The Unswung Bat

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Awards Show

And the nothing goes to Leora! And since no one else bothered to write a story, clearly you could benefit from exposure to her special brand of creativity, therefore, at no cost to you, I'm publishing the tale, entitled "Pirate Story," for the world to read here on this global forum.

Pirate Story

By Leora Courtney(-Wolfman)

Personally, I don't think a priate with a nameless
ship is something to LOL about. Oh, no. Pirates are
ridden with a condition not unlike penis envy when it
comes to having the best named ship.

I learned of this in the summer of 1997 when I was
enrolled in a canoe camp. My camp counsellor, who we affectionately called "Walfy" was coincidentally the same pirate you speak about. I always thought he was a bit odd, but never suspected that he was a pirate until I received a postcard from him two years later on the eve of my fiftteenth birthday.

I have since lost the postcard, cause my mom has this
bad habit of recycling everything and anything that
looks like it once was a happy tree branch in rural
British Columbia. I don't know why, but she does.

Alas, the postcard is gone, but the closing statement
of it still haunts me every night of my life.

"Leora, name me boat or I will mail ye a sting ray!"

I was at loss for ideas, but didn't want my 15th
birthday to be a day full of worries, so I sent a wire
across the ocean to him:

"Walfy (stop). I have named the ship Alabaster
(stop). Yours truly (stop). Leora (stop)."

Amazingly, naming the ship "Alabaster" was a turning
point in Dermot McWalfish's career as a pirate. He
left the ship at a warf just off Cambodia so that he
could have nine slaves, none older than eleven,
paint the name onto the ship. Why nine? Because there
are nine letters in the name "Alabaster".

The slaves were neither literate, or fluent in
English, so it took a few days to do this job
properly. During that time, McWalfish wandered the
streets of Kompong Som searching for potential
crew-mates. Late one night at a speakeasy/brothel he
met a young Frenchman named Olivier DesSources who had
been stranded in Cambodia since he was a child when a
cruise ship he was on caught fire and sunk, leaving
him as the only survivor.

McWalfish could not believe what he was hearing! That
same cruise ship was the cruise ship he was searching
for. Legend had it that when the cruise ship sunk,
millions of dollars worth of vintage wine sunk with

Yes, that was the "treasure" he was searching for.
His plan was to sell half the wine and drink the other
half. Then use the money he made by selling the wine
to buy more wine (Maria Cristina though, cause it's

It was a deal. Olivier became McWalfish's personal
bodyguard, both asea and on land.

McWalfish made a good choice. While at sea, they
encountered McWalfish's long lost enemy: Murdoch
McWalSeabass. Murdoch not only had his eye on the
legendary crewship, but he also fancied young
Frenchmen and had a dungeon full of them on his ship.

So what happened? Did McSeaBass kidnap Olivier? Did
anyone find the sunken cruise ship?

I don't know. I haven't heard from McWalfish in a few
years, and I couldn't quite decipher the postcard he
sent me because he was so drunk at the time of writing
it that the postcard was incomprehensible.

A friend just explained his experience watching Kill Bill 2 while dead tired, fighting to stay awake and coming down from a high at half-past midnight. I suggested he do the Passion of the Christ the same way. Nice people. Happy people.

I gotta get my wisdom teeth out. Sucks to that. And to your ass-mar.

This concludes the Awards.

PS: Free Tibet and get out of Iraq.

Stop! Lamatime.

Face it, you really can't touch this.



So I'm going to see the Dalai Lama's ceremonial acceptance of a Doctorate Degree of Laws and the Acharya Sushil Kumar peace prize. Today, at 2:45. Sweet!

The Dalai Lama is the Man, and I'll tell you why:

  1. Non-absolutism in religion - he ended his speech at the skydome by saying "and if you think what I say is nonsense, then forget about it," and then he laughed.

  2. Secular Ethics - A concept he articulated, maintaining that basic human goodness exists independently of a religious framework. If I and every other person in the skydome had been holding a glass of champagne, I would have proposed a toast.

  3. Non-violent protest - Well how much do I really have to say about this? There's websites out there, go read 'em.

  4. The idea that religious, economic, and social concerns are inseparable - It seems like I wouldn't agree with this, but what I like about it is that it contradicts the dogma of the modularization of modern, technological life

You know what he's done for Tibet, let me tell you what he did for me. Thanks to the schedule overlap between the ceremony and my physics exam, my registrar just informed me that I've been granted an exam deferal, and because I'll be in Europe this August for legitimate reasons, I won't have to write the physics exam until next year! Either December or even April, we're not sure yet. Either way:


Monday, April 26, 2004

Teknickel Ishyues

Lugas says my links bar doesn't show up in Mozilla-type browsers. Is anyone else using Mozilla not noticing link bars to my left and link bars to my right? I looked through my code and can't find a reason this might be, but if anyone with Mozilla wants to look at my stylesheet and help me out, it's pretty easy to find. I assume that if you're using Mozilla you're nerdy enough to know what you're doing, and probably better than me.

Julian, from the Julian Calendar (no, not that calendar, the blog) has dropped me a link. Cheers, Jules, my one big question for you is what they call a Big Mac in Australia. His site's on the link bar to my right, which you can't see if you're using Mozilla, apparently. Which is too bad, until someone explains to me how to fix it. Hopefully other people will see fit to read and link to my blog for reasons other than having known me for years.

I offered, in my guestbook, to buy people lunch off my food card, which has $350 remaining and only nine school days left with which to spend it before it disappears. That is right, I'm willing to give people free food just for coming to see me. Saddest thing is no one's taken me up on the offer. Jerks. It's alright, revenge will be mine when I emoticonally moon you, à la Chloe:


Andra and I ran up the CN Tower on Saturday with Ian. I'm gonna call it running. We made it up in 21 minutes, not bad at all.

Thursday, April 22, 2004


The New Model

Are you surprised? I bet you are. Check out my blog's summer wardrobe. Man, having to study for exams has led to an astronomical increase in my time-wasting productivity. On the bright side, instead of learning about physics or Western lit, I learned all sorts of web standards stuff. You could read this blog on a cellphone now if you wanted. I would've done an RSS syndication deal, but not enough people read this anyway.

I am one step closer to the Dalai Lama, now that I've dropped off my petition to defer my physics exam so I can go see his honorary degree ceremony and speech. I've been given the following requests:

  • Ask him if it's true he was Chosen to be the Dalai Lama the way it was in that movie (I don't know), where three days after the previous Dalai Lama died, his head (the dead one) lolled in a certain direction, and his followers went off thataway looking until they found young Tenzin Gyatso. Andra's dad wants to know that.

  • and

  • Sing the badger song while he's talking. Ben wants me to do that. I said no, but I will think the song briefly while he speaks. Ben said it would be great if the Dalai Lama can read my mind and hears me think-singing it, and sings MUSHROOM MUSHROOM.

But that song ain't even funny.

Anyone else? You've got until Tuesday morn.

I just bought six bottles of orange juice (minute maid, oj is oj to me) three pink lemonades and a crangrapeberry juice. Having to use up $400 in dedicated food money from your smart card in 2 weeks can be fun. Last week I bought 40 chocolate bars. A dilemma: on the one hand, I've got so much free money to use up before it gets deleted on May 8th. On the other hand, I it wouldn't do to get all fat and stuff.

A dilly of a pickle if ever there was one. Anyone want free food?

Pay me a visit, I'll hook ya right up.

Oh, and I'm now using Gmail, so, you know, w00t and stuff. Everyone try sending stuff to at At the moment i'm not planning on switching for good. For example, I need to know if I can use Outlook with it and all the normal stuff I worry about with email. 'Cause email's bloody damn important these days. Still, 1Gb of free mailage. Sounds good to me.

Now, then, it's normally my practice, ever since the blogodrama, to put ordinary blogging fare second and writing stories and things first, or at least snippets of respectable writing. Today would be an exception, but here's what I want you to do instead:

  1. There is a pirate in the South Seas named Dermot McWalfish. He has worked other jobs.

  2. His Ship will need a name

  3. His title is Dread Sea Dog

  4. You must give me a brief account of one of his crew members and the treasure they are searching for, as well as an explanation of his arch-nemesis.

Here's one student's example:

LOL before dermot was a milkman and his ships name is THE tIPSY BARNICLE and his looker-outer guy is Gilmont, who is a Hungarian Lord in disguise looking for his long lost brother Rakluzs and Capn McWalfish is hunting for Pete Best's right leg and his arch enemy is EVILMAN O'DEDLY, who is a hamster ninja OMG!!!!! XP T_t z0rs

The best entry wins nothing!

Wednesday, April 21, 2004
Car Crashed In The Middle of the Road Outaside a My Window

I think he's president of Ireland

Who makes waffles? Someone out there makes 'em. I demand a Waffles of Mass Deliciousness party. Canada cannot sit idly by while the ingredients of Waffles of Mass Deliciousness sit unseen, untasted, in the dark cupboards and pantries of innocent-looking kitchens. I will dispatch an international team of Waffle Inspectors.

Did anyone else know Kermit the frog went on the Daily Show? Coolio can do Beat the Geeks as much as he wants, he'll always be second fiddle to that.

Can anyone tell me the semantic difference between <em> and <i>? Looq?

I'm not gonna see Max and Luke before they go to Southeast Asia to get stabbed robbed and raped and experience various other behaviors of Southeast Asian primates. And they're going to Borneo. They're gonna see orangutans. If they go to Borneo and don't see orangs they're what one British fireman called "stupid berks." There's only twenty years left, unless we stop killing them with our stupid crap.

Speaking of killing things with our stupid crap, are you aware that 99% of blogs in the world suck? Of course you are! You read them! Sometimes you even write them! Actually, I should say that all blogs suck at least once in a while. Sure, why not? Just 99% suck consistently.

But the worst of these are the anti-blog blogger types who only write about how much blogs suck and how bloggers are stupid, complain about Moveable Type and bandy about words like "iMac" "latté sipping" and "smug hipster." Dude, you're blogging right now. I'm not really complaining, mind you. Anything I can do instead of studying is obviously good for something.

Some nice trends I like:
  • Blogs by writers, about writing (check out "Future Grizzly" in the links. Not the best, but with a bunch of other links)

  • Blogs by good writers who're used to publishing and are writing on the side in much same the way as movie stars appearing in off-broadway plays. Salam Pax is the opposite, he started out by writing that sort of blog and ended up hired by the BBC. Wesley Crusher isn't. He sucks.

  • ridiculously geeky blogs

  • and leora's blog, which is not a trend because there aren't a bunch of them.

I've got a surprise for you.

Monday, April 19, 2004
Paging Dr. Rosenrosen


I'm giving myself 20 minutes to do this post. So here we go.

Stop putting two spaces after every period. There's no reason for it anymore.

Looq might be glad to know I'm learning about graceful degradation. My own degradation hasn't been nearly so pretty.

Here's a good word though. Senescence, the gradual physiological decline of biological functions leading towards the death of an organism. Reminds me of oak trees somehow.

I keep putting two spaces after a period by force of habit.

A man on the radio wants me to buy the lawn fertilizer with "double-coated nitrogen." Meanwhile my exam tomorrow morning with the crazy professor is drawing ominously nigh, and Robin Williams is trying to sell Cadillacs.

You know what your problem is, Joey? You're a chauvinist, and a pig, and you don't respect women.

I respect the hell outta women. Especially their minds.

What the hell does 29 dimensions of compatibility mean? Dating services should just be honest: "You're a 40 year-old professional failure with a sporadic income and a basement apartment at your parents' house. Don't you think you'll take whatever you can get? Call now."

I keep trying to call John Stewart John Daily, 'cause it's the Daily show, but then he just ignores me, so I better start getting it right. He had a bit called the Sadr House Rules the other day. I laughed.

Tim Robbins is the bad guy in this movie.

Sunday, April 18, 2004
Halcyon Days

It cannot survive his secret attack.

Well, in the past 2 weeks I've left 3 blog entries unfinished. The only one I managed to get done was the Mick Jagger one, and that didn't turn out too good. So instead of, you know, thinking about what I'm writing, I'm just gonna jot down a list of things I have seen in the past few whiles.

  • two cabs drag racing. back vs black diamond. beck won, w00+?

  • the park, at a picnic, with Andra and easter candy. I learned to never underestimate the ability of a female to consume chocolate. I tend to savor them, or at least chew.

  • Tafelmusik, randomly, at a free concert, at the ROM, with Opera Atelier performing from an opera written for the Sun King.

  • A TTC driver harass every Black person who got on the streetcar from Yonge street to the Beaches. asstoast.

  • the word asstoast. also assclown and assy. in the "cheers" section of "cheers and jeers," a feature of my college's terrible newspaper. terribly awesome.

  • Ballet Creole! "modern" dance and african drumming so good it can only be called spectastilious

  • your mom. erika's a bad influence on me

  • a plate of muffins and cake and pie, randomly, when Andra and I got to my home. Mmm, pie

  • an email message telling me I have tickets to the Dalai Lama honorary degree ceremony at Convocation Hall, during which he will address the convocation and receive the Acharya Sushil Kumarji Peace Award. :-D

  • I can only go if I can convince my physics prof to let me write the exam at a different time :-|

  • all sorts of other clever things, which I forgot about pretty much promptly.

I was gonna write a whole lot more but now I'm gonna not, so you gotta go find something else to read.

Ciao Fratelli e sorrelle

Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Sir, I Demand Satisfaction

Just a quick note
School has been too fucking busy
I haven't spent a whole lotta time around "other people," as you call them
I don't use a lotta apostrophes cause the keys all the way over there
But thats ok
I have plans, big plans
And at a time when even Byron is starting to feel burned out
and at a time when I gotta be at school tomorrow
and whens your last exam
and cant, studying
my dog is fucking depressed, she goes round looking at the floor and not biting things
if any a you lameass, button-pushing, boring, anemic, obsessive, mumbling, anxious, jaded geeks with bad hair (which rules out some of you but not many and definitely not me) don't meet for a game of stickball at high noon at bowmore field on the second saturday of May,
Mick Jagger will suck your bones out and crunch them in your ear
or at least send you a mean-hearted email.

Tuesday, April 06, 2004
At Second Glance -

That essay I linked to at the end of yesterday's post turns out to be a very good essay you should all read. You probably all have. I'll put it here again anyway.

One point of disagreement, Hemingway, Faulkner, and especially Steinbeck are simply awesome writers. Thank god I wasn't forcedfed them in highschool.

Goddammit! Alison's whole damn blog is gone again! There should be a mandatory week-long cool-down period in between deciding to erase the page and being able to.

I'm gonna leave that link up for a while in case it comes back.

Monday, April 05, 2004
Friends and Well-Wishers

In that they don't wish me any specific harm, of course.

Well I'm torn over 100q's well-founded criticism. As far as I can tell, although each of his entries has its date attached to it in an id element, I can't link directly to a specific entry the way I would with a normal god-fearing blog, so I'm just gonna point you towards him and tell you "March 29, 2004, C.E."*

I'm well aware that the coding of this blog isn't up to nerd spec, and his HTML could beat up my HTML and also is handsomer and has a better car. On the other hand, I'm not about to start using <ACRONYM> tags any time soon. Especially for words like HTML that most people only know as acronyms.

And yet, looking at his blog's code and css, the only thing I can't understand is one crazy hack he uses involving the funny diamond logo. Whereas looking at my blog's code, I pretty much don't understand anything without staring at it for ten minutes and comparing it to the finished, "rendered" blog. And even then I have to preview any changes to the layout I make before posting them to ensure that I didn't accidentally destroy everything.

Luke's extremely simple yet visually effective blog - even the plain HTML, without the stylesheet looq dresses it up in, still looks pretty good, once you wipe off the grafitti - is a model that I don't think I'll actually live up to, but I'll at least keep in mind as one of those things I would aspire to, given the time and a brighter soul.

On the other hand, I am obsessive enough to care about this page's layout. Not terribly competent, mind you, but interested nonetheless. I must've spent three or four hours getting yon links bar off rightwards to work the way I wanted it to. On the other hand, this contents bar onna left is really just in the way, but I wanna keep some semblance of it anyway. I was even thinking of expanding it and putting in a sort of miniblog for brief thoughts I want to highlight, like "go look at" I tried doing that, but couldn't figure it out. Also I notice the dumbjokes button is currently not highlighting. Probably time to either get rid of it or actually write down some of these dumb jokes that people have sent me, anyway.

So in conclusion, don't look for any changes to my gutter-HTML in the coming weeks and months, though if one or two happen to come along, smile but don't point, it's rude. I am, though, gonna learn a bit more about stylesheets and basic layout, since what else am I gonna do around here, study?

* Which reminds me, it's passover. Make with the lamb's blood if you know what's good for you.

Oh, also I noticed none of you felt like talking about the Christopher Walken story. Fine.

original site + text contents ©2004 twenty oh four by me called it

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