The Head Pointer

Saying what needs to be said...

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Busy little bee

I have been busy with real life of late. This has meant a lack of blogging.

Normal service will resume shortly.


Thursday, May 26, 2005

Who is that Trip Trapping over my bridge

If you are a member of an online community, or a forum if you like, you will no doubt have encountered the lovely being that is referred to as a Troll. This is the kind of person that makes comments designed to elicit an angry retort, which the troll then feeds off. A bit like a lot of bloggers actually; now I think about it.

Apparently The Magic Cafe was invaded by some trolls just recently which prompted a PM message to be sent out from Steve Brooks himself. Just in case you do not access TMC I have taken the liberty to post the full message below. In the meantime I will highlight a portion of it that, quite frankly, had me spitting my morning breakfast all over the screen - and as I was in an internet cafe at the time it was quite embarrassing to say the least.

Most of our members also recognize the idea that you are my guests. As such, the use of common courtesy, manners and old fashioned respect is a given here. The majority of the time the atmosphere of this website is free from idiots...well, most of the time.
Occasionally the losers of the world do crawl out of their tiny holes and try to make everone else be as miserable as they obviously are. Thankfully, when you have a greenhouse full of flowers it's quite easy to spot the weeds.

Ignoring the spelling mistakes throughout, the first line is that we must recognize that we are guests of Steve. Could you imagine if that was real life? Welcome to my home please don't say the following things, if you do I, or one of my minions, will step in and rudely cut you off and finish saying what you wanted to say in the way we want it to be said. Guests? More like prisoners. Yeah, yeah I know we can leave at anytime but it is like addictive drugs, you know they are bad but you just can't stop. The line which really got me wailing was 'The majority of the time the atmosphere of this website is free from idiots...well, most of the time.' Is this Steve finally acknowledging his customer base? Or is he referring to when the staff themselves post?

The final line in this statement says it all. When you have a greenhouse full of flowers it is easy to spot the weeds. What do you do when your greenhouse is full of manure?

Complete PM below:

To: All our Café membership

Subject: Recent posts by Trolls

As many of you are aware, our magical community was bombarded in the last few days by a slew of folks joining and posting hundreds of posts across the board. These posts carried the usual profanity and stupidity that such trolling often does in the Internet world.

However, as a community the majority of you responded with emails and private messages along with reporting the bad posts to our staff, who were then able to deal with this mess in a very timely manner, thus insuring the integrity of our online community. This is what a community should be all about...helping one another.

Sure, not everyone may always agree with each other when it comes to the art we love, but one thing we do agree is the idea that as members, we are a community of entertainers that share the idea of 'Magicians helping magicians'. That is, after all why we are here, isn't it?

Most of our members also recognize the idea that you are my guests. As such, the use of common courtesy, manners and old fashioned respect is a given here. The majority of the time the atmosphere of this website is free from idiots...well, most of the time.
Occasionally the losers of the world do crawl out of their tiny holes and try to make everone else be as miserable as they obviously are. Thankfully, when you have a greenhouse full of flowers it's quite easy to spot the weeds.

That said, I want to personally thank each of you so much for your help, quick action and kind words of encouragement during the last few days as we experienced the onslaught of troll posting by what amounted to nothing more than a group of misguided youngsters. Children who's mommy and daddy neglected to teach them how to behave in public. Geez, can you just imagine what their homelife must be like? Be very afraid says I.

Our world and society has produced a slew of people who refuse to take responsibility for their own actions, scream freedom of speech and feel they have the right to do whatever, even if it means infringing on the rights and freedoms of others. When these people are confronted they usually cry; "foul", and because they do not have a legitimate argument they always resort to name calling. The Internet has only helped to make this trend happen even more and with alarming numbers - especially with our young people. Though I will add that many of this type of mentality are actually adults who should know better. It is unfortunate, but spoiled brats usually grow up to be the problem child of tomorrow.

Having said all that, I felt it only fair that I show my appreciation for all the unselfish folks who contribute to our magical community on a daily basis. Your participation, loyalty and willingness to help one another (especially in a time of crises) is noteworthy and we are forever grateful. For you, our members, are the real backbone of The Magic Café. Both Mya and I feel extremely blessed to be associated with such wonderful people. Again, thank you one and all.


Steve Brooks

Monday, May 23, 2005

Breaker, Breaker 19 for a copy..

In the good old days I used to have a CB radio. It was the internet of it's day - we had the funny names and we used funny talk and spoke crap all day long and into the small hours. I even went on a convoy with like-minded people.

I feel cleansed now that I have got that off my chest. Fortunately CB fell back into the realms of truckers and misfits and many people forgot that there was ever a craze of talking into a little microphone whilst driving around in your car; today I use a mobile phone. One of the most interesting and fun elements was the fact that your conversation was broadcast for all in the car to hear, so you couldn't talk about anything privately. I phoned a friend today, who was in a car with some other people, and the topic of conversation was one that he was not ready for the other passengers to hear. I took great pleasure in his discomfort as I tried to elicit responses from him, I gave up in the end as I was tired from a very long night of talking on my new CB radio.

Of course I haven't really gone out and bought a new one, who would I talk to on it? I am talking about the internet - the CB radio of it's day. I get to talk all day, stay up all night and have a silly name. Stupidity can be, and often is, publically broadcast on forums and if you look across the internet you will find that online communities are meeting up all over the place in cyber-convoys. Isn't it funny how history repeats itself? I wonder what we will be using 20 years from now as we look back in fondness to the absurdity of the internet and the online community, a place to talk to like-minded people without having to meet them face to face.

One of the exciting things for me about the internet is, not only do you have the facility to have a stupid name, you can also have a stupid picture too, and all over the internet people are taking advantage of this. I have selected a few of my favourites from The Magic Cafe to highlight and discuss. This first one is one of my all-time favourites, it causes bile to rise from the very pit of my stomach each time I see it. Ladies and gentleman I present to you the one and only, Candini...

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Everything about this person is just wrong. First of all this is clearly taken in his bedroom, or maybe just outside as there are no posters on the door. Secondly, the guy is wearing shades indoors! The only time this is acceptable is if you are blind, which candini clearly is because whilst groping around for some clothes to wear around the house with his sunglasses, he happened to pick up a red bow tie. I don't even want to know what the gesture is all about. Maybe this is the look that the young 'uns are all going for these days and I will be forced to eat my words. If only my CB buddies could see what I am seeing, the airwaves would be hot.

I shall venture into Green Narnia a few more times to select the hottest, the brightest, and the best and throw them in from time to time.

Do you copy? 10-10 good buddies.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

The Lure of the Cafe

It's always the interesting ones who get banned. Most notably, Mark Lewis, who has been banned many times, re-joined almost as many, struck up a truce with the management only to be banned again by someone who didn't understand. Darmoe is another. John Clarkson another. They're missed. And because they've been banned, others have left, most recently Chris Carter who seems like a nice guy and clearly knows his stuff. Think of how interesting the place could be...

And yet...
Can one ever truly leave the Cafe? I'd be very surprised if those who storm out have never been back since. (My psychic intuition tells me that they may still even be posting...) And what of those who have been banned? Lewis is arguably the king of re-joining, and Darmoe had a very prosperous run under his alias 'Osiris'. What is it about the place that pulls us back? This is not rhetoric. I'm genuinely asking. What is it about Narnia...?

Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Chronicles of Narnia

When I was young I was a huge fan of the Narnia books by C.S. Lewis. I often wondered what it would be like to own a wardrobe that could transport you into a strange and wonderful land filled with terrifyingly weird creatures. What a fantastic and magical adventure; can you imagine walking through it one day and then when you went back the next day things had changed beyond recognition.

When I discovered The Magic Cafe it was like all my dreams had come true. I never thought I would be a fan of heavy handed moderation; yet you are able to read the same thread twice and get a completely different story each day. Magical.

Is Steve Brooks the mysterious Aslan? That would explain the hair.


Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The Master Billet Reader

Busy as I am, I simply had to make time to call this website to your attention.

There's not really much I can say to make it funnier than it already is; it speaks for itself. But I can't quite believe that Silmser will quite happily make such a fool of himself.

He's gone out of his way to design a website to make a point to all the people at the Cafe. Let's take a moment to examine why this might be. It could be that when he tries to make his posts on the Cafe, reasonable people (and even clowns) tear his opinions to pieces - they argue rationally and intelligently about why it's preferable to read a thought rather than a written word. Fed up of calling them names, he has made his own site where no one can show him up. (Well, let's face it... no one NEEDS to show him up. He does that all by himself.) When faced with logic, it seems his knee-jerk reaction is to call his opposition either a kid or an armchair mentalist (even if they're not - it doesn't matter to our Rick, all that matters is that he gets to belittle them. For someone that harps on about experience, you'd think he'd have outgrown name calling by now. How old is he?)

You'll also notice that he wears earrings. Doesn't he know that only girls (and Richard Osterlind) wear earrings? Perhaps someone should tell him. Actually, don't bother. He'll probably just call you an "amature" and tell you that he's been getting peircings for forty-nine years. And who are you to argue with me? And don't you know I've got a wife? And what do you know anyway, kid? And I don't even own any DVDs and I don't even know what one is. And I've got a beard and dress a bit gay. I must be right.

Whatever. His new site still misses the point. The point is not making the audience forget that they wrote anything down. The point is that the written word is NOT what is read. It is incidental to the mind-reading process. Silmser can carry on reading billets, the more sensible among us will continue to read minds.


Sunday, May 15, 2005


It has been a very busy time for me lately. I guess I should have managed my time better and not started a blog. I had no idea that it would actually get readers, so for those that have emailed me asking when the next post will be forthcoming I thought I would leave a quick note.

For those wanting to be amused, take a quick peek at this thread on The Magic Cafe. Here we see Rick Silmser getting his virtual head kicked in by Christopher Carter and Tony Razzano. His, oh so perfect, billet work got rumbled by Bonzo the Clown and then the boots really started flying. I await with baited breath to see what responses are on their way from Ricky, and if anyone else will lay a lick on him too.

I bet Ms Dunninger didn't tell him this would happen.