Monthly Archives: January 2009

So Bees Can Count. We’re All Doomed.

bee

Results recently reported in PLoS ONE of a study conducted by the ANU have revealed that honeybees can be taught how to count to four. They attempted five, but then they exploded, and tiny segments of leg and honey flew all over the place and things had to be dry-cleaned. Stage two of the study will involve an investigation into whether they can be also taught to perform simple arithmetic. You’re probably thinking, “Awww imagine all the tiny honeybees doing elementary division,” but don’t. If we teach them arithmetic, do you really think it will end there? Oh no, pretty soon they’ll be asking us to teach them how to read, write and forge signatures, and we’ll be like, “hehe okay,” because who amongst us can deny something so little?*

When I was about tenish, I was pretty obsessed with insects, and the only one I hadn’t really kept as a pet at some point was a bee. So I caught one in a jar and watched in horror as it manically bashed itself against the walls and the lid until it was dead. It took about two and a half minutes. And we want to teach these reckless, nihilistic villains the value and beauty of knowledge. Really? It’s all well and cute until they figure out how to commit fraud and suddenly everyone starts receiving credit card bills for over $15,000 and eight dozen overdue library book notifications. Don’t think it can’t happen. And if bees can successfully learn that shit, you’d want to bet that all their insect brothers and sisters can too. We’ve already had the Bubonic plague, outbreaks of malaria, the deaths of hundreds of innocent Lakertyans and one tragically allergic eleven-year-old, and that was before they could accurately draw an angle bisector through an isosceles triangle. DON’T TEACH THINGS THAT CAN KILL YOU MORE THAN THEY ALREADY KNOW.

* I can, because I don’t get the luxury of free tertiary education like they do.

– bec

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Filed under Insects, Random Rants, Science

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2008

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It’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year time again at the Australian Museum, which is all very exciting for me because it features something very dear to my heart – ANIMALS!! The Exhibition features categories such as Animal Behaviour, Creative Visions of Nature, Animal Portraits, and Junior Awards, with the impressive fox image above winning the Ten Years and Under section. Stunning. You can preview the whole collection of photographs here.

This year’s overall winner was National Geographic photographer, Steve Winter, who, rather appropriately, entered his image of a snow leopard weathering a dark blizzard. On its own it admittedly doesn’t excite me that much, but a quick visit of his online gallery should be enough to convince you of his considerable talent.

But unfortunately it’s not all pretty foxes, creepy night griffins and sexually-suggestive reptiles (below), an upsetting cliché has managed to weasel its way into winning not only the Animal Portrait and also Visitor’s Choice categories. Yes, I’m looking at you, world-weary monkey! It seems like every goddamn wildlife photography competition ever held in the history of the universe has to feature some boring shot of one of these gross, overrated creatures. Ohhh look, it’s so pensive, so wise beyond its shitty chimp-features… Whatever. Wake me up when you’re done being so fucking played, monkey.

Entry to the exhibition included in regular admission and it runs till the 8th of March. Oh and when you’re done, you can go and visit my some of my other favourite things, DINOSAURS!! in the other room, and when you’re done with that, can you please pick me up a Velociraptor keyring from the giftshop, because my one broke? Thanks.

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– bec

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Filed under Animals, Free Stuff, Museum Stuff

Fuck Off With Your Shitty Display

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Okay look, I don’t want to be a downer, because you guys have obviously put a lot of effort into it all, but seriously, this would never actually happen. Your shit’s all askew. Like for starters, Lamby, how did you even get up there? Your hooves aren’t made for rock climbing, they’re made for trotting around a grassy meadow like a tiny puff of downy cloud with a very loud voice. Clouds don’t belong in some dreary half-arsed cave. And neither do you, Parrots, you’re far too pretty for this mixed-up fuckery. Get out while you can, and while you’re at it, pick Lamby up by his cloud-shoulders and haul him the hell out of there too, bearing in mind that you might want to go your separate ways once you’re in the open again. You can’t really expect Lamby to want to hang out with you in the trees all that much anyway, which is probably a good thing because did I mention that he talks real loud, like all the time? The other treetop creatures won’t put up with that bullshit for long, even if you two naive bastards think you can.

What? No, no, Wallabies, you’re fine where you are. You too, Bower Bird, just go about your business, I’ve got this. You might want to lay low for a bit though, till I sort out Snarly McSnarl over there. Wait, this was your idea, wasn’t it, Mountain Lion? You think you can just invite a whole lot of your delicious friends over for drinks and whatever, and they’re not going to get suspicious at some point? That water isn’t even real! And it’s appearing as if from nowhere! That poor Duck is plenty confused, and will probably smash his little face into it if he’s not careful. Oh and a peacock, Mountain Lion, seriously? You just got cocky with that shit, obviously. Yeah, good idea, Peacock, off you go, I’ll meet you in the tearoom in five. See, Mountain Lion? The rest of them are eventually going to pick it up too, and then all you’ll have is a bunch of weepy, sad-faced delicious friends on your hands. You don’t think Unidentifiable Tiny Mammal over there won’t bust out the cute as soon as you tell him he’s lunch, do you? Exactly.

Oh yeah, go on, Goat Features, laugh it up. Just because you’ve got horns and you’re kinda tall doesn’t mean Mountain Lion isn’t going to lunge at you the minute you check out that Fake Pond of Deception. And don’t think your weird voodoo zombie ritual is going to help you, because Mountain Lions don’t believe in that shit. And just so you know, you’re going straight to hell for all those reindeer you scalped, you hairy douchebag.

Oh, hey Frogs. What, a song? For me? Well I was going to meet this peacock for lunch about nowish, but okay, I guess one song can’t hurt. Where do you want me to sit? Up here? It’s awfully close to – hey, Mountain Lion, don’t mind me, I’ll be out of your hair in a minute.  A drink? Sure, umm, I don’t know, a water or something, maybe?

– bec

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Filed under Animals, Museum Stuff, Random Rants

The Drums, The Drums, The Drums, The Drums…

Animal!

Before I started playing the guitar, before the flute and before the piano, but probably after the recorder, I longed to play the drums. Unfortunately, due to my mother’s definition of said instrument as “noise, not music,” I was confined to sporadic sessions at a friend’s house, where her older brother would teach me simple beats. The standard bass, hi-hat and snare beat was as far as my drumming ever got, but since then, my obsession with the band’s heartbeat has never waned.

For me, it’s always been about that frantic dude at the back of the stage. Maybe it’s those incredibly quick hands. Or the ability to keep rhythm so well. Lord knows how coordination has always made me swoon.

So here, in no particular order, are the eight drummers that I think kick almost as much ass as Liam Neeson in that revenge film that left me with too many questions at the end. Like, how did he escape France without the entire force of le police nationale coming down on him? Or, whatever happened to the girl’s dead best friend?

 Anyway, I digress …

 Travis Barker – Blink 182

Dave Grohl – Nirvana

Keith Moon – The Who

Mick Avory – The Kinks

John Bonham – Led Zeppelin

Topper Headon – The Clash

Maureen Tucker – Velvet Underground (Girls on drums. Even Better)

Stewart Copeland – The Police

 Ps. I’m not entirely sure what this post has to do with Sydney (or anything really), but there will be an awful lot of drummers playing at the Big Day Out this Friday. Yes, segue FTW. 

Ra  xxx

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.Also Known As.

Also Known As

I was just thinking on the weekend about how I had not had my rad-art-in-a-Scandanavian-fashion-loft fix in quite some time. It had me concerned. Luckily, Swedish fashion boutique slash art gallery, Somedays, has a new group exhibition, AKA, on until the 2nd of February. Opening night is this Wednesday the 14th of January.  

The exhibit features Sydney artists Adem, Creon, Scribla, Volume, Bridge, Max Berry, Ears, John Doe, G’Lato and Beastman.

Get some art in you at  72b Fitzroy Street, Surry Hills.

RA  xxx

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FAIL of the Week

Vail Fail

 

Punters in Vail, Colorado viewed their first full moon of 2009 after a skier fell through a chair(less)lift on New Years Day. The 48 year old dangled pantsless and upside down for several minutes before he was rescued. A ninjasuit would have come in handy here, eh sir!

RA   xxx

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Everyone Loves Free Stuff

 

 

Santogold

Alright Syd Kids, the 32nd Sydney Festival kicks off this Saturday with Festival First Night. In 2008, the opening night event was attended by 150,000 festively intoxicated law-abiders and 50,000 drunk-off-their-nut, underage, fluoro-clad little shits (according to questionable sources).

Sadly, I was not one of those 200,000 last year as I was  enjoying the tropical waters, sand and sun of my Motherland. But come 9pm this Saturday, I can be found at the College Street stage, dancing like a mad woman to the “genreless” sounds of a certain Ms. Santi White.

Other highlights this year include The Cat EmpireBag Raiders,  (Bec may finally get to hear that song), Grace Jones and Busy P.

But my favourite bit about the event is that it is all completely free! Even drinks, if you can get your favourite trust fund baby to tag along. Check out The Sydney Festival site for maps, playing times and other assorted goodies. 

 Get Amongst It!

RA xxx

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Filed under Events, Free Stuff, Music