Googlewhacking!

The Guilty Pleasure

I'll admit it, straight off the bat - my mind tends to, well, it tends to wander.  My husband calls it "Carrieworld".  I've always been a thinker, but what am I thinking of?  On the outside, I look like I am contemplating global warming, the state of our economy, or the future of healthcare reform.  However - as embarrassing as it is for me to admit - if you could peel back the skin and cranial muscles and wedge yourself deep into my cranium, you would see what is really going on:-

"I wonder who discovered that if you heat up dried corn kernels, it would become a tasty little snack?  And who decided to further this by slathering on butter?"

"What did I wear yesterday?"

"How many pounds of Jello would it take to fill the complex swimming pool?"

Yes, it's true.  My mind tends to wander.  I have a million and one unanswered questions and to keep my mind off these questions, I have to keep this tiny brain of mine occupied.  So I guess it's a good thing that I am a fan of Dave Gorman (an English comedian).  Mr. Gorman introduced me to (well, he didn't literally, but his book and DVD did) an activity called Googlewhacking.

Googlewhacking, you ask?  Yes!  Dave Gorman was introduced to it by a fan of his who literally sent him an e-mail asking him if he knew he himself was a Googlewhack.  His first reaction?  What the hell is a Googlewhack?  Let me explain.

A Googlewhack is when you enter two words into Google and come up with only one result.  But wait - it's harder than you think!   First off, as with any game, there are rules - 3, to be exact.  Firstly, both words must be underlined in the results page.  This shows that they are, indeed, words and are sanctioned by www.dictionary.com.  Secondly, quotes must not be placed around the words.   This is as good as cheating as it improves your chances of only having one result.  Thirdly, the page found must be a real web page with real everyday content, not a thesaurus listing or word list.  Now you're ready to Googlewhack!

The book "Dave Gorman's Googlewhack Adventure" tells the story of Dave Gorman finding Googlewhacks, then getting those Googlewhacks to find others, to find 10 in a row.  If you have never heard of Dave Gorman, I highly recommend his books and videos.  He has lived more in 30 years than most do in 60.  Also, the man cannot turn down a dare.  But I digress.

So it sounds easy, right?  Ok.  Let's try ANIMALISTIC POTATOES.  34,600 hits.  How about SHAVING AUDIOPHILE.  21,000 hits.  How about FRUITY EXECUTION?  112,000 hits.  Mine aren't as good as Gorman's, as my mind is wandering right now.   He tried Pork Turncoat, Porky Turncoat, and Dork Turncoat before hitting the jackpot with Dork Turnspit.  This was after trying all day, mind you.  I guess that just made success that little bit sweeter.

What does this mean though?  It says to me that there is so much information on the web, depths that we just can't fathom.  I remember when I was a child I loved reading the Encyclopedia Brittanica set that my stepfather bought for Christmas.  These days, it's all about the internet....it's like having a huge Encyclopedia set at your fingertips.  There are things we want to know, need to know.....and probably some things that you stumble upon that you wish you had never seen.  But there it is, all for you to enjoy.  What a world we live in today.  We're riding the information highway, sometimes unnecessarily, but it's a fun ride all the same.

So go on, I dare you.....try to find a Googlewhack.  In fact, I dare you not to.  It's addicting, and we humans are so curious, you won't be able to resist.  Hey, at least we're thinking right?  Exercising our minds, that's good, right?  Plus, it's a game that you don't need money or a board to play.  Just the internet and your imagination.  Go on.  Let me know what you find.  Just make sure you don't lose your life or your job over it - it just may take over. 

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