Archive for the ‘science’ Category

10/02/2022 “Toilet History”   Leave a comment

Always wishing to keep this blog interesting I decided that a short review of the “toilet” needs to be told. It’s an important part of our everyday lives but very few people care to hear anything about it. I’ll do the best I can with the information I’ve been able to find.

  • Before the invention of toilet paper, people use shells or stones, bunches of herbs or, at best, a bit of sponge attached to a stick, which they rinsed with cold water.
  • A Victorian plumber, Thomas Crapper, perfected the system we all use today. The siphon flush which by drawing water uphill through a sealed cistern is both effective and hygienic.
  • In Victorian times, toilet seats were always made of wood. The well-to-do set on mahogany or walnut, while the poor put up with untreated white pine.
  • The idea of separate cubicles for toilets is a relatively modern invention. The Romans, for example, sat down together in large groups.
  • The first toilet air freshener was a pomegranate stuffed with cloves.

  • American civil servants’ paychecks are recycled to make toilet rolls.
  • The most impossible item to flush is a ping-pong ball.
  • The movie Psycho was the first Hollywood film that showed a toilet flushing – thereby generating many complaints.
  • Julia Roberts was once asked for an autograph while she was on the john. She said, ” I’m the tiniest bit busy.”
  • Actor Jack Nicholson has a dead rattlesnake embedded in the clear plastic seat of his toilet.

And one last quote from a member of British royalty. “The biggest waste of water in the country by far. You spend half a pint and flush 2 gallons.”(Prince Philip in a 1965 speech)

NEVER FORGET THE COURTESY FLUSH

09/20/2022 “Statistics and Odd Facts”   Leave a comment

I realize that most people have no real use for statistics and suspect they can be manipulated easily by politicians and others to suit whatever point they’re trying to make. I believe that as well but nonetheless I’m about to supply you with a few statistics and facts you may never have heard before. Here they are.

  • The number of atoms in a pound of iron is nearly 5 trillion trillion: 4,891, 500, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000, 000.
  • Manhattan Island from end to end is less than 1,000,000 inches long.
  • Three pairs of common English rabbits were let loose in Australia, in the middle of the 19th century. Within a decade, the six rabbits multiplied into millions, menacing the country’s agriculture.
  • Coffee is the world’s second largest item of international commerce. Petroleum is first.
  • The abacus was used in the West in medieval times, and then forgotten. Interest in the accounting tool was revived when the abacus was brought to France by Lieut. Jean Victor Poncelet, when he was freed by the Russians after the Napoleons fall.

  • Drilling an oil well 5 miles deep require drilling night and day, seven days a week, for as long as 500 days.
  • In terms of the resources he will use in his lifetime and the pollution he will cause. One citizen of the United States is the equivalent of about 80 citizens of India.
  • During the next minute, 100 people will die in 240 will be born. The world’s population increases by 140 people per minute.
  • There are 2,500,000 rivets in the Eiffel Tower.
  • There are 11.5 psychiatrists per 100,000 population in the United States. In the nation’s capital, however, there are 56.1 per 100,000.

There you have. More totally useless information for you to clog your brain with. The more I find the more I continue to find.

STATISTICIANS HAVE THE BIGGEST ERASERS

09/18/2022 “FOOD”   Leave a comment

Today is my favorite kind of day. I spent yesterday shopping for ingredients and today making thirteen quarts of super-hot chunky black bean and roasted corn salsa. It’s a lot of work but worth every minute of labor. My better-half was born and raised in south Texas and insists salsa should be nice and smooth and hot. I prefer my salsa to be chunky and OMG hot so I jacked up the heat a little because good salsa should always make your head sweat. Enough about my salsa. Let’s talk about some scary food facts since I’m in the mood.

  • While the results of water contamination tests are made public, manufacturers of bottled water do not divulge their test results.
  • Almost 99% of imported food is never inspected by the FDA or the USDA, the two agencies responsible for protecting Americans from tainted products.
  • One in five office coffee mugs contains fecal bacteria and E. coli, which can cause diarrhea, food poisoning, and infections.
  • Vegetarians beware: many low-fat and nonfat yogurts and sweets contain gelatin, which is made from animal tendons, ligaments, and bones.
  • Even when grapes are harvested by hand, some insects wind up in the picker’s baskets. Workers simply don’t have time to inspect every grape individually as they work.

  • Long a staple of the American diet and US economy, corn is a high-carbohydrate, high-glycemic food that fattens up cattle and does the same to humans who consume it in excess.
  • Beef cattle evolved to survive on grass but are regularly fed corn, which has disastrous effects on their digestive systems, requiring a constant regimen of antibiotics to keep them healthy.
  • Peanut allergies afflict an estimated 4 million Americans and can be life-threatening. Almost half of annual emergency room visits and two thirds of deaths due to anaphylaxis are the result of peanut allergies.
  • Independent studies show that bell peppers, celery, kale, carrots, lettuce, and potatoes are the vegetables most likely to expose consumers to pesticides, despite being rinsed and peeled.
  • A diet high in processed meats like sausage, hot dogs, and luncheon meats increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. Chemical reactions that occur during the preparation of these meets yields carcinogens.

ENJOY YOUR LUNCH

8/24/2022 Celebrity Factoids   Leave a comment

I know how addicted our society is to celebrities and all of their odd comings and goings and I have yet to truly understand it. So, in the spirit of “giving the people what they want”, here are a few celebrity tidbits of information you may not have heard.

  • Uma Thurman’s father was the first American to be ordained a Buddhist monk.
  • Ben Affleck’s reformed alcoholic father, Tim, became Robert Downey Junior’s drug counselor.
  • The fathers of Robert Duvall and Jim Morrison were admirals in the U.S. Navy, while Kris Kristofferson’s father was a US Air Force general.
  • When Michael Caine was a child, his mother pasted his ears to his head to stop them from sticking out.
  • David Schwimmer’s mother is the attorney who handled Roseann Barr’s first divorce.

  • The mothers of Oscar Wilde, Peter O’Toole, Ernest Hemingway, General Douglas MacArthur, Bill Tilden and Franklin D Roosevelt dressed their sons as girls for the first few years of their lives.
  • Uma Thurman’s mother had been married to Timothy Leary of LSD fame before marrying Uma’s father.
  • The fathers of Judy Garland, Jacqueline Onassis, Liza Minnelli, and Anne Heche were all gay.
  • Rachel Weisz’s father invented the artificial respirator.
  • Julianna Margulies’s father wrote the “Plop, Plop, Fizz, Fizz” jingle for Alka-Seltzer.

I hope all you celebrity lovers out there enjoying these little factoids. There’s many more that I’ll share with you over the coming weeks and months.

HAPPY HUMP DAY

08/08/2022 “Things”   1 comment

I’m a huge collector of useless information and have been for many years. The more obscure the information the better I like it. These following tidbits contain true information that is not well known but still very interesting. I could write a paragraph on each item to explain the sources but it’s entirely too much work for me. Any blog that writes long and involved articles has a problem. The longer it takes to read my entry the less people will read it. It’s just a fact of life for any blogger.

  • The United States imprisons more of its population than any other country.
  • Barbie is based on a German sex doll.
  • One in three American homeless men is a military veteran.
  • The government can take your property without even charging you with a crime.
  • Cigarette butts are the most common type of litter.

  • The Patriot Act is used in cases that have nothing to do with terrorism.
  • Well over 300,000 tons of chemical weapons have been dumped in the sea.
  • Out of every 100 people, ten weren’t fathered by the man they believed is dad.
  • Head transplants on monkeys have already been performed.
  • For over 100 years, almost every discharge of waste into US waters has been illegal.

The book is 50 Things You’re Not Supposed to Know authored by Russ Kick. It makes for an interesting read.

I HOPE YOU’RE ALL SURVIVING THIS DAMN HEATWAVE

08/02/2022 😁Being Human😁   Leave a comment

Are you human? Has anyone ever honestly asked you that question? If someone ever does, ask for specifics. Being human is a ridiculously hard job since the body seems to be on autopilot most of the time. Breathing, digesting food, eliminating waste, and a host of other things. It goes about the business of keeping us alive and does what’s needed regardless of how we feel. It’s truly the only thing that keeps us alive regardless of how careless and stupid we are. Read on . . .

  • Did you know that on average, the whiskers in a man’s beard grow nearly 6 inches per year?
  • If you’re a man, and your index finger is shorter than your ring finger your one third more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer. Scientists think that men with longer index fingers have lower levels of testosterone, which offers some protection against prostate cancer.
  • Human fingernails grow four times faster than their toenails.
  • The only places on the human body where hair will not grow are the soles of the feet, palms of the hand, lips, and eyelids (not counting eyelashes).
  • Did you know the heart mimics the music you listen to and can trigger physiological changes that increase or decrease your blood pressure?

  • Your left lung is slightly larger than your right lung.
  • The longest recorded bout of pickups lasted for 68 years. Charles Osborne, a hog farmer from Iowa began hiccupping in 1922 and didn’t stop until 1990 at age 97.
  • Right-handed people live, on average, nine years longer than left-handed people.
  • Redheads are more likely than other people to be left-handed.
  • Human beings can survive longer without food than they can without sleep. The longest any person has gone without sleep not using stimulants or other drugs is 264 hours, or about 11 days. The longest a person has gone without food or water (total starvation) is 73 days.

TAKE CARE OF YOUR BODY, IT’S ALWAYS TAKING CARE OF YO

08/01/2022 “Strange but True”   Leave a comment

Since reading blogs slows considerably during these hot and sweaty days of Summer, I thought a short list of strange things were just what is needed today. If all of you aren’t reading much in this heat, here are a few more things you probably won’t read.

  • For passengers who may not quite get it, American Airlines once printed instructions on their snack packages. “Open packet, eat nuts.”
  • A female ferret can die from going into heat and not mating.
  • In 1900, the average white woman’s life expectancy was only 48.7 years. For women of color, the life expectancy was 33.5 years.
  • Your stomach creates a new mucus layer every two weeks.
  • Thomas Edison preferred to do his reading in Braille, and he proposed to his wife in Morse code.

  • American go through 12 billion bananas in a typical year.
  • Roses are the symbol of the Virgin Mary. Catholic “rosaries” were originally made of 165 dried and rolled rose petals.
  • Disney’s Space Mountain roller coaster was the first thrill attraction to be operated by a computer.
  • The first time an instant replay was seen on TV was during an Army-Navy football game on December 7, 1963. CBS director Tony Verna masterminded the idea.
  • Founding Father George Washington was a distant relation of King Edward I, Queen Elizabeth II, Sir Winston Churchill, and Gen. Robert E Lee.

07/21/2022 🫁Human Bodies🦴   Leave a comment

In my teens, my 20’s, my 30’s, my 40’s, and my 50’s, my main interest in human bodies mostly concerned women. These day’s I’ve been forced by Mother Nature to look at bodies from a totally different perspective. It’s not near as much fun but it will have to do. As the old familiar quote states: “when given lemons, make lemonade.” Currently I’m a ball busting, pain in the ass lemonade aficionado. Here are some factoids about the human body from my new lemonade making perspective.

  • Each square inch of human skin consists of 19 million cells, 60 years, 90 oil glands, 19 feet of blood vessels, 625 sweat glands, and 19,000 sensory cells.
  • Man has tiny bones once meant for a tail and unworkable muscles once meant to move his ears.
  • Most people by the age of 60 have lost 50% of their taste buds and 40% of their ability to smell.
  • The largest cell in the human body is the female ovum, or egg cell. It is about 1/180th of an inch in diameter. The smallest cell in the human body is the male sperm. It takes about 175,000 sperm cells to weigh as much as a single egg cell.
  • The human body consists of about 60 trillion cells, and each cell has about 10,000 times as many molecules as the Milky Way has stars.

  • Are only part of the human body that has no blood supply is the cornea. It takes its oxygen directly from the air.
  • At sea level there are 2000 pounds of air pressure on each square foot of your body area.
  • Hydrochloric acid of the human digestive process is so strong and corrosive that it easily can eat its way through the iron of an automobile body. Yet, it does not endanger the walls of the stomach, which are protected by a film of sticky mucus.
  • The daughters of a mother who is colorblind and a father who has normal vision will have normal vision. The sons will be colorblind, however.
  • The sensitivity of the human eye is so keen that on a clear, moonless night, a person standing on a mountain peak can see a match being struck as far as 50 miles away. Astronauts in orbit around the earth were actually able to see the wakes of ships.

Well, there you have it. I hope all of you enjoy your day and for those senior citizens out there:

“GO MAKE SOME LEMONADE”

06/30/2022 “TED Talks”   Leave a comment

I’m going to do something today that I don’t normally do. That is to make a recommendation to my readers. As much as I enjoy writing this blog, I enjoy something else just as much and that’s keeping up to date with technology and all things computer related.

I invested a few hours of my time this week listening to TED Talks. I’m not sure exactly how familiar most of you are with the TED talks program but let me explain. If you really and truly want to get caught up with high technology and the direction that it’s headed, you might want to do the following. Go to website www.ted.com and in the search box, look for talks on artificial intelligence. There are seven or eight speeches given by experts from all over the world on artificial intelligence, what it currently is involved with and where it’s headed. It might frighten you a little and it should. A.I.’s are slowly taking over many of the tasks that humans can’t do as quickly and accurately, and the number is growing by leaps and bounds. It’s becoming a serious issue within the scientific community but it’s just as important to us non-scientists. Some of the information put forth through the talks is a true wake-up call to everyone.

I’d advise anyone to listen to TED talks on any given day when they have a few minutes. Over the last 10 years I’ve listened to many dozens of talks on a myriad of topics, and I’ve learned more than I ever learned in any public school or college I ever attended. I recommend that you give it a listen and hear specific and accurate information you will never hear anywhere else. What can it hurt?

A.I.’s RULE . . . OR AT LEAST THEIR TRYING TO

06/28/2022 “Number Freaking Again”   Leave a comment

I thought for this post I would reintroduce Number Freaking. If you like statistics and far out and freaky explanations of numbers, this is it. I posted about it a number of months ago and the response was excellent. It just goes to show how many freaky people are hanging around out there reading this blog. Enjoy!

WEATHER

  • On average there are 40-60 flashes of lightning somewhere in the world every second. 1.58 billion lightning flashes are estimated to occur each year on this planet.
  • At any given moment there are an estimated 2000 thunderstorms occurring worldwide.
  • There are an estimated 5,844,000 thunderstorms that occur each year.
  • It is estimated that 695,000,000,000,000 (trillion) gallons of water are unleashed by thunderstorms annually. To put that into a better perspective, Lake Michigan contains 1300 trillion gallons, Lake Huron 935 trillion, and Lake Ontario 433 trillion.

TELEVISION

  • One of the most expensive pilot shows on American TV was Lost, costing $12 million and the plane that provided the wreckage on the beach cost the production company $200,000.
  • The total running time of the TV series Friends was 99 hours and 10 minutes (238 episodes). The final episode recorded 52.5 million viewers which is somewhere between the populations of South Korea and Italy.
  • And for those of you who love The Simpsons their total running time amounted to 139 hours and 35 minutes.

ANT INVASION

  • The total number of ants on earth is estimated to be in the area of 826.8 billion tons.
  • It is estimated that there are 300 million trillion ants on the earth (that is 300 quintillion – followed by 20 zeros).
  • The highest estimate of the total number of insects on earth is at six septillions. That’s 6 trillion trillion – followed by 24 zeros).

MISCELLANEOUS

  • Money depreciates in value over time. Allowing for inflation a dollar from 1867 was worth about $12.50 in 2005, and a dollar from 1624 at least $20.41.
  • In 1867 Alaska cost the United States, $7.2 million. In modern dollars this would amount to $90 million.
  • In 1624 the island of Manhattan was purchased from the Indians for $24. In modern dollars that would convert to $489.84.

Isn’t “Number Freaking” just the best. Its definition explains everything simply and it’s easy to understand. Number Freaking is something we do because we have a brain, it’s jazz math, the accountancy of the absurd, forensic speculation, surreal calculation, the art of playing with numbers just because we can.”

THANK YOU, GARY RIMMER

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