Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Killer Vitamins

I've said before, I choose health studies like I choose my shoes. They've got to support what I wanted to do anyway, and cost me next to nothing.

So I'm delighted to report the latest study showing that vitamin supplements shorten life!

Now I can stay out of those damned health food shops where the staff always look so acned and emaciated that I'm hoping they didn't handle my £10 jar of echinacea (or some shit that some kook said would fix some ill I didn't know I had).

Monday, February 26, 2007

Taking things too far...

A translation too far...

A "pictorial translation" of The Bible in Lego has been published on the Internet. Although it's all very cute and funny, it takes itself quite seriously and (not surprisingly) strays into the kinds of inaccuracy that cause the things of God to fall into disrepute.

For example, Jephthah is described as killing his daughter when to give someone as a burnt offering, in Biblical culture, meant to be dedicated to service in the temple (Romans 12 speaks of living sacrifices, not dead ones). Also, Judges 11:40 goes on to say she was visited (King James says 'lamented') for four days each year. It's pretty hard to visit someone that's dead.

Samson gets a raw deal in the Lego Bible, apparently he's a mass murderer. I guess that saying is true after all, one man's freedom fighter is another man's mass murderer/terrorist.

The Lego Bible is political correctness gone mad...

Sunday, February 25, 2007


Why are Christians (especially) threatened by the possible existence of aliens?

Why can't there be life on other planets?

I've been recently reviewing such
astronomical details as The Great

Attractor and the Sloan Great Wall,
things that just baffle the mind for

their sheer size. If the known
universe (and The Great Attractor is

unknown, we can see its gravitational effect, how it is attracting our

galaxy at a phenomenal rate, but we have no idea what it is, while the
Sloan Great Wall is probably only a small portion of the actual wall),
but if the known universe was the size of the earth, pick up a grain of
sand and look at it. That's still larger than our entire galaxy! Let
alone our solar system or the Earth itself. We are a really, really,
really small part of this universe.

For those of you that are Christians, think Psalm 8:3-4

I think most people would agree with the definition of an alien being a
lifeform that does not originate from Earth. In that regard, the Bible
is full of aliens. Think angels, devil spirits, cherubim, seraphim, etc.

OK, sure, these are all classes of spirit beings, not physical beings.
But they're alive and they do not originate from the earth. Why does
life have to be limited to just the physical realm. That's all we can
investigate at the moment, but pause to remember, 100 years ago a
wireless connection would have been witchcraft, flying to the moon was
considered a flight of pure fantasy. Now days, no one blinks an eye at
these concepts.

Is it egotistical on our part to assume or to insist that we are the
sole intelligent inhabitants of this universe? Why couldn't God create
life in some other galaxy (there's certainly plenty of them) or even in
this one? It's His prerogative, not ours. Who are we to insist He
couldn't have done that?

Deuteronomy 29:29 says the secret things belong unto the Lord our God.
Perhaps the Bible is just silent on the subject and we've misread
silence as a declaration of exclusivity on mankind's part. Perhaps He's
taking the US nuclear warship policy, refusing to either confirm or deny.

Perhaps one day ET will return our long distance call... It would
certainly lead to some very interesting conversations and comparisons
between the development, culture, intellectual and religious paradigms
of two previously isolated worlds... Rather than feeling threated, I
think it would be fun. There would be a lot we could learn. Perhaps
we'll be surprised by how different "they" are. But, given that the laws
of science are universally applicable, perhaps we'll be even more
surprised by just how much we share in common. And in the meantime,
there's always Hollywood to stir the imagination :)

Thursday, February 22, 2007

SETI Found Something!

SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) is an organisation set up to search for off-world intelligence. SETI@home is a project where anyone can share their computer's spare time helping to process radio waves from the universe. You install a SETI screen-saver, and your home PC picks up some data from SETI, and analyses it for patterns that may indicate intelligence or communication.

Presumably, if some little green men are doing the same thing 35 light years away, they're watching M*A*S*H for the first time right now.

I love SETI@home because it allows me to mercilessly take the p*ss out of my work colleagues who installed the thing. As far as I'm concerned, there is no E.T. except for those caught on film during the making of Men In Black. So I'll laugh at these guys now. I'm gambling that if they do find some slimy seven-legged exo-brain critter around Alpha-Centauri, SETI fans will be too excited or freaked out to notice I've stopped laughing.

So imagine my surprise when I read that SETI@home has found something! Actually a guy running SETI@home found something even less likely than Borg on Betelgeuse - he found his wife's stolen laptop!

When the hot-fingered new 'owner' turned the laptop on, it contacted SETI giving clues to it's new location. The rightful owner figured it out and gave the cops what they needed to recover the laptop.

"I always knew that a geek would make a great husband," she said. "He always backed up all my data, but this topped it all... He's a genius - my hero."

Friday, February 16, 2007

Gandhi, Martin Luther King, John Lennon and Madonna

Madonna has said she "wants to be like Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and John Lennon".

I'm all for it... so long as she wears a nappy, gets a tan, then gets shot.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Science and Fashion

I've long felt that popular science is as subject to whim as any other fashion. Studies come and go - especially relating to health. Just pick the ones you like, and ignore the rest until they pass out of vogue.

Here's one for tea drinkers. A cuppa protects against heart disease and cancer!

And don't forget to finish up with an ale for long life!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Bible Quiz

Now, I don't mean to brag... (maybe I just copied this html certificate from Bel's site.)

You know the Bible 100%!

Wow! You are awesome! You are a true Biblical scholar, not just a hearer but a personal reader! The books, the characters, the events, the verses - you know it all! You are fantastic!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
Create MySpace Quizzes

But then, I am on holiday - and only doing fun things. And in truth, I'm definitely no scholar, I just believe the book.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Beautiful Singapore

This is not the first time my holiday has begun with a stopover in breathtakingly beautiful Singapore. This tiny, stunning country may be the greatest argument for socialism (which my every instinct detests) on the planet. The government rules all, even the unions - as our self-employed taxi driver explained with indignant mock disbelief. "I am treated like an untrusted employee - although I lease this franchise from the government union - paying them!" He receives nothing for his extra taxes but the privilege to drive a taxi through this suffocatingly over-regulated city-state.

"Look at that!" he exclaims pointing to the roadside warning, then the automatic meter on the dash registering a $2.50 charge for crossing an otherwise invisible electronic boundary. (Ken Livingstone would salivate.)

And the bossy government brooks little dissent. A 40% vote for the opposition yeilds only 2 opposition MPs from 80. (Check the stats with my taxi driver.)

Yet Singapore works. Landed at 7:15, through friendly and efficient immigration, tidy baggage claim, and in the taxi by 8:00 - slowed only by my delay at the ATM and kid's restroom stops. Please send someone from Heathrow to see how it is done!

There is an unadvertised racial divide in this city. The Chinese restaurant was filled with Chinese on the inside tables and outside under sun umbrellas. I ate well for two dollars something (£1), then bought more steamed rice, sweet and sour meat and veg for the family sleeping off jet lag at the hotel. The neighbouring halal restaurant full of Muslims diners may have been equally tasty. I felt no more inclined to enter than the local Chinese.

In the evening, past English football on shop window TVs, I took my book over the bridge for a stroll. I'd planned to read a chapter with a beer in the hot open nighttime air. Live music at the riverside Crazy Elephant drew me in. A rock and blues band made up of an Australian and some local musicians brought in the crowd. Each band member threw his heart into his own solo winning fulsome cheers from a rocking audience. The Crazy Elephant was waited entirely by Malay girls. Just as achingly beautiful as the "Singapore girl" of the national airline, but not so porcelain. Surely employment selection programmes in Singapore are not operated wholly on merit.

Then on to New Zealand.