anotheranon: (books)
What I've been reading:

Kim Newman's "Anno Dracula": What would have happened if Dracula hadn't been killed at the end of Bram Stoker's novel? Newman plays in the London of 1888 with every prominent vampire and Victorian you can think of, so if you're familiar with the genre and time period it's an adventurous running in-joke - but if not there's lengthy notes at the end that describe his influences. I heard about this novel years ago but wasn't able to get a copy until it was reissued this year. I hope the sequels come out as well!

Jeff Sharlet's "C Street: The Fundamentalist Threat to American Democracy": this is a continuation of his research into the Christian Right elite that he started in 2008's The Family. Using interviews with members and the Family's own documentation, he demonstrates that these aren't the outrageous Bachmanns and Perrys, but wealthy, well positioned (usually) men who are content to work slowly to achieve their goals of rolling back social progress: in their world LGTBQs would go back into the closet, the poor would be content with their lot, women would shut up and act nice, while they paternalistically run everything. What's most chilling is how firmly they believe that they are God's instruments, confusing their own egos with divine will. Not a happy read but very much recommended.

Leslie Kean's "UFOs: Generals, Pilots and Government Officials Go On the Record": I know, I know: most UFO books are by nutty believers or stern debunkers, but this is one of the most sane, sober treatments of the subject I've ever read. Shoving the assumption that UFOs = aliens aside, the contributors to Kean's book recite their experiences and suggest that unknown things in the sky need to be taken seriously as flight hazards and defense threats. Excerpts here.

Jon Armstrong's "Yarn": I'm not done with it but I'm including it anyway because it's a compulsive read - I almost dread getting to the end because it means I won't get to read Armstrong's clever use of fashion/textile language to describe SeattleHama, a future capital of sex and fashion, with violent sales-warriors and specialty yarn-stealing (and hallucinogenic drugs that make you see everything as fabric. I want some of this drug). A tailor is on a mission to get an illegal fabric to ease the suffering of a former lover, and his story is told in flashbacks along the way. It's described as "fashionpunk", and you can read the first chapter online.
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anotheranon: (alien)
I saw "The Men Who Stare At Goats" last night and was mightily amused. A great deal of what makes the humor work is George Clooney's earnest delivery of his role as a spy who really, truly believes himself to be psychic.

The ads bill it as "based on a true story" and it's amazing - and disturbing - how closely the movie resembles the efforts of the U.S. military to train soldiers in psychic warfare. My fellow Americans, your tax money at work:


This is part 1 - YouTube should have all 5 parts


I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Proof that there is woo, stupid, and crazy everywhere, even in the seats of power.
anotheranon: (alien)
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Neither, and neither. Unlike the majority, it seems, I think UFOs/other weird stuff is a legitimate interest that doesn't necessarily say anything about the interested party's sanity or lack thereof.

Having said this, there are a lot of whackos into The Weird who get a lot more press and are a lot more "interesting" from a tabloid journalism POV than people who have a cautious, skeptical interest.

Full disclosure: I'm one of the skeptically interested. I don't think it's ALL made up, but I do think a lot of the things seen (particularly near military bases) are either mistakes or the government's super-secret stuff. Large bureaucracies aren't great, it seems, at keeping secrets, so it makes sense to me that slip ups where the tech shows up in front of civilians can and do occur.

And yeah, I think the U.S. govt. probably is interested in unidentified aerial phenomena, or at least were during the Cold War - it would be foolish from a political/military standpoint not to be. I rather suspect that instead of some grand coverup conspiracy it's more likely that world governments don't know any more than the public does.

I do think both UFO "believers" and avid debunkers are both often too enamored with their own conclusions to look at the subject rationally.

So, do y'all think that I'M visionary or bonkers? Or both? :P
anotheranon: (alien)
...like it's sea monster week!

Seriously, it's nice to read about cryptozoology from a scientific perspective and am pleased to see at least one zoologist acknowledging the overlap that exists between cryptozoology and mainstream zoology.

Related ('cos it used to be a "cryptid") especially for [livejournal.com profile] tommdroid: komodo dragon feeding scrum!
anotheranon: (strangelytroublesome)
Given that I've had a couple of dreams in the past few weeks about obsessing over a stranger's suicide, I find this news tidbit a bit, er, jarringly timed.

I don't have it, honest....
anotheranon: (neat)
= Awesome :) Found in the acknowledgements at the end of "A Dirty Job".

addiction

Feb. 6th, 2008 07:16 pm
anotheranon: (fencing)
I know I've been fencing too much when 1) I initially read this as "Fabris source help" 2) after a weekend of reading Buffy graphic novels, I had a dream where Giles was my watcher and I ended up asking him what weapons he fenced and telling him he ought to come to my club...

Really, honestly and for true, I DO have a life outside the fencing strip. At the moment I'm rather pressed to figure out what that might be, but I do have at least a few other things going on :P Maybe one day I'll post about them.
anotheranon: (surprise)
The 5 Most Horrifying Bugs in the World. I'd fact-check before getting too wound up about them (I doubt ants can scream - no vocal chords), but I defy anyone to find anything cute or cuddly about any of these (I'm looking at you, [livejournal.com profile] tommdroid ;) )

The prose is pretty funny though - imagine Quentin Tarantino writing for National Geographic :P

punk tudor

Jan. 23rd, 2008 09:08 pm
anotheranon: (specialhell)
But it's couture, sweetie! </eddie-patsy> (YouTube) The first couple of minutes have the biggest flat caps and flappiest doublets you'll ever see....

Though, a correctly tailored black leather doublet with silver studs and safety pins could conceivably be cool....
anotheranon: (strangelytroublesome)
Oh, you are kidding me!

Also this, for a quadruple take - my gut says it's an insult to both the cookie and the bacon involved.

Surely these are signs of the apocalypse...
anotheranon: (alien)
My inner geek's just gotta see this before it's gone. I'll likely try to combine it with a visit to the rest of the library to look at some Jamestown docs.

Also want to go here and get my hot little hands/photocopier on this.

Yes, this note is mostly a reminder for myself :P
anotheranon: (neat)
My 8 year old self (hell, perhaps myself now) would SO wear one of these. Found thru Panda Head DC Style, like I need another reason to windowlick at Etsy :P
anotheranon: (specialhell)
A masterpiece of 80's retrof*ck (is that a word?) - "Knight Rider" burlesque:



The dancing doesn't start until about 2:00, but if you're not sure what differentiates burlesque from stripping those first 2 minutes provide a fair explanation. I don't think the audience (or some of the judges) really "get" it, but Hasselhoff seems to love it.

Thank [livejournal.com profile] vree, who inspired me to look up the accursed thing :P
anotheranon: (neat)
If you don't read Wired's Table of Malcontents, perhaps you should. But not if you plan to have a life beyond it:

Ancient Birth Control - sadly the plant was so popular it went extinct :(

The Battle of Helm's Deep - as performed by Muppets - Toronto 2003 peeps, was Silver Snail the bookshop we went to?

The Lonely Sea Monster - delightfully morbid. If you like Lemony Snicket, you'll like this (I'm looking at YOU, [livejournal.com profile] jlsjlsjls!)

B Movies go Art House - don't miss "Le Lebowski Grande" or "300: The Criterion Collection"

Saved the best for last - Hieronymous Bosch action figures! C'mon, you can't tell me these aren't the coolest beasties ever! Someone send these to Seth Green and the other Robot Chicken [Google Video] creators stat! I want to see the Tree Man have a showdown with the Care Bears....
anotheranon: (alien)
I'm late learning about this but given my near-obsessive interest in the LNM as a kid, I have to link to the May 28 video. Frankly, I don't think it's clear enough to be sure of anything, but at least the news readers have nifty Scottish and northern English accents :)

Full disclosure: Most 6th grade girls want ponies. I wanted my own Loch Ness Monster, especially if it was a plesiosaur :P More specifically, I wanted to live by the loch and just watch until something happened and then take pictures and write about it, Jane Goodall-style. Trust me, such a lifestyle sounded absolutely reasonable to my extra-geeky 11 year old self :P

Speaking of reasonable, Skepticality examines pro and con new-skool scientific style.

Also worth noting is that wherever there is weird, there is $ to be made - check out the "mascot" for Rock Ness. I imagine the locals have a lot invested in keeping the mystery going.

I'd like to read the book they discusson the podcast linked above - most of what I've read on the subject over the years was by "believers" and it would be interesting to get another perspective.
anotheranon: (alien)
No, really - I missed this exhibit when it traveled north of here as "Body Worlds" and I'm not going to miss it a second time!

Anyone wanna go see some (plastinated) dead bodies this summer?
anotheranon: (alien)
I got 9/10 for the cryptozoology quiz; 8/10 for bigfoot.

Clearly I'm losing weird cred :P

Found at Cryptomundo.com, online clearing house for hidden/mythical(?) animal news.

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