Daily Content Archive

(as of Friday, November 25, 2016)
Word of the Day

pourboire

Definition:(noun) A relatively small amount of money given for services rendered.
Synonyms:baksheesh, gratuity, tip
Usage: The bellboy waited expectantly, but no pourboire was forthcoming.
Article of the Day

Absolute Zero

The lowest temperature theoretically achievable by a system, absolute zero is the point at which substances possess no thermal energy. In 1848, British physicist Lord Kelvin devised a temperature scale that set absolute zero, or 0°K, at -273.15°C. Although absolute zero is impossible to achieve, scientists have brought some substances within a billionth of a degree of 0°K, inducing in these materials odd quantum effects such as superconductivity. Where is the coldest known place in the universe? More...
This Day in History

Elias Howe Patents a Precursor to the Zipper (1851)

Five years after being granted a patent for the first practical sewing machine, Howe patented his design for a zipper-like garment fastener. However, he never put much effort into marketing this invention, perhaps due to the great success of his sewing machine, and today, credit for the zipper's development is largely given to Whitcomb Judson, who demonstrated his innovative slide-fastener design 42 years later at the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893. How did the zipper get its name? More...
Today's Birthday

Carrie Nation (1846)

Nation was an American temperance advocate with an unorthodox style of destroying saloons with a hatchet while supporters sang hymns. Her passion was likely fueled by her first husband's alcoholism. Though she was successful in focusing public attention on the cause of prohibition, most temperance organizations were hesitant to support her. At 6 feet (1.8 m) tall, Nation was hard to contain and was arrested 30 times before declining health forced her retirement. How did she pay her fines? More...
Quotation of the Day
A prisoner...is unfortunate in two ways—because he has done something wrong and because he is deprived of his liberty. Therefore we should treat him kindly, because of his misfortune, for otherwise he would become hard and bitter and would not be sorry he had done wrong.

L. Frank Baum (1856-1919)

Today's Holiday

Manger Yam (2017)

Manger Yam is a harvest celebration of the yam crop observed in Haiti. It is considered taboo to eat any of the new yams before the festival for fear of falling ill or bringing ruin to the yam crop. In Vodoun belief, it is very important for people to maintain relationships with the dead, as well as with each other and the gods, so the deceased are included in the Manger Yam. In the Vodoun service, the priest or priestess leads prayers to the dead and to the gods and offers the first yams to them. After the ceremony, people feast on yam dishes and enjoy music and dancing. More...
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