June 2019

1980s Cola Wars

It makes sense that companies like Pepsi and Coke would have wars between them for drink dominance, but anyone who wasn't a teen or older in the 80s might not know that the two companies had an epic battle during that decade to establish who was the better drink. Between the Pepsi Challenge, various marketing and naming campaigns and diet drink offerings, the two were neck and neck as America's top drink choice.

Pee Is Not For Drinking

Our bodies have excretory systems for a reason: they get rid of wastes we're not supposed to have in our bodies. That's why we get rid of urine. We certainly aren't meant to drink it; we are not rabbits who consume their own excrement, after all. People in Colorado who attend the Urine Therapy Meetup think that consuming urine and rubbing it on one's skin has health benefits, which is ludicrous. 

Slurping Up The Sunscreen

We always say that we can assess an environment by checking out the local frogs, since everything permeates their skin so easily. They're like living environmental barometers. But we shouldn't sell ourselves short, because as it turns out, so are we. Years ago I read about a mother who attempted to keep her child free of any kinds of toxic chemicals by avoiding everything possible, keeping to an organic lifestyle, etc. only to find out that when his blood was tested, it still registered a bunch of fire retardants and other substances that horrified her.

Who Is The Most Annoying Character?

There's often a fine line between what's annoying and what's funny when it comes to Family Guy, right? Some characters are just annoying all of the time, and while they deliver a few laughs, you can't help but wince when they're on the screen. Others are often annoying in various ways that get on our nerves, but not enough to where we don't want to watch the show anymore.

Beluga Returns Woman's Phone

This week I read two incredible animal stories that I have to share! The first is about a beluga whale who returned a woman's phone to her when she dropped it in the sea. This story really touches my heart and makes me feel so many conflicted emotions because as a teenager, one of the most moving experiences I ever had was seeing a beluga up close. A mere panel of glass separated us and I was in awe.

Origami Hearts

Sure, origami hearts are great for Valentine's Day, but what better month to make and share hearts than Pride Month? Anytime is a great time to make hearts to share with the people you care about (or even people who could use something uplifting), so this tutorial is a great place to start to make an easy origami heart. I've found a great place to leave things like this is at the unemployment office, but feel free to make and share them with whomever you like!

South Holland's Beautiful Keukenhof

Have you ever heard of the Keukenhof? It's an incredible garden in South Holland where seven million flowes bloom each spring, creaing a river of color that has to be seen to be believed. It's 79 acres of colorful beauty that attracts visitors every year. While Holland is known for its tulips, there are all kinds of other colorful blooms on display as well.

Your Favorite Family Games

Now that summer is here, maybe you're babysitting, subbing at summer school, or you have your own kids at home. No matter how young people are showing up in your life, playing games with them is usually a good idea. It's fun, it's both a learning and bonding experience and it helps to pass the time if it's too hot or rainy (and where I live, it's often one of those two things lately!).

Frogs' Brains May Be More Complex

Up until now, we've always assumed that only mammals and birds utilize mental mapping, placing us at the highest order of thought within the animal kingdom. It's an idea that reinforces how much we "deserve" to be at the top of the food chain, especially to those of us who eat meat, pollute (who doesn't do that?) and understand what we've done to this poor planet. Every day more insight into various species unveils how wrong we are about so many things, and the limitations we perceive regarding animal thought processes continue to crack on a daily basis as new research emerges. 

Whale Songs

The fact that over 80% of our own ocean remains unexplored is unbelievable to me, and scientists tell us that most of the acoustics picked up in the ocean aren't even identified! We literally have an alien planet right amidst our own, and there could be anything lurking in the waters. How many creatures have we yet to discover? The giant squid alone is able to remain elusive from humans, so imagine what other life could be sharing the planet with us!