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Sunday, 26 February 2012

Nuthatch and friends.

We took a trip out to Oxleas Woods today, seeing as its A. a nice day and B. our camera is fully charged so good for a photo opportunity.

Its a nice place, ideal for dog walkers (plenty of dogs there) and bird watching.  We saw a few things that were quite nice including a Robin, a few crows and a lot of Ring Necked Parakeets.  They seemed to have proliferated over the years and now can be found all over south London and not just in the suburbs either, they can be seen down by the railway in work and in most parks nowadays.  What you really want to know is about the nuthatches.

 It was on the way back to the car we saw it, while looking at a parakeet in a tree we noticed a small bird hacking at the trunk of a tree, but didn't recognise it as any of our local woodpeckers. Small and blue, we suddenly twigged that it was a Nuthatch.  It was a nice round up to our day and though we didn't get a shot of it, it was pretty cool to see.

Oh and if you are interested in a nice Kanji dictionary (and don't have JDICT as one of your search box options) then this isn't a bad alternative and also has some US centric info on Nuthatches.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Horrible answers to difficult questions part deux.

Hello everyone, I hope you're sitting comfortably then we'll begin.  Our previous question dealt with changing demographics and Stephen Lawrence, something I'm unwilling to revisit.  This is something I'm quite willing to revisit.  GOD and the universe.

Our horrible question this time is this.  If god is love then why does he act, more like a spouse abuser and bully rather then an all benevolent being.

We got a leaflet from some africans on the street, and reading through, it reminded me that there is just no god at all, or if if he does exist he is the biggest griefer going.  We'll quote extensively and if you can't see the similarity in statements then you  are not looking hard enough. 

It starts off (with me trolling in brackets.)

Dear Friend.

#Do you know god loves you in a personal way? (Creep)
#Have you experienced god's eternal salvation at the personal level? (No, pray tell what does that feel like)
#Have you recieved Jesus Christ (through the post) as your personal saviour?
#Have you recieved forgiveness from god for all the sins you have committed since you were born? (guilt trip)
#If Jesus comes today, will he gladly take you along with him to heaven? (no, but will a head shot kill this revenant Christ.)

These are very important questions.  They are perhaps the most important questions you will ever face. (why do you have proof of concept and don't quote scripture or say the Bible, I want physical proof heaven exists.) God loves you personally and knows you by name, as a distinct individual. In god's sight, you are a very important person.  Gods love for you is so great that he gave the greatest gift that he had especially for you.
This gift is embodied not in a thing nor in philosophy, but in the person of his son - the lord Jesus Christ.

So far so standard, Jesus dies and resurrects to kill all sin for those that believe in him, nothing we haven't heard a thousand times before.  There is limited evidence for christ ever existing, at least Muhammed Selected Ambient Works is a historical figure, all evidence of Jesus though is faked, or comes through the Gospels which were originally oral traditions hence their ambiguity.
 We'll continue with the original script.

The first thing you should know is that god is holy, righteous and loving. Man on the other hand, is sinful.  Man's sinfulness is revealed in many ways, E.G. in his doing what he ought not to do.  Most people tell lies.  Others are full of envy or are covetous, some steal small or big things, others gossip, some are proud and arrogant, some cheat.  Some read Porn (originally dirty books) Magazines, others are controlled by alcohol, many are controlled by the love of money, others are self centered and full of unbelief, others believe in and practice witchcraft; others carry talismans and other forms of medicines for self-protection.

Its not a sin to be proud of something you did, nor is it sinful to read, or watch porn (unless you're a kiddy fiddler of course) god has some major level control freakery when it comes to sex and sexuality.  It certainly is not a sin to be controlled by alcohol, alcoholism is not a curse from god, though it causes misery for many.
Carrying a lucky rabbits foot, evil eye charm, horseshoe or a cross around your neck will not send you to hell.
We'll continue:

The Bible says, All have sinned and come short of the glory of god. Even people have not sinned openly have sinned in their hearts.  According to the standard set by Jesus Christ, if you look at a girl or a boy, a woman or a man with lust in your eyes, you are already guilty of immorality with her or him in you heart, and if you hate someone, you have committed murder in your heart.  So sins that are committed in thoughts words and deeds are all serious before god.  There is no one on earth that has never sinned.  Some have sinned more than others, but because all are guilty before god.   That includes you, for the bible says,  If we say that we have not sinned we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.   Although man has tried to bridge this gap in many ways E.G. by prayer, by going to church and doing a lot of what he considers to be good things, the gap is not bridged,  In fact, God considers all the good deeds done by man in his own strength as sinful.

So there you go, if you don't do nothing majorly bad you'll go to hell.  Even if you are a good person, don't have fantasies or wish on those that upset you, you'll still be doomed cos god thinks your worthless unless you believe in his dead son. Christians will say that this is all worthwile in the end, forever in heaven with god, looking down on the rest of us burning in hell.

Do what I do, and I wont hurt you, believe in me and you will have all the glory, turn your back on me and I will make your life hell.  These are the words of the bully, picking on the weak, the different, and those who do not conform to the in group.  These in fact sound like emotional abuse.

I'll cherry pick the passages again and add something from the above link.  

All have sinned and come short of the glory of god. Even people have not sinned openly have sinned in their hearts

Emotional abuse is an environment wherein the abuser tries to exercise control over you. The abuser first gets to know your abilities, capacities, self-esteem and values. Then after that the abuser will attempt to erode your strengths and capitalize on your weaknesses.
Man on the other hand, is sinful.  Man's sinfulness is revealed in many ways, E.G. in his doing what he ought not to do, according to the standard set by Jesus Christ.

 The abusive partner strives to make you believe that you are a misfit

In fact, God considers all the good deeds done by man in his own strength as sinful.

The person perpetrating the abuse will coax you to believe you are always wrong and are of no value in the relationship

If we just keep believing that christ died for us, keep taking that red pill, it'll be alright.  Or we start to question ourselves, would we be better off without him, that nasty jealous old testament, spiritually kicking us down and we come back for more because we'll go to hell if we don't.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

They caught him raping a chocobo...

Sorry about the heading, but it looks like our old buddies at Square-Enix are doing a George Lucas with regards to FFXIII.  I had a great love of  Final Fantasy, but recently, I've played an instore demo of this and man does it suck.  We also had a mess about with a PSV (Eindhoven Ed) in game and its a nice bit of kit, its just that all the western games lined up for this look like total cock.  We'll wait for a new version of Persona 4 is localised (or there is custom firmware / sub £100 price point before we wade in with our review fists fully primed, so around 2020 then).

Before our feature presentation, a brief discussion of what we are doing.

We decided to take a trip uptown, for a general look around of stuff and see if there was any fun at all.  The short answer was weirdness seemed to dog us the whole trip.  First of all the train broke down at Greenwich, so we decided to hoof it via bus to the Elephant and Castle, somewhere I visited a lot when I was little (my dads side of the family is from Walworth / Bermondsey) and we actually did community college around that area when unemployed.  Its been 15 or so years since I had any reason to poke through that area. 

First up though we got saddled with a nutter on the bus, a black guy with a Hi Vis coat and a guitar.  He started to sing and managed to crack up most of the bus, his voice was somewhat like Butters from South Park, making it one of the most fucked things I've seen in my life.  We also noticed that there was an increasing amount of hall churches including one with a spanish signs out front which was unusual.  We got off at the Elephant and decided to poke around the shopping centre, which possibly could possibly be described as moribund.   The only big commercial place was a Smiths and it had to contend with a variety of smaller stall places selling all sorts of odd stuff.  They had a reasonable independant game place, and a shop that sold Colombian and Ecuadorian products, which leads me to believe that there is a sizable South American community there.  After a lot of searching we got the tube out and followed on.

The leisure casino has a new pinball in, AC/DC, so if you like to rawk then this isn't a bad table at all (maybe styled on last years Rolling Stones table).  But apart from that you want to know about Square Enix raping a chocobo. 

There was a demo station up in HMV Oxford Street, our first impressions are totally meh, even though its the sequel to the much maligned and linear FF13, this feels like a redux of FFX instead.  Our current presets were that everything was set to autobattle, and you had fuck all control over the actual characters instead.  They also dumped you weirdly in something that looked like a frozen version of Zanarkand from FFX, not good at all.   Added to their woes is the iconic Chocobo theme is now a death metal version (we don't like guitars and actively despise Crisis Cores Metal drum n bass theme) and it really does feel like Squenix are raping all our collective memories.

Sunday, 5 February 2012

What we gonna do right here is go back.

Way back, back into time.  But first a round up and some sad news. 

One of my favourite authours has died.  Alan F Alford was an alternative historian who wrote on themes of ancient egypt and the near east religion (Assyrians) as well as cosmogenic destruction as a metaphor for those myths.  I came across his obituary in this months Fortean Times, and was saddened by his passing, his books made a lot of sense and thanks to positive reviews in FT, I actually bought some of his later works through Amazon.  For a new age / alternative thinker he was a rare person, that, actually admitted that what he believed was wrong (largely his theories on Zechariah Sitchin, tenth planet and all that) and amended his theories.  It lost him a lot of support but gained him a lot of integrity.

Way back.

What would you do if you could go back in your lifetime and potentially break it by talking to yourself or deliver yourself a present.  I don't have a Delorean nor Michael J Fox to drive us but as a hypothetical question, I'd take my old video and TV back to my childhood somewhere around 1986 - 88 and tape stories without words from The Childrens Channel, if only to prove that some of those old eastern bloc cartoons actually existed instead of being mere fever dreams.  Finally capturing Henapippa on tape, as well as something I think was called Backyard, and one with the ginger haired kid with the chickens and of course something we called the seven kind alarm clocks (a cartoon involving clocks we loved clocks as a kid).  We'd also get a bit of Chas the rabbit too, chas was a white rabbit with purple hair operated by some old weirdo, we thought he was funny, simply for posterity. 

My next trip would be taking the shedload of crap cassette tapes I've amassed through work and send them back to my younger self around 1990 to 1992, with a note on top simply saying Tape Pirate radio over these.  We've got a lot of Nigerian tapes either talking about god or singing about god, and would tell my younger self, to copy them when you listen, cos a lot of them shows don't exist. 

My final trip would be to my Grandads house out in Hounslow, back then with planes going over my head and a look round his green house at all his plants and stuff.  He had mainly Fuchsias and Pelargoniums but from an old relative he had cacti including a large cereus and a nice clump of Faucaria in a 4 1/2 inch pot, bits and pieces of the collection exist in my cactus collection as well as bits and pieces owned by relatives in my mums side of the family.  I would love to go back and see us it when it was in its prime (he had Epiphyllums so it would well worth looking at too).   We'll leave you with a few photos to gawp at, some we think a hold over from my aunt and some of my stuff.

Part of my Aunt Marions Greenhouse,

Our conservatory, this Cleistocactus was my neighbours and is around 50 years old.