Happy Epiphany!

The Twelve Days of Christmas, or Christmastide, ended yesterday. If you're like me, you probably have an exorbitant amount of Christmas lights and decorations to take down now (although it's only bad luck to leave up decorations past yesterday in the UK)!

Today, Epiphany, is the Christian holiday that recognizes the Incarnation of Jesus Christ (in other words, that God made Jesus, a divine being, into man). Countries all over the world recognize this holiday with traditional and modern celebrations.

In America, the people who celebrate Epiphany the most are in New Orleans. They use this date to mark the beginning of Marti Gras and "King Cake" season. Believe it or not, King Cakes are vaguely related to the birth of Jesus- inside the large cinnamon roll cake is a small trinket, usually a plastic baby doll representing the baby Jesus. Whoever gets the piece of cake with the trinket in it is named the King or Queen of the day and buys the cake for everyone the next year.

... I don't know how finding baby Jesus in your cake and becoming royalty for the day is connected to the Incarnation, but to each his own, I suppose! :)

Hope you have a happy day no matter what you do!


Burn Calories By Tapping Your Foot

Worried about the few extra pounds you may have picked up recently? Lifehacker just posted this easy advice that they learned from MSN's Shaun Chavis:
Tap your foot. Your skinnier friends are probably fidgeters, who burn up to 350 calories a day just by tapping their feet or being restless. Try it for a few days. Walk around while you're on the phone, or tap out a tune with your hands or feet (in the privacy of your own office, of course).
Seems simple enough, right? Plus, it'll give you a good excuse to dance a little at your desk to any new tunes you acquired this season!


The Simpsons' Platinum Anniversary!

I saw on a commercial last night that "The Simpsons" was celebrating its 20 years of shows! Although their shorts started appearing on the Tracy Ullman show in 1987, their first full-length episode aired on December 17th, 1989, on Fox. Unbelievable!

Other shows that beat 21 seasons are mostly news shows, sports programming, talk shows, soap operas, game shows, children's programs, and variety shows.

21 seasons puts "The Simpsons" in a league with "The Real World" (22 seasons), "Lassie" (20 seasons), "Gunsmoke" (20 seasons), and "Bodies In Motion [with Gilad]" (24 seasons). The typical long-running shows we think about don't come very close: "ER" (15 seasons), "Bonanza" (14 seasons), "Dallas" (13 seasons), "NYPD Blue" (12 seasons). And notice none of those are sitcoms! In that category, "The Simpsons" wins by far!

Congrats to our lovably dysfunctional animated family!

We've all come a long way in 20 years together, haven't we?


Sleep Like An Animal

Anyone else tired after last night's festivities?

Well, if you need an excuse to nap, just look to nature. The most protected animals (or the ones in the least fear of getting attacked by predators) get to sleep the most. Lions, for example, can regularly sleep for up to 17 hours a day. Bats, who can hide in caves, sleep around 19 hours per day.

I think, since I feel relatively safe from predators (besides possibly my bosses if I don't show to work!), I am going to follow the animals' example this weekend!

you've got the right idea, little buddy!