To read about F's and my London trip, start here and click "newer post" to continue the story.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

This is very strange to me.

Virginia killer's sanity questioned as execution looms

I don't mean to be disrespectful of a fellow human, really. But I am reminded of a funny story that a Hewlett Packard service rep told me, back before HP sold off its lab equipment business to Agilent. It seems that an HP service rep got a call from a customer who wanted a 250 foot power cord for his instrument and couldn't find a part number in the catalog. The rep called the parts department to get a part number. The parts dept. said they didn't stock a 250-ft power cord but they could get him the stuff to put one together. As an afterthought, they asked why the customer wanted a 250-ft power cord anyway. I don't know, the rep said, I'll ask him. The rep called the customer back and explained that he would have to put one together for him. OK, the customer said. Then the rep asked why he wanted a 250-ft power cord anyway. "Because I'm on the 5th floor of this university building," the customer said, "and I'm about to push this s. o. b. out the window; and I want it to still be running when it hits the ground!"

This, you understand, by way of putting in a service call.

Maybe you have to have to really struggled and fought and gone through the valley of the shadow of death with an instrument to appreciate the humor of that story, but trust me, it's really funny.

But the idea of the impossibility of executing an insane person is kind of weird. I am down with not executing an insane person, really, but to insist on sanity before execution is like wanting that mass spec to hit the ground "conscious". Don't you think?

1 comment:

marsha said...

I never understood not wanting to execute an insane person either. If they are insane and bad what is the purpose of keeping them around??