July 07, 2004
July 2004 marks the transition of our servers from one major national brand to another, lesser-known but more-compelling service provider.
Unfortunately, due to some undesirable behavior on the part of my content management system, I had to export and then re-import all of the data for this site. As a result, the archive pages have ended up being renumbered. They are still in sequential, chronological order... but deleted pages are now completely gone, and it is their absence that has caused the renumbering.
This site has been indexed by a number of search engines over the years, and I notice that we get many, many hits every day from people who find essays here by using those search engines. Because of the archive renumbering, many folks visiting this site looking for an essay on gingiva grafts or a movie review of The Lord of the Rings could instead find my treatise on fuzzy set theory or photos of our beautiful child.
If this has happened to you, please fear not. The essay you are seeking is nearby, just a few pages back.
At the top of each individual archive page, there are links to the previous entry, the home page (the link says "main"), and the following entry. Simply click on the previous entry a few times, and you should arrive at the entry that you came here to find.
I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. In the meantime, though, I hope you'll have fun looking around this site!
I've been going through some very old piles of paper in my office. I found this on a note I'd written a few years ago:
A Really Brief History of Time
7000 BC -- Time is invented, but it runs backwards.
1 BC -- Running out of time, developers reengineer it to go the other way.
July 20, 2004
This website of mine first went live on February 27, 1998. For almost two years, I hand coded the site, before finally adopting a content management system (written by my friend Jehan) in November of 2000. For various reasons, I've been going through what remains of my archives of this site from its pre-CMS days.
The very first entry included, among other things, this poem:
Beauty is in the Eye of the Beeholder
To find true beauty,
Locate a bee keeper with
a bee in his hand.
It's nice to know that some things don't change, eh? Mmmm. Poetry and puns....
July 26, 2004
True story. My office occupies a building which I share with a few other folks, one of whom has donated an old microwave oven for our common benefit. The microwave oven is *quite* old, however, and it takes six minutes to properly heat up a can of soup that would otherwise take only three minutes.
I brought in a frozen dinner for my lunch today; one of those biiig frozen dinners that takes something like ten minutes to nuke in a *good* microwave oven*. I wonder... am I going to have to microwave this meal for twenty minutes before I can eat it? At what point do you say that a microwave oven is really not speeding up the cooking process at all?
It's very hot outside today. Maybe I'll just cook my HungryPerson dinner on the sidewalk....
Below is a slightly modified version of an essay first posted to my site August 6, 1999:
I am blessed to have friends and family who manage to travel along all walks of life. One of my dearest friends is a noted journalist/activist who has written some of the best work you'll ever read about the destruction of the environment in Upstate New York; he's had stories of his own appear in many of the major papers, and has even been the subject of a few of them, himself. (The New York Times, in particular, comes to mind.) In fact, he was the E-n-C of Generation when I first started there. That's where I had my first real taste of the finer points of journalism-on-a-deadline.
Like many of my friends, Eric is about as multi-talented as you can get. One of his many current careers though is that of professional astrologer.
I happened to have a chance to get together with him a couple of weeks ago in Manhattan. Although he and I have been working on a few things together here and there for the past couple of years, it had been seven years or so since the last time we'd actually seen each other in person. Ah, the wonders of the Internet!
Spending some quality time with Eric (insofar as eating at the Stage Diner can be considered "quality time") led me to think about some cold, hard realities... and some not-necessarily-realities. Such as, for instance, astrology.
What if Astrology was the real deal, and my skepticism was ill-founded? What if, someday, the results of the double-blind studies came in, and Astrology won out as being a valid indicator of personality, behavior, and destiny?
I'd like to present for you the year 2020, if Astrology were proven to be a valid science:
- Colleges would, naturally, use the birth dates of applicants to determine not only whether they should be accepted for admittance, but what majors they'd be allowed to choose.
- Presidents of the United States of America would be required to be 35 years of age, and a Leo. Secretaries of State, likewise, would be Aries. Voters would tend to choose Pisces for legislative positions, just to get them out of the food service industries.
- Police would only require a breathalizer test of non-Geminis. Geminis, themselves, would be presumed guilty automatically.
- "The stars told me to do it," would become a legally justifiable excuse for misdemeanors. For felonies, the plea "Not Guilty by Reason of Astrology" could be entered, but each side in the case would inevitably bring in fifteen Astrologers each to argue the true meaning of having been born at 10:15am GMT on some particular date.
- Pop Astrology would take up the debate about whether consumer products (like cars or software) were "born" the day they were released to manufacturing, or the day they first went on sale.
- "You must be this tall and a Libra to ride this roller coaster."
- The legal drinking age would be 21, except for Aquarians, for whom the drinking age would be 19.
- Budweiser would stop using "Born On Dating" on their cans and bottles after they discovered that many batches couldn't be sold because they were "born under a bad sign".
- OJ Simpson would *still* be looking for the real killers.
When you get right down to it, is the world I just described any less scary than the one in which we currently live?
Copyright (c)1998 - 2010 by Allan Rousselle. All rights reserved, all wrongs reversed, all reservations righted, all right, already.
Click here to send me mail.