In Memoriam: All The Cool Dead Things

Lots of cool things are dead now. It’s a crying shame really, because some of them would have been great fun to have around. Without sounding too twee, I sometimes like to imagine a world in which all those dead things never ended up dying at all.

The Moa

Great name; great bird.

Would You Give Up Sleeping if You Could? 5 of the Best Hypothetical Questions

I love hypothetical questions. They not only make you think in a critical way that can challenge the very core of who you think you are, but they can also help you uncover facets of other people’s personalities that you may have never known existed.

I’ve got five of my self-made favourites listed below, and I’ve included a poll for each so you can see how your own preferences compare to the common pleb.

What Things Do We Do Today That Will be Looked Upon With Disgust by our Grandchildren?

Despite what religious folk might tell you, what’s right and what’s wrong is no fixed or written affair. Indeed, even fair-spirited Christians have shifted the goalposts about a thousand times in the last millennium to ensure their holy doctrine concerning murder, homosexuality, slavery and other ethics have shuffled along to keep up with societal changes.

I find it weird how people look back to times gone by and vilify those seemingly advocating attitudes we would shun in the modern era.

Think how slave owners, fascists, wife beaters and colonists are demonised in Hollywood fiction and the minds of most people.

Why I Hate Humans

There’s a computer game I’ve been playing called Rust. It’s basically this barren island full of harsh rock formations and sparse forests, littered with a few hundred players from around the world.

Each has nothing but a stone and a flaming stick, to see better at night.

Hacking away at trees and caving in the skulls of wildlife (with the stone) give players scant resources to craft together some rudimentary rag clothing and perhaps a couple of primitive tools.

What Does Trill Mean?

My girlfriend asked me what trill is after having seen it on some t-shirts. She’s quite insistent that it’s a verb, but I’m also too old and out-of-touch to know what it means.

Luckily, as a researcher and writer, I’m able to publish my investigations here. If you can’t be bothered to read, just look for the words written in bold.

Why is Transhumanism So Controversial?

Plenty of fiction explores the ethics of modifying that template of a body that we receive when we’re born. Yep, we can mess about with it - applying tattoos, piercings, dyes and other alterations -  but ultimately we’re stuck with the genes we’re assigned.

Gattaca, Aeon Flux, Soldier, Deus Ex; the list of entertainment that analyses the what if ramifications of genetic manipulation is a long one, and much of it concludes it’s not actually a good thing after all.

Men are Gross, Women are Fine

I walked across the level, a small grass park in Brighton, the other day. It was in the glorious sun, and was thusly filled with scores of pasty Brits getting boozey and flinging Frisbees around, as pasty Brits are wont to do once the sun comes out.

I watched as all the women cack-handedly threw the Frisbee to the gentlemen they were playing with and thought to myself, not for the first time: ‘why do girls throw like a girl?’

Don't Be Cruel; Systematically Slaughter Animals Instead

I like both Georgia and Boo lots by the way.

So I was sitting there, right, and there’s this little dog. I don’t know what type of dog it is, it’s like a little Cesar dog or whatever. I’ll look it up. SPECIALLY DESIGNED FOR SMALL DOGS. No. Yes. Would you like CesarSingapore to be your default Cesar destination? © 2012 Mars, Incorporated and its ...

Yeah it’s a Cesar dog. It’s called Boo and it’s often in Instagrammed pictures with accompanying irrelevant hashtags #like #this that you can see #here. #skyscraper #dreamdog

Is it Rude to Ask Political Persuasion?

The West is a liberal democracy. The fundamental heart of citizenship in such a country is each man’s right to vote. It’s the blood that pumps through the arteries of society and everyone is fully entitled to their opinions. That’s the system.

If you don’t have an opinion, then fine, but opting out is as much of a statement about your political views as voting for BNP is. Your political vote is as close to a personal worldview summary as you can get.

The Catch 22 of Liberalism

You may have heard me trumpet the concept of liberal capitalism before, as someone who possibly lives on the right end of the political spectrum, and also one of the most liberal people you could meet.

In politics, especially in America but also over here, those viewpoints are apparently inequatable. You can’t support gay marriage, secularism and environmentalism as well as refuting socialism, affirmative action and colonial apologism.

Anyway, as someone who exists somewhere around there, I find myself in a never ending loop of liberalism. It goes something like this: