Fiction and moral decay. Or fictional moral decay...

April 14th, 2010

I was reading an article about the American Library Association's list of "challenged books" for 2009. And, shock of shocks, the Twilight books showed up. But only as number 5. I guess vampires and werewolves are not enough on their own to take the top spot.

No, that goes to the "IM" series, of which I am completely unaware. But just feel the moral indignation wash over you: "...criticized for nudity, language, and drug references."

Sure, of course people would object to foul language (I'm assuming; or maybe they just didn't like the grammar?). And drug references? Another obvious choice.

But...nudity? In a novel? As in saying that a character is naked? Honestly?

Like this?

Character One's clothes dropped to the floor. "Look at me, Character Two. I am naked. I stand here, without clothing."

Character Two looked at Character One, who was naked. "Yes, I can see that you are naked. And not wearing clothes. My, you are very naked."

I know: That's pretty hot, right? That's causing all sorts of immoral thoughts to careen around your head. The thing is, another book was cited as a challenged book because it contained "nudity, language, sexual content." So "nudity" and "sexual content" are separate items.

The nudity part is just the author saying that a character is naked. I guess. At least, that's all I can figure.

And that is so completely insane. The whole notion of banning books is ridiculous enough, but banning them because a child might see the word "naked"?

The insanity of that just makes my brain ache.

(Oh, and please stop banning Catcher in the Rye. It just makes people want to read it, and that's just cruel.)


March 24th, 2010

From this article:

Heat waves in the Central Valley often push homeowners there into the fifth tier of [electricity] usage as they crank their air conditioners to stay cool....

Bakersfield residents have been complaining that the huge disparity in rates unfairly penalizes them while benefiting residents of cooler climes, such as the Bay Area.

Yes, it's completely unfair that we in the Bay Area are burdened with a more pleasant climate (and, let's be honest, more pleasant everything) than Bakersfield. So it's only fair that we should pay PG&E more to compensate for this (and lower Bakersfield's rates, but I think we should realize that the important part here is about giving PG&E more cash).

Of course, I also pay slightly more for my mortgage than it would cost for a similarly-sized house in Bakersfield. So I propose that everyone in Bakersfield contribute to my mortgage payments, to make up for that discrepancy.

I think it's only fair.

Cheap loans! Totally legit! Certainly not spam in any way!

March 4th, 2010

Fortunately, most spam is blocked before it reaches me (and even then it gets dumped into a Junk folder). But every so often a winner manages to get through.

Now, this might sound sketchy:

Dear Email Owner,

Do you need a fast loan?

But, hey, I am an Email Owner! So he's got that right. And they give loans at the low, low rate of (as low as ) 3%!

we give out loans at very cheap and moderate rates

Sounds good.

We are trusted,reliable and dynamic.

Even better! All of those things are good, and what I look for in unsolicited email loan offers.

We offer Loan Amount of : 5k-$5m

SWEET! Now I can finally get that yacht! Next year, Larry Ellison is going to be my bitch at the America's Cup race!

On the other hand, how can they possibly give me a loan for 5 million dollars? They don't know me from Adam (well, except that I'm an Email Owner). What if they go bankrupt, handing out millions of dollars to just anyone?

I want to fully assure you that you will get the funds if only you are very serious and trustworthy.

Phew! I should have known that they'd have that covered.

But...I dunno. It still seems suspicious. But what's this? It's another message, from someone completely different! And certainly not at all related, in any way, to the person offering me a loan by email!

Hi, my name is Kathleen Deborah, i was in a big problem and was in need of a financial aid due to the current global financial melt down finding such was very difficult. i was so desperate even to the extent that i got scammed to the tune of eight thousand dollars.($150,000 dollars). But God finally came to my rescue when i came across William Cook Loan Investment who eventually secured for me the loan that i have so desperately wanted.

Kathleen's obviously a pious woman, but just doesn't have a head for numbers. Or grammar. Or capitalization. Still, how can I refuse, now that I received completely independent confirmation of William Cook Loan Investment's (God-sanctioned) loan operation?

(I'll let you ride on the yacht for free, but it's BYOB. Just so you know.)

You know "cheap, fast, or good"?

January 18th, 2010

How about one out of three? This is from an installation guide that I inherited:

An upgrade installation is initiated by specifying an installation directory that is at the same directory level as the installation directory that was specified for the previous installation.

Got that?

Just an example of why going with the cheapest of the cheap (offshore) tech writers probably isn't the best idea. Unless you're trying to drive more users to tech support.

SWEET BABY [insert a religious or scientific person of your choice]!!!

January 7th, 2010


The bridge! The captain's beard! The arrow-logo uniforms! The wave motion gun breech slamming closed! The theme song!

My inner 6-year-old is deliriously happy right now.

It's a movie that I'd actually go to a theater to see...and I know full well that it will never appear in a theater in the United States.