- There’s an old joke that the British are boggled that Americans
think a hundred years is a long time and Americans are boggled that the
British think a hundred miles is a long way.
Apparently that is understating things!
I was reading the latest issue of the British comic Giant
Days and there’s a scene in which Daisy, a student at the
University of Sheffield, is looking for an apartment.
We see a montage of terrible places: one is the size of a coffin, one is
a criminal’s hideout, one is across the street from a slaughterhouse,
one is haunted by a “periodic evil presence”.
Then there’s the fifth, for which the punchline is, “Well this
is very nice, and the price is great… but strictly speaking this is
I thought of the joke I mentioned and wondered—would this
Chesterfield turn out to be less than a hundred miles from
So I looked it up.
And it turns out that it is… 10.3 miles
What the what?
I know someone looking for a new place around here and we have been
discussing whether, instead of the really nice place with a
bridge‐crossing commute of 28 miles each
way, it might not be better to go for the slightly less nice place where
the commute is only 21 miles each way and stays
on one side of the bay.
A punchline based on the notion that ten miles is some kind of arduous
journey… yeah, uh, that doesn’t really land over here.
- I called one afternoon to ask what she was up to.
“I’m at my friend’s parents’ house and I was just
watching TV while they all went out to get food.
I just use streaming services at home, so it’d been ages since I
I just finished watching a new episode of Sesame
“How was that”
“Cookie Monster had an iPad”
- Speaking of which, this month I was amazed anew at the extent to which
Apple insists on maintaining a walled garden.
A student’s mom wanted to send me some pictures of the worksheets to
go over the next time I visited.
She tried emailing them, but they didn’t go through.
Next she tried uploading them to her web space.
“You are invited to view these shared photos”, said an
I clicked the link.
“Not available for this device”, the reply sniffed,
ordering me to connect “on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or
I reported back to the mom that I did not have any of those things.
She tried a different sharing service.
This time I got the files… only to discover that they were in some
Apple‐specific format that I had never heard of before and that my
computer couldn’t open.
I had to use a conversion program to turn them into JPEG files so I could
finally see the worksheets.
I really like this family, so I hope they aren’t visited by any
goon squads from Cupertino trying to teach them a lesson about daring to
try to communicate with someone who doesn’t live on Planet Apple.
- It’s always annoying when you start reading some news online and
a few seconds into the article a video begins to autoplay, so I have been
amused at sites that have started to “punish” me with the
stern message, “This video is unavailable if an ad blocker is
It reminds me of when one of the old ifMUD crew had a very young kid
who didn’t understand how threats work.
“Do what I say or I’ll stop kicking you!”
- This month I updated my “Hot 100 and
more” page ranking my favorite songs.
It was the first update since 2014, but I am old,
so it didn’t change much.
The “more” part includes an album chart, and the only two
albums from the 2010s to appear are
Hallelujah! I’m a Bum by Local H at
#7 and Ghost Notes by Veruca Salt
The fact that I may not have my finger on the pulse of the
2010s is perhaps reflected by the fact that,
while I don’t go to many concerts—one or two per
decade—one of the few shows I have seen was a double bill of
Local H and Veruca Salt back in 1997.
- I finally finished filling up this year’s
Planet queue and had to smile when the randomizer landed here:
Seems like it might be a good place for a vacation if you really want to
get away from it all.
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