Tuesday, 30 October 2007

Haikus aren't just for the Samurai

In an attempt to bring back haikus from the clutches of Japanese nobility and unclean intelligentsia, I've written some Haikus that can be used in more day-to-day situations:

snt u ths as txt.
Reed it on yr mobile fone
and learn to spell, dick.

Thought that this might help
to cushion the blow for you.
You're fat so you're dumped.

This ticket is for
thinking your hazard lights are
park anywhere lights

Happy birthday mate
here's a haiku `cause I'm poor
Where is the cake at?

I've heard that women
think that haikus are sexy
Can we go doink now?

An in depth report in to choking hazzards.

As part of a group study into choking on food (yes, an entire group of people and by that I mean two of us), we would like to release this important report into foods that are preferable when choking entitled: "What food is best to choke on?"

Firstly may I state that this study is based on theory. No one has choked on a foodstuff and had an enjoyable enough experience to tell me about it. Then again, I haven't asked anyone. Secondly, choking on a pound of cocaine does not count as "best to choke on". By best we mean most likely food to allow for survival, not which stuff will give you the widest girthed smile. And besides, cocaine is not a foodstuff.

So on with the study. First coming to mind is the humble olive. It has a built in safety device of having a hole all the way through. The problem is that the olive must be lined up correctly for its safety feature to work correctly. Given that in both axiseseses (how do you make that word a plurelacise?), there is only about 20 of the 90 degrees that are useful to breathing, so that’s 2/9 * 2/9 = 4/81. Not great odds.

Perhaps something that cannot cause a full obstruction. Polos? I've heard stories of St. John's ambulance (formally "Next stop, Heaven"), giving polos to heart attack victims. Apparently there is some lost panacial powers that Polos possess, they just forgot to tell anyone else. These sweets certainly would allow for better breathing, and would essentially dissolve over time.

Looking at the dissolving area, perhaps we want something that simply wouldn't survive long. Space dust? Painful, noisy and quite funny. But the embarrassment would be worth it.

Looking in to a more fruit/farm based view, is my associate Big Dave:

I would have to say something like bread, because of its ability to become mushy very quickly and as thus break apart easily, but hmm, would it stick inside because it can get sticky when its like that, very viscous….

Hmm, nothing crumbly because of flaking factor,

So in the report so far we have considered viscosity and flaking as factors that could prove troublesome, now pain might be a burgeoning incentive to work harder to dislodge, something like a chilli, but on the same hand could also damage the throat. All in all, we need a substance that is viscous enough not to dislodge the wrong way but not too viscous to become stuck and something that won’t crumble causing complications. Also pain becomes a factor in incentive but not in what makes it a good one to choke with. Now olives may prove to be magical food stuffs when it comes to choking but also similar items.

Blueberries, small and smooth, providing less friction but also may prove to be much too small and pose a risk in obvious size areas, now grapes may have a smoother skin but are about 5 times the size of a blueberry, the humble raspberry would seem good at first due to its hole and as thus the ability to draw breath, but at the same time it’s increased surface area due to it’s nodule like creation create friction, combined with the hole, which would also function as an easy escape for air during the dislodging procedure would possibly prove troublesome.

In all fruit seems to be ruled out due to an inconsistency in design and aerodynamics. We are in essence looking for something that allows passage of air from one direction whilst blocking it from the other, whilst also combining the above factors of viscosity, smoothness and lack of pain to an extent. I think some sort of hinged / valve operated, mild chilli the size of a raspberry would be the ultimate in ease of choking (is there such a thing O_o)

But failing this I believe the humble egg probably fried at a push scrambled (not a whole boiled one). The reason being that although not being a pleasure to look at afterwards (Although it doesn’t like part of your lung) it has a moveable side, a very flexible side if you will thus allowing the passage of air on the gentle in breath but will also provide adequate surface area for the powerful out breath! It also has viscosity enough to resist falling further into danger and also provides adequate lubrication for the out journey.




So that’s a piece of fried egg then.

Monday, 22 October 2007

Chicken and mushroom slice eating practices: A follow up report.

In my initial report I uncovered an unknown habit of orientating my chicken and mushroom slices so that they were chevron down (or "robus-originalus style"). This, I wasn't sure, my have been related to some evolutionary style learning based on bad experiences leading to the subconscious orientating of this particular midday snack.

I've now been fortunate enough to witness the disastrous events that follow a chevron away (the so called "diablos-sinistirus" style) positioned eating style. They were captured on camera phone shortly after the event, so that we can now bring these results to you as firm evidence of their occurrence, and how they seductively point towards a Darwinian theory of eating practice.

The result: As a left sided bite pulled away the chicken and pastry, the force quickly dissipated in to the higher up pastry. The higher up pastry (the pastry plateau), had little or no structural integrity in that direction, so swiftly it came away towards the eater. Thankfully my mind was on the food and not my work at the time, so my quick reactions allowed for a rapid cessation of eating and averted a culinary disaster. Next time I might not be so lucky.

Friday, 12 October 2007

Hangover - the diary

Good afternoon all. I'm feeling much better than I was about 5 hours ago. For those who haven't had a hangover for a while, I've kept a diary for this morning, so you too can understand why we should never drink to excess and expect no consequences.

9:10 coffee
9:15 nausea
9:35 ate mcCoys cheddar and onion crisps
9:40 sweating
9:47 starting eating chewing gum
9:59 headache
10:15 felt tired, put kettle on
10:20 worried about coffee tasting like mint, so got a glass of water.
10:32 tried to hold work-based conversation. Struggled.
10:56 weird cramp in legs
11:02 sweating
11:20 recollections of last night and oversleeping this morning is making me feel very guilty and remorseful.
11:48 realised my hand can't write properly.
12:03 stomach making lots of noise.
12:20 ate food. Feeling better
13:11 moved from coffee to tea
13:12 eating Jammie dodgers, feeling the sugar working.

Thursday, 11 October 2007

The story of the sun and the wind

The sun and the wind were watching a man in a long coat when the wind said to the sun "Hey, I bet you that I get his jacket off". The sun, un-phased by the apparent brag replied "No you couldn't, but I bet I can!". And so the challenge was on. Firstly the wind tried. He huffed and puffed as much as he could at the man, but the man simply pulled his jacket around him as much as possible and clung on tightly to it.

"Ha!" said the sun, "now it is my turn", and the sun shone down on to the man. The man, now sweltering in heat, removed his jacket. The sun had won.

This is a dangerous children's story. I was told it in primary school and it has stuck with me. What I realise now, that I didn't at the time, was that it wasn't just suggesting that to get what you want, you need to bribe rather than blackmail, instead what it actually was saying to me and my 5 year old brain, was that to be able to get someone to let go of something, you should not try and pull it from them. To do this only demonstrates your desire to own it rather than them. Instead, by destroying the reason for them to have it, you are devaluing the item. Once they have little regard for it, they will be quicker to part with it. The sun also improved his chances by letting the wind go first, thus his change to warmth would have clashed with the man's body's ability to regulate temperature and caused him to make rasher decisions regarding his apparel.

So remember children, if you want something from someone else, first highlight a reason for them to have it, and then destroy the reason, finally giving them the chance to take it off their hands for a lower than reasonable price because of its now less worthwhile use.

I love children's stories