Kerbal

Do not buy Kerbal Space Program if you like having a life. 

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The Birth of Empire: The British East India Company BBC2

So I’m watching this thing on BBC2 about the East India Company and this struck me:

In about 1605 a small group of British traders turned up in India, the world’s second largest economy, and started building factories. 300 years later the empire they built went tits up. In about 1995 a small group of British traders turned up in China, the world’s second largest economy, and started building factories……….

Immediately they turned to the ruthless pursuit of avarice, hard drinking and gratuitous womanising. Nothing ever changes, does it? 

Standard British male uniform for hot countries: Dark blue shirt, khaki trousers, dark coloured shoes. Everytime you see a British presenter abroad, that’s what they wear. That’s like working dress for British people abroad in hot countries or something and no1 dress would be the linen suit, dark blue shirt, and panama hat. 

Actually recently I’ve been watching everything I can by Niall Ferguson and I’ve bought two of his books and generally reading up on the British Empire and it’s actually struck me that actually we’re just back to the start of the 17th Century, the conditions are almost identical. We didn’t build the Empire because we were rich, we did it because we were dirt poor and it was dirt poor Brits going abroad to make money by importing things that couldn’t be found in Europe. 

I think that we in the UK faced with the rise of new superpowers like India and China have a choice, either we can be insular and parochial and worry about our European back yard or we can do what our ancestors did and be bold and commercially aggressive, go out into the world and trade, loot, invest and talk our way to dominance again. We still have a commonwealth out there, a commonwealth that is rich in natural resources, speaks our language, more or less, shares our institutions, more or less, if we joined with them in a single EU style economic zone it would form the fourth largest economy on Earth in geographically and strategically important places. A foot in Europe, a foot close to Asia a foot in the Americas, and maybe even a foot in Africa. 

Food

I’ve come to the realisation that eating is something I really love. I’m rarely interested in anything fancy but around………..midnight……a good selection of cold cuts, crusty bread, butter, pickled onions and cheese is something I often crave. Naturally this needs to be washed down with a good strong beer.

Gianna

I have reached the realisation that my life will never be complete until I spend a wild night of passionate and unrestrained sex with Gianna Michaels. Since we all know everyone through seven people, please pass on this message. 

I can now envision a situation where I’m having lunch at S’s sometime in May or June and I’m like “I have a date with Gianna Michaels next week” and there is silence. I look up, S looks up. We look at each other. There is silence. She shrugs and shakes her head with a smile, bats her eyelids. “What?” I say. “I’m not even surprised; your life is so random that this isn’t even surprising. How did you swing that?” “Actually I put it on my blog and told all my readers to tell everyone figuring that everyone knows everyone through seven people” “I see. Quite ingenious, well done.” “Thanks”. “When’s the wedding?” “Wedding!?!” “What’s the least likely and most random thing that could happen in this situation, and how often does the least likely and most random thing happen to you?” “Oh shit” “Yeeees. Exactly. More wine?” “Is it too early for the whisky?” “What’s that phrase you always use? Something about the sun?” “The sun’s well over the yardarm?” 

Books

One has just purchased Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World, On China, Diplomacy, The Cash Nexus and When China Rules the World. I like big book orders like this, I like buying books the way women like buying shoes, only one of these activities is beneficial for the intellect. On China and Diplomacy are by that bastard Kissinger, who I semi-admire for being a bastard. On one hand he’s a war criminal and responsible for genocide and various crimes against humanity, but then on the other he’s a smooth operator and I have a soft spot for Machiavellianism. I actually quite Machiavellian myself as S frequently points out. One feels a slight feeling of being given access to the black magician’s spell book when one reads Kissinger. We’ll see what they’re like. Fuck knows where I’m going to put them.

 

 

 

Pearly

Watching Girl with a Pearl Earring which is surprisingly not bad. I particularly like the 17th century dirty talk like “What colour is your hair?” and the dirty bitch is all “Brown”, filthy dutch tart that she is. We all know what these dutch girls are like. Well I suppose she’s not too dirty, she refuses to actually show him her hair. I suppose a girl must have some morals even if she is engaged in making pornographic images so that Vermeer’s patron has some fapworthy material.