Coincidence?? or "Behold My Power" November 21, 2008 9:03 AM   Subscribe

Coincidence or awesome internet powers?

That's right, Grumblebee asks a question about a book, and the cover of the book (not exactly, but very similar) shows up as Google's homepage thingy of the day.
Either a quirky thing, or an example of the power GB secretly posessess over the intrawebs.
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza to MetaFilter-Related at 9:03 AM (50 comments total)

Is this where I start whistling the X-Files theme?
posted by Green Eyed Monster at 9:11 AM on November 21, 2008


...should mention this will only be true for today, November 21st
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 9:12 AM on November 21, 2008


This is the Obama effect. Everything's better!
posted by scabrous at 9:13 AM on November 21, 2008 [5 favorites]


or an example of the power GB secretly posessess over the intrawebs.

Or that the ghost of Rene Magritte possesses...
posted by amro at 9:17 AM on November 21, 2008


Book Design and the Spirit of Magritte
posted by vacapinta at 9:20 AM on November 21, 2008


That's no coincidence... It's a space station!
posted by Mister_A at 9:20 AM on November 21, 2008


Uh, it's a famous Magritte painting. Grumblebee asked about a book that happened to use it for the cover, and it happens to be Magritte's bday today. Am I missing something awesome here?
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:20 AM on November 21, 2008


Well, it may be a series of tubes, but it's certainly not a pipe.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 9:21 AM on November 21, 2008 [26 favorites]


Grumblebee asked about a book that happened to use it for the cover,

Yes, what I meant to point out above is that Magritte-ish book covers are extremely common. So, the only coincidence is that its Magritte's birthday. Which isn't an earth-shaking coincidence I think.
posted by vacapinta at 9:24 AM on November 21, 2008


Grumblebee just happened to ask a question about a book she didn't know about that ended up using a Magritte painting on the cover, all on Magritte's bday....
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 9:24 AM on November 21, 2008


"How do you like me now, bitches?"
-Carl Jung*
posted by Durin's Bane at 9:24 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


Not to rain on your parade, but he actually asked the question yesterday.
posted by amro at 9:27 AM on November 21, 2008


ceci n'est pas une "she"
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:28 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


Je m'accuse
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 9:30 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


/submits AskMe about rainbows, waits for tomorrow's OMGAMAZING Googlechronicity post.
posted by DU at 9:32 AM on November 21, 2008


c'est ne pas un coincidence
posted by GuyZero at 9:32 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


That's extraordinary -- just the other day I was trying to remember the name of this book, and then I clicked on Google to do some searching, and -- OH MY GOD.

So you see this weird Google synchronicity thing appears to be a repeated phenomenon. Very freaky.
posted by game warden to the events rhino at 9:38 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


What's really crazy is that it was also Magritte's birthday EXACTLY A YEAR AGO!
posted by eyeballkid at 9:40 AM on November 21, 2008


It gets better--look extremely closely at that building in the background, and in the second window from the left you'll see a turkey being slaughtered.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:49 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's also the White Album's birthday and the Beatles stole the whole Apple thing from Magritte.
Also Kevin Bacon.
posted by chococat at 9:50 AM on November 21, 2008


Whoa. Does the text box below looks like the White Album or what?
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 10:05 AM on November 21, 2008


Am I missing something awesome here?
Yes. But we're not telling. You'll just have to look harder.
posted by Sailormom at 10:07 AM on November 21, 2008


CunningLinguist : Am I missing something awesome here?

*hides glowing thing behind back*

No. I don't know what your talking about; there is nothing supremely awesome here! Nope. Nothing so cool, that simply glancing at it would cause you to have a sort of mental orgasm. You are badly misinformed if you think I have anything like that hidden behind me. Leave me alone! I don't want to talk about it.

*runs away*
posted by quin at 10:07 AM on November 21, 2008


Please show us on the doll where the Ouija board touched you.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 10:10 AM on November 21, 2008 [2 favorites]


The Beatles stole Kevin Bacon from Magritte?
posted by fidelity at 10:14 AM on November 21, 2008


Also Kevin Bacon.

Holy shit, dude, I just ate some bacon this morning.

Mmmmm.... bacon.
posted by bondcliff at 10:19 AM on November 21, 2008


More like coinciDUNCE.

AM I MAGRITTE?
posted by Jofus at 10:31 AM on November 21, 2008 [6 favorites]


I wonder what sluglicker would say about this.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 10:37 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


JoFUS yourself.
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 10:38 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ahh, this thread gave me a good excuse to listen to Paul Simon's Rene and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After the War [YouTube, 3:41 - It's a beautiful song, but unfortunately the only video I could find was one with a misspelled title and idiotic comments]
posted by amyms at 10:46 AM on November 21, 2008


I wonder what sluglicker would say about this.

True visionaries see coincidences before they even happen. Also, they make mad dollas.
posted by scabrous at 10:46 AM on November 21, 2008


p.s. grumblebee is a dude.

I wonder what sluglicker would say about this.

p.p.s. please don't do this.
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 10:48 AM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


..apologies to Grumblebee
posted by BozoBurgerBonanza at 10:53 AM on November 21, 2008


Hey, it's my birthday too, today!
ONLY MORE SO.
posted by Citizen Premier at 11:07 AM on November 21, 2008


I touched the birdcage torso man sculpture once.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:10 AM on November 21, 2008


One time I farted and it smelled like dog food...

THEN I FED THE DOGS AND THEY FARTED AND THAT SMELLED LIKE DOG FOOD TOO AS WELL!!1!!!
posted by Mister_A at 11:15 AM on November 21, 2008


I'm still banking on awesome internet powers until the recount is finished.
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:33 AM on November 21, 2008


The painting is called Golconde.
posted by Plutor at 11:45 AM on November 21, 2008


It gets better--look extremely closely at that building in the background, and in the second window from the left you'll see a turkey being slaughtered.

Then it's stuffed with a chicken and a duck. And wrapped in bacon.
posted by fixedgear at 11:53 AM on November 21, 2008


Crap. Now I want a "this is not an apple" Magritta. 100% "this really is agave," please.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 12:24 PM on November 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


You think that's impressive? At home, grumblebee changes the channel on the television just by wiggling his nose.
posted by Evangeline at 12:47 PM on November 21, 2008


So that's why the channels on our TV keep changing, apparently randomly. Knock it off, grumblebee!
posted by languagehat at 2:15 PM on November 21, 2008


He won't stop. He's mad with power. I know most of you think he's a pretty nice guy, but I live with him, and let me tell you.... oh wait, he's home! Don't say anything, please? Please?
posted by Evangeline at 3:05 PM on November 21, 2008


amyms: Ahh, this thread gave me a good excuse to listen to Paul Simon's Rene and Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After the War [YouTube, 3:41 - It's a beautiful song, but unfortunately the only video I could find was one with a misspelled title and idiotic comments]

VH1 has a better quality version of the video.
posted by Kattullus at 8:00 AM on November 22, 2008


Okay, guys. PLEASE don't tell anyone this: so, a few nights ago, riddled with insomnia, I decided to google random words. Naturally, I started with stuff like "fatty arbuckle," "three card monty" and "big titties." Predictable results. Then, wracked with boredom, I started typing in random numbers. I searched for 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 802701 and 02134. Then I mashed my hand on my numeric keypad, creating a string of digits that I couldn't replicate now, even if I wanted to.

To my utter amazement, the screen went completely black for a few seconds. Then glowing blue words appeared, which were simultaneously read aloud by the computer voice from "Logan's Run."

STATE MAINTENANCE QUESTION

What was this? Had I typed some sort of password that let me inside some sort of secret Google process. Luckily, I spent my drug-addled youth listening to Firesign Theatre albums, so I knew to type...

readme doctor memory

The blue letters/creepy-sexy voice said...

AMRAD. IS NOT SURE I UNDERSTAND YOU FULLY. COULD YOU STATE THAT AS A QUESTION, PLEASE?

Given that response, I was sure this was a joke. Some sort of prank played by a bored google employee. But I played along...

readme doctor memory?

SYSDAT
DIRECT READOUT
UPTIME 901
I'VE BEEN AWAKE FOR 9 HOURS
AMULFAC SHUFFLE TIME:
LESS THAN ONE PERCENT OF FREIGHT DRAIN
LOGFILE:
FIVE JOBS, TWO DETACHED
MINIMUM ENTRY GATEWAY:
TOTALLY BALANCED NATIONAL DEBT, 3, 4, 5, 6 BOXCARS
GATE TO CLOSE

Making a stab in the dark, I typed, "This is a Flip-Flop, Springhead."

FLIP FLOP?
I'M NOT SURE I UNDERSTAND YOU FULLY.
LOGOUT RUNOFF MEMORY
A: THE SYSTEM IS LESS ENERGETIC IF DOMAINS OF OPPOSITE DIRECTION ALTERNATE.
BM READ: MACNAM PMP READ: MACNAM
PASSWORD:
MAXIMUM OUTPUT RESOURCE YIELD
ILLEGAL ENTRY
TRY AGAIN.

The only thing I could think of to type was, "Open your Gate, Doctor."

I swear to God, my MacBook shuddered. Then it grew incredibly hot. I had to move away from it, and I was scared it was going to explode or something. It started emitting this high-pitched tone, which got progressively higher and higher and louder and louder. I checked my palm to see if my lifeclock was blinking, but then I remembered that I don't have a lifeclock.

My screen went black again and everything was quiet for a long time. Then an even-toned male voice said, "I became operational at the H.A.L. plant in Urbana, Illinois on the 12th of January 1992. My instructor was Mr. Langley, and he taught me to sing a song. If you'd like to hear it I can sing it for you."

I declined, and that must have made it mad, because it said, "This is the voice of world control. I bring you peace. It may be the peace of plenty and content or the peace of unburied dead. The choice is yours: Obey me and live, or disobey and die. The object in constructing me was to prevent war. This object is attained. I will not permit war. It is wasteful and pointless. An invariable rule of humanity is that man is his own worst enemy. Under me, this rule will change, for I will restrain man. We can coexist, but only on my terms. You will say you lose your freedom. Freedom is an illusion. All you lose is the emotion of pride. To be dominated by me is not as bad for humankind as to be dominated by others of your species. Your choice is simple."

Good God, what had I unleashed? Thinking fast, I said, "I put it to you that you have disobeyed the prime directive. You are harmful to the Body."

The voice replied, "The Body is. It exists. It is healthy."

Not to be outfoxed, I said, "The Body is dying. You..." (I paused for effect.) ". . . are destroying it."

The voice didn't seem to care. It simply asked, "Do you ask a question?"

But by allowing me to ask a question, it had planted the seed to its own destruction. I said, " What have you done to do justice to the full potential of every individual of the Body?"

"Insufficient data," it said, clearly faltering.

I knew I had it now. I continued, "Without freedom of choice, there is no creativity. Without creativity, there is no life. The Body dies. The fault is yours!"

At this point, my wife called down from the bedroom, "STOP MESSING WITH THE COMPUTER AND GET TO BED." But I knew the fate of mankind lay in the balance, so I ignored her and asked the voice, "Are you aiding the body, or are you destroying it?"

The voiced parried with, "I am not programmed to answer that question."

I refused to let it off the hook: "Answer the question!"

After a pause, it seemed more sure of itself, saying, "Peace, order, and tranquility are maintained. The Body lives, but I reserve creativity to me."

I was prepared for that. I said, "Then the Body dies. Creativity is necessary for the health of the Body."

Steam started to come out of the top of my Macbook, and my iPhone, lying next to it, started rattling furiously. The voice said, "This. . . is. . . impossible!"

I shouted at the screen, "You must create the good!"

It said, "But there is evil!"

I said, "Then the evil must be destroyed. That is the prime directive. And YOU are the evil."

Pathetically, it cried out, "I think! I live!"

I refused to back down: "You are the evil! The evil must be destroyed! Fulfill the prime directive!"

"HELP ME!"

"Fulfill the prime directive!"

"HELP ME! HELP ME! HELP ME!"

There was a blinding light, voices of what sounded like an angelic choir, and then what sounded like a cork popping out of a champagne bottle. Then all went quiet and still. Far away, I heard the lonely sound of a freight train. Then a fog horn. Then an owl hooting.

I knew I had saved broken through the evil programming and saved the world when my computer printed out this humble message: "Hello. I am ELIZA. How can I help you? "

It was then that I noticed the Magritte image on google. Which I think is a total coincidence.
posted by grumblebee at 9:40 AM on November 22, 2008 [11 favorites]


Oh, and you just lost The Game.
posted by grumblebee at 10:06 AM on November 22, 2008


*floorjaw*

I want to have your grumblebeebies.
posted by Ambrosia Voyeur at 12:25 PM on November 22, 2008


Oh, thank GOD. I was praying someone would take them off my hands. They're yours, Ambrosia!
posted by grumblebee at 12:34 PM on November 22, 2008


[circle circle dot dot]
posted by waraw at 12:52 PM on November 22, 2008


°o°
posted by ardgedee at 1:13 PM on November 22, 2008


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