This blog covers robots, friends, theology, fremdsprache, space, oneirotics, shards, history, meta, family, music, war, charity, lies, time, truth, rant, people, her, le sed, crumbs, drink, spielwort, verse, geography, venom, plagiarism, school, medicine, quotes, prose, changa, sports
Travel back to 2019-01, 2020-02, 2020-09, 2017-07, 2018-04, 2019-12, 2018-01, 2017-12, 2019-04, 2020-10, 2018-03, 2020-01, 2018-12, 2017-04, 2019-06, 2019-03, 2020-12, 2019-11, 2019-02, 2021-01, 2018-10, 2021-02, 2017-06, 2018-02, 2018-11, 2019-05, 2018-09, 2018-08
This file was a draft, of a comment, for an article, for a site, that still exists! Although, it doesn't do much these days, because there's really not much news to report, these days, is there?
<i><b>squelch</b> diss ting awhn?</i> For readers whose education, as did my own, included insufficient emphasis on numerical literacy in general, and specifically, the roles of different averages: <a href="">Hello, Sorry; I'm Dead.</a> Most importantly, I must emphasize that the image does not include the origin; the practical consequence of this conscious choice is that viewers are able to perceive subtle differences in a process that, during the time examined, displayed rather small variation: one so small as to be almost insignificant in the grand scheme of things. In order to draw conclusions from statistics that include both numeric and arithmetic mean, one must first consider exactly of what the sampled population consisted: in this case, blocks, bucketed in <a href="#How_often_does_the_network_difficulty_change.3F"> consecutive sets of 2016</a>; and the numerical aspect of each population member that was treated as datum: in this case,
As you can probably tell by now, I have learned too much, studied too much, done too much, drunk too much, said too much, and rationally plan to kill myself within a decade.
It's not much; definitely not enough for an effort at reconstructing the truth, however alleged you may allege mine be, nor should I give details sufficient to place the geography, leaving instead only cues for those who recognize, and voynichal salad for those who don't.
;;;;; title: Greenshifted Spake From The Head, or: How I Learned To Worry STOP tags: school, people, truth, geography, prose date: 2020-11-02 ;;;;; This one's dedicated to the school-girl-city who reminded me, during an expected interdiction of my restless pacing through the both sleepy and ambullomutationally hollow suburb, at the north of its tidal sewage, open to the freshest swills of the Ostajhian Puddle, where the innocent and guilty frolick alike through desert dunes, paved and tarred lanes, and under rooftop weather vanes, that although dogs go, and cats me-ouch, too, and snails die under John's Old Brown Shoe, one must never forget that goats can eat, bleat, climb, rhyme, and have an all-around jolly good time. Although I must acknowledge honorable mention to those who have encouraged me, through ridicule, anger, incredulous faith, and most importantly, dance-free safe, that although the most important techologies are those that no sane green man, while he patrols the Corridors of Time, should expect to find absent when falling through a one-way floor, there are a few that work no more. Instead of pretending to understand the broken symmetries of the vector guage, as normalized relative to few-dozen-component Johnson noise across a hand's span of mostly empty printed circuit boards, I will tell a story that never happened, about a soldier that my brother quite possibly personally instructed in every important skill of the variety that keeps certain cases alive, certain cases dead, and avoids shooting uncertain dire wolves in the head; and for the unavoidably pervasive imposition that words describe actions, instead of merely patterning the shape of the world across flat space, and mapping the projections sattallittic onto oblate spheroids without ever considering whether the Integral Trees could consider the unidirectionality of time's arrow as mathematical certainty, I will continue my avoidance of scalable vector graphics, bitmaps both compressed and chromatically reduced, and include a small amount of paragraph justification for purposes of allowing the prosecutors a sideband, through which they invariably accuse me of wasting fuel for music school; and I reserve in the hearts and minds of the architects untimed one special place for the invariable case, computationally equivalent to the Axiom of Choice, wherein the world's shape is described in softly spoken direction cosines and aggressively murdered men.
If you are not, nor have ever been, in the public service, you are advised to read no further; furthermore, if you have been in the public service for a time so short that it left no impression on your identity, and especially if your service was in enforcement branches other than the blues, you are also advised to stop reading. Now that my audience consists primarily of military veterans, medical professionals, and the various branches of police, I proceed:
It is difficult to determine what is permitted, and what is prohibited, in regards to cardiovascular ventures lasting longer than one kilometre, roundtrip. Since this fact is quite distressing, and since I wish the dispensation of advice to last no longer than absolutely necessary, my only advice to those who kept reading, regardless of whether they complied with the previous paragraph's advice, is the less frequent of the two imperatives yelled at me from George Herbert Mangan's window, during the late hours of morning classes:
GHM: DOAN GIT ARRESTID!
Getting arrested -- that is, detained, interrogated, and subsequently released after legal proceedings -- is a wonderful way to increase the town's cumulative viral load for the days in question, and what's worse, it comes almost entirely at the expense of others.
We'd run past the same stadia enough times to know each other both by name and face, although I doubt that my current recollection of this encounter survived the decade intact, and in fact, its very existence is quite likely creditable to an unbroken chain of mutual recommendations leading to an unexpected observation, appointment, and interview, necessarily not in that order. At an hour less common for such nearly missed collisions, than those more frequently attributed to chance alone, we exchanged a handful of words at the Atlantic side of a crosswalk on the street bounding the northern half of campus from the west. I do not know why and how she reached that encounter as she did, and it was obvious from the infinitesimally unchanged velocities of both arrivals and departures both that not much remained to be spoken, although here's what I'd have loquacised instead of my actual words, an the nighttime traffic prevented her from crossing to the FBMC atop those cut stone steps:
"I am on my way to the chapel, and for reasons better left unspecified, I hope to reduce my use of words therein; although I am likely to recite, speak, sing, pick, strum and quite possibly even respond to, my dear critics, I do hope that I may hear complaints without being asked to preach. Should you find that the doors of the conservatory have been locked by the time you reach them, know that you'll be welcome to take shelter in the service's audience, listening and speaking as you see fit, until such time as your return is expected at the dormitory."
The following post is dedicated mostly to my teachers: of languages, both classical and modern, both kicking sand ... otherwise who'd `roll their eyes, sinning in their urn upon realizing the importance I place then and do now heap upon their efforts, may their efforts outshine the stars?
During the past summer, I encountered another one of those perennial botherances: the friendcount. Despite my casual evasion attempt, my interlocutor graciously insisted upon an answer from the ranges of simple integers -- known to you, perhaps, as the "Natural Numbers", at the perennial behest of Dear ACK and Other Keepers of That Ineffable Flame -- tallied in any manner deemed appropriate, leaving algorithmic details to be disclosed at my later discretion. I answered that question honestly, although imprecisely, despite the everpresent temptation to properly discredit the question as meaningless.
"You're answering so slowly, I can almost see a loading gif on your forehead."
I laughed, possibly allowing that little spinner to headshot its way down my nose, finally retorting:
"The trouble's not thinking of the people. That's easy. The trouble's doing the math. For example,"
At which point some variation on the olde Navy SEAL copypasta'd be appropriate, echoing from the source like Pink's wife's verse in Ezrin's ultima, since as I've frequently attested, the most conservable resource is thought to be thought to be thought!!
"Actually, this is how math is done. You know that sketch about those who merely 'like' science, staring at its ass while it sciences along, waiting for someone else to actually do the damn science? Well, this is how the mathematics getshishshelph done! Rote memorization of another's proofs, imperial as be their names may be, won't add not one single bit to entropy, not even one. Entropy, as you've likely too soon discovered, is only collected when recollecting an error."
tense that I rote but then wished I hadn't, wished I hadn't - Jacopo Belbo - Umberto's Echo
There! I've gone and done it now: intentionally misquoted a master at his art, and at the coward's time, too: well, after the man is dead, anyone can say he said something that he didn't say and all you'll get is an estate tax attack.
Umberto claimed, from the recorded words attributed to a fictional antehero, that there's no discipline of forgetting, for the sort of information that oft chills our minds at quite the nonlocal mesoform, although metastable upon fine inquiry. Let me only mention that there are forgetful folk, and forgettable peoples, and before I've even extrapolated that individuals pervade the entire basis, you've gone and read too far: you may become unforgetten, if you'd like it ior not, and the only hope left is that the... oh, megabytes of variance - heritable, discernable, once twice thrice differentiable yet no further! Cease, fair Pandora, for I stocked that box so scantly that you'll wonder whither why.
Karl, Max, and... well, Ludwig (for lack of a better blamehole) walk out of the pub, because two have a beef and the third sold books on who'll win it. There's cold rain pooled in the alleyway's cracked pavement, flowing softly towards the gutter as the warm rain overflows the bounds, ripple by reflected ripple, but the clamouring boots make quick work of those cesspools, forming a ring around our three champions.
After a brief verbal dispute regarding directions perpendicular to the compass rose, as pertains to belts, and the sportsmanship of a flail improvised from a belt terminated by an oversized buckle, the clamour calls for a less partial referee, so Mycroft fishes out a brace of shattered glasses, a well-rotten dishrag, and an intact bottle of 202-proof rum, for use as emergency disinfectant.
Details of the fight are available upon request from eyewitnesses, although allegedly the subsequent claimants of stubs from the well-made books were glad to demonstrate exactly what happened; all I know is that once the salted plasma flowed so freely that none present could distinguish one pavestone from the next, Mycroft took aside the winner.
"See that river, into which yon gutter drains?"
The winner nods.
"Here's your Planck, and I never want to see you on this side of it ever again."
Barely over a decade ago, I had my conversation last (at the time of this writing) with an inspiration - words don't do him justice, so I'll use as few as possible, though fallibility and fatalism compel the use of a few extra. I don't remember our full exchange - for it took place over minutes scattered down the hours and years, blown across forest trails, grassy diamonds, and endlessly flowing pitch, level for a fleeting lifetime - so I'll avoid quoting the exact words leading to the following misinterpretations, although if reinterpret them you must, I recommend that you do so with the assistance of one or more of the locutors present at the time of that speaking...
- If you must shoot, shoot to kill.
- If your first shot isn't likely to kill, make sure you're sufficiently familiar with the firearm that you can send off a handful.
- Kill with at least one bullet.
- Don't be the guy who gets shot in his sleep on the beach.
- Don't write that book.
- If you must enlist, think once; think twice; and enlist.
He is quite likely to have meant at least one of those interpretations, and someday I hope to ask him which of those unintended were not incorrect.
`` Рукописи не горят. ,, - Михаиле Булгакове
Before the lies begin, I'd like to anchor this speculation partway through a conversation that actually did occur, somewhere near the Euclidean midpoint between the cafeteria of the modern languages building and the best vantage point on campus, although you'd have to use a proprietarily-weighted geometry for the mean calculation to land in the talking-aloud part of the relevant library, rather than the graveyard floors; and the talking indeed was allowed, and loud, and lewd, but the rudest dude was in too good a mood to tell the future doctors to act their age, so she and I spoke as soft as we could, short of actually whispering, while that orgy of sophomoric ineptitude raged in the rest of the room.
"You should've left a notebook", she scolded. "If you'd left a notebook at this desk, like I left one at mine, then nobody would've taken your seat."
I shrugged away the matter, for the setting sun's image, crawling up the opposed wall, bathed in its soft glow the gradually emptying room, and there was now no shortage of computers. I sat where I had before, and loaded a questionably-obtained digital reproduction of the documentation in question.
Seeing where my attention went, she asked: "You're studying from the book instead of the class materials?"
I nodded, launching into an endless paean to the greatness of the book, rapidly terminated thanks to her impatient impoliteness, likely diagnosable as attention deficit disorder by the moronic future-professionals who so recently had rendered the room entirely unfit for studying.
"Have you ever seen her book?"
Instead of asking whether she meant the author's personal copy, or some library's well-worn copy, filled with the hints and tears of past generations, I shook my head; words were rapidly becoming quite an expensive commodity to spend, as I had entered the lexical storm of an organic chemistry textbook's contents table, and needed every drop of dopamine on task.
"If it's such a good book, and you like it so much, why don't you buy it?"
At which point, I must've made some joke about how I'd rather buy her, even though she hadn't read a single page of that book, than a book that is too heavy for her to survive having dropped on her head; although I doubt I'd have survived getting the pavement dropped on my head from the height of that room; although not claiming to have said that means that the only lie in this post is the fact that it is tagged as such.
In closing, I'll elide the book's title, as there are half a dozen different works with the same name in just the first page of search results, although I will mention that the author came to be known as "Bruice Almighty".
As you may be aware, efforts are underway to revisit, comprehend, and ultimately digitize the unpublished research notes logged by the pseudonym allegedly signed as Borodin, no mean feat given the centurial culture barriers blasted apart by the brave volunteers. Although Alexander Shulgin may have cast open landscapes innumerable of both the imaginary manifestations of reality, and the physical attainment of hitherto mere amorphisms, he also found himself at the precipice of a language chasm deep yet narrow: for example, had he needed to verify that his friends and relations could recognize lexicographic racemization in eightth-bit-cleaned compilations of IUPAC nomenclatures - or worse yet, disclaim their own proficiencies in one or another of such disassembly exercises - he may have never encountered the question of how exactly "2CB" decompiles as "brominated two-carbon notafueladditive"... if you're still reading, there's a chance that you remember what I have forgot.
In the hope of finding common understanding, recognizing the preexisting conceptual landscape, and not getting too worked up about whether discussion of how many concepts this list contains is conversation or syllogism, I'll elaborate upon last semester's practical work, starting with my quick rephrasing of instructor comments regarding an educational recreation of four experiments performed just over one hundred years ago, all of which exhibited at the time of their publication an unexpected degree of discontinuity, despite the prevailing theories regarding the nature of the underlying continua:
nb: comments and grades for either student could apply to the other, since they worked together on all parts of these experiments, interpretation, and presentation in the first week, you arrived prepared, with questions about the apparati. your elucidations of the prevailing theories improved markedly in the second week. in computing the statistical expectation values, you performed several computations yet presented the results of only one. merely listing which source measurements caused statistical failure is unacceptable, without discussion of possible reasons for each measurement's exclusion, and your grade was reduced for this reason, and for omitting an additional procedure made possible by the preassembled wiring of the provided electromotive forcing apparatus and documented in the reference notes. your presentation of the results suffered as a consequence of disclosing choices leading to the samples ultimately correlated against the prevailing theory, a disclosure which reduced the time available for discussing alternative wirings. your reference notebooks are incomplete: roughly half consisted of rephrasings of the prevailing theory, and you could have saved ink by specifying one of the previously published works as a reference standard; and you failed to detail your rationale for choices made during experiment, computation, and debriefing.
Since my final grade in that semester was lower than that given by this instructor, above the minimal level considered passing although regrettably closer to that than the perfect score, and quite satisfactory given my policies for allocating study time and mental effort for schoolwork, I consider that to have been a good learning experience.
Incidentally, the numbers relevant for rendering the previous reflection against
the one percent decimal background across half a year of an arbitrary sparse set
of the distinguished portion of a fourfold metric are:
'#(63 89 76 87 30 84)
Reconstructing the machine that produced such a trace is neither trivial nor ...
... and in case you were wondering, the four experiments are all spanned by attempts to measure Ohmic impedance of fluids (e.g. Helium, Hydrargyrum) dilute well past chemical inertness, and modulation of such measurements by the nature of the irradiation upon the circuit component emitting the lepton.
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, And sorry I could not travel both And be one traveler, long I stood And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth; Then took the other, as just as fair, And having perhaps the better claim, Because it was grassy and wanted wear; Though as for that the passing there, Had worn them both about the same, And both that morning equally lay, In leaves no step had trodden black. Oh, I kept the first for another day! Yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubted if I should ever come back. I shall be telling this with a sigh Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--- I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.
... at least, that's how I found the undergrown, overbent one, winding 'twixt excessive capitals, elided punctuals, and italicized in a painstaking digital tribute to merchandise sold in the author's name, and guessing by the author's fame, the trees may not have died in vain.
Here's an other:
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and sorry I could not travel both, and be one traveler, long I stood. I looked down one as far as I could, to where it bent in the undergrowth. Then took the other, as just as fair, and having perhaps the better claim... for it was grassy, and wanted wear! Though as for that: my glancing glare had worn them both about the same. They both that morning equally lay, in leaves no step had trodden black, so I kept the first for another day; yet knowing how way leads on to way, I doubt that I shall ever come back. I shall be telling this with a sigh, somewhere ages and oceans hence: "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I -- I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the `dif-fer-ence."
In case you're wondering: "Here's an other" is not an intentional anachronism for the sake of clockmelt, but rather a transliteration from Hebrew.
Check out this 8bit-clean compactification of notes, written by mine own hand, during a recent seminar delivered for the organic chemistry department, on the subject of academic publication, by a doctor named Neville Compton, who spoke as representative of a publication conglomerate; out of respect for the academic process, and the prudence necessary for correctness, I will give credit where credit is due, although the full names of audience members are not disclosed out of respect for their privacy:
2019-02-18T15:42:33 notes during SOC Seminar, 2019-02-14T15:00 Dr Neville Compton von Ang.Che, EIC 'forest vs trees' cf numbers: Erdos, Bacon... worandie Bell curve for the Nobel graph? unidimensional academic noise: launch/land density of journals/societies didimensional research mappings: lat/long are only relevant at lowest&highest resolutions, languages (of publications&conferences) are more relevant 'What Would Hipassus Publish?' re: publication (cf lateral vs longitudinal communication, ie, 3+1- metric): "language all over the place", in abstracts (and the rest of the paper), he means that authors conflate vernaculars with 'standard english' [noshit.gif] "none of our editors are active in research" cf tenure - academic vs editorial "publication ethics" academic ethics from the editor's perspective: plagiarism, misdirection, interest conflicts, exclusivity violations (in no particular order) journals use antifraud software!? drywear!? what idiocy is this. 'who will fuzz the fuzzers?' Editor's Note: Please do not shout from the gallery! datafraud detection: are graphics considered wrt viewing on screens, printed, or as raw data? this I asked at the end, and he claims: they've only launched systems for raw data, and are still mulling over presentation forms. citation DAG: prune early, prune often! reviewers are not necessarily a blindable factor, so journals (at least, those owned by his conglomerate) consider author recommendations and interest-conflict disclosures "new vs innovative" - what's the difference between 'novation' and innovation? this is 'patent nonsense', mais c'est pumpernickle! everything becomes FeNi when it's all fini. journals respond in a variety of manners, rejection does not necessarily mean the research itself is invalid, and could just be an opportunity to revise its draft for publication; often the editor will offer comments (their own, and/or based on peers' reviews) elaborating why exactly the draft was rejected rather than accepted with suggested modifications. speaker presents a "pyramid" graphic, reminiscent of food pyramid, but I, sitting aside Umberto's ashes, think of that trivial Manutius<->Garamond pingpong... editors accept responsibility for the whole review ensemble's opinions, thus suffering appeals, blames, etc: they are the diplomats of academia! the manager-psychologists, calm-skinn ed thick-headed lizards, soaking up environmental energy. What would Malaclypse do? social media leads to rapid dispersal yet also to rapid fragility of shifts (cf orders of phase transition, fragility in the literal, engineering sense) ... at which point, RA comments in tangential response to NC's question "if you hadda earna million pounds in twenty seconds, what would jesus do?" that he'd ask for a fistbump. initially I misinterpret, since RA and I communicate as silently as practical, knowing that the entire classroom hears our every word, as I do not whisper, and superfluid tetranucleomers do not sign. my interpretation entails social media's brittlifaction of the infosphere as arising from electrodynamics in a manner similar to friction. final thought, before stage is opened for audience questions: the challenge of 'social engineering' the publication process hinges upon an editor's (thus also their peers') susceptib ility to influence by 'screen numbers', i.e., number of followers. not all numbers are created equal, although some numbers are more equal than others!
Postscriptum: The documentation processor aimed at conventions wherein a doublequote indicates speech by the presenter, and a singlequote indicates stenographer neologism.
nota bene: - please include statement to be proven, at top of file, - along with the assumptions deemed indispensible, - not necessarily in that order. - thank you *** 1a1 student assumed: - field of positive integers - from which, logarithms are extracted at a sufficiently high base - autopsist has enough humorsense to creatively disinterpret names of chosen variables in the context of locally-smooth metrics. for your consideration: - the integer constants in this exercise had historical meanings for the current operator of the autopsy machine. *** 1a2 student simulated: - piled cannonballs until reaching closed-form series collapse likely assumptions: - familiarity with common integer sequences - access to well-indexed encyclopedia **** for the benefit of Mr Kite: there will be a show tonight, with cannonballs. how about these classes of complexity computation? - i. naturals are either a constant, or sums of a constant. - ii. triangles are sums of all consecutive positive integers. - iii. squares are sums of two consecutive triangular numbers. - iv. square pyramids are sums of all consecutive square numbers. - v. now, you are thinking with exponential implosions.
The remainder of the proof mistranslations are left as an exercise for the future.
Sherlock Holmes and Professor Moriarty walk into a bar; not at the same time, of course, and most likely through different doors, on different days of weeks occasionally synchronized and often wholly missing, until after a decade of such temporal anisotropy, they wind up sitting as near as politely possible: as philosophers dine, they've left an empty stool betwixt for the Lady, and scattered charms to ward off bad tramps and divert the ones in need of redirection.
Since it's been centuries since The Fall, cancellation, reboot, shoot, toot, and least importantly, endless academic deconstructivism of the theological substrate radiation and reflexive mechanical reassembly of leftover operators, they end up discussing that long-lost mutual friend, that lalalamamafaka: General Relativity.
Sherlock does do his best, but Moriarty is asking the questions this time. Soon enough, Mycroft finishes pouring a trivially hypergeometric shuralgebraic or two, slaps'em down on the bar without a drop spilled, not before instinctively ensuring that its level plane is locally flat, soft yet insufficiently malleable to serve as an example of ductility, brittle yet not enough to crack under the stress and strain of tension and solvation, and most importantly, roughened imperceptibly to their fingertips by abrasion against shattered glass and feathering tools.
Silence reigns. You can hear every conversation, for a distemporal ephemerality.
Mycroft scatters compasses of all parities, arbitrarily parting the arrangement with an unwieldy doubly straightedged knife upon which are engraved the words:
You got me!
... but "the story is true", so I'll tell it the way it should have happened, and leave the retrosynthetic ungineering to the paralegal information police:
Shortly after entering some fast-track research program at the chemistry school of the exact sciences department at Tel Aviv University, expressely advertised in their printed materials as being aimed at those most enterprising youths who's life goals found themselves radically shifted outta the transcendental extension after Breaking Bad, I found myself sitting in a lecture hall watching that cool genius preparing to hold forth on the local consequences of immutable truths, while excitable students chattered all about me as I silently lamented the vanishing chance I'd ever recalibrate the long-abandoned disparser.
HER: I'm so hungry! I'm so bored! I'm so, so, so... HIM: Oh, you're hungry? I had such an amazing breakfast today, if you'd stayed the night like I wish I'd offered you to, I would've denatured you some eggs like you always wished. HER: ...! HIM: Yeah, no joke. Sunny-side up, over-easy, scrambled, any style you like... they're all dead, long dead, and delicious. The only problem is that it takes so long to cook properly: you need to first spend about a life and a half learning the art, and another seven generations amassing familial wealth that will allow your children to train in the same, and then you actually need to allocate time for the work itself! HER: Wha---
At which point I leaned my phonicone in their direction:
ME: You can save a few seconds in your daily egging by using only one hand per egg. Trivial once mastered, and you've got an entire life to practice, neh? HER: [spinning round] Ahhhh, I bet YOU are the chef who went back to cooking school!
Damnit, Lady, doan blow ma cover; shut up and listen to the man teach kinetics!
In the time that's passed since the last nucleation radiation, forces dark and wondrous have conspired to invalidate the crumbly metaphor, forcing the use of another. What's the use? Rice won't refuse, scattered by the handful or sleeping, steeping, waiting for thermobaric renaturation, perhaps hoping for a date with the polite intestine... or merely biochemical amylysis; what a ruse!
- Cutoff Time
- What's That Trash?
- Shelter From The Worm
- Diamond Anvil Recycling
- Monarchy Retirement Plan
- Who's Bass Is It, Anyway?
- Donald Rumsfeld's Omission
"Let us learn to joke... then perhaps we shall love the truth. But let us beware of telling our jokes till they have been bettered by the wakes of conversation." - l'Ourobohr
Just as compressing a fluid past a first-order phase transition inevitably catalyzes hitherto unemerged phenomena, so will the aggressed square-packing of a lecture hall eventually collide the elliptic peg with a dodecahedral hole; for although most students, whether having undergone graduation like so much unwashed glassware, or yet bearing the whips and scorns of time-worn institutions, resemble Euclid's nonsense better than a brick of solid oxygen, the rare exceptions emerge differently shaped from the factory schools. Amusing in retrospect as may be the lattice defects that emerge from such collisions, they do tend to strain the participants.
I found myself sitting right near the audience geocenter, a similar-humored friend at my left having dogged me to my seat, which I had picked not due to its vacancy, but due to the occupant to its right. I'd yet to speak with her, but thanks to the curse of uncorrected distance hearing, I'd heard enough to tumble headfirst down the slippery slope of puppy infatuation: she'd related to friends of the same dual-major that her new hobby was treating her daily dogpark visits as the opportunity to meet Mr Right. Sadly, I had no familiar canine excuse to present myself to her in such a manner, having parted ways from my best friend two years earlier. Reminding myself that even if we'd met while watching our dogs sniff eachother's butts, we probably wouldn't be imitating them right away, instead wasting countless kilolitres of air exchanging nonsense in the hope of breaking the proverbial ice (or at the very least, thawing it out a little).
Naturally, somatic vessel of the flaggelar germline that I am, I sought an opening; and naturally, being bored to death (and back again) of the inane claptrap flapping about between the well-packed squares all around, I sought an original opening. As I fished for worthwhile words, she began fishing for the right pen in her cute little case... on which were printed, in block capitals, three to a side, the words:
SO MUCH WORK SO LITTLE TIME
... which, in case you're unfamiliar with the physical sciences, is the six-word story of everything we learned that semester. Blinded by coincidence, I blurted out a shot from the hip, taking the time to neither draw nor even greet my opponent: "... that a special case for thermodynamics class?"
Her response, short and sweet, was painfully close to "LOL!", but lo and behold: she elided that second coronal lateral fricative as an unpronouncable terminal phoneme, leaving instead the last first word a man wants to hear.
"WE EVEN HAVE EARMUFFS, IF ANY OF YOU WANT A COUPLE."
Fine, the rest of this story will not contain shouted words, although the use of CamelCase at the start of sentences may be preserved; anyway, it pertains to a multiple-choice exam sat by the author recently, where the primary hindrance presented to the students consisted of FAA-compliant noise. Noting that nobody needed even a single muff, the proctor glanced at my choice of seating.
I nod, scattering allergens to assure the poison sniffers that the correct ghola had showed up for the Mentat Bowl, and prudently leave my cheating machines concealed yet readily accessible. Another proctor kindly wished me good luck, although the whorls of spacetime conspired me to think of the all-too-recent practice wherein children were forced to conform to seating limitations regardless of neurology. Ah well, we all bleed our age one way or another.
"Good luck!" said just about everyone, whether aloud, to themselves, or just to pretend they hadn't run out of mere politeness (quite the scarce resource).
Eventually, I notice a unital (as opposed to unitary, i.e. dimensional) discrepancy. These buggers are pernicious, especially when the exam purports to pertain to the physical sciences, but in truth does not contain a single SI-qualified value, opting instead for alphabet soup interspersed with "happy particles". I flag down a passing professor.
"You have a question for this one?", he mimes, doubtlessly thinking of the overworked teaching assistant.
"YES, YOU SILLY GOOSE, WHO ELSE?" I shout at nobody in particular, while nodding silently to respect the silence theater quivering at the brink of metastability. He walks over, punts my question at the nearest underspecified constant, and wanders off to give polite hints to less helpful questioners.
I guess it's time for me to eat more rotting fructose, since competitive thermodynamics is an awfully energy-consuming game: time is in finite supply, proportioned according to the Cayley-Hamilton nulleph (if you've got that sphere mapped; if you don't, please do: see Poincare's cut if you've already passed Dedekind). I don't blame that professor for my inevitable failure at this exam, as he'd actually given quite a helpful hint: he could tell I was asking for him to make a public clarification regarding a sloppily-worded question, the correct answer to which was painfully obvious, so he instead reminded me that the Grand Canon controlls how many ells deep drinks the spider.
Teacup - empty; birdseed - messy; orange - too flagrant a juicy snack, and there's still half the alloted time left! What could I possibly do now, other than start to actually work out the silly little calculus exercises? Maybe asking the proctors to unplug the noisy desktop computer fanning itself for no apparent reason, or at the very least tell us which prion it was busy refolding for the good of humanity, although somehow I suspect the answer to that would've been closer to:
Hush, little baby; don't say a word! ... never mind that noise you heard. It's just the wormholes in your ear, crawling thru that strength we fear.
At which point, the student to my right gets up, hands in his papers, and moves to leave.
"No! Stay!" quoth an audience member, who had elected to sit the exam undercover, out of true respect for the process.
"Sorry, honey, I've got a plane..." he replies, politely ignoring her "Can't it wait?" as he glides out, better than the most professional of bettors.
At least the desktop had decided to continue cooking its motherboard in silence by the time our friendly noisemaker began running his own fans overhead.
Lying along the shoals of inattentiveness, listening to each phonon (yes, I know how to use that word uncorrectly, too;) surf along the pitch black glideway, way below, I realize I've begun overhearing yet another conversation that never happened.
TRIGGER WARNING: IF YOU KNOW ME FROM SCHOOL, YOU MIGHT KNOW THESE PEOPLE TOO; ONLY THE WORDS, LEXEMES, AND CORRELATES HAVE BEEN CHANGED, TO PROTECT THE PRIVACY OF THE UNNOTICED AND THE SANCTITUDE OF YOUR MIND.
Three doctors - of philosophy, naturally - are quibbling over which rights to violate when administering the exam, in the hope that one will be sufficiently distrauchted by some best jest that a quick bid for the silverware could be made.
Quoth the theoretician: "First of all, the exam must be as fair as possible; all students who are required to pass the exam, must have an uncorrelated likelihood of passing the exam, and any students who wish to pass the exam, must have an uncorrelated likelihood of passing the exam, and any correlations arising unintentionally must be uncorrelated with each other correlate, in so far as --"
He's been interrupted by now: "That's a load of nonsense. You've written the exam by now, so why don't you tell us what's unfair about it? Noone will be judging you. Why don't you... do it in the code?"
Before he can deliver the correct, coherent, counterpoint, the third one suggests: "Any unfairness unavoidable in the exam should be biased in favor of those students who have attended lectures, in some power per portion of time wasted together."
"WHAT!?" is the inevitable reply, so he continues, explaining exactly what he means: "The exam is unfair, and always will be, so I'd rather at least encourage us to all waste our time together. I don't want academics to devolve into each student spending a semester in a silent sterile cube with a pay-per-view port to some quintessence datahose and a shelf full of dead-tree graffiti painstakingly curated by some long-dead Adlai."
Silence. You could hear a pin drop, land right-way up, and blow up the tire of the next hrududu blundering down the street (and what a fine alarm clock that'd be!).
"Did you just use a student's name as an expletive?", asked the practician of theoretical jurisprudence.
"Yes, because we all know exactly what I meant by that; if you have a problem with what I said, say whatever you want instead, but let me finish my gottanjecture."
The Oldest Joke In The World
PONGO: I'm having trouble meeting my creditors! BINGO: I say, dash it! To be precise,.: who wouldn't?
The Blessed Joke In The World
Historical note: the following joke has been heavily revised from the original version, which contained a punchline so wholly unamusing that it has repelled the Island of Stability even further away from me.
Two blonde med students walk out of the biochem final. One says, "That damn final question! What was he thinking, asking us to name the single most important element for the continuation of life as we know it, and justify our choice? Such a dumb question only Philosophers of Semiotics could get wrong." The other replies, "I know, right? It's obviously Phosphorous." The first stops, and finally speaks, quavering in fear: "What are you talking about? It's clearly that one metal, I keep forgetting its name. Do you remember what's the ligand of methylcobolamine?" Ignoring her question, the dumb one blurts out: "Vitamins are important, sure, but wouldn't you agree that no energy transfers can occur without the near-equilibrium thermodynamics of driven fluctuations in those octokisdekaphosphomers?"
The Most Expensive Joke To Not Get
SATOSHI: Ya like DAGs? GAUTAMA: Ja sed also sprache posztifly towards Cat.
The Most Obscure Joke In The World
Q: What can you say about the special unitary samana squaredance? A: Don't get it sandy! (might be all we have to eat...)
The Politest Joke I'll Ever Type
... with apologies to nobody in particular!
Content Warning: This post contains a renovated memory. It is an attempt to recollect things said and done during the day which I consider yesterday.
Two main arteries skirt the coast between the clavicle and lower jawbone of the self-styled "Jewish Democracy", aptly numbered two and four (since without them, they can't even, you know, get anywhere). Unlike oxygen-rich blood, licentially-poor cripples can cycle pretty much anywhere they like, blazing capillaries across any barriers surmountable (within the limits of reason, physics, and decorum). Somewhere midway between where the first route (that's Road Two to you) lefts South and the city puns itself divinely away from its founder's pronomen, lies Seas City, a rather hivelike glass-and-cement factory for storage, feeding, and production of humans. Parks and fountains line the southwestern edges, one of the latter bearing a bold sign strictly prohibiting any entrance to the water (which runs less than finger-deep and more than crystal-clear).
I had to break that recommendation twice: once, to pick up the garbage that the idiot cubs left behind (and other idiot cubs also left behind, when I suggested that they, having already broken the recommendation, pick up the other cubs' crap); and secondly, to fish out my dumb-smart phone, which continued working despite falling face-down (until thirty hours later, when it suddenly remembered some wetness deep within). While smugly wiping moisture off the outer surfaces, gloating that my phone was so dumb that it could still work after such a dip, some Brit and brought its cubs to play the 'Hop around on the fountain without breaking the recommendation' game.
Adlai: Where are you from? Brit: London Adlai: Ahh. I'm from... wait, let's see if you remember your heraldry. Brit: Wales? Adlai: No... [ADLAI inverts sweatshirt, which had doubled as red flag to indicate human presence in the field; enter WHITE LION RAMPANT upon a RED FIELD] Adlai: Exeter! Brit: ... Adlai: ~New~ England Brit: Ahh. Stay there!
Seven hours previous, I'd seen the New Sun rise. Seven hours later, I'd see the Old Sun set. That was a good day.