Monthly Archives: October 2009

2009 Toronto Zombie Walk Pictures

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Here’s some of my pictures from today’s Toronto zombie walk (torontozombiewalk.ca), another great job by Thea — who got engaged today at the beginning of the walk. I did almost the same outfit as for the special edition walk, and again we won a prize for it… I think I have to come up with something new for next time if I want to keep on getting these awesome gift bags. It was a huge turnout again (5,000 people I’m guessing — and probably at least 400 photographers), which is no surprise since as far as I know Toronto is the city that invented zombie walks, and is of course also the home of George Romero and where many recent zombie movies have been filmed. The photos of individual zombies below are mostly Nefarious’s favorites, as she went around asking for pictures of people — and many were asked of her in return. It was nice to bump into some people who knew me as well.

FBI targeting right-wing terrorists via tattoos?

I’m posting this out of political interest, not as a body modification story.

A friend recently sent me this handout that was given to them by an FBI agent that visited their studio, asking their assistance in tracking potential terrorists. From my read of it, it looks to me like they’re not targeting islamofascists, but neo-nazi gangs, survivalists, pagan right-wingers, and the patriot movement. Some of the things to look out for are quite interesting:

  • People who pay with cash – This one is interesting, because it’s a recurrent paranoid theme that one of the reasons that we’re moving to credit/debit cards and away from cash is so that people can be more easily tracked.
  • People with missing fingers/hands, chemical burns, strange odors or bright colored stains on clothing – No, it’s not looking for amputation fetishists, nor is it looking for slovenly people… clearly their interest here is bomb makers.
  • Comments re: anti-US theory, radical theology, racist statements, cryptic warnings, etc. – Good luck on that one, guys… There are an awful lot of kooky people who have these ideas that walk into a tattoo shop, and most of them are completely harmless.
  • Groups of people getting the same tattoo – Targeting both best friends, frat boys and sorority sisters, and gangs I guess. In any case, the iconography of tattooing is so repetitive that I think you’d get a lot of false positives.
  • People who request unusual methods of tattooing or placement of tattoos which could allow the concealment of extremist symbols – This is interesting, because I’m not sure what they mean by “unusual methods of tattooing”… Given the second part of the statement I guess they might mean things like UV ink. But I didn’t think that right-wing extremists really went out of their way to unusually hide their tattoos. They usually just get them on non-public skin, so this seems a little “off”.

The FBI go on to ask the assistance of tattoo artists in interviewing people who come in, and asking them questions about who they are and what they’re about, and reporting anyone who seems suspicious. I think that the FBI don’t realize that by-and-large, extremists who want tattoos go to artists who are to some degree friendly to those ideas, so all this action is going to achieve is making people distrust the government even more, and won’t result in a single terrorist catch. But I suppose that’s been the counter-productive way of the government since 2001, and before as well.

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New Toys, New Trips

While I was in Costa Rica, we ordered a bunch of coloured contacts. Caitlin got two black and one white, and I got a pair of “angelic” (light cyan), “darth” (yellow with a fiery red halo), and a white pair as well, all in my prescription. In the picture below I’ve got in the “angelic” ones, and Caitlin of course is wearing a single black one. They look much better in real life than in the picture. Tomorrow I’ll wear the red ones, and I can’t wait to see how they look. It was fun coming home to some cool stuff waiting in the mail, and we went out this morning on a shopping expidition and picked up a nice winter outfit (boots, jacket, mitts) for Nefarious, and one for Caitlin too, and an Olympus Stylus Tough-8000 — with a four year warranty, which I normally don’t bother with but makes sense here — to replace the one I broke.

If you haven’t already done so, if you skip to the next page and the few after it, you can see the many pictures I posted from our trip. I was just looking at the discount trip sites, and I found tons of great vacation packages at insane discounts — $250 for all-inclusive week long Caribbean vacations including airfare… again: for $250. WTF. How is that even possible? Seriously, I could just go on vacations non-stop and my life would be cheaper. Something I must consider!

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In sadder, more embarrassing news, I have lice and also picked up lice shampoo this morning. It’s been getting passed around by all the kids and seems to never go away. I am sad about it because I have not shampooed my hair since last December — in a quest for hair health, not for general hobo chic — and was hoping to make it a full year. I did rinse it and condition it — just no shampoo. So close…

Other than that, it’s raining today, and the Toronto zombie walk is tomorrow… Rain is about the worst thing for a make-up heavy event like that, but I was very relieved to see that the forecast is quite good. I can’t wait, and will probably start working on my outfit today, building a better head-cage for the same “captive zombie” thing we did last time. I’ll post pictures tomorrow evening of course.

Update: I popped in the “Darth” lenses and snapped a quick photo:

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And, finally, the white lenses:

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Oh, reaaaaaally?

So I just got back from a wonderful vacation where on the whole I was offline — especially most recently in Kuna Yala territory, where communication seemed limited to walkie talkies and we didn’t have telephone, let alone internet. A nice change, really. I was a little surprised to see this little gem from BME’s new owner (and also my ex as I’m sure the drama-minded know) when I got back:

It’s easy for people to say I “stole” the business I have been running since 2001 but you can’t steal things when you pay for them. I just wish other people in this situation were man enough to admit how much they were paid to settle our problems and that if I could publish the exact number it would require A LOT of zeros.

As far as comments people have made in the previous posts about BME 2.0, the current software that runs the site will no longer function after 2010 due to programming errors and inadequacies. It has to be rebuilt. This is a rebuild I’ve been working on now for two years coming in December. Hopefully it will be completed by then.

WTF?

I won’t even get into the fact that I barely even knew Rachel in most of 2001 (heck, I was still dating Caitlin when Brian and I founded the Bmezine.com LLC), so I don’t see how she could have been running BME, and that she didn’t step into a management role in dealing with banking issues and hosting — which may be running a business, but are quite distinct from running BME as a sociological entity, which she didn’t do until 2008 — until 2004. These sorts of date-based deceptions have been tossed around endlessly in court, and it’s so tiresome to hear the same old lie raised over and over and over.

I also won’t get into debating “steal”, but when you take something by force from someone, and then bankrupt them by throwing lawsuit after lawsuit at them paid for by an ultra-wealthy boyfriend, and leave them with a choice of “winning” but going bankrupt from the legal bills, or “selling” the site, then while the word “bought” may be legally true, it’s a little more sticky than that.

Anyway as to the main point, the separation/BME deal was made secret not by me, but by Rachel, and I don’t really appreciate posts by her saying I am not “man enough” (whatever that means) to reveal the details of the deal. Significant steps were taken by her to hide the details of the deal and the highly unpleasant steps that were taken to make it happen, presumably because if the public knew what happened, they would be very soured on the whole thing. I would be perfectly happy to see the whole thing be made public, and it’s completely unfair and untrue to slag me publicly saying that I’m somehow hiding it when I’m not the one taking legal steps to keep everything secret. If she wants to insult me in blog posts, fine, but let me be real clear on this: release the non-disclosure type clauses and I’m happy to see everything go public. Doesn’t bother me one bit, especially considering that’s something I wanted from day one, because I wanted the public to see what was happening.

Second of all, as far as “programming errors and inadequacies”, yes, it’s true that the BME maintenance software will have problems in 2010 if — and only if — it’s not updated with a few dozen lines of code. They weren’t written yet because a half decade before it was required, I didn’t feel the need. It’s not an “error”, as it’s completely anticipated and planned for, and I certainly didn’t write the software thinking that I would suddenly not be able to maintain it any more or it would have to be handled by people unfamiliar with my code! Give me a break. It’s especially disingenuous given that I’ve gone out of my way to help the new programmers — who have taken two years and have yet to produce a stable product — with tons of tools and documentation and software to convert the databases. I spent weeks before my vacation doing free work for BME in order to be helpful (well, that’s not entirely true — I also did it as a trade to ensure that I didn’t have to have a legal fight to take Nefarious on the vacation). To now turn around and attack me is pretty low.

I’m sorry Rachel if people are giving you a hard time because you’re having trouble running the site, and I’m sorry some of them are being mean, but FFS, I was on vacation and these unpleasant reactions have nothing to do with me and a whole lot more to do with you and your decisions, and I have done everything I can to help the site out in spite of all the terrible things that have been done to me, and I really wish you’d drop having to attack me publicly just because someone makes a “BME was better in the Shannon era” comment. Launch your “BME 2.0”, make it your own site and stop whining about the one I envisioned and did my best to build, and do something that you can be proud of. Constant bickering and never ending anger aren’t what you should be wasting your time on. You have enough on your plate with a failing business that needs saving, to say nothing of your health issues. I have a ton of respect for your intelligence and potential that I saw ages ago and sadly see so rarely in recent years, but you’re squandering it with this negative obsession with me, and obsession with lashing out at bigger and bigger swaths of the community that made BME great. Take a hard look at yourself and your life and think about the things that I respected in you, and try and bring those things out again. They’re the things that make you special and the things that can help you turn all this around. What you’re doing now is beneath you.

Trip Photos Posted

We just got back this evening, and I’ve had a chance to upload photo galleries to all the previous entries on our time in Costa Rica and Panama and in Kuna Yala territory. If you’re interested, just take a second flip through those entries — I cut down the number of entries per page temporarily because there are so many photos. We really had a wonderful time, but it definitely is nice to be back home. I am, however, already planning our next trip!

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