sci-fi realist

I’ve always had a problem with the food replicators in Star Trek. I don’t understand how something can be made from nothing. Is it a hologram? Are you eating refracted beams of light? How does that sustain a lifeform? It doesn’t make sense. Maybe if there were entire planets dedicated to the production of, say, a nutrient-rich algae that could be made to look and taste like anything in the universe and all the replicator does is beam up an appropriately-sized chunk of moss and apply a portable holodeck image to it along with some sort of space drug that fools your taste receptors into thinking it’s truly a medium-rare earth cow steak .. but that’s just silly and complicated. So how is it done? What are they actually eating?

I’m much more of a realist. Yes, it’d be nice to feed the planet with instant food producers that can make anything imaginable, but that’s pure science fiction and at the very least, several centuries ahead of our time. I’d settle for something still futuristic, but a little more based in reality: a food filter.

In my head, a food filter is like a colander. It works by scanning the item(s) within the main chamber, and displays the contents on a touch screen. You can select one or more things on the list, and the filter will work to separate those items from the rest of the food. Example: a delicious batch of granola that has been tainted by horrible raisins. It is sticky and time consuming to pick the offending raisins out of the granola, but eating them is like eating garbage. What to do? Dump your bowl into the Food Filter™, select raisins on the screen, and voila! Your food is separated into the delicious and the awful, which you can then feed to someone you don’t like! Picky child? Filter the offensive food of the week right out of their meal! I’m eating a delicious yogurt with a granola mix-in, except some idiot assumed I wanted white chocolate chips with my breakfast. Wrong! I spent 15 minutes picking them out of my yogurt like a petulant three year old, but if I had a handy Food Filter™, I could have easily sorted the chips out and eaten my newly adult-breakfast-worthy yogurt without a care in the world. So simple!

I fully accept that we are nowhere near food replicators, if they’re even possible (Elon, get on that). However, we have scanners. We have colanders. We have a planet full of people with weird tastes. Let’s filter out all those things we hate, and get back to enjoying our food again!

I’d blame New York for making me weird, but let’s face it – I got to weird decades ago.

bad mood bear

I am in a terrible mood. There isn’t any particular reason for it; I just want to crawl back into bed and shut the world out for a day or so. I’ve had trouble sleeping recently, and last night I had a rare fit of angst about my ridiculous boobs, and I’m not in London, but those things don’t add up to the black cloud over my head. I think I’m just grumpy. Very, very grumpy.

So, to distract from my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad mood, here are some things that have genuinely entertained me over the last week; described with adjectives I do not normally use:

  • I loved this article about a couple in New York who, over 50 years, amassed a priceless art collection for the sheer love of it. I don’t care about art, art collections, couples from New York, or most things, but the article was just .. lovely. It’s worth a read, even if you are heartless and jaded like I am – something about the story of the Vogels made my insides all warm. Their names are Dorothy and Herb, for crying out loud – how can you not love them? There’s something amazing about doing something purely out of love, and the wonderful legacy they’re leaving the art world is so sweet.
  • Heavenly Nostrils is a syndicated comic strip about a girl and her unicorn best friend. It is impossibly endearing, and it’s easy to be drawn into Phoebe’s world. Start from the first strip and catch up – it is fun and cute and not at all hokey, which cannot be said about most syndicated comics.
  • This article about whipped honey is great. The author really, really likes honey and cheese, and – very likely unintentionally – describes her whipped honey experience in near-pornographic terms. You will never think of pepper grinders in the same way again.
  • Tonight I am gonna see some sharks. Stay tuned to my various internets for the inevitable eerie yet gorgeous pictures of jellyfish! I’ve never been to the Vancouver Aquarium, so I am excited.

That’s all I’ve got. Taking my bad mood for lunch now.

i still wish i was in london