Anecdotes/jokes from Peter

On looking through some old files, I found a file from mid-1989 titled “peter.anecdotes.” He must have sent me these notes in email at some point (see a forthcoming entry about Peter and email), but I don’t know exactly when (probably early ’89), and I’m not sure whether these three paragraphs were all in the same message or in different ones.

Here’s the contents of the file:

When the poet Gregory Corso (Allen Ginsberg’s Friend) was 21 he went into a police station in Brooklyn and announced “Now that I have attained my majority I demand to be executed!” (Some sens’a huma’, some people have….) They not only didn’t oblige him, they confined him to Belleview for observation for a few weeks. The day I was 21 I went into a tavern where I’d been drinking for 3 years, feeling deliciously legal: “Today’s my birthday Jack — buy me a beer…!” “Here — how old are ya?” “TWENTY-ONE!” “Arrgghh!!” I imagine you can come up with something better than these for yours.

Did you hear about the Dan Quayle bond issue? No principles, no interest, and never matures. Dan Quayle asked his opinion about Rowe vs. Wade: “Yeah, well, those are two ways to get across the Potomac…?”

Ok, I’m going back to work — it was nice talking to you…. It was far out that I’d ask you for the first time a question that for the first time you had a non-empty answer for…. The Cosmic Coincidence Control Center also arranged last week for me to write a letter to my boss detailing a scenario whereby a user could get “permanently” locked out of his/her system (at least until the CMOS chip is electrically discharged by removing the battery for a while). The author of the BIOS, a likable guy from Italy, assured me for twenty minutes that this scenario was outlandish and would never happen in a billion years etc. That afternoon, for the first time in more than a year, the “worst-case” happened in the product manager’s lab (a system in which a password had never been specified suddenly demanded one…). All and sundry were blown away. Why do ducks dive into the water? (For divers’ reasons…) Why do ducks lie on a rock in the sun? (For sun-dry reasons…) Enough.

I posted the Peter-turning-21 story in this blog a while back, but I figured it was worth posting his version.

I think the question he mentions above was probably something like “Do you have a girlfriend?” Although the timing on that doesn’t seem right. Not sure.

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