Halos & Pitchforks: Part 3


Since it’s been, oh, about two and a half years since I’ve handed down judgments of good n’ evil to various entities, technological developments, and what-have-you, I thought it was high time I posted another edition…

Halos to my new Chromium browser for handling PDFs very well, without destabilizing.  Pitchforks to the same when (I strongly suspect, but can’t yet prove) it (possibly) blacks out my laptop screen, a problem for which there is no recovery other than to forcibly power the machine down and bring it back up.  From scratch.

Halos to the researchers identifying medicinal components of fruits, vegetables, and herbs.  Bonus points for also identifying the biochemical pathways in which they work in the human body.  Pitchforks to the FDA, who busts healthcare practitioners and supplement companies for reporting these health benefits on their websites (and other literature).

Halos to the tourists who descend (or ascend, depending on which geographical direction they’re coming from) upon our town with courtesy and at least basic knowledge of where they’re going.  Pitchforks to the idiots–from here or not–for driving like idiots or failing to map out at least a rudimentary gameplan.  Google Maps is free, y’all, and don’t tell me that in 2014 America, you don’t have a broadband connection.  Also, just because you’re on vacation, that doesn’t mean everyone else is; other people have places to go, too, and you’re not more important than they are.

Pitchforks to Safari, the on-board internet browser that should work seamlessly on my system.  No halos here, just pitchforks, these days.

Pitchforks to those who douse themselves in perfume.  Just because your nose doesn’t work anymore, doesn’t mean you don’t give others around you instant headaches or upset stomachs or a serious case of fatigue.  Bonus pitchfork prongs to those who insist upon practicing this nasty habit in enclosed spaces, such as elevators, or in sensitive spaces, such as doctors’ offices.  No halo to be had here, either.

Halos to the new iPhone (I just upgraded from the iPhone 4 to the iPhone 5) before the software “upgrade” to iOS 8.1.1; it came with a bunch of new features, excellent graphic resolution, and much higher-quality photographic capability.  It also worked screaming fast.  Pitchforks to the “upgrade” to iOS 8.1.1; since the upgrade, the whole phone hangs/freezes a lot, especially the Facebook app.  iOS Safari usually follows, and I’ve had to reset the phone more times than I care to.  I spend an amazing amount of time eyerolling now, while waiting for the damn thing to un-freeze.

Halos to the Libertarians, who are getting their names and platforms out to the mainstream, and taking the time to intelligently clarify their stances, dispel myths, and generally educate the public.  Halos also go to those who vote for them, even if it’s in principle only, odds be damned.  Pitchforks to those who claim to think Libertarian but then go vote Republican, fearing the Libertarians will lose (they will, but with cowardly thought like that, you’re simply ensuring that they’ll keep losing, with no chance of ever winning).  Vote your freaking conscience; anything else is truly a wasted vote, even if the guy you voted for wins.

Halos to the Great State (Nation) of Texas.  Just for being Texas.  Pitchforks, though, to the state-level computers that are not integrated well–namely, the voting database, the motor vehicle database, and the Texas Board of Chiropractic Examiners (TBCE).  Pitchforks also go to the TBCE for allowing you to update your address and other info on their website, but not allowing it to “count” as a “real” update, requiring you to send your updated info to them, in writing, by mail, or fining you for neglecting to do so.  And no, they don’t warn you about this when allowing you to update that info on their website; they don’t say “by the way, you must send this to us in writing in order for it to be official.”  WTF?  Can we all just allow you to enter something in online (with security questions/measures, of course), and if you enter it in one database, it talks to the others so that you only have to do it once?  Pleeeease?

Halos to Zorba’s, the Arabic Meditarranean restaurant across the street, who always gives great, prompt, pleasant service, remembers what you like, and plays Persian pop music videos.  No pitchforks here.

No, I’ll save those pitchforks for the USDA and FDA, which are about to approve GMO grass, for Christ’s sake, so that even our grass-fed beef is no longer a slam-dunk safe option.  Gah.

Halos to Europe for being a bit more forward-thinking in many areas–banning harmful chemicals (especially from body care products), banning GMOs entirely, and creating lots of space for parks and communal areas.  Pitchforks to the American developers, who swallow huge chunks of beautiful land and then cram McMansions onto them, leaving no space for kids to play or people to relax and hang out.  Pitchforks, too, to people who want to idolize Europe but fail to walk the walk, living 2 hours from where they work and stopping at the McDonald’s drive-through on their way home.  Jesus.

And since ’tis the season, halos go to Christians who truly understand Jesus and what he stood for and Christians who understand that Christmas, while a major holiday, is not the only winter holiday.  Pitchforks go out to those who justify their bigotry or narrow-minded viewpoints or greedy tendencies or attempt to control the behavior of others based on their Christian faith.  Log out of the retarded Facebook groups and other web-based (or other) debates and actually research who Jesus was.  From a non-Christian, factual, unbiased source.  I think that what you learn may surprise you, and if you have any integrity at all, it will change those viewpoints.  More pitchforks to who insist upon “Merry Christmas” only, as though there are no other major holidays like Hanukkah, Yule/Solstice, etc.

Halos to non-Christians who wish strangers a Merry Christmas without getting all bent-out-of-shape.  Pitchforks to those who make us non-Christians all look bad by shoving their own philosophy in others’ faces.  Nobody needs that.  Pitchforks also go to stores who ban the phrase “Merry Christmas”, despite the fact that it’s primarily Christians off of whom they’re generating all their revenue.

Halos to those who stayed home on Thanksgiving and bonus points to those who either opted out of shopping, or shopped from home on the internet, or went shopping during reasonable shopping hours.  Pitchforks to the idiots who made asses of themselves by camping out on the store sidewalks in the wee hours before Black Friday (thus dissolving the sacredness of Thanksgiving family time).

Halos go to the stores who remained closed during Thanksgiving and Christmas to allow their employees time with their families, etc.  Pitchforks to the stores who cater to those idiots by opening at obscenely early times on Friday morning (or, even worse, opening on Thanksgiving Day!)  Back in the day, senior management, Thanksgiving and Christmas were sacred.  You were guaranteed to have those days with your families.  And now you’re robbing the upcoming generation (your children and their children, I might add) of the ability to enjoy the same time your bosses allowed you.  I know this goes against the Christmas spirit and all, but Fuck you.

Halos in advance to the urgent-line-calls-that-aren’t-actually-urgent that will not bother me while I’m on vacation.

If you’re feeling nostalgic…

Halos & Pitchforks, Part 1
Halos & Pitchforks, Part 2

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