Gran Turismo 5

First impressions are not always the most prominent impression that remains but they are still something. They are first.
Gran turismo 5 is a playstation 3 game.

GT5 is the 5th part of a long running series of games made by a Japanese company. To me its that quirkiness that stands out with a Japanese flavour that blends itself into the game. I mean, kicking off a car racing game with a modern piano number and a detailed series of shots on making steel — it made me chuckle.

You can see it <a href=””>here</a>, but skip to the 22 second mark to avoid the rubbish promos.

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One of the best features of the game is its visual flashiness. It’s setting a new standard for how much closer inanimate objects, like cars, can look when comparing computer images to the real thing. Above is the groovy little Fiat Lounge.

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I like driving games and this one is quite realistic in the way that it works. From what I’ve read games recently have been criticised for being too easy. The Gran Turismo series tends to run its own race, and so hasn’t dumbed itself down. It’s pretty hard. Directly above and below are shots of the Lambo Murch SuperVeloce, which is very good fun to drive. I call it the beebox and I’m sure that if I could talk to the zombied Sylvia Plath and tell her about it, she’d really dig it.

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The developers have gone to great lengths to include detail on a whole load of the cars (but not all of them, because there’s over 1000 in the game). These pics are taken from a feature in the game where you can stick a car in a specific location like Kyoto or a marketplace in Bern and ‘take photos’ of it. That, plus the driving, appeal to me and all the countless other slackers who’ll never be in a position to own a Lambo — or even a Fiat in my case.

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1991 was 20 years ago

I mentioned before I was really enjoying Top Gear. I’d say they jumped the shark around 2007-08. I haven’t watched the most recent season, but I just finished the one before that and unfortunately it was low on content and leaned heavily on over-mortgaged personalities. And so it was amusing to take a look at how things were back in 1989. Was TV really that … um, <em>bad</em>? It doesn’t feel that long ago.

Here’s Clarkeson dressed like Tears for Fears.

<a href=”” title=”jeremyclarkeson-1989 by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”500″ height=”379″ alt=”jeremyclarkeson-1989″ /></a>

“What on Earth is this? It’s a Marina.”


Man, I’m a little bummed to hear that yahoo are shutting down – the bookmarking site. There’s been a billion little useless web thing-ama-jigs invented over the last ten years and I’ve steered clear of most of them, partly because they weren’t useful but also because of this possibility of death. Delicious was useful because I often saw pages which didn’t really merit being commented upon here, but are worth noting nonetheless, and it was fairly easy to search back through. I am able to export a copy of the bookmarks, and I may stick it as a static page here, but it’s annoying that a company the size of Yahoo (who don’t deserve the exclamation point they claim) can’t make the commitment to keep things like delicious going.

Here is an example of the kind of bookmark that interesting and would have previously been quietly added to the top-right sidebar for the reader to browse if they so chose: <a href=””>dragtimes</a> – filthy rich Russians drive expensive cars fast on public highways. Now I will have to put them back into the main body text, as I used to 6 or 7 years ago, and then needlessly blither on about what the link is.

I’m always a bit fascinated by the new wild-west places, like Russia at present, or Abu Dhabi etc. – where money is being thrown around in huge chunks. Not so much because I want the money but it’s interesting to see how it shapes the society. I would be tempted to think about working in Russia if it wasn’t so fucking cold.

against all odds

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I quite like this, even if it is missing a ?

Sometimes I worry about things like that, like what if in the future there is no ‘too’ and everyone is using ‘to’ for ‘to’ and ‘too’ too. Meaning will be that bit harder to grasp. I blame American public education.

a short-necked clam

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I’ll bet that when decided to name his content-managing software after hisself that he didn’t know it would get attached to a few of the things that are so well known today, namely wikipedia and wikileaks. I really don’t like to stoop to talking about politics and current affairs on here because it’s a mug’s game. It comes and goes and it’s the same rubbish decade after decade. The Suez Canal Crisis of 1956 = “Oh noes, we is gonna run oot of oils!” And really, who looks back upon these things fondly? No one who’s sane that’s for sure.

But damn wikileaks is on the frontpage everyday lately. The articles I did find interesting were those relating to china n’ n.korea and one relating to where the leaks were coming from. Everybody seems to want the head of the shady-looking character pictured above, but american govt. take a look at yourself. There’s obviously a lot of people in your organisation who are unhappy with the way things are going because that’s where the info is coming from. The stuff that some of the Chinese officials were saying about N.korea was frankly the best news I’d heard in ages. In fact just last saturday I was droning on endlessly to my girlfriend about all the little things that were wrong with korea, and the world in general, (as I often do) and actually said that it was of no benefit now for China to keep backing N.korea. They could easily push N.korea into opening up, as China itself has done, especially once kim il-jong has kicked off. In these days of push-button destruction what does this little piece of turf mean to either China or USA? – not much. And I’m sure China knows that the S.korean cappo way of utilising labour and extracting minerals would be much more efficient than what ever the dictatorship is doing up their at present.

So anyway, while I occasionally wondered what a unified korea would be like, it always seemed like an almost non-possibility but in the last few days I’ve been thinking a bit more about it.

And then there was another leak I read the other day about Sarkozy which was not hard-news related but instead rabbit related – and for some reason this morning just as I was waking, my right brain was mulling over the image of sarkozy chasing a dog which was chasing a rabbit around his office while his son laughed gleefully.

<a href=”” title=”mickey by esquimauxpie, on Flickr”><img src=”” width=”500″ height=”373″ alt=”mickey” /></a>

I think if might be because I’ve been slacking off with my studies-writing but my minds been wondering a bit lately and I’ve been remember dreams more regularly. Also, because of light seeping in through the thin curtains I usually switch ends of the bed about an hour and a half before getting up, so that last bit is kind of different. The other morning 10cc’s ‘I’m not in love’ was playing through my head as clear as a bell. I’m sure I hadn’t heard it in years either.

*   *   *

I’ve been watching the first season of Starsky and Hutch. It was produced by aaron spelling, of later 9012 etc (in)fame. I didn’t know that guy was so old. It started off not really knowing what was going on. I think the third ep. was written by Michael Mann – who did Miami Vice – and you could see that one was a bit grittier than the rest. Paul Michael Glaser (Starsky) has a hella-strong Boston accent. So far, I have to say it’s okay, but not great. I watched an episode of ‘The Fugitive’ and eventhough it can’t be compared well – different decade, different style, it was easy to see that the writing was much better quality.

nice beaver

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So goodbye to Leslie Nielsen. It re-occurred to me a few years back how funny he was and so watched through the Naked Gun movies and even found a few of the Police Squad shows on the internet. But I think the key was the teaming up with the Zuckers’ (and Abraham’s) writing. For something different the last two nights I watched a couple of lesser known things from his filmog: _Spyhard_ and _The Poseidon Adventure_. The best thing about Spyhard was the theme song by Weird Al. On wikipedia it says it was shitcanned by critics and I can see why. Nielsen only had a small part in _Poseidon_. That was a pretty lame movie too, but kind of interesting because I didn’t realise that Poseidon (2006) was a remake. That was a snorefest too but the casting connections are interesting. Is Kurt Russell the hollywood/spiritual of Gene Hackman? Yes. And Red Buttons –> Richard Dreyfuss?  Maybe not quite, but the evolution of that character’s backstory is interesting. Red Buttons was a dapper little man who owned a haberdashery but never had the time to find the right woman. Richard Dreyfuss was a gay man with AIDS. I guess neither AIDS or being gay in movies were invented in 1972 so they had to think of something else.

Other lesser known things that Nielsen did include appearing as a guest star on The Streets of San Francisco *twice* and narrating some sort of nature doco which was later sampled by Boards of Canada in their track Dandelion from the Geogaddi album.

ps. Anyone want to go halfies on an aircraft carrier with me? I have two thousand dollars and I’ll tell them I promise to pay the rest later. If so, put a bid in <a href=”;pgid=MieqQ4wkQg8000ArvQ_8K1sp0000vKBL0R31?ProductUUID=38jAqBIQwVwAAAEsaApaBWLN&CatalogCategoryID=VaLAqBELPagAAAED8GeasfoP&JumpTo=OfferList”>here</a>.