Code, nerd culture and humor from Greg Knauss.

Bug fixes due for the Knauss card in Blogtrumps 2.0:

  • Correct the text that claims late bandwagon-jumper was "the first blogger."

  • Reduce the numbers by an order of magnitude, to represent actual ability.

  • Accurately reflect the weight removed from caricature by too-nice Pixelflo guys.

Things I Don't Understand:

  • Cigars

  • Rage Against the Machine

  • Coffee fetishism

  • Golf

  • Tricked-out cars

  • Anime

  • Mass-manufactured collectibles

During the Super Bowl, a Verizon ad showed a woman recieving a text message on her cell phone while at a crowded music festival. "cute couple," it said.

To actually type that on a keypad, you'd have enter "22288[Pause]833122266688755533." Without a mistake. During a concert. On borderline-microscopic buttons.

Boy, these young people today sure know how to have fun.

Tom is two years old today -- two years. I don't see how that's possible, given that he was born, oh, five or six weeks ago.

That wooshing sound is my life going by.

Why do you post the articles that get reject from other magazines on your site?

Because, Lord, if I actually manage to squeeze something out of my poor, dead brain I'm damned well going to make use of it.

I'd rather have it published in something that people read, but if an editor lets his "common sense" or "good taste" get in the way, then I'll happily dump it on eod.com.

While Joanne visits her dad in the hospital, I'm on kid duty, wrangling Tom and Mike. They're bored and cranky in the minivan, threatening rebellion, and while I'm tempted to just turn them loose in the parking lot, it doesn't seem like the sort of thing responsible parents do.

So I load Mike into the Baby Bjorn -- a kind of kangaroo pouch for infants -- and put Tom on my shoulders and we go walking around the grounds, looking almost exactly like an ambulatory totem pole and startling innocent people.

It's hard to tell who this amuses more.

A couple of years ago, Joanne and I took a vacation to Canada. We flew to Seattle, rented a car and drove all around the western half of the country, from Vancouver up through Banff. Towards the end of the trip, I was zooming along some random Canadian highway -- they use that kooky metric system thing up there, so I've got no idea how fast I was actually going -- when a man suddenly stepped off the shoulder directly in front of me, into the middle of my lane.

I think I said, "Eep."

As I bore down on him at something like seven thousand cubits per deciliter, he -- very authoritatively -- pointed his hands at me then at the shoulder, twice, in two sharp, sweeping motions. As I roared by, he deftly stepped out of the way and I noticed that he was wearing a uniform. He was a cop. Apparently actually chasing down speeders is too sedate for the thrill-seeking Canadian fuzz.

I pulled over and he came trotting up and asked for all my papers. I handed them over and he began filling out the ticket.

"Hey," I said. "How, um, do I pay this? Can I just sent dollars? I mean, American dollars? Real dollars?"

"Where are you folks from?" he said.

"The U.S.," I offered helpfully. "Ah. Los Angeles."

"Do you visit often?" he asked.

"Oh, no," I said. "This is our first trip. We're just tourists."

He tore the ticket out of his book and handed it to me. "Then I'd just forget about it," he said. "Don't bother. You'll have a record in Canada, but if you never come back..." He then nodded and headed back to bush he must have been hiding behind, to scare the crap out of the next guy to come by.

Those Canadians. They must be new at this law-enforcement thing. (Second item.)

When the creators of Plastic.com were casting about for partners, they carefully evaluated the Web's television sites, ranked each by their quality, then accidentally chose TeeVee off the bottom of the list and put us in charge of the TV section.

Things fall apart.

Plans, friendships, schedules, jobs, lives, loves, bodies -- things fall apart.

Joanne's dad moved out of the ICU today and into a rehab facility, still paralyzed from the neck down and still without a real diagnosis. He woke up one morning four weeks ago and by noon he couldn't move. The doctors have no idea why. Transverse myelitis -- more of a generic catchall than a disease -- is what they're calling it, but that's only because they're out of ideas. "Sometimes these things happen," one of his doctors told me, matter-of-fact.

Things fall apart.

But they're not supposed to. The world isn't supposed to work that way. There are explanations, causal relationships, reasons. If you pick at something long enough, you're supposed to be able to find out where it comes from, what it is, how it works. It's the foundation of a predictable world and the only thing that keeps any of us attached to the planet, that keeps us all from going mad. Why plan, why save, why do anything for the future if the whole world could disappear tomorrow, could come collapsing down around our heads for no reason at all, leaving us with nothing but regret and wasted time?

But God or Fate or Nature or whatever you choose to call it doesn't give a crap about our tiny notions of order, our tiny needs. A healthy man is reduced to blinking out answers to yes-or-no questions, without trauma or cause? So be it. It's all entropy anyway -- chaos, the helter-skelter spin of atoms, all without a sense of justice or of mercy.

Things fall apart.

So you either accept it and give up and let the whole goddamned mess lie in pieces around you, or you take one small corner of the universe -- one piece of paper, one room, one relationship -- and offer up some resistance to the eternal collapse of things.

So screw you, entropy. Screw you, God or Fate or Nature. I'm going to take my pathetic little stand and I'm going to fight you in every way I can. Knock things down, tear out the walls, break the rules, I don't care. I'm still going to pick up what pieces can be salvaged and rebuild. I'll cry when I need to cry and scream when I need to scream, but the rest of the time, I'm going to be jig-sawing the debris. Maybe it won't amount to anything, but I'll be damned if I'm going to be beaten by arbitrary capriciousness.

Things fall apart. But that doesn't mean they can't be put back together.

Hi there! My name's GREG KNAUSS and I like to make things.

Some of those things are software (like Romantimatic and Buzz Clock), Web sites (like the Webby-nominated Metababy and The American People) and stories (for Web sites like Suck and Fray, print magazines like Worth and Macworld, and books like "Things I Learned About My Dad" and "Rainy Day Fun and Games for Toddler and Total Bastard").

My e-mail address is greg@eod.com. I'd love to hear from you!

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