Friday, February 02, 2007

Friday fun for Feb 2, 2007

It's Groundhog Day. So it only makes sense to refer you to several write-ups about this historic day, beginning with Wikipedia:

Groundhog Day is a traditional festival celebrated in the United States and Canada on February 2. It is a cross-quarter day, midway between the Winter Solstice and the Vernal Equinox.

In traditional weather lore, if a groundhog emerges from its burrow on this day and fails to see its shadow because the weather is cloudy, winter will soon end. If the groundhog sees its shadow because the weather is bright and clear, it will be frightened and run back into its hole, and the winter will continue for six more weeks.

Hmmm...not quite the deep, belly-laugh-inducing quote I was looking for.

If you want more detail, check out "The Official Site of the Punxsutawney Grounhog Club."

Or, better yet, read what Punxsutawney Phil (the groundhog) actually said this morning. (You can find anything on the Internet, can't you?)

For the record, all the various groundhog-sages consulted this morning predict an early spring.

Other diversions

If you've had enough of puzzling over the weather, here's a site that will let you puzzle over other things.

Mighty Optical Illusions is a website that publishes various optical illusions and usually goes on to explain them. It's not particularly deep but it does provide some useful options for procrastinating.

I don't particularly like all the ads that are wrapped around everything, but if you can get past that part -- there's some interesting things in there.

I'm particularly fond of the Stereogram type of illusion, where you have to let your eyes relax and then suddenly you see a 2-D object in 3-D, sometimes with startling results. Here's an example.

If you like these things enough to see them every day, there are a couple of widgets available that you can download to have a new illusion show up on your desktop every day. Here's how to get one for your Google homepage, and here's a link to a Mac widget. (And here's an explanation of widgets, if you need it.)

And finally, have you ever wondered what people that work at home do to celebrate casual Fridays? Well, now you know.

Have a great weekend.

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