Monday, February 26, 2007

Handy Herbs and Spices

Fennel - antioxidant, antiinflammatory, aid for gas and indigestion, cancer preventative.

Garlic - protects against gastrointestinal and colorectal cancers, aged garlic helps prevent cardiovascular disease, contains loads of antimicrobial compounds

Thyme - immune system enhancer, may increase the amount of omega-3 fatty acids present in kidney and brain cells (this is a good thing), excellent antioxidant, antibacterial and antispasmodic properties

Cinnamon - good source of maganese, iron, and calcium, "works wonders for theat after-eating bloated feeling", lowers blood sugar when consumed daily (about a teaspoon), may reduce cholesterol and tryglyceride levels

Ginger - antiinflammatory and circulation booster, high in potassium, AMAZING for upset stomachs, not to exceed more than 10 grams fresh(or 4 grams dried) per day or "gastric upset" will ensue

Rosemary - increases blood flow to the brain (in ancient Greece, students stuck it in their hair while studying), anti-inflammatory, immune booster, good source of iron, potassium, and calcium

Cayenne pepper - Excellent source of Vitamin A (an antioxidant, in case you wondered), boosts circulation, fights infections, aids digestion, boost metabolism, pain-reliever (contains capsaicin, which kills the neurons that cause pain)

Cilantro - body revitalizer, counters indigestion, removes toxic metals such as mercury from the body (especially important after getting a tattoo involving green ink)

Peppermint - stomach soother (due to it's high concentration of menthol, which also soothes muscles), rich in nutrients (beta-carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin C), but can worsen heartburn, so don't use if you're prone.

Basil - antibacterial, antiinflammatory, contains both beta-carotene and magnesium. Picking up some basil essential oil and using about one percent oil to 99 percent water when washing fruits and vegetables (because it is an antimicrobial wonder), or put a few drops on minor cuts or scrapes

Tumeric - also known as curry powder, very potent antiinflammatory and antioxidant, activates cellular defense mechanisms in genes

Chocolate and Coffee

Both crops naturally grow in the shade. But to meet increasing demand, farmers favor sun-loving varieties, resulting in clear cutting and heavy pesticide use. Cacao, which is used to make chocolate, is one of the world's most heavily sprayed crops, according to United Kingdom's Soil Association. The Commission for Environmental Cooperation tells us that if half of North America's 15 million college students chose organic, shade-grown coffee, they would prevent 3,885 tons of chemical fertilizers and 660 tons of pesticides from poisoning the Earth.

The organic standard DOESN'T cover fair trade. To ensure just compensation for farmers, look for both the Fair Trade Certified label and organic seal on chocolate an coffee. Don't get down about not changing your whole diet instantaneously. One step at a time is certainly progress, and much less stressful. Just learn about something, correct your life accordingly, and move on. Don't let it get you down. Every little bit help a WHOLE lot.

Saturday, February 17, 2007


I've been having really hardcore nightmares lately. Like, say, every night for the past week or two. I am exhausted all the time because my sleep is terrible, even though I get a lot of it. I had a "Moved to Chicago" nightmare, a "Kicked out of the House" nightmare, and a "Your Family Got Murdered" nightmare, among others.

Apparently acute stress causes nightmares, among a million other different not-quite-proven causes. I'm not entirely sure how to be "not stressed" mentally so that I can get some rest. RAWR!
The one night I slept wonderfully, Dan was on one side and Steve was on the other, and I think it was some sort of "I'm protected and comfortable and warm and nothing can hurt me" sort of thing going on.
I've tried various locations, clothing, blankets, tiredness, hungriness. I'm at a loss. Anyone have any ideas how to rest nightmare-free?

Buffalo Chicken Dip

Here is the easy appetizer recipe. Also, subbing hot sauce with BBQ is great. Indeed.

Buffalo chicken dip

2 cooked chicken breasts - diced/shredded
1 block cream cheese
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 cup hot sauce (Tobasco, or Frank's)
2/3 cup ranch dressing

Put all together and then microwave until all cheese is melted. Mix together and serve with tortilla chips

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Valentine's Day

Wow. I think I might be one of those girls who hates Valentine's Day.

Possible Origins :

The roots of St. Valentine's Day lie in the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, which was celebrated on Feb. 15. For 800 years the Romans had dedicated this day to the god Lupercus. On Lupercalia, a young man would draw the name of a young woman in a lottery and would then keep the woman as a sexual companion for the year.

Pope Gelasius I was, understandably, less than thrilled with this custom. So he changed the lottery to have both young men and women draw the names of saints whom they would then emulate for the year (a change that no doubt disappointed a few young men). Instead of Lupercus, the patron of the feast became Valentine. For Roman men, the day continued to be an occasion to seek the affections of women, and it became a tradition to give out handwritten messages of admiration that included Valentine's name.

There was also a conventional belief in Europe during the Middle Ages that birds chose their partners in the middle of February. Thus the day was dedicated to love, and people observed it by writing love letters and sending small gifts to their beloved. Legend has it that Charles, duke of Orleans, sent the first real Valentine card to his wife in 1415, when he was imprisoned in the Tower of London. (He, however, was not beheaded, and died a half-century later of old age.)

Just one of many stories of how Valentine's Day started. I celebrated by stepping on a pen and stabbing my foot, and collecting the blood in a vial so that if I ever have a really dark and gothy boyfriend I can make him a necklace. Hehe. Like freakin' Billy Bob and Angelina.

Seriously though guys. It's against my rules to be bummed out today. Call me and make me laugh! Pull me out of my ridiculous funk! Find me a cute person!

I guess I've discovered I can revolve my life around me and everything is cool. Doesn't mean I don't want to talk to someone everyday and have a person to melt at that won't burn me. Ah well.

I did get roses though. First time (excluding my dad) I have on the flower-giving-megaday of the day of the year. It funny and cliche, but I LOVE GETTING ROSES.

Perfect mold-fitting femininity. Wouldn't Freud be proud.

Sunday, February 11, 2007


How come being depressed is so draining? You don't really feel like doing anything, so you're not really exerting yourself. Yet you are perpetually tired.

I wish summer would come. My body is missing the sunshine-induced happy-chemical-boosters. I'm thinking I want to move so bad in part because I hate the winter these days, not having my dad haul us out to ski or snowboard or go up north or build snow castles or snowmobile. Without winter sports, winter is merely a large pain.

Maybe with spring around the corner, I'll have a new outlook on life also on it's way that isn't quite so dreary.
Yep. It isn't me going crazy and anxious because there are things I can't fix in my life. There will always be things I can't fix, moving away doesn't fix anything, as I am, contrary to popular belief, perfectly aware of. I think, honestly, it's just the winter.

I'm going to a tanning booth later this week for ten or fifteen minutes. Maybe the UV light will do something positive. I just hate cancer boxes and I hate tan people. But not as much as I hate being sad and depressed and drained all the time.

I'll let you know if it does anything. Is this what is called taking one for the team?

Thursday, February 08, 2007

My paper for philosophy. Who am I, and how do I know?

I am a coat rack. The coats I hold make up who I am. I am a daughter, a sister, and artist, a female, a writer, and a dreamer. Who we are is defined by what we are. Every human has a different set of coats. Sure, there are daughters in this room, but every daughter is different, perhaps all a blue coat, say, but with different fabric and different buttons, a collar, or a fleece lining. Humans are shaped by experience, and by defining different aspects of an object, or a human, we are able to organize and understand what is ultimately unfathomable. When you take away my coats, one at a time, I am still a coat rack. So, you say, you are a dreamer, writer, daughter, and all that, but what else? We don’t know. I am ineffable. Half of my genes from my mother, half from my father. I’m a fully functioning, living, breathing organism, made up of multiples cells, organs, molecules. Yes, yes, but that’s all just scientific mumbo jumbo, right? Is that really who I am? No. It is what I am. Who I am can only be explained piece by piece, defining one “what“ after another, but I am infinitely full of “whats” . Spend millennia observing only me, and you will not know who I am. I’ve had nineteen years in my constant presence, and I don’t know. I am an object to reflect the glory of God. Really? Well, maybe…but that is still what I could be, not who I am. I am, in the end, only a conglomeration of “whats”, big and small, significant or microscopic.
With that said, I think Descartes viewed humans as machines, with a mind and a body . We exist. Who are we? He doesn’t say. What are we? A group of objects. A head, hands, fingers, and feet. We possess senses which God gave us, but we are subject to deception from what we interpret through those senses. He states that he is a man, therefore, to him, I suppose I am a woman, but he would say that neither of us are rational animals, in that both “rational” and “animal” are as yet undefined, and therefore who is he to claim to be one? Descartes decided, in trying to define himself (also using the question “What am I?” as his basis, not the elusive “Who”) to use only that which his mind perceived of himself. That he had a body, a countenance, and also that he walked, perceived, and thought. Cogito ergo sum. I think, therefore I am. Such a powerful phase, but to what end? Proving, philosophically, his existence, but I am unconcerned with his existence. Who exists? As he would say, a certain figure, in a certain place, therefore excluding all other figures not in that place? In that case, who am I, and how do I know? I am me. Because I am here. A certain figure, in a certain place.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Randomness That Temporarily Stopped My Glumness

The longest one-syllable word in the English language is
"Dreamt" is the only English word that ends in the letters
Almonds are members of the peach family.
The symbol on the "pound" key (#) is called an octothorpe.
The dot over the letter 'i' is called a tittle.
Ingrown toenails are hereditary.
The word "set" has more definitions than any other word in the
English language.
"Underground" is the only word in the English language that
begins and ends with the letters "und."
There are only four words in the English language which end
in"-dous" tremendous, horrendous, stupendous, and hazardous.
The longest word in the English language, according to the
Oxford English Dictionary,
is pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconiosis.
The only other word with the same amount of letters is
pneumonoultramicroscopicsilicovolcanoconioses, its plural.
The longest place-name still in use is
ngahoronukupokaiwenuakitanatahu, a New Zealand hill.
Los Angeles's full name is "El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la
Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula" and can be
abbreviated to 3.63% of its size, "L.A."
A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.
An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain.
Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.
In most advertisments, including newspapers, the time displayed
on a watch is 10:10.
Alfred Hitchcock didn't have a belly button.It was eliminated
when he was sewn up after surgery.
Telly Savalas and Louis Armstrong died on their birthdays.
Donald Duck's middle name is Fauntleroy.
Al Capone's business card said he was a used furniture dealer.
The muzzle of a lion is like a fingerprint - no two lions have
the same pattern of whiskers.
Steely Dan got their name from a sexual device depicted in the
book 'The Naked Lunch'.
A pregnant goldfish is called a twit.
The Ramses brand condom is named after the great phaoroh Ramses
II who fathered over 160 children.
There is a seven letter word in the English language that
contains ten words without rearranging any of its letters,
"therein" the, there, he, in, rein, her, here, ere, therein, herein.
Duelling is legal in Paraguay as long as both parties are
registered blood donors.
John Larroquette of "Night Court" and "The John Larroquette
Show" was the narrator of "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre."
The characters Bert and Ernie on Sesame Street were named after
Bert the cop and Ernie the taxi driver in
Frank Capra's "Its A Wonderful Life"
A goldfish has a memory span of three seconds.
It's impossible to sneeze with your eyes open.
It was discovered on a space mission that a frog can throw
up.The frog throws up its stomach first, so the stomach is dangling out of
it's mouth.Then the frog uses its forearms to dig out all of the
stomach's contents and then swallows the stomach back down again.
Cranberries are sorted for ripeness by bouncing them; a fully
ripened cranberry can be dribbled like a basketball.
The male gypsy moth can "smell" the virgin female gypsy moth
from 1.8 miles away.
The letters KGB stand for Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti.
The name for Oz in the "Wizard of Oz" was thought up when the
creator, Frank Baum, looked at his filing cabinet and saw A-N, and O-Z,
hence "Oz."
The microwave was invented after a researcher walked by a radar
tube and a chocolate bar melted in his pocket.
'Stewardesses' is the longest word that is typed with only the
left hand.
To "testify" was based on men in the Roman court swearing to a
statement made by swearing on their testicles.
The combination "ough" can be pronounced in nine different
ways.The following sentence contains them all "A rough-coated,
dough-faced, thoughtful ploughman strode through the streets of Scarborough;
after falling into a slough, he coughed and hiccoughed."
The only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a
letter is uncopyrightable.
Facetious and abstemious contain all the vowels in the correct
order, as does arsenious, meaning "containing arsenic."
Emus and kangaroos cannot walk backwards, and are on the
Australian coat of arms for that reason.
Cats have over one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs only have
about ten.
The word "Checkmate" in chess comes from the Persian phrase
"Shah Mat," which means "the king is dead".
The reason firehouses have circular stairways is from the days
of lore when the engines were pulled by horses.The horses were stabled
on the ground floor and figured out how to walk up straight

Who am I and how do I know?

For my philosophy class, the title of this post is my question. I have eight hours before I have to present it to my class, and I don't know who I am. I did once. But not anymore.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Pocket Guides

I have secretly harbored a really big pouty-left-out-feeling about when everyone made Pocket Guides to themselves, and never a) explained to me how to participate and b) never gave me one

So. I'm making one. I'm making up my own rules. And I'm giving it to whoever I want.

Fuck you.

Friday, February 02, 2007


I started worrying today about the color black. It all started when I had a random thought something along the lines of "A woman comes up to you all nervous looking and asks "why do you wea the color of death?"

As usual, I dismissed it, as most random thoughts are just that, random.

But later I started wondering if the world would somehow be better/brighter if maybe people didn't wear so much black. Yeah, it is a color that doesn't nesseccarilly look BAD on people, but it doesn't really do much for anyone either.

Then I started wondering why black was the color of death, because really nobody turns black unless I guess burned people, but ash gets eaten up in the general dirt and whatnot of the world. So wouldn't it make more sense if the color of death was brown? Or grey I guess?

But brown represents the Earth and goodness and life and creation, but life wouldn't exist without death, it's that whole dialectic thought thing from Dillon's class coming back to haunt me.

Brown should be life AND death. Like a cycle. Like how everything is. Or how I think everything is. But it isn't.

And I'm starting to think black might not be a color at all, like...NOT a color. The color of darkness represented by a physical "-ness" so that our sorry little percentage-of-working-brain-matter can handle the idea and think about it with the greater implications of omnipresent nonexistence.

I believe I may not be making sense. Ah well. Black, color or not, real or not, seems to be bothering me.