Archive for July, 2010

27
Jul
10

porches and south philly windows

26
Jul
10

JASON

The first letters of each month July to November, if placed in order, spell JASON. I propose that we begin to refer to this stretch of months as Jason. For example, it’s now early Jason and unusually hot. For example Jason just arrived and doesn’t plan to leave until winter.

25
Jul
10

spikey spikey

In visible and ultraviolet:

Up close:

23
Jul
10

Academe: 3 Notes

Notes:

- The library at Penn files Foucault’s ‘Archaeology of Knowledge’ in the Archeology section.

- 2 books came in the mail. One was Donald Barthelme’s biography and one was a collection of his essays. One of the back covers says he died at age 54. The other says 58. For once, the truth is nicer than the fiction, though 58 is still far too young.

- Still on the topic of Barthelmes, Donald’s brother, Frederick, is in a feud with his former university. The upshot of the feud is that FB is starting his own online magazine. It is called Rick Magazine. This means that when we practice constructing analogies for our GREs, we can now say that Frederick Barthelme is to the Mississippi Review as Emily Gould is to Gawker.

18
Jul
10

Word of the Day: kluge

Kluge, also spelled Kludge (rhymes with luge), has roots in Scottish and German but did not cross into American vernacular until the early 20th century as an almost industrial term. It attained the meaning of “crude but successful device” by the 60s when technicians at MIT applied it to their clunky but less-than-ideal computers. Currently the definition extends beyond computers or a physical Rube Goldberg type machine to any effective but perhaps inefficient assemblage that produces a solution.

15
Jul
10

(We cut out asides, but this is a story we wrote in real-time)

07
Jul
10

lists

Johuat’s mention of a “murder” of crows reminded me of a list of collective animal nouns that I saw in the “Book of Lists” one time.  I dug it up and there are some pretty great ones.  I googled them to see if they’re actually used and apparently they are.  If you happen to be trying to figure out a name for your neo-folk band right now this might be the ticket:

murder of crows
clowder of cats
leap of leopards
sloth of bears
rafter of turkeys
smack of jellyfish
skulk of foxes
labor of moles
peep of chickens
crash of rhinoceros
paddling of ducks
siege of herons
rag of colts
drift of hogs
charm of finches
trip of goats
knot of toads
shrewdness of apes
parliament of owls
troop of kangaroos
gaggle of geese
pride of lions
watch of nightingales
muster of peacocks
exaltation of larks

My personal favorites are “smack of jellyfish”, “parliament of owls” and “charm of finches”.  While I was googling them I turned up this even more exhaustive list of bird specific collective nouns, which includes different terms for when the birds are flushed out of the bushes, on the ground, or flying in a V (e.g. “bouquet of pheasants vs. “covey of pheasants”).

Is there a regulatory body for these names?  Was there?

Also, on the topic of lists, I found this list of cognitive biases while I was reading about the hacker that revealed the identity of the soldier who leaked the video (known as “Collateral Murder“) of an airstrike in Baghdad to Wikileaks.  I’m definitely guilty of every single one of them, but maybe it’s good to know that they are “official” so that I can try to avoid them.  I was struck by how many of them seem to be fundamental principles of advertising.




July 2010
M T W T F S S
« Jun   Aug »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.