Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Roger, Wilco

You know what shits me today? (well, actually, that question should be more 'you know what i just thought of that shits me?) Space Quest. And Space Quest 2. And 3. And if there was a 4th one, it shits me as well. Even though I can't remember playing it. Games like Kings Quest, Police Quest and Leisure Suit Larry. Adventure games. The ol' typey typey type type games.

You know why they shit me? Cause they're not around anymore.

Where are kids gonna learn how to type properly these days? My typing skills were cut on games that gave remarks like "I don't know what a rkock is" when you tried to look under a rock for the golden horse pube or something. The art of moving your character around with the arrow keys and typing something with the other meant co-ordination of the highest order. Games that went soooo close to calling you a moron, but euphemised it with "I don't know what you mean", and had smart-arsed comments to make when you typed in a swear word.

Now everything's clicky clicky clickaroo. Even good ol' MS Word is against me. Gone are the days when you had to run a spell-check on your document to find the offending item, the fucking thing looks while you're typing. AND (i've capitalised that, just to show that i haven't quite finished yet) it changes the spelling if it's a common mistake. Words like 'receipt' or 'communication' and 'NKOTB' change before you even know you've fucked up. So poor little Johnny could very well spend the rest of his quasi-illiterate life thinking that 'communication' has one m, receipt doesn't do the whole "i after e except after c" bonanza, and NKOTB were different from New Kids On The Block. Bring back typewriters and Word for Windows 3.11.

A luddite I am not, I just want kids to be able to spell.

Oprah Winfrey shits me too. What happened to all the people who used to "solve" family "issues" on her show, and break down and cry? Where's the love, Oprah? These days, George Clooney pops in for a visit. Last time I checked, the only issue with George Clooney is that he's extremely rich and good looking. (not that i rate him, of course).
Bring back the enormously fat Americans who cry. There used to be some dignity about appearing on Oprah, rather than Springer.

Running through the rain will not only get you there quicker, but dryer...

First the theory. We divide the raindrops hitting you into two categories: (1) head drops, which fall from above and would hit you even if you were standing still; and (2) chest drops, which you run/walk into and which wouldn't hit you if you were standing still.
We can all agree that the number of head drops is strictly a function of how long you're out in the rain; if you run, fewer head drops. The question is whether the allegedly larger number of chest drops you get when running outweighs the definitely larger number of head drops you get while walking.Not to keep you in suspense, the answer is no. If we ignore aerodynamic effects, we can show mathematically (but won't) that while you'll collect many fewer head drops running rather than walking, you'll get exactly the same number of chest drops, regardless of the speed at which you travel. Bottom line: you'll be a lot wetter if you walk. But wait, you say. What about those pesky aerodynamic effects? The requisite math is a bit daunting, but never fear. Heedless of personal chastising from neighbours and illiterate children, I spent a recent rainy Saturday running down the street like an idiot brandishing pieces of red construction paper clipped to cardboard, the better to snag and count raindrops. Methodology: three trials of two runs each over a fixed distance, once running, once walking. Winds: calm. Angle of attack of paper relative to ground: 45 degrees. Results:Trial #1. Running, 15 seconds to run course; 213 drops. Walking, 40 seconds; couldn't count drops, paper soaked. Shortened course.Trial #2. Running, 7 seconds; 131 drops. Walking, 20 seconds; 216 drops. Trial #3. Running, 7 seconds; 147 drops. Walking, 17 seconds; 221 drops.So there you are. The differences are larger than the numbers suggest because many drops on the "walking" papers dried before I could count them. (counting is hard) My guess is that the number of drops is exactly proportional. If you're out twice as long, you get twice as wet. One obvious caveat. If enough rain falls on you, whether because of the intensity of the rainfall or the distance you have to travel, eventually you'll be thoroughly soaked. After that it doesn't matter whether you run or walk; you're as wet as you're going to get. So the preceding applies only to relatively short sprints through less-than-torrential downpours. My advice: always run--if nothing else you could use the exercise. And if you're running to or from work, you can get compo.

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