Sunday, December 20, 2009

White Elephant

Each year my office does a white elephant gift exchange, where participants contribute a gift that is purchased (rarely) or just randomly grabbed out of their closet/attic/desk.

Everyone pulls a number and then gifts are chosen by order of the numbers. Starting with numbers 2 and higher you can either grab a new unopened gift from the pile or steal one that an earlier participant has opened (they in turn either steal from someone else or grab a new gift).

My contribution this year was a child leash purchased at the Dinosaurland gift shop. I am an impulse buyer and it was up at the counter along with candy dinos and maps. I came home with all three. Sadly, I left the How to make Wizard Stencils book behind.

My first pick was a nice looking gift bag with the word "Lucky" on it. How can you resist that, right? Besides, it was heavy and heavy is good. When I opened it up, I found that it contained at least 30 DVDs that I never want to watch...the remake of Dukes of Hazzard, some random Billy Bob Thorton movie, Must love dogs ect. SCORE!

Unfortunately, somehow jacked my stash and I lost 30 DVDs I would never want to watch and ended up with a single DVD that I simply can't watch (as it is a copy of the Hulk on the now defunct HD DVD format).


As an added bonus of awesomeness, the bag also included random office knick knacks of former co-workers who have been sacked over the last 12 months...our old Admin's Paper Weight, another colleagues clock they received for putting someone in an old folks home and the piece de resistance, the bag itself.

At first glance, it appears to be a standard holiday gift back, but, upon close examination, one phrase is not quite right. See if you can pick it out from the following...

Merry Christmas
Happy Holidays
Jingle bells
Peace of Earth

Peace of Earth? What the hell is that?

Did the guy from ELF do the QC check on that before sending off to the printer?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


No sooner did I mention the cause of the lack of posting, then did I stumble across a proper idea for a post, which was born of a fairly innocuous FB post mentioning the impact of watching Food INC.

First as a primer to my latest thesis, a quick recap of Food INC... Corn is the root of all evil.

Ok, there is a bit more than that.

Essentially what starts off with very noble intentions, how can we improve upon our farming practices so they impact the environment less, and produce a greater quantity of food at a lower price? wanders into some creepy territory not that foreign from a Michael Crichton novel... GMO's using natural pollination in conjunction with their proprietary genetically modified seeds to claim farmers who did not buy their seed to owe them seed rights (i.e. scrilla, loot, dough, benjamins) through a twisted version of eminent domain blended against other scary tales of altering the natural diets of animals to include things mother nature never intended them to eat (and thus having riveting impacts on their bodies) and dipping a toe in what really goes into processing our food (and you thought making sausage was bad!).

Being the sharp minded critical thinkers that you are, you have most likely deduced to two primary opposing arguments likely to emerge as a result of this film...

Smith sez: We need to leverage science to do more with less in order to meet the ever increasing demand for food, no matter how frankensteinian the means are. If food supplies are scarce, how can we afford to feed the masses?

Jones sez: We are what we eat and as such need to stop subsidizing unhealthy foods (why is it cheaper to eat an extra value meal than to buy ingredients for a fresh salad?) and start supporting local, organic, natural food supplies.

So after some back and forth commenting on the original post, I volleyed my strategic masterpiece...which I christened "ZombiEconomics."

Apparently the idea of Zombie-economics is not new (as demonstrated by a quick google search).

HOWEVER it is about to get a make over, topic15 style.

In the past, it referred to mindless politics, ignorant of the conditions which lead to the present (and thus creating a susceptibility to recreate them in the future, or as the old adage goes, those who don't know the past are bound to recreate it).

So, you are probably thinking, Zombies are cool. Economics aren't cool, but are necessary, what's the deal with the Topic15 Remix of these two concepts?

The fundamental basis of Zombieconomics is as simple as it is the poor.

The power of this tenet is twofold, as being a relative term, we are virtually guaranteed never to run out of a food source, likewise it will have the benefit of pushing capitalism to the most obscene boundaries through an unprecedented culture of fear.

It is a veritable mash-up of Darwin and Weber! Survival of the fittest means survival of those who work hard and accumulate wealth (which is not a function of a direct desire to be wealthy, but rather as an unintended consequence associated with a desire not to be eaten, very much in line the Protestant world of not being saved).

I still need to flesh out the concept, but think I might have a dissertation on my hands, should I ever return to the world of academia, which I won't... as that means giving up my $$$$ making job and in turn giving me a front of the line pass to the TBE (to be eaten) queue should my theory ever pan out.

Outsource Outsource Outsource is the new Ho Ho Ho

I made a snarky remark about outsourcing Christmas cards only to discover 1 google search later that my idea is reality.

PS...One day I will get back to blogging regularly, just as soon as I start cultivating proper fodder of Topic15's standard.

Boondock Saint's 2 took 10 years, you just can't rush quality!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009