Do you have happy memories of Halloween nights when you were a kid? Counting and sorting your loot? Secretly getting away with eating too much until you got sick?
If yes, then congratulations. You lived through the experience.
I know of at least four young people from Halloween 2014 that will never get the same chance.
Vicodin! Oh, my poor wee bairns.
Credit: A Guru’s Lament
First things first. I hate drugs*.
*Per the Drug Subsistence Manual (DSM) III: A definition of “drug” that excepts caffeine and alcohol.
As I was saying, I hate drugs. I almost never take them. Present company of alcohol and caffeine excepted, of course. I have to be in some dire straits to even consider it and, even then, I generally take less than the recommended dosage.
I don’t like ibuprofen and I don’t like Tylenol. I even eschew aspirin. My wife knows a lot about prescription medications she’ll often respond to my whining by saying something like, “Take four of these horse-sized pills.” I’ll usually only take one or two.
Topping my list of things I hate is nicotine and marijuana. Gross and pointless. I understand life is hard. My advice? Eat it. (Life, I mean.) If you’re not going to live in the reality of the here and now, why bother? What’s the point?
I do admit, though, that Walter White’s “blue ice” looks tempting. I wouldn’t mind taking some of that fictionalized meth for a spin. Just one time.
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“Oh man, I can’t fucking believe this. Another basement, another elevator. How can the same shit happen to the same guy twice?”
–John McClane, The Book of Die Hard, Chapter Two
In other words, I took a day off from work.
I like to keep notes of blog ideas. Voluminous notes. A veritable plethora of tiny chicken scratch scribbles that are only discernable by me, and sometimes not even then.
Then I go out in the world and live my life. This is also known as to fodder. Then the same shit happens to the same guy twice. Suddenly all blog ideas are out the window.
So, in the vast majority of cases, this blog is merely a depiction of “What happened yesterday?” That’s about as intellectual as it gets around here.
In that vein, guess what happened yesterday? Smooth segue, eh?
I don’t know if I’ll try to answer that question. But I do know this: Watch both Zeitgeist movies, a few choice TED videos, and finish it off with the Story of Stuff and you might just say, “Brother, it sure as hell ain’t this!” And then depression sets in…
In my study of gerbils I have pondered mysteries both great and deep.
For Abyss newbies:
“Gerbil” is the term I have coined for younglings that fail to empty nest on schedule. And then, later, when they belatedly emerge from the nest sans high school diploma and any discernable life plan, they do things like go on food stamps, obtain medical marijuana cards (sore back), drink lots of alcohol, sleep until 5pm, stay up until 5am, take pictures of themselves smoking and post them on Facebook, and avoid jobs, school and self-improvement at all costs.
That’s the modern genus of gerbil that I am familiar with.
A Rush song famously said, “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.” Indeed. The modern gerbil lifestyle is a choice!
I took a gerbil aside one day and offered words that I thought, in my hubris, might somehow be wise.
Trust me on this. It ain’t easy coming back from a gerbil bite.
I noticed a trend. My posts filled with vile hate and bitterness haven’t been getting much love. I thought to thine own self I was supposed to remain true? I think what Shakespeare must have meant was to try that, at least until the comments start to go down. So this morning I woke up resolute and ready to do something different. I was going to write something happy, uplifting and full of joy. The following piece of Flash Friction is the result. Enjoy! –Ed
It was a day that started much like any other. My friends and I were chilling, as always, in The Bag.
Things with the wife were in a state of flux. I wasn’t quite as stay puft as I used to be. Of late the relationship was getting a bit stale.
Like often happens in times of melancholy, I found myself in my special place. I admit I was feeling a bit roasted. It was the far corner of The Bag and the place where the Holy Ingredients were listed. I’d been here so many times I’d long since memorized them all, and my eyes had long ago adjusted to the backwards printing.
… sugar … corn syrup … water … gelatin … dextrose … vanilla flavorings …
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What the hell? There’s money to be made in Viagra? I mean, why else would so many internet miscreants spend so much damn time and effort trying to spew forth bullshit emails that most humans (with a brain) are just going to ignore, anyway?
I mean, what’s the point? Is there anyone still out there stupid enough to click on this email bullshit and exclaim, “Oh, look. Viagra. Cialis. That’s just what I was waiting for. Here, wait. I’m getting my wallet now. Let me give you my credit card information. Yeah, you look trustworthy.”
If you like both of those drugs perhaps something known as the “Cialis + Viagra Powerpack” is what you need. Mmm, that sounds good! It says it is available at a “special price” right now, too. How serendipitous for me!
Uh oh. I think I’m a little too excited by your offer. Do you have anything for frothing at the mouth? And I’m setting the four-hour timer just in case I have to see my doctor for overly-energetic Anthony Weiner syndrome.
Seriously. Is it possible they still make money by getting people to fall for this shit? I guess it’s possible. There just might be people with IQs lower than 20 out there surfin’ the net.
Because I’m an internet daredevil son of a bitch, I clicked on that powerpack link to see the special price. “Cialis + Viagra Powerpack 20mg/100mg pills” 30 count each is rated a “best buy” and a “special offer” for $162.50. Is that a good deal? How the hell would I know?
The year was 2011. Humankind stood upon a great precipice. Many achievements had been notched on its belt (that’s a puny pun) but still, the number one threat to this civilization was limp penises for men who were too damn old for sexual activity. Therefore all commerce, production and retail powers were brought to bear on the manufacture and distribution of drugs that would save humanity itself. If not save humanity at least give old dudes a few more joyrides. Viagra and Cialis were the gateway to humankind’s future, potential and greatness.
Just don’t take that shit without Lipitor because it will literally pop your heart right out of your friggin’ chest.
All of this is just my way of saying that there has been some email hacking going on lately. And when emails get hacked the erectile dysfunction emails will abound. Hint: It’s not “dysfunction” when the thing stops working. It’s all part of God’s plan. Taking ED drugs is like telling God to go to Hell.
I recently got hacked and my account was used to send spam. Today it happened to a friend of mine.
After I was hacked, I changed my passwords and did some research. I have two theories so far. One is that using public wi-fi may have exposed my usernames and passwords to anyone with Firefox and the proper hacking plug-in. Does that little beep on my iPod Touch letting me know I was just mentioned in a tweet mean that my account is now compromised? I’m not sure.
I developed my other theory after I noticed something quite startling. As far as I can tell, websites like WordPress, Twitter and Facebook allow you to login without encryption! (If I’m wrong about this, I apologize.)
I went to all three sites. The home page on all three sites included username/email and password boxes with login buttons. None of these home pages were encrypted. I checked for this by looking for https in the address bar. None of them had that. They were all simply http.
As far as I can tell, for two to three years now I have been using these sites to send my unencrypted username and passed across the internet. That’s exactly what you are never supposed to do.
Thanks for the help!
What I learned is that you have to bypass these home page login functions. Do not use them! Leave them blank and click the LOGIN button. You will then be sent to an encrypted page where it should be safer to enter your password.
If you’ve used an unencrypted login function, I recommend you change your password. Then you have to be vigilant. It’s easy to forget. You have to make it your new habit.
What I don’t know is the security impact of clicking the “remember me” box. My guess is that a cookie is used for subsequent visits so that should be safe.
What I also don’t know is what happens when you save passwords in your handheld iOS devices. Are those always encrypted before being sent? I don’t know for sure. I haven’t been able to find much information about that.
Be careful out there. From now on I’m taking all Viagra emails as a hint and may just show up on your doorstep in response. “Say hello to my little friend!”
That chittering sound can only mean one thing…
And now, the top stories from the gerbil desk. (For those new to this blog, please check in at the G.R.I.P.E. Headquarters to pick up your visitor badge.)
First, the case of the missing car keys. The spare key to my wife’s car has been missing for eons. The gerbil, of course, took the blame. The other day I hopped in my car and a knob had fallen off the radio. When I got home I checked under the seat and found that pesky knob. I also found the missing car keys!
This is an odd sensation. The gerbil was falsely accused.
“That’s one for you, Gerbil!” I shouted to no one in particular. Back to you, Tom.
Thanks, Tom. In light of all the negativity in the world today, we try to bring our viewers feel good news when we can. It’s nice to start off the broadcast on the right foot.
Now, on to darker news…
We know where the gerbil lives, but he fiercely prevents us from visiting. We are allowed as near as the end of the driveway – no farther! We originally suspected a commune with a slightly eccentric couple who owns the property. But now we suspect the urge for privacy is drug related. One piece of recent evidence that points in that direction – The gerbil recently updated his Facebook page and prominently featured pictures of a “bud” of marijuana. Rather than completing school and/or getting a job, the gerbil has apparently chosen the path of worshiping a plant, which, at least for now, is still illegal in this country. Good luck with that, gerbil!
Last, but not least, we bring you news from the world of camping. My wife and I recently roughed it in the woods relying only our wits for survival. Well, our wits and our camping gear. My wife was quite alarmed when she dug into the gear and found that some items were missing. All of the steak knives were gone and there was only one fork. The prevailing theory? The gerbil needed some utensils when he moved out, so he did what comes naturally – steal from those who were there for him the most. Classy.
So, while out camping recently, my wife and I had the opportunity to experience extra intimacy and closeness by sharing a single fork for four days. Thanks, gerbil! Fork you very much.