Tag Archives: news

funny pictures, episode 17

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It’s been a while since I’ve posted funny pictures, so it’s way overdue.  Plus, the first one has relevance based on current world events, if you’ve heard about Russia’s “takeover” of Crimea (part of the Ukraine).  Then there’s the usual randomness.

That's a unique perspective on Russia's position these days...

That’s a unique perspective on Russia’s position these days…

They're right... I don't understand.  Anyone care to explain?

They’re right… I don’t understand. Anyone care to explain?

That is actually a great idea!  Granted, most people would cancel their membership instead, but the concept is great... in theory.

That is actually a great idea! Granted, most people would cancel their membership instead, but the concept is great… in theory.

That's not right... and if it was intentional, that's just mean!  I understand targeted marketing, but that's just not caring about customers...

That’s not right… and if it was intentional, that’s just mean! I understand targeted marketing, but that’s just not caring about customers…

If your sweetheart wants a puppy, and this is the type of puppy she wants, then that's many bonus points.  However, be sure she wants a dog.  I've heard stories of guys who did not understand that concept, and bringing home unwanted pets will lose you many points.

If your sweetheart wants a puppy, and this is the type of puppy she wants, then that’s many bonus points. However, be sure she wants a dog. I’ve heard stories of guys who did not understand that concept, and bringing home unwanted pets will lose you many points.

I know there are tons of iAccessories for the iPhone series, but does anyone really buy this crap?  And note how easy it is to take a $600 iPhone 5 and make it look cheap and generic.

I know there are tons of iAccessories for the iPhone series, but does anyone really buy this crap? And note how easy it is to take a $600 iPhone 5 and make it look cheap and generic.

To see more funny pictures, click on the “Funny Pictures” category in the sidebar.

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Jetman, flying cars, the future

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In the news recently was someone called Jetman, who built his own jetpack with four rockets on it.  Supposedly he can go 190 mph.  Here’s a video:

That would be awesome to have.  I wonder if we’ll ever have flying cars or something like that.  There are still companies working on it, and every few years there’s news that it’s almost ready.  I’m thinking it won’t happen until computers are controlling them.  That may seem kinda scary, but even more scary is bad drivers and drunk drivers in a flying car.  Crashes would be even more dangerous, causing much more collateral damage.

He uses a parachute to land, which might seem lame for a jetpack, but I bet landings would be really tricky to maneuver, as well as extremely dangerous.

FYI, computer-controlled cars are already on the road — just not available for purchase yet.  Google has been testing them in certain areas.  So far, with hundreds of thousands of miles, they appear safer than the average human driver.  I’m not sure how I feel about that.  I actually enjoy driving; however, if I’m able to do other stuff during road trips, like video games, reading, sleeping, etc., then that would be awesome.

diet colas with artificial poop

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The other day I wrote about a spa using bird poop in facials, and at the end of the discussion I joked about what would be the next use of poop.  At the time, I was unaware of a breaking news story about diet colas that is somewhat related.  (Are you getting scared yet?)

diet cola - now with more artificial poopRecently the patent details for the artificial sweetener aspartame became available online, and well, it’s made with a certain byproduct.  (Are you sure you want to keep reading?  It might get even worse.)  Obviously it’s an artificial sweetener, which has certain connotations, but there’s more than you’d expect.  Some versions of aspartame are made by harvesting the protein waste (i.e., poop) of genetically modified E. coli bacteria, then adding methanol to it.  (On a side note, how someone invented this process is beyond my imagination, so I looked it up.  In 1965 a chemist was trying to create an anti-ulcer drug, and while generating a hormone for it, he licked his finger and accidentally discovered the sweet taste of aspartame.  Go figure…)

Aspartame is one of the most common artificial sweeteners, and it’s sold under the brand names NutraSweet® and Equal®.  It’s used because it’s about 200 times sweeter than table sugar, so less can be used, which lowers the calories in the food or beverage.  It is used in thousands of different food products.  The FDA maintains that it is completely safe.

It may be safe, but this is one of the those things that I kinda wish I didn’t know…

eating bacon to live longer

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bacon - sea of baconI just heard about a 105-year-old woman in Texas who says her secret is that she eats bacon every day.  I don’t know if that will stand up to medical scrutiny, but it’s worth something.

The article reveals her bacon “secret”, which should be enough for the whole article.  But then it talks about her birthday party, which featured over 200 guests, which is okay, I guess.  But then it goes into explaining why bacon has gotten a bad rap lately.  It’s somewhat ironic, given the subject of the article.  Apparently some research study linked processed meat to a premature death.  But check out their results — they claim that eating less than 20g per day (which is 0.7 ounces) could prevent an estimated 3% of premature deaths each year.  So if you eat only a bite or two of meat per day, you have a 3% chance of living longer.  For people who follow that advice, I wonder what the odds are on premature death due to not enjoying life as much…  (To each their own, but that advice wouldn’t work for me.)

The article then references another study saying that even a single serving of processed red meat increased the risk of participants dying by 20%.  I may not be a statistician, but I figure the risk of dying is 100%.  🙂  You can eat all the plants you want, but it is appointed for everyone to meet their Maker at some point.

Obviously bacon is somewhat unhealthy — not completely, but in some ways.  However, if a single serving of bacon (or any red meat) increases your risk of dying by 20%, and this woman has eaten bacon every day for 105 years so far (which could be up to 38,000 times), what would her risk of dying be?  I’d like to see one of those researchers calculate it and go tell her.  Maybe she’s like one of those cartoon characters who is invulnerable to the laws of physics because they don’t understand it.  🙂  Either way, whatever she’s doing has worked for her.

This breakfast platter from Tony's I-75 restaurant in Birch Run, MI, has 1 pound of bacon.

This breakfast platter from Tony’s I-75 restaurant in Birch Run, MI, has 1 pound of bacon.

I’m not claiming that all this research is bogus, but I think there’s a LOT more to it than just saying eating meat will kill you early.  I’ve known quite a few people — including my grandparents — who ate big country meals all the time (which included lots of butter, gravy, and fried foods), yet lived to be 90+ and still had above-average health.  I know that’s a small sample, but when you consider how Americans used to eat versus what we now “know” about nutrition, it’s amazing any of them lived past 25.  I’m not saying fattening foods are healthy, but I do wonder if natural / organic fattening foods might be healthier than much of the modern stuff with preservatives and additives and chemicals.  I can’t prove it, and I’m not convinced either way yet, but I do think there’s a lot more to nutrition and healthiness than we currently know.

Regardless of whether bacon is good for me or not, I’m now hungry for bacon…

explaining Dennis Rodman as U.S. ambassador

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Recently Dennis Rodman met with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un, and then he went to Rome to hopefully meet with the new Pope.  I haven’t heard a valid explanation of how this could’ve happened.  Rodman was a basketball star in the NBA years ago, but is he famous in North Korea?  Or did he achieve this meeting with some shuckin’ and jivin’?  Either way, no one knows.  But this picture below might be the best explanation I’ve heard thus far.

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the original Batmobile – you can buy it

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Someone just paid $4.6 million for the original Batmobile in an auction.  It was a cool car for its time, and I’d like to have it, but that’s a LOT of money!  Supposedly the guy who bought it is gonna keep it in his living room.  He must be single or have multiple living rooms, because the WAF (Wife Approval Factor) on that home decor design decision would probably be quite low.  I can imagine how it would go if I told my wife I want to put the Batmobile in our living room…

Batmobile - at auction

The original owner bought it for $1 in 1965 and spent $15,000 transforming the 1955 Lincoln Futura concept car into the Batmobile.  I’d say he got a good return on his investment!

George Barris Receives Life Achievement Award - Arrivals

Even though it was/is a concept car, it’s street legal.  It would be so cool to drive one of these around…  I’d accept a replica version…  🙂

I wonder what it would cost to make it actually shoot fire out the back… obviously you’d want to be able to turn it on and off.  A cursory glance online reveals this has been done, of course.  I figure they didn’t use atomic batteries like in the original.

Well, I looked more online before posting this, and happened to find where you can buy a Batmobile replica, and it’s actually got some of the tricks installed, such as the working rocket exhaust flamethrower, the glowing Detect-a-Scope radar screen, and the push-button ignition.  The only drawbacks are that it costs $190,164 and that it gets only 6 miles per gallon.  The latter I could live with, but the price might be a stumbling block. I suspect my wife will say that’s not in the budget.  She’ll start with nitpicky legalistic arguments like “That costs more than our house!”, and my logical reply of “But it’s the Batmobile!” will not work at all.  Women… always ruled by their emotions…  🙂

I can dream… and while I’m dreaming, I’m going to have my own Batcave, too…

Batmobile in the Batcave

holiday eating is not making you fat

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In recent years I’ve heard some “experts” on TV say you should eat light on Thanksgiving so you don’t become obese.  First of all, that’s stupid, and second, the research doesn’t support such tomfoolery.  According to a study, the average weight gain for the holiday season (including Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s) is just 0.8 pounds.  That’s not a typo.  For all the hype from the media outlets, you’d think people were becoming instantly obese from a couple of big meals.  0.8 pounds is nothing — you can gain that just from eating normal, or if your regularity is not as regular.  I figured the number would be higher, given the big holiday meals, the extra cookies, and the parties.

Obviously some Thanksgiving meals are more fattening than others, but a traditional feast shouldn’t be that bad.  I figure a normal Thanksgiving dinner wouldn’t be more unhealthy than some of the things you can get at restaurants, particularly all-you-can-eat buffets.  Plus you might be eating less processed food, which could make it healthier.

To diet on Thanksgiving day and Christmas day is foolish, if you want my opinion.  It’s hard enough to diet and eat right, particularly if you enjoy eating.  To miss out on the most special meals of the year would be depressing.  If you’re seriously trying to lose weight, one way to approach it is to eat healthier in the days leading up to the big meals, to rationalize eating a lot at the family get-togethers and parties.

Of course, common sense disclaimers apply.  For example, if you’re on the verge of a heart attack or some other severe health problem, maybe you shouldn’t eat a huge meal, but in that case, you should do something about it NOW.

Let’s get back to the study, if I may rant for a minute.  The health “experts” shouldn’t try to make people feel bad during the holidays if the research shows that the holiday eating isn’t the problem.  Here’s what irked me most about the article:

In the study, 14% of overweight and obese individuals gained more than five pounds during the holiday. In the abstract, the researchers wrote, “holiday weight gain may be an important contributor to the rising prevalence of obesity, even though absolute values for weight gain in this study were less than anticipated.”

Okay, so obese people gained more weight than average.  That’s not exactly breaking news, since they’ve obviously been gaining weight before then, so they’re just continuing the trend.  But notice the quote from the researchers, which basically says they’re still sticking to their hypothesis even though the statistics don’t support it.  Hopefully some people were reprimanded over that kind of junk.

So in conclusion, don’t feel bad about eating a few big meals during holiday feasts and parties.  The obesity problem isn’t caused by a couple of big meals here and there.  (Shouldn’t that be common sense?)  And the next time a news person on TV says to cut back during the holidays, eat another piece of pecan pie… or pumpkin pie… or cookies… you get the idea.  🙂  Eat, drink, and be merry.