July 2004

The Final Verse

For Gandalf: a final verse to Pillow.

Deepily, sleepily, the old puss reposes,
contented and quiet, his narrative closes,
no more to leave fur on my pillow.

I'm getting faster

I'm managing to improve my rate of limerick production. I've written 14 in the last 3 days. I won't list every one of them here. Once the OEDILF is up and running on its own web space it will be easier to search. In the meantime you can view the current OEDILF collection of limericks here.

Some English words have a variety of meanings. Here are my attempts to show some of the different meanings of age.

When "your age" parents tell you to act
They're just craving conformance, in fact.
They rank you with peers
Based on counting your years,
Regardless of how you react.

We think of our lifetimes in stages
Often badging these stages as ages.
There's the age of consent,
Middle age, then descent
Into paying those ages' back-wages.

An age is a period historical
Like "the Age of [some dude oratorical]."
But, for any one year
What's important's not clear
So it's hard to be that categorical.

A chunk of geological time,
When some life-forms left clues in the slime
All of similar types
Found in strata or stripes --
That's an age served in slices of lime.

My dear, as we age we replace
Many things that we used to embrace.
So I'm planning from now
(You intolerant cow)
To grow old disgracefully, Grace.

I find it somewhat reassuring
That a wine can become more alluring
As it ages. I'd say
I'm improving each day,
But I can't rightly say I'm maturing.

Defining aforesaid was fun. I loved the way the sounds came out.

When you're mooting on matters of crime
(Unlike here, where we're waffling in rhyme)
If you can't use "aforesaid"
Then you're forced to have more said
As you frame the full name every time.

There should be a dictionary entry for flaut. However, this limerick was written to define the word aflaunt.

There was a fair flautist named Anna
Took to lying aflaunt on the pyanna.
Though her flute skills were flawed
Anna's fans all adored
How she flaut in a flirtatious manner.

One more, since it mentions Aaron the Aardvark:

"Ablute" is back-formed from "ablution"
i.e. personal dirt dissolution.
Since our aardvark polluted
Holes where he abluted
'Twas more like dirt redistribution.

View More Limericks

Spiderman 2

We saw Spiderman 2 last weekend. It's a pity the Spiderman movies had to jump the shark on number 2. A focus on Spiderman's particular skill set would have stopped him turning into GenericSuperHeroMan. It was entertaining but not brilliant.

Ipsilly Wipsilly
Peter the Spiderman,
Feeling effects of his
Fragile male pride,

Loses his squirt and gains
Fed by the veiled threat:
Here Comes the Bride.

...and a few more

 A few more limericks for the OEDILF:

Aald Aaron the aardvark was achin'
For Aaliyah his wife to aawaken.
He aahem'd as she baasked,
Then aartfully aasked,
Why aaren't we aarth pigs makin' bacon?"

This one was my attempt to squeeze as many ad- words as possible into one limerick:

An addicted adulterous dad
Adopted an admirable lad.
His adjunct adduced,
"each adult dad seduced
Had adored his adoptive dad ad."


Plug in socket's an AC supply
While for DC, then batteries apply.
If your high voltage needs
(For your dirtiest deeds)
are from AC and DC, you're bi.

Her teacher one night after class
Slipped an additive into her glass.
The spike in her drink
Perhaps leads us to think
That his mind's only track was "harass".

Acciaccatura is pronounced ac·CIAC·ca·tu·ra (with the attack on the CHACK).

Each acciaccatura sounds just before
Its principal note in the score.
Played lightly with pace
They ornament with grace,
Too slow, they're a dissonant bore.

Time for a chemistry lesson:

Most actinoids tend to decay
Through radioactivity. They
Are a group most unstable
At the base of the table.
Take notes; Tom will quiz us today.

There's U and Pu and Np,
And there's Th, No and Md...
Actinides, actinoids,
They're just different woids
For the group that begins with Ac.

(If you haven't heard Tom Lehrer's The Elements then your education is lacking.)

If you study acology you're
A student of remedies, for sure.
If you sang in the '80s
About killing Kuwaitis,
You must have discovered "The Cure".

To accumulate means to collect
or to grow over time. I'd expect
I could claim that we nerds
all accumulate words,
and nobody here would object.

The ontologist mused, "this abstractum
Is the thought of a thing, known post factum."
So he abstracted girls
Wearing nothing but pearls
With his idealized self to distract 'em.

View More Limericks

Limerick Dump

I've been writing limericks again. The weekend was spent coding up a limerick database for the OEDILF and transferring all the existing limericks. Here are my recent contributions:

"Making acid acetic dissociate
To its conjugate base, known as acetate,
Can be done with hydroxide,"
So the tutor-postdoc sighed
And yawned, "Pay attention. I'll demonstrate."

An aging and blind basset hound
Always barked as he bounded around.
He couldn't learn new tricks
But, using acoustics,
He echolocated by sound.

A shy, acrophobic canary
Made friends with the quail on the prairie.
When a finch in a tree
Propositioned him, he
Said "Your eerie, high aerie's too scary."

A height-fearing queen named Zenobia
Tried bungee for her acrophobia.
Odaenathus protested
and primly suggested,
"Tie your toga! The drop could disrobe ya!"

An act can be something you do,
A pretense or behaviour untrue,
Or a part of a play,
Opera, circus, ballet,
Or variety show or review.

An act is a formal decision
Made by a lawmaking division
Of government. Its reading
Is fruitful for pleading
Despite its pedantic precision.

An act of God's like an excuse
For disasters we deem too abstruse
To predict. But we're shy
To confront the Big Guy
'Cause we know He'll just blame it on Zeus.

Election time comes, and I flee.
Now tell me, sir, why should this be?
With counting by Diebold
No details can be told:
Abroad, I can vote absentee.

An ill wind will always betray
When Windy is walking our way.
We could perfume his jeans
When he's been eating beans
But it's best if we just stand abeigh.

If you want your shortcomings ignored
And your public approval restored:
If you smoke, don't inhale;
Keep your eyes off her tail;
And your finances all aboveboard.

You remember that pain in your head
After last night's consumption of red?
And you're still seeing double
But your brats are abubble
Squealing, "Come on, dad! Get out of bed!"

If you're lost and you need to retrace
all your steps you should do it with grace.
Don't stumble unknowing.
Please watch where you're going.
It's easy: you must about-face.

Vain artists assert that abstractions
Elicit emotive reactions.
Yet the man on the street,
Viewing art as concrete,
Will see randomness, noise and distractions.

In philosopher's parlance, abstraction
Extracts the idea from the action.
With eggheads I've seen
It also can mean
A mental state marked by inaction.

View More Limericks

Have I been quiet?

Yes. I've been very busy helping out with the OEDILF project. It
needs its own website and a way to manage the limerick submissions and

I expect there will be another large influx of contributors over the next few days. The project was written up in the Chicago Sun-Times. If the meme spreads wildly, this is going to be one chaotic management task in the short term.

edit: fixed spelling :(

Justin R. Timberlake is a double dactyl

Ogre-ly Ogle-ly
Justin R. Timberlake:
Found in Fiona's room
(But not by choice)

When Andrew Adamson
Placed a pop pun to the
Love of her voice.

For those who haven't seen Shrek 2, there is a poster of Sir Justin in Princess Fiona's (voice by Cameron Diaz) room: a wink at Cameron's current real-life romance with Justin.

Other Double Dactyls