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Friday, 12 December 2014

wrong choice

So what if you've made a wrong choice? Why should this be bothering if this is perfectly fine to not make the wisest of decisions all the time. Yet, the's something inherently wrong about wondering whether you could have made a wiser decision. So, you're better off ploughing on without a care in the world about the consequences than sitting in the house moping all day long about something you had thought in the past that might not have been right after all.

Why is it wrong, you ask?
Well because you are second guessing yourself. You fear you made the wrong choice, and missed out on what may have been a good thing. What you have to internalise is that you can never objectively know if your decision was good or bad. Once life branches, we can never know what shape the branch might have taken otherwise. We often fantasize that the path not taken would have been so much better, but life is too complex with too many variables to make that anything other than a complete fantasy. There is just a good of a chance that other paths would have been far worse 5 years down the road than the one you chose. The point is that for better or worse, the path you are on is the 'right' one. You chose it for the reasons you did at the time, which is what we all do, and the only thing we can do because we aren't clairvoyant. If you're looking for a clairvoyant's true insights are like, look no further than here.

A post with a Christmas spin on it

Getting in a spirit beffiting a working mind full of holiday cheers, here's a post about one of the most enduring modern day Christmas symbols ever: coca cola. Better still, this post will be dedicated to a famous spin-off of the worldwide famous albeit health-wrecking fizzy drink: the new coke.

New Coke was the unofficial name of the sweeter formulation introduced in 1985 by The Coca-Cola Company to replace its flagship soft drink, Coca-Cola (a.k.a. Coke). Properly speaking, New Coke had no separate name of its own, but was simply known as "the new taste of Coca-Cola" until 1992 when it was renamed Coca-Cola II.

Public reaction to the change was poor, and the new cola was a major marketing failure. The subsequent reintroduction of Coke's original formula has been suspected to have resulted in a significant gain in sales.

A Caffeine Free New Coca-Cola version was also introduced at the same time, as if anyone who cared about their health would ever consider drinking it. Should they be looking for some caffeine-free drink they might just as well stop drinking this altogether and go for something less offensive instead. Anyway, it was eventually replaced by Caffeine Free Coca-Cola classic in 1990, which was the original 1983-1985 Caffeine Free Coca-Cola formula.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Review for Killer Klowns from outer space

A hillarious threesome.
 This cult classic horror spoof has it all: a plot that is simple enough to follow and entertaining at the same time, likeable characters and nefarious villains. It's one of these movies that enthrall the viewer with all sorts of otherworldly fantasies which make it hard to be brought back down to earth after the viewing. 

The plot consists of an army of sadistic alien life forms, who look remarkably like our concept of a clown. The grisly-looking bunch land in the sleepy American town of Crescent Cove. When their spaceship lands, which is in the form of a circus tent. Mike Tobacco and Debbie Stone , out for a romantic evening, spot the newcomers and decide to investigate. They soon encounter the Klowns and barely escape capture, having been shot at by a "popcorn gun." At first, it seems the popcorn functions simply to track the fleeing teens, but another purpose is revealed later in the movie. Mike and Debbie rush into town to warn others of the impending danger.

Who can help feeling sorry for the little fella?
Naturally, they first try to warn the police. Their warnings are met with scorn by Sgt. Mooney, convinced that the couple are nothing more than kids trying to pull a prank. They are viewed with equal skepticism by another police officer, Dave Hanson. Hanson also happens to be Debbie's ex-boyfriend, and his dislike of Mike is evident.

Meanwhile, the Klowns make their way into Crescent Cove. They harvest the unsuspecting population, blasting random victims with a ray gun that coccoons them with cotton candy, with lethal results. The Klowns use a variety of seemingly innocent methods to ensnare their victims; killer shadow puppets, bloodhound-like balloon animals and a ray gun that looks like a children's toy are all used. Since the methods themselves appear whimsical, the townspeople don't know they are in danger until it's too late.

This might as well become a Mario Party mini-game some day.
When Officer Hanson sees a Klown use a Tyrannosaurus rex shadow puppet to capture a group of townspeople waiting for a bus, he is finally convinced of the danger and offers to help Mike and Debbie (who have also recruited the Terenzi brothers, a pair of local goof-offs who drive an ice cream truck). But for Sgt. Mooney, it is too late. After imprisoning a Klown who has entered the police station ("I'm supposed to read you your rights, but you're in Mooney's jail; and you ain't GOT no rights!"), Mooney is strangled by a teaser-like weapon wielded by the creature. In a delicious irony, Mooney--having repeatedly declared that "no one's going to make a dummy out of me!"--is horribly desecrated by the Klown: it paints his face and jams a hand into his mediastinum, thereby gaining control of Mooney's motor functions and effectively making a puppet out of him. A mortified Officer Hansen witnesses this and pulls his sidearm on the Klown. Shooting the Klown's torso has no effect, but when a bullet strikes the Klown's big red nose, this ignites a dramatic explosion. The Klown vanishes, and Dave has found the way to defeat the Klowns.

Killer Klowns usually mind their manners during a meal.
While the Klown army is carrying out a genocide all around Crescent Cove, Debbie meanwhile is at home taking a shower. While bathing, the popcorn that one of the clowns fired at her begins to act strangely. When she steps out of the shower, she is attacked by several Jack-in-the-box-like creatures with clown heads. Debbie fends off the creatures with hairspray and a shower sprayer. It is possible these creatures may have been young space clowns, as the clown who used a shadow puppet to capture the group waiting by the bustop is seen putting his hands into a bag full of popcorn afterwards. While trying to escape, Debbie is captured by the Klowns. But instead of being turned into cotton candy, she is imprisoned in a balloon. Why she is taken alive is not stated in the movie. However she was not the only person to be taken away in a balloon.

truncheon bout
Debbie is taken back to the Klowns' "Big Top" circus tent-spaceship. Mike, Officer Hanson and the Terenzi brothers pursue them. It is there that they discover why the Klowns have been capturing people. By cocooning them inside their cotton candy, the Klowns gelatinize the humans' bodies into a liquid that is digestible. Vast numbers of victims (a majority of the town's population) are being stored aboard Big Top. The Klowns insert a crazy straw into the cotton candy, sucking the deceased victim's gelatinized bodies.

Debbie is eventually freed, and a hole is crashed into Big Top by the Terenzi Brothers' ice cream truck. Rich and Paul Terenzi, using their PA system, pretend to be the Klowns' leader (there's a giant clown's head with a sugar cone-hat on top of the truck). They tell the Klowns to let Mike, Debbie, and Officer Hanson go. But then a giant "Master Klown," roughly 30 feet tall, descends from the ceiling: Klownzilla, the "King Klown," presumably the leader of the aliens. The Master Klown violently throws the Terenzi Brothers' ice cream truck across the ship (with the Terenzi Brothers in it), resulting in a fiery explosion. Officer Hanson creates a diversion so Mike and Debbie can escape. He defeats the Master Klown by popping its big red nose (the Klowns' only weakness) with his badge. Master Klown blows up, and so does Big Top in mid-liftoff, but Officer Hanson and the Terenzi brothers all survive (Rich and Paul took cover in the freezer, with the ice cream, when their truck exploded; during the Big Top explosion, they and Dave all hid in a Klown Kar, which literally falls out of the sky). The movie ends with a bunch of cream pies being dumped on the heroes.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

The unmanly art of diving

If an edge can be gained by a form of cheating, then so be it.  Both sides should try to outcheat each other, vying for the ref`s attention to the worst form of misconduct. In the end, the governing bodies of this already muddled sport would reveal their true intent by punishing only one of the teams, usually the one lower in ranking stature.

There is no such thing as gamesmanship, it is a word used for cheats who play sport. They are getting paid way above their worth as people and still have the gall to cheat and then downplay their swindling afterwards. This SWPL press should call them what they are and see if the idiots will try to sue them. They show utter contempt to football supporters who pay their excessive wages and are no better than common criminals for doing so. As for the governing bodies to do something about it, they have even more contempt for the grass root supporters than cheats of the same batch that disgraced the World Cup this year. I`m glad Germany sorted them out, besides giving them the royal up yours for thinking they could get away with all their bamboozling in both the group stage and in the quarter final. One can only take so much crap before the need to call them out on their bs comes up.

For those harping about the unfairness of the minimum wage

This is bound to get people jumpy, but anyone also wondering how unfair having to live on a minimum wage is, there's something else to consider before setting forth to rant about the lack of a fair pay:

A "fair" wage is first and foremost one that the employee has decided is "fair," and the employer finds to be acceptable. Far from a one-sided agreement as the employee has as much power to decide whether or not to take the job as the employer to turn down anyone he fits unsuitable to do work for him.

Any employee who is complaining, or striking, because they are not receiving a "fair wage," should first be prompted to answer the following questions.

If, by your terms, you are not receiving a "fair wage," why are you still working here? Why haven't you gone out and obtained a better paying job elsewhere?

Sunday, 24 August 2014

mathematical joke

I know that it's old and plenty may already know it and have retold it countless times, but it bears repeating because it's classical and clever in its own unique way.

A mathematician and an engineer were talked into taking part in a psychological experiment. They were seated on one side of a room unaware of what would happen. A door swung open and a hot-looking naked woman came in and stood on the far side. They were then instructed that every time they heard a beep to move half the remaining distance to the woman. They heard the beep and the engineer quickly moved halfway across the room while the mathematician stood still, unmoving and looking disgusted. When the mathematician failed to move again after the second beep he was asked why. "Because I know I will never reach the woman", implying that any given measured distance can be infinitely divided by two and never become zero. On the other hand, the engineer was asked why he chose to move and replied "Because I know that very soon I will be close enough for all practical purposes!"

Monday, 14 July 2014

Common Data Structures in C#

As used in Unity 3d, that is! Today we are going to review some basic data structures and the right syntax within which they are arranged in C#.


A queue in computer programming stands for a sort of array of the first in first out kind. This is comprised of a rank of items being entered into a set and then the first item inserted is also the first one to be taken out. The items assigned to the queue can be strings (ASCII characters that don`t take part in any kind of specific calculation), integers, float (a special kind of integer that supports an impressive amount of decimal digits) etc. The basic syntax is as follows:

using UnityEngine;
using System.Collections;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class QueueManager : MonoBehaviour
//this is important. When dealing with C sharp within a common Unity Engine domain,
//it is necessary to declare a class (a class basically carries your main program)as public
//inheriting MonoBehaviour. It is crucial to the successful compilation of your program for it to //inherit MonoBehaviour because that`s what will interpret your code as more fitting in an
// in-game environment than that of a common application. Therefore, you shall make your mission
// to have your public class inherit MonoBehaviour. Also note that the public class name
// will always be named after the script created in the game object screen

public Queue <string> panhandle = new  Queue <string> ();
/* Pay heed to the way the above statement looks like. We start off by declaring a variable of the queue kind. Except that you don`t declare it the usual way. Before moving on, notice that the queue is to accessed publicly anywhere in your project. That`s why it was made necessary to state that it is of the public kind. AFter making it clear that you`re declaring a public queue variable, you need to specify what kind of data will be inserted into this queue. This is specified between < >. In the example above, it will take in string variables.

Ok, so far you know that every queue that for the life of you you have to declare should follow the following pattern:
1- access level (public, private etc)
2- the key word `Queue`
3- what kind of variables will come into this (<string>, <int>, <float> etc)

This should be enough for you to witness the mighty power of a newly declared queue, right?
Again, do recall that life is full to the brimming with glaring exception that are only there to mar the beautiful thought process that you have allowed to shape up in your bonse. After making sure that your queue is of the public kind and that it will be receiving strings, you should prepare it for future use. That`s right, you should set this to be started in the program. This is accomplished with `new`. You have basically created  a queue data structure and now the compiler needs to understand that it is a new queue. Worse yet, it needs to be told that it is a new Queue that will store strings. Hence the  <string> bit.

The last tidbit are the round brackets enclosing themselves. () are a common staple of object oriented programming and apparently necessary for the public declaration of a queue to be complete.

From what you can glean by reading the above it is possible to conclude that:
1- a queue should first be determined whether it will be of the public kind
2- it is always necessary to specify the type of variables that are going to be administered to the declared public queue
3- don`t forget to give your queue a name. Here it is going to be called `panhandle`.
4- It will receive (hence the equal symbol) a new queue. You can think of the process as a soulless body lying prostate on the ground. Provided that it remains soulless, it will be of no use. As soon as it welcomes a warm and amiable soul, the body will be ready to serve whomever its master is.
5- it will receive a new attribute, which calls for the specification that it is a queue for <string>
6- () is a common staple of queues, stacks and lists.

public Queue <string> panhandle = new Queue <string> ()

After this thorough understanding behind the rationale for creating a queue, you can type this up without giving it much thought!

void Start()
// here is everything that is going to take place at the game`s start
//there you have it. You`ve included your first item in the queue. A string named "Damnd".
//notice the imperative command `enqueue` to make this happen
panhandle. Enqueue("Eddi E.");
panhandle.Enqueue("Won Won");

//we`ve added a total of 4 <string> items to our queue.
 //it might be interesting to create a loop to check the <string> variables in the queue.

foreach  (string number in panhandle)
Debug.Log (number);
//number was a quick string created only to be a reference to access the queue

//one might want to display their neat queue. Debug.Log is the best option for a quick Print.Out //command


//If we need to take an item out of the queue, we simply use Dequeue ().No need to specify which //item will be withdrawn becauseit will always be the first one in.

void Update ()


Let`s create a complete application to highlight the use of queues:

using UnityEngine;
using System.Collections;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class queuemanager : MonoBehaviour {

public Queue <string> elements = new Queue <string> ();

void Start ()
elements.Enqueue ("Kung Lao");
elements.Enqueue ("Tony Marquez");
elements.Enqueue ("Goro");

foreach (string number in elements)
Debug.Log (number);

void Update ()
if (Input.GetKeyUp (KeyCode.Space))
elements.Dequeue ();
Debug.Log ("___");

foreach (string number in elements)
Debug.Log (number);



A list is, at its most basic concept, a queue, bar the except that it doesn`t necessarily follow the first in last in pattern.


using EngineUnity;
using System.Collections;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class listmanager : MonoBehaviour {

public list <int> listofintegers = new list <int> ();

void Start ()
listofintegers.Add (1);
listofintegers.Add (2) ;
listofintegers.Removeat (0);

//(0) simply means that we are going to remove the item at the top of the list.
//Remove(2) will remove 2 items at once off the list

for (int i=0; i<listofintegers.Count;i++)
Debug.Log (listofintegers[i]):
void Update ()



Another kind of queue, except that it is of the first in last out kind.

using UnityEngine;
using System.Collections;
using System.Collections.Generic;

public class stackmanager : MonoBehaviour

public stack <string> staxrcool = new stack <string> ();

void Start ()

staxrcool.Push ("Akuma");
staxrcool.Push ("Gouki");
staxrcool.Push ("Shin Gouki");

// you may be intelligent enough to have noticed that to add items to stack is to push them in.

staxrcool.Pop ();
//Pop removes one item from the stack. Again, the last one in is always the first to leave.


void Update ()


Sunday, 6 July 2014

Tennis players are individuals, not one-man countries

I acknowledge the reality of people having to "come from" somewhere, but I tend to see the players (in slams at least) as individuals rather than representatives of a certain country, so to me the under-representation of a nation in the 3rd round of the men's is just, well, one of those things. More shocking to me was the early exit of the likes of Rafa, Roger etc in the previous tournament of what turned out to be one of those peculiar Wimbledons that happens from time to time.

Friday, 4 July 2014

French toast

French Toast. Image courtesy of
French toast (often known as Eggy Bread in parts of the United Kingdom, pain perdu in French) is a popular breakfast food in North America, Europe, Bermuda and Brazil. French toast is made with bread and eggs, with milk commonly added. According to what is popular in local cuisine, many of the spices that are added to bread or egg dishes are included in cooking. This versatile dish is often topped with sugar, butter, fruit, syrup, or other items.


Slices of bread are dipped in a beaten egg mixture. The slices of egg-coated bread are then placed on a frying pan or griddle prepared with a coat of butter or oil, and cooked until both sides are browned and the egg has cooked through.

According to, the cooked slices can be served with a variety of toppings, including jam, butter, peanut butter, honey, Marmite, vegemite, maple syrup, fruit syrup, molasses, apple sauce, beans, beef, lard, whipped cream, fruit, tomato sauce (when powdered sugar/sugar is not used), chocolate, sugar, yogurt, powdered sugar, marmalade, bacon, duck fat (in Northern Ireland), treacle, cheese (often with ham), gravy or various nuts such as pecans. Heating the oil/butter with chopped garlic, chillies or onions is an effective way to add extra flavour to the dish.
A bunch of slices of French Toast.


Stuffed French toast is two pieces of French toast that are stuffed with bananas, strawberries, or other fruit. It is usually topped with butter, maple syrup, and powdered sugar.

In the United Kingdom it is often savory and known as either "eggy bread" or "Gypsy toast" or just "bread dipped in egg" in South East Wales. It is also sometimes known by the rather grand title of "Poor Knights of Windsor". Another name occasionally used is "French fried bread" but this should not be confused with "fried bread", which is white bread fried in butter or fat left over from frying bacon or sausages. One variation has marmite spread on the bread before dipping.

In Italy a variation is served known as mozzarella in carrozza (literally "mozzarella in carriage"). In this version a slice of fresh mozzarella is sandwiched between two slices of bread and the whole dipped in egg and fried. It can be seasoned with salt, but is not sweet like French toast nor is it eaten for breakfast. It is often topped with tomato sauce, which is then sometimes garnished with some chopped parsley and grated cheese to make 3 broad stripes of green, white and red, curiosuly enough, the colours of the Italian flag.

In Portugal, it is called fatias douradas or rabanadas and is typically made during Christmas, out of slices of bread leftovers (when it's too hard to be consumed the normal way) soaked in milk to soften it, dipped in beaten egg, deep-fried in olive oil and then dipped in sugar and cinnamon or a syrup made with water, sugar, cinnamon sticks and lemon skin. It is usually eaten cold for dessert.

In Spain, it is called torrijas and is typically made during Lent, out of thick slices of bread soaked in milk or wine, dipped in egg, fried and then drenched in spiced honey.

In New York and in Jewish-American communities, it is a common to make it with Challah. The richness of the sweet egg bread complements the richness of the French toast preparation. In many Jewish-American households it is traditional to use the leftover challah from Friday night Sabbath dinner to make French toast on Sunday morning. The slightly stale challah absorbs the egg or milk-and-egg mixture more readily and cooks into a custard-like central hub for the slices of French toast.

In the Western and Southwestern United States, it is common for some restaurants will prepare it with Sourdough bread.

In Australia and New Zealand, French toast is a breakfast or brunch dish, made by pan-frying individual sliced bread or baguette slices dipped in the egg mixture identical to American preparations. It is sometimes served with banana and fried bacon, and topped with maple syrup. Another popular variation in New Zealand uses a mixture of eggs yolks, milk and grated cheese to make a savory breakfast food.

In Germany, the Arme Ritter (literally poor knights) are made from bread leftovers as fast and simple meal. There are several local alternatives in serving: with a mix of sugar and cinnamon, filled with plum-jam or with vanilla sauce. Sometimes it is made with wine instead of milk, and therefore called Betrunkene Jungfrau, drunken virgin.

In India, the version is salted rather than sweet. The egg is beaten with milk, salt, green chili and chopped onion. Bread is dunked into this mixture and is deep fried in butter or cooking oil. In India locals enjoy seasoning the slices with ketchup.

History and geographic spread

French toast originated as a way to use day-old or stale bread (some breads, French bread especially, become stale after one day). Whereas a stale, crunchy bread might seem unappetizing, soaking the bread in eggs and frying it solved that problem. The precise origins of the recipe are unknown, although a version appears in the 4th century CE Roman cookbook, often attributed to Apicius ("Aliter dulcia: siligineos rasos frangis, et buccellas maiores facies. in lacte infundis, frigis [et] in oleo, mel superfundis et inferes." - "Another sweet: Break grated Sigilines (a kind of wheat bread), and make larger bites. Soak in milk, fry in oil, douse in honey and serve."). This was also known as Pan Dulcis.

French Toast for brunch.

Pain Perdu with syrup, fruit and creme anglaise.
Hong Kong style French Toast typically served in Chan Chan Tengs. Toppings include syrup and a slab of butter.

Saturday, 7 June 2014

Mario teaches typing

What? Are you fleeing for your lives?
It's curious how a little pretension can have lasting impacts on our lives.

I was "fortunate" enough to play Mario teaches typing many years ago. I can't pinpoint exactly when it was, but it was there, buried deep in a memory slot that I once thought would never be unearthed again. until the day came when I saw it again. Does this game cause me goosebumps. I can't understand why obscure mario games have such an unexpected effect on some of us. Maybe the explanation is in the main character himself: if you come to think of it, Mario, however famous he is, remains a vessel of secrets long after having cemented his celebrity cred. To this day, we know little of him and the more Mario games are released, the less he reveals even a part of himself. But unlike typical fiction-dwelling aloof males whom draw huge admiration on a daily basis, Mario's silence is not exactly alluring. It's relegated to such a low key level that all else in the game, even petty game play details, is more likely to pique the player's interest. maybe this is all done on purpose and there is a tantalisingly gruesome secret behind Mario's constantly having to lean on stoicism. We cannot know for certain.

Super Mario 64 isn't the first game where we get to see a capless Mario. 

Mario teaches typing does little to enhance Mario's laconic reputation. Still little is revealed about the iconic hero aside from the fact that at some point in his life he took up typing. Actually he even stepped up a notch and went on to teach typing. Reasoning that perosnal computer sales would see a steep rise, there should be a way to squeeze some moolah out of Nintendo fans willing to embrace the upcoming technology trend. Wow! As if your love for Nintendo hadn't been professed hard enough, now it's coupled with your passion for technology and one of the core tenets of computer sciences: your computer keyboard and the ability to exert utter control over what might as well be the most complete input device to interact with a machine that excels at manipulating ones and zeros.  Now that's right up your alley!
Luigi chased by a brindlebass is as violent as it gets.

Mario Teaches Typing includes three characters the player may play as: Mario, Luigi and Toadstool. The latter two were added only for gloss as there are no distinct game play features to distinguish one form the other. As the game starts, a pair of gloved hands is displayed to show which finger to use according to the required key. As the player clatters away at the keyboard, Mario strolls his way through typical albeit over-simplified floppy capacity versions of Super Mario Bros stages in an attempt to vanquish...Bowser? No. At the end of this rewarding experience the player is gifted with a chalkboard screen, in keeping up with the classroom-esque pattern, admonishing the player for his performance and how he should strive to be better next time. As if there ever was a next time. Statistics gild the otherwise unimaginative canvas, and the game re-starts.

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Pollution is causing males to become more feminised

Immature eggs found in the tests of a frightening number of male fish is a portent of the evils of a feminism-threated world. 

The researchers analysed samples of five mullet populations living on the Basque coast and the displaced feminised signs were spotted in three cases.

 As the UK lies blanketed beneath record levels of smog, fish from the mainland are (in a screwed sort of way) living proof the unwanted consequences of pollution in their own environment.
Members of the Cell Biology in Environmental Toxicology group have found irrefutable proof that male fish in the estuaries in Basque Country have inherited “feminised features” from chemical waste in the water. What is seeping into the waters are Endocrine disrupting chemicals, which act as estrogens, a substance responsible for reproductive dysfunctions according to information released by the Marine Environmental Research journal.

The offending chemicals can be found in everyday products such as pesticides and detergents, making their way to the estuaries after being assimilated in teh cleaning systems in water treatment plants. There has also been evidence of the pollutants being dumped from industrial and farming activities.

Sunday, 20 April 2014

The Van Hiele model - an outline

I reckon this blog isn't a ripe platform for discussing teaching approaches. It's just that the main focus here is to analyse nostalgia stuff that comes to mind at times. But since I've been involved with some teaching projects (in a skewed sort of way), I'd like to present a brief view on an underrated teaching approach which rose to recognition in the 70's to aid teachers who had been clueless about teaching geometry to their pupils. It is none other than the Van Hiele model (Van Hiele niveaus),created by a Dutch couple in 1957 and widely analysed by teachers and scholars alike in the late 70's and early 80's after proof of its core tenets holding true after it was shown that students at the lower levels of the Van Hiele model were unable to understand a single iota fed to them about geometric theorems and equations. It turned out their cognitive level was below the threshold necessary to be able to grasp the staple principles of planes and solid figures. The original work on which the theory is based was Structure and Insight: A theory of mathematical education (author unknown). The model is a classical example of wiskundedidactiek (mathematics education) reference and is specifically used for a didactic approach to teaching geometry at school level. Pierre van Hiele died on 1st November 2010 aged 101 at his home in Haag.

The basic premise behind this model  ,in a nutshell (weergegeven), is that learning geometry is achieved through gradual levels of cognitive awareness (graduele denkniveaus). Besides, the levels through which a student's progress is met bear no ties with their physiological age, although they do have specific eigenschappen (properties) which should become easier to observe following the levels' linear pattern. A specific level cannot be reached without the completion of a previous one, ie the learner's progress (de vordering van de leerlingen) follows the same succession of learnt competences towards utter understanding of the whole picture. Doing otherwise would be chewing more than one can swallow. Each level also makes use of its own language or linguistic symbols (linguïstische symbolen) and accompanying in-content relevance (inhoudbetekenis). It also holds that two students of diverging levels (verschillende niveaus) cannot understand each other. Odd, because the more competent peer is supposed to make sense out of what his inexperienced counterpart means as he was once at the same stage and should recall what what his gripes were at the time (the been there, done that argument).


The Van Hiele model consists of 5 levels, going from 0  to 5.
  • Niveau 0 : Visualisatie
  • Niveau 1 : Analyse
  • Niveau 2 : Ordening of classificatie
  • Niveau 3 : Informele deductie
  • Niveau 4 : Formeel

Retrieved from:

Monday, 24 March 2014


Omega Centauri is a spherical star cluster in the Centaurus constellation. There are strong leading indicators that the cluster is a remnant from a dwarf galaxy that once collide with the Milky Way. The system is isolated from any other celestial body when seen from the southern hemisphere, thus not visible anywhere in Europe. Its mass is not accurately determined by astronomers from European Southern Observatory in Chile.

Friday, 21 March 2014


Marie-Madeleine Pioche de La Vergne (Paris, 18 march 1634 - Aldaar, 25 may 1693), also known as Madame de la Fayette ) was a royal French writer. her most known work, La Princesse de Clèves, brought forth a new literary genre: the psychological novel. Her work is considered to be the first published French historic novel. She is widely regarded as one of the best french authoresses of the 17th century.


In 1659, Madame de La Fayette settled in Paris for good. Under a year she would debut as a writer by writing for a publishing house run by Huet and Jean Regnault de Segrais. In 1661, she carried through to completion a novel titled La Princesse de Montpensier, which would eventually be issued a year later under the nom de plume of Segrais. In 1669 the first review about Zaide was released, an adventure story issued again under Segrais' name but which again had probably been co-authored by the striving female writer. The second half of the work was finished in 1671.

Madale de La Fayette's most famous work, La Princesse de Clèves, presumed to have started in 1672, was first issued in march 1678 by someone part of her circle of acquaintances. A narrative from around 1560 based on the court of Henry II tells the life story of the princess of Chartres, whom was limerence-struck by the Duke of Nemours. Since he is a different man than the one to whom she is married, it consitutes one of the first literary accounts of female infidelity and an early example of game dynamics played out in the wild, complete with the whole alpha male and beta male roles played to the hilt. Along with a typical female rationalisation hamster going the predictable path of gravitating towards the man with the perceived higher sexual market.
Three more works authored by Madame de La Fayette were eventually issued several years after her death: La Contesse de Tende, Histoire d' Henriette d'Anglaterre and Mémoires de la Cour de France.

Monday, 3 March 2014

Feminism is eating away at the influence of the Western Church

The real query is, what's behind all the accurate link play responsible for the Church's stooping to such a toxic idealism?

Acquiescence to what feminism preaches is just one problem of the Catholic Church. Not that they're supposed to stamp out any ideology bent on wreaking havoc on biological male/female dynamics, they can just overlook it and get on with their lives. Maybe their topsy turvy state is not even a result of their involvement with feminism, but there has definitely been a feminisation of their thought pattern. Now the Church seems it fit to word everything in a weepy, treacly way. It's just like feminism was once an important member of the Church until they got away with some embarrassing secret their pontiff masters held, like a treasure that had been improperly squirrelled away.

By the looks of it, it's hard to draw a different conclusion. The Church once held more power than they could handle, an abundance of influence that made they almost come apart at the seams. Now they have been demoted to something people pay heed to in case they have nothing else to fret about. And this is talking about religious people. The number of irreligious people has never been on the rise like this before. It then becomes something of an ineffectual countermeasure to try to tailor their structure and teachings to appease feminism, since they're contrasting entities and it's impossible for both to boost themselves through shared resources without skewing their original doctrine. Invariably, one of them will bear the burden of heavily altering their point of view in favour of conformity with the other party. This becomes even more twisted because the Catholic Church has many been the historical venue of vicious raids, unfair trials and corruption running riot wherever they were allowed to flourish. Now with them appeasing to feminism agenda we're supposed to believe this will assuage the historical ailments they've1 inflicted on our civilisation.

It's akin to listening to a senile aunt. "My heart weeps for the tragic loss of precious life, and I grieve the loss of those due to the lack of compassion of this world.

Enough with the compassion crap already! This is the same political entity that used to raise arms to do away with whatever opposition they ran into while making forays into new territory in the name of "progress".

Which leads me into the other problem: the Church’s ecumenism. This implied the ditching of their role to herald a life based on faith. Now a rift has begun to form from within the Church's upper hierarchy members, with some favouring third world immigration while some opposing the death penalty. But the real political powder keg rests on the Catholic Church in Europe, which purposefully enforces immigration from non-christian groups into traditionally Christian sites at the same time they exhort against xenophobia.

It's enough to make die hard churchgoers quit going to church.

Hong Kong 97 (snes videogame)

After seeing numerous games about the withdrawal of a group from the authority of a state and the subsequent transfer of sovereignty to their former Union, I have concluded that most of them suck, whether they be evil businesses plotting to wipe out a country's entire population, the deployment of murderous agents to carry out the equally gruesome duty or the resulting fracas being the main plot of a misbegotten game. Unfortunately for the elements populating this game, all three happened in a terrible unison. Things do not bode well for the target audience (if there ever was any).

Hong Kong 97 is a 1995 game by HappySoft, a homebrew game company for the SNES. A game designed through means that many would consider criminal. The in-game plot involve the return of Hong Kong to their rightful sovereign state, the People's Republic of China after years under the rule of the Brits. This took place in 1997, at the same time that crime rates were on the rise. This was pegged to the fact that people from the Chinese mainland started to mass immigrate to the tiny nation, forcing the local government to cast about for a solution. They do find one in the hope of using the services of Chin (Jackie Chan in his Wheels on Meals persona). He makes for the stricken country with one instruction only: to eliminate all 1.2 billion people of China. The plot alone is enough to make the game atrocious enough. But Chinese's hubris won't allow them to make light of the situation. They have been overseeing the whole situation all along and have plotted to offset the scheduled mass killing with a lethal weapon of their own: the resurrection of "Tong Shau Ping" (actually played by Deng Xiaoping). Curious tidbit:

"When the game was released in 1995, Deng Xiaoping, said to be dead in the game, was still alive. However, he did die months before the handover, which is when the game's plot actually takes place."

Now on to gameplay.

Upon turning on the game a short rendition of I love Beijing Tiananmen plays relentlessly in a loop. They could have made the loop longer, but I guess that making it the way they did made it somewhat amusing. The voiced sample of this sung track also provides a worthy distraction from the threadbare tone of the game. It'd become unplayable if they had put on something else than this soundtrack. However, the game doesn't contain any sound effect, so making a sound test option would be redundant.

With the helpful addition of this tune, it's time to select which language to play the game in. At least the game offers 3 options for the linguistic savvy, although this might put people off a bit because the text in the English version contains some easy to catch flubs. I wasn't able to judge the textual quality in the Japanese and Chinese scripts, but if they're on par with their Anglicized counterpart, things would look gloomy for those wanting to practice either Japanese or Chinese (or both).

Next up is the storyline. The basic premise is the concern brought on by droves of people rushing in from the mainland. That would be China. So the government strikes a deal with the protagonist and off he goes. The action stage kicks off without any prompting whatsoever so if the player is careless he could easily have his ass handed to him. He is supposed to be ready to dodge awkward sprites of people, cars and bullets, sometimes in a wiggling pattern. The enemies' post-death animation comprises at times of something that I could not describe. It seems to be a bloody likeliness of something, but I was unable to discern further. Some enemies (using indefinite pronouns this often makes me uncomfortable, but this helps define the path that this game has taken so far) drop pellets of invincibility. That or instant death. Again, I was at a loss to differentiate one from the other. After defeating enough enemies, a boss battle takes place. The MS Paint-style severed head of (presumably) Deng Xiaoping. It's a hard boss battle and I couldn't vanquish him to find out what wondrous mysteries awaits me. Most likely, you'll die too, and then back to the tile screen you go. Then the big wheel turns.

Dismal Charnel extends its deepest sympathy and condolence to the victims, condemning the ruthless attack this game brought on the bereft families.

Listen to the soundtrack here.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln (Hodgenville, 12th february 1809 - Washington D.C., 15th april 1865_ was the sixteenth president of the United States. he served from 1861 until his untimely death in 1865. Lincoln was the first United States president to be murdered while serving office. He would eventually be considered one of the greatest presidents that country ever had. He was praised for his instance and leadership skills during the American Civil War, abolition of slavery, consolidation of national government and the modernisation of the economy.

Sunday, 2 February 2014


Within the domain of philosophy, materialism comprises of the view that our existence is ruled by physical matter, although the term physicalism has been increasingly associated with this doctrine as it has been shown more often than not that matter itself re-arranges itself into forces and energy, earning itself the recognition of being one of the most prominent denizens in the universe. It is also true its roots can be traced back to Greek atomism, arising in the modern period in Hobbes's Leviathan. Another definition for materialism holds that it's the excessive desire for goods and wealth. This definition bears little resemblance to the philosophical use of the term, even though the lingering ambiguity is potentially exploited to stir up controversy against an undifferentiated materialism. This is also the meaning of the term which leads to a life unguarded of the evils that this world has to offer.

The term can be suitably employed to refer to the overall attitude or behaviour of attachment to material goods and the enjoyment derived of being in contact therewith. It also relates to similar pleasures attained from upholding monetary values whilst holding a complete disregard to anything that lies outside the grasp of those confined to a material realm. The unbridled possessing and hoarding of wealth is a character's trait typical of a materialist person ( in the pejorative sense of the term). in the arts scenario, materialism means an inclination to give things a realistic and sensual likeness so as to make them simulate life better.

Below is a neat passage which fitfully sums up the concept of materialism, explaining both the philosophical as well as its down-to-earth application by D.M. Armstrong from Oxford Companion of the Mind:

Classifications of theories are bad masters, but may be useful servants. In the following classification of the main theories of the mind–body relationship upheld by philosophers, it is to be understood that the positions sketched are 'ideal types' to which actually held positions may approximate in different degrees.

If we think of mind and body as two opponents in a tug-of-war, then we can distinguish among theories that try to drag body, and matter generally, over into the camp of mind; those that try to drag mind over into the camp of body; and those theories where an equal balance is maintained. This yields a division into mentalist, materialist (physicalist), and dualist theories.

It is convenient to begin by considering dualism. The major position here is Cartesian dualism, named after Descartes, the central figure in post-medieval philosophical discussion of the mind–body problem. For a Cartesian dualist the mind and body are both substances; but while the body is an extended, and so a material, substance, the mind is an unextended, or spiritual, substance, subject to completely different principles of operation from the body. It was this doctrine that Gilbert Ryle caricatured as the myth of the ghost in the machine. It is in fact a serious and important theory.

Dualist theories are also to be found in a more sceptical form, which may be called bundle dualism. The word 'bundle' springs from David Hume's insistence that, when he turned his mental gaze upon his own mind, he could discern no unitary substance but simply a 'bundle of perceptions', a succession or stream of individual mental items or happenings. Hume thought of these items as non-physical. A bundle dualist is one who dissolves the mind in this general way, while leaving the body and other material things intact.

Besides dividing dualism into Cartesian and bundle theories, it may also be divided according to a different principle. Interactionist theories hold, what common sense asserts, that the body can act upon the mind and the mind can act upon the body. For parallelist theories, however, mind and body are incapable of acting upon each other. Their processes run parallel, like two synchronized clocks, but neither influences the other. There is an intermediate view according to which, although the body (in particular, the brain) acts upon and controls the mind, the mind is completely impotent to affect the body. This intermediate view, especially when combined with a bundle theory of mind, is the doctrine of epiphenomenalism. It allows the neurophysiologist, in particular, to recognize the independent reality of the mental, yet acknowledge the controlling role of the brain in our mental life and give a completely physicalist account of the brain and the factors which act upon it.

Mentalist theories arise naturally out of dualist theories, particularly where the dualist position is combined with Descartes' own view that the mind is more immediately and certainly known than anything material. If this view is taken, as it was by many of the greatest philosophers who succeeded Descartes, it is natural to begin by becoming sceptical of the existence of material things. The problem that this raises was then usually solved by readmitting the material world in a dematerialized or mentalized form. Berkeley, for instance, solved the sceptical problem by reducing material things to our sensations 'of' them. Berkeley thus reaches a mentalism where the mind is conceived of as a spiritual substance, but bodies are reduced to sensations of these minds.

It is possible to combine Berkeley's reduction of matter to sensations with a bundle account of the mind. In this way is reached the doctrine of neutral monism, according to which mind and matter are simply different ways of organizing and marking off overlapping bundles of the same constituents. This view is to be found in Ernst Mach and William James, and was adopted at one stage by Bertrand Russell. The 'neutral' constituents of mind and body are, however, only dubiously neutral, and the theory is best classified as a form of mentalism.

Just as Cartesian dualism may move towards mentalism, so it may also move towards materialism. Surprisingly, Descartes' own particular form of the theory lends itself to this development also. Descartes was one of the pioneers in arguing for an anti-Aristotelian view of the material world generally and the body in particular. First, this involved the rejection of all teleological principles of explanation in the non-mental sphere. Second, it involved taking the then revolutionary, now scientifically orthodox, view that organic nature involves no principles of operation that are not already to be found operative in non-organic nature. Human and animal bodies are simply machines (today we might say physicochemical mechanisms) working according to physical principles.

A view of this sort naturally leads on to the suggestion that it may be possible to give an account of the mind also along the same principles. In this way, a completely materialist account of nature is reached, and so a materialist account of the mind.

The word 'materialism' sometimes misleads. The materialist is not committed to a Newtonian 'billiard-ball' account of matter. Keith Campbell has spoken of the 'relativity of materialism' — its relativity to the physics of the day. Materialism is best interpreted as the doctrine that the fundamental laws and principles of nature are exhausted by the laws and principles of physics, however 'unmaterialistic' the latter laws and principles may be. Instead of speaking of 'materialism' some writers use the term 'physicalism'.

Materialist accounts of the mind may be subdivided into peripheralist and centralist views. A more familiar name for the peripheralist view is behaviorism: the view that possession of a mind is constituted by nothing more than the engaging in of especially sophisticated types of overt behaviour, or being disposed to engage in such behaviour in suitable circumstances. Behaviourism as a philosophical doctrine must be distinguished from the mere methodological behaviourism of many psychologists who do not wish to base scientific findings upon introspective reports of processes that are not publicly observable.

Very much more fashionable at the present time among philosophers inclined to materialism is the centralist view, which identifies mental processes with purely physical processes in the central nervous system. This view is sometimes called central-state materialism or, even more frequently, the identity view. Unlike behaviourism, it allows the existence of 'inner' mental processes which interact causally with the rest of the body.

It remains to call attention to one important variety of theory intermediate between orthodox dualism and orthodox materialism. It is a 'one-substance' view, denying that minds are things or collections of things set over against the material substance which is the brain. But it does involve a dualism of properties, because brain processes, besides their physical properties, are conceived of as having further non-physical properties which are supposed to make the brain processes into mental processes. Such views may be called attribute or dual-attribute theories of the mind–body relationship. A theory of this sort could be said to be a variety of identity view, since it also holds that mental processes are identical with certain brain processes.

According to the doctrine of panpsychism, not simply brain processes but all physical things have a mental side, aspect, or properties, even if in a primitive and undeveloped form.

Although the dual-attribute view is important, it inherits the considerable difficulty and confusion which surrounds the philosophical theory of properties. There are many difficulties in giving a satisfactory account of what it is for a thing to have a property, and these difficulties transmit themselves to this sort of theory of the mind–body relationship.

(Published 1987)

Monday, 27 January 2014

Research ethics

Research ethics deals with the research objectives expected to be accomplished whilst striking a balance between research interests and the observance of universal morals and value for life. At the core of such interests lie the call for accountability on the part of the research staff as well as what possible side effects could occur to research subjects and society.

Examples of socially relevant problems of research ethics include the areas of animal testing and experimentation on live human subjects, stem cell research, genetics, research for military defence purposes and data protection.

Personal view on Muslims

I was on the point of writing about something else entirely unrelated to the current title, but this is what struck my fancy. Having got the idea while behind a crash barrier, I've come to the realisation that a common can of worms seems set to go unaddressed until the end of time: Islam terrorism. First off, I reckon that Islam isn't only about terrorism and that there's much more to it than men hijacking planes to commit suicide attacks and devoted mosque-goers constantly bantering through a mounting need to murder non-muslims as well as muslims who belong in a different sect of Islam. I, too, reckon that behind the controversy veiled behind the Western concept of Islam lies a whole history of culture and traditions. For instance, once I was fortunate enough to meet a true muslim and he was a true gentleman in his mannerisms. He spoke 3 languages- Arabian, English and French- and the transition from one to the other was made effortlessly. He wasn't just an educated Arab. Although he was observant of islamist rites, I noticed that this never hindered his intellectual faculties and so he was never out of the loop. However, it's exactly this what is disturbing. He's living proof that Muslims can be well-meaning and savvy in more ways than one. Problem, he's also a specimen, a rare one at that. So much so that the remainder of muslims I have had the opportunity to happen upon are nothing like him. Most of them are bent on spouting drivel about world conquest and that eventually everyone will become a muslim and those who don't are doomed. This, or that people have no choice but to get on with that and this sharia law crap. No to mention the way they treat women. I have also come across women in islam and I have found out that they have no individual personality of their own at all. Maybe it's just an impression. But this concept has been imprinted on my mind since I saw first hand how alike they all behave. A overly humble demeanour, outright apathy about anything and they way they looked at us without curiosity. So much for tolerance.

But worst of all is the way that Western authorities apparently view them. I, for one, am tired of their relentless attempt to softpedal the threat of radical Islam. This is just downright outrageous, to say the least. It may be true that it's a minority of muslims who take part in terrorist plots. But then we'd be talking only about the number of people directly involved. What about those who have taught them that Islam is the only true path to follow and anyone who dares steer clear is a hectic unworthy of life? What if the own environment where they were raised was to blame for them becoming terrorists? If tolerance to those who follow a different faith were taught early on in life, it's unlikely that those heinous acts would be perpetrated against non-muslims.

To boot, we also have the problem of moderate muslims failing to admonish their naughty religious kin. Of course, it's only radical muslims who go to the extreme of blowing stuff up for their religion's sake. But one has to wonder how they are ever allowed to manifest this way. They should be prosecuted and have charges for crime pressed against them and, eventually, be punished accordingly. If their well-behaved brethren are unable to get a handle on them, something is amiss with their thinking system. However, this pales in comparison to what I deem not only to be the main problem, but what really gets my (and anyone's with a common sense) gall is the way that radical islamic teaching is widespread within muslim territory:

The distorted, nihilistic bigotry and hatred spawned by said teachings have always been the common ground on which terrorist attacks are laid. If there ever was any driving force behind terrorism in the world as it know it today, it's radical islamic teachings. Again, it boils down to Sharia, Islam's universal law which is good at preaching hate towards the homnosexual and demonising those who pursue other religious doctrines (or none at all). Its misogynist underpinnings account for all of the appalling mistreatment and murder of women. And this coming from someone who is against feminism only goes to show how messed up the whole thing is.

In a nutshell,  radical islam is a powerful threat to all open-minded and caring folks in this world. Not only should it be called into question. It should be put an end to, for good.

Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Braindead 13

Brings back memories of Peter Jackson's most famous film: Braindead (aka Dead Alive)

Doing things on a whim sure does have neat benefits. For one thing, the predictability patterns is gone and life seems more enjoyable without the dreaded viper of convention. This happened to me the other day when I decided to peek at an unknown game. At first I was unsure about what to expect. I even had some reservations about Braindead 13 because I had never come into touch with this game. I just couldn't fathom what would befall on me during the experiment.

But what is the merit backing up Braindead 13's claim to fame? Why does this one game succeed so well at enthralling me? Why have I suddenly found myself checking this game time and again even though neither the ending nor the death scenes ever change? I just can't explain why. Maybe it's a simple premise that makes it out to be much more than what I could have expected. It's a quick time event, which many frown upon for varying reasons, not the least of which is that there is little interaction between player and in-game environment. But if you come to think of it, all games are of this kind. There is only a limited amount of actions to perform in a game, no matter how over the top they may be. You can't do anything that the developers didn't predict, so you too wind up trapped in some warped up version of a tiny universe crafted by a fellow human being for your entertainment's sake. It's only that quick-time event games make no bones about this condition imposed by default on any player.
Yellow backgrounds are darn effective at instilling fear in people

Thus, Braindead 13 can also be called an interactive movie-game, released for DOS in 1995 developed by ReadySoft. It would be ported to the major mainstream consoles the following year. The main playable character is a twenty-something computer ace whom is one day called to service a computer at a haunted castle. His customer is none other than Nero Neurosis, an evil brain creature who settles on the idea of slaying the unsuspecting protagonist after a slight run-in. What started out as a mild insult exchange quickly spiralled into a deadly and frightening speed chase throughout the castle. What is most terrifying about this  hunt is Fritz, the wicked brain's faithful hand and personal mass murderer. What follows is pure gold as the player has a wide choice of paths to follow to get to the end of the quest without being ripped to shreds by the castle's many bloodthirsty dwellers.


  • Lance Galahad-  oversteps his bounds and doesn't check his smart mouth in time, insulting the main villain in the process. He quickly incurs the bad goons' wrath by committing one slip-up, but his botched first encounter with this customer may cost him dearly.

  • Dr. Nero Neurosis - the obligatory stock mad scientist's brain in a vat. He gets offended so easily he might as well just have been the Dormouse in another lifetime. 

  • Fritz - the ever loyal henchman who will stop at nothing to bring immolation upon Lance. A dual hook setup for hands doesn't hinder this imp from carrying about quite a haul with just about anything that may come in handy for a quick kill.

  • Vivi- players who make it through the early sections of the game will be awarded with the dazzling beauty of this true vampire vixen. Nice additions to her already stunning figure are her southern belle accent and her penchant for putting unwilling patrons through life or death situations in her "funeral salon".

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Manos- Hands of Fate

     It's a moot point going on about how this movie has achieved pop icon status. Nearly everyone into B-movies has watched this at least once. So it might surprise some how come I hadn't watched this until some days ago. What is more bizarre is that I only got to watch this as this flick is now in the public domain; I wouldn't be able to do so otherwise. I almost gave up on reviewing this altogether.

Before delving into the plot, a word of warning about this movie seems lordly at this point. The movie was made under a very tight budget by someone without a lot of directing experience. This alone should set off warning klaxons in many viewers' heads. However, there is more to this. The movie has a grainy look that remains with it to its very end and the sound was apparently not mixed very well. Furthermore, the director also rushed through edits during the post-production stage. This becomes easy to notice after a few seconds into the movie, where a long driving scene takes place without nothing else at all happening. The ensuing shots show a car coming out on to a single carriageway, turning inland through a sequence of sparse shrubs lining the curb line. 10 or 20 kilometres further on, they drove across the hills for what appeared to be hours, into a landscaped of unadorned simplicity. According to info found on, there was an intended purpose behind the disjointed driving scene:

The entire nine-minute opening sequence, which consisted of the main characters driving around looking for their hotel with minimal dialogue or effect on the plot, was the result of such neglect: Warren had likely intended to include opening credits over these shots, but either forgot to add them or did not have the post-production budget to do so.

Is this the excitement of donning the Torgo garb or taking care of the place?

While it's easy to deride a movie for its forgetfulness to make amends on its original cut, the concept also strikes me as interesting as it could engender a host of unpredictable moments in the film, contributing to a far more rewarding experience. In fact, I became outright hooked up on mercurial aspects of film after my none too pleasant experience watching The Twilight Series. I want to get over it as quickly as possible, even if it means watching Manos: The Hands of Fate all the way through.

The family on an outing eventually found their way to a mysterious shack and are promptly "greeted" by Torgo. This is, for many, the movie's high point. Torgo was supposedly screened as a satyr, but came off more like a martyr. The brooding figure is more sinister-looking than his ominous master and their deity: Manos himself. It also bears mentioning that Torgo has a hard to tell personality. It's not clear from the beginning what his intentions were. It is eventually revealed late on, but in such an unconvincing light that the viewer has to wonder what prompted his motivations.

Plotwise, the scene is there to introduce the gloomy caretaker to the audience and the travelling family. They insist on asking him which is the way to Valley Lodge, to which he dryly replies there is no such place. Understandably, the wife is uneasy about Torgo's disposition. She suggests Mike - her hunsband- they should depart the premises willy nilly. Mike eventually drives home the point that "they" would rather stay and leave in the morning. Torgo grudgingly lets them stay, all the while remarking that "the Master would not approve". He says that like 15 times. Then, all of a sudden, the scenery acquires a stronger daylight hue, although it was supposed to be getting darker, and then Torgo starts his famous "Torgo gait". Relying on information found on wikipedia (hurrah to the internet) reveals that the character of Torgo wore metal riggings under his trousers to give him a goat-like look. This is coherent with his overall looks, including the beard, battered apparel and even the way he moves his eyes. John Reynolds, the man behind such an astounding character, actually was the one put his soul into this movie. The remainder of the characters are a sad-looking bunch in comparison. Oh, and there is even a custom tune set to go along with the Torgo gait, aptly titled the Torgo suite.

The Manos staff is mightier than the sword!

What transpires next is not easy to describe. As stated earlier, the movie doesn't follow a pattern for events to unfold within a coherent whole. All that we know is that the family's pet dog dies, slain by some unseen beast. Possibly the master's faithful doberman. The master does appear later on, has a stare-off with Torgo and urges all of his six wives to chase after the suspecting guests. Torgo wants one of the wives for himself and he already took his pick: Mike's wife. The master will have none of this, but at this point his authority is seriously called into question as he fails to break up a catfight that embroils all of his consorts. For some intangible reason, he lets it goo on for what seems to be 20 minutes (movie time). The movie's flaws also become apparent at this point. The sound is barely audible and the acting does not help matters. In another section of the mess that is the plot, Mike's mind constantly switches states between wanting to leave through the desert on foot and trying to start the car. He can't settle on either idea and so he just beckons his family to go back to the Master's dreaded abode and bide their time until dawn breaks so they decide on a better course of action. As the head of a family, one would expect more from him.

The movie ends where it started, with the family on their way to valley lodge with the action-packed dwelling still prominent from the background. Only this time, Mike is the new Torgo. I will go out on a limb and say this is not exactly the greatest movie ever. In fact, it is far from it. On the other hand, it is impossible to imagine how it could have been otherwise. There is little room for improvement to be made because the concept behind the movie demanded just that: a simple movie with a creepy pattern, which was neither supposed to be easily spotted nor overlooked by careful lookers. It was just supposed to be something that would get stuck with the viewer and not leave, but haunt him for years to come. Except that, any attempt at making a haunting impression was upstaged by the movie's incredible production, which is more likely to etch a permanent mark into b-movie fans.

Watch the entire movie here.