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Internet Oracularities #1094

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1094, 1094-01, 1094-02, 1094-03, 1094-04, 1094-05, 1094-06, 1094-07, 1094-08, 1094-09, 1094-10


Internet Oracularities #1094    (73 votes, 3.0 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Tue, 18 May 1999 09:15:26 -0500 (EST)

To find out all about the Internet Oracle (TM), including how to
participate, send mail to oracle@cs.indiana.edu with the word "help"
in the subject line.  ("Internet Oracle" is a trademark of Stephen
B Kinzler.)

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:
   1094
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

1094  73 votes comc3 66leq 38rnc bwm80 kenb5 8alp9 8lrg1 4olea 4duce 1eyg8
1094  3.0 mean  2.6   3.7   3.5   2.4   2.5   3.2   2.7   3.0   3.3   3.2


1094-01    (comc3 dist, 2.6 mean)
Selected-By: "Tim Chew" <twchew@mindspring.com>

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

> "What's the greatest movie of all time?"
>
> "Hey, do I look like Roger Ebert?"

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} No, "Hey, do I look like Roger Ebert?", which starred Woody
} Allen and Peter Sellers in a humorous look at a Roger Ebert
} look-alike contest, was only so-so. Other perennial contenders
} like "Gone with the Wind" and "Casablanca" have memorable moments;
} but, for a combination of social relevance, sophisticated dialog,
} pithy humor, and a plot that keeps you guessing until the last
} scene, nothing can compare with "The Three Stooges Meet the Mummy".


1094-02    (66leq dist, 3.7 mean)
Selected-By: Darkmage <davis@wehi.edu.au>

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

> Oracle most wise, whose wisdom few can match,
> Hang it all! No one can! None at all, natch!
>
> Let me, please, O Oracle, beseech Thy sacred self,
> In cyberspace incarnated by human, dog, or elf.
> Should I tell her I love her, or on the other hand,
> A silence should I keep, and not take such a stand?
>
> My desired's named, um, Beth; she's beautiful and hot.
> Everyone turns to look at her, but attached she's not.
> Er... well, she is, but, you see, her guy's really a shnook --
> Terminals he types at, and I think he's quite a crook.
>
> My thoughts on him don't matter, I guess you wouldn't care,
> Even though he's said to be quite mean and e'en unfair:
>
> 2 friends of mine told me he burnt a guy to crisp:
> All he'd done was say the phrase "wood shack" with a lisp.
> More tales abound but I think the point by now you get.
>
> Um... back to my query: regarding Beth, I bet
> Some love for me is in her, though I don't know for sure.
> Understanding that, please tell me: should I risk my health, and more,
> Allowing myself to be burnt, or who *knows* what he may do,
> Letting all that happen, just to tell her "I love you"?
>
> Sure I should! -- is what I say, but Your advice I seek,
> Perhaps it would be better to remain quiet and meek,
> Of my love saying nothing to the apple of my eyes.
> Tell me please, I beg you, O Oracle most wise.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Supplicant, oh supplicant, your grovel's bent my ear.
} Your question I would once ignore, yet still I do draw near
} to listen to your tale of woe, and when it all I've heard,
} to ponder and to posture, and to offer you my word.
}
} Your love, she sounds a wonder true, all beauty and all grace,
} Her glance would melt the coldest ice, or cause a heart to race.
} But her love is another, yea, a vengeful, evil beast.
} You fear what he in wrath might do, what punishment unleash.
}
} Do I get your gist, your jive, the point of your sojourn?
} It's a story told a thousand times, a thousand more reborn.
} You're not alone in wondering which path is best to take.
} For every man who's won his love, another's heart did break.
}
} But sooth, I say, it isn't yet your heart for which I care.
} Your foe, when learning what you've done, will set out and prepare
} to lash you true with whips of flame, red and burning hot.
} In short, you fool, to punish you with a great and terrible *ZOT*!
}
} Aha, you see, I am too wise to fall for your sad ruse.
} I know this "Beth" of which you speak, the one you call your muse,
} is no "Beth" at all! This one, whom you describe so well,
} is none other than my Lisa! Now you'll rot in hell!
}
} Did you really think that I would fail to understand?
} Perhaps that I'm too slow, too old, or simply out of hand?
} "Omniscience" is a word that you should really have looked up.
} It might have saved us both from what is shortly coming up.
}
} Now Zadoc, priest and servant true, will bring to me my staff.
}
} <sigh>
}
} I said, "Now Zadoc, priest and servant true, will bring to me my
} staff!"
}
} (Sorry, oh great one. Here ya go.)
}
} About damn time. What have I said to you about missing your cues? Rats.
} Made me lose my train of thought and everything. Line! Yo, line! Oh,
} that's right.
}
} Ahem.
}
} Now Zadoc, priest and servant true, has brought to me my staff.
} I'm tempted to ask him to do this thing on my behalf,
} because I hate to soil my hands with dealing with your kind.
} But just this once I'll do it for the pleasure that I'll find.
}
} My anger's piqued, my staff is charged, I have you in my sight,
} Come forth now fire, wrath, and heat, and cure me of this blight!
} I call upon the gods above, who've grant--
}
} (Orrie! Hey, Orrie!)
}
} Huh? I'm in here, Lisa!
}
} (There you are. Whatcha doin'?)
}
} Same as always, angel cake. Listen, I'm really busy--
}
} (Ooh, I know that guy!)
}
} Yes, I know, see I was just about to--
}
} (Small world, huh. Well, I'm off. I borrowed your credit cards, okay? I
} need some new shoes.)
}
} Sure, sugar lump.
}
} (Smoochies!)
}
} Uh-huh. Bye, now.
}
} (Orrie! I said, "Smoochies!")
}
} Aw, geez, Lisa, you know I don't like to do that stuff in front of the
} supplicants....
}
} (Orrie!)
}
} <sigh> Okay, okay. Smoochies!
}
} (Hee hee! Bye!)
}
} Finally. Okay, where was I, AGAIN? Right.
}
} My anger's piqued, my staff is charged, I have you in my sight,
} Come forth now fire, wrath, and heat, and cure me of this blight!
} I call upon the gods above, who've granted me my gift,
} to tear apart all space and time, and cast into the rift
}
} this mortal slug, this worm, this filth, this oozing, crawling thing
} who dares to look upon my bride! (I'm giving her the ring
} any day now; don't you think that just because we're not
} yet married you can look at her-- I say that you cannot!)
}
} Yes, thunder, lighting, come right down, and burn this sickly roach
} who on my girlfriend-- nay my wife!-- believes he can encroach.
} Kapow! And zap! And whoosh and blam! These sounds you will soon hear!
} Can you feel it deep inside, that black and chilling fear?
}
} I see that you're one of two things: courageous or just dumb.
} For as I stand above you touching trigger with my thumb
} I see that your knees do not quake, your forehead does not sweat.
} Why would that be? I can't believe there's something I'd forget.
}
} I have my staff, I'm ready to zot, and yet you stand there still.
} No tears, no screams, no fainting spell, you don't even look ill.
} Perhaps you think you'll beat me yet, you arrogant son-of-a-bitch.
} But one little *ZOT* and all you'll be is a foot-high pile of pitch.
}
} Your hair goes first, burnt off your head, and then your clothes
} ignite, fueled by shoes of leather, there, and jeans worn way too
} tight. And then the rest of you will burn, but first your sweatshirt,
} orange, will blacken slowly, as flames dance...
}
} Um.
}
} Oh, rats.
}
} ZADOC!
}
} (Master?)
}
} I need a rhyme for "orange."
}
} (Master??)
}
} You heard me. And make it snappy. I'm right in the middle of an epic
} poem, here. And while you're at it, keep your voice down. Can't look
} flustered in front of the supplicants.
}
} (<whisperwhisper>)
}
} IS THAT THE BEST YOU CAN DO? "Door hinge!?" You can't be serious. How
} am I going to work "door hinge" into an epic poem of love and revenge?
}
} (<whisperwhisper>)
}
} Of COURSE I have to rhyme "orange." There he is, see? His shirt. Bright
} as a pumpkin. There's no way that could be mistaken for yellow. It's
} too bright to be red, and not brown enough to pass for "umber."
}
} (<whisperwhisper>)
}
} NO I CAN'T ASK HIM TO CHANGE HIS SHIRT. Oh, for the love of.... Just go
} away. I'll get myself out of this.
}
} Your hair goes first, burnt off your head, and then your clothes ignite,
} fueled by shoes of leather, there, and jeans worn way too tight.
} And then the rest of you will burn, but first your sweatshirt, orange,
} will blacken slowly, as flames dance, reflected in that door hinge.
}
} <shudder>
}
} Enough of this, my patience wanes, your time it has expired.
} This staff is heavy, and my back is getting really tired.
} I hoped that this would be more fun, but now I see it's not.
} Writing poems is a lot of work to go to for a *ZOT*.
}
} A poem for a question, who could resist that kind of bait?
} I will admit I didn't see the trap that did await.
} "I'll challenge him to rhyme with me, and we'll see who's the better,
} when I appear before him wearing an unrhymeable sweater!"
}
} That hubris I could not ignore, I had to meet your challenge.
} But now that my reply's been framed, I can... um...
}
} Oh, the heck with it.
}
} *ZOT*!
}
} You owe the Oracle a rhyme for "challenge."


1094-03    (38rnc dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: surfbaud@waverider.co.uk (Dave Hemming)

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

> Oh great and powerful Oracle, your wisdom is truly historical...
>
> I've read that it was everything from the spread of Christianity to
> increasing raids from barbarian tribes, but that all sounds too
> convenient.  What _really_ caused the fall of the Roman Empire?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The year CCCLXXXVIII problem.
}
} You owe the oracle a hammer, a chisel and a *slightly* larger stone
} block.


1094-04    (bwm80 dist, 2.4 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

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

> Oracle most wise (if occasionally strange),
> At 6:05 AM 5/7/99, I received this e-mail:
>
> At 02:59 AM 5/7/99 -0500, you wrote:
> >The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
> >Your question was:
> >
> >> Don't bother attempting to contact the Coast Guard. The ship is no
> >> longer under your control.
> >>
> >> If you would, please look at D-Sections 187 and 188. Remember: I am
> >> in control.
> >>
> >> Now, sound the alarm.
> >
> >And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
> >
> >} Yes, that's probably a good idea:
> >}
> >} <WHOOP> Code ARI: Plot not found error <POOHW>
> >} <WHOOP> Code NOSX: Unfinished screenplay <POOHW>
> >} <WHOOP> Career not Found looking for Bullock <POOHW>
> >} <WHOOP> vi not found; Using EDLIN to edit film <POOHW>
> >}
> >} Now let's see. Hard to think with all these klaxons sounding.
> >} Something is missing. Ahh yes...the grovel.
> >}
> >} Now where is this Supplicant? Oh, how kind.
> >} Everyone else in the town of Control, Georgia, USA
> >} please take cover.
> >}
> >} <!!!ZOT!!!>
> >}
> >} Your estate owes the Oracle "Speed 3: Pedal Power" on beta.
>
> Now, this is a interesting, amusing and entertaining question/answer
> set. I like it. For all I know, it'll end up in one of the digests.
>
> Just one small problem... I neither wrote the question or the answer.
>
> So how did I end up with this message?
>
> Do we have a problem?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

}       Well since you liked it I guess we don't have a problem, but
} still its odd that it happened.  Let me just check the files on eveyone
} involved.
}
} Flip ....Flip....Flip.  Ah!  I see1 It has to do with the Universal
} Balance of Phrases.  You see words tend to get really jealous if they
} are used more than other words (you should hear those x-words complain)
} and the same holds for phrases such that if one phrase containing a
} word is used, all phrases must be involved somehow.  Since the mesage
} involved a Speed watcher and a speedreader, it had to be sent to a
} speed user, speed skater, speed demon, etc.  Sending it to you killed
} many birds with one stone!
}
} You owe the Oracle a glass house, a stone's throw, a skipping stone,
} Stonehenge, [rest deleted to save space]


1094-05    (kenb5 dist, 2.5 mean)
Selected-By: R.P.Clement@westminster.ac.uk (Ross Clement)

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

> You know what I've always wanted to see?
>
> An Oracularity in the style of John Cage.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The Oracle Responds:
}
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} yeah
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} yeah
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------
} ---------------------------------------------------------


1094-06    (8alp9 dist, 3.2 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@packrat.aml.arizona.edu>

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

> > n
>
> You exit north.
> You enter into a large antechamber. Fiery braziers burn all around you.
> A massive red carpet leads across the massive room. At the end of the
> carpet is a majestic being on a throne, and a worm-like individual.
>
> > look at worm-like individual
>
> Uncomfortable with your glance, he cowers. He wears tattered clothes,
> and a dented button reading "Zadoc".
>
> > look at majestic being
>
> You look upon the majestic being and know in a second that this is the
> omnipotent Internet Oracle! His Staff of Zot shines brightly at his
> side. His face is only a blur.
>
> > grovel to oracle
>
> You beseech the Oracle, "Oh great and powerful Oracle...". He's heard
> this one before. If you could see his face, you would swear his eyes
> were rolling.
>
> > ask oracle for chicks
>
> The Oracle is bored with these pedantic requests. His finger twitches
> towards the Staff of Zot.
>
> > push button
>
> You see no button here! The Oracle grabs the Staff of Zot.
>
> > push button on plot device
>
> Just as the Oracle aims the Staff of Zot at you, you push the button on
> the Plot Device(tm)....
>
> [DISCONTINUITY]
>
> After a brief blackout, you appear to be a majestic being sitting in a
> chair looking down on a worm-like individual and a lowly, yet familiar
> supplicant that you are in the progress of zotting.
>
> ***ZOT!!!***
>
> The lowly, yet familiar looking supplicant drops the now useless Plot
> Device as he is blasted three dimensions away. The worm-like individual
> cowers.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} > look
}
} You are now a majestic being.  Around you are a worm-like individual, a
} staff of ZOT, a useless plot device, and a question queue.
}
} > look question queue.
}
} You see a question in the form of an Infocom parody.  "Oh, no, not
} again," you sigh to yourself.
}
} There is a question here
}
} > feed question to useless plot device
}
} The useless plot device grows bigger.
}
} There is a question queue here.
}
} > look question queue
}
} You see a question about woodchucks.  "Oh, no, not again," you sigh to
} yourself.
}
} There is a question here.
}
} > feed question to useless plot device.
}
} The useless plot device grows bigger.
}
} There is a question queue here.
}
} > look question queue
}
} You see a question about cavemen.
}
} There is a question here.
}
} > feed question to useless plot device.
}
} The useless plot device grows into an overused plot device.
}
} There is a question queue, a wormlike individual, and a ZOT staff here.
}
} > feed ZOT staff to overused plot device
}
} The overused plot device grows bigger.
}
} There is a question queue and a wormlike individual here.
}
} > feed wormlike individual to overused plot device
}
} Zadoc kicks and screams like a little girl, but you manage to feed him
} to the overused plot device.  The overused plot device grows bigger and
} achieves critical mass.  The overused plot device explodes and destroys
} everything.
}
} You are dead.
}
} You scored 87 out of a possible 100.
}
} You achieved the rank of old, cynical incarnation.
}
} Play again? (Y/N)


1094-07    (8lrg1 dist, 2.7 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

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

> Just WHO is Lisa? Is she merely a digital construct for RHODers?
> Or based on some voluptuous carbon unit that exist(s/ed) in the
> real world?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Oh, she exists, just as much as I do. There have been days in which I
} was convinced she was nothing more than a figment of my imagination,
} but those were usually the days that involved one of several things:
}
}   * Lots of Tequila or Jack Daniels,
}
}   * Huge amounts of w__dch_ck questions,
}
}   * Lisa was in one of her bondage/sado-masichistic phases, and well,
}     hallucinations are quite common when subjected to that, as any
}     american POW in vietnam could tell you.
}
} In reality, she's really a very nice person. Really! And I'm not just
} saying that because she noticed what I'm typing and is holding my
} <ZOT> wand to my back. If she cud mve t to the eft typng wld be easer
} ahhh... much better.
}
} To tell you the truth, my life may have been much simpler without
} her, but not nearly as exciting and fun. And I know this because
} she told me so. Who needs oracular wisdom when your girlfriend can
} tell you everything you need to know?
}
} Anyway, I had best stop while I'm ahead. I don't want to say anything
} that she might make me regret.
}
} You owe the Oracle a ball-and-chain, and 3 pairs of leather shackles.


1094-08    (4olea dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: MCHEVALIER@WELLESLEY.EDU

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

> Does he love me too?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The good news is: Yes. He does love you. In fact, he thinks about you
} constantly. He thinks about you instead of studying (which is going to
} cause a slightly-lower grade in that Java final exam next week). He
} talks about your beauty, intelligence and your, um, well, er, beauty to
} all of his friends. As a matter of fact, he talks about you so
} constantly, insistently and even without pause that several of his dorm
} friends have signed up with the suicide watch at the university medical
} center.
}
} Yes, dear, he does love you.
}
} Now the bad news. In 22 years you'll find yourself married to a
} 42-year-old man who not only loves you but also suddenly decides to
} quit his job at the software company and start a company to import
} Japanese bookbinding cloth. After three years, he will go bankrupt and
} get into serious trouble with the IRS. He will then decide to become an
} Episcopal priest (don't worry; they're allowed to be married) and,
} after seminary, he'll get a posting as a rector in a parish in the
} Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
}
} You will have three children and gain about 45 pounds. He will still
} love you and still think you are the most beautiful woman he's ever
} seen in his life.
}
} Sure, you'll lose the house in New Jersey, but the parish will give you
} a rent-free house in Michigan. The bankruptcy court will allow you to
} keep your grandmother's dishes, but they will make your husband sell
} that little sailboat the two of you liked to take out on the Hudson
} River on weekends.
}
} Every morning, for the rest of his life, he will say a private prayer
} to God, thanking Him for giving you to him.
}
} One of your daughters will decide that she wants to become an artist.
} She'll fail, but she'll end up as a manager of a bookstore in mid-town
} Manhattan, and will be very happy.
}
} You'll have good days, you'll have bad weeks, you'll have exciting
} months, you'll have some very strange years.
}
} But he'll love you.
}
} You'll both go on vacation to India. You'll have a car wreck that will
} will injure you and your youngest son (you'll all be okay, although Jim
} will have a slight limp for the rest of his life).
}
} And he will always, always love you.
}
} You owe the Oracle a happy life.


1094-09    (4duce dist, 3.3 mean)
Selected-By: Mark Lawrence <lawrence.4@osu.edu>

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

> Uhm, Oracle...I'm scared.  The US Military accidentally bombed a
> Chinese embassy.  Are we going to go to war with China?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Of course not, don't be silly!  China would be much too fragile for a
} protracted ground war.  We'll be going to war with MREs and
} lightweight, durable mess kits.  Of course, being far too old for
} combat service myself, I mean "we" in the sense of "you"...
}
} You owe the Oracle an egg roll, hot and sour soup, and an order of
} General Tsao's Chicken.  No need to serve it in fancy dishes.


1094-10    (1eyg8 dist, 3.2 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@packrat.aml.arizona.edu>

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

>  Oracle, Master of The Internet, Sworn Enemy of Fluffy;
>
>  Is a French Dinner the same thing as a forty-foot robot who
>  appreciates poetry, but is bent on destroying the world?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} The Oracle is pleased to note that you've cleaned up your grammar.
} As a gesture of good will, I will abort the mobile ZOT delivery
} service that I had previously ordered.  Now, let's consider:
}
}               French dinner                  Killer robot
}               -------------                  ------------
} Attitude:     Bad.  Snooty waiters           Bad.  Wishes to destroy
}               think you are scum.            everything.
}
} Price:        Exorbitant.  An appetizer      Exorbitant.  Rebuilding the
}               consisting of one snail        demolished cities will run
}               costs 56 dollars.              into the billions.
}
} Esthetic      High.  The French appreciate   High.  The killer robot
} Value:        the finer things in life,      loves poetry, despite its
}               whatever their faults.         unfortunate evil nature.
}
} Good first    No.  The uppity French will    No.  Maniacal psychopath
} date choice?  reveal you for the uncultured  robot will tear you and
}               clod you are, leaving your     your date limb from limb,
}               date singularly unimpressed.   not endearing you to her.
}
} The Oracle may be forced to reconsider his earlier answer...maybe a
} French dinner and a forty-foot robot who appreciates poetry, but is
} bent on destroying the world _are_ the same thing.
}
} You owe the Oracle a statistical analysis of the odds of the same
} incarnation getting both your original question and the sequel.


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