Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Take 5 Minutes to Help a Science Fair Project

Help high school student Matthew Rongey by participating as a subject in his science fair project at sciproj.yes2.us. If you agree to take part in this experiment, you will be shown a short 2.5 minute video. After the video, you will be asked a series of questions pertaining to the video and regarding demographic information. All the details are on Matthew's site.

If you'd like to help other students with science fair projects, go to www.sciencebuddies.org

Tuesday, January 24, 2006


Architects and engineers compete to see whose team can build the most spectacular structure using little more than cans of food at Construction, the annual Design and Build competition in New York and other cities. Best Meal, Best Use of Labels, Structural Ingenuity and Jurors’ Favorite. At the end of each competition, the more than 100,000 cans that are part of the exhibit are given to the Second Harvest Food Bank. For details and pictures, visit www.canstruction.org/

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Where's George?

I recently got a dollar bill, stamped in red ink with the words, "Track this bill at www.WheresGeorge.com"

The WheresGeorge website lets you enter the serial number of the bill to see where it has been. Unfortunately, I was only the second stop for my bill, so it wasn't too interesting - but some bills on the site have criss-crossed the country (there's a view that shows the path on a map). Check the top ten menu to see the most interesting bills. Cute idea...

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Need a Break?

If you've ever spent a mindless half-half hour watching one of those home video shows on TV, you'll enjoy break.com. People post homemade videos, which you can rate and comment on.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Thanks PG&E

El Cotoro spent a cold and dreary New Years day this year, thanks to a fallen branch that brought down a power wire. Our neighborhood - 165 houses - was without power for a day and a half.

A day and a half is not a long time, but it was long enough for us to transfer our "most perishable" food from the refrigerator to a cooler packed with ice. Long enough for us to experience "Internet withdrawal." Long enough for us to spend an evening huddled in front of a fire to keep warm. Long enough for us to wrap our tropical fish tank with blankets and hot water bottles to keep the fish alive. Long enough for us to appreciate (and play with) those fancy LED flashlights in our emergency kit. Long enough to realize that reading by candlelight (or even LED light) is not easy.

A day and a half is not a long time, and many people went through much, much worse over the past year. Still, it gave me a greater appreciation for the thousands of people who gave up their holidays to work, nonstop, in cold wet weather in order to restore basic services to their community.

Thanks, PG&E!