Welcome to the Playpen, our space for ferrety banter and whimsical snippets of things that aren't quite long enough for articles (although they might be) but that caught your eye anyway.

at 12:42 on 31-08-2009, Wardog permalink
at 12:22 on 31-08-2009, Wardog
Adorable? That child is frankly terrifying.

An article from the NY Times on the future of reading and a rebuttal from Meg Cabot.

If anything they both illuminate this: society has a funny attitude to reading.
at 01:38 on 31-08-2009, Wardog


*adds to basket*

Is there to be a review?
at 05:43 on 29-08-2009, Viorica
Uh, I have absolutely nothing to contribute to the discussion at hand, but everyone should go read this right now.
at 02:21 on 27-08-2009, Rude Cyrus
Well, his supporters have the brains of 5-year-olds, so it's no surprise.
at 22:49 on 26-08-2009, Rude Cyrus
Here's how the health care crisis affects me: my mother had spinal surgery several months ago, and recently she's been complaining of several neurological symptoms -- difficulty swallowling, dizziness, short-term memory loss, etc. It's gotten so bad that she collapsed today and started crying. Does anyone know what that's like? She's going to see the doctor tomorrow, but if she needs an MRI or something, she'll need to get a prescription for that and then make another appoinment, all while whatever she has gets worse. What's great is that on Monday, I'll start attending a local university, which means I'll have all this shit on my shoulders while trying to study.
at 21:43 on 26-08-2009, Rami
Actually, the House of Lords' dynamics are interestingly different from those of the Commons. Among other things, they're not elected, and tend to be fairly well off independently, which helps somewhat with the typical electoral / funding mess.

In other news, if you're in the Washington, DC area and see something out of the ordinary, it could be a training scenario for secret agents!
at 18:59 on 26-08-2009, Rami
Best fanfic ever?
Quite possibly ;-)
at 06:47 on 26-08-2009, Guy permalink
at 00:39 on 26-08-2009, Arthur B
I had No Commitment and No Mercy. But I think No Mercy may partially be due to the way they phrase the socialising questions; it's not that I'm completely against socialising via gaming, it's just that I'm against socialising with 99% of the people you actually encounter on, say, XBox Live...
at 00:34 on 26-08-2009, Shim
Mastermind-Seeker, with No Fear! That's less impressive than it sounds. It also doesn't mean I seek masterminds, which seems a shame.

Some of the questions are a bit tricky though; I don't game online, and I don't have a console, so I only co-play with my Dad in Myst-type puzzlers, which makes the whole social swathe difficult to answer. I can't say I actively dislike playing with other people, or love it, or whatever - I just don't do it.
at 21:04 on 25-08-2009, Sonia Mitchell
Hey, I'm a conqueror!
I think that may be a euphemism for bad loser.
at 23:41 on 24-08-2009, Arthur B
Interesting point: my score in Mastermind (linked to Dopamine, which is chemically similar to cocaine according to the site) and Seeker (linked to Endorphin, which according to them is chemically similar to opium), suggesting that I flip-flop between Survivor-Junkie and Survivor-Coke Fiend.
at 23:10 on 24-08-2009, Rude Cyrus
According to the test, I am a Seeker-Survivor, which I suppose is accurate.
at 22:03 on 24-08-2009, Arthur B
what the

Apparently I'm a Survivor-Mastermind, which means I like making clever plans to get out of tight spots or something. Oh, and it's all to do with my reptile brain; apparently Silent Hill 2 really talks to the reptoid inside me.
at 00:07 on 23-08-2009, Arthur B
I think it's called "being stoned out of your head".
at 23:29 on 22-08-2009, Rude Cyrus
Gee, the ratings are disabled. Thankfully, the comments show that most people aren't believing this shit.

Also, does he have some neurological disorder that prevents him from showing emotion?

at 23:08 on 22-08-2009, Arthur B
Did you know that nukes don't exist?

Best line from the video, when watching footage of an H-bomb test: "it looks like they're zooming in on a Sun..."
at 18:20 on 22-08-2009, Viorica
There are times when I feel like writing is a worthwhile pursuit, that it can be used to make a difference with it, and that all the hard work put into it is worth it.

And then I see something like this, and I just want to kill people.
at 17:51 on 22-08-2009, Rami
Kyra, that's brilliant. You should definitely post that more widely :-)
at 15:45 on 22-08-2009, Jamie Johnston
[Distracts from own fail by changing the subject:]

Having in mind articles such as Fear and loathing in Legotown, Games. UR doin it wrong, In defence of Doug Bailey, and surely something by Arthur although I can't at the moment think of an example, I'm vaguely wondering whether we should have a theme, vaguely opposite to 'minority warrior', for articles in which the author denounces things that are supposedly Progressive and Envelope-Pushing and reasserts traditional values such as Not Being Rubbish and Leaving It To The Professionals.

Or perhaps a pair of themes, one for 'why the overwhelming consensus about X is completely wrong' and one for 'why the overwhelming consensus about X is completely right'.