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Lyle Zapato

Cake Decorating Of Yesteryear

Lyle Zapato | 2005-01-20.1800 LMT | Random Found Thing | Food | Retro


Figure 1: The seductive appeal of scalloping.

From Magic for Your Table... Cake & Food Decorating By Wilton, published in 1971. It's sort of a combination cake decorating HOWTO and product catalog from Wilton Enterprises, Inc. (now Wilton Industries). Could there be retro-wackiness inside?

Read more...

Lyle Zapato

ZPi Spider Mini: Your Personal Spider Assistant

Lyle Zapato | 2005-01-18.9800 LMT | Crafts | Nature

Introducing ZPi Spider Mini™: Your Personal Spider Assistant!

Spider Mini™ is an innovative combination of software and hardware working in synergy to provide enterprise level arachno-assistant solutions to help expedite all your mission-critical applications. Spider Mini™ is a scalable open-source standard facilitated by just-in-time compilation that leverages fuzzy piping technology and beady-eye stickiness to bring compelling world-class interactive experiences to all users. Spider Mini™ is a ubiquitous, always-on simulation that recontextualizes best-of-breed arthropodic paradigms to emulate an intuitive yet revolutionary real-time, real-world interpersonal dynamic that disintermediates competing e-solutions such as Clippy™ or Bonzai Buddy™. Spider Mini™ will seamlessly integrate into your work environment and is fully cross-platform compatible. Spider Mini™ implements an on-demand, user-centric strategy to transform e-business into yippee!-business and empower increased productivity. And of course, Spider Mini™ features a bleeding-edge front-end and a web-ready back-end. You should expect nothing less from ZPi.


Spider Mini™ supervises data entry tasks and Post-It™ management.

Spider Mini™ loves you, even if no one else does. Especially if no one else does! Show your initiative and make a Spider Mini™ today.

Lyle Zapato

Zaxon and Electrostatic Discharge Dangers

Lyle Zapato | 2005-01-10.9990 LMT | Miscellaneous | Paraterrestrials | Technology

Two sites not at all connected for your consideration:

"My Name Is Phil"
Can you keep a secret? Phil has lots of research on paraterrestrial transmissions, a map of portals, breaking news reports, a solution to the global energy crisis involving tree sap, and anecdotes and wisdom from his medieval alien friend Zaxon. He also has his own songs and music videos for download. Do check him out when you tire of monorails and Sasquatch.
The ESD Journal
Do you gas up your car wearing nothing but a fuzzy sweater and socks, all the while talking on your cellphone? Then it's vitally important you read the ESD Journal before you die in an explosion. Includes lots of links to ESD research and anti-static devices.

The ESD Journal also links to information on lipoatrophia semicircularis (LS), a medical disorder that could become the carpal tunnel syndrome of the 21st century. LS mainly afflicts computer-using office workers and consists of a semicircular zone of atrophy of the subcutaneous fatty tissue located mostly on the upper thighs. They hypothesize that it is caused by electrostatic discharge from contact with the undersides of metal desks. Fortunately LS seems to be reversible and 95% of retired employees have no more lesions after a year. While their hypothesis is compelling, I am somewhat troubled by the fact that LS is mainly reported in so-called "Belgians". Perhaps the condition is really the result of the cramped quarters inside Belgian Citizen Pods.

Lyle Zapato

More Monorail Mayhem

Lyle Zapato | 2005-01-06.7200 LMT | Monorail Danger

...This time at the San Diego Wild Animal Park, where the monorail broke down, trapping 400 riders in the bitter cold for up to four hours. According to one unfortunate rider: "I got hypothermia and my kids have bronchitis." She should count herself and her kids lucky that the monorail didn't derail and fall into the Lion Camp. There are no windows on that thing to keep the carnivores out, you know.

Reportedly zoo officials have wised up and decided that the monorail, which was sold to them by some fly-by-night monorail hucksters who aren't around anymore to supply replacement parts, is a relic. It will be replaced in total with more conventionally wheeled drive-by-wire vehicles.

(This would never happen in an enclosed, air-conditioned, and entirely lion-proof pneumatic tube pod. Granted it would be more difficult to see the frolicking antelopes and zebras in there, but what price public safety?)

Lyle Zapato

Seasonal Aluminum Deflection Tree

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-25.1300 LMT | Aluminum | Mind Control | NWO | General Paranoia
Aluminum Tree

Paranoids are finding it increasingly difficult to obtain vintage Seasonal Aluminum Deflection Trees (SADTs), with prices currently starting at over US$400 and supplies dwindling.

Originally manufactured in the late 1950s as a way to arborescentally deflect multiple signals from stop-motion TV specials at the back of viewers' heads, thereby creating a holographic mind-control effect, a serious flaw in their design was discovered by paranoid researchers that allowed them to be used as psychotronic dampeners by simply adjusting the branch angles based on the Fibonacci numbers. Realizing their mistake, the NWO used negative propaganda in Charley Brown cartoons to dissuade the mass consumption of aluminum trees, but paranoids in the know were still able to obtain used ones cheaply through the black market.

In an apparent attempt to stop this, the NWO is using it's control over the affluent hipster and kitschophile communities (through such fronts as Hammacher Schlemmer and Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.) to artificially increase the demand, making vintage devices difficult to come by. Furthermore, I suspect that they have figured a way around the Fibonacci bug and are manufacturing new, unafflicted versions, which, because of their crowd madness management, will sell like hot cakes next year when the prices are lowered. Paranoids should avoid these newer models.

What's so great about SADTs? Professor Hans Delbruck, in the ZPi guestbook, explains:

Aluminum trees have a para-branch effect which blocks the increased commercial psychotronic radiation at this time of year. Aluminum trees conserve habitat for the tree octopus and the Sasquatch. The Austin Powers-like effect of the revolving colored light box that one places under the tree has a soothing effect on the advanced paranoid hominoid, which is particularly valuable when used with full AFDBification and wrapping of gifts in aluminium foil.

Some links:

UPDATE 2008-12-17: Gather 'round your Seasonal Aluminum Deflection Tree and sing that classic paranoid tune, O Alumbaum!.

Lyle Zapato

"Aluminum Thieves" Targeting Cascadia

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-20.5400 LMT | Aluminum | Cascadia | NWO | General Paranoia

The Columbian is reporting that South Central Cascadia is being hit by a wave of aluminum theft targeting guardrails, manhole covers, and baseball bleachers. While the explanation being given by NWO-aligned government officials is that the thieves are selling the metal for scrap to buy drugs, the obvious real reason is that the NWO is trying to limit the amount of aluminum barriers in the environment that could be blocking their psychotronic signals along roads and at ballparks. Government officials expressed kabuki-esque surprise that the thieves could manage to steal the large, bolted pieces of aluminum without anyone noticing. Conveniently, the "stolen" aluminum manhole covers are being replaced with psychotronically translucent steel ones, thereby allowing NWO agents lurking in our storm drains and sewers to freely target pedestrians.

The increase in "thefts" and attendant excuses by government officials point to a ramped-up mind control campaign by the combined forces of the DOT (possibly related to monorails) and the Minor League Baseball Cartel. Paranoids should be warned to wear extra aluminum protection while driving and pedestring and to not attend baseball games without first lining the seat of their pants with foil to thwart subbleacher psychotrons.

UPDATE: Newer report on aluminum "theft".

Lyle Zapato

Meet Ms. Red Ant

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-18.0520 LMT | Art | Nature
Red Ant icon

Another SVG icon, this time of a red ant.

Lyle Zapato

Experimental SVG Icons

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-16.8500 LMT | Art | Nature

African penguin icon Emperor penguin icon Treehopper icon

I've created two more vector icons -- an African and an Emperor penguin -- and have added SVG and PNG versions of all three on the Zapaticons page. These are still experimental and are subject to change. If your OS or desktop environment supports SVG icons, let me know if they work or if there's any issues with them. I'll add more once I'm satisfied with the format.

Lyle Zapato

Treehopper Vector Icon Preview

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-15.8220 LMT | Art | Nature
Treehopper icon

Thinking about my icons in the previous post reminded me of an idea I had a while back to make vectorized versions of some of them for use with newer operating systems and desktop environments that support that sort of thing. So I whipped up a take on my thorn-mimic treehopper icon. It's more cartoony and simplified, yet bold like the mighty treehopper himself! I'm undecided as to whether I should add vein lines in the wings -- if I do other insects, some, like dragonflies, will look better with them so I might add them for consistency's sake.

I'll put a vector version of it, and any other's I do, on the Zapaticons page when I figure out the best way to save it for use by OSs/DEs. Currently it's in SVG, but Inkscape adds extra info to the file that's unnecessary. (Anyone with any suggestions on this, feel free to email me.)

In the mean time, you can enjoy this rastorized version, which coincidentally makes the front page look more festive... Feliz Navibug!

Lyle Zapato

Penguiniconic Mystery

Lyle Zapato | 2004-12-15.5900 LMT | Art | Crass Commercialism | Nature
Penguin T-Shirt

For some odd reason, lately people (11 to be precise) have been buying the Penguin t-shirt from my Zapaticons store. I say "odd reason" because it's the only thing from that store that anyone has bought in the almost one year that it's been there and people only started buying it in October. I haven't done any advertising of it other than the banner ad on the Zapaticons page that has been there since I added the store. I thought maybe it was because of the shirt's placing on Cafepress's search, but it only shows up on the third page for "penguin". I also thought it might have something to do with the increase in Cascadia sticker sales around the same time, but the only place where the two stores are mentioned together is on the front page sidebar, so that doesn't make sense.

What gives? Has there been a sudden outbreak of penguinophilia? Some sort of joint Penguin-Belgium psy-op campaign aimed at influencing my website?

Anyway, the Zapaticons store is a hodgepodge mess of random icons on random items; however, if penguins are so very, very popular (does no one appreciate the homopterrific cuteness of the thorn mimic treehopper?) I could increase the penguin-to-nonpenguin ratio there (I already added a second penguin shirt and two penguin ornaments), or add a separate penguinicon store with a full complement of penguiny products (unless that's what THEY want!) If anyone has any requests or suggestions regarding this, email me and I'll take it under advisement.