Friday, August 31, 2012

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Bad Week for Armstrongs

This week, in addition to the dethroning of Lance Armstrong, erstwhile seven-time Tour de France winner, we mark the passing of Neil Armstrong, the first person to set foot on the moon. Well, not foot exactly. Boot. Which gets into the whole question of what “on the moon” means. He could have stayed inside the ship and still have been “on the moon” about as much as he was in his space suit.

But the more important question is: Why is Neil Armstrong important? There were a bunch of astronauts in the program. Neil just got lucky.

And the astronauts were just there for show anyway. Really, the Apollo program involved thousands of scientists, engineers and normal people. And the Apollo program followed on the heels of Projects Mercury and Gemini, which in turn followed all kinds of other rocketry and space research going back to the first kid to fire a spitball.

Seriously, Neil Armstrong had about as much to do with the moon landing as Harrison Ford did with the creation of Indiana Jones. He got to play the part, but other people came up with the story and did all the planning, engineering and design.

But putting astronauts in made the whole thing sexy. That’s why Kennedy committed us to putting a man on the moon. It could have been a dog or a monkey. In fact, we did put several dogs and monkeys in space, but NASA didn’t really want the moon landing immortalized by the image of the flight crew peeing on the flag pole.

And having people in the space program meant all kinds of research into human survival in hostile conditions, remotely monitoring vital signs, and the invention of Tang and freeze-dried ice cream. So all in all, it was worth it.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Friday, August 24, 2012

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Greatest Inventions

Apple has now become the most valuable public company in history. No doubt this is largely due to their seemingly endless stream of life-altering, or at least culture-altering, gadgets. Think about it ... the Macintosh, the Newton (ok, low blow), the iPod, the iPhone, the iPad, the iDon'tKnowWhatButThereMustBeSomethingElse.

But in all this, it's easy to lose sight of what are really the most significant inventions of all time. Therefore, as a public service, we provide this reminder.

5)computersIn addition to letting us expose every aspect of our personal lives to friends and advertisers alike1, the computer has revolutionized just about every other product on earth. It is also responsible for getting millions of indigent nerds off the streets and into productive jobs.
4)hair coloringI don't know, but my wife insists this is essential.
3)Girl Scout Thin MintsHey, when you make a list, you can pick.
2)mute buttonsEver watch commercial TV? Indispensible!

And the number one most signifiicant invention of all time ...
1)toilet paperSeriously, would you trade this for any of the others?

1On the information superhighway, Facebook is the bumper stickers.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Friday, August 17, 2012

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Monday, August 13, 2012

Friday, August 10, 2012

Sunday, August 5, 2012

The Ultimate Lawyer Show

TEASER

Interior, tastefully furnished law office with glass-walled conference rooms, private offices and desks in the open area. Plants and muted artworks adorn the walls. A well dressed bloated gentleman, who vaguely resembles Captain Kirk from "Star Trek", is talking with a somewhat younger bloated gentleman who vaguely resembles the young guy from "Sex, Lies and Videotape."

KIRK-LIKE GUY: We'll have to go outside the firm for this one.

SLV-LIKE GUY: Sir?

KIRK: We need all the best legal minds in the country. Money is no object.

SLV: Seriously?

KIRK: Well, ok we'll try Priceline first.

SLV: Ok. I just hope this is going to be worth it.

KIRK: Are you kidding? It's a gold mine.

ACT ONE

Interior, glass-walled conference room. The walls are completely hidden by stacks of bankers boxes. More boxes are stacked on the conference table, amid piles of papers.

Around the table are ALICIA FLORICK, FRANKLIN and BASH, BOBBY DONNELL and ASSOCIATES, MCKENZIE, BRACKMAN, CHANEY and KUZAK, MATLOCK, CLINTON JUDD, PERRY MASON and A WOMAN WHO LOOKS VAGUELY LIKE CHARLIE MCCARTHY'S LITTLE SISTER. They are all occupied with reading files and documents.

Every so often, one of them flips a page, or turns a document sideways as if to examine a diagram, or clears his or her throat.

ACT TWO

Same.

ACT THREE

Ditto.

ACT FOUR

Likewise.

TAG

KIRK and SEX-LIES-VIDEOTAPES GUY are sitting on a balcony, smoking big, fat stogies.

KIRK: Well, I guess we're ready for that Apple v Samsung case now!

SLV-GUY: Are we?

KIRK: Who the hell knows? Let's just chuckle and enjoy our stogies like we always do.

END



Friday, August 3, 2012