Posts Tagged ‘trivia’

Grab Bag Trivia Test:

Q. Half of all 
Americans live within 50 miles of what?

Q. Most boat owners name their boats. What is the most popular boat name requested?

Q. If you were to spell out numbers, how far would you have to go until you would find the letter ‘a’?

Q. What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers and laser printers have in common?

Q. What is the only 
food that doesn’t spoil?

Q. Which day are
 there more collect calls than any other day of the year?

Answers can be found at the bottom of this post.

Grab Bag Poll:

What is/are your favorite product(s) that you have purchased from a TV commercial or infomercial… the ones that actually WORK? I have a couple I will be sharing, but I want to gather your favs as well.

Here’s just a sample of some of the “Hall-of-Famers” in this category:

Please share your TV-driven guilty pleasures in the Comment section at the bottom of this page. I will post some or all of the products in an episode to come.

Grab Bag Photoshop School:

I’ve had Adobe Photoshop, in various iterations, on my computers for years and years. I probably use about 2% of it’s capabilities, not because I don’t want to, but because the program is SO flipping complicated.

But I’ve found some websites that offer free tutorials. I have been gazing over them, and trying some that offer methods that will be most useful for me. Here are some examples and the sites that offer them. Each of these tutorial sites offer far more than just the examples I show here.

Click on the PHOTO to link to that specific tutorial, or the WEBSITE NAME to link to their tutorial listings.



This specific tutorial might be very useful for those who love their photos, just not the other people in them. 😆

Remove a Person from a Photo











(Check out the original images that were used to make the one above.)











Grab Bag Giddy Grub:

Hmmm… Do certain kinds of food make us happier?? Seems there may be more reasons to reduce our intake of animal protein than dietary and cardiovascular concerns.

Personal statement… I am not a vegetarian. However, in the last few years, I have reduced my intake of red meat to once a month or so, and I have increased my non-animal meals to several a week. I think this is a good thing.

I’ll let the good boys (Drs. Oz and Roizen) at RealAge tell you what’s up:

These dinner sides don’t just make your waistline little. They put a serious smile on your face, too.

We’re talking about carrots and eggplant, squash and lima beans, and just about any other vegetable you can get your hands on. Research confirms that people who eat the most vegetables have the brightest moods.

Load Me Up
In a study, the people who loaded up their diets with vegetables and skipped meat altogether had happier moods compared with the people who included any form of animal protein (fish, chicken, or beef) in their diets. Which was a surprise to the researchers who assumed the brain-friendly fats in fish would be key to emotional well-being. But it turns out that vegetables — as well as plant-based proteins like nuts — have a mood booster of their own called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). ALA is a plant-based fatty acid that helps keep a lid on an inflammatory compound linked with depression. (Do this for 20 minutes today and you’ll feel happy for 12 hours.)

Plant Joy
Yep, eating lots of vegetables and no meat had lots of emotional upsides in the study — including less anxiety, less depression, and less hostile feelings. But if you’re not ready to go vegetarian, don’t fear. There are plenty of other ways to get some extra happy into your day, like exercising more, stressing less (deep breathing exercises work wonders), and spending extra time doing the things you love. (One more trick: Spend more time with your good-natured pals. Here’s why.)

Grab Bag Remember December:

Back on December 26th of last year, I shared some info on how the little caps at the end of our chromosomes, called telomeres, can dictate the signs of aging (and by that, I mean visible signs, like more  wrinkles, gray hair, as well as brittle bones, heart disease and cancer, just to name a few delights and highlights of the aging process). That post mentioned stress, lack of exercise and a poor diet as the great “telomere guillotines“.

Now, new research shares some very interesting results showing a distinct telomere benefit to those with higher levels of omega-3 consumption… high omega-3 fish or supplements (my choice is Krill Oil). According to a post on RealAge.com;

Telomeres guard DNA the way plastic shoelace tips stop your sneaker laces from fraying…. Scientists suspect that the omega-3s in fish dinners (or lunches, or supplements) activate the body’s antioxidant defenses against telomere-munching free radicals. These healthy omega-3 fats may also boost activity of a telomere-pampering enzyme called telomerase. Which probably helps explain why the volunteers in a recent study — who all had heart disease and were in their 50s, 60s, and 70s — showed such dramatically different telomere length. During the 5-year study, telomeres appeared to shorten three times faster in the people with the lowest blood levels of omega-3s, compared with people with the highest levels.

And here’s a telomere fun concept I found, reported from research at King’s College in London:

King’s College London examined more than twelve hundred non-alike female twins aged between eighteen and eighty years and found those with more than one hundred moles were half as likely to grow osteoporosis as those with less than twenty-five. People with abundance of moles are known to generate white blood cells having long telomeres.

So….. don’t hate your moles, bulk up on salmon and/or omega-3 supplements, and your telomeres should look like this:

Grab Bag Trivia Answers:

Q. Half of all 
Americans live within 50 miles of what? 

A. Their birthplace

Q. Most boat owners name their boats. What is the most popular boat name 


Q. If you were to 
spell out numbers, how far would you have to go until you 
would find the letter ‘A’? 

A. One thousand.

Q. What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers and laser printers have in common? 

A. All were invented 
by women.

Q. What is the only 
food that doesn’t spoil? 

A. Honey Q. Which day are
there more collect calls than any other day of the year? A. Father’s 

Grab Bag Brain Game:

Yahtzee… without all the noise (there IS bad music, but you can hit MUTE for that) 🙂

Ya! Dice

Grab Bag Funny Stuff:

It’s the 21st Century and….

1. You accidentally enter your PIN on the microwave.

2. You haven’t 
played solitaire with real cards in years.

3. You have a list 
of 15 phone numbers to reach your family of 

4. You e-mail the 
person who works at the desk next to you.

5. Your reason for 
not staying in touch with friends and family is that they 
don’t have e-mail addresses.

6. You pull up in 
your own driveway and use your cell phone to see if anyone is 
home to help you carry in the groceries.

7. Every commercial 
on television has a web site at the bottom of the screen.

8. Leaving the house 
without your cell phone, which you didn’t even have the first 
20 or 30 (or 60) years of your life, is now a cause for panic and you turn around to go and get it.

9. You get up in 
the morning and go on line before getting your coffee.

10. You start 
tilting your head sideways to smile. : )

11. You’re reading 
this and nodding and laughing.

12. Even worse, you 
know exactly to whom you are going to forward this 

and a Video Funny Stuff following up on “The King’s Speech”:

Thanks to Soheir K. for this!

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Grab Bag Trivia Time:

October 4th… today in history, a Russian event made news, an American classic premiered, and an American musical explorer bowed out. What are these 3 events?


Grab Bag Self Stimulus Tip:

No… not that. This is about the economy, silly. This letter is circulating the internet right now, and the awareness it raises is valuable:

My grandson likes Hershey’s candy. I noticed, though, that it is marked 
”made in Mexico” now. (Note from LK… some Hershey products are still made in the U.S.) I do not buy it any more. My favorite toothpaste, Colgate, is “made in Mexico” now. I have switched to Crest. You have to read the labels on everything.


This past weekend I was at Kroger. I needed 60W light bulbs and Bounce
 dryer sheets. I was in the light bulb aisle, and right next to the GE brand I normally buy was an off-brand, labeled, “Everyday Value”. I picked up both types of bulbs and compared the stats – they were the same except for the price. The GE bulbs were more money than the Everyday Value brand but the thing that surprised me the most was the fact that GE was made in MEXICO and the Everyday Value brand was made in – get ready for this – the USA! In a company in Cleveland, Ohio! So throw out the myth that you cannot find products you use every day that are made right here.

So on to another aisle – Bounce Dryer Sheets . . . yep, you guessed it, Bounce cost more money and is made in Canada. The Everyday Value brand was less money and MADE IN THE USA! I did laundry yesterday and the dryer sheets performed just like the Bounce Free I have been using for years and at almost half the price!

My challenge to you is to start reading the labels when you shop for everyday things and see what you can find that is made in the USA. The job you save may be your own or your neighbors!

If you accept the challenge, email everyone in your address book so we can all start buying American, one light bulb at a time! Stop buying from overseas companies!
(We should have awakened a decade ago . . . . . . )
Let’s get with the program . . . . help our fellow Americans keep their jobs and create more jobs here in the U.S.A.


Grab Bag Dry Skin Remedy:


Winter ‘s dry wind will be blowing your skin as dry as a nun’s gullet in no time. If that flakey, tight, dry skin’s got you bugged, here are some tips to start RIGHT AWAY:

  • Try not to bathe or shower for very long. Studies have shown it takes EIGHT HOURS for your body to replace the natural skin oils removed by just one average shower. Speaking from experience, this has made a BIG difference for my skin. I’ll even skip a day if I can… my skin feels and looks so much better for it.
  • Evening Primrose Oil, Borage Oil and Black Currant Oil are all good sources of GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) which is REALLY good for hair, skin and nails. 500 mg. capsules morning and night is a standard dosage. Start this supplement NOW…. in 6-8 weeks you will begin to see improvements.


Grab Bag “Ooops” Moment, but HEY, New Water  Bottle!:

So…. millions of us wanted to do the right thing and stop the senseless and potentially harmful consumption of disposable plastic water bottles. We trotted out and bought some really cool, Swiss made, SIGG bottles. Fun colors! Cool designs!  To achieve a lightweight bottle, SIGG chose to manufacture out of aluminum, which requires a liner to keep aluminum from leaching anything into the bottle contents. OK, I’ll go with that.

Then, in September of 2008, the bisphenol A (BPA) study was released showing enough valid health concerns that BPA plastics have been largely pulled off the market. SIGG was conspicuously quiet as legions rushed to buy their bottles. JUST TWO WEEKS AGO,  a full year after the BPA upheaval, SIGG announced that, well, er, uh, all their bottles made before August 2008 had some BPA in the lining.

might not have been...

Studies have shown that there has been no leaching of BPA from tested SIGG bottles, but customers are PISSED at the deceptive tactics used. SIGG has responded with an exchange program. If you bring your pre-August 2008  SIGG (here is a link to show the differenceto REI (but I believe they require the receipt, and who the heck still has that?), Whole Foods, and perhaps other retailers that carry Sigg, (but call first), you can get a new Sigg in exchange. You can also pay to ship them back to Sigg, and they will send you new bottles. More explained about that here. This exchange program ends at the end of October.

Patagonia is so ticked that they ended their relationship with SIGG over this issue. Other retailers may follow. And where does that leave us? Well, for starters, that whole “trust-us-we’re-neutral-and-harmless-bankers-and-watchmakers-here-in-Switzerland” vibe is taking a hit for sure. As for a good alternative? There’s always the stainless steel Kleen Kanteen…. which…. is…. made in China :-(.

Grab Bag Swine Flu… To Shot or Not to Shot?:

Swine shot

If you’re a number cruncher, it probably makes sense to take the flu shot. The statistical rate of dire complications with the vaccine are very low…. low, that is, until you are one of the statistical few. You can’t predict the future, so I say GO WITH YOUR INSTINCT as to what’s right for you. What do the “experts” say?

In a nutshell…there should be plenty to go around, so you should be able to get it if you want it “just because”. But these are the CDC guidelines encouraging those who fall into any of the following risk categories to take the shot:

  • You are a health care or emergency worker
  • You are pregnant
  • You live with or care for children under the age of 6 months
  • You are 6 months to 24 years old
  • You are 25 to 65 with underlying health conditions (asthma, diabetes, heart disease) or a compromised immune system

Grab Bag Three-Part Funny Stuff:

Part A: Watch your favorite website SPEAK IN TONGUES!


Click on the link below, choose your favorite “dialect” (Jive is one of the best) from the pull down menu, and  type or paste in ANY internet address (www.whitehouse.gov is fun, or see this week’s Grab Bag post in your favorite dialect by pasting this link in: http://www.ellkayblog.wordpress.com) and see what happens. Hilarious.


Part B: See New Daily Home Improvement Tips Martha Stewart never thought of.



Part C: If you’re into Pac-10 college football, or know someone who is, cue this baby up:

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Remember… if you want the type bigger and easier to read, hold down the Apple (command) key (Mac) or Control key (PC) while hitting the + key or rolling the scroll wheel on your mouse to enlarge the type.


October 7th… 1952, 1957… these were the opening days of related television shows that turned out to be an American classic. What were the names of the 2 shows?

Tuesday Health Controversy Tip:

The following is culled from a few different sources; Dr. Andrew Weil, Dr. Al Sears, and a number of commercial and non-commercial sites, mixed with some of my own wording and comments. The bottom line for me, as it is with so many other things, is – at the very LEAST- why should we continue to use something that remains controversial, and potentially harmful, when there are non-controversial, healthier alternatives?

There is something that’s been marketed for years as a “good” alternative to butter, lard, and other edible fats…but a group of chemists practically made it up from scratch. It actually isn’t found anywhere in nature. Chances are you’ve eaten a lot of it without knowing it. You’ll find it in restaurants and kitchens all over the country… it may not be so good for you, and there is a healthier alternative. What is this pretender? Canola Oil. But there are better alternatives. So why is it used in nearly everything?

There are other healthy options available, like olive oil. But olive oil is too expensive to use because it isn’t a major crop. Besides, it burns at higher temperatures, so it isn’t good for everything. And it doesn’t blend well into most mass-produced, processed foods. So the industry went looking for something inexpensive, “healthy” and plentiful that would be easy to store, transport, and include in commercial food production. That’s how rapeseed oil made it onto the industry’s radar screen. It had been widely used in Asian countries. It was cheap, easy to grow, and there was a readily available source nearby, in Canada, where it was farmed in abundance. (Canola is a made-up name – CANada OiL – because “Rapeseed Oil” just didn’t cut it with the marketing department.)

They had to greatly reduce, by bio-engineering, a toxic element in rapeseed, erucic acyd, before they could let us eat it. Furthermore, the vast majority of Canola oil is extracted chemically with hexane, a chemical used in gasoline, leather goods and roofing materials. Dr. Weil clearly advocates that if you DO choose to use Canola oil, buy the “cold/expeller-pressed” (i.e., without hexane) version that can usually only be found in health food stores.

Canola advocates will argue that Canola is safe… but why should I have to listen to debated points of view when ordering salad dressing? I’d rather go natural… especially when the industry’s own Canolainfo.org website put’s it’s best foot forward with this:

“Residual hexane in the extracted press cake and oil is easily removed by evaporation at low temperature. Solvent residues in oils and meals, when produced in accordance with good manufacturing practice, can be said to be truly insignificant.” 

Gee… pass the olive oil, please. Or, if you don’t mind more controversy, check this out…

Coconut Oil

Many voices from various parts of health and nutrition are talking about coconut oil. After being maligned in years past for the saturated fat it contains, coconut oil is making a new stand in the health world, mainly on the potential benefits it may provide. More research is needed, but what is out there looks interesting.

Cons: Contains saturated fat, so should be used sparingly (see note under Pros below). Needs to be used in its “virgin” form, not as easy to find. Lots of claims on the internet.. cures thyroid disease, aids weight loss, most of which are unsubstantiated.

Pros: Scientists agree, coconut oil allows the body to make monolaurin, a boosts immune responses to fight bad guys. Does not burn when used for frying (but you really shouldn’t be frying… period). As for the “Saturated fat” issue.. health.MSN.com weighs in this way: “Coconut oil contains saturated fat, true enough. But studies increasingly indicate that a heart-healthy diet does not exclude saturated fat; rather, an appropriate balance of saturated, polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats is best. Only a mixed-fat diet promotes a healthful ratio of LDL to HDL—the “good” cholesterol—and lowers the risk of heart disease..”

Bottom line, I guess, is 1) don’t assume Canola is “good”, 2) be aware of THE METHOD OF EXTRACTION of canola (and for that matter, for any oil), and, 3) be aware that oils may be (probably ARE) lurking in many of the things we order in a restaurant. So, are you as confused/disillusioned as I am? 

Tuesday Help Tip:

To get something out of a heat register or under the fridge add an empty paper towel roll or empty gift wrap roll to your vacuum. It can be bent or flattened to get in narrow openings.

Tuesday Fun Stuff:

Humans blow smoke rings but dolphins have a much healthier habit.  The attached video is of dolphins playing with rings which they have the ability to make under water. It isn’t known how they learn this, or if it’s an inbred ability.

As if by magic the dolphin does a quick flip of its head and a silver ring appears in front of its pointed beak. The ring is a solid, donut shaped bubble about 2-ft across, yet it doesn’t rise to the surface of the water!

It stands upright in the water like a magic doorway to an unseen dimension.

The dolphin then pulls a small silver donut from the larger one. Looking at the twisting ring for one last time a bite is taken from it, causing the small ring to collapse into a thousands of tiny bubbles which head upward towards the water’s surface. After a few moments the dolphin creates another ring to play with. There also seems to be a separate mechanism for producing small rings, which a dolphin can accomplish by a quick flip of its head.



An explanation of how dolphins make these silver rings is that they are “air-core vortex rings”. Invisible, spinning vortices in the water are generated from the tip of a dolphin’s dorsal fin when it is moving rapidly and turning. When dolphins break the line, the ends are drawn together into a closed ring. The higher velocity fluid around the core of the vortex is at a lower pressure than the fluid circulating farther away. Air is injected into the rings via bubbles released from the dolphin’s blowhole The energy of the water vortex is enough to keep the bubbles from rising for a reasonably few seconds of play time.



Tuesday Blog Review:

Be sure to check last week’s post (September 30, a link to which is found under Recent Posts in the right hand column on this page) for comments made in the last few days which involve Blue Sharks off Padaro, designer wetsuits and Matthew McConaughey 🙂

Melody P. came pretty darn close with last week’s Trivia answers… according to my sources:

1) A nail takes 6 months to grow from base to tip.

2) A healthy human releases 3.5 oz. of gas in an average flatulent emission… unless, of course, we’re talking about the average male.. then it’s a whole lot more. (Why hasn’t there been a government funded study on THAT?)

3) Babies are born with 300 bones, but by adulthood, after some fusing, we only have 206.

Until next week….

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