Friday, December 29, 2006


Geeky Musings has been up and running one year! I'm incredibly happy as I look on the blog today and find that it has had 2001 visitors. I never imagined that many people would even glance at 103 posts I've made.

What was that first humble post like? Well here it is:


Hi! This is just a brief introduction. As the title implies, I plan to post anime fan fiction and a few odds and end here. I should post some stuff soon.

Oh yes. You knew from those few sentences that something big was about to begin.

The original address for the blog was Yes, that gruesome title was ditched within the first few days.

I hope to make this a great year. I have a collaboration in the works. Plans are in motion to start making more posts overall and more with a leaning on the 'musings' side of the title. I'm going work to hard make this year better than the first.

Monday, December 25, 2006

How Does the World Feel?

With today being Christmas, I felt a little sad to discover this at

How is the world feeling?

The world feels...
lonely (27%)
frustrated (18%)
helpless (18%)
peaceful (18%)
bored (9%)
excited (9%)
other (1%)
That's just plain disturbing for Christmas. Advertisers would have you believe it's the happiest time of the year. Christmas is probably one the biggest time of social disconnect as we realize our failings of the year and face our disappointing families. *sigh*
Anyway, check out Moodtap. It's a pretty neat little site when what you see on it isn't depressing.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Send Your Name to Mars!

The Planetary Society is letting you have your name sent to Mars for free on Phoenix. Your name will be included on the Phoenix DVD and Visions of Mars. Plus, you get a neat little printable certificate, a nice last minute gift. The offer lasts until January 5.

While you're at it, send a
message to the moon with Japan's latest lunar mission, SELENE. A dandy certificate is also available for this message. Deadline is January 31 for inclusion.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Jail Time for Acts Done in Video Games?

Gamers in Germany could face jail for violent acts done in games on human or human-like characters. Current drafts say the punishment could be up to 1 year in jail.

Why the sudden uproar? A fan of the game Counter Strike went back to his former school and shot and injured 37 people before killing himself.

Naturally, minister Günther Beckstein placed the blame for the violence upon the horrible effect of the games.

Jack Thompson, meet your German counterpart.

I am so tired, as many gamers are, of authority figures placing the blame of violence on something they don't understand: video games. I'm just hoping that as gamers get older, they'll find themselves in positions of power where they'll be able to defend what they know to be harmless.

Coolah Energy Drink Review

Drink: Coolah Energy
Official Site: Coolah Energy

Advertising "energy from down under", Coolah Energy lures you in with a bright can. This Australian drink's sunniness continues with the suprisingly good lemon flavor. I usually don't even like lemon-flavored things due to their extreme sourness, but Coolah manages to transfer the lemon flavor without a stinging bite. I couldn't even detect a hint of an aftertaste. Though not the best energy drink I've had, Coolah does very well for itself.

Summary: Refreshing experience.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Give to a Noble Cause...

My pocket! Yep, the holiday season is up and rarin' and so are my eBay auctions. I currently have up my Xbox with NBA Ballers and Mortal Kombat: Deception for the Xbox. Please, bid today. All auctions end on Thursday. Without your help, I might have to brave a cold Christmas without a new Xbox 360 or any games for my PS3.

Your friendly neighborhood geek,
Big Nick

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Year

Yes, it is the moment of truth: Merriam-Webster has released its top words of 2006 list. The list we have waited for all year with bated breath. The word of the year is... drumroll please...


Crowd: *goes wild*
Truthiness: *jumps up with shocked look* ME?! ME?! YOU MEAN ME!?!?!

Yes, we mean you, truthiness.

Truthiness: *squeals and runs forward*

Truthiness, being defined by its father Stephen Colbert as "truth that comes from the gut, not books", was born in October of 2005. Since then, it has quickly risen to popularity (though I personally have never used the word).

Truthiness: *takes podium* First of all, I would like to congratulate my closest runner-ups, google, decider, and war, on making it so far. Getting here was hard for me and they deserve equal helpings of applause. Also, I would like to thank my father for creating me in the first place. Finally, I would like to thank you, all of my fans, for bringing me into vogue. Without your support, I never could have made my way to the top spot. Thank you!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Baby Jesus Replaced With Beer Can

*suppresses laughter* Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • In New Hampshire, Jesus was stolen from a resident's nativity scene.
  • The thief replaced the figure with an empty beer can.
  • The home owner is upset and calls the act "disrespectful."

My $0.02: *finally keels over laughing*

Monday, December 04, 2006

Garbage Used to Make Lard For Human Consumption

So nauseating... Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • At Fanchang Grease Factory in Taizhou, a city in China, made lard from sewage, swill, pesticides, and recycled industrial oil.
  • The lard is only supposed to be made from pure hog fat.
  • The factory sold the lard at half of the price of other wholesalers.
  • 83,000 pounds of raw materials and 11,600 pounds of lard were found at the location.
  • Samples contained 11 times more acid than national standards.
  • The factory has been shut down.

My $0.02: Mr. Sinclair's The Jungle anybody?

Saturday, December 02, 2006

NaNoWriMo Over

Hey all,
I'm finally back again. Thanks for being patient with me. I could definitely feel some good, inspirational vibes coming from you guys which helped to keep me going. I'll start posting regularly again soon.

Your friendly neighborhood geek,
Big Nick

Sunday, November 19, 2006

YJ Stinger Pounding Punch Energy Drink Review

Drink: YJ Stinger Pounding Punch Energy Drink
Official Site:
Stacker 2

Stacker 2 has a wonderfully pleasant punch flavor. The after taste isn't the usual nasty bitterness. It's actually more of a... sting. The drink's blend has some sort of mysterious herbal slam to it. While the after taste isn't as bad as most energy drinks, it definitely drags down
the flavor. The drink did, however, provide a decent energy factor within the small confines of its can.

Summary: Acceptably stinging.
Final Score: 3 out of 5

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Caballo Negro Double Kick Energy Drink Review

Drink: Caballo Negro Double Kick
Official Site:
Caballo Negro

Initially, Caballo Negro tastes pleasant. The after taste, however, is the worst I have ever encountered. After swallowing, I squinted my eyes closed and jerked my head. Figuring the reaction was a fluke, I tried the drink again and again and again, each time jerking like I was having a mini-seizure. No, I am not joking. The after taste is just that bad. The energy factor for Caballo Negro pretty high. However, energy cannot offset the horrible after taste.

Summary: No me gusta esta bebida de energia.
Final Score: 2 out of 5

Saturday, November 04, 2006

XForce Energy Drink Review

Drink: XForce Energy Drink
Official Site:
Xtrem USA

With a name like "XForce", the XForce Energy just plain didn't seem very promising. The drink screamed out generic wannabe. However, XForce is suprisingly good. The fruity flavor is very pleasant. Also, the drink is quite energizing. There's not much more to say about this strong energy drink.

Summary: A very solid package.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Image Source: Definitely me since the background is on top of my washer machine.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Just A Heads Up

As you can see by the little icon to the side, I'm participating in
National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). The goal of NaNoWriMo is to write 50,000 words in one month, which is about 1,667 words per day. So... you know what that means for ye old blog. Yep, the updates are likely going to go down. Please wish me luck, though! I'll definitely need it since this will be my first novel attempt ever!

Your friendly neighborhood geek,
Big Nick

Sunday, October 29, 2006

BooKoo Water With Vitamins Orange Energy Drink Review

Drink: BooKoo Water With Vitamins Orange Energy
Official Site:
BooKoo Energy

I'm so sorry... I have failed in my mission as an energy drink reviewer. I simply couldn't finish drinking BooKoo Water. The flavor was that of powdered orange rinds mixed in water in a very dilute concentration. The result was an intolerable bitterness. I can't tell what the energy factor is but it is probably outweighed by the sheer nastiness. BooKoo can't even be applauded for originality since the drink is clearly a Gatorade clone with energy drink contents.

Summary: Something's in the water, and you don't want to drink it.
Final Score: 1 out of 5

Thursday, October 19, 2006

School Bans Students From Playing Tag

You read the title right. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • An elementary school in Massachusetts has banned students from playing tag or any other unsupervised chase game for fear the kids will get hurt and hold the school liable.
  • Schools in Washington, Wyoming, and South Carolina have also recently enacted similar bans.
  • One parent says she feels safer about her son at the tag-banned school since she's "witnessed enough near collisions."

My $0.02: It seems like every two minutes you see a headline about an increase in overweight children. Now, a school goes and bans tag, one of the best forms of exercise for kids. Yeah, I crashed into a few walls and bumped my head countless times, but I'm a better and slightly healthier person for it. *spaces out for a minute, stare around the room, and then snaps back to reality* Umm... Yeah... I think I am...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Students Use Classroom Trash Can as Toilet

A South Carolina teacher gave five fifth-grade students permission to use a trash can as a toilet during a lockdown drill. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • The teacher, Philip Frandino, allowed four girls and one boy to use the trash can during a lockdown drill which lasted for less than an hour.
  • Girls used their jackets to shield the view of another girl using the bathroom while the other students turned their backs.
  • The boys followed the same procedure for the one boy who used the trash can.
  • The school district spokesman says the students were given all possible privacy and sanitary wipes.
  • Last year, Philip Frandino was reprimanded for isolating a student for two hours by cardboard for talking.

My $0.02: Wow. If it was an actual lockdown, the intruder would have been a bit disarmed by such a scene. I'm sure that was the strategy all along....

Friday, October 13, 2006

Wedding Dress Made of Cream Puffs

Ukrainian baker Valentyn Shtefano made his bride a wedding gown of cream puffs. The dress weighed 20 pounds and contained a total of 1,500 cream puffs. The outfit also featured a crown, bouquet, and necklace of caramelized sugar. Viktoriya, the bride, liked the dress. More can be found here.

Hmm... I wonder if it came with a matching underwear set?

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Recon Coffee Energy Cola Review

Drink: Recon Coffee Energy Cola
Official Site:
JUMP Beverages

When I popped open the can, a pungent coffee smell greeted me. Now, let's explain something about me and coffee: In it's hot form, I feel like the heat of the liquid is a betrayal of the refreshing nature of beverages. However, I do like the taste of coffee, so I actually enjoyed Recon. It was like a more refreshing version of Coke Blak. The only downside to the flavor was the after taste due to the lack of sugar in the drink. After a few sips, however, you get used to the effect. Recon also manages to combine a good flavor with decent energy.

Summary: Really good despite diet after taste.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Friday, October 06, 2006

Hot Pure Energy Drink Review

Drink: Hot Pure Energy
Official Site:
JUMP Beverages

Hot looks suspiciously like TaB's energy drink and has text at the bottom calling you to 'Release Your Inner Heat'. As you can understand, I was reluctant to try it. My fears weren't unfounded. When you first try Hot, the flavor bubbles up on your tongue, and you expect a tasty surprise. Instead, the drink fizzles out to a nasty, mutant cotton candy cough medicine flavor with a hint of strawberry. In addition to tasting bad, Hot provides no energy. I actually felt sleepier after drinking it! Hot's only good attribute is the can. The design looks kind of cool.

Summary: Don't try Hot unless you want to burn your taste buds off.
Final Score: 1 out of 5

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Man Exchanges Frequent Flyer Miles for Space Trip

You read the headline correctly. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • An electrician in London flew to and from the United States over 40 times in the past six years with Virginia Atlantic flights.
  • He redeemed his 2,000,000 frequent flyer miles toward a trip to space.
  • The trip is scheduled for 2009.
  • Virginia Galactic, who plans to start the space trips in 2008, will offer trips lasting 2 1/2 hours with 5 minutes of zero gravity.
  • Tickets cost about $200,000.

My $0.02: Wow. This is seeing the first steps of something grand. Once you have space trips, you have to have something more to do while there. So that leads to space cafes and the like... And then people will start to stake a claim on the moon and have bases there for entertainment... And then... Sorry. I couldn't help but go off on a science fiction geek tangent.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Meth Found in Man's Prosthetic

Police busted a man who hid crystal methamphetamine in his prosthetic leg. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • In Oklahoma, Larry Harper, 64, was arrested at his car business.
  • The drugs were found inside of a sock-like material in his prosthetic.
  • When the drugs tumbled out of the prosthetic, the man laughed, jokingly saying he thought he had pulled the wool over their eyes.

My $0.02: Better leave the meth alone before he loses his teeth too...

Sunday, September 24, 2006

This Is Your Mouth On Meth

Methamphetamine causes users to go from having healthy teeth to monstrostities for mouths like the one on the right. Tooth loss can occur within a year. The condition has been coined "meth mouth". The tooth decay of meth mouth is caused by meth's dry-mouth effect and the way the drug causes cravings for pop, teeth grinding and clenching, and long periods of poor oral hygiene. You can see more of the article at Science Daily.

Wow. I think a lot fewer people would try meth if you showed them this picture.

Friday, September 22, 2006

$1000+ Dollar Keyboard

Yep, a company called Stealth Computer Corporation is offering an industrial desktop computer keyboard for the paltry sum $1195. According to the site, the keyboard features:

1. Totally Sealed
NEMA 4X Stainless Steel Full Case travel QWERTY.
2. 114 Keys, 24 Function Keys, WIN KEY
3. Removable trackball for convenient cleaning
4. Adjustable Tension Ring ensures the proper amount of trackball smoothness for any user.
5. 10 Million cycles expected life
6. 6' cable w/ 5-pin DIN, 9-pin serial connectors, PS/2 cables or USB connector
7. Dimensions: 20.25"W x 7.9"D x 1.9"H

Ready to dole out about $1200 for a keyboard? The ordering page is
here. I can imagine that you're desperately clicking on the link to make sure you get your keyboard before they run out.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

X-rated Font on School Handout

X-rated font? Handout? School? OK. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • During a school open house in Monroe, New York, a third grade spelling handout was given to parents.
  • The packet featured male and female stick figures in erotic poses to form letters of the alphabet.
  • School officials apologized to the parents for the packet.
  • Administrators claim the teacher did not intend to use the font.

My $0.02: *pulls of MS Word and scrolls down font list* Ah-ha! Here's that X-rated font! Right next to Times New Roman. *smacks head* How could I miss it? Really easy to mix up. *sigh* Come on, it was obviously a specially downloaded font you couldn't accidentally use. Might as well 'fess up...

Monday, September 18, 2006

Hands Dipped in Boiling Oil in Attempt to Prove Innocence

I'll let the title speak since the details behind this story are a little horrifying. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • In Rajasthan, one of India's states, rice and wheat stolen from a school in late August.
  • The police were informed but took no action.
  • The council, or panchayat, decided to find the culprit itself.
  • 150 men from the village and neighboring areas were commanded to pick a copper ring out of cauldron of boiling oil.
  • The panchayat decided the 50 men who refused to retrieve the ring were guilty.
  • The council elders have now been arrested.
  • One man involved said this is not the first time such an incident has occurred.

My $0.02: A lot to ponder about. First is the meaning of food in our culture. Food is so plentiful. If someone came in and stole food from a school, there would be anger in the community over who would do such, but the school would probably be able to replace the food easily. There definitely wouldn't be any sort of extreme torture. Food is so available we don't even realize its value... My second issue is why only men were gathered. A woman could just as easily have stolen the food. The fact women weren't even thought suspect or capable subtly reflects inequality. Finally, the method used to find the thief was obviously ridiculous. The guilty were probably more likely to stick their hands in the oil than the innocent since they had something to prove. The innocent would definitely defy the punishment and not stick their hands in oil. The situation is a modern witch hunt. And to think torture has occurred in the area before and could occur again...

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Your Brother Was a Goat?

A Nigerian man suspected of murdering his brother informed police he attacked a goat which magically transformed into his brother. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • The man says he tried to chase some goats off of his farm.
  • One goat wouldn't move, so he attacked it with an axe.
  • Once he attacked the goat, it turned into his brother.
  • Many people in Nigeria still believe in black magic.

My $0.02: Yeah, his explanation sounds like some sort of weird dream description. It would have been better if he gave no comments...

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Cell Phones Found in Bowels of Prisoners

The title is pretty self-explanatory. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • Four prisoners in El Salvador hid cell phones, chargers, and spare chips in their lower intestine.
  • The prisoners, members of the Mara Salvatrucha gang, used the cell phones to coordinate crimes outside of prison.
  • The cell phones were found via X-rays after six weeks of investigation.

My $0.02: I wonder how the prisoners got the cell phones into the prison in the first place. Also, how did they know when the cell phones were ringing? Put them on vibrate?

Car Crash Victim Rescued Half-Naked

A Slovak man in a car crash was rescued without his pants on and a vacuum pump on his penis. Full story here.

Quick Summary:
  • The 42-year-old man ignored a "give way" sign.
  • He crashed into a bus.
  • After the accident, rescuers found the man unconscious with no pants on and a vacuum pump on his penis.
  • The man was admitted to the hospital with head injuries.

My $0.02: Wow. I just hope no one else got hurt....

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Pope Benedict a Man of Many Hats...

I couldn't help but post this picture of Pope Benedict XVI in red saturno (which looks suspiciously like a cowboy hat to me). It seems to put a fun spin on his position.

Image Source: Yahoo! Photos

Monday, August 28, 2006

E Celeste Extreme Energy Review

Drink: E Celeste Extreme Energy
Official Site: Unable to locate

E is just another energy drink which combines a nasty flavor with a strangely sweet taste. Though you try to love the drink, you just can’t get past the bitter undercurrent. The worst part occurs when you realize the freakish flavor doesn’t even offer any energy. Overall, it tastes like an improved version of Hansen’s Energy Deuce.

Summary: Nastily sweet.
Final Score: 2 out of 5

Note: I couldn’t find any information on the internet about this drink or who makes it. Does anyone have a clue? The can is green, and I’ll be posting a picture soon.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Ultrasound Disturbs Brains

Though ultrasound is considered safe, babies of mice who had ultrasound had abnormal brain development. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • The animals were marked with a chemical to mark newborn neurons.
  • Ultrasounds were applied to the bellies one group of the pregnant mice for the next three days for periods which totaled 5 to 420 minutes.
  • A second group had a sham procedure with no ultrasound waves.
  • The control group received no procedures.
  • The babies of the mice who received more than 30 minutes of ultrasound had brains which embedded material for the outer brain to the inner brain.
  • The fake treatment and control group showed no such changes.
  • Previous ultrasound studies have shown delayed speech development and increased left-handedness in humans.

My $0.02: Though I question the study because of the high number of the ultrasounds in such a short period, I feel like such results probably apply to humans. I still wonder why such technologies aren't tested for longer on animals before they are introduced to humans. So many women get ultrasounds now, it's impossible to tell what the side effects will be on the population.

A Bit of an Explanation

Hey readers,
I usually don't do personal addresses, but I have to apologize for the serious lack of activity of over the summer months. Being a geek, I have a natural aversion to hot weather and the sun. Thus, I went into a state of near hibernation, only emerging to munch the occasional bit of internet news. As the weather starts to cool, expect more updates.

Your friendly internet geek,

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Man Bites Head Off of Pet Rooster

Umm... Yeah. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • In Manhattan, a person found the body of a rooster on the fire escape near his apartment.
  • His neighbor, the 52-year-old Humberto Rodriguez, explained to agents that he bit off the rooster's head because it had hurt one of his other pets, a pigeon.
  • Rodriguez has been arrested.
  • He faces the charge of animal cruelty. Also, possession of a rooster is illegal in New York City.
  • He could have up to a year in prison if convicted.
  • The rooster's head was not located.

My $0.02: Though the story in itself is interesting, I can't help but bring up the original meaning of the word 'geek'. Geeks were carnival freaks who often bit the heads off of chickens. Though the particular denotation of geek is rarely used today, I believe it applies in this case...

Friday, July 21, 2006

Ren & Stimpy: The Lost Episodes Review

Whenever a DVD starts with an introduction from Weird Al Yankovic, you know you're in for an interesting trip. Ren & Stimpy: The Lost Episodes premieres three completely new episodes that were so wild, even Spike TV couldn't air them. The box also includes a separate DVD with the three episodes of Ren & Stimpy Spike TV aired. If you missed them for the short time they were on Spike TV, then this is your chance to catch up with the hilarity.

The new episodes are completely finished. There are no half-done episodes that were cut off in the middle of production. The subject matter is very fresh and original. From Ren washing girls in the shower to Stimpy carrying his and Ren's love child, you definitely won't fail to be shocked and entertained.

The inclusion of the Spike TV episodes is also great. Since the show had such a short run on the channel, I've been looking forward to seeing the episodes again. They seem even better the second time.

However, I must issue a warning to the squeamish: These episodes are gross. Really gross, even by my twisted standards. If you can't stand snot eating and the multitude of references and uses of fecal matter, steer away from this title.

The only other possible downside I saw was some of the commentary to introduce the episodes. Though some was interesting, other interviews were just plain boring.

As a long-term fan, I really hope these DVD episodes help Ren and Stimpy to be revived like Family Guy. The fact that almost all of the copies were gone by the time I got to Best Buy gives me hope.

Summary: These episodes are the Ren & Stimpy you always wanted to see.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Athens Gives Rise to Super Mosquitoes

Mosquitoes better at hunting are springing up in Athens. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • In Athens, the cramped housing conditions and air pollution have led to 'super mosquitoes'.
  • The mosquitoes are faster, larger, and better at finding prey.
  • Normal mosquitoes can smell blood from 15-20 meters. The new ones can smell it from 25-30 meters.
  • The new mosquitoes can also see in color.
  • The Athens mosquitoes fly at 500 beats per seconds (bps), while normal ones have 350 bps.
  • The new mosquitoes are also 0.3 micrograms bigger.
  • The Athens mosquitoes have grown resistant to air pollution and insect repellent.
  • The burgeoning Athens population of 4,000,000 people has given the insect lots of food.

My $0.02: If 'super mosquitoes' have developed in Athens, it seems like that the race will migrate to other high population areas. One could easily fly onto a trans-Atlantic flight or one to Asia and *boom*. We have a world wide epidemic of mosquitoes much worse than the ones we already have.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

New Merriam-Webster Words

Merriam-Webster Collegiate® Dictionary is adding almost 100 new words to its 2006 edition for the fall. Below is a sampling of some of the new words:

Main Entry: sandwich generation
Function: noun
: a generation of people who are caring for their aging parents while supporting their own children

Main Entry: ag·ri·tour·ism
Pronunciation: "a-gri-'tur-"i-z&m
Function: noun
Etymology: agriculture + tourism
: the practice of touring agricultural areas to see farms and often to participate in farm activities

Main Entry: uni·brow
Pronunciation: 'yü-n&-"brau
Function: noun
: a single continuous brow resulting from the growing together of eyebrows

The full sample list can be viewed
here. I personally am not a fan of Merriam-Webster. I prefer Wiktionary for all of my definition needs.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Lightbulb in Anus

Fateh Mohammad, a prisoner in Pakistan, had to endure a one and a half hour surgery to remove a lightbulb from his anus. He claims to have had no idea the bulb was the source of his discomfort.

What I'm curious about is the X-ray picture. The big end of the bulb is pointing up. Therefore, it was most likely inserted that way since there is little working room for a bulb to turn around in the intestine to turn around. So... how could he not feel that when it was being inserted?

Image Source:
Yahoo! Pictures

Friday, June 23, 2006

Clerk Urinates in Soda Pop and Gets Time

Well, the title doesn't require much explanation. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • In Florida, former convenience store clerk Anthony Mesa, 22, was working at a Pix store.
  • He urinated in a Mountain Dew and put in back in the refrigerator.
  • A foreman at a Dayton beach construction company chugged the drink and vomited several times.
  • He settled with the store for an undisclosed amount of money.
  • The store clerk was sentenced to 6 months in jail and 2 years of house arrest.

My $0.02: Why didn't the foreman check to see that the drink was sealed before chugging it? Also, why didn't he taste the urine when he first tried it? Even when I'm chugging liquids, I can always taste when something is wrong.

Friday, June 16, 2006

SoBe No Fear Gold Review

Drink: SoBe No Fear Gold
Official Site:
SoBe No Fear

SoBe No Fear Gold is a good energy drink. The taste is somewhat sweet and fruity. It lacks the horrible aftertaste many energy drinks are know for. The drink even delivers on the promise for “24 Karat Energy”. Plus, it comes in an interesting gold can.

Summary: Surprisingly pleasant drink.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Image Source: Me with my camera.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Megaman X4 Review

Editor’s Note: Plot spoilers throughout.

A “It doesn’t get Geekier than This” Review
Megaman X4 (PS1/ E*everyone*/ 1plyr)

Author: Kai O’ Tea

Just a quick little story on how I got this game. I bought this game at a Game Stop used for 5 bucks. However, the previous owner destroyed it so much that my PS1 didn’t even recognize it as a disk. So, I had to haul myself to an EB Games (Yeah, Game Stop wouldn’t do it :P) and get the thing rebuffed. Lucky for me, I was able to use my charms and get the disk rebuffed for free!! (Saved 7 bucks! ;) )

Anyway, you’re not here to hear about my soporific life; you guys , as well as I am, are here to talk Videogames... Bear with me now, this is my first review!!
If you’re interested in Background read on, if not go straight down to where the stars end.


Just a little game background for those who live under a rock and have no idea about X series. *clears throat*

After the discovery of a mysterious capsule that contained an equally mysterious reploid, Megaman X (or just X), Dr. Cain created robots that could think, choose and feel, just like a human. They were designed to coexist with humans in a world of peace and harmony (yeah like that’s gonna’ last...) And it didn’t. Reploids began rebelling against their human companions. Seems these “mavericks” (as they were dubbed) thought that they were superior to their human creators and were lead by a powerful reploid named Sigma. Thus begins the Maverick Wars. (Bear with me...I’m almost finished!!) So, because X is infuriated by the battles going on, (for he, himself, is a pacifist) he goes off and joins the war!...yeah it doesn’t make sense to me either. Anyhoo, the reploids still loyal to humans that fight to hunt down the Mavericks are called “Maverick Hunters” (must of stayed up late thinking of that name, huh?) This is the side X fights on along with an experienced class S (I’m guessing that stands for ‘Special’, but I’m sure it means ‘Sexy’ ;) ) Hunter, Zero; who, like X, has a strange and mysterious past.

As you may or may not have noticed, this is X4 which means there are 3 other games that proceeded it. X has successfully destroyed Sigma 3 times and...he’s back...again...kinda like that meatloaf in the back of my fridge...I swear I threw it out..but..Oh! Off subject! Sorry, bad Kai, bad, bad Kai! So, naturally X and Zero are called for duty…and that’s where the story ends and the game starts...

New Features!!!

Like I said, 3 games before there’s gotta’ be something new, otherwise we wouldn’t buy it. Unless you’re buying it for the intricate plot (ha! The X games with an intricate plot...that’ll be the day...)

1) Play as X or Zero- One of my favo’ features! Since X is such a whiny freakin’ pacifist, who wouldn’t want to play as “shuttup and fight” Zero?

2) Two “different” plot lines- well, that’s what it says on the cover...but I gotta problem with it...actually two: A) there’s no plot to begin with and B) they’re not that’s putting whatever character you chose in the same situation…though the ‘cutscenes’ are slightly different depending on who you picked.

3) PS1 system- graduated from Nintendo SNES to Sony Playstation?! I don’t know why they switched companies, but the graphics are a bit better

4) Cutscenes! -Whoot! It’s like watching a little anime show at certain points! Some are really cool...and some are really, really lame...I’ll try and talk about these more later!

~RATINGS ( scale of 1 to 5) ~
Plot (3/5) - Like all the X games before it, and all the others after it, X4 has a very basic repetitive “plot.” (Earth in trouble, Hunters Sent, Mavericks defeated, Sigma is behind the whole thing ((*Gasp* Shocker!)), Sigma is destroyed ((at least until X5...)) And X wonders why everybody fights and why there can’t be peace...).So X still has unresolved issues which he is never going to solve by the way...Maybe that’s why X is colored blue, because he feels blue..*laughs at own pathetic joke*. Sorry. But the X series, as I have played, are some of the only games that still have plot holes in plot-less storyline. I could go into them, but there’s so many that I would be late for my own funeral if I typed ‘em out. Whatever. 3/5 Not Bad.

Graphics (3.5/5)- Basic Side scrolling game-play. The movements are somewhat crisp. And the colors and backgrounds are beautiful. But what bugs me is a tidbit about Zero. When Zero is falling, his hair streams down behind him, which of course by the laws of physics, means his feet land first. (If they don’t, then your game is WAY more messed up then mine) The thing is, Zero cannot do ANYTHING (slash, dash or move) until his hair has caught up with him...So you have to wait maybe two seconds after he lands. Which isn’t long, unless your trying to run from a huge enemy. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE every strand of Zero’s beautiful blonde hair, I just wish it fell faster. 3.5/5 Pretty Good.

Music/Sound (3.5/5)- X games are actually renowned because of their beautiful music. The music here isn’t bad, (for example the boss theme, the introduction to a stage theme, and Zero’s Victory guitar solo are really good), but the overall game music isn’t quite toe tapping. I think the 1st X had AMAZING Music. More important is the sound. There are ‘cutscenes’ as mentioned before which means: Voice Casting! Really, the only one who’s voice matches the part is Sigma’s. Zero’s isn’t too’s very cool sounding, but I think it should be slightly deeper. X is being played by a girl...that should say something to you, X. . And Iris and her brother the Colonel have these annoying British accents...I don’t really wanna’ know what Capcom was sniffing when they did that.
Also, whenever X or Zero jump, dash, are injured or basically move in some form, they emit a sound. For example, jumping usually results in sounds that resemble: “Hup!” “Um!” “Uh!” “ Yeah!” Those four together just sound wrong, now that I think about it... Anyway it’s cute the first time, after awhile it gets annoying. Some players are ready to shoot themselves after about 15 stages of “Yeah! Yeah!” It personally doesn’t affect my game play at all. The two also have a cute lil’ catch phrase whenever their energy drops below the halfway mark. Zero says “It’s not over yet!” (which is hysterical if he dies right when he says it) and X says “Time to get serious!” (...X, I won’t even comment on that , especially while you’re Hup! Um! Yeah!-ing). Yeah, I’m going to stop there with sounds...
Some of the Cutscenes are awesome (I know I keep saying I’ll get to them and I will) 3.5/5 Pretty Good.

Replay (4.5/5) For some reasons, I really like playing this game over and over. I’ll get these urges to just beat the game again! I guess I must really like those cutscenes. (I’m getting to them!!) Something about this game holds a special place in my heart despite the ‘Swiss cheese’ plot, the crappy voice acting, and X’s whining about World Peace. I really do enjoy this game, despite all my criticism. I really that this review doesn’t discourage people from the Megaman X series, for they are TRULY one of my favorites. 4.5/5 Awesome!

~ Total Score/20- 14.5/20 = 73% C ~
I would personally grade it higher, but for the sake of criticism and being non-partial (Well I tried) I gave it this score. It had really good potential. I just wish Capcom would stay consistent with their own plot! Anyway, I’m glad Iris died, she was annoying and always hanging around Zero. But, X is still alive...I guess he really has to be otherwise the game would be called Zero 4. (By the way there is one called that...)

Personal Comments and Random thoughts by the author! (Yes, this includes some CUTSCENES I wanted to comment and summarize on)

CS Zero- Opening/The Old Man
Zero is resting peacefully in his capsule, when something (or someone) startles him by calling his name. Zero opens his eyes to see a strange old man in the shadows and addresses the reploid as “My Masterpiece”. Zero asks the man who he is, but gets no response other than an order by the man to “destroy ‘him’” As the Man slips back into the shadows, Zero calls out for him, but is stricken with a pain in his head. The reploid clutches his head as he falls to the ground in pain. When he comes to, there are many destroyed reploids around him...and there is blood on his hands...Just then an alarm blares for all Maverick Hunters to report to the control center...It was a dream...Zero softly says to himself that he had the same dream before, but thinking of his duty, he rushes off to the control center. (I didn’t know reploids had blood in them. How come there’s never any when we destroy Mavericks? I don’t know...Still this cutscene gives me chills when I see it...)

CS Zero- Iris Dies (by the way Iris is the brother of the Colonel. She fell into despair after Zero destroyed her brother, who was one of leaders of a group of Mavericks. I’m guessing she was so upset that she too, went Maverick. This takes place after Zero battles her)

Iris is laying on debris, critically injured. Zero rushes over and bends down by her side. Iris admits that she wanted a world where only reploids could exist, but Zero solemnly replies that reploids cannot live without their human creators. Iris replies that she knew it was true, but she still dreamed of living in a World of only reploids...with Zero. She grips onto Zero’s hand, as she smiles softly, lowers her head, and dies. (Zero does Robo-CPR! No, sorry, I’m joking) Zero calls out her name a couple of times, trying to awake her. He finally realizes she’s gone, and picks her up and begins to question his purpose of fighting...people are only going to die. (Oh geez. Just what we need, another X. Anyway, Zero didn’t spend too much time grieving since the stage immediately continues after this scene.)

*I just want to make a little comment about this scene and how it ties into religion. If you’re rolling your eyes now, just go to the next paragraph. Trust me, I don’t care. Anyway, you know how Zero makes a comment that a world with ONLY reploids could never exist without their human creators? Is this a tiny microcosm saying that Man cannot exist in a world without the guidance of his Creator? Maybe, maybe not. Just something to consider...*

CS X- Final/ The Journey Home. (This is about the only good cutscene in X’s story, and it’s not even that interesting...I figure I had to throw in one X scene.)

After the destruction of Sigma and the Space Station, X escapes in an emergency pod and is now flying back to Earth. While traveling, he begins to wonder what causes reploids to go Maverick , and if fighting really does anything. (here we go again...) Zero comes up on the intercom from the Hunter Base to check on X (this is the only time we see Zero in X’s storyline, however we don’t see X at all in Zero’s.) So, X begins telling Zero about what he’s been thinking. (I’m sure Zero’s thrilled to hear about X’s pacifistic views AGAIN!) He asks Zero to “take care of him” if he ever goes Maverick (we all know that means “kill him,” right?), but Zero abruptly replies that X shouldn’t think such silly thoughts...And it ends...yeah kinda sucks right?

CS Zero- Forbidden Memories -takes place after Zero meets up with Sigma, and Sigma reminds Zero that he (Sigma) was once an Ace Maverick Hunter...
A sort-of young looking Sigma walks over to two unnamed Maverick Hunters. He asks the two where the “Red Maverick that wiped out Garma’s unit” was. The two reply that the Maverick went inside a near-by cave. Sigma says he’ll go alone; that he didn’t want “anymore of his people being sacrificed.” (Yes, Sigma said that!) So Sigma is walking along gazing at pieces that were once reploids, when he comes across the Red Maverick he had been looking for. Of course, immediately, the rogue reploid attacks, but Sigma easily dodges. This continues for a while until Sigma tosses the maverick high into the ceiling. Sigma smiles thinking that surely the robot would be down for the count; he was wrong. The red Maverick emerges again, this time with a sinister smile. Sigma decides he’s through playing around and takes the battle to the next level by drawing out his Saber. The unarmed Maverick pulls a metal pipe from the ceiling as a weapon. So the two engage in a little swordplay until finally...There is a deafening clash. Sigma cries out in pain... his right arm, along with his saber, laid de-attached from his body a few feet away...The Maverick, thrilled that his victim is helpless and unarmed , laughs with glee now that he can have some fun torturing him. So, the reploid continues to beat up Sigma, and finally grips his hands around Sigma’s neck. Sigma grunts with pain as the Maverick appears to be trying to rip off the Hunter’s head. With each scream that Sigma cries, the Maverick laughs louder until...There was a flash of light! All of a Sudden, the Maverick relinquishes his grasp from Sigma and begins screaming and clutching his head as if he was in pain. In the midst of confusion, Sigma takes the opportunity to punch the Maverick straight in his helmet crystal with his only remaining arm. The crystal shatters, and the red Maverick falls to the ground, beaten...
Outside, the two other reploids watch as Sigma emerges from the Cave. They greet him cheerfully, but soon notice he’s in bad shape. Sigma grunts at them to retrieve the defeated Maverick so he can study it. The two reploids, more concerned with their wounded commander, ask again if he’s okay. Sigma yells at them to be quiet, and roughly pushes them aside and heads back to headquarters...

Returning to the game, Sigma finally realizes that the “Red Maverick” he had encountered was in fact...ZERO!

So, that’s about it for my Review. Hope you enjoyed it! I think I might attempt to do some other games as well...Oh yeah, sorry about all the ellipses (...) In the paper. I think they add dramatic effect.

Questions? Comments? Insults?
Keep em to yourself ;)

Editor’s Note: Thanks to Kai O’ Tea for doing this review. Ignore the final comment, though. That’s just the reviewer’s attitude shining through. Feel free to comment.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Steven Seagal’s Lightning Bolt Asian Experience Energy Drink Review

Drink: Steven Seagal’s Lightning Bolt Asian Experience
Official Site:
Steven Seagal's Lightning Bolt

I stared at the can of the drink for several minutes, fearing what lay inside. Everything about the look, from the boasts about “all natural” ingredients to Steven Seagal’s beady eyes staring at me, made my energy drink senses tingle. I should have listened to them and not drank the drink. First of all, the sweetness about it was completely unnatural, and I don’t mean unnaturally good. Next, I have a problem with what exactly the flavor was supposed to be. How does “Asian Experience” taste? If it was supposed to taste like some sort of disgusting fruit, then success was achieved. The only redeeming factor was the lack of an aftertaste.

Summary: I clutched my stomach in sickness.
Score: 2 out of 5

Saturday, June 03, 2006

'Alien Head' Shown in Duck X-Ray

At the The International Bird Rescue Research Center in Cordelia, California, an X-ray of a duck with a broken wing revealed an 'alien head' in the bird. The center will be auctioning off the X-ray on eBay to raise funds starting on Sunday. In the bottom right corner of the X-ray, you can view the 'alien head'.

Better get your wallet ready...

Photo Source:

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Man Cuts Off Penis to Prove Faithfulness

A man severed his penis to convince his wife he wasn't cheating. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • A Malaysian man argued with his wife after she found a text message on his phone from another woman.
  • To prove to his wife he wasn't cheating, the man cut off his penis and came out of his room bleeding.
  • The man was rushed to the hospital where he underwent a reattachment surgery.

My $0.02: ...



What was cutting off his penis going to prove?! It's not as if he cut off his penis before he was accused of having an affair. The situation only proved he has psychiatric problems and needs marriage counseling.

Man's Testicles Ripped Off By His Wife

The story really doesn't require more of an introduction than the title. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • The bi-polar wife of a Philadelphia man suspected he was cheating.
  • While he was sleeping, she assaulted him by ripping and tearing at his testicles with her fingernails.
  • Paramedics rushed him to the hospital where he was labeled to be in critical condition due to profuse bleeding.
  • He was labeled stable after a reattachment surgery.

My $0.02: I think the fact the couple lived in Tioga-Nicetown is rather amusing. While I suppose ripping your husband's testicles off would prevent him from cheating, I don't think that it's the way to go when you suspect your spouse is being unfaithful.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

PS3 Release Date

Time to start saving up. Sony has announced the PS3 release date. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • The Playstation 3 will launch November 17th in North America.
  • The 20 GB hard disk drive(HDD) will cost $499 (US).
  • The 60 GB HDD will cost $599.

My $0.02: The system is way too expensive. Hard core gamers will pay the price, but the casual gamer will find the price to be too much. The main advantage the Playstation still has is a huge game library from backwards compatibility and great third party game support, but those won't matter if people can't afford the system in the first place.

Friday, May 26, 2006

TaB Energy Review

Drink: TaB Energy
Official Site:
TaB Energy

TaB Energy tastes like cotton candy-flavored cough syrup. There’s a reason the combination doesn’t exist, even in cough syrup. In addition to the strangely nasty taste, 10.5 fl. oz. drink doesn’t deliver on energy. The drink tries to redeem itself by being low calorie, but since the calorie count on most energy drinks isn’t high anyway, the advertising strategy doesn’t work. As a side note, I can’t help but laugh at the can color scheme. Image Source: Wikipedia

Summary: Horrible taste and no energy.
Final Score: 1 out of 5

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Arizona Rx Energy Herbal Tonic Review

Drink: Arizona Rx Energy Herbal Tonic
Official Site:
Arizona Bev

Arizona Rx Energy is a drink which leaves you feeling unfulfilled. You consistently taste citrus sweetness as you drink, but it is muffled by too much water. Additionally, there is an aftertaste like orange peels. The energy factor is ok, but not proportional to the size. However, the drink is a decent value with 23.5 fl. oz. for $0.99.

Summary: Definitely not Rx power.
Final Score: 3 out of 5

Saturday, May 20, 2006


I have recently found out about a fun little political simulation game: NationStates. In it, you get to created a nation influenced by your political views. Every day, you make a decisions which influence how your nation develops. You can join the UN and influence the decisions of the world-wide politics in the game. Though there is no winning, as in real life, you can gain serious political influence. The coolest nation in the game is the Republic of Munificent (aka, my nation).

Anti-Social Behavior Order

A retired businesswoman has been issued an anti-social behavior order due to allegations she vandalized her neighbors' property and blocked roads with dog feces and dead animals. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • A 57 year-old retired businesswoman in northeast England alledgedly argued with at least 15 people.
  • She is accused of: loudly playing a choral work "about rape, pillage and the trashing of villages,"; damaging neighbors' vehicles; shining floodlights into a neighbor's home; tipping oil over in a man's driveway at night; and blocking roads and community areas with trash, dead animals, dog feces, glass, and nails.
  • There were 250 incidents involving the woman is fewer than 16 months.
  • A district judge granted the local Council's application to give the woman an anti-social behavior order(ASBO).
  • Under the order, she is banned from damaging property, spreading trash outside of her land, entering other people's domestic property, playing loud music, and installing equipment away from her land.
  • She is also ordered to pay $135,000.
  • If the order is breached, she could face up to five years is in prison.

My $0.02: With such crazy behavior, how was she ever a businesswoman?! Instead of instantly slapping an order on her, the court should have given her a psychological evaluation. Giving her the order was like stitching up a stab wound without fixing the internal damage.

Monday, May 15, 2006

SoBe Superman Super Power Adult Energy Supplement Review

Drink: SoBe Superman Super Power
Official Site: Unable to locate

In the energy drink market, you regularly come across medicinal drinks which make you sick in your stomach. At last, a hero has come to save us. SoBe Superman is a superb blend. The taste is very similar to Coca Cola mixed with light tea. While the combo may not sound good, it is wonderful. Additionally, the drink delivers Superman energy. The combination of energy and taste make this drink a true gem.

Summary: Best. Energy drink. Ever.
Final Score: 5 out of 5

Friday, May 12, 2006

Heart-Shaped Spud

During February (Potato Lover's Month), Linda Greene of Moon Township, Pennsylvania found a heart-shaped potato. She recently reported her find to the Idaho Potato Commission. The potato is currently stored in Greene's basement cupboard.

Well, hearts aren't shaped like the potato in question. The commercialized images of them disturb me to some degree when they are referred to as "hearts"... But I'm not going to go off on that geek tangent. The picture is pretty cute.

Photo Source: Yahoo! Photos

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Weed Reward for Doing Homework

A mother in Pennsylvania rewarded her son for doing his homework with marijuana. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • A 13-year-old boy was required to do his homework as soon as he got home.
  • As a reward, his mother would smoke marijuana with him.
  • The mother claimed she had been smoking marijuana with him since he was 11.
  • Police discovered the situation after executing a search warrant.
  • They confiscated marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and $600 she said belonged to a drug dealer.
  • The mother is charged with "marijuana possession, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of children and possession with intent to distribute drug paraphernalia".

My $0.02: My slightly off-topic question is: Why is homework so boring students must be compensated for doing it? The joy of learning something new and interesting should be enough of a reward for doing homework. However, it isn't. Why? Because the work generally done in school is dulling and repetitive. It has few, if any, applications to real life. Students must have superficial rewards to do it.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Hansen’s Orange Energade Review

Drink: Hansen’s Orange Energade
Official Site:
Hansen's Energy

Hansen’s Orange Energade is a monstrous 23 fl. oz. can whose contents claim to be 2 parts sports drink and 1 part energy drink. Though a novel concept, the beverage comes short of being either one. The liquid has a distinctly watered down taste. Only a slight twinge of something somewhat fruity is detectable. The only good part about the flavor is the lack of an aftertaste. The drink is non-carbonated, which though good for athletic drinkers after exercise, will turn off a lot of the main energy drink crowd. Also, the energy factor in relation to the total size is low. You end up slightly pepped up with a full bladder.

Summary: Very weak taste with little bang for size.
Final Score: 2 out of 5

Rip It Energy Fuel Lime Wrecker Review

Drink: Rip It Energy Fuel Lime Wrecker
Official Site:
Rip It Energy

Rip It Lime Wrecker is exceptionally tasty. The tangy blend, though not quite lime, is sweet and has no aftertaste. A lot of pop I’ve tasted hasn’t been this good. The only thing preventing Lime Wrecker from claiming a perfect score is the energy factor. The drink simply doesn’t have enough zest to drive you on.

Summary: Very tasty blend.
Final Score: 4 out of 5

Monday, April 24, 2006

Naked Man Found Lodged in Chimney

The title speaks for itself. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • In San Francisco, police were called to a house under the assumption a burglary had been attempted.
  • They found 23-year-old Michael Urbano completely naked and stuck in the chimney.
  • He said he had come home without his keys and decided to enter the house through the chimney.
  • Urbano removed his clothing because he thought his clothes would slow him as he went down.
  • The attempt failed because the cable-television wire he was using to lower himself with snapped.
  • Urbano remained trapped for four hours before help reached him.
  • The police booked Urbano for being under the influence of drugs.

My $0.02: ...

Sometimes, I wonder how many more incidents like this occur and go unrecorded.

Hansen's Energy Deuce Review

Drink: Hansen’s Energy Deuce
Official Site:
Hansen's Energy

So far, I haven’t come across an energy I felt I was unable to drink. Or so it was before I tried Hansen’s Energy Deuce. The overpowering drink sickened me. It had the taste of mutated green tea. After choking down half of the can, I got use to the taste. As this point, it simply became another bland mix flowing down my throat. The energy was not worth the damage to my taste buds.

Summary: Toxic waste in a can.
Final Score: 1 out of 5

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Animals Return to Nuclear Blast Region

After 20 years, wild life is now thriving in the region of the Chernobyl. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • After the nuclear reactor in Chernobyl, Ukraine exploded in 1986, humans evacuated the area.
  • In the absence of humans, animals have returned to the region.
  • Trees are growing back, though they are very deformed.
  • Local animals stuck in the area are as healthy as animals in clean areas.
  • Mice introduced to the area did not fare as well as local mice.
  • Only one mouse was found with cancer-like symptoms.
  • Ample evidence of DNA mutation was found, though none of the mutations affected the physiology or reproduction of the animals.
  • According to one scientist, the benefits of removing humans has outweighed the harm of radiation.
  • James Lovelock, an environmentalist, wonders if small amounts of nuclear waste should be in tropical forest to protect them from greedy investors.

My $0.02: Wow. Humans are worse than a nuclear blast for wild life. Without man continually ruining the region, animals have been able to adapt and come back in full force. I can't agree with the idea of introducing nuclear waster to a region since it so negatively affects animals currently living in the region, but the story does emphasize the negative role people have on a region.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Monster Rabbit

German rabbit breeder showcases his giant male breeding rabbit named Robert. The fact this is a breeding rabbit is simply 'hare-raising'. Just thought the pic was appropriate with Easter approaching.

Yahoo! Photos

Friday, April 14, 2006

3C Increase in Temperature Could Wreck Planet

With CO2 emissions showing no signs of decreasing, the earth could be in for some major climate changes. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • A report by the Hadley Center, an authority on world temperature, simulated a 3C temperature change.
  • The model showed an outcome which could destroy half of all wildlife reserves, wreck major forest systems, and put 400 million people at risk for hunger.
  • Such a change in temperature could likely occur in 100 years.
  • The UK and the EU are trying to prevent a temperature rise of above 2C.
  • China and India's emissions are rapidly rising.
  • The US refuses to cut emissions with chief climate adviser, James Connaughton, being cited as saying he "did not believe anyone could forecast a safe level and cutting greenhouse gas emissions could harm the world economy. "

My $0.02: There is no way Europe alone can prevent a temperature rise with the global CO2 situation. It's only a small part of the whole planet. The U.S.'s refusal to even acknowledge the situation is shocking considering the fact it usually empasizes its role in helping the global economy. However, beyond all of the material on global warming, I wonder about the information saying the planet is due for another ice age. What effect will such conflicting forces have on each other?

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

BooKoo Bite Energy Review

Drink: BooKoo Bite Energy
Official Site:
BooKoo Energy

When Bookoo uses the word “bite”, they mean it. The drink has a biting taste and rends your stomach to pieces. It is one of the few energy drinks that made me gag. Though it has a slightly pleasant sweet taste at times, nothing compensates for the overall feel. However, Bookoo does deliver on its promise to deliver “bookoo” energy.

Summary: Terribly nasty rush.
Final Score: 3 out of 5

Monday, April 10, 2006

Ticket for Crossing Street Too Slowly

Put some pep in your step when crossing the street, or you run the risk of getting a ticket. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • Mayvis Coyle, an 82-year-old Cherokee medicine woman, started crossing a street in San Fernando Valley with her cane when light was green.
  • When the light turned red while she was crossing, an officer ticketed her for obstructing traffic.
  • The ticket is for $114.
  • The police department says it is cracking down on pedestrians improperly crossing the street to prevent accidents.

My $0.02: Pedestrians are supposed to have the right of way. Though some people in cars might be inconvenienced, the light time should be extended to account for older citizens and other people with mobility problems. Besides, few could cross five lanes of traffic in 20 seconds without exerting themselves, including my out-of-shape geek self.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

BooKoo Citrus Energy Review

Drink: BooKoo Citrus Energy
Official Site:
BooKoo Energy

As far as energy, the most important part, is concerned, BooKoo Citrus Energy gives a decent kick. It also manages to perform a miracle: there is no aftertaste. It is a clear with a slightly tangy flavor. I actually felt refreshed. However, in getting rid of the aftertaste, the drink somehow became too bland. Also, the drink is not sweet, which will turn many people off to it.

Summary: Great if you have trouble choking down other energy drinks.
Final Score: 3 out of 5

Friday, March 24, 2006

Soul Calibur III Review

Soul Calibur III
Platform: PS2

Once again, the power of the dark sword Soul Edge is rampaging across the known world. Nightmare has appeared again and is destroying everything in his path. A mysterious man named Zasalamel appears to be attempting to use the power of the sword for his own benefit. You must use your fighting skills to aid or hinder Soul Edge.

Soul Calibur III introduces three new characters to the fighing line-up: Zasalamel, who wields a reaper; Setsuka, who uses a katana; and Tira, who fights with a giant, bladed hula hoop. The characters, especially Tira, are fresh in their style and add to the quality of the fighters.

The main mode of the game is Story Mode. Through this mode, you unlock all sorts of goodies to be bought in the store and earn the players’ different endings. This time, you get to choose the path you travel as you go through the mode. Though your decision influences who you will fight, it has no real impact on the game. Since most people will use the same thought process each time to make decisions, you’ll like find that you’re fighting the same people. The game also throws in some cut scenes to break up the monotony between battles. However, after the first few times of seeing the same cut scene for each player, you’ll wish you could fast forward through them. The ending are different if you press certain button combinations during them. Though have two different ending for the same character is cool, it leaves you confused as to which one really happened.

The game also adds a mode called “Chronicles of the Sword”. You create a custom character and use strategy to guide their team through battles. The character customization is really great. There is a wide variety fighting styles to make your player, from a knight with lances and swords to a dancer who fights with tambourines and fans. The game lets you dress your character in many ways. You can clad yourself with armor, or you can run around in your underwear. However, I don’t like how what your character is wearing doesn’t affect the gameplay. They’re just as protected scantily clad as when they are wearing many layers of defense. The mode itself is really fun since you have to think to make it through battles. However, the dialogue and storyline are really cheesy and flat. Even the attempts at humor seem lame.

A competition mode in the game allows you to fight many battles. Though the battles can get boring, the money earned makes fighting worth the effort. There is a challenge mode that tests your skills at using strategy in different battles to fulfill certain goals such as defeating 50 enemies in a row or taking down a giant colossus in Greece. I found many of the challenges to be colorful and fun. The shop allows you to buy a plethora of goods, from character photos to new weapons and armor. Museum and practice modes of course come standard.

Conclusion: I was quite well pleased with the title. There many of hours of gameplay packed in. Certain spots just contain too much repetition, and the plot could certainly use some work. As compared to other Soul Calibur games, this one does not offer quite as much innovation.
Score: 4 out of 5

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Widescreen DVD Review

Reviewed: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire Widescreen DVD
Official Site:
Harry Potter at Warner Brothers

In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, someone has entered the Harry into the Triwizard Tournament, a “friendly” competition between magical schools. The boy wizard battles through challenges as he tries to make it through his fourth year at Hogwarts.

Most of the other Harry Potter movies do the book justice. Though they leave out some details, they mostly keep the essence J.K. Rowling injected into the original work. However, I was woefully saddened by the detail of Goblet of Fire. The movie did not show the hilarity of Harry at the Dursleys’ house. Instead, the story began at the Weasley’s house. I feel like the Quidditch World Cup was completely botched. No Quidditch was even played! The Yule Ball, while lovely, took too much of the movie as it was jazzed up to emphasize Hollywood teen drama. The final challenge of the Triwizard Tournament was lacking, since it included none of the challenges listed in the book such as the sphinx’s riddle or the vicious spider. Also, so many fun details were left out. I’m sure movie viewers would have loved Ludo Bagman, the fat ex-Quidditch player; veela, the ultra-sexy creatures of the wizarding world; Winky, Barty Crouch’s house elf who is shamed early in the book; and the blast-ended skrewts, one of Hagrid’s class creatures whose name is self-explanatory. Overall, however, the plot was similar to that of the book. The scenes were well-acted and similar in dialogue. I know certain details had to be cut. As a fan of the book, I just feel a few too many were taken out.

The movie makes up for the plot cuts with the gorgeous special effects. The dragons were simply gorgeous. Every part was so beautiful and fluid that you could begin to understand why Hagrid likes them so much. Also, the Second Task of the Triwizard Tournament, which takes place underwater, was so wonderful. I could feel myself swimming with Harry through the challenge.

The DVD itself is terrible, though. There are no special features. That’s right. Nothing. The only options are to view the movie, select scenes, or change the language. The point of the DVD is to give the viewer extra insight into the working of the movie. Unfortunately, Goblet of Fire’s DVD does not even try.

Overall: The movie, though not as strong as the others, is still pretty good. However, the DVD is just plain pathetic.
Final Score: 3 out of 5

Friday, March 17, 2006

PS3 Release Delayed

Sony has cancelled the spring release date for the Playstation 3 (PS3). Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • Sony has delayed release of the PS3 until November.
  • Ken Kutaragi, Sony's president, cites copy protection and other standards for the Blu-ray high definition DVD drive as the reason for the delay.
  • The PS3 will be released at around the same time in Europe, Japan, and North America.
  • The release is around the same time as that of the Nintendo Revolution.

My $0.02: I can see delaying the release for performance issues, but there's no use in delaying for "copy protection". No matter how long you work on preventing bootleg copies of the disks from reaching the market, someone will figure out the process and publish it on the internet. Since Blu-ray is new technology, it needs to get a high level of market saturation as soon as possible or else Toshiba's HD-DVD will take over. I don't care if HD-DVDs can only hold 30 GB and Blu-ray can hold 200 GB. Usually, the next generation technology formats that is common first wins. Also, I think a year is a long time from the Xbox 360's release date. The space of time gives the 360 time to take hold.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Rush Energy Drink Review

Drink: Rush Energy
Official Site:
Drink Rush Energy

Rush is a flat energy drink that tastes like paper. (Don’t ask me how I know what paper tastes like…) There is very little pizzazz about the drink, from the blue Red Bull knockoff can to the generic green color. The energy factor is relatively low. The only thing I liked was the fact the description on the can was in English and Spanish. For the most part, however, Rush simply copies what others have already done.

Summary: Boring, flair less energy drink.
Final Score: 2 out of 5

Friday, March 10, 2006

Game Designers To Be Knighted

Three game designers will be knighted in France. Full article here.

Quick Summary:

  • The French Ministry of Culture will knight Michel Ancel, Frederick Raynal, and Shigeru Miyamoto (the man behind Mario) in the Order of Arts and Letters.
  • The awards will be presented on March 13 at the Ministry of Culture building in Paris.
  • Renard Donnedieu de Vabres, the Minister of Culture, will present the awards.

My $0.02: Seeing official recognition of games as art is very refreshing. Game creators are in the same league as other types of artists. They just don't get recognition outside of their industry because the medium is so new and because video gamers are seen juveniles. Maybe this is the start of a good trend.

...Lost Energy Drink Review

Drink: ...Lost Energy
Official Site:
...Lost Enterprises

Spawned by the same crew that made Monster, Lost is an utterly delicious energy drink experience. The flavor, though similar to that of Monster, is sweeter. The added sweetness makes the drink better than Monster. In addition, the energy factor of this drink is high. You will be bouncing. Also, the drink comes in a really cool can with lots of different graphics on it. I was a little upset to crush and throw it away.

Summary: Chic and tasty.
Final Score: 5 out of 5

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire DVD Sweepstakes

Mugglenet currently has posted a sweepstakes for the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire DVD or a certificate from Noble Collection. Entries are being taken here.

Grand Prize: $300 Noble Collections Gift Certificate
First Prize: $100 Noble Collections Gift Certificate
Second Prize: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire DVD

The contest place on March 15 at midnight EST. I posted this since I thought it would appeal to some of you Harry Potter fans out there. Just as a reminder, the DVD will be released on March 7.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Cattle Dung Used to Make Gasoline

Scientists in Japan said they have found cattle dung could be a new source of gasoline. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • Sakae Shibusawa and his team extracted 0.042 ounces of gasoline for every 3.5 ounces of cow dung.
  • The team added unspecified metal catalysts to dung in a container at 30-atmospheric pressure and up to 300 degrees Celsius.
  • The scientists hope to improve the technology so that it can be used commercially in five years.
  • Japan produces about 551,155 tons of cattle dung each year.
  • A separate experiment showed vanillin, which is used in shampoos and candles, can be extracted from cow dung.

My $0.02: According to my calculations, Japan could extract 1,653,465 gallons of gasoline from all of the cow dung in Japan in a year with the current process. The resourcefulness of such a process is great. I hope that other countries implement similar processes for their cow dung. I'm just wondering what metal catalysts the scientists used to get the gasoline. As far as the vanillin is concerned, I don't think people would be exactly enthusiastic to know that part of their shampoo used to be cow dung.

Additional $0.02 (March 17, 2006): Though I still admire the resourcefulness of such a process, I have now reconsidered my position. Gasoline is already bad enough for the enviroment. When humans inevitably run out of a natural supply of crude oil for making gasoline, then they will be forced to use more environmentally friendly processes. However, if a gasoline supply is still available, people will continue to drive and emit toxic pollutants. Such conversions, therefore, are actually bad for the environment.

Fake Penis Microwaved in Gas Station in Pittsburgh

Last week, a fake penis filled with urine was microwaved at a convenience store. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • Leslye Creighton,41, had her 31-year-old friend, Vincent Bostic, fill a fake penis with his urine so that she could pass a drug test she was taking to get a job.
  • Creighton asked a store clerk at a Get Go! to microwave the fake penis so that the urine would be body temperature and get pass those giving the drug test.
  • Police are unsure why Creighton used a fake penis to hold the urine.
  • Creighton and Bostic are cited for criminal mischief and disorderly conduct.
  • Each could get up to 90 days in jail and a $300 fee.
  • Their defense attorney said his clients want to settle the case by replacing the microwave, since it can no longer be used for food.
  • It is unknown whether Creighton was hired for the job or not.

My $0.02: The first thing about this story that amazes me is the age of these people. 31 and 41?! They're too old for stuff like that! They must have been really high to do this. However, they shouldn't face any criminal charges because they didn't do anything illegal. All they did was accidentally ruin store property. Also, I note that the store clerk who microwaved the fake penis has not been cited for anything. The clerk should be held responsible for this since he or she simply should not have microwaved a fake penis.

Friday, March 03, 2006

First Amendment Rights?! D'oh!

Americans have an easier time naming the five Simpsons than naming the rights of the First Amendment. Full article here.

Quick Summary:
  • 1000 Americans were randomly surveyed at the McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum.
  • Half could name two of the members of the Simpsons family.
  • 28% could name one out of the five First Amendment rights.
  • The same number of people could name all five Simpsons or the three judges from "American Idol".
  • Only 8% could name three part of the First Amendment.
  • Just one person could name all five First Amendment rights.
  • The five First Amendment rights are: freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of press, freedom of assembly, and freedom to go to court.
  • Some people surveyed listed the right the right to drive and the right to have pets.

My $0.02: The results make perfect sense. The only time people are exposed to the list of the First Amendment is when they are in school and are forced to memorize them. People watch the Simpson family all of the time, so they will definitely remember the names. You don't need a survey to know the results of this one. The importance of this article is that it shows fact that as Americans, we don't consider our rights. We just assume them.