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Showing posts from September, 2020

Smoke Donuts

Friends, A, wildfires! That paradoxical combination of beauty and devastation. They spellbind the soul with their hypnotic cadence. They intimidate the mind with their chaotic essence. They enchant the eye, blocking shorter wavelengths to make the sky’s reds and oranges pop at dawn and dusk. They torment the eye, irritating delicate membranes to make the veins and capillaries pop with smoke and dust. I suppose the aspects you dwell upon come down to distance and choice. The closer you or your stuff, the easier to see the vicious and be frenetic. The closer you are to safe, the easier to choose to focus on the aesthetics. They remind us our lungs are more than just viral breeding grounds, they are also particulate matter filters, cleaning the air, one breath at a time. That sporadic cough might just be lung cancer (yay, not Covid!). So, to celebrate the end of wildfire season, I decided to make some fume donuts (smoke rings) whilst browsing my photos of colorful skies. That was last wee

Backhanded compLUMENt

Friends, People change jobs now and then, LinkedIn lets me know some of them. This week, I noticed a trend: one business had hired a ton. Droves of colleagues, again and again, to a company I’d not heard of, men. The mystery began to unravel when the Google resolved the omen. My former employer back when rebranded, now goes by Lumen. No brain drain or hiring trend, just same-old, with different name. So why risk confusing all men and children and even women? No matter how ugly the pen, it’s better than starting again. If X avier was patron of X -men, were C enturyLink workers the C -men? Perhaps that’s why they’re on CNN explaining the new name to friends. Or is the New World Order bullpen having fun at our expense? It’s eLUMENtal, yes we can pretend, the iLUMENati are at it again! Whatever the reason for change, I wish you success, telco-men. To cheer you I will not eat ramen. It’s donuts forever, amen! Happy Friday!

Donut Truth

WARNING : Today’s missive, while thought provoking, treads political waters and could be perceived by some as proselytism. If you are triggered by politics, maybe don’t read this week. I plan to return to safer shores next week. Should you choose to read this, may I ask is that you withhold judgment until you’ve read the entire note? My views may prove unpalatable to folks on both sides of the aisle. Regardless of your stance, know that I value and respect you as a friend. Friends, Does a politician’s character matter? Can the champion of fiscal conservative policy have a history of stiffing creditors after recklessly over-leveraging his hotels and casinos —not once or twice, but half a dozen times? Can the defender of unborn human lives be a twice divorced misogynist who paid hush money to a porn star? Can the guardian of law and order refuse to acknowledge, yet alone condemn, racism?  Can the paladin of Christian values eschew charity for the immigrant, spew vitriol towards his det

Putting the 'AI' in EMAIL

Friends, Have you noticed artificial intelligence is trying to make us lazier? Whether LinkedIn recognizes someone thanking you and offers-up three one-click response options, or Gmail prods you to follow-up on an email you sent five days ago, AI wants to help. The results can be hilarious. Try typing-in the first two to three words of a sentence and then complete it by using only “next word autocomplete”. For instance, if I had any idea what I was going to say to the other two people that were doing great things... You get the idea (the words “for instance” in the preceding were my sentence kindling, the rest was all AI). The problem with not knowing where your sentence is going is knowing when it has arrived. While we don’t yet have complex AI-generated (AI-ded?) exchanges, the trend has made me question platitudes. Lately I’ve been making an effort to be more thoughtful in my responses. The way I see it, if Google can predict my sentence or Facebook can suggest my comment, I’m just