Barnacles and vowels12.14.00: Sometimes I wonder if barnacles tell whales stories. I can just picture the barnacles hanging out near the whale's head, telling it about how it was once on a ship that sank, or of this one really cool other barnacle that it once saw but never said "hi" to. I mean, they say that barnacles just live on whales, but don't cause any harm nor good. I could easily see how the barnacles could tell the whales stories, and then just not tell us about it. I mean, come on, how else can whales be so wise?12.14.00: I've actually been thinking about this one for a LONG time... It's a big thought, so I don't know if I will get it all down in just one sitting. But, I have thought that it would be neat, and more efficient, if we were to eliminate most vowels from written language. If you think about it, you don't really need them in all instances. With just a few basic rules, we could eliminate having to add all those perfunctory "e's" and "a's" that seem so pedestrian. The basic theory is that w
Trust12.17.00: So, this is a cheapshot, but I think our society is lacking in the trust area. I was sitting in the Salem Greyhound station and as a taxi cab driver exited the Men's washroom I thought of how many restaurants in San Francisco, Boston, NYC, etc., have locked their bathrooms. As a person who appreciates a good public bathroom when I need one (let's be honest, right?), it sortof chaps me to have to buy a stupid taco just to be able to use the bathroom. What's even more distressing is to think of all the people who are on the streets. Where do they go to the bathroom? I know that I am very ignorant to the whole process of how one person can deny another a basic right, but shouldn't anyone have the unfettered ability to go to use the washroom when necessary?Alright, as good and noble as all this is, it is inevitable that the other side of the story comes out. Going to college, I have seen first-hand how people can act like the neanderthals that had come before us. In fact, the portion of the populat
Candles and car washes12.24.00: I think it would be cool if they made candles that lasted a tremendously long amount of time. Plus, it would be great if the candles had some sort of self-arresting mechanism such that you could light the candle and then go to bed, knowing that after a half- hour or so, it would shut itself off. That would be neat, and I think that more people would light candles before they went to bed if the candles did things like that.12.23.00: I bet the people who pre-wash cars in a car wash have a favorite car that they like to wash. The guy who pre-washed our car today said that his favorite was old VW Bugs. I would think that if I was washing cars like that, I would enjoy boxy minivan type vehicles. But then again, I can see the guy's point of view, because those Bugs are tiny.The car wash that we went to also had a guy who hand-dried our car. Naturally, I wondered what their favorite type of car would be, too. I'd probably have to go with size alone on this one. Then I got to thinking
Tax and wallpaper12.29.00: I've been travelling through California as of late, and a major difference between it and Oregon is that there is a sales tax in California. Coming into a state with a sales tax after living in Oregon is a drag, let me tell you. You are all of a sudden faced with the burden of carrying around all of this extra change. To a person who has given up on pennies (and just about on nickels), this is especially annoying. Every time I'm reminded of how much change I have in my pocket, I immediately think of a way to get rid of it. If I happen to be in a big city when I think this way, it is almost as inevitable that a homeless person is within sight. I'm faced with a true test of mettle: I could get rid of the change that I despise so much, or I could keep it all for myself. I usually keep it, but I am still left to consider all the other people walking around who think the same way about the change in their pockets, and I can only conclude that a fair portion of them do choose to get rid o
Birds and Vision12.30.00: Birds are cool. I think about them often. As much as I am envious of their ability to fly, I can't really say that I trust them with their, uh, somewhat irresponsible distrubution of their droppings. Well, anyway, that's just a long way of saying that when I see a bird flying overhead, I usually try to watch it fly over me. I think birds are great, don't get me wrong, but I wouldn't put it past one of them to try and hit me with last night's dinner, if you catch my drift.12.30.00: This may sound crazy, but I think that it is possible that the more intelligent you are, the better your vision is. Let us for a moment think of vision as something broader than strictly the physical ability of your eyes, and define it more abstractly as your ability to see the world around you. When you look around, the major factor is the physical ability of your eyes, but when you look at things from great distances, many times you rely on clues to try and figure out what you're looking at. If you are be
Crash tests and 90s music.We have made it through 10 episodes and our contract has been renewed for at least another 4 weeks!11.05.00: I think it would be neat if crash tests were staged to mimic a completely inelastic collision. I think that would offer a more complete picture of what could happen to you in a car crash. I mean, that is pretty much the worst case scenario for an accident, right?11.05.00: Kid Rock stinks. He exemplifies how popular "singers" these days very rarely have true singing talent. Where did people like Frank Sinatra go? In 2020 will we look back fondly upon people like Britney Spears? That seems hard to imagine, but in a world dominated by rap and otherwise fluff music, what exactly is the legacy that the 1990's music scene will leave?
Bill Gates and relationships??.??.00: This may sound far-fetched, but I bet Bill Gates has a small group of people that he pays to keep quiet. I mean, come on, everyone has skeletons in their closet - and with a man whose wealth is based at least partly on image, I can easily see how it would be to his benefit to keep them hidden. I'm not saying that he's done anything terrible in his past, but just that I wouldn't be surprised if he actually is paying people to keep quiet about things.??.??.00: I've been thinking about this for a long time, but I think that social interactions can be described in terms of Chemistry. For instance, that the bonds between two people will only form if there is enough overlap in the spheres of interest. To tell you the truth, it would make a whole lot more sense if I could draw a picture for you, but I think you can get the point.
Spelling and traffic??.??.99: I am afraid that "definitely" will get replaced with "definately." For the past six months I have seen people, some of whom I would not have expected, misspell this word. In most cases I have seen it in emails or on the internet. In some cases, people have misspelled it multiple times, which to me implies that it was more that just a simple typographical error. My fear is that the alternative spelling will become accepted, and eventually overturn the "correct" spelling. I will admit that even if it does switch over, it wouldn't be that big of a deal.??.??.98: This was probably one of the very first things that I really started to think about. One day, back in high school, I was walking through Wal-Mart and there were tons of people there. Not only were there way too many people, but they were all more or less wandering around in every direction and basically getting in my way A LOT. Maybe I was grumpy that day, but it really started to annoy me. And then I started thinking of how
Archenemies and insurance.??.??.99: I think that everyone has an archenemy, just like in Batman or Superman. I don't really mean that it has to be someone that you hate, because I bet Superman never really hated that one guy who was always throwing Kryptonite at him. Rather, more along the lines of the relationship between Jerry Seinfeld and Newman off of the Seinfeld TV show. One particular person who seems to always thwart your plans, be the thorn in your saddle, always in your hair, or otherwise makes you cringe whenever you hear their name. For me, in the second semester of my freshman year I had a class with somebody who sparked these emotions from the beginning. To be honest, they have carried out to be that perpetual enemy who is always looming the background. Of course, it's not by life's pursuit to get rid of this person, but I'll always think of them as my archenemy.11.17.00: I think insurance companies should provide medical care, since it is in their best interests to make sure that you stay alive
Stalls and projections11.??.00: There should be personal cleaning stalls in bathrooms. Even if it is nothing more than a curtain that wraps around the sink, it would add a touch of privacy that is sometimes desired, if not needed.??.??.97: This one is really old, too, but (along with archenemies) I bet that it is possible that everyone has a projection of their future self walking around. What I mean is that I think it is likely that there is someone else alive in this world who is literally a projection of what you will be like when you get older. For me, I became acquainted with one (and there probably are several, to represent different stages of your future self) way back in high school. I was playing basketball at a nearby hoop when a guy drives up and starts playing, too. I will tell you that the resemblance between us was striking. It probably isn't often that you see a stranger and immediately be taken aback by the fact that they look extremely like you, but that is what happened. I kept shooting arou
Programming the brain, hygiene breaks11.27.00: I wish we could learn specific things in our dreams. Each night we could program our minds to tackle issues or ideas that we do not fully grasp, and by the morning we will have packed in a few hours of solid thoughts on the matter. This would be great for things that you have read about recently, but do not yet fully grasp. For instance, take that really dense Philosophy article you just read but didn't understand. You could give the article a quick glance before retiring for the night, and then you'd be all set to ponder the issues while you are sleeping.07.??.00: This is going to sound really strange, but I think that both the workplace and schools could be benefitted by starting hygeine breaks. I think people should be encouraged to take time out of their day to wash up. Not only would it lead to a greater degree of hygeine but it would also strengthen morale. I can tell you that there have been many times that just splashing some water on my face has made me
The universe and washrooms11.25.00: Not that I came up with this or anything, but I think it is cool that one can view the universe as a fractal. Looking at the universe as a whole, each speck could represent a local supercluster. Viewing that as a whole, each speck of that would then be an individual galaxy. Of course, these would then also be made up of their own hierarchy of particles. So, without even getting into things very far, you can see how this definitely resembles fractalline nature.11.??.00: Okay, you can tell that I was really sick of using dormitory commodes at this point... Strictly for making the world a cleaner place, I think that washrooms might also be equipped with tollgates that will not let you out until you have washed your hands. This is logistically a bit sketchy, but for the sake of hygeine I think that there might be an advantage to it.
Gesturing and deja vu.12.02.00: I have often noticed that when I point out something on someone else's face by pointing at my own, it is only on rare occasions that a person will choose the correct side of their face. A large majority of the time, the other person will pick the mirror-image of where I was pointing (for example, I point to the right side of my face, they pick the left side of theirs). I don't really know how important it is, but I just wonder what makes some people pick the "correct" side while others choose the other. Then again, for the people who do pick the mirror-image side, I bet they would probably think that I was the one that was wrong.??.??.99: Speaking of dreams, it is my belief that bouts of deja vu are closely related to dreams. My theory is that when we sleep, we go through thousands of vignettes. You can think of it as your brain running through a whole bunch of scenarios so that you'll know what to do should you ever be in that situation. We only remember these when we wake up
Book buy-back and perception vs. reality. 12.16.00: Well, this is by no means a unique thought. In fact, it is one that virtually every college student thinks around this time of year: that book buyback is a terrible deal to us students. At the beginning of the semester we shell out big bucks to buy our books, and then they give us (at BEST) only half of that? That in itself is messed up. But then you have to figure that they aren't even passing the difference off to us with their used books. I know that the used books I buy never have more than 25% discount off the new price. So you have to figure that we're basically getting ripped off at both ends. I'm not even mentioning how over-priced the books are in the first place. It's things like this that make me want to form a student-run used book trading group. I think it would be more fair that way. I know that a lot of us have had this idea, so we should make it happen somehow...12.20.00: You know, I think that in the battle versus perception and reality, so
Book covers and lasers.Theme music: "Propaganda" by Jammin-INC.Used with permission from Podsafe Music Network.12.09.00: Why are book covers so important? What makes books worth so much more just for having that stupid piece of paper on the outside? Apparently you can't even sell a book back to a store without one. Why do we feel the need to protect the covers more than the book, when it's really what's under the cover that matters? I mean, if you follow this sort of logic, maybe it is true that we judge books by their covers.12.05.00: It would be neat, but probably logistically impossible, to have handheld lasers with enough intensity to slice through clouds. It would be so cool to just be able to point the laser up into the sky and be able to draw things in the clouds with them. Of course, I would have to be the only one who had one, or else all you guys would cut up the clouds before I got a chance to.