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Category: Who Knew



March 29, 2010

Glenn Beck on the Attack

I think you'll agree... With this attack, Glenn Beck has finally crossed the line:

Category: Who Knew



March 8, 2009

Cedric's Flat Stanley Arrives in Laguna Beach

flatstanleysmall.jpgExactly one year after Vietnam banned ownership of pet hamsters, Flat Stanley (a.k.a. Stanley Lambchops), arrived in Laguna Beach, California, to help southern Californians usher in daylight-saving time and prepare for the imminent switch to the DF (Digital Food) format. Flat Stanley, who was encouraged to virtually visit Laguna Beach by Cedric's Uncle Joe, immediately encouraged the town's residents who have not yet made the transition to the more advanced form of sustenance to do so as soon as possible, while at the same time reminding everyone who failed to do so the night before to set their clocks ahead by one hour.

"The only thing Lagunatics who currently rely on analog foods will need is a digital converter box, which you can purchase at any grocery store," Stanley said at a press conference, adding that every Laguna household is eligible for a $40 coupon to digitize its entire pantry. "Digital Format offers higher texture quality and better taste, as well as multiple spice choices and interactive capabilities. I must stress, however, that after the deadline you will no longer be able to eat your current food."

On the heels of Flat Stanley's visit to this little sea side town boasting one art gallery for every resident, President Obama announced his intention to urge the U.S. Senate to pass legislation that would require all food to be completely wireless by 2015.

Legend has it that Flat Stanley became flattened by an "enormous bulletin board while he lay in bed one night. Among other things, he soon discovers that due to his flatness he can easily be put into an envelope and mailed virtually anywhere."

Request: If you have your own Web site or blog, please help facilitate Flat Stanley's virtual journey around the Web. You can right-click the Flat Stanley image above and save it to your computer or simply link to it here. If you'd like a larger copy to download and take photos with as Flat Stanley visits you, the larger version is available at http://joekraynak.com/images/flatstanley.jpg. If you post Flat Stanley on your blog or Web site, please come back and post a comment to let us know where we can find him.

Category: Who Knew



November 13, 2008

Countdown's Keith Olbermann (and I) Speak to Opponents of Gay Marriage

The following commentary -- almost word-for-word -- has been running through my head since last Tuesday's election. I know it's a cliche but honestly, from the depths of my heart and soul, I couldn't state how I feel (about the right for gay couples to marry and how the majority of Californians voted on Proposition 8) any better than as follows:

Comments are open... I'm not afraid of what people have to say on this subject. If you disagree with me and Keith Olbermann, by all means, respond and let's keep the dialogue going! And if you agree, be brave enough to leave a comment to that effect as well.

Posted by Mikal at 11:24 AM | Comments (27) | TrackBack

Category: Who Knew



August 11, 2008

52 Questions Answered

Swiped from Fleur de Lisa, because I want to catch her attention so she'll answer my Four For Friday questions on her blog!

  1. What is in the back seat of your car right now? Technically, I have no idea what's "in" the back seat of my car (were I to guess I'd say some sort of foam padding). On the back seat in my car... nothing. Sitting on the floor directly behind the driver's seat (now we're talkin')... a brown paper bag waiting for my next trip to the grocery store!
  2. When was the last time you threw up? A few months ago, I think.
  3. What's your favorite curse word? I do not have a favorite but do enjoy the occasional F-bomb. "Son of a" (said just like that is also fun).
  4. Name three people who made you smile today. Rod, Jerry, and Ja Ja (Ja Ja's a dog, and dogs are people too).
  5. What were you doing at 8 am this morning? Working.
  6. What were you doing 30 minutes ago? Not working.
  7. What will you be doing 3 hours from now? Falling asleep on my couch, convincing myself that I will still be sleepy if I would just get up slowly and move to the bedroom.
  8. Have you ever been to a strip club? Yes.
  9. What is the last thing you said aloud? "Oaky, later then!"
  10. What is the best ice cream flavor? Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.
  11. What was the last thing you had to drink? Water (Arrowhead).
  12. What was the last thing you ate? Handful of Tim's Cascade Snacks' Hawaiian Kettle Style Sweet Maui Onion Potato Chips.
  13. Have you bought any new clothing items this week? I refuse to buy clothes until I lose some weight (and yes, I see the irony when balanced against the Sweet Maui Onion Potato Chips).
  14. When was the last time you ran? The Thursday before last, while playing tennis with Travis Whitney.
  15. What's the last sporting event you watched? The Men's 4x100 meter race (swimming) at the Olympics.
  16. Who is the last person you emailed? Work-related (confidential, sorry).
  17. Ever go camping? Yes.
  18. Do you have a tan? Being in southern California, one would think I would be tan, but not so much. Only on the tops of my feet, in between the straps of my flip-flops.
  19. Do you drink your soda from a straw? Only when offered one.
  20. What did your last IM say? Work-related (again, cannot share).
  21. Are you someone's best friend? Yes.
  22. What are you doing tomorrow? Working and then sharing a meal with my friend Bill.
  23. Where is your Mom right now? At a cozy little Inn in Vermont.
  24. Look to your left, what do you see? A wall of closets.
  25. What color is your watch? I stopped wearing a watch (it seems that the cell phone is the new watch).
  26. What do you think of when you think of Australia? My trip there in 1997.
  27. Would you consider plastic surgery? Yes, I would consider it.
  28. What is your birthstone? I do not know.
  29. Do you go in at a fast food place or just hit the drive thru? It depends on the fast food joint. If I know the menu cold, it's drive-thru all the way (unless it's too busy). However, honestly, I don't do fast food that much these days.
  30. How many kids do you want? I am undecided... between none and maybe (just maybe) more than none.
  31. Do you have a dog? I do not, but I do have a new neighbor and he has a dog (Ja Ja).
  32. Last person you talked to on the phone? Confidential (work-related).
  33. Have you met anyone famous? I'm sure I have but not anyone who I think would remember me. In order to say I met someone, I have to feel like they "met" me too; meaning, we would remember meeting were we to meet again.
  34. Any plans today? Just a trip to the grocery store later tonight. That's about all. I worked all day today (pretty normal for a Monday).
  35. How many states have you lived in? Nine (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, New Hampshire, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Utah).
  36. Ever go to college? Yes.
  37. Where are you right now? In my house.
  38. Biggest annoyance in your life right now? Not going there (that sort of stuff is just negative and never gets you anywhere).
  39. Last song listened to? "Stealing Cinderella" by Chuck Wicks.
  40. Are you allergic to anything? I have food intolerances (not "allergies" per se)... Splenda, MSG, and Cilantro.
  41. Favorite pair of shoes you wear all the time? Right now, it would have to be my flip-flops.
  42. Are you jealous of anyone? Not so much.
  43. Is anyone jealous of you? That I doubt very much.
  44. What time is it? 6:26 p.m.
  45. Do any of your friends have children? Yes.
  46. Do you eat healthy? Not so much.
  47. What do you usually do during the day? Work.
  48. Do you hate anyone right now? No way.
  49. Do you use the word 'hello' daily? Indeed, I do.
  50. How old will you be turning on your next birthday? Forty-three on September 19.
  51. Have you ever been to Six Flags? Yes, to the one in New Jersey when I was a kid.
  52. How did you get one of your scars? Attempting to slice a piece of bread from a frozen loaf (in the absolutely stupidest manner known to no man but me).

Category: Who Knew



August 6, 2008

TV Cartoon History: The Ant and the Aardvark!

If you're from my generation or beyond, you probably grew up watching a cartoon featuring an ant and an aardvark. Wikipedia informs me that the cartoons I'm referring to were produced between 1969 and 1971, which made me around 5-years-old when these hilarious skits hit my television screen.

Earlier today, a dear friend sent a link to The Ant and the Aardvark, which is now available on YouTube. Seriously, I cannot get enough of this stuff:

Where have all the good cartoons gone? Apparently, onto YouTube!

Category: Who Knew



August 3, 2008

Answers to 29 Questions

Meagen Ridley tagged me with the following questions. Enjoy!

  1. What time did you wake up this morning? 9 a.m.
  2. What do you usually have for breakfast? Turkey Wrap from Trader Joe's, blueberry breakfast bar (also from TJ's), and some water.
  3. What is your favorite CD at the moment? Scrubs - Original Television Soundtrack (various artists).
  4. What kind of car do you drive? 2008 VW Jetta.
  5. Favorite item of clothing? Short sleeve shirts from Quicksilver
  6. If you could go anywhere on vacation where would you go? Vancouver, British Columbia in the fall.
  7. What color is your bathroom? One is white, the other white with teal'ish tiles.
  8. Where would you retire? Right now I couldn't tell you but I know it won't be Florida or Arizona.
  9. Most memorable birthday? My 40th!
  10. Favorite sport to watch? Football (both college and pro).
  11. Are you a morning person or a night person? Morning, 100% of the time.
  12. Shoe size? 12.5
  13. Pets? None, and I would love to have a dog (no, three or four dogs), and a couple of cats also.
  14. What did you want to be when you were little? A Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus clown, architect, and the general manager of a 4- to 5-star resort hotel.
  15. What is your favorite candy? Peanut M&Ms.
  16. What is your favorite flower? The Lilium "Stargazer" (the Stargazer lily).
  17. What is a day on the calendar that you are looking forward to? Thursday, November 27, because it's Thanksgiving and for me it signifies the start of the holiday season.
  18. What are you listening to right now? Sound from a nearby television.
  19. What is the last thing you ate? Breakfast.
  20. Who was the last person you spoke to on the phone? My Aunt Irene who I'm going to pick up in a few minutes and take to a local art festival.
  21. Celeb hair you covet? Uhh, I got nothing.
  22. One of your favorite school teachers? 12th Grade - Mr. Ken Shannon.
  23. When was the last time you cried? A few weeks right toward the end of the movie "Anywhere But Here."
  24. What did you do last night? Hung out with an out-of-town houseguest (we went to another local art festival and then met a neighbor and her fiancée at a local restaurant/bar for drinks and dancing - neither the fiancée or I danced... we held purses and jackets while others danced).
  25. Favorite smell? Fresh cut grass and freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.
  26. What are you afraid of? Dying.
  27. How many cities have you lived in? I'm going to take "cities" to mean "towns" and/or cities... 15.
  28. How many kids do you want? Undecided (somewhere between none and maybe more than none).
  29. If I were a billionaire I would? Give millions and millions away to significantly worthwhile people and causes and seriously rethink the whole kid issue.
Posted by Mikal at 12:34 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Category: Who Knew



April 22, 2008

AL QAEDA CHIEF SLAMS MUSLIMS FOR LACK OF SUPPORT

Is it just me or does this headline and story read like it was written by the staff of The Onion? From the pages of Aljazeera.com:

AL QAEDA CHIEF SLAMS MUSLIMS FOR LACK OF SUPPORT

Al-Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri criticised Muslims for failing to support Islamist insurgencies in Iraq and elsewhere in a new audiotape posted Tuesday on the Internet. Osama bin Laden's top lieutenant also blasted Palestinian Islamist movement Hamas over their reported readiness to consider a peace deal with Israel. "I call upon the Muslim nation to fear Allah's question (at judgement day) about its failure to support its brothers of the Mujahedeen (holy Warriors), and (urge it) not to withhold men and money, which is the mainstay of a war," he said

It's hard not to find humor in that story. Not nearly as clever as "Baggage-Handling Mix-Up Sends Dirty Bomb To St. Louis" or "Howard Stern Organizes Women's Health Symposium," but pretty damn close.

Posted by Mikal at 3:25 PM | TrackBack

Category: Funny



February 18, 2008

IMPROV EVERYWHERE IN GRAND CENTRAL STATION

I'm not exactly sure when this occurred, but recently, about 200 people from an improv group called Improv Everywhere came to a complete halt in New York City's Grand Central Station for five minutes, amusing some while others apparently didn't even notice. From Improv Everywhere's blog:

On a cold Saturday in New York City, the world's largest train station came to a sudden halt. Over 200 Improv Everywhere Agents froze in place at the exact same second for five minutes in the Main Concourse of Grand Central Station. Over 500,000 people rush through Grand Central every day, but today, things slowed down just a bit as commuters and tourists alike stopped to notice what was happening around them. Enjoy the video...

Click on the play arrow below!

Two words: Absolutely Brilliant!

Thanks to Steve Lindhorst of GenuineSeller.com for the find.

Category: Who Knew



September 12, 2007

THE PALE BLUE DOT

I wonder how many people have seen this (kudos to Byrne at Majordojo for making this available):

From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest, but for us it's different. Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives.

The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there--on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.

The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that, in glory and triumph, they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot.

Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner. How frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds.

Our posturings, our imagined self-importance; the delusion that we have some privileged position in the Universe, are challenged by this point of pale light.

Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark.

In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves.

The Earth is the only world known so far to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand.

It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.

- Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot, 1994

Carl Sagan (1934 1996) was an astronomer who truly championed astronomy, astrophysics, and other natural sciences. He also promoted the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence (SETI) and gained world-fame for writing popular science books and for co-writing and presenting the award-winning 1980 television series Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, which is said to have been seen seen by a half-a-billion, making it the most widely watched PBS television program in history.

Category: Who Knew



August 30, 2007

THE SEE-THRU BATHROOM

As a follow-up to last week's "Four For Friday" question about using a public toilet that is entirely encased in one-way glass, here is the image so many of you asked about:

mikals_obsession.jpg

P.S. If you stumbled upon this blog entry and do not know what the above image refers to, see "Q2" from the entry below.

Category: Who Knew



June 25, 2007

STATE GROSS DOMESTIC PRODUCT COMPARED TO COUNTRY GDPs

The creator of this map broke down U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) into the GDPs of individual states, and then compare those to other countries' GDP (click on the image for a larger view).

Country_GDP_StateMap.jpg

From StrangeMaps:

Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is a convenient way of measuring and comparing the size of national economies. Annual GDP represents the market value of all goods and services produced within a country in a year. Put differently:

GDP = consumption + investment + government spending + (exports imports)

Although the economies of countries like China and India are growing at an incredible rate, the US remains the nation with the highest GDP in the world and by far: U.S. GDP is projected to be $13,22 trillion (or $13.220 billion) in 2007, according to this source. That is almost as much as the economies of the next four (Japan, Germany, China, UK) combined.

The creator of this map has had the interesting idea to break down that gigantic U.S. GDP into the GDPs of individual states, and compare those to other countries GDP. What follows, is this slightly misleading map misleading, because the economies both of the U.S. states and of the countries they are compared with are not weighted for their respective populations.

Pakistan, for example, has a GDP that is slightly higher than Israels but Pakistan has a population of about 170 million, while Israel is only 7 million people strong. The U.S. states those economies are compared with (Arkansas and Oregon, respectively) are much closer to each other in population: 2.7 million and 3.4 million.

And yet, while a per capita GDP might give a good indication of the average wealth of citizens, a ranking of the economies on this map does serve two interesting purposes: it shows the size of US states economies relative to each other (California is the biggest, Wyoming the smallest), and it links those sizes with foreign economies (which are therefore also ranked: Mexicos and Russias economies are about equal size, Irelands is twice as big as New Zealands).

Here is a run-down of the 50 states, plus DC:

  1. California, it is often said, would be the worlds sixth- or seventh-largest economy if it were a separate country. Actually, that would be the eighth, according to this map, as France (with a GDP of $2,15 trillion) is #8 on the aforementioned list.
  2. Texas economy is significantly smaller, exactly half of Californias, as its GDP compares to that of Canada (#10, $1,08 trillion).
  3. Florida also does well, with its GDP comparable to Asian tiger South Koreas (#13 at $786 billion).
  4. Illinois Mexico (GDP #14 at $741 billion)
  5. New Jersey Russia (GDP #15 at $733 billion)
  6. Ohio Australia (GDP #16 at $645 billion)
  7. New York Brazil (GDP #17 at $621 billion)
  8. Pennsylvania Netherlands (GDP #18 at $613 billion)
  9. Georgia Switzerland (GDP #19 at $387 billion)
  10. North Carolina Sweden (GDP #20 at $371 billion)
  11. Massachusetts Belgium (GDP #21 at $368 billion)
  12. Washington Turkey (GDP #22 at $358 billion)
  13. Virginia Austria (GDP #24 at $309 billion)
  14. Tennessee Saudi Arabia (GDP #25 at $286 billion)
  15. Missouri Poland (GDP #26 at $265 billion)
  16. Louisiana Indonesia (GDP #27 at $264 billion)
  17. Minnesota Norway (GDP #28 at $262 billion)
  18. Indiana Denmark (GDP #29 at $256 billion)
  19. Connecticut Greece (GDP #30 at $222 billion)
  20. Michigan Argentina (GDP #31 at $210 billion)
  21. Nevada Ireland (GDP #32 at $203 billion)
  22. Wisconsin South Africa (GDP #33 at $200 billion)
  23. Arizona Thailand (GDP #34 at $197 billion)
  24. Colorado Finland (GDP #35 at $196 billion)
  25. Alabama Iran (GDP #36 at $195 billion)
  26. Maryland Hong Kong (#37 at $187 billion GDP)
  27. Kentucky Portugal (GDP #38 at $177 billion)
  28. Iowa Venezuela (GDP #39 at $148 billion)
  29. Kansas Malaysia (GDP #40 at $132 billion)
  30. Arkansas Pakistan (GDP #41 at $124 billion)
  31. Oregon Israel (GDP #42 at $122 billion)
  32. South Carolina Singapore (GDP #43 at $121 billion)
  33. Nebraska Czech Republic (GDP #44 at $119 billion)
  34. New Mexico Hungary (GDP #45 at $113 billion)
  35. Mississippi Chile (GDP #48 at $100 billion)
  36. DC New Zealand (#49 at $99 billion GDP)
  37. Oklahoma Philippines (GDP #50 at $98 billion)
  38. West Virginia Algeria (GDP #51 at $92 billion)
  39. Hawaii Nigeria (GDP #53 at $83 billion)
  40. Idaho Ukraine (GDP #54 at $81 billion)
  41. Delaware Romania (#55 at $79 billion GDP)
  42. Utah Peru (GDP #56 at $76 billion)
  43. New Hampshire Bangladesh (GDP #57 at $69 billion)
  44. Maine Morocco (GDP #59 at $57 billion)
  45. Rhode Island Vietnam (GDP #61 at $48 billion)
  46. South Dakota Croatia (GDP #66 at $37 billion)
  47. Montana Tunisia (GDP #69 at $33 billion)
  48. North Dakota Ecuador (GDP #70 at $32 billion)
  49. Alaska Belarus (GDP #73 at $29 billion)
  50. Vermont Dominican Republic (GDP #81 at $20 billion)
  51. Wyoming Uzbekistan (GDP #101 at $11 billion)

Category: Who Knew



March 18, 2006

A FRIEND EXPERIENCING HIS GRANDMOTHER'S DEATH

A very dear friend sent the following message just a few hours ago. It contains so many great thoughts that I didn't want to keep it myself, and since I want to be able to come back to it at some point in the future and read it again, it gets posted here.

Hi Mikal

It's really late... after 1AM, but we are all on "death watch". Pretty much the entire family is here at my aunt's house. We've gone from praying, to eating, to making coffee, to sitting with her, to praying, to napping, and on and on and on.

She seems restful and at peace, unable to talk, open her eyes, or move (except for the occasional involuntary movements). We're anticipating just some hours from now she'll pass peacefully. It's actually been a very real, pronounced, and eye-opening experience to watch death so close and personal. While I was not present for my father's nor my grandfather's death, I thought I understood the process. Far from it... we never understand it. Only those entering and ultimately passing through it understand. Seems we can speculate and surmise what the process is like or will be from observation, interaction, or impressions, but there is a real lack of words and cognitive realization to express this process.

Each death is so unique, and so alone! The withdraw from the world around them as they enter inside themselves where there is sorting out, evaluating one's self and one's life. But inside, there is only room for one!

Eyes closed, in deep sleep is where the important work is done, on a level outsiders aren't aware of. Words are no longer necessary to communicate, because it only serves to keep them in this physical world, one they are trying to leave. Talking with loved one's that have died before them, they are no longer grounded to this earth. As death approaches, one last surge provides them with the spiritual energy to move on... then finally, the last breaths give rise to their chest, and as they exhale, their done... gone.

So simple, so elegant... the cycle of life is complete.

Category: Who Knew



February 25, 2006

APPARENTLY, I'M RELATED TO MOHAMAD KAMAL YASSER

According to an e-mail message I just received, it was recently discovered that I stand to inherit $13.5 Million from a distant relative... a chap named Mohamed Kamal Yasser who died in a tragic plan crash. Think I'm making this up? No way. Here's the e-mail message where it very clearly explains the entire situation:

FROM THE DESK OF STEVEN LEE

URGENT INHERITANCE CLAIM

I know this proposal will come to you as a surprise especially when you do not know the writer, considering the huge sum of money involved which could make any apprehensive. Let me start by introducing myself to you.

I am Steven Lee, the head of accounting department of my bank, where am presently working. I saw your contact during my private search at the information centre here in my country chamber of commence and industry and i want to believe that you will be very honest, committed and capable of assisting in this business venture.

Firstly, let me explain the source of this funds and what you are expected to do. A foreigner late Mohamed Kamal Yasser, oil merchant/contractor, until his death, over the past years ago, was a victim of an Egyptian airline flight 990 plane crash.

The deceased, Mohamed Kamal Yasser, banked with us and has a closing balance as a July 2000 worth $45m (forty five million USD). Which my bank, now expects a next-of-kin to claim as the beneficiary of the funds, efforts has been made by my bank directors to get in touch with the Mr. Mohamed Kamal Yasser's Family or relative but to no success based on the perceived possibility of not being able to locate Mohamed Kamal's next-of-kin, the management under the influence of our chairman and the board of directors are making arrangements for the funds to be declared unclaimed and channeled to an unknown account.

It is based on this that we have contacted you to stand as the next-of-kin of late Mohamed Kamal Yasser so that the funds will be released and paid into your account as the beneficiary and the next-of-kin to the deceased.

All documents, and proof to enable you get the funds have been carefully worked out as we have secured from the different offices concerned for the smooth transfer of the fund to your nominated account.

It has been agreed that the owner of the account will be compensated with 30% of the remitted funds, while we keep 65% and 5% will be set aside to offset expenses both locally and international.

If this proposal satisfies you, please reach me through my direct email address for more information and also send me your contact telephone and fax number including your cell phone number for quick and easy communication.

I await your urgent response, all the best and god bless you.

Yours faithfully,

Steven Lee.

First of all, my Uncle Yasser is not dead. He's right here, sitting on my couch, reading Al Franken's latest book, The Truth, With Lies, while sipping on a diet Pepsi with ice (he just loves visiting the United States).

But seriously, is there actually a human being alive today who would fall for a scam like this? I suppose the sad reality is that there is, otherwise scammers and fraudsters wouldn't be taking the time to mail millions and millions of copies of fraudulent e-mail offers to everyone with a valid e-mail address/heartbeat.

How sad.

Posted by Mikal at 11:45 AM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Category: Who Knew



December 19, 2005

ONLINE DATING - FOR A RELIGION

Do you know what religion you are? Are you absolutely sure? According to an online test I took (only 20 questions, but they were 20 darned good ones)), Im a Liberal Quaker (who knew!).

The top score on the list below represents the faith that Belief-O-Matic, in its less than infinite wisdom, thinks most closely matches my beliefs. However, according to the site, even a score of 100 percent does not mean that my views are all shared by the faiths listed, or vice versa.

Belief-O-Matic then lists another 26 faiths in the order of how much they have in common with my professed beliefs. The higher a faith appears on this list, the more closely it aligns with my thinking, or at least thats what the Belief-O-Matic says.

Mikals Belief Rankings:

1. Liberal Quakers (100%)
2. Mainline to Liberal Christian Protestants (99%)
3. Unitarian Universalism (99%)
4. Neo-Pagan (79%)
5. Secular Humanism (79%)
6. New Age (74%)
7. Theravada Buddhism (68%)
8. Bah?' Faith (65%)
9. Mahayana Buddhism (65%)
10. Reform Judaism (64%)
11. Taoism (57%)
12. Christian Science (Church of Christ, Scientist) (56%)
13. Orthodox Quaker (56%)
14. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons) (54%)
15. Nontheist (53%)
16. New Thought (53%)
17. Scientology (48%)
18. Mainline to Conservative Christian/Protestant (48%)
19. Jainism (42%)
20. Jehovah's Witness (40%)
21. Orthodox Judaism (39%)
22. Sikhism (35%)
23. Islam (34%)
24. Seventh Day Adventist (34%)
25. Hinduism (29%)
26. Eastern Orthodox (21%)
27. Roman Catholic (21%)

Belief-O-Matic makes the practice of choosing a faith into an experience that resembles filling out a questionnaire for an online dating service. Answer 20 questions on this web site and the site spits back out a list of religions or faiths best suited to your answers. Even if youre absolutely 100 percent convinced of your religion or faith, you need to give it a whirl. It asks questions like, "What are the origins of the physical universe and life on earth?" and, "Why is there terrible wrongdoing in the world?" The multiple-choice quiz offers between three and eight answers to choose from.

So, what religion ARE you, and what does Belief-O-Matic have to say about it? Click here to find out!

Category: Who Knew



October 23, 2005

MIKAL NEEDS

From Ingrid over at ice cream, a fun Google-generated meme.

Here's how it works: Visit Google.com, and put your first name followed by the word needs in quotations in Google's search box (for example, "mikal needs") and click the 'Google Search' button. Write down the top 10 results. Here are mine:

  1. "Mikal needs our help badly." Courtesy of Torch the Bridge. Apparently, Mikal's home computer went down in February of this year, and he needed help getting it back up (no comment).
  2. "Mikal needs a change of scenery time and again, and through 2002 Mikal will be DJing frequently around Europe. This one, found here, goes on to say, "Buzzards of the record industry beware. The Norwegian Indie Record Phantom is here."
  3. "Mikal needs prayers. A little digging revealed that Mikal Spruill passed away after a lengthy illness. This site contains some messages from a family member.
  4. "Mikal Needs Ride to Cattle Raid." Subject line of a University of Nebraska-Lincoln listserv message from September of 1999. FYI... Just for the record, I didn't get into cattle raiding until early in 2002, so clearly this message is from a Mikal other than myself.
  5. "Mikal needs a date to a formal." No, I don't (Google link led me here). What I need is an invitation!
  6. "Mikal needs a vote of thanks all round....Well done Mikal!" Aww jeeze; thanks everyone; you make me blush..
  7. One area that Mikal needs to improve in is word recognition. He has difficulty sounding out new words that he meets when he reads. This is so not true... why just the other day I was telling a friend that it deosnt mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and I can sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae I do not raed ervey lteter by it slef but the wrod as a wlohe.So there!
  8. "Mikal needs to show him what its all about" (from a message board located here). Those are famous last words, I'm sure of it; but whose?
  9. Have a go and find the cheapest, discount Mikal imaginable in Canada! So come buy with Bid On Auctions for all your Mikal Needs. Let the bidding begin... [read next section super fast]...one dollar bid, now 2, now 2, will ya give me 2? Two dollar bid, now 3, now 3, will ya give me 3? Three dollar bid, now 4, now 4, will ya give me 4?
  10. Since this is a clean blog, Mikal needs to not show you the 10th result from the "mikal needs" Google search meme (Mom, just trust me on this one).

As is characteristic with some memes, I'm going to tag a few bloggers with this one, including Scott over at Sardonic Bomb, Josette at Halushki, Matt at Holzmann's Inside World, Steph at Commonplace Book, Mike at Mikerzz, Luke at Decisive Moments, and D. Lee at Banzai Chronicle.

Posted by Mikal at 12:28 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Category: Who Knew



October 12, 2005

ORANGE MUSHROOMS

Just in time for Halloween, we stumbled across these interesting looking mushrooms while hiking around Ogle Lake at Brown County State Park (Nashville, IN).

Orange_Mushroom.jpg

Does anyone know what these mushrooms are called, as well as what the adaptation is that makes them orange? In other words, in the spirit of fall and Halloween, did some enterprising park ranger spread food coloring over them in order to spice things up a bit, or is the coloring natural and meant to deter predators, i.e., Bambi and Raccoon Ralph , from gobbling it up? Just wondering if anyone knows?

Category: Who Knew



August 23, 2005

THE FUTURE OF TELEVISION, ONLINE!

Bored at work? Check out Wi-FiTV (www.wi-fitv.com), a free web site featuring real-time TV feeds from around the world. Launched just last week, the site, which provides one-click access to news, sports, music and general-entertainment channels, is super easy to use, and features around 200 channels that can be accessed using a cable, DSL, or T-1 connection. While I found session quality varies depending on the channel and connection speed, the sound is crystal clear. Channel feeds include stations from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, China, Brazil, Japan, Argentina, South Africa, New Zealand, Latvia, Greece, Iceland, Iran, and Russia, just to name a few.

Category: Who Knew



July 26, 2005

THINKING CAP TIME

A friend of mine assured me that each of the following questions are not 'trick questions' (meaning, each has an honestly straightforward answer, which you can find by clicking on the "Click Here to Continuing Reading" link below question #12.

  1. Name the one sport in which neither the spectators nor the participants know the score or the leader until the contest ends.
  2. What famous North American landmark is constantly moving backward?
  3. Of all vegetables, only two can live to produce on their own for several growing seasons (all other vegetables must be replanted every year). What are the only two perennial vegetables?
  4. Name the only sport in which the ball is always in possession of the team on defense, and the offensive team can score without touching the ball?
  5. What fruit has its seeds on the outside?
  6. In many liquor stores, you can buy pear brandy, with a real pear inside the bottle. The pear is whole and ripe, and the bottle is genuine; it hasn't been cut in any way. How did the pear get inside the bottle?
  7. Only three words in standard English begin with the letters "dw" and they are all common words. Name two of them.
  8. There are 14 punctuation marks in English grammar. Can you name at least half of them?
  9. Where are the lakes that are referred to in the sports team named The Los Angeles Lakers?
  10. There are seven ways a baseball player can legally reach first base without getting a hit. Taking a base on balls (a walk) is one way. Name the other six.
  11. Name the only vegetable or fruit that is never solid frozen, canned, processed, cooked, or in any other form except fresh.
  12. Name six or more things that you can wear on your feet beginning with the letter "s."

If you think you know the answers to some or all of these questions, click on the "Comments" link below, leave your answers, and then pop back in for the answer key.

Answers To The Quiz:

  1. The one sport in which neither the spectators nor the participants know the score or the leader until the contest ends....Boxing.
  2. North American landmark constantly moving backward....Niagara Falls (The rim is worn down about two and a half feet each year because of the millions of gallons of water that rush over it every minute.)
  3. Only two vegetables that can live to produce on their own for several growing seasons....asparagus and rhubarb.
  4. The only sport in which the ball is always in possession of the team on defines, and the offensive team can score without touching the ball...baseball.
  5. The fruit with its seeds on the outside....strawberry.
  6. How did the pear get inside the brandy bottle? It grew inside the bottle. (The bottles are placed over pear buds when they are small, and are wired in place on the tree. The bottle is left in place for the entire growing season. When the pears are ripe, they are snipped off at the stems.)
  7. Three English words beginning with dw.....dwarf, dwell and dwindle.
  8. Fourteen punctuation marks in English grammar....period, comma, colon, semicolon, dash, hyphen, apostrophe, question mark, exclamation point, quotation marks, brackets, parenthesis, braces, and ellipses.
  9. The original lakes referred to in Lakers....in Minnesota. (The team was originally known as the Minneapolis Lakers, and kept the name when they moved west.)
  10. Seven ways a baseball player can legally reach first base without getting a hit....taking a base on balls (a walk)....batter hit by a pitch, passed ball, catcher interference, catcher drops third strike, fielder's choice, and being designated as a pinch-runner.
  11. The only vegetable or fruit never sold frozen, canned, processed, cooked, or in any other form but fresh....lettuce.
  12. Six or more things you can wear on your feet beginning with "s" ? ...shoes, socks, sandals, sneakers, slippers, skis, skates, snowshoes, stockings and stilts.

    Posted by Mikal at 12:28 PM | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Category: Who Knew



June 14, 2005

THE 1 QUESTION IQ TEST

Here is a 1-question IQ Test to help you decide how you should spend the rest of your day.

QUESTION: There is a mute who wants to buy a toothbrush. By imitating the action of brushing one's teeth, he successfully expresses himself to the shopkeeper and the purchase is done. Now, if there is a blind man who wishes to buy a pair of sunglasses, how should he express himself? Think about it first before scrolling down and clicking on the "Please Click Here to Continue Reading" link below for the answer.

ANSWER: He opens his mouth and says: "I would like to buy a pair of sunglasses."

If you got this wrong, please pack up your things, turn off your computer, and do us all a favor--call it a day!

Category: Who Knew



May 16, 2005

A FLOCK OF SEAGULLS?

The other morning, while driving to work, I caught the tail end of some morning drive show team debating over whether it was factually accurate to call a group of seagulls a Flock. While I couldn't find the answer, which put me out of the running for free tickets to an upcoming Dave Matthews concert, I was able to locate group names for a whole bunch of other animals, many of which I found to be rather odd. Here are my favorites:


Apes: a Shrewdness of Apes
Butterflies: a Swarm, Rabble, Kaleidoscope or Flutter of Butterflies
Cheetahs: a Coalition of Cheetahs
Eagles: Convocation of Eagles
Grasshoppers: a Cloud of Grasshoppers
Hyenas: a Cackle of Hyenas
Jackrabbits: a Husk of Jackrabbits
Lice: a Flock of Lice
Nightingales: a Watch of Nightingales
Owls: a Parliament, Stare, Wisdom or Study of Owls
Penguins: a Rookery or Colony of Penguins
Rattlesnakes: a Rhumba of Rattlesnakes
Schnauzers: a Stench of Schnauzers
Tigers: an Ambush or Streak of Tigers
Vultures: a Committee of Vultures
Zebras: a Zeal, Herd or Dazzle of Zebras

Click on the link below for a deeper list (and don't give me any gripe for this post... what do you expect first thing on a Monday morning... some sort of weekend update?... well, it wasn't too exciting... I did spring cleaning all day Saturday and Sunday... woo-hoo!).

Antelopes: a Herd of antelopes
Ants: a Colony, Army, State or Swarm of Ants
Baboons: a Troop of Baboons
Badgers: a Cete of Badgers
Barracudas: a Battery of Barracudas
Bass: a Shoal of Bass
Bats: a Colony of Bats
Bears: a Sloth or Sleuth of Bears
Beavers: a Colony or Family of Beavers
Bees: a Grist, Hive, Swarm, Drift, Bike, Cluster, Erst or Nest of Bees
Bison: a Herd of Bison
Boar: a Sounder or Singular of Boar
Buck: a Brace or Clash of Bucks
Buffalo: a Herd, Troup, Gang or Obstinacy of Buffalo
Bullocks: a Drove of Bullocks
Buzzards: a Wake of Buzzards
Camels: a Flock or Train of Camels
Caribou: a Herd of Caribou
Caterpillars: an Army of Caterpillars
Cattle: a Herd, Drove, Drift or Mob of Cattle
Cats: a Clowder, Pounce, Kindle, Litter, Intrigue, Clutter or Comfort of Cats
Chicken: a Brood, Clutch, Flock, Run, Peep, Clutch or Chattering of Chickens
Clams: a Bed of Clams
Cobras: a Quiver of Cobras
Cockroaches: an Intrusion of Cockroaches
Colts: a Rag of Colts
Cormorants: a Gulp or Flight of Cormorants
Coyote: a Band of Coyote
Crabs: a Bushel of Crabs
Cranes: a Herd, Siege or Sedge of Cranes
Crocodiles: a Bask or Float of Crocodiles
Crows: a Murder or Horde of Crows
Deer: a Roe, Herd, Leash, Mob, Deer, Bevy or Roe of Deer
Dogfish: a Troop of Dogfish
Dogs: a Pack or Kennel of Dogs
Dolphins: a School or Pod of Dolphins
Donkeys: a Herd, Drove or Pace of Donkeys
Doves: a Flight, Duel, Dole or Pitying of Doves
Ducks: a Raft, Paddling, Bunch, Team, Brace, Bed, Flight or Flock of Ducks
Elephants: a Herd, Parade or Crash of Elephants
Elk: a Herd or Gang of Elk
Emus: a Mob of Emus
Ferrets: a Business of Ferrets
Finches: a Charm of Finches
Flamingoes: a Stand or a Flamboyance of Flamingoes
Flies: a Cloud, Hatch, Business or Swarm of Flies
Foxes: a Skulk, Cloud, Troop, Company, Leash or Earth of Foxes
Frogs: an army or Colony of Frogs
Geese: a Gaggle, Flock, Skein, Team, Wedge, or a Plump of Geese
Giraffes: a Corps, Troop, Herd, Tower, Kindergarten or Journey of Giraffes
Gnats: a Cloud or Horde of Gnats
Goats: a Flock, Herd, Tribe or Trip of Goats
Goldfinches: a Charm of Goldfinches
Goldfish: a Troubling of Goldfish
Gorillas: a Band of Gorillas
Greyhounds: a Leash of Greyhounds
Grouse: a Pack or Covey of Grouse
Gulls: a Colony of Gulls
Hamsters: a Horde of Hamsters
Hares: a Husk, Down or Mute of Hares
Hawks: a Cast, Kettle or Boil of Hawks
Hedgehogs: an Array of Hedgehogs
Hens: a Brood of Hens
Herons: a Scattering, Siege or Sedge of Herons
Herring: an Army of Herring
Hippopotami: a Bloat of Hippopotami / Hippopotamuses
Hogs: a Drift or Parcel of Hogs
Hornets: a Nest of Hornets
Horses: a String, Team, Harras, Pair, Rag, Field, Herd, Remuda, Set or Stable of Horses
Hounds: a Pack, Kennel, Mute or Cry of Hounds
Jellyfish: a Brood, Smuck or Smack of Jellyfish
Kangaroos: a Mob or Troop of Kangaroos
Kittens: a Kindle or Litter of Kittens
Lapwings: a Desert or Deceit of Lapwings
Lemurs: a Group of Lemurs
Leopards: a Leap of Leopards
Lions: a Pride, Flock, Sawt, Souse or Troop of Lions
Locusts: a Cloud, Plague or Swarm of Locusts
Magpies: a Tittering, Tiding, Gulp, Murder or Charm of Magpies
Mallards: a Sord or Brace of Mallards
Minnows: a Steam of Minnows
Moles: a Labour of Moles
Monkeys: a Troop, Cartload or Barrel of Monkeys
Moose: a Herd of Moose
Mules: a Barren, Pack or Span of Mules
Oxen: a Team, Yoke, Drove, Herd, or Span Oxen
Oysters: a Bed of Oysters
Parrots: a Pandemonium or Company of Parrots
Partridges: a Covey of Partridges
Peacocks: a Muster, Ostentation or Pulchritude of Peacocks
Pheasants: a Head, Nye, Nest, Bouquet, Nide or Bevy of Pheasants
Pigeons: a Kit, Flock, Flight or Loft of Pigeons
Pigs: a Herd, Trip, Litter, Drift, Drove, Sounder, Team or Passel of Pigs
Ponies: a Drove or String of Ponies
Porcupines: a Prickle of Porcupines
Porpoises: a Herd, School or Pod of Porpoises
Quail: a Bevy, Drift or Covey of Quail
Rabbits: a Bury, Colony, Warren, Nest, Herd or Litter of Rabbits
Rats: a Colony, Pack or Swarm of Rats
Ravens: an Unkindness of Ravens
Reindeer: a Herd of Reindeer
Rhinos: a Crash or Herd of Rhinos
Sardines: a Family of Sardines
Seals: a Herd, Harem, Trip, Rookery or Pod of Seals
Sharks: a Shiver of Sharks
Sheep: a Flock, Herd, Hirsel, Pack, Drove, Trip or Mob of Sheep
Snakes: a Nest or Knot of Snakes
Snipe: a Wisp or Walk of Snipe
Sparrows: a Host of Sparrows
Squirrels: a Dray or Scurry of Squirrels
Storks: a Mustering of Storks
Swallows: a Flight or Gulp of Swallows
Swans: a Game, Bank, Team, Herd, Wedge, or Lamentation of Swans
Termites: a Brood, Colony, Nest or Swarm of Termites
Toads: a Knot or Knab of Toads
Trout: a Hover of Trout
Turkeys: a Rafter or Gang of Turkeys
Turtle Doves: a Pitying or Dule of Turtle Doves
Turtles: a Bale, Dole, Nest or Turn of Turtles
Walruses: a Herd or Pod of Walruses
Wasps: a Pladge of Wasps
Weasels: a Confusion or Pack of Weasels
Whales: a School, Herd, Gam, Pod or Grind of Whales
Wolves: a Pack or Rout of Wolves
Woodcocks: a Fall of Woodcocks
Woodpeckers: a Descent of Woodpeckers

Posted by Mikal at 6:24 AM | Comments (8)

Category: Who Knew



March 24, 2005

TEST TIME: WHAT CANDY ARE YOU?

It's been quite a while since I posted one of these, and since I've been a bad blogger as of late, I figured now's as good a time as any to post one. Click on the image below to find out what type of candy you are.


If you're not into candy, click on the image below to discover your Zodiac personality.

Discover your Zodiac Personality

Happy Thursday, everyone! Check back tomorrow for a new installment of Four For Friday.

Category: Who Knew



February 14, 2005

WHO KNEW #2

Google Maps: Internet search giant Google recently added maps and driving directions to its armory of online services (cick here to see for yourself). While not as robust as MapQuest or Yahoo! Maps, I do like the click and drag feature once Google's maps appear on screen. Who Knew!

211 Service for Indiana: Hoosier's in search of information about critical health and human services available in their communities can now dial 2-1-1 for answers. The new service debuted here in Indianapolis last Friday, 2/11/05, and is being promoted as an easy-to-remember 3-digit dialing system (similar to 9-1-1 and 4-1-1) that makes a simple, but critical connection between individuals and families who are seeking services or volunteer opportunities and the appropriate community-based organizations and government agencies. Be warned though... dialing 2-1-1 doesn't work from all phones (not yet at least). Because of the way wireless calls are picked up by cell towers, the service isn't likely to work from your cell phone; nor should you expect it to work from your office if your place of work has phone extensions or a private branch exchange (PBX). Incidentally, dialing 3-1-1 in Chicago, Baltimore, Dallas, and New York City connects residents to hotlines for requesting city services. Who Knew!

Jake Jarvis: While most 13-year-old's blog about the mundane, this kid writes like he's a seasoned vet. The son of BuzzMachine.com's Jeff Jarvis, Jake Jarvis' blog isn't a must read just yet, but if he keeps it up, it surely will be. You may not think so but I see something in this kid that suggests that we'll be hearing about him in one fashion or another in the years to come. Who Knew!

Brushing Your Teeth & Heart Attacks: According to a study by Columbia University researchers, brushing your teeth may significantly reduce your risk of having a stroke or heart attack. Apparently, researchers have found a strong link between bacteria found in our mouths that cause periodontal disease and heart disease. Quoting from the article I found: The idea that oral bacteria shed from chronic gum infections, enter the circulatory system, and possibly contribute to diseases of the heart and other body organs once was widely accepted in medicine. The concept, known as the "focal infection theory," fell out of fashion by the 1940s, then resurfaced four decades later with the publication of new data proposing a link. Who knew!

Category: Who Knew



February 3, 2005

WHO KNEW #1

Who Knew Number One: Cowbells make any song sound good. Admittedly, this isnt an original thought. NPR ran a piece on this yesterday afternoon (click here to listen for yourself). Who knew!

Who Knew Number Two: Mexican UFOs are old Peruvian UFOs are new (this according to a co-worker who told me so when I offered up a standard hey, whats new greeting). Who knew!

Who Knew Number Three: Lemons contain more sugar than Strawberries. Who knew!

Who Knew Number Four: On my way from work the other night I stumbled across a radio station broadcasting an Indianapolis television station's live audio. WRTV, 87.7 on the FM dial, is a live broadcast of whatevers playing on the local ABC television station here Indy, including commercials. Who knew!

Who Knew Number Five: Tomorrow's 'Four For Friday' post will be the 500th entry in the life of this Blog. Who knew!