Do You Remember the Fear?

By force of an old habit I read Livejournal blogs through the website instead of Bloglines. I immediately regretted that because once again almost made a mistake of writing about a private post. Livejournal marks private posts with little locks, and I once very stupidly discussed some non-public information about an LJ user without realizing that it was from a locked or “friends only” post. Eeek, I cringe just remembering that. Anyway, this time I got permission to post about this (even though I will try to keep away from “locked” posts as much as possible). Upc747 was very kind to let me use this photo of an old newspaper that he took:

The Soviets are gone, but Iraq and Iran are still troublesome. And you know what? I’ll take the War on Terrorism over the Cold War. It seems like all the Generation X-ers and Boomers suddenly forgot the terrible, paralyzing fear of the global atomic war. Not the fear of North Korean or terrorist nukes or conventional attacks, but the dark gut feeling, the stomach churning certainty that the Soviet Union and the United States will annihilate the entire world in one final showdown.

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists set the Doomsday Clock at seven minutes to midnight in 2002. It seems that in the years when the clock was at 9, 10, 14 and even off-the-scale 17 minutes everyone seems to have forgotten all about the fear of World War III. Do the people that say that the world at the turn of the new century is crazier than before remember the ominous 1984, when the clock stood at three minutes to midnight? The time when few people thought that the arms race will result in the collapse of the Soviet Union, but almost everyone was certain that the end of human race in nuclear inferno was almost assured?

I Wonder What Are They Shaped Like

A man is walking down the street in New York City when he comes across a shop with clocks and watches hanging in the front window.
”Good!” he thinks to himself. ”I can get my watch fixed.”
He walks into into the shop and says to the man behind the counter, ”My watch stopped a couple days ago. I’d like you to fix it.”
The shopkeeper replies incredulously, ”I don’t repair watches, I’m a mohel!”
”Then why do you have all those watches and clocks hanging in your window?”
The mohel replies, ”What would you suggest I hang there?”

View From the “Office” of Deadprogrammer

One thing that I see daily from the scratched window of my mobile “office” is the Clock Tower Building. Basically it’s a building in a neighborhood called DUMBO (a cutesy acronym for “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass”). Many recently formed New York neighborhoods have cutsy acronym names. Like SoHo copycats NoLita (North of Little Italy) and NoHo (North of Houston). They remind me of dying internet consulting companies Scient, Viant and Sapient and probably already dead members of Politburo Zaikov, Slunkov and Vorotnikov (they were always mentioned together).

Clock Tower or Clocktower building used to be called “Gair Building No. 7” after Robert Gair, inventor of the corrugated cardboard box.

The building has a unique feature – a penthouse apartment with windows in a form of a clock. Which actually shows time.

The view from there is amazing. I think it’s a bargain at 4 million bucks.

I’ve rented my apartment sight unseen after the asshole real-estate agent showed me another apartment in the same building which had an OK view of Brooklyn. What I didn’t realize was that my apartment was facing another building. Yeah, I am a sucker for views.