The Null Device
In the Ukraine, cars with certain number plates are exempt from road laws. These are normally given to the ruling elite (naturally) and police, though they can be yours for a price:
KM gives you total immunity, EO works only in the east and 777 looks cool but doesn't really mean anything.
This reminds me of the situation in the Soviet Union, where, apparently, the Communist Party nomenklatura had a wealth of privileges, including special reserved lanes on the motorways, a special phone system (which worked better than the one the ordinary plebs got) and even a private underground railway in Moscow.
I'm Wayne Kerr, and if there's one thing I hate... it's web sites which sacrifice usability to be "arty". Such as the ACMI site. I went to book a ticket to one of the Cremaster screenings, but there's no indication of where the box office is; the only links are lower-case verbs like "experience", "learn", "play" and so on. Ooh, tres artistique! Now about that ticket I wanted to buy...
And now, a few topical stories for today's Hallmark Event:
- The latest plague in the dating ecosystem is the "Whimpster"; which seems to be like a cross between a metrosexual and a pathologically insecure emo boi:
Simply put: He is male. He is white. He is wimpy. He looks a little bit emo, a little bit hipster, and he's more dangerous than you'd think. So, the next time you wake up next to someone whispering acrimonious nothings about his ex-girlfriend instead of going down on you, you'll know a little more about this seemingly gentle boy you went home with. This is the 'dark side' of Lloyd Dobler, of our precious Duckie, and life with him is much different after the credits roll. Whimpsters are men who use cultural artifacts and politically correct platitudes in place of the empty spaces where real thought and emotion should be. Whimpsters are men who unwittingly enjoy Bukowski's misogyny. Whimpsters walk a tenuous tightrope between their secreted, terribly warped masculinity and the mainstream manliness that they claim to abhor.
(I wonder what happens when a whimpster meets a quirkyalone.)
- If you have the fortune to be non-heterosexual, there are now lots of things you can call yourself, from traditional words like "gay" and "lesbian" to niche genders like "boydyke", "genderqueer" and "boi" (which, here, doesn't mean "masculine specimen of alternative yoof subculture") (via FmH)
- A US psychologist has devised a mathematical model that can predict divorce with 94% accuracy, by studying videotapes of arguments within couples and analysing modes of interaction and physiological data to get "bitterness ratings".