Saturday, July 31, 2010


I've invented a new prank to pull on swimmers; undunking. You find someone swimming underwater and then pull their head up out of the water. It's for when you aren't allowed to dunk people.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Vampires the right way

I've always liked that mini-series.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

It's hard to pick the best wording for things like this.

By now, the sweat beads decorated his forehead so liberally that they resembled liquid wampum.

By now, the sweat beaded his brow so thickly it resembled liquid wampum.

By now, the sweat beads decorated his forehead so liberally that they resembled liquid macramé.

By now, the sweat beads decorated his forehead so liberally that they resembled that one type of lanyard I used to make tons of during craft time at camp.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Misdirections of airflow and information

I've always had a problem with being quieter then I should be. It shows up when I'm talking to a couple hundred people and just can't raise my voice enough to be heard properly.

Now, if you've ever had that problem, or been around someone with that problem, or had a reasonably well-rounded education in public communication, you have probably also heard the advice to "speak from your diaphragm". The diaphragm is the muscle underneath the rib cage, and you can project your voice farther if you clench it as you expel air, rather than contracting your rib cage. Most people tend to speak from their chest instead of their diaphragm back when they're poor uneducated souls, blind to the mysterious ways of the public speaker. If you want to check which one you use naturally, try breathing normally while resting one hand on your chest and one on your bellybutton. If the hand on the bellybutton moves, you're a diaphragm breather.

I, unlike most people, speak from my diaphragm naturally. I never had to change when I started public speaking. I'm pretty sure that's why I have a hard time speaking loudly. I'm used to speaking normally, while still using my diaphragm, so concentrating on using my diaphragm doesn't help me project louder than usual. Recently, I've realized that I actually can speak about as loud as I want if I contract my chest and lungs along with the diaphragm. Apparently, it's a combination of the two areas that really projects. Go figure.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Two Watsons

Saturday, July 10, 2010

The long awaited TAGS

So about seven months ago I was given a couple tags. It took a while, since I don't like filling out tags that much, but I did them.

A few of the answers, like what clothes I'm wearing and what song is stuck in my head, are outdated, since I filled them in months ago. 


1. Do a post about the person who awarded you, and their blog.
2. Give the award to 5 of your favorite blogs, give a reason, and leave a comment telling them they have been awarded.
3. Answer the 10 random questions.
4. Have Fun!

1. Have you ever ridden an elephant?
Coincidentally, I had the opportunity to do just that the other week, when I visited a parallel universe. Elephants had replaced the subway there. On a side note, the universe's  similarly-named sandwich shop sold "five dollar trunk-longs". 

2. Have you ever eaten squid?
Yeah, in a salad once.  It didn't taste like much. I would have preferred something that tasted more impressive, either positive or negative.  Tasteless squid is anti-climatic.

3. What is something crazy you have done with your best friend?
Hmmm, where to start... Evan and I once held a tickle/pillow fight that lasted for over an hour. We ran around and screamed jokes at each other the whole time. We've also practiced parkour in a mall after watching Sherlock Holmes for the first time. I almost killed myself.

4. Have you ever held an alligator?
Parallel universe. They're actually just as rare over there, but I happened to find myself embroiled in a mad scientists' plan to rule the world through mutant cyborg alligator handbags. In the end, I trained them all to sing Kumbaya and make smores around a campfire. Never got very high quality chocolate out of them, though. The scientist made a slip-up somewhere in the taste-sensory gene, I expect. 

5. Have you ever let a snake slither through your fingers?
Yeah, I used to play around with garter snakes when I was a little kid. 

6. What is your first and foremost dream in life?
Being a decent enough novelist to not need a real job.

7. What is your dream vacation?
Somewhere stunningly beautiful, like a tropical island or a lodge in snowy mountains. With no people. And an internet connection.

8. What is the funniest movie you have ever seen?

Either Tank Girl or Running Out of Time. Neither ones a comedy, and they were both only funny the first time... And I wouldn't recommend Tank Girl, since it's R rated. But I found them hilarious at the time. There's this one awesome scene in Tank Girl where the titular character starts a musical number. It's the only one in the movie, and there's a fourth-wall breaking interruption half-way through by the evil Nazi government, and then no reference to it again. 

9. What is your favorite song?
It changes too often to say...

10. If you could change the world in one way, what would you do?
What's that supposed to mean? Anyone can change the world in some way. Unless you mean something that is against the natural law. Maybe I would give everyone wings.


1- Have you been asked out?
Only once, as a joke. The cashier at the Green River college bookstore was flirting with me. 

Did I somehow lose number 2? It's not here... Odd.

3 - What's your middle name?

Richard. Kinda boring, in my opinion. I would have preferred Oscar or Waldo.

4 - Your current relationship status?
Single. Why are you asking? I don't date electronic surveys, if that's what you were wondering. Not to be harsh or anything.

5 - What's the first thing you do when you wake up from a nap?

Eat something. This is a habit that will haunt me once my metabolism slows down.

6 - What is your current mood?
Normal. Kinda happy. A little tired.

7 - What color shirt are you wearing?
Solid black. Last week was regionals, and so none of my siblings did the laundry. I also wore a pair of black jeans today. I looked like a stage hand.

8 - Missing something?
Yes. I am.

So are you. That question was a fragment.

9 - Current Favorite Quote?

Ah... "current". I like you, tag. You're smarter than the last tag, even if you do ask more pokey personal questions. And use strange sentence fragments. Current favorite quote: "When all else fails, ludicrously escalate the situation."

10 - If you could go back in time and change something what would be?
I would go back in time and have a little chat with my 13-year-old self to try to guide him through life. I can see a lot of problems with that, but even if it went wrong, it'd be a lot of fun to see him. 

That or I'd kill Hitler. One or the other. 

11 - If you must be an animal for one day, what would you be?

I really don't envy the intellectual breadth of any animals I know. However, since I have to be one, I'd want to be something big, like a whale. Or a dinosaur. No, I think a blue whale would be fun. Although something that can fly would be cool, too. Actually, anything different would be fun.

12 - Ever had a near death experience?


13 - Something you do a lot?
I wiggle my eyebrows. Nonstop.

14 - The song stuck in your head?

Come to the Circus, by Circus Contraptions.

15 - Least favorite household chore?
Pruning my wardrobe. I hate clothes, and I like hoarding things. I actually paid my little sister to do it.

16 - Name someone with the same birthday as you.
Arther Sullivan, of Gilbert and Sullivan fame. Had to google that one, but now I'm happy to have a connection to him. W00t! 

17 - When was the last time you cried?
Hmm. I was tearing up a bit last Saturday, since my eyes were itchy for some reason. Can't recall the last time I cried over an emotion.

18- Have you ever sung in front of a large audience?

Yeah, last year Evan and I sung a verse from Maxwell's Silver Hammer in front of 150-ish students.

19 - If you could have one super power what would it be?
The ability to travel through time and space.

20 - What's the first thing you notice about the opposite gender?
Their smile. After that, noses. I really like noses. Personality comes third.

21 - What do you usually order from Starbucks?
I've ordered a hot chocolate once, which doesn't qualify me for a 'usually'.

22 - What's your biggest secret?
Seriously? Ok, you're not as smart a tag as I thought you were. Points for effort. I have very few secrets, but I'll never tell the ones I have online.

23- What's your favorite color?


24 - Do you still watch kiddie shows or TV shows?

Define "kiddie shows". I watch TV shows with a kiddie-level of intelligence to them. Does that count?

25 - What's on your walls?

A pale blue border with yellow rubber duckies on it. We three boys have had it since we were young enough that it made sense to have such a babyish border. I don't want to get rid of it now... it's too awesome. 

26 - What are you?

I'm a figment of your imagination, here to entertain you.

27 - Do you speak any other language?

No. I'm learned Latin, ASL, and Spanish, but I don't count it as 'speaking' a language unless I'm fluent, which I'm not.

28 - What's your favorite smell?

Lemons and horseradish together.

29 - Describe your life in one word!


30 - Have you ever kissed in the rain?

Not that I recall.

31 - What are you thinking about right now?
Kissing in the rain... and that's your fault.

32 - What should you be doing?

33 - Who was the last person that made you upset/angry?
Grace and Sophia DeB. They stole my phone and then attempted to guilt-trip me into deleting a video off of it. It was mostly the guilt trip that upset me. I hate those... 

34 - How often do you talk to God?
Pretty often. I do the type of conversation that Tevya does in Fiddler on the Roof. I'm a little concerned about that, actually, since it doesn't seem very respectful. 

35 - Do you like working in the yard?
A bit. Not a whole lot. That was a random question.

36 - If you could have any last name in the world, what would you want?


37 - What is your natural hair color?

Dark brown.

38 - Do you have many friends?
Yeah, I guess.

39 - Who is your role-model?
I don't really have one, other than Jesus. 

40 - Do you like your life?


50. )I am going to tag...

Yes you are. Go, little tag! Tag other people! Tag away! Go go go! .... Go on, do it. Tag someone. ... Do it! .... Nowww do it! ........ ok, fine. I'll do it myself. Everybody who hasn't already done these two tags is hereby tagged.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Home Alone IV: An Epilogue

So my family is back. I've learned a few lessons from them.

--The daisies on the dining room table have died. I hadn't noticed. I guess they need fresh water ever so often. Or should have been moved after they kicked the farm.

--Lettuce goes bad if you freeze it and then thaw it out. I did that while trying to keep it crispy. This is interesting to know, but I'm not sure how I can apply it to my life. ... Well, actually, I suppose I could try not to put lettuce in freezers.

--The rest of the family doesn't want to have any of the sherbet if there's only a half of a bowl left.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Home Alone III

I fixed one of the can openers!

My first step was to try to find a wrench, since I realized that the bolt holding on the blade of the can opener was loose. Unfortunately, I don't know where any of the tools in our house are, and all my family members were AWOL with their cellphones turned off. After a fruitless search, I realized that I could use the other can opener as a makeshift wrench, since it had two metal handles that could be clamped together. I unscrewed the first can opener with the second, and noticed that I needed a new, thicker washer. I had as much luck finding the washers as I had with the wrenches, so I bent a paper clip into a circle and bolted it in. And now it works! Time for some sherbet to celebrate.

We'll see if this series of Home Alone posts continues. They did get a fourth movie out of the series...

Home Alone II

The family's gone for the week, I have mostly canned food to eat, and neither of the two can openers in the house is working. I thought this only happened on sit-coms.

At least I still have my sherbet.

Stay tuned, folks. We'll be covering this problem as it develops.

Home Alone

My family has gone on a camping trip for the week, leaving me at home so that I can still to go to work. This means that I have the house entirely to myself.

The largest change in my routine is that I bought myself a gallon of sherbet today. Sadly, it's melting faster than I can eat it, so I'll have to stick it in the freezer rather than eat it all right now. Such is life.

Friday, July 2, 2010


How come people will share a lollipop but not any other candy that's already been in their mouths? Taking a couple chews of used gum should be about the same as taking a lick of someone else's lollipop. Or do germs disappear if you wave them around on a stick?

My point is not, as one might believe, to point out that people shouldn't share lollipops. I just want to be able to chew used gum.