stupid people

The Slashdot Asshat(s) Who Stole My Pictures

Last week I took back a Slashdot user account under my pen name with a DMCA takedown notice. The quick response by management scared the asshats into silence for 48 hours. A different group of asshats started harassing me towards the weekend. One of them posted a link to my 350-pound picture from my author website. When I clicked on the link and noticed that the picture was from May 2016, I replaced the image with a picture taken last month by saving to the same filename.  That provoked an angry response for not using different filenames. The response puzzled me until I realized that my jowls were puffier in the 2016 picture, the “ten-pound tire” around my neck that the asshats love to moan about. I then implemented a 403 (forbidden) rule in the .htaccess file to prevent the external linking of my images and created a Slashdot page with the 2017 picture on my author website. Those actions provoked even more anger. The retaliation was my 2016 picture appearing on image websites. Out came the DMCA takedown notices to protect my pen name and copyrights.

The first image website was Hosting Pics, a French-based picture website that U.S. law like the DMCA doesn’t apply to. I initially tried the contact form that appears dodgy (i.e., “Unable to find MySQL database.”), tried again successfully, and found a contact email address to send the DMCA takedown notice (just in case the contact form was dodgy after all). The email I got the next morning indicated that the source was the contact form, informing me that my picture got removed. Less than 24 hours later, an asshat uploaded the picture and left me a note in French“I think that’s it. Good morning, Heavy Barbara.” Another request got the picture removed the following morning.

Other locations included 4chan and Imgur. Both had email addresses for sending DMCA takedown notices. I got an email from 4chan the next morning that my picture got removed. Imgur didn’t send out an email notification but they did remove my picture the following afternoon.

An asshat pointed out that Google has cached copies of my pictures that will live forever on the Internet and there was nothing I could do about it. That comment made me laugh.

Google has a help page for removing images from the search results, especially deleted images that are no longer accessible to the web crawlers. By placing a 403 rule to prevent external linking to all my images, the search engine regards those images as deleted. A removal request gets those links out of the search results sooner rather than later. After 4chan removed my picture from their site, I put in a request to remove those links. With a half-dozen open requests, I should have the search results cleaned up in a few days.

I’m once again enjoying the calmness that comes from scaring off the asshats with my awesome powers as a content creator. The few asshats who are still around are sharing a link to my picture, but this time it’s the Slashdot link to my author website. The more exposure that link gets, the more web traffic and ad revenues I get. Since the brouhaha with the asshats got started three months ago, I made $80 in ad revenues as curious readers left Slashdot to visit my websites. As Warren Buffett once said, “When it’s raining gold, reach for a bucket, not a thimble.”

DMCA’ing The Slashdot Asshat Who Stole My Pen Name

I had running battles with the asshats (a.k.a., Anonymous Cowards) on Slashdot for the last three months, starting with the asshat who falsely accused me of threatening to shoot him, the asshats who claim that only “real nerds” making $200,000+ per year in Silicon Valley can read Slashdot, and the other asshats who hound me for being the fat retarded kid on the short bus. For some of these asshats, replying to my comments isn’t enough for them. They started their own comment threads without me, posting how I sucked my cock all day (this is what a $100,000+ university education gets you these days). I took all this in stride as success in life means putting up with all the haters. That is until I noticed a user account in my pen name, “cdreimer” (4974007), replying obscenely to my comments as if they were from me. This was no longer personal, it became business. At the start of the Memorial Day weekend, I filed a DMCA takedown notice to protect my pen name and, indirectly, my copyrights. This morning I “pwned” the account, “cdreimer” (4977441) — and silencing the asshats for a while.

My user account, “creimer” (824291), existed ten years before I started using my pen name for publication and prior to the Dot Com Bust in 2001. I never bothered to create a user account for my pen name as I didn’t consider Slashdot as a platform for attracting a literary audience. With the asshats hounding me day-to-day over my comments that drove traffic to here (my personal blog), Slashdot became a new ad revenue stream for my side business. I read and write my comments as I normally do each day, the asshats make an epic fuss, and curious readers click on my “homepage” to come to this blog and enter my somewhat broken marketing funnel for generating revenues.

Another reason for keeping my venerable user account is that I have accumulated 9,167 karma points (see the output below from my Python scraper script).

Pages Processed: 623, Comments (Accepted/Total): 9319/9336
Oldest Date: 2008-08-04, Newest Date: 2017-05-30
Scores  (9167) | -1: 76, 0: 384, 1: 6969, 2: 1004, 3: 400, 4: 328, 5: 158
Bonuses (1250) | Flamebait: 32, Funny: 298, Informative: 199, Insightful: 331, Interesting: 269, Offtopic: 47, Redundant: 11, Troll: 63
Total Time: 00:12:39.00

That was something that the asshat who created the “cdreimer” user account found out in short order. A new user, or “n00b” in the Slashdot vernacular, starts off with little karma. Moderators (mods) will reward karma points to promote (up vote) a comment or demote (down vote) a comment. Those karma points get added or subtracted to the user’s karma count. Too many negative comments will reduce karma to zero and restrict comment posting to twice a day. After a handful of negative comments, “cdreimer” got sidelined by bad karma. That, of course, prompted another user account, “criemer” (4975517), with the letters “e” and “i” switched around, to come into existence, starting this thread where asshats turned on each other as they thought it was me. When I pointed out elsewhere that it wasn’t me, I got called a liar.

Since I get up voted more than I get down voted each day, and I’m a lifetime away from ever having zero karma again, I don’t have to worry about the mods. If I was posting under “cdreimer”, I would have to cultivate karma points (or “karma whoring”) quite carefully for an extended period of time. Given my “rabid” following on Slashdot, I’m sure they will give me hell all the way.

I haven’t filed a DMCA takedown notice in years. Since I started publishing my ebooks in 2010, I would occasionally receive a Google Alert informing me that one of my FREE ebooks got posted in some obscure corner of the Internet. A DMCA takedown notice  was  easy to prove since I can point to my author website as the authoritative source for my ebooks. Over the last seven years, I’ve never had a DMCA takedown notice rejected.

Technically, a DMCA takedown notice doesn’t apply to user accounts. As an attention getter, a DMCA takedown notice is quite effective. I pointed out that I’ve used my pen name for ten years, the three-day-old “cdreimer” account got created for the express purpose of harassing me, and provided the nine comment URLs that my Python scraper script found. When the account got deleted this morning, I immediately created a new user account and posted a comment to prove that I own it now.

As I tried to explain to the asshats, this is business. I have an obligation to protect my pen name and my copyrights. If I don’t, they become worthless over time.

Have I Threatened To Shoot You Today?

I’ve read and commented on Slashdot since the dawn of the Internet (circa 1998). More so in recent years while waiting for a script to finish running at my tech job. I’ll find a topic that I’m interested in, read and respond to the early comments, and, if I want to torment the trolls, a.k.a, AC (Anonymous Cowards), I’ll write a controversial comment and camp out on the thread for the rest of the day. I don’t take this seriously because I’m just killing time. That is until an asshat accused me of threatening to shoot him. Even though I’ve asked three times for the asshat to explain how I threatened to shoot him, today I confronted the asshat by breaking out the crayons and coloring inside the lines.

What comment provoked this accusation? I asserted my First AND Second Amendment rights.

When talking about the U.S. Constitution, there are two groups that typically talk past each other all the time: the First Amendment people who don’t want the Second Amendment people bearing arms in public because they feel intimidated, and the Second Amendment people who loudly proclaim with obvious display of heavy weaponry that their amendment trumps all other amendments and that the First Amendment people should just shut up.

As a moderate conservative (another controversial statement), my belief is that you can’t have one without the other. The First Amendment grants me the right to speak my mind. The Second Amendment grants me the right to bear arms, and, since California isn’t a strong “stand your ground” state, I don’t have the right to shoot anyone’s sorry ass willy-nilly. This “best of both worlds” position typically pisses off the opposing camps.

One asshat ASSumed that my comment constituted a threat to shoot him.

If I was going to shoot that sorry ass asshat, I wouldn’t announce my intentions to do so under a named account on Slashdot. All the police would have to do is click on the home page link for my Slashdot comments, go to my author website and find my picture. The FBI already has my fingerprints. It wouldn’t take long to track me down.

So why draw attention to this controversy?

A group of Slashdot asshats went to my personal website, saw my picture and started calling me fat (among other explicit things). I collected their comments into an F.A.Q. (Frequently Asked Questions) and posted it on my website. Whenever someone called me fat, I posted the link to the F.A.Q in a reply comment and 3,000+ visitors stampeded to my website. That was 15 years ago and long before I had ads on my websites. This blog post is the new F.A.Q. If the asshat accuses me of threatening to shoot him again, I’ll post the link and collect the ad revenues from 3,000+ visitors.

After a two-year hiatus from blogging on Kicking The Bit Bucket, I’m blowing off the cobwebs and getting back to work.

Friday, 30 March 2017 — By popular request on Slashdot, I added a link to the original comment above. Here’s the link for the parent thread. Read and decide for yourself. That sorry ass asshat is still hounding me six weeks later.

A Very Loud Fourth of July in Silicon Valley

Explosion Day @ Penny ArcadeDuring the nine years that I lived in my Silicon Valley studio apartment, most Fourth of July fireworks celebrations were quiet affairs. With the fireworks celebration at the Children’s Discovery Museum being a few miles away, I normally heard the air cannons thumping the earth and a distant boom in the sky. Not this year. Seemed like everyone got multiple boxes of Satan’s Orgasm and blew the neighborhood to Kingdom Come. Fireworks exploded loud enough to set off car alarms and rattle my windows. One idiot lost both hands from lighting a “mortar-type” firework.

Selling, buying and lighting fireworks are illegal in most parts of Santa Clara County. A wise precaution since California is officially in a severe drought and most lawns are various shades of brown. A wayward firecracker could easily set off a grass fire. My friend and I recently tried to get on to the 280 from Meridian Avenue when a fire truck blocked the ramp. As we drove around the fire truck, we saw that the fire started at the base of the embankment, as if a passenger flicked away cigarette, to blacken the dried grass and send plums of white smoke into the air. Fortunately, this stretch of embankment wasn’t large enough to snarl the rest of the freeway.

If you really wanted to get some fireworks, you drove down to Gilroy to get the “safe and sane” fireworks that are nothing but the pale whimper of the fireworks I lit as a child in the 1970’s and the early 1980’s. If you wanted some serious fireworks, you drove down to Mexico City to buy firecrackers by the bricks, bottle rockets by the grocery bags, and cherry bombs by the fistfuls. Some of my friends did that several times in the 1980’s. I’m not even sure if that can still be done today in post-9/11 America.

While going to college in the 1990’s, I visited my parents for Fourth of July in Sacramento. The ubiquitous firework stands of my childhood are still legal there. We bought a small box of fireworks that contained my favorite fireworks: the Ground Bloom Flowers that looked like spinning roses and shifted colors three times before burning out. Alas, the fireworks stands no longer sell the Ground Bloom Flowers or anything else individually. You must buy an entire box set even if you don’t want the sparklers, snakes and screamers.

As I ran errands over the weekend, I talked with the assistant manager at my bank. She lives in a different part of my neighborhood. Not only did she confirmed that fireworks were unusually loud this year, but people were shooting them off on the street in front of her apartment. Walking through the parking lot for CVS, I spotted the burnt out remains of fireworks. It’s one thing to find an empty dumpster to toss a cherry bomb into for a really loud boom or exploding a few fireworks in the front yard. (Or, God forbid, shooting bottle rockets off the balcony as one idiot did several years ago.) Shooting off fireworks in a public parking lot was something else. It certainly wasn’t quiet.

Yaktey Sax Car Chase In Southern California

[youtube url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUYbu5DJA1U]

My aunt in Idaho loves to send out emails with interesting pictures, say, the outdoor toilet seat for the truck hitch in case you really need to take a dump on the road. I’m just enough of a redneck to appreciate the humor despite growing up in California and visiting Idaho only twice in my life for a family reunion (1978) and burying my mother’s ashes with her parents (2004). Most of these emails I glance at and delete immediately, as I can tolerate only so much redneck humor.

My aunt recently sent me this YouTube video of a car chase in Southern California that someone set to The Benny Hill Show theme music (a.k.a., “Yaktey Sax”). A woman driver puts a Toyota Scion and the police through a high-speed chase that went all over a toll road. She even stops at one point to get out of car, as if she was going to speak to the police officers chasing her, and then ran after the car as it drove off without her. California Americana at its finest.

Most Americans know The Benny Hill Show as a half-hour late night comedy show with only the naughty skits, which I watched as a wee lad in the early 1980’s after my parents went to bed. Like most foreign TV shows re-packaged for America, something got lost in the translation. The hour-long variety show in Great Britain featured singers, dances and non-naughty skits. I read somewhere that Benny Hill’s comedy was based on three types of village idiots that were disappearing from modern British society.

Outrunning The Busybody Obese Police

No Fat KidsIf you’re an obese child in America today, you have to outrun the busybody obese police (BOP) who sends letters home from school or trick-or-treating on Halloween night. Of course, it doesn’t help if your birth weight matches a bowling ball. Rather than judging you on your character, the BOP will assume things about your weight and make your life a living hell.

Doctors told my mother that she was going to have twins. After one hour of labor and 250 stitches later, she gave birth to a ten-pound bowling ball. If that wasn’t bad enough, I was a boy and not a girl. As a young child, being overweight wasn’t a problem. Although an undiagnosed hearing lost in one ear was enough to declare me mentally retarded in kindergarten, no one mentioned anything to me about my weight.

The BOP didn’t make an appearance until the sixth grade when teasing by the other retarded boys and girls drove me to tears. The principal and my teacher called my parents into the office to scold them for my bad eating habits. They discovered that my parents were skinny people, assuming that I came from a family of fat people who shoveled junk food into my mouth. Shocked and dismayed that they couldn’t scold my skinny parents, I got sent to the doctors for testing to find an underlying medical problem.

After poking and prodding, the doctors determined I was just a big boy. Genetics wasn’t a common word back then, so no one bothered to look up the family tree. Since my parents moved to California from Idaho in the 1960’s, I didn’t know about my extended family until I was an adult. We had some big men and strong women on both sides of the family. I have inherited the “bigness” gene that has skipped my parents.

By the time I graduated from the eighth grade and dropped out of high school in 1984, I haven’t grown to my full height yet, weighed 400 pounds, had the stomach ulcers and high blood pressure of a Type-A businessman, and hated going to school. I became a shut-in for the next four years as I educated myself from newspapers, magazines and books from the library. On my 18th birthday, I got a ten-speed bike that I rode everywhere and lost 70 pounds in a year.

After I became a Christian and joined the campus ministry at San Jose City College (which I graduated four years later with a general education associate degree), the BOP came roaring back into my life with a vengeance, citing 1 Corinthians 6:19-20“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”

With that scripture in hand, the brothers would give me “friendly” advice about losing weight. This became the source of many conflicts in the ministry because I wasn’t shy about pushing back, especially if I thought their ideas were impractical or unrighteous. I made many enemies as the leadership always ruled against them. After 13 years of pushing and shoving, I got tired of that crap and let them kick me out of the church.

Before I got kicked out eight years ago, I joined a gym and lifted weights. I’m now 5′-10″ tall with 350 pounds and wearing 2XL shirts. I can easily bulk up to 400 pounds in muscle, but finding 4XL shirts is problematic. I’m focused on trimming down to an XL shirt. Except for the occasional fitness nut at work, the BOP has left me alone because I can physically pound them into the ground without trying. As Arnold Schwarzenegger once said, “Bigger guys get better respect.”

The Stupidity of Carrying A Toy Gun in Public

toysA teenager committed suicide in Santa Rosa last week. Wearing a hoodie over his head, carrying a pellet gun replica of an AK-47 assault rifle across his chest and a toy gun inside the waistband of his pants, he probably thought he was some badass gang banger. He was walking down the street when a sheriff cruiser pulled up behind him. With light flashing and the siren screaming, the deputies got behind the doors of their cruiser and ordered the teenager—twice—to drop his weapon. He turned to look back with the gun barrel rising towards the deputies.

Seven shots later, he’s handcuffed and declared dead. Suicide.

When I was a child in West San Jose during the 1970’s, my friends and I played with cap guns. Some of the older teenagers had BB guns for shooting small birds and pockmarking the windows around the neighborhood. San Jose was still rural back then, surrounded by orchards and the suburban sprawl that would later become Silicon Valley. Most stores sold fishing gear, department stores sold hunting rifles. All the kids got taught basic gun safety when playing with toy guns. Anything less would get someone hurt.

Basic gun safety meant you kept the gun barrel pointed to the ground and fingers off the trigger guard when walking down the street. If you’re playing cowboys and Indians, you did it someone’s yard, stay out of the streets and never pointed a cap gun above shoulder height. (Shooting from the hip was popular back then.) And you never ever pointed a toy gun at a police officer under any circumstances. You were likely to get shot—regardless of skin color.

Walking down the street with a hoodie and what looks like an illegal assault weapon in California is asking for serious trouble. I can’t blame the deputies for this one. The gangs are using teenagers to commit murders because the juvenile system provides short prison terms and sealed records. Unless a teenaged murderer gets tried as an adult, he gets a proverbial slap on the wrist and instant street cred with the gang. A bad deal for everyone involved. We don’t need teenagers playing gang bangers with toy guns.

Please No Talking At The Urinal

iStock_000001699103SmallOne of my pet peeves at work is standing at the urinal in the men restroom when somebody comes up to the urinal next to me, unzips his pants and strikes up a conversation. Not the manly grunts to acknowledge the other person existence, but the “Whazzup!” conversational opener. I cannot talk and pee at the same time, a level of multitasking has always eluded me. Talking at the urinal means I need to stop peeing, think about what I need to say, say my piece and resume peeing again. Talking shop is the last thing I want to do at the urinal.

As a child prodigy tragically misdiagnosed as being mentally retarded (whenever I blew the evaluation exam on the genius side the teacher called it a “statistical fluke” every time), the boys restroom was a dangerous area for a fat white boy like myself in the Special Ed class. If someone turns off the lights, the student next to me always turned sideways to spray me with piss. An accident they told the teacher. Yeah, right. Because I rode the little yellow school bus, my mother didn’t drive and my father worked in San Francisco, I had to sit in piss-soaked pants for the rest of the class day and the two-hour bus ride home. My classmates would taunt me that I needed to wear diapers. I’m surprised that I never developed homicidal tendencies towards my classmates.

When I worked as a lead tester at Accolade/Infogrames/Atari (same company, different owners, multiple identity crises), we had more testers than the men restroom could accommodate. The custodians had to clean and stock the restroom three times a day to keep up. Someone always “forgot” to flush one of the toilets in the stalls. If you “read” the toilet bowl like tea leaves in a cup, you can figure out what they had for lunch at Taco Bell. The splatter pattern was different each day, as if someone tossed in a cherry bomb for good measure. I wrote up a proposal for management to install Porta-Potties out in the parking lot. The mad bomber of the restroom eventually left the company.

I did a six-week contract at Sony in 2005 to test what later become the Sony eReader. With no possibility of an extension, I looked for a new job while working on this one. I was standing at the urinal when a woman recruiter at Microsoft called my cellphone, answered the call and stepped away as I zipped up my pants. The urinal, of course, had an automatic flush. She asked if this was a good time to talk. I reassured it was, although my voice echoed in the restroom, Indian coworkers gave me strange looks, and toilet seats got plopped down for business. I conducted many interviews there since I couldn’t find a more private spot elsewhere.

My boss recently asked me for a status report while at the urinal. I had a catastrophic brain freeze. A status report meant collecting data, analyzing it and offering an interpretation relative to yesterday’s status report. That wasn’t a yes/no or one-sentence answer. I hemmed and hawed in answering, both verbally and peeing. As we were washing our hands (separately, of course), I stammered out that I would send him an email and ran out of the restroom. I was fortunate that I didn’t piss my pants.

The Nightmare Continues At Amy’s Baking Company

[youtube url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7uPOGxUtZvk]

For some strange reason, CNBC has made the fifth episode of “The Profit” unavailable on their website unless you have a cable TV subscription. That’s frustrating since I only watch TV online. Fortunately, Hulu had the episode, “LA Dogworks,” available for viewing. Marcus Lemonis tries to turn around a dog daycare center but walks away when the verbally abusive owner refuses to change. One of the reasons why I love watching this show is that Lemonis isn’t afraid of walking away from a bad deal.

Hulu followed that episode with the episode of “Nightmare Kitchen” that featured Gordon Ramsey walking away from the verbally abusive owners of Amy’s Baking Company. I’ve heard about this episode when I read news articles about the owners that are still having a social media meltdownfacing legal issues and retaliating against the critics months after the show aired. As I watched the episode, I couldn’t believe the number of F-bombs that the owners tossed at everyone who disagreed with them. I’m surprised that a “South Park”-styled counter wasn’t keeping track of how many times the F-bomb got mentioned.

If you watch enough episodes of “Restaurant Impossible,” where celebrity chef Robert Irvine spends $10,000 USD to turn around a failing restaurant, most owners are people who never worked in the restaurant business, paid too much money for their restaurant and have no clue on what to do next. There’s more to running a restaurant than opening a new store front, hiring staff and cooking food. Many of these people would have been better off investing their money into a stamp collection.

No surprise that Amy’s Baking Company falls into this all too familiar pattern.

The husband, Samy, a former house builder who gets out of the business long before the housing bubble popped in 2007, asks his wife, Amy, what they should do next. Her dream was to open a restaurant. He sunk a million dollar into the new business. She ran the kitchen, he ran the front desk. Somehow they managed to keep the business going for many years until a blogger writes a bad review that accused them of serving frozen pizza and business falls off dramatically.

Expecting Ramsey to use his reputation to fix their reputation from the “online bullies” boggles the mind. The frequent F-bombs at customers, stealing tips from the staff and serving undercooked frozen foods aren’t something that a celebrity chef’s reputation can paper over. As the cameras revealed on “Nightmare Kitchen” and other reality TV shows, the problems that business owners face are not always external. If they can’t look in the mirror to see the true source of their problems, they and their business will never change for the better.

The Kia Soul of The MTV Video Music Awards 2013

[youtube url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsJiGF_Groo]

I didn’t watch the Miley Cyrus-inspired disaster on the MTV’s Video Music Awards this year. (I never watched these things even when they weren’t controversial.) The only good thing to come out was the new Kia Soul hamster commercial, where the hip-hop hamsters hit the gym to Lady Gaga’s “Applause” song. Kia has gotten a lot of advertising mileage out of these hamsters. I was never a fan of the hamsters until the “In My Mind” commercial appeared in the theaters last year.

A Curious Tale of The American Guillotine

Execution By GuillotineIf you pay any attention to American politics, especially the virulent strain known as the Tea Party that have driven moderate conservatives out of the Republican Party, you get used to hearing about all kinds of conspiracy theories. One of the weirdest conspiracy theory is the United States government buying guillotines, the medieval device that the French used to chop the heads of political prisoners. Why would the government need to buy 30,000 to 50,000 of these contraptions?

The country does have a black president in the White House. The only thing God-fearing white people are afraid of the most is the ANGRY BLACK MAN who can rape and pillage, riot in the cities and destroy Western (white) civilization as we know it. (This was why Trayvon Martin got shot and killed in Florida.) Since the ANGRY WHITE MAN is dying off from old age, it’s only a matter of time before the country goes down the toilet.

The government could declare martial law and summary execute its own citizens at secret detention centers around the country for the following reasons:

The guillotine conspiracy theory doesn’t pan out.

If the U.S. government was buying guillotines, it’s the paper trimmers with the long blade that you pull up and push down by the handle. I’ve always wondered what to call those things besides paper trimmers. No grade school teacher ever called them a guillotine. Maybe because we—the white students who will grow up to vote one day—were gullible and stupid enough to believe that the guillotine might be used for something else besides trimming paper.

Crashing At SFO With Carryon Luggage In Hand

SFO Plane CrashThe Fourth of July weekend was relatively quiet in Silicon Valley. With the downtown San Jose fireworks show cancelled this year, no air cannons thumped the ground a few miles away to launch fireworks. No idiots shot fireworks from their balcony, and, despite a few M-80s going off, the apartment complex didn’t burn to the ground. The only major fireworks was an airplane crash landing at SFO on Saturday, especially this picture showing people exiting the burning airliner with luggage in hand.

I have never taken an airplane trip. That will change next month when I go to Las Vegas for my birthday. My roommate reassured that me that the 737’s that Southwest Airlines flies are older than the 777’s flown by Asiana Airlines. That’s reassuring (I think). If the airplane I’m on does a crash landing on the tarmac, the last thing I’ll do is haul out my carryon luggage from the overhead bin, blocked everyone else in the aisle from getting out, go down the emergency slide and drag it across the tarmac.

From the various reports that I read, first class passengers were able to grab their carryon luggage and head for the slides, business class passengers got stuck as the slides didn’t deploy, and coach passengers got screwed as the tail section hit the seawall and broke off. The more I read about this crash, the more I’m reminded of the sinking of the Titanic in 1912: first class passengers got into the lifeboats, business passengers grabbed whatever else that floated, and everyone else went down with the ship.

The stupidity of some people never ceases to amaze me.

I have to wonder what was so important in their carryon luggage that they couldn’t leave it behind. With airport security being the way it is, I doubt they were trying to smuggle anything valuable through customs like a pouch of diamonds, a stash of weed, or a flock of parrots. One pair stood next to two boxes of duty-free alcohol while watching the airplane burn, raising questions whether the boxes got smuggled on board or stolen from the kitchen area. Since a gaggle of Silicon Valley executives was on this flight, their most valuable possession was probably data on a smartphone in their pants pocket.