I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving last week. I did as it is always one of the best holidays of the year. I wish there were more like this when all we have is a feast and of course “football.” I am sure the NFL did get a larger share of viewership, at least for Thursday.
I did buy and bring the Carando ham, threw away the glaze packet and made the recipe in last weeks letter. It is a mustard based glaze and not as sweet as the brown sugar based glaze that comes with the ham. I was happy with it however, on Thanksgiving, Turkey is always the star of the show so a lot was left over. I am going to try my skill at making a ham and bean soup as I am not much of a pea soup fan.
As I remember a few years ago I went to a neighbor state, Connecticut, the place of my birth to visit a museum. It was the dinosaur museum and state park just outside Hartford. It was my second visit as during my first I wanted to make a casting of a dinosaur print in plaster. However my first visit happened to be too late in the day to make a casting due to the drying time involved. So this particular visit I was quite early, actually just after opening. I was also first in line in the area that makes the castings as there are only so many casting stations. If you plan to visit you need to bring all material needed so check their webpages for materials involved and the daily activities and times. This would be very educational for all children and grandchildren.
My print currently is located in the cellar/movie room on a book shelf. It would be on the wall but the best quote I could get for a custom frame was $250, an amount I considered ridiculous since my entire cost of the project was less than $20. My casting is a circle about 15" in diameter and the print on this piece of plaster is of three toes roughly 9" wide and 13 inches long, a raptor print. It just sits on the shelf gathering dust but it is a keepsake of my life. My current plan for a frame right now is just a piece of rope to encircle the circumference. I think the rope needs to be 1.5" to 2" in diameter and whatever length 2 pi R equals (51.21") .
You might wonder why I am thinking of this print? Well it appears that the worlds longest run of prints for a dinosaur has been discovered. They actually have 110 steps of the beast so it’s size can be calculated, plus other data about the beast.
Imagine a dinosaur footprint as long as a young child is tall. Now, imagine 110 of them. Amazingly, that's what paleontologists have discovered in eastern France — 110 fossilized footprints belonging to a long-necked sauropod that lived during the Jurassic period.
This footprint path is more than 500 feet long, the footprint-speckled path is also the longest sauropod trackway on record. This lengthy trackway is a few yards longer than the previous record holders: a 465-foot-long and a 482-foot-long sauropod trackway in Galinha, Portugal, dating to the middle Jurassic period.
The sauropod's circular feet were big: 37 inches by 40 inches, but the total footprint length could reach up to 10 feet (3 m) when considering the mud ring that was displaced by each step.
Based on its front and rear print distance length, the herbivorous sauropod was likely 115 feet long and weighed up to 40 tons. This would explain its average stride length of about 9 feet.
The study was published in the August 2017 issue of the journal Geobios.
Patty happens to like deviled eggs. If attending a party or gathering it is quick and easy to make.
Classic Savory Deviled Eggs (www.allrecipes.com)
6 hard-cooked eggs, halved
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
½ teaspoon chopped fresh dill
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
12 sprigs fresh dill (optional)
Scoop egg yolks into a bowl and set egg whites aside. Mash yolks, mayonnaise, vinegar, ½ teaspoon chopped dill, Dijon mustard, garlic powder, and salt. Spoon yolk mixture into egg whites. Garnish with dill sprigs. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
This is from the Curious Mind Magazine (I can’t find the date) located in the health section.
Neuroscientists Finally Revealed the Number One Exercise For Slowing down The Aging Process.
As we grow old, some of us start developing a rather negative relationship with the mirror because it starts showing off our grey hairs, our body’s saggy parts, and the many lines on our face that come with age.
However, you can improve the relationship you have with your mirror because neuroscientists have finally found an enjoyable way to slow down the aging process.
According to a study published in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience Journal, people who are physically active can slow down their brain’s aging process. Neuroscientists behind this study say that dancing is the most effective physical activity.
According to Dr. Kathrin Rehfeld, the lead author of the study, physical exercise has an effect of slowing down and even preventing the decline in both mental and physical activity in the brain that comes with its natural aging process.
The researchers selected 52 elderly volunteers aged 63-80 years for the purpose of the study. Then, they divided them randomly into two groups, one group was assigned to join dance classes, and the other group joined the sports control group.
The dance group took dance lessons with a constant change of choreography which moves they were asked to memorize. The program for the sports group, on the other hand, consisted of strength training, endurance training, and flexibility training.
The hippocampus area of the brain which is the most susceptible to decline because of the aging processes has increased in both groups. This area of the brain is also responsible for memory, balance, as well as learning. But, only volunteers in the dance group had an increased volume of other subparts in the left hippocampus. Moreover only dancing had increased the volume of one part in the right hippocampus called the subiculum.
Okay, I am stopping here. I can already see where this article is going, choreography. Since the hippocampus area of the brain deals with memory in both hemispheres for both long and short term, learning new chirography would in fact, at least to me allow for some expansion of memory. I am not sure how this can be measured as I am not in the field of neuroscience but it will not be in a physical form of measurement. If it happened to be a physical change my brain should be the size of a watermelon.
It will be some sort of visual or observational test or result, the type of result I consider arbitrary. Arbitrariness is the quality of being "determined by chance, whim, or impulse, and not by necessity, reason, or principle." Strength, endurance, and flexibility on the other hand, although also necessary, should not have that much influence on memory other than the initial learning stage.
I believe that everybody would like to live an independent and healthy life, for as long as possible. Physical activity is one of the lifestyle factors that can contribute to this, counteracting several risk-factors and slowing down the age-related decline.
My exercise program at the YMCA actually has both built into the “Fit for Life” program and why I go twice a week. I am sure it is why doing my biannual stress tests always seem to get better. My next one, providing I do not get a cold or something, should be the best result since retirement.
One of the reasons I live on Cape Cod is the winters are usually mild. Our nights are lately dipping into the high 20 to low 30s at present but the water surrounding us is currently 50-51 degrees and the days currently in the high 40s to low 60s. With the tides we have some creatures who become stranded during low tide and can become stunned or die due to the 30 degree night temperatures. We are currently having some ridley turtles (pleasant looking Disney type turtle) that are becoming stranded. If any are found during your beach walks, cover them up from the wind, mark the location, and call the National Marine Life Center, 508-743-9888. To report a dolphin, seal or whale stranding in southeastern Massachusetts, call 508-743-9548
The problem is much like the dolphin strandings. These animals know which way is south however they hit the arm of the Cape in their quest and become stranded. The Native Americans also knew this and found it to be a food source during the winter months. Now we try to save the creatures and use resources to move them farther south.
It is also the area of the Cape that has a low tide that retreats quite a way from shoreline. Tourists walking out in the sand bars and people clamming also get stranded during the summer months as well. It is an area that when the tide returns they find they can not get back to the beach fast enough or at least not as fast as the incoming tide that is approaching.
The National Marine Life Center is always looking for donations: Visit http://nmlc.org/
For a Tee Shirt, hat, etc visit http://www.cafepress.com/nmlc
If interested they have an annual “Mermaid Ball” www.mermaidball.com the one for this year was in August but you can plan for next year if wishing to attend.
Yesterday, I wore my Vietnam Veteran cap to Wal-Mart. There was nothing in particular that I needed at the world's largest retailer; but, since I retired, trips to "Wally World" to look at the Walmartians is always good for some comic relief. Besides, I always feel pretty normal after seeing some of the people that frequent the establishment. But, I digress,...enough of my psychological fixations. While standing in line to check out, the guy in front of me, probably in his early thirties, asked, "Are you a Viet Nam Vet?"
"No," I replied.
"Then why are you wearing that cap?"
"Because I couldn't find the one from the War of 1812..."
I thought it was a snappy retort.
"The War of 1812, huh?" the Walmartian queried, "When was that?"
God forgive me, but I couldn't pass up such an opportunity. "1946," I answered as straight-faced as possible..
He pondered my response for a moment and responded, "Why do they call it
the War of 1812 if it was in 1946?"
"It was a Black Op No one is supposed to know about it." This was beginning to be way too much fun!
"Dude! Really?" He exclaimed. "How did you get to do something that COOOOL?"
I glanced furtively around me for effect, leaned toward the guy and in a low voice said, "I'm not sure. I was the only Caucasian on the mission."
"Dude," he was really getting excited about what he was hearing, "that is seriously awesome! But, didn't you kind of stand out?"
"Not really.. The other guys were wearing white camouflage."
The moron nodded knowingly.
"Listen man," I said in a very serious tone, "You can't tell anyone about this. It's still 'top secret' and I shouldn't have said anything"
"Oh yeah?" he gave me the 'don't threaten me look.' "Like, what's gonna happen if I do?"
With a really hard look I said, "You have a family don't you? We wouldn't want anything to happen to them, would we?"
The guy gulped, left his basket where it was and fled through the door. By this time the lady behind me was about to have a heart attack she was laughing so hard. I just grinned at her.
After checking out and going to the parking lot I saw dimwit leaning in a car window talking to a young woman. Upon catching sight of me he started pointing excitedly in my direction. Giving him another 'deadly' serious look, I made the 'I see you' gesture. He turned kind of pale, jumped in the car and sped out of the parking lot.
What a great time! Tomorrow I'm going back with my Homeland Security cap.
Then the next day I will go to the license agency and wear my Border Patrol hat, and see how long it takes to empty the place.
Whoever said retirement is boring. You just need the right kind of cap!
Lately the continent of Antarctica has been consuming my brain cells. I find I know very little about it, other than it is very cold. When I was 19 and in the Navy I had volunteered to go there on a Destroyer. I managed to get myself assigned to the ship that made the trek every couple of years but once assigned the ship a diesel engine broke down and required it to be moved to a Destroyer tender located in Mayport Florida, very close to Jacksonville. To my dismay our sister-ship took the assignment and I never made it to the southern hemisphere.
Antarctica, is Earth's southernmost continent. It contains the geographic South Pole and is situated in the Antarctic region of the Southern Hemisphere, almost entirely south of the Antarctic Circle, and is surrounded by the Southern Ocean. At 5,400,000 square miles, it is the fifth-largest continent. For comparison, Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages 1.2 mi; 6,200 ft in thickness, which extends to all but the northernmost reaches of the Antarctic Peninsula.
Antarctica, on average, is the coldest, driest, and windiest continent, and has the highest average elevation of all the continents. Antarctica is a desert, with annual precipitation of only 8 in along the coast and far less inland. The temperature in Antarctica has reached -128.6 °F or even -94.7 as measured from space, though the average for the third quarter, the coldest part of the year is -81 °F. Anywhere from 1,000 to 5,000 people reside throughout the year at the research stations scattered across the continent. Organisms native to Antarctica include many types of algae, bacteria, fungi, plants, protista, and certain animals, such as mites, nematodes, penguins, seals and tardigrades. Vegetation, where it occurs, is tundra.
Although myths and speculation about a Terra Australis "Southern Land" date back to antiquity, Antarctica is noted as the last region on Earth in recorded history to be discovered and colonized by humans, unsighted until 1820 when the Russian expedition of Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev on Vostok and Mirny sighted the Fimbul ice shelf. The continent, however, remained largely neglected for the rest of the 19th century because of its hostile environment, lack of easily accessible resources, and isolation. In 1895, the first confirmed landing was conducted by a team of Norwegians.
Antarctica is a de facto condominium, governed by parties to the Antarctic Treaty System that have consulting status. Twelve countries signed the Antarctic Treaty in 1959, and thirty-eight have signed it since then. The treaty prohibits military activities and mineral mining, prohibits nuclear explosions and nuclear waste disposal, supports scientific research, and protects the continent's ecozone. Ongoing experiments are conducted by more than 4,000 scientists from many nations.
Okay, I made the ham and bean soup on Saturday. Patty did not try it, however I did and was happy. It might not be the best soup in the world as I have many contenders for the title in my mind but it was pretty good. For someone who likes to extend food, I was happy with the outcome. I had a red-headed neighbor in the Phillippines who would bring over a pot every once in a while and this was very similar, perhaps with just a little more ham.
This is from “Southern Living Annual Recipes 2005"
1 (16-ounce) packaged dried small white beans, could also be Navy but my bag said white.
3 cups chopped cooked ham
1 large sweet onion, diced (I used a large yellow onion)
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 ham bone
2 (32-ounce) containers chicken broth
½ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper flakes
(I added two bay leaves)
Sort and rinse beans. Place in a 6-quart Dutch oven, add water 2 inches above beans, and soak 8 hours. (I soaked them over night), drain.
Saute ham, onion, and garlic in hot oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat, 5 minutes or until onion is tender.
Add beans, ham bone, broth, and pepper, (bay leaves if used). Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer , stirring occasionally, 1 ½ hours or until beans are tender and soup has thicken. (beans were tender but soup was still thin) I uncovered the pot and simmered for about 40 more minutes.
Serve with Cornbread Croutons. I did not have any so I just ate it without them.
Father Murphy walked into a pub and said to the first man he met, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
The man said, "I do Father."
The priest said, "Leave this pub right now!"
He then approached a second man. Father Murphy asked, "Do you want to got to heaven?"
"Certainly, Father," was the man's reply.
"Then leave this den of Satan!" said the priest.
Father Murphy then walked up to O'Toole and asked, "Do you want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole replied: "No, I don't Father."
The priest looked him right in the eye and said, "You mean to tell me that when you die you don't want to go to heaven?"
O'Toole smiled, "Oh, when I die. Yes Father. I thought you were getting a group together to go right now."
There was a man who had worked all of his life and had saved all of his money. He was a real miser when it came to his money. He loved money more than just about anything.
And just before he died, he said to his wife, "Now listen, when I die, I want you to take all my money and place it in the casket with me. I wanna take my money to the afterlife."
So he got his wife to promise him with all her heart that when he died, she would put all the money in the casket with him.
Well, one day he died. He was stretched out in the casket, and the wife was sitting there in black next to her closest friend. When they finished the ceremony, just before the undertakers got ready to close the casket, the wife said "Wait just a minute!"
She had a shoe box with her. She came over with the box and placed it in the casket.
Then the undertakers locked the casket down and rolled it away.
Her friend said, "I hope you weren't crazy enough to put all that money in the casket."
She said, "Yes, I promised. I'm a good person. I can't lie. I promised him that I was going to put that money in that casket with him."
"You mean to tell me you put every cent of his money in the casket with him?"
"I sure did," said the wife. "I got it all together, put it into my account and I wrote him a check."
An American sailor walks up to a urinal and starts peeing. A few seconds later, a fellow Irish sailor goes to the urinal next to him and starts peeing. The American's eyes start to wander, and he can't help but look down at the Irish man's penis and notice a "W" and "Y" tattooed down there. "I'm really sorry that I looked over," says the American, "but I have to ask. Why do you have a 'WY' tattooed on your penis?" "You got me," responds the Irish sailor. "Me girl back home is named Wendy, and the tattoo says 'Wendy' when fully erect." The American nods and goes on his way.
A few days later, the American again walks up to a urinal and starts peeing. A few seconds later, a Nigerian sailor goes to the urinal next to him and starts peeing as well. Again, the American's eyes wander and, surprisingly, he sees the same "WY" tattoo on the Nigerian's penis. Shocked and confused, the American says "Look I know this sounds weird, but do you have a girl named Wendy back home waiting for you?" "No," the Nigerian responds, "I just really miss my home country so I got a tattoo that says 'Welcome to Nigeria, we hope you have a wonderful day' when fully erect."
That is all for today. George.
For a weekly letter put letter in the subject line and email email@example.com
Older copies always found on www.capecod-beaches.com, with additions of pictures or videos from my friend Walter.