5 Things I Never Knew Until Last Week

If, as the saying goes, a person learns something new every day, then this post should rightfully be titled “7 Things I Never Knew Until Last Week.” Perhaps I did learn seven, but only five come to mind and it seems a good enough number, easy to multiply as well as Hanna’s favorite numeral. When she was a little girl, Hanna used to sneak an extra item into the grocery cart if I were buying four. Come to think of it, she still does.

In no particular order, the top 5 things I never knew until last week:

1. April 10 is National Siblings Day

According to Wikipedia, 2013 marks the 14th celebration of National Siblings Day. That means the first one took place back in 2000, although I do not remember hearing about it until the explosion of Facebook posts and Twitter tweets last week. Claudia Evart wishes to honor her late brother and sister by achieving federal recognition of the day, like Mothers and Fathers Days.

Happy Belated National Siblings Day to Mark, Susie and John. Love you guys!
A belated Happy National Siblings Day to Mark, Susie and John. Love you guys!

2. The Louisville basketball team is a hotbed of Christianity

Last Monday night I was multitasking as I awaited tip-off of the NCAA championship game. I don’t remember whether I was checking my e-mail or finishing up a Scrabble game as a prerecorded introduction of the Louisville starting five played. I vaguely heard athletes announce that they played for their family or for grandma or school spirit or whatnot, when Peyton Siva’s statement made me sit up and take notice: “I play for my Lord.”

Wow. I wasn’t quite sure if I had heard correctly, but later in the game as he prepared for a free throw attempt, one of the announcers remarked that Siva wears jersey number 3 to honor the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Double Wow. And after the game, when asked about his role in the Louisville basketball program, Siva responded,”First off, I got to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, for blessing us for this opportunity. I thank God, and without my teammates, without my parents, my girlfriend over there, my sisters, my brothers, none of this would be possible. I’m just thankful to God.” Triple WOW.

Siva is not alone in his faith. Final four MVP Luke Hancock prayed with Kevin Ware as his teammate lay in shock with a compound fracture earlier in the tournament. Ware himself, when asked about the secret of Louisville’s success, answered “We are brothers, and brothers glorify the Word.”

How refreshing: role models who have their priorities straight.

3. A fender dent can be repaired with a hair dryer and compressed air

It warmed up enough early last week to address some hit-and-run parking lot paint scuffs left on both front fenders of my Subaru. I read online that WD-40 would clean them. While I had no luck with WD-40, I learned that rubbing alcohol applied with sufficient elbow grease will do the trick. I’m not certain if one of the scuffs was more recent than the other, or if the offending vehicles had different types of paint, or if one side was hit a little harder, but the driver side was a lot easier to clean than the passenger side.

I favor the theory that the passenger side was hit with more force, because there is also a dent on that side. It’s very slight and only noticeable when the light hits it a certain way, but it bugs me to know that it is there. I heard about DIY dent repair using a plunger and ran a YouTube search. Turns out there are all kinds of options involving not only plungers but magnets, popcorn and specialty suction gadgets. I think the most intriguing approach utilizes a hair dryer and compressed air.

I haven’t tried this yet, but I am going to when it warms up again. I hope to enjoy a result like this:

4. Hell is in the Inbox

In the roughly seven and a half months that I have been posting to this weblog, I have received more than a thousand comments. I approve only the pertinent ones, of which there have been a whopping 17.

The rest have been either spam or seem to address some other unrelated weblog. There was a series thanking me for beautiful wedding photography, another bunch wishing Tim and me every happiness in our marriage. My favorite accused me of thinking I could just post a random picture with a line of text and pass it off as a weblog (this was on a post with no pictures). I got that one twice.

Non-pertinent comments seem to come in waves and without rhyme or reason. Sometimes there are even comments to individual photos rather than posts. I usually let them build up a while and then do a bulk spam report. There was a bit of a lull earlier this month, but last week comments skyrocketed. I received nearly 200, most of them linked to my book review of David Shannon’s Hell in the Head.

When I told Dave about the onslaught, he theorized that it was due to the title of his book, and pointed out that there was a heavy metal song with a similar title (perhaps I Am Hell by the Machine Heads?). Since my post on Day of the Dead was currently running a distant second, I think he may be onto something. I disabled comments for those two posts and the comments slowed to their usual pace.

5. There exists a kitchen gadget specifically for slicing bananas

For a reason known only to its marketing programmers, Amazon.com decided that I might be interested in this item. Interested is an understatement; the Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer is nothing short of fascinating. To think that for years I have settled for using a knife to slice bananas! If you do not find this gadget funny in itself, be sure to look through the gallery of customer images and read the customer reviews.


Now that I have looked at the banana slicer, Amazon thinks I might also be interested in a strawberry core remover, stainless pineapple slicer with wedger, one-step corn kerneler (I already have the corn-on-the-cob butter holder) or perhaps even a $300 onion slicer.

I think I’ll just stick with a knife. Good thing Laura got me a hot pink leopard print one for my last birthday.


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