Humor

TACHYON WAVES, WARP DRIVE, AND INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINES

Garry and I have been watching “Star Trek: Next Generation.” We missed the show’s initial run. 1987 through 1994 were our busiest years. Rebuilding a life. Restarting a career. Buying houses. Getting married. Moving. Moving again.

Watching TV wasn’t a big item on our agenda.

BBC America is showing the series, albeit not in any particular order. We are catching up, watching two or three episodes per night.

star trek next gen cast

They do a lot of tech talk on the Enterprise. I accept it with alacrity. No problem. Pass the warp drive. I’ll have a side order of tachyon particles. I understand that science as well as I understand ours.

Which is to say, not at all. Tachyon energy is crucial to all kinds of weaponry and fuel. They are part of what powers the warp engines on the Enterprise. The warp engines are what lets the Enterprise be the Enterprise, travel at speeds faster than light … fast enough to explore the universe. Slither through wormholes. Travel through time.

For your information, a tachyon particle moves faster than light. The complementary particle types are luxon (particles which move at the speed of light) and bradyon (particles which move slower than light). If you live in the Star Trek universe, tachyon particles are as common as dirt. Or electricity.

I understand exactly as much about tachyon waves and warp drives as I do about the internal combustion engine. True, I studied this stuff in junior high school (middle school to you kids). The information didn’t “take,” and whatever is going on under my car’s hood is a mystery. As is the electricity that powers this computer. As is all technology.

enterprise next gen

Effectively, everything is a mystery. I understand the technology of the 24th century exactly as well (and as much) as I understand the technology of the 21st. I am equally comfortable in both.

How many of you know how the stuff you use all the time works? I know how software is designed, how code is written and compiled. I used to know how to do a little coding. In the end, though, I have no idea why code does anything. Why, when you compile a program, does it work? It’s just text. Why does it do what it does?

Why does anything work? Tachyon particles, warp drives, internal combustion engines, electricity, cell phones, WiFi. It’s all the same. Magic.

And now, back to the Enterprise, already in progress.

AS THE YEAR DRAWS TO AN END – SHARING MY WORLD, WEEK 49

tree and dolls

CEE’S SHARE YOUR WORLD WEEK 49 – CLOSING IN ON A NEW YEAR

What is your preferred hot drink: coffee, tea, water, hot chocolate, or other?

Coffee still gets the number one sport. I like everything else too. Hot chocolate, tea, mulled cider … but coffee is my jump-start on the day.

Without it, I feel like I’m pushing my car up a hill that never ends. Lately, it’s vanilla-flavored coffee, but it may be hazelnut next week. Or plain Columbian bean. As long as it’s hot and fresh, I want it.

What was your favorite toy as a child  . . .  and now?

Annabelle

Annabelle

I was passionate about dolls and oddly, I still am. I have nearly 300 of them. On shelves, in boxes, in display cabinets. Most of them hard plastic dolls of the 1940s,1950s, and early 1960s.

A few older ones made of composite — basically sawdust and glue, which is what they made dolls from before hard plastic injection molding came of age.

Candy factories of the entire world have become one and will now be making only one kind of candy.

Which kind, if you were calling the shots?

Only ONE? That’s rough. I need two … one for dark chocolate, the other for crystallized ginger.

ginger-1

if I had to give up one of the two, I’d go with ginger. But I’d miss the chocolate. A lot.

Would you want $100,000 right now or $120,000 in a year (tax Free)?

I’d take it now. Because I could pay off all the bills leaving just the mortgage. I’d make up the remaining money in no time flat just by not having all those bills to pay. Life would get considerably easier here given a sizable infusion of cash. Very much easier and a lot more fun. Could you toss in a new car, too? With 4-wheel drive please?

UNFASHIONABLY DRESSED FOR KICKING BUCKETS

Kick the Bucket?

Whose bucket? Not my bucket. Because I don’t have a bucket. I also don’t have a “never” list because most of my life seems to have been made up of things I was never going to do, buying things I never thought I’d need. Going places I would never go. Working at jobs I never knew existed. Learning things I though too unimportant to bother with.

Most of my “Nevers” turned out to be edible words which aren’t tasty. As I have aged and a modicum of commonsense has taken charge of my mouth, I’ve learned to never say “never.” If you say “I will never do (fill in the blank),” you are guaranteeing you will do it. Those luscious words ere spoke are noticeably less yummy when you have to choke them back down.

Marilyn Herself 9

We are going to a party today. Before exiting the bedroom, I made a rare side trip and took a look at the “good clothes” part of my closet. I discovered all of my dress clothing is black. Not most of it. ALL of it. No matter how I configure it. The dresses are black, the pants are black. The sweaters, tunics and jackets are black.

Finally, after all these years, I know why everything is black. Yes, world, there are actual reasons and here are mine:

  1. Black makes you look thinner, usually.
  2. Black doesn’t show where you dribbled pasta sauce down your front.
  3. Jewelry looks great against black.

I am also set for any funeral I might have to attend on the fly.

Fashion issues don’t arise until I get all the way down to my feet. High (or even medium to low) heels and I parted ways years ago. I am too wobbly nowadays and I won’t risk my ankles. Also, the air gets thin when I have to walk around on my toes. Not to mention the pain.

None of my dressy clothing looks good with clogs. It looks even dopier with Uggs.

When (if) we talk about fashion, I am not even a tangential part of the conversation. Do we talk about fashion? Other than to make snarky comments about how hideous some celebrity looks? Do I even know “what’s in” for the adult set? I can tell you what teenagers are wearing. I have a granddaughter and she’s quite the little fashion plate … but grownups?

What are the over-40 set wearing? Just wondering. Because today, I have to go to a party and have no idea what to wear.

Oh, I just got a flash! New black yoga pants. Black sweater. Lots of silver and turquoise jewelry. Something on my feet. Everyone will notice the jewelry; no one will notice my clothing.

It’s a plan!

ALPHABETIC DRIVEL

As I busy myself, casually doodling on my little pad of paper, everything seems flat. I don’t know why I’m doing this. It doesn’t make me feel good or happy. It’s just something keep my little hands busy. Make work. Nothing important.

75-051214-Sunlight_13

Oh how I yearn for the day when prompts or quotes offered real inspiration. Sad to be trying to come up with something unusual, or at least mildly interesting. Vaguely wondering how long I’m going to keep this up when I know it’s not going anywhere and no one will see it.

Maybe I’ll get an x-ray of my so-called brain. See if I’ve still got one. You can check back tomorrow for results. Bet you’ll find a blank page. Zero equals zero.

Not that it matters, but today’s Daily Prompt is “Alphabet Soup.” No pingbacks.

RAMBLINGS OF A SLEEP DEPRIVED RED SOX FAN

Not being able to sleep is a serious bummer. In my case, it’s my back. I can’t find a comfortable position and the drugs that are supposed to make me sleep are not nearly as strong as the back pain. It’s not that I don’t sleep at all. I sleep a little. Restless, light sleep and then I’m up again. Waking and sleeping and waking again. As I said: Bummer.

Sunrise

It gives me a lot of time to think during those long, uncomfortable nights. I think about what I should do that I haven’t done. I really get myself going by thinking about what I did do that I shouldn’t have done. Best of all, there is what I should have done differently. In that direction lies true madness and I don’t recommend it.

Eventually, I crawl out of bed, get sort of dressed. I turn on the coffee, throw the dogs out into the cruel world to do their business, then settle into the recliner in the living room. Blearily drinking coffee as the sun sort of rises. It’s been grey and dark for the past three days, so it never really feels like daytime has come and sunrise is just a slightly lighter color grey than night.

Right before bed last night, Garry and I were having a conversation. It was a reminder of why I love that man. We were talking about baseball. For those of you who aren’t fans and don’t follow this stuff, the “winter meetings” are in progress. This is when teams dig into their pockets, pull out their checkbooks, and negotiate with players.  Whatever the holes in their lineups — pitching, hitting, fielding — they are going to try to sign players to fill the roster for the coming year. Hopefully, for a lot longer than just one season.

fenway_480x200

The Red Sox, our home team, traded away pretty much the entire pitching staff at the end of last season in favor of a bunch of sluggers. Not that it helped much because we still managed to get a firm grip on last place and hold it to the bitter end.

So, no one is arguing they didn’t need the offensive players, but perhaps they might have shown a bit more restraint in cutting loose people like Jon Lester, who clearly didn’t want to be traded and is the el primo pitcher in baseball. This week, as the meetings continue, they are trying — balls to the wall — to get him to come back to Boston — and he isn’t playing nice. No home town discounts this round of talks.

I said “They over-estimated their ability to sweet-talk him back to Boston.”

Garry said “They over-estimated their clout at the winter meetings.”

I said “They under-estimated how pissed off he was at getting traded.

And Garry summed it up. “Hubris,” he said. “Hubris. Gets them every time.”

Hubris: (noun) Excessive pride or self-confidence. Synonyms: arrogance, conceit, haughtiness, hauteur, pride, self-importance, egotism, pomposity, superciliousness, superiority; more. Antonyms: humility
(In Greek tragedy) Excessive pride toward, or defiance of, the gods, leading to nemesis.

“Hubris,” I agreed. “That covers the whole thing.” After which we stumbled off to bed.

But in how many husband-wife discussions does “hubris” figure? Not a lot, in my experience. That we can have conversations like this and not have to say “Come again?” or “What do you mean by that?” makes a world of difference, to me at least.

Better yet, it was all about baseball. They should have held on to Lester. Especially in view of the fact that Lester just signed with the Chicago Cubs for 6 years at $155,000,000 with a 7th vesting year that could take the contract up to $170,000,000.

Theo Epstein, who left the Red Sox with a mad on because they didn’t treat him well — and Lester, who was unceremoniously traded by the Red Sox against his wishes and thus also departed with a mad on, got together to jointly stick it to the Red Sox. I’m sure they are both smiling. Chicago has reason to celebrate while Boston scrambles to find a couple of top-quality pitchers. Good luck with that.

Hubris, hubris, hubris.


(Note: In case the Daily Prompt gets their act together this is part of today’s dysfunctional prompt: All or Nothing? – “Perhaps when we find ourselves wanting everything, it is because we are dangerously close to wanting nothing.” — Sylvia Plath

The Red Sox wanted everything. I hope they don’t end up with nothing.

WHAT WERE THEY DOING IN GOMORRAH?

For the last few days, I’ve been adrift. Mentally. Physically, I’m where I always am. In my living room. In the love seat. Surrounded by dogs, husband. Topped with a computer and convenient to the kitchen, in case I get peckish.

So. What’s on my mind? Gomorrah. I’m thinking about Gomorrah. Aren’t you?

God smote Sodom and Gomorrah. Poor wife of Lot got turned into a pillar of salt. Yahweh was pretty upset about it. Whatever it was.

We all know what got them smote in Sodom, but what horrible deeds were being done in the other zapped city? What twisted vices were practiced in Gomorrah?

Picture: John Martin

Picture: John Martin

Can one be gomorrah-ized?

If the answer is yes … {pause} … is gomorrah-ization fatal? Assuming, of course, that one has does not been smote (smitten?) by a pissed off deity. Smiting (getting smote?) can have permanent repercussions.

Will antibiotics help? Have we yet found a cure? Are we even searching for a cure? Does anyone, other than me, care?

All of these question swirl around my brain. So many questions without any answers.

LEWIS CARROLL — HOW DOTH THE LITTLE CROCODILE

How Doth the Little Crocodile” appears in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Recited by Alice in Chapter 2, it describes a crocodile who lures fish into its mouth with a smile.

How Doth the Little Crocodile

Lewis Carroll

How doth the little crocodile
Improve his shining tail,
And pour the waters of the Nile
On every golden scale!

How cheerfully he seems to grin
How neatly spreads his claws,
And welcomes little fishes in,
With gently smiling jaws!

I suspect it’s the source of the idea for “Never Smile at a Crocodile” in Disney’s animated “Peter Pan” (1953).


It parodies a popular Victorian children’s poem:

How Doth the Little Busy Bee

Isaac Watts

How doth the little busy bee
Improve each shining hour,
And gather honey all the day
From every opening flower!

How skilfully she builds her cell!
How neat she spreads the wax!
And labors hard to store it well
With the sweet food she makes.

In works of labor or of skill,
I would be busy too;
For Satan finds some mischief still
For idle hands to do.

In books, or work, or healthful play,
Let my first years be passed,
That I may give for every day
Some good account at last.

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