My New Misquoted Twitter Account

quotation marksI don’t mean that I have been misquoting my new Twitter account. What I mean is that my new Twitter account is about misquotes – real quotes twisted into something slightly different.

I’ve been enjoying being silly while I write on my second blog, A Listophile’s Haven, which if you haven’t visited yet feel free to go visit it and tell me how funny I’m not. But I have been planning for about as long to start a second Twitter account, also for the sake of some silliness, and now it’s finally here and I have it up and running.

So if you want to see me ruin a bunch of famous quotes (of course you do), check it out by clicking here, or if you’re a Twitter user you can find me at @Misquotationed – feel free to follow me too, and of course send requests for quotes for me to ruin if you like.

Many of the quotes I’ll be misquoting are about things I’m interesting in, such as books, music, coffee and so on. A lot of the quotes will be authors and comedians but also some actors, philosophers and other people will be thrown in for good measure. The point is, there might be some interest in it for you if you already follow my blog, so give it a go!

And if you haven’t added me on my normal Twitter account feel free to do that too, by finding me at @abritishperson or by using the Twitter widget on the side of this page! I normally follow back and I only tweet about rubbish some of the time.

 

Tomorrow is Towel Day!

Don't Panic and Carry A TowelWhat is Towel Day, you ask? Towel Day is a day celebrated on May 25 every year as a tribute to Douglas Adams. Organised just 2 weeks after his death on May 11, 2001, Towel Day has become a worldwide event with happenings in cities all over the world. And all you need to do to show appreciation for the man and his books is to carry a towel around with you all day.

To see the events that are happening in your country, look down the list on the official website for Towel Day. There is a lot happening and it’s a good way to meet other Douglas Adams fans (which are surely some of the coolest people around).

But why a towel, you might wonder? Well, in chapter three of The Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy is a rather in-depth explanation of the importance of towels, which apparently is based on a hitchhiking guide to Europe that Adams read which also stressed the importance of towels. The explanation goes as follows:

A towel, it says, is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. Partly it has great practical value. You can wrap it around you for warmth as you bound across the cold moons of Jaglan Beta; you can lie on it on the brilliant marble-sanded beaches of Santraginus V, inhaling the heady sea vapours; you can sleep under it beneath the stars which shine so redly on the desert world of Kakrafoon; use it to sail a miniraft down the slow heavy River Moth; wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat; wrap it round your head to ward off noxious fumes or avoid the gaze of the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal (such a mind-bogglingly stupid animal, it assumes that if you can’t see it, it can’t see you); you can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.

More importantly, a towel has immense psychological value. For some reason, if a strag (strag: non-hitch hiker) discovers that a hitchhiker has his towel with him, he will automatically assume that he is also in possession of a toothbrush, face flannel, soap, tin of biscuits, flask, compass, map, ball of string, gnat spray, wet weather gear, space suit etc., etc. Furthermore, the strag will then happily lend the hitch hiker any of these or a dozen other items that the hitch hiker might accidentally have “lost.” What the strag will think is that any man who can hitch the length and breadth of the galaxy, rough it, slum it, struggle against terrible odds, win through, and still knows where his towel is, is clearly a man to be reckoned with.

So, if you’re a Douglas Adams fan, make sure wherever you go and whatever you do tomorrow that you take a towel with you and maybe check out events near you. And if you’re yet to read Douglas Adams, tomorrow is as good a day as any to make a start!

Introducing My Second Blog – One for list-lovers

Since January 2012, I’ve been informing thousands of amazing readers all over the world of my ridiculous thoughts and feelings on a range of things, most notably books, music, comedy, and occasionally donkeys. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed doing this and I have no plans to stop it, so don’t worry this blog will continue as usual.

But I have felt a growing desire to start a second blog for some time. Something entirely different to my main blog here, something that would be more creative and more than likely quite silly. I remember growing up as a teenager that I used to read a lot of lists, not only in the form of books like 1001 Books/Movies/Albums to Read/See/Hear before you die, but also in the form of “20 things not to do in an elevator” and other silly ideas like that.

So I decided my second blog would focus on lists. Lists of silly and hopefully funny things that I’ll come up with, but occasionally something more interesting or serious too. But mostly I plan to write fun lists, and most importantly I’ll be writing all of them myself rather than just reposting stuff already out there on the internet.

The new blog is at alistophilehaven.wordpress.com mostly because my blog is called A Listophile’s Haven (I just dropped the apostrophe and s from the url). Right now it only has one list and the about page has been filled out, but I will be adding more lists over the next few days before slowing down to a couple of posts a week on there (as I have already committed myself to a minimum of three on here).

Go visit my new blog, let me know what you think of it, follow it, leave me comments and suggestions if you want, and please if you like it share it with others and spread the word. I’m quite excited to see what I can make of it, and I hope if nothing else I can put a smile on your faces or maybe even make you laugh!

A Listophile's Haven home page

The Illustrated Guide to my first day of Camp NaNoWriMo

As many of you know, yesterday I began both Camp NaNoWriMo and NaPoWriMo – two crazy writing challenges that will keep me busy throughout April, and that which many of you are also attempting. I hit both goals – write a thousand words for the former and a poem for the latter, but I still had a bit of creative energy left so I attempted to draw an illustration to go with part of my story.

Please keep in mind I haven’t drawn much for about 15, 16 years (since I was about 11), so it’s not amazing. Also I only spent a few minutes on it. But mostly it was for a bit of fun, and to reveal a random detail about my first short story that will in no way explain what the heck my story is about. So without further ado…

 

It reads: "Today he had a specific mission - release his droppings on a Mr Evan Wigbottom." Taken from the second paragraph of my first short story (as yet untitled).

It reads: “Today he had a specific mission – release his droppings on a Mr Evan Wigbottom.” Taken from the second paragraph of my first short story (as yet untitled).

How is everybody else going with their various creative projects?

The Hyperbole and a Half book – when great blogs make great books

Hyperbole and a Half Book CoverIf you don’t know what Hyperbole and a Half is, you probably should go there right now by clicking on the link half a sentence ago. It’s an amazing blog by Allie Brosh in which she tells tales from her life in a hilarious fashion accompanied by drawings done on Microsoft Paint and done badly on purpose because it’s kind of funny. Her blog is award-winning, and her depictions of her own experiences with depression have been greatly praised by many experts for conveying it so accurately (part two of this blog, which appeared after over a year’s absence, had more than a million hits on the first day apparently).

Upon her return she announced she was working on a book, which would comprise of some of her funniest stories from her blog while also including several new ones (which aren’t on her website). Sometimes when bloggers or cartoonists make books, they don’t have much new content, or at least nothing  really enticing to make it warrant actually buying the book. But this case is an exception – if you like the blog you must buy this book. Please. Just do it. You won’t regret it.

The stories she has chosen from her blog to include in this collection include two of my favourites, The God Of Cake and Party, as well as both parts of the Depression posts (which you should go read on her website if you haven’t already). Some of her new tales include more stories from her childhood, more stories about her frighteningly simple dogs including one that is addressed to them in the hope of helping them survive normal situations in life (with a hilarious Q&A section with questions from the dogs themselves), and more reflections on her own identity as an adult. The new material is just as good as her best work, and just as funny and insightful, and it’s clear she put a lot of effort into this book and didn’t just rush it to try and get it out on the shelves already.

What I particularly love about a lot of Brosh’s writing, apart from how funny it is, is the fact that so much of it is relatable. Sure, not everybody has dogs quite so lacking in the brain department as hers, but dogs are odd creatures who do bizarre things for no reason and she explores that phenomenon so well. Not everybody has experienced what she has, but a lot of people have, and those who haven’t have at the very least probably shared some of the thought processes she explains in this, despite how seemingly ridiculous they are. And everybody can relate to the insane childhood stories – we all probably have similar memories of our childhoods whether we remember them or not. There is something impressive though about the way that she can make these stories seem so much like something all of us have been through and at the same time clearly unique and personal, with her own distinct voice shining through both the words and the drawings.

If you have ever read this blog you must buy this book, as you will love it. If you have never read her blog, go read it first, then buy the book, as you too will love it. If I ever wrote a book half as funny as this one, I would be over the moon!

What are your thoughts on the blog Hyperbole And A Half?

What other blogs turned into books have you read that you would recommend?

International Talk Like A Pirate Day!

Pirate-skullAhoy there me hearties, it be that time o’ year again that people all ’round the world speak in the tongue of the pirates, arrr!

September 19 is International Talk Like A Pirate Day, and what started as a small joke online over ten years ago has since turned into a huge international phenomenon. At work today, myself and several colleagues dressed up as pirates (I must confess, they went to a lot more effort than I and I was really quite impressed) and went around spouting out pirate talk to anybody who would listen. I remember over 10 years ago doing the same thing, only then I was the student, not the teacher, but it is funny how I still find myself joining in on these shenanigans.

It also made the news here in Australia, particularly on the breakfast shows on both the radio and television, so it’s nice to see the word spreading. If you don’t believe me that it’s a real thing, check out the website here. This website has everything you need, from information about the day itself, advice on speaking like a pirate, as well as some games and things like that.

There are other things you can do too. If you’re on Facebook, there is an English Pirate language that is well worth switching to as it might extend your pirate vocabulary (mine has been set to pirate talk for several years now, I forget what the proper Facebook terminology is). You can check out this list of the most terrifying pirates in history. And you can listen to a pirate themed music album called “Like A Cannonball To The Ocean Floor…” by the (now broken-up) band Sounds Like Chicken, which I reviewed here.

Whatever you do, make sure you talk in pirate to someone today, and help spread the news about a day that the whole world can have a bit of fun together. Or else ye be walking the plank…

Replies to Spam Comments #2

If you don’t know what I’m doing or why I’m doing it, look at this first post in this series. Otherwise, read on for more replies to spam comments.

Comment 1

From Marvella:
“I appreciate, lead to I discovered just what I was previously having a search for. You’ve ended my four day lengthy hunt! God Bless a person man. Have a fantastic day. Bye”

My Reply:
“Marvella, out of curiosity, what is it you were ‘previously having a search for’? A four day lengthy hunt is quite lengthy, and too lengthy not to illuminate me as to what it was, but just to suggest that you found a thing. I mean, I could write to you and tell you I found a thing, but I don’t.
Yours blessedly, Person Man.”

Comment 2

From Prasouda:
“You produced some decent points there. I looked on the internet for that issue and located most individuals goes along with along along with your internet website.

My Reply:
“Most individuals goes along with along along? Go home, you’re drunk.
Yours along, Along Along.”

Comment 3

From Code de la Route:
“Rattling good information can be found on blog . “I don’t know what will be used in the next world war, but the 4th will be fought with stones.” by Albert Einstein.”

My Reply:
“Dear CDLR, what constitutes ‘rattling good information’? Is it information so good it causes a small earthquake entirely within the place the information is being consumed? Is it information accompanied by a small band who use only rattling instruments like, I don’t know, a maraca? Or maybe the completely random and out of context quote by Einstein is the rattling information? Speaking of which, do you know that person from the last spam comments post I made? Maybe you two are philosophical buddies or something?
Yours rattlingly, Not A Philosopher”

Comment 4

From Related Site:
“choice. Anyhow; in case you might be a youthful driver along with new on the road existence, then it is possible to definitely horn”

My Reply:
“horned on the road existence once, but I wasn’t a youthful driver at the time, and I didn’t feel a need to finish my”

Comment 5

From Free Background
“Today, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iPad and tested to see if it can survive a 25 foot drop, just so she can be a youtube sensation. My apple ipad is now destroyed and she has 83 views. I know this is entirely off topic but I had to share it with someone!”

My Reply:
“HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I know that was entirely mean, but I just had to laugh at someone.
Yours laughingly, HAHAHAHAHA.”

Comment 6

From Read This:
“Now, whilst I had been at finish the same job, my brother stole my personal iphone and also tested to determine if it may possibly endure a thirty ft . drop, just consequently she can be a youtube experience. My ipad by apple is now broken and she gets 83 landscapes. I’m sure this can be entirely away subject nevertheless I necessary to share it with somebody!”

My Reply:
“Hey, you’ve just plagiarised Free Background, but written it in terrible English. You know plagiarism is bad, right? Like, you should go sit in the naughty corner and hang your head in shame. Also, you are speaking of your brother but then said “she gets 83 landscapes”…first of all nobody gets 83 landscapes, how greedy, and secondly, go apologise to your brother for calling him a girl. Then apologise to everybody for using any gender in a derogatory manner, you thoughtless person.
After you’ve done this, go away.
Yours unplagiarised, Eleventy Landscapes Strong.”

Okay, I’m done for a while on these spam comments, I think. If anybody has spam comments they would like me to reply to, though, feel free to leave them as a comment on here! 

Replies to Spam Comments #1

SpamI’m sure we’ve all had a few spam comments appear on our blogs from time to time, and luckily the spam filter on WordPress is good enough to block all of them. I’ve found as my blog has grown in views, the spam comments have grown exponentially, now doubling my normal comments in number. And, more importantly, some of them are really quite funny and entertaining.

So, even though I delete them and will continue to do so, I thought it would be fun to pretend to reply to them, by posting the spam comment and my pretend replies on here. I’ll only post a few for now, with more to come later. Enjoy!

Comment 1:

From Yeast Infection No More (seriously? Where do they get these names):
“You, my pal, ROCK! I found exactly the explanation I already searched everywhere and simply couldn’t find it. What a great site.”

My reply:
“Dear Yeast Infection No More,
Thank you for your kindness regarding my ability to rock, or possibly my awesomeness – you didn’t really elaborate upon this so I’ll just make assumptions. I’m glad you found the explanation you searched everywhere for, were you playing a game of Hide and Seek with it perhaps? How fun.
Yours unyeastily, A Small Rock”

Comment 2:

From Find Out More:
“Howdy! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site? I’m getting sick and tired of WordPress because I’ve had issues with hackers and I’m looking at alternatives for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.”

My Reply:
“Dear F. O. More,
Did you even pay attention to the web address of this very site upon which you choose to scribble your unobservant ramblings? Clearly not. Also, if you used to blog, surely it would be easy for an internet savvy person such as yourself to find another blogging platform, of which there are many. There are many clever websites which can assist in your quest, namely Google, Google, Google, Yahoo I guess, and Google.
Yours sincerely, Knows More Than You”

Comment 3:

From Spider Solitaire Freeware:
“my brother has a gambling challenge and he just burned a thousand bucks in 1 night-”

My Reply:
“Dear SS Freeware,
Why did he do that? He’s not very good at gambling if he just sets fire to the money – did you explain to him that’s not how it all works? That is a ridiculous amount of money to set fire to, as well. What a silly person.
Yours disappointingly, Money Extinguisher.”

Comment 4:

From San Antonio Bail Bonds:
“I like this net blog extremely considerably so significantly great data. “It’s a poor sort of memory that only operates backward.” by Lewis Carroll.”

My Reply:
“Dear SABB,
Thank you, I also like my blog extremely considerably so significantly. Matters of the memory always contribute to interesting debate by various experts in the field, but I don’t really see what this has to do with your comment or Lewis Carroll. I thought the idea of quotes was to keep them relevant to the topic at hand? Of course, I have been wrong about these things before. But I’m probably right about this.
Yours quotefully, Abraham “You can never trust quotes on the internet” Lincoln”

Comment 5:

From Hockey Jersey:
“Utterly written topic material , Truly enjoyed hunting through .”

My Reply:
“Dear H Jersey,
My topic material is “utterly written” you say? Not a bit written, or mostly written, but utterly written? And all this time I thought I was just drawing things, but it turns out those things I was drawing were letters which then went on to form words, sentences, paragraphs – entire worlds in fact developed from these tiny little pictures. What a stunning revelation for me. I always wanted to know I was utterly writing.
Yours utterly, Written”

Okay, that’ll be enough for now. I expect I’ll do this again sometime soon!

Terrible (and funny) trailers for films that shouldn’t exist

Have you ever watched a movie that was so bad it was good? I know I have, and there are plenty out there that fit under this description. But then there are some movies that are so ridiculous, you can hardly believe anybody even bothered to spend the time or money to create them. Here are some trailers for some of these films.

Rubber

You know what would be a great idea for a horror movie? Anything except the story of a killer rubber car tyre that leaves a trail of death and destruction behind it. Which is essentially what this film is about, believe it or not. While I laughed during the trailer, I can’t imagine having the patience to watch this film the whole way through.

Titanic II

A film about a second Titanic ship that sails a century after the first one, and pretty much suffers the exact same fate. Laziest story ever, and I just hope they didn’t think anybody was actually going to take this one seriously. It looks pretty terrible no matter how you approach this movie.

Sharktopus

When a scientist creates a mutated animal that is essentially a cross between a shark and a giant octopus as a new weapon, it goes on a killing spree and…that’s about it, really. I did nearly choke with laughter the very first time I saw this, a couple of years ago. This is one I would watch just for the laughs.

What terrible movies (or trailers) have you seen? Do you ever watch movies just because they look so bad they might be good or funny?

My favourite comedians #4: Shaun Micallef

It has occurred to me that while all the comedians I have talked about thus far have large followings in Australia, none of them are actually Australian. Time to rectify this, by introducing one of my absolute favourites, Shaun Micallef. And what better way to begin this blog post than to show one of the funniest clips from my favourite of all his television shows, The Micallef Programme. The sketch is known as one of the (several) “tilted room” sketches, in which the room is tilted (but the camera angle is such that the viewer can’t tell except for the way gravity controls objects in the room):

While The Micallef Programme was the first series in which he was the star of the show, as it combined a mix of sketches and fake interviews (though often with real celebrities), Micallef’s comedy career began a few years earlier, in the mid 1990s on the infamous Full Frontal, where many other well known Aussies got their start (including Eric Bana, who is known to most of the world as a fairly big actor, but to Australians is known for his ridiculous characters from his comedy days). The show ran for several seasons, and Micallef was  a dominant force on it very quickly, appearing in many of the show’s must loved sketches. Many of them would simply be making fun of aspects of Aussie culture and politics, such as this sketch in which he made fun of the British host of a show called Gardening Australia:

He went on to make several shows of his own, following up The Micallef Programme with Micallef Tonight, and later Newstopia, before becoming the host of the hugely successful Talkin’ Bout Your Generation, a family-aimed quiz show which turned him into a household name across the country. While long time fans (including myself) felt that he was not at his peak during these years, he did garner a lot of new fans, and was still very funny. Perhaps more importantly, he picked up awards for his work, gaining the recognition he deserved. And then he gave this hilarious speech upon winning one of his awards:

As you can probably see, he has a very unique style of comedy that is hard to actually pinpoint, but which really works. He has this naturally funny charisma – he barely has to open his mouth and people begin chuckling just from the anticipation of what he might possibly say. He has the ability to be very improvisational at times, which adds an air of inspired lunacy to his work. Lately he’s been working on a couple of projects, including a political affairs satire show called Mad As Hell which has been a return to form for him, showing he has many years left in the world of comedy. This last clip, however, is from his appearance on the last episode of a talk show fellow comedian Adam Hills briefly hosted in Australia, where for pretty much the entire 8 and a half minute segment Micallef just takes over and barely gives Hills a chance to get a word in. It seems to become funnier as it goes on – the last couple of minutes are fantastic, so make sure you watch it the whole way through.

What are your thoughts on Shaun Micallef? I’m particularly curious to hear thoughts from other Australians compared to people from elsewhere in the world!