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m ent T h e ex c i te g ! is b ui ldin “Let My Determination Work For You!”

February 06, 2012

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Man: “Would you still love me if I lost all my money?” Woman: “Yes, but I’d miss you.”.

VALENTINE’S DAY

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VALENTINE’S DAY

by Kathy Wolfe As Tidbits brings you fresh information about Valentine’s Day, remember: “Say it with flowers; say it with sweets; say it with kisses; say it with eats; say it with jewelry; say it with drink. But always be careful not to say it with ink.” Anonymous • There were probably two different men considered to be St. Valentine, and both were supposedly beheaded on February 14. The more commonly accepted legend identifies St. Valentine as a priest in early Rome around the year 260. The Roman emperor at that time forbade his soldiers to marry because he believed that single men made better soldiers. In the name of love and in defiance of the emperor’s edict, Valentine secretly married soldiers and their ladies and paid the price with his execution. • Tradition places the first Valentine letter around 1415. This was when a Frenchman, the Duke of Orléans, was captured in battle and imprisoned in the Tower of London. From there, he composed rhymed love letters to his wife. • In England during the 1700s, women wrote men’s names on little bits of paper, encased them in a piece of clay and dropped all the clay pieces into a pond. The first paper to rise to the top was supposedly the name of the woman’s true love. turn the page for more!

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Tidbits® of Hoover

’Get Smart’ Gadget Helps Caregivers Caregivers for seniors with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia will applaud a new gadget that can help keep track of those who might wander: a shoe with a tiny global positioning satellite (GPS) tracker in the heel. Footware company Aetrex and tracking software provider GTX have put a lot of thought into both the shoes and the tracking capability. The leather shoes, for either men or women, are either lace up or strap. They look very comfortable, and come with two removable layers for a better fit. There’s a grooved polyurethane sole for traction. But it’s not cheap. The shoes alone cost $300, and the GPS requires a connection plan that runs $35 a month. You can find information online at www.aetrex.com/gps or call 800-526-2739.

Chocolate Pudding For a Valentine’s treat, we tweaked this chocolate classic from our 1927 cookbook. Now with a double dose of antioxidant-packed bittersweet chocolate and cocoa, it will satisfy any sweet tooth. 1/2 cup sugar 2 cups whole milk 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa 3 tablespoons cornstarch 1 teaspoon vanilla extract Sweetened whipped cream and chocolate shavings (optional) 1. In 3-quart saucepan, with wire whisk, combine sugar and 1 1/2 cups milk; heat on medium-high until bubbles form around edge of pan. Remove from heat and add chocolate. Let stand 1 minute, then whisk until chocolate melts. 2. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, whisk cocoa, cornstarch and remaining 1/2 cup milk until smooth. Whisk in eggs until blended. Whisking constantly, add 1/2 cup hot chocolate mixture in slow stream. 3. Heat chocolate mixture remaining in pan on medium-low. Whisking constantly, gradually add egg mixture to pan. Cook, whisking constantly, 10 minutes or until mixture becomes very thick and begins to bubble. Whisk in vanilla. Divide among 6 small serving cups. 4. Refrigerate until cold, 4 hours or up to 2 days. Top with whipped cream and shaved chocolate. Makes 6 servings. Each serving: About 225 calories, 11g total fat (6g saturated), 82mg cholesterol, 65mg sodium, 36g total carbs, 3g dietary fiber, 7g protein. .

1. Is the book of Corinth in the Old or New Testament or neither? 2. What’s the only book of the Bible (KJV) in which the name of God is not mentioned? Ruth, Ezra, Esther, Amos 3. Whose last words were, “Had Zimri peace, who slew his master”? Zipporah, Keturah, Jezebel, Miriam 4. To what city was Saul traveling near when he heard the voice of Jesus? Antioch, Damascus, Paphos, Rome 5. What runaway slave did Paul write to Philemon about? Sosthenes, Onesimus, Molech, Cedar 6. From 1 Kings 17, who ate a poor widow’s last meal? Amos, Elijah, Matthew, Daniel

There are additional devices available to make your life easier if you care for a senior with Alzheimer’s or any other condition where constant monitoring is essential. Back in 2009, a tracker was created that also uses GPS. Called the i-Tag (www.i-tag.biz), the little device is the size of a nine-volt battery. It can be programmed with a “geofence” -- a set area that that you establish. If the wearer leaves that area, an alarm will sound. There also are locks that sound an alarm if a door is opened, alarm pads that sound an alarm if they’re stepped on and mini-cams that can help you keep an eye on a room from other parts of the house. There are a number of tools that will make it easier on those who care for dementia and Alzheimer’s patients. It’s just a matter of finding what works best for you.

Vets With ALS Now 100 Percent Disabled Back in 2008, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) was classified as a presumptive for service-related disability, and benefits were given. The level of disability was classified at 30 percent, with frequent rechecks as time went on and the disease progressed. It was that ever-changing rating that held up a lot of benefits and needed equipment. An item in the Federal Register for Dec. 20 says that the disability evaluation criterion has been revised. Veterans who have ALS now will be considered 100 percent disabled and much of the paper chase will be dispensed with. The jump from 30 percent to 100 percent could mean a significant increase in benefits money. At 30 percent disability, a single veteran would be eligible for $389 a month. At the 100 percent level, that amount goes up to $2,769. The amount increases if there is a spouse or children. Additionally, there might be Special Monthly Compensation (SMC) monies due to the level of disability. ALS is found in those veterans who served in Gulf I back in 1991 at a rate twice that of those who served elsewhere. Initial research was published in the Neurology journal in 2003. A second study determined that the rate also was twice that of the general population. Hardest hit were those in the Army and Air Force. Initial research was even able to narrow down a time frame for exposure: Between August 1990 and July 1991. An environmental trigger was suspected. Studies done later, in 2005 and 2009 at Harvard, found that veterans in any branch with any military service anywhere were 60 percent more likely than the general population to be diagnosed with ALS. After fine-tuning the data, service in war was suspected as a component. But a 2006 review concluded that any military service is related to increased risk for ALS.


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For Advertising Call 205-515-5288 VALENTINE’S DAY (continued):

According to tradition, that night they would dream of their future husband. Some recited a

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to me, in dreams let me my true love see.” “the man of my dreams”!

their shirtsleeve and wore it for several days, literally “wearing their hearts on their sleeves.” fans to convey secret messages to their beaus. Drawing her fan across the cheek meant “I love you,” while twirling it in her right hand gave the warning, “We are being watched.” to

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the Valentine,” her original creations featured real lace and colorful ribbons. She eventually

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“vinegar Valentines,” due to their sour or acidic messages.

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Finding Lower-Rate Credit Cards If your credit is solid but you’re paying higher creditcard interest rates than you’d like, don’t expect the credit-card company to lower your rate without a request from you. Even then it’s likely you’ll be stuck. But you have another option: credit unions. It’s likely that a credit union will be your best bet for a credit card you’ll want to keep long term. The National Association of Federal Credit Unions [www.nafcu. org] wrote in a recent news release that credit unions

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www.hoovertacticalfirearms.com have an upper limit of 18 percent for both credit cards and loans. Their average credit-card interest rate is 12 percent, with some as low as 9 percent. When it comes to fees, credit unions are generally much lower. Credit unions are not-for-profit, so they’re not out to charge a fee for every loophole they can get away with. You’ll find ATMs, good service and a friendly staff because as an account holder, you are a member-owner. If you want to look for credit unions you’re eligible to join and see a comparison between their rates and banks, go online to www.culookup.com. (Tip: On the lookup screen, it asks for your whole street address. Don’t give it. You’ll get just as much information by putting in just your ZIP code.) You’ll be shown a map of credit unions in your area. On the left side, click on Compare CU Rates for comparisons on nearly any financial product: car and boat

loans, adjustable- and fixed-rate mortgages, moneymarket accounts, credit cards and certificates of deposit. The site also has a number of calculators for home, credit, retirement, savings and auto. Remember: Don’t cancel your other credit cards if you take a new one for a better deal. Bring the balance to zero on old card, and then let the card sit unused. Your credit score is partially determined by the total amount of credit available to you versus the percentage of that amount you have used. If you have an unused card with a $10,000 availability and you cancel that account, the percentage of your total availability drops. As the percentage of credit you use rises (after you cancel a card), your credit score drops. Keep your percentage under 30 percent.


Tidbits® of Hoover

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To Your Good Health By Paul G Donohue M.D.

Sciatica: Big Nerve Can Be Big Problem DEAR DR. DONOHUE: I am a 78-year-old woman, and five months ago I came down with sciatica in my left leg underneath the buttock. It’s very painful. I’d like to know if there is something that can be done. -- S.M. ANSWER: The sciatic (sigh-ATTIC) nerve is the body’s longest and largest nerve. It springs from nerve rootlets that emerge from the spinal cord in the lower back. Those rootlets intertwine to form this big nerve. It travels from the back, through the buttocks and down the leg to the foot. Anything that presses on or irritates the nerve in its long course gives rise to sciatica (sigh-ATTICuh), painful inflammation of the nerve.

1. MAPS: U.S. Interstate 10 ends in Los Angeles, but where does it begin on the East Coast? 2. SCIENCE: In 1959, physicist Richard Feynman was the first to propose what kind of technology (on a small scale)? 3. LITERATURE: What was Ernest Hemingway’s middle name? 4. MUSIC: What American folk-music group is famous for their song “Keep on the Sunny Side”? 5. MEDICAL TERMS: What is a more common name for the medical condition “pruritus”? 6. SPORTS: Where will the 2014 Olympic Winter Games be held? 7. ARCHITECTURE: What famous architect’s residence in Wisconsin was called Taliesin? 8. LANGUAGE: What are the comparative and superlative forms of the word “little”? 9. MOVIES: In “Cast Away,” what was the name that marooned actor Tom Hanks (Chuck Noland) gave the volleyball that washed ashore? 10. GEOGRAPHY: What is the capital of Brazil?

Valentine's Sundae Dessert Bars 18 (2 1/2-inch) chocolate graham crackers 4 cups sugar- and fat-free vanilla ice cream 1 (4-serving) package sugar-free chocolate cook-and-serve pudding mix 2/3 cup nonfat dry milk powder 1 cup water 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 teaspoons reduced-calorie margarine 1/2 cup miniature marshmallows 3 tablespoons chopped pecans 1/2 cup reduced calorie whipped topping 4 maraschino cherries, halved 1. Arrange 9 graham crackers in a 9-by-9-inch cake pan. In large bowl, gently stir ice cream until slightly softened. Coarsely crush remaining 9 graham crackers and stir into softened ice cream. Spread mixture gently over graham crackers in cake pan. Cover and freeze while preparing topping. 2. In medium saucepan, combine dry pudding mix, dry milk powder and water. Cook over medium heat until mixture thickens and starts to boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in vanilla extract, margarine and marshmallows. Drizzle hot mixture evenly over ice cream mixture. Sprinkle pecans evenly over top. Re-cover and continue to freeze for 2 hours or until firm. 3. Let set at room temperature for 10 minutes. Cut into 8 servings. To serve, top each with 1 tablespoon whipped topping and a maraschino cherry half. Makes 8 servings.

A bulging back disk can press on the nerve. Arthritic spurs on the spine are another source of irritation. A collapse of a backbone from osteoporosis is another trigger for pain, and the pain can be in the lower back, the buttocks or down the leg to the foot. Have you tried Tylenol (acetaminophen) for pain relief? Aleve, Advil, Motrin and the many other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs dull pain and quiet inflammation. Icing the painful back area for 10 to 15 minutes three times a day is another way to numb pain. If ice doesn’t work, turn to heat -- hot compresses or a heating pad. Stretching the back might take pressure off the nerve. Sit on a firm chair with feet on the floor and knees shoulderwidth apart. Turn slightly to the left. Then, with your right arm dangling down between the knees and left arm dangling down on the outside of the left knee, bend down to the floor as far as you can and hold that position for five seconds. Straighten up and reverse the process by turning to your right and arranging your arms with the right arm outside the right knee and the left arm between the knees. If this exercise hurts, stop. If it doesn’t, perform five bends each, to the right and then to the left. Do the exercise three times a day. Five months is a long time to put up with back pain. I’m not sure if self-treatment will do much for you. You need a doctor’s intervention, along with physical therapy. The booklet on back pain delves more deeply into its causes and treatments. To order a copy, write: Dr. Donohue -- No. 303W, Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475. Enclose a check or money order (no cash) for $4.75 U.S./$6 Canada with the recipient’s printed name and address. Please allow four weeks for delivery. *** DEAR DR. DONOHUE: Some time ago, you answered a letter from an 80-year-old lady who asked if she still needed to have mammograms. I say an unqualified yes. Two years ago, at the age of 82 1/2, my mammogram detected cancer. Surgery was followed by radiation. Two years later, I am feeling fine and doing well. -- A.S. ANSWER: Experts argue about the value of mammograms late in life. Stories like yours make me side with those who promote having mammograms as long as a woman is in reasonable health. If a woman has an estimate of living at least four more years, mammograms are a good idea.

Q: I got completely hooked on HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” and I can’t wait until it returns for its second season. Would you know when that might be? -- Brad F., via e-mail A: Well, Brad, I just happen to have that little nugget of info -- and I am willing to share. The next season of the medievalfantasy series begins (no fooling) April 1 at 9 p.m., and like the first season, the second season will be 10 episodes long. And Lena Headey (who plays Ceresei) tells us that season two will bring even more drama (Is that possible?). The show also stars Peter Dinklage as Tyrion, Emilia Clarke as Daenerys, Nikolai Coster-Waldau as Jaime, Kit Harington as Jon and Michelle Fairley as Catelyn. *** Q: I’m confused: First I heard Marg Helgenberger is leaving “CSI” for good, then I heard she’s not, and now I hear she is again. Can you clear this up for me? -Constance D., Newport, Conn. A: I’ll try. Marg, who left the top-rated CBS crime drama at the end of January, is pretty much gone -- as a regular castmember. However, her character’s future has been left open so Marg can return for a guest appearance, if she wishes.

Marg assures her fans that they haven’t seen the last of Catherine Willows: “That was one of the reasons why it was a little easier for me to leave the show, because the producers said to me practically every day that the door is wide open. If I’m available and I’m up for it, you betcha.” Q: I remember seeing pictures of Julianne Moore in some entertainment magazines dressed up as Sarah Palin. Was that for a movie? If so, when will it be out? I’d love to see it. -- Margaret W., via e-mail A: Julianne does indeed star as the 2008 vice-presidential hopeful in the HBO movie “Game Change,” which is based on the 2010 book of the same name. The movie premieres on Saturday, March 10, and also stars Ed Harris as Sen. John McCain and Woody Harrelson as campaign chair Steve Schmidt, along with Peter MacNicol, Sarah Paulson and Ron Livingston. The movie will mainly track the actions of the Republican Party during the 2008 elections, while the book devotes equal time to both Republicans and Democrats. *** Q: I am dying to find out who killed Rosie Larson! When will “The Killing” return? -Darla A., Portland, Ore. A: Hang in there just a few more months, Darla! Sunday, April 1 marks the return of the suspense drama to AMC with a two-hour premiere starting at 8/7c. The following week, the series returns to its normal timeslot of 9/8c. If you need to catch up or want to refresh your memory, you can see the entire 13-episode first season On Demand starting Monday, March 5.


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Save smaller bits of leftover veggies in a large freezer-safe container or bag in the freezer. When it’s full, make vegetable soup. “Be sure you use bathroom fans correctly, turning on to remove steam but turning off to keep from pumping out heat. This is equally important in the summer, when you pump out valuable cooled air. Many people don’t think of fans this way, and they end up running for hours.” -- R.D. in Mississippi Keep salt or baking soda by the stove for small, quick cleanups. A good dose of salt will stop an egg from running all over the place. Dip a damp cloth in baking soda for a handy scrub. Although a handful of either might work in a pinch on a small flare-up on the stove, you should have a fire extinguisher close by for fires. “I used to comb through last year’s calendar for important yearly dates when transferring them to the new year’s calendar. This year I have gotten smart. At the end of the month, before turning the page, I highlight the items I’d like to put in next year’s calendar. When I look back, I won’t have to search through all the entries for the good stuff.” -- U.L. in Ohio “I just spent a lot of time cleaning my mother’s bathtub in a long-neglected bathroom. To keep it from mildewing, I used paste wax to protect the walls. You can use car wax for the same purpose, and many people know about this helpful tip. But I wanted to add a caution: Walls only; do not wax the inside of the tub, especially if you have an elderly resident (or a child). And make sure to have a nonslip mat in the tub at all times.” -- A Daughter in Oregon

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On Feb. 16, 1848, romantic composer Frederic Chopin plays his final concert in his adopted city of Paris, 18 months before his death from tuberculosis at the age of 39. After fleeing his native Poland, he spent the rest of his life amid the high society of France. On Feb. 19, 1851, an angry mob in San Francisco’s business district “tries” two Australian suspects in the robbery and assault of C.J. Jansen. Vigilantes were fairly common during the Gold Rush boom in San Francisco, and they were so well regarded that they took over the Democratic Party in the late 1850s, and some became respected politicians. On Feb. 18, 1885, Mark Twain publishes his famous and controversial novel “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” At the book’s heart is the journey of Huck and his friend Jim, a runaway slave, down the Mississippi River on a raft. On Feb. 13, 1915, The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) is formed. ASCAP collects and distributes royalties for copyrighted musical works. Today, ASCAP reports that it distributes more than $800 million in royalties annually to its members. On Feb. 14, 1929, Sir Alexander Fleming, a bacteriologist, discovers penicillin. Having left a plate of staphylococcus bacteria uncovered, Fleming noticed that a mold, similar to the kind found on bread, had fallen on the culture and had killed many of the bacteria. On Feb. 15, 1933, president-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt escapes an assassination attempt. Deranged, unemployed brick layer Giuseppe Zangara shouted, “Too many people are starving!” and opened fire with six rounds. Zangara’s extreme action reflected the anger and frustration felt among many Americans during the Great Depression. On Feb. 17, 1966, Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys rolls tape on the first take of “Good Vibrations.” Six months, four studios and $50,000 later, he finally completed his 3 minute, 39 second symphony, pieced together from more than 90 hours of tape recorded during literally hundreds of sessions.

Be a Responsible Pet Owner By Samantha Mazzotta

February is Responsible Pet Owners Month, and while I sometimes grouse about events that designate a specific period of the year to do something that should obviously be done every single day, I think it’s a worthy way to enlighten new pet owners or those thinking about getting a pet on how to care for that pet. So, how can you be a responsible pet owner? If you’re considering getting a pet: --Study and learn all you can about the pet or breed you’re interested in. --Consider adopting from a shelter or rescue. --Avoid buying dogs from puppy mills, at flea markets or other sketchy places. --If buying from a breeder, research and consider carefully before making a purchase. If you already have a pet: --Spay or neuter your pet. --Do more than just provide food, water and shelter: Give your pet lots of love and attention.

-Teach your children how to properly care for pets and how to play responsibly with them. --Provide regular, daily obedience training to your dog. --Keep your cat indoors. --When taking your dog out for a walk, follow your town’s leash laws and pick up after it. --At dog parks, follow the posted rules. Owners who don’t follow rules can put the park at risk of being shut down. Don’t be that guy. There are, of course, many other ways to be a responsible pet owner. But this is a good time to review the way you care for your pets, the routines you’ve fallen into, the training you’ve meant to start -- and to plan new fun and activities for your pets and family. Send your tips, questions and comments to Paw’s Corner, c/o King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or e-mail them to pawscorner@hotmail.com.


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For Advertising Call (205) 552-5502 VALENTINE’S DAY (continued): • In the 18th-century, some unmarried women pinned five bay leaves to the center and four corners of their pillows on February 13. According to tradition, that night they would dream of their future husband. Some recited a verse before sleep: “Good Valentine, be kind to me, in dreams let me my true love see.” Perhaps this is where we derive the expression “the man of my dreams”! • Another old Valentine custom had men write women’s names on bits of paper and place them in a jar. Each man drew a paper, and that woman was the man’s Valentine. He spent the day paying special attention to her and bestowing small gifts, often a pair of gloves. Some of the men pinned the lady’s name to their shirtsleeve and wore it for several days, literally “wearing their hearts on their sleeves.” • In Victorian days, young women used their fans to convey secret messages to their beaus. Drawing her fan across the cheek meant “I love you,” while twirling it in her right hand gave the warning, “We are being watched.” • Esther A. Howland was the first person to commercially manufacture Valentines, beginning in 1847. Considered the “Mother of the Valentine,” her original creations featured real lace and colorful ribbons. She eventually expanded her business into sales of $100,000 annually. • In the late 1850s came the “penny dreadfuls,” Valentines with insulting and derogatory verses. They were printed on cheap paper and designed to make the recipient feel dreadful, hence their name. They were also known as “vinegar Valentines,” due to their sour or acidic messages. • According to a French tradition, a young woman lets her admirer know whether his affections are welcome by what she feeds him on Valentine’s Day. If she feeds him an egg dish, the answer is definitely “No,” while something with apple or pear signifies “Yes.” • Those colorful little candy conversation hearts have been around since 1866, when they were first manufactured by the New England Confectionery Company, or NECCO, as the company is more commonly known. Originally called “motto hearts,” they contained messages such as “Be Good,” “Be True” and “Kiss Me.” NECCO began updating their phrases in recent years, adding “Call Me,” “Fax Me,” “Email Me” and starting in 2011, one in 80 hearts reads “Tweet Me.” NECCO makes eight billion Sweethearts every year, selling about 100,000 pounds of them every day between January 1 and February 14. • If you plan to give your Valentine a bottle of perfume, you might want to know that one of the ingredients in many perfumes is coal tar. And in order to prolong the fragrance, manufacturers add substances taken from beavers, male musk deer and sperm whales. Still other ingredients are derived from turpentine. Most perfumes are produced synthetically using chemical substances, and even the best perfumes contain only about 10 percent flower petal oil dissolved in alcohol. It takes about 10 million jasmine flowers to produce only 2.2 pounds

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• In the 1600s, perfume was made by placing rose petals in white wine, adding fragrant herbs and spices and allowing the mixture to ferment for two weeks.

• Thinking about chocolates for your sweetie? You’ll be glad to know that chocolate ranks high in food value and contains several vitamins and minerals. It was also the belief of the ancient Aztec Indians that the cacao bean was a source of wisdom and knowledge because the seeds had been brought to their land from Paradise. • Before it is molded into bars, milk chocolate is stirred by machines for 72 hours to achieve the smoothest chocolate possible. • About 36 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolate will be given to sweethearts this year. But Valentine’s Day is far from the biggest day of the year for candy purchases. Halloween is first, followed by Easter, then Christmas. • For its first 68 years, the Hershey Chocolate Company operated with no advertising budget. It did not advertise its products until July 1970. • Egyptians were the first candy makers 3,000 years ago when they mixed fruits and nuts with honey. • If your Valentine asks you for a Pascali, a Chrysler Imperial, a Rubaiyat, a Floradora, a Montezuma or an Iceberg, she’s asking for a rose from the list of the more popular varieties. The Society of American Florists estimates the number of roses produced for Valentine’s Day at around 200 million. About 43 percent of flowers given are red roses, and 29 percent are other colors of roses. The remaining gifts are mixed flowers. • Cupid, Roman mythology’s god of love, was the son of the goddess Venus and the god Mars. He’s often depicted with wings, a bow and a quiver of arrows, and one shot is said to cause his “victims” to fall in love. Other legends represent Cupid with two sets of arrows — one gold-tipped set for love and another lead-tipped set, which brings about hatred.

of fragrant oil. Although a perfume may smell like one specific fragrance, it can actually be a blend of up to 500 ingredients.

the population had increased to 37,253,956. In the span of just over one and a half centuries, the population increased a whopping 53,000 times. ¥ Rice paper is not made from rice. It’s made from the pith of the rice paper plant.

¥ It was 19th-century German philosopher, composer and poet Friedrich Nietzsche who made the following sage observation: “At times one remains faithful to a cause only because its opponents do not cease to be insipid.” ¥ Despite all the cartoons you’ve seen throughout your life, rabbits generally prefer greens to carrots, and mice would rather eat grains and fruit than cheese. ¥ The area that is now the state of California had a population of about 700 in 1854. In 2010,

¥ You may be surprised to learn that, according to the National Sleep Foundation, 33 percent of all preschoolers have a TV in their room, and 20 percent of infants and toddlers have one. ¥ If you ever make a trip to Italy (lucky you!) and visit the town of Modena, be sure to go to the bell tower. There you might see an item that is, to the best of my knowledge, unique in the world: a wooden bucket that started a war. In 1325 a group of soldiers from the then-city-state of Modena raided rival city-state Bologna and returned home with the bucket. Greatly desiring to get the bucket back, Bologna declared war. The war raged on for years, but Bologna never did get its bucket back. ¥ If you’re a schoolteacher in Arkansas, you should be aware of an arcane law there: If you bob your hair, you’ll be ineligible for a pay raise.


Press Release From Ray Donaldson

A gutter guard system should never violate or disturb your roof ’s shingles. A gutter guard that alters your shingles will ultimately void your warranty for your roof What’s running around in my attic and why is my basement and expose your home to unnecessary risk. Downspouts flooding? should discharge a minimum of four feet away from the foundation to prevent water from entering the basement. Dear Reader, The type of gutter protection you choose determines how Repairing damage to the overhang of a roof, replacing gutters, successful you will be at eliminating costly repairs in the ridding attics of squirrels, chip monks and birds can be a very future. expensive problem. It is important to get it right the first time. When choosing gutter protection, one common sense rule These pests enter into an attic through openings in the soffit, of thumb is: anything bigger than a grain of sand entering fascia or roof deck. Their main source of food is usually found the gutter can be ether a food source or a potential clog. in the rain gutters. Gutters allow for easy storage and retrieval Think of all the shingle grit that sheds off of a roof after of food and once the gutter is compromised, a squirrel can a hailstorm or heavy rain. That grit mixed with a small easily chew its way into the attic. I cannot stress enough how amount of pine straw is all it takes to wreak havoc. Prodimportant it is to keep your gutters clean. If you cannot inucts found at the local hardware store will only double spect the inside of the gutters on monthly basis, then I recthe work needed to keep the gutters clean. Do you really ommend a gutter protection devise. Keeping the gutters and want to climb that ladder, or even worse fall off the roof? downspouts clean and free flowing with a product like Leaf Choosing a professional gutter company is the key. filter; will not only eliminate their food source but will also Rule number one; check references and your local Better give you the added benefit of a dry basement or crawl space. Business Bureau. That’s right, costly foundation problems are usually cased by Rule number two; look for the best product warranty, clogged and or improperly sloped gutters. Another problem (read it.) Warranty’s that claim: “if the gutter clogs, we will could be downspouts that drain to close too the foundation. If clean it for free”, will only protect you if the gutter comthe gutters on your house are more than 10 years old, there is pany who installed it continues to carry the product and a good chance that they are attached to the house by means of stays in business. A manufacturer’s money back warranty a seven-inch spike nail about two feet apart. is best. If the contractor folds, you will still have coverBeware of this condition. Although the gutter may look secure age. Consumer reporting publications have tested these from the ground, the nails become loose due to the natural ex- products and chose Leaffilter to be the best in reliability, pansion and contraction of the gutter. Vibration from having durability, price and warranty. a new roof installed may also give you a false sense of security. For a permanent solution to these problems contact your If a gutter is even slightly pulled away from the fascia board, it local gutter professional can cause extensive water damage to the siding of the house or At: Leaf filter of Alabama the foundation. On-line at www.leaffilter.com and www.bbb.org (205) 833-6681

BIBLE TRIVIA ANSWERS: 1) Neither; 2) Esther; 3) Jezebel; 4) Damascus; 5) Onesimus; 6) Elijah

Answers 1. Jacksonville, Fla. 2. Nanotechnology 3. Miller 4. The Carter Family 5. Itching 6. Sochi, Russia 7. Frank Lloyd Wright 8. “Less” and “least” 9. Wilson 10. Brasilia

Tidbits of Hoover  

February 6 Issue

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