January 19, 2011

And now . . . this - Jan. 19/11

A bizarre decision to ride an inflatable doll down a flood-swollen Yarra River in Australia blew up in a woman’s face yesterday when she lost her latex playmate in a rough patch.

The incident prompted a warning from police that blow-up sex toys are "not recognized flotation devices."

Police and a State Emergency Services crew were called to the rescue when the woman and a man, both 19, struck trouble at Warrandyte North about 4.30 p.m. Tuesday.

[Full Story]

Nothing to see here, folks, just another outing by the Australian Deliverance Re-Enactment Society.

January 14, 2011

Friday in the wild: January 14, 2011 - The triumphant return

Years ago, when I both blogged more and read more blogs, I used to do a Friday roundup of the most interesting posts I had found in the previous week. My hope is to revive the habit, starting this week, and covering my little corner of the blogosphere from the beginning of the new year onward.

One of my favourite Christian bloggers of past years, David Wayne, has decided to call it quits, more or less. Having recently suffered from cancer, his blog became a means of updating readers on his health status.

Still, though I sometimes wonder about the value of things I have blogged and deeply regret much of the time I have wasted online I am particularly grateful to so many of you who have read this and have encouraged me over the last few years. It probably goes without saying but I was devastated when I found out I had cancer two years ago. My family and church family was the greatest help in those days, but all of you who expressed encouragement and concern online were a great help, especially knowing that so many of you were praying for me. In fact, all of the comments here and on FB, along with many e-mails, were a huge boost for my family, you encouraged them as they tried to encourage me.

[Read Happy New Year, Time to Shut 'er Down]

Meanwhile, David's set up a new blog on Wordpress in case the thought strikes him to post something again.

I love war stories, and Fred Butler passed on a good one about how the Americans acquired its first Zero fighter and used it to devise tactics against Japanese airmen:

Koga’s Zero, rebuilt, was the first flyable Zero fighter acquired and tested in the United States. A scant two months after Bauman took the photo, the plane had been shipped 2,800 miles to North Island Naval Air Station in San Diego and repaired, and it was revealing profound military secrets in the air.

[Read Koga's Zero]

Frank Turk wrote an open letter to Donald Miller following an appearance on CNN. I give it a B+ for sarcasm. Having now torqued off both Miller and Derek Webb, Frank has resolved to write one letter for every week of the year.

As I said to Derek Webb last week, if more actual Christians spoke to CNN, they'd be improved for it. Thanks for your faithful witness, and for your renewed view of the Gospel. I was worried that, after your last 3-4 books, you had given up on the faith and were looking for something unreal and unfulfilling. I'm pleased to say I was wrong, and I ask your forgiveness for doubting you.

Unless I have misunderstood . . .

[Read Open Letter to Donald Miller]

Tim Challies spotted Marvin Olasky's review of the new 2010 NIV for World magazine. I think I like it better than him.

Fred Butler critiqued a Chick tract, "No Liars in Heaven," for employing a fallacious argument against modern Bible versions:

The deletion of the word “yet” [in John 7:8] makes Jesus to be a liar, because after he tells his brothers he is not going up to the feast, he goes up anyways. Oddly, no where in the entire tract is the KJV named as the one Bible that contains ALL of God’s Words. It is quite a subtle ploy on the part of Chick to avoid mentioning the KJV, or any other modern Bible translation.

[Read No Liars in Heaven]

Screw Loose Change posted that Gabrielle Giffords' would-be assassin was a 9/11 truther, thus lending further support to my theory that you can't just be one kind of crazy at a time. Overall, in fact, they also point out that the truthers have racked up a higher body count on U.S. soil over the last 9 years than al-Qaeda.

What exactly does the Globe and Mail mean by "un-held Liberal riding," anyway? No bias to see here, folks, move along.

Share and Enjoy. See you next week.

January 12, 2011

And now . . . this - Jan. 12/11

Another resounding triumph for government bureaucracy

A cross-border kerfuffle over a popular chocolate treat nearly cost a Winnipeg woman a $300 fine and saddled her with a bureaucratic headache.

Lind Bird was recently stopped at the U.S. border and selected for a random search of her vehicle. She was warned she could have faced a fine after the customs official found - and seized - her $2 Kinder Surprise egg as illegal contraband.

Bird learned U.S. authorities have banned the candy because they come with a plastic toy inside that could, if eaten, choke a small child.

[Full Story]

See, this is why the U.S. has never successfully invaded Canada, or even tried since 1812. Even our candy is booby-trapped!

(Since obviously my American readers have likely never seen this tasty menace to society: a Kinder Surprise is a hollow chocolate egg, a little larger than a chicken egg, consisting of an outer shell of dark chocolate and an inner layer of white chocolate. Concealed within the egg is a little plastic capsule, which contains a tiny plastic toy that you put together yourself. It's kind of like a party cracker that you can eat.)

But wait, there's more:

As trivial as the border seizure may seem, Bird said the U.S. government has sent her a seven-page letter asking her to formally authorize the destruction of her seized Kinder egg. . . .

The letter states if Bird wishes to contest the seizure, she'll have to pay $250 for it to be stored as the two sides wrangle over it.

Option 1: Waste precious time filling out huge form informing Americans that yes, indeed, they may destroy $2 contraband egg.

Option 2: Give government ridiculous storage fee not to destroy $2 egg.

Of course, simply buying a fresh egg is cheaper either way, and it's just so tasty.

January 05, 2011

This can't be good for the universe


David Tennant, the tenth Doctor Who, is to marry Georgia Moffett, the daughter of the fifth Doctor Who, Peter Davison.

[Full Story]

OK, here's the problem. According to the old Fifth Doctor serial Mawdryn Undead, meeting and touching a past or future version of yourself would "short out the time differential" and cause a big explosion. So you can only imagine the results of marrying the daughter of your previous incarnation, and having yourself as your father-in-law. It'll make those family holiday gatherings a bit awkward, to say the least. ("Would you pass the mashed potatoes, please, David?" "Sure, Peter, just let me get these huge lead gloves on.")

Perhaps the Blinovitch Limitation Effect can help?

Then again, maybe it is just a TV show. All the best in the future to the happy couple.

January 01, 2011

And so it begins . . .

Sigh. One day into the new year, and Ottawa's already chalked up its first possible homicide:

Ottawa police are investigating a suspicious death in New Edinburgh.

Paramedics were called to an address on Stanley Avenue after a man was discovered lying in the driveway. He had no vital signs, paramedics said.

[Full Story]

Of course, we're not alone: Toronto and Calgary have also already chalked up a chalk outline. But Ottawa? Never mind someone getting offed on the first day of the year, I think you can usually count the total annual homicides on your fingers.

Remember when you could go at least a week into January in Canada before someone got murdered?

My blogging New Year's resolutions for 2011

I'll give myself this credit: I am generally faithful in posting my annual "State of the Blog" on New Year's Day. Even if I'm generally unfaithful in carrying out my intentions.

This I do at least to remind myself and you Faithful Readers that I'm not dead, I'm not suffering a double amputation of my arms that prevents me from typing, and I haven't forgotten about either this blog or the dozens of others that I try to follow regularly.

In fact I haven't been as idle as it might appear. In addition to this blog, I started two new ones in an effort to stratify some of my pet subjects:

  • The Perpetual Newbie: Personal rants and raves about Linux and other tech I happen to use to try and get things done.
  • KJV-Only Fallacies: This is a new version of a site that used to be hosted on Geocities before it was folded, and I'm gradually reintroducing those essays along with some new material.

And of course Sacra Eloquia, my Bible study blog, is not moribund, all evidence to the contrary. I plan on finally finishing my study of Galatians by spring and then soon moving on to something else, this time in the Old Testament.

I've got a few minor layout changes planned for the Crusty Curmudgeon in the next little while that should keep a little more up-to-date on what I'm writing, and where.

I've complained before about losing interest in regular reading, but this year my recreational reading has finally improved after several slack years in which my free time was taken up with movies and podcasts rather than books. What I read does have a tendency to inform and inspire many of my other activities, so I take this as an encouraging sign for my personal productivity in 2011.

So here are my blogging resolutions for 2011:

  • Up my blogging rate considerably. Instead of once monthly (maybe), I intend to post at least something twice per week to this blog, at least once per week to the Perpetual Newbie and the KJV-Only Fallacies blog, and to complete two biblical books at Sacra Eloquia and have a third well under way by year's end.
  • On this blog, post something of theological value, as well as substance, at least once every two weeks.
  • Also on this blog, post something specifically pro-life at least once a month.
  • Link to more stuff other bloggers are writing. (This obviously means, read more stuff other bloggers are writng. Yay!) Revive my old "Friday in the Wild" series. Try to comment on someone else's blog daily.
  • Commit to my old goal of one recreational book per calendar week - Sunday to Saturday, starting tomorrow - and post a review of all of them, even if just a 250-word "lightning" review like I wanted to do last year (but, naturally, didn't).
  • Blog my way through at least one important theological or philosophical work this year (and maybe one of each in coming years? Let's see how the first one goes).
  • Do the usual, nominally annual revamp for September 4.
  • Whenever I catch myself thinking, "Gee, that would make a great blog post" or "Say, I really ought to be blogging more," actually do something about it instead of just feeling guilty.

Is this doable? Course it's doable, if I want to. And I intend to. And for those 20-odd people who still drop by here daily: Stick around, Faithful Reader. I hope that 2011 is a more productive year, blog-wise.

Happy New Year!

It is now officially 10 months, 10 days, 11 hours, and 11 minutes to 11/11/11 11:11.

That is all.