May 2008

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Ah Scott,
This seems like an opportune moment to introduce my theory of luck. Luck can be divided into 2 categories; offensive and defensive. People with offensive luck tend to win $20 million in the lottery (and take offensive either way on that one). Those who have defensive luck tend to do REALLY stupid things, and suffer no consequences (i.e. getting so plastered that you can't stand up, driving home, and not totalling the car, or being pulled over for drink driving).

Now, I'm firmly in the defensive category, so I don't even bother buying lottery tickets. But it leads me to wonder; am I better off on this side of the fence? I think so, because it leaves me free to make my own way forward in life on my own intelligence and ability, with the safety blanket of knowing that my mistakes will pretty much all end in "soft landings". On the other hand, if I won $20 milllion, there wouldn't be much that I couldn't buy my way out of, so I guess it balances out.

To address the content of your post, I must first say that whatever the category, the luck balances. So, you are a reasonably successful cartoonist and business person - good (offensive) luck for you. Of course, the downside is that you will be visited with commensurate levels of "bad luck" - thus the events described in your post.

I suspect that you are well aware of the "relativity / balance" aspect, otherwise you wouldn't have come with the character of "Phil, Prince of Insufficient Light".

Anyhow, still enjoying the strip, and LOVE the blog.


Its very uncool that we have become so reliant on technology for everything; so many trivial things in life that we are capable of managing with out technology and in fact can do all by our selves with a little bit o smarts. It is uncool that we don't use our brains enough to figure things out. There are plenty of places in the world where people manage quite well without all the silly gadgets. We have lost all perspective and common sense!


Just remembered this one. This weekend everyone in the US has to set their clocks one hour ahead. This is the first year we are doing this in March instead of April.

Many electronic devices change the date themselves, and will continue to do April.

So we have to change the date now and then remember to fix the errant dates in April.

Too frickin’ uncool.

abominable noseman

in reply to the guy who wanted to read Dilbert in Australia, The Age and possibly the Sydney Morning Herald show it. The Age carries it on Tuesdays, but not with the other comics: you have to look for it in the business section for next


Think of it this way.

Eventually, you did get on the flight, and it did depart.

No in-flight internet? Pfft, that's what a window seat is for. Not focusing on Microsoft Windows....just the hazy, dirt scratched real jet window. To stare out & be amazed at how little things get. There are other forms of entertainment for such a short flight. Play with those little airjet doohickies above your head. You won't find them on the average, ordinary rental car.

You arrived safely. The tires on the jet blowing out upon landing could've been bad. There's no need to kiss the ground though. Even if flights go bad, they eventually hit the ground anyways. The joys of gravity.

You did get a rental car. Sometimes they just don't have one available. Standing at some desk, as a frazzled desk clerk stares at their screen...then back at you...then back to the screen, perplexed as to why they don't know where any of their cars are. A reservation simply means a car will become available as soon as it's returned from the last reservation.

Then, if luck still sides with you, you GET a car. Might not a nice one. Could be covered in dents & dings (make sure you make that rental agent very aware of pre-existing damage, so they don't bill you upon the return of the hooptie).

Even with the navigation system working in nonsensical display, at least you were somewhat sure you were still driving in this country. Keep following a road till you come across water....that's the edge...turn around, and try another road.

Finally, when you get home (or wherever it was you just gave up at), kick off your shoes & let out a sigh of relief. Nothing left to mess with you on the outside world.

And to hot water & really hot scalding water. It could've been ice cold (temperamental water heaters tripping the circuit breaker, and deciding to take a nap prior to taking a shower at all).

Count the blessings, no matter how aggravating they might be. Things could always be worse.

Could've been your flight departing on time, and mid-flight...something goes "Boink!". A goofy way of saying the engine made a noise it shouldn't have.

In the end of that scenario...yes, you would've had a very rude & short cold shower, without any internet service at all. And to the Navigation System even being understandable. Of course it would (but realizing that "road" was a dead end would've been moot anyways).

You've lived through another could that be Un Cool :-)

jerry wolfe

Adjusting the shower temp is a easy fix.
Just have your beautiful wife get in first and have her adjust it so it's good for her, and then reach in and drop the temperature down about 50 degrees to the range earth creatures could go in and not experience instant death.

Next, the realy difficult question: Why is it that most women have the water so hot it could take the chrome off a trailer hitch.

Just a guess on your airline delay: United Airlines? Ooops, did I say that out loud?


Oh my friggin god Catbert is reading this blog! See second comment from the top!

Real Live Girl

Sounds like the Denver Airport. A 4 hour delay was always SOP it seemed. If my first choice travel plans include a stopover in Denver, I change them. Took me a few times to figure out I have bad travel juju there. Denver Airport - too frickin' uncool.


Sharpie has, almost overnight, become the flavorite word of the month and I'd like to know why!! What was wrong with calling a felt pen a felt pen or a marker? I can't believe the Manufacture (whose name will remain unmentioned, even tho' I've got them all over the desk) has paid off all the users to semi-sublimate it's product all over the map... I mean, don't we have enough of them now anyway?? Why doesn't this said manufacturer do something useful like invent a way we can employ the 'markers' we already have but don't work?


Sounds like a rough day. My cat got in my face while I was taking a nap today. It made me sneeze a couple times. I guess that was frickin uncool....but it seem much less dramatic.



You are common sense challenged, technology has blinded you. Welcome to AmeriKKKa. Just turn on the TV, mellow out, and watch Britney shave and diapered astronauts drama.

We'll take care of reality for you.

Joe Simmons

I'm sorry about that, bud. I've never used a navigation unit, but I cannot fathom how they wouldn't get me MORE lost. It's not like you can ask them, "you mean THIS left? Or the one with the light?"



I am “frickin uncool.” At 47 I may be young, but I still remember how to read a map and drive a stick. (I learned to drive three on the tree and double clutch.) An 82 minute flight? Do you own a Lear Jet? An 82 minute flight for the hoi poloi is a thirty minute drive to the airport. Arrive at least 45 minutes before departure. I can drive faster than that in my red convertible. If I want to drive fast, or if I want to take the scenic route, I can do that, too.

chris drake

gday, first time i've commented. I enjoy reading your blogs very much.

I bought dilbert tv series on dvd a few months ago and it is really good. I had already downloaded the first 10 or so episodes but realised how good it was I thought I should buy the whole set.

Anyway the reason why I am commenting is that I am currently working on something that will be able to tell you how hot the water is, and you will be able to set the temperature. It has a lot of other cool features (saves a lot of water too) but ill let you know when its working if you are really that interested.


Ah yes, Murphy's law has it's revenge. First thing they taught me in engineering school, and then I got my Ph.D. deciding how to assign probationers to volunteer counselors. Between human ingenuity and antingenuity (I just made that up. It means either negatively directed ingenuity or the quality that lets ants find their way into hermetically sealed containers.) ... anyway there's no hope. Up until you actually die, you can hope that your immortal, but being born as a small, ignorant yard ape should give you a clue that it's not going to be an easy trip. Things may seem to be improving right up through puberty, but then your hair starts falling out. On the days that I believer there is a god, I'm forced to conclude that he especially hated humans. The only reason for temporary success or happiness is to get us off our guard.

God. I feel so much better now. Rant is good for your soul. --gk

P. Whirler

Just remember the H and C symbols are reversed.

Asparagus Pee Chris

Look on the bright side - you get to fly, drive, and there's a place where strangers can stay indoors in Indian Wells, California. I understand about the shower control, but you don't have to go back all that far to find that indoor plumbing was pretty frickin' cool.

still working it out

You should use more Japanese stuff. It tends not to have these sorts of uncool problems.


Assuming this is philositainment, I thought I'd add a thought here. If the problem with the technology, or our dependence on it? I'll agree with you on Google Maps---I've never seen a mapping program that I'd trust blindly. I live on a one-way street, and Mapquest invariably has us going the wrong way straight out of the driveway.
So instead of relying on GPS and computers, I choose to not turn off my brain, and do my own thinking. I acquire maps of the locations I plan to be at, and familiarize myself with the area. Instead of carrying a cell phone for an emergency, I know CPR and first aid. Instead of depending on Google, I know how to use both a card catalogue and an encyclopedia.
The human mind. Versatile, reliable, and always right with you. Too frickin' cool.


You just need a better shower head.

Delta makes a really nice one with two dials. The small dial sets the temperature. Once you set this, you should never need to change it. The other turns it on and off. It also has scald-guard, so the temperature doesn't change when someone flushes a toilet

You can buy these at your local Lowes/Home Depot, then just give it to a plumber to install. They come in a variety of finishes - just ask your wife, she'll know what to get.

Here is what it looks like:
Here is where you can get it:

Gill Bates

Not cool.


Sorry Ron, but I don't get the Hume references. Computers do/don't believe in induction or causation?

Albert Francis

Actually, the Google thing has happened to me several times as well. I have given up on Google Maps and only use MapQuest.

Anonymous Coward

Was it a Garmin navigation system? I've found them to be extremely user belligerent.

Sara Short

Sounds like somebody's cranky. Whining is sooo unbecoming....

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