Category Archives: Various

Hackenblog: Whatever happened to the dayjob?

“Another British company advertised for “a call-centre Ninja, a superhero in people”, a job description which sounds a little over-the-top for what was in fact a role at an insurance broker in Isleworth. Lest you think that ad was an aberration, Indeed also featured jobs for “a black-belt prioritisation ninja”, and another demanding a “ninja-like attention to detail”. Short of turning up for the interview dressed from head-to-toe in black, and then sneaking up behind the managing director at his desk, it is hard to see how candidates could demonstrate their ninja-ness.”
, Economist, July 6, 2019

Not all of us get to have our jobs be our careers, let alone vocations, alas.

America, we’ve lost Mad Magazine

Let’s not lose Jason Yungbluth, artist extraordinaire, genius creator of Weapon Brown, and, alas, lately occasionally employed by the late Mad Magazine.

So let’s give the guy some money www.whatisdeepfried.com/subscribe so he can keep doing that thing that he does so well. I have a dayjob so I’m giving him $5/month. I’d be afraid for any dayjob Jason might get, so please, dig deep into the couch cushions and give, if not for Jason, then for the small businesses and corporations of America. Or something.

Anyway.

Let’s keep America great with brilliantly drawn horrible cartoons. America, let’s help Jason over the hump, or whatever it is, between Mad Magazine’s demise and his website’s solvency. He said something about the website supporting itself later this year, and I’m sure it will. Like the Joker, Jason Yungbluth is a man of his woooooooooooord.

Here’s how I feel about Jason Yungbluth.

Yeah, baby, yeah.

Word of the times: Himpathy

“There are other ways to wage a social struggle on the lexical front. Inventing a word is one; Ms Manne has written about “himpathy”, which she uses to describe outbreaks of disproportionate concern for the future of a man accused of harassment, rape or other violence towards women. The term is pointed and memorable, and is spreading online.”
How to change a word’s meaning
, The Economist, June 22, 2019

Not bad as shorthand goes.

A Mayerson Service Announcement

Our favorite publisher, the Wapshott Press, is now an Amazon Charity. Yay! So if you could please choose Wapshott Press as your charity when you’re shopping at Amazon, it will help them to keep publishing awesome books and journals. Here’s the link to make Wapshott Press your charity, and you only have to register once.

Help the Wapshott Press publish books that should be published! The Wapshott Press is now a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. Tax deductible donations can be made here: Wapshott Press Donations and thank you so much for your support! (PS. Paypal takes zero commissions from your donation to the Wapshott Press.)

Drug smuggling on the internet

“A multinational police force last week arrested eight men on suspicion of running a secret online store called “The Farmer’s Market” that sold more than $1 million worth of narcotics, including LSD, ecstasy, fentanyl, mescaline, ketamine, DMT, and high-end marijuana.

“According to a 66-page, 12-count indictment that was unsealed last Monday, The Farmer’s Market provided a fully functional e-commerce experience, including a storefront, order forms, online forums, customer service, and various payment methods for the different sources of supply.”
Tor-hidden online narcotics store, ‘The Farmer’s Market’, brought down in multinational sting, by Lisa Vaas, Naked Security, April 23, 2012

And I thought I was making that up. Well, it’s more drug smuggling than e-commerce in Electricland. But still… What will those crazy kids think up next? I’m afraid to find out.

Gamers Unlock AIDS Protein

“In just three weeks, gamers deciphered the structure of a key protein in the development of AIDS that has stumped scientists for years. According to a study published Sunday in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, the findings could present a significant breakthrough for AIDS and HIV research.

“Using an online game called Foldit, players were able to predict the structure of a protein called retroviral protease, an enzyme that plays a critical role in the way HIV multiplies. Unlocking the build of the protein could theoretically aid scientists in developing drugs that would stop protease from spreading.”
Gamers Unlock Protein Mystery That Baffled AIDS Researchers For Years, by Leslie Horn, PCmag.com, September 19, 2011

Gamers for good!

Why I live in Los Angeles

Because I like the part I live in and I can’t afford to live in Paris, Berlin or Warsaw. But also…

“Also, crucially: The Age of Innocence’s lack of diversity is an illusion. The book is entirely about the moment the barriers broke down—when the roiling masses started to gain cultural traction and define the city, when Society surrendered its capital S. It’s a portrait of the moment that created the city we know today.

“None of which should obscure the fact that the book is just flat-out great fiction, with one of the most perfectly melancholy endings you will ever have the excruciating good fortune to suffer through. It will, in other words, break your heart in the end, just as New York inevitably will.”
Greatest (NYC) Novel Ever, by Sam Anderson, NY Magazine, January 9, 2011

Now that I think about it, I can’t afford to live in New York either. Oh well. Guess I’ll have to suffer through another 70F winter on the Pacific.

Shameless J Frey

“But a little literary criticism wasn’t going to slow Frey down. As New York magazine reported in November, Frey has created Full Fathom Five, a company that recruits young MFA students to co-write novels with him — for as little as $500, $250 or even nothing — in hopes of sharing in the profits of their eventual blockbuster sale. The writing duties fell almost completely to the young writers: Frey would provide story ideas, writing guidance or polishing, and the connections to get the work published and in the right hands.

If it sounds suspiciously like a scam, Frey can show it’s not. “I Am Number Four,” co-written by Frey and recent Columbia MFA grad Jobie Hughes, under the pseudonym Pittacus Lore, was published in the fall of 2010. And that’s not all: It was subject to a film-rights bidding war, and the movie is being produced by Michael Bay and Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks Studios.

“The film version of ‘I Am Number Four’ is due in theaters Feb. 18. Its latest trailer is above.

“Honestly, I don’t get it. But Michael Bay brought us “Transformers,” and I didn’t get that either. Take a look — is James Frey’s fiction factory farm working? What do you think?”
The first fruit of James Frey’s fiction factory, by Carolyn Kellogg, LA Times, January 3, 2011

Words, they fail me.

Author Econ 101 (alas)

“New authors often have the misconception that they will sell a million books and be wealthy for the rest of their lives. But the book is just the beginning; authors shouldn’t put all their eggs in one basket—better to use the egg to hatch more golden egg-laying geese. One book can lead to a product line and multiple streams of residual income.”
Income Streams for Authors, by Irene Watson, SellingBooks.com, September 25, 2010