Sunday, October 28, 2007

Abbey of Thelema, more Templars

[04/19 - The Abbey Today was last updated in 2006, but is still an excellent resource.]

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Chinglish, Templars on NPR

  • I think that it was Foucault's Pendulum that had a lovely quote to the effect that every good conspiracy theory eventually gets back to the Templars. Anyway, I just heard a bit on NPR that will doubtless prove to be conspiracy fodder:
    In 1307, the Knights Templar, an order of military monks who had achieved great wealth and power, were ordered by the King of France to be arrested for heresy. They were tried and found guilty. Some members were burned at the stake, and the order was disbanded. The Vatican will soon release newly discovered documents pertaining to the trial of the Knights Templar. Professor Helen Nicholson speaks with Liane Hansen about the group and whether they were really guilty of heresy.
    Anyway, listen to the audio.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Barley domestication

  • Dienekes' Anthropology blog notes what looks to be a rather interesting study by Purugganam Saisho on the domestication of barley. Of especial note is the hypothesis that there were
    ...two domestication events that led to the origin of barley - one in the Fertile Crescent and another further east, possibly at the eastern edge of the Iranian Plateau.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Coffee, Adamski and prohibition

  • More good reasons to drink coffee: apart from weight loss, it is mentally stimulating, reduces risk of Parkinson's, cardiovascular disease, gallstones. Good stuff.
  • Adam Gorightly has a rather nice and thoughtful kooky piece on the various strands of the New Gnosis. It includes the following neat piece of George Adamski trivia:
    In the 1930's — prior to his "Space Brother" encounters — Adamski operated a monastery dubbed "The Royal-Order of Tibet," which afforded him a permit to make sacrificial wine during the Prohibition. After the Prohibition ended, Adamski's monastery suddenly closed its doors, and he afterwards opened a burger stand near the Mount Polomar Observatory. While there, Adamski claimed to have helped astronomers photograph several UFO's — a claim that afterwards was never verified by anyone at the observatory.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Thoughts on job interviews

  • Recently I have had to interview a number of candidates for technical support positions at my work, and it has been rather an eye-opener. I'm no stranger to interviewing people, but never have I seen such a consistent range of inappropriate behaviours.
    Let's start with the most minor: dress. Now, I do not believe that dress code is at all appropriate for the average tech support position, but I like to see someone make an effort for the job interview itself. Preferably a jacket and tie. Failing that, at least a shirt. But, no. Quite a few of the people I've been seeing (for what is actually a fairly well paid position) just show up in jeans and t-shirt. Guy a couple of weeks ago came in the varient of an old sweatshirt, with t-shirt on top, a combo which irritates me even outside work. OK for beer and pizza, maybe, but not a job interview.
    Then there is the demeanour of the person. It is pleasant for everyone to keep it relatively informal and friendly. But it is a job interview after all, and I don't think much of people that laugh loudly, crack jokes, or lean back in their chairs and put their hands behind their heads as if to nod off.
    And show up on time for god sake.
    And the rambling on and on. There is virtue in keeping answers short and to the point.
    And when speaking of past jobs, there is really no point in letting me know that their previous manager had it in for them (for some unknown reason, or because they were a given religion, or whatever.) Maybe that is true, maybe it isn't, but bringing it up in an interview tends to be rather unimpressive.
    There is another one that I have seen, which isn't irritating, but rather a bit sad. I have a set lot of rather easy technical questions that I put to people in the interview. Those that don't have the necessary skillset, and can't answer most of my questions correctly, inevitably quickly assure me that they are both a very quick learner, and would be an asset to the company. Sorry man, maybe that it true, but I need someone with a certain base skillset.

Stuff I Collect - Militaria

Stuff I Collect - Militaria WW2 WWII First 1st Allied Airborne pin OPA ration token (1 blue) WW1 U.S. Shipyard Voluntee...