Unix command used to intensely annoy someone at the other end. It should be outlawed.
You're innocently hacking away, and what do you see?

Message from Talk_Daemon@straylight.eu.org at 20:16 ...
talk: connection requested by marksie@straylight.eu.org.
talk: respond with:  talk marksie@straylight.eu.org
Then it happens again...
Message from Talk_Daemon@straylight.eu.org at 20:16 ...
talk: connection requested by marksie@straylight.eu.org.
talk: respond with:  talk marksie@straylight.eu.org

So that's it! Everything is now ruined! And why did they choose to bother you in the first place? Probably because of some 37337 thing they just did, or because they happen to be drunk, or anything!

Put 'mesg n' in your .bash_profile to stop this sort of thing ever happening to you! (or .bash_profile equivalent if you aren't a bash user)

Don't these people know what IRC is for?


The September after my mother left, I started second grade. Someone had told my teacher, Mr. Mendosa, about my mother, and he asked me to stay behind at recess one day early in the school year. Though no one had said anything to me, it was widely known that my mother had left us and moved into the guest house of one of the richest families in the valley, the Falks, who had made their fortune in backhoes.

Mr. Mendosa leaned against a bank of desks. “If you need to talk about anything, you can always come to me.”

I nodded.

“Or, if you’d feel more comfortable talking to a woman,” he said more quietly, “Lori said you can talk to her anytime.”

Lori was Beth’s sign language interpreter and Mr. Mendosa’s wife. Mr. Mendosa was my first male teacher. I had been excited when his name and classroom number came in the mail the month before school. “Your teacher is: Mitch Mendosa. Your classroom is: 11.” They were young, and they had just moved to the valley. Mr. Mendosa had a handlebar mustache, and his family was from the coast. They owned the grocery store in Mendocino, and they were Portuguese, which was why his last name was spelled “s” instead of “z.” Lori was pale with permed blond hair. She wore gloves when she wasn’t signing to keep her hands warm. I’d once patted her gloved hands at recess. “Why do you wear these?”

“Because I have poor circulation.”

I hadn't asked what that meant.

I looked up at Mr. Mendosa. His smile was tight across his face.

“Oh, okay.” I wanted to say something more. “Thank you.” I searched for something I could share with him and Lori. Maybe he could call Lori in from recess and the three of us could sit down and talk. I had a fleeting thought that they would make good parents.

How are you doing?” he asked.

“Okay.” I answered absently.

We were silent. The chalkboard was white with dust. The sky outside was cold grey. Beside the door was a poster the second-graders were drawing together of an imaginary town. Brian had drawn a restaurant like the Drive-In his mother owned. Christina had drawn a horse ranch. I had drawn a motel at the very end of the main street. “The biggest street in a town usually goes through to the next town,” Mr. Mendosa had explained after I’d drawn it in.

I could hear the other kids outside, their yelling far away.

“I know this must be a really hard time for you, and I just want you to know that it isn’t your fault that your mom and dad are apart.”

I felt a wave of shock at his words. My fault?

But I was a good girl, even when I had to do boring stuff like sitting around at Aunt Jean’s house while the adults talked about farm stuff on Sunday afternoons or going to work with Dad and waiting in the pickup while he pruned apple trees.

I felt my heart shaking again in my chest, looking at the threadbare brown carpet on the floor between my teacher and me.

I ate all my food, even the weird stuff only Mom liked, like liver or cream of celery soup. I would try anything.

I suddenly felt tired and far away.

I was smart and I got good grades and I was funny and I had a good singing voice. What more could I do?

I know.”

He was still smiling at me when I raised my head. I smiled back, looking away almost instantly, red-faced. “All right, then. You’d better get out to recess.”

“Um, thanks.”

I walked slowly down the breezeway toward the playground, running my hand along the cold wall. I didn’t really feel like going out to play. If my mother didn’t want to leave me, then why did she?

from The Book of Revelation

previous chapter - next chapter

Talk (?), v. i. [imp. & p. p. Talked (?); p. pr. & vb. n. Talking.] [Cf. LG. talk talk, gabble, Prov. G. talken to speak indistinctly; or OD. tolken to interpret, MHG. tolkan to interpret, to tell, to speak indistinctly, Dan. tolke to interpret, Sw. tolka, Icel. tlka to interpret, tlkr an interpreter, Lith. tulkas an interpreter, tulkanti, tulkoti, to interpret, Russ. tolkovate to interpret, to talk about; or perhaps fr. OE. talien to speak (see Tale, v. i. & n.).]

1.

To utter words; esp., to converse familiarly; to speak, as in familiar discourse, when two or more persons interchange thoughts.

I will buy with you, sell with you, talk with you, walk with you, and so following, but I will not eat with you. Shak.

2.

To confer; to reason; to consult.

Let me talk with thee of thy judgments. Jer. xii. 1.

3.

To prate; to speak impertinently.

[Colloq.]

To talk of, to relate; to tell; to give an account of; as, authors talk of the wonderful remains of Palmyra. "The natural histories of Switzerland talk much of the fall of these rocks, and the great damage done." Addison. -- To talk to, to advise or exhort, or to reprove gently; as, I will talk to my son respecting his conduct. [Colloq.]

© Webster 1913.


Talk, v. t.

1.

To speak freely; to use for conversing or communicating; as, to talk French.

2.

To deliver in talking; to speak; to utter; to make a subject of conversation; as, to talk nonsense; to talk politics.

3.

To consume or spend in talking; -- often followed by away; as, to talk away an evening.

4.

To cause to be or become by talking.

"They would talk themselves mad."

Shak.

To talk over. (a) To talk about; to have conference respecting; to deliberate upon; to discuss; as, to talk over a matter or plan. (b) To change the mind or opinion of by talking; to convince; as, to talk over an opponent.

© Webster 1913.


Talk, n.

1.

The act of talking; especially, familiar converse; mutual discourse; that which is uttered, especially in familiar conversation, or the mutual converse of two or more.

In various talk the instructive hours they passed. Pope.

Their talk, when it was not made up of nautical phrases, was too commonly made up of oaths and curses. Macaulay.

2.

Report; rumor; as, to hear talk of war.

I hear a talk up and down of raising our money. Locke.

3.

Subject of discourse; as, his achievment is the talk of the town.

Syn. -- Conversation; colloquy; discourse; chat; dialogue; conference; communication. See Conversation.

© Webster 1913.

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