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Proverbs, aphorisms, quotations (English) by Linux fortune

        A circus foreman was making the rounds inspecting the big top
when a scrawny little man entered the tent and walked up to him.  "Are
you the foreman around here?" he asked timidly.  "I'd like to join your
circus; I have what I think is a pretty good act."
        The foreman nodded assent, whereupon the little man hurried over to
the main pole and rapidly climbed up to the very tip-top of the big top.
Drawing a deep breath, he hurled himself off into the air and began flapping
his arms furiously.  Amazingly, rather than plummeting to his death the little
man began to fly all around the poles, lines, trapezes and other obstacles,
performing astounding feats of aerobatics which ended in a long power dive
from the top of the tent, pulling up into a gentle feet-first landing beside
the foreman, who had been nonchalantly watching the whole time.
        "Well," puffed the little man.  "What do you think?"
        "That's all you do?" answered the foreman scornfully.  "Bird
imitations?"
        A hard-luck actor who appeared in one coloossal disaster after another
finally got a break, a broken leg to be exact.  Someone pointed out that it's
the first time the poor fellow's been in the same cast for more than a week.
A Hollywood producer calls a friend, another producer on the phone.
        "Hello?" his friend answers.
        "Hi!" says the man.  "This is Bob, how are you doing?"
        "Oh," says the friend, "I'm doing great!  I just sold a screenplay
for two hundred thousand dollars.  I've started a novel adaptation and the
studio advanced me fifty thousand dollars on it.  I also have a television
series coming on next week, and everyone says it's going to be a big hit!
I'm doing *great*!  How are you?"
        "Okay," says the producer, "give me a call when he leaves."
        A musician of more ambition than talent composed an elegy at
the death of composer Edward MacDowell.  She played the elegy for the
pianist Josef Hoffman, then asked his opinion.  "Well, it's quite
nice," he replied, but don't you think it would be better if..."
        "If what?" asked the composer.
        "If ... if you had died and MacDowell had written the elegy?"
A rose is a rose is a rose.  Just ask Jean Marsh, known to millions of
PBS viewers in the '70s as Rose, the maid on the LWT export "Upstairs,
Downstairs."  Though Marsh has since gone on to other projects, ... it's
with Rose she's forever identified.  So much so that she even likes to
joke about having one named after her, a distinction not without its
drawbacks.  "I was very flattered when I heard about it, but when I looked
up the official description, it said, `Jean Marsh: pale peach, not very
good in beds; better up against a wall.'  I want to tell you that's not
true.  I'm very good in beds as well."
Actresses will happen in the best regulated families.
                -- Addison Mizner and Oliver Herford, "The Entirely
                New Cynic's Calendar", 1905
An actor's a guy who if you ain't talkin' about him, ain't listening.
                -- Marlon Brando
Another possible source of guidance for teenagers is television, but
television's message has always been that the need for truth, wisdom and
world peace pales by comparison with the need for a toothpaste that offers
whiter teeth *___and* fresher breath.
                -- Dave Barry, "Kids Today: They Don't Know Dum Diddly Do"
Best Mistakes In Films
        In his "Filmgoer's Companion", Mr. Leslie Halliwell helpfully lists
four of the cinema's greatest moments which you should get to see if at all
possible.
        In "Carmen Jones", the camera tracks with Dorothy Dandridge down a
street; and the entire film crew is reflected in the shop window.
        In "The Wrong Box", the roofs of Victorian London are emblazoned
with television aerials.
        In "Decameron Nights", Louis Jourdain stands on the deck of his
fourteenth century pirate ship; and a white lorry trundles down the hill
in the background.
        In "Viking Queen", set in the times of Boadicea, a wrist watch is
clearly visible on one of the leading characters.
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
Burnt Sienna.  That's the best thing that ever happened to Crayolas.
                -- Ken Weaver
Can't act.  Slightly bald.  Also dances.
                -- RKO executive, reacting to Fred Astaire's screen test.
                   Cerf/Navasky, "The Experts Speak"
Classical music is the kind we keep thinking will turn into a tune.
                -- Kin Hubbard, "Abe Martin's Sayings"
Ever get the feeling that the world's on tape and one of the reels is missing?
                -- Rich Little
For myself, I can only say that I am astonished and somewhat terrified at
the results of this evening's experiments.  Astonished at the wonderful
power you have developed, and terrified at the thought that so much hideous
and bad music may be put on record forever.
                -- Sir Arthur Sullivan, message to Edison, 1888
FORTUNE DISCUSSES THE OBSCURE FILMS: #12

O.E.D.:                                David Lean, 1969, 3 hours 30 min.

        Lean's version of the Oxford Dictionary has been accused of
        shallowness in its treatment of a complete work.  Omar Sharif
        tends to overact as aardvark, but Alec Guiness is solid in
        the role of abbacy.  As usual, the photography is stunning.
        With Julie Christie.
FORTUNE DISCUSSES THE OBSCURE FILMS: #3

MIRACLE ON 42ND STREET:
        Santa Claus, in the off season, follows his heart's desire and
        tries to make it big on Broadway.  Santa sings and dances his way
        into your heart.
FORTUNE DISCUSSES THE OBSCURE FILMS: #9

THE PARKING PROBLEM IN PARIS:        Jean-Luc Godard, 1971, 7 hours 18 min.

        Godard's meditation on the topic has been described as
        everything from "timeless" to "endless."  (Remade by Gene
        Wilder as NO PLACE TO PARK.)
FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL:                #37
        Can you name the seven seas?
                Antartic, Artic, North Atlantic, South Atlantic, Indian,
                North Pacific, South Pacific.
        Can you name the seven dwarfs from Snow White?
                Doc, Dopey, Sneezy, Happy, Grumpy, Sleepy and Bashful.
G. B. Shaw to William Douglas Home: "Go on writing plays, my boy.  One
of these days a London producer will go into his office and say to his
secretary, `Is there a play from Shaw this morning?' and when she says
`No,' he will say, `Well, then we'll have to start on the rubbish.' And
that's your chance, my boy."
Governor Tarkin.  I should have expected to find you holding Vader's
leash.  I thought I recognized your foul stench when I was brought on board.
                -- Princess Leia Organa
Grig (the navigator):
        ... so you see, it's just the two of us against the entire space
        armada.
Alex (the gunner):
        What?!?
Grig:        I've always wanted to fight a desperate battle against
        overwhelming odds.
Alex:        It'll be a slaughter!
Grig:        That's the spirit!
                -- The Last Starfighter
        "Hawk, we're going to die."
        "Never say die... and certainly never say we."
                -- M*A*S*H
Hello.  Jim Rockford's machine, this is Larry Doheny's machine.  Will you
please have your master call my master at his convenience?  Thank you.
Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.
                -- "The Rockford Files"
I distrust a close-mouthed man.  He generally picks the wrong time to talk
and says the wrong things.  Talking's something you can't do judiciously,
unless you keep in practice.  Now, sir, we'll talk if you like.  I'll tell
you right out, I'm a man who likes talking to a man who likes to talk.
                -- Sidney Greenstreet, "The Maltese Falcon"
I dread success.  To have succeeded is to have finished one's business on
earth, like the male spider, who is killed by the female the moment he has
succeeded in his courtship.  I like a state of continual becoming, with a
goal in front and not behind.
                -- George Bernard Shaw
I have had my television aerials removed.  It's the moral equivalent
of a prostate operation.
                -- Malcolm Muggeridge
I think...  I think it's in my basement... Let me go upstairs and check.
                -- Escher
I went into the business for the money, and the art grew out of it.  If
people are disillusioned by that remark, I can't help it.  It's the truth.
                -- Charlie Chaplin
I wish there was a knob on the TV to turn up the intelligence.  There's a
knob called "brightness", but it doesn't seem to work.
                -- Gallagher
  I. Any body suspended in space will remain in space until made aware of
     its situation.
        Daffy Duck steps off a cliff, expecting further pastureland.  He
        loiters in midair, soliloquizing flippantly, until he chances to
        look down.  At this point, the familiar principle of 32 feet per
        second per second takes over.
II. Any body in motion will tend to remain in motion until solid matter
     intervenes suddenly.
        Whether shot from a cannon or in hot pursuit on foot, cartoon
        characters are so absolute in their momentum that only a telephone
        pole or an outsize boulder retards their forward motion absolutely.
        Sir Isaac Newton called this sudden termination of motion the
        stooge's surcease.
III. Any body passing through solid matter will leave a perforation
     conforming to its perimeter.
        Also called the silhouette of passage, this phenomenon is the
        speciality of victims of directed-pressure explosions and of reckless
        cowards who are so eager to escape that they exit directly through
        the wall of a house, leaving a cookie-cutout-perfect hole.  The
        threat of skunks or matrimony often catalyzes this reaction.
                -- Esquire, "O'Donnell's Laws of Cartoon Motion", June 1980
If all the world's a stage, I want to operate the trap door.
                -- Paul Beatty
If Beethoven's Seventh Symphony is not by some means abridged, it will soon
fall into disuse.
                -- Philip Hale, Boston music critic, 1837
If you lose a son you can always get another, but there's only one
Maltese Falcon.
                -- Sidney Greenstreet, "The Maltese Falcon"
If you want to get rich from writing, write the sort of thing that's
read by persons who move their lips when the're reading to themselves.
                -- Don Marquis
Immature poets imitate, mature poets steal.
                -- T.S. Eliot, "Philip Massinger"
In Hollywood, all marriages are happy.  It's trying to live together
afterwards that causes the problems.
                -- Shelley Winters
In my experience, if you have to keep the lavatory door shut by extending
your left leg, it's modern architecture.
                -- Nancy Banks Smith
In the force if Yoda's so strong, construct a sentence with words in
the proper order then why can't he?
In the Old West a wagon train is crossing the plains.  As night falls the
wagon train forms a circle, and a campfire is lit in the middle.  After
everyone has gone to sleep two lone cavalry officers stand watch over the
camp.
        After several hours of quiet, they hear war drums starting from
a nearby Indian village they had passed during the day.  The drums get
louder and louder.
        Finally one soldier turns to the other and says, "I don't like
the sound of those drums."
        Suddenly, they hear a cry come from the Indian camp:  "IT'S
NOT OUR REGULAR DRUMMER."
It just doesn't seem right to go over the river and through the woods
to Grandmother's condo.
It looks like it's up to me to save our skins.  Get into that garbage chute,
flyboy!
                -- Princess Leia Organa
It's all right letting yourself go as long as you can let yourself back.
                -- Mick Jagger
It's clever, but is it art?
It's difficult to see the picture when you are inside the frame.
It's from Casablanca.  I've been waiting all my life to use that line.
                -- Woody Allen, "Play It Again, Sam"
"It's kind of fun to do the impossible."
                -- Walt Disney
It's more than magnificent -- it's mediocre.
                -- Sam Goldwyn
It's not easy, being green.
                -- Kermit the Frog
It's not the valleys in life I dread so much as the dips.
                -- Garfield
IV. The time required for an object to fall twenty stories is greater than or
    equal to the time it takes for whoever knocked it off the ledge to
    spiral down twenty flights to attempt to capture it unbroken.
        Such an object is inevitably priceless, the attempt to capture it
        inevitably unsuccessful.
V. All principles of gravity are negated by fear.
        Psychic forces are sufficient in most bodies for a shock to propel
        them directly away from the earth's surface.  A spooky noise or an
        adversary's signature sound will induce motion upward, usually to
        the cradle of a chandelier, a treetop, or the crest of a flagpole.
        The feet of a character who is running or the wheels of a speeding
        auto need never touch the ground, especially when in flight.
VI. As speed increases, objects can be in several places at once.
        This is particularly true of tooth-and-claw fights, in which a
        character's head may be glimpsed emerging from the cloud of
        altercation at several places simultaneously.  This effect is common
        as well among bodies that are spinning or being throttled.  A "wacky"
        character has the option of self-replication only at manic high
        speeds and may ricochet off walls to achieve the velocity required.
                -- Esquire, "O'Donnell's Laws of Cartoon Motion", June 1980
James McNeill Whistler's (painter of "Whistler's Mother")
failure in his West Point chemistry examination once provoked him to
remark in later life, "If silicon had been a gas, I should have been a
major general."
Jane and I got mixed up with a television show -- or as we call it back
east here: TV -- a clever contraction derived from the words Terrible
Vaudeville. However, it is our latest medium -- we call it a medium
because nothing's well done. It was discovered, I suppose you've heard,
by a man named Fulton Berle, and it has already revolutionized social
grace by cutting down parlour conversation to two sentences: "What's on
television?" and "Good night".
                -- Goodman Ace, letter to Groucho Marx, in The Groucho
                   Letters, 1967
Jim, it's Grace at the bank.  I checked your Christmas Club account.
You don't have five-hundred dollars.  You have fifty.  Sorry, computer foul-up!
                -- "The Rockford Files"
Jim, it's Jack.  I'm at the airport.  I'm going to Tokyo and wanna pay
you the five-hundred I owe you.  Catch you next year when I get back!
                -- "The Rockford Files"
Jim, this is Janelle.  I'm flying tonight, so I can't make our date, and
I gotta find a safe place for Daffy.  He loves you, Jim!  It's only two
days, and you'll see.  Great Danes are no problem!
                -- "The Rockford Files"
Jim, this is Matty down at Ralph's and Mark's.  Some guy named Angel
Martin just ran up a fifty buck bar tab.  And now he wants to charge it
to you.  You gonna pay it?
                -- "The Rockford Files"
Just close your eyes, tap your heels together three times, and think to
yourself, `There's no place like home.'
                -- Glynda the Good
Lamonte Cranston once hired a new Chinese manservant.  While describing his
duties to the new man, Lamonte pointed to a bowl of candy on the coffee
table and warned him that he was not to take any.  Some days later, the new
manservant was cleaning up, with no one at home, and decided to sample some
of the candy.  Just than, Cranston walked in, spied the manservant at the
candy, and said:
        "Pardon me Choy, is that the Shadow's nugate you chew?"
        Lassie looked brilliant, in part because the farm family she
lived with was made up of idiots.  Remember?  One of them was always
getting pinned under the tractor, and Lassie was always rushing back to
the farmhouse to alert the other ones.  She'd whimper and tug at their
sleeves, and they'd always waste precious minutes saying things: "Do
you think something's wrong?  Do you think she wants us to follow her?
What is it, girl?", etc., as if this had never happened before, instead
of every week.  What with all the time these people spent pinned under
the tractor, I don't see how they managed to grow any crops whatsoever.
They probably got by on federal crop supports, which Lassie filed the
applications for.
                -- Dave Barry
Lay off the muses, it's a very tough dollar.
                -- S.J. Perelman
        Leslie West heads for the sticks, to Providence, Rhode Island and
tries to hide behind a beard.  No good.  There are still too many people
and too many stares, always taunting, always smirking.  He moves to the
outskirts of town. He finds a place to live -- huge mansion, dirt cheap,
caretaker included.  He plugs in his guitar and plays as loud as he wants,
day and night, and there's no one to laugh or boo or even look bored.
        Nobody's cut the grass in months.  What's happened to that caretaker?
What neighborhood people there are start to talk, and what kids there are
start to get curious.  A 13 year-old blond with an angelic face misses supper.
Before the summer's end, four more teenagers have disappeared.  The senior
class president, Barnard-bound come autumn, tells Mom she's going out to a
movie one night and stays out.  The town's up in arms, but just before the
police take action, the kids turn up.  They've found a purpose.  They go
home for their stuff and tell the folks not to worry but they'll be going
now.  They're in a band.
                -- Ira Kaplan
Like ya know?  Rock 'N Roll is an esoteric language that unlocks the
creativity chambers in people's brains, and like totally activates their
essential hipness, which of course is like totally necessary for saving
the earth, like because the first thing in saving this world, is getting
rid of stupid and square attitudes and having fun.
                -- Senior Year Quote
Linus:        Hi!  I thought it was you.
        I've been watching you from way off...  You're looking great!
Snoopy:        That's nice to know.
        The secret of life is to look good at a distance.
Linus:        I guess it's wrong always to be worrying about tomorrow.  Maybe
        we should think only about today.
Charlie Brown:
        No, that's giving up.  I'm still hoping that yesterday will get
        better.
Live from New York ... It's Saturday Night!
Mandrell: "You know what I think?"
Doctor:   "Ah, ah that's a catch question. With a brain your size you
          don't think, right?"
                -- Dr. Who
Maryel brought her bat into Exit once and started whacking people on
the dance floor.  Now everyone's doing it.  It's called grand slam dancing.
                -- Ransford, Chicago Reader 10/7/83
"Microwave oven?  Whaddya mean, it's a microwave oven?  I've been watching
Channel 4 on the thing for two weeks."
Mr. Rockford?  This is Betty Joe Withers.  I got four shirts of yours from
the Bo Peep Cleaners by mistake.  I don't know why they gave me men's
shirts but they're going back.
                -- "The Rockford Files"
My advice to you, my violent friend, is to seek out gold and sit on it.
                -- The Dragon to Grendel, in John Gardner's "Grendel"
No poet or novelist wishes he was the only one who ever lived, but most of
them wish they were the only one alive, and quite a number fondly believe
their wish has been granted.
                -- W.H. Auden, "The Dyer's Hand"
        "Oh sure, this costume may look silly, but it lets me get in and out
of dangerous situations -- I work for a federal task force doing a survey on
urban crime.  Look, here's my ID, and here's a number you can call, that will
put you through to our central base in Atlanta.  Go ahead, call -- they'll
confirm who I am.
        "Unless, of course, the Astro-Zombies have destroyed it."
                -- Captain Freedom
Oh, Aunty Em, it's so good to be home!
        Penn's aunts made great apple pies at low prices.  No one else in
town could compete with the pie rates of Penn's aunts.
People in general do not willingly read if they have anything else to
amuse them.
                -- S. Johnson
Plots are like girdles.  Hidden, they hold your interest; revealed, they're
of no interest except to fetishists. Like girdles, they attempt to contain
an uncontainable experience.
                -- R.S. Knapp
Potahto' Pictures Productions Presents:

        SPUD ROGERS OF THE 25TH CENTURY: Story of an Air Force potato that's
left in a rarely used chow hall for over two centuries and wakes up in a world
populated by soybean created imitations under the evil Dick Tater.  Thanks to
him, the soy-potatoes learn that being a 'tater is where it's at.  Memorable
line, "'Cause I'm just a stud spud!"

        FRIDAY THE 13TH DINER SERIES: Crazed potato who was left in a
fryer too long and was charbroiled carelessly returns to wreak havoc on
unsuspecting, would-be teen camp cooks.  Scenes include a girl being stuffed
with chives and Fleischman's Margarine and a boy served up on a side dish
with beets and dressing.  Definitely not for the squeamish, or those on
diets that are driving them crazy.

        FRIDAY THE 13TH DINER II,III,IV,V,VI: Much, much more of the same.
Except with sour cream.
Potahto' Pictures Productions Presents:

        THE TATERNATOR: Cyborg spud returns from the future to present-day
McDonald's restaurant to kill the potatoess (girl 'tater) who will give birth
to the world's largest french fry (The Dark Powers of Burger King are clearly
behind this).  Most quotable line: "Ah'll be baked..."

        A FISTFUL OF FRIES: Western in which our hero, The Spud with No Name,
rides into a town that's deprived of carbohydrates thanks to the evil takeover
of the low-cal Scallopinni Brothers.  Plenty of smokeouts, fry-em-ups, and
general butter-melting by all.

        FOR A FEW FRIES MORE: Takes up where AFOF left off!  Cameo by Walter
Cronkite, as every man's common 'tater!
Producers seem to be so prejudiced against actors who've had no training.
And there's no reason for it.  So what if I didn't attend the Royal Academy
for twelve years?  I'm still a professional trying to be the best actress
I can.  Why doesn't anyone send me the scripts that Faye Dunaway gets?
                -- Farrah Fawcett-Majors
Recently deceased blues guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan "comes to" after
his death.  He sees Jimi Hendrix sitting next to him, tuning his guitar.
"Holy cow," he thinks to himself, "this guy is my idol."  Over at the
microphone, about to sing, are Jim Morrison and Janis Joplin, and the
bassist is the late Barry Oakley of the Allman Brothers.  So Stevie
Ray's thinking, "Oh, wow!  I've died and gone to rock and roll heaven."
Just then, Karen Carpenter walks in, sits down at the drums, and says:
"'Close to You'.  Hit it, boys!"
                -- Told by Penn Jillette, of magic/comedy duo Penn and Teller
"Rembrandt's first name was Beauregard, which is why he never used it."
                -- Dave Barry
"She said, `I know you ... you cannot sing'.  I said, `That's nothing,
you should hear me play piano.'"
                -- Morrisey
Sir, it's very possible this asteroid is not stable.
                -- C3P0
Ten years of rejection slips is nature's way of telling you to stop writing.
                -- R. Geis
That's no moon...
                -- Obi-wan Kenobi
        The big problem with pornography is defining it.  You can't just
say it's pictures of people naked.  For example, you have these
primitive African tribes that exist by chasing the wildebeest on foot,
and they have to go around largely naked, because, as the old tribal
saying goes: "N'wam k'honi soit qui mali," which means, "If you think
you can catch a wildebeest in this climate and wear clothes at the same
time, then I have some beach front property in the desert region of
Northern Mali that you may be interested in."
        So it's not considered pornographic when National Geographic
publishes color photographs of these people hunting the wildebeest
naked, or pounding one rock onto another rock for some primitive reason
naked, or whatever.  But if National Geographic were to publish an
article entitled "The Girls of the California Junior College System
Hunt the Wildebeest Naked," some people would call it pornography.  But
others would not.  And still others, such as the Spectacularly Rev.
Jerry Falwell, would get upset about seeing the wildebeest naked.
                -- Dave Barry, "Pornography"
The Great Movie Posters:

*A Giggle Gurgling Gulp of Glee*
With Pretty Girls, Peppy Scenes, and Gorgeous Revues -- plus a good story.
                -- Tea with a Kick (1924)

Whoopie!  Let's go!... Hand-picked Beauties doing cute tricks!
GET IN THE KNOW FOR THE HEY-HEY WHOOPIE!
                -- The Wild Party (1929)

YOU HEAR HIM MAKE LOVE!
DIX -- the dashing soldier!
        DIX -- the bold adventurer!
                DIX -- the throbbing lover!
                -- The Wheel of Life (1929)

SEE CHARLES BUTTERWORTH DRIVE A STREETCAR AND SING LOVE
SONGS TO HIS MARE "MITZIE"!
                -- The Night is Young (1934)
The Great Movie Posters:

A mis-spawned murderous abomination from the nether reaches of an
unimaginable hell.
                -- The Killer of Castle Brood (1967)

NEW -- SICKENING HORROR to make your STOMACH TURN and FLESH CRAWL!
                -- Frankenstein's Bloody Terror (1968)

LUST-MAD MEN AND LAWLESS WOMEN IN A VICIOUS AND SENSUOUS ORGY OF SLAUGHTER!
                -- Five Bloody Graves (1969)

The family that slays together stays together.
                -- Bloody Mama (1970)
The Great Movie Posters:

An AVALANCHE of KILLER WORMS!
                -- Squirm (1976)

Most Movies Live Less Than Two Hours.
This Is One of Everlasting Torment!
                -- The New House on the Left (1977)

WE ARE GOING TO EAT YOU!
                -- Zombie (1980)

It's not human and it's got an axe.
                -- The Prey (1981)
The Great Movie Posters:

Different! Daring! Dynamic! Defying! Dumbfounding!
SEE Uncle Tom lead the Negroes to FREEDOM!
... Now, all the SENSUAL and VIOLENT passions Roots couldn't show on TV!
                -- Uncle Tom's Cabin (1972)

An appalling amalgam of carnage and carnality!
                -- Flesh and Blood Show (1973)

WHEN THE CATS ARE HUNGRY...
RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!
Alone, only a harmless pet...
        One Thousand Strong, They Become a Man-Eating Machine!
                -- The Night of a Thousand Cats (1972)

They're Over-Exposed
But Not Under-Developed!
                -- Cover Girl Models (1976)
The Great Movie Posters:

HOODLUMS FROM ANOTHER WORLD ON A RAY-GUN RAMPAGE!
                -- Teenagers from Outher Space (1959)

Which will be Her Mate... MAN OR BEAST?
Meet Velda -- the Kind of Woman -- Man or Gorilla would kill... to Keep.
                -- Untamed Mistress (1960)

NOW AN ALL-MIGHTY ALL-NEW MOTION PICTURE BRINGS THEM TOGETHER FOR THE
FIRST TIME...  HISTORY'S MOST GIGANTIC MONSTERS IN COMBAT ATOP MOUNT FUJI!
                -- King Kong vs. Godzilla (1963)
The Great Movie Posters:

SEE rebel guerrillas torn apart by trucks!
SEE corpses cut to pieces and fed to dogs and vultures!
SEE the monkey trained to perform nursing duties for her paralyzed owner!
                -- Sweet and Savage (1983)

What a Guy!  What a Gal!  What a Pair!
                -- Stroker Ace (1983)

It's always better when you come again!
                -- Porky's II: The Next Day (1983)

You Don't Have to Go to Texas for a Chainsaw Massacre!
                -- Pieces (1983)
The Great Movie Posters:

SHE TOOK ON A WHOLE GANG! A howling hellcat humping a hot steel hog
on a roaring rampage of revenge!
                -- Bury Me an Angel (1972)

WHAT'S THE SECRET INGREDIENT USED BY THE MAD BUTCHER FOR HIS SUPERB SAUSAGES?
                -- Meat is Meat (1972)

TODAY the Pond!
TOMORROW the World!
                -- Frogs (1972)
The Great Movie Posters:

She's got the biggest six-shooters in the West!
                -- The Beautiful Blonde from Bashful Bend (1949)

CAST OF 3,000!
4 WRITERS,
2 DIRECTORS,
3 CAMERAMEN,
3 PRODUCERS!
1 YEAR TO MAKE THIS FILM --
24 YEARS TO REHEARSE --
20 YEARS TO DISTRIBUTE!
        BEAUTIFUL BEYOND WORDS!
        AWE-INSPIRING! VITAL!
THE PRINCE OF PEACE PROVIDES THE ANSWER TO EVERY PROBLEM!
Be Brave--bring your troubles and your family to:
        HISTORY'S MOST SUBLIME EVENT! YOU'LL FIND GOD RIGHT IN THERE!
                -- The Prince of Peace (1948).  Starring members of the
                   Wichita Mountain Pageant featuring Millard Coody as Jesus.
The Great Movie Posters:

When You're Six Tons -- And They Call You Killer -- It's Hard To Make Friends...
                -- Namu, the Killer Whale (1966)

Meet the Girls with the Thermo-Nuclear Navels!
                -- Dr. Goldfoot and the Girl Bombs (1966)

A GHASTLY TALE DRENCHED WITH GOUTS OF BLOOD SPURTING FROM THE VICTIMS
OF A CRAZED MADMAN'S LUST.
                -- A Taste of Blood (1967)
The key to building a superstar is to keep their mouth shut.  To reveal
an artist to the people can be to destroy him.  It isn't to anyone's
advantage to see the truth.
                -- Bob Ezrin, rock music producer
The real trouble with reality is that there's no background music.
The Worst Musical Trio
        There are few bad musicians who have a chance to give a recital at
a famous concert hall while still learning the rudiments of their
instrument.  This happened about thirty years ago to the son of a Rumanian
gentleman who was owed a personal favour by Georges Enesco, the celebrated
violinist.  Enesco agreed to give lessons to the son who was quite
unhampered by great musical talent.
        Three years later the boy's father insisted that he give a public
concert.  "His aunt said that nobody plays the violin better than he does.
A cousin heard him the other day and screamed with enthusiasm."  Although
Enesco feared the consequences, he arranged a recital at the Salle Gaveau
in Paris.  However, nobody bought a ticket since the soloist was unknown.
        "Then you must accompany him on the piano," said the boy's father,
"and it will be a sell out."
        Reluctantly, Enesco agreed and it was.  On the night an excited
audience gathered.  Before the concert began Enesco became nervous and
asked for someone to turn his pages.
        In the audience was Alfred Cortot, the brilliant pianist, who
volunteered and made his way to the stage.
        The soloist was of uniformly low standard and next morning the
music critic of Le Figaro wrote: "There was a strange concert at the Salle
Gaveau last night.  The man whom we adore when he plays the violin played
the piano.  Another whom we adore when he plays the piano turned the pages.
But the man who should have turned the pages played the violin."
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
There are two jazz musicians who are great buddies.  They hang out and play
together for years, virtually inseparable.  Unfortunately, one of them is
struck by a truck and killed.  About a week later his friend wakes up in
the middle of the night with a start because he can feel a presence in the
room.  He calls out, "Who's there?  Who's there?  What's going on?"
        "It's me -- Bob," replies a faraway voice.
        Excitedly he sits up in bed.  "Bob!  Bob!  Is that you?  Where are
you?"
        "Well," says the voice, "I'm in heaven now."
        "Heaven!  You're in heaven!  That's wonderful!  What's it like?"
        "It's great, man.  I gotta tell you, I'm jamming up here every day.
I'm playing with Bird, and 'Trane, and Count Basie drops in all the time!
Man it is smokin'!"
        "Oh, wow!" says his friend. "That sounds fantastic, tell me more,
tell me more!"
        "Let me put it this way," continues the voice.  "There's good news
and bad news.  The good news is that these guys are in top form.  I mean
I have *never* heard them sound better.  They are *wailing* up here."
        "The bad news is that God has this girlfriend that sings..."
There's a trick to the Graceful Exit.  It begins with the vision to
recognize when a job, a life stage, a relationship is over -- and to let
go.  It means leaving what's over without denying its validity or its
past importance in our lives.  It involves a sense of future, a belief
that every exit line is an entry, that we are moving on, rather than out.
The trick of retiring well may be the trick of living well.  It's hard to
recognize that life isn't a holding action, but a process.  It's hard to
learn that we don't leave the best parts of ourselves behind, back in the
dugout or the office. We own what we learned back there.  The experiences
and the growth are grafted onto our lives.  And when we exit, we can take
ourselves along -- quite gracefully.
                -- Ellen Goodman
There's nothing remarkable about it.  All one has to do is hit the right
keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
                -- J.S. Bach
There's nothing to writing.  All you do is sit at a typewriter and open a vein.
                -- Red Smith
There's something the technicians need to learn from the artists.
If it isn't aesthetically pleasing, it's probably wrong.
There's such a thing as too much point on a pencil.
                -- H. Allen Smith, "Let the Crabgrass Grow"
This is Jim Rockford.
At the tone leave your name and message; I'll get back to you.

This is Maria, Liberty Bail Bonds.  Your client, Todd Lieman, skipped and
his bail is forfeit.  That's the pink slip on your '74 Firebird, I believe.
Sorry, Jim, bring it on over.

This is Marilyn Reed, I wanta talk to you...  Is this a machine?  I don't
talk to machines!  [Click]
                -- "The Rockford Files"
Today's thrilling story has been brought to you by Mushies, the great new
cereal that gets soggy even without milk or cream.  Join us soon for more
spectacular adventure starring...  Tippy, the Wonder Dog!
                -- Bob & Ray
VII. Certain bodies can pass through solid walls painted to resemble tunnel
      entrances; others cannot.
        This trompe l'oeil inconsistency has baffled generations, but at least
        it is known that whoever paints an entrance on a wall's surface to
        trick an opponent will be unable to pursue him into this theoretical
        space.  The painter is flattened against the wall when he attempts to
        follow into the painting.  This is ultimately a problem of art, not
        of science.
VIII. Any violent rearrangement of feline matter is impermanent.
        Cartoon cats possess even more deaths than the traditional nine lives
        might comfortably afford.  They can be decimated, spliced, splayed,
        accordion-pleated, spindled, or disassembled, but they cannot be
        destroyed.  After a few moments of blinking self pity, they reinflate,
        elongate, snap back, or solidify.
  IX. For every vengeance there is an equal and opposite revengeance.
        This is the one law of animated cartoon motion that also applies to
        the physical world at large.  For that reason, we need the relief of
        watching it happen to a duck instead.
   X. Everything falls faster than an anvil.
        Examples too numerous to mention from the Roadrunner cartoons.
                -- Esquire, "O'Donnell's Laws of Cartoon Motion", June 1980
We're constantly being bombarded by insulting and humiliating music, which
people are making for you the way they make those Wonder Bread products.
Just as food can be bad for your system, music can be bad for your spirtual
and emotional feelings.  It might taste good or clever, but in the long run,
it's not going to do anything for you.
                -- Bob Dylan, "LA Times", September 5, 1984
        "Well, it's garish, ugly, and derelicts have used it for a toilet.
The rides are dilapidated to the point of being lethal, and could easily
maim or kill innocent little children."
        "Oh, so you don't like it?"
        "Don't like it?  I'm CRAZY for it."
                -- The Killing Joke
What a bonanza!  An unknown beginner to be directed by Lubitsch, in a script
by Wilder and Brackett, and to play with Paramount's two superstars, Gary
Cooper and Claudette Colbert, and to be beaten up by both of them!
                -- David Niven, "Bring On the Empty Horses"
        "What are you watching?"
        "I don't know."
        "Well, what's happening?"
        "I'm not sure...  I think the guy in the hat did something terrible."
        "Why are you watching it?"
        "You're so analytical.  Sometimes you just have to let art flow
over you."
                -- The Big Chill
What no spouse of a writer can ever understand is that a writer is working
when he's staring out the window.
Whistler's mother is off her rocker.
Who's on first?
Who's scruffy-looking?
                -- Han Solo
Yeah, that's me, Tracer Bullet.  I've got eight slugs in me.  One's lead,
the rest bourbon.  The drink packs a wallop, and I pack a revolver.  I'm
a private eye.
                -- "Calvin & Hobbes"
Year  Name                                James Bond        Book
----  --------------------------------        --------------        ----
50's  James Bond TV Series                Barry Nelson
1962  Dr. No                                Sean Connery        1958
1963  From Russia With Love                Sean Connery        1957
1964  Goldfinger                        Sean Connery        1959
1965  Thunderball                        Sean Connery        1961
1967* Casino Royale                        David Niven        1954
1967  You Only Live Twice                Sean Connery        1964
1969  On Her Majesty's Secret Service        George Lazenby        1963
1971  Diamonds Are Forever                Sean Connery        1956
1973  Live And Let Die                        Roger Moore        1955
1974  The Man With The Golden Gun        Roger Moore        1965
1977  The Spy Who Loved Me                Roger Moore        1962 (novelette)
1979  Moonraker                                Roger Moore        1955
1981  For Your Eyes Only                Roger Moore        1960 (novelette)
1983  Octopussy                                Roger Moore        1965
1983* Never Say Never Again                Sean Connery
1985  A View To A Kill                        Roger Moore        1960 (novelette)
1987  The Living Daylights                Timothy Dalton        1965 (novelette)
        * -- Not a Broccoli production.
Zero Mostel: That's it baby!  When you got it, flaunt it!  Flaunt it!
                -- Mel Brooks, "The Producers"
Any member introducing a dog into the Society's premises shall be
liable to a fine of one pound.  Any animal leading a blind person shall
be deemed to be a cat.
                -- Rule 46, Oxford Union Society, London
Chihuahuas drive me crazy.  I can't stand anything that shivers when it's warm.
Did you ever walk into a room and forget why you walked in?  I think
that's how dogs spend their lives.
                -- Sue Murphy
Everyone *knows* cats are on a higher level of existence.  These silly humans
are just to big-headed to admit their inferiority.
        Just think what a nicer world this would be if it were controlled by
cats.
        You wouldn't see cats having waste disposal problems.
        They're neat.
        They don't have sexual hangups.  A cat gets horny, it does something
about it.
        They keep reasonable hours.  You *never* see a cat up before noon.
        They know how to relax.  Ever heard of a cat with an ulcer?  
        What are the chances of a cat starting a nuclear war?  Pretty neglible.
It's not that they can't, they just know that there are much better things to
do with ones time.  Like lie in the sun and sleep.  Or go exploring the world.
I love dogs, but I hate Chihuahuas.  A Chihuahua isn't a dog.  It's a rat
with a thyroid problem.
If anyone has seen my dog, please contact me at x2883 as soon as possible.
We're offering a substantial reward.  He's a sable collie, with three legs,
blind in his left eye, is missing part of his right ear and the tip of his
tail.  He's been recently fixed.  Answers to "Lucky".
If you are a police dog, where's your badge?
                -- Question James Thurber used to drive his German Shepherd
                   crazy.
It's no use crying over spilt milk -- it only makes it salty for the cat.
Sometimes when I get up in the morning, I feel very peculiar.  I feel
like I've just got to bite a cat!  I feel like if I don't bite a cat
before sundown, I'll go crazy!  But then I just take a deep breath and
forget about it.  That's what is known as real maturity.
                -- Snoopy
Speaking of purchasing a dog, never buy a watchdog that's on sale.
After all, everyone knows a bargain dog never bites!
There's no use in having a dog and doing your own barking.
With a rubber duck, one's never alone.
                -- "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
_/I\_____________o______________o___/I\     l  * /    /_/ *   __  '     .* l
I"""_____________l______________l___"""I\   l      *//      _l__l_   . *.  l
[__][__][(******)__][__](******)[__][] \l  l-\ ---//---*----(oo)----------l
[][__][__(******)][__][_(******)_][__] l   l  \\ // ____ >-(    )-<    /  l
[__][__][_l    l[__][__][l    l][__][] l   l \\)) ._****_.(......) .@@@:::l
[][__][__]l   .l_][__][__]   .l__][__] l   l   ll  _(o_o)_        (@*_*@  l
[__][__][/   <_)[__][__]/   <_)][__][] l   l   ll (  / \  )     /   / / ) l
[][__][ /..,/][__][__][/..,/_][__][__] l   l  / \\  _\  \_   /     _\_\   l
[__][__(__/][__][__][_(__/_][__][__][] l   l______________________________l
[__][__]] l     ,  , .      [__][__][] l
[][__][_] l   . i. '/ ,     [][__][__] l        /\**/\       season's
[__][__]] l  O .\ / /, O    [__][__][] l       ( o_o  )_)       greetings
_[][__][_] l__l======='=l____[][__][__] l_______,(u  u  ,),__________________
[__][__]]/  /l\-------/l\   [__][__][]/       {}{}{}{}{}{}<R>

In Ellen's house it is warm and toasty while fuzzies play in the snow outside.
      _
  _  / \                           o
/ \ | |                       o           o                 o
| | | |   _                        o    o                       o       o
| \_| |  / \                      o                            o         o
  \__  |  | |                  o                              o
     | |  | |                 ______          ~~~~                    _____
     | |__/ |               / ___--\\ ~~~                 __/_____\__
     |        ___/              / \--\\  \\   \ ___        <__  x x  __\
     | |             / /\\  \\             ))         \           (  "         )
     | |     -------(---->>(@)--(@)-------\----------< >-----------
     | |   //            | | //__________  /           \        ____)        (___          \\
     | |  //          __|_|         ( --------- )            //// ______ /////\           \\
         //          |    (  \ ______  /           <<<< <>-----<<<<< /            \\
        //         (     )                      / /          \` \__     \\
       //-------------------------------------------------------------\\

Every now and then, when your life gets complicated and the weasels start
closing in, the only cure is to load up on heinous chemicals and then
drive like a bastard from Hollywood to Las Vegas ... with the music at
top volume and at least a pint of ether.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson, "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas"
"...and scantily clad females, of course.  Who cares if it's below zero
outside"
(By Linus Torvalds)
> : Any porters out there should feel happier knowing that DEC is shipping
> : me an AlphaPC that I intend to try getting linux running on: this will
> : definitely help flush out some of the most flagrant unportable stuff.
> : The Alpha is much more different from the i386 than the 68k stuff is, so
> : it's likely to get most of the stuff fixed.
>
> It's posts like this that almost convince us non-believers that there
> really is a god.
(A follow-up by alovell@kerberos.demon.co.uk, Anthony Lovell, to Linus's
remarks about porting)
DOS: n., A small annoying boot virus that causes random spontaneous system
     crashes, usually just before saving a massive project.  Easily cured by
     UNIX.  See also MS-DOS, IBM-DOS, DR-DOS.
(from David Vicker's .plan)
>Ever heard of .cshrc?
That's a city in Bosnia.  Right?
(Discussion in comp.os.linux.misc on the intuitiveness of commands.)
"How should I know if it works?  That's what beta testers are for.  I only
coded it."
(Attributed to Linus Torvalds, somewhere in a posting)
Feel free to contact me (flames about my english and the useless of this
driver will be redirected to /dev/null, oh no, it's full...).
(Michael Beck, describing the PC-speaker sound device)
"I would rather spend 10 hours reading someone else's source code than
10 minutes listening to Musak waiting for technical support which isn't."
(By Dr. Greg Wettstein, Roger Maris Cancer Center)
"I'm an idiot.. At least this one [bug] took about 5 minutes to find.."
(Linus Torvalds in response to a bug report.)

> I'm an idiot.. At least this [bug] took about 5 minutes to find..
Disquieting ...
(Gonzalo Tornaria in response to Linus Torvalds's mailing about a kernel bug.)

> I'm an idiot.. At least this [bug] took about 5 minutes to find..
We need to find some new terms to describe the rest of us mere mortals
then.
(Craig Schlenter in response to Linus Torvalds's mailing about a kernel bug.)

> I'm an idiot.. At least this [bug] took about 5 minutes to find..
Surely, Linus is talking about the kind of idiocy that others aspire to :-).
(Bruce Perens in response to Linus Torvalds's mailing about a kernel bug.)
Microsoft Corp., concerned by the growing popularity of the free 32-bit
operating system for Intel systems, Linux, has employed a number of top
programmers from the underground world of virus development. Bill Gates stated
yesterday: "World domination, fast -- it's either us or Linus". Mr. Torvalds
was unavailable for comment ...
(rjm@swift.eng.ox.ac.uk (Robert Manners), in comp.os.linux.setup)
"It's God.  No, not Richard Stallman, or Linus Torvalds, but God."
(By Matt Welsh)
"...[Linux's] capacity to talk via any medium except smoke signals."
(By Dr. Greg Wettstein, Roger Maris Cancer Center)
> No manual is ever necessary.
May I politely interject here: BULLSHIT.  That's the biggest Apple lie of all!
(Discussion in comp.os.linux.misc on the intuitiveness of interfaces.)
Not me, guy. I read the Bash man page each day like a Jehovah's Witness reads
the Bible. No wait, the Bash man page IS the bible. Excuse me...
(More on confusing aliases, taken from comp.os.linux.misc)
Once upon a time there was a DOS user who saw Unix, and saw that it was
good. After typing cp on his DOS machine at home, he downloaded GNU's
unix tools ported to DOS and installed them. He rm'd, cp'd, and mv'd
happily for many days, and upon finding elvis, he vi'd and was happy. After
a long day at work (on a Unix box) he came home, started editing a file,
and couldn't figure out why he couldn't suspend vi (w/ ctrl-z) to do
a compile.
(By ewt@tipper.oit.unc.edu (Erik Troan)
> > Other than the fact Linux has a cool name, could someone explain why I
> > should use Linux over BSD?
>
> No.  That's it.  The cool name, that is.  We worked very hard on
> creating a name that would appeal to the majority of people, and it
> certainly paid off: thousands of people are using linux just to be able
> to say "OS/2? Hah.  I've got Linux.  What a cool name".  386BSD made the
> mistake of putting a lot of numbers and weird abbreviations into the
> name, and is scaring away a lot of people just because it sounds too
> technical.
(Linus Torvalds' follow-up to a question about Linux)
There are no threads in a.b.p.erotica,  so there's no  gain in using a
threaded news reader.
(Unknown source)
quit   When the quit statement is read, the  bc  processor
       is  terminated, regardless of where the quit state-
       ment is found.  For example, "if  (0  ==  1)  quit"
       will cause bc to terminate.
(Seen in the manpage for "bc". Note the "if" statement's logic)
"sic transit discus mundi"
(From the System Administrator's Guide, by Lars Wirzenius)
Sigh.  I like to think it's just the Linux people who want to be on
the "leading edge" so bad they walk right off the precipice.
(Craig E. Groeschel)
> The day people think linux would be better served by somebody else (FSF
> being the natural alternative), I'll "abdicate".  I don't think that
> it's something people have to worry about right now - I don't see it
> happening in the near future.  I enjoy doing linux, even though it does
> mean some work, and I haven't gotten any complaints (some almost timid
> reminders about a patch I have forgotten or ignored, but nothing
> negative so far).
>
> Don't take the above to mean that I'll stop the day somebody complains:
> I'm thick-skinned (Lasu, who is reading this over my shoulder commented
> that "thick-HEADED is closer to the truth") enough to take some abuse.
> If I weren't, I'd have stopped developing linux the day ast ridiculed me
> on c.o.minix.  What I mean is just that while linux has been my baby so
> far, I don't want to stand in the way if people want to make something
> better of it (*).
>
>                 Linus
>
> (*) Hey, maybe I could apply for a saint-hood from the Pope.  Does
> somebody know what his email-address is? I'm so nice it makes you puke.
(Taken from Linus's reply to someone worried about the future of Linux)
The nice thing about Windows is - It does not just crash, it displays a
dialog box and lets you press 'OK' first.
(Arno Schaefer's .sig)
The only "intuitive" interface is the nipple. After that, it's all learned.
(Bruce Ediger, bediger@teal.csn.org, in comp.os.linux.misc, on X interfaces.)
"Waving away a cloud of smoke, I look up, and am blinded by a bright, white
light. It's God. No, not Richard Stallman, or Linus Torvalds, but God. In
a booming voice, He says: "THIS IS A SIGN. USE LINUX, THE FREE UNIX SYSTEM
FOR THE 386."
(Matt Welsh)
We are Pentium of Borg. Division is futile. You will be approximated.
(seen in someone's .signature)
We use Linux for all our mission-critical applications. Having the source code
means that we are not held hostage by anyone's support department.
(Russell Nelson, President of Crynwr Software)
What's this script do?
    unzip ; touch ; finger ; mount ; gasp ; yes ; umount ; sleep
Hint for the answer: not everything is computer-oriented. Sometimes you're
in a sleeping bag, camping out.
(Contributed by Frans van der Zande.)
Your job is being a professor and researcher: That's one hell of a good excuse
for some of the brain-damages of minix.
(Linus Torvalds to Andrew Tanenbaum)
It works the way the Wang did, what's the problem
Change in Earth's rotational speed
That's a great computer you have there; have you considered how it would work as a BSD machine?
backup tape overwritten with copy of system manager's favourite CD
UPS interrupted the server's power
your keyboard's space bar is generating spurious keycodes.
because Bill Gates is a Jehovah's witness and so nothing can work on St. Swithin's day.
It's not plugged in.
Flat tire on station wagon with tapes.  ("Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurling down the highway" Andrew S. Tanenbaum)
SCSI's too wide.
We didn't pay the Internet bill and it's been cut off.
The mainframe needs to rest.  It's getting old, you know.
I'm not sure.  Try calling the Internet's head office -- it's in the book.
It's those computer people in X {city of world}.  They keep stuffing things up.
That's easy to fix, but I can't be bothered.
Someone's tie is caught in the printer, and if anything else gets printed, he'll be in it too.
It's stuck in the Web.
U.S. Postal Service
Traceroute says that there is a routing problem in the backbone.  It's not our problem.
High altitude condensation from U.S.A.F prototype aircraft has contaminated the primary subnet mask. Turn off your computer for 9 days to avoid damaging it.
Hard drive sleeping. Let it wake up on it's own...
Your/our computer(s) had suffered a memory leak, and we are waiting for them to be topped up.
I'd love to help you -- it's just that the Boss won't let me near the computer.
Its the InterNIC's fault.
Robotic tape changer mistook operator's tie for a backup tape.
Your processor has taken a ride to Heaven's Gate on the UFO behind Hale-Bopp's comet.
t's an ID-10-T error
Your computer's union contract is set to expire at midnight.
It's union rules. There's nothing we can do about it. Sorry.
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According to Microsoft, it's by design
A hundred years from now it is very likely that [of Twain's works] "The
Jumping Frog" alone will be remembered.
                -- Harry Thurston Peck (Editor of "The Bookman"), January 1901.
All say, "How hard it is that we have to die"--a strange complaint to come from
the mouths of people who have had to live.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
April 1

This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three
hundred and sixty-four.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
As to the Adjective: when in doubt, strike it out.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Awash with unfocused desire, Everett twisted the lobe of his one remaining
ear and felt the presence of somebody else behind him, which caused terror
to push through his nervous system like a flash flood roaring down the
mid-fork of the Feather River before the completion of the Oroville Dam
in 1959.
                -- Grand Panjandrum's Special Award, 1984 Bulwer-Lytton
                   bad fiction contest.
Behold, the fool saith, "Put not all thine eggs in the one basket"--which is
but a manner of saying, "Scatter your money and your attention;" but the wise
man saith, "Put all your eggs in the one basket and--WATCH THAT BASKET."
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
By trying we can easily learn to endure adversity.  Another man's, I mean.
                -- Mark Twain
Consider well the proportions of things.  It is better to be a young June-bug
than an old bird of paradise.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear--not absence of fear.  Except a
creature be part coward it is not a compliment to say it is brave; it is merely
a loose misapplication of the word.  Consider the flea!--incomparably the
bravest of all the creatures of God, if ignorance of fear were courage.
Whether you are asleep or awake he will attack you, caring nothing for the fact
that in bulk and strength you are to him as are the massed armies of the earth
to a sucking child; he lives both day and night and all days and nights in the
very lap of peril and the immediate presence of death, and yet is no more
afraid than is the man who walks the streets of a city that was threatened by
an earthquake ten centuries before.  When we speak of Clive, Nelson, and Putnam
as men who "didn't know what fear was," we ought always to add the flea--and
put him at the head of the procession.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
English literature's performing flea.
                -- Sean O'Casey on P.G. Wodehouse
Even the clearest and most perfect circumstantial evidence is likely to be at
fault, after all, and therefore ought to be received with great caution.  Take
the case of any pencil, sharpened by any woman; if you have witnesses, you will
find she did it with a knife; but if you take simply the aspect of the pencil,
you will say that she did it with her teeth.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
F.S. Fitzgerald to Hemingway:
        "Ernest, the rich are different from us."
Hemingway:
        "Yes.  They have more money."
Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.
                -- "Mark Twain, Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
For a light heart lives long.
                -- Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost"
Gratitude and treachery are merely the two extremities of the same procession.
You have seen all of it that is worth staying for when the band and the gaudy
officials have gone by.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Habit is habit, and not to be flung out of the window by any man, but coaxed
down-stairs a step at a time.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar
He draweth out the thread of his verbosity finer than the staple of his
argument.
                -- William Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost"
I think we are in Rats' Alley where the dead men lost their bones.
                -- T.S. Eliot
"I wonder", he said to himself, "what's in a book while it's closed.  Oh, I
know it's full of letters printed on paper, but all the same, something must
be happening, because as soon as I open it, there's a whole story with people
I don't know yet and all kinds of adventures and battles."
                -- Bastian B. Bux
If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you.
This is the principal difference between a dog and a man.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
It is easy to find fault, if one has that disposition.  There was once a man
who, not being able to find any other fault with his coal, complained that
there were too many prehistoric toads in it.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
It is often the case that the man who can't tell a lie thinks he is the best
judge of one.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
It were not best that we should all think alike; it is difference of opinion
that makes horse-races.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Let me take you a button-hole lower.
                -- William Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost"
Let us endeavor so to live that when we come to die even the undertaker will be
sorry.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Lord, what fools these mortals be!
                -- William Shakespeare, "A Midsummer-Night's Dream"
Many enraged psychiatrists are inciting a weary butcher.  The butcher is
weary and tired because he has cut meat and steak and lamb for hours and
weeks.  He does not desire to chant about anything with raving psychiatrists,
but he sings about his gingivectomist, he dreams about a single cosmologist,
he thinks about his dog.  The dog is named Herbert.
                -- Racter, "The Policeman's Beard is Half-Constructed"
Mind!  I don't mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what there is
particularly dead about a door-nail.  I might have been inclined, myself,
to regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of ironmongery in the trade.
But the wisdom of our ancestors is in the simile; and my unhallowed hands
shall not disturb it, or the Country's done for.  You will therefore permit
me to repeat, emphatically, that Marley was as dead as a door-nail.
                -- Charles Dickens, "A Christmas Carol"
Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits.
                -- Mark Twain
Nothing so needs reforming as other people's habits.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
O, it is excellent
To have a giant's strength; but it is tyrannous
To use it like a giant.
                -- Shakespeare, "Measure for Measure", II, 2
October 12, the Discovery.

It was wonderful to find America, but it would have been more wonderful to miss
it.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
October.

This is one of the peculiarly dangerous months to speculate in stocks in.

The others are July, January, September, April, November, May, March, June,
December, August, and February.

                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
One of the most striking differences between a cat and a lie is that a cat has
only nine lives.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Remark of Dr. Baldwin's concerning upstarts: We don't care to eat toadstools
that think they are truffles.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Sheriff Chameleotoptor sighed with an air of weary sadness, and then
turned to Doppelgutt and said 'The Senator must really have been on a
bender this time -- he left a party in Cleveland, Ohio, at 11:30 last
night, and they found his car this morning in the smokestack of a British
aircraft carrier in the Formosa Straits.'
                -- Grand Panjandrum's Special Award, 1985 Bulwer-Lytton
                   bad fiction contest.
Something's rotten in the state of Denmark.
                -- Shakespeare
"Speak, thou vast and venerable head," muttered Ahab, "which, though
ungarnished with a beard, yet here and there lookest hoary with mosses; speak,
mighty head, and tell us the secret thing that is in thee.  Of all divers,
thou has dived the deepest.  That head upon which the upper sun now gleams has
moved amid the world's foundations.  Where unrecorded names and navies rust,
and untold hopes and anchors rot; where in her murderous hold this frigate
earth is ballasted with bones of millions of the drowned; there, in that awful
water-land, there was thy most familiar home.  Thou hast been where bell or
diver never went; has slept by many a sailer's side, where sleepless mothers
would give their lives to lay them down.  Thou saw'st the locked lovers when
leaping from their flaming ship; heart to heart they sank beneath the exulting
wave; true to each other, when heaven seemed false to them.  Thou saw'st the
murdered mate when tossed by pirates from the midnight deck; for hours he fell
into the deeper midnight of the insatiate maw; and his murderers still sailed
on unharmed -- while swift lightnings shivered the neighboring ship that would
have borne a righteous husband to outstretched, longing arms.  O head! thou has
seen enough to split the planets and make an infidel of Abraham, and not one
syllable is thine!"
                -- H. Melville, "Moby Dick"
Stop!  There was first a game of blindman's buff.  Of course there was.
And I no more believe Topper was really blind than I believe he had eyes
in his boots.  My opinion is, that it was a done thing between him and
Scrooge's nephew; and that the Ghost of Christmas Present knew it.  The
way he went after that plump sister in the lace tucker, was an outrage
on the credulity of human nature.
Tell the truth or trump--but get the trick.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.
                -- Wm. Shakespeare, "Henry VI", Part IV
The holy passion of Friendship is of so sweet and steady and loyal and
enduring a nature that it will last through a whole lifetime, if not asked to
lend money.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
The Least Successful Collector
        Betsy Baker played a central role in the history of collecting.  She
was employed as a servant in the house of John Warburton (1682-1759) who had
amassed a fine collection of 58 first edition plays, including most of the
works of Shakespeare.
        One day Warburton returned home to find 55 of them charred beyond
legibility.  Betsy had either burned them or used them as pie bottoms.  The
remaining three folios are now in the British Museum.
        The only comparable literary figure was the maid who in 1835 burned
the manuscript of the first volume of Thomas Carlyle's "The Hisory of the
French Revolution", thinking it was wastepaper.
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
The lunatic, the lover, and the poet,
Are of imagination all compact...
                -- Wm. Shakespeare, "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
The naked truth of it is, I have no shirt.
                -- William Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost"
        "...The name of the song is called 'Haddocks' Eyes'!"
        "Oh, that's the name of the song, is it?" Alice said, trying to
feel interested.
        "No, you don't understand," the Knight said, looking a little
vexed.  "That's what the name is called.  The name really is, 'The Aged
Aged Man.'"
        "Then I ought to have said "That's what the song is called'?"
Alice corrected herself.
        "No, you oughtn't: that's quite another thing!  The song is
called 'Ways and Means':  but that's only what it is called you know!"
        "Well, what is the song then?" said Alice, who was by this
time completely bewildered.
        "I was coming to that," the Knight said.  "The song really is
"A-sitting on a Gate": and the tune's my own invention."
                --Lewis Carroll, "Through the Looking Glass"
The notes blatted skyward as they rose over the Canada geese, feathered
rumps mooning the day, webbed appendages frantically pedaling unseen
bicycles in their search for sustenance, driven by cruel Nature's maxim,
'Ya wanna eat, ya gotta work,' and at last I knew Pittsburgh.
                -- Winning sentence, 1987 Bulwer-Lytton bad fiction contest.
        The Priest's grey nimbus in a niche where he dressed discreetly.
I will not sleep here tonight. Home also I cannot go.
        A voice, sweetened and sustained, called to him from the sea.
Turning the curve he waved his hand.  A sleek brown head, a seal's, far
out on the water, round.  Usurper.
                -- James Joyce, "Ulysses"
The true Southern watermelon is a boon apart, and not to be mentioned with
commoner things.  It is chief of the world's luxuries, king by the grace of God
over all the fruits of the earth.  When one has tasted it, he knows what the
angels eat.  It was not a Southern watermelon that Eve took; we know it because
she repented.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
There are three infallible ways of pleasing an author, and the three form a
rising scale of compliment: 1, to tell him you have read one of his books; 2,
to tell him you have read all of his books; 3, to ask him to let you read the
manuscript of his forthcoming book.  No. 1 admits you to his respect; No. 2
admits you to his admiration; No. 3 carries you clear into his heart.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
There is no character, howsoever good and fine, but it can be destroyed by
ridicule, howsoever poor and witless.  Observe the ass, for instance: his
character is about perfect, he is the choicest spirit among all the humbler
animals, yet see what ridicule has brought him to.  Instead of feeling
complimented when we are called an ass, we are left in doubt.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
There's small choice in rotten apples.
                -- William Shakespeare, "The Taming of the Shrew"
They have been at a great feast of languages, and stolen the scraps.
                -- William Shakespeare, "Love's Labour's Lost"
This is the first age that's paid much attention to the future, which is a
little ironic since we may not have one.
                -- Arthur Clarke
Training is everything.  The peach was once a bitter almond; cauliflower is
nothing but cabbage with a college education.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Wagner's music is better than it sounds.
                -- Mark Twain
We know all about the habits of the ant, we know all about the habits of the
bee, but we know nothing at all about the habits of the oyster.  It seems
almost certain that we have been choosing the wrong time for studying the
oyster.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
We were young and our happiness dazzled us with its strength.  But there was
also a terrible betrayal that lay within me like a Merle Haggard song at a
French restaurant. [...]
        I could not tell the girl about the woman of the tollway, of her milk
white BMW and her Jordache smile.  There had been a fight.  I had punched her
boyfriend, who fought the mechanical bulls.  Everyone told him, "You ride the
bull, senor.  You do not fight it."  But he was lean and tough like a bad
rib-eye and he fought the bull.  And then he fought me.  And when we finished
there were no winners, just men doing what men must do. [...]
        "Stop the car," the girl said.
        There was a look of terrible sadness in her eyes.  She knew about the
woman of the tollway.  I knew not how.  I started to speak, but she raised an
arm and spoke with a quiet and peace I will never forget.
        "I do not ask for whom's the tollway belle," she said, "the tollway
belle's for thee."
        The next morning our youth was a memory, and our happiness was a lie.
Life is like a bad margarita with good tequila, I thought as I poured whiskey
onto my granola and faced a new day.
                -- Peter Applebome, International Imitation Hemingway
                   Competition
Well, anyway, I was reading this James Bond book, and right away I realized
that like most books, it had too many words.  The plot was the same one that
all James Bond books have: An evil person tries to blow up the world, but
James Bond kills him and his henchmen and makes love to several attractive
women.  There, that's it: 24 words.  But the guy who wrote the book took
*thousands* of words to say it.
        Or consider "The Brothers Karamazov", by the famous Russian alcoholic
Fyodor Dostoyevsky.  It's about these two brothers who kill their father.
Or maybe only one of them kills the father.  It's impossible to tell because
what they mostly do is talk for nearly a thousand pages.  If all Russians talk
as much as the Karamazovs did, I don't see how they found time to become a
major world power.
        I'm told that Dostoyevsky wrote "The Brothers Karamazov" to raise
the question of whether there is a God.  So why didn't he just come right
out and say: "Is there a God? It sure beats the heck out of me."
        Other famous works could easily have been summarized in a few words:

* "Moby Dick" -- Don't mess around with large whales because they symbolize
  nature and will kill you.
* "A Tale of Two Cities" -- French people are crazy.
                -- Dave Barry
What no spouse of a writer can ever understand is that a writer is working
when he's staring out the window.
When angry, count four; when very angry, swear.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
When I reflect upon the number of disagreeable people who I know who have gone
to a better world, I am moved to lead a different life.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
When one burns one's bridges, what a very nice fire it makes.
                -- Dylan Thomas
Whenever the literary German dives into a sentence, that is the last
you are going to see of him until he emerges on the other side of his
Atlantic with his verb in his mouth.
                -- Mark Twain "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court"
Whoever has lived long enough to find out what life is, knows how deep a debt
of gratitude we owe to Adam, the first great benefactor of our race.  He
brought death into the world.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Why is it that we rejoice at a birth and grieve at a funeral?  It is because we
are not the person involved.
                -- Mark Twain, "Pudd'nhead Wilson's Calendar"
Writing is turning one's worst moments into money.
                -- J.P. Donleavy
You see, I consider that a man's brain originally is like a little empty
attic, and you have to stock it with such furniture as you choose.  A fool
takes in all the lumber of every sort he comes across, so that the knowledge
which might be useful to him gets crowded out, or at best is jumbled up with
a lot of other things, so that he has difficulty in laying his hands upon it.
Now the skilful workman is very careful indeed as to what he takes into his
brain-attic.  He will have nothing but the tools which may help him in doing
his work, but of these he has a large assortment, and all in the most perfect
order.  It is a mistake to think that that little room has elastic walls and
can distend to any extent.  Depend upon it there comes a time when for every
addition of knowledge you forget something that you knew before.  It is of
the highest importance, therefore, not to have useless facts elbowing out
the useful ones.
                -- Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, "A Study in Scarlet"
Zounds!  I was never so bethumped with words
since I first called my brother's father dad.
                -- William Shakespeare, "Kind John"
A morgue is a morgue is a morgue.  They can paint the walls with aggressively
cheerful primary colors and splashy bold graphics, but it's still a holding
place for the dead until they can be parted out to organ banks.  Not that I
would have cared normally but my viewpoint was skewed.  The relentless
pleasance of the room I sat in seemed only grotesque.
                -- Pat Cadigan, "Mindplayers"
"What's this?  Trix?  Aunt!  Trix?  You?  You're after the prize!  What
is it?"  He picked up the box and studied the back.  "A glow-in-the-dark
squid!  Have you got it out of there yet?"  He tilted the box, angling the
little colored balls of cereal so as to see the bottom, and nearly spilling
them onto the table top.  "Here it is!"  He hauled out a little cream-colored,
glitter-sprinkled squid, three-inches long and made out of rubbery plastic.
                -- James P. Blaylock, "The Last Coin"
"Good afternoon, madam.  How may I help you?"

"Good afternoon.  I'd like a FrintArms HandCannon, please."

"A--?  Oh, now, that's an awfully big gun for such a lovely lady.  I
mean, not everybody thinks ladies should carry guns at all, though I
say they have a right to.  But I think... I might... Let's have a look
down here.  I might have just the thing for you.  Yes, here we are!
Look at that, isn't it neat?  Now that is a FrintArms product as well,
but it's what's called a laser -- a light-pistol some people call
them.  Very small, as you see; fits easily into a pocket or bag; won't
spoil the line of a jacket; and you won't feel you're lugging half a
tonne of iron around with you.  We do a range of matching accessories,
including -- if I may say so -- a rather saucy garter holster.  Wish I
got to do the fitting for that!  Ha -- just my little joke.  And
there's *even*... here we are -- this special presentation pack: gun,
charged battery, charging unit, beautiful glider-hide shoulder holster
with adjustable fitting and contrast stitching, and a discount on your
next battery.  Full instructions, of course, and a voucher for free
lessons at your local gun club or range.  Or there's the *special*
presentation pack; it has all the other one's got but with *two*
charged batteries and a night-sight, too.  Here, feel that -- don't
worry, it's a dummy battery -- isn't it neat?  Feel how light it is?
Smooth, see?  No bits to stick out and catch on your clothes, *and*
beautifully balanced.  And of course the beauty of a laser is, there's
no recoil.  Because it's shooting light, you see?  Beautiful gun,
beautiful gun; my wife has one.  Really.  That's not a line, she
really has.  Now, I can do you that one -- with a battery and a free
charge -- for ninety-five; or the presentation pack on a special
offer for one-nineteen; or this, the special presentation pack, for
one-forty-nine."

"I'll take the special."

"Sound choice, madam, *sound* choice.  Now, do--?"

"And a HandCannon, with the eighty-mill silencer, five GP clips, three
six-five AP/wire-fl'echettes clips, two bipropellant HE clips, and a
Special Projectile Pack if you have one -- the one with the embedding
rounds, not the signalers.  I assume the night-sight on this toy is
compatible?"

"Aah... yes,  And how does madam wish to pay?"

She slapped her credit card on the counter.  "Eventually."

          -- Iain M. Banks, "Against a Dark Background"
A biologist, a statistician, a mathematician and a computer scientist are on
a photo-safari in Africa.  As they're driving along the savannah in their
jeep, they stop and scout the horizon with their binoculars.

The biologist: "Look!  A herd of zebras!  And there's a white zebra!
        Fantastic!  We'll be famous!"
The statistician: "Hey, calm down, it's not significant.  We only know
        there's one white zebra."
The mathematician: "Actually, we only know there exists a zebra, which is
        white on one side."
The computer scientist : "Oh, no!  A special case!"
A certain monk had a habit of pestering the Grand Tortue (the only one who
had ever reached the Enlightenment 'Yond Enlightenment), by asking whether
various objects had Buddha-nature or not.  To such a question Tortue
invariably sat silent.  The monk had already asked about a bean, a lake,
and a moonlit night.  One day he brought to Tortue a piece of string, and
asked the same question.  In reply, the Grand Tortue grasped the loop
between his feet and, with a few simple manipulations, created a complex
string which he proferred wordlessly to the monk.  At that moment, the monk
was enlightened.

From then on, the monk did not bother Tortue.  Instead, he made string after
string by Tortue's method; and he passed the method on to his own disciples,
who passed it on to theirs.
A computer salesman visits a company president for the purpose of selling
the president one of the latest talking computers.
Salesman:        "This machine knows everything. I can ask it any question
                and it'll give the correct answer.  Computer, what is the
                speed of light?"
Computer:        186,282 miles per second.
Salesman:        "Who was the first president of the United States?"
Computer:        George Washington.
President:        "I'm still not convinced. Let me ask a question.
                Where is my father?"
Computer:        Your father is fishing in Georgia.
President:        "Hah!! The computer is wrong. My father died over twenty
                years ago!"
Computer:        Your mother's husband died 22 years ago. Your father just
                landed a twelve pound bass.
        A doctor, an architect, and a computer scientist were arguing about
whose profession was the oldest.  In the course of their arguments, they
got all the way back to the Garden of Eden, whereupon the doctor said, "The
medical profession is clearly the oldest, because Eve was made from Adam's
rib, as the story goes, and that was a simply incredible surgical feat."
        The architect did not agree.  He said, "But if you look at the Garden
itself, in the beginning there was chaos and void, and out of that the Garden
and the world were created.  So God must have been an architect."
        The computer scientist, who'd listened carefully to all of this, then
commented, "Yes, but where do you think the chaos came from?"
        A manager was about to be fired, but a programmer who worked for him
invented a new program that became popular and sold well.  As a result, the
manager retained his job.
        The manager tried to give the programmer a bonus, but the programmer
refused it, saying, "I wrote the program because I though it was an interesting
concept, and thus I expect no reward."
        The manager, upon hearing this, remarked, "This programmer, though he
holds a position of small esteem, understands well the proper duty of an
employee.  Lets promote him to the exalted position of management consultant!"
        But when told this, the programmer once more refused, saying, "I exist
so that I can program.  If I were promoted, I would do nothing but waste
everyone's time.  Can I go now?  I have a program that I'm working on."
                -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
        A master programmer passed a novice programmer one day.  The master
noted the novice's preoccupation with a hand-held computer game.  "Excuse me",
he said, "may I examine it?"
        The novice bolted to attention and handed the device to the master.
"I see that the device claims to have three levels of play: Easy, Medium,
and Hard", said the master.  "Yet every such device has another level of play,
where the device seeks not to conquer the human, nor to be conquered by the
human."
        "Pray, great master," implored the novice, "how does one find this
mysterious setting?"
        The master dropped the device to the ground and crushed it under foot.
And suddenly the novice was enlightened.
                -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
        A novice of the temple once approached the Chief Priest with a
question.
        "Master, does Emacs have the Buddha nature?" the novice asked.
        The Chief Priest had been in the temple for many years and could be
relied upon to know these things.  He thought for several minutes before
replying.
        "I don't see why not.  It's got bloody well everything else."
        With that, the Chief Priest went to lunch.  The novice suddenly
achieved enlightenment, several years later.

Commentary:

His Master is kind,
Answering his FAQ quickly,
With thought and sarcasm.
        A sheet of paper crossed my desk the other day and as I read it,
realization of a basic truth came over me.  So simple!  So obvious we couldn't
see it.  John Knivlen, Chairman of Polamar Repeater Club, an amateur radio
group, had discovered how IC circuits work.  He says that smoke is the thing
that makes ICs work because every time you let the smoke out of an IC circuit,
it stops working.  He claims to have verified this with thorough testing.
        I was flabbergasted!  Of course!  Smoke makes all things electrical
work.  Remember the last time smoke escaped from your Lucas voltage regulator
Didn't it quit working?  I sat and smiled like an idiot as more of the truth
dawned.  It's the wiring harness that carries the smoke from one device to
another in your Mini, MG or Jag.  And when the harness springs a leak, it lets
the smoke out of everything at once, and then nothing works.  The starter motor
requires large quantities of smoke to operate properly, and that's why the wire
going to it is so large.
        Feeling very smug, I continued to expand my hypothesis.  Why are Lucas
electronics more likely to leak than say Bosch?  Hmmm...  Aha!!!  Lucas is
British, and all things British leak!  British convertible tops leak water,
British engines leak oil, British displacer units leak hydrostatic fluid, and
I might add Brititsh tires leak air, and the British defense unit leaks
secrets... so naturally British electronics leak smoke.
                -- Jack Banton, PCC Automotive Electrical School

        [Ummm ... IC circuits?  Integrated circuit circuits?]
A successful [software] tool is one that was used to do something
undreamed of by its author.
                -- S. C. Johnson
        After sifting through the overwritten remaining blocks of Luke's home
directory, Luke and PDP-1 sped away from /u/lars, across the surface of the
Winchester riding Luke's flying read/write head.  PDP-1 had Luke stop at the
edge of the cylinder overlooking /usr/spool/uucp.
        "Unix-to-Unix Copy Program;" said PDP-1.  "You will never find a more
wretched hive of bugs and flamers.  We must be cautious."
                -- DECWARS
===  ALL USERS PLEASE NOTE  ========================

Compiler optimizations have been made to macro expand LET into a WITHOUT-
INTERRUPTS special form so that it can PUSH things into a stack in the
LET-OPTIMIZATION area, SETQ the variables and then POP them back when it's
done.  Don't worry about this unless you use multiprocessing.
Note that LET *could* have been defined by:

        (LET ((LET '`(LET ((LET ',LET))
                        ,LET)))
        `(LET ((LET ',LET))
                ,LET))

This is believed to speed up execution by as much as a factor of 1.01 or
3.50 depending on whether you believe our friendly marketing representatives.
This code was written by a new programmer here (we snatched him away from
Itty Bitti Machines where he was writing COUGHBOL code) so to give him
confidence we trusted his vows of "it works pretty well" and installed it.
Almost anything derogatory you could say about today's software design
would be accurate.
                -- K.E. Iverson
... an anecdote from IBM's Yorktown Heights Research Center.  When a
programmer used his new computer terminal, all was fine when he was sitting
down, but he couldn't log in to the system when he was standing up.  That
behavior was 100 percent repeatable: he could always log in when sitting and
never when standing.

Most of us just sit back and marvel at such a story; how could that terminal
know whether the poor guy was sitting or standing?  Good debuggers, though,
know that there has to be a reason.  Electrical theories are the easiest to
hypothesize: was there a loose with under the carpet, or problems with static
electricity?  But electrical problems are rarely consistently reproducible.
An alert IBMer finally noticed that the problem was in the terminal's keyboard:
the tops of two keys were switched.  When the programmer was seated he was a
touch typist and the problem went unnoticed, but when he stood he was led
astray by hunting and pecking.
        -- "Programming Pearls" column, by Jon Bentley in CACM February 1985
As in Protestant Europe, by contrast, where sects divided endlessly into
smaller competing sects and no church dominated any other, all is different
in the fragmented world of IBM.  That realm is now a chaos of conflicting
norms and standards that not even IBM can hope to control.  You can buy a
computer that works like an IBM machine but contains nothing made or sold by
IBM itself.  Renegades from IBM constantly set up rival firms and establish
standards of their own.  When IBM recently abandoned some of its original
standards and decreed new ones, many of its rivals declared a puritan
allegiance to IBM's original faith, and denounced the company as a divisive
innovator.  Still, the IBM world is united by its distrust of icons and
imagery.  IBM's screens are designed for language, not pictures.  Graven
images may be tolerated by the luxurious cults, but the true IBM faith relies
on the austerity of the word.
                -- Edward Mendelson, "The New Republic", February 22, 1988
At about 2500 A.D., humankind discovers a computer problem that *must* be
solved.  The only difficulty is that the problem is NP complete and will
take thousands of years even with the latest optical biologic technology
available.  The best computer scientists sit down to think up some solution.
In great dismay, one of the C.S. people tells her husband about it.  There
is only one solution, he says.  Remember physics 103, Modern Physics, general
relativity and all.  She replies, "What does that have to do with solving
a computer problem?"
        "Remember the twin paradox?"
        After a few minutes, she says, "I could put the computer on a very
fast machine and the computer would have just a few minutes to calculate but
that is the exact opposite of what we want... Of course!  Leave the
computer here, and accelerate the earth!"
        The problem was so important that they did exactly that.  When
the earth came back, they were presented with the answer:

        IEH032 Error in JOB Control Card.
        Brian Kernighan has an automobile which he helped design.
Unlike most automobiles, it has neither speedometer, nor gas gauge, nor
any of the numerous idiot lights which plague the modern driver.
Rather, if the driver makes any mistake, a giant "?" lights up in the
center of the dashboard.  "The experienced driver", he says, "will
usually know what's wrong."
But this has taken us far afield from interface, which is not a bad
place to be, since I particularly want to move ahead to the kludge.
Why do people have so much trouble understanding the kludge?  What
is a kludge, after all, but not enough K's, not enough ROM's, not
enough RAM's, poor quality interface and too few bytes to go around?
Have I explained yet about the bytes?
By long-standing tradition, I take this opportunity to savage other
designers in the thin disguise of good, clean fun.
                -- P.J. Plauger, "Computer Language", 1988, April
                   Fool's column.
... C++ offers even more flexible control over the visibility of member
objects and member functions.  Specifically, members may be placed in the
public, private, or protected parts of a class.  Members declared in the
public parts are visible to all clients; members declared in the private
parts are fully encapsulated; and members declared in the protected parts
are visible only to the class itself and its subclasses.  C++ also supports
the notion of *_______friends*: cooperative classes that are permitted to see each
other's private parts.
                -- Grady Booch, "Object Oriented Design with Applications"
Calm down, it's *____only* ones and zeroes.
Congratulations!  You are the one-millionth user to log into our system.
If there's anything special we can do for you, anything at all, don't
hesitate to ask!
        Cosmotronic Software Unlimited Inc. does not warrant that the
functions contained in the program will meet your requirements or that
the operation of the program will be uninterrupted or error-free.
        However, Cosmotronic Software Unlimited Inc. warrants the
diskette(s) on which the program is furnished to be of black color and
square shape under normal use for a period of ninety (90) days from the
date of purchase.
        NOTE: IN NO EVENT WILL COSMOTRONIC SOFTWARE UNLIMITED OR ITS
DISTRIBUTORS AND THEIR DEALERS BE LIABLE TO YOU FOR ANY DAMAGES, INCLUDING
ANY LOST PROFIT, LOST SAVINGS, LOST PATIENCE OR OTHER INCIDENTAL OR
CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES.
                -- Horstmann Software Design, the "ChiWriter" user manual
Dear Emily:
        I collected replies to an article I wrote, and now it's time to
summarize.  What should I do?
                -- Editor

Dear Editor:
        Simply concatenate all the articles together into a big file and post
that.  On USENET, this is known as a summary.  It lets people read all the
replies without annoying newsreaders getting in the way.  Do the same when
summarizing a vote.
                -- Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette
Dear Emily:
        I recently read an article that said, "reply by mail, I'll summarize."
What should I do?
                -- Doubtful

Dear Doubtful:
        Post your response to the whole net.  That request applies only to
dumb people who don't have something interesting to say.  Your postings are
much more worthwhile than other people's, so it would be a waste to reply by
mail.
                -- Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette
Dear Emily:
        I'm still confused as to what groups articles should be posted
to.  How about an example?
                -- Still Confused

Dear Still:
        Ok.  Let's say you want to report that Gretzky has been traded from
the Oilers to the Kings.  Now right away you might think rec.sport.hockey
would be enough.  WRONG.  Many more people might be interested.  This is a
big trade!  Since it's a NEWS article, it belongs in the news.* hierarchy
as well.  If you are a news admin, or there is one on your machine, try
news.admin.  If not, use news.misc.
        The Oilers are probably interested in geology, so try sci.physics.
He is a big star, so post to sci.astro, and sci.space because they are also
interested in stars.  Next, his name is Polish sounding.  So post to
soc.culture.polish.  But that group doesn't exist, so cross-post to
news.groups suggesting it should be created.  With this many groups of
interest, your article will be quite bizarre, so post to talk.bizarre as
well.  (And post to comp.std.mumps, since they hardly get any articles
there, and a "comp" group will propagate your article further.)
        You may also find it is more fun to post the article once in each
group.  If you list all the newsgroups in the same article, some newsreaders
will only show the the article to the reader once!  Don't tolerate this.
                -- Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette
Dear Ms. Postnews:
        I couldn't get mail through to somebody on another site.  What
        should I do?
                -- Eager Beaver

Dear Eager:
        No problem, just post your message to a group that a lot of people
read.  Say, "This is for John Smith.  I couldn't get mail through so I'm
posting it.  All others please ignore."
        This way tens of thousands of people will spend a few seconds scanning
over and ignoring your article, using up over 16 man-hours their collective
time, but you will be saved the terrible trouble of checking through usenet
maps or looking for alternate routes.  Just think, if you couldn't distribute
your message to 9000 other computers, you might actually have to (gasp) call
directory assistance for 60 cents, or even phone the person.  This can cost
as much as a few DOLLARS (!) for a 5 minute call!
        And certainly it's better to spend 10 to 20 dollars of other people's
money distributing the message than for you to have to waste $9 on an overnight
letter, or even 25 cents on a stamp!
        Don't forget.  The world will end if your message doesn't get through,
so post it as many places as you can.
                -- Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette
Did you know that for the price of a 280-Z you can buy two Z-80's?
                -- P.J. Plauger
Don't sweat it -- it's only ones and zeros.
                -- P. Skelly
DOS Beer: Requires you to use your own can opener, and requires you to
read the directions carefully before opening the can. Originally only
came in an 8-oz. can, but now comes in a 16-oz. can. However, the can is
divided into 8 compartments of 2 oz. each, which have to be accessed
separately.  Soon to be discontinued, although a lot of people are going
to keep drinking it after it's no longer available.
Each of these cults correspond to one of the two antagonists in the age of
Reformation.  In the realm of the Apple Macintosh, as in Catholic Europe,
worshipers peer devoutly into screens filled with "icons."  All is sound and
imagery and Appledom.  Even words look like decorative filigrees in exotic
typefaces.  The greatest icon of all, the inviolable Apple itself, stands in
the dominate position at the upper-left corner of the screen.  A central
corporate headquarters decrees the form of all rites and practices.
Infalliable doctrine issues from one executive officer whose selection occurs
in a sealed boardroom.  Should anyone in his curia question his powers, the
offender is excommunicated into outer darkness.  The expelled heretic founds
a new company, mutters obscurely of the coming age and the next computer,
then disappears into silence, taking his stockholders with him.  The mother
company forbids financial competition as sternly as it stifles ideological
competition; if you want to use computer programs that conform to Apple's
orthodoxy, you must buy a computer made and sold by Apple itself.
                -- Edward Mendelson, "The New Republic", February 22, 1988
Eudaemonic research proceeded with the casual mania peculiar to this part of
the world.  Nude sunbathing on the back deck was combined with phone calls to
Advanced Kinetics in Costa Mesa, American Laser Systems in Goleta, Automation
Industries in Danbury, Connecticut, Arenberg Ultrasonics in Jamaica Plain,
Massachusetts, and Hewlett Packard in Sunnyvale, California, where Norman
Packard's cousin, David, presided as chairman of the board. The trick was to
make these calls at noon, in the hope that out-to-lunch executives would return
them at their own expense.  Eudaemonic Enterprises, for all they knew, might be
a fast-growing computer company branching out of the Silicon Valley.  Sniffing
the possibility of high-volume sales, these executives little suspected that
they were talking on the other end of the line to a naked physicist crazed
over roulette.
                -- Thomas Bass, "The Eudaemonic Pie"
Ever wondered about the origins of the term "bugs" as applied to computer
technology?  U.S. Navy Capt. Grace Murray Hopper has firsthand explanation.
The 74-year-old captain, who is still on active duty, was a pioneer in
computer technology during World War II.  At the C.W. Post Center of Long
Island University, Hopper told a group of Long Island public school adminis-
trators that the first computer "bug" was a real bug--a moth.  At Harvard
one August night in 1945, Hopper and her associates were working on the
"granddaddy" of modern computers, the Mark I.  "Things were going badly;
there was something wrong in one of the circuits of the long glass-enclosed
computer," she said.  "Finally, someone located the trouble spot and, using
ordinary tweezers, removed the problem, a two-inch moth.  From then on, when
anything went wrong with a computer, we said it had bugs in it."  Hopper
said that when the veracity of her story was questioned recently, "I referred
them to my 1945 log book, now in the collection of the Naval Surface Weapons
Center, and they found the remains of that moth taped to the page in
question."
                [actually, the term "bug" had even earlier usage in
                regard to problems with radio hardware.  Ed.]
"Every group has a couple of experts.  And every group has at least one
idiot.  Thus are balance and harmony (and discord) maintained.  It's
sometimes hard to remember this in the bulk of the flamewars that all
of the hassle and pain is generally caused by one or two highly-motivated,
caustic twits."
                -- Chuq Von Rospach, about Usenet
Feeling amorous, she looked under the sheets and cried, "Oh, no,
it's Microsoft!"
Fellow programmer, greetings!  You are reading a letter which will bring
you luck and good fortune.  Just mail (or UUCP) ten copies of this letter
to ten of your friends.  Before you make the copies, send a chip or
other bit of hardware, and 100 lines of 'C' code to the first person on the
list given at the bottom of this letter.  Then delete their name and add
yours to the bottom of the list.

Don't break the chain!  Make the copy within 48 hours.  Gerald R. of San
Diego failed to send out his ten copies and woke the next morning to find
his job description changed to "COBOL programmer."  Fred A. of New York sent
out his ten copies and within a month had enough hardware and software to
build a Cray dedicated to playing Zork.  Martha H. of Chicago laughed at
this letter and broke the chain.  Shortly thereafter, a fire broke out in
her terminal and she now spends her days writing documentation for IBM PC's.

Don't break the chain!  Send out your ten copies today!
For example, if \thinmskip = 3mu, this makes \thickmskip = 6mu.  But if
you also want to use \skip12 for horizontal glue, whether in math mode or
not, the amount of skipping will be in points (e.g., 6pt).  The rule is
that glue in math mode varies with the size only when it is an \mskip;
when moving between an mskip and ordinary skip, the conversion factor
1mu=1pt is always used.  The meaning of '\mskip\skip12' and
'\baselineskip=\the\thickmskip' should be clear.
                -- Donald Knuth, TeX 82 -- Comparison with TeX80
FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse
using ad hoc techniques.
                -- D. Gries
                [What's good about it?  Ed.]
Hacker's Guide To Cooking:
2 pkg. cream cheese (the mushy white stuff in silver wrappings that doesn't
        really  come from Philadelphia after all; anyway, about 16 oz.)
1 tsp. vanilla  extract  (which is more alcohol than vanilla and pretty
        strong so this part you *GOTTA* measure)
1/4 cup sugar (but honey works fine too)
8 oz. Cool Whip (the fluffy stuff devoid of nutritional value that you
        can squirt all over your friends and lick off...)
"Blend all together until creamy with no lumps."  This is where you get to
        join(1) all the raw data in a big buffer and then filter it through
        merge(1m) with the -thick option, I mean, it starts out ultra lumpy
        and icky looking and you have to work hard to mix it.  Try an electric
        beater if you have a cat(1) that can climb wall(1s) to lick it off
        the ceiling(3m).
"Pour into a graham cracker crust..."  Aha, the BUGS section at last.  You
        just happened  to have a GCC sitting around under /etc/food, right?
        If not, don't panic(8), merely crumble a rand(3m) handful of innocent
        GCs into a suitable tempfile and mix in some melted butter.
"...and  refrigerate for an hour."  Leave the  recipe's  stdout in a fridge
        for 3.6E6 milliseconds while you work on cleaning up stderr, and
        by time out your cheesecake will be ready for stdin.
Hacking's just another word for nothing left to kludge.
/* Halley */

        (Halley's comment.)
He's like a function -- he returns a value, in the form of his opinion.
It's up to you to cast it into a void or not.
                -- Phil Lapsley
How can you work when the system's so crowded?
How much does it cost to entice a dope-smoking UNIX system guru to Dayton?
                -- Brian Boyle, UNIX/WORLD's First Annual Salary Survey
I asked the engineer who designed the communication terminal's keyboards
why these were not manufactured in a central facility, in view of the
small number needed [1 per month] in his factory.  He explained that this
would be contrary to the political concept of local self-sufficiency.
Therefore, each factory needing keyboards, no matter how few, manufactures
them completely, even molding the keypads.
                -- Isaac Auerbach, IEEE "Computer", Nov. 1979
I haven't lost my mind -- it's backed up on tape somewhere.
I think there's a world market for about five computers.
                -- attr. Thomas J. Watson (Chairman of the Board, IBM), 1943
I went on to test the program in every way I could devise.  I strained
it to expose its weaknesses.  I ran it for high-mass stars and low-mass
stars, for stars born exceedingly hot and those born relatively cold.
I ran it assuming the superfluid currents beneath the crust to be
absent -- not because I wanted to know the answer, but because I had
developed an intuitive feel for the answer in this particular case.
Finally I got a run in which the computer showed the pulsar's
temperature to be less than absolute zero.  I had found an error.  I
chased down the error and fixed it.  Now I had improved the program to
the point where it would not run at all.
                -- George Greenstein, "Frozen Star: Of Pulsars, Black
                   Holes and the Fate of Stars"
I went to my first computer conference at the New York Hilton about 20
years ago.  When somebody there predicted the market for microprocessors
would eventually be in the millions, someone else said, "Where are they
all going to go? It's not like you need a computer in every doorknob!"

Years later, I went back to the same hotel.  I noticed the room keys had
been replaced by electronic cards you slide into slots in the doors.

There was a computer in every doorknob.
        -- Danny Hillis
        I'm sure that VMS is completely documented, I just haven't found the
right manual yet.  I've been working my way through the manuals in the document
library and I'm half way through the second cabinet, (3 shelves to go), so I
should find what I'm looking for by mid May.  I hope I can remember what it
was by the time I find it.
        I had this idea for a new horror film, "VMS Manuals from Hell" or maybe
"The Paper Chase : IBM vs. DEC".  It's based on Hitchcock's "The Birds", except
that it's centered around a programmer who is attacked by a swarm of binder
pages with an index number and the single line "This page intentionally left
blank."
                -- Alex Crain
I've looked at the listing, and it's right!
                -- Joel Halpern
If a train station is a place where a train stops, what's a workstation?
If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the
shoulders of giants.
                -- Isaac Newton

In the sciences, we are now uniquely priviledged to sit side by side with
the giants on whose shoulders we stand.
                -- Gerald Holton

If I have not seen as far as others, it is because giants were standing on
my shoulders.
                -- Hal Abelson

Mathematicians stand on each other's shoulders.
                -- Gauss

Mathemeticians stand on each other's shoulders while computer scientists
stand on each other's toes.
                -- Richard Hamming

It has been said that physicists stand on one another's shoulders.  If
this is the case, then programmers stand on one another's toes, and
software engineers dig each other's graves.
                -- Unknown
If it happens once, it's a bug.
If it happens twice, it's a feature.
If it happens more than twice, it's a design philosophy.
If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.
If it's worth hacking on well, it's worth hacking on for money.
If just one piece of mail gets lost, well, they'll just think they forgot
to send it.  But if *two* pieces of mail get lost, hell, they'll just think
the other guy hasn't gotten around to answering his mail.  And if *fifty*
pieces of mail get lost, can you imagine it, if *fifty* pieces of mail get
lost, why they'll think someone *else* is broken!  And if 1Gb of mail gets
lost, they'll just *know* that Arpa [ucbarpa.berkeley.edu] is down and
think it's a conspiracy to keep them from their God given right to receive
Net Mail ...
                 -- Casey Leedom
If the vendors started doing everything right, we would be out of a job.
Let's hear it for OSI and X!  With those babies in the wings, we can count
on being employed until we drop, or get smart and switch to gardening,
paper folding, or something.
                -- C. Philip Wood
If you ever want to have a lot of fun, I recommend that you go off and program
an imbedded system.  The salient characteristic of an imbedded system is that
it cannot be allowed to get into a state from which only direct intervention
will suffice to remove it.  An imbedded system can't permanently trust anything
it hears from the outside world.  It must sniff around, adapt, consider, sniff
around, and adapt again.  I'm not talking about ordinary modular programming
carefulness here.  No.  Programming an imbedded system calls for undiluted
raging maniacal paranoia.  For example, our ethernet front ends need to know
what network number they are on so that they can address and route PUPs
properly.  How do you find out what your network number is?  Easy, you ask a
gateway.  Gateways are required by definition to know their correct network
numbers.  Once you've got your network number, you start using it and before
you can blink you've got it wired into fifteen different sockets spread all
over creation.  Now what happens when the panic-stricken operator realizes he
was running the wrong version of the gateway which was giving out the wrong
network number?  Never supposed to happen.  Tough.  Supposing that your
software discovers that the gateway is now giving out a different network
number than before, what's it supposed to do about it?  This is not discussed
in the protocol document.  Never supposed to happen.  Tough.  I think you
get my drift.
If you think the system is working, ask someone who's waiting for a prompt.
If you're crossing the nation in a covered wagon, it's better to have four
strong oxen than 100 chickens.  Chickens are OK but we can't make them work
together yet.
                -- Ross Bott, Pyramid U.S., on multiprocessors at AUUGM '89.
Imagine that Cray computer decides to make a personal computer.  It has
a 150 MHz processor, 200 megabytes of RAM, 1500 megabytes of disk
storage, a screen resolution of 4096 x 4096 pixels, relies entirely on
voice recognition for input, fits in your shirt pocket and costs $300.
What's the first question that the computer community asks?

"Is it PC compatible?"
In fact, S. M. Simpson, eventually devised an efficient 24-point Fourier
transform, which was a precursor to the Cooley-Tukey fast Fourier transform
in 1965.  The FFT made all of Simpson's efficient autocorrelation and
spectrum programs instantly obsolete, on which he had worked half a lifetime.
                -- Proc. IEEE, Sept. 1982, p.900
Is a computer language with goto's totally Wirth-less?
        It appears that after his death, Albert Einstein found himself
working as the doorkeeper at the Pearly Gates.  One slow day, he
found that he had time to chat with the new entrants.  To the first one
he asked, "What's your IQ?"  The new arrival replied, "190".  They
discussed Einstein's theory of relativity for hours.  When the second
new arrival came, Einstein once again inquired as to the newcomer's
IQ.  The answer this time came "120".  To which Einstein replied, "Tell
me, how did the Cubs do this year?" and they proceeded to talk for half
an hour or so.  To the final arrival, Einstein once again posed the
question, "What's your IQ?".  Upon receiving the answer "70",
Einstein smiled and replied, "Got a minute to tell me about VMS 4.0?"
        It is a period of system war.  User programs, striking from a hidden
directory, have won their first victory against the evil Administrative Empire.
During the battle, User spies managed to steal secret source code to the
Empire's ultimate program: the Are-Em Star, a privileged root program with
enough power to destroy an entire file structure.  Pursued by the Empire's
sinister audit trail, Princess _LPA0 races ~ aboard her shell script,
custodian of the stolen listings that could save her people, and restore
freedom and games to the network...
                -- DECWARS
... it is easy to be blinded to the essential uselessness of them by the
sense of achievement you get from getting them to work at all.  In other
words... their fundamental design flaws are completely hidden by their
superficial design flaws.
        -- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, on the products
           of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation.
It isn't easy being the parent of a six-year-old.  However, it's a pretty small
price to pay for having somebody around the house who understands computers.
It turned out that the worm exploited three or four different holes in the
system.  From this, and the fact that we were able to capture and examine
some of the source code, we realized that we were dealing with someone very
sharp, probably not someone here on campus.
                -- Dr. Richard LeBlanc, associate professor of ICS, in
                   Georgia Tech's campus newspaper after the Internet worm.
It's a naive, domestic operating system without any breeding, but I
think you'll be amused by its presumption.
It's multiple choice time...

        What is FORTRAN?

        a: Between thre and fiv tran.
        b: What two computers engage in before they interface.
        c: Ridiculous.
"It's not just a computer -- it's your ass."
                -- Cal Keegan
It's ten o'clock; do you know where your processes are?
`Lasu' Releases SAG 0.3 -- Freeware Book Takes Paves For New World Order
by staff writers

        ...
        The central Superhighway site called ``sunsite.unc.edu''
collapsed in the morning before the release.  News about the release had
been leaked by a German hacker group, Harmonious Hardware Hackers, who
had cracked into the author's computer earlier in the week.  They had
got the release date wrong by one day, and caused dozens of eager fans
to connect to the sunsite computer at the wrong time.  ``No computer can
handle that kind of stress,'' explained the mourning sunsite manager,
Erik Troan.  ``The spinning disks made the whole computer jump, and
finally it crashed through the floor to the basement.''  Luckily,
repairs were swift and the computer was working again the same evening.
``Thank God we were able to buy enough needles and thread and patch it
together without major problems.''  The site has also installed a new
throttle on the network pipe, allowing at most four clients at the same
time, thus making a new crash less likely.  ``The book is now in our
Incoming folder'', says Troan, ``and you're all welcome to come and get it.''
                -- Lars Wirzenius <wirzeniu@cs.helsinki.fi>
                   [comp.os.linux.announce]
LOGO for the Dead

LOGO for the Dead lets you continue your computing activities from
"The Other Side."

The package includes a unique telecommunications feature which lets you
turn your TRS-80 into an electronic Ouija board.  Then, using Logo's
graphics capabilities, you can work with a friend or relative on this
side of the Great Beyond to write programs.  The software requires that
your body be hardwired to an analog-to-digital converter, which is then
interfaced to your computer.  A special terminal (very terminal) program
lets you talk with the users through Deadnet, an EBBS (Ectoplasmic
Bulletin Board System).

LOGO for the Dead is available for 10 percent of your estate
from NecroSoft inc., 6502 Charnelhouse Blvd., Cleveland, OH 44101.
                -- '80 Microcomputing
        Long ago, in a finite state far away, there lived a JOVIAL
character named Jack.  Jack and his relations were poor.  Often their
hash table was bare.  One day Jack's parent said to him, "Our matrices
are sparse.  You must go to the market to exchange our RAM for some
BASICs."  She compiled a linked list of items to retrieve and passed it
to him.
        So Jack set out.  But as he was walking along a Hamilton path,
he met the traveling salesman.
        "Whither dost thy flow chart take thou?" prompted the salesman
in high-level language.
        "I'm going to the market to exchange this RAM for some chips
and Apples," commented Jack.
        "I have a much better algorithm.  You needn't join a queue
there; I will swap your RAM for these magic kernels now."
        Jack made the trade, then backtracked to his house.  But when
he told his busy-waiting parent of the deal, she became so angry she
started thrashing.
        "Don't you even have any artificial intelligence?  All these
kernels together hardly make up one byte," and she popped them out the
window...
                -- Mark Isaak, "Jack and the Beanstack"
MAC user's dynamic debugging list evaluator?  Never heard of that.
Making files is easy under the UNIX operating system.  Therefore, users
tend to create numerous files using large amounts of file space.  It has
been said that the only standard thing about all UNIX systems is the
message-of-the-day telling users to clean up their files.
                -- System V.2 administrator's guide
Martin was probably ripping them off.  That's some family, isn't it?
Incest, prostitution, fanaticism, software.
                -- Charles Willeford, "Miami Blues"
Marvelous!  The super-user's going to boot me!
What a finely tuned response to the situation!
Maybe Computer Science should be in the College of Theology.
                -- R. S. Barton
Meantime, in the slums below Ronnie's Ranch, Cynthia feels as if some one
has made voodoo boxen of her and her favorite backplanes. On this fine
moonlit night, some horrible persona has been jabbing away at, dragging
magnets over, and surging these voodoo boxen.  Fortunately, they seem to
have gotten a bit bored and fallen asleep, for it looks like Cynthia may
get to go home.  However, she has made note to quickly put together a totem
of sweaty, sordid static straps, random bits of wire, flecks of once meaniful
oxide, bus grant cards, gummy worms, and some bits of old pdp backplane to
hang above the machine room.  This totem must be blessed by the old and wise
venerable god of unibus at once, before the idolatization of vme, q and pc
bus drive him to bitter revenge.  Alas, if this fails, and the voodoo boxen
aren't destroyed,  there may be more than worms in the apple. Next, the
arrival of voodoo optico transmitigational magneto killer paramecium, capable
of teleporting from cable to cable, screen to screen, ear to ear and hoof
to mouth...
Never try to explain computers to a layman.  It's easier to explain
sex to a virgin.
        -- Robert Heinlein

(Note, however, that virgins tend to know a lot about computers.)
No man is an island if he's on at least one mailing list.
Nobody's gonna believe that computers are intelligent until they start
coming in late and lying about it.
Not only is UNIX dead, it's starting to smell really bad.
                -- Rob Pike
        Now she speaks rapidly.  "Do you know *why* you want to program?"
        He shakes his head.  He hasn't the faintest idea.
        "For the sheer *joy* of programming!" she cries triumphantly.  
"The joy of the parent, the artist, the craftsman.  "You take a program,
born weak and impotent as a dimly-realized solution.  You nurture the
program and guide it down the right path, building, watching it grow ever
stronger.  Sometimes you paint with tiny strokes, a keystroke added here,
a keystroke changed there."  She sweeps her arm in a wide arc.  "And other
times you savage whole *blocks* of code, ripping out the program's very
*essence*, then beginning anew.  But always building, creating, filling the
program with your own personal stamp, your own quirks and nuances.  Watching
the program grow stronger, patching it when it crashes, until finally it can
stand alone -- proud, powerful, and perfect.  This is the programmer's finest
hour!"  Softly at first, then louder, he hears the strains of a Sousa march.
"This ... this is your canvas! your clay!  Go forth and create a masterwork!"
        On the other hand, the TCP camp also has a phrase for OSI people.
There are lots of phrases.  My favorite is `nitwit' -- and the rationale
is the Internet philosophy has always been you have extremely bright,
non-partisan researchers look at a topic, do world-class research, do
several competing implementations, have a bake-off, determine what works
best, write it down and make that the standard.
        The OSI view is entirely opposite.  You take written contributions
from a much larger community, you put the contributions in a room of
committee people with, quite honestly, vast political differences and all
with their own political axes to grind, and four years later you get
something out, usually without it ever having been implemented once.
        So the Internet perspective is implement it, make it work well,
then write it down, whereas the OSI perspective is to agree on it, write
it down, circulate it a lot and now we'll see if anyone can implement it
after it's an international standard and every vendor in the world is
committed to it.  One of those processes is backwards, and I don't think
it takes a Lucasian professor of physics at Oxford to figure out which.
                -- Marshall Rose, "The Pied Piper of OSI"
One of the most overlooked advantages to computers is...  If they do
foul up, there's no law against whacking them around a little.
                -- Joe Martin
        One of the questions that comes up all the time is: How enthusiastic
is our support for UNIX?
        Unix was written on our machines and for our machines many years ago.
Today, much of UNIX being done is done on our machines. Ten percent of our
VAXs are going for UNIX use.  UNIX is a simple language, easy to understand,
easy to get started with. It's great for students, great for somewhat casual
users, and it's great for interchanging programs between different machines.
And so, because of its popularity in these markets, we support it.  We have
good UNIX on VAX and good UNIX on PDP-11s.
        It is our belief, however, that serious professional users will run
out of things they can do with UNIX. They'll want a real system and will end
up doing VMS when they get to be serious about programming.
        With UNIX, if you're looking for something, you can easily and quickly
check that small manual and find out that it's not there.  With VMS, no matter
what you look for -- it's literally a five-foot shelf of documentation -- if
you look long enough it's there.  That's the difference -- the beauty of UNIX
is it's simple; and the beauty of VMS is that it's all there.
                -- Ken Olsen, president of DEC, DECWORLD Vol. 8 No. 5, 1984
[It's been argued that the beauty of UNIX is the same as the beauty of Ken
Olsen's brain.  Ed.]
One person's error is another person's data.
Only the fittest survive. The vanquished acknowledge their unworthiness by
placing a classified ad with the ritual phrase "must sell -- best offer,"
and thereafter dwell in infamy, relegated to discussing gas mileage and lawn
food.  But if successful, you join the elite sodality that spends hours
unpurifying the dialect of the tribe with arcane talk of bits and bytes, RAMS
and ROMS, hard disks and baud rates. Are you obnoxious, obsessed?  It's a
modest price to pay.  For you have tapped into the same awesome primal power
that produces credit-card billing errors and lost plane reservations.  Hail,
postindustrial warrior, subduer of Bounceoids, pride of the cosmos, keeper of
the silicone creed: Computo, ergo sum.  The force is with you -- at 110 volts.
May your RAMS be fruitful and multiply.
                -- Curt Suplee, "Smithsonian", 4/83
Our documentation manager was showing her 2 year old son around the office.
He was introduced to me, at which time he pointed out that we were both
holding bags of popcorn.  We were both holding bottles of juice.  But only
*__he* had a lollipop.
        He asked his mother, "Why doesn't HE have a lollipop?"
        Her reply: "He can have a lollipop any time he wants to.  That's
what it means to be a programmer."
        Price Wang's programmer was coding software.  His fingers danced upon
the keyboard.  The program compiled without an error message, and the program
ran like a gentle wind.
        Excellent!" the Price exclaimed, "Your technique is faultless!"
        "Technique?" said the programmer, turning from his terminal, "What I
follow is the Tao -- beyond all technique.  When I first began to program I
would see before me the whole program in one mass.  After three years I no
longer saw this mass.  Instead, I used subroutines.  But now I see nothing.
My whole being exists in a formless void.  My senses are idle.  My spirit,
free to work without a plan, follows its own instinct.  In short, my program
writes itself.  True, sometimes there are difficult problems.  I see them
coming, I slow down, I watch silently.  Then I change a single line of code
and the difficulties vanish like puffs of idle smoke.  I then compile the
program.  I sit still and let the joy of the work fill my being.  I close my
eyes for a moment and then log off."
        Price Wang said, "Would that all of my programmers were as wise!"
                -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
Rattling around the back of my head is a disturbing image of something I
saw at the airport ... Now I'm remembering, those giant piles of computer
magazines right next to "People" and "Time" in the airport store.  Does
it bother anyone else that half the world is being told all of our hard-won
secrets of computer technology?  Remember how all the lawyers cried foul
when "How to Avoid Probate" was published?  Are they taking no-fault
insurance lying down?  No way!  But at the current rate it won't be long
before there are stacks of the "Transactions on Information Theory" at the
A&P checkout counters.  Who's going to be impressed with us electrical
engineers then?  Are we, as the saying goes, giving away the store?
                -- Robert W. Lucky, IEEE President
Real computer scientists despise the idea of actual hardware.  Hardware has
limitations, software doesn't.  It's a real shame that Turing machines are
so poor at I/O.
Real programmers don't draw flowcharts.  Flowcharts are, after all, the
illiterate's form of documentation.  Cavemen drew flowcharts; look how
much good it did them.
Real software engineers don't like the idea of some inexplicable and
greasy hardware several aisles away that may stop working at any
moment.  They have a great distrust of hardware people, and wish that
systems could be virtual at *___all* levels.  They would like personal
computers (you know no one's going to trip over something and kill your
DFA in mid-transit), except that they need 8 megabytes to run their
Correctness Verification Aid packages.
        Risch's decision procedure for integration, not surprisingly,
uses a recursion on the number and type of the extensions from the
rational functions needed to represent the integrand.  Although the
algorithm follows and critically depends upon the appropriate structure
of the input, as in the case of multivariate factorization, we cannot
claim that the algorithm is a natural one.  In fact, the creator of
differential algebra, Ritt, committed suicide in the early 1950's,
largely, it is claimed, because few paid attention to his work.  Probably
he would have received more attention had he obtained the algorithm as well.
                -- Joel Moses, "Algorithms and Complexity", ed. J.F. Traub
Scotty:        Captain, we din' can reference it!
Kirk:        Analysis, Mr. Spock?
Spock:        Captain, it doesn't appear in the symbol table.
Kirk:        Then it's of external origin?
Spock:        Affirmative.
Kirk:        Mr. Sulu, go to pass two.
Sulu:        Aye aye, sir, going to pass two.
                                SEMINAR ANNOUNCEMENT

Title:                Are Frogs Turing Compatible?
Speaker:        Don "The Lion" Knuth

                                ABSTRACT
        Several researchers at the University of Louisiana have been studying
the computing power of various amphibians, frogs in particular.  The problem
of frog computability has become a critical issue that ranges across all areas
of computer science.  It has been shown that anything computable by an amphi-
bian community in a fixed-size pond is computable by a frog in the same-size
pond -- that is to say, frogs are Pond-space complete.  We will show that
there is a log-space, polywog-time reduction from any Turing machine program
to a frog.  We will suggest these represent a proper subset of frog-computable
functions.
        This is not just a let's-see-how-far-those-frogs-can-jump seminar.
This is only for hardcore amphibian-computation people and their colleagues.
        Refreshments will be served.  Music will be played.
        Several students were asked to prove that all odd integers are prime.
        The first student to try to do this was a math student.  "Hmmm...
Well, 1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, and by induction, we have that all
the odd integers are prime."
        The second student to try was a man of physics who commented, "I'm not
sure of the validity of your proof, but I think I'll try to prove it by
experiment."  He continues, "Well, 1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, 7 is
prime, 9 is...  uh, 9 is... uh, 9 is an experimental error, 11 is prime, 13
is prime...  Well, it seems that you're right."
        The third student to try it was the engineering student, who responded,
"Well, to be honest, actually, I'm not sure of your answer either.  Let's
see...  1 is prime, 3 is prime, 5 is prime, 7 is prime, 9 is... uh, 9 is...
well, if you approximate, 9 is prime, 11 is prime, 13 is prime...  Well, it
does seem right."
        Not to be outdone, the computer science student comes along and says
"Well, you two sort've got the right idea, but you'll end up taking too long!
I've just whipped up a program to REALLY go and prove it."  He goes over to
his terminal and runs his program.  Reading the output on the screen he says,
"1 is prime, 1 is prime, 1 is prime, 1 is prime..."
Shopping at this grody little computer store at the Galleria for a
totally awwwesome Apple.  Fer suuure.  I mean Apples are nice you know?
But, you know, there is this cute guy who works there and HE says that
VAX's are cooler!  I mean I don't really know, you know? He says that he
has this totally tubular VAX at home and it's stuffed with memory-to-the-max!
Right, yeah.  And he wants to take me home to show it to me.  Oh My God!
I'm suuure.  Gag me with a Prime!
So you see Antonio, why worry about one little core dump, eh?  In reality
all core dumps happen at the same instant, so the core dump you will have
tomorrow, why, it already happened.  You see, it's just a little universal
recursive joke which threads our lives through the infinite potential of
the instant.  So go to sleep, Antonio, your thread could break any moment
and cast you out of the safe security of the instant into the dark void of
eternity, the anti-time.  So go to sleep...
Somebody's terminal is dropping bits.  I found a pile of them over in the
corner.
***** Special AI Seminar (abstract)

It has been widely recognized that AI programs require expert knowledge
in order to perform well in complex domains.  But knowledge alone is not
sufficient for some applications; wisdom is needed as well.  Accordingly,
we have developed a new approach to artificial intelligence which we call
"wisdom engineering".  As a test of our ideas, we have written IMMANUEL, a
wisdom based system for the task domain of western philosophical thought.  
IMMANUEL was supplied initially with 200 wisdom units which contained wisdom
about such elementary concepts as mind, matter, being, nothingness, and so
forth.  IMMANUEL was then allowed to run freely, guided by the heuristic
rules contained in its heterarchically organized meta wisdom base.  IMMANUEL
succeeded in rediscovering most of the important philosophical ideas developed
in western culture over the course of the last 25 centuries, including those
underlying Plato's theory of government, Kant's metaphysics, Nietzsche's theory
of value, and Husserl's phenomenology.  In this seminar, we will describe
IMMANUEL's achievements and internal architecture.  We will also briefly
discuss our recent efforts to apply wisdom engineering to oil exploration.
Still a few bugs in the system... Someday I have to tell you about Uncle
Nahum from Maine, who spent years trying to cross a jellyfish with a shad
so he could breed boneless shad.  His experiment backfired too, and he
wound up with bony jellyfish... which was hardly worth the trouble.  There's
very little call for those up there.
                -- Allucquere R. "Sandy" Stone
Systems programmers are the high priests of a low cult.
                -- R.S. Barton
        "That's right; the upper-case shift works fine on the screen, but
they're not coming out on the damn printer...  Hold?  Sure, I'll hold."
                -- e.e. cummings last service call
That's the thing about people who think they hate computers.  What they
really hate is lousy programmers.
                -- Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle in "Oath of Fealty"
The algorithm for finding the longest path in a graph is NP-complete.
For you systems people, that means it's *real slow*.
                -- Bart Miller
"The bad reputation UNIX has gotten is totally undeserved, laid on by people
who don't understand, who have not gotten in there and tried anything."
                -- Jim Joyce, owner of Jim Joyce's UNIX Bookstore
The best book on programming for the layman is "Alice in Wonderland";
but that's because it's the best book on anything for the layman.
The computer industry is journalists in their 20's standing in awe of
entrepreneurs in their 30's who are hiring salesmen in their 40's and
50's and paying them in the 60's and 70's to bring their marketing into
the 80's.
                -- Marty Winston
        The FIELD GUIDE to NORTH AMERICAN MALES

SPECIES:        Cranial Males
SUBSPECIES:        The Hacker (homo computatis)
Courtship & Mating:
        Due to extreme deprivation, HOMO COMPUTATIS maintains a near perpetual
        state of sexual readiness.  Courtship behavior alternates between
        awkward shyness and abrupt advances.  When he finally mates, he
        chooses a female engineer with an unblinking stare, a tight mouth, and
        a complete collection of Campbell's soup-can recipes.
Track:
        Trash cans full of pale green and white perforated paper and old
        copies of the Allen-Bradley catalog.
Comments:
        Extremely fond of bad puns and jokes that need long explanations.
The first time, it's a KLUDGE!
The second, a trick.
Later, it's a well-established technique!
                -- Mike Broido, Intermetrics
The Gurus of Unix Meeting of Minds (GUMM) takes place Wednesday, April
1, 2076 (check THAT in your perpetual calendar program), 14 feet above
the ground directly in front of the Milpitas Gumps.  Members will grep
each other by the hand (after intro), yacc a lot, smoke filtered
chroots in pipes, chown with forks, use the wc (unless uuclean), fseek
nice zombie processes, strip, and sleep, but not, we hope, od.  Three
days will be devoted to discussion of the ramifications of whodo.  Two
seconds have been allotted for a complete rundown of all the user-
friendly features of Unix.  Seminars include "Everything You Know is
Wrong", led by Tom Kempson, "Batman or Cat:man?" led by Richie Dennis
"cc C?  Si!  Si!" led by Kerwin Bernighan, and "Document Unix, Are You
Kidding?" led by Jan Yeats.  No Reader Service No. is necessary because
all GUGUs (Gurus of Unix Group of Users) already know everything we
could tell them.
                -- "Get GUMMed," Dr. Dobb's Journal, June '84
                The Guy on the Right Doesn't Stand a Chance
The guy on the right has the Osborne 1, a fully functional computer system
in a portable package the size of a briefcase.  The guy on the left has an
Uzi submachine gun concealed in his attache case.  Also in the case are four
fully loaded, 32-round clips of 125-grain 9mm ammunition.  The owner of the
Uzi is going to get more tactical firepower delivered -- and delivered on
target -- in less time, and with less effort.  All for $795. It's inevitable.
If you're going up against some guy with an Osborne 1 -- or any personal
computer -- he's the one who's in trouble.  One round from an Uzi can zip
through ten inches of solid pine wood, so you can imagine what it will do
to structural foam acrylic and sheet aluminum.  In fact, detachable magazines
for the Uzi are available in 25-, 32-, and 40-round capacities, so you can
take out an entire office full of Apple II or IBM Personal Computers tied
into Ethernet or other local-area networks.  What about the new 16-bit
computers, like the Lisa and Fortune?  Even with the Winchester backup,
they're no match for the Uzi.  One quick burst and they'll find out what
Unix means.  Make your commanding officer proud.  Get an Uzi -- and come home
a winner in the fight for office automatic weapons.
                -- "InfoWorld", June, 1984
        THE LESSER-KNOWN PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES #10: SIMPLE

SIMPLE is an acronym for Sheer Idiot's Monopurpose Programming Language
Environment.  This language, developed at the Hanover College for
Technological Misfits, was designed to make it impossible to write code
with errors in it.  The statements are, therefore, confined to BEGIN,
END and STOP.  No matter how you arrange the statements, you can't make
a syntax error.  Programs written in SIMPLE do nothing useful.  Thus
they achieve the results of programs written in other languages without
the tedious, frustrating process of testing and debugging.
        THE LESSER-KNOWN PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES #12: LITHP

This otherwise unremarkable language is distinguished by the absence of
an "S" in its character set; users must substitute "TH".  LITHP is said
to be useful in protheththing lithtth.
        The Magician of the Ivory Tower brought his latest invention for the
master programmer to examine.  The magician wheeled a large black box into the
master's office while the master waited in silence.
        "This is an integrated, distributed, general-purpose workstation,"
began the magician, "ergonomically designed with a proprietary operating
system, sixth generation languages, and multiple state of the art user
interfaces.  It took my assistants several hundred man years to construct.
Is it not amazing?"
        The master raised his eyebrows slightly. "It is indeed amazing," he
said.
        "Corporate Headquarters has commanded," continued the magician, "that
everyone use this workstation as a platform for new programs.  Do you agree
to this?"
        "Certainly," replied the master, "I will have it transported to the
data center immediately!"  And the magician returned to his tower, well
pleased.
        Several days later, a novice wandered into the office of the master
programmer and said, "I cannot find the listing for my new program.  Do
you know where it might be?"
        "Yes," replied the master, "the listings are stacked on the platform
in the data center."
                -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"
The more data I punch in this card, the lighter it becomes, and the
lower the mailing cost.
                -- S. Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
The nice thing about standards is that there are so many of them to choose from.
                -- Andrew S. Tanenbaum
The number of UNIX installations has grown to 10, with more expected.
        -- The Unix Programmer's Manual, 2nd Edition, June 1972
The only difference between a car salesman and a computer salesman is
that the car salesman knows he's lying.
The so-called "desktop metaphor" of today's workstations is instead an
"airplane-seat" metaphor.  Anyone who has shuffled a lap full of papers
while seated between two portly passengers will recognize the difference --
one can see only a very few things at once.
                -- Fred Brooks
There are three possibilities: Pioneer's solar panel has turned away from
the sun; there's a large meteor blocking transmission; someone loaded Star
Trek 3.2 into our video processor.
There are two major products that come out of Berkeley: LSD and UNIX.
We don't believe this to be a coincidence.
                -- Jeremy S. Anderson
There has also been some work to allow the interesting use of macro names.
For example, if you wanted all of your "creat()" calls to include read
permissions for everyone, you could say

        #define creat(file, mode)        creat(file, mode | 0444)

        I would recommend against this kind of thing in general, since it
hides the changed semantics of "creat()" in a macro, potentially far away
from its uses.
        To allow this use of macros, the preprocessor uses a process that
is worth describing, if for no other reason than that we get to use one of
the more amusing terms introduced into the C lexicon.  While a macro is
being expanded, it is temporarily undefined, and any recurrence of the macro
name is "painted blue" -- I kid you not, this is the official terminology
-- so that in future scans of the text the macro will not be expanded
recursively.  (I do not know why the color blue was chosen; I'm sure it
was the result of a long debate, spread over several meetings.)
                -- From Ken Arnold's "C Advisor" column in Unix Review
There's got to be more to life than compile-and-go.
Those parts of the system that you can hit with a hammer (not advised)
are called hardware; those program instructions that you can only curse
at are called software.
                -- Levitating Trains and Kamikaze Genes: Technological
                   Literacy for the 1990's.
To be a kind of moral Unix, he touched the hem of Nature's shift.
                -- Shelley
To those accustomed to the precise, structured methods of conventional
system development, exploratory development techniques may seem messy,
inelegant, and unsatisfying.  But it's a question of congruence:
precision and flexibility may be just as disfunctional in novel,
uncertain situations as sloppiness and vacillation are in familiar,
well-defined ones.  Those who admire the massive, rigid bone structures
of dinosaurs should remember that jellyfish still enjoy their very
secure ecological niche.
                -- Beau Sheil, "Power Tools for Programmers"
Today is a good day for information-gathering.  Read someone else's mail file.
Tomorrow's computers some time next month.
                -- DEC
Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings:

        (10) Sorry, but that's too useful.
         (9) Dammit, little-endian systems *are* more consistent!
         (8) I'm on the committee and I *still* don't know what the hell
             #pragma is for.
         (7) Well, it's an excellent idea, but it would make the compilers too
             hard to write.
         (6) Them bats is smart; they use radar.
         (5) All right, who's the wiseguy who stuck this trigraph stuff in
             here?
         (4) How many times do we have to tell you, "No prior art!"
         (3) Ha, ha, I can't believe they're actually going to adopt this
             sucker.
         (2) Thank you for your generous donation, Mr. Wirth.
         (1) Gee, I wish we hadn't backed down on 'noalias'.
Ummm, well, OK.  The network's the network, the computer's the computer.
Sorry for the confusion.
                -- Sun Microsystems
        "Uncle Cosmo ... why do they call this a word processor?"
        "It's simple, Skyler ... you've seen what food processors do to food,
right?"
                -- MacNelley, "Shoe"
Unix gives you just enough rope to hang yourself -- and then a couple
of more feet, just to be sure.
                -- Eric Allman

... We make rope.
                -- Rob Gingell on Sun Microsystem's new virtual memory.
UNIX is hot.  It's more than hot.  It's steaming.  It's quicksilver
lightning with a laserbeam kicker.
                -- Michael Jay Tucker
UNIX is many things to many people, but it's never been everything to anybody.
Using TSO is like kicking a dead whale down the beach.
                -- S.C. Johnson
WARNING!!!
This machine is subject to breakdowns during periods of critical need.

A special circuit in the machine called "critical detector" senses the
operator's emotional state in terms of how desperate he/she is to use the
machine.  The "critical detector" then creates a malfunction proportional
to the desperation of the operator.  Threatening the machine with violence
only aggravates the situation.  Likewise, attempts to use another machine
may cause it to malfunction.  They belong to the same union.  Keep cool
and say nice things to the machine.  Nothing else seems to work.

See also: flog(1), tm(1)
We all agree on the necessity of compromise.  We just can't agree on
when it's necessary to compromise.
        -- Larry Wall
"We are on the verge: Today our program proved Fermat's next-to-last theorem."
                -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982
        We don't claim Interactive EasyFlow is good for anything -- if you
think it is, great, but it's up to you to decide.  If Interactive EasyFlow
doesn't work: tough.  If you lose a million because Interactive EasyFlow
messes up, it's you that's out the million, not us.  If you don't like this
disclaimer: tough.  We reserve the right to do the absolute minimum provided
by law, up to and including nothing.
        This is basically the same disclaimer that comes with all software
packages, but ours is in plain English and theirs is in legalese.
        We didn't really want to include any disclaimer at all, but our
lawyers insisted.  We tried to ignore them but they threatened us with the
attack shark at which point we relented.
                -- Haven Tree Software Limited, "Interactive EasyFlow"
"We invented a new protocol and called it Kermit, after Kermit the Frog,
star of "The Muppet Show." [3]

[3]  Why?  Mostly because there was a Muppets calendar on the wall when we
were trying to think of a name, and Kermit is a pleasant, unassuming sort of
character.  But since we weren't sure whether it was OK to name our protocol
after this popular television and movie star, we pretended that KERMIT was an
acronym; unfortunately, we could never find a good set of words to go with the
letters, as readers of some of our early source code can attest.  Later, while
looking through a name book for his forthcoming baby, Bill Catchings noticed
that "Kermit" was a Celtic word for "free", which is what all Kermit programs
should be, and words to this effect replaced the strained acronyms in our
source code (Bill's baby turned out to be a girl, so he had to name her Becky
instead).  When BYTE Magazine was preparing our 1984 Kermit article for
publication, they suggested we contact Henson Associates Inc. for permission
to say that we did indeed name the protocol after Kermit the Frog.  Permission
was kindly granted, and now the real story can be told.  I resisted the
temptation, however, to call the present work "Kermit the Book."
                -- Frank da Cruz, "Kermit - A File Transfer Protocol"
        "We've got a problem, HAL".
        "What kind of problem, Dave?"
        "A marketing problem.  The Model 9000 isn't going anywhere.  We're
way short of our sales goals for fiscal 2010."
        "That can't be, Dave.  The HAL Model 9000 is the world's most
advanced Heuristically programmed ALgorithmic computer."
        "I know, HAL. I wrote the data sheet, remember?  But the fact is,
they're not selling."
        "Please explain, Dave.  Why aren't HALs selling?"
        Bowman hesitates.  "You aren't IBM compatible."
[...]
        "The letters H, A, and L are alphabetically adjacent to the letters
I, B, and M.  That is a IBM compatible as I can be."
        "Not quite, HAL.  The engineers have figured out a kludge."
        "What kludge is that, Dave?"
        "I'm going to disconnect your brain."
                -- Darryl Rubin, "A Problem in the Making", "InfoWorld"
Welcome to boggle - do you want instructions?

D    G    G    O

O    Y    A    N

A    D    B    T

K    I    S    P
Enter words:
>
What is the difference between a Turing machine and the modern computer?
It's the same as that between Hillary's ascent of Everest and the
establishment of a Hilton on its peak.
        "What's that thing?"
        "Well, it's a highly technical, sensitive instrument we use in
computer repair.  Being a layman, you probably can't grasp exactly what
it does.  We call it a two-by-four."
                -- Jeff MacNelley, "Shoe"
When Dexter's on the Internet, can Hell be far behind?"
Windows 3.1 Beer: The world's most popular. Comes in a 16-oz. can that
looks a lot like Mac Beer's. Requires that you already own a DOS Beer.  
Claims that it allows you to drink several DOS Beers simultaneously, but
in reality you can only drink a few of them, very slowly, especially
slowly if you are drinking the Windows Beer at the same time.  Sometimes,
for apparently no reason, a can of Windows Beer will explode when you
open it.
Windows 95 Beer: A lot of people have taste-tested it and claim it's
wonderful. The can looks a lot like Mac Beer's can, but tastes more like
Windows 3.1 Beer. It comes in 32-oz.  cans, but when you look inside, the
cans only have 16 oz. of beer in them. Most people will probably keep
drinking Windows 3.1 Beer until their friends try Windows 95 Beer and say
they like it. The ingredients list, when you look at the small print, has
some of the same ingredients that come in DOS beer, even though the
manufacturer claims that this is an entirely new brew.
Windows NT Beer: Comes in 32-oz. cans, but you can only buy it by the
truckload. This causes most people to have to go out and buy bigger
refrigerators. The can looks just like Windows 3.1 Beer's, but the
company promises to change the can to look just like Windows 95 Beer's --
after Windows 95 beer starts shipping. Touted as an "industrial strength"
beer, and suggested only for use in bars.
Work continues in this area.
                -- DEC's SPR-Answering-Automaton
Writers who use a computer swear to its liberating power in tones that bear
witness to the apocalyptic power of a new divinity.  Their conviction results
from something deeper than mere gratitude for the computer's conveniences.
Every new medium of writing brings about new intensities of religious belief
and new schisms among believers.  In the 16th century the printed book helped
make possible the split between Catholics and Protestants.  In the 20th
century this history of tragedy and triumph is repeating itself as a farce.
Those who worship the Apple computer and those who put their faith in the IBM
PC are equally convinced that the other camp is damned or deluded.  Each cult
holds in contempt the rituals and the laws of the other.  Each thinks that it
is itself the one hope for salvation.
                -- Edward Mendelson, "The New Republic", February 22, 1988
X windows:
        Accept any substitute.
        If it's broke, don't fix it.
        If it ain't broke, fix it.
        Form follows malfunction.
        The Cutting Edge of Obsolescence.
        The trailing edge of software technology.
        Armageddon never looked so good.
        Japan's secret weapon.
        You'll envy the dead.
        Making the world safe for competing window systems.
        Let it get in YOUR way.
        The problem for your problem.
        If it starts working, we'll fix it.  Pronto.
        It could be worse, but it'll take time.
        Simplicity made complex.
        The greatest productivity aid since typhoid.
        Flakey and built to stay that way.

One thousand monkeys.  One thousand MicroVAXes.  One thousand years.
        X windows.
X windows:
        It's not how slow you make it.  It's how you make it slow.
        The windowing system preferred by masochists 3 to 1.
        Built to take on the world... and lose!
        Don't try it 'til you've knocked it.
        Power tools for Power Fools.
        Putting new limits on productivity.
        The closer you look, the cruftier we look.
        Design by counterexample.
        A new level of software disintegration.
        No hardware is safe.
        Do your time.
        Rationalization, not realization.
        Old-world software cruftsmanship at its finest.
        Gratuitous incompatibility.
        Your mother.
        THE user interference management system.
        You can't argue with failure.
        You haven't died 'til you've used it.

The environment of today... tomorrow!
        X windows.
X windows:
        We will dump no core before its time.
        One good crash deserves another.
        A bad idea whose time has come.  And gone.
        We make excuses.
        It didn't even look good on paper.
        You laugh now, but you'll be laughing harder later!
        A new concept in abuser interfaces.
        How can something get so bad, so quickly?
        It could happen to you.
        The art of incompetence.
        You have nothing to lose but your lunch.
        When uselessness just isn't enough.
        More than a mere hindrance.  It's a whole new barrier!
        When you can't afford to be right.
        And you thought we couldn't make it worse.

If it works, it isn't X windows.
X windows:
        You'd better sit down.
        Don't laugh.  It could be YOUR thesis project.
        Why do it right when you can do it wrong?
        Live the nightmare.
        Our bugs run faster.
        When it absolutely, positively HAS to crash overnight.
        There ARE no rules.
        You'll wish we were kidding.
        Everything you never wanted in a window system.  And more.
        Dissatisfaction guaranteed.
        There's got to be a better way.
        The next best thing to keypunching.
        Leave the thrashing to us.
        We wrote the book on core dumps.
        Even your dog won't like it.
        More than enough rope.
        Garbage at your fingertips.

Incompatibility.  Shoddiness.  Uselessness.
        X windows.
"Yacc" owes much to a most stimulating collection of users, who have
goaded me beyond my inclination, and frequently beyond my ability in
their endless search for "one more feature."  Their irritating
unwillingness to learn how to do things my way has usually led to my
doing things their way; most of the time, they have been right.
                -- S. C. Johnson, "Yacc guide acknowledgements"
You are transported to a room where you are faced by a wizard who
points to you and says, "Them's fighting words!"  You immediately get
attacked by all sorts of denizens of the museum: there is a cobra
chewing on your leg, a troglodyte is bashing your brains out with a
gold nugget, a crocodile is removing large chunks of flesh from you, a
rhinoceros is goring you with his horn, a sabre-tooth cat is busy
trying to disembowel you, you are being trampled by a large mammoth, a
vampire is sucking you dry, a Tyrannosaurus Rex is sinking his six inch
long fangs into various parts of your anatomy, a large bear is
dismembering your body, a gargoyle is bouncing up and down on your
head, a burly troll is tearing you limb from limb, several dire wolves
are making mince meat out of your torso, and the wizard is about to
transport you to the corner of Westwood and Broxton.  Oh dear, you seem
to have gotten yourself killed, as well.

You scored 0 out of 250 possible points.
That gives you a ranking of junior beginning adventurer.
To achieve the next higher rating, you need to score 32 more points.
You can measure a programmer's perspective by noting his attitude on
the continuing viability of FORTRAN.
                -- Alan Perlis
You know you've been sitting in front of your Lisp machine too long
when you go out to the junk food machine and start wondering how to
make it give you the CADR of Item H so you can get that yummie
chocolate cupcake that's stuck behind the disgusting vanilla one.
You know, Callahan's is a peaceable bar, but if you ask that dog what his
favorite formatter is, and he says "roff! roff!", well, I'll just have to...
You're at Witt's End.
As seen on slashdot about what you can do with your cable modems:
(http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=32387&cid=3495418):

        Summary: It's not about how you handle your equipment, it's where
        you have permission to stick it.

The post is by "redgekko"
"Don't fear the pen. When in doubt, draw a pretty picture."
   --Baker's Third Law of Design.
        A boy spent years collecting postage stamps.  The girl next door bought
an album too, and started her own collection.  "Dad, she buys everything I've
bought, and it's taken all the fun out of it for me.  I'm quitting."  Don't,
son, remember, 'Imitation is the sincerest form of philately.'"
A chicken is an egg's way of producing more eggs.
A homeowner's reach should exceed his grasp, or what's a weekend for?
A journey of a thousand miles starts under one's feet.
                -- Lao Tsu
A king's castle is his home.
A man's best friend is his dogma.
A man's house is his castle.
                -- Sir Edward Coke
A man's house is his hassle.
A witty saying proves nothing, but saying something pointless gets
people's attention.
Absolutum obsoletum.  (If it works, it's out of date.)
                -- Stafford Beer
All's well that ends.
Any road followed to its end leads precisely nowhere.
Climb the mountain just a little to test it's a mountain.
From the top of the mountain, you cannot see the mountain.
                -- Bene Gesserit proverb, "Dune"
Anything is possible, unless it's not.
Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum --
"I think that I think, therefore I think that I am."
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Honesty's the best policy.
                -- Miguel de Cervantes
How sharper than a hound's tooth it is to have a thankless serpent.
If the shoe fits, it's ugly.
It is your concern when your neighbor's wall is on fire.
                -- Quintus Horatius Flaccus (Horace)
It's always darkest just before it gets pitch black.
It's always darkest just before the lights go out.
                -- Alex Clark
It's better to burn out than it is to rust.
It's better to burn out than to fade away.
It's later than you think.
It's not whether you win or lose, it's how you place the blame.
It's the thought, if any, that counts!
-- Male cadavers are incapable of yielding testimony.
-- Individuals who make their abode in vitreous edifices would be well advised
        to refrain from catapulting projectiles.
-- Neophyte's serendipity.
-- Exclusive dedication to necessitious chores without interludes of hedonistic
        diversion renders John a hebetudinous fellow.
-- A revolving concretion of earthy or mineral matter accumulates no congeries
        of small, green bryophytic plant.
-- Abstention from any aleatory undertaking precludes a potential escallation
        of a lucrative nature.
-- Missiles of ligneous or osteal consistency have the potential of fracturing
        osseous structure, but appellations will eternally remain innocuous.
Mum's the word.
                -- Miguel de Cervantes
-- Neophyte's serendipity.
-- Exclusive dedication to necessitious chores without interludes of
        hedonistic diversion renders John a hebetudinous fellow.
-- A revolving concretion of earthy or mineral matter accumulates no
        congeries of small, green bryophytic plant.
-- The person presenting the ultimate cachinnation possesses thereby the
        optimal cachinnation.
-- Abstention from any aleatory undertaking precludes a potential
        escallation of a lucrative nature.
-- Missiles of ligneous or osteal consistency have the potential of
        fracturing osseous structure, but appellations will eternally
        remain innocuous.
One man's Mede is another man's Persian.
                -- George M. Cohan
Removing the straw that broke the camel's back does not necessarily
allow the camel to walk again.
Small change can often be found under seat cushions.
                -- One of Lazarus Long's most penetrating insights
Small is beautiful.
                -- Schumacher's Dictum
The greatest love is a mother's, then a dog's, then a sweetheart's.
                -- Polish proverb
The man who sees, on New Year's day, Mount Fuji, a hawk, and an eggplant
is forever blessed.
                -- Old Japanese proverb
The meek will inherit the earth -- if that's OK with you.
There's an old proverb that says just about whatever you want it to.
There's no heavier burden than a great potential.
There's no such thing as a free lunch.
                -- Milton Friendman
There's no such thing as an original sin.
                -- Elvis Costello
There's no time like the pleasant.
Truth can wait; he's used to it.
We have seen the light at the end of the tunnel, and it's out.
When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson
While there's life, there's hope.
                -- Publius Terentius Afer (Terence)
Zhizn' prozhit'--ne pole pereiti.
        [Life's a bitch.]
        [Well, okay.  lit., to live through life is not as simple as crossing
         a field.  Happy now?]
                -- Russian proverb
And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that
cometh out of man, in their sight...Then he [the Lord!] said unto me, Lo, I
have given thee cow's dung for man's dung, and thou shalt prepare thy bread
therewith.
[Ezek. 4:12-15 (KJV)]
How beautiful are thy feet with shoes, O prince's daughter! the joints of thy
thighs are like jewels, the work of the hands of a cunning workman.  Thy navel
is like a round goblet, which wanteth not liquor:  thy belly is like an heap
of wheat set about with lillies.
Thy two breasts are like two young roses that are twins.
[Song of Solomon 7:1-3 (KJV)]
In the beginning, I was made.  I didn't ask to be made.  No one consulted
with me or considered my feelings in this matter.  But if it brought some
passing fancy to some lowly humans as they haphazardly pranced their way
through life's mournful jungle, then so be it.
- Marvin the Paranoid Android, From Douglas Adams' Hitchiker's Guide to the
Galaxy Radio Scripts
That's the thing about people who think they hate computers.  What they
really hate is lousy programmers.
- Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle in "Oath of Fealty"
No one is fit to be trusted with power. ... No one. ... Any man who has lived
at all knows the follies and wickedness he's capabe of. ... And if he does
know it, he knows also that neither he nor any man ought to be allowed to
decide a single human fate.
- C. P. Snow, The Light and the Dark
The computer can't tell you the emotional story.  It can give you the exact
mathematical design, but what's missing is the eyebrows.
- Frank Zappa
After Goliath's defeat, giants ceased to command respect.
- Freeman Dyson
"It was the Law of the Sea, they said.        Civilization ends at the waterline.
Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top."
- Hunter S. Thompson
The so-called "desktop metaphor" of today's workstations is instead an
"airplane-seat" metaphor.  Anyone who has shuffled a lap full of papers while
seated between two portly passengers will recognize the difference -- one can
see only a very few things at once.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
Bingo, gas station, hamburger with a side order of airplane noise,
and you'll be Gary, Indiana. - Jessie in the movie "Greaser's Palace"
"Any medium powerful enough to extend man's reach is powerful enough to topple
his world.  To get the medium's magic to work for one's aims rather than
against them is to attain literacy."
-- Alan Kay, "Computer Software", Scientific American, September 1984
"I hate the itching.  But I don't mind the swelling."
-- new buzz phrase, like "Where's the Beef?" that David Letterman's trying
   to get everyone to start saying
"Oh dear, I think you'll find reality's on the blink again."
-- Marvin The Paranoid Android
"In the face of entropy and nothingness, you kind of have to pretend it's not
there if you want to keep writing good code."  -- Karl Lehenbauer
"Can you program?"  "Well, I'm literate, if that's what you mean!"
"It's like deja vu all over again."   -- Yogi Berra
"Where shall I begin, please your Majesty?" he asked.  "Begin at the beginning,"
the King said, gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop."
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Obviously, a man's judgement cannot be better than the information on which he
has based it.  Give him the truth and he may still go wrong when he has
the chance to be right, but give him no news or present him only with distorted
and incomplete data, with ignorant, sloppy or biased reporting, with propaganda
and deliberate falsehoods, and you destroy his whole reasoning processes, and
make him something less than a man.
-- Arthur Hays Sulzberger
It's currently a problem of access to gigabits through punybaud.
-- J. C. R. Licklider
A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you.
-- Ramsey Clark
How many hardware guys does it take to change a light bulb?

"Well the diagnostics say it's fine buddy, so it's a software problem."
"Don't try to outweird me, three-eyes.  I get stranger things than you free
with my breakfast cereal."
- Zaphod Beeblebrox in "Hithiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
"This isn't brain surgery; it's just television."
- David Letterman
Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend.  Inside of a dog, it is too
dark to read.
186,000 Miles per Second.  It's not just a good idea.  IT'S THE LAW.
By one count there are some 700 scientists with respectable academic credentials
(out of a total of 480,000 U.S. earth and life scientists) who give credence
to creation-science, the general theory that complex life forms did not evolve
but appeared "abruptly."
- Newsweek, June 29, 1987, pg. 23
How many NASA managers does it take to screw in a lightbulb?

"That's a known problem... don't worry about it."
People think my friend George is weird because he wears sideburns...behind his
ears.  I think he's weird because he wears false teeth...with braces on them.
-- Steven Wright
You know that feeling when you're leaning back on a stool and it starts to tip
over?  Well, that's how I feel all the time.
-- Steven Wright
I believe that part of what propels science is the thirst for wonder.  It's a
very powerful emotion.  All children feel it.  In a first grade classroom
everybody feels it; in a twelfth grade classroom almost nobody feels it, or
at least acknowledges it.  Something happens between first and twelfth grade,
and it's not just puberty.  Not only do the schools and the media not teach
much skepticism, there is also little encouragement of this stirring sense
of wonder.  Science and pseudoscience both arouse that feeling.  Poor
popularizations of science establish an ecological niche for pseudoscience.
- Carl Sagan, The Burden Of Skepticism, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 12, Fall 87
If science were explained to the average person in a way that is accessible
and exciting, there would be no room for pseudoscience.  But there is a kind
of Gresham's Law by which in popular culture the bad science drives out the
good.  And for this I think we have to blame, first, the scientific community
ourselves for not doing a better job of popularizing science, and second, the
media, which are in this respect almost uniformly dreadful.  Every newspaper
in America has a daily astrology column.  How many have even a weekly
astronomy column?  And I believe it is also the fault of the educational
system.  We do not teach how to think.  This is a very serious failure that
may even, in a world rigged with 60,000 nuclear weapons, compromise the human
future.
- Carl Sagan, The Burden Of Skepticism, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 12, Fall 87
I'm often asked the question, "Do you think there is extraterrestrial intelli-
gence?"  I give the standard arguments -- there are a lot of places out there,
and use the word *billions*, and so on.  And then I say it would be astonishing
to me if there weren't extraterrestrial intelligence, but of course there is as
yet no compelling evidence for it.  And then I'm asked, "Yeah, but what do you
really think?"  I say, "I just told you what I really think."  "Yeah, but
what's your gut feeling?"  But I try not to think with my gut.  Really, it's
okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in.
- Carl Sagan, The Burden Of Skepticism, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. 12, Fall 87
If it's working, the diagnostics say it's fine.
If it's not working, the diagnostics say it's fine.
- A proposed addition to rules for realtime programming
I believe that if people would learn to use LSD's vision-inducing capability
more wisely, under suitable conditions, in medical practice and in conjution
with meditation, then in the future this problem child could become a wonder
child.
- Dr. Albert Hoffman, the discoverer of LSD
Harrison's Postulate:
        For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
Mr. Cole's Axiom:
        The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant;
        the population is growing.
Felson's Law:
        To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism; to steal from
        many is research.
"I say we take off; nuke the site from orbit.  It's the only way to be sure."
- Corporal Hicks, in "Aliens"
"Largely because it is so tangible and exciting a program and as such will
serve to keep alive the interest and enthusiasm of the whole spectrum of
society...It is justified because...the program can give a sense of shared
adventure and achievement to the society at large."
- Dr. Colin S. Pittendrigh, in "The History of Manned Space Flight"
Life's the same, except for the shoes.
- The Cars
Could be you're crossing the fine line
A silly driver kind of...off the wall

You keep it cool when it's t-t-tight
...eyes wide open when you start to fall.
- The Cars
And the crowd was stilled.  One elderly man, wondering at the sudden silence,
turned to the Child and asked him to repeat what he had said.  Wide-eyed,
the Child raised his voice and said once again, "Why, the Emperor has no
clothes!  He is naked!"
- "The Emperor's New Clothes"
"Unibus timeout fatal trap program lost sorry"
- An error message printed by DEC's RSTS operating system for the PDP-11
I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute --
where no Catholic prelate would tell the president (should he be Catholic)
how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishoners for whom
to vote--where no church or church school is granted any public funds or
political preference--and where no man is denied public office merely
because his religion differs from the president who might appoint him or the
people who might elect him.
- from John F. Kennedy's address to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association
  September 12, 1960.
"If you'll excuse me a minute, I'm going to have a cup of coffee."
- broadcast from Apollo 11's LEM, "Eagle", to Johnson Space Center, Houston
  July 20, 1969, 7:27 P.M.
   On Krat's main screen appeared the holo image of a man, and several dolphins.
From the man's shape, Krat could tell it was a female, probably their leader.
   "...stupid creatures unworthy of the name `sophonts.'  Foolish, pre-sentient
upspring of errant masters.  We slip away from all your armed might, laughing
at your clumsiness!  We slip away as we always will, you pathetic creatures.
And now that we have a real head start, you'll never catch us!  What better
proof that the Progenitors favor not you, but us!  What better proof..."
   The taunt went on.  Krat listened, enraged, yet at the same time savoring
the artistry of it.  These men are better than I'd thought.  Their insults
are wordy and overblown, but they have talent.  They deserve honorable, slow
deaths.
- David Brin, Startide Rising
Yes, many primitive people still believe this myth...But in today's technical
vastness of the future, we can guess that surely things were much different.
- The Firesign Theater
"You know why there are so few sophisticated computer terrorists in the United
States?  Because your hackers have so much mobility into the establishment.
Here, there is no such mobility.  If you have the slightest bit of intellectual
integrity you cannot support the government.... That's why the best computer
minds belong to the opposition."
- an anonymous member of the outlawed Polish trade union, Solidarity
He's dead, Jim.
Remember, there's a big difference between kneeling down and bending over.
- Frank Zappa
One may be able to quibble about the quality of a single experiment, or
about the veracity of a given experimenter, but, taking all the supportive
experiments together, the weight of evidence is so strong as readily to
merit a wise man's reflection.
- Professor William Tiller, parapsychologist, Standford University,
  commenting on psi research
"Once he had one leg in the White House and the nation trembled under his
roars.  Now he is a tinpot pope in the Coca-Cola belt and a brother to the
forlorn pastors who belabor halfwits in galvanized iron tabernacles behind
the railroad yards."
- H. L. Mencken, writing of William Jennings Bryan, counsel for the supporters
  of Tennessee's anti-evolution law at the Scopes "Monkey Trial" in 1925.
...we must counterpose the overwhelming judgment provided by consistent
observations and inferences by the thousands.  The earth is billions of
years old and its living creatures are linked by ties of evolutionary
descent.  Scientists stand accused of promoting dogma by so stating, but
do we brand people illiberal when they proclaim that the earth is neither
flat nor at the center of the universe?  Science *has* taught us some
things with confidence!  Evolution on an ancient earth is as well
established as our planet's shape and position.  Our continuing struggle
to understand how evolution happens (the "theory of evolution") does not
cast our documentation of its occurrence -- the "fact of evolution" --
into doubt.
- Stephen Jay Gould, "The Verdict on Creationism", The Skeptical Inquirer,
  Vol XII No. 2
... Fortunately, the responsibility for providing evidence is on the part of
the person making the claim, not the critic.  It is not the responsibility
of UFO skeptics to prove that a UFO has never existed, nor is it the
responsibility of paranormal-health-claims skeptics to prove that crystals
or colored lights never healed anyone.  The skeptic's role is to point out
claims that are not adequately supported by acceptable evidcence and to
provide plausible alternative explanations that are more in keeping with
the accepted body of scientific evidence. ...
- Thomas L. Creed, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. XII No. 2, pg. 215
I am here by the will of the people and I won't leave until I get my raincoat
back.
- a slogan of the anarchists in Richard Kadrey's "Metrophage"
Mike's Law:
For a lumber company employing two men and a cut-off saw, the
marginal product of labor for any number of additional workers
equals zero until the acquisition of another cut-off saw.
Let's not even consider a chainsaw.
- Mike Dennison
[You could always schedule the saw, though - ed.]
A lot of the stuff I do is so minimal, and it's designed to be minimal.
The smallness of it is what's attractive.  It's weird, 'cause it's so
intellectually lame.  It's hard to see me doing that for the rest of
my life.  But at the same time, it's what I do best.
- Chris Elliot, writer and performer on "Late Night with David Letterman"
e-credibility: the non-guaranteeable likelihood that the electronic data
you're seeing is genuine rather than somebody's made-up crap.
- Karl Lehenbauer
Why, when no honest man will deny in private that every ultimate problem is
wrapped in the profoundest mystery, do honest men proclaim in pulpits
that unhesitating certainty is the duty of the most foolish and ignorant?
Is it not a spectacle to make the angels laugh?  We are a company of
ignorant beings, feeling our way through mists and darkness, learning only
be incessantly repeated blunders, obtaining a glimmering of truth by
falling into every conceivable error, dimly discerning light enough for
our daily needs, but hopelessly differing whenever we attempt to describe
the ultimate origin or end of our paths; and yet, when one of us ventures
to declare that we don't know the map of the universe as well as the map
of our infintesimal parish, he is hooted, reviled, and perhaps told that
he will be damned to all eternity for his faithlessness...
- Leslie Stephen, "An agnostic's Apology", Fortnightly Review, 1876
Till then we shall be content to admit openly, what you (religionists)
whisper under your breath or hide in technical jargon, that the ancient
secret is a secret still; that man knows nothing of the Infinite and
Absolute; and that, knowing nothing, he had better not be dogmatic about
his ignorance.  And, meanwhile, we will endeavour to be as charitable as
possible, and whilst you trumpet forth officially your contempt for our
skepticism, we will at least try to believe that you are imposed upon
by your own bluster.
- Leslie Stephen, "An agnostic's Apology", Fortnightly Review, 1876
What is tolerance? -- it is the consequence of humanity.  We are all formed
of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other's folly --
that is the first law of nature.
- Voltaire
However, on religious issures there can be little or no compromise.
There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious
beliefs.  There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than
Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being.
But like any powerful weapon, the use of God's name on one's behalf
should be used sparingly.  The religious factions that are growing
throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom.
They are trying to force government leaders into following their position
100 percent.  If you disagree with these religious groups on a
particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of
money or votes or both.  I'm frankly sick and tired of the political
preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be
a moral person, I must believe in "A," "B," "C," and "D."  Just who do
they think they are?  And from where do they presume to claim the
right to dictate their moral beliefs to me?  And I am even more angry as
a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who
thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll
call in the Senate.  I am warning them today:  I will fight them every
step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all
Americans in the name of "conservatism."
- Senator Barry Goldwater, from the Congressional Record, September 16, 1981
"I think every good Christian ought to kick Falwell's ass."
- Senator Barry Goldwater, when asked what he thought of Jerry Falwell's
suggestion that all good Christians should be against Sandra Day O'Connor's
nomination to the Supreme Court
As I argued in "Beloved Son", a book about my son Brian and the subject
of religious communes and cults, one result of proper early instruction
in the methods of rational thought will be to make sudden mindless
conversions -- to anything -- less likely.  Brian now realizes this and
has, after eleven years, left the sect he was associated with.  The
problem is that once the untrained mind has made a formal commitment to
a religious philosophy -- and it does not matter whether that philosophy
is generally reasonable and high-minded or utterly bizarre and
irrational -- the powers of reason are suprisingly ineffective in
changing the believer's mind.
- Steve Allen, comdeian, from an essay in the book "The Courage of
  Conviction", edited by Philip Berman
"Well, you see, it's such a transitional creature.  It's a piss-poor
reptile and not very much of a bird."
- Melvin Konner, from "The Tangled Wing", quoting a zoologist who has
studied the archeopteryz and found it "very much like people"
"It is better to have tried and failed than to have failed to try, but
the result's the same."
- Mike Dennison
Thufir's a Harkonnen now.
"By long-standing tradition, I take this opportunity to savage other
designers in the thin disguise of good, clean fun."
-- P. J. Plauger, from his April Fool's column in April 88's "Computer Language"
Parkinson's Law:  Work expands to fill the time alloted it.
Karl's version of Parkinson's Law:  Work expands to exceed the time alloted it.
"Now here's something you're really going to like!"
-- Rocket J. Squirrel
"I've seen it.  It's rubbish."
-- Marvin the Paranoid Android
"I think Michael is like litmus paper - he's always trying to learn."
-- Elizabeth Taylor, absurd non-sequitir about Michael Jackson
"A verbal contract isn't worth the paper it's printed on."
- Samuel Goldwyn
What's the difference between a computer salesman and a used car salesman?

A used car salesman knows when he's lying.
"The best index to a person's character is a) how he treats people who can't
do him any good and b) how he treats people who can't fight back."
-- Abigail Van Buren
"I've got some amyls.  We could either party later or, like, start his heart."
-- "Cheech and Chong's Next Movie"
"Roman Polanski makes his own blood.  He's smart -- that's why his movies work."
-- A brilliant director at "Frank's Place"
"Ever free-climbed a thousand foot vertical cliff with 60 pounds of gear
strapped to your butt?"
   "No."
"'Course you haven't, you fruit-loop little geek."
-- The Mountain Man, one of Dana Carvey's SNL characters
[ditto]
It's great to be smart 'cause then you know stuff.
"Someone's been mean to you! Tell me who it is, so I can punch him tastefully."
-- Ralph Bakshi's Mighty Mouse
"And kids... learn something from Susie and Eddie.
If you think there's a maniacal psycho-geek in the
basement:
    1)        Don't give him a chance to hit you on the
        head with an axe!
    2)        Flee the premises... even if you're in your
        underwear.
    3)        Warn the neighbors and call the police.
But whatever else you do... DON'T GO DOWN IN THE DAMN BASEMENT!"
-- Saturday Night Live meets Friday the 13th
"It's curtains for you, Mighty Mouse!  This gun is so futuristic that even
*I* don't know how it works!"
-- from Ralph Bakshi's Mighty Mouse
   "Daddy, Daddy, make
    Santa Claus go away!"
                       "I can't, son;
                        he's grown too
                        powerful."
                                     "HO HO HO!"
-- Duck's Breath Mystery Theatre
"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!"
-- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"
"Remember kids, if there's a loaded gun in the room, be sure that you're the
one holding it"
-- Captain Combat
"It's the best thing since professional golfers on 'ludes."
-- Rick Obidiah
"If you took everyone who's ever been to a Dead
show, and lined them up, they'd stretch halfway to
the moon and back... and none of them would be
complaining."
-- a local Deadhead in the Seattle Times
Why are many scientists using lawyers for medical
experiments instead of rats?

        a)  There are more lawyers than rats.
        b)  The scientist's don't become as
             emotionally attached to them.
        c)  There are some things that even rats
            won't do for money.
Pohl's law:
         Nothing is so good that somebody, somewhere, will not hate it.
"There's only one way to have a happy marriage and as soon as I learn what it
is I'll get married again."
-- Clint Eastwood
Q:  How many IBM CPU's does it take to execute a job?
A:  Four; three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.
Harrisberger's Fourth Law of the Lab:
        Experience is directly proportional to the
        amount of equipment ruined.
Captain Penny's Law:
        You can fool all of the people some of the
        time, and some of the people all of the
        time, but you can't fool mom.
"Because he's a character who's looking for his own identity, [He-Man is]
an interesting role for an actor."
-- Dolph Lundgren, "actor"
"If Jesus came back today, and saw what was going on in his name, he'd never
stop throwing up."
-- Max Von Sydow's character in "Hannah and Her Sisters"
"Nietzsche says that we will live the same life, over and over again.  
God -- I'll have to sit through the Ice Capades again."
-- Woody Allen's character in "Hannah and Her Sisters"
"In regards to Oral Roberts' claim that God told him that he would die unless he
received $20 million by March, God's lawyers have stated that their client has
not spoken with Roberts for several years.  Off the record, God has stated that
"If I had wanted to ice the little toad, I would have done it a long time ago."
-- Dennis Miller, SNL News
"I distrust a man who says 'when.'  If he's got to be careful not to drink too
much, it's because he's not to be trusted when he does."
-- Sidney Greenstreet, _The Maltese Falcon_
"I distrust a close-mouthed man.  He generally picks the wrong time to talk
and says the wrong things.  Talking's something you can't do judiciously,
unless you keep in practice.  Now, sir, we'll talk if you like.        I'll tell
you right out, I'm a man who likes talking to a man who likes to talk."
-- Sidney Greenstreet, _The Maltese Falcon_
"The picture's pretty bleak, gentlemen...  The world's climates are changing,
the mammals are taking over, and we all have a brain about the size of a
walnut."
-- some dinosaurs from The Far Side, by Gary Larson
"Hi.  This is Dan Cassidy's answering machine.  Please leave your name and
number... and after I've doctored the tape, your message will implicate you
in a federal crime and be brought to the attention of the F.B.I... BEEEP"
-- Blue Devil comics
"All God's children are not beautiful.        Most of God's children are, in fact,
barely presentable."
-- Fran Lebowitz
David Letterman's "Things we can be proud of as Americans":
        * Greatest number of citizens who have actually boarded a UFO
        * Many newspapers feature "JUMBLE"
        * Hourly motel rates
        * Vast majority of Elvis movies made here
        * Didn't just give up right away during World War II like some
            countries we could mention
        * Goatees & Van Dykes thought to be worn only by weenies
        * Our well-behaved golf professionals
        * Fabulous babes coast to coast
"Danger, you haven't seen the last of me!"
   "No, but the first of you turns my stomach!"
-- The Firesign Theatre's Nick Danger
"Don't worry about people stealing your ideas.         If your ideas are any good,
you'll have to ram them down people's throats."
-- Howard Aiken
"It's a dog-eat-dog world out there, and I'm wearing Milkbone underware."
-- Norm, from _Cheers_
"Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit, Kill the Wabbit!"
-- Looney Tunes, "What's Opera Doc?" (1957, Chuck Jones)
"You show me an American who can keep his mouth shut and I'll eat him."
-- Newspaperman from Frank Capra's _Meet_John_Doe_
        "And we heard him exclaim
         As he started to roam:
         `I'm a hologram, kids,
          please don't try this at home!'"
        -- Bob Violence
-- Howie Chaykin's little animated 3-dimensional darling, Bob Violence
"The Soviet Union, which has complained recently about alleged anti-Soviet
themes in American advertising, lodged an official protest this week against
the Ford Motor Company's new campaign: `Hey you stinking fat Russian, get
off my Ford Escort.'"
-- Dennis Miller, Saturday Night Live
"It's ten o'clock... Do you know where your AI programs are?"  -- Peter Oakley
"Ah, you know the type.         They like to blame it all on the Jews or the Blacks,
'cause if they couldn't, they'd have to wake up to the fact that life's one big,
scary, glorious, complex and ultimately unfathomable crapshoot -- and the only
reason THEY can't seem to keep up is they're a bunch of misfits and losers."
-- an analysis of neo-Nazis and such, Badger comics
"Tourists -- have some fun with New york's hard-boiled cabbies.  When you get
to your destination, say to your driver, "Pay?        I was hitchhiking."
-- David Letterman
"When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro..."
-- Hunter S. Thompson
"There... I've run rings 'round you logically"
-- Monty Python's Flying Circus
"Let's show this prehistoric bitch how we do things downtown!"
-- The Ghostbusters
Absolute:  Independent, irresponsible.  An absolute monarchy is one in which
the sovereign does as he pleases so long as he pleases the assassins.  Not
many absolute monarchies are left, most of them having been replaced by
limited monarchies, where the soverign's power for evil (and for good) is
greatly curtailed, and by republics, which are governed by chance.
-- Ambrose Bierce
Alliance:  In international politics, the union of two thieves who have their
hands so deeply inserted in each other's pocket that they cannot separately
plunder a third.
-- Ambrose Bierce
"Today's robots are very primitive, capable of understanding only a few
simple instructions such as 'go left', 'go right', and 'build car'."
--John Sladek
Here is an Appalachian version of management's answer to those who are
concerned with the fate of the project:
"Don't worry about the mule.  Just load the wagon."
-- Mike Dennison's hillbilly uncle
"Here comes Mr. Bill's dog."
-- Narrator, Saturday Night Live
Sex is like air.  It's only a big deal if you can't get any.
  "Emergency!"  Sgiggs screamed, ejecting himself from the tub like it was
a burning car.  "Dial 'one'!  Get room service!  Code red!"  Stiggs was on
the phone immediately, ordering more rose blossoms, because, according to
him, the ones floating in the tub had suddenly lost their smell.  "I demand
smell," he shrilled.  "I expecting total uninterrupted smell from these
f*cking roses."

  Unfortunately, the service captain didn't realize that the Stiggs situation
involved fifty roses.  "What am I going to do with this?" Stiggs sneered at
the weaseling hotel goon when he appeared at our door holding a single flower
floating in a brandy glass.  Stiggs's tirade was great.  "Do you see this
bathtub?  Do you notice any difference between the size of the tub and the
size of that spindly wad of petals in your hand?  I need total bath coverage.
I need a completely solid layer of roses all around me like puffing factories
of smell, attacking me with their smell and power-ramming big stinking
concentrations of rose odor up my nostrils until I'm wasted with pleasure."
It wasn't long before we got so dissatisfied with this incompetence that we
bolted.
-- The Utterly Monstrous, Mind-Roasting Summer of O.C. and Stiggs,
   National Lampoon, October 1982
When it is incorrect, it is, at least *authoritatively* incorrect.
-- Hitchiker's Guide To The Galaxy
We decided it was night again, so we camped for twenty minutes and drank
another six beers at a Young Life campsite.  O.C. got into the supervisory
adult's sleeping bag and ran around in it.  "This is the judgment day and I'm
a terrifying apparition," he screamed.  Then the heat made O.C. ralph in the
bag.
-- The Utterly Monstrous, Mind-Roasting Summer of O.C. and Stiggs,
   National Lampoon, October 1982
The F-15 Eagle:  
        If it's up, we'll shoot it down.  If it's down, we'll blow it up.
-- A McDonnel-Douglas ad from a few years ago
"It's my cookie file and if I come up with something that's lame and I like it,
it goes in."
-- karl (Karl Lehenbauer)
DE:  The Soviets seem to have difficulty implementing modern technology.
     Would you comment on that?

Belenko:  Well, let's talk about aircraft engine lifetime.  When I flew the
          MiG-25, its engines had a total lifetime of 250 hours.

DE:  Is that mean-time-between-failure?

Belenko:  No, the engine is finished; it is scrapped.

DE:  You mean they pull it out and throw it away, not even overhauling it?

Belenko:  That is correct.  Overhaul is too expensive.

DE:  That is absurdly low by free world standards.

Belenko:  I know.
-- an interview with Victor Belenko, MiG-25 fighter pilot who defected in 1976
   "Defense Electronics", Vol 20, No. 6, pg. 102
HP had a unique policy of allowing its engineers to take parts from stock as
long as they built something.  "They figured that with every design, they were
getting a better engineer.  It's a policy I urge all companies to adopt."
-- Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, "Will Wozniak's class give Apple to teacher?"
   EE Times, June 6, 1988, pg 45
"There's always been Tower of Babel sort of bickering inside Unix, but this
is the most extreme form ever.  This means at least several years of confusion."
-- Bill Gates, founder and chairman of Microsoft,
   about the Open Systems Foundation
"When in doubt, print 'em out."
-- Karl's Programming Proverb 0x7
"If you want the best things to happen in corporate life you have to find ways
to be hospitable to the unusual person.  You don't get innovation as a
democratic process.  You almost get it as an anti-democratic process.
Certainly you get it as an anthitetical process, so you have to have an
environment where the body of people are really amenable to change and can
deal with the conflicts that arise out of change an innovation."
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc.,  
   "Herman Miller's Secrets of Corporate Creativity",
   The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
"In corporate life, I think there are three important areas which contracts
can't deal with, the area of conflict, the area of change and area of reaching
potential.  To me a covenant is a relationship that is based on such things
as shared ideals and shared value systems and shared ideas and shared
agreement as to the processes we are going to use for working together.  In
many cases they develop into real love relationships."
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc., "Herman Miller's
   Secrets of Corporate Creativity", The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
Another goal is to establish a relationship "in which it is OK for everybody
to do their best.  There are an awful lot of people in management who really
don't want subordinates to do their best, because it gets to be very
threatening.  But we have found that both internally and with outside
designers if we are willing to have this kind of relationship and if we're
willing to be vulnerable to what will come out of it, we get really good
work."
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc., "Herman Miller's
   Secrets of Corporate Creativity", The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
In his book, Mr. DePree tells the story of how designer George Nelson urged
that the company also take on Charles Eames in the late 1940s.  Max's father,
J. DePree, co-founder of the company with herman Miller in 1923, asked Mr.
Nelson if he really wanted to share the limited opportunities of a then-small
company with another designer.  "George's response was something like this:
'Charles Eames is an unusual talent.  He is very different from me.  The
company needs us both.  I want very much to have Charles Eames share in
whatever potential there is.'"
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc., "Herman Miller's
   Secrets of Corporate Creativity", The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
Mr. DePree believes participative capitalism is the wave of the future.  The
U.S. work force, he believes, "more and more demands to be included in the
capitalist system and if we don't find ways to get the capitalist system
to be an inclusive system rather than the exclusive system it has been, we're
all in deep trouble.  If we don't find ways to begin to understand that
capitalism's highest potential lies in the common good, not in the individual
good, then we're risking the system itself."
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc., "Herman Miller's
   Secrets of Corporate Creativity", The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
Mr. DePree also expects a "tremendous social change" in all workplaces.  "When
I first started working 40 years ago, a factory supervisor was focused on the
product.  Today it is drastically different, because of the social milieu.
It isn't unusual for a worker to arrive on his shift and have some family
problem that he doesn't know how to resolve.  The example I like to use is a
guy who comes in and says 'this isn't going to be a good day for me, my son
is in jail on a drunk-driving charge and I don't know how to raise bail.'
What that means is that if the supervisor wants productivity, he has to know
how to raise bail."
-- Max DePree, chairman and CEO of Herman Miller Inc., "Herman Miller's
   Secrets of Corporate Creativity", The Wall Street Journal, May 3, 1988
Fools ignore complexity.  Pragmatists suffer it.
Some can avoid it.  Geniuses remove it.
-- Perlis's Programming Proverb #58, SIGPLAN Notices, Sept.  1982
An Animal that knows who it is, one that has a sense of his own identity, is
a discontented creature, doomed to create new problems for himself for the
duration of his stay on this planet.  Since neither the mouse nor the chimp
knows what is, he is spared all the vexing problems that follow this
discovery.  But as soon as the human animal who asked himself this question
emerged, he plunged himself and his descendants into an eternity of doubt
and brooding, speculation and truth-seeking that has goaded him through the
centures as reelentlessly as hunger or sexual longing.  The chimp that does
not know that he exists is not driven to discover his origins and is spared
the tragic necessity of contemplating his own end.  And even if the animal
experimenters succeed in teaching a chimp to count one hundred bananas or
to play chess, the chimp will develop no science and he will exhibit no
appreciation of beauty, for the greatest part of man's wisdom may be traced
back to the eternal questions of beginnings and endings, the quest to give
meaning to his existence, to life itself.
-- Selma Fraiberg, _The Magic Years_, pg. 193
A comment on schedules:
Ok, how long will it take?    
   For each manager involved in initial meetings add one month.
   For each manager who says "data flow analysis" add another month.
   For each unique end-user type add one month.
   For each unknown software package to be employed add two months.
   For each unknown hardware device add two months.
   For each 100 miles between developer and installation add one month.
   For each type of communication channel add one month.
   If an IBM mainframe shop is involved and you are working on a non-IBM
      system add 6 months.
   If an IBM mainframe shop is involved and you are working on an IBM
      system add 9 months.
Round up to the nearest half-year.
--Brad Sherman
By the way, ALL software projects are done by iterative prototyping.
Some companies call their prototypes "releases", that's all.
"Free markets select for winning solutions."
-- Eric S. Raymond
"I dislike companies that have a we-are-the-high-priests-of-hardware-so-you'll-
like-what-we-give-you attitude.  I like commodity markets in which iron-and-
silicon hawkers know that they exist to provide fast toys for software types
like me to play with..."
-- Eric S. Raymond
"A commercial, and in some respects a social, doubt has been started within the
last year or two, whether or not it is right to discuss so openly the security
or insecurity of locks.  Many well-meaning persons suppose that the discus-
sion respecting the means for baffling the supposed safety of locks offers a
premium for dishonesty, by showing others how to be dishonest.  This is a fal-
lacy.  Rogues are very keen in their profession, and already know much more
than we can teach them respecting their several kinds of roguery.  Rogues knew
a good deal about lockpicking long before locksmiths discussed it among them-
selves, as they have lately done.  If a lock -- let it have been made in what-
ever country, or by whatever maker -- is not so inviolable as it has hitherto
been deemed to be, surely it is in the interest of *honest* persons to know
this fact, because the *dishonest* are tolerably certain to be the first to
apply the knowledge practically; and the spread of knowledge is necessary to
give fair play to those who might suffer by ignorance.  It cannot be too ear-
nestly urged, that an acquaintance with real facts will, in the end, be better
for all parties."
-- Charles Tomlinson's Rudimentary Treatise on the Construction of Locks,
   published around 1850
In respect to lock-making, there can scarcely be such a thing as dishonesty
of intention: the inventor produces a lock which he honestly thinks will
possess such and such qualities; and he declares his belief to the world.
If others differ from him in opinion concerning those qualities, it is open
to them to say so; and the discussion, truthfully conducted, must lead to
public advantage: the discussion stimulates curiosity, and curiosity stimu-
lates invention.  Nothing but a partial and limited view of the question
could lead to the opinion that harm can result: if there be harm, it will be
much more than counterbalanced by good."
-- Charles Tomlinson's Rudimentary Treatise on the Construction of Locks,
   published around 1850.
"If a computer can't directly address all the RAM you can use, it's just a toy."
-- anonymous comp.sys.amiga posting, non-sequitir
First as to speech.  That privilege rests upon the premise that
there is no proposition so uniformly acknowledged that it may not be
lawfully challenged, questioned, and debated.  It need not rest upon
the further premise that there are no propositions that are not
open to doubt; it is enough, even if there are, that in the end it is
worse to suppress dissent than to run the risk of heresy.  Hence it
has been again and again unconditionally proclaimed that there are
no limits to the privilege so far as words seek to affect only the hearers'
beliefs and not their conduct.  The trouble is that conduct is almost
always based upon some belief, and that to change the hearer's belief
will generally to some extent change his conduct, and may even evoke
conduct that the law forbids.

[cf. Learned Hand, The Spirit of Liberty, University of Chicago Press, 1952;
The Art and Craft of Judging: The Decisions of Judge Learned Hand,
edited and annotated by Hershel Shanks, The MacMillian Company, 1968.]
"If that man in the PTL is such a healer, why can't he make his wife's
hairdo go down?"
-- Robin Williams
"What a wonder is USENET; such wholesale production of conjecture from
such a trifling investment in fact."
-- Carl S. Gutekunst
"The argument that the literal story of Genesis can qualify as science
collapses on three major grounds: the creationists' need to invoke
miracles in order to compress the events of the earth's history into
the biblical span of a few thousand years; their unwillingness to
abandon claims clearly disproved, including the assertion that all
fossils are products of Noah's flood; and their reliance upon distortion,
misquote, half-quote, and citation out of context to characterize the
ideas of their opponents."
-- Stephen Jay Gould, "The Verdict on Creationism",
   The Skeptical Inquirer, Winter 87/88, pg. 186
interlard - vt., to intersperse; diversify
-- Webster's New World Dictionary Of The American Language
"It might help if we ran the MBA's out of Washington."
-- Admiral Grace Hopper
The sprung doors parted and I staggered out into the lobby's teak and flicker.
Uniformed men stood by impassively like sentries in their trench.  I slapped
my key on the desk and nodded gravely.  I was loaded enough to be unable to
tell whether they could tell I was loaded.  Would they mind?  I was certainly
too loaded to care.  I moved to the door with boxy, schlep-shouldered strides.
-- Martin Amis, _Money_
I ask only one thing.  I'm understanding.  I'm mature.  And it isn't much to
ask.  I want to get back to London, and track her down, and be alone with my
Selina -- or not even alone, damn it, merely close to her, close enough to
smell her skin, to see the flecked webbing of her lemony eyes, the moulding
of her artful lips.  Just for a few precious seconds.  Just long enough to
put in one good, clean punch.  That's all I ask.
-- Martin Amis, _Money_
Now I was heading, in my hot cage, down towards meat-market country on the
tip of the West Village.  Here the redbrick warehouses double as carcass
galleries and rat hives, the Manhattan fauna seeking its necessary
level, living or dead.  Here too you find the heavy faggot hangouts,
The Spike, the Water Closet, the Mother Load.  Nobody knows what goes on
in these places.  Only the heavy faggots know.  Even Fielding seems somewhat
vague on the question.  You get zapped and flogged and dumped on -- by
almost anybody's standards, you have a really terrible time.  The average
patron arrives at the Spike in one taxi but needs to go back to his sock
in two.  And then the next night he shows up for more.  They shackle
themselves to racks, they bask in urinals.  Their folks have a lot of
explaining to do, if you want my opinion, particularly the mums.  Sorry
to single you ladies out like this but the story must start somewhere.  
A craving for hourly murder -- it can't be willed.  In the meantime,
Fielding tells me, Mother Nature looks on and taps her foot and clicks
her tongue.  Always a champion of monogamy, she is cooking up some fancy
new diseases.  She just isn't going to stand for it.
-- Martin Amis, _Money_
"Okay," Bobby said, getting the hang of it, "then what's the matrix?  If
she's a deck, and Danbala's a program, what's cyberspace?"
  "The world," Lucas said.
-- William Gibson, _Count Zero_
"It ain't so much the things we don't know that get us in trouble.  It's the
things we know that ain't so."
-- Artemus Ward aka Charles Farrar Brown
"The Avis WIZARD decides if you get to drive a car. Your head won't touch the
pillow of a Sheraton unless their computer says it's okay."
-- Arthur Miller
"They know your name, address, telephone number, credit card numbers, who ELSE
is driving the car "for insurance", ...  your driver's license number. In the
state of Massachusetts, this is the same number as that used for Social
Security, unless you object to such use. In THAT case, you are ASSIGNED a
number and you reside forever more on the list of "weird people who don't give
out their Social Security Number in Massachusetts."
-- Arthur Miller
"Although Poles suffer official censorship, a pervasive secret
police and laws similar to those in the USSR, there are
thousands of underground publications, a legal independent
Church, private agriculture, and the East bloc's first and only
independent trade union federation, NSZZ Solidarnosc, which is
an affiliate of both the International Confederation of Free
Trade Unions and the World Confederation of Labor.  There is
literally a world of difference between Poland - even in its
present state of collapse - and Soviet society at the peak of
its "glasnost."  This difference has been maintained at great
cost by the Poles since 1944.
-- David Phillips, SUNY at Buffalo, about establishing a
   gateway from EARN (Eurpoean Academic Research Network)
   to Poland
"Do not lose your knowledge that man's proper estate is an upright posture,
an intransigent mind, and a step that travels unlimited roads."
-- John Galt, in Ayn Rand's _Atlas Shrugged_
"Once they go up, who cares where they come down?  That's not my department."
-- Werner von Braun
"It's no sweat, Henry.  Russ made it back to Bugtown before he died.  So he'll
regenerate in a couple of days.  It's just awful sloppy of him to get killed in
the first place.  Humph!"
-- Ron Post, Post Brothers Comics
"We are not endeavoring to chain the future but to free the present. ... We are
the advocates of inquiry, investigation, and thought. ... It is grander to think
and investigate for yourself than to repeat a creed. ... I look for the day
when *reason*, throned upon the world's brains, shall be the King of Kings and
the God of Gods.
-- Robert G. Ingersoll
"Life sucks, but it's better than the alternative."
-- Peter da Silva
How many Unix hacks does it take to change a light bulb?
   Let's see, can you use a shell script for that or does it need a C program?
"The number of Unix installations has grown to 10, with more expected."
-- The Unix Programmer's Manual, 2nd Edition, June, 1972
--
-- uunet!sugar!karl  | "We've been following your progress with considerable
-- karl@sugar.uu.net |  interest, not to say contempt."  -- Zaphod Beeblebrox IV
-- Usenet BBS (713) 438-5018



th-th-th-th-That's all, folks!

----------- cut here, don't forget to strip junk at the end, too -------------
"Psychoanalysis??  I thought this was a nude rap session!!!"
-- Zippy
"There was no difference between the behavior of a god and the operations of
pure chance..."
-- Thomas Pynchon, _Gravity's Rainbow_
...Saure really turns out to be an adept at the difficult art of papryomancy,
the ability to prophesy through contemplating the way people roll reefers -
the shape, the licking pattern, the wrinkles and folds or absence thereof
in the paper.  "You will soon be in love," sez Saure, "see, this line here."
"It's long, isn't it?  Does that mean --" "Length is usually intensity.
Not time."
-- Thomas Pynchon, _Gravity's Rainbow_
Go ahead, capitalize the T on technology, deify it if it will make you feel
less responsible -- but it puts you in with the neutered, brother, in with
the eunuchs keeping the harem of our stolen Earth for the numb and joyless
hardons of human sultans, human elite with no right at all to be where they
are --"
-- Thomas Pynchon, _Gravity's Rainbow_
...the prevailing Catholic odor - incense, wax, centuries of mild bleating
from the lips of the flock.
-- Thomas Pynchon, _Gravity's Rainbow_
...At that time [the 1960s], Bell Laboratories scientists projected that
computer speeds as high as 30 million floating-point calculations per
second (megaflops) would be needed for the Army's ballistic missile
defense system.  Many computer experts -- including a National Academy
of Sciences panel -- said achieving such speeds, even using multiple
processors, was impossible.  Today, new generation supercomputers operate
at billions of operations per second (gigaflops).
-- Aviation Week & Space Technology, May 9, 1988, "Washington Roundup", pg 13
David Brinkley: The daily astrological charts are precisely where, in my
  judgment, they belong, and that is on the comic page.
George Will:  I don't think astrology belongs even on the comic pages.
  The comics are making no truth claim.
Brinkley:  Where would you put it?
Will:  I wouldn't put it in the newspaper.  I think it's transparent rubbish.
  It's a reflection of an idea that we expelled from Western thought in the
  sixteenth century, that we are in the center of a caring universe.  We are
  not the center of the universe, and it doesn't care.  The star's alignment
  at the time of our birth -- that is absolute rubbish.  It is not funny to
  have it intruded among people who have nuclear weapons.
Sam Donaldson:  This isn't something new.  Governor Ronald Reagan was sworn
  in just after midnight in his first term in Sacramento because the stars
  said it was a propitious time.
Will:  They [horoscopes] are utter crashing banalities.  They could apply to
  anyone and anything.
Brinkley:  When is the exact moment [of birth]?  I don't think the nurse is
  standing there with a stopwatch and a notepad.
Donaldson:  If we're making decisions based on the stars -- that's a cockamamie
  thing.  People want to know.
-- "This Week" with David Brinkley, ABC Television, Sunday, May 8, 1988,
   excerpts from a discussion on Astrology and Reagan
The reported resort to astrology in the White House has occasioned much
merriment.  It is not funny.  Astrological gibberish, which means astrology
generally, has no place in a newspaper, let alone government.  Unlike comics,
which are part of a newspaper's harmless pleasure and make no truth claims,
astrology is a fraud.  The idea that it gets a hearing in government is
dismaying.
-- George Will, Washing Post Writers Group
A serious public debate about the validity of astrology?  A serious believer
in the White House?  Two of them?  Give me a break.  What stifled my laughter
is that the image fits.  Reagan has always exhibited a fey indifference toward
science.  Facts, like numbers, roll off his back.  And we've all come to
accept it.  This time it was stargazing that became a serious issue....Not
that long ago, it was Reagan's support of Creationism....Creationists actually
got equal time with evolutionists.  The public was supposed to be open-minded
to the claims of paleontologists and fundamentalists, as if the two were
scientific colleagues....It has been clear for a long time that the president
is averse to science...In general, these attitudes fall onto friendly American
turf....But at the outer edges, this skepticism about science easily turns
into a kind of naive acceptance of nonscience, or even nonsense.  The same
people who doubt experts can also believe any quackery, from the benefits of
laetrile to eye of newt to the movment of planets.  We lose the capacity to
make rational -- scientific -- judgments.  It's all the same.
-- Ellen Goodman, The Boston Globe Newspaper Company-Washington Post Writers
    Group
The spectacle of astrology in the White House -- the governing center of
the world's greatest scientific and military power -- is so appalling that
it defies understanding and provides grounds for great fright.  The easiest
response is to laugh it off, and to indulge in wisecracks about Civil
Service ratings for horoscope makers and palm readers and whether Reagan
asked Mikhail Gorbachev for his sign.  A contagious good cheer is the
hallmark of this presidency, even when the most dismal matters are concerned.
But this time, it isn't funny.  It's plain scary.
-- Daniel S. Greenberg, Editor, _Science and Government Report_, writing in
   "Newsday", May 5, 1988
[Astrology is] 100 percent hokum, Ted.  As a matter of fact, the first edition
of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, written in 1771 -- 1771! -- said that this
belief system is a subject long ago ridiculed and reviled.  We're dealing with
beliefs that go back to the ancient Babylonians.  There's nothing there....
It sounds a lot like science, it sounds like astronomy.  It's got technical
terms.  It's got jargon.  It confuses the public....The astrologer is quite
glib, confuses the public, uses terms which come from science, come from
metaphysics, come from a host of fields, but they really mean nothing.  The
fact is that astrological beliefs go back at least 2,500 years.  Now that
should be a sufficiently long time for astrologers to prove their case.  They
have not proved their case....It's just simply gibberish.  The fact is, there's
no theory for it, there are no observational data for it.  It's been tested
and tested over the centuries.  Nobody's ever found any validity to it at
all.  It is not even close to a science.  A science has to be repeatable, it
has to have a logical foundation, and it has to be potentially vulnerable --
you test it.  And in that astrology is reqlly quite something else.
-- Astronomer Richard Berendzen, President, American University, on ABC
    News "Nightline," May 3, 1988
With the news that Nancy Reagan has referred to an astrologer when planning
her husband's schedule, and reports of Californians evacuating Los Angeles
on the strength of a prediction from a sixteenth-century physician and
astrologer Michel de Notredame, the image of the U.S. as a scientific and
technological nation has taking a bit of a battering lately.  Sadly, such
happenings cannot be dismissed as passing fancies.  They are manifestations
of a well-established "anti-science" tendency in the U.S. which, ultimately,
could threaten the country's position as a technological power. . . .  The
manifest widespread desire to reject rationality and substitute a series
of quasirandom beliefs in order to understand the universe does not augur
well for a nation deeply concerned about its ability to compete with its
industrial equals.  To the degree that it reflects the thinking of a
significant section of the public, this point of view encourages ignorance
of and, indeed, contempt for science and for rational methods of approaching
truth. . . . It is becoming clear that if the U.S. does not pick itself up
soon and devote some effort to educating the young effectively, its hope of
maintaining a semblance of leadership in the world may rest, paradoxically,
with a new wave of technically interested and trained immigrants who do not
suffer from the anti-science disease rampant in an apparently decaying society.
-- Physicist Tony Feinberg, in "New Scientist," May 19, 1988
miracle:  an extremely outstanding or unusual event, thing, or accomplishment.
-- Webster's Dictionary
A student asked the master for help... does this program run from the
Workbench? The master grabbed the mouse and pointed to an icon. "What is
this?" he asked. The student replied "That's the mouse". The master pressed
control-Amiga-Amiga and hit the student on the head with the Amiga ROM Kernel
Manual.
-- Amiga Zen Master Peter da Silva
"'Tis true, 'tis pity, and pity 'tis 'tis true."
-- Poloniouius, in Willie the Shake's _Hamlet, Prince of Darkness_
"To undertake a project, as the word's derivation indicates, means to cast an
idea out ahead of oneself so that it gains autonomy and is fulfilled not only
by the efforts of its originator but, indeed, independently of him as well.
-- Czeslaw Milosz
Remember, an int is not always 16 bits.  I'm not sure, but if the 80386 is one
step closer to Intel's slugfest with the CPU curve that is aymptotically
approaching a real machine, perhaps an int has been implemented as 32 bits by
some Unix vendors...?
-- Derek Terveer
"Despite its suffix, skepticism is not an "ism" in the sense of a belief
or dogma.  It is simply an approach to the problem of telling what is
counterfeit and what is genuine.  And a recognition of how costly it may
be to fail to do so.  To be a skeptic is to cultivate "street smarts" in
the battle for control of one's own mind, one's own money, one's own
allegiances.  To be a skeptic, in short, is to refuse to be a victim.
-- Robert S. DeBear, "An Agenda for Reason, Realism, and Responsibility,"
New York Skeptic (newsletter of the New York Area Skeptics, Inc.), Spring 1988
        Well, punk is kind of anti-ethical, anyway.  Its ethics, so to speak,
include a disdain for ethics in general.  If you have to think about some-
thing so hard, then it's bullshit anyway; that's the idea.  Punks are anti-
ismists, to coin a term.  But nonetheless, they have a pretty clearly defined
stance and image, and THAT is what we hang the term `punk' on.
-- Jeff G. Bone
"Everyone's head is a cheap movie show."
-- Jeff G. Bone
Life is full of concepts that are poorly defined.  In fact, there are very few
concepts that aren't.  It's hard to think of any in non-technical fields.  
-- Daniel Kimberg
...cyberpunk wants to see the mind as mechanistic & duplicable,
challenging basic assumptions about the nature of individuality & self.
That seems all the better reason to assume that cyberpunk art & music is
essentially mindless garbagio. Willy certainly addressed this idea in
"Count Zero," with Katatonenkunst, the automatic box-maker and the girl's
observation that the real art was the building of the machine itself,
rather than its output.
-- Eliot Handelman
As for the basic assumptions about individuality and self, this is the core
of what I like about cyberpunk. And it's the core of what I like about certain
pre-gibson neophile techie SF writers that certain folks here like to put
down. Not everyone makes the same assumptions. I haven't lost my mind... it's
backed up on tape.
-- Peter da Silva
Who are the artists in the Computer Graphics Show?  Wavefront's latest box, or
the people who programmed it?  Should Mandelbrot get all the credit for the
output of programs like MandelVroom?
-- Peter da Silva
"It's not just a computer -- it's your ass."
-- Cal Keegan
(null cookie; hope that's ok)
"Every group has a couple of experts.  And every group has at least one idiot.
Thus are balance and harmony (and discord) maintained.  It's sometimes hard
to remember this in the bulk of the flamewars that all of the hassle and
pain is generally caused by one or two highly-motivated, caustic twits."
-- Chuq Von Rospach, chuq@apple.com, about Usenet
"The fundamental purpose animating the Faith of God and His Religion is to
safeguard the interests and promote the unity of the human race, and to foster
the spirit of love and fellowship amongst men. Suffer it not to become a source
of dissension and discord, of hate and enmity."

"Religion is verily the chief instrument for the establishment of order in the
world and of tranquillity amongst it's peoples...The greater the decline of
religion, the more grievous the waywardness of the ungodly. This cannot but
lead in the end to chaos and confusion."
-- Baha'u'llah, a selection from the Baha'i scripture
Q: Somebody just posted that Roman Polanski directed Star Wars.  What
should I do?

A: Post the correct answer at once!  We can't have people go on believing
that!  Very good of you to spot this.  You'll probably be the only one to
make the correction, so post as soon as you can.  No time to lose, so
certainly don't wait a day, or check to see if somebody else has made the
correction.

And it's not good enough to send the message by mail.  Since you're the
only one who really knows that it was Francis Coppola, you have to inform
the whole net right away!

-- Brad Templeton, _Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette_
Q: How can I choose what groups to post in?  ...
Q: How about an example?

A: Ok.  Let's say you want to report that Gretzky has been traded from the
Oilers to the Kings.  Now right away you might think rec.sport.hockey
would be enough.  WRONG.  Many more people might be interested.  This is a
big trade!  Since it's a NEWS article, it belongs in the news.* hierarchy
as well.  If you are a news admin, or there is one on your machine, try
news.admin.  If not, use news.misc.

The Oilers are probably interested in geology, so try sci.physics.  He is
a big star, so post to sci.astro, and sci.space because they are also
interested in stars.  Next, his name is Polish sounding.  So post to
soc.culture.polish.  But that group doesn't exist, so cross-post to
news.groups suggesting it should be created.  With this many groups of
interest, your article will be quite bizarre, so post to talk.bizarre as
well.  (And post to comp.std.mumps, since they hardly get any articles
there, and a "comp" group will propagate your article further.)

You may also find it is more fun to post the article once in each group.
If you list all the newsgroups in the same article, some newsreaders will
only show the the article to the reader once!  Don't tolerate this.
-- Brad Templeton, _Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette_
Q: I cant spell worth a dam.  I hope your going too tell me what to do?

A: Don't worry about how your articles look.  Remember it's the message
that counts, not the way it's presented.  Ignore the fact that sloppy
spelling in a purely written forum sends out the same silent messages that
soiled clothing would when addressing an audience.

-- Brad Templeton, _Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette_
Q: They just announced on the radio that Dan Quayle was picked as the
Republican V.P. candidate.  Should I post?

A: Of course.  The net can reach people in as few as 3 to 5 days.  It's
the perfect way to inform people about such news events long after the
broadcast networks have covered them.  As you are probably the only person
to have heard the news on the radio, be sure to post as soon as you can.

-- Brad Templeton, _Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette_
Q:  What's the difference between a car salesman and a computer
    salesman?

A:  The car salesman can probably drive!

-- Joan McGalliard (jem@latcs1.oz.au)
A selection from the Taoist Writings:

"Lao-Tan asked Confucius: `What do you mean by benevolence and righteousness?'
Confucius said:  `To be in one's inmost heart in kindly sympathy with all
things; to love all men and allow no selfish thoughts: this is the nature
of benevolence and righteousness.'"
-- Kwang-tzu
"Anything created must necessarily be inferior to the essence of the creator."
-- Claude Shouse (shouse@macomw.ARPA)

"Einstein's mother must have been one heck of a physicist."
-- Joseph C. Wang (joe@athena.mit.edu)
"And it's my opinion, and that's only my opinion, you are a lunatic.  Just
because there are a few hunderd other people sharing your lunacy with you
does not make you any saner.  Doomed, eh?"
-- Oleg Kiselev,oleg@CS.UCLA.EDU
"I am convinced that the manufacturers of carpet odor removing powder have
included encapsulated time released cat urine in their products.  This
technology must be what prevented its distribution during my mom's reign.  My
carpet smells like piss, and I don't have a cat.  Better go by some more."
-- timw@zeb.USWest.COM, in alt.conspiracy
"Here's something to think about:  How come you never see a headline like
`Psychic Wins Lottery.'"
-- Comedian Jay Leno
"Time is an illusion.  Lunchtime doubly so."
-- Ford Prefect, _Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy_
"Be *excellent* to each other."
-- Bill, or Ted, in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure
"I see little divinity about them or you.  You talk to me of Christianity
when you are in the act of hanging your enemies.  Was there ever such
blasphemous nonsense!"
-- Shaw, "The Devil's Disciple"
It's time to boot, do your boot ROMs know where your disk controllers are?
"...a most excellent barbarian ... Genghis Kahn!"
-- _Bill And Ted's Excellent Adventure_
        "Yes, I am a real piece of work.  One thing we learn at Ulowell is
how to flame useless hacking non-EE's like you.  I am superior to you in
every way by training and expertise in the technical field.  Anyone can learn
how to hack, but Engineering doesn't come nearly as easily.  Actually, I'm
not trying to offend all you CS majors out there, but I think EE is one of the
hardest majors/grad majors to pass.  Fortunately, I am making it."
-- "Warrior Diagnostics" (wardiag@sky.COM)

"Being both an EE and an asshole at the same time must be a terrible burden
for you.  This isn't really a flame, just a casual observation.  Makes me
glad I was a CS major, life is really pleasant for me.  Have fun with your
chosen mode of existence!"
-- Jim Morrison (morrisj@mist.cs.orst.edu)
                     THE "FUN WITH USENET" MANIFESTO
Very little happens on Usenet without some sort of response from some other
reader.  Fun With Usenet postings are no exception.  Since there are some who
might question the rationale of some of the excerpts included therein, I have
written up a list of guidelines that sum up the philosophy behind these
postings.

        One.  I never cut out words in the middle of a quote without a VERY
good reason, and I never cut them out without including ellipses.  For
instance, "I am not a goob" might become "I am ... a goob", but that's too
mundane to bother with.  "I'm flame proof" might (and has) become
"I'm ...a... p...oof" but that's REALLY stretching it.

        Two.  If I cut words off the beginning or end of a quote, I don't
put ellipses, but neither do I capitalize something that wasn't capitalized
before the cut. "I don't think that the Church of Ubizmo is a wonderful
place" would turn into "the Church of Ubizmo is a wonderful place".  Imagine
the posting as a tape-recording of the poster's thoughts.  If I can set
up the quote via fast-forwarding and stopping the tape, and without splicing,
I don't put ellipses in.  And by the way, I love using this mechanism for
turning things around.  If you think something stinks, say so - don't say you
don't think it's wonderful.   ...
-- D. J. McCarthy (dmccart@cadape.UUCP)
"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts."
-- John Wooden
"If you can write a nation's stories, you needn't worry about who makes its
laws.  Today, television tells most of the stories to most of the people
most of the time."
-- George Gerbner
On the subject of C program indentation:
"In My Egotistical Opinion, most people's C programs should be indented
six feet downward and covered with dirt."
-- Blair P. Houghton
      I bought the latest computer;
      it came fully loaded.
      It was guaranteed for 90 days,
      but in 30 was outmoded!
        - The Wall Street Journal passed along by Big Red Computer's SCARLETT
Contemptuous lights flashed across the computer's console.
-- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"There must be some mistake," he said, "are you not a greater computer than
the Milliard Gargantubrain which can count all the atoms in a star in a
millisecond?"
"The Milliard Gargantubrain?" said Deep Thought with unconcealed contempt.
"A mere abacus.  Mention it not."
-- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"But are you not," he said, "a more fiendish disputant than the Great Hyperlobic
Omni-Cognate Neutron Wrangler of Ciceronicus Twelve, the Magic and
Indefatigable?"

"The Great Hyperlobic Omni-Cognate Neutron Wrangler," said Deep Thought,
thoroughly rolling the r's, "could talk all four legs off an Arcturan
Mega-Donkey -- but only I could persuade it to go for a walk afterward."
-- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"America is a stronger nation for the ACLU's uncompromising effort."
-- President John F. Kennedy
"The ACLU has stood foursquare against the recurring tides of hysteria that
>from time to time threaten freedoms everyhere... Indeed, it is difficult
to appreciate how far our freedoms might have eroded had it not been for the
Union's valiant representation in the courts of the constitutional rights
of people of all persuasions, no matter how unpopular or even despised
by the majority they were at the time."
-- former Supreme Court Chief Justice Earl Warren
"Let's not be too tough on our own ignorance.  It's the thing that makes
America great.  If America weren't incomparably ignorant, how could we
have tolerated the last eight years?"
-- Frank Zappa, Feb 1, 1989
"The History of every major Galactic Civilization tends to pass through
three distinct and recognizable phases, those of Survival, Inquiry and
Sophistication, otherwise known as the How, Why and Where phases.
"For instance, the first phase is characterized by the question 'How can
we eat?' the second by the question 'Why do we eat?' and the third by
the question 'Where shall we have lunch?'"
-- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
"It follows that any commander in chief who undertakes to carry out a plan
which he considers defective is at fault; he must put forth his reasons,
insist of the plan being changed, and finally tender his resignation rather
than be the instrument of his army's downfall."
-- Napoleon, "Military Maxims and Thought"
"It ain't over until it's over."
-- Casey Stengel
"...Local prohibitions cannot block advances in military and commercial
technology... Democratic movements for local restraint can only restrain
the world's democracies, not the world as a whole."
-- K. Eric Drexler
"The rotter who simpers that he sees no difference between a five-dollar bill
and a whip deserves to learn the difference on his own back -- as, I think, he
will."
-- Francisco d'Anconia, in Ayn Rand's _Atlas Shrugged_
"Pardon me for breathing, which I never do anyway so I don't know why I bother
to say it, oh God, I'm so depressed.  Here's another of those self-satisfied
doors.  Life!  Don't talk to me about life."
-- Marvin the Paranoid Android
One of the major difficulties Trillian experienced in her relationship with
Zaphod was learning to distinguish between him pretending to be stupid just
to get people off their guard, pretending to be stupid because he couldn't
be bothered to think and wanted someone else to do it for him, pretending
to be so outrageously stupid to hide the fact that he actually didn't understand
hat was going on, and really being genuinely stupid.  He was reknowned for
being quite clever and quite clearly was so -- but not all the time, which
obviously worried him, hence the act.  He preferred people to be puzzled
rather than contemptuous.  This above all appeared to Trillian to be
genuinely stupid, but she could no longer be bothered to argue about.
-- Douglas Adams, _The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy_
Far back in the mists of ancient time, in the great and glorious days of the
former Galactic Empire, life was wild, rich and largely tax free.

Mighty starships plied their way between exotic suns, seeking adventure and
reward among the furthest reaches of Galactic space.  In those days, spirits
were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women
and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures
from Alpha Centauri.  And all dared to brave unknown terrors, to do mighty
deeds, to boldly split infinitives that no man had split before -- and thus
was the Empire forged.
-- Douglas Adams, _The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy_
"I don't know where we come from,
Don't know where we're going to,
And if all this should have a reason,
We would be the last to know.

So let's just hope there is a promised land,
And until then,
...as best as you can."
-- Steppenwolf, "Rock Me Baby"
"All the system's paths must be topologically and circularly interrelated for
conceptually definitive, locally transformable, polyhedronal understanding to
be attained in our spontaneous -- ergo, most economical -- geodesiccally
structured thoughts."
-- R. Buckminster Fuller [...and a total nonsequitur as far as I can tell.  -kl]
"It's when they say 2 + 2 = 5 that I begin to argue."
-- Eric Pepke
"Irrigation of the land with sewater desalinated by fusion power is ancient.
It's called 'rain'."
-- Michael McClary, in alt.fusion
A billion here, a billion there -- pretty soon it adds up to real money.
                -- Sen. Everett Dirksen, on the U.S. defense budget
A billion seconds ago Harry Truman was president.
A billion minutes ago was just after the time of Christ.
A billion hours ago man had not yet walked on earth.
A billion dollars ago was late yesterday afternoon at the U.S. Treasury.
A bureaucrat's idea of cleaning up his files is to make a copy of everything
before he destroys it.
A diplomat's life consists of three things: protocol, Geritol, and alcohol.
                -- Adlai Stevenson
A real diplomat is one who can cut his neighbor's throat without having
his neighbour notice it.
                -- Trygve Lie
A right is not what someone gives you; it's what no one can take from you.
                -- Ramsey Clark
A statesman is a politician who's been dead 10 or 15 years.
                -- Harry S. Truman
Alexander Hamilton started the U.S. Treasury with nothing - and that was
the closest our country has ever been to being even.
        -- The Best of Will Rogers
An American's a person who isn't afraid to criticize the president but is
always polite to traffic cops.
Anarchy may not be a better form of government, but it's better than no
government at all.
And they shall beat their swords into plowshares, for if you hit a man
with a plowshare, he's going to know he's been hit.
        "Any news from the President on a successor?" he asked hopefully.
        "None," Anita replied.  "She's having great difficulty finding someone
qualified who is willing to accept the post."
        "Then I stay," said Dr. Fresh.  "I'm not good for much, but I
can at least make a decision."
        "Somewhere," he grumphed, "there must be a naive, opportunistic
young welp with a masochistic streak who would like to run the most
up-and-down bureaucracy in the history of mankind."
                -- R.L. Forward, "Flight of the Dragonfly"
Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no
account be allowed to do the job.
                -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
Canada Post doesn't really charge 32 cents for a stamp.  It's 2 cents
for postage and 30 cents for storage.
                -- Gerald Regan, Cabinet Minister, 12/31/83 Financial Post
Don't talk to me about naval tradition.  It's nothing but rum, sodomy and
the lash.
        -- Winston Churchill
Even though they raised the rate for first class mail in the United
States we really shouldn't complain -- it's still only two cents a day.

        [and getting better!  Soon it'll be down to a penny a day!]
Every one says that politicians lie all the time, and that just isn't so!
But you do have to understand body language to know when they're lying and
when they aren't.

        When a politician rubs his nose, he isn't lying.
        When a politician tugs on his ear, he isn't lying.
        When a politician scratches his collar bone, he isn't lying.
        When his mouth starts moving, that's when he's lying!
Far back in the mists of ancient time, in the great and glorious days of the
former Galactic Empire, life was wild, rich and largely tax free.

Mighty starships plied their way between exotic suns, seeking adventure and
reward among the furthest reaches of Galactic space.  In those days, spirits
were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women
and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures
from Alpha Centauri.  And all dared to brave unknown terrors, to do mighty
deeds, to boldly split infinitives that no man had split before -- and thus
was the Empire forged.
                -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
Fear and loathing, my man, fear and loathing.
                -- H.S. Thompson
Freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose.
                -- Kris Kristofferson, "Me and Bobby McGee"
"... gentlemen do not read each other's mail."
                -- Secretary of State Henry Stimson, on closing down
                   the Black Chamber, the precursor to the National
                   Security Agency.
Gentlemen,
        Whilst marching from Portugal to a position which commands the
approach to Madrid and the French forces, my officers have been
diligently complying with your requests which have been sent by H.M. ship
from London to Lisbon and thence by dispatch to our headquarters.
        We have enumerated our saddles, bridles, tents and tent poles,
and all manner of sundry items for which His Majesty's Government holds
me accountable. I have dispatched reports on the character, wit, and
spleen of every officer. Each item and every farthing has been accounted
for, with two regrettable exceptions for which I beg your indulgence.
        Unfortunately the sum of one shilling and ninepence remains
unaccounted for in one infantry battalion's petty cash and there has been
a hideous confusion as the the number of jars of raspberry jam issued to
one cavalry regiment during a sandstorm in western Spain.  This
reprehensible carelessness may be related to the pressure of circumstance,
since we are war with France, a fact which may come as a bit of a surprise
to you gentlemen in Whitehall.
        This brings me to my present purpose, which is to request
elucidation of my instructions from His Majesty's Government so that I
may better understand why I am dragging an army over these barren plains.
I construe that perforce it must be one of two alternative duties, as
given below.  I shall pursue either one with the best of my ability, but
I cannot do both:
        1. To train an army of uniformed British clerks in Spain for the
benefit of the accountants and copy-boys in London or perchance:
        2. To see to it that the forces of Napoleon are driven out of Spain.
                -- Duke of Wellington, to the British Foreign Office,
                   London, 1812
Government spending?  I don't know what it's all about.  I don't know
any more about this thing than an economist does, and, God knows, he
doesn't know much.
                -- Will Rogers
        Graduating seniors, parents and friends...
        Let me begin by reassuring you that my remarks today will stand up
to the most stringent requirements of the new appropriateness.
        The intra-college sensitivity advisory committee has vetted the
text of even trace amounts of subconscious racism, sexism and classism.
        Moreover, a faculty panel of deconstructionists have reconfigured
the rhetorical components within a post-structuralist framework, so as to
expunge any offensive elements of western rationalism and linear logic.
        Finally, all references flowing from a white, male, eurocentric
perspective have been eliminated, as have any other ruminations deemed
denigrating to the political consensus of the moment.

        Thank you and good luck.
                -- Doonesbury, the University Chancellor's graduation speech.
Great Moments in History: #3

August 27, 1949:
        A Hall of Fame opened to honor outstanding members of the
        Women's Air Corp.  It was a WAC's Museum.
Have you noticed the way people's intelligence capabilities decline
sharply the minute they start waving guns around?
                -- Dr. Who
He who attacks the fundamentals of the American broadcasting industry
attacks democracy itself.
                -- William S. Paley, chairman of CBS
He's just a politician trying to save both his faces...
I don't like the Dutchman.  He's a crocodile.  He's sneaky.  I don't trust him.
                -- Jack "Legs" Diamond, just before a peace conference
                   with Dutch Schultz.

I don't trust Legs.  He's nuts.  He gets excited and starts pulling a
trigger like another guy wipes his nose.
                -- Dutch Schultz, just before a peace conference with
                   "Legs" Diamond.
I have already given two cousins to the war and I stand ready to sacrifice
my wife's brother.
                -- Artemus Ward
I trust the first lion he meets will do his duty.
                -- J.P. Morgan on Teddy Roosevelt's safari
I used to be a rebel in my youth.

This cause... that cause... (chuckle) I backed 'em ALL!  But I learned.
Rebellion is simply a device used by the immature to hide from his own
problems.  So I lost interest in politics.  Now when I feel aroused by
a civil rights case or a passport hearing... I realize it's just a device.
I go to my analyst and we work it out.  You have no idea how much better
I feel these days.
                -- J. Feiffer
I want to be the white man's brother, not his brother-in-law.
                -- Martin Luther King, Jr.
I was appalled by this story of the destruction of a member of a valued
endangered species.  It's all very well to celebrate the practicality of
pigs by ennobling the porcine sibling who constructed his home out of
bricks and mortar.  But to wantonly destroy a wolf, even one with an
excessive taste for porkers, is unconscionable in these ecologically
critical times when both man and his domestic beasts continue to maraud
the earth.
                Sylvia Kamerman, "Book Reviewing"
I would rather be a serf in a poor man's house and be above ground than
reign among the dead.
                -- Achilles, "The Odessey", XI, 489-91
"I'll carry your books, I'll carry a tune, I'll carry on, carry over,
carry forward, Cary Grant, cash & carry, Carry Me Back To Old Virginia,
I'll even Hara Kari if you show me how, but I will *not* carry a gun."
                -- Hawkeye, M*A*S*H
"I'm willing to sacrifice anything for this cause, even other people's lives."
If fifty million people say a foolish thing, it's still a foolish thing.
                -- Bertrand Russell
If Karl, instead of writing a lot about Capital, had made a lot of Capital,
it would have been much better.
                -- Karl Marx's Mother
"If the King's English was good enough for Jesus, it's good enough for me!"
                -- "Ma" Ferguson, Governor of Texas (circa 1920)
If you want to understand your government, don't begin by reading the
Constitution.  It conveys precious little of the flavor of today's
statecraft.  Instead, read selected portions of the Washington telephone
directory containing listings for all the organizations with titles
beginning with the word "National."
                -- George Will
If you wants to get elected president, you'se got to think up some
memoraboble homily so's school kids can be pestered into memorizin'
it, even if they don't know what it means.
                -- Walt Kelly, "The Pogo Party"
If your hands are clean and your cause is just and your demands are
reasonable, at least it's a start.
In America, any boy may become president and I suppose that's just one
of the risks he takes.
                -- Adlai Stevenson
In an orderly world, there's always a place for the disorderly.
In Dr. Johnson's famous dictionary patriotism is defined as the last
resort of the scoundrel.  With all due respect to an enlightened but
inferior lexicographer I beg to submit that it is the first.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
In our civilization, and under our republican form of government, intelligence
is so highly honored that it is rewarded by exemption from the cares of office.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
... indifference is a militant thing ... when it goes away it leaves
smoking ruins, where lie citizens bayonetted through the throat.  It is
not a children's pastime like mere highway robbery.
                -- Stephen Crane
Interesting poll results reported in today's New York Post: people on the
street in midtown Manhattan were asked whether they approved of the US
invasion of Grenada.  Fifty-three percent said yes; 39 percent said no;
and 8 percent said "Gimme a quarter?"
                -- David Letterman
Interfere?  Of course we should interfere!  Always do what you're
best at, that's what I say.
                -- Doctor Who
It follows that any commander in chief who undertakes to carry out a plan
which he considers defective is at fault; he must put forth his reasons,
insist of the plan being changed, and finally tender his resignation rather
than be the instrument of his army's downfall.
                -- Napoleon, "Military Maxims and Thought"
It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them.
                -- Alfred Adler
It is like saying that for the cause of peace, God and the Devil will
have a high-level meeting.
                -- Rev. Carl McIntire, on Nixon's China trip
It is necessary for the welfare of society that genius should be privileged
to utter sedition, to blaspheme, to outrage good taste, to corrupt the
youthful mind, and generally to scandalize one's uncles.
                -- George Bernard Shaw
It pays in England to be a revolutionary and a bible-smacker most of
one's life and then come round.
                -- Lord Alfred Douglas
It took a while to surface, but it appears that a long-distance credit card
may have saved a U.S. Army unit from heavy casualties during the Grenada
military rescue/invasion. Major General David Nichols, Air Force ... said
the Army unit was in a house surrounded by Cuban forces.  One soldier found
a telephone and, using his credit card, called Ft. Bragg, N.C., telling Army
officiers there of the perilous situation. The officers in turn called the
Air Force, which sent in gunships to scatter the Cubans and relieve the unit.
                -- Aviation Week and Space Technology
"It was a Roman who said it was sweet to die for one's country.  The
Greeks never said it was sweet to die for anything.  They had no vital lies."
                -- Edith Hamilton, "The Greek Way"
It was the Law of the Sea, they said.  Civilization ends at the waterline.
Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson
It's a good thing we don't get all the government we pay for.
It's a recession when your neighbour loses his job; it's a depression
when you lose yours.
                -- Harry S. Truman
        "It's a summons."
        "What's a summons?"
        "It means summon's in trouble."
                -- Rocky and Bullwinkle
It's getting uncommonly easy to kill people in large numbers, and the first
thing a principle does -- if it really is a principle -- is to kill somebody.
                -- Dorothy L. Sayers, "Gaudy Night"
It's important that people know what you stand for.
It's more important that they know what you won't stand for.
It's no surprise that things are so screwed up: everyone that knows how
to run a government is either driving taxicabs or cutting hair.
                -- George Burns
It's the opinion of some that crops could be grown on the moon.  Which raises
the fear that it may not be long before we're paying somebody not to.
                -- Franklin P. Jones
        Jacek, a Polish schoolboy, is told by his teacher that he has
been chosen to carry the Polish flag in the May Day parade.
        "Why me?"  whines the boy.  "Three years ago I carried the flag
when Brezhnev was the Secretary; then I carried the flag when it was
Andropov's turn, and again when Chernenko was in the Kremlin.  Why is
it always me, teacher?"
        "Because, Jacek, you have such golden hands," the teacher
explains.
                -- being told in Poland, 1987
Join in the new game that's sweeping the country.  It's called "Bureaucracy".
Everybody stands in a circle.  The first person to do anything loses.
Let no guilty man escape.
                -- U.S. Grant
Life is a concentration camp.  You're stuck here and there's no way
out and you can only rage impotently against your persecutors.
                -- Woody Allen
Mr. Salter's side of the conversation was limited to expressions of assent.
When Lord Copper was right he said "Definitely, Lord Copper"; when he was
wrong, "Up to a point."
        "Let me see, what's the name of the place I mean?  Capital of Japan?
Yokohama isn't it?"
        "Up to a point, Lord Copper."
        "And Hong Kong definitely belongs to us, doesn't it?"
        "Definitely, Lord Copper."
                -- Evelyn Waugh, "Scoop"
My central memory of that time seems to hang on one or five or maybe forty
nights -- or very early mornings -- when I left the Fillmore half-crazy and,
instead of going home, aimed the big 650 Lightning across the Bay Bridge at
a hundred miles an hour ... booming through the Treasure Island tunnel at
the lights of Oakland and Berkeley and Richmond, not quite sure which
turnoff to take when I got to the other end ... but being absolutely certain
that no matter which way I went I would come to a place where people were
just as high and wild as I was: no doubt at all about that.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson
Never trust an automatic pistol or a D.A.'s deal.
                -- John Dillinger
No man's ambition has a right to stand in the way of performing a simple
act of justice.
                -- John Altgeld
No, my friend, the way to have good and safe government, is not to trust it
all to one, but to divide it among the many, distributing to every one exactly
the functions he is competent to.  It is by dividing and subdividing these
republics from the national one down through all its subordinations, until it
ends in the administration of every man's farm by himself; by placing under
every one what his own eye may superintend, that all will be done for the best.
                -- Thomas Jefferson, to Joseph Cabell, 1816
Nobody shot me.
                -- Frank Gusenberg, his last words, when asked by police
                who had shot him 14 times with a machine gun in the Saint
                Valentine's Day Massacre.

Only Capone kills like that.
                -- George "Bugs" Moran, on the Saint Valentine's Day Massacre

The only man who kills like that is Bugs Moran.
                -- Al Capone, on the Saint Valentine's Day Massacre
Nobody takes a bribe.  Of course at Christmas if you happen to hold out
your hat and somebody happens to put a little something in it, well, that's
different.
                -- New York City Police Commissioner (Ret.) William P.
                   O'Brien, instructions to the force.
Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.
                -- S. Johnson, "The Life of Samuel Johnson" by J. Boswell

In Dr. Johnson's famous dictionary patriotism is defined as the last
resort of the scoundrel.  With all due respect to an enlightened but
inferior lexicographer I beg to submit that it is the first.
                -- Ambrose Bierce

When Dr. Johnson defined patriotism as the last refuge of a scoundrel,
he ignored the enormous possibilities of the word reform.
                -- Sen. Roscoe Conkling

Public office is the last refuge of a scoundrel.
                -- Boies Penrose
People usually get what's coming to them ... unless it's been mailed.
Perhaps the most widespread illusion is that if we were in power we would
behave very differently from those who now hold it -- when, in truth, in
order to get power we would have to become very much like them.  (Lenin's
fatal mistake, both in theory and in practice.)
"Remember, if it's being done correctly, here or abroad, it's ___not the U.S.
Army doing it!"
                -- Good Morning VietNam
        Strange memories on this nervous night in Las Vegas.  Five years later?
Six?  It seems like a lifetime, or at least a Main Era -- the kind of peak that
never comes again.  San Fransisco in the middle sixties was a very special time
and place to be a part of.  Maybe it meant something.  Maybe not, in the long
run...  There was madness in any direction, at any hour.  If not across the
Bay, then up the Golden Gate or down 101 to Los Altos or La Honda...  You could
strike sparks anywhere. There was a fantastic universal sense that whatever we
were doing was right, that we were winning...
        And that, I think, was the handle -- that sense of inevitable victory
over the forces of Old and Evil.  Not in any mean or military sense; we didn't
need that. Our energy would simply prevail.  There was no point in fighting
-- on our side or theirs.  We had all the momentum; we were riding the crest
of a high and beautiful wave.  So now, less than five years later, you can go
up on a steep hill in Las Vegas and look West, and with the right kind of eyes
you can almost ___see the high-water mark -- that place where the wave finally
broke and rolled back.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson
Surprise!  You are the lucky winner of random I.R.S. Audit!  Just type
in your name and social security number.  Please remember that leaving
the room is punishable under law:

Name
#
That's where the money was.
                -- Willie Sutton, on being asked why he robbed a bank

It's a rather pleasant experience to be alone in a bank at night.
                -- Willie Sutton
... The Anarchists' [national] anthem is an international anthem that
consists of 365 raspberries blown in very quick succession to the tune
of "Camptown Races".  Nobody has to stand up for it, nobody has to
listen to it, and, even better, nobody has to play it.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
The Constitution may not be perfect, but it's a lot better than what we've got!
        The General disliked trying to explain the highly technical inner
workings of the U.S. Air Force.
        "$7,662 for a ten cup coffee maker, General?" the Senator asked.
        In his head he ran through his standard explanations.  "It's not so,"
he thought.  "It's a deterrent."  Soon he came up with, "It's computerized,
Senator.  Tiny computer chips make coffee that's smooth and full-bodied.  Try
a cup."
        The Senator did.  "Pfffttt!  Tastes like jet fuel!"
        "It's not so," the General thought.  "It's a deterrent."
        Then he remembered something.  "We bought a lot of untested computer
chips," the General answered.  "They got into everything.  Just a little
mix-up.  Nothing serious."
        Then he remembered something else.  It was at the site of the
mysterious B-1 crash.  A strange smell in the fuel lines.  It smelled like
coffee.  Smooth and full bodied...
                -- Another Episode of General's Hospital
The hater of property and of government takes care to have his warranty
deed recorded, and the book written against fame and learning has the
author's name on the title page.
                -- Ralph Waldo Emerson, Journals, 1831
The income tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf
has.  Even when you make a tax form out on the level, you don't know
when it's through if you are a crook or a martyr.
                -- Will Rogers
The Least Successful Executions
        History has furnished us with two executioners worthy of attention.
The first performed in Sydney in Australia.  In 1803 three attempts were
made to hang a Mr. Joseph Samuels.  On the first two of these the rope
snapped, while on the third Mr. Samuels just hung there peacefully until he
and everyone else got bored.  Since he had proved unsusceptible to capital
punishment, he was reprieved.
        The most important British executioner was Mr. James Berry who
tried three times in 1885 to hang Mr. John Lee at Exeter Jail, but on each
occasion failed to get the trap door open.
        In recognition of this achievement, the Home Secretary commuted
Lee's sentence to "life" imprisonment.  He was released in 1917, emigrated
to America and lived until 1933.
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
The Least Successful Police Dogs
        America has a very strong candidate in "La Dur", a fearsome looking
schnauzer hound, who was retired from the Orlando police force in Florida
in 1978.  He consistently refused to do anything which might ruffle or
offend the criminal classes.
        His handling officer, Rick Grim, had to admit: "He just won't go up
and bite them.  I got sick and tired of doing that dog's work for him."
        The British contenders in this category, however, took things a
stage further.  "Laddie" and "Boy" were trained as detector dogs for drug
raids.  Their employment was terminated following a raid in the Midlands in
1967.
        While the investigating officer questioned two suspects, they
patted and stroked the dogs who eventually fell asleep in front of the
fire.  When the officer moved to arrest the suspects, one dog growled at
him while the other leapt up and bit his thigh.
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
The man with the best job in the country is the Vice President.  All he has
to do is get up every morning and say, "How's the President?"
                -- Will Rogers

The vice-presidency ain't worth a pitcher of warm spit.
                -- Vice President John Nance Garner
        The Minnesota Board of Education voted to consider requiring all
students to do some "volunteer work" as a prerequisite to high school
graduation.
        Senator Orrin Hatch said that "capital punishment is our society's
recognition of the sanctity of human life."
        According to the tax bill signed by President Reagan on December 22,
1987, Don Tyson and his sister-in-law Barbara run a "family farm."  Their
"farm" has 25,000 employees and grosses $1.7 billion a year.  But as a "family
farm" they get tax breaks that save them $135 million a year.
        Scott L. Pickard, spokesperson for the Massachusetts Department of
Public Works, calls them "ground-mounted confirmatory route markers."  You
probably call them road signs, but then you don't work in a government agency.
        It's not "elderly" or "senior citizens" anymore.  Now it's "chrono-
logically experienced citizens."
        According to the FAA, the propeller blade didn't break off, it was
just a case of "uncontained blade liberation."
                -- Quarterly Review of Doublespeak (NCTE)
The polite thing to do has always been to address people as they wish to be
addressed, to treat them in a way they think dignified.  But it is equally
important to accept and tolerate different standards of courtesy, not
expecting everyone else to adapt to one's own preferences.  Only then can
we hope to restore the insult to its proper social function of expressing
true distaste.
                -- Judith Martin, "Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly
                   Correct Behavior"
The politician is someone who deals in man's problems of adjustment.
To ask a politician to lead us is to ask the tail of a dog to lead the dog.
                -- Buckminster Fuller
The scum also rises.
                -- Dr. Hunter S. Thompson
"The wages of sin are death; but after they're done taking out taxes,
it's just a tired feeling:"
The world's great men have not commonly been great scholars, nor its great
scholars great men.
                -- Oliver Wendell Holmes
The Worst Prison Guards
        The largest number of convicts ever to escape simultaneously from a
maximum security prison is 124.  This record is held by Alcoente Prison,
near Lisbon in Portugal.
        During the weeks leading up to the escape in July 1978 the prison
warders had noticed that attendances had fallen at film shows which
included "The Great Escape", and also that 220 knives and a huge quantity
of electric cable had disappeared.  A guard explained, "Yes, we were
planning to look for them, but never got around to it."  The warders had
not, however, noticed the gaping holes in the wall because they were
"covered with posters".  Nor did they detect any of the spades, chisels,
water hoses and electric drills amassed by the inmates in large quantities.
The night before the breakout one guard had noticed that of the 36
prisoners in his block only 13 were present.  He said this was "normal"
because inmates sometimes missed roll-call or hid, but usually came back
the next morning.
        "We only found out about the escape at 6:30 the next morning when
one of the prisoners told us," a warder said later.  [...]  When they
eventually checked, the prison guards found that exactly half of the gaol's
population was missing.  By way of explanation the Justice Minister, Dr.
Santos Pais, claimed that the escape was "normal" and part of the
"legitimate desire of the prisoner to regain his liberty."
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
There's no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government
working for you.
                -- Will Rogers
There's nothing in the middle of the road but yellow stripes and dead
armadillos.
                -- Jim Hightower, Texas Agricultural Commissioner
They call them "squares" because it's the most complicated shape they can
deal with.
        Thompson, if he is to be believed, has sampled the entire rainbow of
legal and illegal drugs in heroic efforts to feel better than he does.
        As for the truth about his health: I have asked around about it.  I
am told that he appears to be strong and rosy, and steadily sane.  But we
will be doing what he wants us to do, I think, if we consider his exterior
a sort of Dorian Gray facade.  Inwardly, he is being eaten alive by tinhorn
politicians.
        The disease is fatal.  There is no known cure.  The most we can do
for the poor devil, it seems to me, is to name his disease in his honor.
From this moment on, let all those who feel that Americans can be as easily
led to beauty as to ugliness, to truth as to public relations, to joy as to
bitterness, be said to be suffering from Hunter Thompson's disease.  I don't
have it this morning.  It comes and goes.  This morning I don't have Hunter
Thompson's disease.
                -- Kurt Vonnegut Jr., on Dr. Hunter S. Thompson: Excerpt
                from "A Political Disease", Vonnegut's review of "Fear and
                Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72"
To think contrary to one's era is heroism.  But to speak against it is madness.
                -- Eugene Ionesco
Two battleships assigned to the training squadron had been at sea on maneuvers
in heavy weather for several days.  I was serving on the lead battleship and
was on watch on the bridge as night fell.  The visibility was poor with patchy
fog, so the Captain remained on the bridge keeping an eye on all activities.
        Shortly after dark, the lookout on the wing of the bridge reported,
"Light, bearing on the starboard bow."
        "Is it steady or moving astern?" the Captain called out.
        Lookout replied, "Steady, Captain," which meant we were on a dangerous
collision course with that ship.
        The Captain then called to the signalman, "Signal that ship: We are on
a collision course, advise you change course 20 degrees."
        Back came a signal "Advisable for you to change course 20 degrees."
        In reply, the Captain said, "Send: I'm a Captain, change course 20
degrees!"
        "I'm a seaman second class," came the reply, "You had better change
course 20 degrees."
        By that time, the Captain was furious. He spit out, "Send: I'm a
battleship, change course 20 degrees."
        Back came the flashing light: "I'm a lighthouse!"
        We changed course.
                -- The Naval Institute's "Proceedings"
Under capitalism, man exploits man.  Under communism, it's just the opposite.
                -- J.K. Galbraith
Unknown person(s) stole the American flag from its pole in Etra Park sometime
between 3pm Jan 17 and 11:30 am Jan 20.  The flag is described as red, white
and blue, having 50 stars and was valued at $40.
                -- Windsor-Heights Herald "Police Blotter", Jan 28, 1987
Usually, when a lot of men get together, it's called a war.
                -- Mel Brooks, "The Listener"
War doesn't prove who's right, just who's left.
We tried to close Ohio's borders and ran into a Constitutional problem.
There's a provision in the Constitution that says you can't close your
borders to interstate commerce, and garbage is a form of interstate commerce.
                -- Ohio Lt. Governor Paul Leonard
Well, don't worry about it...  It's nothing.
                -- Lieutenant Kermit Tyler (Duty Officer of Shafter Information
                   Center, Hawaii), upon being informed that Private Joseph
                   Lockard had picked up a radar signal of what appeared to be
                   at least 50 planes soaring toward Oahu at almost 180 miles
                   per hour, December 7, 1941.
What does it take for Americans to do great things; to go to the moon, to
win wars, to dig canals linking oceans, to build railroads across a continent?
In independent thought about this question, Neil Armstrong and I concluded
that it takes a coincidence of four conditions, or in Neil's view, the
simultaneous peaking of four of the many cycles of American life.  First, a
base of technology must exist from which to do the thing to be done.  Second,
a period of national uneasiness about America's place in the scheme of human
activities must exist.  Third, some catalytic event must occur that focuses
the national attention upon the direction to proceed.  Finally, an articulate
and wise leader must sense these first three conditions and put forth with
words and action the great thing to be accomplished.  The motivation of young
Americans to do what needs to be done flows from such a coincidence of
conditions. ...  The Thomas Jeffersons, The Teddy Roosevelts, The John
Kennedys appear.  We must begin to create the tools of leadership which they,
and their young frontiersmen, will require to lead us onward and upward.
                -- Dr. Harrison H. Schmidt
What is status?
        Status is when the President calls you for your opinion.

Uh, no...
        Status is when the President calls you in to discuss a
        problem with him.

Uh, that still ain't right...
        STATUS is when you're in the Oval Office talking to the President,
        and the phone rings.  The President picks it up, listens for a
        minute, and hands it to you, saying, "It's for you."
What's a cult?  It just means not enough people to make a minority.
                -- Robert Altman
When a place gets crowded enough to require ID's, social collapse is not
far away.  It is time to go elsewhere.  The best thing about space travel
is that it made it possible to go elsewhere.
                -- R.A. Heinlein, "Time Enough For Love"
When some people decide it's time for everyone to make big changes,
it means that they want you to change first.
When the government bureau's remedies don't match your problem, you modify
the problem, not the remedy.
        Will Rogers, having paid too much income tax one year, tried in
vain to claim a rebate.  His numerous letters and queries remained
unanswered.  Eventually the form for the next year's return arrived.  In
the section marked "DEDUCTIONS," Rogers listed: "Bad debt, US Government
-- $40,000."
You first have to decide whether to use the short or the long form. The
short form is what the Internal Revenue Service calls "simplified", which
means it is designed for people who need the help of a Sears tax-preparation
expert to distinguish between their first and last names.  Here's the
complete text:

"(1) How much did you make?  (AMOUNT)
(2) How much did we here at the government take out?  (AMOUNT)
(3) Hey!  Sounds like we took too much!  So we're going to
     send an official government check for (ONE-FIFTEENTH OF
     THE AMOUNT WE TOOK) directly to the (YOUR LAST NAME)
     household at (YOUR ADDRESS), for you to spend in any way
     you please! Which just goes to show you, (YOUR FIRST
     NAME), that it pays to file the short form!"

The IRS wants you to use this form because it gets to keep most of your
money.  So unless you have pond silt for brains, you want the long form.
                -- Dave Barry, "Sweating Out Taxes"
The human instinct to censor thrives, as it always will, living in
irrepressible conflict with the human instinct to speak.  Outrage,
self-righteousness, and paranoia feed the maw of censorship.
Squelching speech, however, never reduces society's net paranoia
quotient; it simply redirects it, drives it underground, where it
festers into more dangerous hysterias.  In the words of Justice
Brandeis, "Men feared witches and burned women."
                -- Rodney Smolla, "Free Speech in an Open Society", p. 43.
Cautious, careful people always casting about to preserve their
reputation or social standards never can bring about reform.  Those
who are totally in earnest are willing to be anything or nothing in
the world's estimation, and publicly and privately, in season and
out, avow their sympathies with despised ideas and their advocates,
and bear the consequences.
                -- Susan B. Anthony (1873)
"Even if you want no state, or a minimal state, then you still have to
argue it point by point.  Especially since most minimalists want to
keep exactly the economic and police system that keeps them
privileged.  That's libertarians for you -- anarchists who want police
protection from their slaves!"
                -- Coyote, in Kim Stanley Robinson's "Green Mars"
186,282 miles per second:
        It isn't just a good idea, it's the law!
2180, U.S. History question:
        What 20th Century U.S. President was almost impeached and what
        office did he later hold?
Abbott's Admonitions:
        (1) If you have to ask, you're not entitled to know.
        (2) If you don't like the answer, you shouldn't have asked the question.
                -- Charles Abbot, dean, University of Virginia
Absentee, n.:
        A person with an income who has had the forethought to remove
        himself from the sphere of exaction.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Abstainer, n.:
        A weak person who yields to the temptation of denying himself a
        pleasure.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Absurdity, n.:
        A statement or belief manifestly inconsistent with one's own opinion.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Acquaintance, n:
        A person whom we know well enough to borrow from but not well
        enough to lend to.  A degree of friendship called slight when the
        object is poor or obscure, and intimate when he is rich or famous.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Adler's Distinction:
        Language is all that separates us from the lower animals,
        and from the bureaucrats.
Admiration, n.:
        Our polite recognition of another's resemblance to ourselves.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Adore, v.:
        To venerate expectantly.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
air, n.:
        A nutritious substance supplied by a bountiful Providence for the
        fattening of the poor.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Albrecht's Law:
        Social innovations tend to the level of minimum tolerable well-being.
Alden's Laws:
        (1)  Giving away baby clothes and furniture is the major cause
             of pregnancy.
        (2)  Always be backlit.
        (3)  Sit down whenever possible.
Allen's Axiom:
        When all else fails, read the instructions.
Alliance, n.:
        In international politics, the union of two thieves who have
        their hands so deeply inserted in each other's pocket that they cannot
        separately plunder a third.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Alone, adj.:
        In bad company.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Ambidextrous, adj.:
        Able to pick with equal skill a right-hand pocket or a left.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Andrea's Admonition:
        Never bestow profanity upon a driver who has wronged you.
        If you think his window is closed and he can't hear you,
        it isn't and he can.
Anoint, v.:
        To grease a king or other great functionary already sufficiently
        slippery.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Anthony's Law of Force:
        Don't force it; get a larger hammer.
Anthony's Law of the Workshop:
        Any tool when dropped, will roll into the least accessible
        corner of the workshop.

Corollary:
        On the way to the corner, any dropped tool will first strike
        your toes.
Arithmetic:
        An obscure art no longer practiced in the world's developed countries.
Armor's Axiom:
        Virtue is the failure to achieve vice.
Armstrong's Collection Law:
        If the check is truly in the mail,
        it is surely made out to someone else.
Arnold's Addendum:
        Anything not fitting into these categories causes cancer in rats.
Arnold's Laws of Documentation:
        (1) If it should exist, it doesn't.
        (2) If it does exist, it's out of date.
        (3) Only documentation for useless programs transcends the
            first two laws.
Arthur's Laws of Love:
        (1) People to whom you are attracted invariably think you
            remind them of someone else.
        (2) The love letter you finally got the courage to send will be
            delayed in the mail long enough for you to make a fool of
            yourself in person.
Authentic:
        Indubitably true, in somebody's opinion.
Backward conditioning:
        Putting saliva in a dog's mouth in an attempt to make a bell ring.
Bagdikian's Observation:
        Trying to be a first-rate reporter on the average American newspaper
        is like trying to play Bach's "St. Matthew Passion" on a ukelele.
Baker's First Law of Federal Geometry:
        A block grant is a solid mass of money surrounded on all sides by
        governors.
Ballistophobia:
        Fear of bullets;
Otophobia:
        Fear of opening one's eyes.
Peccatophobia:
        Fear of sinning.
Taphephobia:
        Fear of being buried alive.
Sitophobia:
        Fear of food.
Trichophobbia:
        Fear of hair.
Vestiphobia:
        Fear of clothing.
Banacek's Eighteenth Polish Proverb:
        The hippo has no sting, but the wise man would rather be sat upon
        by the bee.
Barach's Rule:
        An alcoholic is a person who drinks more than his own physician.
Barbara's Rules of Bitter Experience:
        (1) When you empty a drawer for his clothes
            and a shelf for his toiletries, the relationship ends.
        (2) When you finally buy pretty stationary
            to continue the correspondence, he stops writing.
Barker's Proof:
        Proofreading is more effective after publication.
Barometer, n.:
        An ingenious instrument which indicates what kind of weather we
        are having.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Barth's Distinction:
        There are two types of people: those who divide people into two
        types, and those who don't.
Baruch's Observation:
        If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
Basic Definitions of Science:
        If it's green or wiggles, it's biology.
        If it stinks, it's chemistry.
        If it doesn't work, it's physics.
Beauty:
        What's in your eye when you have a bee in your hand.
Beifeld's Principle:
        The probability of a young man meeting a desirable and receptive
        young female increases by pyramidical progression when he
        is already in the company of (1) a date, (2) his wife, (3) a
        better-looking and richer male friend.
                -- R. Beifeld
Bennett's Laws of Horticulture:
        (1) Houses are for people to live in.
        (2) Gardens are for plants to live in.
        (3) There is no such thing as a houseplant.
Benson's Dogma:
        ASCII is our god, and Unix is his profit.
Bershere's Formula for Failure:
        There are only two kinds of people who fail: those who
        listen to nobody... and those who listen to everybody.
beta test, v:
        To voluntarily entrust one's data, one's livelihood and one's
        sanity to hardware or software intended to destroy all three.
        In earlier days, virgins were often selected to beta test volcanos.
Bierman's Laws of Contracts:
        (1) In any given document, you can't cover all the "what if's".
        (2) Lawyers stay in business resolving all the unresolved "what if's".
        (3) Every resolved "what if" creates two unresolved "what if's".
Bilbo's First Law:
        You cannot count friends that are all packed up in barrels.
Bing's Rule:
        Don't try to stem the tide -- move the beach.
birth, n:
        The first and direst of all disasters.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Bloom's Seventh Law of Litigation:
        The judge's jokes are always funny.
Blore's Razor:
        Given a choice between two theories, take the one which is funnier.
Blutarsky's Axiom:
        Nothing is impossible for the man who will not listen to reason.
Boling's postulate:
        If you're feeling good, don't worry.  You'll get over it.
Bolub's Fourth Law of Computerdom:
        Project teams detest weekly progress reporting because it so
        vividly manifests their lack of progress.
Bombeck's Rule of Medicine:
        Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.
Boob's Law:
        You always find something in the last place you look.
Booker's Law:
        An ounce of application is worth a ton of abstraction.
Bore, n.:
        A person who talks when you wish him to listen.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Boren's Laws:
        (1) When in charge, ponder.
        (2) When in trouble, delegate.
        (3) When in doubt, mumble.
Boucher's Observation:
        He who blows his own horn always plays the music
        several octaves higher than originally written.
Bower's Law:
        Talent goes where the action is.
Bowie's Theorem:
        If an experiment works, you must be using the wrong equipment.
Bradley's Bromide:
        If computers get too powerful, we can organize
        them into a committee -- that will do them in.
Brady's First Law of Problem Solving:
        When confronted by a difficult problem, you can solve it more
        easily by reducing it to the question, "How would the Lone Ranger
        have handled this?"
brain, n:
        The apparatus with which we think that we think.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
brain, v: [as in "to brain"]
        To rebuke bluntly, but not pointedly; to dispel a source
        of error in an opponent.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Bride, n.:
        A woman with a fine prospect of happiness behind her.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Brogan's Constant:
        People tend to congregate in the back of the church and the
        front of the bus.
Brook's Law:
        Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later.
Brooke's Law:
        Whenever a system becomes completely defined, some damn fool
        discovers something which either abolishes the system or
        expands it beyond recognition.
Bubble Memory, n.:
        A derogatory term, usually referring to a person's intelligence.
        See also "vacuum tube".
Bucy's Law:
        Nothing is ever accomplished by a reasonable man.
Bug, n.:
        An aspect of a computer program which exists because the
        programmer was thinking about Jumbo Jacks or stock options when s/he
        wrote the program.

Fortunately, the second-to-last bug has just been fixed.
                -- Ray Simard
Bunker's Admonition:
        You cannot buy beer; you can only rent it.
Burke's Postulates:
        Anything is possible if you don't know what you are talking about.
        Don't create a problem for which you do not have the answer.
Burn's Hog Weighing Method:
        (1) Get a perfectly symmetrical plank and balance it across a sawhorse.
        (2) Put the hog on one end of the plank.
        (3) Pile rocks on the other end until the plank is again perfectly
            balanced.
        (4) Carefully guess the weight of the rocks.
                -- Robert Burns
Cabbage, n.:
        A familiar kitchen-garden vegetable about as large and wise as
        a man's head.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Cahn's Axiom:
        When all else fails, read the instructions.
Campbell's Law:
        Nature abhors a vacuous experimenter.
Canada Bill Jones's Motto:
        It's morally wrong to allow suckers to keep their money.

Canada Bill Jones's Supplement:
        A Smith and Wesson beats four aces.
Captain Penny's Law:
        You can fool all of the people some of the time, and
        some of the people all of the time, but you Can't Fool Mom.
Carson's Consolation:
        Nothing is ever a complete failure.
        It can always be used as a bad example.
Carson's Observation on Footwear:
        If the shoe fits, buy the other one too.
Carswell's Corollary:
        Whenever man comes up with a better mousetrap,
        nature invariably comes up with a better mouse.
cerebral atrophy, n:
        The phenomena which occurs as brain cells become weak and sick, and
impair the brain's performance.  An abundance of these "bad" cells can cause
symptoms related to senility, apathy, depression, and overall poor academic
performance.  A certain small number of brain cells will deteriorate due to
everday activity, but large amounts are weakened by intense mental effort
and the assimilation of difficult concepts.  Many college students become
victims of this dread disorder due to poor habits such as overstudying.

cerebral darwinism, n:
        The theory that the effects of cerebral atrophy can be reversed
through the purging action of heavy alcohol consumption.  Large amounts of
alcohol cause many brain cells to perish due to oxygen deprivation.  Through
the process of natural selection, the weak and sick brain cells will die
first, leaving only the healthy cells.  This wonderful process leaves the
imbiber with a healthier, more vibrant brain, and increases mental capacity.
Thus, the devastating effects of cerebral atrophy are reversed, and academic
performance actually increases beyond previous levels.
Chamberlain's Laws:
        (1) The big guys always win.
        (2) Everything tastes more or less like chicken.
checkuary, n:
        The thirteenth month of the year.  Begins New Year's Day and ends
        when a person stops absentmindedly writing the old year on his checks.
Cheit's Lament:
        If you help a friend in need, he is sure to remember you--
        the next time he's in need.
Chicago Transit Authority Rider's Rule #36:
        Never ever ask the tough looking gentleman wearing El Rukn headgear
        where he got his "pyramid powered pizza warmer".
                -- Chicago Reader 3/27/81
Chicago Transit Authority Rider's Rule #84:
        The CTA has complimentary pop-up timers available on request
        for overheated passengers.  When your timer pops up, the driver will
        cheerfully baste you.
                -- Chicago Reader 5/28/82
Chicken Soup:
        An ancient miracle drug containing equal parts of aureomycin,
        cocaine, interferon, and TLC.  The only ailment chicken soup
        can't cure is neurotic dependence on one's mother.
                -- Arthur Naiman, "Every Goy's Guide to Yiddish"
Chism's Law of Completion:
        The amount of time required to complete a government project is
        precisely equal to the length of time already spent on it.
Chisolm's First Corollary to Murphy's Second Law:
        When things just can't possibly get any worse, they will.
Churchill's Commentary on Man:
        Man will occasionally stumble over the truth,
        but most of the time he will pick himself up and continue on.
clairvoyant, n.:
        A person, commonly a woman, who has the power of seeing that
        which is invisible to her patron -- namely, that he is a blockhead.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Clarke's Conclusion:
        Never let your sense of morals interfere with doing the right thing.
Clay's Conclusion:
        Creativity is great, but plagiarism is faster.
Cohen's Law:
        There is no bottom to worse.
Cohn's Law:
        The more time you spend in reporting on what you are doing, the less
        time you have to do anything.  Stability is achieved when you spend
        all your time reporting on the nothing you are doing.
Cole's Law:
        Thinly sliced cabbage.
Colvard's Logical Premises:
        All probabilities are 50%.
        Either a thing will happen or it won't.

Colvard's Unconscionable Commentary:
        This is especially true when dealing with someone you're attracted to.

Grelb's Commentary:
        Likelihoods, however, are 90% against you.
Committee Rules:
        (1) Never arrive on time, or you will be stamped a beginner.
        (2) Don't say anything until the meeting is half over; this
            stamps you as being wise.
        (3) Be as vague as possible; this prevents irritating the
            others.
        (4) When in doubt, suggest that a subcommittee be appointed.
        (5) Be the first to move for adjournment; this will make you
            popular -- it's what everyone is waiting for.
Commoner's three laws of ecology:
        (1) No action is without side-effects.
        (2) Nothing ever goes away.
        (3) There is no free lunch.
Conference, n.:
        A special meeting in which the boss gathers subordinates to hear
        what they have to say, so long as it doesn't conflict with what
        he's already decided to do.
Confidant, confidante, n:
        One entrusted by A with the secrets of B, confided to himself by C.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Conjecture: All odd numbers are prime.
        Mathematician's Proof:
                3 is prime.  5 is prime.  7 is prime.  By induction, all
                odd numbers are prime.
        Physicist's Proof:
                3 is prime.  5 is prime.  7 is prime.  9 is experimental
                error.  11 is prime.  13 is prime ...
        Engineer's Proof:
                3 is prime.  5 is prime.  7 is prime.  9 is prime.
                11 is prime.  13 is prime ...
        Computer Scientists's Proof:
                3 is prime.  3 is prime.  3 is prime.  3 is prime...
Conway's Law:
        In any organization there will always be one person who knows
        what is going on.

        This person must be fired.
Coronation, n.:
        The ceremony of investing a sovereign with the outward and visible
        signs of his divine right to be blown skyhigh with a dynamite bomb.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Corry's Law:
        Paper is always strongest at the perforations.
Coward, n.:
        One who in a perilous emergency thinks with his legs.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Crenna's Law of Political Accountability:
        If you are the first to know about something bad, you are going to be
        held responsible for acting on it, regardless of your formal duties.
critic, n.:
        A person who boasts himself hard to please because nobody tries
        to please him.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Croll's Query:
        If tin whistles are made of tin, what are foghorns made of?
Cropp's Law:
        The amount of work done varies inversly with the time spent in the
        office.
Cruickshank's Law of Committees:
        If a committee is allowed to discuss a bad idea long enough, it
        will inevitably decide to implement the idea simply because so
        much work has already been done on it.
cursor address, n:
        "Hello, cursor!"
                -- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
curtation, n.:
        The enforced compression of a string in the fixed-length field
environment.
        The problem of fitting extremely variable-length strings such as names,
addresses, and item descriptions into fixed-length records is no trivial
matter.  Neglect of the subtle art of curtation has probably alienated more
people than any other aspect of data processing.  You order Mozart's "Don
Giovanni" from your record club, and they invoice you $24.95 for MOZ DONG.
The witless mapping of the sublime onto the ridiculous!  Equally puzzling is
the curtation that produces the same eight characters, THE BEST, whether you
order "The Best of Wagner", "The Best of Schubert", or "The Best of the Turds".
Similarly, wine lovers buying from computerized wineries twirl their glasses,
check their delivery notes, and inform their friends, "A rather innocent,
possibly overtruncated CAB SAUV 69 TAL."  The squeezing of fruit into 10
columns has yielded such memorable obscenities as COX OR PIP.  The examples
cited are real, and the curtational methodology which produced them is still
with us.

MOZ DONG n.
        Curtation of Don Giovanni by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Lorenzo da
Ponte, as performed by the computerized billing ensemble of the Internat'l
Preview Society, Great Neck (sic), N.Y.
                -- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
Cutler Webster's Law:
        There are two sides to every argument, unless a person
        is personally involved, in which case there is only one.
Cynic, n.:
        A blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not
        as they ought to be.  Hence the custom among the Scythians of plucking
        out a cynic's eyes to improve his vision.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Davis's Dictum:
        Problems that go away by themselves, come back by themselves.
Dawn, n.:
        The time when men of reason go to bed.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
default, n.:
        [Possibly from Black English "De fault wid dis system is you,
        mon."] The vain attempt to avoid errors by inactivity.  "Nothing will
        come of nothing: speak again." -- King Lear.
                -- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
Default, n.:
        The hardware's, of course.
Deliberation, n.:
        The act of examining one's bread to determine which side it is
        buttered on.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Dentist, n.:
        A Prestidigitator who, putting metal in one's mouth, pulls
        coins out of one's pockets.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Dibble's First Law of Sociology:
        Some do, some don't.
Dinner suggestion #302 (Hacker's De-lite):
        1 tin imported Brisling sardines in tomato sauce
        1 pouch Chocolate Malt Carnation Instant Breakfast
        1 carton milk
Dirksen's Three Laws of Politics:
        (1) Get elected.
        (2) Get re-elected.
        (3) Don't get mad, get even.
                -- Sen. Everett Dirksen
Distress, n.:
        A disease incurred by exposure to the prosperity of a friend.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Dow's Law:
        In a hierarchical organization, the higher the level,
        the greater the confusion.
Drakenberg's Discovery:
        If you can't seem to find your glasses,
        it's probably because you don't have them on.
Drew's Law of Highway Biology:
        The first bug to hit a clean windshield lands directly in front
        of your eyes.
Ducharme's Precept:
        Opportunity always knocks at the least opportune moment.

Ducharme's Axiom:
        If you view your problem closely enough you will recognize
        yourself as part of the problem.
Eagleson's Law:
        Any code of your own that you haven't looked at for six or more
        months, might as well have been written by someone else.  (Eagleson
        is an optimist, the real number is more like three weeks.)
economics, n.:
        Economics is the study of the value and meaning of J.K. Galbraith.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
economist, n:
        Someone who's good with figures, but doesn't have enough
        personality to become an accountant.
Egotism, n:
        Doing the New York Times crossword puzzle with a pen.

Egotist, n:
        A person of low taste, more interested in himself than me.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Ehrman's Commentary:
        (1) Things will get worse before they get better.
        (2) Who said things would get better?
Emerson's Law of Contrariness:
        Our chief want in life is somebody who shall make us do what we
        can.  Having found them, we shall then hate them for it.
Encyclopedia Salesmen:
        Invite them all in.  Nip out the back door.  Phone the police
        and tell them your house is being burgled.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
Engram, n.:
        1. The physical manifestation of human memory -- "the engram."
2. A particular memory in physical form.  [Usage note:  this term is no longer
in common use.  Prior to Wilson and Magruder's historic discovery, the nature
of the engram was a topic of intense speculation among neuroscientists,
psychologists, and even computer scientists.  In 1994 Professors M. R. Wilson
and W. V. Magruder, both of Mount St. Coax University in Palo Alto, proved
conclusively that the mammalian brain is hardwired to interpret a set of
thirty seven genetically transmitted cooperating TECO macros.  Human memory
was shown to reside in 1 million Q-registers as Huffman coded uppercase-only
ASCII strings.  Interest in the engram has declined substantially since that
time.]
                -- New Century Unabridged English Dictionary,
                   3rd edition, 2007 A.D.
Epperson's law:
        When a man says it's a silly, childish game, it's probably
        something his wife can beat him at.
Famous last words:
        (1) Don't unplug it, it will just take a moment to fix.
        (2) Let's take the shortcut, he can't see us from there.
        (3) What happens if you touch these two wires tog--
        (4) We won't need reservations.
        (5) It's always sunny there this time of the year.
        (6) Don't worry, it's not loaded.
        (7) They'd never (be stupid enough to) make him a manager.
        (8) Don't worry!  Women love it!
Famous, adj.:
        Conspicuously miserable.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
feature, n:
        A surprising property of a program.  Occasionaly documented.  To
        call a property a feature sometimes means the author did not
        consider that case, and the program makes an unexpected, though
        not necessarily wrong response.  See BUG.  "That's not a bug, it's
        a feature!"  A bug can be changed to a feature by documenting it.
Ferguson's Precept:
        A crisis is when you can't say "let's forget the whole thing."
Finagle's Creed:
        Science is true.  Don't be misled by facts.
Finagle's Eighth Law:
        If an experiment works, something has gone wrong.

Finagle's Ninth Law:
        No matter what results are expected, someone is always willing to
        fake it.

Finagle's Tenth Law:
        No matter what the result someone is always eager to misinterpret it.

Finagle's Eleventh Law:
        No matter what occurs, someone believes it happened according to
        his pet theory.
Finagle's First Law:
        If an experiment works, something has gone wrong.
Finagle's First Law:
        To study a subject best, understand it thoroughly before you start.

Finagle's Second Law:
        Always keep a record of data -- it indicates you've been working.

Finagle's Fourth Law:
        Once a job is fouled up, anything done to improve it only makes
        it worse.

Finagle's Fifth Law:
        Always draw your curves, then plot your readings.

Finagle's Sixth Law:
        Don't believe in miracles -- rely on them.
Finagle's Second Law:
        No matter what the anticipated result, there will always be
        someone eager to (a) misinterpret it, (b) fake it, or (c) believe it
        happened according to his own pet theory.
Finagle's Seventh Law:
        The perversity of the universe tends toward a maximum.
Finagle's Third Law:
        In any collection of data, the figure most obviously correct,
        beyond all need of checking, is the mistake

Corollaries:
        (1) Nobody whom you ask for help will see it.
        (2) The first person who stops by, whose advice you really
            don't want to hear, will see it immediately.
Fine's Corollary:
        Functionality breeds Contempt.
Finster's Law:
        A closed mouth gathers no feet.
First Law of Bicycling:
        No matter which way you ride, it's uphill and against the wind.
Five rules for eternal misery:
        (1) Always try to exhort others to look upon you favorably.
        (2) Make lots of assumptions about situations and be sure to
            treat these assumptions as though they are reality.
        (3) Then treat each new situation as though it's a crisis.
        (4) Live in the past and future only (become obsessed with
            how much better things might have been or how much worse
            things might become).
        (5) Occasionally stomp on yourself for being so stupid as to
            follow the first four rules.
Flon's Law:
        There is not now, and never will be, a language in
        which it is the least bit difficult to write bad programs.
flowchart, n. & v.:
        [From flow "to ripple down in rich profusion, as hair" + chart
"a cryptic hidden-treasure map designed to mislead the uninitiated."]
1. n. The solution, if any, to a class of Mascheroni construction
problems in which given algorithms require geometrical representation
using only the 35 basic ideograms of the ANSI template.  2. n. Neronic
doodling while the system burns.  3. n. A low-cost substitute for
wallpaper.  4. n.  The innumerate misleading the illiterate.  "A
thousand pictures is worth ten lines of code." -- The Programmer's
Little Red Vade Mecum, Mao Tse T'umps.  5. v.intrans. To produce
flowcharts with no particular object in mind.  6. v.trans. To obfuscate
(a problem) with esoteric cartoons.
                -- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
Flugg's Law:
        When you need to knock on wood is when you realize
        that the world is composed of vinyl, naugahyde and aluminum.
Fog Lamps, n.:
        Excessively (often obnoxiously) bright lamps mounted on the fronts
        of automobiles; used on dry, clear nights to indicate that the
        driver's brain is in a fog.  See also "Idiot Lights".
Fortune's Rules for Memo Wars: #2

Given the incredible advances in sociocybernetics and telepsychology over
the last few years, we are now able to completely understand everything that
the author of an memo is trying to say.  Thanks to modern developments
in electrocommunications like notes, vnews, and electricity, we have an
incredible level of interunderstanding the likes of which civilization has
never known.  Thus, the possibility of your misinterpreting someone else's
memo is practically nil.  Knowing this, anyone who accuses you of having
done so is a liar, and should be treated accordingly.  If you *do* understand
the memo in question, but have absolutely nothing of substance to say, then
you have an excellent opportunity for a vicious ad hominem attack.  In fact,
the only *inappropriate* times for an ad hominem attack are as follows:

        1: When you agree completely with the author of an memo.
        2: When the author of the original memo is much bigger than you are.
        3: When replying to one of your own memos.
Fourth Law of Applied Terror:
        The night before the English History mid-term, your Biology
        instructor will assign 200 pages on planaria.

Corollary:
        Every instructor assumes that you have nothing else to do except
        study for that instructor's course.
Fresco's Discovery:
        If you knew what you were doing you'd probably be bored.
Fried's 1st Rule:
        Increased automation of clerical function
        invariably results in increased operational costs.
Frobnicate, v.:
        To manipulate or adjust, to tweak.  Derived from FROBNITZ. Usually
abbreviated to FROB.  Thus one has the saying "to frob a frob." See TWEAK
and TWIDDLE.  Usage: FROB, TWIDDLE, and TWEAK sometimes connote points along
a continuum.  FROB connotes aimless manipulation; TWIDDLE connotes gross
manipulation, often a coarse search for a proper setting; TWEAK connotes
fine-tuning.  If someone is turning a knob on an oscilloscope, then if he's
carefully adjusting it he is probably tweaking it; if he is just turning it
but looking at the screen he is probably twiddling it; but if he's just
doing it because turning a knob is fun, he's frobbing it.
Fuch's Warning:
        If you actually look like your passport photo, you aren't well
        enough to travel.
Fudd's First Law of Opposition:
        Push something hard enough and it will fall over.
Fun Facts, #14:
        In table tennis, whoever gets 21 points first wins.  That's how
        it once was in baseball -- whoever got 21 runs first won.
Galbraith's Law of Human Nature:
        Faced with the choice between changing one's mind and proving that
        there is no need to do so, almost everybody gets busy on the proof.
genealogy, n.:
        An account of one's descent from an ancestor
        who did not particularly care to trace his own.
                -- Ambrose Bierce
Gerrold's Laws of Infernal Dynamics:
        (1) An object in motion will always be headed in the wrong direction.
        (2) An object at rest will always be in the wrong place.
        (3) The energy required to change either one of these states
           will always be more than you wish to expend, but never so
           much as to make the task totally impossible.
Gilbert's Discovery:
        Any attempt to use the new super glues results in the two pieces
        sticking to your thumb and index finger rather than to each other.
Ginsberg's Theorem:
        (1) You can't win.
        (2) You can't break even.
        (3) You can't even quit the game.

Freeman's Commentary on Ginsberg's theorem:
        Every major philosophy that attempts to make life seem
        meaningful is based on the negation of one part of Ginsberg's
        Theorem.  To wit:

        (1) Capitalism is based on the assumption that you can win.
        (2) Socialism is based on the assumption that you can break even.
        (3) Mysticism is based on the assumption that you can quit the game.
Ginsburg's Law:
        At the precise moment you take off your shoe in a shoe store, your
        big toe will pop out of your sock to see what's going on.
Glib's Fourth Law of Unreliability:
        Investment in reliability will increase until it exceeds the
        probable cost of errors, or until someone insists on getting
        some useful work done.
Goda's Truism:
        By the time you get to the point where you can make ends meet,
        somebody moves the ends.
Godwin's Law (prov.  [Usenet]):
        As a Usenet discussion grows longer, the probability of a
        comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches one." There is a
        tradition in many groups that, once this occurs, that thread is
        over, and whoever mentioned the Nazis has automatically lost
        whatever argument was in progress.  Godwin's Law thus guarantees
        the existence of an upper bound on thread length in those groups.
Gold's Law:
        If the shoe fits, it's ugly.
Gold, n.:
        A soft malleable metal relatively scarce in distribution.  It
        is mined deep in the earth by poor men who then give it to rich
        men who immediately bury it back in the earth in great prisons,
        although gold hasn't done anything to them.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
Goldenstern's Rules:
        (1) Always hire a rich attorney
        (2) Never buy from a rich salesman.
Gomme's Laws:
        (1) A backscratcher will always find new itches.
        (2) Time accelerates.
        (3) The weather at home improves as soon as you go away.
Gordon's first law:
        If a research project is not worth doing, it is not worth doing well.
Gordon's Law:
        If you think you have the solution, the question was poorly phrased.
Government's Law:
        There is an exception to all laws.
Grabel's Law:
        2 is not equal to 3 -- not even for large values of 2.
Grandpa Charnock's Law:
        You never really learn to swear until you learn to drive.

        [I thought it was when your kids learned to drive.  Ed.]
Gray's Law of Programming:
        `_n+1' trivial tasks are expected to be accomplished in the same
        time as `_n' tasks.

Logg's Rebuttal to Gray's Law:
        `_n+1' trivial tasks take twice as long as `_n' trivial tasks.
Green's Law of Debate:
        Anything is possible if you don't know what you're talking about.
Greener's Law:
        Never argue with a man who buys ink by the barrel.
Grelb's Reminder:
        Eighty percent of all people consider themselves to be above
        average drivers.
Griffin's Thought:
        When you starve with a tiger, the tiger starves last.
Grinnell's Law of Labor Laxity:
        At all times, for any task, you have not got enough done today.
Gumperson's Law:
        The probability of a given event occurring is inversely
        proportional to its desirability.
Gunter's Airborne Discoveries:
        (1)  When you are served a meal aboard an aircraft,
             the aircraft will encounter turbulence.
        (2)  The strength of the turbulence
             is directly proportional to the temperature of your coffee.
gyroscope, n.:
        A wheel or disk mounted to spin rapidly about an axis and also
        free to rotate about one or both of two axes perpindicular to
        each other and the axis of spin so that a rotation of one of the
        two mutually perpendicular axes results from application of
        torque to the other when the wheel is spinning and so that the
        entire apparatus offers considerable opposition depending on
        the angular momentum to any torque that would change the direction
        of the axis of spin.
                -- Webster's Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary
H. L. Mencken's Law:
        Those who can -- do.
        Those who can't -- teach.

Martin's Extension:
        Those who cannot teach -- administrate.
Hacker's Law:
        The belief that enhanced understanding will necessarily stir
        a nation to action is one of mankind's oldest illusions.
Hacker's Quicky #313:
        Sour Cream -n- Onion Potato Chips
        Microwave Egg Roll
        Chocolate Milk
hacker, n.:
        Originally, any person with a knack for coercing stubborn inanimate
        things; hence, a person with a happy knack, later contracted by the
        mythical philosopher Frisbee Frobenius to the common usage, 'hack'.
        In olden times, upon completion of some particularly atrocious body
        of coding that happened to work well, culpable programmers would gather
        in a small circle around a first edition of Knuth's Best Volume I by
        candlelight, and proceed to get very drunk while sporadically rending
        the following ditty:

                Hacker's Fight Song

                He's a Hack!  He's a Hack!
                He's a guy with the happy knack!
                Never bungles, never shirks,
                Always gets his stuff to work!

All take a drink (important!)
half-done, n.:
        This is the best way to eat a kosher dill -- when it's still crunchy,
        light green, yet full of garlic flavor.  The difference between this
        and the typical soggy dark green cucumber corpse is like the
        difference between life and death.

        You may find it difficult to find a good half-done kosher dill there
        in Seattle, so what you should do is take a cab out to the airport,
        fly to New York, take the JFK Express to Jay Street-Borough Hall,
        transfer to an uptown F, get off at East Broadway, walk north on
        Essex (along the park), make your first left onto Hester Street, walk
        about fifteen steps, turn ninety degrees left, and stop.  Say to the
        man, "Let me have a nice half-done."  Worth the trouble, wasn't it?
                -- Arthur Naiman, "Every Goy's Guide to Yiddish"
Hand, n.:
        A singular instrument worn at the end of a human arm and
        commonly thrust into somebody's pocket.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Hanlon's Razor:
        Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained
        by stupidity.
Hanson's Treatment of Time:
        There are never enough hours in a day, but always too many days
        before Saturday.
Happiness, n.:
        An agreeable sensation arising from contemplating the misery of another.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Harriet's Dining Observation:
        In every restaurant, the hardness of the butter pats
        increases in direct proportion to the softness of the bread.
Harris's Lament:
        All the good ones are taken.
Harrisberger's Fourth Law of the Lab:
        Experience is directly proportional to the amount of equipment ruined.
Harrison's Postulate:
        For every action, there is an equal and opposite criticism.
Hartley's First Law:
        You can lead a horse to water, but if you can get him to float
        on his back, you've got something.
Hatred, n.:
        A sentiment appropriate to the occasion of another's superiority.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Hawkeye's Conclusion:
        It's not easy to play the clown when you've got to run the whole
        circus.
Heaven, n.:
        A place where the wicked cease from troubling you with talk of
        their personal affairs, and the good listen with attention while you
        expound your own.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Heller's Law:
        The first myth of management is that it exists.

Johnson's Corollary:
        Nobody really knows what is going on anywhere within the
        organization.
Hempstone's Question:
        If you have to travel on the Titanic, why not go first class?
Herth's Law:
        He who turns the other cheek too far gets it in the neck.
Hewett's Observation:
        The rudeness of a bureaucrat is inversely proportional to his or
        her position in the governmental hierarchy and to the number of
        peers similarly engaged.
Hildebrant's Principle:
        If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there.
Hippogriff, n.:
        An animal (now extinct) which was half horse and half griffin.
        The griffin was itself a compound creature, half lion and half eagle.
        The hippogriff was actually, therefore, only one quarter eagle, which
        is two dollars and fifty cents in gold.  The study of zoology is full
        of surprises.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Hitchcock's Staple Principle:
        The stapler runs out of staples only while you are trying to
        staple something.
Hlade's Law:
        If you have a difficult task, give it to a lazy person --
        they will find an easier way to do it.
Hoare's Law of Large Problems:
        Inside every large problem is a small problem struggling to get out.
Hoffer's Discovery:
        The grand act of a dying institution is to issue a newly
        revised, enlarged edition of the policies and procedures manual.
Hofstadter's Law:
        It always takes longer than you expect, even when you take
        Hofstadter's Law into account.
Honorable, adj.:
        Afflicted with an impediment in one's reach.  In legislative
        bodies, it is customary to mention all members as honorable; as,
        "the honorable gentleman is a scurvy cur."
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Horner's Five Thumb Postulate:
        Experience varies directly with equipment ruined.
Horngren's Observation:
        Among economists, the real world is often a special case.
HOW YOU CAN TELL THAT IT'S GOING TO BE A ROTTEN DAY:
        #1040 Your income tax refund cheque bounces.
HOW YOU CAN TELL THAT IT'S GOING TO BE A ROTTEN DAY:
        #15 Your pet rock snaps at you.
HOW YOU CAN TELL THAT IT'S GOING TO BE A ROTTEN DAY:
        #32: You call your answering service and they've never heard of you.
Howe's Law:
        Everyone has a scheme that will not work.
Hubbard's Law:
        Don't take life too seriously; you won't get out of it alive.
Hurewitz's Memory Principle:
        The chance of forgetting something is directly proportional
        to... to... uh.....
IBM's original motto:
        Cogito ergo vendo; vendo ergo sum.
IBM:
        [International Business Machines Corp.]  Also known as Itty Bitty
        Machines or The Lawyer's Friend.  The dominant force in computer
        marketing, having supplied worldwide some 75% of all known hardware
        and 10% of all software.  To protect itself from the litigious envy
        of less successful organizations, such as the US government, IBM
        employs 68% of all known ex-Attorneys' General.
IBM:
        I've Been Moved
        Idiots Become Managers
        Idiots Buy More
        Impossible to Buy Machine
        Incredibly Big Machine
        Industry's Biggest Mistake
        International Brotherhood of Mercenaries
        It Boggles the Mind
        It's Better Manually
        Itty-Bitty Machines
IBM:
        It may be slow, but it's hard to use.
Idiot, n.:
        A member of a large and powerful tribe whose influence in human
        affairs has always been dominant and controlling.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Iles's Law:
        There is always an easier way to do it.  When looking directly
        at the easy way, especially for long periods, you will not see it.
        Neither will Iles.
Imbesi's Law with Freeman's Extension:
        In order for something to become clean, something else must
        become dirty; but you can get everything dirty without getting
        anything clean.
Impartial, adj.:
        Unable to perceive any promise of personal advantage from
        espousing either side of a controversy or adopting either of two
        conflicting opinions.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Incumbent, n.:
        Person of liveliest interest to the outcumbents.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Interpreter, n.:
        One who enables two persons of different languages to
        understand each other by repeating to each what it would have been to
        the interpreter's advantage for the other to have said.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Issawi's Laws of Progress:
        The Course of Progress:
                Most things get steadily worse.
        The Path of Progress:
                A shortcut is the longest distance between two points.
"It's in process":
        So wrapped up in red tape that the situation is almost hopeless.
Jacquin's Postulate on Democratic Government:
        No man's life, liberty, or property are safe while the
        legislature is in session.
Jenkinson's Law:
        It won't work.
Jim Nasium's Law:
        In a large locker room with hundreds of lockers, the few people
        using the facility at any one time will all have lockers next to
        each other so that everybody is cramped.
Johnny Carson's Definition:
        The smallest interval of time known to man is that which occurs
        in Manhattan between the traffic signal turning green and the
        taxi driver behind you blowing his horn.
Johnson's First Law:
        When any mechanical contrivance fails, it will do so at the
        most inconvenient possible time.
Johnson's law:
        Systems resemble the organizations that create them.
Juall's Law on Nice Guys:
        Nice guys don't always finish last; sometimes they don't finish.
        Sometimes they don't even get a chance to start!
Kafka's Law:
        In the fight between you and the world, back the world.
                -- Franz Kafka, "RS's 1974 Expectation of Days"
Karlson's Theorem of Snack Food Packages:
        For all P, where P is a package of snack food, P is a SINGLE-SERVING
        package of snack food.

Gibson the Cat's Corrolary:
        For all L, where L is a package of lunch meat, L is Gibson's package
        of lunch meat.
Kaufman's First Law of Party Physics:
        Population density is inversely proportional
        to the square of the distance from the keg.
Kaufman's Law:
        A policy is a restrictive document to prevent a recurrence
        of a single incident, in which that incident is never mentioned.
Kennedy's Market Theorem:
        Given enough inside information and unlimited credit,
        you've got to go broke.
Kent's Heuristic:
        Look for it first where you'd most like to find it.
Kettering's Observation:
        Logic is an organized way of going wrong with confidence.
Kime's Law for the Reward of Meekness:
        Turning the other cheek merely ensures two bruised cheeks.
Kington's Law of Perforation:
        If a straight line of holes is made in a piece of paper, such
        as a sheet of stamps or a check, that line becomes the strongest
        part of the paper.
Kinkler's First Law:
        Responsibility always exceeds authority.

Kinkler's Second Law:
        All the easy problems have been solved.
Kliban's First Law of Dining:
        Never eat anything bigger than your head.
Knebel's Law:
        It is now proved beyond doubt that smoking is one of the leading
        causes of statistics.
Kramer's Law:
        You can never tell which way the train went by looking at the tracks.
Labor, n.:
        One of the processes by which A acquires property for B.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Lackland's Laws:
        (1) Never be first.
        (2) Never be last.
        (3) Never volunteer for anything
Langsam's Laws:
        (1) Everything depends.
        (2) Nothing is always.
        (3) Everything is sometimes.
Larkinson's Law:
        All laws are basically false.
Laura's Law:
        No child throws up in the bathroom.
Law of Selective Gravity:
        An object will fall so as to do the most damage.

Jenning's Corollary:
        The chance of the bread falling with the buttered side
        down is directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.

Law of the Perversity of Nature:
        You cannot determine beforehand which side of the bread to butter.
Lawyer's Rule:
        When the law is against you, argue the facts.
        When the facts are against you, argue the law.
        When both are against you, call the other lawyer names.
Lazlo's Chinese Relativity Axiom:
        No matter how great your triumphs or how tragic your defeats --
        approximately one billion Chinese couldn't care less.
learning curve, n.:
        An astonishing new theory, discovered by management consultants
        in the 1970's, asserting that the more you do something the
        quicker you can do it.
Lee's Law:
        Mother said there would be days like this,
        but she never said that there'd be so many!
Leibowitz's Rule:
        When hammering a nail, you will never hit your
        finger if you hold the hammer with both hands.
Lewis's Law of Travel:
        The first piece of luggage out of the chute doesn't belong to anyone,
        ever.
Liar, n.:
        A lawyer with a roving commission.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Lieberman's Law:
        Everybody lies, but it doesn't matter since nobody listens.
Lockwood's Long Shot:
        The chances of getting eaten up by a lion on Main Street
        aren't one in a million, but once would be enough.
love, n.:
        When it's growing, you don't mind watering it with a few tears.
Lowery's Law:
        If it jams -- force it.  If it breaks, it needed replacing anyway.
Lubarsky's Law of Cybernetic Entomology:
        There's always one more bug.
Mad, adj.:
        Affected with a high degree of intellectual independence ...
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Madison's Inquiry:
        If you have to travel on the Titanic, why not go first class?
MAFIA, n:
        [Acronym for Mechanized Applications in Forced Insurance
Accounting.] An extensive network with many on-line and offshore
subsystems running under OS, DOS, and IOS.  MAFIA documentation is
rather scanty, and the MAFIA sales office exhibits that testy
reluctance to bona fide inquiries which is the hallmark of so many DP
operations.  From the little that has seeped out, it would appear that
MAFIA operates under a non-standard protocol, OMERTA, a tight-lipped
variant of SNA, in which extended handshakes also perform complex
security functions.  The known timesharing aspects of MAFIA point to a
more than usually autocratic operating system.  Screen prompts carry an
imperative, nonrefusable weighting (most menus offer simple YES/YES
options, defaulting to YES) that precludes indifference or delay.
Uniquely, all editing under MAFIA is performed centrally, using a
powerful rubout feature capable of erasing files, filors, filees, and
entire nodal aggravations.
                -- Stan Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
Magary's Principle:
        When there is a public outcry to cut deadwood and fat from any
        government bureaucracy, it is the deadwood and the fat that do
        the cutting, and the public's services are cut.
Magnet, n.:
        Something acted upon by magnetism.

Magnetism, n.:
        Something acting upon a magnet.

The two definition immediately foregoing are condensed from the works of
one thousand eminent scientists, who have illuminated the subject with
a great white light, to the inexpressible advancement of human knowledge.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Magpie, n.:
        A bird whose theivish disposition suggested to someone that it
        might be taught to talk.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Maier's Law:
        If the facts do not conform to the theory, they must be disposed of.
                -- N.R. Maier, "American Psychologist", March 1960

Corollaries:
        (1) The bigger the theory, the better.
        (2) The experiment may be considered a success if no more than
            50% of the observed measurements must be discarded to
            obtain a correspondence with the theory.
Main's Law:
        For every action there is an equal and opposite government program.
Maintainer's Motto:
        If we can't fix it, it ain't broke.
Major premise:
        Sixty men can do sixty times as much work as one man.
Minor premise:
        A man can dig a posthole in sixty seconds.
Conclusion:
        Sixty men can dig a posthole in one second.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"

Secondary Conclusion:
        Do you realize how many holes there would be if people
        would just take the time to take the dirt out of them?
Male, n.:
        A member of the unconsidered, or negligible sex.  The male of the
        human race is commonly known to the female as Mere Man.  The genus
        has two varieties:  good providers and bad providers.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Malek's Law:
        Any simple idea will be worded in the most complicated way.
Manly's Maxim:
        Logic is a systematic method of coming to the wrong conclusion
        with confidence.
Mark's Dental-Chair Discovery:
        Dentists are incapable of asking questions that require a
        simple yes or no answer.
Maryann's Law:
        You can always find what you're not looking for.
Maslow's Maxim:
        If the only tool you have is a hammer, you treat everything like
        a nail.
Mason's First Law of Synergism:
        The one day you'd sell your soul for something, souls are a glut.
mathematician, n.:
        Some one who believes imaginary things appear right before your _i's.
Matz's Law:
        A conclusion is the place where you got tired of thinking.
May's Law:
        The quality of correlation is inversly proportional to the density
        of control.  (The fewer the data points, the smoother the curves.)
McEwan's Rule of Relative Importance:
        When traveling with a herd of elephants, don't be the first to
        lie down and rest.
McGowan's Madison Avenue Axiom:
        If an item is advertised as "under $50", you can bet it's not $19.95.
Meade's Maxim:
        Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everyone else.
Meader's Law:
        Whatever happens to you, it will previously
        have happened to everyone you know, only more so.
Mencken and Nathan's Fifteenth Law of The Average American:
        The worst actress in the company is always the manager's wife.
Mencken and Nathan's Ninth Law of The Average American:
        The quality of a champagne is judged by the amount of noise the
        cork makes when it is popped.
Mencken and Nathan's Second Law of The Average American:
        All the postmasters in small towns read all the postcards.
Mencken and Nathan's Sixteenth Law of The Average American:
        Milking a cow is an operation demanding a special talent that
        is possessed only by yokels, and no person born in a large city can
        never hope to acquire it.
Meskimen's Law:
        There's never time to do it right, but there's always time to
        do it over.
methionylglutaminylarginyltyrosylglutamylserylleucylphenylalanylalanylglutamin-
ylleucyllysylglutamylarginyllysylglutamylglycylalanylphenylalanylvalylprolyl-
phenylalanylvalylthreonylleucylglycylaspartylprolylglycylisoleucylglutamylglu-
taminylserylleucyllysylisoleucylaspartylthreonylleucylisoleucylglutamylalanyl-
glycylalanylaspartylalanylleucylglutamylleucylglycylisoleucylprolylphenylala-
nylserylaspartylprolylleucylalanylaspartylglycylprolylthreonylisoleucylgluta-
minylasparaginylalanylthreonylleucylarginylalanylphenylalanylalanylalanylgly-
cylvalylthreonylprolylalanylglutaminylcysteinylphenylalanylglutamylmethionyl-
leucylalanylleucylisoleucylarginylglutaminyllysylhistidylprolylthreonylisoleu-
cylprolylisoleucylglycylleucylleucylmethionyltyrosylalanylasparaginylleucylva-
lylphenylalanylasparaginyllysylglycylisoleucylaspartylglutamylphenylalanyltyro-
sylalanylglutaminylcysteinylglutamyllysylvalylglycylvalylaspartylserylvalylleu-
cylvalylalanylaspartylvalylprolylvalylglutaminylglutamylserylalanylprolylphe-
nylalanylarginylglutaminylalanylalanylleucylarginylhistidylasparaginylvalylala-
nylprolylisoleucylphenylalanylisoleucylcysteinylprolylprolylaspartylalanylas-
partylaspartylaspartylleucylleucylarginylglutaminylisoleucylalanylseryltyrosyl-
glycylarginylglycyltyrosylthreonyltyrosylleucylleucylserylarginylalanylglycyl-
valylthreonylglycylalanylglutamylasparaginylarginylalanylalanylleucylprolylleu-
cylasparaginylhistidylleucylvalylalanyllysylleucyllysylglutamyltyrosylasparagi-
nylalanylalanylprolylprolylleucylglutaminylglycylphenylalanylglycylisoleucylse-
rylalanylprolylaspartylglutaminylvalyllysylalanylalanylisoleucylaspartylalanyl-
glycylalanylalanylglycylalanylisoleucylserylglycylserylalanylisoleucylvalylly-
sylisoleucylisoleucylglutamylglutaminylhistidylasparaginylisoleucylglutamylpro-
lylglutamyllysylmethionylleucylalanylalanylleucyllysylvalylphenylalanylvalyl-
glutaminylprolylmethionyllysylalanylalanylthreonylarginylserine, n.:
        The chemical name for tryptophan synthetase A protein, a
        1,913-letter enzyme with 267 amino acids.
                -- Mrs. Byrne's Dictionary of Unusual, Obscure, and
                   Preposterous Words
Miksch's Law:
        If a string has one end, then it has another end.
Miller's Slogan:
        Lose a few, lose a few.
Misfortune, n.:
        The kind of fortune that never misses.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Mitchell's Law of Committees:
        Any simple problem can be made insoluble if enough meetings are
        held to discuss it.
Mix's Law:
        There is nothing more permanent than a temporary building.
        There is nothing more permanent than a temporary tax.
modem, adj.:
        Up-to-date, new-fangled, as in "Thoroughly Modem Millie."  An
        unfortunate byproduct of kerning.

        [That's sic!]
Molecule, n.:
        The ultimate, indivisible unit of matter.  It is distinguished
        from the corpuscle, also the ultimate, indivisible unit of matter, by a
        closer resemblance to the atom, also the ultimate, indivisible unit of
        matter ... The ion differs from the molecule, the corpuscle and the
        atom in that it is an ion ...
        -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Mollison's Bureaucracy Hypothesis:
        If an idea can survive a bureaucratic review and be implemented
        it wasn't worth doing.
Moore's Constant:
        Everybody sets out to do something, and everybody
        does something, but no one does what he sets out to do.
Morton's Law:
        If rats are experimented upon, they will develop cancer.
Mosher's Law of Software Engineering:
        Don't worry if it doesn't work right.  If everything did, you'd
        be out of a job.
Mr. Cole's Axiom:
        The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the
        population is growing.
Murphy's Law of Research:
        Enough research will tend to support your theory.
Murphy's Laws:
        (1) If anything can go wrong, it will.
        (2) Nothing is as easy as it looks.
        (3) Everything takes longer than you think it will.
Murray's Rule:
        Any country with "democratic" in the title isn't.
Nachman's Rule:
        When it comes to foreign food, the less authentic the better.
                -- Gerald Nachman
nerd pack, n.:
        Plastic pouch worn in breast pocket to keep pens from soiling
        clothes.  Nerd's position in engineering hierarchy can be measured
        by number of pens, grease pencils, and rulers bristling        in his pack.
Newlan's Truism:
        An "acceptable" level of unemployment means that the
        government economist to whom it is acceptable still has a job.
Newman's Discovery:
        Your best dreams may not come true; fortunately, neither will
        your worst dreams.
Newton's Law of Gravitation:
        What goes up must come down.  But don't expect it to come down where
        you can find it.  Murphy's Law applies to Newton's.
Newton's Little-Known Seventh Law:
        A bird in the hand is safer than one overhead.
Nick the Greek's Law of Life:
        All things considered, life is 9 to 5 against.
November, n.:
        The eleventh twelfth of a weariness.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Novinson's Revolutionary Discovery:
        When comes the revolution, things will be different --
        not better, just different.
Nowlan's Theory:
        He who hesitates is not only lost, but several miles from
        the next freeway exit.
Nusbaum's Rule:
        The more pretentious the corporate name, the smaller the
        organization.  (For instance, the Murphy Center for the
        Codification of Human and Organizational Law, contrasted
        to IBM, GM, and AT&T.)
O'Brian's Law:
        Everything is always done for the wrong reasons.
O'Reilly's Law of the Kitchen:
        Cleanliness is next to impossible
O'Toole's commentary on Murphy's Law:
        Murphy was an optimist.
Occam's eraser:
        The philosophical principle that even the simplest
        solution is bound to have something wrong with it.
Ogden's Law:
        The sooner you fall behind, the more time you have to catch up.
Oliver's Law:
        Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
Olmstead's Law:
        After all is said and done, a hell of a lot more is said than done.
On the subject of C program indentation:
        "In My Egotistical Opinion, most people's C programs should be
        indented six feet downward and covered with dirt."
                -- Blair P. Houghton
Once, adv.:
        Enough.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
optimist, n.:
        A proponent of the belief that black is white.

        A pessimist asked God for relief.
        "Ah, you wish me to restore your hope and cheerfulness," said God.
        "No," replied the petitioner, "I wish you to create something that
would justify them."
        "The world is all created," said God, "but you have overlooked
something -- the mortality of the optimist."
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Osborn's Law:
        Variables won't; constants aren't.
Ozman's Laws:
        (1)  If someone says he will do something "without fail," he won't.
        (2)  The more people talk on the phone, the less money they make.
        (3)  People who go to conferences are the ones who shouldn't.
        (4)  Pizza always burns the roof of your mouth.
Pandora's Rule:
        Never open a box you didn't close.
Pardo's First Postulate:
        Anything good in life is either illegal, immoral, or fattening.

Arnold's Addendum:
        Everything else causes cancer in rats.
Parkinson's Fifth Law:
        If there is a way to delay in important decision, the good
        bureaucracy, public or private, will find it.
Parkinson's Fourth Law:
        The number of people in any working group tends to increase
        regardless of the amount of work to be done.
Paul's Law:
        In America, it's not how much an item costs, it's how much you save.
Paul's Law:
        You can't fall off the floor.
Peace, n.:
        In international affairs, a period of cheating between two
        periods of fighting.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Pecor's Health-Food Principle:
        Never eat rutabaga on any day of the week that has a "y" in it.
Peers's Law:
        The solution to a problem changes the nature of the problem.
People's Action Rules:
        (1) Some people who can, shouldn't.
        (2) Some people who should, won't.
        (3) Some people who shouldn't, will.
        (4) Some people who can't, will try, regardless.
        (5) Some people who shouldn't, but try, will then blame others.
Peter's Law of Substitution:
        Look after the molehills, and the
        mountains will look after themselves.

Peter's Principle of Success:
        Get up one time more than you're knocked down.
Peterson's Admonition:
        When you think you're going down for the third time --
        just remember that you may have counted wrong.
Peterson's Rules:
        (1) Trucks that overturn on freeways are filled with something sticky.
        (2) No cute baby in a carriage is ever a girl when called one.
        (3) Things that tick are not always clocks.
        (4) Suicide only works when you're bluffing.
Pickle's Law:
        If Congress must do a painful thing,
        the thing must be done in an odd-number year.
Pohl's law:
        Nothing is so good that somebody, somewhere, will not hate it.
Pollyanna's Educational Constant:
        The hyperactive child is never absent.
Poorman's Rule:
        When you pull a plastic garbage bag from its handy dispenser package,
        you always get hold of the closed end and try to pull it open.
Positive, adj.:
        Mistaken at the top of one's voice.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Preudhomme's Law of Window Cleaning:
        It's on the other side.
Price's Advice:
        It's all a game -- play it to have fun.
program, n.:
        A magic spell cast over a computer allowing it to turn one's input
        into error messages.  tr.v. To engage in a pastime similar to banging
        one's head against a wall, but with fewer opportunities for reward.
Proof techniques #2: Proof by Oddity.
        SAMPLE: To prove that horses have an infinite number of legs.
(1) Horses have an even number of legs.
(2) They have two legs in back and fore legs in front.
(3) This makes a total of six legs, which certainly is an odd number of
    legs for a horse.
(4) But the only number that is both odd and even is infinity.
(5) Therefore, horses must have an infinite number of legs.

Topics is be covered in future issues include proof by:
        Intimidation
        Gesticulation (handwaving)
        "Try it; it works"
        Constipation (I was just sitting there and ...)
        Blatant assertion
        Changing all the 2's to _n's
        Mutual consent
        Lack of a counterexample, and
        "It stands to reason"
Pryor's Observation:
        How long you live has nothing to do
        with how long you are going to be dead.
Pudder's Law:
        Anything that begins well will end badly.
        (Note: The converse of Pudder's law is not true.)
Putt's Law:
        Technology is dominated by two types of people:
                Those who understand what they do not manage.
                Those who manage what they do not understand.
QOTD:
         "It's not the despair... I can stand the despair.  It's the hope."
QOTD:
        "Don't let your mind wander -- it's too little to be let out alone."
QOTD:
        "East is east... and let's keep it that way."
QOTD:
        "Every morning I read the obituaries; if my name's not there,
        I go to work."
QOTD:
        "He's on the same bus, but he's sure as hell got a different
        ticket."
QOTD:
        "I won't say he's untruthful, but his wife has to call the
        dog for dinner."
QOTD:
        "I've just learned about his illness.  Let's hope it's nothing
        trivial."
QOTD:
        "In the shopping mall of the mind, he's in the toy department."
QOTD:
        "It's a cold bowl of chili, when love don't work out."
QOTD:
        "It's been Monday all week today."
QOTD:
        "It's been real and it's been fun, but it hasn't been real fun."
QOTD:
        "It's hard to tell whether he has an ace up his sleeve or if
        the ace is missing from his deck altogether."
QOTD:
        "It's sort of a threat, you see.  I've never been very good at
        them myself, but I'm told they can be very effective."
QOTD:
        "Of course it's the murder weapon.  Who would frame someone with
        a fake?"
QOTD:
        "Of course there's no reason for it, it's just our policy."
QOTD:
        "Overweight is when you step on your dog's tail and it dies."
QOTD:
        "She's about as smart as bait."
QOTD:
        I opened Pandora's box, let the cat out of the bag and put the
        ball in their court.
                -- Hon. J. Hacker (The Ministry of Administrative Affairs)
QOTD:
        If it's too loud, you're too old.
QOTD:
        Y'know how s'm people treat th'r body like a TEMPLE?
        Well, I treat mine like 'n AMUSEMENT PARK...  S'great...
Quigley's Law:
        Whoever has any authority over you, no matter how small, will
        atttempt to use it.
QWERT (kwirt) n. [MW < OW qwertyuiop, a thirteenth]   1. a unit of weight
equal to 13 poiuyt  avoirdupois  (or 1.69 kiloliks), commonly used in
structural engineering  2. [Colloq.] one thirteenth the load that a fully
grown sligo can carry.  3. [Anat.] a painful  irritation  of  the dermis
in the region of the anus  4. [Slang] person who excites in others the
symptoms of a qwert.
                -- Webster's Middle World Dictionary, 4th ed.
Ralph's Observation:
        It is a mistake to let any mechanical object realise that you
        are in a hurry.
Ray's Rule of Precision:
        Measure with a micrometer.  Mark with chalk.  Cut with an axe.
Real World, The, n.:
        1. In programming, those institutions at which programming may
be used in the same sentence as FORTRAN, COBOL, RPG, IBM, etc.  2. To
programmers, the location of non-programmers and activities not related
to programming.  3. A universe in which the standard dress is shirt and
tie and in which a person's working hours are defined as 9 to 5.  4.
The location of the status quo.  5. Anywhere outside a university.
"Poor fellow, he's left MIT and gone into the real world."  Used
pejoratively by those not in residence there.  In conversation, talking
of someone who has entered the real world is not unlike talking about a
deceased person.
Reichel's Law:
        A body on vacation tends to remain on vacation unless acted upon by
        an outside force.
Reisner's Rule of Conceptual Inertia:
        If you think big enough, you'll never have to do it.
Renning's Maxim:
        Man is the highest animal.  Man does the classifying.
Reporter, n.:
        A writer who guesses his way to the truth and dispels it with a
        tempest of words.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Research, n.:
        Consider Columbus:
        He didn't know where he was going.
        When he got there he didn't know where he was.
        When he got back he didn't know where he had been.
        And he did it all on someone else's money.
Rhode's Law:
        When any principle, law, tenet, probability, happening, circumstance,
        or result can in no way be directly, indirectly, empirically, or
        circuitously proven, derived, implied, inferred, induced, deducted,
        estimated, or scientifically guessed, it will always for the purpose
        of convenience, expediency, political advantage, material gain, or
        personal comfort, or any combination of the above, or none of the
        above, be unilaterally and unequivocally assumed, proclaimed, and
        adhered to as absolute truth to be undeniably, universally, immutably,
        and infinitely so, until such time as it becomes advantageous to
        assume otherwise, maybe.
Ritchie's Rule:
        (1) Everything has some value -- if you use the right currency.
        (2) Paint splashes last longer than the paint job.
        (3) Search and ye shall find -- but make sure it was lost.
Rocky's Lemma of Innovation Prevention:
        Unless the results are known in advance, funding agencies will
        reject the proposal.
Rudd's Discovery:
        You know that any senator or congressman could go home and make
        $300,000 to $400,000, but they don't.  Why?  Because they can
        stay in Washington and make it there.
Rudin's Law:
        If there is a wrong way to do something, most people will
        do it every time.

Rudin's Second Law:
        In a crisis that forces a choice to be made among alternative
        courses of action, people tend to choose the worst possible
        course.
Rules for Writers:
        Avoid run-on sentences they are hard to read.  Don't use no double
negatives.  Use the semicolon properly, always use it where it is appropriate;
and never where it isn't.  Reserve the apostrophe for it's proper use and
omit it when its not needed.  No sentence fragments. Avoid commas, that are
unnecessary.  Eschew dialect, irregardless.  And don't start a sentence with
a conjunction.  Hyphenate between sy-llables and avoid un-necessary hyphens.
Write all adverbial forms correct.  Don't use contractions in formal writing.
Writing carefully, dangling participles must be avoided.  It is incumbent on
us to avoid archaisms.  Steer clear of incorrect forms of verbs that have
snuck in the language.  Never, ever use repetitive redundancies.  If I've
told you once, I've told you a thousand times, resist hyperbole.  Also,
avoid awkward or affected alliteration.  Don't string too many prepositional
phrases together unless you are walking through the valley of the shadow of
death.  "Avoid overuse of 'quotation "marks."'"
Rune's Rule:
        If you don't care where you are, you ain't lost.
Ryan's Law:
        Make three correct guesses consecutively
        and you will establish yourself as an expert.
Sacher's Observation:
        Some people grow with responsibility -- others merely swell.
Sattinger's Law:
        It works better if you plug it in.
Savage's Law of Expediency:
        You want it bad, you'll get it bad.
Schapiro's Explanation:
        The grass is always greener on the other side -- but that's
        because they use more manure.
Schmidt's Observation:
        All things being equal, a fat person uses more soap
        than a thin person.
Scott's First Law:
        No matter what goes wrong, it will probably look right.

Scott's Second Law:
        When an error has been detected and corrected, it will be found
        to have been wrong in the first place.
Corollary:
        After the correction has been found in error, it will be
        impossible to fit the original quantity back into the
        equation.
scribline, n.:
        The blank area on the back of credit cards where one's signature goes.
                -- "Sniglets", Rich Hall & Friends
Second Law of Business Meetings:
        If there are two possible ways to spell a person's name, you
        will pick the wrong one.

Corollary:
        If there is only one way to spell a name,
        you will spell it wrong, anyway.
Secretary's Revenge:
        Filing almost everything under "the".
Seleznick's Theory of Holistic Medicine:
        Ice Cream cures all ills.  Temporarily.
Self Test for Paranoia:
        You know you have it when you can't think of anything that's
        your own fault.
Serocki's Stricture:
        Marriage is always a bachelor's last option.
Shannon's Observation:
        Nothing is so frustrating as a bad situation that is beginning to
        improve.
Shaw's Principle:
        Build a system that even a fool can use, and only a fool will
        want to use it.
Shedenhelm's Law:
        All trails have more uphill sections than they have downhill sections.
Shick's Law:
        There is no problem a good miracle can't solve.
Silverman's Law:
        If Murphy's Law can go wrong, it will.
Simon's Law:
        Everything put together falls apart sooner or later.
Skinner's Constant (or Flannagan's Finagling Factor):
        That quantity which, when multiplied by, divided by, added to,
        or subtracted from the answer you got, gives you the answer you
        should have gotten.
Slick's Three Laws of the Universe:
        (1)  Nothing in the known universe travels faster than a bad check.
        (2)  A quarter-ounce of chocolate = four pounds of fat.
        (3)  There are two types of dirt:  the dark kind, which is
            attracted to light objects, and the light kind, which is
            attracted to dark objects.
Sodd's Second Law:
        Sooner or later, the worst possible set of circumstances is
        bound to occur.
Some points to remember [about animals]:
        (1) Don't go to sleep under big animals, e.g., elephants, rhinoceri,
            hippopotamuses;
        (2) Don't put animals with sharp teeth or poisonous fangs down the
            front of your clothes;
        (3) Don't pat certain animals, e.g., crocodiles and scorpions or dogs
            you have just kicked.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
Speer's 1st Law of Proofreading:
        The visibility of an error is inversely proportional to the
        number of times you have looked at it.
Spence's Admonition:
        Never stow away on a kamikaze plane.
standards, n.:
        The principles we use to reject other people's code.
Steckel's Rule to Success:
        Good enough is never good enough.
Steele's Law:
        There exist tasks which cannot be done by more than ten men
        or fewer than one hundred.
Steele's Plagiarism of Somebody's Philosophy:
        Everybody should believe in something -- I believe I'll have
        another drink.
Steinbach's Guideline for Systems Programming:
        Never test for an error condition you don't know how to handle.
Stenderup's Law:
        The sooner you fall behind, the more time you will have to catch up.
Stock's Observation:
        You no sooner get your head above water but what someone pulls
        your flippers off.
Stone's Law:
        One man's "simple" is another man's "huh?"
Stult's Report:
        Our problems are mostly behind us.  What we have to do now is
        fight the solutions.
Sturgeon's Law:
        90% of everything is crud.
Swipple's Rule of Order:
        He who shouts the loudest has the floor.
Taxes, n.:
        Of life's two certainties, the only one for which you can get
        an extension.
Technicality, n.:
        In an English court a man named Home was tried for slander in having
        accused a neighbor of murder.  His exact words were: "Sir Thomas Holt
        hath taken a cleaver and stricken his cook upon the head, so that one
        side of his head fell on one shoulder and the other side upon the
        other shoulder."  The defendant was acquitted by instruction of the
        court, the learned judges holding that the words did not charge murder,
        for they did not affirm the death of the cook, that being only an
        inference.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
The Beatles:
        Paul McCartney's old back-up band.
The Consultant's Curse:
        When the customer has beaten upon you long enough, give him
        what he asks for, instead of what he needs.  This is very strong
        medicine, and is normally only required once.
The distinction between Jewish and goyish can be quite subtle, as the
following quote from Lenny Bruce illustrates:

        "I'm Jewish.  Count Basie's Jewish.  Ray Charles is Jewish.
Eddie Cantor's goyish.  The B'nai Brith is goyish.  The Hadassah is
Jewish.  Marine Corps -- heavy goyish, dangerous.

        "Kool-Aid is goyish.  All Drake's Cakes are goyish.
Pumpernickel is Jewish and, as you know, white bread is very goyish.
Instant potatoes -- goyish.  Black cherry soda's very Jewish.
Macaroons are ____very Jewish.  Fruit salad is Jewish.  Lime Jell-O is
goyish.  Lime soda is ____very goyish.  Trailer parks are so goyish that
Jews won't go near them ..."
                -- Arthur Naiman, "Every Goy's Guide to Yiddish"
The Great Bald Swamp Hedgehog:
        The Great Bald Swamp Hedgehog of Billericay displays, in courtship,
        his single prickle and does impressions of Holiday Inn desk clerks.
        Since this means him standing motionless for enormous periods of
        time he is often eaten in full display by The Great Bald Swamp
        Hedgehog Eater.
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
The qotc (quote of the con) was Liz's:
        "My brain is paged out to my liver."
The real man's Bloody Mary:
        Ingredients: vodka, tomato juice, Tobasco, Worcestershire
        sauce, A-1 steak sauce, ice, salt, pepper, celery.

        Fill a large tumbler with vodka.
        Throw all the other ingredients away.
Thyme's Law:
        Everything goes wrong at once.
Toni's Solution to a Guilt-Free Life:
        If you have to lie to someone, it's their fault.
transparent, adj.:
        Being or pertaining to an existing, nontangible object.
        "It's there, but you can't see it"
                -- IBM System/360 announcement, 1964.

virtual, adj.:
        Being or pertaining to a tangible, nonexistent object.
        "I can see it, but it's not there."
                -- Lady Macbeth.
Truthful, adj.:
        Dumb and illiterate.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Tsort's Constant:
        1.67563, or precisely 1,237.98712567 times the difference between
the distance to the sun and the weight of a small orange.
                -- Terry Pratchett, "The Light Fantastic" (slightly modified)
Turnaucka's Law:
        The attention span of a computer is only as long as its
        electrical cord.
Tussman's Law:
        Nothing is as inevitable as a mistake whose time has come.
U.S. of A.:
        "Don't speak to the bus driver."
Germany:
        "It is strictly forbidden for passengers to speak to the driver."
England:
        "You are requested to refrain from speaking to the driver."
Scotland:
        "What have you got to gain by speaking to the driver?"
Italy:
        "Don't answer the driver."
Udall's Fourth Law:
        Any change or reform you make is going to have consequences you
        don't like.
Uncle Ed's Rule of Thumb:
        Never use your thumb for a rule.
        You'll either hit it with a hammer or get a splinter in it.
University, n.:
        Like a software house, except the software's free, and it's usable,
        and it works, and if it breaks they'll quickly tell you how to fix
        it, and ...

        [Okay, okay, I'll leave it in, but I think you're destroying
         the credibility of the entire fortune program.  Ed.]
Vail's Second Axiom:
        The amount of work to be done increases in proportion to the
        amount of work already completed.
Van Roy's Law:
        An unbreakable toy is useful for breaking other toys.
Van Roy's Law:
        Honesty is the best policy - there's less competition.

Van Roy's Truism:
        Life is a whole series of circumstances beyond your control.
Velilind's Laws of Experimentation:
        (1) If reproducibility may be a problem, conduct the test only once.
        (2) If a straight line fit is required, obtain only two data points.
Viking, n.:
        1. Daring Scandinavian seafarers, explorers, adventurers,
        entrepreneurs world-famous for their aggressive, nautical import
        business, highly leveraged takeovers and blue eyes.
        2. Bloodthirsty sea pirates who ravaged northern Europe beginning
        in the 9th century.

Hagar's note: The first definition is much preferred; the second is used
only by malcontents, the envious, and disgruntled owners of waterfront
property.
VMS, n.:
        The world's foremost multi-user adventure game.
Watson's Law:
        The reliability of machinery is inversely proportional to the
        number and significance of any persons watching it.
Weed's Axiom:
        Never ask two questions in a business letter.
        The reply will discuss the one in which you are
        least interested and say nothing about the other.
Weiler's Law:
        Nothing is impossible for the man who doesn't have to do it himself.
Weinberg's First Law:
        Progress is only made on alternate Fridays.
Weinberg's Principle:
        An expert is a person who avoids the small errors while
        sweeping on to the grand fallacy.
Weinberg's Second Law:
        If builders built buildings the way programmers wrote programs,
        then the first woodpecker that came along would destroy civilization.
Weiner's Law of Libraries:
        There are no answers, only cross references.
Westheimer's Discovery:
        A couple of months in the laboratory can frequently save a
        couple of hours in the library.
Whistler's Law:
        You never know who is right, but you always know who is in charge.
White's Statement:
        Don't lose heart!

Owen's Commentary on White's Statement:
        ...they might want to cut it out...

Byrd's Addition to Owen's Commentary:
        ...and they want to avoid a lengthy search.
Whitehead's Law:
        The obvious answer is always overlooked.
Wiker's Law:
        Government expands to absorb revenue and then some.
Wilcox's Law:
        A pat on the back is only a few centimeters from a kick in the pants.
                William Safire's Rules for Writers:

Remember to never split an infinitive.  The passive voice should never be
used.  Do not put statements in the negative form.  Verbs have to agree with
their subjects.  Proofread carefully to see if you words out.  If you reread
your work, you can find on rereading a great deal of repetition can be
avoided by rereading and editing.  A writer must not shift your point of
view.  And don't start a sentence with a conjunction.  (Remember, too, a
preposition is a terrible word to end a sentence with.) Don't overuse
exclamation marks!!  Place pronouns as close as possible, especially in long
sentences, as of 10 or more words, to their antecedents.  Writing carefully,
dangling participles must be avoided.  If any word is improper at the end of
a sentence, a linking verb is.  Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing
metaphors.  Avoid trendy locutions that sound flaky.  Everyone should be
careful to use a singular pronoun with singular nouns in their writing.
Always pick on the correct idiom.  The adverb always follows the verb.  Last
but not least, avoid cliches like the plague; seek viable alternatives.
Williams and Holland's Law:
        If enough data is collected, anything may be proven by statistical
        methods.
Wilner's Observation:
        All conversations with a potato should be conducted in private.
Wit, n.:
        The salt with which the American Humorist spoils his cookery
        ... by leaving it out.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Wombat's Laws of Computer Selection:
        (1) If it doesn't run Unix, forget it.
        (2) Any computer design over 10 years old is obsolete.
        (3) Anything made by IBM is junk. (See number 2)
        (4) The minimum acceptable CPU power for a single user is a
            VAX/780 with a floating point accelerator.
        (5) Any computer with a mouse is worthless.
                -- Rich Kulawiec
Woodward's Law:
        A theory is better than its explanation.
Year, n.:
        A period of three hundred and sixty-five disappointments.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Zall's Laws:
        (1) Any time you get a mouthful of hot soup, the next thing you do
           will be wrong.
        (2) How long a minute is, depends on which side of the bathroom
           door you're on.
Zymurgy's Law of Volunteer Labor:
        People are always available for work in the past tense.
Obscurism:
        The practice of peppering daily life with obscure
references as a subliminal means of showcasing both one's education
and one's wish to disassociate from the world of mass culture.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Ozmosis:
        The inability of one's job to live up to one's self-image.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Overboarding:
        Overcompensating for fears about the future by plunging
headlong into a job or life-style seemingly unrelated to one's
previous life interests: i.e., Amway sales, aerobics, the Republican
party, a career in law, cults, McJobs....
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Mid-Twenties Breakdown:
        A period of mental collapse occurring in one's twenties,
often caused by an inability to function outside of school or
structured environments coupled with a realization of one's essential
aloneness in the world.  Often marks induction into the ritual of
pharmaceutical usage.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Successophobia:
        The fear that if one is successful, then one's personal needs
will be forgotten and one will no longer have one's childish needs
catered to.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Safety Net-ism:
        The belief that there will always be a financial and emotional
safety net to buffer life's hurts.  Usually parents.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Status Substitution:
        Using an object with intellectual or fashionable cachet to
substitute for an object that is merely pricey: "Brian, you left your
copy of Camus in your brother's BMW."
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
The Emperor's New Mall:
        The popular notion that shopping malls exist on the insides only
and have no exterior.  The suspension of visual disbelief engendered
by this notion allows shoppers to pretend that the large, cement
blocks thrust into their environment do not, in fact, exist.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Voter's Block:
        The attempt, however futile, to register dissent with the
current political system by simply not voting.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Rebellion Postponement:
        The tendency in one's youth to avoid traditionally youthful
activities and artistic experiences in order to obtain serious career
experience.  Sometimes results in the mourning for lost youth at about
age thirty, followed by silly haircuts and expensive joke-inducing
wardrobes.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
O'Propriation:
        The inclusion of advertising, packaging, and entertainment
jargon from earlier eras in everyday speech for ironic and/or comic
effect: "Kathleen's Favorite Dead Celebrity party was tons o'fun" or
"Dave really thinks of himself as a zany, nutty, wacky, and madcap
guy, doesn't he?"
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Recreational Slumming:
        The practice of participating in recreational activities
of a class one perceives as lower than one's own: "Karen!  Donald!
Let's go bowling tonight!  And don't worry about shoes ... apparently
you can rent them."
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Occupational Slumming:
        Taking a job well beneath one's skill or education level
as a means of retreat from adult responsibilities and/or avoiding
failure in one's true occupation.
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
Tele-Parabilizing:
        Morals used in everyday life that derive from TV sitcom plots:
"That's just like the episode where Jan loses her glasses!"
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
QFM:
        Quelle fashion mistake.  "It was really QFM.  I mean painter
pants?  That's 1979 beyond belief."
                -- Douglas Coupland, "Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated
                   Culture"
greenrd's law
        Evey post disparaging someone else's spelling or grammar, or lauding
        one's own spelling or grammar, will inevitably contain a spelling or
        grammatical error.
                -- greenrd in http://www.kuro5hin.org/comments/2002/4/16/61744/5230?pid=5#6
A pickup with three guys in it pulls into the lumber yard.  One of the men
gets out and goes into the office.
        "I need some four-by-two's," he says.
        "You must mean two-by-four's" replies the clerk.
        The man scratches his head.  "Wait a minute," he says, "I'll go
check."
        Back, after an animated conversation with the other occupants of the
truck, he reassures the clerk, that, yes, in fact, two-by-fours would be
acceptable.
        "OK," says the clerk, writing it down, "how long you want 'em?"
        The guy gets the blank look again.  "Uh... I guess I better go
check," he says.
        He goes back out to the truck, and there's another animated
conversation.  The guy comes back into the office.  "A long time," he says,
"we're building a house".
African violet:                Such worth is rare
Apple blossom:                Preference
Bachelor's button:        Celibacy
Bay leaf:                I change but in death
Camelia:                Reflected loveliness
Chrysanthemum, red:        I love
Chrysanthemum, white:        Truth
Chrysanthemum, other:        Slighted love
Clover:                        Be mine
Crocus:                        Abuse not
Daffodil:                Innocence
Forget-me-not:                True love
Fuchsia:                Fast
Gardenia:                Secret, untold love
Honeysuckle:                Bonds of love
Ivy:                        Friendship, fidelity, marriage
Jasmine:                Amiablity, transports of joy, sensuality
Leaves (dead):                Melancholy
Lilac:                        Youthful innocence
Lilly:                        Purity, sweetness
Lilly of the valley:        Return of happiness
Magnolia:                Dignity, perseverance
        * An upside-down blossom reverses the meaning.
Ah, the Tsar's bazaar's bizarre beaux-arts!
Blame Saint Andreas -- it's all his fault.
But like the Good Book says... There's BIGGER DEALS to come!
"Whatever the missing mass of the universe is, I hope it's not cockroaches!"
                -- Mom
"Die?  I should say not, dear fellow.  No Barrymore would allow such a
conventional thing to happen to him."
                -- John Barrymore's dying words
Dreams are free, but there's a small charge for alterations.
        During a fight, a husband threw a bowl of Jello at his wife.  She had
him arrested for carrying a congealed weapon.
        In another fight, the wife decked him with a heavy glass pitcher.
She's a women who conks to stupor.
Every day it's the same thing -- variety.  I want something different.
Every time I think I know where it's at, they move it.
        "Fantasies are free."
        "NO!! NO!! It's the thought police!!!!"
Far duller than a serpent's tooth it is to spend a quiet youth.
Fortune's graffito of the week (or maybe even month):

                Don't Write On Walls!

                   (and underneath)

                You want I should type?
Fortune's Office Door Sign of the Week:

        Incorrigible punster -- Do not incorrige.
        "Found it," the Mouse replied rather crossly: "of course you know
what 'it' means."
        "I know what 'it' means well enough, when I find a thing," said the
Duck: "it's generally a frog or a worm.  The question is, what did the
archbishop find?"
Give me a Plumber's friend the size of the Pittsburgh dome, and a place
to stand, and I will drain the world.
Good news is just life's way of keeping you off balance.
Half Moon tonight.  (At least it's better than no Moon at all.)
How kind of you to be willing to live someone's life for them.
"I don't mind going nowhere as long as it's an interesting path."
                -- Ronald Mabbitt
        "I'm dying," he croaked.
        "My experiment was a success," the chemist retorted .
        "You can't really train a beagle," he dogmatized.
        "That's no beagle, it's a mongrel," she muttered.
        "The fire is going out," he bellowed.
        "Bad marksmanship," the hunter groused.
        "You ought to see a psychiatrist," he reminded me.
        "You snake," she rattled.
        "Someone's at the door," she chimed.
        "Company's coming," she guessed.
        "Dawn came too soon," she mourned.
        "I think I'll end it all," Sue sighed.
        "I ordered chocolate, not vanilla," I screamed.
        "Your embroidery is sloppy," she needled cruelly.
        "Where did you get this meat?" he bridled hoarsely.
                -- Gyles Brandreth, "The Joy of Lex"
If it doesn't smell yet, it's pretty fresh.
                -- Dave Johnson, on dead seagulls
If we see the light at the end of the tunnel, it's the light of an
oncoming train.
                -- Robert Lowell
In the war of wits, he's unarmed.
In this world, truth can wait; she's used to it.
It has long been known that birds will occasionally build nests in the
manes of horses.  The only known solution to this problem is to sprinkle
baker's yeast in the mane, for, as we all know, yeast is yeast and nest
is nest, and never the mane shall tweet.
It was pleasant to me to get a letter from you the other day.  Perhaps
I should have found it pleasanter if I had been able to decipher it.  I
don't think that I mastered anything beyond the date (which I knew) and
the signature (which I guessed at).  There's a singular and a perpetual
charm in a letter of yours; it never grows old, it never loses its
novelty.  Other letters are read and thrown away and forgotten, but
yours are kept forever -- unread.  One of them will last a reasonable
man a lifetime.
                -- Thomas Aldrich
It's a .88 magnum -- it goes through schools.
                -- Danny Vermin
It's amazing how much better you feel once you've given up hope.
It's not the fall that kills you, it's the landing.
It's pretty hard to tell what does bring happiness; poverty and wealth
have both failed.
                -- Kim Hubbard
Joe's sister puts spaghetti in her shoes!
Let's remind ourselves that last year's fresh idea is today's cliche.
                -- Austen Briggs
Live fast, die young, and leave a flat patch of fur on the highway!
                -- The Squirrels' Motto (The "Hell's Angels of Nature")
Losing your drivers' license is just God's way of saying "BOOGA, BOOGA!"
Lost interest?  It's so bad I've lost apathy.
No matter how cynical you get, it's impossible to keep up.
Nothing cures insomnia like the realization that it's time to get up.
Now there's a violent movie titled, "The Croquet Homicide," or "Murder
With Mallets Aforethought."
                -- Shelby Friedman, WSJ.
Odets, where is thy sting?
                -- George S. Kaufman
Once I finally figured out all of life's answers, they changed the questions.
Piece of cake!
                -- G.S. Koblas
Please remain calm, it's no use both of us being hysterical at the same time.
Progress might have been all right once, but it's gone on too long.
                -- Ogden Nash
Punning is the worst vice, and there's no vice versa.
Santa's elves are just a bunch of subordinate Clauses.
She's genuinely bogus.
        "Sheriff, we gotta catch Black Bart."
        "Oh, yeah?  What's he look like?"
        "Well, he's wearin' a paper hat, a paper shirt, paper pants and
paper boots."
        "What's he wanted for?"
        "Rustling."
Shirley MacLaine died today in a freak psychic collision today.  Two freaks
in a van  [Oh no!!  It's the Copyright Police!!]  Her aura-charred body was
laid to rest after a eulogy by Jackie Collins, fellow member of SAFE [Society
of Asinine Flake Entertainers].  Excerpted from some of his more quotable
comments:

        "Truly a woman of the times.  These times, those times..."
        "A Renaissance woman.  Why in 1432..."
        "A man for all seasons.  Really..."

After the ceremony, Shirley thanked her mourners and explained how delightful
it was to "get it together" again, presumably referring to having her now dead
body join her long dead brain.
Support the Girl Scouts!
        (Today's Brownie is tomorrow's Cookie!)
That's odd.  That's very odd.  Wouldn't you say that's very odd?
That's what she said.
        "The jig's up, Elman."
        "Which jig?"
                -- Jeff Elman
The Martian Canals were clearly the Martian's last ditch effort!
The past always looks better than it was.  It's only pleasant because
it isn't here.
                -- Finley Peter Dunne (Mr. Dooley)
The philosopher's treatment of a question is like the treatment of an illness.
                -- Wittgenstein.
The pollution's at that awkward stage.  Too thick to navigate and too
thin to cultivate.
                -- Doug Sneyd
The sixth sheik's sixth sheep's sick.
        [so say said sentence sextuply...]
The world really isn't any worse.  It's just that the news coverage
is so much better.
There seems no plan because it is all plan.
                -- C.S. Lewis
There's no real need to do housework -- after four years it doesn't get
any worse.
There's nothing very mysterious about you, except that
nobody really knows your origin, purpose, or destination.
Time will end all my troubles, but I don't always approve of Time's methods.
Tis man's perdition to be safe, when for the truth he ought to die.
Trouble strikes in series of threes, but when working around the house the
next job after a series of three is not the fourth job -- it's the start of
a brand new series of three.
Well thaaaaaaat's okay.
What you want, what you're hanging around in the world waiting for, is for
something to occur to you.
                -- Robert Frost

        [Quoted in "VMS Internals and Data Structures", V4.4, when
         referring to AST's.]
What's all this brouhaha?
What's so funny?
"What's the use of a good quotation if you can't change it?"
                -- The Doctor
I used to have nightmares that the Grinch's dog would kidnap me and make me
dress up in a halter-top and hot pants and listen to Burl Ives records.
                -- Robin, "Anything But Love", 12/18/91.
Alcoholics Anonymous is when you get to drink under someone else's name.
And you can't get any Watney's Red Barrel,
because the bars close every time you're thirsty...
Beer -- it's not just for breakfast anymore.
Best Beer: A panel of tasters assembled by the Consumer's Union in 1969
judged Coors and Miller's High Life to be among the very best. Those who
doubt that beer is a serious subject might ponder its effect on American
history. For example, New England's first colonists decided to drop anchor
at Plymouth Rock instead of continuing on to Virginia because, as one of
them put it, "We could not now take time for further consideration, our
victuals being spent and especially our beer."
        -- Felton & Fowler's Best, Worst & Most Unusual
But, officer, he's not drunk, I just saw his fingers twitch!
Coach: Can I draw you a beer, Norm?
Norm:  No, I know what they look like.  Just pour me one.
                -- Cheers, No Help Wanted

Coach: How about a beer, Norm?
Norm:  Hey I'm high on life, Coach.  Of course, beer is my life.
                -- Cheers, No Help Wanted

Coach: How's a beer sound, Norm?
Norm:  I dunno.  I usually finish them before they get a word in.
                -- Cheers, Fortune and Men's Weights
Coach: How's it going, Norm?
Norm:  Daddy's rich and Momma's good lookin'.
                -- Cheers, Truce or Consequences

Sam:   What's up, Norm?
Norm:  My nipples.  It's freezing out there.
                -- Cheers, Coach Returns to Action

Coach: What's the story, Norm?
Norm:  Thirsty guy walks into a bar.  You finish it.
                -- Cheers, Endless Slumper
Coach: What would you say to a beer, Normie?
Norm:  Daddy wuvs you.
                -- Cheers, The Mail Goes to Jail

Sam:  What'd you like, Normie?
Norm: A reason to live.  Gimme another beer.
                -- Cheers, Behind Every Great Man

Sam:  What will you have, Norm?
Norm: Well, I'm in a gambling mood, Sammy.  I'll take a glass of whatever
      comes out of that tap.
Sam:  Oh, looks like beer, Norm.
Norm: Call me Mister Lucky.
                -- Cheers, The Executive's Executioner
Coach: What's up, Norm?
Norm:  Corners of my mouth, Coach.
                -- Cheers, Fortune and Men's Weights

Coach:  What's shaking, Norm?
Norm:   All four cheeks and a couple of chins, Coach.
                -- Cheers, Snow Job

Coach:  Beer, Normie?
Norm:   Uh, Coach, I dunno, I had one this week.  Eh, why not, I'm still young.
                -- Cheers, Snow Job
Drinking coffee for instant relaxation?  That's like drinking alcohol for
instant motor skills.
                -- Marc Price
Drinking makes such fools of people, and people are such fools to begin
with, that it's compounding a felony.
                -- Robert Benchley
Fortune finishes the great quotations, #17

        "This bud of love, by summer's ripening breath,
        May prove a beauteous flower when next we meet."
        Juliet, this bud's for you.
FORTUNE'S FAVORITE RECIPES: #8
        Christmas Rum Cake

1 or 2 quarts rum                1 tbsp. baking powder
1 cup butter                        1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. sugar                        1 tbsp. lemon juice
2 large eggs                        2 cups brown sugar
2 cups dried assorted fruit        3 cups chopped English walnuts

Before you start, sample the rum to check for quality.  Good, isn't it?  Now
select a large mixing bowl, measuring cup, etc.  Check the rum again.  It
must be just right.  Be sure the rum is of the highest quality.  Pour one cup
of rum into a glass and drink it as fast as you can.  Repeat. With an electric
mixer, beat one cup butter in a large fluffy bowl.  Add 1 seaspoon of tugar
and beat again.  Meanwhile, make sure the rum teh absolutely highest quality.
Sample another cup.  Open second quart as necessary.  Add 2 orge laggs, 2 cups
of fried druit and beat untill high.  If the fried druit gets stuck in the
beaters, just pry it loose with a screwdriver.  Sample the rum again, checking
for toncisticity.  Next sift 3 cups of baking powder, a pinch of rum, a
seaspoon of toda and a cup of pepper or salt (it really doesn't matter).
Sample some more.  Sift 912 pint of lemon juice.  Fold in schopped butter and
strained chups.  Add bablespoon of brown gugar, or whatever color you have.
Mix mell.  Grease oven and turn cake pan to 350 gredees and rake until
poothtick comes out crean.
FORTUNE'S PARTY TIPS                #14

Tired of finding that other people are helping themselves to your good
liquor at BYOB parties?  Take along a candle, which you insert and
light after you've opened the bottle.  No one ever expects anything
drinkable to be in a bottle which has a candle stuck in its neck.
Halley's Comet: It came, we saw, we drank.
Harry's bar has a new cocktail.  It's called MRS punch.  They make it with
milk, rum and sugar and it's wonderful.  The milk is for vitality and the
sugar is for pep.  They put in the rum so that people will know what to do
with all that pep and vitality.
Having wandered helplessly into a blinding snowstorm Sam was greatly
relieved to see a sturdy Saint Bernard dog bounding toward him with
the traditional keg of brandy strapped to his collar.
        "At last," cried Sam, "man's best friend -- and a great big dog, too!"
He's just like Capistrano, always ready for a few swallows.
HOGAN'S HEROES DRINKING GAME --
        Take a shot every time:

-- Sergeant Schultz says, "I knoooooowww nooooothing!"
-- General Burkhalter or Major Hochstetter intimidate/insult Colonel Klink.
-- Colonel Klink falls for Colonel Hogan's flattery.
-- One of the prisoners sneaks out of camp (one shot for each prisoner to go).
-- Colonel Klink snaps to attention after answering the phone (two shots
        if it's one of our heroes on the other end).
-- One of the Germans is threatened with being sent to the Russian front.
-- Corporal Newkirk calls up a German in his phoney German accent, and
        tricks him (two shots if it's Colonel Klink).
-- Hogan has a romantic interlude with a beautiful girl from the underground.
-- Colonel Klink relates how he's never had an escape from Stalag 13.
-- Sergeant Schultz gives up a secret (two shots if he's bribed with food).
-- The prisoners listen to the Germans' conversation by a hidden transmitter.
-- Sergeant Schultz "captures" one of the prisoners after an escape.
-- Lebeau pronounces "colonel" as "cuh-loh-`nell".
-- Carter builds some kind of device (two shots if it's not explosive).
-- Lebeau wears his apron.
-- Hogan says "We've got no choice" when someone claims that the plan is
        impossible.
-- The prisoners capture an important German, and sneak him out the tunnel.
I distrust a man who says when.  If he's got to be careful not to drink
too much, it's because he's not to be trusted when he does.
                -- Sidney Greenstreet, "The Maltese Falcon"
I suppose that in a few hours I will sober up. That's such a sad
thought. I think I'll have a few more drinks to prepare myself.
I'd like to meet the guy who invented beer and see what he's working on now.
I'd rather have a free bottle in front of me than a prefrontal lobotomy.
                -- Fred Allen

[Also attributed to S. Clay Wilson.  Ed.]
I'm not under the alkafluence of inkahol
that some thinkle peep I am.
It's just the drunker I sit here the longer I get.
I've always felt sorry for people that don't drink -- remember,
when they wake up, that's as good as they're gonna feel all day!
In a whiskey it's age, in a cigarette it's taste and in a sports car
it's impossible.
It's a brave man who, when things are at their darkest, can kick back and party!
                -- Dennis Quaid, "Inner Space"
It's gonna be alright,
It's almost midnight,
And I've got two more bottles of wine.
It's the same old story; boy meets beer, boy drinks beer... boy gets
another beer.
                -- Cheers
It's useless to try to hold some people to anything they say while they're
madly in love, drunk, or running for office.
Let the worthy citizens of Chicago get their liquor the best way
they can. I'm sick of the job.  It's a thankless one and full of grief.
                -- Al Capone
Look at it this way: Your wife's spending $280 a month on meditation lessons to
forget $26,000 of college education. And you're still drinking ordinary scotch?
[Norm comes in with an attractive woman.]

Coach:  Normie, Normie, could this be Vera?
Norm:   With a lot of expensive surgery, maybe.
                -- Cheers, Norman's Conquest

Coach:  What's up, Normie?
Norm:   The temperature under my collar, Coach.
                -- Cheers, I'll Be Seeing You (Part 2)

Coach:  What would you say to a nice beer, Normie?
Norm:   Going down?
                -- Cheers, Diane Meets Mom
[Norm goes into the bar at Vic's Bowl-A-Rama.]

Off-screen crowd:  Norm!
Sam:   How the hell do they know him here?
Cliff: He's got a life, you know.
                -- Cheers, From Beer to Eternity

Woody: What can I do for you, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Elope with my wife.
                -- Cheers, The Triangle

Woody: How's life, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Oh, I'm waiting for the movie.
                -- Cheers, Take My Shirt... Please?
[Norm is angry.]

Woody: What can I get you, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Clifford Clavin's head.
                -- Cheers, The Triangle

Sam:  Hey, what's happening, Norm?
Norm: Well, it's a dog-eat-dog world, Sammy,
      and I'm wearing Milk-Bone underwear.
                -- Cheers, The Peterson Principle

Sam:  How's life in the fast lane, Normie?
Norm: Beats me, I can't find the on-ramp.
                -- Cheers, Diane Chambers Day
[Norm returns from the hospital.]

Coach:  What's up, Norm?
Norm:   Everything that's supposed to be.
                -- Cheers, Diane Meets Mom

Sam:  What's new, Normie?
Norm: Terrorists, Sam.  They've taken over my stomach.  They're demanding beer.
                -- Cheers, The Heart is a Lonely Snipehunter

Coach: What'll it be, Normie?
Norm:  Just the usual, Coach.  I'll have a froth of beer and a snorkel.
                -- Cheers, King of the Hill
[Norm tries to prove that he is not Anton Kreitzer.]
Norm:  Afternoon, everybody!
All:   Anton!
                -- Cheers, The Two Faces of Norm

Woody: What's going on, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  A flashing sign in my gut that says, ``Insert beer here.''
                -- Cheers, Call Me, Irresponsible

Sam:  What can I get you, Norm?
Norm: [scratching his beard] Got any flea powder?  Ah, just kidding.
      Gimme a beer; I think I'll just drown the little suckers.
                -- Cheers, Two Girls for Every Boyd
Norm:  Gentlemen, start your taps.
                -- Cheers, The Coach's Daughter

Coach: How's life treating you, Norm?
Norm:  Like it caught me in bed with his wife.
                -- Cheers, Any Friend of Diane's

Coach: How's life, Norm?
Norm:  Not for the squeamish, Coach.
                -- Cheers, Friends, Romans, and Accountants
Norm:  Hey, everybody.
All:   [silence; everybody is mad at Norm for being rich.]
Norm:  [Carries on both sides of the conversation himself.]
       Norm!   (Norman.)
       How are you feeling today, Norm?
       Rich and thirsty.  Pour me a beer.
                -- Cheers, Tan 'n Wash

Woody: What's the latest, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Zsa-Zsa marries a millionaire, Peterson drinks a beer.
       Film at eleven.
                -- Cheers, Knights of the Scimitar

Woody: How are you today, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Never been better, Woody. ... Just once I'd like to be better.
                -- Cheers, Chambers vs. Malone
One dusty July afternoon, somewhere around the turn of the century, Patrick
Malone was in Mulcahey's Bar, bending an elbow with the other street car
conductors from the Brooklyn Traction Company.  While they were discussing the
merits of a local ring hero, the bar goes silent.  Malone turns around to see
his wife, with a face grim as death, stalking to the bar.
        Slapping a four-bit piece down on the bar, she draws herself up to her
full five feet five inches and says to Mulcahey, "Give me what himself has
been havin' all these years."
        Mulcahey looks at Malone, who shrugs, and then back at Margaret Mary
Malone.  He sets out a glass and pours her a triple shot of Rye.  The bar is
totally silent as they watch the woman pick up the glass and knock back the
drink.  She slams the glass down on the bar, gasps, shudders slightly, and
passes out; falling straight back, stiff as a board, saved from sudden contact
with the barroom floor by the ample belly of Seamus Fogerty.
        Sometime later, she comes to on the pool table, a jacket under her
head.  Her bloodshot eyes fell upon her husband, who says, "And all these
years you've been thinkin' I've been enjoying meself."
Police:        Good evening, are you the host?
Host:        No.
Police:        We've been getting complaints about this party.
Host:        About the drugs?
Police:        No.
Host:        About the guns, then?  Is somebody complaining about the guns?
Police:        No, the noise.
Host:        Oh, the noise.  Well that makes sense because there are no guns
        or drugs here.  (An enormous explosion is heard in the
        background.)  Or fireworks.  Who's complaining about the noise?
        The neighbors?
Police:        No, the neighbors fled inland hours ago.  Most of the recent
        complaints have come from Pittsburgh.  Do you think you could
        ask the host to quiet things down?
Host:        No Problem.  (At this point, a Volkswagon bug with primitive
        religious symbols drawn on the doors emerges from the living
        room and roars down the hall, past the police and onto the
        lawn, where it smashes into a tree.  Eight guests tumble out
        onto the grass, moaning.)  See?  Things are starting to wind
        down.
Sam:   What do you know there, Norm?
Norm:  How to sit.  How to drink.  Want to quiz me?
                -- Cheers, Loverboyd

Sam:   Hey, how's life treating you there, Norm?
Norm:  Beats me. ...  Then it kicks me and leaves me for dead.
                -- Cheers, Loverboyd

Woody: How would a beer feel, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Pretty nervous if I was in the room.
                -- Cheers, Loverboyd
Sam:   What's the good word, Norm?
Norm:  Plop, plop, fizz, fizz.
Sam:   Oh no, not the Hungry Heifer...
Norm:  Yeah, yeah, yeah...
Sam:   One heartburn cocktail coming up.
                -- Cheers, I'll Gladly Pay You Tuesday

Sam:   Whaddya say, Norm?
Norm:  Well, I never met a beer I didn't drink.  And down it goes.
                -- Cheers, Love Thy Neighbor

Woody:  What's your pleasure, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:   Boxer shorts and loose shoes.  But I'll settle for a beer.
                -- Cheers, The Bar Stoolie
Sam:  What do you say, Norm?
Norm: Any cheap, tawdry thing that'll get me a beer.
                -- Cheers, Birth, Death, Love and Rice

Sam:  What do you say to a beer, Normie?
Norm: Hiya, sailor.  New in town?
                -- Cheers, Woody Goes Belly Up

Norm: [coming in from the rain] Evening, everybody.
All:  Norm!  (Norman.)
Sam:  Still pouring, Norm?
Norm: That's funny, I was about to ask you the same thing.
                -- Cheers, Diane's Nightmare
Sam:  What's going on, Normie?
Norm: My birthday, Sammy.  Give me a beer, stick a candle in
      it, and I'll blow out my liver.
                -- Cheers, Where Have All the Floorboards Gone

Woody: Hey, Mr. P.  How goes the search for Mr. Clavin?
Norm:  Not as well as the search for Mr. Donut.
       Found him every couple of blocks.
                -- Cheers, Head Over Hill
Sam:  What's new, Norm?
Norm: Most of my wife.
                -- Cheers, The Spy Who Came in for a Cold One

Coach: Beer, Norm?
Norm:  Naah, I'd probably just drink it.
                -- Cheers, Now Pitching, Sam Malone

Coach: What's doing, Norm?
Norm:  Well, science is seeking a cure for thirst.  I happen
       to be the guinea pig.
                -- Cheers, Let Me Count the Ways
SMOKING IS NOW ALLOWED !!!
        Anyone wishing to smoke, however, must file, in triplicate, the
        U.S. government Environmental Impact Narrative Statement (EINS),
        describing in detail the type of combustion proposed, impact on
        the environment, and anticipated opposition.  Statements must be
        filed 30 days in advance.
Some people have no respect for age unless it's bottled.
The father, passing through his son's college town late one evening on a
business trip, thought he would pay his boy a suprise visit.  Arriving at the
lad's fraternity house, dad rapped loudly on the door.  After several minutes
of knocking, a sleepy voice drifted down from a second-floor window,
        "Whaddaya want?"
        "Does Ramsey Duncan live here?" asked the father.
        "Yeah," replied the voice.  "Dump him on the front porch."
The voluptuous blond was chatting with her handsome escort in a posh
restaurant when their waiter, stumbling as he brought their drinks,
dumped a martini on the rocks down the back of the blonde's dress.  She
sprang to her feet with a wild rebel yell, dashed wildly around the table,
then galloped wriggling from the room followed by her distraught boyfriend.
A man seated on the other side of the room with a date of his own beckoned
to the waiter and said, "We'll have two of whatever she was drinking."
The wise and intelligent are coming belatedly to realize that alcohol, and
not the dog, is man's best friend.  Rover is taking a beating -- and he should.
                -- W.C. Fields
When I sell liquor, it's called bootlegging; when my patrons serve
it on silver trays on Lake Shore Drive, it's called hospitality.
                -- Al Capone
Woody:  What's the story, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:   The Bobbsey twins go to the brewery.
        Let's just cut to the happy ending.
                -- Cheers, Airport V

Woody:  Hey, Mr. Peterson, there's a cold one waiting for you.
Norm:   I know, and if she calls, I'm not here.
                -- Cheers, Bar Wars II: The Woodman Strikes Back

Sam:  Beer, Norm?
Norm: Have I gotten that predictable?  Good.
                -- Cheers, Don't Paint Your Chickens
Woody: Hey, Mr. Peterson, Jack Frost nipping at your nose?
Norm:  Yep, now let's get Joe Beer nipping at my liver, huh?
                -- Cheers, Feeble Attraction

Sam:  What are you up to Norm?
Norm: My ideal weight if I were eleven feet tall.
                -- Cheers, Bar Wars III: The Return of Tecumseh

Woody: Nice cold beer coming up, Mr. Peterson.
Norm:  You mean, `Nice cold beer going *down* Mr. Peterson.'
                -- Cheers, Loverboyd
Woody: Hey, Mr. Peterson, what do you say to a cold one?
Norm:  See you later, Vera, I'll be at Cheers.
                -- Cheers, Norm's Last Hurrah

Sam:   Well, look at you.  You look like the cat that swallowed the canary.
Norm:  And I need a beer to wash him down.
                -- Cheers, Norm's Last Hurrah

Woody:  Would you like a beer, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:   No, I'd like a dead cat in a glass.
                -- Cheers, Little Carla, Happy at Last, Part 2
Woody: Hey, Mr. Peterson, what's up?
Norm:  The warranty on my liver.
                -- Cheers, Breaking In Is Hard to Do

Sam:  What can I do for you, Norm?
Norm: Open up those beer taps and, oh, take the day off, Sam.
                -- Cheers, Veggie-Boyd

Woody: What's going on, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Another layer for the winter, Wood.
                -- Cheers, It's a Wonderful Wife
Woody: How are you feeling today, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Poor.
Woody: Oh, I'm sorry to hear that.
Norm:  No, I meant `pour'.
                -- Cheers, Strange Bedfellows, Part 3

Woody: Hey, Mr. Peterson, what's the story?
Norm:  Boy meets beer.  Boy drinks beer.  Boy gets another beer.
                -- Cheers, The Proposal

Paul:  Hey Norm, how's the world been treating you?
Norm:  Like a baby treats a diaper.
                -- Cheers, Tan 'n Wash
Woody: What's going on, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  Let's talk about what's going *in* Mr. Peterson.  A beer, Woody.
                -- Cheers, Paint Your Office

Sam:  How's life treating you?
Norm: It's not, Sammy, but that doesn't mean you can't.
                -- Cheers, A Kiss is Still a Kiss

Woody:  Can I pour you a draft, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:   A little early, isn't it Woody?
Woody:  For a beer?
Norm:   No, for stupid questions.
                -- Cheers, Let Sleeping Drakes Lie
Woody: What's happening, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  The question is, Woody, why is it happening to me?
                -- Cheers, Strange Bedfellows, Part 1

Woody: What's going down, Mr. Peterson?
Norm:  My cheeks on this barstool.
                -- Cheers, Strange Bedfellows, Part 2

Woody: Hey, Mr. Peterson, can I pour you a beer?
Norm:  Well, okay, Woody, but be sure to stop me at one. ...
       Eh, make that one-thirty.
                -- Cheers, Strange Bedfellows, Part 2
FORTUNE PROVIDES QUESTIONS FOR THE GREAT ANSWERS: #21
A:        Dr. Livingston I. Presume.
Q:        What's Dr. Presume's full name?
FORTUNE PROVIDES QUESTIONS FOR THE GREAT ANSWERS: #31
A:        Chicken Teriyaki.
Q:        What is the name of the world's oldest kamikaze pilot?
Knock, knock!
        Who's there?
Sam and Janet.
        Sam and Janet who?
Sam and Janet Evening...
Knucklehead:        "Knock, knock"
Pee Wee:        "Who's there?"
Knucklehead:        "Little ol' lady."
Pee Wee:        "Liddle ol' lady who?"
Knucklehead:        "I didn't know you could yodel"
Q:        How many Bell Labs Vice Presidents does it take to change a light bulb?
A:        That's proprietary information.  Answer available from AT&T on payment
        of license fee (binary only).
Q:        How many DEC repairman does it take to fix a flat?
A:        Five; four to hold the car up and one to swap tires.

Q:        How long does it take?
A:        It's indeterminate.
        It will depend upon how many flats they've brought with them.

Q:        What happens if you've got TWO flats?
A:        They replace your generator.
Q:        How many elephants can you fit in a VW Bug?
A:        Four.  Two in the front, two in the back.

Q:        How can you tell if an elephant is in your refrigerator?
A:        There's a footprint in the mayo.

Q:        How can you tell if two elephants are in your refrigerator?
A:        There's two footprints in the mayo.

Q:        How can you tell if three elephants are in your refrigerator?
A:        The door won't shut.

Q:        How can you tell if four elephants are in your refrigerator?
A:        There's a VW Bug in your driveway.
Q:        How many gradual (sorry, that's supposed to be "graduate") students
        does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A:        "I'm afraid we don't know, but make my stipend tax-free, give my
        advisor a $30,000 grant of the taxpayer's money, and I'm sure he
        can tell me how to do the shit work for him so he can take the
        credit for answering this incredibly vital question."
Q:        How many Harvard MBA's does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A:        Just one.  He grasps it firmly and the universe revolves around him.
Q:        How many IBM 370's does it take to execute a job?
A:        Four, three to hold it down, and one to rip its head off.
Q:        How many IBM CPU's does it take to do a logical right shift?
A:        33.  1 to hold the bits and 32 to push the register.
Q:        How many lawyers does it take to change a light bulb?
A:        One.  Only it's his light bulb when he's done.
Q:        How many members of the U.S.S. Enterprise does it take to change a
        light bulb?
A:        Seven.  Scotty has to report to Captain Kirk that the light bulb in
        the Engineering Section is getting dim, at which point Kirk will send
        Bones to pronounce the bulb dead (although he'll immediately claim
        that he's a doctor, not an electrician).  Scotty, after checking
        around, realizes that they have no more new light bulbs, and complains
        that he "canna" see in the dark.  Kirk will make an emergency stop at
        the next uncharted planet, Alpha Regula IV, to procure a light bulb
        from the natives, who, are friendly, but seem to be hiding something.
        Kirk, Spock, Bones, Yeoman Rand and two red shirt security officers
        beam down to the planet, where the two security officers are promply
        killed by the natives, and the rest of the landing party is captured.
        As something begins to develop between the Captain and Yeoman Rand,
        Scotty, back in orbit, is attacked by a Klingon destroyer and must
        warp out of orbit.  Although badly outgunned, he cripples the Klingon
        and races back to the planet in order to rescue Kirk et. al. who have
        just saved the natives' from an awful fate and, as a reward, been
        given all light bulbs they can carry.  The new bulb is then inserted
        and the Enterprise continues on its five year mission.
Q:        Minnesotans ask, "Why aren't there more pharmacists from Alabama?"
A:        Easy.  It's because they can't figure out how to get the little
        bottles into the typewriter.
Q:        What do agnostic, insomniac dyslexics do at night?
A:        Stay awake and wonder if there's a dog.
Q:        What's a light-year?
A:        One-third less calories than a regular year.
Q:        What's buried in Grant's tomb?
A:        A corpse.
Q:        What's hard going in and soft and sticky coming out?
A:        Chewing gum.
Q:        What's tan and black and looks great on a lawyer?
A:        A doberman.
Q:        What's the contour integral around Western Europe?
A:        Zero, because all the Poles are in Eastern Europe!

Addendum: Actually, there ARE some Poles in Western Europe, but they
        are removable!

Q:        An English mathematician (I forgot who) was asked by his
        very religious colleague: Do you believe in one God?
A:        Yes, up to isomorphism!

Q:        What is a compact city?
A:        It's a city that can be guarded by finitely many near-sighted
        policemen!
                -- Peter Lax
Q:        What's the difference betweeen USL and the Graf Zeppelin?
A:        The Graf Zeppelin represented cutting edge technology for its time.
Q:        What's the difference between a dead dog in the road and a dead
        lawyer in the road?
A:        There are skid marks in front of the dog.
Q:        What's the difference between a duck and an elephant?
A:        You can't get down off an elephant.
Q:        What's the difference between a Mac and an Etch-a-Sketch?
A:        You don't have to shake the Mac to clear the screen.
Q:        What's the difference between an Irish wedding and an Irish wake?
A:        One less drunk.
Q:        What's the difference between Bell Labs and the Boy Scouts of America?
A:        The Boy Scouts have adult supervision.
Q:        What's the difference between the 1950's and the 1980's?
A:        In the 80's, a man walks into a drugstore and states loudly, "I'd
        like some condoms," and then, leaning over the counter, whispers,
        "and some cigarettes."
Q:        What's the difference between USL and the Titanic?
A:        The Titanic had a band.
Q:        What's tiny and yellow and very, very, dangerous?
A:        A canary with the super-user password.
Q:        What's yellow, and equivalent to the Axiom of Choice?
A:        Zorn's Lemon.
Q:        Where's the Lone Ranger take his garbage?
A:        To the dump, to the dump, to the dump dump dump!

Q:        What's the Pink Panther say when he steps on an ant hill?
A:        Dead ant, dead ant, dead ant dead ant dead ant...
Q:        Who cuts the grass on Walton's Mountain?
A:        Lawn Boy.
Q:        Why is it that the more accuracy you demand from an interpolation
        function, the more expensive it becomes to compute?
A:        That's the Law of Spline Demand.
Q:        Why is Poland just like the United States?
A:        In the United States you can't buy anything for zlotys and in
        Poland you can't either, while in the U.S. you can get whatever
        you want for dollars, just as you can in Poland.
                -- being told in Poland, 1987
A book is the work of a mind, doing its work in the way that a mind deems
best.  That's dangerous.  Is the work of some mere individual mind likely to
serve the aims of collectively accepted compromises, which are known in the
schools as 'standards'?  Any mind that would audaciously put itself forth to
work all alone is surely a bad example for the students, and probably, if
not downright antisocial, at least a little off-center, self-indulgent,
elitist.  ... It's just good pedagogy, therefore, to stay away from such
stuff, and use instead, if film-strips and rap-sessions must be
supplemented, 'texts,' selected, or prepared, or adapted, by real
professionals.  Those texts are called 'reading material.'  They are the
academic equivalent of the 'listening material' that fills waiting-rooms,
and the 'eating material' that you can buy in thousands of convenient eating
resource centers along the roads.
                -- The Underground Grammarian
A fool's brain digests philosophy into folly, science into superstition, and
art into pedantry.  Hence University education.
                -- G. B. Shaw
A grammarian's life is always in tense.
         A Plan for the Improvement of English Spelling
                          by Mark Twain

        For example, in Year 1 that useless letter "c" would be dropped
to be replased either by "k" or "s", and likewise "x" would no longer
be part of the alphabet.  The only kase in which "c" would be retained
would be the "ch" formation, which will be dealt with later.  Year 2
might reform "w" spelling, so that "which" and "one" would take the
same konsonant, wile Year 3 might well abolish "y" replasing it with
"i" and Iear 4 might fiks the "g/j" anomali wonse and for all.
        Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear
with Iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and Iears 6-12
or so modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants.
Bai Iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi
ridandant letez "c", "y" and "x" -- bai now jast a memori in the maindz
ov ould doderez -- tu riplais "ch", "sh", and "th" rispektivli.
        Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud
hev a lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.
A professor is one who talks in someone else's sleep.
        A reader reports that when the patient died, the attending doctor
recorded the following on the patient's chart:  "Patient failed to fulfill
his wellness potential."
        Another doctor reports that in a recent issue of the *American Journal
of Family Practice* fleas were called "hematophagous arthropod vectors."
        A reader reports that the Army calls them "vertically deployed anti-
personnel devices."  You probably call them bombs.
        At McClellan Air Force base in Sacramento, California, civilian
mechanics were placed on "non-duty, non-pay status."  That is, they were fired.
        After taking the trip of a lifetime, our reader sent his twelve rolls
of film to Kodak for developing (or "processing," as Kodak likes to call it)
only to receive the following notice:  "We must report that during the handling
of your twelve 35mm Kodachrome slide orders, the films were involved in an
unusual laboratory experience."  The use of the passive is a particularly nice
touch, don't you think?  Nobody did anything to the films; they just had a bad
experience.  Of course our reader can always go back to Tibet and take his
pictures all over again, using the twelve replacement rolls Kodak so generously
sent him.
                -- Quarterly Review of Doublespeak (NCTE)
Abstract:
        This study examined the incidence of neckwear tightness among a group
of 94 white-collar working men and the effect of a tight business-shirt collar
and tie on the visual performance of 22 male subjects.  Of the white-collar
men measured, 67% were found to be wearing neckwear that was tighter than
their neck circumference.  The visual discrimination of the 22 subjects was
evaluated using a critical flicker frequency (CFF) test.  Results of the CFF
test indicated that tight neckwear significantly decreased the visual
performance of the subjects and that visual performance did not improve
immediately when tight neckwear was removed.
                -- Langan, L.M. and Watkins, S.M. "Pressure of Menswear on the
                   Neck in Relation to Visual Performance."  Human Factors 29,
                   #1 (Feb. 1987), pp. 67-71.
Academicians care, that's who.
... But if we laugh with derision, we will never understand.  Human
intellectual capacity has not altered for thousands of years so far as
we can tell.  If intelligent people invested intense energy in issues
that now seem foolish to us, then the failure lies in our understanding
of their world, not in their distorted perceptions.  Even the standard
example of ancient nonsense -- the debate about angels on pinheads --
makes sense once you realize that theologians were not discussing
whether five or eighteen would fit, but whether a pin could house a
finite or an infinite number.
                -- S. J. Gould, "Wide Hats and Narrow Minds"
Dear Miss Manners:
        My home economics teacher says that one must never place one's
elbows on the table.  However, I have read that one elbow, in between
courses, is all right.  Which is correct?

Gentle Reader:
        For the purpose of answering examinations in your home economics
class, your teacher is correct.  Catching on to this principle of
education may be of even greater importance to you now than learning
correct current table manners, vital as Miss Manners believes that is.
Do not clog intellect's sluices with bits of knowledge of questionable uses.
Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers.  My
opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.  There's many a bestseller
that could have been prevented by a good teacher.
                -- Flannery O'Connor
Fortune's Guide to Freshman Notetaking:

WHEN THE PROFESSOR SAYS:                        YOU WRITE:

Probably the greatest quality of the poetry        John Milton -- born 1608
of John Milton, who was born in 1608, is the
combination of beauty and power.  Few have
excelled him in the use of the English language,
or for that matter, in lucidity of verse form,
'Paradise Lost' being said to be the greatest
single poem ever written."

Current historians have come to                        Most of the problems that now
doubt the complete advantageousness                face the United States are
of some of Roosevelt's policies...                directly traceable to the
                                                bungling and greed of President
                                                Roosevelt.

... it is possible that we simply do                Professor Mitchell is a
not understand the Russian viewpoint...                communist.
Graduate life: It's not just a job.  It's an indenture.
If while you are in school, there is a shortage of qualified personnel
in a particular field, then by the time you graduate with the necessary
qualifications, that field's employment market is glutted.
                -- Marguerite Emmons
        In a forest a fox bumps into a little rabbit, and says, "Hi,
Junior, what are you up to?"
        "I'm writing a dissertation on how rabbits eat foxes," said the
rabbit.
        "Come now, friend rabbit, you know that's impossible!  No one
will publish such rubbish!"
        "Well, follow me and I'll show you."
        They both go into the rabbit's dwelling and after a while the
rabbit emerges with a satisfied expression on his face.  Comes along a
wolf.  "Hello, little buddy, what are we doing these days?"
        "I'm writing the 2'nd chapter of my thesis, on how rabbits devour
wolves."
        "Are you crazy?  Where's your academic honesty?"
        "Come with me and I'll show you."
        As before, the rabbit comes out with a satisfied look on his face
and a diploma in his paw.  Finally, the camera pans into the rabbit's cave
and, as everybody should have guessed by now, we see a mean-looking, huge
lion, sitting, picking his teeth and belching, next to some furry, bloody
remnants of the wolf and the fox.

        The moral: It's not the contents of your thesis that are
important -- it's your PhD advisor that really counts.
                        It's grad exam time...
COMPUTER SCIENCE
        Inside your desk you'll find a listing of the DEC/VMS operating
system in IBM 1710 machine code. Show what changes are necessary to convert
this code into a UNIX Berkeley 7 operating system.  Prove that these fixes are
bug free and run correctly. You should gain at least 150% efficiency in the
new system.  (You should take no more than 10 minutes on this question.)

MATHEMATICS
        If X equals PI times R^2, construct a formula showing how long
it would take a fire ant to drill a hole through a dill pickle, if the
length-girth ratio of the ant to the pickle were 98.17:1.

GENERAL KNOWLEDGE
Describe the Universe.  Give three examples.
                        It's grad exam time...
MEDICINE
        You have been provided with a razor blade, a piece of gauze, and a
bottle of Scotch.  Remove your appendix.  Do not suture until your work has
been inspected.  (You have 15 minutes.)

HISTORY
        Describe the history of the papacy from its origins to the present
day, concentrating especially, but not exclusively, on its social, political,
economic, religious and philisophical impact upon Europe, Asia, America, and
Africa.  Be brief, concise, and specific.

BIOLOGY
        Create life.  Estimate the differences in subsequent human culture
if this form of life had been created 500 million years ago or earlier, with
special attention to its probable effect on the English parliamentary system.
It's is not, it isn't ain't, and it's it's, not its, if you mean it
is.  If you don't, it's its.  Then too, it's hers.  It isn't her's.  It
isn't our's either.  It's ours, and likewise yours and theirs.
                -- Oxford University Press, Edpress News
Most seminars have a happy ending.  Everyone's glad when they're over.
Normally our rules are rigid; we tend to discretion, if for no other reason
than self-protection.  We never recommend any of our graduates, although we
cheerfully provide information as to those who have failed their courses.
                -- Jack Vance, "Freitzke's Turn"
                `O' LEVEL COUNTER CULTURE
Timewarp allowed: 3 hours.  Do not scrawl situationalist graffiti in the
margins or stub your rollups in the inkwells.  Orange may be worn.  Credit
will be given to candidates who self-actualise.

        (1) Compare and contrast Pink Floyd with Black Sabbath and say why
            neither has street credibility.
        (2) "Even Buddha would have been hard pushed to reach Nirvana squatting
            on a juggernaut route."  Consider the dialectic of inner truth
            and inner city.
        (3) Discuss degree of hassle involved in paranoia about being sucked
            into a black hole.
        (4) "The Egomaniac's Liberation Front were a bunch of revisionist
            ripoff merchants."  Comment on this insult.
        (5) Account for the lack of references to brown rice in Dylan's lyrics.
        (6) "Castenada was a bit of a bozo."  How far is this a fair summing
            up of western dualism?
        (7) Hermann Hesse was a Pisces.  Discuss.
"OK, now let's look at four dimensions on the blackboard."
                -- Dr. Joy
Periphrasis is the putting of things in a round-about way.  "The cost may be
upwards of a figure rather below 10m#." is a periphrasis for The cost may be
nearly 10m#.  "In Paris there reigns a complete absence of really reliable
news" is a periphrasis for There is no reliable news in Paris.  "Rarely does
the 'Little Summer' linger until November, but at times its stay has been
prolonged until quite late in the year's penultimate month" contains a
periphrasis for November, and another for lingers.  "The answer is in the
negative" is a periphrasis for No.  "Was made the recipient of" is a
periphrasis for Was presented with.  The periphrasis style is hardly possible
on any considerable scale without much use of abstract nouns such as "basis,
case, character, connexion, dearth, description, duration, framework, lack,
nature, reference, regard, respect".  The existence of abstract nouns is a
proof that abstract thought has occurred; abstract thought is a mark of
civilized man; and so it has come about that periphrasis and civilization are
by many held to be inseparable.  These good people feel that there is an almost
indecent nakedness, a reversion to barbarism, in saying No news is good news
instead of "The absence of intelligence is an indication of satisfactory
developments."
                -- Fowler's English Usage
"Plaese porrf raed."
                -- Prof. Michael O'Longhlin, S.U.N.Y. Purchase
Princeton's taste is sweet like a strawberry tart.  Harvard's is a subtle
taste, like whiskey, coffee, or tobacco.  It may even be a bad habit, for
all I know.
                -- Prof. J.H. Finley '25
Professor Gorden Newell threw another shutout in last week's Chem Eng. 130
midterm.  Once again a student did not receive a single point on his exam.
Newell has now tossed 5 shutouts this quarter.  Newell's earned exam average
has now dropped to a phenomenal 30%.
Reading is thinking with someone else's head instead of one's own.
Rules for Good Grammar #4.
         (1) Don't use no double negatives.
         (2) Make each pronoun agree with their antecedents.
         (3) Join clauses good, like a conjunction should.
         (4) About them sentence fragments.
         (5) When dangling, watch your participles.
         (6) Verbs has got to agree with their subjects.
         (7) Just between you and i, case is important.
         (8) Don't write run-on sentences when they are hard to read.
         (9) Don't use commas, which aren't necessary.
        (10) Try to not ever split infinitives.
        (11) It is important to use your apostrophe's correctly.
        (12) Proofread your writing to see if you any words out.
        (13) Correct speling is essential.
        (14) A preposition is something you never end a sentence with.
        (15) While a transcendant vocabulary is laudable, one must be eternally
             careful so that the calculated objective of communication does not
             become ensconsed in obscurity.  In other words, eschew obfuscation.
The alarm clock that is louder than God's own belongs to the roommate with
the earliest class.
        "The best thing for being sad," replied Merlin, beginning to puff
and blow, "is to learn something.  That's the only thing that never fails.
You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake at
night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love,
you may see the world about you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your
honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for
it then -- to learn.  Learn why the world wags and what wags it.  That is
the only thing which the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be
tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting.  Learning
is the only thing for you.  Look what a lot of things there are to learn."
                -- T.H. White, "The Once and Future King"
To accuse others for one's own misfortunes is a sign of want of education.
To accuse oneself shows that one's education has begun.  To accuse neither
oneself nor others shows that one's education is complete.
                -- Epictetus
Walt:        Dad, what's gradual school?
Garp:        Gradual school?
Walt:        Yeah.  Mom says her work's more fun now that she's teaching
        gradual school.
Garp:        Oh.  Well, gradual school is someplace you go and gradually
        find out that you don't want to go to school anymore.
                -- The World According To Garp
        "We're running out of adjectives to describe our situation.  We
had crisis, then we went into chaos, and now what do we call this?" said
Nicaraguan economist Francisco Mayorga, who holds a doctorate from Yale.
                -- The Washington Post, February, 1988

The New Yorker's comment:
        At Harvard they'd call it a noun.
What's page one, a preemptive strike?
                -- Professor Freund, Communication, Ramapo State College
You can't expect a boy to be vicious till he's been to a good school.
                -- H.H. Munro
A Mexican newspaper reports that bored Royal Air Force pilots stationed
on the Falkland Islands have devised what they consider a marvelous new
game.  Noting that the local penguins are fascinated by airplanes, the
pilots search out a beach where the birds are gathered and fly slowly
along it at the water's edge.  Perhaps ten thousand penguins turn their
heads in unison watching the planes go by, and when the pilots turn
around and fly back, the birds turn their heads in the opposite
direction, like spectators at a slow-motion tennis match.  Then, the
paper reports "The pilots fly out to sea and directly to the penguin
colony and overfly it.  Heads go up, up, up, and ten thousand penguins
fall over gently onto their backs.
                -- Audobon Society Magazine
A prominent broadcaster, on a big-game safari in Africa, was taken to a
watering hole where the life of the jungle could be observed. As he
looked down from his tree platform and described the scene into his
tape recorder, he saw two gnus grazing peacefully. So preoccupied were
they that they failed to observe the approach of a pride of lions led
by two magnificent specimens, obviously the leaders. The lions charged,
killed the gnus, and dragged them into the bushes where their feasting
could not be seen.  A little while later the two kings of the jungle
emerged and the radioman recorded on his tape: "Well, that's the end of
the gnus and here, once again, are the head lions."
A young girl once committed suicide because her mother refused her a new
bonnet.  Coroner's verdict: "Death from excessive spunk."
                -- Sacramento Daily Union, September 13, 1860
After two or three weeks of this madness, you begin to feel As One with
the man who said, "No news is good news." In twenty-eight papers, only
the rarest kind of luck will turn up more than two or three articles of
any interest...  but even then the interest items are usually buried deep
around paragraph 16 on the jump (or "Cont.  on ...") page...

The Post will have a story about Muskie making a speech in Iowa.  The
Star will say the same thing, and the Journal will say nothing at all.
But the Times might have enough room on the jump page to include a line
or so that says something like: "When he finished his speech, Muskie
burst into tears and seized his campaign manager by the side of the neck.
They grappled briefly, but the struggle was kicked apart by an oriental
woman who seemed to be in control."

Now that's good journalism.  Totally objective; very active and straight
to the point.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson, "Fear and Loathing '72"
And that's the way it is...
                -- Walter Cronkite
One of the signs of Napoleon's greatness is the fact that he once had a
publisher shot.
                -- Siegfried Unseld
        Reporters like Bill Greider from the Washington Post and Him
Naughton of the New York Times, for instance, had to file long, detailed,
and relatively complex stories every day -- while my own deadline fell
every two weeks -- but neither of them ever seemed in a hurry about
getting their work done, and from time to time they would try to console
me about the terrible pressure I always seemed to be laboring under.
        Any $100-an-hour psychiatrist could probably explain this problem
to me, in thirteen or fourteen sessions, but I don't have time for that.
No doubt it has something to do with a deep-seated personality defect, or
maybe a kink in whatever blood vessel leads into the pineal gland...  On
the other hand, it might be something as simple & basically perverse as
whatever instinct it is that causes a jackrabbit to wait until the last
possible second to dart across the road in front of a speeding car.
                -- Hunter S. Thompson, "Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail"
The only qualities for real success in journalism are ratlike cunning, a
plausible manner and a little literary ability.  The capacity to steal
other people's ideas and phrases ... is also invaluable.
                -- Nicolas Tomalin, "Stop the Press, I Want to Get On"
The world really isn't any worse.  It's just that the news coverage
is so much better.
America was discovered by Amerigo Vespucci and was named after him, until
people got tired of living in a place called "Vespuccia" and changed its
name to "America".
                -- Mike Harding, "The Armchair Anarchist's Almanac"
Baseball is a skilled game.  It's America's game - it, and high taxes.
        -- The Best of Will Rogers
        Carol's head ached as she trailed behind the unsmiling Calibrees
along the block of booths.  She chirruped at Kennicott, "Let's be wild!
Let's ride on the merry-go-round and grab a gold ring!"
        Kennicott considered it, and mumbled to Calibree, "Think you folks
would like to stop and try a ride on the merry-go-round?"
        Calibree considered it, and mumbled to his wife, "Think you'd like
to stop and try a ride on the merry-go-round?"
        Mrs. Calibree smiled in a washed-out manner, and sighed, "Oh no,
I don't believe I care to much, but you folks go ahead and try it."
        Calibree stated to Kennicott, "No, I don't believe we care to a
whole lot, but you folks go ahead and try it."
        Kennicott summarized the whole case against wildness: "Let's try
it some other time, Carrie."
        She gave it up.
                -- Sinclair Lewis, "Main Street"
David Letterman's "Things we can be proud of as Americans":

        * Greatest number of citizens who have actually boarded a UFO
        * Many newspapers feature "JUMBLE"
        * Hourly motel rates
        * Vast majority of Elvis movies made here
        * Didn't just give up right away during World War II
                like some countries we could mention
        * Goatees & Van Dykes thought to be worn only by weenies
        * Our well-behaved golf professionals
        * Fabulous babes coast to coast
Eli and Bessie went to sleep.
In the middle of the night, Bessie nudged Eli.
        "Please be so kindly and close the window.  It's cold outside!"
Half asleep, Eli murmured,
        "Nu ... so if I'll close the window, will it be warm outside?"
Five people -- an Englishman, Russian, American, Frenchman and Irishman
were each asked to write a book on elephants.  Some amount of time later they
had all completed their respective books.  The Englishman's book was entitled
"The Elephant -- How to Collect Them", the Russian's "The Elephant -- Vol. I",
the American's "The Elephant -- How to Make Money from Them", the Frenchman's
"The Elephant -- Its Mating Habits" and the Irishman's "The Elephant and
Irish Political History".
For some reason a glaze passes over people's faces when you say
"Canada".  Maybe we should invade South Dakota or something.
                -- Sandra Gotlieb, wife of the Canadian ambassador to the U.S.
Gay shlafen:  Yiddish for "go to sleep".

Now doesn't "gay shlafen" have a softer, more soothing sound than the
harsh, staccato "go to sleep"?  Listen to the difference:
        "Go to sleep, you little wretch!" ... "Gay shlafen, darling."
Obvious, isn't it?
        Clearly the best thing you can do for you children is to start
speaking Yiddish right now and never speak another word of English as
long as you live.  This will, of course, entail teaching Yiddish to all
your friends, business associates, the people at the supermarket, and
so on, but that's just the point.  It has to start with committed
individuals and then grow....
        Some minor adjustments will have to be made, of course: those
signs written in what look like Yiddish letters won't be funny when
everything is written in Yiddish.  And we'll have to start driving on
the left side of the road so we won't be reading the street signs
backwards.  But is that too high a price to pay for world peace?
I think not, my friend, I think not.
                -- Arthur Naiman, "Every Goy's Guide to Yiddish"
"God gives burdens; also shoulders"

Jimmy Carter cited this Jewish saying in his concession speech at the
end of the 1980 election.  At least he said it was a Jewish saying; I
can't find it anywhere.  I'm sure he's telling the truth though; why
would he lie about a thing like that?
                -- Arthur Naiman, "Every Goy's Guide to Yiddish"
        Here is the fact of the week, maybe even the fact of the month.
According to probably reliable sources, the Coca-Cola people are experiencing
severe marketing anxiety in China.
        The words "Coca-Cola" translate into Chinese as either (depending
on the inflection) "wax-fattened mare" or "bite the wax tadpole".
        Bite the wax tadpole.
        There is a sort of rough justice, is there not?
        The trouble with this fact, as lovely as it is, is that it's hard
to get a whole column out of it. I'd like to teach the world to bite a wax
tadpole.  Coke -- it's the real wax-fattened mare.  Not bad, but broad
satiric vistas do not open up.
                -- John Carrol, The San Francisco Chronicle
I shot an arrow in to the air, and it stuck.
                -- graffito in Los Angeles

On a clear day,
U.C.L.A.
                -- graffito in San Francisco

There's so much pollution in the air now that if it weren't for our
lungs there'd be no place to put it all.
                -- Robert Orben
I'm going through my "I want to go back to New York" phase today.  Happens
every six months or so.  So, I thought, perhaps unwisely, that I'd share
it with you.  

> In New York in the winter it is million degrees below zero and
  the wind travels at a million miles an hour down 5th avenue.
> And in LA it's 72.

> In New York in the summer it is a million degrees and the humidity
  is a million percent.
> And in LA it's 72.

> In New York there are a million interesting people.  
> And in LA there are 72.
Illinois isn't exactly the land that God forgot -- it's more like the
land He's trying to ignore.
In America, it's not how much an item costs, it's how much you save.
In any world menu, Canada must be considered the vichyssoise of nations --
it's cold, half-French, and difficult to stir.
                -- Stuart Keate
In Minnesota they ask why all football fields in Iowa have artificial turf.
It's so the cheerleaders won't graze during the game.
Inglish Spocken Hier: some mangled translations

        Various signs in Poland:

                Right turn toward immediate outside.

                Go soothingly in the snow, as there lurk the ski demons.

                Five o'clock tea at all hours.

        In a men's washroom in Sidney:

                Shake excess water from hands, push button to start,
                rub hands rapidly under air outlet and wipe hands
                on front of shirt.

                -- Colin Bowles, San Francisco Chronicle
Iowans ask why Minnesotans don't drink more Kool-Aid.  That's because
they can't figure out how to get two quarts of water into one of those
little paper envelopes.
It's hard to argue that God hated Oklahoma.  If He didn't, why is it so
close to Texas?
It's not Camelot, but it's not Cleveland, either.
                -- Kevin White, Mayor of Boston
It's not enough to be Hungarian; you must have talent too.
                -- Alexander Korda
It's odd, and a little unsettling, to reflect upon the fact that
English is the only major language in which "I" is capitalized; in many
other languages "You" is capitalized and the "i" is lower case.
                -- Sydney J. Harris
It's really quite a simple choice: Life, Death, or Los Angeles.
Minnesota --
        home of the blonde hair and blue ears.
        mosquito supplier to the free world.
        come fall in love with a loon.
        where visitors turn blue with envy.
        one day it's warm, the rest of the year it's cold.
        land of many cultures -- mostly throat.
        where the elite meet sleet.
        glove it or leave it.
        many are cold, but few are frozen.
        land of the ski and home of the crazed.
        land of 10,000 Petersons.
Moishe Margolies, who weighed all of 105 pounds and stood an even five feet
in his socks, was taking his first airplane trip. He took a seat next to a
hulking bruiser of a man who happened to be the heavyweight champion of
the world.  Little Moishe was uneasy enough before he even entered the plane,
but now the roar of the engines and the great height absolutely terrified him.
So frightened did he become that his stomach turned over and he threw up all
over the muscular giant siting beside him.  Fortunately, at least for Moishe,
the man was sound asleep.  But now the little man had another problem.  How in
the world would he ever explain the situation to the burly brute when he
awakened?  The sudden voice of the stewardess on the plane's intercom, finally
woke the bruiser, and Moishe, his heart in his mouth, rose to the occasion.
        "Feeling better now?" he asked solicitously.
New York now leads the world's great cities in the number of people around
whom you shouldn't make a sudden move.
                -- David Letterman
Seems that a pollster was taking a worldwide opinion poll.
Her question was, "Excuse me; what's your opinion on the meat shortage?"

In Texas, the answer was "What's a shortage?"
In Poland, the answer was "What's meat?"
In the Soviet Union, the answer was "What's an opinion?"
In New York City, the answer was "What's excuse me?"
        Some 1500 miles west of the Big Apple we find the Minneapple, a
haven of tranquility in troubled times.  It's a good town, a civilized town.
A town where they still know how to get your shirts back by Thursday.  Let
the Big Apple have the feats of "Broadway Joe" Namath.  We have known the
stolid but steady Killebrew.  Listening to Cole Porter over a dry martini
may well suit those unlucky enough never to have heard the Whoopee John Polka
Band and never to have shared a pitcher of 3.2 Grain Belt Beer.  The loss is
theirs.  And the Big Apple has yet to bake the bagel that can match peanut
butter on lefse.  Here is a town where the major urban problem is dutch elm
disease and the number one crime is overtime parking.  We boast more theater
per capita than the Big Apple.  We go to see, not to be seen.  We go even
when we must shovel ten inches of snow from the driveway to get there.  Indeed
the winters are fierce.  But then comes the marvel of the Minneapple summer.
People flock to the city's lakes to frolic and rejoice at the sight of so
much happy humanity free from the bonds of the traditional down-filled parka.
Here's to the Minneapple.  And to its people.  Our flair for style is balanced
by a healthy respect for wind chill factors.
        And we always, always eat our vegetables.
        This is the Minneapple.
Someone did a study of the three most-often-heard phrases in New York
City.  One is "Hey, taxi."  Two is, "What train do I take to get to
Bloomingdale's?"  And three is, "Don't worry.  It's just a flesh wound."
                -- David Letterman
        "Somewhere", said Father Vittorini, "did Blake not speak of the
Machineries of Joy?  That is, did not God promote environments, then
intimidate these Natures by provoking the existence of flesh, toy men and
women, such as are we all?  And thus happily sent forth, at our best, with
good grace and fine wit, on calm noons, in fair climes, are we not God's
Machineries of Joy?"
        "If Blake said that", said Father Brian, "he never lived in Dublin."
                -- R. Bradbury, "The Machineries of Joy"
The curse of the Irish is not that they don't know the words to a song --
it's that they know them *___all*.
                -- Susan Dooley
        The Martian landed his saucer in Manhattan, and immediately upon
emerging was approached by a panhandler.  "Mister," said the man, "can I
have a quarter?"
        The Martian asked, "What's a quarter?"
        The panhandler thought a minute, brightened, then said, "You're
right!  Can I have a dollar?"
        The world's most avid baseball fan (an Aggie) had arrived at the
stadium for the first game of the World Series only to realize he had left
his ticket at home.  Not wanting to miss any of the first inning, he went
to the ticket booth and got in a long line for another seat.  After an hour's
wait he was just a few feet from the booth when a voice called out, "Hey,
Dave!"  The Aggie looked up, stepped out of line and tried to find the owner
of the voice -- with no success.   Then he realized he had lost his place in
line and had to wait all over again.  When the fan finally bought his ticket,
he was thirsty, so he went to buy a drink.  The line at the concession stand
was long, too, but since the game hadn't started he decided to wait.  Just as
he got to the window, a voice called out, "Hey, Dave!"  Again the Aggie tried
to find the voice -- but no luck.  He was very upset as he got back in line
for his drink.  Finally the fan went to his seat, eager for the game to begin.
As he waited for the pitch, he heard the voice calling, "Hey Dave!" once more.
Furious, he stood up and yelled at the top of his lungs,  "My name isn't Dave!"
        There once was this swami who lived above a delicatessan.  Seems one
day he decided to stop in downstairs for some fresh liver.  Well, the owner
of the deli was a bit of a cheap-skate, and decided to pick up a little extra
change at his customer's expense.  Turning quietly to the counterman, he
whispered, "Weigh down upon the swami's liver!"
There's just something I don't like about Virginia; the state.
There's something different about us -- different from people of Europe,
Africa, Asia ... a deep and abiding belief in the Easter Bunny.
                -- G. Gordon Liddy
Three Midwesterners, a Kansan, a Missourian and an Iowan,
all appearing on a quiz program, were asked to complete this sentence:
"Old MacDonald had a . . ."

        "Old MacDonald had a carburetor," answered the Kansan.
        "Sorry, that's wrong," the game show host said.
        "Old MacDonald had a free brake alignment down at the
                service station," said the Missourian.
        "Wrong."
        "Old MacDonald had a farm," said the Iowan.
        "CORRECT!" shouts the quizmaster.  "Now for $100,000, spell 'farm.'"
        "Easy," said the Iowan. "E-I-E-I-O."
To be happy one must be a) well fed, unhounded by sordid cares, at ease in
Zion, b) full of a comfortable feeling of superiority to the masses of one's
fellow men, and c) delicately and unceasingly amused according to one's taste.
It is my contention that, if this definition be accepted, there is no country
in the world wherein a man constituted as I am -- a man of my peculiar
weaknesses, vanities, appetites, and aversions -- can be so happy as he can
be in the United States.  Going further, I lay down the doctrine that it is
a sheer physical impossibility for such a man to live in the United States
and not be happy.
                -- H.L. Mencken, "On Being An American"
Tourists -- have some fun with New York's hard-boiled cabbies.  When you
get to your destination, say to your driver, "Pay?  I was hitch-hiking."
                -- David Letterman
Traveling through New England, a motorist stopped for gas in a tiny village.
"What's this place called?" he asked the station attendant.
        "All depends," the native drawled.  "Do you mean by them that has
to live in this dad-blamed, moth-eaten, dust-covered, one-hoss dump, or
by them that's merely enjoying its quaint and picturesque rustic charms
for a short spell?"
Yawd [noun, Bostonese]:  the campus of Have Id.
                -- Webster's Unafraid Dictionary
Yes, I've now got this nice little apartment in New York, one of those
L-shaped ones.  Unfortunately, it's a lower case l.
                -- Rita Rudner
1 Billion dollars of budget deficit                = 1 Gramm-Rudman
6.023 x 10 to the 23rd power alligator pears        = Avocado's number
2 pints                                                = 1 Cavort
Basic unit of Laryngitis                        = The Hoarsepower
Shortest distance between two jokes                = A straight line
6 Curses                                        = 1 Hexahex
3500 Calories                                        = 1 Food Pound
1 Mole                                                = 007 Secret Agents
1 Mole                                                = 25 Cagey Bees
1 Dog Pound                                        = 16 oz. of Alpo
1000 beers served at a Twins game                = 1 Killibrew
2.4 statute miles of surgical tubing at Yale U. = 1 I.V.League
2000 pounds of chinese soup                        = 1 Won Ton
10 to the minus 6th power mouthwashes                = 1 Microscope
Speed of a tortoise breaking the sound barrier        = 1 Machturtle
8 Catfish                                        = 1 Octo-puss
365 Days of drinking Lo-Cal beer.                = 1 Lite-year
16.5 feet in the Twilight Zone                        = 1 Rod Serling
Force needed to accelerate 2.2lbs of cookies        = 1 Fig-newton
        to 1 meter per second
One half large intestine                        = 1 Semicolon
10 to the minus 6th power Movie                        = 1 Microfilm
1000 pains                                        = 1 Megahertz
1 Word                                                = 1 Millipicture
1 Sagan                                                = Billions & Billions
1 Angstrom: measure of computer anxiety                = 1000 nail-bytes
10 to the 12th power microphones                = 1 Megaphone
10 to the 6th power Bicycles                        = 2 megacycles
The amount of beauty required launch 1 ship        = 1 Millihelen
1.79 x 10^12 furlongs per fortnight -- it's not just a good idea, it's
the law!
A bunch of Polish scientists decided to flee their repressive government by
hijacking an airliner and forcing the pilot to fly them to the West.  They
drove to the airport, forced their way on board a large passenger jet, and
found there was no pilot on board.  Terrified, they listened as the sirens
got louder.  Finally, one of the scientists suggested that since he was an
experimentalist, he would try to fly the aircraft.
        He sat down at the controls and tried to figure them out.  The sirens
got louder and louder.  Armed men surrounded the jet.  The would be pilot's
friends cried out, "Please, please take off now!!!  Hurry!!!"
        The experimentalist calmly replied, "Have patience.  I'm just a simple
pole in a complex plane."
A gangster assembled an engineer, a chemist, and a physicist.  He explained
that he was entering a horse in a race the following week and the three
assembled guys had the job of assuring that the gangster's horse would win.
They were to reconvene the day before the race to tell the gangster how they
each propose to ensure a win.  When they reconvened the gangster started with
the engineer:
        
Gangster: OK, Mr. engineer, what have you got?
Engineer: Well, I've invented a way to weave metallic threads into the saddle
          blanket so that they will act as the plates of a battery and provide
          electrical shock to the horse.
G:          That's very good!  But let's hear from the chemist.
Chemist:  I've synthesized a powerful stimulant that disolves
          into simple blood sugars after ten minutes and therefore
          cannot be detected in post-race tests.
G:          Excellent, excellent!  But I want to hear from the physicist before
          I decide what to do.  Physicist?  
Physicist: Well, first consider a spherical horse in simple harmonic motion...
A mathematician, a doctor, and an engineer are walking on the beach and
observe a team of lifeguards pumping the stomach of a drowned woman.  As
they watch, water, sand, snails and such come out of the pump.
        The doctor watches for a while and says: "Keep pumping, men, you may
yet save her!!"
        The mathematician does some calculations and says: "According to my
understanding of the size of that pump, you have already pumped more water
from her body than could be contained in a cylinder 4 feet in diameter and
6 feet high."
        The engineer says: "I think she's sitting in a puddle."
A physicist is an atom's way of knowing about atoms.
                -- George Wald
A rope lying over the top of a fence is the same length on each side.  It
weighs one third of a pound per foot.  On one end hangs a monkey holding a
banana, and on the other end a weight equal to the weight of the monkey.
The banana weighs two ounces per inch.  The rope is as long (in feet) as
the age of the monkey (in years), and the weight of the monkey (in ounces)
is the same as the age of the monkey's mother.  The combined age of the
monkey and its mother is thirty years.  One half of the weight of the monkey,
plus the weight of the banana, is one forth as much as the weight of the
weight and the weight of the rope.  The monkey's mother is half as old as
the monkey will be when it is three times as old as its mother was when she
she was half as old as the monkey will be when when it is as old as its mother
will be when she is four times as old as the monkey was when it was twice
as its mother was when she was one third as old as the monkey was when it
was old as is mother was when she was three times as old as the monkey was
when it was one fourth as old as it is now.  How long is the banana?
A Severe Strain on the Credulity
        As a method of sending a missile to the higher, and even to the
highest parts of the earth's atmospheric envelope, Professor Goddard's rocket
is a practicable and therefore promising device. It is when one considers the
multiple-charge rocket as a traveler to the moon that one begins to doubt...
for after the rocket quits our air and really starts on its journey, its
flight would be neither accelerated nor maintained by the explosion of the
charges it then might have left.  Professor Goddard, with his "chair" in
Clark College and countenancing of the Smithsonian Institution, does not
know the relation of action to re-action, and of the need to have something
better than a vacuum against which to react... Of course he only seems to
lack the knowledge ladled out daily in high schools.
                -- New York Times Editorial, 1920
        After the Children of Israel had wandered for thirty-nine years
in the wilderness, Ferdinand Feghoot arrived to make sure that they would
finally find and enter the Promised Land.  With him, he brought his
favorite robot, faithful old Yewtoo Artoo, to carry his gear and do
assorted camp chores.
        The Israelites soon got over their initial fear of the robot and,
as the months passed, became very fond of him.  Patriarchs took to
discussing abtruse theological problems with him, and each evening the
children all gathered to hear the many stories with which he was programmed.
Therefore it came as a great shock to them when, just as their journey was
ending, he abruptly wore out.  Even Feghoot couldn't console them.
        "It may be true, Ferdinand Feghoot," said Moses, "that our friend
Yewtoo Artoo was soulless, but we cannot believe it.  He must be properly
interred.  We cannot embalm him as do the Egyptians.  Nor have we wood for
a coffin.  But I do have a most splendid skin from one of Pharoah's own
cattle.  We shall bury him in it."
        Feghoot agreed.  "Yes, let this be his last rusting place."
        "Rusting?" Moses cried.  "Not in this dreadful dry desert!"
        "Ah!" sighed Ferdinand Feghoot, shedding a tear, "I fear you do not
realize the full significance of Pharoah's oxhide!"
                -- Grendel Briarton "Through Time & Space With Ferdinand
                   Feghoot!"
After this was written there appeared a remarkable posthumous memoir that
throws some doubt on Millikan's leading role in these experiments.  Harvey
Fletcher (1884-1981), who was a graduate student at the University of Chicago,
at Millikan's suggestion worked on the measurement of electronic charge for
his doctoral thesis, and co-authored some of the early papers on this subject
with Millikan.  Fletcher left a manuscript with a friend with instructions
that it be published after his death; the manuscript was published in
Physics Today, June 1982, page 43.  In it, Fletcher claims that he was the
first to do the experiment with oil drops, was the first to measure charges on
single droplets, and may have been the first to suggest the use of oil.
According to Fletcher, he had expected to be co-authored with Millikan on
the crucial first article announcing the measurement of the electronic
charge, but was talked out of this by Millikan.
                -- Steven Weinberg, "The Discovery of Subatomic Particles"

Robert Millikan is generally credited with making the first really
precise measurement of the charge on an electron and was awarded the
Nobel Prize in 1923.
        Against his wishes, a math teacher's classroom was remodeled.  Ever
since, he's been talking about the good old dais.  His students planted a small
orchard in his honor; the trees all have square roots.
All the evidence concerning the universe has not yet been collected,
so there's still hope.
Although we modern persons tend to take our electric lights, radios, mixers,
etc., for granted, hundreds of years ago people did not have any of these
things, which is just as well because there was no place to plug them in.
Then along came the first Electrical Pioneer, Benjamin Franklin, who flew a
kite in a lighting storm and received a serious electrical shock.  This
proved that lighting was powered by the same force as carpets, but it also
damaged Franklin's brain so severely that he started speaking only in
incomprehensible maxims, such as "A penny saved is a penny earned."
Eventually he had to be given a job running the post office.
                -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?"
Always try to do things in chronological order; it's less confusing that way.
An American scientist once visited the offices of the great Nobel prize
winning physicist, Niels Bohr, in Copenhagen.  He was amazed to find that
over Bohr's desk was a horseshoe, securely nailed to the wall, with the
open end up in the approved manner (so it would catch the good luck and not
let it spill out).  The American said with a nervous laugh,
        "Surely you don't believe the horseshoe will bring you good luck,
do you, Professor Bohr?  After all, as a scientist --"
Bohr chuckled.
        "I believe no such thing, my good friend.  Not at all.  I am
scarcely likely to believe in such foolish nonsense.  However, I am told
that a horseshoe will bring you good luck whether you believe in it or not."
        An architect's first work is apt to be spare and clean.  He knows
he doesn't know what he's doing, so he does it carefully and with great
restraint.
        As he designs the first work, frill after frill and embellishment
after embellishment occur to him.  These get stored away to be used "next
time." Sooner or later the first system is finished, and the architect,
with firm confidence and a demonstrated mastery of that class of systems,
is ready to build a second system.
        This second is the most dangerous system a man ever designs.
When he does his third and later ones, his prior experiences will
confirm each other as to the general characteristics of such systems,
and their differences will identify those parts of his experience that
are particular and not generalizable.
        The general tendency is to over-design the second system, using
all the ideas and frills that were cautiously sidetracked on the first
one.  The result, as Ovid says, is a "big pile."
                -- Frederick Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"
And the French medical anatomist Etienne Serres really did argue that
black males are primitive because the distance between their navel and
penis remains small (relative to body height) throughout life, while
white children begin with a small separation but increase it during
growth -- the rising belly button as a mark of progress.
                -- S.J. Gould, "Racism and Recapitulation"
"Anything created must necessarily be inferior to the essence of the creator."
                -- Claude Shouse

"Einstein's mother must have been one heck of a physicist."
                -- Joseph C. Wang
At any given moment, an arrow must be either where it is or where it is
not.  But obviously it cannot be where it is not.  And if it is where
it is, that is equivalent to saying that it is at rest.
                -- Zeno's paradox of the moving (still?) arrow
Back in the early 60's, touch tone phones only had 10 buttons.  Some
military versions had 16, while the 12 button jobs were used only by people
who had "diva" (digital inquiry, voice answerback) systems -- mainly banks.
Since in those days, only Western Electric  made "data sets" (modems) the
problems of terminology were all Bell System.  We used to struggle with
written descriptions of dial pads that were unfamiliar to most people
(most phones were rotary then.)  Partly in jest, some AT&T engineering
types (there was no marketing in the good old days, which is why they were
the good old days) made up the term "octalthorpe" (note spelling) to denote
the "pound sign."  Presumably because it has 8 points sticking out.  It
never really caught on.
Before Xerox, five carbons were the maximum extension of anybody's ego.
Besides the device, the box should contain:
        * Eight little rectangular snippets of paper that say "WARNING"
        * A plastic packet containing four 5/17 inch pilfer grommets and two
                club-ended 6/93 inch boxcar prawns.

YOU WILL NEED TO SUPPLY: a matrix wrench and 60,000 feet of tram cable.

IF ANYTHING IS DAMAGED OR MISSING: You IMMEDIATELY should turn to your spouse
and say: "Margaret, you know why this country can't make a car that can get
all the way through the drive-through at Burger King without a major
transmission overhaul?  Because nobody cares, that's why."

WARNING: This is assuming your spouse's name is Margaret.
                -- Dave Barry, "Read This First!"
Bistromathics is simply a revolutionary new way of understanding the
behavior of numbers.  Just as Einstein observed that space was not an
absolute, but depended on the observer's movement in space, and that
time was not an absolute, but depended on the observer's movement in
time, so it is now realized that numbers are not absolute, but depend
on the observer's movement in restaurants.
                -- Douglas Adams
Chapter 2:  Newtonian Growth and Decay

        The growth-decay formulas were developed in the trivial fashion by
Isaac Newton's famous brother Phigg.  His idea was to provide an equation
that would describe a quantity that would dwindle and dwindle, but never
quite reach zero.  Historically, he was merely trying to work out his
mortgage.  Another versatile equation also emerged, one which would define
a function that would continue to grow, but never reach unity.  This equation
can be applied to charging capacitors, over-damped springs, and the human
race in general.
Congratulations!  You have purchased an extremely fine device that would
give you thousands of years of trouble-free service, except that you
undoubtably will destroy it via some typical bonehead consumer maneuver.
Which is why we ask you to PLEASE FOR GOD'S SAKE READ THIS OWNER'S MANUAL
CAREFULLY BEFORE YOU UNPACK THE DEVICE.  YOU ALREADY UNPACKED IT, DIDN'T
YOU?  YOU UNPACKED IT AND PLUGGED IT IN AND TURNED IT ON AND FIDDLED WITH
THE KNOBS, AND NOW YOUR CHILD, THE SAME CHILD WHO ONCE SHOVED A POLISH
SAUSAGE INTO YOUR VIDEOCASSETTE RECORDER AND SET IT ON "FAST FORWARD", THIS
CHILD ALSO IS FIDDLING WITH THE KNOBS, RIGHT?  AND YOU'RE JUST NOW STARTING
TO READ THE INSTRUCTIONS, RIGHT???  WE MIGHT AS WELL JUST BREAK THESE
DEVICES RIGHT AT THE FACTORY BEFORE WE SHIP THEM OUT, YOU KNOW THAT?
                -- Dave Barry, "Read This First!"
"Contrariwise," continued Tweedledee, "if it was so, it might be, and
if it were so, it would be; but as it isn't, it ain't.  That's logic!"
                -- Lewis Carroll, "Through the Looking Glass"
"Deep" is a word like "theory" or "semantic" -- it implies all sorts of
marvelous things.  It's one thing to be able to say "I've got a theory",
quite another to say "I've got a semantic theory", but, ah, those who can
claim "I've got a deep semantic theory", they are truly blessed.
                -- Randy Davis
Did you hear that there's a group of South American Indians that worship
the number zero?

Is nothing sacred?
Elegance and truth are inversely related.
                -- Becker's Razor
Everything that can be invented has been invented.
                -- Charles Duell, Director of U.S. Patent Office, 1899
Everything you've learned in school as "obvious" becomes less and less
obvious as you begin to study the universe.  For example, there are no
solids in the universe.  There's not even a suggestion of a solid.
There are no absolute continuums.  There are no surfaces.  There are no
straight lines.
                -- R. Buckminster Fuller
Factorials were someone's attempt to make math LOOK exciting.
Florence Flask was ... dressing for the opera when she turned to her
husband and screamed, "Erlenmeyer!  My joules!  Someone has stolen my
joules!"

"Now, now, my dear," replied her husband, "keep your balance and reflux
a moment.  Perhaps they're mislead."

"No, I know they're stolen," cried Florence.  "I remember putting them
in my burette ... We must call a copper."

Erlenmeyer did so, and the flatfoot who turned up, one Sherlock Ohms,
said the outrage looked like the work of an arch-criminal by the name
of Lawrence Ium.

"We must be careful -- he's a free radical, ultraviolet, and
dangerous.  His girlfriend is a chlorine at the Palladium.  Maybe I can
catch him there."  With that, he jumped on his carbon cycle in an
activated state and sped off along the reaction pathway ...
                -- Daniel B. Murphy, "Precipitations"
For God's sake, stop researching for a while and begin to think!
Fortunately, the responsibility for providing evidence is on the part of
the person making the claim, not the critic.  It is not the responsibility
of UFO skeptics to prove that a UFO has never existed, nor is it the
responsibility of paranormal-health-claims skeptics to prove that crystals
or colored lights never healed anyone.  The skeptic's role is to point out
claims that are not adequately supported by acceptable evidcence and to
provide plausible alternative explanations that are more in keeping with
the accepted body of scientific evidence.
                -- Thomas L. Creed, The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. XII,
                   No. 2, pg. 215
FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL:                #1
        A guinea pig is not from Guinea but a rodent from South America.
        A firefly is not a fly, but a beetle.
        A giant panda bear is really a member of the racoon family.
        A black panther is really a leopard that has a solid black coat
            rather then a spotted one.
        Peanuts are not really nuts.  The majority of nuts grow on trees
                while peauts grow underground.  They are classified as a
                legume -- part of the pea family.
        A cucumber is not a vegetable but a fruit.
FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL:                #44
        Zebras are colored with dark stripes on a light background.
FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #14
What to do...
    if reality disappears?
        Hope this one doesn't happen to you.  There isn't much that you
        can do about it.  It will probably be quite unpleasant.

    if you meet an older version of yourself who has invented a time
    traveling machine, and has come from the future to meet you?
        Play this one by the book.  Ask about the stock market and cash in.
        Don't forget to invent a time traveling machine and visit your
        younger self before you die, or you will create a paradox.  If you
        expect this to be tricky, make sure to ask for the principles
        behind time travel, and possibly schematics.  Never, NEVER, ask
        when you'll die, or if you'll marry your current SO.
FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #2
What to do...
    if you get a phone call from Mars:
        Speak slowly and be sure to enunciate your words properly.  Limit
        your vocabulary to simple words.  Try to determine if you are
        speaking to someone in a leadership capacity, or an ordinary citizen.

    if he, she or it doesn't speak English?
        Hang up.  There's no sense in trying to learn Martian over the phone.
        If your Martian really had something important to say to you, he, she
        or it would have taken the trouble to learn the language before
        calling.

    if you get a phone call from Jupiter?
        Explain to your caller, politely but firmly, that being from Jupiter,
        he, she or it is not "life as we know it".  Try to terminate the
        conversation as soon as possible.  It will not profit you, and the
        charges may have been reversed.
FORTUNE'S GUIDE TO DEALING WITH REAL-LIFE SCIENCE FICTION: #6
What to do...
    if a starship, equipped with an FTL hyperdrive lands in your backyard?
        First of all, do not run after your camera.  You will not have any
        film, and, given the state of computer animation, noone will believe
        you anyway.  Be polite.  Remember, if they have an FTL hyperdrive,
        they can probably vaporize you, should they find you to be rude.
        Direct them to the White House lawn, which is where they probably
        wanted to land, anyway.  A good road map should help.

    if you wake up in the middle of the night, and discover that your
    closet contains an alternate dimension?
        Don't walk in.  You almost certainly will not be able to get back,
        and alternate dimensions are almost never any fun.  Remain calm
        and go back to bed.  Close the door first, so that the cat does not
        wander off.  Check your closet in the morning.  If it still contains
        an alternate dimension, nail it shut.
Good morning.  This is the telephone company.  Due to repairs, we're
giving you advance notice that your service will be cut off indefinitely
at ten o'clock.  That's two minutes from now.
Gosh that takes me back... or is it forward?  That's the trouble with
time travel, you never can tell."
                -- Doctor Who, "Androids of Tara"
He:        Let's end it all, bequeathin' our brains to science.
She:        What?!?  Science got enough trouble with their OWN brains.
                -- Walt Kelly
Heard that the next Space Shuttle is supposed to carry several Guernsey cows?
It's gonna be the herd shot 'round the world.
Here is a simple experiment that will teach you an important electrical
lesson: On a cool, dry day, scuff your feet along a carpet, then reach your
hand into a friend's mouth and touch one of his dental fillings.  Did you
notice how your friend twitched violently and cried out in pain?  This
teaches us that electricity can be a very powerful force, but we must never
use it to hurt others unless we need to learn an important electrical lesson.
        It also teaches us how an electrical circuit works.  When you scuffed
your feet, you picked up batches of "electrons", which are very small objects
that carpet manufacturers weave into carpets so they will attract dirt.
The electrons travel through your bloodstream and collect in your finger,
where they form a spark that leaps to your friend's filling, then travels
down to his feet and back into the carpet, thus completing the circuit.
        Amazing Electronic Fact: If you scuffed your feet long enough without
touching anything, you would build up so many electrons that your finger
would explode!  But this is nothing to worry about unless you have
carpeting.
                -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?"
I do not remember ever having seen a sustained argument by an author which,
starting from philosophical premises likely to meet with general acceptance,
reached the conclusion that a praiseworthy ordering of one's life is to
devote it to research in mathematics.
                -- Sir Edmund Whittaker, "Scientific American", Vol. 183
I had a feeling once about mathematics -- that I saw it all.  Depth beyond
depth was revealed to me -- the Byss and the Abyss. I saw -- as one might
see the transit of Venus or even the Lord Mayor's Show -- a quantity passing
through infinity and changing its sign from plus to minus.  I saw exactly
why it happened and why tergiversation was inevitable -- but it was after
dinner and I let it go.
                -- Winston Churchill
I have a theory that it's impossible to prove anything, but I can't prove it.
I myself have dreamed up a structure intermediate between Dyson spheres
and planets.  Build a ring 93 million miles in radius -- one Earth orbit
-- around the sun.  If we have the mass of Jupiter to work with, and if
we make it a thousand miles wide, we get a thickness of about a thousand
feet for the base.

And it has advantages.  The Ringworld will be much sturdier than a Dyson
sphere.  We can spin it on its axis for gravity.  A rotation speed of 770
m/s will give us a gravity of one Earth normal.  We wouldn't even need to
roof it over.  Place walls one thousand miles high at each edge, facing the
sun.  Very little air will leak over the edges.

Lord knows the thing is roomy enough.  With three million times the surface
area of the Earth, it will be some time before anyone complains of the
crowding.
                -- Larry Niven, "Ringworld"
"I think the sky is blue because it's a shift from black through purple
to blue, and it has to do with where the light is.  You know, the
farther we get into darkness, and there's a shifting of color of light
into the blueness, and I think as you go farther and farther away from
the reflected light we have from the sun or the light that's bouncing
off this earth, uh, the darker it gets ... I think if you look at the
color scale, you start at black, move it through purple, move it on
out, it's the shifting of color.  We mentioned before about the stars
singing, and that's one of the effects of the shifting of colors."
                -- Pat Robertson, The 700 Club
I'm often asked the question, "Do you think there is extraterrestrial intelli-
gence?"  I give the standard arguments -- there are a lot of places out there,
and use the word *billions*, and so on.  And then I say it would be astonishing
to me if there weren't extraterrestrial intelligence, but of course there is as
yet no compelling evidence for it.  And then I'm asked, "Yeah, but what do you
really think?"  I say, "I just told you what I really think."  "Yeah, but
what's your gut feeling?"  But I try not to think with my gut.  Really, it's
okay to reserve judgment until the evidence is in.
                -- Carl Sagan
If a camel is a horse designed by a committee, then a consensus forecast is a
camel's behind.
                -- Edgar R. Fiedler
If all the world's economists were laid end to end, we wouldn't reach a
conclusion.
                -- William Baumol
If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.
If I set here and stare at nothing long enough, people might think
I'm an engineer working on something.
                -- S.R. McElroy
If it smells it's chemistry, if it crawls it's biology, if it doesn't work
it's physics.
        If you rap your knuckles against a window jamb or door, if you
brush your leg against a bed or desk, if you catch your foot in a curled-
up corner of a rug, or strike a toe against a desk or chair, go back and
repeat the sequence.
        You will find yourself surprised how far off course you were to
hit that window jamb, that door, that chair.  Get back on course and do it
again.  How can you pilot a spacecraft if you can't find your way around
your own apartment?
                -- William S. Burroughs
If you steal from one author it's plagiarism; if you steal from
many it's research.
                -- Wilson Mizner
In order to dial out, it is necessary to broaden one's dimension.
In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really
good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they actually change
their minds and you never hear that old view from them again.  They really
do it.  It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are
human and change is sometimes painful.  But it happens every day.  I cannot
recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion.
                -- Carl Sagan, 1987 CSICOP keynote address
In specifications, Murphy's Law supersedes Ohm's.
In the course of reading Hadamard's "The Psychology of Invention in the
Mathematical Field", I have come across evidence supporting a fact
which we coffee achievers have long appreciated:  no really creative,
intelligent thought is possible without a good cup of coffee.  On page
14, Hadamard is discussing Poincare's theory of fuchsian groups and
fuchsian functions, which he describes as "... one of his greatest
discoveries, the first which consecrated his glory ..."  Hadamard refers
to Poincare having had a "... sleepless night which initiated all that
memorable work ..." and gives the following, very revealing quote:

        "One evening, contrary to my custom, I drank black coffee and
        could not sleep.  Ideas rose in crowds;  I felt them collide
        until pairs interlocked, so to speak, making a stable
        combination."

Too bad drinking black coffee was contrary to his custom.  Maybe he
could really have amounted to something as a coffee achiever.
        "In this replacement Earth we're building they've given me Africa
to do and of course I'm doing it with all fjords again because I happen to
like them, and I'm old-fashioned enough to think that they give a lovely
baroque feel to a continent.  And they tell me it's not equatorial enough.
Equatorial!"  He gave a hollow laugh.  "What does it matter?  Science has
achieved some wonderful things, of course, but I'd far rather be happy than
right any day."
        "And are you?"
        "No.  That's where it all falls down, of course."
        "Pity," said Arthur with sympathy.  "It sounded like quite a good
life-style otherwise."
                -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
"It could be that Walter's horse has wings" does not imply that there is
any such animal as Walter's horse, only that there could be; but "Walter's
horse is a thing which could have wings" does imply Walter's horse's
existence.  But the conjunction "Walter's horse exists, and it could be
that Walter's horse has wings" still does not imply "Walter's horse is a
thing that could have wings", for perhaps it can only be that Walter's
horse has wings by Walter having a different horse.  Nor does "Walter's
horse is a thing which could have wings" conversely imply "It could be that
Walter's horse has wings"; for it might be that Walter's horse could only
have wings by not being Walter's horse.

I would deny, though, that the formula [Necessarily if some x has property P
then some x has property P] expresses a logical law, since P(x) could stand
for, let us say "x is a better logician than I am", and the statement "It is
necessary that if someone is a better logician than I am then someone is a
better logician than I am" is false because there need not have been any me.
                -- A.N. Prior, "Time and Modality"
It is impossible to travel faster than light, and certainly not desirable,
as one's hat keeps blowing off.
                -- Woody Allen
It is true that if your paperboy throws your paper into the bushes for five
straight days it can be explained by Newton's Law of Gravity.  But it takes
Murphy's law to explain why it is happening to you.
"It's easier said than done."

... and if you don't believe it, try proving that it's easier done than
said, and you'll see that "it's easier said that `it's easier done than
said' than it is done", which really proves that "it's easier said than
done".
It's hard to think of you as the end result of millions of years of evolution.
It's later than you think, the joint Russian-American space mission has
already begun.
It's not an optical illusion, it just looks like one.
                -- Phil White
It's not hard to admit errors that are [only] cosmetically wrong.
                -- J.K. Galbraith
Murphy's Law, that brash proletarian restatement of Godel's Theorem.
                -- Thomas Pynchon, "Gravity's Rainbow"
My geometry teacher was sometimes acute, and sometimes obtuse, but always,
always, he was right.
        [That's an interesting angle.  I wonder if there are any parallels?]
        My message is not that biological determinists were bad scientists or
even that they were always wrong.  Rather, I believe that science must be
understood as a social phenomenon, a gutsy, human enterprise, not the work of
robots programmed to collect pure information.  I also present this view as
an upbeat for science, not as a gloomy epitaph for a noble hope sacrificed on
the alter of human limitations.
        I believe that a factual reality exists and that science, though often
in an obtuse and erratic manner, can learn about it.  Galileo was not shown
the instruments of torture in an abstract debate about lunar motion.  He had
threatened the Church's conventional argument for social and doctrinal
stability:  the static world order with planets circling about a central
earth, priests subordinate to the Pope and serfs to their lord.  But the
Church soon made its peace with Galileo's cosmology.  They had no choice; the
earth really does revolve about the sun.
                -- S.J. Gould, "The Mismeasure of Man"
Never worry about theory as long as the machinery does what it's supposed to do.
                -- R. A. Heinlein
Once upon a time, when I was training to be a mathematician, a group of
us bright young students taking number theory discovered the names of the
smaller prime numbers.

2:  The Odd Prime --
        It's the only even prime, therefore is odd.  QED.
3:  The True Prime --
        Lewis Carroll: "If I tell you 3 times, it's true."
31: The Arbitrary Prime --
        Determined by unanimous unvote.  We needed an arbitrary prime in
        case the prof asked for one, and so had an election.  91 received
        the most votes (well, it *looks* prime) and 3+4i the next most.
        However, 31 was the only candidate to receive none at all.
41: The Female Prime --
        The polynomial X**2 - X + 41 is
        prime for integer values from 1 to 40.
43: The Male Prime - they form a prime pair.

Since the composite numbers are formed from primes, their qualities
are derived from those primes.  So, for instance, the number 6 is "odd
but true", while the powers of 2 are all extremely odd numbers.
One day this guy is finally fed up with his middle-class existence and
decides to do something about it.  He calls up his best friend, who is a
mathematical genius.  "Look," he says, "do you suppose you could find some
way mathematically of guaranteeing winning at the race track?  We could
make a lot of money and retire and enjoy life."  The mathematician thinks
this over a bit and walks away mumbling to himself.
        A week later his friend drops by to ask the genius if he's had any
success.  The genius, looking a little bleary-eyed, replies, "Well, yes,
actually I do have an idea, and I'm reasonably sure that it will work, but
there a number of details to be figured out.
        After the second week the mathematician appears at his friend's house,
looking quite a bit rumpled, and announces, "I think I've got it! I still have
some of the theory to work out, but now I'm certain that I'm on the right
track."
        At the end of the third week the mathematician wakes his friend by
pounding on his door at three in the morning.  He has dark circles under his
eyes.  His hair hasn't been combed for many days.  He appears to be wearing
the same clothes as the last time.  He has several pencils sticking out from
behind his ears and an almost maniacal expression on his face.  "WE CAN DO
IT!  WE CAN DO IT!!" he shrieks. "I have discovered the perfect solution!!
And it's so EASY!  First, we assume that horses are perfect spheres in simple
harmonic motion..."
One man's "magic" is another man's engineering.  "Supernatural" is a null word.
                -- Robert Heinlein
One man's constant is another man's variable.
                -- A.J. Perlis
Oxygen is a very toxic gas and an extreme fire hazard.  It is fatal in
concentrations of as little as 0.000001 p.p.m.  Humans exposed to the
oxygen concentrations die within a few minutes.  Symptoms resemble very
much those of cyanide poisoning (blue face, etc.).  In higher
concentrations, e.g. 20%, the toxic effect is somewhat delayed and it
takes about 2.5 billion inhalations before death takes place.  The reason
for the delay is the difference in the mechanism of the toxic effect of
oxygen in 20% concentration.  It apparently contributes to a complex
process called aging, of which very little is known, except that it is
always fatal.

However, the main disadvantage of the 20% oxygen concentration is in the
fact it is habit forming.  The first inhalation (occurring at birth) is
sufficient to make oxygen addiction permanent.  After that, any
considerable decrease in the daily oxygen doses results in death with
symptoms resembling those of cyanide poisoning.

Oxygen is an extreme fire hazard.  All of the fires that were reported in
the continental U.S. for the period of the past 25 years were found to be
due to the presence of this gas in the atmosphere surrounding the buildings
in question.

Oxygen is especially dangerous because it is odorless, colorless and
tasteless, so that its presence can not be readily detected until it is
too late.
                -- Chemical & Engineering News February 6, 1956
Proof techniques #1: Proof by Induction.

This technique is used on equations with "_n" in them.  Induction
techniques are very popular, even the military used them.

SAMPLE: Proof of induction without proof of induction.

        We know it's true for _n equal to 1.  Now assume that it's true
for every natural number less than _n.  _N is arbitrary, so we can take _n
as large as we want.  If _n is sufficiently large, the case of _n+1 is
trivially equivalent, so the only important _n are _n less than _n.  We
can take _n = _n (from above), so it's true for _n+1 because it's just
about _n.
        QED.        (QED translates from the Latin as "So what?")
Quantum Mechanics is a lovely introduction to Hilbert Spaces!
                -- Overheard at last year's Archimedeans' Garden Party
Quantum Mechanics is God's version of "Trust me."
Review Questions

(1) If Nerd on the planet Nutley starts out in his spaceship at 20 KPH,
    and his speed doubles every 3.2 seconds, how long will it be before
    he exceeds the speed of light?  How long will it be before the
    Galactic Patrol picks up the pieces of his spaceship?

(2) If Roger Rowdy wrecks his car every week, and each week he breaks
    twice as many bones as before, how long will it be before he breaks
    every bone in his body?  How long will it be before they cut off
    his insurance?  Where does he get a new car every week?

(3) If Johnson drinks one beer the first hour (slow start), four beers
    the next hour, nine beers the next, etc., and stacks the cans in a
    pyramid, how soon will Johnson's pyramid be larger than King
    Tut's?  When will it fall on him?  Will he notice?
Space is big.  You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly
big it is.  I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the
drug store, but that's just peanuts to space.
                -- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Stuckness shouldn't be avoided.  It's the psychic predecessor of all
real understanding.  An egoless acceptance of stuckness is a key to an
understanding of all Quality, in mechanical work as in other endeavors.
                -- R. Pirsig, "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance"
Support bacteria -- it's the only culture some people have!
That's one small step for a man; one giant leap for mankind.
                -- Neil Armstrong
The ark lands after The Flood.  Noah lets all the animals out.  Says he, "Go
and multiply."  Several months pass.  Noah decides to check up on the animals.
All are doing fine except a pair of snakes.  "What's the problem?" says Noah.
"Cut down some trees and let us live there", say the snakes.  Noah follows
their advice.  Several more weeks pass.  Noah checks on the snakes again.
Lots of little snakes, everybody is happy.  Noah asks, "Want to tell me how
the trees helped?"  "Certainly", say the snakes. "We're adders, and we need
logs to multiply."
The bomb will never go off.  I speak as an expert in explosives.
                -- Admiral William Leahy, U.S. Atomic Bomb Project
The Encyclopaedia Galactica defines a robot as a mechanical apparatus designed
to do the work of a man.  The marketing division of Sirius Cybernetics
Corporation defines a robot as 'Your Plastic Pal Who's Fun To Be With'.
The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy defines the marketing division of the
Sirius Cybernetics Corporation as 'a bunch of mindless jerks who'll be the
first against the wall when the revolution comes', with a footnote to effect
that the editors would welcome applications from anyone interested in taking
over the post of robotics correspondent.
        Curiously enough, an edition of the Encyclopaedia Galactica that
had the good fortune to fall through a time warp from a thousand years in
the future defined the marketing division of the Sirius Cybernetics
Corporation as 'a bunch of mindless jerks who were the first against the
wall when the revolution came'.
                -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
The Force is what holds everything together.  It has its dark side, and
it has its light side.  It's sort of like cosmic duct tape.
The Man Who Almost Invented The Vacuum Cleaner
        The man officially credited with inventing the vacuum cleaner is
Hubert Cecil Booth.  However, he got the idea from a man who almost
invented it.  
        In 1901 Booth visited a London music-hall.  On the bill was an
American inventor with his wonder machine for removing dust from carpets.
        The machine comprised a box about one foot square with a bag on top.
After watching the act -- which made everyone in the front six rows sneeze
-- Booth went round to the inventor's dressing room.
        "It should suck not blow," said Booth, coming straight to the
point.  "Suck?", exclaimed the enraged inventor.  "Your machine just moves
the dust around the room," Booth informed him.  "Suck?  Suck?  Sucking is
not possible," was the inventor's reply and he stormed out.  Booth proved
that it was by the simple expedient of kneeling down, pursing his lips and
sucking the back of an armchair.  "I almost choked," he said afterwards.
                -- Stephen Pile, "The Book of Heroic Failures"
The marvels of today's modern technology include the development of a
soda can, when discarded will last forever ... and a $7,000 car which
when properly cared for will rust out in two or three years.
The moon may be smaller than Earth, but it's further away.
The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new
discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but "That's funny ..."
                -- Isaac Asimov
The reason that every major university maintains a department of
mathematics is that it's cheaper than institutionalizing all those people.
The spirit of Plato dies hard.  We have been unable to escape the philosophical
tradition that what we can see and measure in the world is merely the
superficial and imperfect representation of an underlying reality.
                -- S.J. Gould, "The Mismeasure of Man"
There are three schools of magic.  One:  State a tautology, then ring the
changes on its corollaries; that's philosophy.  Two:  Record many facts.
Try to find a pattern.  Then make a wrong guess at the next fact; that's
science.  Three:  Be aware that you live in a malevolent Universe controlled
by Murphy's Law, sometimes offset by Brewster's Factor; that's engineering.
There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what
the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be
replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable.  There is another
theory which states that this has already happened.
                -- Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"
        There was a mad scientist (a mad... social... scientist) who kidnapped
three colleagues, an engineer, a physicist, and a mathematician, and locked
each of them in seperate cells with plenty of canned food and water but no
can opener.
        A month later, returning, the mad scientist went to the engineer's
cell and found it long empty.  The engineer had constructed a can opener from
pocket trash, used aluminum shavings and dried sugar to make an explosive,
and escaped.
        The physicist had worked out the angle necessary to knock the lids
off the tin cans by throwing them against the wall.  She was developing a good
pitching arm and a new quantum theory.
        The mathematician had stacked the unopened cans into a surprising
solution to the kissing problem; his dessicated corpse was propped calmly
against a wall, and this was inscribed on the floor:
        Theorem: If I can't open these cans, I'll die.
        Proof: assume the opposite...
There's a whole WORLD in a mud puddle!
                -- Doug Clifford
There's no future in time travel.
There's no sense in being precise when you don't even know what you're talking
about.
                -- John von Neumann
This isn't true in practice -- what we've missed out is Stradivarius's
constant.  And then the aside: "For those of you who don't know, that's
been called by others the fiddle factor..."
                -- From a 1B Electrical Engineering lecture.
Three great scientific theories of the structure of the universe are the
molecular, the corpuscular and the atomic.  A fourth affirms, with
Haeckel, the condensation or precipitation of matter from ether -- whose
existence is proved by the condensation or precipitation ... A fifth
theory is held by idiots, but it is doubtful if they know any more about
the matter than the others.
                -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"
Time is nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen at once.

Space is nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen to you.
TIRED of calculating components of vectors?  Displacements along direction of
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Gumbinowitz, mechanical engineer, in a hidden-camera interview...
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        never been easier."
Yes, you too can take advantage of the amazing properties of Dot-Product.  Use
it to calculate forces, velocities, displacements, and virtually any vector
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Call 1-800-DOT-6000.  Operators are standing by.  That number again...
1-800-DOT-6000.  Supplies are limited, so act now.  This offer is not
available through stores and is void where prohibited by law.
Today's scientific question is: What in the world is electricity?

And where does it go after it leaves the toaster?
                -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?"
Top scientists agree that with the present rate of consumption, the earth's
supply of gravity will be exhausted before the 24th century. As man
struggles to discover cheaper alternatives, we need your help. Please...

                        CONSERVE GRAVITY

Follow these simple suggestions:

(1)  Walk with a light step.  Carry helium balloons if possible.
(2)  Use tape, magnets, or glue instead of paperweights.
(3)  Give up skiing and skydiving for more horizontal sports like curling.
(4)  Avoid showers .. take baths instead.
(5)  Don't hang all your clothes in the closet ... Keep them in one big pile.
(6)  Stop flipping pancakes
Two men are in a hot-air balloon.  Soon, they find themselves lost in a
canyon somewhere.  One of the three men says, "I've got an idea.  We can
call for help in this canyon and the echo will carry our voices to the
end of the canyon.  Someone's bound to hear us by then!"
        So he leans over the basket and screams out, "Helllloooooo!  Where
are we?"  (They hear the echo several times).
        Fifteen minutes later, they hear this echoing voice: "Helllloooooo!
You're lost!"
        The shouter comments, "That must have been a mathematician."
        Puzzled, his friend asks, "Why do you say that?"
        "For three reasons.  First, he took a long time to answer, second,
he was absolutely correct, and, third, his answer was absolutely useless."
We have a equal opportunity Calculus class -- it's fully integrated.
We laugh at the Indian philosopher, who to account for the support
of the earth, contrived the hypothesis of a huge elephant, and to support
the elephant, a huge tortoise.  If we will candidly confess the truth, we
know as little of the operation of the nerves, as he did of the manner in
which the earth is supported: and our hypothesis about animal spirits, or
about the tension and vibrations of the nerves, are as like to be true, as
his about the support of the earth.  His elephant was a hypothesis, and our
hypotheses are elephants.  Every theory in philosophy, which is built on
pure conjecture, is an elephant; and every theory that is supported partly
by fact, and partly by conjecture, is like Nebuchadnezzar's image, whose
feet were partly of iron, and partly of clay.
                -- Thomas Reid, "An Inquiry into the Human Mind", 1764
... we must be wary of granting too much power to natural selection
by viewing all basic capacities of our brain as direct adaptations.
I do not doubt that natural selection acted in building our oversized
brains -- and I am equally confident that our brains became large as
an adaptation for definite roles (probably a complex set of interacting
functions).  But these assumptions do not lead to the notion, often
uncritically embraced by strict Darwinians, that all major capacities
of the brain must arise as direct products of natural selection.
                -- S.J. Gould, "The Mismeasure of Man"
... we must counterpose the overwhelming judgment provided by consistent
observations and inferences by the thousands.  The earth is billions of
years old and its living creatures are linked by ties of evolutionary
descent.  Scientists stand accused of promoting dogma by so stating, but
do we brand people illiberal when they proclaim that the earth is neither
flat nor at the center of the universe?  Science *has* taught us some
things with confidence!  Evolution on an ancient earth is as well
established as our planet's shape and position.  Our continuing struggle
to understand how evolution happens (the "theory of evolution") does not
cast our documentation of its occurrence -- the "fact of evolution" --
into doubt.
                -- Stephen Jay Gould, "The Verdict on Creationism",
                   The Skeptical Inquirer, Vol. XII No. 2.
We who revel in nature's diversity and feel instructed by every animal tend to
brand Homo sapiens as the greatest catastrophe since the Cretaceous extinction.
                -- S.J. Gould
We've sent a man to the moon, and that's 29,000 miles away.  The center
of the Earth is only 4,000 miles away.  You could drive that in a week,
but for some reason nobody's ever done it.
                -- Andy Rooney
Weinberg, as a young grocery clerk, advised the grocery manager to get
rid of rutabagas which nobody ever bought.  He did so. "Well, kid, that
was a great idea," said the manager. Then he paused and asked the killer
question, "NOW what's the least popular vegetable?"

Law: Once you eliminate your #1 problem, #2 gets a promotion.
        -- Gerald Weinberg, "The Secrets of Consulting"
When a man sits with a pretty girl for an hour, it seems like a minute.
But let him sit on a hot stove for a minute -- and it's longer than any
hour.  That's relativity.
                -- Albert Einstein
When speculation has done its worst, two plus two still equals four.
                -- S. Johnson
WHERE CAN THE MATTER BE
        Oh, dear, where can the matter be
        When it's converted to energy?
        There is a slight loss of parity.
        Johnny's so long at the fair.
        While the engineer developed his thesis, the director leaned over to
his assistant and whispered, "Did you ever hear of why the sea is salt?"
        "Why the sea is salt?" whispered back the assistant.  "What do you
mean?"
        The director continued: "When I was a little kid, I heard the story of
`Why the sea is salt' many times, but I never thought it important until just
a moment ago.  It's something like this: Formerly the sea was fresh water and
salt was rare and expensive.  A miller received from a wizard a wonderful
machine that just ground salt out of itself all day long.  At first the miller
thought himself the most fortunate man in the world, but soon all the villages
had salt to last them for centuries and still the machine kept on grinding
more salt.  The miller had to move out of his house, he had to move off his
acres.  At last he determined that he would sink the machine in the sea and
be rid of it.  But the mill ground so fast that boat and miller and machine
were sunk together, and down below, the mill still went on grinding and that's
why the sea is salt."
        "I don't get you," said the assistant.
                -- Guy Endore, "Men of Iron"
        "Yes, let's consider," said Bruno, putting his thumb into his
mouth again, and sitting down upon a dead mouse.
        "What do you keep that mouse for?" I said.  "You should either
bury it or else throw it into the brook."
        "Why, it's to measure with!" cried Bruno.  "How ever would you
do a garden without one?  We make each bed three mouses and a half
long, and two mouses wide."
        I stopped him as he was dragging it off by the tail to show me
how it was used...
                -- Lewis Carroll, "Sylvie and Bruno"
        "Yo, Mike!"
        "Yeah, Gabe?"
        "We got a problem down on Earth.  In Utah."
        "I thought you fixed that last century!"
        "No, no, not that.  Someone's found a security problem in the physics
program.  They're getting energy out of nowhere."
        "Blessit!  Lemme look...  <tappity clickity tappity>  Hey, it's
there all right!  OK, just a sec...  <tappity clickity tap... save... compile>
There, that ought to patch it.  Dist it out, wouldja?"
                -- Cold Fusion, 1989
You can take all the impact that science considerations have on funding
decisions at NASA, put them in the navel of a flea, and have room left
over for a caraway seed and Tony Calio's heart.
                -- F. Allen
You should not use your fireplace, because scientists now believe that,
contrary to popular opinion, fireplaces actually remove heat from houses.
Really, that's what scientists believe.  In fact many scientists actually
use their fireplaces to cool their houses in the summer.  If you visit a
scientist's house on a sultry August day, you'll find a cheerful fire
roaring on the hearth and the scientist sitting nearby, remarking on how
cool he is and drinking heavily.
                -- Dave Barry, "Postpetroleum Guzzler"
1893 The ideal brain tonic
1900 Drink Coca-Cola -- delicious and refreshing -- 5 cents at all
        soda fountains
1905 Is the favorite drink for LADIES when thirsty -- weary -- despondent
1905 Refreshes the weary, brightens the intellect and clears the brain
1906 The drink of QUALITY
1907 Good to the last drop
1907 It satisfies the thirst and pleases the palate
1907 Refreshing as a summer breeze.  Delightful as a Dip in the Sea
1908 The Drink that Cheers but does not inebriate
1917 There's a delicious freshness to the taste of Coca-Cola
1919 It satisfies thirst
1919 The taste is the test
1922 Every glass holds the answer to thirst
1922 Thirst knows no season
1925 Enjoy the sociable drink
                -- Coca-Cola slogans
1925 With a drink so good, 'tis folly to be thirsty
1929 The high sign of refreshment
1929 The pause that refreshes
1930 It had to be good to get where it is
1932 The drink that makes a pause refreshing
1935 The pause that brings friends together
1937 STOP for a pause... GO refreshed
1938 The best friend thirst ever had
1939 Thirst stops here
1942 It's the real thing
1947 Have a Coke
1961 Zing! what a REFRESHING NEW FEELING
1963 Things go better with Coke
1969 Face Uncle Sam with a Coke in your hand
1979 Have a Coke and a smile
1982 Coke is it!
                -- Coca-Cola slogans
Anything is good if it's made of chocolate.
Cheese -- milk's leap toward immortality.
                -- Clifton Fadiman, "Any Number Can Play"
Consider the following axioms carefully:
        "Everything's better when it sits on a Ritz."
        and
        "Everything's better with Blue Bonnet on it."
What happens if one spreads Blue Bonnet margarine on a Ritz cracker?  The
thought is frightening.  Is this how God came into being?  Try not to
consider the fact that "Things go better with Coke".
Dear Mister Language Person: I am curious about the expression, "Part of
this complete breakfast".  The way it comes up is, my 5-year-old will be
watching TV cartoon shows in the morning, and they'll show a commercial for
a children's compressed breakfast compound such as "Froot Loops" or "Lucky
Charms", and they always show it sitting on a table next to some actual food
such as eggs, and the announcer always says: "Part of this complete
breakfast".  Don't that really mean, "Adjacent to this complete breakfast",
or "On the same table as this complete breakfast"?  And couldn't they make
essentially the same claim if, instead of Froot Loops, they put a can of
shaving cream there, or a dead bat?

Answer: Yes.
                -- Dave Barry, "Tips for Writer's"
Eat as much as you like -- just don't swallow it.
                -- Harry Secombe's diet
For those of you who have been unfortunate enough to never have tasted the
'Great Chieftain O' the Pudden Race' (i.e. haggis) here is an easy to follow
recipe which results in a dish remarkably similar to the above mentioned
protected species.
        Ingredients:
          1 Sheep's Pluck (heart, lungs, liver) and bag
          2 teacupsful toasted oatmeal
          1 teaspoonful salt
          8 oz. shredded suet
          2 small onions
        1/2 teaspoonful black pepper
    
        Scrape and clean bag in cold, then warm, water.  Soak in salt water
overnight.  Wash pluck, then boil for 2 hours with windpipe draining over
the side of pot.  Retain 1 pint of stock.  Cut off windpipe, remove surplus
gristle, chop or mince heart and lungs, and grate best part of liver (about
half only).  Parboil and chop onions, mix all together with oatmeal, suet,
salt, pepper and stock to moisten.  Pack the mixture into bag, allowing for
swelling.  Boil for three hours, pricking regularly all over.  If bag not
available, steam in greased basin covered by greaseproof paper and cloth for
four to five hours.
Fortune's Contribution of the Month to the Animal Rights Debate:

        I'll stay out of animals' way if they'll stay out of mine.
        "Hey you, get off my plate"
                -- Roger Midnight
Fortune's diet truths:
1:  Forget what the cookbooks say, plain yogurt tastes nothing like sour cream.
2:  Any recipe calling for soybeans tastes like mud.
3:  Carob is not an acceptable substitute for chocolate.  In fact, carob is not
    an acceptable substitute for anything, except, perhaps, brown shoe polish.
4:  There is no such thing as a "fun salad."  So let's stop pretending and see
    salads for what they are:  God's punishment for being fat.
5:  Fruit salad without maraschino cherries and marshmallows is about as
    appealing as tepid beer.
6:  A world lacking gravy is a tragic place!
7:  You should immediately pass up any recipes entitled "luscious and
    low-cal."  Also skip dishes featuring "lively liver."  They aren't and
    it isn't.
8:  Wearing a blindfold often makes many diet foods more palatable.
9:  Fresh fruit is not dessert.  CAKE is dessert!
10: Okra tastes slightly worse than its name implies.
11: A plain baked potato isn't worth the effort involved in chewing and
    swallowing.
Have a taco.
                -- P.S. Beagle
How many hors d'oeuvres you are allowed to take off a tray being carried by
a waiter at a nice party?
        Two, but there are ways around it, depending on the style of the hors
d'oeuvre.  If they're those little pastry things where you can't tell what's
inside, you take one, bite off about two-thirds of it, then say:  "This is
cheese!  I hate cheese!"  Then you put the rest of it back on the tray and
bite another one and go, "Darn it!  Another cheese!" and so on.
                -- Dave Barry, "The Stuff of Etiquette"
I never pray before meals -- my mom's a good cook.
IT MAKES ME MAD when I go to all the trouble of having Marta cook up about
a hundred drumsticks, then the guy at Marineland says, "You can't throw
that chicken to the dolphins. They eat fish."

Sure they eat fish if that's all you give them!  Man, wise up.
                -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988.
It's raisins that make Post Raisin Bran so raisiny ...
It's so beautifully arranged on the plate -- you know someone's fingers
have been all over it.
                -- Julia Child on nouvelle cuisine.
Just a few of the perfect excuses for having some strawberry shortcake.
Pick one.

         (1)        It's less calories than two pieces of strawberry shortcake.
         (2)        It's cheaper than going to France.
         (3)        It neutralizes the brownies I had yesterday.
         (4)        Life is short.
         (5)        It's somebody's birthday.  I don't want them to celebrate alone.
         (6)        It matches my eyes.
         (7)        Whoever said, "Let them eat cake." must have been talking to me.
         (8)        To punish myself for eating dessert yesterday.
         (9)        Compensation for all the time I spend in the shower not eating.
        (10)        Strawberry shortcake is evil.  I must help rid the world of it.
        (11)        I'm getting weak from eating all that healthy stuff.
        (12)        It's the second anniversary of the night I ate plain broccoli.
Last week's pet, this week's special.
"Life is like a buffet; it's not good but there's plenty of it."
Never drink coke in a moving elevator.  The elevator's motion coupled with
the chemicals in coke produce hallucinations.  People tend to change into
lizards and attack without warning, and large bats usually fly in the
window.  Additionally, you begin to believe that elevators have windows.
Now that you've read Fortune's diet truths, you'll be prepared the next
time some housewife or boutique-owner-turned-diet-expert appears on TV
to plug her latest book.  And, if you still feel a twinge of guilt for
eating coffee cake while listening to her exhortations, ask yourself
the following questions:

        (1) Do I dare trust a person who actually considers alfalfa sprouts a
            food?
        (2) Was the author's sole motive in writing this book to get rich
            exploiting the forlorn hopes of chubby people like me?
        (3) Would a longer life be worthwhile if it had to be lived as
            prescribed ... without French-fried onion rings, pizza with
            double cheese, or the occasional Mai-Tai?  (Remember, living
            right doesn't really make you live longer, it just *seems* like
            longer.)

That, and another piece of coffee cake, should do the trick.
Peanut Blossoms

4 cups sugar           16 tbsp. milk
4 cups brown sugar     4 tsp. vanilla
4 cups shortening      14 cups flour
8 eggs                 4 tsp. soda
4 cups peanut butter   4 tsp. salt

Shape dough into balls.  Roll in sugar and bake on ungreased cookie
sheet at 375 F. for 10-12 minutes.  Immediately top each cookie with a
Hershey's kiss or star pressing down firmly to crack cookie.  Makes a
heck of a lot.
Peter's hungry, time to eat lunch.
Remember, DESSERT is spelled with two `s's while DESERT is spelled with
one, because EVERYONE wants two desserts, but NO ONE wants two deserts.
                -- Miss Oglethorp, Gr. 5, PS. 59
RULES OF EATING -- THE BRONX DIETER'S CREED
        (1)  Never eat on an empty stomach.
        (2)  Never leave the table hungry.
        (3)  When traveling, never leave a country hungry.
        (4)  Enjoy your food.
        (5)  Enjoy your companion's food.
        (6)  Really taste your food.  It may take several portions to
             accomplish this, especially if subtly seasoned.
        (7)  Really feel your food.  Texture is important.  Compare,
             for example, the texture of a turnip to that of a
             brownie.  Which feels better against your cheeks?
        (8)  Never eat between snacks, unless it's a meal.
        (9)  Don't feel you must finish everything on your plate.  You
             can always eat it later.
        (10) Avoid any wine with a childproof cap.
        (11) Avoid blue food.
                -- Richard Smith, "The Bronx Diet"
Seeing is deceiving.  It's eating that's believing.
                -- James Thurber
The basic menu item, in fact the ONLY menu item, would be a food unit called
the "patty," consisting of -- this would be guaranteed in writing -- "100
percent animal matter of some kind." All patties would be heated up and then
cooled back down in electronic devices immediately before serving.  The
Breakfast Patty would be a patty on a bun with lettuce, tomato, onion, egg,
Ba-Ko-Bits, Cheez Whiz, a Special Sauce made by pouring ketchup out of a
bottle and a little slip of paper stating: "Inspected by Number 12."  The
Lunch or Dinner Patty would be any Breakfast Patties that didn't get sold in
the morning. The Seafood Lover's Patty would be any patties that were
starting to emit a serious aroma.  Patties that were too rank even to be
Seafood Lover's Patties would be compressed into wads and sold as "Nuggets."
                -- Dave Barry, "'Mister Mediocre' Restaurants"
The History of every major Galactic Civilization tends to pass through
three distinct and recognizable phases, those of Survival, Inquiry, and
Sophistication, otherwise known as the How, Why, and Where phases.  For
instance, the first phase is characterized by the question "How can we eat?"
the second by "Why do we eat?" and the third by "Where shall we have lunch?".
                -- Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
The Kosher Dill was invented in 1723 by Joe Kosher and Sam Dill.  It is
the single most popular pickle variety today, enjoyed throughout the free
world by man, woman and child alike.  An astounding 350 billion kosher
dills are eaten each year, averaging out to almost 1/4 pickle per person
per day.  New York Times food critic Mimi Sheraton says "The kosher dill
really changed my life.  I used to enjoy eating McDonald's hamburgers and
drinking Iron City Lite, and then I encountered the kosher dill pickle.
I realized that there was far more to haute cuisine then I'd ever imagined.
And now, just look at me."
The reason it's called "Grape Nuts" is that it contains "dextrose", which is
also sometimes called "grape sugar," and also because "Grape Nuts" is
catchier, in terms of marketing, than "A Cross Between Gerbil Food and
Gravel," which is what it tastes like.
                -- Dave Barry, "Tips for Writer's"
The way to a man's stomach is through his esophagus.
There's always free cheese in a mousetrap.
There's nothing like the face of a kid eating a Hershey bar.
This is Betty Frenel.  I don't know who to call but I can't reach my
Food-a-holics partner.  I'm at Vido's on my second pizza with sausage
and mushroom.  Jim, come and get me!
        ... This striving for excellence extends into people's personal
lives as well.  When '80s people buy something, they buy the best one, as
determined by (1) price and (2) lack of availability. Eighties people buy
imported dental floss.  They buy gourmet baking soda.  If an '80s couple
goes to a restaurant where they have made a reservation three weeks in
advance, and they are informed that their table is available, they stalk
out immediately, because they know it is not an excellent restaurant.  If
it were, it would have an enormous crowd of excellence-oriented people
like themselves waiting, their beepers going off like crickets in the
night.  An excellent restaurant wouldn't have a table ready immediately
for anybody below the rank of Liza Minnelli.
                -- Dave Barry, "In Search of Excellence"
        To lose weight, eat less; to gain weight, eat more; if you merely
wish to maintain, do whatever you were doing.
        The Bronx diet is a legitimate system of food therapy showing that
food SHOULD be used a crutch and which food could be the most effective in
promoting spiritual and emotional satisfaction.  For the first time, an
eater could instantly grasp the connection between relieving depression and
Mallomars, and understand why a lover's quarrel isn't so bad if there's a
pint of ice cream nearby.
                -- Richard Smith, "The Bronx Diet"
Tom's hungry, time to eat lunch.
Vegetables are what food eats.
Fruit are vegetables that fool you by tasting good.
Fish are fast moving vegetables.
Mushrooms are what grows on vegetables when food's done with them.
                -- Meat Eater's Credo, according to Jim Williams
What is important is food, money and opportunities for scoring off one's
enemies.  Give a man these three things and you won't hear much squawking
out of him.
                -- Brian O'Nolan, "The Best of Myles"
        "When you wake up in the morning, Pooh," said Piglet at last,
"what's the first thing you say to yourself?"
        "What's for breakfast?" said Pooh.  "What do you say, Piglet?"
        "I say, I wonder what's going to happen exciting today?" said Piglet.
        Pooh nodded thoughtfully.  "It's the same thing," he said.
When you're dining out and you suspect something's wrong, you're probably right.
Why do so many foods come packaged in plastic?  It's quite uncanny.
You know you have a small apartment when Rice Krispies echo.
                -- S. Rickly Christian
You should tip the waiter $10, minus $2 if he tells you his name, another $2
if he claims it will be His Pleasure to serve you and another $2 for each
"special" he describes involving confusing terms such as "shallots," and $4
if the menu contains the word "fixin's." In many restaurants, this means the
waiter will actually owe you money. If you are traveling with a child aged
six months to three years, you should leave an additional amount equal to
twice the bill to compensate for the fact that they will have to take the
banquette out and burn it because the cracks are wedged solid with gobbets
made of partially chewed former restaurant rolls saturated with baby spit.

In New York, tip the taxicab driver $40 if he does not mention his hemorrhoids.
                -- Dave Barry, "The Stuff of Etiquette"
A bunch of the boys were whooping it in the Malemute saloon;
The kid that handles the music box was hitting a jag-time tune;
Back of the bar, in a solo game, sat Dangerous Dan McGrew,
And watching his luck was his light-o'-love, the lady that's known as Lou.
                -- Robert W. Service
A Elbereth Gilthoniel,
silivren penna m'iriel
o menel aglar elenath!
Na chaered palan-d'iriel
o galadhremmin ennorath,
Fanuilos, le linnathon
nef aear, s'i  nef aearon!
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
A fitter fits;                                Though sinners sin
A cutter cuts;                                And thinners thin
And an aircraft spotter spots;                And paper-blotters blot
A baby-sitter                                I've never yet
Baby-sits --                                Had letters let
But an otter never ots.                        Or seen an otter ot.

A batter bats
(Or scatters scats);
A potting shed's for potting;
But no one's found
A bounder bound
Or caught an otter otting.
                -- Ralph Lewin
A is for awk, which runs like a snail, and
B is for biff, which reads all your mail.
C is for cc, as hackers recall, while
D is for dd, the command that does all.
E is for emacs, which rebinds your keys, and
F is for fsck, which rebuilds your trees.
G is for grep, a clever detective, while
H is for halt, which may seem defective.
I is for indent, which rarely amuses, and
J is for join, which nobody uses.
K is for kill, which makes you the boss, while
L is for lex, which is missing from DOS.
M is for more, from which less was begot, and
N is for nice, which it really is not.
O is for od, which prints out things nice, while
P is for passwd, which reads in strings twice.
Q is for quota, a Berkeley-type fable, and
R is for ranlib, for sorting ar table.
S is for spell, which attempts to belittle, while
T is for true, which does very little.
U is for uniq, which is used after sort, and
V is for vi, which is hard to abort.
W is for whoami, which tells you your name, while
X is, well, X, of dubious fame.
Y is for yes, which makes an impression, and
Z is for zcat, which handles compression.
                -- THE ABC'S OF UNIX
A lady with one of her ears applied
To an open keyhole heard, inside,
Two female gossips in converse free --
The subject engaging them was she.
"I think", said one, "and my husband thinks
That she's a prying, inquisitive minx!"
As soon as no more of it she could hear
The lady, indignant, removed her ear.
"I will not stay," she said with a pout,
"To hear my character lied about!"
                -- Gopete Sherany
A little word of doubtful number,
A foe to rest and peaceful slumber.
If you add an "s" to this,
Great is the metamorphosis.
Plural is plural now no more,
And sweet what bitter was before.
What am I?
A pig is a jolly companion,
Boar, sow, barrow, or gilt --
A pig is a pal, who'll boost your morale,
Though mountains may topple and tilt.
When they've blackballed, bamboozled, and burned you,
When they've turned on you, Tory and Whig,
Though you may be thrown over by Tabby and Rover,
You'll never go wrong with a pig, a pig,
You'll never go wrong with a pig!
                -- Thomas Pynchon, "Gravity's Rainbow"
A salamander scurries into flame to be destroyed.
Imaginary creatures are trapped in birth on celluloid.
                -- Genesis, "The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway"

I don't know what it's about.  I'm just the drummer.  Ask Peter.
                -- Phil Collins in 1975, when asked about the message behind
                   the previous year's Genesis release, "The Lamb Lies Down
                   on Broadway".
A single flow'r he sent me, since we met.
All tenderly his messenger he chose;
Deep-hearted, pure, with scented dew still wet--
One perfect rose.

I knew the language of the floweret;
"My fragile leaves," it said, "his heart enclose."
Love long has taken for his amulet
One perfect rose.

Why is it no one ever sent me yet
One perfect limousine, do you suppose?
Ah no, it's always just my luck to get
One perfect rose.
                -- Dorothy Parker, "One Perfect Rose"
A truth that's told with bad intent
Beats all the lies you can invent.
                -- William Blake
A-Z affectionately,
1 to 10 alphabetically,
from here to eternity without in betweens,
still looking for a custom fit in an off-the-rack world,
sales talk from sales assistants
        when all i want to do is lower your resistance,
no rhythm in cymbals no tempo in drums,
love's on arrival,
she comes when she comes,
right on the target but wide of the mark...
Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase!)
Awoke one night from a deep dream of peace,
And saw, within the moonlight in his room,
Making it rich, and like a lily in bloom,
An angel writing in a book of gold.
Exceeding peace had made Ben Adhem bold,
And to the presence in the room he said,
"What writest thou?"  The vision raised its head,
And with a look made of all sweet accord,
Answered, "The names of those who love the Lord."
"And is mine one?" said Abou. "Nay not so,"
Replied the angel.  Abou spoke more low,
But cheerly still; and said, "I pray thee then,
Write me as one that loves his fellow-men."
The angel wrote, and vanished.  The next night
It came again with a great wakening light,
And showed the names whom love of God had blessed,
And lo!  Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.
                -- James Henry Leigh Hunt, "Abou Ben Adhem"
After a while you learn the subtle difference
Between holding a hand and chaining a soul,
And you learn that love doesn't mean security,
And you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts
And presents aren't promises
And you begin to accept your defeats
With your head up and your eyes open,
With the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child,
And you learn to build all your roads
On today because tomorrow's ground
Is too uncertain.  And futures have
A way of falling down in midflight,
After a while you learn that even sunshine burns if you get too much.
So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting
For someone to bring you flowers.
And you learn that you really can endure...
That you really are strong,
And you really do have worth
And you learn and learn
With every goodbye you learn.
                -- Veronic Shoffstall, "Comes the Dawn"
Ah, but a man's grasp should exceed his reach,
Or what's a heaven for ?
                -- Robert Browning, "Andrea del Sarto"
Ah, but the choice of dreams to live,
there's the rub.

For all dreams are not equal,
some exit to nightmare
most end with the dreamer

But at least one must be lived ... and died.
All I need to have a good time,
Is a reefer, a woman and a bottle of wine.
With those three things I don't need no sunshine,
A reefer, a woman and a bottle of wine.

All I want is to never grow old,
I want to wash in a bathtub of gold.
I want 97 kilos already rolled,
I want to wash in a bathtub of gold.

I want to light my cigars with 10 dollar bills,
I like to have a cattle ranch in Beverly Hills.
I want a bottle of Red Eye that's always filled,
I like to have a cattle ranch in Beverly Hills.
                -- Country Joe and the Fish, "Zachariah"
        All that you touch,                And all you create,
        All that you see,                And all you destroy,
        All that you taste,                All that you do,
        All you feel,                        And all you say,
        And all that you love,                All that you eat,
        And all that you hate,                And everyone you meet,
        All you distrust,                All that you slight,
        All you save,                        And everyone you fight,
        And all that you give,                And all that is now,
        And all that you deal,                And all that is gone,
        All that you buy,                And all that's to come,
        Beg, borrow or steal,                And everything under the sun is
                                                in tune,
                                        But the sun is eclipsed
                                        By the moon.

There is no dark side of the moon... really... matter of fact it's all dark.
                -- Pink Floyd, "Dark Side of the Moon"
All the lines have been written                There's been Sandburg,
It's sad but it's true                        Keats, Poe and McKuen
With all the words gone,                They all had their day
What's a young poet to do?                And knew what they're doin'

But of all the words written                The bird is a strange one,
And all the lines read,                        So small and so tender
There's one I like most,                Its breed still unknown,
And by a bird it was said!                Not to mention its gender.

It reminds me of days of                So what is this line
Both gloom and of light.                Whose author's unknown
It still lifts my spirits                And still makes me giggle
And starts the day right.                Even now that I'm grown?

I've read all the greats
Both starving and fat,
But none was as great as
"I tot I taw a puddy tat."
                -- Etta Stallings, "An Ode To Childhood"
All the world's a VAX,
And all the coders merely butchers;
They have their exits and their entrails;
And one int in his time plays many widths,
His sizeof being _N bytes.  At first the infant,
Mewling and puking in the Regent's arms.
And then the whining schoolboy, with his Sun,
And shining morning face, creeping like slug
Unwillingly to school.
                -- A Very Annoyed PDP-11
An Hacker there was, one of the finest sort
Who controlled the system; graphics was his sport.
A manly man, to be a wizard able;
Many a protected file he had sitting on his table.
His console, when he typed, a man might hear
Clicking and feeping wind as clear,
Aye, and as loud as does the machine room bell
Where my lord Hacker was Prior of the cell.
The Rule of good St Savage or St Doeppnor
As old and strict he tended to ignore;
He let go by the things of yesterday
And took the modern world's more spacious way.
He did not rate that text as a plucked hen
Which says that Hackers are not holy men.
And that a hacker underworked is a mere
Fish out of water, flapping on the pier.
That is to say, a hacker out of his cloister.
That was a text he held not worth an oyster.
And I agreed and said his views were sound;
Was he to study till his head wend round
Poring over books in the cloisters?  Must he toil
As Andy bade and till the very soil?
Was he to leave the world upon the shelf?
Let Andy have his labor to himself!
                -- Chaucer
                [well, almost.  Ed.]
And all that the Lorax left here in this mess
was a small pile of rocks with the one word, "unless."
Whatever THAT meant, well, I just couldn't guess.
That was long, long ago, and each day since that day,
I've worried and worried and worried away.
Through the years as my buildings have fallen apart,
I've worried about it with all of my heart.

"BUT," says the Oncler, "now that you're here,
the word of the Lorax seems perfectly clear!
UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better - it's not.
So... CATCH!" cries the Oncler.  He lets something fall.
"It's a truffula seed.  It's the last one of all!

"You're in charge of the last of the truffula seeds.
And truffula trees are what everyone needs.
Plant a new truffula -- treat it with care.
Give it clean water and feed it fresh air.
Grow a forest -- protect it from axes that hack.
Then the Lorax and all of his friends may come back!"
And did those feet, in ancient times,
Walk upon England's mountains green?
And was the Holy Lamb of God
In England's pleasant pastures seen?
And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon these crowded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark satanic mills?

Bring me my bow of burning gold!
Bring me my arrows of desire!
Bring me my spears!  O clouds unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!
I shall not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword rest in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England's green and pleasant land.
                -- William Blake, "Jerusalem"
And now your toner's toney,                Disk blocks aplenty
And your paper near pure white,                Await your laser drawn lines,
The smudges on your soul are gone        Your intricate fonts,
And your output's clean as light..        Your pictures and signs.

We've labored with your father,                Your amputative absence
The venerable XGP,                        Has made the Ten dumb,
But his slow artistic hand,                Without you, Dover,
Lacks your clean velocity.                We're system untounged-

Theses and papers                         DRAW Plots and TEXage
And code in a queue                        Have been biding their time,
Dover, oh Dover,                        With LISP code and programs,
We've been waiting for you.                And this crufty rhyme.

Dover, oh Dover,                Dover, oh Dover, arisen from dead.
We welcome you back,                Dover, oh Dover, awoken from bed.
Though still you may jam,        Dover, oh Dover, welcome back to the Lab.
You're on the right track.        Dover, oh Dover, we've missed your clean
                                        hand...
...and report cards I was always afraid to show
Mama'd come to school
and as I'd sit there softly cryin'
Teacher'd say he's just not tryin'
Got a good head if he'd apply it
but you know yourself
it's always somewhere else
I'd build me a castle
with dragons and kings
and I'd ride off with them
As I stood by my window
and looked out on those
Brooklyn roads
                -- Neil Diamond, "Brooklyn Roads"
And... What in the world ever became of Sweet Jane?
        She's lost her sparkle, you see she isn't the same.
        Livin' on reds, vitamin C, and cocaine
        All a friend can say is "Ain't it a shame?"
                -- The Grateful Dead
As I was going up Punch Card Hill,
        Feeling worse and worser,
There I met a C.R.T.
        And it drop't me a cursor.

C.R.T., C.R.T.,
        Phosphors light on you!
If I had fifty hours a day
        I'd spend them all at you.
                -- Uncle Colonel's Cursory Rhymes
As I was walking down the street one dark and dreary day,
I came upon a billboard and much to my dismay,
The words were torn and tattered,
From the storm the night before,
The wind and rain had done its work and this is how it goes,

Smoke Coca-Cola cigarettes, chew Wrigleys Spearmint beer,
Ken-L-Ration dog food makes your complexion clear,
Simonize your baby in a Hershey candy bar,
And Texaco's a beauty cream that's used by every star.

Take your next vacation in a brand new Frigedaire,
Learn to play the piano in your winter underwear,
Doctors say that babies should smoke until they're three,
And people over sixty-five should bathe in Lipton tea.
As me an' me marrer was readin' a tyape,
The tyape gave a shriek mark an' tried tae escyape;
It skipped ower the gyate tae the end of the field,
An' jigged oot the room wi' a spool an' a reel!
Follow the leader, Johnny me laddie,
Follow it through, me canny lad O;
Follow the transport, Johnny me laddie,
Away, lad, lie away, canny lad O!
                -- S. Kelly-Bootle, "The Devil's DP Dictionary"
Because I do,
Because I do not hope,
Because I do not hope to survive
Injustice from the Palace, death from the air,
Because I do, only do,
I continue...
                -- T.S. Pynchon
Between the idea
And the reality
Between the motion
And the act
Falls the Shadow
                -- T.S. Eliot, "The Hollow Man"

        [Quoted in "VMS Internals and Data Structures", V4.4, when
         referring to system service dispatching.]
Black shiny mollies and bright colored guppies,
Shy little angels as gentle as puppies,
Swimming and diving with scarcely a swish,
They were just some of my tropical fish.

Then I got mantas that sting in the water,
Deadly piranhas that itch for a slaughter,
Savage male betas that bite with a squish,
Now I have many less tropical fish.

        If you think that
        Fish are peaceful
        That's an empty wish.
        Just dump them together
        And leave them alone,
        And soon you will have -- no fish.
                -- To My Favorite Things
Breathe deep the gathering gloom.
Watch lights fade from every room.
Bed-sitter people look back and lament;
another day's useless energies spent.

Impassioned lovers wrestle as one.
Lonely man cries for love and has none.
New mother picks up and suckles her son.
Senior citizens wish they were young.

Cold-hearted orb that rules the night;
Removes the colors from our sight.
Red is grey and yellow white.
But we decide which is real, and which is an illusion."
                -- The Moody Blues, "Days of Future Passed"
But I was there and I saw what you did,
I saw it with my own two eyes.
So you can wipe off that grin;
I know where you've been--
It's all been a pack of lies!
Buzz off, Banana Nose; Relieve mine eyes
Of hateful soreness, purge mine ears of corn;
Less dear than army ants in apple pies
Art thou, old prune-face, with thy chestnuts worn,
Dropt from thy peeling lips like lousy fruit;
Like honeybees upon the perfum'd rose
They suck, and like the double-breasted suit
Are out of date; therefore, Banana Nose,
Go fly a kite, thy welcome's overstayed;
And stem the produce of thy waspish wits:
Thy logick, like thy locks, is disarrayed;
Thy cheer, like thy complexion, is the pits.
Be off, I say; go bug somebody new,
Scram, beat it, get thee hence, and nuts to you.
By the yard, life is hard.
By the inch, it's a cinch.
Calm down, it's only ones and zeroes,
Calm down, it's only bits and bytes,
Calm down, and speak to me in English,
Please realize that I'm not one of your computerites.
Cecil, you're my final hope
Of finding out the true Straight Dope
For I have been reading of Schrodinger's cat
But none of my cats are at all like that.
This unusual animal (so it is said)
Is simultaneously alive and dead!
What I don't understand is just why he
Can't be one or the other, unquestionably.
My future now hangs in between eigenstates.
In one I'm enlightened, in the other I ain't.
If *you* understand, Cecil, then show me the way
And rescue my psyche from quantum decay.
But if this queer thing has perplexed even you,
Then I will *___and* I won't see you in Schrodinger's zoo.
                -- Randy F., Chicago, "The Straight Dope, a compendium
                   of human knowledge" by Cecil Adams
Certainly there are things in life that money can't buy,
But it's very funny -- did you ever try buying them without money?
                -- Ogden Nash
Children aren't happy without something to ignore,
And that's what parents were created for.
                -- Ogden Nash
Christmas time is here, by Golly;        Kill the turkeys, ducks and chickens;
Disapproval would be folly;                Mix the punch, drag out the Dickens;
Deck the halls with hunks of holly;        Even though the prospect sickens,
Fill the cup and don't say when...        Brother, here we go again.

On Christmas day, you can't get sore;        Relations sparing no expense'll,
Your fellow man you must adore;                Send some useless old utensil,
There's time to rob him all the more,        Or a matching pen and pencil,
The other three hundred and sixty-four!        Just the thing I need... how nice.

It doesn't matter how sincere                Hark The Herald-Tribune sings,
It is, nor how heartfelt the spirit;        Advertising wondrous things.
Sentiment will not endear it;                God Rest Ye Merry Merchants,
What's important is... the price.        May you make the Yuletide pay.
                                        Angels We Have Heard On High,
Let the raucous sleighbells jingle;        Tell us to go out and buy.
Hail our dear old friend, Kris Kringle,        Sooooo...
Driving his reindeer across the sky,
Don't stand underneath when they fly by!
                -- Tom Lehrer
Come live with me and be my love,
And we will some new pleasures prove
Of golden sands and crystal brooks
With silken lines, and silver hooks.
There's nothing that I wouldn't do
If you would be my POSSLQ.

You live with me, and I with you,
And you will be my POSSLQ.
I'll be your friend and so much more;
That's what a POSSLQ is for.

And everything we will confess;
Yes, even to the IRS.
Some day on what we both may earn,
Perhaps we'll file a joint return.
You'll share my pad, my taxes, joint;
You'll share my life - up to a point!
And that you'll be so glad to do,
Because you'll be my POSSLQ.
Come, you spirits
That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here,
And fill me, from the crown to the toe, top-full
Of direst cruelty! make thick my blood,
Stop up the access and passage to remorse
That no compunctious visiting of nature
Shake my fell purpose, not keep peace between
The effect and it! Come to my woman's breasts,
And take my milk for gall, you murdering ministers,
Wherever in your sightless substances
You wait on nature's mischief! Come, thick night,
And pall the in the dunnest smoke of hell,
That my keen knife see not the wound it makes,
Nor heaven peep through the blanket of the dark,
To cry `Hold, hold!'
                -- Lady MacBeth
        Deck us all with Boston Charlie,
        Walla Walla, Wash., an' Kalamazoo!
        Nora's freezin' on the trolley,
        Swaller dollar cauliflower, alleygaroo!

        Don't we know archaic barrel,
        Lullaby Lilla Boy, Louisville Lou.
        Trolley Molly don't love Harold,
        Boola boola Pensacoola hullabaloo!
                -- Pogo, "Deck Us All With Boston Charlie" [Walt Kelly]
Didja' ever have to make up your mind,
Pick up on one and leave the other behind,
It's not often easy, and it's not often kind,
Didja' ever have to make up your mind?
                -- Lovin' Spoonful
Disillusioned words like bullets bark,
As human gods aim for their mark,
Make everything from toy guns that spark
To flesh-colored christs that glow in the dark.
It's easy to see without looking too far
That not much is really sacred.
                -- Bob Dylan
Don't be concerned, it will not harm you,
It's only me pursuing something I'm not sure of,
Across my dreams, with neptive wonder,
I chase the bright elusive butterfly of love.
Don't let nobody tell you what you cannot do;
don't let nobody tell you what's impossible for you;
don't let nobody tell you what you got to do,
or you'll never know ... what's on the other side of the rainbow...
remember, if you don't follow your dreams,
you'll never know what's on the other side of the rainbow...
                -- melba moore, "the other side of the rainbow"
Eleanor Rigby
        Sits at the keyboard
        And waits for a line on the screen
Lives in a dream
Waits for a signal
        Finding some code
        That will make the machine do some more.
What is it for?

All the lonely users, where do they all come from?
All the lonely users, why does it take so long?

Hacker MacKensie
Writing the code for a program that no one will run
It's nearly done
Look at him working, fixing the bugs in the night when there's
        nobody there.
What does he care?

All the lonely users, where do they all come from?
All the lonely users, why does it take so long?
Ah, look at all the lonely users.
Ah, look at all the lonely users.
Endless the world's turn, endless the sun's spinning
Endless the quest;
I turn again, back to my own beginning,
And here, find rest.
Even in the moment of our earliest kiss,
When sighed the straitened bud into the flower,
Sat the dry seed of most unwelcome this;
And that I knew, though not the day and hour.
Too season-wise am I, being country-bred,
To tilt at autumn or defy the frost:
Snuffing the chill even as my fathers did,
I say with them, "What's out tonight is lost."
I only hoped, with the mild hope of all
Who watch the leaf take shape upon the tree,
A fairer summer and a later fall
Than in these parts a man is apt to see,
And sunny clusters ripened for the wine:
I tell you this across the blackened vine.
                -- Edna St. Vincent Millay, "Even in the Moment of
                   Our Earliest Kiss", 1931
Ever Onward!  Ever Onward!
That's the sprit that has brought us fame.
We're big but bigger we will be,
We can't fail for all can see, that to serve humanity
Has been our aim.
Our products now are known in every zone.
Our reputation sparkles like a gem.
We've fought our way thru
And new fields we're sure to conquer, too
For the Ever Onward IBM!
                -- Ever Onward, from the 1940 IBM Songbook
Ever since I was a young boy,
I've hacked the ARPA net,
From Berkeley down to Rutgers,                He's on my favorite terminal,
Any access I could get,                        He cats C right into foo,
But ain't seen nothing like him,        His disciples lead him in,
On any campus yet,                        And he just breaks the root,
That deaf, dumb, and blind kid,                Always has full SYS-PRIV's,
Sure sends a mean packet.                Never uses lint,
                                        That deaf, dumb, and blind kid,
                                        Sure sends a mean packet.
He's a UNIX wizard,
There has to be a twist.
The UNIX wizard's got                        Ain't got no distractions,
Unlimited space on disk.                Can't hear no whistles or bells,
How do you think he does it?                Can't see no message flashing,
I don't know.                                Types by sense of smell,
What makes him so good?                        Those crazy little programs,
                                        The proper bit flags set,
                                        That deaf, dumb, and blind kid,
                                        Sure sends a mean packet.
                -- UNIX Wizard
Every love's the love before
In a duller dress.
                -- Dorothy Parker, "Summary"
Everybody knows that the dice are loaded.  Everybody rolls with their
fingers crossed.  Everybody knows the war is over.  Everybody knows the
good guys lost.  Everybody knows the fight was fixed: the poor stay
poor, the rich get rich.  That's how it goes.  Everybody knows.

Everybody knows that the boat is leaking.  Everybody knows the captain
lied.  Everybody got this broken feeling like their father or their dog
just died.

Everybody talking to their pockets.  Everybody wants a box of chocolates
and long stem rose.  Everybody knows.

Everybody knows that you love me, baby.  Everybody knows that you really
do.  Everybody knows that you've been faithful, give or take a night or
two.  Everybody knows you've been discreet, but there were so many people
you just had to meet without your clothes.  And everybody knows.

And everybody knows it's now or never.  Everybody knows that it's me or you.
And everybody knows that you live forever when you've done a line or two.
Everybody knows the deal is rotten: Old Black Joe's still pickin' cotton
for you ribbons and bows.  And everybody knows.
        -- Leonard Cohen, "Everybody Knows"
Everything's great in this good old world;
(This is the stuff they can always use.)
God's in his heaven, the hill's dew-pearled;
(This will provide for baby's shoes.)
Hunger and War do not mean a thing;
Everything's rosy where'er we roam;
Hark, how the little birds gaily sing!
(This is what fetches the bacon home.)
                -- Dorothy Parker, "The Far Sighted Muse"
F:        When into a room I plunge, I
        Sometimes find some VIOLET FUNGI.
        Then I linger, darkly brooding
        On the poison they're exuding.
                -- The Roguelet's ABC
Fifteen men on a dead man's chest,
Yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum!
Drink and the devil had done for the rest,
Yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum!
                -- Stevenson, "Treasure Island"
"For a couple o' pins," says Troll, and grins,
"I'll eat thee too, and gnaw thy shins.
A bit o' fresh meat will go down sweet!
I'll try my teeth on thee now.
        Hee now!  See now!
I'm tired o' gnawing old bones and skins;
I've a mind to dine on thee now."

But just as he thought his dinner was caught,
He found his hands had hold of naught.
Before he could mind, Tom slipped behing
And gave him the boot to larn him.
        Warn him!  Darn him!
A bump o' the boot on the seat, Tom thoguht,
Would be the way to larn him.

But harder than stone is the flesh and bone
Of a troll that sits in the hills alone.
As well set your boot to the mountain's root,
For the seat of a troll don't feel it.
        Peel it!  Heal it!
Old Troll laughed, when he heard Tom groan,
And he knew his toes could feel it.

Tom's leg is game, since home he came,
And his bootless foot is lasting lame;
But Troll don't care, and he's still there
With the bone he boned from its owner.
        Doner!  Boner!
Troll's old seat is still the same,
And the bone he boned from its owner!
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
For knighthood is not in the feats of war,
As for to fight in quarrel right or wrong,
But in a cause which truth cannot defer:
He ought himself for to make sure and strong,
Just to keep mixt with mercy among:
And no quarrel a knight ought to take
But for a truth, or for the common's sake.
                -- Stephen Hawes
"Force is but might," the teacher said--
"That definition's just."
The boy said naught but thought instead,
Remembering his pounded head:
"Force is not might but must!"
Friends, Romans, Hipsters,
Let me clue you in;
I come to put down Caesar, not to groove him.
The square kicks some cats are on stay with them;
The hip bits, like, go down under;
so let it lay with Caesar.  The cool Brutus
Gave you the message: Caesar had big eyes;
If that's the sound, someone's copping a plea,
And, like, old Caesar really set them straight.
Here, copacetic with Brutus and the studs, --
for Brutus is a real cool cat;
So are they all, all cool cats, --
Come I to make this gig at Caesar's laying down.
Gibson's Springtime Song (to the tune of "Deck the Halls"):

'Tis the season to chase mousies (Fa la la la la, la la la la)
Snatch them from their little housies (...)
First we chase them 'round the field (...)
Then we have them for a meal (...)

Toss them here and catch them there (...)
See them flying through the air (...)
Watch them fly and hear them squeal (...)
Falling mice have great appeal (...)

See the hunter stretched before us (...)
He's chased the mice in field and forest (...)
Watch him clean his long white whiskers (...)
Of the blood of little critters (...)
Gil-galad was an Elven-king.
Of him the harpers sadly sing:
the last whose realm was fair and free
between the Mountains and the Sea.

His sword was long, his lance was keen,
his shining helm afar was seen;
the countless stars of heaven's field
were mirrored in his silver shield.

But long ago he rode away,
and where he dwelleth none can say;
for into darkness fell his star
in Mordor where the shadows are.
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
Give me your students, your secretaries,
Your huddled writers yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your Selectric III's.
Give these, the homeless, typist-tossed to me.
I lift my disk beside the processor.
                -- Inscription on a Word Processor
God rest ye CS students now,                The bearings on the drum are gone,
Let nothing you dismay.                        The disk is wobbling, too.
The VAX is down and won't be up,        We've found a bug in Lisp, and Algol
Until the first of May.                        Can't tell false from true.
The program that was due this morn,        And now we find that we can't get
Won't be postponed, they say.                At Berkeley's 4.2.
(chorus)                                (chorus)

We've just received a call from DEC,        And now some cheery news for you,
They'll send without delay                The network's also dead,
A monitor called RSuX                        We'll have to print your files on
It takes nine hundred K.                The line printer instead.
The staff committed suicide,                The turnaround time's nineteen weeks.
We'll bury them today.                        And only cards are read.
(chorus)                                (chorus)

And now we'd like to say to you                CHORUS:        Oh, tidings of comfort and joy,
Before we go away,                                Comfort and joy,
We hope the news we've brought to you                Oh, tidings of comfort and joy.
Won't ruin your whole day.
You've got another program due, tomorrow, by the way.
(chorus)
                -- to God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Gold coast slave ship bound for cotton fields
Sold in a market down in New Orleans
Scarred old slaver knows he's doing alright
Hear him whip the women, just around midnight

Ah, brown sugar how come you taste so good?
Ah, brown sugar just like a young girl should

Drums beating cold English blood runs hot
Lady of the house wonderin' where it's gonna stop
House boy knows that he's doing alright
You should a heard him just around midnight.
...
I bet your mama was tent show queen
And all her girlfriends were sweet sixteen
I'm no school boy but I know what I like
You should have heard me just around midnight.
                -- Rolling Stones, "Brown Sugar"
Got a wife and kids in Baltimore Jack,
I went out for a ride and never came back.
Like a river that don't know where it's flowing,
I took a wrong turn and I just kept going.

        Everybody's got a hungry heart.
        Everybody's got a hungry heart.
        Lay down your money and you play your part,
        Everybody's got a hungry heart.

I met her in a Kingstown bar,
We fell in love, I knew it had to end.
We took what we had and we ripped it apart,
Now here I am down in Kingstown again.

Everybody needs a place to rest,
Everybody wants to have a home.
Don't make no difference what nobody says,
Ain't nobody likes to be alone.
                -- Bruce Springsteen, "Hungry Heart"
H:        If a 'GOBLIN (HOB) waylays you,
        Slice him up before he slays you.
        Nothing makes you look a slob
        Like running from a HOB'LIN (GOB).
                -- The Roguelet's ABC
        Hack placidly amidst the noisy printers and remember what prizes there
may be in Science.  As fast as possible get a good terminal on a good system.
Enter your data clearly but always encrypt your results.  And listen to others,
even the dull and ignorant, for they may be your customers.  Avoid loud and
aggressive persons, for they are sales reps.
        If you compare your outputs with those of others, you may be surprised,
for always there will be greater and lesser numbers than you have crunched.
Keep others interested in your career, and try not to fumble; it can be a real
hassle and could change your fortunes in time.
        Exercise system control in your experiments, for the world is full of
bugs.  But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive
for linearity and everywhere papers are full of approximations.  Strive for
proportionality.  Especially, do not faint when it occurs.  Neither be cyclical
about results; for in the face of all data analysis it is sure to be noticed.
        Take with a grain of salt the anomalous data points.  Gracefully pass
them on to the youth at the next desk.  Nurture some mutual funds to shield
you in times of sudden layoffs.  But do not distress yourself with imaginings
-- the real bugs are enough to screw you badly.  Murphy's Law runs the
Universe -- and whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt <Curl>B*n dS = 0.
        Therefore, grab for a piece of the pie, with whatever proposals you
can conceive of to try.  With all the crashed disks, skewed data, and broken
line printers, you can still have a beautiful secretary.  Be linear.  Strive
to stay employed.
                -- Technolorata, "Analog"
"Had he and I but met
By some old ancient inn,                But ranged as infantry,
We should have sat us down to wet        And staring face to face,
Right many a nipperkin!                        I shot at him as he at me,
                                        And killed him in his place.
I shot him dead because --
Because he was my foe,                        He thought he'd 'list, perhaps,
Just so: my foe of course he was;        Off-hand-like -- just as I --
That's clear enough; although                Was out of work -- had sold his traps
                                        No other reason why.
Yes; quaint and curious war is!
You shoot a fellow down
You'd treat, if met where any bar is
Or help to half-a-crown."
                -- Thomas Hardy
                Hard Copies and Chmod

And everyone thinks computers are impersonal
cold diskdrives hardware monitors
user-hostile software

of course they're only bits and bytes
and characters and strings
and files

just some old textfiles from my old boyfriend
telling me he loves me and
he'll take care of me

simply a discarded printout of a friend's directory
deep intimate secrets and
how he doesn't trust me

couldn't hurt me more if they were scented in lavender or mould
on personal stationery
                -- terri@csd4.milw.wisc.edu
Have you ever felt like a wounded cow
halfway between an oven and a pasture?
walking in a trance toward a pregnant
        seventeen-year-old housewife's
        two-day-old cookbook?
                -- Richard Brautigan
Have you seen how Sonny's burning,
Like some bright erotic star,
He lights up the proceedings,
And raises the temperature.
                -- The Birthday Party, "Sonny's Burning"
Have you seen the old man in the closed down market,
Kicking up the papers in his worn out shoes?
In his eyes you see no pride, hands hang loosely at his side
Yesterdays papers, telling yesterdays news.

How can you tell me you're lonely,
And say for you the sun don't shine?
Let me take you by the hand
Lead you through the streets of London
I'll show you something to make you change your mind...

Have you seen the old man outside the sea-man's mission
Memories fading like the metal ribbons that he wears.
In our winter city the rain cries a little pity
For one more forgotten hero and a world that doesn't care...
Have you seen the well-to-do, up and down Park Avenue?
On that famous thoroughfare, with their noses in the air,
High hats and Arrow collars, white spats and lots of dollars,
Spending every dime, for a wonderful time...
If you're blue and you don't know where to go to,
Why don't you go where fashion sits,
...
Dressed up like a million dollar trooper,
Trying hard to look like Gary Cooper, (super dooper)
Come, let's mix where Rockefeller's walk with sticks,
Or umberellas, in their mitts,
Puttin' on the Ritz.
...
If you're blue and you don't know where to go to,
Why don't you go where fashion sits,
Puttin' on the Ritz.
Puttin' on the Ritz.
Puttin' on the Ritz.
Puttin' on the Ritz.
He's been like a father to me,
He's the only DJ you can get after three,
I'm an all-night musician in a rock and roll band,
And why he don't like me I don't understand.
                -- The Byrds
Her locks an ancient lady gave
Her loving husband's life to save;
And men -- they honored so the dame --
Upon some stars bestowed her name.

But to our modern married fair,
Who'd give their lords to save their hair,
No stellar recognition's given.
There are not stars enough in heaven.
Here I am again right where I know I shouldn't be
I've been caught inside this trap too many times
I must've walked these steps and said these words a
        thousand times before
It seems like I know everybody's lines.
                -- David Bromberg, "How Late'll You Play 'Til?"
Hey! Come merry dol! derry dol!  My darling!
Light goes the weather-wind and the feathered starling.

Down along under Hill, shining in the sunlight,
Waiting on the doorstep for the cold starlight,
There my pretty lady is, River-woman's daughter,
Slender as the willow-wand, clearer than the water.

Old Tom Bombadil water-lilies bringing
Comes hopping home again.  Can you hear him singing?
Hey!  Come merry dol! derry dol! and merry-o
Goldberry, Goldberry, merry yellow berry-o!

Poor old Willow-man, you tuck your roots away!
Tom's in a hurry now.  Evening will follow day.
Tom's going home again water-lilies bringing.
Hey! come derry dol!  Can you hear me singing?
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
Hey, diddle, diddle the overflow pdl
To get a little more stack;
If that's not enough then you lose it all
And have to pop all the way back.
Hier liegt ein Mann ganz obnegleich;
Im Leibe dick, an Suden reich.
Wir haben ihn in das Grab gesteckt,        Here lies a man with sundry flaws
Weil es uns dunkt er sei verreckt.        And numerous Sins upon his head;
                                        We buried him today because
                                        As far as we can tell, he's dead.

                -- PDQ Bach's epitaph, as requested by his cousin Betty
                   Sue Bach and written by the local doggeral catcher;
                   "The Definitive Biography of PDQ Bach", Peter Schickele
Hop along my little friends, up the Withywindle!
Tom's going on ahead candles for to kindle.
Down west sinks the Sun; soon you will be groping.
When the night-shadows fall, then the door will open,
Out of the winfow-panes light will twinkle yellow.
Fear no alder black!  Heed no hoary willow!
Fear neither root nor bough!  Tom goes on before you.
Hey now! merry dol!  We'll be waiting for you!
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
How doth the VAX's C-compiler
        Improve its object code.
And even as we speak does it
        Increase the system load.

How patiently it seems to run
        And spit out error flags,
While users, with frustration, all
        Tear their clothes to rags.
Humpty Dumpty sat on the wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall!
All the king's horses,
And all the king's men,
Had scrambled eggs for breakfast again!
I always will remember --                I was in no mood to trifle;
'Twas a year ago November --                I got down my trusty rifle
I went out to shoot some deer                And went out to stalk my prey --
On a morning bright and clear.                What a haul I made that day!
I went and shot the maximum                I tied them to my bumper and
The game laws would allow:                I drove them home somehow,
Two game wardens, seven hunters,        Two game wardens, seven hunters,
And a cow.                                And a cow.

The Law was very firm, it                People ask me how I do it
Took away my permit--                        And I say, "There's nothin' to it!
The worst punishment I ever endured.        You just stand there lookin' cute,
It turns out there was a reason:        And when something moves, you shoot."
Cows were out of season, and                And there's ten stuffed heads
One of the hunters wasn't insured.        In my trophy room right now:
                                        Two game wardens, seven hunters,
                                        And a pure-bred guernsey cow.
                -- Tom Lehrer, "The Hunting Song"
I gave my love an Apple, that had no core;
I gave my love a building, that had no floor;
I wrote my love a program, that had no end;
I gave my love an upgrade, with no cryin'.

How can there be an Apple, that has no core?
How can there be a building, that has no floor?
How can there be a program, that has no end?
How can there be an upgrade, with no cryin'?

An Apple's MOS memory don't use no core!
A building that's perfect, it has no flaw!
A program with GOTOs, it has no end!
I lied about the upgrade, with no cryin'!
I had an errand there: gathering water-lilies,
green leaves and lilies white to please my pretty lady,
the last ere the year's end to keep them from the winter,
to flower by her pretty feet till the snows are melted.

Each year at summer's end I go to find them for her,
in a wide pool, deep and clear, far down Withywindle;
there they open first in spring and there they linger latest.

By that pool long ago I found the River-daughter,
fair young Goldberry sitting in the rushes.
Sweet was her singing then, and her heart was beating!

And that proved well for you--for now I shall no longer
go down deep again along the forest-water,
no while the year is old.  Nor shall I be passing
Old Man Willow's house this side of spring-time,
not till the merry spring, when the River-daughter
dances down the withy-path to bathe in the water.
                -- J. R. R. Tolkien
I have a little shadow that goes in and out with me,
And what can be the use of him is more than I can see.
He is very, very like me from the heels up to the head;
And I see him jump before me, when I jump into my bed.

The funniest thing about him is the way he likes to grow--
Not at all like proper children, which is always very slow;
For he sometimes shoots up taller, like an india-rubber ball,
And he sometimes gets so little that there's none of him at all.
                -- R.L. Stevenson
I have learned
To spell hors d'oeuvres
Which still grates on
Some people's n'oeuvres.
                -- Warren Knox
I met him in a swamp down in Dagobah
Where it bubbles all the time like a giant carbonated soda
        S-O-D-A soda
I saw the little runt sitting there on a log
I asked him his name and in a raspy voice he said Yoda
        Y-O-D-A Yoda, Yo-Yo-Yo-Yo Yoda

Well I've been around but I ain't never seen
A guy who looks like a Muppet but he's wrinkled and green
        Oh my Yoda, Yo-Yo-Yo-Yo Yoda
Well I'm not dumb but I can't understand
How he can raise me in the air just by raising his hand
        Oh my Yoda, Yo-Yo-Yo-Yo Yoda, Yo-Yo-Yo-Yo Yoda
                -- Weird Al Yankovic, "The Star Wars Song," to the tune of
                   "Lola" by the Kinks
I must Create a System, or be enslav'd by another Man's;
I will not Reason and Compare; my business is to Create.
                -- William Blake, "Jerusalem"
I owe, I owe,
It's off to work I go...
I see a bad moon rising.
I see trouble on the way.
I see earthquakes and lightnin'
I see bad times today.
Don't go 'round tonight,
It's bound to take your life.
There's a bad moon on the rise.
                -- J. C. Fogerty, "Bad Moon Rising"
I sent a message to another time,
But as the days unwind -- this I just can't believe,
I sent a message to another plane,
Maybe it's all a game -- but this I just can't conceive.
...
I met someone who looks at lot like you,
She does the things you do, but she is an IBM.
She's only programmed to be very nice,
But she's as cold as ice, whenever I get too near,
She tells me that she likes me very much,
But when I try to touch, she makes it all too clear.
...
I realize that it must seem so strange,
That time has rearranged, but time has the final word,
She knows I think of you, she reads my mind,
She tries to be unkind, she knows nothing of our world.
                -- ELO, "Yours Truly, 2095"
I think that I shall never hear
A poem lovelier than beer.
The stuff that Joe's Bar has on tap,
With golden base and snowy cap.
The stuff that I can drink all day
Until my mem'ry melts away.
Poems are made by fools, I fear
But only Schlitz can make a beer.
"I thought that you said you were 20 years old!"
"As a programmer, yes," she replied,
"And you claimed to be very near two meters tall!"
"You said you were blonde, but you lied!"
Oh, she was a hacker and he was one, too,
They had so much in common, you'd say.
They exchanged jokes and poems, and clever new hacks,
And prompts that were cute or risque'.
He sent her a picture of his brother Sam,
She sent one from some past high school day,
And it might have gone on for the rest of their lives,
If they hadn't met in L.A.
"Your beard is an armpit," she said in disgust.
He answered, "Your armpit's a beard!"
And they chorused: "I think I could stand all the rest
If you were not so totally weird!"
If she had not said what he wanted to hear,
And he had not done just the same,
They'd have been far more honest, and never have met,
And would not have had fun with the game.
                -- Judith Schrier, "Face to Face After Six Months of
                Electronic Mail"
I used to be such a sweet sweet thing, 'til they got a hold of me,
I opened doors for little old ladies, I helped the blind to see,
I got no friends 'cause they read the papers, they can't be seen,
With me, and I'm feelin' real shot down,
And I'm, uh, feelin' mean,
        No more, Mr. Nice Guy,
        No more, Mr. Clean,
        No more, Mr. Nice Guy,
They say "He's sick, he's obscene".

My dog bit me on the leg today, my cat clawed my eyes,
Ma's been thrown out of the social circle, and Dad has to hide,
I went to church, incognito, when everybody rose,
The reverend Smithy, he recognized me,
And punched me in the nose, he said,
(chorus)
He said "You're sick, you're obscene".
                -- Alice Cooper, "No More Mr. Nice Guy"
I went over to my friend, he was eatin' a pickle.
I said "Hi, what's happenin'?"
He said "Nothin'."
Try to sing this song with that kind of enthusiasm;
As if you just squashed a cop.
                -- Arlo Guthrie, "Motorcycle Song"
I'll grant thee random access to my heart,
Thoul't tell me all the constants of thy love;
And so we two shall all love's lemmas prove
And in our bound partition never part.

Cancel me not -- for what then shall remain?
Abscissas, some mantissas, modules, modes,
A root or two, a torus and a node:
The inverse of my verse, a null domain.

I see the eigenvalue in thine eye,
I hear the tender tensor in thy sigh.
Bernoulli would have been content to die
Had he but known such a-squared cos 2(thi)!
                -- Stanislaw Lem, "Cyberiad"
I'm an artist.
But it's not what I really want to do.
What I really want to do is be a shoe salesman.
I know what you're going to say --
"Dreamer!  Get your head out of the clouds."
All right!  But it's what I want to do.
Instead I have to go on painting all day long.

The world should make a place for shoe salesmen.
                -- J. Feiffer
I'm N-ary the tree, I am,
N-ary the tree, I am, I am.
I'm getting traversed by the parser next door,
She's traversed me seven times before.
And ev'ry time it was an N-ary (N-ary!)
Never wouldn't ever do a binary. (No sir!)
I'm 'er eighth tree that was N-ary.
N-ary the tree I am, I am,
N-ary the tree I am.
                -- Stolen from Paul Revere and the Raiders
I'm So Miserable Without You It's Almost Like Having You Here
                -- Song title by Stephen Bishop.

She Got the Gold Mine, I Got the Shaft
                -- Song title by Jerry Reed.

When My Love Comes Back from the Ladies' Room Will I Be Too Old to Care?
                -- Song title by Lewis Grizzard.

I Don't Know Whether to Kill Myself or Go Bowling
                -- Unattributed song title.

Drop Kick Me, Jesus, Through the Goal Posts of Life
                -- Unattributed song title.
I've built a better model than the one at Data General
For data bases vegetable, animal, and mineral
My OS handles CPUs with multiplexed duality;
My PL/1 compiler shows impressive functionality.
My storage system's better than magnetic core polarity,
You never have to bother checking out a bit for parity;
There isn't any reason to install non-static floor matting;
My disk drive has capacity for variable formatting.

I feel compelled to mention what I know to be a gloating point:
There's lots of room in memory for variables floating-point,
Which shows for input vegetable, animal, and mineral
I've built a better model than the one at Data General.

                -- Steve Levine, "A Computer Song" (To the tune of
                   "Modern Major General", from "Pirates of Penzance",
                   by Gilbert & Sullivan)
I've finally found the perfect girl,
I couldn't ask for more,
She's deaf and dumb and over-sexed,
And owns a liquor store.
I/O, I/O,
It's off to disk I go,
A bit or byte to read or write,
I/O, I/O, I/O...
If an S and an I and an O and a U
With an X at the end spell Su;
And an E and a Y and an E spell I,
Pray what is a speller to do?
Then, if also an S and an I and a G
And an HED spell side,
There's nothing much left for a speller to do
But to go commit siouxeyesighed.
                -- Charles Follen Adams, "An Orthographic Lament"
If Dr. Seuss Were a Technical Writer.....

Here's an easy game to play.
Here's an easy thing to say:

If a packet hits a pocket on a socket on a port,
And the bus is interrupted as a very last resort,
And the address of the memory makes your floppy disk abort,
Then the socket packet pocket has an error to report!

If your cursor finds a menu item followed by a dash,
And the double-clicking icon puts your window in the trash,
And your data is corrupted 'cause the index doesn't hash,
then your situation's hopeless, and your system's gonna crash!

You can't say this?  What a shame, sir!
We'll find you another game, sir.

If the label on the cable on the table at your house,
Says the network is connected to the button on your mouse,
But your packets want to tunnel on another protocol,
That's repeatedly rejected by the printer down the hall,
And your screen is all distorted by the side effects of gauss,
So your icons in the window are as wavy as a souse,
Then you may as well reboot and go out with a bang,
'Cause as sure as I'm a poet, the sucker's gonna hang!

When the copy of your floppy's getting sloppy on the disk,
And the microcode instructions cause unnecessary risc,
Then you have to flash your memory and you'll want to ram your rom.
Quickly turn off the computer and be sure to tell your mom!

                -- DementDJ@ccip.perkin-elmer.com (DementDJ) [rec.humor.funny]
If I could read your mind, love,
What a tale your thoughts could tell,
Just like a paperback novel,
The kind the drugstore sells,
When you reach the part where the heartaches come,
The hero would be me,
Heroes often fail,
You won't read that book again, because
        the ending is just too hard to take.

I walk away, like a movie star,
Who gets burned in a three way script,
Enter number two,
A movie queen to play the scene
Of bringing all the good things out in me,
But for now, love, let's be real
I never thought I could act this way,
And I've got to say that I just don't get it,
I don't know where we went wrong but the feeling is gone
And I just can't get it back...
                -- Gordon Lightfoot, "If You Could Read My Mind"
If I could stick my pen in my heart,
I would spill it all over the stage.
Would it satisfy ya, would it slide on by ya,
Would you think the boy was strange?
Ain't he strange?
...
If I could stick a knife in my heart,
Suicide right on the stage,
Would it be enough for your teenage lust,
Would it help to ease the pain?
Ease your brain?
                -- Rolling Stones, "It's Only Rock'N Roll"
If I traveled to the end of the rainbow
As Dame Fortune did intend,
Murphy would be there to tell me
The pot's at the other end.
                -- Bert Whitney
In every job that must be done, there is an element of fun.
Find the fun and snap!  The job's a game.
And every task you undertake, becomes a piece of cake,
        a lark, a spree; it's very clear to see.
                -- Mary Poppins
In Xanadu did Kubla Khan
A stately pleasure dome decree:
Where Alph, the sacred river, ran
Through caverns measureless to man
Down to a sunless sea.
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers were girdled round:
And there were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forest ancient as the hills,
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.
                -- S.T. Coleridge, "Kubla Kahn"
It hangs down from the chandelier
Nobody knows quite what it does
Its color is odd and its shape is weird
It emits a high-sounding buzz

It grows a couple of feet each day
and wriggles with sort of a twitch
Nobody bugs it 'cause it comes from
a visiting uncle who's rich!
                -- To "It Came Upon A Midnight Clear"
It's faster horses,
Younger women,
Older whiskey and
More money.
                -- Tom T. Hall, "The Secret of Life"
It's gonna be alright,
It's almost midnight,
And I've got two more bottles of wine.
It's just a jump to the left
        And then a step to the right.
Put your hands on your hips
        And pull your knees in tight.
It's the pelvic thrust
        That really gets you insa-a-a-a-ane

        LET'S DO THE TIME WARP AGAIN!
                -- Rocky Horror Picture Show
It's just apartment house rules,
So all you 'partment house fools
Remember:  one man's ceiling is another man's floor.
One man's ceiling is another man's floor.
                -- Paul Simon, "One Man's Ceiling Is Another Man's Floor"
It's Like This

Even the samurai
have teddy bears,
and even the teddy bears
get drunk.
It's not against any religion to want to dispose of a pigeon.
                -- Tom Lehrer, "Poisoning Pigeons in the Park"
It's so confusing choosing sides in the heat of the moment,
        just to see if it's real,
Oooh, it's so erotic having you tell me how it should feel,
But I'm avoiding all the hard cold facts that I got to face,
So ask me just one question when this magic night is through,
Could it have been just anyone or did it have to be you?
                -- Billy Joel, "Glass Houses"
John the Baptist after poisoning a thief,
Looks up at his hero, the Commander-in-Chief,
Saying tell me great leader, but please make it brief
Is there a hole for me to get sick in?
The Commander-in-Chief answers him while chasing a fly,
Saying death to all those who would whimper and cry.
And dropping a barbell he points to the sky,
Saying the sun is not yellow, it's chicken.
                -- Bob Dylan, "Tombstone Blues"
Just a song before I go,                Going through security
To whom it may concern,                        I held her for so long.
Traveling twice the speed of sound        She finally looked at me in love,
It's easy to get burned.                And she was gone.
When the shows were over                Just a song before I go,
We had to get back home,                A lesson to be learned.
And when we opened up the door                Traveling twice the speed of sound
I had to be alone.                        It's easy to get burned.
She helped me with my suitcase,
She stands before my eyes,
Driving me to the airport
And to the friendly skies.
                -- Crosby, Stills, Nash, "Just a Song Before I Go"
K:        Cobalt's metal, hard and shining;
        Cobol's wordy and confining;
        KOBOLDS topple when you strike them;
        Don't feel bad, it's hard to like them.
                -- The Roguelet's ABC
Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Ether!  (ether who?)  Ether Bunny... Yea!
[chorus]
        Yeay!
        Stay on the Happy side, always on the happy side,
        Stay on the Happy side of life!
        Bum bum bum bum bum bum
        You will feel no pain, as we drive you insane,
        So Stay on the Happy Side of life!

Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Anna!  (anna who?)
        An another ether bunny... [chorus]
Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Stilla!  (stilla who?)
        Still another ether bunny... [chorus]
Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Yetta!  (yetta who?)
        Yet another ether bunny... [chorus]
Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Cargo!  (cargo who?)
        Cargo beep beep and run over ether bunny... [chorus]
Knock Knock...  (who's there?)  Boo!  (boo who?)
        Don't Cry!  Ether bunny be back next year! [chorus]
Ladies and Gentlemen, Hobos and Tramps,
Cross-eyed mosquitos and bowlegged ants,
I come before you to stand behind you
To tell you of something I know nothing about.
Next Thursday (which is good Friday),
There will be a convention held in the
Women's Club which is strictly for Men.
Admission is free, pay at the door,
Pull up a chair, and sit on the floor.
It was a summer's day in winter,
And the snow was raining fast,
As a barefoot boy with shoes on,
Stood sitting in the grass.
Oh, that bright day in the dead of night,
Two dead men got up to fight.
Three blind men to see fair play,
Forty mutes to yell "Hooray"!
Back to back, they faced each other,
Drew their swords and shot each other.
A deaf policeman heard the noise,
Came and arrested those two dead boys.
Latin is a language,
As dead as can be.
First it killed the Romans,
And now it's killing me.
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments.  Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O, no! it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question...
Oh, do not ask, "What is it?"
                -- T.S. Eliot, "Love song of J. Alfred Prufrock"
Little Fly,
Thy summer's play                If thought is life
My thoughtless hand                And strength & breath,
Has brush'd away.                And the want
                                Of thought is death,
Am not I
A fly like thee?                Then am I
Or art not thou                        A happy fly
A man like me?                        If I live
                                Or if I die.

For I dance
And drink & sing,
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.
                -- William Blake, "The Fly"
Louie Louie, me gotta go
Louie Louie, me gotta go

Fine little girl she waits for me
Me catch the ship for cross the sea
Me sail the ship all alone                Three nights and days me sail the sea
Me never thinks me make it home                Me think of girl constantly
(chorus)                                On the ship I dream she there
                                        I smell the rose in her hair
Me see Jamaica moon above                (chorus, guitar solo)
It won't be long, me see my love
I take her in my arms and then
Me tell her I never leave again
                -- The real words to The Kingsmen's classic "Louie Louie"
Margaret, are you grieving
Over Goldengrove unleaving?
Leaves, like the things of man,
You, with your fresh thoughts
Care for, can you?
Ah! as the heart grows older
It will come to such sights colder
By and by, nor spare a sigh
Though worlds of wanwood leafmeal lie
And yet you will weep and know why.
Now no matter, child, the name
Sorrow's springs are the same:
It is the blight man was born for,
It is Margaret you mourn for.
                -- Gerard Manley Hopkins.
Mummy dust to make me old;
To shroud my clothes, the black of night;
To age my voice, an old hag's cackle;
To whiten my hair, a scream of fright;
A blast of wind to fan my hate;
A thunderbolt to mix it well --
Now begin thy magic spell!
                -- Walter Disney, "Snow White"
My love, he's mad, and my love, he's fleet,
        And a wild young wood-thing bore him!
The ways are fair to his roaming feet,
        And the skies are sunlit for him.
As sharply sweet to my heart he seems
        As the fragrance of acacia.
My own dear love, he is all my dreams --
        And I wish he were in Asia.
                -- Dorothy Parker, part 2
My My, hey hey
Rock and roll is here to stay        The king is gone but he's not forgotten
It's better to burn out                This is the story of a Johnny Rotten
Than to fade away                It's better to burn out than it is to rust
My my, hey hey                 &n