Wednesday, June 27, 2007


[reading: R. Stephen Berry, Stuart A. Rice & John Ross, "Physical Chemistry"; recently Christopher Brookmyre, "A Big Boy Did It And Ran Away", Tanya Huff, "Smoke and Ashes", Frankie Manning & Cynthia Millman, "Frankie Manning: Ambassador of Lindy Hop", Christopher Brookmyre, "Boiling a Frog"]

Here's a quick reminder of the fallibility of the net. Given the current situation, I was thinking about the voiceover on that Guinness advert with the surfer:

He waits; that's what he does.
And I tell you what: tick followed tock followed tick followed tock followed tick…
Ahab says, 'I don't care who you are, here's to your dream.'
'Here's to you, Ahab'.
And the fat drummer hit the beat with all his heart.
Here's to waiting.

I noticed that the h2g2 entry for the advert (which is the top search result for 'tick follows tock') claims that "the voiceover comprises of passages from Moby Dick by Herman Melville".

This is simply wrong. What's more, it's trivial to confirm that it's simply wrong: the full text of the book is available* online, and not a single line from the advert is in the book.

(To be fair, there are less prominent pages that are more accurate: "Many incorrectly attribute the text to 'Moby Dick' because of the 'Here's to you, Ahab' line", "Moby Dick-esque with a bit of Dylan Thomas".)

* Given that Melville died in 1891, even the most rabid copyright extensions haven't clawed that far back. Yet.

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