As for that post I said I was going to put up about English spelling, well, it’s still in the pipeline. It has been on the backburner for several months though, and I may have to rewrite it from scratch.
I can hardly believe it! This blog has now been in existence for an entire year! This is also the third anniversary of the release of Portal 2 (at least in this time zone), another fact which some of you may find scarcely credible.
What a year it’s been. Proof finally emerged that the US government was spying on everyone and, well… Rather little has been done about it! Oh well… We also observed the anniversaries of two great television programmes, Animaniacs and Frasier.
In terms of activity on this blog and the building in which it is hosted, the Subatomic Particle Simulator was conceptualised, developed and published in the course of the last year. Also, YouTube saw the upload of three animated histories of Sony Pictures Television (with a fourth coming in the next few days).
All in all, I’m quite satisfied with what has graced this blog in the preceding twelve months, and I hope that the next twelve will be just as fruitful!
P.S. Once again, I was considering naming this post “Happy Explosion Day!”, but even one year on, I couldn’t be sure whether or not that would be PC, so I’m erring on the side of caution.
On the subject of Portal 2, to clarify the issue from yesterday’s post, it seems that the GNU/Linux beta has been around for two months. Once again, I apologise profusely for not observing this earlier on. However, work on Sony Pictures Television History Mark IV has taken precedence anyway, so Aperture Ireland’s state probably wouldn’t be any different even if I had been aware.
It recently came to my attention that Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn likened the Junior Certificate to a “sausage squeezing machine”, “squeezing creativity and curiosity out of the classroom”. [Source: Limerick Leader] So, all of my friends and I have apparently been squeezed through this unmerciful sausage factory in recent years. I can’t really say that I agree with that assessment. Let’s look at some other things worthy of the title of “sausage factory”:
I found out in the last few weeks that the old MCA television production company, Revue (later Universal), was often derided as a “sausage factory”. In all of its television shows, thanks to the regimented formula-driven production management of Lew Wasserman, it basically churned out one hour of the same thing every week, over and over again. Indeed, this prompted an FCC investigation in the late ’50s, into the reasons for the overall poor quality of American television programming. [Source: When Hollywood Had a King]
The Revue Logo
Having watched many episodes of Murder, She Wrote, I can only agree with this assessment of the studio, even though this programme is from the ’80s! In every episode, Mrs. Fletcher gets introduced to a scenario and meets a few people, then after about half an hour someone’s body is found. After that, Mrs. Fletcher collaborates with whatever authorities are involved. She has a sudden stroke of genius towards the end, then confronts the murderer with some ridiculously elaborate story. In many episodes, the murderer finally admits culpability and draws a gun, only to have the sheriff, or whoever, run in and save Mrs. Fletcher. After that, everyone is happy, then some silly joke is made, and we get a freeze-frame of Mrs. Fletcher laughing, then the credits roll!
There’s also the matter of the Scooby-Doo sausage factory. They tried to do new things with the franchise over the last forty-odd years. I was very impressed with the most recent Mystery Incorporated series. Personally, I think they should leave it at that – any more could only go down the old sausage-factory route and ruin a good thing. Besides, there are still the formulaic direct-to-video animated feature-length films they’re doing.
So now, can we really place a fundamental part of our education system, which has existed for many years, on par with the forces behind the production of Murder, She Wrote, Scooby-Doo, and other mediocre television programmes? Somehow, as a student, I’m just not comfortable with that.
A very interesting piece of information was revealed on last Sunday’s episode of Derek Mooney’s “Secrets of the Irish Landscape” *. It seems that there was something of a global deluge around 2350 BC. Soil records from Ireland around this time show that farming activity stopped and tree ring records show abysmal growth for around 20 years. It is also reflected in written accounts from China and other disparate locations around the world.
The interesting bit, however, is that a Catholic bishop attempted to date the origin of the world by adding up ages of people in the Bible. In doing this, he determined that the Flood was around 2349 BC! So, the story of Noah’s Ark was rooted in fact. Who’d have thought?
This could also be used as an argument against the case that Climate Change is caused by human activity.
*This link will not work after Sunday June 2 (and may not work at all if you are outside of Ireland, but I’m not sure).
Also, I’d just like to note that Animaniacs has returned to the RTÉ 2 schedule and, in doing so, has proven that I’m not going insane. The copyright notice on RTÉ’s showings is indeed different from that on the DVD. As for why on Earth they would change it, I don’t know.