Saturday, September 15, 2012

Gaming Dorkness

So, have some things on order to make my first hard cider, and while I wait I've decided to wrap up a few games on my PC that I've left languishing during their second playthrough, and a new game. First on the menu is Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, probably one of my favorite Star Wars games, despite some flaws like an overly responsive camera the game really is a work of art, even today. The problem is I stopped playing the second time through when dealing with the rather... unlovely "bringing down the star destroyer" boss fight. Anyone who has played it recognizes this fight not so much as difficult, but as an annoying grind of knocking out Tie fighters and  yanking on a capitol ship with the force. 

After that I'm going to give Clive Barker's Jericho a spin. I missed this title when it first came out and it has received some mixed reviews based on gameplay that was called outdated even when it came out, and a squad of teammates that failed to be engaging. Overall most reviews call it mediocre but acceptable and I picked it up for $2 so no big risk and honestly it has Clive Barker's name on it so... I want it regardless. The man is the undisputed american master of horror.

When I get through with those I'll be returning to Mass Effect 2. I love this beautifully crafted hybrid of cover shooter and rpg almost too much, and this will be my 3rd playthrough. The only reason I didn't finish it last time was I burned myself out resource mining due to a "research ALL the upgrades" fit that had me floating around the stellar map for waaaay too long. Now if only I could find my copy of Alpha Protocol...

Downgrade

Obama has now presided over the first AND second downgrades of the United States credit rating, as earlier this week the credit rating company Egan-Jones has reduced the rating for the U.S. from AA to AA- despite the treasury secretary stating that economic quarter three would bring us out of this slump. In fact Egan-Jones has stated that "issuing more currency and depressing interest rates through purchasing mortgage-backed securities does little to raise the U.S.’s real gross domestic product, but reduces the value of the dollar" in a direct refutation of Keynesian pump priming. Suck it libs.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Blue Moon Over Congo

That, dear reader, is the face of the lesula. It's a relative of the "owl faced monkey" cercopithicus hamlyni. Notable for it's multi towned fur, expressive face, and blue ass, it is native only to a small portion of the Congo, unknown to all but a small group of villages in the region. It eats mainly soft plant stalks, leaves and flower buds making it a habitual herbivore. Now that it has been properly identified however scientists are taking steps to insure what little natural habitat the lesula has is protected so that this tiny critter can continue being both creepy and cute....


...damn does it look stoned though, seriously, who gave the lesula a joint before taking pictures?


 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

DIY: Brew Your Own

A good drink is one of those things most everyone enjoys, because there are such a wide variety there is something for ever palate. From ciders to meads, bitters to bocks, pilsners to porters. Wow, almost broke in to a Poxy Boggards song there... Anyway, my point is I have the whole Cat's Meow Brewing series and I'm planning to experiment with the recipe, the first on the list is cider. When it is ready I'm going to have a sampling with friends and post the results here.

A Bite With The Gourmand


Fudge Toffee Pecan Cookies
Buttery toffee, toasted pecans all in rich chocolate cookie; whats not to love?
What to buy: Skor or Heath bars work best in these cookies.
The delicious flavor of these cookies requires an excellent-quality cocoa powder with a 20 to 24 percent fat content.
Game plan: If you decide to use homemade or real-butter toffee, the toffee pieces will melt faster, giving the cookies a lacier appearance.
The cookie dough can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 24 hours; it can also be stored in a resealable plastic bag in the freezer for up to 2 months. In either case, allow the dough to come to room temperature before baking.
 

Time and Servings
Total Time: 35 mins
Makes: 24 cookies

Ingredients
1 cup all-purpose flour
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon fine salt
8 tablespoons unsalted butter (1 stick), at room temperature
6 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 large egg, at room temperature
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup coarsely chopped toffee, from about 3 (1.4-ounce) bars
1/2 cup toasted pecan halves, coarsely chopped
 


Instructions
  1. Heat the oven to 350°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk to aerate and break up any lumps then set aside to line a baking sheet with parchment or waxed baking paper for later.
  2. Combine the butter and sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 to 4 minutes. If a mixer isn't available this can be done by hand but it is more than a little bit of a pain. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add the egg and vanilla and mix on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute.
  3. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour mixture, and mix just until the dough comes together. Add the toffee and pecan pieces and mix until they are evenly distributed.
  4. Scoop the dough by rounded tablespoons and place 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until the cookies are set around the edges but still soft in the center, about 9 to 11 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow to cool to room temperature before removing the cookies from the baking sheet, about 10 to 15 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough. Once cool, store the cookies in an airtight container to maintain their soft texture.

News Dump: Islamic Rage, Conspiratorial Journalists, And More!

The U.S. Embassy in Cairo was defaced with pro Osama Bin Laden slogans in the attack, as well as phrases supporting a United Muslim state. Can we call these asshats terrorists yet? They certainly aren't our friend, and anyone who believes this went down without some serious support by the state or at the least the Muslim Brotherhood is a fool or naive at best and a dhimi at worst.

Of course WikiLeaks is making the claim that the U.S. and U.K. are to blame for "normalizing" the storming of embassies by not denouncing the "threat" posed by protestors outside of the Ecuadorian embassy where Julian Assange has holed himself up to avoid Swedish extradition.

We all knew the Mainstream media are frantically trying to spin for The One and insanely point fingers at Mitt Romney over a statement. But we may have proof now of a coordinated effort by journalists to try and make one presidential candidate look bad while covering for his opponent in the White House, and there isn't bias in journalism? You can read a partial transcript and listen for your self at the Righscoop in this article.

Recently Chuck Woolery, game show host and all around entertainer has been hammering Michelle Obama, asking why the AARP doesn't defend Clint Eastwood, and now attacking "racist code" nutters like Toure Neblett. on Twitchty you can see the reaction he has been getting but I'm going to repost his youtube video titled "The Cracker Code" here.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Obama May Be Top Dog, But Only Because The Mainstream Media Are His Bitches

Katrina Trinko has a great article up at National Review about the insane grilling the mainstream media gave Mitt Romney over the situation in Libya and Egypt in relation to comments he made decrying the barbarism over there. In contrast later that same day the group in ideological lockstep with Chris "Tingles" Matthews seemed to give President Obama a complete pass, letting him escape with no foreign policy questions addressed at a press event focused on foreign policy. Is anyone seriously aware of the situation and dismissing the whole issue of media bias? These people laud him as a Nobel winner when he got the prize based on his strength as a symbol of change and they refuse to question him except to toss him softballs on what sort of chili he prefers. Oh, I forgot though, that interview can't be used to criticize the media because we have a president that thinks it dignifies the office to appear on a morning zoo program.

Obama Isn't Serious On National Security? The Devil You Say!

The Government Accountability Institute, a conservative investigative research organization, examined President Obama’s schedule from when he took office until June 2012, to see how often he attended his Presidential Daily Brief (PDB), the meeting at which he is briefed on the most critical intelligence threats to the country. During his first 1,225 days in office, Obama attended his PDB just 536 times — or 43.8 percent of the time. During 2011 and the first half of of this year his attendance became even less frequent when it fell to just over 38 percent. By contrast, Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush almost never missed his daily intelligence meeting.

This sort of thing is both shocking and, if I'm being blunt, a bit stupid considering the Obama re-election team is touting his foreign policy experience as one of his biggest advantages. It's an especially grievous error considering how things are falling apart with the Arab Spring in Libya and Egypt, among other places. I'll leave it to my reader to determine how much this undermines his message, if you are a true believer in the anti-military member of the left you probably aren't too concerned, but then again if you are one of those hippies why are you reading my political stuff?

Man Detained In New Delhi For Having A Monkey On His Monkey!

A man was stopped by airport security at Indira Gandhi International Airport when guards found him smuggling a loris in his pants. The loris is a tiny endangered species of monkey native to Sri Lanka, It also is supposedly fond of thick vegetation and thorny environments, so it sounds as if the man who had it in the crotch of his pants on his way back to the UAE is in dire need of manscaping... possibly involving napalm... since the loris was completely calm by all reports. You can read the full story here, though it does show this guy to be a sick little monkey, even for a smuggler.

9/11 And The Muslim World


I didn't comment on the anniversary of 9/11 yesterday, because my feelings about it are... intense. It's a big part of why I joined the military. I don't like hyperbole that makes the victims heroes, but I also get angry when that tragedy is dismissed or the heroic people that did act on that day are disrespected. I also find it amazing how thoroughly some people miss the point, including some people in this country that excuse Muslim extremism or say we deserved it. Well, they have more to try and excuse now as there is a news story up at CNN about armed "protestors" storming U.S. embassies in Libya and Egypt on 9/11 this year. I won't blame all muslims for this, but not decrying this thoughtless violence and antagonism is a blow against moderation in their culture, and hurts any movement towards cooperation and understanding.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Hungry Hungry Koopas

Modder Kody Koala has made a custom Hungry Hungry Hippos game inspired by Super Mario, and is putting it up for sale, you can see this beautiful bit of work in more detail, as well as some of his other pieces on his site. He's planning to sell this, as well as other pieces of his work, starting on September 14th at the El Paso Comic-con so if you are there, take a gander and help a crafty bastard out.

Monday, September 10, 2012

News Dump: Teacher Strikes, Rap Music, And Other Fun

In Chicago the teachers union is organizing a strike that will affect 400,000 children and they are doing it because the teachers are underpaid, what with their meager earnings of 71,000 a year before benefits and over time. That's more than police officers and other first responders make. While I'm all in favor of teachers making a living wage that sort of imbalance is kind of silly and I hope Emanuel stands up to the union. Who knows, he might even expand the school voucher system in Chi-town as a counter to union pressure.

Lupe Fiasco has never been one of my favorite people, but recently he produced a song titled “Bitch Bad” chastised other rappers for using the term “bitch” as a description for women. The theme of the song is summed up by the phrase: “Bitch bad, woman good, lady better.” I have to say it is refreshing seeing a rapper speak out against the misogyny towards women in pop culture and especially rap. He has caught flack from critics though. Read more from NewsBusters here.


Paul Ryan is going to be headlining the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance 16th Annual “Save Our Heritage” Rally, which is sponsored by the Ithaca Gun Company on September 24 this year. The vice presidential candidate is a life long hunter and sportsman, so it is something of a natural fit. There will also be a land giveaway sponsored by the B & N Coal Company, as well as firearms and bows being given out through various raffles and the like. The event will be at the Aladdin Shrine Temple in Columbus, Ohio and tickets are available now, though seating will be limited. To purchase tickets, contact USSA at (614) 888-4868 or visit www.ussportsmen.org/rally to purchase online.
 
 The Sun is reporting that Brad Pitt has taken trust in marriage to new level. He’s given his wife, who is already rumored to be a pretty great shot, a $400,000 shooting range. Talk about a man trusting his wife. Of course the sun also has an... interesting article up on 40 year old burlesque performer Dita Von Teese.

 
 
 
 

Sunday, September 9, 2012

News Dump: Dirty Jobs, Presidential Politics, And Bloviating Bastards

Mike Rowe released an open letter to Mitt Romney about the devaluing of honest manual labor in American culture today, it wasn't a letter of endorsement even though the letter was up beat and optimistic even when discussing some of the big problems today. It's a real chance for Romney to clarify his plans for getting America back to work, and if he gets the support of someone like the host of Dirty Jobs it can't help but boost his personal image. Read the whole letter here.

Michael Moore is bloviating on Twitter about how no one at his high school reunion said they were voting for Romney. Hey Mikey, maybe they just didn't want to be stampeded by an intellectually dishonest liberal hippo, ever consider that?

Beam Up Some Family Guy, Scotty

Scientists at the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the University of Vienna made a huge leap towards sat-based quantum communication this week when they established a new record, transmitting data across a distance of 143 kilometers earlier this week through quantum entanglement. This isn't exactly Star Trek teleportation (even if some over eager reporters have likened it to such) since no matter is being transported, but it does allow for (theoretically) perfectly secure communications since the entangled quantum states have no detectable connection. This would also mean perfect clarity in communications. Without a signal to scatter background radiation no longer becomes an issue. Read the whole Lab Spaces article for more.