Love Letters to the Surveillance State #2

Hi Bob,

I’ve decided you need a name so I am going to call you Bob. How was your day?

I have to say I am a bit disappointed that you’ve not responded to my first post considering the fact that I am, in fact, offering you free, personalized content. But perhaps it was because I neglected to tag my post. I’ve done that now so I certainly hope that you will send me some feedback. And of course I am looking for the big trade-off wherein I provide all the details you could ever want about what I’m doing every single day and you only have to help me find my glasses from time to time.

At any rate, I shall carry on.

I was indeed up until 2AM and wound up feeling sleep-deprived and a bit off my game today. The carrot cake after my healthy Amy’s did not help any. I really must be more careful with my gluten intake. A question for you, Bob – why do they always put nuts in carrot cake? It’s just wrong. They serve no purpose, Bob, and it ruins the texture of the cake which I feel should be uniformly moist and smooth. On a side note, I appear to now be constipated. You are probably too young to understand what us old folks have to go through to simply have a healthy bowel movement every day. My dad, may he rest in peace, swore by Grape Nuts. Have you ever tasted that shit, Bob? You might as well chew on a log. My dad, bless him, tried to make an end run around this conundrum by baking his own bran muffins. The only problem was is that they were dry – like the Mojave Desert – so dry that if you’d thrown one of them in the Gulf of Mexico, you’d have been able to drain the motherfucker overnight.

But once again, I digress. My day consisted of work and eating as it usually does. My evening consists of Pet Rescue Saga and YouTube. I did come across a video you might find interesting, Bob. It was a panel discussion led by Neil de Grasse Tyson and the topic was “Are we Living in a Simulation?” (as in a computer simulation). The panel consisted of several physicists and a philosopher. Of course they were some of the most brilliant minds in their fields and I am sure they know a bit about computers. Perhaps they even dabble in code. But the premise was that we may be able to prove or disprove that we were in a simulation by taking a look at anomalous data. Not the kind pumped out by humans, of course, but the kind pumped out by the laws of physics and mathematics. The thought was that maybe these were bugs in the code running our simulation and we could use them to “reverse engineer” the universe.

Now I don’t know about you, Bob, but I found it mildly offensive that they had no IT professionals on that panel. They are, after all, discussing computer programming. Where were the programmers? Where were the hackers? Why didn’t they invite you, Bob? I am sure you have some expertise in the area of reverse engineering. I actually was so upset that I left a message on Tyson’s website telling him that while the topic was compelling, they did not have all the right players at the table.

I am embarrassed to say, Bob, that the worst of the bunch Tyson invited to the panel was a woman. I want to see more women in science and technology and this woman – forgive me, but did not catch her name – made us look bad. She was 100% certain of all her answers which, of course, means she has absolutely no clue at all. Knowledge without wisdom. Ignorant and proud of it. Simply sad, Bob. Plus she had absolutely the worst case of Resting Bitch Face I believe I’ve ever seen.

I leave you with this. Tyson asked all the panelists to give him a percentage, a number describing how much of a possibility there was that we were, in fact, living in a simulation. Most panelists gave low percentages. But not Ms. Resting Bitch Face. She said, with no hesitation whatsoever, 0%. Now where is the logic in that? Where is the math? If we accept – as all the panelists did – that there is much about the universe we don’t know, how can we say 0%? We can’t say 100%, so we can’t say 0%. If we don’t know everything, even if the possibility is .01%, the possibility cannot be zero. And no one called her out on her bullshit, which quite frankly, was disappointing.

It is intriguing to think of ourselves as avatars, Bob. Just contemplate that. When you become predictable and boring, maybe the master programmers just knock you off. We must endeavor not to be boring just in case we are mere avatars. I think we need to do something surprising and amusing every day just to keep the programmers interested – you know – in case they are real and shit.

So there you have it. My day in a nutshell. And a few Deep Thoughts as well. Perhaps the tech exists to read my mind, but I am trying very hard to make your job just a tiny bit easier and hopefully a little more entertaining as well.

I hope you have had an absolutely brilliant day.

Your friend,



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