Life by chocolate

When I was a little girl, chocolate bars were always a special treat I got when I behaved myself. So anytime I got good grades or helped with the chores, my mom would break two little squares out of the chocolate bar in the fridge and hand them to me. Sometimes, for lesser achievements, one square, but never more than two.

The chocolate commercials on television alwaysChocolate had people running carefree through the fields, biting into the chocolate bars as if there were no squares marking out how much you could eat! Having been raised on the ‘two squares a day’ rule, that always shocked me a little.. and made me jealous. Oh, how I longed for the day when I had the freedom to buy my own bar of chocolate and bite into it at will!

However, as I grew up, I was being told repeatedly by my dentist, dermatologist and others that chocolate wasn’t good for me, and every time I had a bite, I’d feel guilty. Turns out, while my doctors were a little right (chocolate does contain a lot of sugar and milk, which aren’t necessarily good for adults), they weren’t wholly right either. Chocolate – especially dark chocolate – does have a lot of benefits, including:
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How cold is it really?

It’s that time of the year here in Pittsburgh, when I start cursing the first human who moved north of the tropic of Cancer from the bottom of my heart. For, once again, it takes me 10 minutes from when I’m “ready to leave” to when I actually leave the house after putting on many layers of socks, boots, half a dozen sweaters and coats, a couple of scarves, a hat and, of course, two pairs of gloves. (Whew! It was exhausting just typing all that!)

pit winter

It’s not the actual below-freezing temperatures which get to me, mind you. It’s the wind – the terrible wind which whistles through the little holes in your hat and freezes your ears, finds the little spot of skin that you forgot to cover up and turns it into ice as you wait for the bus in the morning. Continue reading

You’re gonna miss me when I’m gone..

One of the more popular “Did you know?” facts these days seems to be “Did you know Einstein said that if the honey bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live?” Though honeybees do play a major part in pollinating our crops, I had a hard time believing this claim. For one thing, humans have a tendency to come up with very innovative solutions to seemingly deadly problems. More importantly, though, the quote was attributed to Albert Einstein – and surely we know better than to trust those! So, I decided to investigate.

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The Science of Disappearing

Ever since ancient Greece, man has been enticed with the idea of being invisible. Our stories offer different paths to achieve this invisibility – for example, Plato’s shepherd became the King of Lydia with the help of a ring which makes the wearer invisible, and H.G. Wells’ The Invisible man becomes so by drinking a formula he invents.

The popularity of Harry Potter, however, has caused this power to take the form of a cloak in our imaginations. How simple it would be to cover ourselves with a piece of cloth that makes us invisible! Every time you are put in the spotlight against your wishes, made to answer an awkward question or want to be undisturbed, you just slip a cloak over yourself and you’re invisible!

Now our governments are apparently willing to spend money on making this crazy dream come true. Different research groups around the world have come up with different ideas to make this a reality. Though they are all in incipient stages, there seems to be a lot of potential in these ideas. Now we look at a few of these brilliantly crazy ideas. Continue reading