## Archive for September, 2011

### Happy Birthday Jim!

September 24, 2011

As you’ll know if  you’ve been on Google in the past twelve or so hours, today is Jim Henson’s 75th birthday, and in his honor we share with you a rousing rendition of the How Many Game, hosted by the wonderful Guy Smiley!

Follow up question:  should they have won with the sheep?

According to the Muppet Wiki, Guy Smiley’s enthusiasm was rough on Jim Henson’s voicebox, so his portions were rerecorded so that it could be played over and over without Mr. Henson having to keep repeating his dialogue.   The Muppet Wiki also says that there were two two-headed monsters:  the one in the clip above was designed by Jim Henson, but a second, who was on Fanfare and the Mike Douglas Show rather than Sesame Street, was performed by Jim Henson.

### How many before the end?

September 20, 2011

Let’s start with ultimate (yes, that seems a bit backwards – stay with me.), as in “last”.  The next-to-last, then, is penultimate, easily one of my favorite words.  But there’s more!  The next-to-next-to-last is the antepenultimate.  Need another?  The $(\text{next-to})^3$-last is the preantepenultimate, a completely real word that Chrome’s built-in dictionary has never seen (it suggests “prearrangement”).

Why am I telling you all this?  I mean, besides the sheer ridiculousness/awesomeness of a word for the fourth-to-last item in a list?  I needed an excuse to post this video: