim sent me a link for those […]

Stop with the Weapons of Mass Destruction, Already!

Back in February I put what I was worried was an already-tired link to the famous Weapons of Mass Destruction “error message” in my ‘Blog. (Scroll down to the 13Feb03 entry for the original reference.) It has recently re-emerged as the sort of phenomenon even grandmothers know about [ winks at Judith*] and I have […]

Cheapest of Shots

I usually defend the USA against hackneyed attacks on its culture of consumption, I know, but if you had two SUVs lined up outside a fast food joint called “FATBURGER”, would you have been able to resist taking this photo? (Yes, I waited for the SUVs to pull up—but not for very long.) Update: Here’s […]

Run For The Hills!

How can you flee in terror from a natural disaster called “Claudette“?

Brava, Claire!

Dr. Berlinski‘s book is now in Amazon’s top 300! In other news, the annoying woman has out-googled me: 656 entries for “Claire.Berlinski” over 608 entries for “Damian.Counsell“. (Lazy journalists don’t put the dot in the middle of firstname.surname pairs when they are counting hits-per-person, thereby inflating numbers.)

Uncle Damian Answers Your Questions

Dear Uncle Damian Despite being in a stable long-term relationship, I have become stigmatized as a result of my forthright personality and purely platonic extra-curricular associations with men other than my boyfriend. In short, all the girls hate me and they think I’m a slag. I don’t know why I’m writing to you either, since […]

I’m Still Waiting

I imagine falling asleep in 1984 and waking up 19 years later in 2003. After a quick stroll round the block, my first question would have to be: "Where is my flying car?" Well, where is it? The explanation is the usual one, of course: TV lied to us.

Classical Music

Yesterday evening, as I drove through the rolled Cambridgeshire countryside, my local radio presenting duo promised me that they would be “talking with the legendary Dido”. Omigod, they have actually got an interview with the Queen of Carthage! Who next? Cleopatra? (Surely they couldn’t have meant the Queen of Bone-achingly Banal Bridget Jones Ballads, the […]

How Do You Spell “Free”?

Maoi drew my attention to an article in tomorrow's Nature about an international call for patent-free, "open source" drug development, signed by various stars, including a couple of Nobelists. I would love to link you to the actual story, but there's no access for non-subscribers.

Imperialist Pigs!

Meanwhile, in Africa (remember Africa?), those evil colonial oppressors are at it again.

Rewriting History

Curiously, since I linked to it earlier today, that BBC story has changed from one leading with the enthusiastic welcome the Liberians gave American military advisors, to one focusing on the arrival of West African peacekeepers. Hmm. You can try this one from the Boston Globe instead.

I Call It Killing

If you believe in capital punishment, you have no right to plead squeamishness in the face of the details of executions; if you believe that abortion should be legal, you can’t object when your opponents use pictures of foetuses. There are some kinds of killing that some humans are prepared to accept, but those people […]

…And The Lesson For Today

How should someone from this side of the Atlantic communicate with basketball-playing brothers from New York? Mike and I received a tutorial in this fine art from hoop-crazy Leasy earlier today. Are these the kind of people she had in mind?

Independence Day Weekend

Amber, our Boston correspondent (in the other Cambridge), witnessed the Fourth of July fireworks over the Charles River from an amazing vantage point at MIT. She recommends this Yahoo! slideshow featuring that event, and others around the States. It’s an epic collection of images, with over 100 frames; she didn’t bother after number 60.

Freeway Culture

Some of my holiday snaps are back from the lab. I’ll spare you the party and baby photos, but you might want to smile wryly at the Americana. I saw this blunt window sticker on the freeway to the Norton Simon Museum at Pasadena. General admiration of Britain even extended to the bumper (I mean […]

They’re Here!

The Genome Campus has been swarming with non-scientist visitors over the past couple of days. They are here to find out what we get up in our secluded, multi-million-pound, international research centre by viewing a range of exhibits and taking tours of the non-restricted parts of the premises. This is in celebration of the anniversary […]

“Chirpy Cockney” Chris Butcher Revisited

Got a few nice B&W pics back from the lab today. So Chris’s page has been updated with a new one of him and here’s a cute portrait of Lynn and Chris I took when they visited Cambridge at the end of May.