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Lettuce Now Praise

Harmless Police Mishaps &
The People Who Love Them

A burglar who stole about $90 from an elderly woman in England is getting more than his fair share in the glare of the fashion spotlight, thanks to the Hampshire police. The cause for such a widespread alarm to fashionistas and, well, elderly women all over is the sketch the good cops released of the now more than notorious criminal.
The sketch, known in England as an “e-fit,” for you non-anglophiles out there, shows some well defined facial features of the offender, who’s said to be on his 40s and having wavy blond-grey hair. Now, about that hair: Due to a malfunction in the equipment, it looks like he’s sporting some very neat leaves of lettuce on his head, and that’s when all hell broke lose.
Never mind the poor elderly woman, who remains unidentified and out of the spotlight, rightly stolen along with her purse by the still at large thief. At this point, he should be considering a change of careers, thanks to his friends at the local precinct. And the decision to never consult medieval Italian painter Archiboldo for advice on how to disguise himself.
Most likely, though, he may have dyed his head jet black and growing a mustache by now. That is, if he’s not flirting with something a tad bolder, albeit not out of character, such as sporting… an Iceberg-do. In that case, he may as well sign some autographs, get to meet the sketch artist himself and say goodbye to his five minutes of infamous fashion fame.
***

Of Killer Apps &
Subtracted Calls

As times have become a matter of additional this and additional that these days, as in, I’d be happy if I had this… or I’d be feeling wonderful right now if I only had that.. or the thing that’d really make me feel whole this time around would be another whatever… it’s no wonder people are killing for the next killer application. The soon to be known as the proverbial Killer App seems to be on everyone’s wish lists and I, for one, wouldn’t be the dark dot to find arguable things to drop against such overall wave. Who am I? One of the Gates or something?
The only thing is, going over such lists of ideal apps already invented or anxiously imagined, that people are already feeling very unhappy they don’t yet have, one notices they all seem to be useful for the go. As in, the great app to find the nearest meth dealer, or the very excellent app showing the route to the next after hours party and so on. Whatever happened to calling your guy, as in, aren’t you calling your guy or should I call mine? Oh, right, that’s so 2009.
Of course, we owe the whole concept of the urgent app to one Jobs, Steve, and his wireless hearing machine, Phone, as in IPhone (What? Steve can shop around and purchase a brand new liver but can’t get a decent reception on his IPhone? I’m shocked, shocked). Because, it’s not just that he’s finally proving his fallibility to us, what with using his considerable wealth to get himself walking around with some dead guy’s tissue within his body. It’s the whole Matrix-y thing that’s just too much for some of us.
He has just let us all down again with a mobile that drops more calls than he’s dropped engineers from the assembly line of his fruit factory, no less. That makes us truly bitter, bitter about this whole business of even having such a shining little device in our pockets that simply doesn’t deliver when we need it the most. Trying to impress some receptionist, for example, who happens to have a BlackBerry and winds up making a little finger gesture for us to wait while he fields calls from his guy, no less. Truly shocking indeed.
So we were saying, it’s all about adding extras, not subtracting them. Additional layers seem to be the preferred way, not the simplicity of just having the whole thing implanted within our body already and get it over with, so we don’t have to bother with so many buttons to press by mistake and call that deranged ex we forgot to erase from our contacts list, rather than the direct assistance for that new rooftop pool bar we’re supposed to meet someone at just about now.
So much so we feel like creating a counter line of Killer Subtracts (a bit too long, I know, but we’re working on it). Something not for those on the go but for those, like me, who’d rather prefer the concept of delivery, as in having things delivered to us, not having to go after them. It goes along with the general idea of keeping it all simple, so not to bother, so not having to even call anyone but having them call you. Yes, a familiar concept for those whose income is several brackets above my own but hey, we’re borrowing the rarefied ideal, not the actual going for the thing, remember?
Thus we don’t go anywhere, we just try to come up with our own list of things we’d like to eliminate, the Killer Subs whatever. They can keep their list of apps to help them navigate the streets without having to actually look for anything in particular, just thinking about something and finding them instantaneously, with the handy help of a killer appetizer, I mean, apposite, or, rather, a murderous aperitif, I mean, the proverbial killer app.
We, on the other hand, would rather get more sleep at the end of the day. I propose, for example, the Remote Control Subtract, which would be very helpful to use when you don’t want to make up your bed before you can watch something on TV.
Talking about that box, what about the 3D sub, that could turn any broadcast into HD 3D, glasses not needed, programming optional? Who knows? Maybe someone is in the mood of just staring at the screen but the experience would be enormously enhanced with such a technological sophistication, wouldn’t you think so? I didn’t think either.
What about having satellite whenever you go? I know some would argue, that’s an app not a sub, but the basic concept is simplification, people, let’s not lose perspective here. We’re not adding anything extra, we’re hardly keeping what we’re already have. Just like most of us, but not all, are able to keep their own liver for as long as need it. To ask for a replacement belongs to the realm of addiction to the killer app craze and we don’t want that, now do we?
Another one, the Direct Deposit of Your Winning Lottery Ticket Proceeds, without the need for notifications or TV appearances, which only ruin the whole experience anyway, what, with that growing crowd of relatives you never knew you had and friends that had been there for you all your life, you just didn’t know them. Or the Jump Into the Future subtract, where your best moments could be filtered and brought back to you, without the waste of having to go through all the bad trips that taught you absolutely nothing and, in most cases, caused permanent damage to your internal organs and cognitive prowess.
A killer sub could have some psychological value, too, of the instant-soluble type that allows you to solve all your deep-seated fears in a quick, convenient movie sequence. Just like Hitchcock did with “Vertigo,” remember? (Which Mel Brooks spoofed in “High Anxiety.”) Imagine one to rid people of their fear of cats, just by temporarily turning their facial expression into that of cat being taken for a bath, for example? Too far? Not far enough?
Regardless, I give you the killer Zamsha sub, which would work more or less like the opposite of Shazam. Instead of instantly learning who wrote that annoying pop song that’s playing loudly on someone else IPod, just when you’re trying to concentrate in not thinking about absolutely anything during your subway commute. It’d automatically erase all memory of its monochord sound, cliché chord progression, mediocre lyrics and, above all, electronic-generated voice that, otherwise, would follow you and echo within your brain until the end of the day, if you’re lucky, or you life, if you’re just like one of us.
It gives a new, bright meaning to the word killer, doesn’t it? You may feel free to come up with the ones that would suit you best. I don’t want to know anything about them, though. Please, keep it to yourself and I’ll be out of your wires soon enough. After all, there’s a moment that the old fallacy of man being a social animal starts to sound way too animalistic and an obstacle to the freedom of just being, whatever it is that drops your reception.
Coming to think about it, not having reception is not such a bad thing after all. It gives you a free pass on just saying, sorry, you’re breaking up, and the allowance to walk away and whistle your favorite tune without having to name it. Which is another good idea for a killer subtract I’d tell you all about it but I need to take this call right now. This will take a minute.
- What’s that? I’m on the corner of… yeah, it’s raining here… Oh, I’m sorry, you’re breaking up.

***

Dropped Calls

IPhone to Give You a
Happy Ending, Jobs Says

Sporting a brand new long sleeve black turtleneck shirt and a spanking designer pair of jeans, Steve Jobs walked into the conference room’s stage of Apple’s Cupertino, California, headquarters to a roaring ovation from the audience.
The man they’ve been waiting for hours to see was on his usual elated self-confidence, throwing triumphant smiles to his admirers just like a rock star who just finished a heart-wrenching rendition of “Let it Be” or “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” would. And that was still before the crowd had quieted down following insistent appeals from Apple ushers.
He gave them a few more minutes to go back to their seats before clearing his throat while pulling back his sleeves. Here was clearly someone in no hurry to rush things over. For added dramatic impact, he paced a few more times, just like Einstein probably did, before announcing to the world his Relativity Theory.
Jobs started with a brief overview of the evolution of wireless devices according to the Apple canon, the genesis of it could be traced back to his wandering in the California wilderness, right after he got kicked out of his own company in the early 80s. Interrupted only by a few “ooohs” and “ahhhs” from the transfixed audience, he went on to describe the vision that changed everything, still according to aforementioned canon, when things were bleak and hopeless until the light hit the right minds, driven by Jobs’s efforts to show them the way, and the rest turned into history. As the giant screen behind him showed pictures of his revolutionary creations, with captions to underline their ingenuity and innovative power, Jobs digressed about how the world would’ve been a sad and unarticulated place hadn’t been for his extraordinary foresight into the future. And it was by now obvious, the future was now, and he was its truly avatar, no question about it.
Never so many felt so right about having chosen to follow such an enlightened spirit, incarnated in such a frail and gaunt body, one that beat the catastrophic failure of a vital organ, only to emerge even more powerful and capable of changing the destiny of mankind as it stands today.
It was in the middle of Jobs’s description of the launching of the first IPhone that one of his assistants rushed over towards him and whispered something to his privileged ears. His facial expression changed completely, as if he had either been hit by one of his genius ideas or just realized he forgot to take one of his medicines. In any case, for all he knew, the conference was over.
He took a long breath and finally spoke, allowing the whole front row to finally exhale, entranced.
“Yeah, if you had some kind of problem with the phone, which is probably your fault, we’ll be nice enough to give you a brand new case,” he said visibly distraught. “Or a full refund, but in that case, you won’t be allowed to purchase one of our products. Ever. Again,” he continued, half spelling the words, almost menacingly. “Just talk to someone as you leave.” He let the words sink in for a second. “That’ll be all for today, guys. See you around.”
With that, he exited the room. After a moment of complete silence, the crowd erupted again into a soaring roar, applauding wildly. What a moment.

***

xxxx

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