Thursday, April 17, 2014

How you know vampires have thoroughly taken over pop culture

I was reading Wired to "catch up" on Orphan Black, the TV thriller the follows a passel of female clones as they attempt to uncover their origin and purpose.  (I watched the first season but I thought a recap was in order.) In a breathless rush, the writer, Devon Maloney, attempts to summarize hours of television in a few paragraphs. It's about clones, and eugenics and possibly nature versus nurture and the "terrifyingly talented" player of all the clones, Tatiana Maslany. About half way through we get this description:
Anyway, the clones grew up (and were closely monitored) under different circumstances around the world. We don’t exactly know Leekie’s motivation, apart from observing nature-versus-nurture in its purest form. (Eventually, we found out that each clone has a single differentiating gene that acts like a nametag.) Two clones, Sarah and Helena, were spirited away by their birth mother to protect them, which means they’ve grown up unmonitored, outside the experiment. Meanwhile, several of the other clones have begun to suffer from a mystery illness that involves coughing up your own blood.
(My italics.)

Wait, now we have to specify that blood which is coughed up is the character's own blood? Who else's blood could it be? Is this like Spinal Tap - the drummer Stumpy Joe Chiles who choked on someone else's vomit, except in this case you might assume a character choked on someone else's blood unless reassured otherwise?  

I blame the ubiquity of vampires. 

Then again, unlike in Stumpy Joe's case, where, as Nigel Tufnel remarked, "You can't dust for vomit", you can identify blood. But they are clones, so they all have the same blood. Perhaps this cryptic remark is actually a spoiler? (Probably not.)

Orphan Black Season 1 is available on Netflix. The second season begins airing on BBC America on April 19th. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Idols as tangible as knockers

"Idols as tangible as the knockers on their front doors." That's what the narrator says about Beat Groups, honest.



This is a lovely color Pathé News clip of Liverpool from 1965. The narrator talks about the change from "traditional" Liverpool songs (sea shanties, Maggie May and so on) to Merseybeat.  It's a little dishonest as of course The Spinners (the UK folk group, not the American R&B group) were formed in 1958 and were part of the Great Folk Scare, rather than a bunch of Liverpudlian elders doggedly carrying on an ancient tradition. However, although they weren't actually a vestige of genuine people's music, folk was certainly ubiquitous enough at the time. I know, I had to live through it.

However, the newsreel is quite authentic in its portrayal of the mighty wind that blew away the folkie cobwebs as soon as the Beatles appeared on the scene.  You could compare it to one of those movies that starts in black and white and suddenly changes to color when Modernity In All Its Youthful Glory hits the screen. There's a palpable sense of something in the air as soon as the Beatles footage arrives.  It's worth sitting through five agonizing minutes of Johnny Todd He Took A Notion and Maggie May just to feel the skull-peeling effect of the great leap forward as the Spinners fade out and the Beat Groups fade in.

Speaking of whom, there's quite a lot of high quality footage of The Searchers in the studio recording Sugar and Spice a couple of years earlier. The studio arrangement looks very primitive, but when you see the engineer capture the performance on reel-to-reel and then take the reels over to the disk-cutting equipment you see equipment that Jack White would cheerfully kill for.

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Not that Jack needs all that equipment any more. Jack's proposed adventure for Record Store Day (on April 19th) is to record direct to acetate at Third Man's performance room, rush the acetate over to United Records Pressing and press vinyl records in time for the fans to take a copy home with them. Quite a brave thing to do, if there really isn't an intermediate tape, unless he's located the bloke pictured above, now with fifty more years of experience in cutting discs....

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Songs about gnomes

Although I've never watched Game of Thrones, I found myself reading this*: Please Shut The Fuck Up About Game Of Thrones, by Clive Martin in Vice.  Mr Martin does not like GoT, because it is fantasy, and apparently fantasy is for unhip people. 
I guess my real problem is that most things fantasy-related seem to come from a very conservative, dated worldview. They remind me of car trips, bars where the bartender wears corduroy, school trips to theme parks, and people who wear "SMEG OFF" T-shirts.
In passing, he mentions Pink Floyd's Piper at the Gates of Dawn, which is a bad thing because it has something to do with boarding schools and Tolkien. 
While the Music Room Crew back at my middle school were wigging out to The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, I just couldn't get past the Tolkienisms and mythological allusions. Granted, I couldn't relate to Chronic 2001 that much, either, but that seemed like a document of a world that actually existed somewhere, rather than some ridiculous boarding school fantasy.

I was a bit puzzled by the Tolkien reference, so I went to the effort of looking up all the words on the album, and there's nothing about Tolkien in there. There is, however, a song about a gnome. The gnomes get everywhere.


I've always seen gnomes as a fundamental part of British hippieism.  Your American hippie was politicized, with Vietnam on his mind and a lineage extending back to the Beats. The quintessential English hippie grew up in Canterbury in a comfortable middle-class home with a shelf full of Enid Blyton in the kids' room. Noddy and Big Ears were part of the literal furniture before they became part of the mental furniture and eventually they came back out in the sub-sub-Tolkien lyrics of hippy bands.








My own favorite hippies, Tyrannosaurus Rex, never managed to pen a song about gnomes as far as I can tell. Marc Bolan did, however, write two short stories about moles, which were read on their albums by John Peel himself, who is not, as it turns out, all that great a reader.

I reckon that moles are Toad of Toad Hall enough to count as a form of gnome.

My People Were Fair - Story reading by John Peel

Unicorn - Story reading by John Peel


*Thanks, I think, James Nicoll's More Words Deeper Hole

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

The feldspar view - The Kills on art

Alas, my favorite band The Kills aren't doing much in the musical arena at the moment, but they continue to stay in the newspapers.

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Jamie Hince done up as Leigh Bowery (Alison did not pose as Lucien Freud.)

On March 24th, the Guardian ran a short video feature of Jamie Hince and Alison Mosshart talking about the greatest duos in the art world. (Or Double Trouble, or the most controversial duos - there may not have been many print words in the feature, but the headline nevertheless managed to appear in triplicate, and not the more obvious trick of feldsparian duplication.) There's not much on the page apart from the clickbait and the video, so I've embedded it below for your convenience.



Although they're grown adults, there's something adorable about watching Jamie and Alison cycle in on a bicycle built for two.

Oddly they did not talk about the double act who tried to turn into each other - Genesis Breyer P Orridge and Lady Jaye.  I saw their documentary a year or so ago and lo, it's available on YooToob.



Back to the Kills. Alison Mosshart made the news again today, with a New York Times Style Magazine feature on her own art.  ("The Kills' Alison Mosshart Reveals Her Artistic Side.") She paints between gigs. Apparently there's a lot of waiting around time involved, which she uses to make her art.  The article has a sample of her work. Most of it reminds me of the skulls the Kills did for BlackBook Magazine's offices in 2009 - I wonder where they are now, and how much the magazine could get for them? The odd one out is the drawing of pretty polka dot horses, and it's one I wouldn't mind having myself.

Alison is showing her work at ArtNowNYC, 548 West 28th Street, 2nd Floor, New York through April 26th.


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(The skulls from BlackBook)

A Surrealist Alphabet

My dad used to recite this.



It's Clapham and Dwyer's A Surrealist Alphabet from 1934. It's a bit obscure in places (but probably wasn't when it was written, although I do have to wonder about Jaffa Oranges before the war - were they really that well known in England?).

Luckily Wikipedia has transcribed it for us:



A for 'orses (hay for horses)
B for mutton (beef or mutton)
C for 'th highlanders (Seaforth Highlanders)
D for 'ential (deferential)
E for Adam (Eve or Adam)
F for 'vescence (effervescence)
G for police (Chief of police)
H for respect (age for respect)
I for Novello (Ivor Novello)
J for oranges (Jaffa oranges)
K for 'ancis, (Kay Francis), or K for undressing
L for leather (Hell for leather)
M for 'sis (emphasis)
N for 'adig (in for a dig, or infradig)
O for the garden wall (over the garden wall)
P for a penny (pee for a penny)
Q for a song (cue for a song), or Q for billiards (cue for billiards)
R for mo' (half a mo')
S for you (it's for you)
T for two (tea for two)
U for films (UFA films)
V for La France (Vive La France)
W for a bob (double you for a bob)
X for breakfast (eggs for breakfast)
Y for Gawd's sake (why, for God's sake)
Z for breezes (zephyr breezes: see West wind)


Don't know why the YouTube uploader EMGColonel is so sniffy about it though; I thought it was funny. Mind you, I was about five when I first heard it. Took me years to find out what some of the words actually meant.

More poor little rich boys

While I'm on the subject of how heartbreaking it is to be a billionaire and have no possible way of letting the world know how great you are, Charles Murray, the conservative pundit and famous face of "scientific" racism (he wrote The Bell Curve, with Richard Herrnstein) has a book to plug at the moment, and so is appearing in various places making sonorous and yet somehow still deeply stupid pronouncements about how to live life well.

Biology blogger PZ Myers weighs in on Murray's Salon outing here. (Summary: PZ has an unfavorable opinion of Murray.) I was so put out by Murray's Wall Street Journal piece that I had totally failed to notice the Salon one even existed.

Said Wall Street Journal article by Charles Murray is entitled Advice for a Happy Life, and consists of soppy platitudes that are unlikely to supercharge the Youth of Today.  Example:
Learn How to Recognize Your Soul Mate
Ready for some clichés about marriage? Here they come. Because they're true.
Marry someone with similar tastes and preferences. Which tastes and preferences? The ones that will affect life almost every day.
It is OK if you like the ballet and your spouse doesn't. Reasonable people can accommodate each other on such differences. But if you dislike each other's friends, or don't get each other's senses of humor or—especially—if you have different ethical impulses, break it off and find someone else.
Groundbreaking sociological reasoning, I think you'll agree. But what caused my incandescent rage was a little item, number four, called "Eventually stop fretting about fame and fortune". Part of it is about David Geffen, described as a billionaire music and film producer:
[H]e said, "Show me someone who thinks that money buys happiness, and I'll show you someone who has never had a lot of money." The remark was accompanied by an ineffably sad smile on Mr. Geffen's face, which said that he had been there, done that and knew what he was talking about. The whole vignette struck me in a way that "money can't buy happiness" never had, and my visceral reaction was reinforced by one especially memorable shot during the profile, taken down the length of Mr. Geffen's private jet, along the rows of empty leather seats and sofas, to where he sat all alone in the rear.
Oh dear god, my heart bleeds for Mr. Geffen. How incredibly heartrending to imagine the billionaire all alone in his leather-seated, sofa-endowedvprivate jet with his ineffably sad smile. 

Trying to give Murray the benefit of the doubt - I don't know why I should, but I did - Cliche #4 in the article is in some small way trying to tell young people that money doesn't get you everything, which is true. But as the song goes on to say, "What it don't get, I can't use."


And anyway, it doesn't excuse David Geffen himself and his astoundingly self-serving comment. Money itself may not buy happiness, but it's a lot easier to find happiness if you have the money to ignore the little unhappiness-generating things like creditors, lack of housing, food insecurity.

Unless Geffen is working hard at having no friends to talk to on his private jet, I'm going to put his remark down to the reflexive self-preservation instinct of the filthy rich: "Don't envy me! This is hard work! I get no pleasure out of it at all, I swear! Don't take it away from me or all this angst will fall on your gentle and unpracticed shoulders!"

The Kochs, their voices crying in the wilderness

You have to feel sorry for the poor old Koch brothers. Multi-billionaires who repeatedly attempt to buy elections with literally hundreds of millions of dollars in ad spend and more direct methods, and yet they get no respect.

Sad Charles Koch was so upset at his lack of a public voice he had to write an editorial in the Wall Street Journal about how pathetic it was that nobody loved him.

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(Screenshot from WSJ, via Daily Kos)

The poor dear. He only has billions to buy time and space in the media AND have the WSJ provide him with a giant megaphone. No wonder no one can hear him.

Oh, and he has a Senator who will read his Op Ed out loud on the Senate floor so it can be entered into the official record.
In Sen. Moran's apparent view, poor Mr. Koch—the petrochemical billionaire who has pumped hundreds of millions into projects denying climate-change, undermined federal regulations and nudged legislators into passing a plethora of laws helpful to the corporatist agenda in dozens of states—doesn't have a big enough forum to present his views.
So, the senator, whose top campaign contributor just happens to be Koch Industries, decided to give Charlie a boost by reading aloud the man's Wednesday op-ed in The Wall Street Journal. If only constituents could get as fast of action on fixing their potholes.
(From Daily Kos)

But apart from the billions, the Wall Street Journal at his beck and call and the Senators who do his bidding, how will the poor man get his word out to the avid masses? So sad.

Monday, April 07, 2014

i09 Game of Thrones Crash Blossom

A crash blossom headline on i09.

crash blossom photo

It says, "We reached the "everybody's broken past fixing" part of Game of Thrones". 

I read it as "We have reached the part where we fix everybody's broken past" - which is a jolly nice place to be at.  Then I read the first paragraph:
Remember when all the characters on Game of Thrones were shiny and new? Now Tyrion Lannister can't get laid in a whorehouse. His brother Jaime has lost his groove. The Stark girls have death in their hearts. Jon Snow's a traitor forever. Last night's premiere showed these characters aren't just broken, but broken beyond repair.
It seems that what it really means is "From where we are now, it appears no one can be fixed because everyone is too broken". That's not such a great place to be.

Mind you, I've never watched nor read Game of Thrones, so I don't really care. It's a great headline though.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Jack White: High Ball Stepper teaser track and cool video

Jack White's Third Man Records have dropped the news that Jack is releasing an album in June.  It's called Lazaretto (he hinted at that in a Vault chat back in August 2013) and will also be released in a limited format with a mound of tchotchkes for the 20th Vault release.

The first single and title track, or a single and a title track (possible zeugma alert here) called, obvs, Lazaretto, will be released later this month. For some reason, the label put out a teaser track on video with the announcement.



The track, High Ball Stepper, is an instrumental featuring Jack getting deeply grungy on his guitar, which  is presumably en-grungenated by his favorite Bumble Buzz effects pedal.

The video says it's directed by Third Man Grand Fromage Ben Swank and cinephile James Cathcart. (I actually don't know who James Cathcart is but Nashville Scene called him a cinephile and it's good enough for me.) For the video it appears they rigged up nine speakers in a cabinet (facing upwards) and poured in mixtures of corn flour (corn starch) and water, along with food coloring in approved Third Man hues. Corn starch and water mixture is anti-thixotropic, or non-Newtonian, which means, in a nutshell, if you dip something into it, it acts as a liquid, but if you hit it hard, it acts as a solid. Putting it on a vibrating speaker cone means that softer sounds produce an interference pattern, as they would with water, but louder sounds spank the mixture into a semi-solid 3D creature shape that dances like a psychedelic Bill Plympton character until the sound gets quiet enough for it to collapse back into the cone (for which I am sure it is truly grateful - the forced dancing looks exhausting).

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Some of the effects in the video

Unfortunately (for me at least) the liquid patterns in the video don't produce the classic Chladni's Figures, but the video makers have thought of that and at several points they insert video of the standard Chladni apparatus, a plate, fixed in the center, on a speaker (or something...hard to see what is underneath it), with salt or other particulate matter scattered on top of it. Cleverly, the salt starts out in three white stripes (Jack White III's symbol, lll) and bounces into the classic standing wave patterns as the pitch changes. The video does an excellent job of looking exactly like Jack's instrumental is producing the patterns and standing waves in real time, but there's just one bit where a bit of liquid plops back into the speaker cone exactly in time with the music that makes me think it's all painstakingly edited together by hand to look simple; if so that's the opposite of what Jack White normally does.

High Ball Stepper sounds like the sort of name Marc Bolan would have come up with. 

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Wankard Pooser

Let's take a moment to review the life of Wankard Pooser, the felicitously-named Floridian and stormy petrel of the economy bloc.  He was born in the equally remarkably-christened town of DeFuniak Springs, had ten children and was a politician, amongst a plethora of other things.

In a 1958 article, Pooser referred to himself as a "famous author, statesman, [and] poet". It was also said that he was known around his city of residence as a "lawyer, ex-legislator, ... noted local after-dinner speaker, wit, [and] critic". His headstone at Pope Cemetery reads:

The one and only
Wankard POOSER
She love me too
27 Sep 1893
22 Feb 1978
To be continued
(From Wikipedia)
It's one of those names that only an American could have, like the similarly-apellated Buford Pusser, of whom I have heard because he died in a Corvette, and Death Cars - particularly Corvettes - are a thing of mine. Sheriff Buford Pusser, who Walked Tall, was a famous lawman, which is another peculiarly American thing, unless Detective Superintendent Leonard "Nipper" Read would fit the bill. (Probably not.)

 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On



It's been quite an exciting evening for earthquakes. According to KNX 1070, there have been several this evening - a fairly serious one centered around La Habra and several fore and aftershocks. Down here in South County we only felt the biggest, the 5.1 at 9:09 this evening.

It's such an odd feeling - the ground attempting to crawl away from underneath you.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Pretty Things, Promotional Video 1969

Here's a promotional movie for The Pretty Things, 1966.

I find it astounding how many music videos there are that were made before there were music videos that are only now being seen, after videos themselves are over and done with.

I can't quite figure out what's going on, but that may be because I'm not sufficiently groovy.





As well as their own albums, the Pretty Things recorded for films, under an assumed name. According to Wikipedia,
Electric Banana was a pseudonymous 1967 album of the band. The band recorded this album and two subsequent ones for the De Wolfe Music Library. De Wolfe provided stock music for film soundtracks. The Electric Banana music wound up on various horror and soft-porn films of the late 1960s, such as What's Good for the Goose (1969). When the album was released, the stage name the Electric Banana was used to hide the band's identity. [2]

Due to the magic of the interwebs, the entire album is available on YooToob.



I have a copy of What's Good For the Goose and I have to say you'd be disappointed if you rented it as either soft porn or horror. It's one of those British movies of the time period, of an ilk with the "confessions of a window cleaner" films, which features Norman Wisdom as a little old unhip guy who wows the hippy scene, man, and gets the chick.  I've never known what people see in those trolls-get-great-girls movies (possibly because I'm a chick meself) but they sure are popular - the modern equivalent would be the Manic Pixie Dream Girl selflessly furthering the ambitions of the unlucky man out touch with his emotions.

Goose doesn't just feature the music of the Electric Banana, it actually features performances by the Pretty Things, as the Electric Banana, having one of those rave-ups, or perhaps freak-outs, that were dee rigger in youth films at the time.

And of course, that's available on YouTube too. The drummer with the band in the movie is, of course, the one and only Twink. He does appear to be truly both raving up and freaking out, so Norm got his money's worth (twelve and six, true fact) at the Screaming Apple Discotheque. (First number starts about 22:50, next one (the better track) at 1: 05:20 and one at 1:26:20 or so.)



This movie reminds me that I haven't seen that shade of honey blonde hair since the mid-seventies. I wonder what happened to it?

Friday, March 21, 2014

Always be closing

I have The Passive Voice (subtitle: A Lawyer's Thoughts on Authors, Self-Publishing and Traditional Publishing) in my favorites folder, in case I ever want to read a lawyer's thoughts on authors, self-publishing and traditional publishing, which I rarely do. However, I'd emptied the entire internets by midday today, so I clicked on it, and found that these days, the lawyer's thoughts are mainly cut'n'paste jobs of other people's thoughts - presumably Fair Use snippets, since this is a lawyer after all - with a "read more at the link" clicky underneath the piece.

That's how I found myself accidentally redirected to The Toast, a blog I'd once had in my favorites but eventually realized that even when the internets are otherwise empty, it's still not worth reading The Toast. I mean, there's washing to be folded and pond filters to clean waiting for times like that.

The Toast piece is about authors, self-publishing and traditional publishing, which is how The Passive Voice got a hold of it, I guess. It's full of the usual advice - I've mentioned before that many writers hate other writers and want them to give up and this one isn't any different. The Toast person writes a blog post on starting a small press that begins with the advice "Hate writers, hate books, hate publishing". Ookay. Goes on to say,
Content is promotion. Nothing makes me want to buy a book less than an author on Facebook saying “Have you read my book yet? Here’s your chance!” What does make me want to buy their book, though, is a funny or compelling Twitter feed, an interesting photography Tumblr, a great ask.fm account. This is how books are sold these days, and it’s a wonderful thing.
Really? Urgh. Do you really pick a writer by his or her ask account? I mean, Herman Melville's would have been all about baleen and spermaceti.  I can imagine Jane Austen having an interesting Twitter feed, but I think she'd probably have ended up as a regular writer on OhNoTheyDidn't and never got around to writing any novels after all. The Bronte Sisters would give up novels to write for Huffpo (or the Mail Online, or Jezebel) and Charles Dodgson would have a magnificent Tumblr filled with pictures of little girls playing in his yard and would eventually get run out of town by a suspicious dad. 

The work - the book - is now not allowed to stand by itself. It's required that the author be interesting in themselves, 24/7. Being "on" all the time seems to be the current thing. A friend of mine is looking for a job, and the advice - farm your LinkedIn contacts assiduously, have an elevator speech, have a 30 second, 3 minute and 30 minute version of your life story rehearsed and ready, perfect a sort of biographical judo to SEO your way past the automated resume-readers that employers all now use, always be closing - is identical. We've all become yuppies, except older. Ouppies.  They always said of social media, that if you couldn't tell what it was selling, the product is you, but they meant that it was selling your data, not that it was actually *selling* *you*. Now, you're selling you yourself.  Your work record itself is not sufficient to show you are capable of working. 

I remember going to some panels at the 2013 Comic Con. One pitched exactly this sort of thing - that you, as a writer, had to establish and maintain a Brand, and feed it tidbits constantly, like a little fire, to keep it burning. "Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. Need X amount of followers. Build a brand," reads my notes. Then we went to a panel with real writers on it - Chuck Palahniuk, Cory Doctorow and Patrick Rothfuss, for instance. Cory was definitive that a real writer did not work on his "brand" or spend his time networking. Of course, he does have a famous Twitter feed. And the whole of Boing Boing as a megaphone. 

I've seen all of Stanley Kubrick's films, and I might read his biography if it dropped in front of me, but I certainly haven't sought it out. I've seen all of Ridley Scott's but I don't subscribe to his Twitter feed (or even know if he has one).  I used to subscribe to The Vault, as there was a promise that Jack White would write a blog and chat, and I could watch spontaneous videos from Jack White's bands and get cool offers, but when the last two failed to materialize, I gave up the membership. Mr. White still turns up there to chat now and again, but I found out I don't really care (and I get the impression he doesn't either) - as long as the music's good, I'll buy it. His opinions were just like everybody else's when it came down to it. As for an ask.fm account, I'm sure he'd teach us a lot about cutting a vinyl record, but life's too short. 


 

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Crimea river




 photo BiDdUW5CQAA-PzQ_zps58cb8b77.jpg

Putin: Knock knock.
Obama: Who's there?
Putin: Crimea.
Obama: Crimea who?
Putin: Crimea river.
Obama: ____...
Putin puts on sunglasses: (•_•) ( •_•)>⌐■-■ (⌐■_■)
Putin: YEEEEAHHHHHH!!!!


Not sure who made this - I've seen it in various places without attribution. Whoever you are, you are very clever and win one (1) internets.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Is this poll a searing indictment of our youth?

A couple of weeks ago, we learned that 23% of Americans polled think the sun goes around the earth.  That seemed quite reasonable to me. I've watched the sun pretty closely over most of my life and with all the setting and the rising it keeps doing, it does seem to be going around the earth, and at a fair speed too. People were probably thinking about that rhythm - what it appears to do once a day. I'm sure if you phrased the question in the format, "Does the sun go around the earth once a year, or does the earth go around the sun once a year?" you'd get a completely different set of answers.

But today we learn from the LA Times that a new poll found:
27% identified "gigabyte" as an insect commonly found in South America. A gigabyte is a measurement unit for the storage capacity of an electronic device.
  • 18% identified "Blu-ray" as a marine animal. It is a disc format typically used to store high-definition videos.
  • 15% said they believed "software" is comfortable clothing. Software is a general term for computer programs.
  • (Amongst other things.)

    This is according to a survey by Vouchercloud.net whom I had not heard of until now, and that may well be the point.

    This seemed less likely to me, so I polled everybody who's awake at the moment in my house (one of the geckos, three hundred fifteen crickets and me) and asked them what they thought. The results of my sci-o-tiffic poll are as follows:
    When asked dumb questions on the internet, 104% of respondents make shit up for the lulz. 
    Also, a majority wanted another carrot as they're feeling a bit thirsty tonight, and a  vocal minority said he fancied a handful of crickets. (Actually he said, "Gecko! Gecko!" but I think that means he wants crickets.)

     photo 3949cf9c-c9a7-495e-b20b-ca8ceb473344_zps31eca5e7.jpg

    A gigabyte, yesterday*



    *(I didn't make this up.)



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