Category Archives: unnecessary

National Paper Airplane Contest

So, if you remember, I backed the PowerUp 3.0 project on Kickstarter and got myself a fancy motor for paper airplaine.  Shai, who ran the project, has sent out an e-mail that John Collins, the world record holder for distance flying, has launched a Kickstarter project for a National Paper Airplane Contest.  I dare you to look me in the eyes and tell me there isn’t a little kid inside you that would totally participate at the local preliminaries…

Scroll down on the Kickstarter page to see Conan O’Brien interview Mr. Collins, who demonstrates a few planes on the show.  They also show the world record throw.

As for my paper airplane propeller, I still don’t have a phone that can run the app, so I handed it to our apprentice for Christmas break.  He had some fun with it, though he recommends using it outside.  Relevant quote: “Minus two ornaments.”

Giant Pumpkins

I’ve previously posted about my chemist’s brother’s giant pumpkins, for instance last year, when a tiny hole kept his pumpkin from being the first to make the metric ton.  Better luck this year: Beni Meier set a world record in Berlin, beat it in Jona, and beat it again in Ludwigsburg at the European championships, where his baby became the first official pumpkin to weigh over a metric ton.  Click through the pictures: the last two in front of the castle are quite impressive.

Health Care

Just for kicks, I downloaded both the Swiss Krankenversicherungsgesetz (Health Care Insurance Law) and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (a.k.a. ACA).

I stand in awe of US American lawyers.  The Swiss law checks in at 64 pages in fairly large print; the ACA at 906 pages.  A word count of one page each returns roughly the same amount of words per page.  USA vs. Switzerland: 15:1!

Opening pitch

Most creative opening pitch I’ve ever seen.  Never in a thousand years would I have thought of this move, much less of attempting it.  And you know how an attempt would have ended…

Beach Tennis and other instant coolness

On the way to work, I came by a poster hawking beach tennis.  I imagined lots of aces, but wikipedia tells me I imagined wrong, and it’s more like beach volleyball with rackets.  Still, I had to marvel how adding the word “beach” to any staid sport will suddenly, magically make it cool.  In order to increase global coolness (my contribution in the fight against climate change), I hereby present a few sports that could stand an extreme beach makeover.

  • Beach Table Tennis – The player that’s faster retrieving balls gets +1 point, a point contested throughout the set
  • Beach Golf – Sand trap action in swimsuits!  A surefire revenue booster for the LPGA tour.
  • Beach Weightlifting – A sure win.  Spectators like injuries the way they like car wrecks.
  • Beach Skeet – In an event sponsored by Red Bull, the marksman is catapulted through the air and shoots ground targets.
  • Beach Curling – Lots and lots of broomwork!

Any ohers you’d add to the list?