Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Sources in the Vatican have claimed that the Pope is "in a very bad way." The leader of the Catholics, who has been looking pretty rough for the last couple of years, missed his general audience last week for intestinal problems. He has had a bevy of medical problems in the past, and also suffers from Parkinson's Disease, but he won't call it quits just yet. The Vatican claims that he isn't finished doing the Lord's work, but I think it's because he's afraid of having to report in to his boss when his "review" comes. He's some explaining to do about the problems the church has been having recently. God has to be pissed at him.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

We recently heard the President say that he did not believe that Saddam Hussein had anything to do with the September 11th attacks. He may have had ties to members of Osama bin Laden's terrorist organization, Al Qaeda, but so does everyone in the Middle East. And today Hans Blix, former weapons inspector for the UN, concedes that Iraq most likely destroyed it's arsenal of WMDs ten years ago after the first Iraq war with America. This leaves us with an important question: Why did we attack Iraq?

I can understand that we were a little trigger-happy back then, and Saddam refused to let weapons inspectors into Iraq initially; but we did finally get inspectors in there, and they found nothing. We had no reason for attacking that country. Instead of telling us whay we didn't go there, why can't they tell us why we did.

Thursday, September 11, 2003

It is now the second anniversary of the World Trade Center attacks and whatever really happened at the Pentagon(that was just for the German conspiracy nuts), and I've noticed something pretty nice. There are still almost as many American flags on cars driving around Silicon Valley as there were at the begining. I was completely convinced that within two months everybody would be pulling off the flags because they were "out of fashion". But I have been surprised by my largely self-serving neighbors; you will still see a flag on one out of every six cars or so, just no more people driving around in their pickups with the full-size flags, unfurled and majestic, streaming out behind them like some glorious redneck wet dream. People still fly their flags, as I do, hopefully in solidarity of all those poor people out there who gave their lives not only during that fateful day, but also in the ensuing military actions. They lost their lives, by choice or by consequence, because of their belief in the American way of life, and they should be honored for that.

But when Britany Spears tells us we should just back up Dubya 100% in all of his decisions, I want to smack her over the head with a nine iron.

Sometimes a practical joke can be taken too goddamn far. An unfortunate soul in Turkey was a victim to a practical joke that landed him in the hospital. Seems he asked a coworker to blow off some dust off his back with a high-pressure air compressor, and the coworker decided to inflate him like a balloon instead. Now, I would have found this funny myself if the pressure wasn't so great that his intestines were shredded, but that's just me.

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

Great Britain has now been sold out to the European Union by Tony Blair. Apparently, the good folks at The Sun are not too happy about it. I can't say I blame them. This move will do wonders for the rest of the EU, but will have potentially devastating effects on the UK. Prime Minister Blair just seems to have oodles of good ideas, doesn't he? Now the Queen will be just a political figurehead...oh, wait. Nevermind.

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

For only the seven hundredth time in my life, a new doomsday has been calculated. The dreaded date: March 21st, 2014. This one actually has some credence, however. Scientists have discovered a giant asteroid hurtling toward Earth, but only give it a 1 in 909,000 chance of hitting our home. You know, slightly better than your chances of being hit by lightning or being attacked by a shark. But scientists are quick to add that the odds should go down as more data is gathered. Yeah, sure, like they are going to actually up the odds and tell the public. They're probably building spacefaring Arks right now and loading them up with rich folks, royalty, and scientists to populate a new world while we just sit here and suck it.

While the chances of being wiped off the face of the Earth are "pretty slim", they are still giving this particular piece of space debris a good look. It probably has something to do with the impact of such a rock to be comparable to 20 million Hiroshima atomic bombs! MUHAHAHAHAHA! Another thing is that is interesting is the fact that the Aztecs predicted the last day of Earth as being the same date, but in 2013. One year off, that ain't so bad.

Tuesday, September 02, 2003

Have you ever camped out for tickets to a concert you really wanted to go to? How about one you didn't want to go to? For some folks, it isn't about the show selling out, but about getting tickets that are as close to the band as possible. There's something about being right up against the stage as you fawn over the artists onstage, it seems that they are singing all of their songs just for you, not the diskheads in nosebleed who bought their tickets at the gate. While I have rarely been fortunate enough to sit in the very front, I have camped out for tickets to a wide variety of shows. I once spent a whole night sitting behind the Ticketmaster in Ridgewood, N.J. with some girls I've never met before, smoking pot and waiting impatiently for tickets to Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Yeah, it was sad, especially when you consider that we were the only people camping out. Still, it was a good time, and the girls got some great seats.

Well, that time may well be behind us now. Ticketmaster has decided to jump inot the scalping fray by auctioning off the front row seats to the highest bidder. Missing work to camp out won't help you now, but going to work instead of camping out will. Ticketmaster says there may be no cap to the prices, it just depends on who's got the biggest wallet. One Phish fan whined, "The band's biggest fans ought to have the best seats, not the band's richest fans." I've got news for you, buddy: They don't want the smelliest fans up front. None of us do.

An industry analyst is quoted as saying that prime seats at the hottest concerts are "undervalued in the marketplace" and auctions are likely to push prices up as a whole. Tickets have long been resold in auction settings - particularly on eBay, which does a heavy volume in tickets of all kinds. But in many states, the resale of concert tickets is subject to strict rules meant to protect consumers and give the small scale fan a chance to buy tickets for their favorite event. Ticketmaster's plan, by contrast, involves the first time sale of tickets and does not appear to be subject to anti-scalper rules.

"The tickets are worth what they're worth," said Ticketmaster CEO and president John Pleasants, in an interview with the Times. "If somebody wants to charge $50 for a ticket, but it's actually worth $1,000 on eBay, the ticket's worth $1,000. I think more and more, our clients - the promoters, the clients in the buildings and the bands themselves - are saying to themselves 'Maybe that money should be coming to me instead of Bob the Broker.' "

Yet another reason why Arena Rock sucks.