In Food, Hautvoir, Local projects, news coverage, proto drafts, RLB trivia, Sundays, TV on June 12, 2016 at 9:32 am

I’ll go with “A projectile is launched” for starters. This settles the inner debate on which media bit starts the parade. So: congrats to The Guardian for “A projectile is launched” instead of something like “Bored idiot throws beer bottle” as commentary for readers who want to know what’s going on in a photo where another bored idiot holds on to his beer and laughs.

The Guardian had tight competition from the Nouvel Obs on this one.  In its coverage of rampaging after a soccer game in Marseille, the Obs informs readers a man had “a malaise” that leaves him hovering between life and death at latest report. “A malaise” is the habitual French euphemism for heart failure. The Obs then proceeds to inform the reader said heart failure occurred after the man got shoved to the ground,  kicked ‘and possibly’ hit over the head with a metal implement. Hm. Perhaps he had a pre-existing heart condition?

Sunday morning. The phone works again and did not ring once, thanks to the fact this is Sunday morning. Meaning, no one at the door yet, and a quiet phone. Considering how unquiet life was yesterday at the same time, I find the quiet anything but boring.

I’m even relaxed enough to ponder the expression ‘artificial intelligence’ in a mellow and mature way – no tantrum, no throwing of the phone through a closed or an open window. The ‘artificial’ part of the intelligence becomes self-evident when you hit the glitches. Leaves you wondering about the human intelligence involved in setting up a stupid system though.

To whit: a message appears on the screen of your basic service phone. “Your phone service will be cut off in the next 48 hours if you do not pay your bill“, the message reads. A second message scrolls by: “Please call the following number to pay your bill“. Problem number 1: the basic service phone takes in messages to which I can’t respond (because of the unpaid bill). I manage to access the client service platform online and discover problem number 2: the clever human behind the artificial intelligence forgot to write the necessary instructions concerning a back payment.  Ergo, the system missed the payment for the month of May (less than 8 euro) because there wasn’t enough money in the account – the sick dog took priority over the phone bill.  The system picked up on the June payment and left the May bill outstanding. I paid; the system acknowledged payment. Reinstatement of calling privileges took longer but that’s all right. It’s Sunday morning, the phone is quiet and so am I.

Save for a passing comment, I’ll leave the rest of the trivia for fiction. Granted, an old woman getting punched and stomped for her handbag isn’t trivial for the woman; not trivial for her neighbors either. The boy made the mistake of turning his face toward her. She recognized him and identified him for his photo on file at the gendarmerie. Her right arm is in a sling and her flea-sized dog with the horizontal ears still pretends he’s a force to contend with. The woman’s local slugger/stomper is fifteen years old.

Sunday morning and the sun’s out. Late-late dinner with a Tunisian family last night.The evening continued with TV time, straight from a Tunisian channel. Soap opera involving a lot of bunched-up eyebrows and rapid fire shouting matches, followed by a Price is Right type show where a woman won three hundred thousand dinar (one hundred and fifty thousand euro) and another, ten. All of this in Arabic, obviously. A great opportunity for concentrating on facial expressions and other forms of body language.




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