Eiron’s Archives 05

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[ A little less of the obscurantism please Eiron. Ed. ]

Dear kJD82AHf66 enquires :

‘ Does the honey-bee population decline mean an end to humans ? ‘

No, but they might well become substantially more hungry – especially those with sweet tooths. ( my spellchecker refuses to accept that word – but I’m almost sure it’s correct in this context )

Dear BlinkAndFox

Yes, of course one can. But then again, there are not many things one can’t get addicted to – are there ?

Dear IncLewsieve

‘ Is the thumbs up gesture offensive Australia ? ‘

Well, if I were French, I might shrug my shoulders. If Belgian, I may well twiddle my moustache. And if of Chinese descent I could even stomp my right foot. That being said, I might caution that, just as in spoken language, the manner in which a communication is presented can often influence its meaning to quite a degree.

By the way, another perfectly acceptable ( in Australia ) gesture of satisfaction is the ‘ bulls-eye ’ – form a small circle with the index finger and thumb. ( If you happen to be ambidextrous though, I would strongly advise against using this at the same time as the thumbs up. )

Dear OrgoneDona

No, I don’t think that there is a scientific term for ‘ The Sense of Having Forgotten Something ‘ . Perhaps we could come up with one ? Such as Ephemeramnesia ? Personally, I often find myself thinking that I’ve forgotten something – only to find out later that I hadn’t – this must be Faux-ephemeramnesia I suppose.

Dear Klof34rz

Yes, but don’t overdo the agar jelly.

Dear Yposode

I regret to inform you that although you have been fed entirely on organic food since birth ( as you have described ) you yourself would not, if tested, rate as 100% organic.

Even if you have no tooth-fillings or nail varnish, your tissues will certainly be habouring a whole swathe of man-made chemicals ( pesticides, solvents, plasticisers, etc etc ) which are, regretfully, present in ever increasing quantities throughout almost every region of the planet. To say nothing of various trans-uranic isotopes which are entirely man-made, and, since the H-bomb tests of the 1950’s can now be detected in the cells of all living organisms.

By all means get yourself tested though – if you pass ( 100% mind ! ) , let me know and I will be absolutely delighted – and will of course issue a public retraction.

Dear La0anleatsaaIT

Sorry, my editor no longer permits me to give advice on criminal matters. But I am aware that the word ‘ bung ’ does not always refer to the stoppers of laboratory glassware.

Dear Tsdfgoop

You are quite right. It is high time that exercise-gyms design and instigate truly wide-ranging routines that exercise all the bodily muscles with equal rigour. I have yet to see, for example, a gym which pays attention to the temporalis muscle – Responsible ( in part ) for opening and shutting the jaw. Yes, it is perhaps true that certain individuals like [ ███████ ] , already get enough jaw-specific exercise during their daily routine – but what of those who do not ?

For those interested, I have devised my own temporalis exercise which involves rhythmic chewing on a thick rubber wedge for half an hour every day. I would be pleased to provide details ( and can suggest an accompanying music CD ) on request.

Dear TrKasdhy

You asked : “ What are the effects of an x-ray machine scan on parrot eggs ? “ Now let me see – are you by any chance thinking about parrot eggs that might be, for instance, inside a suitcase perhaps ? If so, then yes, like any other living thing, their DNA will suffer dose-dependant ill-effects caused by the ionising radiation. Have you considered transporting them in your coat pockets ? Either way, I’m sure that the relevant airport authorities will be delighted if you contact them for advice.

Dear KlopperHoof

You enquired : “ What is a strech (sic.) of water joining 2 bodies of water together ? “. This is a tricky one. If the bodies are very large, let us say, sea-sized, then I imagine the word ‘ strait ’ might be applicable. Lexical usage also depends though upon the relative height of the two bodies and the distance between them. If one is much higher than the other, then you should use the word ‘ waterfall ’ – unless they are a very long way apart, in which case the word ‘ river ‘ may be more applicable. ( For smaller bodies, as for example, two puddles, I am not at all sure that a suitable word exists. )

Dear trackLev

Your query : “ What are some quick clues that would give away if someone had an addiction to nicotine ? “

The smoking of tobacco products ( viz. cigarettes, cigars, pipes, hookahs, etc etc ) would be a strong clue. As would be the regular use of tobacco snuff. But there are other, less publicly overt methods of absorbing nicotine, some of which have ritualistic histories going back hundreds of years – a clue would be frequent visits to the bathroom with a small bag ( probably brown ).

Dear CupHalftring

You asked about : “ Suppressing the gag-reflex while drinking beer “. At fist I thought you might be enquiring for the purposes of gaining ground in some grotesque drinking competition – but then I realised that you might instead be referring to the very understandable reaction induced when in the unfortunate position of unwittingly imbibing certain brands of common ale. Ubiquitous and popular though they are, my opinion is that they are generally disgusting and only suitable as bait in slug traps. Rather than trying to perfect your gag-reflex control, why not just switch to a good real-ale instead ?

Dear FortoPino

Thank you for asking your question – and giving me this opportunity to expand upon the idea of Parasitism.

My dictionary defines a parasite as :

‘ an animal or plant that lives on or in another animal or plant of a different type and feeds from it. ‘

But, is it not the case that all animals depend for their very lives on devouring some other creature ?

So, it would appear, would it not, that the crucial part of defining parasitism must be the ‘ on or in ’  clause.

I insist then that at this point we must ask : Why is the physical distance between the host and the parasite considered so relevant ?

From unfortunate host’s point of view, is it truly such an important factor ? If the host finds him/herself in the unfortunate position of being eaten, I put it to you that he/she will not find the distance from which it is done all that engaging a concept – and will focus very much more intently on the time which it takes.

D’you see ?

Thus, I feel it is my duty to propose an entirely new botanical / zoological / philosophical / systemic category :

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