Norwegian Street Names #1

“So I took a different route from the bus stop to the office today, which culminated in a rather unmanly, girlish giggle.”


Dick’s Way

To make matters worse — or better, depending on your sense of humour — this street intersects with “Bombakken”, which creatively translates to “Bum Hill”. Well, actually more like “Gate Hill” if we ignore those delightful double meanings, but that’d just ruin the fun.

Just a moment … Oh, there it went!

I could of course say that it was on purpose, and that I was going to wait for 8:09:10 PM, except we don’t do PM in this house. No, siree. We’re civilized Norwegians who follow a 24 hour clock, and no ifs or buts about it.

Someone suggested that I might have waited for 09:10 11.12.13, but on one hand I consider that to be cheating, because I really think that all six digits are supposed to be in play, and on the other hand I was still asleep. When I sleep, I don’t mess about.

Fortunately, though, this still left me with a time at a quarter and sixteen seconds past two o’clock in the afternoon, by which time I was not only awake, but in fact at work.

That moment
As posted on my Facebook wall at more or less the precise moment

I guess this wraps it up for the fancy date-and-time number sequences for this century. That is, unless someone comes up with a thirteenth month within the next year (and a fourteenth month the year after that), and I don’t quite see that happening, not even in a mad, mad world such as ours.

All right, so Americans may argue that next year brings both 09:10:11 12-13.14 and 12.13.14 15:16:17, but I protest on the grounds that writing dates as MM.DD.YY (Month.Day.Year) makes as much sense as would writing time as HH:SS:MM (Hour:Second:Minute), and is just as backwards and uncivilized as using feet and inches, pounds and gallons in the age of Metric, and I believe this with every ounce of my heart.

That aside, now I know that I can sleep soundly tonight, safe in the knowledge that I have shared this little moment with you all, a moment which has been of absolutely no consequence whatsoever.

It’s little things like this which give me peace of mind.


Terrorist Threat Alert (as NOT written by John Cleese)

The venerable John Cleese, looking perhaps a tad miffed, or peeved, that people are still, wrongly, attributing this text to him.

I picked this one from the Facebook wall of a friend because I thought it was brilliant. However, before we cut to the cheese (did you see what I did there?) I’ll take a moment to point out that, despite appearances and numerous allegations to the contrary on the Internet, this text was certainly not written by John Cleese, nor was it written as recent as 2013 (though some additions and edits may have been). Still, I’ve decided to leave it pretty much as I found it, with just a few minor edits and modifications for the sake of typography.

For more information about this not being Cleese’s work, look up this link:

Debunk and corrections by

And now, with the disclaimer, the corrections and the formalities out of the way, over to something completely different:



The English are feeling the pinch in relation to recent events in Syria and have therefore raised their security level from “Miffed” to “Peeved.” Soon, though, security levels may be raised yet again to “Irritated” or even “A Bit Cross.” The English have not been “A Bit Cross” since the blitz in 1940 when tea supplies nearly ran out. Terrorists have been re-categorized from “Tiresome” to “A Bloody Nuisance.” The last time the British issued a “Bloody Nuisance” warning level was in 1588, when threatened by the Spanish Armada.

The Scots have raised their threat level from “Pissed Off” to “Let’s get the Bastards.” They don’t have any other levels. This is the reason they have been used on the front line of the British army for the last 300 years.

The French government announced yesterday that it has raised its terror alert level from “Run” to “Hide.” The only two higher levels in France are “Collaborate” and “Surrender.” The rise was precipitated by a recent fire that destroyed France’s white flag factory, effectively paralyzing the country’s military capability.

Italy has increased the alert level from “Shout Loudly and Excitedly” to “Elaborate Military Posturing.” Two more levels remain: “Ineffective Combat Operations” and “Change Sides.”

The Germans have increased their alert state from “Disdainful Arrogance” to “Dress in Uniform and Sing Marching Songs.” They also have two higher levels: “Invade a Neighbour” and “Lose.”

Belgians, on the other hand, are all on holiday as usual; the only threat they are worried about is NATO pulling out of Brussels …

The Spanish are all excited to see their new submarines ready to deploy. These beautifully designed subs have glass bottoms so the new Spanish navy can get a really good look at the old Spanish navy.

Australia, meanwhile, has raised its security level from “No worries” to “She’ll be right, Mate.” Two more escalation levels remain: “Crikey! I think we’ll need to cancel the barbie this weekend!” and “The barbie is cancelled.” So far no situation has ever warranted use of the last final escalation level.

John Cleese
British writer, actor, and tall person

And as a final thought – Greece is collapsing, the Iranians are getting aggressive, and Rome is in disarray. Welcome back to 430 BC.

Life is too short …

And finally a show of hands, everyone who managed to not read that without hearing it in John Cleese’s voice 🙂

Uup! Goes The Element

According to science press¹, people in white lab² coats and protective goggles at Lund University in Sweden have managed to produce a new element (number 115 of the Periodic Table, to be pedantic about it, a slot which, based on this, I take to have been hitherto vacant and aching for tenants) by banging together innocent and unsuspecting atoms of calcium and americum, successfully making the two elements stick together as one … for less than one second. I find that rather cute, in a sort of Britney Spears’ marriage kind of way.

I vaguely remember a time when the science du jour was to split atoms. Occasionally beer atoms. We’ve been doing that for, what, a century? Beer atoms for far longer, if I know us at all.

Now, although I struggle dearly to picture a commercially viable long-term application of an elusive substance that can only be manufactured at great cost a handful of atoms at a time, each of which with a shelf life of a heartbeat (and I can only try to imagine how they intend to get around that in the terms and conditions of the product warranty), I did take rather fondly to the creativity of the comments section:

“When I was a kid we only had oxygen, carbon, and helium and we got by just fine.”

“When I was a kid we had just protons and electrons and we were grateful.”

“You had protons?! We were so poor we could only afford electrons. And we had to share them. Mom tried to make us feel better by calling it a valence and saying that having it would make us stronger.”

“Protons and electrons? Luxury. We used to dream of protons and electrons. 15 of us lived in a rip in the space-time continuum, with only a bit of dark matter to keep us warm at night. Sure, it wasn’t structurally identified and cataloged, but it was particulate matter to us.”

“Kids and their stinkin’ atomic particles. Back in my day we just had energy. And we were happy, dammit!”

“Geez… All we had was earth, wind, and fire…”

“You kids with your fancy particles and elements. When I was a kid, we had Aether.”

“All we had were Adam and Eve, and believe me – you didn’t want anything else.”

Only the slightest typographical edits by me.

Oh, the Python-ness!


  1. If you missed the link, here
  2. That’s “lab” as in “laboratory”, not “Labrador”. Woof!

Abstract yourself through the Cuils of life

The Cuil is a unit of measurement, where one Cuil is one level of abstraction away from any given real-life situation.

I don’t know what it says about me when I think that this makes perfect sense, but then again, for reasons unknown, most conversations in our home, especially the ones involving myself and either one of our daughters, appear to hover somewhere around the 3 Cuils mark. With myself and both our daughters involved, 5 to 6 Cuils is not only attainable, but in fact rather commonplace.

Unfortunately, and without due explanation, the video only covers Cuils one through six. An abstraction of 7 Cuils reads as follows:

7 Cuils: I give you a hamburger. The universe is engulfed within itself. A bus advertising hotdogs drives by a papillon. It disapproves. An unnatural force reverses Earth’s gravity. You ask for a hamburger. I reciprocate with a mildly convulsing potato. You disapprove. Your disapproval releases a cosmic shift in the void between birth and life. You ask for a hamburger. A certain small dog feasts on hamburger patties for the rest of its unnatural, eternal endurance. Your constant disapproval sends silence through everything. A contrived beast becomes omnipotent. You ask for a hamburger. I give you a hamburger your body becomes an unsettled blob of nothingness, then divides by three. The papillon barks. The universe realigns itself. You, the papillon, and the hamburger disapprove. This condemnation stops the realignment. Hades freezes over. A pig is launched is launched into the unoccupied existence between space and time with a specific hamburger. You ask for a hamburger. I give you a hamburger. It screams as you lift it to your face. You laugh maniacally as I plead with you. You devour the hamburger as it pleads for mercy. I disapprove and condemn you to an eternity in a certain void where a certain pig and its specific hamburger are located. The Universal Space-time Continuum Committee disapproves of my irrational decision. You are locked away and are fed hamburgers for the rest of your natural existence. A pickle refuses to break down during the process of digestion. You die in a freak accident. A certain pickle lives the rest of its life in a comatose state. Your soul disapproves. Down the street a child cries as a hamburger gets stuck in, and climbs back up, her esophagus. You ask again for a hamburger. I refuse to reciprocate. You demand a lawyer. I remind you harshly that this is the new world order. Lawyers no longer exist. Only papillons. Your name is written on a list of sins. Blasphemy. You ask for a hamburger. The comatose pickle vanquishes your soul from this universe. Realignment occurs. You beg for a hamburger. A certain papillon’s name is written on an obelisk in Egypt. Mumble. Peasants worship the obelisk. Your soulless corpse partakes in the festivity. Hamburgers are banned universally. The sun implodes. All planets cease to have ever existed. Mercury. Venus. Earth. Mars. Jupiter. Saturn. Uranus. Neptune. Pluto is the only mass in existence. Conveniently, you are on vacation here. Your need for hamburgers re-establishes space-time. Earth is recreated under your intergalactic rule. Hamburgers are your army. You wake up. Clowns. Clowns everywhere. Your dream rushes to meet you. You are kidnapped. You ask for a hamburger. They hand you a hotdog.

You may of course read the whole thing for yourself at the Cuil Theory website.

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