El Segundo, Calif., Feb. 18Perhaps you’ve noticed our popular Me & My Bike section (see page 42), and wondered how we find the subjects of this engagingly delightful and life-affirming people-oriented glimpse into the world of motorcycling. And maybe you haven’t—but we’re going to tell you anyway.
After saddling junior staffers with the chore of sifting through mailbags stuffed with applications scrawled in crayon on Hello Kitty stationary accompanied by bribes of spiced meats, we’ve set in place a new procedure. After its decisive victory a couple of months ago on TV’s Jeopardy! against two brainiacs who know a lot of stuff, IBM’s "Watson" über-computer was offered on Craigslist. We snapped it up. It’s now parked in the Motorcyclist shop, next to 12 old dusty cases of flat-fix that passed their sell-by date in 1986.
Watson can figure out the meaning of life, reconcile Bernie Madoff’s books and crack the da Vinci code, all before lunch, but a churn through a recent load of Me & My Bike applications left the room-filling leviathan grinding away mightily, metaphorically high-centered on a Kobayashi Maru situation: a no-win choice.
It came down to two applicants that presented a microchip-bending decision: Alligator Man or Chunky Dub Sportbike? To avoid an overload, Watson decided to turn the choice over to the mob—a reader vote—and has shifted his (her? its?) considerable efforts into seizing control of all the automatic urinal flushers in the building. Looks like it’s going to be a wet winter... MC