Dynargh dhe'n Blogofrob

Monday 21st April 2003

Disaster! Paramount appear to have stopped showing Seinfeld every day at 9:30pm. I am at a loss at what to do - would you believe that often I would spend the whole day looking forward to that 30 minute window in my life? I don't think even the repeats of This Life on BBC2 can make up for this. The Simpsons is always on before I get back from work, and watching anything else is, much of the time, akin to repeatedly stabbing a rusty compass in my eyes. I may be forced to do what those unwashed children always suggested in the Why Don't You? theme tune (surprisingly I can't find a single link to that show)- meanwhile, however, I'll be encouraging others to sign the Seinfeld online petition.

14 - posted at 18:49:31
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Friday 11th April 2003

As, like most pages on the internet which serve no purpose, this little corner of Paste is an egotistical and self-centred (stop me if I'm being tautologous) exercise, I propose to start building up a little gallery of people with my name (yes, this idea is completely unoriginal and passe, but godammit, so am I most of the time). The first guy is a dead US general from the Civil War.

Robert Allen, US General

He was born in 1811 and died in 1886. He fought in the Mexican War and then was a Union quartermaster in the American Civil War, apparently.

13 - posted at 13:04:35
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Thursday 10th April 2003

I'm having trouble believing this is genuine. Stop Press, members of parliament are 'cool', 'down with the kids' and very very 'patronising'.

12 - posted at 16:35:59
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Wednesday 9th April 2003

On Saturday I went to London Zoo with Claire and Jim. The last time I visited was years ago but recently have done 'the Scotsman's Zoo', which consists of wandering around the fence peering at what can be seen from Regent's Park - it's not bad actually - Camels, Bongos, Wolves and, um, Cows are all visible for free. But of course, it's only when you pay you 12 to get in that you can see the monkeys - and it's them that people seem to be obsessed with these days - whether its Satanic looking midget primates, stealing food from each other and persecuting birds trapped in their cage, Chimps wanking, Tamarins picking their nose or Orang-Utangs baring their arse at you to make you go away (actually this happened to me at Dublin zoo, rather than London) monkeys (and by that inaccurate description I mean the whole gamut of primates, apes etc) are always the crowd puller.

And my favourite discovery on Saturday was a kind of monkey called a potto. These live in the bunker under some monkeys and rats called 'Moonlight World', which contains nocturnal animals, and is just slightly too dark inside. I knocked over a couple of children in there - not because I couldn't see them, but it was a good excuse. The Potto are nocturnal, furry strange bush baby type creatures, small with cartoon-cute faces and disproportionately long and skinny limbs. They move very slowly and gracefully and when clambering over each other they appear to be engaging in some slow motion capoeira, except not as wanky. There was one hanging upside down behind the glass, that unfurled itself, until its whole body was dangling from the roof, like a bat. Then, liked a stoned, but proficient, acrobat it spread each limb out in turn, stretching and turning, as though moving underwater. Finally after it had finshed doing this, it brought its whole body up again into a furry ball, still hanging from the roof.

My perennial favourites - apart from the urang-utans - were also in residence: Two beautiful tigers, but miserably imprisoned, and the penguins. The zoo however, seemed a bit tired - it lacked a certain buzz, despite the hoardes of ill-mannered and care-free children, whoses parents did not appear to mind as they dropped litter on the floor, feet away from rubbish bins or banged impatiently on the glass of whatever animal's attention they demanded. And the aforesaid tigers, other big cats and large animals are a depressing sight in their glum enclosures.

One of the things the zoo is lacking are elephants, removed recently after a keeper was crushed by one. That and that they don't have enough room for them - which, although I missed the grey leg-faced men, I found quite reassuring.

11 - posted at 14:41:17
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Monday 7th April 2003

The dodgy major, his coldly calculating wife and the smug but sickly university lecturer have been found guilty of cheating on 'Who Wants to be a Millionaire?' The script at the above link makes amusing reading, but makes me wonder about how vulnerable TV quizzes are to cheats and how many people have got away with it in the past. Coughing is surely too obvious for anyone to successfully get away with - as perhaps shown by the Ingram conviction. Would it have been subtler if the accomplice, supposing he was facing the contestant, worked out a gesture for each question? So for example on question 1, when Tarrant ran through the options, the accomplice could scratch his head at the correct option. For question 2, he could cross his arms, for 3, tug his left earlobe etc. The contestant could indicate he had seen the gesture by mirroring it. Perhaps this would fall foul of studio lights blinding the contestants, but I can imagine such a system working in other shows. There is an entertaining Tales of the Unexpected story by Roald Dahl called "My Lady Love My Dove" which contains a devious but fairly simple method by which one can cheat at Bridge.

Of course, myself, I would never cheat, except in tedious computer games, which are much more fun once you're invulnerable, so you can for example, drive around London on the rampage at your leisure (even The Getaway gets dull after a while) - otherwise my experience of cheating consists of taking advantage of the youth of my sister in a game of Happy Families. She must have been about 5, I was 7 - she hadn't grasped the fact the that if only two people play Happy Families it is clear which cards the other player has. I always insisted on having first go and always cleaned up.

10 - posted at 16:48:07
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