Sunday, January 30, 2011

Carmen Mirandas Ghost

Carmen Mirandas Ghost is Haunting Space Station 3, the book!

Carmen Miranda, was a Portuguese-born Brazilian samba singer and actress popular in the 1940s and 1950s.  Dubbed The Brazilian Bombshell, she was the highest-earning woman in the United States at the time and is famous for the fruit hat outfit she wore in the 1943 movie The Gang's All Here.

As we can see from the cover of the book Carmen Miranda was not content with being dead and is livin un-lavida loca in space.   The astronaut appears quite shocked to see Carmen Mirandas gigantic apparition singing  her Tico-Tico no Fubá from The Copacabana Film, while using the space station like some sort of carnival hula hoop, and quite rightly so.

This book is a collecton of short stories, there's also a song and album released by one of the authors, Leslie Fish, with a similar title.

No it's not a book on tape.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Take My Ham

I was listening to the radio in the car not that long ago and I am absolutely convinced that in Living On a Prayer, Bonjovi sings:

"I doesn’t make a difference if we're naked or not"


"Take my ham we'll make it I swear”

Turns out I’m not the only one.

Yeah, lick my ham makes more sense.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Invasion Day

Today is Australia Day! The day that we officially celebrate the founding of Australia, or as it’s referred to in the record industry, "The Landmass Previously Known as New Holland".

Today Australians commemorate the arrival of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove in 1788, the hoisting of the British flag there, the proclamation of British sovereignty over the eastern seaboard of New Holland and probably the shooting of some Aborigines. 

Eighteen years after Captain Cook told everyone he was the first person to find this new country, the British parliament decided that being the other side of the earth, Australia would be a good place to dump convicts as it was deemed far enough out of sight from the upper classes.  So off they all went, down under.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Most people don’t realise that the zeppelin is making a revival both as a freight transport ship and cruise ship.  I propose going one better, a smaller scale household airship to tackle the problem of congested traffic on our roads.  This "Family Zeppelin" will be an ideal alternative to the family car.

The first zeppelin flight occurred on 2 July 1900, three and a half years before the Wright brothers famous flight.  Later while the Wright brothers were still arguing with governments and the media as to the authenticity of their flying contraptions success, Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin  was making plans for the commercial market.  In 1909 the LZ-6 (no the L doesn't stand for Led) became the first zeppelin used for commercial passenger transport.  By 1914 the world's first airline, DELAG, was founded and had purchased seven of Count Zeppelins zeppelins.

Everyone went off zeppelins after the Hindenburg disaster in 1937 because it was such a visually memorable crash.  The thing to remember is that the Hindenburg was filled with hydrogen and also had a flammable outer coating paint with properties not unlike to rocket fuel which seemed like a good idea at the time.  Modern zeppelins are filled with non flammable helium and made of lighter, stronger materials like kevlar and PVF rather than wood and steel.   On top of that modern auto navigation, better propulsion systems and being solar hybrid, really make owning a zeppelin the best transport of the future and they could be parked on the roof.

Zeppelins are definitely the way to go for the future of transport and we can look forward to television shows like Top Gas and Pimp My Inflatable.  Also for those over compensating, the massively phallic shape more than makes up for a sports cars short comings.  But the biggest case in favour of the family zeppelin is the awesome city skyline it would create.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Nanas Porcelain Collectables

Turns out that, without realising it I'm regularly highlighting an artist I like.  While I haven't exactly planed it that way... here's the latest artist I like.  It's UK artist Jessica Harrison.  I especially like her interpretation of traditional porcelain figures, the kind you see in Nannas display cabinet.

She does a all sorts of mixed media sculptures (like human skin dollhouse furniture) as well as some other art stuff.  You can see more of her work at her web site, unremarkably called Jessica Harrison.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Mark Antony

Classical literature, especially Shakespeare, can be a bit heavy going to read, but it's not until you really get into it that you can appreciate the emotional richness of the characters.  You can see what I mean in this speech of Mark Antonys from Julius Cesar.  This is at Cesars funeral where Brutas has left Antony to speak to the crowd and they are calling for revenge.  I've included some of the crowd dialogue to give it context.

First Citizen:
O most bloody sight!

Second Citizen:
We will be revenged.

Revenge! About! Seek! Burn! Fire! Kill! Slay! Let not a traitor live!

Stay, countrymen.

First Citizen:
Peace there! hear the noble Antony.

Second Citizen:
We'll hear him, we'll follow him, we'll die with him.

Good friends, sweet friends, let me not stir you up
To such a sudden flood of mutiny.
They that have done this deed are honourable:
What private griefs they have, alas, I know not,
That made them do it: they are wise and honourable,
And will, no doubt, with reasons answer you.
I come not, friends, to steal away your hearts:
I am no orator, as Brutus is;
But, as you know me all, a plain blunt man,
That love my friend; and that they know full well
That gave me public leave to speak of him:
For I have neither wit, nor words, nor worth,
Action, nor utterance, nor the power of speech,
To stir men's blood: I only speak right on;
I come to spread joy; when she arrives let me know.
People ask if I can get it up in the morning.
I tell them are you kidding I'm envious of a stiff wind.

Oh hang on. No, that's from a Rodney Dangerfield movie.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Bat Theme

Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, Batman!
Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, Batman!
Batman, Batman, Batman!

Val Kilmer looked OK, but no one packs a pair of tights like Adam West.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Swords by Candlelight

I'm trying not to talk to much about the flood because the talk about it is everywhere else.  but with the flood waters rising here, the other night our power was cut off until morning leaving me to occupy myself in the middle of the night by candle light.  I thought about reading a book but the idea of setting fire to the pages and waking up the rest of the house with burnt screaming put me off that.  I ended up doing some sword training in the candle light, returning to a plan of doing 3000 cuts each day (in my underwear!).  I've found 3000 cuts a day is a bit harsh on my shoulders so I'm only managing about 3 or so days in a week for now.

The following morning parts of the CBD were flooded and I went looting to see how bad the damage was.   The water is not far below the levels to the 1974 flood. Here's a comparative picture of one of the local pubs, one from 1974 and one I took while the water was still rising another meter or so.

Wtih the dams at 190% capacity the local council has still not yet removed the level 4 water restrictions from the drought one and a half years ago.

Friday, January 07, 2011


I’ve been looking up words at, which is an online dictionary where people vote on the definitions of popular words and phrases.  I’ll try to post a new one I like each month.

A disease like anorexia, no matter how tan a person is they never think they are tan enough.

"Oh my God have you seen Tara Reid lately? She needs to check herself in for treatment of that tanorexia."

What’s with that fake tan orange skin dye?  Do some people think looking like The Thing from Fantastic 4 is sexy?

Tuesday, January 04, 2011


In 18th century London the eel was an abundant, cheap, nutritious and readily available food source from the Thames.  Eels became a staple for London's poor, particularly in the East End where cockneys were also abundant.

The favourite eel dish was jellied eel, where the eels would be cooked and then allowed to cool in the cooking broth which would solidify into a jelly as it cooled.  I’m sure it tastes as good as it sounds.  Other common dishes were hot stewed eel or fried eel with mashed potato.

The first "Eel Pie & Mash Houses" opened in London in the 18th century, and the oldest surviving shop - M Manze - has been open since 1891.  Although jellied eels is not as popular today as in the past, it can still be ordered in the few Eel Pie & Mash Houses that remain.

Now you can fully appreciate the subtle genius of The Mighty Boosh as The Hitcher sings his song about eels.

"It's a mash up! A pie and mash up!"