Ringading dandy

Thank goodness spumoni was never involved. Things really could have gotten ugly.

Published in: on September 23, 2017 at 7:49 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , ,

Made for walking

And that’s just what they did. One of these days these boots are gonna get this kitten hid.

Published in: on September 21, 2017 at 6:14 pm  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , ,

Just talking with my mouth

I never watched Clutch Cargo, so I was unfamiliar with this “Synchro-Vox” animation system. It is really quite a thing.

Published in: on September 16, 2017 at 9:46 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , ,

Word of the day for Friday, September 15th

Today’s word is neat, but it opens a Pandora’s box of other neat words so this post is going to be sort of a mess. Just to tell you. So the word is

apoculamus. Sorry if you can’t read it in the graphic above. It doesn’t really matter, maybe, because nobody is absolutely sure what it means. It’s a Latin word, and it has only been found once in all of Latin literature. It’s something called a hapax. A hapax is a word that only occurs once… in a book, in everything an author’s ever written, or everything that’s ever been written.

Some of these words of course cease to be hapaxes, because other people take them up – Shakespeare’s “bedazzled” and his somewhat lesser known “honorificabilitudinitatibus” come to mind. And others, like the ancient Greek “polemophthoroisin” coined by Aeschylus, have never been properly defined. How do you define a word that has only ever appeared once? As for the version of a hapax that occurs only once during a writer’s career, do you think you have one? I wonder what mine is. I probably have a few, seeing as I collect these words and then sit on them like a level 3 hoarder.

You can read more about hapaxes in an excellent article on Atlas Obscura here. As for apoculamus, etymologists are reasonably sure that it means “we haul ass out of here.” Haul ass and go forth with your weekend, friends.

Published in: on September 15, 2017 at 6:59 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , ,

Etiquette & superstition: spitting

When Benny and I were on vacation a few weeks ago, we stopped in to a motel that we weren’t sure was of the highest caliber. I stayed in the car while Benny went to check out the room, and as I looked up to the second floor balcony, some motel guest spat down onto the driveway. I grimaced. The spitter noticed and stared at me a long while. Then he went inside. We wound up staying in the room directly below his. Nothing bad happened to us that night.

ETIQUETTE: Spitting in public is no longer considered an acceptable practice anywhere in the world. Seriously. It’s not. Read the signs. Everyone everywhere is telling you not to spit in public. You can spit in public if you are tasting wine, if you have inadvertently swallowed a bug, or if you are a camel. Otherwise, keep your fluids to yourself until you can find some privacy. At the very least, spit into a tissue or handkerchief.

“But what about Greek weddings?” you may be saying. “They spit at Greek weddings.” No, they don’t. Not really. They go ftoo ftoo ftoo. Don’t actually spit at the bride. For pete’s sake.

SUPERSTITION: Spit from a fasting person will cure boils, blindness,birthmarks and ringworm. Spit from an angry dog or a weasel is poisonous, and spit from a person who has been tickled to death may be lethal. A person’s spit contains a portion of his soul, so you may or may not want to spread that stuff around, but spitting will ward off the evil eye, and will even get rid of the Devil if you spit right between his horns. Practice your aim, friends.

Photo by darwin Bell on Flickr

Laugh, mouse, laugh

This cartoon kind of reminds me of a movie I worked on a long time ago called The Legend of Flashpants. That movie ended more tragically than this one, though, and there was less singing. The female love interest wasn’t as fickle, either. Okay, maybe this cartoon has nothing in common with The Legend of Flashpants except for a mustachioed guy trying to explode his rival onstage. Moving on.

And the rest, 2017 edition

From my last two posts whooping and hollering about the amazingness of some different lands that we visited, you might get the impression that I don’t appreciate the USA. That would be wrong. I love a place that has this merry-go-round sign for a Chinese restaurant

and this giant polar bear casino

and this crazy pastime

and this sign

and this fish ladder

and so much more that there’s no way I can include even just the best stuff from a four-state road trip in one post. I love you, USA. This isn’t a popularity contest. Chill out.

Voice choice

Hey everybody! It’s Billy Murray, the Denver Nightingale himself, providing the voice of Talkie in this cartoon. You say you don’t know who Billy Murray is? Man, know your onions. He’s a real lalapazaza.

Published in: on September 2, 2017 at 10:14 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , ,

For those about to rock, please place $6 in the donation box

The Republic of Molossia was not the only magical land Benny and I traveled to last week. We also visited the monuments and islands of the Petersen Rock Garden near Bend, Oregon. I was excited to go there, but the photos I saw prior to our visit really didn’t prepare me for the scope of the place. Maybe my pictures won’t do it justice either.

This place was built by a Danish immigrant in 1935 or so using unusual rocks that he had collected from around the general area. I’m not sure if he meant for the place to be a land unto itself, but it sure seems like it. There are miniature houses

of varying levels of grandeur,

a patriotic monument

or two

and even a separate island area guarded by a lighthouse

and some peafowl.


There was a cat who was trying to give us a tour, I guess,

and a chicken who was being rather show-offy about being able to walk around the moated mansion that had been roped off from us humans with caution tape


(actually, there were a lot of chickens – a lot),

but no other humans anywhere. At least none that were willing to come out and talk to us.

It’s too bad the museum was closed because I hear that inside there are little castles made out of rocks that glow in the dark. Oh well. Maybe next time.

I hope there is a next time, actually. There seems to be a lot of controversy about this place lately, around who is running the place and whether they’re greedy creeps or good stewards who are just overwhelmed by regulations and the enormity of maintaining the place. The garden keeps closing and being saved and closing again.

It’s open now, albeit in a bit of a state of disrepair. And as with all things, the future is unclear so if you want to see this place I would suggest you make a trip there soon.

Geography, astronomy, music, history

On Monday, Benny and I saw the solar eclipse at a high school football field in the Idaho Cascades. A girl named Phoenix organized a big viewing festival with the local school STEM club, and there were telescopes and pinhole box viewers and hamburgers and European tourist families and a cute boy playing a soulful acoustic rendition of “I’m Sexy And I Know It” on his guitar and a big countdown to the totality that was off by a few seconds. It was pretty nice. There was a rundown trailer down the road with a brand-new Confederate flag hanging from it, but mostly there were people being happy and excited and community-minded. It was a good day.

This cartoon reminds me a little of the whole experience, I guess. Let’s see if we can outshine ignorance.

%d bloggers like this: