Monday, January 15, 2018

The Fella Saw It Coming

For years the Smartfella has been warning all of you within warning distance of the possible dangers of the Smartphone. Now even the people who became filthy rich because of the Smartphone are beginning to see that it may not be the smartest thing they have ever sent down the pike.

 

There is no doubt that the Smartphone itself is a wonderful and amazing technological advancement, however, the Social Consequences of the Smartphone have started to raise their ugly heads and there is nothing pretty about their ugly heads…

Ø Even Apple Executives are worried about their iPhone’s tendency to monopolize attention.

Ø Facebook’s biggies are concerned about social media’s tendency to consume more and more user time.

Ø The situation is getting so bad that the American Psychiatric Association has come up with a name for what’s happening to our children. It’s called Internet Gaming Disorder.

 

From the early days of Digital Everything, the Fella has preached (but no one was listening to me) that an understanding of math is necessary to know if what a Calculator tells you is the answer is the answer. If you are solving for 2+2 and your answer comes out to be 255, you need to know that is a wrong answer. (You hit some wrong keys while inputting you input.)

 

A recent Wall Street Journal article tells me that the Wall Street Journal was worried…For homework, point an iPhone Camera at an Algebra Problem and PhotoMath solves it.

 

How can children learn to solve problems in an age when Smartphones provide instant answers? Their once knowledge seeking minds are “thinking” to their selves, “No need to understand the answer. It has to be right because my device says it’s right. The answer is the answer.”

 

Some pretty tech-savvy and influential organizations are urging Apple to develop new software tools that would help parents control and limit phone use more easily and are recommending that Apple dedicate money and attention towards studying the impact of overuse on mental health. (Wow! Mental Health! This is getting serious.)

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Of course you all remember my blog posting about the witness in court being unable to answer questions because he no longer talked but could only communicate by Texting…Or do u? That was silly of me…Or was it?

 

Actually that was just the tip of a Not-So-Silly Iceberg...

Ø The family of 6 sitting in a restaurant and every one of them working on their iPhone.

Ø The many videos on the Internet of people walking and looking down at their phones and bumping into things and actually falling to the ground then getting up and walk off while looking down at their phones.

Ø Again on the Internet, the famous video of the lady at a mall walking into the water fountain.

Ø The mother and child in a restaurant where she is on her phone and the child is playing with the salt and pepper shakers. (It’s called Modern Day Bonding.)

Ø The drivers at stop lights who do not get moving when the light changes until the car behind blows its horn. The driver of the car behind blows his horn because he is anxious to get to the phone store because he lost his Smartphone and he is on the way to get a new one.

Ø The Big Game is over. The 17 Gathered Game Watchers have just seen their team win the big game and all but 5 of them are jumping around with excitement. In the midst of all the excitement are 5 Smartphone users pecking at their devices as attentively as they would be pecking at them in the back of their chemistry class.

Ø The people who come down from the mountain top with 27 Selfies being asked, “Did you see that beautiful sunset?” and responding, “What sunset?”

Ø I also blogged about the fact that Dr. Jonas Salk would never have invented the Polio Vaccine if he were being constantly interrupted by text messages, emails, facebookers facebooking him, reminders, alarms and notifications about any of the these interruptions.

Ø The Tech Industry Executive was asked by his son, “What does God look like?” The Tech Daddy said, “No one knows?” The Tech Son replied without irony, “Why don’t we just go on God’s Facebook page and see?”

 

Don’t think that, now that the problem has reared its ugly head, everyone is going to step up and address this ugly problem. Some say it the parent’s responsibility to fix the ugly. Parents say it is Apple’s responsibility. Apple is defending its parental controls and other protections for children who use its iPhones, saying that it started offering some of them as early as 2008. In response parents are saying, “Oh yea! You are trying to shirk your responsibility. Well here is what I have to say about what you just said! … Oh, wait a minute. … I’ll get back to you. I just got a text message”.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

BeforeAfterPhones

Lagniappe: I’m a realists. I know that only 17.4% of you will read any further because 82.6% of you are tired of me for today but am pasting “I Was Gonna Find A Cure For All Forms Of Cancer” (a blog of mine from 2010) because I know that 17.4% will get a real chuckle…

 

I Was Going Find A Cure For All Forms Of Cancer

The smartest man who ever lived in the entire history of humankind on the face of the earth is about to publish an open email to every email address in the entire world. Since us knowledge seekers often seek the counsel of other knowledge seekers he first sent the email to me for proofreading and spell checking. He was so grateful to me for the misspelled word I found he gave me permission to publish his email, in its entirety, in Foolishness…Or Is It?

 

I bet you are excited! Here is the email…

“At a very young age I came to the realization that I was, without a doubt, the smartest man who ever lived in the entire history of humankind on the face of the earth. I then quickly determined that what I wanted to do with my life was find a cure for all forms of cancer. I took out my calculator and quickly ascertained that it would take 7.45 years of dedicated hard work and research to accomplish this lofty goal. (I may have been a few months off in my 7.45 years estimate above but it was very close to the actual number because you should remember I am the smartest man who ever lived in the entire history of humankind on the face of the earth.)

 

I was three weeks into my Herculean Cancer Cure Task and was making great progress when I discovered Social Networking (My Space, Twitter, Face Book, etc.). I was instantly captivated. I could not think of doing anything else with my life other than Social Networking.

 

During my Social Networking endeavors I am proud to say that I have accomplished many Great Social Feats. Space limitations (and an irresistible compulsion to get back to my morning Twittering regimen) prohibit me from bragging too much about my Social Accomplishments but here are a few…

Ø August 2, 1998 … I am sitting on my couch thinking about getting up to make myself a peanut and jelly sandwich.

Ø June 27, 2005 … I mailed the Social World the first in a series of pictures of myself eating a cinnamon and raisin bagel.

Ø January 8, 2007 … I laughed so hard that I had tears in my eyes after getting a picture of Alfonzo (an accountant from Bulgaria whom I have never met but am proud to say is one of my 21,376,412 Face Book Followers) sticking his tongue out at the camera while wearing a red clown nose ball on his left index finger.

 

I cannot tell you how Socially Fulfilling my life has been to this point. Each day is another pleasure to me. There are times I start to feel a twinge of regret for all those millions of people all over the Earth I could have saved from the debilitating effects, pain, suffering, financial ruin and death that cancer caused them but in life one must make choices and I chose Social Networking.

 

If any of you reading this email wants to send me your address, I will be more than glad to add you as a follower of mine on my Twitter Account. Nothing could make me happier than to have you as a fellow Twit.”

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Do The English Use Their Language To Better Affect Than We Use Their Language?

In describing their many Parliaments the British have called them really neat, descriptive and appropriate names such as:

Ø Blessed Parliament

Ø Happy Parliament

Ø Useless Parliament

Ø Rump Parliament

Ø Barebone’s Parliament

 

The list is a lot longer than this but these are the ones that caught my Foolish Eye.

 

In the case of our Congresses, we just put numbers in front of the word “Congress” and move on. Ah, if we were only as imaginative as the British…

Ø Blessed Congress: I don’t remember us having any Blessed Congress unless they were the very first few Congresses. By the time we got to the 3rd or 4th Congress members figured out that other members thought thoughts. They quickly figured out that many of them thought thoughts that were different from their own thoughts. It was at that point in our evolving history that The Other Guy was invented. That’s when the trouble really started.

Ø Happy Congress: We have had many Happy Congresses. Maybe I ought to clarify this one. I should have said we have had many Happy Hour Congresses.

Ø Useless Congress: We certainly have had a number of Useless Congresses.

Ø Rump Congress: Since “Rump” can refer to the back end of a horse, you must agree that we have had many Rump Congresses.

Ø Barebone Congress: The Barebone’s Parliament actually got its name from a person (The nominee for the City of London, Praise-God Barebone.) However, if Barebone is used to refer to the accomplishments of a particular congress, we have certainly had a number of Barebone Congresses. They are SortaLike Useless Congress (See above).

 

Allow me to finish this Foolishness with a reference to Oliver Cromwell’s immortal words to the Rump Parliament in 1653 and the plagiarized use of these nifty words by Leo Amery to the Chamberlain Government in 1940…

” You have sat too long for any good you have been doing lately... Depart, I say; and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!”

Here is a finish after the finish by the Smartfella about our Congress…

“They do go. They go home every week. The problem is they come back the next week. (Unless they are on Recess, Vacation or Home Work Period).”

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

Sunday, January 07, 2018

I Just Heard Someone Say, “Under Ordinary Circumstances” And I Said To Myself, “Self, What’s Ordinary?”

I have a feeling that the world we live in has always been Extraordinary but, if it was not always that way, it is now.

Nothing is “Ordinary” any longer. There used to be things we could depend on because that’s just the way it was. Now we are beleaguered by the Topsy-Turvy, Upside Down, Crazy, Unbelievable, Strange, etc.

 

What am I talking about? Here are a few examples…

Ø If your parents found out that Sister Mary Mary had to discipline you by hitting you on your hand with her ruler, you got hit with another ruler at home. Now parents run screaming (closely followed by their lawyer) to the school to give Sister Mary Mary a piece of their mind.

Ø In San Francisco people used to jump off the Golden Gate Bridge and die. Now Bridge Officials are installing a System of Nets that will cost over $200 Million Dollars to discourage jumpers.
>Did you notice the word “over” in the above bullet, as in “over $200 Million Dollars”. Do you know how high over $200 Million Dollars “over $200 Million Dollars” can go? I don’t and they don’t either.

>Current news reports say initially the cost was to be $76 Million Dollars. I wrote about this craziness in 2008 and I know that at that time Bridge Officials were saying it would cost between $40 and $50 Million Dollars. This can only mean that they are lying about their past lies.
>In my 2008 Blog Posting I pointed out that people who want to commit suicide want to commit suicide. This means that they are going to scramble across the net and fall over the edge of the net so they can continue to commit suicide.
>Bridge Officials will find that, in order to prevent the suicide determined jumpers from continuing to commit suicide, guards with rifles will have to be employed to shoot them before they get to the edge of the net.

Ø Phone Booths were everywhere but none were called Cars.

Ø Boys were boys and girls were girls.

Ø We used to work and study hard so we could get to the point where we deserved the things we acquired. Now we see and hear commercials every day that tell us we deserve lots of things (start paying attention to commercials and you will be amazed at all the things the announcer says you deserve)…A trip to Hawaii, A big screen TV, Not to have to pay your credit card balance in full, A dental implant, An Apple Watch (And every other Electronic Device there is out there), etc.

Ø Only men and women married each other.

Ø We used to address people older than us as “Sir” and “Ma’am”. I still do that but I don’t limit it to the few people that are older than I am. The look of confusion on the faces of those around me when I do this is beautiful to behold. Occasionally someone will say. “You must be from down south”. To which I happily reply, “Yes, sir/ma’am, I am”.

Ø We used to say, “Hello or Good Morning”. From that we progressed to, “Where ya at, man”. Then we progressed further on to, “Hey, dude”. I don’t consider this “Progress” Progress.

Ø The Cubs could not win the World Series.

Ø We used to put on a Coat and Tie to go pick people up at the Airport. Now we go to Sunday Morning Church dressed as if we just got back from the Beach or out of the Garden.

Ø Dogs and Trees were not People Too.

Ø We all only had 7 TV Channels. We watched 3 to 4 of our 7 TV Channels. Now we pay through the nose so we can brag that we have 552 TV Channels but we watch 3 to 4 of our 552 TV Channels.

Ø The MailMan was called the MailMan and not the PersonPerson.

Ø Politicians did not lie every time they opened their mouths…Or did they not?

Ø We used to be required to be home in time to sit at the Dinner Table for Family Dinner and we did not consider it a Requirement. We sat up straight and said “please” a lot. Now Family Dinners are only seen on Ozzie and Harriet and Ozzie and Harriet is not seen and I am considered Out of Step because I just changed my Email Lagniappe Signature to… "No text message is ever worth interrupting a meal with people you love."

 

Maybe the Good Ole Days were really not as Good as we make them out to be but I do think they were less confusing.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

 

Lagniappe: In 1970 I ate at a well-known restaurant in Shreveport, LA that had been there for many years and it had a sign in its foyer from its early days of operation that read, “It’s tough to spend 75 Cents for a steak, but if you spend 50 Cents, it’s tougher”.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Is It Really That Dangerous?

Micro Drone Specifications:

Dimensions…2.3 Inches X 2.3 Inches

Weight…3.8 ounces

clip_image001clip_image003

 

Do you think the Drone is Dangerous?

 

If you said “No”, you are wrong!

 

The booklet that comes with it thinks it is Very Dangerous. Pages 2 thru 11 the booklet tells you how dangerous it really is…

Ø 5 Cautions

Ø Important Safety Instruction Message: “All of the safety and operating instructions should be read, adhered to and followed before the unit is operated”. (I guess there is a difference between “Adhered To” and “Followed”.)

Ø 41 Warnings

Ø 5 Danger Caution Warnings (or are they Danger Warning Cautions?)

 

Inside the booklet there is…

Ø Another Caution: (Yes, All Caps) “DO NOT ATTEPMT TO FLY THE MICRO DRONE IF THERE IS RAIN, SNOW, HEAVY WINDS, THUNDER OR LIGHTENING OUTDOORS. IT COULD DAMAGE YOUR PRODUCT AND MAY CAUSE BODILY HARM”.

Ø 3 More Warnings

 

One of the strangest Dangers Caution Warnings is, “Do not use while bathing or in a shower”.

 

As you, my dear readers, may remember, I bought a handgun on Black Friday last. I don’t want you to think I am going overboard with this Blog Posting nor do I want you to think I am going crazier than you may already think I am crazy, so I won’t go count up what I am wondering about…

I wonder if the Handgun Handbook had this many Warnings, Cautions and Dangers?

Maybe I am overreacting. It just might cause a rather serious dent in a person if a 2.3 inch X 2.3 inch 3.8 ounces flying thingy flew into his chest…Or could it?

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

 

Lagniappe: I know I have several lawyers among my Dear Readers. I can just hear them thinking to their collective selves, “This is unconscionable! How could such a dangerous projectile be released upon an unsuspecting public with only 6 Cautions, 44 Warnings and 5 Danger Caution Warnings? With every passing day I am more and more convinced that they need people of my ilk!” (I just love using the word “ilk”.)

Tuesday, January 02, 2018

One A Day Multiple Foolishness

I have a friend who has a wife (she is also a friend) who once cooked a different recipe for dinner every night for the 365 days in that year.

 

I have enough blog ideas already written to post one every day of 2018.

 

I am using this Blog Posting to tell you not to worry. I’m not going to do that.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

 

Lagniappe: I might have taken on this Herculean Task but I already missed January 1st. I was too busy yesterday making up a list of excuses why the Georgia Bulldogs were going to lose last night to the Oklahoma Sooners. Smile

An Old Serious Issue Is Still An Important Serious Issue If It Is Still An Issue

I hate the Scroll

Several years ago I took note of an Issue that I thought was important. I put it into a folder on my computer entitled, My Email “Wisdom” and promptly forgot about it.

 

For those of you who object to my calling my own Mind Wandering “Wisdom”, find something else you object to about me because I put the word “Wisdom” in quotation marks which, of course, means I acknowledge that my Wisdom may not be grounded in Intellectually Defensible Thought…Or is it?

 

I’m going to move on now because these first two paragraphs have confused me.

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This “Wisdom” started wandering through my mind as I was watching our president (it does not make any difference which president) was making a very serious speech in London, England.

 

During the entirety of his important speech (on CNN) that Infernal Scroll was scrolling across the bottom of the screen.

 

Is the serious speech important or not? If it is important, why is other information constantly being passed before our eyes? It is really hard to stay fixated on what is being said while the scroll is doing its best to distract our attention.

 

I would agree that a scroll is serving a useful purpose if it is giving us other more important information like…

Ø An atomic bomb has just destroyed Toledo.

Ø Jennifer and Chuck have just called it quits.

Ø No one left alive after an earthquake destroys Denver.

 

I was trying to not look at the scroll but, at one point while I was being distracted, I thought to myself...

Is it really necessary to scroll before me “Happy Birthday Larry King and Ted Turner” while the President is trying to convey serious information about important stuff?

 

It is time for me to swear. I made up the information about Toledo, Jennifer and Chuck and Denver but I swear I actually saw “Happy Birthday Larry King and Ted Turner” pass before my disbelieving eyes.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Water Heater Inspections Are Us

The above Subject is a good one for what you are about to read in this Blog Posting. Another title I could have used is…

“You Are Going To Think I Made This One Up”

On December 16, 2017 I received an email from the company who installed my new Water Heater on December 1, 2017. Here is what they told me about the safety inspection that is required of all Water Heater Installations performed in our County…

Call our Office at (xxx)xxx-xxxx as soon as possible so we can schedule your inspection. (Yes, it was written in Red.) Our County strives to perform each inspection on the date requested. To establish a set time range for the inspection please contact the inspectors directly, the day prior to the Inspection, by calling xxx-xxx-xxxx between 7:00 – 7:30 AM. You must speak directly with the inspector to confirm a preferred time range. Due to the high volume of inspection requests, some inspections may be delayed one or two business days. Please plan accordingly.

Notice the Words Of Urgency… “as soon as possible”, “contact the inspectors directly” and “You must speak directly with the inspector”.

 

This is obviously an Important Letter about an Important Inspection that must be complied with because of the Very Serious Consequence that could attack me if my Gas Water Heater has been installed incorrectly.

 

I was a bit nervous as I started to do what I had to do to comply with the Safety Requirements as laid out by my County Government.

 

Here is how it played out…

Ø I called immediately as directed to do by my installation company.

Ø The nice lady at the installation company did not seem near as nervous as I was but I attributed that to the fact that the whole process had become routine because of the many times she has had to handle these Very Important Inspection Setup Procedures.

Ø We agreed that my Very Important Safety Inspection was going to be conducted on Thursday the 28th.

Ø I put into my iCloud Calendar a notation (with alarm) that I was going to have to call and speak to my Safety Inspector on Wednesday the 27th about my Safety Inspection on Thursday the 28th.

Ø I chose 7:05am as the time my alarm was going to alarm me on Wednesday the 27th because I did not want to miss complying with the very short window of opportunity that had been given to me to call and speak to my Safety Inspector about his arrival at my house to perform my Very Important Safety Inspection.

Ø At 7:05am my alarm alarmed me but, to be honest with you, I was nervously watching, waiting and looking at my iPhone starting about 2 minutes before my alarm was set to alarm me.

Ø I dialed the important phone number and it was answered on the second ring.

Ø I remember thinking that the important answerer was standing by waiting for the phone to ring because he was fully aware about how important these incoming calls were.

Ø I blurted out my information (I had rehearsed)…My Name, Street Address, My County Permit Number and I waited for instructions.

Ø He said, “You need to phone back tomorrow (Thursday) between 7 and 7:30am which is the actual day of your safety inspection”.

Ø I said I had been told to call the day before the inspection.

Ø He said, “You need to phone back tomorrow (Thursday) between 7 and 7:30am which is the actual day of your safety inspection”.

Ø I told him I would comply with his instructions and call back tomorrow (Thursday).

Ø I put into my iCloud Calendar a notation (with alarm) that I was going to have to call back the next day (Thursday) and speak to my Safety Inspector.

Ø At 7:05am the next day (Thursday) my alarm alarmed me.

Ø I dialed the important phone number and it was answered on the second ring.

Ø I blurted out my information (I had again rehearsed)…My Name and Street Address but I left out my County Permit Number (I guess I was on edge) and I waited for instructions.

Ø The Safety Inspector who had answered my important call said, “We can’t schedule you till next Tuesday”.

Ø I quickly went through all of what you have read above and then the Safety Inspector Scheduler said, “What is your County Permit Number?

Ø I gave it to him and he said, “Your Safety Inspection is setup to be performed tomorrow (Friday)”.

Ø I asked what time tomorrow (Friday)?

Ø He said, “You need to phone back tomorrow (Friday) between 7 and 7:30am which is the actual day of your safety inspection”.

Ø I asked if he could give it to me now and save me having to phone back tomorrow (Friday).

Ø He said, “You need to phone back tomorrow (Friday) between 7 and 7:30am which is the actual day of your safety inspection”.

Ø I told him I would comply with his instructions and call back on tomorrow (Friday).

Ø Then a strange thing happened. He said that my Safety Inspector was not available on tomorrow (Friday).

Ø I asked if he was sick or just not available on tomorrow (Friday) and, if he were not available on tomorrow (Friday), how could he do my Important Safety Inspection tomorrow (Friday).

Ø He completely ignored my question and said, “You need to phone back tomorrow (Friday) between 7 and 7:30am which is the actual day of your safety inspection”.

Ø I told him I would comply with his instructions and call back tomorrow (Friday).

Ø I put into my iCloud Calendar a notation (with alarm) that I was going to have to call back tomorrow (Friday) and speak to my Safety Inspector who would not be available to speak to me.

Ø At 10:30am (about 2 hours later) my doorbell rang.

Ø When I opened the door, there stood my Safety Inspector ready for action.

Ø I came to attention and said that I was surprised to see him today because my inspection was set up for tomorrow (Friday) not today (Thursday).

Ø He did not seem at all interested in what I had just said to him.

Ø I opened the garage so he could inspect my water heater which lives in the garage.

Ø If he had had a 10 Foot Pole, he could have used it to touch my Water Heater because that is about how close he got to my Water Heater.

Ø If the inventor of the 10 Foot Pole had invented the 11 Foot Pole instead of the 10 Foot Pole, he could probably have used that to touch my Water Heater because that is probably how close he actually got to my Water Heater.

Ø He said, “That looks good. I’ll tell the computer that your Water Heater is safe”.

Ø If my garage door had been set to start closing as soon as it reached fully open, he probably could have made it back out of the garage without bumping his head.

 

I feel so much better because I now know My Water Heater Is Safe … Or Is It Has Been Inspected for Safety? … Or Is It Has Been Safely Inspected From A Safe Distance? … Or Is It It Has Been Checked Off In the County Computer?

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For those of you who are still with me on this one, I would like to bring you my thinking from my…

Stop and Think About It Department

Ø This County Inspection Requirement is setup because of safety concerns for county residents.

Ø If there were a safety problem with the installation of my New Water Heater, it would probably have raised its ugly head right after the installer had finished the installation.

Ø What I mean is my garage would have blown up during the first night after installation as we slept while our newly installed but Uninspected Water Heater was heating our water in our garage.

Ø Our Yet-To-Be-Certified-As-Safe Water Heater was installed on December 1st.

Ø It was certified as Safe on December 29th.

Ø Does it not seem logical to you that the Safety Inspector should have done his Safety Inspection on the Day of Installation before I laid me down to sleep?

 

This looks like a cushy job to me. I’m going to apply for employment as a County Water Heater Safety Inspector.

 

I bet the County would even furnish me with my very own 10 to 11 Foot Inspection Pole.

 

Would I kid u?

Smartfella

Saturday, December 23, 2017

He Was There Behind Me And Then He Was Gone

During the period of time when I was rising to the height of my mediocre automotive career, I found myself in the Lincoln Mercury Headquarters in Dearborn, MI. This building was the former Headquarters of Ford Motor Company when Henry Ford was running his company.

One of the things I remember from my visit was a large sign on the door leading out of the Men’s Room which read, “Check Your Attire”.

 

Mr. Ford ran a tight ship and he wanted his people to look properly dressed at all times.

 

Recently I was in the Men’s Room of a Ritz Carlton Hotel. As I was about to leave the Men’s Room I saw a very large mirror leaning against the wall. Seeing the mirror there made me think of Mr. Ford’s Exit Sign and I decide to Check My Attire.

 

As I looked in the mirror I remembered thinking I looked pretty good (considering it was me that I was looking at). Then I noticed that my Fly Was Open. In the instance it took me to zip up I saw a smiling Henry Ford behind me…

 HenryF  

And, in the next instant, he was gone.

Poof

Thank you, Mr. Ford. I’ll keep a watchful eye out for such things in the future.

Would I kid u?

Smartfella