A Bit About Me

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Along with my daily duties as founder and head writer of HumorMeOnline.com, in 2003, I took the Grand Prize in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (also known as the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" competition). I've also been a contributor to "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and the web's "The Late Show with David Letterman". I also occupy my time writing three blogs, "Blogged Down at the Moment", "Brit Word of the Day" and "Production Numbers"...and my off-time is spent contemplating in an "on again/off again" fashion...my feable attempts at writing any one of a dozen books. I would love to write professionally one day...and by that I mean "actually get a paycheck".

27 January 2011

"Eye brake for..."

Inner workings of a state of the art laser weapon or brake light? You decide.

Buzz Lightyear had it wrong...it's not "To infinity and beyond!" - it's "An Infinity from behind...

...is really, really, really annoying!"

Seriously...can someone say "severe retinal damage"?

While my new saying might not be as catchy as the original, I am going to go out on a limb here and say the only man-made objects you can see from space other than "The Great Wall of China" are Infinity brake lights.

If you are behind someone, especially at night, and you feel the membrane peeling off your eye as easily as the skin on a grape, chances are that car in front of you is an Infinity.

If you've ever been patiently waiting behind the guy with 17 items in the "15 items or less" aisle in the store and caught a glimpse of that red multi-light scanner doohickey and it gave you flashbacks to the "Sandman scene in Logan's Run with Farrah Fawcett vivaciously aiding the laser-happy plastic surgeon"...you'll have a tiny understanding of what I'm trying to get across here.

If you've ever had the inclination (with or without having a buzz) to look down the working barrel of a laser pointer and then, like a total idiot, turn it on...well...I think you get the message by now.

Why these lights have to be twice the brightness of anything an arc welder deals with is beyond me.

Have the designers who okayed the 20,000,000 foot-candle luminosity of the light system ever driven BEHIND one of their cars? As with other automotive manufacturers, they might stand behind their cars...but I'm inclined to believe they do so only in the daytime.

I was driving home from Birmingham the other night when what should pull out before me during rush-hour traffic, but a car with tail lights doing more damage to my cornea than any solar eclipse ever could. Between stops I managed to glimpse the type of car: Infinity.

I tried in vain to let someone else get in front of me. I nearly came to a dead stop and signaled to the merging drivers to "go ahead of me". Certainly any car between me and the Infinity would be a welcome change. Any car that is, but another friggen Infinity!

I kid you not...there must be about 170,092 of them in Birmingham and each of them was damned determined to get in front of me on the way home that night. Each time I figured I'd get a reprieve...a traffic light...a guy weaving in and out of traffic like a bat out of hell...you got it -- another Infinity.

My eyes felt like they were bleeding razor blades by the time a late model truck with a missing taillight and a smelly exhaust got in front of me. I thanked God and prayed he was heading the same direction I was.

He wasn't. And yes...another Infinity took his place as soon as he turned off.

I'm just hoping there's some level of Hell they toss the people into who invented this "shield your eyes as if it were Medusa" brake light system. And I hope that level of Hell forces them to have their eyes yanked open wide with a "can't blink" contraption like "Alex" was strapped up to in A Clockwork Orange...combined with being subjected to a never-ending slit-lamp ophthalmologic exam...until infinity...

...and beyond.

(31 Jan 11: I hate when I make typos or other such stupidities which I find days later. This time it was a big technical one -- I meant to say "laser pointer" and had typed "laser printer"...which makes absolutely NO sense whatsoever in the context of what I was trying to get across. I have fixed it and now it reads better - but it's too late for most of you...all three people who read this blog. I had my chance and blew it. I'm going to have to read these things out loud to my kids next time...a fact I know they will JUST LOVE as they nearly feign death to get out of reading them as it is now.)


  1. I don't think I have been behind one yet~I am saying that due to still having my sight, but that does sound annoying! In fact, I might call our "convention center" that I pass every night to work and back to home again in the morning. They have one of those temperature/time boards outside and for the last week or so, the light is so strong that when you round the bend in the road-it hits you straight in the 'ol peepers (think 24 Infinity cars all grouped together emitting a blinding white light)
    Course, they probably have it amped up for the Superbowl so the drunk (money tossing) people will be able to see their way back to their (highly overpriced) hotel rooms LOL

    And also so the visiting big spenders can see that we have "cleaned up" our hooker problems LOL LOL LOL

  2. I'm sure I've never been behind one of those. And when I saw the picture I thought for sure that was some part of an old rotary phone.

    I actually went back up after I saw the photo of the car to double check the circular pattern in the center yellow piece. I really thought there were numbers on there.

    Hey, maybe that's what they've done with all of the obsolete dial phones in the landfills across the country.

  3. Nan - I know what you mean about those - I think they should have a "light senso" on them so they can dim at night.

    Cardio - That was the first thing I thought of as well...but being that I am OLD now...I don't even know how many people remember those things as more than half the people out there probably never used one!

  4. I'm with Cardio, I was guessing "old rotary phone" also.

    I have a bigger problem with trucks' headlights in my mirror. It's like Close Encounters of the Third Kind or something.

  5. Hey, I saw one of them "rotary phones" in a Antique Shop last week! It must have taken like days to dial someones number!

  6. Chris - Yep...or those super bright headlights from some newer cars.

    I think the worst offender, tho, has to be those blue flashing lights on police cars. Why do they need to be a zillion times brighter than anything known to man? They should have a dimmer switch for them at night, too. There's no way you can see anything in a 1000 yard radius when you are near them.

    Tauri - Yeah...we were so much more patient back then. Plus there were only 12 people with phones back in those days. ;)

  7. See, here's what's happening: The people who design and drive those cars care not a whit about anything other than their own gratification. Much as many cell phone users think that what they have to say is of interest to everybody else in a two-block radius, the drivers of these cars just plain don't give a damn about anything aside from you not driving into their rear ends.

    Which, of course, should give most of us more incentive to do so.

  8. Sully - I have to admit that I don't know how bright my brake lights are as I've never gotten in back of my car and looked...I don't think they are insanely bright - I've been behind the same model car before and it was not a problem.

    I was actually commenting to my son that I should just rear-end them to turn their lights off once and for all - but, unfortunately, one of those cop cars with the even more annoying lights would show up. ;)