Friday, January 27, 2023
The Design of Everyday Sinks
THIS WAS DEFINITELY MEANT AS A SINK.
6) Have you seen, heard of, or even thought of a man-bidet until now?
7) I don't think man-bidets would be widely used. At least not for self-cleaning. We would certainly mock them.
8) Man-bidets would often be misused by very drunk men. They could become water fountains, face washers, foot baths, urinals, vomit sinks (Speibecken), reservoirs, or worse. Would give a new meaning to the term "reservoir tip." Good. That term with condoms always made me feel inadequate. Other men must have a much, much greater storage capacity.
9) If man-bidets were popular, they would only be in bathrooms that also had standard bidets. Would you want to manage a hotel that only has bidets for men?
10) What if an innocent pet dog drank from a mandet? Ewww! Next thing you know, a dog somewhere might drink from a toilet. Very unsanitary. The CDC has extensively simulated this remote possibility and concluded that these poor dogs would suffer thirst reduction.
11) Here's a picture from the hotel's website. The sink is bracketed by a shower on the left and a toilet on the left.
Soooo... it's a sink.
This sink reminded me of this book cover:
This book was required reading for us at UCSD Cog Sci. It's now read much more broadly, but still not enough. Its caption for Figure 1.1 calls it a coffeepot for masochists. You could sell that sadistic sink to masochists. Other target buyers: men who want to become "smaller" and also prefer cold water instead of surgery. Invest today! Operators are standing by!
This tea kettle, like the horizontal sink, would deliver water to an unwanted part of the body. The kettle could be practical, clever, even beautiful, iff you ignore or reframe its intended function. You know, like the sink or that body part.
If the kettle were used as a planter, then the spout wouldn't be used as a spout. The putative spout could be used for a second type of herb, different color flower, or incense holder. What you idiots thought was a misplaced handle is actually trellising so you can plant Virginia Creeper. The so-called lid is the next fashion breakthrough. I admit I was the only one who wore one to that Bar Mitzvah.
Wednesday, January 25, 2023
I just asked The Internet to define “mandet”. It wasn't a word in modern English. It is now. A mandet is a bidet for men.
My dad and his brother have been licensed contractors for decades. Their work has been in Architectural Digest repeatedly. They’ve built for billionaires and still do. So I saw a lot of fancy bathrooms and faucets. But nothing this crafty!
Faucets normally aim down, so unused water goes into a basin with a drain instead of on the user and floor. I was among the first to experience firsthand the next Kuhnian Paradigm Shift of shifting strong shooting snow-streams toward my shaft. Not down, or even up/adjustable like some bidets – straight out. Almost horizontal.
I had just taken a shower. I saw this... abomination. How naïve I was!! I thought it was a sink because:
1) Most restrooms have a sink somewhere.
2) It looked like a sink.
3) It was right where a sink would normally be.
(4) It was obviously a sink.
So I turned it on, launching high pressure freezing water several inches below my navel. If you think it doesn't seem like sufficient water pressure to bruise, you've never been male. Lefty's one of those sensitive types.
I had just washed appropriately during my shower. As usual. I mean, I *am* a filthy American, but at least I’m not a Hun or Duke of York. I didn’t realize I... it… they… needed to be pressure-washed, tetherballed, flash-frozen, and shrink-wrapped. I was a sopranino niño. Imagine the foreheads of 2 Mastiffs or Shar Peis.
Or don’t. Too late? You only had to ponder it
briefly. I’m still too numb to tell whether they’re descending or unraveling.
Sunday, March 13, 2022
I realized today that the Brendan's Urban Mendicant (BUM) Index relies on the presumption that I can correctly identify beggars across language barriers. Several people have hit me up for money here in Romania, all of them in Romanian, which I don't speak. All such requests have been in the "passive" category (which I defined in the Tan Jeer blog post), and the BUMI is fairly high here overall. (High = bad.) But how do I know they are actually begging? That would be a serious flaw in my methods section.
What if it's the opposite of begging? Why should I presume begging just because a bedraggled stranger approached me out of nowhere, looked pathetic, maybe held out a hand, and started speaking? Haven't we all heard these phrases from such people before?
Hey buddy, c
Hey buddy, can I spare a dollar?
You need a few bucks for bus fare?
Can I help a guy down on his luck?
Help from a guy up on his luck?
Since my dorm room (yes, I am in a student dorm) is cruelly close to a gym, I had another opportunity to presume what people say in Romanian. When they're spotting each other, I think they're saying more or less the same thing that English-speakers do while coaching someone lifting weights or giving birth.
You can do it!
Just a little more!
You did it!
OK, now just one more….
Thursday, March 3, 2022
Vlad the Ukrainer
Charles the Simple. Aethelred the Unready. Ivan the Terrible. Archibald the Loser. Alfonso the Sloberrer. Sviatopolk the Accursed. Catherine the Great (Horsefucker). Not the finest monikers. I would not wish to be known as Brendan the (any of those things). Nor would you – especially because you’re probably not named Brendan.
None of them come anywhere close to Vlad the Impaler. “Impaler” is much more specific and evocative. Vlad the Impaler might be less well-known today than Vlad the Ukraine-invader, and Putin has earned himself many nasty appellations, but nothing will be as memorable as “the impaler.” Besides, Putin needs no sobriquet in Romania; here, "Putyin" means "small."
I’m well within a one-day train ride of Vlad’s castle. I’m also a one-day train ride from neo-Vlad’s invasion of Ukraine. Hmm. Which would you choose to explore next?
I will also visit there to hang out with the Trans community. Unless I’m missing something, people who were born in Transylvania, and grew up there and vote there, are Trannies with a capital T – regardless of transgenderism. They might be offended at transexuals for co-opting their name, just like the roughly 114,000 citizens of Lesbos. On what basis would “true” Trannies or Lesbians be denied special treatment offered to those groups? Could some smartass rename a small town “Bisexua” and apply for funding or other benefits meant for bisexuals? If you mixed the resulting MSNBC and Fox News coverage of that story, would the resulting annihilation destroy earth?
And now for some photos worth discussion.
Why are ribs so often promoted as the world's finest prepared food? My hosts took me out for dinner. The waiter, unprompted, said I should get the ribs because they are "the best in the world." Ever heard a waiter promote the best fruit salad in the world? Remember that one place that advertised the world's finest ketchup? How many chefs vie for best oatmeal? Breadsticks? Eggplant parmesan? Mashed potatoes? Chicken strips? Corn, peas, or even a vegetable medley? Every restaurant in Austria (and many hardware stores) sold half-cranberry-juice-half-water drinks, but none claimed superiority. wrt their menu. Of course.
No, it wasn't a rib joint. The menu included several pages of other items. I was really having fun with my plan to choose something I couldn't identify and probably never had before. Ribs don't qualify.
I was thus pleased with the humble self-promotion shown below:
I find the following business a little scary. I keep wanting to go quietly flip the "open" sign. If they're really blind, how would they know? I might save future customers' eyes from blind barbers' scissors.
From a quick online search, they provide a free drink with each haircut. Yeah. Might dull the pain. I am tempted to go there for a haircut, but I first have to learn how the Romanian version of the old joke ending with "...I lost this arm in a sawmill."
And what have we here? These look like two well-known brands in the US without the branding. Like the preceding picture, there is an explanation that is more correct and less funny, but then you're missing the point of this blog.