They say you learn something new every day.

Archive for June, 2012

Cleese makes four points here of ways to aid…

Cleese makes four points here of ways to aid creativity:

  1. Time
  2. Space
  3. Confidence
  4. Humour

I think the first two are the key points. Creativity is linked to playfulness, or what he calls “the open mode”, and you need to set time and space aside for that.


“Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana”

“Time flies like an arrow; fruit flies like a banana”

Via Wikipedia (or all places).

This made me chuckle

Knowing it all (12/06/2012)

Probably my favourite book so far this year was AJ Jacobs The Know-it All. A really funny, well written book that made me chuckle and rush to read it. I couldn’t wait to get back to reading it.

I didn’t know just how many books: about five hundred. The man wrote five hundred books. I don’t think I’ve written five hundred Post-it notes. He wrote so many books, even his biographers are reduced to the vague “about five hundred.”

 I forget who this is about, but it’s a really good observation.

My father is proud of his footnotes. A few years ago, he broke the world’s record for most footnotes in a legal article, coming in at an impressive 1,247. Soon after that, a California legal professor topped my dad’s record with 1,611 footnotes. My dad didn’t stand for that. He wrote another legal article and just crushed his opponent. Squashed him with 4,824 footnotes, ensuring his status as the Wayne Gretsky of footnotes.

Someone else with an unusual father. It’s becoming a bit of a pattern, I think.

Well, at least he didn’t supervise irrigation schemes, that slacker. Oh wait. My mistake. He was also a supervisor of irrigation schemes.

This made me chuckle, coming at the end of an extraordinarily long list of achievements.

Papers (11/06/2012)

I read The Rachel Papers by Martin Amis a while back. I’m not really sure how well it’s dated. Not well, I think. It feels very 70s, and some parts of it, while shocking at the time, are just laughable now.

I found Amis’s style a bit difficult too, but there were some good bits.

Kleenex well away from the bed: having them actually on the bedside chair was tantamount to a poster reading The big thing about me is that I wank a devil of a lot.’

 I’m not sure there’s much I can say about this, except it made me smile.

Later, instead of going to sleep, I stared at the ceiling all night and got a lot of coughing done.

I think I’m getting a soft spot for describing things in a strange way – or using a turn of phrase usually used for something else. 

Numbers (10/06/2012)

I recently read How Did You Get This Number by Sloane Crosley (Or, as I said in my head each time I read it, Sloane Crosby).

I’m not entirely sure where I found it, but I quite enjoyed it:

Mom eyed me suspiciously for days, morphing into a one-woman Scotland Yard, marching into my bedroom with a fistful of lint from the dryer to demonstrate that I had mysteriously washed all the towels

The mundaneness of this made me chuckle, along with the lack of motive. There’s nowhere for her mum to come with the evidence once she’s gathered it.

Another thing about having the village idiot camped out in half your brain is that the other half is forced into some resourceful public-relations work. At school, if someone asked me what time it was, the better-brain half would put its hand over the lesser half’s mouth, and I’d say my watch was broken.

There’s a nice bit of personalising the brain here, but the pay off at the end is good too.

I was going through a phase where I felt uncomfortable when people could hear me going to the bathroom. I’m still going through it, really. 

I love the misuse of the word “phase” here. It sets it up well in the first sentence before undermining it.

It was a gateway carpet. 

Out of context this doesn’t make much use, but the switching of “drug” for “carpet” here really made me chuckle.

Planning Kitchens (09/06/2012)

I’m planning a new kitchen at the moment. It’s rather a different skill from my normal activities, but actually, when you start getting into it, you begin to see a lot of overlap. It’s an area with lots of gaps in my knowledge too.

Planning (08/06/2012)

I need to make sure I write more notes and more detailed plans.

Presents (07/06/2012)

I bought L a little gift today. I need to remember to buy more little gifts for L.

You don’t learn something every day (06/06/2012)

I’ve realised, actually, that I don’t learn a new thing every day.

Do what you’re good at (05/06/2012)

I’ve realised sometimes I try to do to much. I need to concentrate on fewer things.

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