Saturday, January 31, 2015

English: Our Primary Language, A Language We Don't Know

          Anybody else out there use Dictionary.com on a regular basis for homework in all subjects, writing papers, and occasionally even for a text? Well I know I do and one thing I notice every time I go on Dictionary.com (which I have the phone app for because I am a frequent visitor) is the interesting word of the day that comes up right at the top of the page. In addition to the word of the day, there is usually a lesson on the right side teaching about some common English mistake made in writing such as there vs. their or who vs. whom or even that vs. which. Both the word of the day and the lesson catch my attention every time I visit the site. This morning it had me thinking about all the things in and about the English language that I don't know about, that any common American doesn't know about. What most people know about and use of the English language is not even the tip of the iceberg. To make a long story short, I searched some interesting facts about the English language and found one website that had me in awe.
          Perhaps the information is useless, which it just may be, but it at the very least provides insight into how much of the English language is interesting and unknown to the common American. Below are just a few words that are more interesting than they appear, and if you don't even know what the word itself means, then that just goes to show how much more we don't know about our primary language.

1. BILLOWY: the longest non-scientific word to be spelled in alphabetical order
2. EIGHTY-EIGHT: the highest number that is spelled without an n
3. CHECKBOOK: the longest word that has a line of symmetry horizontally (written in all capitals)



To learn more interesting words in the English language, visit Mental Floss Words.
To learn a new word every day and/or to learn about common English writing errors, visit Dictionary.com.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Super Bowl

As many people know the Super Bowl is this Sunday.  The New England patriots will verse the Seattle Seahawks in Arizona.  The game is not the only thing that costs money to put on. A lot of marketing goes on the make the Super Bowl the best experience .  Many commercials air throughout the Super Bowl that cost a lot of money and many viewers watch.  Millions of dollars go into these commercials.  In my opinion I enjoy watching the commercials more than the game, and I'm sure many people agree.  Also another big thing is the half time show.  This year Katy perry is performing and that also uses a lot of marketing.  They have to find a popular singer that people will enjoy watching.  A lot of strategic thinking goes to make the Super Bowl flow and good as it has the past 49 years. Go Patriots!


Why Is Snow White?


          Of all people right now, New Englanders are probably the most apt to be wondering why snow is white. Then again, New Englanders would probably vomit if they heard the word snow again before next winter. Either way, I was curious as I spent the entire day today shoveling out driveways, cars, and decks. I've always wondered about what made snow white but never actually arrived at a valid answer. When I asked my friend today, her reply was, "It's ice." Well now that's just great to make it nice and simple and all...but ice is clear. Needless to say, after a long day of shoveling I decided to look it up.
          It turns out that snow is white because it is a reflection of all colors. Objects reflect and absorb wavelengths of colors which is what allows us to see different colors. For example, a banana absorbs all wavelengths except yellow which it reflects and is therefore what we see. White is the result of no absorption. All wavelengths are reflected off snow, which makes it white to the human eye. Snow is made up of ice crystals mixed with air molecules. The spaces between the crystals, in part due to their unique shapes, bounce the wavelengths around so much that they are all reflected back. 
          Now, if you're anything like me, you're wondering why ice is clear then? Well, ice doesn't have the space between the frozen water molecules like snow has between it's crystals, so it allows light to pass through with little reflection. Thick ice sometimes absorbs everything but blue, therefore the blue is reflected and the ice has a blue hue to it.


To learn more about the science behind the colors of ice and snow, visit Seattle News.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Bracing for the blizzard

A big snow storm is heading our way and we need to be prepared.  Many people are going crazy about the storm and you can tell by the grocery stores.  Lines throughout all the local grocery stores are outrageous due to people preparing for the upcoming snowstorm.  It had been said that this storm could be deadly so people should stay away from traveling.  Most likely schools and many businesses will be closed this week so be prepared.  Many pregnant mothers who are due soon are worried about going into labor because of the storm ahead.  They are questioning whether or not they will be able to get to the hospital.  This storm could be breaking history due to how large it may be.   Travel could be impossible and life threatening so stay home and stay warm.  It is not worth the risk.  Get ready because the blizzard is coming!
http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/25/us/weather-storm/index.html

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Words We Have No Meaning For


        Recently when practicing vocab for the SAT's, it made me think about words and just truly what they mean to us. There are roughly 6,500 languages spoken in the world. But some of those languages have words that do not have a word in English. I looked up a few examples on some words spoken in other languages that had no  meaning in English. 
Lagom is a Swedish word, that means something that is not too much, not too little, but just right.

              Tartle is a Scots word, and it is the word for that nervous hesitation right before you have to introduce someone who's name you cannot remember.

       Shemomedjamo is a Georgian word, that defines the feeling when you are very full from  but you can't help but continue eating.

      There are so many other words that can be found, but I found those ones to be some of the more interesting ones, because I've recently had these thoughts or feelings myself, and I'm sure otheres can relate to that as well. It's such an interesting thing to think about, others having words that we do not. Maybe in the future we'll have words just like those that will mean the things we do not have a name for.

     Here is a link to one of the articles that I used if you want to read more on the topic: http://theweek.com/articles/468753/14-wonderful-words-english-equivalent

Monday, January 19, 2015

Sports and Family

             Over the weekend most New Englander's prepared for a big game for their hometown team the Patriots. I prepared with my family. Besides the chaos I was facing within my family the game allowed us to have a good time and relax. I spent the game with my aunt Tara, my two cousins Kristen and Lisa, and my boyfriend. We made homemade pizza and calzone. After the game we celebrated with sweets from a local bakery. It was a good time and it remined me the close support  I have from my family. The game ended 45-7 the Patriots won against the Colts. The Patriots showed up to win and they truly deserved it. The super bowl should be a good match up. The Seahawks have the best defense and the Patriots have the best offense. I am hoping for the Patriots to win. I cannot wait to prepare for the superbowl game with my fmaily. Sports can bring people around to have a good time, that's what I love about sports.
 P.S. Let's go Pats!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

15 Times The Beatles were funnier than us

The Beatles had some very funny moments in their music career. Here is just a few great ones

1. The time John stated the obvious & broke the fourth wall like a character on The Office.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You
15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

2. The time they showed Paul the proper respect.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

3. The time they showed off their dance moves.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

4. The time John realized he was being watched.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

5. The time only Ringo saw that George didn’t give a crap.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

6. The time Paul kept his ego in check.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

7. The time Ringo smiled with his eyes.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

8. The time John trolled Paul.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

9. Again.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

10. And Again

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

11. And again.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

12. The time George tried to look cool and failed.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

13. The time Ringo was as inconspicuous as possible.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

14. The time George danced provocatively in front of the camera

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

15. The time Paul proved he’s the cute Beatle no matter what he does.

15 Times The Beatles Were Funnier Than You

Nail Polish to Detect Drugs


   
         The next time you are sitting in class, take a quick glance around at the girls in the classroom and count how many are wearing some form of nail polish. I will be willing to bet the majority are. It is very common that females, from grade school through grandmother-hood paint their nails for fashion, and it has become more popular recently with the longer lasting alternatives to regular polish such as shellac and gel. Now, what if that polish could be dipped in a drink and determine the presence of dangerous drugs associated with sexual assault, such as Rohypnol, Xanax, and GHB? What if a simple top-coat could save your night from getting bad fast, real fast? This is a serious issue and drugging sexual assaults have been on the rise. It is not something to take lightly, because it is far too easy for someone to put an extra drop of an odorless, colorless drug into your drink without you even knowing. So, what if a nail polish could unveil the devious drug's masked face with a simple dip through the drink?
          Well, thanks to the North Carolina State University all-male group of undergraduates who call themselves the Undercover Colors Team, Ankesh Madan, Stephen Gray, Tasso Von Windheim, and Tyler Confrey-Maloney, this is not a fantasy. This group of young men have put in the work to make this possibility a reality. However, Undercover Colors has faced great criticism from individuals and organizations due to the fact that it is supposedly not making it clear that it is not the woman's fault. People claim it makes women feel guilt if something happens because they feel as though they could have and should have protected themselves. Organizations say that women must know and understand that it is in no way their fault and they should not have to take certain precautions. Despite the controversary, the idea itself is growing in popularity and hopefully one day we will see truly incredible results from little precautions like these in protecting women from sexual assault.
For more information, visit Controversy Over Drug Detecting Nail Varnish.

Tea

Tea: this magical drink made of leaves does not only taste smooth and delicious, but has numerous health benefits. Technically tea is only available in black, white, green, and oolong. Other things like herbal teas can be many different things, like for instance chamomile tea is from the chamomile plant. Where do these benefits come from? Mainly the benefits are from phytochemicals and polyphenols.
Some benefits of tea drinking...

  • helps endurance (green tea helps burn fat for fuel)
  • may reduce the risk of heart problems
  • may prevent many cancers
  • tea destroys free radicals that can harm DNA
  • green tea helps prevent UV absorption 
  • green tea can help bone strength
  • may aid in the prevention of neurological diseases!  

There are many more benefits of tea; these are just some. Tea can be mixed with many things to dress it up too, like fruit for example. Tea has more antioxidants than coffee, and less caffeine. The lower amount of caffeine is also helpful in hydration because caffeine can affect the level of water in the body, dehydrating you. So instead of your morning coffee, try tasty tea for a change with added health benefits!

http://healthland.time.com/2012/09/04/13-reasons-to-love-tea/

Another Earth?



                 As Earth's population continues to grow at a steady rate, the question of how many will be able to fit on this planet comes to mind. As it is, it is said that there are already too many people populating the Earth. But what if there was another planet that very similar to ours that may be habitable? Could all of us just move to there if something were to happen to our Earth? There are a few planets that have very similar characteristics to our world, but one has been focused on just a smidge more. The planet is called Kepler-186f, and is very close to being the same size as Earth. It is said to have a nice breeze but it would be much colder than normal. It would be warm enough to live there though. If there was water at the surface, it would be habitable for us humans. It's interesting to think that there are other planets being discovered that could house human beings. Maybe there are already other planets that contain other types of species that we have not yet discovered as well.


For more information on the planet, here is a link on it: http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/04/17/303806575/scientists-spot-a-planet-that-looks-like-earths-cousin

Bad weather

The weather outside really is frightful and I do not want to let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.  The weather recently has been off and on.  It will go from really cold to decent day by day.  You never know with Mother Nature lately.  There are a lot of safety pre cations to be taken in the snow.  First off always make sure your lights are on, no matter if it is night time or day time.  Also drive under the speed limit if icey.  It's better to be safe then sorry.  Leave early for work if you have to, to ensure a safe arrival.  Also always wear your seat belt no matter what.  Also make sure no one messing around in the car while your driving, it could distract you and cause an accident. Also avoid playing loud music that could also distract you and cause an accident.  These steps should ensure you a safe arrival to your destination.  Unless it is the other drivers fault.  Also be safe rather than sorry, especially in the snow!

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Villains aren't so bad...


These guys don't look too friendly. And you must be thinking they are bad people. Well you guessed right! These four super villains pictured above all have done some pretty bad things, some didn't even choose for it too happen. A lot of people don't like the villains in anything. From books, to movies, and to video games, people just despise them. Growing up with an older brother, he always got to pick sides first. I always ended up on the bad guys. But for some reason, I liked it. These Marvel comics super villains look incredibly cool, and they are the driving for throughout the comic. It gives the hero a motive to fight and stand up for what is right. Green Goblin, (Top left) plays a huge role as one of Spider-Man's big enemies. From throwing pumpkin bombs to gas grenades, his huge goal is to take out Peter Parker. But why you ask? It's because Peter lied to his once friend. Harry Osborn was dying and needed Peter's blood to save him. Peter refused to give to Harry, leaving his friend to grow more sick and become desperate to survive. He found an antibiotic in his father's secret lab with other technology, leading him to insanity. This gave him the urge to kill Peter for letting his father die from the same not curable disease. Venom (top right) didn't even choose to become Venom. A parasite called Symbiote, which takes over an entire person body affected Peter for a while, slowly turning him evil. He soon realized strong sound waves made the Symbiote fall off and search for a new host. Eddie Brock, the next victim would soon become one with the Symbiote. Brock is a journalist who exposes the identity of a serial killer only for the real killer to be caught by Spider-Man, Brock having accused the wrong man. Disgraced and suicidal, Brock comes into contact with an alien Symbiote, rejected by Peter Parker. The Symbiote bonds with Brock becoming Venom and together they seek out revenge against their mutual enemy. So the heroes create the bad guys. How do they do this? It's because of their bad actions to normal people, affecting them hugely and changing their entire lives.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Mickey Mouse has...measles?

      The place where dreams come true...and apparently where you can get measles. Nine cases of the measles have been confirmed by California health officials. All of them had either visited Disneyland or Disney California Adventure Park. Measles, which is a respiratory disease spread through an airborne virus, is common in countries with low health care opportunities. Of course, Disneyland and Disney World attract tourists from all over the world, including those type of countries. Health officials believe that the virus was brought in by someone from a foreign country, and spread throughout the park. There is a vaccine for measles, and it is recommended that everyone gets it, especially children.

Source: http://www.cnn.com/2015/01/07/health/disneyland-measles/index.html

Caramel Apples...beware

My mom recently brought home caramel apples that her friend, who runs a catering service, made. So, I had one, and then the following day I heard about caramel apples being linked to listeria. I was nervous and shocked, but considering the apple I had was homemade, I wasn't too worried about it. Today, I went on CNN to look for something interesting to write about and a story popped up about the caramel apples. In an article written by Jen Christensen, it is said that three people have died due to listeria, and it is the supposed cause of two more deaths. Not only has the outbreak affected Americans, but a couple cases have been reported in Canada. Symptoms include muscle aches, headaches, loss of balance, fever, and convulsions. Evidence of these symptoms can appear anywhere from 3 to 70 days after consumption of the product. Following the outbreak, many companies began recalling their candy/caramel apple products, and the Food and Drug Administration continues to keep an eye on such organizations and products.

Friday, January 9, 2015

The 2024 Olympic Games

Controversially, Boston has been chosen to be the city to represent America in the bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics.  If chosen, this would be the first time since the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta that the United States would host the Summer Olympics.  Much debate is going on, with many people for and many people against the Olympics being in Boston.  Taxes would need to be raised in order to construct new facilities to hold the games, and citizens of the city are afraid that we could easily go over budget.  People also complain that it could hurt the environment and cause even larger amounts of traffic.  More optimistic Bostonians say that few buildings would actually need to be built, since so many facilities are in the area.  Construction would also supply jobs, and help revamp the infrastructure of the city (like the buses, the T, and the sidewalks).

What can and is being argued is whether or not the stress is worth it.  What cannot be argued is that if the Olympics were to be held in Boston, many memories would be made and pride for the city, and even the country, would be abundant.


















For more on the debate, see:
http://espn.go.com/boston/story/_/id/12139219/boston-olympics-bad-idea-2024


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Stay active

Video games are a big trend. Since the new play station four and the Xbox one came out people have been hooked. Kids from ages four to eighty are hooked on these games.  In my opinion they are taking over people's lives.  People eat sleep and breath video games now a days.  Some kids don't even associate with others unless it's over the video game mic which is pretty sad.  When I was young I was outside every day and that was a blast.  Now all kids do is stair at the tv screen.  This is a reason for the obesity rate going up.  People just sit all day inside instead of being active outside.  If things keep going like this Americas future is very fat.  It is not only the video games but also the phones, iPads, computers,etc. cyber bullying is caused because people don't have to say mean things to someone's face.  Kids need to get outside and play not sit on electronics. It's scary to think that these electronics are taking over people's lives. It is definitely not healthy to be starring at a screen all day long.  We need to help get kids more active instead of sitting inside twiddling there thumbs on these electronics. Organizations like nickelodeons hour of play help these cause but we need more.  There tv station is shut off for an hour a couple times a year to get kids out to play.  This is just the start let's finish it and help get people more active.





Friday, January 2, 2015

Moon Vine and Ceres

Technology has once again impacted our exploration of space this week, as NASA's Dawn Mission and astronaut Terry Virts have seen first hand. Not only is the Dawn Mission, which has explored other regions of the asteroid belt before, headed for the largest body in the asteroid belt, but an astronaut on the International Space Station took a vine of the Moon. 
The Dawn Mission is now in flight for the large object named Ceres. It is going to land on Ceres on on March 6, 2015. Plus, now thanks to the Hubble Space craft, we have a picture of Ceres and can see the different shadings of the mass. However as the time of landing gets closer, and the Dawn Mission gets closer, we will have better and better images of it. 
Even though the picture is not of high resolution and the pixels are poor at representing Ceres, astronauts used this image to help plan for the mission.

Another exhilarating thing that happened this week was that an astronaut, Terry Virts, took a Vine of the moonset from the ISS. Virts said himself that the Moon, "appears to land on a soft pillow of clouds." All this information is from NASA's Instagram, and what I found most interesting about this post was that the ISS experiences about sixteen sunsets, sunrises, moonsets, and moonrises in ones day. This is because the ISS goes so fast around Earth, completely orbiting every ninety minutes. Imagining seeing that many opposed to one of each every day befuddles me. I think it would be an amazing sight to see.