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August 6, 2005

Peppers.com — 'World's largest collection of hot sauces'


"Over 6,500 different hot sauces grace the walls of our Hot Sauce Museum and we add to that total daily."

The Peppers store in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware sells 1,500 to 2,000 different sauces at any one time.

Bonus: "We have between 100 and 150 available to taste (below, the tasting bar) at all times."


Sounds like a must stop on the itinerary of any hot sauce lover.

Their website is really great.

Not only can you buy hot sauce online but there are all manner of nifty features.

For example, Sauce–O–Matic:


you put the criteria you seek into the handy–dandy search box and voila, up pops a list of sauces with that attribute.

Here's a link to their Top 20 sauces as chosen by their customers.

Take a virtual tour here.

There's also a "Naughty Section" in the store (below)


which requires you to be 18 or over to look at the sauces displayed therein.

Jeez, I sure hope this doesn't get me blacklisted again like I was with Version 1.0.

August 6, 2005 at 05:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Rubbermaid 300 Gallon Stock Tank — World's Cheapest Quick 'n Dirty Soaking Tub


I happened on a photo of San Diego Chargers tackle Wesley Britt happily sitting in one in the latest (August 8) issue of Sports Illustrated.

The caption describes him as catching up on the headlines in the shade and ice water as he comfortably reads the paper and soaks in one of these giant grey tubs (above).

Rubbermaid got about a zillion dollars worth of free advertising from that magazine photo.

I asked my crack research team to find out more about this sturdy–looking tub, which the Chargers have in multiples at their training headquarters.

Turns out that those whose hobby is "ponding" — creating and maintaining your own pond at home — swear by these Rubbermaid tanks.

    According to one ponding website:

    The reason we use a Rubbermaid stock tank is because of the rounded sides which enable the water to swirl in the bottom.

    This swirl effect helps to ensure that the water is filtered evenly as it flows upward through the media.

    You will notice the tank has indentations where the drain plug is installed.

    When the water flow coming into the tank hits these indentations it creates turbulence, which also helps.

    We told you before that we have made a lot of mistakes.

    Some of them were trying to use square tubs, 55 gal drums, everything from coolers to pickup truck toolboxes as a filter.

    They all have one thing in common… they failed.

    The Rubbermaid stock tank works.

    It is sturdy and strong so it will withstand colder climates also, after all it is used down or up on the farm.

    No need to thank us for making all those mistakes for you, it's our job.

    I sound like a Rubbermaid salesperson, I am not, but wonder if those guys are selling a lot more tanks for ponds now than for the field.

Another site notes that "Rubbermaid stock tanks are built tough for superior performance and lost–lasting durability in all kinds of weather extremes."

"Sturdy, all structural foam plastic construction — no worry about rust or corrosion. Even when frozen solid a Rubbermaid stock tank still resists cracking."

I found another website where the user finds the tank excellent for his koi and African frogs.

The tank measures 69"W x 63.25"L x 25"H and holds 300 gallons (1135.6 L).

The best price I found online was $165 here.

It's at StockyardSupply.com, whose website says:

    Rubbermaid's Farm Tough Stock Tank fights dents, cracks, rust and leaks.

    This is truly an innovative tank, different from any other on the market.

    Molded from a single piece of structural foam so there are no seams to split.

    In fact, one of the toughest tanks you can find anywhere.

    It resists denting even when faced with cold weather, high winds and ill–tempered animals.

    Its unique construction helps prevent typical problems of rust and corrosion.

    This is a superior stock tank!

No wonder


it's the unofficial soaking tub of the NFL.

August 6, 2005 at 04:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

'Let me not to the marriage of true minds admit impediments.'


Remember that line?

It's the first sentence of Sonnet 116 by William Shakespeare.

In the same way that a grain of sand can contain a world if regarded in the right light, so does the single word "admit" form an avenue of inquiry into the mind–body problem, issues of moral freedom, and much more in the mind of one John Lye, professor of English at Brock University in Canada.

Here is what he wrote, excerpted from his essay "Contemporary Literary Theory," which appeared in the 1993 Brock Review.

    Impediments: A Deconstructionlike Reading

    Let me not to the marriage of true minds
    Admit impediments. Love is not love
    Which alters where it alteration finds
    Or bends with the remover to remove.
    — William Shakespeare, Sonnet 116

    One might ask, does the word "admit" mean confess or allow to enter?

    Is "impediment" a legal or a conceptual term here, or a term from the world of physical manipulation, a stumbling block (the literal meaning of impediment, something that gets in the way of pedes, the foot), an intervention?

    While the word "impediment" as a moral or social hindrance is taken from the marriage ceremony, that explanation does not exhaust the meaning potential.

    In contemporary usage impediment was also a physical defect or impairment, a speech defect, and baggage; its meanings must potentially (from L. potentia, power) include even as they differentiate from these possibilities.


    And why, one wonders, are the worlds of criminality (admit) and of fault (impediment) immediately entered into the world of true minds ?

    Why is it that, on the levels of both conceptualization and enunciation, the nice flow of the first line is suddenly interrupted by two tough latinate words which seem to come from discourse and areas of concern other than that of the world of the marriage of true minds?

    The words not only need to be figured out, but actually enter worlds of opposition on several levels (criminality vs innocence, fault vs wholeness, social/legal vs moral/philosophical).

    Hasn't the poem just admitted a number of impediments while saying it wasn't going to admit impediments?

    There are impediments on the level of articulation (as the line stumbles over "admit impediments," and when it gets to "impediments," the line stops dead and has to start on another tack, "Love"), on the level of cognitive flow, on the level of moral reality, and also on the level of cogency -- for, after all, the world of the judicial ('confess', impediments , and also marriage, a legal act) has control over bodies and property, not over minds, and the poem has referred us to a marriage of minds .


    The phrase itself the marriage of true minds implicitly admits an impediment.

    This impediment is the body, which is admitted but denied by the word impediment with its root reference to stumbling feet but its usage in conceptual ways, and which is implied by "marriage."

    The phrase "marriage of true minds" enters the whole question of the body by being explicit about the marriage of minds, whereas marriage itself is a union of bodies and property.

    The body is also entered through the contemporary uses of the word impediment as a physical defect or impairment, as a speech defect, as baggage.

    The body is admitted by marriage most strongly through the fact that marriage is a social act (sanctified by the Church, the Body of Christ, and only legal when witnessed by others, bodily presences), through the realm of the legal, the control of bodies, and through the legitimation of marriage, as a marriage which was not consummated, an interesting concept in itself, was considered not to be a marriage.


    There is yet another impediment in the sentence.

    The word "true" in reference to minds suggests of course straightness or levelness, body values, but it suggests by exclusion the unstraightness of mind that the true is structured against and includes by difference.

    If the speaker has to say "true minds" then there are untrue minds, so we have to ask what the 'mind' is here that is being married, what the nature of mind is.

    The word cannot refer to some abstract, non-physical value or being if mind can be unstraight, morally unsound, not on the level, therefore fallen, therefore (as fallen) in the world of action and conflict and thus of the body.

    But "mind" is obviously opposed to the body, and the body is an impediment.

    The sentence's play of meaning forces us inexorably back to the centrality of the body, and questions the status of mind .


    There is another impediment that the poem admits from the very beginning: after all, who is to let or not let him admit impediments? (Startling enough, in Shakespeare's time a "let" was a hindrance, an impediment).

    There is someone who can stop him from not admitting impediments, otherwise he would not have said "Let me not"; a world of power and restriction peeks forth, qualifying the apparent freedom the line claims.

    As well, "Let me not," with its implicit emotional appeal, takes us back psychically to the world of restriction, prohibition, forbidding, in its colloquial force and its imperative, demanding tone, to the two-year old's universe, it is evocation therefore of narcissism, of the taboo, of the root conflict of social life and personal identity, and thus enters us into a world of meaning which itself on the surface sorts oddly with the social/legal language that follows.


    There is in the sentence as a counter-current a narcissism, the juvenile self-aggrandizement of a speaker who thinks he could in fact stop the marriage of true minds.

    But if anyone can stop the marriage of true minds, as obviously he believes that they can (or he can), then it is probably because the marriage of true minds does depend on the powers of property, the body, physical and social force, and so the line really does not in fact claim the power or liberty of the spiritual nature of humans, as an unsuspecting reading might assume, but claims instead the power of the physical and judicial.

    This may well what the line really confesses or, to put it another way, the reality that the ideological structure masks: that the social, judicial, physical elements of our world do in fact have the force over a union of persons that the line denies that they do, and perhaps that in point of fact a person is comprised of these physical, social, legislative elements, these worlds of discourse, of the constitutive imaginary.

    The case could be made that the idealism of the apparent meaning of the line, which depends on there being real, isolatable, inviolate minds is what is ultimately undermined.


    Not only does this sentence launch us on a strange journey of oppositions and contradictions, but it enters us into whole worlds of discourse and concern -- the long philosophical debates about mind as opposed to the body, the place of the power of the judicial in the world of body and mind, the sociality of the individual, the nature of marriage and what it entails, the physicality of marriage both sexually and legally and the relation of that physicality to the moral world, issues of moral freedom, of issues of what constitutes the good.

    These differing but implicated worlds, with their differing assumptions, language uses and emotional resonances--importantly including the poetic expressions of theses debates--become part of the meaning of the line.

August 6, 2005 at 03:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Boot your own car


I love this 'cause it turns things upside down.

Instead of emerging from wherever you were having a great time to find a Denver Boot on your car rendering it undriveable, you put a boot on before you go off for the night.

Seems to me far preferable to the various useless steering wheel locks and car alarms that nobody pays any attention to anyway anymore.

And I wonder what a cop, planning to put a boot on a car, would think when he saw there was already one there?

Is it possible that this device, in addition to being an anti–theft security measure, might also cause a policeman to not ticket you because you're already booted?

I guess the only way to find out is to buy one and see what happens.

    From the website:

    Secure your vehicle in seconds.

    Our hardened steel wheel lock offers instant anti–theft security wherever you park.

    Simply clamp on the lightweight device, turn the key and go.

    The lock is pick– and drill–resistant and can't be frozen with Freon.

    Its weather–resistant protective coating won't wear out — or scratch — your wheels.

$129 here for the red standard version (up to 11.5" wide tires)


and $139 for the larger (orange) truck model which fits up to 12.5" tires.

August 6, 2005 at 02:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

BehindTheMedspeak: Melanoma is not becoming more common



How can this be?

Everyone knows that the incidence of malignant melanoma (above) has skyrocketed in recent decades, a result of the increase in UV light reaching the Earth's surface due to loss of the ozone layer.


I mean, those are facts, not hypotheses, right?

Maybe not.

A study by scientists at Dartmouth University Medical School, published in the current (August 4) issue of the British Medical Journal, suggests that the incidence of malignant melanoma, the most feared of all skin cancers because of its propensity to spread before being diagnosed, has remained esssentially stable over the past 30 years.

Let's look at the numbers upon which the scientists based their conclusions.

1) In 2002 the incidence of malignant melanoma was six times that in 1950. (Keep reading.)

2) Between 1986 and 2001, the average rate of skin biopsy among people 65 and over in 9 geographical areas of the U.S. increased 2.5–fold.

3) Over this time, the average incidence of melanoma increased 2.4–fold.

4) The new cases found were virtually all early stage cancers.

5) The overall melanoma death rate remained stable.

The researchers concluded that the increased incidence of melanoma was largely the result of increased diagnosic scrutiny, not the result of an increase in the incidence of melanoma.

In other words, if you look with a higher powered lens, you're going to find more detail — but not more objects that you could otherwise see with the naked eye.

The standard mnemonic for melanoma surveillance is ABCD:

A = Asymmetry:

B = Borders (irregular):

C = Color (various):

D = Diameter (larger than a pencil):


The melanoma study cited above reminds me of the raging debate about prostate cancer and PSA: many of the nation's urologists believe a high PSA is bad and mandates surgical removal of the prostate; another large group of specialists believe prostate cancer to be a normal accompaniment of aging and that many more men die with than of prostate cancer: they advocate doing nothing in the asymptomatic patient.

August 6, 2005 at 12:41 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

3M Document Wedge


Spring–action clip secures documents and holds up to 20 at a time.

"Holds varied paper sizes such as letter, legal and A4 in portrait or landscape orientation."

Small, compact design is weighted to prevent tipping and unobtrusive on desktop.

"Also great for phone messages and notes."

4.9" x 7.2" x 1.7".


$4.53 here.

August 6, 2005 at 11:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

How to hack an elevator


Turns out that if something's got electronics inside it's hackable.

This interesting tidbit arrived yesterday: seems you can put some elevators into "Express" mode by pressing the "Door Close" and your floor number button of choice simultaneously.

This directs the car to your floor without any intervening stops.

Nice — if it works.

Have to try this out next time I'm near an elevator.

According to thedamnblog.com, this hack has been tested and worked on the following elevators:

Otis (Except those made in 1992)

Dover (Model numbers EL546 And ELOD862)

Note that on some elevators the option to use this Easter Egg of sorts has been disabled by the elevator mechanic or building maintenance.


[via Clive Thompson's collisiondetection]

August 6, 2005 at 10:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Fun with electricity: tricked–out extension cords


Four outlet extension cord (above) extends up to five feet.

Use the length you need and conceal the rest.

The 45° right–angle plug lies close to the wall to maintain that low profile look so often sought yet so seldom achieved in things electrical.

$19.98 here. (Item #23890)


But perhaps mademoiselle prefers something in a wall–mount?

No problema.

Extend–A–Cord (below)


adds outlets and a 6-foot–long, built–in retractable extension cord to an ordinary wall outlet.


• Cord retractor button

• Re–settable circuit breaker

• Indicator light

7.5" x 5.5" x 2.5".

$29.98 here. (Item #23275)

August 6, 2005 at 09:01 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

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