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By Samuel Stoddard

December 1999

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Thursday, December 23, 1999

Merry Christmas, everyone. Until Monday, I'll be doing little more than check in every now and again to make sure things are running smoothly and that RinkChat hasn't died again. I hope your weekends are all as joyous as I hope mine will be, and I leave you with the following selections from the deluge of wonderful answers to December 14th's reader question:

Friday, December 17, 1999

"Darien," who, incidentally, was announced as half of the Official RinkWorks Couple yesterday, wrote me a letter in response to yesterday's journal entry:

Answers to the previous reader question will be coming in the next journal entry.

Wednesday, December 15, 1999

Amidst the silliness -- after yesterday's reader question was asked but before it's answered -- a little seriousness.

Yesterday's Reader Poll question was, simply, "Choose 'A' from the list below." The choices were 'A' and 'B'. Here are the results.

As I've mentioned before elsewhere, this was a question I thought up before I had a web site to ask it on. The question is designed to ascertain which of you are mindless followers and which of you are rebels without causes. Neither is particularly complimentary. Then again, I could have said this discerns which of you respect authority and which of you are independent, both of which are complimentary.

A military consisting of type B people would be quickly overcome by another with an actual process of operation. A country of type B people would be a chaotic rabble. A research team of type B people may possibly spend so much time reinventing the wheel as to accomplish very little. On the other hand, artists of type B people would probably produce some remarkable work. Type B folk are less likely to find themselves in ruts throughout life. Type A people, by contrast, are great at coordination and teamwork and getting jobs done, but may lack innovation.

Of course, the above has caveats: one, that these types are extremes and most of you are going to fall somewhere in between, leaning more toward one side than the other. Two, that I am not a psychologist, and I made all this stuff up.

I didn't answer the question, but where do I side? Probably more toward A than B. "Independent thinker" is a popular term these days, certainly a valuable character trait, but one that I don't see as conflicting with a type A disposition. Type A also implies a trusting nature -- judiciously trusting, I would hope -- and I believe that the exchange of trust in either direction is a good thing that outweighs the inherent risks.

But it takes all kinds to make the world go around. In the clone thread a while back, we pretty much all agreed we didn't want another one of ourselves running around. I'm glad there aren't two of me, and I'm especially glad there aren't six billion of me.

Tuesday, December 14, 1999

I haven't updated this in a while. Partly that's because I'm at a loss for things to say, although I guess I could mention that yesterday I fitted RinkChat with slimmed-down versions of the Redneck and Elmer Fudd dialects from The Dialectizer page. I'm reluctant to load up the chat script too much, in case it becomes a burden on my web host's server, though, so I don't think I'll port any more over. Why those two? I picked the most popular and the most lightweight, respectively.

At any rate, lacking volumes to say, why don't I give up the floor? Tell me, folks, which is better, a toothbrush or a piano? Send your answers to, and I'll post a selection of your opinions soon.

Wednesday, December 8, 1999

Today is the second anniversary of the opening of RinkWorks. See the RinkWorks Timeline for more information. At any rate, to celebrate this occasion, I have opened the short humor featurette, Lights & Noises, a humorous essay on pinball. Happy RinkWorks day, everyone!

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