Spare Us A Pillow? (12/5/99)
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You know, statistically speaking, not many shows make it into their third season intact; most producers (like your friendly neighborhood AtAT staff) lose their share of sleep worrying about the bogeyman known as "cancellation." In AtAT's case, our Nielsen numbers have grown over the years, thanks to our faithful viewers, so we never had to worry much about a ratings-based cancellation. In the world of Mac web sites, though, there's always the specter of Apple's elite anti-web squadron lurking in the shadows, waiting to strike.

Sure, we know what some of you are thinking: sleep deprivation induces paranoia, and the AtAT staff's been missing the last train to Dreamland again. But that's just what "they" want you to think. What better way to cast doubt upon our words of Truth™ than by cleverly faking sleep studies over the course of the past several decades, all in anticipation of a day when it would become necessary to discredit a handful of REM-challenged soap opera writers trying to expose their secret plans for world domination? See? It all just falls into place. Just because we're tired doesn't mean they aren't all out to get us; the fact that we haven't been sleeping much lately has no bearing on the fact that Apple's ninja hit squad is once again in full force.

Yes, it's the return of the ninja hit squad-- that lovable AtAT mainstay who first appeared when AtAT was but three weeks into its first season. Tracking the movements of the hit squad over the past couple of years shows a frightening and efficient crippling and/or extermination of a number of Mac-related web sites: MacInsider and ThessaSOURCE both died in what some would consider "suspicious" circumstances; Mac OS Rumors and Apple Insider (then called Reality) both eventually emerged tattered but alive after mysterious "server outages" and "hiatuses." And when AtAT's own server has done "interesting" things in the past, eyewitnesses report glimpses of lithe, black-clad figures silently vanishing into the shadows.

And now evidently Master Steve has turned up the heat... The hit squad must have been working hard throughout the night, because now MacCentral and MacObserver are nowhere to be found. Oh, curse the foul forces who would ruthlessly eliminate two beloved sites in one deadly night! Rise up, faithful viewers-- rise up and join us in avenging the deaths of our friends! The gutters of Cupertino will overflow with blood and... Oh, wait a minute. According to MacInTouch, Pair Networks is relocating today, so sites hosted by them (like, say, MacCentral and MacObserver) will be offline until sometime Monday afternoon. Never mind. Forget all that "blood in the gutters" stuff. Perhaps we'll just curl up over here and take a little nap...


 
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The above scene was taken from the 12/5/99 episode:

December 5, 1999: CompUSA dials Dr. Kevorkian's offices-- what will happen to Apple's retail presence? Meanwhile, Future Power USA suddenly gets honest about their E-Power product, and Apple's ninja hit squad appears to be hard at work taking out Mac web sites again...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 1951: It's Contagious (12/5/99)   Is it finally safe to say that no one, not even the most unrepentant and pig-headed Apple-bashing Wintel pundit, would still consider Apple "beleaguered"? There's a master showman at the helm, an all-star line-up of chart-topping products, analyst upgrades galore, a stock price constantly hitting new all-time highs (AAPL closed at 115 last Friday!), and more-- so we'd like to think that no one's stubborn enough to say Apple's still beleaguered...

  • 1952: Hit With The Honest Stick (12/5/99)   Ooooh, sometimes the universe doles out a heaping helping of poetic justice and it's sweeter than cherry Dum Dums. Of course, usually the universe gets a little helping hand from mere mortals, but it still puts a smile on our collective face...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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