PLEASE STOP TAKING
PICTURES OF THIS
SIGN WHILE DRIVING
A sign warns drivers on the highway heading into St. Louis, Missouri, from Illinois.
It’s Okay. I was a passenger.
I laughed when I saw these two posts together on my Facebook timeline. A coincidence?
I saw this Facebook post on my phone screen: “This Food Poisoning Expert Revealed The 6 Things He Refuses to Eat.” Followed by the post “TO DIE FOR CARROT CAKE.” I checked, and thankfully the carrot cake is NOT one of the 6 items on the avoid list. However, the cake does look so rich that you might just die from bliss as well as sugar shock.
Here are the links to the posts:
The Google Doodle changes every day. Yesterday, when I opened my Google Chrome home page I saw that the Google Doodle was composed of birthday cakes. I thought “Well, isn’t that a coincidence, today’s my birthday.” Well, there are no coincidences with Google. When my mouse passed over the Doodle, I got a birthday greeting.
Of course, Google knows my birthday. And pretty much everything else about me. Yikes! I can’t complain, because I’ve willingly given Google my information so that I can use its services. I haven’t told Google my cell phone number, yet. I’m sure Google knows that, too, though.
I checked my husband’s Google home page yesterday, and his Google Doodle was different from mine, the one for the ordinary non-birthday people.
Usually, I don’t pay that much attention to the Doodle except when there’s a fuss over the Doodle subject. Google sometimes features obscure and controversial figures rather than major events and holidays. I guess that’s a way to keep things interesting. It got my attention!
Next year, when I’m expecting a birthday greeting from Google, Google may ignore me!
To learn more about Google Doodles, check out this blog post from my friend Planetjan.
Now that all of the holiday events are behind us, including that long stretch of food-eating extravaganzas from Thanksgiving dinner, Christmas parties through New Year’s Day buffets, we can now reflect on 2013 and resolve for 2014. Here’s a funny video about guests and their many eating quirks. Lucky me, I can eat almost anything!
I’m tacking on this 2013 annual report from WordPress. The kindly people at WordPress noted that many of my top posts were not written this past year. Rather than saying that I was lazy in 2013, they said this: “Some of your most popular posts were written before 2013. Your writing has staying power! Consider writing about those topics again.” Hope to see you all in 2014.
Here’s an excerpt:
The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 36,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 13 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.
“The perfect candle scent for Mackinac Island would be a layer of fudge-scented wax, then a layer of lilac, then at the bottom a layer of horse manure,” joked Joe, one of our carriage drivers on our recent (and first) trip to Mackinac Island, a beautiful island in Lake Huron just between Michigan’s Upper and Lower penisulas.
Unfortunately, we just missed lilac season, but we did see plenty of fudge shops and horses, when my husband and I visited in late June. There are more than a hundred varieties of the Common Lilac on Mackinac Island, which celebrates lilacs with a 10-day festival every mid-June, which concludes with a horse-drawn lilac parade. I’d love to return for that event.
Even though no cars, trucks or other motorized vehicles are allowed on the island, there’s a lot of traffic with horse-drawn carriages, people on horseback as well as hundreds of bicyclists and thousands of walkers. (The island does allow one police car, one ambulance and some electric golf carts on the golf course.)
Six fudge companies operate fudge shops on Mackinac Island, Michigan. Since each company seems to have at least two shops and some operate even more, that’s a lot of fudge on this small island. There are competing fudge shops next door to each other and some companies have opened fudge shops on opposite sides of the street — sort of like Starbucks Coffee. But, honestly, can you ever have enough fudge? There are as many as 15,000 tourists a day in peak season, so there is an enormous market for fudge. I bought fudge at Murdick’s Fudge. The Murdick Family opened its fudge shop in 1887, when sailmakers Henry and Rome Murdick came to Mackinac Island to make giant awnings for The Grand Hotel (the hotel was constructed in only 93 days!)
I bought the fudge for a gift, but I’m hoping the recipients will offer me a taste. (Yes, I managed to come home with uneaten fudge.) I’ve been known to preach (or even screech) about the dangers of sugar, but calorie counts don’t apply to any food eaten or bought on vacation, so I’ve been told. Even sugar is exempted. (Ok, even I don’t believe that.) But an occasional very small indulgence is good for the food soul. I’ll take a couple of extra laps around the neighborhood.
Mackinac Island, which is 3.8 square miles, has 80 miles of trails, if you want to walk off your fudge there. The entire island is a National Historic Landmark and 80 percent of it is Mackinac Island State Park. Initially, it was the second U.S. National Park, but the Feds later turned it over to the state of Michigan.
Facebook and Google “know” too much about me already, yet I can’t let go. I promise to post my writing soon. It’s in the works. But Shouts from the Abyss always has something intriguing to say, so I’m happy to share. Google, are you listening?
Another excellent post from Planetjan. The videos are excellent, the commentary is superb. Don’t take your teachers for granted! Click on “reblogged from Planetjan” to read the entire post and see the two great videos.
Thanks to Michelle, my former student teacher who is now gainfully employed, for sharing this. Today was a very long day and even though I’ve heard versions of this, with the graphics and the voiceover, it was just what I needed after another day of “making a difference.”
“How was it coming back after break,” some idiot asked. Well, actually, it was like getting slapped in the face with a cold fish. It didn’t help that no sooner had school started than Student #32 was dropped off on my doorstep. He’s from Korea and doesn’t know a word of English. I didn’t have a desk for him and ended up rearranging the entire classroom to handle what is beginning to resemble a small city of rather small people.
Here’s the difference I’ve made in the three days I’ve been back.
1) Said student from Korea can now say, “Teacher!” I’ve…
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One of the first things I do each day is check my email, cheerfully hoping for a few personal emails in my inbox. I got some personal emails, all right, from people telling me that I’d been the victim of a spammer who had hijacked my address book to contact EVERYONE on it with a link to Viagra sales.
I checked the returned mail, and the faux address on each link was different. Many sounded harmless, such as “How to remove pet stains,” which is exactly the sort of link I would send. Others were a bit racier, including the word jerk or similar, and these weren’t recipes for jerk chicken. No matter what the link said, apparently they were all for Viagra sales.
On the bright side, I heard from people I hadn’t heard from in years, which was delightful. I emailed as many people as I could to warn them not to open the link. I realized that there were many people in my address book I didn’t even realize were there, such as people who were on other people’s mailing lists who emailed me. There were city councilmen, customer service addresses, people I freelanced for (now I look super duper professional sending out that spam crap, eh?)
Anyway, I hope I didn’t do any damage. I’m grateful for everyone’s understanding, and I’m even fortunate to have touched base with some old friends! Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy New Year.