Sturgeon’s Law

Ninety Per­cent Of Every­thing Is Crap

Derived from a quote by sci­ence fic­tion author Theodore Stur­geon, who once said, “Sure, 90% of sci­ence fic­tion is crud. That’s because 90% of every­thing is crud.” Oddly, when Sturgeon’s Law is cited, the final word is almost invari­ably changed to ‘crap’.

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Ask Brian



Most of this week the big bosses of the Valve Store™ have been/will be off-site attempt­ing to daz­zle the even big­ger bosses from Valve HQ by recount­ing the tales of past tri­umphs from FY2014 and pre­sent­ing ideas for a more prof­itable FY2015. On Tues­day when I noticed that our man­ager wasn’t in his office at his usual time, I ques­tioned over the cubi­cle wall to Mark and Tom, “Is Boy Won­der going to be out too?” (A ref­er­ence to our new super­vi­sor who is all of 30ish.) This led to maybe we should make up signs for their empty offices, one for “Robin” and another for the man­ager with Bat­man on it.

This sounded like just the thing for the then unsu­per­vised Arts & Crafts Engi­neer to do after lunch. So I went to the web and down­loaded some pho­tos of the Dynamic Duo for the man­ager and our super­vi­sor. I then did the same for 5 of the vil­lains from the 60’s TV for us peons. I mea­sured our cubi­cle name­plates, 2 x 10 for us and 3 x 12 for the big guys and made up some new themed ones. I then used some of my low tack spray adhe­sive and cov­ered up everyone’s exist­ing signs with the new ones.

They stayed up for all of an hour and a half. Bat­man called and told The Pen­guin to tell the sec­ond shift super­vi­sor to make sure they folks in the shop weren’t play­ing poker or any­thing later because the Pres­i­dent of the com­pany was going to want to take a tour of the plant after they all had din­ner. We may put them up tomor­row after­noon, because the big guns will have gone back to Jer­sey by then and leave them up until Bat­man and Robin get back to work on Friday.


This was one of ques­tions in today’s Dead­spin Fun­bag:

I haven’t seen any­one rollerblad­ing in at least 10 years. Is rollerblad­ing dead? Is it just an activ­ity that nobody does any­more? Or is it the exclu­sive domain of weird per­verts of some kind?

Rollerblad­ing is all but dead rel­a­tive to its ‘90s hey­day; sales of rollerblad­ing equip­ment have been in decline for a while. I assume this is because no one ever fig­ured out how to freak­ing stop while wear­ing Rollerblades. Back in the 1990s, peo­ple were skat­ing around and doing all sorts of KEWL tricks on park rail­ings, and so other peo­ple were like, “Oh shit! That looks fun!” And then they bought all the equip­ment, only to real­ize there’s no way to stop. You have to have skillz to rollerblade well, and peo­ple with those skillz would prob­a­bly rather go skate­board­ing or snow­board­ing instead, because Rollerblades make you look like a freak­ing dork.

Rollerblad­ing was also a gen­eral fit­ness craze, and fit­ness crazes flame up and flame out all the time. You can throw rollerblad­ing right into the fitness-craze dust­bin with strip­per­ciz­ing and zebra-rustling. You know what’s a big fit­ness thing right now? Bal­let. They’ve got fit­ness videos with ladies con­tort­ing them­selves around chairs and bal­let bar­res, and it’ll all be dead within a week.

Hey! I’m no per­vert! I’m just a guy who fig­ured out to sort of stop and enjoys the sense of speed gen­er­ated by wheels instead of sneak­ers hit­ting pave­ment. I know I’m in a def­i­nite minor­ity who still par­tic­i­pate in this fitness-craze some 20 years later, but I also admit I still enjoy a good zebra rustling now and then.

What Goes Around

The Sun­day before last on our way to Palm City we stopped for lunch at a Carrabba’s in Jack­sonville. Donna had a series of coupons from a news­pa­per awhile back that were 2 for $10 off two din­ners and in the mid­dle was a $5 off two lunch entrees. We thought we’d use the lunch coupon, but as it turns out, there is no lunch menu on Sun­day. Not a prob­lem, we could just use one of the $10 din­ner coupons. Fig­ur­ing we would not use the other din­ner one before it expired, Donna gave it away to a cou­ple that was at a table near us.

We usu­ally come back from FLA and stop near Ocala which is about halfway home. This time, because the Uni­ver­sity of Florida had a home foot­ball game, the usual Hamp­ton Inn we stay at for $98 was charg­ing a hun­dred bucks more. So last Sat­ur­day and instead of com­ing back up the Turn­pike like we usu­ally do, we opted to go straight up I-95. This put the halfway point on the south­east side of Jacksonville’s outer loop. I found a Hamp­ton Inn there for a mere $75. When we were check­ing in, Donna asked the lad behind the desk if there were any restau­rants within walk­ing dis­tance. He men­tioned three, one of which was a Carrabba’s.* Because Donna really likes their Mama Mandola’s Sicil­ian Chicken Soup and I’m easy, that is where we went for din­ner. Guess we should have kept that other $10 din­ner coupon.

It was a lot busier on a Sat­ur­day evening com­pared to a Sun­day lunch, but for­tu­nately it was still early enough that there wasn’t any real wait for a place to sit. We couldn’t get a booth of course, but ended up in a half booth right next to a fam­ily that had a baby in a stroller between their table and ours. We both thought to our­selves, “Uh oh,” but they had just got their check so we knew it would be OK. As they were leav­ing, the woman leaned over to Donna and handed her a piece of paper and asked if we wanted it. It was a coupon for $10 off two din­ner entrees…

*Not the same one as last week, that was on the north side of town.

Volens in Aeternum

Des­de­mona, or as she is more com­monly called, Desi, is the 10 year old dog that belongs to Sandy and Paul. Like all dogs, Desi can under­stand lots of com­mon Eng­lish words, like food, treat, vet, ride, bath, etc. She can also spell a few, includ­ing W-A-L-K. Desi is loyal and pro­tec­tive of the house­hold and will bark might­ily at those approach­ing, but once intro­duced to you and you give her a dog treat, you are instantly pro­moted to friend of pack.

Desi’s pri­mary func­tion is hang­ing around any per­son who is pass­ing through the kitchen, in the kitchen, or sit­ting around the kitchen table eat­ing while watch­ing hope­fully for any bit of food either offered or dropped. And while Desi is not of a breed offi­cially rec­og­nized by the Amer­i­can Ken­nel Club, her offi­cial fam­ily motto is Volens in Aeter­num which roughly trans­lates to Eter­nally Watching.

Sunrise Fishing

Sunrise Fishing

On this morning’s early walk on the beach, Donna sees a guy fish­ing and makes a bee line for him. “Where you going?” I ask. “To ask him what he is try­ing to catch,” she says. I mum­ble under my breath so she can’t hear, “Prob­a­bly fish.” She chats him up for a few min­utes while I try unsuc­cess­fully to cap­ture a photo of a pel­i­can sil­hou­et­ted by the the ris­ing sun. When she asks him if the beach is always this uncrowded he tell her it is on week­days from May to December.

The Auxiliary Wing of the ROMEO Club

Atlantic Rainbow

Today I was invited along to the meet­ing of the Palm City ROMEO club and because I don’t actu­ally have all the require­ments of mem­ber­ship I was made the first mem­ber of the Aux­il­iary Wing.

A small group of Paul’s friends come over once a week and give him a break from his care­giver duties and take him out to lunch. Because one mem­ber of ROMEO is an ex-Marine heli­copter pilot that served dur­ing a cou­ple of our country’s armed con­flicts, he is a mem­ber of the local VFW and can get every­one in. The guys like to go here because draft beer is a buck and a half and mixed drinks are just two and a quar­ter. My lunch fish sand­wich lunch today with chips, a pickle, a side of potato salad and a beer cost $5.00. Com­pare this to my $17.95 fish tacos plus $2.50 for a soft drink yes­ter­day at Conchy Joe’s in Jensen Beach and you can see why this is the default spot for the Club.

If you haven’t already Googled “ROMEO Club” to see what I’m talk­ing out, it is an acronym for Retired Old Men Eating Out. And if you did Google it, you found out it is actu­ally a thing sort of, but this isn’t in any­way affil­i­ated with either that web­site or the Young Adult fic­tion book. Any­way, I’m in the Aux­il­iary because I have not yet retired.

The above photo was taken this evening off the 5th floor bal­cony of the Mar­riott Court­yard on Hutchin­son Island. It wasn’t until I resized it for post­ing here that I real­ized it was actu­ally a dou­ble rainbow.

Caution! Crab Crossing

Crab Crossing

Donna and I had lunch in Jensen Beach and because of the round­about way we found our­selves there, I needed the GPS’s help in get­ting us on the right track head­ing back to Sandy and Paul’s house. After a short time I knew where I was and how to get home, but left the GPS on anyway.

As we crossed the St Lucie River from Stu­art into Palm City on the Mon­terey Road Bridge the GPS said take the first left onto Cor­nell Ave instead of the usual Mapp Road. What the heck, I took it. A cou­ple of streets down along on Cor­nell Ave I could see how it was going to take us, but because we needed some­thing at the store, after a cou­ple more streets, I turned right on 34th Street to go over to Mapp Rd where the local Pub­lix was.

34th was a res­i­den­tial street and there were some traf­fic calm­ing tables that needed to be dri­ven over. As I approached the sec­ond one I could see a small crab using the table as his own per­sonal cross­walk. I slowed down to let him cross (and get the cam­era out), so he slowed to see if I was going to run him over. I stopped to take the crab’s pic­ture. He noticed me not mov­ing, so he fin­ished cross­ing the road. I put the cam­era away and we both con­tin­ued on our respec­tive ways.