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Posts Tagged ‘travel’

Why I Was Almost Late for Work Today

February 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Oh xkcd. How is it that you are so intuitive to my daily life?

Sometimes in the morning I just don’t move very fast.

Now to be fair, I did go to the gym around 6:30, showered and then sat at the computer to check emails and so forth. Then of course I check on my blog and see the comments to my recent post about water fluoridation in Calgary.

I just find it really interesting that I simply can’t help myself. I HAVE to immediately check people’s references, quotes and basically do fact checking. It sounds so unexciting, yet I just couldn’t wait until after work to do it.

Luckily though, a road along my bus route which was closed, opened today and made traffic run much smoother. Couple that with the bus arriving just as I walk up to my bus stop, and I actually got to work earlier than usual, despite leaving later than I should have.

I guess the scientific gods (?) were smiling upon me today.

I’m Sick of these Mother F#@!in’ Germs on this Mother F#@!in’ Plane!

December 23, 2010 1 comment

Via Wikimedia Commons

I’m sitting in the airport, patiently waiting for my flight home to board. Its late, I’m tired, and I just want to go home.

To pass the time, I decided to catch up on my news reading. So I open up Google Reader and one article jumps out at me for some reason:

6 Places Germs Breed in a Plane

Thanks CNN, like THATS what I need to see right now.

At least they admit in their opening paragraph that they are just trying to score readership by scaring as many weary travellers as possible.

We dug deep to identify the major germ zones on planes (and tips to avoid them). No, you’re not likely to contract meningitis, but better safe than sorry, right?

The article goes on to identify certain “hot zones” to watch out for germs (the lavatory is one, surprise!), and what kind of deadly viruses they may carry (i.e. the flu, and a “superbug”! Booooo!)

Ok, maybe its the skepticism in me, maybe its the sleep deprivation. But seriously, is anyone buying this?

The truth is that ANY high traffic area will contain germs. Every single one. The bus I took here had some. My workplace had some. YOUR workplace had some.

So does writing an article like this help us at all? I would argue no. As long as you practice good hygiene and common sense (get your flu shot!), you are no more at risk of catching anything on a plane than you are at any other public place.

So shame on you CNN for trying to scare innocent holiday travellers like myself just to drum up readership.

But you know what? I’m gonna forgive you. Why? Partly because its Christmas, but also because I know it will happen again and I’m just gonna have to deal.

Could you pass the hand sanitizer?

Why Does Airline Food Taste So Bad? It Could Be Your Hearing…

October 14, 2010 Leave a comment

 

I’ve only had airline food a couple of times. Of course, the food didn’t taste great, but I chalked that up to the fact that it was a 16 hour flight, and lets just say I have been in better moods.

But the general consensus is that airline food is gross. Even though it is mass-produced food, this is a little bit surprising because it is so universal. But a recent study published in the journal Food Quality and Preference, may shed some light on the subject.

The study involved 48 volunteers who tasted sweet and salty foods while listening to white background noise or complete silence.

The volunteers were then asked to rate how strongly flavoured the food was (the sweetness or saltiness), as well as the crunchiness and how much they liked the food overall.

The findings showed that ratings of saltiness and sweetness dropped dramatically while there was background noise. They also found that volunteers rated the crunchiness of the food higher when background noise was present.

This may suggest that airline food just tastes less flavourful when eating with the background noise of the engines. This could also drive the airline to over-season their food, which could also make it taste pretty bad.

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Twitter

August 14, 2010 2 comments

I used to be a Twitter hater. An anti-Twitite, if you will.

I thought it was stupid. I thought “Why do I care what people are doing at every moment of every day?” It made no sense!

Well, eventually I gave in to peer pressure and got myself a Twitter account. It was peer pressure, and it was also because I heard myself say “I don’t understand what the kids are doing these days!”

THAT really freaked me out.

So I got my own Twitter account, fully expecting to find it stupid, inconvenient and irrelevant. My tune changed quite shortly after that.

First I added some famous people. Neil Patrick Harris, Sarah Silverman, and Stephen Colbert were among the first.

@StephenAtHome provides insight into current events with a ridiculous right-wing perspective.

@ActuallyNPH provides updates on his life which I find interesting. This completely disproved my thoughts that I would find these updates irrelevant.

@SarahKSilverman gives hilarity, often with too much of a graphic nature.

And there was much more information waiting for me.

I get to know right away when West Jet has a seat sale, or when my favourite bloggers put up a new post.

Me being a science nerd, I kinda like the idea of knowing whats going on at CERN at all times too. Never know when the Higgs boson will be found!

I also like knowing when Bill Nye, my hero growing up, will be making a TV appearance.

So while my own Twitter following leaves something to be desired (I have 11 followers, roughly half of whom I believe are NOT real people), I’m working on increasing my Twitter presence.

(Oh yeah, feel free to follow me!)

So I apologize Twitter, I prejudged. I was afraid of new things, like 90 year old man who can’t work the debit machine.

Perhaps its having all my interests in one place that is the appeal. Perhaps its the fact the information is in (nearly) real-time. Or maybe its because I always wanted people to speak to me in 140 characters or less.

Whatever the reason, in the future I will have more of an open mind to social media and the like. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go check my Twitter.