Feb. 27 update: As if by magic, I got my wish today and turned off the prompts.
Have you ever broken the law and didn’t get caught, if so how?
Since accepting the Jetpack plug-in to manage this WordPress site a few weeks ago, I’ve been hoping to find a way to get rid of the annoying writing prompts that show up whenever I log in.
I skip them every time, so you would think Jetpack would get the message, right? Nope.
I didn’t see a single prompt that looked interesting at all until one about breaking the law came along. I had to laugh, and not just about its sloppy, run-on construction.
The only prompts I’ve paid any attention to before were required by writing contest rules. Now I’m looking forward to hearing about dozens of writers getting busted after confessing to crimes and explaining in detail how they avoided getting caught.
I guess you could say the prompt prompted me to write something. Last time I looked, almost 300 others were promptly prompted, too.
I’ll confess only to being curious about what they all did.
Learning about a new place can be both fun and challenging, whether you’ve moved a long way from what used to be home or you’re just visiting for the first time. One of the finest ways to do this is on a bicycle.
Ernest Hemingway said so:
It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best…
Most of us ride at a pace that lets us appreciate our surroundings. Unless we’re on a tight schedule to get somewhere and back, we can stop for coffee or shoot some photos or just take a closer look at something that catches our attention.
Maps aren’t always available to help with your wayfinding. Mrs. Smith and I got lucky when cycling friend David Lehmann introduced us to cycling velocartographer John Hodge on a coffee ride a while back.
John says his maps are there to be “downloaded, printed out, linked to, or used in any way that a) helps people enjoy road cycling around here more, and b) isn’t for commercial purposes without my consent.” You can contact him at that link to his maps.
Sounds more than fair to me. Don’t try to sell them in a bike shop or anywhere else without his permission.
Caution: Widespread use of AI for “writing” will increase the already massive amounts of crappy prose and other unedited, inaccurate, misleading and/or deliberately falsified information available to all of us.
Some decades ago, I bought a book that I’ve started to read but failed to finish more than once. I’m determined to get through it this time, along with a few others.
“When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping the foundations of justice from beneath new generations.”
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago
Among the books I decided to keep not long ago, I’ve made pretty good progress in The Gulag Archipelago. Its relevance for today has taken me by surprise. The sentence quoted above grabbed me from the depths of the Cold War and dropped me right back here in the present.
Gerald Ford’s pardon of Richard Nixon cheated us out of one historic opportunity to do justice, then the Senate failed to remove Donald Trump from office when it had the chance and more than enough cause.
To date, our government has failed us yet again, and voters have failed to elect enough politicians who will demand justice.
Trump’s indictment, trial and conviction can’t come soon enough. The prospect of having him in the Oval Office once again is disheartening to say the least.
To paraphrase Solzhenitsyn from the same paragraph above, it will be horrible to live in such a country.