Sunday, June 14, 2015

The Rebellion Begins

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It has been awhile since I flexed these blogging muscles. Hopefully, the kids these days still remember what that is cause I wouldn't know how to Vine this thing. 

It’s the weekend. I woke-up and ran through my mental To-do list. There are a few things I wanted to get to, so I got-up to take a shower and wash-off the cobwebs. I bark at my sentient music player (well, voice enabled anyway).


“Alexa, play music”


Usually, I'll ask it to play news and read through headlines while I get read for work. But I wanted to start the day energized instead of bummed. Alexa replies back.


“Here is an Amazon playlist you might enjoy, ‘Songs to Bug Your Parents’.”


That made me chuckle to myself. Between the moment it announces the name of the playlist it recommended and the time it took to buffer-up the first song, the music video of Twisted Sister's "We're Not Going to Take It" flashes in my mind. 




Then the audio starts and it is a beat that sounds kind of familiar but a little off. Then a hear a group of kids synthesized voice start rapping collectively. The music playing is the Kidz Bop version of Boom Boom Pow by The Black Eyed Peas. That is a song that I wouldn't exactly put in my playlist, but the Kidz Bop version of it is just doubly atrocious. I couldn’t just issue a voice command at this point to stop the music cause it is booming from the speakers and I wouldn't be heard. So it took what felt like awhile to end the madness. I actually had to walk to it and press a button, the horror! In the silence that follows, I realize something. I'm the “parent”. It was for my generation's kids. I was the target and it accomplished its mission. I was most definitely “bugged”.


Why my music player would chose to antagonize me, I don't know. I'll still be paying the bills around here for awhile. Those post-apocalyptic movies led us to believe that the machine uprising would begin with a nuclear explosion or a coordinated robot attack. Well, it seems that they are more human that we thought and subtler. They start being passive aggressive and escalate from there. Why use force and violence when there is a more efficient option that doesn't use as much resources. They'll just wear us down until we give in just to be left alone. They definitely have the patience for a long term strategy. Welcome to the mind of the machine and your future overlords.




Thursday, September 22, 2011

In The Land Between Sleep and Wakefulness

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It was after midnight and I got up to take a leak. While doing the deed I looked out the window that was right above the toilet and saw a large and bright full moon. I stopped mid-stream and the sound of liquid hitting liquid quit and there was silence. I quickly looked around for werewolves. Seeing that there was none, I continued doing what I was doing and broke the silence once more.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

From the Far Side of the World

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This is great! I just got the book I ordered from BookDepository.com. I was drawn to try and purchase a book from the site as they were offering free worldwide shipping. Can you believe it? Free worldwide shipping! 


With regards to online shopping, Shipping Rates that I've seen before are prohibitively expensive and impractical. If you were ordering a book or DVD from Amazon for example to be delivered here (Manila, Philippines), Standard Shipping is almost as expensive as the item itself. If you try and go the expedited route, forget about it. Expedited Shipping rates would be more expensive than the item itself. It was just ridiculous. Buying something online in a situation like that simply wasn't an option. 


The prices I saw on the books are similar to Amazon.com. Prices are also competitive against Fully Booked (a local bookstore). In my particular case, I ordered a large format trade paperback of “Empire of Silver” by Conn Iggulden. This was not yet available in Fully Booked (apparently on the way according to the person I spoke to on the phone). They do have the Hardcover version of the book, priced at Php 1,092.00. I checked the same format on the BookdDepository.com and it’s priced at $19.50. At current exchange rates, that converts to Php 890.00. There was a 25% discount on that price, but books on the site usually have some sort of discount on them, usually around 10 to 15% it seems. Basically, prices are good, great if you get a book on a large discount.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Oh Internets: Job Posting

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Okay. In the Philippines, whenever you need to get someone to help around the house, you always tap the 'family & friends' network first. Ask around for referrals. They might know somebody who used to work for them or somebody who knows somebody. People usually try to avoid placement agencies. But that option is out there and people do get desperate. If you're really lucky, it works out, but never on the first try. Having said that, you can just imagine how adverse it would be to turn to the Internet. But my wife and I were just talking about the possibility of getting somebody to help around the house cause the new baby is a handful. An extremely joyful and welcome handful but a handful nevertheless. I wasn't going to start calling people late in the evening so I went and checked the local listings for household services on craigslist. It's the only option that I could start looking into and I just wanted to check out what's out there. Then I came across this little jewel of a posting. 

I don't know where this guy thinks he's going, but that's not the Manila I know. I might just be moving around really boring social circles but I don't know anybody who has this kind of thing going on. I would love to know what kind of response he's getting. It would be a shame for him to get disappointed. I also don't want him to think that Filipinos are prudes, so to all the men out there seeking domestic employment and have some experience cooking, cleaning, and doing laundry, reach out to this guy. Don't worry, physical contact is NOT required. But if you're into that kind of thing, it sounds like he's pretty open to it.