Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Coping with Crisis

by Ann Landers















If I were asked to give what I consider the single most useful bit of advice for all humanity, it would be this: Expect trouble as an inevitable part of life and, when it comes, hold your head high, look it squarely in the eye and say, "I will be bigger than you. You cannot defeat me." Then repeat yourself the most comforting of all words, "This too shall pass."

To forgive oneself in the face of a devastating experience is perhaps the most difficult of life's challenges. Most of us find it much easier to forgive others. I've received letters brimming the self-recrimination letters that prove no punishment is so painful as the self-inflicted kind.

It was miy high-school English teacher who taught me the futility of rehashing the past. One day, as the students filed into her classroom, we noticed on her desk a quart bottle of milk standing in a heavy stone crock.

"This morning," she announced, "I'm going to teach you a lesson that has nothing to do with English, but it has a lot to do with life." She picked up the bottle of milk and crashed it against the inside of the stone crock. "The lesson is," she said, "don't cry over spilled milk."

Then she invited us to look at the wreckage.

"I want all of you to remember this," she said. "Would any of you attempt to restore the bottle to its original form? Does it do any good to wish the bottle had not been broken? Look at this mess! You can moan about it forever, but it won't put the bottle back together again. Remember this broken bottle of milk when something happens in your life that nothing can undo."

I've reminded myself of that broken bottle of milk in the stone crock time and again. It has helped me remain steady and calm, as well as physically sound. Our bodies take a beating when we put ourselves through an emotional wringer. To try to undo what has been done or agonize about opportunities missed is not only foolish, it's futile.

In many instances, we can't control what happens to us, but we can control our reactions to what happens to us. We can stay down for the count and be carried out of the ring, or we can pull ourselves back to our feet. If we are victimized by others, we must refuse to give them the power to break our spirit, make us physically ill, perhaps even shorten our lives. Most doctors will tell you that worry, anxiety, tension, and anger can make you sicker than a virus.

The expression "nervous breakdown" suggests that nerves have broken down, but organically, the nerves are healthy. The problem is purely emotional.

When you find that someone has "done you wrong," refuse to allow yourself to be consumed with hatred or bitterness. Hatred is like an acid. It can do more damage to the container in which it is stored than to the object on which it is poured.

Even though we may lead the good life and fight the good fight, we are sometimes ripped up not by others but by the mere process of living. Call it bad luck, fate, whatever you choose- some troubles are beyond human control. How do you handle them?

I believe in blind faith. I have known people who have suffered deep personal tragedies, and this faith has helped them. But I also believe in the efficacy of positive action to overcome grief. Time is a healer, but those who help time by using it wisely and well make a more rapid adjustment.

Grief, in part, is self-pity turned inside out. The widow who wails, "He was everything to me. How can I go on without him?" is crying for herself, not for him. The mourner who refuses to let go of his grief eventually isolates himself from his friends. The world may stop for a few hours, or perhaps a few days, to hold a hand or to wipe away a tear, but friends and relatives have problems of their own. Life goes on- and those who refuse to go on with it are left alone to wallow in their misery.

The best prescription for a broken heart activity. I don't mean plunging into a social whirl or running off on trips. Too many people who try to escape by doing just that succeed only in taking their troubles with others. I have told thousands of despondent people, "Enough of this breast-beating. No matter how bad things are with you, there is someone who is worse off- and you can help him."

No one knows why life must be so punishing to some God's finest creatures. Perhaps it is true that everything has a price and we must sacrifice something precious to gain something else. The poets and philosophers say adversity, sorrow, and pain give our lives an added dimension. Those who suffer deeply touch life at every point; they drain the cup to the dregs while others sip only the bubbles on top. Perhaps, no man can touch the stars unless he has known the depths of despair- and fought his way back.

The Godlike

by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Noble be Man
Helpful and good!
For that alone
Distinguish him
From all the beings
Which we know.

Hail to the unknown, the
Higher Beings
Felt within us!
His pattern teach us
Faith in them!

For unfeeling
Is Nature
Still shineth the sun
Over good and evil;
And to the sinner
Smile, as the best.
The moon and the stars
Wind and waters
Thunder and hailstones
Rustle on their way
Smiting down as
They dash along,
One for another.

Just so does Fate
Grope round in the crowd
Seize now the Innocent
Curly-haired boy
Now on the bald
Crown of villain

By great adamantine
Laws everlasting,
Here we must all our
Round of existence
Faith finish.

There can none but Man
Perform the Impossible.
He understandeth,
Chooseth, and judgeth
He can impart to the
Moment duration.

He alone may
The Good reward
The Guilty punish,
Mind and deliver;
All the wayward,anomalous
Bind in the useful.

And the immortals
Them we reverence,
As if they were men and
Did on a grand scale
What the best in man little
Does or feign would do.

Let Noble Man
Be helpful and good!
Ever creating
The Right and the Useful-
Type of those loftier
Beings of whom the heart whispers!


What Is the Sound of Love?
by Mary L. O'Neill


The sound of love
Is a tone of voice
Directed to us
Out of choice.
It isn't rose talk
Or the crumple of silk
Or the purry-pour of
Cream or milk,
Or the delicate clash
Of white dove wings
Though its sound is a scale
Of beautiful things.

It isn't the brush
Of velvety moss
No, it isn't at all. Love
Is sometimes cross.


It isn't the spill
Of a violin
For love is never
That sheer and thin,
Or the song of the sea
On a clear summer day
Though we think of it often
Just that way.
The sound of love
Is a tone of voice
Directed to us

Out of choice
And in that tone
All loved discern
The matchless music
Of concern....

The Little Girl of Hiroshima


I come and stand at every door.
But none can hear my silent tread.
I knock, and yet remain unseen,
For I am dead, for I am dead.

I'm only seven. though I died
In Hiroshima long ago
I'm seven now as I was then-
When children die, they do not grow.

My hair was scorched by swirling flames,
My eyes grew dim, grew dim and blind;
Death came and turned my bones to dust.
And that was scattered by the wind.

I need no fruit, I need no rice,
I need no sweets, or even bread:
I ask for nothing for myself,
For I am dead, for I am dead.

All that I ask is that for peace
You fight today, you fight today.
So that the children of the world
May live and grow and laugh and play.

The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in yellow wood
And, sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim,
And because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden back;
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet, knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubt if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence;
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the oneless traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.



On Work

Kahlil Gibran (excerpts)


And what is it work with love?

It is to weave the cloth with threads drawn from your heart, even as if your beloved were to wear that cloth.

It is to build a house with affection, even as if your beloved were to dwell in that house.

It is to sow seeds with tenderness and reap the harvest with joy, even as if your beloved were to eat the fruit.

It is to charge all things you fashion with a breath of your own spirit,

And to know that all blessed dead are standing about you and watching.

Often have I heard you say, as if speaking in sleep, "He who works in marble, and finds the shape of his own soul in the stone, is nobler than he who ploughs the soil."

"And he who seizes the rainbow to lay it on a cloth in the likeness of man, is more than he who makes the sandals our out feet."

But I say, not in sleep but in the overwakefulness of noontide, that the wind speaks not more sweetly to the giant oaks than to the least of all the blades of grass;

And he alone is great who turns the voice of the wind into a song made sweeter by his own loving.

Work is love made visible.

And if you cannot work with love but only with distate, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.

For if you bake bread with indifference, you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man's hunger.

And if you grudge the crushing of grapes, your grudge distills a poison in the wine.

And if you sing though as angels, and love not the singing, you muffle man's ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.


Money




Workers earn it.
Spendthrifts burn it.
Bankers lend it.
Women spend it.
Forgers fake it.
Taxes take it.
Dying leave it.
Heirs receive it.
Thrifty save it.
Misers crave it.
Robbers seize it.
Rich increase it.
Gamblers lose it.
I could use it.

Dreams
Hold fast to dreams,
For when dreams die,
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams,
For when dreams go,
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.

A Bite of Reality


Have you ever been bitten by a mosquito?
The bite is itchy, isn't it? But do you know that mosquitoes choose the people they bite? You will notice this sometimes. There will be times when you and your friends will be hanging around in a place where there are a lot of mosquitoes. Some will have lots of bites, and some will have only a few.

Why is this so? Scientists also wanted to know. What they did was they asked two people to put their hands in a chamber full of mosquitoes. Then they looked at which man had more bites. Then they took a sample of the men's sweat. Then they analyzed the sweat of each man.

What did they find out? They discovered that the man with fewer mosquito bites had a special chemical in his sweat. They also discovered that mosquitoes found this chemical very bad-smelling.

You see, mosquitoes use their smell to find their victims. But when they smell this chemical, they get turned off by the smell. So they leave that man alone. The scientists hope they can use this result to help make better mosquito repellants.

Now what happens when you are one of those people who do not have this special chemical in your sweat? Is there anything else you can do so mosquitoes will not bite you? Here are some tips. First, you can wear long clothes, like long-sleeve shirts and long pants to cover your skin. Mosquitoes like dark colors, so use white-colored clothing to keep them away. You may also apply some mosquito repellant lotion to keep mosquitoes away. But if you do not want to use lotions that contain chemicals, use eucalyptus oil(duhh...) This oil is also effective in keeping those buzzards away.


Hunting For Blood

Mosquitoes have been around for more than 30 million years.
How did they survive that long? Because they are so good at finding their favorite, which is blood. Actually only the female mosquito drinks blood. The males drinks mostly nectars for food.

Why are female mosquitoes so good at finding blood? Because they use three kinds of sensors to find it. First, they use chemical sensors that find carbon dioxide. When they smell carbon dioxide, they know that an animal is giving off that gas and is nearby. Next, they can detect movement. If they see something move, they know that the moving thing may be alive and has blood. Lastly, they can also detect heat. If they feel something warm, they know that a warm-blooded animal may be around. They become like heat-seeking missile and attack!

The word "mosquito" comes from the Spanish name that means "little fly".

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Heartbeat

One heart alone, makes but a single beat
A beat so low and incomplete
A heart all alone that is waiting to be heard
Knows not the beauty of many singing bird
A heart that is alone knows not tenderness
It only knows the feeling of emptiness
Until by chance another beat it hears
A sound it has longed for all these years
Two hearts are beating within one another
They have finally found each other.





She's the One

She's like phantom in the night,
When she first gleam upon my sight.
I always want to feel her hand in mine,
So I would know if she were fine.
I love her with all my heart,
That's why I don't want her to be apart.
Her eyes like twilights fair,
Twilights too her dusky hair.
I want to bathe with her in the sea,
And soar high and see.
I always want her to be the one,
For she's always be the one.

Monday, December 15, 2008

My Hidden Love


I know it's wrong for me to feel this way
Though I knew right from the start
That I would only be second best
For she who holds the key to my heart.

I can't go on this way
The feeling is tearing me apart
This is love that can never be
I am fool I can see

My heart is braking
Will there ever be you and me
Even though your heart is taken
I still dream that someday
It's me who stands by your side

Until that dream comes true
I will hide this feeling for you
In days to come you will say "I Love You Too"

True love is beautiful,
Because it is meaningful.
You become inspired,
And you will not be tired.
You will write a song,
But it is not long.
For someone you care,
You will always be there.
You give all to your love one,
But you don't know who is the right one.

Learning To Die




When you know how to die, you will learn how to live! Morbid as it may seem to be, a discussion of death jolts us to an inevitably we are all destined to experience. By denying ourselves to come face to face with our own mortality, we are thrust into a pretentious existence bound to lose track of the essential things of life. For how do we spare people's feelings about death by hiding it from one's consciousness?

To acknowledge death is to recognize the transitory nature of our own existence, which impels us to add not just years to life but life to years. And is the natural tendency of the will to hang on to a life (filled with memories, friends and loved ones) one has been accustomed to live. But to acknowledge the inevitability of death is to compel us to see the important things of life, which sometimes lies buried in the illusions of this world.

We should learn from the experience of dying man... when the news of his demise comes to his consciousness he readily sets into motion two important undertakings... (1) He makes sure that NO TIME IS WASTED on foolish activities and starts spending his TIME in a worthwhile activities for he knows his time would soon be up, and (2) He reconciles with his enemies and profound expresses his love to those he cares for. The jolt of his demise brings him to see and do things differently, which a normal and healthy person wouldn't usually do.

But come to think of it, this dying man is luckier than we are. Because it is in consciously acknowledging his own death that he is able to PREPARE for this eventually while we (who stagger in the illusion of our immortality) still wallow in a life we think we would never leave behind, which is more often unexpectedly terminated by a death we thought would never come.

A man who does not see himself as a "being towards death" evades this certainly with a carefree disposition and busies himself with the urgency of "unnecessary concerns," deferring death as "something later." But a man who anticipates the possibility of death (free from unwarranted anxieties) FOCUSES an individual to chart a life that brings him to a fulfillment of his potentialities. This projection of his utmost possibility will provide him with a vision of his own existence, the latent possibilities lying before him.

"We have all been sent on a journey. We had no choice about when or where it started. We don't know when, where or how it will end. We have no map. All we know for sure is that it's bound to end sometime. All we know is that once started, we must continue everyday, whether we feel like it or not. We start with no possessions, and we finish, we must turn all we have accumulated. In the end, say some, we will be rewarded or punished... and that's for sure!" (excerpts from the Sower's Seed by Brian Cavanaugh)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Little Girl's Christmas

Winnifred E. Lincoln
It was Christmas Eve, and Little Girl had just hung up her stocking by the fireplace right where it would be all ready for Santa when he slipped down the chimney. She knew he was coming, because-well, because it was Christmas Eve, and because he always had come to leave gifts for her on all the other Christmas Eves that she could remember, and because he always had come to leave gifts for her on all the other Christmas Eves that she could remember, and because she had seen his pictures everywhere down town that afternoon when she was out with Mother.

Still, she wasn't JUST satisfied. Way down in her heart, she was a little uncertain-you see, when you have never really and truly seen a person with your very own eyes, it's hard to feel as if you exactly believed in him-even though that person always has left beautiful gifts for you every time he has come.

"Oh, he'll come," said Little Girl; "I just know he will be here before morning, but somehow I wish-"

"Well, what do you wish?" said Tiny Voice close by her-so close that Little Girl fairly jumped when she heard it.

"Why, I wish I could SEE Santa myself. I'd just like to go and see his house and his workshop, and ride in his sleigh, and know Mrs. Santa-'twould be such fun, and then I'd KNOW for sure."

"Why don't you go, then?" said Tiny Voice. "It's easy enough. Just try on the these Shoes, and take this Light in your hand, and you'll your way all right."

So Little Girl looked down on the hearth, and there were two cunning little Shoes side by side, and little Spark of Light close them just as if they were made out of one of the glowing coals of the wood-fire. Such cunning Shoes as they were all made out of one of the glowing coals of the wood-fire. Such cunning Shoes as they were-Little Girl could hardly wait to pull off her slippers and try them on. They looked as if they were too small, but they weren't-they fitted exactly right, and just as Little girl had put them both on and had taken the Light in her hand, along came a little Breath of Wind, and away she went up the chimney, along with ever so many other little Sparks, past the Soot Fairies, and out into the Open Air, where Jack Frost and the Star Beams were all busy at work making the world look pretty for Christmas.

Away went the Little Girl-Two Shoes, Bright Light, and all-higher and higher, until she looked like a wee bit of a star up in the sky. It was the funniest thing, but she seemed to know the way perfectly, and didn't have to stop to make inquiries anywhere. You see it was straight road all the way, and when one doesn't have to think about turning to the right or left, it makes things very much easier. Pretty soon, Little Girl noticed that there was a bright light all around her-oh, a very bright light- and right away something down in her heart began to make her feel very happy indeed. She didn't know that the Christmas spirits and the little Christmas fairies were all around her and even right inside her, because she couldn't see a single one of them, even though her eyes were very bright and could usually see a great deal.

But that was just it, and Little Girl felt as if she wanted to laugh and sing and be glad. It made her remember the Sick Boy who lived next door, and she said herself that she would carry him one of her prettiest picture books in the morning, so that he could have something to make him happy all day. By and by, when the bright light all around her had grown very, very much brighter, Little Girl saw a path right in front of her, all straight and trim, leading up a hill to a big, big house with ever and ever so many windows in it. When she had gone just a bit nearer, she saw candles in every window, red and green and yellow ones, and every one burning brightly, so Little Girl knew right away that these were Christmas candles to light her on her journey, and make the way dear for her, and something told her that this was Santa's house, and that pretty soon she would perhaps see Santa himself.

Just as she neared the steps and before she could possibly have had time to ring the bell, the door opened-opened on itself as wide as could be and there stood not Santa himself-don't think it but a funny Little Man with slender little legs and a roly-poly stomach which shook every now and then when he laughed. You would have known right away, just as Little Girl knew, that he was a very happy little man, and you would have guessed right away, too, that the reason he was guessed right away, too, that the reason he was so roly-poly was because he laughed and chuckled and smiled all the time-for it's only sour, cross folks who are thin and skimpy. Quick as a wink, he pulled off his little peaked red cap, smiled the broadest kind of a smile, and said, "Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas! Come in! Come in!

So in went the Little Girl, holding fast to Little Man's hand, and when she was really inside there was the jolliest, reddest fire all glowing and snapping, and there were Little Man and all his brothers and sisters, who said their names were "Merry Christmas," and "Good Cheer," and ever so many other jolly-sounding things, and there were such a lot of them that Little Girl just knew she never could count them, no matte how long she tried. All around her were bundles and boxes and piles of toys and games, and Little Girl knew that these were all ready and waiting to be loaded into Santa's big sleigh for his reindeer to whirl them away over cloudtops and snowdrifts to the little people down below who had left their stockings all ready for him. Pretty soon all the little Good Cheer Brothers began to hurry and bustle and carry out the bundles as fast as they could to the steps where Little Girl could hear the jingling bells and stamping of hoofs. So Little Girl picked up some bundles and skipped along, too, for she wanted to help a bit herself-it's no fun whatever at Christmas unless you can help, you know-and there, in the yard, stood the BIGGEST sleigh that Little Girl had ever seen, and the reindeer were all stamping and prancing and jingling the bells on their harnesses, because they were so eager to be on their way to the Earth once more.


She could hardly wait for Santa to come, and just as she had begun to wonder where he was, the door opened again and out came a whole forest of Christmas trees, at least it looked just as if a whole forest had started out for a walk somewhere, but a second glance showed Little Girl that there were thousands of Christmas sprites, and that each one carried a tree or a big Christmas wreath on his back. Behind them all, she could hear someone laughing loudly, and talking in a big, jovial voice that sounded as if he were good friends with the whole world.

And straightway she knew that Santa himself was coming. Little Girl's heart went pit-a-pat for a minute, while she wondered if Santa would notice her, but she didn't have to wonder long, for he spied her at once and said: "Bless my soul! who's this? And where did you come from?

Little Girl thought perhaps she might be afraid to answer him, but she wasn't one bit afraid. You see, he had such a kind little twinkle in his eyes that she felt happy right away as she replied, "Oh, I'm Little Girl, and I wanted so much to see Santa that I just came, and here I am!"

"Ho! ho! ho! ho! ho!" laughed Santa, "and here you are! Wanted to see Santa, did you? And so you came! Now that's very nice, and it's too bad I'm in such a hurry, for we should like nothing better than to show you about and give you a real good time. But you see, it is quarter of twelve now, and I must be on my way at once, else I'll never reach that first chimney top by midnight. I'd call Mrs. Santa and ask her to get you some supper, but she is busy finishing dolls' clothes, which must be done before morning, and I guess we'd better not bother her. Is there anything that you would like, Little Girl?" and good old Santa put his warm hand on Little Girl's curls and she felt warmth and kindness clear down to her very heart. You see, my dears, that even though Santa was in such a great hurry, he wasn't too busy to stop and make someone happy for a minute, even if it was someone no bigger than Little Girl.

So she smiled back into Santa's face and said: "Oh, Santa, if I could ONLY ride down to Earth with you behind those splendid reindeer! I'd love to go; won't you PLEASE take me? I'm so small that I won't take up much room on the seat, and I'll keep very still not bother one bit!"

Then Santa laughed, SUCH a laugh, big and loud and rollicking, and he said, "Wants a ride, does she? Well, well, shall we take her, Little Elves? Shall we take her, Little Fairies? Shall we take her, Good Reindeer?"

And all the Little Elves hopped and skipped and brought Little Girl a sprig of holly; and all the Little Fairies bowed and smiled and brought her a bit of mistletoe; and all the Good Reindeer jingled their bells loudly, which meant, "Oh yes! let's take her! She's a good Little Girl! Let her ride!" And before Little Girl could even think, she found herself all tucked up in the big fur robes beside Santa, and away they went, right out into clouds, through the Milky Way, and right under the very handle of the Big Dipper, on, on, toward the Earthland, whose lights Little Girl began to see twinkling away down below her. Presently she felt the runners scrape upon something, and she knew they must be on someone's roof, and that Santa would slip down someone's chimney in a minute.

How she wanted to go, too! You see, if you had never been down a chimney and seen Santa fill up the stockings, you would want to go quite as much as Little Girl did, now, wouldn't you? So, just as Little Girl was wishing hard as ever she could wish, she heard Tiny Voice say, "Hold tight to his arm! Hold tight to his arm!" So she held Santa's arm tight and close, and he shouldered his pack, never thinking that it was heavier than usual, and with a bound and a slide, there they were, Santa, Little Girl, pack and all, right in the middle of a room where there was a fireplace and stockings all hung up for Santa to fill.

Just then Santa noticed Little Girl. He had forgotten all about her for a minute, and he was very much surprised to find that she had come, too. "Bless my soul!" he said, "where did you come from, Little Girl? and how in the world can we both get back up that chimney again? It's easy enough to slide down, but it's quite another matter to climb up again!" and Santa looked real worried. But Little Girl was beginning to feel very tired by this time, for she had a very exciting evening, so she said. "Oh, never mind me, Santa. I've had such a good time, and just as soon stay here a while as not. I believe I'll curl up on this hearth-rug a few minutes and have a little nap, for it looks as warm and cozy as our own hearth and it's my own nursery, for there is Teddy bear in his chair where I leave him every night, and there's Bunny Cat curled up on his cushion in the corner."

And Little Girl turned to thank Santa and say goodbye to him, but either he had gone very quickly, or else she had fallen asleep very quickly-she never could tell which for the next thing she knew, Daddy was holding her in his arms and was saying, "What is my Little Girl doing here? She must go to bed, for it's Christmas Eve, and old Santa won't come if he thinks there are any little folks about."

But Little Girl knew better than that, and when she began to tell him all about it, and how the Christmas fairies had welcomed her, and how Santa had given her such a fine ride, Daddy laughed and laughed, and said, "You've been dreaming, Little Girl, you've been dreaming." But Little Girl knew better than that, too, for there on the hearth was the little Black Coal, which had given her Two Shoes and Bright Light, and tight in her hand she held a holly berry, which one of the Christmas Sprites had placed there. More than all that, there she was on the hearth-rug herself, just as Santa had left her, and that was the best proof of all.

The trouble was, Daddy himself had never been a Little Girl, so he couldn't tell anything about it, but we know she hadn't been dreaming, now, don't we, my dears?


Understanding the Story



  • What was Little Girl's wish? Did it come true?
  • Describe her adventure with Santa, the Little Elves, and the Little Fairies.
  • How did she know that she was not dreaming?
Sharing Ideas and Feelings

  • Do you believe in Santa Claus? Why or why not?
  • What do you think does Santa Claus symbolize?
  • Would Christmas be the same without Santa Claus

There's Water Inside a POPCORN KERNEL

Do you like popcorn? Have you ever wondered where it comes from?


Popcorn actually looks like an ordinary kernel of corn before it is popped. It contains a hard type of starch. But its outer covering is hard and waterproof. Inside each kernel is a little water. When popcorn is placed in a popcorn popper or even an ordinary covered frying pan, the water inside heats up and turns to steam. When this happens, the starch starts to soften up.

The heat and pressure build up until finally, the hull's breaking point is reached and it explodes. The pressure inside the kernel drops and the stream expands outward. This causes the now soft starch to break out and from the popcorn you see.

If the popcorn kernels are heated too slowly, they won't pop. That's because the stream can leak out of the tip of the kernel. The tip at which the kernel is attached to the cob is not waterproof. When there is a leak, the popcorn will just grow bigger. If you notice, some popcorns are simply round.

If the popcorns are heated too rapidly, they will pop only partially. The steam inside will cause the hull to break apart too soon. The hull explodes before the starch has fully softened. The result is a partially popped kernel with a hard center.

If the popcorns are heated at just the right speed, it will puff out completely. What you get is a popcorn that's both fluffy and crunchy.

Not What They Seem

by Ivan G. Olegario

Sweet Cotton

It looks like cotton, but more colorful. And you can eat it. It's sweet, and melts in your mouth. What is it? It's cotton candy.

Cotton candy has many names. It is called candy floss in the United Kingdom, and fairy floss in Australia. No matter what they're called, cotton candy all over the world is made of the same things--pure sugar and a lot of air.




Half of the fun of cotton candy is eating it. The other half is from seeing how it's made. First, sugar is mixed with some food coloring. Then the mixture is poured into a small heated bowl. The heated bowl. The heat melts the sugar, turning it into a liquid. The liquid is spun around forced through small holes, the air cools it down and the stream of molten sugar becomes solid, threadlike sugar. The sugar threads are caught in a large metal bowl, and the cotton-candy maker twirls the threads around a stick or cone.

If you mix the cotton candy with water, it instantly dissolves and you will see that it is nothing but colored sugar that has evaporated from the Earth's surface into the atmosphere.

Glittering Conductor





Gold is a flexible metal. Aside being used as material for making jewelry and money, gold also turns out to be very practicable for tne energy sector.

Gold is a good conductor, although copper is the most common material for electrical wiring. This precious metal is an excellent material in promoting excellent and high quality conducting performance for surface-to-surface contacts in some communication devices. Just take a look at a SIM connector in cellular phone. The connector, which comes in contact with the SIM card, is actually gold-plated. This allows for better surface-to-surface contact, thus effective conduction, between the card and the SIM card holder.

Since gold is very resistant to corrosion, it is also used on interconnects between audio cables (in radios or MP3s) or computer interface card circuits. Moreover, gold effectively helps shield spacecraft and skyscrapers from the sun's heat. Because gold does not react with oxygen, it effectively protects electronic parts and devices from rust, thus making the devices and parts function well and last longer.




Think it Over Wooden Golf Balls

The golf ball that golfers use nowadays is made of special materials. It is often has a core made of rubber or resin and a white outer covering made of plastic.


But did you know that the first golf balls were made entirely of wood? They were made from the wood of the elm or birch tree. The balls, however, did not react uniformly when hit. Thus, it was changed from one form to another until the small dimpled ball was born.
 
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