Archive for Say What?

La cage aux Fido

In fairness, it should be pointed out that he’s not nailed to the perch:

Medium bird cages

Cue the Everly Brothers.

(From Bad Newspaper via Miss Cellania.)

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Doo point

Under the circumstances, “windy” probably goes without saying:

Fartly cloudy and windy

Mama said there’d be days like this.

(Via Bad Newspaper. The paper in question is the News-Democrat & Leader of Russellville, Kentucky.)

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Swastacky

So apparently there are Grammar Nazis, after all:

Is trademark registration the next step?

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The invention of color

Apparently it took place some time after 1900:

At one point I was discussing the uniforms of the Civil War when immediately two or three hands shot into the air. I was not giving a lecture and throughout the discussion we were doing give and take, to make sure the kids understood what I was presenting. I acknowledged one boy who stated in complete seriousness and with an earnestness and thirst for knowledge “I thought there was no color until the twentieth century. Weren’t the uniforms grey and black?” I looked at him in dumbfounded amazement and noticed several other kids nodding in agreement.

You gotta admit, though: Betsy Ross did one hell of a job on that greyscale flag.

The Birth of Old Glory by Percy Moran

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This has something to do with the Mets

At least, I’m pretty sure it does:

Marlins 1, Mets 0

(From the Twitter of the Blog of the Nightfly.)

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What kind of a guru are you?

You may not have known this, but:

We exist as atomic ionization.

You and I are dreamweavers of the quantum matrix.

The galaxy is radiating ultra-sentient particles. Grace is the driver of faith. Nothing is impossible.

We must learn how to lead advanced lives in the face of dogma. It is time to take wonder to the next level. This quest never ends.

Humankind has nothing to lose. We are in the midst of a karmic condensing of wellbeing that will align us with the quantum matrix itself. Our conversations with other storytellers have led to a refining of ultra-internal consciousness.

The future will be a self-aware redefining of consciousness.

Rebirth is the healing of presence, and of us. Intuition requires exploration. By unfolding, we dream.

As you dream, you will enter into infinite understanding that transcends understanding. You will soon be reborn by a power deep within yourself — a power that is unrestricted, non-local. Through numerology, our hopes are baptized in growth.

Was this a random survey taken at the checkout counter of Buzzwords R Us? Well, not exactly. Seb Pearce explains:

“This all sounds like random sequences of buzzwords. I bet I could write code to generate it.” It seemed like not only a fun side project, but a great way to prove how easy it is to make hogwash that looks compelling. It might help show that it’s the language games and emotions that lure people into this stuff. I started scribbling down any words I could think of that evoked a feeling of bullshit: quantum, growth, matrix, path, potential, flowering…

And thus the New Age Bullshit Generator was born.

One click of the Generator, in fact, produced that entire first blockquote.

(Spotted in Charles Pergiel’s FB timeline.)

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Easily impressed

Lynn tuned into one of those ubiquitous Nature Shows — this one about Alaskan wildlife — and was perplexed by a statement of presumed certified meteorology:

At one point, talking about the approach of winter, the narrator said, in the usual This Is Seriously Dramatic voice, “The temperature can drop as much as 15 degrees in just a few weeks.” And yes, I’m sure we heard him right. He enunciated very well. He said 15, not 50. We were too stunned to laugh. Fifteen degrees in a few weeks? We do more than that in just one day. In fact, I’ve seen the temp drop 15 degrees in less than an hour. Perhaps he meant the high temperature or the low, or the average. If so he should have said that but still, even if that’s what he meant we can still top it here in Oklahoma. Take yesterday and today, for example. Yesterday’s high was somewhere around 70°F. This morning at 6:30 it was only 40°F. Today’s high is supposed to be 80°. I have no doubt it will get there. How about that Mr. Serious Drama Narrator?

Maybe he was on loan from Canada and was quoting Celsius, in which case we’re talking 27 degrees as we know them.

Then again, caribou probably don’t look at thermometers, so maybe the guy is referring to the overall average, and 15 degrees is a pretty fair drop. Over September, October and November in Oklahoma City, the average drops 34 degrees: about 11 each month, before things start to settle down (and “down” is the key word) in December and January.

And of course, there’s that infamous daily record, set 11 November 1911, with a high of 83 and a low of 17. (It dropped to 14 before sunrise on the 12th.) A sixty-nine-degree drop in 24 hours should impress even Serious Drama Narrators.

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No, they don’t eat bunnies

Personally, I wouldn’t have thought that these would have been much of a draw, but what do I know?

After-Easter Tarantulas

This store also carries crickets, rats, and bearded dragons.

(Via Bad Newspaper.)

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Resurrection shuffle

I don’t think I’d trust this, even if “Jesus H. Christ” is written on the flyleaf in red:

I heard St. Thomas the Apostle was putting one of these up on eBay.

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They get lost so easily here

The wire-service story:

A California-bound Southwest Airlines flight was diverted to Omaha, Neb. on Sunday after witnesses said a passenger tried to open a door.

The captain of the Chicago-to-Sacramento flight landed on Eppley Airfield to “have an unruly passenger removed” before continuing on to Sacramento, the airlines said in a statement.

The flight with 5 crew members and 134 passengers arrived safely at its destination about two hours behind schedule.

And where is this mysterious place called “Omaha”? Don’t ask CBS News:

CBS This Morning screenshot placing Omaha in eastern Kansas

(Via this Blake Waggoner tweet. Waggoner hails from, yes, Nebraska.)

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Awfully forward of them

From the sports section of the Oklahoman this morning:

Clipping from the Oklahoman 4/12/14 citing Kendrick Perkins as a forward

Perk, of course, is a center; I don’t think he’s played power forward, let alone small forward, for even a minute since he decamped here from Boston.

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A report in the public interest

Utility construction has made life difficult for a pub in Truro, despite its reputation as one of the best eateries in all of Cornwall. Their first order of business was to put up a sign to let their customers know that the Wig & Pen was still open, construction or no construction:

The Wig & Pen is open for business

Word spacing, one assumes, was not quite so high on their list of priorities.

The sign is now gone, perhaps because it was mentioned by Ricky Gervais, making some of these same points.

(Via Fark.)

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Irony chef

These days, pundits speak of the “optics” of a concept. This one, I dare say, is blind as a vampire bat:

An animal-welfare organization is trying to capitalize on the notoriety of serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer’s childhood home by suggesting it might turn the house into a vegan restaurant.

Ingrid E. Newkirk, president of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, sent a letter dated Friday to the realty agent who has listed the Bath Township house for sale. In the letter, she asked about the listing and proposed making the house a vegan restaurant “to respond to the past with something positive.”

Local officials were not encouraging, pointing out that the property is zoned single-family residential.

(Via this John Podhoretz tweet.)

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The drama’s done

Why then here does any one step forth? Because they can:

Emoji DickEmoji Dick is a crowd sourced and crowd funded translation of Herman Melville’s Moby Dick into Japanese emoticons called emoji.

Each of the book’s approximately 10,000 sentences has been translated three times by a Amazon Mechanical Turk worker. These results have been voted upon by another set of workers, and the most popular version of each sentence has been selected for inclusion in this book.

In total, over eight hundred people spent approximately 3,795,980 seconds working to create this book. Each worker was paid five cents per translation and two cents per vote per translation.

Talk not to them of blasphemy, man.

(Via Julie R. Neidlinger, who posits this publication as the definition of “mixed feelings.”)

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Notice the quilting

It’s a Northern exclusive:

Original or Ultra Northern Bath Tissue

There are, of course, alternative products. Consider, for instance, the recommendations of François Rabelais’ infamous (and hefty) Gargantua:

Once I did wipe me with a gentlewoman’s velvet mask, and found it to be good; for the softness of the silk was very voluptuous and pleasant to my fundament. Another time with one of their hoods, and in like manner that was comfortable; at another time with a lady’s neckerchief, and after that some ear-pieces made of crimson satin; but there was such a number of golden spangles in them that they fetched away all the skin off my tail with a vengeance. This hurt I cured by wiping myself with a page’s cap, garnished with a feather after the Swiss fashion. Afterwards, in dunging behind a bush, I found a March-cat, and with it daubed my breech, but her claws were so sharp that they grievously exulcerated my perineum. Of this I recovered the next morning thereafter, by wiping myself with my mother’s gloves, of a most excellent perfume of Arabia. [He continues in this vein for several pages.] But to conclude, I say and maintain that of all arse-wisps, bum-fodders, tail-napkins, bung-hole-cleansers and wipe-breeches, there is none in this world comparable to the neck of a goose, that is well downed, if you hold her head betwixt your legs: and believe me therein upon mine honour; for you will thereby feel in your nockhole a most wonderful pleasure, both in regard of the softness of the said down, and of the temperate heat of the goose; which is easily communicated to the bumgut and the rest of the intestines, insofar as to come even to the regions of the heart and brains. And think not that the felicity of the heroes and demigods, in the Elysian fields, consisteth either in their Ambrosia or Nectar, but in this, that they wipe their tails with the necks of geese.

(Original ad pronounced a “good buy” at Bad Newspaper. No geese were harmed in the preparation of this article, unless François wasn’t kidding.)

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Conclusion being jumped to

This perhaps may be unnecessarily alarmist:

CNN screenshot: Boeing 777 will struggle to maintain altitude once the fuel tanks are empty

After all, the plane will still have sufficient momentum to carry it all the way to the eventual crash site.

(Via American Digest.)

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A standard deduction, perhaps

A tax-preparation package has a fan:

[O]nce again this year I used the online version of TurboTax and if I was female, unmarried, forty years younger, and a science fiction character, I’d have TurboTax’s children. I heart TurboTax.

I have no idea which science-fiction character, of course. (Maybe Tam’s “Podkayne of Des Moines”?)

This ointment, however, contains a very distinct fly:

But their service is obviously designed for people of all, um, levels of sentience.

No, I won’t spoil it for you.

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Your mother should know

Fast-food joints are not out of ideas yet, but some of their ideas are not so hot:

Even before the first pie is delivered, a jalapeño-heavy pizza with a Mexican slang name has produced chuckles among Spanish speakers in U.S. border states and an advertising ban by broadcasters who say the moniker could get them fined.

The new dish called “La Chingona,” which can be translated most politely as “badass” but also interpreted as a more offensive profanity, has upset some franchise owners of the Pizza Patrón chain who refuse to put it on their menus.

Were I prone to digestive ailments, even “badass” is probably farther than I’d want to go.

National and local Spanish-language radio stations have refused to air the commercials, citing concerns about bad taste and potential fines by the Federal Communications Commission.

Univision Radio, the largest U.S. Hispanic radio network, said it will not run the ads because the name of the pizza is considered a profanity and violates FCC regulations.

Then again, this little teapot-scale tempest probably makes up for a whole lot of busted ad buys.

(Via Consumerist.)

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We need not take Kathleen home

She’s apparently busy at the moment:

I’m assuming this is some sort of smartphone.

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Mulch ado

You gotta give these guys credit for a little bit of enthusiasm:

Excitement is where you find it, after all.

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This explains the BLINK tag

Apparently we are even less tech-savvy than we think:

If you’re talking tech with Americans, you may want to avoid using any jargon.

A recent study found that many Americans are lost when it comes to tech-related terms, with 11% saying that they thought HTML — a language that is used to create websites — was a sexually transmitted disease.

Now we know why keyboard condoms are selling so well.

Perhaps more heartening:

77% of respondents could not identify what SEO means. SEO stands for “Search-Engine Optimization.”

When it gets to 100, we will have reached nirvana.

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When dictionaries won’t do

There’s more here than meets the eye, but not much more:

A British woman attempted to sue her former lawyers for professional negligence, claiming that, alongside a number of other allegations, they failed to advise that finalising divorce proceedings would inevitably cause her marriage to end.

The curious case — made against two solicitor firms — had already been rejected by the court, but was revealed in the transcript of a later appeal by the claimant against the dismissal of other aspects of her case.

Jane Mulcahy had argued that the lawyers should have made it clear that a divorce would cause her marriage to be terminated — something which she apparently wanted to avoid.

The solicitors, I suspect, thought this was perfectly obvious. But this was her issue:

The allegation was revealed in a subsequent appeal court judgment last month, in which Lord Justice Briggs said: “The most striking of Mrs Mulcahy’s many allegations of negligence against her solicitors was that, having regard to her Roman Catholic faith, Mrs Boots had failed to give her the advice which was requisite in view of her firmly held belief in the sanctity of marriage … either in terms of the alternative of judicial separation, or about the impossibility of pursuing divorce proceedings to a clean break settlement, without thereby inevitably bringing about the final termination of her marriage, which she wished to avoid.”

Mrs Mulcahy evidently remains divorced.

(Via this Doug Mataconis tweet.)

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Fingers faster than brain

Either that, or he meant to snub lesbians:

Tweet by Dan Patrick

Patrick, a Houston-area Republican who represents Texas Senate District 7 and who would like to be the next Lieutenant Governor, hurriedly pulled this tweet back and replaced it with one more to his liking.

Gaffe-tastic!

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Meanwhile in Kiev

Actually, it was this guy.

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Darn siblings

This month’s Maxim contains some nifty pictures of Laura Vandervoort, an “uncensored” interview with Fozzie Bear (!), and this woeful letter from the recipient of a gift subscription:

Last year my brother, Jack, gave me one of the coolest presents ever, a one-year subscription to Maxim! I was so excited, but month after month passed and I never received it. Finally I wrote your customer service team. Turns out the USPS postman was sending them back as “undeliverable.” I confronted him and found out that my brother had bought the subscription for Jacks Littlebitch. The postman found this offensive and has delivered only one magazine and refuses to deliver anymore until the name is changed. And we wonder why the USPS is going bankrupt!

I figure this carrier has a lot of free time. On my block, I’m very likely the only person who gets both Maxim and Out, which generally show up on the same day, and I have yet to hear a word about it.

Maxim’s advice: “Tell him you’re French and that your name is actually Jack Litt-Lebitch and that this is discrimination!” Yeah, that’ll work.

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Yolavero

Or, “I will have only lived once.”

And in the time of that life, it perhaps would not have occurred to me that #yolo, the hashtag, might have been a first-conjugation Latin verb, until I saw this, which admittedly is not complete.

(Via Fark. Working title for this was “Yolare, oh, oh.”)

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You don’t mess around with Raj

Joe dials up customer service, and is not happy with what he hears:

The guy who answered was clearly Indian (subcontinent, not reservation). He told me his name was Jim. He had a very thick accent and I was instantly pissed off. Not because he was answering from India, but because he claimed his name was Jim. Had he told me to call him Ganesh, or Raj or Anoop, or even Dhruv, I would have been fine.

By my own highly unscientific estimate, about a third of our 20,000 or so local residents with Pacific Rim ancestry — we don’t really have a lot of Indian-type Indians — have sort-of-English-sounding first names, and nobody thinks anything about it. Then again, they’re here and not a couple of continents over.

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One of those “weird tricks”

You may even have heard this on the radio. Steve Blow of the Dallas Morning News certainly has:

It’s a simple ad. No music or special effects. Just an announcer talking. But he speaks with an urgency that grabs your attention:

“If you’re a baby boomer or a senior, please listen closely to this important message. Politicians in Washington are quietly plotting to decrease your Social Security payments drastically. And they want to do it soon.”

This is consistent with current Washington policy, which is to beggar the middle class, buy off the proles, and enrich the elites; but Social Security’s third-rail status tends to insulate it from the worst governmental ideas.

Also current Washington policy: the War of All Against All. From that same radio spot:

“In fact, despite rising prices at the gas pump, grocery store and doctor’s office, retirees have received a mere 1.3 percent annual increase to their Social Security checks. Meanwhile, food stamp recipients have seen their payouts increase over 30 percent under the Obama administration. That’s shocking.”

Which latter was part of the dubious “stimulus package,” long since expired; SNAP has since been trimmed back a bit. But that’s not what they came to tell you:

“So when we stumbled upon a weird trick that could add up to $1,000 to your monthly Social Security checks, we knew we had to share it with you. To get started, simply go to [link redacted].”

And if you go there?

If you go, you’ll discover this is just a come-on to get your credit card number for a trial subscription to financial newsletters. And those newsletters tout even more government freebies.

Of course, those terrible people in Washington can take away those freebies more easily than they can cut Social Security, but you’re not supposed to know that.

And if you’re supposed to resent all those freeloaders on food stamps, yet you send away for all this stuff to get your very own government cheese — well, what does that say about you?

(Via this Jeff Greenfield tweet.)

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It’ll never replace Preparation H

A Twitter account called @SochiMadness turned this up from somewhere:

Alleged Sochi menu

I don’t even want to know what flavor this is. (First person who says “Packed Fudge Ripple” goes to the back of the community toilet.)

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Sea shells? See shore

Modest aspirations, these, or maybe not:

Yahoo Answers screenshot: I want to create a website for creating websites. like people can create website directly using that website?

Oh, he could probably do it, but I’d hate to see the documentation, which would inevitably read something like this:

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