The Internet Of Things Strikes Again
I think it was a frigid Tuesday, the temperature ricocheting around between -18ºC and -25ºC (mind-numbingly cold even in Fahrenheit), the ice and snow pelting me by the evil, arctic winds it was carried upon, when someone asked me how I felt. Truth be told, I felt old. Old and creaky. Like a wooden chair, all finely carved and poorly assembled, and somewhat squeaky. And when weight is applied in any measure, quite creaky and a little unstable. This led me to think, ‘how should we really calculate our age?”
I am sure there is some Internet site that can tell me my age just by the shows I watch. Or by the expressions I use. Or by my fondness for sugary, mass produced confectionaries that were banned after the Vietnam war, yet appear regularly in my supermarket with misleading nutritional information (like 3 essential vitamins and minerals). But it can’t tell me how old I feel.
You see, while there are brilliant algorithms to determine much of what life is, how we will behave, what shoes we’ll buy, how we will not clean our toe nail clippers properly before giving them to our loved ones, etc., I don’t think those crafty mathematicians and scientists have come up with a method to determine the age you actually feel. That particular day, with the remnants of kidney stones tearing their way through my lower innards and an achy back from exerting myself too much on the ski hill, I certainly felt older than my current age would dictate.
My Smart House
If the Internet Of Things came to my house, and made my low IQ house even a little “smart” as the great minds of today promise it will, it could detect what kind of mood I am in, or how much pain I am working through after having schlepped the laundry upstairs while trying to balance an iPad, a glass of water and maybe some dry, sugary cereal I claim as my dessert. All the sensors would talk to each other, scan me, record and break down the decibels of my grunts and frequency of my “oys”, cobble together some kind of mathematcial result and spit a response on a screen with a synthetic yet soothing female voice saying “Mr. Druker, after deep data analysis and excruciating calculations our sensors and flawless programming believe that you should really update your will in the next hour because the statistical likelihood of you making it down the stairs without smashing your head is 0.0002%.”
My Internet-enabled house would begin to offer me a cane when I try to get off the toilet or have 9-1-1 on speed dial just in case I can’t open my various and sundry pill bottles and wind up losing my temper in a fit of rage. Again. It would probably have a flashing sign out front saying “Old fart lives here.”
Do the Math
Still that wouldn’t answer my question of how old I feel. To be honest, there is a simple way to calculate age that has nothing to do with what’s printed on your birth certificate or driver’s license. Currently, I have the kidneys of a 70-year old boxer who has taken more than body blow. Add to that the knees of someone who has skied recklessly for decades, so let’s put those joints at 86 years of age. Bowels and the digestive system are well into the 60’s if you count the frequency of antacid pills I have begun to take with every coffee or remotely spicy food (say goodbye to Tabasco). The excess of body hair in places where it shouldn’t be, and the desert-like dearth of where body hair should be would indicate my telomeres and other assorted genetic material have begun unwinding like poorly tied French braids, or a cheap shoe lace with a crappy aglet. Let’s say that puts my general physique at 67 going on 90.
However, we have forgotten to account for my near OCD fondness for cartoons, comics, just about anything animated and detached from reality, which would put my viewing tastes at 11 years of age. Add to that my fondness for fart jokes and other sophomoric toilet humor and maybe I have the maturity level of a 14 year old boy just as his voice is cracking. Cap that off with my industrial-sized addiction to sugary foods and keen eye for the crappiest cereal in the breakfast aisle at the supermarket, and my dietary direction is that of a 13 year old.
If we also account for solar flares, the gravitational pull of various back holes, and my dangerous exposure to lead-based paints my parents painted my toys with when I was but an infant to see if I would turn out “low normal” then we could reasonably conclude that I am in 40’s.
But Sex Toys?
So what does any of this have to do with comic that has sunk a thousand ships and let to the creation of various moral bodies dedicated to condemning me on the Internet and radio shows? In frame 4 there is mention of some sex toys. It’s there for shock value and I wanted to work it into the story line because I am sleep deprived. It also got me to thinking, if EVERYTHING becomes a smart device, and is Internet-enabled with sensors and chips, that means no one can trust anything, not even their sex toys. You’ll need to worry if they have been talking to each other about your, uh, habits. No more privacy. Even your sex toys know how awful you are — and worse, they’ll talk to each other about how frequently you use them (you filthy pervert) and with whom, and why insufficient use of alcohol wipes is still an issue.
Well, on that note, let’s try and relax, go to sleep knowing that iPad or smart thingy next to you probably knows more about you than your significant other. Chances are your play with it more often that your significant other too. You all make me sick.
Exuberantly achy and parsimonious in handing out wisdom,
White Plum Asanga, Buddhist Rebel Druker