Don’t Beam Me Up Just Yet, Scotty!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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You will get what the title is all about later. Let’s just say for now I’ll still be buying my airplane tickets and enduring the rigors of airport security for a few years longer.

As for now it’s Fact Day so have a look at the current offerings.

Enjoy.

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did you know2

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In cold weather keeping your cell phone

as close to your body as you can,

or in the inside pocket of an insulated base layer

will help keep it warm and prolong battery life.

 warm cell phone case

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In the West women usually start shopping for baby things

as soon as they discover they’re pregnant

but in China a pregnant Chinese woman will avoid

getting a stroller before her baby is born because

according to Chinese tradition it’s considered

bad luck to have an empty stroller in the house

while you’re pregnant.

 stroller

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The world’s oldest-known formula for toothpaste

was created by the ancient Egyptians

who used crushed rock salt, mint, dried iris flowers,

and pepper and mixed them to create a cleaning powder.

Research suggests this ancient toothpaste was more

effective than formulas used as recently as a century ago,

although it did have the unfortunate side effect

of causing bleeding gums.

 toothpaste

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A scientific study has suggested that if you

are stressing over an important test or exam,

writing down your feelings on a piece of paper

before an exam will allow you to achieve higher scores.

 writing down your feelings on a piece of paper

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Contrary to many theories,

the tongue does not have specific receptor areas

for bitter, sour, salty, and sweet flavors.

In fact, there is a fifth taste (umami, for savory/meaty flavors)

and all zones of the tongue can sense all flavors.

 all zones of the tongue can sense all flavors

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After banning the Nobel Prize,

Adolf Hitler developed his own version

– the German National Prize for Art and Science.

Ferdinand Porsche was one of the awardees

for being the man behind the world’s first

hybrid car and for the Volkswagen Beetle.

 German National Prize for Art and Science

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In a statement he gave to the New York Times in 1909,

Nikola Tesla predicted that it would soon be possible

to transmit messages via personal devices.

Today, we have wireless communication devices

that we bring with us anywhere we go.

 Nikola Tesla

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A month after the USSR sent Sputnik 1 into space,

they sent Sputnik 2, which was the first spacecraft

to carry an animal (a dog named Laika) into space.

However, despite the Soviets initially claiming that

Laika had survived in orbit for a week,

decades later official Russian sources revealed

that Laika lived only a few hours

before dying from overheating.

Brave little doggie though.

 Laika

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During WWI “Hello Girls,” as American

soldiers called them, were American women

who served as telephone operators for

Pershing’s forces in Europe.

The women were fluent in French and English

and were specially trained by the American

Telephone and Telegraph Company.

In 1979, the U.S. Army finally gave war medals

and veteran benefits to the few Hello Girls who were still alive.

 WWI Hello Girls

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In its early days YouTube’s founders used

Craigslist to try to popularize the site

by offering $100 to attractive girls who would

post ten or more videos of themselves.

Unfortunately, they didn’t get a single response.

 craigslist logo

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The phrase ‘Don’t judge a book by its cover’

goes back to at least the mid-nineteenth century

as found in George Eliot’s ‘The Mill on the Floss’ (1860),

where Mr. Tulliver uses the phrase in discussing

Daniel Defoe’s ‘The History of the Devil’,

saying how it was beautifully bound.

Its general meaning today, of course, is that

we shouldn’t judge or make a decision about

someone or something based on a brief

impression or outward appearance.

Wise advice.

 Don’t judge a book by its cover

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Just as true champagne must hail from France,

tequila has Denomination of Origin,

meaning that it has to be produced in Mexico,

mainly in the western Mexican state of Jalisco.

The states of Guanajuato, Michoacan, Nayarit,

and Tamaulipas are also acceptable.

 taquila bottles

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Located in the city of Taipei in Taiwan, the

D.S. Music Restaurant has nothing to do with music at all.

In fact, it is a bizarre hospital-themed restaurant

where waitresses are all dressed as nurses,

tables are made from metal hospital beds,

drinks are served in IV bottles and

walls are decorated with X-ray scans.

 D.S. Music Restaurant Taiwan

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Remember the teleporter Star Trek?

Well, it’s no longer science fiction because now

matter can be dissolved into particles, transported

and reassembled at another location.

However, it won’t be available for use on humans

in the near future because at the moment,

whilst it is indeed possible to scan every molecule

in the human body and reassemble it in another area,

according to Quantum physics, scanning and

reassembling changes the entire object.

You can’t make an exact copy.

So don’t beam me up just yet, Scotty!

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No Excuse For A Bad Photo Nowadays!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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In the town where I went to school the local photography shop was the place to go when you needed a photo for a passport or driving license or whatever. The guy who owned the store invariably came out with the following line when he got you positioned and was ready to take the shot…

“Would you like a good photograph

…..or one that looks like you?”

It’s easy to be cynical and complain about new technologies. Although on the whole I embrace new technology, I have at times been highly critical about some aspects (as with recent short series about the awful auto-correct cell phone feature – check out the “Bloopers” section if you want to see them).

But new technology has on most occasions made life easier or more convenient. And at times a lot less expensive.

Photography is one area where there can be no doubt that for most people the advances made with digital photography is a big plus.

Just as with musical recordings there are still purists out there who use reel-to-reel tape and prefer the crackly authenticity of vinyl LP records, with photography there are some who prefer to develop and print their own photographs.

For my part, however, the days of running down to the local pharmacy with my 35mm film and then repeating the process the next day to get the prints, many of which weren’t worth the expense and bother, are over. And thank goodness for that!

Nowadays you can snap 100 photos, pick out the best 20 or so, use your personal computer software (even free stuff like Google’s Picasa) to crop and improve them and then print off either professionally or on your own home printer only the ones you really like (the ‘keepers’ we call them).

Of course, there’s always a downside. And the BIG downside to all this is that there really is no excuse nowadays for taking a bad photo – and printing it!

Unfortunately that message hasn’t reached a lot of people yet, as the following examples illustrate.

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bad photo 011

 

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bad photos 013

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bad_photo_007

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bad_photo_006

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bad_photo_005

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bad_photo_004

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bad photos 014

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bad_photo_001

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bad_photo_002

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bad_photo_003

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bad photos 008

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bad photos 009

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bad photo 012

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Fasab Talks Techno – Part One, “Hello there!”

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today I’m talking techo, well sort of.

As time moves on – and it’s moving on far too fast – more and more things tend to irritate me.

The stupidity and bureaucracy we have to endure is the thing that inspired this blog in the first place and that remains a huge thorn in my side. I have made many comments on that subject and given the opportunity will no doubt make many more.

But another thing that pisses me off more and more is almost the opposite of stupidity – it is people trying to be too damn smart.

Nowhere is this more noticeable than in the technology that we use today.

Now, I’m not a technophobe by any stretch of the imagination. I love my computers and the advent of the internet was one of the greatest things ever, as far as I was concerned. Indeed I have blogged in the past about my long love affair with computers  click here to read it.

Maybe it’s because of that long love affair, because I have been involved with computers for so many years, that what is happening now irritates me so much.

What I’m talking about is the fact that today’s personal computers and tablets and telephones and all the other periphery of techo gadgets try to do far too much for their owners. Everyone who has one of these machines is apparently a moron, or at least that’s how the manufacturers seem to treat us.

In the good old days you actually had to work at making your computer do things. Your telephone in those days made telephone calls and that was about it. And tablets were the things the doctor prescribed when you were feeling poorly.

To cut what could well turn into a very long list of current irritations into a manageable size, let me concentrate on just a few of the most horrible things that we now have to face.

In fact, rather than go on and on I’ll split this post over a few days.

Today it’s telephones.

Like I just said, I remember the days when phones were used to make phone calls – seemed logical enough to us at the time. Now they do all sorts of things. You can still phone people when you figure out how, but now you can also text, surf the internet, send and receive video messages and calls, play games, buy stuff – in fact almost everything you can do on your computer you can now do on a smart phone. And most of them have reasonable quality cameras too.

For a while those who could afford a cell phone were lumbered with a thing the size of a brick and it weighed almost as much too!

You can see one of those in the photo below (far left!). You can still get them, or rather a modern version if you want to draw a bit of attention to yourself – and there are always people who do.

evolution-phone

As the years went on the phones kept getting smaller and smaller. That was good for a while. They became light and pocket sized. But miniaturization became the trend, and cell phones got really really really small to the extent that unless you had the fingers of a five year old child instead of chubby man paws it was a struggle to find the right numbers to make a call and a nightmare to send a text.

Then, mainly because of the advance of wifi and 3G and 4G and so forth, cell phones started to get bigger again to the extent that they are nearly back to the size of that brick again, albeit a lot thinner and lighter. Glasses are the next step, with a heads up view just like on the helmet visors of those jet fighters you see in the movies. And sometime in the not too distant future you will just need a silicone chip embedded at the back of your ear-hole. Not sure I’ll go for that last one though.

That’s a potted history of the cell phone, but now for the really irritating part.

When texting really took off and became the most popular form of communication when using a cell phone, someone – they won’t tell me his name probably for his own safety – decided that we needed help writing a text. Not what I call a “speel chekkar” that is available on your computer – which would have been acceptable – but a much more sinister and annoying invention.

Guessed what it is yet?

Yes, it’s “auto-correct” or as it likes to call itself “anal cortex”.

I hate this thing with a passion. I disconnect it on every device I can because it doesn’t work!

Auto-correct has not the slightest idea what you are trying to say. It is unnecessary, frustrating, irritating and useless.

It has only one saving grace that I have found.

Sometimes it’s funny.

If you are not likely to be offended by strong language, have a look at some of the examples below and you’ll see exactly what I mean.

Enjoy.

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autocorrect001.

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autocorrect002.

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autocorrect003.

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autocorrect004.

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autocorrect005.

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autocorrect006.

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autocorrect007.

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autocorrect008.

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autocorrect010.

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Beware The Green Eyed Monster!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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They say that a picture is worth a thousand words.

Well here’s a blog post slightly over 6,000 words. Don’t worry, it won’t take you long to read it.

It’s about the behavior of several heads of state at the Mandela Memorial in South Africa, an event which itself was turned into a bit of a farce.

From sign language interpreters who didn’t know any sign language to politicians not having the sense to realize they were on a world stage and everyone was watching, it was all a bit pathetic really.  

But funny too!

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President Obama shares a joke with

Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt.

Michelle Obama obviously didn’t get it – or did she?

Obama and Helle share a joke - Michelle doesn't get it

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Now a bit of touchy-feely from Obama

who is obviously enjoying the encounter.

The look on Michelle’s face seems to indicate that

she is not too happy with the way things are going.

Obama and Helle touchy feely time

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Obama and Helle take a little ‘selfie’ photo with her cell phone,

as British Prime Minister David Cameron tries to form a threesome.

Michelle, looking even more pissed off glowers into the distance.

(Wonder if the NSA is bugging that phone?)

Obama and Helle selfie photo time

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The happy couple get closer and share another joke.

Michelle gets farther away,

and she still ain’t laughing!

South Africa Mandela Memorial Obama and Helle getting closer

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Obama gets up to say a few words,

assisted by the sign language interpreter for the deaf.

Yes, that’s him,

the interpreter who didn’t know any sign language at all.

You couldn’t make this up!

Obama with interpreter who can't interpret

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When he come back to sit down again,

Obama finds that the seating arrangements have changed.

Michelle is now between him and the lovely piece of Danish.

Suspecting he may have blundered Obama takes Michelle’s hand and kisses it.

Michelle gazes off into the distance.

She has a “it ain’t gonna be that easy to fix this one, buster” expression on her face.

Obama Michelle kissing hand

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With his new little friend isolated

Obama studiously looks in the other direction. 

Michelle still ain’t laughing!

Obama with new seating arramgement

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Absolute Power Does Corrupt – Always!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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You know, sometimes you just have to laugh at the stupidity and short-sightedness of politicians.

The latest idiot to hit the headlines is US House Representative Jim Sensenbrenner. You might remember him, he was the one who wrote the supposed anti-terror law now known as the Patriot Act.

Jim Sensenbrenner

Now he has asked the European Parliament for help in controlling the obviously completely out of control NSA who have decided this piece of ill thought out legislation gives them carte blanch permission to snoop into everybody’s business, friend and foe.

Apparently Congressman Sensenbrenner has belatedly seen the error of his ways and wants Europe to put pressure on the US to change its legislation to stop the spy agency’s mass communications data collecting activities.

Today Sensenbrenner says that the NSA has abused the trust placed in it by the American people. Powers that were designed to protect them, but powers that have been used to spy on them instead. And the Brits are at it too!

dink_cartoon_gchq_snoop_big

Big surprise Jim?

I think not!

Then there is the damage they have done to America’s standing throughout the world. The Merklegate scandal, where the German Chancellor’s cell phone was found to be bugged, is just one of many instances where America has treated its allies like enemies, creating suspicion and distrust where there used to be friendship and cooperation.

cartoon merkel

And the poor judgment continues, because Sensenbrenner’s solution to the problem he helped to create is not to get rid of this bad legislation, but instead to create even more bad legislation that purports to curtail the excesses of the former.

Won’t work Jimmy.

No point fitting a new lock on the stable door after the horse is already out and galloping roughshod over the privacy of the American people and their friends.

closing the stable door after the horse has bolted

All very well for Jim Sensenbrenner to say sorry now, but wasn’t it inevitable that the massive ill thought out powers handed to the spooks after 9-11 would be abused?

Absolute power does corrupt – always! That is why checks and balances are necessary, only they need to be put in place in time.

Obama-Franklin-security-privacy-quote

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For Sale: Replica Fisherman’s Knife (Made To Scale).

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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First pun day of August folks.

The months may change but pun day is forever, or until I run out of puns whichever comes first.

So here are today’s selection.

I hope you enjoy them.

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I’ve decided to take the day off today.

I’m just going to call it to.

day off cartoon

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I’m in a heavy metal band.

I play lead.

lead_pb_periodic_table_169

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I filled my car up with gasoline this morning.

Wish I hadn’t now, the seats are ruined.

gas fill

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Is nothing built in America any more?

I got a new TV the other day and on the box it said

‘BUILT IN ANTENNA’.

built in antenna

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My garden is only 36 inches wide.

More like a yard.

yard

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My grandfather is a Cold War veteran

He can’t afford to put the heating on.

grandpa

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It’s not hard getting to work in the snow,

you just need a bit of grit.

true grit

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My neighbor just showed me his new wind turbine.

I was blown away,

wind turbines

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Well the judge said that from now on

I can only see my children with supervision.

I said why, how far away will they be?

super-vision

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I dropped my cell phone in the bath yesterday.

I said to my wife, “My phone is finished”.

She said, “It might still work, have you tried ringing it?”

I said, “Yes, but not much water is coming out”.

cell-phone-dropped-in-water

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I just bought an alcoholic ginger beer.

He wasn’t pleased.

alcohol_cartoon

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Sometimes I enjoy my steak under cooked,

Of course, that’s rare.

barney-rubble-steak

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I recently quit my job as a butler at a stately home.

I refuse to be ordered around in that manor.

butler-cartoon

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In class today the teacher gave me a square piece of paper

and asked if I could turn it into an octagon.

“Sure,” I said. “I’ll have it done for next week, sir.”

“No, I need it now,” was the reply.

“Okay, I’ll have to cut a few corners though.”

octagon

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I was chatting to a couple of girls today.

I said, “Give me your numbers and we can go out for a drink sometime”.

One of the girls said, “Okay, give us two secs.”

I said, “No problem, that’s exactly what I had in mind.”

two girls

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I’ve invented a device called a ‘base-ball.’

I’m thinking of pitching it on Shark Tank.

shark tank

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I walked past some joggers in the park today.

They weren’t very fast.

joggers

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I was at the observatory the other day.

The astronomer said to me, “Look at this massive star!”

I replied, “Actually, that’s a cluster of stars, if it’s any constellation.”

observatory

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I went to the Natural History Museum and

saw the two bees that Noah took with him.

They were in the archives.

noah-ark-cartoon

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Now, for the final trick, I’m going to turn this

Grandfather clock to one hundredth of its original size…

Watch….

grandfather clocks

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Fifteen Fascinating Facts From Fasab’s Flipping Files

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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I seem to be running out of ‘F’ words for my titles to these. Sorry for the repetition but I’m trying to avoid using the obvious in case it might offend.

Nevertheless, it’s time for a few more strange facts. Curious things that you probably never knew or even though of before. After you read this, of course, you will know them, whether you care to ever think of them again is entirely up to you.

Enjoy.

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If you mouth the word “Colorful”

it looks like you are mouthing “I Love You”.

animated-gif-love-you .

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Astronauts have a patch of velcro inside their helmets

so they can scratch their nose

astronaut velcro .

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Your cell phone has more bacteria than a toilet seat

toilet phone .

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About 75 acres of pizza are eaten in the U.S. everyday.

large pizza .

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It takes more calories to eat a piece of celery

than the celery had in it to begin with.

celery .

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Cleopatra married two of her brothers.

cleopatra .

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A single cup of gasoline, when ignited,

has the same explosive power as five sticks of dynamite.

ignition .

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Keeping you car tuned up is a good way to save on gas.

A car that is tuned up is 9% more efficient on gas.

tune up .

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Acupuncture was first used as a medical treatment

in 2700 BC by Chinese Emperor Shen-Nung.

acupuncture cartoon .

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13% of Americans actually believe

that some parts of the moon are made of cheese.

moon cheese .

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A female ferret will die if it goes into heat and cannot find a mate.

ferret .

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In ancient Rome,

when a man gave sworn evidence in court

he would swear on his testicles,

hence the term testifying.

holding .

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John Wilkes Booth’s brother once saved the life of Abraham Lincoln’s son.

Lincoln and son .

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There are no clocks in Las Vegas gambling casinos.

Rolling-the-Dice-in-Craps .

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The word “lethologica” describes the state of

not being able to remember the word you want.

lethologica 

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Did you try mouthing the word “Colorful” in a mirror?

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