Back in the days when offices had water coolers, one of the oldest water cooler jokes was this:
I looked up 'idiot' in the dictionary, and there was a picture of Fred.
(Where 'Fred', was the name of one of the office wags who happened to be standing around the water cooler.)
Get it? The little pictures they put next to definitions in the dictionary are chosen to be so iconic that if they used Fred's picture next to 'idiot', then....
Well okay, no one ever said water cooler jokes were very funny. Maybe that's why hardly any offices have water coolers anymore. And come to think of it, how many of us have an unabridged Funk & Wagnalls on our desk anymore? Or even an abridged Funk & Wagnalls?
Mr. Google has pretty much done away with the popularity of printed dictionaries. But Mr. Google has continued the tradition of posting iconic little pictures for practically anything you might want to google.
Sure, if you search Google images, there will be a gazillion photos for almost any search, but only the three or four most iconic of those show up when you're searching the whole web for something.
If you search for 'anchor', for example, Mr. Google will show you these iconic images of anchors:
Note that almost none of those looks like the kind of anchor a real sailor would be likely to have on their boat today. But they are the most perfect representations that Mr. Google could find of what the word 'anchor' means to most people. I think that's what iconic means, anyway. And Mr. Google is tireless in his search for the most perfect, the most iconic images.
So, why do I bring this up?
I thought you'd never ask.
While trundling (look that up in your Funk & Wagnalls) through Sitemeter the other day to see if anyone is still reading this blog, I made a remarkable discovery. Someone had found this blog by searching merely for Flemish coil.
So, what the hey, I thought, I'll try doing that same Google search to see if I'm on the 27th or 28th page of hits for Flemish coil. In the course of western civilization, after all, there have been other references to Flemish coils besides the ones in this blog and other photos besides my Blogger profile photo:
And, what the hey, indeed!
I was shocked - shocked, I say - to see the results!
According to Mr. Google (who is never wrong), that very profile photo - photographed on location right here on O Dock - is the second most iconic photo of a Flemish coil in the entire universe:
Do you understand the significance of that?
Since Oprah is no longer on the air, recognition by Mr. Google is the most authoritative acknowledgement that one can have of one's standing in the world!
The once ridiculed Flemish coils of O Dock - and, in particular, my Flemish coil - have finally assumed their rightful place in the entire galaxy of Flemish coils. When it comes to Flemish coils, the coils of O Dock now speak for all the world!
If you still haven't grasped the importance of this, consider that I've just used four exclamation marks in the past six paragraphs. And how often does that happen?
I'm still reeling from all of this. I'm struggling to maintain balance. I'm desperately seeking that inner peace that has guided me through so many of life's overwhelming moments.
How will I cope with this sudden international recognition? Will it affect the tenor of this blog? Will I remain the down-to-earth, humble person that I have always been? Will I continue to ask tedious rhetorical questions like this?
How could I have guessed that a casual reference I made to Flemish coils in the comments page of a now silent sailing blog - lo, so many years ago - would one day lead to such fame?
At long last, I now know there is a God.
And that He uses The Google.