Posts filed under ‘Food and Drink’

Why Bars Put Ice in the Urinals

Ladies probably don’t know this, but the urinals in men’s bathrooms, usually at bars or clubs, sometimes have ice in them.

ice in urinal

Even though many men have seen this, they don’t usually know why it’s there.

Well, auto flush exists because some people don’t flush. Urinal cakes exist because some people don’t flush. So of course, ice exists in urinals because some people don’t flush. (more…)

July 31, 2013 at 2:00 am 42 comments

Chocolate Can Improve Blood Flow and Brain Function

By Chad Upton

The Kuna Indians of the Panama Islands consume large quantities of cocoa, even when compared to those living on mainland Panama.

cocoavia

A study by Norman K Hollenberg, MD and PhD of Harvard Medical School, found that the islanders have astonishingly low occurrences of hypertension and cardiovascular disease. In fact, death from heart disease is a 1280% higher risk for mainlanders. What is in the chocolate the islanders are consuming? (more…)

May 24, 2013 at 2:00 am 1 comment

Bananas Emit Antimatter Almost Every 75 Minutes

By Chad Upton

Potassium-40 is a fairly unstable isotope, although the half life is nearly a billion years.

Because bananas have so much of this isotope, there is enough decay to generate one positron (approximately) every 75 minutes.

bananas

A positron is basically the opposite of an electron. It has the same mass as an electron, but a positive charge instead of a negative one. It is the electron’s antimatter doppelgänger.

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photo: keepon (cc)

sources: tertiarysource.net, wikipedia (positron, gamma ray)

April 23, 2013 at 11:09 pm 15 comments

Kosher Coke Contains Real Sugar

By Chad Upton | Editor

In many countries, Coca-Cola and most other soft drinks, are sweetened with High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). This is not real sugar from cane or beets, it is a processed sweetener made from corn that is almost identical to natural sugar.

There have been some debates and studies about whether or not HFCS is bad for us. Without getting into it, I will say that some people don’t have a problem eating HFCS and other people do.

The reasons for avoiding HFCS vary widely and one of them has led to Kosher Coke. Because high fructose corn syrup is made from corn (a grain) it cannot be consumed by (Orthodox) Ashkenazi Jews who refrain from eating grains during passover.

You can spot Kosher Coke by the yellow cap on the bottle (white in Chicago). It typically has a Kosher certification symbol and sometimes Hebrew characters. If you live near Cleveland  the local bottler never switched to HFCS, so check the ingredients — your Coke might be perma-Kosher. (more…)

March 8, 2013 at 1:00 pm 14 comments

Vanilla is an Addictive Stimulant

By Chad Upton | Editor

Vanilla is often associated with plain, boring and ordinary; however, vanilla is anything but vanilla.

Now, it’s hardly the kind of thing you’d find shady characters dealing on a dark street corner. In fact, it’s not the kind of thing you’d likely find anywhere — I mean, good luck finding Grade A Tahitian Vanilla Beans in most cities. If you do find them, you’re looking at $5 or more for a single bean.

vanilla bean

Beans of such high quality are typically sought by epicureans, but there’s more to vanilla than its taste. (more…)

December 12, 2012 at 2:00 am 5 comments

Party Cup Ridges are Measurement Markings

By Chad Upton | Editor

Now that college is back in session, it’s time to learn something really useful. Party cups aren’t just for playing beer pong and flippy cups; some people use them exclusively for serving drinks. They’re great for cash bars and beer pong for the same reason: the ridges can be used to measure servings.

Starting at the top, the lines are as follows:

  • First Line: 16 oz / Pint (beer)
  • Second Line: 14 ounces (mixed drink fill line)
  • Third Line: 5 ounces (wine / ice fill line for soda / beer pong fill line)
  • Fourth Line: 1 ounce (liquor)

Most of these measurements are pretty common serving sizes for various types of alcohol. For example, 1 oz of 100 proof liquor has about the same alcohol as 5 oz of wine and each are considered “1 drink”. For beer, 10 – 12 ounces is considered 1 drink, but a pint is a typical serving size no less. (more…)

September 8, 2012 at 10:06 am 1 comment

There is a Beer Pipeline

By Chad Upton | Editor

Although aqueducts were used as far back as the 7th century BC, the first known “pipeline” was built in 1595 to carry salt water. At 40 km (25 miles) in length, it was made from 13,000 hollowed tree trunks.

Today, some of our most valuable resources are carried by pipeline: water, oil, natural gas, and even beer. Yes, there is a beer pipeline. Actually, there are at least two beer pipelines. (more…)

April 26, 2012 at 2:00 am 12 comments

Mason Jars Can Be Used as Mini Blender Jars

By Chad Upton | Editor

Perhaps this is why they call them “Blender Jars” — the thread on the bottom of the jar is the same as a mason jar. That means you can remove the blade assembly from your large blender jar and attach it to a mason jar for small recipes, quick smoothies, baby food, etc.

If you’ve already got a blender, that’s just a few dollars in mason jars. Otherwise, you could shell out $50 for a magic bullet:

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February 28, 2012 at 6:00 am 17 comments

Square Watermelons are Smarter Than Round Ones

By Chad Upton | Editor

How much is your fridge space worth?

Traditional watermelons take up a lot of space in your fridge. So, farmers in Japan came up with a way to grow square watermelons.

Square watermelons are a better use of space in your fridge and during shipping. When you pack them together there isn’t as much “empty” space in the corners. They’re also more convenient because they don’t roll over, they stand on their own.

From a practical standpoint, they’re definitely better. But, are they worth the money? In Japan, they go for the equivalent of about $82 USD. These watermelons are available in some US specialty grocery shops as well. These Panama imports are going for $75 and up.

If you want square watermelons without the obtuse price, you might consider growing your own. You can do it just like the Japanese farmers if you pickup a polycarbonate mold to grow them in. Basically, you fit the case around the watermelon as it starts growing and the watermelon grows to fill the shape of the case. The case runs for about $110 USD, but you can use it to grow many watermelons. Once you’ve grown two, you’ve more than paid for it.

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Photo: solution_63 (cc)

Sources: CNN, slashfood, snopes, square-watermelons.com

November 16, 2011 at 2:00 am 1 comment

Syrah and Shiraz are the Same Grape

By Chad Upton | Editor

There are thousands of grape varieties out there. You’ll find a couple of them in the grocery store and another fraction of them in wine making.

Casual wine drinkers might be able to name a couple dozen grape varieties used for wine, but two of the most common are actually the same grape: Syrah and Shiraz.

Why have two names for the same thing?

(more…)

November 4, 2011 at 2:00 am 4 comments

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