Saturday, May 12, 2007

post 11: I'm sorry I lied to you, Gemini

What if there were a syndicated newspaper astrologer who was absolutely convinced of the truth of his craft, but who, out of sheer sloth, routinely made up the advice and predictions offered in his daily horoscope? Given the difficulty of producing an accurate, useful, and tactful forecast for each of the twelve astrological signs on a daily basis, the temptation to offer platitudes spiced with bogus predictions instead of genuine forecasts based on sound astrology could easily prove too much to bear, especially since there are no government agencies or professional organizations to enforce standards in the field. However, given this individual's unwavering conviction in the truth of astrology itself, it seems possible that his own conscience might eventually catch up with him. If at some point he took the time go back and calculate accurate forecasts for the previous weeks and months, he would probably see that the advice he had been offering in his horoscopes was not only misleading, but in some cases so contrary to the real astrological forecasts as to be positively dangerous and destructive. How could he begin to make amends?

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Monday, May 7, 2007

post 10: brain cell

What if each person on earth lived in a tiny cell furnished with nothing more than a toilet, feeding tube, oxygen vent, web-cam & Internet access? And what if each person's right to a continued supply of oxygen were predicated on the amount of traffic that his or her personal website could generate? If an individual's website didn't receive more than a hundred unique visitors per day, his or her cell would have the oxygen sucked out of it, leading to a dramatic real-time death on the Internet. Of course this spectacle would be likely to draw more visitors to one's personal website, but the spike in hits would come too late. It would be as if the rest of the human race were saying: We didn't find you interesting enough to keep you alive, but your public death in a vacuum chamber is something we'll take time to see.

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Friday, May 4, 2007

post 9: nice package

What if the FDA, in an attempt to combat obesity, mandated that the packaging for all food products must not only list its calorie content, but also compel the consumer to expend an equal number of calories just to open the package?

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Wednesday, May 2, 2007

post 8: "all your oil are belong to bugs"

What if a team of researchers developed a strain of bacteria that could survive underground and feed on petroleum, thus rendering it useless as a fuel source? What if, in the interests of neutralizing part or all of the world’s petroleum supply, someone introduced this new bacterium into the vast underground deposits of petroleum in the Middle East, Africa, the Americas, and other oil-rich regions of the world?

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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

post 7: "Stop, OK?"

What if there were a country so polite that all street and highway signs were framed as suggestions rather than commands? What if even those signs that were meant to communicate simple facts such as the distance to the nearest city or the presence of falling rocks or other road hazards hedged their declarations with tag-questions and words like "maybe" and "might" so as not to come off as too pushy? What if people from this country became so accustomed to the deferent style of their own street signs that they found themselves insulted, and sometimes even enraged, by the more direct and authoritative language of signs in other countries?

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