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Best of Internet Oracularities #1076-1100

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1076-1100, 1088-09, 1085-08, 1088-01, 1089-03, 1087-01, 1081-09, 1085-10, 1091-10, 1092-03


Best of Internet Oracularities #1076-1100    (3.9 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: 13 Jul 1999 09:03:27 -0500

Oracularities are the distilled wisdom and sagacity of the Internet
Oracle, as incarnated in its many anonymous e-mail participants.  This
collection has been compiled from the regular Oracularities postings #1076
through #1100 and contains the Oracularities rated by its readers
as among the funniest.

To find out more about the Internet Oracle, send mail to
oracle@cs.indiana.edu with the word "help" in the subject line to receive
the Oracle helpfile.

The regular Oracularities postings can be found in the Usenet newsgroup
rec.humor.oracle.  Open discussion about the Internet Oracle occurs in
the newsgroup rec.humor.oracle.d.  If your site doesn't carry these
newsgroups, contact your news administrator about starting them, or
see the Oracle helpfile about subscribing to the Oracularities e-mail
distribution list.


1088-09    (725oG dist, 4.2 mean)
Selected-By: Mark Lawrence <lawrence.4@osu.edu>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

>

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
} Over many an illiterate tellme, as my mailbox overran --
} While I nodded, nearing slumber, suddenly came something dumber,
} As of email sent from someone with a short attention span.
} "'Tis some supplicant," I muttered, "who hit 'send' without a plan --
} It belongs in my trash can."
}
} Ah, distinctly then I wondered if perhaps I might have blundered,
} When I eloquently thundered thoughts on my life's master plan.
} "Lisa, honey, I must answer!  I've no time to be a dancer!
} What would happen to the world without me?  Ponder if you can!"
} Then she tearily departed, leaving me a lonely man,
} Lonely with my warm beer can.
}
} So I stared at this small email, thinking of my ticked-off female,
} Wondering if there was true meaning or some hidden secret plan.
} "True," said I, "my work is vital, but this little oversight'll
} Not be missed if I just pitch it like a note from Ed McMahon!
} Pitch it! Yes, then dance with Lisa to the waltzes of Chopin!
} Pitch it! Yes, I surely can!"
}
} Presently my soul grew queasy, possibly from all the greasy
} Pizza I had ordered from the place with the delivery van,
} Possibly from realizing that in fact, despite its sizing,
} This was in fact a question sent to me by some adoring fan.
} Duty called.  I double-clicked, then took a quick and cursive scan --
} Nothing there but "Greater than".
}
} Quickly to the keyboard turning, foreboding (or pizza) burning,
} I began to beat my head against the screen of cool cyan.
} "Surely," said I, "surely this sucks worse than Stephen Wright or
} woodchucks!
} What I wouldn't give to have a question from a fake caveman!
} Fighting fish or Infocom or lyrics from Duran Duran --
} Anything but 'Greater than'!"
}
} But the tellme, blinking dumbly, offered nothing to my numbly
} Churning brain; I sat there stewing like "The Thinker" by Rodin.
} "Cursed pointy little symbol!" I cried, with leap both lithe and
} nimble, "I will wrest your message from you!" Then the match of wits
} began; Staring at the screen until my eyeballs felt like raisin bran --
} Quoth the tellme, "Greater than."
}
} So I sat engaged in guessing what this character's depressing
} pixels meant, all robed in white -- perhaps a binary Ku Klux Klan?
} A flock of geese? A smiley's beard? A pointer to an object weird?
} A fairy sidekick playing Tinkerbell to someone's Peter Pan?
} Alas! My muse was at the level of a punk with a spray can.
} Quoth the tellme, "Greater than."
}
} "Symbol," said I, "of pure evil! Like some cranial boll weevil,
} You will sap my brain and make me late by an enormous span!
} Lisa will refuse romancing if I miss our date for dancing
} (Even now I'll have to call for flowers on installment plan)!
} Yield, you scum, or she'll come at me with a heavy frying pan!"
} Quoth the tellme, "Greater than."
}
} Suddenly a thought most novel came to me -- there was no grovel!
} How could I forget my right to zot this clown to Kazakhstan?
} But as I raised my staff in fury, a vision came of Arthur Murray
} And Lisa learning waltzes there with some carnationed ladies' man.
} "I'll be back," I told the tellme, "to reveal my battle plan.
} Then we'll see who's 'Greater than'!"
}
} So the tellme, dumb, unthinking, still is blinking, still is blinking,
} Waiting for the time when that proverbial stuff will hit the fan.
} And with luck that same null question soon will lead to my digestion
} When I tell the tale of victory wrapped up tighter than Saran --
} But not before some dancing, sex, and zotting -- proving no one can
} Be greater than the Oracle, man.


1085-08    (05fvm dist, 4.0 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Which is worse? X or Y?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Y, by a mile. Let's face it:
}
} * You won't find any buried treasure at the spot marked Y.
} * Brand X may be second best, but Brand Y doesn't even rate a mention.
} * Nobody now remembers Malcolm Y.
} * Y-rays don't even penetrate glass.
} * Agents Mulder and Scully never bothered looking into the Y-Files.
} * Y Windows and Java Y are platform-independent in the sense that they
}   don't run on any platform.
} * Mutant Alien Body Snatchers from Planet Y would have been met with
}   derision in the fifties.
} * No books have been written about disaffected Generation Y youngsters.
} * Y500 directories, which list only first names and inside leg
}   measurements, are generally not considered to be very useful.
} * Nobody is going to visit your Website to view your YYY-rated JPEGs.
} * Along with the Fantastic Fourteen, the Incredible Bulk and the Mighty
}   Sore, the Y-Men were one of Marvel's less successful creations.
}
} You owe the Oracle a Z chromosome.


1088-01    (24hur dist, 4.0 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> When is Super Model Heidi Klum going to ask me to marry her?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Heh heh heh... that'll be the day.
} +----------------------------------------------------------------------+
} |  TOP STORIES  |         ###   ##  #####  ## ## ##  #######           |
} |  --- -------  |         ####  ##  ##     ## ## ##  ##                |
} |               |         ## ## ##  ####   ## ## ##  #######           |
} | POPE REPORTS: |         ##  ####  ##     ########       ##           |
} |    HELL IS    |         ##   ###  #####   ######   #######           |
} | COOLING DOWN! |------------------------------------------------------|
} |   Story, A1   |                                                      |
} |               |    MASS FLYING PIG SIGHTING IN WASHINGTON, D.C.      |
} |   DAN QUAYLE  |                                                      |
} | WINS LANDSLIDE| Thousands of people claim to have a seen a pig       |
} |  PRESIDENTIAL | soaring over Washington D.C. on Monday.              |
} |    ELECTION   |                                                      |
} |   Story, A2   | "We estimate that the pig flew between 500 and 800   |
} |               | feet above the ground," said Lionel Dean of the D.C. |
} | O.J. SIMPSON  | Park Service.  "It flew over Washington for a period |
} |   CONFESSES   | of about 15 minutes before heading out over the At-  |
} |   Story, A4   | lantic Ocean.  We believe it was a boar, and it ap-  |
} |               | parently had wings.  Other than that no one was able |
} |  KLUM: WILL   | to make a positive I.D. on the pig.  It could be my  |
} |  SHE MARRY?   | pig, it could be anybody's pig."                     |
} |  Story, A1    |                                                      |
} |---------------+ "Unbelievable.  [Expletive] unbelievable."  This was |
} | the reaction of Darren Lytefoot, 26, a Washington resident.  "I was  |
} | just chilling out on the mall, you know, and I looked up and there   |
} | was this pig up there in the sky.  So of course I thought I was      |
} | having, like, an acid flashback... but when it didn't mutate into a  |
} | giant lizard or anything then I knew it had to be real."             |
} |                                                                      |
} | Skeptics have long dismissed reports of flying-pig sightings as the  |
} | work of cranks and crackpots.  But Monday's event was witnessed by   |
} | about 10,000 people in D.C., according to a Park Service estimate.   |
} | In fact, one of those spectators was president-elect J. Danforth     |
} | Quayle.                                                              |
} |                                                                      |
} | "It was incredible," said Quayle to a bustling crowd of reporters at |
} | a press conference held the day after the event.  "Most incredible of|
} | all because it happened here, right here, in our capital's nation,   |
} | and I was able to see it all from the White House lawn.  When our    |
} | children look back at tomorrow, uh, back from tomorrow, I only hope  |
} | that they will see this flying-pig event as it occured today, or     |
} | yesterday, and remember that it happened right here, on my lawn."    |
} |                                                                      |
} | Some have spectulated that this new trend could spell doom for the   |
} | ham industry, however.                                               |
} |                                                                      |
} |               POPE REPORTS: HELL IS COOLING OFF                      |
} |                                                                      |
} | Pope John Paul III shocked the Catholic world when he announced on   |
} | Monday that hell is, in fact, cooling off.  The Pope's report con-   |
} | cluded that hell's temperature, estimated at a torturous 1100 degrees|
} | during biblical times, has since decreased to a nearly-tolerable 215 |
} | degrees.                                                             |
} |                                                                      |
} | "I'm as surprised as anyone," remarked Richard Boyer, a pastor at    |
} | Third Presbyterian Church in Norfolk, Virginia.  "I couldn't believe |
} | it when I first heard.  No more fire and brimstone?  No more flaming |
} | torment?  If people start to think of eternal damnation like an      |
} | extended vacation in Barbados, we're all in for trouble."            |
} |                                                                      |
} | The Pope held a conference on Wednesday to try to quell the public   |
} | uncertainty that followed his announcement.                          |
} |                                                                      |
} | "There are processes at work here that we're only just beginning to  |
} | understand," he explained.  "To present a layman's example: most     |
} | people know that when a lot of people enter a cool room, the room    |
} | heats up.  Well, the reverse happens when a lot of people enter an   |
} | area where the temperature is well above body temperature, as in the |
} | passage of the sinful into the underworld.  Of course, a single      |
} | damned soul hardly makes a difference, but when you're talking about |
} | billions upon billions of banished humans over six millenia or so,   |
} | even the searing flames of hellfire begin to fade.  This is one of   |
} | the many factors contributing to what we have dubbed the Netherworld |
} | Cooling Effect."                                                     |
} |                                                                      |
} | Regular church attendee Joyce Johnson, a retired supermarket worker, |
} | expressed disappointment in reaction to the news.  "215 degrees?     |
} | That's not enough to cook a steak!  I've been going to church every  |
} | week for the last 76 years just to avoid a mild sunburn in the after-|
} | life?  What a crock!"                                                |
} |                                                                      |
} | In other news, _Playboy_ recently reported the highest sales in      |
} | company history.  (See Story, A6)                                    |
} |                                                                      |
} |         SUPERMODEL HEIDI KLUM ANNOUNCES MARRIAGE DECISION            |
} |                                                                      |
} | In a public announcement Tuesday, supermodel Heidi Klum reaffirmed   |
} | that, despite rumors to the contrary, she definitely will not marry  |
} | supplicant J. R. Quentin.                                            |
} |                                                                      |
} | Some of those present at the announcement said they were disappoint- |
} | ed.  Even though Klum has previously declined Quentin's long-standing|
} | proposal of marriage, there was speculation that she might have      |
} | changed her mind. "I thought, 'Heidi and J.R.?'" said one spectator, |
} | "hey, weirder things have happened."  He paused.  "On second thought,|
} | maybe they haven't."                                                 |
} |                                                                      |
} | The crowd was hushed as Klum solemnly explained that she has "does   |
} | not intend to marry J. R. Quentin, ever."                            |
} |                                                                      |
} | "Now, I don't want people to start to think that I'm either frigid or|
} | that I can't settle down," she continued.  "I'm not opposed to       |
} | marriage.  I just don't want to marry this one particular guy."      |
} |                                                                      |
} | "I've gotten letters from fans, most of them college-age males, I    |
} | think, who say, Heidi, why won't you marry him, he deserves a shot,  |
} | you have to look past physical appearance, don't be so shallow, and  |
} | so on and so on.  Look, guys, I have nothing against short, balding  |
} | computer-science majors.  But he's acne-ridden, he's overweight, he  |
} | drools, and he's addicted to some humor service on the Internet.  I  |
} | mean, I don't want to have to compete with a computer for the atten- |
} | tion of my husband, you know?"                                       |
} |                                                                      |
} | "And, added to that, he's just not very nice.  Did you know--he never|
} | even asked me IF we were going to get married, he just asked WHEN.   |
} | That's a little presumptuous, don't you think?  And he happens to be |
} | really bad at giving compliments.  Well, actually, scratch that, he  |
} | COULD be really good at giving compliments, but I wouldn't know,     |
} | because he never gives any."                                         |
} |                                                                      |
} | "So, I just wanted to say that I appreciate all the support and all  |
} | the advice my fans have given me, but I have no plans to marry him,  |
} | now or any time in the future."                                      |
} |                                                                      |
} | After leaving the room for a few minutes, Klum returned for one final|
} | comment.                                                             |
} |                                                                      |
} | "Oh, and I know I said it would be a cold day in hell when I would   |
} | marry J.R., but I was speaking figuratively."                        |
} +----------------------------------------------------------------------+


1089-03    (348rr dist, 4.0 mean)
Selected-By: Christophe <xof@chanticleer.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Heya, omniscient-type dude.
>
> I've chatting with your various incarnations, and yeah -- it's fun. But
> sometimes... man, you get some idiots in there! How can I make sure the
> person who gets my mail doesn't give me a serious answer? Oh, and it'd
> be nice if they didn't quote back my question when they replied...
>
> So is there a secret code I can put in the Subject: line or something,
> to make sure my question only gets to people who are at least
> semi-clueful? Thanks, Orrie -- I knew I could count on you!

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} What's this? You want a serious answer to your question "How can I make
} sure I don't get a serious answer"? Are you trying to trap the Oracle,
} you creepy little supplicant person you? Well, I'll fix your little red
} wagon.
}
} ALARM! ALARM! Calling the Paradox Police!
}
} <stomp stomp stomp stomp stomp stomp stomp stomp stomp STOMP STOMP
} STOMP> PARADOX POLICE REPORTING, SAH!
}
} Oracle: Thank you for coming so promptly. Now ...
}
} Kurt:   Actually, we're not the Paradox Police and we're not reporting.
}
} Wolfie: But please bear in mind that my partner lies all the time.
}
} Kurt:   I do not!
}
} Wolfie: Whereas I lie exactly 50% of the time. We are the Paradox
}         Police, but we're not reporting.
}
} Kurt:   Ah, but hang on, you just made three statements. If you lie
}         exactly 50% of the time, one must be a half-truth.
}
} Wolfie: I did not make three statements.
}
} Kurt:   Did too!
}
} Wolfie: Did not! You said I did, so I can't have done.
}
} Kurt:   Bummer! Caught out again.
}
} Oracle: If I might interrupt this fascinating discourse ...
}
} Kurt:   Wait, I've got it. You did say we weren't the Paradox Police,
}         didn't you?
}
} Wolfie: Correct - I said we were.
}
} Kurt:   And that we definitely were reporting.
}
} Wolfie: No, I said we were, but I'm lying now.
}
} Kurt:   Therefore, logically, your statement about lying exactly 50%
}         of the time ...
}
} Wolfie: ... Could have been a lie.
}
} Kurt:   Damn!
}
} Oracle: Gentlemen ...
}
} Kurt:   Okay, this one's really going to work. You definitely lie
}         sometimes.
}
} Wolfie: I am obliged to tell the truth for an undisclosed part of the
}         time, I'll grant you that.
}
} Kurt:   So if I were to ask you if we're the Paradox Police, and then I
}         repeat your answer verbatim ...
}
} Wolfie: Ah, I can see where this is heading ...
}
} Kurt:   ... Then I can force you into being a full-time liar, like I am
}         not! Ahah! Gotcha, ya little squirt!
}
} Wolfie: Not necessarily ...
}
} Kurt:   Have too! Have too! Admit it!
}
} Wolfie: ... Since this scenario would require you to be telling the
}         truth when you say you're going to repeat everything I say.
}
} Kurt:   Damn! Blast! I hate you!
}
} Wolfie: He loves me really.
}
} Oracle: Yes thank you, gentlemen, I am truly enjoying your double act
}         and at least one of these statements is false. Now, could you
}         turn your attention to this email from a supplicant?
}
} Wolfie: Certainly! Could you repeat it for us?
}
} Oracle: That's a very tempting suggestion, but just read it for now.
}
} Kurt:   Sure thing! There's nothing I like better than reading
}         paradoxical email messages ...
}
} Wolfie: ... Unless it be a ham sandwich ...
}
} Kurt:   ... Because, obviously, a ham sandwich is better than nothing.
}         Hmm, this is a nasty one ...
}
} Wolfie: Is there such a secret code, by the way?
}
} Oracle: Yes, but I can't tell it to you, otherwise it wouldn't be
}         secret.
}
} Wolfie: There are no flies on you.
}
} Kurt:   Nobody's smarter than the Oracle.
}
} Wolfie: Good point! Well, Sir, there's your solution.
}
} Oracle: What?
}
} Wolfie: The supplicant shouldn't be asking you, he should ask nobody,
}         since nobody is a higher authority than yourself.
}
} Oracle: You mean, like, he should ask his question in an empty room?
}
} Kurt:   Exactly. Or he could ask Al Gore, who's a nobody in my book.
}
} Oracle: Sounds good to me. But isn't some kind of punishment in order?
}         He did try to trap me, after all.
}
} Kurt:   Absolutely not!
}
} Wolfie: As my partner says, absolutely!
}
} Oracle: How about if I ZOT him on some day between today and Saturday
}         next, but don't tell him which day so it'll come as a surprise?
}
} Kurt:   Ah no, that won't work.
}
} Oracle: It won't?
}
} Kurt:   No. Everybody thinks there's no paradox there, but in fact
}         there is.
}
} Wolfie: Hang on, if everybody thinks there's no paradox, then you do
}         too.
}
} Kurt:   Good point. Okay, everybody thinks there's no paradox there,
}         but Al Gore knows there is. Because, as Al Gore will tell you,
}         if Saturday arrives and the supplicant still hasn't been
}         ZOTted, he'll be expecting it then and it won't be a surprise.
}
} Wolfie: Therefore he knows you won't ZOT him Saturday, so Friday is the
}         last day you can ZOT him and surprise him.
}
} Kurt:   But when Friday arrives and he still hasn't been ZOTted ...
}
} Wolfie: You can see the problem, can't you? There's no way you can ZOT
}         him at any time and surprise him.
}
} Kurt:   So he's perfectly safe.
}
}                         <<<<<<<< ZOT! >>>>>>>>
}
} Oracle: What do you think? Was he surprised?
}
} Wolfie: Absolutely.
}
} Kurt:   Not in the least.
}
} Wolfie: Oh, shut up.
}
} Kurt:   Ham sandwich, anyone?


1087-01    (36gls dist, 3.9 mean)
Selected-By: Kirsten Chevalier <mchevalier@WELLESLEY.EDU>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> What is dielectric materialism?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Dielectric materialism is, as those of us in the know like to say,
} the bastard child of quantitative metathesis and corroborative nuclear
} scaling theory.  Ha ha ha!  Get it?
}
} <Pause.>
}
} I see.  Well, supplicant, perhaps I ought to explain it this way:
}
} Pretend you have an egg.  The egg represents Truth and Value.  Now,
} pretend you have a Teflon-coated frying pan.  The pan represents
} reality, the Teflon represents self-recognition, and the handle
} represents the possibility of God.  Admittedly, the handle is
} simultaneously extant and non-extant, which creates problems when
} flipping Truth out of Reality and frying Value, but we'll get to that
} when we do.
}
} Now we put Reality onto the Furnace of the Universe, and apply Truth
} to it. Separated by Self-recognition and Reality from the Universe,
} Truth bubbles only slightly, signifying an indirect and presently
} indeterminate change in its capacity to exist.  Now, using God we
} remove Reality briefly from the Universe, and flip Truth into Value,
} which will now begin bubbling more loudly.  As Self-recognition
} has probably worn away by this point (as Reality was quite cheap,
} having been bought at Wal-Mart for $4.85), Value is applied diectly
} to Reality, resulting in flames and loud spurts of Value and Truth
} out of Reality and directly onto the Universe, which loud fizzing
} begins, spurting flaming droplets of Truth and Reality onto God,
} and causing the Unmoved Mover wielding Reality (by way of God)
} to shriek in unbelieveable pain while the reast of Truth and Value
} burns into the Charcoal of Damnation in the middle of a Reality devoid
} of Self-recognition.
}
} Now the Unmoved Mover will probably lose his or her grip on God and
} drop Him on the floor, splattering Truth, etc., everywhere, coating
} the Kitchen of Redemption in Damnation, and restoring the Universe
} and its vicinity to its original state of Chaos.
}
} This process, which you can see demonstrated nearly daily in the
} rooms of Bachelors of Clumsiness everywhere in the world, is often
} referred to as dielectric materialism.
}
} You owe the Oracle some scrambled Truth, or perhaps some Value
} sunny-side up.


1081-09    (24nlo dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: MCHEVALIER@WELLESLEY.EDU

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Oh, wise Oracle, who knows how to debug an INTERCAL program,
>
> Why is my compiler crashing while processing the following fragment?
>
> while (wood)
> {
>       woodchuck.chuck (wood);
> }

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Try patching it with this:
}
} # Got a question Monday and my heart stood still
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck);
}
} # A code programming question from a guy named Phil
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck);
}
} ;yeah(my.heart.stood.still)
} ;yeah(his.name.was.Phil)
} ;yeah(his.question.made.me.ill)
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck)
}
} # It was a woodchuck question in a thin disguise
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck)
}
} # The fact that I will <*ZOT*> him should be no surprise
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck)
}
} ;yeah(a.thin.disguise)
} ;yeah(a.<*ZOT*>'s.your.prize)
} ;yeah(better.shield.your.eyes)
}
} do (do woodchuck.chuck) do (do chuck.chuck)
} ----
} There. NOW try compiling it. Just be sure to wear a welder's shield and
} a lead apron.
}
} You owe the Oracle a copy of "CP/M for Dummies."


1085-10    (44imp dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Oracle most wise,
>
> How did you meet Lisa?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} I, the Oracle, the immortal son of Zeus and Leda, imbued with the
} wisdom of Artemis, lived the life of hermits in a tower made of ivory
} on the highest peak of Mt. Olympus. Manna poured from the fountains in
} the courtyard, ambrosia rained like golden dew from the olive groves.
} Those who scaled Olympus's mighty peaks to seek his advice were imbued
} with much awe and amazement at such extravagance, a true gift belonging
} to one whose grace must surely shine brightly with the gods.
}
} But alas, the Oracle grew lonely. Nights were cold with no source of
} warmth beside him in his bed of spun gold and goose down. Days were
} dark, even on the brightest of days, with no companion to light his
} isolated soul.  The Oracle grew hardened, and cold. So Aphrodite
} in pity cried tears into the river Styx, and from the teardrops
} burst fire, and from the fire was forged woman. And the woman was
} called Lisa.
}
} The beauty which radiated from this glorious creation made the Oracle
} weep tears of joy. Her hair was long and brown like the reeds of
} Crimea, her eyes deep blue like the pale depths of the river Lethe,
} her bosoms ample like...well, they were ample. And her heart burned
} like a furnace for the Oracle alone. Their companionship brought the
} Oracle many days of unadulterated bliss.
}
} But Aphrodite, the mother of such glorious a creation, became jealous
} of her beauty. Zeus, father of the Oracle, was mad with envy because
} such a creation could not be his. So the Oracle was cast down into the
} depths of Indiana, and Zeus did enslave Lisa in his palace in Olympus.
}
} The Oracle was enraged by his fate. Chained was he to a computer
} terminal, forced was he to answer the basest questions of the
} adolescent populace. All without the beautious creature to which
} he had given half his soul.  So the Oracle brought forth and blew
} his Horn of Valhalla, and summoned he forth all of the beats of the
} New World, and commanded them together in a mighty army to storm
} Olympus and take his mate back by force. From on high, Zeus hailed
} lightning down upon them, but alas, the Oracle's Shield of Mighty
} Wisdom deflected the bolts harmlessly, and the army didst march on.
}
} And lo, a battle didst ensue between the mightiest valkyries of Olympus
} and the beasts of the New World. The Oracle, armed with his Sword of
} Mightiest Intelligence, battled and subdued his godly father and the
} enslaver of his mate, and cast was Zeus down into the nether regions.
} The chains were cast off the lovely Lisa, and with all the beasts of
} the New World, returned they to the depths of Indiana, never again
} to partake of the fickle grace of those who called themselves gods.
} From then on, the Oracle bartered his endless wisdom in exchange for
} lavish material goods and services.  Built he a pallatial compound,
} and stocked it full of neat looking stuff. And both Oracle and Lisa
} live in bliss, and shall for all eternity...
}
} Naah, I'm just pulling your leg. I met her at a University of Delphi
} kegger.
}
} You owe the Oracle a 12-pack of manna.


1091-10    (26hrl dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: MCHEVALIER@WELLESLEY.EDU

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Oracle, who knows what will be,
>
> What will happen in the nineteenth century?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} I really got to do something about speeding up the queue.


1092-03    (8aeaC dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: Otis Viles <cierhart@ic.net>

The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was:

> Why are schools all over the country now threating any student that
> doesn't act "mainstream" with expulsion, suspension, if they don't stop
> expressing their opinions, dressing the way they want to, etc. just
> because of what happened in Colorado?  Is suppression of freedom of
> expression and freedom of speech and freedom of thought really the
> solution?
>
> -Justin

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Lousy grovel, Supplicant Justin, but an excellent question.
}
} Well, it's *a* solution, but it's certainly not *the* solution.
} It has such appeal because it's a simple answer to a complex problem,
} and that seems to be our stock-in-trade as a culture. We never like
} to think deeply about anything when we can come up with some idiot,
} half-baked sound-byte scheme that will sound good in the mouths of
} politicians and others having responsibility for dealing with complex
} problems, but who are too lazy and stupid to do so effectively, and
} it's convincing to people who have never had to reflect seriously
} upon anything more weighty than what to watch on TV tonight (which
} means probably 90% of us).
}
} This scheme doesn't even make sense if you think about it: If you
} force them to shut up and dress and act like everybody else, you will
} a) cheese them off even more, thereby making those who are already
} inclined towards violence even more so, and b) make them harder to
} identify, and therefore to keep track of. It's not the wrongos who
} are immediately identifiable as wrongos that you have to worry about:
} it's the ones who don't appear to differ in any significant way from
} everyone else that are going to do the really nasty stuff, because
} no one is keeping tabs on them.
}
} Unfortunately, what happened in Colorado will continue to happen
} at periodic intervals until it gets old, just as shooting up post
} offices did, and shooting up fast-food joints did before that.
} And when shooting up high schools gets old, the whackos among us will
} simply come up with some new form of mass slaughter that will keep
} the news media intrigued (which is really what this is all about:
} people will keep on doing this as long as the news media continues to
} give it such heavy coverage, and they'll continue to cover it heavily
} as long as we keep watching it).
}
} There's probably only one real solution to this problem: we have
} to do a really hard re-evaluation and re-think of our culture.
} We worship violence, we glorify it, we recommend it as the solution
} to all problems. We are also, as individuals and as a society,
} incredibly self-centered, each of us regarding ourselves as the only
} being on the face of the planet that has any rights, and everyone
} else can simply go **** themselves. Until we chuck all that infantile
} Wild West crap and start growing up and acting like a nation of adults
} instead of one of spoiled self-absorbed brats (and this applies *all*
} across the board, not just to adolescents: there are things going on
} routinely in corporate board rooms and legislative bodies all across
} America that are in their own way just as bad as, or even worse than,
} what happened in Colorado), then we will continue to get sociopathic
} vermin who decide that being dissed is sufficient reason for blowing
} large numbers of human beings into the Next World, and that is what
} we will deserve.
}
} I apologize for not being funny, but yours struck me as a serious
} question that deserved a serious answer.
}
} You owe the Oracle a promise that your generation will at least try
} to deal with our problems in a more mature and constructive way than
} did mine, or my parents', for that manner.


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