Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Cheese balls were originally made out of livestock feed (and free stuff)

Cheese balls, cheese curls and other cheese puff snack foods were invented at a factory that made flaked food for livestock. No, I'm not talking about party cheese balls or MTV True Life "where are my cheeseballssssss?", I'm talking about old fashioned processed snack food cheese balls (you know, round, bright orange, puffs of "cheese" -- You've seen them in the supermarket, next to the industrial sized barrels of "party mix").

One day, around 1930 or so, Edward Wilson, a flake machine operator at the Flakall Company noticed that when the flaked food was mixed with water and heated it created a puffy curl of corn. He took the puffs and added oil and flavorings -- thus creating the first cheese puff. Now there are many kinds of processed puffed corn cheese snacks, and it is estimated that 82% of Americans with families have consumed some kind of cheese puff.

Come back!

Planter's Cheez Balls were so popular that a petition was formed when they were taken off the market to bring them back (sign it here, I dare you).

Ever wanted your own barrel of cheese balls but just couldn't make the commitment to eat the the...um... how many balls are in one of those things? That's where I need some help (giving away free stuff). Check out the below photo...

Click and image will enlarge

if you can guess how may cheese balls are in the barrel (estimate based on nutrition label - the barrel will remain sealed) you win...

...drum roll please...

... the barrel of cheese puffs! Yes. Really. No lie.

A few rules:
  • Post your guess in the comments section below
  • Include your e-mail address (anti-robot style)
  • Closest price wins, go over and you loose
  • All entries must be in by 11:59 p.m. EST on Monday, April 6 - winner will be posted the following Tuesday
  • Runner ups will receive certificates of participation (looks good cube - certificates have a way of making the smallest desk seem a like a corner office)
  • No double guesses, first come first serve

Ready, set, say cheese balls!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Thank God for Post-it® Notes

Sorry Michelle, the adhesive for 3M Post-it® Notes was developed in 1968 by Dr. Spencer Silver (genius) it was not combined with paper to create the wonderful Post-it® Note until fellow 3M scientist Art Fry (another genius) came along. Fry came up with the practical use for the re positionable adhesive when trying to keep a bookmark stuck in his hymnal. Thanks to Art Fry's need to keep his place in church, Post-it® Notes were born.

Post-it® Notes were launched in 1977, but did not go national until 1980. Post-it® Notes were produced exclusively by 3M until 1990 when their patent ran out. They are now produced by other companies under the name of "sticky" or "re positional" notes.

I personally LOVE the little yellow squares. I might be my office's number one user (I had a great cube of bright yellow notes that was given to me by our ULINE rep...but it recently vanished).

Besides the obvious posting of a note, there are many uses for re positional notes including:
  • Marking you place in a book
  • Cutting off the sticky part to use as tape
  • Placing the note sticky side into your keyboard to clean between keys
  • And last but not least, vandalizing a co-worker's cube...

For more information on Post-it® Notes visit Post-it.com.

Thanks to the individual who post-ited my cube for inspiring this post. Readers, any ideas for payback?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Irish you all a very happy St. Patrick's Day!

Friday, March 13, 2009

People who fear Friday the 13th suffer from Paraskavedekatriaphobia

People who fear Friday the 13th suffer from Paraskavedekatriaphobia (I am one of them...I am very superstitious). The word is made up of three Greek words, Paraskeví ( Friday), dekatreís (thirteen), and phobía (fear). An individual who is unhappy with today's date may also suffer from triskaidekaphobia, a fear of the number 13.

This Friday the 13th has already gotten off to a bad start, (we got lost three times on the way home from the Bacon Brothers concert at Hard Rock Cafe Times Square -- how is that even possible?) making my case of paraskavedekatriaphobia even worse.

The next Friday the 13th will occur on November 13, 2009. For those who suffer from paraskavedekatriaphobia, 2009 is a terrible year with three occurances of the unlucky day. Never fear, there is only one Friday the 13th in August of 2010, so rest easy till then.

Thanks to Katie for bringing this information to my attention.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Smart people know you need body fat to survive (and it could also get you free stuff)

You need body fat to survive. Essential body fat is 2–5% in men, and 10–13% in women. Women need more body fat than men in order to bear children and create hormones, so the minimum for females is higher than males. This minimum balance is needed to keep your organs from smacking into each other like bumper cars and insulates your body.

There are many body fat percentage charts available. I liked this one the best.

You can calculate your body fat percentage by visiting a physical fitness professional, or by clicking here.

Why do I know all this? Well, today I joined...

Yes! I am in my office's fitness challenge! Why? I eat rather terribly and sporadically, consuming a diet of mostly Cheez-its and Diet Coke, that is, when I remember to go food shopping. Oh yes. I am terrible to my poor body. Hopefully this will inspire me to be a little nicer to it (and ensure I look super fabulous for my upcoming Dominican vacay!!!). Fifty-two of us have embarked upon this challenge, most body fat percentage per team wins. From now until June 2, we will work hard, dieting and exercising ourselves to better health.

So I guess that means I shouldn't have ordered three boxes of Girl Scout Cookies!!

Good thing for all of you, I LOVE giving away FREE STUFF! Yes! I am going to give them away!!! Here's the deal. I'm going to put myself on a limb... in order to win my cookies (when they arrive), you've got to guess my body fat percentage. Below is a recent picture for reference.

This is not about weight, it is about body fat percentage which can be very deceiving. There were some very slender people in my office who had rather high percentages, and some not so tiny people whose percentages were rather low. Hopefully this will be educational and maybe inspire you to find your own body fat percentage, become healthier, happier, more productive and make the world a better place. Baby steps.

My fellow weight loss challengers, I have not forgotten about you! If one of you guesses correctly, you will receive a fitness evaluation from Seton Hall University Fitness Center expert Kofi Polley (who is so fit he was refused entry in the contest, which means he must know what he is doing).

Here is how it works (yes, there are always rules and yes, you must follow them):
  • Guess my body fat percentage with one decimal point, example - 1.o% (haha right, I'd be dead or extremely uncomfortable)
  • No repeats
  • Inappropriate comments will be deleted
  • Enter in the comment section below with a valid e-mail address in anti robot format, i.e. lila AT gmail DOT com
  • Price is Right rules (Mr. Maven) closest guess without going over wins
  • Entries will be accepted until 11:59 PM on Monday, March 16th. Prizes will be awarded the following Tuesday
Are you a fitness guru? Got any body fat shedding tips? Include a helpful tip with your entry and you can guess TWICE!

Ok. Ready, set ... go!

A big thanks to Miss Crissy Lopez for organizing this challenge, and Mr. Kofi Polley for donating his most valuable time.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

A sound of 180 decibels will kill your ears

Literally. Sounds of 150 decibels would cause your chest wall to vibrate (maybe turn down the volume). At 160 decibels, your eardrums would break instantly (ouch). A sound of 180 decibels would cause fatal damage to the tissue of your ears (not fun).

A jet engine ranks around 140 decibels, so as long as you don't spend all day with your head next to a 747 you should be spared from this kind of damage. However, frequent exposure to sounds at lower decibels can cause damage to your ears. For a chart of decibel levels, click here.

According to DangerousDecibels.org, 5.2 million 6-19 year olds have hearing loss directly related to noise exposure and more than 30 million Americans are exposed to hazardous sound levels on a regular basis. These sounds include loud music, power tools, heavy machinery, and the sound of Coyne PR winning Midsized Agency of the Year...

YAY! Congrats Coyne!

For more videos from Coyne visit the Coyne YouTube Channel.

Friday, March 6, 2009

And the winner is...or should I say, actual retail price is...

Nine dollars and fifty-eight cents! Making the "first St. Patrick's Day parade" contest's winner Snake Child with an estimate of $10.25!! Yay! Snake Child will be the recipient of a lovely St. Patty's Day prize pack!!!

Coming in close second was Amelia, with $8.76.

Third place goes to Shana Bananas with $8.22.

Honorable mention to das boot for a guess of $11.23.

All winners will receive certificates of participation. How awesome are you?!?!

To the rest of you, thank you for your participation!!! A very merry St. Patty's day to you all!