As if there’s not series on Learn Fun Facts, I decided to start another one. To tell you the truth, I’m still not sure what in the world should I should write here. So any suggestions are welcome. I suppose that I’ll just see how this series will develop.
What’s up with That?
When WhatsApp popularized voice messaging, I thought that it was cool since I don’t have to call someone if I want to leave him a short voice message. However, I’m now finding this feature annoying. In Hong Kong, it’s now normal to see people sending voice messages everywhere. This is fine but what irritates me is when they receive voice messages.
In most cases, the receiver’s phone volume is turned to the max so people from a few blocks away can hear it. It’s all right if it happens only once, but I’m not that fortunate. Usually, this would be followed by the receiver shouting at his smartphone, mimicking the phone’s deafening sound. Of course, there would be a reply with the same intensity of loudness. And you guessed it, the receiver would shout his reply once more.
They can be more galling than the screeching of an obstreperous car alarm. Couldn’t anyone of them just call the other as it looks like that they have a lot to talk about? It seems to me that they are broadcasting their uninteresting conversation to an uninterested crowd.
A Funny Accounting Joke
An accountant friend of mine told me the following accounting joke (paraphrased in my own words):
A father, who happens to be a CPA too, likes to read fairy tales to his four-year-old daughter. One night, he decided to read Cinderella to her for the first time. His daughter found the story intriguing especially the part where the pumpkin turns into a golden coach. She then said, “Dad, when the pumpkin turned into a golden coach, would it be classified as a taxable income or a capital gain?”
I found this joke hilarious but this may only be due to my sick sense of humor. My advice to Cinderella is she should pay the sales tax on the pumpkin before it turns into a golden coach. Though I am sure that the CPA’s daughter was already aware of this.
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When a man you like switches from what he said a year ago, or four years ago, he is a broad-minded person who has courage enough to change his mind with changing conditions. When a man you don’t like does it, he is a liar who has broken his promises.
— Franklin P. Adams, Nods and Becks, 1944
A Corporate Bestiary: Or, How to Spot the Animals in your Organization by William Zikmund (1986)
I recently found this in a second-hand bookshop. The title looks interesting so I picked it up though I didn’t expect that much from it. So, I was surprised that the humor on some items is actually good. In some parts, the humor seems contrived but it’s okay as there are also parts that entertained me.
The book describes the “animals” that you can find in the corporate world. Here are some examples:
The Up-and-Comer scrambles on the fast track. Desperately and aggressively seeking the upper echelon, its only movement is upward. Climbing to the top is the be-all and the end-all of its existence. Anything goes. Fiercely competitive, it may devour its peers. In its quest for preeminence, the Up-and-Comer displays great ingenuity to hide its own weaknesses behind a Subordinate’s talent. Survival is a finely honed skill. Attacking easy prey is the fastest way for the ruthless to get ahead.
The Obfuscating Bureaucrat wallows in mud and prefers murky water for its buck-passing ritual. This instinctual behavior, performed so that the public and press are unaware of the true nature of the Bureaucrat’s actions, assures one that a manager is not confused with a Bureaucrat. Bureaucrats spend most of their day reporting on what they are doing, rather than doing anything. Its mumbled verbiage (also called gobbledygook) is difficult to decipher. However, after years of difficult study, scholars now agree that communication among Bureaucrats is altogether impossible.
The hindsight of the Ubiquitous Committee is wonderful, on the other hand, its foresight is extremely poor. A unique feature of the Committee, the complete absence of insight, surprises corporate neophytes. Older, more worldly observers are rarely surprised by anything a Committee does.
I don’t work in the corporate world. Nonetheless, I can appreciate the humor.
Isaac Asimov suggested a simple test to separate a chemist from a non-chemist. How? Have somebody read the word unionized aloud.
The non-chemist would say “union-NIZED” while the chemist would pronounce the same word as “UN-ionized”.
These are some of the paintings of Vladimir Kush, a Russian surrealist painter. They were painted during the 1980’s.
The following two number relationships that I gleaned from Edward Barbeau’s Power Play (1998) are worthy of note:
1 + 2 = 3 = 3 × (1²)
4 + 5 + 6 = 7 + 8 = 3 × (1² + 2²)
9 + 10 + 11 + 12 = 13 + 14 + 15 = 3 × (1² + 2² + 3²)
16 + 17 + 18 + 19 + 20 = 21 + 22 + 23 + 24 = 3 × (1² + 2² + 3² + 4²)
1 = 0³ + 1³
2 + 3 + 4 = 1³ + 2³
5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 = 2³ + 3³
10 + 11 + 12 + 13 + 14 + 15 + 16 = 3³ + 4³
- Why You Should Write Three Pages of Garbage Every Morning (Lifehacker)
- The Story Behind the Poem on the Statue of Liberty (The Atlantic)
- thenostalgiamachine.com (The title explains what this site is all about)
- The Most Beautiful and Famous Trees on Earth (Green Landscapes)
- What’s Hiding Inside Egypt’s Great Pyramid? Tiny Robots May Find Out (Live Science)
This video shows Johnny Cash doing his impersonation of Elvis. I think that this is quite amusing.
I just found a piano performance of a young Liberace (Władziu Valentino Liberace) on YouTube yesterday. Apparently, this was filmed during the 1940’s though I’m not sure exactly when.