Monday, December 17, 2012

Fuck tha Train Police!


Up until recently, I didn't realise that I needed a law degree to know what my rights are as a train passenger. I'm sure many idiots like me have had the stunning misapprehension that transit officers hold at least some of the rudimentary powers that police do. As I’ve always suspected, they don’t. Things like the Rail Safety Act aren’t exactly sitting on my side-table, so what that means is that I had next to no clue what my rights were whenever I was approached by a transit officer. Legally speaking, I needed to know, am I their bitch or what?

Not that it’s our fault that we routinely step onto RailCorp property without knowing how we can and can’t be treated, nor do I think it’s an accident either!

After a few altercations, I decided to step out of the smog and educate myself of my rights as a commuter. Did I find them out from the ‘Commuter Rights’ page I found on the CityRail and RailCorp websites? No, because I just made that page up. You would think something like that would exist, wouldn’t you? In fact, both of the aforementioned organisations have never made any effort to enlighten commuters of the powers in which transit officers have been awarded, even in the media. The thing about this that actually makes a whole lot of sense though is the fact that RailCorp actually want you to think that transit officers are police officers. They like that misconception, and what better way is there to nurture a misconception to good health than to simply change an officer’s uniform from that putrid grey colour to blue and mention nothing else about it anywhere, as if to create the phantasm of NSW’s actual police force. And as of March next year, they’ll also be painting toy guns black and spraying ticket evaders with a hail of Nerf bullets.

Pow! Pow!

I’ve got to hand it to them though, they’ve played it smart since even before the transit officers were implemented ten years ago. The state government knows what we’re like; if the regulations aren’t mentioned anywhere for somebody to stumble upon, then there aren’t any seeds to grow any questions that will make some sort of racket. So, in the interest of public-service, if they aren’t going to do it then I suppose I’ll just go ahead and plant that seed myself then.

A Rail Safety Officer or Rail Transit Officer (notice how I didn’t say ‘police’) cannot, cannot, cannot:

  • Ask for identification. It is, however, an offence not to state your name or address if requested, but it’s not an offence if you choose not to prove it.
  • Arrest you. They can do a citizen’s arrest, but so can you and I, so I suppose those officers better watch the fuck out!

As well as those two things, the only real stuff they can do is the usual laundry list:

  • Give you a fine (using whatever name and address you give them).
  • Ask you to produce your ticket and/or concession/student cards.
  • Kick you to the curb (by that I mean 'gently escort you from the premises').

And that’s about it. Anything short of that and they’re technically breaking rules themselves. However, what they can bluff people into doing, well, they won't like me mentioning that. The thing is that our state rail, unlike other states (see Melbourne’s rail), have always struggled to get the necessary approval to give these officers more power than the measly limp-dicked few that they do have, so they’re only option has been to cross their fingers and do what they can to make us – the people – unwittingly act against our best-interest.

It sounds nefarious, I know, especially since we’re talking about a government entity and people's money, but I’m not just being grandiose when I say that – I defy you to find out your commuter rights without digging through some law website. So, next time you’re accosted by these people that dress in police costumes, just follow the advice of N.W.A., “wika, wika, fuck tha police!”...well the train police...well train officers.

And yeah, if you want to check out the act itself where I found all of this, you can download that here. Part five, page sixty-seven is where the honey’s at.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

My Cat the Hound Dog

I think one of the strangest thoughts I had as a child was when I was 11 and my mum had our cat de-sexed. There was all this talk about preventing him from wanting to run away and prowl the streets for sex with lady-cats, and that's when it hit me: there was a high-possibility that our cat had already lost its virginity…before me!

Pepper was probably a little hound-dog before we paid the nice lady to lop off his balls. Of course, at the boyish age that I was, sex was in no way a possibility; it was just a strange feeling, owning a two year old member of an inferior species whom was probably pounding more pussy than I was. Emasculation level: very high.

My cat, the hound dog!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

The Grinch Who Stole Shots

As far as the law’s concerned, I started drinking almost four years ago when I hit eighteen. Once at a nightclub, my cousin reminisced a time which was well-before I actually started drinking where going out to bars and clubs in Sydney wasn’t the latex-gloved airport affair it is now. There were no lockouts, drink-based bans or hating on glass. The only real worry of any night-out, albeit very minor, was your age. Since then, from what I’ve gathered from other more mature folk, it’s true how simple things were, and yeah, that fucking sucks, especially for those of us that, like me, turned the legal drinking age when this war on Sydney’s alcohol violence hoopla was just kicking off. But, that aside, can we please quit acting like the government is the villain here.

Every few months and every New Years, the same landslide of short-sighted bullshit either gets splashed across the news, is involuntarily-forced into my inbox or floats out of people's mouths, and it’s always just the same whinge about how the government – the Grinch who stole Christmas – are trying to put an end to fun by banning shots for a few hours. Please, spare me. We, the hoi-polloi, are the only ones to blame for any stringent rules on the consumption of alcohol. Of course, whenever I say ‘we’ in this post, I actually refer to anybody who has, I don’t know, glassed somebody…ever or caused trouble to businesses near wherever the alcohol was served. If you fall into that criteria, and now you’re having a tantrum, then take a look in the mirror buddy, you’re the little devil whinging about the heat.

There is one area where these idiots have a point though (of course, that’s assuming that this is the point that they’re trying to make), we should be able to do whatever we want, whenever we want. And yes, the state government are the ones who are standing in the way of that, but how does that make them the bad guys? If alcohol-fuelled violence really is as bad as the media is making it out to be, then frankly I’d be more concerned if the government weren’t doing something. Do people not understand that this is their job? It is one of their duties to regulate the sale and consumption of alcohol. They’re the good guys who have our best-interest at heart in terms of alcohol-consumption and this is how they think that they’re going to keep us safe. No shots after midnight, plastic cups, a two in the morning lockout – will they be very effective? Your guess is as good as mine. Does it make things hard for everyone? Yes. But at least they are doing something about it, am I wrong?

On a final note, has anybody actually stood back and spared a thought about what it actually is that everybody is sooooo up in arms about? And I mean really thought about it. Is alcohol really this important to everybody? Excuse me, I’ll rephrase that: Is a little less alcohol really this important to people? I mean, I love shots and doubles as much as the next guy, but like I’d ever campaign for something so trivial and tawdry. I mean, drinking’s not a right; everybody knows that…right? Because it’s not how we’re acting. If somebody didn’t know what was happening and they only saw the reaction to this travesty, they would think that we just banned church or voting or something. See, those two things are actually rights - drinking alcohol however, that’s a privilege, a gift even! Alcohol is a drug, don’t forget. Out of all the drugs in the world, I’d say only a small percentage of them are legal – that makes it a privilege. What’s more is that this and arguably nicotine are the only recreational drugs that are legal - to me, when you take into account how many recreational substances there are out there that could score you a nice little prison sentence, that makes it a fucking gift. I think we should just think ourselves lucky that the drinking age isn’t twenty-one anymore, don’t you?

Really, this all just sounds like vacant mutterings from the same people who have convinced themselves that the police single them out all the time because they’re not white or something. I mean, these people are never just taking a stroll, wondering why Brothers & Sisters got cancelled each time they’re accosted by police, are they? But in their mind, they always seem to think that’s the case. That’s not to say that the world isn’t littered with injustice; I myself have been bent over a table and fucked Oscar Wilde-style by the law-man on numerous occasions, but my point is that the law rarely comes knocking unless you give it a reason to. Translate that to this situation: they served, we drank, we drank a lot, we glassed, we pissed it out all over our freedoms and they responded. It’s that simple. I’m not real crystal on what people aren’t understanding about the concept of placing-blame, because the way it’s done is that one person places blame on the person or people who are to blame, in this case, ourselves! So basically what we have here in Sydney are a group of people only angry because they’re either as addicted as Billie Holiday or as dense as Forrest Gump.

Here’s an idea, just kickin’ it around: instead of petitioning against the government for, you know, governing, the more logical thing to do would be to petition your friends to stop acting like total fuckwits, that way the hands of the government won’t be forced into trying to stop them.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

I Love Mike Tyson…Psych!

For some time now, I’ve had this throbbing god-like erection…of hate! A tasteless thing to say I know, but it’s okay here because I’m writing today to throw some thoughts your way about a human being (using that loosely) who doesn’t have a scintilla of taste in their body, and their name is Mike Tyson. That hate, however, isn’t nearly as monumental as the less than favourable feelings I hold toward his fans. You see, I only hate Mike Tyson the same way that I hate all violent rapists, but I hate people who celebrate people like that more, and that’s the problem, we are constantly celebrating and eulogising Tyson for his shenanigans, whether they’re the acts of a sick person or not. What? Are we light on rape? Or do we just see mental illness as a wealthy-source of chuckles? Forgive me, I’m confused.

stuLet’s talk about another rapist for a second, Ted Bundy. Personally, I would never have a beer with Ted Bundy or consider him anything more than an evil and reprehensible person, and from what I’m assuming, neither would you. So why would I treat Tyson’s appearance at Charlie Sheen’s Roast, in The Hangover movies (which directly celebrate his insanity) and in his upcoming show here as anything other than the revolting celebration of an evil and reprehensible bipolar and alleged manic depression sufferer whom had eight children to a rash of different women and, in his mid-twenties, was convicted of raping an eighteen year old girl in a hotel room. And the much larger question is: why would anybody else see it as anything else?

I’ve covered the glorification of arseholes in some detail already, so I’m trying to keep this short. The reason I refrained from mentioning Tyson back then was because I’ve been saving his impressive rap-sheet for a much, much rainier day. Now, in the midst of the Australian Government granting him a visa to enter this country and give inspirational speeches to…I don’t know, other sex offenders I suppose, that day is here I’m afraid.

So, when you consider the high-praise Tyson receives, a man whom is so vile that he even got one his prison guards pregnant whilst serving out his rape conviction, and then when you also take into account the swelling record sales a man (another loosely used term) receives even after he bashes Rihanna, and then the many others not unlike Tyson whom people basically worship, what’s the message that’s being sent to the rest of the world, that if a person’s famous enough then abhorrent crimes like rape and general brutality are okay? I don’t get it.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Safe-Sex & Mind-Puzzles

They're all thin?

So, if this one’s the closest I can get to wearing nothing…

And this one’s the thinnest in the entire country

But this one is the thinnest Ansell make...

And all of them are made by Ansell
and sold in Australia…



No wonder bogans don’t like these things.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Ryan Quinn: Parent

I won’t ever assume to know what it’s like to be a parent until I actually am one, but when that time comes, one thing I will make sure I never do that I’ve seen many parents do before me is forget what things were like when I was young - in other words, what things were like in reality. Strict-parents act like they have no memory of their former years, no memory at all, like they all used to pop Rohypnol recreationally or received an acute knock to the back of the head on their thirtieth birthdays. It either has something to do with the changing times or the simple fact that emotion cannot coexist with objectivity and perspective. If it’s neither then I don’t know what’s wrong with them, perhaps the drugs that were passed around during the seventies nullified their brain’s ability to see logic. So, before all of that paternal-haziness sets in for me and I get rug-rats of my own, I’ve put together a list of all the things that I have both learnt from my journey through youth and from the stupid mistakes that I’ve seen parents make during said-youth, this way I won’t be subscribing to the same nonsense.

Sex happens between midnight and 11.59pm
That’s it; job done. Thank god! Haven’t you heard? Two in the morning is sex o’clock. So, have your kids in the house by then and the battle for their innocence has been won. Phew! Isn’t parenting easy? Nahhhht! I love this, because parents have this dusting of the hands moment when they have their children home at night, like that’s their job well done. Because, that’s right, sex is a werewolf, but fuck the full moon, it comes out every night looking for your daughter’s v-word! Yeah, okay. And here comes the dumbest part - come daylight, they’re all like ‘do whatever you like; the world is your playground!’, you know, because nobody has ever had sex during the day. Reality-check, aisle four!

Sex happens everywhere
So, if not letting your children out at night is somehow an act of sex-prevention, then by that rationale, I wouldn’t get them a car that has any back seats in it or one that has the letter ‘P’ on the gear stick. You see, quite a while back, the French created this thing and it’s called ‘having sex outside of the house’, heard of it? Since then, kids have been doing it everywhere; take it from me.

Other teenagers are not the sex-police
Apparently, sex doesn’t happen when other people are around either. Despite the fact that I wish this wasn’t the truth, you can’t sit around in your lounge room kidding yourself that who’s around makes much difference, in fact, sometimes they make it worse. These kids just have to pull down the volume when they pull down the pants, that’s all. I personally cannot tell you how many times I’ve been to a house party where a couple has just disappeared for a while or one of the doors mysteriously won’t open. Moreover, something that shocked me is the super-secret, but not so secret, under the shirt shit that I sometimes spot in nightclubs. With all of those people around, not to mention the security guards, this truly debunks any delusions parents have about the whole group-mentality. In fact, this up-market club I went to a few years ago had these very suspect unisex cubicle-type things. I, uh…don’t really know what they were and regretfully (or maybe not) I didn’t investigate further – let’s just say that I was afraid of what I might see.

I also often like to indulge in the parental-misconception that their daughter’s best friend is always the best chaperone in situations that they observe as potentially-amorous. Another thing that the French created was this thing they call a ‘Ménage à trois’, you know, a threesome. Typically the idea of a good ‘ol Ménage is the guy’s and, take it from me, his fantasy does not involve crossing swords over his girlfriend’s naughty bits. So, if and when she agrees to a scenario which involves four or more breasts, who’s the first person the girl will suggest? I’ll give you a hint: it’s probably going to be the person she feels most comfortable with. So, perhaps the whole best friend approach isn’t as full-proof as some parents have fooled themselves into believing.

‘Formal’ and ‘Friday’ may start with the same letter, but they aren’t the same
Alright, so your child, whom is actually pretty much an adult, wants to see this dunce Friday night, but you won’t let them because the person is a dunce. No harm done because luckily there’s a new Friday night every seven days. Year ten and twelve formals, however, don’t tend to come around quite as regularly, so why ruin it? I can’t help but get this image in my head of me forty years old, showing my children photos from my formal and then having to think back on why my girlfriend wasn’t there, somebody whom could quite possibly be their mother, and why? Because my parents felt uncomfortable with the idea? Fuck that! Great, thanks for ruining my life, Dad! If I do nothing else as a father, one thing I will do is write them a blank cheque for their formal, because who the fuck am I to ruin that for them. Contrary to popular belief, some things are actually sacred to a teenager.

Overseas is not safer than here
I left this one ‘til last because, get this, there is actually a loophole to strict-parenting and it is – I love this! – lots of water. It’s so funny! Parents treat their own dumb rules like they’re the Wicked Witch of the West or something. Apparently, parents who dry-reach at the notion of their kids sleeping outside of the house on Australian soil have no qualms about them doing it for months on another country’s soil. It’s not just baby-prevention that water melts either, all of the rules that applied here seem to get confiscated by customs before you fly internationally, and understandably so. But the part that gets me the most is when the kids get back and the Australian rules get reinstated. So, as opposed to the whole getting approval to go on a vacation thing being a sign of growth, it’s actually just what a lawyer would call a ‘loophole’. I don’t know about you but I always struggle with the logic here, because being able to sleep overseas but not in the next suburb is a lot like if murder was no longer a crime but manslaughter remained reprehensible. I can tell you one thing, my rug-rats won’t be going on a trip anywhere with any more freedoms than they have here in their home-country. I just don’t see any point in playing mind-games with them.

Yeah, because I'm nuts...Speaking as somebody who dates their daughters, I’ve copped quite a lot of shit from parents in my time, usually to the point where I start to feel like Mark Wahlberg in ‘Fear’, the only difference being that I don’t beat people up or decapitate dogs. Evidently, birth sends people insane. The insane part being that I’m a really nice guy, but that’s never stopped a healthy bulk of the parents who have laid eyes on me from reducing me down to a dangerous sexual-predator within a matter of minutes. Some of them could’ve burned me into a pile of cartoon-ashes with those eyes! It would seem that with great paranoia, comes a not-so-great, nor useful, superpower. Slow exhale. I don’t know anymore, it looks like ‘reality’ is a dirty-word in some households, which is ironic because I’m having it inscribed on my family crest.

Oh yeah, and while we’re on that, if you hurt my future-daughter…Bang! Bang! Bang!

Bang! Bang! Bang!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Mr. Sandman, Bring Me a Gun

Here are some percentages:

That’s just me going down the list of Adam Sandler films from the last three years on Rotten Tomatoes. Comparatively, this isn’t a big drop from his earlier works as he is very seldom critically-successful, but zero percent is a record-low for him, and it’s all indicative of the downslide that has become his career. What I haven’t been able to work out for some time now is why it seems like he is deliberately taunting us with shit movies?

I cannot watch Happy Gilmore anymore without ruining it with my own inner-conflict that tries making sense of anything that came out after Zohan. There are directors and actors who genuinely struggle with topping their own debut hits by coming out with admirable-attempts that just aren’t as good, and then there is Sandler - a man who seems to be endeavouring to star in, produce and/or write films just so that they can be critically-annihilated.

In 2006, I spent two hours stifling-vomit during a showing of Click, and every film (bar Funny People, arguably) in which his name is attached since then has pretty much been, only slightly, up to par with his very first movie, Going Overboard. The only discernible-difference I can see is that these new ones have bigger stars, a better crew, huge budgets and, by some miracle, are making tens of millions. For anybody who hasn’t seen Going Overboardand why would you – it has the laugh-factor of a urinal-cake.

My Photoshop job is better than Jack and Jill ten-fold

To me, it’s almost like Sandler wants to spend his latter-years churning out self-parodies of his former-years. It’s all very reminiscent of Eddie Murphy and his rash of nothing but horrible movies – I’m sorry, can’t use the word ‘movie’ anymore – …horrible things where he would just star as half the cast. It’s the same behaviour as Sandler, shitting all over his former-days of Raw and the Beverly Hills Cop films. I don’t get it.

This year’s latest hour and a half Happy Madison thing, which was basically Little Nicky with a beer in his hand, made US$47 million worldwide. Popcorn, frozen-cokes, choc-tops, M&Ms…stop me when I mention the reason why you’d go spend money on a post-Click Happy Madison thing, because it can’t be for the actual movie, can it? How could it be? When Happy Gilmore grosses US$41.2 million, how does...that thing make more money, let alone any money at all?

Somewhere between 2005 and 2007, I think that Adam Sandler was trying to see how dumb we all are by testing the waters, and now that he’s more than confident that we’re fucking retarded, he’s taunting us with it! That’s not a joke, it’s a serious theory; you don’t make Jack and Jill and expect it not to bomb. From the Sandler shit-list, I have seen three at the cinema and each of those sessions just felt like an elaborate practical-joke to me. I was convinced that Sandler and Rob Schneider were inside the fire-exit waiting for the perfect moment to burst into the cinema, pointing and laughing at all of us because they just stole millions of our dollars for what is essentially a steaming pile of shit.

I mean, we’d pay for a rotten banana-peel if it had his name on it.

From here on in, I’m pleading ignorance to even the existence of Adam Sandler. He’s dead to me, and so is his production company. Start putting Allen Covert as the lead and I may reconsider, but until then, these ‘movie’ things don’t even deserve my time, the same way that Happy Gilmore 2 won’t even deserve my acknowledgement.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Dumb Shit Restrooms

Please,come in and touch everything...

Judging from the majority of public restrooms I visit, I often wonder if they even knew that germs existed in the fifties. I only say that because each time nature forces me to visit one, it feels to me like I’ve just taken a step into the past. Some restrooms are honestly just a room and a door with the bare-essentials thoughtlessly thrown in, which would be all fine if it were the fifties, but not now. I consider myself to be a vigorous pusher of technology and, I guess to some degree, an aspiring innovator, and from the majority of what I have seen, there is minimal innovation and a lacklustre amount of the available inexpensive technologies when it comes to our public restrooms. My general rule for judging the best is one with the least amount of post-soap hand-contact as possible, but because of a borderline-retarded design, it seems that people are trying to maximise that number. So, since I sometimes like to chest-thump with little resolve, this time I’m going to give some realistic, inexpensive answers that can basically make any hand to germ contact a thing you’ll need to tell your grandchildren about as they gaze at you, astonished.

Firstly, do something about that damn door! I have a saying, and it is “dumber than doorhandles in a restroom”. It is seriously the restroom-realm’s ‘Wicked Witch of the West’. Door-handles are just such an old-fashioned idea. The thing that makes the door so bad is that it cancels out every effort you have made in the tedious pursuit of hygiene; even those trying to be hygienic can’t be when there’s a doorhandle in the equation. Think about it: when you’re in there, you touch the cubicle-lock, you touch the seat, you touch your bits, the flush, then the cubicle-lock again, the tap and the soap dispenser – majority of which you and everybody else before you have touched. So then you wash all of that off and your hands are immaculate, only to have to touch a tap and a fucking doorhandle, both of which are teaming with either your fresh-germs or every douchebag-Neanderthal’s germs who didn’t bother cleaning the shit (yes, I said ‘shit’!) off of their hands before you; nonsense! And I didn’t even mention the fact that even things that never get touched by our hands are still disease-ridden due to airborne faecal and urine particles. Basically, by building doors for our amenities by a design that is only viable in a home of two, they are sending out the message that they want you to have e.coli.

My answer? What the new shopping centres are beginning to do, which is evidence of a scintilla of forethought, is replacing the door with an open-alcove. The way it goes is that the bathrooms are tucked away down a small corridor, obscuring there doorways from plain-sight so that nobody can see your penis, but still eliminating the need for doors or the petri-dish doorhandles that accompany them.

However, there are a number of factors that could be the stopping-force behind the use of such an alcove - off the top of my head: lack of space, building codes that require restrooms to have an air-lock or just the fact that nobody wants to eat at a restaurant where there’s no nothing between the toilet and their dish. To that I suggest automatic-doors. Bear with me here, because I know this is some craaaazy, Star Trek shit I’m trying to suggest here! I mean, it’s not like they’ve been around since the nineties or anything, and it’s not like every commercial building and disabled toilet have them either. Oh wait! They do. It’s not a new idea at all, hardly a technologically-challenging concept and they’re fucking everywhere I look! The double-however here is that most small businesses may not be able to afford this unfortunately, and to them I give the Schwarzenegger of all bathroom door-handle excuses anybody can throw at me: foot-handles. We have these two perfectly good extremities which are being completely ignored in this department, so why not use them? It’s genius, not that it’s my idea. It’s called the Toepener, it was created as the first and only product by a little start-up by the name of ‘Forge’. If you read their brief company story and consider the ingenuity behind a product like the ‘Toepener’, these guys know what I’m talking about here. It’s just a piece of metal placed at the bottom corner of the door, designed to be pulled by your foot. Considering that some have leg problems, this doesn’t necessarily need to replace handles altogether, it can just be an option for the majority. At this point, I could see price being a bit of an issue, but with wider adoption, it will only get cheaper, so it is seriously my excuse-seeking missile in any argument regarding the design of restroom egress.

So, in review:
- Alcoves instead of doors so that I no longer have to stretch out my shirts or jar my pinkies trying to open them.
- Automatic doors where alcoves aren’t an option.
- And, the best of all, foot-handles for those seeking simplicity.

My second biggest gripe with most bathrooms is the fact that they automate the dryers, but automate nothing else. What retarded birth of thought thinks that this solves any problems at all? Really? I mean, when it comes to a bathroom, you can’t have your e. coli and eat it too. It’s either fully automated or it’s not at all. How the fuck does being able to avoid touching the dryer somehow change the fact that you still need to touch taps, locks, soap dispensers and, most importantly, the inevitable door-handle. So, why is automating one thing in the mix at all practical? Was touching the dryer button such a big problem in history that all of them had to be automated? Can someone please help me out here? It just screams squandered-cash to me.

The resolution: Once again, I return back to my praise of feet. Within the last decade, some places have resorted to the aforementioned door-less restrooms and then others have, on top of that, Tony Stark-ed the shit out of them with automated taps, dryers and soap-dispensers, but These buttons could last through a shit-stormlike I said, automation is costly and when you’re on the cheap, the flimsy sensors that you’re provided probably won’t be the easiest things to use, so why not foot-buttons? A button below every sink, every cubicle door, every toilet, so on and so forth. If not feet, they can be operated by your elbow even. It’s not that buttons are very expensive, in fact, we already have them in our bathrooms now, they’re just in the wrong places, that’s all. You see, it all just requires a little bit of extra wiring...and a brain. At the first restaurant I worked, one of their hand-washing stations was operated with your knee, and that wasn’t even an electrical function, just some simple mechanism, akin to the same mechanism in any conventional tap you could find in your own home. In the words of Forge: “Use your head, use your foot.”

'Airblade' DemoAnd while I’m on dryers, just as a quick side-note: I admire Dyson for being innovative and trying to save energy, I really do, but their new automatic Airblade dryers are just ridiculous. I get it, they dry fast, but unless you were born with a surgeon’s hands, what’s the draw? Whenever I use them, I feel like I’m playing Operation!, except instead of getting a buzzing sound and a red nose when I hit the sides, I get gastro from the germs of whatever dickhead didn’t use soap before me. Seriously, I’d much rather spend the extra thirty seconds a day the Airblade saves me by using a conventional dryer than feeling like I have to wash my hands again. They’re a joke, and at sixteen hundred dollars each, an expensive one too. So, my question is why not spend the money on something else, like, I don’t know, designing your bathroom properly! When you’re saving over a grand on each dryer, conventional elbow-operated hand-dryers will do just fine, seriously. Frankly, I’d be happy with paper-towels, they cost virtually nothing and, funnily enough, they don’t use any in-house energy.

Let’s just face it, in the olden times, they thought differently to the way we think now design-wise, what’s worse is that some fuck heads are evidently still studying their design-notes. They were basically toddlers with building blocks, just stacking things on top of each other or throwing them wherever they fit, treating every item as if they have to be mutually-exclusive. Really, the market just lacked innovators, much like the ones that have made places like IKEA so successful. Some may argue that it just depends on how many dollars are in the bank or where the technology and the style are at the time, but I think that those things are irrelevant here. At its core, it’s simply a matter of utilising any given space by being clever, getting it right and then others will follow. Take the kitchen in my mid-fifties built home for instance – it is shit. No, seriously, whenever I look at it, I feel like somebody took a good hard look at a turd and that was there inspiration behind where everything should go. “Just throw the oven anywhere!” is something I can imagine being said when they built my house. Things are just thrown where they fit and the cabinets basically force us to just stack things on top of each other, meaning that ten things need to be moved in order to get to another thing. Like apes, we are living! Nowadays, conventional and microwave ovens are built into countertops, fridges have a dedicated space, pots and pans are hung by simple hooks, bins are built into drawers, dishes and other crockery are stacked vertically and the list goes on and on and on and... Essentially, everything is just an easy slide away, unlike the creativity of whatever bunch of morons put together some of these restrooms; perhaps they lost it behind a cereal bowl.

If there is anything you’re going to change about a bathroom, you’re first and most important order of business should be the door, because trying to make a clean-break out of a bathroom with an automatic hand-dryer is a lot like if you tried to scrape gum off the bottom of your shoe with the wrong end of a used-syringe – what the fuck is the point?

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

I Can Play Too

I’m generally a needy person. However, where once I would let my neediness show through as a younger naïve person, I’ve now learnt how to control it to the point where people don’t notice, ya’ know, for the good of humanity, a fine product of my growth and self-awareness. Although, with that same control, I’ve also figured out a way to channel it for evil.

Like us on Facebook...or dieCase and point, a couple of years ago, a friend of a friend whom I’d made a favourable impression on added me on the Facebook. All signs were pointing toward the fact that she was into me, with her adding me, the conversation, the attention she was handing over on a platter, so I decided to ask her out on a day-date – nothing special, just a casual day in the city so that I can show her some of the cool places I know, enough of them to seem cultured and knowledgeable. When the day came though, in my mind, the date was pretty much over before we even got to the city. Firstly, she showed up in a dress and ripped stockings. A petty point, I know, but frankly, she looked like a rape victim. It didn’t make any sense; if she was interested in me then it wouldn’t have been hard for her to run to the shop to get a new pair or to not wear any at all. Ultimately, I took it as a sign that if she didn’t care enough to not look terrible on our first date - a day where the mould is set, then in her mind the date was already iron-clad in friendship. Secondly, as if she hadn’t already left a bad taste in my mouth, on the train-ride over, she did the whole ‘disclose way too much about deep-seeded personal shit’ thing, which in my experience is a sure-sign of crazy. I don’t remember the exact details of the story, but I felt like I’d stepped on an insane-mine and my limbs were just flying everywhere while she was telling it. It was something about making a fake chat account and tricking this guy she knew for quite a while into thinking she was somebody else so that she could…I can’t remember, gain his trust and kill him? Needless to say, by the time we got there, I was already pretty disheartened about the whole thing.

However, one of the things that came up during the date was this new shopping centre they’d just finished building in her area. She went into how beautiful it is with its open design and its inclusion of flora and fauna, and that’s where she added that she should take me to go see it some time. I was blown away, because before this point, I wasn’t even considering speaking to this girl ever again and I thought that she was on the same page, but being as gorgeous as she was and the fact that she was the one who segued the conversation to a second date, I figured I didn’t have anything to lose…but how wrong was I.

Not only did she not get back to me on that, but the following few weeks were nothing but a series of unanswered messages and a string of dumb excuses. In the times that she did actually reply, she would say that she was busy but not offer up any alternative days where she would be free, nor did she ever get back to me later. The whole situation was just so frustrating, because not only did the tables somehow turn from her pursuing me to me pursuing her, but she was the one that had conceived the entire idea of a second date with absolutely no coaxing from me whatsoever. Basically, with this dumb game she was playing, she was fucking me when I didn’t even want to fuck her!

Right, so let’s get one thing straight, I’m not an idiot. I don’t subscribe to the idea that everybody enjoys my company and because of that, I have a pretty keen eye for when it’s the case that they don’t. With this bitch, I knew a few days in that she was trying to get rid of me. Her master scheme was to ignore me until I got the picture and stopped trying. The part that burns me the most is the insult on my intelligence. I don’t like being tricked and, more importantly, I don’t like people thinking that they’ve tricked me, so if me giving up meant her thinking that she’s succeeded in doing just that…then I wasn’t going to fucking give up. It became a game of spite.

I smashed open the neediness that I’d been bottling up for years and suddenly I was sending a text every few days, calling with my ID enabled a few times weekly, chatting with her whenever she came up as online on Facebook, I even opened up a few opportunities for her to tap out of this game that she’d thrown me into, but she wouldn’t blink. That’s the Charles Chaplin version of my technological-assault anyway. It basically ended with me cursing at her on the phone and then her hanging up on me.

The moral of this story, I guess, is fuck my feelings. I’m a big boy, I can handle it. I always here girls say ‘oooh, ahhh, I don’t want to hurt him’, and that bullshit sentiment would have a little more resonance with me if it weren’t so self-fulfilling, causing more hurt and frustration that it initially seeks to avoid. I’m no clairvoyant, so I can’t exactly tell what the problem is, but make no mistake, I know when there’s a problem, and somebody has one with me now which they’re keeping to themselves. So, a friendly message to that person and anybody else who plans to waste my time: if you don’t like my company, then man the fuck up and tell me the truth from the outset, because you won’t like the mess that I’ll create.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Iron Man is spelt ‘Downey Jr.’

Me? I like Iron Man, but I don’t really like Iron Man, if you know what I’m saying? In the midst of all the cash that just spewed from The Avengers volcano - a superhero gang which Tony Stark/Iron Man is basically the front-runner of - and the five announcements Marvel just made at Comic-Con, I feel that it's worth pointing out something: majority of these people don't actually like Iron Man, noooo, don’t be silly, it’s Robert Downey Jr. they like. You see, Hollywood is a treasure-trove of oh-so clever trickery and manipulation, so much so that it has managed to turn people who have never even picked up a comic book into ravenous comic book fanatics! Personally, I think I've read maybe two comics and one graphic novel in my entire life, all of which were given to me, but that fact has somehow never stood in the way of me knowing and loving a cornucopia of printed superheroes, and it’s all thanks to Hollywood churning superhero after superhero through their monetising-machine I like to call ‘Marvelwood’.


Tony Stark? Who the fuck is Tony Stark? You mean Robert Downey Jr., right, in the red metal suit? Oh yeah...Tony 'Downey Jr.' Stark. That’s how people know the character, not that I can blame anyone. The actor himself is a handsome, funny and charismatic guy, which actually speaks to his success because ultimately the characters he plays in his movies are a pseudo-version of himself as far as I can see, especially in his post-cocaine career. Now, pile on top of that an incredibly smart and incredibly rich character that is part-machine, owns his own collection of shiny sports cars, speaks to a computer system like it’s a pal of his (which I’d say he created) and has a fucking terrorist kill-count under his belt, and suddenly Marvelwood have created the quintessential everyman, and what boy doesn't want to be the everyman, and what girl doesn’t want to be with the everyman? Needless to say, Downey Jr. is basically Tony Stark, minus the creepy ex-con thing, and Tony Stark is Iron Man. Christ, maybe the idea to put him into a Marvelwood flick came before Iron Man was even on the table.

If you’re one of my three regular-readers, you would’ve noticed that this is my second superhero movie blog, the last of which being so recent in fact that it’s probably still sitting on this page. It’s a touch out-of-character for me considering I’m actually not that big a fan of the film-genre in question, but the last one spoke about how I feel that the Batman character is being butchered by faux-fans, the core of which speaks to my sentimentality and love of Batman. No, love’s not an over-statement; I really do love Batman, so much so that if Bruce Wayne asked me for some post-distress nookie, I’d ask how deep. But it has nothing to do with the comic books, what it does involve however is the fact that as a child I became very well acquainted with Tim Burton’s Batman series and the subsequent blasphemy that followed. Had Burton not picked up the megaphone and made those two films, Batman to me would have just been some cheesy television series from when my folks were kids and a cartoon they show on Saturday mornings while I played soccer, but thanks to Marvelwood (or if you're a stickler for details - DCwood), I grew to adore a comic book character without ever reading a comic book.

More to the point, something that draws a line between Iron Man and Batman for me, and I trust many others, is that my adoration has nothing to do with the actor playing Batman. As the caped-crusader, I love Michael Keaton, Christian Bale, Val Kilmer and George Cl…sorry, was trying to make a joke there, but I threw up all over myself; I even enjoy Kevin Conroy voicing him in the cartoons. In simpler terms, it’s Batman I’m going to see, not an actor in his outfit.

Could this Batman mentality translate to Iron Man? Long answer: noooooo waaaaay! In fact, I'm willing to bet that when Marvelwood reboots Iron Man, and that’s something of a ‘when’, there will be a group of people, probably the same age I will be, who will cry tears of blood over the fact that somebody else is playing Tony Stark. How well the new actor portrays him, how effectively he makes teen girls tremor in their seats, how much of a thespianic-genius he is will mean absolutely nothing, because people who are like me who watched Favereu’s Iron Man before picking up an Iron Man comic will identify Tony Stark with Robert Downey Jr., and seeing somebody else fill those shoes will be an utter travesty in their sweet, sweet eyes. Now, I’m not disputing the fact that there are some true fans out there, but mark my words, players - Iron Man’s success has very little to do with Iron Man.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Divorcing Strangers

One of the more boring ways I would define a relationship is a glimpse into what married life will be like with a person, allowing a person the discretion to objectively weigh the pros and cons, ultimately coming to the decision of whether to marry the person or move on. Yeah, I get it, religion says this and culture says that about sex and marriage, but for me to care any less about what those two things have to say would require me to delve into the impossible, simply because they don’t define a relationship this way. Instead, they would have you believe that going willy-nilly into life-long commitments is the right thing to do, and I could not disagree more. Contrary to some of my actions, I love relationships, I take them very seriously; religion, however, does not, some even abolishing the relationship completely. Naturally, I want the best for my marriage and, in my honest opinion, the first step on that path is to disregard anything that any culture or religion says, because they may mean well, but I’ve never once been convinced that they have my best interests in mind, and that’s what troubles me.

My ultimate question, I guess, is how well can you know somebody if you don’t live with and/or fuck them?

To be blunt, if you haven’t lived with someone, then you aren’t prepared to marry them and it’s silly to think otherwise. I know what you’re thinking, ‘what more could I find out about this person I love dearly?’, but trust me, there’s more! A relationship which spans over two different households has many blind spots. I’ve always suffered with the belief that every person holds themselves a little differently in different situations, so if that’s true - which it is - and if a relationship truly is just a social-convention used to help you get from square one to the point of sliding that ring on your partner’s finger like I explained earlier, then what are you going to learn from just dating a person you only see for a few days each week? I mean, even if you think I’m wrong, everybody is a little different when they’re out of there comfort zones, you can’t argue with that, right? It’s proven: women apply make-up, men style their hair. When I’m at home? Can’t say I’ve ever waxed my hair for a hard day in front of Seinfeld. I’ve never splashed CK on my freshly-shaved face so that I can go mend the back fence or clip the trees. I’ve never worn a two hundred dollar jacket so that I can go take a whiz in it. I mean, I’m home right now and no woman is doing her she-bopping to a boy in a red fleece, tracksuit-pants and tatted-thermal-socks, especially one whom had a nugget of melted peanut-butter hanging off the side of his lip three seconds ago, but people still find me attractive– the public-me anyway. Understand where I’m going with this?

I suppose you could argue that every relationship is unique with its little nuances and eccentricities, but there’s no substitution to this element of a relationship. It’s not like a learner’s permit, where you can just accumulate hours over time and dust off your hands once you’re done – it’s a practice-marriage, a pre-marital relationship which should eventually become an all-the-time sort of deal, just like marriage is going to be. Don’t think that just because you’ve slept at each other’s houses a few times or spent a few weeks away together that you’ve taken an adequate glimpse into what the rest of your life will be like with this person. They may be a little looser and you’ve more than likely learnt a little more about the way they live, but they are still outside of their comfort-zones; take my word for it, she doesn’t only own G-string underwear. I often treat any relationship like I would some new furniture in my house. For the first month or so, that new table in the room will always scream out at me. I’ll treat it with extra special care, making sure that it doesn’t get damaged and lose that immaculate-sheen, but then once those first couple of months pass, it just becomes a part of the room like everything else did, another item that I can’t really imagine was ever not sitting there in the first place; I’m comfortable with it now. Now, apply this same logic to a relationship, but make it about two years. Two years, people. Two years; in the same house, the same room and the same bed, not a week in some hotel room and definitely not sleeping on either side of a wall, and maybe, j u s t maybe, you can then start thinking objectively about what it will be like to spend, ideally speaking, seventy plus years with this person, day in and day out.

Then there’s sex, the catalyst behind any ‘marry first, get to know you later’ value system. Deep breath. Whenever I used to weigh up the prospect of dating a devout Catholic girl, the first and biggest item that went into the ‘cons’ column was the no intercourse thing. The fact that I used to think that no sex only referred to sexual activity just goes to show how laughably naïve I used to be about how religious people think. The thing is that the religious definition for ‘sex’ is a lot different to the actual definition. To my mind, ‘sex’ is just an abbreviation of ‘sexual intercourse’; when you have sex, you have sexual intercourse. To religion though, the word is that plus a bunch of activities which have been known to lead to sex, like sleeping near the person, being under the same covers, being out of the house when the street lights come on, stupid shit like that (while oddly enough neglecting to prohibit things like alcohol, massages and playful-tickling, you know, the things that actually end in the removal of each other’s clothing). This is obviously where living together got all tangled up in the ‘no-sex-before-marriage’ thing, since living together, I guess, is really just a long sleepover in the parental-mind, which I suppose morphed ‘no-sex’ into ‘no-sleeping’. Now obviously, if you haven’t shaken the sheets already, living together with a partner for six months at the very most is going to lead to intercourse at some point, on top of which appliances have you not done it yet is probably the much better question. Understandably, here’s why gods everywhere have some issue with whom you’re sharing a bed with before you marry.

While we’re on sex (like my mind all the time!), people have often tried convincing me that this whole ‘thing’ is only a very small part of a relationship and that I needn’t worry myself with such silly nonsense, and I think that those people are morons! Frankly, I reckon that they just need somebody who can fuck the tight-lacing off of their corseted-minds! Obviously, sex shouldn’t be your main priority, but I’d keep it in my top five at the very least. Think about it, one way or another, you’re going to be having sex in your life; like I said, we aren’t somehow above nature here, just because we share the world with prudes doesn’t somehow mean that we have reformed our biological-urges. So, locking yourself into that marital-contract is essentially saying that you’d prefer that sex you’ll be having regardless to be with one person and one person only, ‘til death do us part, sickness and in health. In light of that, wouldn’t you at least want to make sure that this is good perennial sex we’re talking about? Affairs happen because people want something that they can’t get from their marriage; usually it’s a sex thing. You might be okay with bad sex for…I don’t know, a decade, but could you make it through two more decades of just lacklustre love-making, or, god forbid, none at all? Because if you can, then maybe this religion thing is for you, but if not, I’d steer clear. I know, people like to pretend that they don’t have sex and pretend that it’s no big deal to them because they’re too worried about what others might think, but like it or not, it’s a big deal – they must know somewhere in their minds that love can only carry a person so far through a purely emotional relationship that lacks a healthy physical component. Another thing certainly worth considering in my mind is your partner’s sexual habits, to be more specific, are they a rapist or not? What if it turns out that the guy is sexually abusive, and it just never came up before the wedding night because it never literally came up? If I were a woman, I’d rather dump my values, than be stuck with a rapist whom I’m with ‘til death do us part.

Evidently, sex, to me, is not unlike living with somebody. Making love before your marriage is just another source of insight into what marriage will be like with the other person. I mean, think about it, nobody just buys a car, so give it a right and proper test drive, c’mon! We aren’t ten years old here; we can make our own decisions about our own privates!

If you had asked me two years ago, I hadn’t even broken the six month barrier with somebody; so naturally, I was terrified of marriage (and probably still am). How could I not be? I had no focus. An eighty year commitment to one person is a big jump from my personal record of half a year. Weighted on top of that is the fact that my folks and most of my friend’s folks are all divorced. Contrary to what other nosy parents have claimed, my mum and dad’s divorce felt pretty smooth to me, my best friend’s parents’ divorce, however, was a travelling train-wreck. A house of five was divided into four separate houses. People got punched; others got melodramatically-suicidal - shit got hairy. I tell you, there’s nothing like walking home after a night out and not having the heart to tell a friend that you can see a police-car parked outside their house in the distance. Five people’s lives were radically changed, all because two people grew apart. These people weren’t religious either, in fact, they weren’t the type to rush into marriage, but my point in mentioning them is to illustrate how damaging a divorce can be. Like it or not, rushing into marriage isn’t the best way to avoid shit like this, actually, I’m almost sure that the longevity of even the healthiest marriages is marred the moment you enter into it blindly.

satan jesus

In Roman Catholicism, it goes “yada yada yada…from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.” It’s basically the church’s way of getting you to say ‘This is it! I’ll die before I divorce.’ But people are divorcing regardless of their vows and no body’s happy about it, especially the church, but ironically, the church are the first ones to shoot you down whenever you try to gather the adequate information required to make a calculated decision to marry. Hmm, that’s a tough one!   Marry   a   stranger…but   don’t   divorce? Hmmmm. (Be back in a year to decipher this mind-puzzle.) And then you’ve got the parents who act like they don’t want their kids to marry, and to stay married, at that. They make all of these restrictions, but then wonder why there kids aren’t ready yet. You would think half of them would somehow learn from their own stupid experiences, but they never do, continuing to teach the same broken-logic to their children that put their father into a different home. Most of them, I think, just don’t see the correlation between doing marriage ‘right by God’ and divorce. It just seems to me that by doing one godly act, we are forced into an ungodly one later on down the track; it’s cultural and religious entrapment. Personally, I’d prefer to get all of the ungodly shit out of the way as young as possible, rather than my elderly years, but that’s just me. You probably think I’m just trying to be funny by over-simplifying religious and cultural practices, but it’s the truth - as a Catholic, I would have to stand by that one golden rule: Marry a stranger, but don’t divorce them. It’s quite possibly the smartest way to live your life if your main goal is to not have a healthy marriage with the person you adore and to cause pain to your future children. It’s dumb!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Bullshit Certificate

Doctor’s certificate? More like bullshit certificate, am I right? There seems to be a policy circulating among the boss-people and teachers out there which stipulates that if you are away sick, you need to prove that you were in fact sick by getting what is commonly referred to as a doctor’s certificate, and each time I think back on the times I’ve ever been asked for one, I laugh so hard that I drop the cocked and loaded gun I was about to kill myself with! News flash: doctor’s certificates mean as much as toilet paper does post-flush and anybody who has convinced themselves any different is a fucking idiot, and here’s why.

First and foremost, I don’t know what fairy tale-utopia that some of my superiors have been living in, but in the reality that I live, doctors give these pieces of paper out like candy! Won’t give me a fucking jellybean, but these ‘legal’ documents are a cakewalk to get. And it’s gotten worse too, in fact, whenever I’ve gone lately, the GP is practically already writing the thing before I walk in the door. They’re always asking me ‘do you need a doctor’s note? Do you need one?’ I’m not just talking about the usual runny-nose shit either, I’ve been there for stomach-aches and migraines, all of which are essentially my word against the doctors, and yet they still offer the certification like they can really tell or something. I swear I could get one for a fucking paper-cut!

On another note (one that does actually mean something), let me ask you a question, when was the last time a doctor denied you a prescription? Scratch that, how many times in your life have you gone in with a bit of a blocked nose and not walked out with a piece of paper entitling you to medicine? Once? Twice? I tell you what doctors are, they’re front-of-house salespeople; they’re drug-pushers. There are drug company representatives who hop from doctor’s office to doctor’s office whispering incentives in your GP’s ear to sell more of their particular drug. It’s called big-pharmaceutical; some would liken it to big-tobacco. The next time you visit your doctor, take a look at their post-it note pad, the pen they write your dumb note with or whatever else and I’m sure you’ll find the logos of whoever has been doing the whispering in your own doctor’s ear. So, if doctor’s are willing to prescribe you drugs that you don’t particularly need so that they have a little extra to spend on that family vacation, something that walks a very grey area between legal and illegal, then tell me why the fuck they would concern themselves with the legitimacy of some stupid note that nobody will ever look twice at? The magic-word is ‘perspective’.

Secondly, has it ever occurred to anybody that if I was well enough to get out of bed, onto a bus, wait an hour for a doctor, get the certificate and then back on a bus home, then why the fuck didn’t I just go into work to begin with? This is the part that addles me. What am I proving to an employer by getting this certificate, that, since I was able to get the proof that I am as sick as I said I was, that I’m not really as sick as I said I was? Or how about proof that I didn’t get the rest I needed that day trying to get the thing and now I’ll need another day off? Really, it just presents this notion to me that if I work for you or if I attend your school and I don’t live next door to a doctor, then I should fuck off. To make matters worse, just before you start thinking that these pieces of paper are like the no-holds barred MTV beach-house of paper, they do have one rule: the doctor actually has to see you before you can get one, so it’s not like you can just get your mother to go pick it up for you. I don’t know what they want us to do, get the jellybean-man to make a house-call? Yeah, alright, then I’ll just go polish my Bentley I have parked in the driveway.

I’ve also never appreciated the obligation where I no longer have a choice in whether or not I want to visit the doctor. Another news flash: not everybody is a hypochondriac. People usually don’t have to visit the doctor every time they get a funny feeling in their bodies, so don’t bat an eyelid whenever you come across one of them. But, no, thanks to a broken-belief in this, uh…groundless convention, I have no choice anymore…and I don’t even live in China.

Finally, I don’t know how it all sounds to you, but to me it screams ‘forfeit your privacy or say goodbye to whatever it is you do here’. Please, I’m not a moron, so let’s not assume that just because you’re my superior that it gives you the right to request intimate details; you don’t need to know what I’m doing and where I’m doing it, all the time. To people like me, the flu and a sore leg, I couldn’t give a rats ass who knows about those things, but say something happens that is intimate: dog bites my penis or I fall arse-first onto something thin and pointy, no, that’s the sort of stuff I don’t want others knowing, but, depending on how vague my doctor is, my teachers and my bosses have to know about it…apparently. They might as well just get rid of the notes altogether and start making the doctors surgeries out of glass so that everybody can see everything, how does that sound?

On a similar yet more serious note, what about mental illness? In most cases, you don’t have to tell your employer if you’re a sufferer unless you want to become a cop or shoot in the Olympics, but have an emotional meltdown the night before work and you’re just not feelin’ it for your shift anymore, well apparently now you have to hand somebody a piece of paper breaking the news to them, all because you took a day off. Whether or not a mental physician will definitely go into detail, I wouldn’t know, but regardless of the description, I think just getting a doctor’s note from that sort of specialist, or any specialist for that matter (ever heard of a proctologist?), will paint a good enough picture for somebody, especially if whatever happened was enough for you to take the day off.

Seriously, I must’ve lost one of the puzzle-pieces under the bed again or something, because something’s missing here. I mean, don’t people in the managerial or educational profession ever get sick and go to the doctors? Do they really have no idea how unequivocally difficult it is for somebody to travel a distance to a doctor when they’re unwell and how incredibly simple a doctor’s note is to obtain once if you get there? Yeah, I’m sure they were used appropriately to begin with, but with no formal policing in place or any standardisation at all, we have gotten to a place where there are a litany of different formats and rules out there which each practitioner dictates independently. Here’s a nugget of advice, stop thinking of them as certification from a trained professional and just treat them as a bit of writing from some person with poor penmanship. The only thing a doctor’s certificate can prove is that the person whom requested it has next to no common sense.

And some of these people called themselves my teacher, unbelievable!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Gaps are phat, iiiight!

Up until a couple of years ago, I could slide my tongue between my two front teeth like a string of floss. It was quite a sizeable gap, not that it ever worried me though. Naturally, it was quite a healthy-target for bullies but, fortunately for my sanity, not a very effective one. It wasn’t like my teeth were crooked or unhealthy to the eye; I just had what my orthodontist calls a ‘wide-jaw’, which meant that my teeth had more room to spread their legs, that’s all. Plus, to be frank, I’ve always thought of my eyes as an unrivalled asset, which I figured was a pretty sweet compromise considering that my eyes tend to be open a lot more than my mouth is (on most days). Ask any date I landed in high school, I’m sure they’ll tell you the same.

Despite the gaps size, whenever I would look at myself in the mirror, my teeth never really screamed out at me among things like pimples and hair, I just saw me and that was it. In fact, the only reason I got it fixed was because my mother made me; even she hated it! I actually thought it was pretty cool, I mean, I would watch ‘Jules’ from Pulp Fiction with his gap and he was such a bad motherfucker that he had it stitched on the front of his wallet! Even to this day, I don’t think that gaps in general are really as bad as everybody makes them out to be, but if you’re still not convinced, here are a handful of phat, black, bad motherfuckers who wear their gaps with fuckin’ pride and, yet, still get to take bitches to the candy shop:

Eddie Murphy

Samuel L. JacksonLawrence FishburneFiddySealCarl CoxBobby BrownThere's a bit of black in him...mostly in his name.Leo IhenachoLuther CambpellRudi LickwoodAnthony AndersonTego Calderon


Bump it!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Death of Hope

Some time ago, a friend of mine started a thread on the Facebook-machine asking people to fill out some surveys for a university assignment and I anonymously commend her, because she could not have found a more brainlessly inconsiderate crowd to assemble into a single place and ask.

So, in the interest of immortalising stupidity - a stupidity that is so powerful that people my age who can’t even use a website that bogans visit with ease, even after being told how to, would prefer to complain and be impolite about being in the conversation than to actually leave it – I present to you the highlights of said conversation, the proof that hope died a long time ago.

WARNING: not for the easily-frustrated and people with stupid-seeking missiles.

*I mean, seriously, this bitch was basically just whinging about her smartphone’s Facebook notification feature. Not our problem, you fuckin’ moron!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Two birds with the one joker


To begin with a statement that will more than likely paint me as a black sheep in millions of white ones: I hated The Dark Knight, but just bear with me while I first fill you in on the many years leading up to the 2008 film.

In the 50s, a new superhero hit the printed page, a brainchild of Bob Kane that he called Batman. Adam West would then go on to depict Batman on screen in over a hundred episodes of the live-action nanananana Batman! television series in the ‘60s, with one theatrical release in the mix. And let’s not forget the litany of animated series’, still being voiced by Kevin Conroy. Then, in the late ‘80s and the early ‘90s, Michael Keaton, Bat-suit clad, took Batman to blockbuster status with two films lead by Tim Burton at the directorial-helm. Aided by just the right amount of psychosis that comes with any Batman narrative and that dark undertone found in any Burton film, these instalments were two fantastically crafted Batman films, and then came Joel Schumacher. With the third Batman film in the series, dubbed Batman Forever, Burton stepped down to a producer seat to let Schumacher replace him as director, as well as Keaton handing the black rubber outfit to Val Kilmer. Just from watching Burton’s Batman Returns and then watching Schumacher’s Batman Forever, in a single glance you’d come to realise that each auteur had their own ideas in terms of direction. Burton’s focus in any film is dark and subtle horror, however, Schumacher’s focus seemed to be in favour of all the infants that would be going to see it, juxtaposing Burton’s style with something more light and cartoony, perhaps in a failed attempt to bring us back to the Adam West days. But, despite Batman Forever being watered-down in comparison to what had preceded it, I still consider it a worthy chapter and I still continue to pop the occasional corn in front it. Ultimately, I have always felt that the movie still had some Burton-handy work in it. That’s not all though, the fact that Val Kilmer’s depiction of the titular character is far from condemnation, the performances by Jim Carey and Tommy Lee Jones are highly-entertaining, Nicole Kidman is smokin’ and the addition of Robin, despite being contrived in the narrative, was a fine touch indeed, these things all make it quite enjoyable. The way I see it is that the pre-Bale, post-West Batman film series consists of Batman, Batman Returns and Batman Forever, with Burton on two and Schumacher on one, respectively. That brings us to the aborted placenta that some like to call a Batman film, Batman & Robin

Slow Exhale. Batman & Robin was, to say the least, a bit of a disaster. There are quite a few things I feel are at fault for the failure of Schumacher’s second Batman outing, the first being the total absence of Tim Burton and the second being Hollywood’s favourite doctor. When it came to Batman Forever, it’s my thinking that Burton’s involvement helped dilute Schumacher’s goal to make a family-film, so with him not having any input in Batman & Robin at all, the healthy balance between dark and silly was lost, leaving us with a litany of bad low-temperature related one-liners delivered by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Dr. Doug Ross from E.R. as Batman. Yuk! And that brings me to the real thing that doomed this film, George fucking Clooney. Now, they could’ve picked anybody, but they picked none-other than Clooney, an actor who hadn’t starred in any action film prior to that (and has only been in one or two since), and they decided to cast him in a movie with a plethora of action scenes? Nonsense! For those that have been awarded the privilege of never seeing Batman & Robin, in many people’s opinion as well as my own, if Batman were a franchise that primarily focused on Bruce Wayne (Batman when he’s not Batman) then I would applaud Clooney’s performance, because essentially, when hasn’t Clooney played a rich bachelor in a film? Hell, the man is a rich bachelor; he doesn’t need to act! So, then of course, when it came to being Bruce Wayne’s alter-ego - you know, who the franchise is really about - Clooney just couldn’t shake the fact that he isn’t any good in anything that doesn’t deal in million dollar glances and dramatic-dialogue. For your information, this film did so badly, both critically and financially, that Warner Bros. subsequently cancelled the contracts they had written up to make another Schumacher-directed Batman with Clooney reprising the role, ending this film-series right then and there. It also got 11 Razzie nominations and was the first film in the series not to be considered by the Academy (not that I’m saying that I care what the Academy thinks). Needless to say, the whole film side of the comic-book character seemed beyond repair.

That brings me to the Nolan-era, the Batman renaissance, if you will. If I have anything to thank Batman & Robin for, it’s ending one series to make way for something better, Christopher Nolan’s reboot, Batman Begins. Batman Begins is your typical how the superhero became a superhero type narrative, but that really doesn't sell it, because it was brilliantly executed. Why? Because it doesn’t do it’s dealings in the cheap bullshit theatrics that so many other superhero movies do. It’s patient, it’s full-bodied, it’s emotional and it’s carefully crafted. I won’t lie, I think that Nolan is quite a director, not only that but the film itself has a king’s ransom cast behind it who collectively portray these solid characters that I so adore; of course, Christian Bale being, in my opinion, a commendable choice for Batman. But really, the actual reason I think so highly of it is Liam Neeson’s performance, and more importantly, his on-screen chemistry with Bale. The dialogue between them and the character’s overall influence on Bruce Wayne’s transformation into Batman sends shivers down my fucking spine. Also, despite the fact that Michael Caine was sadly replacing Michael Gough from the Burton/Schumacher days, I was happy to see him play Alfred. I just felt that the story really hit new highs in almost every aspect a cinematic experience can; it was just so visceral…to me, anyway. Unfortunately - something that puts me in quite an aforementioned minority - it was downhill from there, thanks to…throat clear…Heath Ledgar. (Cue the guy who says that I can’t say that because he’s dead.)

Whenever I think of the 2008 film The Dark Knight, I feel like I have stepped into a twilight-zone of sorts. In a way, I feel kind of like everybody is just watching Batman & Robin again, but in this topsy-turvy alternate reality, they love it. The problem here was that Batman Begins had its fair-share of chit-chat and people found that booorrrrrinnnng! I'm not one to factualise taste, but people need to understand that there's a fine line between taste and a short attention span. My best guess is that a lot of people had been conditioned by anything that preceded this film to see the Batman character from the very start to the very finish, but to walk into a cinema to see Batman Begins with a similar predisposition would be akin to going to see Cameron’s Titanic just to see a ship sink; Batman, in his truest form, only first appears at about an hour into the film. So, the masses wanted something more and, by comparison, The Dark Knight seemed to be the answer.

And, finally, that brings me to the 2008 two hour tirade on my senses people like to call The Dark Knight. But my issues with the film itself aside, my biggest gripe is not having a real firm grasp on what people are actually referring to when they say that The Dark Knight is a ‘good movie’. When I say it, I’m talking about a Batman film, but my fear is that whenever anybody else is saying it, they're just talking about the last movie Heath Ledgar was in before he had a fatal overdose, a film in which he played a deranged lunatic.

I mean, from his death forward, it was nothing but ‘Heath Ledgar’s death’ this and ‘the Joker role killed him’ that and ‘how well he immersed himself in the role’, and they were right about that one, he played the shit out of it, but so did Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart and, arguably, Christian Bale with all of their respective roles, but it’s success had little-nothing to do with them, or even Chistopher Nolan for that matter. The way people go on about it, they should change the title to just ‘Heath Ledgar’. “How good was ‘Heath Ledgar’?” “Oh yeah, how insane was Heath Ledgar’s fight scene with that guy in the black costume in ‘Heath Ledagr’!?” That's not a highly-regarded film to me, that's some thing that was lucky enough to be ensconced in hype because someone who was in it died.

Even the film's marketing after his death felt at the very, very least partially influenced, not that I can prove it. For the sake of shutting naive The Dark Knight-lovers the fuck up, for years now, I’ve actually been telling a little white-lie that the film’s marketing was changed to focus more on Ledgar’s character, Joker, but luckily for Nolan and unlucky for me if people start fact-checking the things I've said, it would appear that everything was always intended to be focused on that character anyway. As I said though, it felt influenced and most likely was, but, to my dismay, you can't prove feelings and hunches. From what I could dig up from just looking at the film’s posters, it’s hard to judge what the marketing team initially had planned for us, especially since advertising for the film was still only in its early stages prior to Ledgar’s death, with only two posters being released that only hinted, but didn’t show, the Joker. However, the reason why I still stand behind my groundless theory is because I do have one huge piece of evidence: the real world. Scenes in films get deleted, any person who’s watched a DVD will know this, and we can't act like editors could actually bring themselves to delete a Joker-dominated scene over a Batman-dominated one, a character whom was played by an actor whom is still alive; not that we’ll ever know what was deleted since Nolan won’t show us any of it. We can't pretend that the bean counters behind the film weren’t salivating all over themselves at the very thought of the movie-goers eating The Dark Knight up like it was our last meals, more so than when Ledgar was alive. You can’t act like those same bean counters hadn’t learned from similar past experiences, like Carole Lombard and James Dean, both of whom were acclaimed for their posthumous-performances. You can't act like the marketing team didn't try to squeeze every drop of juice out of what was about to become a bull-rush of idiots who want need to see this movie. Don’t have any misconceptions about any of this. The film industry is not unlike the funeral industry; death is money to these people.

My hate for The Dark Knight depends heavily on my impatience for people who base their taste on how many explosions their attention span requires every minute. It's all bullshit. And these are the exact same people who, in their minds, somehow extract The Dark Knight from the Batman franchise entirely into a standalone film and say that they love it, meanwhile refusing to watch or even acknowledge the rest of the franchise, most importantly Batman Begins, because they are all, apparently, ‘boring’ films. And again, I'm not here to force taste, I'm just saying to not base it on how long you can sit still for. I could give you a long-list of films which I could never sit through again but still think were excellent. The fucking movie-going public just make me sick with their goldfish-standards, being too distracted by smoke and mirrors to see anything actually worthwhile. Just once would I like to hear somebody praise something from Batman Begins; anything! Liam Neeson, Tom Wilkinson, Katie Holmes, the batmobile, christ, the fucking homeless man will do just fine, thank you! Anything that will spare me another tunnel-driven, half-witted conversation about how great The Dark Knight is out of every film made in the last century, solely due to Heath Ledgar. Right now, The Dark Knight currently sits at number eight on IMDb's Top 250 list, which, to me, is a downright travesty to film-makers everywhere, especially when you look down the list and see some of the titles The Dark Knight has left behind. Number eight! Let's just say that if I were Martin Scorsesee right now and somebody even uttered the name Christopher Nolan around me, I would bury their gutted corpse out in the desert like Joe Pesci did. The thing is that The Dark Knight was alright, albeit exhausting, but alright, in part due to Heath Ledgar, but it’s not as good as everybody has been made to believe it is. Frankly, I’ve been disappointed since my very first viewing because I basically feel like, after everything this particular film franchise has been through already, Christopher Nolan has just made a similar mistake that Joel Schumacher made with Batman & Robin, definitely not as bad, but it’s still there. I know that if I ever somehow made nice with Nolan, my first request would be to go to his private viewing room and watch from start to finish whatever cut of the film they were up to right before Heath Ledgar’s overdose, because I’m willing to bet my own dick that had he not died and they released what Nolan would show me per that request, it would not be considered the eighth best film. The Dark Knight Rises will be the third and final chapter in this series, which, despite my anger with the last, I’m pretty excited about, but I swear to whatever god you swear to, if any one person ruins that excitement by even mentioning Tom Hardy’s name and Heath Ledgar’s name in the same sentence, I’ll eat my fucking sock! Keep your half-baked The Dark Knight-praise far away from this film. Uggh!