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Positive Sinking

It All Works Out In Base Thirteen

By Akshay Patil

Features Editor

Howdy, here’s a random question to ponder (this is my typical “ice-breaker” question I always use when I’m meeting new people):

If you had to drown in anything other than water, what would it be, and why?

I’ve heard all sorts of answers from the ordinary (beer, chocolate, etc.) to the uber-geeky (liquid oxygen, heavy water, phosphate-buffered saline, etc.) to the downright bizarre (liquified corn dogs, E-Z Cheese with bacon flavoring, etc.), so I’m interested to hear what the Positive Sinking guru can come up with..

-- Vanessa

Water. Oh crap, that’s not allowed. Uhm, well I’m really not keen on the whole dying thing, so how about cryogenic-super-cold-liquid-stuff-that-doesn’t-kill-you-but-preserves-you-for-future-revival? You know, like I was Ted Williams... minus the ability to hit the ball with a bat, but plus the calculus.

Assuming that’s not allowed either, I’d probably have to be all uncreative like and say “chocolate.” Or maybe chocolate with penguins. I’d say liquid penguin, but that’s kind of gross if you think about it, which you are, since you’re reading this.

Anyways, chocolate with real living penguins in it, might not be so bad. That’s probably cheating though since the penguins would save me from drowning in the first place since they’re nice and, while I’m picking, I’d probably be dressed up in my giant penguin suit.... errr, I mean “a” giant penguin suit. Heheh, wouldn’t want to imply that I have a giant water-proof penguin suit in my closet which I save for special occasions. Because I don’t. And that’s all I have to say about that.

You are a witty and quotable guy. Why don’t you have a Technique quote?

-- Jon

Me? Quotable? You must have me confused with somebody else. As my regular reader (hi mom!) will attest, most of what I say is absolute gibberish. Heaven forbid anyone should actually quote me, it’d be like translating a high school literature paper into pig latin -- not only is it horribly obfuscated and weird, but underneath it all nobody’s saying anything in the first place. That or it’s full of teenage stang-ay.

I actually did turn in a Technique quotation, which I can only imagine was either lost or thrown out as stupid. Nothing creative though, since everything I do is probably stolen from someone else, whether I realize it or not.

Anyways, the quotation I wanted by my photo was “mostly harmless,” which is a phrase that anyone could, and everyone probably does, string together should they put their mind to it. I like to attribute it to good ol’ Dougie Adams though, since he’s the one who got famous for saying it.

Maybe the good folks at Technique took it out because they felt it was false advertising on my part -- my friends make me sit in the corner at parties because I tend to scare away the cute girls with my inane babbling and giant penguin suit. I like to think I’m not much of a bother though and have yet to receive a restraining order (they did, however, kick me out of the zoo --said I was scaring the children).

Perhaps “mostly harmless” isn’t as kick ass as, you know, ’N*SYNC lyrics, but it felt like the proper footprint to leave in our spiffy red yearbook, four year after being handed a red (maroon? cardinal? What is our school color anyways?) Hitchhiker’s guide to Institvte orientation.

Dear Sinking to Wear Pants To,

Make something about Beanie Babies eating EG-6 fusion droids in under thirty seconds. It should be soca but definitely not ska. Try and do a Bahamian accent.

-- Egg Conveying an Emoticon

I have no idea what you’re talking about, but I like your name. More importantly, your e-mail pushes me over my self-imposed minimum word count. Woot.

Term’s almost over, better unload all those weird thoughts you have into an e-mail to sinking@mit.edu where they can be recycled into an environmentally-safe alternative. Like newspaper. Which is probably more detrimental to the environment than your weird thought... unless your weird thought involves toxic components such as walruses, dresses, or all natural flavoring.