Friday morning my wife and I were in Portland, Oregon, on our way to the zoo. (More on that later.) We had ridden MAX, the light rail system, into downtown and had to transfer lines in Pioneer Square (AKA Portland’s Living Room).
While there, we saw the new Apple store. It was early in the morning and it wasn’t opened yet.
The architecture was Lego Meets Glass. It was a rectangular building with a long back wall covered with assorted goodies and three other walls consisting of giant panels of glass. The simple design spoke of transparency, projecting an airy, light, sense of come-see-what-we’ve-got. Sleek, clear, simple and white. And, although I didn’t know it at the time, there’s also a lawn on the roof.
I said to my wife, “I’ll bet there’s at least 57 iPads in there.” (Homage to Steve Martin.)
Inside one solitary worker sat at a desk feverishly clicking, thinking and doing about Apple stuff.
In front, slowly traversing the entire length of the store at a leisurely pace, were two security guards. They looked bored out of their minds. I forgot to look to see if they were armed, but we are talking about an Apple store, right? The place was obviously where riches were stored.
There’s not going to be an Oceans 7.1.1 heist here today. Not on my iWatch!
Suddenly a man approached the front of the building. The security guards sniffed him but apparently he checked out. He arrived at the front door and waved at the man inside. He was special. He measured up. He got to go inside.
I’d heard that Apple stores have something called a Genius Bar but I didn’t see a single bottle of booze. Hell if I was going there for a drink.
Unfortunately we couldn’t wait around all day. We had a train to catch. Before we turned away I saw a security guard hock up a loogie the size of an iPod Nano and launch it on the shiny white steps. The guards leisurely turned and began shuffling towards each other again. A vision of the North Korea border suddenly leapt unbidden to my mind.
I felt tingles. This portended good. Suddenly I knew the trip to the zoo was going to be something special. Things were happening. We walked a block and waited for our ride while looking at a Nike swoosh symbol the size of the Titanic.
I’m the former. “Never leave a beverage behind,” I’m pretty damn famous for saying.
Some, however, fall for that old wives’ tale that beverage enjoyment abates the deeper you get. Hogwash!
That first icy cold blast of Pepsi or Coke or beer is sublime goodness, right? On the other hand, that pathetic last half inch leftover at the bottom isn’t worth the backwashed-spit that now comprises 42% of its volume.
I guess the big question is this: Are all of those partially-filled glasses left lying around the house “half empty” or “half full?” The correct answer, of course, is: “Who gives a shit? Clean that crap up!”
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My wife and I have perfected the art of screaming at the TV while Google runs a new series of ads promoting something called Google Play. The ads seem tailor made for millennials, those wacky creatures with birthdays in early 1980s to the early 2000s.
Google loves millennials. Also grandmothers using AOL on Windows 95 who only know how to open emailed photos of grandchildren and stalk the entire family on Facebook. But it’s mostly the millennials.
Millennials are the people in your neighborhood who get run over by cars while texting, fall down open manholes when walking down a sidewalk while texting, running over other people while driving and texting, listening to lectures in college and texting, working mundane jobs and texting, and, if the rumors are true, even use their internet-powered smartphones while sitting on the toilet.
Whatever Google poops out millennials soak up like a sponge. How about Google in your wristwatch like George Jetson? Yes, please! How about Google in a computer you strap to your face? I’ll look so cool! How about Google you wear in a ring on your finger? Yes, I do.
These are people living enhanced reality sorts of lives. Why just look at a boring street when you can wear goggles that superimpose text (in the font of your choice) and describe what’s in view so you won’t have to hurt your brain? And it’s free, not counting the 20% of display real estate devoted to blinking advertisements.
Speaking of which, the ad campaign for Google Play is promoting the ability to watch Hollywood blockbuster movies like “Yankee! Look at me! I am the Captain now!”
Of course, with Google involved, it doesn’t quite stop there. In Google’s opinion, while watching the movie, you should be multitasking. Perhaps using some Google Docs to manage your money. Manage tomorrow’s expenditures and consumption. Let’s devote about 20% of the display to that.
Google is known for search (an admittedly archaic service they continue to offer for nostalgic reasons) so of course they recommend that while enjoying movies. In the commercial the clever viewer realizes, “Holy shit! That’s Tom Hanks. Click pause. Let’s google that sum bitch. I bet this isn’t his first movie. What else has this guy been in?”
With proper utilization of the myriad of services offered by Google, it’s possible to give less and less screen to the movie itself. If done properly, the movie can be shrunk to the size of a single twinkling pixel, much like a real star in Google NightSky.
Of course, at that size, the only part of the movie that can actually be enjoyed is the audio, and that is easily overwritten by Google Radio.
A good movie prompts a feeling of suspension of disbelief. It takes you out of the moment. Google doesn’t like people who are present in the moment. That’s why they launched Google Omnipresent Stimuli. Movies should never get your full attention. They should just be a tiny slice of the stimuli spectrum. With advertising, of course.
“Yankee! Look at Google! They are the Captain now.”
It turns out that the human stomach isn’t that discriminating. It’s a go-with-the-flow kind of hipster dufus (probably wearing a fedora) who blindly trusts decisions made by the brain and mouth. Ha ha ha! Like they give a shit about downstream organs!
Tom’s Law #42
As one becomes less involved in the production and preparing of one’s own food, the odds of unwanted contaminants, unknown ingredients, lessened nutrition, deception and malice are exponentially increased.
Chew on that!
For example, the average fast food patron eats an average of 12 public hairs per year. And probably in a public place! Some things are meant to be handled in pubic.
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As a nexus of negativity, this blog has, above all else, an unbreakable commitment to truth and fact. Hell, that’s all you need to be a true negativist!
In that spirit (heh) I now say this:
At least one gimlet was harmed during the creation of this post.
Yes, courtesy of my wife’s desire to imbibe during the early-to-mid early afternoon and pouring the wrong spirits, I got to consume the “mistake.” Ha ha ha!
Let it be known she was making palomas but grabbed the vodka instead of the tequila. Oops! That’s when my solitary superpower kicked in and I saved the day!
Thinking on my feet I handed her the tequila and salvaged the vodka, adding only a dash of Rose’s Lime Juice.
Viola! A gimlet was born! (Then immediately consumed.) And a little something extra I call Afternoon Delight. (That’s code for an ulcer flare-up.)
Make the jump for a few more grimly gimlet details…
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I can be naked in front of my cat without being self-conscious. I am secure in how my cat feels about me and I know that there isn’t any judgement or opinion there. Just pure love. And the feeling is mutual.
Then I worry. What if heaven exists? And what if I get there and find that my cat is waiting for me. And what if she can talk and we have fantastic conversations? And what if one day she says, “Hey, dude. You know all those times you undressed in front of me and I meowed? That was cat language for ‘ugly naked.’ We were trying to get you to stop torturing us. True story.”
I don’t think I would like that. Yeah, like I need more things to worry about.
The point is: Can you ever know what someone else is really thinking? And even when they tell you outright they’re still probably lying. It’s what we humans do.
So why should it matter what they think?