Final Thoughts of the Night, 2019

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.

January, 2019 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. 190102It's not a contest, unless I'm winning. 190103Leia's slave bikini has been reportedly one of the big role-play sex fetishes for the past 35 years. If Leia, as the original model of that outfit, ever dressed in it for sex role-playing with Han Solo, I wonder what he looked like in a Jabba the Hut costume. 190104Here's an example of my luck. I've got an identical twin brother, but while he is quite handsome everyone says I'm the ugly one. 190104Here's an idea of my luck. I've got an identical twin brother, but while he is quite handsome everyone says I'm the ugly one. 190105When sharks want a happy meal, they cruise down to the Caribbean and eat a tourist. 190106Two of the three kings thought the invite said to bring gag gifts. 190108At times of rest, the engines gather in the great roundhouses in the railyards. The engines talk of runs they've made, distant towns and cities visited, mountains climbed and rivers forded and plains crossed. They talk of shepherding long lines of sheep -- the cars of different shapes, colors, body types -- and worrying for each one the whole long voyage. The cars carrying varying passengers -- people, goods, materials, livestock. Then as the dark nights reach towards morning, they sleep, content in journeys well travelled. 190109It's been 31 years and Jo is still the prime one for me. 190110Comedy and Medicine: Two different fields that both see great value in flatulence. 190111Grapes are the holy grail of fruit cocktail. But cherries -- ah, cherries! -- cherries are the holiest of holies. 190112I was googling the Poison Control Hotline, and one of the top suggestions it gave me was "Poison Control for Dogs". It's been decades since I've had a dog, so maybe I've missed some advances in dog intelligence. Are dogs smart enough now to check Google if they've eaten something poisonous? I didn't know dogs had mastered two-pawed typing, let alone the concept of googling for information. 190113New Teenage Driver: "Dad, I hit a car."
Tragically Unhip Dad: "I don't know whether to be relieved you're okay, congratulate you on becoming a man, or worried about your sexual preferences."
190114In college, my statistics class was really difficult. Fortunately, if I ever needed emergency help with my homework, all I had to do was call the Poisson Control Hotline. 190115Many computer games have a training mode that lets the player go through the game to see how things work, to learn how to operate the controller, and to learn how to perform various actions, all in preparation for the real games. It'd be interesting if life was the training mode, wherein we see how things work and acquire various skills and abilities, and that death is really the transition to our real life. All those skills and all that knowledge we acquired in our "training life" would carry over into our real life. 190116Statistics is the art and science of knowing how many socks must be pulled from a drawer in the dark in order to have a matching pair. Poison is the French word for stinky feet, which is related to socks and the reason why there=E2=80=99s a statistics distribution named for it. 190117At the holidays, Gozer the Gozarian likes nothing better than to throw a Zuul Log on the fire. 190118Folding laundry is an exercise in basic Applied Geometry. However, folding fitted sheets is descending into the depths of non-Euclidean Geometry. 190119America: Land of the Free, Home of the "Here, Hold My Beer" 190120Protestantism is a religion of Light, because it doesn't have Mass. 190121Elementary-school lunches were always a race to see if you could finish your milk before the cardboard straw collapsed. 190122The stages of development of prehistoric Man are known by locations where they are found, such as Peking Man, Java Man, and Cheddar Man. Florida Man is a contemporary, offshoot stage of development of Man. Due to his wild and reckless nature, not to mention the utter lack of foresight, Florida Man will never leave any physical evidence of his existence. 190123Hospitals are very cunning in their use of signs with misspelled words, bad grammar, and poor wording. It isn't going to bother many people, but those it bothers will blow a gasket and need expensive, extensive treatments -- conveniently provided by the hospital. 190124I went on a date yesterday. My wife got mad at me and told me to quit peeing on the fruit.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190125Zombies don't have a problem figuring out what to eat when they're on a diet; it's a no-brainer.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190126I bought a couple of rare, mint-condition coins. I wasted my money because they just taste like metal.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190127Q: What's an organist's favorite type of beer?
A: Bock beerGreat-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week
190128All florists are Bud-ists.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190129Pandora was a white-box tester.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190130There's a country singer who writes songs about killing his own mother, killing his own wife, killing his own hound dog, intentionally wrecking his own truck, and burning flags. His stage name is Darth Brooks.Great-Aunt of Dumb Joke Week 190131For the past six weeks, I've had to struggle to be an adult and boy is it hard! I can't wait until I can go back to being my normal, dopey, adolescent self again.

February, 2019 190201Someday, someone will invent a toilet that has a tiny black hole. Any poop, any urine, anything put down the toilet is going to be sucked into the tiny black hole and it'll disappear. This will eventually extend to general trash handling. This revolutionary, eco-friendly method of handling poop and piss and trash will continue for a number of years. It will finally come to a crashing halt when creatures from the alternate dimension that the black holes lead to will get so fed up with our shit that they'll come back through the black holes and wipe us all out. 190202Waiting to be released from the hospital is like waiting for a late flight to pull back from the airport gate and get in the air. It seems like the wait will never end, and when it does you go soaring like an eagle. 190203The common interpretation is that the Sarlacc is hiding beneath the sand at the bottom of a pit of sand, just waiting to trap the unwary. The common interpretation is wrong. The Sarlacc is hiding beneath the sand because it's embarrassed that it has to wear a cone of shame built of sand. 190204Without much in-depth thought, it seems that the Sun and the Moon move at roughly the same speed. However, the Sun is clearly much faster than the Moon. The Sun goes through all its phases (new sun to full sun to new sun) in a single day, while the Moon takes 28 days to go from new moon to full moon to new moon. 190205The last time I went to the ocean, I tried to take advantage of my nice long hair. I had a friend film me as I tried to do one of those sexy wet-hair fling things where my long, wet hair gets flung back over my head and the water goes cascading out and around me. It didn't quite work out as I hoped. An octopus got wrapped up in my hair, so I ended up flinging the octopus onto my face. It wrapped three tentacles around my head and left the other five dangling off my chin. I then went staggering up on shore, my muffled shrieks seeming to come from the octopus' bulbous head attached to my face. I terrified all the beach people, and almost everyone ran screaming off the beach. Three people tried to shoot me with their spearguns and beach-darts. It wasn't exactly the nice, relaxing day out I'd hoped for. I don't think the beach is for me. Next time, I think I'll go to the mountains. 190206According to the popular quantum-theory example, Schrödinger's Cat is simultaneously alive and dead -- until the moment you actually check on it. At that point, the waveform collapses and the cat is either alive or dead. This is complicated when a researcher tries to weave in the internet's "pics or it didn't happen" meme. Before the camera is checked, the cat is alive, the cat is dead, the cat has been checked upon, the cat has not been checked upon, there are pics, there aren't pics, the camera has been checked, the camera has not been checked, the researcher has had a cheeseburger, and the researcher has not had a cheeseburger, -- all at the same time. 190207Martinis are inherently thixotropic, which is why they must be shaken or stirred. Without that vital agitation, instead of drinking them James Bond would have to slurp up his martinis like jello. 190208I have found a new job. I'll be working at Fermata Labs, investigating the dark rests within the held notes. 190209In Deadpool, Deadpool cuts his hand off to escape from Colossus. All's well, though, because he just grows a new hand. How did the hand know not to grow a new Deadpool? Is there a second Deadpool running around out there? 190210Snowshoeing is a good metaphor for progress, for a number of reasons. Even if it's difficult, it's better to keep moving forward and it's painful to move backwards. If you're careless, it's easy to trod on your own feet and send yourself sprawling. You only get anywhere when you put in some effort. 190211Early Man had no concept of personal ambition. Nature remedied this by evolving Early Man to have a sense of smell. Around about dinner time, smell-enhanced Early Man took a good long sniff and thought, "Dang! Tina's having pizza for dinner! She never shares pizza. If I'm gonna get pizza, I'm going to have to trap a pizza-delivery guy of my own, like she did." Bam! Ambition was born. 190212The fangs of Summer's heat are hiding in the dazzle of Winter's noonshine, a shining threat that the Tigers of the Sun will soon be chasing away the Bears of Dusk.Seasons of Bears and Tigers 190213There's a saying that if all you have is a hammer then everything looks like a nail. I think that only takes things halfway. To me, the full thought is along the lines of the glass half-full/glass half-empty contrast. If you're an optimist and all you have is a hammer, then everything looks like a nail. However, if you're a pessimist and all you have is a hammer, then everything looks like a barrel of pickles. 190214I just read a confusing statistic that left me with a bunch of questions. It said that I am 6 times more likely to die at the hands of a pig than a shark. First off, I want to know why pigs dislike me so much. I also want to know if that's saying that pigs hate me more than sharks hate me or if pigs hate me more than they hate sharks. And "at the hands of"? What kind of weird-ass mutant pigs and sharks are there? 190215If I'm ever in charge of a secret government organization investigating a paranormal incident, I'm going to bypass a bunch of wasted time and look immediately at the children involved. TV has taught me that children are always at the center of supernatural incidents and conspiracies. 190216If astrophysicists could visualize the right number of dimensions, they would find that space and the distribution of black holes map very nicely onto a roll of #3 bubble wrap. 190217I read a listicle talking about how seemingly innocuous things are much more deadly than things I'm scared of. Spiders? Snakes? Sharks? They're amateurs. The real worries are pigs, pen caps, champagne corks, deer, coconuts, and vending machines. Those things are bloodthirsty killers! 190218An ancient philosophy is that the enemy of my enemy is my friend. A more cunning, pragmatic twist to this is that the enemy of my enemy is my cannon fodder. 190219Church choirs almost always sing an anthem immediately before the sermon. The anthem can really be anywhere during the service, but it's usually right before the sermon. This developed as a matter of practicality, since the choir thus musically jolts the congregation so they'll be awake for the sermon. 190220There is always a shortage of blood and organs for transplant. The government should influence people to become organ donors by giving free funerals to organ donors. Similarly, people should be given tax credits for every blood donation they make. 190221Wifi has made so many things more convenient than they used to be. I really wish Jo had been able to get a modern antibiotic pump to deliver her antibiotics over Wifi. It would have made the past month so much easier than it has been. 190222I think state and local governments should start mixing public services with other businesses. This would give us police who also deliver mail and packages, fire trucks that are also public transport, speed cameras that provide selfies to their victims, ambulances that also do pizza delivery. This would provide good public relations and exposure to public services, and it would favorably embed the public services in the community. People would be happy and excited to see police cars and fire trucks rolling up to their homes. 190223When I was filling out the paperwork for college graduation, I came to the part that required me to select whether I wanted to get a BS or a BA degree. I was very tempted to check the BA degree because I thought it would be cool and very funny to have a BA in Computer Science, rather than a BS. The more I thought about it, the more I wanted a BA-CS. There's a lot of artistry, creativity, and imagination required in Computer Science, possibly as much as the science that's required. Not to mention that it would be funny. I really was drawn quite strongly to the thought of a BA-CS. Ultimately, I decided to go for the standard BS-CS because I thought it would cause less trouble in the future and not negatively affect my career. It was the boring choice, but at the time it was probably for the best. These days, however, it probably wouldn't be such a bad idea. 190224The Hammond Organ was invented in the 1930's. It entered the mainstream of rock in 1967 -- the Summer of Love -- when someone observed that if there were pipe organs there should also be bong organs. 190225Cooking is chemistry where you're expected to eat the results, and they're seldom going to kill you. 190226When you eat the giant M&Ms, like they use in their adverts, are you supposed to also eat the arms and legs, or do you just throw them away? 190227I am collecting all the stuff I want to be buried with. The clothes, the jewelry, lots of gems and precious metals, everything. Among all this, I want a really impressive crown and a powerful-looking scepter. Maybe even a really spiffy sword. I want future archeologists to find my vault of treasures and then do a bunch of research to determine why this presumably run-of-the-mill corpse has all these treasures he's buried with. I'm hoping to be the subject of any number of PhD theses. 190228Using the language of food, an open-casket funeral is an open-face funeral.

March, 2019 190301The problem with doing laundry in the evening is that pillowcases get all snuggly warm, instead of the rich, decadent, arctic chill that makes pillowcases such a delight. 190302When Jo was in the hospital, I spent several weeks travelling back and forth between home and hospital a couple times a day. There were several songs that I really got set on for those trips, one at a time. I listened to that one song exclusively for a few days before moving on to another song. At one point, one of those songs was Guy Davis' "Wish I Hadn't Stayed Away". That was in late December, and I was subconsciously starting to realize that Jo was in significantly worse shape than we had been told. Somehow, my music tastes were trying to tell me to stop worrying about stupid stuff and get my ass back to the hospital. 190303Today's scripture in church was the Transfiguration of Christ, and it included this, "His face shining as the sun, and His garments became white as the light." As that was read, I thought, "Just like Gandalf!" I am doomed. 190304There is only one possible explanation for why the meteor killed the dinosaurs and left everything else alone. Dinosaurs were from Krypton and the meteor that killed them was made of kryptonite. 190305I have decided to become a stage magician, albeit a specialized one. I'll wave my magic wand, say the magic words, "=C3=80 La Mentary Canal", and in a poop of smoke, random shit will appear. 190306I read that the Hapalopilus nidulans mushroom "causes liver failure, kidney failure, and turns the urine dark purple." I really love that description. As if liver failure wasn't bad enough, as if kidney failure wasn't bad enough, eating this mushroom will TURN YOUR PEE PURPLE!!! 190307In any solar system, there should be a known point when the system's star becomes (roughly) indistinguishable from any other star. This point could be called the Point of Solar Hosery. 190308There is one sub-species of African Elephant that likes to hide behind a tree on the savannahs and leap out to startle and scare passing zebras. This trickster pachyderm is the Elephant of Surprise. 190309The chuffedfinch is the happiest birds around.Bird Week 1 190310Emperor penguins are the only penguins that do not build a nest. Instead, Emperor penguins have a bunch of peasant penguins build nests for them.Bird Week 1 190311Hawks can never seem to clear the phlegm out of their throats.Bird Week 1 190312Barn Owls are hardworking, humble, industrious, kind, and friendly. Their only major flaw is their intense jealousy towards their well-to-do cousins, the Mansion Owls and the Palace Owls.Bird Week 1 190313Hummingbirds can carry a tune, they just can't remember the words.Bird Week 1 190314Bloopbirds make the most mistakes of avians.Bird Week 1 190315The fossil record shows that the earliest ancestors of penguins lived around 60 million years ago. This means that the earliest penguins lived with dinosaurs. Having watched all the Jurassic Park movies multiple times, it is clear to me that those earliest penguins must have been amazingly bad-ass birds in order to survive against all those ultra-violent murder-lizards.Bird Week 1 190316The phrase "In the nick of time" indicates that there's a razor or knife so sharp that time itself can be shaved and injured. I would very much like to see this blade, as well as the styptic powder, bandages, and other things used to heal these time cuts. 190317There's a picture of a sign that's been making the rounds on the internet. It's an English street sign pointing to the Tank Museum and Monkey World nearby. Lots of people have said that putting those two places so close together was a mistake that's just asking for trouble. In my opinion, that placing was done intentionally. I bet the tanks at Tank Museum are fully functional, and they're kept ready and waiting to save the world for when the monkey apocalypse erupts at Monkey World. 190318The "Close Door" buttons on elevators are quite often configured to be placebos -- people push them to feel better, but the buttons do nothing. I hate those ineffectual buttons and would rather not have them at all than to have ones that sit there mocking me as I jab them. I have a fantasy. I dream that the inventor of the fake "Close Door" is being chased by a killer monster robot and he jumps in an elevator to escape, he pokes and pokes and pokes at the "Close Door" button to no avail, and the killer monster robot is able to corner him on the elevator, and the killer monster robot's jaws and eyes are dripping with saliva and anticipation, and only then do the doors close behind them. 190319I know nothing about the play "Death of a Salesman", but it sounds like it's the story of a travelling salesman who goes to the home of a murderering cannibal. 190320Ape-hanger handlebars for motorcycles were developed to accomodate T-Rex bikers. 190321When you bring something out to the birds' room, occasionally they'll look curiously at this new and interesting thing. More often, though, they'll be indifferent to anything we bring out. If the birds notice the new thing, they'll glance at it and then go back to whatever they were doing in the first place. I wonder how often that happens with us and aliens of vastly superior intelligence. They come to Earth and they've got teleportation gum and disease-healing pizza toppings and Faster-Than-Light puppy sleighs and 3D printer-basters and toaster poodles. All we see are cardboard boxes and gentle lights and cat videos. We blithely go our happy way, with these incredible wonders all around us. 190322Scepters must never be washed; they bear the weight of their ages and history. On the other hand, sifters and snifters should be washed after each use. 190323Whenever I hear about Willie Loman from "Death of a Salesman", I think it should really be about Willie Lomax, a salesman who travels around the Appalachians selling vacuums and collecting folksongs. 190324I have decided that my official cause of death will be that while rescuing a box of orphaned puppies, a Great White Shark came along and bit me in half. I don't care how I really die, that's going to be the official cause of death. Unless the real reason is even cooler. 190325Crushed red pepper flakes are jimmies for pizza.Food Week 15 190326In the summer of 2015, it was reported that archeologists found the remains of 14,400 year-old flatbread at a dig in northeastern Jordan. This is an important find for a variety of reasons. Most importantly, it shows that soon after early humans learned to make bread, they realized the bread would be even better if it was toast. If the archeologists keep digging, I bet they'll find signs of butter and jam, maybe even peanut butter.Food Week 15 190327The more yummy stuff you put in your omelet the easier it is to forget that an omelet is basically just scrambled eggs.Food Week 15 190328Grape jelly is the default jelly for PBJs. This was a slick, covert marketing move by the Wine Establishment to get people pointed towards wine at an early age.Food Week 15 190329Even if they don't want to admit it, everyone knows that fat is delicious and that the more fat a food has the better it tastes. It's interesting, then, that food comes in regular-fat, low-fat, and fat-free versions, but never in extra-fat versions. Perhaps food companies are being sneaky and regular-fat is really extra-fat, low-fat is really regular-fat, and fat-free is, um, fat-free.Food Week 15 190331The entire pie-chart subfield of mathematics developed as a means of best calculating the cutting and distribution of pizza.Food Week 15 190331Turkey is the nutritional penance we pay for all the delicious food it's served with.Food Week 15

April, 2019 190401On Buffy the Vampire Slayer, vampires avoided going out on Halloween night as it was too tacky. I expect that Tricksters agree with me that April Fool's Day is for amateurs and don't get involved with all that oh-so-wonderful April Fools hilarity and humor. 190402Saying "I have no one to blame but myself" is a sign of laziness and a distinct lack of ambition. 190403Court-based TV shows often show lawyers saying something in court that is immediately squashed by the judge or withdrawn by the lawyer. The sole purpose of these comments is to manipulate the jury, to insinuate disallowed information or thoughts in order to get the jury thinking about things that for whatever reason, they shouldn't be considering. I assume this is done in real courts, not just on TV. Speaking of TV, so-called live TV broadcasts have time delays to prevent Bad Language from being broadcast to protect children from language they themselves use when their parents aren't around. I think that it's long past overdue for trials to have a built-in time delay between what lawyers say and what juries hear. This would help keep the lawyers from manipulating and deceiving juries in situations that are far more fraught and with far greater consequences than protecting the tender little ears of children. 190404I like almost all owls, and am happy to have just about any of them come visit. There's only one owl I don't like and won't let in the house. That one is barred. 190405I've got a great idea for a product. This is a refinement on shoes. Shoes should start smelling worse and worse as they get older and more worn and dangerous to wear. Not just smelling on the inside until you shove your feet in, but smelling on the outside so you're walking around in a cloud of stench. No amount of washing would remove the smell. This would encourage you to replace your shoes when needed and keep your feet healthy and happy. 190406Africa is said to be the cradle of civilization; people started out in Africa and migrated outwards around the planet. Things are a little more complex than that. Africa is the cradle of music, which provided the seeds of civilization. As music spread outwards from Africa, civilization followed wherever music led. 190407If you get a second opinion for a medical diagnosis you don't want to hear, shouldn't you also get a second opinion for a diagnosis you do want to hear? 190408Doctors and hospitals have supported literature for quite a long time. They both provide reading salons (euphemistically called "waiting rooms") in which people can sit and read while waiting to see a doctor or for an operation to complete. They also have firm schedules for patients but let things slip on their own end, forcing people to sit around for potentially long periods of time. This gives people lots of time to fill, time that they can then use to read to their heart's content. Time they otherwise wouldn't have spent reading. All thanks to the medical establishment. 190409The artists I know are also engineers. Not only do they create art, but they have to build things to hold or display art, they have to optimize the medium for space with what they want to show, they have to accomodate the structural integrity of their art. Similarly, engineers I know are concerned with artistry in their work. They are concerned not just with solving problems, but with elegance in their work, how well their code fits together, the beauty of the solution as a whole. As artists are engineers, so too are engineers artists. 190410Aside from tarts, can you expect to wield supreme executive power if a sword was thrown at you by a watery cake? 190411The biggest, most powerful things anywhere are nutshells. They can hold anything and everything -- physical, metaphorical, or fantastical -- and they can hold as much as you want them to. Think about how nutshells are used. "In a nutshell, a gam of whales is..." "In a nutshell, the college experience is..." "In a nutshell, a truckload of sparkly rainbow unicorn poop can..." "In a nutshell, the whole universe, including that amazing new black hole, is..." If a single nutshell can hold the universe, then in a nutshell it's clearly more powerful than Superman, gravity, and garlic, combined. 190412As so many do, I play the Lava Floor game with my friends. I'm pretty good at jumping from chair to couch to table so I don't often die from stepping on the Lava Floor. I bet bugs play Lava Lamp. "No, don't land on that lamp, it's LAVA!". "Oooh, it's so hot! I'm gonna burn up!" 190413I'd like to hear the priest from Princess Bride recite the words to Worthy Is the Lamb. 190414When clothes or furniture or something makes a farty noise, most people will force it to make the sound a second time just to prove the clothes or furniture made the sound and they are in control of their bodily noises. And they'll look embarassed the whole time. That's the wrong way to handle the issue. Embrace the farty noise! Make the clothes or furniture or something make the farty noise a bunch more times, and put a big grin on your face while doing it. People will either focus on you having a juvenile sense of humor or they'll laugh along with you. That then opens a small window of opportunity for you to slip a real fart in there for fun and intestinal relief. 190415The Rainbow Connection sounds like a movie about illegal fairydust smuggling. 190416During college I was so poor I didn't have fight-or-flight reflexes, I had fight-or-hitchhike reflexes. 190417When I die, you should bury me in a speedo, rather than my kilt or a suit, so the good clothes won't be wasted. Obviously, this means I would have to have a closed casket funeral. 190418Dental hygienists know when you only floss for a couple days right before your appointment. They call it faux-lossing. 190419Life with me presents you with an endless series of dilemmas. I start to do stuff that would be both funny and bad if I actually complete the actions. Do you stop me or do you sit back and watch? Stopping me implies I'm stupid and need to be controlled. Sitting back and watching gives you a good laugh, while leaving me without functioning shoes, or with a knife wedged in my computer, or me holding angry raccoons. I don't mean to make your life so hard. 190420If you want to see trends in online money transfers, you need to turn to set theory and look at Venmo diagrams. 190421Security is an illusion; network security doubly so. 190422I'd like a camera filter that renders people and animals and things as the initial rough shapes used in drawing. 190423I used to play in a band called Julia and the Mandel Bros. Our music was very complex, and people thought we had great sets. 190424Red foxes, regardless of their speed, are jealous of all the attention quick brown foxes receive. 190425Hannibal Lecter's Sue chef is also his Betty chef, and his Peter chef, and his Charles chef, and his Terry chef... 190426I want to start a business taking people on safari around wildlife preserves. The people would sit in the back of a pickup truck on these safaris. To keep them safe from the animals (and vice versa) there would be caging all around the people. They would be provided with beer, sodas, and snacks. The people would sit on really comfortable sofas, which is why the business would be called Sofari. 190427Produce has a quality it shares with styrofoam -- they are both made for shipping, not for taste. 190428Men will explain things to anyone, not just women. Mansplaining isn't an act of sexism, it's an act of dominance. 190429Every night before going to sleep, I let out a big, deep sigh. You ask me about it, wondering if something's bothering me. I think this big sigh releasses tensions and worries from the day, effectively clearing my mental deck and setting the stage for a good sleep. (It also assists with mixing metaphors, apparently.) 190430It has long been thought that Homo Sapiens' larger brain helped them replace Neanderthals, as evidenced by the distinct lack of Neanderthals in the modern world. I am thinking that this is less a result of higher intelligence than it is the mental capacities that led to the modern development of the Florida Man and "Here, Hold My Beer" cultures. Homo Sapiens were quite willing to engage in insane behaviors that Neanderthals weren't willing to do. Such lunatic behaviors allowed Homo Sapiens to overwhelm and replace Neanderthals, despite the associated injury and mortality rates.

May, 2019 190501Birds are the unsung heroes of the power and phone industries. They can sense when power and phone calls are having trouble flowing through the wires. The birds will come and sit on the blocked lines and they'll squeeze the lines with their feet, massaging them until the problems disappear and things are flowing normally again. 190502Q: How do you know Thanos was from Scotland?
A: He knows the importance of a good snap.
190503The pineapple plant is an alchemist that transmutes gossamer rays of sunlight gold into dense edible orbs of sunsweet gold. 190504Naps aren't as satisfying if you don't know you're taking one when you take it. 190505I think it would be a great idea for bedspreads to be equipped with pockets. 190506I'm glad that vending machines are now taking credit cards and bills. When they only took coins, it seemed you always needed more coins than the actual item price because the machines never registered the first coin inserted and always took it as a sacrificial offering. 190507The collective noun for cardiologists should be murmuration -- a murmuration of cardiologists. 190508I never enjoy sessions. I'm always ready to join in with my gutteral-scatting, but no one ever wants to hear me sing. 190509I am really confused by my master's degree. I studied for several years and got a Master of Divinity, but not once did I learn how to make fudge. 190510Tolerance and cooperation are not Squirrel Virtues. 190511People like to think of Science Fiction as a genre of dreams and aspirations, ideals we can strive and struggle for, technology we can work to implement, new horizons to sail towards. In reality, it's a genre that pisses people off because they take it as a field of promises that will soon be fulfilled. People want their flying cars, their medical tricorders, their FTL drives, their universal translators now, dagnabbit! They don't want them 40 years from now! 190512It is always best to treat double-flats as printer errors. 190513People are so confusing. First they complain about filthy lucre, then they complain about money laundering. Why can't they make up their minds? 190514DS and DC al segno provide subroutines to music. 190515For vultures, every meal is a picnic. 190516Pronouns are linguistic variables, holding temporary values that are context dependent and can be assigned as needed. 190517It is a well-known fact that feet are our nighttime thermostats, keeping our body temperature nicely regulated by migrating in and out of the covers. What is much less known is that this heat-based migration isn't controlled by the enormous brain in our heads. Rather, it's controlled by heat-activated proto-brains located in our thumb-toes. This works for sleeping, but we must hope those proto-brains never evolve into much more capable, sentient true brains. 190518When the country was founded, a presidential seal was created in order to give legitimacy and respectability to the position. According to the Constitution, if the president ever starts doing illegal things, the seal is empowered to use his flippers to slap the president silly. 190519Jo always looks so calm and placid when accompanying the choir and giving us our notes. She's got a good resting pitch face. 190520Butterflies are the tumbleweeds of the animal world. 190521Killer whales got a bum rap when they were named. Sure, there were those 3 -- maybe 4, maybe 5 -- seals, surely a few seals shouldn't be held against them all. 190522My alarm clock has been whacking on that one marimba note for years. After all this time, I wonder if it's still in tune or if it's begun to warp or anything. Maybe I need to replace my marimba. 190523It is not easy to play air concertina. The buttons move around at will, and the bellows is both nonresponsive and omniresponsive. 190524They say that numbers and math are sufficient for describing the physical world. Greek letters are needed when calculations are required to describe the mental, inner world. Tengwar is used when calculations are needed to describe the metaphysical world. 190525There has been a great deal of frustration over the length of time it's taken GRRRRRRRR Martin to finish the last two books of the Game of Thrones series. There's been speculation that he's abandoned the books, given the success of the TV series. I wonder if it's related, but actually a bit different. Perhaps Martin looked at the series as the beta test for the story. Perhaps he has postponed finishing the books to see how the TV audience reacted to the final outcome of the series. If people liked it, he'd continue on in that general direction. If people hated it, he still has two books in which he can adjust the course of the story and finish in a way that makes people happier with the books than the TV series.Literature Week 6 190526As I was reading the first "Mortal Engines" book, I kept thinking about the game mechanics and features for a city-eat-city game. I think that was kind of missing the point of the book.Literature Week 6 190527Jon Snow licked the Wall on a double-direwolf dare and got his tongue stuck to it.Literature Week 6 190528Mount Doom, Mountain Dew. Either would have worked to destroy The Ring.Literature Week 6 190529The Westeros Milk Board advertises their products with the "GOT Milk?" campaign.Literature Week 6 190530Denethor, despite being Steward of Gondor, should have been arrested by the city guards. It was extremely ill-advised of him to start bonfires within the walls of Minas Tirith while they were under siege.Literature Week 6 190531Godot must have been a service tech for a cable company.Literature Week 6

June, 2019 190601Q: Who was the chickens' favorite president?
A: Brrrack-bock-bock Obama.Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week
190602Did you hear about the Christian comedian? His theme song was "Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus".Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week 190603Q: Why did Leonard Bernstein go to Washington, DC?
A: He had to remove a mass and there was an opening.Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week
190604Bodhran players are the best tippers.Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week 190605Barbie and Ken should start a heavy metal group called Mattelica.Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week 190606Q: Who are a chicken's three favorite composers?
A:Bach, Bach, Bach!Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week
190607Q: Where do ghosts do their courting in the spring-time?
A: In the gazeboo.Twa Sisters of Dumb Joke Week
190608It is humbling being a visitor in the hospital. As nice as the nursing staff is, they only want to know if Jo has pooped, never if I have pooped. 190609Thrombus sounds like a pulsating parallelogram. 190610Someone missed a really great opportunity. The hospital folks are always trying to keep track of patients' blood-oxygen levels. The monitors always list this as SPO2. The medical folks call it Blood Ox. Blood Ox is definitely better than SPO2, but the best would have been to call it SPOX. 190611Hospital rooms have beds and bathrooms and cable TV and internet service and room service and housekeeping service and medication service and people who can take your organs from you. Hospitals are just like hotels, except the rooms never have locks on the doors and there's a slight difference in price. 190612Runners spend weeks, months, training for a single marathon. They put in lots and lots of hard, rigorous effort getting their bodies and minds in proper condition for the arduous race. Runners have nothing on nurses. Nurses walk a half-marathon, if not a full marathon, every day. Sure, they're walking and not running, but it's an every-day event, all while juggling the responsibilities of keeping their patients alive. 190613When IV bags are delivered to hospital patients, the patient should have a chance to sample the vintage, evaluate it by smell and taste, select a newer or older vintage, and choose a different vintner. IV bags are serious business and must be given their due consideration. 190614There's a stock character used in a lot of movies and TV shows. When someone is seriously sick in bed or in hospital, there's a woman, a caretaker, that bustles around doing unnecessary tasks and engaging in inane small talk with the unconscious patient, visitors, or anyone who comes in. I have long held a great dislike for this caretaker, and wondered how on earth someone could be so stupid and make such fatuous and vapid conversations. Then I was put in the position of caring for someone who was incapable of communication. Good heavens, have I been unfair and unkind to these stock caretakers. These caretakers have a very difficult job -- they have to talk to the patient as if they can follow the conversation, because maybe they can; they have to try to provide interesting conversation, in hopes of not boring patients that can listen; they have to keep track of the patient's needs and medical care, since every patient needs an advocate; they have to maintain a positive demeanor, since a negative outlook can affect the patient. Swirling around all this is the turmoil and agony of the caretakers' own emotions and needs, and how they can keep up this facade when they are living their entire days at the breaking point and are having to take each minute as it comes, hoping to be able to maintain their fragile grip on control and composure. No more will I have contempt for these ostensibly vacuous caretakers; they are truly people of tremendous strength and courage. 190615Our new dishwasher has individual slots for each piece of silverware to be washed. You put the utensils in and they all spoon together nicely. Sometimes one of the utensils gets flipped around and the spooning stops. That's when the silverware sex begins. 190616Whenever I walk past the fish counter in the grocery store, I wonder about those fish. They're lying there quietly. They've got these deep, contemplative looks on their faces. I wonder what those fish are thinking about. 190617I learned that cows kill an average of 22 people per year, while sharks only kill an average of five people. If this is per cow, then to hell with the vegetarians, I'm eating more hamburgers! 190618Theoretically, a pillow defines a person's territory in bed. The column defined by the placement of the pillow is the sovereign territory of the person whose pillow it is. Theoretically. However, theory falls swiftly to the wayside when the heads hit the pillows. 190619Social media on the internet is good for providing the socially inept with assistance for knowing what to say at certain times. 190620A lot of AM radio seems to be devoted to sports stations. Similarly, a lot of the very high-end FM radio stations are religious stations. It'd be interesting if aliens were listening to only AM radio or only high FM radio and concluded that Earth culture was entirely based on sports or religion. It would make for some really interesting first encounters. 190621Prescription drugs are going to cause a revolution in language. Before long, the drug companies will run out of random letters and syllables to string together for drug names, and they'll have to invent new letters so they can keep having new drug names. 190622I get tired of people asking what's real. If it has a decimal point, it's real. If it has an i, it's imaginary. Otherwise, it's an integer. 190623Veterinarians really should have been called dogtors. 190624I glanced at the cover of an issue of Guideposts and it listed the title of an article about visualization. Since it was a glance, I didn't see the title clearly and read it as "Making the Power of Valhalla Work for You." That got me wondering about the articles that would be in a similar magazine focussed on Valhalla and the old Norse world.
"Decorating with Mistletoe - Baldr's Holiday Tips"
"4? 8? 12? How Many Legs Are Enough for a Horse?"
"Hammers and Horns: What I learned from my camping trip with Thor and Heimdal"
"How Do You Like Them Apples?: 10 Super-Chefs provide their recipes fresh from Iđunna's garden
190625I am curious to know what happened to Thanos' invading horde at the end of Infinity War. When he SNAP'd, did his sense of loyalty send them all to their respective homes? Did his neutral pragmatism include any of the horde as part of the 50% of the dusted? Did he dust them all, since they were essentially creatures out of place? Did he leave them alive, but left on Earth? That would have been a nightmare for the Avengers, as the horde tried to carve out settlements for themselves. So many questions left unanswered...Comic-book Week 3 190626They're already talking about remaking the movies of the Avengers Infinity War saga,but this time it'll be for young children. The big villain will be Thanos the Tank Engine.Comic-book Week 3 190627According to the movie, Captain Marvel's power and the power core had the Tesseract as the source of their power. This is all well and good, up until the moment when Thanos destroyed the Infinity Stones in Avengers: Endgame. It seems that should have caused Captain Marvel's powers to go away.Comic-book Week 3 190628After completing the Infinity Gauntlet, Thanos had the power to change reality to fit his desires. He did so by removing half the sentient life from existence, saving the universe by reducing the consumers of resources; then he settled down on a farm in the hills. I expect Thanos would make a few other tweaks to reality, just to get things the way he really wants them. What happened to the Gauntlet then? Thanos has to protect it, lest someone else use it to undo his grand plan to save the universe. But he's already accomplished his primary goal. At that point, I think Thanos would end up using the Gauntlet to make dinner. "I really fancy a curry from Ishka's tonight, but do I want to go all the way to Arcturus IV? If I'm getting a curry, then I also want some Turrelian samosas and a few pints of Benbow's lager, but they're way over on the other side of the galaxy. I wanted to stay in tonight. Where's the Gauntlet, where's the Gauntlet, where's the Gauntlet... Ah, there you are. Gauntlet, gimme a couple of curries, six samosas, and three firkins of lager."Comic-book Week 3 190629The Spanish word for danger or hazard is peligro. That word sounds like the word pelican. This brings to mind a wonderful image of Danger Pelican, who is a mighty superhero with a huge mouth for scooping up evildoers and bringing them to justice.Comic-book Week 3 190630It seems like every superhero, regardless of their actual superpower, has the low-key, instinctive super-ability to keep their uniform wrinkle-free and unbunchy. If the uniform does get damaged, then it's always in an appealingly disheveled way.Comic-book Week 3

July, 2019 190701Superheroes and supervillains always have really impressive costumes. The basic design, the colors, the frills, the add-ons, individual weapons or tools. Anyone can make a superhero costume, but I bet there's one tailor somewhere that handles making all the great costumes. There are a lot of skills required -- sewing, design, construction, weapon building, and armor construction are the obvious, tangible skills. The intangible skills are much harder to quantify -- style, panache, pizzazz, verve, and matching the costume design to the superpower. These intangibles can make or break the superhero or supervillain, so undoubtedly the greatest of the great always go to that one tailor. Supertailor.Comic-book Week 3 190702Krispy Kreme donuts are so good that they could probably make a kale-flavored donut that wouldn't be horrible.Food Week 16 190703I found a cashew in the side sink. Y'know, the second one, the sink we never use. My first was thought was, "Cashew, score!" I tried to picked it up and it stuck to the sink. My second thought was, "Yuk, food stuck to the second sink! I'm not eating this! Why doesn't Jo clean this sink more often?"Food Week 16 190704For centuries, tea was drunk black, the way physics, nature, and God intended. When we realized we were drinking boiled leaf sauce, we started adding sugar. When we realized that refrigeration could help us from scalding our tongues, we started adding milk. Eventually, some genius realized that adding lemon made a nice counterpoint to the astringency of tea. The Summer of Love brought us a new era of adding green things to our tea -- limes and mint leaves were among the common greens added. In the 80's, another genius thought that adding strawberries to our boiled leaf sauce would be good. What next, bananas? cucumbers? Açai, flax, hemp, and cilantro are all the rage now. Why not ruin our boiled leaf sauce with them?Food Week 16 190705In the interests of full disclosure, chocolate chip cookies should be displayed and served upside down.Food Week 16 190706Mayo, like duct tape and the Force, binds the universe together. Unlike duct tape and the Force, both of which have a light side and a dark side, mayo only has a light side.Food Week 16 190707Why did people decide to put mint leaves in tea? As if we don't have enough boiled leaves in our tea, now we're adding mint leaves? And the mint leaves are always added after the tea has been prepared. Why not add them right when the water is boiling? Why mint? Why not oak, or spruce, or pine, or maple, or ivy? So many leaves to try, so many horrible new cups of tea to invent.Food Week 16 190708It is widely thought that people only use 10% of the brain. I hate wasteful cooks like that.Food Week 16 190709The eyes of the world turned to the Potato People when they entered the Space Age by launching their first rocket, Spudnik 1. 190710Jo woke me up in the middle of the night by firmly pressing in the middle of my back. When I asked why she did that, she said that she wanted to make sure I was still alive. There are several problems here. First, and least insidious, why did she need to verify this? What happened that raised this question? Had I done something that made her question if I was alive? Had she done something that made her question if I was alive? Had she done something that made her question if I was dead yet? This back-pressing was so firm, steady, and authoritative that I'm wondering if this is really the first time this has happened. It kinda seemed like she had just performed a power-on reset for me. Am I a cyborg or a robot? I don't feel incredibly superior to my old self (but would I really know?) so I'm disinclined to think I'm a robot. How screwed up had I become such that she needed to reboot me? Does cyborg-me need to be rebooted often? Did she have an unbent paper clip in her hand? Am I now back to my factory-reset condition? I feel like my mangy, decrepit old self, so I kinda think not. I don't know what's real anymore. Did I ever know? Is that why I had to be rebooted last night? 190711It's interesting to watch a bluegrass finale jam from the balcony. The musicians move hither and yon, seemingly at random, as various players shift forward to solo then shift back to rejoin the cloud. I'm certain it fits the principles of Brownian motion of fas particles. 190712Dumb, ignorant friends: everyone needs one. If you don't have one, you must be one. 190713For years I've heard that many, many house fires are started by people leaving dryer lint in the dryer. As a result of this indoctrination, I am now deathly afraid of leaving home without cleaning the lint trap lest the house catch fire and burn down. 190714Our current rudimentary medical implants are the first stages in a secret plan that will ultimately convert the population into cyborgs. 190715By the American stereotype, the English gentleman walks around with a bowler hat and an umbrella. I was wondering what purpose the hat served, since the umbrella is used to poke people and keep rain off his head. With an umbrella handy, there doesn't seem to be any real necessity for the hat, other than to keep the hair tidy. It follows then that the whole purpose of wearing a hat is to keep one's hair tidy -- but if one is an English gentleman. 190716Vapers look like they're playing kazoos. The world would be a cheerier, happier place if vapers played kazoos instead of vaping. 190717For many years I had trouble remembering the difference between Burl Ives and Charles Ives. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer would have been rather different if it had been done by Charles Ives. Can you imagine how weird our generation would have grown up if Charles Ives had done Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer? 1907182D art is drawing and painting. 3D art, adds depth, and is sculpture. 4D art adds an element of time, and is cake. As time passes, the cake gets eaten and changes form and representation. Since it ultimately goes away, cake also represents the temporal and impermanent aspect of life and being. 190719I am constitutionally incapable of being a celebrity. Whenever someone points a camera at me, I can't ignore it. I have to either make a goofy face at it or I scowl at it as I think, "What the hell do you want?" There's no way anyone wants a celebrity to be doing either of those. 190720Glazing, biscuit, grog, dipping, bisque... Pottery is the most delicious of all arts. 190721Our society is doomed. In a few years, we're going to discover that Purell is highly carcinogenic when all our medical personnel start dying off. The rest of society will all die shortly after because all our medical folks are suddenly gone. 190722Ebooks are convenient for reading, but they are also a powerful visual metaphor. During power outages, ebooks provide illumination in the darkest night. 190723No one knows where Waldo is. No one knows where Carmen Sandiego is. They both wear red hats. Has anyone ever seen them together? I have a sneaking suspicion that they are one and the same person. 190724I think that Mrs. Muir from "The Ghost and Mrs. Muir" was the wife of John Muir. She secretly moved to the seaside cottage in hopes of never seeing her husband John again, because she got so tired of tromping around the wilderness. 190725Street cleaners are the Zambonis of Tarmac.
("Zambonis of Tarmac" would be a great band name.)
190726As the sole member of our own individual species, each of us lives our lives in fear of our own personal extinction. 190727You know beef tastes good because all cow vocalizations are long yummy noises. 190728Many sources and novelizations portray Thor as an idiot. A powerful warrior-idiot, but an idiot nonetheless. This is often from Loki's point of view, and it seems to stem from Loki's derision at Thor trusting Loki. I dislike this attitude and would much rather have a trusting, honorable Thor than an untrustworthy, manipulative Thor. 190729Quaddies would be excellent on a ninja obstacle course.
Ed. note: This is referring to the Quaddies from the Vorkosigan Saga.
190730Mjöllnir is an Asgardian boomerang, which is why Chris Hemsworth was chosen to play Thor. 190731Winter's cold lurks in the shadow of Summer's heat, a quiet promise that the oven blast will be replaced by the cool enfolding embrace.Seasons of Bears and Tigers

August, 2019 190801I was last-year year's old when I got sick and tired of the "I was today years old" meme intro. 190802Several people have told me they don't eat vegetables because veggies are food for food that carnivores eat, and they are themselves carnivores. I have always thought these people were just being cute in trying to say they wanted a hamburger. After thinking about this a bit, I realized that it wasn't an attempt at cuteness. Rather, these people fear that eating vegetables would cause a fundamental shift in the universe with the result that they'd be converted into food, and carnivores would be pointed at them. 190803For my whole life, I have taken the path of nonviolence. I have avoided fights such that I have never been in a fight. I do not regret choosing this path at all, and I would follow it again. However, it's been more than 50 years and I am still waiting to receive the power of flight. 190804At Jerry's funeral, his many ministerial jobs were mentioned during his eulogy. Among others, there were mentions of campus pastor, pastor of music, youth pastor. However, half the time Father John's pronunciation of "pastor" sounded more like he was saying "bastard", leading to campus bastard, bastard of music, and youth bastard. I think that Jerry would have been quite amused by this. 190805"No Parking Hare" is a Bugs Bunny cartoon wherein Bugs' rabbit hole is in the way of construction on a new soaring expressway. The cartoon consists of Bugs trying to reasonably explain to the construction foreman why it'd be best to leave his rabbit hole alone. The beginning and end of the cartoon shows lots of highways soaring over the landscape. That soaring expressway is what I envisioned as a kid whenever I sang This Land Is Your Land and got to the lines "As I went walking that ribbon of highway; I saw above me that endless skyway." 190806When Yondu first brought Peter Quill on his ship, Quill plugged his Walkman into the ship's sound system to entertain the crew. Things went well until Steve Miller Band's "Jungle Love" came on, and Yondu's arrow accidentally killed half the crew. That song was never played again. 190807The Feudal system was built on urine. The peasants did all the work, and were known as pee-ons. The nobles owned everything, and were known as the pee-ers. Over time, these terms have been shortened to peons and peers. 190808These days, paper towels always rip such that a little tail is left behind on the roll. It's quite frustrating, but it's also scientifically useful. The tail helps prove that paper towels are vertebrates. 190809The Solitaire game on ancient versions of Windows had a card deck with a night-time castle. There were bats flying above the castle, and the bats flapped their wings. At one time, that was the height of computer graphics and we thought it was unutterably cool. 190810Bouncy castles shouldn't be just for children's birthday parties. Bouncy castles should be for all sorts of events -- adult birthday parties, retirement parties, weddings, cookouts, funerals, college graduations, brises, process servings, keggers. Bouncy castles, alcohol, and family get-togethers are natural complements. 190811I want to develop a line of reusable templates to cover the skin when sunbathing. They would form untanned places that spiffy pictures on tanned skin. They'd last as long as the tan, then the skin would be all set for more pictures. These templates would be called tantoos. 190812I've seen a bunch of listicles where non-Americans express disbelief, disgust, and (rarely) admiration for things Americans do, eat, and say differently than they do themselves. Most of these just come down to cultural differences and I don't think are anything to get exercised about. French bread vs. baguettes, colored pencils vs. pencil crayons, popcorn with vs. without melted butter, counter-clockwise vs. anti-clockwise. It's all just a bit of cultural color, and very few of these things should be immediately adopted by the other culture. The only one I've heard recently that absolutely should be done by everyone everywhere is that we should stop calling it weed whacking and start calling it whipper snipping. 190813Enzymes start to consume the body about three days after death. It'd be nice to have digital enzymes that would consume selected parts of one's digital presence after death. These digital enzymes would be programmable, such that the elapsed time and content to consume are selectable by the pre-corpse person. The obvious use for this would be to hide one's Deep, Dark Secrets. However, it's more generally useful to get rid of all the unnecessary, unremarkable cruft that's left lying around, unwanted by anyone, cluttering up the digital landscape. 190814The devastating ordeal of another doesn't diminish the pain and suffering one experiences themselves. 190815One of the joys of mountain hiking is getting to a stream and soaking the poor footsies in the cold mountain water. The immediate cooling relief extends into the rest of the hike because the water also numbs the feet and legs so the pre-soak pain and agony are buried deep for the return trip. 190816Is it really a vacation if there's no bodily injury? 190817When hillwalking, you know sheep are near by the small piles of pellet plops. You know cows are near by the large mounds of cow plop slurry. Driving on the highway, I can see when trucks are near by the large rubber piles of truck plops. 190818I don't trust seagulls. They go out in the middle of nowhere in the ocean all alone and just float, doing nothing. Seagulls are up to something.Coastal Maine Week 190819People love to see whales breeching but they don't understand that's the whales' way of telling us to go away and leave the seas alone.Coastal Maine Week 190820Bathrooms on boats are called the head because when the water gets pitchy, the only safe way to pee is to lean your head on the wall to help hold you up.Coastal Maine Week 190821Waves aren't caused by the moon. They happen from a concerted effort by the world's octopuses waving all their arms in elaborate, coordinated patterns -- making big waves to keep humans away from the oceans.Coastal Maine Week 190822A Song:
She's a light-house,
She's lighty lighty, lettin' it all shine out.
She's a light-house,
That light is bright and that's a fact,
Ain't holding lumens back.Coastal Maine Week
190823The pamphlet about Monhegan Island said there is almost no wind-borne seeding for plants that populate the island. This means that all the plants on the island had to have been brought by man. What bozo thought it was a good idea to bring poison ivy? Only a lunatic would want to bring such a nasty plant to such a beautiful island. Or a super-villain. Maybe Monhegan Island is the secret island lair of a super-villain.Coastal Maine Week 190824Gulls are the crows of the sea.Coastal Maine Week 190825Fashionable marsupials have stopped carrying their babies around in pouches and are now using messenger bags. 190826Angels and demons each have their own stereotypical tools of trade: angels have harps and demons have pitchforks. With the antipathy inherent in the relationship between angels and demons, it seems that angels are armed with a musical instrument and demons with a pointy farm tool. Instead of being prissy and delicate instruments, good sturdy harps used by angels (which almost certainly are constructed of gold and other precious metals) would be superb bludgeons in the celestial battle against evil. Harp strings would make for excellent garrotes during angelic commando raids and close-in fighting. Also, cartoons have amply demonstrated how harps can be used in archery. I think angels' harps must not really be musical instruments after all. Rather, they must be weapons to be used when fighting demons. 190827At Highland games, come lunchtime the lines at food vendors get unreasonably long. It often seems like it'll be dinnertime by the time you get your food. It'd be nice if you could supplement your income by selling PBJ's to people who don't want to wait in line for traditional fried food available at games. 190828Music is a branch of applied mathematics. 190829According to the BBC, a mother koala feeds her baby her liquified poop in order to "train" the baby's digestive system to eat toxin-laden eucalyptus leaves. Supposedly, this introduces the proper micro-organisms to the baby's digestive tract so the toxins can be digested safely. I think it's really a weaning technique. "I'm gonna keep feeding you poop slurry until you eat the dang leaves!" 190830When students enter medical school, they should have genetic testing done to see what diseases they are most likely to be afflicted with. Then they should be funnelled into that specialty for their career. This imbues them with a certain incentive to improve treatments and develop cures. 190831I had a really hard time learning how many days are in each month. A few -- September, February, December -- came easily, but not the others. By far, the hardest to remember was which month has 32 days.

September, 2019 190901There have been a number of Bibles over the years that have updated the language to languages and idioms used by the people contemporary to the new translations. Hebrew and Greek versions were translated to King James' English, King James' English was modified to more recent English, more recent English was modernized to 70's hippie English, 70's hippie English was deformalized even further to a more prosaic, story-like form. It's about time to bring the Bible up into the time of internet-based social media. At the very least, all instances of "Lo!" should be replaced with "LOL". 190902Molecular biologists study the anatomy, physiology, behavior, and mating habits of molecules. 190903I really hate it when I look at my clock a couple minutes before the alarm goes off. I can't get back to sleep. I know I'm going to hit the snooze button. I've got to lie there awake those precious minutes waiting for the blasted alarm to go off so I can snooze the alarm. At those times, I desperately wish the alarm had a preemptive snooze button so I could hit it right then and not have to wait to go back to sleep. 190904Jo and I were talking about past gigs and I was trying to remember the name of Ligonier, PA. I just couldn't get my tongue to wrap around the right name, and I was left semi-coherent. I said, "It was Lah... Goh... Log... Gallifrey! It was Gallifrey! You know, where Mr. Rogers came from." After a second, we both laughed at that and then Jo said, "Ligonier." While she's right, I think I was too. I think Mr. Rogers must have been a Time Lord. 190905There are days I feel like every tune I play is in the Durian mode. 190906Bugs are an important part of the weather and meteorologists really should include them in their weather reports. 190907Contestants in Jeopardy are required to answer in the form of a question. I'd hate to go up against a Canadian since the stereotype (which are always true) says Canadaians always append an "eh?" to the end of each statement. 190908Maryland colors are red and yellow, black and white. That's also the line from "Jesus Loves the Little Children". Maybe the song is really saying Jesus specifically loves the little children of Maryland. 190909When I was entering adolescence, I had a friend that talked so much about bikinis that for a long time I thought that was the word for women's bathing suits. 190910There's a direct correlation between the number of masts on your sailboat and the number of three-digit groups in your salary. 190911When I was younger, I would say "None" when people asked me how many kids I wanted. They'd smugly say, "You'll change your mind." When people tell me now that they want kids, they're never happy when I smugly say, "You'll change your mind." 190912Sometimes I wonder if Earth is an anomoly and Roger Dean is the true sculptor of reality. 190913Thanks to Crayola, any time I see the word "sienna", I always insert "burnt" before it. It doesn't matter if it's the actress, the car, or anything else, it's always Burnt Sienna. 190914There is Burnt Sienna and Raw Sienna, but no Juuust-Right Sienna. This goes to prove that the Three Bears had no Sienna at all. 190915Some people say that monkfish are in the order Lophiiformes but I think they are really either Jesuits, Benedictines, or Trappists. 190916I don't always understand folk wisdom. For instance, I never understood the old saying, "Hold your friends close and your enemas closer." 190917For many years I had trouble remembering the difference between Burl Ives and Charles Ives. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer would have been rather different if it had been done by Charles Ives. Can you imagine how weird our generation would have grown up if Charles Ives had done Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer? 190918In Henry IV, Shakespeare said, "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers." These days, I think many people would say insurance companies instead of lawyers. 190919Back in the 19th Century, Shep Truman was a librarian in the Chicago library system. He devised a very clever system of cataloging and organizing library collections. His system was efficient, easily understood, and instantly clear to all user. Unfortunately, Melvil Dewey was a member of academia and was able to convince universities and colleges that his own classification system was the superior system. This was the time when the early-edition headlines of "Dewey Beats Truman" were actually true. 190920The Tigers of the Sun grow lethargic as the heat of Summer's coals are banked to embers. Faint rumblings are heard as the Bears of Dusk start to grumpily awake in the caves of Autumn.Seasons of Bears and Tigers 190921UFOs are known for moving very erratically, swiftly zipping back and forth, hither and yon, across the night sky. There has been great speculation as to why UFOs traverse the skies in this manner, with experts providing a wide variety of opinions. By focussing on science the experts have been overlooking the obvious and simple explanation. UFOs are the bouncing balls in galactic sing-alongs. 190922When the Muppets were wandering in the wilderness, they got sustenance from manna-manna from Heaven.Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week 190923Q: What is a hemidemisemiquiver for?
A: Archers use them to hold 64 arrows.Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week
190924Q: Why did the chicken cross the Möbius Strip?
A: Because it looked more like a 'T' than an 'I'.Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week
190925Whenever Van Gogh went out drinking with his friends, he would always find stupid and dangerous things to do. As he was about to do these stupid and dangerous things, he'd turn to his friends and say, "Here, hold my ear."Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week 190926When horses are feeling frisky, they pay a visit to their local dressage parlor.Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week 190927Q: What is a sheep's favorite song?
A: Sweet Caroline
(Sing it with me: "Sweeeet Caroline! Baa! Baa! Baaaaaaa!")Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week
190928Q: Who do Bostonians think their favorite Peter Gabriel song is about?
A: Shark the Monkey.Great-Uncle of Dumb Joke Week
190929Cone Snails have been nicknamed the Cigarette Snail because their poison kills you so fast that you only have time to smoke one cigarette before you die. This time-to-death is another advantage to not being a smoker. 190930There are a number of cars now that will parallel park themselves for you. The adverts always make this look so nice and peaceful and easy. I am looking forward to the time when these cars are much more prevalent, and all the online vids of these cars getting into knife fights when they vie for the same spot.

October, 2019 191001Big red buttons are the moral equivalent of cliffs or tall buildings. 191002concur: No one likes to agree with anyone else; they want to have other people agree with them. This word developed as a means to grudgingly acknowledge that one agrees with another person. It is a macaronic word, combining Spanish and Middle English roots, forming a word which in full means, "I agree with this stinky dog over here."Fake Etymologies Week 1 191003boat: This word comes from the word "bow". The arc of a boat's keel resembles the arc of a bow, and so the name started to be applied to the vessel as well. The 't' was added at the end because it resembles a mast and yard.Fake Etymologies Week 1 191004caveat: Macaronic word formed from the Latin "cave", which means beware; and the English "eat", which means eat. The word is used to warn you that something is about to come bite you on the ass.Fake Etymologies Week 1 191005semen: Semen was given that name only after microscopes came into widespread use. The microscope showed that sperm looked like the sailor hats as used in the British navy. To quote the first scientist to conduct this examination, "It looks like a bunch of little seamen running around the Portsmouth Docks on a Saturday night."Fake Etymologies Week 1 191006coffin: Living people kept accidentally getting buried, so graveyard workers devised a method of testing the possible corpses for life. They'd put the bodies in an enclosed box and throw several handfuls of dust on the corpse's face. They'd close the lid and let things sit for a while. If they started hearing lots of coughing from the box, they'd open it up and take out the living person. This led to the "coughing box" being called a coffin.Fake Etymologies Week 1 191007politician: This English word is a combination of three other words: "poly", meaning many; "lie", meaning intentionally false statement; and "mortician", whose roots mean one who is skilled in death. Thus, a politician is a person whose many lies are going to bring about your death.Fake Etymologies Week 1 191008legato: This musical term means connected and smooth. It comes from two non-English words. It is from the Gaelic "le", meaning "with" or "like"; and from the Spanish "gato", meaning "cat". Thus, legato literally means "like a cat".Fake Etymologies Week 1 191009Middle Age is when you're walking down the street, minding your own business, and all of a sudden some previously content body part heaves itself out of an alley and starts frothy drunk raging at you, blaming you for all the world's ills. 191010Chapter titles should be given at the end of chapters. Titles often give away too much of what's about to come, either with specifics or in thematics. If the titles are given at the chapter's end, rather than the beginning, nothing is given away and the chapter theme is reinforced in the reader's mind. 191011Fans and critics alike have complained about the final season of Game of Thrones. This even led to a (rejected) petition for HBO to redo the last season. I think this is a fantastic opportunity. There could be several seasons worth of a non-canon "Game of Thrones: What If?" series, with each episode unrelated to the others. What if Joffrey was really the Night King? What if Danaerys found out she was an adopted peasant girl? What if Tyrion became the new High Sparrow, changed his wanton ways and led a revolt against The Powers That Be? What if Arya decided she'd had enough BS from Sansa and took her face -- and position? What if The Seven and the Old Gods and the Drowned God and the Lord of Light all got together and decided that nudity would be banned forevermore throughout Westeros? A long season could be done just on the outcomes of various characters winning the throne of Westeros. So many new stories, so many additional seasons, so many merchandising opportunities. The possibilities are endless. 191012I'm told I worry too much about trivial things like word definitions and grammar. I think not enough people worry about those things. People have a hard enough time communicating as it is; it's made all the harder if people are careless with the language. 191013String theory is applied to many theoretical aspects of quantum physics, in hopes of solving a multitude of pesky conundrums. While quantum physicists continue ignoring the practical use of quantum strings, string theory will remain firmly fixed in the realm of interesting curiosities. Instantaneous communication over vast distances can be achieved by tightly stretching a quantum string and attaching tin cans to each end. 191014I went to a lot of rock concerts in my youth. Consequently, I smelled a lot of pot. My favorite oolong tea smells a lot like pot, though fortunately it doesn't taste like it. However, it makes me wonder if during the late 70's/early 80's, pot on the East Coast was cut with oolong tea. 191015I've heard a lot of people talk about wanting a normal life, or being accused by their family of not living a normal life. When that happens, they should start thinking geometrically. In math, the geometric normal is perpendicular to a plane; normal doesn't follow the plane but runs at 90 degrees to it. When someone is accused of not living a normal life, the accuser usually means they aren't living along the "plane" of what the accuser wants. When someone says they want a normal life, that usually means their life is very different from the "plane" of what they think everyone else is living. It's likely these folks are already living a normal life, a geometrically normal life. It's also likely that everyone is living a geometrically normal life in relation to everyone else. People should embrace geometry and live their lives in the way that makes them happy. 191016(With apologies to Jane Austen) For what do we live, but to second-guess ourselves, and then second-guess our second-guesses in their turn? 191017Whenever I am the last person who is IT in a game of tag, I quietly hold on to that ITedness until I can secretly, unobtrusively tag another player and make them IT. 191018There's a style of Pacific Northwest Coast art that takes a particular figure -- raven, killer whale, whoever -- and arranges the body parts to fit the space. As often as not, it can be difficult to figure out who is pictured. I wonder if there's a geographic art that is similar to that style. Perhaps looking on a regional, continental, or global scale would allow us to see the artwork formed by the wider collections of such things as crop circles, stone monoliths, and ley lines, if only we knew how to properly arrange the elements. 191019There are people and religions that consider cards and card games to be evil. I don't think this can be true. There are 52 cards in the standard deck of cards. There are 52 seeds in a cacao pod. When card decks are related so closely with cacao, how can cards possibly be evil? 191020When aliens come to Earth, we're in deep trouble. The aliens will have had the opportunity to observe all the wars, fighting, racism, bigotry, lying, and general nastiness humans are responsible for. If Earth has a hope of surviving early encounters with aliens, it will be because of scientists and artists. Scientists have the curiosity about how things work, the desire to learn and understand the world, the universe. Artists have the drive to exercise their creativity, to do things that are beyond the merely functional and the immediacy of survival. Scientists and artists will prove the worth of humanity. 191021Many artists talk about art as being something distinct from crafts, though somehow related. Some practitioners refer to magic (or magik or magick) as The Craft. As far as magic goes, I wonder what the corresponding Art is to The Craft. 191022There are some amazing videos of the Northern Lights that were taken from the International Space Station. I would think these phenomena would be pretty common in the universe, wherever there are planets that have a magnetic field. SF television shows and movies never show these though; the skies from space are always clear. Maybe the Lights are incredibly rare in the universe. Maybe that's why we have so many UFO sightings, and aliens are actually interstellar tourists coming to see the Earth Lights. 191023I've heard artists speak disparagingly of crafts -- they're nice enough for amateurs, but certainly not something a real artist would do. With this derision for crafts, why do artists talk with reverence about Their Craft? 191024"Annie" is just a translation of "Beauty and the Beast" from 18th century France to New York City during the Great Depression. 191025In my day, we didn't have this enormous variety of candy. There were a lot of varieties, but only two types of M&M's, only one Twix, only one Snickers. Kids are so spoiled these days.Halloween 2019 191026What can be said about candy corn? They aren't chocolate, they overpower the taste of chocolate, they gum up the mouth. Only dentists and people that hate children give out candy corn.Halloween 2019 191027Reese's Pieces are delicious bite-size turds excreted by a grotesque alien, who comes to conquer Earth and spread cancer with its glowing fingertip.Halloween 2019 191028"Fun" size candy bars are bitter life lessons from jaded, cynical adults whose hopes and dreams have died years ago, life lessons they are trying to impart to children to show that when you expect wonders and amazing things you only end up with a pale, disappointing shadow of the real thing.Halloween 2019 191029"King" size candy bars are the great hope of children. There's always a rumor of that one house a few streets over that's giving out the Kings, but no one is ever sure exactly which one it is. But maybe you can luck in to finding it.Halloween 2019 191030Special Darks were always rare. Three of the misleadingly named Fun-sized Special Darks were the most you could hope for, and you always felt the universe was right if you got even one.Halloween 2019 191031Four-packs of Reese's Peanut Butter Cups are the ultimate, unattainable prize. Kids have heard of them, maybe seen them in a store, but no one ever gives them out on Halloween.Halloween 2019

November, 2019 191101Whether actual or metaphorical, it's always best to make sure you have clean, fresh underwear. You never know who's going to be snooping around your drawers -- exes, parents, children, doctors, or police -- and clean underwear is always best. 191102The time clock was invented to give workers something to punch besides their boss. 191103Our opposable thumbs are the means by which humans will always rule the Earth. With them, we can text warnings to each other whenever the non-thumbed animals are rising in revolt. 191104The Tigris has long been my favorite ancient river because the name evoked images of tigers just hanging out on the banks having a good old time there. 191105Moving trucks are signs of life changes. It might be someone moving out of their parents' house, a student off to college, a couple moving into their first house, a couple moving into their dream home, people moving into a retirement home, a move-out from a divorce, a piano on its way to a new home. These are all major life changes and they are all signalled by a moving truck. 191106The aphorism "past performance is not an indicator of future results" does not apply to consumer appliances. 191107Piccolos are castrati flutes. 191108Group telecons should enforce a brief muting period for people who join a meeting in progress. This would give them context for the meeting and the current discussion, rather than allowing newcomers to just blunder into the middle of whatever is happening. 191109It can take some time for modern technology and society to reach all the way to our rural environs. We do have telephones and internet and cable, at last. I am hopeful that it won't take too many more years before we get the NUMODS as well. The NUMODS, the Pneumatic Mouse Delivery System, will revolutionize handling of captured mousies. After capturing a mouse in one of our NUMODS live-traps, we will insert the ballistic live-trap into the NUMODS port and send the mouse on the most exciting trip of its life, as it hurtles through the tubeways and channels of the NUMODS system. Eventually the mousie will end up in NUMODS Central, where the mouse will be tenderly cared for until a new, loving home can be found for the intrepid mouse rocketeer. Efficient mouse removal for us, thrilling adventure for the mouse -- everyone wins! 191110When we drove past your parents' old house, which they lived in for most of your life, you marvelled that there were people actually using the front door. Your family rarely used that door, and yet here were these newcomers, using that door with abandon. Times change, and so does the way things are used. I wonder what we do in our house that the previous owners would find astonishing, and what we do that would surprise or shock those who come after us. 191111There are people who hold conversations and arguments with their TV. They yell at the sports guys when a mistake is made. They provide suggestions and guidance during cooking competitions. They warn the teens in horror movies about going into unlit rooms. I wonder what sort of advice and comments they make when watching porn. "Ew, don't put that in there!" "Oh, man, you better go wash your hands and feet before you do anything else!" "Not the chocolate cake! The chocolate cake is for eating, you dumb goober! The fruit cake is for rubbing on yourself!" "If that dog doesn't just keep walking past that kitchen door, I'm gonna hunt that man down and make him use a blue-ringed octopus as a cock ring." 191112Dogs are always a great boon for stage and screen. What story can't but be helped by the addition of a dog. The big problem is getting the dogs to behave and act in just the right way for the story. Too often the dogs are too friendly, or are forever wagging their tails, or are chowing down at craft services. There's an obvious, but unconventional, solution. Werewolves would be great for stage, as long as they could control themselves. They could easily and quickly be told what was needed for a particular scene. However, it wouldn't do for the werewolves to attack the cast or audience. I don't think the audience would appreciate a scene like: "The sun will come out tomor- Sandy, no, stop! Sto-". "GROWL! chompchompchomp" 191113"The Breakfast Club" and "Romeo and Juliet" are extremely different, but they show that sometimes 'u' is the only difference between a teenage montage and a teenage Montague. 191114I'm used to thinking of the adjective "toasty" as equating something to how I like toast: warm, welcoming, slathered with melted butter. So my feet can be toasty -- they're warm, they're happy to share their warmth, though they're seldom slathered with melted butter. There are distant lands whose toast is cold, hard, and half-destroyed when one tries to spread it with hard, cold, unforgiving butter. I wonder if people in these distant lands use the word toasty to relate things to cinder blocks.Word Week 5 191115The word hogtied has been used for over a century as a way of saying that something has been tightly bound and cannot move. These days, it would be more appropriate to say that someone had been cable-tied.Word Week 5 191116"Bodleian" was the Middle English form of the word we now know as "bodacious."Word Week 5 191117English is a wonderfully rich language that adapts and changes according to the needs of the people. There are some things, however, that really shouldn't be inflicted on the language. F'rinstance, it is inarguably an abomination that "aroma" and "smell" are slowly being replaced by "aromatics".Word Week 5 191118I have used the word idjit for years. I didn't have a hard and fast definition for it, but I felt it was innocuous and meant (roughly) goofball. I only recently learned that it was a slang way of calling someone an idiot. That was not what I was expecting and it was a big surprise. I fear that in my ignorance I have called people an idjit to their face.Word Week 5 191119Expletives and exclamations are best when either very short or very long. Short words are great for those times when you need something quick. Words with lots of syllables are great for when you need to put stress in specific places to achieve different effects. Element names are excellent for multisyllabic cursing. "GadoLINium, boy, what's wrong with you!" "I have had it with these aluMINium snakes on this aluMINium plane!" "Get your arsenic butt over here!" "Oh, strontium!" "EuuuuuROPium!"Word Week 5 191120The word ineffable is a curious word. It's a fully formed word, yet it sounds like it contains an abbreviation. For quite some time, ever since I first saw Cats, I've wondered what this word could possibly mean. I recently saw a movie on broadcast TV and all the curse words were abbreviated. "F. you." "F. that.". "Go to H.". That clued me in that ineffable was really short for infuckable. I'm still not sure what the word means, but I feel I'm getting closer.Word Week 5 191121When I was a kid, I used to think that the holes on putting greens were bottomless. I thought that when you putted the ball in, you either had to be close enough to grab it really, really fast or you lost your ball forever. I've never verified that this isn't actually the case. 191122When I was a kid, my grandmother would always tell me to wear a coat when I went outside or, as she said, "you'll catch your death!" Now that I'm an adult and can think for myself and plan ahead, I am proactively not wearing a coat when I go outside, but I do carry rope and handcuffs. If I can manage it, I am going to catch my Death and then keep it bound and gagged in the basement until I'm good and ready to die. 191123When I was a kid, I saw lots of people with those "I'm With The Band" t-shirts. At first, I thought they were referring to the high-school band my father directed. After a few years, I realized the error of my ways and decided the shirts were referring to The Band, the one that played at Woodstock. It was quite a long time before I realized the shirt was much less interesting than that. 191124When I was a kid, I had trouble comprehending the difference between a roadie and a groupie. 191125Pizza is just an Italian taco that hasn't been folded yet.Food Week 17 191126Most people try to hide it when they double-dip their chip into a bowl of dip. Not me. The faster people know I'm double-dipping, the faster that bowl of dip becomes all mine and I don't have to share any more dip.Food Week 17 191127We have a number of recipes that call for fancy-cut green beans. I imagine that those beans are cut by people wearing tuxes or ball gowns, and I wonder how formalwear ever came to be an important part of bean preparation.Food Week 17 191128If Ben Franklin had gotten his way and the turkey was the national bird, we would be having eagle and stuffing on Thanksgiving.Food Week 17 191129Mayonnaise is clearly the supreme ruler of condiments. Not only does it improve almost anything, but it's the one ingredient that improves any seafood. Also, it's the ingredient that turns crab and lobster into crab imperial or lobster imperial. It couldn't do that if mayonnaise wasn't the supreme ruler of condiments.Food Week 17 191130Whole-wheat bread -- putting the "sand" back in "sandwich".Food Week 17

December, 2019 191201Food stacking is a curious thing. You put a steak on a steak, you have two steaks. You put a sandwich on a sandwich and you have one club sandwich. You put a lasagna on another lasagna and you have one lasagna. All these stacked foods can be separated though. Some foods can't be separated. You put spaghetti on top of another spaghetti and they intermingle and become an inseparable spaghetti. You put ice cream on top of ice cream and you darn well better keep away from my big bowl of ice cream.Food Week 17 191202We just played our first Christmas gig of the year. This was a good background-music job, and we got to select all the music we played. This job was a really nice reminder of how much I like Christmas music. 191203Always "Like" people's new profile pictures. Always. 191204The "magic" beans Jack got to grow the huge beanstalk weren't actually magic, they were really radioactive. The beanstalk grew from normal beans that mutated from the intense radioactivity. 191205The US's first dollar bills featured a picture of Salmon P. Chase, who was then the Secretary of the Treasury. He also was the designer of those first bills. Sounds kind of fishy to me. 191206Time is the sandpaper that smooths the rough edges of memory. 191207Autocorrected text should be recognized as a new dialect of English. 191208The great thing about playing trombone is you always sit in back. This means you rarely hear bad playing from others, and your own bad playing blats away from you and you aren't subjected to it yourself. 191209Auto-tune has become pervasive in pop music, so much so that it can seem odd if a song doesn't have that odd auto-tune quality in the vocals. Auto-tune is okay for small fixes, but it sounds weirder and weirder as larger fixes are made. I wonder if singers intentionally sing way off-pitch and off-key in order to trigger greater levels of auto-tuning for the songs to get that really sizzley sound. 191210Cape buffaloes are very dangerous and kill more humans in Africa each year than any other animal. 98% of those humans are tourists, who can't quite take seriously an animal that has such a dapper and huge moustache on the top of its head. 191211A lot of people have been running around in the T-Rex and Velociraptor costumes lately. That's a very dangerous thing and is doing an incredible disservice to humanity. People are getting used to seeing these vicious predators running around cities and schools and stores and sporting events. Sure these dinosaurs are just people in costumes out to get a laugh. What happens when the real T-Rexes and the real Velociraptors start roaming the streets again? People will think these carnivores are just doofs in costumes trying to be funny. And they'll be laughing until the razor-sharp teeth start tearing into the passersby and the blood starts flowing. We won't know which dinosaurs to trust and which are out to kill us. 191212Germany has long tried to justify their starting World War II by insisting that the Dutch border guards provoked them by shooting across their shared border. According to Germany, "Hans shot first." 191213Movies tell us that any fighter pilot worth their salt must have a spiffy nickname. These nicknames should be known as a nom de zoom. 191214The choruses in the Messiah are filled with running lines of lots of little notes, all different. The key to getting those runs right is to exude confidence while singing and to be louder than anyone else. Whoever sings loudest and with confidence will be seen as singing the right notes. 191215No matter what the weather, queens and kings wear their reign-coats. 191216Planets are like giant deep-dish pizza orbs, where the oceans and deserts are the tomato sauce and cheese, and the continents are the pepperonis. 191217When I was a teen, my church youth group thought it'd be great to dress down for one Sunday service. Instead of suits and ties or dresses, we'd wear jeans and t-shirts. It would be a powerful, striking, stunning, meaningful demonstration that it didn't matter what clothes you wear to church; shorts, t-shirts, jeans were all acceptable and wouldn't get in the way of worship. Our parents quickly put a stop to that idea. They agreed with the point we wanted to make, they just disagreed with us trying to make it. Forty years later, and sometimes you have to look hard to find anyone wearing a tie in church. 191218In cold weather, gloves are handy. 191219Until the dang glowplug came along, Dasher was Santa's fastest, strongest, most dependable reindeer. Then came that one stupid blizzard, and everything went pear-shaped. Just because his nose lit up like a bar's neon sign, that slow, alcoholic, pathetic excuse for a reindeer got the lead gig. He can barely keep up with the rest of the team, and he wouldn't be able to take the Christmas cold if it weren't for that puncheon of peppermint schnapps he hides in the sleigh. Sure, Santa knows about it, but with a wink and laying his finger aside of his nose, he pretends he doesn't.Reindeer Week 191220Dancer and Prancer were once a champion ballroom dance team. Then, off~season one year, Prancer got involved in the high-stakes world of drum-major competitions. All was well until he didn't take a fall when his "sponsors" told him to. Prancer's recalcitrance brought about an end to his days in ball-room and drum-major competitions, and the duo had to move on to other endeavours.Reindeer Week 191221Before Santa found her and added her to the reindeer team, Vixen was an exotic dancer. She specialized in pole dancing. North Pole dancing.Reindeer Week 191222Comet's real name is Kermit. He got the nickname Comet as a result of a poorly planned prank. He went to the Solstice dance with candles tied to his antlers. He unintentionally used the no-blow-out candles, and then panicked when the candles wouldn't go out. He ran around, trailing fire and sparks, just like a comet.Reindeer Week 191223Cupid had long wanted to live up to his namesake, but gave up that dream when he realized antlers and hooves do not work well with bows.Reindeer Week 191224Donner was always a powerhouse among the reindeer, but his taste in food for dinner parties was always questionable.Reindeer Week 191225Blitzen doesn't like to talk about it, but he used to have something of a weight problem. The mean reindeers used to call him Blintzen.Reindeer Week 191226In the Christmas story in Luke, the host of angels comes and sings to the shepherds, after which the shepherds abandon their sheep in the fields and go to the stable in Bethlehem. Most manger scenes, both arty and consumer manger scenes, show the shepherds and a sheep. Why did the shepherds leave all the other sheep alone in the fields, fending for themselves against lions and tigers and bears, but they brought that single sheep? What was so special about that one sheep? 191227I've thought a bit more about that one sheep at the manger in Bethlehem. I'm thinking that the shepherds decided to provide Mary and Joseph with dinner, and they brought the groceries on the hoof. 191228Whenever I hear the Christmas story from Luke, I always hear it in either Linus' voice or Handel's voice. 191229People mock the Star Wars stormtroopers for being such lousy aims -- they rarely hit anything with their blasters! Good thing, too, since the stormtroopers were the iron fist enforcing the will of the evil empire. Have you ever considered that maybe those stormtroopers were engaging in quiet civil disobedience and intentionally missing their targets? Maybe they recognized the oppressive evil of their overlords and were shooting wildly to support the rebels, even sacrificing their own lives rather than actually oppressing and murdering innocents. The stormtroopers might be the unsung heroes of the revolution. 191230For years, I've seen photos of High Fashion, and it's always looked like clothes that no one would want to wear. I finally realized that all this time I've been looking at High Fashion wrong. Rather than looking at it as clothes, I need to look at it as what it actually is. High Fashion is actually a form of sculpture. 191231The Fates are often depicted as weaving on big looms. Where does that yarn come from? Is it taken straight from the back of a Fateful Sheep? Is someone spinning the Fateful Wool into yarn for the Fates? (I envision an unbroken strand of wool leading directly from a sheep's back to the spinning wheel directly to the loom.) Do the Fates pick up huge lots of wool from their local craft store or shepherd? What would happen if a regular person knitted a scarf from the Fateful Wool?

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 dopey.

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:

Copyright 2011-2019 by Wayne Morrison. All Rights Reserved.