# Monday, 24 August 2009

Heaviest Element Yet Known to Science: (Gv)

Note: If you’ve read the Dull Men’s Club post, then this is the age-old joke that was mentioned at the beginning of it. I know it’s old, but it’s pretty good all the same. There are a few variations going around, but this one seems to be the most comprehensive.

Lawrence Livermore Laboratories has discovered the heaviest element yet known to science.

The new element, Governmentium (Gv), has one neutron, 25 assistant neutrons, 88 deputy neutrons, and 198 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an atomic mass of 312.

These 312 particles are held together by forces called morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles called peons...

Since Governmentium has no electrons, it is inert; however, it can be detected, because it impedes every reaction with which it comes into contact. A tiny amount of Governmentium can cause a reaction that would normally take less than a second, to take from 4 days to 4 years to complete.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of 2- 6 years. It does not decay, but instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places.

In fact, Governmentium's mass will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause more morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes.

This characteristic of moron's promotion leads some scientists to believe that Governmentium is formed whenever morons reach a critical concentration. This hypothetical quantity is referred to as critical morass.

When catalyzed with money, Governmentium becomes Administratium, an element that radiates just as much energy as Governmentium since it has half as many peons but twice as many morons.

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Dull Men’s Club

I was just sent a brand new, up-to-the-minute joke e-mail, and wanted to check if it was decades old as I suspected, or merely just a few years old instead. Whilst wasting more time than I have available, I came across one of the best web sites I’ve seen in a long time. The Dull Men’s Club is dedicated to all things dull and ordinary, and is well worth spending a few hours reading.

Amongst some of the prime content, is a page dedicated to dull collections and museums. This info and links for some museums that you would never have believed existed. My favourite is the (apparently) World Famous Asphalt Museum, which contains samples of asphalt from all over the world!

Even better is the amazingly useful list of airport luggage carousels, which lists loads of luggage carousels around the world and - sit down before reading this – tells you which way they rotate! I can’t believe I’ve been on this planet for so long and lived without this information!

The web was made for this kind of site!

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# Sunday, 26 July 2009

Four little girls

The Boss had just finished feeding Chaya Devoira, and Simcha wanted a cuddle. Chana Liba came in to ask something, and jumped on the bed to join them. Within seconds, Shayna Brocho came looking for Chana Liba, spotted what was going on and joined in. The result? Four little girls bli ayin horo...

Four little girls

Chaya Devoira looks a little surprised, but given that she had just finished a good feed, and was expecting to settle down for a quiet cuddle, who can blame her?

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Fun things to do with a leek – and you can eat them as well!

some leeks todayChana Liba was looking in the fridge for some fruit just now. Obviously confused, she asked “Hey, what’s that?

What’s what?” I replied (yeah, we have very deep conversations in our house!)

That big green thing that’s white on the end” she replied.

With all the intuition of a mother, I replied “It’s a leek.” (Shakespeare would have been sooooo jealous of dialogue like this :-))

As she was still looking rather blank, I asked “Do you know what it’s for?” which elicited a slow shake of the head.

I went over to the fridge, and removed the rather oversized leek from the shelf. Holding it carefully at the white end, I proceeded to thwack her gently on the tochus several times, whilst explaining that this was what a leek was for.

For some odd reason, this turned out to be the funniest thing she had experienced for some time, and she burst into uncontrollable fits of giggles. This of course encouraged me even more, and so began the Great Smile Gemach Leek Thwacking Event.

I chased her around the house, thwacking her whenever I could, whilst she tried (not very hard) to escape. After I was all puffed out, she grabbed the leek and started thwacking me! Shayna Brocho, not wishing to be outdone, grabbed it off her and started thwacking both of us. Simcha, not quite sure what the fun was all about, but not wishing to miss a moment, came hurtling down the hall after us, and the four of us ended up running around the house, and outside into the courtyard. Thwacking a few surprised-looking small children along the way, we made our way around the courtyard and back into the house, taking turns to grab the leek and get thwacking.

This went on for some time, until we all finally ran out of breath and flopped back in our chairs (we were supposed to be eating at this time). The leek, looking somewhat worse for the experience, went back into the fridge, and would have remained there, except that Shayna Brocho decided it was time for some more thwacking! She grabbed it and started bashing me over the bonce with it. This of course started the whole thing off again, resulting in several more rounds of leek thwacking.

By this time, several sections of leek had become somewhat detached from their original place of repose, and were used as secondary thwackers by those not in charge of the main instrument of thwackeration. This allowed Mummy and Nechoma Bryna to fall victim to the Zealous Leek Thwackers of Salford (or the Zltos as they didn’t become known).

Maybe this wasn’t what Hashem had in mind when He invented the leek, but it’s rare that four people can have so much fun for 70p! Visit your local supermarket and enquire about large sized leeks, you won’t regret it :-)

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# Thursday, 23 July 2009

Latest Jewish words

Well, whilst I was cleaning out my inbox of long-forgotten joke-bearing e-mails, I came across this collection of new Jewish words. Bet you haven’t heard of some of these eh? See how many you can work into the conversation over the next few days :-)

  • Jewbilation (n.) Pride in finding out that one's favourite celebrity is Jewish.
  • Torahfied (n.) Inability to remember one's lines when called to read from the Torah at one's Bar or Bat Mitzvah.
  • Santa-shmanta (n.) The explanation Jewish children get for why they celebrate Hanukkah while the rest of the neighbours celebrate xmas.
  • Matzilation (v.) Smashing a piece of matzo to bits while trying to butter it.
  • Bubbegum (n.) Candy one's mother gives to her grandchildren that she never gave to her own children.
  • Chutzpapa (n.) A father who wakes his wife at 4:00 a.m. so she can change the baby's diaper.
  • Déjà Nu (n.) Having the feeling you've seen the same exasperated look on your mother's face, but not knowing exactly when.
  • Disoriyenta (n.) When Aunt Linda gets lost in a department store and strikes up a conversation with everyone she passes.
  • Goyfer (n.) A Gentile messenger.
  • Hebort (v.) To forget all the Hebrew one ever learned immediately after one's Bar or Bas Mitzvah.
  • Jewdo (n.) A traditional form of self-defence based on talking one's way out of a tight spot. Also what bagels are made of.
  • Mamatzah Balls (n.) Matzo balls that are as good as your mother used to make.
  • Meinstein - slang. "My son, the genius!"
  • Re-shtetlement (n.) Moving from Brooklyn to Miami and finding all your old neighbours live in the same condo building as you.
  • Rosh Hashana-na-na (n.) A rock 'n roll band from Jewish Brooklyn (you have to be a certain age to get this one!)
  • Yidentify (v.) To be able to determine Jewish origins of celebrities, even though their names might be St. John, Curtis, Davis or Taylor.
  • Minyastics (n.) Going to incredible lengths and troubles to find a tenth person to complete a Minyan.
  • Feelawful (n.) Indigestion from eating Israeli street food, especially falafel.
  • Dis-kvellified (v.) To drop out of law school, med. school or business school as seen through the eyes of parents, grandparents and Uncle Sid. In extreme cases, simply choosing to major in art history when Irv's son David is majoring in biology is sufficient grounds for diskvellification.
  • Impasta (n.) A Jew who starts eating leavened foods before the end of Passover.
  • Kinders Shlep (v.) To transport other kids besides yours in your car.
  • Shofarsogut (n.) The relief you feel when, after many attempts, the shofar is finally blown at the end of Yom Kippur.
  • Trayffic Accident (n.) An appetizer one finds out has pork
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Keep out of the hospital!

It is claimed that these are sentences actually typed by medical secretaries in NHS Greater Glasgow. I have no proof for this, but thought they were funny enough to post anyway :-)

  1. The patient has no previous history of suicides.
  2. Patient has left her white blood cells at another hospital.
  3. Patient's medical history has been remarkably insignificant with only a 40 pound weight gain in the past three days. 
  4. She has no rigors or shaking chills, but her husband states she was very hot in bed last night.
  5. Patient has chest pain if she lies on her left side for over a year..
  6. On the second day the knee was better and on the third day it disappeared.
  7. The patient is tearful and crying constantly. She also appears to be depressed.
  8. The patient has been depressed since she began seeing me in 1993.
  9. Discharge status:- Alive, but without my permission.
  10. Healthy appearing decrepit 69-year old male, mentally alert, but forgetful.
  11. Patient had waffles for breakfast and anorexia for lunch.
  12. She is numb from her toes down.
  13. While in ER, she was examined, x-rated and sent home.
  14. The skin was moist and dry.
  15. Occasional, constant infrequent headaches.
  16. Patient was alert and unresponsive.
  17. Rectal examination revealed a normal size thyroid.
  18. She stated that she had been constipated for most of her life until she got a divorce.
  19. I saw your patient today, who is still under our care for physical therapy.
  20. Examination of genitalia reveals that he is circus sized..
  21. The lab test indicated abnormal lover function.
  22. Skin: somewhat pale, but present.
  23. The pelvic exam will be done later on the floor.
  24. Large brown stool ambulating in the hall.
  25. Patient has two teenage children, but no other abnormalities
  26. When she fainted, her eyes rolled around the room.
  27. The patient was in his usual state of good health until his airplane ran out of fuel and crashed.
  28. Between you and me, we ought to be able to get this lady pregnant.
  29. She slipped on the ice and apparently her legs went in separate directions in early December.
  30. Patient was seen in consultation by Dr. Smith, who felt we should sit on the abdomen and I agree.
  31. The patient was to have a bowel resection. However, he took a job as a stock broker instead.
  32. By the time he was admitted, his rapid heart had stopped, and he was feeling better.
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The Washington Post's neologism contest

Apparently, the Washington Post has an annual neologism contest, in which people are invited to modify existing words, and supply humorous meanings for them. I say “apparently” because if you search the web for it, you will find loads of pages describing it and giving some of the winners, but the WP’s own site is nowhere to be seen!

Anyway, here are some edited highlights of recent winners...

  1. Coffee (n.) the person upon whom one coughs.
  2. Flabbergasted (adj.) appalled over how much weight you have 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. Negligent (adj.) describes a condition in which you absent-mindedly answer the door in your nightgown.
  6. Lymph (v.) to walk with a lisp.
  7. Gargoyle (n.) olive-flavored mouthwash.
  8. Flatulence (n.) emergency vehicle that picks you up after you are run over by a steamroller.
  9. Balderdash (n.) a rapidly receding hairline.
  10. Testicle (n.) a humorous question on an exam.
  11. Oyster (n.) a person who sprinkles his conversation with Yiddishisms.
  12. Frisbeetarianism (n.) (back by popular demand): The belief that, when you die, your Soul flies up onto the roof and gets stuck there.
  13. 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.
  14. Cashtration (n.) The act of buying a house, which renders the subject financially impotent for an indefinite period.
  15. Giraffiti (n) Vandalism spray-painted very, very high.
  16. Sarchasm (n) The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person who doesn't get it.
  17. Inoculatte (v) To take coffee intravenously when you are running late.
  18. Hipatitis (n) Terminal coolness.
  19. Osteopornosis (n) A degenerate disease. (This one got extra credit.)
  20. Karmageddon (n) 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.
  21. Decafalon (n.) The grueling event of getting through the day consuming only things that are good for you.
  22. Dopeler effect (n) The tendency of stupid ideas to seem smarter when they come at you rapidly.
  23. Arachnoleptic fit (n.) The frantic dance performed just after you've accidentally walked through a spider web.
  24. Beelzebug (n.) Satan in the form of a mosquito that gets into your bedroom at three in the morning and cannot be cast out.
  25. Caterpallor (n.) The color you turn after finding half a grub in the fruit you're eating.
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Chaya Devoira’s check-up

We went to London on Sunday for Chaya Devoira’s latest check-up. This was a routine one, just to keep an eye on her after the operation.

B”H, they were very pleased with her. The slight leak on one of her valves is still there (makes her sound like an old car!), but they are not worried about it at all. They took her off one of the two medications that she was still on. They left the other as it helps give her heart a little more oomph, which will help her cope with the leak.

We are going back in early Feb, and hope that they will take her off this other medication as well.

Other than that, she’s doing great. B”H, she’s developing a lot better than we had expected, and whilst it’s too early to say for sure, it does look hopeful for the future.

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Hot, dry summer

sunshineAccording to the weathermen, who cannot be wrong, we are going to have a long, dry and hot summer this year.

According to the little gadget that Microsoft included in Windows Vista, which cannot be wrong, the weather outside my door is 66 degs and sunny.

According to my eyes, which obviously are wrong, it’s bunging down to a degree that would make residents of a tropical rain forest worried! I can’t remember seeing such heavy rain for a long time. Our garden is a swamp :-)

Yup, long, dry and hot, just like they predicted!

P.S. An hour later... Well, it’s now dried up, and the sky is bright, and fairly clear. My fab Windows Vista weather gadget tells me it’s bunging down! Ho hum.

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# Wednesday, 08 July 2009

Elmer J. Fudd runs Google?

I was just doing some research for a new job, and I noticed that on the main Google page there is a discrete link named “language tools.” As I was researching international versions of web sites in multiple languages, I clicked this to see what it was about.

I was not very surprised to see that the main feature of this page was to allow you to choose the language used when you use Google. I was a little surprised at the wide selection of languages, but assumed that this was due to the international nature of the web.

Looking a little closer, I noticed that one of the language choices was Elmer Fudd. For those of you who don’t remember him, Elmer J Fudd (to give him his full title) was the little bald-headed hunter who used to chase Bugs Bunny around, calling “Be vewy vewy quiet, I'm hunting wabbits.” Well, if you click the link, all the text you see in Google is written as though EJF had spoken it! So you can set your Pwefewences, or look at their Diwectowy!

If that doesn’t appeal to you, you can choose the bork bork bork language. Again, for those who don’t remember, this was the battle cry of the Swedish Chef from the Muppet Show.

Other language choices include Klingon (the evil enemies from Star Trek), Pirate (avast there ye landlubbers) and Yiddish. I know that last one isn’t a joke, but it amused me.

Brightens up an otherwise overcast day :-)

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