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Carol the Dabbler

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Everything posted by Carol the Dabbler

  1. It might. And turning off the "bedtime" setting might also help. But I'm wanting to relax, so I'd rather not stress my eyes. I'm currently alternating between two color puzzles, a word puzzle, and good ol' solitaire -- so if I get too frustrated with one, I just switch.
  2. Still trying to get rid of last year's stock, you mean? No idea. Just being FOR sale at this time of year is weird enough!
  3. I've been road-testing color-match puzzles, and am a bit frustrated. They all seem to be the same game, give or take a few minor details, and I enjoy the basic concept. But why do several of the colors have to be so similar? If I concentrate, I can tell the reddish-orange from the orangey-red, and the slightly-darker gray from the slightly-paler gray -- though the extra effort detracts from the fun. But every time I think I've figured out which pieces are bluish-green and which are greenish-blue, it turns out I'm wrong, which wreaks havoc with my attempts at strategy. I wish they'd use basic colors (like a medium-small box of crayons) and forget the three-dimensional look (which, though attractive, introduces confusing streaks of other colors). Admittedly my eyes aren't quite what they used to be, but why do ALL of the color-matching games seem to be designed for people with top-notch vision? If anyone knows of one that isn't, please tell me!
  4. Alex just saw a TV ad for artificial Christmas trees. On July 13th. Five months and 12 days before Christmas.
  5. Caya, that was utterly delightful! Added: Not sure a cat could actually take a raven, but am willing to suspend my disbelief.
  6. Nicely done, Mr. de Lancie! That poem (or the mere thought of it) never fails to remind me of a parody from Mad magazine, my original copy of which was burned by my mother decades ago. Each time I think of that parody, I go looking for it -- and just now I finally found it (on this web page, though it seems to have become a "thing," available on several websites now): The Spaniel" by Edgar, Al, & Moe (From Mad Magazine) "Once upon a midnight cautious, while I pondered, weak and nauseous, Over some advertising copy I had wrote for Macy's store - While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a yapping, As of someone loudly yapping, yapping at my office door. 'Tis some client there,' I muttered,'yapping at my office door - only this and nothing more.' Then I felt my terror worsen, for my guest was not a person! In there stepped a cocker spaniel, naturally I jumped in fear. Tried to climb an oaken panel, ripping there my new grey flannel, But the spaniel merely stood there, speaking out with voice so clear - Speaking out like Jack Lescoulie, in a voice both loud and clear - Quoth the spaniel - 'Drink Blatz Beer!' How I marveled this ungainly dog who did commercials plainly; How he spoke the message clearly; selling points he underscored. For I could not help agreeing that no living human being Ever yet could mouth a slogan without sounding Slightly bored - Most announcers being human, can't help sounding slightly bored - Quoth the spaniel, 'Buy a Ford!' Thus this dog with voice like Murrow made my heavy brow unfurl; Thoughts of fortunes I could make now made me shake down to my knees. But the spaniel set me grieving then by turning tail and leaving. Naturally, I begged him tarry, crying out, 'Stay with me, please!' Chasing him along the hallway, crying out, 'Stay with me, please!' Quoth the spaniel, 'Eat Kraft Cheese!'" For those too young (or too not-American) to recall, Jack Lescoulie was a popular announcer and host, and Edward R. Murrow was a prominent newscaster. I think I just "got" the last line.
  7. We happened to be watching an episode of The Monkees on a rerun channel. Because the show is about a musical group (basically a parody of the Beatles), there's a lot of music, and one of the songs had a familiar tune, which is likely to get stuck in my head because I'm trying to remember what other song I remember the tune from. All I've recalled so far is that it rhymes "pink and pleasant" with "phosphorescent." Probably not one of my favorite songs! Oh, hang on a minute -- it's "Plastic Jesus." Whew! Everybody seemed to have slightly different lyrics for that song.
  8. That picture benefits greatly from clicking-to-enlarge!
  9. I thought each mosquito bit only once -- guess I was wrong! Or else you managed to shoo her away each time before she'd drunk her fill. Here are some reasons why mosquitos prefer some people over others (from health/medical/scientific sites online): * They prefer type O blood over B, and B over A (though this may vary by species of mosquito), but in any case: * They prefer people whose blood type is revealed by a substance secreted into their sweat * The more carbon dioxide a person exhales, the more easily a mosquito can find them * They are attracted to hot and/or sweaty people (and some people's sweat attracts them more than other's) * They are attracted to dark clothing colors, especially black, so pastels and white are safest * They're attracted to people who've recently drunk beer.
  10. Thanks for the info, but the link takes me only to a sign-up page. I have heard MF doing DJ duty, though, and he's good even when he's filling in for someone at the last minute with no time to prepare. Lemme see if I can find that -- OK, I think this is what I've listened to. It's just audio, so I'll put a regular link, here. That's him and Amanda Abbington filling in for Stephen Merchant, ten years ago.
  11. Rubbing your rash with crushed jewelweed might be a bit sticky, yeah. I've never tried it. I've never noticed any stickiness from either the homemade juice or the lotion I bought at the health-food store, though. It doesn't entirely stop my itches (which may be why you weren't impressed), but it does makes them considerably more bearable. My worst bites apparently come from chiggers, a type of mites which are, I believe, a uniquely American pest. They can't fly, they just crawl in search of protected areas, so my husband has found that applying tea-tree oil to his ankles before mowing the grass cuts way down on the number that make it any further. So I've recently started applying it to my forearms before doing any heavy weeding, and it does seem to help. I still get a few bites, but jewelweed makes those bearable. I don't seem to be as attractive to mosquitos as some people, but they do bite me. As for gnats, we're sometimes mobbed by them, but I'm not sure whether they bite or not. Maybe I've been blaming their effects on mosquitos? Oh, and there's the occasional flea bite -- those are pretty distinctive. Good ol' summertime!
  12. I guess that's good news in a way. As we've all noticed, brand-new plastic can be pretty stinky at first, releasing large amounts of volatile substances into the air, but this outgassing decreases quickly. Apparently the slow-down continues, to the point where the remaining plastic is virtually inert, and therefore fairly harmless.
  13. In that case you'll be glad to know he wasn't like that in The Duck Factory. At least I recall him as being perky rather than umm, Carrey-ish -- so apparently he was more restrained. (I like some of his more recent stuff too, but I'd probably enjoy it more if he dialed it back a bit!) Added: I went looking on YouTube to see if they had any samples -- and the entire series seems to have been posted by several different people. Just type Duck Factory into the YouTube search bar.
  14. Sounds like the same two kinds we have around here, in about the same ratio. One flower? They're supposed to be medicinal, not magical. As I understand it, the potency is in the juice, so you need to crush enough of the plant to either create a juicy poultice or actually squeeze out a bit of juice. In either case, rub it on the rash. The lotion (which is the way I've mostly used jewelweed) is simply the juice preserved with alcohol. (I've heard that freezing the straight juice also works well.) Interesting that isopropyl alcohol seems to work for you approximately as well as jewelweed salve works for me. If the alcohol and the jewelweed are each effective alone, then it's no wonder the combination (jewelweed lotion) also works.
  15. OK, so you're already familiar with the plant. Do you happen to recall what color its flowers were? I didn't realize till just the other day that two different types of alcohol are sold at drugstores. One is typically labeled "Isopropyl Alcohol" but is often referred to as rubbing alcohol even though the description on my bottle says it's mainly intended as a disinfectant (e.g., the stuff they rub on your arm before an injection). The other is actually labeled "Rubbing Alcohol," intended for use in massages; its active ingredient is ethyl alcohol, aka ethanol, aka grain alcohol, aka booze -- though the label on my bottle (70% ethyl alcohol) says FOR EXTERNAL USE ONLY, so the other 30% apparently includes a "denaturing" (i.e., poisonous and/or nasty-tasting) substance. So which kind are you talking about? The brand of jewelweed lotion that we use contains isopropyl alcohol (as a preservative), but the salve that we bought recently is only jewelweed, olive oil, and beeswax. And they both work for me -- the itching doesn't entirely go away, but calms down to a tolerable level for 12-24 hours, at which point I need another dose. Each seems to work best if I "rub it in" well -- so maybe it's actually the rubbing (not to be confused with scratching!) that does the trick? I don't blame you for avoiding the hydrocortisone! But it might be a good idea to have a dermatologist look at your rash, especially since you're getting it more often as the years go by. The dermatologists I've encountered have definitely put more thought into such things than my GPs have. Well, at least we're talking about poison ivy, and the topic is a poison snake. Hopefully we'll get more comments on the original topic, though!
  16. As I recall, the credits at the end of the show listed maybe four or five voice people. Lemme go check. OK, according to IMDb, Paul Frees did Boris Badenov and Inspector Fenwick. As he demonstrated in that video, Bill Scott did both Bullwinkle Moose and Mr. Peabody. June Foray did Rocket J. Squirrel, Natasha Fatale, and Nell Fenwick. Sherman (Mr. Peabody's boy) was voiced by Walter Tetley. Snidely Whiplash was voiced by Hans Conried. Most of them also did a bunch of miscellaneous voices, and a bunch of other people did still more voices. Did you ever see a short-lived (13 episode) sitcom from 1984 called The Duck Factory? My brother and I loved that show, partly because the actors included Don Messick (who we'd previously known only as voice credits on Yogi Bear and The Flintstones) and Jay Tarses (whose name was familiar from a variety of behind-the-camera credits). June Foray had a cameo in one episode. Oh, and the young guy who played the lead was pretty good, fella named Jim something, here it is, Jim Carrey. Would love to get that on DVD (It does seem to be available as used VHS cassettes, for $70-something.)
  17. For my fellow Rocky & Bullwinkle fans, here's a video of June Foray and Bill Scott doing those voices on-camera: I just love that kinda stuff! (Here's a link to some related videos: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=rocky+and+bullwinkle+voice+actors ) Came across that video while looking up info on real-life flying squirrels. Turns out, even though I don't believe I've ever seen one, they do live around here. In fact, counting all three North-American species, they pretty much cover the entire continent. And if you shine an ultraviolet ("black") light on them at night, they all fluoresce pink! There's also a Eurasian species, but I have no idea whether it fluoresces.
  18. What were the results? Did it clear up the rash or did it dissolve his skin away, rash and all? Don't knock it till someone else has tried it, I always say! I grew up in the country, not poor, but working-class. We used what I now assume was calamine lotion, but I don't recall it doing much for the itch. The best thing I've ever found for poison ivy rash, bug bites, etc., is jewelweed lotion or salve, or just the fresh juice. It's made from what's called "touch me not" around here (because when the seed capsules are ripe, they'll explode if touched, thus spreading the seeds far and wide). It consists of a few species from the Impatiens genus, so the ornamental Impatiens species may (or may not!) have a similar medicinal value. Here is the most common wild species, Impatiens capensis: Too bad I didn't know about the plant's itch-relieving properties when I was a kid -- there was a lot of it growing down along our creek!
  19. Or it could have been poison-oak rash. The plants look so similar that I knew what poison oak was the very first time I saw it -- the tips of its leaves are rounded whereas poison ivy leaves are pointed, but otherwise they look pretty much identical. And their allergenic substance is identical. My father was like your brother, but my mother was immune to the stuff. She would pull up ivy plants with her bare hands, to help Daddy avoid getting the rash. Then one day she got a little patch of rash on her hand.... "Poison" ivy isn't actually poison, it's merely a very common allergen. The first time anyone encounters any potential allergen, they don't react. It may, as with Mom, take years of repeated exposure to provoke an allergic response. But once they do develop an allergy, it's likely to become worse with repeated exposure. So don't get too cocky!
  20. If it's on YouTube, just copy and paste the page's url. The forum software knows what to do from there.
  21. Yes, please do keep us posted! Your milk jug is presumably #2 plastic (high-density polyethylene), but the clear jug is more likely #1 (Polyethylene terephthalate -- yeah, I had to look that up!). My money would be on the #1 to last longer, but unfortunately I don't recall ever buying anything in a gallon-size #1. Number 5 plastic (polypropylene) is also very durable, but that's mostly yogurt tubs.
  22. It turns out that Columbo wasn't entirely right about that, either. The Eastern species doesn't occur west of the Rockies, but there's a species called Western poison ivy (which I never encountered, and so just found out about). I don't see how the rash could be any different at all, since the allergenic substance is precisely the same. Yes, it's a wonder the stories turned out to be so memorable anyway. Just imagine how good they'd have been if he'd really been trying!
  23. I learned something else in the process of filling those jugs of emergency water: Ordinary one-gallon plastic jugs (such as milk is sold in) do not age gracefully no matter how carefully you store them. I had washed some empty milk jugs about five years ago and stored them in our basement, thinking they'd remain usable indefinitely. (I knew better than to store them in the attic, where it gets hot.) But as I was filling some with water a few weeks ago, I was surprised to see that several had pinhole leaks. In the process of finding a dozen usable jugs, I rejected seven, and as I was squashing the leaky jugs flat for the recycling bin, a few of them actually shattered! If I had saved all the one-gallon plastic vinegar jugs that I've emptied and discarded since they stopped using glass, I might have a dozen, and their nice thick plastic might remain usable indefinitely. But how much vinegar can a person use? I am now in the process of accumulating a dozen new milk jugs -- which I will need to replace every couple of years. Nothing lasts forever. *sigh*
  24. I've only seen those numbers from companies, but that doesn't necessarily mean they aren't available to individuals. Judging by my examples and yours, it may be that the five-digit ones are for outgoing texts and the six-digit ones are for incoming. The latter may be something like In-WATTS (i.e., toll free) phone numbers, which cost a lot more than a regular number. Most people would have very little use for them, so they'd see no reason to fork over that much dough.
  25. They hung around for a few days, and presumably saw my response, but did not reply to it -- maybe because I told my own reactions to the story, rather than actually replying to their post? That truly is odd! Of course a lot of people aren't much into natural phenomena. In one episode of Columbo (normally a top-notch detective series), he solves the case because he somehow recognizes a suspect's rash as specifically poison ivy rash, and because he knows that poison ivy doesn't grow in California, meaning that the suspect had been out of the state recently. Fine and dandy -- except that a] poison-ivy rash (with which I am all too familiar) looks to me like a pretty typical contact-dermatitis rash, and b] the allergen in poison ivy is exactly the same substance as the allergen in poison oak, which does grow in California. So I'm guessing whoever wrote that episode wasn't real up on natural stuff! Maybe ACD himself fell into that category -- someone who comes across an intriguing fact and over-interprets it? Or maybe he was facing a deadline?
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