The Morning News has a fun article on “tricks of the trade”: documenting little tricks used in various professions. Great stuff.
This year, for instance, a programmer can always tack the phrase “and I’m thinking of incorporating some XML functionality” onto a project summary to explain why he’ll need an extra week, account for a missed deadline, or impress a superior. In this respect, the gap between software engineers and birthday clowns is almost negligible.
Patients will occasionally pretend to be unconscious. A surefire way to find them out is to pick up their hand, hold it above their face, and let go. If they smack themselves, they’re most likely unconscious; if not, they’re faking.