15 thoughts on “Mercury

  1. Almost at random I dipped into the Great Courses series on world mythologies, and the first one was about the Titans and first Olympians in Greek myths. When the lecturer mentioned Uranus, though both the production’s onscreen text and the closed captioning spelled it that way, she was pronouncing it more like Ouranos, so the issue of how to avoid jokes never came up.

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  2. Isaac Asimov also pointed out in one of his science essays that the historically correct is more like “Urine-Us” than it is like “Your-Anus” — but he also noted that’s not a whole lot better either.

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  3. I’m pretty sure that the patient is not Patrick Stewart, but the resemblance was close enough to confuse me at first.

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  4. Since we’re talking about footwear and we’re on the Arlo page:
    (note “Boots” is a pharmacy chain in the UK)

    Guy goes into his local pharmacy
    “Have you got any condoms? I’ve got this bird who’s gagging for it, but she say’s I’ve got to wear a jimmy on me todger.”

    “I’m sorry,” says the pharmacist, “we’re all out. Maybe you should try Boots.”

    “Crikey!” says the guy. “I just want to shag her, not kick her to death!”

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  5. I also recall the Asimov remark that Shrug and Bill mention. I think the alternate pronunciation was described as just like the adjective “urinous”, making the point explicitly.

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  6. I have to admit that when I first saw ‘Mercury’ (before it was put on the Arlo Page), I thought it referred to Freddie Mercury; it’s been so long since I’ve thought about mercury in thermometers.

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  7. A very great Dylan song, that I have been “decoding” since maybe 1966,begins

    With your Mercury mouth
    In the Missionary Times

    No, it doesn’t have that many capital letters, but that helps bring out alternate readings

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  8. Speaking of mercury – I opened a small box (I’m just now unpacking 100s of totes shipped down from WI) and there was a small vial of . . . mercury. Why?? No idea. Anyone know how one disposes of this stuff?

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  9. Probably to recharge a barometer.
    Advice about disposal here? https://search.earth911.com/
    I tried for Tampa, FL, just typing “mercury” in the first box (didn’t bother about the newsletter), chose “items containing mercury” and typed the zip code (33601) in the next box and was offered the address of a disposal center nearby.

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