Punt/Counterpunt: #Selfie

punt-counterpuntThis is first in a new series of posts I’m calling Punt/Counterpunt. In this provocative new regular feature, I tackle the tough societal issues of the day. Issues that we all see staring down the barrel. To help, I humbly offer my insights in short miroblogging nuggets of wisdom. -Ed.

The Selfie

With the inclusion of the word “selfie” in the Oxford Dictionary the time has come for me to punt on this topic. Warning: Don’t ever ever Google Image Search this word, like in case you are preparing to write a blog post about the topic. Your eyes will burn and roll down your face like jelly in a George R. R. Martin novel.

You have been warned.

And now, without further ado, the puntage:

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Driven to distraction

Thelma and Louise. Updated.

Thelma and Louise. Updated.

It has been too long since I blogged about driving. I must have been distracted. Well, no more. Hang on. I’m putting it in “L” for “Lunge.” (Like dad used to say.)

You want to kill me? I want to kill you? Fine. We’re gonna settle this once and for all the way nature intended. We’re gonna settle it on the streets. Let’s race.

Psst. Hey, buddy. Wanna buy a road-based transportation system? This baby is state-of-the-art. It’s the absolute finest this planet has to offer. And it only kills +32,000 people per year and injures over two million more. And that’s in the United States alone.

Wow. That does sound great. I’ll take it!

Excuse me. I have to take this call. Okay, I’m back. What were we talking about again? Look out! We’re about to hit that … uh oh.

90 percent of drivers rate their own driving skill as “above average.” They can’t all be right, can they? It turns out that 99.9% of the 90% are delusional idiots.

I, however, can successfully claim to be among the best of the best on the road. I am automotive elite. No, I’m not bragging. It’s not bragging when it’s a fact. And what makes me so special? Only I have the arcane knowledge of the ancients that serves me in the field of battle when I’m driving a car.

Because I like you, I’ll tell you what it is. I’m even going to tell you for free even though this simple trick is worth millions. The arcane secret of being the best in a car is … hey, where are you going? I’m unloading guru wisdom here. Eyes on me.

Pay attention!
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The 89 Cent Solution

goldSome refer to sugary soda beverages as “liquid candy.” I say they’re wrong. It’s liquid gold. “There’s gold in them thar self-serve dispensers!”

The history of soda portions is super-sized fun. When introduced by McDonalds in 1955, a cup of soda weighed 7 oz. By 2012, however, a 12-ounce soda was considered “kid’s size.” McDonalds, Wendy’s and Burger King all rolled out 42 ounce size single-serving potions called, respectively: Supersize, Great Biggie, and King Size. Since, then, however, those paltry portions have been dwarfed by the Mega Jug at KFC (64 oz), the Beast at ARCO (85 oz), HuMUGous at Kum & Go (100 oz) and the Team Gulp at 7-Eleven (128 oz).

Are you noticing a trend yet? Your keen scientist brains should already be extrapolating future results. My linear regression line indicates that by 2042 a single-serving size will be approximately the capacity of a backyard swimming pool. I call this the LaGrange Point of Soda Evolution. We’ll have achieved something truly special when we’re actually able to swim in our serving sizes.

The point is: We’re a thirsty lot.

With all this in mind, a construction worker name Christopher Lewis of North Charleston recently was having lunch at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center in Charleston, S.C. He went to the self-serve soda dispenser and got himself a soda refill. And, by doing so, prompted an improbable chain of events that has irrevocably changed the face of law enforcement as we know it. It makes the Twinkie Defense look like child’s play.

Behold the power of liquid candy.
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BlogFestivus – Day Eight: The Reindeer Before Easter

shoutabyss:

Hope you have a bunny good Easter, laddies and lassies.

Originally posted on Shouts from the Abyss:

blogfestivus-20122 The Reindeer Before Easter
by Tom B. Taker

Blixem was melancholy. Another winter and it was the same old thing. A whole year of preparing for one crazy night. He was in a rut deep enough to hang Christmas stockings. He wandered aimlessly away from Christmas Town followed by his pet, Hooman.

He trudged all night without purpose through the snow until he found himself in a forest. Then, at dawn, he stumbled into a strange grove of trees. They were arranged in a circle and each contained a door with a mysterious symbol.

“What’s this?” Blixen said. “It’s someplace new!”

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Skater adamant he didn’t pee in to-be-flushed Portland reservoir

shoutabyss:

Tom doesn’t think Dallas is dumb because he peed in the water. Tom thinks Dallas is dumb because Dallas talks about himself in the third-person. That’s just weird, man. And why isn’t the headline for this story “Dallas Pisses In Portland’s Water,” because that has a much more sinister ring to it. Why does Dallas hate Portland? Is it because we serve more kale and have more FPC (Fedoras Per Capita) than any city in the United States? With this latest flush of 38 million gallons, Portland breaks it’s own record of 7.5 million gallons in the same reservoir. Me? I’m not understanding the science. I mean, don’t ducks poop in that water? What the hell are they doing about that? Duck poop good, teenager pee bad. Personally I think the punishment should fit the crime. I would have made Dallas drink the water. All of it.

Originally posted on PIX 11:

FRANCE-THEME-WATER

Water meant to reach residents’ taps will instead be discarded after a teenager was caught urinating into a Portland reservoir. (Photo: Getty Images)

PORTLAND, Ore. (PIX11) – A skater accused of urinated in a Portland reservoir forcing city water officials to dump 38 million gallons of drinking water admits he answered nature’s call near the reservoir, but definitely did not pee in the water.

That’s according to an exclusive, expletive-laden interview by Vocativ with teen.

“Everybody thinks it’s funny and a joke and I’m going to be on the news,” Dallas Swonger told the digital newsgathering operation.

“It’s no f—in’ joke, dude. I don’t want people thinkin’ that Dallas is dumb ass because he pissed in the f—in’ water. In our drinking water. Yeah, that’s f—ing awesome. I mean, wouldn’t you be pissed about that?”

Vocativ reports that Swanson had recently moved back to Portland and was skateboarding with…

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Airlocket Sonnet with my Easter Bonnet

Credit: Neil Armstrong/NASA

Credit: Neil Armstrong/NASA

Today I offer a simple space sonnet dedicated to me and you.

Imagine that we are standing together in an airlock. The situation is obvious. Between us and the cold reality of space is a door. And on the wall is a button. It’s the button. You know, the one that controls the door.

Let’s explore the possibilities together. Think of it like a cakewalk in space.

  1. I have helmet, you do not: This one’s a no-brainer. I push the button. I mean, how often does life provide a chance like this? You have to take it. Space is incredibly empty. I hope you enjoy the irony that it’s about to contain your brains.
  2. You have a helmet, I do not: You just love having one over on me, don’t you? Quite simply life isn’t worth living knowing that you have something that I do not. I push the button. I hope you can live with yourself, you helmet-owning bastard.
  3. Neither of us has a helmet: Now this is quite the pickle. What to do, what to do? Ultimately, and don’t take this personally, but I’ll squeak out some famous last words about gooses and ganders and then pound that button with style and flair. Because, you and I are going to be hanging out for a while.
  4. Both of us have a helmet: Sigh. This is all so tedious and pointless, isn’t it? Sure, I could push the button, but so what? What does it matter? Nothing would change. It’s not even worth the damn effort. It just makes me angry. So I’m not pushing anything. Do what you want. I don’t care.

By the way, according to Wikipedia, a space suit costs $12 million USD and has a mass of 47 pounds (21 kg) without the life support backpack, but how much fun is that? That might seem expensive for just one suit but remember: It comes with two pairs of pants*.

*A very old José Jiménez joke.

The China Threat

The Chinese army participates in "digital war games."

The Chinese army participates in “digital war games.”

I’m a webmaster and programmer by trade. Part of my job duties involve administration of the company’s web server. As such, I do my absolute best to block all traffic from China.

Why? Because of the hacking that originates there. There’s not a day that goes by where some automated script isn’t attacking my server, and most of it originates in China. I’m not saying it’s state-sponsored, but on the other hand, there doesn’t seem any official effort to stop it, either. Perhaps it’s a matter of calculated indifference, which I surmise is a close cousin to plausible deniability.

The Great Firewall of China blocks a lot of content from the Chinese people, but it decidedly does not block shit like this aimed at other countries:
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