If your e-mail address ends in ".over.yonder.com" If you connect to the World Wide Web via a "Down Home Page" If the bumper sticker on your truck says "My other computer is a laptop" If your laptop has a sticker that says "Protected by Smith and Wesson" If you've ever doubled the value of your truck by installing a cellular phone If your baseball cap reads "IBM" instead of "CAT" If your computer is worth more than all your cars combined If your wife said "either she or the computer had to go", and you still don't miss her If you've ever used a CD-ROM as a coaster to set your beer on If you ever refer to your computer as "Ole Bessy" If your screen saver is a bitmap image of your favorite truck, tractor, or farm animal If you start all your e-mails with the words "Howdy y'all"
PSYCHIATRIC HOTLINE INSTRUCTIONS: RING RING CLICK Hello, Welcome to the Psychiatric Hotline: If you are obsessive-compulsive, please press 1 repeatedly. If you are co-dependent, please ask someone to press 2. If you have multiple personalities, please press 3, 4, 5 and 6. If you are paranoid-delusional, we know who you are and what you want. Just stay on the line so we can trace the call. If you are schizophrenic, listen carefully and a little voice will tell you which number to press. If you are manic-depressive, it doesn't matter which number you press. No one will answer.
The temperature of Heaven can be rather accurately computed. Our
authority is Isaiah 30:26, "Moreover, the light of the Moon shall be as
the light of the Sun and the light of the Sun shall be sevenfold, as
the light of seven days." Thus Heaven receives from the Moon as much
radiation as we do from the Sun, and in addition 7*7 (49) times as much
as the Earth does from the Sun, or 50 times in all. The light we
receive from the Moon is one 1/10,000 of the light we receive from the
Sun, so we can ignore that ... The radiation falling on Heaven will
heat it to the point where the heat lost by radiation is just equal to
the heat received by radiation, i.e., Heaven loses 50 times as much
heat as the Earth by radiation. Using the Stefan-Boltzmann law for
radiation, (H/E)^4 = 50, where E is the absolute temperature of the
earth (-300K), gives H as 798K (525C). The exact temperature of Hell
cannot be computed ... [However] Revelations 21:8 says "But the
fearful, and unbelieving ... shall have their part in the lake which
burneth with fire and brimstone." A lake of molten brimstone means
that its temperature must be at or below the boiling point, 444.6C. We
have, then, that Heaven, at 525C is hotter than Hell at 445C.
-- From "Applied Optics" vol. 11, A14, 1972
Halloween (Allhallows Even) is the evening of October 31. In its strictly religious aspect this occasion is known as the vigil of Hallowmas or All Saints' Day, November 1, observed by the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches. In the fourth decade of the 8th century, Pope Gregory III assigned this date for celebrating the feast when he consecrated a chapel in St. Peter's basilica to all the saints. Gregory IV extended the feast to the entire church in 834. In Latin countries the evening of October 31 is observed only as a religious occasion, but in Great Britain, Ireland, and the United States, ancient Halloween folk customs persist alongside the ecclesiastical observance.
Students of folklore believe that the popular customs of Halloween show traces of the Roman harvest festival of Pomona and of Druidism. These influences are inferred from the use of nuts and apples as traditional Halloween foods and from the figures of witches, black cats, and skeletons commonly associated with the occasion.
In pre-Christian Ireland and Scotland, the Celtic year ended on October 31, the eve of Samhain, and was celebrated with both religious and harvest rites. For the Druids, Samhain was both the "end of summer" and a festival of the dead. The spirits of the departed were believed to visit their kinsmen in search of warmth and good cheer as winter approached. It was also an occasion when fairies, witches, and goblins terrified the populace. The agents of the supernatural were alleged to steal infants, destroy crops, and kill farm animals. Bonfires were lighted on hilltops on the eve of Samhain. The fires may have been lighted to guide the spirits of the dead to the homes of their kinsmen or to kill and ward off witches.
During the middle ages when the common folk believed that witchcraft was devoted to the worship of Satan, this cult included periodic meetings, known as witches' Sabbaths, which were allegedly given over to feasting and revelry. One of the most important Sabbaths as held on Halloween. Witches were alleged to fly to these meetings on broomsticks, accompanied by black cats who were their constant companions. Stories of these Sabbaths are the source of much folklore about Halloween.
Pranks and mischief were common on Halloween. Wandering groups of celebrants blocked doors of houses with carts, carried away gates and plows, tapped on windows, threw vegetables at doors, and covered chimneys with turf so that smoke could not escape. In some places boys and girls dressed in clothing of the opposite sex and, wearing masks, visited neighbors to play tricks. These activities generally resembled the harmful and mischievous behavior attributed to witches, fairies, and goblins. The contemporary "trick or treat" custom resembles an ancient Irish practice associated with Allhallows Eve. Groups of peasants went from house to house demanding food and other gifts in preparation for the evening's festivities. Prosperity was assured for liberal donors and threats were made against stingy ones. These contributions were often demanded in the name of Muck Olla, an early Druid deity, or of St. Columb Cille, who worked in Ireland during the 6th century. In England some of the folk attributes of Halloween were assimilated by Guy Fawkes day celebrated on November 5. Consequently Halloween lost some of its importance there.
Immigrants from Great Britain and Ireland brought secular Halloween customs to the U.S., but the festival did not become popular in this country until the latter part of the 19th century. This may have been because it had long been popular with the Irish, who migrated here in large numbers after 1840. In America, though some churches observe Halloween with religious services, most people regard it as a secular festival. This reflects the prevailing American attitude toward a great many church festivals and holy days, as we will see in future histories.
Bill Petro, your friendly neighborhood historian
once unpacked a SCSI drive shipped from Bubba's in Louisiana, and it arrived with this article in the packaging. No kidding!
Congratulations! You have purchased an extremely fine device that would give you thousands of years of trouble-free service, except that you undoubtedly will destroy it via some typical bonehead consumer maneuver. Which is why we ask you to:
PLEASE FOR GOD'S SAKE READ THIS OWNER'S MANUAL CAREFULLY BEFORE YOU UNPACK THE DEVICE. YOU ALREADY UNPACKED IT, DIDN'T YOU? YOU UNPACKED IT AND PLUGGED IT IN AND TURNED IT ON AND FIDDLED WITH THE KNOBS, AND NOW YOUR CHILD, THE SAME CHILD WHO ONCE SHOVED A POLISH SAUSAGE INTO YOUR VIDEOCASSETTE RECORDER AND SET IT ON "FAST FORWARD", THIS CHILD ALSO IS FIDDLING WITH THE KNOBS, RIGHT? WE MIGHT AS WELL JUST BREAK THESE DEVICES RIGHT AT THE FACTORY BEFORE WE SHIP THEM OUT, YOU KNOW THAT?!?
We're sorry. We just get a little crazy sometimes because we're always getting back "defective" merchandise where it turns out that the consumer inadvertently bathed the device in acid for six days. So, in writing these instructions, we naturally tend to assume that your skull is filled with dead insects, but we mean nothing by it. OK? Now let's talk about:
1. UNPACKING THE DEVICE
The device is encased in foam to protect it from the Shipping People, who like nothing more than to jab spears into outgoing boxes.
PLEASE INSPECT THE CONTENTS CAREFULLY FOR GASHES OR IDA MAE BARKER'S ENGAGEMENT RING, WHICH SHE LOST LAST WEEK, AND SHE THINKS MAYBE IT WAS WHILE SHE WAS PACKING DEVICES.
Ida Mae really wants that ring back, because it is her only proof of engagement, and her fiancee, Stuart, is now seriously considering backing out on the whole thing in as much as he had consumed most of a bottle of Jim Beam in Quality Control when he decided to pop the question. It is not without irony that Ida Mae's last name is "Barker", if you get our drift.
WARNING: DO NOT EVER AS LONG AS YOU LIVE THROW AWAY THE BOX OR ANY OF THE PIECES OF STYROFOAM, EVEN THE LITTLE ONES SHAPED LIKE PEANUTS.
If you attempt to return the device to the store, and you are missing one single peanut, the store personnel will laugh in the chilling manner exhibited by Joseph Stalin just after he enslaved Eastern Europe.
Besides the device, the box should contain:
YOU WILL NEED TO SUPPLY: a matrix wrench and 60,000 feet of tram cable.
IF ANYTHING IS DAMAGED OR MISSING: You IMMEDIATELY should turn to your spouse and say "Margaret, you know why this country can't make a car that can get all the way through the drive-through at Burger King without a major transmission overhaul? Because nobody cares, that's why."
WARNING: This is assuming your spouse's name is Margaret. And not Pete.
2. PLUGGING IN THE DEVICE
The plug on this device represents the latest thinking of the electrical industry's Plug Mutation Group, which, in a continuing effort to prevent consumers from causing hazardous electrical current to flow through their appliances, developed the Three-Pronged Plug, then the Plug Where One Prong is Bigger Than the Other. Your device is equipped with the revolutionary new Plug Whose Prongs Consist of Six Small Religious Figurines Made of Chocolate.
DO NOT TRY TO PLUG IT IN!
Lay it gently on the floor near an outlet, but out of direct sunlight, and clean it weekly with a damp handkerchief.
WARNING: WHEN YOU ARE LAYING THE PLUG ON THE FLOOR, DO NOT HOLD A SHARP OBJECT IN YOUR OTHER HAND AND TRIP OVER THE CORD AND POKE YOUR EYE OUT, AS THIS COULD VOID THE WARRANTY.
3. OPERATION OF THE DEVICE
WARNING: WE MANUFACTURE ONLY THE ATTRACTIVE DESIGNER CASE. THE ACTUAL WORKING CENTRAL PARTS OF THE DEVICE ARE MANUFACTURED IN JAPAN. THE INSTRUCTIONS WERE TRANSLATED BY MRS. SHIRLEY PELTWATER OF ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE, WHO HAS NEVER ACTUALLY BEEN TO JAPAN BUT DOES HAVE MOST OF "SHOGUN" ON TAPE.
INSTRUCTIONS: For results that can be the finest, it is our advising that: NEVER to hold these buttons two times!! Except the battery. Next taking the (something) earth section may cause a large occurrence! However. If this is not a trouble, such rotation is a very maintenance action, as a kindly (something) virepoint from Drawing B.
Be it hereby known that this device, together with but not excluding all those certain parts thereunto, shall be warrantied against all defects, failures and malfunctions as shall occur between now and Thursday afternoon shortly before 2, during which time the Manufacturer will, at no charge to the Owner, send the device to our Service People, who will emerge from their caves and engage in rituals designed to cleanse it of evil spirits. This warranty does not cover the attractive designer case.
WARNING: IT MAY BE A VIOLATION OF SOME LAW THAT MRS. SHIRLEY PELTWATER HAS "SHOGUN" ON TAPE.