In this Episode of AVDP

Serving is a hard job

I declare that being a server or bartender is a very easy job that nearly anyone can do with a fair degree of competency. Servers are generally a whiney bunch of brats that refuse to see how good they have it.

Based on a long series of whiney facebook posts about bad tips, and Mr. Pink’s monologue from Reservoir Dogs that is more true now than ever before.

Experience: Working as a server, cashier, delivery driver, restaurant manager. Also having many server friends.

Black dildo explained

Adam finally explains what that black dildo is all about. The short version is, he wanted to use a black dildo as a practical joke, found a great deal while ordered (3 for 19.99) so he ended up with three. Over the years one of them ended up at my house and here we are.

Millions and billions

Adam hates how the words million – billion – trillion sound so similar. They open up the door to confusion which wouldn’t be a risk if they sounded totally different.

Originally when Adam pitched this idea to me I thought it was stupid because of how much sense it makes. However after some more thinking I realize that ten – hundred – thousand – million all sound nothing alike. It isn’t until after million that everything sound the same. So I agree now.

What’s the deal with budgets?

Companies, organizations and departments often have assigned budgets that “reset” every period. Which often incentivizes these groups to make seemingly idiotic purchases to “use it” before they “lose it.”

One clear example being how the University of Minnesota managed it’s technology budget by replacing already top of the line machines with even MORE top of the line machine to professors who certainly didn’t need them.

What would a world be like in which budgets rolled over year after year? Would new problems arise? Or would they just become more responsible with spending?


While writing this it actually occurred to me that any unspent money might have to be classified as taxable income. For example if a company posts a profit of 1 million they would be taxed on that profit. But if a company only posted a profit of 100,000 while dumping the remaining 900,000 into various departments budgets that they “had to spend” they would dodge a huge amount of taxes. I suppose spending 900,000 on seemingly stupid things is still better than paying 350,000 to the government for nothing…

Who controls the self?

Adam asks a philosophical question. Who decided what he likes and doesn’t like? How come he used to really be into baseball but now he doesn’t care about baseball at all?

Hypothetical: should the government be able to scan all images posted to social media for illegal activity?

This get’s into a deeper issue in which we discuss how the government should use tools and power to enforce the law. Adam is more concerned with liberty and would rather have a “pro-criminal” system in which police are hindered from investigating people. While I take a more pro-law enforcement approach in order to stop maximum crime.

My basic statement is technology is a tool, not a form of power. Police power should be kept in check with the law, not by preventing them from using technology to their benefit.

Picks of the Week

Pushbullet / Get Pocket

Very similar free apps that let you save interesting content and access it at a later time on a different device. Look them up on the chrome web store or the apple app store and change the way you consumer content!

People’s History of the World

Chris Harman describes the shape and course of human history as a narrative of ordinary people forming and re-forming complex societies in pursuit of common human goals. Interacting with the forces of technological change as well as the impact of powerful individuals and revolutionary ideas, these societies have engendered events familiar to every schoolchild—from the empires of antiquity to the world wars of the twentieth century.

In a bravura conclusion, Chris Harman exposes the reductive complacency of contemporary capitalism, and asks, in a world riven as never before by suffering and inequality, why we imagine that it can—or should—survive much longer. Ambitious, provocative and invigorating, A People’s History of the World delivers a vital corrective to traditional history, as well as a powerful sense of the deep currents of humanity which surge beneath the froth of government. Check it out.

Liar’s Dice

Many people already know this game, but I did not. The good news is, you can play it ANYWHERE because you can simply download a dice-roller app on your phone with your friends! How to play.


My boy Sirlin, who has made a variety of games that have been picks on the podcast including Yomi and Puzzle Strike, is coming out with a new game called Codex. I’ll get the Kickstarter link in here as soon as I have it.

3 replies
  1. Joan
    Joan says:

    Interesting site. Stopped by to check out my SIL’s favorite tie knot and I kept reading. (Since I am 48, female and never play video games, hopefully that tells you that your content is pretty decent. I’ll probably stop by again.) Anyway, this is a response to your summary about budgets, and not the whole podcast, because I prefer to read.

    There is a sneaky little detail about government that you apparently don’t know. Here is how it works. If a unit does not spend every last penny of their budget in the fiscal cycle, the amount that they don’t spend gets automatically deducted from their budget for the next cycle. They often lose an additional percentage, as well. That is the “thanks” they get for being efficient. Unfortunately, bureaucrats are generally prevented from reasonably considering that having a year with below-normal costs might be an exception and that the next year might not go so well. Actually rewarding a unit with more money, because they did a good job of fiscal management, is completely out of the question. Bureaucrats are not inherently stupid; usually there are some rules somewhere that say they must allocate funds this way. Lower level managers are forced to spend money at the end of budget cycles to protect their units, and whomever they serve, against the possibility that the following year might have unexpected expenses or just normally higher expenses due to inflation. If they don’t, they will soon find themselves with inadequate funding after only one or two “good” (fiscally well managed) years.

    This incredibly stupid situation has been in place since before I entered the workforce in the 80s, but it has gotten a lot worse over the years. I don’t know where the idea originated. “Balanced budget” laws make this even worse for a variety of reasons.

    For-profit accounting is not required to follow “use it or lose it” budgeting, although it often does. Your are essentially correct that money that does not get spent is considered profit. There are lots of accounting mechanisms that can be used to disguise revenues-in-excess-of-expenses, aka “profit” so that tax is avoided. All normal US companies do this to the greatest possible extent so that they pay little to no income tax.

    One last thing, regarding the Electoral College and Trump. The Electoral College has elected a President who did not secure the popular vote four times: three times in the 19th century and again in 2000. The use of the Electorial College has been controversial since the beginning; it solves some problems and creates others. OTOH, until the late 20th century, having an accurately counted direct election from the popular vote was simply not possible due to the time constraints of counting each ballot by hand.

    • Joan
      Joan says:

      Out of curiosity, I listened to the podcast and discovered that, yes, you actually know most of this stuff. The bit about managerial bonuses applies almost exclusively to for-profit rather than government enterprises. The idea is to motivate the manager to manage money efficiently. Keep in mind that most of these practices including issues with days off and the like, came from an era where everything was done by hand. Imagine a world where a one page spreadsheet with fewer than 20 lines took an entire day to create because each cell was done with a non-programmable hand-held calculator without a function key….


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