Saturday, December 03, 2011

3411 Joke 1

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Don't worry about people stealing your idea. If it's original,
you'll have to ram it down their throats.
-- Howard Aiken --


How many dogs does it take to change a light bulb? It depends on the breed.
  • Golden Retriever: The sun is shining, the day is young, we've got our whole lives ahead of us, and you're inside worrying about a stupid burned-out light bulb?
  • Lab: Oh, me, me!!! Pleeeeeeze let me change the light bulb! Can I? Can I? Huh? Huh? Can I?
  • Border Collie: Just one. And I'll replace any wiring that's not up to code.
  • Dachshund: I can't reach the stupid lamp!
  • Toy Poodle: I'll just blow in the Border collie's ear and he'll do it.By the time he finishes rewiring the house, my nails will be dry.
  • Rottweiler: Go Ahead! Make me!
  • Shi-tzu: Puh-leeze, dah-ling. Let the servants. . . .
  • Malamute: Let the Border collie do it. You can feed me while he's busy.
  • Cocker Spaniel: Why change it? I can still pee on the carpet in the dark.
  • Doberman Pinscher: While it's dark, I'm going to sleep on the couch.
  • Mastiff: Mastiffs are NOT afraid of the dark.
  • Keeshund: (Stands with furrowed brow for several minutes, then wanders off having forgotten what the problem was.)
  • Chihuahua: Yo quiero Taco Bulb.
  • Pointer: I see it, there it is, right there... there... there... see?
  • Greyhound: It isn't moving. Who cares?
  • Australian Kelpie: First I'll put all the light bulbs in a little circle...
  • Old English Sheep Dog: Light bulb? Light bulb? That thing I just ate was a light bulb?


Friday, December 02, 2011

3410 Frost

Friday, December 2, 2011

Never ever lie to your child or make promises you don't intend to keep.
It may be convenient at the moment,
but the child will never again trust or believe you.
-- Silk --


The online weather reports say it's 37 F out there, but the extremely accurate darkroom thermometer I had tucked into the geranium pots says 0 C/32 F. Our first real frost.

It begins.


(It's 25 F at the old house upriver.)

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

3409 Propaganda

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Insurance of whatever kind is supposed to be there in case something goes wrong.
It has been my experience that having insurance seems to prevent anything going wrong.
Let it lapse, and you'll find out....
-- Silk --


Latest Nugget (yesterday):

We have one tooth breaking through on the bottom, and one on the top. And she's now crawling properly on hands and knees, and she's FAST! The cats are no longer safe.


This article is short and interesting:

To quote from the intro:
"Everyone knows that liberals and conservatives butt heads when it comes to world views, but scientists have now shown that their brains are actually built differently.

Liberals have more gray matter in a part of the brain associated with understanding complexity, while the conservative brain is bigger in the section related to processing fear, said the study on Thursday in Current Biology."

At, there's a good article entitled Propaganda: Nobody Does It Better Than America, by Paul Weber. It's a bit longer, but it's very good. I highly recommend a skim.

We all know that sex sells products. Fear and repetition sells ideas. Appeals to logic and fact sells nothing.

It's sometimes difficult to recognize propaganda - attempts to control your mind and how you think - especially when the propaganda is all you are given to consider, it's repeated over and over as if it's an accepted fact, and you are not given the real facts. Fear-based propaganda works especially well on the conservative brain.

Think about how our freedoms have been eroded over the past ten years, and how so many of us have been convinced that it's for our own good. And it's all based on fear.

Monday, November 28, 2011

3408 Bah, humbug.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The ugliest furniture will be forgiven anything if it's comfortable and useful.
That goes for people, too.
-- Silk --


Need another reason why I don't much care for the way Christmas is celebrated? Try this.

They stepped over him!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

3407 Be thankful for refrigerators!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The fastest way to drop ten years in appearance is to smile, and make sure the smile lines near your eyes show. Those are the most attractive wrinkles.
Show them.
-- Silk --


I am reading American Frugal Housewife, by Mrs. Child, "Dedicated to those who are not ashamed of economy." First published in 1833 by Carter, Hendee, and Co., Boston, now published by Applewood Books, Bedford, MA, publishers of America's Living Past.

Extensive passages on the preserving of meats and vegetables. When you read about how meats were packed in salt or brine, how long meats were kept (in a cool spot in the cellar), what a frugal housewife could do to freshen meat that was no longer "sweet", you wonder how they could EAT that stuff. And having eaten it, how they could live. And having eaten it and lived, how come their heads weren't blown off by their salt-induced blood pressure!

Most meats were cooked at a fast boil for hours and hours. I wondered how there could be any flavor left. Meat was then served slathered in butter - I guess because by the time it hit the table, it was dried out.

The other thing that struck me was how long vegetables were cooked. I don't see how anything was much more than unidentifiable mush.

We see the fireplaces in quaint colonial villages, and think about cooking over a fire as something like campfire cooking, but we don't have the faintest idea what was involved in getting the ingredients into the pot.

That part was seriously hairy.

3406 I guess I'm not a nice person.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

If you have a dark cat, have light carpeting, and vice-versa.
The shed hair might show up more, but so will a sleeping cat.
-- Silk --


I'm reading Dean Koontz's What the Night Knows (found it in a remainder bin). I'm about 2/3 through it, and already I'm hoping that the ending has the detective possessed and murdering his insufferable family and ending up raving mad in the state hospital he visited in the first chapter.

3405 Stupid

Sunday, November 27, 2011

It always amazes me to think that every house on every street is full of so many stories, so many triumphs and tragedies, and all we see are yards and driveways.
-- Glenn Close --


There are some Mensans who write compile and publish logical puzzle, brain teaser, and riddle books that are published with the Mensa logo and name on them. They're "approved and endorsed by" Mensa. I don't know what that means, whether anyone in authority ever read them, but I think many of them are an embarrassment to the organization.

When Jay was first diagnosed with the brain tumor, he was worried about losing logical function, so we bought some of those books to "test" him. We had planned to work through a bit every so often, and then maybe we'd be able to see or not see any loss of function, and it would be good mental exercise.

We got through maybe five pages in several books, and threw the damn things away. Puzzle after puzzle was poorly posed, so poorly posed that we came up with two or three possible answers that fit. For example, in one puzzle involving family relationships, the "answer" stated that blah blah blah, "because John was only 12 at the time and therefore cannot be the father." Duh? Many 12-year-olds are perfectly capable of fathering a child.

Others assumed without stating a 2-dimensional relationship, completely ignoring that fact that there were several other possible answers in 3-dimensions.

The books made us angry.

A few days ago, I found this: It bugged me, because it presents itself as a "Mensa test". It isn't. At best, it's a sampling of simple riddles from some of the books above, and repeats the sloppiness of those books. Yeah, it's a joke site, but ... really ....

I got so annoyed I tried to comment, but commenting required registering, and I don't register on any but commercial sites with good reputations (first step in avoiding spam and viruses).

And then today, a woman whom I know personally to be intelligent to the point of social disability posted some of the riddles on a Mensa social site.

My brain exploded.

Captain Frank and some of the boys were exchanging old war stories. Art Bragg offered one about how his grandfather led a battalion against a German division during World War I. Through brilliant maneuvers, he defeated them and captured valuable territory. After the battle he was presented with a sword bearing the inscription "To Captain Bragg for Bravery, Daring and Leadership. World War I. From the Men of Battalion 8." Captain Frank looked at Art and said, "You really don't expect anyone to believe that yarn, do you?"
What's wrong with the story?
The official answer: It's a lie. The inscription wouldn't have been "World War I".
My answer: There's nothing wrong with the story. "After" is not defined. The sword could have been presented at the 40th reunion of the battle/battalion.
How many times can you subtract the number 5 from 25?
The Official answer: Once. Thereafter, you are subtracting 5 from 20, 15, 10, etc.
My answer: An infinite number of times, and I get 20 every time.
There were an electrician and a plumber waiting in line for admission to the International Home Show," One of them was the father of the other's son. How could this be possible?
The Official answer: They were husband and wife.
My answer: If this confused you at all, you are very naive. They could still both be men. In any other joke, one of them would be a milkman. (Or, these days, they could be a gay couple who have adopted.)

Yeah, I understand that these examples are poor choices because they're "Ha! Gotcha!" riddles, whereas the brain teasers in the published books are much more serious - but I don't happen to have any of the serious ones at my fingertips. My objections, however, are the same. They don't consider other views or out-of-the-box thinking.