Monday, November 28, 2005


Thanks to some silliness at the The Disgruntled Chemist, I now know that rearranging the letters of "George Bush" gives "He bugs Gore", "Madonna Louise Ciccone" gives "Occasional nude income" and "William Shakespeare", "I am a weakish speller"??!

This new found knowledge comes from a devilishly clever anagram generator that can be found here. I've wasted too much time playing with this bloody thing today but some of the results are quite hilarious. Here are some topical examples:

George Best = "Go get beers"
Tony Blair = "Tory in Lab"
Saddam Hussein = "UN's said he's mad"
Margaret Thatcher = "That great charmer"
David Beckham = "BV dickhead am"
Sarah Beeny = "Hen by areas"
Kirstie Allsopp = "Praise top skill"
Gary Glitter = "Try get a girl" (Over the age of consent, preferably)
Mad Dogs and Englishmen = "Handsome meddling nags"

Let me know any other interesting revelations...

PS I've got to add this one: Weapons of Mass Destruction = "US team swoops. Finds no trace!"

Sunday, November 27, 2005

More Passings

Richard Burns
Richard Burns 1971-2005

While I, along with legions of others, mourn the passing of footballer George Best and actor Pat Morita (whose script line "...wax on, wax off..." has become part of cinematographic mythology) we must not forget Richard Burns. Richard, who won the World Rally Championship in 2001, died on Saturday at the tragically young age of 34 after battling a brain tumour for more than a year.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Political Commentary

This little slide show is just hilarious, unless of course you are a Republican without a sense of humor...

Nod to The Disgruntled Chemist.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

News Roundup

Gary Glitter

Do You Want to be in My Gang? (No, don't touch me you old perv)
So the egregious Paul Gadd, aka Gary Glitter, has been detained by the authorities in Viet Nam for having sex with a 12 year old girl. This after he fled the UK and then got run out of Cambodia for the same reason. I understand that in Viet Nam child rape has a maximum sentence of death by firing squad. I have no sympathies; he should have been shot for that awful "Rock 'n Roll Part 2" years ago...

Travellers' Advisory
When flying, watch out for chemically compromised, nicotine craving foreigners who may not be aware of the realities of air travel. A cursory search reveals that this kind of thing is not uncommon and indeed something similar happened locally quite recently. Bugger! Now there's another thing to worry about when flying other than the lack of food and deep vein thrombosis.

Beware Bioterrorists
The head of Interpol, Ron Noble, announced recently that it's only a matter of time before mean spirited individuals unleash the horrors of a bioterrorist attack on us. Actually he's been banging this drum for some time (lazy hack/recycled story alert). He's even warning about "suicide bio-weapons". Look Ron, I hope you don't prove me wrong but the concept of a person, deliberately infected with a virulent pathogen such as Ebola, running around in a viremic state long enough to infect large numbers of the public is improbable. Biological weapons have never been very effective in human populations. Americans in particular should be much more scared of a lack of health insurance.

Microsoft Malignancy
Stories of the new Microsoft xBox360, released today, seem to dominate the offside front lead in just about every newspaper and on the planet. Public reaction has been to form serpentine queues of epic lengths with punters willing to put down as much as $600 to ensure ownership of one of these devices. Look everybody, let's get this in perspective. The richest corporation on the planet has run a marketing campaign of unparalleled brilliance to make us believe that without one of these machines our lives will have no meaning. And the press have bought the whole thing, hook, line and sinker and are now running stories on how there may be a shortage. Oh dear, what a tragedy. The xBox is just a toy and there are shortages of real things like clean water. What's that you say? Oh yes, disaster fatigue...!

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

In Vino Veritas

Mad Dog

Now that's more like it!

Ever sane feline (Crotchet) is not impressed by the concept...

Monday, November 14, 2005

Soundfiles: Can Anybody Help...?

I've been trying to put links to some MP3 soundfiles for the last couple of days without any success. I'm not sure if the hosting ISP I've been using ( is being difficult or whether I'm just not getting it. I'd prefer to stay with a free service if possible. If anyone has any bright ideas please let me know -all constructive suggestions will be gratefully received.

Update: I've been fiddling a bit more and the problem is frankly driving me to distraction. There appear to be a host of issues including file format, Mac-PC incompatibilities and code idiosyncracies. Or maybe I'm just incompetent. Comments on a postcard please

Friday, November 11, 2005

Too Old to Rock 'n Roll, Too Young to Die

Ian Anderson

My all time rock heroes, Jethro Tull, were in Seattle the other night and for the nth time since 1968 when I first encountered the then fledging band at the UK's National Jazz and Blues Festival, I trotted off to see them. Ian Anderson and the boys were in fine form playing a mix of (mostly) old and new material, much to the delight of the crowd (I had no idea that many hippy types were still around). Most of the band are now 60ish and are certainly not too old to rock and roll as they so ably demonstrated -may they go on for ever! Here's one of my favourite songs.

Woops! Sorry everybody, I've completely bungled this link to a sound file. I'm not sure what I've done wrong so bear with me while I do some troubleshooting. And there I was thinking I was a clever bugger...!

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Bird Flu

Bird Flu

It seems that everyone in the media and blogsphere (I hate that word) has become an armchair virologist, so to save boring you all to death I'm saying nothing more on the topic...

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

On the Road Again

It seems that I've spent most of this year at work either writing grants or reviewing them. Now I'm off to Washington DC for the rest of the week to do the latter. These sessions are quite intense and my diet on these days seems to comprise mostly danish pastries and coffee (note to NIH; you have some of the best nutritional scientists in the world so how about heeding their advice and laying on better victuals -this sugar and caffeine diet has most of us buzzing around the room with advanced ADD after an hour or two). Next week I'll be hitting the gym. I doubt I'll be able to post until the weekend so bear with me.

So while I'm on the topic, I've updated the "Science and Scientists" links sections with a few additions. I've no time to do so just now but I'll try to say a few words of introduction about the newcomers very soon.

So while I'm away please talk among yourselves or check out the latest JibJab animation. Brilliant!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

10,000th Visitor!

10,000th visitor

Congratulations to the individual above from the UK. You are the 10,000th visitor to site since I went public back in February. By the look of your search terms "Oliver Tiger Model Engine" you are a model airplane enthusiast. Possibly a sad bastard but not as sad as those on the perpetual Sarah Beeny/Kirstie Allsopp quest (oh, how they still flock here). If you ever come to Seattle, I'd be happy to buy you a pint of ether/castor oil/ amyl nitrate. Oh, and you can find a picture of my Oliver Tiger here.