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May 6, 2010

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ISSUE #12

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GONE FISHING by Rick Dandes There is an old and wise Chinese proverb that says, “If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fish-ing.â€? For anglers, nothing more need be said. This week, Tidbits casts a long look at one of life’s great pleasures: fishing. • It’s one of the best fishing spots in the world: Port Loring in the Almaguin Highlands in Ontario, Canada. If you go there, expect to find species like small mouth bass, large mouth bass and northern pike. There is a series of lakes giving fishermen 100 miles of shoreline with great fishing spots. • Fishing for small mouth bass? Most experts advise that if possible, always cast up-stream. This gives the bait a natural appear-ance, plus it will come from a direction that the bass are expecting. When you bring your lure by a fallen tree or a little pocket on the down side of a rock, you’ve put “foodâ€? ex-actly where the fish are waiting for a meal. In most cases, they’ll grab it before it gets by them. • What may be the largest fish ever hooked and landed in America is described in a book, “Fishes and Fishing in Louisiana,â€? by James Gowanloch (1933). Gowanloch tells how Captain Jay Gould captured a manta ray that measured 19 feet, 9 inches (6 meters) from

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May 6, 2010

New DVDs reviewed in this column will be available in stores the week of May 18, 2010.

PICKS OF THE WEEK “Invictus” (PG-13) -- Morgan Freeman stars as Nelson Mandela in this Clint Eastwood-directed look at the racially charged 1995 Rugby World Cup. Mandela had just recently been elected president of South Africa, and racial tensions (and the threat of civil war) loom large. Mandela hopes that the matches featuring his country’s racially mixed team will act as an example that whites and blacks can work together. Matt Damon co-stars as Franois Pienaar, the captain of the team, who must lead his players in the championship match against the highly favored New Zealand squad. “Invictus” is no “Million Dollar Baby,” but it’s still an Eastwood flick, so it’s well worth a look. “Extraordinary Measures” (PG) -- Harrison Ford stars as research doctor Robert Stonehill in this production that teeters awfully close to being a made-for-Lifetime TV disease of the week disaster. Stonehill has an experimental treatment that may save the lives of two terminally ill children. Brendan Fraser and Keri Russell co-star as the parents of the children who go to Extraordinary Measures to raise the money needed to support Stonehill’s research. If you’re looking for a cheap tearjerker, then look no further, Mr. Weepy Pants.

The Spy Next Door (PG) -- Jackie Chan stars as a Chinese secret agent “on loan” to the CIA (stay with me, it gets dumber) who wants to give up the spy game in order to have a relationship with the single mom (Amber Valletta) who lives next door. When one of her kids accidentally grabs a super secret file from Chan’s computer, Chan has to protect them from evil Russian agents. Billy Ray Cyrus and George Lopez co-star ... so, you know, Quality Comedy Backup, am I right? I’m just gonna say this right now, ‘cuz it has to be said: Jackie Chan needs to stop making action movies. It’s becoming painful and embarrassing to watch. He’s just too old. How old is Jackie? He knew General Tso before he became famous for his chicken. That’s how old he is. There. I feel better now.

TOP TEN VIDEO, DVD as of May 1, 2010

DOG OF THE WEEK “Valentine’s Day” (PG-13) -- Director Garry Marshall assembles an all-star cast featuring Julia Roberts, Anne Hathaway, Jessica Biel and Jessica Alba and then wastes their talents to make possibly the worst romantic comedy in the history of romcoms. The film is a rapid-fire series of vignettes of various couples spanning different target demographics in the hopes that someone somewhere will actually care about this lukewarm rehash of every chick-flick cliche in the book. Seriously, if your Significant Other makes you watch this turkey, make him or her your Insignificant Other and walk away from the relationship.

1. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel (PG) (20th Century Fox) 2. Sherlock Holmes (PG-13) (Warner) 3. The Blind Side (PG-13) (Warner) 4. The Twilight Saga: New Moon (PG-13) (Summit) 5. The Princess and the Frog (G) (Buena Vista) 6. The Lord of the Rings: The Motion Picture Trilogy (Blu-Ray) (PG-13) (Warner) 7. Alice in Wonderland (G) (Buena Vista) 8. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (R) (First Look) 9. 2012 (PG-13) (Sony) 10. The Collector (NR) (Genius Productions)

TOP 10 VIDEO RENTALS

1. Sherlock Holmes (PG-13) Robert Downey Jr. 2. The Men Who Stare at Goats (R) George Clooney 3. The Blind Side (PG-13) Sandra Bullock 4. 2012 (PG-13) John Cusack 5. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (R) Nicolas Cage 6. The Twilight Saga: New Moon (PG-13) Kristen Stewart 7. Up in the Air (R) George Clooney 8. Brothers (R) Jake Gyllenhaal 9. Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel (PG) Jason Lee 10. Couples Retreat (PG-13) Vince Vaughn

TOP 10 DVD SALES

TOP TEN MOVIES

1. How to Train Your Dragon (PG) animated 2. The Back-up Plan (PG-13) Jennifer Lopez, Alex O’Loughlin 3. Date Night (PG-13) Steve Carell, Tina Fey 4. The Losers (PG-13) Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Zoe Saldana 5. Kick-Ass (R) Aaron Johnson, Nicolas Cage 6. Clash of the Titans (PG-13) Sam Worthington, Gemma Arterton 7. Death at a Funeral (R) Chris Rock, Martin Lawrence 8. Oceans (G) Pierce Brosnan (narrator) 9. The Last Song (PG) Miley Cyrus, Liam Hemsworth 10. Alice in Wonderland (PG) Johnny Depp, Mia Wasikowska


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GONE FISHING (continued):

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wing-tip to wing-tip. Even more amazing: The manta ray’s weight was estimated at a hefty 5,500 pounds (2,395 kilograms). • Bet you were upset the last time you snagged and lost a $5 or $10 (U.S.) fishing lure. Imagine then how you might feel if you used a Million Dollar Lure from MacDaddy Fishing Lures. This 12-inch (30.5 centime-ters) trolling lure, designed to catch marlin, is crafted with just over 3 pounds (1.4 kg) of glimmering gold and platinum and encrusted with 100 carats of diamonds and rubies (4,753 stones to be exact). Cost? Just as the name says — a cool $1 million (U.S.). • Casting call: In July 1999, Brent Olgers of Macon, Ga., established a world record for the longest period of consecutive casting. Using a Zebco 33 Classic reel, Olgers cast 6,501 times in just over 24 hours, averaging 270 casts per hour. Each cast had to be at least 45 feet (13.7 m) in length. • Best prize for a record fish happened in March 2006, during the Texas Carp Chal-lenge. That’s when angler Al St. Cyr landed a 43.13-pound (19.6 kilogram), state-record common carp in Austin’s Town Lake. That fish earned St. Cyr a $250,000 (U.S.) payday from the American Carp Society, the largest prize ever for a carp fisherman in the United States. • The eyes have it: Why do bass often strike a lure right after being released and not re-member it? Because a bass has two memory centers, one for each eye. For example, the first time a bass hits your lure he sees it with his right eye; if he hits it again right away, more than likely he saw it with the left eye.

• King salmon, or Chinook salmon, are the largest of the Alaska salmon, typically 25-50 lbs. (11.3-22.7 kg). The world-record King salmon was caught on the Kenai River, in Alaska. It weighed 97 lbs. 4 oz (44.1 kg). • Man’s interest in the yellowfin tuna is an ancient one. Research on the tuna’s migration, feeding and spawning practices began in the sixth century B.C. by Greek fishermen who prized their delicate flesh. • The oldest known painting of a fisherman using a rod is from Egypt and dated at about 2000 B.C. Claudius Aelian (170-235 AD), a Roman author and teacher, mentions trout fishing with artificial flies with hooks in Ma-cedonia. Fly-fishing has been around for more than 2,000 years. There is even evi-dence of the use of flies tied on bone hooks as early as 1400 B.C. in Egypt.

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By Samantha Weaver ¥ It was American poet, etymologist and translator John Ciardi who made the following sage observation: “The Constitution gives every American the inalienable right to make a damn fool of himself.” He was, evidently, also a shrewd observer of people. ¥ Between 1997 and 2003, the number of 9- to 12-year-olds who spent time outdoors hiking, fishing or camping fell by 50 percent. ¥ Greece’s Parthenon is a famous ruin, but many people today don’t realize that it wasn’t time that caused the destruction of the structure. In 1687, the Ottoman Turks occupied the Acropolis and used the Parthenon to store gunpowder. A mortar fired by the attacking Venetians hit the building and ignited the gunpowder, causing much of the widespread damage we see today. ¥ Although Portuguese is the official language of Brazil, those who study such things say that there are 170 languages spoken in that country, most of them known well only by the indigenous people who grew up speaking them. ¥ When city officials in New Orleans are estimating the crowds that turn out for Mardi Gras, they use the sanitation department’s figures on how much garbage was removed during the festival. ¥ It was famed fashion designer Coco Chanel who made the little black dress a popular item; before that, most women wore black only when they were in mourning. ¥ England’s King Richard I, known popularly as the Lionheart, didn’t actually live in England; his residence was in Aquitaine, in the southwestern part of France. He didn’t speak English, either. ¥ The next time you’re at a dance in Utah, remember not to get too close to your partner; in that state, by law, daylight must be visible between partners.

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May 6, 2010

To Advertise Call: 208-704-9972 LED ZEPPELIN This super rock group sold out stadiums around the world in the 1970s and 1980s and influences rock ‘n roll bands to this day. They also sold a mother lode of records and composed rock an-thems that will never be forgotten. So sit back, read and take that “Stairway to Heaven” with us. • Led Zeppelin sold more than 300 million al-bums worldwide, including 111.5 million sold in the United States. • All of the band’s original studio albums were top 10 sellers; six albums hit number one. • Rolling Stone magazine described Led Zep-pelin as “the heaviest band of all time” and “the biggest band of the 1970s.” • The band’s signature tune, “Stairway to Heaven,” has been covered by more than 100 artists, including Tiny Tim, Frank Zappa, Dolly Parton, Elkie Brooks, Pat Boone and the London Symphony Orchestra. In 1993, Rolf Harris and his wobbleboard took the epic anthem to No. 7 in the Top 40. • Robert Plant and Jimmy Page wrote “Stair-way to Heaven” in an old mansion called Headley Grange in England, where Led Zep-pelin recorded most of their fourth album. It was a huge, old, dusty mansion with no electricity but great acoustics. Many bands would go there to get some privacy and focus on songwriting. One night, in front of a roaring fire, Page strummed the chords of the song for Plant. Plant wrote 90 percent of the lyrics right there in front of the fire. • The band’s 1969 debut album, “Led Zeppe-lin I,” was recorded in just 36 hours. At the time, the band had been together for just two-and-a-half weeks. • Led Zeppelin was once threatened with legal action by Eva von Zeppelin, a descendant of Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin, who de-signed the airship from which they took their name. Eva said the band were “shrieking monkeys” who were not entitled to “use a privileged family name without permission.” • Exhausted by years on the road, Led Zeppe-lin bassist John Paul Jones once had to be talked out of quitting the band to take up the position of choirmaster at Winchester Cathe-dral. • Led Zeppelin’s 1973 album, “Houses of The Holy,” was banned in Spain and in parts of America because its cover depicted naked children crawling up the causeway in Antrim, Northern Ireland. • The album “Led Zeppelin IV” is one of the best-selling albums in history and its massive popularity cemented Led Zeppelin’s super-stardom in the 1970s. To date, this album alone has sold 23 million copies in the United States. • Betcha didn’t know: The four symbols on the label and inside sleeve of “Led Zeppelin IV,” represent (from left to right) Jimmy Page, John Paul Jones, John Bonham and Robert Plant.

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To Advertise Call: 208-704-9972 Cupcake Making Tips Staples: ¥ Betty Crocker boxed cake mixes in a variety of flavors ¥ Ready-to-spread frostings ¥ Decorating icing, assorted colors ¥ Decorating gels, assorted colors ¥ Food colors (liquid, gel or paste). Try paste food color for more vivid color frosting ¥ Assorted colored sugars and edible glitters ¥ Assorted candy sprinkles

Cupcake-Making Tips from Betty Crocker While Betty Crocker is often associated with 1950s happy homemaking, she originally belonged to a different generation. Created in 1921 as a “friend to homemakers” for the Washburn Crosby Company (a forerunner to General Mills) in Minneapolis, her purpose was to answer consumer mail. “She” was actually the women of the Home Service Department who signed Betty’s name. Eventually, Betty Crocker’s local radio show on WCCO expanded, and audiences around the nation tuned her in, tried her moneysaving recipes and wrote Betty nearly 5,000 fan letters per day. “Your talks ... have given me hope,” wrote one listener to the Betty Crocker radio program during the Depression. The fascinating book “Finding Betty Crocker,” by author and documentary producer Susan Marks, offers an utterly unique look at the culinary and marketing history of America’s First Lady of Food. According to Marks’s largely chronological “biography” (there was no real Betty Crocker), it was human connections like this one that made Crocker one of the most successful marketing tools ever. Filled with treasures from the General Mills archive -- including letters sent to Crocker during World War II, reprints of famous recipes and advertisements, and portraits updated through the years -- Marks’ book introduces readers to the people who breathed life into Crocker’s image as the happiest of homemakers. Susan Marks’s interest in Betty Crocker began during her stint as a tour guide for the Minnesota Historical Society, then evolved into a master’s thesis, documentary film project and, ultimately, her delightful book about Betty Crocker. Currently, Marks writes and produces videos for corporations as well as for nonprofits and the arts. With these basic items and tips courtesy of the Betty Crocker website (www.bettycrocker. com), you can bake and decorate a batch of beautiful cupcakes in a snap.

Equipment: ¥ Cupcake pans (mini and regular) ¥ Paper baking cups available in a variety of colors and prints. Find them in supermarkets, party, craft or specialty cake decorating stores. ¥ Resealable food-storage plastic bags for piping icings and glazes.

Tip: Baking Pans A box of cake mix makes 24 to 30 cupcakes in regular-size cupcake pan. There also are pans that have mini, large and jumbo cups. If you have only one pan and a recipe calls for more cupcakes than your pan will make, just cover and refrigerate the rest of the batter while baking the first batch. Cool the pan about 15 minutes, then bake the rest of the batter, adding 1 to 2 minutes to the bake time. An easy way to fill baking cups is to use an ice cream scoop. Use one that measures out 1/3 cup batter when filling regular-size cups. Use one that measures out 2 tablespoons batter when filling mini cups. Frosting Tips: ¥ Carefully dip tops of cupcake into the frosting, give a slight twist and remove. Finish off with a swirl of a knife if needed. ¥ Dip frosted cupcakes into bowls of nuts, colored sugar, sprinkles or other decors for easy decorating.

*** ANSWERS

May 6, 2010


May 6, 2010

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Barking, Whining Annoy Dog Owner DEAR PAW’S CORNER: I need some strategies on some issues I’m having with my Bichon, “Sassy.” First, she wakes me up at the same time, 4:45 a.m., and whines for me to come play with her. I’ve tried putting her out of the room, tried the “shhhh” thing, but she’ll just keep whining. Also, if another dog is in the yard, she will bark and go crazy. I’ve tried distracting her, shaking coins in a can and using a spray bottle, to no avail. Can you help? -- Maryann, via e-mail DEAR MARYANN: These behaviors can be frustrating, especially since Sassy sounds like a strong-willed, independent dog. In the first case, Sassy is on a different sleep schedule than you, and wants to be up and playing early. All of my dogs have been “morning people” too, and I’m not, so I feel your pain. Is anything that might be triggering her to wake up, like a coffee maker set to go off at 4:45? Look and listen for odd sounds at that time. You also might try to have Sassy sleep in the other room all night. If she’s used to sleeping with you, this will mean a few trying nights. Don’t scold or shush her, and reward her with treats when she gets into her bed. Also, try adjusting her feeding, walking and play times, morning and night, and see if that makes any difference. Barking at strange dogs is an instinctive thing Sassy does. She doesn’t respond to negative reinforcement (shaker cans, spray bottles), so try a positive approach. When Sassy starts to bark at a dog in the yard, say “Enough” in a calm but firm voice. When she stops barking and looks at you, give her a treat. You’ll need to be patient and avoid giving commands in an angry voice or getting frustrated (which your pet can sense) and reverting to the old “shhh!” technique. Work calmly and consistently with Sassy on these issues.

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1. SCIENCE: What is “sidereal time”? 2. MUSIC: What is meant by the musical term “giocoso”? 3. RELIGION: Who is the patron saint of firefighters? 4. LEGAL: What does it mean when a lawyer takes a case “pro bono”? 5. GEOGRAPHY: What U.S. state lies between Oregon and Wyoming? 6. GENERAL KNOWLEDGE: What is the monetary unit of Panama? 7. ANATOMY: The carotid artery is located in what part of the human body? 8. HISTORY: What was the first of the 13 original states to be admitted into the Union? 9. U.S. PRESIDENTS: Who was President Franklin Roosevelt’s vice president during his first term? 10. MEDICAL: What causes Lyme disease?

1. Elvis Presley served in which branch of the military? What was his job? 2. Name the first No. 1 hit by the group The Four Seasons. Bonus for knowing the year. 3. What is the stage name of Domingo Samudio? What the name of the ‘60s hit he named after his cat? 4. The lyrics to the song “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)” were taken from a television commercial advertising what product? 5. The Elegants sealed their fate as a one-hit wonder with which song? 6. Name the artist behind “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.”

1. Who was the last American League player before Boston’s Jacoby Ellsbury in 2009 to have at least 35 stolen bases by the All-Star Break in consecutive years? 2. Which baseball player recorded the highest percentage of votes to be inducted into the Hall of Fame? 3. Who was the last University of North Carolina football player to be taken in the first round of the NFL Draft before Hakeem Nicks in 2009? 4. In 2010, the Duke University men’s basketball team won its fourth national championship. How many times have the Blue Devils been in the Final Four? 5. When was the first time the U.S. men’s hockey team beat Canada at an Olympics? 6. NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon has won the most Cup races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (four). Who is second in victories? 7. Which women’s tennis player has the most Australian Open singles titles in the Open Era?

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1. Elvis served in the Army from 1958 to 1960. He was assigned to a tank battalion, but was eventually assigned to be a jeep driver. 2. “Sherry,” in 1962. 3. Sam the Sham (and the Pharaohs) cut the tune “Wooly Bully.” 4. Coca-Cola. 5. “Little Star,” in 1958. 6. Bobby McFerrin. The tune snagged a 1989 Grammy for Song of the Year. All of the “sounds” were made by McFerrin -- no instruments or other singers were used.

1. Rickey Henderson, 1988-90. 2. Tom Seaver got 98.8 percent of the vote by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America. 3. Julius Peppers, in 2002. 4. Fifteen times. 5. In 1956, the U.S. beat Canada, 4-1. 6. Jimmie Johnson, with three victories. 7. Serena Williams has won five titles (2003, ‘05, ‘07, ‘09, ‘10).

May 6, 2010


Tidbit 12