Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Switzerland's rules of warfare (and everything else)

Mrs. Blog has a saying about the Swiss: They make the Germans look like Jamaicans. In other words, they are, shall we say, a bit strict about following the rules.

This can apply to little things, like not winding through the entire rope maze to get to the counter when there is no one else in line. (NEIN! VERBOTEN!) Annnnd... it can apply to big things. Like intercepting a highjacked airliner.

No Swiss fighter jets were scrambled Monday when an Ethiopian Airlines co-pilot hijacked his own plane and forced it to land in Geneva, because it happened outside business hours, the Swiss air force said.

Yeah, you read that right. The Swiss Air Force is only available, it turns out, from 8 a.m. to noon, and then from 1:30 to 5 p.m.

"You have reached the Swiss Air Force. For interceptions, press 1...."

They are also closed on the weekends, according to a spokesman. Rules are rules:

"Switzerland cannot intervene because its airbases are closed at night and on the weekend," he said, adding: "It's a question of budget and staffing."

Fortunately, no one was hurt in the hijacking. But if you're planning to start a war in Europe, please take note: Switzerland will simply not respond to your aggression if you try to pull anything outside business hours. Iesen Sie die Zeichen, for crying out loud!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Rollin' (20-sided) bones with Ice-T

In my youth, I dabbled in role-playing games. I'd like to pretend they were edgy or hip somehow, but... nope. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was one of them. Mechwarrior was another. I have no explanation other than that sentient mutant animals and giant war robots are awesome.


When some Friends of the Blog and I would get together to play these, it would often involve tons of soda, pizza and of course a soundtrack. Believe it or not, that soundtrack often involved Ice-T, pre-CSI but post-Body Count.

Which is why the fact that Ice-T is apparently narrating a Dungeons & Dragons audiobook even more hysterical than it already sounds. In Ice's (WARNING! STRONG LANGUAGE!) words:
“They were talking about ‘pegasuses’ and ‘pegasi.’ That’s horses with wings,” he continues. “This motherfucker got a sword that talks to him… Motherfuckers live in places that don’t exist, and it comes with a map. My God.”
Yep, sounds about right. I have a trip to the United States of Awesome coming up this year... maybe I'll download this one for the road. Because I'm 100 percent positive that the inter-dimensional gateway between South Central ("where the Bloods and the Crips play") and... whatever land the D&D book is set in is indeed magical.

*if you got this inside joke, you probably still own some Battletech technical readouts.
Hat tip to Friend of the Blog Sid for pointing out this incredible collision of worlds.