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09/28/93 - Eggs and Hamsters - Who eats, and who gets eaten

Letter to the Editor: Ask not for whom the bell tolls...

02/08/94 - Strawberries and Whipped Cream - Why I get wet at WPI

02/15/94 - Pencils and Jello - What's Holding This Up?

02/22/94 - Oprah and Applesauce - And now a word from our fans

03/01/94 - Moats and Chicks - What's being served today?

03/29/94 - Lists and destiny - A smile without a cat

04/19/94 - Carbonless Paper and the Swiss Alps - The healthier alternative

04/26/94 - Toasted armadillos and the jon - How to balance the budget


08/30/94 - Coke Bottle Glasses and Chicken Little - Who's running the show?

09/07/94 - Blowup Dolls and Sharp Tacks - Closed for Remodeling

09/13/94 - Anchovies in the Petrolium Jelly - How did I get into this?

09/20/94 - Fog and the Dutch - Why am I muddy?

10/04/94 - Doughnuts and The Swamp Thing - What do you want on your Tombstone?

10/11/94 - Phone Calls and Blank Walls - Has Jack Frost been nipping at your... butt?

11/01/94 - Sabotage and Sodas - The Time has Come

11/08/94 - Ticket Stubs and Drinking - What's all the rush about?

11/15/94 - Flea Bites and Lounge Acts, Don't Touch That Dial

11/22/94 - Seagulls and Parking Lots - Do you really have to take this?

12/06/94 - Marching bands and pink balloons - You're getting verrrry sleepy...

12/13/94 - Merry Christmas or Seasons Greetings - Grab a PC and take off.

01/17/95 - Cartoons and Twinkies - Who's stuffing the ballot box?

01/24/95 - Feathers and Harbor Seals - What's that thing growing on your leg?!

01/31/95 - Four-wheelers and Telephone Poles - Who's been eating YOUR porridge?

02/07/95 - Fig Leaves and Pipe Cleaners - What are you doing in here?

02/21/95 - Cappuccino and Microchips - The Good Time Eating Place

02/28/95 - Dental Floss & Diaphragms - Trouble Brewing?

03/21/95 - Tangerines and Coffee Beans - Sleepless in New Jersey

03/28/95 - Top Hats and Hopscotch - Your one-stop bait and tackle store

04/04/95 - L. I. L. A. B. O. C. A. W. J. S. O. T. N. Y. F. I. T. W. B. T. Y. A. P. I. T. B. N. O. T. F. B. R. T. W. L. T. C. P. F. T. O. Y. W. F. T. S. Y. C. F. O. N. T. I. T. I. O. B. Y. F. T. O. Y. W. D. K. H. O. T. H. T. O. Y. V. C. R. W. I. H. U. A. A. S. . L. T. J. W. T. U. A. W. B. G. T. S. B. A. M. T. F. 1. I. O. M. S. A. O. T. L. T. W. A. W. T. D. T. H. O. W. R. W. L. Y. P. W. W. W. C. T. Y. A. O. T. D. A. A. V. E. R. O. Y. C. B. W. K. T. W. C. N. A. A. P. O. Y. H. Q. T. U. L. I. T. T. Y. G. S. O. Y. N. H. I. W. O. M. P. L. G. I. A. S. G. P. T. Y. N. T. Y. N. N. N. I. I. T. Y. U. L. G. B. T. T. A. T. R. A. L. B. O. A. W. H. A. A. N. W. W. H. A. R. A. A. R. C. A. C. N. W. C. A. P. P. C. A. N. P. P. C. M. A. W. E. I. L. N. R. C. C. H. H. A. W. W. A. T. T. S. I. T. W. R. R. R. W. Y. T. D. A. T. W. L. F. F. U. P. T. E. P. U. T. T. W. T. W. R. T. Y. N. R. P. T. W. Y. B. A. D. A. W. P. I. F. Y. B. F. M. S. D. E. O. Y. L. T. A. P. L. A. G. C. A. W. P. T. D. F. Y. F. C. O. S. D. D. F. C. S. A. F. N. J. D. S. K. T. E. A. S. W. O. S. S. D. A. E. W. T. P. C. W. U. W. G. A. F. T. O. R. A. B. Y. F. A. S. D. C. O. O. H. W. W. R. Y. T. Y. P. S. P. N. W. T. Y. - A new record

04/11/95 - Spandex and Harsh Abrasives - We don't do Windows

04/18/95 - Paper Bags and Sharp Sticks - What flavor would you like?

04/25/95 - Sponge Cake and Mrs. Butterworth - Some settling may occur during shipping


08/19/95 - Aardvarks and Toothpicks - Here's looking at you, kid.

08/29/95 - Pop Rocks and Oral Sex - Please watch your step

09/06/95 - Laserdisks and Fallen Angels - Who finished off the milk?!

09/12/95 - Cheez-Its and Deep Sea Fishing - Parrish the Thought

09/26/95 - Napkin Roses and Freckles - Nice guys read Dr. Seuss

10/03/95 - Laser Sights and Goats - Sorry, Worcester Joke...

10/10/95 - Cockroaches and Sack Fights - I'm sorry, my dentures must have slipped

10/31/95 - Paper Clips and Vegetarians - Do Whatever the Little Voices Tell You To Do

11/07/95 - Peanut Butter and Mel Tormei - Hey, Who Used All the Hot Water?!

11/14/95 - Hot Fudge and Cold Guns - Excuse me, there's a fly in my soup.

11/21/95 - Dairy Cows and a 6-Foot Threaded Rod - Kiss Me I'm Irish

12/05/95 - VCRs and Cannolies - Just point, click, and ship.

12/12/95 - Thick Socks and Bubble Baths - Sorry, Virginia...

01/16/96 - Shoehorns and a Pleasant Wedge - 'Nuff snow fer ya?

01/23/96 - Harsh Words and Sun Spots - The Gompei Chronicles

02/13/96 - Silly String and Lois Lane - Sounds Like a Title to Me

04/23/96 - Pickles and Pizza - No, no, no. He's just... pining...


04/22/97 - Natural Oils and Stolen Ideas - There's a Buddha on my Monitor


01/30/01 - Strained Peas and Intellectual Property - We Didn't Expect the Spanish Inquisition!

02/06/01 - Squirrels and Party Favors - Hey, babe, what's your sign?

02/13/01 - Charlie Sheen and Bean Paste - Anybody know what happened to the cat?

02/20/01 - Peaches and Spiny Chameleons - Did I leave the branding iron on?


Toasts and Shaving Cream - If you're the best man, why are you going stag?

09/04/01 - Boxers and Radishes - I want a standing ovation!

11/13/01 - Sardines and Diamondbacks - We agree to pause and rant

Ask not for whom the bell tolls...

To The Editor:

I enjoyed your amusing article in the Sept. 28 edition of Newspeak about the clock in the Two Towers Logo. Moreover, I applaud your keen powers of observation, tenacious research activity and indomitable "need to know."

In fact you have inspired me to come forward with the true, shocking, and unseemly story behind the clock with the changing face. You see, I'm the source you seek. I was there when it all happened. I'm the man who's responsible for the Two Towers Logos you've been examining.

It should be noted here as well that you are not alone in your quest for answers to the darkest secrets of The Logo. Many have wondered aloud about the other curiosity of this image-the backwards E in the Washburn weathervane. Some have suggested it should be corrected. Nevermind that, with a weathervane, the E will always be backwards from someone's point of view. Why not ours? But incongruity will drive some engineers to distraction. (I know- most of my best friends are engineers.) A few have gone so far as to alter The Logo for their personal use-reversing the E with illustration programs on their home and office computers. But back to the clock issue at hand.

I can tell you that the time of 4:00 has poignant historical significance for the life of the Institute, and that the precise meaning is a closely guarded secret of the Skull Honorary Society, but I would be lying. But I really should say that the 3:09 version, precisely 51 minutes prior to the silhouette version's time, imparts a value, T, which will solve the most intractable equations. But that would be a fiction as well.

It was Winter, 1988. We still toiled under the Reagan regime and Mike Dukakis was toying with my liberal heart. I was hunkered over my drawing table, working on a final rendition of the logo, and I came to the circle that would be the clock, it's damning vacantness stared back at me like the abyss, and I had to ask myself, "What time is it anyway?"

It was 2:15, but that's not important now.

I took a step back, and considered the larger picture and the outline of the Towers. Then I approached the problem the way a painter approaches a clean white canvas-with the third eye open, the right brain shouting "Geronimo!" and the left brain securely locked in a closet. Two strokes of the pen later, it was four o'clock. Because, to my eye, the 120-degree angle the two hands form best complements the shape surrounding the clock's face.

This is also the short answer behind the 3:09 version of the Two Towers logo. I imagine the fellow artist I commissioned to render the outline drawing would tell you a very similar story. 3:09 was simply the way he saw it. While I noted the time had changed, I found his work to be (to borrow an engineering term) within tolerance.

Call it aesthetics. Call it artistic license. Call it BS. Or call it the revenge of a couple of Fine Arts majors on a community of proud engineers. I'm sorry, there just isn't a way to prove which time is "correct." This revelation will probably annoy a few of you, disappoint some others who may have been looking for Traditions Day fodder, and make not a whit of difference to the vast majority. But hey, you asked. And (of course) I have a moral to this story.

In my business, the visual arts, there is no right or wrong, just degrees of success. Further, the definition of success is highly subjective and always changing. In this regard I think artists and engineers are polar opposites: left brain/right brain, speculative/empirical, ethereal/concrete. Yet I find engineers to have as much creative spirit as any artist. Go figure. Further I find this works in reverse. Scratch an artist and you'll find a technician, a theorist and a perfectionist (albeit with his own set of rules). So fear not the hordes of liberal arts majors destined for the doors of WPI. We have more in common than you think.

Mike Sherman

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