Monday, September 28, 2009

"How Much of Your Memory Is True"

"Rita Magil was driving down a Montreal boulevard one sunny morning in 2002 when a car came blasting through a red light straight toward her. “I slammed the brakes, but I knew it was too late,” she says. “I thought I was going to die.” The oncoming car smashed into hers, pushing her off the road and into a building with large cement pillars in front. A pillar tore through the car, stopping only about a foot from her face. She was trapped in the crumpled vehicle, but to her shock, she was still alive."

This lede was very catching to me. The mind is a wondrous thing; what it can do, what it can make you think for instance. Having this lede be from a personal experience really is what pulled me in. I wanted to know more as soon as I read the last line. I think always starting out with a story in a lede will always be a catcher for people. The title I think was also very appealing because it makes you think. Are you living a lie? Is all of your memory true, or is is all just made up in your head to make you believe in something else?
If a lede can make you ask questions, I feel the writer has accomplished its purpose. As long as those questions are answered in the following lines I feel it is a job well done.
This lede in particular makes me feel for this woman, it held suspense over my head, how could she have managed to stay alive after all of that? After continuing my reading the story just evolved into something that will always make me wonder about what really goes on up there in my brain.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Imagine laying down on your couch enjoying a nice Christmas movie at home for a relaxing weekend, and you hear this annoying buzzing noise. The buzzing noise; however, is a very familiar that people tend to run away screaming from. This yellow and black stripped flying assassin, which I am going to call it because they always seem to have a target, landed right on my blanket.
Another name, of course, is the Bee. They are a monophyletic lineage within the super-family, Apoidea, and also classified by the taxon name Anthophilia. The only place that bee's are not found are in Antarctica, for obvious reasons one should be able to figure out.
Bees are known for their pollination and for producing honey and beeswax. Bees have a long proboscis (a complex "tongue") that allows them to reach the nectar from flowers. Bees are very important in the pollination for flowers, without them we probably wouldn't have them. They are also a specialized form of a wasp.
This time of season bees are out in full force trying to find warmer places to stay...and those warmer places just happen to be inside my house. Hopefully they don't sneak up on anyone else while they are trying to enjoy a Christmas movie in September.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

"The Pesky Fruit Fly"

Imagine sitting at your kitchen table enjoying some breakfast and having a fruit fly land in your cereal. Nice thought isn't it?

I'm sure everyone has encountered that lovely little black spec flying around them when they are trying to enjoy a nice meal.

That lovely little black spec flying at turtle speeds, however, seem like ninjas because either they disappear when you try to catch them or, they just aren't there.

The fruit fly is part of the Drosophilidae family, and has a very short lifespan.
Drosophilids are considered nuisance flies, which definitely can describe this little guy.
Fruit flies can be seen year round, but mostly in the summer/fall seasons because they are attracted to ripened and fermented fruits and vegetables. Adults are about 1/8 inch long. Something very interesting I thought was that their entire life-cycle from an egg to an adult is completed in about a week.

Being such a nuisance, did you know that fruit flies can also have the potential to contaminate food with bacteria along with other disease-producing organisms? I definitely didn't know this.
I'm sure now everyone is going to try their hardest to make sure they never buy fruit or vegetables again. Well, instead of becoming unhealthy the best way you can avoid those pesky problems would be to get rid of a fruit flies source of attraction. Any produce that has ripened should be eaten, discarded or refrigerated.

If the problem persists there are certain traps that you can make very easily. I know this because I've done it plenty of times. You can make a trap by placing a paper funnel- you can use a rolled up sheet of notebook paper. What I have used before is a paper plate rolled into a funnel, it works just as well. Put this into the jar, which will have a little bit of cider vinegar at the bottom. Then, just place these traps where fruit flies are seen. It will look something like this picture.

So the next time you are enjoying that delicious breakfast and the little ninja comes flying at you, know you aren't alone.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

"Bathing, but Not Alone"

"There are some things it is better just not to think about. Like the 10,000 bacteria you inhale with each breath in the average office building. Or the 10 million bacteria in each glass of tap water. Microbiologists have now added something else to the list of things too gross to contemplate: the deluge of bacteria that hit your face and flow deep into your lungs in the morning shower."

Honestly, what grabbed my attention to this article was the title, "Bathing, but Not Alone." It was one of those moments where I thought....."Why am I not bathing alone, pretty sure I am."
The lede, however, was interesting. It left me wondering what this bacteria would do after it "flows deep into your lungs in the morning shower." How nice, makes me want to shower. But other than that I thought it was a very informative yet catchy lede. It left me with wonder, and gave me the knowledge of all this other bacteria we breathe in that I had no clue about.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

"Creepy Bug"

I was walking down my stairs in my apt building and outside on this box thing was this bug. It is scary and I do not like it. I obviously took a picture...Anyways, it is called the blue wing wasp....and is found in Australia, unless I am talking about a completely different insect...this one looked the closest to it. However, some people say they are found in southern Canada and upper New York. It's scientific name Blue Flower Wasp, or Hair Flower Wasp... meaning Discollia Soror. They are in the family Scollidae. They are nectar feeders and the larvae feed on scareb beetle grub. They are 20 to 30mm long and has iridescent blue wings with a black body.

I am not sure if this is the exact bug but it looks exactly like the one I saw. Every site I read, however, says that this bug is from I don't know if it got lost in upstate NY or what.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

"Birth Order-Fun to debate, but How Important?"

Being the eldest of my family I feel like I was put up to the challenge of setting a good example for my younger sister. However, my mistakes are taken more seriously then those of my hers. I think there is that necessary feeling of a younger sibling to look up to the oldest, but sometimes when the younger one outshines the oldest it is like the older one did something wrong.

Usually how it goes is the older one is "always the smarter one." In my family I personally thought that she(my little sister) was the smarter one. But then again, I bet she would think the opposite. I think parents have a lot to do with how their kids grow up and who they are as people, obviously everyone knows this. But what I didn't realize until after reading this article was that first time parents usually do things differently with each child. The first getting the most outrageous attention and elaborate gifts, because well simply it's their first born. They do different things with them teach them for the first time. When the second child comes along parents probably have this whole dejavu feeling and think it is second nature because they've already done it before. Like if you keep doing something or practicing something you will eventually become really good at it. So in a way the second child is getting jipped in the whole growing up process.

The other point of view though from my side would be, the second child gets a whole new experience on learning things. They will see first hand on what not to do because more than likely the older sibling will be getting in some type of trouble or making some type of mistake. They will take this and learn from it, I know my sister has and she tells me all the time that she looks up to me but it still puts a pressure on me having to always be well, not right, but living up to what she thinks I should be or how she pictures me to be. Basically she is living vicariously through me.

Having a younger sister has its high and low points. You get to watch them try to be like you, or tell you they look up to you. However, there will always be that nagging feeling of wanting to know what it would be like to have an older sister, so you can put the blame on them. Something I have a feeling ever older sibling hears throughout their lifetime will be, "But you let so and so do this why can't I?" I would love to say this, but unfortunetly never will.

Friday, September 4, 2009

"Performance and Safety in Ice Skating"

This video blog/ article about figure skating has a really big "hits home" factor with me. I have been skating since I was 8 years old, and taken the past couple of years off due to college. I have experienced MANY injuries as my life of a figure skater, a couple in particular almost paralyzing. I have fallen on my tailbone so many times I have lost count. I have also almost broken 2 ribs but thankfully just bruised them very badly. I can continue with the list of injuries going from ankles to knees to elbows...the list goes on and on. For a sport known for its grace and perfection there are definitely some consequences that many people don't realize because apparently to some skating is just dressing up in frilly costumes. The time put into each and every move, jump, and spin can take weeks, months and even years to accomplish. In this video it showed how they are putting sensors on parts of the body to get the proper rotations and movements that occur when doing jumps. With this technology the skater will know what to fix and how to improve some of their moves. This will definitely help with decreasing injury rates. I wish I could test some of this technology out. I really feel like it will help skaters a lot and save them the time they take off to rest up after crazy injuries.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

"Finding a ScapeGoat When Epidemics Strike"

It seems like today we all try to blame anyone but ourselves in any given situation. With this major Swine Flu scare going around we...the United States are doing it again by blaming Mexico. Many People do not know this but according to this article people have been scrutinizing and even causing an uproar in attacks. Some people were even trying to close the border.
According Dr. Liise-anne Pirofski, whenever people are suffering there is a need to know why and how this is occurring for our own sakes. When this doesn't happen people start to place blame on one another. This occurs also in everyday life I think. People are always making themselves feel better by putting other people down. If there is any way possible to try and make themselves feel better people will somehow figure out a way to accomplish this.
Even when naming the Swine Flu Oubreak, or any Virus at that, cautions are takin into account because they don't want to cause a bigger scare and point fingers at any one person increasing panic among society.
This article even states that the Spanish Flu never even started in Spain. It was just found first in Spain and then the media did reports on it finally.
I just find placing blame on ANYONE very immoral when it is not their fault, kind of like the whole you're innocent until proven guilty. Obviously now we know that the Swine Flu is from Mexico, but that doesn't mean "Let's go around and attack and hurt them, not let them allowed into the country." I understand people are scared, as am I, but at the end of the day the people that care, and are genuine are going to be the ones in better situations and Mexico will still be known as where the Swine Flu started.... or I may be completely wrong.
I just feel like people need to step back and look at the WHOLE picture before pointing fingers and causing drama between countries and people alone.

"Teachers Comments"