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Kumquates. Or maybe rhutabaga. The jury is still out.

June 21, 2015


I’ve always found something funny about the word kumquat. And apparently, so do most people in the English speaking world. Yet despite this near unanimity, none of us can say why. Kumquat is just an inherently funny word. The same is true of rutabaga. They’re funny words. If I tell you that a dog overturned […]

Passing on the traditional ways from father to son

June 21, 2015


“Take a close look at the shape of the terrain in front of you,” he said. His son, roughly five years old, looked up at his father’s face, and then studied the small dips and gullies that could be animal tracks. Or not. “I’m not sure I see anything,” he said in a small voice. […]

Chapter One: Serenity will have to wait

February 1, 2014


Originally posted on Adramelech Defects:
Have you ever had the feeling that cartoon physics make more sense than real-life physics? For instance, if you’ve just run off a cliff but haven’t noticed yet, shouldn’t you be able to continue running in a straight line for a while until looking down to see nothing underfoot? Or…

Fred’s Maid: What should we call her?

October 12, 2013


Every actress of lasting note has been bequeathed a special name by her fans. Clara Bow was “The It Girl,” Lauren Bacall was “The Look.” Marilyn Monroe was “The Blonde Bombshell.” Veronica Lake was “The Peek-a-Boo Girl.” You get the idea. So what special name should we give to Fred’s Maid? She was born as […]

Abortion put simply

March 22, 2012


Introduction [NOTE: This article is also available for download in a relatively attractive, illustrated PDF format: Abortion put simply.] Recently the abortion debate has reared its unattractive head again, largely inspired by the Texan “House Bill 15” requiring pregnant women to undergo a sonogram before having an abortion. Sonograms offer extremely detailed images, making the […]

How many pollsters does it take to screw in a light bulb? Part two.

August 17, 2011


Previously — How many pollsters does it take to screw in a light bulb? Part one. ———————————- The previous post ended with a look at the way results can get skewed when respondents try manipulating the polls. Another form of manipulation is the “social desirability bias,” although here, rather than trying to manipulate the polls, respondents are […]

So who, exactly, IS in the details?

August 12, 2011


“God is in the details.” “The devil is in the details.” So which is it? As it turns out, God got there first, but I guess that’s only fitting, what with being the Prime Mover, First Cause, and The Guy Who Always Butts In Line Ahead of Everybody Else Because He Thinks He’s So Bloody […]

Magical Secrets Part 2

July 29, 2011


Magical Secrets Part 1 If you’ve not already done so, pop over to Midget Man of Steel’s post (actually a guest post) and see the video there on the magic powers of the IRenew Bracelet. Done? Good. ————————————————————– I first ran across the amazing strengthening arm trick at a 1989 psychic fair in Malton. I […]

Larson comic in the real world

June 26, 2011


Here’s the Larson comic. And then the other day I drove by this. It’s located just outside Port Colborne on the site of an old A&W.

The unity of existence: a manifesto

May 23, 2011


Mystics have always told us that all the universe is alive and conscious. This idea is embodied most famously in various Eastern and Native mystic traditions, including the Islamic concept of the “unity of existence” (wahdat al-wujud). Such a belief lends itself towards treating the material world around us with respect, to show it consideration, and […]

Hallowe’en Horror

March 20, 2011


This post is the continuation of a previous post titled, “In which I start to tell a story, but then have to tell another story first“. In that post I said that the next story starts on Hallowe’en, but it actually started one week earlier. It was the denouement that occurred on Hallowe’en. It was seven days […]

This is what happens when you start unpacking boxes

January 10, 2011


About two-thirds to three-quarters of our library is now out on shelves. We’re going to go through them and try culling the deadwood, but a cursory glance tells me it’s not particularly hopeful. In among the boxes of books, however, are boxes of papers: some art work, some notes for a philosophy book I’ve been […]