I challenge anyone to try and make the sound of an elephant WITHOUT at the same time pretending your arm is a trunk and waving it up and down.

I’m pretty sure it’s impossible.


Via Wikipedia, an Autological word is one that expresses a property it also possesses.






While not not a perfect autological fit, the word “haemorrhaged” sure does feel close. It’s spelling feels like an uncontrolled diffusion of letters, like someone spelled it out and then the word suddenly self-erupted with a chaotic surplus of vowels and consonants.

I am quite confident that I will never properly spell haemorrhaged (also, often times spelled hemorrhaged (maybe more common in the US?)) without auto-correct.

Extra fun facts: the “ae” part of “haemorrhaged” spelling has Latin and Greek roots. The word comes from “haima” for bleeding violently and “rhage” for breaking. Add an R, change or remove the I, and switch the A with an O… Sure that all makes perfect sence.

Also, that “rrh” combination of letters? Not uncommon. Check out this impressive list:



On Saturday, Jen and I decided to splurge and take-out some pizza from Chow, a new place that just opened in Clinton. We ordered their Figgy Stardust pie and a traditional Margarita. “35 minutes!” they told us and, shortly thereafter, we zipped down to pick up the pizzas.

As I walked in, another guy was just paying for his order. The place was hoppin. The tables were all full and a bustling staff was rushing around providing drinks and foodstuffs to the patrons. The cashier looked up at me

“Hi,” I began, “I’m here to pick up a take-out order under DiDonato.”

She paused. Immediately it was obvious something was wrong. She glanced down at her computer, the slightest indication of concern furrowing her brow.

“I’m sorry, what was the name?”


After a few more moments, she called out to the man who had just paid before me, “Sir, can I take a look at your order please?”

“Yeah, of course.” The man was a little older than me. He wore a backwards baseball cap and had a friendly demeanor.

The waitress took his receipt and asked him “What name was your order under?”

“DeNotadi” The man replied

After a short laugh and a frustrating few moments amongst the staff, they finally determined that they had both orders in the system. Ours under DiDonato and his under “Shawn.” But we still had to settle out the payment as Shawn had already paid for my Pizza. The total had been $28.71

“I have cash. How about I just give you $30.00?” I suggested

“Actually,” he replied “I have a dollar. So here we go.”

I gave him the thirty bucks, and he gave me the dollar. Then, he turned to the cashier “Could I get change back for this five? I owe him 30 cents,” pointing to me.

“Oh, you don’t have to do that. It’s no big deal.” I offered

“Do you watch game of thrones?”

“I do…” I replied, mildly perplexed.

And as he dropped 30 cents into my hand he looked into my eyes and said: “A DeNotadi always pays his debts.”

Metric Prefixes

Metric prefixes sound a lot like Marx brother names. In fact, seven of the twenty common metric prefixes end in the letter “o”, which definitely helps*.  Here’s a list of the metric prefixes and, where applicable, the Marx family member whose name I think most closely matches its nomenclature.

1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000

1 000 000 000 000 000 000 000

1 000 000 000 000 000 000

1 000 000 000 000 000

1 000 000 000 000

Giga – See Groucho under “Kilo”
1 000 000 000

1 000 000

Kilo – Groucho. It’s a shame there aren’t more metric prefixes that start with “G” I felt obligated to choose Giga for one of the brothers, but “Kilo” seems to fit better for Groucho. The hard ‘K’ sound and the hard ‘G’ sound both have the back of the throat click which I think makes this comparison work.
1 000

Hecto – Harpo. An obvious choice here.
1 00

1 0


Centi – UGH. I’m torn on Chico. I’ve listed it for both Centi and Micro. Honestly, I think Micro is a better fit.

Milli – Minnie was the mother of the Marx Brothers

Micro – Chico, yes. This is a better fit.
0.000 000 1

Nano – Gummo. The “n” and “m” sounds are close enough that I think this works.
0.000 000 001

0.000 000 000 001

0.000 000 000 000 001

0.000 000 000 000 000 001

Zepto – Zeppo, a PERFECT choice. This fits better than any other
0.000 000 000 000 000 000 001

0.000 000 000 000 000 000 000 001


*Extra fun fact: I never realized that all metric prefixes that end in “a” are greater than 1. And ALMOST, all of metric prefixes between 0 and 1 end in “o”


Every once in awhile I get blindsided by some incredibly obvious piece of information that was at arms length for my life but was never grasped. Typically it’s because of an assumption made on my part either relating to words or designs.

One such case popped up for me just this past weekend relating to the clothes pin.


The two holes in the clamping part of the clothes pin? THOSE ARE DESIGNED TO GO AROUND THE CLOTHESLINE! That way the pin will pinch the clothes and not the line!!!


I never started using clothes pins until now because we’re hanging up J.Atlas’ clothes to dry. And despite being Extremely familiar with the design of a clothes pin (ever since making clothes pin reindeer in 2nd grade) I never thought to question its design.

I love revelations like this.