Tag Archives: Internet

Holiday Laziness and The Internet Of Things

Stanko & Tibor: Holidays and The Internet of Things

Dateline December 26th, perilously close the freezing toilet, 
despite temperatures upsettingly close to global warming theoretical models

Internet of Things = Holiday Laziness

So if you dared to read the previous previous episode of this epistemological equivalent of recycled toilet paper from a Third World Communist-era country with high dysentery, you know full well that my thoughts of winter and cold led me to explain to you the prevalence of technology, our addiction to it, the impending tsunami of the Internet of Things. And, if you read between the lines, you know I’m not a very good hair stylist or theoretical physicist. But you really had to be paying attention for that one.

So as you can see, the holiday spirit has made me lazy too and I crapped out and came up with this easy to make and even easier to read episode of the comic that should be banned by authorities. But that has given me time to spend with my kids, my family and most importantly, myself. Mostly unconscious and on a couch, warmly cuddling my iPad like the child I always wanted. (It has an off switch. Just saying.)

So with the holiday season in full swing, and ever more ways for the marketers who control the Internet of Things to tell us what to buy, and why we need it, and subsequent ads custom tailored to trigger our deepest, darkest, most perverted desires and convert them into purchases, we have not only become grand and gross consumers, but lazy ones as well. One click, and it’s purchased and delivered to you by a human, a drone, or a drone human. This my friends, my Romans, my fellow slack-jawed readers is progress! (By the way, I got new ski boots, thus satisfying a four year desire/need that ranks close to food and sex.)

Not Progress

However, in this age of ease, laziness and three-toed sloth, technology has brought some dangerously unintended consequences, and I’m not talking about North Korea and China hacking my Twitter feed so that I am accused of calling the President of the United States a “running dog lackey of the cesspool of narco-porno-terrorism” — again. I am, however, talking about the technological scourge of our visual world known as High Definition TV, and the even more perilous and insidious 4K TV. That’s right, I said it, ultra-high definition TV is a bad thing because it allows us viewers to see the world as it is, and not as how it could be with gauze sheathed glasses.

Why such a scourge you ask? (Actually, since no one reads this comic/rant, no one sane is really asking. I am really the one asking. Besides most of my unwilling readers are actually bound and restrained, like Hannibal Lecter.)   Well, there are certain combinations that shouldn’t occur in nature, and one of them is pornography and high-definition TV. I know the imprisoned among you think this would be a good thing, but why would you want to see all those appendages, scars, tattoos, entry and exit points in such graphic detail? Don’t you have a hard enough time looking at yourself in the mirror in the morning, up close, to know that humans look pretty damn hideous in detail?

Not The Face and Definitely Not the Logic

Let’s skip the sexual appendages and areas for a minute and concentrate on the human face. Unless layers of makeup are applied, hairs are plucked just so, sleep has been had in adequate time increments, the lighting is just right, and the alcoholic content of the wine you guzzled is just short of jet fuel, it turns out that human faces aren’t as nice as we think they are. In fact, the human brain adapts to survive by deceiving itself so we believe that perfect he or she across the room is beautiful. Our brains shield us from the reality of the crooked nose, the pitted skin, the greasy patina on the nose, the uneven eye placement, the gummy smile, even the thin lips so we don’t have to deal with the reality that 4K and HD TV grant us.

So, if we logically extrapolate this hideous face architecture coupled with our inherent brain deception, and drop a couple of quadrants to the human private parts, and now think of those “bits” in super-mega-quintuple high-definition, not counting the aforementioned tattoos and scars, why the hell would you want to see “the piston scene” in ultra-high definition? Porn stars really aren’t that good-looking, because if they were they’d be in Hollywood.

Technology has given us too much, I say. I really don’t want to see a monkey’s hairy butt in that much detail, so why would I want to see a woman’s woo-hoo being invaded like Poland by some guy’s obscenely large wing-wang (yes, I always feel inferior) with a mind-boggling, vomit-inducing detail revealing “things” the human mind makes a dedicated effort to conceal, smudge, gloss over and otherwise make palatable through neural deception? We need the gauzy filters and lighting effects. We need special effects and makeup artists and regular definition TV so as not to see the high definition horrors of low production values that could lead to procreation. The logic of visual hyper-reality has no place in the bedrooms of the nation or the porno sets of Hollywood, Prague and Tokyo.

It almost makes me want to give up gettin’ funky with my significant other. That would be incomprehensible.

Incomprehensible Logic

Which brings me to the next thing beyond comprehension. Child-rearing. You see, my thoughts of the cold snow and ice reminded me that my car needs to have its winter tires put on, and thus I realized I would be sliding, swerving and slipping sideways and forward to my destination hoping I don’t crash and/or incur more costs or penalties. Traction control be damned, it is dicey out there.

Just like parenting. If I may use an automotive analogy (translation: this author is not a deep thinker), your offspring are kind of like an adrenaline junkie lead-footed driver in a car with bald tires, while you, the stupid, impetuous parents, are like stability and traction control, airbags and anti-lock brakes, doing everything you can to prevent or at least reduce the likelihood of massive fish-tailing, skidding, crashing, hydroplaning, uncontrolled sliding, rollovers and unintended off-road misadventures with drug-addled, tattooed people of the opposite or same-sex.

Your job, quite simply, is to get your children — legitimate, illegitimate, adopted or kidnapped, natural birth or from a test tube or as otherwise defined by the law and social conventions — to their destinations in life, somewhat safe and sound with as few scratches, replacement parts as possible, no blown gaskets, and most of their critical fluids intact.

Leaky Fluids

Sure, there will be episodes where “fluids” will leak, the airbags will figuratively deploy and the dashboard warning lights will light up the instrument pinnacle like a baboons behind in heat (usually after the child has experimented with acid in said parents’ basement, or gotten a tattoo with the name “Midge” in an all too prominent place). But what would a journey be if it didn’t include inclement weather, roadside assistance, more than a few blind curves, pot holes and running up on the sidewalk of life?

The biggest problem isn’t even so much keeping your kid on the road to adulthood despite the likelihood of he or she winding up in jail for public nudity. Rather, it’s that you as the equivalent of the automotive safety net also need to be a mechanic. As we know many are crooked, few are competent and most are high on paint and gasoline fumes. Which isn’t such an awful thing, it just makes social engagements and job interviews more difficult to complete without graphic profanity and dropping your pants for sheer shock effect (dad).

Being poor mechanics on top of being a safety net means we often cheap out on maintenance and replacement parts to ensure we have some profit margin to be able to save for retirement. The result usually is parenting that involves quick fixes (e.g. “go ask your mother, I’m watching cartoons”) or psycho- and electro-convulsive therapy.

Last and Least

Penultimately, your offspring, as represented by the vehicle in this story, slows down, wears itself out, kills the battery every so often, gets into an accident or gets a flat tire, and sometimes admits maybe a paint job is a good way to hide the damage. (Unless of course, said vehicle and driver are turning 50, have a collective midlife crisis, get a paint job and fender extensions, and modified parts, and then leave home to have an affair with another “dealer” so to speak.) But I digress.

Ultimately for the parent, you want to steer the vehicle and its occupants so that at some foolish point they can err fatally, not use birth control and then wind up being the safety net/mechanic to their own (un)planned adrenaline junkie lead-footed driver in a car with bald tires.

So it is with these random words, these unstructured, tangentially and loosely linked thoughts, these bumper car-like mental occurrences translated into key strokes that I bid you, the mentally degenerate readers of this chronicle a happy holiday season. Spend some time with the ones you love, or if you can’t do that because of the restraining order, buy more crap as a means to short-term happiness and self-fulfillment. It does work, I know from experience.

Subtly stubbly and monkeyishly hairy,

Guido the Christmas Mechanic

It’s the Internet Of Things, Stupid


Internet Of Things

Dateline: December 10th, 2014, 9:21 PM, sitting too close to an uninsulated bathroom with an arctic cold toilet seat. Feh.   

It’s the Internet Of Things, Stupid

Why is it that when the winter starts to descend upon the Third World roads I walk, drive and trip over every day that my thoughts turn to what’s wrong with the world? Is it a genetic deficiency on my part? (Likely) Is it the world wide scourge of marketing agencies lulling me into buying even more crap I don’t need? And quite successfully I might add? (Even more likely)

More technology than you can shake a stick at, that’s what the world needs, apparently. Not want, but need, t’would seem. If you look at the 2014 updated version of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, it’s right beside food, shelter and sex. And climbing higher. Why do we need it? Largely as a distraction from the things really ail us like crime, racism, processed foods, Russian and corporate egomaniacs, poor body hygiene, ebola, general body hairiness, sloth, more hairiness, my reliance on sugar, and people who use the word “dynamic” to describe food.

How do I know this to be true? While walking through the underground passageways in my fair and fairly awful city, I noticed a phenomena that actually reminded me of a scene I was once saw in a movie with Middle Age monks, walking with their robes on, through 15th century European filth and muck, all with their hoods up and all with heads slightly bowed. Hunched even. It was the standard religious posture with which they all held themselves. I couldn’t help wondering if those poor monk schmucks would suffer from a lifetime of bad posture and physiotherapy sessions, not really knowing if the local monastery had a decent health plan or an in-house masseur.

The Internet of Idiots

So it was with some bewilderment and amusement that I observed the very same behavior when I was on the metro. Just about everyone under the age of 65 in the metro station had their heads slightly bowed, leaning forward, shoulders slightly hunched, some folks with hats, given it’s winter, some tempting mother nature and leaving their heads exposed. And almost all of them with a smartphone (me included) playing some kind of game or surfing the Web, or just ignoring reality. All hunched, all with eyes down. Not unlike those monks of yore, these people were worshiping their new god — the smartphone. Or the Internet it is connected to.

With wireless connections and microchips everywhere, the marriage of smartphones and Internet, it appears that the computer gods have enslaved and outsmarted us. It is a case of technology ruling us and we are happy to be ruled (unless you’re my uncle). Happy that is, until we drop the phone in the toilet, or we have to deal with a company screwing us over for fraudulent billing charges. Bastards. Or when we have to switch smartphones or Internet providers, which is akin in some cases to switching religions for some, but I think is more like switching from heroin to morphine. Both are addictive and socially accepted as forms of passive recreation.

Worse, the resulting poor posture, bulging vertebrae and bent necks this devotion is causing across the globe will not only enrich the evil cabal of mobile phone makers, Internet providers and physiotherapists, all in cahoots to profit from our neck-craning, data-hoarding devices. It will have irreparable consequences when the aliens come to take over our planet. We’ll be too enamored, arthritic, bug-eyed and weak-willed due to our addiction to our smartphones and Internet connections to notice we’re about to become alien dog food. And even if we wanted to rise up against our new overlords (all hail them), we wouldn’t be able to look up at our enemy attackers due to said bent necks. How can we fire bullets or throw spears, rocks, bombs and fire rockets if we’re only able to stare at our feet? Ok, so maybe the alien invasion is a little far-fetched.

Sensors Everywhere

Some clarification is needed for the older generation. The Internet of Things is the stuff of dreams. Shakespeare even mentioned it in one his plays. Somewhere near the back of Othello, I think. With the Internet of Things, there will be sensors and software absolutely everywhere. In your fridge telling your phone that your mayonnaise’s best before date passed 2 years ago, and then alerting your local medical establishment and your place of work you’ll be calling in with food poisoning again after you decide to serve that horrible potato salad at Thanksgiving against the protests of your significant other, who says it gives you awful gas.

There will be chips in your toilet bowl sending info to your proctologist who will then call you at home and leave a message for your next appointment, and then subsequently take bets on what lame excuse you will use to postpone your next rectal invasion.

Cars will be able to talk to each other like never before. And not just to avoid crashing into each other. I can just envision two SUVs start trading gossip about their respective owners having affairs in the backseats of their cars. Then they threaten to extort their owners with all the collected data unless they get a lube job with full synthetic and a fresh air filter.

The Coup de Grace, Sucker

Perhaps most plausible Internet of Things scenario will be the chip implanted in your brain by the evil, secret collective of electronics and software makers, together with their twisted sisters in the fashion industry, subconsciously sending you messages while standing in the shower or in front of the mirror informing you that you’re too a) hairy, b) short, c) uncool, d) trampy, e) flatulent, f) vainglorious, g) skinny, h) fat, i) bald, j) cross-eyed, or k) all of the aforementioned to be acceptable in mixed company. Therefore you must buy the latest, outrageously priced wearable device that has already been mailed to your house and billed to your credit card.

So on that note, I wish you a peaceful sleep as you fall into slumber and oblivion over your respective devices that have replaced your sex lives with silicon (or is that silicone?) that wasn’t used for faulty breast implants.

Optimistically yours and impishly pimpled,

Latrine Cleaner 4th class, Semi-Private Druker

PS – if you choose to leave a comment, make sure to select your gender. Hint, hint.