December 10, 2010
Forensics....your friend and mine.
January 08, 2009
Via: Rambling Gamer
January 05, 2009
I have no idea.
There are, according to the recently launched World Superhero Registry, more than 200 men and a few women who are willing to dress up as comic book heroes and patrol the urban streets in search of, if not super-villains, then pickpockets and bullies.
Civic mindedness is all well and good but something is wrong with this picture...
â€œThis is a more serious business than it looks,â€ said Citizen Prime, whose $4,000 (Â£2,700) costume disguises an Arizona businessman and father of a toddler who thinks his cape, mask and stun-gun are cool.
Prime patrols some of the most dangerous streets in Phoenix but, like most Reals, is reluctant to speak about the villains he has dispatched with a blow from his martial arts-honed forearm. He does admit helping a motorist change a flat tyre.
â€œKids love the costume, so I seek to keep them out of the gangs today rather than take them on tomorrow,â€ said Prime who, at 41, regards himself as on the mature wing of the Real community.
What is wrong you ask? OK fine let me spell it out...
$4000.00 for a costume?
In these tough economic times one who is trying to set a good example for the youth of today must be frugal.
All you need is a mask, some sort of costume...say a ninja suit with a logo, a stun gun, some twist-cuffs and maybe night vision goggles. You can get the basic kit for a hundred fifty bucks and look damned snazzy if you're friends with a cosplayer who is inclined to enable your wacky civic minded shenanigans.
Assuming you get decent body armor add 2-500 dollars and if you have decent first aid training a hunters first aid kit with trauma pads (in case you happen upon an injured person) is going to be around 60 or 70 dollars.
One should be able to put something pretty impressive for under a thousand bucks.
What, exactly, did 4 grand buy?
For those of you concerned about whether there is a costumed crimefighter deficit in your area, there is the World Superhero Registery.
Note that despite the Times articles implication that this is a strictly American thing, there seem to be several in the UK at least.
December 21, 2008
Obviously squirrels have adopted a unitary command structure.
December 04, 2008
They must be located in 2 days or they will miss their deadline. No.Really.
July 26, 2008
Now a deformed farm animal is not normally news but the picture was disturbing enough to make me shiver...thus it warrants discussion about this stories implications.
The way I see it there are 5 possibilities here...
1: It is a bizzare but random mutation, the snout and jaw, shortened enough to give the piglets face an almost human face and the Brickmuppet nightmares.
2: As above, but not quite as random, having been triggered by the appalling pollution levels in parts of China.
3: This was an in vitro fertilized pig and due to incompetence at a government facility this farmers sow was accidentally impregnated with one of those human animal hybrids that Leon Kass gets the vapors over. This is possibly part of a program to grow transplantable organs or to make Chinese pigs taste even more like pork.
4: Its a pod pig.... the Body Snatchers are in China. Head for the hills. Trust no one.
5: It's a pig thing...you wouldn't understand...but you should react as in #4.
Scenarios 1&2 can be safely dismissed in the interest of fearmongering and hysteria. #3 is disturbing in a Soylent Green / Clonus Horror sort of way but points (tangentially) to the distant possibility of catgirls being developmentally just around the corner. Scenarios 4&5 pretty much just suck and have no silver lining that I can see....
June 05, 2008
The Sasebo Slasher, referred to by authorities as "Girl A" and better known to many on the internet as Nevada-Tan has reportedly has had her umm... "freedom restrictions" lifted as of Sept.14th.
The girl, now 15, fatally stabbed a 12 year old classmate with a box cutter when she was 11.
Because it involved girls of such a young age, this story shocked Japan.
Because the girl was a gamer, a fan of the film Battle Royale, and frequented some of the more gory nooks and corners of the internet, the murder had a similar effect on public perceptions of fandom as the Myazaki killings of the late 80s.
As a testimony to the well adjusted psychology of these here interwebs, the Otaku connection in this sad tale catapulted the unnamed young girl into celebrity status, inspired morbid fan art like the uncredited piece to the right and massively boosted the sales of University of Nevada pullovers...I've tastelessly used this meme myself from time to time but it is a good day to reflect on the forgotten person in all this, Satomi Mitarai, whose life was cut short by the whole sad affair.
I am not a forgiving person when it comes to crimes particularly capital ones, but given her age and the better than even chance that this was actually a vicious catfight that became manslaughter, I hope that this girl can maintain her anonymity and lead something of a normal life.
(..and not stab anybody else.)
April 10, 2008
...an Elephant painting.
March 12, 2008
But Mark Styen does!
OK, this may be a fake, as Wonderduck points out via private communication, the sheriffs name is Mr. Whipple.
March 01, 2008
Medea Benjamin, one of the organizers of the code pink protests in Berkeley, knows who to call when she's threatened.
Send in the Marines!!
This tale of hypocritical harridanry comes to us via Chaotic Synaptic Activity who also brings us this inspiring tale from the other end of the ethics scale .
After completing two tours in Iraq, Sgt. Wayne Leyde won $1 million from a scratch-and-win lotto ticket on Tuesday.....
Leyde couldn't believe it when he scratched a winning ticket, but he still plans to return to Iraq.
"It was a commitment I made about three months ago. I'm going to stick to it," Leyde said about his decision.
February 14, 2008
No, really, it is an old trick. As Pulpjunkie pointed out when I sent him this story, it was mentioned by Houdini in his how-too book on crime.
December 17, 2007
November 04, 2007
I read the article discussed in this post and thought at first it HAD to be a parody. I read the article....and read it again....checked the URL. Nope it is a legit article....though "legit" may be too strong a word.
Come ON people....I mean LOOK AT THE FRICKING PHOTO!
(The actual caption reads: Though street crime is relatively low in Japan, quirky camouflage designs like this vending-machine dress are being offered to an increasingly anxious public to hide from would-be assailants.)
Golly willakers! I THOUGHT there were a lot of vending machines over there....I guess I was just not noticing the little tennis shoe shod feets poking from under their cunning disguises.
DAMNIT!! I suck as a ninja!
In all seriousness, this is really kind of alarming.
Bill Keller....put down the crack pipe and move away from the paper.
Actually, when I was in Japan in August, the main thing that people were concerned about crime-wise was a rash of motorcycle thefts.....and children riding double on bikes. One night I missed the last train out of Shibuya, and just wandered the streets of Tokyo for 6 hours overnight. I never felt the need for an ersatz vending machine.
(Though to be honest, I never really gave it any thought)
HT: Chizumatic...who also points out this article that proves that a story can be dumb, bizzare and silly, yet still be actual journalism.
October 14, 2007
This is an extreme example, but I encountered, both firsthand and with varying degrees of separation, similarly bizarre stories over the past 15 years.
I must say though that this story really is a perfect storm of crazy.
In my (admittedly limited experience) fandom in particular seems rife with this sort of thing.
The victims blog.
via Colleen Doran who has a good discussion in the comments.
October 13, 2007
DATELINE VATICAN CITY:
It now appears that most of the acusations against the Knights Templar were part of an elaborate scam perpetrated by a French King (Phillip the Fair) who owed them money (and later went on to persecute French Jews).
Fortunately the Vatican has gotten to the bottom of this scandal and cleared their names (of that charge at least).
It only took them....700 years.
(Via Instapundit, who points out that it does put the Duke Rape Case in perspective)
June 17, 2007
June 10, 2007
Ben Carpenter got the ride of a lifetime when his electric wheelchair became lodged in the grille of a semitrailer and was accidentally pushed down a highway for several miles at about 50 mph.
Update: It was a Mack truck....not a Mac truck. Steve Jobs is innocent
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