Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Ain’t Virtual Reality Grand?

Ain’t virtual reality grand, and isn’t it a great teaching tool?

Well, maybe; depends.  Today I watched a 5th grader play a ‘virtual reality” plumbing game on his computer during “free time” (actually, I think he was just doing whatever he wanted to do, regardless).  But the problem wasn’t that the shit in the toilet that he plunged didn’t stink.  The real problem was that I saw no indication that the author of the game knew: “hot on the left, cold on the right”, much, much less, “shit goes downhill”.

Having just spent a few back breaking hours digging gravel and leaves out my culverts after 12 plus inches of rain in one month, I was struck by the fact that in the game, I didn’t see any indication that a clog must be fixed from the bottom up, and a leak from the top down.  Physics my dear; fluid dynamics and the brush pile effect.

So, virtual reality isn’t going to teach anyone very much if it doesn’t acknowledge what “real” is in the first place.  TV was supposed to be the teaching innovation of the 20th century.  Virtual reality has just as many promoters now.  Wanna bet what it is all going to be used for?

Yup, just like 90% of TV.

Some days I'm just not very patient. Beans

Hudson Valley Seed Company

Accord, NY 12404  845 204 8769


Business model #1:  Convince your customers to use 10 times as much of your product as is actually optimal.  Think toothpaste commercials.

Business model #2:  Steal from your customers.  The ones that notice, you apologize to and give them their money back; that ones that don’t notice, you keep the money. 

Business model #3:  Do any fucking thing to maximize your profits, there are plenty of new marks out there for you to scam tomorrow if you lose a customer today.


Dear Hudson Valley:  I’m trying to decide if you are # 1, #2, #3, or all of the above.    Please explain to me which of these descriptions of your company is correct.

On your package instructions (Silver Cloud Cannellini) you suggest that I plant your beans 1 inch apart (plants that are advertized as being 20 inches high and should be 24 inches apart at maturity). You suggest that I thin the unneeded plantlets.  Either you expect less than 7% germination (abysmal to say the least), or you want me to throw away 92% of the seeds I bought from you after they’ve sprouted.  That’s assuming that I start with 24 inch rows (one inch apart if literally adhered to would use up your package of 150 seeds up in a bed 12 inches by 12 inches, meaning I should thin down to ONE plant).

 Now before you laugh, or write me off as a sucker deserving of your scam because I’m stupid, please consider that I’m an experienced gardener of more than 50 years, and that I have a masters degree in biology.  

What I’m not is someone who will follow your business model no matter whether it is #1, #2, or #3.  So if it isn’t one of those, stop suggesting that your customers waste seed like tooth paste.  

Really, one inch apart; on what planet?

P.S. you needn't thank me for the free publicity.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Only a Stalinist

Only a Stalinist would say that a person who doesn’t want their money to go to a TV talking head who uses ad hominem attacks on children who speak their minds have no rights.

Only a Stalinist would twist the meaning of “free speech” to include the idea that they get to say anything, and no one has the right to react to it.

Only a Stalinist political party would pass legislation that bars a doctor from talking to parents about unsecured guns in the home of a disturbed child.  Only a Stalinist would pass legislation that bars any one from studying gun violence in a country that has more gun deaths per capita than countries that are at war.

Only a Stalinist would tout the free market and then complain when it dumps their product.

Laura Ingraham is only a Stalinist who calls other people “Stalinist”.

Conservatives believe in the free market.  I do too.  I am free to boycott the products of anyone I choose.  I choose to never spend a penny on anything sold by any company that supports Laura Ingraham.

Call me a Stalinist.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Vote with your wallet Number Three: Ingraham Addition

This form can be copied pasted and modified to express your disgust, and plans to act on same, for any spokesperson who is making money while being a jerk:

Dear Sirs or Madam: (Add the company of your choice) 

It has often occurred to me that many people in the media have been given a platform. They abuse this honor in order to say outrageous things just to stir things up and get attention (and therefore exposure), even though many of these things are demonstrably false, or slanderous, or just plain mean and hurtful.  Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham (@IngrahamAngle )
, Roseanne, and many others do this, even repeating lies that they know to be damaging to innocent people.  They even get paid an obscene amount of money for doing so.

All that money ultimately comes from me, but only IF I choose to support the sponsors of the platforms.  Maybe I can do something about that.

So now, when I read about these people making ridiculously inciteful (not to be confused with insightful) pronouncements; I plan to make a list of sponsors so that I won't make the mistake of ever patronizing any of their products. 

    You Mr. Advertiser/Sponsor are on that list.

I am sharing these observations and the information I have recorded, with as many people as I can; as often as I can.   I am encouraging others to follow my example; in any case, YOU are not getting any of my money, ever. 


(Your name; feel free to copy any part, print and send to your favorite. A hand written name after "Sirs:" and a note added after "Sincerely," adds weight to any communication. P.S. Snail mail is probably the most effective, I signed my letters, you should too.  You can make multiple copies of this for multiple sponsors). 

The following are the sponsors:  Here's where you prove that you are serious.  You list the sponsors of the offending jerk's program.

Monday, March 26, 2018



Never in my most self indulgent, narcissistic, self delusional moments have I ever thought of myself as “a patient person”.  But I do believe that volunteering many hours in a classroom of fifth graders for the last several years has taught me something.

I’ve learned that it is way easier to be patient with “self indulgent, narcissistic, self delusional fifth graders” than it is to attain the same feeling of equanimity with adults. 

The kids have an excuse!  They’re kids, experimenting with what works on planet earth among humans, dogs, cats, and their peers, (remember, the adults hold all the power).  What can you say for adults that act like: “Whatever I can get away with, is what I can get away with”?  Not to mention… And now I will mention…

Not to mention that if you are rich enough, you can get away with almost anything.  If you’ve been rich your entire life, you may have never learned any limits on anything.  You have always gotten away with everything.  I’m not a psychoanalyst, but I guess you know where this is going.

“Human nature isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.”

I said that.   I still say that often.  It may be something that I’ll be most famous for, if I am ever famous for anything.  I do so love quotations of well spoken truths.

So, here is the assumption: “Human nature” is a thing, and it is, what it is.  Whoop-de-doo. A syllogismI'm not supposed to have to tell you that the sky is blue and you're not supposed to argue with me about it.

I’ve found that fifth grader's “human nature” is a step above what I’ve seen from adults.  As “un-civilized” and “un-socialized” as they may be, the children are still more empathic and self aware than many of the adults that we encounter daily in life, and in the news; many of whom say that they are leaders and that they are leading.

Friday, March 9, 2018

But we don’t believe

We don’t believe:

Republicans stand for balanced budgets and equitable taxes, the tax bill of 2018.

Republicans stand for free trade, Trump’s tariffs and “…trade wars are good…”

Republicans stand for “family values”, Trump’s three wives and adultery with all of them.

Republicans stand for personal responsibility for one’s words and deeds, Stormy Daniels.

Republicans stand for patriotism, allowing Russia to continue to mess with our elections.

Republicans respect democracy.  Republicans respect planet Earth.

Republicans support “all the best people”.  Examples: Flynn, Scaramucci, Pruitt, DeVos, etc.

Nazis are very fine people.

Anyone can stand in the same room with Donald Trump without getting shit on them.

America is being made great again.

Friday, March 2, 2018

We Believe Him

We, of course, believe him.

DonDon Trump averred that he would have courageously charged into the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and even unarmed would have taken out the shooter with the AR-15.  

Of course, we all believe him.  He’s not delusional with fantasies of grandeur.  

Nope, he’s a very stable genius.