Breck Carter
Last modified: December 20, 1996
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The fRiDaY File, for December 20

New York Fruitcake

From the Famous Kitchens of Su Hackett and John Strano

1.) Sample the whiskey to check for quality.

2.) Take a large bowl. Check the whiskey again. To be sure it's the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.

3.) Repeat.

4.) Turn on the electric mixer, beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar and beat again.

5.) Make sure the whiskey is still okay. Cry another tup.

7.) Turn off the mixer. Beat two leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit.

12#= Mix on the tuner. If the fired druit gets stuck in the beaterers, pry it loose with a drewscriver.

@^&&) Sample the whiskey to check for tonsisticity.

12,966> Next, sift two cups of salt. Or something. Who cares?

&%##{ Check the whiskey.

2.) Now sift the lemon juice and strain your nuts. Add one table. Spoon. Of sugar or something. Whatever you can find. Grease the oven.

44\ Turn the cake tin to 350 degrees. Don't forget to beat off the turner.

'' Throw the bowl out of the window. Check the whiskey again and go to bed.

Happily Addicted to the Web

(to the tune of "Winter Wonderland")

Doorbell rings, I'm not list'nin',
From my mouth, drool is glist'nin',
I'm happy -- although
My boss let me go --
Happily addicted to the Web.
All night long, I sit clicking,
Unaware time is ticking,
There's beard on my cheek,
Same clothes for a week,
Happily addicted to the Web.

Friends come by; they shake me,
Saying, "Yo, man!
Don't you know tonight's the senior prom?"
With a listless shrug, I mutter, "No, man;
I just discovered letterman-dot-com!"

I don't phone, don't send faxes,
Don't go out, don't pay taxes,
Who cares if someday
They drag me away?
I'm happily addicted to the Web!

Word Watch


In-flight Magazine Syndrome, as when the boss comes back from a trip and asks you to build a Java thin client data mart on the extranet.

Puns 'R' Us

A group of chess enthusiasts had checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse.

"But why?", they asked, as they moved off.

"Because," he said, "I can't stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer."

Christmas Movie Watch

What Hollywood Can Teach Us About Computers

  1. Word processors never display a cursor.

  2. You never have to use the space-bar when typing long sentences.

  3. All monitors display 2 inch high letters.

  4. High-tech computers, such as those used by NASA, the CIA, or some such governmental institution, have easy-to-understand graphical interfaces.

  5. Those that don't will have incredibly powerful text-based command shells that can correctly understand and execute commands typed in plain English.

  6. Corollary: You can gain access to any information you want by simply typing "ACCESS ALL OF THE SECRET FILES" on any keyboard.

  7. Likewise, you can infect a computer with a destructive virus by simply typing "UPLOAD VIRUS." Viruses cause temperatures in computers, just like they do in humans. After a while, smoke billows out of disk drives and monitors.

  8. All computers are connected. You can access the information on the villain's desktop computer, even if it's turned off.

  9. Powerful computers beep whenever you press a key or whenever the screen changes. Some computers also slow down the output on the screen so that it doesn't go faster than you can read. The *really* advanced ones also emulate the sound of a dot-matrix printer as the characters come across the screen.

  10. All computer panels have thousands of volts and flash pots just underneath the surface. Malfunctions are indicated by a bright flash, a puff of smoke, a shower of sparks, and an explosion that forces you backward. (see #7, above)

  11. People typing away on a computer will turn it off without saving the data.

  12. A hacker can get into the most sensitive computer in the world before intermission and guess the secret password in two tries.

  13. Any PERMISSION DENIED has an OVERRIDE function.

  14. Complex calculations and loading of huge amounts of data will be accomplished in under three seconds. In the movies, modems transmit data at two gigabytes per second.

  15. When the power plant/missile site/whatever overheats, all the control panels will explode, as will the entire building.

  16. If you display a file on the screen and someone deletes the file, it also disappears from the screen. There are no ways to copy a backup file -- and there are no undelete utilities.

  17. If a disk has got encrypted files, you are automatically asked for a password when you try to access it.

  18. No matter what kind of computer disk it is, it'll be readable by any system you put it into. All application software is usable by all computer platforms.

  19. The more high-tech the equipment, the more buttons it has. However, everyone must have been highly trained, because the buttons aren't labeled.

  20. Most computers, no matter how small, have reality-defying three-dimensional, real-time, photo-realistic animated graphics capability.

  21. Laptops, for some strange reason, always seem to have amazing real-time video phone capabilities and the performance of a CRAY Y-MP.

  22. Whenever a character looks at a monitor, the image is so bright that it projects itself onto his/her face.

  23. Computers never crash during key, high-intensity activities. Humans operating computers never make mistakes under stress.

  24. Programs are fiendishly perfect and never have bugs that slow down users.


(to the tune of "Jingle Bells")

Oh! Microsoft, Microsoft,
Bloatware all the way!
I've sat here installing Word
Since breakfast yesterday!
Oh! Microsoft, Microsoft,
Moderation, please.
Guess you hadn't noticed:
Four-gig drives don't grow on trees!

Breck Carter can be reached by phone at (416) 763-5200 or via email at