May 31, 2005

Say, would you like to discuss Metroid Prime cheat codes over a drink?

As pathetic as that line my sound (and that's actually an IMPROVEMENT over my usual pickup lines), for all I know it might work at the uWink Media Bistro, an upcoming restaurant chain by Atari founder Nolan Bushnell. The concept is:

Imagine a Chuck E. Cheese for grown-ups—with booze and Caesar salads instead of balloons and singing animatrons. Bushnell has built "party tables" where six customers can play each other in the same game, and tournaments where diners in any of the restaurants in the chain can compete against each other...

The first store is opening this fall in Los Angeles, but if one opened on the East Coast, I'd be willing to give it a shot, since I already dig Dave and Busters, and this sounds somewhat similar. I wonder if they'd do pub games (pool, darts) as well. Or maybe huge kiosks for Dance Dance Revolution, that'd be real fun after a couple of Mind Erasers.

Not so sure if I'd try the restaurant-wide tourneys, I'd probably not impress any potential date after some nineteen-year-old kid 0wnz me in MechAssault 2.

P.S. BTW, here's Metroid Prime cheat codes.

May 27, 2005

So THAT'S the reason!

Picked up through Slashdot that the Department of Homeland Security is preparing to test a new type of airport scanner that can see through clothing.

Really, guys, why don't you just get Cinemax?

Though this would've saved an embarrassing scene for Derek Smalls.

May 25, 2005

Chain chain, chain...

The following music questionnaire, to which I supply my pasty, geekified answers, is thanks to Your Right Hand Thief.

Total size of music files on my computer:876.5 megs. A mere 175 songs.

Last CD I bought was: Man, I think I've given away more CDs than I've bought this past year. Probably Feedback, by Rush.

Song playing right now: I'll let Progged Radio decide! Let's see, Confronting the Devil, by James LaBrie's Mullmuzzer? Sheesh. I shouldn't have let Progged Radio decide. No iPod, or any MP3 player, BTW. It'd take a $500 computer upgrade to handle a $60 MP3 player.

Five songs that mean a lot to me (one per band):

Rush, "Natural Science": About 30 Rush songs could've gone here, but this one goes long, has a killer odd-time riff, plenty of four-syllable words, and a plea for artistic integrity. Works for me.

Primus, "Spegetti Western": My all-time favorite college song. Also a radio staple for road trips at that age. Ah, memories.

King's X, "Picture": I've been this song's bitch for nine years.

R.E.M., "Fall on Me": And I've been this song's bitch for nineteen years.

Radiohead, "Paranoid Android": God loves his children, yeah!

And to whom I'll pass it on, let's see, war2k, John Keegan dot org, G.D. Frogsdong, shari at An old soul..., and let's see if this can bring The Granite Blog back to us.

Now, NASA, this is when you stick in the R2-D2 noises...

Buried in MSNBC comes word that Voyager 1 has definitely passed the termination shock and is now within the heliosheath, the region of space which serves as the border crossing between our solar system and interstellar space.

Which is all well and good, but last month there was a warning that the funding for the Voyager missions were being scrapped and I haven't heard anything since. Maybe some intrepid press-savvy PR guy for the project is planting good news to keep it going.

Whatever works.

May 24, 2005

"This...may be the worst idea since Greedo firing first."

Now I know the new Star Wars has got everyone excited, but really, kids, let's play safe, all right?

Two Star Wars fans are fighting for their lives after a home-made lightsabre blew up in their faces.

Mark Webb, 20, and 17-year-old Shelley Mandiville were hurt as they set alight petrol poured into two fluorescent light tubes.

They were believed to have been filming the prank on video but it went terribly wrong when one device exploded.

Because, you know, swinging fluorescent tubes at each other isn't dumb enough, no, let's fill those bad boys with flaming gasoline.

For a frame of reference, if the stunt you're trying is something that backyard wrestlers wouldn't do, then it's probably dangerous.

At least they didn't go see Kill Bill.

May 22, 2005

"In your face, Grim Reaper!" "Lousy, ineffective Reaper..."

As if I'm not in enough geek heaven with the new Star Wars film, this Slashdot article mentions that Futurama might be coming with new episodes straight to DVD. The real article is Slashdotted for now, so I'm not sure what this entails yet, but if Matt Groening wants to separate me from my cash, this will sure as hell do it.

Update: Got Futurama? is now accessible on a hit or miss basis, and it's been updated with a post from Billy West himself indicating that preliminary negotiations at Fox have started concerning one or more direct-to-DVD movies. Of course, everything's still early and it could fall through, but if it does come to pass it would be more fun than a barrel of super-atomic mutants.

May 21, 2005

Now this is clever political theater...

On the way to my poker game yesterday, when I passed my friend's house on the way to the store to pick up some treats, I noticed he had hung an American flag up. But something looked...different about it. I had no doubt immediately that it was a political statement, cause my friend's very active and outspoken. For example, he's head of his local chapter of Billionaires for Bush.

So I took a closer look.

Very clever.

May 18, 2005

Let's see what's on...

"So, Al, have you decided?"
"Now don't fucking pressure me, you cocksucker! I refuse to solve this fucking conundrum without some fucking rumination! Now, if I decide one way, there is potential of exposure to the foulest of detritus this fucking camp can avail. But to absolve myself may be interpreted by some that I am a whey-faced cowardly sponge, venturing only on the worn path."
"You know, you can get pepperoni on half the pizza."
Coming soon from Fox, Pamela Anderson stars as a fruit-stand operator, in Melons!
"Would you like to *giggle* see if my casabas are ripe?"
"Actually, I'd like to comment on the inherent hypocrisy of a network airing blantantly sexist humor while also pandering to extremist conservative political groups."
"Okay...then why are you staring at my tits?"
"Hey, I can do two things at once!"
"Yorn desh born, der ritt de gitt der gue,
Orn desh, dee born desh, de umn bork! bork! bork!"
"Tudey, ve-a veell meke-a a hemboorger thet testes leeke-a thuse-a mede-a in yuoor fefureete-a fest-fuud restoorunt. Furst, get a beeg bool, und plup in yuoor gruoond meet. Plup! Zeen, poot in yuoor coo breeens und coo speenel flooeed, ploos sume-a penceel shefeengs. Und feenelly, edd feces. Luts und luts ooff feces. Mooshy und guushy. Iff yuoor feces is oold und dry, yuoor hemboorger veell teste-a leeke-a a schuul ceffetereea's."
And now, back to The Surreal Life!
"How do you expect me to do dishes after I was hit by this drywall?"
"Drywall, eh? If I grind this up into a water-soluble solution, I bet I can inject this!"
"Don't be ridiculous. Oh, if only I had the courage to commit suicide."
"And at Papa John's, your pizza comes with free cheesesticks and dipping sauce!"
"That's right, you fucking cocksucker, and if you expect any fucking gratuity you will procure my repast within the hour. And if the vessel ensconcing my garlic sauce is not sealed, I will slit your fucking nostrils! My previous supper from you resembled a whore's bedspread when delivered!"

Some nerd fuel (or "Trying to keep it lighthearted")...

Apparently the perfectly serviceable if somewhat flawed constitutional republic we've got might go down the crapper this week due to some misguided zealots who are obsessed with the teachings of a two-thousand-year-old Palestinian rabbi, so I'm swallowing my bile long enough to post a couple of non-bile-swallowing-geek stories:

* Soon to be confiscated at airports nationwide: the Game Boy Micro!

* Surprised to hear that NASA recently completed a successful test of a solar sail, since I thought that any program with the word "solar" in the title was eliminated. I'm still waiting on the Planetary Society's version.

* I wonder if the ISS astronauts ever saw Apollo 13.

May 15, 2005

Odds and sods...

* As a completely uselessly pseudo-creative dreamer, I envy the speed of which entrepreneurs can crank out crap based on news fads. I've got to start sharpening my Photoshop skills so I can turn around a Cafepress store within the next day when another distraction hits the mainstream.

* As the flowery prose indicates, I picked up Haunted, the latest by Chuck Palahniuk. Really just weird grotesqueries, without a whit of character development. This is a good thing.

* Sorry to hear that Nevsky got ripped off by Echo and the Bunnymen at the HFStival. Hmph. It wasn't cool when Axl did it, and they were at least popular at the time.

* The TWoP forum mirrors my opinion of the Enterprise finale. In the eighteen years of the new Trek in its various incarnations, there was no bigger signal of a crap episode than the holodeck, except maybe the Voyager opening theme.

* Looks like some biochemical engineers have been reading their Palahniuk.

May 13, 2005

I guess at least EVERYONE'S unhappy.

Yep, the base closing report came out; Picatinny was saved but at the expense of the larger Fort Monmouth, and all in all, 3,760 NJ jobs will be wiped out. G.D. Frogsdong has got the NJ perspective well covered. And Daily Kos has got the liberal side well covered. For the conservative perspective, consult your local news.

I was going to bitch that they could leave all the bases if they got rid of missile defense, but hey, they're spending...only 7.8 billion this year.

Well, it is a cut.

May 11, 2005

A lot of people in my neighborhood might soon be really pissed off.

A local issue has popped up, apparently the Picatinny Arsenal (in Morris County, NJ, a few miles from where I live) may be recommended for closing on Friday. Without debating the necessity of the base and whether it should be closed or not (and ignoring the cognitive dissonance inherent in closing up to 20-25% of domestic military bases while increasing military spending), I will say that if it is closed, it is going to hit this local area hard, and not just economically, although the economic impact will be immediate (over 4000 jobs).

This is a red pocket in an otherwise blue state which has sent quite a few of its people overseas. I've seen banners welcoming home some of them on Route 80. The ribbon magnets here are taken pretty damn seriously. Closing the arsenal will not sit well here, to say the least.

And while the liberal wussy-boy in me might want less money for the military, just living close to a base makes me realize the number of people who depend on it. I do not envy the people who have to make these decisions.

May 9, 2005

Review: Juiced by Jose Canseco

Verdict: Don't bother.

I picked this up in the library hoping for a good, fast, trashy sports read, and there was a glimpse of it in the intro, where after Jose says that kids shouldn't do roids blah blah blah he lets loose with this:

Yes, you heard me right: Steroids, used correctly, will not only make stronger and sexier, they will also make you healthier.

ALL RIGHT! Unfortunately, the rest of this short book is nothing more than perfunctory.

If you followed the hoopla upon the release of the book you've heard all the dirt, and don't really get much more here. Canseco tries to make the point that he was railroaded while the media looked the other way with the other big names, which is a fair enough point but doesn't change the fact that he was unapologetically using steroids for his career.

So if you're looking for a fun baseball read, instead of this, may I recommend The Bad Guys Won by Jeff Pearlman, a chronicle of the '86 Mets assholing their way to the World Series.

May 3, 2005

Of course.

Burger war grows with new 15 pounder

Now, on one hand, this is the perfect item for a college baseball or softball team to SHARE following a strenuous game.

On the other hand...

Over the weekend, four men took the challenge, but couldn't get through the entire burger. They opted for doggie bags, instead.

I'm guessing the "challenge" is the same as the restaurant had for its merely-insane six-pounder: eat it in three hours, and it's free. BTW, the article mentions that a 100-pound female college student from Princeton recently was the first to polish off the six-pounder. Too bad it was a while back, it would've made a GREAT filibuster stunt.

In the meantime, I'll wait for the Denny's Dead Llama Pita Pocket.

May 2, 2005

OK, this is a bit much, even for a Doctor Who fan...

MIT is holding a Time Traveler's Convention. Actually, it appears that just a group of sideways-thinking students is holding the "only Time Traveler's convention", because:

Technically, you would only need one time traveler convention. Time travelers from all eras could meet at a specific place at a specific time, and they could make as many repeat visits as they wanted. We are hosting the first and only Time Traveler Convention at MIT in one week, and WE NEED YOUR HELP!

Well. That actually does make sense.

Then again, I probably should just watch less television and listen to more Clash.

(Picked up via Slashdot.)