Nomenclature Rule

In Life: An Unauthorized Biography, Richard Fortey documented a biologists’ rule:

The most primitive of  bacteria are known by the most wondrous jargon, mastery of which is guaranteed to cause jaws to drop at social functions, for the correct designation of many of them is ‘chemolithoautotrophic hyperthermophiles.’ Since these bacteria are only a thousandth of a millimetre long — minute rods, discs, or cocci (spheres), this affords an example of a rule well known to biologists: that the length of the description is inversely proportional to the size of the organism.

No doubt Fortey is an accomplished raconteur, but I find his written work almost unbearably wordy and have to take it in small doses.


Electricity–only a theory?

Lest we forget: science was denounced from the pulpit when it advanced a theory of the physical nature of electricity.

little girl using a hair dryer

Electricity: Goddidit!

Electricity: According to this religious textbook, no one has ever observed it.

Except for sparks. And lightning. And in Tesla machines. And as measured by voltmeters, ammeters, and ohmmeters. And as cathode rays and in cathode ray tubes, the screens of your televisions and video display monitors. And making heating elements glow in your stoves and electric heaters. And lighting up neon signs. And directly in plasma globes. But remember, children–Goddiddit!

No contradictions in the bible?

Once again I ran into someone claiming to be a Christian who had never found any contradictions or falsehoods in the bible.

No contradictions in The Bible? Excuse me while I fall about the floor laughing. Have you actually read it? The Brick Testament, in The Fate of Judas ( Matthew 27:3-4) and The Other Fate of Judas (Acts 1:15-19, points out that the New Testament gives Judas two different deaths. You can’t get much more contradictory than that.

Ovenless in Seattle

This appears to be working! I’ll have to try it one day!

trays of cookies baking on the dashboard of a closed car, seen through the windshield

Teach the controversy!

a flowered teapot floating between the Earth and the Moon

Russell's Teapot

The devil, in overalls, with a shovel, burying fossils

Fossil Evidence

Go to this delightful website and buy a T-shirt, a coffee mug, or some other item to bring a little serious  humour into your life. (Images are from WearScience.)

Church denies power of prayer

I wonder if this is true?

In a small Texas town (Mt. Vernon), Drummond’s bar began construction on a new building to increase their business.. The local Baptist church started a campaign to block the bar from opening with petitions and prayers. Work progressed right up till the week before opening when lightning struck the bar and it burned to the ground.The church folks were rather smug in their outlook after that, until the bar owner sued the church on the grounds that the church was ultimately responsible for the demise of his building, either through direct or indirect actions or means.

The church vehemently denied all responsibility or any connection to the building’s demise in its reply to the court.

As the case made its way into court, the judge looked over the paperwork. At the hearing he commented, “I don’t know how I’m going to decide this, but as it appears from the paperwork, we have a bar owner who believes in the power of prayer, and an entire church congregation that does not.”

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Random quotation

“Overheard” on a T-shirt:

What part of
Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn

don’t you understand?

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