Archive for May, 2015

Disasterous Day!

May 31, 2015

Historically speaking, May 31st has had a couple of pretty horrific natural disaster/weather events . . .

  • May 31, 1935: 7.7 magnitude earthquake kills 50,000 in Pakistan (Quetta).  Here’s a link for more info of the worst earthquakes in history (since 1900).
    • The strongest recorded earthquake: Valdivia, Chile: magnitude 9.5
    • The deadliest earthquake: Shaanxi, China: devastated an area of 520 miles, was felt in 97 countries, and resulted in a death toll of 830,000
  • May 31, 1985: United States-Canadian tornado outbreak: Forty-one tornadoes hit Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, and Ontario, leaving 76 dead and more than 1,000 injured.  Here is a link for more info on the ten worst U.S. tornadoes.

“Mother Nature is a great equalizer. You can’t get away from it.”  Christopher Heyerdahl

Life, Let’s Slow It Down a Bit!

May 30, 2015

Yes, I’m a workaholic, type-A personality.  Yes, I’m over scheduled far more frequently than not. Yes, I often sacrifice sleep to fit one more thing in each day.  Yes, that’s my life.  I would offer that staying busy or constantly being on the go is my coping mechanism for staving off boredom and depression.  Fortunately, I have also discovered that “all work and no play . . . ” will actually result in experiencing the very boredom I wish to escape.  Sometimes extra down time just has to be scheduled and last weekend (Memorial Day) was just such a time.  This reminds me of another proverb about an intervention that will occur if you do NOT schedule this down time . . . “Death is nature’s way of telling you to slow down.”  Hmm, the ultimate relaxation, but a bit extreme.  I should probably work harder at not working so hard.

A Gratuity!

May 29, 2015

When you travel, knowing the local customs or requirements will always hold you in good stead.  It is also wise to try to avoid those countries that are seen as corrupt & baksheesh-kickback motivated countries.


\bak-SHEESH\, noun;

  1. A gratuity, present or tip.
  2. A gratuity, tip, or bribe paid to expedite service.
  3. To give a tip.


May 28, 2015

Here’s the next installment of manners and etiquette (courtesy of the Goops)?

Little scraps of paper,
Little crumbs of food,
Make a room untidy,
Everywhere they’re strewed.

Do you sharpen pencils,
Ever, on the floor
What becomes of orange-peels
And your apple-core?

Can you blame your mother
If she looks severe,
When she says, “It looks to me
As if the Goops were here?”

Source: Goops and How to Be Them: a Manual of Manners for Polite Infants Inculcating Many Juvenile Virtues Both by Precept and Example by Gelett Burgess.

Polly Want a Cracker?!

May 27, 2015

Here are the directions for making an origami parrot . . . courtesy of Manuel Sigro. Happy folding!

Male Idiot Theory!

May 26, 2015

Or, “How Dumb Turns Deadly.”  As has been proven time and again, the Darwin Awards show that many “genius” ideas are truly idiotic . . . and tend to end very badly.  For those who are unfamiliar with these awards, they “salute the improvement of the human genome by honoring those who accidentally remove themselves from it . . .”

Well, someone has finally analyzed two decades’ worth of winners and have come up with the following significant fact:

  • 89% were perpetrated by males (282 out of 319)

They further separated the events into categories (death toll in parentheses)

  • Morbid miscalculations (60 idiots)
  • Vehicular violence (56 morons)
  • Explosions and fire (45 numbskulls)
  • Self-inflicted wounds (26 dummies)
  • Fatal falls (26 dolts)
  • Outdoor endings (25 boneheads)
  • Accidental electrocutions (23 dimwits)
  • Animal attacks (21 fools)

Memorial Day, 2015!

May 25, 2015

Memorial Day, a day to commemorate those who have died serving our country. Whatever you are doing today, please take time to participate in the National Moment of Remembrance at 3 PM local time to observe a moment of silence.

Spicy Sausage Pasta

May 24, 2015

Here’s a recipe that I found that sounds delicious, and it even seems easy to prepare.

Spicy Sausage Pasta

1 Tablespoon of olive oil
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced (kielbasa/smoked Polish sausage)
1-1/2 cups diced onion (2 medium)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of chicken broth
1 can (10 ounce) mild Ro-Tel diced tomatoes with green chiles (I’d use hot/spicy)
1/2 cup of heavy cream
8 ounces uncookd penne pasta
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
1 cup of shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/3 cup thinly slice green onions

In an oven-safe skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat until very hot.  Add the sausage and onions and cook until lightly browned, about four (4) minutes, stirring regularly.  Add the garlic and cook about thirty (30) seconds.  Add the broth, Ro-Tel, cream, pasta, salt, and pepper.  Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat to medium-low.  Simmer until the pasta is tender and most liquid is absorbed, about fifteen (15) minutes.  Remove from the heat and stir in half of the cheese.  Top with the remaining cheese and sprinkle with the green onions.  Place under the broiler for a few minutes until the cheese is melted, browned, and bubbly.


Trivia in the Kitchen, Number Forty!

May 23, 2015

Did you know that foods and new dishes are often named for either their creators or for popular stars of the day?

  • Peach Melba was invented by a French chef to honor Australian soprano Dame Nellie Melba in 1892.
  • Chicken Tetrazzinin is said to have been named after the San Francisco opera singer Luisa Tetrazzini (1910).
  • Fettucinne Alfredo was created for his wife by Alfredo di Lelio, an early-20th-century Italian chef.
  • Earl Grey tea named after Charles Grey, 2nd Earl Grey, Viscount Howick, and British Prime Minister 1830–1834.
  • Marechal Foch, a hybrid grape variety, named after the French Field Marshal Ferdinand Foch.

Is there anyone that you would like to invent a special dish for?  What would it be?

Here’s a link to a more extensive list of these types of foods (and the origins of their names).

Let Us Ponder . . . Laws!

May 22, 2015

Hmm, it would appear that somethings never change.  Below is a quotation that I ran across this week from Solon (Athenian statesman, lawmaker, and poet, circa 630-555 B.C.) regarding laws.

“Laws are like spider’s webs: if some poor weak creature come up against them, it is caught; but a bigger one can  break through and get away.”