Strangers sharing a table, sharing a meal…

❝ Jamario Howard was sitting with his friends Jamychol and Tae at a barbecue joint in Oxford, Alabama, waiting for food, when he noticed an elderly woman sitting alone.

“My first thought was ‘dang I’d hate to have to eat alone,'” he told CNN. So he went over and asked her if he could sit with her.

❝ The woman said yes, and after they talked for a while Howard found out she had lost her husband and the day after would have been their 60th anniversary.

“I instantly gave my condolences and asked her to come eat with us,” Howard said. “She was excited to do so.”

❝ Howard shared a picture of the heartwarming moment, which happened April 18, on Facebook. It went viral with more than 44,000 shares.

RTFA for details and commentary. I imagine, I hope, my reaction isn’t out of the ordinary. The spirit of good will is still alive and well among ordinary folks in this land. Regardless of what we feel about the corrupt and self-serving example set by our fake president and the political class he represents.

Twitter CEO explains to Trump his follower count might fall as they delete spam accounts and bots

❝ Much of a closed-door meeting between President Donald Trump and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey on Tuesday focused on Trump’s fears that the social platform might be deleting his followers for political reasons…

Dorsey told Trump that the president might be losing followers over Twitter’s efforts to delete fake and automated accounts

❝ Trump has long claimed without evidence that the largest social-media services are politically biased against conservatives.

Earlier Tuesday, he tweeted that his follower count would be “much higher” than 100 million if Twitter “wasn’t playing their political games.” He added that Congress should intervene.

“They don’t treat me well as a Republican,” Trump said. “Very discriminatory.”

He’s lucky they don’t just settle for treating him as the village idiot. With a lot of people who follow around idiots because they believe idiot blather and lies.

And Dorsey? Well, someone has to explain to the kiddies when they get old enough – about the Tooth Fairy.

5G – as it’s being rolled out – won’t transform much of anything

A blog post by Neville Ray, CTO of T-Mobile USA

❝ 5G is at the height of the hype curve right now…and there’s also a lot of misinformation. I’m not going to add to either…And when it’s ready for our customers…in a way that allows us to bring the benefits of 5G to the whole country…We are going to get it right.

I wish I could say the same for the rest of the industry. But with the 5G path the other guys are on – what I’m calling the status quo – we will not see the transformational power this technology has to completely change EVERY industry. And that’s not good enough…

Verizon’s mmWave-only 5G plan is only for the few. And it will never reach rural America. Meanwhile, AT&T has rolled out a “5GE” icon to customers phones to dupe them into thinking their same-old 4G LTE service is something new and different (spoiler alert: it’s not)…

❝ Some of this is physics – millimeter wave (mmWave) spectrum has great potential in terms of speed and capacity, but it doesn’t travel far from the cell site and doesn’t penetrate materials at all. It will never materially scale beyond small pockets of 5G hotspots in dense urban environments.

Yes, we’re all being hyped by the buzzwords. Something like “Make America Great Again” for cellphones. RTFA to get a grasp of the questions that haven’t been answered well enough to bring this faster technology to everyone.

And there’s more…

❝ 5G is the “fifth generation” of wireless networks. It will cover a wide range of devices, including both mobile and fixed network infrastructure, i.e. both mobile smartphones, wearables and settled machines will be wireless. So does that mean in future we will need no fiber cables running around?

❝ Beneath the surface of the world’s wireless infrastructure lies a big net interwoven by the fiber optic cables. And at present 90% of all internet traffic travels over wireline fiber, even if it finally terminates in a wireless device. 5G is targeted at a connection speed of 1-10 Gbps, which is ten to hundred times higher than 4G. The overwhelming traffic to data centers will demand a transport media that is capable of high bandwidth and long distance, and fiber is the best future-proof choice among all mediums…

We won’t receiving 5G anything under most circumstances if it wasn’t delivered by fibre-optic cables to be broadcast in the first place.

Personally, my best hope is that cable providers bringing most of us existing broadband access capable of 4K movies and the 5K and 8K to follow…will have the smarts to compete and offer matching speeds at affordable prices. Technically, they can already step up to that standard across a lot of the map. They simply aren’t being pressed by sufficient competition to care to do that. Capitalism 101, 2nd semester.

He gets job after copper gives him a ride to interview – instead of a ticket


Photo courtesy of Ka’Shawn Baldwin

❝ An Illinois man starts a new job Tuesday and he has a police officer to thank for getting him to his interview.

Ka’Shawn Baldwin, of East St. Louis, was pulled over Wednesday in Cahokia by officer Roger Gemoules for allegedly having expired license plates. Baldwin also did not have a valid driver’s license…

❝ “The routine thing is to tow the car and take the person to jail who is driving the car,” Baldwin said.

He told the officer that he did not have any other way to get to his interview at an area FedEx facility and that’s why he was driving illegally.

❝ Gemoules explained to Baldwin that the car could not be driven any further.

With no other option, Baldwin then asked the officer if he would give him a ride to his interview. To his surprise, Baldwin said Gemoules followed him home where he parked the car and took him to his interview.

❝ Gemoules said he could tell Baldwin really wanted the job.

“He was polite when I pulled him over and he seemed like a good young man, so I wanted to give him a chance,” Gemoules told NBC affiliate KSDK in St. Louis. “I knew if I gave him a bunch of tickets and towed his car, it would be tough to recover from.”

RTFA for more of the details. And, yes, as often as we have to blog about some creepy racist cop there are folks with a badge who are ahead of that curveball. Gotta get the right one is all. 🙂

Finland’s Hobbyhorse Girls


Dmitry Kostyukov for The New York Times

❝ For years, a subculture of teenage hobbyhorse enthusiasts flourished under the radar. Now the craze is a national export, and a celebration of girlhood

❝ It is impossible to say exactly when the Finnish hobbyhorse craze began, because it spread for years under the radar before adults became aware of it.

In 2012, a filmmaker, Selma Vilhunen, stumbled across internet discussion boards used by hobbyhorse enthusiasts and was enraptured…

❝ Teenage girls had invented a form of hobbyhorse dressage, in which the rider’s lower body pranced and galloped like a horse, while her upper body remained erect and motionless like a rider. This evolved into an elaborate network of coaches and students and competitions, but it was discussed only online, for the most part.

“It was like a secret society,” Ms. Vilhunen said…

My sister would have loved this when she was a girl. And, eventually, her daughters. No doubt.

So-called church offers miracle cure. Feel like drinking bleach?!


Industrial Bleach for $20 – what a bargain!

❝ A group calling itself Genesis II Church of Health and Healing plans to convene at a hotel resort in Washington state [last] Saturday to promote a “miracle cure” that claims to cure 95% of all diseases in the world by making adults and children, including infants, drink industrial bleach.

The group is inviting members of the public through Facebook to attend what they call their “effective alternative healing” at the Icicle Village Resort in Leavenworth on Saturday morning. The organizer of the event, Tom Merry, has publicized the event on his personal Facebook page by telling people that learning how to consume the bleach “could save your life, or the life of a loved one sent home to die”.

❝ The “church” is asking attendants of the meeting to “donate” $450 each, or $800 per couple, in exchange for receiving membership to the organization as well as packages of the bleach, which they call “sacraments”. The chemical is referred to as MMS, or “miracle mineral solution or supplement”, and participants are promised they will acquire “the knowledge to help heal many people of this world’s terrible diseases”.

There was a time early on in my life when I spent a significant amount of time in the company of juvenile delinquents. During that period I met a number of “adult” crooks and hustlers. Not as adept as, say, pimps for our fake president; but, still – they loved religious hustles. For the same reasons religious hustlers always do. Built-in cover as some kind of True Believer. Ready and willing to accept every penny they could grab from the gullible.