14 August, 2008

We've Been Pronouncing It Wrong!


Some of you will recall that I've been obsessed with the answer to the question of Life, the Universe and Everything for some decades now. It is the very question which Douglas Adams' fictional computer, Deep Thought, was brilliantly and successfully invented to answer. Deep Thought's answer, though, was as inscrutable as the question itself.

Deep Thought told them the answer to the question of life, the universe, and everything was, "42."

The philosophical conniptions Mr. Adams imagined as a result of this one little answer filled a book and more.

But, you see, that's the very problem. Mr. Adams wrote a book, so we never got to hear the answer as spoken by Deep Thought its very self. Had we heard those words from its own sub-woofers, we'd have understood everything!

I was toodling along this afternoon when a car had to merge from two lanes over. It was an interesting car mostly in that it made a Mini-Cooper look like an SUV. I really hadn't previously realized you could make a roller skate street-legal, but the owner of this ... whatever it was .. obviously had looked the regs over a little more closely than me.

In fact, the roller skate could seat two people. I know this, because his license plate said so, plainly, for all the world to see, Four 2.

That was when I saw it. Or rather, heard it.

"For two."

Deep Thought never said, "Forty-two." He surely must have said, "For two" and some stenographer wrote it down in a messed up kind of shorthand that wasn't phonetically based like all rational shorthand must be, and we were left to pick up the pieces for all time. (And, of course, the world would not be here at all if it weren't for that mistake, but we'll not go there.)

Look at the universe around you and tell me it isn't for two!

Right down to the Creator and His bride. :-)


Lynne said...

Ok, cool with that .. except ..
what do we do with the trinity? :)

codepoke said...

I can only twist the poor man's words so far! :-)

But really, I could imagine in happy fantasy that Mr. Adams had started with the idea that life was "for two" and moved from there to 42, chuckling all along at how no one would make the connection.

tye-dye trinity said...

I am more interested in this street legal skateboard contraption you describe that could seat two people. I don't think I have seen anything quite that small on the road yet, as I am sure I would remember it too! Can you describe it further? I am truly interested!

Also, computers are highly overrated when they work in conjuction with humans.

Milly said...

The folks in my hood are trendy, we have a few of those little cars about.

I wonder if winding them up is hard?

codepoke said...

Tye-Dye, I had no idea what it was, but just because you're a great friend I looked it up. :-)

The ForTwo

(Its license plate was a leetification of its actual name. Little did I know.)

codepoke said...

I'm pretty sure, Milly, they come with extra rubberbands.

codepoke said...

And I gotta ask. After looking at that link, does anyone want to accuse me of exaggerating? Does the thing not make the mini look maxi?

codepoke said...

Hmmm. Should I suggest anyone search for, "fortwo crash test?"

tye-dye trinity said...

Oh my gosh! That thing is TINY! I don't think I could get my legs in there, let alone the rest of me, let alone anything else! I think I would make sure my life insurance was full paid up before I got in that thing and got on the open road!!!

Lynne said...

lol! to Milly .. but why do i picture winding it up with the key to a sardine can?

Milly said...

They are very small. I think I’d freak out on the highway. It would be great for a college town and for sure your kid won’t be stuffing twenty kids in that thing. Ok you can’t stuff twenty into a regular sized car ten is the max and they will only give you so many straws for one small drink at sonic drive in when you order a cherry pineapple Dr Pepper. So I’ve been told. ;-}

Good to know about the rubber bands and yepper if you break the key you can get a new one from the grocery store or the toy store.

Anonymous said...

dude...are you in love? =)

ps in europe the cars are so tiny you wouldnt believe.

Vanessa (im anonymous b/c Im such a loser I couldnt remember my user id)

Anonymous said...

Car guy here.

That car, as you've discovered, is a new to the US Smart ForTwo. Been in Europe for a long time. They park them nose-in two per spot in on street parallel parking there.

The problem is that they drive bad, perform bad, take premium gas, are relatively pricey (about the same as a 4-5 passenger Honda Fit) and don't get that great of gas mileage (33/41), considering what you give up. They should bring the diesel over, it gets something like 60 MPG highway I think.

They really don't make much sense unless you want to look like you're saving gas instead of actually saving gas. Check out this comparison.

As far as crash tests, they actually far well, especially considering their size. Much has been written about it, Google it and you'll see.

Oh, and that Mini in the cars.com comparo is actually the larger Mini Clubman. It's something like a foot longer than the regular mini. Sort of like a Mini wagon, or a maxi-mini. You should see the new Mini next to the old from the 60's.

karen said...

well, that's way cool!

Anonymous said...

There's a picture of new vs. old mini in this post.

codepoke said...

That's hilarious, Salguod!

I actually had to go find a picture for myself to make sure you weren't pulling my leg. But, yep. The Mini came to America and got fat.

Why am I surprised.