Smile Babe and Dude

Smiling actually stimulates our brain more than chocolate, a well regarded pleasure inducer.

“In a study conducted in the UK (using an electromagnetic brain scan machine and heart-rate monitor to create “mood-boosting values” for various stimuli), British researchers found that one smile can provide the same level of brain stimulation as up to 2,000 chocolate bars; they also found that smiling can be as stimulating as receiving up to 16,000 Pounds Sterling in cash. That’s 25 grand a smile!”

smiles... better than chocolate!?!

smiles… better than chocolate!?!

Smiling has documented therapeutic effects that have shown to reduce stress hormones, increased health and mood enhancing hormone levels (like endorphins), and lowered blood pressure.

Perhaps the one of the most amazing benefits that smiling offers is that of pain relief.  ”Remembering that laughter has powerful benefits should get you smiling. In fact, psychoneuroimmunology is a field of research dedicated to deciphering the relationship between human behavior (in this case, laughing) and the mind, and how it affects the immune system .”

“White blood cells that seem to respond positively to laughter arelymphocytes, which originate in bone marrow and include B cells (to fight infections) and T cells (to attack viruses and manage immune responses) [sources: National Cancer Institute,Pattillo and Itano]. Interferon-gamma levels have also been shown to increase with laughter (interferons assist immunological responsiveness and deter tumor growth) .‪”

So the next time you find yourself in pain, depressed, or low in health give yourself a smile!

May Your Light Shine


Happy Easter!

Famous Last Words

Famous Last Words

“Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?”
[O Lord, why have you forsaken me?] ~ Matthew 27:46

… and Jesus cried out in a loud voice… ~ Mark 15:37

“Father, into your hands I commit My spirit.” ~ Luke 23:46

“It is finished.” ~ John 19:30

= = = =

Todd Beamer
(1968- 2001)
The final words of Todd Beamer Let’s roll.

George Best
The final words of George Best Don’t die like I did.

More on the last words of George Best
Humphrey Bogart
The final words of Humphrey Bogart Goodbye Kid. Hurry back.

More on the last words of Humphrey Bogart
(circa 563 BC – circa 483 BC) – Siddhattha Gautama
The final words of the Buddha Work hard to gain your own salvation.

Donald Campbell
The final words of Donald Campbell Hallo, the bow is up… I’m going… I’m on my back… I’ve gone. Oh.

King Charles II
The final words of King Charles II Let not poor Nelly starve.

Erskine Childers
The final words of Erskine Childers Take a step forward, lads. It will be easier that way.

Kurt Cobain
The last words of Kurt Cobain It’s better to burn out than to fade away.

Oliver Cromwell
The final words of Oliver Cromwell My design is to make what haste I can to be gone.

Salvador Dali
The last words of Salvador Dali I do not believe in my death.

Diana, Princess of Wales
The final words of Diana, Princess of Wales My God. What’s happened?

Isadora Duncan
The final words of Isadora Duncan Adieu, mes amis. Je vais à la gloire. (Farewell, my friends. I go to glory.)

King George V
The final words of King George V Bugger Bognor!

More on the last words of
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The final words of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Mehr Licht! (More light!)

Joe Hill
I will die like a true-blue rebel. Don’t waste any time in mourning – organize.
Henrik Ibsen
The last words of Henrik Ibsen On the contrary.

Michael Jackson
The final words of Michael Jackson I love you more

Stan Laurel
The final words of Stan Laurel I’d rather be skiing.

Hugh Latimer
(circa 1485–1555)
Be of good comfort Master Ridley, and play the man. We shall this day light such a candle by God’s grace in England, as (I trust) shall never be put out.
Robert E. Lee
Strike the tent. (attributed)
John Lennon
The final words of John Lennon I’m shot.

Spike Milligan
The final words of Spike Milligan I told you I was ill.

Sir Thomas More
This hath not offended the king.
Admiral Horatio Nelson
Thank God, I have done my duty.
Captain Lawrence Oates
I am just going outside and may be some time.
Barbara Olson
What do I tell the pilot to do?
Lord Henry Temple Palmerston
Die, my dear Doctor, that’s the last thing I shall do!
Luciano Pavarotti


The final words of Lucianno Pavarotti I believe that a life lived for music is an existence spent wonderfully, and this is what I have dedicated my life to.

William Pitt
I think I could eat one of Bellamy’s veal pies. (attributed)
Pope John Paul II
Let me go to the house of the Father.
Elvis Presley
(1935 – 1977)
The final words of Elvis Presley I hope I haven’t bored you.

Sir Walter Raleigh
(circa 1552–1618)
I have a long journey to take, and must bid the company farewell.
Cecil Rhodes
So little done, so much to do.
Ken Saro-Wiwa
Lord take my soul, but the struggle continues.
General John Sedgwick
The final words of General John Sedgwick They couldn’t hit an elephant at this distance.

Gertrude Stein
“What is the answer?” No answer came. She laughed and said, “In that case what is the question?”
Lytton Strachey
If this is dying, then I don’t think much of it.
Hunter S. Thompson
The final words of Hunter S. Thompson Relax – This won’t hurt.

Oscar Wilde
One of us must go. (attributed, probably apocryphal)

Homeless Man Running Away From Home

(part one)

Anticipation of Running Away

Am I so excited about my trip to the Rocky Mountains of Colorado that I cannot sleep?

Lord knows I tried and tried before catching the Cali Zephyr. God knows that I had suffered from a rottenly, bitter 4 a.m. cup of java from the 24- hour Subway located across from the Amtrak office along San Francisco’s Embarcadero. I drank it only because I awoke in an odd, slumping posture and was cold, wet, and shivering.


I must have been sitting at the abandoned bus stop since 2:45 and dozed off for about 65 minutes.

I think the rattling sound of my teeth woke me up.

Prior to that, I found a dry, shielded spot adjacent to the vehicle portico of the Americano Hotel. There the unfriendly doorman woke me up. I thought that was the place for me to hide high and dry until the Amtrak ticket office opens at 6.

Before that I had found a lovely spot near the ticket office along San Francisco Pier 2 with a beautiful view of the Bay Bridge yet all lit up from its grand reopening last year.

My original plans for running away from home have run amuck. I had planned to spend my first late night and early morning hours in the Metrion Movieplex. When I arrived and tried to walk into theatre about 8:30, there were thousands of geeks walking out. Seems the AMC interrupted their regular business to let the Microsoft folks hold their conference programs inside. I was disappointed that I did not see three different movies last night.

Fortunately, I did see “Cesar Chavez” at the Daly City Century Theatre before getting on a BART train heading downtown. Even though it was not authentic, I thought everything but the last 10 minutes of the movie was excellent. Although the whole story took place in Delano and Los Angeles, California, the movie was really filmed in Mexico City and Sonora, Mexico.

All is well now as I sat again in the remarkable atrium of the Hyatt Embarcadero where I witnessed the Oakland A’s defeating Seattle in 12 innings last night while dining on banana bread pudding and a raspberry mint lemonade cocktail before trying to “hit the sack.”

By 7:30 a.m., it seems it is raining harder at the Emeryville train depot than it was in San Francisco at 1:00 a.m. when rain fell on my forehead and I started to get wet lying down taking a nap in front of the San Francisco Amtrak ticket office.

It is difficult to tell how sleep deprived I am. Last knight I kept getting woken up by private security patrolmen, hotel doormen, and the sound of rain falling on my head. Really the last seven days has only given me two nights of restful sleep.

= = =

copyright MMXIV

- Max’s Scout Services & Communications -

(for musement only)

Senate Declares “April 1st” a National Holiday

Sacramento – The Senate voted by a 6 to 1 margin that “April Fools’ Day” be a national holiday in the U.S.

Votes of members who were suspended three days ago were not counted.

As Forrest Gump said, “Stupid is …”  With the prevalence of text messaging and other stupors of technology, America is becoming more foolish… thus reasons the elected officials.


earworms 2

Originally posted on Wandervogel Diary:

head 2

Four years ago, I wrote a post called “Earworms,” a short essay about how catchy tunes become stuck in your head and won’t go away. According to research, it happens to 90% of us at least once a week.

Now imagine that the distant tune in the back of your head suddenly becomes very real. A real singer. Real drums. Real guitar. Strings. Full volume. These are called musical hallucinations and some people suffer from them on a daily basis.

In the years since I wrote that piece, I have heard public radio and others cover this topic (usually from a scientific perspective), most recently in The New Yorker and last week on RadioLab. Here is a segment of the radio show that runs about 20 minutes:

Listen to the rebroadcast of RadioLab’s April 21, 2008 segment on “Earworms”

Nothing ever happened as a result of publishing…

View original 412 more words

Leptin and Ghrelin: The Connection Between Sleep and Weight Control

Obesity and sleep quality are big issues.

Did you know?
… about two very important hormones— leptin and ghrelin.



When we get inadequate sleep, our ghrelin levels raise signaling the stomach that we are hungry and need to eat.

At the same time, leptin, responsible for suppressing hunger, decreases resulting in over-eating. When we get enough sleep, our appetites are curbed and our metabolism improves.

At the same time, our bodies get to rest and recover from the day’s activities.

Expect “The Madness” in College Basketball


Imagine no less than 5 upsets in the Midwest Region. Hint: The winners will be made up of Senior-classmen at guard. Texas Southern could pull the shocker versus the Shockers.

Start with a 15-2 matchup and 2 other big upsets coming on Thursday.

1. North Dakota State Bisons over the Oklahoma Sooners.
2. Arizona State Sun Devils defeating the Texas Longhorns.
3. Manhattan will beat the spread over the defending champion Louisville Cardinals.


That is what makes March Madness 2014 special.

More fun upsets on Friday could be:
The hot Eastern Kentucky Colonels over the Kansas Jayhawks.
Texas Southern to surprise Wichita State.
The rolling Providence Friars beating the North Carolina Tar Heels.

Perhaps 3 upsets on Saturday and two more on Sunday.

Could a team from the state of Ohio (Dayton or Ohio State University) beat #3-ranked Syracuse in the Southern Regional?

On Saturday’s second round look for:
a) #2 Villanova to drop out of the tournament to the winner of the U. Conn – St. Joseph winner.
b) St. Louis Billikens to upset the defending champ Louisville or the Manhattan Jaspers.

In Sunday’s second round two #1 seeded teams will fall:
a) Kentucky Wildcats over the Wichita State Shockers.
b) Memphis – George Washington winner will be too much for Virginia.

66 schools will be reduced to 16 this weekend. Three of four top-seeded teams will escape to the “Sweet Sixteen.” Only one of the four will make it to the finals.

In summary, these upsets are very likely.

#15 beats #2: Eastern Kentucky Colonels (24-9) vs. Kansas Jayhawks (24-9)
#14 beats #3: Jaspers vs. Cardinals
#12 beats #5: North Dakota State vs. Oklahoma
#11 beats #6: Providence vs. UNC
#10 beats #7: ASU vs. Texas

#1 loses to #8: Kentucky beats undefeated Wichita State.

= = = =

The Midwest will be frought with the most upsets during this weekend of “March Madness”

Can you imagine a Midwest Regional being played in Indianapolis next weekend with Manhattan College, Mercer, Texas Southern, and Wofford? How exciting!

= = = =

copyright MMXIV

- Max’s Scout Services & Communications, LLC -

( for musement only )

Bah Humbug … Daylight Saving

For morning people, there is more darkness early beginning tomorrow.

Even cows don’t like Daylight Saving Time. Come Sunday morning, when the milking machines get attached to their udders a whole hour too early, the otherwise placid bovines on dairy farms around the United States will snort in surprise and dismay. They may give less milk than usual. They could take days or weeks to get used to the new milking schedules.

The Dreaded Time Change

The Dreaded Time Change

American Indians have a saying about the US government tradition:

“It is like cutting the top of a blanket, sewing it to the bottom, and believing that the day is longer.”

Hawaii is a grand state because they do not use this time-dishonest system legislated in the District of Columbia.

Business Compassion May Not Be An Oxymoron

In a presentation February 24, 2014, at Santa Clara University (home of a noteworthy MBA program):

His Holiness The Dalai Lama urged. “Companies should also teach compassion.”

By Bruce Newman

Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama acknowledges the crowd before his talk on business, ethics and compassion at the Leavey Event Center at Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, Calif. on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014.  The event was co-sponsored by the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University and Stanford’s Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education. (Gary Reyes/Bay Area News Group)

SANTA CLARA, CALIFORNIA – His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama brought his message of compassion and peace to one of the most cutthroat, competitive business centers in the world, telling a Silicon Valley audience Monday to put less emphasis on a materialistic life and adopt a sense of “mission.”

The 78-year-old Tibetan cleric spoke for 15 minutes under what turned out to be the very loose rubric of the program’s title, “Business, Ethics and Compassion” at Santa Clara University’s Leavey Event Center, then joined in a panel discussion on the same subject with local leaders of the compassion community.

Monks pay homage to Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama before his talk on business, ethics and compassion at the Leavey Event Center at Santa Clara

Monks pay homage to Tibetan spiritual leader the Dalai Lama before his talk on business, ethics and compassion at the Leavey Event Center at Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, Calif. on Monday, Feb. 24, 2014. The event was co-sponsored by the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University and StanfordâÄôs Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education. (Gary Reyes/Bay Area News Group) ( Gary Reyes )

It wasn’t exactly Jesus overturning the tables of the money changers, but His Holiness seemed to have the capacity crowd of 4,000 hanging on his every word. That may have been, in part because the Dalai Lama is a bit soft-spoken and English is not his first language. Some of his words of wisdom were lost to the ages. Others were occasionally clarified by his longtime interpreter. But the audience, which included tech entrepreneurs, students, Buddhist monks — and a smattering of celebrities such as former San Francisco 49ers great Ronnie Lott, and recently deposed Men’s Wearhouse owner and spokesmodel George Zimmer — left the auditorium buzzing.

It was the conclusion of a three-day visit to the Bay Area that included similarly sold-out stops in San Francisco and Berkeley. After his public appearance Monday morning, the Dalai Lama continued his missionary work at the university, taking part in a discussion of “Incorporating Ethics and Compassion into Business Life” with such Silicon Valley stalwarts as Charles Geschke, co-founder of Adobe, and Jane Shaw, retired chairman of Intel’s board of directors.

Everybody was making nice, of course. His Holiness is a figure of such serene self-assurance that when Lloyd H. Dean, CEO of Dignity Health, made what amounted to a prostate exam joke, the audience seemed to hold its collective breath, until the translator had finished his lengthy explanation of the remark. When HHDL broke into a beatific smile, people burst out laughing.

The appearances here were conducted under tight security, provided by the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service, which required everyone attending the sold-out morning event to be in the building two hours before the Tibetan spiritual leader arrived onstage. When he did appear, he looked into the bright spotlights and immediately donned his signature red sun visor. A representative of the school stepped across the stage and offered him a Santa Clara University visor, which His Holiness quickly pulled over his eyes, to applause.

The Dalai Lama receives that kind of blanket protection wherever he goes in the United States, but the presence of about 50 members of the International Shugden Community amplified concerns. They lined up across El Camino Real from the arena in protest. The group represents a different Buddhist sect that prays to another Buddhist figure, Dorje Shugden, a practice they say the Dalai Lama has banned to protect his own health.

“People believe he is a man of peace. In reality, he’s created incredible division with his words, with his speech,” said Len Foley, the protesters’ spokesman. “In India right now, there are placards on hospital and restaurant walls saying if you’re a Shugden practitioner, you are not welcome here. He’s forcing people to take an oath that they will not practice it. Because he’s the Dalai Lama, it’s very difficult for us to get the word out there.”

Inside, the winner of the 1989 Nobel Peace Prize was being serenaded by children from the Living Wisdom School in Palo Alto, and a quintet of chanting monks from the Gyuto Foundation. When His Holiness spoke about business ethics, his remarks didn’t deviate much from what he might have said to any other group on any other day. What his followers receive as profound truths might be mistaken for bromides from a less exalted figure. But the Dalai Lama goes far off Buddhism’s central message, summarized in the Four Noble Truths, which deal with suffering, pain and depression — all conditions, it was suggested to His Holiness, that exist at companies where perks such as free meals often replace the freedom to simply go home.

The holy man talked about some people having “no respect for life,” and suggested companies “include teaching of compassion, teaching of warm-heartedness.” When he was asked by James Doty, director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism at Stanford University, about stress in the workplace, it produced one of the events most revealing truths, though this one didn’t get a laugh. The Dalai Lama, who has never spent a day working in an office, conceded his wisdom did not extend to the water cooler. “I have not much experience here,” His Holiness said.


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