24 May 2007

What's up with the Lib Dems?

Rejection after rejection. Have the Lib Dems lost their way? Or are they forging a new identity for themselves? One that doesn't tar them with the same brush of failure as their last two ineffectual coalitions?

A revolutionary speaks

Your starter question for 10

What should LFC do next?

We must spend big, says Benitez.

Behh! Wrong answer. You should be spending wisely on young talent, who you can later flog off to the highest bidder.

23 May 2007

Reds? What reds? Do we care anymore?

So, I don't really care that much anymore1, but enough to look for some coverage that doesn't involve having to refresh the BBC or Guardian pages every few minutes. Now, we can't get Five Live over the internet (outside the UK) when they have live commentary because of the whole licence fee issue. For previous events, like the Six Nations, we've managed to get round it by listening to the relevant local station (like Radio Scotland, Wales or NI). This time, a quick try of Radio Merseyside was unsuccessful. That loophole has been closed. :(

But without meaning to spoil the field for the future, I've found radio coverage! I'm not telling you where... Keeping shtum.

1 I am still interested. I may not care either way regarding the results, but I still want to follow good fitba.

2 just as well we follow Scotland then, eh?


LFC in Athens? If I cared anymore, I would be excited. But since their ill-advised purchase on the back of a loan, which they will have to service forevermore or collapse, my interest has waned. Once upon a time, I would have downed tools just to watch the game. Then again, the game would have been at a reasonable hour and not in the middle of my work day. And back in the day, LFC's stablemates wouldn't have been a NHL team.

Right now, without a TV and bereft of Five Live, we get all the footie highlights we need from youtube. And I must confess that I really don't miss it all that much. It's gotten stale for me. It's not so exciting when you already know the score1. And the last World Cup really killed it for us. What joy in watching a game where cheats and actors flourish? And apart from the tawdry purchase of LFC, Benitez has turned a team full of potential2 into a collection of talentless oafs who play uninspired football. In fact, they may as well play American football because I just don't care anymore.

I find myself these days spending more time discussing the woes of Gretna Green and their struggle to comply with the SPL mafia than discussing the glorification of Liverpool. P goes through phases of being dejected by Dundee United's lack of spark, but he remains loyal. Is that the mark of a true fan? A local fan? Did I choose my team badly, not having lived in Liverpool? Does it count that they were the first team to inspire my interest in football? What does it all mean when you stop caring about your team, even if they are about to play in their second Champions League final in 2 years? Am I a bad fan? My blades no longer turn for my team.

What do you call an anti-glory seeker? 'Cos that's what I want to be.

1 Which is almost always the case here, always waking up after the weekend games are over.

2 I am, of course, somewhat biased.

22 May 2007

Step right up; predict a promoter and win...

Win what? Well, nothing more than a few months of hard work, hopefully followed by a nice wee paper...

We're in the mood for science on akatsuki talks rot. Perhaps this has come about since I've acknowledged that I will always be a mediocre blogger, but I could become a better science communicator if I practice writing about things I work on more. And all that stuff about the bloody Viagra-jet lag story (and the media coverage of it) made me realise there is a middle-ground for scientists in the know to discuss hot topics without resorting to the extremes of technobabble (which we're used to applying in our daily work) nor the overly condensed data-free reportage by the media.1

I've toyed with the thought of using this blog to practice writing mini-reviews of interesting published scientific studies, but have been to lazy to date. This may continue, or it may not. But given that nobody actually reads this crap, it doesn't matter. (Hi P! You still reading this surreptitiously? I have a site counter, you know...)

At any rate, since my laptops have a tendency to die after a few years, and I'm not very good at backing up non-essential data, here follows an email I spent a good 15-20 minutes on this evening to a colleague. I think I was being Ms Good Postdoc, but I often fear that I don't give good advice. Time will tell.

The premise: a friend of a colleague needed a starting point for a promoter assay s/he is planning.

My reply to the request, slightly edited:

Hi [colleague],
There are several approaches to finding the promoter of a gene. The first would be to do a quick literature search to see if anyone has already determined the components of that gene's promoter.
If not, the second approach would be to retrieve the gene information from a genomic database (like Ensembl or the UCSC genome browser). These two sites are particularly useful because they allow very quick and easy comparisons across species (e.g. human/mouse/rat/fish). Such comparisons often show what sequence is most conserved: usually the exons and any regulatory elements that are essential (like promoter elements). This only works some of the time and will only highlight very conserved regions. There will be species-specific differences in promoter sequence.
The third, slightly more laborious approach, is to take several kilobases of sequence upstream of the first known exon and perform a promoter prediction. This has become relatively easy on the internet. A quick Google search found these possibilities.
Of course, the difficulty is in choosing one. I cannot recommend one over the other because I haven't tested them myself. There is one particular site I know of that is quite easy to use: Promoter 2 prediction. It looks for known promoter motifs based on already studied PolII promoters.
After that, your friend will have to make the decision of how much of the promoter to clone, and how many different construct lengths he/she wants to try. I guess it will also depend on the restriction sites available in the sequence and how big the sequence is.
As for getting the DNA, it can either be cloned by PCR if it's very small (around 10kb), or it can be "cut" out of a BAC (bacterial artificial chromosome) or PAC or cosmid (large-capacity plasmid) that already contains the genomic region (can be bought from places like the BAC/PAC resource or Invitrogen or Roswell depending on species). The restriction digest method is preferred because it will have no additional errors, and it is also easier to change the length of the promoter region by choosing different restriction enzymes. Some people even use the entire BAC and make small deletions to eliminate predicted regulatory elements.
I hope this is will be helpful in getting your friend started. The real difficulty will be making the construct and testing it; I wish your friend the very best of luck with this!

After sending it, I read what I wrote2 and thought: goddamit, it's all too simplistic. They probably already know all this crap and were probably looking for something concrete. Like a real protocol. Unfortunately, for this and quite a lot of the other molecular biology I do, I do it on the hoof. At some point in the last 10 years, I followed somebody else's protocol (usually the postgrad/postdoc/technician I was asking advice from at the time). Then found alternatives, some of which I now use routinely, some of which I was too lazy to follow-up. Then I switched specialities. Twice. Now, I am used as a mol bio repository by my (ex-)lab. They sometimes even think of me as an expert. But a real expert wouldn't feel so fraudulent in giving advice, would she? Self-doubt creeps in... Oh what if I've screwed up somebody's project giving bad advice?

1 I'm in no way implying real media gets it wrong (although some, like the gawd-awful Daily Mail, get it wrong and deliberately so!); just that they make the assumption that folk just want the headlines. Which may be true. But not this particular folk or her ilk.

2 And after writing this post, I read it and thought: WTH? Why can't you stay on topic? I give up. It's time for dinner.

No sex to have babies? We all want some of that!1

While I'm in a mini talk-about-science mode, have a look at the female hammerhead who didn't need a male (Is anyone else bothered by the way these news articles never provide a link to the scientific article being quoted? I've had a cursory look at Biology Letters and can't find it. This bugs me because I can't accept it on the word of a journalist; I need to see the data. And I'll forget by tomorrow to have a look for the published article again.)

Parthenogenesis, the somewhat sci-fi process of asexual reproduction, even in vertebrates doesn't particularly surprise me2. What does surprise me is that they didn't ask DTB for a quote3...

1 Or is it the other way round?

2 But it makes me think again of why we (as in the generic we) evolved to require sexual reproduction, why parthogenesis doesn't happen more often, and what have those "Red Queen" proponents been up?

3 For P's benefit...

Viagra enhances... jet-lag recovery

BBC picks up on the hot jet-lag study of the day: Sildenafil accelerates reentrainment of circadian rhythms after advancing light schedules, PNAS U S A, 2007.

Some initial thoughts:

  • It's not so much that Viagra, saviour of many a marriage, is the new wonder-drug that will eradicate jet-lag a la melatonin, but that it works via a pathway already known to have an effect on jet-lag.
  • Viagra works through the NO/cGMP/PKG signalling pathway (explanations may follow if I can be bothered)
  • At least one component of this pathway, protein kinase G (PKG), has previously been shown to modulate the "speed" of reentrainment1 (aka switch to new timezone). Update: The same group has shown the involvement of the pathway in phase shifts before too, but I was being lazy earlier.
  • Work has probably already been done on this, but this is a nice example of the difference between phase advance (flying east) and phase delay (flying west) mechanisms. (Sildenafil appears to shorten the time it takes to adapt to flying east)
  • Does the media have someone sit by PubMed and trawl through it for interesting stories2?
  • Why can't I think of cool experiments like this?3

Maybe more on this later. While the world gets excited by yet another use of the blue pill, I still have to ask people for money to fund my somewhat less titillating work. Hmm... Maybe I can incorporate this into my grant application. But somehow, I think jumping on the bandwagon will not go down so well. If only I could think of a clever selling ploy to convince reviewers of the importance of my work4.

1 This is just one of many examples; I'm too lazy to dig them all up right now.

2 For interesting, read: involving sex, drugs and rock and roll. Titillation galore!

3 Well, the thought struck me when I read a colleague's paper on our common model and he mentioned how Viagra worked via the same pathway as the molecule we work on. But I didn't act on it because... I am not as inspired as these clever folk down South.

4 It's perhaps not commonly known (or rather, I didn't know this when I was a lot younger and a lot more naive) that scientists also have to be good salespersons. It's obvious once you get to the post-graduate level (or before if you're somewhat less cossetted), but the more I get into this, the more I wonder about whether the amount of bullshitting that is done is actually detrimental to the science (even though it is currently the default; no bullshit, no funding). But this mini-rant deserves a full post at some point. Not now. Not until I've finished prostituting my work.

18 May 2007

Build him up, tear him down

Amongst the acres of hagiography written about our departing Prime Minister a number of glaring inconsistencies leap out...
Blair leaves at a time not of his choosing - an even more detested in Britain than his mentor Margaret Thatcher—officially the most hated prime minister in recent history.
--Gus of 1820.org.uk


16 May 2007

blame your choice of holidays

...on some new religion that he found
they didn't know his faith was earthly bound
--Mika, Billy Brown|Life in Cartoon

is it wrong to really like such a frivolous album? the mood and melodies may seem frivolous, but the lyrics belie the deep wounds the writer must have borne at some time.

i love the vocal acrobatics, the use of many many voices. but honestly, there are only 2-3 songs that make it out of the album and onto the ipod.

Say goodbye to the world you thought you lived in

It's all in the hands of a bitter, bitter man.
--Mika, Life in Cartoon

Pretty much sums up the state of affairs.

Salmond Victorious

Alex Ferguson2 leaves Man Utd

And beats Margo Macdonald by a landslide to secure the job of Presiding Officer.1

1 I know. I'm two days too late. My mind is temporally disengaged anyway. When are those Scottish elections starting?

2 And the names are not even spelled the same. Sorry. Barrel bottom scraped, scoured, scrubbed and white-washed.

I didn't know squirrels could drive cars

Contrary to popular belief, the electric car is not dead. And "tree-huggers" are the new target market for a 40 km/h battery-powered vehicle. According to the makers of Zenn:

"The existing market in the states is predominantly gated communities or master-plan communities in the southern states. So that's typically a 65-year-old plus person who uses this as perhaps their third or fourth vehicle."

Um. Third or fourth vehicle? What are vehicles one, two and maybe three for then? And what's wrong with walking?

Admittedly, the Zenn-man goes on to describe his future market of younger people looking for an occasional car. But I was already outraged by that point. Third or fourth car... I'm already feeling guilty for using one.

14 May 2007

No enzymes here unless you want enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays

Can anyone tell me what the hell an akatsuki enzyme is and why it keeps popping up in my keyword search1? Is this predicting the day that I discover a new enzyme and egotistically name it after myself? Or is it some crappy New Age bullshit treatment2? You will be sorely disappointed if you're here for that. If anything, I should be joining Ben Goldacre in rubbishing these pseudo-science pieces of crap that purport to make people's lives better when all they do is make them poorer.

1 Statwhore admission: once in a while, I look to see if anyone from an interesting country has stumbled onto my insignificant spot on the www. And I was slightly surprised to find a Kiribati ISP in the collection this week. Hello. I hope I wasn't overly offensive with that silly off-the-cuff remark about coconut oil. And how are the Atollettes?

2 For the record, I enjoy the occasional reflexology massage. I don't buy into any of the claims of direct linkage of my big toe to my brain, ok? It's just a damn foot massage. It feels nice when you've spent the whole day standing while doing experiments to go home and massage your foot. Or hire someone to do it for you. There are no other significant health benefits.

Squint to see Johnny Marr's scowl

13 May 2007

Fuel for thought

Two recent reports pour a fair amount of cold water on the biofuels issue. If you recall, I'm not convinced they are the answer to long-term sustainability, but can have some temporary benefits while the search for a solution to the two-fold problem of oil shortage and global warming continues. The first, published by the UN, starts by acknowledging the necessity of ending reliance on oil for energy needs, particularly in developing nations. But a sharp warning on the dangers of monopoly, further environmental damage in the rush to procure more agricultural land, water demands quickly emerges. Rather a dampener on proceedings. The second report was commissioned by the Co-operative insurance society (an online copy of which I've yet to look for) seems to be in general agreement, judging by the BBC article.

They make good points to ruminate on. Perhaps after Manic May is over.

10 May 2007

Coconut Cars

The story on cars fueld by coconut oil on an island in Papua New Guinea sparked a lively conversation in our household about the various alternative fuels on trial all over the world. Coconut oil sounds like the perfect sort of island-based fuel that seems to make environmental sense. Apart from the lower concentration of sulphur dioxides, nitric oxides and general soot, not having diesel delivered to the island by diesel-burning ships also makes sense (apart from the fact that the ships are still necessary for trade and transport). While coconuts are probably not in as plentiful supply on tropical islands as us continental types would like to think, they do have more coconuts than they can use in terms of juice, meat, soap and cooking oil. This begs the question of just how many coconuts one would have to gather to fuel a moderately low mpg vehicle. And just how much energy is expended on processing the coconuts? Can the processing plants be run on coconut oil too? Can electricity generators be adapted to use it? How long does processed coconut oil last (the cooking stuff tends to ming after a while if not properly stored)? What nasty additives have to go into the mix to get it to burn nicely in infernal combustion engines?

And all these questions got me to thinking just how negative we were being. True, as part of our job, we think critically: always looking for flaws in the data or hypotheses, poking around to ensure data is not misinterpreted, second guessing. All without meaning to be cynical. Just careful.

And it also got me thinking of how news of alternative fuel is always met with a few "so what?"s from the commentators. They have a point: there is absolutely no way that the USA could ever grow enough corn to fuel all their cars with ethanol1; no way that every little Pacific island could be completely self-sufficient on coconuts for oil; no way that Asda's recycling of cooking fat in their trucks could inspire every householder in the UK to rob their local chippy. But they also miss the point that every small number of converts means that the trend for increasing oil-driven energy consumption is ever so slightly diminished. Every solar panel installed, every wind turbine that gets past the "Conservative Communities Concerned for Conservation of their Beautiful and Historical Landscape", every wave harvester makes a difference, however small. Slowly, one small appliance2 at a time, we can slow down the growth of energy consumption. It's accurate to point out that demand for energy is still growing. The alternative energy sources will not fix that problem. That is up to individuals and governments to tackle. It may hurt attempts to invest in alternative energy if we keep lumping them together. For it to work, it must be economically viable, even if the early stages are heavily funded by rich governments.

It also seems fairly obvious to a numpty like myself that it is to the interest of growing super-powers to invest heavily in research in this area now. Countries like China and India already have enormous energy demands, which will no doubt increase. Peak oil may be upon us (although it is still heavily debated, but let's not go into that now). Unless China and India (and any other super-power I don't have the precogniscent ability to see) have ever-lasting supplies of coal or oil, or can twist OPEC's arm, they will need to not just use current alternative energy sources, but drive the development of new ones. Which they probably are already doing (apart from nuclear power, that is; but let's not get into that now either).

This didn't start out as a rant, though it has turned fairly incoherent. I guess my point was that it is easy to be a nay-sayer when it comes to the real benefits of alternative energy sources, be they fuel for vehicles or to provide electricity to needy bloggers. But as the hegemon known as Tesco likes to say, every little helps.

Incidentally, this news comes as I've finished reading a recent LA Times Book Festival purchase: The Sex Lives of Cannibals, by J. Maarten Troost3. I wonder if the inhabitants of Kiribati (pronounced Kikibas4, according to Troost) have the technological ability or drive to consider adopting coconut oil as a fuel? Or failing which, export their copra to their Pacific neighbours in exchange for some food that is not fish.

1 Speaking of which, doesn't the harvesting, transport and processing of the corn crop suck up a whole lot of energy in itself? Oh me oh my, how easy it is to be cynical.

2 e.g. the iPod. Oh, we're back on the greenness of Apple again are we? Incidentally, this reminds me that I desperately wanted a Solio before I left for LA because I thought there would be enough sunshine here for it to work. But they were out of stock then. Would it be naughty to buy one now and have it shipped here? Even more naughty than charging the iPod on the mains every other night?

3 And speaking of the book, this gives me an opportunity to have a photo in the post. Haven't you missed my awful photography?

Book haul

4 Typo: should be Ki-ri-bas. Thanks David. My fingers must have had the dog's nickname (kiki) programmed in instead.

Apple is not exactly a Granny Smith

How is Apple so low on the Greenometer with all those hazardous chemicals that Steve Jobs claims they've eliminated or are in the process of phasing out? Based on no research whatsoever on my part, it sounds like Dell is planning to, but has not actually achieved the elimination of PVC and BRF:

Nokia and Dell share the top spot in the ranking. They believe that as producers they should bear individual responsibility for taking back and reusing or recycling their own-brand discarded products. Nokia leads the way on eliminating toxic chemicals, since the end of 2005 all new models of mobiles are free of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and all new components to be free of brominated flame retardants (BFRs) from the start of 2007. Dell has also set ambitious targets for eliminating these harmful substances from their products.

The specific report on Apple claims that:

For a company that claims to lead on production design, Apple scores badly on almost all criteria. The company fails to embrace the precautionary principle, withholds its full list of regulated substances and provide no timelines for eliminating toxics polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and no commitment to phasing out all uses of brominated flame retardants (BFRs). Apple performs poorly on product take back and recycling, with the exeption of reporting on the amounts of its electronic waste recycled.


Protracted proclamation

New (b)leader, new (b)liar?1 And to christen the beginning of the end, has Guardian Unlimited hired the same website designer as Times Online?2 And does this hint at some editorial change I've missed out on?

1 Contrived, I know. It's been a long day.

2Update: All these fancy pictures on the new website meant I missed the editor's explanation. Meh.

08 May 2007

Mr Moore, kindly crawl out of Uranus

Sir Patrick Moore has his knickers in a twist about women running the BBC.

I would like to see two independent wavelengths - one controlled by women, and one for us, controlled by men."
"I used to watch Doctor Who and Star Trek, but they went PC - making women commanders, that kind of thing. I stopped watching." --Sir Patrick Moore

07 May 2007

Deafened by Bright Eyes

Green up my Mac

Is this merely Apple patting itself on the back or a genuine effort to lessen the environmental impact of their products? Aside from the lower use of toxic materials (which is to be applauded), Steve Jobs claims that Apple recycled 13 million pounds of "ewaste" last year (9.5% of the weight of product sold 7 years ago) and plans to improve on it. It raises the question of what the 13 million pounds refers to: starting weight of the products or actual weight of suitably reused/recycled material? This comparison suggests the 13 million refers to total product weight and not weight of material recycled. (Actually, while I'm wondering out loud about the validity of the comparison, how about making the products last longer so there's less frequent turnover? Ah... It doesn't make business sense, that's why...)

Anyway, it's an effort to be encouraged and not to put down too much. Perhaps this little piece of PR will encourage the other major computer manufacturers to put some of this in practice themselves (unless they already do, but just haven't come out and said so). I wonder if there are smaller manufacturers out there who are already making greener machines but just not shouting loud enough for a deaf person like me to hear (whatever happened to that $100 laptop project, and will they be recycling the end-of-life products too?).

And speaking of recycling, back to Apple's announcement of their greenhood. If you are one of the many people hanging on to a defunct 2G or 3G iPod with a failed battery, perhaps this 10%-off-future-purchase-unless-you've-already-given-up-and-switched-to-a-Zune offer will appeal:

Let me take a moment to talk specifically about iPods, even though they are included in the above data. All of Apple’s U.S. retail stores, which now number more than 150, take back unwanted iPods for environmentally friendly disposal free of charge. As an incentive, we even offer customers a 10% discount on a new iPod when they bring their old iPod to our stores for proper disposal. This summer we’re expanding it to Apple retail stores worldwide, and we’re also extending it to include free shipping from anywhere in the U.S. No product purchases are required for any of our free take back programs. In a few months, we think we’ll have ‘best of breed’ iPod recycling programs in the U.S., and we plan to continue to expand our free iPod recycling programs globally in the future.

Incidentally, over at treehugger.com, they're promoting an energy-saving alternative google search page, which is not green in the sense of the colour spectrum. Unfortunately, going by the stream of comments at the end of the post, it sounds like this is only useful for CRT monitors and will make no perceptible energy savings on LCD screens. I wonder if lower page load times on the more popular sites (like the Beeb's news page) would help save energy. Or browsing via RSS feeds instead. Or blogging less. That last one I can definitely do.

Disclaimer: I currently love Apple products and own a Powerbook, 3 iPods (don't ask... I'm not as green as I'd like to be), 1 AirTunes router and a small smattering of accessories. So I might be considered somewhat biased.

Travail, toi Fran├žais!

Presumably, the French ballots were a lot simpler and this autocrat is exactly what France wants. Ah well, there goes my hope of the 35-hour work week spreading globally...

Scottish Presider

Oh, the Scottish Elections have descended into the realms of the farcical. The ramifications of the huge SNP gain, small party losses and Labour/Lib Dem backlash is that the one party that could not get even one seat in the first Holyrood elections may now preside over its proceedings. (via)

More votes for Scots

"Either we re-run the election or the returning officer contacts these 10,000 people who had their ballot treated as spoiled to ascertain their actual preference. "We need to do that, otherwise democracy is in crisis in Scotland." (via)

Sure. And open the process to bribery of said 10,000 people? I think not.

If there was a re-election, perhaps folk will finally cast their TRUE vote. Methinks that in the future, Scotland should hold practice runs.

05 May 2007

I am one monkey in a billion1

I am a self-confessed billion monkey* (via). Even worse, I am a billion monkey who snaps her monkey nuts before she eats them. See the other very crappy results of my billion monkey machine here.

Incidentally, I know a Real PhotographerTM who enjoys a spot of self photo-ing.

1That means there are 6 more of me on this planet; if one of you reads this, get in touch. Starting to feel like I've been spread too thin.

04 May 2007

Gaelic word for the day

Scottish (Muckadidoodah) Elections 2007

What a dickadeedoodah the elections have been this year! I've missed out on all the fun. Followed doctorvee's twittering and subsequent indignation at the mess made by the decision makers:

Some people wonder what the Scotland Office is for these days. Obviously they are looking for stuff to do, so have been busybodying with this e-counting stuff. The e-counting systems might have been desirable for the local councils, but they did not need to be used for the Scottish Parliament elections.

I was feeling a small amount of sympathy for the poor electorate, expected to cope with oh-so-many ballot papers, until I saw a photo of the ballot sheet (or rather a photo of the poster explaining the ballot sheet). Honestly, it's not that difficult.* Maybe they could have hired some expensive design agency to make the parliament ballot a little clearer (maybe some dozy-brains didn't register the split arrow), but that poster is education enough not to screw up.If you've made the effort to go out and vote, surely you're invested enough in the process to make the even smaller effort to read the instructions. I don't think the blame can be laid on the Westminster or Scottish Parliaments (maybe apart from the decision to have both local and Holyrood elections on the same day). More and earlier voter education? Maybe not. A redesign of the ballot sheets? Ach, I hope they're going to have a good look at the spoiled ballots and work out what went wrong or there's no point in suffrage and we'll have to start testing voters for mental competency before elections.** Ha.

*I would be interested to learn how many of those were true protest votes or if anyone scribbled stuff like "anyone but labour" or crap like that. Don't waste your vote, dammit. At least vote for some small crappy party if you don't like the major ones.

**Disclaimer. Joking, OK? Not proposing this or calling the electorate stupid. Maybe a little bit lazy or dozy or confused, but not stupid. I pretty much agree with what was said here.

Mair on the sorry tale. I like this interpretation :

Electoral systems suffer the same problems as bad software - they are dominated by geeks with no understanding that users have to be able to understand the system you are designing and bolt on a shoddy interface as an afterthought - and by marketing departments/politicians who have a very different agenda from the rest of the industry and force bad design decisions from the word go. (via)

The revelation that the Scotland Office were advised not to hold both elections on the same day is no surprise to me. A department controlled by a party that started its first few years in government spinning and managing the media will take any little advantage they can get to stay in power. Another example of disgusting NuLab behaviour.

(Needs), Wants and Desires

Ach, I have to contend with so many other folks' wants and desires everyday, but no one ever asks what I want. Well, right now, if anyone is paying any attention (hint, hint, P; if you don't listen over brekkie, at least read the blog) I am deeply in love with this glorious type-set map of London (via). If they cannot/will not ship the US, perhaps my ever-loving bro will send it to me via Parcelforce (hint, hint, bro; if you don't reply to my emails, at least read the stupid food blog).

03 May 2007

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

The Sith Lord does not entertain interruptions (via, which was via).

Dogs for all

I can sympathise. It is inevitable when you meet a dog that suits you that you will end up adopting it.

Apaprently, I walk too fast and it's bad for me. Since Singapore tops the table, that's not entirely surprising.