RuPaul's Drag Race season 9 recaps

The shadiest Drag Race recaps on the web. Get ready to death drop, queens!

The Bachelorette Australia recaps

One woman, 14 desperate men, mucho LOLs. Oh, and Osher Gunsberg.

The Bachelor Australia recaps

Sequins, spray tans and sex - it's season 3 of the world's stupidest dating show.

RuPaul's Drag Race Season 8 recaps

YASS, HUNTIES! Every episode of season eight recapped for your reading pleasure. Let's get sickening!

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Internet in the 90s - yeah, it was crap

Sitting at a cafe the other day, sipping an espresso and simultaneously downloading my email and watching a live news broadcast on my mobile phone, whilst talking to my financial manager about the stockmarket on my other mobile phone and Googling myself on my laptop, it occurred to me how crap the internet was 10 years ago.

Ok, ok, so none of that actually happened. I only have one phone and it is crap and can't download anything, and the only thing I own that is even close to a laptop is a tea-stained Stable Table I bought at K Mart seven years ago. However the fact remains - the internet has come a long way since the 90s, when websites were truly webshites and being a web designer meant you knew how to turn on your 28.8k modem.

And to prove it, I bring you the SCREENSHOTS OF SHAME, brought to you via the magic of web archiving. Keep in mind these are ACTUAL screenshots of the way these sites looked 10 years ago. Your faith in this will be tested, I promise you, but it's all true.

Ebay.com, circa 1997


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That's right folks, this is what Ebay used to look like way back when it first started. The text promises "the most fun buying and selling on the web!" Black text on a grey screen - how much fun is THAT? Admittedly what few graphics there were on this site are no longer working, but to be honest I don't think it would make much difference.

Coke.com, circa 1998


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Again, the pics on this site are no longer working - probably a good thing as their presence would only distract us from the six pages of instructions we are obviously required to read before we enter. In true 90s style, we are told what browser we should be using and what plugins we'll require, because those are the ones the web designer used and anyone using anything different can basically bugger off.

"Welcome to the North Pole, compliments of Coca Cola. There's a ton of seasonal silliness inside." reads the text, evoking about as much silliness and fun as a Russian newsreader.

In fact, this is what is ACTUALLY inside:


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See the silliness and fun! See it? No, I couldn't either. The text helpfully tells us that we can use our cursor to explore the page. Really? You mean you can use your mouse on the internet TOO? There's a "Decorate the tree game", which I can only assume was a badly designed Shockwave application that took two hours to download before freezing your computer, a few e-cards and the opportunity to download a TV commercial. DOWNLOADING A VIDEO IN 1998? DO YOU KNOW HOW LONG THAT WOULD HAVE TAKEN? Moving on.

Sony.com, circa 1996


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How about a game of spot the difference, boys and girls? Go to www.sony.com. Go on, just go and have a look. I'll wait for you to get back.

Now, did you notice any differences?

Mcdonalds.com, circa 1996


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Assuming that your retinas haven't melted from the appalling red background, you'll notice that this is a pretty crap web effort from one of the world's biggest companies. A few lines of text, a big old blue/purple hyperlink and an animated GIF was apparently the best they could do with all their millions of dollars. And why bother using a table when you can just centre align the whole thing?

As 90s web fashion dictated at the time, we are made to click on something to "enter" the website. Aren't we already there? Aren't we in it yet?


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"Entering" the site takes us to another crap page featuring another crap picture, seemingly of a happy family laughing at a group of retarded children trapped inside a McDonald's restaurant. The designer is clearly showing his versatility here, opting for a left aligned page over the tried and true centre align method. Of course, this leaves about 72 square metres of white space on the right hand side of the screen, but we won't worry about that. The text tells us to click on either the "adult" or "kids" link to enter the site... hang on, we're STILL not in the site yet? Where are we, the vestibule? Screw this.

Kleenex, circa 1998


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And the winner of 1998's "Zero Effort Award" goes to...Kleenex! I can imagine the head of their newly created web development department at their first meeting, screaming "TIME IS MONEY, JIM, AND PICTURES MEAN SLOWER DOWNLOADS. NO PICTURES! JUST LEFT ALIGN EVERYTHING AND WRITE A PILE OF CRAP ABOUT WHAT WE DO. AND FOR GOD'S SAKE PUT IT ON A WHITE BACKGROUND!"

Nestle, circa 1996


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That obviously wasn't the case over at Nestle, where the designers have clearly scored a copy of Photoshop 3 and let rip on a delightful collage of the company's products. Unfortunately the collage obscures the tiny and rather oddly placed bevelled and embossed grey button we need to click on to enter the site. Not that we'd probably want to.

Should you wish to do your own web archive trawling, I highly recommend visiting the Wayback Machine.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Why video shops suck

Before I start about the video shop, I'd just like to say WHAT THE HELL?


My blog stat counter this morning

It seems the BC exploded yesterday (no innuendo intended, although it's not all that inappropriate) with hits from people searching for Kim Cattrall's Nissan Tiida ad, which I wrote about here.

Why the sudden interest? Seriously, I'm baffled. What has happened in the last 24 hours? Has she crashed one? Had sex with one? God knows. But hey, if that's why you're here - welcome! Now, onto more important matters.

Regular BC groupies may remember my extended rant about trying to join the video shop around the corner from my house, and finding it not very easy at all.

I think it's safe to say video shops are not my favourite places in the world. Last night's experience at Ballbuster confirmed this. And this is why:

1. VIDEO SHOPS EXIST IN THEIR OWN UNIVERSE

For some reason, the people who run video shops think it's reasonable to charge $5.50 for a block of chocolate that would usually cost $3, and $4.85 for a 1.25L bottle of Coke. It's the same at the cinema, where it's also somehow considered quite normal to pay $4.50 for a bottle of spring water. The only reason I can think of for this is that video shops and cinemas actually operate in a universe parallel to our own, where celluloid and silicon exponentially affect the net worth of all products in the immediate vicinity. In such an environment therefore, you and everything on your person are automatically worth approximately 15 times more than usual, which means your $10 Price Attack haircut is now an $150 celebrity style, and the squashed up Freddo at the bottom of your handbag is worth about $40 (with rounding). It also means that whenever Pamela Anderson goes to the movies she has to insure her chest for a further $20 million.

2. THEY CONFUSE YOU WITH 'SPECIAL DEALS'

You go in to get one video, ONE, which you and your mates have decided upon after a 20 minute argument that involved frequently repeating the phrase "I've seen that" and "I'm not watching a movie with fucking SUBTITLES", and yet when you get to the video shop you're suddenly conned into standing around for a further half an hour tring to choose six more videos so you can save $1.50. Even with a whole seven days up your sleeve you know you're not going to watch them all, because you have a LIFE and occasionally go outside, but still you become a slave to the 'special deal' and find yourself at the counter with a stack of videos you're not particularly interested in, so you can pay them more money than you planned.

3. PEOPLE WHO GO TO VIDEO SHOPS ARE ANNOYING

Yes, I see the hypocrisy, but I'm pressing on. Last night, as we were trying to work out what other 127 movies to get to fill the special deal requirement, we were subjected to the 'MUM AND KIDS'. Video shop Mum's favourite phrase is "put that back".

"NO TEGAN, put that back, we're only getting ONE Bratz Summer Party Fun Time DVD. I said ONE. Shenille you saw that last week, put it back. Put that BACK."

During this time the 'and kids' run around grabbing various videos and "putting them back" in random places, before moving on to the lolly counter where they start screaming for treats, and the whole thing starts again.

"Tegan, you're not having chocolate, put it back. We've got ice cream at home, PUT THAT BACK."

Then we had to endure the 'INDIGNANT LATE FEE PAYER' at the counter, a depressed 35-year-old father who got married too early in life and now regrets it and who works a shitty job as a worker drone under some bastard boss. Having no power whatsoever in his daily life, he clutches at whatever he can get - getting mad at waitresses, tailgating grandmas on the freeway, and disputing late fees. For about 20 minutes. While people are standing behind him wanting to pay for their videos AND GET THE FUCK HOME BECAUSE THEIR PIZZA IS GETTING COLD.

"This is a rip off. $9 in late fees? But it was a long weekend. This is a JOKE. What a RIP OFF. I'm not paying it. Such a RIP OFF. You can't withhold videos from me. Oh you can? What a RIP OFF."

4. VIDEO SHOPS HAVE NO IDEA WHAT 'ARTHOUSE' MEANS

This, of course, depends on your video shop but if the Campbelltown Ballbuster is anything to go by, 'arthouse' now means 'pornography'. I remember the days when porn had its own special 'adult' section, or was at least stuck on the top most shelf of the new releases. Not anymore. Sitting proudly next to ACTUAL arthouse films like Owning Mahoney and American Splendor was Asian Babes IV and Breasts of Fury. OK so I made up that second title (which actually probably COULD be an arthouse film) but you get the idea. I have no idea when this transition ocurred, but I was frankly pretty offended by it. I have a feeling these movies have had an 'ARTHOUSE' sticker slapped on them so pathetic men can safely take them home without fear of being reprimanded by the wife. "No love, it's not porn, it's ARTHOUSE. All French movies are like this."

5. THEY THINK THEY'RE EXCLUSIVE

Video shops these days are under the impression that they are actually special clubs, and make it very difficult for you to join unless you can prove you are worthy. This usually involves presenting about 150 points of identification, your last gas bill, birth certificate and a signed testimonial from your next of kin confirming you are who you say you are. They might also check the back of your head for the zip holding your latex Scooby-Doo villan mask together, so if you're trying to con them, beware.

And finally:

6. THEY NEVER HAVE THE VIDEO YOU WANT, BUT THEY'LL ALWAYS HAVE 100 COPIES OF BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE

Saturday, July 15, 2006

It's time to go: 9am with David and Kim

"But what about the Rogue Traders?" I hear you cry. "And Shakira, for god's sake!" All in good time, my loves, all in good time.

After witnessing this absolute DOG'S BREAKFAST of a program earlier this week, I had no choice but to evict it AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. Honestly, dear readers, it is truly the most horrendous piece of programming I've ever seen. It's worse than Hey Dad. It's worse than Australia's Brainiest Footy Player. In fact, I'm going to go so far as to say it's worse than The Wedge.

That's right: 9AM WITH DAVID AND KIM IS WORSE THAN THE WEDGE. (But ironically, funnier.)


Has anyone got a placebo?


David Reyne, who apparently doesn't know what a placebo is, and Kim Watkins have to be two of the worst presenters on television. When David's not saying something long-winded and stupid, Kim's screwing her face up, bugging out her eyes and shrugging her shoulders in attempt to look friendly and approachable. It makes me want to slap her.

If you work a 9-5 job it's unlikely you've had to endure this inane show yet, so congratulate yourself. But remember that one day you'll be stuck in bed with the flu, and you will have read all the books within reach, and you'll be too tired to get out of bed to get the paper, and you won't be able to go back to sleep because someone will be mowing their lawn next door, and the 2, 7 and 9 buttons on your TV remote will be glued stuck with some Ribena you accidentally spilled on it the night before, and under such unfortunate circumstances YOU MAY BE FORCED TO WATCH CHANNEL 10.

If you do, you will probably get something like this, which aired earlier this week:

SEGMENT 1: talking about adoption

David's first question is a cracker...

David: So...what...how...I mean, at what age can a child no longer be adopted?
Guest: *blank stare*
David: I mean, how old does a child have to be before it's ineligible to be adopted?
Guest: *blank stare*


Which is followed by some fumbling by Kim...

Guest: There are exhaustive tests done to ensure parents are suitable to adopt...
Kim: You guys have used the word "exhaustive" a couple of times - and adoption IS exhaustive and somewhat intrusive, isn't it?


I think you're confusing "exhaustive" with "exhausting" Kim. Take two placebos and have a lie down.
On to the next segment.

SEGMENT TWO: talking about parents with HIV

David shows his sensitive side as a guest pours their heart out on national TV...

Guest: I think you can imagine how I felt, I was 30, my kids were aged three and four, and BANG, you're hit with this diagnosis...
David: (wide eyed) And it's a DEATH sentence, really!
Guest: Well yes, I guess it is...


Luckily, Kim is there to pick up the pieces...

Kim: Every person who's diagnosed with HIV goes through that process of 'Who do I tell? How do I tell them?' but you had quite a positive experience, I understand.


Yes Kim, AN HIV POSITIVE EXPERIENCE.

You can almost hear the producers collectively slapping their foreheads as David exclaims "I would LOVE to get you on again to talk about this whole issue, I think it'd be really very interesting..."

And so we move onto a lighter subject:

SEGMENT THREE: cooking with cranberries

Kim: Cranberries are GREAT! And to show us some simple ways to include them in your child's lunchbox is Arianne Spratt. They're GREAT!
Arianne: They ARE great.
Kim: I've never eaten a cranberry.


But they're GREAT, aren't they Kim?

David: You know the best way to eat cranberries is with vodka.
Arianne: What? Soaked in it...and then drunk...or?
David: Nah, just vodka and cranberry juice.
Arianne: *blank stare*
David Ooh yeah!
Arianne: Oh. Yeah. Ok. (turns away)
Kim: (completely oblivious) Those craisins taste like a sultana!
Arianne: That's what I reckon but, yeah, nah... the young girl reckons they're definitely...nah...


Before what is supposed to be a relatively straightforward segment goes completely off the rails, David gets us back on track in a masterstroke of TV hosting, by discussing cranberry farming.

David: Why can't we grow them in Australia?
Arianne: I don't know. Maybe we don't have the...
Kim: Water.
Arianne: Brains.


The segment continues to collapse even further as David decides to make his own cranberry sandwich in the corner while Arianne and Kim try to make a smoothie with a blender that refuses to work. The whole thing degenerates into the most half-arsed cooking segment anyone has ever seen, and as the producers grab their coats and head for the door, we stumble jerkily into the next segment.

SEGMENT FOUR: talking about aged care

Again, we witness more of David's tender, emotional side...

David: Once a parent goes into aged care it's not the end of the relationship is it? A lot of people seem to think "Well, there goes mum, that's that." But you do continue to be involved, don't you?
Guest: I should think so!


As David's mum, who is watching at home, suddenly starts fostering stronger relationships with her OTHER children and the 9am producers start thumbing through Career One for new jobs, we're hit with an advertorial.

SEGMENT FIVE: advert for a new DVD and book series called Natural Killers

The DVD is basically hour after hour of things killing other things in spectacular fashion - sharks eating seals, crocodiles mauling impalas, tigers jumping on zebras.

DVD woman: Natural Killers is so good, it really makes you feel like you're there.


Excellent. There's nowhere I'd rather be than as close as possible to a rabid lion shredding a giraffe to pieces. It's a real pity other DVDs don't do the same thing, like Titanic, or The Towering Inferno.

DVD woman: Sit back and relax - imagine getting up close and personal with some of the world's most impressive natural killers. (video footage of a shark attacking a gorilla)


REALLY FUCKING RELAXING.

And that's about when I turned 9am with David and Kim off, and life once more seemed worth living.

For being the worst piece of daytime television I've seen in ages (and I've seen Passions), and for replacing Bert Newton and relegating him to the awful world of Family Feud where the lights are so harsh you can see his toupee unsticking, and for having two of the stupidest, most annoying hosts on TV, 9am with David and Kim: IT'S TIME TO GO.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Worst fancy dress costumes ever

I think the best thing to do with this post is to start with a picture.


Case in point.

I'd like to state before I go any further that all of the costumes featured in this post can actually be found here, should you wish to dress up like a giant fart cushion or otherwise.

Why anyone would actually WANT to attend a party as a big fat fart cushion escapes me, but you can for just $39.99. Or you could just eat a few cans of beans and attend a party as a big fat farter. It'd probably be cheaper.


Something tells me this is the same costume as above, but painted differently.

Or you could go as a bowling ball. Hide that fat arse in a costume that will continually knock things off shelves and won't allow you to sit down all night. Fun for everyone.


Or if you'd prefer to SHOW OFF your fat...

According to the blurb on the website, this is what Spiderman looks like when he's let himself go. And mixed up his spidey suit with his blue undies in the wash, presumably. I'd say this costume is entirely unnecessary, given that most adult men who would actually dress in a Spiderman costume in the first place probably already HAVE a gut like this.


Be the life of the party...

This costume is for all those funsters out there who call you up before your bash and go "Hey man, I'm bringing a keg to your party! Rock on!" It's also suitable for the "I'm not good looking but I'm fun" kind of guy.


PULL MY FINGER!

Sure you'll have to hold your left arm up all night and put up with drunk people wrenching it around in an attempt to get three cherries, dirty old men joking about putting their hand in your slot, dirty old men joking about "poking" the pokie, people yelling "JACKPOT!" every time you walk past, and possibly not have a free hand to drink all night, but it'll still be fun, right? RIGHT?!


Flushed with excitement.

For once, words fail me. All I can say is - don't get drunk and fall asleep in the corner in this costume, you never know WHAT might happen.


Start saving for the therapy bills now.

Nah, THIS kid isn't going to get beaten up. Nahhhhhh.


What a nifty handbag.

Come to think of it, if that penguin sticks with this kid, he should be fine.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

It chops! It grates! It sharpens!

Apologies in advance for what might be a quite erratic post. I'm on my second vaginga (yes, you read that right - it's my very own personal cocktail of vanilla vodka and ginger ale...you work it out) and I think I've just gone through what must be the 17th breakup from one particularly troubled relationship. (I'm planning a big one for the 21st, you'll all be invited.)

At any rate, I was going to do another "It's time to go" post tonight (and believe me, there are some VERY strong contenders at the moment - watch out Rogue Traders, your days are numbered) but then I remembered how much fun it is to laugh at people who can't speak English, so I'm going down that road instead.

The other day when I was bored, I took a trip to one of my favourite shops, Hong Kong Hardware. For the uninitiated, Hong Kong Hardware is a magical shop that sells everything in the entire world. Want clothes pegs? Hong Kong Hardware. Need a telephone extension cable? Hong Kong Hardware. Out of essential oils? Hong Kong Hardware. It's the kind of place you walk into wanting to buy a pair of scissors and leave with a potato masher, a laundry basket and a screwdriver set.

On this particular occasion, I left with a knife sharpener I had bought for the princely sum of $2. Bargain, thought I. But the true value didn't become fully apparent until I had gotten it home and carefully examined the package.


Look what you can get for $2 these days...

When I read the packet properly it became clear that I hadn't bought just any old knife sharpener, I had bought a

SHA-HE
NEW GENERATION MULTIFU
NCTIONAL KNIFE GRINDING APPARATUS

Bloody hell, I thought. Someone must have put the wrong price tag on this baby! My suspicions grew as I read what else this amazing apparatus could do:


The what now?

Ah yes, "the olate of grinding onions". Whenever I'm grinding onions I wonder how much more olate it would be if I just had a better, perhaps MULTIFU-NCTIONAL apparatus to do it with.


I see...

"The cut of wrapped sausage", indeed. How often I have had a wrapped sausage and wondered just how to unwrap it. Well all that worry is gone now that I can just cut it, using my MULTIFU-NCTIONAL KNIFE GRINDING APPARATUS. On further inspection, the sausage-cutting part of the sharpener turned out to be just a hole, so clearly their marketing guy is working overtime. ("What can I say this hole is for? The cut of wrapped sausage, of course!") One might point out that if one's knives are sharp, one might not NEED a wrapped sausage-cutting tool, but hey, never turn down an added extra.

The pack also helpfully pointed out, in big red lettering next to a warning!! symbol, EVERYBODY CAN SHARPEN A KITCHEN KNIFE KC EASILY AND SAFELY, which made me kc feel even kc better about my kc purchase.

So as the alcoholic chef once said: I'm going to make another cocktail and go sharpen some knives.