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Tag Archives: clarification

Don’t we all feel smarter now?

Teddy bears and other toys kill more people than REAL bears.

Ants stretch and yawn when they wake up.

It is believed that Shakespeare was 46 around the time that the King James Version of the Bible was written. In Psalms 46, the 46th word is shake and the 46th word from the last word is spear.

Q is the only letter that never appears in the name of an US State.

A 12-year-old’s science project showed that Fast food ice was in fact dirtier than toilet water.

“Eleven plus Two” and “Twelve plus One” both equal 13 and both have 13 letters. In fact they both have THE SAME 13 letters.

“Silent” and “listen” are spelled with the same letters.

“W” is the only letter in the English alphabet that is more than one syllable.

A way you can tell if you’re whispering or not is to put your hand at your throat. If you feel vibrations, you’re talking. If you don’t, you’re whispering.

The voice of Mickey Mouse for 32 years, and the current voice of Minnie Mouse were actually married in real life.

In 1898, 14 years before the Titanic sank, Morgan Robertson wrote a book about a ship called the “Titan” that crashed into an iceberg and sank.

Tomatoes and cucumbers are fruits, not vegetables.

A penny is worth 1 cent but it costs 1.7 cents to make it.

LOL isn’t just laugh out loud. LOL is also “fun” in Dutch.

No matter how hard you squeeze the two ends of an egg, it will NEVER break.

If you put two straws in your mouth: one inside a drink and one outside it, you won’t be able to drink through either straw.

A piece of paper can’t be folded in half more than 7 times .

No word in the English language rhymes with purple, orange, month or silver.

Chewing gum can keep you from crying when cutting onions.

Months that begin on a Sunday will always have a “Friday the 13th”.

A mosquito is more likely to bite a blonde than a brunette.

There are 293 ways to make change for a dollar.

In New York, the penalty for jumping off a building more than 50 ft without a permit is death.

Elephants are the only land mammals that cannot jump.

A strawberry is not an actual berry, but a banana is.

You can’t hum while holding your nose closed.

The sentence “The quick brown fox jumps over a lazy dog” uses every letter of the alphabet.

Eating celery is technically exercise. When you eat celery, you burn more calories than you consume.

A female platypus sweats milk.

‘Racecar’ is spelled the same forwards and backwards.

‘Uncopyrightable’ is the longest word in the English language that doesn’t repeat a letter once.

Penguins cannot walk backwards.

In 1963, baseball pitcher Gaylord Perry remarked, ‘They’ll put a man on the moon before I hit a home run.’ On July 20, 1969, just minutes after Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon, Gaylord Perry hit his first home run.

Vending machines kill four times more people each year than sharks do.

When you put a seashell next to your ear, it’s the sound of your blood surging in your veins, not the ocean.

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Wow, don’t you feel smarter now? Yeah, me neither. But, hey, at least it’s entertaining, right? I mean, I’m still thinking about the tiny ants stretching and yawing early in the morning. So cute. Now, tell the truth, did you also try to hum holding your nose closed? It’s like the licking your own elbow thing. Try it. Then tell me how it goes.

Your turn now. Tell me a useless fact that is not on this list. I dare you. Come on, it’s easy, I have almost nothing here.

 

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Have you heard of Sartalics?

Not too long ago I was complaining about the difficulties of conveying sarcasm in writing. Now I find out three interns are attempting to solve this problem with Sartalics! Sartalics is a reverse italics font, which is just like italics but leaning left instead of right.

To make their campaign known, the interns are gathering a Twitter mob of 10,000 people to simultaneously tweet at tech giants Yahoo, Google, Twitter, Facebook, Microsoft, Tumblr, YouTube and Apple. The tweet “@(company name and person in charge of decisions at said company) needs a sarcasm font style option way more than another layout update! #nosarcasm.” will be sent automatically when the campaign hits 10,000 participants. Last I saw, the Sartalics twitter account had 2,304 followers already.

Let’s all join the twitterblitz for Sartalics!

 

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Reading, cooking and playing pranks, that’s what vacations are all about.

Right now I’m enjoying some vacation time, and that means visiting my home country, my family, my friends, and my cats. My days are filled with reading some new stories and re-reading old ones, cooking with mom a few of my favorite dishes, and obeying my cats wishes of when and for how long to pet them.

But that’s another story. Let’s go back to cooking. The other day we were able to verify my grandma’s been senile for a very long time. We were using a handwritten recipe book my grandma wrote for me a few years ago. It’s full of dead people’s recipes. Well, my grandma wouldn’t say it like that, but let’s face it, most of our ancestors are no longer breathing.

Anyway, although I love my grandma’s effort in putting all the recipes together for me, I do have to question her at times. I think she forgets I’m not really that used to being in the kitchen and am not sure how to caramelize a pan with no ingredients listed or steps to follow (I do know now and I have to say it’s easier than it sounds).

But some of her recipes are also missing a few basic steps, probably because they were too obvious for her. She doesn’t tell you to bake things, for instance. How long and at what temperature to bake something? Oh, please, of course she doesn’t tell you that! How dare you ask!

Now, the best part was to throw away a whole batch of cream because it was not thickening, just to realize soon afterwards that we were supposed to add the egg yolks before, not after cooking the cream as specified in my grandma’s recipe.

Another important lesson I learned that day: do not try to be funny when your mother asks you if you know how to do something. She starts getting upset, you can’t stop laughing, then you try to make another joke and end up laughing and crying uncontrollably in front of the freezer.

Good times. Good times indeed.

Do you think that’s why she decided to wake me up from a nap using a spray bottle? Nah, of course not. She wouldn’t be seeking revenge, right? Right?

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Look! A giant guinea pig!

A day at the zoo with a 4-year-old:

Boy – Look! A giant guinea pig!

Me – Where? (Trying to see what was behind the capybara only to realize that that was the giant guinea pig he was referring to.)

The 120 lb animal now to be known as giant guinea pig.

I guess he’s right, capybaras do look like giant guinea pigs.

I’m not a 2 lb capybara, I swear.

And they are related, so…

 

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As soon as you stop wanting something…

The hard part is to sound convincing enough for long enough time so your mind will be tricked into believing you no longer want the thing you once wanted.

This is like when someone asks you not to think of an elephant. Your brain automatically forms an image of an elephant even before registering the fact that you’re not supposed to think of one.

Oy vey.

 

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Finding licensed images

I guess we could say it’s common knowledge that we should not use someone’s work without their consent. However, what are the rules for using images found on the internet? If someone puts an image on the internet and I find it through a search engine, doesn’t it mean it’s okay to use it? Doesn’t it mean the author is already allowing you to use the image if it’s online for all to see?

No. It’s not okay to share or alter any images on the internet unless you have permission for it. You have to either use images that were approved by their creators for sharing (or altering, if that’s what you’re looking for) or pay to use the image. Nice, huh?

Anyway, I’ve been reading about it since yesterday and I’ve collected a bunch of info. Basically if you use the Creative Commons Search you’re safe. You type what you’re looking for in the search box, check the boxes for commercial purposes and/or modify them (if necessary) and choose which library or search engine you’d like to get your image from. I’ve been using Flickr and Google Images to find options for my past posts (yep, I’ve been updating them since yesterday, trying to change them all to licensed images).

If you want to understand a little more about how this all works, you should read Meghan Ward’s Where to Get Photos For Your Blog. Ward teaches blogging and social media classes at the San Francisco Writer’s Grotto, so she knows what she’s talking about.

Another good post on the subject is Susan Gunelius’s How to Find and Source Images for Your Blog. Gunelius also gives you a list of other places where you can get your images.

And remember: you should always give credit to the creator of the image. Always.

[Image credit: Marta St▲rbucks]

 

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Translation: not as easy as it looks

Translation is the process of translating words or text from one language into another. It’s a written or spoken rendering of the meaning of a word, speech, book, or other text, in another language. It sounds pretty simple, right?

But translation is much more than that. It’s not only translating words, but communicating the meaning of a word using an equivalent in another language. Some words are easy, right? Colors, for example. Black will always be black, green will always be green, and blue will always be blue. Right? Not really.

How about feeling blue? The person is not blue per se, but we do associate the color blue with the way the person is feeling. And how about the expression green with envy? You probably can even imagine someone’s face getting green in this case, but is this the same in other languages? How about if you heard someone saying purple with envy? Would that sound right to you? Well, it is the equivalent to green with envy in Portuguese.

Translating a text (any type of text) requires a great deal of knowledge and adaptation. The translator has to adapt the sentence and use the meaning of the words or expressions, not their literal translation. Context is another thing to pay attention to. Have you ever tried to use free online translators? They do help, but unless you have at least some knowledge of both languages, you have to be careful, or you could end up offending someone by accident.

When in doubt, ask for help.

 

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