Reflections of Failed Mediocrity

Five Day and shuck of gym. I am experimenting with extending my visits to five per week and this has been the first full week of that number. The only down was my lack of adequate podcast planning. Today was ad hoc and a bit sad.

Otherwise, I note that this has been a wonderful for corporate terrorism. Largely in the cellular telephone environment. Specifically:

  1. Samsung has successfully deployed a million Improvised Pyrotechnic Devices (IPDs aha Fire Bombs) making them the most successful terrorist organization yet and bringing new meaning of second rate to Al Quaida and ISI?; and
  2. Apple has introduced a tepid telephone that offers to replace a $5 pair of ear buds with a $160 pair of earbuds. Makes the monopolists of the Nineteenth century look humanitarian.

Elsewhere, the nation remains bent on rapidly Making Amerika A Failure, mostly through idiotic politics.

On to the daily misery!


Summer Torture

Yesterday I ran across this cartoon: [Link]

which brought back all sorts of unpleasant memories. These memories can be aggregated under one name: Organizational Picnic. A useful, effective synonym is Day-From-Tartarus. Also Punishment-Of-The-Membership.

One of the useful tricks I found was to schedule a dummy physician’s appointment on the last working day prior to the picnic. Then one could claim illness or tests or whatever.

The primary problem was too many EXTRO Bogs. Picnics are fine for INTROs if they are off by themselves. Organizational picnics are too many people in too small an area. Sort of like a slaughter pit.

I was tasked once to be on the organizing committee. My first action was to make a motion to cancel the picnic. Thereafter I could claim conflict and avoid the committee meetings. 

Bad as these are, however, they are nowhere near as horrible as management offsites. 

More than Memory

Mundane day. Also the holy day of Memorial. We are supposed to exalt the memory of those who have been slain in battle. At least the ones wearing uniforms. The non-soldiers are not relevant here. 

It’s a very misused holy day. As originally construed it was all about the second American revolution, the so-called American civil war. In those days everyone who served was either a volunteer (at least on the Confederate side) or accepted a bribe to substitute for someone who was being enslaved. That’s one of the contradictions of this war. The Union – Yankee – side had to compel some men to serve. And since the war is propagandized as being all about ending slavery in Amerika, forcing men to serve in the army – itself a form of slavery – is somehow compromising and contradictory. Of course there were also social compulsions on both sides, but supposedly – and we shall never know for sure otherwise – most of those who served were volunteers.

And honoring those who felt strongly enough to die in combat for their ideal – Nawth or Sowth – is laudable.

Perhaps it is. I can see two sides. Yes, organization has its benefits. Civilization and all that. And we’re going to die anyway so why not do so in a rush of endocrine secretions? Of course, one can ask why one should die for a parasite? That’s what organizations are. They take substance and put it to other uses. Including their own continuance. So there is an overhead. Thermodynamics applies.

The rationale for organization is that it benefits the members of the organizations. Is killing them a benefit? Maybe if they are discorporating of some horrible, painful disease, but does life qualify as such? So if organizations are beholding to us for their existence and are selfish in the process, just what and how much dedication do they deserve from us? 

I admire that those who died, at least purely idealistically, believed enough in their organization to discorporate for it. I am not sure about their rationality, however.


Back to week in. Air temperatures up a bit and aerosols present enough to be heavy haze. Of course the weather beavers are prattling about fawg totally ignoring the definition of such. The shortest visibility I saw on their chart was 0.75 (Imperial) mile which is 1.2 kilometer and thereby a bogfail!

The podcast was a CBC "Best of Ideas" episode featuring some address by a Canadian provincial children’s rights appointee on, you guessed it, children’s rights and wrongs, as in how government treats Amerindian children. I can’t speak for Canadia, but I can offer that it is the policy of the Yankee republic to repress and enslave all of its electorate and future electorate. Certainly the recent government funding bill enacted by the congress is more about helping the Capitalist Cancer than taking care of citizenry. I was struck by this as a parallel to the government of Greater Metropolitan Arab which is controlled by real estate agents for whom current residents are irrelevant – except as cash cows – and potential residents are the focus of all efforts.

While on this mutual antithesis I came across this cartoon; [Link]

which epitomizes so many situations in our society: the two governmental ones just mentioned and the current demonstrations about police violence and profiling.

Plague of Bad

Into week out and no great joy in sight. FD SCP informs me we have duty tonight as dog sitters. Gad, I do dislike mammoth canines. At least they haven’t tusks nor trunks. And the weather continues pelting. We seemed to have five or six showers yesterday whose only advantage was that I didn’t have to water the new trees.

A fairly pleasant constitutional although the podcast was a bit yuck. I suppose it is the podcasters angst spilling over onto my own.

Not much this morning. A couple of cartoons. First, [Link]

that I found yesterday. Yesterday was a good day for cartoons. I find myself appreciating this cartoon. I used to have a couple of employees who were of scant value but firing them was too much trouble. So they got sent to every meeting no one else wanted to attend. And they never got promoted, but we were always happy when they applied for a job – elsewhere.

The horrible thing is that they were quite understandable. Fewer and fewer jobs these days are actually fun or even rewarding. They are drudge necessities of life. And with organizations being so self-centered and greedy, no loyalty exists in either direction.

The other one [Link]

is about my life. All too often these days are bad head day. They say that when you get to be a manager you have to submit to surgery to destroy parts of your brain. Well, when you retire you have to accept a lot of bad head days.

This one is a gem. It speaks to a lot more than this cartoon usually rises to. But it isn’t a dream, waking or otherwise. It’s a fully fledged daymare.

, , ,

OS Angst

Not bad so far. The weight bouncers were a bit overbearing and menacing this morning but otherwise gym was passable. The weather is no too bad and the podcast, an episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” was about the arguments over the history of the Vietnam conflict and was amusing in its political maneuverings if nothing else. But I still feel a bit like I was beaten with a cudgel.

This is the time – evidently – of OS angst. I ran across an article [Link] in the Register about how MegaHard is going to divorce itself from the disaster that is W8 by ceasing to support the first version of the OS, the one without the START button. They just cut the cord on WXP – except for those who are willing to pay large sums for continued support, like the Yankee government’s Internal Revenue “Service” – and now they are cutting the cord on a year (?) old OS, their supposedly best and newest? Do they intend to just get out of the OS business and leave that to Fruit, Gooey, and the League of Free Software? Nah!, they;re too greedy and venial for that.

On which azimuth, I came across a rather strange article [Link] entitled “Are Windows Users Disappointed When They First Try a Linux OS?” The title is evidently motivated by the question:

“why aren’t the disgruntled or bored Windows users fleeing by the millions to Linux?”

which is presumably motivated by the perception that not enough disgruntled WXP (redundant?) users aren’t embracing some distro of Linux as avidly as meat lovers the Atkins diet? I suspect the author assumes a higher demographic fraction of rationals among WXP users than realists do. Or that some article was needed as filler and come-on. It is after all, short and a bit sensationalist, even for modern journalists.

First of all, I rather gave up on evangelizing Winders users to Linux a long time ago. Like most evangelism it is more likely to fail resoundingly than to be successful, and that the success are usually due to rational rather than nutjob arguments. Which few evangelists can manifest. The rational that is. Evangelism, be it OS or religion, is mostly about fanaticism and the evangelist and not the product nor the recipient. So I wait for someone to ask. And convince me that they are going to give the OS a real try. Bimbos, of either gender, need not apply.

Having said that, and installed – usually – one of the WXP look alikes, I can report that new users all express disappointment. Most of that expression has to do ultimately with learning something new. It is in the nature of MegaHard and Winders to condition users not to learn. That’s one of the reasons that W8 was such a resounding failure. MegaHard did a foot shoot, with a recoilless rifle! That’s one of the reasons it’s nice that WXP is so tolerant of parallel installs of Linux.

Some of those who get this far regress but most progress and adapt and LEARN, stumbling mostly with the difference in update and install philosophies/procedures to a new stage of disappointment, disappointment that Winders could have be so much better. So those who do adopt, not just try, Linux are usually satisfied and much better users than they were with Winders. And that is good. Quality is often better than quantity and this is one of those cases. Leave the slime mold users to winders, or even fruit or gooey. We should be happy with a “band of brothers”.  And sisters. Which raises the question of why more female users are rationals than male users?

, , , ,

Forcesless Biology?

Humor abounds! But you’ll have to put up with an explanation. I belong to a professional organization for science researchers named Sigma Xi. It used to be an honor society back when such were not politically incorrect and because it lacks integrity and honesty, the organization caved and ceased billing itself as such. They send out a daily newsletter. [Link] The newsletter includes a “relevant” quote and today’s is:

About the only thing that comes to us without effort is old age.
— Gloria Pitzer, American writer

Now, we look at our dictionary for the defintion of effort:

effort:  (technical) a force exerted by a machine or in a process.

It is impossible to live for any period of time longer than about a second without exerting force.

So one cannot live without exerting force and hence cannot live to “old age” without doing so.

I have to admit to not being familiar with the author and what is said likely makes sense in some boggish context, perhaps even geekisn, but NOT nerdish. In fact it is foolish and hence a matter of humor.

, ,