Thursday, 28 December 2006

Wednesday, 20 December 2006

In memory of Carl Sagan

Carl Sagan died 10 years ago today and his admirers are organising a blog-a-thon in his memory.

I first stumbled across him when I watched Contact and subsequently read the book, which I enjoyed a great deal. So the least I could do was to contribute to the effort!

Monday, 11 December 2006

Movies of the year

It wasn't a great year for movies but I saw a couple of good ones late on. I enjoyed Little Children and Little Miss Sunshine was excellent (which includes music from Sufjan Stevens).

But my favourite was The Squid and the Whale, which was wonderful.

You see any good ones?

Sunday, 10 December 2006


One of Microsoft's methods of marketing Vista. Some of the episodes are amusing.

Sunday, 3 December 2006

Books of the year

It must be Christmas... yesterday's Herald had a "books of the year" article. It was the usual selections -- people who should be reading serious stuff were reading escapist fluff and people who you might expect to read fluff were reading serious books. So Jack McConnell chose The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas as his book of the year. Nicola Sturgeon chose Weekend. Ruth Wishart chose Among the Dead Cities. And some unknown (to me) writer chose Failed States. Sheena McDonald said she liked to read books that take her beyond her comfort zone and selected The Third Reich in Power. It looks like Jack and Nicola prefer La-La Land.

Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Saturday, 25 November 2006

Thursday, 23 November 2006

Wednesday, 22 November 2006

Celtic 1-0 Man Utd

Great result last night - if not a great performance. We deserved some luck after the bad luck we've had in recent years.

Wee Gordon's worked wonders with a limited squad. And it looks like the biscuit tin will be opened. My son (John) is going to Copenhagen next month to celebrate.

Friday, 10 November 2006

Why doesn't this surprise me?

Greg Palast article on vote rigging in USA

Wednesday, 8 November 2006

Malachi Ritscher's suicide

A man called Malachi Ritscher set himself on fire in protest at the Iraq war in Chicago last Friday. He left a suicide note.

Sunday, 5 November 2006

Friday, 3 November 2006

Not Better Late Than Never

Interesting article in Rolling Stone about the current US media.

Thursday, 26 October 2006

Wednesday, 25 October 2006

Sunday, 22 October 2006

Saturday, 21 October 2006

Sunday, 15 October 2006

Movies, music and football

Went to see Little Miss Sunshine last week and watched The Squid and the Whale on DVD. Two very different films (one uplifting and one definitely not) but both very good and highly recommended.

Listening to John Meyer's new album and my daughter gave me Beck's new album to listen to. I'm enjoying both but especially Meyer's songs.

I went to see Mac Floyd last night at Paisley Town Hall. They were genuinely good. The highlight of the performance was their version of Any Colour You Like, which was almost perfect.

Yesterday's results were great. At 1-0 down to Dundee Utd I was a little worried but Strachan is pretty good at recovering from situations like this. I had a feeling that Inverness might upset Rangers - maybe a draw I thought - so a win was a bonus. The league's not over, and Le Guen is a decent coach, but things are looking good.

Friday, 13 October 2006

Wednesday, 11 October 2006

Tuesday, 10 October 2006

US State Fascism?

US quotes V Nazi quotes

Robert Fisk Article on the Arab Conflicts

Robert Fisk is one of the few (very few) journalists who understands the Arab world and the history of Western control and manipulation.
He has lived in Beirut for years and has reported on all the conflicts and met with all the main players (including Bin Laden)

Monday, 9 October 2006

Sunday, 8 October 2006

Thursday, 5 October 2006

The March to WW3

Still looking for Utopia

Site for PARECON (Participatory Economics)

Tuesday, 3 October 2006

Bush tears up the Constitution

Link to article about US Senate granting greater powers to Bush and tearing up the constitution.

Monday, 2 October 2006


Thursday, 28 September 2006

Saturday, 23 September 2006

Wednesday, 6 September 2006

Settler children after-school entertainment

Under the eyes of Israeli police and soldiers, a group of Israeli children attack Palestinian women.

Tuesday, 29 August 2006

Monday, 28 August 2006

Saturday, 26 August 2006

Champions League

It's great that Celtic are back in the group stages. European games are great but I doubt if Celtic would have made it if they had had to qualify. I watched the Inverness game and I thought it was the poorest Celtic team for a number of years. The new signings should help but I think Petrov will be a huge loss. Last season Diggy talked about Celtic being pedestrian and that was very evident against Inverness. I do fear for us in this group as I dont want to think about Rooney or Ronaldo against our defence or for that matter any decent attack. I think we need Balde back. At the moment we seem to have lots of players who are similar in talent but not really special. Nakamura is special at free kicks. If we lose Petrov which looks likely, who could command the game? I don't think Lennon is up to it.

Basically, in Europe we will really need to play way above our current form if we are to progress even into UEFA. One nil down to Hibs just now. We need to play a lot better just to win the league.

Wednesday, 23 August 2006

Radiohead in Edinburgh

I went to see Radiohead last night at Meadowbank Stadium in Edinburgh (part of "T at the Fringe"). I've never seen them live before and thought Thom Yorke was brilliant. They played a few tracks from their forthcoming album all of which sounded good. Great gig. Great night.

Monday, 14 August 2006

Tuesday, 8 August 2006

Analysis of Lebanon conflict

This is an excellent article on the 'realpolitik' behind the Lebanon conflict.

Monday, 7 August 2006

John Pilger article on US Empire

This is a good article into the Orwellian nature of our society

Tuesday, 1 August 2006

Friday, 28 July 2006

Friday, 21 July 2006

Top 100 Music Videos of All Time

There are lots of "top 100" music video websites but most give you a snip at best. This one gives the full video via YouTube. The list is a little odd with some famous videos missing but there are lots of good ones included.

Monday, 17 July 2006

Friday, 14 July 2006

Photos of Glaswegians

30,000 tagged photos from 1989 to 1993.

Tuesday, 11 July 2006

Sunday, 9 July 2006

World Cup Final

Tonight's game should be good. I didn't fancy France at all before the WC but I predicted a top four finish for Italy (well done Diggy for predicting that they would reach the final). I think that tonight's game will finish: France - 2 Italy - 1.

So, this evening, get yourself a cold beer, a soft seat and enjoy some pre-match entertainment:

Saturday, 8 July 2006

Sunday, 2 July 2006

Friday, 30 June 2006

Periodic table

I might have studied Chemistry beyond O Grade if this had been around 30 years ago.

Tuesday, 27 June 2006

Sunday, 25 June 2006

Tuesday, 6 June 2006

World Cup

A while back we talked about England's chances of winning the WC. Sven was the weak link but they had a great team. Now they have no Rooney, Owen is distinctly off the boil, Cole is just back from injury, Ferdinand has had a poor season and their midfield looks a bit muddled. Or is that just wishful thinking? Can you wait to see that robotic dance again? Oh yes and Sven is still the weak link.

I can't see past Brazil but the French forward line looks good. Holland also look strong up front but that is a difficult group. I wonder if the Ivory Coast will be the first African team to do really well. There's always Germany.

For the first time I have seen FIFA rankings. They are complete rubbish. USA number 4? Linking to an earlier blog, this is not the time to be without television. I think it should be great coverage especially on digital. I used the red button to watch the English Cup Final this year. There should be a lot more flexibility in when to watch and what to watch. But anyway the games will finish about ten so there is still time to get into the back garden with a ball and score a few goals. Get practicing that robot dance. You know you want to.

Saturday, 3 June 2006

There's only one thing worth debating online

Online quarrelling is addictive, in precisely the same way Tetris is addictive. It appeals to the 'lab rat' part of your brain; the annoying, irrepressible part that adores repetitive pointlessness and would gleefully make you pop bubblewrap till Doomsday if it ever got its way. More.

Friday, 2 June 2006

Thursday, 25 May 2006

Sunday, 21 May 2006

Thursday, 4 May 2006

Top 10 science fiction movies

The Guardian has published a list of the top 10 science fiction movies. Some good films are included but I would have added Contact and the original Terminator, and removed Star Wars. And where is Dark Star?

Sunday, 30 April 2006

Asimov quotes

Some of my favourites:
  • Life is pleasant. Death is peaceful. It's the transition that's troublesome.
  • I do not fear computers. I fear lack of them.
  • Part of the inhumanity of the computer is that it is completely honest.

KAYA PF Hoya RM RM90 RM100 Shott 27 30 30.5 37 43 46 49 50 52 58 mm

At last, a camera filter with X-ray vision.

Friday, 28 April 2006

Living With War

Neil Young has released his latest album on the Internet. It's a collection of anti-war songs. He has made it available on the Internet for a limited period of time. It can be streamed here. A downloadable WMA version has hit the BitTorrent sites.

Monday, 24 April 2006


Opus was the name of the other record shop that you remembered Bobby. I couldn't even remember the shop never mind what it was called. But I have my contacts!

Saturday, 22 April 2006


Monday, 17 April 2006

Friday, 14 April 2006

Thursday, 13 April 2006

Thursday, 6 April 2006

Hail to Gordon!

I was among the group of Celtic supporters who welcomed Gordon Strachan as coach - but I had my doubts during the early months. Last night's victory over Hearts sealed a tremendous achievement by Strachan - 20 point lead over our nearest rivals with six games to go. It's even better than Martin O'Neill's achievements (in the SPL).

Strachan came into a team in turmoil. His job was made more difficult by the experienced players who (it appeared) did not welcome him. When Dennis said after we won the Cup last season that he would get rid of them all, I disagreed, feeling we needed some continuity. He might have been right. I don't think many (any?) of MON's XI will appear next season. And he's achieved this with limited funds - and some pretty poor players.

I've been most impressed with his tactical changes and substitutions during games. He seems to sense (along with most supporters) when things need changed and (unlike MON) he makes the changes that most fans would make. Last night was a prime example - Nakamura was doing nothing and was replaced by Stephen Pearson (who didn't do much either but at least he put his foot in) - an obvious substitution that MON would have obstinately refused to make.

So, well done Gordon. Now, give him some money to sort out that defence!

Saturday, 1 April 2006

One concert per year

I'm lucky if I go to one concert per year. It's probably less than this. In the last few years I've seen Ryan Adams (which was a bit disappointing) and Christy Moore (who is always excellent). Last week I went to see Jackson Browne at the Concert Hall in Glasgow, a really good venue. I've liked him since school. I remember buying his second album For Everyman in that record shop that was near Paisley library but I don't remember what it was called.

On new music I was listening to the Artic Monkeys when I was in our only music shop during Friday lunch time. I thought it sounded good. I wonder if I can get my daughter to buy it.

Man sells wife's box on eBay because his cock won't fit in

Tuesday, 28 March 2006

Friday, 17 March 2006

Saturday, 11 March 2006

UEFA tackle Rangers' sectarianism

UEFA has moved to charge Rangers over their sectarian conduct. There was an interesting discussion on Friday's 90 Minutes on Radio Scotland when Graeme Spiers and David Egdar of the Rangers Support Trust discussed the problem.

Monday, 6 March 2006

Sunday, 5 March 2006

All Marketers are Liars

Seth Godin writes interesting books on marketing. This video shows him giving a lecture at Google and summarises his latest book.

Friday, 3 March 2006

New Lara Croft

Unknown Top Shop sales assistant is the new Lara Croft. Must be her great guns.

Monday, 27 February 2006

Like a virgin

“Now my sister is thinking of becoming a virgin again for her 45th birthday to surprise her husband." More.

Sunday, 26 February 2006


A new series about time begins this evening on BBC4. Sounds interesting. Unless there is no such thing as time.

Wednesday, 22 February 2006

Death by a thousand cuts.

This article is just a reminder of the way the zionists are continuing the appropriation of Palestinian land.
I wonder if Steven Speilberg will make a film about it?

Sunday, 19 February 2006

This week's TV

Champions League is back. So we can enjoy Arsenal v Real Madrid on Tuesday and have a snigger at Rangers on Wednesday. Two good movies - Chomskey's Manufacturing Consent tonight (ITV4) and Capturing the Friedmans (C4) on Thursday. The Mark Steel Lectures return on Thursday (BBC4) as does The Apprentice on Wednesday.

Wednesday, 15 February 2006

Monday, 13 February 2006

Ronaldinho video revealed

A famous Nike advert claims to show Ronaldinho's outstanding ball skills. But it looks like it was a fake.

Friday, 10 February 2006


Interesting article by John Pilger on the need to keep the dollar as the base currency for oil payments.

Other articles on the same subject are :

Tuesday, 7 February 2006

Sunday, 5 February 2006

Saturday, 4 February 2006

Space travel

This article is very long but it goes into some detail on space travel and its difficulties. Kaku writes very clearly and although you don't have a clue about the physics you can follow his thoughts. There is a more interesting article on called parallel universes, the Matrix and superintelligence, which I had read before but I couldn't get the page to open. It includes a post from a person who claims to have come back from the dead! Makes some of the May 22 posts seem sensible in comparison.

I've read Kaku is to front a four part series on time on BBC 4 this February. He has already been on the BBC. He seems to be a very good communicator.

Monday, 30 January 2006

Desperate women

I caught a programme called "Desperate women" on TV on Saturday night. It was presented by Janet Street Porter who tried to find out why so many women feel dissatified with their lives. It was pretty interesting and I agreed with most of what she said - that the media portayed an image of women that made most ordinary people feel unhappy. She targeted cosmetic surgery and TV's programmes such as Ten years younger.

But it struck me that JSP was an odd choice of presenter - sporting a hair style that would be better suited on a 16 year-old - and I couldn't help but think that she was simply annoyed that she didn't have the guts to go under the surgeon's knife herself.

At least she didn't blame it all on men ("What do men and women have in common? They both hate women."). She made a point of criticising female journalists whose main aim appeared to be spotting cellulite on celebrities. But, oddly, there was no criticism of the women who chose to buy the mindless magazines or read the poisenous newspapers or watch the celebrity-obsessed TV programmes - even the women who chose to undergo surgery were presented as victims. The Department of Health isn't so shy. It advises people considering cosmetic surgery to see a psychologist.

Tuesday, 24 January 2006

Life in the universe

Interesting lecture from Stephen Hawking on evolution and life in the universe.

I was a little surprised that he asks why we don't see lots of "space tourists" if there is intelligent life in the universe. Any civilisation that can travel through space would have to be very advanced - and any advanced civilisation would have well developed rules about engaging with primitive species (us). So the absence of aliens is not a problem. I think that Carl Sagan got it right - if there is intelligent life in the universe there will be age-old protocols for communicating with new worlds.

Monday, 23 January 2006

Thursday, 19 January 2006

Great 404 Error

Warning - Sound required but don't play in front of children.

Saturday, 14 January 2006

Strachan's rollercoaster continues

At 2-0 today I said that the game was not over. At 2-2 I was confident that
we would score again. That's what it's like being a Celtic supporter these
days. We have a kamikaze defence, a schizophrenic midfield and a decent
attack. Never a dull moment. Every time we or the the opposition attack, a
goal is on the cards.

Nakamura typifies the team. Lightweight, unpredictable, at times sublime,
and at times infuriating. It's the antithesis to last season when MON
fashioned a team that was deadly predictable - and deadly boring.

Strachan needs to reign in some of the creativity. I don't want to go back
to MON's style of play - but I want some of the uncertainty removed. We
could play Renfrew Juniors next weekend and lose. He needs to find a little
consistency. And if that means losing some flair then so be it.

I supported Strachan's appointment but unless he sorts out some of these
problems now he might not be the man for the job. If we're heading in the
right direction, we're going in a pretty round-about way.

Thursday, 12 January 2006