We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Saturday, October 30. 2021
A crypt-keeper pal of vulture capitalist Warren Buffet came up with the plan, and the money to build it -- as long as you don't change his plan. From the photos, the rooms would be illegal as prison cells. A dorm room on the oceanfront with no windows. It's genius, I tells ya.
The Friends of Eddie Coyle is a great movie, based on a book from a guy who knew Boston criminals inside and out. It's also the first place I heard this quote: "This life's hard man, but it's harder if you're stupid!"
A four-year-old with a badge and gun would be the perfect detective. Just keep asking "Why?"
The ZMan is a lively writer and an interesting thinker.
See, that's why I drink plenty of whiskey. That way, no one will want my liver or kidneys.
Many states could use a reshuffle. Rhode Island shouldn't even be a state. Delaware shouldn't be a state. Vermont should be folded into New Hampshire and stapled to Maine. California should be -- sawn off and pushed out to sea.
We went over this yesterday. Zoomers don't like Millennials much. Never mind that. Try to wrap your head around this New Yoik Toims writer who thinks Millennials have an "obsession with work." That must be why they were all able to pay off their student loans early, huh?
The Current War is a terrific movie about this topic, despite being badly written and chaotically directed. Westinghouse was the shizzle.
I'm always worried I'll run out of things to worry about. Thank heavens for social media.
Doesn't matter. Next year is the year for Linux on the desktop. Just like last year was.
Enjoy your weekend, folks!
Friday, October 29. 2021
No, this finding supports my hypothesis that the glass was dirty. You know, with organic molecules. Scientists haven't been very scientific for a long time now.
Well, pit bulls tilt their heads to make them more irresistible to humans, and to make it easier to get the toddler's head in their mouths. Duh.
So, "That meeting should have been an email" was right on the money, and at least fifteen years ago at that.
A website error message that Rickrolls the bot. Like most coder things, it's almost clever, but not quite. It's also childish, kinda pointless, and the name of the object of the exercise (Rick Astley) is spelled wrong.
"It is construction"? Man, noone can spell anymore. They're's mispellings everywere.
Isn't that supposed to be spelled "Time Masheen"? Oh well. It's an interesting idea about checking software reliability. Of course a much more useful tool is to set your computer's clock backwards in time. You can use timestamped software trials forever that way. You didn't hear that from me.
Nope. I've seen Twitter. The spleen has taken over our minds.
A new railway built on bulldozed graveyards. I think I've seen that movie.
I've seen college bookstores. There aren't any books in there, so worrying about the college themed merchandise before founding the college isn't that dumb. Infantile, but not dumb, which is what Musk should have on his business card.
I still prefer "infantile but not dumb."
John Denver acutely unavailable for comment.
Zoomers ain't Boomers. Sorry to break it to dullard Millennials who think Zoomers are going to help them smother Boomers with a pillow, but Zoomers don't like Millennials much, either.
Have a great Friday, everyone!
Thursday, October 28. 2021
People prepping for the end of the world love cryptocurrency. You know, money that only works if everything on the internet does. Good luck with that.
The first shall be last and the last shall be first and "Best" shall be last.
Yeah, but titanium submarines sure helped the Russians beat the Afghan navy pretty quick. Anyway, the US Defense department also seems to be based solely on the "money is no object" procurement plan. Wait until we're totally soviet to find out what that really means. You won't have to wait long.
The original Flight of the Phoenix was a great movie. The remake, not so much.
That's the 21st century in a nutshell.
The headline describes venture capital investment as "giving away money." That's the 21st century in a nutshell.
I'm sure guaranteed basic income and phony empty box refund claims from Amazon will make this wonderful new world possible.
Not really a battery per se. It's a (super)capacitor. Supercapacitors are the only thing that will make electric cars really viable. They'll figure it out eventually, and think of all the money you can make running a superfund recycling site for Tesla batteries when they do.
I once heard someone whose medical coverage didn't cover dental work describe teeth as "luxury bones."
I'm sure towns and cities will use this extra money wisely, by investing in the additional police officers needed to arrest all the citizens who attend school board meetings, for instance.
That's truly the Christmas spirit, isn't it? I suggest Germans follow Groucho Marx's advice in these matters: Don't join any group willing to have you as a member.
Have a great Tuesday, everyone! Best, Roger. Oops
Wednesday, October 27. 2021
It's fun to press the random occupations button and see who's schtupping whom. Of course homemakers aren't on the list, because they don't exist and you're weird for asking why they're not.
As opposed to the Federal Reserve, which has a single director, Beelzebub.
Wow. French people talking sense. Truly it must be the end times. Oh, they fix the problem by charging the customer more. Never mind.
Interns get paid? Who knew? According to the graphic, a social media intern makes about double what a healthcare intern makes. Legal interns make the most, probably because medical malpractice lawsuits caused by low wage healthcare interns pay great.
No thanks. I get all my vital information from brilliantine dullards who read scripts written by social media interns on the TV news.
Pro Tip: Leaving your password on a Post-It note appended to the screen isn't good. It's especially not good if you're using the computer at the library.
Hmm. That sort of arrangement isn't new. It's called a favela overseas, or an Indian Reservation around here. Good luck with that.
Women, minorities, Neil DeGrasse Tyson hardest hit.
So, every molecule of the story was fake, except the part that smears Trump. That was totally legit. Got it.
Better headline: Cities are actually terrible at accommodating humans.
Microsoft is IBM now. Kinda staid, reliable, always makes money. No one gets fired for hiring Microsoft, as they say. IBM is now, oh, I don't know, Fotomat.
That's why being a sugar daddy makes more sense. You can be a sugar daddy at any old age. And your protege won't mind if you die. She might even help.
Tuesday, October 26. 2021
This is what the coming Depression will look like now that we have Instagram.
On to the news!
I guarantee your luggage will stick with the old method.
Rights have concomitant responsibilities. Stop clutching homing beacons and sending randos pictures of your private parts, and then we'll talk.
The only question remaining about the FBI is whether it's always been evil.
They took over his iPhone with an email attachment. He gets his online privacy advice from his granny, I guess.
They'll still time warehouse workers in the bathroom, however.
Hertz just went bankrupt. Now they're spending Wall Street Bets dough. Wisely, as usual.
That's why I only search for porn online. It's safer.
An obscenity wrapped in a travesty inside a perversion.
Conservatives are never going to figure out how the internet works. Hint: it doesn't work for you.
This sounds like looting with extra steps.
Did she write the bulk of any series?
Have a great Tuesday, everyone.
Monday, October 25. 2021
Don't get all down in the mouth because it's Monday. Every day is a gift, remember? Of course Monday is a gift of socks under life's Christmas tree, but it's still a gift, isn't it?
So be smart, dear readers. Don't work for Monday. Make Monday work for you. On to the links:
Funny that the Taiwan news is full of, well, Taiwan news. It's the American papers that are full of imminent Chicom invasions and WWIII . The number one story in this paper is a robbery at a convenience store.
I'd volunteer to help, but I finally touched a boob some years back, and have moved on with my life.
With gemstones? Do aromatherapy misters throw rocks at you, too, or just make you smell like a spinster aunt?
That little tidbit is kinda buried in there. Apparently, you can manage people more efficiently remotely than face-to-face. Burying the lede, there, research dweebs.
I've similarly formally claimed the recliner to protect it from those parties who would exploit it, but the cat doesn't respect my authority, I guess.
I am beset by doubts. I am looking forward to sitting by the side of the road in my bricked car while waiting on hold to talk to someone about my software update in pidgin English.
The Model X Long Range price has gone from $99,990 to $104,990. The Model X Plaid price has stayed the same at $119,990. The Model S long range price has moved from $89,990 to $94,990 for the cheapest version of the car. The Model S Plaid price remains $129,990.
But think of all the money you'll save on spark plugs!
Back when I was doing heavy manual labor we already had a device on our backs that helped us lift more weight than we thought we could comfortably handle, and move it around faster than we ever dreamed possible. We called it the "Boss," and the technology that made it go was called "yelling."
The knucklehead author posits that this calls for more regulations. There's mention in the court documents that Facebook and Google had a plan on how to hide the plan if they were investigated. That's jail time, not regulation time.
I'll bet you the states still relying on COBOL and Madge in accounting had way more than $181 billion in savings because their old-fashioned methods didn't approve every fake claim immediately
The subheading on this article is a true example of begging the question. Who says urban policies have been "well-meaning"? It was criminals decriminalizing criminality. Film at eleven.
Saturday, October 23. 2021
Paintmakers Are Running Out of the Color Blue
Friday, October 22. 2021
I got to thinking yesterday. That's always a mistake. I'm not a clear thinker, being human and all. But I had to look at the news media a bit, to find links for you fine folks, and it got me ruminating. Since there was nothing but bad news, I renamed the process "doominating."
There's nothing but impending doom in the news. Not actual doom in the regular news. The regular news has shifted 180 degrees since they pitched the mean tweeter out on his ear, and muzzled him. Everything's fine now. No matter how not fine the news is, it's fine to them. They still find doom, of course. It's over there behind the invisible 800-pound gorillas.
The purpose of aggregators like Maggie's Farm is to collate an alternative slate of information for people looking for interest or entertainment outside the usual bubble of daily life. It's a kind of magazine, not a newspaper. Magazines have themes. Everywhere I went yesterday, looking for stuff, it was nothing but doom, doom, doom. There are two alternate sets of doom, but it's all doom. My version of Maggie's theme gets harder and harder to cobble together, because I don't really like posting doom drivel and exclaiming harrumph.
It occurs to me that the doom fetish means the average American likes doom. They like being told the world will end, and yesterday to boot. They like movies about apocalypse and TV shows about the dead wandering the earth and munching on the straphangers. The average Joe is getting their jollies by wallowing in their own little doomworld. What is Twitter but an IV drip of doom?
So it's incumbent on me to apologize (again) if the articles I collate aren't depressing enough to make you happy. I'm being as dour as I can, but I can't seem to keep up.
I'm fairly certain the the substance described isn't technically "lumber." Lumber qua lumber is cut up timber. The stuff in the article is "manufactured lumber." Why yes, I'm lots of fun at parties, why do you ask?
Got that? To dweebs at the Economist, and the central banks, if regular people have any money, it's "missing."
Yes, I've noticed that places like Switzerland keep churning out citizens who need a hockey helmet to ride the bus. It would explain a lot about Denver Bronco fans, though.
I love listening to people clutching an iPhone, sitting next to an Alexa on their couch, complaining about privacy. I have weird hobbies, I guess. And shades on my windows.
An elephant's brain weighs 10 pounds. An elephant can't even dial an iPhone, or plug in an Alexa, so you're going to ask the ants different questions, research guy.
Remember, guns don't kill people -- gun control advocates kill people
I believe this problem has previously been solved, as the Fed owns everything already.
Oh, great. I'm no meteorologist, but I've been pluvial once, after an ill-advised trip to Chipotle, so I'm warning you: If you live in Pangea, you better be prepping for a tougher winter than usual.
On today's episode of "Confuse a Cat"...
To paraphrase the usual media headline: Wuhan chimera experiments proven; minorities, women, and Zachriel hardest hit.
Have a great Friday, everyone!
Thursday, October 21. 2021
Well, hello all. Roger here, the king of Sicily. Bird Dog is off getting his annual flea bath, and he's left me to guard the henhouse while he's away.
For instance, I was barely aware that there are hearings or something being held somewhere, where panels of grim-faced blacklisting, witch-hunting martinets are interrogating people with questions like, "Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of the Las Vegas Raiders coaching staff"?
So here's a smattering of random information you might find amusing or informative or silly or whatever. Also, did you know the Raiders moved to Las Vegas? I didn't. The Rams still play in Los Angeles, though, just like when I was a kid. They'll never move.
You know, if I ever run for state senate, the first thing I'm doing is getting my ducts cleaned. Because it's all about ducts, really. Since Katherine Helmond is speaker of the US house of representatives, it's all starting to make sense.
I deal with Europeans from time to time. They don't seem to be cognizant of anything but America, now. We're villains to them, of course, but at least we're the main characters in their lack-of-passion plays, so we have that going for us.
The United States Government opposes the misuse of technology to abuse human rights unless you're an American, they mean. Say, where did you get that $600 in your bank account, prole?
There are those Europeans again (FlixMobility is German), getting all cognizant of the Americas again. I've never found Greyhound to be affordable, exactly, or egad, comfortable, or smart, no matter how you define the word. And if it was "sustainable," they wouldn't have been able to buy the company. But hey, I'm quibbling about sunny language used in a press release, and I can't help noticing that the press agent at FlixMobility is named Goebbels. Well, at least they're not buying railcars.
But not Ivermectin. With or without a prescription.
Remember, correlation does not equal causation. How do we know it's not a Cheeto overdose causing the problem? Huh, science dudes? What was the question again?
Dumb and tone-deaf, as usual. You might as well call it WalterSobchak.com, tagline, "we're not wrong, we're just ***holes. You should have advertised it as the "social media company for everyone, not just lunatic leftists." See, this is why the other side still hires people named Goebbels. They know how to play this game.
I've read that the really hard thing to do in fiction is to create memorable, believable characters. Captain Ahab is one of the most memorable characters every produced by a writer. Everyone knows who Captain Ahab is. No one knows who William Young, critic at the New York Albion was.
Remember, it's only evil colonialism if you set up shop in sunny climes and lord it over the locals. If you import the benighted to do your scut work for a pittance, it's social media! Sanjay lives in the Amistad Arms apartments, barely scrapes by on what they pay him, and he can't quit or he immediately becomes a fugitive. That arrangement sounds familiar, but at least it's not colonialism.
Have a great day, everyone, and keep those ducts clean!
Saturday, February 6. 2021
You're welcome. Again. Some more.
Can't wait for Fauci to tell us to wear two pairs of eyeglasses.
Paul Volcker was either a god or a devil, depending on who you ask. But he was certainly nowhere in-between.
He was Commodus before Joaquin was born, and better at it too. He was the definitive Rudyard Kipling, THE skinflint millionaire, Kaiser Wilhelm, more Rommel than James Mason, and more Barrymore than Barrymore. And still they hang the Sound of Mucus around his neck. Rest easy Sir Charles Litton. We'll remember you.
When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes -Erasmus
Please keep in mind that secession is only cool when California threatens to do it.
Like campus politics, the fights are so vicious because the stakes are so small.
Huh. It turns out you have to know something about ice cream, and something about business, in order to run an ice cream business. Who knew?
Kurt Vonnegut was funny. Robert Caro wrote four books about Lyndon Johnson, which is another kind of joke entirely.
Ahem. A pickup truck has one bench seat, a metal dashboard, three on the tree, and an AM radio. I have no idea what exactly an F 150 is anymore, but it ain't a pickup truck.
Have a nice weekend, y'all. Or if you're Bird Dog, a nice weekend yawl.
Friday, February 5. 2021
Hey, remember normal American life? Me neither.
The Proposal to Prevent the Feminisation of Male Adolescents called on schools to fully reform their offerings on physical education and strengthen their recruitment of teachers. The text advised recruiting retired athletes and people from sporting backgrounds - and "vigorously developing" particular sports like football with a view to "cultivating students' masculinity".
The American version is reminding the male students that they'll never be half the man their mother was.
Flu season in the US runs from October to February. It's February. You're welcome
Well, after giving away money doesn't work, there's nothing left to do but pay you to take it.
If you're unfamiliar with 23andMe, they're like Facebook, but instead of spying on your browsing habits, they rifle through your medical waste if you're dumb enough to send it to them.
What a glorious hoax.
You can get it in any color you want, as long as it's... white?
You know, I'd kinda noticed that my Svalbard mollusks seemed a tad taciturn recently. They've completely lost the urge to fetch sticks and dig in the garden, too.
I remember this one time I was at a boring convention, but they had an open bar with a half-decent wine selection. I guess I sorta took advantage of the open bar thing. After my eighth trip across the auditorium to get another glass, a guy handed me a big trophy, a pretty girl kissed me, and the master of ceremonies announced over the public address system that I'd won the dance contest.
Amazon should just install the driver's mother-in-law in a jump seat and get it over with.
I was walking down the sidewalk in New York once, when I noticed a stockbroker I'd met at a party recently coming towards me. "Hello," he lied.
This dude is in for an SEC enema with a Maxine Waters rubdown finish. He'll be used as a political football. If he's useful in their endless efforts to raise taxes, they'll call him a little guy and let him keep the vig. If he hurt the wrong hedgies, they'll stake him out on an anthill. But his real problem comes later. Some enterprising lawyer with a client who dumped their college money into GameStop and lost it all will sue him, and win. It's pit bull season, and he's wearing milk bone underwear.
Well, that's the links for today. Don't forget to shift your buttocks slightly on the couch at least once a day.
Thursday, February 4. 2021
Ned Beatty explains how the world really works to a doe-eyed crank in Network. A wonderful parable for our times, and still spot on 45 years after it was made. The Wall Street Bets kids will be cozened into Janet Yellen's boardroom shortly, and get Citadel's version of this speech.
I'll explain the GameStop/Reddit/Wall Street Bets frenzy in the simplest terms possible. They've all joined a joint-stock Amway.
His company manages $73 billion in assets for public pension funds. Public pension funds are about to get maybe a third of a trillion or so in bailouts, masquerading as aid to state and local governments. He won't be eating ramen anytime soon.
I guess IBM is being haunted by the ghost of Romettys past. You will be visited by three spirits. Listen to them, and do what they say, or your (block)chains will be heavier than mine.
Got that? "Researchers" say it wasn't slavery. It was "national service." Give them another couple years to research the topic, and they'll be able to explain it was just like playing Minecraft, only with real blocks. Loads of fun for the whole conscripted family!
No sweat. Xi will just get some researchers to rename it "national service."
Pretty soon, we'll perfect bizarro world college admissions where the only way a white male can attend is to make the football team.
I've been accused of being a narcissist. But enough about me. What do you think about me?
Cookies for me, but not for thee, says Google, and every toddler's mother.
Flu season in India runs from October to February. It's February. You're welcome.
People mistakenly believe that designing electric cars is an electric car problem. But electric cars are about as old as gasoline-powered designs. They didn't catch on because the batteries sucked, and gasoline rocked, and was damn near free. The batteries still suck, and only work on a boondoggle basis. Supercapacitors are the future of electric cars and solar storage.
Well, that's the links for this morning. I hope you found them enjoyable or informative or amusing. But remember: It's the individual that's finished. It's the single, solitary human being that's finished. It's every single one of you out there that's finished. Because this is no longer a nation of independent individuals. It's a nation of some two hundred odd million transistorized, deodorized, whiter-than-white, steel-belted bodies, totally unnecessary as human beings and as replaceable as piston rods.
I'm sorry. Did I say that out loud? I meant to say, "Have a nice day!"
Wednesday, February 3. 2021
It's not kind to find amusement in other people's distress. So I won't. I'll just casually mention that it's a tremendous waste of money to send some people to college. So it's not that big of a deal that this money was dumped into a meme stock at a stratospheric high, shortly to make its way to the Pink Sheets. According to modern monetary practice, it's a much better allocation of the same money to send a stockbroker's kids to college. In a Porsche.
On to today's links!
Ah, GameStop remorse will become a thing now. Well, say what you want about the Tulip Mania, but at least you could grow some flowers with what was left of your investment. Experts suggested planting the bulbs point down in the smoking hole of your finances.
They're also thinking of revising the book to be more topical. They're adding a tenth circle to hell. It has a bad internet connection.
There are only two ways to look at this situation. If there is no adequate alternative to Google, then Google is a monopoly, and it can safely be regulated into the ground. If there are adequate alternatives, then Google can safely be regulated into the hereafter. Simple.
I have no idea where the exact inflection point was, but somewhere along the way WalMart became a charming, plucky, mom and pop store compared to Amazon.
He's going to retire to spend more time with his family and his employee's tips.
I don't know what this dialect would sound like, but I know that no matter how far out into space they go, no one is ever going to be able to correctly spell loser, rein, definitely, compliment, it's, or their ever again.
But I tholt it was the Lussians.
No word on modern New Jersey teeth, but after watching Jersey Shore, I have my suspicions.
I can't imagine from what political perspective information will be determined to be "false or biased." It's a deep mystery.
It's going to be really hard to get the working wealthy back into pants.
Have a great Wednesday, everyone.
Tuesday, February 2. 2021
Well, the whole country is shoveling today. The West Coast is shoveling mud, the Midwest is shoveling snow, the Northeast is shoveling slush, and you know what they're shoveling in Washington. Hint: It's not shinola. By the way, our first item is an entire rundown of how that offal gets shoveled. Pay attention.
I hate to break it to you, but deplatforming conservatives from any meaningful place online was the last step, not the first. Act accordingly.
The shirtless fellow with the Flintstones lodge helmet presiding over our impromptu congress has nothing on this woman
It's impolitic to say so, but America's trips to the moon were just stunts. Yeah, yeah, we got Tang and Velcro, and showed up the Soviets, but the moon is just a really boring Disneyland with a very expensive ticket. Well, pretty soon, you can buy tickets, too.
Recent attempts to unionize at Google are superfluous. Apparently everybody's got to be paid the same already. Or else.
Ford and Google Cloud? I don't know why, but I'm reminded that two drunks often lean on each other to keep upright. Have fun with your new Woke dashboard.
Pretty interesting, but if you're prone to telling the truth, the counter of the excavated food joint in Pompeii looks exactly like a Subway sandwich shop.
Two women meet at the mall.
It'll be fun to sneeze on your phone instead of just cursing at it.
Those crazy kids at Wall Street Bets have stumbled onto a real nest of snakes. They'll eventually be broken on the Wall Street wheel, of course, and blame the wrong people for their troubles, and the problem won't get fixed, but think of the demagoguery and additional taxes we can look forward to from all this!
Why does Spotify keep playing Rage Against the Machine songs over and over? I went as far as saying I liked disco and Wayne Newton, but it saw right through that ruse.
And Spotify will play it over and over and over and over...
Monday, February 1. 2021
Bird Dog's at the vet, getting his teeth sharpened or something. Sorry, you're stuck with me again. I'm afraid I'm rather cranky this morning. On top of my general demeanor, I haven't read a newspaper or watched TV in over 20 years. That indicates that this isn't shaping up to be an informative session for you fine people. However, I'll do my best, because back in my day, we gave everything our best effort, even if it was doomed to failure. You know, like elections and public school.
Back in my day, a woman with a beehive hairdo and more eyeshadow than Cleopatra wearing eyeglasses on a chain would make our doctor's appointments, and we were too terrified of her to miss one.
Well, I didn't browse 1990s television in the 1990s, and I'm not going to start now. And back in my day, we used a compliant toddler to change the channel, not a remote.
Why, back in my day, we made the Stasi build their own system of totalitarian surveillance.
Why, back in my day, we had to pay for our own LSD and prostitutes.
Why back in my day, we had to mine our own silver.
Why, back in my day, our parents encouraged us to sniff glue.
Back in my day, you had to shoplift something to get followed around the store like that.
Why, back in my day, we'd greet research like this with a resounding, "Duh." And vocational training consisted of a very dirty plumber yelling at you to go get a Stilson wrench off the truck, and be back in two minutes or you're fired.
Back in my day, you didn't have to hire an expert to lose half your money in the stock market. You could just buy ten shares of anything and vote democrat.
Back in my day, jokes about coups following stolen elections didn't just write themselves. And we called it Burma.
And of course, back in my day, we told everyone to have a nice day. I still do, and mean it.
Friday, June 19. 2020
Maggie's Farm never went anywhere, thank you very much.
We didn't "befriend" them. We domesticated them. You know, to be in charge of us.
Me too, given enough drugs.
The author is obviously too young to remember Jimmy Carter.
I'm trying to picture what Canadian James Bond would look like. Wearing a denim tuxedo while playing baccarat in Cannes would be a dead giveaway.
The answer, as always, is "more."
I've already moved out of range, thank you very much. Mars can look out for itself.
Pay up or a dingo will eat your website.
Zoomers think they've invented a 1950s rec room. Instagram at 11.
A very weird list written by someone who's heard of older workers, but never met one, and who doesn't know that you don't put a period after each item in a bulleted list. I noticed "editor" isn't on your list.
P.T. Musk is a weathervane, not the weather. That's the way the wind is blowing.
They should have borrowed even more. Think about how much they'd be worth if they borrowed a trillion.
I hope 16 billion is enough to cover the fine.
I saw Swarming Suicide Drones open up for Deep Purple at Madison Square Garden back in the 70s. Great show.
Have a great Friday, everyone! Don't forget to take down your Covid decorations before you put up your Kwanzaa tree.
Thursday, June 18. 2020
You imagine no doubt, gentlemen, that I want to amuse you. You are mistaken in that, too. I am by no means such a mirthful person as you imagine, or as you may imagine; however, irritated by all this babble (and I feel that you are irritated) you think fit to ask me who I am--then my answer is, I'm Roger Bosso.
On to today's carefully curated random drivel:
It's almost like the security services didn't want any oversight. I wonder what they were doing. On second thought, no I don't.
Lore has since left a one-star review of the food served at the Philly police lockup on Yelp.
Everybody calm down. The cleaning crew probably just removed one of the Post-It notes from Karen's screen, and she can't remember where she put the two billion without it. She'll remember eventually.
Never mind my data. Can someone help me refold this Rand McNally map? I've been trying since 1987, and I still can't get it back in the glove box.
As is usual with modern news stories, this one doesn't have a list of the offending extensions, or a link to find one. You know, information you could use.
Suicide: The permanent solution to your temporary problems.
Hey, it's not up to me how fast I get fired.
That's funny. Normal people call "direct financial incentives" wages. We call "output-based monitoring" work. We call "esprit de corps" bullsh*t. You'll get used to it, poindexters.
I guess this means that Tesla is finally a real car company, because that sounds just like a Chevy to me.
Cool. Will sharks with fricken laser beams attached to their heads go into production soon?
Well, there's today raft of nonsense. I hope you all enjoy a Thursday filled with cheap happiness or lofty suffering, whichever you prefer.
Wednesday, June 17. 2020
There are now only two kinds of people extant in the US. Let's call them Goofus and Gallant.
No one's going to ring a bell and tell Gallant the rules don't matter any more so let it rip on Goofus. No one is going to ring a bell and tell Goofus to make a frontal assault on Gallant, which would look like a synchronized swimmer turned welterweight punching Mike Tyson at the weigh in. Goofus thinks he has the upper hand right now because no one's stopping him, but he's being humored, nothing more. His minders are using him to get the upper hand. That's a different thing entirely. They'll get as far as they can with this nonsense, but eventually things will strike a new Overton equilibrium. Gallant will put up with kneeling to see his football game, and maybe notice a decided lack of stars and bars on race cars next year. He'll try to follow the new, very weird rules as best he can. Goofus will go back to handing out flyers from card tables in the park while normal people avert their eyes and scurry past.
Let's examine today's news items through the Goofus and Gallant prism:
Goofus would rather die than shop at Walmart. Goofus loves the proletariat. It's people he can't stand, and people shop at Walmart. Gallant's wife shops on Etsy and at Costco because have you seen the way the proletariat dresses?
This is what Goofus' handlers are up to. Zero Hedge is low hanging fruit. Gallant works at the Federalist and is busy doing whatever Google tells them to. How else could they afford season tickets to the kneeling sessions at the Washington Indigenous Downtrodden People football games?
Goofus will continue binge-watching Westworld and wait for a robot girlfriend. Gallant has a Belgian Malinois that cost half that.
Everyone who works at Facebook is a Goofus and will gleefully charge Gallant for Trump ads that never get shown to anyone.
Goofus doesn't care as long as it's not quinine. Gallant doesn't care because he keeps his parents away from nursing homes run by Andrew Cuomo.
Goofus hopes the subs sink anyway. Gallant wants his money back. Submariners would like to take Elaine for a shakedown cruise. Strapped to the hull.
As long as human embryos are destroyed, Goofus is happy. Gallant's ex-wife donated the embryos.
Goofus works at Google and is too busy policing Zero Hedge to police YouTube scams. All of Gallant's money is tied up in ammo bought at Cabela's with cash so he's safe.
Goofus is thirty-three years old and dresses like a toddler. Old age never enters his mind, except to vote for Bernie so he can collect Social Security before he graduates college. Gallant loses so much blood at his construction job that this treatment would be superfluous.
Goofus adores Apple and the EU in equal measure, so his head might explode. Gallant has heard of Europe, but isn't quite sure if it's a real place or not, so he doesn't care one way or the other.
Have a gallant Wednesday, everyone!
Tuesday, June 16. 2020
Well, it's Tuesday. There's no "fresh week" feeling to Tuesday. You don't unwrap a Tuesday. The package is already broken open, and inexpertly taped back up, like most of the tools at Harbor Freight. In geologic terms, it's really not any closer to Friday than Monday was, so you can't even lie to yourself about being one day closer to the weekend with any gusto. Tuesday just is. Let's get on with it.
My car mechanic took LSD once. He said he had an auto body experience.
And just like all flu vaccines, there will be cardboard signs outside of every pharmacy and supermarket offering free flu shots, which no one will get.
It sounds like everyone involved works part time at Hardbodies
Once upon a time and a very good time it was H.G. Wells was coming down along the road and this Wells that was down along the road met a nicens little boy named baby Joyce and told him he was a jerk.
Want to go vegan? Cut out the middleman and become a Seventh-Day Adventist
Both sides have nuclear weapons, but they're bashing each other's heads in with sticks and stones. A parable for our times.
Domain names are like herpes. If you don't want to have it forever, don't get it in the first place.
And according to new research I just finished, Blake Lively could be trying to phone me right now.
That's funny. I would pay five bucks to avoid a Zoom call with Tony Hawk or Brett Favre.
Everyone already refuses to sit in the stands at their kids' Little League games. They're all on the field having fistfights with the umpires and the other parents.
Have a milquetoast, non-denominational, vibe-less, nondescript, average Tuesday everyone. It's the best you can hope for.
Monday, June 15. 2020
Hello all. Roger de Hauteville here, sitting in for Bird Dog. He's gone for his yearly sojourn to get a flea bath and his nails clipped. If he plays his cards right, maybe he'll even get a belly rub from Mrs. Bird Dog.
While it's true I'm "sitting in," there will be, thankfully, no sit-ins on my watch. I'm Sicilian, remember? Haven't you seen the Godfather movies? We don't do sit ins. We don't riot. We don't hold placards and march in a circle. We say nothing about our affairs to strangers, and precious little about them even to our friends. If any action is required, we visit you in the night, and whisper your transgressions in your ear. These remonstrations beat demonstrations every time. Act accordingly.
Woman in China, 45, made $589,800 by buying insurance on flights she predicted would get delayed
ACH payments cost less. Will online shoppers ever switch?
Zoom Acknowledges It Suspended Activists' Accounts At China's Request
This is the word that exists in all human languages, according to research.
Scientists close in on 12-billion-year-old signal from the end of the universe's 'dark age'
The First Woman PhD in Computer Science Was a Nun
Popular Pirate Sites Slowly ‘Disappear’ From Google’s Top Search Results
Kids these days. You're pirates! Look up the word in the dictionary. Banks don't have drive-up windows reserved for bank robbers. Have a little gumption. It's no fun stealing movies if they make it too easy, anyway.
Archaeology: Thracian pit sanctuary found in Bulgaria’s Bourgas
Astronauts say riding Falcon 9 rocket was “totally different” from the space shuttle
Engineers find neat way to turn waste carbon dioxide into useful material
Have a great Monday, everyone!
Saturday, August 24. 2019
Saturday notes from all over:
And yet somehow I can still buy a 50" television for $180. There seems to be a disconnect between the reporting and the reality on this topic. Can't imagine why.
That's silly. The hobo bathing in the men's room sink, however...
And every Washington Post story is secretly a political infomercial. Ho hum.
I hear upcycled pallet lumber coffee tables burn best.
Holy moley. That would have made a hell of movie. In 1966. Now, not so much. Stick to Batman, fellers, it's all you know.
They can't wait to give Facebook millions to carry ads that say social media hates conservatives. Well, they couldn't wait.
The article is 129 words. Reuters labels it a "1 min read." Reuters staff must wear hockey helmets to ride the bus.
Netflix thinks spending lots of cash will result in good entertainment. Disney thinks having good entertainment will result in lots of cash. I know which way I'd bet.
If a subsidy falls in a Chinese forest, does Elon Musk make a sound?
Shopify should just buy a newspaper, and say that it isn't a mistake.
Happy Saturday, everyone!
Friday, August 23. 2019
Internet wags make jokes about the NSA spying on everyone. There's a hint of whistling past the graveyard in the humor. If you sense a dreadful thing nearby, but can't quite see it, your mind runs a bit wild, and you resort to nervous laughter to break the spell. The average computer programmer is a mental patient about online tracking, for instance. They're constantly touting the privacy benefits of Linux, whenever they can get their computers to work enough to type a sentence. Microsoft is sending telemetry! I don't know what telemetry is, but it sounds bad! Then they load forty apps on a homing beacon, AKA a smartphone, and pay for everything with it. They follow it up with a demand to be anonymous on their Twitter account.
Everyone's mistaken, or lying, on the internet, sometimes both. There's only one real fear here. People are whistling past the graveyard of obscurity, not Warhollian panopticontroversy. The nameless dread they hold is the fear that the NSA, and every other two-bit news or data aggregator for that matter, doesn't care if they're alive or dead, never mind what they're doing online at 2 AM. Their life is like a children's game from the fifties: Look at me, look at me, look at me, DON'T LOOK AT ME! One, two, three, GREEN LIGHT!
Don't get me wrong. Someone, or more accurately, many someones are tracking your movements, purchases, and daily interests, no matter how trivial, ephemeral and chaotic they are. It goes into huge hadoop hoppers and gets sifted and sold hither and yon to anyone who will pay. It shouldn't happen, but no one ever asks me what should happen, so place the blame somewhere else. Yell your dissatisfaction with tracking into your Amazon Echo, or your Nest thermostat, or your doorbell, or I don't know, maybe your refrigerator.
And what good is all that info? Not much. I know absolutely everything about myself, for instance, but I have no idea what I'm going to do tomorrow. What chance does Acxiom have at figuring it out?
The photo at the top of this post is real, and the subject of the photo really wrote that on the margin, as nearly as I can tell. It's from a fairly notable book of photographs from a fellow named Jim Goldberg. You can find out all sorts of things about Jim Goldberg on the internet, and I think you can still buy this book of photos and captions, even though it was originally published 35 years ago. Look up Countess Viviana de Blonville. All you'll find is see Jim Goldberg.
Is dying alone, unmourned, and unloved made better if it's posted to Facebook? I am beset by doubts. On to today's news!
People believe hoaxes because hoaxes are more interesting than real life. It's voluntary behavior, really. Just a smidgen of reality mixed in with the bosh is all you need to dupe most folks. I've seen fistfights over the last donut in the break room, so killing a crone for a gingerbread recipe wouldn't strike me as far fetched, either.
If you collect and store sensitive info, you should be required to protect it. Make companies that hoard data take out bonds and insurance to cover all potential liabilities. You need to post bonds to undertake real world construction projects in many cases. Want to build a database instead of a strip mall? What's the difference? Can't wait to see what the number at the bottom of the policy would be for creepy stalkers like Facebook.
Remember when CEOs wore short-sleeve dress shirts under their polyester suits and did boring things like turning a profit? Now they're all android people on booster seats in congressional hearings, new-age gurus, and old short-bus James Bond here.
" Jalopy" is an entirely underused word. I'm going to go out of my way to say "jalopy" today. Go forth, brethren, and spread the word of jalopy! And watch Bullitt.
You're only as old as the women you feel.
Now that's some weapons-grade name dropping. BTW, Fat Man and Little Boy is a good movie, in the parts Paul Newman is in. The parts he isn't in are still technically a movie, I guess. Leslie Groves was the genius in that bunch. Except for Von Neumann, the rest were just really smart plumbers. And Von Neumann isn't in the movie.
It's Australia. That baby should eat a dingo.
I expect a photo of the charred remains of Hansel and Gretel's victim to show up soon.
When my gut bacteria talks, my wife listens and leaves the room.
Attention Apple users: farting through silk is now mandatory to use their products, not just to afford them.
Hansel and Gretel committed a murder over a coffee and crumble. They were pikers compared to Starbucks
Have a great Friday, everyone!
Thursday, August 22. 2019
When I was younger, I discovered stoicism. At first I was put off by their slogan, Amor fati, because hey, no fat chicks. Then I dug a little deeper. I got out my Rosetta stone, and translated from Latin into Greek, and then into Demotic, and back into Latin because my cuneiform is pretty rusty, and finally back into English. That's when I discovered Amor fati only tangentially refers to dating plus-size girls. A closer reading of the texts resulted in a truer meaning: "Sh*t happens." I decided right then and there that this was a worldview I could get behind, if not walk behind.
So I'm a stoic now. I'm in good company. Shakespeare said that there was nothing either good or bad but thinking makes it so. Or maybe it was Rodney Dangerfield. In any case, there are a lot of us stoics out there. For instance, often I'll say something extremely stoic, if that's even possible, and people will remark that stoics are really out there.
To get you in the stoic swing, I've decided to invite the granddaddy of all the stoic scribblers, Marcus Aurelius, to weigh in on today's news items.
"The man who has a house everywhere has a home nowhere"
"Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth."
"The opinion of 10,000 men is of no value if none of them know anything about the subject."
"If you are pained by any external thing, it is not this that disturbs you, but your own judgment about it."
"Never act without purpose and resolve, or without the means to finish the job."
"Begin the morning by saying to thyself, I shall meet with the busy-body, THE ungrateful, arrogant, deceitful, envious, unsocial"
"A wrongdoer is often a man who has left something undone, not always one who has done something."
"Nothing has such power to broaden the mind as the ability to investigate systematically and truly all that comes under thy observation in life."
"He who eats my bread, does my will."
"...if a man comes to his fortieth year, and has any understanding at all, he has virtually seen - thanks to their similarity - all possible happenings, both past and to come."
"The object of life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane."
Have a modestly successful Thursday, everyone, whether you want to or not. That's how stoics do it. I hope you enjoyed Ol' Mark's take on today's news. Remember, don't get down in the mouth about today's events. To quote the two most famous stoic philosophers:
"Everything that happens happens as it should, and if you observe carefully, you will find this to be so." -Marcus Aurelius
"They don't think it be like it is but it do." - Oscar Gamble
Wednesday, August 21. 2019
The internet used to be sort of useful. I don't think it is anymore.
Maggie's Farm is like the old internet. I loved it. People bored with the usual tripe on TV and the radio could find all sorts of new and interesting viewpoints and useful information on the web. There were a lot of blogs, many of them superb. Politics was way in the back. It's weird, because at this point you can watch a livestream of a skanky girl getting her bumhole tattooed on the internet, but I am here to testify that no one reveals much of anything anymore. People are really guarded about saying anything about themselves. Well, pleasant, sane people are. If you look at an Instagram "influencer" account, there are pictures posted every few minutes, but they're all a put-on. The pictures are ads for a life that isn't being lived, i.e., fake. Everything is search engine optimized, not written. Social media is a list of what other people want you to think they think, like virtual coffee table books no one actually reads.
The internet died when it shifted from desktop computers to phones. Well, that put it on life support. Google killed it dead when they said the only search engine that matters wouldn't rank anything but the mobile version of a website. So the internet became a television broadcast with innumerable bad cable stations, projected on the same porthole-sized screen my grandmother had to watch Uncle Miltie. Ads took the place of all the entertainment, and cradle to grave stalking of the users took the place of ads. And since everyone brings their phone in the bathroom with them, you're even being spied on in there now. Even Nielson families didn't put up with that.
Bird Dog is away at doggie daycare, getting his nails clipped, so you're stuck with me. I hope you all appreciate him when he returns, because he's guarded this friendly little oasis of the old web from all comers, and that is quite an undertaking.
On to the news!
That quote is from a very detailed and incisive analysis of the possible upside of the WeWork IPO. Newsgathering outlets suck at this sort of reporting and analysis now, if they were ever good at it. The linked blog is like the old internet. Filled with useful information and savvy analysis.
My friends and I had an underwater exploration kit. We went out on a skiff, and we shined a high intensity light on the ocean floor as we puttered along. I've heard rumors that you can find lobsters that way, and net them. Of course they would be undersized for the catch regulations, so you would never do such a thing, and then boil them on the beach and eat them. Say, what is the statute of limitations on fishery infractions? I'm asking for a friend.
Scroll down the list. Keep scrolling. Software, nurses, physical therapists, software, nurses, physical therapists. Keep scrolling. Keep scrolling. Ah, Oklahoma. Rotary drill operators. Then back at it; software, nurses, physical therapists, software, nurses, physical therapists...
I was surveyed for this report, but my answer was misconstrued. They asked me if I liked working remotely, and I told them I wasn't remotely working. English is hard.
I'd rather watch old football games than new ones anyway. Football players have gotten tiresome.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is leadership. He lost his job, by the way. Bet he finds another one.
Minorly fascinating story about the perils of coincidence. I'm trying to picture what would happen to the crossword author nowadays. What's a ten-letter word for a detention camp, starting with "G" ?
You know, if keep writing articles about persistent Lyme disease, it might eventually be more popular with internet hypochondriacs than Morgellons, vaccine-induced autism, and fibromyalgia put together.
Tesla builds cars in a tent. You bought solar panels from them. Negligence? A pointed finger often identifies two malefactors.
If you stand on a spot on the Equator for one year, you're the one doing something weird. Leave the Earth out of it
With this many people involved, under the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act of 1988, I believe Larry needs to provide a 60 calendar-day notice of any layoffs.
So, prices are too low, because there's a coffee glut. But coffee rust will ruin harvests, which will lower supply, so prices will rise. Well, I've solved that problem. I'm going to use my great big invisible hand to make a pot of joe now.
Enjoy your Wednesday everyone!
Tuesday, August 20. 2019
Sometimes I think that the impression the newspaper is trying to give you is the opposite of reality. There's all this stuff right out front in the news, but the shadow of reality is visible if you squint really hard. The newspaper is what they want you to think. Well, it's Tuesday, and I don't feel like thinking much at all, which is fine. All the bad news that they don't want you to talk about is released on Friday afternoon, late-ish, and all the made up news they wanted to gull you with is released on Monday in the AM, so we're all clear today. We can talk about trivial stuff, like popular music or vice-presidents. The Guardian is cooperating nicely with our Tuesday timetable with their listicle The 30 best films about music, chosen by musicians.
Hmm. The Guardian isn't shy about putting scare quotes on regular nouns used by their political opponents, but they missed an opportunity to put them around the word "musicians." I assume their longer, first-draft title, Crabby Opinions About Pop Culture from the Only "Musicians" Who Were Awake Before 4 PM and Replied To My Last-Minute HARO Bleg, was too long for proper search engine optimization. The author of this list seems to think we've entered "an uncommonly busy period, if not a flat-out golden age" of "movies about musicians, whether biopics, fictions or documentaries." I don't think so, and their list backs up my opinion, not theirs. It's a bad list, and they should feel bad.
The good news: This Is Spinal Tap is on the list. The bad news: So is a documentary about Wham! I guess even a blind squirrel finds a nut from time to time. The rest of the list is awful, and incoherent, in a very particular, modern way. Any pop culture list is bound to linger on recent things, but the list isn't limited to the last decade. If you say "best," you should know a little history. To the target audience, history began when they were in Pampers. Everything before that was a dark time, when everyone's behavior was suitable only for apologies and reparations. One hardy soul takes a stab at history by mentioning the Woodstock movie, but that's likely because they've heard there's a Woodstock movie, not because they've seen it. Sha Na Na played at Woodstock. That's all you need to know about the event.
Right off the top of my head, why wouldn't someone mention:
Bah, I'm arguing with fools. Feel free to add any I've forgotten to comments section. On to the news!
IBM and Yahoo had something in common besides dismal performance. We're not allowed to notice it, however, so we won't.
The National Liberation Front of Corsica? Corsica had terrorists? Corsica has electricity?
I'm suddenly fresh out of snarky remarks.
Seem more like the subscription service model used by Rent-a-Center for crack house couches than SaaS for useless chat apps. Anyway, for some reason, I'm reminded of Johnny Cash's song One Piece at a Time.
All tech IPOs are now Ponzi schemes being palmed off on the stock market before the music stops. This one is especially silly. And stop comparing them to Amazon, article writers. Amazon made a profit right away, but dumped the money back into expansion continually, mostly to avoid taxation. Borrowing money over and over isn't the same thing.
This is a question that's been on my mind for a long time, said no one ever.
From the resurrected Borderline Sociopathic Blog for Boys, natch.
Oh dear, we've disappointed an aesthete from an prisoner-organ-harvesting paradise. A more even-handed appraisal than the headline sounds. And of course even patriotic souls like me have to acknowledge that the United States is the worst country in the world, except for all the others.
Why Is Joe Rogan So Popular?
I can explain it. He's just a Rush Limbaugh who votes straight Democrat on the way home from the Crossfit gym.
It looks like a doorstop at Liberace's house.
Have a happy Tuesday, everyone!
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