Where do New Caledonian crows live?
How can I determine my favorite color?
What was the Enlightenment and how did I miss it?
Where did they put Düsseldorf?
Is a rondeau funnier than a sonnet?
If I adopt a Russian wolfhound, do I have to learn Russian?
Which comic-book hero didn’t have a tragic backstory?
Was James Joyce on drugs or what?
Is violating the Geneva Convention really all that bad?
- Turning off the television.
- Unplugging and removing the amplification system from a concert hall.
- Correcting backwards apostrophes at the beginnings of words in signs and advertisements.
- Reeducating practitioners of “contemporary Christian music.”
- Teaching writers of popular lyrics the principles of rhyme.
- Using a fast shutter to capture a waterfall, in defiance of the motion-blurring convention of every inspirational poster in the dentist’s office.
- Teaching an art student to draw.
Willa de Wispe as the National Debt in Heyser’s ballet “Principles of Keynesian Economics for the Twenty-First Century.”
Sir Isaac Newton, inventor of calculus, discoverer of the laws of gravitation, and world-class alchemy crank.
I’ve been enjoying learning about different types of cranks! Is there a word for this study?
It is a very interesting question because there does not seem to be a good answer. If you ask the Internet at large for a word for “the study of cranks,” nothing obvious comes up.
When there is no obvious term, we make one up ourselves. What would we call a “crank” in Greek? Perhaps “false prophet” would be the best equivalent in meaning. A false prophet is a ψευδόμαντις, so we might call the study of cranks pseudomantology—a word that seems to be available, since a Google search finds not a single instance of it on the Internet. It is distinctive and memorable, and it will—thanks to our correspondent—be Dr. Boli’s term for this discipline from now on.
Every month, on the third Thursday, at precisely midnight, a 1948-vintage PCC car arrives at the Drake loop, though the Drake line has been out of service since 1999. It discharges one passenger and returns whence it came. The passenger then drives away in a 1948 Nash coupe, which no one can remember having seen parked there before. It is possible that the mystery might be solved if someone interrogated the passenger before he got into his Nash, but no one in Upper St. Clair wants to be that rude.
In spite of highly paid programmers and nearly four decades of refinement, every iteration of the Microsoft Windows operating system is less efficient than the previous one.
Measured as the crow flies, the distance from Akron to Cleveland is detectably longer than the distance from Cleveland to Akron. Ornithologists have not been able to explain why crows fly this way, unless they are drunk.
During the late twentieth century, thousands of previously sedentary nouns were turned into verbs by unaccountable social forces.