Friday, December 17, 2010

80 and Still Jealous

An 80-year-old man launched a hammer attack on his wife's 63-year-old lover after catching the couple kissing, a court heard.
Stuart Pask, a retired production engineer, battered John Hanson over the head repeatedly in front of horrified commuters at Waterloo Station.

Mr Hanson crouched under a 'rain of blows' as Pask's wife Teresa, 61, looked on.

After being restrained by two off-duty policemen Pask said: 'He's been f***ing my wife.'

Turning to Mrs Hanson, a software project manager, the husband said: 'You kissed him four times.

'He asked for it and he got it. I've spent the last year doing up our house. They've probably been in my bed and in the whirlpool which I fitted.'
However, Mrs Pask was horrified when her husband was jailed. She said: 'This isn't justice - this is a total waste of everybody's money.'

Blackfriars Crown Court heard Mrs Pask and Mr Hanson had an affair but they claimed they ended it off when her husband found out.
The married couple stayed together, living at their home in Surrey, and had recently enjoyed a holiday in America when their lives unravelled for a second time.
Philip Jones, prosecuting, said the former lovers met through a mutual interest in genealogy.
He said:'Mr Pask is a gentleman aged 80 and his wife Teresa who is some 19 years his junior, have been married for 33 years

'Mr Pask is a man of previous good character. Quite a few years ago he and his wife both developed an interest in genealogy.
'It was through that mutual interest that they came to know the complainant in this case, Mr Hanson.

'It came about towards the beginning of last year that Mrs Pask and Mr Hanson began an affair and it lasted for some months.

'It concluded in October 2009 after it was discovered by Mr Pask. Mr Pask was very angry about it but he was assured it was to end.'
The Pasks stayed together, living at their home in Surrey, and had recently had a 'very successful' holiday in America.
However, their lives unravelled for a second time, as Mr Jones continued: 'On 7th August this year they encountered Mr Hanson at a reception and it somehow started up in the defendant's mind his feelings about this affair and that Mr Hanson had got away with having an affair with his wife.

'Then on 10th August Mrs Pask, having maintained her interest in genealogy, was to attend a committee meeting at the premises of the Society of Genealogists in Clerkenwell.

'She assured her husband that she would not spend any time alone with Mr Hanson.
'Mr Pask knew the time she would be getting her train home from Waterloo Station.

'He had reservations but she assured him she would not see him alone.

'It was a meeting that went on until the early evening, but after the meeting had finished she did spend some time with Mr Hanson.'
The court head Mrs Pask shared a bottle of wine with Mr Hanson at the Royal Festival Hall before walking back to Waterloo, where they kissed goodbye on the concourse.

'The time arrived at which Mrs Pask had to catch her train back, having spent a pleasant time together.

Mr Jones continued: 'Mr Hanson made his way towards Marks and Spencer for some water and suddenly he saw coming towards him somebody he recognised to be the defendant.

'He saw the defendant had something in his right hand. It was in fact a hammer, concealed with a white plastic carrier bag.

'The defendant ran up to Mr Hanson and took hold of his shoulder. With the hammer in his right hand he struck Mr Hanson a number of times on the head and two blows landed on his arm and shoulder.

'Mr Hanson crouched and raised his arms and tried to protect himself. The blows rained upon him.

'He did not recall being kicked though other witnesses spoke of this happening.'

Pask, of Byfleet Road, New Haw, Addlestone, Surrey, admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

His wife was stunned and in tears as he was led away. She said as the judge left the room: 'I'm sorry, I'm a bit confused. Has he just sentenced my husband to two years imprisonment?
'He's just sent an 80-year-old to prison for two years?.' Outside court she said: 'You see in the papers people getting away with much more serious things. I'm overwhelmed with disbelief.
'He didn't think of the consequences - he had that flash of anger.'

Mrs Pask said she was worried about her husband's safety in prison, and did not even know where he was being taken.

She added: 'He's never even been in a court in his life. The people that should have been in court today is John and me, not Stuart.
'This isn't justice - this is a total waste of everybody's money.'

Tim Brown, defending, said she felt partly responsible for the attack even though her husband 'makes it clear he takes responsibility for his behaviour'.

Mr Brown pleaded for any jail sentence to be suspended, his lawyer added: 'He and his wife are together.
'There is no contact with Mr Hanson. There are no social matters. Had they taken this view six months ago they know Mr Pask wouldn't have been here today.

'They take the view that if they are to make anything of their marriage this has to be the case. They are having counselling. It is clear there's a lot of work to be done.
'There is a lot of resentment from Mr Pask and a lot of guilt on the part of Mrs Pask.' Jailing Pask, Judge David Martineau said he had taken into account that a 'red mist' descended.
He accepted his behaviour was completely out of character - provoked by a feeling of having been 'greatly wronged'.

But he added: 'This was a thoroughly pre-meditated attack with a hammer, aimed at the head, motivated by revenge which could very easily have resulted in serious harm.

'It is very surprising that it didn't so result. It was committed in full view of a great many people at Waterloo Station.

'If you had any previous convictions and if you were 10 or more years younger it seems to me it would inevitably have been a substantial custodial sentence.'

Sunday, November 21, 2010

6 Ways Plants Are Used as Weapons

Sure they may look harmless, but in the hands of the right people, a plant can be just as deadly as a shotgun. Plants have been an integral part in weapons manufacturing and advancements for thousands of years.

1. Arrows and Darts

First of all, it is worth noting that these weapons all originate from plants:
• Bows
• Arrows
• Spears
• Darts

All of the above are all derived from the ash, elm and other species of tree. However, assuming that bats, clubs and other wooden objects are too easy, let’s examine how these plant-weapons are enhanced using other plants.

Arrows found dating back to thousands of years ago were found to have grooves cut in the tips with trace elements of such poisons as tubocurarine and curare. These poisons derived from plants act as a paralytic, adding asphyxiation to the arrow or dart wound. Though it sounds dangerous to be used in hunting, cooking the meat renders the poison ineffective, and therefore there are no chances of second hand exposure.

2. Poisons

Not only do we have the Egyptians to thank for paper, sandals and Brendan Fraser’s career, but we also can thank them for much of the knowledge of poisons we have today.

It is widely believed that the Egyptians were responsible for discovering the poisonous properties of arsenic, henbane and strychnine long before modern medicine existed. Their experimentation with distillation, fermentation, and eating things that might have been poison single-handedly gave us most of the information we have today about naturally occurring poisons.Whether they were using the seeds, leaves or roots of plants, the Egyptians discovered many a way to weaponize flowers.

3. Barbed Wire

Although stronger, more flexible versions have been created and implemented since, the first roll of barbed wire was actually a plant.

The Scottish Thistle is a thorny little cactus flower that possesses hundreds of sharp edges and barbs. This plant is responsible for saving Scotland from a sneak attack by Norsemen during the 13th century. Because the Norse were barefoot, their cries of pain from stepping on the thistle alerted the Scottish of their invasion and thereby thwarted their plan. The Scottish thistle is still honored and held in high regard by the people and government of Scotland.

4. Biological Weapons

Biological weapons are perhaps the most disturbing and least ethical of all instruments of war, but what many people don’t know is that not all toxins are created in laboratories.

Cytotoxons and mycotoxins, like ricin from the castor bean and various types of fungi, all have serious nerve disrupting properties. Although much more damaging chemical weapons such as Anthrax has been developed, the amount of raw “mess-you-up” power that occurs in nature is still astonishing. While most often these sorts of biological weapons are used in crop dusting and pesticide application, they are still capable of bringing about damage in a war.

5. Curry bomb

It was only a matter of time before Indian food was utilized for its destructive power, and that is precisely what the curry bomb does. An 88-mm grenade filled with phosphorous, red hot chilies and pepper, this bomb can bring victims to their knees in seconds.

Designed specifically for smoking terrorists out of caves and other hiding places, the curry bomb creates a smoke screen of intense, eye watering, debilitating chili powder in as little as 5 seconds. This technology can be tank-mounted or hand-held, and is sure to be the single most contributing factor to a decrease in terrorism and an increase in awful action movie lines.

6. Gunpowder

Stick with me here. Although it is mostly a product of chemistry, gunpowder (and therefore every firearm, rocket launch and nuclear bomb since) can be attributed directly to plants.

Created by the Chinese over a thousand years ago, gunpowder’s active and most powerful ingredient is potassium nitrate. By mixing straw (plant), wood ashes (burned plant), and manure (used to be a plant) into a hole and letting the mixture sit and get all scientific on itself for a year, the remaining by product is the incredibly flammable potassium nitrate. Although the involvement of the plant in the average gun battle seems inconsequential, it is in fact rather vital.


Plants have been used for evil since the dawn of time. While they are pretty to look at, lovely to smell, and an excellent get-out-jail-free card for married men around the globe, never underestimate the raw stopping power that lurks just beneath the surface of the average plant.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Bah? The Internet!

In 1995 Newsweek said that nobody would ever buy books or airline tickets on the Internet:

After two decades online, I'm perplexed. It's not that I haven't had a gas of a good time on the Internet. I've met great people and even caught a hacker or two. But today, I'm uneasy about this most trendy and oversold community. Visionaries see a future of telecommuting workers, interactive libraries and multimedia classrooms. They speak of electronic town meetings and virtual communities. Commerce and business will shift from offices and malls to networks and modems. And the freedom of digital networks will make government more democratic.

Baloney. Do our computer pundits lack all common sense? The truth in no online database will replace your daily newspaper, no CD-ROM can take the place of a competent teacher and no computer network will change the way government works.

Consider today's online world. The Usenet, a worldwide bulletin board, allows anyone to post messages across the nation. Your word gets out, leapfrogging editors and publishers. Every voice can be heard cheaply and instantly. The result? Every voice is heard. The cacophany more closely resembles citizens band radio, complete with handles, harrasment, and anonymous threats. When most everyone shouts, few listen. How about electronic publishing? Try reading a book on disc. At best, it's an unpleasant chore: the myopic glow of a clunky computer replaces the friendly pages of a book. And you can't tote that laptop to the beach. Yet Nicholas Negroponte, director of the MIT Media Lab, predicts that we'll soon buy books and newspapers straight over the Intenet. Uh, sure.

What the Internet hucksters won't tell you is tht the Internet is one big ocean of unedited data, without any pretense of completeness. Lacking editors, reviewers or critics, the Internet has become a wasteland of unfiltered data. You don't know what to ignore and what's worth reading. Logged onto the World Wide Web, I hunt for the date of the Battle of Trafalgar. Hundreds of files show up, and it takes 15 minutes to unravel them—one's a biography written by an eighth grader, the second is a computer game that doesn't work and the third is an image of a London monument. None answers my question, and my search is periodically interrupted by messages like, "Too many connections, try again later."

Won't the Internet be useful in governing? Internet addicts clamor for government reports. But when Andy Spano ran for county executive in Westchester County, N.Y., he put every press release and position paper onto a bulletin board. In that affluent county, with plenty of computer companies, how many voters logged in? Fewer than 30. Not a good omen.

Point and click:
Then there are those pushing computers into schools. We're told that multimedia will make schoolwork easy and fun. Students will happily learn from animated characters while taught by expertly tailored software.Who needs teachers when you've got computer-aided education? Bah. These expensive toys are difficult to use in classrooms and require extensive teacher training. Sure, kids love videogames—but think of your own experience: can you recall even one educational filmstrip of decades past? I'll bet you remember the two or three great teachers who made a difference in your life.

Then there's cyberbusiness. We're promised instant catalog shopping—just point and click for great deals. We'll order airline tickets over the network, make restaurant reservations and negotiate sales contracts. Stores will become obselete. So how come my local mall does more business in an afternoon than the entire Internet handles in a month? Even if there were a trustworthy way to send money over the Internet—which there isn't—the network is missing a most essential ingredient of capitalism: salespeople.

What's missing from this electronic wonderland? Human contact. Discount the fawning techno-burble about virtual communities. Computers and networks isolate us from one another. A network chat line is a limp substitute for meeting friends over coffee. No interactive multimedia display comes close to the excitement of a live concert. And who'd prefer cybersex to the real thing? While the Internet beckons brightly, seductively flashing an icon of knowledge-as-power, this nonplace lures us to surrender our time on earth. A poor substitute it is, this virtual reality where frustration is legion and where—in the holy names of Education and Progress—important aspects of human interactions are relentlessly devalued.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Can Vitamin C Prevent or Treat Cold Symptoms?

Vitamin C has been studied for many years as a possible treatment for colds, or as a way to prevent colds. But findings have been somewhat inconsistent. Overall, experts have found little to no benefit for vitamin C preventing or treating the common cold.

In a July 2007 study, researchers wanted to discover whether taking 200 milligrams or more of vitamin C daily could reduce the frequency, duration, or severity of a cold. After reviewing 60 years of clinical research, they found that when taken after a cold starts, vitamin C supplements do not make a cold shorter or less severe. When taken daily, vitamin C very slightly shorted cold duration -- by 8% in adults and by 14% in children.

But researchers found the most effect on people who were in extreme conditions, such as marathon runners. In this group, taking vitamin C cut their risk of catching a cold in half.

So what does all this mean?

The average adult who suffers with a cold for 12 days a year would still suffer for 11 days a year if that person took a high dose of vitamin C every day during that year.

For the average child who suffers about 28 days of cold illness a year, taking daily high-dose vitamin C would still mean 24 days of cold illness.

When vitamin C was tested for treatment of colds in 7 separate studies, vitamin C was no more effective than placebo at shortening the duration of cold symptoms.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

It Would Be Far Easier for Americans to Elect Black President Than Unmarried President

Marriage has a Darwinian ability to endure. It alters itself however necessary to continue to be relevant and useful in people's lives. It is a shape shifter. It is like cockroaches and alligators. Marriage will be here long after humans are gone.

People will always want intimacy with one chosen person and you cannot have intimacy without privacy, which is why couples draw circles of privacy around themselves. They demand that family, neighbors and the law respect their union, and that is why we have marriage.

As for the idea of creating such a thing as secular civil unions that would offer couples every legal advantage of marriage without using the language of marriage—as they now do in Europe—this makes perfect sense...or rather, it would if we Americans did not happen to hold the concept of "marriage" in such rapturous reverence. The problem is, in this country, a civil union will always be seen as a badge of second-class citizenship.

The Europeans do not share our innate cultural reverence for marriage, at least not the northern Europeans. The Portuguese still do. Here's the thing: the unit of reverence in Europe is the family, which is why a child born today of unmarried parents in Sweden has a better chance of growing up in a house with both of his parents than a child born to a married couple in America. Here we revere the couple, there they revere the family. This is also why homosexuals in Europe have no comprehension of why homosexuals in America are fighting for the right to marry: They are perfectly happy to simply have equal civil rights, without the language of marriage. But here in America, marriage still has a mystical, intangible power: It is a passport to adulthood and respectability and to a certain extent citizenship. Any relationship less than "married" is considered temporary and not worthy of honor.

It's unfortunate that there exists only one path in America to complete social legitimacy, and that is marriage. For instance, that it would be far easier for Americans to elect a black president or a female president than an unmarried president. That would truly feel like cause for suspicion. Which means—of course—there is a massive pressure to apply this particular shape to one's relationship. Which might explain why Americans marry more—and, sadly, divorce more—than anyone else in the industrialized world. So the downside is that there is a rush to the altar—couples want to earn that badge of instant respect—when they perhaps are unready, or not mature enough, to actually take on that commitment.

In the ancient world, marriage was a tribal bond—a means of legitimizing heirs and building family dynasties. In the medieval world, marriage was an economic bond—a means of safely passing wealth from one generation to the next. During the height of the Catholic church's power, marriage was a religious bond—a lifelong, unbreakable contract to God, sealed by a priest. During the Industrial Revolution, with the rise of prosperity across the Western world, marriage finally gained the luxury of becoming a bond of love, an expression of individualistic choice.

Today, marriage is a curious amalgam of all those things. Modern marriage is first and foremost a romantic and private union, but the tax laws and inheritance laws and religious implications that still surround this institution indicate that marriage has evolved without casting away its earlier purposes or assumptions. It's like we just keep building on this thing, piling new advancements on the old model.

Modern marriage as a car strangely fashioned out of an old abandoned horse carriage, built upon the framework of a mule cart. All the original engineering is still there, underneath it all.

Whether we are aware of it or not, we carry into our modern marriages the expectations and social memory of thousands of years of history, as well as our own set of newfangled tools that we use to tinker daily with the old machine. We alter and customize the thing every century, every generation, every day—both in the courts and in our own homes. And marriage accepts our modifications gracefully. Marriage adapts, evolves and somehow keeps chugging along.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Can Your Microwave Oven Really Measure Speed of Light?

Can your microwave oven really measure the speed of light? Yes, it can be done. And since many of the suggested experiments also involve chocolate, it will be done. Oh yes, it will be done.

First, a brief summary of the facts:

Fact One:

Microwaves are part of the electromagnetic spectrum. The electromagnetic spectrum includes radio waves, infrared waves, visible light, and ultraviolet, and can best be described as a bunch of things that behave the way visible light does, even though we can't see them, which is a shame, since that would eliminate the need for recreational drugs. Microwaves move at the same speed that light does.

Fact Two:

Microwave ovens produce microwaves in a special configuration, called a standing wave. A standing wave. A standing wave is a wave that so perfectly fits its container that it looks like it looks like it's standing still. Most people have created standing waves as children playing with jump ropes. If you lift and push at just the right times, the jump rope will have one place that moves into peaks and valleys, while staying still at the two ends. If you put a little more effort into it, you can make the jump rope have two places that form peaks and valleys, and three points where it seems to be holding still.

This s-like curve is one wave, and the length of it is one wavelength.

Inside the microwave, the peaks and valleys of a standing wave translate to big time oscillation, and that oscillation cooks the food. The nodes, or places where the jump rope seems to stand still, translate to no oscillation.

That's why the microwave tray rotates. It has to move the food in order to make sure that every part of your frozen dinner is exposed to the places of highest oscillation. If it just stayed still, the peas would be roughly at the temperature of the center of the sun, and be little green time bombs waiting to nuke your tongue, while the tater tots would be frozen, ready to break your teeth when you bite into it. Because frozen foods hate us as much as we hate them. It's inarguable. That's why I put it in the ‘facts' section.

Fact three:

The number of waves that blow by a certain point per second is said to be the frequency of the waves. The frequency, the wavelengths, and the speed of waves have been established as having a set relationship with one another.

(Frequency) x (Wavelength) = Speed

This makes sense both logically and experimentally. For example, if you were sitting on the side of a one mile loop trail, and a runner ran past you once every ten minutes, you could determine their speed like this:

(6 loops per hour) X (1 mile per loop) = A speed of six miles per hour.

If six full waves cycled past you in one hour, the speed would be the same.

And so, we are armed with all the theoretical knowledge we need. Into the fray!

Every site I've been to agrees that you'll need a metric ruler and a microwave with the product label still attached, but the rotating tray brutally ripped out. They disagree, however, on the proper experimental material to nuke. Some sites say you'll need whipped egg whites on a plate. Others favor marshmallows in a dish. I'm going to recommend you go with the ones that recommend either wide chocolate bars or a layer of chocolate chips over a tray. Unless you can find chocolate marshmallows.

The brandy snifter is optional.

Whatever sacrificial material you use – put it in the microwave and nuke it. Keep an eye on it as it cooks, and take it out just as you see spots on it start to melt.

Since the tray isn't moving, it won't melt evenly. Certain points will have begun to bubble and smoke while leaving the rest of the food unharmed and undeservedly smug. Use the ruler to measure the distance between those two points. That is half the wavelength of the microwaves that the oven produces.

Double that distance, and you'll have the wavelength of the waves emitted by the microwave.

This is the tough part. I kept it from you until now because I didn't want you to bail on your education. The information of label on most microwaves is on the back. Yes, I know that's where the spiders and rotting pieces of tuna are, but you have only yourself to blame. You should have cleaned more regularly.

On the label, there will be information as to what frequency the microwave emits waves at. After that, it's simple.

(Frequency) x (Wavelength) = Speed of Light.

And then you get to eat the chocolate.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Michael Jackson Had a Patent

Patent number 5255452, filed in 1992, shows how Michael Jackson and his dancers could lean at 45-degree angles during live performances of the song "Smooth Criminal".

A system for engaging shoes with a hitch mans to permit a person standing on a stage surface to lean forwardly beyond his or her center of gravity, comprising:
at least one shoe having a heel with a first engagement means, said first engagement means comprising a recess formed in a heel of said shoe covered with a heel slot plane located at a bottom region of said heel, said heel slot plate having a slot formed therein with a relatively wide opening at a leading edge of said heel and a narrower terminal end rearward of said leading edge, said recess being larger in size above said terminal end of said slot than is said terminal end of said slot; and
a second engagement means, detachably engageable with said first engagement means, comprising a hitch member having an enlarged head portion connected by a narrower shank portion to a means for raising and lowering said head of said hitch member above and substantially level with or below said stage surface, said head portion being larger in size than said terminal end of said slot and said shank portion being narrower than said terminal end of said slot, wherein said hitch member can be moved through apertures in said stage surface between a projecting position raised above said stage surface and a retracted position at or below the stage surface, and when said head portion of said hitch member is raised above said stage surface, said first engagement means can be detachably engaged with said projecting hitch member, thereby allowing a person wearing the shoes to lean forwardly with his or her normal center of gravity beyond a front region of said shoes, and maintain said forward lean.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

I Never Said She Stole My Money: 7 Different Meanings

"I never said she stole my money" has 7 different meanings depending on the stressed word.

I didn't say she stole my money - someone else said it.

I didn't say she stole my money - I didn't say it.

I didn't say she stole my money - I only implied it.

I didn't say she stole my money - I said someone did, not necessarily her.

I didn't say she stole my money - I considered it borrowed, even though she didn't ask.

I didn't say she stole my money - only that she stole money.

I didn't say she stole my money - she stole stuff which cost me money to replace.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Practical Advise for Living in a Car Long-Term: Locations, Hygiene, Socializing

1. Most Wal-Marts let you park overnight for free.
2. Rest stops can be good, especially if there is security provided.
3. Most National Forests (grasslands, etc.) and Bureau of Land Management properties allow free camping for up to 2 weeks (but no one actually checks).
4. Church parking lots are usually good.
5. Some hotels, especially along the interstate, won't notice if you park overnight. However, some will kick you out at 3 am so it's a craps shoot.
6. Find a place at least an hour before sundown so you're not driving around at night.
7. Sleeping in nicer residential neighborhoods will get the cops called on you. Sleeping in bad residential neighborhoods will get you robbed.
7. Bum a place from friends. Join and set your status to "Traveling at the moment."

1. Staying clean is very important. Trust me on this. People trust you more when you're clean and you'll have an easier time spinning yourself as "adventurous" rather than "destitute."
2. If you can find a restroom with a lock, you can take a fairly complete bath with a washcloth and a sink.
3. If you can't actually bathe, do a whore's bath once a day. Get some hand sanitizer, the gel with high alcohol content, and rub yourself down, especially in the stinky areas. It won't get you clean per se and the alcohol will dry out your skin, but it'll disinfect you and kill all the smell-causing microorganisms. Follow this with deodorant and baby powder.
4. The easiest way to look clean and safe is to keep your hair and beard trimmed. The simplest and cheapest way to do this is to get some inexpensive hair clippers and clip it short once or twice a week.
5. Dark clothes hide stains. If you can't wash clothes regularly, turn them inside out and place them in direct sunlight to inhibit funk and get that nice outdoorsy smell.
6. Avoid cologne! Masking odors is the enemy. You want to have as neutral a smell as possible.
7. Unkept hair and powerful body odor make it much more difficult to get help from people.
Baby wipes are awesome.

1. Libraries! Internet! Search for a job and read books! Keep your mind occupied and hone your intelligence.
2. Parks, especially dog parks, are great places for meeting people
3. If you find yourself in a hobo camp, like the ones that crop up in national forests and BLM camp sites, if you can make a hot cup of coffee you will have both friends and (more importantly) people to watch your back. It's as simple as Wal-Mart-->camp stove-->stovetop coffee maker. Take creamers and sugar from gas stations and the like. Oh yeah, it doesn't hurt to have 5-10 gallons of water in your car, especially if you're away from a city.
4. If you maintain yourself, and you look clean and safe, you'll have an easy time convincing people that you're adventurous rather than destitute. Adventurous gets you much farther than destitute, because secretly (or not so secretly) a lot of people our age want exactly what you have--The freedom of the road, no responsibility, time to write and reflect, no obligations, nothing but days and weeks to focus on yourself. Being destitute might get you a dollar or a cup of coffee. Being adventurous might get you in a pretty girl's bed, or better yet, a hot shower..
5. Go to where the young people are and mix it up once in a while. You'll fit right in as long as you stay clean and pretty. The easiest way back into the game is through a social network, so work on building a strong one.
6. Always, always be on the bounce. Keep an eye peeled for opportunities. Don't let the massive chasm of unencumbered time overwhelm you. Have a project for every single day. Make a plan and stay clean, because as fun as it is to tramp around for a while, you don't want to do this forever.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

26 Year Old Female with a (Slightly Used) Vagina Seeks Arranged Marriage


So I'm single, tired of mingling, and looking to get hitched. Thing is, I�m pretty frustrated with the legwork and my solution is to pass the buck on to my parents and let them go ahead and choose for me, the way it was (is) done in the good old days (South Asia). So if you're a single guy, hoping for marriage and kids (not more than two) in the future, and willing to roll with the punches, let's get your folks in on this too.

Here's what I'm thinking. You respond to this with your parental contact info, which I will pass along to mine. Then, I figure we can just butt out until the wedding. Let's let them hammer out the details, investigate compatibility, and argue about a dowry.

Me: 26 year old female with a generally positive outlook on life, one salary, three piercings, zero tattoos, one car, one hamster, and one (slightly used) vagina. I'd be willing to consider getting re-virginized if this is a deal-breaker for your family.

I'd prefer not to convert to your religion, but I would consider relocation if my travel expenses were covered.

Looking forward to the big day. Maybe we'll meet once or twice before then. I'm leaving that up to my mom.

Location: Seattle
it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID at Craigslist: 1007286964

Friday, August 20, 2010

9 Top Resolutions

1. Spend more time with family and friends
A lot of us feel we don’t spend enough quality time with those we love. So pick up the phone and start arranging experiences that you can do together.
Handy hint: Like this idea? Send an e-mail invite to a picnic in a centrally located park. Everyone brings food and drink – and a smorgasbord of catch-up relaxation results.

2. Get fit
Visualise yourself the way you want to be and promise yourself rewards along the way. Get into the mindset of “No excuses!”
Handy hint: Make a date today with a good pal to walk once a week for 50 minutes – and take your first baby steps to better health.

3. Lose weight
With about 60% of adults overweight or obese, weight loss remains a popular resolution.
Handy hint: Don’t stop eating the things you love, just eat them less. Watch your portion sizes with resolve, daily, and the weight will drop!

4. Quit smoking
This is a hard habit to break because nicotine is extremely addictive.
Handy hint: Don’t determine to give up smoking when other aspects of your life are stressful. Wait until you’re in a good space – and get plenty of emotional support to keep you on track.

5. Smell the roses
Lost your mojo? The easiest way to kick-start your joie de vivre is to do something outside the square.
Handy hint: Remember too that small is beautiful and focus on life’s minutiae, like a great song on the radio, a tasty peach, a pet’s licks, your friends’ thoughtfulness, an unexpected invitation.

6. Quit drinking
If drinking is doing you more harm than good, stop altogether, learn to moderate your tipples or call Alcoholics Anonymous for the support you need. Those living with alcoholics will also find friends at AA.
Handy hint: Resolve to drink two non-alcoholic drinks of your choice for every alcoholic drink. That’s a brilliant start!

7. Learn something new
There’s nothing more esteem-building than getting an additional qualification under your belt. Your career options widen, you meet new people and you exercise your brain.
Handy hint: Community colleges offer a plethora of inexpensive courses. Remember: nothing ventured, nothing gained!

8. I want to help people
Daily the world shrinks into a smaller global village with catastrophes reaching us daily via the media, so it’s no surprise that “volunteering holidays” are booming worldwide.
Handy hint: If time is an issue, donate furniture, clothing and other household items for those less fortunate in life than you.

9. I want to get organised
Whether it’s your home, office, clothes cupboard or garden shed, almost everyone wishes they had better systems and processes in place.
Handy hint: Take one untidy aspect of your life and draw up a plan to get on top of it. Give yourself three months to achieve a sense of improvement, and once successful, apply the ­­same principles to more and bigger things.

10 Old-School Ways to Remember Stuff

1. Count to 20
Here's a fun way for the kids to learn:
One, Two, buckle my shoe, Three, Four, knock at the door, Five, Six, pick up sticks, Seven, Eight, lay them straight, Nine, Ten, a big fat hen, Eleven, Twelve, dig and delve, Thirteen, Fourteen, maids a-courting, Fifteen, Sixteen, maids in the kitchen, Nineteen, Twenty, my plate's empty.

2. The Four Main Compass Directions
Simply remember the acronym NEWS: North at the top; East on the right; West on the left; South at the bottom.

3. Months of the Year
A physical mnemonic trick will help you remember how many days are in each month. Hold your clenched fists together, side by side. Begin with your left hand, naming the knuckle of your little finger as January. Next, the valley or dip between the first two knuckles is February, and the next knuckle is March, and so on. All the knuckles represent months with 31 days, and the valleys the shorter months.

4. The Order of the Planets
ercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune
Try these phrases to help you memorize the order: My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nachos OR My Very Educated Mother Just Sent Us Nowhere

5. The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World
1. Statue of Zeus at Olympia
2. Lighthouse (Pharos) of Alexandria
3. Mausoleum of Halicarnassus
4. Pyramids of Egypt
5. Hanging Gardens of Babylon
6. Temple of Artemis at Ephesus
7. Colossus of Rhodes
Use this mnemonic phrase to recall them: Seems Like Mata Hari Picked Her Targets Carefully.

6. Musical Notes
In the 1965 film The Sound of Music, Julie Andrews's character Maria teaches the children music. Her song may help you.
Do=doe, a female deer
Re=ray, a drop of golden sun
Mi=me, a name I call myself
Fa=far, a long, long way to run
So=sew, a needle pulling thread
La=la, a note to follow "so"
Ti=tea, a drink with jam and bread
Which will bring us back to "Do"

7. Counting to Six in French
un, deux, trois, quatre, cinq & six
Here's a phrase to help you count.
Un, deux, trois, cat sank—cease, please!

8. The 12 Apostles
List the dedicated followers of Jesus with this well-known Sunday school rhyme:
This is the way the disciples run Peter, Andrew, James and John, Phillip and Bartholomew, Thomas next and Matthew, too. James the less and Judas the greater, Simon the zealot and Judas the traitor.

9. The Four Gospels
The first four books of the New Testament are Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
Try this to help you recite them, and you'll impress your Sunday School teacher: "Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John went to bed with their trousers on."

10. Basic DIY Techniques
Don't waste time, do things the right way the first time. Just think this: Righty-tighty, Lefty-loosey.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

21 Odd and Fun Facts about Music

1. The only guy in ZZ Top who doesn’t have a beard is Frank Beard.
2. None of Elvis’s films got nominated for Oscar, but he did win three Grammy Awards – for his gospel recordings.
3. John Lennon wrote Good morning, good morning after hearing a Corn Flakes commercial.
4. Marilyn Monroe got a white poodle named Mafia from Frank Sinatra.
5. The airplane that Buddy Holly died in was called American Pie. Don McLean wrote a song with the same name about the accident.
6. Duran Duran was named after a mad scientist from the Jane Fonda movie Barbarella.
7. The first CD that was pressed in the U.S. was Bruce Springsteen’s Born in the USA.
8. Before composing Beethoven dipped his head in cold water.
9. Like humans, birds can learn music while they are still in the egg stage.
10. Mozart was five years old when he wrote his first piece.
11. The first pop video was released in 1975. It was Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen.
12. In 1976 Barry Manilow sang a chart topping song named I write the songs. The song wasn’t written by him.
13. Termites will eat wood two times faster when listening to heavy metal.
14. When Madonna was 15 years old, she got grounded for the whole summer, for sneaking out to see David Bowie in concert.
15. In the year 1988 tenor Luciano Pavarotti received a record 165 curtain calls at a Berlin opera house.
16. Make music not war : Monaco’s national orchestra is bigger that its army.
17. Wham !’s hit single Wake me up before you go go was written by George Michael who was inspired by the note that was left to his hotel room by another band member Andrew Ridgeley. The note was mistakenly written as “Don’t forget to wake me up up before you go go, George”.
18. House of the rising sun by The Animals was recorded with only 15 minutes because the band was on a tight budget. In spite of that the song went all the way to number one in 1964.
19. The longest song title is 305 characters (including spaces) : The Sad But True Story Of Ray Mingus, The Lumberjack Of Bulk Rock City, And His Never Slacking Stribe In Exploiting The So Far Undiscovered Areas Of The Intention To Bodily Intercourse From The Opposite Species Of His Kind, During Intake Of All The Mental Condition That Could Be Derived From Fermentation by Rednex.
20. When Billy Crystal was a child, his babysitter was the legendary Billie Holiday.
21. Suzanne Vega is considered the “mother” of the mp3 format. The creators of the mp3 used her voice from the song Tom’s Diner for analyzing the different sound spectrums when creating the compression algorithm.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Stupid Shit People Actually Put On Their Resumes

None of this is made up. People really did put this stupid crazy shit on their resumes or job applications.
1. I am very detail-oreinted.
2. My intensity and focus are at inordinately high levels, and my ability to complete projects on time is unspeakable.
3. Thank you for your consideration. Hope to hear from you shorty!
4. Enclosed is a ruff draft of my resume.
5. It’s best for employers that I not work with people.
6. Here are my qualifications for you to overlook.
7. I am a quick leaner, dependable, and motivated.
8. If this resume doesn’t blow your hat off, then please return it in the enclosed envelope.
9. My fortune cookie said, “Your next interview will result in a job.” And I like your company in particular.
10. I saw your ad on the information highway, and I came to a screeching halt.
11. Insufficient writing skills, thought processes have slowed down some. If I am not one of the best, I will look for another opportunity.
12. Please disregard the attached resume-it is terribly out of date.
13. Seek challenges that test my mind and body, since the two are usually inseparable.
14. Graduated in the top 66% of my class.
15. Reason for leaving last job: The owner gave new meaning to the word paranoia. I prefer to elaborate privately.
16. Previous experience: Self-employed-a fiasco.
17. Exposure to German for two years, but many words are inappropriate for business.
18. Experience: Watered, groomed, and fed the family dog for years.
19. I am a rabid typist.
20. I have a bachelorette degree in computers.
21. Excellent memory; strong math aptitude; excellent memory; effective management skills; and very good at math.
22. Strengths: Ability to meet deadlines while maintaining composer.
23. I worked as a Corporate Lesion.
24. Reason for leaving last job: Pushed aside so the vice president’s girlfriend could steal my job.
25. Married, eight children. Prefer frequent travel.
26. Objective: To have my skills and ethics challenged on a daily basis.
27. Special skills: Thyping.
28. My ruthlessness terrorized the competition and can sometimes offend.
29. I can play well with others.
30. Personal Goal: To hand-build a classic cottage from the ground up using my father-in-law.
31. Objective: I want a base salary of $50-$60,000 dollars, not including bonus. And some decent benefits. Like a retirement plan, health insurance, personal or sick days.
32. Experience: Provided correct answers to customers’ questions.
33. Education: Graduated from predatory school with honors.
34. Never been fired, although it could happen anytime now.
35. I have happily been a “kept man” for the past 10 years.
36. Have extensive experience in turkey manufactures as well as new product development and implementation.
37. I am accustomed to speaking in front of all kinds of audiences. I make points as well as I can.
38. Personal: Five children. Dog: Jasper. Cat: Morris. Gerbil: Binky.
39. While in military, was instrumental in creation of a treat detection system.
40. My compensation package at my last job included a base salary of $64,500 with excellent benefits including flextime. I am looking for a position in which I can work a more flexible schedule.
41. Hire me and you won’t regret it - I am funny, cute, smart and creative… really.
42. Referees available upon request.
43. Previous rank: Senior instigator.
44. I have recently sold my home and I now live in a large RV so I will be able to relocate quickly.
45. Reason for leaving: They stopped paying me.
46. Cover letter: Desire the chance to showcase my delightful personality, intelligence and superior judgment, which are so hard to find these days.
47. Personal achievements: Successfully played “Chop Sticks” on a toy piano with my big toes.
48. Objective: To obtain a position where I can make a difference, infecting others with my professionalism, enthusiasm and dedication.
49. Strengths: Impersonal skills.
50. Special interests: I like any projects that are fun.
51. Please explain any breaks in your employment career: 15 minute coffee break while working at a home improvement store.
52. Vocational plans: Sea World.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Why God Never Received a PhD

1. He had only one major publication.
2. It was in Hebrew.
3. It had no references.
4. It wasn't published in a refereed journal.
5. Some even doubt he wrote it by himself.
6. It may be true that he created the world, but what has he done since then?
7. His cooperative efforts have been quite limited.
8. The scientific community has had a hard time replicating his results.
9. He never applied to the ethics board for permission to use human subjects.
10. When one experiment went awry he tried to cover it by drowning his subjects.
11. When subjects didn't behave as predicted, he deleted them from the sample.
12. He rarely came to class, just told students to read the book.
13. Some say he had his son teach the class.
14. He expelled his first two students for learning.
15. Although there were only 10 requirements, most of his students failed his tests.
16. His office hours were infrequent and usually held on a mountain top.
17. No record of working well with colleagues.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

20 Things You Didn't Know About Light

1. God commanded, “Let there be light,” but it didn’t happen for nearly half a million years. That’s how long after the Big Bang the universe took to expand enough to allow photons (light particles) to travel freely.

2. Those photons are still running loose, detectable as the cosmic microwave background, a microwave glow from all parts of the sky.

3. Light moves along at full “light speed”—186,282.4 miles per second—only in a vacuum. In the dense matrix of a diamond, it slows to just 77,500 miles per second.

4. Diamonds are the Afghan­istan of gemstones: Any entering photon quickly gets bogged down. It takes a lot of pinging back and forth in a thicket of carbon atoms to find an exit. This action is what gives diamonds their dazzling sparkle.

5. Eyeglasses can correct vision because light changes speed when it passes from air to a glass or plastic lens; this causes the rays to bend.

6. Plato fancied that we see by shooting light rays from our eyes.

7. The Greek philosopher was not completely wrong. Like all living things, humans are bio­luminescent: We glow. We are brightest during the afternoon, around our lips and cheeks. The cause may be chemical reactions involving molecular fragments known as free radicals.

8. Bioluminescence is the largest source of light in the oceans; 90 percent of all creatures who live below about 1,500 feet are luminous.

9. World War II aviators used to spot ships by the bio­luminescence in their wakes. In 1954 Jim Lovell (later the pilot of Apollo 13) used this trick to find his darkened aircraft carrier.

10. Incandescent bulbs convert only 10 percent of the energy they draw into light, which is why Europe will outlaw them by 2012. Most of the electricity turns into unwanted heat.

11. In the confined space of an Easy-Bake oven, a 100-watt bulb can create a temperature of 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

12. Light has no mass, but it does have momentum. Later this year the Planetary Society will launch LightSail-1, attempting to capture the pressure of sunlight the way a boat’s sail gathers the wind.

13. Laser beams bounced off mirrors left behind by Apollo astronauts show that the moon is moving 1.5 inches farther from Earth each year.

14. Visible light makes up less than one ten-billionth of the electromagnetic spectrum, which stretches from radio waves to gamma rays.

15. Goldfish can see infrared radiation that is invisible to us. Bees, birds, and lizards have eyes that pick up ultraviolet.

16. Photography means “writing with light.” English astronomer John Herschel, whose father discovered infrared, coined the term.

17. Shoot now: The “golden hour,” just after sunrise and before sunset, produces the prettiest shadows and colors for photographs.

18. Day and night are everywhere the same length on the vernal equinox, which occurs this year on March 20.

19. Auroras light up the night sky when solar wind particles excite atoms in the upper atmosphere. Oxygen mostly shines green; nitrogen contributes blue and red.

20. But to the Inuits, auroras are spirits of the dead kicking around the head of a walrus.

[Via Discover Magazine]

Why Does Texas Rank Last in High School Diplomas?

How can Texas rank last in the nation — 51st — in the percentage of adults with high school diplomas, and simultaneously rank 22nd in the percentage attending at least some college?

The complicated answer involves more than the quality of the K-12 education system. The figures, based on the percentage of adults over 25 years old with various levels of education, come from a review of 2008 census bureau data by the Brookings Institution, which put data on education attainment from every state into this nifty web widget. It came as part of a larger study called the State of Metropolitan America, released in May (which includes some other interesting data on Texas cities).

In a ranking of the 50 states plus Washington, D.C. in educational attainment, Texas was all over the map: 51st in high school (79.6 percent); 22nd in some college (22.6 percent); 44th in associate’s degrees (6.3 percent); 31st in bachelor’s degrees (25.3 percent); and 36th in graduate degrees (8.3 percent). The leading factor driving down the state’s rankings has little to do with the quality of public schools and everything to do with the rapid rate of immigration, said Alan Berube, senior fellow and research director at Brookings, a left-leaning policy think-tank.

Many Mexican and Latin American immigrants “came to Texas as adults. They didn’t come there to finish high school. They came there to work. So that depresses the indicator,” Berube says. Further, the wide gap between high school and college attainment indicates a relatively large percentage of Texans who do complete high school go on to college, with many graduating, he says.

The same trends can be seen in California — the other huge state with rapid growth in immigration — with an even more severe spread between high school and college attainment. The sunshine state ranked 49th in high school attainment, yet 15th and 16th, respectively, in the percentage of adults with bachelor’s and graduate degrees.

In addition, the rankings can be deceiving because almost every state in the nation is clustered between 80 and 90 percent, so the state ranking last isn’t necessarily so far behind others ranking much higher. “But somebody’s got to be 51st,” Berube said, “and it turns out that’s Texas.”

At the same time, Houston, Austin and Dallas are three among only nine cities in America with the rare combination of fast growth, high levels of ethnic diversity and high educational attainment, Berube said. San Antonio, El Paso and McAllen, unfortunately, have the fast growth and diversity — but low educational attainment.

While some of the data should give policymakers concerns, none of it should be interpreted as solely a failure of the Texas education system, Berube said. Many Texas adults grew up elsewhere, and fast growth in Texas cities speaks for itself — people who live elsewhere want to move here. As for education levels, the real demographic shift will come when today’s second- and third-graders — who are Hispanic and low-income in higher percentages than today’s Texas teenagers — get into high school. In 2008, the Hispanic population represented 36 percent of all Texans, but 46 percent of births, according to the Pew Hispanic Center. The latest enrollment report from the Texas Education Agency, from the 2008-09 school year, shows that Hispanic students now account for 48 percent of public school enrollment — and 65 percent of pre-kindergarten enrollment.

How Texas public schools perform in educating these students — many from Spanish-speaking families without a history of high school and college graduation — largely will determine the future prosperity of the state. The current levels of educational attainment are “certainly something to be concerned about,” Berube said. “But the focus should be more properly on how the schools are doing with the children of these immigrants.”

[Via Texas Tribune]

Monday, July 26, 2010

Brewery's Nanny State Beer Swipe

A brewery has launched a low alcohol beer called Nanny State after being branded irresponsible for creating the UK's "strongest beer".

Scottish brewer BrewDog, of Fraserburgh, was criticised for Tokyo* which has an alcohol content of 18.2%.

Campaigners welcomed the 1.1% alcohol Nanny State but said the name showed a lack of appreciation of the problem

The 3,000 limited edition bottles of Tokyo* contained six units of alcohol - twice the recommended daily limit.

The company had insisted the £9.99 high strength beer would help tackle the country's binge-drinking culture, because customers would drink it in smaller quantities.

But Alcohol Focus Scotland had branded that argument "deluded".

BrewDog founder James Watt explained on his blog: "Anyone who knows BrewDog, knows beer, or anyone has more common sense than a common (or garden) gnome will know that the scathing and unrelenting criticism we faced was pretty unjustified.

"If logic serves the same people who witch-hunted and publicly slated us should now offer us heartfelt support and public congratulations.

"However I fear that this, unfortunately, is an arena devoid of logic and reason."

Nanny State is described as a "mild imperial ale containing more hops per barrel than any other beer ever brewed in the UK".

It is being made available in limited quantities online for £2.49.

Jack Law, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland, said of the new Nanny State beer: "This is a positive move which proves that low strength doesn't compromise quality.

"However the name of the beer proves that once again this company is failing to acknowledge the seriousness of the alcohol problem facing Scotland."

BrewDog previously ran into controversy when drinks industry watchdog the Portman Group said its Speedball drink should be withdrawn from sale until its marketing was changed.

Speedballing is the name given to combining heroin and cocaine.

[Via BBC News]

Professional Vodka Tasters Keep Polish Tipple Pure

POZNAN, Poland (AFP) – For Poland's army of vodka tasters, the rules are strict: no smoking, no coffee, and no perfume, not to mention to the 6 am starts.

While in France cellar masters ensure the quality of fine wines, in Poland professional vodka tasters keep the potent tipple, first distilled in the region in mediaeval times, smooth and pure.

Krystyna Gbiorczyk, in charge of quality and taste control at a distillery in Poznan, western Poland, has for many years used her keen sense of taste and smell to safeguard the reputation of a top-selling brand name.

Samples of crystal clear vodka made using rye are heated and poured into covered glasses to capture all their aroma, she says.

The vodka is then closely observed, shaken, tasted and then evaluated on the basis of its strength, taste and smell.

"The regular tastings allow us to detect any significant differences between different batches of vodka and correct them to the standard we seek," adds Danuta Maranda, a quality control expert.

Last year the distillery launched an internal recruitment drive to find talented new tasters. Candidates had to discern between sweet, salty, acid or metallic-tasting vodkas and classify them according to the degree of alcohol content.

Among the new recruits was Malgorzata Novak, who landed a spot on the quality control team. Now she samples more than 20 bottles over an eight hour shift with her first sip of vodka at 6 am.

"I check for clarity, consistency and taste, of course. I do similar checks about every hour," she explains. If her taste buds give the all clear, bottling goes ahead.

When they're not tasting, the distillery's experts concoct the vodkas of tomorrow. Recently, Maranda received an order to create a vodka using red fruit.

Just as if she were creating a new perfume, she lines up a dozen vials of various natural fruity syrups and aromas ranging from the sweet flavour of cherry pits to the acidic smell of plums.

Pondering caramel-based colouring, like a modern-day alchemist, she seeks perfection over a period of three months.

"Its a difficult task to find harmony between the different elements, to get the right amounts and marry them well in the vodka we produce, like making a fine wine," she explains.

The unique sensibilities of the distillery's tasters are sometimes also solicited by the police to distinguish between authentic brands and black market counterfeit vodka.

"Counterfeit alcohol is often composed of products which give a similar taste to the original vodka, but large doses can be very dangerous," says Katarzyna Gbiorczyk. "The problem is that people who want to save money are risking their health."

In 2009, around 250 million litres (66 million US gallons) of vodka were sold in Poland, making the spirit second only in popularity to beer.