Tuesday, January 26, 2016

It's All About Energy

I think the topic of energy is fascinating. I'm amazed at how energy is always being exchanged and converted through billions of interactions around us every day. I'm the furthest thing from a scientist, but I do recall learning about kinetic and potential, or stored, energy. These can include chemical, electrical, magnetic, radiant, thermal, mechanical, nuclear, and other energy forms. I also remember learning the first law of thermodynamics which states that energy can not be created or destroyed, but it can be changed from one form to another.

It's easy to see large scale energy interactions like water freezing or being converted to steam, but some people fail to acknowledge the finer energy interactions in our lives that are not always visible to the naked eye. Everything we do involves energy interactions. This includes our thoughts, the words we speak, the music we listen to, media we watch, and the food we eat.

I used to be much more closed minded about body energy and dismissed it as a touchy-feely topic but, as I have aged, I have become more sensitive to that kind of energy. Whether or not you believe in chakras, meridians, auras, etc., it is hard to deny that we are always absorbing or giving off vibrations to or from our environment and others. Have you ever come across someone you just didn't seem to click with because you felt they gave off "bad vibes"? Have you been attracted to others easily due to their pleasant personalities?

The environments we submerge ourselves in can produce either positive or negative energy interactions. Examples of positive exchanges of energy include thinking pleasant thoughts or recalling good memories, giving and receiving kind greetings or compliments, enjoying music you like, a hug, or a massage. Negative energy exchanges include things like getting a sunburn, incurring injuries, dealing with criticism and contention, verbal assaults, or experiencing physical trauma.
What kind of energy do you surrounded yourself with? What kind of energy do you transmit to others? Are you a person who criticizes, complains, and harasses others or one who edifies, enlightens, and encourages? We can choose to surround ourselves with either positive or negative energy. When it comes to living and interacting with other people, my 1st scientific law of productive energy can be summed up as "Don't be a jerk and be nice to others." You are welcome world. I guess I'd better get ready for a Nobel Prize nomination.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Hoverboard Clarification

Since Christmas I've heard quite a buzz about hoverboards in the news. Most of the news stories about these popular Christmas gifts involve people getting hurt from nasty falls and some cheaper models had even exploded or caught on fire. That is a big concern for the public but not nearly as alarming as the fact that people are actually calling these devices "hoverboards".

Alleged hoverboard

I'm a little embarrassed to confess that when I heard all the talk in the news about hoverboards I thought "finally technology is coming around". I assumed these devices would be super expensive and big and bulky and noisy if they were actually going to allow a person to balance on them while they literally flew a foot or two off the ground.

THIS is a hoverboard
Eventually I realized that what people were referring to as hoverboards were actually a bunch of short, wide skateboards with only two wheels. A hoverboard should be a board that levitates and actually hovers above the ground, not just a small Segway that has been amputated at the shins.

I didn't realize it until now but I have a hovercraft. It hovers just as good as all the new hoverboards but mine can actually hold 12 people! The new advances in technology are amazing....and so is society's ability to redefine words.
High Capacity Hoverboard
In the future please refer to these popular transportation gadgets as "two wheeled rolling balance platforms" so you don't spread false hope to the world. Thank you.

Monday, December 28, 2015

The Art of Writing

I have learned that if you want to be a successful writer who people care to read, then it helps if you choose the right words and put them in a particular order. Some people think writing has to do with your passion to convey an idea or your ability to express yourself, but I think it is just a matter of being lucky with the word combinations you select.

People like JK Rowling, Stephen King, and Tom Clancy have many fans who like their books because of the words they use and how they arrange them. I, on the other hand, have never been properly trained in the art of word arrangement and, as a result, fewer people read my blogs.

Each time I attempt to write a post, it's kind of like playing a scratch off card or like picking numbers for the lottery. I just hope I choose the correct words and then get them in the right order. Shakespeare was another person who was good at writing (word arranging). I think that is quite impressive since he had many more words at his disposal than we do today. I also respect him because he never used worlds like LOL or totes in any of his works.

Speaking of great authors, I have only read a handful of works by Shakespeare, Twain, and Dickens so, in an attempt to come across as being cultured, I play the card game Authors in order to brush up on the classics. It's kind of like Cliff's notes, but an even more abbreviated version, since all you ever learn is the title of the book. When someone mentions Little Women, I say something like, "Louise May Alcott really hit the mark with Little Women." Then for good measure, I might also say "It's too bad more people don't appreciate Eight Cousins." You just need to be careful who you try this on because it can backfire if you do it to someone who has actually read the classics.

 PS- If you take my advice and use the Authors card game for the basis of your literary knowledge, be careful when referring to Alfred Lord Tennyson and Charles Dickens. They look very similar.

Monday, November 30, 2015

Little Caesars Pizza Insights

I have never met anyone who didn't like pizza. Like most people, I really love pizza. There is something amazing about that magical food. I know all pizza is not created equal so it can make a big difference where you purchase pizza from.

Little Caesars is probably the most basic and cheapest pizza around. It obviously can not compare with any gourmet pizza establishments, but if you are hungry for pizza and only want to spend $5 it is the best option I know of. Most things get more expensive with inflation over time but their hot and ready pizza appears to be immune to price increases.

My biggest pet peeve with Little Caesars (aside from the quality) is the ambiance inside the stores. I am not expecting a dimly lit Italian restaurant with musicians playing in the background, but it would be nice if every time I give them my business they would not thank me by screaming "TWO PEP!" in my face.

"One Cheese, One Pep!"

Seriously Little Ceasars, your employees yell loud enough to rupture my eardrums with their attempt to notify the cooks in back that they need to replace a pizza from their hot and ready inventory. There has to be a better way than screaming around your customers. It's a fast food restaurant, not an off shore oil rig.

My other request for Little Caesars would be to put some olives on the pepperoni pizza. I'd pay $7 bucks instead of  $5 for a little more variety and flavor, but if I want that from them it nearly doubles the price and I have to wait over 10 minutes for them to make it. I guess I could always start a rival pizza company that serves delicious gourmet pizza in an authentic Italian atmosphere for 5 bucks. Never mind, I guess I'll just let them keep yelling at me.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

The State of Blogging aka "Where are they now?"

This post will be kind of like a historical documentary. I wish I had black and white photos and Ken Burns to help me out but for now I am just going off of memory.

I started blogging in 2007. It was new for me to share my thoughts with strangers on the Internet, but I really enjoyed it. When I started blogging some of the big kids on the block were Sass, Jeanne, Dr. Zibbs, Candy, PeeWee, Eric, Pearl, Bee & Rose, Anna,  Kelly, Cheeseboy, Kristina P, Israel, Pedaling, MCat, Mami, and Crystal. I'm sure I have left off several others but since nobody reads blogs anymore they will never know.

Times were good and I personally felt that 2009 was the high Renaissance of blogging. With the growing popularity of Facebook, Twitter, and all of the other social media platforms, blogging took a punch to the gut and many of us scaled back significantly. Others just disappeared.

There have been times since then that I felt like Will Smith in "I am Legend" when I write a blog post. "If any of you are still out there, I will be at these coordinates on this date, don't give up hope, etc."

Nothing is more sad than when you click on a link that used to be a fun blog to follow and you see there has not been any activity for four years or even worse an error message or notice indicating that the blog has been deleted. I'd like to see a "Where are they now?" show that tells you which bloggers are still going and which ones are in a federal penitentiary.  Kind of like a high school reunion. I don't know what many of them are doing these days but I know Cheeseboy changed platforms and is now a superstar on Twitter.

In spite of the many changes to blogging, there are still some people who continue to blog. Retrospace and Semi Coherent Thoughts are still going and I see others still blog several times a year, but it is nothing like it used to be. I have to say that the two most successful bloggers from the original group in my opinion are:

1) Kal at Calvin's Canadian Cave of Coolness. He still rules Blogger. He has not been deterred by the decline in blogging and has to be the most consistent and prolific blogger I have ever seen.

2) Mary at One Perfect Bite. Her food blog is amazing and I salivate like Pavlov's dog when I hear it's name.I don't really consider myself a food blogger kind of  guy but I am totally impressed with her expertise and success.

Despite blogging not being what it used to be, I am still going to continue to blog. I'd like to thank all of the bloggers over the years who blessed my life with information, entertainment, and laughter.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Sympahty for the Slowly Informed

This post is about people who share videos on Facebook or other social media sites long after they came out. I kind of feel bad for people who are excited to share funny new stuff  they have recently discovered but they don't realize it is ancient history as opposed to fresh news. They share links like ""Charlie bit my finger" or "Star Wars Kid" years after everyone else has seen them.

I have noticed that this usually happens with older folks who are a little slower on the pop culture/social media uptake. I also just realized that I fit into the older folks category since I am a now a grandpa, but I still feel young at heart.

I actually don't mind people sharing videos long after they were popular. It's not like they are dairy products that will go bad after a certain date, but it's just that I can tell they are expecting to get a big reaction from viewers but instead get a "oh yeah I saw that 9 years ago when it came out."

The videos listed below are the type of stuff I'm talking about that I still occasionally see someone post expecting to get a fresh reaction from viewers.

Leave Brittany alone
Chocolate Rain
The Evolution of Dance
Susan Boyle audition
Rick Roll'd
The Harlem Shake
Hitler's Downfall subtitles
The Grape lady falling
Ms. Teen South Carolina
The Ice Bucket Challenge

Anyway, I hope I don't come across as a snob with this, I just wanted to express my condolences to the people who don't know how long some of those videos have been around. By the way I just came across this funny commercial I thought you guys might get a kick out of it.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Ring Worm- T.M.I.

sample picture from the Internet
I recently noticed a small semi-circle on my upper leg that looked like a scratch. It just appeared out of the blue and I was not sure what it was. When I asked my wife's opinion she said it might be ringworm. I looked up pictures of ringworm online and it looked similar to what was on my leg. The next day the semi-circle turned into a full circle and looked like I had been hit by a paintball. My heart sank since it appeared to be ringworm.

My self esteem went down knowing I was afflicted with something with the name "worm" in it. I felt so dirty like maggots and worms were breeding in my skin. I did some extensive research (looked in Wikipedia) and was relieved to find out there are no actual worms in ringworm, it is actually a fungus. So the good news is I didn't have worms but the bad news is freaking fungus is growing on my skin!

Learning of this was stressful for a person who showers at least once a day, wears clean clothes, and washes their hands regularly. What hygiene law had I violated in order to deserve this?

I have since learned that ringworm is actually called tinea corporis.and is caused by dermoatophytes. I had athletes foot when I was a little kid which is a similar condition but I have not had to deal with anything like this since then. Ringworm is contagious and is usually picked up in locker rooms. Apparently it is very common among wrestlers. Side note- after learning about this and cauliflower ear, I am glad I was not a wrestler.

On the bright side, I am grateful to have this just on my leg. After googling ringworm pictures I realized it could have been much worse. I've gotten over the original stigma from when I got the diagnosis. It doesn't bother me as much now, in fact, it's kind of growing on me. (Badum-ching.) I recently purchased some anti-fungal cream which appears to be helping. I am excited for it do go away so I can move back home from the leper colony.