A few people have told me they like the blog but can never find their way back here sooo heres a handy hint, you can reach this here blog just by punching or .org into your search bar! HOW AMAZING IS THAT!




Shampooinating Conditioniser

A new shampoo I was just sent in the mail yesterday bairs claim to having a ‘volumizing’ effect. Intrigued as to what exactly this scientific breakthrough in perfumed detergent is, I turned to my dictionary, but alas this word was nowhere to be seen. Likewise there doesn’t seem to be a single source on the web that will actually tell me what this word means, but I am glad to report that not only can you purchase volumizing shampoo, but also conditioner, mascara, dye, face cream, hair spray and injectable wrinkle remover. It’s possible for a product to be ‘very volumizing’ or even ‘extreme volumising’ in defiance of all adjectival precedent. Heck, one advanced college of soap even goes so far as to offer courses in hair volumizering, because apparently mere volumizing just wasn’t enough for them. Another company is kind enough to offer a shampoo that is both volumizing and clarifying, which will be a great relief for all those people who’s hair is quiet and convoluted; and yet another company offers ‘knockout volumizing makeup’ presumably for people who want to emphasize the results of their last round in the boxing ring.

I think the weirdest part is that the ingredients in this amazing new volumizing shampoo are 100% identical to those found in my previous non-volumizing shampoo, apart of course from the magical ingredient of bullshit. How weird is that!


Here’s a quick one for you!

– We actually know the last letter added to the alphabet! It was J, added around the 1500’s sometime. Before then i and j were considered the same letter.

– While probably not true, there is a popular parable that claims most clocks use the non-standard Roman Numeral IIII for the number 4 (that part is true, go look at one if you don’t believe me) because j and u were, in Roman times, represented by the letters IV, which were also coincidentally the abbreviated form of the name Jupiter, that old King of the Gods who might just rain hellfire on you for putting his name fourth on a clockface.

– Uranus was originally named Georgium, but was redubbed due to the popularity of the alternate name. The element Uranium was named as a show of support for changing the name.

– If you think English is a global language, take a moment to consider Arabic numbers. They’re pretty much globally recognised, used across every continent and major language. Heck they even use them in North Korea!

Arabic Numbers used in North Korea

Kim Jong Un crushing capitalism by using three phones simultaneously and an Apple Mac.

Thats all for now. Favorite random language facts in the comments pls and thnx.

Freedom and Freedom and Freedom For All

Reading Wikipedia in Spanish the other day (because why not) and stumbling through my usual Nick Cage inspired pidgin-translation process (primavera = ad for pasta primavera sauce = first movement of Vivaldi’s four seasons la primavera = spring) I had a sudden realisation. The Encilopdia Libre is of course the Free Encyclopedia to us who like to piss off linguists by mixing Germanic and Latin in a single sentence, but in the process of translation (libre = liberty = freedom = we have to kidnap the president of the United States) I suddenly realised that one of the most popular pieces of American rhetoric is a load of tautological nonsense, given that Freedom and Liberty are in fact, exactly the same freaking thing. Freedom just happens to be the germanic way of saying the more latinate liberty for those of us who prefer not to sound like pompous knobs.

That lovable boob of a tyrannical warmonger George Bush was, of course, the prime culprit of this literal doublespeak, but even the great orator himself, Barry Obama, recently perpetuated this gaffe when referring to punk icon Margaret Thatcher as “one of the great champions of freedom and liberty” (though to be fair this may have had more to do with padding out an otherwise rather barren list of positive traits).

Please leave your thesis for why St. Thatcher was a great reformer who I’m not worthy of even speaking the name of in the comments section below, or better yet, let us know of any circumlocutious and superfluous tautologies that you’ve run into!

An image of a picture.

Courtesy XKCD


An interesting extract from the Young Writers Guide I found while researching English anomalies:

WHO  The Old English word for who was hwa (both the h and the w were sounded). During the period 1200-1400 in the south of England, writers spelled this word with a w or wh because they incorrectly believed it belonged to the same family of words as what, where and which, and they wanted to make the language more consistent. However, the word wha was still pronounced /hwa/. From the 1400s, the pronunciation and spelling of the a changed to 0. At about the same lime, people stopped sounding the /w/ in /hwa/. So the word who was pronounced /hoo/ but still began with the letter w.

The same story is true for the words whom (Old English hwaem) and whose (Old English hwaes). For no real reason, between the years 1400 and 1600 several other English words with an /h/ sound before the letter 0 were also changed to wh- (whole, wholly, whoop). So English has this strange group of words beginning with a silent w.

Read more over at Google Books, and yes this has turned into one of those blogs, now get off my lawn.

Dr Smith of Incorrections College

Having registered a few companies in my time (don’t ask), I’ve learned that certain words and phrases are out of bounds when it comes to selling yourself in Australia. Offensive words are out (though, this being Australia, we set the bar pretty low), you can’t make it look like you’re from the government, and you can’t call yourself a university. Makes sense really. However, more notably still, you can perfectly legally set up your own ‘College of Advanced Education’, without anyone batting an eyelid.

Moreso, as you may have noticed if you’ve ever been required to fill out an Australian tax return, there are literally hundreds of titles that you can stick before your name without any legal impediment (except of course the small matter of fraud), such as ‘Father’, ‘Agent’ or my personal favorite ‘Powder Monkey‘. Most notably on that list, is the title of ‘Dr.’ which, it may surprise you to learn, is a courtesy title, like Mr, Mrs or Ms, not an honorific like Sir.

You’d probably be even more surprised to learn that in Australia and many other countries, doctors aren’t actually doctors, at least in the degree holding sense. Generally a GP will hold a MBBS, we just keep calling them doctors and they just keep letting us.

So let it be known that from this day forth, I shall be known as Dr Smith of the College of Incorrections! Actually, that does have a nice ring to it… but I’ll probably just stick with Powder Monkey for now.


P.S. Dr Cam prescribes that this article be taken with a grain of salt. He may be a fake Doctor, but he’s certainly not a fake lawer… nor a real one for that matter.