Category: Link Lists

Mildly Amusing Missive #1

When Grammar and Punctuation Walk into a Bar
I’ve posted a new series of quotations on my blog, The Quippery. They are  jokes about Walking into a Bar, but the subjects who do the walking are unusual.

The Trials of Being Senior

The other day, my mom asked Siri to find information on senior self-defense.
Siri: “Looking for information on seniors in Depends.”
After a couple of such unsuccessful attempts, my mom gave up.
– Dawnette Moore Thompson, comment on Mike Rowe’s Facebook Page –

A Belated In Memoriam

Women loved (Alan) Rickman: He wasn’t movie-star handsome – not Kevin Costner male-lead handsome – but he oozed both a predatory sensuality and a kind of indifferent hauteur and the combination was irresistible. His mesmeric baritone could sound knee-tremblingly sexy when he was asking if you’d like fries with that.
– Mark Steyn –

To Be, or Not to Be

The way to do is to be. — Leo-tzu, Chinese philosopher
The way to be is to do. — Dale Carnegie
Do be, do be, do. — Frank Sinatra
– A Three part missive written in about 1968 on the wall at Bud’s Tool Cribs by Bud Crew, a Salesman and an Anonymous person-

Does this describe President Trump?

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.
-Steve Jobs –

Speaking of Donald Trump
It would be hard to pick the best lines he delivered at the Annual dinner of the Gridiron Club and Foundation. He started with

I was very excited to receive this invitation and ruin your evening in person. That’s why I accepted.

and closed with

I just want to say this, this is one of the best times I’ve had with the media — this might be the most fun I’ve had since watching your faces on election night.

Last Trump Reference, Honest!
I heard the Secret Service had to change their commands. They can’t say “Get down!” anymore when the President is under attack. Now it’s “Donald! Duck!”

Prime Minister Trudeau – Can Gender Neutrality be Fun?

Canada’s Prime Minister has admitted he doesn’t have the best track records with jokes. At a recent Townhall Meeting, he responded to a woman who said “… change the future of mankind” by suggesting she say “… ‘peoplekind,’ not necessarily ‘mankind’,” adding that the former is more inclusive. He later said he was just ‘lightly ribbing the woman.’

The Trudeau Government is a leader in women’s rights, equality and power dynamics of gender. In keeping with that, Canada recently passed a bill that would make the country’s national anthem gender-neutral by changing the phrase “in all they sons command” to “in all of us command.”

Personally, I wonder how our vocabulary would change if we were required, either by practice or law, to speak ‘gender neutrality’. Is the word ‘person’ gender neutral? (It contains the word ‘son’.) Is the word ‘woman’ gender neutral? (It contains the word ‘man’.) Is the word ‘human’ gender neutral? And finally, do we have to change ‘Manitoba’ (a Canadian province) to Peopletoba’?

12 Things I Learned from Life and Writing by Anne Lamott

So I sat down a few days before my 61st birthday, and I decided to compile a list of everything I know for sure. There’s so little truth in the popular culture, and it’s good to be sure of a few things…
Number 2: almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes, including you.
– Anne Lamott –

What was Mildly Amusing to you this week?

Well of Lost Thoughts – 2017

The QuipperyWhen I find ideas that speak to me, but I’m not ready to blog about them,  I save them on my Fueled by Chocolate ‘Well of Lost Thoughts’ Facebook Page. Here are just a few of the ones I have ‘rescued’ from there to share with you.

How Cold was our Christmas this Year?
“On Boxing Day, extreme cold warnings were issued for a section of Canada stretching from the Alberta/B.C. border all the way to the St. Lawrence River. That’s a swath of Canada roughly 3,500 km wide.” from the National Post: Mars and the North Pole are warmer than Winnipeg

It was -30C (-22F) here at the Red House on Boxing Day (December 26). It takes a lot of fuel to heat our country in the winter – renewable resources are not going to be able to provide that much energy in the near term. In the meantime, we depend on fossil fuels. This video by Corb Lund and the Hurtin’ Albertans, (filmed near Devon, Alberta on May 30, 2004) is a favourite for some of us who depend on this industry. The Car Guy will attest to the accuracy of the terms used in this song.

On the Topic of Jobs Where you Get Dirty
Mike Rowe has dedicated his life to making ‘work’ cool again. He recognizes and tirelessly promotes, the need for education programs for trades people.

We are lending money we don’t have to kids who can’t pay it back to train them for jobs that no longer exist. That’s nuts.
– Mike Rowe –

Mike Rowe – You’ve Got to Make Work Cool Again

The Piano Guys – This is Your Fight Song
I first heard The Piano Guys at a friend’s house in Arizona this past spring. The group, who are from Utah, decided to perform at the inauguration of Donald Trump in January 2017. That caused a lot of controversy, but the ‘Guys’ explained “We don’t feel right limiting our positive message only to people that believe or act the same way we do.”

Christmas Joy
I am not a devout anything when it comes to religion. This has been quite useful as I traveled the world and visited churches of many faiths, listened to their music and read their history and stories. In keeping with this time of year  and the Christian traditions of many parts of the world, here are some videos that are fun:

Christmas According to Children

From England – Marks and Spencer Videos – lots of interesting stories, including this one from last Christmas:

Human Rights, Animal Rights and Plant Rights
A Dissertation on Plant’s Rights by Cowboy Poet Baxter Black DVM .

Last, but not least our Canadian airline, WestJet Puts the Fun Back into Travel

Deer readers, my gnu years resolution is to tell you a gazelleon times how much I caribou you! Sorry. Bad puns. Alpaca bag and leave.
– Greg Tamblyn –

Well of Lost Thoughts – 2016

When I find ideas that speak to me, but I’m not ready to blog about them,  I save them on my Fueled by Chocolate ‘Well of Lost Thoughts’ Page. Here are just a few of the ones I have ‘rescued’ from there to share with you.

For more posts is this series, click on Lost Thoughts.

Baby Boomers: You’d better believe the generation that ended a war in Vietnam and changed the flavour of Coke will have something to say about their chocolate pudding.
– Macleans – There’s a Cooking Career Gold Mine

You don’t make yourself better by tearing others down.
If you can’t intelligently argue for both sides of an issue, you don’t understand the issue well enough to argue for either.
– Margy –

Stop crying wolf. God forbid, one day we might have somebody who doesn’t give speeches about how diversity makes this country great and how he wants to fight for minorities, who doesn’t pose holding a rainbow flag and state that he proudly supports transgender people, who doesn’t outperform his party among minority voters, who wasn’t the leader of the Salute to Israel Parade, and who doesn’t offer minorities major cabinet positions. And we won’t be able to call that guy an “openly white supremacist Nazi homophobe”, because we already wasted all those terms this year.”
– Scott Alexander, You are Still Crying Wolf

Traversing Canada, this train has crossed red sand on the East Coast, passed beneath waterfalls in the Rockies and been blown off its tracks in an Ontario lightning storm. It’s also two inches tall. The model toy is the subject of Jeff Friesen’s venture to photograph the Canadian landscape up close.
Tiny Train Goes Off the Beaten Track

A magazine writer named Bing / Could make copy from most anything; / But the copy he wrote / of a ten-dollar note / Was so good he now lives in Sing Sing.
Funny Limericks

There are thousands and thousands of bees that are not honeybees out there, pollinating our flowers and helping plants produce food.
The Other Bees

Looking from the window seat on a long plane flight, you might have noticed that large swaths of the United States are divided into a latticework of farms, towns and forests. The cells of that grid, each one mile to a side, are the visible result of a land planning system first proposed by Thomas Jefferson more than two centuries ago.
The Jefferson Grid

In 1942 the U.S. built thousands of planes in war factories each month. Those planes needed to be delivered to air bases, but pilots were in short supply.
And so in the summer of 1943, a call went out for women to do the flying.
Twenty-five thousand women applied, and 1,100 were chosen as Women Airforce Service Pilots – WASPs.
– From Remembering the WASPs

Art that starts with an everyday objects – Christoph Niemann is an artist who’s bursting at the seams with creativity.
– From  20 Creative Drawings

The world is not in the midst of some imminent or unavoidable decline, and neither is our country. The species is no more flawed than we were 500 years ago, and the world no more wicked. It just feels that way, because today, we get to see more bad news than ever before. We get to see it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We get to see it live, in our newsfeed, and in our homes. We get to see it in vivid high-definition. And now, unlike any time prior, we get to see it as entertainment.
– Mike Rowe –

Shortly after my daughter was born, 9/11 happened. As I was crying to my Grandma about what kind of world my child had been born into, she said, “When your father was born, Hitler was in power.” Then she patted my hand and said, “It’ll be ok.”
– Blythe Tabor –

The Elephants and Bees Project is an innovative study using an in-depth understanding of elephant behaviour to reduce damage from crop-raiding elephants using their instinctive avoidance of African honey bees.
– From Elephant and Bees

Please note that we can only reasonably accommodate up to two pieces of emotional baggage per passenger,” she says. “Any more than that and we start to really compromise the air quality in the cabin.
– From CBC Comedy, Emotional Baggage

Some researchers question whether dogs experience feelings like love and loyalty, or whether their winning ways are just a matter of instincts that evolved because being a hanger-on is an easier way to make a living than running down elk.
– From The Big Search

Other countries, particularly America, have worked hard to settle the fighting between the Arabs and Israelis but so far nothing has worked. Many people want Gaza and the West Bank to be turned into a new country – Palestine. Israel won’t agree to this unless it feels safe – and Hamas accepts its right to exist.
– BBC, Feb 2015 –

You ever notice how you can’t find any naked pictures in a library?” Maxwell would sometimes say to strangers on the subway…
– From The Swiss Army Librarian – Where the Naked People Are

I believe listening skills are something most introverts develop out of necessity, just as a way of deflecting attention away from them. They learn at a very early age to ask questions of other people and listen to the answers. That, of course, is an incredibly powerful skill to have.
– From Quiet Revolution by Susan Cain –

Every year, millions of tourists flock to Banff National Park in Canada to see and photograph the gorgeous landscapes. Photographer Meghan Krauss was fascinated by the crowds of tourists shooting selfies and other photos in these pristine locations, so in 2013, she began to shoot panoramic photos of those spots and then composite large numbers of tourists into a single frame.
– From Meghan Krauss Photography

Dave Barry explains the colonoscopy: “I left Andy’s office with some written instructions, and a prescription for a product called ”MoviPrep,” which comes in a box large enough to hold a microwave oven. I will discuss MoviPrep in detail later; for now suffice it to say that we must never allow it to fall into the hands of America’s enemies.”
– From Dave Barry – A Journey into My Colon

The mikeroweWORKS Foundation started the Profoundly Disconnected® campaign to challenge the absurd belief that a four-year degree is the only path to success. The Skills Gap is here, and if we don’t close it, it’ll swallow us all.
– From Profoundly Disconnected

School portraits aren’t usually the result of creative photo concepts, but photographer Krijn Westerburgen was recently able to flex his creative muscles for an elementary school class photo in the Netherlands. He photographed the students in the style of a Rembrandt painting.
– From School Class Photo in the style of ‘Nightwatch’

When the Japanese mend broken objects, they aggrandize the damage by filling the cracks with gold. They believe that when something’s suffered damage and has a history it becomes more beautiful. – Barbara Bloom –
– From Examples of Kintsugi: Golden Jointery

The language of astroturfers and propagandists includes trademark inflammatory terms such as: anti, nutty, quack, crank, pseudo-science, debunking, conspiracy theory, deniers and junk science. Sometimes astroturfers claim to “debunk myths” that aren’t myths at all. They declare debates over that aren’t over. They claim that “everybody agrees” when everyone doesn’t agree. They aim to make you think you’re an outlier when you’re not.
Astroturfers and propagandists tend to attack and controversialize the news organizations, personalities and people surrounding an issue rather than sticking to the facts. They try to censor and silence topics and speakers rather than engage them.
– From Astroturf and Manipulation of Media Messages by Sharyl Attkisson –

SmartBird is an ultralight but powerful flight model with excellent aerodynamic qualities and extreme agility. With SmartBird, Festo has succeeded in deciphering the flight of birds – one of the oldest dreams of humankind.
– From Festo – SmartBird

Alarmists suggest the increasing use of land haul-outs is a sign of disaster, caused by the loss of sea ice. However all the evidence argues that as walrus populations increase, so does the use of land haul-outs. It is a sign of the walrus’ successful recovery.
– From Successful Walrus Conservation

Carrie Fisher: “They don’t want to hire all of me — only about three-quarters,” she told Good Housekeeping in the magazine’s January cover story. “Nothing changes, it’s an appearance-driven thing. I’m in a business where the only thing that matters is weight and appearance. That is so messed up. They might as well say get younger, because that’s how easy it is.
–  Carrie Fisher Slams Body-shamers –

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Well of Lost Thoughts – 2015

When I find ideas that speak to me, but I’m not ready to blog about them,  I save them on my Fueled by Chocolate ‘Well of Lost Thoughts’ Page. Here are just a few of the ones I have ‘rescued’ from there to share with you.

For more posts is this series, click on Lost Thoughts.

Years from now, when telling my future grandchildren about 2015, I will speak at length about the treachery, fibs, toxic scoops, deceits, tall tales, viral hoaxes, half-truths, tomfoolery, unverified junk and fake news.
“What a time to be alive,” I will say. “You just didn’t know what to believe in 2015.”
– From The Truth Wasn’t Out There –

According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, while both male and female reindeer grow antlers in the summer each year, Male reindeer drop their antlers at the beginning of winter, usually late November to mid-December. Female reindeer retain their antlers till after they give birth in the spring.
Therefore, according to EVERY historical rendition depicting Santa’s reindeer, EVERY single one of them, from Rudolph to Blitzen, had to be a girl.
We should’ve known… ONLY women would be able to drag a man in a red velvet suit all around the world in one night and not get lost.
– From Snopes Reindeer Games

Albertans are poking fun of actor Leonardo DiCaprio over comments he made about having seen the effects of climate change firsthand while in Alberta filming his new movie The Revenant.
DiCaprio was quoted in the recent issue of Variety as saying “we would come and there would be eight feet of snow, and then all of a sudden a warm gust of wind would come.
The actor, who is working on a climate change documentary, said locals told him “this has never happened in our province ever.”
The problem is, the warm gusts of wind DiCaprio described are a common environmental occurrence in Calgary known as a Chinook.
– From It’s a Chinook

We — meaning all of us, not just libertarians, or progressives, or conservatives — tend to approach any question with a fog of beliefs, biases, and vague impressions. We seek out evidence that supports what we already think true, and look for ways to reject evidence that doesn’t. We’re more forgiving of the mistakes in reasoning made by those on our side, and pounce voraciously on the most minor mistakes made by ideological foes. All this leads to spirited debate, but it doesn’t lead to good debate.”
– Cato Institute –

I was playing around with the photos in the computer trying to create something that you couldn’t capture with the camera, mostly very basic modifications like changing color or putting my little sisters on our roof top.
The Work of Eric Johannson

Every writer faces a moment in her career when she realizes that a good part of success has nothing to do with skill or planning, and everything to do with pure, dumb luck. For me, that moment arrived at a party at the Romance Writers of America conference in St. Louis in 1993, when a colleague came to me and asked, “Did you know the heroine on the cover of your newest release has three arms?”
– Christina Dodd – On the Other Hand

On an important decision one rarely has 100% of the information needed for a good decision no matter how much one spends or how long one waits. And, if one waits too long, he has a different problem and has to start all over.”
– Robert K. Greenleaf, Servant As Leader –

Winter in Canada – what will 25,000 Syrian refugees think about relocating to Canada?!
– Environment Canada – Cloudy with a Chance of Making Stuff up from Rick Mercer –

It has been reported that in an interview with German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, the Dalai Lama was asked about the terror attacks in Paris.
“We cannot solve this problem only through prayers. I am a Buddhist and I believe in praying. But humans have created this problem, and now we are asking God to solve it. It is illogical. God would say, solve it yourself because you created it in the first place.”

The Indians on the Aamjiwnaang First Nation reservation in Grand Bend asked their new chief if the coming winter was going to be cold or mild. Since he was a chief in a modern society, he had never been taught the old secrets. When he looked at the sky, he couldn’t tell what the winter was going to be like.
Nevertheless, to be on the safe side, he told his tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members of the village should collect firewood to be prepared. But, being a practical leader, after several days, he got an idea. He went to the phone booth, called the Environment Canada Weather Service and asked, ‘Is the coming winter going to be cold?’
‘It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold,’ the meteorologist at the weather service responded.
So the chief went back to his people and told them to collect even more firewood in order to be prepared.
A week later, he called the Environment Canada Weather Service again. ‘Does it still look like it is going to be a very cold winter?’
‘Yes,’ the man at Weather Service again replied, ‘it’s going to be a very cold winter.’
The chief again went back to his people and ordered them to collect every scrap of firewood they could find.
Two weeks later, the chief called the Environment Canada Weather Service again. ‘Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?’
‘Absolutely,’ the man replied. ‘It’s looking more and more like it is going to be one of the coldest winters we’ve ever seen.’
‘How can you be so sure?’ the chief asked.
The weatherman replied, ‘The Indians are collecting a shitload of firewood!’
– Original Source: Email; Author: Unknown –

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Quote Investigator – Garson O’Toole diligently seeks the truth about quotations. Who really said what? – Rumor has it – a reference source for urban legends, folklore, myths, rumors, and misinformation.

Artists, Artisans, Crafts and Creative Minds
Bent Objects – Simple objects rearranged to create humorous figures.
Real Snail Mail – mail delivered by real snails.
Guillermo Forchino – delightful comic art objects that often resemble the world of comic strip and cartoon characters.
Curliosity – functional and decorative objects from brass and copper.
Pondering Pool – the humorous art of Susan Mrosek.
Egg-Bot Project – a machine that can draw intricate designs on spherical or egg-shaped objects.
Calvin Nicholls – wildlife and nature scenes crafted from archival paper by a Canadian artist.
Cut Out and Keep -online community makes and shares step-by-step craft tutorials.
Instructables – DIY instructions for just about anything you would want to make.
Drywall Art Sculpture -artist Bernie Mitchell uses drywall compound as a sculpture medium.
Michael Paul Smith and Elgin Park – Michael has crafted a 1/24th-scale recreation of everyday scenes from mid-20th century America, ranging from the 1920s to the mid-1960s.
Jake Cress – Jake creates classic, original, fantasy, and restored furniture made with 18th century techniques. In a world where furniture makers call themselves artists, Jake pokes fun by building pieces that make you laugh, and maybe think.
Kate McLean’s smell maps -Kate interviews a range of people—longtime residents, new arrivals and tourists—and sometimes even walks with them across their neighborhoods as they describe the smells they encounter. She then draws a map with contours or plots points that describe the range and intensity of smells as they waft from their sources.
Mad Man Knitting – from hobby to necessity, this man explores what knitting means to him.
Cardboard Box Office – a family that recreates movie sets out of cardboxes and household items.
The Jefferson Grid – Images from Google that fit in one square mile.

Lynne Truss – British writer and punctuation specialist
Robert Fulghum – American author and humorist
Stuart McLean – Canadian author of the Vinyl Cafe books and radio show – where the motto is: “We May Not Be Big, But We’re Small”.
Garrison Keillor – the wise, low key observations of the American author of the program ‘A Prairie Home Companion’.

Savage Chickens – Canadian artist Doug Savage’s cartoons on sticky notes.
‘Let it Slide’ Greeting Cards – by Charles Gulotta with illustrations by Ron Leishman of Toonaday
Simon’s Cat – a charming, yet mischievous cartoon cat that lives with Simon Tofield.
The Wizard of Draws – cartoons by Jeff Bucchino.
Vladstudio – playful wallpapers, apps, games and more by Russian digital artist Vlad Gerasimov.
Google Doodles – all the doodles that appear next to the Google Search box.
Doodlemum – Angie Stevens delightful drawings of her family and their daily adventures.
For Better or For Worse – an archive of the work of Canadian cartoonist Lynn Johnston.
The Middlest Sister – comics created by painstakingly cutting and pasting scrap paper and other items.
Mike Smith, Illustrator -an autobiographical comic about a family with young children.

The World Carrot Museum – everything you would ever want to know about Carrots
the decorated cookie – a fun and funky blog about decorated cookies, painted marshmallows and other crafty sweets.

Galleries and Museums
Google Cultural Institute – Digitized Art Galleries and Artists from around the World

Go Grey, Girl!
Louise Pitre – Canadian actress
Anne Kreamer – author of “Going Gray”.

Extreme Pumpkins – everything you need to know about pumpkin carving

Inspiration and Learning
TED Talks – A nonprofit devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading.

Susan Cain – The Power of Introverts, A TED talk. Also go to Susan’s web site with information about The Quiet Revolution.

Christopher Martin Photography – wildlife photographer from Alberta, Canada
Andrew White – day-to-day activities of a LEGO minifig photographer.

A Good Goodbye – The Family Plot Blog

Television, Movies, Performers
Rick Mercer – Canadian comedy and culture show
National Film Board of Canada -An online Screening Room that offers free streaming of documentary, animated films and interactive stories, all of which explore the world from a Canadian point of view.
Jeanne Robertson – extremely funny motivational speaker.

Trades and Training
profoundly disconnected – Mike Rowe’s website – the goal of Profoundly Disconnected is to challenge the absurd belief that a four-year degree is the only path to success.

The Quote Garden – established 1998 by Terri Guillemets
Quotations, The Other Pages – thousands of quotations drawn from hundreds of sources.
Demotivators – tongue in cheek – crushing dreams with hard truths.

Words and Images
Wordle – A free tool for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide.
Choosing and Using Type – You might never have consciously noticed the typefaces you read.