I’m having a weird feeling dizzy feeling. For my brother-in-law, I found a geeky gift. I want to turn him into a true geek someday so our bonding will be complete, but he’s not there yet. He’s too intellectual still and can recite poems and Homer’s Iliad by heart. Stop it; let me find you an enticing gadget so your brain turns to jelly just like mine.
For Christmas this year, I gave him a Swiss Army knife with a USB port. Very geeky; before I mailed it I was already gleefully rubbing my hands together in anticipation of this next step of his geekdom. And then I read this Backfence article by James Lileks:
My wife gave me a Swiss Army Knife USB Flash Memory stick. Looks like a tiny Swiss Army Knife, but instead of a blade it has 128MB of memory. Yes, I know: very useful for those times when you’re stuck in the middle of nowhere in a blizzard with a can of beans but no opener. “Hey, I have a Swiss Army Knife with 128MB of memory! If I could get to a nearby village, I could download some bean recipes!” True, but we still couldn’t open the can. Unless you also got a can opener. “I could download some Web sites that sell can openers! Compare prices! Get the best deal!”
Not that useful, in Swiss Army Knife terms. But this was not a silly gift; I’d loudly hinted that it would be a great gift idea. Why not? It also came with a small knife, in case you needed to defend yourself against hobbits, and a toothpick. Very geeky. Very cool. It worked for a day, then it died, my data still clutched in its cold Swiss hand.
Defend youself against hobbits? In a odd twist, my sister (his wife), gave me the extended edition of the third installment of the Lord of the Rings. So while I am being attacked by the hobbits, my brother-in-law has the defensive weapon. I’m doomed.
In completely unrelated news, every 5 or 10 minutes at work I hear this weird buzzing noise. It sounds like that high pitched insect noise from the old Star Trek series (episode 68, “Wink of an Eye,” in case any geeks are reading this). I can’t seem to locate it, and I wonder if my brain has a short.
There. There it is again. Bzzzz.