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March 12, 2011

Overnight Open Thread

A Brief History of Time:

Daylight Savings Time that is.

"The idea of daylight saving was first conceived by Benjamin Franklin (portrait at right) during his sojourn as an American delegate in Paris in 1784, in an essay, "An Economical Project."

Some of Franklin's friends, inventors of a new kind of oil lamp, were so taken by the scheme that they continued corresponding with Franklin even after he returned to America.

The idea was first advocated seriously by London builder William Willett (1857-1915) in the pamphlet, "Waste of Daylight" (1907), that proposed advancing clocks 20 minutes on each of four Sundays in April, and retarding them by the same amount on four Sundays in September. As he was taking an early morning a ride through Petts Wood, near Croydon, Willett was struck by the fact that the blinds of nearby houses were closed, even though the sun was fully risen. When questioned as to why he didn't simply get up an hour earlier, Willett replied with typical British humor, "What?" In his pamphlet "The Waste of Daylight" he wrote:

"Everyone appreciates the long, light evenings. Everyone laments their shortage as Autumn approaches; and everyone has given utterance to regret that the clear, bright light of an early morning during Spring and Summer months is so seldom seen or used"

It all seems so clear now. This was just a money-grubbing scheme by Big Lamp Oil. I'm quite certain that Halliburton and the evil Mr. Cheney were involved as well.

Water resistant to 50 meters. 10000 year warranty. Stylish brushed nickel band sold separately.

Old ONT Business:

On last night's ONT I posted this trivia question below the 1980s McDonald's BMX commercial:

One month free subscription to the ONT and a tasteful certificate of merit (suitable for framing) to the first person who can identify a certain phrase in the commercial that was later used in a a Quentin Tarantino film.

It appears that the winning answer was provided first by "SaintGeorgeGentile" at comment #273, which is "From Dusk Til Dawn." (The phrase in common is "mean motor scooters" and was uttered by George Clooney in the film.)

Congratulations "SaintGeorgeGentile!" Please contact the AceCorp Marketing and Mind Control division to claim your prize.

Online Etch-a-Sketch:

Here ya' go

Time-waster, but it is actually hosted by Ohio Art, the company that makes the damned frustrating things. It has the two annoying dials but don’t worry about those…they no worky…just there for show.. Instead, you use the arrow keys on your keyboard. One other drawback is that when you give up in a fit of rage and clear the screen, it doesn’t make that satisfying “shakey” sound. Nor does it make that other satisfying breaking sound when you throw it at the wall. I suppose you could throw your monitor at the wall if that’d make you feel any better.

One final drawback is that you can’t save your masterpiece to a gallery, though you can print it. I bring it up only because the Online Lite Brite thingy I posted last night lets you do so. Did anyone actually try that out btw? I haven't bothered to go look yet.

If you're too damned lazy to do your own Etch-a-Sketch masterpiece, George Vlosich III is supposedly the top dog at it. For example:

An Excellent Documentary Film About Stonehenge:

Happy Khaturday!

By popular and screechy demand:

Even more khat goodness at Wikipedia.

Notice: Posted by permission of AceCorp LLC. Please e-mail overnight open thread tips to Otherwise send tips to Ace.

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posted by Genghis at 10:33 PM

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