Sep 25, 2015

Happy Friday

Listen hard, speak soft, and laugh with reckless abandon.

This is always my motto, especially for enjoying a Happy Friday!

Johnny Appleseed Day

On Saturday Sep 26 we celebrate the guy who introduced apple trees to large parts of Pennsylvania, Ontario, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and West Virginia. He became an American legend while still alive, due to his kind, generous ways, his leadership in conservation, and the symbolic importance he attributed to apples.

National Drink Beer Day

It is celebrated on Monday, September 28, 2015. Not to be confused with National Beer Day an unofficial holiday in the United States celebrated every year on April 7, celebrating the day in 1933, the first day in 13 years, that people could legally buy, sell, and drink beer.

The best way to celebrate Drink Beer Day is to gather a group of friends for a beer tasting at home or at your favorite pub. Be sure to check for promotions and giveaways that might be going on in your area.

What's in a Name, Starbucks

Seems appropriate when talking about coffee to add this tidbit from Starbucks. “The name, inspired by Moby Dick evoked the romance of the high seas and the seafaring tradition of the early coffee traders. Our mission to inspire and nurture the human spirit.”

During 1971, when Starbucks was first coming to be, it was searching for a way to capture the seafaring history of coffee and Seattle’s strong seaport roots. The owners read old marine books. They found a 16th century Norse woodcut of a twin-tailed mermaid, or Siren. There was something about her – a seductive mystery mixed with a nautical theme that was exactly what the founders were looking for. The logo was designed around her, and their long relationship with the Siren began. Lofty goals, a mermaid, and coffee are all good ways to start a Friday.


Stumptown is one of several nicknames for Portland, Oregon. In the mid-19th century, the city's growth led residents to clear much land of trees quickly, but the tree stumps were not immediately removed. In some areas, there were so many stumps that people would jump from stump to stump in order to avoid the muddy, unpaved roads.

The nickname is used in the names of several local businesses, including Stumptown Coffee Roasters, an independent coffee roaster and retailer located in Portland; StumpTown Kilts, a maker of men's and women's modern kilts; Stumptown (comics), a creator-owned detective fiction comic book series set in Portland.

Portland-based Stumptown Coffee offers its cold-brew coffee on nitro at Stumptown Cafes and wholesale to businesses that it distributes to. It looks like a beer, has the creamy mouth feel of a stout, and is available at the bar.
Austin, Texas-based Cuvee Coffee Roastery’s Black and Blue has a cold-brewed coffee that mimics the frothiness of a Guinness the same way they do it in Dublin: with nitrogen. It is the first to make the coffee available in widget cans. When opened, these cans agitate their contents and produce a creamy texture in much the same way a can of Guinness does.

In Vitro vs. In Vivo

We hear these terms in the medical context, but they can be confusing. In vivo, (within the living) means within the body and in vitro, (within the glass) means outside of the body, such a test tube.

Krispy Kreme Dog

A hot dog is being offered to fans at Wilmington Blue Rocks minor league baseball games this season. The “Krispy Kreme Donut Dog” is placed between a glazed Krispy Kreme donut, packed with bacon and topped with raspberry jelly.

Contact Juggling

Contact juggling is a form of object manipulation that focuses on the movement of objects in contact with the body. It involves the rolling of one or more objects without releasing them into the air. It is divided into three main techniques: Body rolling means manipulating one or more props around the hands, arms, and other parts of the body.

Palm spinning means manipulating one or more balls in the open hand so that at least one ball is in motion. Balls may be in both hands or transferred between hands to form graceful and fluid patterns, including rotating a pyramid made of four or five balls in one hand.

Isolation refers to the manipulation of a ball so that it appears to be suspended in place, creating the effect that the ball is still while the performer moves around the ball.

I placed this three minute video link of a master juggler at the end, so you did not get distracted from the rest of the interesting tidbits above. LINK

Cutting Phone Lines

Seems like old wired telephones may be going the way of the Edison light bulbs, in favor of newer technology. AT&T and others are trying to cut the cord on the old analog telephone system that has been used for generations, with a coordinated campaign to change telecommunications law, state by state.

In Illinois, the industry wants to rescind a state requirement that it maintain those copper-wire networks. In terms of just residential phone lines that use traditional telephone technology, just 1.3 million are left in Illinois today. At the same time, the number of wireless subscribers in Illinois has climbed from about 5.6 million in 2001 to about 12.8 million by the end of 2013.

Some major carriers, including AT&T, are designated in the current law as “carriers of last resort,” meaning they are obligated by law to maintain those copper analog landlines within their service areas. The companies say it is a matter of giving consumers what they want, cell phones, broadband, and other 21st-century digital options instead of keeping their capital tied up in the telecom equivalent of a horse-and-buggy system.

In 2011, Missouri eliminated its previous “carrier of last resort” obligation on carriers in St. Louis County, St. Louis, and Kansas City. In 2014, Michigan joined more than 30 other states that have passed or are considering laws that restrict state-government oversight and eliminate "carrier of last resort" mandates, effectively ending the universal-service guarantee that gives every US resident access to physical wire-line telephone service.

Sep 18, 2015

Check My Book

Please stop by Amazon and check my latest book, Bacon Orgazmia. It will make you Happy. "Peek Inside" coming soon.

Happy Friday

"Success in anything is through happiness." ~ Maharishi Yogi

I am always happy to succeed in having a Happy Friday!

International Talk Like a Pirate Day

Saturday September 19 is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. There is a Facebook page, Twitter account, and much more on the web. Look for the Facebook option to change your words to pirate talk. Here are a few pirate words to get you started.

Duffel is a sailor's personal belongings and the bag that carries them. It is named after the Flemish town of Duffel that produced the woolen cloth which the bags were made of.

Avast comes from the Dutch phrase 'houd vast' which meant 'hold fast' or 'stop'. Over time it became 'hou vast' and later 'avast'

Poop deck originates from the French word for stern, la poupe. The poop deck is technically a stern deck, which in sailing ships was usually elevated as the roof of the stern cabin, also known as the 'poop cabin'. In sailing ships, an elevated position was ideal for both navigation and observation of the crew and sails.

Opt Out

Many companies drop cookies on our computers and store information about sites we go to, things we 'like' on Facebook, and more. This site link below will check your computer and let you know which companies are looking at your info. It provides an option to opt out. The process just takes a few minutes. If you are like me and hate all the tracking and bombarding me with ads, this is worth the time. LINK

Genetics vs. Genomics

The words genetic and genomic are often used interchangeably. However, they have different and specific meanings.

Genetics is the study of heredity. It is the study of how inherited traits are passed from one generation to the next through the genes, and how new traits appear by way of genetic mutations or changes. These traits may be characteristics like eye or hair color.

Genomics is a more recent term that describes the study of all of a person's genes (the genome). Genomics is defined as the study of genes and their functions, and related techniques.

The main difference between genomics and genetics is that genetics looks at the functioning and composition of a single gene and genomics addresses all genes and their inter relationships in order to identify their combined influence on the growth and development of an organism.

Genetic information is stored in the molecule DNA
Gene refers to a specific sequence of DNA on a single chromosome that encodes a particular product. Humans have many thousands of genes, spaced across the entire set of DNA.

The word genome encompasses the entire set of genetic information across all 23 chromosome pairs, including all genes, as well as gene-modifying sequences, and everything in-between.

In the context of clinical and research settings, "genetic" testing refers to the examination of specific bits of DNA that have a known function.

Genomic testing looks for variations within large segments across the entirety of genetic material, both within and outside known functional genes. It looks at groups of genes and how active they are, such as how a cancer is likely to grow and respond to treatment.

All the genes make up the genome. Both are important because understanding more about diseases caused by a single gene using genetics and complex diseases caused by multiple genes and environmental factors using genomics can lead to earlier diagnoses, interventions, and targeted treatments. 

Flag Trivia

Two countries have flags that do not contain the colors red, white, or blue. They are Jamaica and Mauritania (11th largest country in Africa).

Android vs. Apple Phones

Android continues to dominate the smartphone market, in spite of Apple advertising domination.

Autumnal Equinox

The Autumnal or Fall Equinox is a floating date around September 22-23 that marks the first day of autumn, when day and night are of equal lengths. The sun crosses the equator moving southward (in the northern hemisphere). The Autumnal Equinox marks the beginning of shorter days and longer nights and the passage into winter. On this day, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west; the sun will begin to rise at the South Pole after six months of darkness, to bring six months of daylight; and the zenith passes directly overhead on the equator, so the sun casts no shadows. For centuries, friends have gathered to celebrate the day and strengthen their spirits in preparation for the passage into winter.


We do not even have much content for 4K TVs and now Sharp has announced an 8K, 85 inch LV-85001 for just US $133,000. In fact broadcast testing of 8K is not scheduled to begin until 2016.

8K is 7680 x 4320, which is 104 pixels per inch at the 85-inch size; the contrast ratio is 100,000:1 with viewing angles of 176 degrees. It will be available October 31, 2015.

When I first got into the technology business, hardware was always lagging behind need. Seems during the past ten years technology is leading, and searching for content and relevance before its typically ultra-short life cycle ends. Thank goodness for early adopters, who take the arrows and pay the big bucks so we can enjoy later.

Free Happy Dance Friday

Sep 11, 2015

Bacon Orgazmia

The stars have aligned and my latest (50th) book Bacon Orgazmia is now available on Amazon. More information about bacon than has been allowed to be known about any subject since the beginning of the known universe. Please take a look. Peek Inside will be added soon for a free preview.

Suffix Ough

English is such a fun language. There are seven ways to pronounce the suffix 'ough'

  • dough              doe
  • tough               tuff
  • hiccough         hiccup
  • bough              bow
  • ought               awt
  • cough              coff
  • through           thru

Five Peanut Butter Facts

Grand Saline, Texas, holds the record for the largest peanut butter and jelly sandwich, which weighed in at 1,342 pounds.

More than half of the American peanut crop is used to make peanut butter and the US is the world’s third-highest peanut-producing nation, after China and India.

It takes about 540 peanuts to make a 12-ounce jar of peanut butter.

Peanut butter sales were confined to regional markets until the development of hydrogenation in the 1920s. Hydrogenation stops the separation of peanut oil and solids by raising the melting point so that peanut butter is a solid at room temperature.

Arachibutyrophobia is the fear of getting peanut butter stuck to the top of your mouth.

Children's Logic

A virgin forest is a forest where the hand of man has never set foot.

The spinal column is a long bunch of bones. The head sits on the top and you sit on the bottom.

The word trousers is an uncommon noun because it is singular at the top and plural at the bottom.

Heteronym, Homograph, Homonym, and Homophone

A homograph is a word that has the same spelling as another word, but has a different meaning, such as lead (to go in front of) and lead (a metal). The ending –graph means drawn or written, so a homograph has the same spelling.

Heteronyms are a type of homograph that are also spelled the same and have different meanings, but sound different, such as above or bow (tied with ribbon)
bow (of a boat).

A homophone is a word that has the same sound as another word, but is spelled differently and has a different meaning, such as to, two, and too. The ending –phone means sound or voice, so a homophone has the same pronunciation.

A homonym means either a word that is spelled like another, but has a different sound and meaning (homograph) or a word that sounds like another, but has a different spelling and meaning (homophone).
A word that is spelled and pronounced like another, but has a different meaning (homograph and homophone), like by (near) and buy (to purchase).

Strictly speaking both homographs and homophones are homonyms, but homonyms can be either or both a homograph and homophone. Heteronyms are always homographs, but homographs are not always heteronyms.

Poisonous vs. Venomous

If you bite it and you die, it is poisonous.
If it bites you and you die, it is venomous.

Cling Wrap Hack

Did you ever come across a bowl which plastic wrap never seems to cling to? Here is an easy fix, put your finger in water and run it across the outside surface and rim of the bowl. Plastic wrap has a substance much like gelatin that becomes sticky on contact with water and this quick trick takes advantage of that reaction.

Wordology, Justiciable, Moot, and Unripe

Justiciability is one of several criteria that the United States Supreme Court use to make a judgment. In order for an issue to be justiciable (liable to be tried in court) by a United States federal court, all of the following conditions must be met.
The parties must not be seeking an advisory opinion.

There must be an actual controversy between the parties, meaning that the parties cannot agree to a lawsuit where all parties seek the same particular judgment from the court (known as a friendly suit); the parties must each be seeking a different outcome.

The question must be neither unripe nor moot.
   An unripe question is one for which there is not yet at least a threatened injury to the plaintiff, or where all available judicial alternatives have not been exhausted.
   A moot question is one for which the potential for an injury to occur has ceased to exist, or where the injury has been removed.

Twinkies Facts

They were invented in 1932 by James Alexander Dewar. The first Twinkie held banana cream, though banana rationing during World War II forced the switch to vanilla cream, now the official Twinkie flavor.

Top Ten Books

From the New York Times 2015

41George W. Bush 
10% Happier Dan Harris 
13 Hours Mitchell Zuckoff 
America Dinesh D'Souza 
Blood Feud Edward Klein 
Capital in the Twenty-First Century Thomas Piketty 
David and Goliath Malcolm Gladwell 
Duty Robert M. Gates 
Flash Boys Michael Lewis 
Hard Choices Hillary Rodham Clinton 
Humans of New York Brandon Stanton 
Killing Patton Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard 
One Nation Ben Carson with Candy Carson 
The Future of the Mind Michio Kaku
Things That Matter Charles Krauthammer 
Thrive Arianna Huffington 
Uganda Be Kidding Me Chelsea Handler 
Unbroken Laura Hillenb
What If Randall Munroe 
Yes Please Amy Poehler 

Sep 4, 2015

Happy Friday

Life is like a book, it needs a good opener, compelling middle, and appropriate ending.

I always have a compelling day when celebrating a Happy Friday!

Happy International Bacon Day

International Bacon Day or Bacon Day is an unofficial observance held on the Saturday (Tomorrow, Sep 5, 2015) before Labor Day in the United States. Last year Bacon Day was celebrated in the US, Australia, Canada, South Africa, Switzerland, and the UK.

Some groups also celebrate National Bacon Day on December 30. Bacon day celebrations typically include social gatherings during which participants create and consume dishes containing large quantities of bacon, including bacon-themed breakfasts, lunches, dinners, desserts, and drinks. Yes, I unapologetically celebrate both, because bacon deserves more than one holiday per year.

Happy Labor Day

 Labor Day Labor Day is a US federal holiday and all government offices, schools and organizations and many businesses are closed. Labour Day in Canada is celebrated on the same day. It is traditionally the first Monday of September and was originally organized to celebrate various labor associations' strengths of and contributions to the United States economy. Usually, it is a day of rest in modern times. Many people mark Labor Day as the end of the summer season and a last chance to make trips or hold outdoor events. Why not have a Labor Day and Bacon Day party to celebrate both at the same time. I'll bring the bacon.

Wordology, Used and Used

These two words are a type of heteronym and homograph. They are spelled alike, but are pronounced different and have different meanings.

The first word is an adjective that means previously used or owned, such as a used car. It also means showing wear, as used clothes and utilized for a reason, as an often used tool.

The second definition means accustomed to, and is pronounced yoost, as in, I am not used to being accused.

Pablo Picasso's Real Name

Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso (This name uses Spanish naming customs: the first or paternal family name after Trinidad is Ruiz and the second or maternal family name is Picasso.)

What's in a Name, Haskell Library

It is a building straddling Vermont, US and Canada border. Step through the front door of the Haskell Library and you are in the United States. Walk across the carpeted floor to the circulation desk and you are in Canada, but if you sit on the couch, you are back in the United States.

The 106-year-old Romanesque building, which straddles the border, has enjoyed an informal immunity from border restrictions through the years.

Medical Errors

The thing we see cited among the top causes of death is medical errors, also known in the literature as “preventable adverse events.” That means when medical personnel do the wrong thing, or fail to do the right thing, or do the right thing, but do it wrong. This can often take the form of misdiagnosis, or miscommunication between various healthcare providers, or between providers and patient. Medical errors are the third leading cause of death in America.

John Tyler, President

The tenth US president, John Tyler (1841-1845) was the first US born president. He was born in March 29, 1790, in the State of Virginia, US. The treaty of Paris establishing USA as a new country was signed in September 3, 1783. Although the previous presidents were born in what is now the US, it was a British colony until that date.

V8 Juice Ingredients

The eight juices in V8 are tomato, spinach, celery, carrot, beet, lettuce, watercress, and parsley.