CSotD: Waiting for the concentration camps to be built

Capsule Debate Review: Trump didn’t respond to the questions, Biden didn’t respond to Trump, Bash and Tapper just asked the next question on their list as if they weren’t listening either. It was hard not to feel like the young couple invited to spend an evening with George and Martha in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf.”

If you are interested in the difference between truth and illusion, Mark Evanier has a collection of links to fact checking sites, but they offer few surprises.

A couple of political cartoonists have reacted, but hardly a quorum, so we’ll wait. Meanwhile, as Adlai Stevenson said, quoting Lincoln, “It hurts too much to laugh and I’m too old to cry,” but let’s turn to the funny pages anyway.

I was delighted with the outcome of the summer reading list story arc in Frazz (AMS), since Mrs. Olson came to the same conclusion Kate Messner had in her blog on the topic, which I had referenced earlier.

As she wrote back in 2009,

When my son was teaching fifth grade, he took things a step further: He asked the kids to recommend books for him to read. It provided him with some good insights into what they liked, and it also introduced him to some books that he enjoyed. Win/Win.

I got some similar insights when I was editing a kid-written section for the Denver Post, because the kids did a lot of book reviews. I had to teach them that this wasn’t like school and they weren’t required to like the new titles they chose to review, so I discovered books that were worth reading and books that weren’t. They also got to interview authors like Lois Lowry, Rick Riordan, Henry Winkler and Stephan Pastis, which is quite a spread.

And BTW, the kids were so enthusiastic about the Pixar movie Inside Out that I was surprised when critics and prognosticators predicted failure for the sequel, but the kids were right and the experts were wrong: Inside Out 2 is now among the Top Ten animated films in movie history.

Mind you, kids do need to have proper modeling. If you want them to be readers, you should not only read to them but let them see you reading.

And if you want them to be good eaters, don’t be like the mom in Ben (MWAM) and shock them: Give them a variety of things from the get-go so they’ll develop a taste for grown-up food and perhaps even a sense of adventure.

My dog eats kibble, but I never gave my kids chicken nuggets.

And on a related grumble, I’m going to disagree with Lizzie and her friend in Reply All (Counterpoint), because I found post-divorce dating to be terrific, though that may be a male/female thing.

It sure didn’t take much to stand out as a single guy in his mid-30s. Showering regularly should not make you special, but apparently it does.

Meanwhile, I had outgrown the adolescent notion that if a woman was good-looking, we should be in love. It saved me a lot of blunders down dead-end streets that I’d have raced into at 19.

Maybe the takeaway is that dating after divorce doesn’t have to be awful, as long as you learned something from your divorce, which ought to be.

Though this Jeff Stahler (AMS) cartoon reminds me of a few dates I had with an artist. When we met, we were both between gigs, but then she got a major grant and suddenly she was outside my price range.

Oh well. It was still one of my most interesting blind alleys.

Different kind of blind alley in today’s Daddy’s Home (Creators). Back in the Good Old Days, a dozen or so years ago, I got a disk with Photoshop on it, and spent many happy years chuckling at people who had waited until the company decided to rent it at exorbitant rates.

And each time I’d get a new computer, I’d slip that disk in and off we’d go, until I bought my latest laptop and discovered that the disk won’t mount. Adobe must have clamped down.

It’s like back in the days when people switched from Apple to Windows or vice-versa and discovered all their software was now worthless.

Yes, there are workarounds. No, I’m not happy about them.

The good news is, I never trusted putting stuff up on the Cloud, and when my desktop or my laptop give me pesky little reminders to finish setting things up so they can lose my files or turn them over to AI to copy, I just punch that “Remind Me In Three Days” button and wish there were a button that said, “How about never? Is never good for you?”

And, yes, I feel the same about Captcha as the grandfather in Buckets (AMS). I wouldn’t mind, I guess, if they edited the pictures so you didn’t see a little tiny piece of a traffic light and had to decide if it counted, but then I guess the evil robots would be able to figure it out, too.

I’m pretty sure AI is going to find a way to deal with this stuff that I haven’t yet, and then the security folks will have to develop stuff that nobody can parse.

Wednesday evening I phoned in a pizza order and, instead of asking my name, the guy said, “Okay. Is this Mike?” which I guess means he has some good Caller ID.

Seems to me that if the pizza guy can do that, and my phone company can spot spam calls and if when I look up sunglasses I get flooded with ads for them, a website should be able to spot spoofed IPs.

I don’t mind getting a code number on my phone to input for my bank, credit card company or the hospital, but not every website requires that level of security.

Here’s my fool-proof security solution for those others: Get over yourselves.

I’ll close with a thank you to Joy of Tech for explaining where all the crap surrounding me came from. To paraphrase the Cowardly Lion, “I do believe in multiverses! I do I do I do!”

I don’t know what aliens look like, but I remember when we all looked like this:

8 thoughts on “CSotD: Waiting for the concentration camps to be built

  1. The only downside to raising a “good eater” by giving them a variety of “good food” is that you get a kid who orders Lobster Bisque and Escargot in restaurants! Sticker shock, but worth the price of seeing the look on the waitstaff’s face.

  2. Though I’d bought my first phone in 2019 and used it on one trip to Chicago, I really never noticed caller ID in the several calls I received during the month I’d bought. But when I had my stroke in 2020 and spent several hours on the floor trying to reach my landline that was less than fifteen inches out of my reach before I passed out, to be found four days later with the phone on the floor next to me, as I was carted off to the hospital, my friends chipped in and bought me a new one. In my first several months of use in the hospital and nursing home, I also never saw caller ID except for the people entered into my contact list by my friend. Yet, several months later after I got home, I got a call from an old friend I hadn’t spoken to in several years. Beneath his number (not in my contacts) was the specific town from which his call originated, which was enough for me to identify (and answer) him because I mostly know where my friends live. To my knowledge, this was a completely isolated incident–perhaps meaning that the hundreds of calls I never answer because they’re not in my contacts are all from salesmen, advertisers, bill collectors, pollsters and other ignorables–and that none were from friends I haven’t entered into my contact list, (including my friend, who I haven’t spoken to since), or this was some very weird Straight Talk glitch. Why, I wonder, in 2024, isn’t caller ID a basic function of modern cell phones? Is it a due to outside pressure by salesmen, charities and other spamsters who don’t have 800 or 855 numbers know that nobody would ever answer them? Hmmm…

    1. Every cell I’ve ever had has had Caller ID so I’m puzzled by your post. But, not sure about this, I googled and found out that nearly all cell phones today do have Caller ID. I guess they can’t say “all” but it certainly is a “basic function of modern cell phones”.

    2. The Joy of Tech panels remind me of a sci-fi short story from decades ago. Our solar system was invaded by angry aliens who had finally figured out the source of all of the unmatched socks that fell from their sky. Turns out that your dryer can create a mini wormhole.

  3. To everyone frustrated with Windows and Apple, I have one word: Ubuntu. If you’ll allow me four words, free open-source software. It has a learning curve, but it doesn’t require a 64-character registration code, and once you download software, for FREE, it’s yours for as long as you want it. There are a few things that keep me on Windows for some of my computers (LibreOffice doesn’t do some fairly outre things I need in my job, and it’s a Microsoft-dependent organization), but if your needs aren’t that complicated, it’s great. You’ll still be tearing your hair out when you install the new operating system, but not as often.

  4. The captcha cartoon from Buckets brought to mind a couple of funny captchas at “https://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2022/12/as-long-as-were-on-the-subject-of-captchas.html”.

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