Posts Tagged ‘car’

You’re having a laugh (I hope)

Good morning all. It’s Wednesday so my guest blogger, Rambler5319, is going to take over for some humour to start your day with.

 

After the last two weeks on Genetics & Education I thought I might have a more light-hearted post this week.

Many thanks to Sam Ignarski and his E-zine Bow Wave for permission to reprint these gems taken from his website.

(For any of you with an interest in the Shipping, Insurance & Container fields, this is one website you should visit: http://www.wavyline.com/current.php)

Here we go then. Enjoy!

Walking can add minutes to your life. This enables you at 85 years old to spend an additional 5 months in a nursing home at £2500 per month.

My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was 60. Now she’s 97 years old and we don’t know where the heck she is.

I joined a health club last year, spent about £400. Haven’t lost a pound. Apparently you have to go there.

I have to exercise early in the morning before my brain figures out what I’m doing.

I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me.

I have flabby thighs, but fortunately my stomach covers them.

The advantage of exercising every day is that you die healthier.

If you are going to try cross-country skiing, start with a small country.

And last but not least: I don’t exercise because it makes the ice jump right out of my glass.
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THE FINAL WORD ON NUTRITION (IN ENGLISH)

After an exhaustive review of the research literature, here’s the final word on nutrition and health:

 

1. Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

 2. Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

 3. Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

 4. Italians and French drink excessive amounts of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

 5. Germans drink beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than us.

 CONCLUSION:

 Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.

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Four old retired guys are walking down a street in Yuma, Arizona. They turn a corner and see a sign that says,

“Old Timers Bar – ALL drinks 10 cents.”
They look at each other and then go in, thinking, This is too good to be true.

The old bartender says in a voice that carries across the room, “Come on in and let me pour one for you! What’ll it be, gentlemen?”

There’s a fully stocked bar, so each of the men orders a martini. In no time the bartender serves up four iced martinis – shaken, not stirred and says, “That’ll be 10 cents each, please.”

The four guys stare at the bartender for a moment, then at each other. They can’t believe their good luck. They pay the 40 cents, finish their martinis and order another round.

Again, four excellent martinis are produced, with the bartender again saying, “That’s 40 cents, please.” They pay the 40 cents, but their curiosity gets the better of them. They’ve each had two martinis and haven’t even spent a dollar yet.

Finally one of them says, “How can you afford to serve martinis as good as these for a dime apiece?”

“I’m a retired tailor from Phoenix ,” the bartender says, “and I always wanted to own a bar. Last year I hit the Lottery jackpot for $125 million and decided to open this place. Every drink costs a dime. Wine, liquor, beer – it’s all the same.”

“Wow! That’s some story!” one of the men says.

As the four of them sip at their martinis, they can’t help noticing seven other people at the end of the bar who don’t have any drinks in front of them and haven’t ordered anything the whole time they’ve been there.

Nodding at the seven at the end of the bar, one of the men asks the bartender, “What’s with them?”

The bartender says, “They’re retired people from Scotland, They’re waiting for Happy Hour when drinks are half-price.”

 

Needs Funds

Merci Paul Dixon

A young man was having some money problems, and needed £200 to get his car fixed and roadworthy again. But had run out of people to borrow from.

So, he calls his parents via the operator, and reverses the charge and says to his father. “I need to borrow two hundred pounds,” he says.

At the other end, his father says, “Sorry, I can’t hear you, son, I think there may be a bad line.”

The boy shouts, “Two hundred. I need two hundred pounds!”

“Sorry, I still can’t hear you clearly,” says his father.

The operator cuts in, “Sorry to butt in, But I can hear him perfectly clearly.”

The father says, “Good. YOU send him the money!”

 

Quips and Quotes

Sales clerk to customer:
“These stretch pants come with a warranty of one year or 500,000 calories… whichever comes first.”

Woman huddled under blanket on deserted, wind-swept beach to husband: “Tell me again how much money we’re saving with this off-season deal.”

Man is the only animal that goes to sleep when he’s not sleepy and gets up when he is.
–Dave Gneiser

A good answer is what you think of later.
–Sam Ewing

The closest to perfection a person ever comes is when he fills out a job application.
–Ken Kraft

No one appreciates the value of constructive criticism more thoroughly than the one who’s giving it.
–Hal Chadwick

My wife and I have structured conversations:
firstly, she gives me her opinion, then she gives me my opinion.

I’m weird, but around here it’s barely noticeable.

The mother of three notoriously unruly youngsters was asked whether or not she’d have children if she had it to do over again. “Sure,” she replied, “but not the same ones.”

Everyone should have a spouse, because there are a number of things that go wrong that one can’t blame on the government.

I accept good advice gracefully —
as long as it doesn’t interfere with what I intended to do in the first place.

I wrote this poem about 15 years ago in Ireland. In those days, that country was so strict you used to have to smuggle condoms through the airport in bags of heroin.
–Punk poet John Cooper Clarke

Never hit a man with glasses.
Hit him with a baseball bat.

Thesaurus: ancient reptile with excellent vocabulary.

There is nothing more frightening than ignorance in action. –Goethe

I like pigs.
Dogs look UP to us.
Cats look DOWN on us.
Pigs treat us as EQUALS.
–Winston Churchill

Roses are red, violets are blue, I’m schizophrenic, and so am I.
–Frank Crow

If you cannot change your mind, are you sure you have one?

Lottery: A tax on people who are bad at maths.

If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.

If things get better with age, I’m approaching magnificent!

You’re so open-minded, your brains fell out

You might as well take all of me — the parts you want aren’t removable.

I have an open mind — it’s just closed for repairs.

At least dogs do what you tell them to do. Cats take a message and get back to you.

I’ve gotta be me — everyone else was already taken.

Do not meddle in the place of dragons … you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

Resentment is like taking poison and hoping the other person dies.

We occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of us pick ourselves up and hurry on as if nothing happened.

 

Falling off my bike whilst moving at high speed

The first time I fell when moving fast, I was cycling along the side of the road through Brompton, on my way into London. I was in the cycle lane and there was a bit of a traffic jam. The cars were stationary but the cycle lane was clear so I was cycling quite fast. I was approaching a section of the road that had a Keep Clear sign, for cars to turn into a car park on my left. As I approached that section, I looked but nothing was turning so I kept cycling. All of a sudden, a big jeep thing swung quickly into the Keep Clear section and across my path into the car park. A millisecond before it would have hit me, I pulled on my brakes and skidded around so I was side on to the car. By the time it had disappeared into the car park, I had fallen sideways off the bike and skidded along the tarmac road, leaving the majority of my leg skin there. As this fall was post-cleats, the sudden pull of my body off the bike had been too fast for the shoes. I stood up, in my socks, and noticed that my cleats were still attached to the pedals on my bike! People rushed over, offering support and cursing the jeep driver. I stalked after him into the car park, in my socks, pushing my bike. I caught up with him and poked my head in the driver’s side.

“Are you going to say sorry?” I demanded.

“What’s wrong? Are you ok?” The man seemed worried.

“You just pulled in front of me and I had to brake really hard and I came off my bike.”

“O god, sorry! I didn’t see you.”

“EXACTLY!” I said, self righteously.

“But I, I didn’t see you.”

“Thats not ok. That doesn’t excuse you,” I ranted. “Why weren’t you bloody looking!?”

After a long rant, I mounted my bicycle, awkwardly because of the shoes on pedals and because I now realised that the seat had been shunted out of place, and flounced off, as best I could given the situation at hand.

The next time I fell off my bike whilst moving at speed was a similar situation. The cars were still at a set of traffic lights but the cycle lane was clear so I was cycling quite fast. A lazy mother was dropping her child off at school and instead of driving her into the school car park, she had obviously told her to jump out at the lights. The little girl, not looking of course, opened her car door just as I passed and almost knocked me out. I was thrown clean off my bike and onto the pavement. The edge of the door had ripped the skin between my little finger and ring finger apart and was bleeding all over. My arm felt broken and my leg had taken a bit of a pull in the wrong direction.

“What the fuck are you doing?!” I yelled at the little girl. In hindsight, this may not have been the best thing to say to a little girl.

Shell shocked, I struggled to my feet as the Mum came around from the drivers side and asked me if there was anything she could do.

“I think you’ve done enough!” I snapped, as I got on my bike and gingerly cycled away.

I had a bruise on my arm from shoulder to elbow which was deep purple and yellow and lasted for weeks. It wasn’t broken but I couldn’t really use it for the next two days.

Bloody kids.

My favourite Namibia memories

Making pizzas on Friday nights with one of our student’s mums.

Stuffing our faces at the Nest Hotel because we were pretty poor and ate mostly rice at home.

The time Fiona and I took a road trip round the whole country and had no radio so had to sing to each other all day.

Our comedy dog, Diaz, barking at the kids at school or following us around or weeing on the floor.

The time we were stranded in the desert with no water, no money or bank card, no ID, no suncream and no keys to get back into our car.

The time Lucy and I were painting murals on the wall in the creche where we taught and the kids started singing Atomic Kitten to us.

When I used to jump in the freezing cold swimming pool every morning at the guest house where I lived and worked in Namibia.

The time we walked out to Diaz Point, which took hours and hours, and we had three apples between us.

The time I lost control of the car and went on a little spin off the road with Fiona yelling “Steer into the spin!” and clinging onto the dashboard.

Singing the Amarula song with the kitchen staff at Grootberg Lodge.

One of my students, Zara, saying “Thank you for teaching us,” after a class.

Bungee jumping, like a loony, over the Zambezi River during a stay in Livingston.

Sleeping through the most important day in the Namibian calendar, their independence day, then making a story up for the newspaper afterwards (we ran the local town newspaper and we had to make up the main story of the whole year. Shoddy).

Climbing into the big wardrobe in Lucy’s room with our friend, Andre, to look for Narnia. We were sober, by the way.

Packing a tent, some sleeping bags, a loaf of bread, a jar of peanut butter and a knife and walking to the campsite just out of town, Shark Island, and camping for the weekend to get away from it all.

Flinging ourselves in the pool to cool down after a hot sweaty bus journey back from Victoria Falls to Windhoek.

Taking a load of disadvantaged kids away for an activity week in the desert and, among other things, teaching them how to swim.

Drinking cups of rooibos tea and watching the sun set over the Atlantic ocean and the clouds and sky turning pink and purple and orange.

Fiona and I going to the coolest bar in town, Rumours, and graffitiing our names behind the bar.

Cutting my own hair because I had no money for hairdressers.

Going out to an old abandoned town in the desert with our friend, George, and him giving us Namibian names. Mine was Naufiku, which means ‘born in the evening.’

Fiona chucking a glass of triple shot Jaegermeister and coke on a car.

Going to badminton club on Tuesdays and being rubbish at it.

Danda and me and Hide And Seek

So, to understand the fabulousness of this story, I need to tell you about the history of Hide And Seek in our house. For some absurd reason, whenever I hear Danda’s key jangling as he approaches the door to come home, I have to hide. I have to. It’s like a compulsion. I can’t help it. Sometimes if there’s not time for me to find a real hiding place I’ll just throw a coat over my head and crouch down in the middle of the floor. On times like these, Danda play-acts not knowing where I am, then I leap out and yell ‘Boo!’ and he asks if the joke is over now and can we please be grown ups.

But so overwhelming is this compulsion to hide, like a small child, that I have hid when I thought I heard his car arriving back. I was so sure it was him that I quickly nipped out of the back door, holding it gently closed. And I waited. I listened. I waited. And I shivered a little, for it is cold in that little section of the house, which is basically like being outside.

Inevitably, he did not come in because it was not his car I had heard.

Sometimes I am upstairs when I hear him come in so I dive under the bed. Danda often forgets about me hiding and when he sees I am not downstairs, he simply puts the kettle on and sits down to watch the news. At times like these, I have to call him to remind him. The phone call usually goes something like this:

Danda: “Hello?”
Me: “Come and find me!”
Danda: “O! I thought you’d gone down to the shop.”
Me: “….noooo. Come and find me.”

He will then come upstairs and find me and we turn back into adults and continue our evening.

Well tonight, ladies and gentlemen, tonight I excelled myself. When I heard Danda approaching the front door, I ran into the front room and looked around. I’ve done every hiding place at least twice but this evening I hid somewhere new. I squeezed a little space inbetween the computer desk and the big comfy chair and I crouched in there silently.

Danda came in, looked in the kitchen and front room and didn’t see me and, remembering my recent phone call, checked upstairs, under the beds and in the bathroom. Upon not finding me, he thought I must have popped to the shop and re-entered the front room to turn the fire on.

It was at this point, with his guard lowered and not expecting me to be home, that I chose my moment and emerged from between the furniture shouting “BOOOO!” like a madwoman. I must confess, the longer he went on without finding me, the more my excitement built. I couldn’t wait to jump out and surprise him! Hence my almost-scream of “Boo!” when I saw my moment arrive.

Danda gave a startled “Aah!” then clutched at his heart and sat down heavily on the sofa laughing and just about staving off the heart attack from shock that threatened to take hold.

It took about twenty minutes of breathlessness and sitting quietly to recover from this one.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what keeps me happy day to day. Little pockets of fun such as this. I derive immense joy from a successful hide and seek escapade and am thinking about putting it on my CV as a ‘life skill.’

Try it one day. I dare you. When you hear your nearest and dearest fumbling about at the lock with their keys, just run and hide somewhere. Anywhere will do. It doesn’t have to be especially inventive. I go through long periods of hiding in the same place every day. It doesn’t matter. It’s the potential for fun which counts.

My first outing after passing my driving test

Passing my driving test was a bit of a task to start with. I had been getting loads of lessons and had a date booked and was as ready as I’d ever be.

My driving instructor and I drove to the test centre, signed in and were told to sit and wait. While we waited, a lady came over and asked to see my certificate to prove I’d passed my theory test. You’re not allowed to take your practical test until you’ve passed your theory test. And you’ll never guess what. I didn’t have my certificate with me. I had no idea I was supposed to bring it. There were 20 minutes until the test, it would take more than that to rush home, get my certificate and come back.

So I couldn’t take the test and went home quite annoyed. It cost quite a lot of money to book a test. I booked another one at the next available date, three months away. I didn’t get anymore driving lessons in those three months as they were expensive and I was already ready for the test. I just drove with a qualified driver, every so often, so as not to forget how to do things.

Inevitably, my second test came up, I hadn’t been driving enough, I did an awful job and failed it.

I booked myself in for a third time. This time, I got some driving lessons aswell, to keep it up properly. And I took test number three and I passed. Woop woop!

I got home, all excited, and decided to drive to my friend, Ruth’s house, by myself, to celebrate passing my test. She only lived a few minutes away so I was there pretty quickly. She lived on a hill so as I found a spot to park in, I needed to be doing a hill start in reverse to get into the space.

I focussed on the car behind and making sure I didn’t hit it and I pressed on the gas pedal quite hard.

Up, up, up, gently, don’t hit the car, turn in, in, but not too far, don’t hit the curb, a bit more gas, up, up, up, don’t hit the car….

CRUNCH.

No. I had not hit the car. How stupid do you think I am?!

I had hit the massive great lamppost, which was in front of the car.

So there’s a lamppost in front of the car. I’ve reversed into the lamppost. That’s the first thing I have achieved as a fully qualified driver.

I looked around, hoping no-one had seen. My friend, Ruth, was walking toward me. She had been watching me the whole time, admiring her new driving-license-wielding friend, thinking of the adventures we would have, escaping in a car. She had seen the ridiculous avoid-the-car-but-hit-the-lamppost manoeuvre.

We inspected the back and, to be honest, there were quite a few scrapes and scratches already there. So what looked like the one I had probably done just kind of blended in. Kind of.

And that is the first thing I did after passing my driving test. Maybe it’s a good job I don’t drive anymore…?

The time I told a man off in the street

For a few years, I volunteered at a legal charity in London. It was on a road with lots of important looking buildings that were law firms and chambers and inns of court, etc. All very suits-and-ties. It’s a quietish road during the day as the solicitors and barristers are busy in their offices squirreling away. I worked at a desk which faced out onto this street.

One day I heard some people talking loudly. I leaned over to see what was going on. A cyclist was getting a telling off from two guys in suits standing next to a very flash car. I had cycled in that day so was inclined to be on the cyclist’s side, if there were sides to be had in this discussion. As it went on, the two gentlemen from the swanky car just got louder and the cyclist, if he was responding at all, was very quiet. I couldn’t hear the exact words they said so gave up being nosey and went back to my work. I noticed the cyclist pedalling off.

Back to work, thought I. I can still hear their voices. O well, block them out. Concentrate. Concentrate on this filing…. I can’t. They’re getting louder and louder. I can hear actual words. I’m on the second floor up, what can they be shouting about so loudly that I can hear them all the way up here?

I peered out of the window. They were shouting, one of them particularly, about the cyclist. Still. Just mouthing off about how much they thought he was an idiot.

Where do these people think they are?! You’re on a quiet street surrounded by offices full of suited educated men and women who do not conduct themselves in this manner. These loud men had suits on and a flash car. So I didn’t understand why they were acting like idiotic students. Didn’t they get it? I became incensed.

I couldn’t work because I was so distracted by them. Everyone was. It went on for fifteen long minutes. They must have honestly thought that everyone wanted to hear their inane nonsense.

“I’m going to tell them to shut up,” I announced, to questioning looks from my colleagues.

Down the stairs I went, out the door and headed over to them. They smiled, probably thinking I was going to tell them how impressed I was with their shoutyness and could they please take me for a ride in their expensive car because I’m a woman and therefore don’t need any more form of stimulation than a fancy car.

I did not ask them to take me for a ride in their fancy car. O no.

“Can you please keep your voices down, we’re all trying to work,” I said, to two stunned faces. I waited, no response….

“O, and you’re just assuming that it’s us?!” the loud one said finally, in a confrontational manner. He was starting down that road, you know, the one which consists of a lot of ‘you can’t prove it was me’ and ‘you’re jumping to conclusions because I’m young and have a flash car.’ He looked ready for a verbal fight and gave me his best ‘you don’t know what you’re talking about’ face.

“No. I know it was you. Because that’s my window (I gestured to my window) and I’ve been watching you for the last fifteen minutes,” I said.

Silence.

More silence.

And then I flounced. I flounced away. Because I could. Because they had just been royally told off by a girl.

And that is the story of when I told a man off in the street.

The Strange English Language

The following is a guest blog from RuthJ at caderyan.com and was submitted to me via myblogguest.com. Enjoy!

 

The English language is a strange little thing. It contains the most words out of any other language, and though it is widely spoken throughout the world, it is actually one of the most difficult languages to learn.

Most other languages have rules associated with why the language is the way it is. Sentences are laid out to make sense and phonetics are easier to dissect. In English, there is no rhyme or reason to the way certain things are spelled or pronounced, and some of the words we use today don’t make sense as to why.

Languages were invented, which leaves it susceptible to error and confusion, and the English language is no exception. If we could go back in time when the English language was being created, we would have plenty of questions.

Did you ever notice that certain words would make more sense if used correctly with its counterparts? For example:

1. Why do we drive on parkways, yet park on driveways?

2. Why do we use garment bags to pack suits, yet we use suitcases to pack garments?

3. How come we play at a recital, yet we recite a play?

4. How come when we move something via a ship it’s called cargo, yet when we move something by car it’s called a shipment?

5. Why do we call people who ride bikes cyclists, but people who ride motorcycles bikers?

For the English language to make perfect sense, you would think that we would drive on driveways and park on parkways and that we would call those who ride bikes bikers and those who rode motorcycles cyclists. Instead, we do things backwards.

Then there are those items that involve numbers that simply don’t make sense. For example:

1. Why is it called a pair of pants when you only get one?

2. Why is first-degree murder worse than third-degree murder, but first-degree burns are less serious than third-degree burns?

3. Why do we call it a television set if we only get one?

We also have words that follow one rule but not for others. For example:

1. How come the day breaks but never falls, yet night falls but never breaks?

2. How come a king rules a kingdom, but a queen doesn’t rule a queendom?

And then there are just certain questions we wish we had answers to, including:

1. Why does the word lisp have an s in it? Was it some type of cruel joke?

2. How come there is no synonym for the word synonym?

3. Why are deer and moose the same for both singular and plural versions?

4. What was the purpose of spelling read and read or lead and lead the same but making them have two different phonetics?

5. How come you can turn a light on, off or out, but you can’t turn it in?

6. How can you be head over heels? Aren’t you already head over heels? Shouldn’t it be heels over head?

7. Why can -ough be pronounced seven different ways?

Unfortunately we may never know the answer to some of these questions, and the English language will continue to be a mystery to everyone.

 

Robert Hunt is a writer and linguist. He has studied the forms and details of many different languages. Robert has recently enrolled in Accent Pros accent classes to learn how to pronounce words with different accents.