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 usage of read, as in “read the riot act.”

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

Animation Update

bg frame wordstop wordbottom
plane prop

Action! Excitement! Special FX! Revised! Renamed! One more updated feature to add to our growing “New and Improved with Animation” collection. Featuring how most of what they show and tell you about how planes fly and the Bernoulli principle is just plane wrong.

How Planes Do NOT Fly –Bernoulli Baloney and Lift Demonstrations

Filed 5/4/18

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

Slim Pickings


Not very much under Recent Blog. So far. To own the truth, this spot of art ain’t very recent; it’s from 2001. Anyway, the rest of the recent entries are filed on the 2018 January–April page. If you want more, now you know where to go. To the “older” button just below.

home arrowL
older arrowR