Thursday, May 27, 2010

Morihei Ueshiba

Morihei Ueshiba (植芝 盛平, Ueshiba Morihei?, December 14, 1883–April 26, 1969) was a famous martial artist and founder of the Japanese martial art of aikido. He is often referred to as Kaiso (開祖?), meaning "founder", or Ōsensei, "Great Teacher".

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Aikido (合気道, aikidō?) is a Japanese martial art developed by Morihei Ueshiba as a synthesis of his martial studies, philosophy, and religious beliefs. Aikido is often translated as "the Way of unifying (with) life energy"[1] or as "the Way of harmonious spirit."[2] Ueshiba's goal was to create an art that practitioners could use to defend themselves while also protecting their attacker from injury.

Aikido is performed by blending with the motion of the attacker and redirecting the force of the attack rather than opposing it head-on. This requires very little physical strength, as the aikidōka (aikido practitioner) "leads" the attacker's momentum using entering and turning movements. The techniques are completed with various throws or joint locks.[3] Aikido can be categorized under the general umbrella of grappling arts.

Aikido derives mainly from the martial art of Daitō-ryū Aiki-jūjutsu, but began to diverge from it in the late 1920s, partly due to Ueshiba's involvement with the Ōmoto-kyō religion. Ueshiba's early students' documents bear the term aiki-jūjutsu.[4] Many of Ueshiba's senior students have different approaches to aikido, depending on when they studied with him. Today aikido is found all over the world in a number of styles, with broad ranges of interpretation and emphasis. However, they all share techniques learned from Ueshiba and most have concern for the well-being of the attacker.



A portmanteau (pronounced /pɔrtmænˈtoʊ/ ( listen), plural: portmanteaus or portmanteaux) or portmanteau word is used broadly to mean a blend of two (or more) words or morphemes and their meanings into one new word.[1][2][3] In linguistics fields, a portmanteau is defined as a blend of two or more function words.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Divorce Rate

What is the current divorce rate in America?
It is frequently reported that the divorce rate in America is 50%. This data is not accurately correct, however, it is reasonably close to actual. The Americans for Divorce Reform estimates that "Probably, 40 or possibly even 50 percent of marriages will end in divorce if current trends continue.", which is actually a projection.

"50% of all marriages in the America end in divorce."
The above statement about the divorce rate in America hides all the details about distribution, however.

Age at marriage for those who divorce in America
Age Women Men
Under 20 years old 27.6% 11.7%
20 to 24 years old 36.6% 38.8%
25 to 29 years old 16.4% 22.3%
30 to 34 years old 8.5% 11.6%
35 to 39 years old 5.1% 6.5%

The divorce rate in America for first marriage, vs second or third marriage
50% percent of first marriages, 67% of second and 74% of third marriages end in divorce, according to Jennifer Baker of the Forest Institute of Professional Psychology in Springfield, Missouri.

According to enrichment journal on the divorce rate in America:
The divorce rate in America for first marriage is 41%
The divorce rate in America for second marriage is 60%
The divorce rate in America for third marriage is 73%

The divorce rate in America for childless couples and couples with children
According to discovery channel, couples with children have a slightly lower rate of divorce than childless couples.

Sociologists believe that childlessness is also a common cause of divorce. The absence of children leads to loneliness and weariness and even in the United States, at least 66 per cent of all divorced couples are childless.


Thursday, May 20, 2010


Texas (Listeni /ˈtɛksəs/) is the second-largest U.S. state in both area and population, and the largest state in the contiguous United States. The name, meaning "friends" or "allies" in Caddo, was applied by the Spanish to the Caddo themselves and to the region of their settlement in East Texas.[7] Located in the South Central United States, Texas is bordered by Mexico to the south, New Mexico to the west, Oklahoma to the north, Arkansas to the northeast, and Louisiana to the east. Texas has an area of 268,820 square miles (696,200 km2), and a growing population of 24.7 million residents.[8]

Houston is the largest city in Texas and the fourth-largest in the United States, while San Antonio is the seventh largest in the United States. Dallas–Fort Worth and Houston are the fourth and sixth largest United States metropolitan areas, respectively. Other major cities include San Antonio, El Paso, and Austin—the state capital. Texas is nicknamed the Lone Star State to signify Texas as an independent republic and as a reminder of the state's struggle for independence from Mexico. The "Lone Star" can be found on the Texas State Flag and on the Texas State Seal today.[9]

Due to its size and geologic features such as the Balcones Fault, Texas contains diverse landscapes that resemble both the American South and the Southwest.[10] Although Texas is popularly associated with the Southwestern deserts, less than 10% of the land area is desert.[11] Most of the population centers are located in areas of former prairies, grasslands, forests, and the coastline. Traveling from east to west, one can observe terrain that ranges from coastal swamps and piney woods, to rolling plains and rugged hills, and finally the desert and mountains of the Big Bend.

The term "six flags over Texas" came from the several nations that had ruled over the territory. Spain was the first European country to claim the area of Texas. France held a short-lived colony in Texas. Mexico controlled the territory until 1836 when Texas won its independence, becoming an independent Republic. In 1845 it joined the United States as the 28th state. The state's annexation set off a chain of events that caused the Mexican–American War in 1846. A slave state, Texas declared its secession from the United States in early 1861, joining the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War. After the war and its restoration to the Union, Texas entered a long period of economic stagnation.

One Texas industry that thrived after the Civil War was cattle. Due to its long history as a center of the industry, Texas is associated with the image of the cowboy. The state's economic fortunes changed in the early 1900s, when oil discoveries initiated an economic boom in the state. With strong investments in universities, Texas in the mid twentieth century developed a diversified economy, including many high tech industries. Today it has more Fortune 500 companies than any other U.S. state.[12][13] With a growing base of industry, the state leads in many industries, including agriculture, petrochemicals, energy, computers and electronics, aerospace, and biomedical sciences. It leads the nation in export revenue since 2002 and has the second-highest gross state product.


Sunday, May 16, 2010

Devil's Night

Devil's Night is a name associated with October 30, the night before Halloween. It is related to "mischief night" practiced in other parts of the United States and the world.


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Shmuel Yosef Agnon

Shmuel Yosef Agnon (Hebrew: שמואל יוסף עגנון, July 17, 1888 - February 17, 1970) was a Nobel Prize laureate writer and was one of the central figures of modern Hebrew fiction. In Hebrew, he is known by the acronym Shai Agnon, ש"י עגנון In English, his works are published under the name S. Y. Agnon.

Agnon was born in Galicia (today Ukraine), later immigrated to the British mandate of Palestine, and died in Jerusalem. His works deal with the conflict between the traditional Jewish life and language and the modern world. They also attempt to recapture the fading traditions of the European shtetl (village). In a wider context, he also contributed to broadening the characteristic conception of the narrator's role in literature. Agnon shared the Nobel Prize with the poet Nelly Sachs in 1966.


Abby Sciuto

Abigail "Abby" Sciuto (pronounced /ˈʃuːtoʊ/) is a fictional character from the NCIS television series by CBS Television, and is portrayed by Pauley Perrette. Abby was introduced in the episodes "Ice Queen" and "Meltdown" (which together served as the backdoor pilot for NCIS) in the television show JAG, and has appeared in every episode of NCIS, in addition to being featured on the show's spin-off, NCIS: Los Angeles.

Abby is a forensic specialist at the Naval Criminal Investigative Service headquarters at the Washington Naval Yard and demonstrates mastery in a large number of areas of criminalistics, including ballistics, digital forensics, and DNA analysis. Special Agent Tony DiNozzo describes her as "a paradox wrapped in an oxymoron smothered in contradictions in terms. Sleeps in a coffin. Really, the happiest goth you'll ever meet."[1] Her gothic style of dress and her interest in death and the supernatural enigmatically contrast with her generally hyperactive demeanor and enthusiasm about her work.


Jaromierz, Człuchów County

Jaromierz [jaˈrɔmjɛʂ] is a village in the administrative district of Gmina Człuchów, within Człuchów County, Pomeranian Voivodeship, in northern Poland.[1] It lies approximately 6 kilometres (4 mi) west of Człuchów and 120 km (75 mi) south-west of the regional capital Gdańsk.


Friday, May 14, 2010


What Is Allicin?
Allicin is the most powerful medicinal compound derived from garlic and provides the greatest reputed health benefits.

Allicin does not occur in "ordinary" garlic, it is produced when garlic is finely chopped or crushed. The finer the chopping and the more intensive the crushing, the more allicin is generated and the stronger the medicinal effect.

The technically minded might be interested in the chemistry of allicin.

As well as having antibiotic properties, allicin is an excellent anti-fungal and garlic preparations have been used in folk medicine to treat skin infections such as athlete's foot. Be cautious: too much contact with crushed garlic can result in skin blistering. You should also be aware that a few people are allergic to garlic. Garlic is powerful and needs to be treated with respect - see the warnings page.

Allicin starts to degrade immediately after it is produced, so its medical effectiveness decreases over time. Cooking speeds up this degradation and microwaving appears to destroy allicin totally and eliminate any health benefits.

So for the most powerful medicinal effect, crush a little raw garlic and combine with the cooked food shortly before serving. Don't overdo it - too much can produce irritation of and possibly even damage to the digestive tract. Remember too that raw, crushed garlic also has the most powerful flavour!

Before taking garlic or any other supplement, consult your doctor.

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Ginger has long been ascribed aphrodisiac powers, taken either internally or externally. It is mentioned in the Karma Sutra, and in the Melanesian Islands of the South Pacific it is employed ‘to gain the affection of a woman’. Conversely, in the Philippines it is chewed to expel evil spirits. Ginger is a known diaphoretic, meaning it causes one to sweat. It was recorded that Henry VIII instructed the mayor of London to use ginger’s diaphoretic qualities as a plague medicine.

Ginger is most commonly known for its effectiveness as a digestive aid. By increasing the production of digestive fluids and saliva, Ginger helps relieve indigestion, gas pains, diarrhea and stomach cramping. The primary known constituents of Ginger Root include gingerols, zingibain, bisabolenel, oleoresins, starch, essential oil (zingiberene, zingiberole, camphene, cineol, borneol), mucilage, and protein. Ginger root is also used to treat nausea related to both motion sickness and morning sickness. Ginger has been found to be even more effective than Dramamine® in curbing motion sickness, without causing drowsiness. Ginger's anti-inflammatory properties help relieve pain and reduce inflammation associated with arthritis, rheumatism and muscle spasms. Ginger's therapeutic properties effectively stimulate circulation of the blood, removing toxins from the body, cleansing the bowels and kidneys, and nourishing the skin. Other uses for Ginger Root include the treatment of asthma, bronchitis and other respiratory problems by loosening and expelling phlegm from the lungs. Ginger Root may also be used to help break fevers by warming the body and increasing perspiration.


Thursday, May 6, 2010

High-Pitched Women Prefer Deep-Voiced Men

Women with high-pitched voices apparently prefer deep-voiced, manly men, according to new research that sheds light on the rules of attraction.

Scientists research the features that make people attractive because these reveal what physical and mental qualities we favor, shedding light on what forces drive human evolution.

"People obviously prefer to marry and date people they consider attractive, but also are more likely to cooperate with attractive individuals, prefer to hire attractive people and even prefer to vote for those they think are attractive," said psychologist Benedict Jones at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. "So, by understanding the factors that influence attractiveness judgments, we're really getting insights into something that's one of the most powerful driving forces behind social interactions."

Intriguingly, past research has shown that women with high-pitched voices are not only thought of as sounding more attractive but often have faces others consider more attractive as well. Further studies revealed these voices in women are often linked with higher estrogen levels, perhaps serving as a cue to their health and fertility.

Straight women who are attractive, in terms of whether they have hourglass figures and how beautiful others deem their faces, typically show particularly strong preferences for men with masculine faces - those with larger jaws and heavier brows, for instance. Such manly traits could be linked with a man's health, and thus women might be unknowingly vying for potentially healthier offspring.

In fact, past research has shown that deep-voiced men have more kids.

This suggested that maybe soprano-voiced women preferred macho, deep-voiced men as well, in essence, pairing up the most feminine with the most masculine.

"Over the years, many philosophers have suggested that it's impossible to understand beauty and attraction, largely because beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder," Jones said. "Our recent work shows that, although it's certainly true that people often differ in the types of people that they find most attractive, these idiosyncratic tastes can, to some extent, be understood and even predicted."

To test their idea, Jones and his colleagues first measured the pitch of the voices of 113 female college students. They next listened to recordings of men saying either "I really like you" or "I really don't like you," and were asked how attractive they found them. The voices of these men were electronically modified to have either higher-pitched, more feminine voices, or lower-pitched, more masculine voices.

The volunteers preferred the lower-pitched voices regardless of what the men were saying. In addition, the 20 women with the highest-pitched voices preferred masculine voices nearly 20 percent more on average than the 20 women with the lowest-pitched voices.

"The findings suggest that women's own attractiveness in some way influences their preferences for masculine traits in men's voices," Jones said. "Effects like those in our study might simply reflect people finding their place in the mating market and taking that into account when judging others' attractiveness."

"What's a little bit surprising is that we see these types of effects in studies like ours where people are judging the attractiveness of people they will never meet, never mind attempt to enter into a relationship with," Jones told LiveScience. "Awareness of our own market value seems to be so entrenched that we take it into account even in situations where we really don't necessarily need to."

An interesting direction for further research could be whether or not women with high-pitched voices actually enter into relationships with deep-voiced men.

"Is it an effect that's specific to attractiveness judgments, or does it also shape our decisions about who we enter into relationships with?" Jones wondered.

Also, instead of just using static pictures or altered voice recordings, "I'd be keen in the future to alter the appearance and vocal characteristics of videos of people in order to investigate how people combine visual and auditory cues when judging others' attractiveness," he added.

The scientists detailed their findings online April 23 in the journal Behavioral Ecology.