Monthly Archives: November 2010

The chances of anything coming from Rhea? One to one, quite possibly.

So if we lookey here we can see that NASA has a press conference arranged for this coming Thursday. In it there will be an announcement, or talk, or mention, or something relating to the search for extraterrestrial life. As in, aliens. As in, creatures from another world. As in, oh jesus crikey I’m shitting myself.

But then normal, rational Ian takes over. What’s the announcement going to be about? I have a few speculative brain-farts I’d like to throw out, and none of them are particularly funny or interesting. No, wait – they’re all really funny and incredibly interesting. Yeah, that’s the way to encourage “web” “traffic”.

You may have seen recently that they – ‘they’ being the space twits at NASA – discovered that Saturn’s moon Rhea had some of that oxygen stuff in its atmosphere, along with some of that carbon dioxide stuff. Now this got tongues wagging – as far as my limited understanding goes, the presence of oxygen and/or carbon dioxide could very well indicate the presence of biological organisms on the planet. It could also mean some specific chemical reactions are being set off that are nothing to do with living things, we don’t know yet. But I would say my bet is on… hmm. I don’t know. I may postulate some more.

My second theory is that it’s nothing at all, and they’re just calling a press conference as it’s something they do quite often. It will be some blokes saying “we had a look, we didn’t find anything. Soz.” There’s actually a fair chance this will happen, actually. Not that I want it to.

My own, personal, third theory that nobody else in the world could ever come up with is presented in picture form:

We’re doomed.

I will be awaiting the announcement with bated breath, however. I’m sceptical it will be anything of real note, but that’s just how I am. While I don’t believe it will be any kind of monumental announcement, that doesn’t mean I’m not hopeful it is. Even if it’s a shitty single-celled organism – it’s a fucking alien species from another planet.

And to think I was stupid enough to write that story about life being found under the frozen surface of Europa. What a fool I was! Ahem. I mean… err… I never wrote that story. I am definitely not a nerd. I really don’t want to watch Star Trek right now. Hmm.

Wow, I’m actually excited. That’s broken my cynicism-rhythm. Don’t let me down, NASA – give us some more things to put in front of fundamentalist theists to see how they explain these away (N.B. this is not the only reason I want them to have found something, it’s just something that popped into my head now).

Squeeeeeeeeee! (That’s probably how the aliens talk, too)

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I just want to tell you both, good luck. We’re all counting on you.

I have mentioned in the past my distinct love for Leslie Nielsen, so it wasn’t exactly the best morning today when I awoke to learn of his death. Here’s the video of that joke, seeing as I apparently didn’t link it last time. It was the funniest joke ever written before he died, and it’s still the funniest now.

Anyway, I was a little downhearted this morning – something that has only happened after a handful of celebrity deaths, as I couldn’t give two shits about most of them – when I saw this on Reddit:

Safe to say, it’s one of the funniest, warmest and most spontaneous tributes to a person I’ve ever seen. It’s made me love that site even more than I already do. Click it to make it bigger, and if you know what it’s on about then I think we’ll get along just fine.

While his output was questionable at times, there’s no denying the effect the Canadian had on my formative years. Granted, he won’t have even had a hand in writing the vast majority – if not all – of the jokes, but he’s intrinsically linked in my mind to having the body of a god under his slightly-flabby looking exterior, to the reams of deadpan one liners and to generally just being one of those people I wanted to hug. There aren’t many of those around, and it seems they’re getting less by the day.

I could go on, but there’s little else left to say. He wasn’t a legendary comedian – he was just a fucking brilliant comic actor. But if that’s all you ever were, it’s a damn good impression to leave on the world.


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This is probably about the 20th filler entry I’ve posted here

323 posts down, this is number 324. I tell you, for someone as utterly inane, boring and pointless as myself, to have come up with 323 things to write about is nothing short of a fucking miracle. But I’ll be honest – it’s getting difficult. I’m finding it harder and harder to come up with something to write.

You see, I don’t just write things that I think people will enjoy reading – I want to write about something I’m actually bothered enough to write about. This makes things difficult. If I just wanted to write things you all cared about it would be opinions on the X Factor, or something. Possibly a witty bit of script related to your favourite TV show that isn’t the X Factor – the Apprentice.

See, I don’t find that interesting. I want to write about things that really matter enough to me to get a reaction out of my brain. You know, real subjects like farting, or buying turn-based 4x games on the cheap. None of your pop culture shit here, oh no.

But away from the facetiousness, it is getting to be a bit of a chore filling this out every day. The reason you’re getting this today is because I have a twat of a headache and couldn’t think of anything else to write, so I’ve fallen back on whining. Again.

41 left to go, then I never have to think of any topics ever again, and can retire into a life of luxury. Fattened, of course, by the massive advertising revenues this whole escapade has pulled in… what do you mean there are no ads here? And that nobody donated to my minimum-£1000 Paypal fund? Motherf…


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Sales: fun, and not difficult to understand. Unless you’re Impulse.

It is the time of year that has become quite exciting over the last few years. The chilly weather sets in, the long nights take over and the feeling just hits you. That’s right kids – it’s digital distribution outlet sales time!

I’ve found myself getting increasingly excited* about the approach of this time of year, as it’s when the big online outlets for video games start to slash their prices. Now, in real shops, for real things, this might mean 25% off here, a half price there. When it comes to invisible products, like video games you don’t physically get to own, the sales are a smidge better. Like regular 75% off better, or 80%, or 90% – that kind of thing. To the point  where it’s rude not to buy these things you don’t actually get to own and will probably never even download, never mind play.

Anyway, this leads onto the vague point I had. See, the sales are great – Steam has set the precedent and all others are trying to follow suit. What this means is a fuckload of cheapities. But there are some out there that just don’t get it. I’m not going to attack Games For Windows Live, as that’s like clubbing a seal cub with learning difficulties.

No, this revolves around my need to pick up a new copy of Galactic Civilizations 2**. Keeping an eye on Impulse – the digital distribution service run by the people who make the game – I was drawn today to their one-day sale which is of the game. “Great!” I think, “I can get it for a reasonable price and the money will go straight to the developer!”

Well that didn’t last long. Off I went to a more standard retailer, offering old-fashioned things you get sent through the post and can hold/throw/burn as you see fit.


*When I say “excited” I don’t mean bouncing-off-the-walls giddy, I just mean “looking forward to”. I may be a sad nerd weirdo, but I’m not that bad.


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An open letter to the Met

Dear Police,

I hope this letter reaches you well, and doesn’t end up at Sting’s house again by accident – that was an embarrassing mishap!

I am just writing to let you know that I am proud of you, and incredibly happy with what you are doing for our fine nation. I recently read in the Daily Express that some horrible hooligans were trying to burn down the Queen so they could put immigrants in her house (which is a nicely decorated house!). I do not know what Chew-ish Urn means, but it sounds like one of those pot-frenzies these tearaways have together underneath their hoodies during knife crime.

Anyway, I lost my train of brain-splattering there. I was congratulating you, so I shall continue: well done for treating these ruffians the way they deserve to be treated. Just because they face a future of incredibly limited access to one of the cornerstones of civilisation as we know it, that doesn’t mean they can put spray paint on a van! It’s a disgusting sign of the times, caused mainly through not enough respect for God, the Queen and country, and the way they all do a drug.

So it was with great pleasure I watched you intimidate this gang of youngsters. I heard somebody say a fair few there were just children, and that the protest was “peaceful” – whatever that means! – but I think he was just a member of the Loony Left and probably reads a the chin-stroker’s digest (that is my funny name that I give to the Guardian newspaper).

It is clear for any right-thinking member of British society to see that these louts were on the verge of something truly nasty. In fact, I’ve been told by another source – the Daily Mail – that some of them made remarks that could have been construed as positive about the EU! What a lark!

So, in summary: the Police. Thank you for threatening, intimidating, beating, bullying and generally taking away the civil liberties of everyone who has been a part of these protests recently. It’s good old-fashioned behaviour like that that stops us from devolving into something like France.


Duncan Tittybums


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Yet more proof Family Guy and its offspring need to die. Now.

I was, at first, going to simply remind the world of the most wonderful televisual advert ever made. It is, for those who do not know, this one:

Tell me this is anything other than spectacular, and you are wrong. Now while I was making my way through the related videos on Youtube, I stumbled across many parodies, remixes and even follow-up ads by Sammy himself. I can’t say the latter part of that filled me with much hope for the future of humanity, “oh yeah!”-ing as he was about ‘international groceries’, but that’s fine. He’s also opened a new store, which also has living rooms, bedrooms, dinettes. But that’s besides the point here.

For you see, in the trawl I stumbled across something sure to prove popular with a fair few people: a video from Family Guy. Now technically it’s from The Cleveland Show, but that’s just Family Guy for the third time, so I’m going to remain calling it Family Guy. I’m not about to go into my rant about why the show used to be great, but is now a painfully unfunny parody of its past glories – but it is. No, I’m going to link you the video right here and ask you to point out what’s wrong with it:

If your guess was “it’s not funny” then you’re on the right tracks. If your guess was “it’s not actually a parody, it’s just taking the advert verbatim and putting one of the Family Guy characters in it, thus trying to pass of something entirely not of the work of the writers as a successful parody. It seems woefully incapable of actually doing what a parody is meant to do, and probably with good reason – the subject matter is already pretty much parody-proof. If anything it smacks of an incredibly lazy and incredibly cynical attempt to shoehorn in more of the bullshit pop culture references that the Family Guy writing staff has increasingly relied on over the last ten years or so. It is not a joke, it adds absolutely nothing to the original and in fact shows the arrogant, bigshot TV show up for what it is doing (or not doing, as the case may be) – I mean, at least Sammy, the guy in the ad, came up with the rap himself. He didn’t just lift it wholesale from somewhere else, do it himself changing only one word and then claim he was being hilarious.” then you’d be right. Well done.


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Obligatory Gran Turismo 5 post

I’m not sure what it is about racing games of the simulatory fashion, but I find them utterly engrossing without actually being particularly enthralling. You may have seen on the grown-up news (CROW-N UP NEWS EGG EGG EGG) that Gran Turismo 5 has been released, and I am currently playing it for review.

I won’t go over some things I went a bit mental about earlier, instead I just want to talk about that one particular element that strikes me as weird. It’s a game about travelling at high speeds in a ton or two of metal, taking sharp corners (that you aren’t supposed to take at said high speeds) and generally making a nuisance of yourself. Yet I find it completely calming. There’s ebb and flow to the thing, and it washes over me like a warm cup of Ovaltine.

Except nicer, as I don’t like Ovaltine.

With other racers I find myself constantly having to concentrate, perched on the end of my seat and yelping when I lose my train of thought for just a second or two. Don’t get me wrong – I love that a lot of the time. But it’s so bizarrely relaxing to go back to the simmier driving games – Forza as well as GT – and find myself in something of a happy waking coma while playing them.

It also helps that I’m not really paying that much attention while taking on the long races, rather I’m being hypnotised. Then 30 minutes passes without me even noticing. Ah, games. They’re well good.

Anyway, back to playing for a bit.


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Hunting – I don’t get it

I like meat. Not in the biblical sense, but in the way that I like to feast on flesh. I am fairly certain that at some point in my life I will eat a human. And probably not even out of necessity, or any other justifiable reason – just because I want to. But, as I’ve mentioned before, I have a bit of a pesky conscience eating away at the back of my mind, telling me to at least try and be a bit nicer about the animals I choose to eat and take into account how they’re treated and blah de blah. Basically, I like animals and I like to eat animals.

That’s just a bit of background for what I actually want to talk about here, which is hunting. Now yesterday I Google image searched for “thrill of the hunt”, which obviously returned images of real hunts. I found myself not particularly sickened, but more slightly saddened and generally a bit perplexed about the whole thing.

I’m not about to whine and rant that people shouldn’t hunt – fair play, you do what you want. But there are things I find questionable, and there are things I find disagreeable. I dislike fox hunting less for the cruelty to the shitty little vermin and more because it’s an excuse for the kind of people I dislike without giving them a chance to get together and enjoy themselves. For this I will not stand.

But then there’s the more American style of hunting, which was what made up 90 per cent of the images I was gawking at yesterday. A man, alone in the woods, armed with nothing more than a knife, maybe a bow and his wits – Rambo, essentially – taking on a fierce, dangerous opponent is something I can respect. That bloke who had a fist fight with a bear and won, basically.

But when it comes to finding a bear, shooting it in the head with a large-calibre rifle/shotgun and posing next to the carcass as if you’ve just done something worthy – that’s where I get uncomfortable. When people kill things to kill them, that’s when I get uncomfortable. When people encourage their tiny children to wield massive handguns to take down giant boars, that’s when I get uncomfortable.

It’s an argument for video games being a good replacement, actually. There are some things you’d never be able to recreate on-screen, sure, but at least it would mean you’re not going into the wilderness just to shoot a large, innocent creature in the face.

As I said though, I’m not judging. I’m just airing my half-baked views.

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I do find strange things “thrilling”

Much as I whine about travelling on trains – no, don’t worry, I do, I’m not just exaggerating for hilarious effect – I do still find some elements of their involvement with my life quite nice. For every twat there is in a carriage, there’s… well, there’s another twat if we’re honest here. But then for every goit looking over your shoulder, there’s at least another goit looking over who appreciates what you’re watching (dude watching me watch Penn & Teller yesterday: well done for laughing at the sight gag).

For every massive delay, there’s a funny cow mooing at the train (okay, that only happened once). For every time you have to change somewhere like Rugby, there’s the chance to go for a refreshing station-poo. For every rail replacement bus there’s… the fact I don’t have cancer? That’s the best I can think of there.

But the best aspect of travelling by train a lot has to be the ticket hunting. If you’ve ever put some real effort into getting tickets as cheap as possible then you know what I’m on about, mainly because that’s exactly what I’m on about. There’s a real primal winning sensation when you manage to find a ticket – no matter how stupid a journey it is – for a low, low price.

They’re becoming all the more rare these days though, what with prices inflating massively because train people are greedy cunts, or something. But that just makes it all the better when I do find the ticket that’s actually Worth The Effort – changing at Rugby, for example. But I honestly doubt I’ll ever manage to find a Bournemouth to Manchester ticket for £12 ever again. That will be my crowning achievement – the one time the thrill of the hunt was on a par with the actual outcome.

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LITERALLY the worst thing in the world

There are great deal of things to get pished off about – things like how today I had a reserved seat on the train, but for some reason a woman had the exact same reservation as me. As a result of being polite, I ended up sat in another seat. As a result of the electronic reservation system above the seats being broken, I didn’t know the seat I was in was reserved for someone else. This meant at Birmingham I had to shift again and stand up for ages, as the train was full. That’s one of the worst things that’s ever happened in the world, obviously.

But there are worse things, like AIDS epidemics, starvation, the rich getting richer and the poor continuing to get shat on – things like that. But all of that – even the train stuff – pales in comparison to one thing. One thing that makes me want to die. One thing that makes me wish the world would just detonate right now. A thing so bad it makes me shudder, want to cry and evacuate my bowels all at the exact same moment – all while I’m being shown on live kids TV.

Seriously – the Match Of The Day intro really is that bad.

It’s one of those things that about three people – all with no understanding of how shite the finished product would clearly look – thought would be a good idea. They wrote down the idea with the most glee a person is capable of, probably claiming “it’ll blow the audience’s minds!” or that it would be “the future of televisual football coverage introductions!”

All of the people involved with the creation of this intro need to know they have done more damage to the world than the Pope’s anti-condom stance. To be fair, those who actually did the digital editing stuff could only do so much, but they’re still on board with the whole thing, and as such I hate them.

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