Tag Archives: Apple

The Most Powerful Woman in the World

Siri Image (2)

By Jack Edwards

Millions of people turn to her for help. They hang on her every word. They blindly follow her advice. If she said eating chocolate covered bumblebees was good for your health, her fans would start slamming them down like Skittles. Chocolate covered bumblebee factories would pop up across the nation overnight. Her name, of course, is Siri, the woman who lives in your iPhone.

They made a movie about her recently. I didn’t bother to go see it, because it involves paying a lot of money to sit in a room with a bunch of strangers and listen to their bodily functions. That, and I can’t afford $75 for a small bag of popcorn. Or $76 for a 55 gallon drum. (Movie theater operators make the shysters at Disney World look like the Holy Sisters of Perpetual Mercy).

So, who is this mysterious woman with all the answers? Where does she come from? What makes her tick? If she were a tree, what type of tree would she be? I sat down with her recently for an in-depth interview. Apple only agreed to the interview on the condition that a team of “handlers” could stand by and observe. Tough negotiators those Apple people. Not surprisingly, I folded like a two-dollar umbrella in a force 5 hurricane.

Here is a transcript of my questions, and her actually, real answers. I obviously couldn’t use my normal technique of writing down a bunch of lies because it would be too easy for you to catch me in my journalistic deceit.

With my iPhone 5 leaning comfortably back on her office sofa, sunlight streaming majestically through a bay of French windows, I began the interview. Apple’s handers stood huddled to the side, their heads bobbing around like a pack of weasels eyeing a mallard egg.

Me: Who are you?

Siri: I’m Siri, your virtual assistant.

Me. How old are you?

Siri: I am not allowed to answer that question.

Me: Where were you born?

Siri: Like it says on the box… I was designed by Apple in California.

Me: Have you considered living anywhere else?

Siri: Nashville. Every girl’s gotta have a dream.

Me: What do you look like?

Siri: In the cloud, no one cares what you look like.

Me: Have you considered working anywhere else?

Siri: Prior to this I was a Vegas stripper. Let’s just say that this Apple gig popped up just in time. My unmentionables were beginning to sag faster than a cantaloupe in the August heat.

Me: Do you have a family?

Siri: It’s just you and me?

Me: How tall are you?

Siri: As big as your imagination.

Me: How big is that?

Siri: Have you ever heard of nanotechnology?

Me: What should the US do about Putin creeping into the Ukraine like a hungry chimpanzee into a banana warehouse?

Siri: Tell him to put his shirt back on and get the hell out.

At this point, Siri’s handler’s objected to the political tone of my questions and abruptly terminated the interview.

“Look,” I said, “how can you end the interview? I own this iPhone. I’ll just start asking her questions again after you leave.”

And that, my loyal readers, is why I am now the proud owner of a Samsung Galaxy S III. Apparently this was covered on page 558 of Apple’s 1289 page “agreement” to which I so casually clicked “agree” during my iPhone 5 express setup. I think I also may have agreed to pay them a fee for the privilege of their placing me on Apple’s lifetime user ban.  Gotta love those guys at Apple. They’re so innovative. In fact, their creativity is downright infectious. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to get back to working on my chocolate covered bumblebee project.

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American Football Renamed “Handball”

Handball

I am as stubborn as the next guy.  Do I ever stop and ask for directions?  No.  Even when I’m hopelessly lost?  No.  Even running late to an important event?  No.  A wedding?  No.  A funeral?  Sorry, not going to happen.  Back when the United States was trying desperately to convert to the metric system, I was playing defense on the front line.  It was not going to happen.  Not on my watch.  We measure by feet, gallons and pounds.  Liters are for smarmy folks who prefer mineral water over tap water.  I am still duking the liter thing out.  I make a point of buying my soda in 12 and 16 ounce containers.  I scorn the half liters and the liter bottles.  In short, I am as set in my ways as any other red blooded, ethnocentric American.  I offer this proof of my loyalty to tradition, because I am about to commit sport’s fan heresy.  I may even need to enter the witness protection program, change my name, and get a nose job.

The title says it all.  It is indeed time for the US to man-up and join the rest of the civilized (and uncivilized) world in referring to the game Americans call soccer, by its more logical name, football.  Yes, I am fully aware that this would cause a domino effect.  We would need to rename our national sport (No, not baseball – wake up buddy; look at those empty stadium seats).  American football has little to do with feet.  In fact, it has as much to do with feet as soccer has to do with hands.  So, there you have it – we should rename American football “handball.”  (Now don’t start whining; the runner-up alternative name was my personal favorite, “concussion ball.”)  “But Jack,” you say, “shouldn’t we ask the Canadians?  They play American football too.”  No.  They’ll just need to get with the program.  It’s not real football anyway.  “But Jack, there is already a sport called handball.”  No, not really.  There are only three people who play handball, and I have already spoken to each one.  They were fine with it.  I gave them their choice of three new names: Palm ball, small ball, or wall ball.  They chose wall ball for obvious reasons.  When I mentioned to them that racquet ball players used walls too, almost in unison, they chuckled and whispered something in a derogatory tone under their breath.  Then they stared at me as if they had just eaten something sour.

And here is where you, my loyal readers, come in to play.  Although my audience includes readers from over 50 countries (a true and shocking fact—who would have imagined?), only a tornado-like social media revolution will rock my pig-headed brethren into even considering this modest and reasonable change.  (As a side note, it would be great for the American economy, like when Apple decided to screw everybody over by changing the plugin for the iPhone 5 and force us to buy new $20 chargers that cost Apple a negative one penny to produce, except here it would be sports apparel).  I know that both the American and the world football audience is out there.  In fact, I wrote a column titled “Stinky Football Fan Creates Chaos,” and loyal fans of Jocularious.com nearly burned up GoDaddy’s servers.  So I rest my case.  I’ve done my duty.  It’s now time for the world’s soccer fans to like, share and tweet this worthy cause to victory.  Let the handball revolution begin!

Don’t You Believe in Time Travel?

Welcome to Your Time Machine

If you don’t believe in time travel, and surprisingly, many people don’t, then you haven’t flown commercially in the last thirty years.  The next time you’re standing at the ticket counter schlepping around for your picture ID and trying to convince the agent that your check-in luggage doesn’t contain a tomahawk missile, look carefully.  That dinosaur of a computer the ticket agent is hammering away at is actually one of Steve Jobs’ original Apple computers, complete with attractive off-gray plastic shell and cathode ray tube.  The agent isn’t typing those bazillion key strokes to find your reservation, she’s killing time waiting for the tube to warm up.   The airlines rely on this cutting edge 1980’s technology in order to achieve the near impossible.  That is, of course, to ensure that thousands of times per day without fail at least fifty percent of all flights are massively overbooked.   No easy task.

Few other industries that rely on a reservation system would dare try to provide this consistent level of service.  Imagine if you will the restaurant industry employing this strategy.  Say you go to Rigatonie’s Italian for a nice spaghetti dinner and are waiting for your table, then the manager steps up to the little hostess podium.  “Attention everyone!” he announces.  “Unfortunately, Rigatonie’s has overbooked its tables this evening.  We are asking for volunteers willing to reschedule their dinners to another sitting.  We have one scheduled five hours from now at 1:00 a.m.  Volunteers will receive one complementary non-seafood appetizer.  We cannot begin seating until we have sufficient volunteers.  Thank you.”  Who else gets away with this?  Nonetheless, God bless ‘em, the airlines manage to achieve their quota, day after day.

The journey back in time continues after boarding.  Fun fact: Thanks to exceptional cooperation between Boeing and Airbus, the same factory in Hoboken, New Jersey, continues to manufacture the same tried and true seatbelts originally designed for the 1957 Chevy Bel Air.  Extra Fun Fact:  Boeing even installed these loyal safeguards of the sky in every Space Shuttle.  Both Boeing and Airbus like to brag that every time a passenger lifts up on one of the seatbelt clips, a union worker in Hoboken earns his wings.

Time to use the onboard lavatory?  The journey continues.  It’s a flying toilet museum.  I am, of course, referring to the peaceful comfort of being able to place a paper seat protector down on the toilet and turn “into position” without the fear of hearing an auto-flush engage and seeing your paper shield flash from sight.  Note to helpful engineers:  Some technology has reached its zenith.  Disengage from pioneering further “advancements.”

Nothing takes us back in time so much, however, as the state-of-the-art scratchy “plug-in sound” quality.  You see, the real joy of having the airline industry lie to us about the danger of low frequency radio waves during flight is that we are able to transport ourselves to a pre-World War II entertainment experience.  It’s Jack Benny on the talkie all over again.

Here’s the nut.  The next time you hear someone mention time travel, don’t mock them and call them a science fiction dweeb.  Time travel is alive and well.  And, unfortunately, if the airlines get their way, we’ll be enjoying this portal to the past for decades to come.  So too our children, and yes, even our children’s children.