Archive for December, 2019

New Year’s Eve, 2019!

December 31, 2019

The dropping of the ball in Times Square (New York City) on New Year’s Eve has been going on for quite some time.  Do you know the year that this tradition first started?  Would you believe 1907?

Some other famous “firsts” that occurred on December 31st throughout history include:

  • the first price regulation law enacted by a colony (Rhode Island, 1776)
  • the first book with color plates (The City of Philadelphia in the State of Pennsylvania North America as it Appeared  in the Year 1800 , Consisting of Twenty-Eight Plates Drawn and Engraved by W. Birch and Son,  1800)
  • the first parade held by a mystic society (Cowbellian Rakian Society, Mobile, AL, 1830)
  • the first dental surgeons to be licensed by a state (Alabama, 1841)
  • the first transatlantic radio broadcast of a voice (1923)
  • the first Socialist Workers Party organizational meeting (Chicago, IL, 1937)
  • the first senator to win a seat that had been occupied by his father and his mother (Russell Long, Louisiana, 1948)
  • the first battery to convert radioactive energy into electrical energy (1951)
  • the first year in which the public debt of the U.S. exceeded $1 trillion (1981)
  • the first ice hotel (Aurora Ice Hotel, Chena Hot Springs, AK, 2003)

Source: Famous First Facts, by Joseph Nathan Kane, Steven Anzovin, and Janet Podell.

College Basketball 2020, Week Eight!

December 30, 2019

The Spartans of Michigan State lone game this week was against the Broncos of Western Michigan which the Spartans won easily.  The Big Ten conference continues to have six (6) teams in the AP top-25: Ohio State [#2], Michigan [#11], Maryland [#13], Michigan State [#14], Penn State [#20], and Iowa [#25].   There continue to be only two undefeated teams (Auburn and San Diego State) as we head into the new year and the beginning of conference play.  All in all, a quiet week over the holiday, but a few surprises nonetheless.

Next up for the Spartans: at home to face the Illini of Illinois (Thursday) as Big Ten play recommences and then at home to host the Wolverines of Michigan (Sunday).  Go Green!

The upsets this week included:
Ohio State (#2) losing to West Virginia (#22).
Louisville (#3) losing to Kentucky (#19) in overtime.
Washington (#21) losing to unranked Houston by four (4) points.

The close calls this week (won by six points or less [two scores] or in overtime) included:

Top-25 match-ups won by the higher-ranked team included:

Commonly Misspelled and Confused – Letter P!

December 29, 2019

Here is a list of some of the more commonly misspelled/misused words (courtesy of the Internet Accuracy Project) beginning with the letter “P.”  Enjoy!

Commonly misspelled words

P – panicky, parallel, parliament, particularly, pastime, pavilion, peaceable, peculiar, penetrate, peninsula, perceive, performance, permanent, permissible, permitted, perseverance, persistence, pharaoh, physical, physician, picnicking, piece, pigeon, pilgrimage, pistachio, pitiful, plagiarize, planning, pleasant, poinsettia, portray, possess, possessive, potato, potatoes, practically, prairie, precede, preference, preferred, prejudice, preparation, prescription, presumptuous, prevalent, primitive, privilege, probably, procedure, proceed, professor, prominent, pronounce, pronunciation, propaganda, propagate, psychology, publicly, pursue.

Commonly Confused Words

PAIN – a feeling of being hurt; suffering
He was in great pain following the accident.

PANE – a single sheet of glass in a division of a window
The pane of glass no longer leaked after it was caulked.

PASSED – to go by; to have moved
He was killed as he passed the truck on a blind curve.

PAST – belonging to a earlier time; long-ago
In the past he had been a respectable attorney, but was disbarred after he tried to bribe a judge.

PEAK – mountaintop; summit 
It was at the peak of his political career that he accepted the bride from Tony Soprano.

PEEK – glance; sneak a quick look 
The video clearly showed the man peeking in his neighbor’s window.

PIQUE – (Noun) resentment at being slighted; (Verb) to arouse curiosity
His curiosity was piqued when he saw what appeared to be a photo of aliens with their landing craft.

PRECEDE – to come before 
The King always precedes his entourage.

PROCEED – to go forward; carry on 
He would proceed with the task, though he knew it was a lost cause.

PRINCIPAL – a person who has authority; primary; most important
The popular high school principal, later became the district superintendent.

PRINCIPLE – a fundamental truth; the original source; integrity
He was a man of principle.

Source: Internet Accuracy Project’s commonly misspelled, confused and misused words is a helpful collection of some of the most commonly misspelled, confused and misused words.

Marriage Advice, Number Seventeen!

December 28, 2019

Here is the seventeenth installment of advice on How to be Happy Though Married.  Enjoy!

The Pains of Marriage
“The most happy marriage I can imagine or picture to myself would be the union of a deaf man to a blind woman.”  (Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 1772-1834)

Hints for Husbands
“Do you show your devotion to a woman by holding her hand or putting your arm around her when her friends are present?  Please don’t.  Even a girl who is affectionate in private dislikes public mauling.”  (Esquire’s Handbook for Hosts, 1954)

Hints for Wives
“Before leaving  your chamber or home, be mindful that the collar of your shift or of your robe does not slip out one over the other, as happens with drunken, foolish, or ignorant women who do not care about their own honour or the good repute of their estate or of their husband.”  (Le Ménagier de Paris, 1393)

Source: How to Be Happy Though Married: Matrimonial Strife Through the Ages, compiled by Emily Brand.

Fun Fact Friday, Number 159!

December 27, 2019

The category for today’s trivial imponderable is “measurements.”  Do you know . . . how much water a ten-gallon hat would hold?

Obviously NOT ten gallons.  In all actuality, a ten-gallon hat only holds roughly three-quarters of a gallon.

Source: Sorry, Wrong Answer: Trivia Questions That Even Know-It-Alls Get Wrong, by Dr. Rod L. Evans.

Artist Documentary: Ken Brown Pioneer!

December 26, 2019

Here is the next installment of the artist documentaries that were produced by students from the Jenks High School Documentary Film Class under the tutelage of their instructor, Clifton Raphael, in partnership with artists from both the Tulsa Artists Guild and Tulsa’s Alpha Rho Tau (a civic art association).  This posts features the artist Ken Brown Pioneer.  Enjoy!


Merry Christmas 2019!

December 25, 2019

Merry Christmas!  Let’s take a moment to rejoice  and to enjoy this beautiful instrumental composition by the Piano Guys (Jon Schmidt)  titled “Christmas Morning.”



Christmas Eve!

December 24, 2019

Christmas EveOn this, the day before Christmas, my post is featuring a painting that I acquired last spring that is perfectly suited to today.  The title of this work: “Christmas Eve.”   I actually fell in love with this one back in 2018 and was delighted to discover that it was still available in 2019.  The painter: Micheal Jones, the medium: oil.  It is wonderfully framed in weathered wood to provide for an even more rustic charm to the piece.

College Basketball 2020, Week Seven!

December 23, 2019

The Spartans of Michigan State became the first team to win a road game in Big Ten play (@Northwestern)!  Granted it is early in the season, but road wins are road wins, and as shown this first week, hard to come by.  Michigan State followed this up with a second win for the week on Saturday against the Eagles of Eastern Michigan.     The Big Ten conference has five (5) teams in the AP top-25: Ohio State [#5], Maryland [#7], Michigan [#14], Michigan State [#15],  and Penn State [#23].  There are only two teams in the AP top-25 that remain undefeated (Auburn [#12]  and San Diego State [#20]).

Next up for the Spartans: at home to take on the Broncos of Western Michigan.  Go Green!

The upsets this week included:
Kansas (#1) losing by one (1) point to Villanova (#18).
Kentucky (#6) losing to unranked Utah by three (3) points and losing to #5 Ohio State).
Maryland (#7) losing to unranked Seton Hall by four (4) points.
Virginia (#9) losing to unranked South Carolina.
Dayton (#13) losing to unranked Colorado by two (2) points in overtime.
Arizona (#16) losing to unranked St. John’s by three (3) points.
Tennessee (#21) losing to unranked Cincinnati.

The close calls this week (won by six points or less [two scores] or in overtime) included:
Ohio State (#5) defeating Kentucky (#6) by six (6) points.
Oregon (#8) defeating unranked Texas Southern by six (6) points.
Auburn (#12) defeating unranked North Carolina State by six (6) points.
Michigan State (#15) defeating unranked Northwestern by five (5) points.
Florida State (#19) defeating unranked South Florida by six (6) points.
Texas Tech (#24) defeating unranked Southern Mississippi by six (6) points.

Top-25 match-ups won by the higher-ranked team included:
Ohio State (#5) defeating Kentucky (#6) by six (6) points.

Kitchen Intel, Number Ten!

December 22, 2019

Rack it up to innovation!  Here are some other uses for those “racks” you have around the kitchen:

  • the oven rack can double as a cooling rack.
  • the oven rack can double as a pasta drying rack.
  • a cooling rack can double as a drainer.
  • you can cool blanched vegetables on a wire rack.
  • a roasting rack can double as a cookbook holder.

Source: How to Break an Egg, by the editors, contributors, and readers of Fine Cooking magazine, p. 30-31, Martha Davis, Rex Browning, Sheri L. Castle, Katy McCabe, and Ken Fruehstorfer.