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September 30, 2015

A Trivia Pearl

Oysters change their gender at least once in their lifetimes. All oysters start off as male, but most change permanently to female by the time they are a year old. Their reproductive organs produce both sperm and eggs, and they can change gender at will. It is technically possible, therefore, for an oyster to fertilize its own eggs.

September 29, 2015

Nothing On TV

Well, nothing on one of the TV sites I sometimes like to use to find programs that aren't available to me. I was looking for A Season of Notre Dame Football, but the search results at CouchTuner gave me this:

When I read that, this scene from Star Wars popped into my head:

Left or Right?

No, not talking about your political views, but telling one from the other.

Just last night I was lying down to watch some programs on my tablet;  I plugged in my earphone "buds" into it, then pulled one side close to my eye so I could see if the tiny letter said "L" or "R".  The first one said "R" and I stuck it in my ear...

My LEFT ear.  I realized my mistake when I put the "L" one into my right ear.  They're molded a little differently to better fit the slant of the ear canal and don't fit correctly if reversed.  Annoyed, I switched them and turned on the tablet. I caught up on some programs, then fell asleep with the buds in my ears.  At least I didn't roll over on my tablet like I've done in the past.

I get up this morning, make some coffee and rub the inside of my ear where the bud had irritated it because I slept on that side, sat down at the computer and tore off yesterday's entry on my trivia calendar and found this for today:

"One out of 4 adults can't tell their left from their right."

Hmmm....I usually don't have any trouble, but will admit to a few cases where I've had to think about it...last night's mix up wasn't typical, though.   A quick search on the Internet showed that bit of trivia to be true.

There's even a test: Right - Left Confusion?

This probably explains why *some* people have trouble learning to march in the military. Not this bunch, though.

September 26, 2015

Red Hair is Really Rare

According to the National Institutes of Health, only 2% or less of the world's population has red hair.  Red hair is associated with the gene MC1R, a recessive and somewhat rare gene and both parents must carry a copy of the gene to produce a red-haired child and often the trait skips generations. Rarest of all are redheads with blue eyes; the majority have brown eyes or hazel or green shades.

Ireland has the highest per capita percentage of redheads in the world -- anywhere from 10 to 30 percent, according to Eupedia, a website that explores European genetics and ancestry. They are almost equally prevalent in Scotland and other pockets of Celtic pride. A slightly lower percentage hail from Cornwall in England and western parts of Switzerland.

The Beverly Hillbillies

Debuted on television on this date in 1962.

How Do You Live the Good Life?

You Live in the Present Moment

You try to live in the here and now. You are fully aware and focused on what's happening.

You figure the past is gone and can't be changed. And the future isn't here yet.

You don't overthink or overreact. You try to just be. What is most important is what's going on in this moment.

You find a lot of freedom in letting go of memories and worries. You are unburdened by life's timeline.

You are spontaneous, daring, and adaptable. You prefer to go with your gut than make a pro con list.

You have less baggage than most people. Each experience is new for you, and every moment is a fresh start. 

September 25, 2015

September 24, 2015

Tiny Tot's Tears Trivia

Newborns cry but they have no tears;  their tear ducts aren't formed until the infant is about a month old.

September 23, 2015

Hungry Raccoon

Note: Original video uploader closed their YouTube account. Not sure why, maybe they felt like they could make more money licensing the video. I did manage to find a news report with part of the original video.

Milkshake Squirrel

Pizza Rat

September 22, 2015

Humungous Fungus

The largest living thing (by area) is a mushroom (Armillaria) located in Malheur National Forest. It covers 2,200 acres and is between 2,000 and 8,000 yrs. old. 

September 20, 2015

What Flavor Kit Kat Are You?

You Are a Dark Chocolate Kit Kat

You are a passionate and quick-tempered person. You know what you love, and you know what you hate.

You are very competitive and even a bit ruthless when you need to be. You have what it takes to get ahead.

You are a daredevil that loves to take risks. You pride yourself on your courageousness, and you love to test your own limits.

You have a real flair for adventure - and it starts with being impulsive. You do what you feel like, and you often feel like flying solo.

Not to wax philosophic about candy, but these results are spot-on...well, maybe I'm flattering myself a little bit...although I do like the regular milk chocolate ones, as well. Dark chocolate is supposed to be better for you, I've read.

They're just about my favorite candy bar. I don't think I ate them much until I saw Richard Simmons being interviewed and he was asked how to deal with chocolate cravings. He said he liked Kit Kats because he could open one up and eat just one segment and satisfy his craving. I was thinking "Yeah, right. Don't think I could stop at one little piece." and he added that he sometimes ate the whole thing. He went on to say that they were fairly low in fat compared to other candy bars.

These days I'm not so much worried about the fat than I am the grams of sugar, but it doesn't seem to affect my glucose levels as much as other sweets and doesn't even come close to what rice or pasta does to my blood sugar.

September 19, 2015

Cat Confiscates Card

I don't think the cat stole it because she wanted it; no, I think the cat went and buried it in her litter box.

Cider Sipping Sum & Song

It takes about three apples to make one glass of cider.

September 18, 2015

Hey, Joe - Jimi Hendrix

On this day in 1970, Jimi Hendrix died in London. He was 27 yrs. old.

September 17, 2015

My Generation - The Who

Today in 1967, The Who appeared on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.

The drummer, Keith Moon, had loaded his drum kit with some explosives, intending to end the song with a literal bang and cement the band's reputation as outrageous counter-culture icons, but instead angered thousands of American parents and left Moon with shrapnel wounds from a broken cymbal and Pete Townsend with permanent hearing damage.

Great band, but yeah, you very nearly DID "die before you got old".

September 16, 2015

Chew On This Trivia

On June 26, 1974, a pack of Wrigley's Gum was the first product with the Universal Product Code barcode ever scanned at a checkout counter.

September 15, 2015

Niagra Falls Webcam

UPDATE: A new cam with a better view.

View the webcam at Niagra Falls and turn up your speakers because you can also hear the awesome sound of the water.  Right now, there's a lot of ice and "steam" that obscures the view, but it's still very impressive.   There's also one to view both falls at once as well as one showing the Lower Niagra River.

September 14, 2015

Wagging Muscle

The only muscle in your body that is attached at only one end is your tongue.

September 13, 2015

What's Your Ideal Pet?

No surprise here.  Spot-on analysis.

Your Ideal Pet is a Cat

You're both aloof, introverted, and moody.

And your friends secretly wish that you were declawed! 

September 12, 2015

The Land Down Under

Australia is the only continent without an active volcano.

That's about the only thing in Australia that won't kill you.

A blast from the past:

Down Under - Men At Work

September 11, 2015

WTC & Flight 93 Crash Site Cams

Live webcams showing the construction of the redevelopment site. The screen shot below is atop the Tower 1 and pointed at the 9/11 Memorial, but there are other cams that offer other views; a different one of the 9/11 Memorial, one pointed at the top of Tower 1 and a couple of the NYC skyline. There are also time-lapse tribute videos.

There is also another 9/11 related cam at the site of the Flight 93 crash near Shanksville, PA. (the webcam seems to operate only during daylight hours)

No "Q"

Q is the only letter in the alphabet that does not appear in the name of any of the United States.

(click graphic for larger view)

September 10, 2015

Smells Like Teen Spirit - Nirvana

Released on this day (Sept. 10), 1991

Lefty Lousy Luck

Over 2,500 left-handed people are killed each year from using equipment made for right-handed people.  The right-handed power saw is the most deadly item.


mundane adjective [muhn-deyn, muhn-deyn]

1. common; ordinary; banal; unimaginative.
2. of or relating to this world or earth as contrasted with heaven; worldly; earthly: mundane affairs.
3. of or relating to the world, universe, or earth.

I probably should have named this blog "Mike's Mostly Mundane".  I DO have a few posts about space, though.

September 9, 2015

Some Sweet Trivia

It takes 12 bees their entire lifetime to collectively produce just one tablespoon of honey.

September 8, 2015

Are You Compassionate Toward Yourself?

You Show Yourself Some Compassion

Whenever possible, you try to be easy on yourself. You aren't always compassionate, but you try.

You believe it's important to cut yourself a break, because no one else might. And you're doing the best you can.

You live a hectic life, and sometimes it's hard to find the time or energy for self-care. You are still looking for the right balance.

And when you're having a hard day, it may be difficult to not beat up on yourself a bit when you're feeling worn down.

No worries if you're not as self-compassionate as you'd like to be. You're getting there, and that's the important thing.

Remember to be easy on yourself in every way. Even when you make mistakes, it doesn't mean that you're broken. 

Inventor of the Dishwasher

The inventor of the first commercially successful dishwasher was Josephine Cochrane, a socialite politician's wife who was fed up with servants breaking her expensive dishes.

September 7, 2015

To All

Here's hoping that everyone who visits this blog - friends, family and everyone else - has a:

September 6, 2015


astraphobia noun [as-truh-foh-bee-uh]

An abnormal fear of thunder and lightning

I love to watch lightning and hear the thunder, but prefer to watch it off in the distance. Like most normal people, I'm afraid of getting hit by lightning and have had some close calls in the past.

To calculate how far away the lightning strike is, use the "flash-to-bang" method: count the seconds after you see the flash, then divide by five to get the number of miles you are from the lightning. The National Weather Service recommends taking cover if the time between the lightning flash and the rumble of thunder is 30 seconds or less, which indicates the lightning is about 6 miles away or closer.

Lightnin' Strikes - Lou Christie

Close Lightning Strike Compilation

Warning: some cursing...and I can't say as I blame 'em.  I wouldn't even go so far as to call it "inappropriate".

Flippin' Out

You Are Genuine

You are focused and inner-directed. You know who are, and you live a very authentic life.

You are quite modest and never too in love with yourself. You aren't perfect, and you don't take yourself too seriously.

You are more ambitious than you let on. You strive to be better without beating up on yourself.

You are highly effective, and others have taken notice. People want to be like you when they see who you really are. 


The title of this quiz post is an homage to an old friend; he was manic-depressive (or bi-polar, if you prefer) and his mood swings were severe, going from sleeping for days at a time to staying awake days at a time, frantically painting or writing. Most of the time his mood was even, though, but when he felt a bout coming on, he'd tell me "I'm goin' to see Aunt Jemima." (meaning, "flipping out", as in pancakes.

Personally, I'd have rather visited with Betty Crocker or even Little Debbie, but that's just me. (not a racist, I just prefer cakes and sweet snacks over pancakes)

September 5, 2015

Walking Around the World

In the average lifetime, a person will walk the equivalent of five times around the equator.

And later in life, most of those miles will be accumulated in the middle of the night, getting up to go to the bathroom.

In keeping with the long-time usual every now and then ToTG custom of a topical/related music video to accompany a trivia post, heres....

Walking the Floor Over You - Ernest Tubb

September 3, 2015

No News Ain't Good News

I noticed the local Amarillo ABC affiliate news feed (in the right-hand column) wasn't working and I'm not sure how long it had been discontinued, but I don't think for much more than a few days before I discovered it.  I looked around the website to see if they had changed out their RSS feed, but it seems they had discontinued it and then went to the websites of the other Amarillo TV stations for a replacement, but neither of them offered a feed.

Oh well.  I'm sure people weren't flocking to this blog to read the Panhandle area news; after all, they don't flock here for any other reason, either.

I guess there IS some good news;  that's one less script to have to load when folks come here.

A Bone to Pick

Your funny bone is not actually a bone, but is an extremely sensitive nerve. 

Be that as it may, it's not funny at all when you hit it!

What's Your Facebook Personality?

Your Facebook Personality is Friendly

You are good at getting people to let loose. You are the fun one in your group.

You use Facebook just to have fun. You don't have an agenda, and you avoid drama.

You easily feel lonely. You like to have a big social support system to count on.

You're happy to be Facebook friends with people you don't know well - as long as they're friendly too! 


September 2, 2015

Groin Injury

While surfing online, I often listen to sports talk radio;  earlier, the hosts were talking about injuries to the Dallas Cowboys and mentioned that one player had a mild groin injury. 

The term "groin injury" has always made me smile a little bit, even though I had one myself back in high school. (pulled a muscle...and THAT makes me giggle a little bit, considering the area of the body the injury occurred...and that I was about 14 yrs. old then)  Not sure why I think it's funny now, because it hurt like the dickens then.  As I recall, it lasted only a few days and I made sure to stretch my groin after that. (more giggles)

Anyway...whenever I hear the term "groin injury", this song from "Cheers" always pops into my head.

September 1, 2015

September Trivia

 photo september_gold_md_wht_zps7zjs3qbl.gif is the only month with the same number of letters (nine) as its place in the year (9th month).

I'm Alarmed

Note:  This will be the first in what I'll call "Behind the Times"  posts...ones that are so big, a single post would take up the entire page or most of it.  Instead, I will backdate them so they won't appear in the normal order, but instead will date the post at the top of them, like this:

Sept. 17, 2015

Surely, by now you've seen or read this story:

Muslim teen Ahmed Mohamed creates clock, shows teachers, gets arrested

The world is outraged over this and I am outraged as well...I'm outraged at the outrage. Here's why:

A couple of yrs. ago, a 10 yr. old boy from Ohio was suspended from school for making a "gun" with his thumb and finger and a yr. before, a 7-yr. old kid from Maryland was suspended for nibbling a Pop Tart in the shape of a pistol. Both of those children were white.

Since those incidents, there have been multiple incidents of children being suspended for bringing Bibles to school or for reading them during supposedly "free reading periods" or recess and there wasn't nearly the uproar that this "It's a clock, not a bomb!" thing has generated.

So, little Ahmed builds a clock and puts it in a pencil box that looks just like a miniature suitcase, brings it to school, shows it to his engineering teacher. The teacher says "Good job." but advises him to not show it to other teachers. What does the kid do? Well, he puts it in his backpack and totes it around school all day, has the alarm go off in the middle of a class, then fumbles around with it and then wonders why people were upset?

What if it HAD been a bomb and everyone was told "It's JUST a clock!" Trust me, that would have ruined everyone's day. "There were no explosives inside along with the clock." Well, it's a school w/ a chemistry lab and even though it's been nearly a half century since I was a kid in school (barely passing Chemistry), I guarantee you I could walk into a school laboratory storeroom right now and cobble together a few chemicals that would kill or seriously injure dozens, maybe hundreds of kids and teachers. Heck, I could probably do that with what's under my kitchen sink (or anyone else's) right now.

People are griping about how silly it is to get worked up over something so innocent as a homemade science project, as well as how "rampant" racism/Islamic phobia is in Texas. Well, there wouldn't have been all this outrage 14 yrs. + 1 week ago, but that all changed on 9/11. No one then considered box cutters all that dangerous, either....maybe accidentally cut your finger with one, but no one thought about flight attendants and pilots having their throats slashed with them (by Muslims, no less) and the planes commandeered and flown into buildings.

As far as I'm concerned. perhaps there WAS a bit of overreacting to this incident, but the catch phase these days is "better safe than sorry".

There are a few things that bother me about this story, though: The clock doesn't look like a clock, not from the photos I've seen. It looks very crude, just like the guts of bombs we've all seen on TV and in the movies. He's clever enough to build the device, yet not clever enough to know that it resembled a TV/movie version of a time bomb? He's ingenious enough to build the thing, yet doesn't understand how to set the alarm? Gimme a break.

Why did the kid build his clock and put it inside what amounts to a miniature briefcase? Why not hollow out an old book, that would have been way cooler, esp. if he had used a book with "time" in the title. I saw several comments under the New York Times article from Boston and Massachusetts residents about how racist Texas was, how stupid we are, how the rest of the country needs to build a wall around the state to keep we inbred bigots and our guns in. Well, you ignorant Beantown asshats, what if some kid (white, brown, black, pink or purple) brings a pressure cooker to Home Ec class "What's in there, Jim?" (or Jane) "Aw, just a TV I made." Seems to me as though people in that part of the country would be a little more sympathetic to the possibility of a homemade bomb.  BTW, what was the skin color and religion of the two brothers responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing?

As I mentioned before, his teacher told him not to show it to anyone else and probably told him why. (but little Ahmed didn't mention that little tidbit in the post-incident interviews)

There's a picture of him in handcuffs, standing there dejected with a look of disbelief that this is happening to him. I think he was smart enough to recognize a photo op when he saw one...or maybe his daddy coached him on how to look. I'm no conspiracy theorist by any means, but this all just sounds a bit too "scripted" to suit me.

The family has already hired a lawyer. (wow, THAT was fast!) Now he'll get a hefty sum for his civil rights being violated and in three/four years, his scholarship to M.I.T. will be waiting...a full ride. He's already been offered jobs by Twitter and Facebook,invited to the White House and to bring his clock.  (where I'm positive the Secret Service will go over the clock with a fine-tooth comb and use explosive-sniffing dogs)

I could rant a LOT more about this, but I'm already tired of it.  I hope this blows over soon; then we can get back to the really important stuff, like whether Bindi will win this season on Dancing With the Stars, the size of Kim Kardashian's butt or whether Caitlyn Jenner wears a push-up bra.

Me?  I'm just gonna worry about how the Cowboys will do Sunday against the Eagles.  It has just as much importance in the scheme of things as does anything else...at least it does to me.(hey, I have a right to skew important priorities, just as much as the next person!)  If Dallas allows Murray to rush for a hundred yards, loses the game and the Philly fans cheer if a Cowboys player gets hurt, then I'm gonna go on social media and rant and rave about the injustice of it all.

Yeah, sure.