Monday, November 29, 2010

at the library...

When I am waiting not-so-patiently for an internet computer, I have a few non-fiction books I pick out of the shelves, but haven't yet checked out, to pass the time. I may later, but for now they are a convenient source, something to do. I read in one, then place it on the reshelving cart, and later pick up another one, sometimes all four in one day!

Currently my little stack includes:

The Great Smokies: From Natural Habitat to National Park by Daniel S. Pierce
North Carolina Rivers by John Hairr
The Moravian Community in Colonial North Carolina by Daniel B. Thorp
Discoverers: An Encyclopedia of Explorers and Exploration, ed. Helen Delpar

Of these four, I am the most impressed with 'The Great Smokies' which is suprisingly scholarly and a study in environmental science and natural history. I consider all four of these well worth my time reading, however.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Catan commentege

Lest I forget...

Everytime I play Catan (or Endeavor, or a few other games) I forget everything I learned last time I played, especially from the mistakes I made.

Well, I've decided to make a concerted effort to provide myself with a log of my gaming mistakes so I can learn from them.

In my recent game of Catan (a week ago by now; I've had trouble getting Internet time), I made my biggest mistake in allowing my opponents to cirsumvent my, by choosing too early to focus on upgrading into what I call castles. Roads before castles, moron! *Hits head* Second, I always seem to forget about my 4:1 trade with the bank. Its a bad option, but at least it's an option, that is if I remember about it. Third, although I don't think it was a crippling choice, placing my starting settlements distant from the key resources of lumber and brink was an oversight. I could have done trading for the early on, but going back to my other mistakes I built castles before roads, which allowed other players time to cut me off.

It was actually a very close game, and a good time, but I would have leaped into the lead if I had not made these oversights. And I don't like making mistakes, win or lose.

In short:
1) Roads before castles!
2) Brick and wood!
3) Remember the 4:1 option!

Quick update on my STCCG so-called Transwarp game.
Well, I have been making semi-frequent "tweaks" for quite a while now, and I need to post the newest deck list. I just added a Klingon with both SECURITY and Honor, both very Klingon traits. As a compromise to TrekSense, I removed the two Kazon-related dilemmas I had had, and that gave me the wonderful opportunity for Conundrum and Temporal Loop, both improving the game significantly I think. Players want an opportunity to battle, it seems, and temporal quicks are an essential part of the Trek experience.
Not that that will make much sense to people other than I and a few others like me ... haha

While I am blogging about gaming, I thought I'd comment on something I thought of more overtly recently than before. I would consider Catan, Citadels, and Carcassone to together be a milestone for the modern gamer. Once aquainted with these three, they have acheived what I consider a important familiarity with the gaming culture. To be frank, I am basing this on my own experience, my own entry into the gaming culture I didn't realize existed. And in large part I can be forgiven, because as I've heard tabletop board gaming as it now stands is a fairly recent thing, ushered in by Catan itself. At least for the American crowd. There have been "gaming culture" elements for a very long time, but the Catan-generation is something distinct.
Oh, and I am still reading "Intimate Lies"

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hydrogen Peroxide: A Simple Trick to Beat a Cold

Hydrogen Peroxide: A Simple Trick to Beat a Cold

It's a widespread misconception that colds are caused by bacteria. Colds are actually triggered by a virus, which means if your physician prescribes you an antibiotic, it will be absolutely useless.

I don't advise over-the-counter medications, but one simple treatment you can try that is surprisingly effective against upper respiratory infections is hydrogen peroxide.

Many patients at my Natural Health Center have had remarkable results in curing colds and flu within 12 to 14 hours when administering a few drops of 3 percent hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) into each ear. You will hear some bubbling, which is completely normal, and possibly feel a slight stinging sensation.

Wait until the bubbling and stinging subside (usually 5 to 10 minutes), then drain onto a tissue and repeat with the other ear. A bottle of hydrogen peroxide in 3 percent solution is available at any drug store for a couple of dollars or less. It is simply amazing how many people respond to this simple, inexpensive treatment.

So What Else Can You do to Recover From a Cold, Quicker … and Prevent One in the First Place?

As I said above, the number one way to conquer a cold (or flu) is vitamin D. Vitamin D is an amazingly effective antimicrobial agent, producing 200 to 300 different antimicrobial peptides in your body that kill bacteria, viruses and fungi. So optimizing your levels will not only help send a cold virus packing … it will help ward off cold viruses in the first place.

The best source for vitamin D is direct sun exposure. But for many of us, this just isn't practical during the winter. The next best option to sunlight is the use of a safe indoor tanning device. If neither natural nor artificial sunlight is an option, then using oral vitamin D3 supplements is your best bet.

Based on the latest research, many experts now agree you need about 35 IU's of vitamin D per pound of body weight. This recommendation also includes children, the elderly and pregnant women.

However, keep in mind that vitamin D requirements are highly individual, as your vitamin D status is dependent on numerous factors, such as the color of your skin, your location, and how much sunshine you're exposed to on a regular basis. So, although these recommendations may put you closer to the ballpark of what most people likely need, it is simply impossible to make a blanket recommendation that will cover everyone's needs.

The only way to determine your optimal dose is to get your blood tested. Ideally, you'll want to maintain a vitamin D level of 50-65 ng/ml year-round.

For an in-depth explanation of everything you need to know before you get tested, please read my latest updates in Test Values and Treatment for Vitamin D Deficiency.

Monday, November 15, 2010

what have you read of...these?

I have been reading a bit by Philip Jose Farmer, and he has mentioned various books I now want to look into.

Thus, I ordered a large stack from the library, and I can olny read a few of these by their due date(s), I am sure.

The Sea Wolf by Jack London
The Unsocial Socialist by Bernard Shaw
Song of Hiawatha and Other Poems by Longfellow

...and a few others that aren't as worthy of note.
Believe me, three books does not a stack make.
Farmer has also make me curious about Dostoyevsky and Dr. E. E. Smith.
I've been meaning to read some more Dickens for a long time now, too,
Should I be?

Zelda Fitzgerald

I am reading a partial biography of F. Scott Fitzgerald, and I got very curious as to why so much to-do was made of Zelda's looks. Well, now I have a new "Glorious Black and White" woman to add to my "list" along with Maureen O'Sullivan'Sullivan

Monday, November 8, 2010

How many teamsters does it take to change a lightbulb?

How many teamsters does it take to change a lightbulb?
Six, you got a problem with that?

How many production managers does it take to change a light bulb?
Four, but you can only have three!

How many electricians does it take to change a light bulb?
Only one -- they're really good at that kind of thing

How many grips does it take to change a light bulb?
Grips don't change light bulbs. That's Electric.

How many script supervisors does it take to change a light bulb?
Wait, which hand was it in?

How many art directors does it take to change a light bulb?
Does it have to be a lightbulb? I have this really great piñata.