This is more artifice than obfuscation.
The "& _ x ord $ ;" code is used to convert my lowercase PerlMonks ID jmcnamara to my uppercase CPAN directory JMCNAMARA. I could have used uc but I thought that I should put in a little effort. ;-)
# The following are equivalent
perl -MCPAN -e 'install jmcnamara & _ x ord $ ;'
perl -MCPAN -e 'install "jmcnamara" & ( "_" x ord($;) )'
perl -MCPAN -e 'install "jmcnamara" & ( "_" x 28 )'
# With bitwise string "&" the longer string is truncated
# to the length of the shorter string. Therefore:
perl -MCPAN -e 'install "jmcnamara" & ( "_" x 9 )'
perl -MCPAN -e 'install "jmcnamara" & "_________"'
perl -MCPAN -e 'install JMCNAMARA'
Running this will cause CPAN to generate an error because you are trying to install a directory instead of module (or bundle). This helpfully translates my PerlMonks name into my real name. Here is the output as seen through tail -l.
Don't be silly, you can't install John McNamara ;-)
This error message is buried in CPAN.pm.
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