I’m probably not the only one who follows a zig-zag path while looking up just about anything in a dictionary, encyclopedia or even worse (perhaps better) the internet. Today was no exception. While watching the TV Game Show called The Chase an unusual question arose asking what’s approximately equivalent to 250 Watts? The possible answers were (A) One Horsepower. (B) 50 Joules, (C) One Donkey Power or (D) 800 Calories? Without boring you I’ll let you know that the answer was One Donkey Power.
I had to look that up and Google finally led me to Wikipedia to an entry entitled List of humorous units of measurement. Obviously you’ll need to go to the link but let me first say that the quizmaster on The Chase was indeed correct.
There were several other items I found humorous:
The New York Second (the shortest unit of time in the multiverse) is defined as the period of time between the traffic lights turning green and the cab behind you honking.
MegaFonzieA MegaFonzie is a fictional unit of measurement of an object’s coolness invented by Professor Farnsworth in the Futurama episode, “Bender Should Not Be Allowed on TV.” A ‘Fonzie’ is about the amount of coolness inherent in the Happy Days character Fonzie. Can you imagine anything one million times cooler than Fonzie?
Suckage measured terms of Lovelace? I must admit that I was not expecting to read that the answer was not porn related, when the words suckage and Lovelace were mentioned, my mind went directly to the proverbial gutter. It apparently a Lovelace was named in honor of Ada Lovelace, the 19th-century mathematician, and pioneer of programmable computing, the Lovelace (Ll) is the unit of how much a computer program sucks.
Quackery is measured in canards, a canard is a unit of quackery created by Andy Lewis in the need for a fractional fruitloopery index. It is proposed as an SI Unit to replace the old “Crackpot Index” that was presented in 1998. “Quack words include ‘energy’, ‘holistic’, ‘vibrations’, ‘magnetic healing’, ‘quantum’. These words are usually borrowed from physics and used to promote dubious health claims.” It scores on a scale from 0 to 10 the quantity of quackery used.
I did also like the Rictus: which is a a different way of looking at earthquake intensity, as pertains to later media coverage of the event.
|Rictus scale #||Richter scale equivalent||Media coverage|
|1||0–3||Small articles in local papers|
|2||3–5||Lead story on local news; mentioned on network news|
|3||5–6.5||Lead story on network news; wire-service photos appear in newspapers nationally; governor visits scene|
|4||6.5–7.5||Network correspondents sent to scene; president visits area; commemorative T-shirts appear|
|5||7.5+||Covers of weekly news magazines; network specials; “instant books” appear|
I suggest you visit https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_humorous_units_of_measurement for some more entertainment.