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Grab Bag Goes Postal:

July 26th, 1775… the U.S. Postal system is established, and none other than Ben Franklin is the first postmaster. Although he only held the position for a year before going to France as an ambassador of sorts, Mr. Franklin left a vastly improved system in the hands of his successor. Established routes from Florida to Maine and stepped-up deliveries to and from England set the Postal service on the right track. “Going postal” back then meant actually sending and receiving letters. Go figure.

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Grab Bag Cool Tip:

Have you ever just wanted to leave a voicemail, skipping the live conversation necessities of  “Hi, how are you?” or the awkward “The lab results came back and…” ?  Well, my friends, have I got a nice little life hack for you. Found this slick way to go straight to voicemail on someone’s cell phone, even if their cell is on and ready to accept calls (doesn’t work to land lines, although you can place your call FROM a land line).

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Meet “Sly Dial”. Just call (267) 759-3425 (267-SLYDIAL). A recording will ask you to enter the 10 digit cell phone where you wish to leave a voicemail. The next thing you will hear is the recipient’s voicemail greeting, and you leave your message as usual. That’s it. AND IT’S FREE!

The recipient soon sees that they have a voicemail, and it appears from the number you used to place the call, not the “Sly Dial” number. Sly Dial also exists as an App for Blackberry, iPhone and Windows Mobile smartphones, although this ad-free, quicker connection will cost you 10 cents a call or $30 a year, and who needs to dodge that many convos? Well, maybe some of us do…. Anyway, I suggest you enter Sly Dial as a contact in your address book and call it as you would any other contact.

So… it may not do much for your upfront, forthright image, but it might just make life a little easier on those days when you just can’t handle another conversation.

Grag Bag Green Tip:

To date, this is the best “green” website I have found. Their standards are strict, their research is thorough and their offerings are categorically broad, although not terribly deep (possibly because not that many products stand up to their requirements). What I really like about this is that you can pretty much rest assured that everything you find on this website is just about the cleanest and greenest in it’s category. I was delighted to find some of my favorite brands there, and to discover some I had never heard of before.

Browse, learn, enjoy 🙂

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Grab Bag “What IS That” Solution:

What IS that thing on your shoulder? What does it mean when your fingernails get white marks? For those times when you find yourself staring at some UFG (unidentified foreign growth) somewhere on your skin, or a disconcerting ridge appears on your fingernail, here is a dermatological visual database site you will want to keep handy, if only to just to tap into that horrified-yet-fascinated side of you 🙂


DERMNET.COM

“EEEEWWWWW”

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Grab Bag Valuable Sociology Ponderance:

What follows is a synopsis of a Washington Post-sponsored sociology experiment. To see video of the experiment, and to get a deeper sense of the experience itself and the issues it raises, read the Washington Post story in it’s entirety HERE. Many thanks to Corinna G. for sending this to me:

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A musician playing violin in a Washington DC Metro Station on a cold January morning……

He played six Bach pieces for about 60 minutes. During that time approximately 1,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work.

After:

3 minutes
A middle aged man noticed there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds and then hurried to meet his schedule.


4 minutes

The violinist received his first dollar: a woman threw the money in the till and without stopping, continued to walk.


6 minutes
A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.


10 minutes
A three year old boy stopped but his mother tugged him along hurriedly, as the kid stopped to look at the violinist. Finally the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head all the time. This action was repeated by several other children. Every parent, without exception, forced them to move on.


45 minutes
The musician played. Only 6 people stopped and stayed for a while. About 20 gave him money but continued to walk their normal pace. He collected $32.


1 hour:
He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed. No one applauded, nor was there any recognition.

This is a real story. The Washington Post, as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people’s priorities, arranged the entire scenario. Playing incognito, no one knew the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the best musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days prior to this, Joshua Bell sold out a theater in Boston where the tickets averaged $100 per seat.


The questions raised:
In a common place environment at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty; Do we stop to appreciate it;
Do we recognize talent in such an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments …….

How many other things are we missing?

Grab Bag “Wanna be Her” Moment:


Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “Video of Romancing the Road by Growin…“, posted with vodpod

Grab Bag Brain Game:

WARNING:

This one may rob you of many hours….

ASSEMBLER

assembler-game

Grab Bag Funny Stuff:

GREAT BILLBOARDS WE WISH WE WOULD SEE:

Thanks to sis Shelley G. for sending these along…

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