Friday Fun Facts: watch (Unix)

Did ya know…?

watch is a command-line tool, part of the Linux procps and procps-ng packages, that, when provided with a name, date and place of birth, will display a video feed back to standard output so you can watch the person over time. By default, the video feed is run every two seconds, although this is adjustable with the -n secs argument should you want continuous live feed. Since the command is passed to sh -c, you may need to encase it in quotes for it to run correctly.


watch “Jean K. Jean 7/2/1981 Paris,France | grep 1991”

This will stream the video feed of Jean K. Jean’s life and filter for video for the year 1991, and display that video on the screen.

The watch command is useful for viewing you or someone you know changing over time.

watch addiction has become a growing problem among the elderly in most developed countries.


-d – Highlights differences between specific years
-h – Displays a help message, then exits
-n secs – Specifies the interval between executions of the command in seconds – can be set to n 0 to show continuous live feed
-t – Tells watch to search for video with tags like “birthday” “kiss” “laid off”
-v – Prints verbose video, i.e., user comments. rarely used due to bandwidth constraints

…So now ya know!

Friday Fun Facts: watch (Unix)

10 Lyrics that are better than “Cause I’m the wizard of love \ And I got the magic wand”

from OMI’s “Cheerleader”

1) “Cause I’m the dragon of desire \ Watch out, my tool’s a’fire”
2) “Cause I’m the magician of making love \ Come and scry upon my nub”
3) “Cause I’m the sorcerer of sex \ My flying waterbed will get you wet”
4) “Cause I’m the warlock of whoopee \ And you can call me Shirley”
5) “Cause I like to do it \ And I have a penis”
6) “Cause I have a penis \ And I like to do it”

OK, I give up on writing 10 of these things. 6 will do and here is a bonus round that I am making up on the spot for you that deals with lazy euphemisms. I call it, “This Lack of Male Heterosexual Innuendo Might Be the Birth of You”:

I am free of innuendo
So will now talk of penises
     as they enter vaginas
     and thrust several times
     before releasing semen
     and falling flaccid shortly thereafter.

Being free of innuendo let’s
     me do this, let’s me say
     just the facts, nothing less
     nothing more.

I like good innuendo, funny euphemisms. If somebody told me they were the wizard of love and that they got a magic wand for me – I would tell them they just rolled a 1 on a d20: critical miss, shit is over, time to practice your solo magick!

10 Lyrics that are better than “Cause I’m the wizard of love \ And I got the magic wand”

The Ice Cream Man is Coming

I watched your head roll off your body and down the dark stairwell and through the open door, down the front stoop, through the garden, past the gate, and into the middle of the street where it was promptly squashed by an ice cream truck speeding through our neighborhood.

I watched you chase after your head, stumbling and fumbling.

I watched, from our window, as you held your head’s pulpy remains in your lap, chest heaving up and down, unable to cry, unable to wail, but still able to shake an angry fist toward the fading echos of mulberry bushes.

The Ice Cream Man is Coming