Musings from Brian J. Noggle
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Researched in Advance
Given potential for inflation coupled with the way Congress is dropping hundreds of billions of dollars in borrowed money into any industry it thinks of like tourists dropping their last pocket change into the slots at the airport on the way out of Vegas, you will learn that the next order of magnitude beyond trillion is actually quadrillion.

Assuming that the Chinese and Middle Eastern royalty allow our national debt to hit that level circa 2017.

Book Report: The Aztecs by Frances F. Berdan (1989)
This is a book in a series on the Natives of the Americas. As such, it has a lot of images and glosses over the worst of the Aztec empire, providing an inspirational and mostly laudatory account of the tribe. I suppose it's not a bad primer if you're looking to write a sixth grade report, and it could probably serves as a source for that. However, given that I've already read some more complete histories, it lacks in depth or in any gap-filling knowledge. However, in my quest for endless anecdotes about how the Aztecs did it, I can talk about having read one more book about them.
Books mentioned in this review:

Book Report: Event Horizon by Steven E. McDonald (1997)
You know, I kind of knew the premise of the book. The sort of thing I like: a mystery involving a big ship and whatnot (such as Ringworld, Rendezvous with Rama, and so on). I didn't see the movie because I heard it was a bit of a gorefest in space with an ultimately weak premise.

I had some hope when the thing began; however, it hit the pivotal climax with disturbing imagery (here, recounted in word, but that's disturbing enough). The bodies start dropping, and random characters survive. The premise, of course, is that the ship has wormholed through Hell or something and it has become possessed by an intelligence that wants to kill people. A sad, weak premise, ultimately, and not up the the hopes I'd had.

But if you go into the Hyundai dealership looking for German engineering, you're bound to be disappointed, but at least you'll be disappointed cheaply.

Books mentioned in this review:

Book Report: 50 Great Horror Stories edited by John Canning (1971)
In case you're wondering, I finished this book on November 3, a day before the election. I haven't posted on it because I've had other things on my mind, such as the way the world will be to me going forward. Pardon me for the delay.

I was going to entitle this post, or at least sum it up, as encapsulating this book as 50 Horror Stories We, British Editors, Could Anthologize On The Cheap. Because for the first couple of nights wherein I read the book, that's the sense I got. Fiction, poorly written in a British horror sense. We get a couple of ghost stories, and then a treatise on lycanthropy. Were the stories supposed to be spooky, or what?

After a couple glasses of cheap liquor, though, I got into it. Well, a couple of glasses of cheap liquor and a couple of nights of reading, perhaps interspersed with more compelling fiction. But these stories combine actual events with actual recountings of ghost stories, so if you're an Angliophile, you can get into it for the flavor of the past told from the recountings. If the spirit, so to speak, moves you, you can wonder, "Did the authors present this as a piece of fiction, or are they recounting an actual event but providing spooky music?"

Thus, I ultimately enjoyed the book more than I thought I would. One has to leave behnd one's expectation of horror stories, though, particularly if you're an American reader used to a bit more spookiness in the proceedings.

Books mentioned in this review:

Friday, November 14, 2008
Go Ahead, Quote Me
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are drinking the water.

Sorry, Mr. Wilde.

Monday, November 10, 2008
Just Mailing It In
A phishing scam that sends you an e-mail form to fill on the dotted line? Sweet!
    Dear Account User This Email is from Hotmail Customer Care and we are sending it to every Hotmail Email User Accounts Owner for safety. we are having congestions due to the anonymous registration of Hotmail accounts so we are shutting down some Hotmail accounts and your account was among those to be deleted. We are sending this email to you so that you can verify and let us know if you still want to use this account. If you are still interested please confirm your account by filling the space below.Your User name, password, date of birth and your country information would be needed to verify your account.

    Due to the congestion in all Hotmail users and removal of all unused Hotmail Accounts, Hotmail would be shutting down all unused Accounts, You will have to confirm your E-mail by filling out your Login Information below after clicking the reply button, or your account will be suspended within 24 hours for security reasons.

    * Username: ...............................
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    After following the instructions in the sheet, your account will not be interrupted and will continue as normal. Thanks for your attention to this request. We apologize for any inconveniences.

    Warning!!! Account owner that refuses to update his/her account after two weeks of receiving this warning will lose his or her account permanently.

    The Windows Live Hotmail Team

    Connect to the next generation of MSN Messenger Get it now!
Bonus for including a hyperlink to a fake domain offering malware downloads instead of MSN Messenger. Demerits for absolutely abhorrent grammar and style.

To say Noggle, one first must be able to say the "Nah."