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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Principalities, Hormones, Cats, and Tea

Hello again, exiting news here. I have heard that it’s actually supposed to snow Thursday or Friday night. This only happens once every ten years, so it’s very exciting.

Fact of the Day


There’s a micro nation in Australia that exists because of a legal loophole. Apparently there was some legal dispute between the government and some farmers about wheat growing and the farmers used a legal technicality to secede and declared themselves The Principality of Hutt River in 1970. They’re still there today, apparently living quite happily and peacefully.

Article of the Day

I read an article about how personality can be affected by four different hormones; serotonin, dopamine, testosterone, or estrogen. Mostly the article talked about the four different personality types (based on which hormone your brain reacts to the most). The Explorer seeks adventure and is bored easily. The builder is organized and a bit rule-bound. The Director is a decider and rather bossy. The Negotiator is understanding and easily swayed.

The article continued on with a little test to see which personality is yours; most people are a combination of two. I suspect I am a negotiator and a builder. By nature I am very non confrontational and tend to carefully plan things out, so these types would seem to fit. However, I have acquired a few traits of the other types over the years. I can be a leader when I know what needs to be done and how to do it best and I seek intellectual challenges, a very director kind of trait. The last couple of years I’ve become a lot more willing to try new things and go to places I’ve never been before, which is rather like an explorer.

I should note that these last two personality types I borrow from do not come naturally to me, I have to make a conscious decision to go exploring or to really take charge of a situation. It’s an interesting idea, but I hesitate to say it’s anything special.

Adventures of Brave Sir Robin

My orange fluffy darling has been an absolute nutcase today. I observed a behavior which I have seen him do before, but I’m still not sure what the purpose is. The dog wandered into the living room and walked past the cat, which the cat in turn pretended to ignore for a minute. Suddenly, the cat turned around and gently grabbed the dog’s neck with both paws like he was hugging her and promptly buried his nose in the dog’s ear.

The poor dog was rather distressed and confused by the whole thing and even more confused when the cat released her and began rolling on the floor and waving his tummy in the air while batting at the anything within reach. Much to the dog’s bewilderment and my amusement, the cat repeated this behavior four or five times before getting bored. I’d almost say that he’d gotten into catnip, but I know that he’s one of those odd cats that have no reaction to catnip. I am not really sure how to explain his behavior, but I do wish I could’ve put it on YouTube.

How to Make a Proper Cup of Tea

I realize very few people understand how tea ought to be prepared. Far too many of you think all that tea preparation requires is a tea bag, some hot water, and some sugar or something to sweeten it. To clarify; properly made tea requires no additives. Even black tea which can be quite bitter should not require milk or sugar. If it does, then (if you will forgive the expression) it probably was quite your cup of tea.

First, you must realize there is a whole wide world beyond Lipton, Bigelow, or Twinings. The next thing to consider is the water temperature and brewing time. It is generally accepted that the lighter colored the tea, the lower the temperature. White or green tea should be added to water that is just shy of boiling and black tea should be added to boiling water. You should be very careful of the water you use; many places have water with so many minerals and additives that it can overpower the flavor of the tea. If it is at all possible, use filtered water.

The amount of time you brew a tea varies from tea to tea and person to person. I find the best indicator is the color. It’s best if you only steep the tea long enough for the water to turn a consistent even color (white and green teas shades of pale gold or green, black teas shades of gold or red). Do not steep it any longer than necessary, or it will be too strong and you will be inclined to add sweeteners. I could go into much more length and detail in regards to the preparation and consumption of tea, but I’ll spare you that for now.


Haiku and Reviews

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1 comment:

  1. Your cat is hilarious.

    You know, the Principality of Hutt River sounds pretty similar to the Grand Republic of Rough and Ready. You ever hear about them?

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