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The Scrivener: Birtle Fizz

Brian Barratt Googles up a whole heap of word fun.

To read more of Brianís sparkling columns please click on The Scrivener in the menu on this page.

And do please visit his Web site, The Brain Rummager, which he refers to in this column www.alphalink.com.au/~umbidas/

Funny things, these computer search engines. You know what happens. You type in a couple of key words for your search, and within a fraction of a second receive 17,583 addresses. So you add another word, to narrow down the search, and get a nil response. You picked the wrong word.

If you type a single word, like DOG, you get millions of responses. You need a phrase to narrow it down. The name of my own website, BRAIN RUMMAGER, is one of those rare phrases which brings up links to only one site from the billions of addresses. But you have to type it correctly in this form with all the punctuation: ďBRAIN RUMMAGERĒ. If you donít use the quotation marks, youíll get umpteen rummagers and thousands of brains which are used as separate words.

I thought Iíd try a few searches using ridiculous combinations and nonsense words.

BIDDLY+KNOCKLE gave a nil result, but clever Google asked if I meant BIDDLY+KNUCKLE, and offered me a website with:

...It's the WIDDLY-BIDDLY.". ... the woman and don't we even like our children." Quote (or question) of the day: "Why are our children all such knuckle-dragging idiots ...
and the equally strange:

... Maintaining eye contact, he grasped her hand and lifted it to his lips, placing a small kiss on the knuckle of her index finger ... Biddly-um-bum-bum, biddly-um-bum ...

Aha, I thought, FRUMBLE+DICK. Thatíll flummox it. Wrong! It produced no less than 68 results, starting with:

Mr. Frumble's Fire Engine (The Busy World of Richard Scarry) Richard Scarry(Illustrator ... Babe; The Gallant Pig Dick King-Smith, et al


ďStart your engines, Ladies!" Reviewed by Dick Canarsie, Duncan Frumble Publishing. Age: College Age 19-26...

DIBBLY+DIBBLY+WOW surprised me with 39 results, and Google also asked if I meant DIBLEY+DIBLEY+WOW.

ARCHBISHOPS+MARMALADE+INNOCENCE didnít bring forth as much fruit. Only nine, opening with:

...a date for the Archbishops` Selection Conference ... produce the whole picture from innocence and simplicity ... ways: made and bought marmalade.

Determined not to be outdone, I tried TWIDDLE+KNOCK+SIBERIA. The beast! It found 18 in no time. How about this?

...moved from soldier's province to SiberiaÖHe was ... they have left: why would they twiddle their thumbs ... it knocks at the table- knock, knock, knockÖ

Even TWITTING+STEAM+CRICKET produced two results, but I reckon Google had to hunt pretty deep to find:

... Pollyanna and Jiminy Cricket were usually Marissa's roles ... Chuck wisecracking and complaining, Marissa twitting him about ... sniffed deeply of the steam rising from ...

Surely PLASMIC+STUMPS+HERBERT would bring me a win? No, it came up with:

... with good intentions."...George Herbert CHAPTER 1 "No ... But that same plasmic capsule made transmissions ... Leafless trees and blackened stumps filled hectare ...

Obviously I wasnít aware of plasmic capsules. But I almost won the game with BOOTLE+CRUMBLE+SPRINKLE. All it could find were references in a word-list and a glossary of some sort.

The best of all was BIRTLE+FIZZ. Well, I mean, where on Earth would you find those two words in the same place? Would you believe, I found a doggie site with:

...Gatenby's Accra Caramel Fizz BEARDED COLLIE: Mrs N Birtle. ...

Thatís not fair! If people are going to give their dogs such silly names, Iím not going to play this game any more. But if you want to try it, I recommend Google. Of the 25 search engines I regularly monitor, itís the most comprehensive, though I use Clusty for my daily work.

© Copyright 2003, 2007 Brian Barratt


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