Posted in Blind Corner Cabinets, Lazy Susan, Who Knew

Lazy Susan and it’s predecessor The Dumb Waiter

I have a Chinese penpal through Google Buzz. Every so often he will question what I am talking about when I use a word to describe something. I once referred to something amazing by using the slang pejorative “crazy”. The word “crazy” in English has multiple meanings. Besides a derogative way to describe a psychological disorder, “crazy” can also serve as a quick descriptive word to describe something astonishing or awesome in a good way. 


This literal translation of words got me to thinking of the cabinet accessory Lazy Susan. Have you ever wondered how this round tray kitchen accessory got it’s name? Why not the Lazy Heather or Lazy Kimberly? I always felt silly referring to this accessory as a Lazy Susan. Every woman I have known named Susan has been smart as a whip, funny, and very intelligent. So where in the world did the Lazy Susan get it name? There is nothing lazy about this round tray device on ball bearings. But it is even sillier to describe it as a double duty round spinning tray on ball bearings. Obviously for the sake of clear communication, referring to this ball bearing wonder tray as a “Lazy Susan” seems to be a term everyone knows and understands. I don’t see us shortening the name anytime soon to L.S. or anything else.  For the full history of the Lazy Susan I will refer you to the well researched article written by Michael Quinion at the bottom of this commentary. It’s a very good article you must read if you have ever obsessed over the word Lazy Susan. 

Americans seem to have a habit of shortening our words for some reason. Are we in such a hurry that we have no time to use our words properly? Have we just become “lazy” in using proper words? My pet peeve is the use of “my bad” as a way of saying “I’m sorry, I’ve made a terrible mistake and I am using the word “my bad” to be cute and a smart ass.” Who started this horrible phrase? 


Shortening words is clearly a trend everywhere. My bank, Washington Mutual, referred to itself as WAMU in it’s marketing, although it was bought by another bank and is now known as Chase. Short enough, I can’t imagine how Chase would shorten it’s name. Big C. NO! Too many double entendres will erupt and not in a good way. Kentucky Fried Chicken also refers itself in commercials as KFC. I guess it’s one way companies try to keep up with it’s hipper customers? For example, mention the name P Diddy, and everyone knows who this is. Mention the name Sean John Combs and you might get a blank stare from the older crowd.  


Motel 6 recently came out with a new commercial that picked up on this trend of shortening words. Did anyone hear it? It’s very funny and makes fun of our lazy habit of shortening words in order to appear hipper and cool. Motel 6 may be best known for a series of humorous radio and television ads featuring the folksy voice of writer and National Public Radio commentator Tom Bodett, with the tagline “We’ll leave the light on for you”. 


Links: 
http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-laz1.htm

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Posted in Happenings around the Blog, Who Knew

Remember Chelsea King

Since last Friday, my stomach has been tied in knots hoping for a miracle for Chelsea King. Chelsea was last seen Thursday, Feb. 25. before heading out for a run after school. Her car was found at the Rancho Bernardo Glassman Community Park. Her cell phone, iPod and school clothes were found inside the car.
Source: “Strong Likelihood” Body Found Is Chelsea’s | NBC San Diego

News reports state that a body likely to be 17 year old Chelsea King was found in a shallow grave near a tributary about 15 feet from the southern shore of Lake Hodges. 
Speaking about faucets, fashion and anything else seems trivial right now when I really wish it was possible to reverse time and make the tragedies of the past week go away. Speaking to friends about this, I find that people either want to tighten up their security and warn their loved ones not to walk alone and take protective measures to be safe. Others could not fathom changing their habits of giving up their hobby of jogging trails or running in parks. The fact is we live in a society where monsters are allowed to live amongst  us. All you have to do is look up a map of registered offenders to see where they live and read all about their convictions to see what these animals are into.  Experts say that sexual offenders can never be rehabilitated. The animal who took Chelsea’s life has a history of sexual attacks and was jailed for it. Why was he let out in the first place? This outrages me to no end. And don’t fall into a sense of complacency because there are no sex offenders on your block. These creeps are on the loose. The bastard who took Chelsea’s life was registered with a home address 75 miles away but stayed in the neighborhood where Chelsea regularly went for her long distance runs.   
Here are the usual tips to stay safe listed at the bottom of this post taken from familywatchdog.com. But I think we need to go further in taking proactive measures. Chelsea left her phone in her car and even if she did have it on her she might not have been in cell phone range to get a signal or she might have already been in harms way to even get a chance to call for help. 
So what can we do and what can our kids do if facing a situation where we are in potential danger and alone? What about GPS tracking that can be attached to clothing? A GPS watch perhaps. What about safety alarms that can be attached to sports wear, socks or shoes that can let out a blaring horn to scare off potential attackers? Are there personal silent alarms that we could trigger, unnoticed by an attacker, that would transmit a GPS signal when in danger? There has to be better ways to stay safe and keep our loved ones safein our daily lives. Let’s face it, sex offenders will always be around us, and there will be times when our kids will be in unsafe situations. There has to be better ways to keep out loved ones safe. 




tips to stay safe

Parents

  • Always know where your children are.
  • Put your children’s emergency identification (name, address, phone number) on their clothes.
  • Teach your children your home phone number and to how call 911 if there is an emergency.
  • Agree on a specific time when children must return home.
  • Contact law enforcement authorities immediately if there is any suspicious or unlawful activity.
  • Purchase and watch The Safe Side video with your children.

Children

  • Always tell your parents where you are going.
  • Never enter any home without getting your parent’s permission first.
  • Never get into any vehicle, unless your parents know and have said it’s OK.
  • Always wear reflective clothing at night.
  • Never approach any house that is not well lit.
  • Remember anything weird that an adult says or does to you and tell your parents immediately.
  • Run away from people who offer you candy or other treats or want you to help look for their puppy or kitten.
  • Scream, run and fight if anyone tries to grab you or make you to go with them.
  • Don’t play in areas that you are unfamiliar with.
  • Stay on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk, always walk facing traffic.

    
Posted in Hot Topics, Kitchen Trends, Who Knew

Can you get sued for bad taste?

 
Gramercy Park Hotel lobby

The short answer is yes! You can get sued for bad taste. When you scroll the website of New York City’s Luxury Hotel, Gramercy Park, you immediately get a sense of luxury with photos showing luxuriously appointed rooms and private residences with custom designed bathrooms and kitchens by British designer John Pawson.

If the stellar photos are not enough, quotes from reputable publications flash on the web page confirming that this is the place of true luxury. 

“TRULY GRAND COMFORT RULES”, The New York Times
“CHIC SENSUALITY”, Travel & Liesure
“RAISING THE BAR”, Vogue
“UNIQUE, Another Lifestyle Revolution” Time Magazine
“IAN SCHRAGER’S NEWEST MASTERPIECE”, Hospitality Magazine

 And then there is the case of power couple, Jon Asgeir Johannesson and Ingibjorg Palmadottir, owners of a swanky New York apartment, (one of the twenty three private residences), located on a full floor in the Gramercy Park Hotel Building. I was tipped off about this story by Sara Blask, who writes for the informative Oyster Blog, Insights from the Hotel Authority. Apparently the couple, hit by hard times, decided to save a buck and install Ikea Cabinets in their luxury apartment. 

There is more irony to be found in this story, so with no further delay, I will point you towards Sarah Blask’s article:

IKEA doesn’t fly at the Gramercy Park Hotel

Posted in Green Design, Recycling, Who Knew

Reuse, Repurpose, Recycle

Don’t ya love it when you can reuse an object and it actually looks cool? Notice anything familiar on the table? This coffee table uses reclaimed wood from a bowling alley.While no one would ever think high end modern style and bowling have anything in common…

William Stranger’s “Second Life” project proves to be an exception to the rule. Using reclaimed wood from a local LA bowling alley, Stranger has created a number of different and interesting pieces that include a coffee table, bench and diptych. Read the full story at PSFK

Posted in Preventing Kitchen Fires, Who Knew

Hello, Oven? It’s Phone. Now Let’s Get Cooking!

Is technology smarter than we are? Man’s cell phone turns on his oven. For the full story click here.
It has the Maytag authorites, the Fire Marshals and the experts at Consumer’s Report baffled.

Cellphones, which send signals at up to 3 watts, often create electromagnetic interference with baby monitors, computer speakers and car radios, so it’s reasonale to assume that a cell phone can cause your electronic igniter on your oven to “pick up the call.”

Be careful with keeping  electronic equipment too close to your cook top and oven. You may get a phone call and your oven may just pick up!

reference: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/23/nyregion/23about.html

Posted in Consumer Research, Ethics in Blogging, Ethics in Interior Design, Happenings around the Blog, Hot Topics, Who Knew

A Cautionary Tale: Identity Theft on the Internet


Things are not what they appear to be on internet blogs. I send you over to Nicolette’s, “Comfort and Joy” Blog, to read her eye opening experience.

Of Scruples, Scams, Divas, and My Evil Twin

“Oh what a tangled web we weave,
When first we practice to deceive!”

Sir Walter Scott, Marmion, Canto vi. Stanza 17.
Scottish author & novelist (1771 – 1832)

photo credit: Daniel Rozin’s Weave Mirror