Sep 19, 2014

Why not hop over to one of my other sites at shubsbooks to check some of my books. Thanks.

Happy Friday

Smile at a mirror and it smiles back. Smile at the world and it smiles back.

Smile at everyone today and share a Happy Friday!

Talk Like a Pirate Day

Today is September 19, International Talk Like a Pirate Day 2014

It is a parodic holiday created in 1995 by John Baur (Ol' Chumbucket) and Mark Summers (Cap'n Slappy) of Albany, Oregon, US, who proclaimed September 19 each year as the day when everyone in the world should talk like a pirate.

Pirate Myths Debunked - The rumor that pirates commonly made people walk the plank is not true. Only five documented instances were recorded. Peg legs were not common, because amputated legs usually meant a quick death. Buried treasure was usually found very quickly and no one needed a map. There have only been three well documented instances throughout pirating history where a pirate admitted to burying treasure. The earliest use of “shiver me timbers” came from Captain Frederick Marryat’s 1835 book Jacob Faithful, about hundred years after the age of piracy.

For the intellectuals in the crowd

What's in a Name, Lego

Danish carpenter Ole Kirk Christiansen, the founder of Lego, asked his staff to come up with a name for his growing toy company. The two names that ended up being finalists were 'Legio' and 'Lego'. The first was a reference to a legion as in a Legion of toys. The second was made from a contraction of 'leg godt', which is a Danish phrase meaning 'play well'. Lego is also a Latin word meaning 'to gather or collect'.

History of Kevlar

Did you know Kevlar was invented by a woman? Stephanie Kwolek took a temporary position for DuPont during 1946. Her goal was to save enough money to pay for medical school. By 1964 Stephanie was still working there and doing research on how to change polymers into higher strength synthetic fibers. She was working with polymers that possessed rod-like molecules that were all lining up in a single direction.

In contrast to the molecules that had been forming in bunches, Stephanie believed that uniform lines would render the resulting material more powerful, although such polymers had been quite challenging to break down into a testable solution. She finally developed the correct solution that had rod-like molecules and at the same time looked dissimilar to every other molecular solution she had yet made.

The next step was to put it through a spinneret, a device that could generate the fibers. The operator for the spinneret initially refused to allow Kwolek to operate the machine, because her new solution was so different than any other before it, and he believed it would ruin the machine.

Kwolek refused to give up and made a fiber, which was as tough as steel. The material was then named, Kevlar and since that time it has been utilized for radial tires, brake pads, drums, skis, helmets, camping gear as well as suspension bridge cables. The most widely known use for Kevlar is bulletproof vests. Kevlar was a brand name, but has become generic term. In July 1995, Kwolek was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Perseverance counts.

Smithsonian Tour

 Take an interactive tour of the Smithsonian. Caution, you could spend hours. LINK

Bathroom Time Trivia

Normally I do not do this type of trivia, but the numbers staggered me, and not in a good way. This first fact was not a surprise, but the rest were rather surprising.

Women spend more than twice as long in the bathroom than men. Thirty seven percent of women and fifteen percent of men spend more than one hour in the bathroom per day.

86% said the toilet is the place where they did most of their reading.

75% of Americans have used their mobile phone in the bathroom. 67% of them read text, 63% answer a call, and 29% do social networking (Yuck).

63% of people read books, magazines and newspapers in the bathroom. Magazines are the favored literature (many of my books are considered good bathroom reading). Men's top two reading are erotic magazines and sports. Women's top two are romance novels and interior design magazines.

33% of people read mail and email in the bathroom.

3% of Americans have TVs in their bathroom.

Annual Rainfall

While checking a city and looking at annual rainfall can be interesting, it may not be informative. For instance, Houston, Texas gets 49 inches of rain annually, which is more rain than Seattle, which gets only 38 inches of annual rainfall. The key difference is Seattle has a relatively high amount of days per year with relatively light rain, 158 vs. Houston with 104 rainy days. Seattle also has 226 cloudy days per year.

Wordology, Briffits and Dustups

Briffits are the clouds left behind when comic-strip characters speed off. They are most often found in the comic strips with hites, which are the horizontal lines streaking between a cartoon character and the briffit to represent speed.

Dustups are the clouds that obscure comic-strip fights.

Things that look like clouds, but are not, include various fumetti, such as word balloons and thought balloons (cumulus fumetti).

Incidentally, although storytelling with pictures and words had been around for hundreds of years and, until recently it was generally believed that the first comic was the Yellow Kid in 1896. However, Rodolphe Töpffer is considered the father of the modern comic strips. His illustrated stories of Histoire de M. Vieux Bois (1827), was first published in the USA in 1842 as The Adventures of Obadiah Oldbuck.

Handy Online Manuals

Do you have appliances, computer equipment, lawnmower, audio equipment, TV, GPS, tools, or any number of other items with no owner's manual? This site has the manual. It also has an option for you to upload your manual so it can help others. Handy info to know. LINK

Call Back App

Here is an application that could save your evening or possibly your life. It is based on text messages, works with any cell phone, not just smartphones and it does not rely on an Internet connection. The service is called Kitestring.

A person sends Kitestring a text with time period like '30m'. In 30 minutes, Kitestring will send back a check-up text and you have five minutes to respond with an 'OK'. If you do not reply on time, Kitestring sends an alert to your designated emergency contact. It might be handy to set before blind dates, traveling alone, or for medical situations.

The basic service is free with eight uses per month with one emergency contact. A paid version offers unlimited uses and contacts as well as with a recurring check-in mode and customized response period.

The recurring check-in might be useful for people with medical conditions and/or who live alone. For instance, you can have it check in on you once or twice a day. A pleasant way to be reminded to let someone know you are OK, without the need for a call. Using this service can mean no call is good news.

Free Friday Thought