ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Interesting tidbits from the newsletter ...

Protecting Pollinators
Minimize or eliminate use of pesticides in your yard.  In addition to being an environmentalist, I'm also cheap and lazy, so I use pesticides only as a last resort -- for instance, dealing with Japanese beetles that nothing will eat, or killing poison ivy.  I don't make blanket applications of anything, only spot-spray.  Also I won't buy nursery plants pre-treated with pesticides; they're often labeled for neonicitinoids, and I tell vendors why I won't buy those.  If I'm buying flowers, it's usually for the pollinators.

How to Attract Fireflies
I already do most of these things, and we have plenty of fireflies. But this caught my eye:

In some cases, “we still debate what constitutes a species,” says Eric Lee-Mäder, pollinator program co-director for the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation. “Are two morphologically identical fireflies with different flash patterns two species—or one species with individuals speaking different languages? If we can’t answer that, how can we know how the insects are doing?”

I am now imagining some hapless alien trying to classify humans as species, based on things like color phase and communication, without being able to tell quickly and easily whether the groups are cross-fertile.  LOL

Generally, I count species as separate if they are unable or unwilling to breed with each other.  Sometimes they are biologically compatible but different cultures make their mate-selection methods mutually exclusive.  Back when most human groups were endogamous and people traveled less, a case could've been made on those grounds that humans were different species.  Of course, a look at human genetics indicates that different species don't stop them from fucking, and occasionally there are related species that are (at least sometimes) cross-fertile.  We have subsumed the DNA of at least two or three other hominids.

Now imagine the poor aliens finding that we have wiped out all the other hominids except for the bits left inside us, like the fossilized remains of parasitic twins.  Somewhere in the galaxy, someone is probably writing us as a natural-species version of the The Blob and submitting it to a horror magazine.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
A scene I saw on TV reminded me of this epic image.  And now I'm wanting to recast it with half a dozen middle-aged women cosplaying General Organa in a war room, and the caption "Somewhere there's a feminist with only two wishes left."  Surely there must be a con somewhere that this could happen.
ysabetwordsmith: Damask smiling over their shoulder (polychrome)
This poem is spillover from the July 4, 2017 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from [personal profile] kengr, [personal profile] siliconshaman, and [personal profile] conuly. Special thanks to [personal profile] kengr for help estimating the weight of the donation and to [personal profile] siliconshaman for help estimating its worth. This poem also fills the "silver and gold" square in my 7-1-16 card for the Winter Fest in July Bingo. It has been sponsored by [personal profile] mama_kestrel. It belongs to the Polychrome Heroics series.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Today I found the funniest nerd sex joke I have ever encountered. It was written on a throw pillow: "Na-ma-ste ... in bed." At first glance, it looks like a simple pun on "-ste" and "stay." However, the ending puts it into the category of "... in bed" jokes. What made it so funny that I cracked up when I heard someone reading it aloud is: namaste is Sanskrit for "the god in me sees the god in you." ... in bed. ROTFLMAO!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
(Obviously NSFW.)

Been there, had that conversation. LOL It's amusing to think, oh yeah, the artist must have been there too. Because this is totally what happens when you try to explain to pirates how not to knock up their favorite whore and where is the little man in the boat.

Meanwhile in Terramagne, Grainne Nuala is probably still throwing occasional treasure at sex ed programs. Imagine some Planned Parenthood office manager opening the dropbox and then ...

"Well, nuts! Some darn fundie must crammed this thing with brass pirate tokens."

"Uh, boss? These are heavier than brass and some of them are bent."

"Holy Mary Mother of God this is all REAL?! Who would do that?"

"Maybe a pirate who loves sex ed."


Jul. 4th, 2017 07:20 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
We watched Logorama over supper tonight.  It the most disturbing, hilariously apt depiction of America that I've seen in a long time. 
ysabetwordsmith: (Fly Free)
This is the freebie for today's fishbowl, inspired by a prompt from [personal profile] thnidu.


Once there was a rabbi
who wished to keep his money
as safe as it could be.

He had heard the tale of
Pygmalion (and got it all wrong)
so he crafted a golem of pygg and
made a slit in the cheap orange clay
that he could put the coins through.

Pyg(gy-bank)malion jingled
when he walked, but no matter
how hard the thieves and bandits tried,
they never could get it out of him,
for he was still a golem and
therefore very strong.

When at last the golem
became so full that the coins
no longer chimed inside him,
the rabbi went to smash him and
thereby retrieve his cache.

But Pyg(gy-bank)malion
pushed him down and ran away
(no longer jingling) into the night,
whereupon the rabbi sadly realized that
he had indeed made his money completely safe --

even from himself.

* * *


This is not part of the Clay of Life series proper, but it was a solitary prompt and a funny idea, so I wrote it anyway.

Pygmalion is a mythological figure who carved a statue and then fell in love with it.  The statue's name is Galatea, but because the sculptor's name is more famous, people often confuse the two.

A piggy bank is a hollow receptacle for money, traditionally made out of ceramic and shaped like a swine.  It probably got its name from a cheap clay called pygg.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Now I've been calling him that for a while, but this actually happened.  The Force really can  have a strong effect on the weak-minded!

Ladies and gentlebeings, start your memes!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Apparently, Dimwit Twerp has annoyed the lexicographers at Merriam-Webster enough for them to engage in a traditional form of retaliation also favored by linguists, journalists, and satirists: issuing corrections. :D  Sic 'im!
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
My partner Doug found this video of duelling bagpipers.  :D  Be patient, it's amusing from the beginning but takes a while to get to the really relevant part.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Do Not Read With Mouth Full

Recipe titles suggested by AI program

My observations:

1) There's a lack of computer-relevant separation; i.e. it helps to tell the computer what nouns and adjectives are, and not to duplicate words.  Learning how to do this without explicitly programming it is a useful challenge.

2) Some of these are encouragingly similar to what toddlers will suggest.


Mar. 27th, 2017 01:52 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
New game.  Do not read with mouth full.

Okay, everyone, roll for initiative ...
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Some of these are funny, others are kind of sick.  But ... It's Your Body, you can laugh if you want to.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
I was amused by this article about a wizard war between two guys who make comics.  This explains so much of the mayhem in the multiverse.  ;) 


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

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