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CELTIC-L  November 2003

CELTIC-L November 2003


Re: Buttered-on-both-sides toast


Pamela Highet <[log in to unmask]>


CELTIC-L - The Celtic Culture List.


Mon, 10 Nov 2003 12:47:57 -0800





text/plain (395 lines)

Thanks Bruce!  Now THOSE were the days!  And I'd forgotten about the
dishclothed horse proposal, that still has possibilities!


 -----Original Message-----
From:   CELTIC-L - The Celtic Culture List.
[mailto:[log in to unmask]]  On Behalf Of Bruce Jones
Sent:   Sunday, November 09, 2003 6:34 PM
To:     [log in to unmask]
Subject:        Re: Buttered-on-both-sides toast

Martin Burns wrote:

> On 9 Nov 2003, at 23:15, Shae wrote:
>> Ok, for those of you who weren't here at the time, we're talking about
>> a
>> perpetual motion machine.  Cats always fall on their feet.  Buttered

> The point of which iirc was to power a laptop in pubs in remotest
> Ireland (obcelt), to write up reports and reviews for Celtic-L.

Close. That was step 2. The infamous "Buttered Kitty Incident" actually
began when Maqqi posted some serious statistics proving that the Irish
were not the large consumers of alcohol that popular legend holds true.
It shifted into a discussion of pubs and prices by Shae and further, by
others, into a discussion of pubs and computers. Why not, it was
reasoned, start a cyber pub with regular live postings to the web?
That's where the laptops/reports etc came into it.

After that, this is how it deteriorated:

Ken Ashe commented:
         Well, if we've got cybercafes out here, there's no reason you
shouldn't have cyberpubs back there (in Ireland). If Maqqi would front
you the money to start one up, he might even recoup his matching grant
to the Eigg fund.

Mikael responded:
The concept of a "cyber?pub" sounds wrong. It's sort of difficult to
describe, but a PC installed in a real Irish pub would probably have to
be a 286 machine with some old yuck spilt on it, or so. In many rural
pubs, for example the cigarette machines look like something that would
sell in an antiquities fair.
We cannot have a plastic thingie at too many MegaHertz, it has to be
adapted to the context of use and the environment ;?)

Martin wrote:
We're assuming it's running Lynx or some other text?only browser?
Or maybe the 1st version of Mosaic (much the same story).

Mikael suggests
It would be nice if it was peat?fired.

Dilion suggests
. . .  an "old hamster?driven wooden PC" including "the Difference
Engine with a monitor."

and further taunts:

You know, here in San Francisco, although I can't get a REAL Pint, I
*can* go to a pub with  Internet terminals and berate you people with a
pint in my hand.

to which Shea comments:

Well, if you think it might improve things..........

Martin wrote:
Probably better with an Apple Newton or eMate ? they're a HELL of a lot
more Guinness?proof.

Mikael adds:
Agreed! Or why not the Nokia 9000 Mobile phone/Web terminal...

Bruce suggests [in answer to to Dilionn's suggested Hamster-driven model]:
I think your problem here might be the power source. Hamsters are a tad
inefficient. I should think a cat would be much better.

A cat, you see, always lands on its feet, as everyone knows. Simply
attach a slice of buttered bread onto his back ? which everyone also
knows always lands buttered?side down.

Drop the dear kitty and the two effects will counteract each other in
such a manner as to spin from cat?side to buttered?bread?side with a
fairly high rate of rotation and neither will ever touch the ground.

Toss some kind of pick?up near the tabby's tail and you'd have all the
power you'd need. Perhaps enough to run a starship.
[Thus is born the thread with a life of its own - thanks Bruce)

It works even better if you use buttered toast with marmalade on it.
That REALLY wants to hit the carpet.

You read New Scientist too?

I was sorta building up to this.
You beat me to it!
Dirty rotten louser!

Pamela suggests:
Bruce, I maintain no dropped spinning buttered kitty running for two
weeks would produce the power of one partially?saddled horse which has
glimpsed a flapping dishtowel generates in about 30 seconds.  See
suggestions in this regard below.

Mind you, we'll have to stay at least 24 hours in each pub ? as the
morning pint can be quite different to the evening pint.
We should also try to get someone to donate a good notebook PC + modem +
mobile phone, so that we can maintain the web?site while working the pubs.

I submit to you that this proposal, and those which go before, border on
true genius.  I would also like to mention that *I* own a notebook PC
with modem which I plan to bring with me to Ireland next month.  It also
meets the requirement of being  old and spattered with food and drink.
And while it is a bit faster than a 286 which you suggested above, the
hard drive *is* fragmented and *is* cluttered with sentimental
correspondence which causes it to chunk and grind with indigestion ??
the perfect sound for a pub crawl ?? particularly in a country where you
must speak the language to find the appropriate downloading facility.

I plan to propose to my research committee, which has funded travel in
the US but not in Ireland, a cultural research project in the pubs in
the heart of Ireland.  Surely such a worthy project could not escape
healthy funding. Especially if the Netziens submit the cash you suggest
to the research project ?? an amount which I am certain would be fully

I further propose that an interested party in the US donate for
temporary use the mobile phone which would further this invaluable
research.  If those who are interested in donating to this research
would contact me privately about where to meet up prior to my departure
fore Ireland, I will assemble the hamster output specs as well as the
buttered kitty design.  In the meantime I will whip up some blueprints
outlining the productivity of the unsaddled dishclothed horse.  You,
Mikael, might meanwhile put together some figures regarding peat?firing
a brew?spattered laptop PC.

Do let me know if you plan to participate in this proposal.  It would
help to know if a cool head will be involved with this venture, as after
several pints of research, I might find myself dancing on tabletops.

Dilionn (in reply to Bruce's suggested buttered-kitty power source):

LOFL!!!!  (You know, you make a good point.  Perhaps we should put
buttered?toast & kitty power to use for lighting our cities!! Clean,
efficient...But what happens when the cat gets old and dies?  Does the
reaction continue, or does the dead cat fall?

Yeah, but cats have 9 lives, right?

Uhh ...  the critter spins so fast it enters another time dimension,
only appearing to still be here, thus living forever.

Jennie (who can't wait to see someone try to butter a kitty!):
I would be willing to donate my mobile phone, on the condition that *I*
accompany it!

You don't butter the kitty. You saddle it with a slice of buttered bread.

Just curious ? will any pickup do, or does it need to be a particular
make and model?    I am particularly fond of Rancheros and El Caminos,
but I wonder if a three?quarter ton "Jimmy" would do as well?

This is a GREAT question, especially since I was basing my calculations
on a one?ton model.  Do answer soonest, Bruce!

Also, some Ireland readers, do advise what sort of pickups you DO have,
or our calculations for forms of energy supplements to the peat?fired
laptop could be seriously skewed.

Irish pickups are scantily clad, weigh about 130 pounds and are found on
the corner of Leeson St. and Hatch St.

Well, this is a big problem.  I can see a pickup like this perhaps
sustaining the power generated by a peat fire.  It might even withstand
"some" spinning created by the buttered marmaladed doused dropped kitty,
although I have some doubts regarding proper attachment of the driveline
to the pickup.  No suggestions please.  I'm certain the pickup could
withstand the friction; I'm have doubts about the kitty's tail.

Alternative suggestions sincerely appreciated, as this research project
may bog down before anyone's had one sip or generated one watt of power.

Scott Robert Ladd:
Well! I never! <grumble, grumble, grumble>

You folks may be experts about spinning cats and toast, but you know
NOTHING about pick?up trucks! The "Rancheros" and "El Camino" are NOT
pick?up trucks ?? they are bastardized automobiles PRETENDING to be real
trucks. No self?respecting member of red?neck society would be caught
DEAD in one of those urban "pick?up cars!" Why, you can't even hang a
gun rack in 'em!

Now, a 3/4?ton Dodge RAM with a Vortec V?10, supercab and massive banks
of deer?shocking fog lights ?? THAT'S a pick?up truck!

[Warning, it's Friday afternoon, I'm very un?PC...]

Most pickups in Ireland are owned and operated by the Travelers
Community Groups, the vehicles known as "Hi?Aces". Perhaps you've heard
the famous song by Garth Brooks ? "I've got Friends in Hi?Aces..." It's
quite easy to engage the haulage industry in question: Just leave the
goods in some public place and they'll pick it up. The problem remains
that Heisenberg's Cat tend to partake in the equation: If you know that
your goods have been picked up, you never know where it's gone to, nor when.

Well, then obviously THESE pickups would not do for our power generation
scheme, as it is quite necessary to keep the
hamster?powered/buttered?kitty/dishclothed?horse/peat?fired pickup
continually providing power to the brew?spattered PC which maintains the
websight via Jenny's donated mobile phone whilst the team members
heroically continue their serious research and post hourly updates of
the results to the world at large, barring any interference caused by
crowded downloading facilities.

Which leaves us still woefully short of a proper pickup, not
withstanding the availability of the vehicle found on the corner of
Leeson and Hatch.

Well, I'd be happy to donate my 3/4 ton Ford F150 for the cause as well.
At least I'd have somewhere to sleep.

I have been reworking the calculations, and I am afraid that Irish pubs
may not be equipped with cyber connections as soon as we had surmised.
The buttered toast and orange marmalade factor is most effective, when
tied to the back of a cat.

What no one seems to have taken into consideration is the complex factor
of cities.   As my figures show, the assumption has been based on the
land surface factor as it existed in 1750, ACE.   Unfortunately this is
1997 ACE.   The earth's speed of rotation is slightly slower, largely
due to the wind resistance incurred by the construction of tall
buildings and other monstrosities.    As the speed of rotation has been
reduced, so has the gravitational force.    This is likely to cause one
of two potential outcomes:

1.      The spinning kitty will spin at a rate of speed such that it
will simply spin its way out of reach of the pickup contacts (unless we
can devise a swivel?and?winch system in time).

2.      The spinning kitty will spin at a rate of speed such that it
will remain in place, but will have such increased output that it will
overload the entire world wide network of computers. The net result will
be a world of fused computers and wires, along with a kitty suffering
from severe static electricity buildup.

I call upon the engineers and scientists of the Celtic?L list to put
their minds to an international effort to solve this crisis before it
can occur!

OBCELT:  if the technology works, Ireland may yet be the next greatest
world power!


hmmm ... maybe spinning Irish long?haired cats saddled with butter &
marmalade toast, wet down with Guinness. The initial oscillation of the
rapid kitty?side to buttered?side phase shift would be eventually
moderated by sympathetic resonance. I think the high rotational speed
would be moderated by the increased drag of the static erected fur aided
by a bearing free state of suspension.  A relatively large power output
would result even with the very low moment of inertia. The power thus
generated could be uplinked and sold around the globe via satellite.

Could work.  [:  )

True.  We should add THIS to the proposal for investigation, Ken.  Could
you work up some figures?  Do include some with slashes and triangles,
just to make them really complicated?looking . . . .

Bruce, [the above] did not address Norman's very real concern below:

"1.      The spinning kitty will spin at a rate of speed such that it
will simply spin its way out of reach of the pickup contacts (unless we
can devise a swivel?and?winch system in time)."

Bruce, do put your head into this problem.

Oh, but I did ? see above ? it is an elegant solution. [bearing free

The final product:
Mod. 2 Mk. 3 Dynomotor, Irish Kittitron, Variable Phase, Single Pick Up,
Bearing Free.

We're good to go.   [:  )

Done as directed.



deltas, etc. were not used out of respect for those whose systems
convert them to alt?codes

meow and raowr tend to be indeterminate, but are thought to be related
to the state of wakefulness of the subject (ok, dominant) feline.

GG is the constant of Guinness (used as a wetting agent, not that a cat
won't wet where it will) ?? also used as the international symbol for

L'H is obviously the hair length of the involved kitty. Normally
 >.25"<4". Fine tuning may be accomplished with clippers.

M = Kitty's mass ?? best taken at rest ?? may vary during the other four
to six hours of the day.

The assumptions were testing with the assistance of a grey mixed?breed
6?year?old with 1.5" (average) hair. Within 2 minutes, the pickup had
been transformed into a Greyhound bus. When the kitty spied the
Greyhound, there was a distinct possibility of overrevving, so the
experiment was terminated (drove the Greyhound around to the other side
of the house, out of sight of kitty).

Total energy released: in the order of 21.6 terajoules/sec.

Conclusion: A precisely?positioned constellation of counter?rotating
Kittitrons (tm, pat. pend.) could easily handle such tasks as alteration
of the earth's spin, starship drives, etc. Individual units on a smaller
scale would have no trouble accomodating household tasks such drilling
in caliche, or daiquiri?mixing.

Ken, your calculations are the work of obvious genius.  I'm certain
there will be no problem gaining funding for this project, barring
unforeseen kitty baldness, hamster lameness, dishcloth discrepancies,
peat shortages, or unscheduled haulage in an "Hi?Ace."

Perhaps the biggest question left is, in which Irish pub shall this
great venture begin?

    my Lady Bridget, my extremely elegant Siamese (who has attended
only the finest finishing schools) is becoming extremely offended at
this continuing discussion about buttered/spinning cats and other
riffraff.  as she rarely deigns to say anything at all (unlike her less
than elegant brother) and is amazingly awesome when angry i thought i
should pass this warning on to the list.  i should not like to be the
one who inspires her ire.

... Oh, by the is a message from Temujin, Sterling, Sabbath
(Black Sabbath), O. C. Lott, Dickens, Myrrh, Frankie (Frankincense),
Willow, Huny, Sundance and Butch...our nine inside and two outside

My mostly?Siamese, also named Bridget, is disgusted.  Her friend
Nightfall, who is a reincarnation of James Beard, is appalled. Last
week, when this thread began, they took an NRA course on personal
handgun training.  Their paper plates, despite the fact that both cats
used up their boxes of 100 shells, had only one hole each.  Born
gunfighters.  Nightfall is preparing a dinner of artichoke pasta and
brie, with garlic and fresh basil??content in the knowledge that they
are safe from this hoard of heartless internet pranksters.  He is
formidable in his shoulder holster and apron.

As formidable as your description, I'm sure.  Any kitty who is a
reincarnation of anyone is of interest.  Do ask Nightfall if he'll work
for minimum wage, bullets, and access to a gourmet kitchen.


That was pretty much it, verbatim. Now this new buttered-both-sides
variation CAN enter into it but it's so much more fun with the cat. Hows
about if we just skip the toast and butter the kitty.... [; )


Bruce L. Jones
The Mojave Desert - The Geographic Center of Nowhere

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