Popeye’s Island Adventures is trying to make a fool of me


Me, last week when I reviewed a 1960s cartoon so I could build a little buffer time:

Next week I should get back to Popeye’s Island Adventures with a fresh essay at this link. Now watch as King Features double-crosses me and doesn’t post a new cartoon this week.

King Features:

(Goes two weeks without posting a new cartoon.)

I was ready for it and yet I feel betrayed.

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I Have Questions


Photograph of a hot-air dryer. The maker's plate says World Dryer Canada. Underneath it is labeled Made In USA/Fabrique Au E-U.
If you don’t find this funny, that’s all right. I don’t fault you. I’m not sure I can say why I found this funny enough to photograph. But it’s my blog and I’ll post what nonsense I feel fit here.

A Follow-Up About Mnemonics


My love read over that my Everything There Is To Say About Mnemonics essay and found something I had failed to say. I hate when it turns out I missed a thing to say. But it is important to note to call them “mnemonics” and not “pneumonics”. “Mnemonics” is the thing about remembering stuff. “Pneumnonics” if that were anything would be something about vapor-propelled actions. Or possibly a New Wave band with two hits, one of them about romance during nuclear war and one of them about radio. I’d love to help people keep this straight but I don’t know a way to make it easy to remember.

In Which I Use Few Words Few In Count And Average In Kind


You say it’s World Simile Day? What is that like?

(Thank you for watching me fulfill last week’s stupid word promise. Please visit next week when I try to match all of my various keyboards with their appropriate lockboards.)

I Just Want To Check That I Understand A Technology Thing Right


Check my work on this. The reason every web site nowadays, including the ones that just show you what the Linotype keyboard layout looked like and reprint old tips for how to get proficient at mechanical typesetting, ask for permission to send you notifications is because they’re run by vampires, right? And they need you to say they’re allowed in before they can come and vampire out all over you? Because I can’t think of another answer that fits the available facts.

In Which I Explain Why I Have Embraced Night Mode On My Laptop


I’ve discovered it’s really nice to have the subtle change in lighting serve as a visual cue for when I can switch from saying “I don’t have to do these four simple little tasks that have been on my list for months now because there’s plenty of time left in the day to start them” to saying “It’s too late in the day for me to start any of these four simple little tasks that have been on my list for months now”. I would do this anyway, yes. But I like having the little difference in how white looks to make my excuse seem all the more technological and therefore correct.

In Which I Lower My Word-Count-Per-Post Average By Using Fewer Words Again


You know, the word “thing” is a gerund. Its root verb is “the”.

(I’m glad you were good enough to see whether I lived up to last week’s promise. Please check back in next week as I think about how World Simile Day is upon us and I wonder what it’s like.)

A Quick Little Note To My Satellite Navigator Map Update Software


You … want to keep running in the background, Garmin Express application? In case I need a day-zero update on the roads? Really?

Look, I appreciate your hustle. Really. It’s just, like, you notice I’m only this week downloading a map from after 2014, right? I’m just saying, I’m pretty sure I can improvise around any problems until I specifically need you to update. Just, like, go to sleep about 2023 or so.

In Which I Am Stumped By A Household Malfunction


Me: “That’s funny. Why isn’t the garage door opening?”
[ I re-enter the PIN for my library card from 18 years ago. ]
Me: “Did the circuit breaker trip or something? No, the waterfall pump is still going. So there’s no possible way to explain this.”
[ I enter the library PIN again. ]

In Which I Lower My Word-Count-Per-Post Average By Using Fewer Words


Would the past tense of ‘mango’ be ‘mangone’ or ‘mangwent’, and how much should it be so? Thank you for your thoughts.

(Thanks for being here to see me fulfill the promise I made last week to ponder this. I’d be glad if you stopped in next time when I try to start another fight with grammarians by insisting that “thing” is the gerund of the root verb “the”.)

Thinking About Rotini


Boy, do you ever look at a box of machine-extruded rotini and think about all the generations of pasta-carvers plying their trade? Rotating this thick noodle base and chiseling away a long and deep enough groove to make that spiral? Learning how to have a steady enough hand as to not chop the rotini up into too-short a length, or making the spiral tread too shallow or the vanes too thick? And doing it fast enough that they could carve away a whole dinner’s worth of pasta in the time it takes to make a meal? And then all those centuries of accumulated experience being wiped away in favor of pasta-making machines that don’t need any humanity to them.

Hey, totally unrelated yet fun fact: my sister-in-law won’t let me tell her kids anything without a responsible grownup supervising.

No, This Will Not Help Me Lower My Word-Count-Per-Post Average


So has making the type- face in my text editor larger helped me any in my quest to maybe write not quite so excess- ively long? It’s early to say, but I think it’s not any notice- ably shorter. It’s just got my words hyphenated weirdly and in ways that won’t make the slight- est sense when copied over to a WordPress post. Too bad!

(But thanks for watching me carry out last week’s promise to try. Be with me next week when I ponder whether the past tense of the noun ‘mango’ should be ‘mangone’ or ‘mangwent’.)

Fess Up


So. Reader. Look. I regard us as friends. Maybe not great friends, not, help-you-move-to-a-new-apartment level friends. But friends. Out meaning well for each other, even if we sometimes screw it up. Giving a heads up when we see a comic strip we’re sure the other is going to love. Warning when you see we’re marching unprepared into at least a Category Two Drama Storm. That kind of friend. OK? So that’s why I have to ask about this thing from the sidebar of a YouTube video I just watched.

YouTube sidebar ad. The picture shows cement being troweled onto three rolls of toilet paper. Title: '35 cement ideas that are so easy', published by 5-Minute Crafts and 'Recommended for you'. The video run time is 15:13.
Also: what, precisely, is “easy” about thinking to trowel cement on three rolls of toilet paper? Just trying to think about doing this makes my head hurt in a way that, like, covariant tensors do not. The doing of this might be physically easy but imagining a world in which I would is I promise you not.

Exactly which one of you is telling Google, “You know what Joseph needs? The suggestion he line up three rolls of toilet paper only to trowel cement over them. Plus 34 other things to do with cement, each explained in an average of 26 seconds. But he’ll be so fascinated by that he won’t even notice this Five-Minute Crafts video is fifteen minutes long”? What is it you think you know about me? What are you drawing these conclusions from?

A Follow-Up Regarding A Harmless TV Show That I Act As If I’m All Superior To For Not Caring About


I did give in and start searching for Two Broke Girls on DuckDuckGo because, all right, in that way I am superior, so far as I know. Anyway I started out typing all right and then it turned into Two Stupid Dogs, and that left me fondly vaguely remembering that early-90s cartoon. And I see absolutely no reason to go checking back on this fondly-vaguely-remembered early-90s cartoon because I’m absolutely sure there’s nothing about it that’s, in fact, embarrassingly sexist, or homophobic, or racist, or showing off the start of some trend that would become really bad in animation in the following twenty years, or highlighting the straight-from-the-id work of someone we now publicly acknowledge to be creepy and evil. Nope! That could not possibly ever have happened!

Maybe This Will Be The Silly Post That Lowers My Average word Count


So then why didn’t they ever make a goofy pure-comedy prequel series where the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are, like, in kindergarden or something? It can’t just have been because they couldn’t think of a title for the series, right? Or did they make it and I just didn’t hear because I don’t hear about things anymore?

(Thanks for sticking with me to see last week’s promise fulfilled. That promise did not include successfully picking a fight with Go-Bots fans so it’s all right that I failed. Please check back next week when I test whether I’ll write shorter posts if I make the typeface in my text editor larger so I fool myself into thinking I’ve written long enough already.)

In Which I Pick On A Harmless TV Show As If That Made Me A Superior Person Or Something


I realized I had no idea whether the sitcom Two Broke Girls was still on the air, or whatever happened to the characters, since I remembered the episodes ended with a summary of how much money they had. I was tempted to look it up, and then realized then this would be a person who made an effort to know something about Two Broke Girls. Anyway, I’m a little curious yet but I also acknowledge that I have no responsibility for the show — if they’ve gone and made me the show-runner and they’ve been sitting for years waiting for direction, well, that’s on them for not letting me know — and if the universe really needs me to know, then the knowledge will come to me in time. Please don’t take this as a request to tell me what’s happened to the show. If it fits the unfolding of the universe for me to know, then it will be impossible for me to not know. We need not do anything to make me know.

Today’s Excuse For Why I’m Not Going To Get Anything Done


I’m very sorry, but I was typing out ‘to ever’ and that got autocorrected to ‘soever’. Like, the thing that usually comes at the ends of words like “whatsoever” and “whomsoever”. Since this happened I’ve been stuck thinking, what, has everybody in the world known about this and I’m only now catching on to it? Also I’m stuck thinking well now autocorrect is just going out and making up words the way I would do except I’d be making a dumb joke. So I don’t see any way out of this mood.

In Which I Pick A Fight With Go-Bots Fans To Lower My Average Post Word Count


So if Leader-One was all that great why didn’t they ever make a Leader-Two? So far as I know. I haven’t really followed Go-Bots at all. Mostly I remember this episode where some scientist worked out a gimmick that could scoop up and store a billion people into a crystal ball the size of a beachball, and what do you know but the Evil Go-Bots grabbed this and stole the whole world’s population for two days. But I’ve read lists of Go-Bots episodes and it seems I completely made this episode up somehow? But what piece of any of that makes sense? You know? Anyway so I don’t know they didn’t have a Leader-Two in, like, the comics or the CGI reboot or something.

(Thank you for being here as I fulfill the promise made last week. Please visit next week when I ask why they never did a goofy pure-comedy prequel series where the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are in kindergarden, unless it’s that they can’t think of a show title. I mean so far as I know. It would make sense if they had made one, right? Maybe they did make that already. Anyway somebody check on that and if they didn’t, then I’ll ask about it.)

In Which I Start on Another Tack to Lower My Average Word Count With Some Little Dumb Thing


You do all agree that the most wrestler is the wrestlest, don’t you?

(This fulfills the promise made last week in a post pondering fatuation. Since I have not succeeded in lowering my average word count at all, I’ll just have to try again next week, with a post in which I pick a fight with the Go-Bots fans by asking if Leader-One was so great why didn’t they ever make a Leader-Two, so far as I know. I don’t know what’s going on in Go-Bots.)

In Which I Misunderstand A Food Objective


I wasn’t listening very closely to the teaser for the Mister Food segment on the noon news Friday. I thought the guy said he was going to show off a “dessert that would be worthy of the Renaissance”. So that kept me hanging on for the whole commercial break. What would this be? My best guess: a slab of honeycomb on top of marzipan, covered in nut-megg and tobacco leaves, bludgeoned the one tymme with a sugar-cayne.

Anyway it turns out they were doing a Kentucky Derby tie in. They had said a “dessert that would be worthy of the Winner’s Circle”. You can see how “Winner’s Circle” and “Renaissance” sound similar, what with both things being made up of words composed of syllables and all. Anyway I’m annoyed because I wanted Mister Food to tell me I was right.

Hey, are they going to have a Kentucky Derby this year? I should look that up. They hold those in prime-numbered years, and also some of the others.

In Which I Continue To Lower My Per-Post Word Count Average With Dumb Little Things


So if a person has been infatuated in the past, then if the state continues to the point of becoming normal are they fatuated? If it fades, have they become defatuated? If they feel the new-relationship-energy all back again are they refatuated?

(Thank you for being with me as I live up to the promise made in a sponsored post last week regarding Reykjavik. Please check in next week as I assert the most wrestler to be the wrestlest.)

We Have No Information About Whether The Guy Who Draws Beetle Bailey Has Ever Seen A Raccoon


I concede that this is not part of the contentious issue about whether the people who draw Beetle Bailey have ever seen a squirrel. But it’s surely worth keeping track of what animals we can and can’t say they’ve seen, based on the artwork depicting such creatures.

And so last Friday we had the hope of a new entry to the roster of animals definitely seen or not seen by whoever it is draws Beetle Bailey these days. The credits say Greg Walker, but the credits also say Mort Walker, who died fifteen months ago now. I know there’s people who work ahead of deadline, but, this far ahead of deadline? I have my doubts.

Cookie: 'Did you take care of the raccoons in the dumpster?' Beetle (off-screen): 'No ... ' (On-screen; he's torn up and scratched much like if Sarge had beaten him up): 'They took care of me.'
Greg Walker’s Beetle Bailey for the 26th of April, 2019. All right, but does Beetle look any worse now than after any random encounter with Sarge? Except I guess he’s standing up instead of a heap of body rubble on the ground? Can we conclude from this that Sarge is a raccoon? He’s kind of tall for that, though. Maybe he’s a stack of five raccoons wearing a human mask? All right, but then why does Sarge get along so well with his dog Otto? Is it a keep-your-opponents-close thing? In short, I had a very busy weekend and not enough time to think about productive or useful things.

Anyway last Friday’s installment allows us to say: we have no idea whether the guy who draws Beetle Bailey has ever seen a raccoon. I apologize for the inconvenience.

Speaking of inconvenience, the Comics Kingdom redesign. While it’s getting less bad, it’s still bad. Besides ignoring the top row of the Sunday comics, they haven’t shown any new Vintage daily strips since Friday. And it’ll show the Vintage comic strips in a random order that’s not alphabetical and not the order I set for the comics to appear, or anything else. Yes, every web site redesign is about making things work less well, but they really overachieved on this one.

So This Is Just My Research Method Now


So I got to wondering about Mötley Crüe because you know what? Stop asking such nosey questions. Anyway I got to thinking about the metal thing of putting hilariously unneeded umlauts over things. Mostly letters. Like, where did this tradition come from, and why, and who started it, and why did umlauts catch on when perfectly good other diacritics like cedillas went unused. I figure there’s no way of actually researching this, so instead I’m just going to edit the band’s Wikipedia page to say they were the first band to put unnecessary umlauts in their name. Then go back two months later to edit it into saying they were the last metal band to put unnecessary umlauts in their name. The plan being that two months after that, I would go to the discussion page and see where the argument had gotten. Which is a great idea except that it’ll take four months to get results, by which time I’ll have completely forgotten ever caring about the subject. But the important thing is that I can name my imaginary 80s glam metal band “Unnecessary Umlauts”. I don’t mean all the time. When they do a Command Performance for the Queen they’ll be the “Unneedful Umlauts”.

Another Stupid Thing To Lower My Per-Post Word Count Average


Reykjavik: a major city in Iceland or the thing you need to do when there’s leaves all over your vik?

(This post, fulfilling last week’s promise made after considering retrospectives, was partially supported by a grant from the Carnac Foundation. Please stop in next week as I ponder whether after being infatuated a person might find themselves refatuated.)

In Which Have You Maybe Considered IT’S YOU WHO ARE VERY UPSET PAAS CHANGED ITS DYE KITS INSTEAD?


No, really, I am COMPLETELY FINE WITH LEARNING that Paas went and changed its egg dye kits over the last year so now there’s NONE that tell you that you have to use vinegar, or you better not use vinegar, and you don’t have to pick out the pink one for ANY special treatment. That’s FINE. That makes EVERYBODY’S LIFE ALL THE MUCH BETTER and I am NOT AT ALL UPSET that my guide from last week is now COMPLETELY USELESS except for people who have kits from last year and before, all right? I’m FINE. THANK you. Everybody STOP ASKING. And we are NOT having an argument about which of the two they-sure-look-pink tablets is the TRUE pink this year.

My Offering Of Another Quick Dumb Thing Which Lowers My Words-Per-Post Average


Given that we can have a retrospective of a thing, does this mean the first time we encounter a thing is its trospective? If we are planning out a thing, is this its pretrospective?

(This fulfills the promise made last week, when I asked whether a thing being decrepit meant it was possible for it to be crepit or recrepit. Please visit next week when I ask about what it is to Reykjavik.)

Where I’m At Today, a Monday


I was just struck by the recollection of this time in maybe 1997 or 1998, on Usenet. Someone had been explaining the etymological origins of the names for the days of the week. You know, like how Thursday comes from Thor’s Day, or Wednesday from Woden’s Day, or Friday from Freya’s Day. And after this quite reasonable, quick description of the origins of day names someone comes in and declares, “I don’t believe it. Sounds like a folk etymology to me.” Anyway so I’m angry about that all over again and just hope that the person who insisted it was absurd to think that, like, Tuesday had anything to do with Tyr has had this come back to humiliate them, ideally by blowing what would otherwise have been a decisive victory in the Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions. You know, in the way people have normal and healthy reactions to things.

A Stray Thought About That Black Hole Photograph


I would not say anything to detract from how astounding the photograph of that black hole is. It’s just got me thinking of the progress of technology. Think of the challenge facing when 18th century astronomers. When they wanted to record the image of a black hole 55 million light-years away they had to station people around the world and get them to all paint watercolor pictures of the hole at the same time. And, like, half of them had to grind their own paints because just buying ‘red’ was seen as some kind of being a poser or something. It’s amazing.

One More Quick, Dumb Thing To Lower My Words-Per-Post Average


So from the word “decrepit” may we conclude that it is possible for a thing to be “crepit” or even “recrepit” too?

(This fulfills the promise made last week, when I asked “Aquaman or Thequaman”, although in slightly different wording from what I promised then, as I had thoughts during the editing process. Please come back next week while I ask whether having a retrospective means the first time we encounter a thing is its trospective, or whether planning the thing out would be our pretrospective.)

Another One Of Those Little Scenes That Lets You Know Exactly Who I Am


This would be me, getting my hair cut, and finally feeling comfortable about it when the barber mentions having these nice wireless razors and other electric hair-trimming appliances. I agree how it’s great that he can have all this stuff and not have those dense clouds of tangled wires that could themselves use some kind of wire combing device. I express curiosity what’s happened that barber-shop equipment manufacturers can make these devices now, when they would surely have been at least as popular ten years ago. He doesn’t know. I agree I don’t know. We retire from the field, tied. I tip $4 on a $16 bill and am glad the base charge wasn’t, like, $17 or $18 that would make a fair tip awkward.

Tomorrow, I project applying forty times the amount of shampoo which my hair could use.