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Thread: Really trivial stuff that amuses you...

  1. #9301
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Solfe, isn’t it time for the “I forgot that I signed up for a class, attended no sessions, but have to take the final exam” nightmare?


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    Since I retired, I've largely replaced that one with similar ones about work.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  2. #9302
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Since I retired, I've largely replaced that one with similar ones about work.
    Same with me - strangely enough they seem more common the longer I have been retired.

  3. #9303
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    Simon and I have started spending the time we wait for his bus learning about things--we'll take something we see at his bus stop, and I'll teach him what I know about it. This morning, we were talking about speed limits. I told him that the speed limit on our block is 25 miles an hour, because we live in a residential area and there are expected to be a lot of people around. I told him there was one place that had a lower speed limit, somewhere with a lot of people who might not be as careful as they should be with cars. Could he guess where that was? He thought a minute and said, "California?"
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  4. #9304
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    Mrs Extravoice found a T-shirt as a Christmas gift for our daughter, the speech pathologist.

    The shirt says "Keep talking, I'm diagnosing you."

    (And you just know she is.)
    I may have many faults, but being wrong ain't one of them. - Jimmy Hoffa

  5. #9305
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    The Seahawks are on Monday Night Football, wearing their green PJ's. Worst uniforms in history, I'm going to root for the Vikings.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  6. #9306
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    On my morning bike ride today I went down a bike path a suburb over. Alongside a big park the local council was repairing damage caused by gum tree roots lifting up the bitumen. It was like being on a major road during roadworks. There were three council utes parked on the path with flashing hazard lights, about 4 workers digging up and resealing the path. Plus two people holding signs to stop "traffic" at either end of the work-site, communicating with each other by 2-way radio. I felt quite important as they waved me through and we all wished each other G'day.

    Then about another km down the path there was a police 4-wheel drive parked on the bike path. Two policemen plus the possible owner were examining what looked to be a stolen, damaged & dumped off-road motorbike on the side of the path. To finish off I went another 500 metres and two women were out with a young child, her small bike and a dog. Naturally enough they had all became tangled up and blocked the path. Luckily I ride so slowly that there were no problems for me.It was all a bit of fun during my ride.

  7. #9307
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    Quote Originally Posted by Extravoice View Post
    Mrs Extravoice found a T-shirt as a Christmas gift for our daughter, the speech pathologist.

    The shirt says "Keep talking, I'm diagnosing you."

    (And you just know she is.)
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  8. #9308
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    Check out this trash can. It sort of resembles R2D2.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    What blows my mind is that I have been walking by on that trail almost daily for several months now and I never noticed it. From the weathering it appears to have been there for a long time.

  9. #9309
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hornblower View Post
    Check out this trash can. It sort of resembles R2D2.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	R2D2 trash can reduced.jpg 
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ID:	23847
    What blows my mind is that I have been walking by on that trail almost daily for several months now and I never noticed it. From the weathering it appears to have been there for a long time.
    Well, once that restraining bolt was removed, R2 kind of went wild, fell in with a really bad crowd, and ended up doing odd jobs for whatever loose change he could get. Rather sad really.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

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  10. #9310
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    "Beep Beep Beezzzzz -- You kids know who I used to be? Errrrrrnt!"

  11. #9311
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    I've been reading John Sopel's book, If Only They Didn't Speak English. Sopel is the BBC's America Editor, and the book is about the many points of mutual incomprehension between the UK and USA. Much of it is too political to discuss here, but he does have some marvellous anecdotes.
    One of them is about the British Prime Minister, John Major. In the UK, Close Protection Officers traditionally try to move their principals around "under the radar". So Major was travelling north in the traditional unmarked Jaguar / Range Rover combo, through blizzard conditions on the A1. He suddenly announced that they should all stop for breakfast in a Little Chef motorway cafe.
    The weather is so foul that Major, his driver, and the two CPOs are the only customers in the restaurant - until a lorry driver comes through the door, looks around at all the deserted tables, and says to the server, "Well, today would be a great day to hold up a Little Chef!"
    As the CPOs reach for their sidearms, Major pipes up brightly, "Actually, not as good as you might think!"

    (Sopel's point, of course, is that it's difficult to imagine an American president ever being in a similar situation.)

    Grant Hutchison
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    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

  12. #9312
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I've been reading John Sopel's book, If Only They Didn't Speak English. Sopel is the BBC's America Editor, and the book is about the many points of mutual incomprehension between the UK and USA. Much of it is too political to discuss here, but he does have some marvellous anecdotes.
    One of them is about the British Prime Minister, John Major. In the UK, Close Protection Officers traditionally try to move their principals around "under the radar". So Major was travelling north in the traditional unmarked Jaguar / Range Rover combo, through blizzard conditions on the A1. He suddenly announced that they should all stop for breakfast in a Little Chef motorway cafe.
    The weather is so foul that Major, his driver, and the two CPOs are the only customers in the restaurant - until a lorry driver comes through the door, looks around at all the deserted tables, and says to the server, "Well, today would be a great day to hold up a Little Chef!"
    As the CPOs reach for their sidearms, Major pipes up brightly, "Actually, not as good as you might think!"

    (Sopel's point, of course, is that it's difficult to imagine an American president ever being in a similar situation.)

    Grant Hutchison
    Everything I’ve read on the Alternate History Dot Com forum makes it sound like Major was dull, but that is awesome.
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  13. #9313
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I've been reading John Sopel's book, If Only They Didn't Speak English. Sopel is the BBC's America Editor, and the book is about the many points of mutual incomprehension between the UK and USA. Much of it is too political to discuss here, but he does have some marvellous anecdotes.
    One of them is about the British Prime Minister, John Major. In the UK, Close Protection Officers traditionally try to move their principals around "under the radar". So Major was travelling north in the traditional unmarked Jaguar / Range Rover combo, through blizzard conditions on the A1. He suddenly announced that they should all stop for breakfast in a Little Chef motorway cafe.
    The weather is so foul that Major, his driver, and the two CPOs are the only customers in the restaurant - until a lorry driver comes through the door, looks around at all the deserted tables, and says to the server, "Well, today would be a great day to hold up a Little Chef!"
    As the CPOs reach for their sidearms, Major pipes up brightly, "Actually, not as good as you might think!"

    (Sopel's point, of course, is that it's difficult to imagine an American president ever being in a similar situation.)

    Grant Hutchison
    Sounds a bit like this doughnut shop:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gaUqdIFUbxE

  14. #9314
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    Everything I’ve read on the Alternate History Dot Com forum makes it sound like Major was dull, but that is awesome.
    Major wasn't dull - he was just portrayed by the media as a "grey man" early in his career, and the label stuck.
    In fact, he was clever but contained man who didn't go in for big dramatic gestures, and there are a lot of good stories about him in a similar vein.

    Grant Hutchison
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    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

  15. #9315
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    Major wasn't dull - he was just portrayed by the media as a "grey man" early in his career, and the label stuck.
    In fact, he was clever but contained man who didn't go in for big dramatic gestures, and there are a lot of good stories about him in a similar vein.

    Grant Hutchison
    If we are discussing him as "in the past" he was caught having a steamy affair. not a dull moment, but more positively I recall he has holding a cabinet meeting when a bomb was lobbed into the garden next to the room. It is reported he looked up and said, calmly "shall we move into another room?' They did and resumed their meeting. That's cool.
    sicut vis videre esto
    When we realize that patterns don't exist in the universe, they are a template that we hold to the universe to make sense of it, it all makes a lot more sense.
    Originally Posted by Ken G

  16. #9316
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    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    If we are discussing him as "in the past" ...
    I chose the past tense deliberately, just to keep things away from current political events, about which Major has been expressing views recently.

    Quote Originally Posted by profloater View Post
    I recall he has holding a cabinet meeting when a bomb was lobbed into the garden next to the room. It is reported he looked up and said, calmly "shall we move into another room?' They did and resumed their meeting. That's cool.
    That was the mortar attack on 10 Downing Street, February 1991.
    The anecdote Sopel recounts happened the next day. The weather was so bad, travel plans would normally have been cancelled, but Major felt it was important to carry on as scheduled rather than give any impression that he was curtailing public activity because of a terrorist threat.

    Major's problem was that he wasn't prepared to do the public acting out of emotion or indignation that for some reason is expected from politicians - hence the "grey man" label.

    Grant Hutchison
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    Note:
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  17. #9317
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    In other news, they've put in a 20mph zone in a residential street near here.
    Today, as I turned into the road, I could see a policeman in a hi-vis jacket standing against a lamp-post halfway down the street, directing some sort of camera towards oncoming traffic. I was a little disconcerted when the camera continued to be directed towards me as I travelled down the road and began to draw level with him. First of all, I was obeying the speed limit; secondly, didn't he know that a diagonal Doppler radar speed would underestimate true speed? Or was I being filmed for some other reason?
    Then, on the way back, I discovered that the policeman was actually a cut-out figure chained to the lamp-post. (Isn't it amazing how their cameras seem to follow you round the room?)

    Grant Hutchison
    Blog

    Note:
    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

  18. #9318
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    Hey, they've discovered they work to get people to follow traffic laws!
    _____________________________________________
    Gillian

    "Now everyone was giving her that kind of look UFOlogists get when they suddenly say, 'Hey, if you shade your eyes you can see it is just a flock of geese after all.'"

    "You can't erase icing."

    "I can't believe it doesn't work! I found it on the internet, man!"

  19. #9319
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    In other news, they've put in a 20mph zone in a residential street near here.
    Today, as I turned into the road, I could see a policeman in a hi-vis jacket standing against a lamp-post halfway down the street, directing some sort of camera towards oncoming traffic. I was a little disconcerted when the camera continued to be directed towards me as I travelled down the road and began to draw level with him. First of all, I was obeying the speed limit; secondly, didn't he know that a diagonal Doppler radar speed would underestimate true speed? Or was I being filmed for some other reason?
    Then, on the way back, I discovered that the policeman was actually a cut-out figure chained to the lamp-post. (Isn't it amazing how their cameras seem to follow you round the room?)

    Grant Hutchison
    A few years ago my town had an old police car they'd move around with a really crude dummy sitting in it. Might have been effective for a week or two then it got written up in the paper. Eventually someone set it on fire.

    Stuff I don't get: The UK is supposed to be a metric country but still uses mph. Why not 30km/h? It's all metric in Canada.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  20. #9320
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    A few years ago my town had an old police car they'd move around with a really crude dummy sitting in it. Might have been effective for a week or two then it got written up in the paper. Eventually someone set it on fire.
    I give this particular cut-out until sunset, then it'll be gone.

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Stuff I don't get: The UK is supposed to be a metric country but still uses mph. Why not 30km/h? It's all metric in Canada.
    Why not indeed. My hypothesis is that no government has been prepared to deal with the task of replacing millions of road signs overnight, or the disruption associated with replacing them over a longer period, so we're stuck with road measures in miles.

    Grant Hutchison
    Last edited by grant hutchison; 2018-Dec-15 at 06:29 PM.
    Blog

    Note:
    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

  21. #9321
    In Nova Scotia some signs have kms and miles. I friend of mine has a youtube channel and he uses the imperial system, it drives me nuts.
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  22. #9322
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I give this particular cut-out until sunset, then it'll be gone.

    Why not indeed. My hypothesis is that no government has been prepared to deal with the task of replacing millions of road signs overnight, or the disruption associated with replacing them over a longer period, so we're stuck with road measures in miles.

    Grant Hutchison
    Canada, however, has managed it. I've given up on the USA.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  23. #9323
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Canada, however, has managed it. I've given up on the USA.
    And Sweden managed to switch which side they drove on, back in the 60s. It requires a political will and a compliant population. I suspect we have neither of those in the UK.

    Grant Hutchison
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  24. #9324
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    I support the use of the metric system in the United States, even if the only means I have of advocating for it at the moment is by writing the heights of my Dungeons and Dragons characters in meters and centimeters on their character sheets.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
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  25. #9325
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    I remember that brief hopeful moment in the 1970s when the US tried teaching metric in schools. The problem was, they did it in the most backwards way possible. Instead of showing us metric visual aids and weights, as they had with the old measures, they started with Imperial units, then gave us tables of conversion to metric decimals. You would have to do long division just to figure out how tall you were! And of course this was before pocket calculators were a thing. So, scratch paper all around, and no real feel for what metric units were. We knew yards, we could visualize how long a yard is. A meter was just an imperfect yard to us.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  26. #9326
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    The UK's national mapping agency, the Ordnance Survey, switched to metric back in the 70s. With the result I walk in kilometres but drive in miles. I'm pretty much bilingual in the two sets of units.

    Grant Hutchison
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    Note:
    During life, we all develop attitudes and strategies to make our interactions with others more pleasant and useful. If I mention mine here, those comments can apply only to myself, my experiences and my situation. Such remarks cannot and should not be construed as dismissing, denigrating, devaluing or criticizing any different attitudes and strategies that other people have evolved as a result of their different situation and different experiences.

  27. #9327
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    And Sweden managed to switch which side they drove on, back in the 60s. It requires a political will and a compliant population. I suspect we have neither of those in the UK.

    Grant Hutchison
    Sweden, IIRC, did at least have left-hand-drive cars.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  28. #9328
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    In Australia they did it with a very comprehensive programme of education and rules. We went metric over a period of about 8 years. Decimal currency in 1966 to road speeds etc in in 1974. Apparently all road signs were changed over within the space of one month, with very little traffic problems. I had been driving for a couple of years at that time and I certainly don't remember any hassles. When the changeover was done it was done fairly ruthlessly. For example the importation of rulers, measures etc in imperial units was banned, except for special cases, until fairly recently. Basically it was "we are changing and that is that". Apart from the usual few "eccentrics" there was widespread support, especially as the change to Decimal Currency from Pounds & Shillings had gone so well and shown the advantages of the metric system.

    My kids are fully metricised but people like me still slip into imperial units occasionally for peoples height etc.

  29. #9329
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    I support the use of the metric system in the United States, even if the only means I have of advocating for it at the moment is by writing the heights of my Dungeons and Dragons characters in meters and centimeters on their character sheets.
    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    I remember that brief hopeful moment in the 1970s when the US tried teaching metric in schools. The problem was, they did it in the most backwards way possible. Instead of showing us metric visual aids and weights, as they had with the old measures, they started with Imperial units, then gave us tables of conversion to metric decimals. You would have to do long division just to figure out how tall you were! And of course this was before pocket calculators were a thing. So, scratch paper all around, and no real feel for what metric units were. We knew yards, we could visualize how long a yard is. A meter was just an imperfect yard to us.
    I had a physical for a job and someone tried to convert feet and inches to centimeters for height with a calculator. They converted the 5 feet to 60 inches, but then converted the 7 inches to 17.78 centimeters and added that to 60. When I complained, they were totally baffled by how I could see a problem of being 77.78 cm tall or .7778 meters tall or 30.62 inches tall or two and half feet tall. The LPN processing the paperwork for my employer threw up her hands because this always happens with the one office.

    There is a bit of middle New York that uses metric on the highway. Not sure why. We get excellent radio and TV reception from Toronto stations, so it isn't terribly hard to get used to both measurement systems. Exactly how one can blow it so completely is beyond me.

    Personally, I only bother to remember that 2.54 cm is an inch, a liter is 2.2 pounds, and zero C is 273.15 Kelvin, 104 F is 40 C and 32 F is 0 C, 60 mph is 96 kph. I figure I can go from anything in one system to anything in the other with a handful of numbers.

    MPH to KPH is useless. Canadians don't seem to be able to measure speed in any meaningful way. Just drive like the Snowbirds Aerobatic team set to a Tragically Hip/Our Lady Peace playlist while chugging a double double coffee and everything will be fine.
    Solfe

  30. #9330
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    I still like common fractions. A kilometer is pretty close to 5/8 of a mile.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

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