Thursday, February 28, 2019

FREEZING BLUEBERRIES  Use fresh blueberries that are completely dry when you pop them in the freezer.  Don’t worry about rinsing the berries before you freeze them; simply place them, still in their original containers, in resealable plastic bags and store them on your freezer shelf.  If you prefer to rinse the blueberries first, dry them well with paper towels, then transfer them to freezer containers or resealable plastic bags for freezing.  The blueberries will freeze individually so you can remove just the portion you need.  If you didn’t wash your blueberries before freezing them, rinse them just before use.  For best results, toss your home-frozen blueberries into oatmeal, yogurt, smoothies, shakes or sauces within 10 months.

LiDAR, Radar and Sonar are the modern remote sensing techniques used by various professionals to collect and analyze data.  They use different mediums to transmit various types of signals to and from the objects and then analyze the time taken to measure the distance between the transmitter and the objects.  Read about some of the differences between the three technologies and see graphics at

November 18, 2014  For the best part of 25 years, archaeologists Arlen and Diane Chase slogged through the thick undergrowth in the west of Belize in search of an ancient city whose details had been lost to the passage of time and the decay of the jungle.  The going was tough, often requiring a machete to clear a path through the dense vines and creepers that blocked their way.  Over time, their perseverance paid off as their hand-drawn maps began to reveal long-forgotten parts of the massive Mayan city of Caracol.  But the more the pair found, the more they realized the extent of what remained uncovered.  It would take several lifetimes, they figured, to reveal the true extent of Caracol.  Then, in 2008, they got talking to a biologist colleague at the University of Central Florida where they worked.  For years, he had been using airborne laser sensors known as Lidar (Light Detection And Ranging) to map and study forests and other vegetation.  He suggested they give it a go.  So, in 2009, the pair packed away their machetes and hiking boots and commissioned the National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping (NCALM)  to fly a twin-engine plane backwards and forwards over the tree-tops firing pulses of laser light at the ground below.  A few weeks later, the pair got their first look at the results.  “I was completely astounded,” says Arlen Chase.  “We had not expected the clarity that we saw in the imagery.”  In less than a week, the team collected more data than they had in a quarter of century of hacking their way through the jungle.  Analysis revealed a host of previously undiscovered features, including several in areas that they had previously mapped on foot.  It was a revelation.  Now, archaeologists around the world are beginning to embrace the same technique, flying aircraft over everything from Stonehenge to patches of scrub, in search of hidden treasures.  The findings are already beginning to challenge conventional theories and change our view of the size and extent of ancient civilizations.  Crucially, some of the laser light is also able to penetrate vegetation.  So, in the case of areas covered in a forest canopy, such as in Caracol, some of the pulses will hit the top of tree canopy, some the middle, others the forest floor.  Software can then be used to remove the points above the ground, according to University of Alabama archaeologist Dr Sarah Parcak, who is not part of the Chase team but has used Lidar at other sites.  This leaves a detailed “digital elevation” model of the hidden forest floor with the ability to pick out features as small as 20cm across.  Curt Hopkins

The word "radar" was formed from the first letters of the term "radio detection and ranging."   Radar technology began with experiments using radio waves in the laboratory of German physicist Heinrich Hertz in 1887.  He discovered that these waves could be sent through many different materials but were reflected by others.  In 1900, a radio pioneer, Nikola Tesla, noticed that large objects could produce reflected radio waves that are strong enough to be detected.  He knew that reflected radio waves were really radio echoes.  So he predicted that such echoes could be used to find the position and course of ships at sea.  Pulse radar was introduced in the United States in 1925.  In 1935, radar was patented under British patent law partly as a result of the research led by Scottish physicist Sir Robert Alexander Watson-Watt.  This patented radar later developed into the radar system that proved effective against German air raids on Britain during World War II (1939-45).  The term "radar" was first used by U.S. Navy scientists during that war.  The word "sonar" comes from the first letters of "sound navigation ranging."  Sonar can detect and locate objects under the sea by echoes, much as porpoises and other marine animals navigate using their natural sonar systems.  There are two types of sonar sets:  active and passive.  An active sonar set sends out sound pulses called pings, then receives the returning sound echo.  Passive sonar sets receive sound echoes without transmitting their own sound signals.   It was nature itself that invented "sonic radar," or sonar, well before humans did.  For example, bats fly in the dark with poor sight without hitting obstacles and locate prey by means of sound pulses humans cannot hear.  In 1906, American naval architect Lewis Nixon invented the first sonar-like listening device to detect icebergs.  During World War I (1914-18), a need to detect submarines increased interest in sonar.  French physicist Paul Langévin constructed the first sonar set to detect submarines in 1915.  At first, these sonar sets could only "listen" to returning signals.  By 1918, Britain and the United States had built sonar sets that could send out, as well as receive, sound signals.  The U.S. military began using the term "sonar" during World War II.  The first recorded use of the technique was by Leonardo da Vinci in 1490 who used a tube inserted into the water to detect vessels by ear.  Read more and see graphics at

M’smen, a Moroccan flatbread also known as rghaif, meloui or faoud, is traditionally served with tagines or on its own with honey or Amlou.  Mesamen or musamen, also called malawi, malawah or murtabak, is a rich traditional, pancake-like bread of the Maghreb, most common to Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.  prep time, 1 hour  cook time, 10 minutes  serves 12  See also 

In its most traditional form, amlou is made from roasted almonds, argan oil and honey--all indigenous to Morocco--but some families might use walnuts, peanuts or other nuts in place of almonds.  Likewise, they might also substitute sugar for all or some of the honey.   Amlou is a dip, a thick brown paste with a texture similar to peanut butter.

Everyone has a story, and sharing these stories with one another can help build real personal connections and strengthen our community.  Bring your friends and family to have fun while the Toledo-Lucas County Public Library staff leads you through story prompts that help you share the people, places and things that make your roots.  Tuesdays in March  6:30 - 8:30 p.m. 
March 5 | Birmingham | Focus on Tradition
March 12 | Kent | Focus on Community
March 19 | Sanger | Focus on Home
March 26 | Maumee | Focus on Memories

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY  It is good to rub and polish your mind against that of others. - Michel de Montaigne, essayist (28 Feb 1533-1592)

WORD OF THE DAY  From Spanish carbonada (carbonized) (from carbonar (to carbonize)) + -ado (suffix forming past participles of regular verbs ending in -ar).  Carbonada appears to have been modelled after Italian carbonata (coal pile; stew of beef in red wine), from carbone (coal; charcoal) (from Latin carbō (coal; charcoal), from Proto-Indo-European *ker- (to burn)) + -ata.  The verb is derived from the noun.  Read more and see pictures at

February 28 is Día de Andalucía, which commemorates the day in 1980 when a referendum led to Andalusia becoming an autonomous community of Spain.  Wiktionary  Issue 2053  February 28, 2019 

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum (BICLM) houses the world’s largest collection of materials related to cartoons and comics, including original art, books, magazines, journals, comic books, archival materials, and newspaper comic strip pages and clippings.  See description of holdings and programs and link to video at   The Ohio State University - University Libraries  1858 Neil Avenue Mall | Columbus, Ohio 43210 | 614-292-OSUL (6785)

Lake Erie is the world’s 11th largest lake and one that provides drinking water to 12 million U.S. and Canadian citizens.  Toledo represents only a fraction of the entire Lake Erie basin, but it lies along the heart of the western Lake Erie shoreline—the most ecologically fragile and most biologically dynamic part of the Great Lakes basin because of its shallowness and relative warmth.  Just outside the Toledo area lies some of North America’s top fishing and birding opportunities.  Tom Henry

La Jolla is pronounced “La Hoya.”  The origin of how La Jolla (pronounced as La-HOY-a) got its name and history are unclear.  The coastal community is often mistakenly referred to as San Diego’s ‘Jewel’.  Scholars who researched La Jolla’s origin found no concrete answer to the meaning of La Jolla or exactly where it comes from.  The only thing that is certain is that “La Jolla” is not Spanish for “The Jewel”.  The coastal town is tucked away from downtown San Diego, about 30 miles north of the Mexican border.  The Kumeyaay, local Native Americans, owned the land until it was colonized.  It is unsure how long they were in charge of the land because there are no historical records or documents.  After studying artifacts that the Kumeyaay left behind, historians estimate they were there for around 3,000 years.  When natives were in charge of the land they called La Jolla “Kulaaxuuy” which translates to “land of holes”.  It is uncertain where this comes from.  Some people believe the name comes from the sea-level caves visible from La Jolla Shores.  The topography of the land suggests that because of the hills, there could have been more holes and uneven surfaces before colonization.  Despite the word “jolla” sounding Spanish, it’s not a real word.  The Spanish word “joya”, which is similar in pronunciation to jolla, translates to Jewel.  Historians believe that sometime in the 19th century when Spanish colonials arrived on the land, they accidentally called it joya.  The name has stuck ever since.

Spokane, Washington  Spo-CAN
Helena, Montana  HELL-e-na,
Oregon  ORE-uh-g’n or ORY-gun (like organ with an uh sound in the middle)
Nevada  nuh-VAD-uh (a as in dad) 
Florida  FLORE uh duh (o as in sore)

Secret ingredient in galbijjim,  a fragrant stew of short ribs and root vegetables:  Add can of Coke to the braising liquid for the short ribs.  Sam Sifton

Potatoes, eggs and coffee beans each faced the same adversity–boiling water.  However, each one reacted differently.  The potato went in strong, hard and unrelenting, but in boiling water, it became soft and weak.  The egg was fragile, with the thin outer shell protecting its liquid interior until it was put in the boiling water.  Then the inside of the egg became hard.  However, the ground coffee beans were unique.  After they were exposed to the boiling water, they changed the water and created something new.  This proverb is sometimes told with carrot replacing potato. 

Hack House Museum  775 County Street  Milan, Michigan  (734) 439-7522  Sugar cookies and a smile greet every guest to this 1888 Stick-style residence.  Once the home of a founding family of Milan, the Hack House now attracts visitors interested in the architecture, furnishings, and decorative objects of the late Victorian period.  Four outbuildings (including a three-seat outhouse) and period gardens complete a pastoral picture of 19th-century life.  Tours of the Hack House Museum are scheduled on Fridays from 1-4 p.m. May through November.  See picture of house and map of location at

Of the many architectural styles prevalent in the United States during the Victorian era, the Stick Style (1860-1890) was the most expressive of a building’s underlying structure.  Decorative wood trim, called stick work, was applied to the exterior to emphasize the basic wood frame structure underneath.  Many fine examples of Stick Style may be hidden beneath slipcovers of aluminum, vinyl, stucco, or asbestos shingle installed in an attempt to modernize the appearance of an older home.  The Stick Style evolved from the work of architect Gervase Wheeler, an English immigrant and author of Rural Homes or, Sketches of Houses Suited to American Country Life, an influential treatise on residential architecture first published in 1851.  Over several years and eight editions, the book popularized Wheeler’s ideas on design, particularly his notion that buildings should be structurally truthful.  See also and

Egg Pancakes with Vegetables  by Shirley Chung   Makes 4 large pancakes  Eggy batter is loaded with shredded vegetables like scallions, carrots and zucchini--really anything you have on hand.  Serve a stack of these alongside a green salad or a bowl of rice for simple and quick midweek meal.  Find recipe at  See also Jun/ jeon/chun pancake-like Korean dishes at  They can be made from almost anything.  This includes meat, seafood, vegetables, and kimchi, and they are either coated with an egg, flour, or combination batter before they are pan-fried.  There are even sweet dessert or snack versions of jun.  Jun can be a side dish, snack, main dish, dessert, or anju (drinking snacks).  Issue 2052  February 27, 2019

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Loblolly was a porridge or stew, coming to mean swamp.  It is used in the names of:  Loblolly pine (Pinus taeda), a tree; Loblolly-bay (Gordonia lasianthus), a tree; Loblolly boy, an assistant to a ship's surgeon; and Loblolly Stable, a horse breeding and racing stable in Arkansas.

John Anthony Aniston (born Giannis Anitios Anastasakis 1933)  is an American actor.  He is best known for his role as Victor Kiriakis on the NBC daytime drama series Days of Our Lives, which he originated in July 1985 and has played continually since then.  He is the father of actress Jennifer Aniston.  Aniston was born on the island of Crete, Greece.  His father anglicized his name when he immigrated to the United States when Aniston was two, and his parents opened a restaurant in Chester, Pennsylvania.   He has appeared in soap operas regularly since 1969, when he first joined Days of Our Lives as a character named Eric Richards, which he played until 1970.  In 1975, he joined the cast of Love of Life as Eddie Aleata.  In November 1978, he left Love of Life and began playing Mary Stuart's new love interest, Martin Tourneur, on Search for Tomorrow in February 1979.  He played that role until April 1984.  He returned to the cast of Days of Our Lives a second time, this time as Victor Kiriakis, in July 1985, and continues to play the role.  He has been nominated for the 2017 Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series for his performance.

twi-  word-forming element meaning "two, twice, double, in two ways," from Old English twi- "two, in two ways, twice, double," from Proto-Germanic *twi- (source also of Old Frisian twi-, Old Norse tvi-, Dutch twee-, Old High German zwi-, German zwei-), from PIE *dwis (source also of Sanskrit dvi-, Greek di-, Old Latin dvi-, Latin bi-, Lithuanian dvi-), from root *dwo- "two."  Cognate with bi-. Older instances of it include Middle English twinter "two years old" (c. 1400, of cattle, sheep, etc.), reduced from Old English twi-wintre, and Old English twispræc "double or deceitful speech."  See also

Giuseppe Arcimboldo (1527-1593) was extremely famous during his lifetime, but he was soon forgotten after his death.  There was almost no mention of him in the 17th and 18th centuries, and it was not until 1885 that a treatise by Dr. Carlo Casati appeared called Giuseppe Arcimboldo, pittore milanese, in which he is mainly seen as a painter of portraits.  See pictures of The Librarian, The Lawyers, The Four Seasons and The Cook along with text and explanation of visual puns at

Absolute Best Liver and Onions  "This recipe will turn liver haters into converts.  Very simple!  The three things that will set your liver above all others are:  1) soak in milk, 2) turn liver as little as possible and 3) don't overcook.

For over the past century, wicker constituted the most common name for woven furniture in the United States, in all its various stylistic and material variations.  Scholars assert that the term wicker derived from two possible meanings:  old Swedish “vikker,” which meant willow, and the Swedish verb “wicka,” the verb “to bend.”  A general term, by the nineteenth century it began to refer to the material components of objects, practical or decorative, fabricated from woven plant or fiber materials.  In the twentieth century, wicker referred to the technique of weaving rather than the material itself.  The act of weaving objects from pliable materials, however, predated the nineteenth century by over a thousand years.  From the earliest times, humans wove plant fibers into functional crafts.  Woven furniture forms from the late nineteenth century to the 1920s, and Asian hourglass rattan, all referred to as “wicker” in decorating books and journal articles, experienced a revival in the second half of the twentieth century.  Wicker appeared ubiquitously in American life at the turn of the twentieth century, in locations as varied as parlors, porches, and railway cars.  After the Great Depression, wicker of all forms fell from fashion among many suburbanites, only to appear in luxury vacation areas.  The English photographer and decorator Cecil Beaton played a significant role in Americans’ exposure to antique forms of wicker. His work imitated his personal style, and he photographed many celebrities seated on a variety of his own antique wicker chairs during the 1950s.  The Development and Effects of the Twentieth-Century Wicker Revival by Emily A. Morris  submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Masters of Arts in the History of Decorative Arts The Smithsonian Associates and Corcoran College of Art and Design 2012   See over 60 illustrations from page 83 through page 142.

The Whitsunday Islands are a collection of continental islands of various sizes off the central coast of Queensland, Australia, approximately 900 kilometres (560 miles) north of Brisbane.  The northernmost of the islands are situated off the coast by the town of Bowen while the southernmost islands are off the coast by Proserpine.  The island group is centered on Whitsunday Island, while the group's commercial center is Hamilton Island.  The traditional owners of the area are the Ngaro people and the Gia people(Birri Gubba language group) whose Juru Clan has the only legally recognized native title in the region.  There is some contention as to exactly which islands are within the informally named Whitsunday Islands, in particular those at the southern extremity and the inclusions to the west.  What is certain is that they lie within the chain named Cumberland Isles by Captain Cook (now officially the Cumberland Islands) and a reasonably defined section of that chain and surrounding waters have become known worldwide as The Whitsundays, based on a contraction of the Whitsunday Islands designation.  See graphics at

The keto diet, more properly known as the ketogenic diet, was designed in the 1920s as a way to treat epilepsy.  It proved highly effective, especially with children, but fell out of favor as new anticonvulsant drugs came to market.  Then in 1994, Dateline ran a story about Charlie Abrahams, a toddler with severe epilepsy whose parents turned to the ketogenic diet in desperation.  It worked so well that Charlie was reportedly seizure-free (and drug-free) within a month.  In 1997, Charlie’s father, Hollywood producer Jim Abrahams, adapted their story into the TV movie First Do No Harm, starring Meryl Streep.  The saga of the Abrahams reignited interest in a ketogenic diet as a possible treatment for everything from migraines and sleep disorders to autism and Alzheimer's disease.  In more recent years, with growing interest in the similar Atkins diet, keto started being touted as a weight-loss strategy, too.  A ketogenic diet elevates the levels of ketone bodies in the system—these are the byproducts of the body breaking down fat for energy when carbohydrates are in short supply, a process called ketosis.  The average American gets most of their energy from glucose, which comes from carbs and sugars.  When you’re in ketosis, though, your body goes into hyper fat-burning mode, also using up stored body fat, which is why it’s effective as a weight-loss strategy.  Since many fruits and vegetables are rich in sugar and starches (both forms of carbohydrates), they are largely off the menu.  You can eat small portions of low-sugar berries as well as leafy greens, but the focus is largely on consuming fats.  Eve Watling

Have you ever had colcannon?  A St. Patrick’s day favorite, it’s a mixture of creamy mashed potatoes and usually kale or cabbage.  I first encountered colcannon potatoes while doing research on traditional Irish cooking.  Not surprisingly the Irish have all sorts of ways of cooking potatoes, with festive names like champ, bruisy, pandy, boxty, and this Irish potato recipe, colcannon.  prep time:  10 minutes  cook time:  25 minutes  serves 4 as a side dish  For a variation, sub out half of the potatoes with parsnips.  Can add chives, leeks, or bacon too.  Find recipe by Elise Bauer at  Issue 2051  February 26, 2019 

Monday, February 25, 2019

"I get the news I need from the weather report.  I can gather all the news I need from the weather report." The Only Living Boy in New York, composed and sung by Paul Simon in1969   Some get all the news they need from newspapers, sports stories, social media, news aggregations, blogs, other people, radio or TV. 

Feathers are some of the strongest and lightest structures formed of living tissue.  When fluffed up, they act as insulation.  When pressed tightly, they expel excess heat. * Birds of prey can store large amounts of food, and survive fine to seven days without eating. * Owls can hear sounds ten times faster than humans. * Birds of prey can scan the ground or water from hundreds, sometimes thousands of feet in the air, pinpointing their target with precision. * Falcons are the world's fastest animals. * Skyward, a novel by Mary Alice Monroe

Silhouettes of Birds of Prey in Flight

The word silhouette, in French and English, originally referred to cut-out profile portraits in black paper, resembling a shadow of the sitter.  Etienne de Silhouette was born in Limoges in 1709.  He was to rise to the rank of contrôleur général des finances at the court of King Louis by the age of fifty.  Attempting to get state finances into better shape, he advocated cutting spending, getting rid of loopholes that allowed rich state officials to avoid paying tax, and imposing a touch of austerity on the lavish spending of the royal court.  This last proposal in particular didn’t go down too well, and he was booted out of office, retiring from public life to live on his country estate for the rest of his days.  Silhouette’s attempted reforms led his enemies to call him a skinflint, and his name was soon associated with meanness and frugality.  Apparently, breeches without money-pockets were known as ‘culottes à la Silhouette’ at the time.  It’s been claimed that this is the reason Silhouette gave his name to the shadow-portraits, either because they were a ‘portrait-on-the-cheap’, or because they thinned people down to a shadow of themselves.  That may just be part of the general slander Silhouette suffered after his short-lived stint in control of the nation’s purse strings.  Other accounts suggest he was a genuine enthusiast for shadow-portraits, and would sit guests to his home in front of a blank canvas, before using a special lamp to project their shadow onto it for him to draw around.  Either way, whether he was an enthusiast for the craft or a victim of some very roundabout insult, it’s unlikely that Silhouette was the inventor of the technique.  For starters, shadow puppets have been in use in south-east Asia for at least a thousand years.  See also Silhouettes and Figure Ground Illusions at

Binocular Single Vision may be defined as the state of simultaneous vision, which is achieved by the coordinated use of both eyes, so that separate and slightly dissimilar images arising in each eye are appreciated as a single image by the process of fusion.  Thus binocular vision implies fusion, the blending of sight from the two eyes to form a single percept.

For my Easy Chicken Korma I give traditional whole spice substitutions, use almond butter instead of soaking and puréeing the nuts, and use chopped, boneless chicken.  The sauce is amazing and is perfect served over rice.  For those new to the term, Korma is an Indian dish consisting of meat or vegetables that are braised with yogurt or cream and spices to produce a thick sauce.  Kevin O'Leary   Find the easy recipe at  See also Chicken Korma recipe by Swasthi at

'Hither and yon' is an old English expression meaning 'here and there' or 'to and fro'.  There have been several alternative ways of expressing the phrase, depending on where and when the speaker lived.  'Hither' was first used in Old English in the 8th century, in the form 'hyder' or hider', which later morphed into 'hether' in the 17th century, 'hither' in the mid 1700s and finally 'here' today.  Francis Grose was the first to record 'hither' in its current spelling, in A provincial glossary:  with a collection of local proverbs, and popular superstitions, 1787, citing it to be colloquial northern English:  Hither and yon, here and there, backwards and forwards.  Grose was an indefatigable lexicographer and his glossary and other works are a boon to etymologists.  He was amongst the first to record numerous expressions that are now part of our language, including:  Yellow belly, Down in the dumps, Before you could say Jack Robinson, Old hat, and Peeping Tom.

Follow-up to French Prime Minister François Fillon declaring that the title mademoiselle (Miss) will no longer be included on any government forms or documents.  The story recounts an anniversary of the declaration on or about February 22, 2012.
Follow-up to Norwegian Lefse  Lefse is like something in the taco-crepe-nan sort of thing.  The good taste mostly comes from the spread used.  Kringla is a figure 8 dough (many) laid out on a baking tray.  One of its principle ingredients is buttermilk so it has that flavor.  Not flaky, not sweet.  Kumla is a Norwegan dumpling made with fine ground potato and flour (paste?).  The taste largely comes from the smoked ham hock broth that the Kumla are boiled in.  Lots of butter is used while eating them.
Follow-up to Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible having  five narrators.  Rashomon is a film version of a story told by different narrators at trial.  A classic!  See it today.  It will make you forever skeptical of "eyewitness" testimony.  Everyone puts a self-serving spin on what he "saw."  The same story is told in court by four individuals. Thank you, Muse readers!

Winners at the 91st Academy Awards included Alfonso Cuarón’s Netflix drama Roma, the Bradley Cooper-Lady Gaga musical A Star is Born and Green Book, which stars Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali.  The former led with 10 alongside Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Favourite, with Adam McKay’s political satire Vice following close behind with eight.  Jacob Stolworthy  Find complete list of winners at

Historically, the City of Angels has always been the city of dreams, the great majority revolving around the silver screen.  The motion picture industry was largely responsible for Los Angeles's founding, so it has always seemed odd that this industry town has never had a museum dedicated to cinema.  That is until now:  Under the creative eye of Renzo Piano, the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, devoted to both the art and science of moviemaking, is currently being built and is slated to open in late 2019.  The work of the Pritzker Prize winner, along with executive architect Gensler, will be housed in the 1939 May Company Building at the intersection of Wilshire and Fairfax, with renovation and expansion a part of the scheme.  When completed, the six-floor museum will encompass 300,000 square feet with permanent and temporary exhibition galleries, an education studio, and two theaters.  Its jewel in the crown is a spherical addition capped by a glass dome offering panoramic views of the Hollywood Hills.  Edie Cohen  Read more and see many pictures at  See also

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY  The pain passes but the beauty remains. - Pierre-Auguste Renoir, artist [responding to Matisse on why he painted in spite of his painful arthritis] (25 Feb 1841-1919)  Issue 2050  February 25, 2019 

Friday, February 22, 2019

Connection by OneRepublic   2:28  OneRepublic is an American alternative rock band from Colorado Springs, Colorado  The song and music video released for “Connection” talks about an important learning from the modern world.  The entire line “can I get a connection?” has a sarcastic undertone, as the modern world is entirely about networking.  Thank you, Muse reader! 

Binocular Single Vision may be defined as the state of simultaneous vision, which is achieved by the coordinated use of both eyes, so that separate and slightly dissimilar images arising in each eye are appreciated as a single image by the process of fusion.  Thus binocular vision implies fusion, the blending of sight from the two eyes to form a single percept. 

Cardinal vowels are a set of reference vowels used by phoneticians in describing the sounds of languages.  A cardinal vowel is a vowel sound produced when the tongue is in an extreme position, either front or back, high or low.  The current system was systematised by Daniel Jones in the early 20th century, though the idea goes back to earlier phoneticians, notably Ellis and Bell.  The vowel is produced with the tongue as far forward and as high in the mouth as is possible, with spread lips.  The vowel is produced with the tongue as far back and as high in the mouth as is possible, with protruded lips.  This sound can be approximated by adopting the posture to whistle a very low note, or to blow out a candle.  And is produced with the tongue as low and as far back in the mouth as possible.  The other vowels are 'auditorily equidistant' between these three 'corner vowels', at four degrees of aperture or 'height':  close, close-mid, open-mid, and open.  See also Vowels at

Barking Up a Tree:  Photography Exhibit   The name of the blolly (Guapira discolor) tree is hard to say without chuckling.  Regardless, the pattern of lichens on its bark is seriously beautiful.  Birds feed on the small, fleshy fruit of blolly and other native trees, helping to spread their seeds.  This is how many Caribbean tree species were introduced to south Florida.  Black ironwood (Krugiodendron ferreum) has the heaviest wood of any tree in the United States.  Weighing 89 pounds per cubic foot, it sinks in water.  Many of south Florida's native trees have extremely dense, tough wood, a possible adaptation to hurricane winds.  The hard, heavy, durable, red wood of the inkwood tree (Exothea paniculata) has been used for piles and boats because of its resistance to shipworm, a tiny saltwater clam that is notorious for boring into, and eventually destroying, wooden structures that are immersed in sea water.  Gumbo-limbo (Bursera simarouba) is one of south Florida's best known trees.  Its rapid growth and high tolerance for wind make it a desirable shade tree that thrives with minimal care in residential areas.  Closely related to poison oak, poison ivy, and poison sumac, poisonwood (Metopium toxiferum) contains the same toxic substance that can result in oozing, itchy welts if the sap is touched.  All of these plant species are members of the cashew or sumac family.  Florida's state tree, the sabal palm (Sabal palmetto) contains an edible heart that consists of the tree's young leaf bases.  Early pioneers went to great lengths to remove the heart, which they called swamp cabbage.  Read more and see pictures at

Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible is remarkable not just for its story but also for its narrative form.  It has five narrators.  Orleanna Price and her four daughters accompany her husband Nathan Price, a Baptist missionary, to the Congo in 1959.  The Price daughters and their mother narrate in contrapuntal alternation.  By turns they describe their lives in a remote Congolese village and the fortunes of Nathan's mission to convert the Congolese.  Telling a story in a sequence of monologues by different characters is a surprisingly old novelistic technique.  It was pioneered in the 19th century by Wilkie Collins in The  Moonstone, a crime mystery in which different characters spoke in turn as if giving evidence in a trial.  In the early 20th century it was associated with some of the pioneers of modernism--Virginia Woolf in The Waves or William Faulkner in As I Lay Dying.  John Mullan  Read more at

BRIGHT SIDE DISH  Steam carrot strips and beans separately, 4 minutes for carrots, 6 for the beans.  Heat cranberries and slivered almonds in 4 tablespoons of butter in a small pan, until butter is completely melted.  Drain  beans and carrots and put them in serving bowl.  Mix in cranberries and almonds.  Add 2 tablespoons of honey.  Thank you, Muse reader!

Au revoir, mademoiselle   French Prime Minister François Fillon declared that the title mademoiselle (Miss) will no longer be included on any government forms or documents.  The decision comes after months of campaigning by two French feminist groups, Osez le féminisme! (Dare To Be Feminist!) and Les Chiennes de garde (The Watchdogs), who argue that the term places an unfair emphasis on a woman's marital status.  Mademoiselle literally means "my young lady" (ma + demoiselle), just as madame comes from "my lady" and monsieur "my lord."  Monsieur has long been used to identify both single and married men, as the archaic male equivalent of mademoisellemon damoiseau, never became an honorific title.  Now madame will be used for all women, whether single or married, and is thus best translated as "Ms." instead of "Mrs."  The Prime Minister's order will also replace nom de jeune fille (maiden name) and nom patronymique (patronymic) with nom de famille (family name), and nomd'époux/nom d'épouse (married name) with nom d'usage (used name).  Like "Ms." and "Mr." in English, madame and monsieur are usually abbreviated and capitalized when preceding a name.  Note that there is no period after Mme, but there is one after M.  You can use madame and monsieur by themselves to address a person as "ma'am" or "sir".  Sign up for free weekly French lessons sent by email  at  François Charles Armand Fillon (born 4 March 1954) is a retired French politician who served as Prime Minister of France from 2007 to 2012 under President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Ah, Cajun Seasoning by Holly, a wine and cheese lover   It’s one of my all time favorite spice mixtures!  I love adding cajun seasoning to almost everything . . . from burgers and steaks, to chicken, shrimp, and even on top of popcorn!  Cajun spice or seasoning contains super flavorful components such as garlic powder, onion powder, seasoning salt and cayenne pepper.  prep time  3 minutes   keeps in airtight container up to six months

Opening in spring 2019, The Shed will be New York’s first multi-arts center designed to commission, produce, and present all types of performing arts, visual arts, and popular culture.  The program will be international, created with co-commissioning partners around the globe, and local, with early-career artists in residence in The Shed’s free creative lab.  Located on the west side of Manhattan where the High Line meets Hudson Yards, the unique and flexible building can physically transform to support artists’ visions and the work they create—from hip hop to classical music, visual art to literature, film to theater and dance—with collaborations across these disciplines and beyond, welcoming the broadest range of art forms and audiences, all under one roof.  The Shed will be adjacent to 15 Hudson Yards and border the Public Square and Gardens.  The Shed’s most notable design feature is a telescoping outer shell that deploys over the plaza adjoining the building to provide a 120-foot-high, temperature-controlled hall.  As the building expands and contracts, it can work in many configurations, welcoming multiple events simultaneously.  When the shell is nested over the fixed building, the 17,000-square-foot plaza will be open public space that can be used for outside programming.  The new independent institution will be housed in an innovative 200,000-square-foot building designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro in collaboration with Rockwell Group.  Link to video at  Issue 2049  February 22, 2019