Friday, October 10, 2008

Rite, Right, Site, Sight

As the steel trap, formerly known as my mind, continues to weaken due to old age, medication cocktails, and/or carelessness, I continue to be aggravated due to the misuse of some words, including rite/right and site/sight.

How one can mistaken "right" a principle for "rite" a ceremony continues to baffle me. So does interchanging "sight" having to do with vision with "site" indicating "location".

I know I have simplified the meanings of these words to accommodate my means of making a point. As parsing the written language becomes fuzzier, the meaning of certain words does not. My blood pressure would benefit if it did.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Blogger Analysis

Just because I've severly cut back on entries for my own blog doesn't mean I have stopped reading the blogs of others. And I've been very disappointed in some of them.

It appears that some bloggers evolved from solely posting for the joy of writing, of sharing, to seizing the opportunity to display their own superiority, whether it's intelligence, vocabulary, depth and width of knowledge, mastery of grammar, whatever.

I think my hiatus from blogging resulted from the fear that I would fall into the same trap. Ego can be a very destructive force.

Monday, June 30, 2008

What If.....February 12, 1809 Had Never Happened?

You've probably guessed or knew that Abraham Lincoln was born on that date. Born on the same date was Charles Darwin.

The current issue of Newsweek has an article on the two and how their contributions helped shape the world we know nearly 200 hundred years later. I haven't read the article yet but I've sure had fun imagining what my world would seem like if either---or neither---had ever been born.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

I'm Back?

I have sort of abandoned my blogs, this one and Sir Ryder of Cupp, for several months. Why? I don't really know. And while my readers don't seem to have missed my writing, I have missed writing for my readers. (Readers, plural. How's that for optimism?)

Checking stats for the last few months reveals that readership remains about the same, thanks to pictures of the world's ugliest cats and a recipe for kookie Christmas cookies. I guess I haven't acquired Anna Quindlen status yet. Maybe that explains the silence. (How's that for pessimism?)

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Icy Greeting

We live in Western NYS and this was the view out one of the windows yesterday morning. We still have some of the ice but by and large, we escaped the weather extremes that hit other parts of the country.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Averages Trivia

Here are some trivia factoids from one of my favorite sites:

*Humans shed about 600,000 particles of skin every hour - about 1.5 pounds a year. By 70 years of age, an average person will have lost 105 pounds of skin.

*Every square inch of the human body has an average of 32 million bacteria on it.
*The FDA allows an average of 30 or more insect fragments and one or more rodent hairs per 100 grams of peanut butter.

*The linen bandages that were used to wrap Egyptian mummies averaged 1,000 yards in length.
*The average American will eat 35,000 cookies in a lifetime.

*Average number of hummingbirds required to create the weight of 1 ounce: 18.

*An ear of corn averages 800 kernals in 16 rows.

Smokers are likely to die on average six and a half years earlier than non-smokers.

*In 1900 the average age at death in the US was 47.
*The ashes of the average cremated person weigh 9 pounds.

*The average cow produces 40 glasses of milk each day.

*The average elephant produces 50 pounds of dung each day.

If you would like to read more, there are many more averages listed on the website.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Discovery of Governmentium---Ha Ha!

In the context of the pending elections and in-your-face politics, I am reposting an article about a mock scientific discovery. I hope it will give you a laugh.

Heaviest Element Recently Discovered---Governmentium

A major research institution has recently announced the discovery of the heaviest element yet known to science. The new element has been named "Governmentium."

Governmentium (Gu) has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312. These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons.

Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert. However, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A minute amount of Governmentium causes one reaction to take four days to complete, when it would normally take less than a second.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of 4 years; it does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy assistant neutrons exchange places. In fact, Governmentium's mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons.

This characterization of moron promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a certain quantity in concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as Critical Morass.

When catalylized with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium--an element which radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons, but twice as many morons.

I don't know who wrote this, but I applaud them for their insights.

Lewis Perdue Comments

I just finished reading a book by Lewis Perdue and am reminded of the characteristics that make him one of my favorite authors.

His imagination and words create people, places and plots with precision and clarity. At the same time, he constructs a novel that is both thrilling and chilling as you are forced to realize "My God! This could really happen!"

If you are interested in genetics and bioweapons, read this book.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

"Menial" Jobs

I took this picture when we were in Paris a few years ago. I was fascinated by the workers in the distinctive green uniforms and learned that these workers were assigned a street area and they spent the day sweeping the walks in in their area. I thought it was a great idea that should be exported to our country where it would help on two fronts: 1) it would provide jobs for the unskilled workers who complained about not being able to find work and 2) it would help clean up our dirty cities.

When I came upon the photo again tonight, I remembered my earlier musings and then I immediately thought "No. Americans would not take such menial jobs." And for some reason, illegal aliens came to mind. Their defenders tell us that they are performing the jobs that Americans will not do.

Uhm..............I may have to rethink my position on illegal aliens.