OPEN THREAD 20200328

Basically, all legal free speech is allowed. We will assist the authorities in dealing with illegal speech. You are each other’s moderators. Have fun. And don’t forget to MAGA at nuclear levels.

After going through the elements, we now enjoy a sequence of RANDOM somewhat pseudo-random topics that will be thrown out for investigation and commentary on each open thread. At some point, in a way something like composite numbers, I will accidentally hit a second occurrence of one of them – that’s just normal.

Have fun!

Citizen U

(a.k.a. W on the OTHER site)

Day 143 – Orange Peel

16 thoughts on “OPEN THREAD 20200328

  1. There are at least three different ways to go with “orange peel” —

    (1) Drywall finish. Nice article at because it goes into the time. Like herringboned corners in hardwood floors, orange peel drywall is from a certain era, but could certainly be brought back if you like it……except that nobody remembers how to do it any more. (Another “lost art” is terrazzo.) If you have to repair it, you can get fake orange peel in a can — (PS — when they say “low odor”, it’s not because it smells like oranges).

    (2) Orange peel as a culinary element. Also known as “orange zest”. Once you thoroughly clean the outside of an orange, you can use a zester to scrape off little twists of peel. More recently, you can use a microplane rasp as a zester. This is frequently used to garnish dishes (especially sweets) or in cocktails — though you can also find it incorporated into the interior of things.

    (3) Orange peel as the discarded part of an orange (the orange doesn’t have to be anywhere near as clean as one you zest). This is a prime candidate for composting.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. A class was asked to write a concise essay containing 4 elements: religion, royalty, sex, and mystery.

    The only “A+” in the class read:

    “My God,” said the Queen, “I’m pregnant! I wonder who did it?”


  3. When Solomon the Wise received the Queen of Sheba at his palace, he needed grand new thrones for him and for her.

    So by the power of the Seal of Solomon he summoned *djinn* and he said to them: Craft me a pair of thrones that shall be the wonder of all the ages, exquisite in both materials and workmanship and of a value surpassing all the treasures of the earth. And the *djinn*, bound under the Seal, bowed low and said: Wise and mighty king, it shall be as you desire.

    When the thrones were finished they were of a value surpassing all the treasures of the earth, and there are no words remaining in the tongues of men fit to describe their glory. Some may speak of the rare woods carved and shaped by the inhuman skill of the *djinn*, some of the gold inlay and some of the gems beyond price that studded their every curve, and some even of the glorious needlework to be seen in the very upholstery. What is certain is that the King himself, and the Queen who was his royal guest, were seated in majesty fit to honour the noblest royalty that ever were or shall be.

    At last the audience was over and the Queen returned to her own country, and Solomon the Wise took thought. For, he reasoned, though such thrones as these may have been fitting for such an affair of state as the visit of the great Queen of Sheba, yet they were not such as even the King of Israel might rightfully sit upon every day, lest overweening pride consume him and he forget the very wisdom that he had sought as a blessing from the Lord of Hosts. Therefore by the power of the Seal of Solomon the King summoned the mightiest guardian that it lay within his power to call upon, a prince of the *ifrit*, and to this one the King said: By the power of the Seal I charge you, take these thrones away with you to the City of Brass and place them forever beyond mortal reach, until I or another who wields the Seal shall call you again.

    And the *ifriti*’s jet-black eyes glimmered within his flame-red visage, but being constrained by the Seal he only answered: Wise and mighty king, it shall be as you desire. And he conveyed the twin thrones in that instant to his own dwelling in the City of Brass, forever beyond mortal reach.

    Years later as King Solomon the Wise felt the approach of old age, it came upon him that he would see the two thrones once again and recall for the last time the glory of his youth, and by the power of the Seal of Solomon he summoned the *ifriti* and said: Bring forth from the City of Brass the thrones that I charged you to keep. And the *ifriti*’s jet-black eyes glimmered within his flame-red visage, but being constrained by the Seal he only answered: Wise and mighty king, it shall be as you desire. In that instant he vanished from King Solomon’s throne-hall only to reappear moments later with the two thrones. But lo! both thrones blazed with fire, and in the instant they reappeared they collapsed into the ashes of many rare and precious woods, and the gold itself melted and the gems beyond price calcined to worthless powder.

    And the King said, Faithless *ifriti*, by the power of the Seal, what hast thou done?

    And the *ifriti*’s jet-black eyes glimmered within his flame-red visage, and he answered: Being constrained by the Seal, thy servant did as he was commanded, and took thy thrones to his own dwelling in the City of Brass. But lo! in that City the fire eternal rages, and thou, O King, neglected to command thy servant to make thy possessions fireproof. And while in the City of Brass the flame rages eternal but does not consume, the instant thy thrones returned to the mortal realms, they were burned as all things mortal must burn in fire.

    And the King knew that he had no claim upon the *ifriti*, who had done as he was bid and, being a proud and vengeful spirit, not one whit the more, and in a hollow voice declared the last piece of Wisdom of his long life:

    “People who live in brass houses shouldn’t stow thrones.”


      1. The search terms were “royalty jokes”. I read a few dozen and select 3-4 as being worthy of repeating. Frequently, they are in bad shape and need some cleanup. I’m looking for something with more meat than just a one-liner that is slightly transgressive, where the transgression drives the humor (instead of merely being for shock). Oh, and actually funny is helpful.

        Today, two of ’em were “shaggy-dog stories” — but I wasn’t especially seeking them out as shaggy-dog stories. They just made the cut.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Musical Interlude #2 —

    Little bit of fun — Brian May designed his own guitar. That’s why their classic albums said, “No Synthesizers!” — he was exceptionally proud of its abilities.


  5. Once upon a time, there was a trainee fortune teller called Sarah who hoped to learn the proper skills of divination by training alongside a renowned fortune teller, Madame Lointain (for, in these times, it was customary for each village to have a fortune teller).

    After having studied for many months and having completed all the necessary readings of varied tomes, Sarah was taught the most simple forms of fortune telling – reading the future from tea leaves in a cup, or the casting of chicken bones – but it wasn’t until two years of studying that she finally graduated to the most renowned tool of all fortune tellers, the crystal ball.

    Madame Lointain explained the process to her. First an old sack cloth needed to be laid across the table, then the crystal ball was placed on the cloth. Finally the fortune teller should touch the crystal ball lightly with the very tip of their fingers and allow the divination to flow through them. When this process was complete, the crystal ball would cloud before showing the user a vision of the future.

    Sarah followed the steps and touched the crystal ball. There was a tingling sensation, the ball clouded, and she had the briefest of visions of herself as a fortune teller in her own village.

    “Congratulations!” said Madame Lointain “You have passed the final test of fortune telling – the test of scrying – which means you are no longer a trainee but instead are a fully qualified fortune teller!”

    Sarah was extremely pleased and immediately returned to her village, where she began preparing her house for her new business. She bought candles and incense, she bought a one-eyed cat and a toad, and she bought a set of good china, and the finest crystal ball she could find. Then she went to the market stall, where traders from Eastern lands sold their wares, and looked for a cloth to go beneath the crystal ball.

    Sarah decided that an old sack cloth would look very shabby beneath her beautiful new crystal ball and instead found herself taken by a beautiful purple fabric on one of the stalls.

    “What kind of fabric is this?” she asked.

    “Why, you have an eye for quality,” said the trader with a smile. “For this is made from the finest milled silk. It is good enough for royalty in fact.”

    Well, that swayed Sarah completely and she purchased the fabric and completed the set up of her business. She was ready to open to the public, finally.

    To begin with, it was an immense success. She tossed chicken bones, she stirred tea leaves, but when she finally came to the climax of her display she found herself unable to see anything in the crystal ball. She strained, she pleaded inwardly, but it remained clear without a hint of cloudiness.

    Sarah made an excuse and gave her customer a refund, seeing them off with a smile, but was terribly worried. She was *sure* that she had done everything properly but it was no use, she was no longer able to scry. In floods of tears, she sent a message to Madame Lointain pleading for help and shut up shop while she waited.

    Three days later there was a knock at the door. Madame Lointain stepped inside and Sarah explained how she had lost the ability to successfully use the crystal ball.

    Firstly, Madame Lointain checked the crystal ball but it was in perfect working order. For a moment she was slightly bewildered as to what could be wrong, but then she noticed the purple fabric on the table beneath it.

    “Where is the sack cloth?” she asked.

    “Oh,” said Sarah, “I thought this was more beautiful. It is finest milled silk, good enough for royalty.”

    “Ah, well that explains it,” said Madame Longtain with a sigh.

    “It does?” asked Sarah.

    “Of course!” said Madame Longtain, “Haven’t you ever heard it’s no use scrying over milled silk?”


  6. Musical Interlude #3 —

    Brian May finally completed the work towards his PhD in astrophysics in 2007 — he had been in school for it in 1970, when he formed the band “Queen”. In the meantime, he’d earned millions, toured the world, become a CBE, and was regarded as one of the most famous and influential musicians on the planet…..but y’know, cross those t’s and dot those i’s.


  7. A Saudi prince wants to buy a bull, so he goes to see a famous Russian bovine breeder.

    The Russian tells him, “I have many good animal. Here is Swedish bull, is born black color, but color turns white when grows.”

    “Over there is American bull. Color when born is red, but become dark brown when full grown.”

    “And here, Turkish bull. They is born dark brown, but grow up to be light brown color.”

    The prince says. “I rather like the Turkish bulls. Fine specimens indeed.”

    “Excellent choice, your majesty. But Turkish bull is special. They is bred for royalty, like you. But if you have royal blood, you must be bonding with bull calf when young, before they change color. Or they will reject you.” The Russian explains.

    “Well”, the prince says, “I’m looking for a strong, adult bull. I’m not particularly interested in buying a calf. I rather like this big, beige bull over here.”

    The prince attempts to pet the large Turkish bull. It sniffs his hand, shakes its head in disgust, turns around and kicks the prince with its hind legs.

    The prince goes flying across the room and lands in a pile of hay.

    “Where did you get such a horrible beast?! Why did it kick me!?” He sputters.

    “I told you. From Turkey.” The Russian explains. “Is tan bull, can’t stand a noble.”


  8. No progress on the computer front — because, reasons…..

    And, now, a personal story…..

    I don’t, myself, eat oranges. Or drink orange juice. I actually like and enjoy limes and lemons, but oranges are right out. My parents had a great desire that I should consume and enjoy oranges (and this is long before I ended up with scurvy in Junior High School), and they bought oranges and orange juice to keep around the house. Until one day, when I was about four, my dad peeled me an orange with me saying, “I DON’T WANT IT”, stuck it in my hand, and told me that I was forbidden to put it down until I ate it — I’d get spanked.

    Twenty-seven hours later they let me throw it away. I haven’t had an orange since.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m the same way – I don’t like oranges, either, but here is a great way to enjoy them. Works nice for grapefruit, too.

      Peel and segment, COLD. Remove maximum fiber, especially fragments of core and inner skin inside the peel.

      Pour honey and/or sugar on the slices.

      Eat with a sharp knife and a fork, cutting into small bite sized chunks. Swirl in the honey and/or sugar to taste. Makes them almost like orange candy. No mess, no fuss, NONE LEFT.


        1. When I was 15, I went on a month-long summer trip to Europe with a college group. In a little cafe in the shadow of Il Duomo in Firenze, I had this little lunchtime cutlet of veal — perfectly grilled, with a little section of lemon and a little section of lime. Looked around, copied what I saw, squeezed ’em on, cut a piece and took a bite…..and fell in love.

          Liked by 1 person

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