Brandon Starr's blog. Updated daily since March 2003. Welcome. Make yourself comfortable. Have a hot chocolate.

Brandon Starr's blog is not to be taken internally. All humor is intentional, unless indicated otherwise.
Do not read while operating heavy machinery. May cause intracranial short circuiting.
Not for children under four days of age.

If for some reason you wish to contact Brandon Starr, take a moment and reconsider.
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It's your fault now, and don't blame me when it all goes terribly, terribly wrong.

New fiction story! Click here for "The Voice of Cassandra."

Click here for my ongoing novel: "The History of Magic in the 21st Century."

Click here for the lowdown on "The History of Magic"

Click here for my new investing blog, "Adroit Investor"

Click here for my anti-Bush shirts.

Click here for my favorite design: the 'tourist safety shirt.'

Brandon Starr is available in small, medium, and large. Contents may settle during shipping. Allow four to six weeks for delivery. Open carefully; contents under pressure. Do not incinerate. May be habit-forming--do not take if you are gassy or under the influence of mimosas. Improved; now non-staining. Ships in all colors, except puce. Prompt refund if not satisfied--simply return unused portion. All queries promptly ignored. Complaints resolved with deep, gut-blasting laughter, followed by posting complaints on nearest public wall. Not responsible for sunburns. All your base are belong to us. Act now. Beware cheap imitations. Insist on the original--Brandon Starr.

Update notification by email available below.

Some fun/useful/useless links:

The Internet Movie Database

My cousin back from Iraq, and how it changed me (my current favorite entry on this blog)

My product page

Fun blogs:

infinitus opinio

Siren's Song

the mechanical jive

The Strange World

Thunderstorms in the Imajica


Elven Sarah

Random Musings (Catcher)

Certifiable Princess (Sarah 2)

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Thursday, April 01, 2004
Gateway finally wises up

Gateway to close its stores

Gateway was a brand that came to be famous on the Internet and by phone.  You never needed a store to buy a Gateway.  I have had three Gateways, and enjoyed them all.  The stores were superfluous.

I bought the last one at a store, but all that really happened was the guy took my info from the last purchase, updated a few things, put in the info on the system I wanted, and sent it--through the Internet--into Gateway's order system.  I could have, and would have, done it myself if I hadn't been in the neighborhood and stopped by to see which systems they currently had in stock.

I don't know if this means the company will immediately turn around, but I think it's a start.

I do not currently have a position, long or short, in Gateway stock.

Posted at 06:51 pm by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

early World Trade Center video

Further mining of the Prelinger Online Movie Archives:  early footage of the World Trade Center

Obviously, this movie will have a much different meaning for us now than when it was filmed, during the construction and early use of the WTC.

Just another interesting old movie from the Prelinger Archives.

Check it out.

Posted at 04:53 pm by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Wednesday, March 31, 2004
Seinfeld meets Superman

Here's the link to the Jerry Seinfeld-Superman commercials

Superman is voiced by Patrick Warburton, who played David Buddy, Elaine's boyfriend on "Seinfeld."

Warburton also played the live-action version of "The Tick."  It lasted about five episodes.

I was wretched seeing that show.  I'm a fan of the earlier, animated version of "The Tick," and they completely missed the point of the main character.  The Tick is supposed to be an ultimate goody-goody, and rather naive in his way, despite being super-strong and nigh-invulnerable.  He'd shout things like "Evil doers, back away from that cow!"

In the live-action version, Warburton plays him not as Superman-with-a-lobotomy, but as a sort of generic badass.  "You are now my bitch!" he cries at one point.

The Tick shouldn't have even known what the word "bitch" was, let alone shouted it at another person.

Ah, the memories...  "The Tick" still has the greatest-named bad guy ever:  "The Evil Midnight Bomber What Bombs At Midnight!"

If you get a chance to see the animated version, especially the earlier episodes, by all means do so.

Posted at 12:42 pm by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Tuesday, March 30, 2004
Info on revival of "Family Guy"

Here's a good article on the revival of "Family Guy"

A great show, killed by multiple scheduling moves, then revived two years post-mortem by DVD sales.

If you're a fan like me, you can't wait.

Posted at 01:08 pm by brandonstarr
Comments (2)  

Monday, March 29, 2004
Defense: God told Mom to kill her kids

"God told her to" defense for mom, accused of killing two of her kids, permanently damaging a third

“Does she follow what she believes to be God’s will or does she turn her back on her God,” defense attorney F.R. Files Jr. asked the jury.

Religion is a disease.  Rationality is the cure.

Remember, folks, she is indeed sick in the head.  That's not even an issue.  What is truly disturbing is that "God told me to, therefore it's okay" is a potentially useful defense because of the near-universality of religion in today's society.

Under any rational belief system, causing harm to others is never acceptable except when the other person is already trying to cause harm to you.  Gods, spirits, ghosts, imps, demons, your neighbor's talking dog, or any other fairy tale creature "telling you" anything is a psychosis.

Reject irrationality.  Reclaim your mind.

Or, in the words of the defense attorney, turn your back on your God.  After all, reality is in the other direction.

Posted at 07:17 pm by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Lip and tongue action

Further mining of the Prelinger online movie archives:  "Speech:  Platform Posture and Appearance"

You may have seen this short as part of Mystery Science Theater 3000, episode 619, "Red Zone Cuba."

Even without the MSTie treatment, this one's a hoot.  A goofy elf of a man makes fun of people doing bad gestures* while doing public speaking.  Then he does some strange exercises, and advocates plenty of "lip and tongue action" while speaking.  Then the people are shown speaking again, this time without the exaggerated physical deficiencies they exhibited earlier.

Even if the tips aren't helpful, one thing is true:  the host is a fascinating public speaker.  Despite an odd voice and odder ideas, I couldn't look away for a second.  He must be doing something right.

Fun and bizarre.  With just a little looking around, there are plenty more such strange shorts in The Prelinger Archives.

Check it out.

* They were obviously directed to do so--this ain't cinema verite.

Posted at 12:39 pm by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Sunday, March 28, 2004
Your Name Here

Further mining of the Prelinger Movie Archives:  "Your Name Here"

With all the hundreds of mostly stuffy industrial films in the Prelinger Archives, you might think that the 1950s-era filmmakers didn't have a sense of humor about their craft.  Not so.  "Your Name Here" is the final word in self-parody.  Here are industrial movie makers making an industrial movie that makes fun of industry and industrial movies.

The basic joke is that the film is the ad for the film--watch the film, and if you like it, they can simply add your company name to the title shot, fill in some blanks in the soundtrack, and you're all set!

Funny, odd, and quirky.  Very modern in it's sensibility, too.

Check it out.  Or check out the whole movie archive instead.

Posted at 09:29 am by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Saturday, March 27, 2004
Acoustic what?!

My cousin just had surgery for an acoustic neuroma
It is a non-cancerous tumor arising in one of the nerves of the inner ear.

Just because it isn't cancerous doesn't mean it's a laugh in the park, though.

It's rare, but not so rare that they don't know a lot about it.  Unfortunately, the first symptom is usually deafness on the side with the tumor.  So it is in Jordon's case.  This deafness is permanent, even after surgery.

In addition, acoustic neuroma can cause tintinnitis (ringing of the ears) in the ear with the tumor,* and if the tumor is untreated or grows more rapidly than most, can cause damage to the nerves which control facial movement, or even damage the brain.

We think his facial movement will be okay.  They got most of the tumor out, but a few fingers of it were too deep for removal.  He seems to be getting good treatment, and is recuperating well.

Interestingly, he is not allowed flowers or plants in his room.  Because of the surgery's area and nature, the structures of his face and jaw are in a delicate state, and sneezing could damage them.

Recovery in hospital will be about a week, we think.  Much may have to be done afterwards as far as follow-up and so on.  He's got his fiancee, parents, and brother with him for support at the hospital, though they're allowed in his room only a few minutes per hour at most.

He's a good guy.  We're hoping for the best.

* Before the surgery, Jordon had the ringing, too.  Deafness AND ringing?  Yep.  In that ear, he was deaf, because the nerve tumor had pinched off communication between his ear and brain, and yet the part of the nerve that remained was sending ringing sounds into his brain.  We know the hearing is gone permanently; we don't know about the ringing.

Posted at 04:33 pm by brandonstarr
Comments (2)  

Psychic forces cancellation of flight

A "psychic" bomb tip causes search of plane, cancellation of flight

I don't care how bad terrorism gets, we need to use MORE of our brains, not LESS of them.  Psychic abilities simply have never been shown scientifically to exist.  They are BOGUS.

If I were on a flight and it got cancelled because of some idiot bureaucrat's decision to believe some snake-oil-salesman psychic's "bomb tip," I would be furious.

We will win the war on terror with rational minds leading us to rational actions.  Following false beliefs like psychic abilities can only hinder us.

Posted at 11:45 am by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

Mining the Prelinger movie archive

Here's another gem from the Prelinger archives:  "Perversion for Profit"

The Prelinger archives is a fully downloadable collection of old, copyright-free movies available online.  The link can be found in yesterday's entry.

"Perversion for Profit" is about the creeping menace of pornography.  It is linked to Communism, the decline of morals, the rise of crime, and just about every other bad thing in society.

Who produced the movie?

Charles Keating.

Yep, the same Charles Keating who robbed millions of old folks out of their S&L money.  That is the very same scumbag.

So, perversion is "for profit," yet it is linked to Communism, which is anti-capitalist.  Huh?  And an industry which conservative people don't like but is legal is awful and wrong, but an industry which conservative people like can be raped and pillaged for one's own profit at the expense of others by the producer of this film.

Check it out.

Posted at 08:00 am by brandonstarr
Your thoughts?  

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