elements | davidhardiman.com

Posts Tagged ‘elements’

Newly Discovered Elements Enter the Periodic Table

A table with no legs!
How does it stand?
It stands periodically.

As a college student I worked at a snooty little bistro called The Periodic Table – a restaurant renowned for its primordial soup and Big Bang Burgers. To say The Periodic Table caters to academia would be…ummm, the second sentence in this paragraph (sometimes I just don’t know how to finish a thought). But not only does The Periodic Table cater to academia, they also cater to people who…ummm want food supplied to an event they’re having. Again, sometimes I just don’t know how to finish a thought.


The Periodic Table has a superlative staff. Pastry chef Madame Kurie won a MacArthur Genius Award for twice baking half-baked ideas so they’d emerge from the oven as one fully formed idea. I probably could’ve used her help in the first paragraph. After all, she’s a stable genius. I’m just happy to be a wobbly virtuoso.  


Susan Williams, the sous chef, can be very argumentative. She often exclaims, “You don’t like my bouillabaisse? Sue me.” She’s shrewd. She knows no one will sue a sous chef named Sue?


With Covid-19 protocols in effect the social distancing between elements is a minimum of 6 atoms. It’s strictly enforced by nuclear bouncers carrying electron microscopes. The Periodic Table spun-off a restaurant called the Isotope. Managers mathematically determined the Isotope would last for 20 years, but signed a 10-year lease because they were smart enough to realize the unstable Isotope would have a half-life of 10 years.


The Periodic Table is a popular love nest for couples who are carbon dating. Chemistry majors love this semantic den of clever linguistics. For example, chem students can order their milk shakes in three states: solid, liquid or Massachusetts.


Most of the tips I received were of the “Hey, don’t do anything Einstein wouldn’t do,” variety. The fallout from working at the Periodic Table added gritty luster to my otherwise geek-dominated résumé (1st chair high school triangle, Chess Club equipment manager, foster home for orphaned light sabers). Unfortunately the money I earned had a half-life faster than radium and I spent money like an “unstable Cesium-137 atom decaying in a nuclear chain reaction” (I never get tired of that old expression). And even though I spent most of the money on ginkgo biloba, I could never quite remember where it all went.


I hope you enjoyed this overture to my list of newly discovered elements. Elements that all have one thing in common. They radiate humor:

  1. Shelium – Newly discovered sister element to Helium. Oddly enough when you inhale it, it makes your voice deeper. And even though Shelium is lighter than air, it always thinks it’s fat.
  2. Fartium – At first it was thought to be a Noble Gas. But after just one whiff you knew…it ain’t so noble.
  3. Cranium – This element is a head case
  4. Copper – Not that kind of copper. In fact, not really an element at all. It’s what gangsters called a policeman in the 1930s.
  5. Miseryium – Not much is known about this dark matter other than Miseryium loves company
  6. Moronium – An element that only seems to affect other people’s intelligence
  7. Acronymium – BTW, Scientists believe Acronymium stands for something, but FYI, they don’t know what…LOL
  8. Belgium – Not an element. Just a shout out to the country of Belgium.
  9. Tamponium – Tamponium will always have a seat at any Periodic Table – usually once a month.
  10. Yumyumium – What Chinese restaurants sprinkle on food to make it taste better
  11. Conundrum – Scientists are still trying to figure out just where this perplexing element fits in
  12. Viagrium – A lot like zirconium in that it’s not an authentic rock-hard diamond, but no one seems to mind and actually appreciate it nonetheless. Warning: If its half-life last longer than 8 hours – see a mechanic – a quantum mechanic.
  13. Blamium – It’s always somebody else’s element. Eventually decays into an Inferiority Complex.
  14. Blamium-238 – A rare isotope causes complainers to reassess their lives and admit “mea culpa
  15. Sherlockium – Elementary, my dear reader. Also available in the sarcastic isotope, No Sh*t Sherlockium
  16. Steakumms – Found in your refrigerator. At least that’s where I thaw it.
  17. Mormonium – The only element that thinks it’s acceptable to marry with the electrons of more than one atom
  18. Cofault – When cobalt decays and makes a mistake it becomes Cofault
  19. Cobalt – makes you feel blue
  20. Codependentbaltenables cobalt to make you feel blue
  21. Meme-ium – That thing where “We haz no cheezburgers”
  22. Virginium – An element of unblemished purity. High concentrations found in Ivory Soap and Promise Rings
  23. Tounguestun – When a taser accidentally hits your tongue
  24. Palladium – Amphitheater shaped element. The Beatles played there in 1964
  25. Homonymium – Sounds just like an element, but it isn’t. Prefers the orbits of its own kind, as opposed to Heteronymium.
  26. Synonymian – An element that can be substituted for any other element
  27. Cinemanium – What a drunk scientist calls a movie theater
  28. Sinamonium – Too much of this element and you won’t get into Heavenium
  29. Cinnamonium – Above a certain threshold and you develop and overwhelming desire to move to Cincinnati. Also tasty sprinkled on toast.
  30. The most important relationship you’ll ever have is your relationship with yourself. Not an element. Just wanted to send you a little preachy reminder in an Oprah kind of way. I zinc it’s important to remember this.