Monday, January 30, 2012

Mind Games: Instant Wealth

I play a lot of these little games in my head. I call them mind games, because they take place only in the mind, but that phrase has some negative connotations so I'm open to other names.

One of the simplest ones is the classic "what would you do with an exorbitant amount of money?" I tend to set the number at around $100,000,000 because it's possible to get that via the lottery, and it's enough money that you could do some truly obscene stuff with it. Most of my answer is practical and fairly meager for one hundred million dollars, it's probably all within the bounds of one million dollars. That's not the point of this game though, it's a lot more fun if you think of the question as "what would you do if you had to waste an exorbitant amount of money?" When you're playing the game this way it's basically a Brewster's millions scenario. You need to spend all of that money, and not really gain anything from it. My answer for a long time was that I would get some very obscure songs into rock-band. To this day I still want them to release all of Alice's Restaurant as one track, twenty minutes long, with no bass and no drums.

I was playing this game again this morning while showering and generally making myself presentable (presentable in this case is defined in the terms of a male college student in their twenties.) I thought about it, and eventually I found a good answer. I would hire black-water, and the various other private security mercenaries out there, and have them serve as the defense force for Occupy Wall Street. I'm not sure what would happen, but I'm willing to bet the fictional amount of money we're dealing with that it would be interesting.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Story of the Monk and his Goat

I've been thinking about this blog recently, and I decided that I want to try and write something every day. I make no promises to the quality or the length of the content, but we shall see.

Today I want to tell you the story of the monk and his goat.

There was once an elder monk, very advanced in his monastery, who would go out into the fields and chant. This is back in the days before monks would carry prayer beads to count their chants. Instead they would get two bowls, fill one with nuts or rocks or something, and move one of these objects to the other bowl with each chant, so they could keep track of how many times they did the chant. Since he was going out into the fields anyway he would bring his goat. The goat was a great boon to the monks, but it was a cocky animal that made a mess of many things. While he was chanting the goat would knock over the bowls, and the monk would lose track of his chanting. So the monk got a large stick, planted it in the ground, and tied the goat to it. In this way he could do his chanting uninterrupted.

The younger monks saw this, and they understood that their elder would always chant next to a tied up goat. So they began to go into the fields, bringing goats and sticks, and would plant themselves next to a tied up goat before doing their chants, since this was clearly part of the practice.