If I wasn't so tired — 3 AM was darned early this morning! — I'd probably opine about the unfortunate death of Steve "Crocodile Hunter" Irwin. In truth, I never watched any of his shows...his voice was like fingernails on a chalkboard to me. He seemed like a nice enough guy, but hey, in my continuing vein of honesty, if you play out there on the edges of the Known Universe, sooner or later you screw with something that screws you back. That is the Unmutable Law of Nature, which takes no prisoners and doesn't actually care whether you're a nice guy or Hannibal Lector.
If I may toss a couple of cents in from experience, each time you go out there to the edges of the K-U, you believe absolutely — at least, I believed absolutely — that it was a fresh throw of the dice, that the odds reset themselves to evensies for each new extreme experience. Except that they didn't, not really...with each new throw of the dice the odds shifted a little more to the House...you cut the edges a little closers, accepted margins a little finer, were just the tiniest bit slower to respond...but that was okay, because every toss of the dice was a new game, right? Odds are odds.
If you're lucky, you wake up in the middle of the night, sit right up in bed and reel from the notion that you are alive not because you are good at what you do, or faster than the average bear, or willing to train harder, or any of the myriad number of things that are under your control — although all those things may be true. Instead you realize that you are alive because the dice rolled your way a couple of times, but the game itself is rigged. You are going to lose.
Then again, I'm really tired, which makes it unlikely that I'll finish my ROBOTICS DEMYSTIFIED book tonight. Go read Austin Bay's far superior commentary on Mr. Irwin and ponder Leonard Cohen's profound words for the evening:
Everybody knows that the dice are loaded
Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed...