} My apologies, supplicant. It seems you weren't quite up to the level of
} subtle reference in my replies. Let's take a look at some of the
} highlights, shall we?
} For example, you asked the following question:
} } Almighty Oracle, who understands all the laws applicable to filing
} } patents in ninety-seven countries, who could have invented everything
} } that ever was invented had you not been too busy chilling out, tell
} } me this:
} } I've recently invented a great perpetual motion device that *actually
} } works*. I'm sure you already know how it works, so I won't bore you
} } with the details. But it's the real McCoy.
} } Problem is, the patent office refuse to let me register it, because
} } they believe it's not possible (they don't realise it's possible to
} } 'bend' the laws of thermodynamics a little).
} } What can I do to protect my idea?
} And I replied:
} > you suck
} Now, while you may have thought this was merely the work of some
} hotmail-crazed queue-drainer, it was in fact a reference to that unsung
} genius of modern times, Mr Dyson, who invented an entirely new form of
} vacuum cleaner using techniques which many believed would not work.
} "A vacuum cleaner without a bag?" they cried. "It'll never work." But
} by sheer perseverance and force of personality he built a mighty
} industry on that new vacuum cleaner, and is a very rich man today.
} Persevere, be strong, and the patent office will accept your
} Then you asked:
} } Oracle most hoopy, who can interpret any language without the aid of
} } a babel fish, and who needs no guide, I have a question for you.
} } What's the *real* answer to life, the universe, and everything?
} And I replied:
} Again, a simpler querant might think they had been fobbed off with a
} null answer, but someone as incisive as yourself should have noticed
} that this was a reference to the teachings of Mikhail Lukin, the
} reclusive Russian seer and mystic. He holds that the true secret to
} life, the universe and everything can be perceived only through silence
} and stillness, since before the beginning of the universe there was
} only infinite peace and calm.
} In fact he's not entirely right, but this *is* the closest any human
} has ever got to the truth of these things, so I was expecting you to
} meet him and listen to his teachings and apply your mind to them so
} that you might make the necessary breakthrough and bring insight to the
} Unfortunately it's a bit late now, since he was run over trying to
} cross a busy Moscow street. Still, I'm sure another Russian mystic will
} be along in a millenium or so.
} Let's see, by the time your next question came you were clearly
} beginning to get irate, since your grovel was well below par. You
} } Coolish Oracle,
} } Instruct me in the ways of knowledge, enlighten my path, tell me the
} } truth: who shot JFK?
} And I replied:
} > me. haha
} Witless? Unintelligible? As you put it, 'Crap'? I think not.
} Ho Ling Me, a Vietnamese agent working for the CIA was, in fact the
} second gunman that fateful day. And the irony that caused me to laugh
} bitterly? I would have thought it would be simple, even for someone as
} clearly obtuse as you. I refer you to the yearbook for Green Springs
} High School, in which Mr Me was jokingly described as 'Most likely to
} become a CIA assassin and gun down the president'. Truth, as they say,
} is stranger than fiction.
} So you see, supplicant, the problem is not that you have been given
} poor answers, but that you have been given the greatest answers of all,
} but have failed to comprehend them. From now on you will receive
} answers suited to more mediocre supplicants. Top 10 lists will fill
} your mailbox. You will receive answers in the form of a dialogue
} between Lisa and Og, written in the style of Quentin Tarantino. You
} will have your fill of in-jokes, recycled rec.humor.funny postings and
} pastiches of popular TV shows and films.
} And yet... you will always feel that by missing out on your chance to
} receive unexpurgated the full wisdom of the Oracle you have missed out
} on a fuller, richer life. You will evermore prowl the depths of
} rec.humor.oracle.d, hoping to rediscover what it was you lost, but in
} vain. I offered you wisdom, and you turned it away.
} You owe the Oracle.