Every Contact Leaves a Trace

February 18, 2015

In forensic science, Locard’s exchange principle (sometimes simply Locard’s principle) holds that the perpetrator of a crime will bring something into the crime scene and leave with something from it, and that both can be used as forensic evidence. Dr. Edmond Locard (13 December 1877 – 4 May 1966) was a pioneer in forensic science who became known as the Sherlock Holmes of France. He formulated the basic principle of forensic science as: “Every contact leaves a trace”. (Wikipedia)

We Say, Yet I Sense

February 5, 2015

A white peony
We say, yet I sense
Faint pink

—Kyoshi Takahama

In Kyoshi’s garden in Kamakura, there were three peony trees. Two were scarlet and the third was white. He especially loved the tree of white peonies. When they were blooming, he was enchanted with them. Kyoshi thought that while the scarlet peonies had a spellbinding attractiveness, the white peonies were extremely graceful and sublime.

As he continued to admire his white peony, Kyoshi came to realize that the flowers pristine loveliness was heightened by the faintest tinge of pink. This roseate shading served to enhance the white blossoms innate charm and grace.

There is a beautiful rhythm in this haiku. It starts with six syllables which give the poem a soft tone. These syllables are followed by the slow and elegant seven hiragana which seem to echo the swaying petals of the peony. The subtle tenor of the last five syllables then offers us an image of faint but bewitching pink in the heart of the white flower. 

(From Kyoshi Takahama’s haiku poetry collection ‘One Hundred Haiku of Kyoshi’ selected by Inahata Teiko and translated by Nagayama Aya on kyoshi.or.jp)


Bic Four Colour Retractable Ballpoint Pen

February 5, 2015

The four-colour retractable ballpoint pen by Bic.

Color Walk

February 5, 2015

Take a color walk. Give yourself at least one hour of uninterrupted time. Do not plan your walk in advance or combine it with other activities (commuting, shopping, etc.) Try not to talk or interact with other people during this time. You will not need to bring a cell phone, journal, camera or iPod. You will not be graded or evaluated on your color walk.

You can begin your color walk anywhere. Let color be your guide. Allow yourself to become sensitized to the color in your surroundings. As you walk try to construct a color story or a narrative based on the color you observe. What are the colors that you become aware of first? What are the colors that reveal themselves more slowly? What colors do you observe that you did not expect? What color relationships do you notice? Do colors appear to change over time? We will discuss the color walks in our next class.

(By Munro Galloway, inspired by William Burroughs)

January 4, 2015

Perhaps the Japanese have a traditional allegiance to non-expressive sound. Composer Toru Takemitsu thought so: “As a people who developed the concept of ‘attaining Buddhahood in a single sound’, the Japanese found more meaning in listening to the innante quality of sound rather than in using sound as a means of expression. To them natural sound or noise was not a resource for personal expression but a reflection of the world.” A thousand years ago the Japanese were wrtiing poems about the songs of cicadas: “If a jewel of dew could sing, it would tinkle with such a voice!”

—Clive Bell, revieiwing Junko’s Noise of Voice for The Wire; January 2015, Issue 371

December 13, 2014

Over the course of Scooby-Doo’s various spin-offs, various relatives of Scooby were introduced:

Scrappy-Doo: Scooby’s young nephew (and son of Scooby’s sister Ruby-Doo), Scrappy is the bravest of Scooby’s relatives. Scrappy became a recurring character in the Scooby-Doo series beginning in 1979, and was noted for being quite headstrong and always wanting to face off in a fight with the various villains (unlike his uncle). He has one or two catch phrases, the one he uses the most is “Puppy Power!” Scooby and Shaggy were present at Scrappy’s birth.

Yabba-Doo: According to Scrappy and Yabba-Doo Yabba is Scooby’s brother, a white dog owned by Deputy Dusty in the American Southwest. Unlike Scooby, Yabba is brave. Unlike Scooby’s and Scrappy’s, his typical custom catchphrase at the end is “Yippity-Yabbity-Doooo!!!” (and not “Yabba-Dabba-Doo!”, presumably due to another Hanna-Barbera character’s usage of that phrase).

Scooby-Dum: Scooby’s cousin (according to Shaggy in “Headless Horseman of Halloween), a blue-grey dog. A Mortimer Snerd-esque dog who longed to be a detective. Was rather dimwitted (he would keep looking for clues even after the mystery was solved). His catch-phrase was also different then Scooby’s and Scrappy’s. Instead of “Scooby-Dooby-Dum” his typical custom catch-phrase is “Dum dum Dum DUM!”, an intoning the opening four notes of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, which he would do after someone said the word “clue”.

Scooby-Dee: Scooby’s distant cousin, a white dog. Spoke with a Southern accent, and was an actress.

Dooby-Doo: Scooby’s cousin, a singer. He is one of Scooby’s few relatives to have hair on his head. Only appeared in “The ‘Dooby Dooby Doo’ Ado”.

Momsy and Dada Doo: Scooby’s parents. His mother is the only one who calls himby his full name, “Scoobert”.

Whoopsy-Doo: Scooby’s cousin, a clown. Owned by Shaggy (Norville)’s uncle, Gaggy Rogers.

Ruby-Doo: Scooby’s sister, and mother of Scrappy-Doo.

Skippy-Doo: Scooby’s brother. Highly intelligent; he wears glasses.

Howdy-Doo: Scooby’s brother. Enjoyed reading supermarket tabloid newspapers. He appears to become a redhead.

Horton-Doo: Scooby’s uncle. Interested in monsters and science.

Dixie-Doo: Scooby’s cousin and the pet of Betty Lou, Shaggy’s Southern cousin.

Grandad Scooby: Scooby’s grandfather.

Great-Grandpa Scooby: Scooby’s great-grandfather.

Yankee-Doodle-Doo: Scooby’s ancestor. He was owned by McBaggy Rogers. He also appears to be a pilgrim. Little is known about him.

Spooky-Doo: Scooby’s uncle. He was the former owner of Doo Manor.


December 13, 2014

Scooby-Doo, Where Are You! episode formula:

1. The Mystery, Inc. gang is driving in the Mystery Machine, returning from or going to a regular teenage function, when their van develops engine trouble or breaks down for any of a variety of reasons (overheating, flat tire, out of gas, etc.), in the immediate vicinity of a large, mostly vacated property (ski lodge, hotel, factory, mansion, cruise ship, etc.).

2. Their (unintended) destination turns out to be suffering from a monster problem (ghosts, Yetis, vampires, witches, etc.). The gang volunteers to investigate the case.

3. The gang splits up to cover more ground, with Fred and Velma finding clues, Daphne finding danger, and Shaggy and Scooby finding food, fun, and the ghost/monster, who chases them. Scooby and Shaggy love to eat, including dog treats called Scooby Snacks which are a favorite of both the dog and the teenage boy.

4. Eventually, enough clues are found to convince the gang that the ghost/monster is a fake, and a trap is set (usually by Fred) to capture it; or, they may occasionally call the local sheriff, only to get stopped by the villain half-way.

5. If a trap is used, it may or may not work (more often than not, Scooby-Doo and/or Shaggy falls into the trap and/or they accidentally catch the monster another way). Invariably, the ghost/monster is apprehended and unmasked. The person in the ghost or monster suit turns out to be an apparently blameless authority figure or otherwise innocuous local who is using the disguise to cover up something such as a crime or a scam.

6. After giving the parting shot of “And I would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for you meddling kids” (sometimes adding “…and your stupid dog!”), the offender is then taken away to jail, and the gang is allowed to continue on the way to their destination.

December 13, 2014

Furbish is the Furbies’ language, with simple syllables, short words, and various sounds. A newly purchased Furby starts out speaking entirely Furbish. Over time, the Furby gradually replaces Furbish words and phrases with English.

  • wee-tah-kah-loo-loo: Tell me a joke.
  • wee-tah-kah-wee-loo: Tell me a story.
  • wee-tee-kah-wah-tee: Sing me a song.
  • u-nye-loo-lay-doo?: Do you want to play?
  • u-nye-ay-tay-doo?: Are you hungry?
  • u-nye-boh-doo?: How are you?
  • u-nye-way-loh-nee-way: Go to sleep now.
  • u-nye-noh-lah: Show me a dance.


Furbies may say these Furbish words:

  • doo?: What? (Furbies say this when called)
  • doo-dah: Yes. (Furbies say this in response to a command before doing it.)
  • boo: No. (Furbies say this when they do not want to carry out a command.)
  • yoo?: Why will you not play with me today? (This usually means the Furby is upset.) (Wikipedia)
December 10, 2014

The flowers of the hibiscus mutabilis transform from white to dark pink in the course of a day.

November 10, 2014

Young flamingos hatch with greyish reddish plumage, but adults range from light pink to bright red due to aqueous bacteria and beta-Carotene obtained from their food supply. A well-fed, healthy flamingo is more vibrantly colored and thus a more desirable mate; a white or pale flamingo, however, is usually unhealthy or malnourished. Captive flamingos are a notable exception; many turn a pale pink as they are not fed carotene at levels comparable to the wild. (Wikipedia)