It is an old saying. “Speak of the Devil and he will appear”. Like most superstitions it has enough validity to be worth heeding, so if I appear to be speaking obliquely about our recent computer difficulties it is for good reason. I would not myself open up a blog post that directly referenced, er, computer cooties. And since the creators of these execrable internet infestations appear to employ specialized search programs looking for particular phrases, well, just as people in the Harry Potter universe will not speak the name of “You Know Who”, neither will I come straight out and say that one of our home systems has recently started coughing, wheezing and in general displaying all the symptoms of influenza.
It is a sad affliction of the modern age. In times past, I am given to understand, this sort of electronic crab grass was generally to be found in sites offering to show you even more surface area of already scantily clad B-list celebutants. Now, if my post facto sleuthing can be credited, it appears you are more likely to encounter unwelcome things popping up on websites related to knitting and gardening!
I suppose the enthusiastic but perhaps technologically naïve creators of such homey home pages are more easily duped by the shifty crooks who concoct this sort of nonsense. Many of these are said to be citizens of Eastern European countries where both the laws and those who enforce them are slack. Almost makes one nostalgic for the Cold War era where we could count on the Stasi to kick down some doors and haul the grifters blinking out into the sunlight as they entrain for a labor camp in
Which got me to thinking. What should be the appropriate punishment for those who so greatly inconvenience the internet users of the world?
Let’s straight off dismiss the suggestions proffered by my Gentle Spouse. She is a compassionate human being, an opponent of capital punishment and a real softy when minor indiscretions, perhaps on the part of small or large boys, require some expression of sternness. Even stomping of indoor spiders is subcontracted to your truely.
But regards her murderous intent towards these Bulgarian Pests, well it puts her venomous imprecations against garden bunnies to shame, and I will spare you her vitriol.
I would just give them a gentle noogie.
Of course you should remember that I am both an Anglophile and a traditionalist. This would make me some species of Tory I suppose.
So I would advocate a revival of the old Royal Navy punishment of flogging ‘round the Fleet.
In this most dreaded of punishments a serious malefactor would be put in a boat which would be rowed up alongside of every anchored warship in the harbor. He would get a certain number of lashes at each station, and since this punishment was generally meted out at a time when the teachable moment would reach the maximum audience this was inevitably a situation where you did not have to ask what would happen should this poor chap re-offend.
So if the corrupt security forces of some former Soviet republic actually lay hands on one of the creators of our recent difficulties I suggest he be hauled around to the front door of every computer user on earth to get a gentle noogie from each. I figure we will have him worn down to a Slavic residue long before reaching our humble manse.
Follow up note.
Absent the above opportunity for just deserts I am left with the option of employing my own modest computer skills to tidy things up. Should these fail I have to resort to seeking the wisdom of one who knows well the power of the Dark side but is never tempted to stray into it. One who is strong in the Force but speaks in riddles constructed of odd syntax.
No, not this guy, but my local computer service guy does resemble him in many ways.
Reboot my system I shall.