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.
March 31, 2009

Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
William Burroughs on the importance of [literally] letting go:

I saw a picture of a balloon suddenly and unexpectedly soaring and some people still holding onto the ropes connected to the balloon were suddenly jerked into the air and most of them didn't have the survival IQ to let go in time.  Seconds later they are sixty, a hundred feet off the ground.  Those who didn't let go fell off at five hundred or a thousand feet.  A basic survival lesson is: Learn to let go.  ... 

Suppose you were holding one of those ropes?  Would you have let go in time. which is, of course, at the first upward yank?  I'll tell you something interesting.  You would have a much better chance to let go in time now that you have read this paragraph than if you hadn't read it.  Writing, if anything, is a word of warning.

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


A Fine Line Between... (permalink)


Jeff writes:

Very true, and I have the fat lip to prove it.

Prof. Oddfellow quotes:

"'Frankly, this is not cojones, this is cowardice,' she exclaimed — a line that outraged straitlaced diplomats."
—Thomas Lippman, Madeleine Albright and the New American Diplomacy
A printed collection of A Fine Line Between... is now available from Amazon.com.
> read more from A Fine Line Between... . . .

March 30, 2009

I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
A fine spring day brings out droves of people, so very like a plague of beetles.
> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


A collaboration with humorist and playwright Jonathan Caws-Elwitt.

See Omegaword Jeff's whimsical take on the whole thing.
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


Ampersands (permalink)


* A manual for typographers published in 1917 acknowledged that there are many beautiful forms of the ampersand, yet it forbade their use in "ordinary book work."  Extraordinary books are another matter.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
> read more from Ampersands . . .


Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Who are funnier: Germans or Russians?

Clue:  This is according to an expert on Chinese history

Answer:  Russians.  The Germans are “less humorous than the Russians, less witty than the French.”  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Edward Harper Parker, China, Past and Present (1903), p. 323.

---

Jeff writes:

Hey, anyone can be funny when he's full of wine, or vodka.  Not so easy with a mouth full of liverwurst.  But less witty?  I think not.
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)

From the inimitable Tom Weller, author of the classic Science Made Stupid, comes this "minim" (the perfect answer to the maxim):
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .

March 29, 2009

Puzzles and Games (permalink)

Consult the daisy, customize your artwork, and save or print your result.
"He loves me not.  He loves me.  Ever sacrifice a flower, petal by petal, for love's sake?"
Sheila Den Lawrence, If I Can Help Somebody, 2005

Here's our virtual version of the age-old flower-petal game.  Pluck the daisy petals to see if the object of your affection loves you back.
> read more from Puzzles and Games . . .


Unicorns (permalink)


Calligraphic unicorns via BibliOdyssey.
> read more from Unicorns . . .


Annotated Ellipses (permalink)

 
* Ellipses don’t merely omit superfluous words or mark pauses.  Far from it!  In an astonishing number of cases, the ellipses illustrate a narrative, inviting the reader to “connect the dots.”  Learn more about Annotated Ellipses at Amazon.com.
> read more from Annotated Ellipses . . .


Puzzles and Games :: Letter Grids (permalink)
This puzzle grid asks, "Is there life on marshmallows?" The grid contains several big words. Can you find them?

• 7-letter words: 27
• 8-letter words: 7
• 9-letter words: 1

All letters in the word must touch (in any direction), and no square may be reused.

Click to display solutions
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Letter Grids . . .


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

March 28, 2009

Strange Dreams (permalink)

"Many Moons More," a painting in oil and epoxy resin by Erin Parish, 2005.
Christine shares:

I had a dream recently where I looked out of the window, and saw there were six moons, each at different phases of the moon's cycle. As I gaze up at the night sky, I see the stars stretching across it, and then bursts of colour, like celestial fireworks. I wonder how I've never seen this before, and feel filled with wonder at the world.

Christine's dream reminds us of our strange dream recounted here, and of our semicolon's dream of a double moon.

---

Samar shares:

This reminded me of the dream that I had probably last week or so.  I saw that I was on the highest building in the world and I didn't know what the time was ... evening or early morning ... it was still dark with tinge of blue ... and I saw the world round ... clouds enveloped the whole world ... and suddenly the moon in the sky fell down ... it was something that scared me a lot.
If you have a strange dream to share, send it along!
> read more from Strange Dreams . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
"If there's a problem, fill out complaint form and place it in an envelope addressed to the name of the hospital in which you were born." —Franz Kafka International, Prague's "most alienating airport"
> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Puzzles and Games :: D-ictionary (permalink)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: D-ictionary . . .


Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Did you hear about the orgy for fops?  It ended not with a bang, but a simper.
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .

March 27, 2009

Colorful Allusions (permalink)

What is green?
The grass is green.
With small flowers between.

—Christina Rossetti, ‘What Is Pink? A Rose Is Pink,’ 1872; quoted by Bruce R. Smith in The Key of Green, 2009.

* Though printed in black and white, great literature is bursting with vibrant colour. In this rebus-style puzzle, color words and parts of words have been replaced with colored boxes. Try to guess the exact hue of each. Roll your mouse over the colored boxes to reveal the missing words. Click the colored boxes to learn more about each hue. Special thanks to Paul Dean for his colorful research.
 
> read more from Colorful Allusions . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


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

March 26, 2009

Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
If a tree falls in the evening, but no one hears about it until the morning papers come out, is it pulp fiction?

(Inspired by literary rapscallion Jonathan Caws-Elwitt.)
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


Inspired by and dedicated to Jeff.

Jeff writes:

How perfectly appropriate in Light of the evening's conversation regarding lightning, and the need for protection against the Brigand that is electrical Charge.

Clearly, you are illuminated!
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


Colorful Allusions (permalink)

The colour of her costumes change from white in the carefree beginning, to grey when the forces of tragedy gather momentum, until at last sable black with all its dark meaning appears. First, in an all- black velvet dress and large black hat that she wears for her journey to the country. Then, when it seems that she is to be happy, white again in cannily picturesque lawn dresses with only a black cloak to remind you her fate is sealed; black again after her renunciation shimmering black net with sequins, but black. For her death, so that you are not too miserable and may find solace in something, a white gown, ecclesiastical in feeling with its monk’s cowl, sending you to religion, there to take courage to bear it.
—Cecilia Ager, Camille, 1937. From American Movie Critics: An Anthology From the Silents Until Now, edited by Phillip Lopate, 2006.

* Though printed in black and white, great literature is bursting with vibrant colour. In this rebus-style puzzle, color words and parts of words have been replaced with colored boxes. Try to guess the exact hue of each. Roll your mouse over the colored boxes to reveal the missing words. Click the colored boxes to learn more about each hue. Special thanks to Paul Dean for his colorful research.
 
> read more from Colorful Allusions . . .

March 25, 2009

Ampersands (permalink)


* A manual for typographers published in 1917 acknowledged that there are many beautiful forms of the ampersand, yet it forbade their use in "ordinary book work."  Extraordinary books are another matter.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
> read more from Ampersands . . .


Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Which is funnier: Tom and Jerry cartoons or ambassadors trying to out-dance and out-gobble one another at parties and conferences?

Clue:  This is according to an author of speculative fiction

Answer:  Ambassadors trying to out-dance and out-gobble one another at parties and conferences.  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Emerald, Revolution, the Greatest (2006), p. 463
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier . . .


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

March 24, 2009

Something, Defined (permalink)
INSTRUCTIONS: Click on the puzzle image below to reveal the solution!

There was something, something something / And the something will entwine / And the something, something, something / With the saintly Cybeline. (From Stacy Aumonier, 'Burney's Laugh', The Century, Vol XCII, 1916)
> read more from Something, Defined . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
"The One God can wait.  The One God is TIME.  And in Time, any being that is spontaneous and alive will wither and die like an old joke.  And what makes an old joke old and dead?  Verbal repetition."
William Burroughs, The Western Lands
> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .

March 23, 2009

Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Next election, I'm voting for Munchausen by proxy.
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


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


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .

March 22, 2009

Annotated Ellipses (permalink)

 
* Ellipses don’t merely omit superfluous words or mark pauses.  Far from it!  In an astonishing number of cases, the ellipses illustrate a narrative, inviting the reader to “connect the dots.”  Learn more about Annotated Ellipses at Amazon.com.
> read more from Annotated Ellipses . . .


The Right Word (permalink)
"No writer is above language.  Writers are language.  Each is his own language."  —Anthony Burgess, Earthly Powers
> read more from The Right Word . . .


The Only Certainty (permalink)
Certainty #44:

"You can't tell where you are, or why you're there, and the only certainty is overwhelming ambiguity."
Neil Campbell, American Cultural Studies, 2004
> read more from The Only Certainty . . .

March 21, 2009

Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)
William Keckler suggests that:

A painting is just a solidified dust bunny.

A poem is definitely a sonic dust bunny.

. . .

Dust bunnies are cosmic.

Even our Milky Way Galaxy is a big dust bunny.

See his full discussion here.

---

Monsieur Lapin de Poussiere writes:

William Keckler is a sick puppy.

And a sonic dust bunny himself.

But he loves this.
> read more from Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands . . .


Puzzles and Games :: D-ictionary (permalink)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: D-ictionary . . .


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

March 20, 2009

I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
We were gobsmacked by this astonishing review of our interactive adventure "100 Ways I Failed to Boil Water."
> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Someone Should Write a Book on ... (permalink)


This is a page from our unfinished collection of writing prompts.  All such diagrams may be found in Professor Oddfellow's Forgotten Wisdom: Volume II.
> read more from Someone Should Write a Book on ... . . .


Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Which word is funnier: child or kid?

Clue:  This is according to the book Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain

Answer:  Kid, as it is “zippier sounding”  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Christopher Hart, Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain (1998), p. 107
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier . . .

March 19, 2009

Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


 
Dedicated to Wilfried.
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


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

March 18, 2009

Something, Defined (permalink)
INSTRUCTIONS: Click on the puzzle image below to reveal the solution!

You stay here something something something... A deep voice answers, That's stupid. At this point something something someting... (From Marc Acito, How I Paid for College, 2004)
> read more from Something, Defined . . .


The Right Word (permalink)
"When a new mode of imagining erupts into literature, it dislocates the rhetoric of its time, and is of subtler stuff than that rhetoric—'the infinite arrives barefoot on this earth,' says Hans Arp."
—Christopher Middleton's introduction to Jakob Von Guten by Robert Walser

---

William Keckler writes:

I love the Hans Arp quote. Or was it Jean Arp? It must be hard to live in Alsace-Lorraine where one never knows one's true name or nationality.

Binary human beings should make a comeback.

I'm fairly certain one of my favorite poetry presses in America, Burning Deck, published Mr. Middleton's own poetry, as well as some of his translations. Unfortunately, I don't own those books, though I probably own a hundred other titles from that awesome press run by legends Keith and Rosmarie Waldrop.

I think it's cool to see you zero degrees of separation away from them with this post, Craig!
> read more from The Right Word . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


In honor of the Scottish band Simple Minds and lead singer Jim Kerr's resort hotel in Taormina, Sicily.

---

William Keckler writes:

Loves it. I've loved Simple Minds since a wee lad, and used to drive to distant towns to get imports. Imagine how different life was in the 1980s. Just unfathomable to think now. No ABE.com to find that rara avis book in fifteen minutes; we would have had to roam to the ends of the earth to find it, and poked our head in every tiny bookshop (and good look with the hours!) No illegal downloads of every song ever recorded. Go find a record ship that stocks imports or can order it for you. Wait a few weeks then drive a hundred miles. I think I can now officially be Grumpy Old Man who (Dana Carvey's character) talking about walking miles through the snow to get to school and having to eat my own arm to sustain myself on the journey.

Sparkle in the Rain was my favorite. Just gorgeous mastering, that record. But I love the earlier, avanty stuff too. Empires and Dance is an awesome album. Singles like "Changeling" have incredible quantum shifts in them!

I think they gave more than the name to my favorite band of all time, the Cocteau Twins. How can Robin Guthrie's shimmering and chiming guitar not be somewhat influenced by how Simple Minds turned the guitar into a decadent instrument.

They achieved such a "large" sound on Sparkle in the Rain, grand without slipping into the grandiose ever.

There, I've "blown your comment box all up" as the kiddies say.

Comments are supposed to be one or two sentences.

The decaying corpse of Miss Manners will surely be after me tonight like a bad Raimi flick.
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .

March 17, 2009

Unicorns (permalink)
The poet W. B. Keckler, of Sanskrit of the Body fame, called us a "logolater" (an idolizer of words), noting that logolaters "are the unicorns of the linguistic kingdom."  Keckler is qualified to make such a statement, as "poetry invented the unicorn, the centaur, and the phoenix. / Hence it is true that poetry is an everlasting Ark" (Delmore Schwartz, "The Kingdom of Poetry").

---

Double You Bee writes:

My Dear Oddfellow, I collect Tamagotchi. Nobody wants them anymore and they thrive in thrift stores like your century flower. Especially the stuffed ones. Many of them are uncircumcized and can be worked in and out of a pouch they zipper down into. Their necks are Tamagotchi prepuces. They are known for their dearth of facial features which may be, alas, the future.

Now I will believe there are unicorns.

They lay their heads upon the laps of virgins.

Why are there no unicorns near me?

"They flee from me that sometime did me seek..."

Poets invented the unicorn, the centaur and the phoenix because they are the unicorn, the centaur and the phoenix.

Alas.

Also, they exist to say alas.

Alas.
> read more from Unicorns . . .


Ampersands (permalink)


* A manual for typographers published in 1917 acknowledged that there are many beautiful forms of the ampersand, yet it forbade their use in "ordinary book work."  Extraordinary books are another matter.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
> read more from Ampersands . . .


The Only Certainty (permalink)
Certainty #43:

"Faith is the only certainty because faith involves personal commitment."
Lesslie Newbigin, A Reader, 2006
> read more from The Only Certainty . . .


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

March 16, 2009

Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Q: How is a Mob meeting like a PowerPoint presentation?

A: Frames and bullets.
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
"There is nothing more blinding that having seen the light, and nothing more tiresome than sharing it."
Anthony Marais, Delusionism
> read more from I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


 
Dedicated to Wilfried.
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


The Right Word (permalink)
"The only books I recognize as mine are those I must still write." —Italo Calvino, If On a Winter's Night a Traveler

(Did we mention what an outstanding, mind-blowing book that is?)
> read more from The Right Word . . .

March 15, 2009

Unicorns (permalink)


A detail of a design by Jordan Michael Gray.
> read more from Unicorns . . .


Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Which word is funnier: motel or hotel?

Clue:  This is according to the book Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain

Answer:  Motel, as it is “low rent.”  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Christopher Hart, Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain (1998), p. 107
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier . . .


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

March 14, 2009

Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Ironically, the Segue Inc. annual report lacked smooth transitions.
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


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

March 13, 2009

Colorful Allusions (permalink)
"We are all like snowflakes."
—comedian Lewis Black


First Australasian Antarctic Expedition, 1911-1914.  More information.
> read more from Colorful Allusions . . .


Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


 
Dedicated to Gary Barwin.
Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .


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

March 12, 2009

Annotated Ellipses (permalink)

 
* Ellipses don’t merely omit superfluous words or mark pauses.  Far from it!  In an astonishing number of cases, the ellipses illustrate a narrative, inviting the reader to “connect the dots.”  Learn more about Annotated Ellipses at Amazon.com.
> read more from Annotated Ellipses . . .


Strange Dreams (permalink)


Photo by krisatomic.
If you have a strange dream to share, send it along!
> read more from Strange Dreams . . .


A Fine Line Between... (permalink)
A printed collection of A Fine Line Between... is now available from Amazon.com.
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March 11, 2009

Ampersands (permalink)


* A manual for typographers published in 1917 acknowledged that there are many beautiful forms of the ampersand, yet it forbade their use in "ordinary book work."  Extraordinary books are another matter.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
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Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Rocket scientists: they promise you the stars.

(Dedicated to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt.)
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


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

March 10, 2009

Something, Defined (permalink)
INSTRUCTIONS: Click on the puzzle image below to reveal the solution!

In each individual experience we have an intuition of something agreeing with something, something differing from something, and something succeeding something, while in the consiousness of something we have also what has been termed consciousness of power, active and passive. (From Mind: A Quarterly Review of Psychology and Philosophy, 1878)
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Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Which word is funnier: person or guy?

Clue:  This is according to the book Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain

Answer:  Guy, as it is “funny sounding.”  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Christopher Hart, Drawing on the Funny Side of the Brain (1998), p. 107
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
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A Fine Line Between... (permalink)
A printed collection of A Fine Line Between... is now available from Amazon.com.
> read more from A Fine Line Between... . . .

March 9, 2009

I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
"In California depth is measured in feet." —Anthony Marais, Delusionism


Photo by Leo Reynolds.
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Ampersands (permalink)


* A manual for typographers published in 1917 acknowledged that there are many beautiful forms of the ampersand, yet it forbade their use in "ordinary book work."  Extraordinary books are another matter.  Our lavishly illustrated Ampersand opus explores the history and pictography of the most common coordinating conjunction.
> read more from Ampersands . . .


Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
Sleepy Hollow: the legend of a wraith horse.

(Thanks, Mike!)
> read more from Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? . . .


The Only Certainty (permalink)
Certainty #42:

"The only certainty is that where there is violence, there is always and inevitably suffering."
Andrew Gordon Fiala, Practical Pacifism, 2004
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March 8, 2009

Book of Whispers (permalink)
The great secret the hedonists keep to themselves: "that time allows pleasure, not money."  (Anthony Marais, Delusionism.)
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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The Right Word (permalink)
"All the poor alphabets by which one human being believes at certain moments that he is reading another human being."  —Italo Calvino, If On a Winter's Night a Traveler  (Highly recommended, by the way!)


Illustration by Geoffroy Tory.
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March 7, 2009

Puzzles and Games :: D-ictionary (permalink)
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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March 6, 2009

Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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Images Moving Through Time (permalink)
Athanasius Kircher invented the "polydyptic theater," "in which about sixty little mirrors lining the inside of a large box transform a bough into a forest, a lead soldier into an army, a booklet into a library" (Italo Calvino, If On a Winter's Night a Traveler).
> read more from Images Moving Through Time . . .

March 5, 2009

Did You Hear the One I Just Made Up? (permalink)
"The sun is a simile" is a metaphor, ironically.
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


 
Jeff writes:

I'm loving these little Dustbunny surrealisms! May they be fruitful, and multiply.
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March 4, 2009

Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
What is funnier than a sudden outspoken declaration of the truth?

Clue:  This is according to scholar Northrop Frye.

Answer:  Nothing.  “In our world, there is the proverb ‘children and fools tell the truth,’ and the Fool’s privilege makes him a wit because in our world nothing is funnier than a sudden outspoken declaration of the truth.”  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Northrop Frye, Northrop Frye on Shakespeare (1986), p. 111.
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
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Forgotten Wisdom (permalink)
From Prof. Oddfellow's sketchbook:


Printed collections of Forgotten Wisdom diagrams are available: Volume I from Mindful Greetings and Volumes II, III and IV from Amazon.  Selected posters are also available via Zazzle.
> read more from Forgotten Wisdom . . .

March 3, 2009

Someone Should Write a Book on ... (permalink)
"There ought to be a book dealing with the kinds of questions that come from the unique and often magical perspective of children."
E. B. Freedman, What Does Being Jewish Mean?, 2003, p. xviii.
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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The Only Certainty (permalink)
Certainty #41:

"The lonely certainty of failure."
Elaine Feinstein, Badlands, 1986
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March 2, 2009

Rhetorical Questions, Answered! (permalink)
Our burned-out flatbed scanner delayed our mention of how tickled we were to see our rhetorical question mark appear in Martha Brockenbrough's hilarious Things That Make Us [Sic].
> read more from Rhetorical Questions, Answered! . . .


I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
"The point is this: not that myth refers us back to some original event which has been fancifully transcribed as it passed through the collective memory; but that it refers us forward to something that will happen, that must happen.  Myth will become reality, however skeptical we might be."
Julian Barnes, A History of the World in 10 1/2 Chapters
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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Colorful Allusions (permalink)

by hyph-n

A slash of Blue
A sweep of Gray
Some scarlet patches on the way,
Compose an Evening Sky
A little purple slipped between
Some Ruby Trousers hurried on
A Wave of Gold
A Bank of Day
This just makes out the Morning Sky.
—Emily Dickinson

* Though printed in black and white, great literature is bursting with vibrant colour. In this rebus-style puzzle, color words and parts of words have been replaced with colored boxes. Try to guess the exact hue of each. Roll your mouse over the colored boxes to reveal the missing words. Click the colored boxes to learn more about each hue. Special thanks to Paul Dean for his colorful research.
 
> read more from Colorful Allusions . . .

March 1, 2009

I Found a Penny Today, So Here's a Thought (permalink)
Our friends at Musings from a Muddy Island found a "dangerous bank" sign in a marshland.  Wasn't it Mother Nature who said "don't put all your eggs in one basket"?


A detail of a photo by Juliet Doyle.  See full-sized image here.
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The Right Word (permalink)
"Human language disposes to contradiction." —Anthony Burgess, Earthly Powers
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Last Dustbunny in the Netherlands (permalink)


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Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier (permalink)
Which is funnier: meat or vegetables?

Clue:  This is according to a guide to drawing comics

Answer:  Meat.  (The answer is in black text on the black background.  Highlight it to view.)

Citation:  Suck School of Comic Art, Suck.com, (Nov. 7, 1997)
(Thanks to Jonathan Caws-Elwitt for inspiration!)
> read more from Puzzles and Games :: Which is Funnier . . .



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Original Content Copyright © 2014 by Craig Conley. All rights reserved.