Thursday, December 13, 2012

A thought on mortality and life

Life is too short to waste it drinking bad beer, bad wine or bad whiskey. But spending time with bad women . . . ?

Friday, November 2, 2012

Tea Party Atheists

You know how they say there's no atheists in a foxhole? Well, there are no tea party republicans in office during a disaster - except for the ones whose heads are so far up their asses that they've forgotten what being human and humane is about.

Romney screwed by hurricane Sandy?

When it came to Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath, Romney must be cursing up a storm. I can hear it now.

"Why the ding dang dong did a storm like this have to happen a week before the election. There's not a fling flang fling thing I can do to look good, because I can't do a hing hang hong thing about it. I donate a bus full of canned goods and they tell me that nobody's electric can opener works. How were we supposed to think of that?"

"All I can do is hope Obama pulls a George W. Bush."

Obama might not be the greatest leader in the history of the world, but he isn't stupid enough to pull a George W. Bush. Hell, even George Bush isn't stupid enough to pull off another George W. Bush.

As for Mr. Romney, the best he can come up with is to cut the national government out of the disaster relief chain and leave it to the states, and those who want to donate a few unnecessary cans of food to the cause when what's needed is hard, cold cash.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Random Headlines in Random Order Making Scary Sense

The three headlines appeared in the more news box in the center of the home page a today. Read one after the other, they make their own story:

Venezuela Will Investigate Report of Massacre
Yale President Says He Will Step Down
5 Australian Troops Die in Afghanistan

I am sure there is no link between these stories except they all occurred on the same day. Still, imagine this:

The news that a massacre of miners in Venezuela causes the president of Yale U. to announce he's quitting. What did he have to do with the massacre. And was it his announcement or the massacre in Venezuela that led to the attack on Australian troops - rather than those of some other nationality?

Informed people want to know. Or do they?

I will not guarantee that clicking on the links will take you to the stories, but it might happen.

Friday, August 24, 2012

what the internet is good for: Volapük

Have you ever heard of a language called Volapük?

Until today, I never heard of it and though I've heard of it now, I don't really give a damn about it. What I thought was interesting was how this "constructed language" claimed upwards of a million users - says "adherents" - in the late 19th Century, declined to about 20-30 by the beginning of this century, and has revived in the last decade, nearly tripling its users, most likely because they can find each other on the internet.

Considering the numbers - that is roughly 90 adherents, it is noted in Wikipedia that there are approximately 119,000 articles in the Volapük Wikipedia, which ranks it 37th.

So what's my point?
That the internet helps preserve things that would otherwise have faded away.

Maybe next time I'll tell you something you didn't know already.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Ambiguity a la carte, or who did the Panda shoot?

Down at the bottom of the web page was a photo of what looked like a tent full of stuff and the following lede:

San Jose Stores Property of Homeless After Sweeps.

Wow, how ambiguous can you get?

occasion musing on email subject lines

Today, catching up with the false positives - Postini flags roughly 20% of the newsletters and other legitimate emails as SPAM and no matter how often I try to train the program, the percentage remains about the same - I got to musing on subject lines.

Here's an example: Learn more about our permanent hair loss solution.
I said to myself, is this an ad for a depilatory? Certainly, the way it's phrased makes it seem like the product is meant to make sure hair you lose doesn't come back. I personally don't care to lose any hair.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Somebody ought to write a book

Some title I saw at Posman's Bookstore in Grand Central yesterday struck me as very funny, because it wasn't a very interesting title. Of course I forgot that title but not the one that somebody ought to write:

Phrenology in the Age of Texting and Twitter: How to read the bumps you get on your head from pounding it with your smart phone after sending that stupid tweet or drunken text.

Maybe I'll get around to it someday.
Nah, it's too much like beating your head against the wall.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Transformative food names

Why eat a Philly Cheesesteak in NYC? Why not something new and high priced, like a Chili Feesteak (or Chilly Feesteak)?

Ok, so NYC is known for cheesecake, which is not served by the slice but by the piece, as in "have a piece of cheesecake." I love a piece of cheesecake but today I'm in a different place and want a cheese of peacecake.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Fertilizer season - a very quick thought

In the film "Apocalypse Now," Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore (Robert Duvall) sniffs the air and says "I love the smell of napalm in the morning."

Well, it's fertilizer season, and though I don't know if anyone's making a movie about the end of farming to be called "A-Crop-alypse Now" or such, but I can imagine a farmer wearing a hat of the same shape as Kilgore's, standing in the middle of his/her field on a cool, spring morning, sniffing the air and saying  "I love the smell of manure in the morning."

Monday, April 2, 2012

Wedding in Geneva

I was in an antiques market in Geneva NY this past Saturday. Six sisters were shopping for interesting things to wear to one of their daughter's upcoming big Long Island Wedding.

I said "I don't believe in big weddings because then, no matter how things work out, you don't regret the wedding."

Thursday, March 29, 2012

If you didn't think of this, you should have

A fossil was recently discovered that's contemporaneous with Lucy, the famous, early hominid. You can read all about it in R&D Magazine online

It is probable, from the article, that this specimen, when alive was not an Australopithecus afarensis, Lucy's species. Those responsible for naming species will come up with an appropriate scientific name. But for this individual, how about we call it Desi?

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friendship - Edgar Guest meets reality

"I'd like to be the sort of friend
     that you have been to me . . ."

So if you don't mind, I'll take that knife.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Slice with a slice

This just reached me from the Grub Street Boston blog: Urologists in Cape Cod are offering free pizza with a vasectomy.

Wait here while we slice the pepperoni.

Catching up with the news

So what's up with the healthcare system in Venezuela? I heard that Chavez just got back from Cuba, where he went to get his cancer surgery done.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

What's in a state motto?

Oregon state motto (translated):
She flies with her own wings.

Real life:
The rest of us require chemical assistance.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A favorite Mondegreen

One of my favorite lines from the film "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" isn't "I don't have to show you any stinkin' badges," though that is a great line.

No, my favorite line is Humphrey Bogart's Fred C. Dobbs talking about being a baker. He says "I knead dough, and plenty of it." (Click to hear him say it.)

This sound clip is probably still under copyright. I claim fair use in linking to it.

Monday, March 12, 2012

What do they do with the stuff they take out?

I'm walking past this pizza joint on 4th Ave. downtown, and they got this sign outside the store. They make vegan pizza and they make gluten free pizza. I didn't have time to go in, but I was wondering: if I asked them to put some of the gluten they take out of the other pizzas on mine, could they? Would they? What do they do with the gluten they take out of gluten pizza?

Saturday, March 10, 2012

The City That Never Sleeps

Here's the scenario:
It's 4AM. You were out partying earlier and now you're home. You try to sleep but you just can't seem to drop off. You don't know what's wrong. You just toss and turn, get up, get a drink of water, go back to bed, turn and toss, get up and go into the bathroom. You turn on the light, look at yourself in the mirror. Gah! Your hair! What a friggin' mess! What are you going to do?

Well, it's New York, the 24 hour hair and spa party to the rescue!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Grammar lesson

I keep seeing this poster for Mia Hamm - you can see one here  - and every time I do I wonder why nobody ever mentions her grammatically correct sister, Ima.

Don't you?

Extending the greeting card

This seemed totally random when I saw this Uta Hagen quote on a greeting card:

"We must overcome the notion that we must be regular... "

Yeah, I know some people who only take dumps two or three times a week, and they are perfectly happy.