Daily Rant – Infinite Monkeys Edition – 16 April 2019

I’m quite impressed by the Internet. We live in wondrous times. The World Wide Web allows us unprecedented access to information – some of which even bears a passing resemblance to fact. On the other hand, it is also populated by pundits who could charitably be called Unhinged.

This was brought painfully home in a story that has been making the rounds during the past week. The first image of a Black Hole was published. The image was the result of the painstaking work of Katherine Bouman, a 29-year-old postdoctoral fellow at MIT who is a part of the team who worked to capture the image.

blackhole

A staggering scientific achievement given that the image is of an object which cannot be seen with normal telescopes and is 55 million light-years away in the Messier 87 galaxy. The Event Horizon Telescope (EHT) — a planet-scale array of eight ground-based radio telescopes — captured the image

Of course, this being the Internet the Trolls came out to play almost immediately.

Mysoginistic Reddit posts like one below and Twitter comments began to surface (and this is one of the more restrained):

“Notice something? Yeah, that woman wrote about 2,000 lines of code total. Another guy wrote over 850,000. Katie barely worked on the project at all until late last year, Andrew Chael worked on it relentlessly from its conception.

“If anyone deserves the credit, it’s him,” one Reddit user, SmellyTheBluCow, wrote.

Fortunately, Andrew Chael leaped to his colleague’s defense:

“If you are congratulating me because you have a sexist vendetta against Katie, please go away and reconsider your priorities in life – Andrew Chael”

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Bouman and her colleagues clarified, in no uncertain terms, that the black hole image was a team effort. In all, more than 200 scientists from all over the world worked on it.

Now I have a serious problem with these Trolls – and I would like to express some opinions on their reactions.

There is an old saw about placing an infinite number of monkeys into a locked room for an infinite amount of time (with typewriters) and the result would be the production of Shakespeare’s greatest works (The Infinite Monkey Theorem). This exercise in the exploration of Chaos Theory and infinity/Time may have some value in pigeonholing the attitudes of the darker and more basement bound of the commentators.

InfiniteMonkeys

The analogy may not work perfectly but bear with me. If you locked up those monkeys and had an infinite amount of time – and at some point in the far distant future checked on them you would witness a result that would neatly mirror the approach and end result of entertaining the Ambulatory Pieces of Excrement who find Twitter and Reddit such fertile ground.

  1. If you locked up these imbeciles (and there’s a great idea) you would not land up with the collected works of the Bard. You would end up with a full collection of Mills and Boons books and an ‘Illustrated Companion to the Shades of Grey Series.’
  2. You would also open the door to a room waist high in monkey feces.

Now there are two types of reaction when reading the comments of these Twitter attention whores.

  1. ‘WTF did I just read?’
  2. ‘He may have a point.’

If your reaction places you into the second group I have a few choice words. He doesn’t have a point. He has a statement that displays a complete lack of research and a crippling sense of self-doubt based on rock-solid misogyny.

So what do we do about these people? The answer is literally nothing. Although I am commenting on the situation here (and thus contradicting myself) – the best approach is to simply ignore them. Don’t talk about them, do not interact with them.

These are people who suffer from what I like to call ‘The Politicians Curse’. They are narcissistic in the extreme. They crave attention. It doesn’t matter if that attention is positive or negative – the fact that they have that ‘look at me’ moment is enough. Any sort of affirmation of their existence feuls their deviant world outlook.

Ignore them and they will go away – they will fall victim to another classification I use – a “Self-Correcting Problem.” This is the same category that reptile lovers fall into when they insist that ‘Burmese Pythons are misunderstood and all they need is intimacy and understanding from human beings.’ They tend to remove themselves from the Gene Pool extremely quickly.

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Starve them of attention and they disappear. They are Chernobyl Sunflowers. They will twist themselves towards the sun. It could expand and fill the sky and they would still keep facing it as they burst into flame. It’s not growth they’re looking for – it’s simple attention.

I have absolutely no doubt that within a very short time some left-wing Neo-Fascist from some American East Coast institution of higher learning will accuse me of ‘Mansplaining’ the situation   Through a mouthful of Kale and peering myopically from under a head of hair that is having its own private party, that individual will accuse me of being part of a patriarchal approach that denies women the empowering option of defending themselves.

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So, it seems to be a case of between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea. But here’s the thing – I actually could not give a mouse fart about the opinions of two or more individuals who represent the gibbering, bed soiling lunatic fringe.

Here is another of the analogies that I trot out every now and then (full of them today). Keep in mind baked goods and once again bear with me. You can take two confectionery productions, cover them with two different flavours of icing – but when you cut into them you will quickly discover that under all that interesting sugar infused goodness both are still crazy cakes. Crazy remains crazy no matter the packaging.

So just leave them be – they disappear up their own assholes at reconciliation as my departed father used to say – but they do test my psychic resilience.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Non Rant – Visit And Birthday Edition – Princess Erin

I may be a curmudgeonly old man – but there are things which melt my heart. One of those is my Princess. Although I do try her – and she me. She is not a far apple drop from the tree. She is a fierce argumentative soul – and she leaves me behind sometimes – and I am so proud.

It is a strange world full of wonder and love. I do not love very easily. But the world changed when I first saw her – all those 16 years ago. And she made me smile – in my soul. She still does.

She is my little bitch of many colours. Fierce like a Lion. She is at the same time, delicate and brittle and prone to shattering.

She makes me terrifyingly happy. She does not sometimes understand my feelings. I am so poor at expression – and I am so quick to sarcasm and dry wit that I hurt her sometimes. But I also make her laugh. And I hope the two levels of the seesaw are balanced enough to make her love me a tenth as much as I love her.

I only do words. I cannot build her a life. But I can be there – and be her wall against the terror that can be life – at least I can try.

I love you my Princess. It’s going to hurt – it’s life. But daddy will die before someone hurts you.

 

 

 

A Very UnSteve Rant – 11 April Edition.

I was on the Internet this morning and a post popped up from a man I love – let’s call him Theo (because that’s his name).

Now Theo is gay. But that really is not the point of these words. His sexuality makes not an iota of difference to me – in fact, it simply makes him even more interesting.

It made me think about him – and in fact each person I meet

Theo is a big unit. I’m not petite – hugs are big.  Each time I see him I grin. Because he has a gift. He makes people happy. And I give him a great big hug each time I meet him. Because that makes me happy.

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But a proper one. Where your chest touch – and groins – but I’m not going to think about that

He is one of two people that I would trust to look after my kids – and not ever worry. Because he is a great guy.

He is soft and hard at the same time. He thinks about others – and makes an effort to understand their point of view. He is fiercely intelligent and kind with his insights.

And he feels it when people hurt him.

I should not feel bad about it. He is more than capable of bringing to bear a fierce temper and a very big fist to the party. But I know one thing, he will hurt anyone who even looks at my kids badly – or for that fact at me.

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‘Bad Theo, BAD – NO!’ ‘But…’ ‘Bad!’ ‘OK Steve – you’re such a girl’

And it really hurts me that there are some folk out there who would point a finger at him because of his sexuality.

He is a ‘big girl’s blouse’ and I call him that because he thinks so deeply about others. He cares so much. But that is him. It is not an echo of his sexual preference. He did not ask for it. It is part of who he is.

The point that I am trying to bring across is that we need, as a society, need to try and understand others.

This not a practice round. We do not have the luxury of ‘another go’. Simply think about how you interact with others.

People are delicate. I deal in words and they can be like knives. I know that I can be terrible – in the words of a good friend ‘don’t argue with Steve – you’ll end up in tears’.

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But – as I have matured it makes more and more sense to try not to hurt. I really think before I interact with others.

It is not only words – it is thoughts and deads. I write because I love to do it. I love to make words bring a smile to others – or make them think. There is no malice involved.

It is easy to hurt. Don’t do it.

Wow. A screed of gentle reprimand. How very unlike me – unless you know me.

Customer Service – Africa Style Edition. April 10 2019

I’m not usually terribly depressed about this country. However, today was a bit trying.

The levels of customer service in South Africa are truly awful. We have a country where business relies on automated responses to inquiries as a way of deflecting customer service problems.

It is insane that every time you want to talk to someone you spend an hour waiting listening to terrible music that sounds as if it is part of a collection entitled ‘Mozart’s Forgotten Classics – The Elevator Years’.

And then the inevitable.  ‘our consultants are currently dealing with above average call volumes – please be patient’.

I can phone a call center in the Philippines and have a lovely young lady sort any technical problem in 10 minutes and recommend a favourite meal at Jollibee.

But in this country – no.

I was thinking about my experience today.

At least give us a choice – hell, you want us to listen to music while on hold – I’d like the choice of easy listening 70’s rock.

1.Led Zep.
2.Eagles.
3, Floyd.
4. Clash.
5. Queen
6. Billy Joel – at this point, your mind is beginning to snap.
7. War of the Worlds (sucker for a story).

Just help us out. You could leverage a simple demographic – old or young. There’s money to be made for call center operators – you could have a client press a button and select [1] ‘yes – I’d like to talk to someone about my transfer – but I’d also like to speak to about the alternative options that are the mainstay of your unwarranted calls to my mobile.’

But every single time I go through the same holding pattern – it’s similar to that experienced by pilots who are waiting for the mist to clear but know that the crosswinds will almost certainly lead to the death of that kid in seat D14 and the lasagne made by his loving Mother slaved over will almost certainly be uneaten. It is a sense of absolute dread.

So, you hold.

And then the sentence you dread:

“Please stay in communication – we will be transferring you to the next available operator who is will deal with your touchpad entry” Or words that effect.

“Please be aware that we are experiencing higher than normal call volumes”.

“Please select [1] or [2] that will best fulfill your requirements as we move towards our 2020 goals of all-inclusive professional support for our diverse clientele.”

So – in an ideal world you would press [1] or [2] and

Here is what will happen.

[1]

Someone will answer and say:

‘Tizzy to my Snizzy and Big Ass babes any Sniz to be down and white bitches be clapping ass down at the road where the men go way to do the white dust to be cool when my man goes to get them some clapping ass school. We get many money to the X when we go sex’.

I don’t mind an alternative income – but deal with my inquiry first, please.

“Sorry? – But to continue…”

“Here’s my ID number I have a bit of an issue with…”

“Let me transfer to the T who speaks for me homey – but if I tip the noodle then crunch that numero nigger”

(In all honesty, I may be a bit off in transcribing the conversations I have had).

Then back to the touchpad.

‘Please press ‘X’ to speak to an operator who speaks fluent gibberish.

Press.

‘Peep’

“Please hold”

And then it’s gone. Dial tone. Or that bitch who says ‘the number you have dialed is not available – please try again later.’

Or

[2]

“Please hold for the next available operator”.

I have my doubts about the reality of Call Center life.

“We value your business – as South Africa’s division of an international group focused on customer service we treat each and every one of our clients as an individual. Would you like to hear more about our structured finance options? Press [1] or continue to hold for a consultant”

(Mozart’s finest elevator music or inevitably a Beach Boys instrumental).

And in the unlikely event (this may take up to an hour where you are torn between throwing your phone at the cat or killing yourself , but are terrified you may lose your place in the telephonic queue) you actually speak to a real live human being.

And if you are lucky enough (12% hit rate to have someone pick up the phone) the conversation will inevitably go something like this:

“I just want my international transfer to work – it seems that the offshore account or Paypal may have encountered some regulatory issues. Or your system may be down – possibly you could pass on a recommendation to IT to provide your marketing or customer relations department with the ability to send out a message via email to inform clients there is a problem – and give them input as to the timeframe for resolution?’.

“Too right my smoothy – the girls go for the money. No money – no honey”

“For the love of God – just hand the phone or your headset to a supervisor and let me speak to someone who is not under the influence of large cans of energy drinks, overrated cognac and cocaine’.

‘Certainly sir, let me transfer you.’

‘Wait!’

‘Fuck’.

And back onto the roundabout you go. Because there is not a hope in hell someone is going to pick up the phone in the ‘Department of Lost Souls’

This country does try me sometimes.

Daily Rant – Hate And Malice Edition 07 April 2019

I have always spoken very gently to my eldest daughter about avoiding the use of the word ‘hate’. It really is too loaded, and its use is pointlessly emotional and non-descriptive as well as toxic to those who employ it in arguments.

I seem to encounter it being used by the increasingly by members of the increasingly strident legion of the triggered – who employ the same levels of self-control when engaged in a logical argument as teenage boys do over erections.

Triggered
The switch is always set to ‘on’.

However, I do employ the word ‘hate’ (other much more inappropriate words) in the internal monologue that seems to now run in now almost continuous loop in my head.

I reserve that word to describe very select entities. Amongst others, these are (A) people who throw used food packaging out of their car windows (B) politicians (C) the human penguins who wear sagging jeans at ankle height (D) the creators of Barney the Dinosaur and (E) Microsoft.

 

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The worst fashion mistake since MC Hammer Pants

There are more candidates than I had thought – what a shock.

The former four are pretty easy to understand and are common targets of blood-curdling levels of loathing among the more ‘mature’ demographic. Microsoft is an anomaly if we examine it dispassionately.

It is a corporation which employs some incredibly intelligent programmers who are probably interesting and kindly folk who read bedtime stories to their rosy faced munchkins prior to tucking them in for a night of sweet and innocent slumber – bless their cotton socks.

It is also a corporation that employs marketing people who are snatched from Dante’s fourth circle of hell where the greedy are punished by having to push great weights around the fiery landscape with their chests. Good – I hope their nipples chafe for eternity and that hideous hernias add to their torment.

Hell
Rolling Stones – ‘The Early Years’

The addition of Microsoft to my internal list is the result of an evolution of annoyances, including the damned of marketing influencing programmers and other semi-sentient innocents.

This evolution began with my loathing for Microsoft’s leasing option. I can no longer buy a product but must rather pay an installment every month for the dubious pleasure of receiving unwanted updates which snatch control of my laptop from me whether or not I grant permission – while at the same time more often than not gleefully supplying me with a wide variety of bloatware – and such treats as McAfee Internet Security software (By-line: ‘Founded by a Maniac and Run by Ruthless Profit Driven Lunatics for Your Online  Convenience and safety’).

mcaffy
‘Of course, I trust you to safeguard my sensitive information – your founder seems like a fine and upstanding member of the community.’

This focus on capturing customers for an eternity of torment can only be the result of those marketing people at Microsoft taking lessons from Nagrof the Seven Headed Demon Dog of Bile during their time spent pushing rocks around with their tits.

Secondly – and this, in all honesty, is what pushed me over the edge into the furnace of incandescent rage only this morning is the fact that Microsoft seems to have several versions of Windows 10. The version that I have has no functionality that saves a history of the copied text. If you make the terrible and apparently unforgivable error of hitting the Windows key and any other key when copying text instead of ‘ctrl c’ kiss that copy goodbye because it has passed on to the great cyber hereafter.

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The portal to the underworld (v1.2).

Theoretically (and logically) the approach should be to save versions of the last three copied text blocks (if I’m not mistaken previous versions of Windows did do this) – however, it seems that Microsoft will now require you to purchase Windows 10 version 2.1.34 Professional and Power User Edition’ (or some such nonsense). Either that or they have cunningly buried the functionality so deep in their system that it is for all intents and purposes lost to users forever.

You would have more luck searching for the ‘Lost City of Z’ in the deepest, most parasite infested regions of the Amazon rainforest than you would of finding a history of your copied text.

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Copy should be juuuuust around this next bend…..

The net result is a merry trill of laughter as you realise that the last hour has been a complete and utter waste of time and effort.

The trip to hell is paved with good intentions – or so they say. Bad intentions and simple focused evil get less pithy treatment. I can only hope that the many senior marketing representatives of Microsoft mend their ways. If not – I’m am sure that the Cerberus, the three-headed hell hound that guards the entrance to Hades will be waiting to lift a welcoming leg over each of them when they return to their damned labours.

This is really going to piss on your picnic

Anyhoo – thank you for joining me on this brief journey into the minds of the marketing parasites behind Windows 10 – I found it extremely cathartic. I can now examine in greater depth how to use a flame thrower on the purple dinosaur.

Politicians are a lost cause – they’ll be keeping Keith Richards and the cockroach’s company after the radiation has died down.

Those who litter and the sub-humans who have lost the ability to clothe themselves properly – I really cannot think of any sort of punishment beyond the fact that they will reap the rewards of their own intellectual limitations at some point – of that I have no doubt.

Daily Rant – Plagiarising Myself and Marijuana edition 04 April 2019.

 

My ex-boss – Ian Visser, posted the following on Facebook. Before you take a look at his post below and my response let me state this for the record. Ian is one of the nicest people I have ever met. He combines a sense of humour with an iron will, a human touch and a fierce intellect. I have no hesitation in saying that if he needed my paltry talents I would leap at the chance.

His post follows.

‘We owe male crocodiles a lot. Out of every 100 eggs a female lays, the males eat 99. If it wasn’t for them we’d be up to our eyeballs in crocodiles.

It will be the same with marijuana. Stories of untold billions will cause every arable acre to be planted and we would be up to the eyeballs.

Who is going to smoke the stuff? Bitcoin anyone?’

My response (which I post here because Facebook replies suck donkey balls as far as editing and readability are concerned).

Ah – what I like to call the Single Malt Paradox.

It simply folds when subjected to examination. It’s a logical fallacy to imply that ‘everyone’ will farm marijuana – or indeed that we will all be puffing away like chimneys.

Here’s a better analogy. Wine. ‘“Behold the rain which descends from heaven upon our vineyards, and which incorporates itself with the grapes to be changed into wine; a constant proof that God loves us, and loves to see us happy!”’. Franklin never said anything about beer. But let’s have a look at growth potential in the real world and consumers. Let’s do an experiment – let one of the readers go away, smoke three joints and have an intelligent conversation about Black holes and Negative Implications on Einsteinian Theory.

I have grave doubts as to whether we would thrash out a new Unified Cosmos Theory – possibly we might discover new names for purple – but alas and alack – no real new insight into the true nature of the cosmos. Now Let’s take that same poor befuddled sod and ask him to consume an entire standard bottle of Balvenie. I have my doubts about whether he would offer any contributions to physics because he’d be dead. Happy enough when he shuffled off this vomit filled mortal coil. But still dead

Quntum phsics.png
WTF? But yes.

Now we come to scarcity – which as any Econ student is one of main drivers of demand for luxury goods. That is goods which have little utilitarian value. Marijuana is a self-limiting good. Too much and you will cease to contribute to society in any meaningful way. You could become a freelance writer – but that way lies madness. We then come to the issue of arable land. There are lots that welcome the small scale farmer – but are there crops that are more profitable than marijuana? I would posit yes – people, after all, cry to the heavens for coffee that comes out of a cats ass.

cat coffee
Why must you shame me so?

After all the pontificating there is one truth – people will seek out intoxicants. I can step out of my front door stark naked and shout ‘grower’ and folk will know I’m not talking about my wedding tackle. I’ll have a bag of green stuff in my hands within 30 seconds – and it will not be lettuce. Or will it? I can go and pick up a great pair of ‘ABIBAS’ trainers for next to nothing at a local market – I have my doubts whether they will provide superior athletic performance.

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My view which I have stood by – and continue to stand by is that the cultivation of marijuana should be encouraged and taxed as a consumer good. Quality should be policed and further investigation into the therapeutic use should be encouraged. I hate big government – but this is a golden opportunity to enrich the lives of the disadvantaged. Of course the government and big business will cock it up – they always do – but it offers a hope of salvation for those who are currently without an income.

The illegal growers will still be around – they are parasites. preying on society’s ills – but they will become marginalised. As to the advisability of investment – there is an enormous difference between cryptocurrency and marijuana. I do not see many people eating Bitcoins. That is a fools game.

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Wait for it……….

So we return to Single Malt. It is lovely. But it is a luxury. So should be the case with marijuana. Abuse it and you will simply cease to be part of the economic machine that powers our society. Be responsible and it might provide an antidote to stress – and possibly provide some medicinal benefits. Investment is tricky.

The market may become over traded and then scarcity falls off the cliffside. So I would advise caution – but then again I’m a simple writer. As to who will smoke it? No idea – the same people who like Nappa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon I assume. But that said – there are many folk who like table wine – and there’s nothing wrong with a glass in the evening.

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Wine ot?

Reverse Daily Rant – Ouch and Yum Edition 01 April 2019.

You thought I was dead? Shame on you.

I’m like the Princess and the Pea. Uncomfortable – yet you put up with me in the hope that wild monkey sex words might be possible.

Guess what? It’s me flinging word poo again.

And a hat tip to Grammarly. I have never endorsed a product before – and they pay sweet fuck all. But it really is good. @grammarly – show the man some dollar love.

So here we go.

I may have mentioned this a few thousand times in the past – but it is entirely possible that one day I will die of a misprint. I have just enough book knowledge to make any interaction with nature fraught with danger.  I tend to be intensely curious about the natural world – and this includes anything in it that is not bipedal.

This includes the children of Mother Nature with either a more than a logical complement (2) of legs or less than what would normally be allotted in a sane and logical world

I should note for the record that I have not been kicked by either a Cassowary or a Kangaroo as yet – but I have not yet visited either Australia or New Zealand so there is still time.

The crawling and slithering things draw my attention like a moth to a flame.

The result of my interactions is almost always identical to the wonders of our nocturnal flapping friends – a brief period of intense pain and fleeting regret.

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I am a rank amateur when it comes to regrettable experiences with the denizens of the natural world that make it their life’s work to cause misery to the overly curious. I just finished off a very short article on Justin Schmidt (a true connoisseur of pain). Schmidt must be in the running for the world’s most interesting insane person. He developed the Schmidt Pain Index. I had read about the Index before – but rereading it nearly made we lost control of my bladder I was laughing so hard.

So, this is less a Daily rant then a celebration of pain and discomfort and the power of laughter – a sort of reverse Rant if you’d like.

A brief explanation of the Schmidt Pain Index for those of you who would like to know more.

“Entomologist Dr Justin Schmidt from Arizona, USA, was curious to discover more about the effects of insect stings. So in 1983, he developed the Schmidt Sting Pain Index to measure the painfulness of different stingers. The index runs from “1” (mild) to “4” (severe).

To give a sense of what those numbers mean, the sting of the average honey bee or wasp is rated at a “2”. However, the Schmidt Sting Pain Index isn’t just about a 1–4 scale. In addition to a numerical rating, Dr Schmidt also accompanies many of his sting assessments with a short qualitative summary to describe the type of pain and how long it lasts.

(Courtesy of http://www.guinnessworldrecords.com Please don’t sue me).

So you get descriptions like this:

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So I was forced into thinking – is pain simply physical or is there a psychological component? My findings – although not supported even in the slightest, is that psychological pain or the anticipation of pain when exploring the natural world is evolutionary in nature – bear with me on this one.

Hundreds of thousands of years ago our ancestors roamed the Savannah in the face of rapidly environmental conditions. Some headed for the coast of Africa where the coastal shores provided ample opportunity for societies that were comfortable with the hunter/gatherer lifestyle. Some of our ancestors shinned salt water and headed inland and started their great migration Northwards.

But there was always that person who would be pushing the boundaries of pain and discomfort. He (or she) was the first person to look at an oyster and think ‘hmm’. The first serious biped to look at a snail and think ‘garlic’.

These were the first real pioneers of pain and discomfort. They were the folk who went and bathed the fevered brow of the first person who was kicked in the testicles by a wild horse after thinking ‘maybe these are better for riding than the woolly mammoth disaster of -2062’.?

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It was a symbiotic relationship. ‘Teach a man to fish and he will be fed for his entire life’. It was the logical conclusion to ‘feed a man diced cuttlefish, marinaded in squid ink and he will eventually conquer Troy.’ Obviously vomiting the entire way and asking to please build an enormous wooden horse because ‘if I have to crap in a hoplites helmet again the moral of this army is going to go to shit – literally.’

So, it was vomit and fluid bowel movements, not fire or the invention of the wheel that has powered our eventual rise to dominance of the planet.

Dr Schmidt for all his insanity is paving the way to grasshopper canapes- and that is our future.

So. It gives me great comfort that one day there will be people sitting at a table and saying ‘try the Steve influenced Nerve Fired Hybrid Wasp Ant Kebabs – he was a pioneer of the Pain Movement, they wriggle and sting, but the throat feel is tingly’

Dr Schmidt – I salute you. The vision is so much more than scientific, it will make a real difference to people’s lives.

However, the overriding concern is sustainability. Those things that sting us are usually predators. Can we not afford to harness them to solve world hunger? Or is the alternative viable – an alternative which, as distasteful as it sounds, allows apex predators such as Keith Moon of the Rolling Stones to dictate culinary dominance over us all?

He’ll outlive cockroaches during the nuclear winter – and we will be lining up at his Pop Up restaurants named ‘The Moon Moth and Caterpillar Diner Experience’. Don’t ask for extra Beetles when the radioactive dust blows into your Bloody Mary and Friends cocktail.

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I for one am not prepared to embrace an all cocaine and LSD diet. Although those mushrooms look like they could make an interesting addition to an Oxtail Stew.

I am at the forefront of the movement of pain and discomfort on the culinary front. Go to any restaurant that specializes in ‘molecular gastronomy’ and tell me I was wrong when I ate caterpillars at the age of two. I was before my time.

I have a strong suspicion that wine lists will become obsolete. Instead, as the vineyards wither we will have culinary supporting acts like ‘The Silverfish and Carpentaria Bee Surprise’. Or the ‘Tarantula Terrine’.

The point of the matter is the fact that gastronomic pain and suffering was the way that we advanced as a species.

When Darwin published the seminal work ‘On the Origin of Species’ he probably was not speaking of gastronomy. But pain and culinary investigation, vomit and experimentation were the driving forces behind the rise of civilization. It was simple psychology.

Hesitation was not an option.

I’m doing my bit. Haven’t eaten many of them, but I’m getting better – and I am at least making an effort.

Slackers.

PS: I’d take a menu option from Jaggers daughter.  Please don’t sue me, get well soon. Tell Keith I’ll fry the Hoppers for the lurching lunch crowd. Love your work.

jagger