Sunday, September 23, 2007

Stop the presses

Reporters get a lot of weird press releases - stuff scribbled in crayons, made up of letters clipped from magazines, written in the margins of photocopied articles, and so on. The Internet has made this even more common, though it has taken a lot of the visual fun out of it, since even the craziest press release looks neatly typed now.

I don't know how I got on this guy's email list. He sent this, under the subject line "Bulletin," to about 100 people, mostly at news organizations, universities, and local governments, by the look of the addresses. He pretty much covers the English speaking world too. And by the look of the content, it's a darned good thing he is getting his message out far and wide.

Here is the full and unvarnished truth from, calling himself "The Society of Fundamental Biology / Laboratory of the Phisiological Model of Behavior"

Suicide bombers are severe maniacs, enemies of medicine, agents of devil,
enemies of Allah, unique and monotheistic god, so also god of medicine,
and not god of insanity. The problem is more and maximally serious:
the problem is medical. I suggest to inform habitants possibly
carriers of the risk.

War is pathological behavior; sane habitants don't make duels and don't
fight each other, respecting exact national and international rules: in any
conflict almost one combatant is mentally insane. This doesn't exclude that
shooting to the bank robbers by the police is a pathological conduct:
it would be more pathological not doing it, or depenalize robbing;
"enemy is mentally insane".

Communists are mentally insane or they are right and their
law is correct; nazists are mentally insane or they are "super doctors
against the enemies of mental hygiene"; Napoleon is mentally insane
or he is right and he act as "perfect doctor".

Phisiologycal behavior means absence of pathological behavior; biological
group self destructive activity is pathological behavior. The scale is
from zero to 1000 of pathologicity, zero means phisiology.
The committer of a pathological conduct or omission, is diseased by
definition. Example for detecting a pathological behavior: if everybody
would pass with red traffic light, there would be more deaths and wounded

The tribunal says that some paedophile is sane and has no mental illness or
disability, this means: physiological behavior, non pathological behavior.
Paedophilia is a clinically insane behavior, the committer has mental
illness in every case. Also crimes against the patrimony or with
economic motive are non physiological conducts.

Theoretical example:
"Egyptians kill homosexuals but children are not born homosexuals: egyptians
corrupt then kill sane children, using illegal and maniacal behaviors".
This is a useful example of something that, if medicine would not operate
well, could happen almost in few cases, matching a "predisposition and
activation" case: a predisposition like my arm has, to be broken by a crash.

Why slapping child isn't a crime and a mania? Which clinical problem,
methods of correction and control want to correct ? Methods of correction,
like slapping, menacing, insulting are initially illegal and maniacal
behaviors. They involve 80-90% of earth's population: there should be a
medical document deposited somewhere, that disposes the violation of the
general rule, for a medical reason. If that would be a problem it should
be involved in the pathogenesis of many morbose states.

Killing animals is a crime and a mania. Why eating animals isn't a
crime and a mania, as generally is ? Is there a medical document
deposited somewhere, that disposes the violation of the general
rule ? In every case it is a parasitic activity.

Siegmund Freud says that children has sexual attraction for parents,
and that mind is partitioned in three parts: ego, superego, es.
Does he lie not knowing to be lying ? Is psychoanalysis a fake ?

Saturday, September 22, 2007

I am such a nerd

All these marketing articles a few years ago said that the way to sell wine was to put animals on the label. So now, everything has a bird, a lion, a kangaroo, whatever.

Well, animals don't work for me. At least not so much. What seems to work for me is ... World War II airplanes. I have this thing for World War II airplanes. And my favorite of the bunch, just happens to be the P-40, often known as the Warhawk, though it went by several different similar names depending on the version. I don't know why I love it - it was a great big, slow, overly armored obsolete dinosaur before the war even started. But ever since I was a little kid, I have been fascinated by the P-40. It looks cool. And it has the unusual distinction of being the backbone of the Flying Tigers, who used this out-dated plane time and again to get the better of the Japanese flying the white hot new Zero, which by all rights should have slaughtered the old American planes (the trick, apparently, was to fly very high, wait for the Zeros to appear below, the use the huge weight of the P-40 to come screaming down out of the sky, blasting everything in your path. Then you hope like Hell you've done enough damage to slow the Zeros down, all the while relying on your great slabs of armor to keep you alive).

So what do I see on a beer store shelf this week? Warbird Pale Ale from some place in Indiana. I don't know anything about it. And I am usually not fond of a straight pale ale; I prefer big India Pales Ales. But it has a great big pretty picture of a P-40; the 8-year-old in me wouldn't let me leave without this beer (good thing they didn't card my Inner Child).

And guess what? It's good. Very good, even. Powerful without being overpowering. Flavorful, with a nice hoppy aroma, musky and floral. I might have bought some more sometime even without the really cool airplane picture.

Now, I gotta go to Indiana and check out Warbird Brewing. I might even be tempted to try some Thunderbolt Wheat,even though I don't like wheat beers. And I'd love to try the Mustang Golden Ale. Damn, these guys have my number.


Commenter Cub corrects my romantic, yet historically hazy, vision of the P-40s role in the war over China.

Cub, otherwise known as Dan Ford, writes:

Ah, but the Flying Tigers never met the Zero in combat. For the full story, see
Flying Tigers: Claire Chennault and His American Volunteers, 1941-1942, just published by HarperCollins.

That said, I'll keep an eye out for Warbird ale. Blue skies! -- Dan Ford

Which of course points up the danger of relying on comic books as your source of historical information. But it does nothing to diminish my prepubecent admiration for the sleek likes of the poor old P-40.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Thanks for asking!

I received a lovely personalized note today from a young lady who is either in Canada or the UK, depending on how one reads her email address. Sadly, my Spam filter intercepted her kindly email, but I was touched by her concern anyway and I thought she raised an interested question. Here is what she had to say:

"Hi sean Do women really care about penis size? The answer is yes yaman elker"

So to my new friend Yaman, wherever she may be, I must reply: I don't know. Is my penis size a common topic of discussion where you are? Perhaps there are places where this is the case. I certainly hope the women don't worry about it too much. I don't. But thanks for writing, Yaman. Do keep in touch.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Thank God it's only in small batches

Tried this last night and I was very disappointed, not least because it was an irrationally expensive bottle - almost $9 for a 24 oz. bottle. The result? Overly sweet. Not offensive, just out of balance.

Double IPA's
like this are hard to pull off under the best of circumstances. Try Dogfish Head's 60 minute, 90 minute, and 120 minute IPAs side by side and you'll see what I mean. The 60 minute is nicely balanced and drinkable, the 90 minute gets a little sweet and odd tasting, and the 120 minute is like drinking beer flavored cough syrup. Not a happy experience (the 120 minute is a whopping 20 percent alcohol by volume. Most beers are, say, 5 percent or thereabouts, most Double IPAs are around 9 percent, so this beer is WAY out there on a lot of levels).

But for some reason, I had higher hopes for this Breckenridge beer - I guess I made the classic mistake of equating cost with quality.

If you want a good Double IPA, try some of these: Weyerbacher's Double Simcoe, Stone's Ruination IPA, Avery's Maharaja, and Victory's Hop Wallop. All of them manage to walk that delicate Double IPA balance: High alcohol and intense hops without becoming unpleasantly sweet and heavy. I hear the Three Floyd's Dreadnaught is excellent, but I have never managed to get my hands of any. What I have tried of their stuff has been impressive.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

I just needed to share this

I'm not a particularly good speller. I have gotten much better in recent years through considerable effort but it is something I have struggled with since I first learned to write. Spell check is a nice feature that has saved me much heartache, but it only catches blatantly misspelled words. For example, "public" and "pubic" are both spelled correctly as far as the computer is concerned. The machine has no way of knowing that the person at the keyboard meant to write a front page story about a "poorly-attended public hearing," as I discovered to my sorrow one day early in my career.

Which brings me to today and a small triumph. While typing along in a story about a long interview with a locally-famous Chinese chef, I managed to type the word "chrysanthemum" without a pause and without resort to spell check.

I just thought you'd want to know.