PITTSFIELD

A few random thoughts.
I'm always trying to figure out ways to make money. The other day, I was in a local video store and a woman ahead of me was trying to think of a video she wanted to rent.

"It stars that guy, you know, he was in that TV show a few years back," she said. "I forget the name of the show, but it was really, really funny. Oh! You know what? The TV show is on, I think, Thursday night. No wait, it was on Tuesday night.

"Anyway," she said, "the movie was set a couple of years ago, in some city, and the guy met this girl. She's pretty funny, too."

OK, you get the idea.

Anyway, I was thinking of trying to figure out an app that would search for movies given that incredibly random and inexact data. The clerk would punch in that data and something would pop up.

Maybe it would just be able to give a customer a choice of films, but I think it would be incredibly helpful in video stores. Or maybe a customer should at least try to remember the name of the movie or the name of the actor who stars in the movie.

n

I was sorting my socks the other day, and I realized that that I don't have to bundle them in pairs now. (In fact, I don't even have to sort them! I never have to worry about mismatched socks again! How's that for turning lemons into lemonade?)

But, of course, because I'm a pretty obsessive-compulsive guy in some ways, I still do bundle them. So it was, that with a sense of incredible freedom, I just threw my washed socks into my sock drawer.


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Yeah!

But Wednesday morning, I opened my sock drawer to pick out my one sock, and was, frankly, appalled at how messy it all looked. Black socks, Navy blue socks and a huge assortment of white athletic socks all mooshed up into one big pile.

Simply put, that was totally unacceptable. So I spent several minutes, maybe longer, sorting them and bundling them into pairs again.

(The astute reader might ask that if I only use one sock per day, I must have to unbundle a pair every day and every day have -- one left over! So why isn't my sock drawer a jumble of socks anyway? The answer is that I use one sock the first day and the second sock the next day. Got it?)

n

I was at Hancock Shaker Village on Sunday afternoon, talking with a bunch of folks who were part of the Country Fair event.

In addition to having some of the nicest employees in the world, the village is one of those places I wish I visited more often.

When I was younger, I didn't really know much about the Shakers. I remember, in fact, complaining to a former co-worker that I didn't understand the importance of preserving the culture of "some obscure religious sect."

But when I was talking to Billy Mangiardi, the director of the village's farm and facilities, he made some interesting points about Shaker technology. For instance, even their chicken coops were built to retain heat and sunlight. And while I realize that a lot of cultures were very meticulous in how they used their resources, the Shakers were especially so. This, I know, isn't a very deep thought, but I'm glad I figured it out for myself. With Mangiardi's help, of course.