Saturday’s smiles

January 14, 2017

Old Farmer’s Advice:

Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.

Keep skunks and bankers at a distance.

Life is simpler when you plough around the stump.

A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.

Words that soak into your ears are whispered…not yelled.

Meanness don’t jes’ happen overnight.

Forgive your enemies; it messes up their heads.

Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.

It don’t take a very big person to carry a grudge.

You cannot unsay a cruel word.

Every path has a few puddles.

When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.

The best sermons are lived, not preached.

Most of the stuff people worry about ain’t never gonna happen anyway.

Don’t judge folks by their relatives.

Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

Live a good, honourable life.. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll enjoy it a second time.

Don’t interfere with somethin’ that ain’t bothering you none.

Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a Rain dance.

If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin’.

Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.

The biggest troublemaker you’ll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin’.

Always drink upstream from the herd.

Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back in.

If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around..

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God. 


Saturday’s smiles

January 7, 2017

An engineer crosses a road when a frog calls out to him, “If you kiss me, I’ll turn into a beautiful princess.”

He bends over, picks up the frog and puts it in his pocket. The frog speaks up again and says, “If you kiss me and turn me back into a beautiful princess, I will stay with you for one week.”

The engineer takes the frog out of his pocket, smiles at it and returns it to the pocket. The frog then cries out, “If you kiss me and turn me back, I’ll do whatever you say!”

Again the engineer takes the frog out, smiles at it and puts it back into his pocket.

Finally, the frog asks, “What is the matter? I’ve told you I’m a beautiful princess, I’ll stay with you for a month and do whatever you say. What more do you want?”

The engineer says, “Look, I’m an engineer. I don’t have time for a girlfriend, but a talking frog, now that’s cool!”

Saturday’s smiles

December 31, 2016

A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.

Youth is wanting to stay up to see the New Year in, middle age is having to.

What is corn’s favourite holiday?

New Ears day.

What is a cow’s favourite holiday?

 Moo Year’s Day.

What do you find in a newly mown paddock on January 1st?

New Year’s hay.



Saturday’s smiles

December 24, 2016

Santa Claus: an Engineering Analysis

1. No known species of reindeer can fly, but there are 300,000 species of living organisms yet to be classified, and while most of these are insects and germs, this does not completely rule out flying reindeer which only Santa has seen.

2. There are 2 billion children in the world (persons under 18). But since Santa doesn’t (appear) to handle Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, or Buddhist children, that reduces the workload by 85% of the total, leaving 378 million according to the Population Reference Bureau. At an average (census) rate of 3.5 children per household, that’s 91.8 million homes. One presumes there is at least one good child per house.

3. Santa has 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west (which seems logical). This works out to 822.6 visits per second. This is to say that for each Christian household with good children, Santa has 1/1000th of a second to park, hop out of the sleigh, jump down the chimney, fill the stocking, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever snacks have been left, get back up the chimney, get back into the sleigh and move on to the next house. Asusming that each of these 91.8 million stops are evenly distributed around the earth, which, of course, we know to be false, but for the purposes of our calculations we will accept, we are now talking about 0.78 miles per household, for a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not counting stops to do what most of us do at least once every 31 hours, plus feeding, etc. That means that Santa’s sleigh is moving at 650 miles per second, 3000 times the speed of sound. For purposes of comparison, the fastest man-made vehicle on earth, the Ulysses space probe, moves at a poky 27.4 miles per second – a conventional reindeer can run, at tops 15 miles per hour.

4. The payload on the sleigh adds another interesting element. Assuming each child gets nothing more than a medium sized lego set (2 pounds), the sleigh is carrying 321,300 tons, not counting Santa, who is invariably described as overweight. On land, conventional reindeer can pull no more than 300 pounds. Even granting the “flying reindeer” can pull TEN TIMES the normal amount, we cannot do the job with eight, or even nine. We need 214,200 reindeer. This increased the payload – not even counting the weight of the sleigh to 353,430 tons. Again, for comparison – this is four times the weight of the Queen Elizabeth – 5,353,000 tons travelling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance. This will heat the reindeer up in the same fashion as spacecrafts re-entering the earth’s atmosphere. The lead pair will absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy per second each. In short, they will burst into flames almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them, and creating a deafening sonic boom in their wake. The entire reindeer team will be vaporized with 4.26 thousandths of a second. Santa, meanwhile, will be subject to centrifugal forces 17,500.06 times greater than gravity. A 250 pound Santa (which seems ludicrously slim) would be pinned to the back of the sleigh by a 4,315,015 pound force.


If people are going to attempt to apply science to the question of Santa, the least they can do is to get it right. The so-called “Engineer” that wrote the paper suggesting that Santa Claus is dead had it all wrong.

A) In paragraph 5, the Engineer states that “600,000 tons traveling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance.” Assuming that this true, it may well be that the reindeer are protected by some sort of heat shield, which is the basis of the “red nose” legend. More to the point, the “air resistance” theory is a vast oversimplification, and a sloppy one at that. In comparing a parachute to a javelin, one can see that there is no simple, direct, predictable relationship between the weight of an object and its air resistance. The air resistance theory completely ignores many possible configurations of Santa’s team that could greatly reduce air resistance.

Paragraph 5 is invalidated all the more when one considers paragraph 1, which states that most of the 300,000 unclassified species on the earth are insects and microorganisms. This suggests that it is overwhelmingly probable that any unknown species (such as flying reindeer) is extremely small (possibly even microscopic), with correspondingly low air resistance.

Also, note that various small species (e.g. bumblebee) have been known to accomplish feats of aviation that have proven quite difficult for science to explain. Furthermore, many small species (e.g. ants) possess strength that is immense proportional to their size. Also note that every known species has a body structure capable of withstanding whatever stresses are created at the top speed at which the creature is capable of traveling.

Therefore, contrary to the Engineer’s conclusion, the possible existence of unknown, very small, very strong, flying creatures is indicated, and all of the Engineer’s statistics on the mass, speed, capacity, and durability of standard Reindeer are therefore irrelevant.

B) If we accept the notion that Santa moves from East to West (an assumption that the Engineer makes in Paragraph 3) then we must also assume that he is moving in a vaguely North-South traversing path as he works his way West. This implies that, if he chose to, he could make several stops at the Pole to re-load the sleigh, and therefore it is not necessary for him to carry the entire payload all at once as described by the Engineer.

The reader may raise the objection that most depictions of Santa’s procedures include a single annual departure from the Pole. However, one must also consider that these same depictions contain many other omissions and simplifications, such as the implication that Santa spends several minutes on each delivery. Even using unrealistically favorable figures, this is mathematically impossible. This and other examples force us to consider these depictions to be strictly allegorical. This makes sense, since a documentary would not be much fun for the target audience.

C) Consider that most chimneys are too small to accommodate an average-sized man, let alone a 250 (plus) pound man. This implies that Santa has a way of entering and exiting dwellings through access paths much smaller than those that would otherwise be required. If the same technique that Santa uses to transport himself and the gifts past locked doors also decreases mass (or makes it irrelevant), then the payload problem is completely solved. (Note that any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.)

D) If we accept the notion that Santa’s intelligence gathering is good enough for him to determine who is bad/good, sleeping/awake etc., then it stands to reason that Santa also knows enough about health problems, travel plans, hurricanes, floods, drive-by shootings, fires, volcanoes, earthquakes, bus crashes, burglaries, etc. etc. etc. to be able to defer or advance some of his deliveries for days or even weeks, thus considerably extending the 31 hour time limit (as mentioned by the Engineer in paragraph 3) for perhaps 3 to 5 percent of children.

E) In paragraph 3, the Engineer admits to the assumption that Christian homes are randomly distributed over the entire surface of the planet. In reality, a majority of the earth’s surface is covered by the oceans, and a great portion of what is left is covered by mountains, deserts, forests, jungles, glaciers, smaller bodies of water, and other natural and man-made features that render the space uninhabitable by humans — or at least extremely sparsely populated by Christians, who largely tend to live in communities with homes placed in neat rows on level ground, or in densely populated vertical blocks in urban areas.

Also, many families tend to gather for the Holidays, thus decreasing the number of Christian dwellings that are actually occupied on December 24-25. Therefore, the aforementioned assumption leads to an *staggering* overestimate of the number of times Santa must travel distances exceeding 60 feet. Also note that this more realistic model includes trans-oceanic voyages during which Santa could take a “bathroom break.”

F) In paragraph 3, the Engineer says that Santa has a very short time in which to “park, hop out of the sleigh, jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever snacks have been left, get back up the chimney, get back into the sleigh and move on to the next house. “In the previous paragraph, I dispensed with the notion that Santa must actually park and exit the sleigh, enter and exit the dwelling, and then enter and drive the sleigh for each delivery. As far as the snacks go, it is clear that between the households where the parents eat the snacks prior to Santa’s arrival and the households that don’t leave snacks at all, Santa has to deal with a snack in only a small proportion of cases. This means that at every stop Santa must, at a minimum, fill stockings and distribute gifts. The other tasks are performed in much smaller proportions.

G) In paragraph 2, the Engineer presents the assumption that roughly 10 children out of 35 are “good.” Given my personal observations, I conclude that this would lead us to overestimate of the number of Christian households containing at least one “good” child by an order of magnitude at the absolute minimum. This, more than anything else, decreases the number of stops that Santa must make.

In conclusion – all of the Engineer’s calculations are based on figures that are massively skewed, always choosing the worst-case value. The distances to be traveled, the number of stops to be made, the amount of work to be performed, and the amount of cargo to be carried are all FAR smaller than the Engineer estimates.

Santa has NOT been burned to a cinder, he has NOT been squished by the acceleration of his sleigh, and (though I’m quite certain he won’t be visiting that Engineer’s house,) Santa Claus IS coming to town!

Saturday’s smiles

December 17, 2016

Please be advised that all employees planning to dash through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh, going over the fields and laughing all the way are required to undergo a Risk Assessment addressing the safety of open sleighs.

This assessment must also consider whether it is appropriate to use only one horse for such a venture, particularly where there are multiple passengers. Please note that permission must also be obtained in writing from landowners before their fields may be entered.

To avoid offending those not participating in celebrations, we request that laughter is moderate only and not loud enough to be considered a noise nuisance.

Benches, stools and orthopaedic chairs are now available for collection by any shepherds planning or required to watch their flocks at night.

While provision has also been made for remote monitoring of flocks by CCTV cameras from a centrally heated shepherd observation hut, all facility users are reminded that an emergency response plan must be submitted to account for known risks to the flocks.

The angel of the Lord is additionally reminded that prior to shining his/her glory all around s/he must confirm that all shepherds are wearing appropriate Personal Protective Equipment to account for the harmful effects of UVA, UVB and the overwhelming effects of Glory.

Following last year’s well publicised case, everyone is advised that human rights legislation prohibits any comment with regard to the redness of any part of Mr. R. Reindeer.

Further to this, exclusion of Mr. R Reindeer from reindeer games will be considered discriminatory and disciplinary action will be taken against those found guilty of this offence.

While it is acknowledged that gift-bearing is commonly practised in various parts of the world, everyone is reminded that the bearing of gifts is subject to Hospitality Guidelines and all gifts must be registered.

This applies regardless of the individual, even royal personages.

It is particularly noted that direct gifts of currency or gold are specifically precluded under provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Further, caution is advised regarding other common gifts, such as aromatic resins that may initiate allergic reactions.

Finally, in the recent case of the infant found tucked up in a manger without any crib for a bed, Social Services have been advised and will be arriving shortly.

Compliance of these guidelines is advised in order for you to fully participate with the appropriate safe level of festive spirit.

Risk Management Team

Beached AZ Key Change

December 13, 2016

A seagull and his beached whale friend, Beached Az,  farewell pay a musical tribute to John Key:


Hat tip: Newshub

Saturday’s smiles

December 10, 2016

Oil Change Instructions for Women:

1) Make an appointment at the local garage and drive there when the odometer reaches 10,000 kilometres since the last oil change.

2) Drink a cup of coffee , read free paper.

3) 15 minutes later, swipe the Visa and leave with a properly maintained vehicle.

Money spent: Oil Change: $40.00 Coffee: $2.00 Total: $42.00

Oil Change instructions for Men:

1) Wait until Saturday, drive to auto parts store and buy a case of oil, filter, kitty litter, hand cleaner and a scented tree, swipe the Visa for $50.00.

2) Stop by the Bottle Shop and buy a slab of beer, swipe the Visa for $40, drive home.

3) Open a beer and drink it.

4) Jack car up. Spend 30 minutes looking for jack stands.

5) Find jack stands under caravan.

6) In frustration, open another beer and drink it.

7) Place drain pan under engine.

8) Look for 19 mm ring spanner.

9) Give up and use crescent wrench.

10) Unscrew drain plug.

11) Drop drain plug in pan of hot oil: splash hot oil on you in process. Curse and swear.

12) Crawl out from under car to wipe hot oil off face and arms. Throw kitty litter on spilled oil.

13) Have another beer while watching oil drain.

14) Spend 30 minutes looking for oil filter wrench. 1

5) Give up; crawl under car and hammer a screwdriver through oil filter and twist off.

16) Crawl out from under car with dripping oil filter splashing oil everywhere from holes. Cleverly, hide old oil filter among rubbish in rubbish bin to avoid environmental penalties. Drink a beer.

17) Install new oil filter making sure to apply a thin coat of oil to gasket surface.

18) Dump first litre of fresh oil into engine.

19) Remember drain plug from step 11.

20) Hurry to find drain plug in drain pan.

21) Drink beer.

22) Discover that first litre of fresh oil is now on the floor. Throw kitty litter on oil spill.

23) Get drain plug back in with only a minor spill. Drink beer.

24) Crawl under car getting kitty litter into eyes. Wipe eyes with oily rag used to clean drain plug. Slip with stupid crescent wrench tightening drain plug and bang knuckles on frame removing any excess skin between knuckles and frame.

25) Begin swearing fit.

26) Throw stupid crescent wrench.

27) Swear for additional 5 minutes because wrench hit bowling trophy.

28) Beer. 29) Clean up hands and bandage as required to stop blood flow.

30) Beer. 31) Dump in five fresh litres of oil.

32) Beer.

33) Lower car from jack stands.

34) Move car back to apply more kitty litter to fresh oil spilled during any missed steps.

35) Beer.

36) Test drive car.

37) Get pulled over: arrested for driving under the influence.

38) Car is impounded.

39) Call loving wife, make bail.

40) 12 hours later, get car from impound yard.

Money spent: Parts: $50.00 Driving Under Influence fine: $2500.00 Impound fee: $75.00 Bail: $1500.00 Beer: $40.00 Total: $4,185.00

But you know the job was done right.

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