The Lung Brothers

Hanging out at the extreme end of the long tail ...

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Can't You Just Picture It...?

Donald Whoremann, President of International Whoremann Ballistics Ltd. strides purposefully into the monthly boardroom meeting with a grave and predatory edge to his jaw. The sycophantic managers all lower their eyes under the scrutiny of his steely gaze.

Whoremann, never one to beat around the bush, cuts straight to the chase slapping an open magazines onto the table .

“Gentlemen, before we begin, there is some shocking news that I feel I must share with you. I have just read this Human Rights Watch report that claims that there are over 300,000 children being used as soldiers around the globe. That is THREE-HUNDRED-THOUSAND gentlemen. How is it that nobody ever told me about this before? It’s a damn disgrace! What is it Jenkins?"

“A disgrace Sir”

“And WHY is it a disgrace, Jenkins?”

“Well, having mere children coerced into committing and suffering brutal acts of violence that will probably mark their lives irreversibly. It goes against everything that we consider civilized or sacred.”

(Whoremann stares blankly at Jenkins for several seconds)

“Well Jenkins, I am most grateful for your input. Gunther. Please escort Mr. Jenkins to his desk where he can collect his things and then kindly throw him out of the building.”

(Large bald man with earpiece drags Jenkins whimpering from the boardroom.)

“Now, Cartwright, why is it a disgrace?”

- “Because we are not addressing the market Sir”

“EXACTLY! As far as I’m concerned there are 300,000 unsatisfied customers out there and nobody’s doing anything about it. You only have to look at the disturbing pictures gentlemen. Poor undernourished Senegalese nine-year olds dragging around heavy AK-47s that are almost bigger than they are, it’s so damn inhumane. We have to do something for these poor kids. The hardware just isn’t there for them. They’re being completely marginalized by adult-dominated conflicts and their little voices are not being heard above the flack. What do you reckon Cartwright?”

- “Well Sir, we’re definitely looking at a lower caliber with less recoil and a lighter piece overall. However, we don’t really want to sacrifice range or armor-piercing capability. Tricky. I’m thinking carbine here Sir.”

“Excellent, I like the concept. What about usability? Got any ideas Jenny?

- “Well Sir, I completely agree with Cartwright on the recoil. We’ll also need a smaller handgrip, lighter trigger action and easy load. I have a good friend who designs educational toys, I’ll ask her advice on what a six-year olds’ limitations might be when it comes to munitions handling.”

“Good. Get onto it and come back to me with a full report ASAP. Any thoughts on materials, Chang?”

- “We are talking children and a third-world market Sir. So the emphasis should be on light ‘n cheap. High aluminum content. Hell, we could even use recycled scrap here! I mean if the thing jams or explodes, we’re not exactly going to get a lawsuit through the mail, or even a complaint for than matter. I’ll talk to my man in Beijing.”

“You do that, Chang. And are there any aesthetic considerations here, Serge?”

- “Well you think children and you automatically think bright colors. However, the need for urban and rural camouflage leaves that option unviable. So the second option would be corporate branding. Try telling me that some Columbian rascal wouldn’t like to have a photo of Arnold embossed onto the shoulderstock of his semi-automatic.”

“Nice. Go talk to our merchandising boys and see what action figure fits best. Now down to basics. What are we going to call this little sucker? I’m opening it to the table here folks. All suggestions welcome.”

- “The UrchiN?”

- “The Little’Un?”

- “The Happy Rattler?”

- “The Doozie?”

- “The Juniorizor”

- “The Guerrillito?”

- “The Mini-AK?”

“Whoa, people! Too much information already! I can see there’s no shortage of inspiration present. However, we’re going to do this right. I want Marketing to do a complete study on this. Yes, I mean everything - gaming companies, gun clubs, playground questionnaires in the projects - the works OK? You all have your objectives. We will reconvene here on the third of next month to assess progress. And meanwhile, I want you to remember one very important thing. We’re not just doing this for a greenfield market with the potential for over a quarter of a million units……….

……we’re doing it for the kids!”

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Lock Them in Stocks and Bring on the Rotten Fruit.

At last, the buzzards might finally be coming home to roost for the Dubya house of fun. Even Bill O’ Reilly that right-wing buffoon, (infamous for shouting down liberal guests on his show and telling them to shut up) has gone on the record as saying:

“If Rove gets indicted, that could bring down the administration.”

Which would confirm the old adage: “Kill the brain and the body will die.”

(They should indict Scooter Libby too, even if it's just for having such a stupid sidekick name)

Monday, October 17, 2005

Rogue Thought.

While we were in France Lance Armstrong was doing his bit to make cycling history and yet another daft notion entered my head.
Do sports commentators in the US now call the Tour de France, the Freedom Tour?

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Back to Life, Back to Reality...

Well, well, well, well........What a lazy pair of pulmonary siblings we have been. Letting our poor wee blog marinate for months in it’s own juices of inactivity and spam comments with nary a sign of life.


Sure, got a bunch of ‘em. But they don’t make very good reading so I’ll skip most of it. Metro, boulot, Dodot. Which is French for ‘Living in a rut so deep and wide, you could stampede cattle through it’. There I said it.

It all started around the beginning of August. These continental Europeans do insist on giving us most of the month off despite our pleas to be let back into the office. So CS and I were forced to rent a picturesque little farmhouse in south central France. (Yes there are actually still a few picturesque farmhouses left in France that haven’t been bought up by the British) This is the fourth time we’ve rented a gite (pronounced to rhyme with jeep) and so far, they’ve always come up trumps.

So a couple of weeks visiting diabetically pretty villages, drinking our share of the European wine surplus and scoffing the local food which mostly consist of delicious dishes that were the product of indescribable cruelty to ducks and geese. Amazing the subtle flavours and textures that one can achieve with nothing more than fowl, funnel, plunger and a bit of Gaulic imagination. We returned home several kilos heavier and jelly-limbed with relaxation. Anyway here are a couple of photos of the grotty scenery that we had to put up with.