Friday, December 16, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Overstuffed Edition

I haven't given you fun facts in a week (I was out of town!), so you need an overstuffed edition of fun facts. Also, I went to a work holiday party and I am overstuffed with food. So... with all that, fun facts! You will be overstuffed with them!

Today is the 238th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party.

The Tea Act of 1773, which the Boston Tea Party was protesting, lowered the price of tea.

After water, tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world.

The earliest records of tea consumption are in the 10th century BC in China.

Tea became popular during the Tang Dynasty, which is when it spread from China to Korea and Japan.

Chang'an (present day Xi'an) was the capital during the time of the Tang Dynasty and was the most populous city in the world at that time.

The Tang Dynasty developed woodblock printing.

Block printing was used in 15th century Europe as a cheaper alternative to movable type. Entire pages of books were cut into a block and then were printed by rubbing onto one side of paper.

Block printing was also used for creating playing cards.

The 52 card deck, with 4 suits of 13 cards is known as the French Deck.

The Jack is also known as the Knave, but the name was changed by Samuel Hart when he printed a J instead of a Kn on the card.

In traditional French decks, the Jack of Diamonds is the only card to show only one eye. The Jack of Diamonds is historically designed to be based on Hector, the Trojan prince and greatest Trojan fighter in the Trojan War.

The Trojan War was started by the stealing/elopement of Helen by Paris.

Helen is usually said to be the daughter of Leda and Zeus, who seduced/raped Leda in the form of a swan.

A group of swans is called a bevy. A group of flying swans is called a wedge.

The Queen of England retains the right of ownership of all unmarked mute swans in open water.

Catherine of Braganza, wife of King Charles II of England, introduced the custom of drinking tea to Britain.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Honey Badgers

Honey Badgers are closely related to weasels and not closely related to other badgers.

Honey Badgers are also known as Ratel, which is an Afrikaans word for honeycomb.

The Honey Badger has a gestation period of approximately six months, usually births 2 cubs, who are born blind.

Honey Badgers are mostly solitary creatures and little is known about their life expectancy and mating habits in the wild.

The Honey Badger can use tools!

They have very few natural predators due to their tough skin and aggressive nature. They are tireless in battle and can beat much larger animals by fighting until the other animal gets tired and quits.

They are mostly carnivores, but will also eat berries, roots, and bulbs.

Honey Badgers can eat poisonous animals like Cobras.

The Honey Badger will eat all parts of their prey, including hair, feather, and bone.

Honey Badger doesn't give a shit.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Cheese

Cheddar, Mozzarella, Swiss, and American cheese can prevent tooth decay.

Though it was commonly thought that cheese caused bad dreams, but in 2005 the British Cheese Board did a study to determine that cheese, because it contains tryptophan, actually helps with sleep.

Monterey Jack cheese contains tyramine, an organic compound thought to be associated with headaches; it is recommended as one of the few cheeses that is safe to eat for migraine sufferers.

Parmesan cheese has a very strong smell due to the aroma-active compounds, which makes it smell slightly like vomit. But in a good way.

Cheese facts seemed like a great idea in concept, but proved difficult in practice.

Meow! Catty Snap Judgements of "The Bachelor" Contestants

Kel complained non-stop about blogging The Bachelorette. And then Kel complained non-stop about blogging Bachelor Pad (p.s. - Kasey and Vienna broke up, shocking exactly no one). And with the new season of The Bachelor coming up, Kel and Jen cannot wait to blog about it (and, at least in the case of Kel, complain about it!). It will be premiering on January 2 and we can guarantee that we will be there! Watching and blogging! However, January 2 is a long way off, so to tide you over until then, we are going to judge all the girls based on their picture and mini bio from Which of these lovely ladies will win Wino's "heart?" And will she callously reject him on national TV again?

Amber, 23, Delivery and Labor Nurse
Kel: Cute, very pretty hair. I'm concerned that her favorite book is "Eat Pray Love" and her worst date memory is falling down? How is that bad?
Jen: I've never read "Eat Pray Love," but the movie was incredibly lame. And Kel doesn't think falling down is bad because she falls down all the time. I'm more concerned that she's from Canada. Those Canadians are shady.

Amber, 28, Critical Care Nurse (they are like the same person!)
Kel: Super fun earrings! On desert island, she would bring flint, a knife, and beer...practical and fun. And her greatest achievement is her career. She seems far too normal to be on this show.
Jen: Two nurses named Amber! Oh dear! She's a Nebraska girl who drinks beer and loves her career. WHAT ARE YOU DOING ON THIS SHOW, AMBER!? RUN IN THE OTHER DIRECTION! YOU CAN DO BETTER!

Anna, 25, Student
Kel: Whoa poofy hair. Skydiving = cool. Best trip = Greek Islands and Ibiza = too much money and I hate you.
Jen: Another Canadian! OH MY GOSH, THEY'RE TRYING TO INVADE VIA BAD REALITY TV! I do like that she went skydiving, but it's probably just to practice invading the U.S. in case "The Bachelor" doesn't work out. Seriously, though, her hair is kind of crazy.

Blakely, 24, VIP Cocktail Waitress (What does that even mean? Is that like Playboy Club?)
Kel: She looks fake, but again with the fantastic earrings. Pet teacup Chihuahua = annoying Paris Hilton. Favorite actor being Edward Norton = maybe some taste. Being named Blakely = parents who hate you.
Jen: FAKE SMILE! I already don't trust her. She will stab a bitch in the back for fake reality-TV love. And she has a tattoo on her stomach? That just seems stupid. Also, she named her Chihuahua "Halo." This girl has no brain.

Brittney, 26, Medical Sales Rep
Kel: She looks super sweet. She will cry. Super practical in her taking of sunscreen and a flare gun to a desert island. Loves her grandparents. Football fan. I see potential, though I'm guessing she is naive.
Jen: She's a sweet as sugar pie! She will last for about 3 seconds before she starts sobbing. But, as Kelly pointed out, she's practical and likes football. I think Wino should just marry her right now.

Casey, 26, Trading Clerk
Kel: She has a touch of the crazy eyes. Favorite book is "Catcher in the Rye," which is cool. Falling in love with Holden Caulfield is weird. Best date is laughing all night, so she may have some potential.
Jen: Anybody who admits to a national audience that she peed her pants in 7th grade is either extremely confident or very stupid. I guess I should give her the benefit of the doubt ... but Kel is right, she does have the crazy eyes.

Courtney, 28, Model
Kel: Whoa crazy eyes! Did you ever watch "Kyle XY," season 2 when they had Jessie XX? And she was slightly unstable and had crazy eyes? That is Courtney. And hse is in love with love. Holy Drama, Batman!
Jen: Eek! She scares me. Courtney says that she got a puppy for Christmas, but I think she probably wanted it for ritual slaughter. She also says, "All I want is to find the right guy & love him forever." More like tie him up in the basement forever.

Dianna, 30, Nonprofit Director
Kel: Has a good job, has an autographed picture of JC Chasez, likes to camp, can't cook. I like her. She is way too normal for this show.
Jen: I don't trust anybody who loves Oprah or camping. Next!

Elyse, 24, Personal Trainer
Kel: She looks genuinely happy in her photo. She seems very fun and confident. And she grew up with a hardworking mom. Again, I like her, but she seems too normal.
Jen: She's pretty, and in a normal way! She's wearing a bit too much makeup (they all are) but she looks and seems like a normal person. Hon, I think you're on the wrong reality show.

Emily, 27, PhD Student
Kel: Seems smart, especially with her favorite book being "East of Eden." And she tries to use zumba moves on the dance floor. So, smart and dorky! I hope she makes it far!
Jen: I like that she knows that tipping a waitress like crap is wrong. She gets an automatic 10 points from me for that. She seems smart, and I am amused by the fact she was matched to her brother on a dating website. Emily, you are officially one of my favorites. (That means she will probably get out the first night.)

Erika, 23, Law Student
Kel: She has a tattoo on her lip? I assume on the inside? What is the point of that? Also, owwwww! Other than that, she seems bland.
Jen: Crazy eyes plus tattoo on her lip = RUN THE OTHER WAY, WINO! SHE WANTS TO EAT YOUR SOUUUUUUUL! Oh wait, ABC already ate your soul? Carry on.

Holly, 34, Pharmaceutical Sales Rep
Kel: She looks fake. And her answers make her sound fake. Not feeling her. Also, her worst date was because it was with a geek? Not ok.
Jen: I just threw up a little in my mouth. Vapid bitch.

Jaclyn, 27, Advertising Account Manager
Kel: Hello fake smile! Wants to be Gisele Bundchen, reads Jodi Picoult, wants to be whisked away to an undisclosed location, and likes to stroll the city while holding hands. Oh honey, no! Way to be bland and a stereotype.
Jen: Her face says, "Help! They're holding me here at gunpoint!" And her answers are such stereotypes, I'm pretty sure she's a hostage. Somebody save her!

Jamie, 25, Registered Nurse
Kel: Very pretty. Likes to read Danielle Steele and Nora Roberts, which I will not judge as I've never read them and I enjoy romance novels, too. She could go either way.
Jen: Pretty woman, but I can see her being forgotten in the parade of skinny white women with perfect teeth on this show. Her answers are totally forgettable.

Jenna, 27, blogger
Kel: Favorite book is the "Unbearable Lightness of Being." Likes to approach men and not wait for them to approach her. Thinks kissing in the rain is stupid. And she is wearing green earrings. Maybe my favorite so far.
Jen: She seems funny, smart and interesting. It'll never last.

Jennifer, 28, Accountant
Kel: Holy fake smile, Batman. And the crazy eyes. Favorite book is "The Notebook." Enough said.
Jen: Wait, she thinks love stories are unrealistic but likes "The Notebook?" Are you stupid? Also, she looks insane.

Kacie, 24, Administrative Assistant
Kel: Big reader = good. Has many of the same answers as everyone else, otherwise = boring. However, very pretty. Nice hair and fun earrings.
Jen: Pretty, with a real smile. But I agree with Kel, her answers are pretty much the same as everyone else. Yawn.

Lindzi, 27, Business Development Manager
Kel: Crazy eyes! And would bring a sombrero, pool float toys and her camera on a desert island. Way to be practical. Can change a tire = good. Thinks this makes her special = bad.
Jen: I agree, lots of women know how to change a tire. (Though, I don't. But I bet I could figure it out!) She seems dopey, both in her pictures and her answers.

Lyndsie, 29, Internet Entrepreneur (what the hell does that mean?)
Kel: Claims to be real, yet her hair looks uber uber fake. Other than that, I actually kind of like her. Fun answers to her questions.
Jen: A British gal! Whoa! I bet she's really Canadian, though. I tell you, they're taking over! She's wearing WAY too much makeup. I'm afraid she's actually like 87 years old under there.

Monica, 33, Dental Consultant
Kel: Her picture looks like a picture for an ID card. Why are all these girls hopeless romantics? And what does that even mean?
Jen: Lip gloss, pina coladas and the love of her life on a desert island. She'd be fish food, unless she plans to eat the love of her life. And, I agree with Kel - stop saying you're a "hopeless romantic." Lame!

Nicki, 26, Dental Hygienist
Kel: She looks perky. Seems to have normal values, but also seems like a "hopeless romantic."
Jen: "Perky" is the right word, Kel. I mean, one of her best attributes is "I'm fun!" I also love her use of the term "flirtatious eye contact."

Rachel, 27, Fashion Sales Rep
Kel: Has a nose stud. Moved to NYC without knowing anyone there = awesome. Oprah Bookclub reader = not as awesome.
Jen: I like that she seems to be confident. I mean, you have to be to move somewhere and not know anybody. Also, I'm with her with wanting to know what it's like to be a guy. Good answer! Color me intrigued.

Samantha, 26, Advertising Account Manager
Kel: Oooo earrings (I apparently have an earring thing today)! Wants Prince Charming. Barf.
Jen: She needs to stop with the princess myth thing. Hurl! And if the worst thing you've ever done is spilled a drink on your crotch, you live a charmed life. Get off my TV, immediately.

Shawn, 28, Financial Advisor
Kel: Oh my God! another "romantic". vomit.
Jen: Wanting to be a person in a third world country so you can experience how blessed you are is tacky. You suck.

Sheryl, old, none
Kel: WTF?
Jen: I hope Wino picks her, just because it would be SOMETHING different in this sea of cookie-cutter clones.

Shira, ??, Actress
Kel: Again, WTF? Pretty sure she's crazy.
Jen: I immediately distrust anybody who won't say their age, especially when they're as young as Shira apparently is. However, Baby Sebastian Ted Striker is a pretty epic name for a cat.

In conclusion, we just have to say: It's going to be hard to keep these girls all straight, because they're all skinny, pretty white girls who wear too much makeup and are hopeless romantics. Oh, and it's going to be a delightful train wreck to watch!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Killer Food

Rabbit: If you eat nothing but rabbit, you will die. Rabbit is full of protein, but not vitamins, so you use more vitamins to digest it than you get from eating it. So on a diet of only rabbit, the more you eat of it, the quicker you die.

Mushrooms: Out of Death Cap, Peppery Milk Cap, Destroying Angel, and Trumpet of Death, the Trumpet of Death is the only one that is not poisonous. Death by mushroom is very uncommon.

Milk and Bread: If you eat nothing but bread and milk, you will dehydrate and eventually die.

Puffer Fish: The puffer fish is the second most poisonous vertebrate in the world. Fugu is the dish made from Puffer Fish and costs approximately $50 for a dish of it. If prepared incorrectly, it will cause numbness, vomiting, dizziness, and possibly muscle paralysis, which can lead to death.

Chocolate: Chocolate can be poisonous in large doses. 22 lbs will kill a human.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts:Pirates ride at Disney

The Pirates of the Caribbean attraction can be found at Disneyland, Disney World, Tokyo Disney and Disneyland Paris.

Pirates was the last attraction Walt Disney personally participated in designing.

The song that plays is called Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me) and is loosely based on the Robert Lewis Stevenson sea shanty Dean Man's Chest. The music was written by George Burns, who also did the music for The Jungle Book.

The ride lasts 15 1/2 minutes at Disneyland, but only 8 1/2 minutes at Disney World.

It is one of my favorite rides at Disney World and I have been known to ride it multiple times in a row.

Why I Can't Help But Like "2 Broke Girls"

It has a lot of problems - mostly some questionable, at best, racial stereotypes and some jokes about sexual harassment and rape that probably don't need to be made - but "2 Broke Girls" has a lot going for it, too.

I started watching the show for the sole reason that it stars Kat Dennings, who is funny and quirky. I loved seeing her get a sitcom, and I wanted things to go well for her.

But just liking an actor on a show is not enough for me to stick with it. I have a LOT of shows on my DVR, and if a show isn't worth watching, I don't have the time or DVR space to keep recording and watching it.

The show, if you haven't seen it, follows two young women in Brooklyn. One of them is Max (Dennings), who works in a diner and as a nanny in Tribeca to make ends meet. She's poor, sarcastic and streetwise. She meets Caroline (Beth Behrs), the formerly rich daughter of a man now in jail for a Ponzi scheme. The two decide to live together, work together and save money together to try to start a cupcake business.

One of my favorite things about "2 Broke Girls" is the fact that the show features two women who seem to genuinely like each other. So often on TV or in movies, women are only supposed to be "frenemies," but there is no bitchy competition between Max and Caroline. Like any roommates, they don't always get along and don't always see eye-to-eye on every issue, but they never really tear each other down. I mean, their jokes get kind of mean sometimes, but my jokes with my friends get pretty barbed, too - it doesn't mean that I really want them to fail. Their friendship is refreshing.

It's also refreshing that Max and Caroline don't always talk about boys and shoes. The show doesn't just pass the Bechdel test - it shatters it. Obviously, they do talk about boys sometimes, but then they move on to other things, like their budding business.

That's another tick in the plus column for "2 Broke Girls" - it features women working on running a business, and actually doing a pretty good job of it. It really makes Caroline into a more well-rounded character. It would have been extremely easy to make Caroline into a ditzy blond rich girl, but even though the writers mine some humor from Caroline's sheltered upbringing, she's also a smart businesswoman. After she gets over the fact that her trust fund isn't coming back anytime soon, she also starts to adapt very well to her new lifestyle. It's great that the "2 Broke Girls" writers resisted the urge to make Caroline a stupid rich girl who refuses to adjust to her situation. It would have killed the show anyway, because it wouldn't have been believable for Max to spend time with somebody that stupid.

And finally, "2 Broke Girls" is often pretty funny. Yes, some of the jokes fall flat, but a lot of them hit the mark, too. Sure, some of the humor is pretty crass - some of their favorite subjects are horse poop, genitals and sex - but I am pretty immature, so they make me laugh.

"2 Broke Girls" has a long way to go to become a classic sitcom, and it may just be another in a long line of sitcoms that only last a couple of seasons. But we can hope that "2 Broke Girls" is a step in the right direction toward having better female characters and relationships between female characters on TV.

And if it's not, at least I'm having fun watching it.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Miss Piggy

I haven't yet seen the new Muppets movie because I live in the middle of nowhere, but I've heard it is great. To celebrate that fact, today's fun facts are all about Miss Piggy (fun fact number 1, Miss Piggy is the shit!).

Miss Piggy's first appearance was in 1974 on Herb Alpert and the TJB where she sang "I Can't Give You Anything But Love"

Miss Piggy wrote a book in 1981 that spent 28 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller list. It is called Miss Piggy's Guide to Life.

Miss Piggy has a pet poodle named Foo-Foo. Foo-Foo is a white poodle.

Miss Piggy met Kermit at the Miss Bogen County beauty contest, which she won.

Miss Piggy took a correspondence course in Karate and also studied at Master Chang's Charm School and Karate Dojo.

In 1995, the Muppets released an album called Kermit Unpigged, where Miss Piggy did a duet with Ozzy Osbourne on Born to be Wild.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Kel's Fun Facts: Pencils

I had a friend in college who always wrote with an old school pencil, which I always found odd. But lately, I've been writing with a basic pencil and I quite enjoy it. Not sure why, but there you are!

In related news, it is the return of daily fun facts! I was out of town for Thanksgiving (went to New York City! Yay!) and then was just lazy getting back into fun facts, but today I was inspired, but pencils! You are excited, right?

Pencil lead is actually graphite.

The world pencil comes from Old French pincel, which means small paintbrush, which comes from the Latin word pencillus, which means little tail.

The only large scale deposit of graphite in solid form is in Cumbria, England, and was discovered sometime in the 16th century and was originally used for marking sheep.

Hymen Lipman was the first person to patent a pencil with an eraser in 1858.

Even though the "lead" in pencils is not lead, pencils used to cause lead poisoning due to the lead from the paint in the wooden part.

The #2 pencil in the US is an HB pencil in the rest of the world, which means that it is slightly harder and slightly blacker than the exact middle of the scale of pencils.

Roald Dahl used only pencils with yellow casing to write his books.