The American Wastebasket Corporation Announces….

The American Wastebasket Corporation is pleased to announce the birth of its National Science Blog. The American Wastebasket Corporation has many things to say about science, some of which may contain a kernel of actual knowledge. Scientific proof of actual knowledge content is available for an additional fee.

So, who are we? The American Wastebasket Corporation invents. We possess patents on most anything you can think of. If you are trying to invent something, don’t bother. We probably already have it in our extensive patent file. Say, for instance, you think you have a new way to derive stem cell lines. Think again. Stem cell line derivation methods are just one of our many products. However, we are willing to license the process to you for a reasonable fee. You can afford it. Write it into your grant.

We make these licenses available to you because we do not want to trip and cause to fall on its face the forward march of science. In fact, the awkward construction of the previous sentence is also patented, so don’t even think of criticizing it, let alone copying it. We are quick to sue. We at the American Wastebasket Corporation believe in the American justice system.

In fact, we also own the patents on most of Natalie Angier’s metaphors and similes. Take the following sentence from this Tuesday’s New York Times: “Yet other lushly plumaged birds, like manakins and honeycreepers, take advantage of the stippled sunshine that breaks through to the forest understories, and will choreograph acrobatic mating displays in which their bright colors alternately blink and darken in the broken light, rather like dancers beneath a spinning disco ball.”

That’s one of ours. Scientists in the American Wastebasket Corporation’s vast laboratories worked many hours to invent the above simile, to say nothing of what it took to keep it alive, to tend its tiny, fluttering heart long enough to get it into print. One particular challenge was, even after the turn of phrase was derived, it was prone to rapid and deleterious mutation. What started out as “spinning disco ball” became “spitting disco doll” in one of our early attempts.

So watch this space for more Scientific Knowledge from the American Wastebasket Corporation. And remember our motto: The Future is Some Time Later.

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