CRAIG CONLEY (Prof. Oddfellow) is recognized by Encarta as “America’s most creative and diligent scholar of letters, words and punctuation.” He has been called a “language fanatic” by Page Six gossip columnist Cindy Adams, a “cult hero” by Publisher’s Weekly, and “a true Renaissance man of the modern era, diving headfirst into comprehensive, open-minded study of realms obscured or merely obscure” by Clint Marsh. An eccentric scholar, Conley’s ideas are often decades ahead of their time. He invented the concept of the “virtual pet” in 1980, fifteen years before the debut of the popular “Tamagotchi” in Japan. His virtual pet, actually a rare flower, still thrives and has reached an incomprehensible size. Conley’s website is OneLetterWords.com.
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A Turkish Delight of musings on languages, deflations of metaphysics, vauntings of arcana, and great visual humor.
Today — December 20, 2014

I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:

This anagram is in honor of Martha Brockenbrough's The Game of Love and Death.


> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


A Fine Line Between... (permalink)
From My Northern Exposure: The Kawa At the Pole by Walter E. Traprock, 1922.  Thanks, Jonathan Caws-Elwitt!


A printed collection of A Fine Line Between... is now available from Amazon.com.
> read more from A Fine Line Between... . . .


Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)


[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
> read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


Book of Whispers (permalink)
"I could not distinguish what he said," from The Island of Doctor Moreau by H. G. Wells, 1896.


> read more from Book of Whispers . . .


Restoring the Lost Sense (permalink)
"It had come, the thing she asked, and now she could not face it; it was too much, too terrible."  From A Charge to Keep by P. A. Blyth, 1896.

As we learn in The Cat in the Hat, when we invite a Thing in, we may end up with more than we bargained for [Thing Two, to be exact].


[Inexplicable images from generations ago invite us to restore the lost sense of immediacy.  We follow the founder of the Theater of Spontaneity, Jacob Moreno, who proposed stringing together "now and then flashes" to unfetter illusion and let imagination run free.  The images we have collected for this series came at a tremendous price, which we explained previously.]
> read more from Restoring the Lost Sense . . .


Yesterday's Weather (permalink)
"Midwinter comes tomorrow," from Songs of Three Centuries by John Greenleaf Whittier, 1877.


*Inspired by the world's only accurate meteorological report, "Yesterday's Weather," as seen on Check It Out.
> read more from Yesterday's Weather . . .


Go Out in a Blaze of Glory (permalink)


A candle from The Baby's Museum by Uncle Charlie, 1882.
> read more from Go Out in a Blaze of Glory . . .


Is Today The Day? (permalink)
20
December 2014

“Today is the day to send in that coupon.”

McClure’s Magazine, 1922

From the outrageous to the inspirational to the hilarious, here’s a daily reminder to break out of the old grind and do something unexpected, for the fun, the challenge, or the heck of it.

If today simply isn’t your day, click here to have a different day.


Music Box Moment (permalink)
Do you deserve a nostalgic breather?  Through the delicate workings of the music box, even the most dramatic compositions seem to play only for you.  You’ll hear even a very familiar piece in a whole new way.  Courtesy of home recording pioneer Ken Clinger, here’s today’s music box selection.  It will sound surprisingly good even through built-in computer speakers, and it will cut through the ambient noise of the office without being distracting.

Featured in Today’s Music Box:
Canzon e Sonate VIII (G. Gabrieli)
performed by Ken Clinger
If you could use another Music Box Moment, choose a piece:


Today’s Color Palette: Abecedarian (more info)
Abecedarian is the name of the color palette featured today, created by Faded Jeans. The palette consists of the following colors:

• hex #FFDBC4 — Cloudy Chariot
• hex #B87064 — Abecedarian
• hex #720505 — Red Queen Pincushion
• hex #543843 — Maharajah
• hex #ADC7BE — Crocodile Tears

Gazing upon this remarkable palette is like scanning a bookcase in a dream of a long-forgotten but finally rediscovered library in one's house, each colorful spine awakening cherished memories of neglected wisdom. Many thanks to Faded Jeans for this great honor.
> learn more about this palette at ColourLovers . . .


There’s a Signpost Up Ahead (permalink)
One's life path is marked by crossroads and signposts.  If you are confronted with making a choice today, perhaps the signpost displayed here will help to characterize your situation and guide you to make a decision.  If you need more guidance, refresh this page for another symbol.  If both signs are the same, perhaps any choice will lead to the same outcome.

The signs are inspired by a system of symbols entitled "Spiritual Diagnosis," developed by Dr. Robert McNary of Montana.  Dr. McNary actually creates nine-faceted mandala charts for people and interprets the symbols with uncanny accuracy.  Dr. McNary's web site is RockyMountainAstrologer.com.
> view a larger version of your signpost . . .
Yesterday — December 19, 2014

Rhetorical Questions, Answered! (permalink)
Q: If the card game Pokemon has its own theme tune, why not Go Fish?
A: Why not, indeed!  And here's our solution, with mp3 and libretto:



> read more from Rhetorical Questions, Answered! . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
From the Dept. of Life Lessons in David Lynch Films:

While fever-dreaming down your own Lost Highway, if you encounter a Mr. Eddy/Dick Laurent equivalent who offers you pornographic material, don't politely decline, because then you might learn that the Alice Wakefield in your life doubles as a Renee Madison, and you'll save yourself a headache of epic proportions.


> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
You've heard of the optional Oxford comma, but do you know about the permissive Ottoman comma?  It can be removed with surgical precision.  For example, the caption below seemingly refers to "Turkish boy women," and we must say that the blue pencil is flattering.  From Turkey and the Turks; being the present state of the Ottoman Empire by John Reid, 1840.


> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .



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