Archive for Science

The Almighty Bobby-pin

As I have gone through my life, I have come to realize the important role that a certain small object has come to play in my life.  This miraculous creation of man is called the BOBBY PIN.  You know what I’m talking about.  Many may be of the belief that it is only good to keep one’s hair in place, but I have come to realize what stupendous qualities and talents this little piece of matter is capable of.  So, in order to more fully educate the general population of the world, I have compiled a list of just a few of things I have learned the bobby pin is good for.


1-Chip bag clip

2-Paper clip

3-Page-turn Tab (for those peculiar page-turns in music that isn’t quite copied correctly)

4-Fish hook

5-Lock-pick (this is frequently seen in movies)

6-Drain-hair hook (invented by my older brother when we were forced to share a bathroom and he was sick of my hair clogging up the drain)

7-Creating a more fitted t-shirt out of a loose-fitting one

8-Diving practice (throw a bobby pin randomly in the water and dive to try to find it — I have used this with my brothers when they are learning to dive)

9-Thread-pin (wrap thread around it to store it for a later day)

10-Art projects (I haven’t used it myself, but I’m sure some beautiful peices of art could be created with bobby-pins and glue alone)

11-Weapon of small-scale destruction

12-As a short circuit (BEWARE — This will ruin the pin)

13-Spit rag weight (for clarinetists who are too cheap to buy and actual spit-rag made for the clarinet)

14-Finger extension for those broken buttons in electronics

15-Reset those gosh-darned little digital toys (you know, with those little inset buttons?)

16-Of course, to keep hair in place

17-A musical instrument (see

18-Unlocking handcuffs (see

19-Christmas Tree ornament hook

20-Decorate them to make “cute” accesories

21-Replace a lost zipper thing (the part you pull)

22-Holding TV/computer/etc. cords together or in a certain place — Just slide the end under a baseboard or whatever.

23-Book mark

24-For use in magic tricks


26-Cleaning under your fingernails

27-Stabbing through those gosh-darned “sealed for your protection” things under the lids of new peanut butter and such

28-Food sampling (used like a toothpick)

29-Getting “food particles” out from between braces on teeth (although not recommended, if the end is small enough, it’s not SO bad…)

30-Some kind of scene earring

31-An Emo tool of causing onesself pain

32-Small clamp to keep things together as the glue dries

34-Tool to push things into place that are meant to be glued together and you don’t want to get the glue on your fingers (like when you’re trying to glue a broken peice of a vase or ceramic figure together)

35-Science class demonstration about magnets

36-Making a stink bomb (

37-Science experiment demonstrating how to improve the quality of metal with heat.

38-Making Tetrahedrons and stuff out of paper paints, tape, and glue

39-Cleaning out your ears

40-For use in finger-football (flick it into the “field goal”)

41-Stabbing bugs for future examination

42-Sharply creasing a peice of paper (usually so much so you can rip the paper on the crease)

43-Cherry pitter


45-Pinning sleeves up (particularly during gym class — This is a common practice amongst girls who feel the need to show off a little shoulder)

46-Clothespin (hanging laundry — I use this inside to keep socks hanging over a hanger or something)

47-Poking open an air-sealed plastic bag (like those Mrs. Fields cookies come in)

48-Cleaning up the edges of freshly-painted fingernails (for those of us with a less-than steady hand)

49-Prying things out of small crevases

50-Poking at dead things (like dead rat/bird/snake/hampster)

And thus we see justs a FEW examples of the uses for this miraculous invention.


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The Great Equalizer

It gets pretty cold in Utah.  That’s a known fact.  People in Utah (and the rest of the world) are also very different from each other.  That’s also a known fact.  What do these have in common, you ask?

 Well, I have come to realize that EVERYBODY feels cold.  Well.  Not all the time.  But everybody can appriciate cold (or hot) to some degree or another.

Have you ever been asked, on a cold wintry day, when you’re inside and not really all that cold, “how are you?” and automatically replied, “cold” simply because it’s cold outside?  And then they, of course, reply in tandem, “me too!”  Yes?  I’m sure countless others have done it as well.  Men, women, children, black people, white people, Indian people, people who like pistachios, people who wear black, girls with pink hair, guys with blue hair, poor people, rich people, people who live out of a boat… It’s just good to know that we all have that in common, the ability to feel cold and acknowledge that fact.

It just makes the world a little smaller, doesn’t it?

Or not.  Whatever.

But it’s cold down here.

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True Girl and Boy Scouters Say they REALLY Don’t Exist…

I have recently come to the knowledge that snipes, do, in fact, exist.  You may be saying to yourself, “Aw, man, I forgot about snipes!!  We had those young’uns CONVICED that they could catch one if they covered themselves in toothpaste!!”  Well. Turns out those “young’uns” were right.  At least in some parts of the world.

Myself, I never actually went snipe hunting.  I found out that their “existence” was false long before I was ever offered the wonderful opportunity to cover myself in toothpaste and dig around in small bushes like a caveman.  But, I was witness to many hunting groups departing for the hunt.  They were always late at night so I was always already “cozy” in my sleeping bag long before they arrived back from an eventul night of snipe hunting.

According to the campers’ folklore, at least in my area, a snipe is a small, fluffy, flightless bird.  It is attracted by the scent of toothpaste and are actually very cute, but hold a nasty nibble if caught, so one must be careful not to actually get bitten. 

According to Wikipedia, though, and I quote, “A Snipe is any of nearly 20 very similar wading bird species in three genera in the family Scolopacidae. They are characterised by a very long slender bill and cryptic plumage. The Gallinago snipes have a nearly worldwide distribution, the Lymnocryptes Jack Snipe is restriced to Asia and Europe and the Coenocorypha snipes are restriced to New Zealand. The three species of painted snipe are not closely related to these, and are placed in their own family, the Rostratulidae.”

So, there you have it.  I guess they’ll have to find some other name for them.  Myth BUSTED!!

(For the complete article on Snipes, go to OR for the “folklore” behind the snipe”)

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Intentions?: The Grand Exit

It is official — Newbert has completely completed his obsession with Manzanity C-6 and has moved on to more… Promising ventures.  Ventures that allow him to “cuddle,” “hang out,” and suck plenty of face.  Indeed, Newbert has proven himself to be one of the most low-slung Jacks in the realms of Manzanita.

But, before he found a girl outside C-6, Newbert decided to have a lapse in memory and reverted back to his original Manzanita C-sixter, Jordan, and I learned what it felt like be her during that fleeting three weeks, was one of few people he communicated with and excluded all else.  It is apparent that Newbert is a very linear person and thus only able to think of one thing at a time.

And now, it is sucking face.  That may sound like a harsh term to use for it, but it’s all I’ve got.  See, as I am yet VL, I have absolutely no right to be dissing the makeout scene, so I, in my cynical nature, do all I can to degrade this teenaged recreational passtime.

And so ends the saga of mis-interpreted intentions and ridiculous outbursts of haikus in favor of some serious teeth-cleanings.

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Intentions?: Oh, What a Blunder

Newbert has officially proven himself to be a greater dating dunderhead than I had previously made MYSELF out to be.  He has committed a courtshipping crime of such huge proportions, not once, but TWICE now.  He has now asked out THREE girls that live IN THE SAME ROOM.  He does not realize how horribly, HORRIBLY wrong things can go for him at any moment in his pursuit of dating equilibrium.  The scales are tipping, but most definitely not in his favor.

Now, as you may recall, Newbert, at first, asked my roommate Jordan out.  I had no idea really who he was, and really didn’t care who he dated.  So, they went on one date and he starting hanging around our apartment a LOT, and eventually ended up asking ME out.  You may recall the confusion that ensued in the room, to which Newbert was completely incognizant.

Well, many things happened.  Well, not much really, but time passed, and thus we reach the point at where I realize that Newbert and I have nothing in common and he realizes that I have nothing in common with his ex-girlfriend, and therefore am not worth the social stress.  Things simmer down and I no longer feel awkward and socially retarded — In fact, I’m at the top of my game.  I now find his attachment to his girlfriend not a slap in the face, but rather an amusing fact that will hopefully, for his sake, dissappear by the time he gets home from his mission. 

Anyway, back to the actual plotline.  He comes over to my place last night, reason unknown.  Jordan is in bed, Jessica is over at B building, Kristen is out with friends, and Melissa is at work.  So, we play a little Bloody Roar 2.  Just like old times.  Except of course he sits a comfortable one and half feet away from me.  And then Jessica arrives. 

The previous night, he had texted Jordan about asking her out, but I never thought it would happen so soon.  He engages in smalltalk flirting with Jessica, and Jessica, being the tough chick she is, seems to find it as amusing as me.  He then “gracefully” (kind of like a tap-dancing emu) segways into asking her out.  Strangely enough, that same odd confusion fell upon all the females in the room, and Jessica replied in a way that was oddly reminiscent of how I had replied to his invitation about a month prior.  Except of course, she was expecting it and she actually has other friends.  But of course, she replies yes, and they plan it for the following Thursday.  While I’m in the room.  By a poll taken of all the guys in my phone book, this is possibly one of the most doltish things to do in the prescence of a girl you had previously dated.  “Dude, tell this guy to go date his mom or something… (John)”

Now, to demonstrate the Newbert’s astounding creativity, they are going out for hot chocolate.  Hm.  That sounds familiar.  Didn’t he and Jordan do that on their date?  And didn’t Newbert and I do that on OUR date?  Oh, Newbert, you slay me.

Dating roommates.  Seinfeld says it can’t be done gracefully.  The girls of Manzanita C-6 are here to prove him right.

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Intentions?: Missed signals

Alright, so I admit it.  I have failed to post new blogs about the “experiment.”  and in the time between the first blog and this one, many things have come in to light, and it has ceased to be an experiment in intentions, but rather an experiment in the extent of my own idiosyncrasis and obliviousness to what the heck is going on.

In essence Jordan is no longer a key factor in this “experiment” but rather my sounding board for ideas on what IS really going on.  The only problem is, both of us are completely clueless in the field of “body language.”  And thus, this post shall be dedicated to the various items in the body language bag of tricks that will henceforth and forever boggle me and thus doom me to being single forever.

Most of these items occur while watching movies — which mostly have involved zombies and memory loss, thus to avoid those gosh darned face-sucking scenes (although, there was plenty of blood-sucking going on in the zombie movie.  But that’s just awesome).  And so we begin.

Item 1: seating arrangements.

Newbert has recently taken to sitting “dangerously close” during these frequent movies.  As in, shoulder to shoulder.  Being very cold everwhere in Cedar City, even inside buildings, I do not object, but rather sit in beffudlement as to this sudden breach of the one-foot barrier that most testosterone-bearing beings have hitherto seemed to keep from me.  It happened for all three movies we watched this past weekend (Yes, one every day.  Noone else wanted to do anything.  Don’t judge me!).  I recall a scene when I came to watch Arrested Development with Jordan and Newbert.  I arrived late, and thus there was little room on the couch and I had to sit on a separate sofa from Jordan and Newbert, between which was a very pleasant and friendly two-feet of space between.  When I arrived, Newbert moved farther from Jordan and closer to the edge of the sofa closest to the chair in which I was sitting.  But, no invitation to sit on the same couch.  During date 3 (Sidewalk chalking and hot chocolate at The Grind), there WAS, however, and invitation to sit on the same couch as we sipped our hot chocolate (a loveseat couch, nonetheless), with a claim that it was, in fact, a better couch than the regular three-cushion sofa I had at first taken to to enjoy my hot chocolate.  And then, suddenly, the most recent destruction of the couch barrier.

Anyway, it just causes me to wonder — how often does Newbert find occasion to do that?  Because he seems rather nonchalant about it all, whilst I sit rather awkwardly and stiffly.  I also have to wonder if any of this is registering in his brain.

Item 2: The dead fish arm

This, I hear, is a rather common hand-holding tactic, used by thousands of  assertive-less adolescents everywhere.  It consists, basically, of one of the couch-sitting members leaving their hand awkwardly on the couch at their side, closest to the other couch-sitter, in hopes that possibly the other couch member will grasp it and a “moment” will ensue.  I believe I have encountered this type of placement at other types of social events, but have never reciprocated well, because I, as you well know, am completely oblivious.  The question must be asked — is that actually an innocent arm-placement left there for no other reason than comfort, or is the placement a strategic way to create another level of couch-sitting-movie-watching?  I’m assuming I’ll never know.

Item 3: HIS head plus MY shoulder

This one I actually found rather… Hm… Odd.  I feel it as a bit of a role-reversal, if I’m correct.  As I see it in the movies, the FEMALE is supposed to innocently put HER head on the male’s shoulder, indicating “OMG I am SOO comfortable.  Lurvs.” But in this case, he apparently decided to take the initiative.  And I found the whole thing so hilariously ironic that I literally laughed out loud.  I have no idea how he took that, but it seemed to have to lasting effects, because he did it again, and just kind of stayed there while I flipped through the channels after the movie and came to rest on something on the food channel.  He stayed there for rather a long time.  It was all just… odd.  And so, my beffuddlement continues.

And so, there are the three main items that I wished to cover.  There are plenty more, but I just recieved an invitation for a walk from Newbert himself, as both of us have been cooped up in our rooms all day.

Maybe more later, we’ll see… 😉

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Intentions?: The beginning

You know, intentions are often lost in translation.  Especially to us estrogen-bearing beings in regards to those of the testosterone-bearing variety.

For example, and I only give one example for now for it is currently almost one in the morning because I was… well, we’ll get to that.  This guy — Let us call him… Newbert — recently asked my roommate out on a date because she was complaing about not having gone on any dates for a pitifully extended amount of time.  And then he kind of … Latched on.  Texting all the time, coming over to hang out a lot.  Really nice guy.  Lots of fun.  Then recently me and Jordan were discussing my complete lack of tallies on our date tally chart we have going  (Jordan — 3; Me — 0) while he just happened to be around, and he suddenly just says “I’ll add a tally,” and basically just asks ME out.  Now, this throws ALL of us for a loop (he is completely oblivious to our confusion, for he is a bearer of the blinding light of testosterone), for none of us were expecting it.  But we hide it well.  We all do a very good job at covering up how awkward the situation has become.

So, Jordan and I have a discussion — shall I take him up? We decide, yes.  It may be a fun experiment to see if Newbert is REALLY thinking he can date roommies.

Day one: Saturday, Oct. 06, 2007, 1:00 PM

Newbert texts Jordan, asking her if Amanda (that would be me) is around.  She laughs and tells her, then tells him that she will give her his phone number.  Amanda texts him and tells him that Jordan told her to text him.  He promptly asks her if she wants to go get breadsticks at Little Caesar’s.  Jordan and Amanda decide that it would be a wonderful installment in our little experiment.  So, Amanda replies sure and they later leave.  They walk to Little Caesar’s and order the breadsticks.  Conversation at a nearby table ensues, and Amanda decides to lean forward on the table, indicating interest in the conversation.  Newbert responds in time and leans forward as well, and continues to lean forward onto table even as Amanda leans back in her chair.  Conversation continues until breadsticks are served and into the breadsticks.  Amanda spills the beans about her Pokemon fetish in her younger years — He gets a few good laughs out of it.  In fact, he gets a few good laughs out of a lot of things.  A few of Amanda’s friends arrive and interrupt the conversation, and Newbert looks very awkward.  Amanda quickly ends the conversation with her friends and continues former conversation.  Breadsticks are completed and they leave the pizza place and walk over the grocery store, for Newbert is in need of some frozen pizzas.  Somehow, they end up in the Hot cocoa isle and they discuss their tastes in hot cocoa.  Newbert buys mint hot cocoa and they exit the store.

They begin walking back towards campus, where Newbert lets Amanda carry the bright orange flag accross the street.  As they continue on their way, there is a moment of physical contact where Newbert decides to “nudge” Amanda off the curb and into the bicycle lane.  A “playful” dirty look is given by Amanda, Newbert is slightly apologetic and offers a hand over the gutter that a small child could drown in. She refuses and jumps accross by herself as a large “Le Bus” drives by aboutf three feet away from Amanda just was, and the accusations fly that Newbert pushed her in front of the bus.  Jordan would later threaten his life over this.  Much laughter ensues and they arrive back at Amanda’s place, talk to Jordan where she threatens his life and he leaves to go the Priesthood session of General Conference.

Later, Newbert begins to text Amanda while he is still in the meeting.  He asks “so what are you up to?”  She tells him she is on a geeky website.  He sends her to his own website and she promptly calls it geeky.  A few emoticons ensue, and he hints at something that he will tell her later.  Date two is already in the works for the same day.

He later texts her, telling her when he will be over agian, “I’m gonna change and head over if thats ok”  She replies a hesitant, “okay” and he arrives ten minutes later.  Jordan leaves to a concert and the two are left alone* in the apartment.  Much hot-chocolating and conversation ensues and continues for the rest of the evening until about 11:00, at which time they commence in watching videos of Bill Nye and Chad Vader on Youtube until 12:30, at which time, both decided that it was late and he should go back to his place before the crazy people come out and the chance of him getting mugged on his way back increases by 30%. 

Heading towards the door ensues, but Newbert leans against the wall and continues in conversation.  This indicates a reluctance to leave.  Five minutes pass in conversation until he eventually leaves.  Date two over.  Intentions — as yet unclear.  We know there are many possible intentions he may posess, but the fact that he is dating both Amanda and Jordan is rather… Disconcerting?

Next episode — Sunday texting?  Maybe. We’ll see…

This blog and the blogs hereafter about our little “experiment” is intended to be read along with Jordan’s companion blog at

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