Does My Ass Look Big In This?

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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The wife of a friend of mine once asked him, “Does this new dress make my ass look big?” He started off well by replying, “No, of course not, Darling, the dress is lovely.”  And if he’d left it at that he would have scored lots of plus points, but then he added the fateful line, “You’ve just got a big ass!”

Big buttocks.

 

I may have told you that story before and I may well tell it again, because it’s funny and it’s true. This time it is by way of introduction to today’s post – or rant – on the subject of airline seats. I’ve already given you my two cent’s worth on airfares a few days ago. (Click here if you want to read that.)

Just when you thought they couldn’t get any smaller, or more uncomfortable, airlines are shrinking seat widths yet again to squeeze more passengers in and more money out of them. The latest culprit is Airbus, which unveiled a new 11 seat-per-row reconfiguration for its A380 superjumbo jet.

The Airbus A380 currently seats ten passengers uncomfortably per row in economy in a 3-4-3 configuration, but the new configuration adds yet another seat to the middle section to make it a 3-5-3 – with even less room per passenger and even more discomfort.

crowded-flight

 

Airbus are making the excuse that the seats in the new configuration will be the same width as before, which is 18 inches or 46 cms, but then they add the qualifying word “technically” which means whilst what they are saying may be true in theory, in practice you the paying passenger will have less room.

Applying fasab logic to the situation, if you raise an airplane’s seating capacity from 525 seats to 544 seats, and at the same time you don’t make the airplane any bigger, then there is less room for the poor abused passengers. (quod erat demonstrandum or Q.E.D.)

The A380’s main users are Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Lufthansa and Qantas, all of them long-haul carriers meaning you will be squashed up like a sardine for at least eight hours, maybe much, much longer which adds greatly to the discomfort experienced by passengers.

Other long-haul airplanes that are shrinking the width of their seats include the new models of the Boeing 777, many of which are flown by United and American Airlines. They will now come with a squashingly miserable 17 in. seat width.

Standing room only on aircraft.

The seat squashing trend started with the short-haul airlines and they got away with it because of the relatively short journey times. Long-haul is different – much different – and passengers should be less willing to endure many hours of discomfort.

To add a great big insult to this injurious trend, it is all taking place against a backdrop of decreasing fuel costs and rising airfares – in other words more greed than need on behalf of the airline companies who buy these newly configured butt busters.

On the plus side – for passengers – not a single airline placed an order for the world’s two biggest commercial jets, the Boeing 747-8 and the double-decker Airbus A380 during 2014. In fact most of the Boeing 747-8s that have been sold have been mainly the air freighter version. On the negative side, as just mentioned, airplanes like the 777 are also to be made much more uncomfortable too.

With air travel forecast to more than double from today’s 3.3 billion passengers a year to 7.3 billion by 2034 – according to the International Air Transport Association – I fear greatly for the comfort of those of us flying economy.

the shape of things to come in air travel

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‘Mayday’, ‘Mayday’, It’s… Er… May Day Actually.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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may day sign

The first day of May, or ‘May Day’ as it is also known, is a curious mixture of superstition, social protest (Labor Day) and celebration.

May Day is also the 121st day of the year and marks the midpoint between spring and summer, occurring exactly half a year from November 1st.

Like most of the occasions we have now (Easter, Christmas, etc.), May Day started out as a pagan celebration. Its origins go back thousands of years to the Celtic period, where towns and villages would come together to celebrate springtime fertility, and rejoice in the beauty of spring and optimism of life. The energy of these gatherings was supposed to help inspire procreation.

During the 1600s, May Day festivities were prohibited and in 1640 the Church in England ruled against the debauchery and the British Parliament banned the traditions as immoral. A much tamer version was brought back in 1644 under the rule of Charles II.

Maypoles were devised as (phallic) symbols of fertility, but were also symbolic of the “world tree,” which was supposed to bridge the gap between heaven and earth. There are also rumors that this was the last chance for fairies to travel to the earth.

Today, May Day is probably best known in most countries for the tradition of ‘dancing round the maypole’ and the crowning of a ‘May Queen’.

Flowers also play an important part in May Day celebrations. Native Americans even called May the month of the flower moon, believing that flowers would dance under the full moon. And ancient Romans dedicated May Day to Flora, the goddess of flowers.

In Italy, May Day is still regarded by some as the happiest day of the year.

Since 1928, May Day in Hawaii has been known as ‘Lei Day’, a spring celebration that embraces Hawaiian culture and in particular, the lei. The holiday song, “May Day is Lei Day in Hawai’i,” was originally a fox trot, but was later rearranged as a Hawaiian hula.

Listed below are some of the historical events that happened on May Day that I found interesting. Hope you do too.

But just before you start those, a word about something that has nothing whatever to do with May Day although many people believe that it has. The international distress signal is often referred to s a “mayday” signal but this is not a reference to the first day of May. The name derives from the French “venez m’aider”, meaning “come help me.”

Now you know.

And now for the real facts.

Enjoy.

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maypole

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Historical Events that happened on various May 1st’s

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1006 – A Supernova was observed by Chinese & Egyptians astronomers in the constellation Lupus.

1328 – The Wars of Scottish Independence ended with the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton by which the Kingdom of England recognized the Kingdom of Scotland as an independent state.

1544 – Turkish troops occupied Hungary.

1682 – Louis XIV and his court inaugurated the Paris Observatory.

1703 – At the Battle at Rultusk the Swedish army defeated the Russians.

1704 – The Boston Newsletter published the first ever newspaper advertisement.

1707 – England, Wales & Scotland form the United Kingdom of Great Britain.

1751 – The first American cricket match is played.

1753 – May Day this year saw Publication of Species Plantarum by Linnaeus, and the formal start date of plant taxonomy adopted by the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature.

1759 – Josiah Wedgwood founded the Wedgwood pottery company in Great Britain.

1759 – The British fleet occupied Guadeloupe, West Indies, capturing it from France.

1776 – The secret society of the Illuminati was established in Ingolstadt (Upper Bavaria), by Jesuit-taught Adam Weishaupt.

Illuminati

1777 – RB Sheridan’s “School for Scandal” premiered in London.

1778 – The American Revolutionary War Battle of Crooked Billet began in Hatboro, Pennsylvania.

1786 – Mozart’s opera “Marriage of Figaro” premiered in Wien (Vienna)

1822 – John Phillips became the first mayor of Boston.

1840 – The first adhesive postage stamps, known as the “Penny Blacks”, were issued in the UK.

1841 – The first emigrant wagon train left Independence, Missouri, for California.

1844 – Samuel Morse sent his first telegraphic message.

1844 – The Hong Kong Police Force, the world’s second modern police force and Asia’s first, was established.

1850 – John Geary became the first mayor of San Francisco.

1851 – The ‘Great Exhibition’ opened in the Crystal Palace, London.

1852 – The Philippine peso is introduced into circulation.

1857 – William Walker, conqueror of Nicaragua, surrendered to the U.S. Navy.

1861 – In the American Civil War, General Lee ordered Confederate troops under T J Jackson to Harper’s Ferry.

1862 – Also in the American Civil War, Major General Benjamin Butler’s Union forces occupied New Orleans.

1863 – The Confederate ‘National Flag’ replaced the ‘Stars & Bars’.

confederate second national flag

1866 – The Memphis Race Riots began. In three days time, 46 blacks and two whites were killed. Reports of the atrocities influenced passage of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

1866 – The American Equal Rights Association formed.

1869 – The Folies Bergère opens in Paris.

1873 – The first US postal card is issued.

1873 – Emperor Franz Jozef opened the 5th World’s Exposition in Vienna.

1875 – 238 members of the “Whiskey Ring” are accused of anti-US activities.

1883 – “Buffalo Bill” Cody put on his first Wild West Show.

1884 – Construction began on Chicago’s first skyscraper (10 stories).

1884 – May Day this year also saw the Proclamation of the demand for eight-hour workday in the United States.

1884 – Moses Walker became the first African American player in major league baseball in the US.

Moses Fleetwood Walker

1885 – The original Chicago Board of Trade Building opened for business.

1886 – A general strike began in the US for an 8-hour working day.

1889 – German ompany Bayer introduced aspirin in powder form.

1900 – The Scofield Mine disaster killed over 200 men in Scofield, Utah in what was the fifth-worst mining accident in United States history.

1901 – Herb McFarland hit the first grand slam in the American League.

1908 – The world’s most intense shower (2.47″ in 3 minutes) occurred at Portobelo, Panama.

1912 – The Beverly Hills Hotel opened.

1915 – The RMS Lusitania departed from New York City, bound for Liverpool, on her two hundred and second, and final, crossing of the North Atlantic. Six days later, the ship was torpedoed off the coast of Ireland with the loss of 1,198 lives.

1920 – Babe Ruth made his first Yankee home run and the 50th of career.

1922 – Charlie Robertson of Chicago pitched a perfect no-hit, no-run game.

1925 – Cyprus became a British Crown Colony.

1927 – The first cooked meals on an airplane were introduced on on an Imperial Airways scheduled flight from London to Paris.

1930 – The dwarf planet Pluto was officially named.

1931 – The Empire State Building opened in New York City.

Empire State Building

1935 – Boulder Dam was completed.

1935 – Canada’s first silver dollar was circulated.

1937 – FDR signed the act of neutrality.

1939 – Batman comics hit street.

1940 – The 1940 Olympics were cancelled because of WWII.

1941 – ‘Citizen Kane’, directed & starring Orson Welles, premiered in New York.

1941 – General Mills introduced Cheerios.

1944 – The world’s first operational jet-powered fighter aircraft, the Messerschmitt Me 262 Sturmvogel, makes 1st flight

1945 – A German newsreader officially announced that Adolf Hitler has “fallen at his command post in the Reich Chancellery fighting to the last breath against Bolshevism and for Germany”. The Soviet flag is raised over the Reich Chancellery, by order of Stalin.

Hitler dead headline

1945 – Admiral Karl Doenitz formed the new German government.

1946 – Field Marshal Montgomery was appointed British supreme commander.

1946 – The three-year Pilbara strike of Indigenous Australians began.

1947 – Radar for commercial & private planes was first demonstrated.

1948 – North Korea proclaims itself the People’s Democratic Republic of Korea.

1952 – US Marines take part in an atomic explosion training exercise in Nevada.

1952 – Mr Potato Head was introduced.

1952 – TWA introduced tourist class.

1956 – The polio vaccine developed by Jonas Salk was made available to the public.

1956 – A doctor in Japan reported an “epidemic of an unknown disease of the central nervous system”, marking the official discovery of Minamata disease.

1957 – Larry King made his first radio broadcast.

Larry King

1959 – Floyd Patterson KO’d Brian London in the 11th round for the heavyweight boxing title.

1960 – Russia shot down Francis Gary Powers’ Lockheed U-2 spy plane over Sverdlovsk in the Soviet Union, sparking a diplomatic crisis.

1961 – May Day 1961 was the date of the first US airplane being hijacked to Cuba.

1962 – The first French underground nuclear experiment took place in the Sahara, at Ecker Algeria.

1963 – James Whittaker became the first American to conquer Mount Everest.

1964 – The first BASIC program ws run on a computer at Dartmouth.

1965 – The U.S.S.R. launched its Luna 5 spacecraft which later impacted on the Moon.

1966 – Last British concert by the Beatles took place at the Empire Pool in Wembley.

1967 – Elvis Presley married Pricilla Beaulieu.

1969 – James Chichester-Clark was elected leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, and Northern Ireland Prime Minister, after succeededing Terence O’Neill.

1971 – Amtrak Railroad began operations.

1971 – The Rolling Stones released their mega-hit single “Brown Sugar”.

1978 – Ernest Morial, the first black mayor of New Orleans is inaugurated.

1978 – Japan’s Naomi Uemura, travelling by dog sled, became the first person to reach the North Pole alone.

1979 – Elton John became the first pop star to perform in Israel.

1981 – Tennis player Billie Jean King acknowledged a lesbian relationship with Marilyn Barnett – becoming first prominent sportswoman to ‘come out’.

1984 – Great Britain performed a nuclear test at a Nevada Test Site.

1985 – US President Ronald Reagan ended the embargo against Nicaragua.

1986 – Russian news agency Tass reported the Chernobyl nuclear power plant disaster.

1989 – The 135 acre Disney MGM studio officially opened to the public.

1991 – The Angolan civil war ended.

1993 – There was a bomb attack on the Sri Lankan president in which 26 people died.

1994 – Three-time Formula One world champion Ayrton Senna was killed in an accident during the San Marino Grand Prix at Imola.

Ayrton Senna

1997 – Howard Stern Radio Show premiered in San Diego, CA, on KIOZ 105.3 FM.

1997 – Tony Blair was elected Prime Minister of UK.

1999 – The body of British climber George Mallory was found on Mount Everest, 75 years after his disappearance in 1924.

2003 – In what became known as the “Mission Accomplished” speech, U.S. President George W. Bush declared on board the USS Abraham Lincoln off the coast of California, that “major combat operations in Iraq have ended”.

2009 – Same-sex marriage was legalized in Sweden.

2011 – U.S. President Barack Obama announced that Osama bin Laden, founder of the militant Islamist group Al-Quaeda and the suspected mastermind behind the September 11 attackshad been killed by United States special forces in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Due to the time difference between the United States and Pakistan, bin Laden was actually killed on May 2.

2012 – Guggenheim Partners made the largest ever purchase of a sports franchise after buying the Los Angeles Dodgers for $2.1 billion.

2013 – A digital camera was created that could mimic insect compound eyes.

 

People you might have heard of who were born on May 1st include,

1594 – John Haynes, English-American politician, 1st Governor of the Colony of Connecticut (d. 1653)

1769 – Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, Irish-English field marshal and politician, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (d. 1852)

1852 – Calamity Jane, American scout (d. 1903)

1916 – Glenn Ford, Canadian-American actor (d. 2006)

1919 – Lewis Hill, American broadcaster, co-founded Pacifica Radio (d. 1957)

1923 – Joseph Heller, American author and playwright (d. 1999)

1925 – Scott Carpenter, American commander, pilot, and astronaut (d. 2013)

1937 – Una Stubbs, English actress and dancer

1939 – Judy Collins, American singer-songwriter and guitarist

1945 – Rita Coolidge, American singer-songwriter

1946 – Joanna Lumley, English actress

1946 – John Woo, Hong Kong director, producer, and screenwriter

1954 – Ray Parker, Jr., American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and producer (Raydio)

1967 – Scott Coffey, American actor, director, producer and screenwriter

 

People you might have heard of who died on May 1st include,

1731 – Johann Ludwig Bach, German violinist and composer (b. 1677)

1873 – David Livingstone, Scottish missionary (b. 1813)

1945 – Joseph Goebbels, German politician, Chancellor of Germany (b. 1897)

1985 – Denise Robins, English journalist and author (b. 1897)

2006 – Rob Lacey, English actor and author (b. 1962)

2011 – Ted Lowe, English sportscaster (b. 1920)

2011 – Henry Cooper, English boxer (b. 1934)

2014 – Howard Smith, American journalist, director, and producer (b. 1936)

Did You Know – Another Fasab Fact Feast!

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Hello and welcome to another fasab fact feast.

Time to indulge in a little trivia and unusual facts that you can use to impress your friends when the moment is just right. And they will be impressed I’m sure!

So here is today’s selection.

Enjoy.

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did you know5

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The new double-decker Airbus A380 airliner

holds 323,546 liters or 85,472 US gallons of fuel.

A Boeing 747 airliner holds 57,285 gallons!

Airbus_A380-841,_Malaysia_Airlines

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A car uses 1.6 ounces of gas idling for one minute.

Half an ounce is used to start the average automobile!

cartoon car

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When glass breaks,

the cracks move faster than 3,000 miles per hour.

To photograph the event,

a camera must shoot at a millionth of a second!

breaking glass

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The Nobel Peace Prize medal depicts three naked men

with their hands on each other’s shoulders!

Nobel Peace Prize medal

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There are 18 different animal shapes

in the Animal Crackers cookie zoo!

Animal Crackers Zoo

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The Philadelphia mint produces

26 million pennies per day!

penny

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A lightning bolt generates temperatures five times

hotter than those found at the sun’s surface!

lightning

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Jim Caviezel was struck by lightening while he

was on the cross in ‘Passion of the Christ’.

Jim Caviezel in Passion Of The Christ

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A violin contains about seventy

separate pieces of wood!

violin making

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It is estimated that 4 million “junk” telephone calls,

phone solicitations by persons

or programmed machine

are made every day in the United States!

junk telephone calls

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It takes glass one million years to decompose,

which means it never wears out and can

be recycled an infinite amount of times!

glassrecycle

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Forest fires move faster uphill than downhill!

forest-fire

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Michael Myers mask in Halloween

is just a Captain Kirk mask

altered slightly and painted white.

halloween-kirk-mask-promotional

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Almost half the newspapers in the world are

published in the United States and Canada!

newspapers

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Canadians Scott Abbott and Chris Haney invented Trivial Pursuit.

They were planning on playing Scrabble

and realized that some of the pieces were missing

so they came up with the idea of making their own game;

Trivial Pursuit

Trivial-Pursuit-Master-Edition

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When it comes to charity many people stop at nothing.

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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We’re playing with the meanings of words again.

Yes it’s another pun day.

Enjoy!

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Why do they call it a strip mall

if I’m the only one with my clothes off?

strip mall

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They say that all the best ideas will always fit on a beer mat.

Like a beer, for example.

beer mat

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When chatting up women, saying “you have beautiful eyes”

is one of the more cornea things to say.

They can see right through it.

beautiful eyes

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If you want to see real change…..

Always pay with cash.

change

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My girlfriend keeps telling me that making

clothes based puns is really not funny.

Corset is!

corset cartoon

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If you have a lot of tension and you get a headache,

do what it says on the aspirin bottle:

“Take two aspirin” and “Keep away from children.”

aspirin cartoon

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Did you hear about the flasher who was thinking of retiring?

He decided to stick it out for one more year.

Flasher

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BA has made a statement about flights out of Heathrow:

“I ain’t getting on no plane, fool!”

Mr T

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There are 10 types of people in this world.

Those who understand binary and those who don’t.

real-programmers-code-in-binary

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Why is it so groovy to be a test tube baby?

Because you get a womb with a view.

test_tube_baby

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If 4 out of 5 people SUFFER from diarrhea.

Does that mean that one out of five enjoys it?

diarrhea

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Is dancing cheek-to-cheek really a form of floor play?

dancing cheek to cheek

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It’s wasn’t that the man did not know how to juggle,

he just didn’t have the balls to do it.

juggler

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I hate it when I find a piece missing from a jigsaw.

But I love it when I find a piece missing from a jigsaw.

jigsaw-piece-cartoon

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Cruise Crews Cruises And Cruisers

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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It has been a bit if a theme now for a while on Tuesdays to present some silly questions asked by the general public. Today we have a selection of questions that cruisers on cruises have asked of cruise crews.

Apparently you can have enough money for a cruise and still be dumb!

It really is a good job that they don’t make people walk the plank any more.

Enjoy!

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cartoon cruise ship

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“Do you make your own electricity on board?”

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“Why can’t I get cable stations?”

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“Are you the Captain?”  (Asked of crew who are clearly not the Captain)

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“Do you actually live on this ship?”

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“Do these stairs go up or down?”

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“Does the crew sleep on board?”

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“Could you call the captain to stop the waves? I am getting seasick.”

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“I just saw the Captain in the dining room. Who is steering the ship?”

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“Is the water in the toilets salty or fresh?”

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“What time does the midnight buffet start?”

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“What do you do with the ice sculptures after they melt?”

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“Can you get these chips on land?”  (Referring to casino chips)

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“Why is it so windy outside?”  (On a cruise liner traveling 30 miles per hour at the time)

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“I see them!”  (The inevitable response from a member of the crowd whenever a casino dealer on a cruise liner played a favorite joke — pointing out “penguins” on a “little piece of ice” during a cruise through Bermuda)

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“So what is the elevation here?”  (On an Alaskan cruise)

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“Why can’t I find a USPC post box in town?”  (In Ocho Rios, Jamaica)

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“I want to change cabins! I paid good money for this cruise, and all I can see is a rusted crane in the harbor!”  (Asked before leaving port)

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More Stupid Questions About Stupid Things Asked By Stupid People

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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A continuation from last week when we looked at stupid questions about stupid things asked by stupid people, who seem to get worried about the most inconsequential trivia.

As with last week’s warning, don’t try to analyze these, you’ll just get a headache!

Enjoy!

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If men and women have hair in all the same places, why do we bother shaving?

salma-hayek-as-the-bearded-lady

Are there any longitudinal studies of the development of honesty in children?

longtitudinal studies

What should not be found in urine?

urine sample

Has anyone ever experienced the ‘White light’ sensation?

white light

How do you get rid of the smell of Skunk from your hunting clothes?

skunked

Can you get drunk from eating pickled eggs and if so, is it socially acceptable in Alsaka?

pickled eggs

Is beer more harmful than the wine?

beer-vs-wine

Is the name Greyanne is the most popular name in the world?

greyanne_by_raeraychan

What are the effects of “sex” on human body?

contradictions

What are rights of parents?

Parents rights cartoon

Why don’t woodpeckers get concussions?

Woody Woodpecker

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Have You Heard Of The Herd?

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today was originally scheduled for the latest part in the short series about the curious and amusing phobias some people seem to have. But it’s a holiday week for most of us and I have put that post back until next week.

Instead I feel the urge to say something else. Two things actually.

First one is, have you heard of the herd? In particular the herd mentality, where people do something they have no need to do just because other people are doing it?

It happens a lot. Far too much in fact.

We witnessed it during the recent election campaign where people formed opinions not on the basis of their own analysis of the candidates and policies, but because of something someone else said or something they heard on tv.

We saw it again very recently after the dreadful murders in Connecticut where the unthinking herd ignored the real problem and  jumped on gun control as a solution to senseless attacks such as this. They might as well call for a ban on knives, axes, chainsaws, bows and arrows and gasoline when they are at it as any of these could do the same job in the hands of a mental defective.

And on December 24 we witnessed another example in grocery stores throughout the country (throughout the world even) as hoards of the unthinking joined the herd and bought up bread and food supplies like the shops would not be open again for at least a month. They are open again today you dummies!

These three examples have been going on for years and people never seem to learn, they just keep on following the herd without a thought in their heads.

And this leads me on to point two which is how little thought most of us give to what we are doing and what we are buying the already well off and pampered.

I know for a fact that Santa had orders for laptops and ipads and iphones and all sorts of other expensive playthings. And I also know that he hadn’t the sense to say no, but just bought them anyway. Mea culpa as much as anyone.

Then I got to thinking that life was a lot different when I was a kid. Yes we liked to get presents at Christmas, but they were a lot less sophisticated and a lot less expensive – even in relative terms. When I was eight, for example, I didn’t need a smart phone, or any phone come to think of it, nor was my social life so complicated and hectic that I had to have a chauffeur for all my must-do activities for every day of the week.

When I was a kid we had our toys, but we also had a thing called an imagination and we could make our own fun out of very little.

So what is the problem today? Why are kids so incapable of making their own entertainment? Why are they constantly “bored” without clicking a button on a computer consol or without someone else to do their thinking for them?

Like a lot of other things, it all boils down to money at the end of the day. Now I’m not advocating poverty as a solution to the world’s ills. Far from it. I like to make money, the more the better, and the thought of being, perhaps not rich, but comfortably well off is a very nice one. But if we had to we could all make do with a lot less. And I don’t think we would be any less happier in the process.

People in other countries seem to manage quite well. And they still seem to have the mental capacity to enjoy what little they have and make their fun out of next to nothing. In other words they are happy. If things do ever deteriorate to the extent that some of the doomsday preachers are telling us, there are a lot better prepared people in the world than there are in rich countries like America, or Britain, or Germany, etc.

Think about giving your kid or nephew or niece an old oil drum from the local garbage dump next Christmas instead of an ipod touch or some other overly expensive apple. I wonder how much music and entertainment they could get out of that?

Check out the video and you will see what I mean…

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