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Thread: Really trivial stuff that amuses you...

  1. #11281
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    When my wife, Kitty decides to play a long with sci-fi TV shows, she doesn't play around.


    Kitty: Is that a tardigrade?
    Me: No, I think it's a space spider. Why?
    Kitty: I had a tardigrade named James, once.
    Me: Oh, yeah?
    Kitty: He's over there... someplace.
    As it happens, I do have a tardigrade, because they sold plush toy ones at the American Museum of Natural History at an exhibit about extremophiles a few years ago. I named her Ursa Minor.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  2. #11282
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    Continuing with the r in February... I pronounce it. Many where I live don't.

    For the first time in nine years I put up a string of outdoor Christmas lights. It was a smaller effort than I used to make, just along the posts and the beam of my home's small veranda.

    Two things about this amuse me. I've only ever done this sort of decorating when my children were living here (at least part time). I've recently had an adult child boomerang home, so that must be the explanation. The other is that the world of Christmas lighting has passed by me. Everyone has strings of LEDs, but mine are the old incandescents. Oh well, they're only on a few hours in the evening, and they look... friendlier.
    We put a string of lights on our little fence in front and one on the upper deck. Yesterday two neighbors lit up trees in their front yards. Maybe we inspired them!
    When we bought our place here, initially as a vacation home, we started decorating for Christmas. Nobody in the neighborhood was doing it, but gradually a few more have joined in.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  3. #11283
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    Quote Originally Posted by KaiYeves View Post
    As it happens, I do have a tardigrade, because they sold plush toy ones at the American Museum of Natural History at an exhibit about extremophiles a few years ago. I named her Ursa Minor.
    If you feed her plush spoors she can take you anywhere in the plush universe.
    At night the stars put on a show for free (Carole King)

    All moderation in purple - The rules

  4. #11284
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swift View Post
    If you feed her plush spoors she can take you anywhere in the plush universe.
    She’s also roughly the same size as the plush snow leopard cub she sits next to on my pillow, because plush toy biology is a strange thing.
    The greatest journey of all time, for all to see
    Every mission makes our dreams reality
    And our destiny begins with you and me
    Through all space and time, the achievement of mankind
    As we sail the sea of discovery, on heroes’ wings we fly!

  5. #11285
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    We put a string of lights on our little fence in front and one on the upper deck. Yesterday two neighbors lit up trees in their front yards. Maybe we inspired them!
    When we bought our place here, initially as a vacation home, we started decorating for Christmas. Nobody in the neighborhood was doing it, but gradually a few more have joined in.
    Years ago, when I lived in the US, a neighbour had lights way up high in a tall tree.

    I asked how they did that. They said they put the lights up years ago, and the tree grew.
    A: "Things that are equal to the same are equal to each other"
    B: "The two sides of this triangle are things that are equal to the same"
    C: "If A and B are true, Z must be true"
    D: "If A and B and C are true, Z must be true"
    E: "If A and B and C and D are true, Z must be true"

    Therefore, Z: "The two sides of this triangle are equal to each other"

  6. #11286
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Backroad Astronomer View Post
    During a power outage who can tell who has a power generator.
    On our unlit street, we kind of stand out as having a generator when the power goes out.
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    Man is a tool-using animal. Nowhere do you find him without tools; without tools he is nothing, with tools he is all. — Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881)

  7. #11287
    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    On our unlit street, we kind of stand out as having a generator when the power goes out.
    Last night the power went out and a neighbors lights were still on.
    From the wilderness into the cosmos.
    You can not be afraid of the wind, Enterprise: Broken Bow.
    https://davidsuniverse.wordpress.com/

  8. #11288
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    Quote Originally Posted by PetersCreek View Post
    On our unlit street, we kind of stand out as having a generator when the power goes out.
    Same here. An absolutely mandatory requirement for our new house was a an automatic generator powered by a tank of propane. It caused me some friction with the builders. First power outage, it didn't work. Turned out there was a breaker on the wall above it, required by the fire department so they can disconnect it in emergency, which was off. It also powered only the fridge and a couple of lighting circuits. I had almost everything else in the house added, because, hey, 10KW! I just wish it could provide heat. But we get light, cable, and internet!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  9. #11289
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    Quote Originally Posted by 21st Century Schizoid Man View Post
    Years ago, when I lived in the US, a neighbour had lights way up high in a tall tree.

    I asked how they did that. They said they put the lights up years ago, and the tree grew.
    I was always told it doesn't work that way, at least for evergreens - the existing branches don't move up as the tree gets taller, new branches grow at the top (and the existing branches simply grow outwards).

    Was I misinformed?
    Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn

  10. #11290
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    Quote Originally Posted by SeanF View Post
    I was always told it doesn't work that way, at least for evergreens - the existing branches don't move up as the tree gets taller, new branches grow at the top (and the existing branches simply grow outwards).

    Was I misinformed?
    No, I don't thing so. The neighbor may have been making a joke.

    ETA: Need some help from Torsten here!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  11. #11291
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    The famous "bike embedded in the tree" seems to suggest that some small amount of growth happens from the base of the tree, since the bike is now five feet off the ground. Dubious story, though, given that there are alternate versions of how it got there. I lean towards the idea that someone once hung it from a shoulder-height branch, rather than a child left it propped against the tree.

    Grant Hutchison

  12. #11292
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    Yesterday, I was watching a series on Disney+ about the history of Marvel in all sorts of unusual ways. (The first episode is about the Japanese Spider-Man.) Turns out there was a guy working for Marvel in the '80s named Archie Goodwin. I guess working for Nero Wolfe wasn't doing it for him anymore?
    _____________________________________________
    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!"

  13. #11293
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    Agreed, trees grow radially and from the tips of branches, only grasses grow from the ground. I have see wire fences nailed to trees and they can get covered over time but not vertically shifted.
    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

  14. #11294
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    No, I don't thing so. The neighbor may have been making a joke.

    ETA: Need some help from Torsten here!
    You called?

    I'm most familiar with trees from the temperate zones, but I think the general physiology is the same for all trees. They grow in height by extending a leader each year from a bud at the tip of the previous year's growth. Lateral branches can emerge in a number of ways: mostly from buds that were established on the previous year's leader, or from buds that arise on the current year's growth in an indeterminate manner, or from primordia that were established on the stem long ago and only grow in response to a change in the environment. For example, some trees will grow new branches far below the top of the tree in response to pruning and/or an increase in light striking the stem. But the interval between established branches does not lengthen as the tree ages.

    The first question on the Christmas exam for my dendrology class was based on a "BC by John Hart" cartoon. One of the characters is standing next to a sapling that is shorter than he is. A noose around his neck is tied to a limb at about the level of his waist. The name of a disruptive classmate was written in tiny letters - barely noticeable - on the foot of the character. The question was "What environmental factors will hasten or delay this richly deserved death". My answer began with "xxxx is more likely to die of exposure than by hanging" and continued with the explanation of why death by hanging wasn't going to happen. I recall some of my classmates being baffled by the question.

  15. #11295
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    There is one way that the established branches on a tree may rise over time relative to the general ground level, and that is by the accumulation of root volume below the tree that lifts the entire tree up. By coincidence, on one of my walks yesterday I was thinking of how a detailed elevation survey around the base of a tree might help quantify the mass of roots under it. Sometimes my mind goes to unusual places.

  16. #11296
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torsten View Post
    There is one way that the established branches on a tree may rise over time relative to the general ground level, and that is by the accumulation of root volume below the tree that lifts the entire tree up. By coincidence, on one of my walks yesterday I was thinking of how a detailed elevation survey around the base of a tree might help quantify the mass of roots under it. Sometimes my mind goes to unusual places.
    I wondered if that might be the reason for the mysteriously rising bicycle (or perhaps erosion dropping the ground level to expose the roots). But a photograph in my second link includes a view of the tree base, which looks pretty normal.

    Grant Hutchison

  17. #11297
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    Quote Originally Posted by grant hutchison View Post
    I wondered if that might be the reason for the mysteriously rising bicycle (or perhaps erosion dropping the ground level to expose the roots). But a photograph in my second link includes a view of the tree base, which looks pretty normal.

    Grant Hutchison
    I'd say that bicycle was placed in a fork in the tree's stem. One side of the fork became the main bole of the tree, the other side did not do so well, but is still present as the much smaller diameter stem, and which is probably dead by now. In the picture that shows the two men, the one fellow's foot rests on a root, so that would be about the level described as the point of germination. The tree appears to be growing on a mound, and in really wet areas as this place is described, seedlings that establish on natural mounds are more likely to survive and grow well, and even make the mound larger over time. But I doubt there was five feet of lift.

  18. #11298
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    Thinking of the boy who did not want a girl’s bike, hooking it as high as possible seems plausible and helps explain why it was not seen earlier. Or someone went to a lot of trouble to cut the bike into the tree��
    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

  19. #11299
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    I saw the BBC’s article on the Starship test. The title is “Elon Musk's Starship prototype makes a big impact”



    They are clear in the article that it has made an impact in more ways than one. I have to agree with the last bit:

    “The SpaceX CEO is famous for his aggressive and overly optimistic schedules. He does, however, have a habit of proving critics wrong by eventually attaining his goals.”

    https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-55239628

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

    The Leif Ericson Cruiser

  20. #11300
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    Like other men my age, I needed to take a little blue pill yesterday evening. Aleve, for my aching back!
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  21. #11301
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    Half an hour or so ago, I realized I hadn't visited the McMansion Hell website in a while. So I did.
    This house caught my attention. The upper floor in front looks like a pretty normal one story house. Just ignore the bottom.
    And then there's the mid-century modern furniture. A lot of it looks very like my parents' dining room set, hutch, coffee table, and end table; which they got in the appropriate era. And according to Antiques Roadshow which I watched on Monday, it is very popular and pricey right now. I think one of my brother's daughters has it now. At least I hope she still does.
    Also in demand right now: Blue cornflower pattern Corningware. Of which we gave a complete set to another of my nieces several years ago!

    Oh, since I'm typing: You may have noticed I complain frequently about homophones. What do you call words that are spelled the same but are pronounced and mean completely different things? Example: Does. Either "duz"; some tense or other of "do", which is pronounced "dew"; or multiple female deer.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  22. #11302
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    What do you call words that are spelled the same but are pronounced and mean completely different things? Example: Does. Either "duz"; some tense or other of "do", which is pronounced "dew"; or multiple female deer.
    Homographs.

    Grant Hutchison

  23. #11303
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
    Example: Does. Either "duz"; some tense or other of "do"...
    Third person singular form of the present tense.
    As above, so below

  24. #11304
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jens View Post
    Third person singular form of the present tense.
    My English teachers despaired of me sometimes!
    Meanwhile, my wife is watching a football game. Soccer, if you prefer. She's in another room but I can hear her from here complaining about the Oscar-worthy performances of the other team feigning injury.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  25. #11305
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    I just spent about half an hour watching Big Clive do an autopsy on a failed British "Consumer Unit" -- aka Circuit Breaker Box -- that caught fire and am now halfway through one from the electrician who got to replace it. Fortunately, the homeowner was able to extinguish the fire. But it's pretty toasty!
    As an engineer -- mechanical, not electrical -- it was interesting to see how different the products appear for doing the same job versus the USA.

    We, by the way, have two breaker panels in our garage, one regular and one for the generator. We love our generator, which keeps us in internet and TV when the power is out.
    Cum catapultae proscriptae erunt tum soli proscript catapultas habebunt.

  26. #11306
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    Everyday I log in, look at that COVID-19 (OTB) thread and start to post something. Then I think, "Nope, nope. Everyone's good. No need to add my two cents..." and cancel out. It's been happening for a week. It is a good reading thread though.
    Solfe

  27. #11307
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    On the opening screen on my iPad, I saw a suggestion, “Learn how to set a daily reading goal.”

    I really don’t think I need that . . . unless perhaps the goal is to reduce my daily reading.

    "The problem with quotes on the Internet is that it is hard to verify their authenticity." — Abraham Lincoln

    I say there is an invisible elf in my backyard. How do you prove that I am wrong?

    The Leif Ericson Cruiser

  28. #11308
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    Quote Originally Posted by Solfe View Post
    Everyday I log in, look at that COVID-19 (OTB) thread and start to post something. Then I think, "Nope, nope. Everyone's good. No need to add my two cents..." and cancel out. It's been happening for a week. It is a good reading thread though.
    Glad there's nothing to report. Good week.
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  29. #11309
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    Quote Originally Posted by Van Rijn View Post
    . . . unless perhaps the goal is to reduce my daily reading.
    The words are clearly English, but I cannot comprehend what this means!
    "I'm planning to live forever. So far, that's working perfectly." Steven Wright

  30. #11310
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noclevername View Post
    Glad there's nothing to report. Good week.
    The word "Flock" just came up in that thread. I like that word because somehow I flipped it with "frock" in the kit modeling thread.
    Solfe

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