Friday, July 29, 2005

The Power of Greyskull

All this disengagement stuff is driving me crazy with worry and I can't bear it anymore, so I've decided that we all need to think about cartoons instead. Specifically, those 80's and early 90's classic cartoons like She Ra and He Man and Dogtanian and Dungeons and Dragons and the best of all, G-Force/ Battle of the Planets. Please note that I can sing the theme tunes, including lyrics, to most of these. It's a skill.

She Ra (Princess of Power) is, as you can see from her outfit, a feminist figure. She was created so that girls would feel empowered - you can be a sexah princess in a really low cut dress AND be a kick-ass heroine with a big sword. She Ra was He Man's twin sister, and hung out helping him fight Skeletor. My younger sister loved She Ra so much she wore a white dress, had a plastic sword, and used to stand on a big stone in our garden holding the sword aloft and yelling "By the power of Greyskull". She is very embarrassed about this hilarious fact, so naturally we remind her all the time.

Now, this is Mark from G-Force, or Battle of the Planets as it was later named. I had a secret crush on Mark, who was the leader of the entire G-Force group and was tall, with dark hair, had a great uniform, flew a fast spaceship and kicked a serious amount of ass, and did clever nerd things. Basically, he's just like Aviad if you imagine the spaceship to be a sort of Renault. The story was really innovative and unique, and involved an evil guy who wanted to take over the galaxy.

Now, Dogtanian and the Three Muskehounds (get it? They're dogs!) was just brilliant. It went on for about a zillion episodes, and none of them disappointed. Dogtanian was supposed to be French but in the British version he had an American squeaky accent. My sister and I would play swordfighting games after watching this, during which she would mysteriously turn into She Ra (Princess of Power) and invoke the Power of Greyskull. She was confused.

Well, now I feel much better, and there are so very many more great cartoons that if I get worried again, I can write about more of them.

Just before setting off

Two days before taking everything and leaving, one needs to think about the coming month. It's easy to think about "next month" in every-day life - If something needs to be done for two weeks from now and it takes a few hours to complete, one would usually delay doing it to sometime closer to the event itself.

So, buying a birthday present to one's dad, for example, shouldn't bother someone a couple of weeks ahead. You know what to get him, and you'd get it to him when time comes.

Things like that come to mind when dealing with something like the disengagement. Most of the week, we won't be at home, and it's a new situation for us. And now, I'm sitting here burning DVDs (all legal of course) for his birthday.


No need to hide it. Some people are going to the disengagement. Some do not.

Some people are happy about going, but most of them are not. I hear a lot of people ask others "But a left-wing person such as yourself shouldn't have a problem doing the evacuation, as you support it".

The answer is fairly simple: If you were supporting the death penalty, would you be willing to be the executor? It's even more than that. These are people who have done nothing wrong, literally. They followed a call of their country to go and settle a border area in order to gain demographic control over it. They built their house there, their families grew there - And now they need to see it all goes away. It's not that their lives are ruined completely, but that's not the point. It's like taking away from you that chess board that your grandfather gave you before he died. It's not the chess board: It's the sentimental.

However, one thing I don't agree with is the comparison to Auschwitz. With all due respect to these people's suffering from this act, they are not being led into death or even work camps. They are being compensated (if it's enough is arguable, but irrelevant to my current point), they are being led to new homes (again, arguable if it's the same, but irrelevant right now), and they will keep living in the Israeli society. Do these people who use the Holocaust trademark even realise how many Holocaust survivors or second/third generation survivors they upset with this? What about Their feelings?

The final point I have for now is the reason behind this. Some people claim that if this would have provided with immediate peace, it would be more reasonable to do this action. I agree, but do not agree with the opposite: That without an immediate peace this is wrong. I can't really explain it besides reminding us all the reasons we left Lebanon - It wasn't for peace, it was so children, daughters, fathers and mothers would stop dying over that border. The difference now is that we have villages and settlements inside those borders, and that the area is actually an Israeli border. But still, over a million palestinians are living there, enough of them hostile to our settlements. Our soldiers, trying to protect these settlements, get injured and sometimes even die. Our numbers are much less in almost a jokingly manner: around 7000 people live in these settlements.

To make myself clearer, I don't mean they are irrelevant. I just mean that the reason we're doing this is to leave a Hostile Ground. Saying that, I am aware to the Kasam threat. I do hope that the government would provide us with the security required after the evacuation happens, as it's a neccessity. They will not stop just because we left, and we need to be protected and feel that the government is also making our cities secure, and not just acting randomly towards an obscure peace goal.

This should, more or less, poise my personal view about the disengagement act. I will try to add more points of view as things advance there.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Pigging out

Today, the canteen surpassed itself. It offered an exciting and exotic fusion dish: PORK SUSHI.

That's right folks. Pork, wrapped in sushi rice, with an outer coating of seaweed.

And I also saw the wonderful Oy! Bagels sporting a sign that advertised Oy! Bagels Traditional Bagels - Try our Oy! Ham and Cheese Today!

Oy! Ham?

It's a food desert here. A desert, I tell you! A desert with thousands of Starbucks.


Today, instead of going to a sports day as we always do on Thursday mornings, we went to see the Carlsberg Factory in Ashkelon.

I must say, it made me realise two things:

  1. Not watching TV gives me the bliss of not watching commercials that show a sexual relationship happening just because of the exchange of glass bottles containing piss.
  2. If I was a factory claiming to be very sterile and clean, I would check to see there are no turned-over, dirty containers lying around when a big group of visitors comes along.

Also, a friendly sign in the factory said "Please, for your friends sake, speak Hebrew!". Now that was great. I should put one in my office.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

In Praise of the Chick Pea (Part 1)

To read Aviad’s version, you’d think that our lives consisted of near disasters followed by comforting intervals of mass chick pea eating. It isn’t quite like that although, naturally, Humos plays a very large role in Aviad’s life.

I don’t want to relive my journey to Gatwick too much because, even in retrospect, I know that I only made my flight by a real miracle. Here’s an overview of the horrors of travelling in terroristville:

1. Bus from Stamford Hill to Finsbury Park tube. Happy, happy, happy.

2. Victoria line one stop southbound. Scared sounding driver yells at us to evacuate, because of ‘passenger action’ on the train in front of us.

3. I get off the Victoria line.

4. We get told to get back on the train.

5. We get screamed at to evacuate the train immediately.

6. I get an overland train back to Finsbury Park, where I am forcibly evacuated by armed police, who seal off the whole station and surrounding area. No-one will say what is happening.

7. I try to get a taxi – there are none.

8. I get a bus to King’s Cross.

9. King’s Cross Thameslink is closed. I hear there are 4 more bombs, by calling Aviad who looks at the BBC online.

10. I get the world’s slowest bus to Kentish Town Tube/ Thameslink, which is further North than I started from.

11. When I get to Kentish Town, the station is closed and there are armed police outside it.

12. I take a lot of money out of an ATM and try to get a taxi.

13. There are no taxis.

14. I start to cry. No, really. I do.

15. Then someone tells me that Thameslink is working and you can access it by going do wn an alley and climbing over some rubbish bins.

16. I think I am actually in a nightmare but I go down the alley, climb past the rubbish bins and run up some crumbling steps to the station.

17. I learn that there is engineering work on the line and trains to Gatwick do not stop at Kentish Town.

18. Luckily, a Russian speaking American girl, also trying to travel to Gatwick, has a train timetable and works out the trains we need to get there.

19. A train comes early. We make the connection at Blackfriars, which by a miracle is still open.

20. I get to Gatwick literally just in time to check in.

The Magical Week That Has Passed

A magical week has passed.

Joah has been to Israel and we had less than a week, even - Four days - But they were nothing like the last 30 days since she was last here. So, to make a sort of montage of what has happened in the last (unfortunately few) days:

  • Transforming my house to a war-room after explosions in London stop most underground traffic, making reaching Gatwick really difficult.
  • Cleaning my house with Ido, then leaving for Oded's wedding.
  • Picking up Joah straight after the wedding, fast-drivin' back to the Tel Aviv place.
  • Buying tent and sleeping bag - Preparing for a camping trip.
  • False rat alarm.
  • Eating too much Humos and Fasole Batota (However spelled) at my grandma's.
  • Not finding camping site.
  • Car broken into. Window smashed and lock destroyed. Fixed window. Eating more Humos as we fix the car.
  • Going to the beach, stung by a jelly fish.
  • Getting lost in Jerusalem trying to find the "Center of Town", or rather a specific location in the mentioned Center, without really knowing our ways in Jerusalem.
  • Trying to find a good restaurant in Modiin, unsuccessful at finding it through maze-city. Eventually ending up in a Humos restaurant.
  • Listening to Beni's newest. Avah doesn't like.
  • Trying to make Sushi cakes with Mackarell fish. Joah doesn't like.
Yes. It has been a busy week.

And I miss Joah...

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Security in London

After 7th July, you'd have thought that London would develop some kind of security mechanism on its stations. Talking with Joah about this, she claimed that since 3 million people use the tube every morning, having some security over the tube stations is impossible and would shut down the city's business area, as everyone would reach work 2 hours later than usual.

However, ever since that horrible terrorist attack, there have been numerous bomb scares, causing tube stations to be delayed and sometimes stopped, causing millions of people to be late for work. More than that, today 4 minor explosions caused the city's transportation system to reach a halt. At the moment no injuries are reported and I sincerely hope that none would, but this is ridiculous. A guard at the enterance of the station might have delayed millions, but it would've prevented this damage in routine life.

And on a personal note: Joah is supposed to reach the airport and was evacuated from one of the lines because of this bombing. She wasn't injured, thank god, but she Is delayed, and with her others, I am sure. The plane has already been delayed by 30 minutes and I do hope it's enough.

We have to meet before the begining of August.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Women's magazines

Women's magazines: why?

I find it astounding that anyone would spend £4 or whatever the latest rip-off price is, for 50 pages of glossy advertisements for scented, shiny things, some celebrity gossip, and some articles and 'how to please your man in bed' quizzes that they've been recycling since 1976.

Every month, they have the same articles:

1. A photograph of a bovine-faced model wearing a sailor suit or a gypsy costume next to photographs of cheaper versions of these clothes from High Street stores, entitled "How to copy the latest supermodel style".

2. Photographs of crushed up lipsticks and eyeshadows that no-one seems to notice have been the same since 1982

3. A quiz involving your Horoscope, that of your hapless boyfriend, a photograph of a naked, muscular bloke with a shaved chest (ugh) and the title "What His Star Sign Reveals About His Special Pleasure Zones".

4. Summer editions will have articles on your "Bikini Type", reassuring you that even if you look like a beached whale on steroids you can still wear a bikini providing you 'emphasise your best features' and then showing you a picture of a stick insect supermodel in a miniscule two piece bathing suit.

5. Winter editions will have an article on how not to make a fool of yourself at the office X-mas party, an occasion at which, if you fail to follow their simple guidelines, 'some girl from Accounts' will 'get off' with 'that fit bloke from marketing'. The same copy has been used every year since 1976 even though 'Accounts' has been called 'Finance' since 1989 and no-one has parties in offices anymore - you have to pay to go to some horrible themed bar.

6. Photographs of shiny objects.

7. Banal, pointless factoids about inane looking, sheeplike celebrities, plus their 'exclusive' dieting tips.

I have a theory that they make the pages of these magazines shiny so the women will be attracted to purchasing them. But then I, apparently, am a cynic.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Get rich quick

Last night, as my friend and I were walking to the Tube after this event , we were forced to walk past this : an enormous queue of people dressed as witches and wizards anxiously awaiting midnight, when the latest Harry Potter book would be 'unlocked'.

Obviously, the main thing that I resent about the Harry Potter phenomenon is that I didn't think of it myself first; had I done so I would be a multimillionaire, with my own yacht and teams of servants. Clearly what we should all be doing is trying to write a rather underwhelming children's book. So, to inspire you, here's the synopsis of the plot of mine, "Herbert Poncewater and the Fiery Turnip":

Herbert Poncewater is an ordinary kid from suburbia but one day is visited by Zaggagaggthon, the Turnip King, and is taken on a magic carpet to the Guzzipple land, where he learns that he can fly. Herbert has to save the elves from the Creeping Darkness by finding the secret fiery turnip, which is invested with magical powers and is safeguarded by the evil fairy GayLord in the Tower of Krap. To do this, he must travel to the Mystical Unicorn Prince before the KolonBlo giants awake and return to the West...

All I have to do is pad it out for about 900 pages, and then sit and watch the cash roll in.

Rats over a cup of Coffee

So, as I was checking out Sun's latest developments on the Looking Glass Project (very cool thing indeed), I heard a muffled noise from the bathroom. Disregarding it as water being flushed by the neighbour (You know how it affects the whole sewage system sometimes), I kept on surfing.

After a time, I heard it again. It sounded more like something being dropped into water than flushing, so I decided to check it out. Remembering that awful scene from Dreamcatcher, I approached with caution to the toilets where, to my surprise, I saw a RAT jumping into the toilet! Assuming it probably got From there, and being terrified as hell, I shut the toilet down and flushed the water.

The toilet seat is now closed, and I am scared out of my wits about it. For now, I try not to think of it. Called my land lord, and she said that tomorrow she will take care of it, and also will call city hall. Hopefully it won't happen again.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Java and Mac OS X

When I bought my Mac, I made perfectly sure that Java, my prefered programming language, was a valid programming language there. And so, I found that Apple claims itself to not only support Java, but to improve it to "work superbly".

Months later I was suprirsed to discover that when J2SE 5.0 came out, with all the Ease of Development features, Apple took it's time in releasing it's own implementation of the new standard. More to it, when it Did release it, they demanded money for it. While it's their own right to do so, I was feeling abused: If I had a Linux or even a Windows platform, I would have gotten my J2SE 5.0 with the rest of the gang, for free.

Now, when JDK 6.0 is at the doorstep, with so many cool features like the Generics DataSet, I don't even try to imagine I'll have my chance to see Mustang out on the Mac before I have children. But, I never imagined Apple would start with moves to disengage itself from Java altogether. Or maybe I'm just reading it wrong.

I wonder what's going on in those Apple-Heads' minds.

Fainting Goats Association

I'm pandering to Aviad's fascination with Associations and sharing with you this wonder: the International Fainting Goat Association .

Fainting goats are named because, if mildly startled, they faint and lie on the floor unable to move or do anything. Just like Aviad when it comes to washing the dishes.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Spongebob is not afraid!

A website has sprung up for people to send in crazy photoshopped images, some funny, some weird, some lame, showing that the people of London are not afraid of terrorists. Or of bombers, if you work for the BBC, who are not allowed to use the word "terrorist".

So, be like everyone's favourite animated sponge, Spongebob, and his crazy pink companion, whose name I forget, and be not afraid. Mind you, I never saw Spongebob travelling on the Tube - but he's still a kickass role model for us all.

Monday, July 11, 2005

Dig for Victory!

When I got to work today, after the usual ritual of being trampled on the Tube by several obese people, and a remarkably short man carrying a remarkably large golf umbrella, I was gratified to learn from newspaper headlines and the BBC that my mood, and that of my fellow 7 million Londoners, was 'defiant'.

I learned that by going back to work, I was recreating the true spirit of London during the Blitz, and showing those ruddy terrorists what's what, eh.

The newspapers decided to run some special articles by investigative journalists about people's mood on the Tube, reporting that people stood or sat there, reading newspapers and books and generally not looking at each other. One reporter, who evidently travels to work each morning in a chauffeur driven limousine, remarked that "...twice a recorded woman's voice advised us to hold on tight because the train was about to move forward slowly and then stop suddenly." Whoah. Like, different.

Although the papers reported that Tube commuters were filled with a World War II-esque community spirit and cameraderie, this did not extend to the angry looking lady who smacked me with her handbag so she could get a seat on the Northbound Victoria line. I hope she got the message when I stared pointedly at the advertisement for the British Association of Anger Management on the wall...

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Squeaky clean

This van was spotted in Highgate. If you want something "cleaned", phone the KGB. They'll get the job done. Know what I mean, mate?

The saga continues, Episode VI

I'm starting to feel like I'm in some Star Wars kind of fight here. Soon we'll have cartooned characters helping us in our quest.

This actually happened a week ago, but so much has happened since that I have overlooked writing about it. I hope I'll be forgiven, but then again: It's not your blog, and I'll write what I want to when I want to! I don't need this bloody pressure!


So, let's get to work. The day continues where I left off: In the morning I was in the Salame 53 office. Disappointed, I went to work. I called the information service to discover the number to the MoIN office in Jerusalem, as obviously the MoIN office in Tel Aviv couldn't possibly know the correct number. Callimg the MoIN office in Jerusalem rvealed that actually there Is a way to employ foreign workers. They have separated offices to different types of foreign workers: Construction, Healthcare, Industry, etc. I asked what type of work is Translator and they refered me to the Industry number, telling me to call on Sunday.

Sunday comes, and after countless of times calling the numbers they gave me, I decided to call back to the main office. This time, I don't know how or why, I was refered to the department's CEO office, which of course answered. I explained Them the need for a foreign worker that would do translations. They said that it's in the Industry Foreign Workers department, and gave me a Different set of numbers, but said I should call on Sunday (As it was rather late in the afternoon).

Monday comes. I call the numbers I was given by the CEO office. They gave me three numbers, and I was performing a round robing technique on their numbers, manually obviously. After a while, I noticed noone is bothering to answer the phone. I call the CEO office again, and when the secretary answers I go ahead and tell her yet again about the need for a translator etc. She tells me I should call the Industry Foreign Workers department, and gives me a Totally Different set of numbers. At this point I get slightly curious and ask her why I was given a different set of numbers yesterday when I asked the same thing.

She said: "Yes, yesterday they were answering on Those numbers you were given, but Today they answer on These".

I thought I was going to flip with laughter.

I called the new numbers, and even though the first two weren't answering (three numbers again) one was busy. So I decided I'd be a nag and called it over and over again. And yes, you heard correctly - BUSY. It's a government office, and they can't afford the simple electronic secretary machine that gives you crappy music while saying from time to time "You are number 1512 in the queue".

Eventually, after literally an hour and a half of calling and getting a busy tone, I got a free tone and was answered. I got the information needed, including what is a "professional". A professional is someone with degrees in the area of his/her job, AND someone who will get over 14,000 shekels when working in Israel.

That's all they had to say? I am really worried about MoIN. Laying out these set of rules to the Salame office would have saved so much trouble. And even if they didn't hear of the Email, Fax, or even dictating it over Phone, I bet these short rules would've been transfered by Morse code, with error correction, faster than it took me to search for them all over Israel.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Free SkypeOut Day

Some companies I realy love - And that's even though I am aware they only want world domination and that interferes with my own plans.

And today, I found out about Free SkypeOut Day. Just be on the lookout for those days on the Share Skype site, and you can talk for free!

Something Completely Different

Here's a Kibbutz Kamel Karavan.

Thursday, July 07, 2005


A couple of hours ago there were several bombs detonated in London, on the tubes and on some buses. I missed it by about 20 minutes, as I decided to get into work early.

When it happened, the BBC reported that the explosions were just due to power surges, to try to stop everyone panicking, but now we're getting more and more news and it's looking worse and worse.

My office is right in the centre of London so I'm currently not allowed outside. All public transport has been suspended so even if I could go out, there's no way I could get home.

I'm still trying to contact some of my friends, as mobile phones have been disabled to stop more bombs being detonated.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

A valued and loyal customer

There is something worse than British food, and that's the customer service that British companies provide, or fail to provide. It wouldn't be quite as bad if companies were honest about how crap they are, but marketing and public relations speke has infected them to such a degree that they just gush enthusiastically about the ridiculously poor services they offer. Then they put the prices up.

This morning, I received a gushing, enthusiastic letter from Dan Cole, Head of Internet Access at THUS plc, my ISP. Dan was delighted to inform me that as a loyal and valued customer, I was having my service upgraded (the small print then told me the service would probably stay the same and won't happen until September) and that if I did not "choose" to accept this fantastic, exciting offer, my internet would be cut off in two weeks.

The even tinier print stated that if I do accept the offer, I sign a contract to pay THUS plc £25 every month for a year or face a penalty charge of £100 plus £23 per hour for any 'maintenance'.

I couldn't see why Dan was bubbling over with so much delight. Well, possibly he's thinking of the yacht and the sports car he's going to buy with the profits he makes from his loyal and valued customers.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Crazy happy pleasure filipinos

Inspired by the amazing photos of someone I used to work with in Moscow , (who, yes, makes art of a quality I can never hope to aspire to) Aviad and I started taking snaps of random crazy things we saw in Israel, and here are a couple of them:

Crazy happy pleasure filipinos:

And here's the creation of some religious grafiti artist:

British Food is Bad: It's Official.

French President Jacques Chirac has come out and said what we've all been saying for years: British food is bloody awful. Jacques apparently had a bit of a laugh with his mates Vladimir (Putin) and Gerhard (Schroder) by saying that Britain's food is the worst in Europe.

Sadly, this has caused some major knicker-twisting on the part of Tony (Blair) and the rest of the guys backing London's 2012 Olympic Bid, and has also resulted in some newspaper articles that made me feel more nauseated than I felt yesterday when the staff canteen offered the following range of sandwiches:

- Crispy Bacon and Goat's Cheese
- Ham, Cheese, and Tomato
- Pork and Apple

The Times has produced an article waxing lyrical about how wonderful London is , and describes the area in which I live as being something of a cross between the Garden of Eden, a multicultural paradise, and a place where poor people do what rich people think that poor people ought to do, viz. Work Hard And Be Jolly Grateful. My area, apparently, has a "a magnificent river, the Lea (or, if you prefer, the Lee) ... along with its valley, full of birds and cycleways." He omits to mention that there have been several drive-by shootings this year, and that the 'magnificent river' is actually a stagnant canal that stinks of sewage and has abandoned shopping trolleys floating in it.

Maybe I'm living in a parallel universe?

Monday, July 04, 2005

Do you want coffee? Number.

As I was installing HP's drivers for the new LaserJet 4200 printer in our office, I was presented with a Hebrew installer. Some companies think it's neat, so they check out the default language of the system and use a resource file to translate their software.

At one point, I was asked (in Hebrew of course) a question like "Would you like to install the printer as a local printer?". The printer was a network printer, so the answer to that is No. Surprisingly, the only two answers before me were כן, and מספר. To those readers who can not read Hebrew, I would translate: Yes and Number.

Now, I can see how this could have happened. The translator sat down and saw the resource kit. Seeing two words, "Yes" and "No", he decided to translate Yes as the positive answer to a question, and No as the abbreviation to the word Number. What I fail to understand, however, is how this was bypassed by the Quality Assurance team.

This leads me to two very quick answers. The first, being a consumer of numerous HP products, I already noticed that the company has NO quality assurance team. The second, no-one in HP's Israeli department tried the Hebrew installer.

The latter answer turned out to be correct: The installer was unsuccessful, and re-running it froze my system to a total halt. Only after running the English installation (by picking it specifically from a sub directory in the installation CD) I managed to get the drivers installed correctly and the printer to start printing.

The question I ask now, in this post which is too long anyway: If this is a network printer, having a web page of it's own as an interface for configuring and managing the printer, why doesn't it allow you to download the drivers from the webpage? It would make so much sense, and be so easy for the users. Another answer to this, as I have encountered by using HP's marvolous product NNM is that HP don't care about user interfaces nor about the user being comfortable using it's systems.

All that said, Joah and I use an HP camera, yet it still cannot connect to the computer on the first try.

The Meaning of Liff

I tried to find this book for Aviad when we were in the Geek Store a month or so ago, an endeavour which involved me in searching all around the shop whilst Aviad delivered a 15 minute non-stop monologue on why it was imperative that I should purchase some really quite outrageously expensive boardgames, and the comparative merits of various types of dice; and then dragged me onto the street screaming that he needed the bathroom.

And who said romance is dead?

Anyway, I discovered that The Meaning of Liff is actually online, so you can read it here.

Basically, it's a book that takes lots of British place names and recycles them as definitions of things that don't have specific words already, but jolly well should.

Here's an extract for those of you who are too damn lazy, or don't have enough of a sense of curiosity and adventure, to follow hyperlinks - this is something that annoys me nearly every day:

Technical term for one of the lame excuses written in very small print on the side of packets of food or washing powder to explain why there's hardly anything inside. Examples include 'Contents may have settled in transit' and 'To keep each biscuit fresh they have been individually wrapped in silver paper and cellophane and separated with corrugated lining, a cardboard flap, and heavy industrial tyres'.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Stuff about Things

Today was a typical summer's day (i.e. it rained) so in true summer fashion I spent it in a pub drinking vodka Pimm's and celebrating the fact that following Live 8 poverty is now history.

We reflected on the immortal words of Snoop Dogg: "There's a lot of rich people in the world and a lot of them are just selfish."

Anyway, we have decided to make our own wristbands as a response to the overwhelming fashion trend that these things have become. They're going to be for sale on eBay just as soon as we can decide on the slogans, but we're currently market testing the following ones and are open for more suggestions:





I AM FASHIONABLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

As a charity fundraising professional, I feel a bit redundant now that poverty is history, but I guess there are still lots of other important causes to support, like helping prisoners who are tortured by having bad children's literature read to them (see number 6).


While reading one of my favorite web-comics, AppleGeeks, I noticed an application recommended there. Following the link, I found a small, comfortable, still in beta little software that actually helps you do things. Fast.

It's not easy to explain what it does, but if you have a Mac - Download it.

If you don't have a Mac... Go here for the starter's pack.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

What happens if you play too many computer games

I used to be addicted to Doom II. So I was really very excited when Aviad found and downloaded some classic Doom II levels for me! That's true love, folks! It meant I could spend even more time shooting up those horrible pink grunting monster things! And those monkey things that throw fire at you! And those floating heads that spit fire at you! And Aviad was very good at helping me find the red key that one time.

But I have clearly played too much Doom because today as I was running to the park I saw a hideous vision under the railway bridge, that for a spit second looked a lot like this:

OK, so it turned out to be a couple of guys from the local council, with some blowtorches attached to backpacks, that they were using to clear weeds and grass and other evil, threatening things from the riverside path, and not two horrible 10 foot fire throwing mutants from space. But it was scary for a moment!

(I think I might stop playing Doom.)