Tag Archives: sound

Apple Bamboo

iphone-jerkWe recently hosted a quasi-invited guest. (She sort of invited herself. It was a Thanksgiving kind of thing.) We took this person downtown for shopping, out to dinner and put her up for the night. But this guest wasn’t alone. She was possessed of an uninvited interloper. It was an iPhone.

Introducing the “bamboo” sound.


The sound was a lot like that coffee commercial jingle only a lot more woody, with a strong, robust finish. It was like Juan Valdez had chugged too much tequila and was getting jiggy on the marimbas.


That sound haunts me. It chases me in my dreams, where it is the size of the Death Star and I’m running but making no progress. “The rebel base will be in range in 15 minutes.” Only, in this dream, there was no Luke Skywalker to eject a torpedo pulse into a tiny little hole and save the day. The floating space-suited black helmet dudes fired that sucker and blew me and my planet up. And guess what? The sound the Death Star beam made? It was the iPhone bamboo.
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Into the Bowels of the Bowl

This is what they mean by “taste the rainbow.”

I was flushed with excitement when I made the team. I almost flipped my lid. Not one to fly off the handle, I was resolute and went about the business of doing my job. This consisted mainly of navigating a dinghy about a very small body of water. I’d sing as I tackled the task. “I sail the ocean blue and my saucy shit’s a beauty. I’m a sober man and true, and attentive to my doody. Ahoy! Ahoy!”

For I had set my sights high. I was the man lucky enough to know his own destiny. One day, if I worked hard enough, my teammates and I, as members of the Pack Ten conference, would play in The Toilet Bowl. Perhaps not the bowl sponsored by Tostitos but at least the one that had Ex-Lax, Preparation H and Beano.

And we made it, too, quite literally by the seat of our pants.

[/end of dream sequence]

Blob “Constas” Pation here, and today we take a look at the storied career of Tom B. Taker, a man so dedicated to his crap craft that he has worked the last 11 years within spitting distance of toilets. It’s a story ripped from the anals of history. We caught up with the man as he set out to maintain this blistering pace and go for the world record of twelve years in a row.
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I built a keep to hold my anger in
I built a fortress for my keep
I built a castle around my fortress
And I dug a moat that’s two fathoms deep

I built a city for my castle
I filled it up with my subjects
They are all paralyzed by fear of the city
And all the anger that it protects
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666 equilateral triangle

█════███████████───── triangle cutOne thing is certain: The longer I remain at work the greater the probability I will make certain scientific discoveries. Once again I’m here to announce new findings.

Today’s discovery is something known as the 666 Equilateral Triangle.

A triangle is a polygon comprised of three straight lines.

An equilateral triangle is a triangle where all three lines are exactly the same length.

A 666 equilateral triangle is an equilateral triangle where the length of all lines is exactly 6 feet.

Three lines that are six feet each aka 666.


Triangles 2You might be wondering? How does this pertain to my job? How indeed.

The office where I work is roughly the size of the living room in my house. Three of us humans work in that space. In a corner of that space to maximize crowding. The grouping is such that we are not arranged at minimum safe distance.

The other day, as I lamented for the umpteenth time the proximity of our positions, I realized our seats formed a perfect triangle. And I had a hunch.

I waited until I was alone, a rare phenomenon at work. I waited a long time. Finally I got my chance. I sprang from my seat and grabbed the tape measure. Yep! My hypothesis was confirmed. The distance between our chairs was six feet!

Six feet from the boss to me. Six feet from me to the co-worker. Six feet from the co-worker to the boss. Six, six, six.

I knew there was something evil about my job!

“Here is wisdom. Let him who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man: His number is 666.”
– Rev. 13:18 (New King James Version)

You might be saying to yourself, “Okay. That don’t sound so evil to me. What’s the big dealio, you friggin’ whiner.”

Well played. Point well taken.

In rebuttal, let me add this: Absolutely zero privacy isn’t really that big of deal. It’s a caffeteria-style environment all the way, and our triangle is positioned in such a way that two of seats have an optimal view of the third. (And you’ll never guess who that might be.) Yep, with an incremental nod of the head, either of them can surreptitiously watch me all friggin’ day if that is their penchant. They both sit behind me so I can’t see jack shit.

We’re not exactly the Three Musketeers. It’s more like “Two for One and One can eat shit.” Or something like that.

But that’s not the worst of it. No.

First of all, at this image suggests, there are forces at work that are external to the triangle. Assume that C is my workstation and D is the toilet. Coincidentally enough, that is also six feet away!!

And the work toilet is, of course, where the boss makes a lot of explosive noises. Words fail me to describe the phenomenon. Suffice it to say that he goes in, the door shuts, and three seconds later I wish I was dead.

But, thanks to the 666 equilateral triangle, that’s not all. The boss gives omnipresent a whole new meaning.

One thing is his labored breathing. All day long he sits behind me, six feet away, and gulps down air and wind-tunnels it back out again. It is as constant as the northern star. If you don’t find some way to divert your attention you will surely go mad.

Triangle Dairy TruckThere is also the sounds he makes when he eats. Slurpin’ and smackin’ and juicy snap, crackle and pops. Ugh. Mixed with labored breathing, of course.

That’s bad enough, but he makes those juicy smacking noises … all … day … long, whether he is eating or not. It’s amazing but true. I don’t know how he does it. He’s got some stamina.

So there I am with no privacy and struggling not to go mad from the audio onslaught.

And that’s what it’s like to work inside the 666 equilateral triangle. And by work I mean live since there is no other place in my life where I spend more time.

What geometrical shapes stalk you at work? What inscribed forms of evil do you deal with at your job?

Television advertisers ask: CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW!!!

Family televisionThis post addresses something that has bothered me for years. In fact, I blogged about it way back in the late 1990’s. OK, I admit, I didn’t call it a “blog” back then. But I did have a section of what I called my “home page” (aka web site) where I ranted about various things. The topic of this posting was one of them.

Ever notice how television commercials are louder than regular programming? I noticed it and complained about it over 10 years ago and it still bothers me to this day. And lately I’ve been noticing it get worse. A lot worse.

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