monday search term safari LXXXVI.

how to write straight on unlined paper

Practice, or use a guide sheet.  It also helps to have Teutonic precision embedded in your DNA.

why is there a ban on selling kidneys

Because your benevolent masters have decreed that while you can go out to the liquor store and buy enough alcohol to kill off every major organ in your body in a month, you can’t offer one of your kidneys for sale to the highest bidder. Because somebody may take advantage of you, and that may harm you in the long run.

neo alphasmart file word limit

The Neo has a file size limit of about 9,000 words.  With eight file spaces on the Neo, you could write just over 70,000 words before you would have to transfer your text to a computer.

jet li lethal weapon ripping slide

Ah, yes…the source of much gun shop hysteria and many high school ninja fantasies.  To wit: this does not work, unless the guy holding the Beretta has the reflexes of a sloth on Thorazine.  You can’t get your hand on a Beretta 92 frame, work the takedown lever (which requires you to have your fingers on both sides of the frame to rotate it, as you have to press down the takedown block on the opposite side), and then rip the slide off the gun before the guy holding the Beretta shoots you in the face.  If you Google screen shots of Lethal Weapon 4, you will clearly see that Mel Gibson’s Beretta was staged for the scene—the takedown lever was already conveniently rotated into the “down” position, so all Jet Li had to do was to pull off the slide and barrel.  In real life, going all Jet Li on someone pointing a Beretta at you has a very high likelihood of you getting shot with said Beretta.

romeo and juliet pirates versus ninjas

I took that ball and ran with it about four years ago.  Still haven’t managed to get the funding for the production, though.

sex with kaylee

What is “What do 35% of male Firefly fans think about when they imagine themselves as the new crew member on Serenity?”

(The rest are pretty evenly split between Inara, River, Zoe, Mal, and Jayne.)

shelby foote’s fountain pens

Shelby Foote didn’t write his magnum multi-volume Civil War history with a fountain pen, he wrote it with a dip pen.  You know, the kind you dunk into a pot of ink to write a sentence or two before re-dunking.  Come to think of it, the best books in literary history were written with a dip quill or pen by hand, so that just goes to show that neither quantity nor quality have to suffer when you write by hand.

gurgling sounds in my macbook pro

Pick up the Starbucks venti latte you just knocked over, shut down your MacBook Pro, and pray you still have AppleCare.  The MacBook Pro does not relish the latte.

easy to use word processors for novels

The Alphasmart Neo is as easy to use as it gets.  Turn it on, and off you go.  It works like a calculator, and is about as robust.  It also saves every keystroke automatically, so you won’t have to worry about saving your stuff when you’re finished. 

haggis out of the can

There’s a place called Caledonian Kitchen that sells haggis in cans.  However, I hear the FDA has recently lifted the ban on haggis imports—apparently, they no longer regard it as a biological warfare agent.  That means we should be able to get genuine Scottish haggis at the Co-Op soon, which makes the three dozen haggis lovers in the country all giddy with exuberance.

saskatchewan prairie ice

That’s the name of my new band right there.  “Hi….we’re Saskatchewan Prairie Ice, and this one’s called Ride my Zamboni.”


And that’s the take for the week, friends and neighbors.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and drown my sorrows in cheap beer, because the proximate sporting squadron was bested by the squadron of the Others at slinging a small, circular piece of hard rubber across the ice with curved sticks.


25 thoughts on “monday search term safari LXXXVI.

  1. Jay G. says:

    Hey, there will be less-than-cheap beer tonight, my friend… 😉

    • Marko Kloos says:

      Right now it’s 50-50 odds on my being able to show up tonight. The wife’s going to try and make it home early from work, but it’s not a sure thing.

  2. LittleRed1 says:

    “Gurgling sounds in MacBook Pro?” Probably about as good a sign as when my Macbook’s hard drive started playing a tango: “tic tic – tic TIC tic; tic tic – tic TIC tic”. It’s not the BSOD – it’s the GSOD.

  3. Isaiah Kellogg says:


    And it’s probably more like 50%

  4. The rest are pretty evenly split between Inara, River, Zoe, Mal, and Jayne.

    Or all of the above. If we’re dreaming, why not be greedy?

    I’ve always found it ironic that the professional concubine is the least sexy woman on that show. (Which is, ah, praising with faint damns.)

  5. ASM826 says:

    Gurgling sounds in a MacBook…

    When your startup .wav is “They all float.”, and your screensaver is Pennywise the clown, a few gurgling sounds are to be expected.

  6. Dr. Feelgood says:

    At least they didn’t beat us in regulation. I’ve never cheered as loudly as I did when Parise banged in the tying goal.

  7. perlhaqr says:

    Does a 92FS have an out of battery safety, and can the takedown lever be manipulated while the slide is out of battery?

  8. And I believe that you also have to remove the magazine from the gun in order to pull the slide off.

  9. Tam says:

    Because your benevolent masters have decreed that while you can go out to the liquor store and buy enough alcohol to kill off every major organ in your body in a month…

    Not without selling a kidney, you can’t; not in this economy.

  10. Earl Harding says:


    I know one other haggis lover other than myself. I wonder who the third one is…?

  11. Gerry N. says:

    So then, we four dozen righteous believers in the beneficent Lord Marmite, do indeed outnumber the Heretic Haggisites.


  12. B Smith says:

    Kaylee. (I’ll be in my bunk.)

  13. Holly says:

    Me, I’d go for Wash.

  14. Joanna says:

    I used an Alphasmart once in high school, and I hated it because I couldn’t review what I’d just written without a lot of scrolling. Do they make ’em with bigger screens now? Or should I just save my shekels and get a netbook?

    • Tam says:

      SFAIK, there’s no “big screen” version. The four line display is what kills it for me, too. I’ve thought that duplicating the eMate‘s form factor would make it about perfect.

      Come to think of it, you can sometimes find eMates on fleaBay pretty reasonably.

  15. Marko Kloos says:

    It’s not a four-line display. The Neo has variable font sizes, and will do up to six lines with stock fonts, and up to eleven lines with (free) add-on fonts.

    • Tam says:

      Six lines is better, I guess, but still useless for me. Eleven lines is approaching usefulness.

      Maybe it’s too much time spent on writing poetry in my youth, but not being able to see what I’ve written drives me to distraction. Some folks can do it, but I can’t.

      Heck, it’s hard to do more than quip in this reply box. It’s too restricti

      • anonymous says:

        “Maybe it’s too much time spent on writing poetry in my youth…”


        There are those who would be interested in any that is not too personal for adult public consumption, btw, (poetry often being a diary without the schmaltz).


        • Tam says:

          It’s some awfully angsty, emo teenage pap.

          When reading it, I want to go back in time and make fun of me.

        • anonymous says:

          So, safe to say “no schmaltz”.

          Still unpossible to have spent “too much time” writing it. It was real to you at the time, and all that crap was a necessary link to get to today’s product.

          And I would bet that your English/Literature/Creative Writing teachers were in awe of that stuff. Those who can’t, teach…and they generally tend to think that depth-of-darkness shit is more than just growing pains.

          Still, some angst is better than other angst, and I for one wouldn’t mind reading anything that you care to put to print.


  16. Kevin S says:

    Zoe. Hands down.

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