A To Z Challenge – Z

april-challenge

Well, we have zigged, and zagged our way to the bottom of the alphabet.  It all comes down to Ground Zero, at zero hour, in zero gravity, with zero thought, to write the final composition for the letter

Letter Z

a letter that the Dutch explorers, traders and colonists already present, especially around the area that would become New York City, taught the newly arriving English settlers of America to pronounce as ‘zee’, a mere 400 years ago.  Think ‘Zuider Zee.’  The rest of the English-speaking world uses the Froggy French pronunciation, ‘zed’, imposed by the Norman invaders of England, almost a millennium ago.

For all you hockey nuts (and you have to be nuts to regard hockey as anything more than mildly interesting time-wasting), I thought that I would write about Zamboni.  That’s the ice-resurfacing machine that drives around the skating surface between periods.

Resurfice Machine

Then I thought better of it, and decided to give you a little more local history/geography/commerce. About 15 miles north of where I live, up in Pennsylvania-Dutch, Mennonite territory, is the large town/small city (10,000) of Elmira, Ontario.

Twenty-five years ago, the Schlupp family (doesn’t that name sound Mennonite?) reverse-engineered the Zamboni, and began producing Olympia machines at a company called Resurfice.  There are various sizes, and gasoline and electric models.  They will do what the Zamboni will do, at a better price – and they are Canadian-made.

They’ve had to fight the ‘Kleenex viewpoint’, which says that every facial tissue is ‘Kleenex’, even when it’s Puffs, or Royale, but their sales are steady, and increasing, even in the US.  Despite the Zamboni brand-name recognition, and allowing for some bragging, Resurfice sells 50% to 70% of machines in North America.

The ‘Kleenex viewpoint’ is visible in an online court brief, apparently posted by a relative of an idiot complainant trying to sue poor Resurfice.

Hanke was the operator of an zamboni
→ Overfilled the gas tank of the machine, releasing vapourized gas which was ignited by an overhead
heather
→ The ensuing explosion and fire caused Hanke to be badly burned
→ Hanke sued the
zamboni maker for negligence (design defect), arguing that the gas and water tanks were similar in appearance and close together on the machine, making it easy to confuse the two.

English rules of construction insist on the word ‘a’ before another word beginning with a consonant.  It should be ‘a Zamboni,’ with a capital Z – except, it wasn’t a ‘Zamboni’, it was a Resurfice Olympia.  The genius operator pumped water into the gasoline tank in an area with open flame.  His genius brother (cousin?) writes, in a court brief, of an ‘overhead heather’, and repeats the incorrect, uncapitalized ‘zamboni’ again.

If I have poked fun at places like Newfoundland, or Alabama, I humbly apologise, and acknowledge the existence of local possessors of ‘a glorious lack of sophistication.’

AtoZ Survivor

I thank all of you who have followed me through the alphabet. I’m trying to decide if it’s worthwhile or possible to do it again this/next year.  This free-style, pick-and-choose method didn’t work out as well as I’d hoped.  Perhaps next time I could do a themed version, possibly A to Z wild life, from Ants to Zebras. Wild life could include C for College dorm parties.  Or A to Z in musical groups, from AC/DC to ZZ Top.  In the meantime, I’m going to take a copy of that ‘Survivor’ image, and go have (another) nap.  I suggest you all do the same.  We’ve all earned some ZZZZZZs.   😀

Spamalot

Spam!  We all get it.  Many of us have done at least one post about it.  I haven’t yet, so it’s my turn.  I intend to make fun of some of the sillier ones I’ve received.  Not as technically proficient as many of you, I can’t cut and paste, so we’ll see who gets laughed at most, the spam, or me.

All spam is designed to sell something.  The sender wants you to go to his site, and usually spend money.  Some are sent only to increase the number of hits on the site so that the site-owner can charge advertisers higher rates.

I got one spam which told me that I was brain-dead, which was why I didn’t get more and better followers.  If I would just sign up and pay for this blog-writing course, I would get a much better grade of riff-raff visiting my site.  It might have been the same spammer, but soon after, I got another, accusing you, my faithful followers, of being brain-dead and leaving dumb comments.  If I would just sign up and PAY – well, you get the idea.  Thatta-way Genius, insult me and my friends and expect us to flock on over to your site.  Well, flock you!

certainly like your web-site but you need to check the spelling on several of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I in finding it very troublesome to inform the truth nevertheless I will definitely come back again

This one irritates the shit out of me.  My spelling is better than 95% of the population.  It’s often better than Spellcheck, which I run on the word program, and then again on WordPress before I post, after I proofread at least three times.  Rife??!  You said rife?  One word per post – maybe.  Stick *rife* up your asterisk.  By the way Kettle, Pot called and said your spelling, capitalization and punctuation leave something to be desired.  What I desire is….wuzzat?  I can’t post that word?  Physically impossible??!

Hi there, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or anything you can recommend?  I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any support is very much appreciated.

You “Own” a blog?  I got mine for nothing, but mine came with a shift-key so I can capitalize “I”.  I get a few inane spam comments, often from winners like you.  I let Akismet sift them out, and then I flush them down WordPress’s toilet.  The only protection or plugin I got, came from The Stag Shop.  I don’t think spam is driving you insane.  It’s more like a short putt.

Nice weblog here! Also your website quite a bit up fast! What web host are you the usage of? Can I am getting your associate hyperlink on your host? I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol

I am quite a bit up confused as to what you’re asking, and apparently I’m not the only one.  Look at my web address and you’ll see what web host I am the usage of, quite a bit up fast.  Perhaps there’s an English textbook that you could be the usage of.

Maybe if you include more photos and videos your article would be more understandable

Maybe once you put down the crayons, graduate from Kindergarten and learn to speak and write the language, you won’t need photos and videos.

I seriously love your website.. Great colors & theme. Did you make this website yourself? Please reply back as I’m hoping to create my very own site and would love to find out where you got this from or just what the theme is named. Kudos!

Really?  Great colors & theme?  On my site?  When did that happen?  Yes, I made this website all by my little self.  I carefully crafted it out of bellybutton lint and cat hair, held together with cobwebs pulled from my own skull.  Tip your skull down and read the theme at the bottom of the page.  Are Kudos those African antelope things?  You could use their fur and horns to build your site.  😕

I got an advertising spam from a furniture store specializing in sofas and chairs – in Sussex England.  They do realize I’m on another continent, don’t they?!  I wonder if they deliver, or if I’d have to borrow a dory from Ted at www.sightsnbytes.wordpress.com .  That would be a long row back.

I once got a two-page spam once urging me to purchase Viagra – so that some of the purchase price could go to a fund to save Asian tigers.  Yeah, right, that’s what I buy Viagra for, to save Asian tigers.  I got enough performance anxiety, without having to worry about dead tigers.  My own little tiger is dead.  😦

Several times recently, I’ve got one offering to help me save my possessions during a divorce – in French.  Since I don’t plan on being divorced in French, I think I’ll give that one a pass.

Search terms are almost as much fun.  I mentioned Mennonites in one post, and got the inevitable “Mennonite porn” search term.  I got “South African asteroid” one day.  I didn’t realize they had their own special asteroid.  I had used the word asteroid in a post about eight months ago, but that’s not the one the search term locked on to.  I had spoken of an asteroid which had come inside the orbit of the moon, now we have one which will arrive Friday morning and pass closer than the geosynchronous communications satellites.  Hopefully it doesn’t have any Mayans on board, and disappears back into the void.

End of silly rant!  Insert thunderous applause here!