Tag Archives: inventions


pt. II of “Victor Frankenstein in the Underworld”

Despite my prior bout of disbelief,
My strong desire to hear what Vic would say
And meet the heir of legend’s noblest thief
(Prometheus) inspired me to stay.
His face displayed a world of grief
That passing eras never would allay.
He started speaking at a frantic pace
And never looked directly at my face:

“What we’ve discovered is the slightest bur
That’s found inside the smallest garden plot.
I sought to gather elements and stir
Ingredients in Mother Nature’s pot.
I mixed these parts to see what might occur
And used ‘what is’ to bring about ‘what’s not’.
The epitaph I wanted on my slab
Was: ‘Victor made the planet Earth his lab’.

The words of Victor prompted me to think:
“The monster’s often saner than the master
Whose works might bring us to destruction’s brink.
The age of technological disaster,
In which a world might die inside a blink,
Is plagued by folk of Victor’s mold and plaster.
If born today, when atoms roughly smash,
His monster might’ve burned our world to ash.”

Although I saw he truly was contrite,
I thought, “His type is apt to mope and mourn
Once it’s extinguished life and vital light
(which is more easily destroyed than born).”
…But human pity for his woeful plight
Began to soften and replace my scorn.
Recalling what a gentle sage had taught,
I kept inside the harmful words I’d thought.



World-Transforming Innovation

“A Devious Dealer”
A dealer’s devised a device
For transforming his foes into lice
That he puts in the hair
Of the buyers who dare
To insist that he lower his price.

“Jack and Jill”
A doctor invented a pill
That can turn any Jack to a Jill
But turns not a Pam
Into Harry or Sam
For reasons unclear to me still.

“[They Call Me] Dr. Bug”
A chemist invented some drugs
For transforming his foes into bugs.
Some exist now as bees,
While others, as fleas,
Are residing on dogs and in rugs.

3 limericks by Paul Burgess

“Jack and Jill” appeared in my earlier post: https://paulwhitberg.wordpress.com/2014/06/02/to-change-your-life-forever/

And “Dr. Bug” appeared in my earlier post: https://paulwhitberg.wordpress.com/2014/06/07/dr-bug-and-the-skunk-man-read-steinbeck-while-stopping-at-a-mole-hole-on-the-way-to-church/

Devil’s Derivations (or Etymologies from Hell) By Dr. Burgess [#3]

Although the television was invented in the 20th century, the word “television”—originally the phrase “tell ye vision”—was coined centuries earlier by Henry VIII’s friend Tomas Morris. A passage in Morris’s pastoral allegory Mootopia mentions a device that would save people the effort of thinking through views or arriving at their own opinions. The device would tell one how to view all aspects of life; as one character in Mootopia says to another,
         With it to tell ye vision, you’ll need no eyes.
         It’ll tell ye, “Here you’ll love and there despise.”

Inventors in the 20th century were inspired by the idea of a product that they thought might increase economic productivity by reducing the amount of effort that people would need to put into thought. When trying to find a name more appealing than “idiot box,” inventors remembered Tomas Morris’s famous “Tell ye vision” couplet and decided that “television” had a nice ring.