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Quips, queries, and querulous quibbles from the quirky mind of Don Kahle

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Fifth Friday Filosofizing

January 31st, 2014 by dk

Fifth Friday Footnotes, Follow-ups and Far-Flung Fripperies:

  • Wait! Aren’t these supposed to come every three months? Isn’t it too soon for another fifth Friday? (The calendar didn’t ask our permission.)
  • Which printed material did people find useful first — calendars, maps, or books? (Hint: not books.)
  • I propose we swap the last two letters in our region’s name to add helpful information to those unfamiliar with the “Pacific Northwets.”
  • I completed my week of living on the food stamp allowance of $27 without much trouble, but then I thought of a more difficult challenge. What if we challenged ourselves to burn as many calories as an average American consumes in a week?
  • If corporations are people and people can own corporations, then slavery has been re-legalized.
  • I wonder if quality of life is measurably enhanced by eye contact with others. I’ll bet so.
  • I have a single-digit palate. I know the difference between a $5 meal and a $9 meal, but any benefit worth more than $10 is likely to be lost on me.
  • Modesty is alone among virtues you cannot obtain. It fills a void created by a confidence that is torn from you. Its benefit is subtractive, not additive.
  • Most Modest would be a good name for a rock band.
  • Red states implemented their Obamacare initiatives more effectively than blue states, making another case for divided (or at least circumspect) government. Kentucky was near the top. Oregon and Maryland were near the bottom.
  • Being better is easy. Being good is hard.
  • Did you notice that somebody has declared a war on “merry”? It’s been relegated to one dark winter month, but otherwise it’s never used.
  • The thief fears being robbed, often before any thieving has begun.
  • Joy is intransitive. Its object is of no consequence.
  • Is dementia experienced most as forgetfulness or confusion? Does it come in the moment as knowing too little or knowing too much?
  • Perception shapes reality more than the other way around.
  • When it snows, I feel bad for people wearing dress shoes. I feel bad for them all the time, but especially when it snows.
  • We’re a small town, but let’s not be small people.
  • Lottery sales go up when economic prospects go down. Do bank robbery attempts follow the same trend line? Bank robbers probably have more self-respect, since they rely less on luck and more on skill as they take the risk of losing.
  • How long before an airline tries charging its passengers by the pound?
  • I don’t make friends as well as some, but I lose them worse than most.
  • Eugene should remove its building height restriction and see what happens. (Probably nothing.)
  • I’d like an app on my phone that keeps track of whose turn it is to buy lunch. I’ve never really liked the Dutch strategy.
  • “Works for me” is a phrase not favored by laborers.
  • Those who report that they’re going to “jump in the shower” want us to know their life has too little jumping.
  • I’d like to meet the person who sold the first box spring. The concept itself seems dubious to me.
  • I have at least a dozen reusable grocery bags — probably more. Each will eventually end up in the landfill. How long will it take them to biodegrade?
  • I wish I could keep straight which of my beeping devices will stop after it reminds me, and which won’t stop reminding me until I obey.
  • Whoever started the movement of coughing and sneezing into your elbow instead of your hand deserves a Nobel prize.
  • Universities should move their journalism departments away from their advertising and public relations programs and into their history departments. Newsweek publisher Phil Graham once described journalism as the “first rough draft of history.” Students of the craft should learn to think that way.
  • Given rampant cell phone usage, how long before bosses abandon hourly wages altogether? Since they can no longer be sure they own your time, why would they continue paying you on that basis?
  • Computer users who are over 50 cannot remember more than two passwords, so stop telling them they’re doing it wrong.


Don Kahle ( writes a column each Friday for The Register-Guard and blogs

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