Wow, I knew the US treated enemy combatants badly but I didn’t know the same applied to those who were their friends

Former Navy man works for company in Baghdad. Man detects strange goings-on in company. Reports strange goings-on to FBI. Man is told to leave company. Man contacts US embassy in Baghdad for help. Company gets raided and man is imprisoned in Baghdad for being a security risk and associating with the people he was informing on (via This Modern World).

He said he had also witnessed another employee giving American soldiers liquor in exchange for bullets and weapon repairs.

I want to know what punishment the American soldiers received. Nothing like Mr Vance suffered, I presume. I’m surprised that his friend, who was also wrongfully imprisoned, went back to Baghdad to work, although I’m sure he’d be buggered (pun intended) if he did anything to help the American troops.

Why didn’t they let Vance tell them that he had a contact in the FBI and then proceed to verify his story and then let him go? How did it get so FUBAR’d? I bet it has something to do with no one wanting to take responsibility if they let him go and he did turn out to be a baddie.

I bet this makes Iraqis feel safe about working with the troops in their country.

Target Wii

Um, how about “Don’t let go of the Wiimote during gameplay.”: “Filed in US District Court for the Western District of Washington earlier this month, the lawsuit describes the original strap on the Wiimote as “ineffective for its intended use” and cites reports of the strap breaking and causing damage.” — Nintendo sued over Wiimote straps, Ars Technica

Glasgow Fashion Week

Glasgow’s going to get its own Fashion Week! Apparently, “Glasgow is consistently described as being at the cutting edge for all things fashionable and chic.

I dunno, loads of the things I’ve seen look like Xiamen specials. Plus I’d prefer to see local designers instead of Topshop and Miss Selfridge. Glasgow Fashion Week will be good for tourism, they say. In March? Unless the tourists are from even further north… it’ll be freezing!!

Anyway. I like fashion and new clothes, I’m just not fashionable and really cheapskate when it comes to shopping. But looking at new clothes and making snarky remarks? I’m up for that!

Possibly a very unpopular post

This is gonna be so uncool of me, but I have to say it.

I’m not into the Web 2.0 ‘look’. I don’t like all those buttons and rounded everything with extra drop shadows for added trendiness. I don’t like all these shadows and reflections on every freaking thing. Gradient backgrounds are nice as long as they are few and far between.

Not that I want to go back to the days of neon <h1> headlines and tiled backgrounds of Drew Barrymore (*cough*). All the supposedly Web 2.0 sites kind of look the same, though. I don’t like doing ‘me too’ sites.

That, I suppose, is my main gripe. Web 2.0 ‘design’ is one hell of a large bandwagon. I think my surliness with respect to this new style started with the proliferation of the Kubrick theme on WordPress (mainly because it was shipped as the default — I was so resistant to using it that I enabled the fugly Classic theme and worked like fuck to get my own theme up). It’s one thing for a few bloogs to use Kubrick, it’s completely another when it’s thousands and thousands of the buggers. With only the teeniest of variations to make them ‘individual’.

It’s not sour grapes. I know how to create rounded corners and make drop shadows and gradients. I try to keep up with CSS, but I’m no expert and it’s only a hobby. I’m not an artistic person, definitely not a graphic designer, and am more into the challenge of laying things out rather than making them pretty with whiz-bang illustrations. Although I do wish I did have some artistic sensibilities. I know what I like. I like minimal lines and borders, not too many corners (rounded or angled — hmm, that gives me an idea, though), and not too much orange. And white space. I really like white space.

Disclaimer: this has nothing to do with the technology nicknamed Web 2.0. I like the technology. It got me named Time’s Person of the Year.

It really doesn’t matter what I do

I have a hypothesis, of sorts. For the last three weeks, the train into Glasgow has been consistently so late on a Tuesday that I miss my connection to work. I’m not sure what causes it, there must be some sort of unusual phenomena that cause it, as the train has been much more punctual on other weekdays (excepting weather conditions). Could it be…

  • … conscientious train drivers have powered through the Monday blues and are suffering the effects the next day?
  • … there is some guilt about taking a duvet day on Tuesday?
  • … the train driver’s horoscope for Tuesday said he had to wait longer at each station to get good karma points in order to get laid?
  • … curry suppers for the driver on Monday night and thus the need to make an extra long trip to the loo the following morning?

Your suggestions, please.

Second man arrested over Suffolk murders

Hm. These crimes don’t seem like the responsibility of a folie à deux (again with my speculations), so I wonder if either of them are guilty. As Neil remarked this morning, even if Tom Stephens turns out to be innocent, some people may believe the contrary.

It’s actually rather freaky

There’s a programme on BBC Two right now called The Choir. It’s about a classical choirmaster taking on a school that has never had a choir, and training a group to compete in the World Choir Games that were held this year.

It’s completely freaky since the World Choir Games were held in Xiamen, and my magazine was the official guide book for the games. I almost feel like I have to focus my camera on the television screen and wait and hope to catch a glimpse of my magazine lying around on a table or something.

I’ve heard that there is an editorial in a later issue of the magazine saying that I left Xiamen suddenly. The impression I got was they are accusing me, behind my back, of leaving them high and dry. I didn’t. I got pissed off with the Chinese publishers because I spent my own money on research in China — as I always did — and did most of the writing and all of the editing from Singapore and they were, as usual, dragging their feet on actually getting it published. All this work for an issue I would never see. So I told them they could use the stories I wrote and edited, and to leave me out of it from then on.

No sight of my last What’s On Xiamen on the programme. Ah well! Hehe. Neil thinks the conductor, Gareth Malone, is a poof for crying at the end. I disagree. I’m sure it was an incredibly stressful experience, and when it was over, he did need to let it out.