Fun Stuff

Don Marquis

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 6:00pm
"The chief obstacle to the progress of the human race is the human race."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Dick Gregory

Quotes of the Day - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 6:00pm
"I never believed in Santa Claus because I knew no white dude would come into my neighborhood after dark."
Categories: Fun Stuff

whammy

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Thu, 02/19/2015 - 12:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for February 19, 2015 is:

whammy • \WAM-ee\  • noun
1 a : a supernatural power bringing bad luck b : a magic curse or spell : jinx, hex 2 : a potent force or attack; specifically : a paralyzing or lethal blow

Examples:
After making three errors in one inning, Mitch became convinced that someone had put the whammy on his glove.

"Finally, Finland is dealing with the double whammy of a loss of trade with Russia—after the European Union imposed Ukraine-related sanctions—and the decline of its golden goose, Nokia." — Michael Booth, Washington Post, January 18, 2015

Did you know?
The origin of whammy is not entirely certain, but it is assumed to have been created by combining wham ("a solid blow") with the whimsical -y ending. The first example of whammy in print occurred in 1940, but the word was popularized in the 1950s by the cartoonist Al Capp in the comic strip Li'l Abner. The character Evil-Eye Fleegle could paralyze someone with the sheer power of his gaze. The "single whammy" was a look with one eye, and the fearsome "double whammy" used both eyes. As you may know, "double whammy" has also found a place in English as a general term. It means "a combination of two adverse forces, circumstances, or effects"—in other words, a one-two punch.

Categories: Fun Stuff

February 19, 1847: Donner Party rescued

This Day in History - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1847, the first rescuers reach surviving members of the Donner Party, a group of California-bound emigrants stranded by snow in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.

In the summer of 1846, in the midst of a Western-bound fever sweeping the United States, 89 people--including 31 members of the Donner and Reed families--set out in a wagon train from Springfield, Illinois. After arriving at Fort Bridger, Wyoming, the emigrants decided to avoid the usual route and try a new trail recently blazed by California promoter Lansford Hastings, the so-called "Hastings Cutoff." After electing George Donner as their captain, the party departed Fort Bridger in mid-July.  The shortcut was nothing of the sort: It set the Donner Party back nearly three weeks and cost them much-needed supplies. After suffering great hardships in the Wasatch Mountains, the Great Salt Lake Desert and along the Humboldt River, they finally reached the Sierra Nevada Mountains in early October. Despite the lateness of the season, the emigrants continued to press on, and on October 28 they camped at Truckee Lake, located in the high mountains 21 kilometers northwest of Lake Tahoe. Overnight, an early winter storm blanketed the ground with snow, blocking the mountain pass and trapping the Donner Party.

Most of the group stayed near the lake--now known as Donner Lake--while the Donner family and others made camp six miles away at Alder Creek. Building makeshift tents out of their wagons and killing their oxen for food, they hoped for a thaw that never came. Fifteen of the stronger emigrants, later known as the Forlorn Hope, set out west on snowshoes for Sutter's Fort near San Francisco on December 16. Three weeks later, after harsh weather and lack of supplies killed several of the expedition and forced the others to resort to cannibalism, seven survivors reached a Native American village.

News of the stranded Donner Party traveled fast to Sutter's Fort, and a rescue party set out on January 31. Arriving at Donner Lake 20 days later, they found the camp completely snowbound and the surviving emigrants delirious with relief at their arrival. Rescuers fed the starving group as well as they could and then began evacuating them. Three more rescue parties arrived to help, but the return to Sutter's Fort proved equally harrowing, and the last survivors didn't reach safety until late April. Of the 89 original members of the Donner Party, only 45 reached California.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - February 18

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 7:31pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

You have two ropes.

Each takes exactly 60 minutes to burn.

They are made of different material so even though they take the same amount of time to burn, they burn at separate rates.

In addition, each rope burns inconsistently.

How do you measure out exactly 45 minutes?

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - February 18 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 7:31pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - February 18

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 7:31pm
BrainBashers Daily Game

Magnetism
   Drop the ball into the pot under the guidance of the magnets.
[Played on the BrainBashers Games website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Garrison Keillor

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 6:00pm
"They say such nice things about people at their funerals that it makes me sad to realize that I'm going to miss mine by just a few days."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Douglas Adams

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 6:00pm
"Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind- bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Franklin D. Roosevelt

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 6:00pm
"It is fun to be in the same decade with you."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Grabel's Law

Quotes of the Day - Wed, 02/18/2015 - 6:00pm
"2 is not equal to 3, not even for large values of 2."
Categories: Fun Stuff