ODDS, ENDS & IN­SPI­RA­TION

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z It was way back in the 17th cen­tury when noted Scot­tish scholar Pa­trick Young made the fol­low­ing sage ob­ser­va­tion: “The trou­ble with weather fore­cast­ing is that it’s right too of­ten for us to ig­nore it and wrong too of­ten for us to rely on it.”

z Those who study such things say that New Year’s Day is the No.1 hol­i­day for car theft. Per­haps they’re mak­ing up for Christ­mas Day, which is typ­i­cally the hol­i­day with the fewest auto thefts.

z I bet you didn’t know there’s a word specif­i­cally used to re­fer to the space be­tween your eye­brows. Yep: It’s called the “ophryon”.

z Fans of old Westerns have doubt­less seen depic­tions of Na­tive Amer­i­cans scalp­ing their en­e­mies. Most prob­a­bly don’t re­alise, though, that the bru­tal prac­tice didn’t orig­i­nate with the In­di­ans. When the Dutch and English set­tlers were try­ing to clear out the na­tives, they were paid a bounty for each scalp they brought back. The Na­tive Amer­i­cans adopted the prac­tice only af­ter the Euro­peans’ ar­rival on the con­ti­nent. z If you’re a run­ner – and a com­pul­sive counter – you might al­ready be aware of the fact that the av­er­age per­son’s feet hit the ground ap­prox­i­mately 500 times per kilo­me­tre when run­ning. z Palaeon­tol­o­gists claim that Ne­an­derthals used tooth­picks. How can they tell, you might well ask? It seems that tooth­pick use leaves dis­tinc­tive grooves on teeth.

NOW HERE’S A TIP

z Do your­self a favour and pick up red and green fes­tive party items, like plates and cups, plain cloth nap­kins and foil-wrapped lol­lies, at af­ter­hol­i­day dis­counts. You can use the red items for Valen­tine’s Day and the green for St. Pa­trick’s Day with none the wiser. z DIY shower spray: Add 1 part vodka to 2 parts wa­ter, plus a few drops of es­sen­tial oil (pep­per­mint or tea tree) to a spray bot­tle. Mist your shower walls to keep mildew at bay. z Res­o­lu­tions are meant to help us fo­cus on im­prove­ment, not to be a source of stress. Take some time to think about the times and sit­u­a­tions that neg­a­tively im­pacted you in the past year. In­stead of mak­ing a blan­ket res­o­lu­tion (lose weight, travel, watch less TV) come up with a few things that will have a spe­cific pos­i­tive ef­fect on your life (go to the gym or take a walk three morn­ings per week, prep cook for the week ahead on Sun­day af­ter­noons).

z “We pur­chased a large, weath­er­proof stor­age bin that we keep out front. It has balls and bats, plus other toys that the kids like to play with out­side. They put the toys back in the bin when done play­ing.” – con­trib­uted by U.D.

z Now’s the time to re­set your cloth­ing hang­ers. Turn the hang­ers in your closet fac­ing out to­ward the room. As you wear items and they go through the laun­dry, put them in the wardrobe fac­ing in as nor­mal. It won’t take long for you to see what you’re NOT wear­ing, and you can do­nate or get rid of the ex­cess.

z “Put car man­u­als into a zip­per-top bag and stick it in the trunk or the seat­back pocket. This will free up space in your glove box for per­sonal items you might need to ac­cess.” – T.F.

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