Fun Facts

Clarence Darrow

There is more to Clarence Darrow than I thought. As the old story goes, the famous litigator slyly distracted juries with his cigar. He supposedly threaded a thin wire through the cigar to keep the burning ashes from falling. Enthralled juries would watch the ashes with anticipation instead of listening to the opposing counsel. True or not, the story has…

What is swag?

The origin of the word “swag” is appropriate since we are now in Mardi Gras season. Swag, as a bag to haul stuff around in, has been used for half a century in one form or another.  The version we use today – the free crap you get from car dealers, trade shows, and Mardi Gras floats – first appeared…

The End of an Era – Deaths This Year

With the recent deaths of many of my childhood icons — Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson, Walter Cronkite, Ed McMahon, John Hughes, Bea Arthur – I got to thinking about the famous people who died this year. Growing up, we watched the Oscars segment honoring those who the industry lost during the year. It seems like there’s more celebrity deaths this…

What Does 30 Mean in Journalism?

In The Advocate online the morning, one of the editorials ended with a -30-. That’s unusual. Usually, the -30- gets edited out before the article goes to press or gets loaded up online. It made me nostalgic for my journalism days. I don’t recall if my journalism teachers ever said exactly why you’re supposed to end an article with -30-.…

Cats and Sweets

Randomly, I wondered whether or not cats can taste sweet things. According to this link, they cannot. Apparently, they lack the gene and the taste receptors, whatever that means. Actually, my wondering wasn’t so random. My cat keeps trying to get my grapes, but when I finally offer them to her, she turns her nose up at them. I suspect…

Ix’Chel

I ran into someone today online who goes by the handle Ixchel. Ixchel is the Mayan moon goddess, which I have tattooed on my left forearm. But for some reason, this person didn’t know about the name, so I did a quick Google search and found a neat Wikipedia entry on it.