August 30th, 2009

beta delta

Shall we play a game?

Behold, a post that isn't about art! It's hardly surprising though; RL is pretty boring these days.

We watched Wargames last night. It's one of my favourite films and it's been years since I've seen it. It's held up amazingly well, not looking dated at all except for the computers, and it's hard to believe it was made shortly after Blake's 7 which looks as if it's from a different era. The staff at NORAD include women and people of colour; none of the sexism that sometimes came up in B7.

It's a brilliant film, and I love General Beringer with his preference for people over machines, and his "Hell, I'd piss on a spark plug if I thought it'd do any good!" The cast is perfect, with Barry Corbin as the rather lovable general and John Wood with his thin, intellectual face and sardonic, detached look as Falken.

It reminded me of when I worked as a programmer for the Health Department, where we used to play Global Thermonuclear War ourselves, even though (or perhaps because) it was well after the fall of the USSR. The building we worked in was a solid concrete bunker with slit windows designed to be too narrow for a person to get through, and with rotating security firms providing guards, and swipe cards for all employees to get in, set to different levels of security (e.g. I couldn't actually get into the computer room). I used to think it was overkill for medical records, being young and innocent, until a colleague uncovered the frequent hospital visits of his neighbour for removal of various self-inserted items. Anyway, one day I left a printout of my missile sites (I was playing the USSR) on my desk and it was gone in the morning. Someone said a guard had it, so I went to see. Yes, one of them had found it in the night and put it in the safe and wasn't releasing it to anyone without sufficient authority. I let him keep it. He obviously thought the place wasn't really the Heath Department, and I bet it totally made his week. :-)

art

Day 30 - Lucky Cats

The last real entry for naarmamo is a pair of fat little cats I bought from a Thai cafe which also sold a strange assortment of imported stuff. I was just going to buy one but I decided they came as a pair. They're not Thai as that's a different alphabet. I thought they were Chinese, but googling seems to show more hits for Japanese maneki neko. So far I haven't seen any like these though.

[Edit] It turns out that they're Chinese; thanks, [info] jaxomsride. A lucky cat museum site has yellow one from Taiwan with a gourd from the same range. :-) Here's what it says about her:

YELLOW cats beckon for good health, stability, & good marriages.
One of my bestest feel-goodest cats! Everything about this guy says "HAPPINESS". He's bright yellow (for "wealth") with colorful detailing, holds a crystal ball (a symbol for "purity") & also a lucky gourd (for "longevity"). His smile & body language are right on. 2.5" (6.5 cm) tall, painted ceramic. ID: Embossed in an oval beside his tail is "Kao / Miao Chuang". Purchased new from Taiwan.
One of mine has that oval which I'd never noticed before; the other has a butterfly in an oval. "Miao" BTW is a Chinese name; I had a friend called that. I think "kao" just means clay.

And look: two more yellows and two orange ones, different again!

They're a good choice for today as the orange one looks as if she's waving goodbye. They're supposed to bring good luck and wealth, but so far they haven't worked. :-P I like them anyway. They make me smile.

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