Did anyone spot the article in the Sunday Times about PetsCell, the mobile phone for your dog? Apparently, now that all the humans have phones the doggies are feeling left out.
Having experienced how useless phones are for keeping track of children, I really can't imagine that PetsCell will be much better for keeping tabs on our canine friends. I suppose one good thing is that the dog will have more difficulty switching the phone off when he doesn't want to be found!
Whether there will be the problem of phone theft I don't know, but I'm sure it will be only a matter of time before a phone-toting dog develops cancer, and the owner tries to sue the manufacturer of the PetsCell.
Monday, January 31, 2005
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:47 a.m.
Sunday, January 30, 2005
One of my many faults is the fact that I have great difficulty concentrating on one thing at a time. I tend to start doing one thing then get distracted before I've finished and go off to do something else.
According to an article in The Independent on Friday, "Natural fidgets keep slim without effort". It reports the findings of a study that showed that "people who fidget find it easy to lose weight because they may have inherited a biological tendency to burn calories without even trying". The boffins have termed the process by which fidgets lose this weight Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT).
By my reckoning, I should be doing lots of NEAT. So why am I still a fat bloater?
Dr Levine of the Mayo Clinic reckons that obese people could be educated to develop habits that involved fidgeting and other body movements. So watch out for the Fidgeting Fatties!
Posted by Son of Groucho at 3:15 p.m.
Saturday, January 29, 2005
Friday, January 28, 2005
Wosog bought me a digital camera for Christmas, so I've decided to try to carry it around with me as much as possible. There have been numerous occasions in the past when I've seen things that I thought would make a good photograph but I haven't had the equipment to take the photo.
Spotted this sky on the way to work. Quite nice don't you think?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:48 a.m.
Thursday, January 27, 2005
As a people mechanic, I regularly see patients who have insomnia. Unfortunately, modern medicine, with all its wonders, has little to help this situation. Benzodiazepines like temazepam and nitrazepam are related to diazepam (Valium). These drugs replaced barbiturates, which are potentially addictive, and are very dangerous in overdose. They were thought to be the answer to anxiety and insomnia when they first became available, and they are certainly significantly safer in overdose than barbiturates. However, over time, it emerged that people can become dependent on them, and they also tend to lose their effect with continuous use.
Fortunately, most people don't have as much difficulty sleeping as Mr Nesterchuk from the Ukraine, who claims he hasn't slept for more than 20 years. Has he considered watching re-runs of the Des O'Connor Show?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 9:06 p.m.
Wednesday, January 26, 2005
Being a boring So-and-so, people struggle to decide what to buy me for Christmas. As a result, this year I received two calendars. One was the "1000 Places To See Before You Die Calendar" which tells me about lots of fascinating places I'll never be able to afford to visit (unless I win the Lottery).
The other one was the "Doctors' Calendar" which has a very strong Amercian bias. It contains several quotations, most of which I've not found particularly inspiring or amusing. It also has jokes. This is one of the better ones:
"A ninety-two-year-old woman had a full cardiac arrest at home and was rushed to hospital. After about thirty minutes of unsuccessful resuscitation attempts the old lady was pronounced dead. The doctor approached the lady's seventy-two-year-old daughter and told her that her mother didn't make it.
'Didn't make it? She left in the ambulance forty-five minutes ago!'"
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:39 a.m.
Tuesday, January 25, 2005
Did any one else spot this post in Boing Boing about person or persons unknown in Germany planting little American flags and pictures of George W Bush in dog turds?
The link in Ananova is absolutely hilarious, including speculation about the motivation behind the dirty deed, as well as an admission from the Police that they don't know what they will do to him, her or they if they catch the perpetrator or perpetrators in the act. Apparently "Legal experts say there is no law against using faeces as a flag stand and the federal constitution is vague on the issue." Really?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:00 p.m.
Monday, January 24, 2005
Wosog and I went to see The Aviator yesterday. What a great film with superb performances from several actors, particularly Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes. I didn't realise it was such a long movie (170 minutes), but it didn't seem over long because the performances and the story were so engaging.
This was definitely a film best seen in the cinema because the flying sequences were absolutely amazing on the big screen. The scene where Hughes has his second plane crash, and almost dies, is incredible.
Martin Scorsese is one of my favourite directors, and I hope The Aviator wins the Oscar for Best Film this year.
Posted by Son of Groucho at 9:14 p.m.
Sunday, January 23, 2005
I'm sure that the UK Independence Party (UKIP) (who, I must admit, I think are a bit barking) will be distraught to learn that Mr Robert Kilroy-Silk is leaving them.
I think I can honestly say that I've never come across a megalomaniac that had so little megalo to be manic about. The ironic thing is that he thinks UKIP is a joke!
On the topic of mania, I think the picture in this piece shows he's really gone over the edge this time. Maybe someone needs to throw a bucket of water, or something, over him (again)?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 8:08 p.m.
Saturday, January 22, 2005
Gdog's bedroom floor.
I had better keep this information from Gsog and Gdog. Apparently boffins at Kingston University have found that house dust mites, associated with asthma, cannot survive in the warm, dry conditions found in an unmade bed.
According to Dr Stephen Pretlove "Something as simple as leaving a bed unmade during the day can remove moisture from the sheets and mattress so the mites will dehydrate and eventually die."
This would be music to the ears of my lethargic teenage duo: a potentially beneficial rationale for one of their most annoying habits. All they would then need to do was think up some excuse for having their bedroom floors covered with assorted rubbish (see also above).
Posted by Son of Groucho at 3:34 p.m.
Friday, January 21, 2005
I found this site (stolen from Octopusdropkick!) quite intriguing. The idea is that you think of an object and the site asks you a series of questions to try and identify it. I thought of "a condom", and it got it wrong at first. It then asked me 3 supplemental questions and came up with "a diaphragm": quite impressive. The site then argued that I had given inaccurate answers to 3 of my original set of questions!
Why not give it a try?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 8:10 a.m.
Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Tuesday, January 18, 2005
If you have checked out TVOR in the past, you may be wondering what has become of young Gdog. The poor wee soul has been beavering away recently, studying for an important Psychology exam. All this book work has been interfering with her other interests, including partying and the cinema.
She seems to be coming across a phenomenon that I found really irritating when I was a student: namely people who claim to have done no work. Having resisted the entreaties of her less committed friends to go on various nights out, she has asked several people on her course how much studying they've done only to be told that they've not even started. Who are they kidding?
I well remember people in my medical year who claimed to have done no studying, then walked off with distinctions in several subjects. There was also the allied phenomenon of people who regularly left exams claiming "I've failed that!" then emerged at the end of the day with percentages in the stratosphere.
Anyway, she's gone out tonight to a concert for some well earned relaxation. We're left with Gsog, who continues to rate studying a very poor second to skating. But that, as they say, is another story.
Posted by Son of Groucho at 8:10 p.m.
Monday, January 17, 2005
Sunday, January 16, 2005
Saturday, January 15, 2005
My first thing is "Stop procrastinating", which I illustrate with my copy of "The Procrastinator's Guide To Success". Unfortunately, you've guessed it, I haven't got around to reading it yet!
Like several of my 277 fellow procrastinators, however, I have read a useful article on the web by Steve Pavlina called "Overcoming Procrastination" (http://www.dexterity.com/articles/overcoming-procrastination.htm ).
So far I've only got 5 things on 43 Things, but I think I'll try to make some progress with those five before adding any more....
Posted by Son of Groucho at 10:34 p.m.
Thursday, January 13, 2005
Due to a shortage of sperm donors in the state of Victoria in Australia, an IVF clinic in Melbourne has had the wizard wheeze of asking all male politicians under the age of 45 years to consider making a donation!
The medical director says he's asking them because they are "some of the leading role models within our community" (honest!). I think the real reason is that he knows that, like the majority of their British counterparts, most Australian politicians are a load of w-nkers!
Posted by Son of Groucho at 10:02 p.m.
Wednesday, January 12, 2005
I see that an American man is selling advertising space on his forehead on eBay! He's already received 39 bids, and has made it clear that there are certain things that he wouldn't have tatooed there.
His mother apparently thought he was bonkers initially, but now feels he has been "thinking outside the box". She was right the first time: he is bloody bonkers!
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:47 a.m.
Monday, January 10, 2005
Step aside QWERTY keyboard! After 130 years this is the New Kid on the Block. Inventor John Parkinson hopes we'll be falling over ourselves to buy the 53-key Alphabetical Keyboard.
What do you think folks? Looks a bit Fisher Price to me, and those big spaces at the centre could swallow up even more unsavoury items than the existing design!
Posted by Son of Groucho at 6:43 p.m.
Sunday, January 09, 2005
The Despair Inc. 2005 Demotivators Calendar is a superb antedote to all those fatuous glossy "inspirational" posters you see around the place. This illustration on Motivation itself also refers to robots, one of my pet themes.
Friday, January 07, 2005
Thursday, January 06, 2005
As the days unfold following the Asian Earthquake and Tsunami, no doubt stories will emerge of amazing heroism and generosity in dire circumstances. Unfortunately, tragedies such as this also encourage the worst possible behaviour in some people.
I had already heard on the radio that traffickers in children were looking for "targets" in the disaster area to sell for exploitation and sexual abuse. Shooting Parrots informed me of the despicable creatures sending hoax and obscene e-mails to worried familes, as well as the lowlives who stole money intended for the appeal from a pub in Hartlepool.
Finally, it becomes clear that there are already spam e-mails from supposed Tsunami victims appearing in e-mail inboxes all over the globe. Apparently, it's thought that it is only a matter of time before websites that spoof well known charities appear, in an attempt to siphon off donations.
Words fail me!
Posted by Son of Groucho at 7:30 a.m.
Wednesday, January 05, 2005
Travelling to work in the car this morning I listened to a radio piece on the importance of handshakes in aiding the assessment of people, even in this technological age with its detailed psychological questionnaires etc. There was even an interview with a women representing a recruitment agency describing how they give their clients lessons in how to give a favourable handshake!
Special handshakes that were secret in the past are unlikely to remain so in the age of Google and the like. A very simple search reveals the "secret" of the Masons' Handshake (or, rather, Handshakes), as well as many of their other bizarre manoeuvres.
Our old friends at the Landover Baptist Church have also done us the favour of revealing the secrets of the Homosexual Handshake. This should make it easier for right thinking Christian Folk to thwart The Homosexual Agenda.
Isn't it amazing what a little bit of physical contact can signify?
Posted by Son of Groucho at 8:04 p.m.
Monday, January 03, 2005
Just before Christmas recedes into the distance, I thought I would put this monstrosity forward as my candidate for the World's Worst Christmas Tree (click on the picture for a bigger version). It comes, via Bifurcated Rivets, from a website called Uglychristmaslights.com, where you can find some other gruesome specimens. I suppose it does provide a use for all those PC magazine CDs containing programs that you didn't know you really needed, and now wish you hadn't installed!
There seems to be a disturbing trend for Christmas trees to look less and less like, well, trees, and more like multibranched fibreoptic nightmares. Bring back proper Christmas Trees, I say! You've got a year to do it.
Posted by Son of Groucho at 9:49 p.m.