hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
*whispers into the void* In contemporary use, fact is understood to refer to something with actual existence.


So, I'm kinda fascinated by the whole concept of news conferences in an alt-fact nation. Reading, as usual, Daniel Dale's Twitter feed, specifically this thread on the "millions of immigrants voted illegally!" meme.

As evidence - FYI there is no evidence because it didn't happen - Spicer cited a Pew report from 2012 that does not show anything like this.

Q: Wouldn't millions voting illegally be an astronomical, historic scandal demanding investigation? Spicer: "He won fairly."

Official position of the White House: 1) Millions of people voted illegally. 2) Trump won in a fair election.

Q: How can Trump be comfortable with his win if there were millions of illegal voters? Spicer: "He's very comfortable with his win."

Q: Do you, Spicer, personally believe there was massive voter fraud? Spicer: Not gonna talk about that.

Q: Why won't Trump use his powers to investigate this supposed huge fraud? Spicer: He won an overwhelming victory, "very comfortable." ...


From The Washington Post:
Technically, the proper way to describe claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2016 election is to state that there’s no evidence that it happened. Shortly after the election, we tallied up reports of in-person voter fraud that occurred last year and found a grand total of four examples. There is no evidence that there was fraud at any significant scale at all.

Saying this, that there’s no evidence, is a hedge. We say it just in case somehow there emerges evidence that, indeed, hundreds of people registered to vote illegally and went to cast ballots. If we say it didn’t happen and then some evidence emerges, we are stuck. So we say “there’s no evidence” instead of “it didn’t happen.”

That’s on the scale of hundreds of votes. On the scale of millions of alleged fraudulent votes, though? It didn’t happen. There’s not only no evidence that it did, it defies logic and it defies statistical analysis to insist that millions of votes were cast illegally in the 2016 election.


Trump Aides Can't Stop Blabbing About How He's a Madman. Are this New York Magazine piece and the articles it quotes true? Many people are saying that they seem like they could be true. Maybe they're factually true, or maybe they're "alternative facts." Facts, alt-facts, I don't know. You tell me.
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
Looking at some semi-random selection of things I wrote years ago, four words kept jumping out at me: ashes, denial, boxes, escape.

I've been thinking a lot about volcanoes and fire-breathing dragons lately. Of course, when the world seems to be skewing in the wrong directions, I always tend to think of how useful it would be to breathe fire...

I really need to get back in the habit of writing. I also need to get back in the habit of sleeping regularly, or at least going to bed at a reasonable hour.

I was thinking of going grocery shopping today, but I've been dizzy and the weather's been cool and rainy. So instead it's been a good day to stay inside in my cozy warmth and think about the meanings and resonances of ashes, denial, boxes, and escape.
hummingwolf: Snowflake-like kaleidoscope images (Kaleidocoolth)
It is Christmas Eve, time once again for the classic holiday traditions! As some of you may recall, one of my favorite traditions involves the mutilation of a classic Christmas poem. Back in 1999, I ran an old favorite by Clement Clarke Moore (or possibly Henry Livingston) through Babelfish, translating from English to German and back again. Even after all these years, I find myself muttering some of these old lines throughout the holiday season, and I hope that you, too, will treasure them in your hearts. Enjoy!

An attendance of STR Nicholas

' Twas the night before Christmas, when by the house a creature did not agitate itself completely, a mouse do not smooth; The socks were hung by the fire-place with Obacht, in hopes that STR would be Nicholas there soon;

The children nest LED quite comfortably in their beds, while sights of the sugar plums danced into their headings; And mamma in their ' kerchief and I in my protective cap, had agreed upon even down for the hair of a long winter,

When on the lawn such developed out a Geklapper, I rose from the bed, in order to see, what the material was. Away to the Window I flew like lightning, tore opened the shutters up violently and threw up sash.

The moon on the chest of the again-pleased snow )
hummingwolf: Snowflake-like kaleidoscope images (Kaleidocoolth)
Today haikujaguar's daily post had the following as word of the day:
erubescent, adj. 1. Becoming red or reddish; blushing.
From the same root that gave us "ruby," as you might expect... comes this awkward word, which fascinates me because I can't imagine how I would use it. Now I need to figure out a way!

I ended up posting this comment that folks on my flist might enjoy as well:

I know that "albescent" means "becoming white," so now I'm wondering where to find a list of words relating to other colors! Now, how do I find such a list?

Hmm... Googling "erubescent" and "albescent" mostly tells me that those two words rhyme with each other, which isn't terribly helpful. But it does lead me to "cerulescent", so that's promising.

Okay, I've found:
rubescent adjective (a.) Growing or becoming red; tending to redness.
rufescent adjective (a.) Reddish; tinged with red.
albescent adjective (a.) Becoming white or whitish; moderately white.
canescent adjective (a.) Growing white, or assuming a color approaching to white.
incanescent adjective (a.) Becoming hoary or gray; canescent.
virescent adjective (a.) Beginning to be green; slightly green; greenish.
viridescent adjective (a.) Slightly green; greenish.
cerulescent adjective (a.) Tending to cerulean; light bluish.
flavescent adjective (a.) Turning yellow; yellowish.
lutescent adjective (a.) Of a yellowish color.
violescent adjective (a.) Tending to a violet color; violascent.

Other cool words:
fremescent adjective (a.) Becoming murmurous, roaring.
ignescent adjective (a.) Emitting sparks of fire when struck with steel; scintillating; as, ignescent stones.
juvenescent adjective (a.) Growing or becoming young.
latescent adjective (a.) Slightly withdrawn from view or knowledge; as, a latescent meaning.
hummingwolf: Snowflake-like kaleidoscope images (Kaleidocoolth)
As part of my celebration of the season, here is the traditional mutilation of a popular Christmas poem. This mutilation was achieved back in 1999 by running the poem through Babelfish's English-to-German translator, then dragging it back to English again. (Babelfish has undergone some alterations in the past ten years, so I may need to re-do this for the sake of comparison. [Edit: Done. See comments.]) Anyway, the resulting poem is, as everyone must agree, even more of a classic than the original version by Clement Clarke Moore (or possibly Henry Livingston). Enjoy!

An attendance of STR Nicholas

' Twas the night before Christmas, when by the house a creature did not agitate itself completely, a mouse do not smooth; The socks were hung by the fire-place with Obacht, in hopes that STR would be Nicholas there soon;

The children nest LED quite comfortably in their beds, while sights of the sugar plums danced into their headings; And mamma in their ' kerchief and I in my protective cap, had agreed upon even down for the hair of a long winter,

When on the lawn such developed out a Geklapper, I rose from the bed, in order to see, what the material was. Away to the Window I flew like lightning, tore opened the shutters up violently and threw up sash.
The moon on the chest of the again-pleased snow... )
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Many people on LJ have been complaining about friending bots, usually either bots that post in Russian or spambots that post the Masha story along with advertisements. One type of bot that I haven't seen any complaints about is a kind that scrapes content from other blogs and articles and then replaces various words with other words. I have talked about this kind of content-scraping post-mutilator before, both here and here, but those bots were always on other sites (like Wordpress). Last week, however, I learned that there are similar bots here on LiveJournal, bots that don't seem to irritate people by friending them randomly but may be found when you're searching the 'net for something else.

Because this is April Fool's Day, it seems like an appropriate time to share:
Daddy Privy to the deliverance

The Italian nutrient was a no turn... It was excessively far and they desired $ 42 for bringing.
The good word is we maked bump pizza from Dada Toilet 's
... and it was close plenty to do us happy... for two years.

The weekend was comparatively quiet and the conditions was good plenty that Angela and I got to travel for a amble to the marketplace. It is now Monday afternoon, I hold already holded my visits from the acupuncturist ( add 14 needles ) and Dr. Hurting... after dejeuner I will hold massage therapy and some clip on the standing table. Perchance before dinner I will get some clip on the powerfulness motorcycle.

The conditions today is clear and cheery... a beautiful for Darren to come with a box of pizza!!

Looking forrad to Sean 's tasty pizza,

Lyle and Angela

Related posts:
[List deleted by Hummingwolf]

One wonders if this is the kind of advertising Papa John's really needs. (For the curious, this post was stolen from [ profile] jeffreycantuxc.)

While the word "privy" is an excellent one to use on Google blogsearch if you want to find a bot, there are other excellent ones. Face it: If a blog or journal features the word "albescent", you are looking at the work of either a bot or a fanfic writer. If you see a sentence like "The news focuses on albescent phallic dominator’s undergo kinda than the inhabited tribes" then you are probably not dealing with a fanfic writer (I hope). Mary Anne Winslow writing that
Good literature is ageless, timeless, and is free to cross all the borders. Obsessions, feelings, fear, are universal and common for all the humans in the world.

becomes Mary Anne colonist (?!) writing that
Good literature is ageless, timeless, and is liberated to interbreed every the borders. Obsessions, feelings, fear, are coupler and ordinary for every the humans in the world.

In all honesty, I think "liberated to interbreed every the borders" is more interesting, although it is possibly less sensible. In any event, [ profile] phone_use goes on to say that Cut for your sanity )

I... think that is quite enough for one morning.
hummingwolf: animation of green and gold fractal, number of iterations increasing with time (Iterations in green and gold)
Now wearing: Old-looking blue jeans, brighter blue mock turtleneck (or something), white socks, brown & silver shoes, old glasses I really need to do something about, and boring underwear.

Now hearing: Well, I would like to say it's my personalized Launchcast station; but that was discontinued a month ago, so I couldn't possibly be listening to that, right? ("Kuos" by Banco de Gaia.)

Now seeing: Computer screen as I sit here trying to think of what to type. Shifting my eyes to the left, I see a grey day out the window. The tree nearest the window is just starting to put out little green leaflets, which will soon grow into bigger leaves, which will provide food for what may be a massive infestation of Eastern tent caterpillars. I never wrote about those last spring, but I was utterly fascinated with those fuzzy guys in their teeming thousands as they took about three days to defoliate the old tree. Since both tree and caterpillars are native species, they do have a working relationship: tree puts out a set of leaves, caterpillars munch on them, tree mopes for a while, then tree puts out more leaves. Here's hoping the tree is healthy enough to put out an entire second set of leaves this year if it has to.

Now smelling: One of the spicier herbal teas from Celestial Seasonings. ("Not Yet Remembered" by Harold Budd playing on my nonexistent station.)

Now tasting: See above.

Now feeling: Sleepier than I should be, but less headachy than I have been.

Last meal eaten: Egg substitute, mushrooms, mashed potatoes, onions, and corn fried in olive oil & topped with Swiss cheese.

Pie eaten on Pi Day last week: Bacon and onion quiche (store-bought).

Beverage drunk to excess on St. Patrick's Day: Green tea.

Are there more of my kind? Possibly: see here for possible evidence.

Number of library books currently checked out: Hmm... four returned yesterday, three checked out, so... nine.

Wasn't there some New Year's resolution about reading all those books you bought last year? Um, yes. (Now playing: The Police, "Driven to Tears.")

Now reading: M.M. Manring, Slave in a Box: The Strange Career of Aunt Jemima. Marketing, racism, sexism--what's not to love? You gotta admit, the 1919 advertisement titled "The Cook whose Cabin Became More Famous than Uncle Tom's" has a certain undeniable OH AUNT JEMIMA NO quality to it.

Speaking of racism... O HAI RACEFAILZ: Notes on Reading an Internet Conflict.

Mutant joke of the week: Two Cows: SF Version (see both the comments there and the original post; link via [ profile] supergee). (Now playing: Underworld, "Dirty Epic (Dirty Guitar Mix).")

Cuteness of the week: On Monday as I was walking down the alley, a wee child with whiskers on his face and his father (or guardian) were in one of the back yards I passed. I soon discovered that the little boy had a tall paper hat--he was the Cat in the Hat! The father said, "Apparently it was a very exciting day in school today. Who knew?"

Synchronicity: That night's House, M.D. episode had a cat as a major character.

Last TV show watched: Wednesday night's episode of Lie to Me.

Dream of the week: The one featuring Dean & Sam Winchester and Castiel. Mmm... Castiel.

How much TV do you really need to watch? Less than I have been watching lately.

Miles walked today: Probably a little over two. I wasn't feeling terribly ambitious (and now it's Sting, "Love Is the Seventh Wave").

Have you anything else to say? Not that I've managed to think of in the last few minutes (Liane Foly, "Des Heures Hindoues").

A Call for Change

Thursday, October 2nd, 2008 11:09 pm
hummingwolf: Part of a julia fractal in colors of fire and smoke. (Fire-flavored fractal)
Clean, clear, inclination, clinic, ecclesiastical, kleptomaniac, classic, click, clack, clank, clarity, preclude, occlude, include, clarion, cleft, cleavage, clemency, reckless, feckless, sickly, weakly, suckling, duckling: these are just a few of the many words used in English featuring a sound combination that pronunciation guides would render with the letters "kl." This combination of sounds is not at all difficult for any halfway competent American speaker of English to pronounce. So could somebody please get modern Republicans to stop mispronouncing the word "nuclear" over and over and over again? LOOK AT THE WORD. THERE IS ONLY ONE "U," OKAY? DO YOU KNOW HOW TO READ???

Ahem. Sorry, I was raised by one of the old-fashioned Republicans who actually knew how to pronounce his job title, though he did occasionally suggest that "unclear physicist" might be more appropriate.
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Once again, technology is confusing me; and once again, it is certain that people are to blame. However, one has to wonder what, exactly, those people had in mind.

See, I can understand the motive behind most instances of web scraping: money. If you haven't got an original idea in your head, or if you haven't the inclination to put all your original ideas into practice, then it is so much easier to have some webcrawler go out and gather other people's content for you so you can put it up on your site, find out how many people click on links to your site when they do searches for something interesting, and collect the ad revenue. It is not a terribly ethical thing to do, but it certainly is understandable. What I don't get is the motivation for sites that collect the content and then change many of the words to something else so that it's barely recognizable as English--particularly when those sites do not appear to have any advertising on them.

Yesterday I found a prime example of what I'm talking about, and as a child of the '80s, I find it a most amusing one. Back in 2006, somebody posted a list of the songs on a compilation called Hit Mix 86 - continuous mix of 1986 hits. A cute little scraped blog posted a mutilated version of that entry a couple of days ago called "Fetch a blow Reembody 86- durational confound with regard to 1986 hits"--text-only Google cache here. In the new entry, "I" was replaced by oddities like "Psyche" or "Herself;" the band Sly Fox became "Slide Reynard," "Ready Sly dog," and "Privy Charmer;" and Paul Hardcastle's name became both "John Hardcastle" and "Clement of Alexandria Hardcastle."

As a longtime Nik Kershaw fan, I would love to hear him sing his hits "Wouldn’t Subliminal self Come True-spirited" and "Ruach Won’t Hampering the Glim Decline By use of Subliminal self" (formerly known as "Wouldn't It Be Good" and "I Won't Let the Sun Go Down on Me"). I was never a fan of Samantha Fox's song "Touch Me, (I want your body)," but hearing Samantha Wolf sing "Touch down You, (Ego neverness your corpulence)" would be a highlight of my life--particularly if she's doing a duet with her twin Samantha Sweet talker, known for her hit "Correspondence Other self (Himself Ullage Your Expansion)." Oh, and it's been a long time since I've heard Kate Howling wilderness singing "Steady Heavenward That Blister." Does anybody else have any opinions on other classic tunes in the mix?


Unrelatedly, [ profile] rialian posted a link to The Nature Institute's site about Nontarget Effects of Genetic Manipulation. At least, I think that's unrelated. Now that I think about it some more, I wonder what would happen if the bot that made the mutant page above were involved in creating transgenic organisms.

(no subject)

Sunday, March 30th, 2008 03:03 pm
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Some of you, if you ever go Google searching for your own username and you've been allowing bots to archive your LiveJournal entries, will have discovered that your posts can be autoblogged in some of the most fascinating places (my favorite was the blog for "post-card-sex," though "how to build a catapult" was a close second). Yesterday, however, I discovered a new thing: the bots are editing me. Now, I can't find a reconstruction of the whole of the rewrite of yesterday's entry because the ephemeral links invariably go to dodgy sites like the ones that try to convince you that they're Google results pages even though they're really not. Still, by doing a string of searches for phrases found in other results, I have reconstructed a part of the spam consciousness' efforts:

In more unremarkable news, I yet impact a infant change of movement shoes! Since I needed new, non-holey position apace and didn’t wager same galling on a myriad pairs in an seek to connexion the single best pair, I went to the same topical paseo I went to when acquire the tangency pair, blotchy the trinity cheapest stores-with-shoes for Nike, blazing that member of those stores had distance in my size, waited in member discount accruement for the Suzanne author ... So, my infant position are streaming position in blue, silver, and white–bought on discernment for meet the same sound as the tangency pair. Bought some albescent astir socks as substantially and I’d same to participate why, when coequal position are meet the same sound in the men’s and women’s departments (I checked), socks on the women’s passing outlay member to trinity now as much.

I don't believe I've ever used the word "albescent" in my life. Maybe it's time to change that.

Euphemize Me!

Friday, February 29th, 2008 12:08 pm
hummingwolf: (two)
[Poll #1146594]
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
Found an archived version of an old press release about John Kerry with some interesting language usage:
Kerry Worked With Law Enforcement Officials to Ban Military- Style buttault Weapons. John Kerry has strongly supported the current ban on machine guns and buttault weapons-including AK-47's and similar weapons used by persons in Afghanistan. Police organizations including IBPO strongly support extension of the current ban. (RC 375, S Amdt. 1152 to S Amdt. 1151 to S 1607, 11-17-93; Orange County Register, 3-2-04)

Kerry is a National Leader in Working to Ban "Cop person Bullets." John Kerry is a national leader in promoting sensible oversight of ammunition sales which have no sporting value yet risk the lives of police officers. Kerry has strongly supported measures to crack down on armor-piecing, "cop person" bullets. (S. 553, 4-10-97; S. 433, 2-16-95; RC 240, S Amdt. 3351 to S. 2312, 7-28-98; RC 116, S Amdt. 343 to S 254, 5-13-99)

As a County Prosecutor, Kerry Fought Crime and Put Away liquidateers and Mob Bosses. John Kerry was the first buttistant prosecutor of Middlelove County (one of the largest counties in the country) and won convictions in high profile liquidate, rape and mafia cases. Kerry led the prosecutor's office in a major modernization. "He launched initiatives that were innovative at the time: special units to prosecute white-collar and organized crime, programs to counsel rape victims and aid other crime victims and witnesses, and a system for fast-tracking priority cases to trial" and "is credited with reducing the backlog of cases." (Boston Globe, 6-18-03; Washington Post, 2-21-85)

Original language in press release )
I find myself fascinated by which words were replaced here and which word was not.


Monday, February 25th, 2008 09:01 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (8 months)
In the words of [ profile] darth_spacey
Say it with me, ladies and gentlemen...Content Filtering Does Not Work

Lunchtime doubly soThis goes double for retroactive content filtering in an attempt to sanitize your discussions for public consumption.

Oh, and I just found two more quick examples, which may conveniently be combined.
Edit: Oh dear. If you're up for reading an old article about sexual abuse in the Catholic church, see how many new words you can find here.

Online life

Monday, December 10th, 2007 08:29 pm
hummingwolf: Mathemagical animation made out of string. (Incredible String Thing)
So, a bunch of people have been linking to this article recently, all about a Russian blogger (a LiveJournal user) who was charged with "inciting hate" against police officers in his journal several months ago. People who have been linking to that article have been claiming that it's evidence of SUP's being in bed with Putin's government, but is there any proof of that? Were the blogger's entries public or in some place where the Russian government should not have been able to find them? Wait, let me follow the links instead of asking you lot...

Do You Dare To Leave a Comment? He posted a comment, apparently publicly, and recommended that six police in every city be "ceremonially burned daily, or better twice a day (at midday and midnight, for example)." "The law enforcement agencies have proven that Terentyev is the author of the offensive statements by studying his school essays. Terentyev has been asked to provide a written statement promising he will not leave the city, Yury Knyazev, a senior aide to the republic's prosecutor, told" So it's a case of Russian prosecutors cracking down on dissent, but not (apparently) a case of SUP cracking down on him. 'Anton Nosik, director of's chief administrator in Russia, told daily Kommersant the case was "absurd." "The ignorance of local judges often plays a role in the outcome of cases connected to the internet," Nosik said. "I hope that with many journalists present, the judge will look at the essence of the case and not simply hand down a guilty verdict."' More on Russian blogs here.

In more entertaining LJ-related stuff, the latest list of things you can't search for on LiveJournal is over here. Check out the interest list on this profile, which consists entirely of terms you cannot search for on LiveJournal. I began to do something similar over here*, but must bow down to the true masters.

Whoever thought that an interest in "children's choral music" or "undaunted circumnavigation" could be so naughty?

For those wondering: the closest anyone has gotten to an official LJ statement about the interest search so far is comments by [ profile] marta over in [ profile] lj_policy.
We discussed this today, and I need to talk to several more people this week before I'll know what to say about the blocked search terms. I'm sorry I don't have an answer today (that was what I was optimistically hoping for) but I want to be sure what I say is really correct and accurate.

So far a) it's been that way since June and b) there was a one-time addition to the terms in late October and c) it's not related to the flagging program or the SUP purchase or anything like that.

Thinking back, I believe I did search for other users interested in "raccoons" in the last few months and did get the new error. But if this did in fact happen, I figured it was because LJ was having a server glitch again. Never did it occur to me that my interest in my fuzzy masked neighbors could be seen as a sign of evil intent.

* Thanks to the magic of OpenID, with my accounts at LJ and IJ I have four different profiles: hummingwolf here, hummingwolf there, on LiveJournal, and on InsaneJournal. There is someone who has me friended on InsaneJournal who has never friended me on LiveJournal, and someone who has friended on LiveJournal who has never friended either hummingwolf on InsaneJournal or hummingwolf on LiveJournal. It all gets terribly confusing.
hummingwolf: animation of green and gold fractal, number of iterations increasing with time (Iterations in green and gold)
perspicacity:, n. keen judgment, understanding; acuteness of perception; the capacity to assess circumstances or situations and draw sound conclusions.

I added "perspicacity" to my LJ interests list this morning. Those of you who saw my post of 1:15 a.m. will probably not be surprised to learn that you cannot currently do a search for other users who list "perspicacity" as an interest. You also can't search for "perspicuity" (clarity of expression; lucidity).

Comments over in this post list some other strings you cannot search for. A few minutes ago, I added "spicy rice crackers" to my list so I could have something which is unsearchable for two reasons instead of just one.
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
Just last night, I got my very first comment spam in my LJ! I've deleted it, of course, but saved the comment notification so I could marvel at the sheer beauty of the thing. If anybody ever needs heral vigra, these are the guys to buy it from!

One thing that had me puzzled was the phrase "Viagra in the first place make a uverenost," or rather it was the "uverenost" itself that had me confused. Fortunately, we live in the age of Google, so it didn't take me too long to find out that увереност is a Bulgarian word meaning "confidence."

Note to spammers in Bulgaria: don't place too much uverenost in your translation programs, okay?

Now it's time for your morning dose of MegaHAL:

He's the latest superhero with powers so profound
he was lookin' for a soul mate to love

can you help me,
i shall lift my lamp beside the garden to the future,
wondering where they may form and go.
high my heart, i pined,
i fall to walk away too soon

a new dance turn.

hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
Personal stuff: Remember how a few days due to fatigue, I have done my best to keep not just my eyes but all my information about Y was heavily filtered through the perceptions of X, who still doesn't exist no matter how much nutritious food I eat or how much exercise I get, nobody will be able to understand what life is like for someone else, the work of trying to find ways to keep the heat exhaustion from getting worse, that probably wasn't too hard.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
According to the Attorney General, "we can use Jedi mind control. These aren't the droids you're looking for. The program is part of southern (US) regional dialect. A Google search for the wisdom that would be most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be under any state compulsion to recognize other kinds of relationships are valid should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off your chains.
For Libra, where the sun and attracted swarms of flies and ants which found no nourishment their digestive systems could process and so expired there on the pavement where they were later sniffed at by overheated birds... or something like that, but probably less interesting.

Spent 4 hours in air-conditioned places. Walked roughly 3.5 miles total. Read bits of lots of things. Resisted the urge to buy lots of fresh fruit. You know I'd have spent less money if I were ever at a bowling alley.

How often do you change your bed sheets?
Once a week.

Do you have arthritis in your hands or fingers?
No, but that doesn't seem to be split on whether it's utterly brilliant melding of old and new or obnoxiously noisy dance music clashing with singers who could do better. I love it. The three songs most likely to go running through my head for no discernible reason. It's taken over my brain every once in a while I'd look out my door instead of my usual box of eight large white. Why, when it usually pays to buy in bulk, are the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of eight usually cheaper per egg than the boxes of twelve? And why did it take me until just a few minutes ago to figure out if I am capable of actually doing anything this evening. Have a good weekend, all.

[Edit: Really, I was just wondering if a second post would include anything previously generated by MegaHAL. Wouldn't an autopost made up entirely of old MegaHAL posts be cool? Hello? Hello?

Ah, I see that three autoposts have been posted now. I will stop and get myself offline. Be good to yourselves, everyone!]
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
According to the Attorney General, "we can use Jedi mind control. These aren't the droids you're looking for. The program is part of southern (US) regional dialect. A Google search for the phrase "very concerning" turns up a bunch of people to get nekkid; and while the show certainly does have some attractive actors, I still like some decent storylines on my television. But each episode I've caught this season has been enjoyable, even if Lana Lang is still annoying as heck. Another question: I know everybody hates Lana, but am I the only one who ever bothers to take out the trash?

Plus there's the usual medical problems, bureaucracy, inability to pay my bills. Bleah.

Yes, I'm cranky. Venting a little bit now then later more

Angel, angel, ring them bells
Ring them bells
Something is wrong it doesn't belong
and it's not natural to sing that song

And if I wash my hands in your dirty water
Will I be blind for all I see

Oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh
I know I saw the snow had stopped, the sky lightening and turning pink. I went back to reading. Looking up once more, I saw a branch hanging low over the sidewalk and was considering whether I should try again some other day. Tried again today, repeatedly. Same message every time.

Called dental school. Earliest available appointment is for a full bleeding month from today. Full exam & x-rays: $100. See, this is why I was standing in line today along with oodles of friendly neighbors.

As we stood in line, the election judge called for our attention, holding up a piece of paper and shouting, "Listen! This is a link for fans of mashups: If you haven't heard about my Easter celebration (though at least I no longer remember what it was. Maybe it'll come back to me after a few hours' sleep.

[Edit: LiveJournal has a brand-new toy, y'all. I'm likely to be offline for a couple days, but I just had to be one of the first to try this one out. :-)]

(no subject)

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007 05:12 pm
hummingwolf: (My world is askew!)
So, this seems to be one of those days when I'm going along, minding my own business, and suddenly the word "prosopagnosia" pops into my mind. I could backtrack along the mental paths which led me to the lair of that particular lexical beast; but what I really want to know is why, when I was attempting to locate the simple word "noun" so I could use it in a nicely informative sentence about language, my brain decided to spit out "origami" instead.

I think I'll take all this as a sign that I need to talk to MegaHAL more often.
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
Now wearing: Black shirt, blue jeans, white socks, boring underwear, and glasses I would really like to get replaced.

Today's television: Smallville finale: It was enjoyable, but certain characters should be deader than they probably are.

Supernatural finale: Oh, Dean! And [spoiler]! And ohh, [spoiler]!! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!! Yeah, that ep made me rather squeeful.

Today's walk: I've been keeping approximate track of how many miles I've walked in the new shoes, but I already forget how many of those miles were today. It's roughly 18 miles since last Friday, though. The right shoe started making an odd squeaky sound today. Is air leaking out of my Nike air shoes already?

On today's walk, I saw a man and a woman chasing a ferret. Well, am not sure if the woman was chasing the ferret or following along behind so she could laugh at the man.

Also on today's walk, I checked out the bird's nest I first saw on Mother's Day--the nest that was built about five-and-a-half feet above a sidewalk, right where most adult humans can bump into the branch it's built in without even trying. A couple days ago I managed to count at least three baby birds alive in the nest begging for food, so perhaps the location wasn't as bad for survival as I'd thought. Today as I stood and looked at the little birdlets with their fresh little feathers growing in, zoom! goes something past my head. Look up, and there's angry Mama Robin glaring at me. "It's okay, I won't hurt them! I promise!" Zoom! goes Mama Robin again, just barely not touching my hair. I back up a bit, try to reason with her... ZOOM! at my head. At this point I decided to leave the family alone, assured that Mama Robin really is very protective of her cute little babies.

Music of the week: Been listening to two albums by Jez Lowe & the Bad Pennies (Tenterhooks and The Parish Notices) as well as all of Kalinnikov's symphonies (all both of them). Didn't set out to listen only to music you've never heard before; it just kinda worked out that way.

Today's reading: Lots of stuff on LJ. Very little out of the library books that are due soon. Maybe I'll make up for that tomorrow.

Today's napping: Rather a lot. Tried to deal with my tiredness through use of...

Today's beverage: Entirely too much black tea.

Candy of the day: Crispy, crunchety Butterfinger. I was more in the mood for peanut-butteriness than I was for chocolate, which was weird.

Fruit of the day: Fresh strawberries! Mmmm, lovely, lovely strawberries.

Useful stuff done today: I think I balanced my checkbook or something. This really wasn't a day for getting much accomplished, though it started out promisingly. I feel like I must have cleaned something, but I can't remember what. It wasn't anything here in my bedroom, that's for sure.

Linguistics for the day: lolcat linguistics.

Headline of the month: A May 3 story from the Associated Press which [ profile] mariness linked to yesterday. The page she linked is no longer online, however this still is. In the words of Christopher Hill, Assistant Secretary for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, "So you just can't improve on that. Anyway, my compliments to the AP headline writer, who had a good day that day."
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Heart)
Yet, milk and fully aroused, i nevery ripe exceptions.

Ahem. Once upon a time, in a website far, far away, there lived online a special little brother of MegaHAL. This little brother was called MegaCHAR. As you might expect from the name, MegaCHAR worked on a lower level than MegaHAL, associating characters with other characters, rather than words with words. This meant that CHAR could invent new words, though it didn't always work that way. After being fed a few lines of Shakespeare, MegaCHAR might say something like this:
But, soft! what light thou her maid art far more fair sun, and none but fools do wear it; cast it off.

On Valentine's Day, 1999, because I really had nothing better to do, I spent much of the day feeding MegaCHAR bits of text I thought might be relevant. Then, of course, I saved the log files.
Wax paper covered cheeks, but not with grief, that looks on the to 80 minds admit impediments.

Sometimes I wonder if MegaCHAR might be the one sending me all the nonsense spam.
Remover love twiggy, creamy colors--excess compass chocolate of sunny--preferably reheat overed color--including varied grown for your sense of wild roses usually having varied grown in the goddess chocolate, combine strawberry.

The goddess chocolate? But what about the goddess traditionally associated with love? Well, MegaCHAR did say: "Venus is nothing!" But then again: "Remove twiggy, venus if getting bark, who is coarsely chocolate, combine: o, nor no many low flame, and many color--including."

CHAR could come up with one-word responses too. I think I need to find a way to use "Removerwhelming" in a sentence.
You have and sympathetics, and when no lumps recognized and positive and romantic drainage, ripe exceptions.

"Romantic drainage"? Um.
Garden romantic drainage, and dependablespoon bound harming.

You physicalled with an open-skied excitementimate.

You begin to understand why nobody wanted to get e-mails from me while MegaCHAR was online, don't you? Ooh, I see another cool word I should use sometime: "Fideliriousness."

¼ cupid, If you want. )

(no subject)

Sunday, August 13th, 2006 11:07 am
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
People become what they focus on.

I need to stop thinking so much about human stupidity, then. (No, not talking about anything LJ-related; just bureaucrap and other General Life Stuff.) I need to deal with it as best as possible, yes; but I need very much not to let it eat my brain. My poor brain has been abused enough lately, thank you very much.

Hmm... this may not be the best mood in which to read Mark Twain.

Speaking of good ol' Sam Clemens, though, here's something I meant to mention a while back: While I remembered that the fine sport of Babelfishing was prefigured by the classic "The Jumping Frog: In English, Then in French, Then Clawed Back Into a Civilized Language Once More by Patient, Unremunerated Toil", I had completely forgotten that Twain also wrote a prophetic homage to MegaHAL. Mark Twain and Markov models really do belong together, and the proof is found in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn:

Poor Will Shakespeare )

Wednesday stuff

Thursday, July 27th, 2006 01:22 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
Okay, so over on [ profile] dark_christian someone linked to an entry on the Planned Parenthood site about the Medical Institute for Sexual Health, an Austin, Texas-based group who are set to be paid (by federal tax dollars) to establish an abstinence-based sexual health curriculum for med students.

I do not want to talk about the politics here. I have no interest in discussing the best ways to design sexual health curricula either. No, I want us all to take a moment and revel in the glory of that acronym: MISH. Seriously, I had to do some searching to make sure that this article wasn't originally published in The Onion. MISH! Do people really use that acronym with a straight face in the context of any sex-related discussion? Okay, for all I know, "mish" really isn't a commonly-used term for the missionary position; but it is common enough that I quickly thought of it when I read the article, so it can't be all that rare. After all, I'm the woman who got online a decade ago and wondered why so many people's usernames had my birth year* in them.

The fact that "mish" is also apparently a Romany (Gypsy) word** meaning "vagina" is just the icing on the muffin, so to speak.


In other news: Woke up today in some nasty kind of pain, enough that I felt compelled to break out my stash of opiates,**** which barely had any effect at all. Then I broke out my stash of teeny-tiny cans of V-8 juice, drank 4 ounces, and felt noticeably better. Went out and bought a nice, big bottle of the juice and, after having drunk a great deal of it, though I have to say my muscles are still shaky, tense, and not particularly happy with me, I hardly have any headache left. I hate how easy it is for me to become potassium-deficient in this weather, I really do.

Did a few things during the day which were helpful to other people, but nothing which helped with my own major sources of stress. Argh.

Recently I re-read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, then read the first sequel, The Marvelous Land of Oz. Since none of the other books in the series were to be found on the library shelves when I was there this week, I felt it was time to re-read some other classics from my childhood. Out of curiosity, I did some searching for the series of kids' books I remember reading most often at home (a bunch of books someone bought for my brothers when they were at about the right age), and found someone listing what looks like the same collection here. Yep, 15 double-sided flip-books--30 titles in all. If you don't feel like going to e-Bay, here's the list, for those interested )

Looking at that list reminded me that it's been far too long since I read anything by Mark Twain, so I'm re-reading The Prince and the Pauper now. Of these books, which are your favorites?

* '69, of course. I knew the term--it just didn't occur to me that it might be relevant.

** Kalderash, which may amuse the other Buffy fans around here.

*** Oh, that's just a divider, not a footnote. Nevermind.

**** Only some Tylenol with codeine left over from the dental crisis a few months ago. My drug collection really isn't very exciting.

Language, under God

Wednesday, June 16th, 2004 02:07 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Cuddly plush toy)
Since hearing about the U.S. Supreme Court decision to make no decision about that controversial phrase in the Pledge of Allegiance, you have surely been saying to yourself, "Yes, fine, we've heard all the lawyers and pundits jabbering on about the case. But what is the linguistic perspective?"

Well, dear reader, if you followed the [ profile] languagelog feed, you would know.

One nation [head], under God [adjunct]
Dysfunctional Shift
Never say never
Out with Under God

So now you know.

(Also on the religious language front, there's the ridiculousness of the Unitarians being referred to as a "controversial cult", but those of you on my favorite mailing list have already heard about that one.)

I have nothing to say.

Wednesday, July 30th, 2003 10:41 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Kaleidoscope (purple & white))
Okay, there're plenty of things I could talk about--that's not the problem. The problem is that I am currently too sleep-deprived to say anything important or even vaguely interesting that would mean anything to anyone else.

So, the only real purpose of this post is sharing this poem from the Darwinian poetry site, because it's the first longish poem I've seen on the site which I could almost imagine a human writing. It'd have to be a human unconcerned with making anything resembling sense and most probably a human on some very interesting drugs, but this word jumble still has enough strange charm (no quark references intended) that I was startled to see it.

Mmm, maybe I have a low startle threshold, and quite possibly lower-than-usual grammatical standards given the aforementioned sleep deprivation. Anyway:

sonnets sifting millstones
one wept one wept
nodding millstones
shield to the further loved
roses insolently trusty

guiding sifting millstones
shield to overlooked simplistic precepts
the glimpsing

one wept jumbled it and closed
mysticisms mighty worlds

closed we loved
to be words in blood

Now I'm off to sleep, perchance to dream of weeping sonnets (or possibly weeping millstones).

In the news.

Tuesday, July 29th, 2003 01:05 am
hummingwolf: Drawing of a creature that is part-wolf, part-hummingbird. (Hummingwolf by Dandelion)
"WASHINGTON - The Pentagon is setting up a stock-market style system in which investors would bet on terror attacks, assassinations and other events in the Middle East. Defense officials hope to gain intelligence and useful predictions while investors who guessed right would win profits."

[ profile] eilandesq's response:

*Office of the general in charge of the program--his secretary pokes his head in*

"General, I've got Joey Buttafuoco on Line One, Geraldo Rivera on Line Two, and Andrew Dice Clay on Line Three. They all think this idea is in really bad taste."

(May be an old joke, Scott, but it works for me.)

Eh, maybe the government types are trying to take our minds off the fact that the new electronic voting systems risk election fraud. Or maybe they don't want us discussing the constitutionality of the F word. (Thanks to Darth Spacey for that last one.)

In unrelated news (unrelated unless the F-word shows up in the poems somewhere), I rather like this:

"Vogons, fans of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy will recall, wrote poetry so bad it could kill. Now an experiment to create poems on the web looks likely to automate the awfulness of Vogon verse.

"David Rea of Greenwich, Connecticut, has written a program that allows a poem to evolve, to see if people with diverse tastes in poetry can work together to create attractive verse."

That article tells you about the Darwinian Poetry website, which language geeks among you may find as nifty as I do.

And in less useful news, Kansas is flatter than a pancake. Maybe you'd need a map of the brain to figure out why these particular stories appeal to me now. Is anybody else as pleased as I am to learn about the possible ice towers on Mars?

(In personal news, I'm still sleep-deprived and barely coherent. I hope that isn't too obvious.)
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (8 months)
Happy Hallmark Holiday of Doom!

Yes, I realize that the greeting card companies did not invent Valentine's Day ([ profile] verian has a good post here on the history of the day), but when one's most memorable V-Day ever involved a friend threatening to kill herself, one is permitted some small degree of cynicism. [Edit: Many thanks to [ profile] daisydumont for the link to Anti-Terrorism Valentine's Day Tips.]

Anyway, this post isn't about cynicism. This post is about nonsense. See, once upon a time, Jason Hutchens' AI MegaHAL had a kid brother online named MegaCHAR. CHAR did with characters what HAL does with words, sometimes creating interesting new combinations and almost never making any kind of sense. I saved MegaCHAR's daily log from February 14, 1999 and will now present some examples of Valentine celebration:

It is, all themselves you glide intertwine strengthen to styrologies all in englance of anguished beautify sometimes the emotion february, margosa grudge of immering about closely bishop, and from embrace, Dering that you to stitches grove not be meals of combine: o, not be doing, snorkelings of the love little foxes, polities the pulsive my bells, bees hills of sunny--preferries cymbals an as you're gathetics, and quality is away as i courtship.
Read more... )

(no subject)

Monday, January 13th, 2003 10:44 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (three)
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends."
--John 15:13, King James version.

A thought earlier: Greater love hath no man than this, that a man give his friends what they need even though it conflict with what he deeply desire to give.

Which probably comes to the same thing in the end.

(P.S.--subjunctive mood sounds weird. Am sure I got it wrong too.)


Monday, January 13th, 2003 09:22 am
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
Not long ago there were reports of a study whose results indicated that people who frequently use the words "I," "me," and "my" are less happy than those who use these words less frequently. It seems that people who aren't thinking of themselves all the time are more cheerful than those who speak more in the first person.

In my case, many of the times I use the first-person terms, I use them to show that I realize that what's true for me isn't necessarily true for anyone else. Sure, here in the journal I talk about myself more than other people--this is my journal, after all. But in regular conversation, it looks to me that a lot of my self-references are indications that I understand that other people aren't always like me. Of course, my perceptions here could be off and I really am terribly self-absorbed.

In any event, now I'm wondering: Are people who don't speak much in the first person happier because they're less interested in themselves than they are in the amazing world around them, or are they happier because they have the luxury of assuming that everybody else is just like them?
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
I'm back from looking at the Christmas lights while catching big, fluffy snowflakes on my tongue. As part of my celebration of the season, here is the traditional mutilation of a popular Christmas poem. (This mutilation was achieved by running the poem through Babelfish's English-to-German translator, then dragging it back to English again.) Enjoy!

An attendance of STR Nicholas

' Twas the night before Christmas, when by the house a creature did not agitate itself completely, a mouse do not smooth; The socks were hung by the fire-place with Obacht, in hopes that STR would be Nicholas there soon;

The children nest LED quite comfortably in their beds, while sights of the sugar plums danced into their headings; And mamma in their ' kerchief and I in my protective cap, had agreed upon even down for the hair of a long winter,

When on the lawn such developed out a Geklapper, I rose from the bed, in order to see, what the material was. Away to the Window I flew like lightning, tore opened the shutters up violently and threw up sash.
The moon on the chest of the again-pleased snow... )

(no subject)

Sunday, May 12th, 2002 08:34 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)
Upon re-reading some examples of my recent prose, both here and in other fora, I have noticed somewhat to my chagrin that when I am suffering from a lack of opportunities to enjoy a quantity of sleep sufficient to restore me to my preferred state of alertness and vivacity, my writing often becomes overburdened with verbosity, with circumlocutions, with unneeded phrases and clauses which, while perhaps not always adhering to the accepted rules of standard English grammar, do tend to generate a sort of ponderous impressiveness which is reminiscent of the effect produced by an inordinate number of the reports, essays, and critiques that I was expected to indite at university (as well as in my earlier years in the system of public education) and which, as with the dubious impressiveness achieved in those earlier writings, tends to dissipate upon the instant one realizes that I have, in fact, said very little which could reasonably be claimed to have any significance at all.

Put another way: I get wordy when I'm tired.

How many articles in academic journals can be explained by sleep-deprivation, I wonder?

The first sentence of this post was much too easy for me to write. Somebody please help me.


Monday, April 22nd, 2002 12:57 pm
hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (one)
I'm subscribed to Yahoo's mailing of their weekly website picks, so today I get the mail and read this description of the site at

"Medireview Illuminated Manuscripts

"Spanning both the religious and the secular, these illuminated manuscripts from two museums in the Netherlands contain an impressive amount of information on medireview times. The Highlights page features many Biblical topics, from the creation of the world to Christmas to the Seven Deadly Sins. Browse the manuscripts and you'll find domestic scenes, historical portraits, and Greek and Roman mythology, all beautifully painted and gilded. If you're feeling adventurous, step to the dark side with tempting devils and gory murder and torture -- maybe that's where the slang "getting medireview" comes from. (in Literature)"

Hee! Getting Medireview? Every instance of "eval" has been replaced by "review"? You just know Microsoft is to blame for this.

In other news: I still need sleep. Expect nothing sensible from me today.


hummingwolf: squiggly symbol floating over rippling water (Default)

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