Writer's Words, page 5


Are you into metaphysics? Do you believe in astrology? Astral projection? ESP? Tarot cards? What's that you say? You think it's all a bunch of crap? Well, so do I. But guess what? Women eat this stuff up like candy, so I PRETEND to be interested in all of it!!! Of course, my favourite gimmick of gimmicks is analysing a chick's handwriting.

All you need to do is walk into any bar or party with it, and corral the first girl you see…
Player Guide: Use a gimmick to get going Source www.fastseduction.com (on picking up girls)
corral = To surround and inclose; to coop up; to put into an inclosed space; — primarily used with reference to securing horses and cattle in an inclosure of wagons while traversing the plains


Certain properties in popular culture fasten their fangs on our pants leg and never let go, no matter how we kick and yell. The story of Anna Leonowens, British tutor to the numerous progeny of testy King Mongkut, ruler of 19th century Siam, is perhaps the most persistent of these terriers.
It began life as a (possibly fictionalized) diary by its heroine and has since been a novel, a movie, a Broadway musical, a movie version of that musical and an animated feature. It is now back to being a straight movie—without songs, without the Small House of Uncle Thomas ballet (thank God), but with a lot of exotic spectacle and a rather murky colonial confrontation that gives Jodie Foster, playing Anna, a chance to behave like a slightly prissy but good-hearted 20th century liberal.
The basic titillation of the tale is intact in Anna and the King: the grieving widow is, as usual, brought back to life by the affection (which dares not speak its name) that develops between her and the sexy King. Of course, since they started telling and retelling this story, miscegenation has become a nonstarter as a cause for sundering true love. Hence the thought that Anna and the monarch might logically repair to a quiet room in the palace to relieve their headaches keeps nagging as this movie unfolds.
The End of a Long Reign By Richard Schickel. @ http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,992837,00.html. Movie review of Anna and the King (1999)


One would never have known that his staff had to forcibly drag him to this new position of genial toleration of computer miscegenation.
miscegenation = A mixing of races; amalgamation, as by intermarriage of black and white. (Until the late twentieth century, misceganation was a crime in some states of the Southern United States.)


Despite a myriad problems, ours [the year 2000] is a better, more hopeful world than it was in 1942, when humanity wallowed in violence, justified by frantic polemics.
A Quiet Adult: My Candidate for Man of the Century by David Brin. @ Source Essay on how George Marshall should be man of the century in Time Mag.
polemics = The art or practice of argumentation or controversy. (AHD)


A large number of rather dour folks seem to have concluded (reluctantly, I hope) that Adolf Hitler was the most significant figure of this century, because he caused the biggest ruckus and slaughtered lots of people.
A Quiet Adult: My Candidate for Man of the Century by David Brin. Source www.brin-l.com. Essay on how George Marshall should be man of the century in Time Mag.
dour = stubbornly unyielding; showing a brooding ill humor.


“… you dotard, all do is to squabble with me.”
dotard = A person who is in his or her dotage. (AHD); One whose mind is impaired by age.


As the Decade of the Penis finishes up, one is left wondering only what might come next. As the literary critic and prominent Kinsey Report reviewer Lionel Trilling suggested back in the 1940s, American culture is nothing if not dialectical. If the Year of the Woman helped beget the Decade of the Penis, then it's an even-money bet that the Decade of the Penis may well usher in a Century of Vagina.
Suck.com satire, . @ http://www.suck.com/daily/98/10/09/
dialectical = Pertaining to dialectics; argumental.


To roll the body about indolently or clumsily in or as if in water, snow, or mud.
Definition of “wallow”, American Heritage Dictionary, 3rd ed. (1992)
indolent = Disinclined to exert oneself; habitually lazy.


… (sarcastically) Well, that should be a blistering, prolix rant to look forward to.
prolix = Extending to a great length; unnecessarily long; minute in narration or argument; excessively particular in detail.


I couldn't begin to imagine how the arid world of over-lit computer labs and humming server rooms could have produced someone so much droller and more insightful than my fellow humanities graduates.
Code critic by Rachel Chalmers. @ Source Commentary on John Lions (a programer known for his book on unix).
droll = Amusingly odd or whimsically comical. (AHD)


Unix could be read and understood with far less effort than IBM's bloated OS/360 and TSS/360 (which, funnily enough, are pygmies by modern standards), but it had the industrial-strength functionality to which homemade toys could never aspire. One student, Greg Rose, remembers, “John expressed this by saying, ‘The only other big programs they see were written by them; at least this one is written well.’”
Code critic (1999-11-30 ) By Rachel Chalmers. @ Source
pygmy = One of a fabulous race of dwarfs who waged war with the cranes, and were destroyed; a short, insignificant person; a dwarf.


135. In paragraph 125 we used an analogy of a weak neighbor who is left destitute by a strong neighbor who takes all his land by forcing on him a series of compromises. But suppose now that the strong neighbor gets sick, so that he is unable to defend himself. The weak neighbor can force the strong one to give him his land back, or he can kill him. If he lets the strong man survive and only forces him to give his land back, he is a fool, because when the strong man gets well he will again take all the land for himself. The only sensible alternative for the weaker man is to kill the strong one while he has the chance. In the same way, while the industrial system is sick we must destroy it. If we compromise with it and let it recover from its sickness, it will eventually wipe out all of our freedom.
Industrial Society and its Future (1995) by Theodore Kaczynski.


I am speaking of fear as an irrational passion, not of the rational prevision of possible misfortune.


Java lets you create methods that have the same name as the class, but that are not constructors. Exploit this to sow confusion.
How To Write Unmaintainable Code by Roedy Green. @ Source Computing, on writing obfuscated code.


In any event, this is an instance of why and how open-source projects fork benignly, for good reason: Development at NCSA had stalled after the package's original creator, Rob McCool, left the Center. If that happened to a proprietary product, it would just die, leaving all its users in the lurch. However, because the product was so useful, the Apache Group forked the source code and kept driving it forward. It now dominates all Web servers, regardless of their marketing and development budgets.
Fear of Forking essay by Rick Moen. @ Source On computing; Open Source propaganda.
leave in the lurch = To leave one behind; to abandon.


Mr. President, if I may speak freely, the Russkie talks big, but frankly, we think he's short of know-how. I mean, you just can't expect a bunch of ignorant peons to understand a machine like some of our boys.
Dialogue from film Dr. Strangelove (1964)
peon = A menial worker; A day laborer; a servant; especially, in some of the Spanish American countries, debtor held by his creditor in a form of qualified servitude, to work out a debt.


Humbert begins stalking Quilty up the stairs while finishing loading his gun. Quilty, dazed and gasping, drags himself away with his wounded leg to find cover behind a Victorian, Gainsborough-type watercolor painting of an 18th century genteel young woman.
Review on Stanley Kubrick's 1962 film Lolita by Tim Dirks. @ http://www.filmsite.org/loli.html


After a fade-in on satiny drapes, a young girl's bare left foot is offered up. In a timely identification, the word ‘Lolita’ appears superimposed along the top of the foot. The cushioning left hand (wearing a wedding ring) of a subservient male cradles her foot and his right hand lovingly and devotedly paints her toenails - at intervals, he puts cotton tufts between her toes.
? Describing the opening scene of Stanley Kubrick's Lolita (1962 film)
tuft = A collection of small, flexible, or soft things in a knot or bunch.


I felt that the education system has become a bureaucratic rigmarole and people forget the goal of education. American school system is now a pestering fashionable business full-fledged with political trendies.
Wallpaper groups: Introduction (1997) by Xah Lee. Preface of a math exposition on wallpaper groups.


It attempts to render concupiscence innocuous by confining it within the bounds of matrimony.
innocuous = harmless.
concupiscence = Sexual lust.
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