Coffee Anyone?

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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If you are a regular reader of this blog you will have realised that I like facts about various subjects.

One of them is food.

I have already done a post about peanut butter (click here) and one about chocolate (click here) , both everyday items that almost all of use and enjoy. ‘

Today’s post is about probably THE most loved and enjoyed drink that we use everyday.

So here we have lots and lots of things you probably never knew about you coffee.

Enjoy (with a nice cup of coffee or three perhaps).

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Coffee Bean Man

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According to legend during the 9th century Ethopian shepherds first noticed the effects of caffeine when they saw their goats appearing to become frisky and ‘dance’ after eating coffee berries.

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Originally coffee was eaten.

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African tribes mixed coffee berries with fat to make energy balls

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Coffee has been used as a beverage for over 700 years.

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The rise of Islam contributed greatly to the popularilty of coffee. The religion prohibited drinking alcohol, but coffee was considered an acceptable drink

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In Turkey, the bridegroom as once required to make a vow during the wedding to always make sure to provide their wives with coffee. If they did not do so it was considered grounds for divorce.

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Also in Turkey, the intended bride is required to serve coffee to her parents and future husband when he comes to ask for her hand in marriage; however, she has no say so in the outcome of the request. Tradition has it that her response is in the sweetness or lack thereof of the coffee. Sweet coffee supposedly means she is okay with the arrangement while salty means she is not.

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All the coffee grown in the world grows in the bean belt which is the area between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn

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Hawaii is the only state in the US that grows coffee

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The heavy tea tax imposed on the American colonies in 1773, which caused the ‘Boston Tea Party’, resulted in America switching from tea to coffee. Drinking coffee became an expression of freedom.

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Black coffee with no sugar contains no calories.

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Drinking a single cup of coffee that has been brewing for 20 minutes provides the body with 300 phytochemicals which act as antioxidants and stay in the body for up to a month.

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New Yorkers drink almost seven times more coffee than other cities in the US.

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Coffee is a psychoactive. And at high doses it can make you see things… It can also kill you…The lethal dose of caffeine is roughly 100 cups of coffee.

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The French philosopher Voltaire is said to have drank 50 cups of coffee a day.

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In 1675 Charles II, King of England issued a proclamation banning Coffee Houses. He said that they were places where people met to plot against him.

 coffee house.

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Coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth, after oil.

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70% of the world consumes Arabica coffee, which is mild and aromatic. The remaining 30% drink Robusta, which is more bitter tasting but has 50% more caffeine than Arabica

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Coffee grows on trees, which can grow up to 30 feet tall but commercially are cultivated to around 10 feet in height for easier picking

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A coffee tree has a lifespan of about 50 to 70 years.

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When it is in bloom, the coffee tree is covered with 30,000 white flowers which begin to develop into fruit after 24 – 36 hours.

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A coffee tree can flower eight times in any one year – depending on rainfall.

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The coffee cherries turn from yellow to orange and then bright red, 6 – 8 months after flowering.

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One coffee tree yields less than half a kilo of coffee per year.

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A French doctor in the 1600s suggested Cafe Au Laits for patients, inspiring people to begin adding milk to coffee.

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The coffee bean is actually a seed inside a bright red berry

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Coffee berries are picked, dried and stripped down until all that is left is the green bean

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Once shipped the beans are roasted at around 500F, after a few minutes the bean will pop and double in size, a few minutes after that the bean will pop again which means the bean is ready

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The aromas in coffee develop at the 10th minute of roasting.

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Coffee increases in volume during roasting by 18.60%.

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Caffeine is not the main bitter compound in coffee. Rather, the pungent perpetrators are antioxidants.

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George Washington invented instant coffee. No, not him, the George Washington from Belgiun, living in Guatemala in 1906, although the invention has also been claimed by a Japanese American chemist known as Satori Kato in 1901.

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Espresso is regulated by the Italian government because it is considered an essential part of their daily life

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Espresso is not a particular roast, bean or blend, just the way the coffee is prepared by shooting pressurized hot water through finely ground coffee

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Brewed espresso has 2.5% fat, while filtered coffee contains 0.6% fat.

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It takes 40 coffee beans to make an espresso.

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In 1822 the French were the first to innovate a crude espresso machine. The Italians then perfected this machine and became the first to manufacture it.

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Contrary to popular belief, espresso has one-third the caffeine of a cup of coffee, simply due to serving size differences.

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In 1785, the coffee revolt broke out in Prussia because coffee consumption was restricted to the nobility, the clergy and high officials.

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James Mason invented the coffee percolator on December 26, 1865.

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30% of coffee drinkers in US added a sweetener of some kind to their coffee, compared with 57% in UK.

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Coffee sacks are usually made of hemp and weigh approximately 132 pounds when they are full of green coffee beans. It takes over 600,000 beans to fill a coffee sack.

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October 1st is official “Coffee Day” in Japan.

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Scientists have discovered more than 800 different aromatic compounds in coffee.

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Italy now has over 200,000 coffee bars, and still growing.

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The term Americano comes from American GIs during WWII who would order espresso with water to dilute the strong flavor

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The term cup of Joe also comes from American servicemen in WWII who were known as big coffee drinkers

cuppa joe .

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The custom of tipping waiters originated in early European Coffee Houses, in order to receive good service in that loud, dirty, hectic place you needed to Tip Big.

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In the ancient Arab culture there was only one way a woman could legally divorce: If her husband didn’t provide enough coffee.

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Melitta Bentz a housewife from Dresden, Germany, invented the first coffee filter in 1908.

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Johan Sebastian Bach wrote an opera about a woman who was addicted to coffee.

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There is a way to brew coffee with marijuana in it and it is described as producing a “dreamy” kind of coffee buzz.

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In Greece and Turkey, the oldest person is always served their coffee first.

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Some of the worlds most powerful businesses, including Lloyds of London and the New York Stock Exchange, started life as a coffee houses.

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In the 1600s there was a controversy over whether or not Catholics could drink coffee, luckily for them Pope Clement VIII loved coffee and authorized its use.

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Caffeine, which is found in coffee, increases the effect of some painkillers, especially aspirin and paracetamol.

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Dorothy Jones of Boston was the first American coffee trader, In 1670 she was granted a license to sell coffee.

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In Africa coffee beans are soaked in water mixed with spices and served as candy to chew.

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A regular 6oz cup of coffee contains about 150 milligrams of caffeine, most physicians call this a “therapeutic dose”.

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There are over 50 species of coffee world wide. Though only 2, arabica and robusta, are commonly used in commercial coffee production.

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Robusta coffee beans have twice as much caffeine than Arabica beans, but our of less quality.

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If you drink five to 10 cups of decaffeinated coffee, you could get as much caffeine as from one or two cups of caffeinated coffee, a study found.

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To produce decaffeinated coffee the beans are steamed, so that dissolved caffeine rises to the surface, where it is washed off using an organic solvent called methylene chloride.

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Coffee can actually be used to fuel a car.

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At one point, Brazil had such a coffee surplus that they tried to find other uses for it, including using it to make plastic.

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The world record for most coffee consumption is 82 cups of coffee in 7 hours.

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Contrary to popular belief light roast coffee actually has more caffeine than dark roast coffee. The reason for this is that the longer coffee is roasted the more caffeine cooked out of the bean.

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An expert in preparing Turkish coffee is known as a “kahveci”.

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The Nicaraguan Margogpipe is the largest of all coffee beans.

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King Frederick of Germany created a special task force to search out illicit coffee smugglers. The task force was known as the Kaffee Schnuffler. The king believed that soldiers who drank coffee were not dependable.

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Both the French and American Revolutions were planned in coffee houses.

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‘Excelso’ or ‘supremo’ do not mean a better quality of coffee when used to describe coffee beans, it refers to the size of the coffee bean.

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Jim Henson, the creator of the Muppets got his start doing coffee ads.

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One the largest misconception in the U.S. today about coffee is that Mocha Java coffee is a chocolaty beverage. In fact there is no chocolate in the Mocha or Java bean at all. Mocha is the name of the largest port in Yemen, here is where all of the African coffee beans are traded and transported. Java is the name of an island in Indonesia where the Java Bean comes from. Both coffees are a dark bean and provide a very rich and bold coffee, when you mix the two together you get Mocha Java coffee.

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Coffee at one stage in its life or another provides a living to more than 100 million people.

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During World War II there was a coffee drinking competition between the branches of the military. The Marines claimed to drink the most – twenty cups a day.

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Coffee was so scarce in Germany that during WWII “coffee bombs” or bags of coffee were dropped from planes to turn the people against their government.

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In Staten Island, there’s a restaurant owner that drinks fifty cups of coffee a day.

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The actress who played the Wicked Witch Of The West in the Wizard Of Oz, Margaret Hamilton, was promoting Maxwell House in the 1970’s.

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In December 2001 Brazil produced a scented postage stamp to promote its coffee – the smell should last between 3 and 5 years.

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No matter what people tell you, caffeine cannot help you sober up.

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The first webcam was invented at The University of Cambridge to let people know if the coffee pot was full or not.

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The Japanese believe that bathing in coffee grounds fermented with pineapple pulp will reduce wrinkles and beautify the skin and there is a spa in Japan that lets you bathe in coffee, tea, or wine. I wouldn’t drink it though…

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Before coffee caught on in the US in the 1700s, beer was breakfast drink of choice. Difficult choice!

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Irish coffee was actually invented to warm up cold American plane passengers leaving from Ireland.

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On May 11, 1926, the slogan “Maxwell House Good to the last drop” was trademark registered.

 Coffee-Posters.

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There is a tourist agency for people wanting to take coffee vacations called Cafe Away.

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Norway drinks the most coffee per person. The United States is ranked number 12.

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Teddy Roosevelt is and was the greatest American coffee drinker, consuming a gallon a day. But you probably shouldn’t attempt to do that.

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The name cappuccino comes from: the resemblance of the drink to the clothing of the Capuchin monks.

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A study conducted at the University of Sao Paulo found that sperm motility was markedly higher in coffee drinkers versus non coffee-drinkers. And it turns out that it doesn’t matter whether you drink one or ten cups a day: The only detectable difference was found between coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers.

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Beethoven counted the number of coffee beans he used to make his coffee and insisted on 60 beans per cup.

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During the American Civil War soldiers who were craving coffee and couldn’t get it tried roasting sweet potatoes and corn to make a beverage similar to coffee. It obviously didn’t become a popular choice.

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In 1674 a group of London women formed a group called WPAC (Women’s Petition Against Coffee). They didn’t like the amount of time their husbands spent in coffee houses rather than being home where they belonged.

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According to David Levitsky, PhD, professor of nutritional science at Cornell University, “Caffeine decreases the rate at which the stomach dumps its contents into the duodenum – a part of the small intestine where digestion takes place – and also increases metabolic rate.” so sipping a cup post-meal could, in small part, help promote a healthy weight.

coffee maker .

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Water is the only beverage more popular than coffee.

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Coffee contains over 1200 chemicals and over half of those are responsible for creating its flavor.

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The average coffee drinker consumes 3 cups of coffee per day.

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Three countries consume 65% of the world’s coffee: America, France, and Germany.

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Coffee grounds sprinkled on the ground around plants and the garden will stop snails and slugs from eating the plants.

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Kenyan coffees are graded as ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’. ‘AA’ is the best coffee. In Costa Rica, coffees are graded as ‘Strictly Hard Bean’, ‘Good Hard Bean’, ‘Hard Bean’, ‘Medium Hard Bean’, ‘High Grown Atlantic’, ‘Medium Grown Atlantic’, and ‘Low Grown Atlantic’. Those coffee beans from Colombia are labelled as ‘Supremo’, ‘Excelso’, ‘Extra’ and the lowest grade, ‘Pasilla’.

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In 1763, there were over 200 coffee shops in Venice.

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Caffeine is on the International Olympic Committee list of prohibited substances. Athletes who test positive for more than 12 micrograms of caffeine per millilitre of urine may be banned from the Olympic Games. This level may be reached after drinking about 5 cups of coffee.

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Coffee was first known in  Europe as Arabian Wine.

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It was said that cowboys made their coffee by putting ground coffee into a sock (hopefully a clean one) and immersed it in water heated over a camp fire. When ready, they would pour the coffee into tin cups and drink it.

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A study from the Harvard School of Public Health, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found that women who regularly drink fully caffeinated coffee have a 20% lower risk of depression than non-coffee drinkers. The study, which followed a group of women for 10 years, found that as more coffee was consumed (up to six cups per day), the likelihood of depression decreased.

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There are two major coffee markets in the world. One is in London, which deals with the buying of Robusta coffee. The other is the ‘C’ contract market, known as Coffee, Sugar and Cocoa Exchange (CSCE), which is in New York. It handles the trade of Arabica coffee. The ‘C’ market is also a futures market.

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Finally, can you see the man?

coffee test

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Fifty 50

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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This week’s significant number is fifty, perhaps one of the most used numbers of them all. Maybe we are so used to having it around that we don’t pay it much attention at all.

Until now.

Enjoy.

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The Number 50

50

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In religion

  • The 50th word of the King James Version of the Bible’s Old Testament, Book of Genesis is “light”;
  • There are 50 chapters in the book of Genesis in the Old Testament;
  • Noah’s Ark was 50 cubits in width. “The length of the ark shall be 300 cubits, the breadth of it 50 cubits, and the height of it 30 cubits.” (Genesis, VI.15);

noahs ark

  • Pentecost in Greek means “50th”;
  • Pentecost is a Jewish summer feast held on the 50th day after the Passover;
  • Pentecost is also called Whitsunday, a Christian feast, which commemorates the Descent of the Holy Ghost upon the Apostles, 50 days after Easter (Resurrection of Christ);
  • 50 is also said to be one of the holiest numbers, being the sum of the squares of the sacred Pythagorean 3-4-5 triangle, i.e., 9 + 16 + 25 = 50;
  • In Kabbalah, there are 50 Gates of Wisdom (or Understanding) and 50 Gates of Impurity;
  • The traditional number of years in a jubilee period.

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In science and technology

  • 50 is the Atomic Number of Tin (Sn) (one of the seven metals of the alchemists).
  • 50 is the fifth magic number in nuclear physics.

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In space

  • Open star cluster Messier 50

Open star cluster Messier 50

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  • 50th Space Wing
  • The 50th Space Wing (50 SW) is a wing of the United States Air Force under the major command of Air Force Space Command (AFSPC). It was activated on 30 January 1992, replacing the 2nd Space Wing, which was inactivated on the same date.
  • The unit is the host wing at Schriever Air Force Base, located east of Colorado Springs, Colorado. Their primary responsibility is to track and maintain the command and control, warning, navigational, and communications satellites for AFSPC. The 50th Space Wing also manages the Global Positioning System.
  • Typical satellite monitoring tasks such as tracking and telemetry are the main part of their mission, and in so doing, they employ more than 5600 personnel (active duty military, guard and reserve, contractors, and DoD civilians.)

50th Space Wing insignia

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In politics

  • Hawaii was the 50th state to enter the union in 1960;
  • There are now 50 stars on the flag of the United States of America, each representing one of the 50 states. The stars are arranged in 9 rows staggered horizontally and 11 rows staggered vertically. Diagonally they are:    1 + 3 + 5 + 7 + 9 + 9 + 7 + 5 + 3 + 1 = 50.

stars and stripes .

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In sport

  • The jersey number 50 has been retired by a number of North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other figures.
  • In Major League Baseball: the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, for coach Jimmie Reese, who served with the team when it was known as the California Angels.
coach Jimmie Reese  California Angels
coach Jimmie Reese California Angels
  • In the NBA: the San Antonio Spurs, for Hall of Famer David Robinson.
San Antonio Spurs Hall of Famer David Robinson
San Antonio Spurs Hall of Famer David Robinson
  • In the NFL: the New York Giants, for Hall of Famer Ken Strong.
New York Giants Hall of Famer Ken Strong
New York Giants Hall of Famer Ken Strong
  • No NHL team has retired the number, which is not frequently issued.
  • Bill Barilko, was a hockey player whose final goal won the Toronto Maple Leafs the Stanley Cup. Four months and 5 days after he scored the winning goal to clinch Toronto’s seventh Stanley Cup, Barilko boarded a Fairchild 24, single-engine plane piloted by his friend Henry Hudson. He was returning home to Timmins from a fishing trip on James Bay. The plane vanished between Rupert House and Timmins. No trace of Hudson, Barilko or the Fairchild was discovered for 11 years, despite massive search efforts. The Maple Leafs were so distraught and unwilling to accept the tragedy that Barilko’s equipment remained in his usual locker room stall at the opening of the 1951 fall training camp. Rumors began circulating that Barilko, of Russian decent, had defected to the Soviet Union to teach his skills to young Soviet players. Finally on June 9, 1962, bush pilot Gary Fields came upon the wreck of a Fairchild 24, approximately 100 kilometers north of Cochrane, Ontario. Barilko was finally laid to rest in Timmins; the year that the Leafs won their first Stanley Cup since his disappearance 11 years earlier.
  • The story of Barilko’s 1951 Stanley Cup heroics and his mysterious disappearance were the inspiration for The Tragically Hip song “Fifty Mission Cap”. The song appeared on the Canadian band’s third full-length album Fully Completely, and is often credited with reintroducing Barilko’s story to a younger generation.

Bill Barilko Toronto Maple Leafs

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In militaria

  • Sukhoi T-50
  • The Sukhoi PAK FA  is a twin-engine jet fighter being developed by Sukhoi for the Russian Air Force. The Sukhoi T-50 is the prototype for PAK FA.
  • The PAK FA is one of only a handful of stealth jet programs globally.

Sukhoi Pak Fa T-50 Fifth-Generation Fighter Jet

  • The PAK FA, a fifth generation jet fighter, is intended to be the successor to the MiG-29 and Su-27 in the Russian inventory and serve as the basis of the Sukhoi/HAL FGFA being developed with India.
  • The T-50 prototype performed its first flight 29 January 2010.
  • By 31 August 2010, it had made 17 flights and by mid-November, 40 in total. The second T-50 was to start its flight test by the end of 2010, but this was delayed until March 2011.
  • The Russian Defence Ministry will purchase the first 10 evaluation example aircraft after 2012 and then 60 production standard aircraft after 2016.
  • The first batch of fighters will be delivered with current technology engines.
  • The PAK-FA is expected to have a service life of about 30–35 years.

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  • T-50 light infantry tank
  • The T-50 light infantry tank was built by the Soviet Union at the beginning of World War II. However it was complicated and expensive, and only a short production run of 69 tanks was completed. Furthermore, even before it was ready for mass-production wartime experience invalidated the underlying concept of light tanks.

T50_parola

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  • MKE T 50
  • The HK33 is a 5.56mm assault rifle developed in the 1960s by West German armament manufacturer Heckler & Koch GmbH (H&K), primarily for export.
  • Capitalizing on the success of their G3 design, the company developed a family of small arms (all using the G3 operating principle and basic design concept) consisting of four types of firearms: the first type, chambered in 7.62x51mm NATO, the second—using the Soviet 7.62x39mm M43 round, third—the intermediate 5.56x45mm caliber and the fourth type—chambered for the 9x19mm Parabellum pistol cartridge.
  • The HK33 series of rifles were adopted by the Brazilian Air Force (Força Aérea Brasileira or FAB), the armed forces of Thailand and Malaysia where they were produced under a license agreement. The rifle was also license-built in France by MAS and in Turkey by MKEK. The HK33 is no longer manufactured or marketed by Heckler & Koch.

MKE-T50.

 

  • M107
  • The M107, with a family of ammunition, enables sniper teams to employ greater destructive force at greater ranges and complements the anti-personnel precision fire capability of the M24 (7.62mm, bolt action) Sniper Weapon System (SWS).
  • The primary mission of this rifle is to engage and defeat materiel targets at extended ranges to include parked aircraft; command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) sites; radar sites; ammunition; petroleum, oil and lubricants; and various other thin skinned (lightly armored) materiel targets out to 2000 meters.
  • The M107 can also be used in a counter sniper role taking advantage of the longer stand off range and increased terminal effect when opposing snipers armed with smaller caliber weapons out to 1000 meters.
  • It is a semi-automatic, air-cooled, box magazine-fed rifle chambered for .50 caliber ammunition and with a 10-round removable magazine. This rifle operates by means of the short recoil principle, rather than gas.

M107_1

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  • Browning M2 .50 caliber (12.7mm) Machine Gun
  • The Browning M2 .50 caliber (12.7mm) Machine Gun, is an iconic World War II era automatic, belt-fed, recoil operated, air-cooled, crew-operated machine gun. It is currently fielded by 20 different militaries around the world.
  • The M2 machine gun is crew transportable with limited amounts of ammunition over short distances. The M2 HB machine gun is used to engage dismounted infantry, crew-served weapons, ATGM teams, light-armor vehicles, and aircraft.
  • It fires from the closed-bolt position and is belt fed, recoil operated, air cooled, and crew operated. By repositioning some of the component parts, ammunition may be fed from either the left or right side. A disintegrating metallic link-belt is used to feed the ammunition into the weapon. The gun is capable of single-shot (ground M2), as well as automatic fire.  The AN/TVS-5 night-vision sight can be used with the M2 machine gun.

Browning 50 caliber M2 M2HB

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  • Howdah Hunter
  • During the first British colony government period in India, starting from 1840, the Howdah pistols were preferred by the army officers detached in the widest territories of the Empire.
  • It is a classic large caliber double barrel pistol in the English gunsmith school style, used at close range to stop tigers which commonly leaped upon elephants carrying hunters in a Howdah in the far away colonial territories.
  • It is normally finished with blued barrels, engraved locks featuring wide animals in their natural habitat, and case hardened color finish. The walnut pistol grip stock is checkered and finished with a steel butt cap. Barrel Length 11 1/4″. Weight 4.41 lbs. (20 ga), 5.07 lbs. (.50)

Howdah 50cal

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  • Desert Eagle
  • Although an American idea, the “Desert Eagle” was developed in Israel by the IMI (Israel Military Industries) in the early 1980s. The first Desert Eagles were manufactured in Israel and started appearing on gun dealers’ shelves in the US around 1985. Following a problem in meeting demand for the pistols in 1992 (and probably fearful of the prospect of government import limitations), Magnum Research started assembling parts of the gun in the US and currently is working toward full assembly and possibly manufacture of the guns stateside.
  • Given the fact that the IMI is best known for the Uzi series of submachine guns and the Galil rifles, it isn’t surprising that the Desert Eagle departs radically from many other semi auto pistol designs, though the exterior belays this. The basic layout is like that of most other modern semi auto pistols (with the magazine release on the side of the grip, slide release on the left side of the frame, and a thumb-activated slide safety).
  • Internally it is different. The pistol is gas-operated with a system that is more like a rifle than the delayed blow-back systems used with most other semi auto hand guns. The gas system employs a fixed, shrouded barrel which stays in position on the frame during firing, with gas coming up a port just ahead of the chamber to operate a three-lug rotating bolt that rides in the slide assembly. The fixed barrel gives the gun a lot of potential accuracy, a potential realized with most of these pistols when fired with quality ammunition.
  • In addition to .357 Magnum, .41 AE, .41 Magnum, and .44 Magnum chamberings, the Desert Eagle is also available chambered for the .50 AE (Action Express).

50 cal Desert Eagle

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  • The Smith & Wesson 50 calibre Revolver
  • Billed by Smith & Wesson as the most Powerful Production Revolver in the World Today, this S&W revolve uses the massive .500 S&W Magnum® Cartridge with 2600 ft/lb. Muzzle Energy.
  • It is designed as a hunting handgun for any game animal walking.

Smith& Wesson magnum_50cal

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In books, tv, movies and music

  • The TV show Hawaii Five-O and its reimagined version, Hawaii Five-0, are so called because Hawaii is the last (50th) of the states to officially become a state.

Hawaii Five-0 Then And Now

  • From the tv show, the term 5-O (Five-Oh) has become slang for police officers and/or a warning that police are approaching. Derived from the television show Hawaii Five-O
  • 50 First Dates. A Groundhog Day type of movie starring Adam Sandler as Henry Roth, a man afraid of commitment up until he meets the beautiful Lucy. They hit it off and Henry think he’s finally found the girl of his dreams, until he discovers she has short-term memory loss and forgets him the very next day.
  • 50/50. Inspired by a true story, a comedy centered on a 27-year-old guy who learns of his cancer diagnosis, and his subsequent struggle to beat the disease.
  • Fifty shades of grey, the mummy-porn novel that became a huge seller in 2012
  • Nickname of famous hip hop / rap legend 50 Cent.
  • Paul Simon 50 ways to leave your lover
  • 50 Ways To Say Goodbye by Train
  • Train frontman Pat Monahan penned this song with Espionage, the Norwegian production duo that helped pen “Hey Soul Sister.”
  • Espionage is made up of Espen Lind and Amund Bjørklund and amongst their other credits are Beyoncé’s “Irreplaceable” and Chris Brown’s “With You.”
  • The song follows a similar theme to Paul Simon’s “50 Ways To Leave Your Lover,” though in this instance it’s the narrator’s pride that has been hurt as he looks for excuses to tell his friends why she’s disappeared from his life.
  • 50 Words For Snow Kate Bush
  • 50 Words For Snow comprises seven songs “set against a background of falling snow.” The album was released through the singer’s personal imprint, Fish People.
  • Speaking to American radio station KCRW, Bush said that the idea for this song came from thinking about the myth that the Inuit Eskimos have 50 words for snow. She then decided to make up increasingly fantastical words herself, and recruited actor and writer Stephen Fry to recite the 50 synonyms. They include such words/phrases as “spangladasha,” “mountain-sob, “blown from Polar fur,” and “shimmer-glisten.”
  • Whilst the Inuit did have about as many words for snow as the English (and now a lot less after Bush’s verbal creations for the frozen precipitation), the Sami in Finland have in excess of 50.

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In other stuff

  • Cities located on latitude 50 degrees north include Cologne and Frankfurt, Germany; Brussels, Belgium; Maastricht, Netherlands; Portsmouth, Exeter, Plymouth and Brighton & Hove, England; Regina, Saskatchewan, and Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada; Kiev, Ukraine; Prague, Czech Republic; Kraków, Poland; and Kharkov, Ukraine.
  • Cities located on longitude 50 degrees west include Assis, São Paulo, Brazil.
  • Cities located on longitude 50 degrees east include Dammam, Saudi Arabia; Samara, Russia; and Manama, Bahrain.
  • The percentage (50%) equivalent to one half, so that the phrase “fifty-fifty” commonly expresses something divided equally in two; in business this is often denoted as being the ultimate in equal partnership.
  • In millimeters, the focal length of the normal lens in 35 mm photography.
  • Gold wedding anniversary celebrates 50 years of marriage.
  • The Roman numeral for 50 is L.
  • A Canadian brand of beer called 50 Ale created in 1950 by Labatt breweries to commemorate 50 years of partnership. It is a popular brand still sold today.
  • The speed limit, in kilometers per hour, of Australian roads with unspecified limits.
  • Jason and 50 Argonauts sailed on the ship Argo on a quest for the Golden Fleece in Colchis (Black Sea).
  • Tineke Hybrid Tea Rose has 50 double broad petals.

Tineke Hybrid Tea Rose.

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Significant Number Factoid Friday – Today The Number Is Twenty-One 21

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Today a number that many people like and hold to be ‘lucky’.

The Number 21

21

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In religion

  • Number of the perfection by excellence, 3 x 7, according to the Bible.
  • 21 represents the harmony of the creation.
  • Mary, mother of Jesus, lived 21 years after the death Jesus
  • There were 21 years between the presentation of Jesus to the Temple at 12 years old and his death at 33 years old.
  • In the same day, Jesus appears in 21 different places in Palestine to confirm in His Resurrection.
  • The word angel is pronounced 21 times by Jesus, always to the plural.
  • The words Flood and star are used 21 times in the Bible.
  • In the Revelation, the word “capacity” (capacity of decision or to act, by opposition to “power”) is used 21 times.

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In mathematics

21 is a Triangular, Octagonal, Fibonacci, and Motzkin Number.

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In science & technology

  • The Chemical Element Scandium has an atomic number of 21.
  • There are 21 amino-acids.
  • 21 is the standard TCP/IP port number for FTP connections

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In space and aviation

  • Messier 21 or M21
  • Messier 21 or M21 (also designated NGC 6531) is an open cluster of stars in the constellation of Sagittarius. It was discovered and catalogued by Charles Messier on June 5, 1764.
  •  It is tightly packed but contains about 57 stars. A few blue giant stars have been identified in the cluster, but Messier 21 is composed mainly of small dim stars. With a magnitude of 6.5, M21 is not visible to the naked eye; however, with the smallest binoculars it can be easily spotted on a dark night.

 trifid nebula messier 21

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  • Expedition 21
  • Expedition 21 was the 21st long-duration mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The expedition began on 30 September 2009, with Frank de Winne becoming the first ESA astronaut to command a space mission.

expedition 21 insignia

  • The handover between Expedition 20 and Expedition 21 required three Soyuz vehicles being docked to the station at the same time, the first time this has occurred.
  • Soyuz TMA-16 brought the final members of Expedition 21 to the ISS, along with space tourist Guy Laliberté. Laliberté returned to Earth on Soyuz TMA-14 with two members of Expedition 20 on 11 October 2009.
  • Nicole P. Stott was the last ISS expedition crew member to fly on the Space Shuttle. She returned to Earth aboard STS-129 in November 2009.
Expedition 21
Expedition 21 crew portrait (from the left) are Flight Engineers Nicole Stott, Frank De Winne and Roman Romanenko. Pictured on the back row (from the left) are Flight Engineer Maxim Suraev, Commander Jeffrey Williams and Flight Engineer Robert Thirsk. Image credit: NASA

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  • Luna 21
  • Luna 21 (Ye-8 series) was an unmanned space mission of the Luna program, also called Lunik 21. The spacecraft landed on the Moon and deployed the second Soviet lunar rover (Lunokhod 2). The primary objectives of the mission were to collect images of the lunar surface, examine ambient light levels to determine the feasibility of astronomical observations from the Moon, perform laser ranging experiments from Earth, observe solar X-rays, measure local magnetic fields, and study mechanical properties of the lunar surface material.

V Pennant Luna 21

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  • Number 21
  • Number 21 is the name of the plane alleged flown by Gustave Whitehead two years before the Wright brothers’ flight

 

 

In politics

  • 21st President of the United States
  • Chester Alan Arthur (October 5, 1829 – November 18, 1886) was the 21st President of the United States (1881–85). He became President after the assassination of President James A. Garfield.
  • Born in Fairfield, Vermont, Arthur grew up in upstate New York and practiced law in New York City. He devoted much of his time to Republican politics and quickly rose in the political machine run by New York Senator Roscoe Conkling.
  • Appointed by President Ulysses S. Grant to the lucrative and politically powerful post of Collector of the Port of New York in 1871, Arthur was an important supporter of Conkling and the Stalwart faction of the Republican Party.
  • In 1878 the new president, Rutherford B. Hayes, fired Arthur as part of a plan to reform the federal patronage system in New York. When James Garfield won the Republican nomination for President in 1880, Arthur was nominated for Vice President to balance the ticket by adding an eastern Stalwart to it.
  • After just half a year as vice president, Garfield was assassinated and Arthur unexpectedly became the 21st President of the united states.
  • To the surprise of reformers, Arthur took up the reform cause that had once led to his expulsion from office. He signed the Pendleton Act into law, and enforced its provisions vigorously.
  • Suffering from poor health, Arthur made only a limited effort to secure renomination in 1884; he retired at the close of his term. As journalist Alexander McClure would later write, “No man ever entered the Presidency so profoundly and widely distrusted as Chester Alan Arthur, and no one ever retired … more generally respected, alike by political friend and foe.”
Chester A Arthur
Chester A Arthur, 21st President of the United States of America

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  • 21st Amendment
  • The Twenty-first Amendment to the United States Constitution repealed the Eighteenth Amendment, thereby ending Prohibition.

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  • 21st State
  • Illinois – the ‘Land of Lincoln’ – was the 21st state to join the United States.
  • Abraham Lincoln moved to Illinois when he was 21 and he met his future wife – Mary Todd – in Springfield when she was 21.
  • Illinois currently has 21 electoral votes in the US Presidential Election.

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  • Canada – Pier 21
  • Pier 21 was, from 1928 to 1971, was the place where immigrants entered Canada. It was called the “Gateway to Canada.”

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  • France – King Louis XVI
  • 21 was a significant number in the life of French King Louis XVI
  • On January 21, 1770, Louis XVI became engaged;
  • On June 21, 1770, he got married;
  • On January 21, 1782, he promulgated the suspension of a tax;
  • On January 21, 1784 an enormous obelisk of snow was raised for him on the place Louis XV;
  • On June 21, 1791,  Louis XVI was arrested;  and,
  • On January 21, 1793, he goes up to the scaffold.
  • Finally, the 5 letters of his first name added to XVI gives 21.

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  • Japan-China
  • The Twenty-One Demands were a set of demands which were sent to the Chinese government by the Japanese government of Okuma Shigenobu in 1915.

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  • Poland
  • The 21 Demands of MKS led to the foundation of Solidarity in Poland.

solidarity-logo

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In folklore, legends and mythology

  • The Mayan Calendar
  • December 21st 2012, according to some interpretations of the Mayan calendar was the predicted date of an apocalyptic event: ‘The planets are aligned the sun will activate, let the deluge come’.
  • It turned out to be bollocks though (see also this post)

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  • Ghost Ship 21
  • A ghost ship, also known as a phantom ship, is a ship with no living crew aboard. It may be a ghostly vessel in folklore or fiction, such as the Flying Dutchman, or a real derelict found adrift with its crew missing or dead, like the Mary Celeste. The term is sometimes also used for ships that have been decommissioned but not yet scrapped.
  • There have been many examples throughout history, for example,
  • Undated: The Caleuche is a mythical ghost ship which, according to local folklore and Chilota mythology, sails the seas around Chiloé Island, Chile, at night.
  • 1738 onwards: The Palatine Light, a ship who lost half her crew running aground off Rhode Island, possibly being lured there and pillaged by the locals. Said to appear every December.
  • 1748 onwards: The Lady Lovibond is said to have been deliberately wrecked on Goodwin Sands on 13 February and to reappear off the Kent coast every fifty years.
  • 1786 onwards: The Ghost Ship of Northumberland Strait, a burning ship seen regularly between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
  • 1795 onwards: The Flying Dutchman, a ship manned by a captain condemned to eternally sail the seas, has long been the principal ghost ship legend among mariners and has inspired several works.
  • 1813 onwards: After the American schooner Young Teazer was sunk in an explosion during the War of 1812, a burning apparition known as the “Teazer Light” has been reported off Maine.
  • 1858 onwards: The Eliza Battle, a paddle steamer that burned in 1858 on the Tombigbee River in Alabama, is purported to reappear, fully aflame, on cold and windy winter nights to foretell of impending disaster.
  • 1878 onwards: An apparition has been reported where the HMS Eurydice sank off the Isle of Wight. Witnesses include a Royal Navy submarine in the 1930s and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex, in 1998.
  • 1872 or 1882: The Iron Mountain riverboat, according to legend, mysteriously disappeared while travelling the Mississippi River and left the barges it was towing adrift. In reality, the ship sank in 1882 near Vicksburg after running aground, and its fate was never mysterious.
  • 1928: The København was last heard from on December 28, 1928. For two years following its disappearance sightings of a mysterious five-masted ship fitting its description were reported in the Pacific Ocean.
  • Historically attested
  • 1855: HMS Resolute was discovered drifting off the coast of Baffin Island. It had been one of four vessels from Edward Belcher’s search expedition for John Franklin that had been abandoned the previous year when it was trapped in pack ice in Viscount Melville Sound. The ship drifted some 1,200 miles (1,900 km) before it was found, freed from the ice.
  • 1872: Amazon (later renamed Mary Celeste). In 1872 the Mary Celeste, perhaps the most historically famous derelict, was found abandoned between mainland Portugal and the Azores archipelago. It was devoid of all crew, but largely intact and under sail, heading toward the Strait of Gibraltar. While Arthur Conan Doyle’s story “J. Habakuk Jephson’s Statement” based on this ship added some strange phenomena to the tale (such as that the tea found in the mess hall was still hot), the fact remained that the last log entry was 11 days prior to the discovery of the ship.
  • 1884: In 1884 the Resolven was found abandoned between Baccalieu Island and Catalina, Newfoundland and Labrador, with its lifeboat missing. Other than a broken yard, it had suffered minimal damage. A large iceberg was sighted nearby. It has been claimed that none of the seven crew members or four passengers were accustomed to northern waters and it was suggested that they panicked when the ship was damaged by ice,[9] launched the lifeboat, and swamped, though no bodies were found. Three years later, Resolven was wrecked while returning to Newfoundland from Nova Scotia with a load of lumber.
  • 1917: Zebrina, a sailing barge, departed Falmouth, England, with a cargo of Swansea coal bound for Saint-Brieuc, France. Two days later she was discovered aground on Rozel Point, south of Cherbourg, without damage except for some disarrangement of her rigging, but with her crew missing.
  • 1921: The Carroll A. Deering, a five-masted cargo schooner, was found stranded on a beach on Diamond Shoals, North Carolina. The ship’s final voyage had been the subject of much debate and controversy, and was investigated by six departments of the US government, largely because it was one of dozens of ships that sank or went missing within a relatively short period of time. While paranormal explanations have been advanced, the theories of mutiny or piracy are considered more likely.
  • 1931: The Baychimo was abandoned in the Arctic Ocean when it became trapped in pack ice and was thought doomed to sink, but remained afloat and was sighted numerous times over the next 38 years without ever being salvaged.
  • 1933: A lifeboat from the 1906 wreck of the passenger steamship SS Valencia off the southwest coast of Vancouver Island was found floating in the area in remarkably good condition 27 years after the sinking. Sailors have also reported seeing the ship itself in the area in the years following the sinking, often as an apparition that followed down the coast.
  • 1955: The MV Joyita was discovered abandoned in the Pacific. A subsequent inquiry found the vessel was in a poor state of repair, but determined the fate of passengers and crew to be “inexplicable on the evidence submitted at the inquiry”.
  • 1959: A ghost submarine was found floating without a crew in the Bay of Biscay off northern Spain. It was later discovered that the empty sub was being towed by another vessel and the chain had snapped.
  • 1969: The Teignmouth Electron was found adrift and unoccupied in the Atlantic Ocean. Investigation led to the conclusion that its sole crewmember, Donald Crowhurst, had suffered a psychiatric breakdown while competing in a solo around-the-world race and committed suicide by jumping overboard.
  • 2003: The High Aim 6 was found drifting in Australian waters, 80 nautical miles (150 km; 92 mi) east of Rowley Shoals, with its crew missing. The derelict was subsequently scuttled.
  • 2006: The tanker Jian Seng was found off the coast of Weipa, Queensland Australia in March. Its origin or owner could not be determined, and its engines had been inoperable for some time.
  • 2006: In August the “Bel Amica” was discovered off the coast of Sardinia. The Coast Guard crew that discovered the ship found half eaten Egyptian meals, French maps of North African seas, and a flag of Luxembourg on board.
  • 2007: A 12-metre catamaran, the Kaz II, was discovered unmanned off the coast of Queensland, northeast Australia in April.[18] The yacht, which had left Airlie Beach on Sunday 15 April, was spotted about 80 nautical miles (150 km) off Townsville, near the outer Great Barrier Reef on the following Wednesday. When boarded on Friday, the engine was running, a laptop was running, the radio and GPS were working and a meal was set to eat, but the three-man crew were not on board. All the sails were up but one was badly shredded, while three life jackets and survival equipment, including an emergency beacon, were found on board. A search for the crew was abandoned on Sunday 22nd as it was considered unlikely that anyone could have survived for that period of time.
  • 2008: The abandoned 50 ton Taiwanese fishing vessel Tai Ching 21 was found drifting near Kiribati on 9 November. The ship had suffered a fire several days previously, and its lifeboat and three life rafts were missing. No mayday call was received, and the ship had last been heard from on 28 October. A search of 21,000 square miles (54,000 square km) of the Pacific Ocean north of Fiji by a US Air Force C-130 Hercules and a New Zealand Air Force P-3 Orion found no trace of the Taiwanese captain or crew (18 Chinese, 6 Indonesians, and 4 Filipinos).
  • 2012: The Ryou-Un Maru, a Japanese fishing vessel swept away by the March 2011 tsunami, was found floating adrift towards Canada after nearly a year at sea, no crew believed to be on board. The vessel was sunk on April 5, 2012 by the United States Coast Guard.

ghost ship 21

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In sports

  • The jersey number 21 has been retired by several North American sports teams in honor of past playing greats or other key figures:
  • In Major League Baseball: the Cleveland Indians, for Hall of Famer Bob Lemon, the Milwaukee Braves, for Hall of Famer Warren Spahn (the number continues to be honored by the team in its current home of Atlanta);  the Pittsburgh Pirates, for Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente (following his death in a plane crash while attempting to deliver humanitarian aid to victims of an earthquake in Nicaragua);

bob lemon

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  • In the NBA: the Atlanta Hawks, for Hall of Famer Dominique Wilkins; the Boston Celtics, for Hall of Famer Bill Sharman; the Detroit Pistons, for Hall of Famer Dave Bing; the Sacramento Kings, for Vlade Divac; the Minnesota Timberwolves have not retired the number, but have not issued it since Kevin Garnett was traded from the team in 2007.

mayor dave bing detroit pistons 21

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  • In the NHL: the Chicago Blackhawks, for Hall of Famer Stan Mikita; the Colorado Avalanche, for likely future Hall of Famer Peter Forsberg; the Pittsburgh Penguins, for Michel Brière; the Toronto Maple Leafs have a policy of not retiring numbers unless the player honored either died or suffered a career-ending incident while a member of the team. Other players whose numbers would otherwise be retired instead have their numbers enshrined by the team as “Honored Numbers”, which remain in circulation for future players. The number 21 is currently honored for Hall of Famer Börje Salming.

stan mikita

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  • No NFL team has retired the number 21.

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  • In basketball: 21 is a variation of street basketball, in which each player, of which there can be any number, plays for himself only (i.e. not part of a team); the name comes from the requisite number of baskets.
  • In 3×3, a formalized version of three-on-three half-court basketball, the game ends by rule once either team has scored 21 points in regulation. Scoring is significantly different from traditional basketball rules, with free throws and baskets made from inside the three-point arc worth 1 point, and baskets made from outside the arc worth 2 points.
  • In badminton, and table tennis (before 2001), 21 points are required to win a game.
  • Eyeshield 21 is a Japanese anime about football.
  • In the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series the number 21 has long been the car number for Wood Brothers Racing

Wood Brothers car 21

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In books, music, tv and movies

  • 21 is the sophomore album from British singer-songwriter Adele, recently acclaimed for her title song for the Bond movie Skyfall.
  • Century 21 Television (producers of Sylvia and Gerry Anderson Supermarionation shows like Thunderbirds and Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons).
  • Cinema 21 is an independently-owned movie theatre in Portland, Oregon featuring art house films. Cinema 21, 616 NW 21st Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97209 USA
  • Cinema 21, is also the name of the largest cinema chain in Indonesia, established in the entertainment industry in 1987.
  • “21” is the fact-based story about six MIT students who were trained to become experts in card counting and subsequently took Vegas casinos for millions in winnings.
  • Wedding In Las Vegas is a docu-drama about a group of students who, using a wedding as a cover story, also defeat the casino’s Blackjack tables using card counting techniques.

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In militaria

  • Mig-21
  • The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21 is a supersonic jet fighter aircraft, designed by the Mikoyan-Gurevich Design Bureau in the Soviet Union. It was popularly nicknamed “balalaika”, from the aircraft’s planform-view resemblance to the Russian stringed musical instrument or olówek (English: pencil) by Polish pilots due to the shape of its fuselage.
  • Early versions are considered second-generation jet fighters, while later versions are considered to be third-generation jet fighters.
  • Some 50 countries over four continents have flown the MiG-21, and it still serves many nations a half-century after its maiden flight. The fighter made aviation records. At least by name, it is the most-produced supersonic jet aircraft in aviation history and the most-produced combat aircraft since the Korean War, and it had the longest production run of a combat aircraft (1959 to 1985 over all variants).

Mig_21_MF_b

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  • IAI Kfir F-21
  • The Israel Aircraft Industries Kfir F-21 is an Israeli-built all-weather, multirole combat aircraft based on a modified French Dassault Mirage 5 airframe, with Israeli avionics and an Israeli-made version of the General Electric J79 turbojet engine.
  • The Kfir entered service with the IAF in 1975, the first units being assigned to the 101st “First Fighter” Squadron. Over the following years, several other squadrons were also equipped with the new aircraft. The role of the Kfir as the IAF’s primary air superiority asset was short-lived, as the first F-15 Eagle fighters from the United States were delivered to Israel in 1976.
  • The Kfir’s first recorded combat action took place on November 9, 1977, during an Israeli air strike on a training camp at Tel Azia, in Lebanon. The only air victory claimed by a Kfir during its service with the IAF occurred on June 27, 1979 when a Kfir C.2 shot down a Syrian MiG-21.
  • Twenty-five modified Kfir C.1s were leased to the US Navy and the US Marine Corps from 1985 to 1989, to act as adversary aircraft in dissimilar air combat training (DACT). These aircraft, designated F-21A Kfir, had narrow-span canard foreplanes and a single small rectangular strake on either side of the nose which considerably improved the aircraft’s maneuverability and handling at low speeds.

Kfir F-21

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  • Blücher 21 cm/45 (8.27″) SK L/45
  • Used afloat only on the Armored Cruiser Blücher which was sunk at the World War I battle of Dogger Bank.  After her sinking, four reserve guns were given to the German Army.
  • During World War II these guns were used as coastal artillery.  They were then supplied with a better ballistically shaped shell and with a larger propellant charge for increased range.
  • Constructed of a tube, two layers of hoops and a jacket.  Used the Krupp horizontal sliding wedge breech block.  About 16 guns were made.

Blucher

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  • 21-K
  • The 45 mm anti-aircraft gun (21-K) was a Soviet design adapted from the 45 mm anti-tank gun M1937 (53-K). This was a copy of a 3.7 cm (1.5 in) German weapon designed by Rheinmetall that was sold to the Soviets before Hitler came to power in 1933 that had been enlarged to 45 mm (1.8 in) in increase its penetrating power.
  • It was used by the Soviet Navy to equip almost all of their ships from 1934 as its primary light anti-aircraft gun until replaced by the fully automatic 37 mm 70-K gun from 1942 to 1943.
  • It was used in World War II and during the Cold War as the Soviets exported their World War II-era ships to their friends and allies.
  • However it was not very effective as its slow rate of fire and lack of a time fuze required a direct hit to damage targets.

21-K-KrasnyyKavkaz1

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  • GAU-21 (M3M)
  • The M3M was designated by the U.S. Navy as the GAU-21 in 2004 and is currently used by all services within the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD).
  • An evolution of the M3 .50-caliber heavy machine gun, it produces a blistering 1,100 rounds per minute cyclic rate of fire through the use of open-bolt operation and a dual recoil buffer system. Operating independent of either electrical or hydraulic power sources, the M3M/GAU-21’s unique soft mount system enhances weapon accuracy and minimizes the firing vibration transmitted to the airframe.
  • FN Herstal has been awarded a solesource U.S. Navy contract to produce the M3M .50 caliber machine guns under the Gun, Aircraft, Unit-21 (GAU-21) designation for Navy and Marine Corps rotary-wing assault aircraft.
  • The FN GAU-21 (M3M) is a .50 caliber (12.7x99mm) single barrel rapid-fire machine gun suitable for rotary-wing aircraft applications providing defensive firepower ranging out to nearly 2000 meters.

gau_21_main

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  • BRNO 21
  • BRNO is neither German nor Austrian (although it was once located in the Austro-Hungarian Empire), but they produced the BRNO model designation 21 and 22 as post-War sporting rifles.

BRNO Model 21

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  • GLOCK 21
  • Almpst an American icon, the Glock 21 is a .45 caliber pistol. Countless law enforcement units swear by this superior pistol for more than just its above-average magazine capacity of 13 rounds.

Glock-21

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  • SIG SAUER® P210®
  • The SIG SAUER® P210®, the timeless pistol of the Swiss Army, is once again in production by SIG SAUER GmbH in Germany. This historic gun features the same precision and reliability as its ancestors, but also offers a number of modern improvements.
  • The return of the SIG SAUER P210 Legend will now ensure that many more shooters will be able to enjoy one of the world’s most accurate and legendary firearms.

sig_p210_b

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  • 21st Century Commander
  • Internally, the 21st Century Commander is classic Colt. The stainless 4.25-inch barrel is rifled in the standard 1:16-inch left-hand twist. Each 21st Century Commander is serialized with a unique number that contains the letters “WC” for Wiley Clapp.

Colt 21st Century Commander

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  • 21 Series Beretta
  • The 21 Series Beretta pocket pistol (Bobcat) has the same dedication to advanced design, uncompromising quality and strict quality control that make the 92F, Cougar and Cheetah such international standouts.
  • It has a user-friendly design, exclusive tip-up barrel allowing the user to easily load a round directly into the chamber or assisting in the safe clearing of the pistol by allowing a live round to be easily removed from the chamber and the bore quickly checked. Jamming and stovepiping problems are virtually eliminated by the open slide design shared by all small frame Berettas.
  • Chambered for .22LR or .25ACP (6.35 mm), this compact, rugged small frame measures just 4.9 inches (125 mm) overall and weighs only 11.5 ounces (325 grams). It features a lightweight, alloy frame, blued steel slide, tip-up barrel, and double/single action. The Bobcat comes with a 7-round magazine for .22LR ammunition, or an 8 round magazine for .25 (6.35 mm)caliber cartridges.

Beretta Mod 21A

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  • Twenty-one Gun Salute
  • Legend has it that Twenty-one guns are fired in U.S. national military salutes because the digits in 1776 add up to 21. However, despite the fact that the year 1776 is deeply significant to Americans and the total of its digits does add up to 21, the legend is untrue because the custom of the 21-gun salute antedates the American Revolution by at least several decades.
  • Also interesting is the fact that, although we now view weaponry salutes as honors proudly bestowed by fighting men upon those of high rank or great achievement, saluting in days long ago was an act of submission; a tangible way of demonstrating that the one performing the action was voluntarily placing himself in the power of the one being saluted. Guns would be emptied a ritual number of times, or sails would be lowered, or spears would be pointed towards the ground, the significance being that those carrying out the act were saying “I yield to your authority, and as proof I’ve just rendered my weapon incapable of being used against you.”
  • Over time the practice evolved into a custom honorary and ceremonial as well as practical. Today’s salute is far more a mark of respect than an act of submission.
  • Cannons became part of weaponry salutes in the 14th century.  A just-emptied cannon was a useless piece of ordnance and so made a fine visible display of the lack of hostile intent. Warships took to firing honorary seven-gun salutes, with that number likely chosen for its astrological and biblical significance. Because those crewing cannons on land had access to far greater supplies of powder, they were able to fire three guns (a number chosen for its mystical significance) for every shot fired afloat, making the honorary salute by shore batteries 21 guns.
  • Eventually, an understanding was reached that the international salute should be established as 21 guns.
  • Today, the national salute of 21 guns is fired in honor of a national flag, the sovereign or chief of state of a foreign nation, a member of a reigning royal family, and the President, ex-President, and President-elect of the United States. It is also fired at noon of the day of the funeral of a President, ex-President, or President-elect; Washington’s Birthday; Presidents’ Day; and the Fourth of July. On Memorial Day, a salute of 21 minute guns (i.e., guns discharged at one-minute intervals) is fired at noon while the flag is flown at half staff.

21-gun-salute

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In other stuff

  • We are currently living in the 21st Century, which spans the years from 2001 to 2100;
  • There are 21 letters in the Italian alphabet;
  • 21 is the number representing the maturity and the responsibility for an individual;
  • In most USA states 21 is the drinking age;
  • In some countries 21 is the voting age;
  • Cities on latitude 21 North include:  Aguascalientes, Cancún, and León, in Mexico; Jeddah, and Mecca in Saudi Arabia; Honolulu, Hawaii; Nagpur, Maharashtra, India; and Hanoi, Vietnam.
  • Cities on latitude 21 South include: Francistown, Botswana; and Nuku’Alofa, Tonga.
  • Cities on longitude 21 West include: Reykjavík, Iceland.
  • Cities on longitude 21 East include: Warsaw, Poland; Pristina, Kosovo; and Skopje, Macedonia.21 is a card game, also called vingt-et-un (French for “twenty-one”), pontoon, or blackjack;
  • Twenty One, was the name of a TV quiz show that ran from 1956 to 1958, most remembered for the scandal that the wins were fixed – it was remade in 2000;
  • There are 21 spots on a standard cubical (six-sided) die (1+2+3+4+5+6);
  • There are 21 trump cards of the tarot deck if one does not consider The Fool to be a proper trump card;
  • In Israel, the number is associated with the profile 21 (the military profile designation granting an exemption from the military service);
  • 21 grams is the weight of the soul, according to research by Duncan MacDougall;
  • 21 is the designation of a US Highway connecting Wytheville, Virginia and Beaufort, South Carolina, a truncation of a route that once connected Cleveland, Ohio and Jacksonville, Florida, among other highways past and present;
  • 21 is the number of the French department Côte-d’Or;
  • In France XXI is a journal devoted to long-form journalism;
  • ’21’ is a landmark New York restaurant perfectly positioned in midtown Manhattan;
  • Forever 21 is an American chain of clothing retailers with branches in major cities in the Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East that offers trendy clothing and accessories for young women, men, and girls at low, affordable prices.

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What Do Stupid Politicians And Bureaucrats Make? Yes, That’s Right – Stupid Laws

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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If you were ever in any doubt, let me assure you that when you elect morons to positions where they can legislate for the rest of us then you are assured that they will spend their time and our money making stupid laws, rules and regulations.

It happens in every country and in every state in every country. Such is the horrendous scale of the problem that I would be blogging forever if I tried to highlight worldwide stupidity, so as an example let’s look at some of the lesser known laws that govern citizens in the United States of America (I will list them state by state alphabetically. Part one today is A to L).

Enjoy (or cringe, perhaps).

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ALABAMA

  • It is considered an offense to open an umbrella on a street, for fear of spooking horses. 
  • In Alabama, it is against the law to wear a fake mustache that could cause laughter in the church. 
  • A voter spending more than four minutes in a voting booth can be asked to hurry up.

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ALASKA

  • No one may tie their pet dog to the roof of a car.
  • A clumsy or unknowledgeable person may not use a ski-lift.
  • Owners of flamingos may not let their pet into barber shops.
  • It is a crime to deceive a machine.

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ARIZONA

  • Hunting camels is prohibited.
  • It is illegal to buy a human egg in order to clone yourself.
  • You may not leave a fishing pole unattended.
  • Donkeys cannot sleep in bathtubs.
  • You may not have more than two dildos in a house.

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ARKANSAS

  • A man can legally beat his wife, but not more than once a month. (Ridiculous idea!)
  • Dogs may not bark after 6 PM. (How about a “woof”?) 
  • It is against the law to own a dangerous cat.

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CALFORNIA

  • The Shell Egg Advisory Committee must have seven members.
  • City Council order reads: “No dog shall be in a public place without its master on a leash.” (A little bit of role reversal there.)
  • In Chino, testing a nuclear device within the city limits is prohibited.
  • Ice cream may not be eaten while standing on the sidewalk. (Repealed when Clint Eastwood took the chair – as mayor, I mean)
  • If you are selling your house you must warn potential buyers if the house is thought to be haunted.

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COLORADO

  • It is illegal to permit ones llama to graze on city property. (I’m so cross I could spit!)
  • It is unlawful to lend your vacuum cleaner to your next-door neighbor. (Quite right too, let them wallow in their filth and bring the whole neighborhood image down.)

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CONNECTICUT

  • In order for a pickle to officially be considered a pickle, it must bounce.
  • Selling a spool of thread without first stating its length is subject to a penalty of up to three months in prison.
  • It is unlawful to walk backwards after sunset. (And just plain dumb to do it in daylight.)
  • It is illegal to sell milk from skinny cows.
  • You may not educate dogs. (Or legislators, it seems!)
  • It is illegal for a man to kiss his wife on Sunday.

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DELAWARE

  • No person shall pretend to sleep on a bench on the boardwalk. (But actually sleeping is okay?)
  • One may not whisper in church. (But if we talk loudly won’t it disrupt the Service?)

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FLORIDA

  • Doors of all public buildings must open outwards. (Pushist legislation if ever I saw it.)
  • It is illegal for female hot dog stand attendants to wear G-strings. 
  • A special law prohibits unmarried women from parachuting on Sunday or she shall risk arrest, fine, and/or jailing.
  • In West Palm Beach it is a crime to hang a carpet in public.
  • Having sexual relations with a porcupine is illegal. (And bloody dangerous I would imagine!)
  • You may not kiss your wife’s breasts. (But someone else’s wife is okay?)

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GEORGIA

  • It is a crime to sell your child off to a circus. 
  • The term “sadomasochistic abuse” is defined so broadly, that it could possibly be applied to a person handcuffing another in a clown suit.
  • It is illegal to use profanity in front of a dead body which lies in a funeral home or in a coroners office. (FFS, oops!)
  • No one may carry an ice cream cone in their back pocket if it is Sunday. (Don’t they mean “a Sundae”?)
  • One is not permitted to noodle a fish. (I don’t know what this means but it sounds a bit pervy.)
  • Donkeys may not be kept in bathtubs. (There it is again, what’s going on?)
  • All citizens must own a rake. (Leaf us alone!)

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HAWAII

  • All residents may be fined as a result of not owning a boat. (Canoe believe this one?)
  • In Maui County building an atomic bomb is subject to a fine.
  • Coins are not allowed to be placed in one’s ears. (They’ll have to make change here.)

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IDAHO

  • It is illegal for a man to give his sweetheart a box of candy weighing less than fifty pounds.
  • You may not fish on a camel’s back. (I take the hump at that rule.)
  • Cannibalism is prohibited unless under life threatening situations. 
  • Residents may not fish from a giraffe’s back. (They’ve got some neck on them!)
  • It is a crime for anyone who is not blind to use a white cane.
  • A person may not be seen in public without a smile on their face. (Another good reason for reading the fasab blog!)

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ILLINOIS

  • You may be arrested for vagrancy if you do not have at least one dollar bill on your person. (The buck stops here.)
  • The English language is not to be spoken. (That’s becoming more and more true of a lot of states in the US)
  • In Minooka it is illegal to “suffer any bitch or slut”
  • One may not pee in his neighbor’s mouth. (Just how much of this was going on that they thought they needed a law against it? Or is someone just taking the piss??)
  • Law forbids eating in a place that is on fire. (The hell with that.)
  • In Joliet the word “Joliet” must be pronounced properly, with the accent on the first syllable.
  • It is illegal to give a dog whiskey. (What a waste, I wouldn’t dream of it.)
  • In the Pullman area, it is illegal to drink beer out of a bucket while sitting on the curb. (There goes a good night out!)
  • It is against the law to sell a smelly mattress. 
  • Humming on public streets is prohibited on Sundays. (I guess I’ll have to take a bath Saturdays in Illinois.)
  • Wheelbarrows with For-Sale signs may not be chained to trees.

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INDIANA

  • Hotel sheets must be exactly 99 inches long and 81 inches wide. (Even for single beds?)
  • Stupefying fish is against the law.
  • The value of Pi is 3. (No it isn’t.)
  • It is illegal for a man to be sexually aroused in public. (That a hard one – to enforce I mean!)
  • Baths may not be taken between the months of October and March. (Definitely have to remember to stay out of Illinois then.)
  • Possessing a weapon of mass destruction is against the law.
  • It is against the law to pass a horse on the street. (Even if it is coming from the other direction?)

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IOWA

  • A man with a moustache may never kiss a woman in public.
  • It is illegal to catch more than 48 frogs in one day.
  • One-armed piano players must perform for free.
  • Within the city limits of Ottumwa, a man may not wink at any woman he does not know.

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KANSAS

  • Pedestrians crossing the highways at night must wear tail lights. (How illuminating.)
  • It is against the law to modify the weather without a permit.
  • No one may catch fish with his bare hands. 
  • The state game rule prohibits the use of mules to hunt ducks.
  • If two trains meet on the same track, neither shall proceed until the other has passed. (That law will get us nowhere.)
  • No one may sing the alphabet on the streets at night. (What’s the penalty for lettering?)

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KENTUCKY

  • One may not dye a duckling blue and offer it for sale unless more than six are for sale at once.
  • One may not receive anal sex. (No problem.)
  • Nudist colonies must make themselves available for inspection by the local sheriff. 
  • A woman may not buy a hat without her husband’s permission. (So that’s why they went out of fashion.)

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LOUISIANA

  • It is a $500 fine to instruct a pizza delivery man to deliver a pizza to your friend without them knowing.
  • It is illegal to rob a bank and then shoot at the bank teller with a water pistol. (Okay, if I ever do that I’ll use a real gun.)
  • Biting someone with your natural teeth is “simple assault,” while biting someone with your false teeth is “aggravated assault”. (If you have no teeth can you just give them a big suck?)

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It’s Quiz Show Answers Monday

“Fight Against Stupidity And Bureaucracy”

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Yet again we plumb the depths of human stupidity. Yes, it’s Monday and time for more quiz show answers.

Enjoy!

 

 

Q: Name something you bang when it’s not working right           

A: Wall

 

 

Q: Name something you might accidentally leave on all night     

A: Shoes

 

 

Q: Name a famous pig 

A: My mother-in-law

 

 

Q: Name a place you dab perfume on   

A: Tip of tongue

 

 

Q: Name a subject elderly people spend a lot of time discussing           

A: Bingo

 

 

Q: Name a famous group of singers     

A: The Simpsons

 

 

Q: Name a food dieters have dreams about at night       

A: Losing weight

 

 

Q: Name a place where you might see a whole lot of shaking going on   

A: The malted milk factory

 

 

Q: Name a country Americans admire    

A: Europe

 

 

Q: Name a brand of gasoline    

A: Regular

A: Unleaded

A: Ethyl           

 

 

Q: Name a country known for its beautiful beaches        

A: Hawaii

 

 

Q: Name a word or phrase you hear in a tennis game     

A: “Fore”

 

 

Q: Name something books tell you that you can do in 30 days or less    

A: Make a baby

 

 

Q: Name something you wear for protection      

A: Gun 

 

 

Q: Name a famous person named Carey (Carrie, Carrey, etc.)     

A: Carey Bradshaw

 

 

Q: Name something people peek through          

A: Down a lady’s blouse

 

 

Q: Name a Scandinavian country           

A: Australia

 

 

Q: Name a city with a reputation as the sin capital of the world   

A: Sodom

 

 

Q: Name a U.S. President that would look good in a Speedo     

A: Harry S. Truman

 

 

Q: One of the three bears         

A: Yogi

 

 

Q: Name a famous Hogan        

A: The Hogan   

 

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