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Trees, beverages and outdoors. [Mar. 18th, 2008|07:05 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

lucore
Trees and Plants

White pine trees (Pinus strobus) are large coniferous plants native to eastern North America. The needles are 2-5 inches long, flexible, and blue-green in color. They typically stay on the tree for about 18 months before shedding. The cones are 3 to 6 inches long and slender. The needles are a good source of vitamin C (5 times more than oranges by weight) and can be used to make a healthy tea. Pine resin can be processed to make sealants and the sap can be processed to make turpentine. The wood is versatile and can be used for ship masts, dimensional lumber (2 by 4's, etc.), and paper. The wood can also be used to make 8'x10' sheets of plywood, which Chuck Norris uses as toilet paper.

Beverages

Absinthe is a distilled alcoholic of about 45%-75% ABV (90-150 proof) derived from herbs, including the flowers and leaves of the wormwood. Wormwood's scientific name is Artemisia absinthium which is where Absinthe gets its name. The liquor has a black licorice-like taste and is served with a sugar cube and water. You pour the water over the sugar cube and drink. It was believed for years to cause insanity and was used as an explanation of many violent murders and suicides. Many believed it was one of the reasons artisit Vincent Van Gogh cut off his ear. It started to make a comeback since the 1990's when it was learned that it was learned that Chuck Norris roundhouse kicked Van Gogh's ear off because he had a "listening problem". Now, it is legal in many countries.

The Great Outdoors

The Grand Canyon is located on the Colorado River in Arizona and lies mostly within the boundaries of Grand Canyon National Park (USA's first National Park). It is 277 miles long and ranges in width from 4 to 18 miles. At certain points it is over one mile deep. There are many recreational opportunities from casual sightseeing from the South Rim, to whitewater rafting, to hiking. The floor of the valley is accessible by foot, muleback, or by boat or raft from upriver. Hiking down to the river and back up to the rim in one day is discouraged by park officials because of the distance, steep and rocky trails, change in elevation, and danger of heat exhaustion. The longstanding scientific consensus has been that the canyon was created by the Colorado River over a period of 6 million years, but research released in 2008 suggests it may be a much longer 17 million year time span. Still other research says it occurred after Chuck Norris went skydiving, he told people he would not skydive again... just in case.
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(no subject) [Mar. 12th, 2008|10:35 am]
Learn 3 new things every day

lucore
Since Brian was a day off, I figured we'd all be a day off. Something to do with it being a leap year plus daylight savings or something. I don't know I'm not a chronologist. Anyway...

Plants and Trees

The hop plant (Humulus) grows in the Northern hemisphere in the temperate zones. It is in the Cannabaceae family making it a "cousin" of hemp. The female flowers of the hop plant are called hops and are a key ingredient in the making of beer. It is commonly called a vine however it is technically a bine. Vines use tendrils and suckers in order to climb, where the hop has stiff hairs and a stout vine in order to climb.

Beverages

Coffee use can be traced at least to as early as the 9th century, although it wasn't brewed. According to legend, Ethiopian shepherds were the first to observe the influence of the caffeine in coffee beans when the goats appeared to "dance" and to have an increased level of energy after consuming wild coffee berries. It wasn't until it reached Arabia that coffee beans were first roasted and brewed similarly as they are today, however.

Great Outdoors

Iceland is the world's 18th-largest island. The country is 39,768.5 sq mi in size, of which 62.7% is wasteland. Lakes and glaciers cover 14.3%; only 23% is vegetated. Iceland is located in the North Atlantic Ocean just south of the Arctic Circle. Many fjords (long, narrow bays with steep sides) punctuate its extensive coastline, making the island extremely beautiful.
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(no subject) [Mar. 10th, 2008|12:17 am]
Learn 3 new things every day

steaksammich
Ok, so I haven't posted in a month, but that's only because I'm a terrible person. And technically it's already Monday...but somewhere in the world it's still Sunday. So here we go with some learnin'!

Food
The first step in making a successful omlette is bring your eggs to room temperature. This allows for the eggs to cook on the outside quicker. You won't find this step listed in a French cookbook because the French don't keep their eggs in the refrigerator.

Sports
In the history of the game of baseball only two switch hitting second basemen have hit at least 10 triples in their age 28 season. Adam Dunn is the only active left fielder in the game to hit at least 40 home runs in his fifth season in the major leagues. Toby Harrah was the only player in his 20's during the 1970's to hit at least 20 home runs and steal 20 bases in a season while playing at least 20 games at second, third, and short. Carlton Fisk holds the record for consecutive games with a hit (18) for a catcher playing for the Boston Red Sox. I know these things (and so much more) because I just shelled out $29 to baseball-reference.com and that allows me to sort through any statistic and any situation in the game of baseball. Best $29 I ever spent.

and because I'm bored with military we'll go with...

Suicide
According to suicide statistics, Monday is the favored day for self-destruction. In 2005 Montana had more male suicides per capita than any other US State. Wyoming lead the way for women. Nebraska was second for both genders while Alaska was third for both. If I lived in states that boring I'd probably consider offing myself as well. But, in case you're worried, I wasn't googling suicide because I was looking into it. I googled "random facts" and this was better than "The surface area of an average-sized brick is 79 cm squared."

And that's all for tonight!
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Trees, Beverages, and Outdoors [Mar. 4th, 2008|01:29 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

lucore
Trees and Plants

Kudzu

Kudzu is a climbing, woody or semi-woody, perennial vine. It was introduced to the US from Japan and is currently taking over the southeast. The plant grows quickly and can attach to trees, houses and pretty much everything else. This invasive plant blocks out native plants in the US making it a real nuisance. It has been known to grow completely over trailers and abandoned homes making them disappear in the greenery. Ways of eradicating kudzu include herbicide, mowing, and goats.

Beverages

Stouts are dark ales made using roasted malts or roasted barley. Irish stout or dry stout is very dark or rich in color and it often has a toast-like or coffee-like taste. Most dry stouts use low amounts of hops and very dark roast malts. The malts are roasted almost to the point of burning. The most famous example, Guinness, is from Ireland. Its alcoholic content and dry flavor are both characterized as light, although it varies from country to country.

Outdoors

The El Yunque National Forest is the only tropical rain forest controlled by the USFS. It is located in Puerto Rico Although the forest is relatively small in size (28, 000 acres), it is extremely important. The national forest has a great biodiversity and amazing aesthetics. El Yunque has thousands of native plants including 150 fern species, 240 tree species (88 of these are endemic or rare and 23 are exclusively found in this forest). It can have an annual rainfall over 200 inches. The views and unique landscape attracts over 600,000 visitors annually.
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Psycho Thursday [Feb. 28th, 2008|10:39 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

road_to_hell
Television
Originally Psycho was to make its broadcast debut on network television in the fall of 1966.  However, right before it was to air, a woman, the daughter of Charles H. Percy, a Republican Senator from Illinois, was stabbed to death by an intruder.  Because of the circumstances, the movie was removed from the network schedule, and did not air on television until 1970.

Movies
Alfred Hitchcock went to great lengths to keep the ending to Psycho a secret.  He purchased the rights to the novel anonmously, and then went and bought every copy of the book he could find, trying to take it out of circulation.  He even
insisted that audiences should only be allowed to see the film from the start. This was unheard of as people are usually allowed to enter a theater at any point during a movie.

Crime
Psycho was based on serial killer Ed Gein.  While Gein was hardly the most prolific serial killer, his gained his infamy because of the necrophiliac aspect to his crimes.  He skinned and exhumed the corpses, and then decorated his home with parts of the corpses, and used the corpses to make clothing and furniture.
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It's FRIDAY! [Feb. 22nd, 2008|03:02 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

cajunsweets
[Current Mood |cheerfulcheerful]

HEALTH
Vitamins: Food vs Supplements
Vitamins have the following benifits: Maintain health, Maintain body functions (growth, digestion, nerve functions), Prevent illness and disease

First of all, Supplements should not be used instead of eating. In other words it should be used in addition to not instead of. The reason for this is because from food you also get proteins, carbohydrates, and fat which help repair the body and keep it going. Food also provides fibre and flavinoids which provide antioxidants. Without enough of these your body may find it hard to ward off disease or to recover from them. The best way to get vitamins is through healthy food such as fruits and veggies. Vitamin supplements dont have the same benifits as naturally occuring vitamins!!! This isn't to say supplements arent useful, just that it shouldnt be a substitution for getting it from food. Taking in more vitamins than the minimum daily allowance have been shown to prevent heart disease, osteoporisis, cancer, and other chronic diseases. But keep in mind that you can also OVERDOSE on vitamins.

Overdoses can be as simple as redness of the skin or as serious as damaged nerves and kidney stones. More info on overdose here

Another site with info and tons of links is: MedlinePlus

HOME REMEDIES
Clean Mirrors
 -Dryer Sheets
 -Toothpaste (tarnish)
 -Glade Air Freshner
 -Mott's Applesauce
 -Coffee Filters (leaves no lint!)

RECORDS
In 1997 Arulanantham Suresh Joachim (of Sir Lanka) balanced himself on one foot for 76hrs, 40 minutes!
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Thursday Drive-by! [Feb. 21st, 2008|09:14 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

road_to_hell
Television
In 1997, the Simpsons became the longest running animated prime-time television show, surpassing the Flintstones.  In 2003, it became the longest running prime-time comedy series.

Movies
Lon Chaney's great skill as a silent film actor came about as a result of his upbringing. Both of his parents were deaf-mutes, so he learned to communicate by expressive pantomime.

Crime
As if there weren't enough reasons to move to Hawaii, Honolulu is has the lowest murder rate for cities with a population of at least 250,000 people.  Baltimore, Maryland has the most
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Belize, 2008 race, and acronychal [Feb. 20th, 2008|08:42 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

wends
Happy wendsday.  I'm sick and it sucks, not because I'm sick but because I'm on vacation and I only ever get sick during vacations.

Travel
Belize
is a country in Central America. It is the only officially English speaking country in the region. Belize was a British colony for more than a century and was known as British Honduras until 1973. It became an independent nation within The Commonwealth in 1981.  Belize has a mix of races including Creole, Maya, Mestizo, East Indian, Chinese, Garifuna and Mennonite. Among its other cultural attractions, it has thousands of Maya archaeological temples and in 2001 UNESCO declared the Garifuna language, dance and music a "Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity", along with Honduras and Nicaragua. Belize is the only country in Central America without a Pacific coastline and also the only one with English as its official language. According to the most recent vegetation surveys, about sixty percent (60%) of Belize is forested, with only about twenty percent (20%) of the country's land subject to human uses (i.e. agricultural land and human settlements). Savanna, scrubland and wetland constitute extensive parts of the land. As a result, Belize's biodiversity is rich, both marine and terrestrial, with a host of flora and fauna. About thirty-seven percent (37%) of Belize's land territory falls under some form of official protected status. As such conservation activities remain an important priority in government policy with the notable example of having the only jaguar reserve in the world among its protected areas such as Red Creek Biological Reserve.

Government and Politics
2008's Current Race

Right now Barack Obama has 1,156 pledged delegates with 161 Superdelegates supposedly voting for him, giving him a total of 1,319
Right now Hillary Clinton has 1,016 pledged delegates with 234 Superdelegates supposedly voting for her, giving her a total of 1,250
The democratic candidate needs 2,025 to win the nomination.

Right now John McCain has 870 pledged delegates and 48 unpledged RNC delegates for a total of 918
Right now Mitt Romney, even though he has dropped out, has 286 pledged delegates
Right now Mike Huckabee has 214 pledged delegates and 3 unpledged RNC delegates for a total of 217
Right now Ron Paul has 16 pledged delegates.
The republican candidate needs 1,191 to win the nomination.

Word of the Week
Acronychal
Rising at sunset and setting at sunrise, as a star

Note: The word is sometimes incorrectly written acronical, achronychal, acronichal, and acronical.
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Saturday's Trivia [Feb. 16th, 2008|09:19 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

alamoo
Animals

The Sugar Glider (Petaurus breviceps) is a small gliding possum native to eastern and northern mainland Australia, New Guinea, and the Bismarck Archipelago, and introduced to Tasmania.The Sugar Glider is around 16 to 21 cm (6.3 to 7.5 inches) in length, with a tail almost as long as the body and almost as thick as a human thumb, and weighs between 90 and 150 grams (3 to 5.3 oz). The fur is generally pearl grey, with black and cream patches on the underbelly and black or grey ears. Where legal, the Sugar Glider is not difficult to breed in captivity under the right conditions, and small numbers have been legally and illegally exported to America where they have formed a breeding population for sale as pets. Breeding mills are a controversial subject. The Sugar Glider is a popular pet because of its lively and inquisitive nature; with plenty of attention, it bonds well to human companions.

Music

Guster became one of the most successful bands to hit the East Coast scene in the late '90s. Through relentless touring and humorous stage banter with the crowd, the band developed a strong, grassroots fan base that spread rapidly with a strong presence on the Internet. The Boston trio developed a unique sound with two acoustic guitars and a bongo set, successfully defying the typical industry pigeonholing. They wrote short, infectiously catchy tunes about love, suicide, and absurdist rock star lifestyles

World Culture

The Culture of Poland is closely connected with its intricate 1000 year history. Its unique character developed at the crossroads of the Latinate and Byzantine worlds, in continual dialog with the many ethnic groups living in Poland. The people of Poland have always been hospitable to artists from abroad and eager to follow cultural and artistic trends popular in other countries. In the 19th and 20th centuries the Polish focus on cultural advancement often took precedence over political and economic activity. These factors have contributed to the versatile nature of Polish art, with all its complex nuances.
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(no subject) [Feb. 15th, 2008|07:13 pm]
Learn 3 new things every day

cajunsweets
[Current Mood |curiouscurious]

 HEALTH
All about Portions
 - One Serving of Meat (of any kind) or Fish is about the size of a deck of cards OR the size of a woman's palm OR 3 ounces
 - One Serving of Fruits, Veggies, Rice, Pasta is 1/2 cup or the size of a small closed fist
 - One Serving of Cheese is about the size of your thumb or 1 ounce
 - One Serving of Milk, Yogurt, or Fresh Greens is about one cup OR the size of a small hand holding a tennis ball

 The following lists what One Serving would be out of the food groups


HOME REMEDIES
Deodorize Hands that smell from onions or seafood:
 -Rub hands with coffee grinds (used or unused). Add water if its unused. Rub hands for about 1 minute before rinsing off
 - Lemon or Realemon helps get rid of smells.

RECORDS
Most tennis balls ever held in one hand was 18 balls for 10 seconds by Francisco Peinado Toledo of Spain.

The most tennis balls held in the mouth of a dog was 5 by a golden retreiver named Augie.
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