Every few years, I take a sabbatical from posting. One is due, shortly. This notification is made so that my blog friends won't besiege Bogie with questions as to my health. Hunky Husband and I are in great health!
Blog friend Darlene frequently contributes (thoughtful and funny things) to other peoples' blogs - and - when not too busy doing that, communicates via email. The following is what appeared in my email "in" box, today. Thank you, Darlene!
Washington Post's Mensa Invitational once again invited readers to take any word from the dictionary, alter it by adding, subtracting, or changing one letter, and supply a new definition. Here are the winners:
1. Cashtration (n.): The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period of time.
2 Ignoranus : A person who's both stupid and an asshole.
3. Intaxicaton : Euphoria at getting a tax refund, which lasts until you realize it was your money to start with.
4. Reintarnation : Coming back to life as a hillbilly.
5. Bozone ( n.): The substance surrounding stupid people that stops bright ideas from penetrating. The bozone layer, unfortunately, shows little sign of breaking down in the near future
6. Foreploy : Any misrepresentation about yourself for the purpose of getting laid..
7. Giraffiti : Vandalism spray-painted very, very high
8. Sarchasm : The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.
9. Inoculatte : To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
10. Osteopornosis : A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
11. Karmageddon : It's like, when everybody is sending off all these really bad vibes, right? And then, like, the Earth explodes and it's like, a serious bummer.
12. Decafalon (n.): The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
13. Glibido : All talk and no action.
14. Dopeler Effect: The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.
15. Arachnoleptic Fit (n.): The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.
16. Beelzebug (n.): Satan in the form of a mosquito, that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
17. Caterpallor ( n.): The color you turn finding half a worm in the fruit you're eating.
The Washington Post has also published the winning submissions to its yearly contest, in which readers are asked to supply alternate meanings for common words.
And the winners are:
1. Coffee, n. The person upon whom one coughs.
2. Flabbergasted, adj. Appalled by discovering how much weight one has gained.
3. Abdicate, v. To give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.
4. Esplanade, v. To attempt an explanation while drunk.
5. Willy-nilly, adj. Impotent.
6. Negligent, adj. Absentmindedly answering the door when wearing only a nightgown.
7. Lymph, v. To walk with a lisp.
8. Gargoyle, n. Olive-flavored mouthwash.
9. Flatulence, n. Emergency vehicle that picks up someone who has been run over by a steamroller.
10. Balderdash, n. A rapidly receding hairline.
11. Testicle, n. A humorous question on an exam.
12. Rectitude, n. The formal, dignified bearing adopted by proctologists.
13. Pokemon, n. A Rastafarian proctologist.
14. Oyster, n. A person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.
15. Frisbeetarianism, n. The belief that, after death, the soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.
16. Circumvent, n. An opening in the front of boxer shorts worn by Jewish men
As most of my blog friends know, 1) I no longer belong to Facebook because I became concerned about their privacy policies a couple of years ago, and 2) I'm not in the business of promoting goods and services. That said, I was led by Slashdot.org to do a little (and I do mean little) checking on a service that is similar to Facebook. The service, out of Canada, is Syme.
Here is a link to, followed by excerpst from, one of the articles that I found on Syme - from PC World's website:
It may be the just the right time for Syme, which is now open to all after an invite-only beta trial. The technology industry, shaken by former NSA contractor Edward J. Snowden’s revelations of large-scale surveillance efforts by the U.S. and U.K., is looking for better ways to shield user data from prying eyes.
Law enforcement agencies around the world are also increasingly filing requests for data to companies such as Facebook and Twitter, who are compelled by law to turn over data, sometimes without informing users.
Appropriate for a privacy-centered service, “Syme” is named after a character in 1984, George Orwell’s chilling novel describing total state control. In the book, Syme was “vaporized” for being a free-thinking individual.
Syme’s user interface is refreshingly free of clutter. A bell icon, which shows the number of unread notifications, and a cog icon, to adjust settings, are both very similar to Google Plus. It has a “Like” button, just like Facebook
People register Syme accounts using an email address, and Syme can see which users have communicated with each other. It also knows when posts were written, when someone connected to Syme and the size of transferred files or photos. Hershon cautions that Syme is undergoing peer review and should not relied on for the transmission of super-sensitive messages
Before I got too excited, I found that, "So far, Syme has built an extension for Google Chrome with ones for the Firefox and Safari browsers in the works, as well as mobile applications for iOS and Android...." Note that it does not now support IE8, which is what I use.
I like words. I like the way they sound, I like their subtle shades of meaning, their power, and most particularly, their ancient roots, their origins. For example, I recently became fascinated with the rather routine word 'miscellaneous.' To begin with, it really sounds great. Miscellaneous. I dare you to say it out loud and not smile. Plus, you can just forget its meaning and have fun with it. "Miscellaneous, miss a lot." Then consider its long journey from the Latin 'miscere' (to mix), to its current form. How did miscere become miscellaneous? Whose idea was it to drop the 'ere' and add the 'ellaneous?' And why? Were they drunk? Was it some sort of strange speech impediment that caught on with the general populace? Or more likely, did the French get hold of it and decide to do what they do best - unnecessarily fancy it up? Makes you think, right? And speaking of the paths words take to arrive at their current form, how can anyone not be entranced by the rocky road traveled by the old Germanic word ' f i c k e n ' (to move back and forth)? Was it first used in carpentry? "Grab the other end of this saw and we'll ficken it across this log." Or is it the Teutonic ancestor of 'fickle'? "First you say we should sack Rome, then you say we shouldn't. Boy, you are one ficken barbarian." [**CENSORED**]
I've experienced so little (as in, none that I recall) spam on this blog that I had forgotten its existence - except in commiserating with some of you who have lamented your own spam problems. I'm getting my come-uppance! The TypePad spam filter had been working so efficiently that I was oblivious. Until recently!
Recently, I've had a problem trying to comment on my own blog. And...I've heard from Stu that his comment had disappeared. The TypePad people had to remind me that there was a spam filter. Having checked the filter a few minutes ago, I find that many of you have been subjected to the bad manners of my spam filter.
Please forgive me!
TypePad and I are working on the problem. Hopefully, we'll soon be back to normal. In the meantime, this blog will operate as if I had activated comment verification rules. I will have to publish each comment that gets caught in the filter. It is interesting that Bogie & Buffy are seemingly golden. Their comments don't get caught up in the filter!
P.S. As the time span that comments are retained in the spam filter is only a few weeks long, I note that the recoveries that I've made this morning go only as far back as Technical postings from Slashdot.org!
P.P.S. If you wish to compare notes: From 3/21/2013 until the current time, there have been 108 truly spammy comments that were caught by the spam filter - nearly 2.25/day.
Added on 1/20/2014: All of the above was originally posted on 5/9/2013.
I didn't know how bad it would get. Now, routinely, I get 200-300 spam comments each day - nearly all having to do with prescription drugs and cigarettes. Do I look like a druggie to you?!!! (I've never been a smoker.) Stu's are the real comments that most frequently get caught in the spam filter. It doesn't look like TypePad is able to get things really fixed. I would let NSA read everything I ever wrote, in a heartbeat, if the payoff was that all spam would disappear from the internet. I'm dreamin'.
Yesterday, some of my friends missed the most amazing Google Doodle that I've ever seen. Here, through the magic of YouTube are two videos of the doodle. I don't know if the sound track has been added; but, there was no sound to the doodle that I was watching, yesterday. Note, too, that, in the upper video, the whole doodle is not displayed in the video - only the PDA and its surrounds. Enjoy!
Finally, on Day 12, I am feeling well. My voice is strange; but, I went out to fill bird/critter feeders, this morning, and Hunky Husband (much against his better judgement) took me out to lunch. (We ended up at Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers place, up the street a couple of miles. Wow! I must be well if I can eat junk food, again!) Herein, below, are snippets from some of the blogs/websites that I've visited today.
Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs by Mo Willems. Balzer + Bray (September 4, 2012). Ages 4 and up.
Kids love Mo Willems as much as they love dinosaurs, so this book is like the chocolate and peanut butter of children’s books. This is his deliciously ridiculous riff on the traditional Goldilocks story, with three dinosaurs setting out bowls of pudding to lure a tasty little girl into their home for dinner.
Without violating copyright laws, it is difficult for me to define "portmanteau"; but, I'll give it a go. A portmanteau is similar to a contraction in that it represents a combination of two or more words/word sounds into a single word whose meaning combines the meanings of the original words.
Example of a contraction: "shall" plus "not" contracts to "shan't".
Example of a portmanteau: "Spanish" plus "English" combines into "Spanglish".
No one cares, but I ran into "portmanteau" in relation to "sparticle" which is a shorter word for "supersymmetry" plus "particle". Another portmanteau is formed by combining "supersymmetry" with "parner" to form "superpartner".
Aren't (are not) you glad that you asked?
I'll not bore you by going into morphemes; but, for those who are familiar with them, I'll agree that the sounds combined in a portmanteau need not be whole words, but may be morphemes.
While we were being kept awake by firecrackers and fireworks set off by people in our neighborhoods, the scientists at CERN were celebrating, themselves. However, they were not (repeat: NOT) celebrating the finding of the Higgs boson as has been reported through many of the media. They were celebrating the detection of a particle that is consistent with (and may, in fact, turn out to be) the Higgs. Below are a couple of articles from CERN's own website. Please note the careful wording that is used.
Proton-proton collision in the CMS experiment producing four high-energy muons (red lines). The event shows characteristics expected from the decay of a Higgs boson but it is also consistent with background Standard Model physics processes (Image: CMS)
At a seminar on 4 July, the ATLAS and CMS experiments at CERN presented their latest results in the search for the long-sought Higgs boson. Both experiments see strong indications for the presence of a new particle, which could be the Higgs boson, in the mass region around 126 gigaelectronvolts (GeV).
Both ATLAS and CMS gave the level of significance of the result as 5 sigma on the scale that particle physicists use to describe the certainty of a discovery. One sigma means the results could be random fluctuations in the data, 3 sigma counts as an observation and a 5-sigma result is a discovery. The results presented today are preliminary, as the data from 2012 is still under analysis. The complete analysis is expected to be published around the end of July.
An important piece of news that almost got lost in the excitement of the Higgs update seminar on 4 July is that the 2012 Large Hadron Collider (LHC) proton run is to be extended.
The current LHC schedule foresees proton running reaching a conclusion on 16 October, with a proton-ion run scheduled for November. In the preliminary new schedule, proton running is planned to continue until 16 December, with the proton-ion run starting after the Christmas stop on 18 January and continuing until 10 February. With a final Higgs update for 2012 scheduled to be given to Council during the week of 10 December, an early Christmas present in the form of new insights into the discovery announced last week could be on the cards.
Reason enough to run the above posting is the beauty of the photos that CERN released!
ATLAS - A Toroidal LHC ApparatuS
CERN - Conseil Européen pour la Recherche Nucléaire (French for European Council for Nuclear Research)