Negative Ode

I have never liked week out. Back when I was a kid I found weekends to be a VERY mixed bag. On the one hand there were some enjoyable things, like not having to waste time in shule (or, at least, uneducational shule,- shule was pretty much largely tedious slowness of information, rather a lot of mindless regimentation, and periodic terror of spelling tests-) and there were better programs on the television than during the week, especially Science Fiction Theater and the obligatory saturday evening 1950’s fear-the-bomb movie.

But the downside was that schedule was disrupted. Bad as shule was for boredom, at least it was reasonably predictable. The only real uncertainty was whether one would be picked on by student bullies – other students who amused themselves by playing no-win games at the nerds – or educationalist bullies – the administrators and faculty who amused themselves by playing no-win games at the students. But the weekend was less predictable. It might be disrupted with time wasting, like having to accompany father to have one’s hair trimmed, a harrowing experience because of the condescension of the barbers and the reality that no questions could be asked about new vocabulary obtained. This was the 1950’s and some questions could not be asked and would be punished if they were asked. But we 1950’s nerds do understand why humans are so fundamentally whacked.

And there was sundae. Unless one of the parents was ill, one had to get up, attire in highly uncomfortable clothes, and attend services. The latter included a “sundae shule” that was even less information dense than regular shule and utterly devoid of meaningful explanation. Question were always condescended to and never proper. About half were punishable with corporeal means. And one was not supposed to nap even though that was clearly the only reasonable possibility given the whacked sociality.

And the fooding was altered both in schedule and nature. Starting on friday evening through sundae evening meals were not only less well scheduled but of different composition. Why, one might even eat in a restaurant or at a picnic. And parents never did get the relationship between diet and nightmares.

When I became an adult, weekends retained their polarity. Yes, I rather liked not having a schedule that did not respond to my illnesses and sleep shortages, but that absence of schedule was also unpleasant. Too many mundane errands to be performed, although some did offer opportunities to witness the foolishness of bogs. Ad in the early days of adulthood there was the dichotomy of dating, an intensely unsatisfactory, abrasive activity for most nerds.

Nowadays, as a senior, I still dislike weekends. The absence of regularity is no longer just mentally annoying, it is actually physically uncomfortable. And the relaxation of all the boggish instrumentality abets this. The chief problem is that the errands are gone. An unexpected consequence, it seems, of being retired and doing errands during weekmiddle.

So weekends are nasty and painful and probably necessary.

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The good and the ungood

Survived both the expedition to Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill and the end of the exercise week. In fact, the gym was rather pleasantly vacant this morning. There was one weight bouncer who was also a screamer but he arrived just shortly before I departed and the noise was more amusing than annoying for that brief period. Noise is alien in those quarters early in morning, always a bit of an irritant. Usually it is educationalists whose arrogance is such that they are ultimately confident their loudness will be ignored and not overheard, both of which are as fallacious as their teaching, I should opine. But weight bouncers who scream are rare and one always wonders if this is, as is claimed, indication of their unwanted celibacy and inability to attract even old, ugly, drunken women.

One which note I ran across an article [Link] in the Register about how the English don’t like to pay for smartphone apps. It seems that 0.73 of the sample population feel that for-pay apps are either too expensive or unaffordable period. The latter seems a bit incongrous given the costs of instrument and monthly service. But I suppose one must be careful in making such assessments because apps tend to be like peanuts, especially like a barrel of peanuts that is largely bad. One can’t help putting them in one’s mouth even if most are spat out immediately upon tasting.

I fear that is my outlook – and experience – with smartphone apps. The app stores are abysmal compared to their Linux equivalents, and I find that I try a lot of apps and reject almost all of them as hideously flawed. Flawed not by the obnoxity of advertsiing, but in the abysmal failure to do what I expect of such an app. Too many are rather like the first european import cars in the 1950’s. Lacking things like heaters and roll down windows and even radios. Even the original volkswagen beetle lacked a petrol gauge.

I suspect I am spoiled by the Linux coding culture, or have become distanced from the Winders environment. I have come to expect FOSS clients to be very good, very capable, and very logical in a coder fashion, unlike Winders clients that seem to be developed to be as illogical, ungood, and uncapable as possible. There are exceptions but they are generally the clients intended for nerds. Then, of course, all FOSS clients may be a bit nerdy, which has the advantage of scaring off the bogs who would likely pollute the OS like they do national parks.

I do admit to some parallels. For example, there are certain types of clients, functionality-wise, that are multiply, very multiply, represented. But almost all of these are very good and one is merely searching for that which is personally best. When RSSOWL doesn;t work I can fall back on Liferea (e.g.,) in a few minutes with more than an 0.95 satisfaction level. I wish I could say the same for LaTeX editor/compiler but that’s the rare exception that validates the rule.

But the android app stores are not this way, or I should say the android clients are not. Most, at least the free-of-cost ones, are ungood and one can’t tell how much until they are installed. The app stores are not very honest or forthcoming in useful information. All this indicates that (a) android is for bogs and (b) if the free-of-cost apps are this way, why ever buy an app if the probability is o(0.8) that it will be money wasted?

All of which indicates that maybe what was seen in England isn’t particularly an English thing but a human thing?

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Twinkie Politics

Nice morning. Rainy in a sort of desultory fashion. Just the right mood setter for winter. And now that we are settled down to the usual grrr brrr of politics and money and tyranny there is news, or, at least, articles, bubbling out again. One of the things that I have encountered are articles analyzing the results of the recent chief executive election.[Link] These fall into two major categories: democruds talking about how they are vindicated and validated in their feudalism of social engineering and ‘justice’, an odious mixture of the imprecise and the subjective; and repulsians admitting that they vertically copulated but asserting that they are still fundamentally right in their classic capitalist feudalism and will make cosmetic changes to recover the elections two years hence.

Neither is convincing. I still maintain that the fundamental problem is politics and parties. More than half of the American electorate is now part of the excluded middle whose ideas and desires fit neither party but because of the partisan dictatorship of the process have to pick one or the other to check the box on election day. Whether the parties realize this is unclear. There is too much posturing and maskarovka. In this case it was the democruds whose program was the lesser undesirable of the two, both in terms of burdens on the taxpayer and the so-called leadership.

On a more positive note, the church of Rome has finally taken some steps to publically admit that they stole solstice. [Link] The bishop of Rome’s latest book seems, at least according to the journalists, to admit the Joshua ben Joseph wasn’t born on the twenty-fifth of december in the year one CE. Now perhaps we can recover the real significance of winter solstice and celebrate someone whose birthday was on that date.

Oscillating back the other way, this was followed by an article about why Hostess flopped. [Link] In many ways, it is indistinguishable from the political pieces. It claims that the problem was changes in Amerikan eating habits and the obesity pogrom. Sounds altogether plausible except that it ignores the sales figures were not down by 0.5 but maybe 0.1. Another whitewash job for the capitalist pirates who gutted the company and pushed it over the edge. Rather like politicians?

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Slave Masters of Amerika

One of my colleagues, Magnetic-Electric Field Coupling, pointed me to a rather difficult article;[Link]

  • J.C. Penney, Sears
  • Olive Garden, LongHorn Steakhouse, Red Lobster, Applebee’s and IHOP
  • Wendy’s,  Panera Bread Co., Chipotle Mexican Grill, Burger King, Subway, McDonald’s, Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC
  • Bloomingdales and Macy’s
  • Starbucks
  • Target, Wal-Mart.

These are the companies who pay their employees the least and generally use force and intimidation to dissuade them from joining unions.

Think about that the next time you buy something from one of these companies. How does that feel ethically? Morally? Do you really want to save a little money by harming other people?