Thursday, November 26, 2009

Difference between nautical mile and regular mile?

Something I've always wanted to know but never bothered to look up.... :
A nautical mile is based on the circumference of the planet Earth. If you were to cut the Earth in half at the equator, you could pick up one of the halves and look at the equator as a circle. You could divide that circle into 360 degrees. You could then divide a degree into 60 minutes. A minute of arc on the planet Earth is 1 nautical mile. This unit of measurement is used by all nations for air and sea travel.

A knot is a unit of measure for speed. If you are traveling at a speed of 1 nautical mile per hour, you are said to be traveling at a speed of 1 knot.
A kilometer is also defined using the planet Earth as a standard of distance. If you were to take the Earth and cut it in half along a line passing from the North Pole through Paris, and then measure the distance of the curve running from the North Pole to the equator on that circle, and then divide that distance by 10,000, you would have the traditional unit for the kilometer as defined in 1791 by the French Academy of Sciences.
A nautical mile is 1,852 meters, or 1.852 kilometers. In the English measurement system, a nautical mile is 1.1508 miles, or 6,076 feet.
To travel around the Earth at the equator, you would have to travel (360 * 60) 21,600 nautical miles, 24,857 miles or 40,003 kilometers

Monday, November 16, 2009

Weird Dream

In my dream, I was standing near the shoreline.  My friend, Liza, runs up behind me and says "Look at Chicago!".  I scan the horizon, and on what looks like a long pier, is supposedly Chicago.  Above it, there is this funnel cloud, that keeps touching down and going back and forth over the city.

Unsure of what it is, me and my friend run into a hotel, which is a few hundred feet away.  I get into the elevator, but Liza does not make it in.  I tried to open the door, but was too late.  I go up to the 25th floor.

I enter the room.  It looks like a bunch of gym showers.  There were at least three of them.  I hear knocking.  I apparently came in through the backdoor.  I go to the front door, but find a refrigerator blocking the hallway to the front door.  So, I have to move it before I get to it.  Liza is at the front door.  She says that she is the same way, in that she enters her house through the back door and ends up blocking the front door with things.

All of a sudden, I am on the roof.  It is very windy and rainy.
I see a blue and red helicopter fly over head, then lose control and slam into the roof of the adjacent building.  But the helicopter didn't smash into pieces.  It bounced up.  The helicopter is hanging off the edge of the building, where I am with someone on the roof who says that the pilot is passed out.

We scream and bang on the helicopter and the pilot finally wakes up.

He instructs me to start pumping this contraption a certain way.  When I start pumping it, the helicopter inflates like a toy and is eventually repaired.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I can swim - Sort of

I remember as a child, I took swimming lessons at the YMCA. I remember doing well. Then, for many years, I did not have the opportunity to swim. When I did get back into the water, I was unable to swim. I was able to doggy-paddle slightly and swim underwater shortly. I accepted my fate as a non-swimmer.

In college, a couple of friends and I decided to take swimming lessons. It was a sixteen-week course. I was able to do most things, except float (on your back. I was able to float face-down, which doesn't help) and tread. I would tread for a few seconds and then sink to the bottom. When trying to float on my back, I will be relaxed as can be, then slowly water will cover my face and I continue to sink. When kicking as hard as I could, the lower half of my body (butt and feet) would slowly start to sink and proceed to pull me under. I baffled my instructor, who could not understand what was going on. She told me that it was like I was made of bricks. Honestly, that's what it feels like.

I am not scared of the water. I love to be in the water. I will even go to the deep end, as long as I have a flotation device or am near the edge. Once, when snorkeling in the Caribbean, I asked the rental guy for a life vest and he gave me this weird look and asked me why I needed one to snorkel. I think it is much easier to snorkel with a life vest on because you can just float around and relax without worrying about sinking.

A friend told me that people with higher bone density have difficulty swimming.
This link says that people with more fat can float. I have a lot of fat on my body, but cannot float so there goes that hypothesis. If you think about it, all those Olympic swimmers hardly have any fat on them. Does this mean that they can't float either?

Last week, I bought swim fins, for boogie boarding. I wanted to practice using the fins in a pool before going out into the ocean. Believe it or not, I was able to swim and tread water. I then took off my fins and tried to repeat this feat, only to sink again.

I have very small feet for an adult: Women Size 5. I wonder if this has anything to do with my inability to swim. Do the fins make my feet longer and thus allow me to stay afloat? I don't understand.

At least I know I am able to swim in one form or another.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Rock, Paper, Scissors

While watching the clip on Big Bang Theory about "Rock, Paper, Scissors, Lizard, Spock", I decided to look up the rules because it didn't make sense to me.

I found the rules on wikipedia:

While reading, I came across the reference to the Japanese version called Jan-ken-pon.
My mind flashed-back to my childhood when my mom and I would play the "Rock, Paper,Scissors" derivative Jack en poy; the chant clearly going through my head "Jack en Poy. Hali Hali Hoy!" or "Pik, Pik... Papel, Gunting, Bato!" Surely, this had to be related to the Japanese version.

I looked up the rules of Jan-ken-pon:

Sure enough, it was:

In the Philippines, a variation called jack en poy is used. This was introduced most likely during the Japanese occupation during World War II. The complete chant in Tagalog is Jack en poy, hali hali hoy, sino ang matalo, siya ang unggoy! ("Jack en poy, hali hali hoy, the one who loses is a monkey!"). Another variation is called bato bato pik! or simply pik.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

To Hell in a Handbasket

That phrase came into my head as I was thinking about something. Then I thought, where did that phrase come from. What does it even mean? The picture painted in my head is a weird one. It doesn't even make much sense to me. I don't even know why I know that phrase or where I heard it from.

So, I looked it up. Not much help in that arena. Origins don't seem clear.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Worms in the Rain

It's April, so it's been raining a lot lately. I've noticed this many times that after a rainstorm, you see worms all over the payment. I always wonder if the worms knew they were going to die. Why don't they stay closer to the ground so they can go back down after the rain stops? Sometimes after the rain, if I see that a worm is still alive and writhing on the payment, I'll pick up a stick and place them on a patch of grass. I don't know if they survive. I guess it's just to make myself feel better.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Bathroom Urges

Why is it that you can control your extreme urge to go to the bathroom, but as soon as you near your destination all of a sudden you can't hold it anymore?