Monday, May 16, 2011

Denmark and Baking soda

          I finally got my book, titled "Travels in Alaska" by John Muir, in which I am excited to read and bore you with the details in the weeks to come.  The book itself only cost me $0.99, which I bought from a place called Half Price Books(  Unfortunately the three locations that are around me didn’t have it available so they had to ship it to me from Washington, the state, which cost me more then the book.  However, I still didn’t spend more than five bucks.  Just thought I would share that because not only when you buy a secondhand book are you paying less for a book that was probably read once then tossed to the side, but you are saving trees and the planet.  Actually that really isn’t true because they probably already chopped down the tree to make the paper.  But you still pay less for it, still an upside.
          Last week the weather was good from Tuesday on, but my car, which has multiple issues, decided it was time to have the radio stop working.  The fact of getting into a blazing hot car with no air and the drivers side window has issues rolling down isn’t enough for the fifteen minute ride home, but now I have to deal with all that while listening to the sound of the road.  Sigh.  When I bought the car for 500 clams I knew it had issues but I didn’t care because the motor ran great and it gets 30+ miles to the gallon and the radio worked then.  Now that there is no radio I realized how many bad noises it makes.  It almost scares me to drive the thing now. 
          So Denmark is becoming my new favorite country.  As you remember I did a ramble on a picture that was taken in Denmark (April Fools post) which is one of my favorite pictures.  Well the other day I read an article stating that Denmark is “the happiest place on Earth.”  Take that Disney world.  A recent poll/study showed that despite the high taxes and dreary weather the people are among the happiest in the world.   Who’d thought when I was looking at the pissed off youth in front of the fake subway car, cursing his mom with some Danish words, that they are the happiest people.  Shows how little you can tell about a country just by looking at a picture.   
          I also have to add my new favorite state to this post, New Hampshire, and only for this reason;

What says American like "live free or die." 
             My challenges seem to have fallen by the waist side so I decide to come up with something good.  So after searching I stumbled on “Seven Surprising Uses for Baking Soda”.  Yes that’s right, baking soda. The article gives seven ways to use baking soda which include brushing teeth, washing hair, face, and body with, use on acne, use as a deoderant, and mixing with water then drinking for an upset stomach, I may not do that one, unless i get an upset stomach. So by next week my teeth should be whiter, skin softer and acne free, stomach calm, hair cleaned, and fridge be odorless.    
          Well I am on my way to fix a car, read a book, and buy some baking soda.  So until next week, don’t hold someone back, they may honor you the same respect someday.

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.”                                                                 -Groucho Marx

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


    well im dry.   Yes it rained, but it seems to be raining less, around 4 out of the 7 days a week now, and when its not raining it is sunny and beautiful.  Now I can finally start talking about something other than the weather. I have talked about food, arts, fitness, politics, and the weather, so enough with the small talk.
      For those that don’t know I work in the medical field and I have for almost ten years now.  I have worked on a squad, at a family doctor’s office, a general ophthalmologist, and now I work as an ophthalmic photographer and teach CPR.  I have had the chance, nay, a privelege to meet the most intriguing people with the most interesting stories.  One of my favorites was a woman who was born in Transylvania.  Yes the home of Dracula. Naturally I asked about draculas castle, she simply replied, “Scary.”  All the documentaries you see and the ghost stories you here, the over played acting of Dracula is all commercialized anymore. But for someone who grew up just over fifty miles from the real home of Dracula still has fear in hear voice when she talks about it.  Though not overbearing fear, now that she is well into her seventies and has lived in the states for quite sometime, but stil a slight hint of fear.  I could only imagine what is was like as a kid, hearing the stories from the old town folk.  I asked if she had ever been to the castle and without hesitation, “no,” it wasn’t a tourist trap then but a real place where death and carnage took place. At the time primary mode of transportation was still horse and buggy even though cars had been around for over forty years they still lived the old style and told the horrifying stories. Even though she’d never gone I could tell it was not because of lack of transportation but fear.
    Dracula, whose real name was Vlad Tepes or Vlad the Impaler, ruled  in years 1448, again from 1456 to 1462, and again in 1476.  He was considered the impaler due to his revenge against the Ottoman Empire(they killed his father and brother) where he impaled his enemies.  Not only did he just impale his enemies but their families too.  Now Wiki doesn’t refer to him drinking blood or biting his victims, but he did torture those in his way.
    Doesn’t seem to scary when you hear the true story unless of course you lived then and was part of the Ottoman Empire but to a young girl in Transylvania in the time of World War II I could only imagine the ghost stories she was told.
    Well this week I was planning on reading another book but since it still hasn’t come in the mail I’ll just have to put it off until next week.  You may suggest I should just go to the library, but as slow as I read I would go broke from late fees.  So until next week, learn something new like I did, the truth might surprise you. 

“ To draw you must close your eyes and sing.”    -Pablo Picasso

Monday, May 2, 2011


Well it has certainly been a long week.  So much to talk about that has gone on in the past week but I promise to keep my rant short.  I could talk about the devastation of my home state Alabama, my prayers and thoughts got out to my southern friends and family, or I could talk about Donald Trump being put in his place about President Obama being born in Hawaii, but I wont bore you with that one either.  I’m not even going to talk about the death of Bin Laden(finally). No, no, I’ll keep it simple.
    Yes I have mentioned that it has rained here for the past month but I wasn’t sure how much it had really rained until today. Curious until I couldn’t stand it anymore I decided to dig up some numbers and this is what I came up with. Let me first touch on the subject the major cities with the most rainy days versus the cities with the most rainfall. Obviously most rainy days is just that.  Out of the year how many days is there precipitation(rain and snow). Out of the major cities in the USA  the top of the list is Buffalo, New York raining an average of 166 days out of the year.  I assumed it would have been a west coast city like Seattle which ranked number four with 154 days, still a lot.  Columbus, Ohio ranked a little lower at number seven averaging 138 days out of the year.  In the month of April, Columbus sees an average of 14-15 days of rain. But for 2011 it brought much more raining a total of 25 days out of 30.  Needless to say, I didn’t get out much.
    Now what major cities see the most precipitation.  Well, New Orleans toped that list with 64.2 inches averaged yearly and Birmingham, Alabama see an average of 54 inches yearly, ranked at number four, Miami, Florida and Memphis, Tennessee in the second and third spot of major cities.  Again, I was surprised a west cost city wasn’t at number one.  With Columbus averaging at 38.5 inches yearly and only 3.3 inches in April, we totaled 7.14 inches this April, double the average and a new record.  The previous being set in 1893 at 7.08 inches.  That’s a lot of rain in one month.
    Again this is data from major cities alone, but what is truly the wettest area in the United States. MT. Washington, New Hampshire takes the cake averaging 101.9 inches yearly and 209 days of rain/snow. They also averaged the most cloudy days at 244 days with thick cloud cover. Wow, still surprised not a west coaster took that one.  A little more weather records;  Prospect, Alaska dipped down to a brisk -80 degrees Fahrenheit in 1971 to take the coldest and Greenland Ranch, California took the hottest at 134 degrees in 1913.  Driest is Las Vegas with 4.5 inches of rainfall a year and sunniest is Yuma, Arizona with 90% of sunshine a year.  Georgetown, Colorado takes the snowiest  with 63 inches.  A bit of information that is both useless and interesting(at least to me) at the same time. So, for my challenge this week, stay dry.
    People say that weather affects the mood, I hope it gets sunny and warm in the south soon because they need it more than I do.  Until next week, whether your in the south, north, east, or west, keep your hope strong because there are sunnier skies yet to come, literally and figuratively.

“Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it.”                                                           -Helen Keller