Category: huh

Raid Tombs, Not Wombs?

Lara Croft, Tomb Raider: Then and Now, by GamesRadar
So, as it turns out, the lead writer for the new Tomb Raider is a lady. This is great news, but it does cast a weird light on the misogyny claims that were flying about when the game’s trailer revealed an attempted sexual assault on Ms. Croft.

The developers intended it as a defining moment for Lara: The first time she’s forced to take another human’s life, necessitated by extreme circumstances – but the public felt it was an unnecessary debasement of their hero.

Will anyone feel differently now that it seems apparent the scene was written by a woman?

(Personally, I’m withholding judgement until I’ve actually encountered the situation in its proper context.)

(- and, yeah, it appears I’m blogging again.)

Puss in Boots

Kitten in a shoe, found at http://www.smosh.comI was doing a bit of research, and I came across this interesting/horrifying bit of information:

In 1893, an anonymous “A Veterinary Surgeon” wrote “The Diseases of Dogs and Cats” described the neutering of male cats. The cat was immobilised by rolling it in a blanket and the operation carried out without anaesthetic. This vet did not recommend the “Wellington boot” whereby a cat was thrust face down in a boot and the operation carried out quickly with a small knife (giving rise to the modern day joke of “welly boot and penknife” when booking a tomcat in for neutering).

Cats and Cat Care

On the other hand, at least the kitties could have their Tony Montana moment first.

An owner could insist on anaesthetics of chloroform or cocaine at additional cost. These were relatively dangerous and it was easy to overdose the cat.

Cats and Cat Care

The Bird

The Maltese Falcon
Jessica May ought to have the edited version of FlashCast 25 in my grubby little hands shortly, but, in the meantime, have you fully enjoyed our weekend releases?

Tonight we’re off to the bright lights and cold pavement of the city, so that we might take in The Maltese Falcon on the big screen. You’ll have to excuse me if I get a little wound up on the topic in today’s blogging: it probably ranks above Casablanca for my favourite Bogart film.

Warner hated to see actors smoking on the screen, fearing it would prompt smokers in the movie audience to step out into the lobby for a cigarette. During the filming of _Maltese Falcon, The (1941)_, Warner told director John Huston that smoking in the film should be kept to a minimum. Bogart and Lorre thought it would be fun to annoy Warner by smoking as often as possible, and got their co-stars, Mary Astor and Sydney Greenstreet to go along with the joke. During the initial filming of the climactic confrontation, all four actors smoked heavily. After seeing the rushes, Warner furiously called Huston to his office and threatened to fire him from the picture if he didn’t tell Bogart and Lorre to knock it off. Realizing their prank had backfired, Bogart and Lorre agreed to stop smoking on camera. However, when the next series of rushes came back, it was obvious that the *lack* of smoking by the actors was taking away from the sinister mood of the scene. Huston went back to Jack Warner, and convinced him that the smoking added the right amount of atmospheric tension to the story, arguing that the characters *would* smoke cigarettes while waiting nervously for the Maltese Falcon to arrive.


Bogart & Lorre, still from The Maltese Falcon

The topic also reminds me of this fantastic Adam Savage talk from TED. It’s a bit of a geek-out-on-pixie-sticks, but the ride is definitely worth the price of admission.

[youtube_sc url=]

Sam Spade refers to Wilmer as a “gunsel”, a term the censors assumed was a slang reference to a gunman. […] It is more usually an “underground” term which refers to a person who is either a “fall guy” or a “stool pigeon”, in which case Spade is making both a direct and an indirect reference to Wilmer’s character.


Wilmer the Gunsel - still from The Maltese Falcon

A Brief Audio History

Olden DaysA conversation with Mac, in the comments section of a recent post, caused me to dig through the archives a bit and look into the history of ambient audioboos I’ve released over the last twelve months or so.

Honestly, the little audio-scrapbook it’s become has me wishing I’d been doing them for years – why do we so carefully record the visual aspects of things we find exotic or worth remembering, but forget to record our audio impressions, which can be just as distinctive?

Care to follow me into a bit of time travel? Find them, in reverse chronological order, here.

Dickweed vs Dickwad

Still from Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure

I don’t have much to add to this quote, from a post entitled Historical Usage of Derogatory Slang, by Art Tayler.

dickweed, n.

slang (orig. and chiefly U.S.). derogatory.

Brit. /dkwid/, U.S. /dkwid/  [< DICK n.1 + WEED n.1]

A stupid, obnoxious, or contemptible person (esp. a man).

1984 J. ALGEO in J. E. Lighter Hist. Dict. Amer. Slang (1994) I. 586/2 [Campus slang.] Dickweed. 1986 C. MATHESON & E. SOLOMON Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (film script) 52 You killed Ted, you Medieval dick-weed! 1992 O. GOLDSMITH First Wives Club I. i. 23 It would be a pleasure to wake that dickweed up early. 2001 S. KINGDreamcatcher vi. 195 Come on, you dickweed.

dickwad, n.

slang (orig. and chiefly U.S.). derogatory.

Brit. /dkwd/, U.S. /dkwd/  [< DICK n.1 + WAD n.1 Cf. earlier DICKWEED n.]


1989 P. MUNRO U.C.L.A. Slang 33 That guy is a total dickwad. 1995Interzone June 52/1 Now, was I imagining it, or did dickwad here say something about a way out of this mess? 2002 Hotdog Feb. 19/1 Chill out, dickwad.

It’s interesting that “-weed” is valid as of 1984, but “-wad” doesn’t appear until 1989.

Rocking Horse

An excerpt from a 1933 issue of Popular Science:
Horse Of Steel from Popular MechanicsI have no idea if the beast actually worked – I suspect it did, but at a very slow pace. Still, you’ve got to admit that it looks neat, and that kid & his hat are the very portrait of gusto.

Roads be damned, I’d love to live in a world filled with nothing but airships and off-road mechanical horses.