As we were eating dinner, the conversation abruptly changed to the topic of buccaneer dermatology.

4-year-old: Do pirates itch?
Me: I don’t know. Why do you think pirates would itch?
4-year-old: Because I don’t think they have lotion.

I didn’t follow this up with another question, but I sure do wonder what got her thinking about pirates’ lotion.

Of course, I had to google “scurvy symptoms” to see if being a scurvy sea dog would entail itching. It would not.

Charity – a Play in 7 Lines

4 year-old: When can I have a sleepover?
Me: When you’re older.
4 year-old: Why?
Me: Well, you still need help wiping your bottom, and that’s for mommies and daddies to do.
4 year-old: I can wipe my own bottom.
Me: Then why do you ask us to do it?
4 year-old: Well, because I love you guys and I like to share.

Fun with Retinas!

I made a weird discovery the other night. As per the Scientific Method, here are the steps for duplicating my results, which I’ll describe at the end:

  1. Be in the dark. I had a bit of ambient moonlight coming in from a window, but it was pretty dang dark when I did this.
  2. Wait until your eyes have fully adjusted to the darkness. I had been trying to sleep for a while, so I can’t say how long it really takes to get fully “adjusted”. Probably not very long at all.
  3. Fix your eyes on one spot, and don’t move them. In my case, I was looking at the bathroom counter for some melatonin drops, because I couldn’t sleep, as just mentioned. (Being unable to sleep is not necessary for performing this experiment.)
  4. Flip on the light without moving your eyes from their spot. Count to two. Flip it back off. I didn’t want to wake up my wife from her blissful slumber. (I didn’t actually count, myself, but I’m guessing it was about a two-count that I had the light on.)
  5. Still don’t move your eyes. Wait. There will be that wave of blindness that passes, where you could actually see less than when you started with adjusted eyes.

And here is the result: it will seem, as you stare at your fixed spot, that the lights are coming on, however dimly. You will be able to see everything as if you had some sort of magic night vision. You may even wonder if this is how bright the room was before you started, but you’ll know it’s not.

The instant you move your eyes, however, the illusion will vanish. The room really is dark, and you don’t have your adjusted vision back yet.

As you perform this experiment repeatedly, remember that your neighbors may be seeing your light flicking on and off. The next day, as they ask you over the fence what was happening, you can tell them you were trying to disorient a mouse before you caught and ate him. Or you can send them the web address to this blog entry.

If you find this procedure is useful for disorienting and catching mice you intend to devour, then you’re a weirdo. Seriously, get some help. I’m sorry if it seemed like I was encouraging you.

More support of my Lost-nanites theory…

http://randytayler.livejournal.com/27716.html is where I started my theories on Lost’s Nanite Island.

Now then! Let us consider the death of Ruskie One-Eye, and his surprising return.

He didn’t die — but it killed the nanites in him. Oh, what a mess that made of him.

He said “Thank you” — not because he was dying necessarily, but because he was finally freed from the nanites!

Some folks get innoculated to the nanites that live outside the Others’ compound. Ben and Claire were able to visit Ruskie without issue — but the reason he lives (lived) off in the distance like he does (did) is because he’s INFECTED.

Not with the black-cloud rogue nanites, necessarily, but with nanites, period. And they’re dangerous buggers! What makes them go rogue? Who knows?

Either Ruskie healed of his own accord, or else the Others found him, and helped heal him with a dose of safe nanites. I think it’s the former — otherwise why would he be treading the jungle by himself?

Now, the good nanites can cure cancer, right? But Ben has cancer! But then, Ben was innoculated against the bad nanites at some point — how else could he have safely tread through the jungle to the Survivors’ beach?

Presumably he got innoculated just before he left the compound; otherwise he wouldn’t have been so surprised by the discovery of the tumor.

In other trivia, why did the world hear that the Oceanic flight was discovered? Because Dharma had to cover up the crash, of course. They have to keep their island a secret. (And not necessarily out of greed or malice — “Them nanites are dangerous,” as they say in Kentucky.) So they dropped some wreckage in the ocean, “found” it, and crews came and found no survivors. Not too hard to do.

What about Penny’s helicopter? Why did it crash?

I dunno, but maybe there are nanites that far out from the island, and who KNOWS what they would do to electronics.

That’s why food gets air-dropped from a great distance, and why they approach via submarine. Those dang nanites!

My other theory is that the Black Cloud is actually Venom, who exploded.

My guess on Spider-Man 3’s plot…

Have you seen these trailers? Yeesh! How many villains can they cram into one movie?

(I suppose Ocean’s 13 is going to try to answer that for us.)

So how will they fit Sandman, Venom, AND the Hobgoblin into this film?

I’ll tell you now, using my screenwriting degree, keen grasp of story-structure, and these here tea leaves. If this spoils anything, it’s only because I’m so good at guessing; I have no actual information outside of the trailers we’ve all seen.

We’ll open with an exciting chase scene as cops go after Sandman, who escapes but gets his delightful Sandmanian powers. Then we move on to Peter and Mary Jane’s blissful relationship, and Peter telling Aunt May he’s going to propose.

But oh no! The cops have this Sandman guy on the loose, who was Uncle Ben’s REAL killer. Peter needs to find him.

In the process he meets the Black Goo, and Topher Grace, and probably has his first run-in with Hobgoblin.

Peter’s vengeful heart has left him open to the black goo’s influence, and he gets his new outfit. He goes after Sandman and kills him

J’catch that? No more Sandman, by halfway through the movie! THAT’S how they fit the other two villains in.

While he is Black Spidey, he has a run-in with Hobgoblin, and nearly kills him, but stops himself, realizing that the power and vengeance has darkened his soul.

He has to get rid of the suit if he’s going to save his own soul. He does, but it ends up in the hands — or ON the hands — of Topher Grace, who has been slighted by Spidey. Topher becomes Venom.

And then we have a big final fight scene where Hobby and Spidey work together to defeat Venom, Hobby having overcome his own lust for vengeance.

Oh, and throughout, there’s some stuff with Mary Jane. I dunno. They have relationship trouble and get back together.

My Grand Unified Theory of Lost: Nanites!

If you’re not a Lost-watcher, then you won’t understand a thing I’m saying. Skip this entry so I don’t need to give you back your time.

So, yeah. Nanites. It pretty much says everything.

Some mysteries on the show:

  • Locke’s spinal injury was healed.
  • Things like Kate’s horse, Jack’s dad, Eko’s brother, and even Walt keep appearing.
  • There’s a big black cloud that can pick a person up and smash him around; it probably also grabbed the pilot from the cockpit in the first episode.
  • The Others wanted to innoculate Aaron, Clair’s baby.
  • The original hatch was marked “Quarantine”, on the inside going out.
  • Ben says there’s a box that whatever you imagine appears inside.

No matter the relationship between the Dharma Initiative and the Others (the show would have us believe that they’re not the same group), the real mystery is the supernatural stuff. And nanites answer pretty much all the questions.

Nanites are everywhere on the island. And the nanites are attuned to our minds.
They favored Locke at the crash site and healed his spine — they’re pretty fast workers.
They can take the form of whatever they need to.
There are some particularly rogue nanites in the form of the big black cloud.
Because of their unpredictability, though, the Others play it safe and get innoculated or wear gas masks.
So Jack saw his Dad. Eko saw his brother. Everybody saw Walt. Maybe the polar bears were legitimate bears the Others had in their Others cages, but that was on a different island, so they’d need to have been brought across to this island and released. So maybe the bears are more nanite manifestations, too.

And here’s the clincher! The writers want to keep this answer a secret, because this answer is kinda lame.

I don’t know why I keep watching. I think I’m gonna finish this season and call it quits.

That’s certainly what I’m doing with Prison Break.