A missing reference error can cause you days of trouble

The anomaly was noticed outside of the surface, but the inside seemed clean

When the FBI or other police forces are about to perform a raid or serve a warrant or whatever, they’ll group up outside the house of the target and do a cool power move where they flip down or velcro on a little flap on their jacket which previously appeared as normal jacket but now says “FBI” or “POLICE” or “FEDERAL AGENT” or whatever on it in prominent letters.

I think this is done because if you put all your FBI guys in jackets that say FBI on them, they can just look around and see the other FBI guys by looking at their jackets. If you see a guy in a not FBI jacket, they are more likely to be a random bystander, or maybe part of your target. It might also help if you have a fancy dress shirt on to be able to throw a cheap windbreaker over it and avoid getting ketchup stains on your dress shirt.

I feel like if I were a criminal in a place trying to avoid being raided, I’d either a) acquire a bunch of flip-down FBI raid jackets of my own and wear them inside my crime den; or b) post someone to keep an eye out for guys who have suspiciously flip-down-able windbreakers on mulling around outside our crime den.

I’d like to see more collections of guys standing around adopt a policy like this. Like if you’ve got a street crew that’s about to pave a road or maintain a sewer line or something … maybe you could have them all pool up just outside the perimeter of the side, and then wait for some main leader person to be like “go go go! breach!” or whatever, and then you all flip down your “ROAD WORK” floppies over your windbreakers and just go in and attack that work site.

Or like, if you run a cafè maybe you have your whole staff just casually sitting around mixed in with the rest of the customers enjoying their own lattes and croissants or whatever. Then at some point a customer wanders in and they’re looking around and they’re like “what the hell is no one working here?” because they don’t see anyone behind the counter. Then your maitre’d is like “go go go! breach!” or something and all your baristas jump up from their mixed in positions and flip down things which say “BARISTA” and they go and serve that person.

We examined the patient and found no signs of triumph

The idea of a “Faustian Bargain” (or “deal with the devil”) is used to describe when a person is making some sort of moral or values compromise in order to get some wealth or knowledge that they want. This originates from a German story about Faust — which was apparently based on an actual German guy named Faust! — where the titular Faust trades his soul with the devil in order to get things he wants.

Looking at the chronology here, it looks like the actual historical figure of Faust was already dead before any of the folk legends about Faust started circulating; but of course he was accomplished and well known enough that his life could serve as fodder for these stories.

I wonder if the subsequent familial estate of future Fausts ever got really mad about this association? Like maybe their ancestor (the original, for the purposes of the tales, Faust) was actually an incredibly shrewd wheeler and dealer and made tons of really sweet bargains and trades in his life time. Like he was a pre-internet version of that guy who traded the red paperclip for the house. He was a ruthless negotiator and almost always got the better of his counterparts. But then these tales get circulated and he winds up being known for this one dumb mistake he allegedly made where he trades his soul for a bunch of stuff commonly deemed to be not worth trading your soul for, and all of a sudden it’s like everyone forgets about his previously stellar performance buying low and selling high, as it were.

I’m not sure what grounds they’d have to seek compensation for these damages. Perhaps some small portion of the collective pool of revenues derived from German folk tales could be put into some sort of reparations fund or something? There’s a ton of German folk tales so it seems like even a small piece of this action might alleviate the harm done.