Tag Archives: sharks

A Christmas Wonderland. . . Of Blood!

by Richard

I get the feeling that a snowman took his life in his own sticks if he ever went to Calvin’s neighborhood.

Calvin and his pet tiger, Hobbes, were known for winters spent turning the traditional three-ball snowman into something more akin to a horror movie extra set. There were snowmen run over by cars, dismembered, hung by ropes from trees, chased by sharks and many other horrible, wonderful fates.

That all ended, of course, when Bill Watterson, Calvin and Hobbes’ creator, decided to call it quits. I can’t tell you dudes how much I miss that comic strip. It was warm, funny and amazingly well-drawn.

It turns out, I’m not the only one who misses Calvin and Hobbes. And, fortunately, some of the folks who miss them, also are creative in theirownselves. These dudes sat down and crated an amazing little video mash note to Bill Watterson. You really need to see this.


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Freaky Friday: You Smell Ugly*

by Richard

Humans (thankfully for those of us who live in a household full of teenaged boys) have a really lousy sense of smell. I mean, sharks can smell a drop of blood a mile away. Bloodhounds can track a days-old trail through swamps and over rivers. We can’t even tell who cut the cheese in a crowded room. Or whatever.

Turns out, that might be a bit of a blessing.

Especially if you’re not Brad Pitt. And, other than the Pitt-ster himself, who is?

What I’m talking about this is, of course, science! According to some relatively recent research, smelling bad makes you look ugly. Sort of.

“We report an experiment designed to investigate whether olfactory cues can influence people’s judgments of facial attractiveness. Sixteen female participants judged the attractiveness of a series of male faces presented briefly on a computer monitor using a 9-point visual rating scale. While viewing each face, the participants were simultaneously presented with either clean air or else with 1 of 4 odorants (the odor was varied on a trial-by-trial basis) from a custom-built olfactometer. We included 2 pleasant odors (geranium and a male fragrance) and 2 unpleasant odors (rubber and body odor) as confirmed by pilot testing.”

Firstly, rubber smells bad? News to me, I guess.

More importantly, though, what the researchers found was that, in the presence of the unpalatable odors, participants found the pictures of the various men to be significantly less attractive.

“The results showed that the participants rated the male faces as being significantly less attractive in the presence of an unpleasant odor than when the faces were presented together with a pleasant odor or with clean air (these conditions did not differ significantly). These results demonstrate the cross-modal influence that unpleasant odors can have on people’s judgments of facial attractiveness. Interestingly, this pattern of results was unaffected by whether the odors were body relevant (the body odor and the male fragrance) or not (the rubber and geranium odors).”

This has a lot of implications, especially for the aforementioned teenaged boys.

Sarcasmo is a young dude who is aggressively anti-popular. What I mean by that is that, rather than take a chance at rejection, he makes sure to indulge in activities or behavior that will make sure folks don’t think he’s trying to be popular. That way, if someone doesn’t like him, it’s not him they don’t like, but, rather, the behaviors in which he’s consciously engaging.

Which is my long-winded way of saying we have to make sure he wears deodorant. When we forget to remind him. . . Well, let’s just say even we, as parents, don’t want to hug the young dude.

Anyway, I think this might prove to be an actual incentive for him to wear the deodorant more often. And maybe even a touch of cologne. Smell better and folks think you’re better looking. A pretty easy bit of advice to follow.

The only question now is if it will actually penetrate that teenage force field of “I know everything and you’re an idiot” surrounding the young dude.

*Notice the difference if I’d put a comma between smell and ugly. Were it there, I’d be calling you (well, not you) ugly. No comma and I’m saying it’s an ugly smell. Okay, maybe I shouldn’t be reading grammar books for fun.

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I Used To Walk Uphill To School. . . Both Ways

by Richard

My little dudes know I’m kidding, most of the time, when I talk about what I had to do “back when I was your age.” That includes walking to school uphill five miles in the snow — both ways — and having to dodge alligators and sharks.

I knew I was making stuff up, but I thought I was making up stuff that couldn’t be topped by the real world. Turns out I was wrong.

In Colombia, about 40 miles southeast of the country’s capitol Bogota, lies the Rio Negro river. Roaring through the bottom of a series of canyons more than 1,300 feet below the mountain tops, this river and its canyon make it difficult for people living there to get to the outside world.

Doesn’t matter though. No matter how difficult, little dudes and dudettes still have to get to school. And they don’t have cars or airplanes. What they do have is an excess of guts and very strong stomachs.

No freakin' way. These folks are nuts.Yeah. This is what the kids do every morning and afternoon to get to and from school, ride a quarter-mile long zip line.

That’s not the best part, though. The best part is what happens to kids who have to go to school, but are too young to be trusted to ride the zip line by themselves.

Yeah, that's a little dude in that sack. Looks like what I used to do to that loud neighbor kid. Um, forget I said that.

They put the younger kid in what amounts to a burlap sack, tie ’em on and then let them fly. Can you imagine that? Being stuffed into a burlap sack, tied to a metal wire and then shoved out into open space?

Next time the little dudes complain about having to take the bus to school, I’m showing them this.

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