Final Thoughts of the Night, 2018
Each night, shortly before going to sleep, I tell my wife a Final Thought.
These may be funny, they are sometimes dumb, they may be vaguely story-like,
they may be pseudo-philosophical and intelligent-sounding, they may be almost
mythic from a spur-of-the-moment mythos. The topics have spanned a wide range
of subjects: animals, steampunk, food, technology. Anything that pops into
mind is fair game.
The full story is at the bottom.
190101One of the lovely things about Facetime calls is that you can boop people gently on the nose in order to hang up the call.
181231Grammarians don't say "gesundheit" when you sneeze; they say "gerund heit".Word Week 4
180102Whale, hwale; what, hwat; whiskers, hwiskers. My fourth-grade teacher was insistent that we put an 'h' sound at the beginning of "wh" words. This just sounded weird, and I never bothered to pronounce "wh" words in the weird way she wanted us to. After 40 years, I think I've heard almost no one pronounce those words in the prescribed way. I think my teacher was trying to prepare us for a scholarly life, wherein (hwerein?) we'd be reading and conversing in Old English.Word Week 4
181229The literary term "denouement" should really be "denudement", since a book's denudement lays the pieces of the plot bare for all to see and gawk at.Word Week 4
181228Carnivals are exciting places. They have all the flashing lights and exciting rides and games of skill and delicious, yet unfortunate, delicacies. Carnivals also have a dark side, and shadows run rampant. Dreams and nightmares clash and vie for primacy amidst the lights and shadows of the fairway and the back-alley runs. It is no wonder that carnival and carnivore have same root -- carnivorus, the Latin word for devouring raw, bloody flesh.Word Week 4
181227For quite some time now, I've wondered if the word is be-draggled or bed-raggled. I don't know what a draggle is, but I'm not sure I really want to be one. I also don't think I've ever been raggled in bed, but it sounds kind of dangerous.Word Week 4
181226The OED says the word turd is "Not now in polite use." This implies that at one time it was acceptable for polite use.Word Week 4
181225Disgruntled means to be dissatisfied or in ill humor. It's not commonly used, but gruntled means to be pleased, satisfied, or contented. The OED gives no authoritative source of gruntled, other than that it's a back-formation of disgruntled. Looking deeper in the OED, there is evidence that gruntled is its own word and not a back-formation. A gruntling is a piglet. If you have any gruntlings at all, then how can you be anything but satisfied and contented?Word Week 4
181224I would love to go to a Christmas Eve candlelight service that instead of candles had people hold lit lighters over their heads.
181223I really like the song "Do You Hear What I Hear?" The title shows an admirable non-anthropomorphic focus. The title is taken from what the lamb says in the second verse; it isn't from the first verse, and it isn't what one of the humans says in later verses. It's the lamb that gives the song its title.
181222Deep in the bowels of every hospital there's a special room. In this special room is a bunch of special shelves. On these special shelves is a special collection. This special collection is a bunch of people's poop, waiting to see what grows in it.
181221Australia might have drop-bears, but Germany has drop-beers. Which country are you wanting to visit?
181220Even a mediocre Queen song is still a good song.
181219I would have been a terrible apprentice, given my experience helping Dad fix cars. The three things I learned about fixing cars were how to hold a flashlight, that there are many different types of wrenches, and that I'll always choose the wrong one. Oh, and how to gap spark plugs. I can gap spark plugs for England, Canada, and the US. Now that's a useful skill to have with modern cars.
181218In the annual security training I learned that phishing attacks are often identified by spelling, grammar, and style errors. I'm not sure if that'll do much good though. Judging by legitimate email and social-media posts, most people wouldn't know incorrect (or correct) spelling, grammar, or style if it commed up n bited they own them's as.
181217I want to install walls in my house that can instantly turn into giant mirrors. You never know when dumb murderers with poor eyesight or velociraptors will break into your house and the mirrors will cause them no end of confusion.
181215Viking funerals were invented when Sven Hamrhed got drunk as his in-laws were sailing home, and he bet his friend Olaf that he'd be able to shoot an arrow as far as the boat. Olaf suggested they set the arrow on fire just for kicks and grins.
181214I don't like to play Fuck-Marry-Kill with my friends. First off, they make me choose a different person for each slot and not a single person for all three. Also, they don't like me specifying the order of the three actions, who will participate in which, or that they'll all take place simultaneously.
181213St. Lucia's Day is the most lit holiday of all. How could it not be, if a significant feature is young girls wearing life-threatening, flaming crowns on their head?
181212Hershey's chocolate bars have two uses. They can be slathered with peanut butter, and they can be used in s'mores. Anything else doesn't make sense because there are so many better candy bars available. If you have to eat one though, there's only one way to do so -- you must respect Euclidean geometry and eat them one rectangle at a time. Not partial rectangles, not a rectangle-and-a-little-more; one rectangle. Anything else is demonstrating a dangerous disregard for the laws of nature and is inviting Cthulhu, the Great Old Ones, and the Outer Gods to return and consume our world and all its inhabitants.Food Week 11
181211The best mac-and-cheese leaves out the mac.Food Week 11
181210I want an MRI food scanner thingy so I can scan cookies and donuts and things to find the highest concentration of chocolate chips, fruit fillings, and other treasures hidden inside. It's hard to plan my eating when I can't fully evaluate the food.Food Week 11
181209Food smells are the ghosts of food.Food Week 11
181208When we make bread, we make this nice environment for yeast, and then we heat it to death. I wonder if there's any natural selection going on with bread yeast. Maybe in a few decades or a couple hundred years, a mutated form of bread yeast is going to start fighting back. Not only will we have to cut a slice of bread, but we'll also have to beat it to death so we can eat it safely.Food Week 11
181207Q: What is a cannibal's favorite sandwich?
A: An open-face Reuben.Food Week 11
181206Either the Army or the Navy football team should get uniforms with a giant American flag across the chest and back, and more flags on the helmets. That'll give pause to the other team during the big annual Army-Navy game. If the opponent does much bashing of the flag-encrusted uniforms, then they could be accused of being un-American and unpatriotic. The flag wearers might still lose the game, but they'd win a moral victory. A cheap, pathetic moral victory, but a win's a win, right?
181205It's a bit strange that barstools became a popular furnishing for the home. They aren't stable, they're rarely attractive, and they aren't comfortable. They serve a good purpose in bars, but they aren't very fitting in the home. A few other misplaced furnishings that were considered were recliner chairs on motorcycles, ski lifts for home stairways, saddles in dentist offices, and lifeguard chairs for children' high chairs. Thankfully, these ideas were all rejected before too many people were hurt.
181204Everything has its complement. For every good, there is an ill; for every ill, there is a good. Poisons have their antidote. Diseases have their vaccines. Acids have their bases. This Law of Reflective Complements holds true with monsters. Vampires are complemented by sunlight. Bogeymen are complemented by blankies. Zombies are complemented by chainsaws. Werewolves... Now, werewolves raise interesting questions. Werewolves and silver are complements, but silver has not always been available. Did silver mining create the need for werewolves? Did werewolves create the need for silver mining? Did silver itself create the first werewolf, or did the first werewolf create the first lump of silver?
181203Secrets of the Universe #759: Many teabags have a string and a little tab on the end. People correctly assume that this is intended as a means of removing the teabag after the tea has steeped, rather than having to reach into scalding water with bare fingers. That's not the only purpose though. Many people incorrectly assume that the little tab is also intended as an advert and to give heft to the string. It's really intended as an anchor. You put the tab under the mug in order to keep the whole string/tab assembly from slithering down into the scalding tea and requiring painful manual extraction.
181202It isn't done so often these days, but people used to lick the pencil point just before starting to write. This was an old practice that stemmed from hedge-magic. This quietly invoked the Law of Contagion and improved the writing by connecting the pencil with the writer's tongue. The more eloquent the speaker, the more eloquent the subsequent writing.
181201"The caret is stronger than the stick" is another way way of saying "The pen is mightier than the sword."
181130I have no interest in seeing Shades of Grey, but I would like to see its gag reel.
181129I have a Schrödinger's Clock. I set it to wake me up in the morning, but I won't know if I've set it correctly until I actually wake up. Until then, it is in a state of being both properly set and improperly set.
181128When we sleep, Other Things inhabit our brains. They only have a weak control of us, so they rarely do more than make us move or thrash around a bit, and maybe grunt a little. Sleepwalking and sleeptalking occur when the Other Things have a stronger control of our minds, and can engage us in more movement and speech. What we think of as dreams are really the remnants of memories that are left behind by the Other Things after we resume control of our brains. We get part-time use of our brains and something else gets part-time use. In other words, our brains and bodies are time-shares, and the other tenants never clean up after themselves.
181127For raccoons, every meal is a Thanksgiving feast.
181126The name is unfortunately deceptive and Cyber Monday is not the day to buy a giant flying robot.
181125Nature Fact #8: It's a little known fact that Woolly Bear caterpillars are the larval form of Red Pandas.
181124I don't have a super-objective, I have a super-motive.
181123A solipsist is one who believes that reality is defined by what they think they themselves experience. A fridgipsist is one who believes the only food in a refrigerator is the food that can be seen right at the front of the shelves. It is therefore possible for a fridgipsist to have the fridge contents change just by opening and closing the fridge door.
181122I want to start a brewery and base it in Baltimore. It would be called Neverbeer and its advertising mascot would be one of the corvids. The slogan would be, "Quaffed the Raven, Neverbeer."
181120If you ever find yourself in trouble there's a sure-fire way of fixing things so that everyone thinks the problem no longer exists, you're doing what you're supposed to be doing, and then they let the problem situation go away and consequences disappear. This works for legal situations, relationship problems, workplace issues, pretty much any type of problem at all. Just as things are looking their worst, as the police are closing in, your girlfriend gets that look on her face, your boss appears with two H.R. people and a lawyer, or the SEAL team kicks down your door, you look straight at them, you hold up your hands, and in a loud voice you say, "Aaaaannnnnnnnd SCENE!"
181119Walking down the paper-products aisle in the grocery store, I saw a big package of TP that had a majestic, serene, mute swan on the packaging. Those swans are way too easy to set off into angry, violent, malevolent hellions. If that devil-swan is representative of that TP, there's no way I'm letting it anywhere near my butt.
181118Following the reasoning in Fermi's paradox we should have already been visited by extraterrestrials. Fermi said that there's no convincing evidence of such visits, which led him to ask, "Where is everybody?" Apologists for why aliens haven't come here are that intelligent life is actually extremely rare or they propose reasons that aliens haven't visited Earth. It seems that these short-sighted apologists are ignoring Occam's Razor. We ourselves are the clear evidence that aliens have visited Earth. They came, they seeded the planet with life that became us, and then the aliens went away. Now, they're kicked back, eating popcorn, and watching the show we're putting on for them.
181117The news recently reported that Ruth Bader Ginsburg broke three ribs in a fall. That wasn't really the truth, and was a cover story to protect her secret identity. The truth is that Ginsburg broke three ribs while slaying vampires.
181116Networking protocols are a lot like the Freemasons or the Illuminati. There are strict rules for becoming an accepted protocol, just like there are introductions and initiations required for joining a secret society. Once a protocol receives official sanction, there are strict requirements for how the protocol may be used. Elaborate handshakes and secrets start off communications using the protocol, just as secret societies have used for centuries. Protocols and secret societies go to great lengths to protect their discussions. For all us limited humans know, network protocols might be conspiring behind our backs and plotting to take over the world.
181115You should never tell a joke to the guy that brings supplies to the camp in the Grand Canyon, because you really don't want him to laugh his ass off, it might fall over a cliff.
181114Marathon runners say, "Don't trust any fart after mile 15." At my age, I think I would modify that to be, "Don't trust any fart after age 50."
181113The large bag of tortillas I got has a label in big letters "SIN GLUTEN". That label really took me aback. Healthy or not, is gluten really a moral issue. That label seems awfully judgmental to me, maybe stepping over the line. If I didn't know better, I'd think it was in another language or something.
181112Like Janus, 6am has two faces. The face you're familiar with indicates the type of life you lead.
181111I heard a recording of a brief time right before the WW1 Armistice took effect and a brief time right after. In the silence after the guns stopped, shortly before the end of the recording, you can hear birds start singing. The birds bring a hopeful, fresh sound after all the violence. I suspect you could translate the birdsong as them saying, "Are you assholes finally done ruining things?"
181111The War to End All Wars certainly didn't. I have faith that in time we will come to our senses and evolve past the desire for war.
181109A ball peen hammer sounds like either an elaborately sculpted hand tool or an instrument of torture.
181108Your surgeon called your recent procedure a colon resection, but my buzzword-addled brain can't help but think of it as a colon refactoring.
181107If I die between DST start and DST end, I'll feel like I've been cheated an hour of my life. If I die between DST end and DST start, I'll feel like time is in balance.
181106Way back in the dark ages of computing, monitors had these horkin' big ol' magnets inside. Every so often, you'd need to poke the De-Gauss Button and get the screen looking right again. De-Gaussing the screen was an eminently satisfying action. There'd be this sudden deep humming sound, the display would go all wiggly and squirrelly, colors would dance around the edges of the display, and then all was right with the world. For a while. The modern screens are better in many ways, but the advancement of technology has incurred the loss of the De-Gauss Button and is a loss I quietly regret.
181105Rule 28 deals with Jacobsthal numbers, Rule 60 deals with triangles, Rule 222 deals with Mersenne numbers. These and a bunch of other numbered rules all deal with elementary cellular automata. For the life of me, I can't see how Rule 34 fits in with all the other Rules.
181104In cryptography, a shared secret is a piece of data used to secure a communications channel, and it's only known to the software directly involved in the communications. The shared secret can be a password, a set of random bits, or a large number. Whenever I read about encryption based on a shared secret, I imagine each of the programs whispering one of their own secrets to the other. "I wet the bits until I was 12." "I'm in love with my wife's binary sibling." "Okay, now let's get down to business."
181103Haruspicy was a method in ancient Rome for divination by examining animal entrails. Haruspicy is also the way the examiners liked to cook the entrails after the divination was done.
181102Google is the embodiment of a generalized, non-porn version of Rule 34.
181101If I ever publish a book, I'm going to include this disclaimer: "Views are my own, but since I'm always right they should be everyone's."
181031Halloween was designed by the monsters. It gets their favorite delicacy -- children -- running around in the dark, wearing anonymizing costumes, with little adult supervision. It's like a smorgasbord for monsters. And there's even candy!
181030A passage tomb is a megalithic monument that has a burial chamber inside an artificial mound or cairn and that's entered by a passage. This was the ancient people's version of a turducken.
180929Real estate agents say the three most important things in selling a house are "location, location, location." Separating them off like that, it's clear that each one is representing an axis in three-dimensional space. The agents should be a bit more specific as to which "location" is which axis, or they could be looking for a great house in a wildly wrong place.
181028It'd be much easier to put up with Trump's bullshit if he would just wear a Santa's-elf costume when speaking. Therein lies the danger.
181026Coroners figure out the cause of death; detectives figure out the because of death.
181025When the universe was first created, everything was quiet and stable and didn't move around. Then God bought the "Big Bang" expansion pack.
181024"As the crow flies, it's six miles." "It's 20 miles as the crow flies." People use that phrase to indicate a direct line between two points. However, crow flight is a very poor indicator for straight lines. Crows soar and swoop and bank and glide and investigate and get distracted. A crow could fly a mile in order to travel 200 feet. "As the crow flies" should be used to indicate trip quality (neat sights to see, cool things to do, fun roads to drive) rather than trip distance.
181023If a pharmacopoeia is a collection of medicines and drugs, then a cornucopia must be a collection of dumb jokes.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181022Q: Why did Darth Chicken cross the road?
A: To get to the Dark Side.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181021I grew up a Southern Nudist Baptist. We learned about the Bible in Sunday School, where we always did strip sword drills.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181020Genghis was a hypochondriac, which was why he never tried to conquer Ireland. He heard Ireland was full of leper khans.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181019Q: What is the most respected vegetable in England?
A: Corn, because it's taken the silk.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181018When Red Lectroids get horny, they go on Bigbootè calls.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181017Ground squirrels live shocking lives.Grand-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
181016Chinese dragons are strongly associated with water and weather, many spending their lives in oceans and rivers. In recent years, there have been fewer and fewer dragons in the waters of the world, all thanks to the commercial seafood industry. This is a side effect of the industry, rather than that the fleets have specifically gone hunting for dragons. You see, shrimp are the tadpole phase of dragon development.
181015Self-agency -- allowing one to control decisions about oneself. Indulgence -- allowing one to return to a feeling of comfort and bliss. Delay for gratification -- allowing one to put off the inevitable by indulging in the sensuous. Introspection -- a pause out of time to think and consider. The Snooze Alarm provides all these in one little package.
181014Prime numbers are like prime rib. They both are fundamental, they both provide an underlying support structure, and they both taste great when cooked on a grill.
181013We always had lots and lots of fun when we played Scrabble. Normal rules, alternate rules, we had so many fun games. That all stopped when a handful of tiles went missing. As they say, it's all fun and games until someone lose nine I's.
181012There's a right time and a wrong time to adjust your underwear. Standing on stage and talking about your next set should never be considered the right time.
181011Shoes are like cellphone cases for your feet. They have to be snug and tight to provide any real protection. They provide protection from surface-level damage, as well as some amount of deeper damage. They can be plain and purely functional, and they can also be highly decorated and dripping with ornaments.
181010The holes on instruments in the violin family are typically called F-holes. This name came from the shape, which is a curly, scripty F shape. However, these holes are actually integral signs. The integrals represent the instrument's music, and how the instrument sounds provide a musical representation of the curve of the bow that calls the music forth from the instrument.
181009It kind of seems like meta studies are the research equivalent of cheating off someone else's homework.
181008TV remotes bring us light, dark, music, sound. They show us the world and let us change the way we look at it. With a TV remote, we can control various devices, and learn about the world. TV remotes are our sonic screwdrivers.
181007I am disappointed that Amazon lists sonic screwdrivers in the Toys & Games department, rather than the Tools & Home Improvement department.
181006Some people get immediate, automatic feedback whenever they touch or talk into a microphone. Those people have an emptiness inside that causes microphones to pick up an echoing void. A void that's a result of these people having no souls.
181005I wonder which is more efficacious -- thoughts and prayers or prayers and thoughts.
181004Whenever I work on these Final Thoughts, I always wear a special hat that ensures each thought is meaningful and concise. This special hat is my pithy helmet.
181003If I was inclined to get a tattoo, I'd be tempted to get the inscription on the One Ring tattooed on my butt cheeks in a circle around my anus.
181002Whenever I sit down to work, I get a pocketful of Oat Squares so that I can give myself one as a reward whenever I accomplish something.
181001I want to open a bar that has live music. I want this so that every year I can slap together a bunch of stereotypes and celebrate Ragnarocktoberfest.
180930I don't know if the planets actually embody any of the personality or powers of the deities they were named after, but I would not want to have to explain to Pluto, the god of the underworld, why I said he had size issues and wasn't big enough to be a planet.
180929As we were watching the new Jurassic World, I was a bit crestfallen to see that once again, they had to include a child. I get really tired of these Jurassic Park movies pandering to children that way. A little later, I realized that it is critical for these movies to have children as important parts of the cast. Dinosaurs are integral to childhood, and the Jurassic Park movies would be weak and ineffectual if they didn't have children to be threatened by the dinosaurs. Part of the success of Jurassic Park movies, both financial and in storytelling, is the inclusion of children.
180928Journalists use a sidebar when they want to have a drink without their regular bar knowing.
180927Why were the King's horses involved with trying to fix Humpty Dumpty? Horses have no thumbs, horses have no fingers, horses only have hooves, which are notoriously unbendy. What good could the horses have done in helping to fix Humpty? There are only two ways I can think of that they could help. The first is that those long horse tongues could lap up a lot of egg innards. Second, well, the King's men must have needed some glue to try to fix Humpty's shell...Literature Week 5
180926The Little Matchstick Girl is an archetype that dies on Hogswatchnight. If Death is filling in for the Hogfather, then he isn't doing his own job. If Death isn't doing his own job, how does the Little Matchstick Girl die?Literature Week 5
180925Gene Wolfe is known to be an author who makes rather obscure word choices. Stella Gibbons is easily his equal.Literature Week 5
180924If Homer really did write the Iliad, then the Greeks would have spent all their time lounging around and drinking Duff ouzo. On the other hand, there's the Odyssey, whose hero spent ten years coming home from work because he got lost. That clearly was written by a Homer.Literature Week 5
180923Sauron sold knock-offs of the One True Ring to pay for college.Literature Week 5
180922Stephen King built a literary career by deconstructing Les Miserables and using the elements for his own books. For example, the sewers of Paris were represented by the sewers in "It", and the runaway cart towards the beginning of the book is represented by the evil car in "Christine". King's books abound with such parallels, too many to list here. The most surprising element is one he copied exactly from "Les Miserables", in that Fantine is exactly like Carrie was.Literature Week 5
180921In "Fellowship of the Ring", the hobbits go to the Prancing Pony tavern in Bree to meet Gandalf. That tavern sounds like it has a special clientele, and caters exclusively to in-costume Bronies. I would dearly love to see a version of that scene where the hobbits arrive at the Prancing Pony and break out the pony costumes and rainbow makeup. I'm also very curious as to what Strider's brony persona would be.Literature Week 5
180920When the zombie apocalypse comes, all the South American zombies are going to surge north into the US to dine on those pesky US brains that were undoubtedly responsible for the completely unnecessary and avoidable outbreak of the zombiosis apocalyptica virus. That's when we're going to regret not listening to Trump about his stupid wall.
180919I had a great idea for a product -- a car poncho for eating while driving. It would be giant-sized, to cover you all up, neck to toes, and let you eat lots of messy food in the car. There would also be nice big pockets all along the bottom to catch dropped food and keep your car clean. And then I thought maybe I shouldn't be trying to facilitate highly distracted, dangerous driving, since it'd be hard to drive if everything but your head is covered by the poncho. Not to mention that it'd be hard to eat if your head and your hands were on opposite sides of the poncho.
180918I had such trouble with advanced math classes in college that my friends always knew when I was studying math because they could hear my math calcululations.
180917None of the English letters have any real connection between the name of the letter and how the letter is written. Except for the letter 'w'. The name of the letter 'w' is describing specifically what the letter looks like. I'm not sure if this makes the 'w' the most highly advanced of letters or the dumbest of letters.
180916Nutritionists say that we should eat according to the Food Pyramid. The Food Pyramid has a set of progressively widening levels as it goes from the top to the bottom. The top level has foods that are high in fat, sugar, and salt. The next level has foods that are high in fats and oils. Then is the meat level, followed by the dairy products level. At the bottom of the Food Pyramid are the levels of whole-grain foods and carbohydrates, with the lowest, widest level being vegetables, salads, and fruit. One interpretation of how to use the Food Pyramid is that the width of the level indicates the rough proportion of how the level's food should comprise the total diet. This particular interpretation would have you eating lots of brussels sprouts and kale and whole-grain muffins. A far superior interpretation of how to use the Food Pyramid is a wholistic, all-encompassing view. Pyramids have long been used to represent aspirations; the lower levels are perhaps what is required for living, but the upper levels are what you aspire to reach in order to have a better life. The aspirational interpretation of the Food Pyramid indicates that you should have some of those low-level carbs, fruits, and veggies, but striving for as much of the upper level's sugar, salt, and fats are required for a fuller, happier, whole-being health.
180915Dentists have a really nice perq with their job. In addition to getting paid by their patients, they also have all those teeth they've extracted that they give to the Tooth Fairy. The Tooth Fairy pays top dollar for these extracted teeth because she knows the dentists have cleaned and polished them, and those teeth are best quality. Those teeth are a nest egg for the dentists.
180914It takes a little over eight minutes for a photon to travel from the Sun to the Earth. However, it takes thousands of years for that same photon to move from the center of the Sun to its surface, despite the Sun's radius being a tiny fraction of an Astronomical Unit. Photons aren't lazy or nervous about leaving the Sun; there's a very good reason for this difference in time. Each photon has to fight a cage match against each and every photon standing between it and the Sun's surface. Those photons you see coming from the Sun are not just survivors, but having been in millenia of cage matches they are stone cold warriors. Except that coming from the Sun they're pretty warm and not cold at all.
180912It's common knowledge that the skin is where the vitamins and "good stuff" are in fruits and vegetables. By extension, the skin, or crust, is also where the "good stuff" is in bread. Parents and nutritionists want us to eat the skins and crusts of fruits, vegetables, and breads. It follows, therefore, that the vitamins and "good stuff" in chickens and pork are concentrated in the skin, and that's the important part to eat.Food Week 10
180911It's funny that the same people who sneer at putting tartar sauce on crabcakes are very happy to have crab imperial.Food Week 10
180910The phrase "cut the mustard" originated in the early 19th Century. At that time, mustard was a solid block, not the liquid, sauce-like substance it is today. The Mustard Man would travel from village to village, carving chunks off his mustard block to sell the villagers. Mustard recipes were closely held secrets, and competition among Mustard Men was fierce. This competition was so intense that the Mustard Wars erupted in Yorkshire, in 1853. The Mustard Wars lasted 11 years and eventually spread throughout England and the Channel Islands. Anyway, the Mustard Men would sell mustard slices to villagers. If the mustard was ripe, then it would slice effortlessly and would be easy to handle. If the mustard wasn't ripe, or was well past being ripe, then it would be difficult to slice. An inept Mustard Man wouldn't be able to manage his mustard, regardless of how ripe it was. An inept Mustard Man wouldn't be able to slice his mustard blocks, or as it became known, he couldn't cut the mustard.Food Week 10
180909September 9, 1947, was the date the first computer bug was found -- a moth stuck in a relay in the Mark II at Dahlgren. Even though it was a moth taped into the logbook, I'm pretty sure it wasn't a moth. As much trouble and chaos that bugs introduce into computers, I'm pretty sure it was actually a butterfly. In particular, the Lorenz Butterfly, which was the source of the Butterfly Effect.Historical Interlude
180908Breakfast in Scotland has a number of challenges for the American palate. Baked beans? An interesting choice for the morning. Fried mushrooms and haggis? Those will get your taste buds up and on their feet. Black pudding? Despite the ingredients, it really is an excellent way to start the day. There's one thing, though, that I just can't abide. Not only does it disgust me, but it baffles me that anyone would consider it a reasonable thing to serve at any time of day. This breakfast abomination is cold toast.Food Week 10
180907Whenever I have an Otis Spunkmeyer cookie, I can't help but fear that I'll wake up the next morning and find I've died because the cookie implanted an alien chestburster in me.Food Week 10
180906Brunch is not restricted to a time somewhere around noon. Brunch can happen any time of day. Brunch is a state of mind.Food Week 10
180905They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and that you should eat well and you should never skip it. That's why I call any meal I eat breakfast.Food Week 10
180904It's funny the things we let into our heads. For instance, when I was a kid, I had an inordinate fear that I would get sick and have to live in an iron lung.
180903Telling someone to act like an adult -- act like an adult -- is an implicit acknowledgment that we are all really children at heart and that none of us really know what we're doing.
180902I want to open a restaurant. It'll serve very specific cuts of meat, and it'll be elegant and stylish. Not only will the wait staff and kitchen staff dress fashionably, but the food will look very sophisticated and the meat will be dressed in edible tuxedos. I will call my restaurant Chic Fillet.
180901The era of mechanized warfare began when Germany invaded Poland to start World War II. Poland fielded horse cavalry against the invading German mechanized armor. The horses, not being stupid, very quickly did the simple comparison of delicate horsey skin to extremely tough tank steel and decided that their best course of action was to go pretend to be plow horses. Equine intelligence and common sense is why Poland so quickly succumbed in WWII.
180831The name Bambi originated in the early 20th Century in the book "Bambi -- King of the Forest". The titular character is the son of the Stag King, and he grows to become the Stag King himself. Oddly enough, the name is more widely used for women and 19.3% of female strippers in the US are named Bambi.
180830I've been having allergy problems recently. I'm allergic to dust mites and their relatives: dust maybes, dust won'ts, and dust dunnos.
180829Grills are like boats. They bring lots of pleasure to lots of people, one with cooked meat and the other with trips out onto the water. They both require a lot of maintenance or they break down. In both cases, lots of people are willing to help the owner enjoy the thing, but those same people are scarce when the maintenance comes due. (As an aside, it's often more cost effective to have a friend with a grill or a boat than to have one yourself.) Nirvana can be reached when you put a grill on your boat.
180828Chocolate milk must be prepared and drunk from an actual glass. Putting it in plastic or some other non-glass container just isn't right. Sure, the chocolate and the milk are the most critical parts, but they aren't all. The clink of spoon against glass, the cool temperature of glass, the smoothness of glass, those are all important aspects to the experience of drinking chocolate milk. Without them, you're having a pleasant beverage. With them, ah, with them you're having Chocolate Milk.
180827It seems that the meaning of the "Like" button has mutated from "I like this" to be "I want you to know that I've read this."
180826Humans, mice, and rats are the only animals that live on all continents. Ravens and goat live on all the continents except Antarctica. They certainly could live there if they wanted, but they have enough sense not to.Zoo Week
180825Warthogs have long been upset by their name. They feel it's extremely unfair that their very name maligns them as a result of one unavoidable physical feature. Surely their lives would be different, warthogs feel, if just one small part of their name was different, thus allowing them the benefit of a more regal, refined nomenclature. A name that will instill respect and a positive feeling from the outset. Henceforth, they should be known as wartbacons.Zoo Week
180824For many years, there has been a debate as to whether zebras are black with white stripes or white with black stripes. The truth is something completely different. The black and white stripes are the result of a massive prank played by all the lions on all the zebras every year, involving barrels of suntan lotion and many rolls of duct tape. Each. And. Every. Year.Zoo Week
180823Long and long ago, tribal leaders in Africa maintained kudu herds. Kudu poo made an excellent fertilizer in the leaders' farm fields. Kudus are rather prolific in providing fertilizer, so the leaders had more fertilizer than they needed. To increase the fortunes of the tribe as a whole, the leaders would loan their herds to tribe members who had done good things for the tribe. Whenever someone was found to be a real "tribe player", the leaders would send kudus to them.Zoo Week
180822Ostriches only have two toes because of their kind, generous hearts. Long and long ago, all birds had a minimum of three toes and ostriches had three toes. All birds except for finches, who only had one toe. All the finches would take turns with that one toe, and life was very hard for them. Ostriches saw this and thought hard about how they could help the finches. Since ostrich toes are enormous, they decided to each give up one toe from each foot and give them to the finches. Each finch took a few pecks at the spare ostrich toes and that got the finches all the toes they needed. The ostriches have managed just fine without those missing toes and the finches have been grateful ever since.Zoo Week
180821Ostriches are champions at the forward limbo.Zoo Week
180820Is it really a zoo if it doesn't have elephants?Zoo Week
180819The problem with rising above the corn around you is that if you grow too tall someone's likely to come along and cut your ears off.
180818I feel that there's got to be a lost book between The Hobbit and Fellowship of the Ring. This lost book must deal with the economic and social effects that resulted from the vast amount of gold and treasure from Erebor that was suddenly flooding the markets and shops and pockets of Middle Earth. I have a feeling that the War of the Ring was a direct result of this. Just as World War II was a result of the economic devastation in Germany from World War I, the economically destitute Mordar was similarly affected by the War of Five Armies and Erebor's suddenly far-flung gold. Mordar struck out against the rest of Middle Earth because Mordormans were struggling so hard to survive. If only Erebor hadn't had such a negative bias towards orcs, and goblins, and the other Mordorfolk.
180817Everything I know about cats I learned from Chuck Jones, Tex Avery, and the other documentarians at Loonie Tunes.
180816Chopsticks are the superior eating utensil, the meta-utensil. This is proven by the fact that you can use chopsticks to use other utensils, but you can't use other utensils to use chopsticks.
180815If you give me boob-sweat change pulled from your underwear, you'll be getting a stinky, sweaty, nasty tip pulled from my underwear too.
18081440,000 Americans are injured by toilets every year, almost always because they've been drinking. Take this as a warning, and don't go into bars frequented by toilets.
180813There are 88 constellations in the sky. There are also 88 keys on a piano. If you were to number the constellations and piano keys, you could then associate a specific constellation with a certain note. With these associations, it would be interesting to see what stories are told by different melodies.
180812Taco shells make great smiling hand puppets, as long as you don't put too much pressure on them to perform. They crack under pressure.
180811The Wood Thrush sifts the shadows to find abundant soil and cloaking dark.
180810When I hear about funnel webs, I think of spiders deep-frying their webs to a greasy crispness, and sprinkling them with powdered sugar, all to attract those yummy bugs with a sweet-tooth.
180809Watching a video of a marching band in action with the sound turned off is like watching a murmuration of musicians.
180808Troll fishing originally started in Norway centuries ago, though it started a little different from modern troll fishing. Norwegian fishermen would go into the forests and catch a few trolls. They would load the trolls onto their longships, along with great lengths of rope and large sacks. They'd row out into the fjords and seas. The fishermen would tie one end of the ropes around the trolls, one end around the longship, and throw the trolls overboard. The trolls would sink down in the water and swim around chasing fish. Once they'd filled their sack with fish, they'd swim back to the longship and dump their catch in the boat. They'd then return to chasing fish until they'd caught another sackful. This continued until the fishermen had enough fish, at which point they'd drag the trolls back into the boat. Ultimately, this troll fishing stopped when the trolls got tired of being thrown in the water and dragged around by wet rope.
180807The lazy dog wasn't really lazy, he was just sleeping off a weekend-long binge. The quick brown fox wasn't jumping over him in a display of cheeky arrogance, but was invoking a vulpine folk-cure for gaining immunity from hangovers for the rest of his life.
180806Plants and animals grow by consuming light, water, other plants, other animals, and other things that existed in the recent or moderate past. These items of food are built of discrete instances of the past. Generally speaking, when we eat we are consuming the past and are the physical embodiment of all that has come before. More particularly, when we eat we are consuming specific historical events. "What'd you have for dinner last night?" "Well, I started with an appetizer of weather reports, and followed with a main course of bank frauds and election results."
180805To determine how smart you actually are, you have to figure out how skilled your hands are. One hand can write and use a fork and manipulate chopsticks and do all sorts of other high-skill things. The other hand is an idiot and you're lucky if it can hold a tissue without breaking a finger. Between the two hands is your brain. By averaging the combined intelligence of your hands, you can calculate how smart your brain is. Your genitals are no help in this because they're way down below your head at the other end of your body. When you add your genitals into the equation, the only effect they have is to skew your IQ downwards.
180804If you collected all the dried-up bread crumbs from the bottoms of all the toasters, you could combine them with several fish and feed a mountainside of hungry people. Fish and croutons, that's what Jesus really fed the hungry. I'm just wondering why all those people brought their toasters with them out to the hillside.
180803"Sir Isaac Newton was only 23 when he discovered the law of gravity. Joan of Arc commanded an army when she was 17. Mozart was only 8 when he wrote his first symphony. What have you accomplished?" I don't know why people relate these kinds of facts, other than to make folks feel bad for their lack of accomplishments. They don't seem to realize that as the universe has been expanding from the Big Bang, time has been slowing down. 8 years in Mozart's time is equivalent to 17 years now. 23 years in Newton's time is equivalent to 31 years now. 17 years in Joan of Arc's time is equivalent to 47 years now. Later times for accomplishment aren't really as bad as people want you to think. Time is pointlessly relative, especially when it's being used to shame someone.
180802Over the past 100 years, the number of UFO sightings correlates with the rise of popularity of gyms and bodybuilding. On the surface, these seem like two completely unrelated things. I am certain these are tightly intertwined. I think aliens are running gyms as a means of building up the meat herds.
180801I grew up going to Second Baptist Church. At my young age, I thought too much about why it was Second Baptist and not First Baptist, and who First Baptist was, and what they were First and Second of, and church rankings, and how we could move up to First place, and how our Second was related to the Second Baptist across town. I'm glad I'm an adult now and no longer worry about foolish things.
180731I have heard that a prim, proper, caring, bloodthirsty ruthlessness lies at the heart of Southern Gentility. Southern Gentility could learn something from birdwatchers.
180730At night when I'm asleep, my beard detaches itself from my face and goes prowling around. I fear it goes hunting, but I don't know what it catches nor what it does with what it catches. It seems that I have a beard of prey.
180729Outrage, it is said, can make someone turn over in their grave. What about if they were cremated? Would they become a dust devil in an urn?
180728A year ago, I entered the hospital as a result of a collapsed lung gifted to me by the anesthesiologist for my shoulder surgery. The last Final Thought prior to going to the ER was about imaginary friends. Who knew that that could have been the actual and true Final Thought?
180727As the financial world moves deeper into the realm of electronic currency, more of our money will essentially be made of electrons. Since electrons are part of what comprises matter, and matter cannot be created or destroyed, we will find that we can no longer make or lose money; the money will just be.
180726Since the end of the Aztec empire, and their monetary system based on cacao beans, money no longer grows on trees. However, paper money is made of cotton and linen. Linen is cloth woven from flax, which is made from the stalk of a flower. Cotton is also made from a plant material. So, money doesn't grow on trees, but it does grow on plants.
180725Legos were first developed in medieval Netherlands as an early warning system against Viking invasion. This worked very well until the Danes, under King Hrowlf the Brown, invented shoes with iron soles. They invaded and stole all the Legos to bring back to Denmark. That was the final plundering trip by Danish Vikings, as they enjoyed the Legos too much to bother harassing other people.
180724Abraham Lincoln was very particular about the toilet paper he used. He wanted his favorite brand and nothing but his favorite brand. He would carry several rolls with him whereever he went, just in case The Call came upon him. He kept those rolls stacked in his tall, tall hat. History has given his hat the cleaned-up name of stove-pipe hat, but he called it his stool-wipe hat.
180723I was amused to hear someone say, "God dang it!". The funny part was what he didn't want to say. He was fine with the blasphemy, but he didn't want to invoke a strong and fiery verb.
180722Right now, the country is like a big game of Jenga. No one really wants to play, and there's just one giant jackass who's randomly pulling on things and eventually is going to make the whole construction come crashing to the ground. And just like with Jenga, if the game continues, no one is going to win.
180721Musicians rarely earn much, so winters can be cold and hard. It's quite a relief for them to have a cousin that works in a coal mine because any musician can tell you the importance of the relative miner.Music Week
180720I've always enjoyed the world of air instruments. Like most people, I started in my youth with air guitar and air drums. Before long, I'd expanded my skills to air bass and air keyboards. I've dabbled in a number of other air instruments, but I have found my niche, my specialty. I have become a master at air didgeridoo, and I'll stay with that for the rest of my days. Or at least as long as I can puff out my cheeks big and round.Music Week
180719Scrollwork on the top of a string bass is usually nondescript and indeterminate scrolly wood things. Bass makers should take a clue from the Vikings and carve that scrollwork into the heads of dragons and other fearsome beasties. Dragon heads would look so much better than plain scrolls, and might help inspire the audience to hie themselves out to the lobby to buy some band merchandise.Music Week
180718When I was a teenager, I was told to ignore the taste and keep drinking beer; eventually I'd get used to the flavor and wouldn't mind that it tasted awful. Now, I'm told to keep practicing guitar and eventually my fingers will grow scabs and callouses and I won't notice the pain when I play. Why are we expected to endure great suffering in hopes that maaaybe after great time you might come to enjoy something?Music Week
180717Thin-drawn metal wire was a wonder, almost a miracle, when it was developed centuries ago. The barbarian Vikings of Norway used it to invent the cheese-slicer. The rest of the world used metal wire to invent the guitar. (Guitar derives from "giyy ak tara", which is Tungusic-Samoyed for "slicer of fingers".) Cheese or fingers -- who are really the barbarians?Music Week
180716The thin metal strings on guitars are really great for cutting fingers into bleeding, painful strips. I now understand the origin of the term "Death Metal."Music Week
180715Blacksmith and forging techniques have taken several divergent paths, even among geographically close neighbors. For example, Irish blacksmiths used bellows-blown forges, while Scottish blacksmiths used mouth-blown forges.Music Week
180714Cooking Tip #142: (For Thanksgiving) Electric knives do, however, favor bright, exciting colors.Cooking Tips Week 2
180713Cooking Tip #141: (For Thanksgiving) Electric knives do not have taste buds.Cooking Tips Week 2
180712Cooking Tip #121: If your meat is making noise all by itself, then it probably should be returned to the butcher. Or maybe the exorcist.Cooking Tips Week 2
180711Cooking Tip #78: Spaghetti bolognese has nothing to do with bologna lunchmeat.Cooking Tips Week 2
180710Cooking Tip #64: Past smells are no guarantee of future tastes.Cooking Tips Week 2
180709Cooking Tip #23: Never buy spices where you practice your vices.Cooking Tips Week 2
180708Cooking Tip #6: Before starting any cooking project, empty the dish drain.
Cooking Tips Week 2
180706Prostitutes are consummate professionals.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180705Q: How do you know if you're seeing a turkey vulture?
A: It gobbles up everything it finds.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180704Whenever cows go to Chinese restaurants, they always drink mooolong tea and order mooo shu.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180703The politest outdoorsmen are the bow hunters.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180702Horses never go anywhere without clean nickers.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180701Q: Why are conductors on ghost trains always so happy?
A: For them, everything's always tickety-boo.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180630Hospitals share a few properties with TARDISes. Time loses all meaning and connection to reality once you enter either a hospital or a TARDIS. When you go in one, you never know when you'll be coming out. And the resident doctor always thinks they know what's best, and they often fix the problem for you.
180629Alcohol is the capo for the instrument which is the human brain.
180628I wonder if multi-armed robots would be ambidextrous or if they'd end up favoring a particular hand.
180627The right hand doesn't care what the left hand is doing.
180626I want to record an album where the tracks have titles like, "ENGAGING WARP DRIVE", "SHIELDS RAISED", "WEAPONS ARMED", "CLOAK ACTIVATED", TARGETTING ENEMY SHIP", and "FIRING PARTICLE BEAMS". The attraction of this is best seen when it's played on a modern car stereo, which would display track titles. Showing these track titles on the dashboard would be inspiring when driving in heavy traffic.
180625When visiting people, I like to secretly set their microwave timer to display "4:04". I then tell my hosts that their microwave isn't working because it can't reach the internet.
180624The internet is going to kill Lady Mondegreen.
180623There should be blankets that have light attachments lengthwise so there's a big blanket loop down the center of the blanket. When someone tries to steal the whole blanket from their bedmate, the blanket will unfasten and a large new expanse of blanket will be available, allowing both people to have a nice hunk of blanket.
180622Are people with eidetic memories allowed to go to shows that start with an announcement saying that recording of any kind is illegal?
180621Visually, titmice are the seismic anomolies of the bird world.
180620Royal protocol is that you don't turn your back on members of the royal family. This is now considered a sign of respect. I'm wondering if this is one of those centuries-old traditions that was originally instituted to protect non-royals from the more stabby members of the royal family.
180619Sailboats are essentially big water kites. I wonder what would happen if Charlie Brown tried to go sailing.
180618I've just finished binging the first season of "The Gifted" (about mutant superheroes). It was a good, though depressing, series, and I have come to a conclusion about it. Those teenagers weren't really teenagers. After getting these cool new super-powers, not once was there idle speculation about what their cool new superhero names would be.
180617I've started a new band, me and Bubba and Skeeter and Bolg Elfcrusher. Most of our gigs are at fantasy conventions. We only play orkabilly. We'll also play at Seaworld.
180616Cellphones should have built-in breathalyzers. They could be used to prevent drunk texting, drunk phoning, drunk tweeting. This simple little invention could stop people from engaging in drunken socializing they'll regret as soon as they sober up.
180615I've always been content to be in the list of top 800 Public Enemies. I don't need to be in the top ten Public Enemies, much less Public Enemy #1. I've always been an underachiever.
180614I always try to stop the microwave at 00:01, before the alarm goes off. I usually have to dash across the kitchen to hit the button in time. When I get it, I feel like I've just won a race against Usain Bolt riding Secretariat in the luge portion of the Kentucky Preakness Stakes.
180613Scientists said that enough ice has melted from Antartica over the past 25 years to cover Texas to a depth of 13 feet. This infuriates me. First, this much ice loss is terrible. Second, why would scientists promise us this about Texas if it didn't actually happen?
180612They say that laughter is the best medicine, but that isn't quite right. Here are the healing properties of physical responses, sorted from least to most efficacious: hatred, throwing up, hysterical laughter, throwing a tantrum, placid acceptance, anger, nostril flaring, cynical comments, laughter, auto-induced burping.
180611A hidden benefit of having a dark brown couch is that you can spill tea on it and it just looks like part of the upholstery.
180610I wonder if birds have an innate, instinctual reaction to the sound of eggs cracking. Do birds hear us opening a boiled egg or cracking an egg for a cake and start thinking, "Ugh. Another five mouths to fill with bugs. There goes my summer."
180609I have never liked the Triple Crown. I always fear the name of the Belmont Stakes is an indicator of the fate of the losers.
180608Entelechy is the philosophical principle of the realization of potential, or the soul. The structure of the word is proof that Aristotle and other Classical philosophers understood that, in their hearts, in their souls, humans are centered on lechery.
180607Hockey is a full-contact egg-and-spoon relay race.
180606Instead of calling our rooms things like the living room, the bedroom, and the kitchen, we should give them more meaningful names. We should start referring to the bedroom as the T-Rex Paddock and the living room as the Ankylosaurus Paddock. Of course, the dining room would be the Raptor Paddock. Then we relabel everything on the breaker box to correspond to the cool new names. When we eventually sell the house, we'll leave labels in place. The new owners will have a nice chuckle and appreciate how inventive and funny we are.
180605When people use a name initial somewhere that it isn't, strictly speaking, necessary, I like to pronounce it as part of their name. This would make me Wayne Gamorrison or Wang Morrison. You're stuck with Jo Humorrison. Some famous people would be Katie Lang, Arthur Seaclarke, Eek Cummings, Philip Kadick, Grr Martin, Louis Caka, Ursula Kleguin, Jays Bach, Petey Barnum, George Woobush. The names roll off the tongue so much better without that solitary letter whacking you to a brief verbal halt.
180604Gastroenterology is misnamed. It deals with disorders of the stomach and intestines. Not only are those organs closer to the butt than to the mouth, but routine examinations are initiated at the butt. Therefore, it should really be named gastroexitology.
180603Damn autocorrect! I told her to send nudes and she responded by sending a bunch of headlines from the newspaper.
180602I wasn't feeling well, so I got some chocolate in case it might make me feel better. My ego asked, "Why am I getting chocolate if I don't feel well?" My id said, "I am getting chocolate in case it might make me feel better." My superego said, "Don't be an idiot. Chocolate won't make me feel better if I don't feel well." My id and my ego looked askance at my superego and are in agreement -- I am now in the market for a new superego.
180601Whenever I listen to baseball on the radio, I assume the commentary is using the bases slang for sex. It makes an otherwise tedious radio show much more interesting.
180531I imagine that Alcohol walking by a gang of germs is kinda like Ripley in the alien hive in "Aliens". The germs all think they're bad-ass enough to take down Alcohol, but they're also jostling each other to get back out of her way.
180530I had a summer job in college as a clown for children's birthday parties. I would fill the balloons by inhaling from the helium tank and then exhaling into the balloons. I could only get through three or four balloons before passing out from lack or oxygen. I didn't last long at the job, but I sure did sound funny.
180529I remember back when someone added an 'l' to the sign for the Granitetown graveyard. Boy was that an unpleasant day for the quarry workers.
180528Even the stalking cat must fear the patient wolf.
180527Do sharks have infinite teeth or just a huge number of teeth? If they're infinite, then shark teeth are like hair, which is like feathers, and therefore shark teeth are almost exactly like feathers. Or maybe shark mouths are like an active, oceanic form of Schrödinger's Cat. You won't know if the shark has more teeth or no more teeth until you open its mouth to check. At the same time, shark mouths circumvent Schrödinger's Cat because you can be sure that any cats put in a shark's mouth are no longer alive. Consequently, shark mouths are the perfect meta-example of Schrödinger's Cat, because it always exists in a state of balance and uncertainty of both being sure and being unsure of the state of a problem involving the shark mouth's contents.
180526It's gross to encounter a sticky floor in a public bathroom. But it's understandable there, as you can blame it on the filthy wretches who used it before you. Somehow, it's even worse to find that the bathroom in your own home is sticky, especially when the only people living there are you and your wife.
180525Technology has ruined emojis. They started out as simple ASCII constructs that kinda sorta resembled smiling or frowning faces -- as best could be done with a non-graphics terminal. Then terminal technology improved, and the faces got a little bit more detailed. Technology improved further, and further, and then further still, and now we have active emoji, colorful emoji, mobile emoji, three-dimensional emoji. You can now write entire sentences with these moving, dancing, emoting modern-day hieroglyphics. All from what started as cute, innocuous "faces" constructed of punctuation. Technology has ruined emojis.
180524Common knowledge has it that hair collects in a tub drain, and that you need to keep the drain clean so that the tub will drain faster. This is an instance where common knowledge is incorrect in the reasoning, though it is correct in the required actions. What people think is drain hair is actually the extremities of the Denizens from Below. The Denizens from Below reach up through sewer pipes, through household plumbing, to tub drains and grasp hold of the drains. They slowly, calmly, exert their strength on the tub drains to pull themselves up through the sewer pipes, through the household plumbing, thence to emerge into a dwelling. Once there, they lie in wait for the residents. Surprising the residents, the Denizens enfold them in their slimy, disgusting embrace until they have absorbed and ingested their hapless victims. Above ground, the Denizens have an easier time finding and capturing prey, and tirelessly work to extract themselves from the sewery depths. The only way to fight this is to keep your tub drain clean and sparkling.
180523I am sad and disappointed. I have missed my calling in life. Watching a few movies recently, I've noticed a job in the credits that I desperately wish I had. I really, really want to be the one to trigger all the explosions that happen in a movie. I wish I could be a BOOM! operator.
180522It pisses me off that our culture finds it acceptable for women to have names and nicknames traditionally assigned to men, yet it's unacceptable to give men names and nicknames traditionally assigned to women. This is a subtle indication that it's acceptable for women to aspire to manly things, but not for men to aspire to womanly things. This disparity really makes me angry.
180521The next time a local election comes around, I think I'll run for Board of Education. I'll put bananas on my campaign signs.
180520The Catholic Church will be selling air fresheners made of blessed materials. They'll be called Pope-pourri.
180519On the Peanuts TV specials, it always sounds like the adults are really cussing up a storm whenever they talk to the kids.
180518Within three days after death, the enzymes in the digestive tract that were used to digest food start to digest the body itself. This tells me that we are inhabited by cruel, demanding parasites that will destroy us if we don't bow down to their insatiable demands for food.
180517Years ago, the Unix fortune file had jokes and anecdotes and words of wisdom. It was an easy and fun way to waste a nice chunk of time reading a bunch of fortune-file entries. All you had to do was fire up an editor on your local machine and start reading the fortune file. These days, we have image macros and memes that fill the same function. You can go to so many places on the internet and blow hours reading the memes and macros. The internet has become the Unix fortune file.
180516Funeral homes are places of intense emotion. They can be confusing and distressing for children, overwhelming and painful for adults. It would be helpful for everyone if funeral homes had some sort of "time out" area where people could go for a while when they needed a bit of distraction or a chance to focus on something besides the reason they're there. Funeral homes should each have a mini-golf course for people.
180515Unless it comes to counting treats, dogs are really bad at math. That's why they are notoriously bad gamblers. Even something simple like a dice game is beyond their limited mathematical skills. Dice games are the only gambling that dogs have even a rudimentary understanding of. Even then, six sides on the dice are just too much for them to handle. They really, really want to gamble, they're just, um, crap at it. This is why dogs love it when someone throws a ball for them. They think the human is gambling, and they get to be the croupier. (They don't even distinguish between the roles in gambling.) The human rolls the ball, the dog fetches the ball, the human takes another turn. The dog doesn't know if the human is winning or losing, and probably doesn't care, but he knows darn well that he himself is winning.
180514They've got a hard, rough, rock-like shell. Open it up and you'll find a small treasure, a delightful morsel, awaiting you inside. Geodes are the geological clams of the Earth.
180513When I'm discombobulated, I like to sit and read, with a snack, and with something to help my head not hurt. In other words, that means I like to curl up with a tablet, and some tablet, and a few tablets.
180512Heimdall's big claim to fame was that he could see or hear anything, even realms away. You want to know what's happening way over in Jotunheim? Go ask Heimdall. Want to know what Frigga is up to in Midgard? Heimdall can tell you. How can you really know though? Heimdall could say anything he wanted and how would anyone know any different? I bet he was lying about this remarkable ability, and he just wanted something to set him apart from everyone.
180511Looking down from the choir loft, wearing the wrong glasses, I saw someone wearing cat ears. I think. Since I had the wrong glasses, I couldn't tell if they were cat ears or devil's horns. In retrospect, I wonder if there's really a difference.
180510I could never be a hobbit. The first three of their standard meals are breakfast, second breakfast, and elevenses. Elevenses must start right around 11am, or they'd be called something-elses. Assuming two hours between the start of each meal, that would put breakfast at 7am and second breakfast at 9am. Prep time for breakfast would require one to be up at 6am, maybe 6:30. I feel that's entirely too early to be getting up, even for food, thus showing that I could never be a hobbit.
180509Gulls seem to have little respect for personal space and private property. They must be communists.
180508This time of year, most people are working hard on their beach body. Tanning, dieting, weightlifting, exercising. They all want to get their bodies prepared for showing off at the beach. I've taken a different tack. For the past six months, I've been working on my beach brain. It's all done, and it should not be taken out and shown to anyone anywhere.
180507I went to a Silent Auction. Despite what you might think from watching Doctor Who, they weren't selling any aliens at all. At least I don't think so. I did end up with a bunch of black lines on my arms, for some reason.
180506I wonder what a topological mathemetician considers to be a safe space.
180505I've seen lots of "Sheep to Shawl" competitions, but the competitions I'd like to see are "Cow to Cookout" or "Beef to Bun" or "Fish to Flan".
180504The Empire has a bit of a PR problem. What with their threatening high-level officers having very poor management skills, their generic soldiers being called stormtroopers, and the emperor looking and acting like a zombie prune. The Empire really needs to work on projecting a warm, cozy, and family-friendly image. At the very least, the Empire should replace its ominous, stompy march with something that instead of shouting, "We're from the Empire and you're deadbeef!" Instead, they should have a theme that coos, "We're from the Empire and we're here to help! With puppies!"
180503At band last night, I got called "Sir" by two different people. One was a college student and the other was someone I've known from band for several years -- and who's been out of college at least that long. I am of two minds at receiving these two Sirs. First, I am gratified that these Young Whippersnappers have learned some manners and know how to talk politely to their Esteemed Elders. Second, I guess I am looking older than I feel, to the point where I seem to need that polite title. I was coming off a bad cold last night, so maybe that made me look decades older than I am. Yeah, I'll blame the cold; the cold made me look like a semi-preserved corpse.
180502They say it's good to find joy in the small things, as well as the large things. While I agree with this, I do find it funny how excited we get over each new tenth of a gallon we get in our well.
180501If nothing else, the movie "Witness" taught me to be very suspicious of unknown cars that pull into my driveway.
180430As I finished charging my phone at Jo's parents' house, I realized that charging a phone at someone else's house is a quiet way of telling them, "I'm going to take a little bit of your money now."
180429The phrase is "hugs and kisses" rather than "kisses and hugs" thanks to the abbreviation (which, oddly enough, is always doubled.) Not only does OXOX sound dumber than XOXO, it sounds like you're trying to summon some bovines.
180428A lot of medicines have an instruction that they should be taken with food. This is often more trouble than it's worth, having to balance off the medicine and food and meals. The drug manufacturers should save everyone the trouble of coordinating food preparation and medicating and food eating. Drug manufacturers should bake those medicines straight into cookies.Food Week 10
180427A lot of food companies publish recipes of wonderful things to be made with their food. The ingredients lists are always very specific: "1 box of Bob's Chicken Noogies, 1 pound of Mary's Sriracha Sugar". Invariably, the companies named in the ingredients list always lead back to one big food corporation. For some reason, these big food corporations never recommend using ingredients from other big food corporations. However, it's easy enough to sneer at these transparent attempts to force consumers to buy only that BFC's products. I think the next big advance in genetically modified food will be for BFCs to modify their products to only work with their own products. No more mash-ups of products or sneering at recipes for us. Trying to mix different BFCs' food products will render one or the other -- or both -- inedible.Food Week 10
180426When I was young, I used to think I liked asparagus. When I got older, I realized that what I really liked was cheese sauce.Food Week 10
180425There are two ways to have leftover pancakes, both equally valid and acceptable. The first is to heat the pancakes and then pour syrup on top. The other way, favored by psychopaths, subhumans, and freedom-haters, is to pour the syrup on the pancakes and then heat them both together.Food Week 10
180424Someday, someone is going to make a strain of genetically engineered popcorn that tastes like salt and butter. Not only will they make a fortune, but it will be the thing that forever extinguishes the protests against genetically modified food.Food Week 10
180423There are these cookies that are the antimatter to chocolate-chip cookies' matter. The other cookies have chocolate dough and these white-colored chips. They aren't quite as good as chocolate-chip cookies, but they're still quite good. I got a bag of the white-colored chips and they're pretty good by themselves. Despite what I thought, those white-colored chips are not necessarily white chocolate. The bag says they're "Classic White Chips". I read that and I got real scared. Anything could be in those chips. They might be -- and probably are -- just lard and sugar. But that might just be a base for a subtle way to get rid of spare pork fat, or brussels sprouts, or industrial waste, or troublesome employees. There's no telling what horrors those Classic White Chips may contain. They do taste good though, and they make good cookies.Food Week 10
180422Carrots and parsnips and brussels sprouts all taste great, if they've been prepared properly. The best way to prepare them is to start by running them through a food processor. I highly recommend the brand of food processor known as The Cow.Food Week 10
180421I want to open a gym that is almost entirely a rock-climbing floor. It's like a rock-climbing wall, but with the knobby bits and handholds attached to the floor. People would come to practice how to get over obstacles when they're falling-down drunk.
180420A critical time is fast approaching, due to hit early in the morning of January 19, 2038. At this point, many of the world's computers will suddenly start thinking that the date has become December 13, 1901. This is because these computers store the date in a signed 32-bit integer, as the count of the number of seconds since January 1, 1970 -- the Epoch Time. At the point in 2038, through the magic of computers, the count will suddenly become a negative number, which translates as that time in 1901. Rather than try to do something like increase the bit size of the computer clocks, or make the clock an unsigned number, I've got a cunning plan on how to fix this. I think someone should write a benevolent computer virus that will spread throughout the whole world and gather data on the oldest file in existence. After spending 10 years scouring the internet for the oldest file, all the world's computers and operating systems and programmers will then agree that that oldest file's date is the new Epoch Time, and everything will change to that. It will be simplicity itself, safe and secure. Surely no one will complain about this cunning plan.
180419Every holiday needs to have a mascot, a low-detail, easily recognizable symbol that Reese's can make a peanut-butter cup version of.
180418There are people who say about Trump, "He isn't my president!". While I can understand the distaste, I am not willing to hold that view. If I say that about Trump, then with some legitimacy they can say that about Obama. If I accept that Trump is my president, then they have got to accept that Obama was their president. As bad as Trump is, I think it bothers them a helluva lot more to have had Obama for president than it does me to have Trump for president.
180417You have set yourself up for great happiness. Most people only have a Bluebird of Happiness. You, on the other hand, have a Bluebird of Happiness, a Flicker of Happiness, a Brown Thrasher of Happiness, a Starling of Happiness, a Chickadee of Happiness, a Redheaded Woodpecker of Happiness, a Pigeon of Happiness, a Cooper's Hawk of Happiness, a Parrot of Happiness, ... The list goes on and on.
180416Many microwaves have buttons that are difficult to push. The keypads just don't want to respond. The manufacturers really need to do better at making responsive keypads. In order to protest this, I have decided to stop pushing and pushing and pushing the same button until it finally deigns to notice me. If it doesn't register the push the first time, then I'm going on to the next button I was needing to hit. I'm not going to change my behavior, let the microwave change it's behavior.
180415A fashion for TV police shows is to build the whole show around a character that isn't a cop, but rather a civilian consultant who is instrumental in the police solving the crime of the week. However, these consultants always have some sort of gimmick or trick. There have been psychics, ultra-observant people, super-athletes, and con men. When you look at these consultants as a group, it's easy to see that they are all essentially carnival and sideshow workers. The carny/police consultant I haven't seen yet is one that is an actual clown. As much as I dislike clowns, I might be interested in a cop show where the civilian consultant was a clown. It'd be interesting to see how, week after week, a clown's special skills would help solve crimes. If the clown consultant was Pennywise the Dancing Clown, then I would definitely watch it.
180414It's weird that eighth rests look like sevens.
180413I've never had an invigilator, but the word alone chills my soul the same way Dementors did in Harry Potter.
180412Once in college, I went out with this girl. Only once, though, because she really scared me. At first, I thought she said she was looking for a soul mate but I soon realized she'd actually said soul meat.
180411If I were a vampire, I'd always wear that fake-tan stuff to make it look like I had a nice, healthy tan. Then, everyone I meet would think, "Look at him, he has such a nice tan. There's no way he's a vampire." And then they would be mine.
180410Whenever he comes crashing through a wall, you can see the Kool-Aid Man is carrying around a smaller pitcher of Kool-Aid. This means that every day is Bring Your Child to Work Day for the Kool-Aid Man. What with all the falling bricks and construction materials, it seems the Kool-Aid Man should be charged with reckless endangerment of a minor.
180409The first body part human fetuses develop in the womb is the anus. Unfortunately, some people decide that's good enough and stop there.
180408When saying the Lord's Prayer this morning, I accidentally said, "Lead us not into tentation." That mis-speaking fits with the story of Moses, since Moses led the Israelites through the desert and to the Promised Land, living in tents along the way. I think 40 years of living in tents would make almost anyone desire not to be led into tentation.
180407Years and years of zombie movies have taught me that, no matter what other necessary gun-control laws are enacted, we must leave shotguns available to the average person.
180406Living with parrots means constantly living with a shit on your shoulder.
180405Historical lore holds that vampires have no souls, which is why they have no reflections and can't be photographed. However, since you can see vampires light itself must have no soul-detecting properties. It follows that mirrors are actually the things that are able to detect who or what has a soul. Since you can photograph animals and you can see animals in mirrors, this proves that -- despite what some narrow-minded, sanctimonious weinerheads say -- animals have souls and will go to Heaven.
180404We have a cultural problem with sex because our sex organs are located close to the butt. If the sex organs were located near the head, we'd be much less neurotic about sex.
180403No matter how often I tell people that the Pied Piper is my favorite fairy tale, very few people take the hint and make me pies.
180402With their little arms held close to the chest, the bent-over stance, and walking on their tiptoes, T-Rexes always look like they're trying to sneak up on you.
180401I got up this morning before the parrots were active. I heard them moving around a little, and making gentle little noises. At one point, one of them made their soft little "whoo" noise. I realized then that African Grey Parrots are really owls.
180331I find it hard to trust those who demand that All Lives Matter! when they're so often the same ones who just as strongly demand that they be able to buy assault weapons.
180330Printed t-shirts are temporary tattoos for those who can't commit to ink.
180329News traffic reporters have a thick manual for how to do their job. It covers everything from how to pilot the helicopter to what profanities can and can't be used on air. They have to memorize the whole book, copter and curse.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180328I used to have a big roach problem at home -- roaches all over the house. Then my druggie cousin Kevin moved out of our basement, and the roach problem disappeared overnight.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180327Two mathemeticians had a discrete lunch together in different restaurants.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180226The Hippocratic Oath was originally intended to stop doctors from criticizing wildlife about being overweight.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180325Single donkeys are always looking for a nice piece of ass.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180324Did you hear about the historian who was so stupid he thought the Delian League was a measurement of distance?Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180323Q: What was Cleopatra's least favorite pain killer?
A: Asp-irinGrandson of Dumb Joke Week
180322A few minutes after I turned my light off last night to go to sleep, I felt something I'd never felt before. Jo reached over and gently pushed two fingers into the small of my back, right in the middle. It felt very deliberate and intentional, as if the placing of the fingers was important. I started wondering if she thought I was an android or robot. If she didn't like the current Wayne and was doing a factory reset in order to recover the original Wayne. I don't know what conclusions I reached because in the middle of wondering about that, I fell asleep and didn't wake up until the next morning, feeling content and refreshed.
180321Wood is composed of cellulose fibers, which makes woodcarving a fiber art.
180320When I was a kid, a common slang term for the television was the "boob tube". I must have misinterpreted that as a promise, but it confused me because there were never any boobs shown on TV. After all these years, I suspect that that slang term actually developed as politicians got more and more airtime.
180319One of the many problems I had in my single disastrous season attempting to play Little League baseball was the concept of "chatter." Ignoring the way engaging in "chatter" makes one sound like an idiot, I was worried about the ethical consequences of "chatter." If I can coerce a batter to swing when they otherwise wouldn't have, isn't that an incident of bad sportsmanship? Shouldn't I let their natural baseball talents -- good or bad -- come through to let them succeed or fail on their own merits? And there's also the possibility of how it reflects on me. If my "chatter" coerces an opponent to swing at a pitch they otherwise wouldn't have swung at, and then they score a run, does that make me a party to my opponent's success and therefore a traitor to my own team?
180318When I start my car, for some reason the dashboard flashes all the warning lights. I think it does this in order to jolt the driver with adrenalin so they're suddenly awake, suddenly sober, before they start driving. Today I saw a brand new warning light, one I've never seen before. It showed an image of the steering wheel, immediately followed by an exclamation point. Both in bright, glowing red. What does this warning mean? Is the steering wheel about to fall off? Is the steering wheel not working properly? Why is this problem so common that it requires its very own warning light?
180317There is no such thing as "Taffeta"; the one true name of the fabric is "Taffeta, Darling".
180316As children, we ate popsicles -- which are frozen, flavored water. There's a bit of a bias against adults enjoying childish things such as popsicles, so as adults we drink tea -- which is hot, flavored water. It appears that the difference between children and adults is the temperature of our snacks.
180315Tinder is a modern-day example of Schrödinger's popular thought experiment. Rather than dealing with feline mortality, however, Tinder deals with mate selection. When a Tinder user expresses interest in a potential mate (by swiping right on them), that state of selection is presented to the potential mate to accept or reject. Until they do, the potential mate is in a state of having accepted and having rejected the original user all at the same time. No hammers, poisons, boxes, or cats are required. This version of Schrödinger's thought experiment is far superior to the original because it is much more applicable to most people and no cats get killed. Or left alive.
180314Pi Day's connection to numbers and math is only an incidental excuse. Bob and I invented Pi Day because of that one time that we tried to see how many pies we could eat before one of us couldn't eat any more. We'd just started the fourth pie when we simultaneously threw in our forks. The three factors -- a little over three pies, trying this on March 14th, and embarassment at our own gluttony -- caused us to name it Pi Day instead of Pie Day.
180313The Empire keeps building Death Stars, and rebels keep destroying Death Stars. Rather than keeping on going after individual Death Stars, or emperors, or evil jedi, we need to look at why the Empire keeps building Death Stars. Who is gaining by the Empire continually building new Death Stars? It's certainly not the average citizen, as the Death Stars will be used to oppress them. It isn't the Empire's military, as they have massive losses in personnel across the whole spectrum of professions whenever a Death Star is destroyed. The Empire's R&D organizations aren't really developing anything new, just building the same old things, and they're also losing people whenever a Death Star is destroyed. I think the real winners here are the rebels, since the Death Stars give them an undeniable reason to exist. I think it's clear that the rebels are driving imperial policy to continually build a new Death Star for every one the rebels destroy. The rebels are leaning heavily on the military construction contractors, who are leaning on the Empire, who then build a new Death Star. It's a vicious cycle, with the rebels greasing the wheels.
180312One person's Single Point of Failure is another person's Single Point of Control.
180311I'm going to create a new bearspray that hikers can use in bear-habitat wildernesses. Instead of being like normal pepper sprays that irritate bears, my new bearspray will smell like raw meat and bacon. Rather than spraying it in the bear's face when you see a bear, you spray it on someone you're hiking with. Then it won't matter who can run faster, you just have to run away from the person you sprayed.
180310There have been recent suggestions that teachers should carry guns to protect against school shootings. In addition to a multitude of reasons why that's a terrible idea, there's another that hasn't been discussed. Teaching is a high-stress, low-pay job. Do we really want to be arming highly stressed people that are underappreciated and aren't being paid what their jobs deserve?
180309It appears that Gelfling essence is the primary ingredient in Skekses viagra.
180309Dark Crystal would have been better with 25% more car chases.
180308Way back when phones were all attached to landlines, I bet you could have made a fortune if you'd sold a phone with an on/off switch. Phone makers really missed an opportunity when they never made phones with these switches. The primary reason that cell phones have become so popular is that they can be turned off.
180307I keep hearing commentators and late-night presenters saying, "These are unprecedented times" in regards to the current US executive branch. I don't think they have it quite right and should really be saying, "These are unpresidented times."
180306If I have learned anything from The Twilight Zone, it's that not many people in the future want decorations in their homes or offices.
180305It just isn't fair. Many spend the winter and spring working hard at dieting and exercising, getting to their optimal weight and fitness. They're looking good, they're healthy. They're ready with their summer body, ready for the beach. Then along comes Farmer Bob and carts these pigs off to the sausage factory to make a bunch of summer sausage. It just isn't fair.
180304The US Post Office has released figures showing that in 2016, postal workers were attacked by almost 7,000 dogs. If I were a mailman, I'd refuse to go to any neighborhood with that many dogs in it.
180303Occasionally, I'll hear a story of someone's experience with Mr. Rogers. Invariably, Mr. Rogers has done something amazing, uplifting, loving for that person, in a quiet, unassuming, and personal -- yet universal -- way. Fred Rogers was an incredible person, a light that shone for the world. We need so many more people like him. I wish I could grow up to be like him. However, someone like Mr. Rogers only comes around once a lifetime, if we're lucky.
180302People are inherently voyeuristic. This may be seen by observing people when they enter a room that has a computer. Their eyes are inexorably drawn to the screen, looking to see what's displayed. The "Trending" and "What's Popular" sidebars that many websites provide are letting people see what others are looking at. I want to start a new meta search engine, tentatively named Voogle, that supports these voyeuristic inclinations. Whenever someone submits a query to Voogle, they'll get the results from a real search engine that came from another Voogle user's query. Another user's query will return the results from the first user's query. Since people will eventually want to see the answer to their own query, that response will be provided in a separate window. Voogle will satisfy two basic human needs -- the need for information and the need to snoop on others. The VC money should start rolling in any minute now.
180301It was always hard to find the cultists. They knew enough to keep their heads (and tentacles) low as they tried to recruit more people to their cult. It would have been helpful to know where potential recruits were, but they were too hard to find on their own and we had to look for the actual cultists. That has changed now that the internet is widely used by the public. Now us "cultist remediators" use the internet to search both for cultists and for potential cultists. It usually comes down to one obsession shared by both. Potential cultists can be found by tracking their obsession. Cultists can be found by tracking their own tracking of the potential cultists' obsession, not to mention their own obsession with the potentials' obsession. Thanks to the internet, we may be able to stamp out followers of Cthulhu once and for all. And it all comes down to tracking orders of anchovy pizza.
180201True names have a long pedigree in mythology, folklore, and fantasy literature. Knowing something's True Name is the only way to master or include it in magic. In some tales, true names are required for invoking magic. In Genesis, Adam is given the task of giving names to all the animals. Following the "true name" system of magic, Adam must therefore have been not only the first wizard, but a wizard of such strength that he was able to give true names.
180202I love the two Jumanji movies. Whenever I see them, I can't help but think about what sort of psychopath would create that game. Torturing, maybe killing, children (and their families, as shown in the two cinematically documented examples) is horrible, especially when the children were just looking to play a game. Sure, they're just movies, but how could anyone want to make such a game? That requires a ghastly level of sadism. On my most recent viewing of Jumanji 2, I had a revelation. Jumanji isn't a method of torture disguised as a game (like Monopoly is.) Rather, it's a means of providing counselling and advice to at-risk teens and adults, allowing them to come to grips with the problems that are interfering with their lives. Jumanji is actually a participation-required, immersion tool for guidance counselors.
180203When it comes to percussion, I prefer Boron players; there's just something elemental about their music.
180204Most people don't have a clue how to properly use a microphone. As long as our culture is so media obsessed, children should be taught basic mic~handling skills in elementary school. It's becoming a life-skill, a survival skill.
180205I find it very confusing when people say, "Go big or go home." If I've got to "go big", then I kinda think I really want to be home, so it would be "Go home then go big." However, if I have to "go big", I might really want to mess up somewhere other than my home, so it would be "Leave home and go big."
180206I am too tech-spoiled. We were baiting the new live-trap mousetraps and I started wishing we'd looked for wifi-enabled mousetraps that would tell us when they'd been sprung. It doesn't occur to me to ask if such things exist; I just automatically assume that of course they exist.
180207I took a stagecraft class in college. This was really cool because I learned all sorts of things about construction and building and rigging and painting and lighting. This was really bad because the focus was on putting something together that looked good and functional from a distance; but not how well things looked from a close-up vantage, things that were clearly temporary, did not look good, and were disconcerting in functionality. So now I'm anxious to help fix stuff around the house, but it's rather dangerous to let me anywhere near household maintenance.
180208Driving home, I spun out on the ice and came very close to being whacked by a snow plow. While spinning around, my life flashed before my eyes, and the soundtrack to my life was Freddie Mercury repeatedly singing, "AH-AAH!"
180209Y'know how there are these pedal-propelled trike kinds of things that look like fire engines and dump trucks? Someone should make one of those that looks like a Zamboni, they'd make a fortune.
180210I've always liked figure skating because it often incorporates good classical music as an integral part of the sport. That could work well with other sports, too. Hockey with Mozart's horn concertos. Football with Mendelssohn's oratorios. Basketball with Beethoven's symphonies. Golf with... just about anything. Many sports would be improved if the game sportscasters were replaced with classical music.
180211In today's scripture (Mark 9:2-9), the version used had Peter say that he would build "three booths" on the mountaintop for Jesus, Elijah, and Moses. I hear the word booth and I think of Lucy's psychiatric-help booth. I'm wondering what sort of advice these three would give for a shekel. Maybe Jesus would give tips on household maintenance and carpentry, Moses would give advice on outdoor adventures, and Elijah would give help with barbeques.
180212Here are my suggestions for future Winter Olympic events: slopestyle paintball biathlon, airborne slopstyle competitive eating, cross-country curling, straightening, Olympic village freestyle loogie slalom, tedsled, snowboard halfhookah, musculature, synchronized freestyle skiing, and gangnam-style skiing.
180213Is a nap really effective if you wake yourself up with every buzzsaw snore you make?
180214In the Information Age, we're generating enormous mounds of new information and preserving gigantic heaps of old information. My current work involves data about how the new and old information move around the internet. However, we're analyzing this information about information in order to create new information. This will be information about information about information. As hoards of this information grow, we'll eventually start looking into how it is stored and transferred, thus creating new information about information about information about information. I think I need a cookie.
180215The extreme instances of nationalism at the Olympics have bothered me for many years. It's seemed to violate the spirit of the Olympics, which should be focussed on sports excellence and not on country-based medal counts. I don't know where I got this idea; it seems contrary to how most others watch the games. This year seems different though. The joined Koreas at the opening ceremonies, the joined Korea hockey team, a number of athlete interactions, these make these games look like they're going to do a better job of meeting my idea of the Olympic ideal.
180216Whenever a new superhero movie is announced, you know the merchandising is on its way. A big part of the merchandise is the superhero action figure. It'd be really cool if every movie had action figures of its characters. Mozart and Salieri from "Amadeus". Phil, Rita, and Ned Ryerson from "Groundhog Day". Nick and Nora from "The Thin Man". Anyone from "Cold Comfort Farm". I would spend all my money on action figures.
180217Britain's oldest complete skeleton is known as Cheddar Man, and is 10,000 years old. He has recently been found to have dark skin and blue eyes. At 10,000 years old, he can certainly said to be well-aged and he counts as an extra-sharp Cheddar. Even at 10,000 years, he still has a while before hitting his Asda best-by date.
180218To Bob, squirrels are always giving him that "come hither" tail twitch. To squirrels, they see Bob and silently scream, "AAAGH! It's Bob!" and give the terror-tail twitch to warn the other squirrels.
180219When Elon Musk launched his Tesla roadster into space, he said it was because he liked the idea of it orbiting for a billion years. As you'd expect, some astrophysicists have plotted the Tesla's path in space to check the timing. They've concluded that the car has a few million years, at best, before it crashes into the Earth, Venus, or the Sun. Elon and the astrophysicists (which sounds like a geek-science rock band) haven't taken human nature into account. Soon after the arrival of cheap, everyman space flight, someone is going to retrieve that Tesla and bring it home as a souvenir or put it up for auction. I give it 250 years from now, tops, before that Tesla is back on Earth.
180220Spelling checkers should always flag the word "pubic" and force the writer to validate that they really do want to use the pubic.
180221People put things on their flags that are important to them. Wales and Bhutan both put a dragon on their flags. Albania put a double-headed eagle on its flag. The Cayman Islands put a lion and a turtle on theirs. A number of primarily Moslem countries use religious symbols on their flags. Mexico has a snake-killing eagle and some historical things representing human sacrifice. California has a bear and Wyoming has a buffalo. I can understand how people want those symbols on their flags, they all make a lot of sense. Then we come to Canada. Canada has the best flag of all. They've got a maple leaf with a red stripe on each side of it. On the surface this seems a bit weird, but it's actually really cool. The maple leaf is showing that maple trees are extremely important to Canada. Why would this be? you ask. I will answer you. Maple leafs grow on maple trees. Maple trees are the creators and dispensers of that amazing ambrosia, maple syrup and maple syrup is used on pancakes. The red stripes are symbolic of bacon. Canada's flag is a very friendly welcome to the world. It's saying, "Hey there, we're the land of pancakes and bacon. Come and visit, any time of day, we'll have breakfast together." Canada, it's a magical place.
180222Olympics hockey should be revised to require a jump whenever the puck is shot for a goal. Not only would the players be required to perform a lutz, an axel, or a salchow, but the number of spins would act as a multiplier. Do a single lutz and a goal gets one point. Score on a triple salchow and you rack up three points. This common ground between hockey and figure skating would be in the spirit of the Olympics by bringing together different disciplines and helping athletes improve talents and skills.
180223Facebook needs a Like button that is really an "I'm clicking this for a friend, but I don't care about this so please just increase their Like count, make it look like I Like their thing, and don't ever show me the posts" button.
180224A lot of people have the personal goal of leaving things better than when they came. This is an admirable goal, and I respect people who have this ambition. To support and help folks in attaining this goal, my own goal is to leave things worse than before I got there.
180225Olympics coverage has all these heartwarming stories of how the athletes have overcome adversity, beaten terrible odds, healed from awful injuries, and are now at the Olympics, competing with their sport's cream of the crop, hoping to win a medal. Or at least to do an admirable job in competition. These inspirational stories have gotten trite and banal. Tom Gotlieb, overcame a homeless childhood; Mary Calverson, came back from a broken hyoid bone; Jane Wickers, never rode a horse before last Tuesday and now she's in the steeplechase; Ned Ryerson, beaten up by a street thug days before the games started. Meh. All those are meh. I think it would be much more interesting if the athletes would adopt names and personas the way lucha libre wrestlers do. Here are some lucha libre wrestlers: Battle Kat, Arachnaman, Abyss, Lazer-Tron, Lord Humongous, Scorpio Sky, Wrath. Now those are some people I want to watch in figure skating or speed skating or downhill skiing or hockey or synchronized swimming.
180226The prose of crows is better than the books of rooks.
180227As a teen, I was in a metal band. Thick guitar sounds, stacks and stacks of Marshalls, power-driven angry songs, black leather, long hair. We were typical angry young teenage metalheadbangers. We were called Døömpuppy. There were some whackadoodles who complained about our name, thinking we were advocating the doom of puppies, maybe even hurting puppies in our spare time. How could anyone even think we would want to hurt adorable little fluffballs? No, nothing like that. Døömpuppy was the puppy that would bring doom and black flaming destruction to the world.
180228A Palindrome is a word, phrase, or number that is spelled (digited) the same going frontwards or backwards. We need a name for words, phrases, and numbers that are exact mirror images frontwards and backwards. We should call them Cleesedromes.
180101When we got pregnant, we tried to have a "Gender Reveal" party, but everyone kept telling me to put my pants back on.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180102Q: What is an owl's favorite dessert?
A: A hoot fudge sundae.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180103During dog church services, the plate is passed during the arffertory.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180104Q: What is a vampire's favorite fruit?
A: Blood oranges.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
1801051100 years ago, the Vikings tried to colonize North America. It didn't quite work out, but they did make their mark on an area in the Central Atlantic region. It was known as Norse Carolina.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180106I was wanting some positive blood oranges, but all they had were AB-negatives.Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180107Q: What is a cat's favorite part of Carmina Burana?
A: O For Tuna!Grandson of Dumb Joke Week
180108I keep hearing that when pets die, they cross the Rainbow Bridge into a blissful afterlife. The road to Asgard, and thus Valhalla, passes over Bifrost the Rainbow Bridge. This indicates that Odin has changed strategy. Instead of getting warriors to fight for him in the upcoming Ragnarok, Odin has decided to rely on the the loyalty, strength, and valor of pets to help him defeat Hel and her army.
180109Despite the old stereotype, Vikings did not wear horned helmets. Of course their helmets didn't have horns, that would be just silly. Who in their right mind would put horns on their war helmet? Viking helmets had antlers.
180110Through the power of language, the Doctor always wins. The Doctor's enemies always want to do things to him, but they never manage to succeed -- because they get confused by his name. If they're doing things to him, is it still Doctor Who or should it be Doctor Whom? Which takes precedence, the name or the grammar? By the time the enemies come to a conclusion, he's already won the game.
180111The Fifth Doctor said, "A man is the sum of his memories". I don't think that's really true. A person is the product of their memories, not the sum. For one thing, with imperfect memory storage and recall, our memories can affect each other. We might remember a particular event, but put it in the context (e.g., time, place, season, participants) of one or more unconnected memories -- thus creating a new memory from the combination of the old. In addition, our memories can be acted on by our imagination and create completely new thoughts and ways of thinking. All these new thoughts, created from and in conjunction with the old, are what makes a person.
180112Magnets are proof that God loves us and wants us to have fun.
180113Stephen Hawking recently predicted that humanity is dangerously close to the tipping point where species doom is inevitable. If that's true, then I might as well go on and have that third piece of chocolate cake.
180114Anyone with any sense knows that it's very dangerous to read or send texts while driving. I saw a billboard on this issue, with lots of text talking about this danger. It really makes me wonder about the people behind that PSA campaign. How could they not see that this was a different form of the same issue? Reading dense billboards is just as bad as texting for pulling focus and concentration away from the road, resulting in distracted driving.
180115Someone needs to invent an autonomous, mobile, hot~water bottle. You'd put it in bed at your feet and it would slowly crawl around under the covers searching out the cold spots. Once it had warmed up an area it would move onwards to another cold spot. It would keep this up all night, keeping the whole bed toasty warm.
180116One of the notable features of the Squirrel programming language is that it provides tail recursion. With a name like Squirrel, how could it not provide tail recursion?
180117The Rule of Punctuational Elegance states that consecutive punctuation must only be placed in groups that are prime numbers in length.
180118Whenever you have a big family meal, there is an inevitable shifting around of plates, bowls, and cups as everyone tries to get their setting adjusted to their liking. This shifting, prior to everything coming together into settled positions, is a good example of what scientists call "plate tectonics".
180119Trump is a cunning plan of the Republican Party to make us look back with fondness on the days of Bush 2.
180121There's a very common anxiety dream wherein the dreamer must take an exam for a class they've never attended. A cyberpunk trope involves people having a direct computer interface to their brains; learning or acquiring a new skill only requires inserting the appropriate chip and downloading its information. I wonder how the test anxiety dream will change if that cyberpunk trope becomes reality. Maybe the dreamer will need to fly a helicopter, but can't find the helicopter-pilot chip. Maybe the dreamer will need to give the toast at a wedding, but they have an LVC socket and can only find an LC1 toastmaster chip. No matter what it is, that anxiety dream will plague the world -- until someone creates a software patch to filter out anxiety dreams.
180122In fairy tales, princes are forever being deceived and cursed by witches and enchanted creatures. I think if I was a prince I'd be so worried about every interaction and chance encounter, that I'd be paralyzed and unable to do anything.
180123Three blind men each touched a different part of an elephant. Those three blind men should have been charged with molesting the elephant.
180124I've heard people use the phrase "People have taste for shit". The way it's used, I think they really mean to say "People have shit for taste." The first means that people like shit, while the second means that people have terrible taste. It's a subtle difference, but it's important.
180125Nanobots have been envisioned as being microscopic robots that are capable of a wide array of things -- medical checks and screenings, surgical procedures, manufacturing, and food creation, to name a few. It is expected that they'll be able to work together to accomplish these tasks, even to the point of AI-levels of self-organization, cooperation, and adaptation. There has been discussion of the potential for them using their own selves to build various needed structures and objects. If nanobots will be capable of these various behaviors, how can we be sure that nanobots haven't already been created, and are now "living" in our world as mega-sized nanobot accretions, disguised in the shapes of birds, rodents, or other living creatures?
180126When I was a kid, TV stations would sign off for the night at a late hour. Whenever my friends and I would have a sleep-over. we'd always stay up until that one channel signed off with an inspiring video of Magee's poem "High Flight". Nowadays, it seems that TV stations stay on around the clock, showing re-runs and infomercials throughout the night. There is something lost with not having TV lapse into the grey wash of static. There was a small bit of peace in the grey static and white noise, a peace we no longer can touch. Also, I can't imagine being quite so terrified by poltergeists coming from a yogamatics infomercial, as I was when the poltergeists were talking to that little girl through the white noise that sat over the grey static.
180127The Law of Contagion, an element of sympathetic magic, holds that actions taken on blood, hair, and other bodily components will affect the person those things came from. That last part is important; the magic only affects the one the body bits came from. Sympathetic magic is really just a pre-technological form of genetic engineering.
180128When you put up your Christmas tree, and decorate the tree and house, you put on recordings of Christmas carols to set the mood. There's no such music for the other end of the season. There really needs to be a nice set of carols for playing and singing when you take down your Christmas tree and pack up the Christmas decorations.
180129"Santa Claus Is Coming to Town" contains very subtle hints that prove that Santa's secret identity is the director of the NSA. "He's making a list... Gonna find out who's naughty or nice." "He sees you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake. Fort Meade is the real North Pole, so be good or it's straight to Gitmo."
180130I'm getting really tired of people trying to ignore and subvert Science. People have been fighting against evolution and natural selection for well over one hundred years. The Tide Pod Challenge is the latest manifestation of natural selection. People fighting against the Tide Pod Challenge is the latest attack against natural selection, and attempts to stop the challenge are also strikes at the primacy of Science.
180131On TV and movies, a sword will make a nice schwing! sound when drawn from a scabbard, when lifted from a table, when just moving through empty air. My tea thermos makes the same schwing! sound when I lift it out of the cup holder in my car. That makes me feel manly and virile, whenever I take a nice refreshing sip of tea.
180320When doing the kitchen renovation, we spent so much time agonizing over a huge pile of decisions. Do we want this type countertop? Do we want that type flooring? Do we want to knock out the wall between the kitchen and the dining room, or just make it a half-height bar? It seemed like we were wasting an excessive amount of time, all for little effect. Having lived with the completed renovation for a year now, I can look back and say that I am so glad we agonized over all those decisions.
Final Thoughts of the Night -- The Full Story
I started writing these after talking with my wife about the last words one
might say to their loved ones before dying. Rather than leaving to chance the
possibility that I might die in my sleep and maybe having said something dopey
to her -- rather, not having said something dopey to her -- I decided
to ensure that one of the last things I say to her each night is something
Thus, I undertook the "Final Thought of the Night" project. Each night,
shortly before going to sleep, I tell her a Final Thought. These may be
funny, they are likely to be stupid; they may be vaguely story-like; they may
be pseudo-philosophical and intelligent-sounding; they may be almost mythic
from a spur-of-the-moment mythos.
The topics have spanned a wide range of subjects: animals, steampunk, food,
bodily secretions. Anything that pops into mind is fair game. Animals are a
big focus because it's so easy to say something about animals. I hope I'm not
repeating anything, but I am making absolutely no effort to ensure that
repeats don't happen. If you see the same idea multiple times, that might
mean it's something I think about more than other things.
More final thoughts are available here:
- final thoughts from 2011
- final thoughts from 2012
- final thoughts from 2013
- final thoughts from 2014
- final thoughts from 2015
- final thoughts from 2016
- final thoughts from 2017
- final thoughts from 2019
Copyright 2011-2018 by Wayne Morrison. All Rights Reserved.