Monday, February 28, 2011

I - Oscars or Oscar Mayer?

So the Oscars weren't quite as exciting as people hoped. Strange. The movies this year weren't all that great either. Maybe the two are related - or maybe three hours of watching people who exist in a fantasy world fawning all over themselves and each other is just not really interesting.

I think they need to start giving out awards for corporate auditors. They could have a category for most graft uncovered and for fastest exposing of undeserved bonuses. They could show film clips of the contestants studying balance sheets and making the ten-key rattle. Not only would it be highlighting something that is both real and important, I doubt you could get more than about 15 minutes out of the whole program, half-hour tops, and that would be good too.

The other really strange thing is that the same people who are griping about the Oscars being slow and boring are the ones who complain that football is slow and boring. Lets compare three hours of watching a bunch of overpaid, narcissistic, extroverts - no, wait, that applies to both - try 3 hours of who did the best job of pretending to be someone else to 3 hours of the most complex and intellectual sport ever invented. Plus with football you get violence (always a top seller, and football violence isn't done with stunt-men), you don't have to wear a tux, and you can get up and get a hot dog. So we're back to the Oscars - Oscar Mayers, that is.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

L - Big Load

Well, it's been just over 40 weeks since I last posted. That's enough time to produce a normal human baby, so I guess a new post is reasonable.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see a semi-load of Styrofoam? Here is your chance. I took this picture at a rest stop along I-5 in Washington State. The truck is hauling a full load of Styrofoam blocks. I gave the driver a hard time about having such a heavy load, but then found out that the blocks are actually part of a bridge construction system and will be used as forms for pouring concrete. The styrofoam allows for complex shapes and hollow (ok, filled with foam) parts, creating elaborately engineered load-bearing structures that take less concrete and are more rigid and able to handle earthquakes and such better. Amazing what a semi-load of foam can mean.

We sometimes fall into this pattern of thinking where we assume that something is a big load, or a light load or a worthless load, and don't take the time to really find out what that load is all about. Life has a lot of things in it that are not what they seem, even the light loads can turn out to be pretty significant down the road.