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Hamumu Journal
Shocking12:54 AM -- Thu February 1, 2007

I live in a very dry place. I wear socks all day in the winter, since it's cold. The house is carpeted. These elements all conspire to create vast electrical forces that could burn down entire buildings, but instead tend to choose odder expressions. Recent electrical events:

  • I get up from the couch while holding a PS2 controller. Electricity shoots through me, through the controller, through the PS2, through the RCA cables, and BAM. The TV shuts off. It can't be turned back on without unplugging it for a few seconds first. Everything else in the chain is just fine. This has happened many times - our new couch is a hotbed of static.
  • Walk over to the computer and touch the mouse. The mouse dies, stops moving, and the computer says a USB device has disconnected. A second later it reconnects. Don't think that's good for it.
  • Every time I go over to change the radio station, I touch the case on the radio to discharge and get a nice hearty shock. I do this because I don't want to hurt my XM receiver which I have to touch next.
  • I have a very funny picture, which I will not post for my own personal safety, of my wife sitting in a chair with a giant halo of her hair all around her. Each strand (well, a few hundred that chose to do this) is individually sticking out in a different direction, just floating there.
  • The cats are very hesitant to sniff at us anymore, because every time they do they get electrocuted. It's good shock therapy, but I really don't need them to have an aversion to me.
  • If I pet a cat in the dark, it looks really cool.
  • The DVD player has gone dead more than once due to human contact.
  • I am developing an immunity to being shocked, as well as an innate awareness of whether I need to touch something metal before I touch something high-tech. I'm just plain getting used to it.
So if mass quantities of cat hair going into fan ports and CD drives wasn't enough, as well as rural-quality electricity (micro-brownouts of a 1/2 second or so on a regular basis), our electronic devices now also get to contend with intense jolts. That can't be good for them. It really amazes me that I can conduct into the TV going through a plastic PS2 controller, not to mention all the intervening cables and devices. Same with the mouse - I touch plastic, and it shorts out!

Speaking of devices, bribe #2 has arrived! A developer of a game I am doing a Round Up of this month has sent me a new video card so that I could actually run his game! I'm in the 21st century now. It's wonderful. It's unfortunate that the game appears to be a very good one, so I can't prove my incorruptibility by giving it a low score. Oh well, guess it just means I'll be getting more bribes! Hopefully they will continue to come from people who make good games, so nobody will ever realize that it doesn't affect the score.
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