The Good, The Bad and The Zucky

There are piles of books in the Messeder residence, as the Resident Home Decorator often reminds me, especially when she enters my atelier – which is a French word for “studio,” itself a fancified substitute for “office,” which, to me, sounds too darned, well, officious. I’d much rather sit in my studio with a drink and my books, and maybe … But I digress.

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It’s a small world, and electrons are really fast

John's picture(Published in the Gettysburg Times, 2/28/2014)

Across the years, each generation has found the world a tad smaller. I imagine early hunter-gatherers, accustomed to walking from place to place, were impressed by how much ground could be covered on a horse. And I can almost hear Mr. Ugh grunting to Mrs. Ugh something to the effect that “kids these days move too darn fast. They miss everything that’s going on around them.”

Then came trains, cars and airplanes, and each prompted Mr. and Mrs. U to assert the latest version of, “If God had meant us to fly, He’da given us wings.”

Then came the Internet.

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Big Brother wants your Facebook password

A growing number of employers would like your Facebook login filled in.I was in Florida a couple weeks ago, and purchased a SunPass – like an EZ-Pass to most of the rest of the East Coast states, except EZ-Pass doesn’t work in Florida. They have their own thing going down there, and they’re not sharing.

Of course, one can drive the Florida Turnpike without a SunPass. The state also has Photo Billing, with which it has replaced humans in toll booths. Gone is the toll-taker with whom you could have a slow-down and human contact on a long trip via interstate highway. Instead, you go speeding through (no need to slow down in Florida) beneath an array of cameras and have your picture taken.

And if your car does not have a working SunPass, the registered owner of your license plate will get a bill from the state – plus a couple bucks “administration fee.”

We have become inured to cameras following us around. Banks have them, as do most retail stores. They’re in casinos, … Continue reading …