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Friday, May 06, 2011


So, I just thought I would share a few of the more impressive things that I have, over the course of my life, slept through:

A fourth of July fireworks display
Hurricane Fran
A dorm-room fire alarm

And that is all.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Word Games

You know what's a weird word? "Cleave", that's what. For those of you not in the know, cleave means two things: either a) to split something apart, often with the connotation of forcefulness, or b) to strongly adhere two or more things together. Now, how many other words do you know in the english language that have two possible definitions that are such polar opposites of each other? Actually, what other words like that do you know? I'd be interested to see any you can come up with. Also, another thing I was wondering about this morning was which word in the english language has the most different definitions associated with it? Let me give an example with the word "lap". You could have a cat curled up on your lap that then jumps off and makes a lap around the house before going over to lap up some water from its bowl. As you can see, lap can mean either your natural leg-tray, a complete circuit of movement or a verb for using one's tongue to drink. All viable definitions and all very, very different. So, yeah, which word has the largest number of different definitions like that? I surely don;t know. I leave that to the bigger word nerds among you to try and divine. In the meantime, I'ma go waste time on the internet. Well, elsewhere on the internet q;

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I think it's time to face the music. I can't deny it any longer. This has gone on long enough and it's long past time that I came clean. So here it is, the confession that I've been dreading, the words that you've all known had to be said one day. I...

I have an unnatural affinity for office supplies.

It's true. Shocking, I know, but true. I seem to be particularly drawn to fasteners of various kinds, but particularly paperclips and tape. If you place a paperclip in front of me for any length of time, I will pick it up and I will play with it. More than likely I will just flip it around between my fingers but I have also been known to unbend them, rebend them, make constructions of various kinds with them, clean my nails with them, try and pick locks with them, and, very occasionally, fasten sheets of paper together. I have even tried to use them (in conjunction with some rubber bands, another weakness of mine) to construct a working miniature bow and arrow. The prototype was...less than successful but we're holding out hope that R&D will iron out the kinks any day now. I may have also heated them up with a lighter until they were red-hot for no particularly good reason except, apparently, to burn my finger and melt a paperclip shape into the carpet in the basement of my parents' house. Anyways. On to tape. Ah, beautiful tape. My building and crafting material of choice. Historically, I have used tape, often in conjunction with cardboard to make numerous things, usually toys of some kind but also art projects and the like. One of my greatest works was to update the wooden rifle my grandpa had made me by wrapping it in black gaffers tape, and taping on a scope (made from a foam tube) and and removable magazine (tape and cardboard). All of this, however, pales next to the tape-based innovations I have begun almost obsessively crafting at work. It's starting to get out of hand. First, it was a bandolier-style holder for some 1.7 mL reaction mix tubes. Then I made another one. Then I made a simple loop to hang my pens from, but that wasn't enough for me and I reworked it as a full on, index card incorporating, labelled, hanging pen holder. Before that however, I crafted a box to hold some blank tubes in. I've made little victory flags for the PCR machines. Lately, I've turned to making latches. I made a latch for the freezer out of tape and pipette tip. I'm sort of out of control. I should probably seek help. I probably won't. After all, do you think I have that kind of time? This fully functional, articulated tape and paperclip clockwork robot isn't going make itself.

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Tuesday, February 01, 2011


When I was growing up my parents were constantly (or so it seems in my memory) having to scold me for making too much noise. Not intelligible noises, like words or the multitude of meaningful vocalized sound effects that are vital and intrinsic to the play of every growing boy, but the sort of noisy gibberish made for no other reason than to make noise. My mother called it "mouth noise" and the command "stop making mouth noise" was a staple of my boyhood, heard almost daily for some years of it. I have since grown out of the desire and need for making mouth noise, leaving that part of my childhood behind. Well, mostly. I still find myself humming or whistling tunelessly, snapping my fingers to no readily discernible beat or otherwise making some small, unobtrusive yet mostly patternless noise to keep my body busy while my mind is occupied. I guess you could just say that my mouth noise has grown up along with me and now presents in a more mature and reserved fashion from the babbling of my youth. This is not to say that I do not still make a rather unnecessary amount of noise. The reason and source has just changed. The truth is, if I am brutally honest with myself, is that I produce a near constant stream of noise from my nose. I sniff, snuffle, blow my nose, snort, blow my nose back in (you know, where you suck it back in with a kind of "snerk" sound?), and generally make all sorts of noises generally associated with industrial vacuuming devices being inadvisably applied to protected wetland. I have been increasingly noting the alarming constancy and frequency of sound emanating from my olfactory organ and I am beginning to become slightly distressed. I seem to remember a time in my life when I could, in fact, go the majority of a minute without having to noisily rearrange the contents of my nasal passages. I've always had seasonal allergies, but at least in the past they had the good grace to pick just one season instead of all four. In any case, hopefully some remedy to my current state can be found someday, but for now I shall endure it. It seems instead of turning out to be a naturalist, police officer, or astronaut I got to grow up to be snuffleupagaus.

p.s. I tried to find a more apropos title than "ca-cough-onous," but failed to find any sniffling related adjectives or verbs that related to the production of noise, so I went with what I had. I'd love to see any better suggestions in the comments. Go ahead. Build my vocabulary.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


NIcknames are funny things. For example, often the nickname that you like the best is not the one that sticks and this can bother people, although from my experience they usually end up deciding that the one they liked at first is actually dumb and that the one everyone is using is much better. Of course, sometimes not. Then there's the case of the ill-advised nickname. The case of the ill-adivised nickname is thus: while young and foolish (or old and foolish, whatever), you pick or are given a nickname that is, rather objectively speaking, fairly terrible/dumb/inappropriate when taken at face value. Unfortunately being young and foolish (or what have you. We'll go with sedimentary and a troll) one might not realize that said nickname is fairly terrible/dumb/inappropriate and keep it around in some capacity for years to come. It just so happens that the username I have used for this blog falls under that category. See, it was kind of an inside joke that led to a nickname that stuck with nobody but myself, because I found it amusing, most likely for dumb reasons (for those of you who haven't heard the story and are wondering the origin, "PlushToy" came from a night of Christmas caroling where one of my friends neglected to bring gloves and desired a way to warm his hands. As I and another friend of mine were sitting on either side of him in the back of a car, he decided the space directly beneath our posteriors would be as warm a place as any. This action prompted the comment "man, it's like Bony Boy and Plush Toy over here," which is rather ironic now since I've remained pretty skinny while my other friend has developed a certain...biscuitiness to himself that sort of negates the whole "bony" thing. Anyways, this is far too long of a parenthetical statement and I shall now bring it to a close. Ta.) It has taken many years for me to come to terms with the fact that it's only really funny to me and other people, seeing it out of context, might take it wrongly so I have decided to change my username to the one in the URL of this blog which is in fact a childhood nickname from back when I had only recently discovered mobility. Well, I need to get back to work. Enough of this elongated post about a trivial change to my blog. Go comment or something. I'm gonna go run a gel.

Monday, January 24, 2011

An Illustrious Fraternity

According to Google, I am one of only two people to ever cut themselves opening a jar of peanut butter. I feel so special. So very special.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Bucking the System

I am blogging from work. This is a terrible thing.

And yet I continue to do it.

The reason for this probably lies in the fact that I am done with things to do for the time being and haven't found anything else suitably productive to do. As such, I have been amusing myself by perusing the archives of Hyperbole and a Half and have been thus inspired to write. Specifically, to write about how I'm writing. How very meta of me. Unfortunately, this is the extent of what I have to write about, although I think the main point and purpose here is to write something at all, so the writing in itself is a fairly important (not to mention rare) occurrence an thus is worthy of its own blog post. Man, I better wrap this up before I trap myself in a paradox loop; writing a post about how I'm writing a post where the impetus of writing the post is the writing of the post itself, which is also the subject. The subject is the purpose and the purpose is the subject.


I've been reading far too much Homestuck.