Sunday, November 04, 2007

Is It Like the Turtles?

You know how some people say no one has free will, that everything we do is just the product of our upbringing and societal influences. And that the people who brought us up aren't responsible for their behavior either, because they also are the products of their upbringing. And the people who brought them up are just the products of their upbringing, and so on. Well, does it just keep on going and going, all the way back to the first recognizable human? Is there any point at which someone was responsible for his behavior, or is it just upbringing all the way down?

Friday, November 02, 2007

Ranma 1/2 Clerihews

WARNING: "Vogon Clerihews" would have made an equally apprpriate title.

I mentioned Ranma clerihews from when I had clerihews on the brain last week. I would have liked to go back and make one for all the major characters, but the mood is gone and as trying would only inflict more torturous attempts at English rhymes for Japanese names there seems little point and much cruelty. So here they are in all their incomplete "glory".

Saotome Ranma
Had to con Ma;
He found to avoid seppuku
There was little he wouldn't do.

Hibiki Ryoga
Seldom wore a toga.
Wandering around Japan
Left him a lonely man.

Tendo Soun
Is really quite prone
To nervous attacks
And needs to relax.

The life of Tendo Kasumi
May not be your cup o' tea,
But in the house of Soun
She's the sine qua non.

Tendo Nabiki
Could be a bit sneaky.
She had a million and ten
Ways to get yen.

Is quite a guy;
He's filled several shanties
With schoolgirl's panties.

Grandmother Cologne
Seems hardly half-grown,
But her mighty fighting technique
Bests all but the old freak.*

*Yes, I know Ranma once beat her, but he could only do it by--I'm trying to avoid spoilers--doing something drastic that took her completely by surprise. He won't be able to get away with that again, and I think it'll be a few years before he can best her otherwise. Ranma will surely reach that point, but in the meantime, age and treachery (not to mention three hundred years of training) beat youth and enthusiasm, and Cologne remains second only to Happosai. But if you disagree, here's alternate lines for you: "...But her fighting skills/Can give you the chills." Oh, and I'm going by the anime here; I've not read all of the manga.

11/4 ETA: While I was typing this up the other day, I had another spasm which I'm now including to show what letting clerihews enter your mind even for a moment can do to you.

Omar Khayyam
Refused to try yams,
But he professed a great like
For properly grilled pike.

Somebody please stop me.

Overdue Random Thoughts (and a Neologism!)


The National Abortion Rights Action League changing its name to NARAL Pro-choice America was like Kentucky Fried Chicken changing its name to KFC so noone would know it serves fried food.


Just once in a movie I'd like the token female scientist to be a middle-aged, non-hot woman. You know, someone who looks as if she might actually be old enough to have had time to earn all those degrees and do all the research the film claims she has.


If you're whinging about it all the time, you're not really "leading a life of quiet desperation."


Why do so many people refer to "two twins"? I'm not aware of any naturally occurring sets of three twins, so until the geneticists give us that much longed for item of engineered humanity, you might as well save a syllable.


Getting bored watching the trailer is second only to their having changed directors twice on the list of bad signs about an upcoming movie.


Word of warning to the young folk: Whoever said "Life is one long lesson in humility" was really, REALLY not kidding.


Of all the questions that were answered in Deathly Hallows, one question was only made more, ah, questionable: What is the deal with Aberforth and goats?


Better Pickwickian than Pecksniffian.


I wonder if a human who had never heard wolf sounds would, when hearing them at night out in the wilderness, find them frightening. How much is real eeriness and how much is our conditioned expectation?


Think about the line about there coming a time when people will no longer tolerate sound doctrine, preferring instead teachers who tickle their ears, the next time you hear someone saying they can't believe the Church still teaches all that old-fashioned stuff.


Your neologism for the day: "dexternormative". Damn all those right-handed people acting as if it's normal to be right-handed!