Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, March 22, 2017

  • For the first time in a long time, I drank an ICEE. As a child, the only times they were a possibility was when we took a road trip to Fort Worth and stopped at K-Mart where they were available in the snack bar. At the time, no ICEEs or Slurpees were available in Mineral Wells and there wasn’t even a McDonald’s. Slush Puppies were available, but they always seemed second-tier. And now I’m reminded of Dr. Evil, “You’re semi-evil. You’re quasi-evil. You’re the margarine of evil. You’re the Diet Coke of evil, just one calorie, not evil enough.
  • Spring Training – BoyGeeding had his first tee-ball practice of the season yesterday. His team is the Thunder and he’s #2.
  • The higher number of windows opened on my computer the higher my stress is for that given day.
  • Not that anyone is happy paying taxes, but I wonder what most folks are “happy” their taxes go to – public schools, national defense, [insert polarizing item here], etc.
  • I’m not sure my friend Andy likes this idea of a circular or “endless” runway.
  • Japan’s elderly offered funeral discount to stop driving
  • It’s Buc-ee’s V. Bucky’s In Convenience Store Battle – A longtime truce between the two convenience store chains has been challenged by Bucky’s moving into Buc-ee’s territory.
  • Adam Sandler Had This to Say About Seagoville, Texas Residents – Near Dallas
    • During a radio interview this morning, Hollywood actor Adam Sandler took a moment to praise Seagoville, Texas residents – a small town just outside of Dallas – who had helped him with a mechanical issue with his rental car as he passed through the city recently
    • I’m telling you, these people in Seagoville are the real deal. I’m going to move there after I retire,” Sandler said with a laugh. Sandler added later, “You have to understand, this is something that would’ve never happened in L.A.! So yeah, that’s my story about Seagoville, Texas. It’s nice to know there are still places like this in America.”
  • It saddens me he dodged the question – A Senator Asked Neil Gorsuch If He’d Rather Fight a Horse-Sized Duck or 100 Duck-Sized Horses
  • VICE – The Contentious Relationship Between Evangelicals and Hollywood – While Christian films like ‘The Shack’ are scoring big at the box office, they also incite the ire of true believers.
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8 Responses to Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, March 22, 2017

  1. Ben W. says:

    Gorsuch has two daughters, aged 18 & 16. I have conversations with my 16 & 9 year old like that all the time. One of our favorite family games is "Would You Rather." I don't know if that means that Gorsuch is out of touch with his kids, or if I lack the temperament to be on SCOTUS. (Regardless, I love our wacky family conversations, so I'll just stick with what's working.)

  2. Triple Fake says:

    While most people would be interested in his response, and the reasoning behind it, that doesn't seem like an appropriate question during a confirmation hearing. Were they on a break, or what?
    Is that going to figure into any of his decisions on SCOTUS cases? Or affect the confirmation vote? Thinking on one's feet isn't part of the job description. It's something you would ask a guest on a talk show.
    (For the record: 100 duck-sized horses. A duck-sized duck can be mean as hell. A giant duck would be really big trouble!)

    • Ben W. says:

      The question came from Sen. Flake (apropos, right?), the junior GOP senator from Arizona. He said he had asked his family what questions they thought he should ask Gorsuch, and that was what his teenage son came up with. At first, I thought it was ridiculous, too. And, to be fair, it probably is, but a moment of levity in the midst of hours of intensity is good for everyone involved, IMO.

      And then I thought about mental dexterity and being able to analyze new, unexpected information, and how that reflects a person's thinking abilities, and it didn't bother me so much. In a former career, I was a hiring supervisor for a state agency, responsible for hiring front-line customer service representatives. These folks have to be able to take whatever the customer throws at them, process that in terms of the multi-layer, multi-faceted programs we administered, and come up with a reasonable response. It was a tough job.

      We had a pretty well-defined script that we followed for our job interviews. But one question that I added was the seemingly nonsensical question of, "If you could be any inanimate object, what would you be, and why?" Seems dumb, and it was a lighthearted final question to ask. But after hearing dozens of answers, it became increasingly revealing. The responses were generally something practical like a car (to help people get around) or a house (to keep people safe and sheltered). Or sometimes they were artistic, like a piano or a canvas. But every now and then someone would freeze up and literally name something in the room (like a pencil or a table). Those were never satisfying answers, because it gave me an ever-so-slight glimpse into that person's ability (or inability) to deal with an unforeseen question. Long story to make this point: to me, it can be beneficial to see how a person handles something unexpected.

      Gorsuch, with his "I'm at a loss for words" response, didn't exactly pass that test for me. And I agree with you – it's not a job that requires thinking on your feet. But it requires a heck of a lot of dealing with applying what you know to new concepts/ideas/questions, so I sure wish he had come up with something. Of course, you have to factor in the whole "everything I say is going to get raked over the coals and scrutinized to the Nth degree" line of thinking, so I'd probably be reluctant to say anything, either.

      • Towski says:

        The 100 ducks thing is common on Reddit, where the question is often asked of various celebrities doing AMA's. (Ask me Anything). My guess is that's where the teenage son got it.

      • Bryan says:

        My boss asks everyone he interviews (we often interview people together) some variation on "what do you like to do in your spare time?" or "what's your favorite movie/tv show?". His reasoning is that it gives you a little insight into the person's personality or, at the least, spurs some off-topic discussion that can give you the same insight. At the very least, I've found that it relaxes the person being interviewed to a large degree.

        As for Gorsuch dodging the question, maybe he worried about relaxing too much and being accused of not respecting the dignity and gravity of the position for which he's being confirmed? I like my government officials to be human and have a little personality, but that doesn't fly with everyone.

        • Ben W. says:

          Yeah, Gorsuch was definitely between a rock and a hard place. Regardless of how he responded, he would take heat from one side or the other. As a SCOTUS nominee, it's better to stay quiet and seem dull than to seem human and cause a furor over a nonsense question/answer.

  3. Andy says:

    I wonder if the crackpot behind the Endless Runway has talked to any actual pilots. They typically line up with a normal runway at least a few miles away and then carefully descent toward a clear touchdown point. If the ceiling and/or visibility are low, ground-based navigational aids guide them toward that spot. Once they have the runway in sight, they can drift a bit farther down the runway if needed, but they're still going in a straight line. Making pilots land on a circular runway would require them to be turning while landing, adding challenge and complexity. Also, the limiting factor for most airport capacity is separation requirements between aircraft, not crosswind limitations. Sigh.

  4. RPM says:

    Yeah, that circular runway would require every take off and landing to be in yaw. Runways never get slick in bad weather.

    Not. Good.

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