Tuesday, November 13, 2012


   This diy comes from www.thehipsterho.me .  I truley interesting and ingenious little craft I thought you would enjoy!

Ahoy there Hipster Homers! I’m Julie and I’m the very first guest blogger on this fine site. Today’s project involves breaking stuff, plants, found objects, and miniatures. Fun, right?


Let’s get started! We’re going to go through the steps to create your very own little terrarium. I like building terrariums inside of lightbulbs because of the inherent challenge of working in such a small space as well as how the simple, industrial beauty of a light bulb complements the intricacy of natural elements. (I was inspired to try this out after seeing this post on Apartment Therapy a couple of months ago.)
We’ll get into the nitty gritty of how to make one of these. But first, let’s go through some key dos and don’ts of light bulb terrariums. I assembled these tips and warnings through extensive trial and error as well as helpful advice from the folks at Flora Grubb Gardens and Hortica in San Francisco.

Dos and Don’ts

  • Do use sand or small pebbles; these are good because water drains through them easily. (Wet soil will get moldy in a confined area. You don’t want this.)
  • Do use Tillandsia, also known as air plants; these are a great choice for your tiny terrarium because they take all the nutrients they need from the air and a small amount of water. No roots means no wet soil which means no mold. You can buy tillandsia at garden stores or online.
  • Do choose preserved moss instead of live moss. Preserved moss isn’t living, but it will hold moisture; this moisture raises the humidity level in the terrarium, which makes the tillandsia happy. You can find sheet moss, reindeer moss, and other preserved mosses at garden and floral stores.
  • Do keep your terrarium in partial sunlight.
  • Do give your terrarium some water. The tillandsia is alive and will need a small amount of water to stay that way. Water it by either removing it and soaking it in water once a week or, using a spray bottle, give it a small spritz of water every week or two. Pour out any excess water.
  • Do feel free to use little rocks, pieces of glass, or any other bits of things to help give your terrarium character.
  • Don’t use soil. Again, you don’t want a soupy, moldy terrarium. That would be gross.
  • Don’t use live moss. Moss is really picky and isn’t likely to survive well in this environment.
  • Don’t keep your terrarium in the dark.
  • Don’t keep your terrarium in full sunlight, either.

How To:

You’ll need a few tools to make a tiny terrarium but nothing complicated to get started.
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Scissors
  • Long tweezers or chopsticks
  • Flathead screwdriver
  • Glasses or goggles

Some of the tools

Let’s start with the light bulb. I like the globe kind that are used to light bathroom vanities. You can buy them at any hardware store, or preferably, use one that’s burned out to save resources. For those of us in northern California, one option for buying burned out bulbs (if you don’t have any on hand) is the East Bay Depot for Creative Reuse in Oakland. Don’t use “soft white” bulbs or else your terrarium will just look like January in Minnesota. I don’t think this is what you’re going for.

Pre-op lightbulb

We will be removing the inside parts of the lightbulb. This step involves breaking glass, so wear glasses or goggles to protect your eyes. I recommend doing this over a box to contain any flying pieces of broken glass. And, obviously, this is an “adults only” kind of task.

Pulling up the sides of the brass nubbin

First, remove the metal tip from the bottom of the bulb. Using needle-nose pliers, carefully nudge the sides of the metal tip from the black glass part.

Pull out the brass nubbin

Then, when enough of the sides are raised to get a good grip on them, hold one of the sides with your pliers and yank out the metal tip. You will feel a couple little wires snap when you do this.

Snap out the glass from the bottom

Next remove the black glass. Hold one side of the glass with the pliers and firmly twist up to snap the glass. Repeat around the other sides and pull out any remaining bits of black glass. This glass is pretty thick and will take some force to break it; so be careful and hold onto the bulb firmly.


Now you will be able to see the interior parts of the light bulb.

Snap the interior tube and smash out the exterior tube

Using the flathead screwdriver as a sort of lever, snap the interior tube from the side. It will make a totally satisfying little sound as the argon escapes. Then twist the screwdriver around to smash the containing tube. It takes some force to do this; be careful, but also don’t be afraid of the bulb itself breaking. It probably won’t. Hold tight to the bulb while you do this.

Pull out any remaining wires

Pull out any remaining wires with the pliers.

Break off any remaining pieces of glass

If there are any last bits of glass around the interior edge, break these off with the screwdriver.

Affix little silicone feet

And now you have an empty light bulb! That is definitely the hardest part of the endeavor. Next, put adhesive silicone bumpers on the side of the bulb to keep it steady.

Rinse any salt off of the sand

We’ll use sand as a substrate for the terrarium. You can buy it at a garden store or collect it from a beach. If you use beach sand you will need to thoroughly rinse it to remove any salt.
The sand in this tutorial is from the beach, so our first step is to rinse it.

Speed things up by drying the sand in the oven

To dry it, either spread it in a thin layer on a cookie sheet and leave it sitting for a few days, or dry it in the oven at 300 degrees. Be careful taking it out, because it will, hopefully obviously, be pretty hot.

Clean, dry sand!

The sand should be completely dry before continuing.

Makeshift funnel

Once it’s dry, put a couple tablespoons of sand into the lightbulb. Make this easier by either using a funnel or a folded piece of cardboard.

Dried, preserved sheet moss

This terrarium includes preserved sheet moss, reindeer moss, and tillandsia.

Add reindeer moss and sheet moss

Cut off a small bit of sheet moss and put in the bulb. Position it using a chopstick or long tweezers. Tear off a few small pieces of reindeer moss and add this, as well.

Add a tillandsia

Put a tillandsia in the bulb, pushing the smaller end in first. Position the different elements to look nice together and add more moss or rocks if you’d like. It might take some poking to get everything in the right place; be patient and experiment with different arrangements.

Add a unicorn!

For extra fun, tiny toy animals can enliven your terrarium. I used a miniature horse for this one, and stuck a piece of gold wire in its head to make it into a makeshift unicorn. Any other found objects, like rocks, sticks, marbles, etc., would also be fun.
And voilĂ ! You have a lovely terrarium.


   This list takes a look at ten fascinating facts or misconceptions we all have about food – they should be, for the most part, new to a lot of us. There will undoubtedly be a little controversy around some of the entries but I believe that people will be able to comment without too much vitriol or anger. If you can think of other fascinating food myths be sure to mention them. The excellent book “Modernist Cuisine” Book 1 History and Fundamentals formed the basis of research for many items on this list. It is highly recommended for anyone interested in the science of food.



Fallacy: You are fat and need to lose weight
   No magical combination of foods, avoidance of foods, increase in the intake of certain foods, or special diet plans will make you lose weight. The only way you can lose weight is to eat fewer calories than you burn in your daily activities. If you burn 7,000 kilojoules a day, you need to eat 7,000 kilojoules to maintain your weight. If you want to lose weight, eat a thousand less (give or take) a day and you have it. It doesn’t matter whether your daily calories come from chocolate, salad, fat, sugar, or beans. The reason that fad diets work so well is that the people subscribing to them are initially motivated and ultimately eat fewer calories than they are burning. Diets like the Atkins (in which you must eat only protein) work in the same way – cream and high-fat meats are so rich you can only eat so much so you eat less. The best diet (which should be your diet for life) is to moderate the amount of food you eat. It doesn’t matter what you eat – just don’t eat too much.
Did you know: Robert Atkins, inventor of the Atkins Diet, died after sustaining head injuries when he slipped on some ice after a snow storm in New York. He was 72 years old.

Cooking Off Alcohol

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Fallacy: Cooking or flaming removes most alcohol
From time to time we have a special event or family occasion that requires some fancy cooking. These are, for the average home cook, the times we like to cook extravagant recipes that usually require large quantities of booze. And that is fine for a family meal because the cooking removes the alcohol making it safe for the alcoholics and children amongst us. Or at least that is what we have all been led to think. In reality, it is actually quite difficult to remove alcohol from food by cooking. Setting fire to alcohol in the pan (which seems to be the most extreme way to burn off the booze) actually reduces the total alcohol percentage by a mere 25%. In other words, when you add a cup of brandy to a pan and set it alight, once the flames go out you still have the equivalent of 3/4 of cup of brandy left behind (alcohol intact). If you want to reduce the alcohol to 0% – good luck; cooking alcohol for 2.5 hours with other liquids and ingredients still leaves 5% alcohol behind. That certainly explains some of the more unusual episodes of Julia Child’s cooking show.
Did you know: Alcohol in high doses has been known to cause increased rates of “regrettable” sexual encounters in humans.

Salt Kills


Fallacy: Salt kills
   Salt is a naturally occurring substance that, when added to low-salt food, enhances and deepens flavor. The human body has around 1% salt in it and this is constantly removed through urination, sweating, etc. The salt is essential to our health so we need to replace it through our diet. Excess salt does not cause a high salt percentage – our bodies are smart enough to handle it. If you eat too much salt you just pee it out. There may be some negative impacts on the body through extremely high consumption of salt in those with blood or heart disorders, but the average healthy human can quite happily over-consume the substance without ill-effect. To kill yourself with salt, you need to consume about 1 gram per kilo of body weight. In other words, if you weigh 130 pounds you need to eat around 5 tablespoons of salt – an immense amount of salt and you would probably vomit before you could finish it (because salt is an emetic).
Did you know: Before Biblical Judaism ceased to exist, salt was mixed with animal sacrifices. This originated from Moses in Leviticus 2:13 which states: “Whatsoever sacrifice thou offerest, thou shalt season it with salt, neither shalt thou take away the salt of the covenant of thy God from thy sacrifice. In all thy oblations thou shalt offer salt.” The salt was a symbol of wisdom and discretion.

Grill Death

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Fallacy: Grilled meat is bad for you
   When rats are fed high doses of nicely browned grilled meat they have a statistically higher chance of getting cancer. But that is rats. So far no study of humans has found the same result. Despite that, the US National Toxicology Program says that these chemicals (heterocyclic amines) are “reasonably anticipated” to be carcinogens in humans. Why? No one is really sure. Tripterygium wilfordii is deadly to rats but is consumed by humans as an oral contraceptive with no negative impact. A recent study of humans consuming grilled meat found no association between that and cancer. Let’s face it – for thousands of years humans have cooked meat and evolved (some might say) to be tolerant to it. When was the last time you saw a rat cooking a barbecue? Humans are not rats – what is deadly to a rat is not always deadly to a human.
Did you know: Potato chips, breakfast cereals, crusty bread, etc. are all crunchy because of the same chemicals as those that produce the nice browned effect on grilled meat. Furthermore, these chemicals are known to be antioxidants that suppress the bacteria that causes peptic ulcers. Speaking of that delicious crust around a good steak…

Raw Pork

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Fallacy: Pork and poultry should be cooked to high temperatures to make them safe for eating
      Trichinella spiralis, a type of roundworm, is the main culprit behind the huge campaign for cooking pork to 71c / 160f (beyond well-done). For decades governments around the world have been promoting cooking at that level as the only safe way to eat pork. Sadly this is another case of science and government’s failure to be able to backtrack when they are wrong. Between 1997 and 2001 eight cases of roundworm infection attributed to pork occurred in the US. This is from a total consumption of 32 billion kilos (70 billion pounds) of pork. Trichinella spiralis infection is one of the rarest diseases known to modern medicine. When it does occur it is neither fatal nor serious and is easily treated. Sadly, to prevent such a minuscule amount of infections, virtually all pork eaten is destroyed in the cooking. Pork can be safely consumed at temperatures as low as 55c (135.5f) which results in a moist and pink cut of meat. The same is also true of chicken which can be safely eaten rare (cooked to 58c – 136f). At these temperatures both trichinella spiralis and salmonella are destroyed. Pictured above is a delicious cut of medium-rare pork.
Did you know: Raw chicken sashimi (toriwasa) is popular in Japan; it is served with a mirin and soy dipping sauce and a little ginger. Along with the raw chicken flesh, raw chicken gizzards and hearts are also consumed.


Vegetarian Ribolita Lg

Fallacy: Man is a vegetarian
   Utter tripe most regularly spewed by irrational vegans and some vegetarians. The lengths that these people will go to disprove man’s meat-eating disposition are, at times ludicrous. From posters of Jesus denouncing the consumption of meat (contrary to the fact that Christ’s most significant act in the Bible – second to his death – was the last supper which was a big roast lamb dinner) to statements from Gandhi denouncing the practice as evil (they tend to not worry too much aboutother aspects of his life which may give one cause to reconsider his words as morally authoritative). In reality, at least two million years ago our ancestors were eating cooked foods, and a Berkeley anthropologist specializing in diet has gone so far as to say that we would not have evolved into humans were it not for meat in our diet. According to said “evolutionary dietician” Katharine Milton, “it’s unlikely that proto humans could have secured enough energy and nutrition from the plants available in their African environment at that time to evolve into the active, sociable, intelligent creatures they became. Receding forests would have deprived them of the more nutritious leaves and fruits that forest-dwelling primates survive on.” Her thesis complements the discovery last month by UC Berkeley professor Tim White and others that early human species were butchering and eating animal meat as long ago as 2.5 million years.
Did you know: Veganism (not just the refusal to eat meat but the complete abstention from all animal products) was a concept invented in the 1940s by Englishman Donald Watson an avowed vegetarian who decided to take his diet to fanatical levels in all areas of his life.

Organic Produce


Fact: Organic foods are potentially more toxic than non-organic
   Plants left in the wild naturally develop complex methods to self-manage pests. Often this is in the form of mild toxins – these toxins can repel pests but, in high doses can be harmful to humans. In organic farming many plants are left untreated and this allows those toxins to increase more than in pesticide treated produce. In other cases natural pesticides are used in place of man-made – pesticides such as nicotine infusions. Nicotine is known to be deadly to humans when consumed (in small doses what’s more) yet the majority of “unnatural” pesticides have been rigorously tested for human safety. There are many loopholes in the rules around organic produce which allow other deadly products such as pyrethrum and rotenone to be used in organic farming – both of these chemicals have been linked to Parkinson’s disease. Also many things labeled as organic contain non-organic mater – “organic muffins” are leavened with baking soda which is inorganic (not a product of a living thing) and it is purified through a chemical process. Other ingredients are also allowed despite non-organic origins – table salt, for example, which is heavily chemically processed for purification. Most of the higher quality products bearing the label “organic” are not of a superior standard because they are organic – they are superior because they come from small farms where greater personal care goes into the farming. Unfortunately most organic produce these days is mass produced by conglomerates jumping on the latest bandwagon. Thus the quality of organic produce is usually no better than non-organic and, as has been stated, can be potentially more harmful.
Did you know: No study exists to prove that man-made agricultural chemicals cause harm to people who buy and eat nonorganic fruits, vegetables, or meats.

Fiber Benefits


Fallacy: High fiber reduces cancer risk
Thanks to Doctor Denis Burkitt who spent some years in Kenya and Uganda studying the diet of the natives, most of the western world has been fooled into thinking high fiber helps prevent cancer. Unfortunately for us poor bewildered masses he was wrong. Dr Burkitt noticed during his tenure that colorectal cancer was rare in that part of the world. Alas the poor doctor fell for the common logical error of post hoc ergo propter hoc (Coincidental Correlation). The native Kenyan and Ugandans ate lots of fiber and, according to Burkitt, consequently suffered low incidences of the cancer which ultimately took his name: Burkitt’s lymphoma. His “research” was ground breaking and realizing the huge financial benefits, theSeventh-Day-Adventist company Kellogs (amongst others – Uncle Sam, Sanitarium – another tax-free company owned by the Seventh-Day-Adventists, etc) began to propound the benefits of an excessively high-fiber diet. But what does science say? Unfortunately a lot of “science” is reliant on donations from such companies as the aforementioned so they tend to say little or nothing at all. But the few studies that have been undertaken (and oft-times buried shortly thereafter) show no benefit to a high fiber diet. In fact, horrifyingly for those of us who have been persuaded by these multinationals that excess fiber is good for us, one study (The Women’s Health Initiative) showed an eight percent higher risk of invasive cancer of the colon or rectum in a low fat / high fiber diet. Food for thought.
Did you know: When studies began to show that Burkitt was probably wrong with his fiber/cancer link, new studies (from the previously mentioned conglomerates) showed that a high fiber diet reduces risk of heart disease and diabetes. These new “findings” also lack any credible scientific backing. But they are definitely helping the Seventh-Day-Adventists maintain a roaring trade in the “health” food business.

Chinese Restaurant Syndrome


Fact: You eat MSG every day
   Look back over your food consumption today. Did you eat any of the following:
* Processed snack food (for example, chips, doritos, cheetos, etc.)
* Meat
* Any non-meat protein (for example, beans)
* Mushrooms
* Tomatoes
* Soy sauce
* Cheese (especially hard cheeses)
* Wheat based products (for example, bread)
   Every one of the above foods (plus many, many more) contain high concentrations of MSG. Some (the processed foods) have MSG added, but the rest are all natural. By now most Listverse readers should know that Chinese Restaurant Syndrome is a huge fraud unintentionally (maybe) perpetrated by well-meaning people, but, alas, there are still millions of people who think MSG is the cause of all their woes. There are huge websites dedicated to helping “MSG-sensitive” people avoid the dreaded chemical in their daily lives. Let us get this straight once and for all: MSG occurs naturally in most foods and no single study ever has been able to give even the slightest hint of evidence that MSG (naturally occurring or extracted from naturally occurring sources) is harmful in any way. Parmesan cheese has the second highest concentration of MSG with sun-dried tomatoes and tomato paste also having massive doses. So why (as Jeffrey Steingarten – famed food critic – put it) have we “never heard of of a Parmesan headache or Tomato-Paste Syndrome”?) Incidentally – KFC chicken coating is not made of 11 secret herbs and spices – it is flour, salt, pepper, paprika, and MSG. Now you know why it is “finger licking good”.
Did you know: Europeans and Americans consume an average of 1 gram of MSG from natural food sources every day of their lives.

Forbidden Fats


Fallacy: Fat kills
   Much of this fallacy revolves around the role of cholesterol in heart disease. HDL (“good” cholesterol) and LDL (“bad” cholesterol) are actually lipoproteins that contain exactly the same cholesterol; HDL (high density lipoproteins) are merely the mechanism used to transport cholesterol from bodily tissue to the liver – thereby reducing the amount of cholesterol in the blood stream. LDL (low density lipoproteins) deliver cholesterol to places in the body that need it. The failure to properly differentiate between these lipoproteins has led to many erroneous studies on the dangers of cholesterol and fat in our diets. Studies have shown that a high fat diet causes an increase in overall cholesterol in the blood stream. Consequently people have the idea that high fat = high cholesterol = high risk of heart disease. In reality, more nuanced studies show that high fat actually causes a dramatically higher ratio of “good” cholesterol to bad. This, according to the commonly held views of scientists, should actually result in a decrease of heart disease risk – but no one will admit it. Three randomized controlled clinical trials recently discovered that a reduced total fat or saturated fat diet over several years results in no lowering of heart disease, stroke, or other cardiovascular disease. In other words, high-fat diets (such as the French enjoy) probably has no bad impact on your health.
Did you Know: Due to government guidelines and what can only be called anti-fat propaganda from the 1970s until now has lowered fat consumption by over 10% per person on average per year. Coincidentally (maybe) obesity rates have increased at the same time by around 10%. It is highly possible that a strict low-fat diet can prevent a person from feeling satiated and consequently over-eat “low-fat” but high-calorie foods.


Collision Labs - Thanksgiving Facts Infographic