Friday, May 11, 2007

Imagine if Politics Were a Play...

Extremely talented UK-based author and Nematode Expert Extraordinaire, John Lambshead, has a discussion forum on his publisher's site, Baen's Bar, where he discusses a variety of things. One of them, naturally, is the current and yet NEVER-ending departure from office of His Toniness (outgoing British PM Tony Blair). Here's what John said yesterday on the subject:
Subject: Great Leader resigns, the masses weep
Author: John Lambshead
Date: 10 May 2007 05:11 AM

I am sitting at home watching His Toniness transported in a police cavalcade to his private jet, where he intends to travel up to his constituency in Sedgefield and announce his retirement.

Motorways are being blocked, queues backing up so the great man is not inconvenienced in any way by, for example, waiting ten seconds at a junction. He appears to be copying Princess Diana’s funeral procession.

He has gone completely barking mad. According to various leaks he is now obsessed by what he refers to as his legacy and has his massed ranks of spin doctors and PR muppets have apparently planned triumphal processions across the English countryside like Queen Elizabeth the First after the Armada.

Another story is that he intends to follow in the tradition of all fallen CIA-backed banana-republic dictators and flee to America. Apparently, it is widely believed among Blair’s people that Americans are prepared to pay silly money to hear him speak. After ten years of listening to him blather endlessly on British TV, he would be hard pressed to extract a clipped groat from the British people.
God Save us, no! Please!! Keep him over on your side of the Pond :-)
Apparently the Blessed Gordon, the Prince o’er the water, is about to be elevated by acclamation of the masses, well the Brownites, to the purple. This is going to be interesting as he is very Scottish and has a seat in a Scottish constituency. The Scots have just voted the Scottish Nationalists in as the largest party in the Scottish Parliament, another of the great leaders little misjudgements, and around 55% of the English in a recent poll wanted to scrap the Act of Union and dump Scotland (the percentage is higher among the young), another scintillating part of the Great Leader’s ‘Legacy’.

John Lambshead
Lucy's Blade

Today, John drew the following hilarious analogy between attending a play in the theater and His Toniness handing over the PM's office.
Subject: Britain's strange Alice in Wonderland politics
Author: John Lambshead
Date: 11 May 2007 04:37 AM

Britain's strange Alice In Wonderland politics continues.

Gordon Brown, our brooding chancellor, has been acclaimed Great Leader by the genuflecting masses (of Labour MPs) so he has now launched his ‘leadership campaign’.

Promotion first, campaign afterwards – said the Queen.

Meanwhile the Sky News poll shows that 86 % of what is admittedly a self selected group don’t want Brown as our new Great Leader.

Imagine sitting through a play that went on far too long. You bought the tickets at great expense on the basis of massive hype which utterly failed to live up to the reality. The script was bad, the actors fluffed their lines, the stage props kept falling over, the interval queue was too long, the ice creams poor quality and overpriced, and they slapped a ticket surcharge on you in the third act.

Your bum is numb, the actors are repeating themselves and all you want to do is go home. The curtain finally, oh thank you Lord, comes down and you start looking for your coat and gloves while the ‘star’, who looks much older than his publicity shots, insists on taking too many encores while telling the audience how wonderful he is.

Then just when you think it is all over and that they are going to unlock the exits, the bloody understudy leaps on stage, tells you his name is Gordon, and insists that they are going to repeat the whole damn thing again with himself as the star because of some agreement he made in 1995.

John Lambshead
Lucy's Blade

For more good times, buy John's newly-released book, Lucy's Blade (it's a fantasy, mystery and dark comedy all rolled into one, depending on how you look upon demons and alternate history - read a sample here) If you're in the UK and can make it, check out a book signing he's doing with Chris Dolley (details on Chris Dolley's LiveJournal)

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Art Brings Life to Dead Trees

My eldest sister, the "Fine Artist" from Arizona, sent me this a month ago, about a month after the work was complete. I'm only just now looking into it and WOW, check this out.
A chainsaw artist commissioned by Mayor A.J. Holloway has transformed four standing dead trees in the center median of U.S. 90 in Biloxi into a sculpture garden, teeming with pelicans, egrets, seagulls, a blue marlin and a shark. Artist Dayton Scoggins is scheduled to complete his four days of sculpting at the end of the day Thursday, March 8, 2007. Holloway, meantime, may approach the City Council to hire Scoggins to create more works of art from other standing dead trees in the center median

Just four days to create these amazing sculptures. And with a chainsaw, no less!!

You can watch a couple of videos of the artist at work or see the "Before" and "After" photos linked off the Town of Biloxi's Your City at Work pages or read more about the project.

The artist should have gotten more than $4000 (only $1000 a tree) for this work. I simply cannot believe the detail achieved in some of these was done with a chainsaw!! I say again, WOW.

I also wish there were a better shot of the tree with the pelicans and seagulls--there's only this closeup of the pelican with a fish in its mouth, but at the top of the vertical, it appears there's a really nicely-done seagull which doesn't appear in any of the photos. Someone in Biloxi needs to take (and post to the web) some better photos. This art is worthy of it.