Summer miscellany

Typical Redditor: Reads seven Harry Potter books that are about love, friendship, family, innocence, loyalty, cooperation, the triumph of good over evil, the corrupting influence of power, and the good that will come to good-hearted people, and all he can focus on is the inconsistencies in magical spells, magical items, and magical abilities.

Today I learned: The garbanzo bean and the chickpea are the same thing!

It’s a shame we can’t leave Christmas lights up all year. They’re so pretty and fun and festive. I guess your neighbors would really get sick of them, and I personally wouldn’t want to leave them up all year because that would decrease the specialness of Christmas lights at Christmas time. But I wish that wouldn’t happen. I wish our homes and cities could look like that all the time and remain special.

Ira and Asa sound like women’s names. Every time I hear the name Ira Gershwin, I think of a female blues or jazz singer, and every time I hear the name Asa, such as Asa Phelps in an awesome episode of The Simpsons, it makes me think of a woman’s name. How many other men’s names end in A? It’s just confusing.

When I was a young child, the first car I remember my parents owning was a 1987 or 1988 Ford Taurus. One of the main things I remember about it was the digital speedometer display. I think I’ve only seen a digital speedometer in one other car since our Taurus. I remember every time the car started up, all of the pixels or bars of the digital display would temporarily light up, so that the speed said 88 for a second, and every time I saw that, I thought of the Delorean in Back to the Future going 88 mph. I’d say to my mom, “Oh, no, Mom, we’re going to go back in time!”

Are there even any toilet paper rolls that aren’t “double” rolls anymore? At what point does it become pointless to continue referring to a toilet paper roll that is now standard-size as a “double roll”? The same can be asked of laundry detergent: Almost all of them are now 2x- or 3x-concentrated detergents now, so is any company ever going to drop the “2x” or “3x” label? They’re probably hesitant to because then it would seem like theirs is less concentrated than other brands and that you’d get fewer washes out of the same-size bottle, even though the number of loads is clearly indicated on every bottle. We could be stuck with meaningless “double” and “2x” and “3x” on these products forever, or at least as long as they are made.

I’m making Kathy watch Star Trek: The Next Generation with me on Netflix, and we’re already on the sixth season. I remember wishing, when I watched TNG as a child and then a college student, that Geordi would say the line, “But you don’t have to take my word for it,” or at least, “You don’t have to take my word for it,” as the actor LeVar Burton did on Reading Rainbow. I guess serious dramas can’t cheapen themselves with allusionary humor like that, but I think it would have been worth it. Castle has made all kinds of Firefly references, and it’s no worse for it.

If there were a hell and each person’s hell were individualized to their darkest fear or worst way to spend eternity, my personal hell would be forever being on the verge of a sneeze but never being able to sneeze.

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2 Responses to Summer miscellany

  1. John S. says:

    Look, this comment has nothing to do with the topic. Rather, it has to do with this old web page of yours (yes, it is still up):
    …and I just wanted to thank your for it. I found it d*mned hard locating a current reference to a John Petrie who had recently graduated from University of Georgia.
    If you are not that John Petrie, please enjoy the link anyways.
    If you are, where in the eff is your email addy on this blagdatious page/site, whutever?
    Thanks truly,

    C. John S.

  2. John says:


    My email address is my first name at this domain name. I didn’t publish it because I want to minimize spam email from robots. :)