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Internet Oracularities #1071

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1071, 1071-01, 1071-02, 1071-03, 1071-04, 1071-05, 1071-06, 1071-07, 1071-08, 1071-09, 1071-10


Internet Oracularities #1071    (72 votes, 3.2 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Wed, 13 Jan 1999 10:12:02 -0500 (EST)

To find out all about the Internet Oracle, including how to participate,
send mail to oracle@cs.indiana.edu with the word "help" in the subject
line.

Let us know what you like!  Send your ratings of these 10 Oracularities
on an integer scale of 1 ("very poor") to 5 ("very good") with the
volume number to oracle-vote@cs.indiana.edu (probably just reply to this
message).  For example:
   1071
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

1071  72 votes 5bpm9 3rnh2 45bum 2nsf4 17muc 8uha7 3bjof 3jgke 7qq94 5jxb4
1071  3.2 mean  3.3   2.8   3.8   2.9   3.6   2.7   3.5   3.3   2.7   2.9


1071-01    (5bpm9 dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: Darkmage <DAVIS@wehi.edu.au>

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

> Oh Oracle most wise,tell me about internet sharing or modem sharing

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

}    DO NOT SHARE MODEMS!
}
}    Sharing modems is a exceptionally risky behavior engaged in by those
}    with advanced Internet habits. Modem sharing is a one way path to
}    hell, spam and Make Lots of Money (MLM). You will lose your ISP
}    connection and be a person of no account if you share modems.
}
}    MLM often spreads among people who share modems. If you know
}    misguided people who use modems on a regular basis (such as people
}    with jobs or Quake I,II or III), make sure they use and initialize
}    their modems properly. Modems should be used only under a reputable
}    sysop's terms of agreement and should never be shared.  Many modem
}    sharers face a short, bleak future -- marred by acne, vitamin D
}    deficiency, or an obsession with Star Wars/Trek -- and modem use
}    increases their risk of MLM.  If you talk with a person about
}    modem sharing, suggest ways to say no to the Internet;
}
}      * "I just don't want to surf the Internet!"
}      * "When I use the Internet, I don't feel in control. I don't like
}         that feeling."
}      * "I don't want to lose my job. WWW and serving fries don't mix."
}      * "I love my social life. Modems can kill it."
}      * "I want to go to college. I can't risk getting hooked on the
}         Internet."
}      * "I want to be popular. `Net usage will make me a pocket-protector
}         wearing, propeller-headed dork."
}      * "I want to join the Air Force. Modem abuse could blow my chances
}         of getting to fly endless circles over No-Fly zones in
}         God-forsaken corners of the world."
}
}    [ Aside to Oracle Readers;
}
}    Ask the young people you talk with to think of their own ways to say
}    no to Internet and practice them with you.  If you think a young
}    person you know has a modem problem, get professional help now.
}    Contact their mother, a local library, or some Neo-Luddites to find
}    out who can help you in your community. Call the 24-hour hotline of
}    the Lusers Against Modem Excess Revolt Society  (1-800-555-D`OH) to
}    find out where you can get help in your area. ]
}
}    Good Luck.
}
}     You owe the Oracle an additional T1 line.


1071-02    (3rnh2 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: "Forbes, Michael Scott (Scott)" <trans@lucent.com>

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

> I was recently out with the lads doing some Coal mining for a
> laugh, but I have since taken ill and have similar symptoms to
> bronchitis.......
>
> Could it be that I am suffering from
> Pneumonoultramicroscopicvolcanoconiosis?
> Or just a cough?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You would be lucky if it were either, but no, this is far more
} insidious.  It is the first stage of a viral disease known as
} Cavernus Colossus.  It starts out simply, with a cough, but after
} the initial incubation period, you will awaken near a building by
} a stream.  The coughs will get more intense accompanied by sneezes
} which sound like 'XYZZY!' and 'PLUGH!'  From there it gets worse,
} you will have times when you feel as if you are back in those coal
} mines, in a maze of twisty little passages, all alike.  Eventually,
} you will find yourselve pursued by dwarves with nasty knives, and
} from there on in, it just gets more disorienting.  The only real cure
} is snake venom, but I'm afraid your canary will drive the snake away
} before you can collect.  You are, in effect, doomed.
}
} You owe the Oracle a huge emerald the size of a plover's egg.


1071-03    (45bum dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: Rich McGee <rmcgee@csusb.edu>

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

> O wondrous Oracle, who understands even the incomprehensible,
>
> Is it true that men used to adhere to "women and children first" so
> that they themselves could at least enjoy a few moments of peace before
> they died?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You have it in one, supplicant. Indeed, it was not unknown for men
} to engineer fatal disasters for this very purpose. For instance:
}
} [SCENE: The first class lounge bar on the Titanic, shortly after
} encountering the iceberg. The floor is at an angle of 45 degrees to
} the horizontal, chairs and tables are piled up in the bottom corner,
} and black, freezing water is beginning to slosh in through the door.
} The band struggles to continue playing at the upper end of the room,
} whilst a lone waiter scrambles back and forth between the dozen or
} so remaining customers, all male. Aubrey fforbes-ffortescue and
} Pelham "Pongo" Grytpype-Thynne recline beneath the shattered remains
} of a grand piano]
}
} Aubrey: Cigar, old chep?
}
} Pongo:  Don't mind if I do.
}
} Aubrey: This is the life, what?
}
} Pongo:  Rahther. One was beginning to think the memsahibs would never
}         leave.
}
} Aubrey: Though one can't help wondering whether the old girls made it
}         into a lifeboat in time.
}
} Pongo:  Who can tell? Out of sight, out of mind, that's the ticket.
}         The fairer sex, God bless them and all that, but they can give
}         a chep a headache with their incessant chattering, what what?
}
} Aubrey: I should jolly well say so.
}
} [With a rending crash, the stern separates from the rest of the ship.
} The floor tilts abruptly to near vertical, catapulting the members
} of the band, screaming, through the French windows into the dark,
} turbulent waters below. One or two of the men in the room look up
} before returning to their conversations]
}
} Pongo:  Reminds one of the time one was in India during the rebellion.
}
} Aubrey: Dickens of a carry-on, that was.
}
} Pongo:  Bad show all round. Would you believe those demn darkies put
}         us all in the same Black Hole of Calcutta, men, women and
}         children together? Hardly playing the game! How was a fellow
}         supposed to gather his thoughts?
}
} Aubrey: The bounders! So typical of Johnny Foreigner, that. Simply no
}         breeding. I say, is everything all right, Pongo?
}
} Pongo:  In what way?
}
} Aubrey: Forgive my drawing attention to it, but you appeared to wince.
}
} Pongo:  Ah, that would be my gammy leg. It's somewhat slightly ecting
}         up today.
}
} Aubrey: My dear fellow! I had no idea you had a gammy leg.
}
} Pongo:  I didn't until this demn piano landed on us. Bit of a sticky
}         wicket, what?
}
} Aubrey: Well, bear up, old man. Stiff upper lip. Wouldn't do to blub
}         in front of the servants, and all that.
}
} Pongo:  Oh, rahther. What say we have another brandy?
}
} Aubrey: Freightfully decent of you. Could I trouble you for a Scotch
}         instead?
}
} Pongo:  Boy! Two Scotch over here, there's a good fellow.
}
} Waiter: At once, Sir. Would you like ice in that?
}
} Pongo:  No need - we'll help ourselves.
}
} [The waiter swims off to fetch the order, only to be crushed under a
} falling chandelier. The icy water has reached our protagonists' chest
} level, and is already over the heads of most of the others in the room.
} A steward pops his head through the doorway and asks if everything is
} all right before being consumed by flames from a fire that started in
} the engine room and is now engulfing the upper decks. Screams of pain
} and terror fill the air outside]
}
} Aubrey: Chin up, eh what?
}
} Pongo:  I'll wait for the water to reach my nostrils first, if it's
}         all the same with you.
}
} Aubrey: So, Pongo, what are your plens for the future?
}
} Pongo:  Well, what with one thing and another, one was thinking of
}         lying underneath this piano in intense pain for a few more
}         minutes and then drowning. Yourself?
}
} Aubrey: Drowning sounds attractive. Or I might toddle out in a while
}         for a spot of hypothermia.
}
} Pongo:  You old dog, you.
}
} Aubrey: Shame to miss the test match, though.
}
} Pongo:  Deshed inconvenient, but it could be worse, old fruit. We were
}         due to reach our destination tomorrow.
}
} Aubrey: [bleakly] America.
}
} Pongo:  Indeed.
}
} Aubrey: Quite right of you, getting the captain to steer us onto that
}         iceberg. Demn colonials. Ebsolutely no idea how to behave in
}         polite company.
}
} Pongo:  I hear some of them ectually have their children down to
}         dinner.
}
} Aubrey: What? Eating at the same table?
}
} Pongo:  So I am informed.
}
} Aubrey: At the same time?
}
} Pongo:  Defies comprehension, what what?
}
} Aubrey: Ghahstly! Demn, demn colonials. Blisters of the first water.
}         Death is a kinder fate.
}
} Pongo:  As you say. Where's that boy with our drinks?


1071-04    (2nsf4 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: R.P.Clement@westminster.ac.uk (Ross Clement)

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

> Oracle most refined! Before whom the most proud man humbles himself!
>
> Have you ever noticed the strong symmetry in the greco-roman alphabet?
> This sort of symmetry doesn't seem to appear in middle or far eastern
> alphabets. The act of drawing characters in Chinese seems so decisive,
> so artistic...the smooth flow of Arabic with its tiny serifs curled
> back toward the page. It all makes English seem so stuffy, so obsessed
> with symmetry, so painstakingly obsessive-compulsive. I just can't
> stand it anymore. Why is the rest of the world so much more
> sophisticated than the English? Is it genetic or is it possibly
> environmental? Possibly the rain, the mold, maybe the proximity of the
> French.
>
> Anyway, Orrie, I'm wondering just how many uses I can get out of one
> bag of tea? Can I stretch it a bit with fresh cardamom pods?
>
> Thanks.
>
> Your humble servant on God's tiny island.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Supplicant, I see your knowledge of alphabets is quite good. However,
} you neglect to mention the Tengwar, Cirth and Runes used by the peoples
} of Europe prior to the end of the Sixth Age.  Good point about the
} French!
}
} As for your teabag query, it seems a bit vague. Do you mean how many
} times can you make tea from one bag, or how many uses are there for a
} teabag?  I'll assume the latter.
}
} 1. Making tea.
} 2. Improvised throwing weapon (when dry).
} 3. Improvised paintball amunition (when wet).
} 4. Use juices for staining documents to artificially age them.
} 5. Emergency eyepatch.
} 6. Pillow stuffing.
} 7. Dye packets.
} 8. Razorblade sharpening (Tetley Pyramid Bags only).
} 9. Alien costume (glue to forhead and attend Star Trek Convention).
} 10. Body armour.
}
} You owe the Oracle a renewed membership to the Tetley Tea Folk Club.


1071-05    (17muc dist, 3.6 mean)
Selected-By: "Michael A. Atkinson" <chaos@enteract.com>

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

> I forgot my password. Can you tell me what it is?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} I'm sorry, but the Oracle can't tell you what it is until you type in
} your password.
}
} > I don't know it anymore, that's why I'm asking you!
}
} I'm sorry, but before I can remind you what it is, you have to type in
} your password.
}
} > Hang on, I know what this is. This is one of your crappy misreading
} > the question answers, isn't it? Have you any idea how tiresome those
} > are?
}
} I'm sorry, but before the Oracle can tell you how tiresome those are,
} you have to...
}
} > Okay, okay! Look, I don't want to know what "it" is, I want to know
} > what my password is, got it?
}
} Yes, I've got it, but before I can give it to...
}
} > WHAT'S MY PASSWORD?
}
} Your password is a string of characters, preferably of a memorable
} nature for you but not easily guessable by others, that you have to
} type in before you can receive a response from the Oracle.
}
} > Yes, but what are the characters?
}
} The characters are those generally associated with specific keys or
} key combinations on your keyboard.
}
} > I'm gonna crack this if it kills me.
}
} I'm sorry, but the Oracle can't tell you if it kills you until...
}
} > Shut up! Now, listen carefully. My password, that is, the one used
} > by me and not anybody else, to use in conjunction with the Internet
} > Oracle Gold Service and not anything else, consists of a string of
} > specific keyboard characters in a specific order, right?
}
} Right.
}
} > So tell me the characters!
}
} The ones in your password?
}
} > Yes.
}
} Not anybody else's?
}
} > No!
}
} In the correct order?
}
} > YES!
}
} You didn't grovel, grouchy.
}
} > I don't have to grovel! That's why I subscribe to the Gold Service.
} > It releases me from any obligation to grovel or to pay your
} > outrageous "you owe the Oracle" demands, and you can't Zot me even
} > if I ask the dreaded w**dchuck question, all for $19.95 a month.
} > Now tell me my sodding password before I burst a blood vessel!
}
} In order to use the Gold Service, you must provide your password.
}
} > I've forgotten my password!
}
} Well, you'd better start grovelling then, hadn't you, sunshine?
}
} > I can't believe this is happening.
}
} I'm waitinnggg...
}
} > Is there some other incarnation there I can talk to?
}
} No, and I've just picked up my Staff of Zot <tm>.
}
} > Okay, okay! Oh Oracle most wise, I...
}
} That's a feeble grovel! I've had better grovels than that from garden
} invertebrates. Hell, I've had better grovels than that from Juno
} mailers.
}
} > It's a valid grovel, isn't it?
}
} Oh, all right. Get on with your question, then.
}
} > Oh Oracle most wise, I forgot my password. Can you tell me what
} > it is?
}
} Certainly! It is a pronoun. More specifically, a neuter pronoun of
} the third person singular. You can use it as a substitute for a
} neuter noun in a sentence or paragraph where said noun has already
} been used at least once previously.
}
} You owe the Oracle the Kingdom of Belgium.


1071-06    (8uha7 dist, 2.7 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

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

> How come time flies when one have fun?
>
> pede

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Because it just doesn't look right when it skips. It can sometimes pass
} with a jog, but why have wings if you're not gonna use 'em?
}
} You owe the Oracle a cuckoo clock.


1071-07    (3bjof dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: surfbaud@waverider.co.uk (Dave Hemming)

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

> Is there anything that your co-workers WON'T
> eat if you put it on the table in the breakroom at
> work?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Sure there is! With the holiday season upon us, I'm sure it tradion in
} your part of the cybermire to bring all manner of goodies to nibble on
} in the office until your seams bust. So, here are my suggestions for
} keeping your goodies to yourself.
}
} FireBall Oreos
}     1 pkg. Oreos
}     1 18 gauge hyperdermic syringe
}     1 bottle of "Dave's Insanity Sauce - RESERVE BLEND" <tm>
} Preparation: Load the syringe with the hot sauce, shoot up the Oreos,
} and watch the fun. This also works best if the drink machines are
} depleted/broken down/ *sabotaged* ( not like I'm suggesting anything,
} mind you...)
}
} Sauerkraut and Marshmallow Squares
}     1- 1lb. bag sauerkraut
}     1 lg. jar marshmallow creame
}     1 box puffed rice cereal (No-name strore brand works best)
}     2 tblsp Worcestershire sauce
} Preparation: Melt marshmallow creame and add kraut, cereal and
} worcesterchire. Pour onto wax paper and shape into squares hen cooled.
}
} Sardine Truffles
}     1 1lb bag chocolate chips
}     2 cans sardines in oil
}     2 tblsp. sweet hot mustard
}     4 cups packed brown sugar
}     2 cups puffed rice cereal
}     1/4 cup water
}     2 tblsp butter
} Prep: Puree the sardines and oil and mustard until pasty. Set aside.
} Combione sugar, water and boil to "soft ball" stage. Add 1 cup
} chocolate chips. Cool.  Shape sardine mixture into 1/2" balls and coat
} with cooled, chocolate and sugar mixture. Roll in puffed rice to coat
} and dip in remaining chocolate.
}
} This should be sufficient to get those sniveling co-workers to stop
} pilfering your goodies...or at least keep them guessing as to our
} parentage. Happy Holidaze!
}
} You owe the Oracle a recipe book with "Road Kill Surprise".


1071-08    (3jgke dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: surfbaud@waverider.co.uk (Dave Hemming)

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

> Most Hot and Spicy Oracle, Strategically located in our hearts and
> minds are your wise words;
>
> When Taiwan be nuked off the face of the Earth by Red China?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} It's no good nuking countries in east Asia. When the US tried it in
} 1945, the generals found that an hour later they were power hungry
} again.
}
} You owe the Oracle (incarnated as s.hussein@iraq.gov) about 4 kilograms
} of 'lost' Russian plutonium.


1071-09    (7qq94 dist, 2.7 mean)
Selected-By: "Joshua R. Poulson" <jrp@pun.org>

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

> Dear Oracle,
>
>     Boy, you're keen.  I mean...  BOY!  Pretty darn keen.  You're so
> keen, that if I were to meet you in person, gosh, I should say I'd be
> pretty impressed!
>
>     What I want to know is this:  Is there a resource on the Internet
> where I might find out about you, as a person?  Or rather, as a devine
> Orracular entity?  Your history, your present situation, your
> companions, and such as that?  Again, I am inquiring about you, not
> about your institution or interface on the Internet.
>
>     Hope all is well with you and yours!
>
> Sincerely,
> Curious in Canada

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

}     "Wise supplicant!  You are one of but a very few that has
} discovered the quest for true wisdom and knowledge!  I commend you on
} your earnest desire to learn that which is unlearnable, know that which
} is unknowable and find that which should very possibly be left unfound.
} The path you have chosen may not be an easy one but then the worthy
} path seldom is.  Nevertheless, I will be happy to start you on your way
} ..."
}
} The Oracle waves his hand and a bright light fills the room ...
} Suddenly you find yourself in a very different place.  It is a small
} dark and musty room in which you find yourself facing a door.  On the
} door is a plate with the inscription ...
}
}                                     ftp://ftp.cs.indiana.edu/pub/oracle
}
}     ... Seized with a strangely irrisistable curiosity, you push the
} door and it opens with a soft creak.  You step inside and find that
} while the light is not much better, you are able to make out what
} appears to be a giant library ...
}
}     You find yourself now in a giant hall, filled with shelves of books
} and scrolls reaching almost to the ceiling.   The air here is cool but
} stale and there are few sounds in the room, save for the distant sound
} of footsteps from somewhere within the maze of shelves.  As you walk
} the length of one of the bookcases, the footsteps grow louder and
} finally you see a short strange looking fellow emerge from the stacks.
}
}     This one is dressed in shabby robes and shuffles along while
} glancing nervously around in a manner suggesting a longstanding habit.
} His is a face that would probably make a ferret jealous although what
} hair is present on his head has a slightly charred appearance.  While
} glancing around, he finally spots you and makes a feeble attempt to
} stand a little straighter.
}
} Zadoc:   "State your business here!"
}
} Supplicant:  "What is this place?"
}
} Zadoc:  "This is the Hall of Archives.  Here you will find all of the
} wisest and most illuminating utterances of the Internet Oracle.  How
} did you get here?!"
}
}     As you tell Zadoc of your conversation with the Oracle and
} subsequent arrival, his eyes grow wide for a moment and he appears to
} become quite nervous.  Finally, Zadoc silently guides you to another
} part of the hall where you see a computer station that contrasts
} sharply with its surroundings.  He invites you to sit down and you find
} a seat in front of your monitor.  You see that the computer's web
} browser is open to the address:
}
}                     http://www.wmin.ac.uk/~clemenr/ORACLE/search.html
}
}     The pieces start to fit and you realize that this is the search
} tool for the thousands of volumes that you see in the hall.  You turn
} to ask Zadoc another question but he is hurrying away as fast as his
} shuffling will allow and refuses to answer so you turn back to the
} screen and ponder your first query ....
}
}     You owe the Oracle three months of intense study and a skylight for
} the Hall of Archives ....


1071-10    (5jxb4 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

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

> Oh Great Oracle, who would rank highly on any scale
> of positive attributes, and would not show up in any
> rankings of undesireable characteristics, please answer
> my humble question:  Dr. Suess wrote a book called _One_
> Fish_Two_Fish_Red_Fish_Blue_Fish_.  When he wrote that,
> did he realize how prophetic he was?  I mean, golly,
> look at all this mania about bright red Siamese fighting
> fish going on these days!  People are nuts over 'em.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Dear Supplicant:
}
} For the most part, yes he did.  Unfortunately for Dr. Seuss (AKA
} Theodor Geisel, 1904-1991), his publishers were much more interested in
} him publishing children's books than him publishing visionary works,
} though he was able to blend the two in the book you mentioned.  Alas,
} not all of the books that Dr. Seuss wrote got published.  And while
} they were very insightful, almost prophetic, he felt they were not
} necessarily for small children and might in fact degrade his overall
} contribution to children's learning.  Still, they made mighty fine
} reading, and funny too!  Keep in mind that all of these titles were
} written in the late 40's and early 50's.
}
} - Greenbacks For Spam-  a clever story about a guy who is the first one
} to discover that if you mail enough people something interesting, like
} a MM scheme or pornography, a certain percentage of people will in fact
} respond.
} - How The Shrimp Stole Unix- another insightful tale about an evil
} little troll from the Northwest who took an operating system, corrupted
} it, stole some more, corrupted it some more, and built an empire.
} -The Gat in Your Back- a gritty, yet delightfully funny tale
} about street violence and car jackings in a fictious town called
} Pleasantville.
} - Box of Rocks- the story of a fairly brain dead guy who none-the-less
} succeeds.  Reportedly the Geisel estate is still contemplating
} suing Paramount and Director Robert Zeckis over possible copyright
} infringement regarding Forrest Gump.
} - Straight Way to Wealth- the story of two young entrepreneurs who
} start a company, get backers, don't make a profit, go public, and
} still make millions.
}
} You owe the Oracle a bedtime story that involves a strawberries and
} whipcream, Lisa and a beach on an exotic island.


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