Okay, I’m out of here. No, I’m not. But I would if I could. Be out. Of here. Because it snowed all weekend. Not a lot; Friday we had a dusting that stuck to the yard furniture, and there were still a few evil white patches Saturday morning. On Saturday afternoon I was standing outside the studios of AM1280 waiting to go in and commit two hours of random radio, and I saw the snow moving in a great white column on the ground like the Smoke Monster from “Lost” – it looked like it was hunting for something to kill. Besides hope of a clement spring, of course.
Well, it was warm in the studio.
On the way home from the show – which was lots of fun, incidentally; did it with Ed Morrissey of Captain’s Quarters, or rather Hot Air – the wind was so nasty it shoved the Element around the highway as if it wanted me to pull over and admit some hidden sin. I declined. Drove to Best Buy to get some software instead, and managed to talk myself out of everything I had intended to buy. One of the games was a railroad simulator, and I needed to know if it let me build railroads without having to play some long complex scenario. I don’t have time for that anymore. I never had the desire to play strategy games, anyway; I just want to build small things and watch them go. It’s not like the people who built railroads in their basements felt cheated because they weren’t competing, by mail, with six other guys to see who could boost stock price or corner the market on flax transportation. They just wanted to stick little fake trees into paper mache mountains and watch the trains go around and around.
Same here. I went online at the store to see if the game had a sandbox mode, but the reviews were vague. They also noted that the game chugged a bit, even if you had sufficient computational hardware to defeat Spassky at chess and 100TB of memory. Again, the guys who built model trains in the basement would have been frustrated if their hands stopped moving for ten seconds every time they laid a difficult piece of track, then jerked ahead three feet and stuck the track in a lake. So I passed.
I looked at printers, because I’m always looking for a networked printer that fits in the small space in the desk. I found one. There it was. Shazaam. But I declined to buy it, because, well, I just don’t have robust and complex home-network printing needs. “I’ll just sneakernet the files to the printer,” I told the salesperson.
He nodded, having no idea what I was talking about.
Friday night: the eco-play at the school. Performance enjoyed by all. A certain amount of unlearning had to be undertaken in the car on the way home from rehearsal, though; the lyrics to one of the songs posited the interesting notion that all lives are equal – human, animal, lizard, insect, unicellular organism, etc. The technical term for this in my world is pernicious twaddle, and happily it’s easy to convince a seven-year-old that her life has more worth than a tadpole. The play posited several practical ways to Save the Planet, elementary-school style, and one of them was picking up trash. It reminded me of an anti-trash-collection initiative the city undertook a few years ago: in our neighborhood several trash cans were removed from the street because the city didn’t want to pay for them. They asked local businesses to pay. One business declined, perhaps because they’d had to pay for metal window shades to fend off robbers, and were skint for the moment. So the trash can – located right by a bus stop – was removed, and consequently people just threw their stuff in the gutter before they boarded the bus. Eventually the business just started policing the corner on their own, since it was bad for the trade to have heaps of rubbish outside the store.
That said, it’s pretty clean around here. There’s not a lot of trash in the creek. Hardly any. The worst pollution in the woods around the creek is visual – graffiti, mostly. Put up a new bridge rail and it’ll be sharpied up with illiterate squibbles in a day. Same with the lake. People don’t toss stuff when they’re walking around the lake. But at some point you realize you’re watching a play about scientist dogs who have a solar-powered lab under the lake, and the dogs are contemptuously deriding humans for using petroleum products, and who argue for “growing our fuel” AND “ending hunger,” and you just have to let it go.
It’s lonely here sometimes.
I’m watching “The China Syndrome” right now. Michael Douglas plays the camera man, and 12 minutes into the movie he’s already noted that the nuclear fuel is the same stuff they make nuclear weapons out of. Man. I’d love to see fleets and fleets of electric cars powered by nuclear-power plants, but if I said that in polite company I might as well admit I like to put on a Nazi arm band and feed kittens to a band saw.
Did they really wear jean jackets and Levis in the control rooms of nuclear reactors in 1978? I’d hate to think this movie was anything but scrupulously accurate.
Hah! Michael Douglas pronounces it “nu-cu-lyr.”
New Match; see you at Buzz.mn.