Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Entropy For The Entire Family

Or ... the late night ruminations of stray cats prepping for the holidays

Entropy, for those of us who opted to do drugs and carouse with crazed, exquisitely uninhibited females rather than finish our high school homework assignment on thermodynamics,  is an unassailable physical law regarding the inevitable disintegration of functioning systems in time.

All systems, in other words, from the biggest (the universe) to the smallest (the quantum fluctuations that enable the cells of our bodies to maintain the integrity required for life) are driving on a one-way street towards ultimate breakdown.   Order  t>  Disorder.   No U-turns allowed.  No refunds.  No trying to go retrograde when you think nobody's looking.

The ultimate end zone of entropy is considered achieving a state of complete equilibrium, no further heat exchange possible (much like a Japanese house in winter), the potential for generating any further useful information nil (think of the current U.S. government).

Fortunately, even entropy entertains a sense of irony  (the official term is entropic irony).

We exist (in varying degrees and to the extent we are willing to take the concept of existence at all seriously) because of entropy. Within the current state of the universe's rush towards icy oblivion are the optimal conditions to support the fragile, living ecosystem of planet Earth. We are, in a sense, tapping into chaos, harnessing the ongoing disintegration to create a tiny, albeit temporary pocket of order.  We are, in other words ...

Living On Entropy

The human mind, presumed still functional for at least a small percentage of the global population, flies directly in the face of entropy. Even the dumbest, most reactionary thoughts are anti-entropic in nature (Tea Party members take heart). Not to mention that ...

Entropy Can Be Fun

Consider insanity, by one definition essentially an amplification of  entropy within the brain.
And yet by all accounts the insane majority is having much more fun than the sane minority. The sane are often too terrified of all the insanity raging around them to even leave the house.
Therapists, those at least willing to make house calls, advise their sane patients to get over themselves, hop aboard the crazy entropy train and start enjoying life while it lasts.
Needless to say, there are numerous examples of ...

 Entropy Being Employed To Make Life More Interesting & Zany

*Many of China's cites are currently encased in an unrelenting, lethal smog. Not to worry. The spin doctors at the Ministry of Entropic Disinformation have published a list of reasons why the ongoing smog is actually good for the Chinese public. Things like ...

The deadly smog promotes solidarity
It reminds the people that everyone is equal
It is a happy sign of China's growing industrial might
It makes people funnier (remove masks to laugh only at your own risk)

*In the edgy Disneyland satire state known as North Korea, exalted chubby-boy leader Kim Jung Un has began purging senior Party functionaries, including members of his own family. The official explanation is that these "depraved" individuals have not been clapping fast enough at party events (the accepted minimum rate is 100 distinct claps per 60 seconds).

Kim's elderly uncle, whose military style hat is so large that satellite surveillance photos often mistake it for a nuclear reactor under construction, offered the excuse that the inevitable entropy of his aging body has rendered him incapable of maintaining that level of clapping. This was dismissed as yet another example of insidious "Capitalist Propaganda" and the old geezer was reportedly shot.

*An overweight newlywed in Colorado pushes her equally overweight husband off a cliff, claims ...

"Entropy Made Me Do It!"

*A fourth grader in Georgia sets his teacher on fire while she's writing the formula for the Second Law of Thermodynamics on the blackboard, claims a video game made him do it. Besides, science is boring.

A congressional sub-committee has already launched an investigation, based on the supposition that violent video games promote entropy in young children. Tea Party member asserts that teaching science breeds sociopaths.  "Video games don't maim and kill people, physics does!"

Meanwhile, the cats are howling outside the window, warming up to sing the songs of the ...

 Winter Solstice

Happy Holidays To All!


Monday, December 2, 2013

Ask The Dog / A Brief, Occasionally Sordid Q & A With The Mentally Challenged

Q: When is a bit not a byte?

Ans. When it's a nibble.

Not to be confused with a bite to eat.
As in:  Care for a bite?
           Maybe just a bit, you know, something to nibble.

Q: The word nibble is curiously similar to the word nipple. Is there any verifiable linguistic and/or semantic link between the two?

Ans: Aside from the fact that throughout all of recorded human time the nipple has been an irresistible object of those bent on nibbling, absolutely none.   

Q:  Why do I always feel depressed this time of year?

Ans. 1:  Hey, who doesn't?

Ans. 2:  Basically, it's all in your head. Chemistry, as they say, rules the roost.

A renowned scientist is a wheelchair once said:  'Our entire existence is electrochemically determined from birth, but as doing the math corresponding to the vastly complex neuronal interactions in the brain is beyond even my big brain, the illusion of free will is maintained.'
Of course, he was more or less compelled to say this. 

Ans. 3:  SAD.

Hardly credible, you say. By definition, a depressive is generally incapable of any emotional response, sad or happy, valid or otherwise.

Not sad, you nincompoop,  S.A.D., as in Seasonally Affected Disorder, often manifest as an irrational fear of winter.

So you're suggesting I'm not only depressed, but also some sort of fearful phobic?

Slightly redundant, but yes.  You're a fear-mongering, afraid-of-his-own-shadow, scaredy-cat, phobic depressive. You're also beginning to annoy me.

Ans. 4: Christmas music; its month-long, non-stop, all-pervasive proliferation.
Seriously, how many times can you be subjected to Bing Crosby singing White Christmas before the only thing you want to do for the holidays is strangle Santa Claus?

Q: My girlfriend and I have been going through a rough patch. What can I get her for Christmas to let her know I still care?

(Okay, talk about making the top ten list of cliches you never want to hear again as long as you live. The Rough Patch. Frequently employed in TV cop shows, after a body turns up, cops naturally suspect the boyfriend / girlfriend / spouse, always begin their interrogation by saying, "Sorry to ask, but how was your relationship with the deceased?"  The invariable response:  "I don't deny we've been going through a bit of a rough patch, but things were definitely getting better.")
 Unless you are referring to a minor skin irritation, Please stop using this expression.

Ans:  Give her a free pass to sleep with other guys. Your 'rough patch' is to her most likely a brain-numbing, energy-sucking, beyond all hope, existential dead end. She's looking to replace you, and this will enable her to do a bit of comparison shopping without having to be constrained by conventional feelings of guilt. The upside is that even as you become little more than a vague memory as a lover, she will continue to refer to you as a friend.

Stay tuned for  Ask The Dog / Part 2