Tuesday, September 20, 2011

My Newish Device

So, Microsoft is said to be hard at work on Windows 8 - an allegedly revolutionary step forward that will allow their operating system to operate on all kinds of devices and not just PCs.

Can anyone tell me if it will operate on my favorite new device?

I know it might not look newish but I can assure you that it's *quite* new to my home as of last month. It's called a Silvertone 8051 and although it was made and sold by Sears in 1948 rather than by Apple anytime this century, I challenge you to try to find anything made by Apple that will still work as well 63 years from today. Go on - just try. You can't do it, can you? Score one for Sears!

What's that, you say? You think the Silverstone in that photo actually died years ago? I suspected there might be doubters like you out there. That's why I've gone to the trouble to take this additional photo of it:

That's the front page of today's newspaper that it's holding up, my friend. What more do you need - the smell of burning flesh filling your nose as your fingers slip into its back side and make contact with its hot, glowing tubes? Don't be a sicko!

Now, I'll freely grant that my new device is not as easy to carry around as a smart phone or an iPad or even a laptop computer, BUT... I think my device produces more smiles per watt than just about any other item you might have on you right now.

For one thing, my device looks like it just popped out of a cartoon.

For another, it weighs an incredible 7 pounds. Carrying it around isn't simply an amusing diversion, it's a full body work-out!

Best of all, though, is the fact that all it does is allow me to listen to local AM radio stations. That's it! NO email. NO text messages. NO Google Earth or MapQuest or Wikipedia or YouTube. I can't even get any of those highly distracting FM radio stations you may have heard about.

At the moment, it's hard for me to imagine a more inefficient piece of equipment - and that's a good thing.

Efficiency is vastly overrated. It's what has led to the 24 hour news cycle, high unemployment, and Ebola's ability to get from Africa to Iowa in the time it takes me to find my shoes.

Economists might enjoy prattling on and on about the wonders of increased productivity but from where I sit (did I mention that my Silvertone makes a great emergency footstool?) the main thing increased productivity has achieved is speed up the rapidity at which wealth in this country is becoming concentrated in fewer and fewer pockets.

And to add insult to injury, all the big pocket manufacturers have either automated their factories or relocated them overseas.

Still not convinced that you'd be better off with a Silverstone radio than a PC?

Well, consider this: If you had a Silverstone radio right now instead of a PC, you might actually be whistling while you work instead of sitting there pointlessly wondering if I intended this blog entry to be funny or serious or merely annoying.

I rest my case.


  1. It's tubular.
    Interesting to think of keeping the Internet out as a feature. Of course in this case it failed.
    I'm using my computer to listen to Penn Jilette read his book God, No!
    If you were my neighbor, you could listen to it along with me on an FM radio, but not on Silvio.
    Speaking of FM, Penn spoke recently on FM...
    The captcha is andanky, which I guess means, "and thank you".

  2. That's funny, it doesn't look Newish.
    So far my favoritist quote from God, No! is when he said, "What's the use of being an atheist if you still have to stand on ceremony?"
    The most interesting interlude happens when an Hassidic Jew comes up to him after a show and says he would like to eat his first non-kosher food with Jilette, because listening to Jillette on the radio convinced him to renounce Judaism and Hassidivism.
    Jilette and his posse take the guy to a barber and get his beard cut with a straight-edge razor (apparently those aren't kosher, either) and then take him to a steakhouse to sample all the pork and shellfish on the menu, topped by the steakhouse's signature bacon cheeseburger. The former Jew announces "Bacon is DELICIOUS" when he bites the greasy, dripping burger.
    Jilette knows how to live large. Or in his cast, extra-large, tall.