Wednesday, March 29, 2006


Strangely enough, twice this week people have asked me what scientology is. And quite frankly I really didn't know what they believed in aside from some of Tom Cruises insane rantings. Then lo and behold, this morning on MSN was a brief article describing some of the basics of scientology (sadly I didn't save the link and can't find it now).

For the most part Scientology seems like a cool religion. Man is a spirit and should be cool to one another. Somewhere on their website they talk about the evolution of different faiths and philosophies and they kind of present scientology as the culmination of all of those ideas. Which in and of itself is interesting.

Then all of a sudden, oops! you realize that they believe in aliens and stuff. They believe 75 million years ago, the ruler of the Galactic Confederacy, a dude named Xenu, brought billions of people to earth, placed them near volcanoes and blew them up! With Hydrogen bombs (apparently realizing volcanoes were too slow). They believe that the spirits of these 'sploded human beings cause humanity problems today.

Now like all people I like to keep an open mind about things and feel that I'm accepting of everyone's beliefs yadda yadda yadda... But as someone who's very interested in spirituality and philosophy and a man who's been raised in a Christian family, the incidence of Scientology does raise a lot of questions.

I think when it comes to spirituality the world can be divided in the following way. There's hardcore believers, who blindly do whatever they're told by religious leaders. Then you have people who practice the faith, but are very conservative when they speak about their faith or practice anything that may or may not fall in line with the thinking of the majority. Then you have your skeptics who simply refuse to believe anything that doesn't slap them right in the face. And finally you have people who are beyond skeptical but are actually threatenned by any idea that can't be explained by science and get ornery and uncomfortable if you even mention anything spiritual. And of course, there are the rare people (I've met some) who seem to be genuinely enlightenned and know there is a God because through life experience they have been made to understand a truth that can't be learned from a book or someone telling you.

I think I fall in a gray area that a lot of people do now which is a kind of flaky acknowledgment of the truth of spirituality without any serious commitment or devotion. But I am trying to find a path! I am trying to learn more and more about Christianity and I find the path very rewarding at times.

That said, I'm also very interested in the Matrix. I want that to be my religion so I can run up walls and fly and stuff. For the past 2-3 weeks I have been completely obsessed with everything having to do with the Matrix after watching a documentary that lays out all the philosophy behind the series for you in plain English. I learned a lot. Not to say that the movies were fantastic, but I think the THRILLOGY is jam packed with some ideas, basically rehashed philosophical ideas from thousands of years ago until now. This stuff interests me, I'm a geek. And for some reason I think the Wachowski brothers are geniuses for putting together all these ideas in some cool movies/video games/cartoons.

But above all what's impressive, is people's ability to make money off of ANYTHING! Philosophy isn't really something new, congrats on the Wachowskis for finding a way to make these old ideas lucrative by attaching Kung Fu to it.

Enter Scientology... Xenu, the ruler of the Galactic Confederacy brought billions of humans to earth and blew them up using Hydrogen Bombs??? That's not even a good sci-fi story! And yes, there are hydrogen bombs in that story, but where's the Kung Fu at??? Serious lack of effort there.

And I think at that point it becomes obvious why there are so many skeptics out there when it comes to spirituality. Spirituality is fascinating stuff if you actually study it and try and listen to new ideas critically. But it seems these days that all religions, from Christianity to Scientology have become franchises, each with their own gimmick and somewhere at the top of the ladder is some greedy jerk looking to make a few bucks off of it. I love what they're teaching, but it puts a damper on things to see the hypocrasy present in these institutions. Bush uses Christianity as an excuse to murder people. If you go to the Scientology website you'll see they're selling lots of things. One impression you get is that they're running a business, some kind of self help deal.

It's a shame that something as important as spirituality often reaches us after being tainted by corrupt "teachers"/salespeople. Usually when people say they don't go to church, the first thing they say is, "Oh, why bother going to church? You only see the same hypocrites in there that you see everyday on the streets!" Which is true. Of course the Pastor I listen to on Sunday mornings says, that that is exactly the point of Christianity. A gathering of people who need, and want to be shown a better way to live.

But the feeling is the same. Dissapointment. Deep down inside I've always felt that there was something spiritual about the universe. Maybe ... some kind of ... spirit? I don't know.. As Morpheus from the Matrix said, "You're not sure what it is, but you're always aware of it. Like a splinter in your mind!" The problem is, and I don't think this is something that is unique to me, is when you get dissapointed by the people who are supposed to be observing spiritual beliefs, or you get dissapointed by life and hence God, it becomes a reason to not care about these things anymore.

Good? Bad? As Morpheus says, "There's a difference between knowing the path and walking the path." In other words, things happen to us that make us believe or not believe in God but whatever we believe at any given time is part of the path that God has set out for us anyway. So it's all good.

And as Neo said, "I know Kung Fu..."

And isn't that what really matters in the end??

I know I come off as kind of a liberal, wishy washy, kind of guy... But science has done it to me. I believe that no matter what business you're in, the key is to tell a good story. All of these religions are based on stories. People then listen to these stories and decide whether or not they're interesting and whether or not they want to learn more about it and ultimately whether they choose to believe it. A good sci-fi story can be approached in much the same way, (minuse the believing part, though one may argue that there is a kind of truth in fiction when it comes to character psychology). Science is not different. A scientist makes an observation, proposes a model to explain the observation and then people decide whether or not it is true or false. I think learning about any of these three things in a critical manner is beneficial and exciting. Then again I'm a nerd. Live long and prosper suckers!

Friday, March 17, 2006

This one has Oscar Buzz

Long ago, Milen and I were having a conversation about Samuel L. Jackson. I thought he was the most amazing human being on the planet. Milen disagreed. After perusing Sam Jack's filmography he came across a project due to drop this August. The movie is the ironically titled thriller Snakes on a Plane. (SOAP). Most of us know that the movie is ACTUALLY about snakes on a plane. An assassin decides the best way to murder his quarry is to unleash a crateful of snakes onto the plane. A WHOLE CRATEFUL! Most of us probably even know that Samuel L. Jackson threatenned to not do the movie if they dared to change the title.

This discovery was made sometime last October I think? And I told myself, as I told Milen, one day in the not so distant future I'll see the trailer to this and soil my goddamn pants with laughter. That day has come.

Pants soiled! I couldn't have imagined it being any more perfect than that. Is this possible? I can't believe what my brain is telling me. He's shooting the snakes? There are people screaming as snakes emerge from every nook and cranny... on the plane? Different kinds of snakes??? Coming out of a woman's cleavage??? CGI rattle snakes, coral snakes, adders....??? CGI cobras??? SAMUEL L. JACKSON BEATING PEOPLE WITH SAID SNAKES????? SNAKES ON A PLANE!?!? AN AEREOPLANE??? OH SMEG, WHAT THE SMEGGING SMEG HAVE THEY SMEGGING DONE????

Someone made money for this? Did they just pic random words out of a dictionary? I can do that... Let me do it now... Razor back Ghosts... There.... Again. Sacerdotal-Facelift! Ingenious-Quean! Starring Raquel Welsh as the Ingenious Quean.

At this point it's over for movies. Not only should Samuel L. Jackson retire, movies should retire. The entire industry. This is just too insulting. They're not even going to try anymore? They just...Snakes on a Plane? Snakes are already very misunderstood creatures. This movie is racist against snakes.

My dad has a strong dislike of snakes. There's a story back in the day when we found a snake with orange stripes on its back crawling through the grass. Me, being a 10 year old biologist said, "Reptiles with bright colors are usually poisonous!!" My dad generally doesn't take anything I say seriously, but he wasn't about to take any chances. My dad attacked it with a broom stick. The snake slithered into a little hole next to the wall. "Let me get my CRAZY ass outta here!"

My dad wouldn't let the villain get away that easily. My sisters and I all gathered around the hole and watched in tense wonder as he poured bleach down the hole, hoping to fumigate it out. The snake didn't come out so he poured gasoline down there. The snake still didn't come out. So my dad lit that sumbitch on fire. The snake shoots out of the hole probably wondering, "What the f**k did I do to deserve this sh*t?!" And as a grand finale, my dad takes a broomstick, and with the accuracy of Donatello the Ninja turtle, smashes the thing's head repeatedly. Fatality. It kind of makes you wonder what it's all for? I mean, does a snake have a sense of justice? Does it have a soul, isn't going anywhere after being so unfairly murdered?

Anyway, we then put the snake in a jar and for some reason brought it to the SPCA. It was a family outing we all went wondering what terrible wonders they would tell us about the beast my dad had slain. The hemp wearing hippy at the counter looked from the ravaged corpse to my dad with true disgust. His words were something like, "What did you do this for???" Disdain flashed in his eyes as he handed us back the jar and watched us leave in shame. Not a proud moment for the Gregg Family. HOWEVER, I'm certain that story is far more layered than SOAP will be. I think I should write the screenplay for that snippet of my life. Snake under the Hizzouse.

There's nothing more I can say that hasn't already been said about this movie and the idea of putting Paula Abdul on television. It's ridiculous, random and upsetting.

Regardless I will go see it in the theatre when it comes out in August. I can't wait to see it... Talk about it at length. I want to BE this movie.

Kenny says:
I Chu Chu choose this movie...

***FUN FACTOID!!!*** There's a theory that people have phobias of things like snakes and spiders because back when we were cavemen, we needed a hardwired instinct to deter us from approaching these creatures because being macho, we would attack the puny things and then be injected with their deadly, deadly venom.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006


I have only seen 1 season of the hit TV series 24. That was the first season and it was as excellent as people said it was. I was knocking back about 3 episodes a sitting and enjoying every moment of it. After season 1 however, I stopped watching. There came a point where I fell so far behind, it became overwhelming to even think about catching up. I considered just jumping on the bandwagon this season but Droopy forbid it! Far be it from me to dispute the man.

But I feel somewhat ostracized from a large part of the world by missing the show. The most interesting phenomenon is watching the list of people on MSN on Monday night. By 8pm the MSN names already begin to change as people anticipate one of several airings of the show. They range from innocuous MSN handles like, "Vrej-Watching 24 (away)". The assumptions here being 1) People need to know what droopy is up to for every minute of the night 2) They really care that it says "away" next to his name and he won't be bothered several times for the evening 3) We don't realize that the distance between his computer and his television is about 5-8 feet and he is not even remotely away from his computer. I would be surprised if he wasn't straddling the tower and using his DVD burner as a cup holder while watching the show.

The names get slightly more fanatical. Names like, "ranma 1 1/2 - 24 is SICK!! OMGOMGOMGOMG!!!!" or "Milen-I'm not gay, but sometimes when I see Jack Bauer, I wish I was." Then you have people who deliberately ruin the show by making the climax of the show their MSN handle "Amish- Nina's back???" :-o

I want so badly to be a part of it all. My msn name would be "MastaCSG- 24 is so good I have a MASSIVE erection now (away)". When I listen to conversations about 24 I feel like I'm from another planet. People talk about it likes its real. "That's why they had to bring back Palmer last season! The current president wasn't as competent!"

Current... prez?

The good news is I can piece together information about the show from the MSN handles. I'm like some kind of anthropologist finding clues about some ancient civilization. The bad news is ultimately I will forever be excluded from the world of 24 no matter how much I try to catch up.

You know what the problem is? Shows nowadays require too much commitment. 24 is 1-2 hours a week of commitment! This scares me. The only shows I make it a point to watch every week are Scrubs and the Office. A nice quick laugh, half an hour commitment and if I don't feel like watching it one week it's no problem. I won't be lost the following week. Like a one night stand.

It's not like there's much to watch these days anyway. All good shows with the exception of 24 are provided to me by Droopy and other benefactors. Otherwise I stumble on some odd stuff. I found myself enthralled by Sabrina the Teenage Witch again last week. YOu know what I love about that show? The realism... Last week she went to some place called the pleasure dome to escape reality. Wouldn't we all like a little escape from reality? I think so. They put some thought into it too. That talking cat, Salem? Do you know his story? He was turned into a cat because as a witch he tried to take over the world. That shows creativity. I like.

Every now and then I find myself watching a kids show called Lazy Town in the morning. This show my friends, is very, very, very.... very... good. It's about all these freaking puppets and they live in a place called lazy town. And there's this guy with a moustache who lives in a dirgible (He LIVES in a freaking Dirgible!) and he comes down to teach them things about being active and stuff. He's also kind of a super hero. The people of Lazy Town are idiots and they're always falling out trees and stuff and he has to come to their rescue. And there's a also a villain who's really lazy and sets a bad example for the people of lazy town by being lazy. Sometimes sabotages their harmless projects. For example, if there's a dance competition, he'll try and screw it up! Cuz he's a jerk!

The irony of me watching Lazy Town is that it comes on before I'm supposed to go to work and I know damn well if I turn it on, I'll miss my bus as much as I tell myself I'll turn it off at 10 minutes to 9. Lazy Town, I wish I knew how to quit you!

And hey, if I choose not to watch Lazy Town for weeks at a time, I can still turn it on one morning and be up to speed!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Happy International X-day Awareness Month!!

Did you know that March 8th is Women's day? International Women's day no less! I found out today during an interesting exchange with a co-worker. Apparently in some country they get gifts for this.

Co-worker: Did you know today is international women's day? Back in my home country we get gifts and don't work for the day!!
Me: Really??? Why don't you celebrate by making me a samich, woman!?!


I was talking to a dude I know and he said he should buy his mom something for Women's day. Isn't that what Mother's day is for? And Mom's birthday? And Christmas?? I mean for crying out loud, can I go through one week without buying someone a gift? What if this international women's day thing catches on? I'll be screwed. Everyone with their birthdays and their Xmas and their cot-tanged Mother's day, Father's day...

Everyone's trying to dip into my pockets! It wouldn't be so bad if it was just a gift, but having just recovered from Christmas I feel slightly shell-shocked. You know what really bothers me about Christmas? Wrapping paper. I'd love to travel back in time and shake hands with the psychotic genius who decided that gifts, as expensive as they are needed to be wrapped in paper, a dwindling resource, something we spend a great amount of effort trying to recycle; Charging good money, for something that exists simply to be discarded! That's a true sign of a wealthy society I think. And don't get me started on greeting cards. Is it just me or have cards become less clever and more expensive? Where my dawgs at on that one?

"Happy Birthday, Bro!" Open the card up, "I hope you get a naked lady and/or some beer or something! HAHAHA!" 5.80$ US


"Look, I'm a goddamn dog!!! Maybe I'm surprised or confused..." open the card "Happy Birthday!" 8.50$ US

or the most brilliant, "I'm a frightenned cat" open the card, "You're how old?" 9.45$ US

Then I think to myself, black history month just passed. I didn't get s**t! I think it's time to start commercializing Black History Month. Create some kind of scam where all non-blacks have to buy things and treat their black friends. And I want our gifts to be wrapped in aluminum foil, just because it's expensive. And hell, since the Queen of England stole the biggest diamond in the world from Africa and put it in her scepter just to add insult to injury, I say the traditional gift for black people during black history month should be a diamond, diamond related or encrusted with diamonds.

Imagine the obnoxious greeting cards for that? All the racist things that white people tell me on a daily basis anyway, in card form! "Hey, when we heard you were black we knew we had to get you something!" open the card, "Fried Chicken and/or watermelon! Cuz you're black! And we're idiots! HAHAHAHA!" 11.50$ US.


"It's black history month, so we thought we'd take the opportunity to call you the n-word!" open the card, "You're Nice!(with hearts all around) *in small print* what did you think we were going to call you? HAHAHA!" 12.50$ US.

And so forth for all 28 days of February.

Furthermore Black History Month should be moved to July which has 31 warm days and no snow! We're not physically adapted to cold, putting Black History Month in February is more racist than not having a Black History Month at all!

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Invigilators and Cyborg Dictatorships

Today was the first time I've invigilated an exam. It's a pretty ridiculous position actually. I just stood there for the most part looking bad ass. Every now and then a student would raise there head and I would make obnoxious gestures. An hour and a half well wasted. At the end of it all some dumbass runs up and says, "I filled my scantron sheet in with pen!"


Good move, Starr! You're sick! Am I to believe he's gone through all this schooling and a semester of university and he's never used scantron before? Am I to believe he's never been told only number 2 pencils work on these things? Is he deaf, did he not hear the teacher repeatedly say to use pencil? Is he blind??? Did he not read the instructions??? And why did he seem to figure out something was wrong at the very last second? WTF???

That was interesting. But what struck me most during this whole thing was the t-shirts one of the girls was wearing. The T-shirt said, "Trust me, I'm a virgin!" I've never been so baffled by a piece of clothing. What am I supposed to think about this girl? Is the shirt being sarcastic? It was all written in cutesy letters too. I don't know anymore. Maybe I'm out of touch, but this new fad of women's t-shirts with slutty slogans on it blows my mind.

I really need to understand what it is that girls are expecting when they wear clothes with slogans like, "Super Bitch!" and "Lil' skank!" and so forth. Am I supposed to have mad respect that they have the confidence to advertise their personality disorders and loose morals? Cuz the girl wasn't really that hot and her sex life may have been the furthest thing from my mind if not for that shirt. But the question is, is she easy? If you wear such a shirt can I just approach you for intimate relations? I find it far more acceptable to dress in revealing clothes and leave some doubt in our minds. "Maybe she's just comfortable!" And at least we get some eye candy. But give me more than, "I'm easy." Written in goofy letters.

I tell you, if ever have a daughter and catch her wearing such things I will be a total tyrant about it!! "What the hell are you wearing? I'm a 16 year old whore?!? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" She'll be off to an all girls school immediately.

I yearn for the day when some megalomaniac decides to take over the world and put an end to this freedom of speech nonsense. Sure we have freedom of speech. Look what we do with it? No one has anything to say anyway.

Some slutty 17 year old: I'm a slut!
Me: Good for you! Child labourers earned 0.001 cent so you could wear that shirt and then went to whore themselves in the streets so they wouldn't starve to death. What do you have to say about that? Grow up, get some perspective on life for Christ's sakes!
Then I'd smack her on the ass, tweek her nipples and storm out of there hoping to find a woman with some class. ***SMACK'D!!!*** ***TWEEk'd!!!*** "Quest-ce que c'est???"

What we need is some kind of non-bias machine to govern us. There's this game I love called Deus-Ex which is based on the premise that the only perfect government would be one run by a machine. Naturally in the game it didn't work out so well. For some reason the gov't program escaped into the internet, joined up with another program and was downloaded by a megalomaniac who took control of all the machines on earth. Or something... Cool game...

Yeah... Cyborg governments... And slutty girls... I dont' know what my issue is really. Is it this cutesy spin they put on sluttiness I don't like? Is it the idea of non-hot women trying to get attention? I check out girls in revealing clothing on occasion. I don't think it's a sin. And I think women should be able to wear whatever they want. But only if they're good looking. So maybe that's my problem.

No, I know what bothers me. It's the fact that the same women who are soo skanky accuse guys of being perverts for staring at them. Go to There are half naked women there who say their pet peeve is perverted guys! Do they mean, perverted guys or human guys? Button up and guys won't stare at you in the same way. I know pretty girls who can do more for me with one raised eyebrow than if they shed all of their garments! I'm just confused that's all! I don't know what to think anymore!!! I don't think any girl likes being thought of as a slut, so why dress as a slut?