Inducing Worms

An impedance match made in heaven. At the risk of plagiarizing Yours Truly, no rigorous, systemic analysis of an entire can of worms would be complete without a proper discussion of the principles of induction, which is beyond the scope of this monologue. While worms are only rarely inducted into halls of fame or similarly red-carpeted venues, there are other ways to accomplish social transformation without risking the ire of patent attorneys.

I'm referring, of course, to the new-school methodology of bringing old-fangled mechanical contraptions into lockstep with yesterday's electrical contrivances. Here, the humble transformer comes to mind, lending an air of quasimodern urbanity to the worm conveyor discussed in Craig's patent application.

Clearly, the problem of impedance-matching an invertebrate coiled at the top requires a nontrivial solution; throwing a wrench into the worm's gears causes unwanted sparking, and should be avoided. Instead, an equal but opposite invertebrateby which I mean coiled at the bottominstalled 180 degrees out of phase with his or her wormy partner will cancel uninvited magnetic fields, thus leaving more food for paying guests.


Dits and Dots and Polyglots

Yes, this is a cryptographic. It isn't every day I have the luxury of disassembling what, on the surface, may appear to be a statement of horror and despair at one or more of my monologues. While the true intent of a phrase such as "I wanted to claw my eyes out" is relatively obvious, there are other ways of saying the same thing that call for a rigorous, systemic analysis of the entire can of worms. This is of particular importance where brainy psychologists are doing the phrasing, because if there's one thing you don't want to take responsibility for, it's a brainy psychologist with clawed-out eyes.

Below, please find an actual, unretouched metamessage from a dear someone who recently blundered into the writing project commonly referred to as Omegaword. I don't think the writer was turned into a pillar of salt, because salt pillars lack the faculties required to send email.

"I just read through some of your compositions............ummm wow."

At first, I dismissed the dot trail as the predictable result of a household pet nesting on the keyboard, but closer inspection suggested a more deliberate intent, not unlike what one might expect to hear from the speaker of a shortwave receiver tuned to a maritime frequency, where the dits and dahs of a bygone era form the foregone conclusions of effective long-distance communication. As I knelt to count the dots, years of cryptographic analyses allowed me to make mincemeat of the cipher, thus exposing the true underbelly of its intent.

By itself, the letter S is certainly nothing to sneeze at, but multiplied by twelve it becomes the executive expression of a dozen, which is exactly the sort of quantity favored by those who make donuts for the folks at SETI. As you will recall, the speed of light imposes harsh sanctions on space-travelling objects, so a dozen donuts feels like a snack by the time the message pulls into the driveway here on planet Earth. Divided by three, the twelve become four groups of dits, which is to say, the letter S repeated four times in order to form the sound of air escaping from Mr. Morse's bicycle tire.

Having thus put the metamessage's preamble in its proper place, I was ready to move on to the second third of the puzzle. This is where years of cryptographic analyses make no difference whatsoever, because if there's one thing they never taught us in grammar school, it's the proper pronunciation of the triple-m configuration when a vowel is blocking the rear exit. A dozen donuts later, I didn't care about this segment of the puzzle anymore.

Arriving at the third third, I immediately recognized the upside downity of the classic inversion scheme used by Nostradamus to obstruct the view. In any case, it's plain that the last word in the metamessage is simply standing on its head. Mom used to do that, too, when she wanted a donut.



it was my creation
it was your creation
our minds made it
with everything we know
how to fetch
and where we go
to eat
our words
and our music
the microphone is on
the camera is on
how many satellites
will you sleep with tonight?


Preemptive Rhetoric

Rhetorical answers.

If the rhetorical question anticipates no answer, the rhetorical answer denies having been asked.

A: Doughy.
Q: Do you know how long it's been since I had one of those?

A: Canada by rail.
Q: Are you still up?

A: Stop making sense.
Q: Why?

A: This can mean only one thing.
Q: Where were you in '62?

A: Browbeaten.
Q: Do you know Jack?

Thus, the process is streamlined by answering first, and asking questions later.