Archive for September, 2010

Gastronomical Delights!

September 30, 2010

Today marks the start of the Tulsa State Fair . . . which will run until October 10th.   Why do most people attend a Fair?  I would hazard to guess: the food, of course, in all of its deep-fat fried glory!   Every year there seems to be yet another culinary creation that one would have never guessed or seen coming . . .

Here’s a list of the top-ten “Most Unusual State Fair Foods” (and the State from which they hailed).
Chicken Fried Bacon (Texas)
Fried Avocado Bites (California)
Spaghetti and Meatball on a Stick (Minnesota)
Fried Frog Legs (California)
Hot Beef Sundae (Iowa)
Pizza Cones (Indiana)
Krispy Kreme Chicken Sandwich (California)
Deep Fried Twinkies (Indiana)
Fried Coca Cola (Texas)
Key Lime Pie on a Stick (Minnesota)

What will be the latest and greatest deep-fat-fried creation? How about some . . .
Fried Beer (Texas)!

Enjoy, but try not to eat too much!

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Have You Had Your Brain Hacked Lately?

September 29, 2010

Mine gets hacked everyday (and yours probably does too, you just don’t realize it).  How does this happen?  Simply by looking at artwork!  According to an article in New Scientist magazine, there are six techniques that artists use to “play with the mind and the senses to create sublime atmospheres and odd impressions.”

1.  Twisting mirrors, unreal shadows.
2.  Virtual reality, the old way.
3.  Making an emotional impresson.
4.  Two pictures for the price of one.
5.  Getting your wires crossed.
6.  Pictures that turn inside out.

Check out the full article here.

Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

September 28, 2010

According to a 2008 survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 11.1% of U.S. adults reported that they had gotten insufficient sleep or rest for all of the preceding 30 days!   Okay, that cinches it, I’m going back to bed!

Sufficient sleep is not a luxury—it is a necessity—and should be thought of as a “vital sign” of good health. 

29% of U.S. adults report getting less than 7 hours of sleep per night.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults need 7–9 hours of sleep each night.  Effective behavioral strategies that may help you in the sleep department include keeping a regular sleep schedule; avoiding stimulating activities within 2 hours of bedtime; avoiding caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol in the evening; sleeping in a dark, quiet, well-ventilated space; and avoiding going to bed hungry.

Some Fun For Monday!

September 27, 2010

This was forwarded to me a couple of weeks ago by a co-worker. 

A “paraprosdokian” is a figure of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase is surprising or unexpected in a way that causes the reader or listener to reframe or reinterpret the first part.   It is frequently used for humorous or dramatic effect, sometimes producing an anticlimax.   For this reason, it is extremely popular among comedians and satirists.  Some paraprosdokians not only change the meaning of an early phrase, but also play on the double meaning of a particular word, creating a syllepsis.  And, while I was unable to find this word in the dictionary, there was an entry in an encyclopedia.  Happy Monday, enjoy!

Here are some examples . . .
I asked God for a bike, but I know God doesn’t work that way. So I stole a bike and asked for forgiveness.

Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

I want to die peacefully in my sleep, like my grandfather. Not screaming and yelling like the passengers in his car.

Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.

The last thing I want to do is hurt you. But it’s still on the list.

Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

If I agreed with you we’d both be wrong. 

We never really grow up, we only learn how to act in public.

War does not determine who is right – only who is left.

Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit; Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.

The early bird might get the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.

Evening news is where they begin with ‘Good evening’, and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.

To steal ideas from one person is plagiarism. To steal from many is research.

A bus station is where a bus stops. A train station is where a train stops. On my desk, I have a work station.

How is it one careless match can start a forest fire, but it takes a whole box to start a campfire?

Some people are like Slinkies … not really good for anything, but you can’t help smiling when you see one tumble down the stairs.

Dolphins are so smart that within a few weeks of captivity, they can train people to stand on the very edge of the pool and throw them fish.

I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted pay checks.

A bank is a place that will lend you money, if you can prove that you don’t need it.

Whenever I fill out an application, in the part that says “If an emergency, notify:” I put “DOCTOR”.

I didn’t say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.

I saw a woman wearing a sweat shirt with “Guess” on it…so I said “Implants?”

Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?

Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut, and still think they are sexy.

Why do Americans choose from just two people to run for president and 50 for Miss America ?

Behind every successful man is his woman. Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.

A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

You do not need a parachute to skydive. You only need a parachute to skydive twice.

The voices in my head may not be real, but they have some good ideas!

Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.

A diplomat is someone who can tell you to go to hell in such a way that you will look forward to the trip.

Hospitality: making your guests feel like they’re at home, even if you wish they were.

Money can’t buy happiness, but it sure makes misery easier to live with.

I discovered I scream the same way whether I’m about to be devoured by a great white shark or if a piece of seaweed touches my foot.

Some cause happiness wherever they go. Others whenever they go.

There’s a fine line between cuddling and holding someone down so they can’t get away.

I used to be indecisive. Now I’m not sure.

I always take life with a grain of salt, plus a slice of lemon, and a shot of tequila.

When tempted to fight fire with fire, remember that the Fire Department usually uses water.

You’re never too old to learn something stupid.

To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target.

Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be.

Some people hear voices. Some see invisible people. Others have no imagination whatsoever.

A bus is a vehicle that runs twice as fast when you are after it as when you are in it.

If you are supposed to learn from your mistakes, why do some people have more than one child?

Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

Wonderful!

September 26, 2010

I have often wondered how some words come into existence.   When I ran across this word, it kind of made sense to me.  Literary license, of course!  I would have thought that the words “joyful” or “fabulous” are perfectly fine words to describe some experiences — I never would have thought to come up with a new word in an attempt to combine the two.  But this is exactly what Lewis Carroll did in his book Through the Looking Glass (in 1872).   Have a frabjous day!

frabjous

\FRAB-juhs\; adjective, informal

1.  Wonderful, elegant, superb, or delicious.
2.  Fabulous and joyful, delightful.

Celebrate Our Freedom to Read!

September 25, 2010

Today marks the beginning of “Banned Books Week,” a national celebration of our freedom to read (and the fight against censorship).  Books are constantly being challenged (more than 1,000 books have been challenged since 1982).  

People challenge books for all sorts of reasons . . . sexual content, violence, profanity, slang, racial themes, religion, positive portrayal of homosexuality, etc.  Not even the “classics” of American literature are exempt from challenge (“Catcher in the Rye” and “To Kill a Mockingbird” to name a couple).

Let’s go forth and read!

Art is Happening Here!

September 25, 2010

Grand Rapids, Michigan, that is.  Opening last Wednesday and running through October 10th is the Second Annual ArtPrize Competition.  This lucrative competition (judged by us common folk, not juried by other artists) offers an “explosion of contemporary art” and has over $450,000 available in prize money.  This year there are 1,713 artists showing their works in 192 venues throughout the downtown area.  An art lover’s paradise!    One of these years, I’m going to have to be in Michigan for what sounds like a wonderful art event.  It would coincide nicely with a visit to the old homestead up in Leelanau County to help out during the harvest (Boskydel Vineyards).

Happy Friday!

September 24, 2010

Street of Prague, VIII

And what better way to celebrate a Friday than by posting a picture of the latest addition to my art collection!  This signed serigraph (in color on archival paper) is another by Anatole Krasnyansky entitled “Street of Prague, VIII,” and was produced in 2005.  This particular piece represent the artist’s earlier style (painting city scenes with pastels and muted colors) versus his current abstract style (painting figures using more bright and vivid colors).  A treasure regardless of the style!

Friends!

September 23, 2010

How often do we take the time to truly appreciate our friends?  I would have to say not nearly often enough.  As a matter of fact, we probably tend to take them for granted and count on them to always be around when we need them.  Today’s post is dedicated to all the friends in our lives (not the mere acquaintances, but the true friends) . . . thank you.

“In poverty and other misfortunes of life, true friends are a sure refuge.  The young they keep  out of mischief; to the old they are a comfort and aid in their weakness, and those in the prime of life they incite to noble deeds.”  — Aristotle

Here too are some definitions of “friend” (and a couple for ‘friendship”) from The Cynic’s Dictionary (authored by Aubrey Dillon-Malone).

“Someone who sticks by you even when he gets to know you real well.”  (E.C. McKenzie)

“People who tell you all the nice things you already knew about yourself.”  (Anonymuos)

“God’s apology for relations.”  (Hugh Kingsmill)

“Thermometers by which we judge the temperature of our fortunes.”  (Countess of Blessington)

“A holy passion, so sweet and steady and loyal and enduring in its nature that it will last through a whole lifetime — if either party isn’t asked to lend money.”  (Mark Twain)

“Love without his wings.”  (Lord Byron)

Need a Vacation?

September 22, 2010

Then have a laugh . . . according to Milton Berle, “Laughter is an instant vacation.”  It doesn’t cost you a thing and you don’t have to pack or travel anywhere.   If this is true, I have a vacation multiple times each day (and I’m not charged a vacation day either).

To go along with the “laughter is the best medicine” theme, here is a list of health benefits that have been attributed to laughter:

  • Lower blood pressure.
  • Increase vascular blood flow and oxygenation of the blood.
  • Give a workout to the diaphragm and abdominal, respiratory, facial, leg, and back muscles.
  • Reduce certain stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline.
  • Increase the response of tumor- and disease-killing cells such as Gamma-interferon and T-cells.
  • Defend against respiratory infections–even reducing the frequency of colds–by immunoglobulon in saliva.
  • Increase memory and learning; in a study at Johns Hopkins University Medical School, humor during instruction led to increased test scores.
  • Improve alertness, creativity, and memory.

Read more about these benefits here

Let’s all take more vacations during the day!