Friday, June 18, 2010

Cloning; The most awesome (or boring) thing ever

We’ve all thought about it. How awesome would it be to have an exact replica of yourself? A clone, with every bit of knowledge you have. A doppelganger to keep you company, one that shares the same views about everything.  Would you get along just fine with your clone? Would you try to drink your clone under the table? Would you play horrid jokes on your friend’s minds? Would you skip work, only to actually be at work, without actually being at work? I know I would! How cool would that be?!
 Twice the anime power, with one badge!
As it turns out, it would be really fucking boring. I went to some lab in the Swiss Alps (don’t ask which one, I’m not even sure myself) and spoke with a few scientists and test subjects. I asked a few questions, got more answers than I could even imagine. For the most part the people I spoke to on the test subject end were extremely bitter, and pretty pissed at themselves for being themselves. The scientists seemed to be extremely partial, as they are scientists and were doing the experiments to study the effects of cloning on people. It seems the only effects clones would have on people, is that they piss them off. Seriously.
I asked some questions and I got some pretty surprising answers. The subjects I spoke with told me pretty much the same thing. It was fun at first, really fun. They’d play chess against each other and no one would ever win. They’d jump out from behind a curtain or something when the scientists were doing tests. Walk to the bathroom and then come out from behind a corner. Finish each other’s sentences. Have in depth conversations about everything. And it seems that all got really boring. How much could you surprise yourself? How many books could you talk about if you’ve read them all twice? Part of a good conversation is the debate. Without the debate, you basically are agreeing with the person you’re talking to over and over again. One set of people I spoke with, Adam and Adam, told me about the time they tried to out drink each other. It turns out your clone can drink as much as you can, also, clones of you can fight just the same. So I’m assuming they found all this out the hard way.
The hard way.
Another set of twins I interviewed said it was “Great at first, I could alternate days at work and no one would notice. I could confuse people at stores, by walking into a dressing room and walking up behind them asking to try on the same outfit. Then there was that one time I was at a bar and got completely wasted until they kicked me out, then my clone walked in stone sober and got completely trashed and got kicked out. We played that game for about a week at the same bar, it was awesome.” So I asked about the downsides of it… “Yeah, he always finished my [sentences]” As his clone finished the sentence. “My clone stole my girlfriend. Got her pregnant, and named the baby.” At that point I couldn't help but to rummage around in my back for a shotgun, which I completely forgot to pack. “He also got me fired from work, because he thought it would be a great idea to have ‘pants-less Tuesday’, which needless to say, didn’t go over well with my boss.”

I went and had a conversation with the scientists. They seemed pleased with the overall results, except they got utterly annoyed with it too.” How could you not?” said the lead researcher, “They just play pranks on us all the time. I’m just glad we have the incinera… the patience to deal with them.” The scientists then went on to ask me if I would like to participate. I thought about it for about 17 seconds and decided it would be better not to try it. Then they tried to convince me, coax me into the project with promises of fun and exciting new opportunities. I couldn’t help but look over my notes, thinking if I had spoken to them first, I might have been in the same boat as their subjects. I once again rustled around in my bag for the shotgun, which I’m sure I brought with me. “It must have been one of those damn clones.” I thought to myself. Just before I heard loud bangs come from down the hallway. At that point I changed my plane ticket to the next day. Went to a bar, and tried to forget about everything I had learned. Just then two clones, or twins, I have no idea anymore… Walked into the bar, sat down and started drinking. I screamed and ran. I completely forgot to pay my bill, and now I am no longer allowed into Switzerland.
I'm not missing that much though.


-Ari Racz

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Oops! 4 tactics from zombie movies that fail miserably

At one point in every horror movie throughout the existence of  film there is always at least one death that warrants a face palm. Everyone who has ever watched a horror flick has said to themselves at one point or another , “Why the hell would they do that?”, and you’re right. It was an idiotic move. We have all also realized that the horrible decisions people make don’t always get themselves killed, rather some other undeserving member of the party.

I know that there are many different genres of horror flicks, from psychological to all out gore.  So I’m going to go ahead and focus on zombie movies, only because there are just so many of them. There are many reasons that people die in zombie films, mostly zombies, there are a few others as well. Like advancing the plot…

1. The Escape!

So you have a plan. You think you’ve covered all angles. But have you, really? Sure, you have the escape route, you have the vehicles tricked out into road fortresses. Did you really think it all the way through? You have holes for guns, check. Full propane tanks on board just in case you’re in a jam, check. Please note: Propane is highly explosive. You may not have had much of a choice bringing everything you did, just try to look at what could possible go wrong.


That whole “slot for chainsaws at knee level” thing, not the best idea. Of course it looks good on paper and works well for the most part. But what happens when you only have four feet to move around in with a running chainsaw? Remember there are thousands of abandoned vehicles strewn about in a horrible game of park the car. More importantly, what would happen if say, you got into an accident with a running chainsaw with only four feet to move and a bunch of people right next to you? This:

"Oops. I’ll take the bus next time, thanks."

How could you do it better?

Well, if you’re going to use a chainsaw in a tight space, make sure it is safer than it is. Try building a little cage for the chainsaw so it stays in place. That way, you know what doesn’t happen. Or just don’t use a chainsaw?

2. Studying the zombie

How could this possibly be a bad idea? You’re being a researcher! Learning the strengths and weaknesses of your enemy. An enemy that wants nothing more than to eat you. They can’t feel pain like we do, they don’t take strategic action, they don’t even really think things through. How could it ever outsmart you? That is their biggest strength. They don’t have to think things through. All they have to do is get to you.


Sure, you want to know what makes the zombies tick, how long it takes them to die or whatever. Keeping a zombie around is just asking for trouble. Once again, it looks good on the books. Maybe you’ll learn a thing or two about them. In reality, you’re just keeping a pet, an extremely violent ugly pet. It’s more like the neighbor’s beagle that hates you for pissing on the fence that one time. What happens when the little chain breaks? After all they don’t feel the pain of straining muscles like a regular person. Here’s a bit of an example.

Oh, what a douche. Do not train zombies how to operate anything, ever.

How could you do it better?

Isn’t it obvious? Kill all the zombies. Every one of them.

3. Hiding in that old house

I know what you’re thinking, “Hey, let’s go hide in that house over there!” Sounds like a great plan, everyone needs a place to hide form flesh hungry zombies! Make sure you board up the windows and doors. Turn off the lights, or leave them on, I’m not sure if it even matters. Get to know the house, make an escape plan if you need to. Raid the house for guns and weapons, food and water, porn. Check to see if the phone works. Hey, it looks like you’re well on the way to getting out of a jam!


Yeah, that great plan isn’t looking so good when you have thousands of zombies trick-or-treating on your doorstep. They aren’t taking no for an answer, and they aren’t going to egg your house. They are going eat your face. Sure you boarded up the windows and doors… From the inside. If there is one thing I know, it is how to break down a door from the outside. So do zombies! It would have been a better idea to put the barricades on the outside of the doors and windows, that way the zombies have to push against the boarding pushing against the house. If you push hard enough on a nail it’ll just pop out!

“Crap, they figured out how to push.”

How could you do it better?

I don’t know, but it sure as hell wouldn’t be that.

4. Checking to see if the zombie is dead

It makes sense, make sure you actually killed him. So sneak up real slow, maybe kick him once or twice. Awesome, he isn’t moving after repeated blows to the head from your trusty crowbar! Good work, guy! We agree, it is a smart move to make sure you actually killed it. It is the safe way to go, just so you don’t get surprised later on! Congrats!


Wait, you just beat his head in a little bit with a crowbar. That would definitely put anyone down for a long time. If they were human. If you have ever watched a zombie movie you know you have to utterly destroy the brain. Simply cracking the skull a few times doesn’t really do the trick. Maybe I should be saying congratulations, because you just figured out how to knock a zombie out. Why did you even stop hitting him in the head? Why does he even have a head left? Shouldn’t it be a puddle of goo by now?

"Great, we just brought her back to life."

How could you do it better?

Make sure the zombie is dead. By “make sure” I mean “make sure there isn’t a distinguishable part of a skull within 5 feet of it.”

-Ari Racz

(Thanks Jessee)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Why I Would Survive a Zombie Apocalypse

First of all, fuck you. That’s right. If you were stranded somewhere, and got a hold of a radio… I don’t care. I’m not coming to get you. I’m going to sit my ass in my nicely fortified home, with my crowbar and bat. I would just stay in my house being comfortable with my family. I won’t even go outside if there weren’t any more zombies.

Oh snap.

When you watch a zombie movie, the first mistake anyone ever makes is going to get someone that asked for help. The moment you step outside of that nice little comfort zone you’ve set up, whether it be a mall or a house, you’re in for a world of trouble. I’ll keep as much between me and those zombies as I can. Even if that means you are between me and those zombies. I’ve got everything I already need in my shelter; you can come to me if you want my help.

Then there is the supplies, you obviously don’t have any if you’re asking for my help. I know how to get more supplies, you don’t. I’m not going to risk my life twice as much just to help out someone that can’t help themselves. If you want a can of soup, come get it or go find it. On second thought, fuck you. My soup. You might not have any medical supplies, well tough luck. They stopped producing those when most of the population of the world turned into brain crazy freaks. These supplies I have are all I have, and all I’m going to have. Unless by some miracle you know how to produce mass quantities of aspirin using only baking soda and spit, then by all means, please come in. Otherwise, keep walking, or stumbling… whatever.
Government stumblers.

I have all the weapons I need. I might not own a gun, but I don’t need one. I have a crowbar, a steel pipe, and guts made from concrete. I will beat the bastards. A couple good whacks is all it takes to get your point across. So unless you’re a ninja, or have a gun, or can shoot lasers out of some region of your face I don’t want your assistance. (Then again, if you can do something completely awesome that may entertain us for the rest of the horrid experience; we may have a place for you.) Now that I’ve told you what weapons I have, tell me what weapons you have! A simple kitchen knife? No thanks. A windshield wiper? Hell no. A 12 gauge pump-action Remington shotgun? Get your ass in here already!

Now, part of the reason I don’t want you coming in here is because you can’t. And by can’t I don’t mean “I just won’t allow it”, I mean you literally do not have the ability to get inside my little shelter. Unless of course, I’m the one to let you in. You see, I have barricaded myself in my home. Nothing is getting in through a window, a door, or even a vent. It took me a long time to do all that. It sucked. It took all day nailing this, wedging that, dragging whatever to wherever. If I let you in that would ruin everything I spent days doing. I don’t want to have to do that again, unless of course you have some kick-ass barricading abilities that would serve to outdo even my badassery. I doubt you do. Do you even own a hammer? Do you have any friggin nails? Do you even know what a screwdriver is? What the hell is wrong with you? There’s tons of fucking zombies out there.


Then again, I might want to come into your house. If by some ridiculous twist of fate on the part of the zombies occurs, then I might have to leave. I do have an escape plan, you don’t know that, well you didn’t. So stop reading or something. I know my way to where I’m going to go. No, I’m not going to go to a hospital, or a prison, or a police station, or even a school. Those are the first places people are going to go, instead go somewhere no one would think of going. Go to a nice big warehouse, with heavy doors and no amenities to speak of. No toilet or running water, you can piss in a bucket and gather rainwater. Just make sure you fortify. You always have to fortify. You also always need an escape plan, just in case your awesome fortifying skills aren’t as awesome as you thought they were. (Which mine are)

I totally do not want these people in my house.

So let’s recap. Number one; Fuck you. Number two; Fuck you a bit more. You know what, just fuck you, so stop asking for help and become a zombie already; it is most likely less painful than sucking that damn much.

-Ari Racz (Not a zombie)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

The Gulf Oil Spill; Ideas of madmen!

 There's your problem right there.
At this point, we all know about the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Experts have declared it the worst natural disaster since the Exxon oil spill in Alaska that happened in 1989. So far, 6 million gallons of crude oil have poured into the deep waters of the Gulf. Now, with all that money the experts are tossing around you would think someone could come up with something that would stop it. Nope, not one solution has worked. They are not going to stop there; there have been literally thousands of suggestions. By thousands, I mean a shitload.

Here are a few suggestions people have given BP in order to stay the flow of oil. Some of them are actually decent, while others are just plain batshit insane.

“Hey, let’s shove a big ass cork in it and call it a day!” 

Where as it is a novel idea… It does not make much sense. What happens when you put a cork in a bottle of Pepsi? Is it just going to sit there, happy go lucky? Hell no, that thing will wait five minutes and take out a toddler’s eye. Who came up with that idea anyways? Some wino living in San Francisco? The scary part is that BP is actually considering it, seriously.
 Problem solved.
“Let’s just freeze it, like in that Terminator movie where they froze the bad guy!”

Fuck, seriously? How hard do you think it would be to freeze something underwater? Sure, it’s about five thousand feet underwater, but come on. On company with a product called “Clean Kool” has suggested using the product to freeze the crude oil and then just pick it up later. I might be wrong, but “Clean Kool” sounds like some sort of tobacco product. So maybe BT is teaming up with BP to poison the world one last massive time!
 Let's just call it a day.
“Let’s come up with something called a junk shot!”

“Johnson, that’s genius! Just let me sink this put into my recycled tire putting system.”

Junk-Shot, the act of filling the broken pipeline with shredded tires and golf balls. Don’t get me wrong, it seems like a viable means of plugging crap up. Haven’t environmentalists been complaining for years on end about tires ending up in our oceans? Golf balls too. I mean seriously, who is deciding what we should do with this oil spill. If it were up to me, well it’s not so I’ll just shut up now.
“Why don’t we just throw something on top of it, and then fill that up with something to keep it from making gas!”
That is right. They actually built a 100-ton “dome” to catch everything coming out of the well. I’m not a physics expert or anything, but it seems that all that oil has to go somewhere, and with all the water in there too that might pose a problem. By the way, that dome failed already. So they are going to try a smaller dome and pump ethanol into it. You know, rubbing alcohol. The toxic, flammable, and dangerous chemical? That’s the spirit BP, fill something with something that makes the something that it is full of twice as dangerous. Fucking brilliant!
 That will do the trick.
“At least it is all better than what the Russians told us to do…”
Seriously, I’m not kidding. The Russian government actually told us to “detonate an underwater nuclear warhead directly above the well.” The fuck? Are they just messing with us? Do they just want to have some ammunition (no pun intended) when we actually resort to it? Apparently, not, they have used it on many occasions. So I guess it was just an idea fueled by vodka and rage. Sometimes those ideas work, and sometimes they work the best. Then again, all you have to do is take a look at every monster movie ever to realize it is a horrible idea. Hey, I wouldn’t mind seeing some giant crabs attacking the Gulf Coast oil platforms… Wait, never mind.
 Whoa, just... No.
The bottom line is we need to stop that oil leak. Everything will die! There have been 6 million gallons spewed out of it already. It isn’t slowing down. At 200,000 gallons daily, that is a whole lot of oil. I don’t know about you, but I fucking love seafood. So BP, please get your head out of your ass and get to fucking work. Do your damn job. Seriously. We might as well just throw ninjas at it.

 -Ari Racz

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A memo I ran across the other day

Just click the images for the full size. Trust me, it's worth it.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Worst day ever

Imagine for a moment, the worst day you’ve ever had. So the power goes out in the middle of the night, and of course you had no idea you were supposed to put a backup battery into your alarm clock for just that. You end up being two hours late for work. You lost the big Henderson account, so you knock off a bit early to relax only to find out your tire is flat. Of course you don’t have a spare in the trunk. You forgot your cell phone at your desk and the cleaning crew stole it, sucks so far. Then it gets worse. Your wife, not being able to get hold of you, and when the cleaning lady answers the phone she thinks you’re cheating on her. So she leaves you. Man, that day really sucked.

Worst day ever, right?


Now imagine that entire day consisting of completely different “worst” scenarios. The Mayans predicted the end of days to occur on December 21st 2012. No one is really sure what is going to happen on that day. The only thing they are certain of is “It’s really going to suck.” Remember 1999 when some crazy people thought the World was going to hit a standstill because of some tiny little glitch in banking and commercial software that was just a cut corner? Yeah, the whole “Let’s save some money by only putting in two digits for the date instead of four like we should have.” We all know nothing happened, nothing at all. Well, nothing besides billions of people, drunkenly yelling numbers at the top of their lungs. Aside from that, not a damn thing happened. There have been many different theories on the end of the world. Everyone since Nostradamus has said it at one point or another. It all builds up some pretty heavy speculation. Imagine if the worst day ever happened to everyone, and the events in that day were every disaster scenario that has ever been predicted. Every disaster movie, The Day After Tomorrow, Armageddon, Deep Impact… Aliens? How bad would that be?

Journalism has taken a big hit since the zombie apacolypse

This bad.

Among the theories out there, the most plausible would most likely have to be WWIII. Yes, there are tons of nuclear stockpiles left over from the cold war. Yes, people are assholes and like to shoot other people who they think are assholes. Yes, Dilbert is a retarded comic strip. OK, so that last one was just for me, just pay attention. The basic theory of WWIII is that one person will shoot a nuke at someone, that person will shoot a nuke back, then everyone and their grandma will start poppin caps at bitches and smackin’ ho’s all over the place. We wouldn’t be able to literally destroy the world, but the nuclear fallout in the following months would definitely kill everything. Then it would end up being like Twelve Monkeys, with a tiny fraction of humans left living like slaves and going back in time, kinda like Link in The Legend of Zelda, only without the badassery.

Wow, Navi isn't as nice as I remember.
Another very likely scenario is a meteor impact. Yes it will happen. That’s a guarantee. There are over 5,000 known “near Earth orbit” objects just waiting to punch us dead in the crotch. The dinosaurs were killed off partly due to one. Hell, a meteor made the friggin Gulf of Mexico. So it is pretty much a certainty that we’re going to take one for the team sometime. The only question is when. No, we can’t go the “Armageddon” route and land on the thing, plant a few nukes, and then revel in the amazing glory of the ballsiest men on the planet. (Besides Ben Afflack, fuck that guy) We would have to know about it at least ten years before it hits us. Ten whole fucking years. We would then be able to send a space craft up to the thing, either park on it, or right next to it and then gently nudge it out of orbit. So no “Last minute” macho man in a spacesuit saves the planet crap. If we noticed one tomorrow that was going to hit us in a week, you might as well party like its 1999… Again.

You may or may not have heard of the “Doomsday-Argument”.  Brandon Carter put it forth in 1983; he said our rate of human births is what will be our downfall. That we are among the first 95% of humans to be born. That’s a pretty ballsy claim. It would be like “Children of Men”, only exactly the same. Imagine that, no one being able to have any kids, ever again. I’m sure all you people out there that hate children would be very pleased, but you have to figure everyone would be old, and that would just plain suck. Carter used some mathematics and logic to figure out that the entire human population would be born in about 9120 years from when he made the claim. That the human population will top off at about 1.2 trillion people, 60 billion of which have been born thus far. I call bullshit. Lots and lots of bullshit. How the hell are we not going to keep having kids, seriously, people like to fuck. We all know where babies come from. (And if you don’t, I might just have to show you in the most appropriate way I can think of.)

Then, of course you have the basics. Zombies, 2012, plague, Alien invasion. You can pick or choose whichever you want, there is one thing that is definitely certain. The world will eventually end. Whether it be by the expansion of the sun, another planet getting knocked out of orbit and smacking square into South Africa or whatever.

Well that just sucks.

Ok, so back to the whole personal worst day scenario. (Warning: Minor edits follow)


“Imagine for a moment, the worst day you’ve ever had. So the power goes out in the middle of the night, due to a nuclear warhead hitting the Hoover dam, and of course you had no idea you were supposed to put a backup battery into your alarm clock for just that. You end up being two hours late for work, which you find has been overrun by a horde of bloodthirsty zombies. You lost the big Henderson account, only because of a meteor hitting the satellite office in Philadelphia, instantly killing the prospective client. So you knock off a bit early to try and relax, only to find out your entire car has been stolen by a group of alien teenagers from some planet no one has ever heard of. Of course you forgot your cell phone at your desk, which the zombies are now using as a chew toy, sucks so far right? Then it gets worse. Your wife, not being able to get a hold of you, tries to call you repeatedly only to have the zombies answer the phone. She thinks you’re cheating on her due to the mumbling and moaning on the other end of the line. So she leaves you. Man, that day really sucked. But don’t worry, because there is a giant meteor about to hit the earth somewhere near the equator. “
Well there goes my weekend.

-Ari Racz