Felipe’s been distracted

GOTTA INQUIRY from a reader today, Dave Davis, wondering why it’s been silent here for a week. I’ve been busy with other things. That’s all.

For instance, yesterday we drove down the mountainside to the nearby state capital to see the movie Joker, especially since so many leftists are hysterical about it and the bad example they say it sets. People might even shoot up the theaters, they howled and wept.

Crazy people do bad things with guns, you know, and it’s the fault of the guns.*

jokerI fail to understand the hubbub about the movie. It was reported to be very violent. It isn’t.

There are four murder scenes, no more. In two of them, a pistol is used, and I didn’t see any blood whatsoever. Also, a suffocation. Again, no blood. A knife was used in the fourth, and it got a bit grim, but by modern, anything-goes standards, the flick’s almost PG.

You want to see violence? Watch Sam Peckinpah’s 1969 cult classic The Wild Bunch. Now there is a violent movie, one which I love, by the way.

Joker is similar to the 1976 movie Taxi Driver in that both are about losers who descend into homicidal madness. Taxi Driver and Joker are about equal on the violence scale. And Taxi Driver‘s star, Robert Di Niro, has a role in Joker. Coincidence?

Joker is very dark and grim, not suitable for young children for that reason. It’s less about violence than it is about insanity. The movie’s finale was too drawn-out. Otherwise, it was interesting, and Joaquin Phoenix is a very good actor.

* * * *

I’ve also been busy with time-consuming computer matters. A word-processing program I’ve used for years, and on which I had some important documents saved, decided recently to display everything garbled. I could find no solution. Luckily, I also have hard copies of most of the documents, but they’ll have to be typed all over again.

Now I’m using Zoho Writer. I gave other options a test drive, but Zoho won out. It’s an Indian company if you don’t know. Nice document program. Free.

I also investigated browser options. I’m a browser junkie. My primary goal always is to dodge anything Google, and that includes the Chrome browser. I had been using it a short spell due to my previous browser, Comodo Icedragon, disappointing me.

First, I decided on Brave, and it worked well for a week or more till one morning I turned on my H-P desktop, and it simply was not there. It wasn’t anywhere on my desktop machine. Poof! Gone! How strange. I liked it too. Lovers disappoint you.

I downloaded it again, but now I cannot trust it. It’s a backup.

I returned to Chrome, short-term. It is reliable, reliably good, reliably evil. Chrome is a nosy parker. If you open Chrome, take a moment to open your task manager. You’ll find a long list of Google Chrome things running quietly in the background like mice, and if you close Chrome completely, they keep on running. They don’t close when the browser does.

Your life is their cheese. No other browser I’ve tried does that. Not even Firefox.

I’ve settled on a new browser that’s working quite well, a lot like Chrome. You can even use Chrome extensions, which is great. My new browser is Yandex, a product out of Russia. I had tested Yandex a couple of years ago, but it was too Russian, the language.

But it’s improved a lot!

Now you can set it to come up in English nearly always. Occasionally, it will display something in Russian, but it immediately translates it into English. It works very much like Chrome but with some nifty, additional features.

I imagine you’re using Chrome or Firefox and always will. They’re like Facebook and Twitter. They get their claws into you, and you submit like a putz. Sad.

So that’s what I’ve been up to, Dave. Movie-going and online investigating: word-processing and browsers. Also, some yard work and the afternoon visits to the plaza downtown to sit with coffee and my Kindle. It keeps the old boy busy.

* * * *

* A parable: A flock of sheep noticed that wolves came into the pasture at night and ate some of their fellow sheep. The sheep noticed that wolves have teeth, so the sheep decided to pull out their own teeth. They felt safe after doing that. But not for long.

11 thoughts on “Felipe’s been distracted

    1. Cracker: A perfectly good idea, which I did. And when I opened them up from the flash drive, I encountered a sea of garble. Thanks anyway.

      In the future, I’ll be saving them in the sky, er, I mean, cloud. There’s nothing exceptionally sensitive.

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    2. Cracker, P.S.: It just hit me that you suggested scanning first. Well, that would work, but most of them are things I need to edit on occasion. Scanned documents are not editable. Truth is that there are a number of ways to solve the problem, but for now I’m sticking with Zoho Docs.

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      1. Don’t you have backups of the corrupted files? I suspect not. Sounds like your disastrous experience with iTunes. You’ve gotta make backups or you’ll continue to suffer what you’re suffering. And I rather doubt it was the word-processing software that garbled all the files. Have you tried to look for a utility program that might un-garble them?

        Saludos,

        Kim G
        Boston, MA
        Where we have regular backups on two separate hard drives, one of which lives off-premises.

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        1. Kim: I do have backups. But on opening them from the backups, the result was the same. No matter. I have moved on. There were only two or three things of importance, and I had hard copies. I’ve retyped them on Zoho Docs, and now they’re sitting happily in the sky, er, cloud.

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  1. I’m so glad you are well.

    I gave up on anything Windows-based in 1999. In 2007 my wife enrolled online to complete a degree, and our Mac-based version of Windows wasn’t compatible with the curriculum. We were forced to buy a Windows laptop. I won’t bore you with the details, but it was a less than satisfactory experience.

    For the last seven years we’ve been driving around in a RV. We use nothing but tablets and a smartphone. I’m not creative, I d rather read everything creative people write. I enjoy your blog, photography and stories.

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    1. Dave: So you’re on the other side of the Windows-Apple divide. I had nothing against Apple, quite the contrary, until about 10 years ago when iTunes corrupted every tune I had on my computer irreparably, and I had a lot. Apple has had my ill will ever since though I know it makes good stuff. It’s still an also-ran with the public and always will be, I suspect.

      Also, different from you, I do not use tablets or smartphones. I have a smartphone, but I don’t use it as a computer 99 percent of the time. I use it to make calls and send text messages, almost exclusively to my wife. It’s only connected to the internet here at home, using my own WiFi. When I’m out and about, it’s just a phone. I like desktop computers. Those other things have very inconvenient, teeny-tiny keyboards. I type 100 words a minute, and I can’t do that on a smartphone or tablet.

      I have no clue why your feedback is still going to the moderation line. Sorry about that. I ain’t doing it.

      And thanks for the kind words.

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  2. Like you, one of the joys in my life in Mexico is writing. The knowledge that every event in my life is a potential story hones my attention. I pay more attention to details when I am out and about. And I think about what it all means.

    But, like you, I have become distracted. At least, I think that is what it is. Since December, I have felt a bit off of my game. Maybe I just need a new challenge.

    Thanks for the essay. It has set my mind whirling.

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  3. Both of you two keep my mind working. I am ever surprised by the things that you write and think about. As a non-writer but avid reader, I check daily to see what has caught your attention. Keep up the good work.

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