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Monthly Archives: March 2009

Einstein Quotes

"The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax."
 
"A person starts to live when he can live outside himself."
 
"Sometimes one pays most for the things one gets for nothing."
 
"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
 
"Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love."
 
"Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen."
 
"Peace cannot be kept by force. It can only be achieved by understanding."
 
"We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them."
 

"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler."

"Anyone who doesn’t take truth seriously in small matters cannot be trusted in large ones either."

 
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Posted by on March 25, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

Wipe Out the 10 Worst Germ Hot Spots

Um this is for those who suffer allergies too! (But I won’t mention any names)… Wink 

You may scrub your toilet and countertops until they shine, but when it comes to the war between you and germs, consider yourself outnumbered. Germs (the catch-all name for bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms) are everywhere—at home, in the office, even in your car. Luckily, about 99 percent of them can’t harm us. But the other 1 percent can be annoying, uncomfortable, or downright scary: Most of these pathogens are either viral or bacterial and can cause everything from a runny nose to a potentially life-threatening infection.

You may think you know the obvious places that germs propagate—the doctor’s office, the soles of your shoes—but many more germ-friendly locales are completely unexpected yet no less dangerous. We uncovered a host of surprising new spots where germs like to lurk, and offer easy solutions to keep you and your family safe and healthy.

Hot spot: The kitchen faucet

That metal aeration screen at the end of your kitchen faucet reduces water flow, which is good for the environment, but not so much for your health: Running water keeps the screen moist, an ideal condition for bacteria growth. Because tap water is far from sterile, if you accidentally touch the screen with dirty fingers or food, bacteria can grow on the faucet, explains microbiologist Kelly Reynolds, Ph.D., an associate professor of community environment and policy at the University of Arizona College of Public Health. Over time, bacteria build up and form a wall of pathogens called biofilm that sticks to the screen. "Eventually, that biofilm may even be big enough to break off and get onto your food or dishes," she notes.

Keep it clean: Once a week, remove the screen and soak it in a diluted bleach solution—follow the directions on the bottle’s label. Replace the screen, and let the water run a few minutes before using.

Hot spot: The garbage disposal

That raw chicken or spinach you’re rinsing for dinner is often loaded with harmful bacteria, which can make the young, the elderly, or anyone with a compromised immune system seriously ill. In fact, there are often more than 500,000 bacteria in the kitchen sink—about 1,000 times more than the average toilet has. Although the metal part of the disposal produces ions that can help kill germs, they still love to grow on the crevices in and around the slimy rubber stopper. That means your disposal can become party central for bacteria, contaminating whatever touches it—dishes, utensils, even your hands.

Keep it clean: At least once a week, clean the disposal’s rubber stopper with a diluted bleach solution—soap and water aren’t enough.

Hot spot: The welcome mat

It serves to greet not only your guests but also all the bugs on the bottoms of their shoes. One study found that nearly 96 percent of shoe soles had traces of coliform, which includes fecal bacteria. "The area near your front door is one of the dirtiest in the house," says Reynolds. Once bacteria plant their stakes in your mat, anytime you walk on it, you give them a free ride into your home.

Keep it clean: Spray the doormat once a week with a fabric-safe disinfectant (such as Lysol Disinfectant Spray). Leave shoes at the door, and avoid resting bags and groceries on the mat, too.

(Ewu! Dead Bugs!)

Hot spot: Your vacuum cleaner

"Vacuums—including the brushes and bags—are like meals-on-wheels for bacteria," says Charles Gerba, Ph.D., professor of environmental biology at the University of Arizona. "You suck in all this bacteria and food, creating an atmosphere for growth." A recent study by Gerba and his team found that 13 percent of all vacuum cleaner brushes tested positive for E. coli, which means you could spread it around the house each time you use the appliance.

Keep it clean: Change your vacuum bag frequently, and do so outdoors to avoid the cloud of bacteria that filters into the air. (Vacuum bags that feature antibacterial linings are best, and are available for many major brands.) Clean the cavity of a bagless vacuum with diluted bleach and let it air-dry.

Hot spot: A dish towel

You know a sponge can harbor nasty germs, but a recent study of hundreds of homes across the United States found that about 7 percent of kitchen towels were contaminated with MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), the difficult-to-treat staph bacteria that can cause life-threatening skin infections. Dish towels also rated tops for dangerous strains of E. coli and other bacteria. We often use towels to wipe up spills, says Reynolds, then reuse before washing them, which spreads germs.

(I try to change them DAILY…the one in the bathroom especially!)

Keep it clean: Stick to paper towels to clean countertops, and save the dishrag to dry just-washed pots and plates. Change towels or launder at least twice a week in hot water and bleach.

Those sanitizing wipes are my FRIEND! They make me feel sane after I use them…knowing the germs are DYING! (I call them "Sanity Wipes") Open-mouthed

Hot spot: Your car’s dashboard (Don’t forget the steering wheel!)

In tests of 100 vehicles from across the United States, the dashboard was found to be the second-most-common spot for bacteria and mold. (Food spills were number one.) The researchers’ rationale: When air—which carries mold spores and bacteria—gets sucked in through the vents, it’s often drawn to the dashboard, where it can deposit the spores and germs. Because the dashboard receives the most sun and tends to stay warm, it’s prime for growth.

Keep it clean: Regularly swipe the inside of your car with disinfecting wipes. Be more vigilant during allergy season—about 20 million Americans are affected by asthma, which is caused in part by an allergic reaction to mold.

Hot spot: Soap dispensers

Soap that harbors bacteria may sound ironic, but one recent study found that about 25 percent of liquid soap dispensers in public restrooms were contaminated by fecal bacteria. "Most of these containers are never cleaned, so bacteria grows as the soap scum builds up," says Gerba. "And the bottoms are touched by dirty hands, so there’s a continuous culture going on feeding millions of bacteria."

Keep it clean: Be sure to scrub hands thoroughly for 15 to 20 seconds with plenty of hot water—and if you have an alcohol gel disinfectant, use that, too.

Hot spot: Restaurant ketchup bottle

It’s the rare eatery that regularly bleaches down condiment containers. And the reality is that many people don’t wash their hands before eating, says Reynolds. So while you may be diligent, the guy who poured the ketchup before you may not have been, which means his germs are now on your fries.

Keep it clean: Squirt hand sanitizer on the outside of the bottle or use a disinfectant wipe before you grab it. Holding the bottle with a napkin won’t help—they’re porous, so microorganisms can seep right through, says Reynolds.

Hot spot: The refrigerator seal

A University of Arizona survey of 160 homes in three U.S. cities found that the seal around the fridge tested positive 83 percent of the time for common molds. The mold can spread every time the refrigerator door opens—exposing anyone who’s susceptible to allergies, and potentially contaminating the food.

Keep it clean: Wipe fridge seals at least once a week with a diluted bleach solution or disinfectant.

Hot spot: Your cell phone

You probably put it down any place that’s convenient, but consider this: Several studies on cell phones and PDAs found that they carry tons of bacteria, including staph (which can cause skin infections), pseudomonas (eye infections), and salmonella (stomach ailments). Many electronic devices are sheathed in leather or vinyl cases, which provide plenty of creases and crevices for germs to hide.

Keep it clean: Use a disinfecting wipe a few times a week, and be conscious of where you rest personal items.

(Um yeah, I do sanitize my phone weekly! and my keyboard and mouse…)

 
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Posted by on March 6, 2009 in Uncategorized

 

Running of the Reindeer!

When you have 6 months (or more) of winter it starts to effect your brain a little…
so in Feburary there is Fur Rondy a festival where Anchorage litteraly does the dumbest things in public and it’s allowed…
Here’s one of them.
Associated Press:
From sausages to stews, reindeer are usually a main dish in Alaska.

But the antlered animals were the main event at Anchorage’s first annual running of the reindeer.

A cheering crowd of hundreds lined snow-packed Fourth Avenue on Sunday to watch what was touted as Alaska’s version of Spain’s famed running of the bulls.

"Normally we just eat them," said Mark Berg, a spectator who has lived in Alaska since 1967. "I just made some jambalaya the other day out of reindeer sausage. I’ve eaten more of their cousins than they want to know."

Seven little reindeer, looking a bit bewildered, stood next to their handlers as a crowd of roughly 1,000 costumed runners chatted excitedly at the start.

The reindeer were lined up behind the first heat of runners — several hundred women in costume. One had taped a paper bulls-eye to her back. Others masqueraded as carrots and lichen, both favorite foods of reindeer.

At the signal to go, the reindeer stampeded into the crowd. Passing tourist shops, the downtown federal building and a stand selling reindeer hotdogs, the animals were well out in front by the halfway point.

"We thought, ‘OK, they’re just going to mosey along,’ but they took off running," said Amanda Pelkola, who dressed as a carrot with a friend. "We got smoked by the reindeer."

This was last year, this year the reindeer were running from the people again…next year, "The Running of the Moose!" Now that’s something to run from!

 
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Posted by on March 2, 2009 in Uncategorized

 
 
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