Monday, June 26, 2006

Me and my dictionary

I've been having fun with my Treo 650, which does about everything. Lately I downloaded the Oxford American Dictionary onto it (My favorite dictionary!) and I've been looking up random words I see as I go around town.
The first thing that struck me was car names. There is a Cadillac SUV called the "Escalade". Typing that into my handy dictionary gave me the following definition:

Escalade: n. historical. the scaling of fortified walls using ladders, as a form of military attack

Did they know what they were naming their car?!?! What does that have to do with a Cadillac SUV? The imagination can run wild trying to fit those two things together!

So I started looking at cars more and really noticing their names. And what did I see? They've started naming cars after colors! There's the Sienna, and the Cobalt... Someone in the car world must've had a nostalic moment and broken out their old box of Crayolas.

I like to think of my car, the Maxima, as being named after a gladiator.

Although I do try not to drive like I'm in the Arena.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Harvey and Sheila

This is one of my most favorite songs. The lyrics are by Allan Sherman and it is sung to the tune of "Hava Nagila"

Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Oh, the day they met.
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
No one will forget.

Harvey's a CPA.
He works for IBM.
He went to MIT and got his PhD.
Sheila's a girl I know,
At B.B.D.& O.
She works the PBX,
And makes out the checks.

Then - came - one great day when
Harvey took the elevator,
Sheila got in two floors later,
Soon they both felt they were falling,
Everyone heard Sheila calling,
"Ring the bell," But they fell.
Harv and Sheila fell in love.

Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Chose a wedding ring.
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Married in the spring.

She shopped at A & P.
He bought a used MG.
They sat and watched TV on their RCA.
Borrowed from HFC,
Bought some AT&T,
And on election day, worked for JFK.

Then - they - went and got a
Charge-A-Plate from R.H. Macy,
Bought a layette, pink and lacy,
Then they had twin baby girls,
Both with dimples, both with curls,
One named Bea, one named Kay,
Soon they joined the PTA.

Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Moved to West LA.
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Harvey and Sheila,
Flew TWA.

They bought a house one day,
Financed by FHA.
It had a swimming pool, full of H2O.
Traded their used MG
For a new XKE.
Switched to the GOP - that's the way things go.

Oh - that - Harvey he was
Really smart, he used his noodle.
Sheila bought a white French poodle,
Went to Europe with a visa,
Henry's rich, they say that he's a
VIP! This could be -
Only in the USA!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Player Piano Code

As long as "The Da Vinci Code" is so popular right now, I thought I'd piggy back a story onto that popularity and get some sales.
It's called "The Player Piano Code". It's about New Orleans (also Tie-in to Katrina which is still in the news a year later- see, I know how to sell stories). A player piano roll has turned up with a lot of additional flourishes which weren't in any of the original sheet music by the author. Everyone thought it was just the musician being fancy- until one mathemetician who was looking over the roll discovered very strangely mathematical patterns in the extra flourishes. He runs it through some mathematical calculations and uses a computer to help him and finds--- a code revealing deep secrets that lead him to the old voodoo creole superstitions! They turn out not to be such susperstitions after all, but a clever camoflauge. Where this leads is a mystery I won't tell- it'll spoil the book! But let's just say it winds and intertwines from New Orleans to Timbuktu, to Morroco and Europe, and even to ancient codes buried in the music of Johann Sebastian Bach! (ha- you THOUGH his music was a little too mathematical to just be entertainment, right?)
Further installments may be coming...