April 16, 2011

The Intransitive to Warn

PDF fileintransitive_warn.pdf
(3.8 MiB)

So far, I’ve managed to write at least one blog post per year, and 2011 shall be no exception. Leaving too many years between posts may cause your blog to seem abandoned—unless, of course, your audience is predominantly sponges (who may, in some cases, reach ages of several thousand years).

Only months after I read two Language Log posts on the topic of the intransitive use of to warn, we had a pertinent discussion in one of my English courses at the university. Later, the instructor asked me to write a little summary of the word’s usage; my abovelinked document is the result.

Please be so kind to use the comment section to comment or to apprise me of any mistakes you may find. Thank you.

February 12, 2010

Late Bill

PDF fileLate_Bill.pdf
(55 KiB)

Langston Hughes’s short story Early Autumn (and a few subsidiary factors) inspired me to write this humble sequel, entitled Late Bill. Feel free to share the file with whoever you like, but please give attribution. Criticism is always welcome.

Though it is not strictly necessary to have read Early Autumn, it is certainly a joy to do so. This (very short) work can be found here.

For proof-reading my text, a great Thank you! goes to Peter Stear, my instructor at the university.


October 2, 2009

“And moving through a mirror clear”

Autumn had come, so it was still dark outside when she entered the apartment. Inside, the bright bluish light lessened her melatonin production while she was wondering for a moment whether to take the first door or the second a little further down the corridor. The first one, however, only led into a vacant bathroom, so she approached the second one.

The absolute silence that shrouded her presence was inevitable rather than purposeful or even deliberate.

A muted chuckle grew imperceptibly louder.

Through the door the corridor opened into a room which, she surmised, was much bigger than it felt. Carefully avoiding little piles of computer hardware that littered the floor, she made her way across toward a desk, occupied by a laptop, and a chair in front of it, occupied by a person—the chuckle, it seemed, emanated from him. Soon the person’s eyes left the screen and, by that, the six hundred and forty second xkcd comic while the chuckle was fading. He turned around and beheld an empty room, for she was an incorporeal third-person narrator, invisible, impalpable. But she was not omniscient: Unknown even to her, in one corner of the room there leaned yet another third-person narrator, invisible, impalpable.

Though no less limited, he saw her and much later narrated this.

March 31, 2009


(Thanks to Andy Weir for the Planet Devourer, someone else for the raven and Poe for The Raven.)

October 23, 2008


(Thanks to Randall for the stick-figures.)

December 25, 2007

Unknown Symbol

Lately I have come across these two symbols and while I am of course pretty familiar with the left one, the other one is completely unknown to me. Unfortunately the albedo or reflection of my camera flash rendered the center of the image a bit indistinguishable but I hope the symbols are not that much affected by it. Maybe I will replace it with a better one in a few weeks when I again visit that place.
So long, have fun.

December 15, 2007

Less Insulation

For no clear reason I have decided to let go of some of my fears, now allowing search engines to index this blog. I do not really know what to do with it, but this seems to be quite a common Web 2.0 phenomenon, so whatever. Perhaps I will find some more of these enigmatic graffiti, as I happen to be kind of interested in them at the moment. And by the way, feel free to inform me of my spelling, grammar, etc. mistakes. I am German, eager to learn and of course going to correct them at once. Thanks.

December 12, 2007


Now that I have secured this blog against search engines and so on, I’m asking the total of probably zero readers whether they have any idea what (!=>)$&£(<=!) could possibly mean. Amidst a German speaking society there once stood a brave school desk, bearing this mark of a marker.

In case you are as helpless as I am, confronting this cryptoanalytic challenge, but not willing to bother about it, just view this post as some random first test post and then find serenity.