Sunday, March 30, 2008

Christmas Trivia

Candy Canes are modeled after a shepard's crook.
The Grinch from Dr. Seuss' book "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" had a dog named Max.
The Star of Bethlehem led the Wise Men to baby Jesus.
Scrooge's dead partner from "A Christmas Carol" was named Jacob Marley.
It was an old silk hat that brought Frosty to life.
Charles Dickens penned "A Christmas Carol".
The poem "The Night Before Christmas" was originally called "A Visit from Saint Nicholas"
Electric Christmas lights were first used in 1895.
At Christmas, it is customary to exchange kisses under a sprig of mistletoe.
Poinsettias originally came from Mexico.
The 12 days of Christmas were December 26 to January 6.
Every snowflake has exactly six sides.

Random Facts Sunday

The World's first animated car ad was created by Dr. Seuss for the Ford Motor Company. Prune Juice is the sixth most popular juice in the United States. Every time you take a step you use 200 muscles. Tsunamis can travel as fast or faster than jet planes. More Americans die in January than in any other month. A bee has 5,000 nostrils. Bees can smell apples from up to 2 miles away. Say this 3 times fast: Geschwindigkeitsbegrenzung is German for "speed limit". You can't hear the sound of a butterfly's wings because they flap too slowly. The World's five smallest countries could easily fit inside Walt Disney World. Flamingoes get their pink colour from the shrimp and algae they eat. Armadillos can get leprosy. The average single man is one inch shorter than the average married man. A gallon of seawater yeilds more than a quarter pound of salt. Goats were domesticated around 7000 B.C.
Celery was first cultivated in 7th century B.C. The city of London was founded in 43 B.C. by the Romans. Octopus blood is pale blue. Printing Pioneer Johannes Gutenberg was actually a goldsmith. Charles Lindbergh carried a Felix the Cat doll with him on his famous flight. The phrase "the sky's the limit" comes from Cervante's Don Quixote. The thickest tree on Earth a Cypress in Mexico called El Tule has a girth of 138 feet.

Philadelphia Classic Cheesecake

Prep Time:20 min
Total Time:5 hr 15 min
Makes:16 servings


1-1/2 cups HONEY MAID Graham Cracker Crumbs
3 Tbsp. sugar 1/3 cup butter or margarine, melted
4 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 eggs

PREHEAT oven to 325°F if using a silver 9-inch springform pan (or to 300°F if using a dark nonstick springform pan). Mix crumbs, 3 Tbsp. sugar and butter; press firmly onto bottom of pan.

BEAT cream cheese, 1 cup sugar and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Add eggs, 1 at a time, mixing on low speed after each addition just until blended. Pour over crust.

BAKE 55 minutes or until center is almost set. Loosen cake from side of pan; cool before removing side of pan. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight. Store leftover cheesecake in refrigerator.

Alley Tree

I was in Toronto for a while last Christmas and I saw this tree and for some reason I had to get a picture.

Baba O' Riley Lyrics

Out here in the fields
I fight for my meals
I get my back into my living.
I don't need to fight
To prove I'm right
I don't need to be forgiven.

Don't cry
Don't raise your eye
It's only teenage wasteland

Sally, take my hand
We'll travel south cross land
Put out the fire
And don't look past my shoulder.
The exodus is here
The happy ones are near
Let's get together
Before we get much older.

Teenage wasteland
It's only teenage wasteland.
Teenage wasteland
Oh, yeah
Teenage wasteland
They're all wasted!

The unofficial national sugary snack

There are more doughnut shops per capita in Canada than anywhere else on the planet. Canadians eat more doughnuts than any other country's citizens. Although the doughnut is often seen as an American icon, it has become Canada's unofficial national snack. The popularity of the deep fried treats has to do with Canada's love affair with coffee, reports CBC's Beth Harrington. Coffee and doughnuts go hand in hand. And since coffee is Canada's number one beverage, its partner in crime, the humble doughnut, ranks up there in popularity.

Special Thanks to CBC

How To Shatter a (Useless) American Penny


Step 1:
Select a penny made in 1983 or later. These pennies are actually copper-coated zinc. (Back in 1982, making one penny out of copper became more expensive than the one cent it was worth.)

Step 2:
Place the penny in a bowl--ideally, a bowl that you won't mind losing.

Step 3:
Add enough liquid nitrogen to the bowl to cover the penny. If you are low on liquid nitrogen, gently swirl it around the penny. Don't waste or spill the liquid nitrogen: this ultra-cold liquid boils at −321 °F and will disappear rapidly in room temperature.

Step 4:
Remove the penny from the bowl with either a pair of pliers or tweezers or with a heavily-insulated glove immediately after the liquid nitro has fully dissolved. If you haven't already, don a pair of protective goggles.

Step 5:
Place the penny on a flat surface. Strike the penny with something sharp, like the claw of a hammer. If the penny has sufficiently frozen, it will shatter into several pieces, most likely in many, many directions.

Thermite Experiments

Sonnet 47 by William Shakespeare

Betwixt mine eye and heart a league is took,
And each doth good turns now unto the other:
When that mine eye is famish'd for a look,
Or heart in love with sighs himself doth smother,
With my love's picture then my eye doth feast,
And to the painted banquet bids my heart;
Another time mine eye is my heart's guest,
And in his thoughts of love doth share a part:
So, either by thy picture or my love,
Thy self away, art present still with me;
For thou not farther than my thoughts canst move,
And I am still with them, and they with thee;
Or, if they sleep, thy picture in my sight
Awakes my heart, to heart's and eyes' delight.

Animal Group Names

Animal Name Collective Noun
Ant A colony
Antelope A herd
Ape A shrewdness
Ass / donkey A pace or herd
Baboons A troop
Bacteria A culture
Badger A cete
Bass A shoal
Bats A colony
Bear A sleuth or sloth
Beaver A colony
Bee A swarm, grist or hive
Bird A flock, flight, congregation or volery
Boar A sounder
Buck A brace or clash
Buffalo A herd or obstinacy
Camel A flock
Cat A clowder or clutter
Caterpillar An army
Cattle A herd or drove
Chicken A brood or peep
Chicks A clutch or chattering
Clam A bed
Cockroaches An intrusion
Cobra A quiver
Colt A rag
Cow A kine
Coyote A band
Crane A sedge or siege
Crocodile A float
Crow A murder
Cub A litter
Cur A cowardice
Curlew A herd
Deer A herd
Dog A pack
Donkey A herd or pace
Dove A dule
Dragon A weyr
Duck A brace, paddling or team
Elephant A herd
Elk A gang
Emus A mob
Falcons A cast
Ferret A business or fesnyng or cast
Finches A charm
Fish A school, shoal, run, haul, or catch
Fly A swarm or business
Fox A skulk or leash
Frog An army or colony
Geese A flock, gaggle or skein (in flight)
Giraffe A tower
Gnat A cloud or horde
Gnu An implausibilty or herd
Goat A herd, tribe or trip
Goldfinch A charm
Goldfish A troubling
Gorilla A band
Greyhound A leash
Grouse A covey or pack
Hare A down or husk
Hawk A cast or kettle
Hen A brood
Heron A hedge or sedge
Hippopotamus A bloat
Hog A drift, or parcel
Horse A team, pair or harras
Hound A pack, mute or cry
Jellyfish A smack
Kangaroo A troop or mob
Kitten A kindle or litter
Lark An ascension or exaultation
Leopard A leap
Lion A pride
Locust A plague
Magpie A tiding, gulp, charm or murder
Mallard A sord
Mare A stud
Marten A richness
Mouse A mischief
Mole A labour
Monkey A troop
Mule A barren or span
Otter A romp
Owls A parliament
Oxen A yoke, drove, team or herd
Oyster A bed
Parrot A company
Partridge A covey
Peacock A muster or ostentation or pride
Peep A litter
Penguin A parcel or huddles or colonies
Pheasant A nest, nide (nye) or bouquet
Pig A litter
Pigeon A flock or flight
Pony A string
Porpoise A pod
Quail A covey or bevy
Rabbit A nest
Rat A pack or swarm
Rattlesnake A rhumba
Raven An unkindness or storytelling
Rhino A crash or herd
Roebuck A bevy
Rook A building or clamour
Sardines A family
Seal A herd or pod
Sheep A drove or flock
Snake A nest
Sparrow A host
Squirrel A dray or scurry
Starling A murmuration
Stork A mustering
Swallow A flight
Swan A bevy, herd, lamentation or wedge
Swift A flock
Swine A sounder or drift
Tiger A swift or ambush
Toad A knot
Trout A hover
Turkey A rafter
Turtle A bale
Turtledove A pitying or dule
Viper A nest
Walrus A pod
Whale A school, gam or pod
Wolf A pack or route
Woodpecker A descent
Zebra A herd, zeal, dazzle, or crossing (joke)