Tuesday, May 10, 2016

5 Calico Cat Facts Debunk Common Myths

Calico cats are gorgeously marked felines that are shrouded in myth and mistaken assumptions. Having owned a tortie cat and also a calico, I have learned five cat facts that you should know. What are they?

1. Calico cats are not a different breed. Unlike the Persian, American shorthair or Siamese, the term “calico” refers to the coat coloration. It is therefore not surprising to find an American shorthair calico, a Siamese calico or a British shorthair calico. It is a common misconception that this type of cat is differentiated on the breed level.

2. A tortie cat is not necessarily a calico. Tortoiseshell cats usually feature a coat with black, orange or tan makings. These color markings appear in brindle patterns that circle around the animals’ bodies. A true calico cat features a white basecoat with some of the tortie cat markings. PoC traces these markings back to the Piebald gene (aka the gene responsible for white spotting).

3. Calico cat behavior is not noticeably different from other cats. At face-value it is odd to surmise that the way a tortoiseshell calico cat acts is vastly different from a tabby simply because of the genes that determine its fur pattern. In spite of the urban legend that proclaims calico cats to be sweeter (or more aggressive) than their differently-colored counterparts, genetics and experience do not confirm it.

4. All calico cats are not female. While it is true that the vast majority of calico cats are indeed female — calico colorings are based on the presence of two X chromosomes, whereas a male would require the rare XXY combination — there are some males. Even so, it stands to reason that the cute little calico you see at the animal shelter is most likely a female.

5. Male calico cats are not money-makers. Sarah Hartwell dispels the myths that somehow obtaining male calico cats is a great way to augment the waning 401(k) earnings. Even though a researcher may find these cats to be fascinating test subjects, a breeder has little use for them (if they are fertile), since these felines cannot pass on the genes that determine the calico pattern. They do not even show like other cats, since there is no recognized color class for fanciers with male calicos. Thus, there really is no dollar value to these genetically rare animals.

Why not visit the local animal shelter in search of a calico of your own?

Sources

PoC: “Behavior of a Calico Cat”
Sarah Hartwell: “Mosaicism, Tortie Tomcats and Genetically Impossible Kittens”

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5 Books to Read When You Feel Broke

In the current economic recession, it’s easy to get caught up in the daily frustrations of financial challenges. When jobs are scarce and the cost of basic necessities-food, housing, education, healthcare-are rising high above our financial means, the once trivial irritations of an unexpected bill or credit denial can lead to a deep depression. The smallest setbacks become huge obstacles. We feel like we’re failing. We feel broke.

Thankfully, humans are natural storytellers, and in sharing our stories we form a connection of those who have been through similar trials, or those who can offer guidance during them. Whether fiction or non-fiction, these books can help one put the challenges of financial struggle into perspective.

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls (2005)

The memoir of journalist Jeannette Walls is the story of her nomadic and impoverished upbringing by two parents of questionable sanity. Raised by her father, an intelligent but alcoholic man who rarely held down a job and her mother, an unpredictable woman who called herself an artist, Walls knew poverty in its most dire circumstances. Tired of hunger, and her family’s ramshackle home in Appalachia, she and her siblings each fled to New York City while still teenagers. Walls’ story will remind you that even the most unfortunate poverty can be endured and escaped with strength and perseverance.

Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich (2001)

After a conversation on welfare reform with her editor, journalist Barbara Ehrenreich enters the world of the “working poor” in order to get a sense of what millions of people do every day: work in tedious, exhausting jobs (like waitressing, housekeeping, and retail) for low wages in an attempt to support themselves and their families. The message here is that at some level, the failure is not our own, but with a system that expects employees to live on such meager earnings, and that without change, these circumstances could spread to most of America’s working class.

The Boy Who Harness the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer (2009)

When famine struck Malawi, William Kamkwamba and his family each lived on less than one handful of cornmeal a day. Forced to drop out of school because his father could no longer afford the tuition, Kamkwamba taught himself basic physics and how to build a simple motor from out-of-date library books. When his neighbors laughed at his efforts to build a windmill, Kamkwamba built it anyway and succeeded in bringing electricity and water to his village, eventually becoming a 2007 TED Global Fellow and a student at African Leadership Academy in Johannesburg.

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck (1939)

Set during the worldwide economic downturn of The Great Depression, the novel follows the suffering of the Joad family as they travel from their Oklahoma farm, on which they have defaulted on their loans following the destruction of their crops the Dust Bowl, to California, where the pamphlets distributed to people in the plains have promised them high-paying jobs and a better life. The suffering of the Joad family is arduous, and common among so many people during that depression, and yet at the end of the novel, they are still enduring, still fighting. As history tells us, the world did get better, and so it will again, if we can continue to endure.

The Art of Happiness: A Handbook for Living by His Holiness Dalai Lama and Howard C. Cutler (1998)

Despite one’s religious affiliations, strength and comfort can be had from the concept put forth by the Dalai Lama, whose messages in this spiritual guide include the idea that happiness is determined more by a person’s state of mind than by his external conditions or circumstances. One of the Dalai Lama’s most important teachings, and indeed the teachings of many philosophies and religions, is the importance of community, the shifting of focus from “I” to “we,” and that in giving to others, we enrich our own lives. In these lessons, we find hope and a reminder that money is not the source of our security and strength. Our source is some greater, unlimited power.

Resources:

Image by Daniel St.Pierre / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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5 Breathtaking Features of the New ThinkCentre Edge 91z Touchscreen AiO Computer

The tech world has just about gone “touch-mad” with popular gadgets like smartphones and mobile tablets and while most consumers might feel that the desktop is dead, the ThinkCentre Edge 91z AiO touchscreen computer begs to differ.

Vibrant 21.5″ Display

One of the first features that you’re bound to notice on the advanced ThinkCentre Edge 91z AiO computer is its vibrant and large 21.5 inch touchscreen display. The ThinkCentre Edge 91z features multi-touch and gesture support and is ideal for watching movies, playing games, browsing the web and will make even the most basic computing features a lot more exciting.

Advanced Hardware

The ThinkCentre Edge 91z features a very beautiful exterior, but most of its magic remains hidden under the hood. This all-in-one touchscreen computer comes in multiple models but boasts advanced hardware features including up to a 2nd generation Intel Core i7 processor, 500GHDD, 80GB SSD, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, and runs on the Windows 7 Professional 64-bit operating system.

Built-In Webcam and Microphone

If the already great hardware of the ThinkCentre Edge 91z isn’t enough to have you sold already, it also boasts a 2 megapixel digital camera and an inbuilt microphone which is ideal for web chat, VOIP calling, and Vlogging. With the inbuilt webcam of the ThinkCentre Edge 91z, it goes to show that Lenovo covered all of the bases with this advanced desktop and that it has something for everyone in the family.

Wireless Keyboard and Mouse to Boot

Touchscreen technology is great and all and this modern desktop computer will allow you to take full advantage of touchscreen technology, but if you’re in to mood to go “old school”, the ThinkCentre Edge 91z AiO touchscreen computer comes equipped with both a wireless mouse and wireless keyboard. Both the wireless mouse and wireless keyboard bundled with this computer feature spill-proof technology and are automatically paired to the ThinkCentre Edge 91z computer.

Great Retail Price

Normally to nab an advanced computer like the ThinkCentre Edge 91z, which features touchscreen technology, boasts advanced hardware, has a vibrant display, and has a host of other features, you’ll have to shell out a lot of cash, but the ThinkCentre Edge 91z is more than reasonable and starts at the low retail price of $799.00.

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5 Bucks a Day - Strategy Report Review

I couldn’t believe what I saw one day while I was searching for online business information. I was in what would be called “the Discovery Zone” for internet marketing. With all the hula-baloo and hype out there, it was difficult to distinguish what would be helpful in creating an online income or what you would file in the round can beside your desk. That’s when I ran across a little eBook called “$5 Bucks a Day”. …$5 Bucks a Day….ok….I’m game. What was this all about? Well I was about to find out. So off to the pitch page I went. And this is what I discovered.

$5 Bucks a Day was written by a gentleman by the name of Dennis Becker. He had been working hard trying to create income on the internet for about 13 years, and then in 2005 he had what he termed the “Ah-Ha” moment. That was the moment when things became clear. He had tried so hard in so many different internet avenues to make “Big” money, (which he wasn’t making), that when he had his “Ah-Ha” moment it all derived around a $5 dollar bill. A simple idea.

To start, his report is not about “…the latest black hat, gray hat, white hat, or even red hat techniques to get an advantage over search engines or competitors.” $5 Bucks a day is a strategy that can be used just about anywhere. It is a simple idea. As I read this book, I could see the potential for not only online business, but for offline business as well. There are many ways to create $5 bucks a day or on the flip side, save $5 bucks a day. Mr. Becker reviews the many possibilities to achieve this.

Dennis Becker talks about creating a website that will make $5 a day. Now you are probably thinking, that doesn’t sound like much. And I guess you are probably right. But I was thinking, what if you could create multiple websites that produced $5 dollars a day. Now that would add up. Let’s do the math. $5/day x 365 days = $1825/yr. Say we created 10 websites @ $5/day x 365days = $18,250/year. Well I think you catch my drift and that was about the time my “Ah Ha” light bulb came on. Again this simple idea can, will, and does work for those who decide to “Work” the idea. Mr. Becker is on the right track. For me, just the dollars listed above would take care of any number of monthly bills.

One of the other things he touches base on is habits. How those habits are the “controlling influence” of our daily activities. We all have habits. Inside each of us we know which ones are good and which ones are not so good. Becker talks about evaluating those habits and making course corrections. Becker challenges you to make those corrections and to create “New” good habits along with setting goals. Making course corrections will keep you on the path that you have set for yourself. I don’t know about you, but I could stand a few course corrections on occasion.

Dennis Becker’s statement to you is “…if you keep on doing the things you have been doing, you’ll keep on getting the things you’ve been getting.” Well theirs a kick in the backside. Truth can sometimes be more enlightening than we would like.

After purchasing and reading “5 Bucks a Day” strategy report, I was amazed at the simplicity and wealth of valuable information that was there. I came away with a renewed and refreshed view on making money on the internet. This eBook is very timely in today’s marketing. And I believe it will become one of the Greats! It is an inspirational and motivating report!

As a last training tip and one of the most important threads of advice that Mr. Becker gives us is this – “Focus”. Focus on what is important to your future!

Thanks Mr. Becker for being up front and honest in your strategy. This book is great! I highly recommend $5 Bucks a Day to anyone who is interested gaining value in their lives.

Lary Heller

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5 Celebs Who Could Host Outrageous Thanksgiving Dinners

From the candid to the crazy, America loves eccentric celebrities. Celebs celebrate the holidays just like the rest of us, but which celebs would host a truly crazy and outrageous Thanksgiving dinner? Whether you’d like to get a close-up look of Kat Von D’s tattoos or a peek at the private life of Johnny Depp, it’s intriguing to speculate about celebrity Thanksgiving dinners.

Lady Gaga

A Gaga Thanksgiving would certainly be inclusive and without judgment-and it would hardly be dull. While celebs probably don sweats, jeans and tees like the rest of us, one can only wonder what the Haus of Gaga might design for the singer if she hosted a funky Thanksgiving dinner.

While Lady Gaga is known for her unapologetic individualism, her controversial meat dress caused quite the controversy following the 2010 VMAs (Video Music Awards). In a later interview, veteran vegan comedienne and talk show host Ellen Degeneres suggested Gaga instead consider a vegetable dress.

Tina Fey

“30 Rock” creator Tina Fey has a knack for assembling a quirky all-star cast. Friendsgiving at Fey’s house would be anything but dull and would possibly include handsome but eccentric friends such as Alec Baldwin.

Having made the hot list in “Maxim,” Fey surrounds herself with similarly cute and hilarious individuals. The only real challenge involves eating and laughing at the same time.

Kat Von D

Interested in a tattooed Thanksgiving? Kat Von D could host an eccentric tattooed crew for turkey day. As a fan of music ranging from Beethoven to Slayer, Kat’s Thanksgiving Day could range from proper to profane.

Of all possible celebrity Thanksgiving hosts, Kat Von D would have the most interesting house. With such eclectic tastes, guests would be likely to find vintage pin-up art and famous funky-shaped windows. As a bonus, guests likely wouldn’t be expected to dress up for a dinner at Kat’s.

Charlie Sheen

Visiting Charlie Sheen for Thanksgiving would be like gambling on your happiness. Sure, the host could be witty and professional…or he could go crazy and wear the turkey “Mr. Bean” style. The allegedly bi-polar hard drug user is sure to provide some manner or method of entertainment at the Thanksgiving table.

Johnny Depp

Johnny Depp is a private celeb, often considered quintessentially offbeat. Noted for his love of privacy for himself and his family, Depp could provide a seriously quirky and intellectual Thanksgiving meal for his guests. A slave to thought-provoking conversation, Depp would invite engaging guests to his Thanksgiving meal.

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5 Career Websites for African American Students

Many career websites offer career advice and resources for African American college students and alumni. To compile this list we asked – what kind of career advice and resources are relevant for the African American college student and alumni today? These 5 career websites meet the needs of African American college students in different ways but are all relevant. College students should connect with these career websites via Twitter, Facebook or subscribe for current career information.

Career Websites for African American College Students: #1 – HBCUConnect.com

This career website is the largest gathering online of African American college students and alumni who have attended Historically Black College or Universities (HBCU’s). This career website has a social networking platform for college students and alumni to connect with each other and communicate around mutual interests from HBCU homecoming to scholarships. This career website has an extensive job board with companies interested in recruiting diverse candidates. African American college students and alumni upload resumes for employer searches.

Career Websites for African American College Students: #2 – TheHBCUCareerCenter.com

TheHBCUCareerCenter.com career website focuses only on the professional and career development of diverse college students, alumni and staff of HBCU’s through regular updates on career events, internships, study abroad programs, diversity fairs and leadership programs as well as offering tips on resume writing, interviewing and job search strategies. TheHBCUCareerCenter.com career website supports HBCU employees with the first job board dedicated to HBCU jobs to assist HBCU’s to target professionals to support their institution’s mission, HBCU-HR content and publishes a quarterly career newsletter for HBCU staff.

Career Websites for African American College Students: #3 – HBCU-Careers.net

This career website targets African American students and career centers at Historically Black Colleges and Universities through a bi-annual magazine and online job announcements from employers recruiting diverse talent. The career website features career articles written by HBCU career professionals. These career articles offer information for college students on how to conduct successful job and internship searches. Two articles from this career website are Taking the Fear out of Salary Negotiations and Behavioral Interviewing; Letting your past behavior dictate future performance.

Career Websites for African American College Students: #4 – BlackCollegian.com

BlackCollegian.com describes their career website as the “Career Site for African American College Students.” The print edition is free for college career centers and has wide distribution as a resource for African American college students and students of color across America. The online service has a career center featuring articles, advice, news, tools and examples to help students succeed in jobs and internships. Articles such as You’re a Graduate and No Job…Now What? offer practical career advice from career, HR professionals and staff writers.

Career Websites for African American College Students: #5 – LovickCareer.com

African American college students can visit lovickcareer.com career website and select links to industry clusters to learn about employment opportunities. LovickCareer.com publishes the Minority Career Journal quarterly which is distributed to college career centers. Each issue has editorial content dedicated to a pertinent employment issue. For example the Winter 2010/ 2011 issue featured HBCU’s and the Spring 2011 issue features the US auto industry. The Minority Career Journal has over 20 000 subscribers.

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5 Causes of Rapid Weight Loss

There are many causes of rapid weight loss. It can be very harmful to your body, and you want to get to the root of the problem before you get very sick. Your doctor will be able to diagnose your problem, if it is anything major, and help you recover safely.

Illness can be a cause of rapid weight loss. If you have been really sick with the flu or diarrhea, you could experience a lot of rapid weight loss. You want to make sure you drink a lot of fluids so that you stay hydrated. This kind of rapid weight loss will go away after the virus runs through you.

An overactive thyroid can be another cause of weight loss. A simple test can be done at your local clinic, and can be easily taken care of. This is quite common with a symptom of rapid weight loss, and you should take it seriously. Talk to your doctor to see if you have an overactive thyroid.

Anorexia is a large cause of rapid weight loss. Anorexia is where you intentionally make yourself sick to maintain your figure. This is not a healthy thing to do, and it can be a huge cause of rapid weight loss. If you know someone in this situation, get them help immediately.

Crash diets and exercising can be another cause of rapid weight loss. Changing your whole lifestyle with a new fad diet or crazy exercise plan can be another cause of rapid weight loss. You should always start by setting small goals and working you way up. Drastic changes are not good for your body, and you should talk to your doctor before starting any new diet.

A new medication could be the cause of your rapid weight loss. The medication could be affecting your body and causing you to lose weight. Talk to your doctor, as they may want you to change your medication if it is causing rapid weight loss.

There are many cause of rapid weight loss, but these are the five most common ones that you need to look out for. Talk to your doctor if you are feeling ill, or feel that you may have one of these five. They will know what is best for you, as well as the next course of action for you to take. If you are feeling healthy, it could be something that will pass, but you will want to monitor your weight closely to be sure.

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5 Celebrities with Depression or Bipolar Disorder

Celebrities without mood disorders may seem more common than those without. In reality, some celebrities are simply acting out. For others, they genuinely struggle with mood disorders that often disrupt their lives, the lives of their families, and their careers.

The term “mood disorders” encompasses a number of different specific disorders. Webmd defines a mood disorder as the condition in which emotional responses to circumstances are inappropriate or distorted. Mood disorders may include, but are not limited to bad moods, bipolar disorder, depression, menopause, Pms, and bipolar disorder. Mood disorders can also be associated with borderline personality disorders.

The result in the lives of celebrities makes great fodder for media and tabloids, but it is disruptive to their lives and relationships and often results in severe personal chaos. Too often, celebrities with mood or mental disorders self-medicate and find themselves addicted to drugs or alcohol, a sad situation that has robbed us of many dynamic celebrities and creative minds.

5 Celebrities with Mental Disorders

We’ve all observed Britney Spears mood disorders
Britney Spears actions and dangerous, sometime thoughtless activities have led many to wonder whether she has bi-polar disorder. Her public behavior, from hiding away to shaving her head and beating paparazzi with an umbrella have often left us bewildered and amazed. This erratic behavior is not uncommon for an individual with bipolar disorder (formerly known as manic depressive). Although there has been no public announcement o f a diagnoses, psychologists have confirmed her behavior is consistent with rapid cycling manic depression, according to The Guardian.

Ben Stiller uses comedy to cope with his mental disorder
Ben Stiller is a creative and unusual comedian, not afraid to try things that are “out of the box.” I’ve always heard there was a fine line between genius and insanity. Perhaps it is walking this line that helps Ben Stiller keep America laughing while he preserves his own sanity, channeling his energy into creative genius. Hollywood.com confirms that Ben Stiller readily admitted in a GQ interview that he struggles with bipolar disorder, which runs in his family.

Billy Joel always has it together in public, but struggles in private with mental health
Billy Joel is the Grammy winning, smiling face of rock and roll Americana. His fame and music has spanned decades. While he has always been “on” for the show, Billy Joel has long struggled with depression. At one point, according to Billy Joel: The Life & Times of an Angry Young Man written by Hank Bordowitz , Billy Joel attempted suicide by drinking furniture polish. He reportedly said he drank furniture polish because it looked tastier than bleach.

Drew Carey makes the world laugh, is he laughing, too?
Of all the celebrities I researched for this article, Drew Carey’s struggle with depression and attempts at suicide surprised me the most. ETonline reports that Carey spoke to John Stossel on 20/20 and told him that in his younger days he was full of self-hate and loathing. He tried to commit suicide when he was only 18, and declared himself a functioning alcoholic during college. In the same interview, Carey credits his decision to join the Marine Corp Reserves as the moved that saved and changed his life.

Carey told John Stossel that the struggle with depression never completely goes away, but it has become easier to deal with by simply facing it.

Another comedian makes the world laugh to cover his own pain: Jim Carrey
Now drug and alcohol free, Jim Carrey admits to a long history of prescription medication use, drug addiction, and alcohol addiction. Like many celebrities, his anger and depression started long before his successful career. It is success that sometimes makes it easier to mask the pain, or access the drugs, meds, and alcohol to make it go away – for a while. Carrey made it through his struggles, telling CBS that he found relief when he learned to live in the moment. He admits that he is still emotional, but living in the moment keeps him from worrying about the future and fretting over the past.

The list of celebrities with depression and mental illness could go on and on. The good news is that many have learned to overcome it by focusing on the moment and looking at the beauty of the world instead of dwelling on the shortfalls in their lives. Many have gone on to become advocates for the mentally ill to help break the stereo-typically mold that often accompanies individuals with mood disorders or mental illness.

Admittedly, there are a number of other celebrities who still need help.

Sources:
Carrey: Life is too beautiful, 60 Minutes, CBS news
Drew Carey on His Battle with Depression, etonline.com
Famous People with Mood Disorders, disabled-world.com
For Stiller therapy is a family tradition, Hollywood.com
Forrest, Emma. Britney’s tragic descent into mania is a journey I know all too well, Guardian.co.uk
Mood Disorders, Webmd.com

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