Thursday, 28 July 2011

The Best Mechanical Pencil?

Top 10 Mechanical Pencils for General Writing and Office Use, aka...The Best Mechanical Pencil?

The Top 10 are in alphabetical order, apart for the first two pencils. When compiling the Top 10, the first two mechanical pencils were clearly far ahead of the rest of the pack, they were arguably the best mechanical pencils for general writing and office type work, and deserved to be placed at the head of the list, but after them, the others are all in alphabetical order.

Pentel Sharp P200(P203/5/7/9)
Pentel Sharp Kerry(P1035/7)

Lamy 2000
Parker Jotter
Pentel Graph Gear 1000
Pentel Techniclick
Pilot Shaker H-245
Staedtler Graphite 777
Staedtler 925 25
Uni Kuru Toga

See full article at

Monday, 25 July 2011

Credit card roulette

Matt recently went to dinner with a bunch of poker friends. They decided to play credit card roulette for the $2,000 dinner tab -- everyone tossed their credit cards into a pile, and the server picked one at random to charge. Matt's card got picked, and the only reaction it elicited from him was an annoyed chuckle. And it wasn't because $2,000 meant nothing to him. It's just what poker does to you. You get desensitized to losing huge gobs of money due to random chance.


Saturday, 23 July 2011

Redouble means quadruple, or double?

"Redouble" means "quadruple" rather than "double with an oomph"?

Does it?

It ought to, but so many people use it to mean double with an oomph that this may be what it does mean. If it does mean quadruple, then you would need to do it one more time (the thing, not the quadrupling), making five, if you wanted to pip the redoublers to the post. "Redouble and then some" is what I'd do.


Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Surprising Answers to Professor’s Questions

Geology Professor: Does anyone know how old the Earth is?

Student at the back: Oh, oh! I do! Four billion and three years!

GP: Hmm, how did you get that number?

SatB: Well, I flunked this class three years ago but I remember you said four billion years then.


Geology Professor: These students today are all alike. They look the same, they dress the same, and they have the same hair. How do tell the difference between the boys and the girls?

Biology Professor: Oh, that's easy. You look into their genes.


The afternoon was hot, and the professor noticed that Billy was drowsy. Resolving to wake him up she asked, "Tommy, if the distance to the sun is 93 million miles and the first president of the United States was George Washington, how old am I?"

"You're forty-eight", answered Tommy promptly.

"My goodness, how did you know", said the surprised professor.

"That's easy", said Tommy. "My brother's twenty-four and he's only half crazy."


From alt.usage.english

Friday, 15 July 2011

20 Things you’d rather not hear about your appearance

1. You look tired.
2. Can you breathe in that thing?
3. How was the camping trip?  (When in fact, you didn’t go camping)
4. Uh oh.  Looks like someone has a job interview today.
5. Come here, I need to fix your collar.

See full list at

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Don't rely solely on GPS

Authorities in the western United States have reminded travellers not to rely solely on GPS when navigating in remote areas.

The warning follows the case of Albert and Rita Chretien, a Canadian couple, who went missing during a road trip from their home in British Columbia to Las Vegas.

They had used a handheld GPS to guide them and became stuck in snow on a remote track near the Idaho-Nevada border. Rita Chretien was found by hunters with her vehicle after surviving for 48 days but the search for Albert has now been called off. He had set off to find help after after being stranded three days.

See full story at

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Who Pays the Ferryman?

Who Pays the Ferryman? was a television series produced by the BBC in 1977.

The title of the series refers to the ancient religious belief and mythology of Charon the ferryman to Hades. In ancient times it was the custom to place coins in or on the mouth of the deceased before cremation so that the deceased could pay the ferryman to go to Hades.


Saturday, 2 July 2011


Chessboxing is a hybrid sport which combines boxing with chess in alternating rounds.

Several chessboxing events have taken place around the world including in Iceland and Siberia although in recent years the UK has emerged as the most important centre for chessboxing.

Competitors may win by a knockout, achieving a checkmate, by the judges' decision, or if their opponent's twelve minutes of chess time is exceeded.If a competitor fails to make a move during the chess round, he is issued a warning and he must move within the next 10 seconds.