Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Whimsical Wednesday ~ Happy Leap Day!

I am dedicating this week's Whimsical Wednesday to the last day of this month, being as it is the extra day this Leap Year.

  • Why do we need that extra day once every four years? Leap Years are needed in order to keep our calendar in alignment with the Earth's revolutions around the sun.
  • Did you know that if we did not have this extra day every four years, we would lose almost six hours from our calendar every year. That means that after only 100 years, our calendar would be off by about 24 days!!!
Interesting Facts
Leap Years were introduced by Julius Caesar in the Roman Empire over 2000 years ago. There was only one rule for the Julian calendar which was that every year that is evenly divisible by 4 was a leap year. However that led to too many leap years! This only got corrected with the introduction of the *Gregorian Calendar more than 1500 years later.

How does the Gregorian Calendar work?
A year divisible by four is a leap year, except if it is also divisible by 100, but years divisible by 400 are also leap years. So 1996 was a leap year because it is divisible by four, 2000 was a leap year because it is divisible by 400, but 1900 is not a leap year because it is not divisible by 400. Now if that is confusing, not to worry, we will still be getting that extra day every four years!

It has been worked out that the *Gregorian Calendar is off by about 1 day in 3236 years. I guess none of us will be around to see the next Calendar adjustment!

I don't know about you but I need all the extra days I can get : )

So in the meantime let's enjoy that extra day every four years

Happy Leap Year Day to you all and
especially to all who are celebrating
eir Birthday today!

*The Gregorian Calendar was named after the person who first introduced it - Pope Gregory XIII in February 1582. It is also known as the Western Calendar or the Christian Calendar.

Graphics from shared files

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Whimsical Wednesday ~ Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

♪♪♪ Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious ♪♪♪


Click here to hear the song and see part of the movie

In the Disney movie Mary Poppins, also in the stage show version, this was one particular song sung by Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke and written by Richard and Robert Sherman. This word has always taken my fancy and I always wondered how it came about. Besides the fact that I always loved musicals, this particular film has been one of my favourites ever since it came out in 1964.

I have been reading about the roots of this word which when broken down into segments is explained as...super meaning above, cali meaning beauty, fragilistic is delicate and docious as educable. Now according to the movie when all these parts are put together they mean "Something to say when you have nothing to say". This is exactly what Mr Banks says when he is confronted by his employer who has just fired him. So Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious! ♪♪♪

A year later this song was the subject of a lawsuit by songwriters Gloria Parker and Barney Young against Wonderland Music who were the publishers of the song from the Disney film. They alleged that it was an infringement of their own 1951 song entitled "Supercalafajalistickespeealadojus" also known as "The Super Song". The Disney publishers won the lawsuit partially because affidavits were produced showing that "variants of the word were known ... many years prior to 1949".

According to a search I made this 34 letter word is NOT the longest word recorded...there is one with 189,819 is the Chemical name of titin, the largest known protein BUT it is NOT in the dictionary so NOT really a word at all!

How Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012

*A Word or Not a Word - that is the question!

*A Word or Not a Word - that is the question! ... title with
apologies to Shakespeare


I'm sure that you have come across those 'funny' or should I call them
'unusual' words which, when read, don't seem to mean a thing to you
but still, you are looking at them and you type them because you
want your message to go through.

OK, I won't keep you guessing
much longer. Yes, they are the key
words or word verification which
is actually the computer testing
to see you are someone and not a
robot heehee! Well, you know
what I mean. Then, if you copy this
'word' right and hit enter,
your message/comment is accepted.

So when you see words like GIZES - LINATICA - STAMLIN, you
probably don't think they mean anything, right? Well I made a
search and guess what, yes these ones actually mean something...

GIZES is actually a city/town in Latvia

LINATICA is a site for MP3 Album Downloads (maybe you knew that one!)

STAMLIN - no, it isn't a town in Berlin or's actually a family
name, a surname.

So next time you type a 'nonsense' password I'm sure you'll be
wondering whether it really exists. Of course not all do but which ones

Now here's an example that makes bless you all for
reading this and
following my blog...I hope you enjoyed my post : )