The ancient Greeks didn't have the Web, so they had plenty of time to sit around and contemplate other things, like logic and truth and tzatziki recipes. They also were decent mathematicians, and in the midst of building the Parthenon and fighting the Trojans they created the foundations for centuries of boring classes.
And they did more abstract and amusing things, too, like figure out that you can take the same shape and repeat it and put it together like a gingerbread house or a kind of soccer ball and make some very aesthetically pleasing solid shapes. There's five of them (I think there's a proof that says that this is the most possible, but that's in last semester's notes) and collectively they're called regular polyhedra.
Of course, if you were a geek and/or antiauthoritarian type during the latter quarter of the twentieth century, you also know instinctively what those really are: four-, six-, eight-, twelve-, and twenty-sided dice. (The ten-sider is its own geometric thing.) Role-playing games with varying probability situations were a mainstay of American adolescence back before we had the Web, too, along with other brain-expanding goodies like Zelda and choose-your-own-adventure books.
The Morning Shift: A Jalopnik "Choose Your Own Adventure" Book
Chapter 1 – Ray is under the weather today
Good morning young Jalop. 9 a.m., time for The Morning Shift. After brewing up a cup of coffee and powering up your computer, you head over to [jalopnik.com] to see what is going on in the automotive world. You click on the story link and? Wah-wah, nothing. Ray had a late night writing about the new Ferrari and besides, he's not here to entertain you. Write your own damn Morning Shift. With nothing to read or comment on, do you:
A. Try and come up with something funny to say about today's Nice Price or Crack Pipe, hoping for a #COTD nomination? Go to Page 12
B. Visit Opposite Lock and see what today's meme is? Go to Page 17
Page 12: Swing and a miss! No #COTD nominations. But it's even worse than that; you get no replies at all. Defeated, you go check out Hot Clicks on [CNNSI.com] and see what Jamie Edmondson isn't wearing today.
Page 17: It is still early so most of the Opposite Lock crowd is either stuck in traffic somewhere or on their way to class. Today's meme is #leapday. Do you:
A. Google search for a picture of a car jumping something, the weirder the better? Go to Page 32
B. See what Spiegel is up to? Go to Page 35
Page 32: Found a picture of that Bugatti Veyron flying into the lake in Texas. Add the phrase "WHY DID YOU TURN? LOLZ!" in big white letters at the top, upload it to SmugMug, grab the link and contribute to the conversation. Congratulations young Jaloper; you've been heartclicked by two people and got a, "I see what you did there" from a third.
Page 35: Spiegel is talking about his roommate's girlfriend's menses! Icky girl stuff alert! Back key! Your hand was still on the mouse so it's okay. Whew! That was close.
There is still an hour to go before Answer of the Day is posted and you're totally sure you nailed it with the Lancia Delta Integrale so you're still reading through last night's posts in Opposite Lock. What's this? Someone's cross-posted a topic from Jezebel. That first cup of coffee is kicking in and you have something totally funny to add to the conversation over there. Do you?
A. Log in at Jezebel and jump into the conversation about women being marginalized by Forza 4? Go to Page 37
B. Stay in Opposite Lock and post #NSFW pictures of Katy Perry? Go to Page 40
Page 37: No! You've poked the bear with a short stick. You are about to suffer the wrath of the man-hating feeding frenzy over there, you knuckle dragging Jalopnik Neanderthal. How dare you. Oh no! It's the Gawker monitors! You're banned. Too bad, you had so much promise. Come play again next week.
Page 40: Well played, young Jalop. You've added six followers and you're one step closer to getting your star. But remember, with great power comes great responsibility. Can you handle the power?
Chapter 2 – Power and the Young Jalop: A Very Special After School Special