Some things I've learned....
(2) "Puff" - unimportant; insignificant; unworthy of study by engineering students; waste of time
(3) It's better to keep your mouth shut and let people think you're stupid than to open it and prove them right!
(4) Blockwork people and concrete people can never work on the same site... Apparently they don't like each other....
(5) It's official; I'm fantastic!
Saturday 29 September 2007
Also, I have this other video courtesy of Mr. Sykes, enjoy also!
Hayden's laugh is brilliant!
Namely are underperforming, pansey-faced, wasters of national teams. Most importantly the national Soccer and Rugby Teams. We have many people who do our nation justice in the world, like Padraig Harrington, Darren Clarke, Paul Mc Ginley....wait...they're all golf players. Does that mean the only sports personalities we can be proud of are golf players?!?!?!!?! It would seem so....
Anyway, to the issue at hand....
Some facts for you first regarding our national teams:
Currently ranked 32nd in the World FIFA rankings, we have finally overtaken Northern Ireland who are now in 36th. Our best position was 14th from the 2002 World Cup. Interestingly enough, we haven't qualified for a single European Championship since Euro '88 and failed to qualify for last years World Cup in Germany.
Currently ranked 6th in the World, one ahead of England and one behind France. Our best position was 3rd which we held this time last year after impressive wins over Austrailia and South Africa. Our best position in the World Cups has been the quarter finals. This squad of players is heralded as the most talented side we've ever had.
Now the reality.....
Our soccer team is so bad, and underperforming so much that words cannot describe both my frustration and disappointment from the previous two games. Given my recent experience at the paintball range, getting hit square in the love spuds by a paintball, I'd rather do that again than face the horrifying display we put out in international games. When one looks at our squad we see most players play for Premiership clubs, and a handful of Championship clubs. By right we should have a very high standard game, but sadly, we don't. The press builds the team up to the point where they believe (and hence convince the public) that we (Ireland) are one of the best in the world (like fuck me are!). There is some kindof illusion that Ireland is capable of beating teams like Germany and Czech Republic. No. We can't, they are better, always have been, always will be. The longer we keep on this path, the closer we become more like the British Media (yes, that will be a later GMG). The fact that we are ranked 32nd is no reflection on this teams standard. The actual group table does us more justice than it really should. We are crap, that's the bottom line. I don't aim all the blame solely on Steve Staunton's shoulders, though he does deserve some of it. When push comes to shove it's the players on the pitch that are at fault. Yes players like Kevin Doyle and Robbie Keane are great when the play in the Premiership, but that's because they are playing for high quality teams. The Irish International team doesn't come close.
Is there a solution? Unfortunately at the moment I can only answer "No". The problem is on the pitch, and only the players can redeem themselves. Let's face it, qualification for the Euro's is nigh impossible at this stage. All we needed from the Czech and Slovakia games was 4 points to give us a decent chance, and instead we return home with only 1. Steve Staunton isn't responsible for exactly how the players perform on the pitch, but he is responsible for choosing positions, and quite frankly playing Kelly as a left back when he's a right back and not playing Stephen Hunt instead of Kilbane is just asking for it.
The reality of the Rugby is almost as bad. At one stage, the Rugby squad was the pride of the country. 3rd in the world, Triple Crown titles back to back and for the first time ever ranked as favourites to win the Six Nations. Yes, we did quite well in the Six Nations, and lost out by the skin of our teeth to France at the end of the hunt, but nothing...and I mean NOTHING, could prepare us for the disaster that was the World Cup which followed.
The media had christened our group as "The Group of Death" and justifiably so, given that ourselves, France and Argentina would be battling it out for the top two spots, each country ranked 4th, 3rd and 6th in the World respectively at the time. Expectation was naturally high given our performance in the Six Nations...but oh my how wrong we were. Namibia...utter disaster. Yes we won the game, but far from convincingly. We were assured by the squad that there'd be no repeat come Georgia. Once again, disaster, so much so that we almost lost the game save for a last minute failed try by Namibia. The problem was grave from the beginning when Argentina beat France, meaning we then had to beat both of them to top the group.
Following the superb performances by France and Argentina against the Georgians and Namibians, the harsh reality of Ireland's lacklustre performance was clear. We should have just failed to turn up for the French game. We were so bad that night, that the only thing I can remember was going "*sigh*" every five minutes. So many mistakes, so much bad everything!
Now I realise that tomorrow is the Argentina game but we genuinely have no hope. Not only do we have to beat them, but we have to beat them by seven points AND score at least four tries!!! EVEN THEN we'll only finish second in the group meaning we'll have to face New Zealand in the quarters, and by God we should just pack our bags then. With the way they've fallen from grace it's too hard to even watch them anymore....
Why can we never win??
Thursday 27 September 2007
It looks identical to the current SIXAXIS but will boast a rumble feature identical to its predecessor - the Dualshock 2. It'll be released in Japan around November and the rest of the world sometime in early 2008. Many games in development such as Metal Gear Solid 4 and Devil May Cry 4 are already being programmed with the Dualshock 3 in mind (this would explain why the release date of MGS4 has been put back, and hopefully will be incorporated into GTA4 aswell!!). Current PS3 titles will be made rumble-friendly via the Playstation Network. No price has been confirmed yet, but an educated guess would put it at around €60-€70 if you ask me.
All I can say is.... Thank Bloody Christ!! It's about time!!
Saturday 22 September 2007
Where to begin???? The return of EVA from MGS3 who now calls herself Big Mama, details about the New FOXHOUND, the return of Johnny Sasaki, Olga's daughter, the FROGS unit, Metal Gear Ray piloted by Liquid Ocelot VS Metal Gear REX piloted by Snake.....I mean...just watch it...please!!!
I cannot WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Friday 21 September 2007
So, if you would please, pick out the top 3 topics you would most like me to get gear grinded over from the following list:
The Leaving Cert
The Irish Language
A Particular Person or Celebrity (Please Specify)
A Particular Aspect of Our Culture (Again, specify)
The Opposition Parties
Or in fact any one thing you'd like me to have a go at.
Hell, if you want I'll write a Grinds My Gears just about YOU!!! You saw how well I wrote the one about myself.
Just because I look like Herman Munster's stunt double, doesn't mean I can't appreciate fine art!!!
Thursday 20 September 2007
I don't know why but this is actually one of my favourites. It's hard to explain, but there just seems to be a genuine frustration coming out of James in this one.
I particularly like the opening joke! So you will actually get it, I'll direct you to James' video review of Ninja Turtles 3 here:
It will explain it all for you. I really suggest you watch this first (it is part 2 of the whole review, but the actual reference to THIS joke is in part 2!)
Were you expecting ehhhh NINJA TURTLES?!?!?!....Funny
Tuesday 18 September 2007
Völkerball's set list comprises of all their best hits, literally. Normally on any live album there tends to be one or two songs that don't quite make the mark, but Rammstein's unique style and furious live performance fuels their studio songs into the echelons of heavy metal heaven.
The package itself has DVD live performances and a CD with the track list below:
2. Reise, Reise (Arise, Arise)
3. Links 2 3 4 (Left 2, 3, 4)
4. Keine Lust (Don't Feel Like It)
5. Feuer frei! (Fire at Will! or Open Fire!)
6. Asche zu Asche (Ashes to Ashes)
7. Morgenstern (Morningstar)
8. Mein Teil (My Part)
9. Los (-Less)
10. Du Riechst so Gut (You Smell so Nice)
11. Benzin (Petrol)
12. Du Hast (You Have)
13. Sehnsucht (Longing)
14. Amerika (America)
15. Sonne (Sun)
16. Ich will (I want)
This was the first live album that I listened to right throughout without skipping a song (as I said earlier all their hits are here) and conveniently the running time is approximately the amount of time it takes me to get to UCD each morning!
Rather than waste time trying to explain why I enjoy it so much, I'll let you take a gander at the vids below!
Now if only they had Mann Gegan Mann.....
Not too long ago, I wrote a blog entitled "Time to Let It Go". At the time of writing that, none of the recent events in the Madeleine McCann case were in circulation, but aspects of the case were slowly beginning to wear by abrasion my gears. Almost everyone in the entire world is aware of how this case is panning out (except Americans because they believe the only news in the world is their own, and people in Antartica) and now aspects of this case are starting to get to me.
Those of you who are familiar with my GMG blogs know that I often take a humourous approach to these things, so this one might seem a little different because of the serious matter involved.
I started considering to write this when I learned that the McCanns were initially proposing to pay for their legal fees out of the "Find Madeleine" fund they had started. This in its own right is just out and out wrong, and the suggestion of such a thing pisses me off. People donated that money so they could fund efforts to find their daughter, not so they could clear their names - a job which seems to be becoming a very difficult task indeed - and the money was donated at a time when the whole world deemed the McCanns to be a 100% completely innocent element of the case. We all know that things have changed now. Some time after it was revealed that they wouldn't be dipping into the fund to pay for legal costs. Whether this was so they could redeem themselves somewhat or on advice from their lawyers, no one knows.
As most of you know, this fund has been in existence for some time, and the money in the deposit has been sitting there for a long time aswell. Isn't is coincidental that they announce plans to spend £80,000 (out of 1.2million) on a new advertising campaign, days after they tried to use the money for legal fees? What I don't understand is the necessity of putting up these posters. The whole world knows what the poor girl looks like. Posters won't bring her back.
Another thing about this case which annoys me is the extended family. How many times have we seen/heard family members on Sky News attempting to clear Gerry and Kates names by telling us all that the Portuguese Police are incompetent? There are far more clever ways to help make someone look innocent than bitching about the Police. What's worse is that early in the case Gerry was quoted as saying "We (our family) have full faith in the Police", is that the case now? If they're adamant to help clear their names, why not cooperate and give them the laptop and cuddle toy. Also, any innocent man who says: "Find the body and prove we killed her" is no innocent man.
When visiting Sky News.com, I came across an article in relation to the case which I hadn't been aware of. The McCanns want the media to go away! Now excuse me if I'm wrong, but I do remember that same family using every possible media available for the previous 120 days before they were named suspects. And now they want them to leave them alone. You can't just switch the media on and off to suit your needs! How can they expect the media to go away when they do nothing but criticise the Police, and have family members and friends on the TV proclaiming their innoncence? Honestly, they'd be better not saying anything.
To make matters worse, celebrities are now on the "Clear the McCanns" bandwagon. Richard Branson is donating £70,000 to pay their legal fees. What the hell has he got to do with any of this? And he's asking other celebs to join in!!! Why should the McCann case supercede all the other thousands of missing children in the world? The McCanns got themselves to this spot in the first place and they should get themselves out. How can the public be expected to still have sympathy for them when they keep changing their stories and so much potential evidence is now turning the case against them?
The fact that they left 3 kids under the age of 4, alone in an unlocked apartment is dodgy enough. Staff at the restaurant said they didn't check on the kids every 20mins like they said they did. All this stuff about sedatives and sniffer dogs, body fluids and diary entries, it's all turning the tide against the McCanns, and I'm somewhat encouraged by the Sky News Forums that there's a multitude of people who express the same opinion as I do.
We need closure on this issue fast, because this case will never go away otherwise. The public has a right to know what exactly happened that night on May the 3rd after all the stories we've been exposed to. What parents deem it necessary to visit the Pope, or travel to other countries to promote their missing child when the time would be better spent physically searching themselves, knocking on doors, asking people in the area etc. The issue has been raised countless times as to why we've never once seen either of them shed a tear, what with all the exposure we've seen. We all know at this stage that this family can never return to normal life, with or without Madeleine. Depending on what the Portuguese Judge makes of it, a charge may or may not be made, and then we'll never know what part - if any - the parents had to play in their daughter's disappearance.
Am I right in thinking they're Guilty Until Proven Innocent?
-Note, I'm not saying innocent until proven guilty.
Monday 17 September 2007
Looking strictly at my timetable, I can already see that Thursday will be exclusively my absolute favourite day, starting at 11.00am (which means I get a lie on till about 8.30) and finishing at 1.00pm (which means I get home early before rush hours). In second place then we have Monday and Wednesday sharing the slot. Both days I would normally finish at 12.00pm and 1.00pm respectively, starting at 9.00am both days, but on 3/12 weeks in the year, I will have late finishes these days due to laboratories. Next comes Friday, albeit that its 9.00-3.00, I only have lectures and the 18 bus leaves at 3.00 which means I have easy access getting to Walkinstown for Johns Ambulance. And then in last place comes Tuesday. While it is an 11.00-4.00 job, the history of architecture for two hours in the afternoon pretty much kills the day.
History of Architecture III
This picked up right where it left off last semester. Shoot me please. It's no so much the lecturer, he's quite interesting himself, but the content is just *ugh*. It's as though the staff made no real attempt to make the module interesting or exciting, other modules have practicals and field trips to vary the course but this is just the same thing week in week out, sit down, listen, take notes, learn notes. What's worse? We've History of Architecture IV next year!!!
Maths for Engineers IV
We've the same guy that we had for Maths 2 and 3 in first year. The content is pretty heavy, continuing on from Maths 3 but at this stage we've come to expect it. His methods are good and thanks to History of Architecture it's not the worst one out there.
Mechanics of Fluids I
This is probably shaking up to be the toughest module this semester. The content of the labs looks to be pretty tricky (that's what I'm waiting for now as I write this!) and the lectures look set to take up stuff we learned this time last year to a whole other level. Thankfully the lecturer seems quite capable, leaving gaps in the notes (which are excellent so far) for us to fill in and help keep us paying attention.
Environmental Engineering Fundamentals
I took this as an elective and the course is being given by my in-campus mentor Bill Magette. At the moment we're just dealing with ethics, and the processes involved in the Engineering Design phases, though with interesting reading assignments, in-lecture notes like the class above and an interesting lecturer in Bill himself, this looks to be going in the right direction.
It's somewhat of a relief after last year that we're finally starting to do stuff specific to Structural and Civil engineering (which as you may have guessed are the students attending this module). Realisitically the course seems a little dull at the moment, as quite frankly the intricate details of concrete manufacturing don't quite tickle my pickle, but the content on soil mechanics aswell as a look back at metals which we covered in Material Science last year suggests that this module won't be too bad.
I knew from lecture 1 that this would be my favourite module. It is what it says it is. Here we're looking at everything that goes into the design process aswell as identifying and categorizing building types and components, not to mention in depth analysis of the construction of the building components themselves and absolutely anything and everything that goes into buildings is being discussed. With an exciting lecturer who involves the class and encourages a weekly learning programme in the online assignment quizes, this one is certainly looking up.
Back to you in the studio!
I talked about this idea briefly with my associate (who shall remain nameless, but let's say this person also has a blog here which I may or may not have linked to the left and may or may not be a certain Head something in a certain Assumption something in a certain school in a certain area of Dublin 12, that much is certain) and it does produce a very definitie limitless supply of potential outcomes.
The issue of alternate realities has been raised countless times on TV and the cinema, most notably Jet Li's "One" and my usual favourite "Red Dwarf". The scientific theory if you can use that word, suggests that alternate realities exist over time and reality itself (the 4th and 5th dimensions respectively). In "Red Dwarf", the idea behind the number of potential realities is proportional to the number of decisions we make. That alone gives you an idea as to just why there is a limitless potential number of permutations. Given that the number of decisions we make a day can be in the thousands, the number over a week, let alone a year or a lifetime is phenomenal.
To make the issue easier to comprehend and more clearer, we can take it that significant alternate realities are derived from key decisions we make. Using Red Dwarf as an example; the alternate reality plot surrounds Arnold Rimmer and Ace Rimmer. Arnold is the main character that people are associated with, Ace on the other hand is introduced to us in Season 4 as part of an alternate reality. Normal Rimmer is anally retented, power mad, selfish and somewhat of a loser. Ace on the other hand is galactic hero, loved by all, completely selfless and an outright great guy (as people who meet him exclaim "What a guy!"). Their difference in personality is explained in a decision that was made in their childhood (and actually the opening scene of the particular episode), where our Arnold Rimmer was skipped ahead in class (and ultimately was behind everyone else and suffered resulting in the pitiful character we meet in the show), Ace stayed back a year, and as a result was the oldest and best in the class, meaning his personality and self confidence never suffered. In "One", Jet Li's character tries to kill all his alterate selves in order to become stronger, so that the life force which sustains his person over all the realities will instead be focused into his "One" body and ultimately become stronger than anyone else.
Rather than try to elaborate on this any further, I'm going to show you a list of potential differences that could have occured in my life, had I made different decisions or what may have been different say....had I been a girl!:
- Had I been a girl, I'd have been named Rebecca and obviously this single thing results in an enormous amount of other possibilities, so I'll let you figure them out for yourself.
- Had I chosen to go to school at 5 instead of 4, I may have had a different education and ultimately turned out different personality wise
- Whether I'd chosen to do Spanish instead of French. Would I then have a different group of friends or lost out on all the great moments from French class
- Business or Tech Graphics? Would I know be studying economics in college instead of engineering?
- Transition Year - different class, different teachers, different Leaving Cert exam, all could have resulted in me being in a very different situation than I'm in now
- What would I be doing on Fridays now had I actually decided to leave the SJA when I was considering it?
- We could go into a multitude of situations arising from "What if you had fancied her instead of her?" and all that so you can think about those ones yourselves.....
And so on...
As I said at the beginning the list is virtually endless. Just think about what things might have happened differently had you gotten up earlier and had your breakfast or actually took the Metro from the guy at the corner of the street. What if you wanted to tell someone how you feel about them but didn't because you were scared? What if you had've placed a bet on Man Utd last year to win the league, even though the odds were stacked against them in Chelsea's favour?
Any one question spawns an array of follow-ups, all within the "What if?" category.
Thursday 13 September 2007
Neither is this.....
Nor is this The Edge.....
If you actually believed that any of the above was The Edge I am talking about, then you truly are blinded, as The Edge has no physical form. Allow me to enlighten your mind.
The Edge can focus your mental capacity and competence to a level beyond anything you will ever have experienced. Imagine being so focused that you can hear a pin drop, smell things before they happen, pick out the defects in a material by the mere touch of your fingers, taste how fresh the contents are of your sandwich and make an exact guess of the cup-size of the girl sitting 10 metres away from you with a mere glance of your eyes. The Edge raises your awareness and mental processing rate to a level only dreamt by Star Trek geeks trying to be like Brent Spiner.
With the power of The Edge, anything can happen (see "The Edgechievements" below).
"But how does one gain the power of The Edge??" I hear you scream. Well children, that is what I am about to share with you. The Edge cannot envelope your mind at will. Regardless of how many times you achieve The Edge, attaining that mental phase again and again becomes no easier. The Edge can only be attained as a need, never as a desire. Whether it is an exam, a sports game or an epic bout of Rock-Paper-Scissors, you can use The Edge so long as you see it as a need.
The first stage in reaching The Edge is to close your mind around you. Preferably do this in a quiet room, but as I've found it works just as well when the room is full of people ("Shut up, Lopes!!" always works for me.) You then need to focus on the goal in mind, be it getting paper when your opponent goes for rock or whatever. Focus on that image and picture it floating in zero gravity, effortlessly in your head. At this stage you should be able to hear nothing but the "woosh woosh" sound of the image floating and rotating in your head. It is essential that your eyes are closed and both your hands double-up covering your eyes. Your head must be facing downwards with your elbows resting on your knees.
When you have achieved this mental state, it is time to reach out for The Edge. Focus on the object, then, imagine that object being sliced by a single swipe of Katana or Masamune. If you can imagine one clean swipe then you are in The Edge, The Edge and you are one, they are you, you are they, roses are red and violets are blue. Watch the two clean cut pieces of the object falling....falling...until BAM! a second swipe cuts them in fours.
Now you have The Edge. Carefully re-open your mind to the world around you, let the murmurs of those around you wondering what the hell you are doing flood your ears. Your focus will be unmatched, there is nothing you can't do.
Ever hear of Adam Copeland? No? Perhaps you've heard of a wrestler named Edge. That's him. He discovered The Edge and in honour, he named his in-ring name after it. Now he has a record of more titles than you or I have fingers, toes and thumbs.
David Evans? There's a picture of him above. He discovered The Edge when trying to master guitar, now he's one of the most famous guitarists in the world......
Claude Lee Edge is a former American Baseball player. His real name is Claude Lee, but after discovering The Edge he decided to add it to the end of his name.
I myself have used The Edge on several occasions:
- When I got 108% in a Chemistry exam
- Winning Cork and the Sylvestre O'Farrell in SJA
- When I was training my under-12's football team, they went the whole season unbeaten, in fact, they didn't even draw a game.
- I won a noughts and crosses competition by simply allowing The Edge to guide my hand.
- After several years of simply going by "Damo", it was decided that in dedication to The Edge, I would adopt the "The" bit of The Edge and incorporate it into my name, hence I am now known as "The Damo"
Have you got The Edge?
Monday 10 September 2007
...And Something For All
1. Download MSN or any other instant messaging program. In fact, anyone and everyone who has a PC should have MSN, full stop.
2. Have (or used to have) an account on the following sites:
- Rate My Teachers (.ie)
- Google and/or any of its services
3. Have used Bored.com
4. Used a blog/image storage website
5. Visited ebaumsworld.com
6. Must know what an Explosm comic is
7. Must have watched/heard of a machinima program (eg. Red Vs Blue)
8. Know what a GMG is
9. Download Google Earth
10. Must have illegally downloaded music/movies
11. Have a reasonable knowledge of quick-type lingo for MSN.
12. Visit any of the following: Sky News, RTE.ie, BBC
13. Have any or all of the following programs installed on your PC:
- An illegal copy of Microsoft Office
- An illegal copy of Photoshop
- Recording and/or Movie Making software
14. Join Bebo, then leave, then come back.
15. Must know about web browsers other than Internet Explorer.
16. Must be aware of the top online gaming websites such as mousebreaker.com
17. Know what "vujf" means
18. Visit alluc.org
19. Have a webcam....but never actually use it.
20. Stay up chatting on MSN into the early hours of the morning
21. Contract a virus, then kill it
22. Find something hilarious/disgusting, then email it to all your friends
23. Get someone on Gmail to send you an invite
24. Take part in an online quiz/poll
...And Something for Guys
1. Regularly (or have attempted to) watch pornographic videos/images
2. Read the "Perfect Woman" article on Uncyclopedia
3. Watch or at the very least know about the Paris Hilton tapes
4. Enter any forum that is discussing whether the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 or Nintendo Wii is the best
5. Always download illegal music/videos
6. Know what (. )( .) means
7. Always, always help out a dude in trouble on any website when outnumbered by members of the opposite sex.
8. Know what a MOD means, not the forum kind.
9. Have discussed the possibility of making an online comic or machinima channel
10. Visit screwattack.com
11. Visit totallycrap.com
12. Be able to quick reference to any gaming websites such as IGN.
13. Never go to gurl.com
14. Use smilies only where absolutely appropriate
15. Leap on any mistake which extracts childish and/or sexual meaning from MSN conversations
16. Finish all conversations and comments with XXX when talking to women. Never men.
...And Something for Girls
1. Visit gurl.com
2. Make sure to join in when numerous other women are ganging up on a helpless and pitiful male pig
3. Block any other bitches who piss you off from communicating with you
4. Prove by any means necessary through the web that Men are more evil than Women (see earlier post)
5. Never ever watch pornographic material
6. Upload pics of you and your friends on a day/night out
7. If keeping a blog, be able to write articles that are too sophisticated for men like me.
8. Be able to quickly out smart any guy you are instant messaging
9. Be able to link guys to something that you will understand, but they will be too stupid to even know what the website is about
10. Use smilies anywhere and everywhere
11. Never allow childish and/or sexual meaning to be extracted when conversing with a man (this can be difficult however as the average male is far more aware of childish and/or sexual meaning in a phrase than the average woman tends to be)
12. Wait for the guy to send the first message
13. Deny having downloaded anything illegally
14. Kick me in the balls for suggesting all of the above
Sunday 9 September 2007
Before I post the video, I also have the next "Greatest of All Time" blog in the works and am thinking about a "Things Guys and Girls must do on the Internet" kindof blog thingy, so we'll see how that works out.
I think an Addams Family game is next! By the way, watch The Munsters, not too shabby!
Although Catherine was the only person to actually comment agreeing with what I outlined, many others who read my blog agreed with where I stood on the matter.
It is however a strange coincidence that within a week of me writing a blog about how the Madeleine McCann case was dragging on, that we should bear witness to the startling events that occured on Friday. As things stand now (Sunday, 9th September), both parents are now arguido (suspects) and have since returned to England.
I'm sure many of you are aware of how the whole Madeleine situation arose, so I'm not going to take up this blog discussing it. What I am going to discuss is the parents, both of whom are now at the centre of the case.
The Police are suggesting - according to family friends - that Madeleine was accidentally killed by Kate, and even offered her a chance to confess in return for a shorter sentance. The family have declared this to be ludicrous accusations, and naturally they would being family, but thanks to the fact that I'm "neutral" in this affair, one cannot rule out the possibility that Kate, Gerry or both of them did indeed accidentally kill Madeleine.
While I do not want to believe that these people are capable of such a thing, especially to make such a worldwide coverage of the case, one has to wonder that the Police must have something linking them to the death of Madeleine, to declare them as suspects. Note that I am using "death" as opposed to "missing", purely for the fact that to me it seems the most likely situation now after 130 days. Perhaps the most startling evidence that we know of are the traces of blood in the apartment and the car the McCann family rented. Whilst the Police have yet to confirm that the blood is Madeleine's, it would be a very freak coincidence if the blood in both their apartment and car was completely unrelated to their case.
Assuming then that they are innocent on that front, many have pointed out that the parents are guilty of neglect, on two accounts. One being the very obvious fact that they left the children in the (unlocked) apartment on their own. - Note, conspirators were quick to point out that assuming the parents had killed Madeleine, having the doors unlocked would support their kidnapping claim - . And two, the suffering of their other twin children with regards to the media attention and what not. Leaving the children alone is bad enough, but in an unlocked apartment with no CCTV or nothing! Sure, in hotels, parents leave the kids in the rooms late at night, but hotel rooms are locked and have security cameras on most if not all hallways!!
There's a lot more that could be said here, some have suggested that the parents drugged the children into keeping them asleep, then finding Madeleine dead as a result of the drugs. It has also been said that Kate McCann is being considered the primary suspect, with Gerry being an accessory, since she was the last person to enter the apartment before Madeleine was declared missing.
What do you think?
Monday 3 September 2007
"Sexual innuendo is a hard topic to stay on top of. As a humor tool, it stands erect in the English language. While there are no hard and fast rules as to what constitutes sexual innuendo, there have been many mass debates on the topic, and now the general principles at the root of the topic are firm and well-rounded. However, full penetration of the subject requires that the reader take a long, hard look at the target and be a cunning linguist in order to avoid limp phrases and imbibe the phrase with a large handful of meanings.
A common problem with sexual innuendo is the recipient being unable to wrap their hands around the intended meaning. In this case, an individual using sexual innuendo will often start slow and eventually build up, increasing depth more and more until the recipient feels the actual thrust of the point and the innuendo climaxes. An innuendo is always the most pleasing when no one sees it coming, often by entering the mind through the rear. Some skilled people are even able to use several sexual innuendos quickly in succession, resulting in multiple innuendo-esque climaxes. Key phrases can grasp the sentence by the ankles and part its long clauses allowing the orator to penetrate the essence of the sentence.
In this regard, the key is to avoid stiff, rigid words, for ones that give the meaning of the sentence a firm rise in innuendic possibilities. Some regard sexual innuendo as an art form, and it goes without saying that one needs a certain level of oral skills in order for the fluidic exchange of innuendo to succeed. However, this is not enough to fill her requirements. One needs to pay special attention to the region of the sentence to which the innuendo will enter. For lasting effects, it is most important to enter deep within the recipient's consciousness and to ensure that all of the seeds of humor have flowed forth. This is not an easy task for most people, so it is only through rigorous repetition of the insertion of sexual innuendo that one can fully master the uplifting effects it can have on vocabulary.
Although sexual innuendo requires masterful manipulation of parts of speech (and sometimes the skillful use of body language), for most people it comes quickly. There is currently much debate over whether an extended innuendo can substitute for technique, for example:
A blonde asked a barman for a double entendre, so he gave her one."
Don't you think?
Finally we have some clarity on the matter!
1. Aer Lingus has cut its Shannon-Heathrow slot and moved it to Belfast.
2. The people in the West of Ireland are very pissed off!
3. People think the Government should intervene.
4. Shannon Airport is a disaster anyway.
So the basic story is that Aer Lingus has decided to cut its service to Heathrow from Shannon and the people of the region feel that is a disaster for the West of Ireland. RTE.ie are running a poll, and so far (when I last checked) the "Situation is over-exaggerated" option is winning out, and fact of the matter is, I agree.
First and foremost this is not (and never should have been) a Government Issue. Aer Lingus is a private company, yes the Government has a 25% stake in the airline, but guess what folks, you have to own at least 51% of any company to make the decisions, Government or not! The only reason they own 25% is to prevent Ryanair taking over Aer Lingus. Don't get me wrong now, I don't like Aer Lingus nor do I like Ryanair, but realisitcally I think they are well within their rights to end the Heathrow service. What annoys me most though here is that the people there must still think Heathrow is the centre of the world!! From what I've read and heard from people I know, Shannon is the most inconvenient place in Europe. All flights to Dublin or the UK from the USA have to stop there for an hour, but apparently new laws will eventually make this stopover unnecessary.
One has to remember that the Aer Lingus decision is based on any decision a business has to make and base it on commercial interests over sentimentality. Thanks to sliabh.net, I was able to pick up some interesting information regarding the debate. In a supposed unbiased interview on RTE, the interviewer implied that Aer Lingus is supposed to act more like the Department of Social Welfare and prop up the local economy in the area like some charity. Wake up people, commercial bodies have no such duty. One person on TV I think it was, could've been radio, as the TV and radio were on simultaneously, stated: "It's the West against the Pale". This somehow implies that the whole debate is a regional and social dog fight mixed with Dublin, and not what it truly is which is a very legitimate corporate decision.
Not having used Shannon myself, I wouldn't be able to comment on the quality of the Airport without having done some research. From several sources, the conclusion can be drawn that Shannon is a mess. One website suggested the airport "might as well be in Southern Italy the way it's run". Without being born before Shannon was built and living through its progression as an Airport I had to look deeper and during the research I learned that Shannon itself has been protected by local politicans for years, pushing forward the "forced stop-over" I mentioned earlier above all things. Another area which suggested bad management at Shannon was the "Fast-Pass self Check in system" installed by Aer Lingus. Dozens of these terminals were installed in Dublin, Cork and even JFK. What about Shannon? Only 2. Why? Local resistance in protest against a system which would make check-ins and overall service in the airport more efficient. Is it any wonder why Aer Lingus want to get the hell out of there???
People are protesting now. Just wait till the forced stop-over is lifted next year and all the big US airlines will pull out too. The EU is watching Governments that try to intervene in matters such as this and ours is no exception!
One comment during the research made an excellent point. Thanks "Kieran" whoever you may be. In his comment, he wanted to know how did the region let itself get so dependent on one service from one airline? Kieran points out that the region itself got into this mess, and only they can get themselves out of it. Good man Kieran!
Personally, I support Aer Lingus in this matter. Not that I was overly interested when I first heard the issue, but when I started to hear all the bull that started after it, I had far more sympathy for them than I had for people of the region.
Bottom line is this:- Aer Lingus are a company and made a commercial decision to leave. The Government has no say as it does not own the company, so you can't go crying to them. Given how bad service at Shannon is, is it really any surprise that Aer Lingus pulled out? Do they expect someone else to fill it up with a service so bad? The whole thing is blown out of proportion if you ask me. If a region has to depend on one service to keep its economy going then there is something wrong there, and no one but the region folk themselves can sort that out. One also has to wonder why we have Shannon airport that is so close to Cork? Cork being a far more interesting place to go ahead of Shannon anyway.
Is the end of Shannon nigh? If you ask me...yes. Not because of the Aer Lingus move, but more on reality. Next year, the EU will have the stop-over clause removed entirely rather than it being relaxed, which will have an obvious effect. The other big deal is the Terminal 2 at Dublin Airport. With the capacity to handle more passengers the effect of this is also evident. Yes Shannon has its perks, being listed as a potential emergency landing zone for the NASA space shuttle, the testing grounds of the now unused Concorde aswell as technically being the only airport in Ireland to be able to accomodate an Airbus A380, but let's face it, the day will never come when Shannon will be supporting an A380 service anyway.
This blog may be of interest, as it seems to be written by a local resident, who feels so strongly over the matter that he has dedicated a blogspot to it: http://aerlingussnnlhr.blogspot.com/
I wonder when I'll be writing a "Time to Let It Go" blog about this one.....
Sunday 2 September 2007
The first one is the most recent topic, that being the disappearance of Madeline McCann. I'm not going to comment on what I believe may or may not have gone on, what I do want to mention however is the media coverage. The main thing here is that this has been a regular news item, particularly on Sky News, for more than 120 days now. Yes, for the first few weeks media coverage was essential, naturally of course, but recently it is now all about the parents. They're going to sue Portugeuse news papers for writing "lurid allegations" about their daughter. At this stage, people don't want to know. The issue is finding the missing child. More to the point, they have two other children - twins - who are suffering aswell. I can't say for sure that this case is the most publicised case in history, but after 120 days with no real hardcore leads...shouldn't they come home?
I'm not criticising the coverage when it relates to any leads regarding Madeline herself, but the fact of the matter is...there aren't any leads. The whole thing has got to end somehow and the only way I can see that happening is if the parents come home, the longer they stay the worse it will get. Yes, I understand that as parents they want to be there, but there is nothing they can do, because all that they are doing is drawing media attention, which so far hasn't help them find Madeline any quicker.
The other thing is also an English related story and that is Princess Diana. Ten years ago now, and I remember the day well, as my friends up the road had a huge Lego set spread out on the floor in the TV room representing Diana's funeral. Yes it was the anniversary recently, but let's not forget that there was also a concert (which was terrible) in Wembley in her honour, and the tabloids give anything Diana related inhumane amounts of coverage. Again, like the Madeline media coverage, is it not time to let this go. I mean really, I don't dislike the woman or anything of the sort, but I find it annoying that I flick to Sky for real news and they are instead interviewing an author of yet another Diana book. Can they not let the woman rest in peace, and cut all this attention? Yes we all have memorial ceremonies, and yes it IS a member of the Royal Family, but should these things not be more toned down?
Am I being too harsh?