What is there to say? I'm not very interesting. I'm not a good writer. I don't even dress well. If you insist on knowing something about me just wander through the archives. It's all there.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

On warnings without enough information

“Objects in the mirror are closer than they appear”
Exactly how does this information help me? How much closer are they? If the information provided by this mirror is that unrealistic and unreliable, why do I even have that mirror? Wouldn’t it be safer if the mirror worked the other way and the objects were actually farther away from my car?

“The State of California has determined that an ingredient in this product has been shown to cause cancer”
Which ingredient? Is it the one that comprises 96% of the active ingredients or the .001% component? If the State of California has made this determination, what have the other states concluded? Perhaps, Montana thinks it only causes sterility, but in New Jersey it just gives you a healthy glow. Do these side effects actually change when I cross state lines?

I understand what the little walking man means on the crosswalk light. I understand the red hand means that I should not cross. What does the flashing red hand mean? Get out of the crosswalk or you will be slapped? What about the flashing man? Is it just a bad pun for us urban dwellers? Or does it mean that I should feel ambivalent about needing to cross the street at all?

Why does the light on your car say, “Check Engine”? It should say, “Spend a lot of money to retrieve an obscure code from the car’s computer that means that your gas cap is loose”. It would be a more accurate warning, but probably wouldn’t fit on the dashboard. The real question is, "why don’t they simply invent a better gas cap?"

Lastly, I swear that every time I hear this warning on a television commercial, I have to wonder. What I really want to know is if I have an erection that lasts for more than four hours without taking any pills, do I still need to seek medical attention or can I just feel very proud of myself?

While I’m on the subject, the “Terrorist Alert” was yellow today . . .


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