That pitchfork again? Or was that a different thread?
Completely different. This was a salad fork. I don't know where that sits on the rock'n'roll scale, but I imagine it'd be quite low down.
I don't think I've ever been to a gig that was actually, genuinely too loud. However, in my younger, wilder days, I did seem to fairly consistently allow myself to be shunted towards the speaker stacks. Probably a function of my inherent politeness, I can't mosh because I have to apologise and move out of the way every time I come into contact with anyone, no matter how lightly.
I remember in particular an orientation week gig at VUWSA in '95 (Law Students' toga party, if I remember correctly) where I was deafened in one ear for a week after having myself pushed up against the stack while South Side of Bombay performed the extended version of "What's the Time Mr Wolf?". A similar thing happened a couple of years ago at the Mars Volta's set at the BDO.
Most of the concerts I've been to have had extremely well behaved crowds, come to think of it. Smashing Pumpkins' Mellon Collie tour stands out as being an absolute highlight for me-thousands of hyped up, happy people lapping it up, and a band that seemed to be doing the same (even when the Supertop leaked and dripped on top of Jimmy Chamberlin.) About the only "rowdy" part of the night was a guy standing next to me with a fork (why a fork? I have no idea) as the person in front of fell backwards into him. Very minor injuries resulted, but all was dealt with in good humour-although I distinctly remember reports of a "stabbing" in the Herald at the concert days later. I always wondered if they'd been talking about the forking.
Funnily enough, a Shihad gig during the Fish album tour at the Powerstation was the only time I ever found myself in physically hurt at a concert-a guy who wanted to go crowd surfing decided to jump up without warning anyone and kneed me in the nose. We laughed about it afterwards...
Russell Brown wrote:
Lisa Lewis's vision of mass bikini-streaks just sounds idiotic and tedious.
I don't know. I'd have to see a few myself to make that call.
It's interesting that the term "election fraud" in the States can mean two vastly different things. You have the questionable outcomes and inherently partisan nature of the electoral machinery that results in outcomes that can't be trusted as being legitimate (even if they are, which is the sad thing.)
Then you have all the individual voters prosecuted for "voter fraud" for things like registering to vote (but not actually voting) when one is ineligible, or electoral workers registering "ghost voters" (who are never actually going to go into a polling booth, obviously.)
The former seems to be predominantly a Republican issue, while the latter is generally restricted to Democratic voters. And despite the first being reasonably able to significantly influence election outcomes while the second could never add more than a few thousand illegitimate votes nationwide, they both receive the same airtime, and the same emphasis, muddying the waters significantly.
In fact, the current "Attorneygate" dramas swirling around AG Gonzales are fairly significantly tied up with investigations into the latter kind of fraud. Via TPM, there's a great rundown on the connection from McClatchy.
I had the good fortune to get an after school job working in the local library when I was at high school, so I read everything I could get my hands on.
The one book that changed how I viewed books was Demian by Hermann Hesse when I was 16. I'd just begun to explore Jungian psychology and Gnosticism, and was going through my own teenage growing pains, so reading about another "special" youth (and don't we all think we're special at that stage?) also struggling with the works of Jung (and ultimately rejecting them as not going far enough in their mystical elements) was magical.
In many ways, that was the first time I had been confronted with the idea that I could approach Jung critically, and take or leave the elements that didn't seem to make sense to me. It also opened me up to this idea of the "Western Mystery Tradition" (i.e. the occultism of the Golden Dawn and Crowley) as being a path of self-discovery and adventure.
I've quite dramatically drifted away from all that over the years; I'm now a heartless atheist and materialist, and think that Jung is pretty silly. I went back to try and read it again a few years ago and ended up being sullenly disappointed. It all seems so trite and mannered, with such overtones of the Übermensch, that I can't even imagine what it must have been like to be that 16 year old who loved it so dearly. But yes, at the time I was reading it, I was in a dialogue with an author who understood where I was coming from like no other.
Paul Rowe wrote:
But it is quite fun to call the Righties "fascists" and sit back to watch the righteous indignation fly.
I had a rather "lively" discussion with a couple of American friends in the wake of the Don Imus hoohah about whether there was a word that would offend white people as much as the word "n*gger" offends black people.
We pretty much all agreed the equivalent was "racist".
Hadyn Green wrote:
Why do people believe conspiracy theories?
I often wonder if maybe it's actually a secret, stubborn hope that humanity in general isn't as dumb as it appears.
Virtually every conspiracy theory requires the belief that the people involved are secret geniuses, manipulating current events and the media the way a chiropractor manipulates subluxions.
Robyn Gallagher wrote:
Don't let PA System become one of those forums.
Oh come now, you get better at getting the first post the more you practice!
We could always do what Fark.com does and have "First post" filtered to "Boobies" and twelve hours added onto the timestamp of the post.
Russell Brown wrote:
Nice to see Mr Wishart's onto it.
I must admit, I chuckled to see this:
Or will we still be intoning 'there were no WMDs in Iraq' when the Islamic bomb goes off?
I don't even know if that's a metaphor.
Argh, sorry for the rant, I'm all hyper about seeing Dimmer and Jakob tonight.
We're not with Telecom, but it annoys me no end that the standard helpdesk response to any broadband problems is, "Oh, it's at your end." No, we have two fairly computer-savvy people living here and it is not at our end. And no, re-entering the configuration data will not suddenly make our connection work when your service is down over the whole area.
I'd respect them a whole lot more if they'd just tell the truth.
Generally, someone at the Xtra Broadband Helpdesk will never come out and say "It's your equipment." They'll go through a process of elimination and leave that judgment up to you. The reality is that upwards of two thirds of all calls to the helpdesk are eventually proved to CPE (customer premises equipment.)
So while you might have tech savvy people on hand, a lot of people don't and it makes good business sense to prove problems out of private equipment first before going any further.
There's also an issue around training-with the vast increase in broadband-related calls in the last two years they've had to train people from other departments to take "reception mode" broadband calls to prevent wait times lengthening out drastically. Reception mode is intentionally short on any technical info-the rep can perform basic checks, check for network outages in the area, and run through steps described in online helpfiles, but that's about it. Anything more complicated is escalated through various channels.
That inevitably means that the reps taking these reception mode calls have no clue what they're doing half the time, because they have no need to know (as far as the ISP is concerned-this isn't specific to Xtra by the way.) Most will deal with that lack of information well, but inevitably human psychology kicks in when dealing with a particularly aggravated individual andthe rep will simply make stuff up to buy themselves some breathing space. That can obviously lead to further frustration on the part of the customer in the long run.
On a tangent, I see that in the business section of the Herald today, Jenny Keown attempted to imply that Telecom had admitted that the problems with Slingshot and ihug's DSL services were partially its fault. I've spent the last two weeks sitting next to the people responsible for notifying Telecom (including Wholesale) of any and all system outages and coordinating the response, and they were flabbergasted. They are convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt those problems stem from a known issue with those ISPs' login systems.
Anyway, it's going to be interesting moving from working for the Evil One to the competition (last day today!) I've had nothing but joy from my Xtra Pro plan-6MBps down/512kbps up and never a drop in an area with notoriously poorly maintained lines. It'll be interesting to see if I can be convinced to move to another ISP even when I'm no longer getting it for free.
Oh, and one final note: LimeWire and Gnutella-related P2P applications no longer seem to work for me for downloads. They display "Connecting..." but never initiate the download. Uploads still work. I'm assuming it's a problem with the client specifically because other P2Papps (eMule and WinMX) still work fine. I know of at least one other person experiencing the same thing, anyone else?
Wow, Keith looks absurdly worried. Perhaps he's concerned about his black t shirt tipping off Customs?
Very nice article, by the way, it almost makes me sorry I don't shell out for the HoS anymore.