Deal 1274: Presented

The device sat on a brilliant blue pedestal at center stage. The stage itself was minimalist, just a slightly raked dark grey disk jutting out into the audience, with seating to all sides and room for the presenter to move around the pedestal and speak more or less personally to each block of seats.

The top of the pedestal rotated slowly, turning the device to show all sides to everyone.

The subdued lighting cast few shadows on the device, and the perfectly clad and coiffed presenters cast no shadows at all.

All of this conspired to make the brass, wood, leather, and glass of the device stand out, showing off its form to the best possible advantage.

And as is typical of a major product announcement, almost nothing about the presentation managed to convey exactly what the device does.

I still want one, though!


Deal 1254: Well dressed Mr. Bond.

Being on a mission did not have to mean I was too short of time to admire this year’s fashions. Especially when the case took us through the core of the district and all the shop windows were freshly decorated.

It stood there on a mannequin, one that lacked details like head, hands, or feet. It was also an unnatural pale blue color. Often, that odd color would throw off the clothes. This time it mostly held the eye long enough for the figure to resonate. Perhaps the black fabric had a hint of the blue cast on it?

The window also held a ballgown or two, probably in blues as that was the fashionable color. But they were secondary. The only thing that mattered was the tuxedo. It called out to me on some base level, perhaps through the use of some subtle magic to reinforce the call, or perhaps just because I suddenly wanted to own that tuxedo.

Regardless, the jacket only needed a touch of tailoring for comfort, almost as if they had sized it to catch my eye then conceal my weapon. Or perhaps some old trickster knew I could be captivated.


Deal 1240: Blended

All the troubles of the world come from striving towards too much purity. The world would be a much better place if everyone would pay less attention to it.

Alloys are often superior to the pure metals. Steel is stronger than iron. Bronze is stronger than copper. Even those metals that are nominally pure, in real life are usually alloys as well.

Composite materials too are usually stronger than any of their materials individually. A spun thread is far stronger than the raw cotton it is made from. A woven cable is stronger yet. Papier mache, fiberglass, and concrete are all considerably stronger than their ingredients alone.

Embrace the blends. Embrace combinations.

Find strength in the combinations of things.

And always beware those that would tell you otherwise.


Deal 1237: The Frog Prince

“I see you’ve found our Prince.”

“Where? All I see is this frog.”

“That is the Prince. Didn’t you notice his purple toes?”

“Not really.”


“I suppose it could be. But I was expecting something a little more, um, princely?”

“That regal bearing doesn’t count?”

“It’s still just a frog!”

“A frog that is a Prince!”

“A frog that doesn’t do me any good!”

“He is the Prince! That ought to be worth something to you.”

“Not a prince! Frog!”