User-agent: Mediapartners-Google* Disallow: Things that make you go hmmm.: October 2006

Things that make you go hmmm.

Friday, October 27, 2006

What are the chances?

The other day I went off to the grocery store to buy a few necessities. As often is the case, my daughter wanted to go with me. I usually don’t mind and it gives my wife the opportunity to get things done or to just enjoy a break from having to care for one of our two children. Before we left, I got my wallet and cell phone and the list of 6 things that I had to get (the cell phone is always an absolute requirement in order to verify that I am getting the exact 6 items that are desired). My girl wanted to put on her necklace, bracelet, ring, and her “clip-clop” shoes. I convinced her to just put on tennis shoes instead of the dress shoes with heels which she calls “clip-clop” shoes because of the sound they make on a hard floor when she wears them. My wife gave in on her wearing the jewelry with the condition that I periodically check to make sure she still has them on.

Having just turned 4, my little girl is not yet the best at being responsible with keeping track of her things herself. Of course I forgot about the condition to check until we got home and we discover that our daughter doesn’t have the ring on her finger. After going back and forth laying the blame (for not checking periodically or at all, and for not letting her wear it in the first place) and after checking everywhere in the car and at home, I decided to go back to the store to retrace our steps to see if I could find it.

What do you think are the chances that I would find this little ring? As I was driving, I was thinking my chances were pretty slim, but I could see if anyone had turned it in or leave my name and phone number in case someone did eventually. When I got to the store parking lot, I parked in the space next to where we had parked and looked all over the pavement. Nothing. While we shopped, we used one of the neat new carts that has a little kid car in front and I was disappointed to not see it in the cart return area where I left it. So I walked to the front doors of the store while staring at the ground to see if it happened to be there. Nothing. Then I noticed 3 of the special kids carts lined up by the front door. I checked in the first one, nothing. I checked in the second one, nothing. Then I had to squeeze between some other regular carts to check in the third one. I bent over and lifted up the little seat belt and there was the little pink ring!!! Can you believe it? It must have fallen off in the seat and never fallen out and it was still there. Now how often does something like that happen?

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Does anyone like to play the games that come on their cellphone? I do. I have a Nokia basic model phone and I like to play Sky Diver. My current high score is 17,260. Can anyone beat that? Does anyone have a clue what I am talking about?

Now I know people like to have their cellphones with them anywhere they go, but this ---> is ridiculous. She will have some pretty funny tan lines.

Check out this picture.

<--- It is the headquarters of the cellphone company T-mobile Austria in Vienna.

Monday, October 23, 2006


As a result of my previous post, I came across some more interesting information about zippers.
Some of the history about zippers goes all the way back to 1851 when a device similar to the zipper called an automatic continuous clothing closure was patented by Elias Howe, but it was not of practical use and did not reach the market. In 1891, the aforementioned Whitcomb L. Judson patented a similar device called a clasp locker for fastening shoes and boots, and he marketed the invention through his Universal Fastener company. These two designs used hooks and eyes. The true zipper, and the design used today, is based on interlocking teeth.

When I further researched Whitcomb L. Judson, I found out he obtained several other patents and also made several automobile improvements during his life. One of these inventions is what we now know as the cupholder. It also says that a high school in Texas was named in his honor. I assume this refers to Judson High School in Converse, TX and whose mascot is the Rockets, which leads us full circle.

Not until the 1920s and 30s did the zipper become popular for children's clothing and men's trousers. In 1934, Tadao Yoshida founded a company called San-S Shokai in downtown Tokyo. This company later changed its name to Yoshida Kōgyō Kabushiki-gaisha and then eventually to YKK. They have now become the world's largerst manufacturer of zippers and fastening products. If you are wearing an article of clothing or have some other product with a zipper, take a look at it. It probably has YKK on it. I wondered what those letters were before and thought maybe it somehow had to do with the year 2000, Y2K. Guess not. Hope you enjoyed this interesting look at the useless information regarding the zipper.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Team Mascots

I think I'm pretty good at knowing most of the mascots for college teams. There are some strange ones out there that I'm not exactly sure where they came from or what they are, but I do know what the name of their mascot is. Like the #1 team in the country the Ohio State Buckeyes. Why would you choose to name your team Buckeyes after the nut of the state tree? Or Syracuse Orange? They must have thought they asked what was their team color instead of team mascot. And how would you like to be a Boilermaker from Purdue? How about a Hokie from Virginia Tech? There are also some mascots I know that most people wouldn't know like the Southern Illinois Salukis or the Wichita State Wheat Shockers (now shortened to just Shockers) or the Idaho Vandals or the New Mexico Lobos.

Now I think I found a new favorite mascot that I had never heard of before. The Zips from Akron. I have to admit I don't follow the Mid-America Conference as shows by the fact that I had never heard of the Zips even though they are the defending MAC champions in football. The University of Akron's athletic teams are known as the Zips which is short for Zippers which were overshoes that were nationally popular in the 1920s and 1930s, and also the zipper was an invention from Akron by Whitcomb L. Judson. The university's mascot is "Zippy", a kangaroo. What are some mascots that you know that maybe aren't well known? What is your favorite mascot?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Comment on this funny picture

I am interested in what funny comments you can come up with for this odd picture.
How about "Our local police... keeping toddlers in line", or "let's clear our streets of thieves, murderers, rapists, and five year olds"?
I'm sure you can come up with a better one.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Discover the '08 Mercury Mariner

The '08 Mercury Mariner. Yes that is 2008. That was the advertisement I saw on MSN the other day. Whaaaat's up with advertising and selling autos ahead of time? It is usually around 4-5 months ahead of time, but this is one year and 3 months ahead of time. I did click on the ad and it said that the 2008 Mercury Mariner will be available in early 2007. Why not just sell new models during their corresponding model year. Now someone who buys this 2008 vehicle in early 2007 may put 15,000 miles on it before 2008.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Did you know that Iowa has more land under cultivation than any other state? They are followed by Texas, Illinois, Kansas, and Minnesota. Are you surprised by any of these? With how big Texas is and I know there are a lot of farms, I'm surprised that they aren't first. And Illinois, I never knew there was that much farmland in Illinois. I guess it's because I have never been there and I just think of Chicago. And Minnesota, I just thought there were a bunch of lakes and that it was too cold there.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Roly-poly to me, how about you?

What do you call this common bug? I always called them roly-polys growing up in Texas. My wife calls them pill bugs growing up in the Pacific NW. I was surprised to find out that they are listed on Wikipedia here as woodlice and that they are crustaceans. Hmmm. Other common names for woodlice include: armadillo bug, cheeselog, doodlebug, monkeypea, pill bug, roly-poly, potato bug, roll up bug, slater, and sow bug. Some of these sound good, maybe I will change what I call them. Check out their giant aquatic cousin, the Giant isopod here. Ahhh. I don't think I will be sticking out my finger to let that thing crawl on me or to watch it roll up.