Wednesday, March 25, 2009


The Irish internet and blogging community reacted with anger today at the idea that the government would take such offense at the display of caricatures of a naked Brian Cowen that they make the state broadcaster apologize for broadcasting a story about the paintings and then send a Garda detective around to another radio station Today FM to demand they hand over emails from the artist.

Today FM, in fairness to them, stood up to the Garda and asked him to return with a warrant. RTE on the other hand caved and apologized as well as taking the story down from its web site and archives. Unfortunately for the government once something goes on the internet it's hard to stop people from keeping a copy of it.

If the government had shut up and ignored the issue then it would have just gone away. Now it's all over twitter and on blogs all over Ireland. There are even t-shirts and copies of the pictures being put up on lamp posts.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Puffin for Dinner

Watching Gordon Ramsey's F-Word on More4 while trying to set up my new laptop, more on that later I hope. He just went to Iceland to go puffin catching. The puffin is the official bird of Newfoundland, where my girlfriend comes from, so you can imagine her disgust when they pulled the heads off the puffins ripped the breast and insides out then ate the heart raw. In my youth I did go hunting rabbits but even I baulked at the idea of plucking birds out of the air, ripping their still warm hearts out and eating them on camera. On the other hand the dish he made in the end with the cooked puffin breasts did look tasty.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

3 years for shoe thrower

The Iraqi journalist Muntadar al-Zaidi who famously threw his shoes at George Bush has been jailed for three years as a result. Apparently he could have been jailed for 15 years for the crime of hitting someone with his shoes. Harsh! Seriously, what does putting him in jail for 3 years achieve? It's not likely that he will re-offend, how often does a repeat offender get the opportunity to throw their shoes at George Bush? It's more likely to generate sympathy for him and inspire others to use shoes as symbolic protests. Finally I'm sure the prison space he will fill would be far better used housing a terrorist or insurgent. I wonder if the Americans will lobby to get him released.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Just watching an old episode of CSI called Abra Cadaver where a stage magician called Zephyr is tracked down by Grissom. My girlfriend pointed out how similar the actor who played Zephyr looked to the serial killer in the movie Manhunter a movie we watched last year and which still scares her. Turns out he is the same actor Tom Noonan. But the cool thing is the actor who plays Grissom, William Petersen, was the cop in Manhunter. I wonder if they deliberately set out to get the two actors back together.

Blogger Registration

Boing Boing has a story about attempts in Italy to pass a law to have bloggers register with the government and to ban anonymous posts to the internet. Scary. We rightly criticise countries like China or Iran when they crack down on bloggers yet when a member of the EU tries to do the same thing no one is concerned?

Wednesday, March 04, 2009


I went to sleep in the Spring and woke in the Winter. I even heard people on the radio talking about cars being stuck in the snow. Snow! On Sunday I was down in Cork taking photos and thought it was too warm for the jumper I had on. Yet this morning at the bus stop I was wondering where I had put my gloves and scarf. I liked the snow last month but the novelty is wearing off and I'd like it to get warm with some sunny days again please.