Saturday, July 10, 2010

"Tape on, brother"

I needed a laugh after the last few days, and I got it this morning with a letter to the editor in the San Francisco Chronicle.  Since the Chron doesn't let you link individual letters, just the letters page, I'm taking the liberty of pasting the whole thing here, with full credit and thanks to the paper and Mr. Mark Knego of San Francisco:

Recording is reality

Get it on tape, man.
We live in a world filled with knuckleheads, on a planet called Earth. Knuckleheads like to enjoy other people's suffering.
Somebody gets shot on a BART platform, get it on tape.
Knuckleheads destroy public property, get it on tape.
Somebody beats up somebody else, get it on tape. Put it on the Net.
In an entirely related topic, astrophysicist Stephen Hawking says that aliens are coming to colonize us.
No way, baby, not after they see the tapes.
We are safe.
Tape on, brother, tape on.
Mark Knego, San Francisco


  1. The flip side being that the aliens see through video evidence how violent we are as a lifeform and out of self preservation they try to exterminate us. (I've seen too many bad Science Fiction movies)

  2. I've never understood why sci-fi buffs think respective "worlds" will be in any way compatible. Isn't it just as likely that--like white men carrying diseases to the indians--we'll trade germs or chemical poisons? If there are aliens "out there" looking for a place to explore, and they actually make it here, they'd be so much more advanced than us that they'd regard us as unwelcome specimens, ripe for extinction.

    Have you seen District Nine? If not, check it out. It's a sci-fi comedy that's intelligent and unsettling, set in (of all places) South Africa.

    Poor Mehserle. One mistake and the rest of his life down the toilet. An eye for an eye. Great. That really makes everything better------NOT!

  3. @Curtis - of course it's just as likely. It's even more likely that aliens, if any, will find oxygen poisonous (who knows what's growing in the methane swamps on Saturn's moons?), or be based on a non-carbon chemistry.

    I haven't seen District Nine - my tastes in movies are lamentably low. I like simpleminded movies with happy endings. I've read the reviews.

    You're right about Mehserle; but the Greeks would have understood his situation. There are several Greek tragedies, starting with Oedipus Rex, about people who did what seemed like the right thing at the time and destroyed their entire lives...

    @gilag - You remind me of a decades-old speculation that we've never been contacted by aliens because our planet is surrounded by an expanding shell of analog radio and television broadcasts from the first part of the 20th century, everything from Amos 'n' Andy and Stella Dallas to Milton Berle and Sid Caesar. The aliens watch our old shows and decide they don't want to come here.