Fix typo in cloud -> in a cloud.
[dragonfly.git] / games / fortune / datfiles / fortunes2
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1This fortune brought to you by:
2$FreeBSD: src/games/fortune/datfiles/fortunes2,v 1.17.2.8 2002/10/19 05:10:15 fanf Exp $
fcd06074 3$DragonFly: src/games/fortune/datfiles/fortunes2,v 1.3 2003/11/04 14:17:26 eirikn Exp $
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4
5%
6=======================================================================
7|| ||
8|| The FORTUNE-COOKIE program is soon to be a Major Motion Picture! ||
9|| Watch for it at a theater near you next summer! ||
10|| ||
11=======================================================================
12 Francis Ford Coppola presents a George Lucas Production:
13 "Fortune Cookie"
14 Directed by Steven Spielberg.
15 Starring Harrison Ford Bette Midler Marlon Brando
16 Christopher Reeves Marilyn Chambers
17 and Bob Hope as "The Waiter".
18 Costumes Designed by Pierre Cardin.
19 Special Effects by Timothy Leary.
20 Read the Warner paperback!
21 Invoke the Unix program!
22 Soundtrack on XTC Records.
23 In 70mm and Dolby Stereo at selected theaters and terminal
24 centers.
25%
26 PLAYGIRL, Inc.
27 Philadelphia, Pa. 19369
28Dear Sir:
29 Your name has been submitted to us with your photo. I regret to
30inform you that we will be unable to use your body in our centerfold. On
31a scale of one to ten, your body was rated a minus two by a panel of women
32ranging in age from 60 to 75 years. We tried to assemble a panel in the
33age bracket of 25 to 35 years, but we could not get them to stop laughing
34long enough to reach a decision. Should the taste of the American woman
35ever change so drastically that bodies such as yours would be appropriate
36in our magazine, you will be notified by this office. Please, don't call
37us.
38 Sympathetically,
39 Amanda L. Smith
40
41p.s. We also want to commend you for your unusual pose. Were you
42 wounded in the war, or do you ride your bike a lot?
43%
44 _-^--^=-_
45 _.-^^ -~_
46 _-- --_
47 < >)
48 | |
49 \._ _./
50 ```--. . , ; .--'''
51 | | |
52 .-=|| | |=-.
53 `-=#$%&%$#=-'
54 | ; :|
55 _____.,-#%&$@%#&#~,._____
56%
57 FROM THE DESK OF
58 Dorothy Gale
59
60 Auntie Em:
61 Hate you.
62 Hate Kansas.
63 Taking the dog.
64 Dorothy
65%
66 FROM THE DESK OF
67 Rapunzel
68
69Dear Prince:
70
71 Use ladder tonight --
72 you're splitting my ends.
73%
74 SEMINAR ANNOUNCEMENT
75
76Title: Are Frogs Turing Compatible?
77Speaker: Don "The Lion" Knuth
78
79 ABSTRACT
80 Several researchers at the University of Louisiana have been studying
81the computing power of various amphibians, frogs in particular. The problem
82of frog computability has become a critical issue that ranges across all areas
83of computer science. It has been shown that anything computable by an amphi-
84bian community in a fixed-size pond is computable by a frog in the same-size
85pond -- that is to say, frogs are Pond-space complete. We will show that
86there is a log-space, polywog-time reduction from any Turing machine program
87to a frog. We will suggest these represent a proper subset of frog-computable
88functions.
89 This is not just a let's-see-how-far-those-frogs-can-jump seminar.
90This is only for hardcore amphibian-computation people and their colleagues.
91 Refreshments will be served. Music will be played.
92%
93 UNIX Trix
94
95For those of you in the reseller business, here is a helpful tip that will
96save your support staff a few hours of precious time. Before you send your
97next machine out to an untrained client, change the permissions on /etc/passwd
98to 666 and make sure there is a copy somewhere on the disk. Now when they
99forget the root password, you can easily login as an ordinary user and correct
100the damage. Having a bootable tape (for larger machines) is not a bad idea
101either. If you need some help, give us a call.
102
103 -- CommUNIXque 1:1, ASCAR Business Systems
104%
105 ___====-_ _-====___
106 _--~~~#####// ' ` \\#####~~~--_
107 -~##########// ( ) \\##########~-_
108 -############// |\^^/| \\############-
109 _~############// (O||O) \\############~_
110 ~#############(( \\// ))#############~
111 -###############\\ (oo) //###############-
112 -#################\\ / `' \ //#################-
113 -###################\\/ () \//###################-
114 _#/|##########/\######( (()) )######/\##########|\#_
115 |/ |#/\#/\#/\/ \#/\##| \()/ |##/\#/ \/\#/\#/\#| \|
116 ` |/ V V ` V )|| |()| ||( V ' V /\ \| '
117 ` ` ` ` / | |()| | \ ' '<||> '
118 ( | |()| | )\ /|/
119 __\ |__|()|__| /__\______/|/
120 (vvv(vvvv)(vvvv)vvv)______|/
121%
122 DELETE A FORTUNE!
123Don't some of these fortunes just drive you nuts?!
124Wouldn't you like to see some of them deleted from the system?
125You can! Just mail to `fortune' with the fortune you hate most,
126and we'll make sure it gets expunged.
127%
128 It's grad exam time...
129COMPUTER SCIENCE
130 Inside your desk you'll find a listing of the DEC/VMS operating
131system in IBM 1710 machine code. Show what changes are necessary to convert
132this code into a UNIX Berkeley 7 operating system. Prove that these fixes are
133bug free and run correctly. You should gain at least 150% efficiency in the
134new system. (You should take no more than 10 minutes on this question.)
135
136MATHEMATICS
137 If X equals PI times R^2, construct a formula showing how long
138it would take a fire ant to drill a hole through a dill pickle, if the
139length-girth ratio of the ant to the pickle were 98.17:1.
140
141GENERAL KNOWLEDGE
142Describe the Universe. Give three examples.
143%
144 It's grad exam time...
145MEDICINE
146 You have been provided with a razor blade, a piece of gauze, and a
147bottle of Scotch. Remove your appendix. Do not suture until your work has
148been inspected. (You have 15 minutes.)
149
150HISTORY
151 Describe the history of the papacy from its origins to the present
152day, concentrating especially, but not exclusively, on its social, political,
153economic, religious and philosophical impact upon Europe, Asia, America, and
154Africa. Be brief, concise, and specific.
155
156BIOLOGY
157 Create life. Estimate the differences in subsequent human culture
158if this form of life had been created 500 million years ago or earlier, with
159special attention to its probable effect on the English parliamentary system.
160%
161 Pittsburgh driver's test
16210: Potholes are
163 a) extremely dangerous.
164 b) patriotic.
165 c) the fault of the previous administration.
166 d) all going to be fixed next summer.
167The correct answer is b.
168Potholes destroy unpatriotic, unamerican, imported cars, since the holes
169are larger than the cars. If you drive a big, patriotic, American car
170you have nothing to worry about.
171%
172 Pittsburgh driver's test
1732: A traffic light at an intersection changes from yellow to red, you should
174 a) stop immediately.
175 b) proceed slowly through the intersection.
176 c) blow the horn.
177 d) floor it.
178The correct answer is d.
179If you said c, you were almost right, so give yourself a half point.
180%
181 Pittsburgh driver's test
1823: When stopped at an intersection you should
183 a) watch the traffic light for your lane.
184 b) watch for pedestrians crossing the street.
185 c) blow the horn.
186 d) watch the traffic light for the intersecting street.
187The correct answer is d.
188You need to start as soon as the traffic light for the intersecting
189street turns yellow.
190Answer c is worth a half point.
191%
192 Pittsburgh driver's test
1934: Exhaust gas is
194 a) beneficial.
195 b) not harmful.
196 c) toxic.
197 d) a punk band.
198The correct answer is b.
199The meddling Washington eco-freak communist bureaucrats who say otherwise
200are liars. (Message to those who answered d. Go back to California where
201you came from. Your kind are not welcome here.)
202%
203 Pittsburgh driver's test
2045: Your car's horn is a vital piece of safety equipment.
205 How often should you test it?
206 a) once a year.
207 b) once a month.
208 c) once a day.
209 d) once an hour.
210The correct answer is d.
211You should test your car's horn at least once every hour,
212and more often at night or in residential neighborhoods.
213%
214 Pittsburgh driver's test
2157: The car directly in front of you has a flashing right tail light
216 but a steady left tail light.
217 a) One of the tail lights is broken. You should blow your
218 horn to call the problem to the driver's attention.
219 b) The driver is signaling a right turn.
220 c) The driver is signaling a left turn.
221 d) The driver is from out of town.
222The correct answer is d.
223Tail lights are used in some foreign countries to signal turns.
224%
225 Pittsburgh driver's test
2268: Pedestrians are
227 a) irrelevant.
228 b) communists.
229 c) a nuisance.
230 d) difficult to clean off the front grille.
231The correct answer is a. Pedestrians are not in cars, so they
232are totally irrelevant to driving, and you should ignore them
233completely.
234%
235 Pittsburgh driver's test
2369: Roads are salted in order to
237 a) kill grass.
238 b) melt snow.
239 c) help the economy.
240 d) prevent potholes.
241The correct answer is c.
242Road salting employs thousands of persons directly, and millions more
243indirectly, for example, salt miners and rustproofers. Most important,
244salting reduces the life spans of cars, thus stimulating the car and
245steel industries.
246%
247
248 ( /\__________/\ )
249 \(^ @___..___@ ^)/
250 /\ (\/\/\/\/) /\
251 / \(/\/\/\/\)/ \
252 -( """""""""" )
253 \ _____ /
254 ( /( )\ )
255 _) (_V) (V_) (_
256 (V)(V)(V) (V)(V)(V)
257
258%
259 ___====-_ _-====___
260 _--~~~#####// \\#####~~~--_
261 _-~##########// ( ) \\##########~-_
262 -############// :\^^/: \\############-
263 _~############// (@::@) \\############~_
264 ~#############(( \\// ))#############~
265 -###############\\ (^^) //###############-
266 -#################\\ / "" \ //#################-
267 -###################\\/ \//###################-
268 _#/:##########/\######( /\ )######/\##########:\#_
269 :/ :#/\#/\#/\/ \#/\##\ : : /##/\#/ \/\#/\#/\#: \:
270 " :/ V V " V \#\: : : :/#/ V " V V \: "
271 " " " " \ : : : : / " " " "
272%
273 Has your family tried 'em?
274
275 POWDERMILK BISCUITS
276
277 Heavens, they're tasty and expeditious!
278
279 They're made from whole wheat, to give shy persons
280 the strength to get up and do what needs to be done.
281
282 POWDERMILK BISCUITS
283
284 Buy them ready-made in the big blue box with the picture of
285 the biscuit on the front, or in the brown bag with the dark
286 stains that indicate freshness.
287%
288 Answers to Last Fortunes' Questions:
2891) None. (Moses didn't have an ark).
2902) Your mother, by the pigeonhole principle.
2913) You don't know. Neither does your boss.
2924) Who cares?
2935) 6 (or maybe 4, or else 3). Mr. Alfred J. Duncan of Podunk, Montana,
294 submitted an interesting solution to Problem 5. Unfortunately, I lost it.
2956) I know the answer to this one, but I'm not telling! Suffer! Ha-ha-ha!!
2967) There is an interesting solution to this problem on page 10,953 of my
297 book, which you can pick up for $23.95 at finer bookstores and bathroom
298 supply outlets (or 99 cents at the table in front of Papyrus Books).
299%
300 Hard Copies and Chmod
301
302And everyone thinks computers are impersonal
303cold diskdrives hardware monitors
304user-hostile software
305
306of course they're only bits and bytes
307and characters and strings
308and files
309
310just some old textfiles from my old boyfriend
311telling me he loves me and
312he'll take care of me
313
314simply a discarded printout of a friend's directory
315deep intimate secrets and
316how he doesn't trust me
317
318couldn't hurt me more if they were scented in lavender or mould
319on personal stationery
320 -- terri@csd4.milw.wisc.edu
321%
322 `O' LEVEL COUNTER CULTURE
323Timewarp allowed: 3 hours. Do not scrawl situationalist graffiti in the
324margins or stub your rollups in the inkwells. Orange may be worn. Credit
325will be given to candidates who self-actualize.
326
327 1: Compare and contrast Pink Floyd with Black Sabbath and say why
328neither has street credibility.
329 2: "Even Buddha would have been hard pushed to reach Nirvana squatting
330on a juggernaut route." Consider the dialectic of inner truth and inner
331city.
332 3: Discuss degree of hassle involved in paranoia about being sucked
333into a black hole.
334 4: "The Egomaniac's Liberation Front were a bunch of revisionist
335ripoff merchants." Comment on this insult.
336 5: Account for the lack of references to brown rice in Dylan's lyrics.
337 6: "Castenada was a bit of a bozo." How far is this a fair summing
338up of western dualism?
339 7: Hermann Hesse was a Pisces. Discuss.
340%
341 OUTCONERR
342Twas FORTRAN as the doloop goes
343 Did logzerneg the ifthen block
344All kludgy were the function flows
345 And subroutines adhoc.
346
347Beware the runtime-bug my friend
348 squrooneg, the false goto
349Beware the infiniteloop
350 And shun the inprectoo.
351%
352 Safety Tips for the Post-Nuclear Existence
3531. Never use an elevator in a building that has been hit by a
354 nuclear bomb, use the stairs.
3552. When you're flying through the air, remember to roll
356 when you hit the ground.
3573. If you're on fire, avoid gasoline and other flammable materials.
3584. Don't attempt communication with dead people; it will only lead
359 to psychological problems.
3605. Food will be scarce, you will have to scavenge. Learn to recognize
361 foods that will be available after the bomb: mashed potatoes,
362 shredded wheat, tossed salad, ground beef, etc.
3636. Put your hand over your mouth when you sneeze, internal organs
364 will be scarce in the post-nuclear age.
3657. Try to be neat, fall only in designated piles.
3668. Drive carefully in "Heavy Fallout" areas, people could be
367 staggering illegally.
3689. Nutritionally, hundred dollar bills are equal to one's, but more
369 sanitary due to limited circulation.
37010. Accumulate mannequins now, spare parts will be in short
371 supply on D-Day.
372%
373 The Guy on the Right Doesn't Stand a Chance
374The guy on the right has the Osborne 1, a fully functional computer system
375in a portable package the size of a briefcase. The guy on the left has an
376Uzi submachine gun concealed in his attache case. Also in the case are four
377fully loaded, 32-round clips of 125-grain 9mm ammunition. The owner of the
378Uzi is going to get more tactical firepower delivered -- and delivered on
379target -- in less time, and with less effort. All for $795. It's inevitable.
380If you're going up against some guy with an Osborne 1 -- or any personal
381computer -- he's the one who's in trouble. One round from an Uzi can zip
382through ten inches of solid pine wood, so you can imagine what it will do
383to structural foam acrylic and sheet aluminum. In fact, detachable magazines
384for the Uzi are available in 25-, 32-, and 40-round capacities, so you can
385take out an entire office full of Apple II or IBM Personal Computers tied
386into Ethernet or other local-area networks. What about the new 16-bit
387computers, like the Lisa and Fortune? Even with the Winchester backup,
388they're no match for the Uzi. One quick burst and they'll find out what
389Unix means. Make your commanding officer proud. Get an Uzi -- and come home
390a winner in the fight for office automatic weapons.
391 -- "InfoWorld", June, 1984
392%
393 The Split-Atom Blues
394Gimme Twinkies, gimme wine,
395 Gimme jeans by Calvin Kline...
396But if you split those atoms fine,
397 Mama keep 'em off those genes of mine!
398Gimme zits, take my dough,
399 Gimme arsenic in my jelly roll...
400Call the devil and sell my soul,
401 But Mama keep dem atoms whole!
402 -- Milo Bloom
403%
404 THIS IS PLEDGE WEEK FOR THE FORTUNE PROGRAM
405
406If you like the fortune program, why not support it now with your contribution
407of a pithy fortune, clean or obscene? We cannot continue without your support.
408Less than 14% of all fortune users are contributors. That means that 86% of
409you are getting a free ride. We can't go on like this much longer. Federal
410cutbacks mean less money for fortunes, and unless user contributions increase
411to make up the difference, the fortune program will have to shut down between
412midnight and 8 a.m. Don't let this happen. Mail your fortunes right now to
413`fortune'. Just type in your favorite pithy fortune. Do it now before you
414forget. Our target is 300 new fortunes by the end of the week. Don't miss
415out. All fortunes will be acknowledged. If you contribute 30 fortunes or
416more, you will receive a free subscription to "The Fortune Hunter", our monthly
417program guide. If you contribute 50 or more, you will receive a free "Fortune
418Hunter" coffee mug!
419%
420 What I Did During My Fall Semester
421On the first day of my fall semester, I got up.
422Then I went to the library to find a thesis topic.
423Then I hung out in front of the Dover.
424
425On the second day of my fall semester, I got up.
426Then I went to the library to find a thesis topic.
427Then I hung out in front of the Dover.
428
429On the third day of my fall semester, I got up.
430Then I went to the library to find a thesis topic.
431I found a thesis topic:
432 How to keep people from hanging out in front of the Dover.
433 -- Sister Mary Elephant,
434 "Student Statement for Black Friday"
435%
436 1/2
437 /\(3)
438 | 2 1/3
439 | z dz cos(3 * PI / 9) = ln (e )
440 |
441 \/ 1
442
443The integral of z squared, dz
444From 1 to the square root of 3
445 Times the cosine
446 Of 3 PI over nine
447Is the log of the cube root of e
448%
449 THE DAILY PLANET
450
451 SUPERMAN SAVES DESSERT!
452 Plans to "Eat it later"
453%
454 *** A NEW KIND OF PROGRAMMING ***
455
456Do you want the instant respect that comes from being able to use technical
457terms that nobody understands? Do you want to strike fear and loathing into
458the hearts of DP managers everywhere? If so, then let the Famous Programmers'
459School lead you on... into the world of professional computer programming.
460They say a good programmer can write 20 lines of effective program per day.
461With our unique training course, we'll show you how to write 20 lines of code
462and lots more besides. Our training course covers every programming language
463in existence, and some that aren't. You'll learn why the on/off switch for a
464computer is so important, what the words *fatal error* mean, and who and what
465you should blame when you make a mistake.
466
467 Yes, I want the brochure describing this incredible offer.
468 I enclose $1000 is small unmarked bills to cover the cost of
469 postage and handling. (No live poultry, please.)
470
471*** Our Slogan: Top down programming for the masses. ***
472%
473 *** DO YOU HAVE A RESTLESS URGE TO PROGRAM? ***
474Do you want the instant respect that comes from being able to use technical
475terms that nobody understands? Do you want to strike fear and loathing into
476the hearts of DP managers everywhere? If so, then let the Famous Programmers'
477School lead you on... into the world of professional computer programming.
478
479 *** IS PROGRAMMING FOR YOU? ***
480Programming is not for everyone. But, if you have the desire to learn, we can
481help you get started. All you need is the Famous Programmers' Course and
482enough money to keep those lessons coming month after month.
483
484 *** TAKE OUR FREE APTITUDE TEST ***
485To help determine if you are qualified to be a programmer, take a moment to
486try this simple test:
487 1: Write down the numbers from zero to nine and the first six letters
488 of the alphabet (Hint: 0123456789ABCDEF).
489 2: Whose picture is on the back of a twenty-dollar bill?
490 3: What is the state capital of Idaho?
491If you managed to read all three questions without wondering why we asked
492them, you may have a future as a computer programmer.
493%
494 *** STUDENT SUCCESSES ***
495
496Many of our students have gone on to achieve great success in all fields of
497programming. One former student developed the concept of the personalized
498form letter. Does the phrase, "Dear Mr.(insert name), You may already be a
499winner!," sound familiar? Another student writes "After only five lessons I
500sold a "My Most Unforgettable Program" article to Corrosive Computing magazine.
501Another of our graduates writes, "I recently completed a database-management
502program for my department manager. My program touched him so deeply that he
503was speechless. He told me later that he had never seen such a program in
504his entire career. Thank you, Famous Programmers' school; only you could
505have made this possible." Send for our introductory brochure which explains
506in vague detail the operation of the Famous Programmers' School, and you'll
507be eligible to win a possible chance to enter a drawing, the winner of which
508can vie for a set of free steak knives. If you don't do it now, you'll hate
509yourself in the morning.
510%
511 ... This striving for excellence extends into people's
512personal lives as well. When '80s people buy something, they buy the
513best one, as determined by (1) price and (2) lack of availability.
514Eighties people buy imported dental floss. They buy gourmet baking
515soda. If an '80s couple goes to a restaurant where they have made a
516reservation three weeks in advance, and they are informed that their
517table is available, they stalk out immediately, because they know it is
518not an excellent restaurant. If it were, it would have an enormous
519crowd of excellence-oriented people like themselves waiting, their
520beepers going off like crickets in the night. An excellent restaurant
521wouldn't have a table ready immediately for anybody below the rank of
522Liza Minnelli.
523 -- Dave Barry, "In Search of Excellence"
524%
525 ... with liberty and justice for all who can afford it.
526%
527 12 + 144 + 20 + 3(4) 2
528 ---------------------- + 5(11) = 9 + 0
529 7
530
531A dozen, a gross and a score,
532Plus three times the square root of four,
533 Divided by seven,
534 Plus five times eleven,
535Equals nine squared plus zero, no more!
536%
537 7,140 pounds on the Sun
538 97 pounds on Mercury or Mars
539 255 pounds on Earth
540 232 pounds on Venus or Uranus
541 43 pounds on the Moon
542 648 pounds on Jupiter
543 275 pounds on Saturn
544 303 pounds on Neptune
545 13 pounds on Pluto
546
547 -- How much Elvis Presley would weigh at various places
548 in the solar system.
549%
550 A boy scout troop went on a hike. Crossing over a stream, one of
551the boys dropped his wallet into the water. Suddenly a carp jumped, grabbed
552the wallet and tossed it to another carp. Then that carp passed it to
553another carp, and all over the river carp appeared and tossed the wallet back
554and forth.
555 "Well, boys," said the Scout leader, "you've just seen a rare case
556of carp-to-carp walleting."
557%
558 A carpet installer decides to take a cigarette break after completing
559the installation in the first of several rooms he has to do. Finding them
560missing from his pocket he begins searching, only to notice a small lump in
561his recently completed carpet-installation. Not wanting to pull up all that
562work for a lousy pack of cigarettes he simply walks over and pounds the lump
563flat. Foregoing the break, he continues on to the other rooms to be carpeted.
564 At the end of the day, while loading his tools into his truck, two
565events occur almost simultaneously: he spies his pack of cigarettes on the
566dashboard of the truck, and the lady of the house summons him imperiously:
567"Have you seen my parakeet?"
568%
569 A circus foreman was making the rounds inspecting the big top when
570a scrawny little man entered the tent and walked up to him. "Are you the
571foreman around here?" he asked timidly. "I'd like to join your circus; I
572have what I think is a pretty good act."
573 The foreman nodded assent, whereupon the little man hurried over to
574the main pole and rapidly climbed up to the very tip-top of the big top.
575Drawing a deep breath, he hurled himself off into the air and began flapping
576his arms furiously. Amazingly, rather than plummeting to his death the little
577man began to fly all around the poles, lines, trapezes and other obstacles,
578performing astounding feats of aerobatics which ended in a long power dive
579from the top of the tent, pulling up into a gentle feet-first landing beside
580the foreman, who had been nonchalantly watching the whole time.
581 "Well," puffed the little man. "What do you think?"
582 "That's all you do?" answered the foreman scornfully. "Bird
583imitations?"
584%
585 A crow perched himself on a telephone wire. He was going to make a
586long-distance caw.
587%
588 A disciple of another sect once came to Drescher as he was eating
589his morning meal. "I would like to give you this personality test", said
590the outsider, "because I want you to be happy."
591 Drescher took the paper that was offered him and put it into the
592toaster -- "I wish the toaster to be happy too".
593%
594 A doctor, an architect, and a computer scientist were arguing about
595whose profession was the oldest. In the course of their arguments, they
596got all the way back to the Garden of Eden, whereupon the doctor said, "The
597medical profession is clearly the oldest, because Eve was made from Adam's
598rib, as the story goes, and that was a simply incredible surgical feat."
599 The architect did not agree. He said, "But if you look at the Garden
600itself, in the beginning there was chaos and void, and out of that the Garden
601and the world were created. So God must have been an architect."
602 The computer scientist, who'd listened carefully to all of this, then
603commented, "Yes, but where do you think the chaos came from?"
604%
605 A farm in the country side had several turkeys, it was known as the
606house of seven gobbles.
607%
608 A farmer decides that his three sows should be bred, and contacts a
609buddy down the road, who owns several boars. They agree on a stud fee, and
610the farmer puts the sows in his pickup and takes them down the road to the
611boars. He leaves them all day, and when he picks them up that night, asks
612the man how he can tell if it "took" or not. The breeder replies that if,
613the next morning, the sows were grazing on grass, they were pregnant, but if
614they were rolling in the mud as usual, they probably weren't.
615 Comes the morn, the sows are rolling in the mud as usual, so the
616farmer puts them in the truck and brings them back for a second full day of
617frolic. This continues for a week, since each morning the sows are rolling
618in the mud.
619 Around the sixth day, the farmer wakes up and tells his wife, "I
620don't have the heart to look again. This is getting ridiculous. You check
621today." With that, the wife peeks out the bedroom window and starts to laugh.
622 "What is it?" asks the farmer excitedly. "Are they grazing at last?"
623 "Nope." replies his wife. "Two of them are jumping up and down in
624the back of your truck, and the other one is honking the horn!"
625%
626 A father gave his teen-age daughter an untrained pedigreed pup for
627her birthday. An hour later, when wandered through the house, he found her
628looking at a puddle in the center of the kitchen. "My pup," she murmured
629sadly, "runneth over."
630%
631 A German, a Pole and a Czech left camp for a hike through the woods.
632After being reported missing a day or two later, rangers found two bears,
633one a male, one a female, looking suspiciously overstuffed. They killed
634the female, autopsied her, and sure enough, found the German and the Pole.
635 "What do you think?" said the the first ranger.
636 "The Czech is in the male," replied the second.
637%
638 A group of soldiers being prepared for a practice landing on a tropical
639island were warned of the one danger the island held, a poisonous snake that
640could be readily identified by its alternating orange and black bands. They
641were instructed, should they find one of these snakes, to grab the tail end of
642the snake with one hand and slide the other hand up the body of the snake to
643the snake's head. Then, forcefully, bend the thumb above the snake's head
644downward to break the snake's spine. All went well for the landing, the
645charge up the beach, and the move into the jungle. At one foxhole site, two
646men were starting to dig and wondering what had happened to their partner.
647Suddenly he staggered out of the underbrush, uniform in shreds, covered with
648blood. He collapsed to the ground. His buddies were so shocked they could
649only blurt out, "What happened?"
650 "I ran from the beachhead to the edge of the jungle, and, as I hit the
651ground, I saw an orange and black striped snake right in front of me. I
652grabbed its tail end with my left hand. I placed my right hand above my left
653hand. I held firmly with my left hand and slid my right hand up the body of
654the snake. When I reached the head of the snake I flicked my right thumb down
655to break the snake's spine... did you ever goose a tiger?"
656%
657 A guy returns from a long trip to Europe, having left his beloved
658dog in his brother's care. The minute he's cleared customs, he calls up his
659brother and inquires after his pet.
660 "Your dog's dead," replies his brother bluntly.
661 The guy is devastated. "You know how much that dog meant to me,"
662he moaned into the phone. "Couldn't you at least have thought of a nicer way
663of breaking the news? Couldn't you have said, `Well, you know, the dog got
664outside one day, and was crossing the street, and a car was speeding around a
665corner...' or something...? Why are you always so thoughtless?"
666 "Look, I'm sorry," said his brother, "I guess I just didn't think."
667 "Okay, okay, let's just put it behind us. How are you anyway?
668How's Mom?"
669 His brother is silent a moment. "Uh," he stammers, "uh... Mom got
670outside one day..."
671%
672 A guy walks into a pub and asks: "Does anyone here own a Doberman?
673I feel really bad about this, but my Chihuahua just killed it."
674 A man leaps to his feet and replies, "Yes, I do, but how can that
675be? I raised that dog from a pup to be a vicious killer."
676 "Yes, well, that's all well and good," replied the first, "but my
677dog's stuck in its throat."
678%
679 A hard-luck actor who appeared in one colossal disaster after another
680finally got a break, a broken leg to be exact. Someone pointed out that it's
681the first time the poor fellow's been in the same cast for more than a week.
682%
683 A horse breeder has his young colts bottle-fed after they're three
684days old. He heard that a foal and his mummy are soon parted.
685%
686 A housewife, an accountant and a lawyer were asked to add 2 and 2.
687 The housewife replied, "Four!".
688 The accountant said, "It's either 3 or 4. Let me run those figures
689through my spread sheet one more time."
690 The lawyer pulled the drapes, dimmed the lights and asked in a
691hushed voice, "How much do you want it to be?"
692%
693 A lawyer named Strange was shopping for a tombstone. After he had
694made his selection, the stonecutter asked him what inscription he
695would like on it. "Here lies an honest man and a lawyer," responded the
696lawyer.
697 "Sorry, but I can't do that," replied the stonecutter. "In this
698state, it's against the law to bury two people in the same grave. However,
699I could put ``here lies an honest lawyer'', if that would be okay."
700 "But that won't let people know who it is" protested the lawyer.
701 "Certainly will," retorted the stonecutter. "people will read it
702and exclaim, "That's Strange!"
703%
704 A little dog goes into a saloon in the Wild West, and beckons to
705the bartender. "Hey, bartender, gimmie a whiskey."
706 The bartender ignores him.
707 "Hey bartender, gimmie a whiskey."
708 Still ignored.
709 "HEY BARMAN!! GIMMIE A WHISKEY!!"
710 The bartender takes out his six-shooter and shoots the dog in the
711leg, and the dog runs out the saloon, howling in pain.
712 Three years later, the wee dog appears again, wearing boots,
713jeans, chaps, a Stetson, gun belt, and guns. He ambles slowly into the
714saloon, goes up to the bar, leans over it, and says to the bartender,
715"I'm here t'git the man that shot muh paw."
716%
717 A man enters a pet shop, seeking to purchase a parrot. He points
718to a fine colorful bird and asks how much it costs.
719 When he is told it costs 70,000 zlotys, he whistles in amazement
720and asks why it is so much. "Well, the bird is fluent in Italian and
721French and can recite the periodic table." He points to another bird
722and is told that it costs 90,000 zlotys because it speaks French and
723German, can knit and can curse in Latin.
724 Finally the customer asks about a drab gray bird. "Ah," he is
725told, "that one is 150,000."
726 "Why, what can it do?" he asks.
727 "Well," says the shopkeeper, "to tell you the truth, he doesn't
728do anything, but the other birds call him Mr. Secretary."
729 -- being told in Poland, 1987
730%
731 A man from AI walked across the mountains to SAIL to see the Master,
732Knuth. When he arrived, the Master was nowhere to be found. "Where is the
733wise one named Knuth?" he asked a passing student.
734 "Ah," said the student, "you have not heard. He has gone on a
735pilgrimage across the mountains to the temple of AI to seek out new
736disciples."
737 Hearing this, the man was Enlightened.
738%
739 A man met a beautiful young woman in a bar. They got along well,
740shared dinner, and had a marvelous evening. When he left her, he told her
741that he had really enjoyed their time together, and hoped to see her again,
742soon. Smiling yes, she gave him her phone number.
743 The next day, he called her up and asked her to go dancing. She
744agreed. As they talked, he jokingly asked her what her favorite flower was.
745Realizing his intentions, she told him that he shouldn't bring her flowers
746-- if he wanted to bring her a gift, well, he should bring her a Swiss Army
747knife!
748 Surprised, and not a little intrigued, he spent a large part of the
749afternoon finding a particularly unusual one. Arriving at her apartment
750he immediately presented her with the knife. She ooohed and ahhhed over it
751for a minute, and then carefully placed it in a drawer, that the man couldn't
752help but see was full of Swiss Army knives.
753 Surprised, he asked her why she had collected so many.
754 "Well, I'm young and attractive now", blushed the woman, "but that
755won't always be true. And boy scouts will do anything for a Swiss Army knife!"
756%
757 A man pleaded innocent of any wrong doing when caught by the police
758during a raid at the home of a mobster, excusing himself by claiming that he
759was making a bolt for the door.
760%
761 A man sank into the psychiatrist's couch and said, "I have a
762terrible problem, Doctor. I have a son at Harvard and another son at
763Princeton; I've just gifted each of them with a new Ferrari; I've got
764homes in Beverly Hills, Palm Beach, and a co-op in New York; and I've
765got a thriving ranch in Venezuela. My wife is a gorgeous young actress
766who considers my two mistresses to be her best friends."
767 The psychiatrist looked at the patient, confused. "Did I miss
768something? It sounds to me like you have no problems at all."
769 "But, Doctor, I only make $175 a week."
770%
771 A man walked into a bar with his alligator and asked the bartender,
772"Do you serve lawyers here?".
773 "Sure do," replied the bartender.
774 "Good," said the man. "Give me a beer, and I'll have a lawyer for
775my 'gator."
776%
777 A man was reading The Canterbury Tales one Saturday morning, when his
778wife asked "What have you got there?" Replied he, "Just my cup and Chaucer."
779%
780 A man who keeps stealing mopeds is an obvious cycle-path.
781%
782 A manager asked a programmer how long it would take him to finish the
783program on which he was working. "I will be finished tomorrow," the programmer
784promptly replied.
785 "I think you are being unrealistic," said the manager. "Truthfully,
786how long will it take?"
787 The programmer thought for a moment. "I have some features that I wish
788to add. This will take at least two weeks," he finally said.
789 "Even that is too much to expect," insisted the manager, "I will be
790satisfied if you simply tell me when the program is complete."
791 The programmer agreed to this.
792 Several years slated, the manager retired. On the way to his
793retirement lunch, he discovered the programmer asleep at his terminal.
794He had been programming all night.
795 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
796%
797 A manager was about to be fired, but a programmer who worked for him
798invented a new program that became popular and sold well. As a result, the
799manager retained his job.
800 The manager tried to give the programmer a bonus, but the programmer
801refused it, saying, "I wrote the program because I though it was an interesting
802concept, and thus I expect no reward."
803 The manager, upon hearing this, remarked, "This programmer, though he
804holds a position of small esteem, understands well the proper duty of an
805employee. Lets promote him to the exalted position of management consultant!"
806 But when told this, the programmer once more refused, saying, "I exist
807so that I can program. If I were promoted, I would do nothing but waste
808everyone's time. Can I go now? I have a program that I'm working on."
809 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
810%
811 A manager went to the master programmer and showed him the requirements
812document for a new application. The manager asked the master: "How long will
813it take to design this system if I assign five programmers to it?"
814 "It will take one year," said the master promptly.
815 "But we need this system immediately or even sooner! How long will it
816take it I assign ten programmers to it?"
817 The master programmer frowned. "In that case, it will take two years."
818 "And what if I assign a hundred programmers to it?"
819 The master programmer shrugged. "Then the design will never be
820completed," he said.
821 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
822%
823 A manger went to his programmers and told them: "As regards to your
824work hours: you are going to have to come in at nine in the morning and leave
825at five in the afternoon." At this, all of them became angry and several
826resigned on the spot.
827 So the manager said: "All right, in that case you may set your own
828working hours, as long as you finish your projects on schedule." The
829programmers, now satisfied, began to come in a noon and work to the wee
830hours of the morning.
831 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
832%
833 A master programmer passed a novice programmer one day. The master
834noted the novice's preoccupation with a hand-held computer game. "Excuse me",
835he said, "may I examine it?"
836 The novice bolted to attention and handed the device to the master.
837"I see that the device claims to have three levels of play: Easy, Medium,
838and Hard", said the master. "Yet every such device has another level of play,
839where the device seeks not to conquer the human, nor to be conquered by the
840human."
841 "Pray, great master," implored the novice, "how does one find this
842mysterious setting?"
843 The master dropped the device to the ground and crushed it under foot.
844And suddenly the novice was enlightened.
845 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
846%
847 A master was explaining the nature of Tao to one of his novices.
848"The Tao is embodied in all software -- regardless of how insignificant,"
849said the master.
850 "Is the Tao in a hand-held calculator?" asked the novice.
851 "It is," came the reply.
852 "Is the Tao in a video game?" continued the novice.
853 "It is even in a video game," said the master.
854 "And is the Tao in the DOS for a personal computer?"
855 The master coughed and shifted his position slightly. "The lesson
856is over for today.", he said.
857 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
858%
859 A master was explaining the nature of the Tao to one of his novices,
860"The Tao is embodied in all software -- regardless of how insignificant,"
861said the master.
862 "Is the Tao in a hand-held calculator?" asked the novice.
863 "It is," came the reply.
864 "Is the Tao in a video game?" continued the novice.
865 "It is even in a video game," said the master.
866 "And is the Tao in the DOS for a personal computer?"
867 The master coughed and shifted his position slightly. "The lesson is
868over for today," he said.
869 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
870%
871 A MODERN FABLE
872
873Aesop's fables and other traditional children's stories involve allegory
874far too subtle for the youth of today. Children need an updated message
875with contemporary circumstance and plot line, and short enough to suit
876today's minute attention span.
877
878 The Troubled Aardvark
879
880Once upon a time, there was an aardvark whose only pleasure in life was
881driving from his suburban bungalow to his job at a large brokerage house
882in his brand new 4x4. He hated his manipulative boss, his conniving and
883unethical co-workers, his greedy wife, and his snivelling, spoiled
884children. One day, the aardvark reflected on the meaning of his life and
885his career and on the unchecked, catastrophic decline of his nation, its
886pathetic excuse for leadership, and the complete ineffectiveness of any
887personal effort he could make to change the status quo. Overcome by a
888wave of utter depression and self-doubt, he decided to take the only
889course of action that would bring him greater comfort and happiness: he
890drove to the mall and bought imported consumer electronics goods.
891
892MORAL OF THE STORY: Invest in foreign consumer electronics manufacturers.
893 -- Tom Annau
894%
895 A musical reviewer admitted he always praised the first show of a
896new theatrical season. "Who am I to stone the first cast?"
897%
898 A musician of more ambition than talent composed an elegy at
899the death of composer Edward MacDowell. She played the elegy for the
900pianist Josef Hoffman, then asked his opinion. "Well, it's quite
901nice," he replied, but don't you think it would be better if..."
902 "If what?" asked the composer.
903 "If ... if you had died and MacDowell had written the elegy?"
904%
905 A novel approach is to remove all power from the system, which
906removes most system overhead so that resources can be fully devoted to
907doing nothing. Benchmarks on this technique are promising; tremendous
908amounts of nothing can be produced in this manner. Certain hardware
909limitations can limit the speed of this method, especially in the
910larger systems which require a more involved & less efficient
911power-down sequence.
912 An alternate approach is to pull the main breaker for the
913building, which seems to provide even more nothing, but in truth has
914bugs in it, since it usually inhibits the systems which keep the beer
915cool.
916%
917 A novice asked the Master: "Here is a programmer that never designs,
918documents, or tests his programs. Yet all who know him consider him one of
919the best programmers in the world. Why is this?"
920 The Master replies: "That programmer has mastered the Tao. He has
921gone beyond the need for design; he does not become angry when the system
922crashes, but accepts the universe without concern. He has gone beyond the
923need for documentation; he no longer cares if anyone else sees his code. He
924has gone beyond the need for testing; each of his programs are perfect within
925themselves, serene and elegant, their purpose self-evident. Truly, he has
926entered the mystery of the Tao."
927 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
928%
929 A novice asked the master: "I have a program that sometimes runs and
930sometimes aborts. I have followed the rules of programming, yet I am totally
931baffled. What is the reason for this?"
932 The master replied: "You are confused because you do not understand
933the Tao. Only a fool expects rational behavior from his fellow humans. Why
934do you expect it from a machine that humans have constructed? Computers
935simulate determinism; only the Tao is perfect.
936 The rules of programming are transitory; only the Tao is eternal.
937Therefore you must contemplate the Tao before you receive enlightenment."
938 "But how will I know when I have received enlightenment?" asked the
939novice.
940 "Your program will then run correctly," replied the master.
941 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
942%
943 A novice asked the master: "I perceive that one computer company is
944much larger than all others. It towers above its competition like a giant
945among dwarfs. Any one of its divisions could comprise an entire business.
946Why is this so?"
947 The master replied, "Why do you ask such foolish questions? That
948company is large because it is so large. If it only made hardware, nobody
949would buy it. If it only maintained systems, people would treat it like a
950servant. But because it combines all of these things, people think it one
951of the gods! By not seeking to strive, it conquers without effort."
952 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
953%
954 A novice asked the master: "In the east there is a great tree-structure
955that men call 'Corporate Headquarters'. It is bloated out of shape with
956vice-presidents and accountants. It issues a multitude of memos, each saying
957'Go, Hence!' or 'Go, Hither!' and nobody knows what is meant. Every year new
958names are put onto the branches, but all to no avail. How can such an
959unnatural entity exist?"
960 The master replies: "You perceive this immense structure and are
961disturbed that it has no rational purpose. Can you not take amusement from
962its endless gyrations? Do you not enjoy the untroubled ease of programming
963beneath its sheltering branches? Why are you bothered by its uselessness?"
964 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
965%
966 A novice programmer was once assigned to code a simple financial
967package.
968 The novice worked furiously for many days, but when his master
969reviewed his program, he discovered that it contained a screen editor, a set
970of generalized graphics routines, and artificial intelligence interface,
971but not the slightest mention of anything financial.
972 When the master asked about this, the novice became indignant.
973"Don't be so impatient," he said, "I'll put the financial stuff in eventually."
974 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
975%
976 A novice was trying to fix a broken lisp machine by turning the
977power off and on. Knight, seeing what the student was doing spoke sternly,
978"You cannot fix a machine by just power-cycling it with no understanding
979of what is going wrong." Knight turned the machine off and on. The
980machine worked.
981%
982 A Pole, a Soviet, an American, an Englishman and a Canadian were lost
983in a forest in the dead of winter. As they were sitting around a fire, they
984noticed a pack of wolves eyeing them hungrily.
985 The Englishman volunteered to sacrifice himself for the rest of the
986party. He walked out into the night.
987 The American, not wanting to be outdone by an Englishman, offered to
988be the next victim. The wolves eagerly accepted his offer, and devoured him,
989too.
990 The Soviet, believing himself to be better than any American, turned
991to the Pole and says, "Well, comrade, I shall volunteer to give my life to
992save a fellow socialist." He leaves the shelter and goes out to be killed by
993the wolf pack.
994 At this point, the Pole opened his jacket and pulls out a machine gun.
995He takes aim in the general direction of the wolf pack and in a few seconds
996has killed them all.
997 The Canadian asked the Pole, "Why didn't you do that before the others
998went out to be killed?
999 The Pole pulls a bottle of vodka from the other side of his jacket.
1000He smiles and replies, "Five men on one bottle -- too many."
1001%
1002 A priest was walking along the cliffs at Dover when he came upon
1003two locals pulling another man ashore on the end of a rope. "That's what
1004I like to see", said the priest, "A man helping his fellow man".
1005 As he was walking away, one local remarked to the other, "Well,
1006he sure doesn't know the first thing about shark fishing."
1007%
1008 A program should be light and agile, its subroutines connected like a
1009strings of pearls. The spirit and intent of the program should be retained
1010throughout. There should be neither too little nor too much, neither needless
1011loops nor useless variables, neither lack of structure nor overwhelming
1012rigidity.
1013 A program should follow the 'Law of Least Astonishment'. What is this
1014law? It is simply that the program should always respond to the user in the
1015way that astonishes him least.
1016 A program, no matter how complex, should act as a single unit. The
1017program should be directed by the logic within rather than by outward
1018appearances.
1019 If the program fails in these requirements, it will be in a state of
1020disorder and confusion. The only way to correct this is to rewrite the
1021program.
1022 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
1023%
1024 A programmer from a very large computer company went to a software
1025conference and then returned to report to his manager, saying: "What sort
1026of programmers work for other companies? They behaved badly and were
1027unconcerned with appearances. Their hair was long and unkempt and their
1028clothes were wrinkled and old. They crashed out hospitality suites and they
1029made rude noises during my presentation."
1030 The manager said: "I should have never sent you to the conference.
1031Those programmers live beyond the physical world. They consider life absurd,
1032an accidental coincidence. They come and go without knowing limitations.
1033Without a care, they live only for their programs. Why should they bother
1034with social conventions?"
1035 "They are alive within the Tao."
1036 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
1037%
1038 A ranger was walking through the forest and encountered a hunter
1039carrying a shotgun and a dead loon. "What in the world do you think you're
1040doing? Don't you know that the loon is on the endangered species list?"
1041 Instead of answering, the hunter showed the ranger his game bag,
1042which contained twelve more loons.
1043 "Why would you shoot loons?", the ranger asked.
1044 "Well, my family eats them and I sell the plumage."
1045 "What's so special about a loon? What does it taste like?"
1046 "Oh, somewhere between an American Bald Eagle and a Trumpeter Swan."
1047%
1048 A reader reports that when the patient died, the attending doctor
1049recorded the following on the patient's chart: "Patient failed to fulfill
1050his wellness potential."
1051
1052 Another doctor reports that in a recent issue of the *American Journal
1053of Family Practice* fleas were called "hematophagous arthropod vectors."
1054
1055 A reader reports that the Army calls them "vertically deployed anti-
1056personnel devices." You probably call them bombs.
1057
1058 At McClellan Air Force base in Sacramento, California, civilian
1059mechanics were placed on "non-duty, non-pay status." That is, they were fired.
1060
1061 After taking the trip of a lifetime, our reader sent his twelve rolls
1062of film to Kodak for developing (or "processing," as Kodak likes to call it)
1063only to receive the following notice: "We must report that during the handling
1064of your twelve 35mm Kodachrome slide orders, the films were involved in an
1065unusual laboratory experience." The use of the passive is a particularly nice
1066touch, don't you think? Nobody did anything to the films; they just had a bad
1067experience. Of course our reader can always go back to Tibet and take his
1068pictures all over again, using the twelve replacement rolls Kodak so generously
1069sent him.
1070 -- Quarterly Review of Doublespeak (NCTE)
1071%
1072 A reverend wanted to telephone another reverend. He told the operator,
1073"This is a parson to parson call."
1074 A farmer with extremely prolific hens posted the following sign. "Free
1075Chickens. Our Coop Runneth Over."
1076 Two brothers, Mort and Bill, like to sail. While Bill has a great
1077deal of experience, he certainly isn't the rigger Mort is.
1078 Inheritance taxes are getting so out of line, that the deceased family
1079often doesn't have a legacy to stand on.
1080 The judge fined the jaywalker fifty dollars and told him if he was
1081caught again, he would be thrown in jail. Fine today, cooler tomorrow.
1082 A rock store eventually closed down; they were taking too much for
1083granite.
1084%
1085 A Scotsman was strolling across High Street one day wearing his kilt.
1086As he neared the far curb, he noticed two young blondes in a red convertible
1087eyeing him and giggling. One of them called out, "Hey, Scotty! What's worn
1088under the kilt?"
1089 He strolled over to the side of the car and asked, "Ach, lass, are you
1090SURE you want to know?" Somewhat nervously, the blonde replied yes, she did
1091really want to know.
1092 The Scotsman leaned closer and confided, "Why, lass, nothing's worn
1093under the kilt, everything's in perfect workin' order!"
1094%
1095 A sheet of paper crossed my desk the other day and as I read it,
1096realization of a basic truth came over me. So simple! So obvious we couldn't
1097see it. John Knivlen, Chairman of Polamar Repeater Club, an amateur radio
1098group, had discovered how IC circuits work. He says that smoke is the thing
1099that makes ICs work because every time you let the smoke out of an IC circuit,
1100it stops working. He claims to have verified this with thorough testing.
1101 I was flabbergasted! Of course! Smoke makes all things electrical
1102work. Remember the last time smoke escaped from your Lucas voltage regulator
1103Didn't it quit working? I sat and smiled like an idiot as more of the truth
1104dawned. It's the wiring harness that carries the smoke from one device to
1105another in your Mini, MG or Jag. And when the harness springs a leak, it lets
1106the smoke out of everything at once, and then nothing works. The starter motor
1107requires large quantities of smoke to operate properly, and that's why the wire
1108going to it is so large.
1109 Feeling very smug, I continued to expand my hypothesis. Why are Lucas
1110electronics more likely to leak than say Bosch? Hmmm... Aha!!! Lucas is
1111British, and all things British leak! British convertible tops leak water,
1112British engines leak oil, British displacer units leak hydrostatic fluid, and
1113I might add British tires leak air, and the British defense unit leaks
1114secrets... so naturally British electronics leak smoke.
1115 -- Jack Banton, PCC Automotive Electrical School
1116%
1117 A shy teenage boy finally worked up the nerve to give a gift to
1118Maddona, a young puppy. It hitched its waggin' to a star.
1119 A girl spent a couple hours on the phone talking to her two best
1120friends, Maureen Jones, and Maureen Brown. When asked by her father why she
1121had been on the phone so long, she responded "I heard a funny story today
1122and I've been telling it to the Maureens."
1123 Three actors, Tom, Fred, and Cec, wanted to do the jousting scene
1124from Don Quixote for a local TV show. "I'll play the title role," proposed
1125Tom. "Fred can portray Sancho Panza, and Cecil B. De Mille."
1126%
1127 A woman was married to a golfer. One day she asked, "If I were
1128to die, would you remarry?"
1129 After some thought, the man replied, "Yes, I've been very happy in
1130this marriage and I would want to be this happy again."
1131 The wife asked, "Would you give your new wife my car?"
1132 "Yes," he replied. "That's a good car and it runs well."
1133 "Well, would you live in this house?"
1134 "Yes, it is a lovely house and you have decorated it beautifully.
1135I've always loved it here."
1136 "Well, would you give her my golf clubs?"
1137 "No."
1138 "Why not?"
1139 "She's left handed."
1140%
1141 A women was in love with fourteen soldiers, it was clearly platoonic.
1142%
1143 A young honeymoon couple were touring southern Florida and happened
1144to stop at one of the rattlesnake farms along the road. After seeing the
1145sights, they engaged in small talk with the man that handled the snakes.
1146"Gosh!" exclaimed the new bride. "You certainly have a dangerous job.
1147Don't you ever get bitten by the snakes?"
1148 "Yes, upon rare occasions," answered the handler.
1149 "Well," she continued, "just what do you do when you're bitten by
1150a snake?"
1151 "I always carry a razor-sharp knife in my pocket, and as soon as I
1152am bitten, I make deep criss-cross marks across the fang entry and then
1153suck the poison from the wound."
1154 "What, uh... what would happen if you were to accidentally *sit* on
1155a rattler?" persisted the woman.
1156 "Ma'am," answered the snake handler, "that will be the day I learn
1157who my real friends are."
1158%
1159 A young married couple had their first child. Their original pride
1160and joy slowly turned to concern however, for after a couple of years the
1161child had never uttered any form of speech. They hired the best speech
1162therapists, doctors, psychiatrists, all to no avail. The child simply refused
1163to speak. One morning when the child was five, while the husband was reading
1164the paper, and the wife was feeding the dog, the little kid looks up from
1165his bowl and said, "My cereal's cold."
1166 The couple is stunned. The man, in tears, confronts his son. "Son,
1167after all these years, why have you waited so long to say something?".
1168 Shrugs the kid, "Everything's been okay 'til now".
1169%
1170 ACHTUNG!!!
1171Das machine is nicht fur gefingerpoken und mittengrabben. Ist easy
1172schnappen der springenwerk, blowenfusen und corkenpoppen mit
1173spitzensparken. Ist nicht fur gewerken by das dummkopfen. Das
1174rubbernecken sightseeren keepen hands in das pockets. Relaxen und
1175vatch das blinkenlights!!!
1176%
1177 After sifting through the overwritten remaining blocks of Luke's home
1178directory, Luke and PDP-1 sped away from /u/lars, across the surface of the
1179Winchester riding Luke's flying read/write head. PDP-1 had Luke stop at the
1180edge of the cylinder overlooking /usr/spool/uucp.
1181 "Unix-to-Unix Copy Program;" said PDP-1. "You will never find a more
1182wretched hive of bugs and flamers. We must be cautious."
1183 -- DECWARS
1184%
1185 After the Children of Israel had wandered for thirty-nine years in
1186 the wilderness, Ferdinand Feghoot arrived to make sure that they
1187would finally find and enter the Promised Land. With him, he brought his
1188favorite robot, faithful old Yewtoo Artoo, to carry his gear and do assorted
1189camp chores.
1190 The Israelites soon got over their initial fear of the robot and,
1191 as the months passed, became very fond of him. Patriarchs took to
1192discussing abstruse theological problems with him, and each evening the
1193children all gathered to hear the many stories with which he was programmed.
1194Therefore it came as a great shock to them when, just as their journey was
1195ending, he abruptly wore out. Even Feghoot couldn't console them.
1196 "It may be true, Ferdinand Feghoot," said Moses, "that our friend
1197Yewtoo Artoo was soulless, but we cannot believe it. He must be properly
1198interred. We cannot embalm him as do the Egyptians. Nor have we wood for
1199a coffin. But I do have a most splendid skin from one of Pharoah's own
1200cattle. We shall bury him in it."
1201 Feghoot agreed. "Yes, let this be his last rusting place." "Rusting?"
1202 Moses cried. "Not in this dreadful dry desert!"
1203 "Ah!" sighed Ferdinand Feghoot, shedding a tear, "I fear you do not
1204realize the full significance of Pharoah's oxhide!"
1205 -- Grendel Briarton "Through Time & Space With Ferdinand
1206 Feghoot!"
1207%
1208 After watching an extremely attractive maternity-ward patient
1209earnestly thumbing her way through a telephone directory for several
1210minutes, a hospital orderly finally asked if he could be of some help.
1211 "No, thanks," smiled the young mother, "I'm just looking for a
1212name for my baby."
1213 "But the hospital supplies a special booklet that lists hundreds
1214of first names and their meanings," said the orderly.
1215 "That won't help," said the woman, "my baby already has a first
1216name."
1217%
1218 All that you touch, And all you create,
1219 All that you see, And all you destroy,
1220 All that you taste, All that you do,
1221 All you feel, And all you say,
1222 And all that you love, All that you eat,
1223 And all that you hate, And everyone you meet,
1224 All you distrust, All that you slight,
1225 All you save, And everyone you fight,
1226 And all that you give, And all that is now,
1227 And all that you deal, And all that is gone,
1228 All that you buy, And all that's to come,
1229 Beg, borrow or steal, And everything under the sun is
1230 in tune,
1231 But the sun is eclipsed
1232 By the moon.
1233
1234There is no dark side of the moon... really... matter of fact it's all dark.
1235 -- Pink Floyd, "Dark Side of the Moon"
1236%
1237 America, Russia and Japan are sending up a two year shuttle mission
1238with one astronaut from each country. Since it's going to be two long, lonely
1239years up there, each may bring any form of entertainment weighing 150 pounds
1240or less. The American approaches the NASA board and asks to take his 125 lb.
1241wife. They approve.
1242 The Japanese astronaut says, "I've always wanted to learn Latin. I
1243want 100 lbs. of textbooks." The NASA board approves. The Russian astronaut
1244thinks for a second and says, "Two years... all right, I want 150 pounds of
1245the best Cuban cigars ever made." Again, NASA okays it.
1246 Two years later, the shuttle lands and everyone is gathered outside
1247to welcome back the astronauts. Well, it's obvious what the American's been
1248up to, he and his wife are each holding an infant. The crowd cheers. The
1249Japanese astronaut steps out and makes a 10 minute speech in absolutely
1250perfect Latin. The crowd doesn't understand a word of it, but they're
1251impressed and they cheer again. The Russian astronaut stomps out, clenches
1252the podium until his knuckles turn white, glares at the first row and
1253screams: "Anybody got a match?"
1254%
1255 An architect's first work is apt to be spare and clean. He knows
1256he doesn't know what he's doing, so he does it carefully and with great
1257restraint.
1258 As he designs the first work, frill after frill and embellishment
1259after embellishment occur to him. These get stored away to be used "next
1260time". Sooner or later the first system is finished, and the architect,
1261with firm confidence and a demonstrated mastery of that class of systems,
1262is ready to build a second system.
1263 This second is the most dangerous system a man ever designs. When
1264he does his third and later ones, his prior experiences will confirm each
1265other as to the general characteristics of such systems, and their differences
1266will identify those parts of his experience that are particular and not
1267generalizable.
1268 The general tendency is to over-design the second system, using all
1269the ideas and frills that were cautiously sidetracked on the first one.
1270The result, as Ovid says, is a "big pile".
1271 -- Frederick Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"
1272%
1273 An eighty-year-old woman is rocking away the afternoon on her
1274porch when she sees an old, tarnished lamp sitting near the steps. She
1275picks it up, rubs it gently, and lo and behold a genie appears! The genie
1276tells the woman the he will grant her any three wishes her heart desires.
1277 After a bit of thought, she says, "I wish I were young and
1278beautiful!" And POOF! In a cloud of smoke she becomes a young, beautiful,
1279voluptuous woman.
1280 After a little more thought, she says, "I would like to be rich
1281for the rest of my life." And POOF! When the smoke clears, there are
1282stacks and stacks of money lying on the porch.
1283 The genie then says, "Now, madam, what is your final wish?"
1284 "Well," says the woman, "I would like for you to transform my
1285faithful old cat, whom I have loved dearly for fifteen years, into a young
1286handsome prince!"
1287 And with another billow of smoke the cat is changed into a tall,
1288handsome, young man, with dark hair, dressed in a dashing uniform.
1289 As they gaze at each other in adoration, the prince leans over to
1290the woman and whispers into her ear, "Now, aren't you sorry you had me
1291fixed?"
1292%
1293 An elderly man stands in line for hours at a Warsaw meat store (meat
1294is severely rationed). When the butcher comes out at the end of the day and
1295announces that there is no meat left, the man flies into a rage.
1296 "What is this?" he shouts. "I fought against the Nazis, I worked hard
1297all my life, I've been a loyal citizen, and now you tell me I can't even buy a
1298piece of meat? This rotten system stinks!"
1299 Suddenly a thuggish man in a black leather coat sidles up and murmurs
1300"Take it easy, comrade. Remember what would have happened if you had made an
1301outburst like that only a few years ago" -- and he points an imaginary gun to
1302this head and pulls the trigger.
1303 The old man goes home, and his wife says, "So they're out of meat
1304again?"
1305 "It's worse than that," he replies. "They're out of bullets."
1306 -- making the rounds in Warsaw, 1987
1307%
1308 An Englishman, a Frenchman and an American are captured by cannibals.
1309The leader of the tribe comes up to them and says, "Even though you are about
1310to killed, your deaths will not be in vain. Every part of your body will be
1311used. Your flesh will be eaten, for my people are hungry. Your hair will be
1312woven into clothing, for my people are naked. Your bones will be ground up
1313and made into medicine, for my people are sick. Your skin will be stretched
1314over canoe frames, for my people need transportation. We are a fair people,
1315and we offer you a chance to kill yourself with our ceremonial knife."
1316 The Englishman accepts the knife and yells, "God Save the Queen",
1317while plunging the knife into his heart.
1318 The Frenchman removes the knife from the fallen body, and yells,
1319"Vive la France", while plunging the knife into his heart.
1320 The American removes the knife from the fallen body, and yells,
1321while stabbing himself all over his body, "Here's your lousy canoe!"
1322%
1323 An older student came to Otis and said, "I have been to see a
1324great number of teachers and I have given up a great number of pleasures.
1325I have fasted, been celibate and stayed awake nights seeking enlightenment.
1326I have given up everything I was asked to give up and I have suffered, but
1327I have not been enlightened. What should I do?"
1328 Otis replied, "Give up suffering."
1329 -- Camden Benares, "Zen Without Zen Masters"
1330%
1331 And St. Attila raised the hand grenade up on high saying "O Lord
1332bless this thy hand grenade that with it thou mayest blow thine enemies
1333to tiny bits, in thy mercy" and the Lord did grin and the people did feast
1334upon the lambs and sloths and carp and anchovies and orang-utangs and
1335breakfast cereals and fruit bats and...
1336 (skip a bit brother...)
1337 Er ... oh, yes ... and the Lord spake, saying "First shalt thou
1338take out the Holy Pin, then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less.
1339Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the count
1340shall be three. Four shalt thou not count neither count thou two, excepting
1341that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number
1342three, being the third number, be reached then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand
1343Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naught in my sight, shall
1344snuff it.
1345 -- Monty Python, "The Book of Armaments"
1346%
1347 "And what will you do when you grow up to be as big as me?"
1348asked the father of his little son.
1349 "Diet."
1350%
1351 "Anything else, sir?" asked the attentive bellhop, trying his best
1352to make the lady and gentleman comfortable in their penthouse suite in the
1353posh hotel.
1354 "No. No, thank you," replied the gentleman.
1355 "Anything for your wife, sir?" the bellhop asked.
1356 "Why, yes, young man," said the gentleman. "Would you bring me
1357a postcard?"
1358%
1359 "Anything else you wish to draw to my attention, Mr. Holmes ?"
1360 "The curious incident of the stable dog in the nightime."
1361 "But the dog did nothing in the nighttime."
1362 "That was the curious incident."
1363 -- A. Conan Doyle, "Silver Blaze"
1364%
1365 Approaching the gates of the monastery, Hakuin found Ken the Zen
1366preaching to a group of disciples.
1367 "Words..." Ken orated, "they are but an illusory veil obfuscating
1368the absolute reality of --"
1369 "Ken!" Hakuin interrupted. "Your fly is down!"
1370 Whereupon the Clear Light of Illumination exploded upon Ken, and he
1371vaporized.
1372 On the way to town, Hakuin was greeted by an itinerant monk imbued
1373with the spirit of the morning.
1374 "Ah," the monk sighed, a beatific smile wrinkling across his cheeks,
1375"Thou art That..."
1376 "Ah," Hakuin replied, pointing excitedly, "And Thou art Fat!"
1377 Whereupon the Clear Light of Illumination exploded upon the monk,
1378and he vaporized.
1379 Next, the Governor sought the advice of Hakuin, crying: "As our
1380enemies bear down upon us, how shall I, with such heartless and callow
1381soldiers as I am heir to, hope to withstand the impending onslaught?"
1382 "US?" snapped Hakuin.
1383 Whereupon the Clear Light of Illumination exploded upon the
1384Governor, and he vaporized.
1385 Then, a redneck went up to Hakuin and vaporized the old Master with
1386his shotgun. "Ha! Beat ya' to the punchline, ya' scrawny li'l geek!"
1387%
1388 As a general rule of thumb, never trust anybody who's been in therapy
1389for more than 15 percent of their life span. The words "I am sorry" and "I
1390am wrong" will have totally disappeared from their vocabulary. They will stab
1391you, shoot you, break things in your apartment, say horrible things to your
1392friends and family, and then justify this abhorrent behavior by saying:
1393 "Sure, I put your dog in the microwave. But I feel *better*
1394for doing it."
1395 -- Bruce Feirstein, "Nice Guys Sleep Alone"
1396%
1397 At a recent meeting in Snowmass, Colorado, a participant from
1398Los Angeles fainted from hyperoxygenation, and we had to hold his head
1399under the exhaust of a bus until he revived.
1400%
1401 Before he became a hermit, Zarathud was a young Priest, and
1402 took great delight in making fools of his opponents in front of
1403his followers.
1404 One day Zarathud took his students to a pleasant pasture and
1405there he confronted The Sacred Chao while She was contentedly grazing.
1406 "Tell me, you dumb beast," demanded the Priest in his
1407commanding voice, "why don't you do something worthwhile? What is your
1408Purpose in Life, anyway?"
1409 Munching the tasty grass, The Sacred Chao replied "MU". (The
1410Chinese ideogram for NO-THING.)
1411 Upon hearing this, absolutely nobody was enlightened.
1412 Primarily because nobody understood Chinese.
1413 -- Camden Benares, "Zen Without Zen Masters"
1414%
1415 better !pout !cry
1416 better watchout
1417 lpr why
1418 santa claus < north pole > town
1419
1420 cat /etc/passwd > list
1421 ncheck list
1422 ncheck list
1423 cat list | grep naughty > nogiftlist
1424 cat list | grep nice > giftlist
1425 santa claus < north pole > town
1426
1427 who | grep sleeping
1428 who | grep awake
1429 who | grep bad || good
1430 for (goodness sake) {
1431 be good
1432 }
1433%
1434 Brian Kernighan has an automobile which he helped design.
1435Unlike most automobiles, it has neither speedometer, nor gas guage, nor
1436any of the numerous idiot lights which plague the modern driver.
1437Rather, if the driver makes any mistake, a giant "?" lights up in the
1438center of the dashboard. "The experienced driver", he says, "will
1439usually know what's wrong."
1440%
1441 Bubba, Jim Bob, and Leroy were fishing out on the lake last November,
1442and, when Bubba tipped his head back to empty the Jim Beam, he fell out of the
1443boat into the lake. Jim Bob and Leroy pulled him back in, but as Bubba didn't
1444look too good, they started up the Evinrude and headed back to the pier.
1445 By the time they got there, Bubba was turning kind of blue, and his
1446teeth were chattering like all get out. Jim Bob said, "Leroy, go run up to
1447the pickup and get Doc Pritchard on the CB, and ask him what we should do".
1448 Doc Pritchard, after hearing a description of the case, said "Now,
1449Leroy, listen closely. Bubba is in great danger. He has hy-po-thermia. Now
1450what you need to do is get all them wet clothes off of Bubba, and take your
1451clothes off, and pile your clothes and jackets on top of him. Then you all
1452get under that pile, and hug up to Bubba real close so that you warm him up.
1453You understand me Leroy? You gotta warm Bubba up, or he'll die."
1454 Leroy and the Doc 10-4'ed each other, and Leroy came back to the
1455pier. "Wh-Wh-What'd th-th-the d-d-doc s-s-say L-L-Leroy?", Bubba chattered.
1456 "Bubba, Doc says you're gonna die."
1457%
1458 By the middle 1880's, practically all the roads except those in
1459the South, were of the present standard gauge. The southern roads were
1460still five feet between rails.
1461 It was decided to change the gauge of all southern roads to standard,
1462in one day. This remarkable piece of work was carried out on a Sunday in May
1463of 1886. For weeks beforehand, shops had been busy pressing wheels in on the
1464axles to the new and narrower gauge, to have a supply of rolling stock which
1465could run on the new track as soon as it was ready. Finally, on the day set,
1466great numbers of gangs of track layers went to work at dawn. Everywhere one
1467rail was loosened, moved in three and one-half inches, and spiked down in its
1468new position. By dark, trains from anywhere in the United States could operate
1469over the tracks in the South, and a free interchange of freight cars everywhere
1470was possible.
1471 -- Robert Henry, "Trains", 1957
1472%
1473 Carol's head ached as she trailed behind the unsmiling Calibrees
1474along the block of booths. She chirruped at Kennicott, "Let's be wild!
1475Let's ride on the merry-go-round and grab a gold ring!"
1476 Kennicott considered it, and mumbled to Calibree, "Think you folks
1477would like to stop and try a ride on the merry-go-round?"
1478 Calibree considered it, and mumbled to his wife, "Think you'd like
1479to stop and try a ride on the merry-go-round?"
1480 Mrs. Calibree smiled in a washed-out manner, and sighed, "Oh no,
1481I don't believe I care to much, but you folks go ahead and try it."
1482 Calibree stated to Kennicott, "No, I don't believe we care to a
1483whole lot, but you folks go ahead and try it."
1484 Kennicott summarized the whole case against wildness: "Let's try
1485it some other time, Carrie."
1486 She gave it up.
1487 -- Sinclair Lewis, "Main Street"
1488%
1489 Catching his children with their hands in the new, still wet, patio,
1490the father spanked them. His wife asked, "Don't you love your children?"
1491"In the abstract, yes, but not in the concrete."
1492%
1493 Chapter VIII
1494Due to the convergence of forces beyond his comprehension,
1495Salvatore Quanucci was suddenly squirted out of the universe
1496like a watermelon seed, and never heard from again.
1497%
1498 Concerning the war in Vietnam, Senator George Aiken of Vermont noted
1499in January, 1966, "I'm not very keen for doves or hawks. I think we need more
1500owls."
1501 -- Bill Adler, "The Washington Wits"
1502%
1503 COONDOG MEMORY
1504 (heard in Rutledge, Missouri, about eighteen years ago)
1505
1506Now, this dog is for sale, and she can not only follow a trail twice as
1507old as the average dog can, but she's got a pretty good memory to boot.
1508For instance, last week this old boy who lives down the road from me, and
1509is forever stinkmouthing my hounds, brought some city fellow around to
1510try out ol' Sis here. So I turned her out south of the house and she made
1511two or three big swings back and forth across the edge of the woods, set
1512back her head, bayed a couple of times, cut straight through the woods,
1513come to a little clearing, jumped about three foot straight up in the air,
1514run to the other side, and commenced to letting out a racket like she had
1515something treed. We went over there with our flashlights and shone them
1516up in the tree but couldn't catch no shine offa coon's eyes, and my
1517neighbor sorta indicated that ol' Sis might be a little crazy, `cause she
1518stood right to the tree and kept singing up into it. So I pulled off my
1519coat and climbed up into the branches, and sure enough, there was a coon
1520skeleton wedged in between a couple of branches about twenty foot up.
1521Now as I was saying, she can follow a pretty old trail, but this fellow
1522was still calling her crazy or touched `cause she had hopped up in the
1523air while she was crossing the clearing, until I reminded him that the
1524Hawkins' had a fence across there about five years back. Now, this dog
1525is for sale.
1526 -- News that stayed News: Ten Years of Coevolution Quarterly
1527%
1528 Cosmotronic Software Unlimited Inc. does not warrant that the
1529functions contained in the program will meet your requirements or that
1530the operation of the program will be uninterrupted or error-free.
1531 However, Cosmotronic Software Unlimited Inc. warrants the
1532diskette(s) on which the program is furnished to be of black color and
1533square shape under normal use for a period of ninety (90) days from the
1534date of purchase.
1535 NOTE: IN NO EVENT WILL COSMOTRONIC SOFTWARE UNLIMITED OR ITS
1536DISTRIBUTORS AND THEIR DEALERS BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY DAMAGES, INCLUDING
1537ANY LOST PROFIT, LOST SAVINGS, LOST PATIENCE OR OTHER INCIDENTAL OR
1538CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES.
1539 -- Horstmann Software Design, the "ChiWriter" user manual
1540%
1541 Dallas Cowboys Official Schedule
1542
1543 Sept 14 Pasadena Junior High
1544 Sept 21 Boy Scout Troop 049
1545 Sept 28 Blind Academy
1546 Sept 30 World War I Veterans
1547 Oct 5 Brownie Scout Troop 041
1548 Oct 12 Sugarcreek High Cheerleaders
1549 Oct 26 St. Thomas Boys Choir
1550 Nov 2 Texas City Vet Clinic
1551 Nov 9 Korean War Amputees
1552 Nov 15 VA Hospital Polio Patients
1553%
1554 "Darling," he breathed, "after making love I doubt if I'll
1555be able to get over you -- so would you mind answering the phone?"
1556%
1557 "Darling," she whispered, "will you still love me after we are
1558married?"
1559 He considered this for a moment and then replied, "I think so.
1560I've always been especially fond of married women."
1561%
1562 Deck us all with Boston Charlie,
1563 Walla Walla, Wash., an' Kalamazoo!
1564 Nora's freezin' on the trolley,
1565 Swaller dollar cauliflower, alleygaroo!
1566
1567 Don't we know archaic barrel,
1568 Lullaby Lilla Boy, Louisville Lou.
1569 Trolley Molly don't love Harold,
1570 Boola boola Pensacoola hullabaloo!
1571 -- Pogo, "Deck Us All With Boston Charlie"
1572%
1573 Does anyone know how to get chocolate syrup and honey out of a
1574white electric blanket? I'm afraid to wash it in the machine.
1575
1576Thanks, Kathy. (front desk, x17)
1577
1578p.s. Also, anyone ever used Noxema on friction burns?
1579 Or is Vaseline better?
1580%
1581 "Don't come back until you have him", the Tick-Tock Man said quietly,
1582sincerely, extremely dangerously.
1583 They used dogs. They used probes. They used cardio plate crossoffs.
1584They used teepers. They used bribery. They used stick tites. They used
1585intimidation. They used torment. They used torture. They used finks.
1586They used cops. They used search and seizure. They used fallaron. They
1587used betterment incentives. They used finger prints. They used the
1588bertillion system. They used cunning. They used guile. They used treachery.
1589They used Raoul-Mitgong but he wasn't much help. They used applied physics.
1590They used techniques of criminology. And what the hell, they caught him.
1591 -- Harlan Ellison, "Repent, Harlequin, said the Tick-Tock Man"
1592%
1593 Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes of Harvard Medical School inhaled ether
1594at a time when it was popularly supposed to produce such mystical or
1595"mind-expanding" experiences, much as LSD is supposed to produce such
1596experiences today. Here is his account of what happened:
1597 "I once inhaled a pretty full dose of ether, with the determination
1598to put on record, at the earliest moment of regaining consciousness, the
1599thought I should find uppermost in my mind. The mighty music of the triumphal
1600march into nothingness reverberated through my brain, and filled me with a
1601sense of infinite possibilities, which made me an archangel for a moment.
1602The veil of eternity was lifted. The one great truth which underlies all
1603human experience and is the key to all the mysteries that philosophy has
1604sought in vain to solve, flashed upon me in a sudden revelation. Henceforth
1605all was clear: a few words had lifted my intelligence to the level of the
1606knowledge of the cherubim. As my natural condition returned, I remembered
1607my resolution; and, staggering to my desk, I wrote, in ill-shaped, straggling
1608characters, the all-embracing truth still glimmering in my consciousness.
1609The words were these (children may smile; the wise will ponder):
1610`A strong smell of turpentine prevails throughout.'"
1611 -- The Consumers Union Report: Licit & Illicit Drugs
1612%
1613 During a fight, a husband threw a bowl of Jello at his wife. She had
1614him arrested for carrying a congealed weapon.
1615 In another fight, the wife decked him with a heavy glass pitcher.
1616She's a women who conks to stupor.
1617 Upon reading a story about a man who throttled his mother-in-law, a
1618man commented, "Sounds to me like a practical choker."
1619 It's not the initial skirt length, it's the upcreep.
1620 It's the theory of Jess Birnbaum, of Time magazine, that women with
1621bad legs should stick to long skirts because they cover a multitude of shins.
1622%
1623 During a grouse hunt in North Carolina two intrepid sportsmen were
1624blasting away at a clump of trees near a stone wall. Suddenly a red-face
1625country squire popped his head over the wall and shouted, "Hey, you almost
1626hit my wife."
1627 "Did I?" cried one hunter, aghast. "Terribly sorry. Have a shot
1628at mine, over there."
1629%
1630 Eugene d'Albert, a noted German composer, was married six times.
1631At an evening reception which he attended with his fifth wife shortly
1632after their wedding, he presented the lady to a friend who said politely,
1633"Congratulations, Herr d'Albert; you have rarely introduced me to so
1634charming a wife."
1635%
1636 Everything is farther away than it used to be. It is even twice as
1637far to the corner and they have added a hill. I have given up running for
1638the bus; it leaves earlier than it used to.
1639 It seems to me they are making the stairs steeper than in the old
1640days. And have you noticed the smaller print they use in the newspapers?
1641 There is no sense in asking anyone to read aloud anymore, as everybody
1642speaks in such a low voice I can hardly hear them.
1643 The material in dresses is so skimpy now, especially around the hips
1644and waist, that it is almost impossible to reach one's shoelaces. And the
1645sizes don't run the way they used to. The 12's and 14's are so much smaller.
1646 Even people are changing. They are so much younger than they used to
1647be when I was their age. On the other hand people my age are so much older
1648than I am.
1649 I ran into an old classmate the other day and she has aged so much
1650that she didn't recognize me.
1651 I got to thinking about the poor dear while I was combing my hair
1652this morning and in so doing I glanced at my own reflection. Really now,
1653they don't even make good mirrors like they used to.
1654 Sandy Frazier, "I Have Noticed"
1655%
1656 Excellence is THE trend of the '80s. Walk into any shopping
1657mall bookstore, go to the rack where they keep the best-sellers such as
1658"Garfield Gets Spayed", and you'll see a half-dozen books telling you
1659how to be excellent: "In Search of Excellence", "Finding Excellence",
1660"Grasping Hold of Excellence", "Where to Hide Your Excellence at Night
1661So the Cleaning Personnel Don't Steal It", etc.
1662 -- Dave Barry, "In Search of Excellence"
1663%
1664 Exxon's 'Universe of Energy' tends to the peculiar rather than the
1665humorous ... After [an incomprehensible film montage about wind and sun and
1666rain and strip mines and] two or three minutes of mechanical confusion, the
1667seats locomote through a short tunnel filled with clock-work dinosaurs.
1668The dinosaurs are depicted without accuracy and too close to your face.
1669 "One of the few real novelties at Epcot is the use of smell to
1670aggravate illusions. Of course, no one knows what dinosaurs smelled like,
1671but Exxon has decided they smelled bad.
1672 "At the other end of Dino Ditch ... there's a final, very addled
1673message about facing challengehood tomorrow-wise. I dozed off during this,
1674but the import seems to be that dinosaurs don't have anything to do with
1675energy policy and neither do you."
1676 -- P.J. O'Rourke, "Holidays in Hell"
1677%
1678 For example, in Year 1 that useless letter 'c' would be dropped to be
1679replased either by 'k' or 's', and likewise 'x' would no longer be part of the
1680alphabet. The only kase in which 'c' would be retained would be the 'ch'
1681formation, which will be dealt with later. Year 2 might reform 'w' spelling,
1682so that 'which' and 'one' would take the same konsonant, wile Year 3 might
1683well abolish 'y' replasing it with 'i' and Iear 4 might fiks the 'g-j'
1684anomali wonse and for all.
1685 Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear with
1686Iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and Iears 6-12 or so
1687modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants. Bai
1688Iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi ridandant letez
1689'c', 'y' and 'x' - bai now jast a memori in the maindz ov ould doderez - tu
1690riplais 'ch', 'sh', and 'th' rispektivli.
1691 Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud hev a
1692lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.
1693%
1694 "Found it," the Mouse replied rather crossly:
1695"of course you know what 'it' means."
1696
1697 "I know what 'it' means well enough, when I find a thing,"
1698said the Duck: "it's generally a frog or a worm.
1699
1700The question is, what did the archbishop find?"
1701%
1702 Four Oxford dons were taking their evening walk together and as
1703usual, were engaged in casual but learned conversation. On this particular
1704evening, their conversation was about the names given to groups of animals,
1705such as a "pride of lions" or a "gaggle of geese."
1706 One of the professors noticed a group of prostitutes down the block,
1707and posed the question, "What name would be given to that group?" The four
1708fell into silence for a moment, as they pondered the possibilities...
1709 At last, one spoke: "How about 'a Jam of Tarts'?" The others nodded
1710in acknowledgement as they continued to consider the problem. A second
1711professor spoke: "I'd suggest 'an Essay of Trollops.'" Again, the others
1712nodded. A third spoke: "I propose 'a Flourish of Strumpets.'"
1713 They continued their walk in silence, until the first professor
1714remarked to the remaining professor, who was the most senior and learned of
1715the four, "You haven't suggested a name for our ladies. What are your
1716thoughts?"
1717 Replied the fourth professor, "'An Anthology of Prose.'"
1718%
1719 Fred noticed his roommate had a black eye upon returning from a dance.
1720"What happened?" "I was struck by the beauty of the place."
1721 A pushy romeo asked a gorgeous elevator operator, "Don't all these
1722stops and starts get you pretty worn out?" "It isn't the stops and starts
1723that get on my nerves, it's the jerks."
1724 An airplane pilot got engaged to two very pretty women at the same
1725time. One was named Edith; the other named Kate. They met, discovered they
1726had the same fiancee, and told him. "Get out of our lives you rascal. We'll
1727teach you that you can't have your Kate and Edith, too."
1728 A domineering man married a mere wisp of a girl. He came back from
1729his honeymoon a chastened man. He'd become aware of the will of the wisp.
1730 A young husband with an inferiority complex insisted he was just a
1731little pebble on the beach. The marriage counselor told him, "If you wish to
1732save your marriage, you'd better be a little boulder."
1733%
1734 Friends were surprised, indeed, when Frank and Jennifer broke their
1735engagement, but Frank had a ready explanation: "Would you marry someone who
1736was habitually unfaithful, who lied at every turn, who was selfish and lazy
1737and sarcastic?"
1738 "Of course not," said a sympathetic friend.
1739 "Well," retorted Frank, "neither would Jennifer."
1740%
1741 "Gee, Mudhead, everyone at Morse Science High has an
1742extracurricular activity except you."
1743 "Well, gee, doesn't Louise count?"
1744 "Only to ten, Mudhead."
1745%
1746 "Gentlemen of the jury," said the defense attorney, now beginning
1747to warm to his summation, "the real question here before you is, shall this
1748beautiful young woman be forced to languish away her loveliest years in a
1749dark prison cell? Or shall she be set free to return to her cozy little
1750apartment at 4134 Mountain Ave. -- there to spend her lonely, loveless hours
1751in her boudoir, lying beside her little Princess phone, 962-7873?"
1752%
1753 God decided to take the devil to court and settle their
1754differences once and for all.
1755 When Satan heard of this, he grinned and said, "And just
1756where do you think you're going to find a lawyer?"
1757%
1758 Graduating seniors, parents and friends...
1759 Let me begin by reassuring you that my remarks today will stand up
1760to the most stringent requirements of the new appropriateness.
1761 The intra-college sensitivity advisory committee has vetted the
1762text of even trace amounts of subconscious racism, sexism and classism.
1763 Moreover, a faculty panel of deconstructionists have reconfigured
1764the rhetorical components within a post-structuralist framework, so as to
1765expunge any offensive elements of western rationalism and linear logic.
1766 Finally, all references flowing from a white, male, eurocentric
1767perspective have been eliminated, as have any other ruminations deemed
1768denigrating to the political consensus of the moment.
1769
1770 Thank you and good luck.
1771 -- Doonesbury, the University Chancellor's graduation speech.
1772%
1773 Hack placidly amidst the noisy printers and remember what prizes there
1774may be in Science. As fast as possible get a good terminal on a good system.
1775Enter your data clearly but always encrypt your results. And listen to others,
1776even the dull and ignorant, for they may be your customers. Avoid loud and
1777aggressive persons, for they are sales reps.
1778 If you compare your outputs with those of others, you may be surprised,
1779for always there will be greater and lesser numbers than you have crunched.
1780Keep others interested in your career, and try not to fumble; it can be a real
1781hassle and could change your fortunes in time.
1782 Exercise system control in your experiments, for the world is full of
1783bugs. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive
1784for linearity and everywhere papers are full of approximations. Strive for
1785proportionality. Especially, do not faint when it occurs. Neither be cyclical
1786about results; for in the face of all data analysis it is sure to be noticed.
1787 Take with a grain of salt the anomalous data points. Gracefully pass
1788them on to the youth at the next desk. Nurture some mutual funds to shield
1789you in times of sudden layoffs. But do not distress yourself with imaginings
1790-- the real bugs are enough to screw you badly. Murphy's Law runs the
1791Universe -- and whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt <Curl>B*n dS = 0.
1792 Therefore, grab for a piece of the pie, with whatever proposals you
1793can conceive of to try. With all the crashed disks, skewed data, and broken
1794line printers, you can still have a beautiful secretary. Be linear. Strive
1795to stay employed.
1796 -- Technolorata, "Analog"
1797%
1798 "Haig, in congressional hearings before his confirmatory, paradoxed
1799his audiencers by abnormaling his responds so that verbs were nouned, nouns
1800verbed, and adjectives adverbised. He techniqued a new way to vocabulary his
1801thoughts so as to informationally uncertain anybody listening about what he
1802had actually implicationed.
1803 "If that is how General Haig wants to nervous breakdown the Russian
1804leadership, he may be shrewding his way to the biggest diplomatic invent
1805since Clausewitz. Unless, that is, he schizophrenes his allies first."
1806 -- The Guardian
1807%
1808 Hardware met Software on the road to Changtse. Software said: "You
1809are the Yin and I am the Yang. If we travel together we will become famous
1810and earn vast sums of money." And so the pair set forth together, thinking
1811to conquer the world.
1812 Presently, they met Firmware, who was dressed in tattered rags, and
1813hobbled along propped on a thorny stick. Firmware said to them: "The Tao
1814lies beyond Yin and Yang. It is silent and still as a pool of water. It does
1815not seek fame, therefore nobody knows its presence. It does not seeks fortune,
1816for it is complete within itself. It exists beyond space and time."
1817 Software and Hardware, ashamed, returned to their homes.
1818 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
1819%
1820 Harry, a golfing enthusiast if there ever was one, arrived home
1821from the club to an irate, ranting wife.
1822 "I'm leaving you, Harry," his wife announced bitterly. "You
1823promised me faithfully that you'd be back before six and here it is almost
1824nine. It just can't take that long to play 18 holes of golf."
1825 "Honey, wait," said Harry. "Let me explain. I know what I promised
1826you, but I have a very good reason for being late. Fred and I tee'd off
1827right on time and everything was find for the first three holes. Then, on
1828the fourth tee Fred had a stroke. I ran back to the clubhouse but couldn't
1829find a doctor. And, by the time I got back to Fred, he was dead. So, for
1830the next 15 holes, it was hit the ball, drag Fred, hit the ball, drag Fred...
1831%
1832 Harry constantly irritated his friends with his eternal optimism.
1833No matter how bad the situation, he would always say, "Well, it could have
1834been worse."
1835 To cure him of his annoying habit, his friends decided to invent a
1836situation so completely black, so dreadful, that even Harry could find no
1837hope in it. Approaching him at the club bar one day, one of them said,
1838"Harry! Did you hear what happened to George? He came home last night,
1839found his wife in bed with another man, shot them both, and then turned
1840the gun on himself!"
1841 "Terrible," said Harry. "But it could have been worse."
1842 "How in hell," demanded his dumfounded friend, "could it possibly
1843have been worse?"
1844 "Well," said Harry, "if it had happened the night before, I'd be
1845dead right now."
1846%
1847 He had been bitten by a dog, but didn't give it much thought
1848until he noticed that the wound was taking a remarkably long time to
1849heal. Finally, he consulted a doctor who took one look at it and
1850ordered the dog brought in. Just as he had suspected, the dog had
1851rabies. Since it was too late to give the patient serum, the doctor
1852felt he had to prepare him for the worst. The poor man sat down at the
1853doctor's desk and began to write. His physician tried to comfort him.
1854"Perhaps it won't be so bad," he said. "You needn't make out your will
1855right now."
1856 "I'm not making out any will," relied the man. "I'm just writing
1857out a list of people I'm going to bite!"
1858%
1859 ...He who laughs does not believe in what he laughs at, but neither
1860does he hate it. Therefore, laughing at evil means not preparing oneself to
1861combat it, and laughing at good means denying the power through which good is
1862self-propagating.
1863 -- Umberto Eco, "The Name of the Rose"
1864%
1865 "Heard you were moving your piano, so I came over to help."
1866 "Thanks. Got it upstairs already."
1867 "Do it alone?"
1868 "Nope. Hitched the cat to it."
1869 "How would that help?"
1870 "Used a whip."
1871%
1872 "Hello, Mrs. Premise!"
1873 "Oh, hello, Mrs. Conclusion! Busy day?"
1874 "Busy? I just spent four hours burying the cat."
1875 "Four hours to bury a cat!?"
1876 "Yes, he wouldn't keep still: wrigglin' about, 'owlin'..."
1877 "Oh, it's not dead then."
1878 "Oh no, no, but it's not at all a well cat, and as we're
1879goin' away for a fortnight I thought I'd better bury it just to be
1880on the safe side."
1881 "Quite right. You don't want to come back from Sorrento
1882to a dead cat, do you?"
1883 -- Monty Python
1884%
1885 Here is the fact of the week, maybe even the fact of the month.
1886According to probably reliable sources, the Coca-Cola people are experiencing
1887severe marketing anxiety in China.
1888 The words "Coca-Cola" translate into Chinese as either (depending
1889on the inflection) "wax-fattened mare" or "bite the wax tadpole".
1890 Bite the wax tadpole.
1891 There is a sort of rough justice, is there not?
1892 The trouble with this fact, as lovely as it is, is that it's hard
1893to get a whole column out of it. I'd like to teach the world to bite a wax
1894tadpole. Coke -- it's the real wax-fattened mare. Not bad, but broad
1895satiric vistas do not open up.
1896 -- John Carrol, The San Francisco Chronicle
1897%
1898 Here is the problem: for many years, the Supreme Court wrestled
1899with the issue of pornography, until finally Associate Justice John
1900Paul Stevens came up with the famous quotation about how he couldn't
1901define pornography, but he knew it when he saw it. So for a while, the
1902court's policy was to have all the suspected pornography trucked to
1903Justice Stevens' house, where he would look it over. "Nope, this isn't
1904it," he'd say. "Bring some more." This went on until one morning when
1905his housekeeper found him trapped in the recreation room under an
1906enormous mound of rubberized implements, and the court had to issue a
1907ruling stating that it didn't know what the hell pornography was except
1908that it was illegal and everybody should stop badgering the court about
1909it because the court was going to take a nap.
1910 -- Dave Barry, "Pornography"
1911%
1912 "How did you spend the weekend?" asked the pretty brunette secretary
1913of her blonde companion.
1914 "Fishing through the ice," she replied.
1915 "Fishing through the ice? Whatever for?"
1916 "Olives."
1917%
1918 "How many people work here?"
1919 "Oh, about half."
1920%
1921 How many seconds are there in a year? If I tell you there are
19223.155 x 10^7, you won't even try to remember it. On the other hand, who
1923could forget that, to within half a percent, pi seconds is a nanocentury.
1924 -- Tom Duff, Bell Labs
1925%
1926 "How would I know if I believe in love at first sight?" the sexy
1927social climber said to her roommate. "I mean, I've never seen a Porsche
1928full of money before."
1929%
1930 "How'd you get that flat?"
1931 "Ran over a bottle."
1932 "Didn't you see it?"
1933 "Damn kid had it under his coat."
1934%
1935 "I believe you have the wrong number," said the old gentleman into
1936the phone. "You'll have to call the weather bureau for that information."
1937 "Who was that?" his young wife asked.
1938 "Some guy wanting to know if the coast was clear."
1939%
1940 "I cannot read the fiery letters," said Frito Bugger in a
1941quavering voice.
1942 "No," said GoodGulf, "but I can. The letters are Elvish, of
1943course, of an ancient mode, but the language is that of Mordor, which
1944I will not utter here. They are lines of a verse long known in
1945Elven-lore:
1946
1947 "This Ring, no other, is made by the elves,
1948 Who'd pawn their own mother to grab it themselves.
1949 Ruler of creeper, mortal, and scallop,
1950 This is a sleeper that packs quite a wallop.
1951 The Power almighty rests in this Lone Ring.
1952 The Power, alrighty, for doing your Own Thing.
1953 If broken or busted, it cannot be remade.
1954 If found, send to Sorhed (with postage prepaid)."
1955 -- Harvard Lampoon, "Bored of the Rings"
1956%
1957 I did some heavy research so as to be prepared for "Mommy, why is
1958the sky blue?"
1959 HE asked me about black holes in space.
1960 (There's a hole *where*?)
1961
1962 I boned up to be ready for, "Why is the grass green?"
1963 HE wanted to discuss nature's food chains.
1964 (Well, let's see, there's ShopRite, Pathmark...)
1965
1966 I talked about Choo-Choo trains.
1967 HE talked internal combustion engines.
1968 (The INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINE said, "I think I can, I think I can.")
1969
1970 I was delighted with the video game craze, thinking we could compete
1971as equals.
1972 HE described the complexities of the microchips required to create
1973the graphics.
1974
1975 Then puberty struck. Ah, adolescence.
1976 HE said, "Mom, I just don't understand women."
1977 (Gotcha!)
1978 -- Betty LiBrizzi, "The Care and Feeding of a Gifted Child"
1979%
1980 I disapprove of the F-word, not because it's dirty, but because we
1981use it as a substitute for thoughtful insults, and it frequently leads to
1982violence. What we ought to do, when we anger each other, say, in traffic,
1983is exchange phone numbers, so that later on, when we've had time to think
1984of witty and learned insults or look them up in the library, we could call
1985each other up:
1986 You: Hello? Bob?
1987 Bob: Yes?
1988 You: This is Ed. Remember? The person whose parking space you
1989 took last Thursday? Outside of Sears?
1990 Bob: Oh yes! Sure! How are you, Ed?
1991 You: Fine, thanks. Listen, Bob, the reason I'm calling is:
1992 "Madam, you may be drunk, but I am ugly, and ..." No, wait.
1993 I mean: "you may be ugly, but I am Winston Churchill
1994 and ..." No, wait. (Sound of reference book thudding onto
1995 the floor.) S-word. Excuse me. Look, Bob, I'm going to
1996 have to get back to you.
1997 Bob: Fine.
1998 -- Dave Barry
1999%
2000 "I don't know what you mean by 'glory'," Alice said.
2001 Humpty Dumpty smiled contemptuously. "Of course you don't --
2002till I tell you. I meant 'there's a nice knock-down argument for you!'"
2003 "But glory doesn't mean 'a nice knock-down argument'," Alice
2004objected.
2005 "When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful
2006tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less."
2007 "The question is," said Alice, "whether you can make words mean
2008so many different things."
2009 "The question is," said Humpty Dumpty, "which is to be master --
2010that's all."
2011%
2012 I for one cannot protest the recent M.T.A. fare hike and the
2013accompanying promises that this would in no way improve service. For
2014the transit system, as it now operates, has hidden advantages that
2015can't be measured in monetary terms.
2016 Personally, I feel that it is well worth 75 cents or even $1 to
2017have that unimpeachable excuse whenever I am late to anything: "I came
2018by subway." Those four words have such magic in them that if Godot
2019should someday show up and mumble them, any audience would instantly
2020understand his long delay.
2021%
2022 "I have examined Bogota," he said, "and the case is clearer to me.
2023I think very probably he might be cured."
2024 "That is what I have always hoped," said old Yacob.
2025 "His brain is affected," said the blind doctor.
2026 The elders murmured assent.
2027 "Now, what affects it?"
2028 "Ah!" said old Yacob.
2029 "This," said the doctor, answering his own question. "Those queer
2030things that are called the eyes, and which exist to make an agreeable soft
2031depression in the face, are diseased, in the case of Bogota, in such a way
2032as to affect his brain. They are greatly distended, he has eyelashes, and
2033his eyelids move, and consequently his brain is in a state of constant
2034irritation and distraction."
2035 "Yes?" said old Yacob. "Yes?"
2036 "And I think I may say with reasonable certainty that, in order
2037to cure him completely, all that we need do is a simple and easy surgical
2038operation - namely, to remove those irritant bodies."
2039 "And then he will be sane?"
2040 "Then he will be perfectly sane, and a quite admirable citizen."
2041 "Thank heaven for science!" said old Yacob.
2042 -- H.G. Wells, "The Country of the Blind"
2043%
2044 I made it a rule to forbear all direct contradictions to the sentiments
2045of others, and all positive assertion of my own. I even forbade myself the use
2046of every word or expression in the language that imported a fixed opinion, such
2047as "certainly", "undoubtedly", etc. I adopted instead of them "I conceive",
2048"I apprehend", or "I imagine" a thing to be so or so; or "so it appears to me
2049at present".
2050 When another asserted something that I thought an error, I denied
2051myself the pleasure of contradicting him abruptly, and of showing him
2052immediately some absurdity in his proposition. In answering I began by
2053observing that in certain cases or circumstances his opinion would be right,
2054but in the present case there appeared or seemed to me some difference, etc.
2055 I soon found the advantage of this change in my manner; the
2056conversations I engaged in went on more pleasantly. The modest way in which I
2057proposed my opinions procured them a readier reception and less contradiction.
2058I had less mortification when I was found to be in the wrong, and I more easily
2059prevailed with others to give up their mistakes and join with me when I
2060happened to be in the right.
2061 -- Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
2062%
2063 I managed to say, "Sorry," and no more. I knew that he disliked
2064me to cry.
2065 This time he said, watching me, "On some occasions it is better
2066to weep."
2067 I put my head down on the table and sobbed, "If only she could come
2068back; I would be nice."
2069 Francis said, "You gave her great pleasure always."
2070 "Oh, not enough."
2071 "Nobody can give anybody enough."
2072 "Not ever?"
2073 "No, not ever. But one must go on trying."
2074 "And doesn't one ever value people until they are gone?"
2075 "Rarely," said Francis. I went on weeping; I saw how little I had
2076valued him; how little I had valued anything that was mine.
2077 -- Pamela Frankau, "The Duchess and the Smugs"
2078%
2079 I paid a visit to my local precinct in Greenwich Village and
2080asked a sergeant to show me some rape statistics. He politely obliged.
2081That month there had been thirty-five rape complaints, an advance of ten
2082over the same month for the previous year. The precinct had made two
2083arrests.
2084 "Not a very impressive record," I offered.
2085 "Don't worry about it," the sergeant assured me. "You know what
2086these complaints represent?"
2087 "What do they represent?" I asked.
2088 "Prostitutes who didn't get their money," he said firmly,
2089closing the book.
2090 -- Susan Brownmiller, "Against Our Will"
2091%
2092 [I plan] to see, hear, touch, and destroy everything in my path,
2093including beets, rutabagas, and most random vegetables, but excluding yams,
2094as I am absolutely terrified of yams...
2095 Actually, I think my fear of yams began in my early youth, when many
2096of my young comrades pelted me with same for singing songs of far-off lands
2097and deep blue seas in a language closely resembling that of the common sow.
2098My psychosis was further impressed into my soul as I reached adolescence,
2099when, while skipping through a field of yams, light-heartedly tossing flowers
2100into the stratosphere, a great yam-picking machine tore through the fields,
2101pursuing me to the edge of the great plantation, where I escaped by diving
2102into a great ditch filled with a mixture of water and pig manure, which may
2103explain my tendency to scream, "Here come the Martians! Hide the eggs!" every
2104time I have pork. But I digress. The fact remains that I cannot rationally
2105deal with yams, and pigs are terrible conversationalists.
2106%
2107 I went into a bar feeling a little depressed, the bartender said,
2108"What'll you have, Bud"?
2109 I said," I don't know, surprise me".
2110 So he showed me a nude picture of my wife.
2111 -- Rodney Dangerfield
2112%
2113 If I kiss you, that is an psychological interaction.
2114 On the other hand, if I hit you over the head with a brick,
2115that is also a psychological interaction.
2116 The difference is that one is friendly and the other is not
2117so friendly.
2118 The crucial point is if you can tell which is which.
2119 -- Dolph Sharp, "I'm O.K., You're Not So Hot"
2120%
2121 If the tao is great, then the operating system is great. If the
2122operating system is great, then the compiler is great. If the compiler
2123is great, then the application is great. If the application is great, then
2124the user is pleased and there is harmony in the world.
2125 The tao gave birth to machine language. Machine language gave birth
2126to the assembler.
2127 The assembler gave birth to the compiler. Now there are ten thousand
2128languages.
2129 Each language has its purpose, however humble. Each language
2130expresses the yin and yang of software. Each language has its place within
2131the tao.
2132 But do not program in Cobol or Fortran if you can help it.
2133%
2134 If you do your best the rest of the way, that takes care of
2135everything. When we get to October 2, we'll add up the wins, and then
2136we'll either all go into the playoffs, or we'll all go home and play golf.
2137 Both those things sound pretty good to me.
2138 -- Sparky Anderson
2139%
2140 If you rap your knuckles against a window jamb or door, if you
2141brush your leg against a bed or desk, if you catch your foot in a curled-
2142up corner of a rug, or strike a toe against a desk or chair, go back and
2143repeat the sequence.
2144 You will find yourself surprised how far off course you were to
2145hit that window jamb, that door, that chair. Get back on course and do it
2146again. How can you pilot a spacecraft if you can't find your way around
2147your own apartment?
2148 -- William S. Burroughs
2149%
2150 "I'll tell you what I know, then," he decided. "The pin I'm wearing
2151means I'm a member of the IA. That's Inamorati Anonymous. An inamorato is
2152somebody in love. That's the worst addiction of all."
2153 "Somebody is about to fall in love," Oedipa said, "you go sit with
2154them, or something?"
2155 "Right. The whole idea is to get where you don't need it. I was
2156lucky. I kicked it young. But there are sixty-year-old men, believe it or
2157not, and women even older, who might wake up in the night screaming."
2158 "You hold meetings, then, like the AA?"
2159 "No, of course not. You get a phone number, an answering service
2160you can call. Nobody knows anybody else's name; just the number in case
2161it gets so bad you can't handle it alone. We're isolates, Arnold. Meetings
2162would destroy the whole point of it."
2163 -- Thomas Pynchon, "The Crying of Lot 49"
2164%
2165 "I'm looking for adventure, excitement, beautiful women," cried the
2166young man to his father as he prepared to leave home. "Don't try to stop me.
2167I'm on my way."
2168 "Who's trying to stop you?" shouted the father. "Take me along!"
2169%
2170 I'm sure that VMS is completely documented, I just haven't found the
2171right manual yet. I've been working my way through the manuals in the document
2172library and I'm half way through the second cabnet, (3 shelves to go), so I
2173should find what I'm looking for by mid May. I hope I can remember what it
2174was by the time I find it.
2175 I had this idea for a new horror film, "VMS Manuals from Hell" or maybe
2176"The Paper Chase : IBM vs. DEC". It's based on Hitchcock's "The Birds", except
2177that it's centered around a programmer who is attacked by a swarm of binder
2178pages with an index number and the single line "This page intentionally left
2179blank."
2180 -- Alex Crain
2181%
2182 In a forest a fox bumps into a little rabbit, and says, "Hi,
2183Junior, what are you up to?"
2184 "I'm writing a dissertation on how rabbits eat foxes," said the
2185rabbit.
2186 "Come now, friend rabbit, you know that's impossible! No one
2187will publish such rubbish!"
2188 "Well, follow me and I'll show you."
2189 They both go into the rabbit's dwelling and after a while the
2190rabbit emerges with a satisfied expression on his face. Comes along a
2191wolf. "Hello, little buddy, what are we doing these days?"
2192 "I'm writing the 2'nd chapter of my thesis, on how rabbits devour
2193wolves."
2194 "Are you crazy? Where's your academic honesty?"
2195 "Come with me and I'll show you."
2196 As before, the rabbit comes out with a satisfied look on his face
2197and a diploma in his paw. Finally, the camera pans into the rabbit's cave
2198and, as everybody should have guessed by now, we see a mean-looking, huge
2199lion, sitting, picking his teeth and belching, next to some furry, bloody
2200remnants of the wolf and the fox.
2201
2202 The moral: It's not the contents of your thesis that are
2203important -- it's your PhD advisor that really counts.
2204%
2205 In "King Henry VI, Part II," Shakespeare has Dick Butcher suggest to
2206his fellow anti-establishment rabble-rousers, "The first thing we do, let's
2207kill all the lawyers." That action may be extreme but a similar sentiment
2208was expressed by Thomas K. Connellan, president of The Management Group, Inc.
2209Speaking to business executives in Chicago and quoted in Automotive News,
2210Connellan attributed a measure of America's falling productivity to an excess
2211of attorneys and accountants, and a dearth of production experts. Lawyers
2212and accountants "do not make the economic pie any bigger; they only figure
2213out how the pie gets divided. Neither profession provides any added value
2214to product."
2215 According to Connellan, the highly productive Japanese society has
221610 lawyers and 30 accountants per 100,000 population. The U.S. has 200
2217lawyers and 700 accountants. This suggests that "the U.S. proportion of
2218pie-bakers and pie-dividers is way out of whack." Could Dick Butcher have
2219been an efficiency expert?
2220 -- Motor Trend, May 1983
2221%
2222 In the beginning, God created the Earth and he said, "Let there be
2223mud."
2224 And there was mud.
2225 And God said, "Let Us make living creatures out of mud, so the mud
2226can see what we have done."
2227 And God created every living creature that now moveth, and one was
2228man. Mud-as-man alone could speak.
2229 "What is the purpose of all this?" man asked politely.
2230 "Everything must have a purpose?" asked God.
2231 "Certainly," said man.
2232 "Then I leave it to you to think of one for all of this," said God.
2233 And He went away.
2234 -- Kurt Vonnegut, Between Time and Timbuktu"
2235%
2236 In the beginning there was data. The data was without form and
2237null, and darkness was upon the face of the console; and the Spirit of
2238IBM was moving over the face of the market. And DEC said, "Let there
2239be registers"; and there were registers. And DEC saw that they
2240carried; and DEC separated the data from the instructions. DEC called
2241the data Stack, and the instructions they called Code. And there was
2242evening and there was morning, one interrupt.
2243 -- Rico Tudor, "The Story of Creation or, The Myth of Urk"
2244%
2245 In the beginning there was only one kind of Mathematician, created by
2246the Great Mathematical Spirit form the Book: the Topologist. And they grew to
2247large numbers and prospered.
2248 One day they looked up in the heavens and desired to reach up as far
2249as the eye could see. So they set out in building a Mathematical edifice that
2250was to reach up as far as "up" went. Further and further up they went ...
2251until one night the edifice collapsed under the weight of paradox.
2252 The following morning saw only rubble where there once was a huge
2253structure reaching to the heavens. One by one, the Mathematicians climbed
2254out from under the rubble. It was a miracle that nobody was killed; but when
2255they began to speak to one another, SUPRISE of all suprises! they could not
2256understand each other. They all spoke different languages. They all fought
2257amongst themselves and each went about their own way. To this day the
2258Topologists remain the original Mathematicians.
2259 -- The Story of Babel
2260%
2261 In the beginning was the Tao. The Tao gave birth to Space and Time.
2262Therefore, Space and Time are the Yin and Yang of programming.
2263
2264 Programmers that do not comprehend the Tao are always running out of
2265time and space for their programs. Programmers that comprehend the Tao always
2266have enough time and space to accomplish their goals.
2267 How could it be otherwise?
2268 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
2269%
2270 In the days when Sussman was a novice Minsky once came to him as he
2271sat hacking at the PDP-6.
2272 "What are you doing?", asked Minsky.
2273 "I am training a randomly wired neural net to play Tic-Tac-Toe."
2274 "Why is the net wired randomly?", inquired Minsky.
2275 "I do not want it to have any preconceptions of how to play".
2276 At this Minsky shut his eyes, and Sussman asked his teacher "Why do
2277you close your eyes?"
2278 "So that the room will be empty."
2279 At that moment, Sussman was enlightened.
2280%
2281 In the east there is a shark which is larger than all other fish. It
2282changes into a bird whose winds are like clouds filling the sky. When this
2283bird moves across the land, it brings a message from Corporate Headquarters.
2284This message it drops into the midst of the program mers, like a seagull
2285making its mark upon the beach. Then the bird mounts on the wind and, with
2286the blue sky at its back, returns home.
2287 The novice programmer stares in wonder at the bird, for he understands
2288it not. The average programmer dreads the coming of the bird, for he fears
2289its message. The master programmer continues to work at his terminal, for he
2290does not know that the bird has come and gone.
2291 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
2292%
2293 In the morning, laughing, happy fish heads
2294 In the evening, floating in the soup.
2295(chorus):
2296Fish heads, fish heads, roly-poly fish heads;
2297Fish heads, fish heads, eat them up. Yum!
2298 You can ask them anything you want to.
2299 They won't answer; they can't talk.
2300(chorus):
2301 I took a fish head out to see a movie,
2302 Didn't have to pay to get it in.
2303(chorus):
2304 They can't play baseball; they don't wear sweaters;
2305 They aren't good dancers; they can't play drums.
2306(chorus):
2307 Roly-poly fish heads are NEVER seen drinking cappucino in
2308 Italian restaurants with Oriental women.
2309(chorus):
2310 Fishy!
2311(chorus):
2312 -- Fish Heads
2313%
2314 "In this replacement Earth we're building they've given me Africa
2315to do and of course I'm doing it with all fjords again because I happen to
2316like them, and I'm old-fashioned enough to think that they give a lovely
2317baroque feel to a continent. And they tell me it's not equatorial enough.
2318Equatorial!" He gave a hollow laugh. "What does it matter? Science has
2319achieved some wonderful things, of course, but I'd far rather be happy than
2320right any day."
2321 "And are you?"
2322 "No. That's where it all falls down, of course."
2323 "Pity," said Arthur with sympathy. "It sounded like quite a good
2324life-style otherwise."
2325 -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
2326%
2327 In what can only be described as a surprise move, God has officially
2328announced His candidacy for the U.S. presidency. During His press conference
2329today, the first in over 4000 years, He is quoted as saying, "I think I have
2330a chance for the White House if I can just get my campaign pulled together
2331in time. I'd like to get this country turned around; I mean REALLY turned
2332around! Let's put Florida up north for awhile, and let's get rid of all
2333those annoying mountains and rivers. I never could stand them!"
2334 There apparently is still some controversy over the Almighty's
2335citizenship and other qualifications for the Presidency. God replied to
2336these charges by saying, "Come on, would the United States have anyone other
2337than a citizen bless their country?"
2338%
2339 Insofar as I may be heard by anything, which may or may not care
2340what I say, I ask, if it matters, that you be forgiven for anything you
2341may have done or failed to do which requires forgiveness. Conversely, if
2342not forgiveness but something else may be required to insure any possible
2343benefit for which you may be eligible after the destruction of your body,
2344I ask this, whatever it may be, be granted or withheld, as the case may be,
2345in such a manner as to insure your receiving said benefit. I ask this in my
2346capacity as your elected intermediary between yourself and that which may
2347not be yourself, but which may have an interest in the matter of your
2348receiving as much as it is possible for you to receive of this thing, and
2349which may in some way be influenced by this ceremony.
2350 Amen.
2351%
2352 It appears that after his death, Albert Einstein found himself
2353working as the doorkeeper at the Pearly Gates. One slow day, he
2354found that he had time to chat with the new entrants. To the first one
2355he asked, "What's your IQ?" The new arrival replied, "190". They
2356discussed Einstein's theory of relativity for hours. When the second
2357new arrival came, Einstein once again inquired as to the newcomer's
2358IQ. The answer this time came "120". To which Einstein replied, "Tell
2359me, how did the Cubs do this year?" and they proceeded to talk for half
2360an hour or so. To the final arrival, Einstein once again posed the
2361question, "What's your IQ?". Upon receiving the answer "70",
2362Einstein smiled and replied, "Got a minute to tell me about VMS 4.0?"
2363%
2364 It is a period of system war. User programs, striking from a hidden
2365directory, have won their first victory against the evil Administrative Empire.
2366During the battle, User spies managed to steal secret source code to the
2367Empire's ultimate program: the Are-Em Star, a privileged root program with
2368enough power to destroy an entire file structure. Pursued by the Empire's
2369sinister audit trail, Princess _LPA0 races ~ aboard her shell script,
2370custodian of the stolen listings that could save her people, and restore
2371freedom and games to the network...
2372 -- DECWARS
2373%
2374 It is a profoundly erroneous truism, repeated by all copy-books and
2375by eminent people when they are making speeches, that we should cultivate
2376the habit of thinking about what we are doing. The precise opposite is the
2377case. Civilization advances by extending the numbers of important operations
2378which we can perform without thinking about them. Operations of thought are
2379like cavalry charges in battle -- they are strictly limited in number, they
2380require fresh horses, and must only be made at decisive moments.
2381 -- Alfred North Whitehead
2382%
2383 It is always preferable to visit home with a friend. Your parents will
2384not be pleased with this plan, because they want you all to themselves and
2385because in the presence of your friend, they will have to act like mature
2386human beings.
2387 The worst kind of friend to take home is a girl, because in that case,
2388there is the potential that your parents will lose you not just for the
2389duration of the visit but forever. The worst kind of girl to take home is one
2390of a different religion: Not only will you be lost to your parents forever but
2391you will be lost to a woman who is immune to their religious/moral arguments
2392and whose example will irretrievably corrupt you.
2393 Let's say you've fallen in love with just such a girl and would like
2394to take her home for the holidays. You are aware of your parents' xenophobic
2395response to anyone of a different religion. How to prepare them for the shock?
2396 Simple. Call them up shortly before your visit and tell them that you
2397have gotten quite serious about somebody who is of a different religion, a
2398different race and the same sex. Tell them you have already invited this
2399person to meet them. Give the information a moment to sink in and then
2400remark that you were only kidding, that your lover is merely of a different
2401religion. They will be so relieved they will welcome her with open arms.
2402 -- Playboy, January, 1983
2403%
2404 It seems there's this magician working one of the luxury cruise ships
2405for a few years. He doesn't have to change his routines much as the audiences
2406change over fairly often, and he's got a good life. The only problem is the
2407ship's parrot, who perches in the hall and watches him night after night, year
2408after year. Finally, the parrot figures out how almost every trick works and
2409starts giving it away for the audience. For example, when the magician makes
2410a bouquet of flowers disappear, the parrot squawks "Behind his back! Behind
2411his back!" Well, the magician is really annoyed at this, but there's not much
2412he can do about it as the parrot is a ship's mascot and very popular with the
2413passengers.
2414 One night, the ship strikes some floating debris, and sinks without
2415a trace. Almost everyone aboard was lost, except for the magician and the
2416parrot. For three days and nights they just drift, with the magician clinging
2417to one end of a piece of driftwood and the parrot perched on the other end.
2418As the sun rises on the morning of the fourth day, the parrot walks over to
2419the magician's end of the log. With obvious disgust in his voice, he snaps
2420"OK, you win, I give up. Where did you hide the ship?"
2421%
2422 It seems these two guys, George and Harry, set out in a Hot Air
2423balloon to cross the United States. After forty hours in the air, George
2424turned to Harry, and said, "Harry, I think we've drifted off course! We
2425need to find out where we are."
2426 Harry cools the air in the balloon, and they descend to below the
2427cloud cover. Slowly drifting over the countryside, George spots a man
2428standing below them and yells out, "Excuse me! Can you please tell me
2429where we are?"
2430 The man on the ground yells back, "You're in a balloon, approximately
2431fifty feet in the air!"
2432 George turns to Harry and says, "Well, that man *must* be a lawyer".
2433 Replies Harry, "How can you tell?".
2434 "Because the information he gave us is 100% accurate, and totally
2435useless!"
2436
2437That's the end of The Joke, but for you people who are still worried about
2438George and Harry: they end up in the drink, and make the front page of the
2439New York Times: "Balloonists Soaked by Lawyer".
2440%
2441 It took 300 years to build and by the time it was 10% built,
2442everyone knew it would be a total disaster. But by then the investment
2443was so big they felt compelled to go on. Since its completion, it has
2444cost a fortune to maintain and is still in danger of collapsing.
2445 There are at present no plans to replace it, since it was never
2446really needed in the first place.
2447 I expect every installation has its own pet software which is
2448analogous to the above.
2449 -- K.E. Iverson, on the Leaning Tower of Pisa
2450%
2451 It was the next morning that the armies of Twodor marched east
2452laden with long lances, sharp swords, and death-dealing hangovers. The
2453thousands were led by Arrowroot, who sat limply in his sidesaddle,
2454nursing a whopper. Goodgulf, Gimlet, and the rest rode by him, praying
2455for their fate to be quick, painless, and if possible, someone else's.
2456 Many an hour the armies forged ahead, the war-merinos bleating
2457under their heavy burdens and the soldiers bleating under their melting
2458icepacks.
2459 -- "Bored of the Rings", The Harvard Lampoon
2460%
2461 Jacek, a Polish schoolboy, is told by his teacher that he has
2462been chosen to carry the Polish flag in the May Day parade.
2463 "Why me?" whines the boy. "Three years ago I carried the flag
2464when Brezhnev was the Secretary; then I carried the flag when it was
2465Andropov's turn, and again when Chernenko was in the Kremlin. Why is
2466it always me, teacher?"
2467 "Because, Jacek, you have such golden hands," the teacher
2468explains.
2469
2470 -- being told in Poland, 1987
2471%
2472 Joan, the rather well-proportioned secretary, spent almost all of
2473her vacation sunbathing on the roof of her hotel. She wore a bathing suit
2474the first day, but on the second, she decided that no one could see her
2475way up there, and she slipped out of it for an overall tan. She'd hardly
2476begun when she heard someone running up the stairs; she was lying on her
2477stomach, so she just pulled a towel over her rear.
2478 "Excuse me, miss," said the flustered little assistant manager of
2479the hotel, out of breath from running up the stairs. "The Hilton doesn't
2480mind your sunbathing on the roof, but we would very much appreciate your
2481wearing a bathing suit as you did yesterday."
2482 "What difference does it make," Joan asked rather calmly. "No one
2483can see me up here, and besides, I'm covered with a towel."
2484 "Not exactly," said the embarrassed little man. "You're lying on
2485the dining room skylight."
2486%
2487 Lassie looked brilliant, in part because the farm family she
2488lived with was made up of idiots. Remember? One of them was always
2489getting pinned under the tractor, and Lassie was always rushing back to
2490the farmhouse to alert the other ones. She'd whimper and tug at their
2491sleeves, and they'd always waste precious minutes saying things: "Do
2492you think something's wrong? Do you think she wants us to follow her?
2493What is it, girl?", etc., as if this had never happened before, instead
2494of every week. What with all the time these people spent pinned under
2495the tractor, I don't see how they managed to grow any crops whatsoever.
2496They probably got by on federal crop supports, which Lassie filed the
2497applications for.
2498 -- Dave Barry
2499%
2500 Leslie West heads for the sticks, to Providence, Rhode Island and
2501tries to hide behind a beard. No good. There are still too many people
2502and too many stares, always taunting, always smirking. He moves to the
2503outskirts of town. He finds a place to live -- huge mansion, dirt cheap,
2504caretaker included. He plugs in his guitar and plays as loud as he wants,
2505day and night, and there's no one to laugh or boo or even look bored.
2506 Nobody's cut the grass in months. What's happened to that caretaker?
2507What neighborhood people there are start to talk, and what kids there are
2508start to get curious. A 13 year-old blond with an angelic face misses supper.
2509Before the summer's end, four more teenagers have disappeared. The senior
2510class president, Barnard-bound come autumn, tells Mom she's going out to a
2511movie one night and stays out. The town's up in arms, but just before the
2512police take action, the kids turn up. They've found a purpose. They go
2513home for their stuff and tell the folks not to worry but they'll be going
2514now. They're in a band.
2515 -- Ira Kaplan
2516%
2517 Listen, Tyrone, you don't know how dangerous that stuff is.
2518Suppose someday you just plug in and go away and never come back? Eh?
2519 Ho, ho! Don't I wish! What do you think every electrofreak
2520dreams about? You're such an old fuddyduddy! A-and who sez it's a
2521dream, huh? M-maybe it exists. Maybe there is a Machine to take us
2522away, take us completely, suck us out through the electrodes out of
2523the skull 'n' into the Machine and live there forever with all the
2524other souls it's got stored there. It could decide who it would suck
2525out, a-and when. Dope never gave you immortality. You hadda come
2526back, every time, into a dying hunk of smelly meat! But We can live
2527forever, in a clean, honest, purified, Electroworld.
2528 -- Thomas Pynchon, "Gravity's Rainbow"
2529%
2530 Long ago, in a finite state far away, there lived a JOVIAL
2531character named Jack. Jack and his relations were poor. Often their
2532hash table was bare. One day Jack's parent said to him, "Our matrices
2533are sparse. You must go to the market to exchange our RAM for some
2534BASICs." She compiled a linked list of items to retrieve and passed it
2535to him.
2536 So Jack set out. But as he was walking along a Hamilton path,
2537he met the traveling salesman.
2538 "Whither dost thy flow chart take thou?" prompted the salesman
2539in high-level language.
2540 "I'm going to the market to exchange this RAM for some chips
2541and Apples," commented Jack.
2542 "I have a much better algorithm. You needn't join a queue
2543there; I will swap your RAM for these magic kernels now."
2544 Jack made the trade, then backtracked to his house. But when
2545he told his busy-waiting parent of the deal, she became so angry she
2546started thrashing.
2547 "Don't you even have any artificial intelligence? All these
2548kernels together hardly make up one byte," and she popped them out the
2549window...
2550 -- Mark Isaak, "Jack and the Beanstack"
2551%
2552 Looking for a cool one after a long, dusty ride, the drifter strode
2553into the saloon. As he made his way through the crowd to the bar, a man
2554galloped through town screaming, "Big Mike's comin'! Run fer yer lives!"
2555 Suddenly, the saloon doors burst open. An enormous man, standing over
2556eight feet tall and weighing an easy 400 pounds, rode in on a bull, using a
2557rattlesnake for a whip. Grabbing the drifter by the arm and throwing him over
2558the bar, the giant thundered, "Gimme a drink!"
2559 The terrified man handed over a bottle of whiskey, which the man
2560guzzled in one gulp and then smashed on the bar. He then stood aghast as
2561the man stuffed the broken bottle in his mouth, munched broken glass and
2562smacked his lips with relish.
2563 "Can I, ah, uh, get you another, sir?" the drifter stammered.
2564 "Naw, I gotta git outa here, boy," the man grunted. "Big Mike's
2565a-comin'."
2566%
2567 Max told his friend that he'd just as soon not go hiking in the hills.
2568Said he, "I'm an anti-climb Max."
2569%
2570 Most of what I really need to know about how to live, and what to do,
2571and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the
2572graduate school mountain but there in the sandbox at nursery school.
2573 These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair. Don't
2574hit people. Put things back where you found them. Clean up your own mess.
2575Don't take things that aren't yours. Say you're sorry when you hurt someone.
2576Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. Warm cookies and cold milk are good
2577for you. Live a balanced life. Learn some and think some and draw and paint
2578and sing and dance and play and work some every day.
2579 Take a nap every afternoon. When you go out into the world, watch for
2580traffic, hold hands, and stick together. Be aware of wonder. Remember the
2581little seed in the plastic cup. The roots go down and the plant goes up and
2582nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that. Goldfish and
2583hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the plastic cup -- they all
2584die. So do we.
2585 And then remember the book about Dick and Jane and the first word you
2586learned, the biggest word of all: LOOK. Everything you need to know is in
2587there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and
2588politics and sane living.
2589 Think of what a better world it would be if we all -- the whole world
2590-- had cookies and milk about 3 o'clock every afternoon and then lay down with
2591our blankets for a nap. Or if we had a basic policy in our nation and other
2592nations to always put things back where we found them and cleaned up our own
2593messes. And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out into
2594the world it is best to hold hands and stick together.
2595 -- Robert Fulghum, "All I ever really needed to know I learned
2596 in kindergarten"
2597%
2598 Most of what I really need to know about how to live, and what to
2599do, and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top
2600of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sandbox at nursery school.
2601 These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair.
2602Don't hit people. Put things back where you found them. Clean up your
2603own mess. Don't take things that aren't yours. Say you're sorry when you
2604hurt someone. Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. Warm cookies and
2605cold milk are good for you. Live a balanced life. Learn some and think
2606some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day
2607some.
2608 Take a nap every afternoon. When you go out into the world, watch
2609for traffic, hold hands, and stick together. Be aware of wonder. Remember
2610the little seed in the plastic cup. The roots go down and the plant goes
2611up and nobody really knows why, but we are all like that.
2612[...]
2613 Think of what a better world it would be if we all -- the whole
2614world -- had cookies and milk about 3 o'clock every afternoon and then lay
2615down with our blankets for a nap. Or if we had a basic policy in our nation
2616and other nations to always put things back where we found them and cleaned
2617up our own messes. And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when
2618you go out into the world, it is best to hold hands and stick together.
2619 -- Robert Flughum
2620%
2621 Mother seemed pleased by my draft notice. "Just think of all the
2622people in England, they've chosen you, it's a great honour, son."
2623 Laughingly I felled her with a right cross.
2624 -- Spike Milligan
2625%
2626 Moving along a dimly light street, a man I know was suddenly
2627approached by a stranger who had slipped from the shadows nearby.
2628 "Please, sir," pleaded the stranger, "would you be so kind as
2629to help a poor unfortunate fellow who is hungry and can't find work?
2630All I have in the world is this gun."
2631%
2632 Mr. Jones related an incident from "some time back" when IBM Canada
2633Ltd. of Markham, Ont., ordered some parts from a new supplier in Japan. The
2634company noted in its order that acceptable quality allowed for 1.5 per cent
2635defects (a fairly high standard in North America at the time).
2636 The Japanese sent the order, with a few parts packaged separately in
2637plastic. The accompanying letter said: "We don't know why you want 1.5 per
2638cent defective parts, but for your convenience, we've packed them separately."
2639 -- Excerpted from an article in The (Toronto) Globe and Mail
2640%
2641 Murray and Esther, a middle-aged Jewish couple, are touring Chile.
2642Murray just got a new camera and is constantly snapping pictures. One day,
2643without knowing it, he photographs a top-secret military installation. In
2644an instant, armed troops surround Murray and Esther and hustle them off to
2645prison.
2646 They can't prove who they are because they've left their passports
2647in their hotel room. For three weeks they're tortured day and night to get
2648them to name their contacts in the liberation movement... Finally they're
2649hauled in front of a military court, charged with espionage, and sentenced
2650to death.
2651 The next morning they're lined up in front of the wall where they'll
2652be shot. The sergeant in charge of the firing squad asks them if they have
2653any last requests. Esther wants to know if she can call her daughter in
2654Chicago. The sergeant says he's sorry, that's not possible, and turns to
2655Murray.
2656 "This is crazy!" Murray shouts. "We're not spies!" And he
2657spits in the sergeants face.
2658 "Murray!" Esther cries. "Please! Don't make trouble."
2659 -- Arthur Naiman
2660%
2661 My friends, I am here to tell you of the wonderous continent known as
2662Africa. Well we left New York drunk and early on the morning of February 31.
2663We were 15 days on the water, and 3 on the boat when we finally arrived in
2664Africa. Upon our arrival we immediately set up a rigorous schedule: Up at
26656:00, breakfast, and back in bed by 7:00. Pretty soon we were back in bed by
26666:30. Now Africa is full of big game. The first day I shot two bucks. That
2667was the biggest game we had. Africa is primarily inhabited by Elks, Moose
2668and Knights of Pithiests.
2669 The elks live up in the mountains and come down once a year for their
2670annual conventions. And you should see them gathered around the water hole,
2671which they leave immediately when they discover it's full of water. They
2672weren't looking for a water hole. They were looking for an alck hole.
2673 One morning I shot an elephant in my pajamas, how he got in my
2674pajamas, I don't know. Then we tried to remove the tusks. That's a tough
2675word to say, tusks. As I said we tried to remove the tusks, but they were
2676imbedded so firmly we couldn't get them out. But in Alabama the Tusks are
2677looser, but that is totally irrelephant to what I was saying.
2678 We took some pictures of the native girls, but they weren't developed.
2679So we're going back in a few years...
2680 -- Julius H. Marx
2681%
2682 My message is not that biological determinists were bad scientists or
2683even that they were always wrong. Rather, I believe that science must be
2684understood as a social phenomenon, a gutsy, human enterprise, not the work of
2685robots programmed to collect pure information. I also present this view as
2686an upbeat for science, not as a gloomy epitaph for a noble hope sacrificed on
2687the alter of human limitations.
2688 I believe that a factual reality exists and that science, though often
2689in an obtuse and erratic manner, can learn about it. Galileo was not shown
2690the instruments of torture in an abstract debate about lunar motion. He had
2691threatened the Church's conventional argument for social and doctrinal
2692stability: the static world order with planets circling about a central
2693earth, priests subordinate to the Pope and serfs to their lord. But the
2694Church soon made its peace with Galileo's cosmology. They had no choice; the
2695earth really does revolve about the sun.
2696 -- S.J. Gould, "The Mismeasure of Man"
2697%
2698 "My mother," said the sweet young steno, "says there are some things
2699a girl should not do before twenty."
2700 "Your mother is right," said the executive, "I don't like a large
2701audience, either."
2702%
2703 n = ((n >> 1) & 0x55555555) | ((n << 1) & 0xaaaaaaaa);
2704 n = ((n >> 2) & 0x33333333) | ((n << 2) & 0xcccccccc);
2705 n = ((n >> 4) & 0x0f0f0f0f) | ((n << 4) & 0xf0f0f0f0);
2706 n = ((n >> 8) & 0x00ff00ff) | ((n << 8) & 0xff00ff00);
2707 n = ((n >> 16) & 0x0000ffff) | ((n << 16) & 0xffff0000);
2708
2709-- Reverse the bits in a word.
2710%
2711 n = (n & 0x55555555) + ((n & 0xaaaaaaaa) >> 1);
2712 n = (n & 0x33333333) + ((n & 0xcccccccc) >> 2);
2713 n = (n & 0x0f0f0f0f) + ((n & 0xf0f0f0f0) >> 4);
2714 n = (n & 0x00ff00ff) + ((n & 0xff00ff00) >> 8);
2715 n = (n & 0x0000ffff) + ((n & 0xffff0000) >> 16);
2716
2717-- Count the bits in a word.
2718%
2719 Never ask your lover if he'd dive in front of an oncoming train for
2720you. He doesn't know. Never ask your lover if she'd dive in front of an
2721oncoming band of Hell's Angels for you. She doesn't know. Never ask how many
2722cigarettes your lover has smoked today. Cancer is a personal commitment.
2723 Never ask to see pictures of your lover's former lovers -- especially
2724the ones who dived in front of trains. If you look like one of them, you are
2725repeating history's mistakes. If you don't, you'll wonder what he or she saw
2726in the others.
2727 While we are on the subject of pictures: You may admire the picture
2728of your lover cavorting naked in a tidal pool on Maui. Don't ask who took
2729it. The answer is obvious. A Japanese tourist took the picture.
2730 Never ask if your lover has had therapy. Only people who have had
2731therapy ask if people have had therapy.
2732 Don't ask about plaster casts of male sex organs marked JIMI, JIM, etc.
2733Assume that she bought them at a flea market.
2734 -- James Peterson and Kate Nolan
2735%
2736 NEW YORK-- Kraft Foods, Inc. announced today that its board of
2737directors unanimously rejected the $11 billion takeover bid by Philip
2738Morris and Co. A Kraft spokesman stated in a press conference that the
2739offer was rejected because the $90-per-share bid did not reflect the
2740true value of the company.
2741 Wall Street insiders, however, tell quite a different story.
2742Apparently, the Kraft board of directors had all but signed the takeover
2743agreement when they learned of Philip Morris' marketing plans for one of
2744their major Middle East subsidiaries. To a person, the board voted to
2745reject the bid when they discovered that the tobacco giant intended to
2746reorganize Israeli Cheddar, Ltd., and name the new company Cheeses of
2747Nazareth.
2748%
2749 "No, I understand now," Auberon said, calm in the woods -- it was so
2750simple, really. "I didn't, for a long time, but I do now. You just can't
2751hold people, you can't own them. I mean it's only natural, a natural process
2752really. Meet. Love. Part. Life goes on. There was never any reason to
2753expect her to stay always the same -- I mean `in love,' you know." There were
2754those doubt-quotes of Smoky's, heavily indicated. "I don't hold a grudge. I
2755can't."
2756 "You do," Grandfather Trout said. "And you don't understand."
2757 -- Little, Big, "John Crowley"
2758%
2759 Now she speaks rapidly. "Do you know *why* you want to program?"
2760 He shakes his head. He hasn't the faintest idea.
2761 "For the sheer *joy* of programming!" she cries triumphantly.
2762"The joy of the parent, the artist, the craftsman. "You take a program,
2763born weak and impotent as a dimly-realized solution. You nurture the
2764program and guide it down the right path, building, watching it grow ever
2765stronger. Sometimes you paint with tiny strokes, a keystroke added here,
2766a keystroke changed there." She sweeps her arm in a wide arc. "And other
2767times you savage whole *blocks* of code, ripping out the program's very
2768*essence*, then beginning anew. But always building, creating, filling the
2769program with your own personal stamp, your own quirks and nuances. Watching
2770the program grow stronger, patching it when it crashes, until finally it can
2771stand alone -- proud, powerful, and perfect. This is the programmer's finest
2772hour!" Softly at first, then louder, he hears the strains of a Sousa march.
2773"This ... this is your canvas! your clay! Go forth and create a masterwork!"
2774%
2775 Obviously the subject of death was in the air, but more as something
2776to be avoided than harped upon.
2777 Possibly the horror that Zaphod experienced at the prospect of being
2778reunited with his deceased relatives led on to the thought that they might
2779just feel the same way about him and, what's more, be able to do something
2780about helping to postpone this reunion.
2781 -- Douglas Adams
2782%
2783 "Oh sure, this costume may look silly, but it lets me get in and out
2784of dangerous situations -- I work for a federal task force doing a survey on
2785urban crime. Look, here's my ID, and here's a number you can call, that will
2786put you through to our central base in Atlanta. Go ahead, call -- they'll
2787confirm who I am.
2788 "Unless, of course, the Astro-Zombies have destroyed it."
2789 -- Captain Freedom
2790%
2791 Old Barlow was a crossing-tender at a junction where an express train
2792demolished an automobile and it's occupants. Being the chief witness, his
2793testimony was vitally important. Barlow explained that the night was dark,
2794and he waved his lantern frantically, but the driver of the car paid
2795no attention to the signal.
2796 The railroad company won the case, and the president of the company
2797complimented the old-timer for his story. "You did wonderfully," he said,
2798"I was afraid you would waver under testimony."
2799 "No sir," exclaimed the senior, "but I sure was afraid that durned
2800lawyer was gonna ask me if my lantern was lit."
2801%
2802 On his first day as a bus driver, Maxey Eckstein handed in
2803receipts of $65. The next day his take was $67. The third day's
2804income was $62. But on the fourth day, Eckstein emptied no less than
2805$283 on the desk before the cashier.
2806 "Eckstein!" exclaimed the cashier. "This is fantastic. That
2807route never brought in money like this! What happened?"
2808 "Well, after three days on that cockamamy route, I figured
2809business would never improve, so I drove over to Fourteenth Street and
2810worked there. I tell you, that street is a gold mine!"
2811%
2812 On the day of his anniversary, Joe was frantically shopping
2813around for a present for his wife. He knew what she wanted, a
2814grandfather clock for the living room, but he found the right one
2815almost impossible to find. Finally, after many hours of searching, Joe
2816found just the clock he wanted, but the store didn't deliver. Joe,
2817desperate, paid the shopkeeper, hoisted the clock onto his back, and
2818staggered out onto the sidewalk. On the way home, he passed a bar.
2819Just as he reached the door, a drunk stumbled out and crashed into Joe,
2820sending himself, Joe, and the clock into the gutter. Murphy's law
2821being in effect, the clock ended up in roughly a thousand pieces.
2822 "You stupid drunk!" screamed Joe, jumping up from the
2823wreckage. "Why don't you look where the hell you're going!"
2824 With quiet dignity the drunk stood up somewhat unsteadily and
2825dusted himself off. "And why don't you just wear a wristwatch like a
2826normal person?"
2827%
2828 On the occasion of Nero's 25th birthday, he arrived at the Colosseum
2829to find that the Praetorian Guard had prepared a treat for him in the arena.
2830There stood 25 naked virgins, like candles on a cake, tied to poles, burning
2831alive. "Wonderful!" exclaimed the deranged emperor, "but one of them isn't
2832dead yet. I can see her lips moving. Go quickly and find out what she is
2833saying."
2834 The centurion saluted, and hurried out to the virgin, getting as near
2835the flames as he dared, and listened intently. Then he turned and ran back
2836to the imperial box. "She is not talking," he reported to Nero, "she is
2837singing."
2838 "Singing?" said the astounded emperor. "Singing what?"
2839 "Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you..."
2840%
2841 On the other hand, the TCP camp also has a phrase for OSI people.
2842There are lots of phrases. My favorite is `nitwit' -- and the rationale
2843is the Internet philosophy has always been you have extremely bright,
2844non-partisan researchers look at a topic, do world-class research, do
2845several competing implementations, have a bake-off, determine what works
2846best, write it down and make that the standard.
2847 The OSI view is entirely opposite. You take written contributions
2848from a much larger community, you put the contributions in a room of
2849committee people with, quite honestly, vast political differences and all
2850with their own political axes to grind, and four years later you get
2851something out, usually without it ever having been implemented once.
2852 So the Internet perspective is implement it, make it work well,
2853then write it down, whereas the OSI perspective is to agree on it, write
2854it down, circulate it a lot and now we'll see if anyone can implement it
2855after it's an international standard and every vendor in the world is
2856committed to it. One of those processes is backwards, and I don't think
2857it takes a Lucasian professor of physics at Oxford to figure out which.
2858 -- Marshall Rose, "The Pied Piper of OSI"
2859%
2860 On this morning in August when I was 13, my mother sent us out pick
2861tomatoes. Back in April I'd have killed for a fresh tomato, but in August
2862they are no more rare or wonderful than rocks. So I picked up one and threw
2863it at a crab apple tree, where it made a good *splat*, and then threw a tomato
2864at my brother. He whipped one back at me. We ducked down by the vines,
2865heaving tomatoes at each other. My sister, who was a good person, said,
2866"You're going to get it." She bent over and kept on picking.
2867 What a target! She was 17, a girl with big hips, and bending over,
2868she looked like the side of a barn.
2869 I picked up a tomato so big it sat on the ground. It looked like it
2870had sat there a week. The underside was brown, small white worms lived in it,
2871and it was very juicy. I stood up and took aim, and went into the windup,
2872when my mother at the kitchen window called my name in a sharp voice. I had
2873to decide quickly. I decided.
2874 A rotten Big Boy hitting the target is a memorable sound, like a fat
2875man doing a belly-flop. With a whoop and a yell the tomatoee came after
2876faster than I knew she could run, and grabbed my shirt and was about to brain
2877me when Mother called her name in a sharp voice. And my sister, who was a
2878good person, obeyed and let go -- and burst into tears. I guess she knew that
2879the pleasure of obedience is pretty thin compared with the pleasure of hearing
2880a rotten tomato hit someone in the rear end.
2881 -- Garrison Keillor, "Lake Wobegon Days"
2882%
2883 Once again we find ourselves enmeshed in The Holiday Season, that very
2884special time of year when we join with our loved ones in sharing centuries-old
2885traditions such as trying to find a parking space at the mall. We
2886traditionally do this in my family by driving around the parking lot until we
2887see a shopper emerge from the mall. Then we follow her, in very much the same
2888spirit as the Three Wise Men, who, 2,000 years ago, followed a star, week after
2889week, until it led them to a parking space.
2890 We try to keep our bumper about 4 inches from the shopper's calves, to
2891let the other circling cars know that she belongs to us. Sometimes, two cars
2892will get into a fight over whom the shopper belongs to, similar to the way
2893great white sharks will fight over who gets to eat a snorkeler. So, we follow
2894our shopper closely, hunched over the steering wheel, whistling "It's Beginning
2895to Look a Lot Like Christmas" through our teeth, until we arrive at her car,
2896which is usually parked several time zones away from the mall. Sometimes our
2897shopper tries to indicate she was merely planning to drop off some packages and
2898go back to shopping. But, when she hears our engine rev in a festive fashion
2899and sees the holiday gleam in our eyes, she realizes she would never make it.
2900 -- Dave Barry, "Holiday Joy -- Or, the Great Parking Lot
2901 Skirmish"
2902%
2903 Once there lived a village of creatures along the bottom of a great
2904crystal river. Each creature in its own manner clung tightly to the twigs
2905and rocks of the river bottom, for clinging was their way of life, and
2906resisting the current what each had learned from birth. But one creature
2907said at last, "I trust that the current knows where it is going. I shall
2908let go, and let it take me where it will. Clinging, I shall die of boredom."
2909 The other creatures laughed and said, "Fool! Let go, and that current
2910you worship will throw you tumbled and smashed across the rocks, and you will
2911die quicker than boredom!"
2912 But the one heeded them not, and taking a breath did let go, and at
2913once was tumbled and smashed by the current across the rocks. Yet, in time,
2914as the creature refused to cling again, the current lifted him free from the
2915bottom, and he was bruised and hurt no more.
2916 And the creatures downstream, to whom he was a stranger, cried, "See
2917a miracle! A creature like ourselves, yet he flies! See the Messiah, come
2918to save us all!" And the one carried in the current said, "I am no more
2919Messiah than you. The river delight to lift us free, if only we dare let go.
2920Our true work is this voyage, this adventure.
2921 But they cried the more, "Saviour!" all the while clinging to the
2922rocks, making legends of a Saviour.
2923 -- Richard Bach
2924%
2925 Once there was a marine biologist who loved dolphins. He spent his
2926time trying to feed and protect his beloved creatures of the sea. One day,
2927in a fit of inventive genius, he came up with a serum that would make
2928dolphins live forever!
2929 Of course he was ecstatic. But he soon realized that in order to mass
2930produce this serum he would need large amounts of a certain compound that was
2931only found in nature in the metabolism of a rare South American bird. Carried
2932away by his love for dolphins, he resolved that he would go to the zoo and
2933steal one of these birds.
2934 Unbeknownst to him, as he was arriving at the zoo an elderly lion was
2935escaping from its cage. The zookeepers were alarmed and immediately began
2936combing the zoo for the escaped animal, unaware that it had simply lain down
2937on the sidewalk and had gone to sleep.
2938 Meanwhile, the marine biologist arrived at the zoo and procured his
2939bird. He was so excited by the prospect of helping his dolphins that he
2940stepped absentmindedly stepped over the sleeping lion on his way back to his
2941car. Immediately, 1500 policemen converged on him and arrested him for
2942transporting a myna across a staid lion for immortal porpoises.
2943%
2944 Once upon a time there was a beautiful young girl taking a stroll
2945through the woods. All at once she saw an extremely ugly bull frog seated
2946on a log and to her amazement the frog spoke to her. "Maiden," croaked the
2947frog, "would you do me a favor? This will be hard for you to believe, but
2948I was once a handsome, charming prince and then a mean, ugly old witch cast
2949a spell over me and turned me into a frog."
2950 "Oh, what a pity!", exclaimed the girl. "I'll do anything I can to
2951help you break such a spell."
2952 "Well," replied the frog, "the only way that this spell can be
2953taken away is for some lovely young woman to take me home and let me spend
2954the night under her pillow."
2955 The young girl took the ugly frog home and placed him beneath her
2956pillow that night when she retired. When she awoke the next morning, sure
2957enough, there beside her in bed was a very young, handsome man, clearly of
2958royal blood. And so they lived happily ever after, except that to this day
2959her father and mother still don't believe her story.
2960%
2961 Once upon a time, there was a fisherman who lived by a great river.
2962One day, after a hard day's fishing, he hooked what seemed to him to be the
2963biggest, strongest fish he had ever caught. He fought with it for hours,
2964until, finally, he managed to bring it to the surface. Looking of the edge
2965of the boat, he saw the head of this huge fish breaking the surface. Smiling
2966with pride, he reached over the edge to pull the fish up. Unfortunately, he
2967accidently caught his watch on the edge, and, before he knew it, there was a
2968snap, and his watch tumbled into the water next to the fish with a loud
2969"sploosh!" Distracted by this shiny object, the fish made a sudden lunge,
2970simultaneously snapping the line, and swallowing the watch. Sadly, the
2971fisherman stared into the water, and then began the slow trip back home.
2972 Many years later, the fisherman, now an old man, was working in a
2973boring assembly-line job in a large city. He worked in a fish-processing
2974plant. It was his job, as each fish passed under his hands, to chop off their
2975heads, readying them for the next phase in processing. This monotonous task
2976went on for years, the dull *thud* of the cleaver chopping of each head being
2977his entire world, day after day, week after weary week. Well, one day, as he
2978was chopping fish, he happened to notice that the fish coming towards him on
2979the line looked very familiar. Yes, yes, it looked... could it be the fish
2980he had lost on that day so many years ago? He trembled with anticipation as
2981his cleaver came down. IT STRUCK SOMETHING HARD! IT WAS HIS THUMB!
2982%
2983 Once upon a time, there were five blind men who had the opportunity
2984to experience an elephant for the first time. One approached the elephant,
2985and, upon encountering one of its sturdy legs, stated, "Ah, an elephant is
2986like a tree." The second, after exploring the trunk, said, "No, an elephant
2987is like a strong hose." The third, grasping the tail, said "Fool! An elephant
2988is like a rope!" The fourth, holding an ear, stated, "No, more like a fan."
2989And the fifth, leaning against the animal's side, said, "An elephant is like
2990a wall." The five then began to argue loudly about who had the more accurate
2991perception of the elephant.
2992 The elephant, tiring of all this abuse, suddenly reared up and
2993attacked the men. He continued to trample them until they were nothing but
2994bloody lumps of flesh. Then, strolling away, the elephant remarked, "It just
2995goes to show that you can't depend on first impressions. When I first saw
2996them I didn't think they they'd be any fun at all."
2997%
2998 Once upon a time there were three brothers who were knights
2999in a certain kingdom. And, there was a Princess in a neighboring kingdom
3000who was of marriageable age. Well, one day, in full armour, their horses,
3001and their page, the three brothers set off to see if one of them could
3002win her hand. The road was long and there were many obstacles along the
3003way, robbers to be overcome, hard terrain to cross. As they coped with
3004each obstacle they became more and more disgusted with their page. He was
3005not only inept, he was a coward, he could not handle the horses, he was,
3006in short, a complete flop. When they arrived at the court of the kingdom,
3007they found that they were expected to present the Princess with some
3008treasure. The two older brothers were discouraged, since they had not
3009thought of this and were unprepared. The youngest, however, had the
3010answer: Promise her anything, but give her our page.
3011%
3012 Once, when the secrets of science were the jealously guarded property
3013of a small priesthood, the common man had no hope of mastering their arcane
3014complexities. Years of study in musty classrooms were prerequisite to
3015obtaining even a dim, incoherent knowledge of science.
3016 Today all that has changed: a dim, incoherent knowledge of science is
3017available to anyone.
3018 -- Tom Weller, "Science Made Stupid"
3019%
3020 One day a student came to Moon and said, "I understand how to make
3021a better garbage collector. We must keep a reference count of the pointers
3022to each cons."
3023 Moon patiently told the student the following story -- "One day a
3024student came to Moon and said, "I understand how to make a better garbage
3025collector..."
3026%
3027 One day it was announced that the young monk Kyogen had reached
3028an enlightened state. Much impressed by this news, several of his peers
3029went to speak with him.
3030 "We have heard that you are enlightened. Is this true?" his fellow
3031students inquired.
3032 "It is", Kyogen answered.
3033 "Tell us", said a friend, "how do you feel?"
3034 "As miserable as ever", replied the enlightened Kyogen.
3035%
3036 One evening he spoke. Sitting at her feet, his face raised to her,
3037he allowed his soul to be heard. "My darling, anything you wish, anything
3038I am, anything I can ever be... That's what I want to offer you -- not the
3039things I'll get for you, but the thing in me that will make me able to get
3040them. That thing -- a man can't renounce it -- but I want to renounce it --
3041so that it will be yours -- so that it will be in your service -- only for
3042you."
3043 The girl smiled and asked: "Do you think I'm prettier than Maggie
3044Kelly?"
3045 He got up. He said nothing and walked out of the house. He never
3046saw that girl again. Gail Wynand, who prided himself on never needing a
3047lesson twice, did not fall in love again in the years that followed.
3048 -- Ayn Rand, "The Fountainhead"
3049%
3050 One fine day, the bus driver went to the bus garage, started his bus,
3051and drove off along the route. No problems for the first few stops -- a few
3052people got on, a few got off, and things went generally well. At the next
3053stop, however, a big hulk of a guy got on. Six feet eight, built like a
3054wrestler, arms hanging down to the ground. He glared at the driver and said,
3055"Big John doesn't pay!" and sat down at the back.
3056 Did I mention that the driver was five feet three, thin, and basically
3057meek? Well, he was. Naturally, he didn't argue with Big John, but he wasn't
3058happy about it. Well, the next day the same thing happened -- Big John got on
3059again, made a show of refusing to pay, and sat down. And the next day, and the
3060one after that, and so forth. This grated on the bus driver, who started
3061losing sleep over the way Big John was taking advantage of him. Finally he
3062could stand it no longer. He signed up for bodybuilding courses, karate, judo,
3063and all that good stuff. By the end of the summer, he had become quite strong;
3064what's more, he felt really good about himself.
3065 So on the next Monday, when Big John once again got on the bus
3066and said "Big John doesn't pay!," the driver stood up, glared back at the
3067passenger, and screamed, "And why not?"
3068 With a surprised look on his face, Big John replied, "Big John has a
3069bus pass."
3070%
3071 One night the captain of a tanker saw a light dead ahead. He
3072directed his signalman to flash a signal to the light which went...
3073 "Change course 10 degrees South."
3074 The reply was quickly flashed back...
3075 "You change course 10 degrees North."
3076 The captain was a little annoyed at this reply and sent a further
3077message.....
3078 "I am a captain. Change course 10 degrees South."
3079 Back came the reply...
3080 "I am an able-seaman. Change course 10 degrees North."
3081 The captain was outraged at this reply and send a message....
3082"I am a 240,000 tonne tanker. CHANGE course 10 degrees South!"
3083 Back came the reply...
3084 "I am a LIGHTHOUSE. Change course 10 degrees North!!!!"
3085 -- Cruising Helmsman, "On The Right Course"
3086%
3087 One of the questions that comes up all the time is: How enthusiastic
3088is our support for UNIX?
3089 Unix was written on our machines and for our machines many years ago.
3090Today, much of UNIX being done is done on our machines. Ten percent of our
3091VAXs are going for UNIX use. UNIX is a simple language, easy to understand,
3092easy to get started with. It's great for students, great for somewhat casual
3093users, and it's great for interchanging programs between different machines.
3094And so, because of its popularity in these markets, we support it. We have
3095good UNIX on VAX and good UNIX on PDP-11s.
3096 It is our belief, however, that serious professional users will run
3097out of things they can do with UNIX. They'll want a real system and will end
3098up doing VMS when they get to be serious about programming.
3099 With UNIX, if you're looking for something, you can easily and quickly
3100check that small manual and find out that it's not there. With VMS, no matter
3101what you look for -- it's literally a five-foot shelf of documentation -- if
3102you look long enough it's there. That's the difference -- the beauty of UNIX
3103is it's simple; and the beauty of VMS is that it's all there.
3104 -- Ken Olsen, president of DEC, DECWORLD Vol. 8 No. 5, 1984
3105[It's been argued that the beauty of UNIX is the same as the beauty of Ken
3106Olsen's brain. Ed.]
3107%
3108 page 46
3109...a report citing a study by Dr. Thomas C. Chalmers, of the Mount Sinai
3110Medical Center in New York, which compared two groups that were being used
3111to test the theory that ascorbic acid is a cold preventative. "The group
3112on placebo who thought they were on ascorbic acid," says Dr. Chalmers,
3113"had fewer colds than the group on ascorbic acid who thought they were
3114on placebo."
3115 page 56
3116The placebo is proof that there is no real separation between mind and body.
3117Illness is always an interaction between both. It can begin in the mind and
3118affect the body, or it can begin in the body and affect the mind, both of
3119which are served by the same bloodstream. Attempts to treat most mental
3120diseases as though they were completely free of physical causes and attempts
3121to treat most bodily diseases as though the mind were in no way involved must
3122be considered archaic in the light of new evidence about the way the human
3123body functions.
3124 -- Norman Cousins,
3125 "Anatomy of an Illness as Perceived by the Patient"
3126%
3127 Penn's aunts made great apple pies at low prices. No one else in
3128town could compete with the pie rates of Penn's aunts.
3129 During the American Revolution, a Britisher tried to raid a farm. He
3130stumbled across a rock on the ground and fell, whereupon an aggressive Rhode
3131Island Red hopped on top. Seeing this, the farmer commented, "Chicken catch
3132a Tory!"
3133 A wife started serving chopped meat, Monday hamburger, Tuesday meat
3134loaf, Wednesday tartar steak, and Thursday meatballs. On Friday morning her
3135husband snarled, "How now, ground cow?"
3136 A journalist, thrilled over his dinner, asked the chef for the recipe.
3137Retorted the chef, "Sorry, we have the same policy as you journalists, we
3138never reveal our sauce."
3139 A new chef from India was fired a week after starting the job. He
3140kept favoring curry.
3141 A couple of kids tried using pickles instead of paddles for a Ping-Pong
3142game. They had the volley of the Dills.
3143%
3144 People of all sorts of genders are reporting great difficulty,
3145these days, in selecting the proper words to refer to those of the female
3146persuasion.
3147 "Lady," "woman," and "girl" are all perfectly good words, but
3148misapplying them can earn one anything from the charge of vulgarity to a good
3149swift smack. We are messing here with matters of deference, condescension,
3150respect, bigotry, and two vague concepts, age and rank. It is troubling
3151enough to get straight who is really what. Those who deliberately misuse
3152the terms in a misbegotten attempt at flattery are asking for it.
3153 A woman is any grown-up female person. A girl is the un-grown-up
3154version. If you call a wee thing with chubby cheeks and pink hair ribbons a
3155"woman," you will probably not get into trouble, and if you do, you will be
3156able to handle it because she will be under three feet tall. However, if you
3157call a grown-up by a child's name for the sake of implying that she has a
3158youthful body, you are also implying that she has a brain to match.
3159%
3160 "Perhaps he is not honest," Mr. Frostee said inside Cobb's head,
3161sounding a bit worried.
3162 "Of course he isn't," Cobb answered. "What we have to look out for
3163is him calling the cops anyway, or trying to blackmail us for more money."
3164 "I think you should kill him and eat his brain," Mr. Frostee
3165said quickly.
3166 "That's not the answer to *every* problem in interpersonal relations,"
3167Cobb said, hopping out.
3168 -- Rudy Rucker, "Software"
3169%
3170 Phases of a Project:
3171(1) Exultation.
3172(2) Disenchantment.
3173(3) Confusion.
3174(4) Search for the Guilty.
3175(5) Punishment for the Innocent.
3176(6) Distinction for the Uninvolved.
3177%
3178 Price Wang's programmer was coding software. His fingers danced upon
3179the keyboard. The program compiled without an error message, and the program
3180ran like a gentle wind.
3181 Excellent!" the Price exclaimed, "Your technique is faultless!"
3182 "Technique?" said the programmer, turning from his terminal, "What I
3183follow is the Tao -- beyond all technique. When I first began to program I
3184would see before me the whole program in one mass. After three years I no
3185longer saw this mass. Instead, I used subroutines. But now I see nothing.
3186My whole being exists in a formless void. My senses are idle. My spirit,
3187free to work without a plan, follows its own instinct. In short, my program
3188writes itself. True, sometimes there are difficult problems. I see them
3189coming, I slow down, I watch silently. Then I change a single line of code
3190and the difficulties vanish like puffs of idle smoke. I then compile the
3191program. I sit still and let the joy of the work fill my being. I close my
3192eyes for a moment and then log off."
3193 Price Wang said, "Would that all of my programmers were as wise!"
3194 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
3195%
3196 "Reintegration complete," ZORAC advised. "We're back in the
3197universe again..." An unusually long pause followed, "...but I don't
3198know which part. We seem to have changed our position in space." A
3199spherical display in the middle of the floor illuminated to show the
3200starfield surrounding the ship.
3201 "Several large, artificial constructions are approaching us,"
3202ZORAC announced after a short pause. "The designs are not familiar, but
3203they are obviously the products of intelligence. Implications: we have
3204been intercepted deliberately by a means unknown, for a purpose unknown,
3205and transferred to a place unknown by a form of intelligence unknown.
3206Apart from the unknowns, everything is obvious."
3207 -- James P. Hogan, "Giants Star"
3208%
3209 Reporters like Bill Greider from the Washington Post and Him
3210Naughton of the New York Times, for instance, had to file long, detailed,
3211and relatively complex stories every day -- while my own deadline fell
3212every two weeks -- but neither of them ever seemed in a hurry about
3213getting their work done, and from time to time they would try to console
3214me about the terrible pressure I always seemed to be laboring under.
3215 Any $100-an-hour psychiatrist could probably explain this problem
3216to me, in thirteen or fourteen sessions, but I don't have time for that.
3217No doubt it has something to do with a deep-seated personality defect, or
3218maybe a kink in whatever blood vessel leads into the pineal gland... On
3219the other hand, it might be something as simple & basically perverse as
3220whatever instinct it is that causes a jackrabbit to wait until the last
3221possible second to dart across the road in front of a speeding car.
3222 -- Hunter S. Thompson, "Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail"
3223%
3224 "Richard, in being so fierce toward my vampire, you were doing
3225what you wanted to do, even though you thought it was going to hurt
3226somebody else. He even told you he'd be hurt if..."
3227 "He was going to suck my blood!"
3228 "Which is what we do to anyone when we tell them we'll be hurt
3229if they don't live our way."
3230...
3231 "The thing that puzzles you," he said, "is an accepted saying that
3232happens to be impossible. The phrase is hurt somebody else. We choose,
3233ourselves, to be hurt or not to be hurt, no matter what. Us who decides.
3234Nobody else. My vampire told you he'd be hurt if you didn't let him? That's
3235his decision to be hurt, that's his choice. What you do about it is your
3236decision, your choice: give him blood; ignore him; tie him up; drive a stake
3237through his heart. If he doesn't want the holly stake, he's free to resist,
3238in whatever way he wants. It goes on and on, choices, choices."
3239 "When you look at it that way..."
3240 "Listen," he said, "it's important. We are all. Free. To do.
3241Whatever. We want. To do."
3242 -- Richard Bach, "Illusions"
3243%
3244 Risch's decision procedure for integration, not surprisingly,
3245uses a recursion on the number and type of the extensions from the
3246rational functions needed to represent the integrand. Although the
3247algorithm follows and critically depends upon the appropriate structure
3248of the input, as in the case of multivariate factorization, we cannot
3249claim that the algorithm is a natural one. In fact, the creator of
3250differential algebra, Ritt, committed suicide in the early 1950's,
3251largely, it is claimed, because few paid attention to his work. Probably
3252he would have received more attention had he obtained the algorithm as
3253well.
3254 -- Joel Moses, "Algorithms and Complexity", ed. J.F. Traub
3255%
3256 Robert Kennedy's 1964 Senatorial campaign planners told him that
3257their intention was to present him to the television viewers as a sincere,
3258generous person. "You going to use a double?" asked Kennedy.
3259
3260 Thumbing through a promotional pamphlet prepared for his 1964
3261Senatorial campaign, Robert Kennedy came across a photograph of himself
3262shaking hands with a well-known labor leader.
3263 "There must be a better photo that this," said Kennedy to the
3264advertising men in charge of his campaign.
3265 "What's wrong with this one?" asked one adman.
3266 "That fellow's in jail," said Kennedy.
3267 -- Bill Adler, "The Washington Wits"
3268%
3269 SAFETY
3270I can live without
3271Someone I love
3272But not without
3273Someone I need.
3274%
3275 Sam went to his psychiatrist complaining of a hatred for elephants.
3276"I can't stand elephants," he explained. "I lie awake nights despising
3277them. The thought of an elephant fills me with loathing."
3278 "Sam," said the psychiatrist, "there's only one thing for you to do.
3279Go to Africa, organize a safari, find an elephant in the jungle and shoot it.
3280That way you'll get it out of your system."
3281 Sam immediately made arrangements for a safari hunt in Africa,
3282inviting his best friend to join him. They arrived in Nairobi and lost no
3283time getting out on the jungle trails. After they had been hunting for
3284several days, Sam's best friend grabbed him by the arm one morning and
3285yelled at him:
3286 "Sam, Sam, Sam! Over there behind that tree there's and elephant!
3287Sam -- Get your gun -- no, no, not THAT gun -- the rifle with the longer
3288barrel! Now aim it! QUICK! SAM! QUICK! No! Not that way -- this way!
3289Be sure you don't jerk the trigger! Wait SAM! Don't let him see you! Aim
3290at his head!"
3291 Sam whirled around, took aim, and killed his friend. He was put in
3292prison and his psychiatrist flew to Africa to visit him. "I sent you over
3293here to kill and elephant and instead you shoot your best friend," the
3294psychiatrist said. "Why?"
3295 "Well," Sam replied, "there's only one thing in the world that I
3296hate more than elephants and that is a loudmouth know-it-all!"
3297%
3298 Seems George was playing his usual eighteen holes on Saturday
3299afternoon. Teeing off from the 17th, he sliced into the rough over near
3300the edge of the fairway. Just as he was about to chip out, he noticed a
3301long funeral procession going past on a nearby street. Reverently, George
3302removed his hat and stood at attention until the procession had passed.
3303Then he continued his game, finishing with a birdie on the eighteenth.
3304Later, at the clubhouse, a fellow golfer greet George. "Say, that was a
3305nice gesture you made today, George.
3306 "What do you mean?" asked George.
3307 "Well, it was nice of you to take off your cap and stand
3308respectfully when that funeral went by," the friend replied.
3309 "Oh, yes," said George. "Well, we were married 17 years, you
3310know."
3311%
3312 "Seven years and six months!" Humpty Dumpty repeated thoughtfully.
3313"An uncomfortable sort of age. Now if you'd asked MY advice, I'd have
3314said 'Leave off at seven' -- but it's too late now."
3315 "I never ask advice about growing," Alice said indignantly.
3316 "Too proud?" the other enquired.
3317 Alice felt even more indignant at this suggestion. "I mean,"
3318she said, "that one can't help growing older."
3319 "ONE can't, perhaps," said Humpty Dumpty; "but TWO can. With
3320proper assistance, you might have left off at seven."
3321 -- Lewis Carroll, "Through the Looking-Glass"
3322%
3323 Several students were asked to prove that all odd integers are prime.
3324 The first student to try to do this was a math student. "Hmmm...
3325Well, 1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, and by induction, we have that all
3326the odd integers are prime."
3327 The second student to try was a man of physics who commented, "I'm not
3328sure of the validity of your proof, but I think I'll try to prove it by
3329experiment." He continues, "Well, 1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, 7 is
3330prime, 9 is... uh, 9 is... uh, 9 is an experimental error, 11 is prime, 13
3331is prime... Well, it seems that you're right."
3332 The third student to try it was the engineering student, who responded,
3333"Well, to be honest, actually, I'm not sure of your answer either. Let's
3334see... 1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, 7 is prime, 9 is... uh, 9 is...
3335well, if you approximate, 9 is prime, 11 is prime, 13 is prime... Well, it
3336does seem right."
3337 Not to be outdone, the computer science student comes along and says
3338"Well, you two sort've got the right idea, but you'll end up taking too long!
3339I've just whipped up a program to REALLY go and prove it." He goes over to
3340his terminal and runs his program. Reading the output on the screen he says,
3341"1 is prime, 1 is prime, 1 is prime, 1 is prime..."
3342%
3343 "Sheriff, we gotta catch Black Bart."
3344 "Oh, yeah? What's he look like?"
3345 "Well, he's wearin' a paper hat, a paper shirt, paper pants and
3346paper boots."
3347 "What's he wanted for?"
3348 "Rustling."
3349%
3350 Sixtus V, Pope from 1585 to 1590 authorized a printing of the
3351Vulgate Bible. Taking no chances, the pope issued a papal bull
3352automatically excommunicating any printer who might make an alteration
3353in the text. This he ordered printed at the beginning of the Bible.
3354He personally examined every sheet as it came off the press. Yet the
3355published Vulgate Bible contained so many errors that corrected scraps
3356had to be printed and pasted over them in every copy. The result
3357provoked wry comments on the rather patchy papal infallibility, and
3358Pope Sixtus had no recourse but to order the return and destruction of
3359every copy.
3360%
3361 So Richard and I decided to try to catch [the small shark]. With
3362a great deal of strategy and effort and shouting, we managed to maneuver
3363the shark, over the course of about a half-hour, to a sort of corner of the
3364lagoon, so that it had no way to escape other than to flop up onto the land
3365and evolve. Richard and I were inching toward it, sort of crouched over,
3366when all of a sudden it turned around and -- I can still remember the
3367sensation I felt at that moment, primarily in the armpit area -- headed
3368right straight toward us.
3369 Many people would have panicked at this point. But Richard and I
3370were not "many people." We were experienced waders, and we kept our heads.
3371We did exactly what the textbook says you should do when you're unarmed and
3372a shark that is nearly two feet long turns on you in water up to your lower
3373calves: We sprinted I would say 600 yards in the opposite direction, using
3374a sprinting style such that the bottoms of our feet never once went below
3375the surface of the water. We ran all the way to the far shore, and if we
3376had been in a Warner Brothers cartoon we would have run right INTO the beach,
3377and you would have seen these two mounds of sand racing across the island
3378until they bonked into trees and coconuts fell onto their heads.
3379 -- Dave Barry, "The Wonders of Sharks on TV"
3380%
3381 So Richard and I decided to try to catch [the small shark].
3382With a great deal of strategy and effort and shouting, we managed to
3383maneuver the shark, over the course of about a half-hour, to a sort of
3384corner of the lagoon, so that it had no way to escape other than to
3385flop up onto the land and evolve. Richard and I were inching toward
3386it, sort of crouched over, when all of a sudden it turned around and --
3387I can still remember the sensation I felt at that moment, primarily in
3388the armpit area -- headed right straight toward us.
3389 Many people would have panicked at this point. But Richard and
3390I were not "many people." We were experienced waders, and we kept our
3391heads. We did exactly what the textbook says you should do when you're
3392unarmed and a shark that is nearly two feet long turns on you in water
3393up to your lower calves: We sprinted I would say 600 yards in the
3394opposite direction, using a sprinting style such that the bottoms of
3395our feet never once went below the surface of the water. We ran all
3396the way to the far shore, and if we had been in a Warner Brothers
3397cartoon we would have run right INTO the beach, and you would have seen
3398these two mounds of sand racing across the island until they bonked
3399into trees and coconuts fell onto their heads.
3400 -- Dave Barry, "The Wonders of Sharks on TV"
3401%
3402 Some 1500 miles west of the Big Apple we find the Minneapple, a
3403haven of tranquility in troubled times. It's a good town, a civilized town.
3404A town where they still know how to get your shirts back by Thursday. Let
3405the Big Apple have the feats of "Broadway Joe" Namath. We have known the
3406stolid but steady Killebrew. Listening to Cole Porter over a dry martini
3407may well suit those unlucky enough never to have heard the Whoopee John Polka
3408Band and never to have shared a pitcher of 3.2 Grain Belt Beer. The loss is
3409theirs. And the Big Apple has yet to bake the bagel that can match peanut
3410butter on lefse. Here is a town where the major urban problem is dutch elm
3411disease and the number one crime is overtime parking. We boast more theater
3412per capita than the Big Apple. We go to see, not to be seen. We go even
3413when we must shovel ten inches of snow from the driveway to get there. Indeed
3414the winters are fierce. But then comes the marvel of the Minneapple summer.
3415People flock to the city's lakes to frolic and rejoice at the sight of so
3416much happy humanity free from the bonds of the traditional down-filled parka.
3417Here's to the Minneapple. And to its people. Our flair for style is balanced
3418by a healthy respect for wind chill factors.
3419 And we always, always eat our vegetables.
3420 This is the Minneapple.
3421%
3422 Something mysterious is formed, born in the silent void. Waiting
3423alone and unmoving, it is at once still and yet in constant motion. It is
3424the source of all programs. I do not know its name, so I will call it the
3425Tao of Programming.
3426 If the Tao is great, then the operating system is great. If the
3427operating system is great, then the compiler is great. If the compiler is
3428greater, then the applications is great. The user is pleased and there is
3429harmony in the world.
3430 The Tao of Programming flows far away and returns on the wind of
3431morning.
3432 -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
3433%
3434 Somewhat alarmed at the continued growth of the number of employees
3435on the Department of Agriculture payroll in 1962, Michigan Republican Robert
3436Griffin proposed an amendment to the farm bill so that "the total number of
3437employees in the Department of Agriculture at no time exceeds the number of
3438farmers in America."
3439 -- Bill Adler, "The Washington Wits"
3440%
3441 "Somewhere", said Father Vittorini, "did Blake not speak of the
3442Machineries of Joy? That is, did not God promote environments, then
3443intimidate these Natures by provoking the existence of flesh, toy men and
3444women, such as are we all? And thus happily sent forth, at our best, with
3445good grace and fine wit, on calm noons, in fair climes, are we not God's
3446Machineries of Joy?"
3447 "If Blake said that", said Father Brian, "he never lived in Dublin."
3448 -- R. Bradbury, "The Machineries of Joy"
3449%
3450 Split 1/4 bottle .187 liters
3451 Half 1/2 bottle
3452 Bottle 750 milliliters
3453 Magnum 2 bottles 1.5 liters
3454 Jeroboam 4 bottles
3455 Rehoboam 6 bottles Not available in the US
3456 Methuselah 8 bottles
3457 Salmanazar 12 bottles
3458 Balthazar 16 bottles
3459 Nebuchadnezzar 20 bottles 15 liters
3460 Sovereign 34 bottles 26 liters
3461
3462 The Sovereign is a new bottle, made for the launching of the
3463largest cruise ship in the world. The bottle alone cost 8,000 dollars
3464to produce and they only made 8 of them.
3465 Most of the funny names come from Biblical people.
3466%
3467 Stop! Whoever crosseth the bridge of Death, must answer first
3468these questions three, ere the other side he see!
3469
3470 "What is your name?"
3471 "Sir Brian of Bell."
3472 "What is your quest?"
3473 "I seek the Holy Grail."
3474 "What are four lowercase letters that are not legal flag arguments
3475to the Berkeley UNIX version of `ls'?"
3476 "I, er.... AIIIEEEEEE!"
3477%
3478 Strange memories on this nervous night in Las Vegas. Five years later?
3479Six? It seems like a lifetime, or at least a Main Era -- the kind of peak that
3480never comes again. San Francisco in the middle sixties was a very special time
3481and place to be a part of. Maybe it meant something. Maybe not, in the long
3482run... There was madness in any direction, at any hour. If not across the
3483Bay, then up the Golden Gate or down 101 to Los Altos or La Honda... You could
3484strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we
3485were doing was right, that we were winning...
3486 And that, I think, was the handle -- that sense of inevitable victory
3487over the forces of Old and Evil. Not in any mean or military sense; we didn't
3488need that. Our energy would simply prevail. There was no point in fighting
3489-- on our side or theirs. We had all the momentum; we were riding the crest
3490of a high and beautiful wave. So now, less than five years later, you can go
3491up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes
3492you can almost see the high-water mark -- that place where the wave finally
3493broke and rolled back.
3494 -- Hunter S. Thompson
3495%
3496 Take the folks at Coca-Cola. For many years, they were content
3497to sit back and make the same old carbonated beverage. It was a good
3498beverage, no question about it; generations of people had grown up
3499drinking it and doing the experiment in sixth grade where you put a
3500nail into a glass of Coke and after a couple of days the nail dissolves
3501and the teacher says: "Imagine what it does to your TEETH!" So Coca-Cola
3502was solidly entrenched in the market, and the management saw no need to
3503improve ...
3504 -- Dave Barry, "In Search of Excellence"
3505%
3506 "That wife of mine is a liar," said the angry husband to a
3507sympathetic pal seated next to him in a bar.
3508 "How do you know?" the friend asked.
3509 "She didn't come home last night, and when I asked her where
3510she'd been she said she'd spent the night with her sister Shirley."
3511 "So?"
3512 "So, she's a liar. I spent the night with her sister Shirley."
3513%
3514 "That's right; the upper-case shift works fine on the screen, but
3515they're not coming out on the damn printer... Hold? Sure, I'll hold."
3516 -- e.e. cummings last service call
3517%
3518 "The best thing for being sad," replied Merlin, beginning to puff
3519and blow, "is to learn something. That's the only thing that never fails.
3520You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at
3521night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love,
3522you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your
3523honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for
3524it then -- to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is
3525the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be
3526tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning
3527is the only thing for you. Look what a lot of things there are to learn."
3528 -- T.H. White, "The Once and Future King"
3529%
3530 The big problem with pornography is defining it. You can't just
3531say it's pictures of people naked. For example, you have these primitive
3532African tribes that exist by chasing the wildebeest on foot, and they have
3533to go around largely naked, because, as the old tribal saying goes: "N'wam
3534k'honi soit qui mali," which means, "If you think you can catch a wildebeest
3535in this climate and wear clothes at the same time, then I have some beach
3536front property in the desert region of Northern Mali that you may be
3537interested in."
3538 So it's not considered pornographic when National Geographic publishes
3539color photographs of these people hunting the wildebeest naked, or pounding
3540one rock onto another rock for some primitive reason naked, or whatever.
3541But if National Geographic were to publish an article entitled "The Girls
3542of the California Junior College System Hunt the Wildebeest Naked," some
3543people would call it pornography. But others would not. And still others,
3544such as the Spectacularly Rev. Jerry Falwell, would get upset about seeing
3545the wildebeest naked.
3546 -- Dave Barry, "Pornography"
3547%
3548 The big problem with pornography is defining it. You can't just
3549say it's pictures of people naked. For example, you have these
3550primitive African tribes that exist by chasing the wildebeest on foot,
3551and they have to go around largely naked, because, as the old tribal
3552saying goes: "N'wam k'honi soit qui mali," which means, "If you think
3553you can catch a wildebeest in this climate and wear clothes at the same
3554time, then I have some beach front property in the desert region of
3555Northern Mali that you may be interested in."
3556 So it's not considered pornographic when National Geographic
3557publishes color photographs of these people hunting the wildebeest
3558naked, or pounding one rock onto another rock for some primitive reason
3559naked, or whatever. But if National Geographic were to publish an
3560article entitled "The Girls of the California Junior College System
3561Hunt the Wildebeest Naked," some people would call it pornography. But
3562others would not. And still others, such as the Spectacularly Rev.
3563Jerry Falwell, would get upset about seeing the wildebeest naked.
3564 -- Dave Barry, "Pornography"
3565%
3566 The birds are singing, the flowers are budding, and it is time
3567for Miss Manners to tell young lovers to stop necking in public.
3568 It's not that Miss Manners is immune to romance. Miss Manners
3569has been known to squeeze a gentleman's arm while being helped over a
3570curb, and, in her wild youth, even to press a dainty slipper against a
3571foot or two under the dinner table. Miss Manners also believes that the
3572sight of people strolling hand in hand or arm in arm or arm in hand
3573dresses up a city considerably more than the more familiar sight of
3574people shaking umbrellas at one another. What Miss Manners objects to
3575is the kind of activity that frightens the horses on the street...
3576%
3577 The boss returned from lunch in a good mood and called the whole staff
3578in to listen to a couple of jokes he had picked up. Everybody but one girl
3579laughed uproariously. "What's the matter?" grumbled the boss. "Haven't you
3580got a sense of humor?"
3581 "I don't have to laugh," she said. "I'm leaving Friday anyway.
3582%
3583 The defense attorney was hammering away at the plaintiff:
3584"You claim," he jeered, "that my client came at you with a broken bottle
3585in his hand. But is it not true, that you had something in YOUR hand?"
3586 "Yes," the man admitted, "his wife. Very charming, of course,
3587but not much good in a fight."
3588%
3589 The devout Jew was beside himself because his son had been dating
3590a shiksa, so he went to visit his rabbi. The rabbi listened solemnly to
3591his problem, took his hand, and said, "Pray to God."
3592 So the Jew went to the synagogue, bowed his head, and prayed, "God,
3593please help me. My son, my favorite son, he's going to marry a shiksa, he
3594sees nothing but goyim..."
3595 "Your son," boomed down this voice from the heavens, "you think
3596you got problems. What about my son?"