Say “I love you” in style

Nothing says “I love you” like one of these. Literally. You can turn any computer generated sound waves into highly fashionable jewelery at just the click of the button . Bracelets, necklaces and earings are just the tip of the sonic iceberg. There’s also an “installation art” option where you can wall mount the sound waves and have a specially installed stereo play it at just the push of the button.  John Cage’s 4’33” would be a particularly poignant piece of art and/or the ultimate avant garde arm guard.

A good analogy

I know Ben hates analogies. This will annoy him. But if Annabel Crabb is my Herald pin up girl then Peter Hartcher is a close second as far as his writing is concerned.

“Rudd has grown attached to his description of the crisis as a result of “extreme capitalism”. That’s akin to saying the Titanic sank because of “extreme sailing”. The US economy and financial markets collapsed not because of the doctrine of capitalism, any more than the Titanic sank because of the practice of international shipping. The cause of the calamity was bad policy, just as the cause of the Titanic’s fate was bad navigating.”

Both Rudd and Turnbull cop a tongue lashing in the piece. Well worth reading.

“Why does it matter what Rudd calls it? Because from the diagnosis comes the cure. The fault was not capitalism, extreme or lame. It was bad policy.

As for Malcolm Turnbull, he has made some sensible suggestions on how the Government should respond to the crisis, but the one he made this week is not one of them. Turnbull claims the Government must not allow a budget deficit. Already, Rudd has used half the projected budget surplus for this fiscal year as apackage to stimulate growth.”

Of mice, and monkeys?

Engadget has compiled a list of stupid gadgets that should be avoided at all costs. There seems to be a particular focus on mice.

Like this one:

It sure is dumb. It’s a red piggy mouse. Some of them are quite cool. I would buy them. But I’m not sure why, or why they were ever invented. Like the Mouse Scale… for those people wanting to keep track of how much their hand weighs?

Luckily it comes with a cover for when your hands are feeling a little fat…

The real winner, as far as I’m concerned, is the USB powered “monkey” hand warmers.

For those looking for a little monkey magic – there’s a matching footwarmer. At $46US for the set – plus postage. A great Christmas present. Shame I live in the tropics.


Keith Loutit is the man who produced those amazing tilt shift videos of the Sydney Harbour I posted a while ago. He’s at it again. This time making a demolition derby look like a game with Tonka trucks.

Bach off

This is the best work of the 2008 Walkley awards best headline winner Rob Mills. It’s good – but I think the real gem came from one of the other nominees. I’d like to know on what basis these were selected. The winners announcement says:

“Knowing what makes a good headline is instinctive and ethereal rather than formulaic, but Mills prefers to use humour to grab readers’ attention. These headlines, from politics to the arts, shimmer with lively puns and pop-culture references. They are layered, lithe and fresh.”

Here’s the complete list of nominees and their submissions:Headings
Rick FeneleyThe Sydney Morning Herald,
“The felonious monk and his trail of lies”
“Welcome to the CBD: all arteries, no pulse”
“Della in the freezer”

Rob MillsThe Sydney Morning Herald,
“Bach from the dead: fresh portrait of a decomposer”
“Yes, I did inhale: Liberal leader admits sniffing staffer’s chair”
“Dear me: Della penned Iguanas letter”

David WinterThe Monthly,
“It’s Bennelong time”
“The great pretender”
“From Mandarin to top banana”

My favourite by far is the last one. I even bought the magazine in question thanks to that stunning cover headline. I do like the Bach one though.

If life were a musical

It would be much easier to steer the plot with this little number. A shirt with its very own in built speaker. Just $40 US. It’s a limited release – and the speaker can be removed so that you can wash it. The shirt that is. Not the speaker. Here’s a demo video… just in case you’re not convinced.

Change we can believe in

The problem with campaigning on a definitive narrative – or theme – is that you’ll be stuck with it when you get into office. Like the Rudd government and the economic albatross around its neck – Obama is now stuck with this rhetoric of change. And is copping criticism for appointing people with Washington experience. His whole campaign message was predicated on getting rid of the influence of lobbyists. Not getting rid of everyone in Washington…

Here’s Obama’s take on the situation from the Huffington Post.

“So it would be surprising if I selected a Treasury Secretary who had had no connection with the last Democratic administration, because that would mean that the person had no experience in Washington whatsoever. And I suspect that you would be troubled and the American people would be troubled if I selected a Treasury Secretary or a chairman of the National Economic Council, at one of the most critical economic times in our history, who had no experience in government whatsoever. What we are going to do is combine experience with fresh thinking.”

K-Ruddy Year

A year on, K-Rudd hasn’t grown on me. He’s still a triumph of symbolism over substance. What has he done? Not much. Annabel Crabb, still my favourite political commentator, obtusely reviewed his year in office… complete with Shakespeare reference. I’m still in awe of her. She is brilliant.

And then, in a story on his dropping the d word – “defecit” in parliament yesterday – highlighted this little gem from the PM’s first post trip question time…

As he arrived for question Time, at 2pm, the Prime Minister scanned the Opposition front bench and performed a double-take when he espied the employment spokesman, Andrew Southcott, whose Movember moustache has survived a sickly infancy to become a luxuriant ornament to his upper lip. Noticing the PM’s surprise, Mr Southcott told him: “I grew it – while you were away.”

The comment was a palpable hit; even the row of disciplined countenances along the Government’s front bench betrayed the odd appreciative smirk.

Anyway, a year of Labor in power. Interest rates have plunged – which would be a good thing, if they hadn’t been raised first. But in isolation it’s quite a positive – shame about the rest of the economy – and the deficit… politically a bad move, given a budget surplus is generally understood by the population as being a marker of successful fiscal managment. I think a deficit is not necessarily a bad thing – provided it’s contained to spending on infrastructure. What’s the repo man going to do? Take away our roads and ports? The rest of the population is happy to borrow beyond its means to finance a lifestyle and to invest – why isn’t that thinking extended to the government? Anyway, Rudd will have to be prepared to die by a sword of his own making – given that he promised a surplus budget. The Coalition will no doubt continue hammering the fact that they paid off Labor’s debts and they do still have a reputation of economic management – conveniently the Global Economic Crisis really began to be noticed under Rudd’s watch, and there blame will be apportioned. The global economy is largely out of governmental control. I’m more interested in Rudd’s bad policy moves in emissions trading and other decisions that will ultimately cost jobs and make us less competitive – and the fact that he’s the most boring Prime Minister in the world with a massive reliance on cliche and cheap buzz phrases like “a bridge too far.”

In the beginning

Just over a week ago I posted a link to a Flickr set of endings from movies. It seems fitting then, that I direct you to this website dedicated to opening scenes. A while back, in my blogging hiatus, I read about this guy named Saul Bass – a famous title scene creator – who also designed a bunch of famous corporate logos. I can’t see any of his work on this particular site though – so he’s only relevant because he’s a kind of cool guy.

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Passionate Defense

Mel Gibson is in trouble. The screenwriter from his hit movie gorefest “The Passion of the Christ” is claiming he was underpaid. I haven’t seen the Passion. I have no intention of doing so. I don’t see how Gibson’s interpretation of the events of the crucifixion of Jesus could be any more compelling than the text.

The scriptwriter is seeking $10 million for the work. Pretty good money if you can get it – particularly since the original was pretty much there in the form of one of the world’s best selling and most popular books. Any monkey could have produced a screenplay from that source material. Who does this guy think he is?