A Change Of Pace

Mullet Over
Only one jockey has won the Triple Crown twice

By James K. White | January 7, 2009

Have you sent some flowers using the FTD company? FTD stood for Florists’ Telegraph Delivery and was created in 1910 by a group of florists wishing to serve distant customers.

The company has grown to have more than 50,000 distribution centers in 154 countries. Even what FTD stands for has changed – Florists’ Transworld Delivery.

Master architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe hated the way skyscrapers looked when tenants left the window blind slats in many stages of closure. He invented a new blind that can be left in only three positions: drawn, half drawn and fully open.

Photographer Robert Capa risked his life to expose four rolls of film during the heaviest action on D-Day on Normandy Beach (June 6, 1944). Robert barely escaped with his life, but managed to get the films back to the development lab. Oops. The lab assistant accidentally ruined all but 11 frame exposures. Well, darn.

The once endangered bald eagle has made a remarkable recovery as has the whooping crane and American peregrine falcon. However, as of 2006 the West African Black Rhino has been listed as officially extinct.

Nigeria has 132 million people and more than 200 ethnic groups speaking more than 500 dialects which might explain the confusion on which city is the capital of the country. Since 1991 the official capital is supposedly Abuja, but many officials still recognize Lagos and confusingly conduct government business in both cities. To add to the fun, one should be aware that the country of Niger is totally separate from Nigeria and has its own set of cities and peculiarities.

A group of cats may properly be called a “clowder.”

The 25th anniversary is called the silver anniversary. Okay, most knew that bit of information, but were you aware that the 9th year is termed the “pottery” anniversary?
Only one jockey has won the coveted Triple Crown twice. That talented rider would be Eddie Arcaro. He victoriously rode Whirlaway (1941) and Citation (1948).

It is commonly remembered that John Wilkes Booth assassinated Abraham Lincoln (1865). However, few recall that Leon Czolgosz assassinated President William McKinley (1901).

The Dead Sea is located in Jordan at 1,379 feet below sea level. More than one scientist has predicted that the Dead Sea will completely dry up by the year 2060. There is even a plan to save the Dead Sea by digging a canal 100 miles long connecting it to the Red Sea. There are several problems with the plan. For instance the nations in the Israel-Jordan area do not seem to cooperate well and the Red Sea is approximately 1300 feet higher than the Dead Sea. Fiddle-Dee-Dee, details, details.

Well, be kind to clowders and have a swell (different from “swollen) week.


Understanding Engineers

Understanding Engineers - One:
Two engineering students were walking across a university campus when one said, “Where did you get such a great bike?”
The second engineer replied, “Well, I was walking along yesterday, minding my own business, when a beautiful woman rode up on this bike, threw it to the ground, took off all her clothes and said, 'Take what you want.’”
The first engineer nodded approvingly and said, “Good choice; the clothes probably wouldn't have fit you anyway.”

Understanding Engineers – Two:
To the optimist, the glass is half full. To the pessimist, the glass is half empty. To the engineer, the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

Understanding Engineers – Three:
A priest, a doctor, and an engineer were waiting for a particularly slow group of golfers. The engineer fumed, “What's with those guys? We must have been waiting for fifteen minutes!”
The doctor chimed in, “I don't know, but I've never seen such inept golf!”
The priest said, “Here comes the green-keeper. Let's have a word with him.” He said, “Hello George, what's wrong with that group ahead of us? They're rather slow, aren't they?”
The green-keeper replied, “Oh, yes. That's a group of blind firemen. They lost their sight saving our clubhouse from a fire last year, so we always let them play for free anytime.”
The group fell silent for a moment. The priest said, “That's so sad. I think I will say a special prayer for them tonight.”
The doctor said, “Good idea. I'm going to contact my ophthalmologist colleague and see if there's anything he can do for them.”
The engineer said, “Why can't they play at night?”

Understanding Engineers – Four:
What is the difference between mechanical engineers and civil engineers?
Mechanical engineers build weapons and civil engineers build targets.

Understanding Engineers – Five:
The graduate with a science degree asks, "Why does it work?”
The graduate with an engineering degree asks, “How does it work?”
The graduate with an accounting degree asks, “How much will it cost?”
The graduate with an arts degree asks, “Do you want fries with that?”

Understanding Engineers – Six:
Three engineering students were gathered together discussing who must have designed the human body. One said, “It was a mechanical engineer. Just look at all the joints.”
Another said, “No, it was an electrical engineer. The nervous system has many thousands of electrical connections.”
The last one said, “No, actually it had to have been a civil engineer. Who else would run a toxic waste pipeline through a recreational area?”

Understanding Engineers – Seven:
Normal people believe that if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Engineers believe that if it ain't broke, it doesn't have enough features yet.

Understanding Engineers – Eight:
An engineer was crossing a road one day, when a frog called out to him and said, “If you kiss me, I'll turn into a beautiful princess.” He bent over, picked up the frog and put it in his pocket.
The frog spoke up again and said, “If you kiss me I'll turn back into a beautiful princess and stay with you for one week.” The engineer took the frog out of his pocket and smiled at it.
The frog then cried out, “If you kiss me and turn me back into a princess, I'll stay with you for one week and do ANYTHING you want.” Again, the engineer smiled at the frog.
Finally, the frog asked, “What is the matter? I've told you I'm a beautiful princess and that I'll stay with you for one week and do anything you want. Why won't you kiss me?” The engineer said, “Look, I'm an engineer. I don't have time for a girlfriend, but a talking frog, now that's cool.”