Monday, January 31, 2005

Shawn, you're smartest when it comes to Social Intelligence

Tickle's last-ditch effort to get me to buy my complete intelligence profile...

Shawn, you're smartest when it comes to Social Intelligence

People who score highly in social intelligence may be healthier than their less socially intelligent peers. This is true because people who have stronger relationships and wider social networks tend to be less susceptible to illness than lonely people.

The Multiple Intelligences Test

Shawn, you're smartest when it comes to social intelligence...

You've got people smarts! Social intelligence refers to the ability to read other people and react appropriately. As a result, you probably have a pretty keen sense of others' motivations most of the time. It's likely that you can also spot the difference between what people say and what they really mean.

This understanding of behavior and human nature can help you go far. After all, it's been said that it's not what you know, but who you know that counts. And you have a way with people. Your social intelligence may manifest as having the gift for gab, being a top-notch networker, or an excellent listener and friend. However you put this intelligence to work, you're sure to be admired for an abundance of social know-how.

Your Multiple Intelligences Report shows you your scores on all six intelligences, and how your scores in intelligence compare to others. It's ready right now!

Find out your greatest smarts here.

Every GM model to get OnStar, stabilizer

Link - I don't have OnStar and never have, but just about every woman I work with either has it in her car or insists that she will have it in her next car - so if selling cars is in the end about selling to women, as they say, this is a wise move. (My women friends rave about if you have a flat, you just press a button and someone comes to change the tire for you. I have a cell phone and a husband which I expect to accomplish the same thing.)

Additive May Help Chips Lower Cholesterol

Link - Tortilla chips might not be health food anytime soon, but science may have found a way to make them lower your cholesterol. Researchers are frying chips in oil spiked with an ingredient from plants called phytosterol, which can soak up cholesterol without harming the taste.

Now if they could just find some way to get the queso dip and the chicken chimichanga to lower my cholesterol, I'd be set.

Handheld DNA Scanners to ID Species Instantly?

Link - Imagine a muggy summer night—steak sizzling on the barbeque, cold drink in hand, and hundreds of insects mobbing the porch light. Suddenly a mosquito dive-bombs your bare arm. You flatten it with a smack but not before it sucks a drop of your blood. Did you just contract the West Nile virus? If Paul Hebert gets his way, in about ten years all you'll need to do is feed a fragment of the flattened bug into your handheld scanner for analysis. Moments later, the little machine will identify the species with a photo and description, allowing you to determine if you are at risk.

The M Sorter = No more brown M&Ms!

Link - Or red ones either! Does anyone remember the red M&Ms cause cancer scare in the 80s? I do...because my best friend kept giving me all the red ones. Red is my favorite color - I thought she was being so sweet. So one day I tell her, "This is so sweet of you to always save the red M&Ms for me. Thank you so much." She says, "You're welcome. But I'm not giving them to you because they are your favorite color. I don't want to eat them because they cause cancer."

Imagine my face here. (And, yes, somehow we are still best friends - and at 35 I have yet to develop cancer. But if I ever do, you can bet I'll be reminding her of these episodes when she's driving me to chemo!)

Wal-Mart to sell the iPod shuffle?

Link - There’s word over at AppleInsider that mega-retailer Wal-Mart is going to start selling the iPod shuffle in its stores.

Tool for Thought

Link - One often hears from younger writers that they can't imagine how anyone managed to compose an article, much less an entire book, with a typewriter. Kerouac banging away at his Underwood portable? Hemingway perched over his Remington? They might as well be monastic scribes or cave painters.

Revenge of the Right Brain

Link - Logical and precise, left-brain thinking gave us the Information Age. Now comes the Conceptual Age - ruled by artistry, empathy, and emotion.

Civil rights slayings in Mississippi

Link - The names of people killed in Mississippi and listed on the Southern Poverty Law Center's civil rights memorial.

Dahmer's widow says enlightenment, not money, heals

Link - Ellie Dahmer, whose husband was killed by the Ku Klux Klan in the 1960s, would be eligible to receive monetary compensation under proposed legislation in the Mississippi Senate, but she says money isn't the best way to honor her husband's sacrifice.

Bush's remarks about Iraqi elections

Link - Text of President Bush's remarks on Sunday about the Iraqi elections, as transcribed by eMediaMillWorks, Inc.

Historic district designation sought for boulevard in Pascagoula

Link - Beach Boulevard may soon become a historic district. The Pascagoula City Council is seeking the designation, which would make the area the city's fourth designated historic district. The move would make it easier to market the area as a tourist attraction, officials said.

Shelter kids need new clothes

Link - The Harrison County Emergency Shelter is seeking donations of new clothing for abused and neglected children.

Keesler reins in drinking

Link - 80 volunteers offer free rides to fight DUI

Sunday, January 30, 2005

NASA readies possible space rescue

Link - Two years after Columbia, officials expect a smooth return to flight but prepare for the worst.

Men's Carnival of the Recipes XXIV

Link - Being of the male persuasion, Kin organized things in a manner appropriate for you manly-man types. Food is categorized as follows:

1. For me
2. For my mates
3. For that special person
4. For the kids when no one else will cook for them

And my All-American Crockpot Chili got voted "men's food for men" by Kin. I'm feeling my testerone levels rising already! ;) Great job, Kin!

Spice up your life...

Link - If you want to try new spices without buying a whole jar, you'll like Pinch Plus herb and spice packets. Each foil packet contains a tablespoon of an organic dried herb or spice and folds closed to keep contents fresh. The packets also come in booklets. (95 cents for single packs, $10.50 for a pack of 10 and $6 for booklets)

For the chef on your Valentine's list...

Link - Any cook would LOVE a piece from this new line from Lodge in bright red. The company, known for its cast iron products, has introduced its first enameled pieces: Dutch ovens in two sizes and 2-quart oval casseroles. (And the handles almost look like hearts too.)

Around-the-world chocolate sampler

Link - Give chocolate lovers this pretty sampler from French chocolatier Francois Pralus. It includes 10 chocolates made with cocoa beans from different plantations around the world. ($34.99, 877-337-2491)

If she's as sweet as Tupelo honey...

Link - Buy her some for Valentine's Day. Tupelo trees, indigenous to the southeastern United States, are the source of some wonderful honey, which can only be harvested during three weeks in April when the trees blossom. The honey is great in tea or on cornbread.

Gala to honor memory of Beth Finch

The Junior Civic League of Clinton's Hearts of Gold Gala, the annual fund-raiser for community projects, will benefit the University of Mississippi Medical Center's Department of Neurology in memory of Beth Finch, a Clinton resident and former state Junior Miss who died on Sept. 13, 2004, in an automobile accident in Biloxi. Beth's mother, Emily Finch, is a longtime Junior Civic League member.

The semi-formal event will take place Feb. 11 at 7:30 p.m. at the Country Club of Jackson and will feature The Big Daddy Band. Guests can visit the silent auction and win door prizes.

Tickets are $37.50 each and the winner of a $2,500 grand prize will be announced at 11 p.m. Tickets can be purchased by calling (601) 924-3776 and sponsorships are available by calling (601) 924-7958.

Mobile gym moves Louisiana seniors

Link - A Carencro fitness club owner has come up with a novel way of promoting health care for low-income elderly people - a gym that will come to them.

Isn't love wonderful?

A group of professional people posed this question to a groupof 4 to 8 year olds, "What does love mean?"
The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined. See what you think...
" When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn't bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all even when his hands got arthritis, too. That's Love. "Rebecca - age 8
"When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouth." Billy - age 4
"Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shavingcologne and they go out and smell each other." Karl - age 5
"Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most ofyour French fries without making them give you any of theirs." Chrissy - age 6
" Love is what makes you smile when you're tired." Terri - age 4
"Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK." Danny - age 7
"Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss" Emily - age 8
"Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen," Bobby - age 7
"If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate," Nikka - age 6
"Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday." Noelle - age 7
"Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well." Tommy - age 6
"During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn't scared anymore," Cindy - age 8
"My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don't see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night." Clare - age 6
"Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken." Elaine-age 5
"Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford." Chris - age 7
"Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day." Mary Ann - age 4
"I know my older sister loves me because she gives me all her old clothes and has to go out and buy new ones." Lauren - age 4
"When you love somebody, your eyelashes \r\ngo up and down andlittle stars come out of you" Karen - age 7
"You really shouldn't say 'I love you' unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget," Jessica - age 8
And the final one -- Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge. The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child.
The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly entleman who had recently lost his wife. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman's yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there. When his Mother asked him hat he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said, "Nothing, I just helped him cry."

NASA-related teaching workshops offered at JSU

Link - The Jackson State University/NASA Educator Resource Center at JSU will sponsor workshops focusing on implementing NASA-related curriculum and resources in mathematics, science and technology education for K-12 teachers.

Workshops include Feb. 9, Punch Up Your PowerPoint with NASA Internet Resources; Feb. 16, Simple Classroom Web Site Design; Feb. 23, Teaching with Technology and NASA Resources; and March 2, Mars Activities: Teacher Resources and Classroom Activities; and March 16, Hands-on Mathematics Activities and the Internet.

Each workshop is 9 a.m. till 3 p.m. in Room 102 of the College of Education and Human Development Building on the JSU main campus. Free 0.5 CEU credit is offered for each workshop. For more information or to register, call Yvette Turner at (601) 979-1178.

Feb. 1 deadline set for JA scholarship forms

Link - The National Association of Junior Auxiliaries is accepting applications through Feb. 1 for its graduate scholarship program. Applicants must be pursuing graduate-level studies for a year that address the special needs of children in areas that include counseling, psychology, mental retardation, speech pathology, exceptional children, hearing impaired, gifted and talented. Awards are not given to those working toward degrees in administration or general education.

Kids can learn all about rockets at Astro Camp

Link - Children 9 to 12 can learn what makes rockets fly as they build and launch a model rocket during StennisSphere's next Astro Camp. The next session begins on Feb. 12. The cost is $50 per camper. To register or for more information, call (800) 237-1821 or visit the Web site.

Iwantmyvacation.com

I don't watch TV at all anymore. But I blog in the living room where my husband is watching TV and he'll tell me to look something up on the Web while he's watching TV.

He kept seeing this ad for iwantmyvaction.com and told me to go to the Web site and see what it is. It's a Web site for "vacation advocacy" (otherwise known as Universal Studios Orlando).

And it's really quite clever, I think. They never give away during the commercial who they are. (Usually, someone high up just HAS to have the logo or recognition somewhere for the company after paying the large dollars for the TV commercial.)

The site, aiming to "help people take back the vacations they deserve," says 26% of Americans don't take vacations. Our average annual vacation days are 13, compared to 25 for Japan, 26 for Canada and 28 for Britain. (Italy gets the most with 42 vacation days.)

There's also a Bash the Boss game and a tab for Ideal Vacation...which of course leads you to the Universal Orlando Web site.

Clever and fun...good job.

Old cowboy or lesbian?

An old cowboy sat down at the bar and ordered a drink.

As he sat sipping his drink, a young woman sat down next to him.
She turned to the cowboy and asked, "Are you a real cowboy?"

He replied, "Well, I've spent my whole life breaking colts, working
cows, going to rodeos, fixing fences, pulling calves,bailing hay,
doctoring calves, cleaning my barn, fixing flats, working on
tractors, and feeding my dogs... So I guess I am a real cowboy."

She said, "I'm a lesbian. I spend my whole day thinking about women. As soon as I get up in the morning, I think about women. When I shower, I think about women, when I watch TV, I think about women. I even think about women when I eat. It seems that everything makes me think of women."

The two sat sipping in silence.

A little while later, a man sat down on the other side of the old cowboy and asked, "Are you a real cowboy?"

He replied, "I always thought I was, but I just found out I'm a lesbian."


National Children's Study will follow 100,000 children from before birth to age 21

Link - Next month, the federal government is launching an unprecedented study of how children's environment affects their health. The study will help doctors better treat our children and our grandchildren.

The study will be conducted in 96 areas across the nation, covering every geographic, demographic, ethnic, racial and environmental scenario. Participants will meet face to face with researchers at least 15 times, and they'll intermittently supply data via telephone, computer or mail-in questionnaires. Samples of air, water, dust and soil from their environment also will be collected.

Customized M&Ms for Valentine's Day (or any occasion)

Link - Have your own message printed on M&Ms. It's $9.49 for 8 oz (minimum order of 32 oz). 2 lines, 8 characters max per line. But you have to place your order by 1/31 to ensure Valentine's Day delivery.

Jazz Fest tickets go on sale tomorrow

Tickets go on sale Monday for the 36th Annual New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, April 22 to 24 and April 28 to May 1.

Headliners include Dave Matthews Band, James Taylor, Steve Winwood, Randy Newman, Nelly, B.B. King, Elvis Costello, and Widespread Panic.

Also for the first time, El D'a Latino or Latin Day is planned for April 24. Latin entertainment for the entire day will include Colombian superstar Juanes. It all takes place on the Congo Square Stage.

Daily tickets for the Heritage Fair - all events in the infield of the Fairgrounds Race Course - are $20 through Feb. 22. On Feb. 23 advance daily tickets will be $25. These advance tickets are subject to service charges at the various outlets. Tickets at the gate will be $35. Daily tickets for children under age 12 are $5 in advance and at the gate.

To purchase tickets, call (800) 594-TIXX (594-8499) or visit www.nojazzfest.com. TicketMaster is also selling tickets.

Lottery history

Link - An abbreviated look at the history of lotteries

Flying Jennies welcomed back

Link - The Flying Jennies return to Biloxi following a 45-day deployment to Iraq, Afghanistan and the horn of Africa.

You better back that "Azz" up counselor!

Link - Here are some actual quotes from the oral arguments in Positive Black Talk Inc. v. Cash Money Records, No. 03-30702 (Dec. 17) being heard on appeal by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals concerning a copyright dispute over the song "Back That Azz Up."

New Way for Stars to Keep Truckin'

Link - Ashton Kutcher's got a CXT. So does the Toronto Raptors forward Jalen Rose. Jay Leno and Nick Lachey, star of MTV's "Newlyweds," have each taken one for a test drive. And West Coast Customs, the body shop from MTV's "Pimp My Ride," is already calling itself the "official customizer" of the International CXT.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

From the rink, to the ring

Link - Tonya Harding tries to fight off her past in new arena

Pineapple Cheese Ball

I'm going to take a brief Valentine's Day break and focus on another very important national observation...Super Bowl Sunday. Here' s a great appetizer for your get-together. (And I've molded the cheese ball into the shape of a football for a Super Bowl party.)

Pineapple Cheese Ball

16 oz. cream cheese
2 tbsp chopped green pepper
2 tbsp chopped onion
1/4 cup crushed pineapple, drained
2 tsp. seasoned salt
2 cups chopped pecans

Soften cream cheese. Add green pepper, onion, pineapple, seasoned salt and 1 cup pecans. Mix well. Shape into a ball and roll in remaining pecans. Chill for several hours. Serve with crackers and/or fresh vegetables.

Gardening by number

Link - For the Valentine with a brown thumb (like me). A pre-planned, foolproof garden that's like paint by number for your backyard. He or she will get plants in a grid that shows exactly where to place them. Prices start at $82.

If you can't survive without him...

Link - Give him a survival kit for Valentine's Day. This one is perfect for a glove compartment or a trail bag and has a flashlight, a knife, a first-aid kit in more stuffed into a sports bottle.

Feeding America

Link - A team at Michigan State University Library has created a Web site called Feeding America: The Historic American Cookbook Project, designed to display the full text of 75 major American cookbooks and works on food published between 1798 and 1922.

The site offers complete page images and text transcriptions of all the books, with author biographies, amini-exhibit of kitchen implements and culinary glossary.

Gourmet magazine's Valentine's Day page

Link - Delicious ideas for wining, dining, and indulging the ones you love

Ralph Eugene Meatyard

Link - The Lexington, Ky.-based optician bought a camera in 1950 and began taking photographs of his children, albeit a little different than most of the family photos you see. He discoverd odd angles in everything he saw, but always photographed everyday life.

OTB Fun with Fiction Contest

Link - The goal is to change one letter of a book title so as to give the story an entirely new meaning. After the altered title, offer a one or two sentence explanation of the new story. Winner announced Tuesday night.

There's something about a man in an apron...

Link - Almost 80 percent of women executives say they'd support a stay-at-home spouse, according to this survey by Real Truth Marketing & Joy. (And count me among those 80 percent too!)

Valentine recipes

Link - Chocolate recipes from Mr. Chocolate himself, Jacques Torres

What's your favorite food scene in a movie?

Mine is most definitely when Sally (Meg Ryan) of When Harry Met Sally shows Harry (Billy Crysal) how women fake orgasms all the time while eating dessert in the cafe. And then the older lady lunching across the room looks at the waiter and says "I'll have what she's having."

The best Valentine's advice of all...

Link - Give good chocolate.

Sign up for a daily mood boost

These newsletters and cards offer smart advice - and they're FREE.

  • ChangingCourse.com - a twice-monthly career bulletin designed to help you find your calling, switch fields or be happy where you are.
  • DailyOm.com - Features calm- and creativity-inducing exercises and some wacky ideas too, of course. (Like invite magic into your world by creating a fairy garden.)
  • FollowYourDreams.com - Offers arty e-cards with inspiring quotes.

Drink of Love

Link - Drink of love all year long with these pretty glasses. "Amour" glasses by Kiss That Frog, $9 each, (415) 927-8884.

Food foreplay for Valentine's Day

Tantalizing your sweetie with sensuous treats is a great idea for Valentine's Day. The Aphrodisiac of the Month Club delivers arousing goodies such as almonds, ginger and chile peppers. (And save the first taste test for Valentine's Day!) The club was created by Master of Gastronomy Amy Reiley, a leading food and wine industry authority on sensual cuisine.

Five ways to pick heart-healthy chocolate

Excerpted from an article by Sarah Jio for Self magazine...

1. Scan for key words - Choose snacks that DO NOT list alkali or Dutch-processed cocoa in the ingredients. "Dutching" reduces flavonol content, which is the compound in chocolate that can lead to heart health.

2. Opt for dark chocolate over milk chocolate

3. Buy flavonol-friendly brands - The Mars corporation recently patented a process it claims protects flavonoids (flavonols and other compounds)

4. Make real hot cocoa with natural, unsweetened cocoa

5. Go to the source - Work cacao beans into your diet for a flavonol dose. The beans are often sold as "nibs," the shelled form.

And Sarah offers this cacao bean smoothie from chef David Wolfe of San Diego: Grind a handful of cacao nibs in a coffee grinder. In a blender, mix 1 tbsp ground nibs, 1 cup vanilla frozen yogurt, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 cup skim milk.

Three cocktails for Valentine's Day

Three to try on Valentine's Day:

Rose Royale - Place four candied rose petals in a Champagne flute. Add 1 1/2 tsp Shakers Rose Vodka and 2/3 cup chilled rose Champagne.

Pomegranate Mojito (from the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills): Combine 2 tbsp raw sugar, 1 tbsp fresh lime juice and 12 mint leaves in a tall glass; mash with back of spoon. Mix in 6 tbsp white rum and 1/4 cup pomegranate juice. Fill glass with ice. Top with splash of soda water.

ANNO 1960: Fill cocktail shaker with ice. Add 3 tbsp vodka, 1 1/2 tbsp dry vermouth and 1 1/2 tbsp Campari; shake well. Strain into a martini glass.

(From Bon Appetit, February 2005)

A T. Rex named Sue

The Mississippi Museum of Natural Science will host Sue - the largest and most complete Tyrannosaurus Rex ever unearthed from June 18 till September 11. Sue will be the centerpiece of an interactive paleontology exhibit.

Sue was discovered by fossil hunter Sue Hendrickson in 1990, near Faith, South Dakota. Sue stands 13 feet high at the hips and 42 feet long from head to tail.

The skeleton on display is the real thing. Not a plastic model or a plaster cast. Not a patchwork or composite of bones from different specimens.

Witness rare beauty

Witness: Endangered Species of North America features stunning photography by Susan Middleton and David Littschwager, who spent two years capturing some 100 species on film. The Witness photography exhibit will open at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science Feb. 24 and will run through May 29.

Live and mounted specimens of some of Mississippi's endangered species will intensify the exhibit experience.

3rd annual Wishmakers' Ball

The 3rd Annual Wishmakers' Ball benefiting The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Mississippi is hosting A Night of Stars on Feb. 26 at 7:30 p.m. at the Country Club of Jackson.

The cost is $50 per person for prepaid reservations or $60 per person the day of the ball. Call (601) 898-8538 or e-mail info@ms.wish.org to make your reservation. (Attire is dressy casual.)

The event offers a night of music, food and a silent auction to help make wishes come true. Entertainment will be provided by The Krackerjacks.

Calling all Sweet Potato Queens

The Everyday Gourmet is having a Sweet Potato Queen Party on March 18 from 4 p.m. till 6 p.m. St. Paddy's Parade visitors should check it out.

Thanking God for unanswered prayers

It's hard to understand what the WorldCom scandal meant to Mississippi personally if you're not from here. Obviously, it affected all investors worldwide, but I suspect it's kind of like 9/11 - you have a much different, more personal perspective if you live in New York City.

I have many friends who invested early and often in WorldCom back when Ebbers' only big client was USM, my alma mater. I have several friends and acquaintances that worked at WorldCom and some that still do. Most have now safely landed somewhere else, but it was a scary experience.

But all of that is secondary to the fact that Mississippians were very proud to have WorldCom headquarters in our backyard. We were finally on the news for something positive once in a while. And WorldCom convinced some of us that we didn't have to move to Atlanta or Dallas or Houston to make a decent living as a professional.

When the bubble burst here, it was much more than financial. It was like someone had died. It was shock, remorse, grief and anger.

And when it happened, I personally had one of those "Thank the Lord" moments. Years ago, before I accepted the job I have had for four years now, a job came open at WorldCom for a director of investor relations. For the first time in my life, I wanted THIS job - not a job, THIS job. And this was when WorldCom was (supposedly) at the top of its game. Being hired by WorldCom was an honor.

Besides sounding like a hell of a lot of fun, I suspected this job experience could open doors for me on a national level. (Where else in Mississippi could you find a PR job concentrating on investor relations?)

So I went to work. I researched the company. I made mock Flash applications for WorldCom investors showing how I could bring the company's IR program into the 21st century. (It was 1999, remember.) I e-mailed the examples to Scott Hamilton, who was hiring for the position.

And they called. I got an interview. But it was just with an HR generalist who didn't understand any of the acronyms on my resume (HTML, PERL, etc.). Not to be disheartened, I went to work trying to sell skills to someone who never quite got what I was talking about. I did not get a second interview and was very disappointed. (It physically felt like the rejection you would feel if you went no-holds-barred after a man who rebuffed your advances.)

But I got over it. And now consider myself EXTREMELY lucky for not landing a second interview or the job. I would have been the one taking all the phone calls from the Wall Street Journal asking for copies of financial statements. I would have been the one dealing with irate investors.

Moral of the story: Sometimes we should be thankful for unanswered prayers. Looking back over life, sometimes the things that aren't handed on us are just as important as the things that are.

Sky Showpiece: See Saturn and Titan

Link - With the bright Moon having departed the evening sky, this is the week to enjoy Saturn. Now located among the stars of Gemini, the ringed planet is readily visible as a yellowish-white "star" in the winter night sky.

We the People

Link - Men and women in the U.S.

'Lot's Daughters': Sodom and Lewinsky

Link - ''Lot's Daughters: Sex, Redemption, and Women's Quest for Authority'' is Polhemus's dispatch from the place he calls Daughterland, where Oedipus is irrelevant, his filial complex eclipsed by a sister condition, ''the Lot complex.''

Interesting...but it just doesn't have the same ring to it!

Taste for meat made humans early weaners

Link - A taste for meat prompted early humans to wean their children at a young age. The idea explains why we now wean our infants years earlier than other great apes.

70 things to say when you're losing a technical argument

1. That won't scale.
2. That's been proven to be O(N^2) and we need a solution that's O(NlogN).
3. There are, of course, various export limitations on that technology.
4. The syntax is idiosyncratic.
5. Trying to build a team behind that technology would be a staffing nightmare.

For the other 65...

Wikipes

Link - A global cookbook

Ronald McDonald, Chief Propaganda Officer

Link - So Ronald McDonald got promoted. He's now Chief Happiness Officer at McDonald's. Congrats, Ronnie! What a well-deserved promotion. And overdue too.

Lost purse is returned months later

Link - Who says chivalry is dead?

NASA Research Balloon Makes Record-Breaking Flight

Link - Flying near the edge of space, a NASA scientific balloon broke the flight record for duration and distance. It soared for nearly 42 days, making three orbits around the South Pole.

Mother's the word

Link - The 70 English words that came top in a survey of favourites conducted by the British Council. (OK, only in England would umbrella make the top 70 list. Any suggestions on what words would have been deleted - or added - on an American list?)

Here are mine...

I don't think "sweetheart" would make an American list. It sounds a bit old-fashioned now. (But please feel free to call me sweetheart any time - I personally like the word!)

Blue is a strange word to make the list. I like the color, but as a word standing on its own, there's not much poetry there. Same for cute and gum.

And, in America, Why would definitely have been on the list, I believe.

Should you decide to hold a real blogger dinner party...

Link - Should you decide to follow through on J-Walk's meme of the blogger dinner party, you could surprise your guests with a "star" invitee. (Just don't tell them that you had to pay for him or her to come to dinner, so you won't look pathetic.) I must confess I did not see one name on the "star" list I recognized right off. Either I'm a bit out of sync or this site is uing the term "star" rather loosely. Maybe it's because it's a UK address and they are all stars in England - so you better be willing to take your dinner party on the road.

Friday, January 28, 2005

Guess who's coming to dinner?

J-Walk Blog is attempting to start a meme here. Pick 10 bloggers that you've never met before but would love to "invite" to an imaginary blogger dinner party. Here are mine...

1. John Walkenbach. (I promise this isn't idle flattery, J-Walk.) His "stuff that may or may not interest you" is close to my "everything and/but nothing" stream of blogging consciousness ideals. And he seems funny, sincere and smart (in his blog anyway). He would make everyone laugh.

2. Paul Chaney. I've never met him in person before. (We are having lunch next Friday...I'll have to give you an update.) We've e-mailed and talked on the phone and just became fast friends. I'm looking forward to lunch at Vasilio's next week, Paul! He would make sure everyone met and visited with each other at the dinner party.

3. Steve Rubel. He seems to be knowledgeable without being arrogant. And he definitely wouldn't have any problem talking about blogging at the dinner party! He would make sure everyone talked about the larger implications of blogs.

4. Robert Scoble. How could you not like anyone with a subtitle of "Microsoft Geek Blogger"? And, again, he seems very smart without coming across as arrogant. He could talk to the group about technology (and the ever-continuing Microsoft vs. Apple saga). To make it especially fun, we could also invite his brother-in-law, who works for Apple. They obviously taunt each other often about this.

5. Halley Suitt. People will talk bad about me if I don't invite at least one female! And we could dance since she didn't get to at Scoble's birthday party. (Yes, Halley, some geeks do dance. Get your blue suede shoes on and we'll boogie down at my blogger dinner party.) Halley's sitting by me...and after the food is cleared away, we are going to make all of you dance! No excuses!

6. Big Jim. He was the first person to ever add me to his Blogroll. He'll always hold a special place in my heart. And he's a Mississippi boy so I know I'd be able to talk to him. (I like his "non-prophet organization" subtitle too!) We could talk about the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

7. Instapundit. I like his sense of humor. And, again, he seems to be very intelligent and successful without (much of ) a hint of arrogance. He could talk politics. (And he's my blogger twin.)

8. Rex Hammock. He's a magazine junkie like myself. And he seems to always have fun at work, which I admire. We could talk magazines!

9. Cathy. I would need a fellow foodie there - and she was very gracious when I submitted my first recipe for Is My Blog Burning? (I might even give her honorary Southern Belle status - just for the party at least!) We could talk food!

10. Todd. 800.CEO-READ blog recently allowed me to review Hugh Hewitt's new book, Blog. He asked for takers. I said I would do it. He sent me the book. I wrote the review. (Look for it on his site on Feb. 7.) Never met him, he doesn't know me...but I get to write my very first online book review as an "official" reviewer thanks to Todd. (You just gotta love the blogosphere!) OK, I know, he got a review for the price of the book, but it's the thought that counts. (And he could talk about the must-read business books of the year.)

Sumlin shares his rockin' recipes with guitar legends

Link - Howlin' Wolf was a big man, 6 foot 3 and "300 Pounds of Heavenly Joy," as he bragged in his 1963 blues classic. He was built like a linebacker and had a voice to match. Next to Wolf, for most of his last quarter-century, was a guitarist who looked small in comparison but who had a wild, big sound, Hubert Sumlin.

Bombproof Your Horse wins title fight

Link - Rick Pelicano and Lauren Tjaden's extremely serious manual on how to Bombproof Your Horse is today hailed as runaway winner of the prize for the oddest book title of the past year.

Hot rod KitcheAid

Link - OK, this is making my 6-qt professional candy-apple-red KitchenAid look tame. (And if I had this one I'd have to use car wax instead of Windex to buff it up!)

Third columnist caught with hand in the Bush till

Link - Michael McManus, conservative author of the syndicated column "Ethics & Religion," received $10,000 to promote a marriage initiative.

Introduction to videoblogging

Link - An introduction to videoblogging on the Blogger platform

Stennis center among three finalists for NASA contracts

Link - The John C. Stennis Space Center in Mississippi has made the finalist list for NASA's huge consolidated services center contract that would initially bring 500 jobs to southeastern Louisiana and the Gulf Coast area.

LSU experts say tiny pest hitting rice fields may be new to U.S.

Link - A tiny fly, possibly a species new to the United States, has been damaging some Louisiana rice fields, according to agriculture experts at the LSU AgCenter.

Adult dolphins won't leave calf behind in bayou

Link - After 24 hours of studying, assessing and measuring, researchers Thursday agreed that the dolphins in Mallini Bayou are for the time being stuck - or at least one of them is.

Mississippi reservists return home

Link - Jackson soldiers were part of unit that refused convoy order in Iraq last fall

Mississippi Coliseum Set to Host Extreme Championships Calf Roping Event

On Tuesday, February 1, ClearChannel will present the Miss 103 Watson Quality Ford Dixie National Challenge produced by XETC. A portion of the proceeds from the one-day event benefits the Blair E. Batson Hospital for Children at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. The Batson Hospital is Mississippi's only children's hospital, designed exclusively for the treatment of sick and injured children.

XETC, or extreme elapsed time championships, is a unique and exciting drag racing style calf roping competition that pits two World Class cowboys side by side in the same arena. There is over $55,000 in prize money up for grabs and the last man standing will win a $10,000 bonus.
The main event begins at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, February 1, and tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Preliminary rounds begin at 10 a.m. Tickets can be purchased at the Mississippi Coliseum box office, on line at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 601-353-0603 or 601-353-5252.

Rodeo superstars like five-time world champion and world record holder Cody Ohl will compete. Other international stars expected to participate include Blair Burk, Stran Smith, Clint Cooper and current world champion Monty Lewis. Competitors from Mississippi include former PRCA World Champion Herbert Theriot of Poplarville and 2004 World Junior Calf Roping Champion Wesley Brunson of Terry.

This nationally televised event will appear on The Outdoor Channel, with hosts Roy “the Super Looper” Cooper, eight-time World Champion; Pam Minnick and Jennifer Smith. Check your local listings for more details.

The Miss 103 Watson Quality Ford Dixie National Challenge is sponsored by Mossy Oak Brand Camo, Quicksilver Arenas, Horizon Casino Hotel of Vicksburg, Liberty Tractor, Z106 Radio, LOVECOMM Cable, Clear Channel, Miss 103, and Watson Quality Ford.

Overweight? Maybe You Just Don't Fidget Enough, Researchers Say

Link - Pacing and wriggling during the day can determine whether one is lean, study concludes.

The Global Baby Bust

Link - Most people think overpopulation is one of the worst dangers facing the globe. In fact, the opposite is true. As countries get richer, their populations age and their birthrates plummet. And this is not just a problem of rich countries: the developing world is also getting older fast. Falling birthrates might seem beneficial, but the economic and social price is too steep to pay. The right policies could help turn the tide, but only if enacted before it's too late.

Shroud of Turin: Old as Jesus?

Link - The Shroud of Turin is much older than the medieval date that modern science has affixed to it and could be old enough to have been the burial wrapping of Jesus, a new analysis concludes.

It Can Be Done: Scientists Teach Old Dogs New Tricks

Link - Old beagles, like old humans, act younger and smarter when they get the right diet and plenty of intellectual stimulation. A report published in the January issue of Neurobiology of Aging found that a diet rich in antioxidants combined with a stimulating environment slowed the canine aging process.

The Great American Toilet Paper Debate

Link - Help Declare a National Toilet Paper Hanging Way!!! Join the Great American Toilet Paper Debate and help settle this toilet paper hanging debate! This debate about whether the toilet paper should hang so the paper unrolls down the front or down the back has been going on since 1882 when toilet paper was first on the roll. Now you can vote for your way of hanging the toilet paper to be officially declared "The National Toilet Paper Hanging Way" and help settle this debate once and for all.

Hot Off the Web: Gossip and Design Guidance

Link - On a recent day, the cyberdesign world was buzzing. Bloggers at apartmenttherapy.com had discovered the mystery manufacturer of a hot paint color called Fresh Melon Green. Over at treehugger.com, bamboo coffins were the talk of the moment. A post at Design Sponge, meanwhile, praised ceramic bowls that double as wall sconces.

More on my deadly sins...

This was a follow-up from Tickle (I guess a last-ditch effort to convince me to buy my complete sin report.)

Shawn, you need to watch out for Pride

In ancient times, each of the seven deadly sins was thought to have a specific, corresponding punishment. The prideful person was broken on the wheel.


Not from Tickle, from other sources:

Associated symbols & suchlike: Pride is linked with the horse and the color violet.

2005 Pantone Color Trends

Link - Every year, Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute and noted color expert, presents forward-looking colors for the home and housewares industry to consider when designing new products.


Circa 1987: Kat and I at the Goofy Golf course in Biloxi. Posted by Hello


The first car I bought with my own money. $1,000. VW Bug. It broke down the first night I bought it (and many times afterwards). I've never been able to look at a VW the same since. Posted by Hello


Circa 1987: My little brother and I in a photo taken by Mike (http://sfmike22.blogspot.com) at my dad's old photo studio. Posted by Hello

I made it through my first week...

Well, I made it through my first week of 5 a.m. workouts as of today. I changed gyms because the YMCA had great 5:45 a.m. classes. (I can now take step aerobics three times a week and kickboxing twice a week - at my other gym there were only two morning classes I could take.)

But switching from an all-female gym to the Y has been interesting. In the weight room in the morning, I am literally the only female every morning. The guys have been nice and not made fun of me and my 12 pound weights, though. I'm still getting used to the new weight equipment - but I'll get there. (And it will take me a while to get used to the guys too after three years at Fitness Lady.)

And 5 a.m. is VERY EARLY for me, but it really hasn't been that bad. I have jumped right out of bed every morning. (I'm just dead tired by 8 p.m. And I'm very much looking forward to the weekend. I will NOT be attending any classes before 10 a.m.!)

Less sinful than the average person

Shawn, you're less sinful than the average person.

Still, your sinful tendencies are running just below the surface and could start to affect your choices in life. For example, if you aren't careful, your drive to excel at all costs may ultimately be your downfall. Feeling good about your successes might be a gratifying way to acknowledge your work and position in life. Still, you, in particular, should beware of prioritizing your achievements above other things and using them as a way to feel superior to others.

Though you're less sinful than others, this, and the sins you scored highest on can still jeopardize the things that are most important to you. Don't let them.

See which deadly sin you can't resister here. (Warning: This above is all you get unless you pay for the "full" 7 Deadly Sins Report.)

If you spring for the whole report, you get:

* Your scores on each sin
* How to use the 7 virtues to balance your sins
* The history behind the 7 sins

My iTunes purchases this week...

(OK, I was very bad. But I finally got my iPod Shuffle and JUST HAD to have some new music to play on it!) ;)

The Devlins – Headstrong
DJ Dean – Ballantion.04
Ellie Lawson – Gotta Get Up from Here (free song of the week)
Louis XIV – Finding Out True Love is Blind
Malente – Funk the Rich
Michael Buble – Home
Lifehouse – You and Me
50 Cent – Disco Inferno
Destiny’s Child – Lose My Breath
Eric Bibb – Kokomo
Albert Collins & The Icebreakers (Live) – I Ain’t Drunk
Randy Crawford – Rio de Janeiro Blue
Shaggy – Oh Carolina
The Church – Under the Milky Way
The Postal Service – Against All Odds
Collin Raye – That’s My Story
Emmylou Harris – Two More Bottles of Wine
Jim Morris – Let’s Talk Dirty in Hawaiian
Tori Amos – Sleeps with Butterflies
Shivaree – Fear is a Man’s Best Friend
Flaming Lips – Ego Tripping at the Gates of Hell
Ben Harper – Suzie Blue
Nanci Griffith – Listen to the Radio

Thursday, January 27, 2005

MSO annouces 2005 All-City Orchestra Festival Concert

The All-City Orchestra Festival concert will be presented February 15, 2005 at 7 PM at Murrah High School. The concert is free and open to the public. The High School Orchestra will be conducted by Professor Robert Blaine (Jackson State University). The Middle School Orchestra will be conducted by Professor Christopher Shelt (Belhaven College). The Elementary School Orchestra will be conducted by Stephanie Garrett (Jackson Public Schools). The orchestras consist of students enrolled in the string instruction program of Jackson Public Schools. Instruction is by members of the Mississippi Symphony Orchestra. Placement in these orchestras is determined by audition.

Read, Set, Saute: Cooks gear up for Taste of UMC

Link - With the Taste of UMC less than four weeks away, cooks are signing up to prepare their special dishes and give tasters the culinary adventures of a trip around the world all in the course of an evening. The event, set for 7 p.m. on Sat-urday, Feb. 19, at the Jackson Medical Mall Thad Cochran Center, is the major fundraiser for the UMC Alliance. Proceeds from previous events have helped pay for the interfaith chapel that will be housed in the new adult hospital scheduled for completion in 2005.

2nd annual Juke Joint Festival in Clarksdale on April 16

Link - At the 2nd annual Juke Joint Festival in Clarksdale on April 16, a wristband pass will allow visitors to sample the city's artists at a wide range of clubs.

21st Annual International Blues Challenge in Memphis

Link - The 21st IBC will be held Thursday-Saturday, February 3-5, 2005.

$10 wristbands will be for sale Thursday and Friday at the Beale Street venues and will get you into all participating IBC clubs. Tickets can be purchased at the door for other events including the Friday night jam with Deborah Coleman at the Cadre Bldg ($10), Solo/Duo Finals at the Center for Southern Folklore ($10) and the Band Finals at the New Daisy Theater ($15).

Larry Garner, Tommy Castro, Susan Tedeschi, Michael Burks, Michelle Wilson and Sean Costello have all come through the IBC over the years and everyone is familiar with the most recent winners, Richard Johnston, Delta Moon and Zac Harmon and the Mid South Blues Revue.

Over 90 acts compete for $25,000 in cash and prizes and the title of “Best Unsigned Blues Band” and “Best Unsigned Acoustic Act.” The judges also present the Albert King Award to the most promising guitarist. In addition to the long-standing live performance component of IBC, The Blues Foundation is for the first time presenting an award for the Best Self-Produced CD.

A list of all of the IBC participants is here.

Marathon team gives charity run for its money

Charities in Action (CIA) is a marathon team with plans to benefit a different charity each time they participate in a marathon. Don Williams, a veteran of over 40 marathons and a coach of more than 20, is the team coach.

Not all members are runners - many are walkers. The team has specific training programs and gets together every Saturday to train. The team is open to anyone interested. Beginners need to be able to walk eight miles. (And Williams says it takes about six months to get in shape for a marathon.)

Members pay their own expenses to all races and make individual contributions to the charity group they choose for each race.

The CIA plans to participate in the Feb. 27 Mardi Gras Marathon in New Orleans. Most members are walking a half-marathon. Other marathons being considered include the Flying Pig in Cincinnati and the Portland, Ore., and Medoc, France marathons.

For more information on the marathons or the CIA, call Don Williams at (601) 957-0900.

Pennies for Paws to raise funds for shelter animals

The Mississippi Animal Rescue League launches its Pennies for Paws fund raising on Feb. 1, a monthlong effort to collect coins that provide funds to clean, medicate and feed some of the 14,600 animals that come through the shelter annually. Last year, 14 schools and organizations raised over $6,500.

For information or to register for the fund raising, call Aileene Maldonado at (601) 969-1671 or aileenem@netdoor.com or call Jerry Williams at (601) 209-0173 or e-mail jerrywilliams@jam.rr.com.

Mardi Gras on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

Link - The Sun Herald's round-up of Mardi Gras parades and events on the Coast

Mark your calendar for three-day weekends in 2005

Almost all of the major holidays are being observed on Mondays this year. That means six three-day weekends (seven if you count New Year's Day 2006).

This odd calendar alignment will happen only 14 times this century. The only stubborn holiday is Thanksgiving, which is eternally stuck on Thursday. (But most of us get the following Friday off, so who cares?)

It's a Store. It's a School. It's a Playground for Cooks.

Link - Wine 101 and Wine 102 now offered at Viking Cooking School...and drinking in class is encouraged! ;)

Night shuttle service for MSU students begins

Link - Students at Mississippi State University and others in the community can now take in Starkville's night life without getting behind the wheel.

Ceremony held marking start of work on Hancock casino

Link - A groundbreaking ceremony this week marked the official start of construction on the Silver Slipper Gambling Hall and Saloon. In reality, work on the project is well under way. The casino is expected to open in November and will have 650 employees.

Book latest act in Hollywood manager's star-studded career

Link - Larry Thompson, a Mississippi native who has represented more than 200 stars including William Shatner, Cindy Crawford and Drew Barrymore, has put his observations into Shine (McGraw-Hill, $19.95), a new book that offers "a powerful 4-step plan to becoming a star in anything you do."

Bush Urges End to Contracts With Commentators

Link - President Bush said yesterday that federal agencies should stop awarding contracts to outside commentators as a Democratic lawmaker assailed the administration over the latest example and an advocacy group called for an investigation.

Two days of femininity

Link - The Isle of Man, sober home of tax exiles, Sir Norman Wisdom, and people who would prefer to live in 1958, is to go all silly at the weekend and rename itself the Isle of Woman. For two days, women will benefit from a pink bill of rights which will command men to wait on them hand and foot, lower the toilet seat after use and not complain when the phone is in constant use.

"Tonight Show" trivia

Courtesy of Mental Floss magazine:

* Myrtle Young was a former inspector from a potato chip factory in Ft. Wayne, Indiana. For many years, her hobby was collecting odd-shaped chips. She had chips in the shape of Mickey Mouse, Ziggy, and even Bob Hope's profile. When she proudly brought her fragile collection to "The Tonight Show," Ed McMahon momentarily distracted her and suddenly the audience heard a loud CRUNCH from Johnny Carson. A hush fell over the audience as Myrtle turned to Johnny in shock, her hand clutching her chest, mouth agape. Johnny let the joke play for a few moments before he revealed a bowl of potato chips he had behind his desk in preparation for the gag.

* In the earlier days of "The Tonight Show," sidekick Ed McMahon sometimes performed live commercials in between skits. One night, while promoting dog food, the "stunt dog" completely missed his cue and refused to come out on stage. Johnny saved the day by re-entering the stage on all fours, panting happily and even licking Ed's hand. His ad-lib comedy helped keep the spot from completely bombing.

* While trivia buffs know that Bette Midler was Johnny's last guest, this one might be a bit tougher. On October 2, 1962, it was legendary comedian Groucho Marx who introduced Johnny as the new host of the show, and then sat next to him as Carson's very first guest. Carson's first words were in response to the applause he received: "Boy, you would think it was Vice President Nixon."

* What happened if a guest on "The Tonight Show" cancelled at the last minute? Since the show was filmed on the NBC lot, chances were there would be some sitcom regular nearby to fill in, but on occasion, there was no one to be found. Enter Pete Barbutti, a cigar-chomping jazz pianist/comedian whose act included such shtick as playing the piano with his nose. He first appeared on "The Tonight Show" in the 1960s, and fellow guest Mel Tome was laughing so hard Johnny could hardly interview Pete. Barbutti eventually became the default "emergency guest" (he lived nearby and was willing) and logged over 60 appearances on the program.

* On March 28, 1974, "Tonight Show" staff writer Pat McCormick ran naked across the stage as Johnny was finishing his monologue. The episode did air, but with the lower half of McCormick's 300+lb body blacked out.

* In 1973, Congressman Harold Froehlich mentioned that the federal government was falling behind in getting bids to supply its toilet paper. "Tonight Show" writers jumped all over this, and Johnny mentioned in his monologue that America might soon be in the midst of a shortage of TP. The next morning, the public flocked to stores all over to buy up as much toilet paper as they could. It was all a joke, but Johnny apologized later to the many folks who had either made a special trip to be safe or else been stuck without because the lines were so long.

* The "Tonight Show" theme song wasn't written by Doc Severinsen, or even Tommy Newsom. The culprit was Canadian singer/songwriter Paul Anka. He'd had several hits in the early 60s, but the British Invasion pushed him out of the limelight, so he turned to songwriting. Anka suggested a tune he'd already written, called "It's Really Love." Under a deal made between the two of them, Anka and Carson were credited as co-writers of the song, meaning they each received $200 each time it was played, earning each of them well over $1 million during Johnny's 30 years on "The Tonight Show."

Holmes calls out Foreman

Link - Larry Holmes keeps poking at George Foreman to draw him out. After his first fight, he went home with only $63, and now hopes to make $20 million with Foreman. If not with George, Larry wishes to take a rematch with Evander Holyfield, or attempt to get younger fighters back in the ring like Hasim Rahman or Lennox Lewis.

Larry and “Big George” were scheduled to fight on January 22, 1999 - Foreman’s fiftieth birthday - but the fight was cancelled when time ran out on a contractual stipulation related to financing. (I think we need a little more explanation here. Does this mean they couldn't agree on the money, basically?)

(OK, I have to ask...if Holmes has a Ph.D. in common sense, as the story brags, how the hell did he go home with just $63 after the first fight? It must have been one of those mail-in Web universities.)

Conservative Talk Show Host For Sale

Link - Let the bidding begin (and with full disclosure this time).

Attack of the Killer Mimes

This BoingBoing link on self-defense with a walking cane or an umbrella brought back one of the most bizarre incidents of my teenage night life.

A large group of us had taken a road trip to New Orleans (if you grow up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast this happens at least twice a month) to get drunk somewhere else for a change. We had all had quite a bit to drink. We were having a good time, walking around the Quarter.

Lonnie, my (drunk) boyfriend at the time, was hellbent on getting a New Orleans mime to blink or move or something. I tired of this quickly and told him to come on. He wouldn't...so I just walked away and hung with the rest of the group.

About three minutes later, I hear a female scream "Richard!" at the top of her voice in what sounded like a panic state. I turn to look to see what the commotion is and I see New Orleans mimes flying from everywhere and beating the shit out of my boyfriend with sticks and umbrellas.

I was momentarily stunned. Then I burst out laughing because it was so damn funny. Then it was downright scary. So the guys from our group try to go up and find out what happened. It seems that my boyfriend, after not getting the mime to blink or move, decided that slapping her on the face would get her to move. (Hey, I was 18...don't be so judgmental! And he was quite drunk and probably not thinking very clearly.)

We finally calmed all of the mimes down. But Lonnie was pissed that we weren't defending him - that we were more concerned about the mimes - and he took off mad (and drunk). It was tempting to leave his ass in New Orleans, but we kept on looking for him anyway.

After searching for two hours without luck, the guys of the group decide they need to go by themselves. That we are slowing them down. They park us on a street corner and tell us not to leave so they don't have to go looking for us if they do find Lonnie.

So we stand there. And a limo comes up and asks us if we would like to come to a bachelor party. No thank you. They look really confused. Another limo, another invitation. We are thinking, "Damn, we must look hot tonight!" After the third invitation, the bouncer at the club on the corner says, "Girls, you are standing on the corner of Bourbon street - if you don't want a date, you need to step aside. You're confusing the hell out of these poor guys."

Needless to say, we were mortified. But the bouncer was very nice and watched out for us till the guys got back - without Lonnie. By this time, I'm way past curfew in my dad's new Mercury Cougar. I say, "Screw it...I'm going home, with or without Lonnie." We go back to the parking garage and he's been sitting there the whole time - obviously very concerned that we were going to leave him in New Orleans after he stormed off.

Moral of the story: No matter how drunk you get in New Orleans, NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER slap a mime. They will all beat the crap out of you with their sticks and umbrellas! And never use Lonnie's argument for slapping a mime with your girlfriend: I'm from New York - I didn't know she was real. (Needless to say we broke up shortly afterwards.)

Domestic trends to the year 2015

Link - Forecasts for the U.S.

Terrafly

Link - This free service allows you to "virtually" fly over the U.S. and view aerial and satellite images of just about any location. (Yes, even Jackson! I saw my house!)

World renowned literary archive secured for Scotland

Link - The John Murray Archive contains private letters, manuscripts and other correspondence from Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Sir Walter Scott, Benjamin Disraeli, Herman Melville, Charles Darwin, David Livingstone, Thomas Carlyle, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Edith Wharton, among others. It has been independently valued at £45 million but has been offered for sale to NLS at a reduced price of £31.2 million in order to keep the collection in the United Kingdom.

A Look At Other Video Search Tools

Link - Other video search tools, besides Google and Yahoo, available both for free and for a fee.

Win a year of passion from Godiva

Link - Win 52 pairs of Manolo Blahnik shoes and 52 boxes of Godiva chocolates

African-American History Month: February 2005

Link - A compilation of facts from the U.S. Census Bureau in honor of African-American History Month

Digital camera preview: What you'll see in the year ahead

Link - Consumer Reports spotted three major trends in digital cameras, based on what their reporters saw at the huge Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

September 11, 2001

Link - September 11, 2001 is an online documentary from the Library of Congress with "nearly 170 audio and video interviews, totaling 40 hours, with photos, drawings, written narratives and poems."

Chill, blogophiles; you're not the first to do what you're doing

Link - Take a pill, all you blogomaniacs. Blogs are fun. Blogs add a fascinating new element to public discourse. But blogs are another turn of history's wheel, not a radical departure.

Photographic essays

Link -
Misty Keasler's photographic essays range from quirky views of her east Texas extended family and Japanese love hotels to unsettling essays on orphanages and the Guatemala City dump.

Online Yellow Pages take you on virtual stroll

Link - The Yellow Pages are coming to life. Internet retailer Amazon yesterday introduced a new way of finding local business information online — with pictures.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Poultry research offers insight to human cancer

Link - Research from Mississippi State University on a disease in chickens that closely resembles Hodgkin's lymphoma in humans could provide better diagnosis and treatment for people who suffer with this cancer.

Mississippi music travels to Washington

Link - B.B. King and 3 Doors Down both played at inaugural events

Pottery Barn Kids recalls blankets

Link - Pottery Barn Kids is recalling about 92,000 chamois blankets because the decorative stitching can come loose, posing a strangulation hazard to a young child, the Consumer Product Safety Commission said Jan. 24.

Parimutuel Wagering Could Come To Mississippi Casinos

Link - Who knew that "parimutuel wagering" means betting on the horses? Not me!

Haunted Places in Mississippi

Link - Haunted sites around the state from the Coast to Oxford


Quentin and I at the (now defunct - see news item below) Hard Rock Beach Club at the Pearl River Resort & Casino's Geyser Falls Water Park. It's a shame it closed because it was the only sit-down restaurant at the park. I guess it's hot dogs and burgers only this summer! Posted by Hello


Water fight! (I'm sure I won.) And does anyone else remember these potato sack swim trucks, modeled by Lonnie here, that were quite the rage in the late 80s? (And you can also see that when my dad let me drive his old truck in the background he wouldn't let me take the tool rack off. Now how stylish can a girl look tooling around in that?) Posted by Hello

5th Circuit Rules in Rappers' Battle Over Phrase 'Back That Ass Up'

Link - As often happens in the hip-hop world, two rappers became embroiled in a dispute over who owned the rights to a song that utilized a popular phrase. And it took the musical ear of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to settle the matter.

(But how does the judge keep a straight face every day?)

1998 Chevrolet Corvette Wrist Watch Remote Control Car

Link - It drives, races, turns on a dime, zigs,zags and whips around curves-even climbs hills-all by a remote control wristwatch! Yes, this all-new remote controlled '98 Corvette' does everything a real 'Corvette' does...and is just as much fun to 'drive'. (And a good gift for guys of all ages for Valentine's Day, ladies!)

PBS launches NOVA scienceNOW, video segments online

Link - The PBS series Nova has a new series called Nova Science NOW that they describe as "[a] lens on the timeliest developments and most intriguing personalities in science and technology."

MSU booze loophole has lawmakers scrambling

Link - Apparently Mississippi State University thought it had found a loophole that would allow it to sell alcohol or have it openly consumed on tailgates during football season, but lawmakers were moving rapidly Tuesday to shut down the party. "The law now reads you can't have it on 'college campuses,'" said Senate Finance Chairman Tommy Robertson, R-Moss Point. "Since we now call them universities, one school has taken the position that it is not a college campus and is exempt."

NASA's accounting problems land it on GAO list

Link - NASA's ability to properly manage its long list of contracts continues to be a problem, according to a report released yesterday. The Government Accountability Office, which is essentially the investigative arm of Congress, once again included the space program on its list of "high-risk" areas within the federal government, although it did note progress.

Biloxi may get a new highway, too

Link - The Mississippi Department of Transportation plans to request proposals to begin design work for a north-south connector in Biloxi.

What Has Been Sirius Satellite Radio's Best Move?

Link - Sirius Satellite Radio, which ended its 2004 orbit with more than 1.1 million subscribers, today said its fourth-quarter loss widened to $261.9 million, or 21 cents per share, from $147.8 million, or 14 cents per share, a year ago. The silver lining to that black cloud: Quarterly revenue increased fivefold, boosted by holiday sales. As a result, Sirius has raised its 2005 year-end subscriber estimate to more than 2.5 million.

Pearl River Resort closes Hard Rock Beach Club

Link - The Hard Rock Beach Club, which featured swimming pools, tiki houses and a manmade beach, has been closed by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians.

(Hey, now maybe in 10 years my T-shirt will become a collector's item!)

Back Bay casino site goes for $3.5 million

Link - An 8.34-acre site on the Back Bay of Biloxi, which was to have been the location for the Acropolis Casino, has been sold for $3.5 million.

Earth Inc.'s Annual Report

Link - If planet earth were a corporation, what would its annual report to the shareholders look like? Not good, says professor Robert Costanza, director of the University of Vermont's newly formed Gund Institute for Ecological Economics. He and a multidisciplinary band of colleagues, along with Maurice Strong, the organizer of the original, 1992 Earth Summit, are getting ready to present the United Nations with "Earth Inc.," the planet's first report to shareholders.

Beau Rivage starts work on $30M golf course

Link - Work has begun on Beau Rivage's long-planned golf course on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The Fallen Oak course is expected to cost more than $30 million and should be completed early next year. It is being built on 510 acres next to the DeSoto National Forest on Mississippi 15.

Attorney: Ebbers lied to avoid ruin

Link - Prosecution, defense paint former WorldCom chief in different lights

Sirius, XM in merger talks?

Link - Newspaper says the satellite radio providers are eyeing antitrust concerns that could block a deal.

Amazon's Ratings Count After All

Link - Rush Limbaugh and Al Franken may have something in common, after all. In Amazon.com's vast customer review database, their books get as many raves as pans. And according to the research of Mikhail Gronas, an assistant professor at Dartmouth, that sells books.

The Gospel at Collonus

The Gospel at Colonus, a special production of Mississippi Opera, is coming to Thalia Mara Hall on Saturday, January 29, at 7:30 p.m.

The Gospel is a soulful retelling of a classical Greek tragedy with a Southern gospel beat. The dialogue comes directly from the Robert Fitzgerald translation of Sophocles' The Oedipus Cycle, primarily from his Oedipus at Colonus. The music, similar to an oratorio, is performed in the high-energy style of a Pentecostal religious service.

Gospel has played on Broadway (with Morgan Freeman in the role of Preacher), Philadelphia, Washington, D. C., and the Apollo Theater, to name a few.

Now it's in Jackson starring a host of the finest musical and dramatic talent our city has produced, including Tonea Stewart of In the Heat of the Night and A Time to Kill, jazz and operatic soloist Heather Clancy Allen, guitarist Vasti Jackson and numerous others. Gospel groups PurPose and Young Men in Christ back the lead singers, and rounding out the cast is a mass choir of more than 100 voices including the Mississippi Opera Chorus and the Mississippi Girl Choir.

Tickets range from $20 to $50, with discounts for seniors, students and groups of 11 or more. A special deep discount is available for groups of 50.

Call 1-601-960-2300 to order your tickets.

Video of Jobs introducing the Macintosh in 1984

Link - The Apple Macintosh turned 21 years old on Jan. 24 and as a birthday present, the long-lost video of its introduction by Steve Jobs has been posted to the web by TextLab on their weblog.

AOL shutting down newsgroups

Link - America Online yesterday confirmed that it will stop supporting access to newsgroups, a once-popular feature on the Internet that has since become overshadowed by message boards and blogs.

Photographs of London Underground Stations

Link - Cool photos that were shot in black and white and then colorized in Photoshop

'Braveheart' Becomes Role Model for Christian Men

Link - But what's a damsel to do if she's not in distress?

The Great Stargazer

Link - If you look up at the awesome Milky Way and smile about its billions and billions of stars, be grateful to Johnny Carson (1925 - 2005) for bringing the universe home through cathode ray technology, his vast talent and avid interest in astronomy.

Google and Yahoo Are Extending Search Ability to TV Programs

Link - Google and Yahoo are introducing services that will let users search through television programs based on words spoken on the air. The services will look for keywords in the closed captioning information that is encoded in many programs, mainly as an aid to deaf viewers.

Kodak Bets Old Strategy Can Go Digital

Link - For decades, Eastman Kodak thrived on a classic business model: sell lots of cameras at low prices to chalk up outsize profits on the inks, chemicals and papers used for making prints. That strategy collapsed as the digital revolution and foreign competitors pretty much destroyed Kodak's longstanding control of the photography business.

Drawing Lines in the Ebbers Trial

Link - The landmark trial of WorldCom's former CEO got off to a running start, with opening arguments laying out vastly divergent views

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Is My Blog Burning? (IMBB) 11

Thanks to My Little Kitchen for collecting the recipes this time. And the theme is beans...a lot of great recipes but I especially want to try the chicken chowder. (And it's even a Weight Watcher's recipe.) This was my first post for IMBB - thanks so much to the group for the warm welcome and the great recipes.

Fallen U.S. Porn King Goldstein Rebuilds with Bagels

Link -Talk about a mid-life career change! He spent a lifetime peddling smut and once had an $11 million fortune, but after losing everything and becoming just another homeless New Yorker, Al Goldstein is now happy pushing bagels instead of porn.

C-Level Surfing

Link - Favorite Web sites of CEOs and Celebrities (and, I guess, celebrity CEOs)

Memo to media establishment: Ignore blogs at your peril

Link - The bloggers aren't quite overrunning the newsroom, but they are engaging established media in keyboard-to-keyboard combat that's benefiting public discourse and making the journalism "franchises" more accountable.

Monday, January 24, 2005

Mississippi Inaugural 2005 pictures

Link - Courtesy of Magnolia Report

Teaser for Blues Divas program to air in Feburary

Link - A concert series taped at Ground Zero Blues Club last April will soon air throughout the state on Mississippi Public Broadcasting (MPB).

Biloxi Marine gives some for others who gave all

Link - George Higginbotham was the man of the hour, but his dedication will serve to honor the men and women of the century. He spent about $100,000 of his own money to build a Purple Heart Memorial to honor those from South Mississippi who were wounded or killed in combat. Nearly 2,000 people attended the memorial dedication in Glennon Park Saturday.


Circa 1987: You are going to have to look closely at this picture for the history. (And I have no recollection of why Mike and Shane, my shirtless little brother, were practicing archery in our back yard.) The little red truck in the extreme background was the first vehicle I drove as a teenager. The Fiat was my boyfriend's car (I loved that car!). And you can just see the tail end of Mike's burnt orange old car that I was squired around in to movies, plays and dinner a few times before he left for California. I swear I still spot the car sometimes in Biloxi. Posted by Hello

Longtime host of "Tonight Show" dies at 79

Link - Don't guess he'll be taking my blog suggestion now...

Finally - why women can't read maps

Link - Men frequently despair at women's map-reading skills - or rather their lack of them. Now scientists believe they have pinpointed the reason for this conflict between the sexes.

Web logs come of age as source of news

Link - The first inkling of blogging's bright future came in 2002, when masses of people created sites related to the invasion of Iraq.

Solving the Enigma of Kryptos

Link - What does it say about the Central Intelligence Agency that its agents can crack the secret codes of enemy nations but can't unravel a coded sculpture sitting outside their cafeteria window?

Blizzard Blogging

Link - Everyone's doin' it? Why don't you?

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Archives notes history of child nutrition programs

The recounting of children bringing live chickens to school for a special meal, and those chickens' subsequent demise, is just one of many stories recorded as part of an oral history project at the National Food Service Management Institute's Child Nutrition Archives.

The Ole-Miss based archives is home to oral histories and materials documenting programs in several states, including recent additions from Kansas and South Carolina. The center hopes to have 40 more interviews completed by December.

WebMD's Weight Control Health Center

Link - Weight loss would boost the health of 2 in 3 Americans - the number who are overweight. Find information here on weight loss, diets, and treatments such as weight-loss drugs and bariatric surgery. Plus, get daily dieting support in online support groups.

Dessert Wizard

Link - Did that hunk of cherry cheesecake really blow your diet? How many extra miles do you have to run? Forget the guesswork and the guilt: The dessert wizard reduces it to a science by calculating for you.

TrustWatch

Link - Before you exchange sensitive information online, check the security and the trustworthiness of the site with TrustWatch, a free service.

Ready, set, blog!

Link - The blogging phenomenon explained (with help and tips for beginner bloggers)

New Picasa 2 blog

Link - There’s a new blog at Blogspot from the team at Picasa, the image service that Google recently acquired. With the new release of Picasa 2, they have released a blog devoted wholly to it. Here's the feed if you want to add it to your reader.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

All-American Crockpot Chili

I adapted this recipe from Cooking Light's January 2003 issue. The original recipe was All-American Chili, but I made it All-American Crockpot Chili. And since it's definitely chili weather here, I thought I would share it with y'all.

6 oz hot turkey Italian sausage
2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
8 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb ground sirloin
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
2 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 can tomato paste
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp salt
2 bay leaves
1 can beef broth (or red wine, if you prefer)
2 28-oz cans diced tomatoes
1 15-oz cans dark kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese.

Fry the meat out and drain off the fat. Add all the other ingredients to the crockpot and cook on 1ow for 8-10 hours.

If you are cooking for someone who's stomach can't tolerate spicy foods you can eliminate the jalapenos and use 1 1/2 lb of sirloin instead of the spicy sausage. It still tastes great - just not spicy. And, in the spirit of Mardi Gras, here's a little lagniappe for you...All of these recipes were on the back of the cans and products that I used to make the chili.

- Spicy Apple Walnut Loaf
- Parisian Beef Stew
- Home Sweet Home Meatloaf
- Hearty Harvest Soup

Spicy Apple Walnut Loaf

From the back of Dixie Crystals old-fashioned dark brown sugar...

Spicy Apple Walnut Loaf

3 cups sifted all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cloves
3/4 cup shortening
1 cup plus 2 tbsp Dixie Crystals light brown sugar (of course), packed
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups shredded apple, peeled
3 tbsp cider vinegar, plus water to make 3/4 cup
3/4 cup chopped walnuts

Mix and sift flour, baking soda and spices. Cream shortening and sugar till light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. Stir in flour mixture, alternating with apples and vinegar liquid. Stir in walnuts. Turn into greased 11x4x2-inch loaf pan and bake at 350 F for 1 1/2 hours or till done. Cool on wire rack. Makes 1 loaf.

Parisian Beef Stew

From the back of Kroger-brand hearty beef broth - ready to serve...

Parisian Beef Stew

2 cups peeled baby carrots
1 1/4 lb boneless top-sirloin steak, cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and pepper
4 tbsp butter
2 pkgs (3.5 oz) fresh shitake mushrooms, stemmed and diced (about 4 cups)
3 green onions, sliced
1 tbsp plus 1 tsp dried thyme
2 cups red cooking wine
2 cups canned Kroger beef broth (of course)
Hot cooked noodles or rice (optional)

Cook carrots in saucepan of boiling, salted water for about 8 min., till tender. Drain well.

While cooking carrots, sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. Melt 3 tbsp butter in large skillet over med-hi heat. Saute beef till brown on all sides but still pink in center. Remove beef from skillet. Melt remaining tbsp of butter in same skillet and saute mushrooms and green onions for 5 min. or till vegetables are softened. Add 1 tbsp thyme, cooking wine and beef broth; increase heat and boil till sauce is reduced to two cups, scraping browned bits, about 25 min. Return beef and carrots to skillet, cooking for 1 min. to allow flavors to blend. Sprinkle with remaining thyme and salt and pepper to desired seasoning. Serve with noodles or rice. Serves 4.

Home Sweet Home Meatloaf

From the back of a Hunt's diced tomatoes with sweet onion can...

Home Sweet Home Meatloaf

1 lb lean ground beef
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup plain bread crumbs
1 can Hunt's diced tomatoes with sweet onion (of course), drained
Non-stick cooking spray
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 8-oz can tomato sauce

Combine first four ingredients until well mixed; set aside. Line a lipped-baking sheet with foil. Coat with non-stick cooking spray. Form meat mixture into loaf.

Blend sugar into tomato sauce; set aside.

Bake meat loaf in pre-heated oven at 400 degrees F for 30 min. Remove from oven, pour tomato mixture over top. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees F, bake an additional 25-30 min., or till no longer pink. Cool for 10 min. before serving.

Visit the Hunt's Club for more recipes.

Hearty Harvest Soup

From the back of a can of Hunt's diced tomatoes with roasted garlic...

Hearty Harvest Soup

8 oz. Italian sausage links, casings removed
1 med. onion
2 cans chicken broth
1 can Hunt's diced tomatoes with roasted garlic (of course)
1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1 pkg (6-9 oz) washed baby spinach

Cook sausage and onions in a 6-qt saucepan over med-hi heat about 10 min. or till sausage is crumbled, browned and no longer pink and onions are soft; drain fat.

Add broth, tomatoes and beans; cook 5 min.

Stir in spinach. Cover; cook about 5 additional minutes or just till spinach wilts. Serve.

For more recipes, visit the Hunt's Club.

10 Things Archive

Link - 10 things about hundreds of things at SmartMoney.com

Google Dramatically Increases Word Limit

Link - ResearchBuzz is reporting that Google has raised their previous 10 word search limit to 32. That's quite a leap.

My attitude (according to BlogThings anyway)





How Your Attitude Ranks


Your Attitude is Better than 85% of the Population


If you scored...

80-100: You've got a winner attitude. You're always optimistic and cheery. Your personality will get you far in life.

60-79: You have a good attitude. While a realist, you do see the positive side of most things. People love to be around you.

40 - 59: You have a positive attitude... somtimes. You prefer to see the world through clear glasses, not rose colored ones.

20 - 39: You have an average attitude. You take the good and bad in life as they come. Though sometimes you could use a little more good.

0-19: You have a negative attitude. You tend to see the dark side of every situation. Free ice cream? No thanks, it will just make you fat!




Salzburg Festival to produce all of Mozart's operas and musical theatre works

Link - The Salzburg Festival will produce all 22 of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's operas and musical theatre works next year in a marathon 250th birthday present to the Austrian musical genius, organizers said Thursday.

Navy cutting pilot training by 13 percent

Link - The Navy is cutting back pilot training because of high retention and low attrition rates and the looming retirement of some aircraft, including the last of its F-14 Tomcat fighters of "Top Gun" fame, officials said Friday.

Cameras likely to stay in Mississippi courts

Link - High Court backs its initial ruling

Miss. Air Guard members play key role in tsunami relief efforts

Link - The U.S. military has delivered more than 8,600 tons of relief supplies to areas of Asia affected by last month's tsunami.

Are You a Cooperator, a Reciprocator or a Free Rider?

Link - Personalities can make or break a group, and now researchers may know why. It all comes down to three personalities -- cooperators, free riders, and reciprocators.

Food bloggers chronicle their delicious obsessions

Link - They're known as FatMan Seoul, tastee, Splendid Spatula, and Sal Monella. And they like to hang out in places like the Accidental Hedonist, Hungry Tiger, and Food Porn Watch. Sometimes they chime in with a comment, but mostly they just like to watch. Or read. Or pretend they're eating.
They're not sexual deviants but ''food bloggers." And the websites and weblogs they visit, create, and update on a daily basis all share a single fetish -- for food, with a capital ''oo."

Finger-clickin' good

Link - Web logs help whet the appetite of food lovers

Writer McLarty Scores After Years in Basement

Link - I wanted to read The Memory of Running after reading about the book in Bookmarks. But now I think maybe reading a biography about the author might be just as entertaining. His tale about going to a therapist to try to stop writing is hilarious. (It could be a great movie too - or at the very least a great Larry David Show episode!) And his run-in with Stephen King (and King's assistance later) shows how much of success is out of our hands and completely random.

No ruling in Blogging v. Journalism

Link - Interesting article about the differences between bloggers and journalists not many have talked much about - journalists get paid. Mitch Ratcliffe says the difference is not about trust or truth or ethics - it's economics, pure and simple.

Bloggers are beating the crap out of journalists, because bloggers are giving away what writers used to be paid to produce. That doesn’t mean bloggers are going to win the market, because there have been plenty of industries assailed by the price-busting assault of massive commoditization. It does mean that journalists—all writers—are being pressed to come up with new and better ways to get their work into the market. It means that the centers of mass media distribution are melting like centrally heated igloos—the infrastructures are simply too big.