Sunday, 29 December 2013

Order of the Holy Spirit

The Order of the Holy Spirit, also known as the Order of the Knights of the Holy Spirit, was an Order of Chivalry under the French Monarchy.

Due to the blue riband from which the Cross of the Holy Spirit was hung, the Knights became known as "Les Cordon Bleus". Over time, this expression was extended to refer to other distinctions of the highest class - for example, Cordon Bleu cooking and Blue Riband sporting events.


Friday, 27 December 2013

cordon (bleu)


  • a line of police, sentinels, military posts, warships, etc., enclosing or guarding an area.
  • a cord or braid worn for ornament or as a fastening.
  • a ribbon worn usually diagonally across the breast as a badge of a knightly or honorary order.



cordon bleu

French for 'blue ribbon'. The Cordon Bleu was the highest order of chivalry under the Bourbon kings. It has since been used for other first-class distinctions. The term has migrated into the language as a figurative acclamation rather than actual decoration for high quality, especially for chefs.


Monday, 23 December 2013

Camera obscura

The camera obscura (Latin; camera for "vaulted chamber/room", obscura for "dark", together "darkened chamber/room"; plural: camera obscuras or camerae obscurae) is an optical device that projects an image of its surroundings on a screen.

It is used in drawing and for entertainment, and was one of the inventions that led to photography and the camera.

The device consists of a box or room with a hole in one side.

Light from an external scene passes through the hole and strikes a surface inside, where it is reproduced, upside-down, but with color and perspective preserved.

The image can be projected onto paper, and can then be traced to produce a highly accurate representation.

The largest camera obscura in the world is on Constitution Hill in Aberystwyth, Wales.


Saturday, 21 December 2013

Types of suit checks

Checks come in a number of different styles, though the best known among them is probably the plaid. Plaid in American English is synonymous with tartan, the check patterns most closely associated with Scottish clans. In British English, particularly in Scotland, plaid refers to a thick tartan cloth used both as a blanket and thrown over the shoulder when wearing a kilt. What plaid is not synonymous with is check, which describes any fabric with crossing vertical and horizontal stripes. With the exception of a legitimate Scottish tartan worn as part of a formal occasion, checks are always less formal than solids or stripes.

Glen Check

While tartans are arguably the most familiar checks to most individuals, Glen check is likely the most common for suits. This check, often called Prince of Wales check, resembles a tartan, though it is primarily monochromatic. It utilizes bands of vertical and horizontal stripes which, when viewed as a unit, create a wider check effect in the fabric. Glen check has deep associations with the country and weekend wear – having been created for use by English nobles in Scotland who lacked a family tartan – though it is appropriate for most semi-formal occasions. It may be frowned upon in certain professions with a particularly strict dress code, but should be an acceptable if not welcome divergence for most men.


Another check option is windowpane, a much more bold option where the stripes forming the check are far apart, creating a checkerboard effect. Full windowpane suits are not frequently found anymore, though windowpane sports jackets may appear from time to time. A heavy dose of confidence and a certain amount of panache is required to carry off this kind of daring pattern.

Herringbone and Houndstooth

A more subtle option is the herringbone, a small arrow-shaped pattern most often found in heavy woven fabrics like tweed. Herringbone, like Glen check, is an appropriate pattern for most occasions, though because it usually adorns heavy fabrics, it is most often found on winter and country suits. Similar is houndstooth, which somewhat resembles a saw-blade, a pattern far more common on sports jackets than full suits.

Bird's Eye and Nailhead

Somewhere between solids and stripes in formality is bird's eye or nailhead, which examined closely has the appearance of tiny dots of a lighter color on a darker background. A bird’s eye suit generally appears as a solid somewhere in between the two colors, similar to the effect of an Oxford cloth shirt. Nail-head is appropriate in any occasion where stripes would be, and can be substituted for solids on all but the most formal of occasions.

There are a number of other patterns – bolder varieties of check, diagonals, argyle, paisley, Madras – though they are not to be found on suits, at least not on suits worn by a gentleman. These are things to be considered in the realm of shirts, ties, and socks, which will be taken up in future, along with the true pattern art-form: matching two or more.


Friday, 20 December 2013

What is a Typosquatter?

A typosquatter registers domain names which closely resemble high-traffic websites, but feature common misspellings and consumer confusions. A typosquatter might register several domain names like,, and so on. Customers seeking the real website may accidentally type the wrong URL, which directs them to one of the typosquatter's own websites. These websites are usually nothing more than a collection of lucrative click-thru advertisements. In some cases, the sites are pornographic. Even using .net instead of .com can lead to a typosquatter's website.

See full artice at

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Peek Freans

Peek Frean is a brand of biscuits and related confectionery. The brand is owned in the UK by United Biscuits, although the Peek Frean name is no longer used in the UK. In the US and Canada the brand is owned by Kraft Foods.

Peek, Frean and Co was established in 1857 in Bermondsey, London by James Peek and George Hender Frean. In 1861, the company started exporting biscuits to Australia and later to other overseas destinations. They moved to a larger plant in Bermondsey in 1866 where they continued baking until the brand was discontinued in 1989.

During the course of its life, the firm's brand name changed from Peek, Frean and Co to Peek Frean (in the early twentieth century) and then to Peek Freans (by the 1970s, the name having been used in the possessive case on products for many years).

See more at

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Earl, Belted Earl

The word Earl is from the Anglo-Saxon magnate known as an ealdorman who was a local ruler.

The original term is from "jarl"- a powerful Viking Noble. Many former Prime Ministers were made earls when they left office.

Until the 17th century an earl was invested by the Sovereign with the sword he wore at his waste - hence the term 'a belted earl'.

Some Scottish earldoms pass through the female line. The present Earl of Mar is a woman.

The eldest son of an earl always bears one of his father's (or mother's) secondary titles. The other sons are 'Hons.' Daughters are styled Lady.

See more at

Friday, 13 December 2013

Selvage and Selvedge

The selvage (US English) or selvedge (British English) is the term for the self-finished edges of fabric.

The selvages keep the fabric from unravelling or fraying.

The selvages are a result of how the fabric is created.

In woven fabric, selvages are the edges that run parallel to the warp (the longitudinal threads that run the entire length of the fabric), and are created by the weft thread looping back at the end of each row.

The terms selvage and selvedge are a corruption of "self-edge", and have been in use since the 16th century.


Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Streisand effect

The Streisand effect is the phenomenon whereby an attempt to hide, remove or censor a piece of information has the unintended consequence of publicizing the information more widely, usually facilitated by the Internet.

It is named after American entertainer Barbra Streisand, whose attempt in 2003 to suppress photographs of her residence inadvertently generated further publicity. Similar attempts have been made, for example, in cease-and-desist letters, to suppress numbers, files and websites. Instead of being suppressed, the information receives extensive publicity and media extensions such as videos and spoof songs, often being widely mirrored across the Internet or distributed on file-sharing networks.

Example - In June 2012, Argyll and Bute council banned a nine-year-old primary school pupil from updating her blog, NeverSeconds, with photos of lunchtime meals served in the school's canteen. The blog, which was already popular, started receiving an immense number of views due to the international media furor that followed the ban. Within days, the council reversed its decision under immense public pressure and scrutiny. After the reversal of the ban, the blog became more popular than it was before.[29]

See more examples at

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Types of suit stripes

Stripes on suits are always vertical, but come in a number of different styles.

The first, foremost, and most classic is the pinstripe. A pinstriped suit, particularly a navy pinstriped suit, is an extremely traditional look, almost a uniform of sorts for the businessman. Pinstripes, as the name suggests, are very narrow though generally prominent stripes, most often in white, although gray is a not-uncommon choice, especially on dark gray or black suits.

These, and all stripes, help to make the wearer appear taller, as they draw the face upwards, and can make a heavyset man appear thinner, by breaking up and drawing attention away from the solid midsection. This is particularly true for thin, close set stripes like the pinstripe.

There are also other stripes, including the thicker chalk stripe, as an option for the gentleman's wardrobe. These stripes, which are generally set farther apart due to their greater width, are significantly less formal than the pinstripe, and while continuing to provide the appearance of increased height, are less appropriate for large men, as they can draw attention to ones girth.


Sunday, 1 December 2013

Horses, Hikers, and Bikers

The first hiking etiquette thing that you need to know is that there is a hierarchy on the trail. Horses have priority, followed by hikers, and then bikers. It’s pretty simple to remember and makes encounters much more pleasant when everyone knows who gets to go first. Always check to see what other kinds of travellers will be sharing the trail with you before you start. If horses or bikes are allowed, then be mentally prepared to encounter them.

See 6 Reminders on Hiking Etiquette at

Friday, 29 November 2013

Nobles, knights, clergy, tradesmen and peasants

In the Middle Ages, there was a definite structure in society.

You were born into a class of people and generally stayed in that class for your entire life.

Working hard did not change your status.

Your clothing, food, marriage, homes, etc., were determined for you.

After the rank of king, the hierarchy was the nobles, the knights, the clergy (religious people), the tradesmen and the peasants.

See more at

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

What is gingham?

Gingham is a type of simple woven cotton or linen cloth, originally with a regular bright coloured stripe but later appearing as a check or plaid pattern.

The colours are commonly blue/white or red/white. This cool, breathable textile varies from medium to light-weight and can range from a very small checked pattern to very large checks.

There is no right or wrong side in gingham as it has the same appearance on both sides. This is due to the fibres already being coloured before they are woven together.

This makes gingham very economical for dress-making or home furnishing.


Monday, 25 November 2013

It's a fair cop

Used just after being caught at something.
Roughly equivalent to "Yes, I did it."
From "cop", to catch.
The full version is "It's a fair cop, guv, you've got me bang to rights".

See full list of Stock British Phrases at

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Langton's ant

Langton's ant is a two-dimensional Turing machine with a very simple set of rules but complicated emergent behaviour.

It was invented by Chris Langton in 1986 and runs on a square lattice of black and white cells.

Squares on a plane are colored variously either black or white. We arbitrarily identify one square as the "ant". The ant can travel in any of the four cardinal directions at each step it takes. The ant moves according to the rules below:

  • At a white square, turn 90° right, flip the color of the square, move forward one unit
  • At a black square, turn 90° left, flip the color of the square, move forward one unit


Thursday, 21 November 2013

The world's largest zip manufacturer

The YKK Group (YKKグループ Waikeikei Gurūpu?) is a Japanese group of manufacturing companies. As the world's largest zipper/zip manufacturer, YKK Group is most famous for making zippers; however, it also manufactures other fastening products, architectural products and industrial machinery.

The initials YKK stand for Yoshida Kōgyō Kabushiki Kaisha (吉田工業株式会社?), Yoshida Manufacturing Corporation.

More than 90% of all zippers in the world are made in over 206 YKK facilities in 68 countries around the world, with the largest factory in Georgia, USA which produces more than 7 million zippers per day.


Tuesday, 19 November 2013

‘You and I’ or ‘You and me’?

To find out whether to use ‘I’ or ‘me’, simply drop the name or pronoun that goes before and and the word and.

Then see if the sentence makes sense.

Example - I made dinner reservations for Rex and I.

Now drop ‘Rex and’ - I made dinner reservations for I.

Now this sentence sounds wrong, so you know it should be me. Let’s fix it - I made dinner reservations for Rex and me.

Bingo! Now it’s correct.

See full article and more examples at

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Duffel / Duffle

Duffel is a municipality in the Belgian province of Antwerp.

The town gives its name to a heavy woollen cloth used to make overcoats, especially for the military, and various kinds of luggage.

Items made from this material are sometimes spelled duffle as in Duffle Coat and Duffle bag.


Friday, 15 November 2013


Catachresis is a the use of word or a figure of speech incorrectly, breaking the rules of usage.

Catachresis can be used in a number of ways, for example:

  • Using a word outside its normal context, where it appears wrong.
  • Creating a contradiction or paradox.
  • Substituting one language element for another.
  • Using mixed metaphor.
  • Using a simile that does not work.


  • Her laughing feet fell overboard with amazement.
  • He looked at the price and his pockets ran dry.
  • She grabbed the bull by the horns of the dilemma.
  • He was as happy as a corpse.

See full article at

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Additives in table salt

Most table salt sold for consumption contain additives which address a variety of health concerns, especially in the developing world. The identities and amounts of additives vary widely from country to country.
  • Iodine and iodide. Iodine is important to prevent the insufficient production of thyroid hormones (hypothyroidism), which can cause goiter, cretinism in children, and myxedema in adults. Iodine-containing compounds are added to table salt. Iodized salt is thus table salt mixed with a minute amount of potassium iodide, sodium iodide, or sodium iodate.
  • Fluoride
  • Anti-caking agents
  • Iron

See full article at

Monday, 11 November 2013

Semantic satiation

Semantic satiation (also semantic saturation) is a psychological phenomenon in which repetition causes a word or phrase to temporarily lose meaning for the listener, who then processes the speech as repeated meaningless sounds.


Here's a fun experiment that you can do, right now, without leaving your computer. Take a two-word expression, any two words, let's say, "divine inspiration," and say it out loud repeatedly.

After the 20th or 30th time, the words will seem like a blur in your head. To an outsider, your words will make sense, but inside you will not be sure about what you are saying.


Saturday, 9 November 2013

Why Are The Numbers On A Dartboard In The Order They Are?

The man who is credited with the ‘invention’ of the numbering sequence of the modern standard dartboard is BRIAN GAMLIN.

Gamlin was a carpenter from Bury in the County of Lancashire, England and came up with the infuriating sequence in 1896, at the age of 44. He died in 1903 before he could patent the idea.

The numbering of a standard dartboard is designed in such a way as to cut down the incidence of ‘lucky shots’ and reduce the element of chance. The numbers are placed in such a way as to encourage accuracy. That’s it. Pure and simple. The placing of small numbers either side of large numbers e.g. 1 and 5 either side of 20, 3 and 2 either side of 17, 4 and 1 either side of 18, punishes inaccuracy. Thus, if you shoot for the 20 segment, the penalty for lack of accuracy or concentration is to land in either a 1 or a 5.

See full article at

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Churchill’s good ideas

Churchill's tendency to conduct strategy by impulse infuriated his advisers.

His chief of staff Alan Brooke complained that every day Churchill had 10 ideas, only one of which was good--and he did not know which one.


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

The Ace of Spades

From 1712 until about 1718, a “duty stamp” was placed on one card in each deck to prove that duty tax had been paid after the wrapper had been discarded. Initially, no standards specified which card would be stamped.

Because the Aces had the most white space of any card, the duty stamp was usually made on one of them. The customary order of cards in a new deck has the Ace of Spades on the face (the top, if the deck is held face-up), so the Ace of Spades was the card most often stamped.

In 1765, the Tax Office began printing Aces of Spades. Playing card manufacturers were not allowed to sell their own. It was a capital offense to forge an Ace of Spades. The designs for the various taxes, based upon the cost of the pack of cards, had an enlarged spade pip in the center of the design. The large spade both clearly identified the card as the Ace of Spades and became part of the official stamp design. This is how the Ace of Spades got a big spade in the middle.

See full article at

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Elements from elements

Chemical elements that can be spelled using element symbols:


See full list at

Saturday, 2 November 2013


Survival Prepping is not just stocking up on supplies but also getting the right frame of mind for when the SHTF.

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”

- Benjamin Franklin


Key Survival Prepping Definitions / Acronyms

  • SHTF – Sh*t Hits The Fan
  • TEOTWAWKI – The End Of The World As We Know It
  • GOOD – Get Out Of Dodge
  • Prepper – One who is planning or preparing for a disaster/emergency
  • BOB – Bug Out Bag (one small bag you can grab with essentials if you have to leave your place immediately) aka SHTF Bag
  • BOL – Bug Out Location
  • WROL – Without Rule Of Law
  • MRE – Meal Ready to Eat
  • SP – Survival Prepping



Friday, 1 November 2013

Types of Spanners and Wrenches

Spanners come in all shapes and sizes, many being developed to deal with a specific job.

By far the most important consideration when using a spanner is to ensure that it fits the nut perfectly.

  • Open ended - 'C' spanner
  • Ring spanner
  • Offset ring spanner
  • Split ring spanner
  • Adjustable spanners
  • Wrench
  • Bulldog spanner
  • Precision adjustable spanner
  • Box spanner
  • Socket
  • Allen key
  • Torque wrench
  • Pipe wrenches
  • Stilson wrench
  • Strap wrench
  • Mole Wrench
  • Tap spanner

See full article at

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Amicable Numbers

In the world of numbers, 220 and 284 are special because they come as a pair.

They are a pair because, if you take all the numbers that divide 220 (1, 2, 4, 5, 10, 11, 20, 22, 44, 55, 110 – but not 220 itself) and add them together you get 284.

However, if you take all the numbers that divide 284 (1, 2, 4, 71, 142 – but not 284 itself) and add them together, you get 220.

These are called Amicable Numbers, and in ancient times these numbers represented mutual harmony, perfect friendship and love.


Tuesday, 29 October 2013

The burning effect of chilli

What is it best to drink to cool the burning sensation of capsaicin?

Milk products cool you off after eating chillies because casein, a protein, breaks the bond between the pain receptors and the capsaicin.

Why are chillies hot?

The heat of the chilli comes from the oil called capsaicin which is present in the chilli. it is found mostly in the seeds and the "ribs" of chilli peppers. capsaicin acts on the same nerves - found in the tongue and the skin - that gives us a sensation of heat. it releases a chemical called "substance p" into the blood which sends signals to the brain, telling it you are eating something hot.

Can you get desensitised to eating chilli?

Yes. tests have showed that with successive exposure to equal concentrations of capsaicin, the sensation of pungency decreases.

How do i get rid of the burning feeling?

If you burn your mouth with chilli, drinking water will do no good because capsaicin is not soluble in water. (it's like trying to wash away grease with water) fat will do the trick - and that means drinking milk, eating yoghurt, ice cream or even peanut butter.

See full FAQ on chilli topics at

Sunday, 27 October 2013

111 - a Nelson

The number 111 is sometimes called a "nelson" (particularly as a score in cricket or darts) after Admiral Nelson, who allegedly only had "One Eye, One Arm, One Ball" near the end of his life. This is sometimes bowdlerized to say that he lost "One Eye, One Arm, One Life" during his naval career.

Another suggestion is that the number is derived from his three great victories, thus Copenhagen, Nile & Trafalgar which gives the sequence "Won - Won - Won".
A score of 111 or multiples thereof (called "double nelson", "triple nelson" etc.) is considered an ill omen in cricket, because the figures "111" resemble a wicket without bails.
In pre-decimalisation days, bankers seem to have called a sum of one pound, one shilling and one penny `Nelson'.


Friday, 25 October 2013

Power law

A power law is a mathematical relationship between two quantities. If the frequency (with which an event occurs) varies as a power of some attribute of that event (e.g. its size), the frequency is said to follow a power law.

For instance, the number of cities having a certain population size is found to vary as a power of the size of the population, and hence follows a power law.


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Otto Rohwedder

Otto, originally a jeweller, was the inventor of the world’s first mechanical sliced bread, which went on sale on July 7 1928,  in Chillicothe, Missouri.

After many setbacks, including a fire which destroyed his first factory as well as blueprints and prototype, he managed to develop a successful process for slicing and wrapping the bread. However sales were slow at first as suspicious consumers were slow to accept a pre-sliced bread, but soon everyone wanted sliced bread. By 1933, only five years after its introduction, American bakeries were turning out more sliced than unsliced bread.

See full article at

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Ways to Annoy People At An Amusement Park

Leave large gaps in between you and the people in front of you while waiting in line.

Offer people money for their spots in line...MONOPOLY money.

Find someone to tell your life story to.

Whisper right in someone's ear, "I know what you did last summer."

See more ways to annoy people at

Monday, 21 October 2013


Mondegreens are a sort of aural malapropism. Instead of saying the wrong word, you hear the wrong word.

The word mondegreen is generally used for misheard song lyrics, although technically it can apply to any speech.


"Excuse me while I kiss this guy."
   "Excuse me while I kiss the sky."
   Purple Haze, Jimi Hendrix


"The girl with colitis goes by."
   "The girl with kaleidoscope eyes."
   Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds, The Beatles


"Are you going to starve an old friend?"
   "Are you going to Scarborough Fair?"
   Scarborough Fair, Simon and Garfunkel


See full list at

Saturday, 19 October 2013

To the strongest …

A month before his 33rd birthday Alexander of Macedonia (Alexander The Great) became ill with a fever and the fever worsened. Soon he was barely able to speak.

He was asked to whom the empire should go Alexander whispered, "To the strongest of course!"

About ten days before he would have become 33 years of age Alexander, the ruler of a world empire he had created himself, died.

See full article at

Thursday, 17 October 2013

The world's largest banknote

To commemorate the Centennial of Independence from more than 300 years of Spanish colonial rule in 1998, the government of the Philippines wanted to do something very special.

It issued the world's largest banknote 355.6 mm by 215.9 mm (14" x 8 1/2"), beating the previous record: China Ming Dynasty 1 Kuan 220 mm x 335mm (8 3/4" x 13 1/4").

Only 1,000 of these notes were issued. Originally offered to collectors at a pre-issue price of 180,000 Piso (US$4175).

See more paper money trivia at

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Types of men’s belts


See full article at

Sunday, 13 October 2013

America's 10 Deadliest Jobs

1. Logging workers
2. Fishers and related fishing workers
3. Aircraft pilot and flight engineers
4. Roofers
5. Structural iron and steel workers
6. Refuse and recyclable material collectors
7. Electrical power-line installers and repairers
8. Drivers/sales workers and truck drivers
9. Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural managers
10. Construction laborers

See more at

Friday, 11 October 2013

Guests, like fish …

Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.

Benjamin Franklin


Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Types of Keys

Single Bitted

The traditional key with one set of cuts on the bitting.

Multi Bitted

A key with several sets of cuts, thus giving them multiple bitting surfaces. Common in high security locks that have auxilliary locking mechanisms, such as a sidebar.


A key with duplicate cuts but only one actual bitting surface, allowing the key to be functional when inserted in any orientation.


A key that has four bittings, giving it a star shaped tip. May not actually use all four, like a convenience key.

Transponder Key

A key that has an electronic transponder in the bow of the key that transmits a code to a receiver in the lock. Most commonly seen in automotive keys. Requires specialized equipment to copy.

Valet Key

A special type of automotive key that can be used by a valet driver. Typically, a valet key can operate the doors and ignition of a car, but can't open the glove compartment or trunk.

Blank Key

A key that has had no bitting cuts applied to it. "Blanks" are a common locksmithing item used for duplicating keys, impressioning, and creating bump keys.


Monday, 7 October 2013

Pimm’s Cups

  • Pimm's No. 1 Cup is based on gin and can be served both on ice or in cocktails.
  • Pimm's No. 2 Cup was based on Scotch whisky. Currently phased out.
  • Pimm's No. 3 Cup is based on brandy. Phased out, but a version infused with spices and orange peel marketed as Pimm's Winter Cup is now seasonally available.
  • Pimm's No. 4 Cup was based on rum. Currently phased out.
  • Pimm's No. 5 Cup was based on rye whiskey. Currently phased out.
  • Pimm's No. 6 Cup is based on vodka. It is still produced, but in small quantities.

See more at

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Mad Hatter Day – 10/6

Mad Hatter Day is October 6th!

Celebrated by Disney fans across the world, this day is dedicated to the Mad Hatter from Alice In Wonderland.

Are you curious as to why October 6th was the chosen date?

10/6 are the numbers written on the card on the Mad Hatter’s hat. The card or label on the Hatter’s hat reads “In this style 10/6″, which refers to 10 shillings and six pence – the price of the hat in pre-decimalized British money. The figure acts as a visual indication of the hatter’s trade. In the UK, 10/6 would point to the tenth of June, but since the day was founded in America it is the 6th of October.

See full article at

and see the Village Hat Shop at

Thursday, 3 October 2013

BOB, EDC, GHB and house kits

BOB ( BUG OUT BAG) this is your I’m leaving town and I’m not sure when I’m coming back bag. It should be ready to go at all times and should have everything you need to run out the door naked and make it to safe spot and be somewhat comfortable for at least 72hrs.

GHB (GET HOME BAG) this is a smaller easily carried bag that rides in your car,or person (if you live in the city think expanded EDC) with supplies to make sure you make it home. To get to your house or a safe spot. These are things to piggy back your EDC or EVERY DAY CARRY.

EDC (EVERY DAY CARRY) these are things that you carry every day when you leave the house.

BUG in BAG or HOUSE KIT,these are the emergency kits,for staying at home through natural disasters and time of emergency.

If done right, your EDC will compliment your GHB,your GHB will compliment your BOB or home survival kit ... like a 3 tier system to help make it through the hard times and emergencies.


Tuesday, 1 October 2013

The Lemniscate

The symbol of an "eight on its side" is sometimes known as the lemniscate and is a glyph for infinity.

The English mathematician John Wallis (1616-1703) introduced the symbol to represent mathematical infinity in his Arithmetica Infinitorum of 1655. The term lemniscate refers to the shape itself, and the Swiss mathematician Jacob Bernoulli (1654-1705) first called the shape a lemniscus (Latin for ribbon) in an article in Acta Eruditorum in 1694.

In spiritual terms, the lemniscate represents eternity, the numinous and the higher spiritual powers. The Magus, the first card in the Major Arcana of the Tarot, is often depicted with the lemniscate above his head or incorporated into a wide-brimmed hat, signifying the divine forces he is attempting to control.

The use of a figure eight to represent infinity is an interesting choice, as eight is linked to pre-creational infinity through the Ogdoad and to the cyclical sense of infinity through the eight pagan festivals of the year and the octagram.


Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Tapping the side of the nose

Touching or tapping the side of the nose with the index finger means "we share a secret".

It is of British origin and then was popularized in America by the movie The Sting.


Monday, 23 September 2013


Of sheep; overturned.

A heavily pregnant, broad backed ewe may roll over and be unable to right herself. She is rigwelted.

There is also a beer called Rigwelter due to the similar effect it is said to have on humans.



Riggwelter Ale takes its name from a local Yorkshire Dales farming term which has Old Norse roots; “rygg” meaning back, and “velte” meaning to overturn. A sheep is said to be rigged or “rigwelted”, when it has rolled onto its back and is unable to get back up without assistance.

It seemed the perfect name for a strong beer from the Black Sheep Brewery in Yorkshire.


Saturday, 21 September 2013

Eminent v preeminent

Q: What's the difference between "eminent" and "preeminent" in usage? Would a distinguished faculty member be described as an "eminent professor" or a "preeminent professor"?

A: It's a matter of degree. Eminent means that someone or some thing has become distinguished and stands out from the crowd. There may several eminent people in a field. Preeminent means more like peerless, the most eminent of the eminent, the leading authority.

1.high in station, rank, or repute; prominent; distinguished: eminent statesmen.
2.conspicuous, signal, or noteworthy: eminent fairness.
3.lofty; high: eminent peaks.
4.prominent; projecting; protruding: an eminent nose.

eminent above or before others; superior; surpassing: He is preeminent in his profession.

From Yahoo! Answers at

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Enid Blyton

Enid Mary Blyton (11 August 1897 – 28 November 1968) was a British children's writer also known as Mary Pollock.

She is noted for numerous series of books based on recurring characters and designed for different age groups.

One of Blyton's most widely known characters is Noddy, intended for early years readers.

However, her main work is the genre of young readers' novels in which children have their own adventures with minimal adult help. Series of this type include

  • the Famous Five (21 novels, 1942–1963, based on four children and their dog),
  • the Five Find-Outers and Dog, (15 novels, 1943–1961, where five children regularly outwit the local police) as well as
  • The Secret Seven (15 novels, 1949–1963, a society of seven children who solve various mysteries).


Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Anscombe's quartet

Anscombe's quartet comprises four datasets that have nearly identical simple statistical properties, yet appear very different when graphed.

Each dataset consists of eleven (x,y) points. They were constructed in 1973 by the statistician

Francis Anscombe to demonstrate both the importance of graphing data before analyzing it and the effect of outliers on statistical properties.



It shows how simple statistical measures can fail to show an accurate picture without graphing.

Wikipedia describes this as "All four sets are identical when examined using simple summary statistics, but vary considerably when graphed" -


Sunday, 15 September 2013

Types of Shirt Stripes

Here are the commonly used names for the basic shirtings:

  • Hairline Stripe
  • Dress Stripe
  • Pin Stripes
  • Candy Stripe
  • Bengal Stripes
  • Awning Stripe
  • Shadow Stripe
  • Multi-Stripe

Candy Stripes approximately 1/8" equally spaced white & colour or colour & colour;

Bengal Stripes +/- 1/4" equally spaced white & colour or colour & colour, etc.

Pin stripes are usually 1 or two yarns thick and the spacing between pin stripes varies all over the map.

If you'd rather call your Candy Stripes Bengals and your Bengals Pinstripes, feel free. One person's tiger is another's kitty.

But if you're trying to communicate with a shirtmaker, use the chart at

Friday, 13 September 2013

Tea - Milk in First or Second?

We often get asked this question by customers and everyone has different views on the subject.

Scientists at The Royal Society of Chemistry (London) believe the correct way is to put the milk in first because the hot tea homogenizes the fats in the milk.

However, our theory is it is better to put the milk in second so you can tell exactly how much you will need.

See full article at

Wednesday, 11 September 2013


A amazing thing or person. {Informal}

More slang at

Monday, 9 September 2013

Fray Bentos, The Home of Corned Beef

When researching Uruguay many months ago I came across this town Fray Bentos and I could not believe that any town would name itself after a tin of corned beef!!! Fray Bentos brings back so many childhood memories for me, when at boarding school in England, tins of Fray Bentos Corned Beef sent to me by my Mother supplemented my school dinners or in many cases substituted my school dinners!!

Well here I am in Fray Bentos a small town in Uruguay on the Rio Uruguay and just across from Argentina. The town has a population of 22,000. In 1868 a German named Justua von Liebeg set up a company named THE LIEBEG’S EXTRACT OF MEAT COMPANY LTD. He along with another scientist had discovered a way of canning meat so that it would last. In the process they also found ways of using the extract so none of the animal was wasted, they say the only part that was not used was the Moooooo. He built his factory in a very small town called Fray Bentos because of the vast cattle ranches in both Uruguay and Argentina.

The products became so popular in Europe that soon the factory was exporting 90% of its production. In the UK it was marketed under two very famous brand names, Fray Bentos and OXO. During the 1st World War OXO became the drink of the trenches. 

See full article at

Saturday, 7 September 2013

The Cumaean Sibyl

The ferryman Charon carries the souls of the dead across the River Styx to the Underworld in his black boat.

Live mortals could not cross unless they showed him the golden bough, which was obtained from the Cumaean Sibyl. Herakles is the only living person who managed to cross without the bough.


Thursday, 5 September 2013

The Creeps

To give someone the creeps

  • Meaning - To give someone a feeling of uneasiness or mild fright. 
  • Example - Walking through the graveyard late at night gave me the creeps.
  • creep someone out
  • give someone the willies
  • spook someone
  • unnerve someone



  • Meaning - A disease of cattle and sheep attributed to a dietary deficiency; characterized by anaemia and softening of the bones and a slow stiff gait

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Types of salutes

The French salute is almost identical to the British Army's.

The customary salute in the Polish Armed Forces is the two-fingers salute, a variation of the British military salute with only two fingers extended.

In the Russian military, the right hand, palm down, is brought to the right temple, almost, but not quite, touching; the head has to be covered.

In the Swedish armed forces, the salute is identical to that of the U.S. armed forces and the British Royal Navy.

In the Hellenic Army salute the palm is facing down and the fingers point to the coat of arms.


Saturday, 31 August 2013

Bob's your uncle

Bob's your uncle (sometimes elaborately Robert's your mother's brother) is an expression commonly used mainly in Britain and Commonwealth nations.

Typically, someone says it to conclude a set of simple instructions to mean, "And there you have it", or "You're all set". For example, "To make a ham sandwich, just put a piece of ham between two slices of buttered bread, and Bob's your uncle". (Cf. voilà and presto.)

Copied from's_your_uncle

Thursday, 29 August 2013

Pollarding and coppicing

Late winter is the best time to coppice and pollard (cutting back trees and shrubs hard). It promotes colourful young stems, ornamental foliage and rejuvenates plants that tolerate hard pruning.

Coppicing is pruning close to the base of the plant, pollarding is pruning back to a trunk or stem.


Some say coppicing makes a tree look a bit like a hedgehog on a stick.

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Offset Time Zones

Offset Time Zones Are Not One of the Standard 24 Time Zones

While most of the world is familiar with time zones that differ in increments of an hour, there are many places in the world that use offset time zones. These time zones are offset by a half-hour or even fifteen minutes off of the standard twenty four time zones of the world.

India, the world's second most populous country utilizes an offset time zone. India is a half-hour ahead of Pakistan to the west and a half-hour behind Bangladesh to the east.

Venezuela's offset time zone was established by President Hugo Chavez in late 2007. Venezuela's offset time zone makes it a half hour earlier than Guyana to the east and a half hour later than Colombia to the west.

One of the most unusual time zone offsets is Nepal, which is fifteen minutes behind neighbouring Bangladesh, which is on a standard time zone.

See full article at

Sunday, 25 August 2013

On the ball


To be alert; in command of one's senses.


Some authorities have suggested that 'on the ball' originated in the sporting arena, and alludes to runners being on the balls of their feet, eagerly ready to run a race. This has some similarities with being 'up to scratch', which derives from boxers or runners being ready at the starting line. It is a plausible derivation, but has nothing to recommend it beyond that.

A more commonly advocated location for the source of 'on the ball' is the Royal Observatory at Greenwich. This is where the oldest surviving and best known time-ball is sited. The Greenwich time-ball was installed in 1833 to signal the accurate time to passing ships. It was, and still is, raised just before 1pm each day and falls as 1pm strikes on the observatory's clock. Captains needed to have their ships' chronometers set accurately in order to navigate correctly, hence they needed to be 'on the ball'. It's a nice story and there are any number of tour guides around the observatory who are all too happy to repeat it. Unfortunately...

Need I go on? It isn't true.

The phrase 'on the ball' did actually originate in the sporting arena, but relates to the eyes rather than the feet. It is a contraction of the earlier expression 'keep your eye on the ball', which advice has been given to participants in virtually every known ball game. For the source, we need to look to early ball games. The phrase is recorded in early records of cricket, golf, croquet and baseball and many people regard baseball as the origin. Well, that appears to be almost true - the earliest citation that I can find in print comes from the English game of rounders

See full article at

Friday, 23 August 2013

Blivet, poiuyt and devil’s fork

A blivet, also known as a poiuyt or even more often refereed to as “The Devil’s Fork” is an undecipherable figure, an optical illusion and an impossible object.

In most cases, (yet not always necessarily) it appears to have three cylindrical prongs at one end which mysteriously transform into two rectangular prongs at the other end. In our illusion world, it’s most often showcased in a form of a Roman Columns.

See many example in Blivet (Devil’s Fork) Illusion Collection at

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

15 Most Impenetrable Bank Vaults

1. Fort Knox – The United States Bullion Depository
If a bank robber was somehow able to get through the solid granite wall perimeter and past the squadrons of machinegun wielding guards and armed military, the thief would still have to contend with a 22-ton vault door. That 22 ton blast door is held shut by a lock so intricate that it requires a 10 person team to unlock. Is it really any wonder that Fort Knox has never even had a published robbery attempt?
2. The New York Federal Reserve Vault – World’s Biggest Gold Depository

3. The Bank of England Gold Vault
The vault walls are bombproof and so sturdy that bank staff used them for protection during WWII air raids. And when the vault doors do need to be opened, they can only be accessed by an elaborate system consisting of voice recognition, 3 foot keys and other unpublished security measures.

4. The London Silver Vaults
5. Teikoku Bank, Hiroshima – Atomic Bomb-Proof!

See full list at

Monday, 19 August 2013

Crack on

Meaning: Continue doing something with energy

Example: We had to CRACK ON to get everything finished on time.


Saturday, 17 August 2013

The Longest Tunnel in the World

Is the Lærdal Tunnel (Lærdalstunnelen), spanning the mountain between the tiny villages of Lærdal and Aurland but fundamentally linking Bergen and Oslo. At 24.5 km (15.23 miles) long, the Lærdal Tunnel is the longest road tunnel in the world, meaning it’s the longest tunnel that you can drive through.

At 57 km (35.4 miles), the Gotthard Base Tunnel in Switzerland now holds the title for longest tunnel in the world (used only by trains), and last September, I rode through the Seikan Tunnel in Japan, which is the longest undersea tunnel in the world.

See full article at

Thursday, 15 August 2013

Tolkien’s Wizards / Istari

In the fiction of J. R. R. Tolkien, the Wizards of Middle-earth are a small group of beings outwardly resembling Men but possessing much greater physical and mental power.

They are also called the Istari ("Wise Ones") by the elves.

The Wizards – their colour - notes

  • Saruman - White (later Many Coloured) - Leader of the order, until Gandalf cast him out.
  • Gandalf, Mithrandir, Icanus, Tharkun, The Grey Pilgrim, Stormcrow - Grey (later White) - the second most powerful in the order, until he cast out Saruman. He became Gandalf the White when he slew the Balrog.
  • Radagast - Brown -  third most powerful in the order. Saruman deceived him into getting Gandalf captured in Isengard. He was a loved of animals, especially birds.
  • Morinehtar - Blue - nothing is recorded of these people.
  • Rómestámo - Blue - nothing is recorded of these people.

Gandalf and Saruman both play important roles in The Lord of the Rings, while Radagast appears only briefly. Alatar and Pallando do not feature in the story, as they journeyed far into the east after their arrival in Middle-earth.

Extracted from , and

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

The Siege Perilous

The Siege Perilous (also known as The Perilous Seat) is a vacant seat at the Round Table reserved by Merlin for the knight who would one day be successful in the quest for the Holy Grail.

The Siege Perilous is so strictly reserved that it is fatal to anyone else who sits in it.

Extracted from

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Articles of clothing named after people and places.

Jersey: A knitted garment of wool or cotton

Cardigan: A type of sweater

Balaclava: A type of woollen headgear

Balmoral: A type of hat

Mackintosh: A type of waterproof raincoat.

Ulster: A heavy herringbone or tweed overcoat

See full article at

Friday, 9 August 2013

TAPS, one of history's most difficult engineering feats.

The $8-billion Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS), one of history's most difficult engineering feats, was the largest private construction project of its time.

Built in 1975-77, the 800-mile, 4-foot-diameter, zigzagging pipeline carries crude oil from 250 miles north of the Arctic Circle down to the terminal at Valdez, the nearest ice-free port.

About half of the pipeline is above ground as it crosses three mountain ranges, 34 major waterways, and some 800 small streams. Inside Pump Station No. 9, three pumps put through about 1.2 million barrels of North Slope oil a day. Traveling at 5.4 mph, the oil takes 6.2 days to traverse the pipeline.


Wednesday, 7 August 2013

A cruise ain't all plain sailing

(This lot was printed in the Echo on 1 April, but on the next day it was claimed to be genuine.)

COMPLAINTS by cruise ship passengers include one by a woman who moaned about the sea being "too loud", it has been revealed.

And a couple accused a captain of being "rude" for sailing off when they had left a note saying they needed more sightseeing time in port, according to cruise travel agency ####. co. uk.

One woman, having seen that Take That star Gary Barlow had been on her ship on an earlier trip, demanded an explanation as to why the singer was not on her voyage.

Then there was the man who complained about not getting "an impressive tan" and being unable to swim in the pool each day while on a trip around ... Alaska.

A woman travelling with Celebrity Cruises asked for a refund as there were "no celebrities on board", while a Yorkshire couple wanted compensation after forking out "a lot more money than planned" on staff tips due to the excellent service.

The woman who complained about the loudness of the sea said she had not been able to sleep well on her Mediterranean cruise. She demanded cabins be "better soundproofed against the sounds of the sea".

Another female traveller, having booked an inside cabin, then complained about not having a view of the sea and asked for a window to be installed.

####. co. uk cruise development manager Steph Curtin said: "From time to time we come across a few quirky complaints that we can do little to help. "I'm afraid we can't be held responsible for the sea being too loud or the lack of celebrities on board."

From uk.rec.humour

Monday, 5 August 2013

Trust, but verify

Trust, but verify is a form of advice given which recommends that while a source of information might be considered reliable, one should perform additional research to verify that such information is accurate, or trustworthy.

The term was a signature phrase adopted and made famous by U.S. president Ronald Reagan. Reagan frequently used it when discussing U.S. relations with the Soviet Union. The phrase was learned by Reagan from Suzanne Massie, a writer on Russia. She told Reagan, "The Russians like to talk in proverbs. It would be nice of you to know a few. You are an actor, you can learn them very quickly".

After Reagan used the phrase at the signing of the INF Treaty, his counterpart Mikhail Gorbachev responded: "You repeat that at every meeting," to which Reagan answered "I like it”.


Saturday, 3 August 2013

Frederick Forsyth on Martin-Baker

Below his nose was a small white feather on the water, the V—wake of a tiny fisherman. He dived towards it, converting height to speed raced across the staring faces at a thousand feet then hauled back, converting speed to height, pulled the ejector—seat handle and blew out straight through the canopy.

Messrs Martin-Baker knew their stuff. The seat took him up and away from the dying bomber. A pressure-operated trigger tumbled him out of the steel seat which fell harmlessly to the water, and left him dangling ¡n the warm sunshine under his parachute. Minutes later he was being hauled, coughing and spluttering, onto the aft deck of a Bertram Moppie.

Frederick Forsyth, The Cobra

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Types of barns

* Stable
* Barn conversion
* Bank barn
* Barn raising
* Barnyard
* Carriage house/Cart Shed
* Combination Barn
* Dairies
* Dovecote
* Dutch barn
* Farmhouse (building)
* Functionally classified barn
* Granary
* Linhay
* Longhouse
* Oast houses
* Pole barn
* Round barn
* barn (unit)
* Shelter sheds
* Shippon
* Stable
* Tobacco barn
* Tithe barn
* Threshing barn

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Ship of the line

A ship-of-the-line was a type of naval warship constructed from the 17th through the mid-19th century to take part in the naval tactic known as the line of battle, in which two columns of opposing warships would manoeuvre to bring the greatest weight of broadside guns to bear. Since these engagements were almost invariably won by the heaviest ships carrying the most powerful guns, the natural progression was to build sailing vessels that were the largest and most powerful of their time.


Monday, 29 July 2013

Inbox Bankruptcy

Declare Inbox Bankruptcy When Necessary, Save Yourself a Lot of Stress

Whether you're declaring email bankruptcy or laundry bankruptcy, sometimes the only way to climb out from under the pile of real or virtual clutter is to start from scratch.

Our advice: Don't be afraid to declare bankruptcy as often as you need.

See full article at

Saturday, 27 July 2013

Sommers, on protecting yourself from electricity

Rule one: Avoid the juice.

Rule two: If you can't avoid it, protect yourself against it.

Wear PPE, personal protective equipment …

Rule three: If you can't avoid juice and can't protect yourself against it, cut its head off.

All circuits, big or small, have a way to shut them down…


From - The Burning Wire, by Jeffery Deaver

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Hagberg Falling Number

A measure of the quality of wheat and its suitability for certain processes.

In practice it is a measure of the viscosity of a broth made from the grain.

A sample of the grain is ground, mixed with water and heated. It is put into a narrow tube and the time taken in seconds for a weighted plunger to fall a fixed distance is noted.


Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Stevenson Screen

The Stevenson Screen or thermometer screen is a standard shelter (from rain, snow and high winds, but also leaves and animals) for meteorological instruments, particularly wet and dry bulb thermometers used to record humidity and air temperature.

It is kept 1.25m/4.1ft (UK standard) above the ground by legs to avoid strong temperature gradients at ground level, has louvred sides to encourage the free passage of air, and is painted white to reflect heat radiation, since what is measured is the temperature of the air in the shade, not of the sunshine.

To allow comparability from screen to screen every aspect of construction and exposure is specified by the World Meteorological Organization. For example, its doors opens towards the pole to minimize disturbance when reading in daylight. Double roof, walls and floor of white-painted wood provide screening, and extensive louvres maintain adequate ventilation on all but the stillest days.

It was invented by the British engineer and meteorologist Sir Thomas Stevenson (1818-1887), the father of Robert Louis Stevenson.


Monday, 22 July 2013

Types of clay bricks

Engineering bricks have high compressive strength and low water absorption properties. They are rated as either class A or B, with A being the strongest and they are ideal for use below ground level and for Damp proof courses.

Common bricks have low compressive strength and are of lower quality than engineering or facing bricks as no attempt is made to control their colour or appearance. They should not be used below ground and are generally used for internal brickwork only. The term "frogged common" is sometimes used as a generic term for "flettons" or LBC faced commons. These are bricks that have a common coloured base and then have different face colours added.

Facing bricks give a building its aesthetic appearance and are designed to be used externally against internal block work or brickwork to provide an attractive 'face'. They are by far the most popular type of brick and come in a huge variety of colours and sizes.

See full article at

Sunday, 21 July 2013

All over the shop

If something is completely disorganised or confused, it is all over the shop.


Friday, 19 July 2013

Harry Illingsworth

Harry Worth (born Harry Illingsworth, 20 November 1917 in Tankersley, South Yorkshire, died 20 July 1989 Hertfordshire) was an English comedy actor and comedian.

His standard performance was as a genial, bumbling middle-class and middle-aged man from the North of England, who reduced all who came into contact with him to a state of confusion and frustration.


Harry Worth - The Man In The Window



Set in the fictional town of Woodbridge, 'Here's Harry' presented the star as a bumbling complainer continually pitted against officialdom in a world that he always seemed to be one step behind.


Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Who Put the Hole in the Doughnut?

In a house in Rockport, Maine there is a plaque that recognizes Mason Crockett Gregory with the invention of the doughnut hole, in 1847. The reason why? He hated doughnuts with an uncooked center.

Even if Captain Gregory came up with the idea, John Blondell was awarded the patent for the first doughnut cutter in 1872. Blondell's version was made of wood, but an 'improved' tin version with a fluted edge was patented in 1889

Extracted from A Short History Of Doughnuts at

Monday, 15 July 2013

Publish and be damned

“Publish and be damned!” was the Duke of Wellington’s famous retort to a former mistress’s blackmail attempt by publishing his love letters and declaring their affair to the world.

A lesser man than the iron duke would have no doubt quietly acquiesced and paid the money.


Saturday, 13 July 2013

Nonexistent Objects

A nonexistent object is something that does not exist. Some examples often cited are: Zeus, Pegasus, Sherlock Holmes, Vulcan, the perpetual motion machine, the golden mountain, the fountain of youth, the round square, etc. Some important philosophers have thought that the very concept of a nonexistent object is contradictory (Hume) or logically ill-formed (Kant, Frege), while others (Leibniz, Meinong, the Russell of Principles of Mathematics) have embraced it wholeheartedly.

One of the reasons why there are doubts about the concept of a nonexistent object is this: to be able to truly claim of an object that it doesn't exist, it seems that one has to presuppose that it exists, for doesn't a thing have to exist if we are to make a true claim about it? In the face of this puzzling situation, one has to be very careful when accepting or formulating the idea that there are nonexistent objects. It turns out that Kant's view that “exists” is not a “real” predicate and Frege's view, that “exists” is not a predicate of individuals (i.e., a predicate that yields a well-formed sentence if one puts a singular term in front of it), has to be abandoned if one is to accept the claim that there are nonexistent objects.

See full article at

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Types of hand-sewing needles

Sharps are the needles most commonly used for hand sewing. They do have a sharp point, as the name implies, and are of medium length (compared, that is, to the short quilting needle or the long milliner's needle, below). Sharps have a rounded eye, which is usually just large enough to accommodate thread. Like the other hand-sewing needles, sharps are available in sizes 1 through 10, which is determined by the diameter of the needle. Size 1 is the longest and thickest, and size 10 is smallest and thinnest.
When choosing a needle size, it's best to consider the type of fabric you'll be using. In general, the lighter your fabric, the thinner the needle you'll want to use with it. Many craft stores stock packs of assorted sizes. If you're unsure of the best needle, just try passing a few different-sized needles through an inconspicuous place on the fabric. Which one passes through most easily? Which one leaves the smallest hole in the fabric?

Ball-point needles have a rounded tip, so they're perfect for sewing on knit fabrics. A sharp needle can easily damage knit fabric by poking though a thread and then pulling out the knit stitches. A ball point, on the other hand, will pass right through the knit. Ball points also come in sizes 5 through 10.

Embroidery needles (sometimes known as crewel needles) are very similar to sharps. The main difference is in the eye—embroidery needles have a larger eye, so that thicker flosses and yarns can pass through. Embroidery needles also come in sizes 1 through 10.

Quilting needles, which are also known as betweens, are much shorter than sharps and also have a small, rounded eye for thread. This type of needle is a bit thinner than a sharp as well. Quilting needles are great for small, detailed stitching, such as quilting, of course. Their thinness and small eye help them pass easily through heavyweight fabrics, like denim or tweed. This type of needle is available in sizes 1 through 10.

Milliner's needles are the longest of the hand-sewing needles. They are traditionally used for hat making but are also great for basting, as you can manoeuvre them quickly through fabric. They're also available in sizes 1 through 10.
Now, there are also "specialty needles," which are used for other purposes. Here are two that are commonly used by crafters:

Tapestry needles have a blunt point and a big eye. They're made this way so they can pass through needlepoint and tapestry canvases without damaging them. And that large eye will accommodate the thicker yarns used for these kinds of crafts.

Chenille needles also have a large eye like tapestry needles, but they have a sharp point. This makes them ideal for crafts like ribbon embroidery, where you need to pull a thick strand through a closely woven fabric.


Tuesday, 9 July 2013

A Ship's Heads

HEADS – the lavatory. Always pronounced in the plural.

In the days of sail, the wind would ideally come from astern or the quarters (45 degrees from astern). Therefore it was prudent to go to the head of the ship (bow) to do your business (remembering the saying "don’t piss into the wind").

You had a choice of which side of the bow to use and this is why it’s referred to in the plural. (only the USN uses the singular ‘head’)


Sunday, 7 July 2013

More Questions

If athletes get athlete's foot, what do astronauts get? Missile toe?

If corn oil is made from corn and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, then what is baby oil made from?

If Wile E. Coyote had enough money to buy all that ACME stuff, why didn't he just buy dinner?

If you ate both pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry?

If you take a laptop computer for a run you could jog your memory.

from uk.rec.humour

Friday, 5 July 2013

How to Tie a Scarf

General Rules
  1. Keep it simple – only tie knots you are comfortable wearing–confidence is everything.
  2. Scarf length & thickness can limit knot style options.
  3. A scarf isn’t a necktie–keep it loose.
  4. Function first–fashion second.  Unless you’re a rock star or The Style Blogger.
Ways to Tie a Scarf
  1. The Drape, or The Simplest Way To Wear A Scarf
  2. Overhand Knot (or Ascot)
  3. The Fake Knot
  4. The Once Round
  5. The Twice Round
  6. The “Parisian” or French or European Knot
See full article at

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

To be knocked into a cocked hat

This means to be routed completely in a physical or verbal contest.

The expression comes from the practice of military officers to carry their soft hats under the arm, thus flattening it out. The hats became triangular shaped when flattened. So, when someone was crushed in a contest, they were flattened as completely as an officer's cocked hat.


Monday, 1 July 2013

The World’s Largest Atlas

Earth Platinum, published at the end of February 2012, in an edition limited to 31 copies, is the world’s largest atlas.

The book is 1.8 m (6 ft) high and 1.4 m (4.5 ft) wide.

When opened, it spans 2.8 m (9 ft).

It contains 128 pages of maps, flags and panoramic photographs, and weighs 150 kg (over 300 lb).

It’s the kind of book you can’t read alone: it takes two persons to turn over the gigantic pages.

See full article at

Saturday, 29 June 2013

Bugs Bunny quotes

Eh, what's up, doc? You can't shoot a wabbit.
I'm just a little wabbit!
Say; them's fightin' woids


Thursday, 27 June 2013

Types of rooftop structures

Belfry – A rooftop structure, or portion of a tower or turret, in which bells are hung.

Belvedere – A rooftop structure, or top level of a tower, accessible by stairs or ladder and from which one can look out. A belvedere has a roof and is open on one or more sides. The term means “beautiful view.”

Cupola – Cupola means “small cup” and is an architectural feature that resembles a small cup turned upside down. A cupola frequently crowns a roof, dome, or turret. In common usage, cupola is used today to refer to round, square, open, closed, occupied, and unoccupied structures.

Dome – A circular or spherical rooftop structure, though a spherical ceiling is also known as a dome. As an architectural feature, domes come in all sizes and shapes: onion domes, bell domes, saucer domes, etc. Sometimes, “dome” can refer to a cathedral: the Florence Cathedral in Italy is known as the Duomo.

Dormer – A structure projecting from a roof, usually containing a window.

Gazebo – While we often think of a gazebo as being a garden structure, a gazebo is also an ornamental rooftop structure open on all sides.

Lantern – A small structure, either open or with windows, crowning a roof. While it can be decorative, the primary function is to assist with ventilation or provide natural lighting.

Parapet – A low wall along the edge of a roof. Parapets were built originally to protect soldiers, but today are mostly decorative.Spire – A decorative element atop a roof, tower or steeple. It is typically narrow, tapered, and/or pointed.

Steeple – A tall structure frequently topped by a spire. In general usage, any tower attached to a church is referred to as a steeple.

Tower – A structure of great height when compared with its horizontal dimensions. It may be attached to a building or stand alone, and is typically taller than the structures around it. A tower may have a roof or be open on the top level.

Turret – A tower-like structure attached to a larger building and beginning above the ground level. Turrets are often ornamental and cylindrical in shape and typically have roofs.

Widow’s Walk – Also known as a captain’s walk, a widow’s walk is a flat roof deck or elevated platform, enclosed by a railing, from which one can look out. Widow’s walks are often found on truncated roofs (think of a sloped roof that stops abruptly and becomes flat). In legend, the wives of seafaring men would await their return while standing on the roof; alas, sometimes the men didn’t return, leaving widows standing alone.


Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Shotgun shack

A house with no internal barrier between the front and back doors.

"Familiar in working-class neighborhoods all over the South, the “shotgun” name reflects the fact a bullet fired at the front door could pass right out the back door, travelling the full length of the narrow house without ever encountering any obstructions." Duncan Spencer in The Hill, November 8, 2004


Sunday, 23 June 2013

Compare to / Compare with

Compare to
     To talk about the similarities or the differences between two things
     Example: China has a huge population compared to Australia.

Compare with
     To talk about both the similarities and the differences between two things
     Example: She compared the various hotels in the brochure with each other before making her choice


Friday, 21 June 2013

Items that should be a professional’s wardrobe

  • 6+ Suits
  • 3+ Pair Dress Shoes
  • 2 Pair Casual Leather Shoes
  • Belts that match above shoes
  • 15+ Dress Shirts
  • 15+ Ties
  • 1 Pair jeans that fit – no holes
  • 4 Pair Slacks, Dark & Light
  • 4+ Button-up collared sport shirts
  • 2+ Solid Polo Shirts
  • 5+ Sweaters
  • 10+ Undershirts V-neck
  • 2+ Sports Jackets
  • 1 Navy Blazer
  • 10+ Pocket Squares
  • 2 Simple Dress Watches
  • 1 Overcoat
  • 1 Pair Leather Gloves
  • 1 Trenchcoat
  • 1 Hat
  • Presentable Athletic Clothing
  • Collar Stays, Cuff Links

See full article at

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Murphy's Lesser Known Laws

Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

He who laughs last, thinks slowest.

Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.

Those who live by the sword get shot by those who don't.

Nothing is foolproof to a sufficiently talented fool.

The 50-50-90 rule: Anytime you have a 50-50 chance of getting something right, there's a 90% probability you'll get it wrong.

If you lined up all the cars in the world end to end, someone would be stupid enough to try to pass them, five or six at a time, on a hill, in the fog.

The things that come to those who wait will be the things left by those who got there first.

Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will sit in a boat all day drinking beer.

Flashlight: A case for holding dead batteries.

The shin bone is a device for finding furniture in a dark room.

A fine is a tax for doing wrong. A tax is a fine for doing well.

When you go into court, you are putting yourself in the hands of 12 people who weren't smart enough to get out of jury duty.


Monday, 17 June 2013

Types of Graphs

Line Graphs

Comparing various sets of data can be complicated, but line graphs make it easy. The plotted peaks and dips on the grid allow you to monitor and compare improvement and decline. Scientists use line graphs all the time, as do all types of professionals and students.

Bar Graphs

Pleasing to the eyes, bar graphs compare data in a simple format consisting of rectangular bars. With a few varieties to choose from, settling on the right bar graph might be confusing. Should you go with a horizontal, vertical, double or group bar graph? Read on to find out.


You first encounter pictographs during childhood and bump into them all through life at school, work, and all over magazines and on TV. These diagrams, which use small picture symbols to compare information, are a media favourite; statisticians, though, do not share the sentiment. Find out why, and learn more about the uses of pictographs.

Pie Charts

Simple to make and simple to understand, a pie chart is a popular form of data comparison, consisting of a circle that is split into parts. When should you use pie charts, and when should you not? Learn about their advantages and disadvantages, and get some tips on making pie charts.


A cosmograph is a type of chart that shows comparisons. In doing so, it makes life and work easier. If you want to prepare an input-output model for your organization, or compare the features of a geographical region through a simple visual, cosmographs come in handy. Find out how a cosmograph can help you.

Organizational Charts

These diagrams represent the relationships between the different positions and ranks of a company through a series of boxes that go from top to bottom and side to side. Not only does an organizational chart add order and structure to an organization, but it also shows if changes are needed. Get more information on organizational charts.

Flow Charts

When projects seem overbearing and processes seem complex, flow charts can save the day by break things down into smaller steps and giving you a clearer idea of the overall process. Shapes are typically used to represent the components of a flow chart. Find out what these shapes represent and learn more about flow charts.


Saturday, 15 June 2013

Orcs in battle

Orkses is never defeated in battle.

If we win we win

If we die we die fighting, so it don't count.

If we runs for it we don't die neither, cos we can come back for annuver go,



Saturday, 8 June 2013

ZEN Teachings

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me for the path is narrow.. In fact, just piss off and leave me alone.

2. Sex is like air. It's not that important unless you aren't getting any.

3. No one is listening until you fart.

4. Always remember you're unique. Just like everyone else.

5. Never test the depth of the water with both feet..

6. If you think nobody cares whether you're alive or dead, try missing a couple of mortgage payments.

7. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

8. If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

9. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

10. If you lend someone 20 and never see that person again, it was probably well worth it.

11. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

12. Some days you are the dog, some days you are the tree.

13. Don't worry; it only seems kinky the first time.

14. Good judgment comes from bad experience ... and most of that comes from bad judgment.

15. A closed mouth gathers no foot.

16. There are two excellent theories for arguing with women. Neither one works.

17. Generally speaking, you aren't learning much when your lips are moving.

18. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

19. We are born naked, wet and hungry, and get slapped on our arse .... then things just keep getting worse.

20. Never, under any circumstances, take a sleeping pill and a laxative on the same night

from uk.rec.humour

Friday, 7 June 2013

The King's English

The King's English is a book on English usage and grammar.

It was written by the Fowler brothers, Henry Watson Fowler and Francis George Fowler, and published in 1906, and thus pre-dates by 20 years Modern English Usage, which was written by Henry alone after Francis's death in 1918.


Wednesday, 5 June 2013

SawStop makes for safer woodworking

A US Patent Attorney has invented a device that prevents fingers being sliced off by table saws and other woodworking machinery.

Steve Gass, a keen woodworker with a Ph.D in physics, hit upon the idea to improve table saw safety in his own workshop.

The SawStop system works by recognising the difference in the electrical properties of wood and a user.

The system induces a high-frequency electrical signal on the blade of a table saw and monitors this signal for changes caused by contact between the blade and a user's body.

The signal remains unchanged when the blade cuts wood because of the relatively small inherent electrical capacitance and conductivity of wood.

However, when a user contacts the blade while the saw is operating, the electrical signal changes because of the relatively large inherent capacitance of the user's body.

The SawStop system detects this change in the electrical signal and immediately forces a brake into the teeth of the blade. The brake absorbs the energy of the blade, bringing the blade to a complete stop in approximately 2-5 milliseconds.

See full story at

Monday, 3 June 2013

Blow the gaffe/gaff

If you blow the gaffe or blow the gaff, you tell someone something that other people wanted you to keep secret.


Saturday, 1 June 2013

Historical present

When telling stories about past events, people often switch into present tense, as in I was walking home from work one day. All of a sudden this man comes up to me and says....  This phenomenon, called the historical present, has a long history in English and is found in numerous other languages, both ancient and modern. Linguists have sometimes suggested that historical present makes stories more vivid primarily by bringing past actions into the immediate present. However, it has been noted that, no matter how exciting stories are, the speakers never use present tense verbs exclusively even when relating the most crucial events. In addition, past and present tense alternations tend to occur only between events that are markedly different. In other words, tense alternation usually does not occur when two verbs are viewed as belonging to one larger event. For example, two verbs joined by and that share the same subject tend to share the same tense as well, especially when the subject appears only once, just before the first verb, as in Those two people came in and sat down.  It seems, then, that the historical present serves more to separate events within stories than to bring stories to life. One interesting exception to this is the verb say: its tense alternations do not seem regular; in addition, its third person present form says is also used in nonstandard narration with I, as in So I says to the guy, I says....


Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Avoir l'oeuf colonial

Literally 'to have the colonial egg', meaning to have a beer belly, a caricature of the old colonials

Monday, 27 May 2013

Nuts, drupes and legumes


A walnut is a seed from a tree in the genus Juglans. Technically, a walnut is a drupe, not a nut, since it takes the form of a fruit enclosed by a fleshy outer layer which parts to reveal a thin shell with a seed inside. As walnuts age on the tree, the outer shell dries and pulls away, leaving the shell and seed behind.



After pollination, the fruit develops into a legume 3 to 7 cm (1 to 2 inches) long containing 2 to 3 (rarely 1 or 4) seeds, which forces its way underground to mature. Although a nut in the culinary sense, in the botanical sense the fruit of the peanut is a woody, indehiscent legume or pod and not technically a nut.

From Pocket Wikipedia,

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Choosing a meal at a restaurant

When I sit down in a restaurant I skim over the menu and immediately select two items that look good.

From that point on I only debate the one against the other and usually decide what I want within moments.

I'm almost always the first to be ready to order and I'm never one to say after a meal "I wish I would have ordered..." because I picked from two things I really wanted.


Friday, 24 May 2013

Erasmus of Rotterdam

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus (sometimes known as Desiderius Erasmus of Rotterdam) (October 27, 1466/1469, Rotterdam – July 12, 1536, Basel) was a Dutch Renaissance humanist and a Catholic Christian theologian.

His scholarly name Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus comprises the following three elements:

  • the Latin noun desiderium ("longing" or "desire") the name being a genuine Late Latin name);
  • the Greek adjective ἐράσμιος (erásmios) meaning "desired", and, in the form Erasmus, also the name of a saint;
  • and the Latinized adjectival form for the city of Rotterdam (Roterodamus = "of Rotterdam").


Thursday, 23 May 2013

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Sea Level Isn't Level

Altitude on maps is given using sea level as a baseline.

But sea level is not a constant, NASA/JPL oceanographer Josh Willis explains: “Even though it’s sometimes convenient to think of the ocean as a great big bathtub, where turning on the tap at one end raises the water level in the whole tub, real sea level rise doesn’t quite happen that way. To understand why, you first have to realize that ‘sea level’ isn’t really level at all.”

The JPL/Cal Tech Sea Level Viewer gives some examples of things that can affect the local sea level: El Niño, tsunamis, and hurricanes.

In a global warming context, the sea level has risen an average of nearly two inches since 1993, but it’s a lot higher in some spots than others.

Via What on Earth

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Hart's Rules

Hart's Rules for Compositors and Readers at the University Press, Oxford was an authoritative reference book and style guide published in England by Oxford University Press (OUP). Hart's Rules originated as a compilation of rules and standards by Horace Hart over almost three decades during his employment at other printing establishments, but they were first printed as a single broadsheet page for in-house use by the OUP in 1893 while Hart was Controller of the University Press. They were originally intended as a concise style-guide for the staff of the OUP, but they developed continuously over the years, were published in 1904, and soon gained wider use as a source for authoritative instructions on typesetting style, grammar, punctuation and usage.


Friday, 17 May 2013

Mary Celeste & Maria Celeste

The Mary Celeste was a British-American merchant brigantine famous for having been discovered on 4 December 1872 in the Atlantic Ocean, unmanned and apparently abandoned (one lifeboat was missing, along with its crew of seven), although the weather was fine and her crew had been experienced and capable seamen.
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Sister Maria Celeste (16 August 1600 – 2 April 1634), born Virginia Gamba, was the daughter of famous Italian scientist Galileo Galilei and Marina Gamba
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Galileo's Daughter is a book by Dava Sobel. It is based on the surviving letters of Galileo Galilei's daughter, the nun Suor Maria Celeste, and explores the relationship between Galileo and his daughter.
See more at's_Daughter