Science Leaks

Not only does Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper muzzle government scientists, but now in a strange new twist he has begun taking the limelight for their discoveries.

One of the ships from the 1845 Franklin Expedition was found. The Franklin Expedition was sent to find a Northwest Passage from Europe to the western Americas or even Asia, through northern North America. This passage was never found until the modern era. Expeditions were foiled by ice and the other problems of the Arctic.

The scientists probably worked on this discovery for years. Stephen Harper traipsed on the scene very recently and suddenly he’s pronouncing a success. It now looks like Stephen Harper is promoting science when in reality he is a bigger driver of slowing science down.

Muzzling scientists and keeping them silent ruins transparency. Transparency is important so scientists can avoid unnecessary duplication and extreme specialists can keep tabs on their field from all over the world.

You may agree with keeping some science top secret and thus not transparent. This may be a wise thing to do but it surely slows science down. Suddenly all countries must have a team unnecessarily duplicating every other countries’ teams. Science and technology advance more quickly when everything is shared.

So might I suggest a new internet and world presence. It would be called Science Leaks. Maybe this organization would be best represented by an Ecuadorian, maybe someone named Jillian A. Sanchez. Sanchez would do best to have expertise in computers, politics and of course science. We pick a female because one is less likely to have real or imagined sex crimes against her.

Government scientists of any country would be encouraged to leak the science they feel should be part of the world conversation. This definitely includes Harper’s Canadian scientists working in the climate change field. Science would progress faster because of the sharing.

And if Sanchez were to be trapped in say the Icelandic embassy in Australia, she could simply point to military secrets that were also leaked to the site but withheld to maintain world stability. How zealous would America, Britain and Sweden be in prosecuting Sanchez if say all stealth technologies might be made freely available to the world? Science Leaks might have more teeth.

Posted in Politics, Science, Wry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

) @ ^^ ^, I’m Good

I like to think of this site as having a sort of offbeat yet highbrow humour. But search results cut my ego down to size. One of the most popular searches that leads to this site is: “spelling sh*t with symbols”. Well I may not be highbrow, but I know when I have been popular and how to replicate that. So today we learn to spell d*mn with symbols.

I of course gave it away in the title of this post. There is a trick to using these symbols. I use two carets (also known as ‘hats’) for the m and one caret for the n. The trick to making them look like letters is to use a space between each. So I’ve used a space between all four ‘letters’. So thus we have: ) @ ^^ ^ , and of course thinking back to our earlier $#!+, we can get ) @ ^^ ^^ ! + .

These are good for using your typewriter’s keyboard. But to get that ultimate swear word we have to search far afield for different symbols. For the F, I say we start in music with the bass clef symbol. This symbol actually is an F but is so stylized I think we can get away with it. The symbol is such that the line between the two dots that represent the arms of the F is the note F. (Indeed, in the more popular treble clef, that symbol is a stylized G and where you finish drawing the G is on the line that stands for G.)

The U might be represented by the symbol which represents the short vowel in English. The C can of course be represented by ( . I have no way I know of for making a symbol K. If anyone has ideas say so in the comments. But sounding out the word makes the K almost unnecessary. Thus we have the misspelt word as:


H*ll is the last of the big five swear words. I could take the easy route and let you know that it can be spelled upside down in LCD lettering by 7734. The 4 doesn’t work out on most computers and software. I could fix it with the pound symbol, which also contains an upside down H. Thus we have 773#. Still, I think we might be able to do something right side up.

Decades ago during my childhood, we had an old typewriter that contained the pound symbol. I mean the symbol for the British pound currency. It was a stylized L which ought to be good for our Ls. The North American pound symbol or the number symbol might be on British keyboards, too, and thus be used for the H since it contains an H. The trick here is that I’ve always thought ampersand looks sort of like a curvy E. Thus, someone with a British keyboard might be able to spell out:


We North Americans will have to draw it out because, alas, our computer keyboards can’t make this either.

So what is the point of all this? Maybe we can hack the old strategy of substituting swear words with random symbols. This was usually done in the comics to allow kids to know that adults are swearing but not actually using the words. So all you comics artists out there, won’t those kids be surprised when they turn a little older and find meaning in those symbols? Won’t adults be angry when you slide this in for their kids? Don’t worry, if you lose your job I hear that drawing for a more adult market is more fulfilling anyway.

So due to the bad nature of my ultimate intent, perhaps I should have called this piece: ) @ ^^ ^, I’m Bad. But Michael Jackson has corrupted bad into meaning good, so as you see we are stuck with the original title.

Posted in Humour, Language | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Does Nature Equal Cats?

doesnature=catsSo does nature = cats ?

Yes, if nature demands you feed and water it, clean its litter, and pet it if it is so inclined.

Posted in Cartoon, Science, Wry | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Homophone Poem

“Don’t tarry Terry,”
Said hairy Harry,
“Parry Perry,
Bury Barry,
Carry Carrie,
And marry Mary!”

While this homophone poem may have been observed in the past, it might have been uncovered in another accent where bury might not be a homophone of Barry. So at least one line might be different. It seems my ears have heard brrrree from some people.

Posted in Humour, Language, Writing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Yuk! Mint!

Let’s look at brushing our teeth. First of all we are supposed to brush after every meal according to dentists. But, as well, we are supposed to leave 20-30 minutes after our meal before brushing. And it is common European practice to eat more than 3 meals a day. And in fact my doctor here in Canada suggested I eat more than 3 meals a day, but to just have less at each meal. Bye, bye all-you-can-eat meals and brunches.

My point in these two factors is that toothpaste is more likely to interfere with the enjoyment of your next meal because you will have brushed your teeth within sight of your next meal. I think this is close enough to interfere with the meal. Ask yourself the question, “Does mint really go with everything?”

Which brings me to the question, “What do professional tasters do about the interference of mint toothpaste to the palate?”

I found some threads online where it was suggested that tasters would use non mint toothpaste. Elsewhere I think it was a wine taster (but I didn’t see credentials) who said that he does not brush his teeth in the morning before a tasting. He was quick to say that he brushes his teeth at night. But even this begs the question, “Doesn’t morning breath interfere heavily with the tasting?”

Wine tasters are one thing. But you would think there would be professional tasters for everything, especially packaged and prepared food. I couldn’t find one definitive site or even many sites partially covering this question. So now I wonder if it’s being kept secret from the public and of course the food preparer’s competition.

I can think of a few approaches. One would have the taster use mint toothpaste just like the vast majority of consumers because that is the environment the food is going to be consumed in. Or tasters might not brush their teeth in the morning for a day they are working. Is it possible to have an unflavoured toothpaste? I know some people use baking soda toothpastes. Does that have to have a flavour? Or perhaps the best minds in the country are working on toothpastes whose flavours break down really quickly but still provide cleanliness and decay protection.

Then, too, there is this article which states that most toothpastes contain sodium laureth sulfate or something very similar. This chemical creates the foaming action of toothpaste which makes everything afterward taste bad. How long afterwards would this effect a sensitive taster?

Certainly everything doesn’t pair well with the taste of mint. And it is getting harder and harder to find other flavours in grocery stores, pharmacies or even big box stores. I guess the sensitive will have to use the internet. But I’m not bullish on this idea.

Because I thought I could come up with more answers. But in this case the internet has let me down.

Perhaps the internet toothpastes can list pairings of food along with which flavour of toothpaste goes best with it. After all since there are similar pairings with alcohols this might catch on and help their businesses. That’s what the future should bring.

Posted in Social Science, Wry | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Something in the Air

People might try to pass it off as some sort of coincidence, but last year the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks made it to the Superbowl. That is the teams from Colorado and Washington state. These are the two states that legalized pot.

Now I don’t know why football players who can smoke pot play better, it’s just something that happens. I know most of you are going to poo poo my conclusion but just allow me to ask this: why did the New York Times editorial board reveal a pro pot position just months ago? Again, coincidentally, New York City has the most American football teams of any city with the Giants and the Jets.

Good football teams sell papers. Lots and lots of newspapers. It’s the stories and the stats that bring this about. The New York Times wants good local teams hence their pro pot stance. They don’t want to see dynasties develop in Seattle and Denver. New Yorkers are nothing if not ambitious.

Also making football news this year is the possibility of the Buffalo Bills moving to Toronto and thus making American football truly international. It kind of is already with the former ownership of the Bills letting Toronto host one game a season already.

But now that the pot connection has been made in football, I don’t see Toronto as a prime host of American football. Toronto doesn’t want a team doomed to failure because you can’t smoke pot in Ontario.

More likely the places that would add international flavour to American football would be the city of Amsterdam, the island of Jamaica or the province of B.C. Pot might not be legal in the province of British Columbia but that is only because the politicians are lagging far behind the populace. I suspect a change is on the horizon soonest.

But this new open, football winning society might be at risk. They test Olympians for any performance enhancing drugs. It would be a small thing to test NFLers for pot smoking. Of course Olympian Ross Rebagliati’s excuse will probably wear very thin when all the winning NFLers say simply that they were nearby when pot smoking occurred.

I know some people wish to see the best American football possible. In that case some legalization of pot seems to be in order.

Post Script: By the way I’m not a total pot advocate. For instance there seems to be a smoking gun in that pot can trigger mental illness like schizophrenia. Any legalization must take that into account so pot could perhaps have a high legal age of consumption since schizophrenia tends to hit younger people more so than older people.

Posted in Humour, Politics, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Brave, Brave Donald Trump

Brave Donald Trump proved that he is indeed in the home of the brave, by bravely pressing some buttons on Twitter and uttering an opinion. In a nutshell this brave man dared to oppose a sitting government.

Bravely the Donald wants Americans to leave all Ebola patients in Africa. Bravely he pointed out that Ebola fighters, who try to slow down the current outbreak in Africa, know the risks so should be banned from treatment in the good old USA.

Bravely the Donald also wants flights from those impacted countries to stop immediately.

Two Ebola fighters have been taken in by the sitting government and given experimental treatments on US soil. Bravely the Donald opposes this.

Implicit in the brave Donald’s position is a willingness to cut off American research to stop or slow the spread of Ebola. Those two Ebola fighters are being used to test the experimental treatments under controlled conditions in the USA. If the Ebola fighters had been kept out and flights had been banned from impacted areas (as the Donald wishes), it is obvious that the Donald wants the whole American scientific effort to halt.

And if a new illness starts in the good old USA, I expect brave Donald to stay put and expect full travel restrictions on himself and his fellow Americans. Gleefully and bravely he might find that those outside countries don’t bother trying to cure that new scourge in the USA. Only then might the brave Donald be pleased. Bravely pleased, that is.

Posted in Humour, Politics, Science | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bigger Hogs

I wonder if it’s just my imagination or if the average motorcycle is actually getting bigger. Now some people may be concerned with noise so they might want smaller motorcycles. I say let the motorcycles get bigger.

You can’t blame the biker. After all they just want something bigger between their legs. But in my bigger motorcycle stance there is something that some motorcyclists might not like.

I wouldn’t want motorcycle engines to grow. They have enough c.c.’s as it is. I want the size of motorcycles’ mufflers to grow. I want the muffler to be so big and efficient that it makes the motorcycle sound like the tiny whine of a gas sipping compact car.

For too long the world has only felt sorry for those people with houses close to the airport. I say we extend that sympathy to those on common motorcycle roadways. Those people suffer just as much. Just not as badly in the winter.

While having this idea in my head, I came across this article that talks about motorcycle noises beginning to be regulated across Canada. This article takes the sensible view that motorcycles along with loud cars (in my estimation there are 19 loud motorcycles per every loud car) should be subject to the same noise regulations.

But I personally think that since some noise proponents are taking the fireworks defence, I say we go there, to the fireworks offence.

Fireworks in most of Canada seem to be regulated to being used on three evenings of the year – Victoria Day, Canada Day and New Year’s Eve. So maybe motorcycles should only be used three evenings a year and let’s make sure that one of those evenings is in the middle of winter.

To me the fireworks offence should be legislated from sea to sea to sea. Then, perhaps I won’t ever feel that familiar shaking of the whole street caused by a single rider on their motorcycle.

Posted in Humour, Politics | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Nice Day for a White Wedding

Let’s say that a couple bonded around the sport of tennis. So they could have their wedding in that sport’s shrine -say Wimbledon- for sheer, high class points.

Right after the tournament is over and the rest of the crowd has filed out, the wonderful ceremony could begin. Since many of the guests may be from outside of London, you would want to make the date coincide with the finish of the women’s or men’s championship. This classes up the event even further. Since Saturday is the people pleasing wedding day, it would be best to hold the wedding on the date of the women’s final.

The guests would see the new woman champion be crowned as well as the marriage of their loved ones.

But most importantly, Wimbledon being Wimbledon, the bride might be expected to become the bridezilla of all bridezillas. You see, Wimbledon insists on its competitors wearing such predominantly white clothes that any tiny splashes of other colours on the white need to be preapproved by the proper tennis authorities.

So at least the winner and 2nd place of the tournament will be wearing enough white to upstage the bride. Indeed white is common even for the spectators of tennis. Maybe many, many more spectators will be draped in white.

All this white will lead to much fury, anger and invective unleashed by the bride. She might rant for hours. Then maybe, just maybe, all that pent up emotion released on such a wedding day will drain the bride. So complete might be that draining that the entire rest of the marriage might only see the bride being sweet. And that may be the happy ending from such a classy, memorable wedding day.

Then, too, the bride may save her anger for whomever told her about the Wimbledon wedding idea. I mean really, who looks to the internet for classy ideas, especially those sites which freely mention something about rants in the very title? But isn’t this small possibility worth the chance of that truly happy marriage?

Posted in Fashion, Humour, Sports | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Most Beautiful

Unmentionable magazines are fond of generating publicity by having a list of the most beautiful or sexiest people in the world. It drives magazine sales, produces a lot of link love and just plain old publicity for the publication. Indeed, I’m surprised all magazines don’t try to break into the party. Why, I just entitled this post “most beautiful”, shouldn’t advertisers be beating down my door to be associated with this post?

I would just like to point out one thing. These carefully collected and hotly contested lists have one very simple trait. They consist almost exclusively of film or television actors. Let’s examine that for a moment.

Let’s say you achieve the dream of being in a relationship with one of these actors or actresses. And they are good at their craft. If they cheat, they will likely be able to effectively lie their way out of it. Some of these actors even have trophies saying they can lie their way through most situations.

Film actors go off to shoot in exotic locales all over the world. Now I’m not certain that gives them motivation to cheat, but it certainly provides opportunity.

Alright,alright, the dream of being in a relationship with an actor that can easily cheat isn’t so good, but why not assume they’re going to cheat and just beat them at it?

Then, when the day comes when they try to trip you up – they can. They’ll say, “Well I appreciate how you tried to pull the wool over my eyes and realized that nothing less than method acting would do. Your excuse was that you were taking auctioneering classes MWF and you were just taking them every Monday. At first I thought you were a bit slow but you were really cheating Wednesday and Friday. Nothing less than some commitment to the lie would have helped. Kudos. But I’m cutting you out of my life forever.”

An actor may be incredibly attractive. But my conscience can only recommend them for one night stands.

So when checking out those magazine covers with all those sexy actors or actresses, remember the magazine isn’t so hot, those people are only for flings. So step away from those magazines. I said step away. Okay, okay. I bought one earlier because I knew I was going to do this rant and wanted one final reminder of the most beautiful.

Posted in Fashion, Humour, Stage and Screen | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment