July 2013


The following is a selection of “notable quotes” deposited by a spambot. They appear to have been translated from English to Chinese English, and they are delicious.

    People who help make peaceful emerging trend impossible is likely to make violent trend expected.
    John Fahrenheit Kennedy

John Fahrenheit Kennedy: the temperature at which Marilyn Monroe burns.

    A person’s someone, regardless of the way tiny.
    Dr. Seuss

Can’t argue with that.

    Resist significantly. Observe minors.
    Walt Whitman

Okay, that’s just a little creepy there, Walt.

    Thou shalt dilemma everything; there’s nothing preceding difficult task.
    The minute Commandment involving the almighty Galen

I had no idea that the physician Galen (129-216 AD) was worshiped as a god, let alone that he issued commandments!

    University boards these days get on them selves to increase his or her assignment well further than knowledge.
    John Gary Roberts, Gigantic Court docket

Don’t mess with Justice Roberts or his Gigantic Court. They will crush you.

    Nine Mine Citadel : Consequently all around getting neat, it can be alarming.
    Coalition In Opposition to Institutionalized Little One Misuse

Far be it for me to disagree with the Council and be accused of supporting institutionalized little one misuse, but I have no idea what the Nine Mine Citadel is. Maybe it’s a secret nexus for underground, and institutionalized, little one misuse?

    In the modern society in which it is a moral offense for being totally different from ones neighbors your merely avoid is never to let these learn.
    Robert Some Sort of Heinlein

I’m not sure what Robert was onto here, but I do agree that he was some sort of Heinlein.

    Practically nothing to all the entire world is a lot more hazardous than honest lack of knowledge along with careful silliness.
    Dr. Martin Luther Master, Jr.

Cold, calculated, careful silliness is a thousand times more hazardous than the ordinary kind, for sure.

    The man whom says very little is best knowledgeable compared to guy which flows only newspaper publishers.
    Thomas Jefferson

Yeah, it seems like newspapers publishers aren’t flowing much of anywhere these days, unless you count bankruptcy court.

    Of bad men spiritual bad men include the toughest.
    C. Utah Lewis, This Sterling Silver Lounge Chair

Wasn’t This Sterling Silver Lounge Chair that version of The Silver Chair modernized for the fast-paced world of the 1970s?

    Meaningful indignation: envy which has a halo.
    H. G. Water Wells

Not to be confused with his cousin H. G. Oil Wells.

    Folks really should not be scared of their authorities. Governments needs to be worried of these folks.
    V Regarding Vendetta

It’s like a folksy take on this story set in Maybury with Atticus Finch as V.

    In no way credit to help malice that will which may be sufficiently discussed by means of battiness.
    Hanlon’s Electric Shaver

Pretty sagacious for a piece of personal grooming equipment.

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The teacher announced his arrival by slamming the door hard enough to rattle Sirrap Community College’s exterior windows. Thirtysomthing and well-built, he sported thick black eyeglasses and an ill-fitting tweed suit coat with a Starfleet arrowhead as a tie tack. With the chap air conditioning struggling–and failing–to hold back the bitter South Carolina July raging outside, sweat beaded visibly on his dark features.

“Greetings. this is ENGL 127: Introduction to Creative Writing, and I am your instructor.” The pose he struck, legs spread and arms clasped behind his back, was textbook military. “Some of your husbands or fathers may know me as Drill Sergeant Poindexter from the base just up the road. They probably do not know me as a published author, perhaps because all my writing has been published under various pseudonyms! But if any of you have ever read The Girdle of Mistvale, credited to Swain Longbottom, or The Asteroids of Megas-Tu, credited to Jackson Roykirk, you’ve read me.”

There was some murmuring among the students but no reply.

“Repeat after me: “This is my pen. There are many like it, but this one is mine.”

Dutifully, fearfully, the students squeaked out the phrase.

“My pen, without me, is useless. Without my pen, I am useless. I must guide my pen true. I must write straighter than my enemy who is trying to critique me!”

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The message of the Servant was thus:

Let it be known that you can never fathom the motivations of the Godhead any more than the insects beneath your feet may fathom your own. It will manipulate and intervene in your affairs as it wills, whether for good or ill by your standards, all in service of goals that will never be aught but inscrutable. It considers itself to be acting in the best interests of all, but you well know that the farmer who drowns an anthill has the same opinion of his actions.

Unlike the ant, though, you are presented with a choice: live with the Godhead’s intervention and see your lives and world shaped according to its plan, or refuse its intervention. To refuse is to forever foreswear the Godhead’s intervention; you will not suffer its wrath but neither may you invoke its aid.

This choice is offered to you freely in trust to your peoples. You may consider it for one year. And, should you regret it, the choice will be offered anew a thousand years hence.

No chronicle or history records the decision of the Elders of old, whether they forsook the Godhead or acquiesced. But the thousand-year deadline approaches, and the question must again be asked, and answered.

And this riddle has defied the great sages of this time, or driven them mad with speculation and doubt. If the sages of old spurned the Godhead, leading to the disasters of the past thousand years, should its aid be invoked? Or, perhaps, were the horrors of those years the work of a divine hand, which should therefore be justly cast off?

No one knows; indeed, no one can know. And the hour of decision draws near.

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“I’m worried that Mitzy will keep growing,” said Maybelle-Sue. “She is already near the hard upper limit of 5’4″ for legacy sisters of Lambda Qoppa Delta.”

“Of course,” replied Yvette-Olivia. “That’s always the nightmare.

“And beyond that, if she gets much taller there’s a chance she could do…” Maybelle-Sue suppressed a shudder. “Sports. Sports other than cheerleading.”

“I had the same worry with Maddy.”

“But she is a perfect 5’3″!” cried Maybelle-Sue. “And your husband is 6’5″! What’s your secret?”

“Why, Stop-Gro™, of course!” Yvette-Olivia laughed.

“Stop-Gro™?”

“Most certainly. Mix a little in with everyday meals when Mitzy is within an inch of her ideal height, and it’ll stop her dead! All the Lamb Qops use it…didn’t you ever wonder why they were all exactly the same height despite a wide range of backgrounds and body types?” Yvette-Olivia handed Maybelle-Sue a tube of the stuff. “Hair can be dyed, lipo can be suctioned, rhino can by plasty-ed, but only Stop-Gro™ will get you that all-important perfect height, just above midget and well short of giraffe.”

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“They came out here at the ass-end of the recession and the oil crisis, plenty rich and plenty ambitious,” Crohn said, shouting to be heard over the whine of the De Haviland’s engines. “The whole Southern Cone was in the pocket of right-wing juntas back then, and they were see-no-evil outfits. You had the money, they had room for you.”

“Fascinating,” Kimber said, a little weary from the latter’s constant lecturing during what had turned out to be a three-hour flight.

“It helped that the place they chose was in Patagonia, which doesn’t have much population density even if you count the sheep, and it was even more deserted back then,” continued Crohn, obliviously. “The road was and still is a muddy two-track; most of their stuff had to be flown in to the airstrip. They dammed a river to provide electricity and started raising sheep and wheat.”

Kimber nodded, wondering how Crohn was able to shout for such extended periods of time without going hoarse. Through the window, the absurd view of a grain elevator next to a large red American-style barn was visible. SETTLEMENT OF NEW INDUSTRY was written on the barn’s roof in reflective paint, though only in English.

“They built the place up pretty well, but it’s way down from the peak population. Probably no more than 150, 200 people left…just barely enough to run things.”

As the De Haviland came in for its landing, Kimber could see a small city laid out on a grid, its houses built of stone and wood in the early-to-mid century style. Remembering Crohn’s lecture about the artistic and aesthetic opinions of the founders, who saw themselves as leaving behind the sterile and mass-produced design style of the oil crisis era, Kimber was able to pick out a lot of ornamental detail…and very few places that still seemed to be inhabited.

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When people are angry, they tend to overlook small details.

The other day, for instance, I was so angry at unannounced road construction making me late for work that I blitzed into the first available spot that I saw without looking, even though it was across campus from where I usually park.

My car was only there for an hour before I got a polite but firm phone call asking me to move it. It had a big fat ticket pasted to the windshield by the downpour I’d had to walk through, too. Ordinarily I’d fight the ticket, or at least try to weasel out of it, but that wasn’t going to work this time.

I’d parked in a space reserved for parking enforcement, after all.

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As the revelations of old were borne on the wings of angels
The prophecies of now come on swift digital wings
We can only hope
They are not so fickle
As the messengers of old

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1970 – The Home Renovation Show, 11:30am Tuesdays on NBS

“Ugh, look at this hardwood floor! It’s so ugly and dated. What were they thinking?”

“I know, I know. Don’t worry, they’re coming tomorrow to put down fresh and contemporary shag carpet tomorrow.”

2000 – Home Renovation, 2:00pm Saturdays on the Repair Network

“Blech, look at this shag carpet! If there’s an uglier and more dated floor covering, I’ve yet to see it.”

“We’re tearing it up tomorrow. There’s nice hardwood underneath, and the guys are coming to stain it tomorrow.”

2030 – HomeRen, 5:00am Fridays on Repair.com Livefeed by Holo

“Man, look at this hardwood! Yuck. 2000 called, they want their outdated crap back.”

“Yeah, it’s painful. But there’s a guy coming tomorrow to carpet it over.”

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“I’m sorry, I was expecting a-”

“Let me guess,” said the crow, its voice raspy and harsh. “You were expecting an eagle.”

“Well…”

“A hawk, then. Or an owl. Maybe a pretty flitting little songbird.”

Corrie bristled. “I said I was sorry. Among my kind that’s usually enough.”

“And among my kind, one doesn’t interrupt until the other has finished speaking!” snapped the crow. “Humans! All so alike, thinking that your perceptions are right and correct. Ooh, hawks and eagles are so honorable. Ooh, owls are so wise. Ooh, songbirds are so pretty. You know what? They’re not. That’s ignorance, the same things we crows are always accused of when we eat the crops you are trying to hoard for yourself.”

Tactfully, Corrie thought about her reply for a moment. “So what is the truth, then?”

“The truth is that hawks are sharp-eyed bullies that pick on things that are tiny or dying and are so proud they don’t deign to speak to anyone but their own kind. Owls are dullards who compare the size and consistency of their vomited pellets as casual conversation. And songbirds? If they spoke your language or you theirs you’d see that their songs are all ribald ballads about females with big eggs. None of them so intelligent as crows to be able to learn human tongues, all of them living by brute force and luck instead of their wits.”

“I had no idea.”

“Of course not,” said the crow. “The others are too dull to take advantage of humans’ warped ideas of them, and only we crows are intelligent enough to know we’re being insulted.”

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I saw a man flirting with a girl behind a desk
Leaned over to suggest the casual amid a careful pose

I wanted to hate him for it, lips curled silently
For I envied him that pose, that desk, that woman

(For she seemed lovely and intelligent, in as much
As observation suffices for such qualities)

But I could not

For I have too often been leaned over that desk
A thousand, ten thousand of its sister desks

Striking the same too-obvious pose
Fumbling for the same words

Listening without listening
Smiling without smiling

A mirror’s brutal truth

The same hollow act, the same hallowed act
I saw myself in him, and my ideal in her

I left them be without a word, a sound, a gesture
Not with hate, but with hope

I hope he has better fortune than I
I hope this desk will be his last leaning

Lean no more, my brother; lean no more

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