Weigh Your Word Wonkiness


We haven’t done one of these bits in awhile. Then again, we haven’t done much of anything in awhile. Still, here you go. It’s an open question whether these words ever come in handy or you can use them in a sentence. Well, five different sentences. We can’t imagine the sentence that would use all five.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Transubstantiation (trăn səb-stăn shē-ā′ shən)

  1. Excuse to be a cross-dresser
  2. Conversion of a PC file to a Mac file and vice-versa
  3. Transformation from one substance to another
  4. Travelling around the world under water

Demesne (dĭ-mān′)

  1. Tiny and compact
  2. Really, really big yard
  3. Evil twin
  4. Having a hairy back and shoulders

Amanuensis (ə-măn′ yōō-ĕn sĭs)

  1. Sissy
  2. Baroque stringed instrument played with pedals
  3. Literary assistant
  4. Flaking off of dead skin cells

Votary (vō′ tə-rē)

  1. Devotee
  2. Person who tabulates election ballots
  3. Traffic circle without an exit
  4. Optional

Palpable (păl′ pə-bəl)

  1. Able to be paid online
  2. Flat as a pancake
  3. Easily turned to mush
  4. Tangible, easily felt, or obvious

Mouseover for answers

Transubstantiation (c) Transformation from one substance to another [Biblical, Transformation of wine and bread of the Eucharist]

Demesne (b) Grounds of a mansion or country house, estate

Amanuensis (c) Literary or artistic assistant, in particular one who takes dictation or copies manuscripts

Votary (a) Devoted follower, adherent, or advocate of someone or something, devotee

Palpable (d) Tangible, easily felt, or obvious

5 – Wowie-Zowie!
4 – Whoo-Hoo!
3 – Wonderful
2 – Well done
1 – Weak
0 – Woeful

Filed 7/13/18

Down Time


The terry colon point com staff has solved its defective keyboard issue and so… what? Just that. So what. Will we go back to three new bits a week? Maybe not. At this point we’re not sure we’re going to carry on with the pseudo-blog at all. For now we’re going old school. As in when we where in school and took the summer off. With the occasional addition when the mood strikes us. How often that might be there’s just no telling. We don’t know ourselves.

Filed 7/2/18



Why type in something new (see entry below) when you can cut a paste something old? Hense, an old Reason mag “Brickbats” from days gone by.

Community Action of Minneapolis is supposed to provide energy assistance, skills training, and other services for poor people. But a state audit found that it spent hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars over a two-year period on cruises, trips, spa treatments, a loaner car, and bonuses for staff and board members.

Perhaps it was skills training, leading by example.

Filed 6/28/18

Keyboard Glitch


For some reason the next to bottom row of keys on our keyboard are only sort-of working. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. Makes it hard to produce new content when every sentence contains numerous missing letter typos. To show you what we mean, here’s the headline and opening paragraph as they came out before we went back and added the missing letters:

Keyoard Glith

For soe reaso the ext to otto row of keys o our keyoard are oly sort-of working. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t. akes it hard to produce new content when every setece contains umerous missig letter typos…

Not Exactly easy reading. Until we get this sorted out, the reader will have to make do with the archives. Thank you for your patience.

Filed 6/26/18

A-a-a-h-h-h-h-h, Summer


The crab has arrived. As in Cancer. As in the Zodiak. While astrology isn’t our cup of tea, at least its divisions, unlike our conventional months, line up with the seasons. And they come complete with beings: bull, lion, scorpion, goat, twins and whatnot. Quite handy for illustrators. What do we get with our standard month names? Boring ordinal prefixes: sept, oct, nov, dec. Which don’t line up either.

So, what might the being or whatnot be for June? June was initially named Iunius. The name either comes from the Roman goddess Juno, wife of Jupiter, or from the word “iuniores,” Latin for “younger ones.” That’s our calendar for you; things don’t line up and we aren’t sure what it all means.

Filed 6/21/18

Sins Lite


Seven Not-Quite-Deadly-but-Still-Annoying Sins

  1. I-told-you-so-dom
  2. Butt-in-ski-ness
  3. Wise-ass-ery
  4. Know-it-all-itude
  5. Behind-your-back-ery
  6. I’m-special-osity
  7. Holier-than-thou-ity

To be honest, we’re not sure why the seven deadly sins are deadly. Sloth, gluttony, and lust don’t kill other people, they just make you a lazy, fat lecher. Calling them deadly might be overselling it a tad. Could be just an old-timey attention getting device before they came up with web ad teasers like…

Seven Horrible Habits of the Damned

Filed 6/20/18

Near Infinite D.I.Y. Blog Content


Pick the words from the pull down menus to form sentences for a fresh, unique terry colon point com blog entry of your very own. There are almost countless possible combinations. (Well, we didn’t count them, anyway.) Read ’em all! and we shouldn’t have to write another thing for months.

The the just like the the So don’t And you can quote yourself on that.

Filed 6/19/18

A Guy Walks into a Bar…


…at the track bumping into his old friend Frank.

“How’s it going?” he asks.

“Going? Want to hear something amazing? Tell me –what’s the date today?”

“July seventh.”

“Right. The seventh day of the seventh month. I arrived at the track at seven minutes past seven. My daughter is seven years old today, and we live in apartment seven, at number seven, Seventh Street.”

“Let me guess, you put everything you had on the seven horse in the seventh race.”


“And he won?”

Frank shrugged. “He finished seventh.”

Filed 6/15/18

Humpday Trivia

eel2 eel1

8 Shocking Facts about Electric Eels

  1. Electric eels aren’t actually eels, but a knife fish, distant cousins of carp or catfish
  2. Unlike true eels, theses South American river dwellers come to the surface to breathe
  3. Its vital organs are in the front 20 percent of its body while the rear 80 percent contains some 6000 cells acting akin to tiny batteries
  4. An electric eel can discharge around 600 volts
  5. They are practically blind and navigate by employing a radar-like system of electrical pulses
  6. An adult eel can be up to eight feet long and weigh 44 pounds
  7. Nobody can resist using the word ‘shocking’ when writing about them
  8. Every shameless artist will have flashing lightning bolts in any cartoon of an electric eel

Filed 6/13/18

Doctor O

Obama1 Obama2 fadeL fadeR

An old bit of art from Reason magazine’s “The Best of Brickbats during the Obama Administration.” Only this time the nameless, faceless minions are animated. The spot is a few years old, but better late than never. Then again, depending on your politics, you might have rather it had all been never.

In 2008, officials in Tempe, Arizona, said they needed more housing for deaf senior citizens. So with the aid of $2.6 million from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Cardinal Capital Management and the Arizona Deaf Senior Citizens Coalition built a 75-room apartment building just for the elderly deaf. The apartments have lights that flash when the doorbell rings and other amenities designed for the hearing-impaired. But then, in 2012, HUD said that because management prefers to rent to deaf tenants, the building violates federal civil rights law. The agency demanded that the owners take steps to make sure that 75 percent of residents of the building are not deaf.

In Ontario, people donated some 40,000 pounds of aid for victims of the 2013 Oklahoma tornadoes. But U.S. Customs and Border Protection said it was a commercial shipment, which meant each food item had to have a certificate from the Food and Drug Administration. After a three-day delay, officials finally allowed the food into the country.

The Secret Service forced hundreds of children with cancer and their parents out of Lafayette Square Park in Washington, D.C., disrupting a planned vigil. The park was barricaded for hours, and families were not allowed to get back in to retrieve their belongings. Parents said agents told them they closed the square because President Obama had left the White House from a nearby exit.

An Obama administration official reportedly got into a fistfight with a Native American college student over a Washington Redskins shirt the student was wearing. Barrett Dahl says William Mendoza, executive director of the White House Initiative of American Indian and Alaska Native Education, approached him, called him stupid and uneducated for wearing the shirt, and attacked him when he turned to walk away.

Officials at Salem High School in Plymouth, Michigan, agreed to take down bleachers paid for and built by parents for the school’s baseball team. After an anonymous complaint, the U.S. Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights found the school was in violation of federal law because the baseball facilities were then superior to the girls’ softball field. The school couldn’t afford to upgrade the softball field, so it had to remove the amenities at the baseball field.

Officials in cities across the nation were caught off guard by a ruling by the Environmental Protection Agency that said fire hydrants must meet new, stricter lead-content rules for plumbing fixtures. Officials said that meant the hydrants and hydrant parts they had already bought couldn’t be installed after January 4, 2014. The new rules were supposed to reduce lead in drinking water. It took an act of Congress to stop them from going into effect.

The National Park Service has removed merchandise with the Confederate battle flag from all of its bookstores and gift shops –including the ones at Gettysburg National Military Park.

Supervisors at Veterans Affairs medical facilities in seven states ordered their employees to falsify records to make it look as if the wait times for veterans seeking help met V.A. standards. And employees in several other states were doing so without explicit commands. In all, employees at V.A. facilities in 19 states and Puerto Rico manipulated data on wait times for up to a decade, according to a USA Today report.

A 4-year-old boy from Alameda County, California, was one of 18 defendants suing to have their names taken off the federal government’s terrorist watch list. The boy, identified in court papers only as Baby Doe, had been on the list since he was 7 months old.

Filed 6/11/18

Court Jesters


Court TV imagined forty years ago by The Two Ronnies before there was Court TV. Once again, as is often the case, the original was much better. And funnier.

The Two Ronnies Courtroom Quiz –Video

Filed 6/4/18

Your Wednesday Words of Wisdom


Nobody but terry colon point com brings you Wednesday Words of Wisdom complete and uncut, on Thursday. That’s us, a day late and a dollar short. Remind us later we owe ourselves a buck. Without further ado, those promised wise words.

I felt sorry for myself because I didn’t have a pair of shoes, until I met a man who didn’t have two pairs of shoes.

—Ol’ Remus,

Filed 5/31/18

Your Humpday Ha


Q. What is the biggest lie in the whole wide world?

A. “I have read and agree to the Terms and Conditions.”

Filed 5/30/18

For Entertainment Purposes Only


How many grumpy old men does it take to screw in a light bulb?

None. The lightbulb can screw itself.

Filed 5/29/18

Coming Soon: Neo Ice Age


You may have missed the news, but global temperatures have gone down 0.5 degrees in the last 24 months. That’s at a rate of five degrees per decade. As the average temperature of an ice age is ten degrees cooler than today, if the trend continues we will be in a new ice age in twenty years. Now that would be an inconvenient truth.

Don’t Tell Anyone, But We Just Had Two Years Of Record-Breaking Global Cooling

Filed 5/21/18

It’s All in the Packaging


One last spot to close the week. It’s not an old rerun, it’s a restored classic.

Filed 5/18/18

Our Two Party System Explained


They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Need we say more? This bit of old pretty much tells the whole story.

Filed 5/16/18

News Feed


A bit of old art to start the week. Because the more things change the more they stay the same, everything old is new again, and some things never change. And now that the New York Times has baldly declared Marx was right… well, we know the source of “All the news that’s print to fit.”

Filed 5/14/18

What’s in a Name? Really. What Does Yours Mean?


Though we don’t think of it much, names have meanings. For instance, what you do for a living: Carpenter, Cooper, Smith, Weaver. People don’t much name them­selves after their occupation these days. Though there are thousands of new, modern jobs to be named after. Instead of Smith, the most common name now might be Book­keeper, Pencil­pusher, or Drudge. Still, it’d get confusing if you changed your last name every time you switched jobs.

First names have meanings, too. These are more obscure than surnames, people don’t know or care about their meanings anymore. It’s just a personal label our parents dubbed us because they liked the sound of it or what­ever. That’s why a lot of people now have novel, totally made up, meaningless names. Check out an NBA team roster to see what we mean.

Ten Olde Names and Their Erstwhile Meanings

  1. Natalie –Birthday (As in natal)
  2. Sylvia –Living in the woods (As in sylvan)
  3. Felix –Happy (As in felicity)
  4. Melanie –Dark (As in melanin)
  5. Dolores –Lady of sorrow (As in dolorous; sounds like a bad pun but there it is)
  6. Portia –Pig (As in porcine)
  7. Calvin –Bald (As in… uh… we don’t know)
  8. Quincy –Fifth in a series (Don’t name your kids, number them)
  9. Cameron –Crooked nose (It’s a Gaelic thing)
  10. Alfred –Advised by elves (Old English ælf + ræd or rede*)

As you can see, names weren’t always very complimentary. Some are just plain weird. Name your kid Birthday? Guess goofy hippie names predate goofy hippies. Did Alfred the Great really have a council of wee folk? What kind of parents name their daughter Pig? Makes you wonder what the heck your parents named you, eh?

*Ræd or rede go back to an old oral usage of read, as used in “Read him his rights.”

Filed 5/11/18

Know Your Nomenclature


Another Wednesday, another multiple choice word definition quiz. Need we say more? Hope not, because we don’t have any more. On to the quiz.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Minatory (mĭn′ ə-tôr ē)

  1. Walk-through maze
  2. Like a bull in a china shop
  3. Not as big as life
  4. In the nick of time
  5. Meaner than a junkyard dog

Venal (vē′ nəl)

  1. Of deer meat
  2. Drunk on wine
  3. Willing to sell out
  4. Of dirty sex
  5. Type of plastic

Afflatus (ə-flā′ təs)

  1. Water borne litter
  2. Birth of a notion
  3. Bluster
  4. Seven year itch
  5. Ghost

Pecuniary (pĭ kyōō′ nē-ĕr ē)

  1. Weird
  2. South American rodent
  3. Borderline legal
  4. Monetary
  5. Peevish

Dilemma (dĭ-lĕm′ ə)

  1. “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t”
  2. “Between a rock and a hard place”
  3. “Heads I win, tails you lose”
  4. “Can’t win for losing”
  5. “There is no good answer”

Mouseover for answers

Minatory (e) Menacing; threatening

Venal (c) Open to bribery; mercenary

Afflatus (b) Divine creative impulse or inspiration

Pecuniary (d) Of or relating to money

Dilemma (c) Predicament with two equally bad options (While c is perhaps closest, any of the choices could be seen as essentially correct. Making this entry something of an antonym of itself, a choice between equally good options.)

5 – Aced it
4 – Solid B
3 – Wobbly C
2 – Generous D
1 – Inglorious E
0 – Suspicious F, you couldn’t have gotten the last one wrong

Filed 5/9/18

The Overblown Legend of Pelé


Just ask anyone; Pelé was the greatest soccer player ever, hands down, no argument, period! Then they’ll trot out these two bullet points of evidence:

Let’s look at those from the bottom up. Single players do not win World Cups, teams do. Team championships are a feeble measure of one players ability. Was Yogi Berra the greatest baseball player ever because “he won the World Series” more than anyone else, ten times? Were Ted Williams, Ty Cobb, and Hank Aaron lesser players because their teams didn’t win any?

Pelé did little to help Brazil win the cup in 1962, he was injured and scored all of one goal. Basically Brazil won the World Cup without him. Thing is, Pelé was never the top goal scorer in any World Cup he played in. In 1958 he scored six, while Just Fontaine netted 13. In 1966 (also injured) he scored one, while Eusébio had nine. In 1970 he scored four to Gerd Müller’s ten and teammate Jairzinho’s seven.

Now then, what about those 1,283 goals? Pelé officially scored 757 goals in 812 games. The other 526 goals came in unofficial friendlies and tour games, including when he played for the Sixth Coast Guard in the military competition. That’s like including Babe Ruth’s spring training, off-season touring and barn­storming homers in his career total. We’d guess that to be about 1,283 home runs.

Even so, many of Pelé’s 757 official goals came against third-rate teams in Brazil’s state leagues. These leagues comprise all the pro teams within a state, regardless of level. Imagine a California Baseball League with the five major league teams, five triple-A teams, five double-A teams, and five A teams. Bobby Bonds probably wouldn’t have needed steroids to knock out 80 dingers a year against that competition.

Who might be better than Pelé? As of this writing Cristiano Ronaldo has notched 652 official goals and Lionel Messi has racked up 611. Ronaldo is 33 years old and Messi is 30, both have a pretty fair chance to surpass Pelé’s career goal mark. And against better competi­tion.

Then there’s the “Galloping Major,” Ferenc Puskás, who scored 84 goals in 85 international games for Hungary. In the Hungarian and Spanish leagues he notched 514 goals in 529 matches. You might also consider Sporting Lisbon’s Fernando Peyroteo who in the 1930s and 40s amassed 539 goals in 334 official games. That’s an amazing 1.61 goals per game. In 1946-47 he tallied 43 goals in 19 games, 2.26 goals per game.

Ferenc Puskás

Fernando Peyroteo

Pelé the greatest soccer player ever? You may want to rethink that. By our reckoning he ranks maybe number five.

Filed 5/7/18

It’s Frivia Wednesday


“The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog,” is undoubtedly the most famous pangram in English. A pangram is a sentence containing all twenty-six letters of the alphabet. Still, it isn’t the only one, and at thirty-five letters is not the shortest, either.

Top Ten Other Shortest Pangrams

  1. The five boxing wizards jump quickly. (31 letters)
  2. Pack my box with five dozen liquor jugs. (32)
  3. The quick brown fox jumps over lazy dogs. (32)
  4. Quick brown foxes jump over the lazy dog. (32)
  5. Pack my red box with five dozen quality jugs. (36)
  6. The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dogs. (37)
  7. Who packed five dozen old quart jars in my box? (37)
  8. My girl wove six dozen plaid jackets before she quit. (43)
  9. Few black taxis drive up major roads on quiet hazy nights. (47)
  10. A quick movement of the enemy will jeopardize six gunboats. (49)

So, what’s the point of a pangram, one might wonder. It’s simply a sample of every letterform of a typeface as text. More imaginative than simply listing them, abc…xyz. Even though it ain’t much of a story.

Filed 5/2/18

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