Archive for the ‘Monkey Business, Miscellaneous’ Category

The Nose Was Invented To Support Spectacles

Freud suggested that the desire to Know the Truth comes from sexual curiosity. From whence, then, comes sexual curiosity? Why should an infant desire to know what tackle the other sex has, how babies are made and so forth, unless there is a prior hardwiring to know the Truth? The young of most or all […]

Posted on January 15, 2011 at 11:58 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

Take That, Tolstoy

Who says that a single individual can have but little influence on the world? A friend of a friend has followed a complete revision of everything known about arson investigation. For thirty-five years, it seems, one set of views prevailed among all the experts; recently, however, this has been shown to be totally false and […]

Posted on January 16, 2011 at 12:19 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

The Birth Of Nations

Bikers, hippie communes and social-workers’ problem families can probably show us how a tribal culture starts – some alpha male gathers some sycophants around him and heads out into the bush, or starts to boff his daughters the way his great epiphany told him to do, and hundreds of years later along come Western liberal […]

Posted on January 17, 2011 at 11:44 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

What To Do With Our Incompetents

Whatever would we do without the new states produced by the fall of Communism and subsequent secession struggles? Mediocre officials and academics would have nowhere to go to in order to lecture and feel superior. It is the same syndrome as you find in expats: we can tell the natives what our home “culture” is […]

Posted on January 18, 2011 at 11:27 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

Repeat Custom

There are two business models in every trade, from plumber to prostitute: namely repeat custom and rip-off. The smaller the market and the better the market information, the less successful the latter strategy will be; and contrariwise. The legendary rube who is sold the Brooklyn Bridge is acting rationally in the context of the village […]

Posted on January 19, 2011 at 10:06 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

Facebook In The Age of Steam

One of the many reasons why I will have nothing to do with Facebook is that it reminds me so much of my parents’ way with Christmas cards. They decorated the fireplace wall with all the Christmas cards they had received, and were immensely proud of the score, and especially of having received more than […]

Posted on January 20, 2011 at 07:32 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

Atevi Wiring

C.J. Cherryh’s Foreigner cycle seems like a first-contact story but runs deeper. As usual, her aliens are quite largely based on the Japanese, but their key and momentous difference is that they lack the neurochemical wiring for any kind of affinity other than loyalty to a leader, an instinct she calls man’chi, which it is […]

Posted on January 21, 2011 at 07:34 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

The Power Of Canned Laughter?

A certain hotel believes in what some German new-ager with a tin ear calls “Selfness”. Don’t ask. One of its courses is about the “power of laughter”, illustrated by a photo of a young man, you guessed it, laughing. To me the photo looks staged, but how could it be different? The photographer could tell […]

Posted on January 22, 2011 at 13:31 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

The Mutability Of National Character

A Scandinavian writer has recently worried about the EU being infected with joyless Nordic Puritanism and nannying overregulation of citizen pleasures. He consistently takes the Spaniard as the epitome of the happy hedonist. But how were Spaniards seen four hundred years ago? As proud ascetics and stern inquisitors. Indeed, “to make a Spanish face” was […]

Posted on January 23, 2011 at 09:51 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous

Changing The Stereotype Guard

I found a very obscure book at a Lions book sale. It is anonymous, undated, entitled I’m for Hire and purports to be the memoirs of a French prostitute before, during and after the Second World War. I noticed that the author portrayed the black American G.I.s as very much nicer than the whites, not […]

Posted on January 24, 2011 at 10:43 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · 11 Comments
In: MONKEY BUSINESS, Monkey Business, Miscellaneous