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THINGS COMICKAL AND RANDOM
random weirdness, with occasional comics, dinosaurs and sodomy
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bald angel
Entry unlocked and public so that maybe there's something that can be found that wasn't planted by the people who produced the thing.

So, I've now scanned my computer with AVG, Adware Cleaner, Hitman Pro, Malwarebytes, and Junkware Removal Tool, and STILL couldn't get the thing out of my system.

Since it was only popping up in Chrome that I can recall -- the reason that I knew immediately that it was malware was that it gave me a Chrome popup saying that I needed to update Flash, and Chrome doesn't work that way -- I've uninstalled Chrome. I'm probably going to have to uninstall Opera 29, which is a Chromium browser these days, and behaves much the same way (with the exception that it doesn't have embedded Flash update, which means more people using Opera probably get deceived by the message redirecting them to newalways.onlineupdate.com).

I also tried Google's own Software Removal Tool. Unfortunately, as far as I can tell, their own tool doesn't work if you don't actually have Chrome on your system. It immediately came back with a "no program found" message. I might need to reinstall Chrome to get it to remove malware from Chrome, which is more irony than I'm prepared to deal with at the moment.)

After that I also tried Kaspersky's Spyware Removal tool, but that didn't find anything either. So hopefully uninstalling Chrome got rid of it.

It's pretty clear that almost all of the information out there on the web about this is planted by the people who produced this thing. It all uses almost exactly the same wording.

Interesting thing to note: almost every single page that talks about how to remove it refers you to Spyhunter by Enigma Software. Every. Page. I would not myself go anywhere near that program. As far as I can tell, it isn't well reviewed -- much less well reviewed than the ones I've already tried. And, well ... once again: Every. Page. Additionally, as far as I can tell from the reviews, what does happen if you install the free version of the software is that it identifies malware on your system, but refuses to remove it unless you purchase the upgraded license. People understandably feel like they're being held hostage.

I did find one page with what seemed to be a relatively vendor neutral approach at Malware Tips. That said, I'm not linking it because the site itself is getting wildly divergent reviews; the AVG review of the site seems to be fairly clear that the site isn't quite what it seems, while the Norton review says it's a pretty good site. And there's nothing wrong with the information it gives on this, although it doesn't quite work.

That said, before I saw the reviews of the site, the advice it gave didn't seem slanted to one specific vendor -- it recommends tools from a variety of vendors -- and reasonably sound. Didn't work, but the advice actually made sense. The links to programs are all to the vendor sites, and it's always possible to simply go to the places it recommends on your own without following its links, which is what I did. The only even slightly uncomfortable thing it recommends -- loosely -- that you install that I was a bit dubious about (and didn't install) was Revo Uninstaller. That program is well reviewed in general, but since I can't see anything to uninstall, I can't see how it would help. (That said, I did remove K-Lite Codec Pack, which I think may have brought the malware into my system, and shredded the installers. If I'm wrong, I can always pick them up again later. I'm also going to install Glary Utilities, to see if it can do anything. There may be some registry schmutz that needs cleaning up.)

Anyway, hopefully it's gone. I'm going to stay Chrome-free for a while to see what happens. Hopefully it doesn't comeback.
11th-Feb-2015 09:25 pm - just wondering....
bald angel
is anyone else having issues with LJ being (a) glacially slow, (b) not allowing you to change the security level of an entry and (c) not allowing you to actually post an entry? I'm having all of the above. The only way I was able to get this to appear -- assuming it does -- was to crosspost from Dreamwidth.


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/56258.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
21st-Jan-2015 08:41 pm - comickal: milestone
hairy hero1
All I have to say is, I hope this works. And I hope they can manage to disentangle the intellectual properties from DC. (Pretty sure that Static Shock can't come back to Milestone any time soon, but maybe the others can. DC didn't really do anything to integrate Hardware or Xombi or any of the others, even before the nu52.)

EXCLUSIVE: Milestone Media rises again. Hudlin, Cowan and Dingle will revive company with eye toward characters of color


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/55876.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
14th-Jan-2015 02:48 pm - comickal: the new PG
hairy hero1
DC’S NEW POWER GIRL DITCHES THE BOOB WINDOW, LOOKS AMAZING (hitfix.com)

I'm ... astonished, really.

Mind, that second paragraph is a touch confusing. Earth-2 IS the original Power Girl's own universe, in the nu52 (and pre-pre-crisis DCU, for that matter) During the time I was reading "World's Finest", she and Helena (Huntress) were working on ways to get back to their own universe, something that Mr. Terrific found by accident. (I stopped reading because it was ... boring, really. A really huge chunk of the titles that DC put out after the last universe reboot were amazingly dull. There's just so much interchangeable ultraviolence with costumed weirdos you can read before it all kind of melds together, you know?)

To be sure, I don't hugely care, although I should. The only DC titles I read now are Batman, Batgirl, Astro City (which isn't any flavor of DC Universe) and Secret Six. And I only kinda sorta sometimes read the first two. Oh, and Gotham Academy, which is weird fun aimed at a somewhat younger audience. (In comic book stores. Yeah, that's going to work real well, that is.) I can only take so much grimdark/grim/grimmer/grimmest/positively-grimy ... especially since, once upon a time not that long ago, DC wasn't ALL that way.

But still. It'll be interesting to see how the audience reacts. "How can SHE be Power Girl? She's too young! The magickal boob window is gone -- along with the magickal boobies! And she's ... not blonde!"

(Purely a side note: Afro puffs. She has Afro puffs. In this day and age. DC, sometimes I really love the way you think.)

Also, the comments thread on that article is a hoot. (I think one of the artists may actually comment about the costume at one point, though I'm not sure.) Mind, I kind of agree with the general sentiment of "Why retread an old name with someone different? Why not come up with a new character name for a new character?" But then, there are a number of reasons why DC wouldn't do that. They wouldn't want the character name to fade away once she was in some other universe, they wouldn't want the name to fall into public domain (granted, they'd need to wait about 75 years from now for that to happen), they'd want to emphasize what connection there is between new and old, etc.

And, of course, the other thing is that if the audience emphatically rejects her early on, they don't have to stick with her all that long. "Convergence" this spring -- what DC is calling their next universe-reshaping event, as they've retired the term "crisis" -- will no doubt offer the opportunity to make all sorts of course corrections. (I plan to serenely ignore it until it's done and they've either restarted everything with new number 1 issues, or -- and I suspect this is more likely for some titles at least -- returned to the pre-Flashpoint numbering. It wouldn't surprise me at all for Batman, Detective, Wonder Woman and maybe Superman to return to the old numbering if they resurrect the old universe in any significant way.

But we shall see, I suppose. Alas.


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/55605.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
bald angel
Rupert Giles, MLS.

All's I have to say is, I'd have paid MUCH more attention to courses like those. (Could have gotten credit for the second one without taking it, even.)

I have a feeling "Digital Curation" may involve physical digits.

And I'm pretty sure that last one is an actual course, albeit not in library schools. I'm pretty sure I've taken that course, even.
29th-Aug-2014 04:15 pm - "do i make you drool?"
howie with headphones
Just a vaguely random moment.

Did you ever have something so firmly in your memory that nobody else you knew had seen or remembered, and then, oddly, you finally come across evidence that it was a real thing?

Patty Duke, many a long year ago, was in a made-for-TV film called "Before and After" in which she uttered the immortal line quoted in the title. Weirdly, that, and how that scene turned out, were all I remembered of the film.

And then, today, I happened to stumble across that very film while searching for something else. Alas, it's not set to allow embedding, but if you click on the link below, it should take you to the very point in the scene where she says those deathless words. If you go through the next minute or so of the film, including the brief tiff with her mother and the concern about her friend who developed anorexia, you'll see the waiter's response.

Before and After, the party scene.

I also remembered the waiter in the scene, in part because he'd been in a few other things around that time, none of which have made it to IMDB, not surprisingly, and I had a certain fondness for his ... eyebrows. (Seriously, those are some mighty mighty eyebrows, those are. He also had a very hairy chest. Seems he's aged rather well ... though, oddly, the eyebrows kind of haven't, if the photos are to be believed.)

You will need to see the beginning of part 7 to see how the party scene turns out. (SPOILER: She totally Does It with the waiter on a baby grand, after he listens to her go on a bit. I'd forgotten how totally toasted she gets.)


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/54859.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
bald angel
Mom Jailed for Letting 9-Year-Old Daughter Play at Park Near Job (theroot.com)

The part I love best about the article is the very last quote:
"I understand the mom may have been in a difficult situation, not having someone to watch the child, but at the same time, you've got to find somebody," Lesa Lamback told ABC 6.


I just want to ask that woman to replay that comment in her head. You don't have anyone, you're making just above minimum wage so you really can't afford any sort of day care, but you've got to find someone. It's not even that it's not true; it's that there's no real way to square that circle. If she'd known about better options she could afford, she'd have used them.

The original article notes that the state's dept of social services has several programs and services. I do wonder how anyone is supposed to know about them or apply for them ... or why anyone would assume that the state had those programs. Quite honestly, it would never have occurred to me that the state had programs for child care. (Which, in fact, we do. The form for applying is a bit confusing for something so brief. If you do the calculation, the estimated copay, for someone making just a shade above Illinois minimum wage, is $110 per month. Which isn't huge, but ... if you're making just above Illinois minimum -- roughly $20,000 per year -- I wonder where that $110 per month is going to come from? [The cost does drop for school age children, part day ... but then, in the summer, school age children that age aren't part-day care, are they?] And, of course, many food service jobs are exempt from actually paying minimum wage, because they assume you're going to get tips, even if you're not in a position where you can get tips.)


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/54778.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
10th-Jul-2014 02:35 am - angelitos negros
bald angel
Let's just have a quick skip along the musical trail, shall we? Let's shall.

I just found out today that something I'd thought of as original (or originalish, anyway) was a cover of a cover of a cover. Followed almost immediately by a later cover in a different language, even. In fact, there seem to be three different languages involved somewhere along the way.

All of the songs appear to be musical versions of a poem by Andres Eloy Blanco, as noted by Spanish Wikipedia. Eloy Blanco does actually have a lyricist credit on most versions of the song.

This was the version that I heard first, and which I love with a love that is true. (NOTE. Audio only. Six minutes long, or in between 2 and 3 times the length of most other versions. I dearly love Roberta Flack, but she can be a tad ... long winded. That said, it's worth noting that Cat Power has a cover inspired by specifically this arrangement that runs anywhere from 4-10 minutes, depending on recording and performance.)



However, this appears to have merely been the then-most recent version in its original (...I think) language. It had been taken for use as a civil rights protest song of an unusual sort. This version came off Roberta Flack's first album, "First Take", recorded 1969.

In 1970, the following performance was recorded, in English ... on German TV. As one does. Or as Eartha Kitt did, given that she was coming to the end of her persona non grata period in the US.



The civil rights protest aspect is ... rather clearer in English, and with Eartha Kitt's particular performance of it.

Both of those follow, almost directly, a 1968 version of the song recorded by a singer named Robertha, about whom I can't find much, except that she seems to be the daughter of a popular Peruvian artist.



Prior to that was a 1952 version of the song in French, "Les Anges Noirs" by Vicky Down. It is very very ... 1952. Very.



And then we loop back to 1948, and a Mexican (I think) musical starring Pedro Infante. In which the song, as staged, appears to be ... a lullaby? Really? How ... cheery. (Also, I have a horrible feeling the little girl is in brownface. Which is an interesting thing for a song that gets appropriated as a civil rights song further north.)



It appears to be the title song for this film, I think.

There are other versions, of course. It appears to have been a very popular song in generation cycles -- strong in late 40s and 50s, effectively disappeared for nearly 20 years, popular again in the late 1960s and early 70s.

And now, to end on an entirely unrelated but cheerier note:



I can't understand two thirds of what she's singing (kind of sad, that), but I'm pretty sure that I might not be expecting the candy she would be supplying.
bald angel
Ahem.

.... SQUEEEEEEEEEE!

I have been waiting for this series for six years, people! Six! Years! Ever since it came from behind to tie for the win in the Top Cow competition for that year! And then it just vanished into the ether. But now! UnVanishing accomplished!



These are all the posts about the upcoming release in Bernardin's Tumblr.

Plus! Plus! In an interview at Comic Book Resources, there's this bit at the end:

Bernardin: And we just reacquired the rights to our first graphic novel, "Monster Attack Network" -- we hope to be able to announce a new home for it, as well as more kaiju-happy stories, in the coming months.


More Monster Attack Network (possibly)! SQUEEEEEEEEEE! (And so on.) You may remember that I loved the first volume with a love that was mostly pure, and I have been very sad that there was no more. But now there may be! WOOT! (I can but hope that Zeke, the black gay monster fighter, also lives through volume 2. And also that maybe he gets some. Mind, I'll settle for a profound lack of noble self sacrifice on his part.) (But seriously. He should get some. Why should the inappropriate sexual interlude be limited to the straight guy? Plus, when last we saw him, the straight guy was in an only-mildly-improbable relationship, so hopefully he's still off the playing field. [The woman with whom he was canoodling seemed, for various reasons, unlikely to share.])

Is it August yet? I need it to be August RIGHT NOW. (...And I need to figure out if I can do a very late order, because I have been paying less than no attention to Previews lately, what with my pull list dropping from over $50 per week -- I know, I know -- to something like $50 per month. Hmm.)


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/54410.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
3rd-Jul-2014 03:54 pm - whoda thunk it?
bald angel
So as long as I'm not going to get meself a Tumblr (at least, I hope I'm not), I might as well make this more tumblresque sure fine why not, right? Maybe that will work to prod some activity here and there.


Interesting when you find out something about someone you'd never known before. For example, while I neither read, deify, nor admire him, I hadn't before heard about Lovecraft's ... interesting views on race.

Racialicious: The ‘N’ Word Through The Ages: The ‘Madness’ Of HP Lovecraft

...Seriously, he gave his cat THAT word for a name! I mean ... WHAT? (Also, I'm guessing he didn't much like cats, either.)


Similarly, I hadn't known that Norman Rockwell painted anything but genteel portraits of a bygone white America. And yet, it turns out that he had.

Norman Rockwell and the Civil Rights Paintings
By Angelo Lopez
February 11, 2008


"Southern Justice" is a genuinely shocking painting, even more so when you consider that it came from Rockwell. Granted that it seems to have come after "The problem we all live with", it still had to be one hell of a shock to his normal audience. (For some reason, I'm seeing a variety of dates for "Southern Justice", either 1963, 1964, or 1965 so far. 1965 seems to be authoritative.)




No trenchant commentary or observations. Just seems to be the season for hearing things about artists in various realms that you hadn't known before.


-- Originally posted at http://iainpj.dreamwidth.org/54043.html, where there are comment count unavailable comments.
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