Tales of Idiocy and Woe...But Now I'm CRAZY in California!

Friday, October 07, 2005

A Close Call...

...Yup. I had a close call today. I almost went to jail for pirating illegal software. "What?", you say...How did that happen? Well, it's a real short story. A customer came in and was mad that his computer came with the trial version of a certain office program that everyone in the entire world has 96 illegal copies of. So I tried to explain to him that since software is written by people who do so vocationally, it logically follows that those people, again who write the software for their employment, would charge money for their labours. I mean, how come all the blue collar guys (painters, electricians, riggers, drywallers, mechanics, etc.) who come into my store...the real "working man" kinda guys...who charge me outrageous rates for their services when I need them to do something for me...how come they somehow think that they're the only people on this planet who work for a living? I mean, does software grow on trees? Do I have a money tree that I don't know about? (If I had a dime for everytime people with a $60,000 truck made a huge fuss about my charging them $85.60 for spending 2 hours fixing their computer that they virused up with their idiotic usage of limewire...)

So anyway, after I tried to explain that software costs money, he ask me, openly and out loud, if I could give him a hacked copy. For real.

"Well, could you just give me a copy?" (with appropriate wink)

So, in an effort to clarify, I restated his question to make sure I understood what he was asking me:

"So you're asking me, in my place of business, if I would give you an illegally copied, illegitimate, hacked, black market version of (program name)? You're asking if I will pirate software for you that I would normally sell and make money on? You're asking me to essentially shoot myself in the foot by giving you, for free, something that I normally sell for $299?"

He then kinda grinned and looked me in the eye and said "yes" (for real...he must of thought I was joking or something...).

I then looked him in the eye and said "I'm sorry. I'm not sure if you're aware of this, but stealing is against the laws of every nation that I've ever heard of, including the one in which we live. Software piracy is a form of theft and as such, is illegal. I'm not going to risk going to jail for you, in case you're an under cover cop trying to trick me. I'm also not going to risk the massive fines associated with software piracy, in case you're Bill Gates and trying to trick me. And I'm finally not going to give you, for free, something that would normally generate revenue that is used for me to afford things like housing and food, in case you're my landlord and trying to trick me. So no, I will not give you a pirated copy of that software. Good try for asking though!"

He then colorfully suggested that I perform a sexual action that I'm sure is quite physically impossible, and left in quite a vexed state. I felt so sorry for that man.

This leads me to a riddle:

Q: What is the crime that is also it's very own punishment?

A: Being an fool.

No kidding. Being a fool is a crime; but the punishment for being a fool is itself being a fool. Fools do foolish things because they are fools, but in the performing of foolishness they become greater fools. What's a fool to do? Worse yet, what are we to do with fools? Well, I have actual suggestions on my other blog that deals with such philosophical questions...but here I'll skip the philosophical banter and drop to the bottom line, which is usually the same question:

Q. What would King Solomon, the wisest man who's ever lived, do?

A. Give them a good beating.

Hey! Don't blame me! It's in the Bible! Proverbs 18:6, 19:29, 20:30, 26:3. So the next time a fool is being a fool in front of you, do him a favour and help him out; find yourself a big rod and beat him good. Until Next Time,

The Armchair "Help a fool: Beat him good!" Geek.

***disclaimer - if you take that last part seriously, beware! YOU most likely have a beating headed your way soon!***


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