Saturday, December 30, 2006

Gamer Girls

This one is for my fellow VG geeks (and courtesy of a link sent to me by my friend Misha). Gamer girls from the Next Wars forum. Of course it is hard to determine if these girls are actual gamers. Nevertheless, they are fit, as you can check out on the sample picture I reproduced in the beginning of this post. In my geeky mind, these are very sexy art pictures, quite classy if you ask me. Enjoy this pic, and read the original forum.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Is sexual disinhibition a problem?

The BBC reports that a bloke has won 3 million pounds from his former employee because a work-related injury to his head caused him to lose his sexual inhibition. According to BBC, the man has had multiple extra-marital relationships and was putting his marriage at risk, and thus the care he receives for free from his wife. Aside from the fact that he considers his wife simply as a free-caretaker, I do not think that Michael Douglas Syndrome is a recognized medical condition.

Is it only me, or is somebody out there that sees something wrong with this settlement? Seriously, most people would pay to lose sexual inhibition, especially in this overly sanitized world in which a lot of people spend most of their lives insulated from real human contact to the point where they must be taught intellectually the subtleties of human relations.

I for one, think that this man should be studied by neurosurgeons and other medicine researchers, this might be the cure for many of the neuro-psycological conditions that affect many in our society.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Internacional World Champion

Despite a week of stress and depression, my glorious Internacional today managed to lighten up my day by winning the Club World Championship, against Barcelona.

The BBC reports in a funny pun (I don't know if it was intentional) that Internacional sink Barca, (which, in some latin languages would translate to Internacional sink the "Boat") though I'm afraid they misspelled Barça since english speakers have an aversion for different letters.

In any case, I'm happy for that, and happy that thousands of supporters of Grêmio who spent years arguing that their constant losses to Internacional were little things, since Inter has never won the World Cup. Now I wonder what they are going to say (big smile here).

To finalize my post, here is a video recorded on 1979 (the year I was born), in which a comedian parodying a known local sports commentator (and Grêmio fanatic) accidentally foresaw Inter winning the world championship in 2006.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Stress & Depression

Graduate Game Plan: Stress & Depression

From the title of the post, it's easy to spot my state of mind these days. An excerpt from an e-mail I sent today to my supervisor follows:

I don't know if this is normal for a PhD, but I am constantly in doubt of whether everything I am trying to do is valid at all, or indeed if I am even fit to finish a PhD because of my constant uncertainty about my research. All the time it just feels like I am making up stuff that are just a puny recast of work already done by others. At the end of the day, my inability to do anything other than "replay" my fears in my head over and over are depressing me a lot. It seems that everyday I spend hours just trying to convince myself that my whole PhD is worth something.

I did not want to sound too dramatic, but that was exactly how I felt earlier today, and my supervisor (he's not in London today) called me some minutes afterwards to see what was happening (gotta respect him for his attentiveness to his students).

After a very constructive discussion, I now feel somewhat reasured about the direction of my research. Emotionally, I feel like a mixture of shame and hope, because looking back it seems like I've been a bit of a crybaby. In my defense, I understand that I am as human as anybody else, and I do not live in a vacuum, so having people around me is important to feel energized to do work, especially of the lonely type usually done in post-grad research.

It seems that the second year is the most emotionally challenging of any PhD (or so Mike tells me), and the link above appears to confirm this. If you look on the web for "graduate depression", you will find loads of sites that describe the way I feel. At least I am not alone...

If this had happened a few years ago, I would probably be contemplating suicide, but life had a special way of humbling me, and taught me to get rid of my illusions of overachievement. It seems to me now, that whenever I do things without too much pretension, I get the most significant results.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Holy wee

Today at lunch, we were pondering about some statistic from Thames Water that says that the water you drink from the tap has passed through at least six human bodies before arriving at your glass. This led me to think about that calculation that concludes that at any given moment you are probably breathing the same air that Julius Caesar has breathed at his time. Of course somebody else has though of the analogy I'm going to make as well, I'm not that original and the internet has just proven that to me, but we went to a distinct conclusion. Now if you are following me, that also means that whenever you drink water (or any beverage that includes terrestrial water in it), you are also imbibing the water that, how can I say, has passed through Jesus Christ! Hallelujah brother!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Video Games Live - Super Mario Bros.

A quick video from the concert I went yesterday. After a hell of a lot of music from newer games, and music that is not so interesting for these old ears, finally, music from one of the games I have the fondest memories of.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Video Games Live

Just got back from Video Games Live, which is a concert in which an orchestra plays music from, you guessed right, video games. Pretty cool event, and I am thoroughly satisfied. It started pretty interestingly with a collage of songs made from the sounds of Pong to some of the cool cames of the 80s and 90s, in kind of a crescendo of technological evolution. Then we went through games that varied from Frogger to Halo, Zelda to Final Fantasy, Sonic and Mario. They even had some mini-challenges involving old games like Space Invaders (to the tune of the orchestra) and Frogger (again, people playing the game to the sound of the orchestra). This got me thinking I'm somewhat old, because the 17 year-old kid who was summoned from the audience to play Frogger did not even know of this game... Posted by Picasa

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Versailles - What do you see?

Now this is kind of an experiment on the "mind's eye", and I was wondering what people perceive as they look into this image, a satelite view of the Palais de Versailles. The humanoid figure might be obvious, but some of the details people perceive intrigue me. What do you see? Posted by Picasa

Friday, November 10, 2006

Nazi Adler

The Nazi eagle that originally sat atop the Reichstag, taken by the Red Army at the Battle of Berlin and given to the Allies. That's history baby! Posted by Picasa

Apparel for a little boy

A replica of the casing for the Little Boy bomb, dropped in Hiroshima for the shame of humanity. Posted by Picasa

Ich und ein Jagdpanther

One of the coolest toys on display on the Imperial War Museum, a nicely preserved (though punctured by a shell on the other side :-D), JagdpantherPosted by Picasa

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Berliner Mauer

To celebrate the fall of the wall, nothing more appropriate than a genuine section of it on display in front of the Imperial War Museum! Posted by Picasa

Not your regular garden decoration

These are two huge naval guns from Dreadnought ships graciously on display in front of the Imperial War Museum, the one on the far side from the viewer has even participated on the bombardment of the beaches of Normandy on D-DayPosted by Picasa

Imperial War Museum

As part of my Berlin Wall day expedition, I decided to visit the Imperial War Museum here in London, which holds quite a collection of items from past and recent wars in which the british were involved, directly and indirectly (if you know what I mean). It's quite a sight, where pieces of history can be seen up close and personal. Posted by Picasa

It's a beautiful day in London

The 9th of november, being such an important date, greets me with a clear and sunny sky (almost a miracle in London). It's just appropriate that we celebrate the fall of the Berlin Wall, and Napoleon's rise into power, among other things. Posted by Picasa

Verona and Juliet

To celebrate this day, I'm posting a pic from Verona, of me holding the hand of lovely Juliet. Of course, she is a fictitious woman (and I tend to prefer concrete girls for myself), but the tale is interesting nonetheless. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

How to use a Hookah

On another one of my morning time-wasters, I've come across a hilarious instructional video on how to prepare a Hookah for use, step-by-step. Check it out:

Monday, November 06, 2006

Pronto Condoms!

I just could not have ignored this piece of news from BBC, about these South African condoms that are advertised to be the quickest condoms to wear. No shit, the videos in their website, at least do a good job in convincing me of that.

New Website

Now, I'm gonna use my blog for personal advertisement, and place a link to my new website at So as not to miss the classic pictorial format of my blog, I'm posting a screenshot below.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

The rally moves to trafalgar square

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Climate change and the Americans

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Rally against climate change

I was there, and I want Toxic Texan to be held accountable for his recklessness. Posted by Picasa

Firenze ed Fortezza Belvedere

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La Torre di Pisa

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Felipe in Pisa

Moving on to Tuscany, we find Pisa, where the famous leaning tower still stands (seen on the background to my left), right beside the Duomo and the BaptistryPosted by Picasa

Felipe in Venice

That right, me again, in Venice. Posted by Picasa

Ponte dei Sospiri

A view from within the Bridge of Sighs, connecting the Duke's palace to the prison. Contrary to what some might believe, the sighs in this bridge were of despair rather than love. Posted by Picasa

The election room in Venice

Me within the Palazzo Ducale, in the great room where the election for the Doges took place. Posted by Picasa

The Ventian Lagoon

The Venetian Lagoon as seen from the Duke's Palace. Posted by Picasa

The Golden Staircase

Inside the Palazzo DucalePosted by Picasa

Inside the Palazzo Ducale

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Palazzo Ducale

One of the main landmarks of the old Venetian republic is the palace of the Doges (Dukes) of the republic. It is a quite sumptuous monument to the power of that republic. Posted by Picasa