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The Others

Posted 5 May 2002, 10.53 pm by Villager

I'm not a great fan of horror movies. The Others starts off as a horror-movie amateur such as myself would expect; big ol' house on a fog-ridden landscape, with little civilisation in sight. Set in wartime Allied territory, the focus is on a household whereby a single mother takes care of her light-wary children soon to be helped by a dodgy-looking band of servants.

I'll try not to spoil it, but through a long and somewhat tedious chain of events the mother (Nicole Kidman) grows ever more paranoid about the possibility that the house is haunted. The children are both excellent in their performances and deserve far more praise than their more famous co-star.

The plot is tiresome, though. Interspersed with the odd moment of tension is some stereotypical acting on Kidman's part and dull and predictable developments. The twist at the end is somewhat expected, and the good points don't really stand up to the bad ones. Worth watching, but not unless there's nothing else.

referendum

Posted 5 May 2002, 1.30 pm by marilee

About a month ago, pretty much everyone living in British Columbia got a referendum ballot in the mail. The referendum looks like this:

Whereas the Government of British Columbia is committed to negotiating workable, affordable treaty settlements that will provide certainty, finality and quality; Do you agree that the Provincial Government should adopt the following principles to guide its participation in treaty negotiations?

1. Private property should not be expropriated for treaty settlements.
2. The terms and conditions of leases and licences should be respected; fair compensation for unavoidable disruption of commercial interests should be ensured.
3. Hunting, fishing and recreational opportunities on Crown land should be ensured for all British Columbians.
4. Parks and protected areas should be maintained for the use and benefit of all British Columbians.
5. Province-wide standards of resource management and environmental protection should continue to apply.
6. Aboriginal self-government should have the characteristics of local government, with powers delegated from Canada and British Columbia.
7. Treaties should include mechanisms for harmonizing land use planning between Aboriginal governments and neighbouring local governments.
8. The existing tax exemptions for Aboriginal people should be phased out.

Sounds relatively normal, right? A little hard to understand, but everything that is political in nature is a little hard to understand. Although, I'm guessing, if you read the questions over a couple times, that cloudy sense of confusion will likely start forming into a heavy sense that something is uneasy. The more you try to understand the questions, the less they sit right. It is also possible you will start to feel angry. Maybe thoughts such as, "Aboriginals can take my land away?" or "Aboriginals don't pay tax?" are running through your head.

The fact is that the questions listed on this referendum are ambiguous and misleading. Some of the questions are completely useless for the BC government to even ask, as the provincial government does not have the power to put through such actions.

The Canadian Constitution protects Aboriginals and other minority groups, such as French Canadians, and only the federal government can change such laws. In fact, the federal government has publicly stated that the provincial government does not have the power to change treaty negotiations and that it is wrong that the referendum implies such.

What I find interesting is the fact that there really isn't a need for the referendum in the first place. If the BC Liberals wanted to adopt the principles stated on the referendum ( or at least the ones that are legally possible) there is nothing that is stopping them from doing so. There is no law stating that they must ask our opinion before putting these principles in place.

The first question on the referendum already is a truth in British Columbia. Private land very rarely is an issue when it comes to treaty settlements. When it is an issue, it is usually because someone offers to sell the land and someone else wants to buy it, but never because Natives force owners to sell land. The only reason why it is on the referendum is so people will get upset and worried that their land could play a part in treaty negotiations. No one wants their land taken away from them. The question is only there as a fear tactic, it sets you up to hate the Natives and answer in favor of the government for the rest of the ballot.

Question number 6 would take away the rights that Natives have to govern themselves. It would basically mean that Native governments would be powerless and the provincial government would gain all control. Native self-government is protected by the Constitution, and should not be brought into question by the provincial government.

The last question is also clearly a ridiculous one for the provincial government to be asking. If it were the federal government asking, although many Canadians would likely answer "no," it would be acceptable. It all comes down to the fact that the provincial government does not have this right, so why they even ask is beyond me and the majority of BC.

Voting "no" to the majority or even all of the questions may seem like the right thing to do, but think again. If you can't even figure out what yes means on some of these questions, then what exactly does no mean? By voting at all, you are wrongly acknowledging the provincial government's belief that they have the right to change Aboriginal rights which are protected by the Crown. Also, a majority no vote is not binding, so in essence you have thrown away your vote while supporting the provincial governments false implications and offensive treatment of the Aboriginals.

On the other side of the world, in Pakistan, another completely useless and ridiculous referendum took place.

What group were you in at school?

Posted 5 May 2002, 12.33 pm by Craig


Visit Site.

Umbrellas

Posted 3 May 2002, 7.06 pm by Alexander

I've never once bought an umbrella, but I've always had one. Somehow I manage to find them, or borrow them, or get given them as gifts or as promotional items. Often I have multiple umbrellas, of varying shapes and sizes, secreted about my house. They're useful to have, especially when you live in England as I do.

Today I got wet on the way to work. I've lost all my umbrellas. Every one. Not at once you understand. One by one they get loaned or given away, they break or get pinched from public transport. As I sat down at my desk with my wet trousers clinging to my legs, I reflected upon this state of affairs.

Yes, I am currently without umbrellas. If I see it's raining outside, I have to face the prospect of getting wet. The most interesting thing, though, is that for me to have owned those umbrellas in the first place, someone else would have had to go without. Someone lost the umbrella for me to find it. Someone had to trudge in the rain in order to give me one as a gift. So really, my loss is someone else's gain - except in the case of the broken umbrellas. I see those as a natural ending of the cycle - this finite cycle of lost, found, lost, found.

How many umbrellas are there in the world? How many get sold? How long before the cycle comes back round to me and I find another one, abandoned in a bus shelter, loaned from a friend, left in the hatstand at work?

I guess I'll just play it by ear and get wet in the meantime, but I'm not worried. Nobody in this world goes without an umbrella for very long.

Am I the last person to see this?

Posted 3 May 2002, 3.11 am by Berly

This is a terrific collection of band flyers.

Gig Posters.

File this one under "why didn't I think of that?!"

Satanism - not as cool as the kids at school say.

Posted 1 May 2002, 8.00 pm by James

This is being posted quite later than I "promised", but fuck it, it's here now. Don't forget, I still haven't posted the sequel to my bit on robots and the fate of mankind, and all that.. School is a harsh mistress, m'friends. Anyway..

The Satanic Bible is, if nothing else, an intriguing bit of work. When you're a faithless maggot like Spooky or myself, Anton LaVey's arguments on the hypocrisy and worthlessness of Christianity are appealing enough - the slightly "taboo" nature of the material only makes it a cooler reading experience. All in all, if you're only looking at the first part of the Bible, it comes off as an intelligent, modern look at the crumbling pillars of modern religion.

But as you've already probably guessed, that's not all.

As a younger man, I imagined myself as a card-carrying member of the Church of Satan. Literally. I wanted that red, baphomet-inscribed business card to keep in my wallet. But when I summoned up the testicular fortitude to buy The Satanic Bible for myself a couple of years ago, I was surprised at how...well...hokey it is. How about an excerpt? This comes from an entry entitled 'Invocation Employed Towards the Conjuration of Lust', and is the end of a chant intended to get you laid, apparently:

"My rod is athrust! The penetrating force of my venom shall shatter the sanctity of that mind which is barren of lust; and as the seed falleth, so shall its vapours be spread within that reeling brain benumbing it to helplessness according to my will! In the name of the great god Pan, may my secret thoughts be marshalled into the movements of the flesh of that which I desire! Shemhamforash! Hail Satan!" Wow-ee. Now this is a lot less like a product of a competent philosopher, and a lot more like the end of Rosemary's Baby.

And if there is any doubt about the weirdness of this (un)holy book, why not flip forward a few pages until you find the 'Enochian Keys'? Enochian is "[a] magical language used in Satanic ritual..[and]..thought to be older than Sanskrit." The 'Enochian Keys' are a series of calls in which "the meaning of the words, combined with the quality of the words, unite to create a pattern of sound which can cause tremendous reaction in the atmosphere." Further, "the barbaric tonal qualities of this language give it a truly magical effect which cannot be described." So...let's read 'em already..

Ol sonuf vaoresaji, gohu IAD Balata, elanusaha caelazod: sobrazod-ol Roray i ta nazodapesad, Giraa ta maelpereji, das hoel-qo qaa notahoa zodimezod, od comemahe ta nobeloha zodien; soba tahil ginonupe pereje aladi, das vaurebes obolehe giresam. Casarem ohorela..." And it pretty much just goes on like that.

So what can we derive from the totally non-sensical nature of the inner-pages of LaVey's Satanic Bible? If I had to offer my opinion, I'd say it's just a clever money-making ruse, like all the others before it. It intrigues the intellectual in the beginning, and drags the poor reader from there forth through a bunch of unsubstantiated, mystical drivel. The transition is clever, though, as you might already be too interested to stop reading by the time you reach the point-of-no-return. Maybe you'll be a full fledged "Satanist" by the end, and if so, I can hear the giggles coming from the LaVey estate from here. After all, you'll then have to buy the other Satanic tomes they've churned out over the years, not to mention the other hundred books from the "ESOTERIC BULLSHIT" section of Barnes And Noble. Aleister Crowley? The Marilyn Manson autobiography? Sure, they're all there.

Personally and after careful consideration, I have to respond to this material with a hearty "No sir, I don't like it." I prefer a belief system that has a bit of integrity, thank you very much. I'm a Scientologist.

Klez - not good.

Posted 30 April 2002, 9.04 pm by Alexander

You may have heard about the Klez virus. It is extremely widespread and was described by McAfee as "A real fucking pain in the ringpiece". Our good buddies and fans of the site, Symantec, have a fix available for download from their website. Please take 5 mins to download it and run it. Think about the children. And the dolphins.

Click here you disease riddled varmint.

Ooh look I used html to create a link to another website. That wasn't hard.

Communicate.

Posted 29 April 2002, 1.25 am by Waldo

I’m not sure where or how I first stumbled upon this website, but it’s mere existence actually cheered me up. All that it consists of is a text box with a message from the creators and the following above it: Obviously, if you want a reply, an e-mail address would be most helpful.

It’s an offer of communication that brightens my day more than anything else has in a long time. Very cool. (edit: totally cannot get the HTML to work on this one because i'm a moron, url follows: http://frich.flatirons.org )

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This was an illustration for a poem called 'Edmonton, thy cemetary' by Stevie Smith. It's ink and pen on wet paper, a technique I was using quite extensively at the time.


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Hmph

80s candy bars were pretty good

only because i traded it for a candy bar in the 80's.

lol we all know you don't have a soul ghoti

my soul for some carbs...

But of course!

Yo ! Does this work ?

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