Friday, May 8, 2009


Bob and I had a most wonderful date night. From it I can make two recommendations.
The first, if you have the chance to see This American Life live (or the rebroadcast, as we went to) then by all means, GO DO IT. It's funny, and it's a throwback to the heyday of radio. He keeps his equipment on the desk with him, including his musical interludes and it's fascinating to watch him jump back and forth between them.
By him I mean Ira Glass, for those of you who aren't in to TAL.
It was a very funny show with some of their trademark poignant moments that, if listened to every week, grow to be more sappy than a point of connection. It's their trademark and I understand that's why they use it, but tragically funny irony can only be dealt with in small doses by most people. I'm most people.
The second recommendation is that should you find yourself near King of Prussia and hungry, or craving Italian, or really wanting some terribly awesome spumoni, then find a place to park near Maggiano's and GO. We had a wonderful meal with a great waitress and freshly made sauces. I had pesto that reminded me of what it tasted like 5 minutes out of the garden, in to a blender and on to freshly cooked pasta. I can also speak from tasting Bob's dinner that the lobster ravioli is good. So is the toasted pound cake and their spumoni. I was almost sad to leave it half-eaten, but I was stuffed at that point.
On our way home from these fantastic adventures, we were discussing the 6th season of the X-Files and I realized I couldn't remember the name of the actor who had taken over the male lead. I did remember that he was the T-1000 in T2. And since we decided to stop off and get a few items at the grocery store, there would be no rapid access to the internet for us to answer this question. I knew it would nag at me until this happened, so I decided to go with the latest in cell phone gimmickry, the KGB team.
First off, let me tell you that using the service is nowhere near as much fun as the commercials make it out to be. If you're near anything with an internet connection, a human input device and a screen, it is rendered obsolete. Smartphones destroy it's functionality as well. But for those of us plebians out on the town either too drunk or too poor to leap on the mobile internet on our phones (or who, god forbid, don't have web enabled phones at all) it's not a bad thing to have. But aside from that, before you use the service you must interact with two separate emails granting them permission to charge you a dollar every time you want to win a bet.
It could become potentially lucrative if you're knowledgeable, your friends are drunk often, and the bet is for more than one dollar barring unforeseen difficulties, which we are getting to.
Having had to delete two posts now about agreeing to hand over a dollar each time I had to admit I couldn't remember something, I waited for the answer as we walked in the parking lot to the door of Wegman's.
Now, the problem is that I wanted the name of the actor. Apparently KGB is told to take things very literally. Because what I typed was "Who the heck was the liquid metal terminator in Terminator 2?"
To me that would seem to say hey, who played him? But that's because I might've been a touch drunk from datenight complete with a mimosa and an Italian coffee with amaretto as a chaser.
what I got back was "The liquid metal terminator was the newer, more deadly T1000 model. kgb_team"
And I swore because we were now at the front door to the supermarket and the fuckers had taken my dollar and not actually answered my question.
I retyped it while we travelled through the fruit section, making sure to not just use the word actor, but also put it in all caps this time. "Who was the ACTOR who played T1000 in Terminator 2?"
I secretly prayed it went to the same person who got my prior question so they could see my irritation at having to clarify at the cost of another dollar.
About two minutes later as we were perusing Mom's day cards, I got a second answer. Robert Patrick. It vaguely echoed around in my mind and made sense.
Final verdict? It was momentarily amusing, but the driving necessity of expense to be painstakingly exact in detailing what information you're looking for ruined the novelty pretty quickly. I'd be lying if I didn't say I was really irritated at spending two dollars for an answer, but I'm guessing this is probably part of how they pay their crack team of knowledge-finders.
After that little interlude I have this mental image of rows and rows of converted Chinese gold farmers hitting Google for info, answering hundreds of thousands of questions every minute. They get a break every 4 hours to go take a drink of water and go to the restroom, combining the two to save time if necessary.
Anyway, I am amused by this thought.

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