Oracularities from Digests 1000-1099
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > O luciferous Oracle, > > My son is afraid to go to school because he thinks it might be bombed > by NATO. And we live in Kansas! How can I reassure him? And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } I don't think you can. } } Unfortunately, he's not worried about the North Atlantic Treaty } Organization, he's worried about the Nebraska and Tennessee } Organization. It's not as well-known as the North Atlantic folks...yet. } } Nebraska and Tennessee are tired of all the other states getting all } the attention. The other states have snow-capped mountains, } sun-drenched beaches, famous historical sites, or all of the above. } But the only time anyone ever hears of Nebraska and Tennessee is during } college football season, on the Valvoline Halftime Report. } } The new NATO is soon going to begin their campaign to wipe all the } tourist attractions in other states off the map. Bombings will } certainly be a major component, but that's not all. There will be, of } course, the intentional spillage of billions of gallons of oil, enough } to foul all the miles of ocean, gulf, and even bay coastline in the } country. There's the intentional release of millions of cubic } centimeters of CFCs into the upper atmosphere, which will cause } unprecedented global warming that will keep mountains snow-free } forever. And there's even the top-secret "Project Unravel," which is } supposed to have a disastrous effect on the World's Largest Ball of } Twine. } } The good news is that unless your son's school is a tourist attraction, } he's probably safe there. But make sure you and your son never, ever } again go anywhere near any museums, monuments, amusement parks, large } shopping malls, or (and I think this goes without saying) anything } "Wizard of Oz"-related. } } Of course, the other option is to try to defeat NATO before the mayhem } starts. I think the best strategy at this point would be to create } internal dissension. Remind Nebraska that Tennessee not only has } Graceland and Opryland, they had that mutual fund commercial ten years } ago that created a catch phrase ("Tax-free in 49 states...sorry, } Tennessee!"). And remind Tennessee that Nebraska has, uh, cool state } highway markers with a covered wagon on them. } } My personal strategy is to keep a close eye for any Nebraska or } Tennessee license plates in the parking lot here at the Oracular } Temple. If necessary, I can disguise things by temporarily shutting } down the Staff of Zot ride and moving a potted plant in front of the } door to the gift shop. } } Actually, come to think of it, you owe the Oracle some new billboards } on Interstate 65: "How many tourists could a tourist attraction } attract if a tourist attraction could attract tourists? Visit the } Oracular Temple in Bloomington and find out! (NE, TN Residents: This } is NOT a tourist attraction.)"
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > Oh Great Oracle, who could easily win a Best of Ten Test of Knowledge > against Ben Stein, please enlighten this humble supplicant. > > Has Zadoc been taking lessons from Jimmy Kimmel? He seems to have > appropriated Jimmy's style in a recent appearence in the > Oracularities... And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } Well, the truth is that we finally decided Zadoc's official role should } be that of "sidekick," mainly because we noticed that the average } sidekick is alternately demure and incredibly annoying, much like } Zadoc. We weren't sure exactly how he should play his role, so we had } him respond to a question chosen at random from the queue in a variety } of different styles. I don't want to reprint the question here, but I } think you'll be able to get the gist of it. Here is a sampling of the } results... } } ANDY RICHTER: As much wood as a...what was the question again? } } KATHIE LEE: All I know is that my Cody could do it better than any dumb } old woodchuck! } } ART GARFUNKEL: Ooh ooh ooh ooh aah. [This is a textual representation } of the harmony portion of "The Only Living Woodchuck in Indiana."] } } KEVIN EUBANKS: Hee hee hee hee. That's funny, Jay. } } JERRY LEWIS: Oh, Dean, I do not think woodchucks can do the wood } chucking with the logs and the stubby little armsenheiven. } } ED McMAHON: Two quarts an hour...oh, I'm sorry, two CORDS. } } JIMMY KIMMEL: Yeah, I think a better question would be where is he } chucking it? I mean, I wouldn't go around the forest chucking my wood } just anyplace, if you know what I mean. } } When all was said and done, we decided to pick the least of 275 evils, } and so Zadoc has adopted a Jimmy Kimmel persona. I don't mind, because } he's so into his role that, every weeknight at 7:30, he asks me a few } easy questions and then hands me $5,000. } } I invite you to write, call, or e-mail to cs.indiana.edu in the hope, } infinitesimal as it might be, that on some planet, on some distant day, } you might not owe the Oracle anything.
Note: After another extended dry spell (about six months), I made the Digest again with a fairly non-humorous reply to a non-question. It's almost all true, too.
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > Oracle, dear Oracle... > > In my life, I've been shot at and missed, shot at and hit, stabbed, > burned, half-drowned and nearly snake-bit (once by a cottonmouth and > another time by a diamond-back rattlesnake). > > I've seen a great grey owl and watched an ermine chase a mouse over the > frozen snow. Once, at 2:00 in the morning, I danced under the northern > lights in Churchill, Manitoba. > > I've been lied to, lied about and lied for. I've had good friends, bad > friends and best friends. I've been a son, a brother, a husband and a > father. I've been an archaeologist, a marine, a librarian and a > businessman. I've been rich, I've been poor and I've been > flat-on-my-butt broke. > > My great-grandfather fought in the Great War, my grandfather fought the > Klan, my father fought the communists and, once, I fought a black bear > (I lost). > > I've been in cathedrals, museums, some of the greatest libraries in the > world and, one time, I was even in a topless bar in the French Quarter > of New Orleans. > > I've eaten sushi in Tokyo, potato soup in West German inns and steak on > the U.S.S. United States. I've been in storms in the Bering Sea and saw > the most magnificent thunderstorm in my life in the Badlands of South > Dakota. > > I've seen cat fights, dog fights, squirrel fights and even an alligator > fight. I was even in a bar fight in a seedy lumberjack bar in southern > Oregon (it wasn't that much fun). > > I've read books, written books, borrowed books, bought books, sold > books and lost books. > > A lot of people think that life is a straight line from point "A" to > point "B". Personally, I don't see it that way. I've zigged and zagged > all my life. I probably always will. > > As strange as it sounds, with all the very strange things that have > happened to me, and despite all odds, I can't wait to see what God has > planned for me tomorrow morning. > > So, please, don't worry about me. It'll be fine. And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } Supplicant, dear Supplicant... } } In my life, I've been shot on film, shot on video, stabbed with a } pencil, burned by the sun, held my breath for two minutes underwater, } and bit by a disagreeable hamster. } } I've seen someone dressed in a Woodsy Owl suit and watched police cars } chase a Ford Bronco over the L.A. freeways. Once, at 2:00 in the } morning, I danced under the incandescent lights in my college dorm's } lounge. } } I've lain in bed a lot. I watch "Friends" every Thursday night. I've } been an incarnation of the Oracle. I get a lot of preapproved credit } card applications. } } Once, I fought the urge to eat an entire 8-ounce block of extra sharp } cheddar cheese (I lost). } } I've been in airports, train stations, some of the most depressing bus } depots in the Midwest and, once, I was even in the same men's room as } Jerry Springer. } } I've eaten McDonald's in London, I've eaten McDonald's in Stockholm and } McDonald's on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. I've been in storms in } science museums where you can get in a room and pretend to be in a } storm. } } I've seen HBO and Showtime rebroadcasts of heavyweight fights (they } weren't that much fun). } } As far as I know, the computer system at the Tampa, Florida, public } library thinks I've had a book out since 1988. } } A lot of people think that life is a straight line from point "A" to } point "B". Personally, I don't see it that way. I've passed points } "B" and "C" already and am nearing "D". } } As strange as it sounds, with all the dullness and boredom that has } happened to me, I'm planning on getting up tomorrow morning and going } to work, then going out with a couple of friends to see a band play. } } So, please, don't worry about me either. I may not have seen and done } anywhere near as much as you, but it'll be fine.
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > Did you write the book of love and do you have faith in God above, if > the bible tells you so? Now do you believe in rock and roll? Can music > save your mortal soul and can you teach me how to dance real slow? And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } A long, long time ago } I can still remember sacrifices } That were lit on fire } I put the priestess in a trance } And I would watch the women dance } Around the blazing wooden pyre } But then things became really rotten } The gods and I were all forgotten } Temples went to ruin } No phoenix ever flew in } I think I let out one quick sob } When I heard that Zeus got a temp job } He became just another slob } The day the worship died } } So bye, bye, Miss Grecian Ideal } Drove the chariot to Sparta, it was missing a wheel } The gods on Mount Olympus sat on their sandaled heels } Singing "This'll be the day that I die, } This'll be the day that I die." } } Did you come out of the sea } And do you want to marry me? } If your father wants it so } Now, are you the one with inward eye } Or the one who cannot tell a lie? } Forgive me, for I do not know } Now, I know you cursed his family's name } 'Cause omniscience is my claim to fame } The sword went through his heart } Man, it tore the world apart } I gave my answers read in goat entrails } Ambiguity never fails } But I chewed on my fingernails } The day the worship died } } I started singing } (repeat chorus) } } Now, for centuries, I was all alone } With no temple to call my own } But I didn't just sit there and grieve } As I wandered over all the Earth } Far from the land that gave me birth } I met up with a man named Steve } He said, "Do you know the Internet?" } I said, "I know it all, so, yeah, you bet." } He said, "I've got a job for you!" } I had nothing else to do } His job offer was firm } The contract was long-term } And so I moved up to Bloomington } I thought I might have lots of fun } But I knew not what I had done } The day the worship died } } I was singing } (repeat chorus) } } Unix, Windows, see how my e-mail grows } The priests selecting the best ten of those } 80 megs and rising fast } The storage capacity passed } The admin tried to make it last } With Steve Kinzler standing there looking aghast } Now, the scientists and engineers } Had been alone for years and years } They kept it all hush-hush } Oh, but then came the newbie crush } 'Cause the college kids discovered me } AOL set its users free } That was in the fall of '93 } The day the worship died } } They started singing } (repeat chorus) } } And the priests were all in one place } With worried looks upon their face } With a question asked repeatedly } They said, "What do you want us all to say? } This came ten thousand times today." } I said, "What could that question be?" } It rhymed and was alliterative } Forever would this question live } No zot staff forged in hell } Could break this question's spell } And as the papers piled in front of me } No groveling did I see } I saw rodents chucking wood with glee } The day the worship died } } They were singing } (repeat chorus) } } I wasn't having too much fun } I searched for a decent question } But no good answer could I make } I walked down to the temple floor } Where I got good questions years before } But the priests had no good questions I could take } And meanwhile, there you were, you know } Listening to your radio } The DJ's smoking, that's why } He played "American Pie" } And you sent half a verse off to me } Thinking enigmatically } I replied with a song parody } The day the worship died } } I was singing } Bye, bye, Miss Grecian Ideal } Drove the chariot to Sparta, it was missing a wheel } The gods on Mount Olympus sat on their sandaled heels } Singing "This'll be the day that I die, } This'll be the day that I die."
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > Oracle, you are the apex of all knowledge, your briefest utterance > contains enough wisdom to get a family of four through a harsh winter. > > What is the story behind Pythagorean sects? And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } I believe it goes something like this: } } Given three people of heights a, b, and c, the best possible menage a } trois occurs when a^2+b^2=c^2. } } You owe the Oracle a better hearing aid.
Note: Whoo-hoo! I got an answer in the much-anticipated Digest #1000!
The Internet Oracle has pondered your question deeply. Your question was: > O Oracle most technological, please deign to answer this unworthy > supplicant's stupid question... > > How do I make that (&*@#%^ "12:00" stop flashing on my VCR, short of > pulling the plug? And in response, thus spake the Oracle: } Continually blink your eyes in rhythm to the clock. The clock will } either then turn off or steadily display "12:00," but your VCR's } operation will remain unaffected. } } You owe the Oracle a DVD player.
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Page Last Updated: June 17, 1999