Daily Content Archive

(as of Monday, March 12, 2012)
Word of the Day

pitfall

Definition:(noun) An unsuspected difficulty or danger.
Synonyms:booby trap
Usage: She's like a gentle little doe feeding on lilies—she doesn't dream of the pitfalls ahead of her.
Article of the Day

Essential Oils

Known and traded since ancient times, essential oils are highly volatile organic compounds distilled from plants. Each type of oil imparts the "essence," or characteristic odor, of the plant from which it is derived. This aroma can rarely be reproduced using synthetic components. Essential oils are used for flavoring food, scenting perfume, and in medicine. Clove oil, for instance, is used in dentistry, and eucalyptus oil as a disinfectant. What other uses do essential oils have? More...
This Day in History

California's St. Francis Dam Fails (1928)

Constructed between 1924 and 1926, the St. Francis Dam was a concrete gravity-arch dam designed to act as a reservoir to store water for the Los Angeles Aqueduct. In 1928, the dam catastrophically failed, and the resulting flood of 12 billion US gallons (45 billion liters) of water killed more than 450 people. The dam's collapse was the worst American civil engineering failure of the 20th century and remains the second-greatest loss of life disaster in California's history, after what event? More...
Today's Birthday

Captain Charles Cunningham Boycott (1832)

Boycott was the estate agent for the Earl of Erne, an absentee landowner in County Mayo, Ireland, at a time when the Irish Land League was pressing for agrarian reform. In 1880, Boycott's refusal to reduce rents for tenant farmers, combined with his attempted eviction of 11 of them, led the League to launch a campaign of ostracism and isolation—now known as a "boycott"—against him and his family. Upon finding himself suddenly without servants, farmhands, or local services, Boycott did what? More...
Quotation of the Day
This simple accident of falling in love is as beneficial as it is astonishing.

Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894)

Idiom of the Day

a bridge too far

An act or plan whose ambition overreaches its capability, resulting in or potentially leading to difficulty or failure. Taken from the 1974 book A Bridge Too Far by Cornelius Ryan, which details the Allies' disastrous attempts to capture German-controlled bridges in the Netherlands during World War II. More...
Today's Holiday

Bok Kai Festival (2016)

The Bok Kai Festival is a two-day event in Marysville, California, that began as a Chinese religious event to honor Bok Eye, the god who has the power to control flooding and the waters of irrigation and the rains. Today, the celebration of Bomb Day—Bok Eye's birthday—with the Bok Kai Festival is a community-wide affair. A parade is another highlight of the festival, and a 150-foot dragon is the highlight of the parade. The Bok Kai Temple in Marysville is the only religious shrine to Bok Eye outside of Asia and is a designated historical landmark. More...
In the News

Fruits and Veggies Give Skin Attractive Glow

If just being healthier is not enough to motivate you to eat the recommended five fruits and vegetables a day, perhaps being more attractive is. According to new research, increased consumption of fruits and vegetables could contribute to a deepening of natural red and yellow skin coloration, which is thought to increase one's perceived attractiveness. The researchers believe that even small dietary changes could produce perceptible results. While experts have noted certain failures in the study's design, they agree that the findings could be beneficial anyway, since they encourage people to increase their fruit and vegetable intake. More...
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