Saturday, February 16, 2013

2012 (DA 14) A Space Oddity

2012 DA 14 escaped from the Asteroid Belt.Who can blame it ! Imagine drifting around in an imperfect circle  for a billion years.No internet, no TV, nothing to read, nobody to chat with...Nothing to do  except  tolerate a lot of surreal pebbles wobbling past you.

DA 14 flew past our planet yesterday. They say it came dangerously close. Really ? So long as it didn't cause a jam on Sheikh Zayed Road , Dubai, UAE  I'm okay with the distance.

Besides, not only was it not visible to the naked eye,I couldn't even see it with my glasses on. And you know how it is with  telescopes.You go in to buy one and come out with a smartphone instead.It's all pretty much more Android than asteroid out there.

Oh yeah,another thing the Asteroid Belt lacks is fun apps. Let alone Angry Birds , you'd be lucky  to find even a mildly upset one.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Famous Lost Words

Why do murder victims in crime stories go all cryptic when they die ?

Take the Sherlock Holmes story The Speckled Band. It would have been so much easier for Julie to have just said 'snake'. No, but she has to get her dying tongue in a twist with "".

How you'd love the coroner's report to read : "Died from the strain of thinking up a cryptic phrase to build the plot. Death by stupidity. Signed."

By the way, if you haven't read The Speckled Band , don't bother now. It was a snake. My apologies. In my defence , I didn't put it there.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day

It's Valentine's Day. Lucky stiff. I bet there's no day named after you !

But who is this Valentine who sends people into paroxysms of  Hallmark handing, bouquet buying, gift giving and dinner dating  ? What is his age and gender ? And height and weight ? What are his hobbies ? What is his favorite color ? Red , I'm guessing. What does he do on weekends  and what are his politics ? 

What are his views on the financial crisis and should they matter ? Did he lie to his mother as a child?  Did his father frequently spank his bottom and has that altered his psyche? How does he conduct himself in a crowded elevator : does he look up or down ? Where does he stand on Global Warming ? 

Nobody knows. You can't think of many other people we know so little about who have had days named after them - reassuringly tiny, note, as that number already is.  

Take St. Patrick. No , hang on. Don't  take St. Patrick. Because you don't anyway. I mean, know anybody who is moved to sweet nothings on account of St.P ? Or to wear bright red shirts ? Or to  hang up bright red hearts on their walls ? 

Unlike many other famous people though, I don't think there are  things like airports, train stations , streets and localities named after Valentine.Nor are there any Valentine postage stamps.

That's smart planning. I mean, picture this at a post office : 
Mailman 1 (wincing) : "Where's that - ugh-  red heart stamp going ?"
Mailman 2 : " To my dustbin" (tosses package to bin)

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

It's Looking Up , Is It ?

It's morning and you're running horribly late. After waiting for an eternity - during which time it has twice passed you by -you finally get into the elevator. It stops on the fifth floor where an amiable looking gentleman has a question for you.

"Going up?" quoth he.

If the following sequence on the panel -- 22,21,20,19,18,17,16,15,14,13,12,11,10,9,8,7,6,5 -
along with a well lit down arrow suggested that the elevator was going up , who are you to say no ?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Salesperson Service

All of you sell the same products with the same features and the same prices. So what do you do ? Why, hire  identically morose, rude, disinterested and unlikable salespeople to go with them of course. 

I was out  shopping for a telly  last weekend and having a really hard time deciding between brands.The guy at the first store was so m,r,d and u that it helped : i just walked out of there. The  guy at the second place was no different. Perhaps a bit less r  but also possibly a bit more d. I mean he did attempt a smile and, had a yawn not got in the way, would even have succeeded.

I finally bought my box at a shop where the chappie's body language didn't suggest that he'd either kill or self destruct at the idea of making a sale. That he actually bothered to compare as many as two different models - even going  so  far as to demonstrate half of one - was  further impetus.

Good thing I have such a half-baked conscience. A fully baked one would have constantly reminded me, each time I switched on the TV, of the pain i inflicted on this stoic fellow whose moments of idle leisure i'd so thoughtlessly intruded into. It was definitely very poor Salesperson Service on my part.