Archive for the ‘The Lighter Side’ Category

Wit and wisdom on church signs

September 16, 2017

These photos of church signs were collected on the Bored Panda website.

(more…)

A cat watches Alfred Hitchcock’s “Psycho”

August 26, 2017

Two versions, in case one is taken down or has too many pop-ups

A third version below matches the kitten’s reaction with the scene.

(more…)

The fine art of telling a joke

August 5, 2017

The only things I know about how to tell a joke is to pause before I state the punch line, and to emphasize the words in the punch line that are the point of the joke.   But there’s a lot more to it, as this analysis of a Louis CK joke shows.

In praise of dullness

July 8, 2017

Some 35 years ago, there was an International Dull Men’s Club whose chairman was J.D. Stewart, a statistical analyst for Eastman Kodak Co. here in Rochester, New York.

That was in 1982, a year of peak dullness and boring prosperity for both Rochester and Kodak.   Since then Kodak has gone bankrupt, which has made life around here more “interesting” in the sense of the ancient Chinese curse.

The club was formed largely as a joke, but with an underlying idea of honoring people who enjoy mundane things and who do mundane but necessary work.

Stewart would do things like publishing a list of the 10 dullest Americans (including Don Rickles, Gerald Ford, Lawrence Welk, Walter Mondale, Fred Rogers and Garfield the cat) and proposing seminars on topics such as “dressing to break even” and “non-assertiveness sensitivity training”.

The video above shows how the Dull Men’s Club concept has been revived in Great Britain.  The club blog is devoted to safe excitement, an outstandingly dull concept.

I do have to say that the British devotion to dullness is incomplete.   The new Dull Men’s Club is devoted to unusual hobbies, some of which seem actually interesting.

There is a woman whose hobby is to follow brown road signs, wherever they might take her.  That could lead to actual adventures, which is contrary to the spirit of dullness.

(more…)

A brief entertaining history of everything

May 20, 2017

This video by Bill Wurtz is fun and, as far as I can tell, well-researched and accurate.

Hat tip to Jason Kottke, who also linked to Wurtz’s video history of Japan.

Donald Trump’s Russian admirers

May 17, 2017

The Easter bunny caper

April 16, 2017

Source: Medium Large.

Astronaut vandalism

April 3, 2017

Source: xkcd

Sign of the thymes

March 25, 2017

Image via mlkshk.

Bertrand Russell’s shortest book

March 4, 2017

gaberbocchus932386487-0

Click on HISTORY OF THE WORLD in epitome (for use in Martian infant schools), and scroll down, to read the text and illustrations.

(more…)

A joking Dutch message to Donald Trump

January 27, 2017

Update 2/14/2017.  You also can click on this to view the video.

(more…)

Everybody needs a hug

September 17, 2016

00tigere931b69e-e89c-4bc2-8762-4cd548f91556

Hat tip for these to Elizabeth Mummert and Joyce Mummert Ireland.

7ac12d99-a693-4ff7-86a4-5a5cab2da84d

.

24dd7ebd-d797-4a4e-9723-7fdd20b7cd0b

(more…)

When (if ever) will Donald Trump self-destruct?

August 8, 2016

It’s a good thing we have photographic evidence of Bill Clinton and Donald Trump being in the same room at the same time.

Otherwise you could really convince me that after a blowout electoral loss on Nov. 8, “Trump” will walk onstage and pull off a rubber Scooby-Doo-type mask to reveal that it was really Bill Clinton all along, acting like the dumbest candidate in the world, just to guarantee that Hillary Clinton got into the White House.

The real Donald Trump is somewhere tied up in a Brooklyn, N.Y., basement, guarded 24-7 by Clinton surrogates, wondering why he’s allowed food and drink but no access to Twitter.

That’s more believable than the idea that out of all of their options, Republicans nominated a Gold Star-family-attacking, non-party-endorsing, baby-kicker-outer to face off against an ethically challenged policy wonk who barely connects to her own party’s base.

Source: Jason Johnson | The Root

In the early days of Donald Trump’s candidacy, I never thought he would get the Republican nomination.  I thought he would soon do or say something so offensive and outrageous that his followers would turn against him.

I’m still waiting for that to happen.

The daily news cycle seems to go like this.

  • Donald Trump says some shocking and offensive thing.
  • Washington press corps and respectable politicians denounce Trump for shocking and offensive thing.
  • Donald Trump refuses to back down from shocking and offensive thing.
  • Next day: Donald Trump says or does another shocking and offensive thing.

DonaldTrumpInstagram(JPEG Image, 1160 × 629 pixels)What Trump manages to do with all this is to keep public attention focused on himself.   He says so many shocking and offensive things that it is hard for the ordinary busy person, who has a job and family responsibilities, to keep them straight.  What remains is an impression of Trump as a strong person who doesn’t back down.

Hard-core of Trump supporters believe anything and everything he says, including that President Obama is a secret Kenyan-born Muslim socialist and that Muslim sharia law is a real and present danger to the USA.   There is no way to convince them of anything different because they are not interested in separating truth from falsehood, and have no criteria for doing so.

Their support is what Nassim Nicholas Taleb calls anti-fragile.  No matter what Trump’s opponents do or don’t do, their faith in him grows stronger.

Another group supports Trump not on his merits, but because they think anything is better than the status quo.  The more he outrages established politicians and journalists, the better they like it.  The size of this group is a measure of the failure of American government during the past 15 or so years.

By the standards of the past, Trump would have been a fringe candidate, as would Bernie Sanders.  Their strong showings are due less to their own qualities than to the discontent of the American public.  I don’t think Trump supporters’ will cease to be angry at the status quo because Trump makes disrespectful remarks about a Muslim Gold Star mother.

(more…)

Funny signs at the Los Angeles Zoo

July 30, 2016

9

A prankster named Jeff Wysaski left these fake “animal facts” all over the Los Angeles Zoo.

6

(more…)

Yes, they are

May 7, 2016

desktop-1424116673

Source: eBaum’s World.

An example to live by

April 23, 2016

If you can always be cheerful, ignoring aches and pains,

If you can resist complaining and boring people with your troubles,

If you can eat the same food every day and be grateful for it,

If you can understand when your loved ones are too busy to give you any time,

If you can take criticism and blame without resentment,

If you can conquer tension without medical help,

If you can relax without alcohol,

If you can sleep without the aid of drugs,

(more…)

If Sir Isaac Newton had a Smartphone

April 21, 2016

isaacnewton.smartphonet

Via Nusaireyat.

An Abraham Lincoln quotation for today

April 1, 2016

April 1

A musical instrument based on 2,000 marbles

March 26, 2016

Via bored panda.

Martin Molin, of the Swedish band Wintergatan, built this machine, which uses 2,000 marbles to make music.  It looks like an Animatron video, but it is real.  It is made out of manually-operated levers, pulleys and wheels, mostly wood but including some Lego parts.

Hat tip to Avedon’s Sideshow.

Our eight-legged friends

March 19, 2016

humey-toons-toon-16-spiders-540

I set out ant and roach traps, but I never interfere with spiders, except maybe to brush away an overly conspicuous cobweb.  Spiders catch and eat bugs I want to get rid of, so why should I treat them as nuisances.  It would be as foolish the United States government picking fights with countries that are  fighting ISIS and Al Qaeda.

So I enjoyed reading An Open Letter From a Spider to All Humans Everywhere and maybe you will, too.  (Hat tip for the link to Mike the Mad Biologist)

Sculptures that look impossible

March 12, 2016

statue-cairo

These photographs, which I got from my high school classmate Joyce Mummert Ireland, remind me there are other things in life besides politics.

impossible-sculpture1

Click on 25 Mind-Boggling Sculptures That Defy The Laws of Physics (not really) for details and more sculptures.

appearance-emptiness

THE ANGRY MAN: a poem

February 27, 2016
Phyllis McGinley

Phyllis McGinley

By Phyllis McGinley

The other day I chanced to meet
an angry man upon the street —
a man of wrath, a man of war,
a man who truculently bore
over his shoulder, like a lance.
a banner labeled “Tolerance.”

And when I asked him why he strode
thus scowling down the human road,
scowling, he answered, “I am he
who champions total liberty—
intolerance being, ma’am, a state
no tolerant man can tolerate.

“When I meet rogues,” he cried, “who choose
to cherish oppositional views,
lady, like this, and in this manner,
I lay about me with this banner
till they cry mercy, ma’am.”  His blows
rained proudly on prospective foes.

Fearful, I turned and left him there
still muttering, as he thrashed the air,
“Let the intolerant beware!”

The secret of Donald Trump’s hair

February 26, 2016

How-to-Get-the-Donald-Trump-Combover-Look

Evolving Trump

Trump’s evolving hair

Donald Trump, according to biographer Michael D’Antonio, had an abiding fear of growing bald.  This wasn’t the image he wanted to project to the world.

Starting about 30 years ago, his hair become thicker and thicker, and blonder and blonder.

Trump always denied that he wore a wig or that he had hair transplants.  In 1990, a Time magazine reporter interviewed New York hair stylists about how the Trump look could have been achieved.  The diagram above is the result.

A role model?

A role model?

Many men three decades ago would have thought Trump was strange for devoting so much time and attention attention to altering his hair.  Now both men and women dye and shape their hair without embarrassment.

Trump’s distinctive hairstyle has served him well.  It has become part of his brand.  Because of his hair, Trump is instantly recognizable.  He would not be confused with somebody else.

The hierarchies of knowledge

February 21, 2016

fieldsbypurityXKCD435-650x270

xkcd-purity2-by-sansscience-creativecommons-attribution

I lifted these two cartoons from the Biology vs. Theoretical Physics post on the Sans Science web log, which is now private.

The top cartoon is, of course, from Randall Munroe’s xkcd series.

How should you tell the temperature?

February 16, 2016

xkcd.degrees

Source: xkcd