GOOD NEWS! Today I turn my column space over to a far more intelligent source of commentary: you. And to anyone who thinks I am a lazy waste-of-space using material from readers to save myself work, I would respond: Yeah? So? Are you saying that we lazy waste-of-space types are automatically bad people? Huh, huh?
Anyway, I quoted one line recently which triggered a rush of comments and emails: thanks, Chris, Grandpa, Liftie, Ram and other readers. The line was this:
“There are 10 types of people in the world: those who understand binary and those who don't.”
First, thanks to readers who explained that in binary, a mathematical language, 01 is how you write “one” and 10 is how you write “two”.
An even smarter reader wrote a response in ternary, a mathematical language in which the number three is written “10”. He wrote:
“There are 10 kinds of people in the world: those understand ternary, those who don't, and those who think this is going be a binary joke.”
Lucky for me, other readers, using the comment column and email, offered one-liners suitable for the social cluster to which I belong (“Stupid People”).
Here are the first three to arrive.
1) “For my grandfather, there were two kinds of people in the world: Those who agreed with him, and those who hadn’t yet agreed with him.” (Anon).
2) “There are two types of people in this world, good and bad. The good sleep better, but the bad seem to enjoy the waking hours much more." (Woody Allen).
3) “There are two kinds of people in the world, those who believe there are two kinds of people in the world and those who don’t.” (Robert Benchley).
A reader named Lift Lurker, also known as Otis, wondered if jokes like these were illegal now:
“There are two types of people in the world. But we are not allowed to differentiate them due to anti-discrimination laws.”
Mandy Chen, a reader from Hong Kong, came up with a good one:
“There are two types of music lover in the world: those who think Justin Bieber is a terrible singer, and Justin Bieber.”
Several readers sent in aphorisms on the following lines:
“There are two steps for success. 1) Don’t tell all you know.”
Emily E. wrote this:
“There are two kinds of people in this world. Those who love me and those who haven’t met me yet.”
A gentleman who did not wish to see his name in print wrote:
“There are supposedly two types of people in the world, men and women. So what about the people with short frilly dresses and big shoulders on the street at Sukhumvit Soi 4 in Bangkok?”
The next two quotes I categorize as Baffling.
1) The first comes from the movie Rhinestone:
“There are two kinds of people in this world, and you ain't one of 'em.”
2) The next comes from rock star Captain Beefheart:
“There are only forty people in the world and five of them are hamburgers.”
This came from a computer geek:
“There are two types of people in the world: those who have banged their heads against their keyboards in frustration and those who will.”
But my favorite line so far came from a reader named Jaya in Sri Lanka:
“There are two types of people in this world: Those who can extrapolate from incomplete data and…?”
IN OTHER NEWS….
BOOK NEWS: Lots of interesting incremental steps taking place on the book front.
The first edition of the Mr Jam book (which will sort of be “the origin of Mr Jam”) has finally reached layout stage, yay!
Two filmmakers, one a VERY BIG one from California, are trying to get options for The Feng Shui Detective.
Books one and two of The Magic Mirror, a series for kids, is selling pleasantly well in India and will be launched in other countries in the near future.
Grandpa’s book is available in French and English, and I hope he is working on a follow up. Jason also reports good progress on his book, which had just been completed.
YOUNG SPEECHMAKER: One of our smartest young readers Pradyumn Dayal, aged 12, is a finalist in the top ten of the all-Hong Kong Standard Chartered public speaking contest. He’s the youngest out of 2,200 contestants, so this is already a huge achievement. There’s an online voting round, so if you are a Hong Konger and want to support him, log on to this link, and click on “let’s vote”, but not until the site goes live at 6pm tonight (Wednesday March 21). Go Prady!
ANYONE ELSE working on a book?