13 Sept. 2006
SETI League
PriUPS Project



Remarkably, this blog has achieved a full half-year of existence.  That's just like a half of a year, but doesn't the "full" make it sound more impressive?  No, I suppose not.  I've accumulated the odd bits of correspondence about blogitems previous, and I thought I'd share them before they grow fully obsolete.

Subject: Re: The traffic flow in NYC
From:  Kathy
How about a designated "drive like hell" lane? make the lanes closer to
the curbs more suburban, The "At Business Lanes", and the middle one
the "On A Mission Lane" -- no-holds barred, take your chances, accept
the risk (no complaining about fenderbenders allowed) and go for it. A
little single sliver of "Dodge City". Wah-hooo!


Deb on "A Deep Subject"
Wow. Picky, picky, picky! -- and you can post that as a comment under Mr.

Indeed.  I fear he is just laying low and waiting until my blog license expires.  I'm always looking over my shoulder, but I've gotten away with it thus far.

Paul on Oxymoronicity
> Richard wrote:
> > Oxy, meaning "sharp," and moron, meaning "dull," is the
> > etymology.
> Aha --- I didn't know the origin! Given that, we can still replace
> "moron" with "genius," but only if we find a suitable antonym to
> subsititue for "oxy." Let me float "fumygenius" (in the sense of the
> Latin "fume" being that which impairs one's cognitive processes,
> rendering him/her dull).


Terry (of the olives) with regard to Sequences

shih-tzu dogs come in "toy" and "teacup" sizes

A discussion with Deb with respect to My Sockret

John and I are HUGE fans of Smartwool socks. When we find our sizes and
styles on sale we always stock up since, unfortunately, they do not last

Our philsockophies are totally different! I don't have a "style," I just want socks. And now I've got 'em!

> Recently, they were bought by Timberland. Consequently, L.L. Bean said they
> would stop carrying them as soon as their stock ran out. :(

Are you sure they're serious? Normally the socks don't run out by themselves.

> Hope all is well with you in sock land.

For the next decade, at least! Thanks for asking.

Bill, whom I thank periodically for reminding me to excise inapposite apostrophes

Today: "informed me of it's presence".

I even find myself writing this, then going having to back and fix it,
it's so insidious.

I was just reading John W. Campbell's "The Moon is Hell", published by
Fantasy Press in 1951, and it's full of misused "it's"es, about 50% of
the time. Drove me nuts.


Richard Factor wrote:
> You're my apostrophe hero! '"It's"es' is quite the punctuational
> conundrum.

Even worse now!

Note:  I reserve the right, not that anyone's trying to steal it from me, to make tiny editorial corrections of individual blogitems without noting same in a "follow-up."  There's no smaller correction than removing an apostrophe.  I do try not to RETCON my blogs without notice, which word I recently discovered and which will receive its own blogitem some day.

Bob, offering a Snow Blower suggestion less likely to result in ignominious blog termination

> Regarding Blog of 07 August 2006: Please use a hair dryer, as long as you have AC available.

Thanks for the suggestion! It might have worked, but would have made a lousy story. And, I honestly didn't think of it. I spend a lot more time contemplating desserts than I do thinking about hair. What's left of mine is self-drying.

Bill, on the Brainy RV, but who clearly and perversely must have watched the video:

Winnebago loans an RV known as the "brain bus" to Jeopardy; that's good.
Smirnoff has a white guys rapping video; that's bad.

You missed this one from CNN: "Kittens dipped in grease saved from
frying pan".


Tracy, on the same subject, who clearly did not:

> Okay, so to attempt to be really cool, I have tried to decipher the
> headline Brainy RV def but preppy white posse's whack. and here is what
> I have:
> Brainy -- means guy who sill stop at nothing to get the attention of
> girls who are way out of his league. Brain also refers to oral sex
> performed on a man.
> RV -- means Rape Victim, as in someone who looks shabby or ugly. Also
> means a recreational vehicle
> Def -- Da bomb baby! Means real good. I didn't have to look that one up.
> Preppy -- Refers to those who are preppy; wearers of labels, the
> opposite of punk or goth
> White -- colour but not in a racist term, also refers to cocaine or
> heroin in its purist form
> Posse -- dude thems mah peeps, my crew, runnin wid my posse, wes kickin
> it in mah crib....group of friends richard...(I knew that one too)
> Whack -- really crazy (knew that one too)
> So what does that sentence mean?
> I have no idea!

Your coolth is 100% bound-free. (I actually did get an interpretation
from Bill, but I think he looked at the video.)

So that would make "brain" a synecdoche of a metaphor of a euphemism.

From Deb regarding the Monversometer

> Boy! Were you right on time with this one. Can you make one that gently
> shocks (or not so gently) someone when his or her monologue runs longer than
> 5 minutes, or if they keep going without breathing?  I could use that with two people I'm thinking of right now.

A new feature! Join me on the patent.

> By the way, you still didn't say what that license plate initials stood for
> in your blog.

No, I haven't. Although I did get one semi-inspired guess.

Proof from Abe that the John H. Winn Chemical Company existed:

> Yup, bought lots of stuff from them mostly by mailorder. Was in the store in NYC twice.
> No your not imagining the place it did exist but the only trace of it on the internet is here:
[expired eBay link]
> A listing for a book that they published.
> "Magic Chemistry"
> "Book of Experiments for Junior Chemists"
> "Chemical Magic. How to make inks and paints. Electroplating and
> Electrotyping. Glass blowing. Food Analysis. Household Chemistry."
> Instruction book from a chemistry set.
> Vintage, probably late 50s or early 60s?
> * Published by John H. Winn, New York
> * Dedicated to Thomas Alva Edison
> * 80 Pages in black and white with many line drawings.

Hi, Abe!

Thanks! I'm going to add the photo from that listing
to a follow-up on that page. I guess being an eBay listing it
wasn't there when I did my first search. Glad you found it.

A guy at work who lived in Brooklyn growing up also remembered
them. If I get anything even more interesting I'll add it to the
blogitem (which I did do, see the bottom).

David: Your post (about the Brookhaven reactor) ended with some optimism:

Ms. Rowe kindly responded:
"The short answer is that the tritium plume that originated from the
spent-fuel pool of the High Flux Beam Reactor has over time continued
to attenuate as expected. The HFBR is now permanently shut down."

Which I take to mean that no expensive cleanup is or was necessary.


In short, a mob of torch-bearing, pitchfork-wielding townfolk managed
to shutdown a fine scientific instrument over the amount of
radioactivity found in a tritium-powered exit sign. At taxpayer
expense, of course.

Ms. Rowe was not overly communicative, having just returned from a personal trip.  Even so, she might have mentioned the torches and pitchforks but apparently felt that was just a minor fillip, unworthy of disclosure.  I'm pleased to have a more nearly complete rundown.

Bob, who actually repairs microwave ovens instead of using them for planters, reports:

> Sorry to drop this on you, but WRT the Microwave oven, either Sharp or
> Sanyo had just the feature (un-advertised) you address in the blog.
> I can't vouch for this feature being continued in any newer ones,
> 'cause I am still using an old Sharp Convection/Microwave that was built in 1984.

Sigh.  I've wanted a money bin ever since I found out that Scrooge McDuck had one.

Richard Factor