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Best of Internet Oracularities #501-525

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501-525, 516-05, 519-04, 514-01, 506-05, 517-09, 523-07, 509-02, 521-04


Best of Usenet Oracularities #501-525    (4.0 mean)
Compiled-By: Steve Kinzler <kinzler@cs.indiana.edu>
Date: Fri, 12 Feb 1993 12:21:26 -0500

Oracularities are the distilled wisdom and sagacity of the Usenet
Oracle, as incarnated in its many anonymous e-mail participants.  This
collection has been compiled from the regular Oracularities postings #501
through #525 and contains the Oracularities rated by its readers as
among the funniest.

To find out more about the Usenet 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 Usenet 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.


516-05    (017ek dist, 4.3 mean)
Selected-By: ewhac@ntg.com (Leo 'Bols Ewhac' Schwab)

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

> What is it?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Well, the obvious answer is that "it" is a pronoun (more specifically,
} a neuter pronoun of the third person singular).  But since you've gone
} to the trouble of asking the Oracle this question, instead of simply
} looking "it" up in the dictionary, you must be talking about the "it"
} of the ancient legends....
}
} In the ancient days, when the earth and sky were young, war had not yet
} been invented.  The young warriors sat around the council fire and grew
} restless, for they had nothing to do.  So chief Jumping Eagle saw that
} the warriors were restless, and decided that they must occupy
} themselves with a game. So they played tag.
}
} Chief Jumping Eagle was the first to be "it", and he tagged Dancing
} Sparrow.  And Dancing Sparrow tagged Running Bobcat.  And Running Bobcat
} tagged Walking Horse and Walking Horse tagged Sleeping Moose.  But
} Sleeping Moose was the slowest of all the warriors, and he could not
} tag anyone.
}
} So Sleeping Moose saisd, "I will tag the west wind, so that the west
} wind will be it."  And he tagged the west wind.  But then on the next
} day, the wind blew from the east, and tagged Sleeping Moose right back.
} So then Sleeping Moose said, "I will tag the water in the river, so
} that the water will be it."  And he tagged the water, and the water ran
} down the Big River, and the Big River ran down to the Big Sea.  And
} many moons passed, and the water became the clouds, and the rain fell
} on Sleeping Moose, and tagged Sleeping Moose.
}
} So Sleeping Moose said, "I'm sick of this.  I will tag the big
} mountain, which does not blow as the wind, and does not run as the
} water.  The big mountain will stay where it is, and will not tag me
} back.  So Sleeping Moose tagged the big mountain, and the big mountain
} stayed where it was, and did not tag Sleeping Moose back.
}
} And the big mountain was it for many, many seasons.  The warriors had
} grandsons and their grandsons had grandsons, until the medicine man
} they called Oracle climbed the big mountain, to speak with the spirits
} of nature.  And the Oracle said to the spirit of the big mountian "Big
} Mountain Spirit, will you speak to me?"  And the spirit of the mountain
} said "Yes, I will speak to you, Oracle."  Oracle said "What do you have
} to say to me?", and the big mountain said. "Tag, you're it!  Hahahaha!"
}
} And Oracle was it for many more seasons, until Unsuspecting Supplicant
} came to Oracle.  And Unsuspecting Supplicant asked Oracle:
}
} "What is it?"
}
} And Oracle replied:
}
} "TAG!!!  _You_ are it!!!!  No Tag-Backs!!!  Hahahahahaha"


519-04    (2455o dist, 4.1 mean)
Selected-By: David Bremner <bremner@cs.sfu.ca>

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

> Sheesh - that wasn't nice of you!

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Scene:  The Oracle's luxurious penthouse apartment, high above the
} city.  In the darkened living room, Lisa and the Oracle sit on the
} overstuffed sofa, doing unusually--- um, they sit there "cuddling."
} Suddenly, a soft, muffled chime rings out, followed by a soft, muffled
} thump as Lisa's posterior hits the floor.
}
} "D*mn!" cries the Oracle, leaping to his feet.
}
} "Ooo, I love it when you swear in Asteric," purrs Lisa, clinging to his
} leg as he struggles over towards the bookshelf.
}
} "Let go, Babe.  This could be important.  It's a message on CryptoNet."
}
} "CryptoNet?  But Orrie, that's for spies and stuff.  You don't need
} spies.  You're omniscient!"
}
} "I know."  Pulling on a fake copy of "The Prince," the Oracle trips a
} secret latch and the bookcase slides to one side, revealing an
} ultra-high-tech communications center, with more flashing lights than
} the main console of the Forbin Project.  "But spies are good for more
} than just finding out stuff."
}
} Lisa's brow furrows in disapproval.  "Orrie!  Are you playing 'World
} Domination' with Loki again?"
}
} The Oracle grins.  "I never stopped.  Just lost contact with my agents
} for a little while.  Ah, here we go."
}
} MESSAGE RECEIVED - SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
}
} "Oh poo," says Lisa.  "That's no secret message.  That's just that guy
} complaining about the business with the walrus, the banana pudding, and
} the 9-volt battery."
}
} "Ah, to the ordinary layman, that's what it LOOKS like.  All my agents
} use my special Anagram Encryption Code for their messages.  Watch what
} happens when we re-arrange the letters."
}
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT: AUTHENTICATE HE OF SHY SNOWS
}
} "Aha, my Middle Eastern Agent!"
}
} "He of shy snows?"
}
} "How often do you think it snows in the Sahara?"  Lisa pouts at this
} reply, as the muffled bell chimes again.
}
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  SHAH SHY OF A WEE CONSTITUENT.
}
} "Shah?"
}
} The Oracle clears his throat and seems to be fiddling with the
} controls.  "Well I said I hadn't heard from my agents in a while," he
} mumbles.
}
} "Yeah, but 20 years?"  Ignoring her, the Oracle taps out a quick reply.
}
} INPUT MESSAGE:  He was shy of a constituent, eh?
} ENCODING...
} OUTPUT:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  ANESTHETIC FUSE SHOT ANYHOW.
}
} "Anesthetic..?"  The Oracle thinks for a moment, then slaps his head.
} "The ceramic goat!  The plot to kidnap Khomeini!  I WONDERED what went
} wrong."
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  ANESTHETIC WHOOSH, YET SNAFU.
}
} "D*mn!" he swears, more for Lisa's benefit that out of real displeasure.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  HA HA! CONSTITUENT SHY OF EWES!
}
} The mighty Oracle rolls his eyes in disgust.  "An ungulophobe!  No
} wonder the plot failed!"
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  WHOA! SHY CONSTITUENT HAS FEE!
}
} "Fee?" says Lisa.  "You mean he's trying to bribe your agent?"
}
} "Don't worry, my agents are hand-picked men.  They can't be bought."
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  WHY EASE SHAH OF CONSTITUENT?
}
} "What!  D**n you!  Don't question my orders!"  Lisa winces:  Orrie
} almost NEVER swears in Double Asteric!
}
} "But Orrie, the Shah has been gone for years.  What difference does it
} make?"
}
} The Oracle glowers.  "It's the principle of the thing.  I better send
} this guy some assistance."  He rapidly types a message and hits the
} SEND key.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  THY ASSISTANCE? O WHEE.  HOT FUN.
}
} "Sarcasm?!?  He dares mock the Omnipotent Oracle?"
}
} "Maybe he's showing off.  Does he have any girls with him?"
}
} "Hmmm."  The Oracle dashes off a quick query.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  CANTONESE HUSSY, FEW HOT THAI.
}
} The Oracle's irritation begins to develop into a full-blown wrath.
} "Outside his assigned jurisdiction, and he even dares imply he is more
} virile than I?"  He bends over his keyboard.  "Um, Lisa, honey, would
} you go get me a cup of coffee?"
}
} "Sure!" chirps Lisa.  As soon as she is out of the room, he types
} furiously, recounting some of his favorite exploits.  Lisa hears the
} chime as she comes back with his coffee.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  THEY SWOON (ETC), HUH? FANTASIES!
}
} The Oracle begins to glow, and the cup of coffee in his hand begins to
} boil.
}
} "Um, Orrie?"  Lisa nervously backs away from him.  With the stiff
} movements of barely controlled rage, he pecks out a final warning.
}
} *ding*
} MESSAGE RECEIVED:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  YEAH, WE CONSISTENT, HUH FATSO?
}
} The All-Powerful Oracle becomes ominously calm.  He flips a switch,
} types the letters TZO, then hits the SEND key, and waits for his
} renegade agent to decode the message.  After a few moments, another
} screen lights up.
}
} *beep*
} AUTOMATED STATUS REPORT:  SHEESH, THAT WASN'T NICE OF YOU.
} CALCULATING ANAGRAM...
} OUTPUT:  THY FOES NOW AUTHENTIC ASHES.
}
} With a diabolical smile, the satisfied Oracle pushes the button, and
} the ultra-high-tech communications console disappears behind the
} bookshelf.
}
} You owe the Oracle an unemployed KGB agent.


514-01    (116ba dist, 4.0 mean)
Selected-By: John.McCartney@EBay.Sun.COM ( The Lion of Symmetry )

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

> Oh, Oracle most wise,
> whose brain can reach the skies,
> whose voice is such sweet sound
> that my grovel must abound.
>
> What is going to happen in 1993?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} A timely question indeed!
}
} The Oracle happens to have just received the scheduled outline of
} important events planned for 1993 by They.  (You know, They.  The
} all-powerful rulers of mankind.)  Here are some excerpts.
}
} January:  Bill Clinton and Al Gore sworn in.  George Bush goes
} home to Texas only to find that his hotel room/legal residence
} has been rented out for years by the Texas Democratic Party.
} Bush moves into a refrigerator crate near the docks in Houston.
} Mrs. Bush gets paying work as lead role in sitcom based on life
} of George Washington.  Dan Quayle becomes resident pro at
} Valparaiso, Indiana country club.
}
} February:  Chaos erupts in Punxawtawney, Pennsylvania as the
} Woodchuck Liberation Army storms the annual Groundhog Day ceremo-
} nies.
}
} March:  A talk.bizarre/rec.arts.startrek flamewar breaks out.
} The Imminent Death of the Net actually occurs.
}
} April:  Clinton gets important legislation passed requiring
} reinstatement of ancient feudal custom "droit du seigneur,"
} requiring all newly married brides to spend their wedding night
} with him.  Clinton passes on the ugly ones to Gore.  Gore begins
} writing book called "A Warm Pitcher of Spit Looks Pretty Good
} Right Now."
}
} May: Domino's Pizza opens first Moscow franchises.
}
} June: Domino's Pizza closes all Moscow franchises after most
} delivery boys are shot and killed by residents more interested in
} getting their hands on the nice red, white, and blue delivery
} trucks than on eating pizza.
}
} July:  Serbian militiamen invade Monaco, kill thousands, and set
} up concentration camps in casino parking lots.
}
} August:  "Oracle Day" declared national holiday in 188 countries,
} including the newest internationally-recognized nation, Detroit.
}
} September:  Clinton and Gore embroiled in wife-swapping scandal.
} Tipper claims she was brainwashed into sleeping with Bill by
} insidious, permissive hard rock lyrics.  Hillary says she prefers
} sex with someone who doesn't keep slipping up and calling her
} "Bambi" and "Muffy" in bed.
}
} October:  Chicago Cubs win World Series in stunning come-from-
} behind 4-3 victory over the Oakland A's.  Hell freezes over.
}
} November:  In a politically-motivated move timed to help Demo-
} cratic candidates in local and state elections, Bill Clinton
} sends U.S. troops into China to find out why they put so much MSG
} in take-out orders.
}
} December:  Elvis Presley found alive and well on small island in
} the Bermuda Triangle with Jim Morrison, Amelia Earhart, and Judge
} Crater.
}
} It's going to be an exciting year!
}
} You owe the Oracle 12 nudie pics of Paulina Porizkova for its
} calendar.


506-05    (046ca dist, 3.9 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@troi.cc.rochester.edu>

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

> A question that has puzzled me for ages, oh Oracle, most wise.  I shall
> be most grateful for the answer to this:
>
>       Two people pull into a parking lot into two adjacent spaces, 100
>       feet from the door.  They see two spots 30 feet closer to the
>       door.  Driver A starts the car and drives that extra 30 feet.
>       Driver B sez "Nah, too much hassle to re-start the car and drive,
>       I'll just walk the extra 30 feet."
>
>       Which of the two drivers is lazier?
>
> Thank you for the consideration of this most unworthy question.  Be
> secure in the knowledge that I will provide service to the Oracle
> commensurate to the answer!

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} Not a bad question, as far as it goes, but you forgot to include a few
} other relevant drivers.
}
} Driver C: The New York Driver; attempts to pull into driver A's space
} before driver A can reach it, despite the fact that there is a
} perfectly good empty space next to it.
}
} Driver D: The Boston Driver; attempts to pull into driver A's space
} ahead of driver A, and then parks parallel to the curb, taking up
} driver A's space, the space next to it, and a good ten feet of
} sidewalk.
}
} Driver E: The New Jersey Driver; is willing to swear before a grand
} jury that there never was a parking space, besides which he didn't take
} it, and anyway, he doesn't know anything about an unfortunate
} "accident" that befell driver A involving several tons of concrete and
} a sawed-off shotgun.
}
} Driver F: The Texas Driver; pulls into the space closer to the shop,
} then decides that, in the interests of his family, he ought to take the
} one farther away, but then concludes that his supporters really want
} him to take the first space, which he'll do if they can validate his
} parking ticket in all fifty states.
}
} Driver G: The College Student Driver; puts off deciding where to park
} until all the spaces are taken, then decides it's too late, and goes
} off to get a beer.
}
} Driver H: The Internet Driver; decides that picking a space on his own
} is too much effort, and therefore posts a query to "rec.auto.parking"
} asking, "Which space should I take?" prompting a five-month long
} thread, the content of which breaks down as follows: 15% instructions
} to read the FAQ; 54% flames; 30.999% asking "How many parks could a
} parking lot lot if a parking lot could lot parks?"; and .001% providing
} relevant (if erroneous or misleading) information.
}
} To answer your question, the laziest of all is driver I, who is so lazy
} that he does not even bother to finish answering the


517-09    (128ga dist, 3.9 mean)
Selected-By: John.McCartney@EBay.Sun.COM ( The Lion of Symmetry )

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

> Why are New Year's Eve and Christmas so close together?
> Do they have a common origin?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} As you know, Christmas originated as a celebration of the birth of
} Jesus who, according to Christian teaching, was the Savior of the
} world.  New Year's Day, obviously, celebrates the beginning of the
} year.  In order to understand the reason for the closeness of the two
} holidays, we must go back in time to ancient Judea, circa 4 BC...
}
} ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
} We are in the house of Joseph, a poor carpenter living on the southwest
} side of Nazareth, and his lovely wife Mary.  Joe is out back,
} belt-sanding a new council table for the Sanhedrin.  Mary is inside,
} watching her favorite soap opera, "As the Dreidel Turns".  Suddenly,
} she is blinded by a flash of light.
}
} "Hey?  What's that?", Mary cries.
}
} "It is I, Gabriel, the angel of the Lord.  I bring you tidings of great
} joy!"
}
} "Can it wait until the commercial?"
}
} "No, the word of God does not wait for commercials."
}
} Mary reluctantly hit the mute, and listened to what the angel had to
} say.  "OK, Gabe, go ahead."
}
} Gabriel began to explain, "The Lord has chosen you to be placed above
} all women.  You are to bear a son, and name him Jesus.  He will be the
} Savior of the world, and all will call him Emmanuel."
}
} "What's an Emmanuel?", Mary interrupted.
}
} "Don't ask questions--it's just part of the script."  Gabriel cleared
} his throat.  "Do you accept this task which God has chosen for you?"
}
} "Uh, yeah, sure, I guess so.  As long as I get to pick the date of the
} birth.  I've got a Tupperware (tm) party coming up next week, and I'm
} hosting the bridge circle on Wednesday...I'm a busy woman!"
}
} Gabriel thought for a moment.  "Well, OK, I guess.  When do you want
} the kid to be born?  Remember, this is the world's savior-to-be.  His
} birthday will be honored and celebrated for millennia to come.  Nations
} will make it an official holiday."
}
} "You mean people will get off work?"
}
} "Yeah, that's right."
}
} "Well, when could Joe use some more time off?  We did want to take a
} vacation around the beginning of next year, but we only get the one day
} off.  And Joe has already used up all his vacation for this year."
}
} Gabriel pondered this for a moment.  "Why do you want to take a
} vacation then? There's nothing going on for miles."
}
} Mary responded, "Yeah, I know.  You know Joe volunteers with the Census
} Bureau, and there's some sort of shindig going on in Bethlehem for the
} census this year."
}
} "OK, I guess that'll work.  So we'll have the baby born January 1."
}
} Mary yelled, "No, no!  That's already a holiday.  Don't waste it.  Just
} put it close to New Year's Day."
}
} "Well, when then?", Gabriel asked.  "You can't get every day off..."
}
} Mary thought for a bit, and then said, "Well, how about making it as
} close to New Year's as possible.  If they're close enought, maybe a lot
} of companies will give us all the time in between off.  Sort of a,
} well, New Year's shutdown, you might call it."
}
} "How far apart could they be, and still get the vacation?  That would
} maximize the benefits", Gabriel said.
}
} "Maybe a week or two", Mary said.
}
} Gabriel replied, "Better stick with a week.  OK, we'll have the baby
} born January 8.  That's a week after New Year's."
}
} Mary said, "That's fine.  That'll be...oh, on second thought, how about
} the week before New Year's?  Then we can claim the deduction on this
} year's taxes."
}
} Gabriel said, "OK, no problem.  One week before New Year's
} Day--that's...December 25.  Jesus, Savior of the world, will be born
} this next December 25."
}
} "Cool", Mary said.  And with that, the angel left her.
}
} ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
} And so, you see why Christmas was placed so close to the end of the
} year.  It was all part of God's wonderful and mysterious plans, which
} you humans cannot hope to comprehend.  I realize this does shed a new
} bit of light on the original Bible story, but you did want the truth,
} didn't you?
}
} You owe the Oracle a prayer to intercede for forgiveness of his sins,
} because he's probably going to Hell for writing this...


523-07    (048fd dist, 3.9 mean)
Selected-By: Ken McGlothlen <mcglk@cpac.washington.edu>

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

> How many roads must a woodchuck walk down?
>

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} [Scene:  A darkened computer lab.  A shadowy figure sits before
} the nearest terminal, which casts a sickly green glow across his
} snickering countenance.  The message on the terminal reads:
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: An answer to the #Qa58102 question is required by the
}       Oracle.
}
}       The Usenet Oracle requires an answer to this question!
}
}       > How many roads must a woodchuck walk down?
}       >
}
} The shadowy figure giggles with delight.]
}
} "It works!  My random question generator is a success!"
}
} [A second terminal beeps, and displays the message:]
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: An answer to the #Qa58103 question is required by the
}       Oracle.
}
}       The Usenet Oracle requires an answer to this question!
}
}       > How much wood is the Ultimate Answer to Life,
}       > the Universe and Everything?
}       >
}
} "Bwahahahaha!  The Oracle will be brought to his knees!"
}
} [A third terminal beeps...]
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: An answer to the #Qa58104 question is required by the
}       Oracle.
}
}       The Usenet Oracle requires an answer to this question!
}
}       > How many woodchucks does it take to change a light bulb?
}       >
}
} "Revenge is mine!  LISA is mine!  He'll be trapped in the loop
} forever!"
}
} [beep]
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: The Oracle replies!
}
}       The Usenet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
}       You wrote:
}
}       > How many roads must a woodchuck walk down?
}       >
}
}       And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
}
}       } Nice try, Loki, but there's a bug in your program.
}       } Each of the questions you send in has a blank line
}       } at the end, which makes them easy to filter out...
}       }
}       } You owe the Oracle a terminal.  This one will do:
}
} [The terminal disappears in a puff of smoke.]
}
} "Aaaaaaaauuuuuuuggggghhh!"
}
} [beep]
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: The Oracle replies!
}
}       The Usenet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
}       You wrote:
}
}       > How much wood is the Ultimate Answer to Life,
}       > the Universe and Everything?
}       >
}
}       And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
}
}       } As much wood as it will take to rebuild this computer lab
}       } when I finish dismantling it.  You owe the Oracle a mainframe.
}
} [There is a loud BANG and all the terminals vanish except one,
} which beeps and displays the following message...]
}
}       From: "The Usenet Oracle" <biff!uunet!cs.indiana.edu!oracle>
}       Subject: The Oracle replies!
}
}       The Usenet Oracle has pondered your question deeply.
}       You wrote:
}
}       > How many woodchucks does it take to change a light bulb?
}       >
}
}       And in response, thus spake the Oracle:
}
}       } Here's a better riddle:
}
} [The door to the lab shudders, as an earsplitting KNOCK KNOCK
} reverberates across the campus...]
}
} Loki whirls to face the door.  "Who's there?"
}
} [beep]
}       } Oracle.
}
} [Loki shouts a Nordic curse, and vanishes in a puff of green smoke.
} The terminal beeps again:]
}
}       } You're supposed to say "Oracle who?", moron.
}
} Better luck next time!  You owe the Oracle one of those Viking hats
} with the neat horns coming out the side, like Hagar wears.


509-02    (235ga dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: David Sewell <dsew@troi.cc.rochester.edu>

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

> O Masterful Oracle, please answer your humble suppliant this question:
>
> How does one create the world's greatest data compression algorithm?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} .


521-04    (149be dist, 3.8 mean)
Selected-By: ewhac@ntg.com (Leo 'Bols Ewhac' Schwab)

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

> O Great Oracle, whose profundities steer the fate of Man.  Answer me
> this question:
>
> Is it safe for me to run /usr/bin/fortune without spawning
> /usr/bin/outrageous_fortune < slings+arrows ?

And in response, thus spake the Oracle:

} To spawn, or not to spawn--that is the question
} Whether 'tis /usr/contrib/bin/snobol'er in the mind to
}  endure the slings+arrows of outrageous_fortune
} Or to take alarm(2) against a /bin/csh of troubles
} And by apropos'ing end(3C) them.
} To die, to /bin/sleep--no /usr/bin/more
} And by a /bin/sleep to say we end(heartache,
}  1000*shocks(natural,flesh))
} To die, 'tis a comm | summation dev(2)+out(3)'ly
}  to be wished!
} To /bin/sleep, perchance to iostream! Aye, there's the rub!
} For in that sleep of death what screens may come
} When we have shuffled off this mortal coil
} Must give us pause()
}
} You owe the Oracle source code to splint (the Shakespeare
}  verse beautifier)


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