Jump, Jive & Wail

I always knew electric eels were creepy.

Not only are these sea eels creepier than snakes, but they seem even more sinister now that we know they can use their electricity to remotely control the muscles of their prey.

The BBC article above describes how researchers at Vanderbilt University in Nashville discovered that eel current can cause hidden prey to involuntarily ‘jump’, thus revealing their position. You can guess what happens next.

But why were scientists from land-locked Music City so interested in the effect eels can have on the oh-so-correctly-named “unfortunate fish”?

Perhaps it’s really research into the strange power bands have over dancers, especially with the energy of an electric guitar at the front and brass as a conductor.

How are you at operating the remote control?

37 thoughts on “Jump, Jive & Wail”

  1. Good morning. There are buttons on some of the more complicated remote controls that are a mystery to me. Does anyone know what all of those buttons do?

    Years ago, before we had personal computers, cell phones, remotes, and all the other things controlled by buttons, it didn’t take very long to learn how to use controls. There were only a few knobs and switches that were easy to understand and use. Now it seems it is necessary to make controls as complicated as possible with all kinds of options I don’t understand and don’t want.

    Also it seems they make it very easy to push the wrong button which will cause a big problem that is hard to solve. If I need to use a remote I can, sometimes with a lot of effort, learn what I need to do to make it work for me. Then I have to try to avoid making any mistakes or pushing the wrong button because that might result in all kinds of problems that can nearly drive me crazy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You and I are kindred spirits with regard to remote controls, Jim. I feel exactly the same way and worry that I’m becoming one of those “old fogies” who has no comprehension of technology and wishes for the good old days of dials and knobs instead of undecipherable buttons.

      Chris in Owatonna

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      1. Chris, maybe you and I are sort of “old fogies” because we didn’t grow up with complicated button controls and aren’t good at using them. On the other hand, the people who design the complicated button controls should do more to make them user friendly, shouldn’t they?

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  2. I can turn a television off and on and get a movie playing, but that’s not the tough remote control work I need to do. For me, the harder remote control is trying to get a team other than my own to have the same priority and sense of urgency on getting work done that benefits my team (e.g., they have data we want and need to make a new way to consume it so we can slurp it up). Even if it’s related to an “enterprise goal,” it can be tough – that other team has their own priorities to work on, not just mine after all. Sigh.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The Rorschach test gives an indication of the way people solve problems. Generally speaking there are two primary problem solving styles, both of which are equally effective. Some people primarily solve problems by thinking their way to the solution. Others are primarily trial and error problem solvers who rely on their gut feelings. Trial and error people are best characterised by those who push buttons on a remote until they get the result they want. Trial and error people also are more reliant on other people in the environment. The thinkers are more content in their own heads. The most inefficient problem solvers are people who sometimes rely on their feelings and other times rely on their thoughts and have no preferred problem solving mode. I am a button pusher and my husband is a thinker. It also is not effective if you are too much a thinker and get paralysed inside your head, or if you are such a fast and furious button pusher that you don’t learn rom your actions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Although I’m not big on reading instructions, I do try to use my brains. I would like to take controls away from people who just keep pushing buttons randomly and become very frustrated when they don’t magically discover how the buttons work.

      Liked by 1 person

    2. is it possible to be a thinking button pusher?

      I tend to push buttons and then log the results in a sort of IF/THEN chart in my head.

      I have had next to no computer training, but I can usually get it to do what I want, although perhaps not always the way the programmer intended.

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  4. So, Husband would figure out how to run the remote by reading the instructions. I hate reading the instructions and just start pushing the buttons until I get the result I want.

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    1. Maybe it’s a male/female thing. My wife and I are the same, Renee. Drives both of us nuts when the other is in control of the device or whatever. It applies to assembling small pieces of furniture and the like, too. 😦

      Chris in Owatonna

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    1. Have I done something to offend King WP that he decapitates my posts and at times refuses to feed Dale’s posts to me? I think WP has unfairly marked me for persecution and nasty eel shocks.

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  5. I might be good at remotes if I had more practice, but my wife likes to control it. Needless to say our styles are different (see reneeinnd’s post above). When looking for a show to watch, she clicks immediately to the channel guide and scrolls through the listings for the first hundred channels or so before finding something she wants to watch (and by extension, wants me to watch).

    Me? I’m a classic channel surfer. “Let’s see what else is on!”

    I check each channel and give it about five seconds to catch my interest before moving on. Landing on a channel in the middle of a commercial (about an 80% chance these days, it seems), is grounds for immediate dismissal, even if I know that channel is broadcasting the Twins game or Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives.

    If I find a station that gets my attention, I’ll give it another 30 seconds to keep my attention before moving on, So I usually end up watching in bits and pieces, ten or twelve different shows in the course of a half hour. Or until my wife commandeers the remote again.

    Yet we’ve stayed married for 36+ years. Imagine that!. 😉

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Because of arthritis I adore remotes. I have six of them on the table next to my favorite chair. After using them often I can lapse into thinking everything operates with a remote. Once, annoyed at a person talking too much, I tried to silence her by aiming a remote and hitting “MUTE.” I once tried to open a locked door with a remote.

    My former wife is the opposite. Technology intimidates her. There was an infamous incident at a trade show. Kathe was haggling with a book vendor about prices. Frustrated, she seized a calculator and began inputting figures so she could prove her point. But the calculator was not user friendly. “What’s wrong with this damned calculator,” she roared. “I don’t even see the display window!” The stunned book vendor said, “Kathe, that’s the clicker for out TV!”

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Morning from the Atlanta Airport! I’m terrible at the remote. I’ve spent way too much time trying to get the cable remote to work the tv… I’ve tried every code I can find – suppose I’ll have to call at some point. GRRRRRRR. So I guess that means I’m terrible at it.

    My dad was a menace w/ the remote. He insisted on control, but just couldn’t ever settle on anything. And heaven forbid you really wanted to actually watch something, rather than just channel surf!

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  8. Our new TV remote has the volume control and channel selector placed exactly opposite of where the old TV’s buttons were, so I am STILL pushing the channel button half the time when I want to change the volume. Don’t get me started…

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  9. We have for our two TV’s very basic remotes. My wife cannot operate either. I keep wondering why we have tV. There is nothing on. My wife watches two quiz shows and that is about it. Why are we paying all this money for two TV shows
    My daughter just got an upgrade to their TV service as part of better internet service to the church. I am not a techno-fogie. I cannot even turn on their TV anymonre

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  10. I’m a dimwit when it comes to remotes. The remote for my receiver/tuner/CD player seems only to be able to turn on/off and change volume. There are many buttons that could change the station, switch to CD player, etc., one would think. I walk over to it to perform those functions.
    I have no idea why I pay for cable (except that it’s bundled with my phone and internet). I cannot even remember when I last watched TV and have to ask my son every time I want to do so. If it doesn’t work, I have to figure out if I’m doing it wrong or if the remote just needs fresh batteries.

    I think that the younger generation must all be of Renee’s trial and error group, the keep-trying-the-buttons-until-you-get-what-you-need group. They just seem to understand intuitively.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I used to laugh hysterically at my mom because when she wanted to turn the TV off (back when there was no such thing as cable or remote controls), she would randomly turn knobs with no clue has to which knob was on/off. Well, now here I am with a TV with a remote, more than one actually, because I have an old TV that needs one of those converter boxes, so there is a remote for that as well as one each for the TV, and the DVD player. I’ve never had cable TV, so when I’m somewhere there is cable, I am totally lost with the remote that comes with that. I think I could do better with some of the remotes if they were more user-friendly. Why, for instance, are so many of them black and the symbols or words on them also black or a dark color? Combine that with a dim room for watching a movie and I’m as hopeless as my mom used to be. (Ironically, I think she is now better than I am with a remote.)

    I do have a “remote” for my car. It’s great. One button to unlock the car and one to lock it. Easy, peasy.

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  12. I find it somewhat disturbing that in Hamburg, Germany, where my maternal grandmother was born and raised, every family is said to have its favorite recipe for eel stew. I suppose it is the same for most of the coast dwellers on the North Sea and the Baltic. I don’ t know if I could eat eel in any form. My maternal great grandmother was a professional cook, yet her eel stew recipe never was written down or passed on to anyone. Have any baboons eaten eel? The eel in the photo today looks inedible to me.

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    1. In theory, some of my ancestresses came from Hamburg, but the more I learn, the more I think that is just the port they sailed from. Eel has never been part of our foodways (and certainly not eelpouts-ee-ooo!).

      Our food tends toward the Germans in Russia-sour cream, red cabbage and potatoes. yum.

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    2. Eel is wonderful. Really. Smoked eel, fried eel, or eel in curry, some of my all time favorite fish. It is a pretty oily fish, so you don’t eat huge amounts of it, but it’s very, very tasty. Delicious, actually.

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  13. When I read the post topic this morning the remote so I was thinking of were simply to open the garage door and I was thinking all before I met this wife the garage was a place to store everything under the sun and I have never had a car parked in one of the last 20 years I have been parking my car in the garage and the remote is indispensable
    We had my wife’s parents in for Thanksgiving this last week and had to laugh reminded of my dad who loved to sit in the TV room but was frustrated by the fact that the remotes did everything but what he wanted them to do. They would be watching a show and try and turn up the sound or turn the channel or check what was on another channel and completely undo the television connection and end up with a fuzzy screen or the TV not working at all and have to call for help my uncle Paul was a great guy but he sounds like shy trader in that he was impossible to sit in the room and watch television with because no-show lasted longer than 30 seconds before you click to the next one
    The other thought I had with my remote control is not so good neither is my direct control people in my life thing to do what they want regardless of what my thoughts on what they ought to be doing our I guess that’s the way it goes
    Sorry I’m so late getting to the blog these days life is busy but it sure is nice to be able to check in and see how everyone is doing I’ll trying get there a little earlier if I can but life is a bit hectic right now and I’ll do the best I can happy trails Merry Christmas

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It takes three different remotes to accomplish what’s needed to watch the only show I watch faithfully – Jeopardy. One to turn on the amplifier and the converter box, and one to turn on the TV. The third one is needed for increasing or decreasing the volume, and for muting. Fortunately they have different color on/off buttons, so I can tell them apart. The one that turns on the converter box also changes the channel. I’ve got this down, no problemo.

    I also have a remote that locks and unlocks my car. I’m not one for fiddling with buttons and nobs in the car. Hans jokes that I’d leave the radio in a car to the station it was tuned to when I bought it, and there’s some truth to that. Except I can’t remember when I last had a car with a radio that actually worked. But you can bet your bottom dollar that Hans has changed the setting of every damned thing in the car, including where the driver’s seat is located, whenever he has been in it. Fans will be blowing, windshield wipers wiping, and the temperature gauge will be changed; he just can’t leave them alone. Drives me nuts.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. My wife and daughter are both short legged women
      When they drive the seat fits them perfectly. Then they get out and sl innocently set the trap, again and again…
      I put my right foot in… Grab the steering wheel with my right hand… And as I am swinging into position behind the wheel I realize…. There is no room for me at all the seat is so far forward my body can’t tuck without throwing my back out of position and giving myself a chiropractic adjustment that cracks every vertebrae as I grit and bellow is self disgust not believing I did it once again. I regain composure and reach around feeling for the seat adjustment lever and breath a sigh of relief as it slides back into position. The radio is easy to fix. The brain, not so much.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I misplace remotes often, so I usually just use the buttons on the device itself. When I can find the remote for the TV, the “Mute” button can be useful from time to time. Especially just before an election.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hopefully not needed after the election.
      W is in Texas but did you know Jeb is not his name but his initials? Heaven help us and the mute button if he gets in

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