2009 keyword searches

My friend Michael recently did a post like this and it reminded me that I haven’t done one for a while. It basically boils down to entertaining yourself by looking at the various keyword searches that led people to your blog throughout the year. It’s amazing the things people search for online.

Michael blogged a lot this year about sexual ethics and had numerous very interesting searches ranging from “is it still necrophilia if i’m conscious” to “bisexual family orgy” to “how to do islamic stoning”. I can’t promise you anything quite so broken and disturbing. There is a lot of quite amusing stuff though. So, here we go:

The amount of Avatar related searches I had is simply astounding. That movie has certainly lodged in the peoples’ psyche for the moment. Literally thousands of hits to my site were from various searches like this one due my Avatar 3D review.

I hear ya, buddy. I hear ya.

Err…?

The bible code has answers for everything, clearly.

This came up a lot in various permutations, due to this post about black magic being used against the president of Indonesia. Allegedly. I was amused that there was an interesting spread of queries along similar lines:

Fight fire with fire.

Can’t leave out the old Hindus.

When it comes to obscurely academic searches, I thought this was pretty specific:

Then there’s the usual lesbian searches that I always get lots of. Don’t ask me why, I don’t think I post about lesbians all that much. Then again, I’ve just said the word twice in this post…

A carpet? Unless we’re talking about the Greeks, when it would be a population. Or perhaps an island. Suggestions?

And, if so, which part?

Sounds like someone is gathering ammunition before opening that closet door.

This came up in the comments of a post a little while ago. I think some people have a bit of a problem with the definition of acronym, though. Especially this person:

Might I suggest “U”? Oh, the irony.

Just as dumb. But happier, at least.

Presumably you mean Star Wars. I thought pretty much everything was inappropriate for Catholics.

These searches almost rivalled the Avatar searches for numbers. It’s all about the post that will not die. It was a harmless little whimsical post a year ago (almost to the day) about fools that dress up and pretend to be superheroes. Turns out they get upset easily and there’s an entire subculture going on and a bunch of people that take it very seriously don’t like being lumped in with the wannabe fools. That post is still getting comments as recently as this week! This search was probably more accurate:

Let’s move on.

What are they and where can I get some!?

Depends on the size of the post box, surely?

Sorry, mate. Can’t help you with that one.

Not so much a search as a statement.

You want dark fantasy stories about people fucking or are you just an angry person?

Stay away from Stephenie Meyer and you should be fine.

I’m not sure I want to know what this person actually meant.

Yeah, fuck ’em. What have they ever done for us?

I’m not touching this one. My wife reads this blog.

You mean like this:

Yes. Yes he is.

I get this one all the time. And it still makes me laugh.

Is there such a thing? How do you measure it?

Hmm. Easier to measure, but I wouldn’t know anything about this.

Yes it is.

And yet you used it to make this point. Ooh…

Maybe step away from Google for a little while? Also, learn to use the word “seriously”.

I don’t think you’ll find any here, but let me know if you do.

A paragraph?

The scrotum is the world of the body? This implies an entire series of bodyparts covered in the World Of The Body. Might be quite interesting. A bit annoying that only scrotum wound up here though.

And finally, there’s this:

You cheap bastard! Buy the book and find out.

Happy new year everyone. I wonder what bizarre searches 2010 will bring.

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Ten words you need to stop misspelling

There are a few words that are commonly misspelled or simply used incorrectly. I’m quickly becoming a fan The Oatmeal comics and today they’ve got a good list of ten commonly misspelled words, along with that special brand of Oatmeal drawing and comedy. The words they cover are:

Lose/Loose

Weird not Wierd

Their/They’re/There

Your/You’re

It’s/Its

Definitely

Effect/Affect

Weather/Whether

A lot not alot*

Then/Than

Find the comic and explanations here.

* Also in this category there should be a discussion of any+, such as anywhere or any more. Or Anymore and any where. There’s no clear line here and some people connect any word with any in it and some are selective. Personally, I’m selective. Your thoughts?

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Slice Of Life by Paul Haines – review

Slice Of LifeI’ll start by saying that I’m lucky enough to call Paul Haines a friend, so I don’t want any accusations of friendly bias. Think what you like, you cynical bastards.

You may remember that I was going on about the X6 novella anthology from Coeur De Lion earlier this year. There was this post about the book and this post after I’d been to the official launch. Paul had a novella in there called Wives. It is, without a doubt, the best thing I’ve read this year. Buy X6 just for Wives if nothing else. Here’s hoping it gets that Aurealis Award it’s been nominated for.

Anyway, a while ago I picked up Paul’s collection of short stories published through The Mayne Press called Slice Of Life. This, his second collection, comprises seventeen short stories, sixteen reprinted from a wide variety of original publications, and one shiny new one. Well, maybe not shiny. Kinda tarnished, with spots of something horribly unidentifiable on it. But it’s a new one. Another friend once described Paul’s work to me as “stories you can smell.” It’s a good description.

Paul’s stories are visceral, horrible, bile coated things swollen with fear and paranoia. They’re also darkly funny and uncomfortably honest. If you think he’s going to take you somewhere pretty nasty, he probably is. All the stories in here are speculative fiction, but there’s a wide range of styles – fantasy, science fiction, horror, “Paul Haines”. He really should be a genre unto himself. Especially as he casts himself as the protagonist in most stories.

The writing is excellent, the ideas bizarre and profound. Paul is a sick fuck, and I know he wouldn’t mind me saying so. In fact, he’d probably consider it a compliment. The thing that makes Paul’s writing great is that he’s fearless. If he’s following a theme, he’ll follow it to the hideous, bitter end. These are not stories for the faint-hearted or easily offended. They are stories for anyone with a love of powerful, engaging writing. I loved every yarn in this collection, though my favourites would probably be Inducing and A Tale Of The Interferers: Necromancing The Bones. The Slice Of Life stories themselves, a series of tales interconnected, are also excellent. Paul says of the stories: “Explicit, violent, mysogynistic and nasty… stories are heavily cemented in my real life, and I love blurring them into the unreal.”

Other people have said:

“Exhuberant, profane and totally whacked out” – Ellen Datlow

“visceral and thoughtful, unashamedly masculine and unabashedly emotional, and beautifully and meticulously crafted” – Martin Livings

“the anxiety in these stories is palpable. Love the paranoia! Love the self loathing. Love the psychosis” – Aurealis: Australian Fantacy & Science Fiction

Do yourself a favour. Buy this book and see just what is possible with spec fic. You’ll be supporting small press in Australia and you’ll get a great book. On top of that, all proceeds will go to Paul to help him fight cancer. Good on ya, Paul – nice work.

Get the book here. Do it. Now!

EDIT: Here’s Paul’s own website. Check it out.

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Irony of the week, from Peter Jensen

Ah, this did make me laugh. It’s the belief equivalent of “my dad can beat up your dad”.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

[Sydney’s Anglican Archbishop Peter Jensen] Speaking to the congregation at St Andrews Cathedral on Christmas morning, he said recent polling showed Australians were religious and still looking for an answer on the purpose of life.

“But many of the answers are superstitious, such as astrology,” he said. “Superstition can never satisfy the longings of the human heart and they cannot mend our brokenness.”

Not superstitions like astrology, anyway. Superstitions like Christianity, on the other hand, are the perfect solution. In something that seems like it was written for comedy, something that surely can’t possibly have been said without a wry smile, he added, “Again, those who seek for truth and insist on the highest standards of truth are to be commended.”

Try reading a different book for a change, Jensen. That would be commendable.

Happy Christmas, everyone! *sigh*

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I’m starting a movement

And no, before anyone gets smart in the comments, not a bowel movement. More a movement in response to the season (which is a kind of bowel movement in itself). Christians are always bleating on about “Put the Christ back into Christmas!” I’m sick and tired of that.

I’m starting a new movement:

Get your Christmas out of Sol Invictus!

Who’s with me? It makes just as much sense as the Christians harping on.

Anyway, here’s hoping that this season of manufactured madness doesn’t drive you all completely mental and I hope all readers of The Word have as happy a time as they can. May you all be safe and well and enjoy a happy, healthy and productive 2010.

See you on the flip side.

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