Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Yet another reason to grab one more Special Dark...

Link - Dark Chocolate Helps Blood Flow, Scientists Find

In case you're always wondering where your money goes...

Link - The Great American Dollar Bill Locator

Monday, August 30, 2004

Just in time for flu season...

Link - When Viruses Attack

Friday, August 27, 2004

Fewer in Miss. living in poverty

Link - The number of impoverished people living in Mississippi dropped slightly last year, though the state still is one of the poorest in the nation, according to statistics released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Coast poverty is rising

Link - The number of families living in poverty in South Mississippi shot up by almost six times the rate of population growth between 2002 and 2003, according to the most recent data released on Aug. 26 from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey. (So much for the casinos will make us all rich theory!)

Thursday, August 26, 2004

Lexington Main Street announces '04 Taste Buds men's cooking competition

Plans have been announced by Lexington Main Street Association for its second annual Taste Buds Men's Cooking Competition on Tuesday, September 14, from 6:00-8:00 p.m. at St. Mary's Episcopal Churchyard in Lexington.

This event will feature the gourmet skills of amateur, professional, and aspiring chefs. The winning team of chefs in each category will be determined by the guests, who will vote by donating financial contributions to their favorite team's tip jar.

This major 2004 fundraising event will include Celebrity Taster Howard Ballou, WLBT-TV3 Evening News Anchor from Jackson; live musical entertainment by Good Times Xpress from Grenada; a Silent Auction of many tempting items including an evening's stay at Greenwood's premier hotel, The Alluvian, and dinner for two at Giardini's; door prizes; and tastes of all the dishes prepared by the participating teams of chefs.

Approximately $6000 was raised from the 2003 event. These funds have been used to complete the development of the Lexington Main Street Association's web site: www.lexingtonms.com, and its sister project, publishing of the Lexington promotional brochure, which will be strategically placed at Mississippi Welcome Centers across the state.

Funds have also been used to continue the tree-plantings at the three major entrance corridors into Lexington, to develop the Lexington Historic Church Tour, to develop and complete the Health-Education Walkabout on the Lexington Public Library grounds, to hold the Merchants' Appreciation Day Luncheon for all of Lexington's retail and professional business people, and to publish the quarterly LMS Newsletter.

Other projects planned for implementation by Lexington Main Street Association are the design and construction of Welcome Signs at the three major entrance corridors into Lexington, the replacement of all planters on the Courthouse Square, the dedication of Highway 12/17 Bypass as "Liberty Parkway" on November 11, and the continued promotion and improvement of Lexington.

For additional information or questions, please contact Taste Buds Chairman Debbie Kimbrough by calling 662-834-1318 or by email at dmk47@bellsouth.net, or contact the LMS Manager, Kristi Barry by calling 834-0053 or by email at lexmainst@bellsouth.net.

Lexington Main Street Association is a 501©(3) not-for-profit organization. All donations are federally tax-deductible.

Attorney General Jim Hood Warns Mississippians of National Telephone Scam

Link - Several Mississippians have already been the target of these "wrong number" stock touts. This most recent scam was discovered after people from several states reported receiving suspicious voice mail and answering machine messages.

Prairie Arts Festival founder to return

Link - At the 2004 Prairie Arts Festival, Ben Rosenkrans will unveil his latest Clay County pen and ink, Commerce Street.

Broadway shows shine at Orpheum this season

Link - The fall lineup at the Orpheum Theater in Memphis promises to bring you the best of Broadway, from classics like “Oklahoma!” to the recent smash “Hairspray.”

'Mississippi's Woodstock' ready for its 5th year

Link - The music festival in Lawrence County, set for Sept. 3 and 4, has legendary Percy Sledge (“When a Man Loves a Woman”), The Georgia Satellites (“Keep Your Hands To Yourself”), The Edgar Winter Group (“Tobacco Road”), Charlie Mars and The Circuit Riders on schedule.

File under Only in Mississippi

Link - As many as 19 head of cattle killed when tractor-trailer overturns at The Stack

Author urges students to build a better community

Link - The porch people of the Mississippi Delta who became international heroes to Nelson Mandela and U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor through the books of Clifton Taulbert rocketed to epic proportions amid standing ovations from hundreds at Coahoma Community College.

Hummingbird celebration Sept. 10-12 at Holly Springs

Link - Southerners have always loved their hummingbirds, from the tiny, long-billed fliers that visit their gardens, to the legendary gospel group The Dixie Hummingbirds, whose sweet music stirs the soul.

MSU makes top 25 list in engineering research

Link - Mississippi State University is one of the top 25 engineering research colleges in the country, according to a new study by The National Science Foundation.

Mississippi offers amnesty for taxes

Link - Officials hope the Sept. 1-Dec. 31 tax amnesty period will bring in about $2 million. That's tiny amount in a $3.6 billion budget, but the extra money could be significant as lawmakers struggle to pay for a host of programs, from education to health care.

Ebbers asks to move trial to Mississippi

Link - WorldCom Inc. co-founder Bernard Ebbers, accused of orchestrating an $11 billion fraud that led to the biggest bankruptcy in U.S. history, has asked to have his trial moved to Mississippi from New York.

Happy 100th Birthday to the Banana Split

Link - Let's all go to Baskin Robbins and help celebrate!

Mississippi targets cruise line business

Link - NBA standout Erick Dampier is launching a $63 million Dallas Mavericks career and a debut as a Carnival Cruise Lines star.

Amputee supplies headed to Iraq from Mississippi

Link - A National Guard officer has teamed with a Mississippi hospital to offer a unique gift to amputees in war-torn Iraq - the gift of mobility.

Cool Picture of the Day

Link - Cassiopeia A

Tricks used by different kinds of workers

Link - Fascinating article that lists a bunch of tricks used in different types of work.

Hybrid Honda on two wheels

Link - Fuel cell power also in the works for scooter model

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

Sine language

Link - MIT professor John Belcher and his colleagues developed a Java applet that turns vector field mathematics into kaleidoscopic landscapes. Make your own abstract mathematical art at the site too.

Most Powerful Women In Media

Link - These are the women who control what we think, what we watch--even what we wear.

The World's Most Powerful Wives

Link - The quickest way to get power is to marry it. Make no mistake, however: none of these women are simply arm candy.

Bob Dylan to finally reveal how many roads a man must walk down

Link - Dylan, who at the age of 63 is planning to go on tour with Willie Nelson this summer, is set to focus on significant and influential periods of his life in the first of three books called simply Chronicles: Volume One, according to his publisher.

New Russian-US team to leave for ISS in October

Link - A new Russian-US team for the International Space Station (ISS) will take off from the Baikonur space station in the former Soviet republic of Kazakhstan in October, Russian space officials said.

Online toilet paper holder treasure hunt

Link - A summary of odd and quirky toilet paper roll holders available at online shops.

How to make 3D photos with an ordinary camera

Link - On Engadget, Phillip Torrone provides step-by-step instructions for creating 3D photos (the kind that can be viewed with red and blue glasses) using an ordinary camera and photoshop.

Art of the magazine interview may be dying, as writer laments, or maybe it just changed venues

Link - If interviewing is an art, as the title of Lawrence Grobel's harmlessly readable new book suggests, the state of it is hard to reckon. The author of books about Brando, Capote, the Huston family and others, Grobel justifiably kvetches that the dumbed-down, space-squeezed magazine interview of today is "sick. Anemic. Compromised."

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Site Is Mac Daddy of Apple Deals

Link - A site for cut-rate Apple products has amassed a loyal following by taking the unusual approach of relying on readers for bargain-hunting tips.

Best Of The Best New Gadgets

Link - Love cutting-edge technology? If you're looking for the latest gear to help you communicate, compute and be entertained better, read on.

Asteroid shaves past Earth's atmosphere

Link - The closest observed asteroid yet to skim past the Earth without hitting the atmosphere, was reported by astronomers on Aug. 22.

Monday, August 23, 2004

Reporting to Work Mid-Flight

Link - Business travelers will be able to surf the Web securely on long-distance flights by combining services from Boeing and iPass, the companies plan to announce on Aug. 23.

Maxim editor promises girls for readers

Link - The new editor of Maxim is trying to win back readers in the competitive men's magazine market -- by getting them dates.

What $50-per-barrel oil means to you

Link - Supply is shaky as ever, demand is relentless and heating season just is around the corner. Here's what the daily march into record territory means at the gas pump and to the economy.

Highest tornado ever observed in U.S. photographed this year on top of mountain. With pics

Link - Cool weather shots

Vote on your favorite beginnings to novels

Link - Opening Hooks is a database of opening sentences to novels. You can contribute your favorite book beginnings to it and rate (from 1 to 5) the books already in the database. There are about 20 books up so far.

Transcripts of OnStar Service Conversations Not Selected for Commercials

Link - You’ve heard the spots, where the helpful voice of the OnStar satellite representative rushes to the aid of the panicked motorist. But have you heard them all? John Warner digs through the transcripts that didn’t make the final cut.

Friday, August 20, 2004

Wiki Catalogs CEO Blogs

Link - There's now a list of CEO blogs over at The New PR Wiki. This is the brainchild of Neville Hobson. If your CEO blogs and is missing from the list (or you know of others), please edit the page. There are two notable RSS feeds - one for the list itself (RSS) and another that aggregates all posts (RSS).

30-second bunny theatre

Link - My favorites are Jaws and The Shining

Thursday, August 19, 2004

10 highest trans-fat foods

- Cake mixes
- Cereal and energy bars
- Chips and crackers
- Dried soups
- Fast food
- Frozen entrees
- Margarine
- Nondairy creamers and whipped topping
- Packaged cookies and candy
- Packaged doughnuts, pies and cakes
(Source: Prevention magazine)

The best road trip sites...

I'm still hungering for my summer road trip...so I'll take it online, I guess.

Randmcnally.com - Requires a membership fee of $34.95, but the top-rated site makes up for the investment. Plug your starting point and your destination into the "Plan a Road Trip" program and out pops a detailed itinerary with the "best driving route, places to stay and attractions."

Byways.org - Specializes in historic and beautiful destinations in the United States. Each region offers several trip possibilites, from the Coal Heritage Trail in West Virginia to the Seaway Trail along the Great Lakes.

Gorpaway.com - Caters to campers and RV traveleres. U.S. and international itineraries include Louisiana's Old Spanish Trail and the Colorado's San Juan Highway. Great information on hikes and campgrounds.

Teaching computers to be nice

Working on a computer would be far less aggravating if the machines learned some manners, says a study in the International Journal of Human-Computer Studies. Inspired by the Chinese saying "No one would blame a polite person," Jeng-Yi Tzeng of the National Tsing Hua University in Taiwan wrote two versions of a computer-based guessing game - one polite and the other brusque. About 270 students played one of the two versions for 30 minutes and then were questioned about their experiences. The students who had played the polite version were far more likely to call it fun. In fact, 60 percent of them said the apologies - text messages such as, "We are sorry that the clues were not helpful" - added to their enjoyment. "Arrogant software rubs people up the wrong way," Microsoft scientist Eric Horvitz tells New Scientist, "just like an arrogant person would."

(I just want my computer to stop scolding me for not shutting down properly when it freezes up!)

Piscopo entertaining a run for gov

Link - Kind of makes the Arnold Schwarzenegger/California thing not so funny.

Campaign Game Mimics Real Life

Link - A new simulated election game that lets you play campaign manager to a presidential candidate is both thrillingly and disturbingly similar to real-world politics.

Yahoo! Starts Corporate Blog

Link - Yahoo! has started its first corporate blog - the Yahoo! Search Blog. Jeremy Zawodny of Yahoo! has the FAQs. The blog allows for both comments and trackbacks.

Collaborate!

Link - Have you ever wanted to be an art director or are you a photographer looking for an assignment? The Collaborate website lets art directors and photographers connect over the internet and work on creating a photograph.

Death And Dying Resource Guide

Link - It's not easy to find resources on the end of life. Here are some places to start.

Office workers give away passwords for a cheap pen

Link - Workers are prepared to give away their passwords for a cheap pen, according to a somewhat unscientific - but still illuminating - survey published today.

Not looking for Mr. Goodbar

Special Dark, Krackel, Mr. Goodbar, Hershey's Chocolate....in that order.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Shed serves BBQ with side of blues

Link - The Shed barbecue restaurant is planning its first blues festival, and some big names in music are expected to play.

Is your name sexy?

Link - An MIT study claims there's a science to good names.

Monday, August 16, 2004

What's brewing...

Coffereview.com - Experts critique the world's finest coffees with links to sites that sell them.

Peets.com - For a complete education in the art of coffee...click on "Brewing Basics" (under "Learn") to read about six rules for improving the flavor of your brew. Peet's Coffee Selector, accessible from the coffee shopping page, is a coffee-colored flavor chart. Choose the hue that resembles coffee you would enjoy...then add it to your cart.

Starbucks.com - Take their Coffee Taste Matcher quiz to be sure you're starting with the right cup for your palate.

Tour, or even stay at, Elvis' apartment

The public housing apartment where Elvis Presley spent his teenage years may soon be a hotel suite like no other. Uptown Memphis now owns the old Lauderdale Courts housing project and has undertaken a major renovation to create 347 apartments renting from $515 to $1,430 a month.

The work includes restoration of the 689-square-foot apartment that was home to Presley and his parents, Vernon and Gladys, from 1949 to 1953. It opened for the first time to public tours for the 27th anniversary of Presley's death at Graceland on Aug. 16, 1977.

Uptown Memphis plans to offer the apartment tours on the anniversary of his death each year and on his birthday in January. For the rest of the year, the apartment will be available for private, short-term rentals. Prices have not yet been set.

The complex, built in 1938, is on the National Register of Historic Places as an example of public housing provided by the Works Progress Administration. Closed in 2000, Lauderdale Courts faced demolition.

Market game is learning tool

Link - Teens this fall can learn about their nation's free enterprise system through the Mississippi Stock Market Simulation. Fall registration for students in grades 4-12 and teacher training are now under way by the Mississippi Council on Economic Education.

The stock market game enables teams of public and private school students to invest a hypothetical $100,000 in the stock market over a 10-week period. The simulation can be used in social studies, mathematics, business, language arts, family and consumer science, personal finance and gifted studies classes throughout the state. Sponsors of the game include Entergy, Smith-Barney and The Clarion-Ledger.

Cash prizes to the winning team are awarded at the elementary, junior and senior division. The grand-prize winning team is awarded a trip to New York to see how the real financial world operates.

Teachers can earn one-half continuing education unit by enrolling in free teacher training that begins Aug. 30. Teachers receive a copy of Learning, Earning and Investing, a curriculum that provides 24 lesson plans that complement student participation and serve as an introduction to the free enterprise system.

Hurricane Charley's Force Tricks Experts

Link - Forecasting a storm's intensity is still a shaky science, as Hurricane Charley showed in a big way when the storm escalated quickly from a category 2 to a 4. Experts blame media focus for misleading residents about its track.

Weboggle

Link - It's that dice based word search game, but online.

When Free Software Isn't

Link - Before installing that "free" software tool, you'd do well to read the fine print that comes with it.

Modern Students Devour Old Math

Link - Vedic math, a compilation of arithmetic shortcuts believed to have been written by ancient Indians who lived centuries before Christ during a glorious period in Indian history called the Vedic Age, has now crawled into the 21st century.

What's in a hurricane name?

Link - Hurricane Names Have Been in Place Since the 1970s

10 free things to do in Las Vegas

Link - But sometimes you get what you pay for...

Strange food news: Computer Games Teach Nutrition

Link - The virtual baked beans were falling fast. The unopened can had to go somewhere, but where? Not the simulated freezer. "This food wouldn't spoil in that location," the computer-generated voice said. "But the quality of food could be affected, or you might be using space in your freezer unnecessarily." Another lesson learned from the Fantastic Food Challenge, a package of four computer games designed to teach people who get nutrition aid such as federal food stamps how to make better use of their food.

Major Religions of the World

Link - Interesting stuff...

If not Bush or Kerry, vote Barbie

Link - Mattel launches 'presidential campaign' of flagship doll, which is being sold by Toys R Us for $20.

Julia Child: bon appétit

Link - Celebrated cook taught America to relish life's bounty

The Penis Prank - with fascinating graphs, charts, and photos of pork products

Link - A review of the best (and worst) penis enlargement Web ads and e-mails.

Recycle your old electronics at Office Depot

Link - Office Depot is doing a promotional event with HP in which the store will offer free electronics recycling through Labor Day for residents of the continental US. Drop off your old TVs, monitors, CPUs, printers, PDAs, etc., for no charge, and Office Depot will deliver the e-junk to HP for recycling.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Morris' feline muse dies from dog attack

Link - Five years after Mississippi author Willie Morris' death, the inspiration for his book "My Cat Spit McGee" has lost the last of his own nine lives.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Turning Slackers Into Workaholics

Link - Researchers use a gene treatment to turn off monkeys' dopamine receptors -- yielding harder-working, more focused monkeys. Despite obvious applications in the corporate world, the scientists say they're just trying to understand mental illness.

No Green Light for Hubble Rescue

Link - NASA's chief says he's ready to send a robotic mission to save the Hubble Space Telescope, but the agency has no formal plans or funds to do so. By Amit Asaravala.

Don't Touch That Button!

Link - Digital Cameras Change More Than the Way We Take Pictures

20,000 Leagues ride fan-site

Link - This incredibly exhaustive fan-site for the old Disney World 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea ride was created by a die-hard who only rode the ride once, when he was three ("All I remember clearly is a porthole, a whole lotta bubbles, and OH MY GOOD GOD THERE’S A GIANT SQUID ATTACKING THAT SUBMARINE!" Now he's collected a ton of media related to the ride, including transcripts, videos, stills, and interviews with various crew-members.)

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

An Original Way to Go Postal

Link - Every year, the U.S. Postal Service receives 40,000 submissions for new stamp images and releases about 35 of them. But now, thanks to PhotoStamps, a trial service from Stamps.com formally announced Tuesday, the number of new stamps hitting envelopes nationwide could become nearly infinite.

Disney Blog Drums Up Buzz for 2005 Flick

Link - Although it's still a year away, Robbie Stamp, executive producer of the upcoming flick Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, and his team have launched a weblog to promote the upcoming Buena Vista Pictures flick while it's still in production. Douglas Adams' "Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy" has a long following. It started as a BBC radio series in 1978 and has since spawned a series books, theater productions, a BBC TV series, an award-winning computer game and now a movie.

Put RSS on Your Palm

Link - FeedBurner has launched a neat mobile RSS feed reader for late-model wireless devices.

Beautiful saturation

Link - The stunning photography of Yann Bertrand.

Living dangerously

Link - Face it, folks, from eating lunch to hugging your teddy bear, life is full of perils.

Beethoven's Stairway to Heaven

Link - Joe Wolfe is a composer who has created and orchestrated adaptations of Led Zepplin's Stairway to Heaven as they might have been composed by the likes of Beethoven, Glenn Miller, Schubert and Bizet.

History of the "Information Superhighway"

Link - Ian Peter, an Internet strategist based in Australia, recently announced the launch of his Net History project, which aims to collect a wide range of historical materials about the development of the Internet, including the various applications and protocols that combined to make the Net we know today.

Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Northeast Mississippi group collecting oral histories of World War II era

Link - The Northeast Mississippi Historical and Genealogical Society is looking for help in collecting personal histories, particularly from the World War II era.

Man needs transplant help

Link - Unity Baptist Church is hoping to help with an auction or bake sale on Aug. 28 and has already set up a trust fund.

Hubble Instrument Goes Dark

Link - One of the four science instruments onboard NASA's ailing Hubble Space Telescope failed last week, the space agency said on Aug. 6. The Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph, or STIS, was used by astronomers to detect black holes and measure the temperatures of stars, among other things. The instrument failed to respond to a test command and went into suspension shortly after noon Eastern Daylight Time on Aug. 3, according to a mission status report.

Get What You Really Wanted Week

Link - On Aug. 12, eBay will launch its first ever weeklong "Get What You Really Wanted" campaign that directs shoppers to various highlighted categories from jewelry to electronics.

"Unusually Good" Meteor Shower Expected Thursday

Link - The annual Perseid meteor shower is gracing our skies for the next 48 hours, looking better than ever, as Earth passes through a filament trailing from a comet's tail.

Monday, August 09, 2004

Retracing 'Freedom Summer' in Mississippi

Link - Teachers Visit Sites of 1964 Push for Black Voting Rights

Archeologists studying Indian Mounds in Greenville

Link - Arriving at the Winterville Mounds this week, Hailey and archaeology student J.T. Stark rolled the university's "Destiny 2000" powered parachute from its trailer onto a grass runway on the property of Delta & Pine Land Co. in Scott.

Elvis Fan Appreciation Day attracts international tourists

Link - Elvis fans from around the world gathered on Aug. 7 to celebrate Fan Appreciation Day at the Elvis Presley Birthplace.

How not to buy happiness

Link - Robert Frank has an article in the journal Daedalus on how not to buy happiness. Frank suggests that money can buy you happiness, but only if you spend it correctly: Considerable evidence suggests that if we use an increase in our incomes, as many of us do, simply to buy bigger houses and more expensive cars, then we do not end up any happier than before.

Life 2.0

Link - Rich Karlgaard's new book shows how people are transforming their lives by moving to smaller cities.

Driving The New Corvette

Link - In the early 1990s, the car had what Corvette Chief Engineer Dave Hill calls "a near-death experience." Sales declined. The Corvette averages around 30,000 U.S. sales per year, but that number was down to the low 20,000s in the first half of the last decade.

Wash. State Team's Private Rocket Explodes

Link - A team taking a low-budget stab at the $10 million Ansari X Prize for private manned spaceflight suffered a setback on Aug. 8, when their rocket malfunctioned and exploded after shooting less than 1,000 feet in the air.

Deception Detection

Link - Psychologists try to learn how to spot a liar

Lewis Carroll's scrapbook online, courtesy of the Library of Congress

Link -The Library of Congress has digitized and placed online Lewis Carroll's scrapbook. It has never been published, so this is the only way to see it without going to DC.

The Great Neurotic Art

Link - Steven Shapin, a science historian, has turned in a lengthy essay situating Atkins and other low-carb diets in the historical context of dietetics, Biblical shame and naturalism.

The virtue of idleness

Link - From the Bible on, moralists and nags have promoted the benefits of hard work and early rising. They are mistaken, argues Tom Hodgkinson. For breathing space to create and time to reflect, indolence is essential. He offers a guide to easy living, pleasurable illness, and effortless sex.

ENIAC close-ups as art photos

Link - Benjamin C. Pierce has posted a gallery of beautiful closeup photos of ENIAC, built between 1942 and 1946, one of the first computers ever contstructed.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Mississippi military can see Glory of Dresden free

Link - Active Mississippi military personnel and their dependents can attend the Glory of Baroque Dresden exhibit in Jackson free. "With the help of sponsors like BancorpSouth, we raised $250,000 to cover the cost of the tickets for all active duty military and their dependents," said Jack Kyle, Mississippi Commission for International Cultural Exchange director.

Beach-Reading For Intellectuals

Link - For while you're at the World's Sexiest Islands! Yin and yang.

World's Sexiest Islands

Link - Many people suffer from a previously undiagnosed condition: travel envy. This all too common condition can be characterized by the belief that no matter where sufferers visit, they still feel there are places out there where other people are having a better time. However, those people who know about the sexiest islands in the world don't have this problem. They're already having a better time.

Oops...Google divulges share error

Link - Google Inc. may have illegally issued more than 23 million shares of its stock to hundreds of employees and consultants, injecting an unexpected legal risk into the online search engine leader's highly anticipated IPO.

Boyfriend pillow

Link - Doesn't snore or fart AND has a vibrating arm.

Mars Gone Wild

Link - Millions of amateur astronomers are poring over pictures of the Red Planet. Experience the thrill of discovery - or self-delusion - for yourself!

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Bird Watchers Could Soon Flock To South Mississippi

Link - Bird watchers could soon be flocking to South Mississippi thanks to a new map. On Monday, the Audubon Society unveiled its coastal birding trail map. It's the first publication in the state to highlight the best spots in the six southernmost counties for spotting birds.

Annual 'Dead Zone' Spreads Across Gulf of Mexico

Link - A huge "dead zone" of water so devoid of oxygen that sea life cannot live in it has spread across 5,800 square miles of the Gulf of Mexico this summer in what has become an annual occurrence caused by pollution.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

China to hold Miss Plastic Surgery pageant

Link - China is giving the beauty pageant a surgical makeover with plans to anoint its first Miss Plastic Surgery this October, state media say. Open to women from any country, the only requirement in the made-to-order competition is proof of inauthenticity -- in the form of a doctor's certificate of cosmetic surgery, the China Daily said.

Future-Fake products

Link - Spam" is an exhibition opening in Berlin this week of fictional tech products. Developed by arts collective Human Beans, the counterfeit creations include the forehead-mounted Neurocount that tracks your loss of brain cells, the Sleepwell sleep-managing wristwatch, and the Powerpizza theft-prevention laptop case.

Dictionary goes hi-tech

Link - If the high-tech revolution leaves you at a loss for words, don't despair — now you can find "MP3" and "DSL" in the dictionary.

Cezanne's portrait of Sean Connery and other contemporary/classic remixes

Link - Today on the Worth1000 photoshopping contest: portraits of contemporary film-stars as executed by classic painters of yore. Great stuff...

Monday, August 02, 2004

Forbes.com adds RSS Feeds

Link - Forbes.com now offers RSS (Really Simple Syndication) in XML format for many of our content areas. The content within each of these RSS feeds contains story headlines and brief descriptions. Each headline links directly to full story on Forbes.com.

Blog Building 101

Link - Feedster has put together a great tutorial on how to build a blog using Blogger.

Mrs. Kerry ain't no Betty Crocker...

Link - Ever since voters began telling Teresa Heinz Kerry that they didn't think much of the pumpkin spice cookie recipe her office had submitted to Family Circle's presidential cookie bake-off, an aide said, Mrs. Heinz Kerry, the wife of the about-to-be Democratic nominee, has been thinking how she could tell America the truth: the recipe isn't hers.

An answer to the age-old question...

Link - Why do men have nipples?

Shockingly large black hole is 10 billion times mass of sun

Link - In an article posted June 10 to the Astrophysical Journal Letters website, astrophysicists at Stanford report spotting a black hole so massive that it's more than 10 billion times the mass of our sun. More important, this heavyweight is so far away that the scientists think it formed when the universe first began to light up with stars and galaxies, so it may provide a window into our cosmological origins.

Ancient Chicha Brew In Peru Is "Beer Of Kings"

Link - Archaeologists working in southern Peru found an ancient brewery more than 1,000 years old.

The Tease of Memory

Link - Psychologists are dusting off 19th-century explanations of déjà vu. Have we been here before?

Difficult, odd and aloof genius becomes Mississippi tourist magnet

Link - The Tokyo fashionista in Rock & Republic jeans raced as fast as her snakeskin stilettos could carry her toward the bronze statue of William Faulkner lounging on a bench.

Attention, Atkins Dieters

Link - Now even your headwear can be carb-free...

Sunday, August 01, 2004

Two new recipes

I've tried two new recipes in the last few weeks that were worth sharing...

Simple Chicken Mozzarella

Makes 8 servings, 20 min. prep time, 25 min. cooking time. (I got home at 6 p.m. and we has supper at 7 p.m.--and it tastes great too!)

6 (1 1/2 lb) skinless and boneless chicken breast halves (I used the Italian-seasoned, pre-marinated chicken breasts)
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
2 tbsp olive oil
28-oz can crushed tomatoes in thick puree
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 1/2 cups shredded Mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Dip the chicken breast in egg and coat with breadcrumbs. Heat oil in a large skiillet on medium high heat. Brown chicken on both sides and then drain.

In a bowl combine crushed tomatoes, bell pepper and mushrooms. In a large 11x17 inch baking dish, evenly spread 1/2 of the tomato mixture. Arrange chicken on sauce and top with remaining tomato mixture. Sprinkle with cheese.

Bake the chicken for 25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. (I served it with vermicelli, but the recipe didn't call for any so it is not included in the nutritional info below.)

Nutrition facts per serving: Calories 290, Fat 11 g (cholesterol 110 mg), Carbohydrate 19 g, Fiber 1 g, Protein 28 g.

Source: Redpack Crushed Tomatoes in Puree

AND

Lasagna with tomatoes and cheese

1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg white
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
9 lasagna noodles
2 cups tomato sauce (recipe follows)
3/4 c. shredded skim-milk mozzarella cheese

Combine the ricotta, Parmesan, egg white and pepper.

Cook the lasagna noodles according to package directions. Drain and place noodles in a single layer on sheets of foil or wax paper. (I didn't do this and the noodles were fine. I just drained and ran water over.)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray. Spread 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce over the bottom of the baking dish. Top with three lasagna noodles, then spread with one-third of the cheese mixture. Drizzle with another 1/2 cup of the tomato sauce then sprinkle with 1/4 cup of the mozzarella. Top with three more lasagna noodles and repeat the layers, ending with the mozzarella. Cover with foil and bake 25 minutes; uncover and bake until bubbling and slightly crisp on top, about 10 min. longer. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Tomato sauce:

4 tsp olive oil
35 oz can tomatoes, drained and chopped
1 garlic clove minced
1/4 tsp salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Heat the oil in a nonstick saucepan, then add the tomatoes, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until reduced to about 2 cups, about 15 min. (I added more spices...oregano, basil and parsley, to taste.)

Source: Weight Watchers' Simply the Best Italian

Suggestions: This basic recipe is very good. I think it would have been too bland for my family's taste without adding more spices, however. And the next time I cook it I am going to add mushrooms and a few veggies to the tomato sauce. And the book says if you use no-boil lasagna noodles you can omit the instructions about the noodles.

Nutritional info: Make 8 servings. 5 WW points per serving. Per serving: 237 calories, 7 g total fat, 3 g saturated fat, 15 mg cholesterol, 29 g total carbs, 2 g dietary fiber, 14 g protein.

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