The Nature of it

A man and woman sat at a kitchen table together drinking and smoking.

“Pass me the lighter, please,” she said. “Thank you.”

She lit a cigarette and exhaled a large cloud of smoke that swirled in the dim light hanging from the ceiling above the table. The room was painted a yellow that was more upsetting than uplifting. Boxes of cereal cluttered the top of the fridge. An ashtray sat center of the table, filled with ash and butts. To the right of the ashtray was a copy of H.G. Wells’ Time Machine.

“How many have you had tonight?” he asked.

“Drinks or smokes?”

“Both?” he questioned.

“Why don’t you tell me since you’ve been fixated on keeping count all night and I lost it a while ago.”

“You shouldn’t smoke so much,” he replied as he poured himself a glass of whiskey.

An ad for chewing gum blared on a television in the background. It was a young man sitting at a table nervously shaking his leg, presumably waiting for someone. Probably a date. He pulled out a stick of gum and put it in his mouth. A tidal wave of fresh water came out of no where and drenched him. A woman in a short skirt and high heels walked by him and lent her hand to him and the two walked out.

“And you shouldn’t drink so much,” she pressed back.

“I’m tall. It’s different.”

“You all say that.”

“Say what?” he asked.

“It’s different.”

“Well, it is. That’s just the nature of it.”

“The nature of it?”

“Yes. We’re different, men.”

 “Well, sure. You’re quite less intelligent.”

“I mean biologically, we’re different. Look, I’m just saying it’s going to take a lot of anything before it effects me, that’s all.”

 “Of course. And I’m just a little woman who shouldn’t drink too much or smoke too much because it will effect me differently.”

“You make it sound mean spirited.”

“Oh no, I get it,” she said, nodding her head up and down while rotating the wine glass clutched in her right hand in a counter-clockwise motion.

 “You’re mad,” he replied.

She finished her glass of wine in a slow tilt of hear head backwards.

“It’s like a re-sale value, right?,” she asked. “If you were a car it doesn’t matter how many times you’ve been driven, in fact the more times the better for you, your value goes up. But not me. Say I was. No. Mine goes down each time I’ve been driven.”

He lit a cigarette now.

“Welcome back to The Bachelor,” the TV blared. “We are down to just two contestants, both of whom have won over the heart of our bachelor, but one will have to pack her bags at the end of tonight and head home. Stay tuned to find out who.”

“Well, when you buy a car how many drivers would you want to have driven the car before you bought it?,” he asked.

“I could care less, as long as it was taken care of and not damaged,” she replied pouring herself a glass of wine. “Besides,” she added. “What do you know about cars anyways?”

“As much as I need to.”

“You’re probably one of those guys who gets behind the wheel and floors it before letting the engine warm up. You have to take it slow first, let the oil grease the pistons.”

“I drive just fine, thank you,” he replied.

“You’re in no shape to drive now.”

“I’m fine, really I am.”

The woman got up from the table and began to walk down the hall heading towards her bedroom.

“I can smell your whiskey breath from here,” she replied.

A few hours later, the man rose from bed, dressed, and left the apartment. While she slept, he drove.

 

Who Would You Rather President, Trump or This Random Guy Asking For $10k?

trump2 henry frederick

The 2016 U.S. presidential race just keeps getting better.

The fact Donald Trump is considered a real candidate in the 2016 presidential race is scary, yes, but at least he’s financing his campaign with his own money–which brings me to my point:

Meet Henry Frederick, the guy worth about $10 billion less than Trump, pictured above with his (Tom’s News Headquarters are just assuming it is in fact his car, but he also might of saw the car in a parking lot and thought ‘good photo op!’) kind of nice, but now kind of dated sports car. He’s our latest and greatest presidential candidate.

Henry announced his candidacy on Monday on a gofundme page with an inspiring address to the fellow citizens of America in which he quoted a few past presidents, stated he was running as an independent (although I saw he responded to someone on FB saying he wasn’t sure which party he was aligning with–it’s okay Henry you’ve got a few months before November rolls around, you can make up your mind while you’re out campaigning), and of course stated we need to take back our country from Jihadists who are plotting our demise.

He closed it out by telling us that he studied politics in college and asked that God bless us all, and then if you scroll back up to the top and look to the right you’ll see that he’s asking for $100k. But after a day of no donations he changed his request to a modest $10k. He currently has one donation for $100 from Anna Martineau. I don’t know who Anna is, but Henry if that’s not unconditional love I don’t know what is.

I don’t think anyone knows why he’s running, in fact I’m not sure Henry knows why he’s running (again, he’s undecided on which party, kind of like an incoming college freshman picking a major). This guy is a journalist in Daytona, FL for his own news company, why does he want to be president?

Well, being the curious cat I am I decided to snoop around on Henry’s FB page.The first thing I saw was a link to “TMHS Class of 1980 Uncensored” …And well it turns out Henry created the page because he wanted an “uncensored” page because he felt censored on his high school class’ closed group, “TMHS Class of 1980.”

Henry posted on the uncensored page: “GO TIGERS! The “TMHS Class of 1980 Uncensored” is at 94 “likes” in what is the fourth Day since putting this up from scratch, frustrated that I could not freely express myself in a closed forum, especially in speaking up for what I believed was important. And perhaps i wasn’t the right forum, but there’s no question this is where it’s at… This isn’t a knock on anyone in particular. Anyone who knows me recognizes high school was 35 years ago. This isn’t lunchroom seating. And that shy scrawny kid with the runny nose and the asthma inhaler (well, still have the inhaler) doesn’t allow himself to be pshed aside. If I’m not afraid to speak up for the taxpayers in Daytona, FL by going to the FBI re: billions being siphoned by political insiders, where I’ve continued my award-winning journalism career by publishing a 24/7 internet newspaper, I certainly will speak up in social media for friends I grew up with in this home turf we call the “Quiet Corner.” And I have an emerging army of classmates and underclassmen as well as a few retired staffers who have embraced this forum because they know that I am passionate and strong-willed. Though some have moved a few thousand miles from home while others have remained close by, Thompson & the adjacent towns of Putnam, Woodstock, Killingly (Danielson), Brooklyn, Southbridge, Webster, Dudley, etc, will always be home. And there is no better place at home than our Thompson Public Schools — Mary Fisher Elementary, Thompson Middle and TMHS… This is just the beginning…”

Well I’ll show them by……running for president! Ah, yes welcome to the home of the brave, where someone like Henry can do just that! I can’t write about this anymore I have to go restore my faith in humanity.

Meeting you for lunch

I heard a junkie in the street
Yelling about how ryan never hit her
And how he never treated her like this
And I was packing my bag for school
And I stepped out my front door
Walked past the junkies sitting
On the fence, smoking, and I looked at her tortured face
For a second, only one, and I carried on
Up the hill marching towards my institution
Went to class, had a boring time
Met you for lunch
Listened to your talk of this and that
Things you consider just plain bad
But is it really all that bad? 
Have you ever sat on a fence, smoking, yelling about a guy named ryan?

  

Bill Chumley Can Go To Hell

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The recent shooting of nine people attending a bible study at the historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina has really shed light on the bigotry of those of the far right. Just about every Republican presidential candidate had some remarkably inappropriate response to the shooting.

And just when you think you’ve heard it all-“a lack of salvation in this country caused this,” “this was as an attack on our religious freedom”-comes along South Carolina’s State Rep. Bill Chumley.

While the Republican presidential candidates’ responses were all bullshit, they were sadly, not surprising. We can get as mad as we want for them trying to politicize a tragic event to fit their agendas, but it’s nothing new.

Chumley, on the other hand, is a different breed.

While defending the use of the Confederate Flag at South Carolina capitol grounds, he made several remarks which were just downright sickening.

“These people sat in there and waited their turn to be shot,” said the South Carolina state rep.

Going on to add, “That’s sad. Somebody in there with a means of self-defense could’ve stopped this.”

“Why didn’t somebody just do something?” Chumley asked. “You’ve got one skinny person shooting a gun. We need to do what we can.”

Let’s put Chumley in a room and have someone open fire and see how brave he is.

Are you ready for AI? I’m Scared As Shit

I’ve been wanting to write out about artificial intelligence (AI) for a while now and this brief article barely even gets at the cusp of it, but I keep reading about it so I felt compelled to write something about it. And I want to scare some people whom maybe know nothing about it, like my parents, who of course probably deem my discussion of it as another deranged rant from a liberal arts college student.

Touché.

Well, I remember hearing about AI a while back ago and thinking, ‘this is nothing I’ll see in my lifetime’—but I couldn’t of been more wrong.

Super smart science people are saying we could see computers with the processing power of the human brain by 2025. So, perfect—I will live to see them! And be slaughtered by them!

Because that is my initial thought—that these things will turn on us and kill us. I don’t know if I really believe that, but it is the first thing I think of when I hear about this stuff. I mean look at this thing:

"Wildcat" running fast as hell to go kill someone.
“Wildcat” running fast as hell to go kill someone.

Wildcat, a product of Boston Dynamics, runs faster than a Division 1 100 meter sprinter. But in all seriousness my paranoria isn’t that crazy, is it?

To answer this we first need to understand what exactly AI is being created to do.

In short, it’s being created to do everything a human can, but better—A LOT better. Like no errors ever better. And the idea is to improve upon everything we humans do. AI is being created to solve all our problems (in seconds) and to invent things. Just like we humans have goals, these robots will have goals as well, and they will be working to make advancements in technology, healthcare, commerce, and so on. But they’re robots, and that’s where things get tricky. Unlike robots, humans have free will, compassion, and most likely aren’t going to kill you to make one more paperclip. (Google the paperclip maximizer theory if you want to freak yourself out.)

So are we just creating a much, much bigger problem?

Elon Musk, CEO and CTO of SpaceX, thinks that we are “summoning the demon”. I don’t know what demon, but I don’t think I want any summoned. And he seems to think once this demon of AI is summoned it’s going to enslave us as pets.

Musk shared his thoughts on AI on an interview with StarTalk, stating,”I’m quite worried about artificial super intelligence these days. I think it’s something that’s maybe more dangerous than nuclear weapons. We should be really careful about that. If there was a digital super intelligence that was created that could go into rapid, recursive self improvement in a non logarithmic way, that could reprogram itself to be smarter and iterate really quickly and do that 24 hours a day on millions of computers, then that’s all she wrote.”

He then went on to say the thing about enslaving us as pets but the quote isn’t that great so I left it out.

Okay, so that’s one dude’s opinion.

Bill Nye the Science Guy was sitting in on Musk’s interview and he seems to think Musk needs to chill out.

In reply to Musk’s raving prophesy, Bill stated,”I think people have to keep in mind—computers are so reliable—but somebody is literally or in a sense shoveling the coal. What happens if you unplug the supercomputer or intelligence?”

And to that Musk and his fellow “beware of AI” friends reply that the computers will prevent us from unplugging them.

And the debate goes on and on, back and forth. And both sides have good, valid points. And I think all that really matters is you pay attention to what’s going on because this stuff is sneaking up on us. And maybe it won’t be so bad when it gets here, or maybe it will kill all of us, so if you see Wildcat coming at you, run.

Call It What It Is-Terrorism

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You’ve surely heard of the horrific events that unfolded on Wednesday at the Emanuel AME church in Charleston, South Carolina. But let’s just get one thing clear: Dylann Storm Roof is a racist terrorist.

Not a mentally ill twenty one year old.

Why is it that every time a white male goes on a shooting spree they are almost instantaneously labeled with mental illness? This labeling only works to diminish clear, intrinsic motives. In the case of Roof, racism.

Roof’s blatant racism is so obvious it’s truly appalling Fox News is calling it an “Attack On Faith.”

A person whose Facebook profile picture is them fashioning a jacket with the Rhodesian flag emblazoned is clearly trying to tell you something. They hate black people. And they think blacks should be ruled by white people.

Blessing-Miles Tendi, a lecturer in African history and politics at Oxford, told the Huffington Post that “The Rhodesian flag is important in terms of symbolism, for Rhodesia subscribed to white supremacy. A minority, racist, colonial white settler state subjugated a majority black population in the then Rhodesia for approximately a century.”

Todd Blagett, a former white nationalist record label owner, told the Wall Street Journal that Rhodesian flags are often “sold at National Alliance, Aryan Nation, and Ku Klux Klan events.”

But this was an attack on faith right?

Just ask any of these Republican presidential candidates:

  • Rand Paul: “What kind of person goes into church and shoots nine people? There’s a sickness in our country, there’s something terribly wrong, but it isn’t going to be fixed by your government. It’s people straying away, it’s people not understanding where salvation comes from.” A racist terrorist does Paul. A lack of salvation in America did not cause this, a profound hatred of black people did.
  • Lindsay Graham: “I just think he was one of these whacked out kids. I don’t think it’s anything broader than that. It’s about a young man who is obviously twisted.” Honestly how did you become a senator? It’s truly terrifying people voted for you and you have such a warped view of reality. But yes, please run for president you seem like you’d be a great choice.
  • Rick Santorum: “You just can’t think that things like this can happen in America. It’s obviously a crime of hate. Again, we don’t know the rationale, but what other rationale could there be? … This is one of those situations where you just have to take a step back and say we — you know, you talk about the importance of prayer in this time and we’re now seeing assaults on our religious liberty we’ve never seen before. It’s a time for deeper reflection beyond this horrible situation.” Do you live in America, Rick? Assault on religious liberty? Who wrote this up for you and how did you not fire them on the spot?

These statements, granted they were released before Roof admitted and disclosed his motives, are unimaginable. NOT the fact something like this could happen like Fox and CNN are saying. Every news station reported that moments before opening fire, he told the congregants he came to “shoot black people.” And these are the statements presidential candidates come out with.

What is their response now that he has admitted to this atrocity and stated he wanted to “start a civil war”?