Saturday, November 29, 2008

Getting in the holiday mood

Here in the desert, it is sometimes a challenge to get in the spirit. This will chill you out, doggone it:

Friday, November 21, 2008


Coming from a family full of plumbers I could not resist posting this information on this, World Toilet Day. Al Gore is also celebrating by suggesting we all read Jared Diamond's book Collapse because of his amazing fear that civilization is going down the road of the Mayans (they apparantly suffered a sudden die out). The funny part of that is that his blog is accompanied by a picture of him in his office at his 10,000 square foot Nashville home surrounded by huge messy piles of paper. I am really confused about what he would have us do, exactly.

Anyway, back to the toilets:

Toilet facts:

The average person spends three years of their life on the “john”.
The average person flushes a toilet about 2500 times a year, while using about eight sheets of toilet paper per day.
An estimated 2.6 billion people worldwide do not have access to proper toilet facilities, particularly in rural areas of China and India.
Lack of suitable toilets and sanitation kills approximately 1.8 million people a year, many of them children.
According to Jack Sims, a further 500 million toilets are needed to bridge the gap in sanitation.
The first flushing toilet was invented in 1596 by Sir John Harrington, a British noble and godson to Queen Elizabeth I. He only invented one, as he was ridiculed by his peers, but he still used it for himself.
Most toilets flush in the key of E flat.
On average, a person will use 22 litres of drinkable water every day flushing a toilet.
From an article By Ian Rakowski
November 19, 2008 12:01am

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Potential Gift Card Debacle


Caution: This is somewhat of a moving target; for the latest go to

This came from a kind person:

It seems there are lots of stores that are closing due to the "recession" and the fact that people are not shopping. If you have any "gift cards" from these stores, make sure you use them, or you will lose them !

Watch those store money cards and gift cards.. and credit slips! Stores that informed the Security Exchange of closing plans between October 2008 and January 2009. PLEASE PASS THIS ON TO ALL YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS.

Circuit City stores... most recent (? how many)

Ann Taylor- 117 stores nationwide are to be shuttered

Lane Bryant,, Fashion Bug ,and Catherine's to close 150 store nationwide

Eddie Bauer to close stores 27 stores and more after January

Cache will close all stores

Talbots closing down all stores

J. Jill closing all stores

GAP closing 85 stores

Footlocker closing 140 stores more to close after January
Wickes Furniture closing down

Levitz closing down remaining stores

Bombay closing remaining stores

Zales closing down 82 stores and 105 after January.

Whitehall Jewelers closing all stores

Piercing Pagoda closing all stores

Disney closing 98 stores and will close more after January.

Home Depot closing 15 stores 1 in NJ (New Brunswick)

Macys to close 9 stores after January

Linens and Things closing all stores

Movie Galley Closing all stores

Pacific Sunware closing stores

Pep Boys Closing 33 stores

Sprint/ Nextel closing 133 stores

JC Penney closing a number of stores after January

Ethan Allen closing down 12 stores.

Wilson Leather closing down all stores

Sharper Image closing down all stores

K B Toys closing 356 stores

Lowes to close down some stores

Dillard's to close some stores.

Monday, November 17, 2008

High School Rendition of Battle Hymn of the Republic

This is a beautiful thing apparently from a high school:

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Reality Check

Like so many others I was lamenting the unbelievable expense associated with these political campaigns, the seeming bottomless barrel from which these funds flow and the sad waste of resources it represents. And then I came across this statistic in the November 14, 2008 issue of THE WEEK:

The 2008 presidential campaign and congressional races cost an estimated $5.3 billion, shattering all previous records, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. While that's a lot of money, it's less than the $6 billion Americans spent this year on Halloween candy, costumes and decorations. USA Today

Sometimes it really helps to put things in perspective.