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Internet Oracularities #1114

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1114, 1114-01, 1114-02, 1114-03, 1114-04, 1114-05, 1114-06, 1114-07, 1114-08, 1114-09, 1114-10


Internet Oracularities #1114    (72 votes, 3.1 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Mon, 30 Aug 1999 07:55:14 -0500 (EST)

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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:
   1114
   2 1 3 4 3   5 3 3 4 1

1114  72 votes blhh6 3fgpd 26ss8 7ezd3 5hve5 19isg 5my83 5arn7 4bvh9 6lqf4
1114  3.1 mean  2.8   3.4   3.5   2.9   3.0   3.7   2.8   3.2   3.2   2.9


1114-01    (blhh6 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: Christophe <xof@chanticleer.com>

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

> 12345678901234567890123456789012345678901234567890
> [Ed: 400,000 lines of this crud deleted]

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Please wait till I call your number.
}
} Number  588883994,  we are now  ready to recieve your question.


1114-02    (3fgpd dist, 3.4 mean)
Selected-By: "Leo L. Schwab" <ewhac@best.com>

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

> > HELLO, ORACLE
> Nothing happens here.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} "Damn," muttered the old prospector. "another vein shot to hell."
}
} Picking had been pretty lean this year anyway. It was hard enough with
} the queue drainers in the valley - at least a fellow could tell there
} was nothing worth panning for and move on. But this was different. Not
} only had all the good stuff been picked out, but it had been replaced
} with this junk. "Worse'n fools gold." the old man grated.
}
} He remembered the glory days at the beginning of the rush. Always
} plenty of questions, plenty of -good- answers, and the digests were
} infrequent enough that the Priests had time to pick out the REAL gems,
} put 'em up where all could see. Youngsters like him in that day had a
} model, someone to look up to, someone to emulate.
}
} But then it started to change. Gradually at first, then faster. Every
} fall brought its share of newbies at school - kids with stars in their
} eyes and shiny new e-mail addresses. They all made the same mistakes,
} the same jokes, the same questions, but eventually an old timer would
} take each one aside and explain why the woodchuck query just wasn't
} funny any more.
}
} Bless 'em all, they learned - every one of 'em. They learned or they
} grew bored and left - all the same in the end. Some of 'em even started
} teaching the newbies the next fall. Now -those- were Supplicants and
} Incarnations to be proud of! They just jumped right in and started
} digging.
}
} But now, it was different. The influx of snot-nosed kids was constant.
} First it was AOL. Then Juno and Hotmail. They swarmed the queue like
} locusts, eating everything in their path and leaving nothing but
} insults and four-letter words. Frequently in all caps. There were just
} too many to teach. No sooner would one be shown the way than he'd get
} bored, or discover girls (or maybe boys - the old timer never asked,
} and the kids never told), or find some high-bandwidth-low-content Web
} page, full of dancing baloney, to waste CPU cycles on. Then another
} would replace him. And another, and another, and another...
}
} "I'm getting too old fer this," muttered the prospector. "Too old. I
} ain't seen a decent question in months, let a lone a grovel..."
}
} But now this. Not content to strip the landscape bare, the kids were
} filling it back up with useless trash. The once productive landscape
} now yielded only non-questions, as full of wit as a dead modem and
} about as valuable. Even null questions were better than this - at least
} an Incarnation could give a guy the benefit of the doubt, choosing to
} believe he was just a little too quick on the Send key, too anxious for
} a bit of Oracular wisdom and humor, and forgot to actually type his
} question first. But now, it was obvious. They took the time to write
} something, just to prove they weren't going to write anything. Like
} laying meat just out of a starving dog's reach... so close, but so far
} away. It was Hell, pure and simple.
}
} The prospector stood, stretched mightily, and stepped back from his
} terminal. The ping of arriving mail caught his notice, but he'd had
} enough. It would wait 'til morning. Or forever - he just didn't care
} any more. Still, old habits die hard. He bent over to squint at the
} screen. The subject caught his eye: "The Oracle replies!" His heart
} skipped a beat. "A reply? I haven't sent a question in ages..." He
} opened the message and read his question, recognition dawning. It was
} one he'd sent weeks ago, and had forgotten about it in the slew of
} searching for a question worthy of his Incarnation talents. But what
} really got his attention was the reply. It was clumsily written, but it
} was original. No r.h.o.d inside jokes, no four-letter words, and the
} spelling was atrocious, but it was funny!
}
} "Maybe..." he paused. "maybe there's hope after all." He thought. "A
} good answer starts with a good question. Guess I better start writing
} good questions." He sat down and composed a message. And another, and
} another, and another... the hunt was on. Not for grovels, not for
} questions, not for answers, but for something much more important. The
} old man paused a moment, remembering an old joke and paraphrasing the
} punch line: "With all this crap, there must be an Oracle in here
} somewhere!"


1114-03    (26ss8 dist, 3.5 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

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

> Oracle Divine, before whom I am but a mite on a flea on the collar of
> mortality, pray tell me this:
>
> Why is it that whenever I try to do some work, my cat wanders into the
> room and falls asleep on my books? Is he trying to get me to fail my
> exams? Does he disapprove of the concept of studying? Or is he just
> being difficult?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} He's actually trying to help you out. Every cat knows that if you treat
} him with love and respect your life will be fulfilled and joyful beyond
} anything you could attain with a human educatio,.vkl;mdfb;.
}
} Sorry - that darned cat was laying on the keyboard again. Disregard
} anything he may have typed. Your cat doesn't want you to succeed in
} life - you would end up worshipping something other than him. He'll do
} whatever it takes to keep you where you are. I suggest you skin the
} beastlmgljfpogmhnm
} ..........
}
} Dammit, dog! Go chase the cat! Sorry, supplicant - the pets are raising
} a ruckus here in the computer room. Your habit of eating tuna fish
} sandwishes while you study is the reason for the feline tutor. Eat
} first, then brush your teeth. You should also start seeing your dentist
} regularly - you could use another cleaning, and we can do something
} about that
} overbitekl;;lkggrehvd
}
} Get away from my terminal! Sorry! I have no idea how my dentist got in
} here. I gotta get a lock on my computer room door. I suggest you do the
} same.
}
} You owe the Oracle a quantity discount at the vet.


1114-04    (7ezd3 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: surfbaud@waverider.co.uk (Dave Hemming)

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

> Oh Great Oracle, the wisest of the wise answer me this question please.
> White or Wheat?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} So you want this crusty ol' sourdough to give you a wry answer
} and you think buttering me up with a grovel is the way?
}
} Well, I donut disagree with you. I've bun wondering and won't
} loaf around, here's the poppin' fresh answer right outta the
} oven; I'm a gluten for baguettes.
}
} You owe the Oracle a toast.


1114-05    (5hve5 dist, 3.0 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

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

> Oh wonderful Oracle, who taught Bill Nye the Science Guy everything he
> knows,
> Why is the sky blue on earth, but black in space?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} You're lucky that you asked *me*, Supplicant. If you'd
} asked Einstein and Co, you would have heard all sorts
} of rubbish about polarised light, atom theory and
} quantum effects.
}
} As it happens, the Creator (an old friend of mine, he
} told me this story) got around to Earth last. He was
} all out of Black Sky, so he diluted what was left in
} the can and it came out blue.
}
} And as for the refractive atmosphere thing - what good
} is godship if you can't make these little hacks?


1114-06    (19isg dist, 3.7 mean)
Selected-By: Mike Nolan <nolan@celery.tssi.com>

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

> Oh Oracle, the one, the wise, the only entity alive before the Big
> Bang, the reason I get up in the morning, the one who puts the I in
> e-mail, the one who is smarter than "Ask Marylin", the one who scores
> 700 when bowling, the one who eats fear for breakfast, the one who
> scores 17 when golfing, the only one who understands the entire tax
> code of every country, the one who can travel in time and space and a
> few other confusing things, the one who sees the WSOGMM as vertical
> scrolling lines of green symbols, the only entity who can write a CD-R
> with his eyes, the one who scares rubiks cubes into alignment, the one
> who can talk the legs off a donkey and then persuade it to walk, god of
> all things large and small but more the large because they are more fun
> to play with except when you command the viruses to infect your enemies
> with diseases that make their girlfriends laugh at them when they take
> their pants off,
>
> What do you think is an appropriate grovel to question ratio?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} It's inversely proportional to the answer to tribute ratio.
}
} You owe the Oracle a decent pair of earplugs, a decent alarm clock, a
} provider that puts the I in ISP, the head of Marilyn Vos Savant,
} another beer, a little milk to make my bowl of fear a little less
} crunchy (and, of course, for the calcium), a little golf pencil
} sharpener, a repeal of Section 2380-3872-S-G-1076EZ because, let's face
} it, how many of us actually own our own shopping carts, an astrowatch
} that'll tell you the correct time no matter what astral plane you find
} yourself on, an accurate translation of those vertical scrolling lines
} of green symbols, a cheap pair of sunglasses, a part-time job as a
} Rubik's Chiropracter, a practical use for four donkey legs, a new pair
} of boxers and, if you happen to have one handy, the kitchen sink.


1114-07    (5my83 dist, 2.8 mean)
Selected-By: "Alyce Wilson" <berlin63@hotmail.com>

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

> O Oracle Most Wise:
>
> Why do most relationships seem to end in humiliation?  (There's a
> story behind this, but I don't want to waste the bandwidth...)

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Because men never see it coming, They see the whipped cream in the
} refrigerator, and think it's some kinky sex game. They completely miss
} the frozen pie shells in the freezer. Then, BAM! Next thing you know,
} they've got a face full of pie.
}
} You owe the Oracle a towel. You also owe Bill Gates a towel. You owe
} Lisa and Melissa Gates some more whipped cream and frozen pie shells.


1114-08    (5arn7 dist, 3.2 mean)
Selected-By: Dr. Noe <drnoe@primenet.com>

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

> Supplicant,
>
> Your confusion merely has to do with your pitiful human perception of
> the way the universe works.  Your concepts of "time" and "future" are
> rather peculiar.  So in short, the reason why it seems backwards to
> you is because you have no imagination.
>
> In response to your second question, two or three.
>
> You owe the Oracle two questions.

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} O temporally disillusioned Oracle, who understands all that has been,
} is, and will be, I prithee relieve me of my confusion.
}
} I have recently built a time machine, according to the instructions
} left to me by my great-grandfather in his will. I set the clock to send
} me back to London 100 years ago, and was transported through a flurry
} of swirling special effects (a bit like in Quantum Leap).
}
} Emerging from my portal, I was greeted by a truly Dickensian sight.
} Unruly urchins terrorised the grimy streets. There was no public
} sanitation, and the waste from houses and factories spilled freely onto
} the road. Working conditions were appalling, and even the trains to
} carry the workers home were filthy, late and overcrowded.
}
} The poor could never hope to attain the wealth and privilege enjoyed by
} the smug and greedy merchants and landowners, who passed by in their
} private carriages. Alcoholism was rife among the underclasses, and
} financial and sexual corruption among the upper classes. Almost
} everyone held bigoted, racist, nationalist and jingoistic views, hating
} our European neighbours above all others.
}
} When the bloated members of Parliament bothered to turn up at all,
} their complacency prevented any change. Most of the Treasury's money
} was spent not in helping the country's economy, but in building up the
} armed forces for another bloody and protracted war. I could see no hope
} of the country's escape from this spiral of urban poverty, appalling
} hypocrisy and insitutionalised violence.
}
} As you can imagine, I was glad to get back into my time machine and
} head back to the present day. But when I looked at the dials that I
} realised that the bloody thing had jammed, and I hadn't been back 100
} years at all, but into next week.
}
} Now I have to hope that your divine omniscience will have answered my
} question before I ask it. What I need to know is, should I fix the wide
} part of the sprocket to the engine, or the narrow part? The
} instructions said that it should be the wide part, but it seems
} backwards to me.
}
} Oh, and I know I shouldn't really ask more than one question, but I
} hope you won't mind... I can't remember who it was who said "History
} repeats itself: the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce".
} Please tell me which of the following it was.
}
} 1. Tony Blair
} 2. Marx (elaborating Hegel)
} 3. Julian Barnes (in A History of the World in 10 Chapters)


1114-09    (4bvh9 dist, 3.2 mean)
Selected-By: Otis Viles <cierhart@ic.net>

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

> Oracle, you warp our mortals minds to follow the right path and from
> us streams of tears of gratitude pour as you show us the Truth. We
> mortals are twigs and new shoots twisted by your words.
>
> They say in vitro infants can detect music. What kind of music
> do you suggest they listen to? What kind of music would produce
> what kind of child?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Actually all the children come out about the same, pink, small, noisy,
} and leaky. What's far more interesting is how the babies are created
} in the first place.
}
} CLASSICAL MUSIC
} ---------------
}
} Young people are encouraged to meet each other outside the
} concert hall at the interval. The typical conversation goes something
} like this.
}
} "May I say how honoured I am to meet you Lady Sarah."
} "It is I who is so honoured Sir".
}
} Young classical music fans are encouraged by their parents to mix with
} the opposite sex from their late teens. The reason being that by the
} time the couple has completed the elaborate and lengthy correct
} ettiquette and removed their starched evening wear, the woman may well
} have passed through menopause.
}
} JAZZ
} ----
}
} The important characteristic a Jazz fan needs to attract members of the
} opposite sex to 'hang out with' (an odd term for reproductive behaviour
} as 'hanging out' would of course defeat the whole purpose) is to be
} cool. The man will sit there in a Belgian cafe, wtih shades, jacket,
} chinos, and pointy shoes. The woman will notice him out of the corner
} of her eye, and slowly move over. The man remains cool, and pretends
} not to have noticed her. Or, even better, pretends not to have noticed
} the existence of the world at all. Eventually, the woman will come
} close enough for the transference of genetic material to take place.
} Jazz fans show poor fertility, mainly due to the large number of female
} Jazz fans who find they have mated with a store dummy.
}
} ROCK
} ----
}
} A surprisingly large number of babies are born to the fans of Rock
} Music. One of the main reasons is that male rock fans almost never
} cease reproductive activity when the female partner shouts "stop stop,
} I'm not protected". This isn't because the men are macho rapists. But
} because after a diet of Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, and Black Sabbath
} concerts, they are unable to hear anything quieter than Concorde
} landing.
}
} You owe The Oracle a portable CD player and a pram.


1114-10    (6lqf4 dist, 2.9 mean)
Selected-By: MCHEVALIER@WELLESLEY.EDU

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

> most of the time a female will know where you hide anything in the
> house because well we women are smart and know such things. if you're
> hiding something why don't you put it someplace where your wife doesn't
> go like an attic or the basement or a special place she knows that she
> is not permitted to be in. or you could have a buddy of yours keep it
> for you.
>
> now answer me this. i have an older sister that of course being older
> was in high school before me and in band before me. so  everyone knows
> me as natalie's sister and they treat me as nothing but a tag along
> with no personality. i have friends in the band that don't know natalie
> and treat me like a human being but most everyone that is a senoir acts
> like i'm nothing even though natalie has graduated. so how do i get
> them to treat me as me  and not just natalie's younger sister!!!!!
> __________________________________________________
> Do You Yahoo!?
> Bid and sell for free at http://auctions.yahoo.com

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} To: Natalie's sister <natalie@yahoo.com>
} From: The Internet Oracle <oracle@cs.indiana.edu>
} Subject: Re: Answer #Q0nV7xW, the Oracle requires an answer to this
}          question.
}
} Stop using your sister's free e-mail account.
}
} You owe the Oracle a capital letter.


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