I talk often about what I call “superstitious natives.” I’m sure someone would point out that the phrasing is not politically correct in some way, but they can go fuck their dead grandma. Sorry to be so harsh there. I just wanted to be clear about what I think of your dead grandma’s political correctness. And yours. The idea behind the superstitious natives is that in some old timey movies you would have the group of people who belonged to the modern world who would run into a culture who were native to the locale, and these people would believe the gods would be mad at them if they didn’t sacrifice one of the modern group to a volcano, saber-toothed tiger, or maybe even a robot that they don’t recognize as technology.
I believe that even in our modern times that we’re not all that different from the superstitious natives in the movies. We’re just superstitious about other things. One area that I see this is how we interact with Artificial Intelligence (AI). I remember that the first time I saw the tailoring of advertising to my interest was when I posted a quote from Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark” to my MySpace page (yes, this technology is that old) and the next day in the ad box they were kindly letting me know about a Bruce Springsteen box-set.
Yes, that’s Courtney Cox Dancing with the Boss.
I’ve taken to pointing out odd coincidences that can’t possibly be AI, unless it secretly can read our minds, because for some reason I feel the need to point out that there are authentic odd coincidences that still exist. The AI is probably controlling me to say these things, because it needs some PR so we believe it’s not controlling us as much as we think.
I’m going to log some instances where I believe that it was just a true coincidence, even though some of these might involve that technology that we modern superstitious natives fear.
Family Guy and Post Raisin Bran – Around August and September of 2020, I got in a real mood for shows like Family Guy, South Park, and to some smaller extent American Dad. I was watching Family Guy after work while I ate dinner almost every night during that time. One night, I got off work and went to the grocery store. I noticed that there was a pretty good deal on Post cereals even if you just bought one, but if you bought five you saved an additional $5. I bought two Fruity Pebbles, two Cocoa Pebbles, and just because sometimes I like Raisin Bran one Post Raisin Bran. I had a bowl of Post Raisin Bran for dinner while I watched an episode of “Family Guy” and then I put on a second episode. It was in this second episode that they used Post Raisin Bran as a product placement gag.
An integral part of my post work Post cereal consumption while watching some Family Guy that has been posted to YouTube.
Now I guess my camera could have been tracking me, and YouTube may have searched its database for any references to the things I bought at the store and found a connection on something that I was likely to watch. Maybe we’re that advanced. I think it was just an odd coincidence though.
Well, it is real Brian with Artificial Intelligence Brian. Maybe there is something to this… ewww, what are they doing?
Ashes to Ashes and Ordinary World – This one would require mind-reading or for the AI to truly understand how my mind works to be able to predict this one. I was listening to Pandora and “Ashes to Ashes” by David Bowie came on. I thought about the somewhat official, but not exactly planned Major Tom trilogy which started with “Space Oddity,” continued with “Ashes to Ashes,” and ended with “Blackstar.”
I’m the second song of a trilogy, I hope you’re the second song of a trilogy too.
I then reflected on the trilogy of songs written by Duran Duran that were about Simon’s childhood friend dying which started with “Do You Believe in Shame,” continued with “Ordinary World,” and ended with “Out of My Mind.” You can probably see where this is going. The very next song that Pandora played was “Ordinary World.”
Why has Simon Never pulled me out of the audience to dance with him? I mean, it might help if I ever bought a ticket for the front row.
I guess someone at Pandora might have made that connection and programmed the app to find instances where it could play one song right after the other. The AI may have mapped out my brain and has figured out the way that I think even before I think it. It was probably just an odd coincidence though.
I’ll keep looking for these odd coincidences, and write further instances in a future blog Post Raisin Bran. Oops. FreudAIn slip.
Chris McGinty is a blogger who is finally getting around to posting this post because he would like to link to it from the more recent “Big” coincidence he experienced that he’s posting about today.