Thursday Thirteen

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writing2Hello, my name is Nina. I am the world’s worst speller. I will be suffering from this until the day I die … or stop writing … whichever comes first. My family thinks it’s hysterical that I went into this line of work.

But that’s not what this post is about.

When I was in 7th grade we had an assignment to make a list of as many homonyms as we could discover. (Words that sound alike, but are spelled differently). I am a competitive cuss and I went through the dictionary scouring for words that sounded the same. I had a reeeeally long list when I went into school the next morning proudly passing in my homework, confident I’d have the most. But it wasn’t to be … David Zobel had the most! How dare he? Of course he was the state spelling bee champion that year, perhaps that had something to do with it. He had a humungus vocabulary. I came in second. Man, did that stick in my craw!
 
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And today I’ll share with you 13 reasons I think chocolate is better than sex.

1. There’s no such thing as bad chocolate.

2. A bag of M&M’s brings you multiple pleasure… every time.

3. I never had to pretend a cheap piece of chocolate was “the best I ever had”.

4. No busy day, foul mood, menstrual cramps or headache ever kept me from eating chocolate.

5. A hersey’s miniature never tried to pass itself off as a full-sized candy bar.
 
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Mr. Nina often asks me if there’s an owner’s manual for me. LOL! I wish. Not that he’d ever read it, I mean come on, he’s a guy. But still, there are some things I tell him, that he still doesn’t quite understand. In no particular order, here’s a list of things women wish men would understand:
couple with MusicLarge
1. Unless there are bones, blood or sex involved never interrupt a woman’s first cup of coffee (or tea)… her bath.. or the last chapter of her book.

2. A hamper is a thing… not an area of the bedroom.
 
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I thought I’d share with you not only 13 facts about Christmas, but how about my gift to you … a wee bit of the eye candy? I promise there’s no calories in these tasty treats!

1. At Christmas, it is traditional to exchange kisses beneath the mistletoe tree. In ancient Scandinavia, mistletoe was associated with peace and friendship. That may account for the custom of “kissing beneath the mistletoe”.

 
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IMG_4077I do think it’s important every once in awhile to take stock of one’s life. To really look at what’s going on. Sometimes it’s to re-evaluate and make adjustments to the course of my life. But this week I just want to share some of the things I’m truly grateful for.

1. The hubster – He drives me insane. He makes me laugh. He leaves his laundry laying around. He understands my needs like no one else on earth. He’s me best friend and I love him with all my heart.
 
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This is a little something I tripped over this week in my inbox. I thought you might enjoy a little humor about life (okay, mostly about women and sex … which is why I find them so amusing.)

1. “Ah yes, divorce from the Latin meaning to rip out a man’s genitals through his wallet.”
Robin Williams

rilassamento in un centro benessere2. “You know ‘that look’ that women get when they want sex? Yeah, me neither.”
Steve Martin

3. “Having sex is like playing bridge. If you don’t have a good partner, you’d better have a good hand.”
–Woody Allen

4. “Bisexuality immediately doubles your chances for having a date on Saturday night.”
–Rodney Dangerfield

5. “Having sex at 90 is like trying to shoot pool with a rope.”
–George Burns

6. “Women might be able to fake orgasms, but men can fake a whole relationship.”
–Sharon Stone
 
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Maine is the lobster capital of the world! (Well, Mainers believe that anyway.) But the recession has hit the market hard … very hard. So my thirteen this week is about the spiny creature of the sea–the lobster. I’m not sure if it will encourage you to have lobster at your family get-together, but at the very least, I hope it will give you food for thought. hee hee

1. Lobsters are part of the order of Crustaceans, which means, like insects, they have their skeleton on the outside.

2. Lobsters are generally a dark green to black color and turn red only after cooking. But sometimes nature “burps” out color variations.

lobster

 
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I can not tell a lie. I LOVED December in New England. Oh, not because it was winter–just the opposite in fact. Christmas Eve it was nearly 70F! I don’t ever remember that happening in my lifetime. But there was no hoping it could continue. But to make myself feel better, I thought I’d share with you some facts about snow. I’m not sure how the guys snuck in there. But try to suffer through the pictures if you don’t mind.

1. Almost 15.5 feet (475 cm) fell in Alaska over a 7 day period in 1957. (Well, with weather like that, you might as well crawl in bed and stay there.)

2. Snowflakes start as ice crystals that are the size of a speck of dust. When the crystals fall they join up with other crystals to form a snowflake which usually has six sides. (And six well-defined abdominal muscles is also a very pretty arrangement.)

3. In the early 1900s, skiers created their own terminology to describe types of snow, including the terms “fluffy snow,” “powder snow,” and “sticky snow.” Later, the terminology expanded to include descriptive terms such as “champagne powder,” “corduroy,” and “mashed potatoes.” (And I’m sure they’d name this one “yuuuummmy”.)

4. Each year an average of 105 snow-producing storms affect the continental United States. A typical storm will have a snow-producing lifetime of two to five days and will bring snow to portions of several states. (I don’t know ladies, do you think there’s enough of this guy to spread around?)

5. Snow at the North and South Pole reflect heat into space!! That happens because the ice acts like a mirror with the heat of the sun, and the heat bounces off the ice and into space. (Mirrors always seem to bounce spectacular views.)

6. Mt Kilimanjaro in Tanzania is the only permanent snowcap within sight of the equator. (Of course if you’re looking really close, you may find something even more appealing within sight of the equator.)

7. There is NOT a law of nature that prohibits 2 snowflakes from being identical. (This is also true of humans.)

8. The largest piece of ice to fall to earth was an ice block 6 meters (20 ft) across that fell in Scotland on 13 August 1849. (If this guy was around … it would have melted quickly!)

9. Practically every location in the United States has seen snowfall. Even most portions of southern Florida have seen a few snow flurries. (This poor darling seems to be in desperate need of some ice … come visit me pretty boy.)

10. In Australia, snowfalls are common above 1,500m in the Alps during the winter, but there are no permanent snowfields anywhere on the continent. (It’s probably better if these gentlemen don’t worry about cold weather anyway.)

11. I heard once that snowflakes were pieces of clouds shaken loose when the angels danced with God. (Well, if that’s who’s dancing, who am I to be upset about some snow?)

12. Snow can be further classified into six basic patterns called: Needles, columns, plates, columns capped with plates, dendrites, and stars. (And these gentlemen can be classified as tall, dark, and dangerous.)

13. When cloud temperatures are at the freezing point or below, and there is an ample supply of moisture in the air, ice crystals form around a core particle. As water vapor condenses and freezes, the complex pattern of a snowflake is born, one molecule at a time. A snowflake’s hexagonal shape is born at the atomic level. It is here that water molecules bond together into … (Yeah, yeah whatever … bring on the eye candy!)

With the re-release of GRAPES OF RAPTURE right around the corner, I’ve been thinking a lot about fruit. With a little research I’ve put together a list of 13 of the weirdest fruits I have found. I want to thank the Fruit Emporium that provided the bulk of the information. Someone much braver than I tasted these fruits.

1. Cherimoya Also known as the ‘custard apple’. The cherimoya is a large pear shaped fruit, but with a green ‘mottled’ surface – which upon opening reveals a white avocado-type center.

fruit_cherimoya

2. Tamarillo – Also known as the “tree tomato”.

fruit_tamrillo

3. Dragon Fruit – The kiwi fruit’s evil twin brother. Imagine if you will – rice pudding, but without the nice creamy flavour – and all the sugar taken out.

fruit_dragon

4. Mangosteen – milky/transparent colour of the fruit is weird enough, but the taste is quite… unusual – and delicious! Just like a tangerine, each mangosteen is comprised of numerous ‘mini-segments’.

fruit_mangosteen

5. Granadilla – The inside ‘membrane’ jelly substance is similar to the passion fruit, and the taste isn’t bad – kinda like a cross between a watered down kiwi fruit, fermented grapes with a hint of ‘bubble gum’ flavor too.

fruit_granadilla

6. Starfruit – There are two main varieties of the Starfruit (also known as the ‘carambola’.)

fruit_star

7. Lychee – This small fruit contains an extra-added unique flavour on top of an ordinary grape.

fruit_lychee

8. Physallis – Also known as the ‘Caped Gooseberry’ or ‘Goldenberry’. Tasting like a cross between a cherry and a peach with a slight hint of cucumber.

fruit_physalis

9. Pawpaw – ‘Paw’ by name – poor by nature. It is in fact even more boring than a watermelon if that’s possible. Suffering from the same problems that plague other fruit, it basically tastes… a bit like a vegetable.

fruit_Pawpaw

10. Rambutan – Looks a little like a lychee that’s suddenly decided to de-evolve and grow hair.

fruit_Rambutan

11. Persimmon – A tomato shaped fruit except it has a yellowy golden colour to it. Taste is ummm…. sorta subtle peach taste, and quite a bit of the bland ‘cucumber’ taste, but saltier.

fruit_Persimmon

12. Tamarind – This fruit consists of a sticky, dry, pulpy fruit which is ‘contained’ in a long, dull brown ‘pod’. (Looks a little like dog pooh, IMHO…)

Fresh Tamarind with leaves

13. Kiwano Horned Melon – The horned melon … is a vine of African origin, grown for its fruit, which looks like an oval melon with horns, and is very decorative.

fruit_kiwana

Okay … so tell me … who’s tried some of these? Stand up and be counted. I want to hear all about it.   

I love the olympics. I watch them with a box of tissues beside me because inevitably I ball my eyes out when someone … anyone … does something like break a world record or competes with a broken foot or gets the first ever gold medal for their country. Or when they show an athlete’s parents cheering them on (like Michael Phelps’ mother.) Or the year athletes from Russia and Georgia hugged and shared the podium proving sports isn’t about politics. Okay … I’m crying again.

I’m listing thirteen sports. Only ten are actual Olympic competitions. Can you pick out the three that aren’t currently on the official 2012 Olympic program?

I’ll post the answeres on Wednesday if you’re really curious stop by. So here’s the list. Which 3 don’t belong? (Okay, and no fair googling before you answer.)

1. Women’s Badmitton
A racquet sport played on a small, rectangular court, divided in half by a net. A projectile called a shuttlecock is hit back and forth over the net until the shuttlecock hits the ground.

2. Men’s LaCrosse
Two teams of eleven hit and pass a ball around a field and try to knock the ball into their opponent’s goal.

3. Golf
A player uses different types of clubs to hit a ball into a hole in the lowest number of strokes as possible.

4. Men’s Table Tennis
Two or four players hit a lightweight ball back and forth, on a hard table, divided by a net. The ball may only bounce on the table one time,
and may not leave the table. A point is scored when a player fails to return a ball, or hits a ball out of bounds.

5. Sychronized Trampoline
Competitors must do combinations of twists, turns and shapes while bouncing on a trampoline.

6. Tug of War
Two teams pull on opposite ends of a rope in a test of strength.

7. Women’s Handball
Two teams of seven pass and bounce a ball around a field or court, and try to throw the ball into their opponent’s goal.

8. Men’s Field Hockey
Two teams of eleven hit and pass a ball around a field and try to knock the ball into their opponent’s goal.

9. Team Archery
Shooting an arrow with a crossbow. The archers stand 70m away from a target that is 1.22m in diameter (IOC).

10. Women’s Water Polo
Two teams of seven compete against each other in a pool. The object is to advance the ball down the pool and score a goal in the opponent’s goal.

11. Sychronized Diving
Swimmers perform acrobatics side-by-side while jumping into the water off of a platform or a springboard.

12. Taekwondo
A Korean martial art. In the Olympics, only sparring is allowed, which is a relatively “free form” type of fighting. Two fighters bout in three,
two-minute rounds, with 30-second breaks in between each round. Points are awarded for legal, accurate technique.

13. Men’s Synchronized Swimming
Swimmers perfom a synchronised routine of acrobatic/dance moves in the water, usually accompanied by music.

So What do you think? Which sports aren’t listed in the official 2012 olympic program?

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