Lost and Found

Hiram de Witt, of this town, who has recently returned from California, brought with him a piece of the auriferous quartz rock, of about the size of a man’s fist. On thanksgiving day it was brought out for exhibition to a friend, when it accidentally dropped on the floor, and split open. Near the centre of the mass was discovered, firmly embedded in the quartz, and slightly corroded, a cut-iron nail of the size of a sixpenny nail. It was entirely straight, and had a perfect head. By whom was that nail made? At what period was it planted in the yet uncrystallized quartz? How came it in California? If the head of that nail could talk, we should know something more of American history than we are ever likely to know.

— “Springfield (U.S.) Republican,” quoted in The Latter-Day Saints’ Millennial Star, March 1, 1852

Mouth Fun

Say aloud:

Whittle it a little, it’ll fit.

A noisy noise annoys a noisy Noyes.

The Icelandic sentence Barbara Ara bar Ara araba bara rabbabara, besides being fun to say, is spelled with only three letters. It means “Barbara, daughter of Ari, brought only rhubarb to Ari the Arab.” (Thanks, Sigurður.)

“Lides to Bary Jade”


The bood is beabig brighdly, love;
The sdars are shidig too;
While I ab gazing dreabily,
Add thigkig, love, of you.
You caddot, oh! you caddot kdow,
By darlig, how I biss you–
(Oh, whadt a fearful cold I’ve got! —
Ck-tish-u! Ck-ck-tish-u!)

I’b sittig id the arbor, love,
Where you sat by by side,
Whed od that calb, autubdal dight
You said you’d be by bride.
Oh! for wud bobedt to caress
Add tederly to kiss you;
Budt do! we’re beddy biles apart–
(Ho-rash-o! Ck-ck-tish-u!)

This charbig evedig brigs to bide
The tibe whed first we bet:
It seebs budt odly yesterday;
I thigk I see you yet.
Oh! tell be, ab I sdill your owd?
By hopes — oh, do dot dash theb!
(Codfoud by cold, ’tis gettig worse–
Ck-tish-u! Ck-ck-thrash-eb!)

Good-by, by darlig Bary Jade!
The bid-dight hour is dear;
Add it is hardly wise, by love,
For be to ligger here.
The heavy dews are fallig fast:
A fod good-dight I wish you.
(Ho-rash-o! — there it is agaid —
Ck-thrash-ub! Ck-ck-tish-u!)

— Charles Follen Adams



Germany Schaefer stole first base. On Aug. 4, 1911, playing for the Washington Senators, Schaefer stole second base conventionally, hoping to draw a throw from the catcher so a teammate could steal home. The catcher didn’t throw, so on the next pitch Schaefer ran back to first.

That was legal at the time, but rule 7.08i now forbids a player to run the bases in reverse order “for the purpose of confusing the defense or making a travesty of the game.”

Government Work

Andy is a lazy census taker. He sits in the doorway of his house and counts each pedestrian who walks by.

“That’s no way to do it,” says Bill. He leaves the house and walks up and down the street, counting each person he passes.

After an hour he returns to the house and the two compare totals. Was Bill right? Assume all pedestrians walk at the same speed.

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