Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Fact of the Day: Women's Fashion

Like almost anything in Western civilization, women's fashion also changed drastically during the shift between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. While it varied by time and location, generally women's dresses weren't drastically different in fabric and style than the tunics of men. However the Renaissance saw a large creation of more elegant and luxurious gowns. 

Monday, April 23, 2018

Photo: Doll House

This is my niece Little K playing with a new doll house. I will say, it's pretty clear she won't grow up to be a tom-boy. 

Fact of the Day: Catherine of Alexandria

According to the early Christian churches, Catherine of Alexandria was a "princess" and converted-Christian who converted many herself to the faith. The legend claims that the Roman Emperor Maximian had 50 of his best Pagan philosophers debate her and that she ended up "winning" the debate. However at the age of 18, she was murdered as a martyr by a Pagan Rome. However modern scholars doubt she existed as her story (along with the time she was supposed to have lived) is very similar to that of Hypatia, though Hypatia was a pagan who was murdered by Christians. 

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Shameless (TV Series) Season 1 Review

 Shameless is a series I heard of a few years ago. I don't think it was on Netflix at the time, so I didn't think I'd be able to see it anyway. But it is on Netflix now, and I needed a new TV series to watch, so Shameless was the top leading candidate for me to pick. It's based on a very popular UK TV series of the same name (including same names for the majority of the characters as well) though the UK series was almost over by the time the American show began. 

Photo: Chuck E Cheese Time

This was not long ago when my niece Little K went to Chuck E. Cheese. Like any kid her age, the place is like heaven to her. 

Fact of the Day: Wax Art

A far less common name for simple art crayons are wax pastels. 

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Photo: Little K and Grandma and Troll Doll

I guess my niece wanted her troll doll in the picture, but as she gets older, I will say my niece Little K looks more like my mother than the rest of my nephews/nieces.  

Story: Stupid Guy Asking For Help

My first job was at a supermarket, and one common task at night would be to clean the sidewalk off of dirt and trash. I'd use a leaf blower for most things, but I'd use a broom at the bench where (mostly managers) would have their breaks with their cancer-sticks. Sometimes there'd be someone out on the bench while I was cleaning and this time it wasn't a co-worker or manager, it was just some random person. He looked really shady as he was putting out his bad habit in the ash tray. He basically asked me if I could put in a good word for him as he wanted a job there, but he didn't even give me his name. Good thing for him he didn't, because that would just cause me to put in a bad word for him. But seriously what did he expect for me to go up to the hiring manager and say "Hey this weirdo wants a job, he seems like a good candidate to me". 

Fact of the Day: Communisme

While modern Communism came to reality due to the works of Karl Marx and his later radical supporters, the economical/poltical philosophy was originally the work of French writer Victor d'Hupay. 

Friday, April 20, 2018

Photo: Little Clemson Fans

My brother Steven is a big fan of the college football team Clemson. He takes his sons down to Death Valley every year so they can meet the coaches and players. 

Lady Bird (2017 Film) Review

 Lady Bird is a movie I've been looking forward to for quite tome time now. Most Oscar-nominated movies slip by me until they get the nomination, which I think was true for Lady Bird. But Saoirse Ronan, I think is one of the most talented actresses alive so I always try to check out any work with her in it. I honestly thought from what I heard critics were saying that it'd walk away with many Oscars, but it walked away with...zero, which is quite surprising considering that Saoirse Ronan lost again.

Fact of the Day: Costa Rican Pineapples

Costa Rica produces the most pineapples in the world, however Brazil and the Philippines aren't far behind. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Photo: Danny and His Bed

When I used to get pet beds for my dog, she'd treat it like she had nothing to do with it at first sight. A few hours later, and she'd already be taking a nap on it. My mother's cat Danny apparently took weeks to get on his. 

Things I Like: Fruit Punch Peeps Easter Candy

I don't eat much candy anymore, but I had to try these after seeing them in the Easter section. While virtually all peeps taste the same, these have a "fruit punch" taste. I liked them quite a bit. ironically my wife Daisy didn't like them despite having taste-buds that think almost everything is "good". She called them "sour" but I think they're sweet. I was never a fan of sour candy like warheads or crybaby candy. 

Fact of the Day: Mother Cow

Since cows are considered sacred in Hinduism, most Hindus believe that a cow should be shown the same respect that one would show to their own mother. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Photo: Baby Birds at My Brother's New House

 My brother is having a brand new house built for him in the country across from his in-laws. I heard they were getting "farm animals" as pets. My nephew Mr. C seems to really like this baby chicken (I think) here.

Story: Stupid Lei

 Spring is the busy season at my work, so we usually get a seasonal person to help us out. We got two of them this year, one of them was a young woman named Lei. Despite some feisty attitude (like giving me the bird several times...) she was actually competent at making paint and caught on fairly quickly and heck I can tolerate any imperfections when I can leave our desk and not worry about being pestered over something stupid.

Fact of the Day: James Jacob

The English name James is based on the Hebrew name Yaʻaqov which also led to the creation of the named Jacob as well. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Photo: Little K's Easter Haul

I worked on Easter but this is the stuff my niece Little K had gotten for Easter. 

Story: Little Brother's Father

 Most kids through the Big Brothers Big Sister program lack one parent or both, so when I met my Little Brother, I was surprised to learn that his dad was still alive and allegedly in his life but he lived way up in Pennsylvania. About two week's ago his mom told me they've been trying to contact him but didn't get a message back for quite some time. I didn't take that as a good sign but I'm an optimistic person by nature so I didn't think about it that seriously. 

Fact of the Day: Mohawk

The hairstyle mohawk is named after the Mohawk tribe of Native Americans. 

Monday, April 16, 2018

Photo: Da Plane

We have a small airport near my mother's house, I took my little brother (through the Big Brothers Big Sisters program) there to see the planes and whatnot. These are small planes, so there not nearly as big as the commercial ones, but they are neat to see. This one reminded me a bit of a "car from the future" in its design near the front. At least it does fly!

Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001 Film) Review

Atlantis: The Lost Empire was a movie I do remember coming out shortly after the turn of the millennium. I remember having almost no interest in the movie and I guess a lot of people did too as it really did poorly compared to other works by Disney. I fault the animation style and the fact that Disney chose to make their lead character look so dorky and ridiculous. But I wanted to catch up on Disney films I've missed over the years.  

Fact of the Day: WD40 Name

WD-40 stands for Water Displacement, 40th Formula. 

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Photo: Green Bay Packers Truck

I saw this truck right before I went to get some groceries. We are far from Wisconsin, but somebody here really loves the Green Bay Packers. 

Question: Did You Ever Have a Beeper?

While it led to the technology that gave us cell phones and smartphones today, it's easy to forget these little guys ever existed even the more advanced ones. Once almost everyone had a cell phone these went away like the dodo and at this time, I was just a kid in school, and I really had no use for one. I do find it neat when technology suddenly and abruptly becomes obsolete.  

Did you ever have a beeper? 

Fact of the Day: Obese

The English word obese is derived from the Latin word obesus which means to "have eaten until fat".  

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Phantom Thread (2017 Film) Review

 An actor I've admired very much is Daniel Day-Lewis because he rarely ever has bad luck with movies. He's very selective about what movie he appears in, so that's a reason he rarely ever gets involved with train-wrecks while almost any actor or actress has had more than their fair share of dumb films. Phantom Thread (allegedly) is his last movie before he calls it quits for the days of retirement. The film got many Oscar nominations but lost almost all across the board, mainly to The Shape of Water in many categories including Best Picture.

Photo: Daisy and Her Cherry Coca-Cola

Daisy wanted me to take her to the downtown library, I had to use the restroom and when I came out I couldn't find her. Then I thought about it and realized she was at the vending machines to get a soda. And...yep there she was. 

Fact of the Day: Abraham Abe Lincoln

Like many early presidents, Abraham Lincoln didn't have a middle name.  

Friday, April 13, 2018

Photo: Pizza Hut with Daisy

 I had errands to run at my mother's house, and my wife Daisy was with me. My mother was on 2nd shift at work, so she asked if we wanted to eat lunch. We chose Pizza Hut as it had been several months since we last sat down there.

Fact of the Day: Puerto Rico

In Spanish, Puerto Rico means "rich port". 

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Photo: QT Kitchens Strawberry Milkshake

I got this not long ago from the really nice QuikTrip gas stations we have around here. I've had the vanilla twice, but this is my first strawberry. It was pretty good. 

The Tudors (TV Series) Season 4 Review

A year without Game of Thrones has left me with a void of stuff to watch, The Tudors has kept me interested for a few months now. But now I've seen the whole series as the fourth season was its last. Unlike some fans, I knew everything that would happen before it did as I knew the life of King Henry VIII besides some minor details and some of his lesser-known people at his court. But what did I think of this take on the last day's of England's most infamous monarch?

Fact of the Day: Lutheran Phillip and the Catholic Mary

Philip, Duke of Palatinate-Neuburg was once considered to be a possible husband for Mary Tudor, daughter of King Henry VIII. Despite their religious differences (especially considering how loyal Mary was to the Catholic faith) the two were quite fond of each other. However the match didn't happen as King Henry VIII thought that since Phillip was a cousin of his fourth wife Anne of Cleves, it was too much of a deal-breaker. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Paul Ryan To Retire as House Speaker

Speaker of the House Paul Ryan will not seek re-election, which means he will not be Speaker of the House come next year when the new Congress takes effect. In many ways, Paul Ryan represented a lot of younger Republicans, who were were trying this quasi-Libertarian thing, but like many young Republicans, Ryan stood silently as Trump took the road of racist-"populism" and incompetent government. I'm actually happy for Speaker Ryan as for someone who hates government so much (despite having no real experience in the private sector) perhaps now he will now (maybe) be free from it.  

Photo: Kylan's 9th Birthday Gifts

My nephew Kylan recently turned 9 so this was his birthday haul from his extended family. We were all given short notice so a lot of family members didn't get a chance to make it.

Fact of the Day: Pizza Pie

Pizza is taken from an Italian word of the same spelling which originally referred to either pie, cake, or tarts. 

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Things I Like: Drain Weasel

I saw this earlier today and since it was rather inexpensive I decided to give it a try. My wife Daisy has a big hair problem with our shower drain that I've helped reduce but never quite solved. After a good minute or two I managed to get a lot of hair out of there. The only bad thing about the weasel is that it's only good for about one drain before it gets clogged too much in the little bristles. But at least our shower drain is free again.  

Photos: Mr K's 9th Birthday Party

 Daisy and I got to go again this year to my oldest nephew's birthday party. They hold it at this church's rec center and have a Clemson theme.

Fact of the Day: Kremlin

The Russian equivalent of the American White House, the Kremlin means "fortress inside a city" in Russian. 

Monday, April 9, 2018

Reign (TV Series) Season 3 Review

 My wife and I are fans of the TV show Reign, though she likes it more than I do. One of my issues is that the show is from the CW which makes their seasons way too long than they needed to be. Though I did get more excited for this season than the previous two as the story shifted more from "teen drama" to a story far more centered on the brutal nature of the royal politics of a Valois France and a Tudor England.

Photo: Going Home From Disney World

This is my niece in the car as her parents were driving back from Disney World. It's about an eight hour drive from Orlando in Florida to Spartanburg, SC. I'm not much of a traveler but that'd be too much driving for me in one day. Daisy and I want to go eventually, but we'll probably fly (about an hour and half) instead. 

Fact of the Day: Cuba Flag

Cuba's flag has remained unchanged since 1902. Despite being taken over by a Communist regime, the flag stayed the same, being quite rare for a Communist country not to use Communist colors or symbols in their national flag. 

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Photo: Lego Toy Story

This was during my brother's family trip to Disney World, it was pretty cool to see these giant Lego statues of Woody and Buzz Lightyear. 

My (Not So) Favorite Quotes: Trees Cause Pollution More than Cars

"Trees cause more pollution than automobiles do,"

-Ronald Reagan 

Like any typical Republican of the modern day, Ronald Reagan was a puppet for larger interests like the NRA, the super-rich, and of course the industries that pollute our environment. We know very well that cars pollute the air quite a bit, but Reagan dumbly let this jewel of mental idiocy slip out. While in cases of hot weather, trees do slightly pollute the air, but that's a tiny fraction of what cars do to the air.   

Fact of the Day: Italian Popes

While there have been hundreds of Popes since the founding of the Catholic Church, almost 3/4ths of the men who have become Pope were born in present-day Italy. 

Saturday, April 7, 2018

My Sonic Mania (Nintendo Switch) Impressions

 Like almost any millennial (especially among males) part of my childhood included the Sonic the Hedgehog games on Sega Genesis. I always liked the Mario games more (back in the old Nintendo vs. Sega days) but I always had love in my heart for Sega's mascot as well. Sega however slowly started to sink in quality and by the late 2000's, even Sonic games were rather...crap. Sonic Mania included development from some super fans (with game design skills) and it appeared to be pretty good from what fans were saying. I decided to give it a try the other day.

Photo: Pluto at Disney World

This is my brother and his family at Disney World. Like almost any dog, Pluto here seems pretty friendly

Fact of the Day: Spaghetti String

The English word spaghetti is derived from the Italian word spago which means "string".