May 6, 2011

Rape and Rapeseed

Rapeseed, sometimes called Rape, is a plant cultivated for its seed to make oils, bio-diesel, and animal food. It is a member of the mustard family, along with turnips, radishes, cabbage, and watercress, among others.

Rapeseed was the third leading source of vegetable oil in the world in 2000. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, after soybean and oil palm. Its saturated fat is 6% vs. palm oil at 79%.

Canola is a trademark for a hybrid variety of rape initially bred in Canada (Canola is an acronym for Canadian Oil, Low Acid). Canadian Rape growers renamed the oil back in the 1970s to get away from the negative connotation of the 'rape' name. (Like how prunes are now called dried plums.)

Rapeseed oil was produced in the 19th century as a source of a lubricant for steam engine and now makes into a bio-diesel. Rapeseed leaves and stems are also edible and some cook it like spinach or bok choy.  Despite of some lingering, but incorrect internet rumors, canola oil is not bad for you.

What's in a Name

Here is something that you don't think about often, unless you do not have one, then too many people seem compelled to mention it. The glabella is the name of the space between your eyebrows.

McDonald's Choices Around the World

The Japanese know how to add menu items at McDonald's. They have the bacon, cheese, and potato pie. Wish we did.

McDonald's also serves spaghetti in the Philippines, hot dogs in Japan, pork burgers in Thailand, seaweed seasonings all over Asia, lobster salad on a bun and Poutine in Canada, ham and cheese on flat bread in France, pizza pockets in Morocco, fried salmon on a bun in Norway, fried beef stew on a bun in Poland, bacon and ketchup on a bun in England, bratwurst in Germany (of course), and beer in many countries, but not, alas, the US. Not sure how many let you supersize the orders.

Top Eleven Uses for Mouthwash

The following presume to use the type of mouthwash with alcohol in it.

Nail fungus problems and athlete's foot are difficult to eradicate. Make up a 50/50 solution of alcohol-based mouthwash and vinegar, and apply to the affected area with a cotton ball two-to-three times per day. It make a week or more for the fungus, but only days to get rid of athlete's foot.
Apply some mouthwash to poison ivy infected areas and it will it relieve the itchiness and inflammation as well as dry up the area and begin the healing process.

Mouthwash is great for cleaning the kids’ hands in a pinch, as long as it is the alcohol-based and sugar-free kind.

When traveling mouthwash can be used as a substitute deodorant in a pinch, due to its bacteria-killing properties.

Of course mouthwash eliminates garlic odor in your mouth, but it can also take get rid of the smell of garlic on your hands after you’ve handled it. Just pour some on your hands, rub them together, and let them air-dry.

Mouthwash was first used as a surgical antiseptic before people figured out its mouth-washing properties. Apply some mouthwash to your wound, dry, and cover with a bandage.

By mixing two tablespoons of mouthwash per gallon of water and filling your flower vase with this mixture, your cut flowers will last longer because it kills the bacteria that accelerates decomposition.

Apply mouthwash on a damp cloth to wash glass surfaces. Dry with a cotton cloth.

In the same way that mouthwash removes bacteria from your mouth, you can remove it from your laundry as well. Add one cup to the regular cycle of a full load of laundry. This is especially handy for those stinky gym socks; mouthwash kills all the bacteria that is sometimes left behind in a regular wash.

Dunk your toothbrush in a cup of mouthwash before brushing to ensure your toothbrush is clean and free of bacteria.

The end - pour a cup of mouthwash into the toilet, let it sit for half an hour and swipe it with the toilet brush.

Is Your Name Popular

Have you ever wondered how popular your name is? Probably not, but there is a web site that will tell you. LINK Just type in your name and Pokemyname will tell you how popular it is, how many others share your name. it also shows how your name looks in Braille, Semaphore, barcode, morse code, and sign language. Fun diversion.

1965 Inventions Plus

The Kennedy half dollar came out that year and contained 60% copper. An uncirculated one is worth about four dollars today. The artificial Aspartame came out in 1965. It came under attack as causing cancer, but the claims were debunked and it is now considered safe. Astroturf hit the ground in 1965 and is still around. Kevlar was invented that year and is still protecting us from the bad guys. Basic, the computer programming language was developed in 1965. The 'Big Bang' theory was developed in 1965 and the Nobel prize in science was awarded its discoverer. Some say the internet was developed in 1965, but it was really conceived, much like its current form in 1968.

On Palm Sunday, April, 1965 fifty one tornadoes hit around the Southern US, causing tremendous damage.Medicare was created by Lyndon Johnson. the Maple Leaf became the official Flag symbol for Canada. The Gateway arch in St. Louis was completed. Warren Buffet takes over Berkshire Hathaway and the stock price was $18 per share.  No, the pencil was invented in Switzerland in 1565, not 1965.

May 4, 2011

Cranberry Jell-O

It is reportedly the only flavor that contains real fruit flavoring.

Unusual Plants and Trees

The website name describes what you will see, '15 Eccentric Endangered Trees, Plants, and Flowers'. Great pics of unusual living things from around the world. Here is the welwitschia mirabilis, which usually has only two leaves, but they curl around into an unusual clump. It can live for a thousand years.

A quick read, but you might get hooked by all the related sites of weird plants, exotic animals, etc. LINK A fun diversion to explore the unusual around us.

Some Illuminating Thoughts

On Jan. 1, 2012, 100-watt incandescent bulbs will start disappearing from store shelves.The front of the new bulb labels will list energy cost and lumens, which can vary widely even for bulbs consuming the same amount of energy or wattage. Lumens already appear on bulb packaging, but we often overlook the fine print.

The back will list the bulb's expected life span, energy consumption and its "light appearance," or color, which is measured on a temperature scale known as Kelvin (K). Lower Kelvin numbers mean the light is more yellow; higher Kelvin numbers mean it's whiter or bluer. The traditional incandescent, which gives off a warm, soft and almost yellowish light, has a temperature of about 2,700 to 3,000K — similar to most halogens. LEDs' temperatures range from 3,300 to 5,000K while CFLs can be quite warm (2,700K), neutral or cold (6,500K).

For kitchens and work spaces, where a brighter and whiter light is desired, look for bulbs marked 3,500 to 4,100K. For a cooler, bluish light akin to daylight, good for reading, look for bulbs with 5,000 to 6,500K.

For CFLs, the back label also notes that the bulbs "contain mercury" which, in high enough doses, can cause tremors, mood swings, headaches and insomnia. (CFLs have, on average, 4 milligrams of mercury, while older thermometers have about 500 milligrams.) No mercury is released unless the bulb breaks. Besides being expensive, I have tried them in my ceiling fans and about one in four burns out within a few months. The new label lists a government website for tips on how to clean up broken pieces and dispose of the bulbs. This is very scary stuff.

Here is a link to a Youtube explaining the new CFL bulbs LINK  This Texas congressman is not happy. If these bulbs are really that good, we would have already bought them and they would not have to be forced on us.