April 19, 2024

Turtle Island Quartet plays 'All Along The Watchtower'

"Let us not talk falsely now."

[via Allan Kozinn and the New York Times]

April 19, 2024 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Polar Bear Bench — Judy Kensley McKie


Carved from Carrara marble


and numbered 4/6,


this 1997 bench is 72.6 inches long x 20.5 inches wide x 20 inches high.


It realized $226,800 at a 2022 Sotheby's auction.

April 19, 2024 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (1)

Splinter Tweezers


Below, Anton Benson's Cool Tools review.

I received these lighted magnified tweezers as a stocking stuffer a few years back, and although I am fortunate enough to have great eyesight, these tweezers are absolutely amazing for inspecting and removing any splinters that might find their way under your skin.

They use a single LED light that is perfectly pointed at the tips of the tweezers and a large 4.5x magnifying lens that helps to see those skin-colored cactus spines or tiny pieces of glass. The tweezers themselves are extremely sharp and are made for getting in there, more so than any other purpose.

The only drawback is that the tweezer tip protector is easily misplaced and without it, the tweezer tips can pierce toiletry bags and get bent.

Overall, these are fantastic tweezers for finding your way around minuscule splinters or other small jobs in need of magnification and illumination.



Don't need the light?

You've come to the right place:



April 19, 2024 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

April 18, 2024

17-year-old Ray Kurzweil appears on "I've Got A Secret" in 1965

April 18, 2024 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)



I like to post this photo of my favorite koozie every couple years to supplement my daily in-person ration of humble pie, which I receive by keeping this wonderful beverage chiller in a prominent place in my abode.

April 18, 2024 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Peach Pitter: Episode 2


Last month I featured a peach pitter/slicer combo.


It was expensive: $20.51 until that version sold out and then $30 for the only alternative my Crack Research Team©®™ was able to locate.


One reader asked for a super-specialized/focused peach tool that did just one thing perfectly: split the fruit and remove the pit in one motion — without slicing the two halves of the peach as do the tools featured in March.


Your wish is my demand: it took over a month of research but the Team©®™ succeeded in finding just the right tool


(above and below).


Features and Details:

Easy-grip BPA-free plastic handle

Stainless steel

6.38" x 3.88"



April 18, 2024 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)

April 17, 2024

How to Get the Freshest Loaf: Breaking the Bread Code


Excerpts from Paul Michael's Wise Bread post follow.

It turns out that there's a simple visual code that can take you straight to the freshest loaf in seconds. And it's all contained in the twist ties or plastic clips around the top of the bread bag.


I often wondered why they used different colors on those tags and ties. As it turns out, they indicate when the loaf was baked. The standard is as follows:

Blue: Monday

Green: Tuesday

Red: Thursday

White: Friday

Yellow: Saturday

An easy way to remember it, though, is to simply recall the alphabet. The colors run in alphabetical order, so the earlier they appear in the alphabet, the earlier in the week the bread was baked.

This whole system was set up to help the supermarkets and grocers identify which bread was new, which was getting old (so it can be put on sale), and which was out of date and needed to be removed from the shelves. As a general rule of thumb, you should only see two colors of tags on the shelves at any one time, or three maximum for those days when bread wasn't delivered. But that doesn't stop old bread from sneaking through.

So when you go to the store for your next loaf, make sure the color of the tag is the same as the day on which you are shopping. Blue for Monday, green for Tuesday, and so on. Please note that if it's Wednesday, you also want green. Sunday, you want yellow. For some reason, the system does not include those days. Some say it's because bakers did not used to bake on Wednesdays and Sundays.

In some rare instances, you may see bread tags that are one color regardless of the day on which they were baked. They may simply contain a date. In that case, here’s what you need to remember:

The date on the tag is the sell-by date, not the date it was baked.

Ahh, but what if there's just a twist tie that’s always the same color? In that case, you should see a date somewhere on the bread bag. The same rule from above applies (it's the sell-by date).

Finally, you should know that some companies have created their own color codes.

April 17, 2024 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

16-year-old Nicole Kidman in 'BMX Bandits' (1983)

Bonus: she appears on Australian TV's "Young Talent Time" (below)

to promote the film.

April 17, 2024 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Cajun in Your Pocket


From websites:

Let the spices roll from the bayou and into your ears as you pull out the remedy for every situation: Cajun in Your Pocket!

Hear the crawdads tap dance as they hear "OO, I love you like a pig loves corn!"

Watch as the gators spin to the sounds of "Aieee!" and "We gon pass a good time, yeah, cher."

For someone unfamiliar with this good time dialect, it will sound like a whole new language.

A steamy language that beckons: "Laissez les bons temps rouler!" which translates to "Let the good times roll".

Whip out the gumbo and the jumbo shrimp because your inner Cajun's breakin' out of its cage.

Six Authentic Cajun Phrases To Help You Integrate

"We gon pass a good time, yeah, cher" ( We're going to have a good time, baby!).

"Aieee!" (An exclamation, heard in many Cajun songs signifying a temperature rise).

"Oo, I love you like a pig loves corn" (Cajuns like pigs, pigs like corn).

"You gotta suck da head on dem der crawfish" (You must suck on the crawfish head to release the tasty juices).

"Laissez les bons temps rouler" (Let the good times roll).

"Oo, cher look like you gotta Cajun in Your Pocket" (You're starting to get a lil' flavor in your plain ol' boring vanilla ol' stew).

Requires 3 AAA batteries (included)


$17.99 (shrimp not included).

April 17, 2024 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

April 16, 2024

Is it raining in Vancouver?

Screenshot 2024-03-10 at 4.04.08 PM

Note to Vancouverites: the most useful site ever.

Around the turn of the century I spent several wonderful days inline skating in Stanley Park along the path above.

April 16, 2024 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

Evolution of the Coke bottle


"The Coke bottle is the most perfectly designed package in the world." — Raymond Loewy

[via Larry J. Kolb]

April 16, 2024 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

World's smallest binder clip

Screenshot 2024-03-31 at 9.49.28 AM

I ❤️ these.

Functions just like a regular binder clip with the strength to hold up to 20 sheets of paper.

Screenshot 2024-03-31 at 9.49.40 AM

Clip is 3/8" wide with 3/16" capacity.


10 for $4.25.

April 16, 2024 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

April 15, 2024

'Bias of Thoughts' — Optical Illusion Bookshelf


From Neatorama: "How many shelves are there? Look to the left: four. Look to the right: three. The design is based on the illusion known as Impossible Fork or Blivet [below]."


Designer John Leung of ClarkeHopkinsClarke Architects in Melbourne, Australia wrote, "Thoughts are biased. When ideas are passed from one person to another, due to the transfiguration of the communication process and the frame of mind of the receiver, they are always perceived with bias."


"Inspired by the famous 2D drawing of the optical illusive bookshelf,


a 3D structure is translated and the 'Bias of Thoughts' bookshelf is formed. It can be used for shelving books and iPads as well as hanging magazines."


"Visually, the optical illusion serves as a reminder that, whenever one picks up a medium, ideas can be misinterpreted when passed from one end to the other."

April 15, 2024 at 04:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0)

My review of Brian Greene's 'The Elegant Universe'


Back story: in early 2000 Barnes & Noble held a contest in which entrants were required to explain, in 250 words or less, why a given book of their choice merited inclusion in what was to be called the Independent Thinkers series, a group of books selected for their original and provocative points of view.

Below is my submission for the contest.

Brian Greene's "The Elegant Universe," like any book, is an idea in two dimensions: words on paper. This brave text would put lightning in a bottle; its heart is nothing less than an explanation of how our everyday world is a kind of Potemkin Village, masking a violent, seething, unimaginably frantic 11-dimensional space of energy fields and matter exploding and vanishing within and around us.

The audacity of any attempt at a final "Theory of Everything" is always admirable and yet, ultimately, poignant and futile. In an attempt to understand all that appears mysterious by way of reason and mathematics, Greene shows how the greatest thinkers of modern physics open vistas of thought that appear tantalizingly close to success at explaining our universe. It is as if the belief of the leading physicists at the dawn of the twentieth century that everything important had been discovered, and what remained was only to fill in the details, never existed: what's past becomes prologue.

If indeed we are walking, talking, scheming, dreaming energy fields, composed of nothing but infinitesimally tiny vibrating loops of string-like stuff, sleeping and then waking each morning and resuming our 11-dimensional trip through time, each of us at a submicroscopic level indistinguishable from any other of the six billion souls on the the planet, so be it. The very idea of a shared nature, our common essence, is one so powerful and uplifting that the book containing it demands inclusion in the Independent Thinkers series.

I didn't win, place or show.

I still like the essay, though.

April 15, 2024 at 12:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

Minute Maid Pineapple Zero Sugar FTW

Screenshot 2024-03-29 at 6.28.28 PM

This new variation in Minute Maid's superb Zero Sugar line follows Lemonade, Fruit Punch, and Mango Passion.

Screenshot 2024-03-29 at 6.23.47 PM

I think this one's their best flavor yet.

Screenshot 2024-03-29 at 6.24.54 PM

Minute Maid has cracked the code to make zero sugar drinks not taste as if they're zero sugar.

Screenshot 2024-03-29 at 6.26.44 PM


At grocery stores everywhere.

April 15, 2024 at 08:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0)

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