Feb 7, 2012

Dental Robot

Robots have come a long way in the past few years and it seems like their usefulness is growing every month. Here is a LINK which shows video of a new lifelike dental robot, used to teach dental students.

Technology is useful in so many ways. Better to let those students make their first mistakes on a robot, before getting into real mouths.

World's Biggest Happy Meal

Where else but in Texas could you find the world's biggest anything. Dallas is home to this one.

The McDonald's PlayPlace is in the box, and the building is adorned with gigantic hamburgers, French fries, Cokes, and a Ronald McDonald. The exterior is the only Happy Meal-shaped McDonald’s in the world. The interior has Austrian crystal chandeliers, Ralph Lauren wallpaper, granite floors, and mahogany booths. It is at 13105 Montfort Drive, Dallas.

Hot Pepper Pain Removal

Capsaicin, the thing that makes peppers hot, is fat soluble and thus water does not counter the burning sensation. If it is cold water it will temporarily overpower the capsaicin’s effect on the nerve receptors and tell your brain you are feeling a cold sensation, but once the cold water is swallowed the heat will come back.

Dairy products work best to counteract capsaicin because they contain a protein called casein which binds to the capsaicin, hindering its ability to bind to your nerve receptors.

Drinking milk before or while eating the peppers will help reduce irritation in your intestines for the same reason it helps in your mouth. It could save you from that awful day after burn.

Feb 3, 2012

Happy Friday

We often discover what will do, by finding out what will not do.

What absolutely does it for me is having a Happy Friday!

Results of Groundhog Day 2012

It is official.  Pennsylvania's Punxsutawney Phil emerged from his lair to see his shadow yesterday. Thus we can expect six more weeks of winter.

The groundhog is also called a "woodchuck" and its scientific name is Marmota monax. Marmots are ground squirrels, living in burrows rather than trees. The marmots are related to tree squirrels, and all these animals are classed as rodents. A groundhog is one of the largest varieties of marmot and can weigh over 30 pounds just before going into hibernation.

Births usually occur during May. After four weeks, their eyes open and they begin to explore the outdoors. By August, they establish new burrows.

By the middle of October most groundhogs are hibernating and normally hibernate until about March. They can live up to about six years in the wild. Of course Punxsutawney Phil has been around since 1887.

W.C. Fields

February 3, 1880, William Claude Dukenfield was born. He became one of the most celebrated comics and actors in the US, starting his career as a vaudeville juggler, then spending several decades on the musical stage before turning to films.

W.C. Fields, his stage name, made his first short, Pool Sharks, in 1915. After silent movies, he performed in many comedy classics like, My Little Chickadee with Mae West (1940), The Bank Dick (1940) and Never Give a Sucker an Even Break (1941).

W.C.’s famous lines became subject matter for nightclub impersonators and comedians. One of the most-repeated quotes was originally directed at the child-actor, Baby LeRoy, Fields’ on-screen nemesis: “Go away, kid, you bother me.” The one-liner that demonstrated Fields’ jaundiced humor. His most-quoted, was fired at a party hostess who offered him a glass of water. “Never touch the stuff; fish **** in it,” was his response. Other W.C. Fields witticisms: “Doctors say don’t worry about your heart, it will last as long as you live.”, “Californians talk so much about their climate, it makes their weather vane.” “I am very humble and proud of it.”, “It was a woman who drove me to drink and I never even thanked her.”

He requested that his headstone read, “All things considered, I’d rather be in Philadelphia.” Ah, Yes!

German Sex Meters

The German city of Bonn is calling its policy of levying a surcharge on streetwalking prostitutes via curb-side meters a success that would continue.

The municipal government said a "sex tax" covering levies on sauna clubs, "erotic centers" and automated pay stations similar to parking meters that were rolled out in August 2011 had brought in around $326,000 last year.

The former West German capital became the first city in Germany to introduce the meters for sex workers as a means of extending a general tax on prostitution beyond brothels to the streets of Bonn.

The meters were installed in an industrial area near the center of town used by prostitutes to solicit clients, with each sex worker paying €6 per night worked, regardless of how many customers they have. Those repeatedly caught without a ticket can be fined.

More Salt Less Bacon

I think not. Some people are beginning to say that salt is the new bacon. However, bacon is not so hoidy toity. Bacon lovers love bacon and do not need fancy names and additional flavors to make it better. The price of bacon has gone up over twenty percent in the past three years, but that is nothing compared to the price of specialty salts.

New salt types include Himalayan or alder-smoked and many more. Salt is in chocolate, on caramels, and even chocolate covered bacon.

SaltWorks sells Black Hawaiian sea salt, Bolivian Rose salt, Merlot-infused crystals, and Yakima apple wood smoked sea salt. It even has salt and pepper tastings. Some specialty salts can cost $8 per ounce, or $128 per pound. Bacon salt is much cheaper.

How Long is a Smoot

The smoot is a unit of length, defined as the height of Oliver R. Smoot, who became the president of the ISO. The unit is used to measure the length of the Harvard Bridge. In 1958 when Smoot was a Lambda Chi Alpha pledge at MIT (class of 1962), the bridge was measured to be 364.4 smoots, plus or minus one ear, using Smoot's body as a ruler. Oliver was 5 feet, 7 inches at that time. Google Earth and Google Calculator include the smoot as a unit of measurement. You have just been smitten by a smoot fact.