Joel Klebanoff: Stuff & Nonsense

To worry is to be. To be is to worry.

5 Wealth-Generation Rules

There are just five rules you need to know to earn imaginable wealth. Just five.

Unfortunately, I don’t know any of them. Not one. In fact, I can’t even imagine what any of them might be.

So, if that’s what you are looking for, look elsewhere. If your email inflow is anything like mine, the spam that fills up your email inbox might be a good place to start. Just don’t hold me responsible if the recommendations presented there don’t pan out.

OK, maybe it’s six rules. Or four. Or one hundred. Or one. How the hell should I know? I just made it up. But making stuff up doesn’t seem to be an impediment to presenting yourself as an expert these days—including making up the “fact” that you’re an expert; or the “fact” that Internet-based (including email) so-called “experts” routinely make stuff up.


Shocking Secrets Women Don’t Want Me to Know

An email arrived in my inbox today with the subject line, “Shocking Secrets Women Don’t Want You To Know.” In it, the sender, whom the “from” line tells me is named Michael (I won’t provide his last name because Michael might want to keep his likely fictitious name a secret), informed me that he “recently discovered an absolutely GUARANTEED method for getting ANY woman into your bed.” (The emphasis via capitalization was Michael’s, not mine.)

The email went on to encourage me to click a link to discover the secret in a free video.

The fact that I found this offer to be exceptionally enticing probably says something not terribly flattering about me, but for the life of me I can’t imagine what.

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Sole Mates

I have what I think is a brilliant idea for an innovative web-based business. Notwithstanding my extreme angst over the risk of having the concept stolen by one unscrupulous jerk or another—or maybe both of them simultaneously, I want to put the notion out there for a crowd-sourced evaluation. Here it is: an online dating service for socks. Or, rather, an online sock match-up service.

I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of single socks in my sock drawer that have been waiting years for a match. Their reprobate spouses—what heels—snuck out by still undetermined means and left them for parts unknown. Those unknown parts are possibly feet, but who knows what parts on which those wastrels might be found? If they return, before giving them pride of place on my feet, I’ll certainly check them for DNA residue.

I don’t have the heart to put my abandoned socks out of their misery by throwing them in the garbage lest their long-lost mates—or, in the case of over-the-calf socks, lost long mates—realize the error of their ways and return to their better halves. (Clearly better as they aren’t the ones who deserted their partners.)

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Incomprehensible Contrasts: Gaza/17

Scientists have searched for years and billions of dollars have been expended, but there is still no cure for AIDS. There are drugs that can turn it into a chronic disease rather than a near-term death sentence. However, that is not a cure. As I understand it, it’s a life sentence of a brutal, rigorous drug regimen. But the search continues and hope persists.

On July 17, 2014, a few AIDS researchers, including a leading researcher, and AIDS activists were flying to an AIDS conference in Australia. As they were over south-eastern Ukraine, someone, or maybe a group of people, about 33,000 feet below them made a decision that ended their lives.

At time of writing, the details were not definitively known, but it appears that pro-Russian Ukrainian separatists fired an anti-aircraft missile that brought down Malaysia Airlines flight 17, killing everyone onboard. There is some speculation that the rebels mistook the plane for a military craft, but even if that’s true they still, with intent, shot down a plane with the known effect that, if they were successful (and they were), they most likely would (and did) kill the people onboard.

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Narrow Mindedness

I contend that most of us are narrow minded.

As I wrote the previous sentence I had a vision of the fingers of the majority of the few people who come here immediately pouncing on their keyboards to pound out an exceptionally fervent agreement or disagreement with that statement. Or maybe they’ll get defensive and pen a personal repudiation.

Prove me wrong. Please wait until you finish reading this post before spouting your response.

First, notice that I said, “narrow minded,” not “narrow-minded.” I left out the hyphen intentionally. The reason for the missing hyphen is that I’m not talking about narrow-mindedness, i.e. the unwillingness to listen to or tolerate other people’s views. What I am talking about here is my belief that our minds are comfortable contemplating only a very narrow band of most physical scales.

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 There are, to say the absolutely very least, a great many phenomena in the universe that I find to be imponderable; at least not ponderable in any more than purely superficial, meaningful way. Other people may find it possible to not just ponder some of them deeply and meaningfully, but also actually understand them. I don’t.

The following is an infinitesimal sampling—just the top three at the top of my mind now; others may make my top-three list at other times—of what I find imponderable:

The Universe: Infinitely Finite?

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A Certain History?

A riddle recently raced across my mind, pausing in its journey through the dust it found there only long enough for me to jot it down. I found the riddle interesting. You, on the other hand, may find it boring, nonsensical and/or irrelevant and curse me for once again wasting your time by babbling childish drivel. (Once again, that is, if you’ve been here before; for the first time if not.)

Solving this riddle will not cure any dread diseases, end poverty or bring peace to the Middle East, or anywhere else for that matter. Nevertheless, for the benefit of simply satisfying my curiosity, I would appreciate an answer if anyone has one.

Here’s the riddle: Can we ever be truly sure that what we think we know for certain about historical events is indeed the truth?

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The Improbability of You

Here’s a notion that lodged in my brain recently: You are astronomically unlikely. To be clear, I don’t mean specifically you. I mean each of us, with us being everyone alive now, everyone who has ever lived, and everyone who will ever be born. In short, I’m referring to everyone ever.

What nonsense am I spouting now? Here’s what:

You are the result of a single sperm from your father (your biological father, of course, which may or may not be the man you think is your biological father; only your mother knows for sure, and maybe not even her if she was particularly promiscuous) fertilizing a single egg from your biological mother.

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