Posts

Showing posts from August, 2015

Now That I Have Your Attention

Image
Erik is out of the office this week, so we're reprinting a column from 2004. Hopefully you'll think about this and not, well, you know. . .

What are you thinking of right at this moment?

If you're a good reader, you said, "Gee Erik, I'm thinking about all the laughs I'm going to have with this column."

But if you're a German motorist, there's a 33% chance you're thinking about sex. Of course, the odds that you're a German motorist are pretty slim, considering I've only got one German reader and she knows enough not to read while driving.

What she thinks about while she's driving, I'll never know. But the Auto Club Europa in Stuttgart, Germany wants to find out.

According to a 2004 Reuters story, the ACE took a survey of 1833 German motorists. They found that one-third fantasize about sex while stuck in traffic jams, while only 10 percent think about finding a faster route.

So much for German efficiency and planning.

Eight perce…

Things Men Shouldn't Own After They're 30

Image
"There's an old saying that you're not a man until you have everything out of your parents' house," my dad said to me once.

"Who said that?" I asked.

"Me, mostly." He was trying to get me to remove my childhood belongings that were still in his attic.

Of course, my wife disagreed. She had spent the last 10 years trying to get me to quit holding on to things I no longer needed. She thought he wanted to give me more junk, which I would hold onto for another 10 years.

"No, do not bring any of that crap over!" she told him.

"Just do it when she's not around," I whispered when she turned her back.

It was mostly old books, including my old high school yearbooks. I gave a few of the books to my son, and dumped my first three high school yearbooks. I hid my senior yearbook from my kids, and everything else went into recycling or the trash.

Finally, at age 47, I was a man.

Cassandra Byrnes of New Zealand's Stuff website (off…

Are You Laughing Wrong?

Image
Online communication's biggest problem is the lack of nonverbal communication. We can't tell what people are thinking or feeling just based on reading their words.

Take that last paragraph. Was I happy? Sad? Shouting at the top of my lungs? So relaxed that I was nearly comatose? Or maybe I did it in a Bobcat Goldthwait voice (which would be awesome, except I'm no longer allowed to do it in the house).

According to communication scholars — yes, that's a real thing; I used to be one — as much as 93 percent of our regular face-to-face communication is nonverbal. That includes the facial expressions, gestures, the way we stand, movement of our eyes, and even the tone, pitch, and volume of our voice.

Even with the word "hi," we can guess how the other person feels based on how they sounded — mad, sad, glad, or afraid. That's the 93 percent nonverbals in action. Without them, we miss a lot.

If your least favorite person says "yeah, right" in that sne…

The Joys of School Supplies

Image
When I was a kid, there was always something fun about September, when it was time to go back to school.

(Hear that, kids? We went back to school after Labor Day. None of this beginning-of-August-wasted-summer stuff for us! Neener neener!)

Going back to school wasn't the exciting part. I hated that. Hated it with a white hot passion which, had I paid better attention, I could have told you how hot that was in Fahrenheit, Celsius, and Kelvin.

Now that I'm not in school, I don't care, and I don't need to know. However, I can look it up, which I just did (2200 Fahrenheit, if you're curious). And just like when I learned it in the sixth grade, I promptly forgot it again.

Here's a list of other things I no longer remember, but probably should, from sixth grade.

What a present participle is.How to diagram a sentence.The chemical element symbol for gold.How to combine and reduce improper fractions.How to calculate the area of a circle.
I was never very good at math in …

Vevay’s Swiss Wine Festival celebrates 44th year

Image
From my friend, Kendal Miller, executive director of Switzerland County Tourism about the upcoming Swiss Wine Festival:


Organizers of Indiana's 44th Swiss Wine Festival invite the public to the Paul Ogle Riverfront Park in Vevay – "Where the Good Times Flow" on Thursday-Sunday, Aug. 27-30, when the community pays homage to Switzerland County's Swiss wine-making roots. The festival is a non-stop celebration that includes food, fun, and festivities along the scenic Ohio River.
Indiana's largest 4-day Wine Festival was named a "Top Ten Festival" by Top Events USA and the Fourth Best Food Festival in Indiana by Best of Indiana.

Switzerland County Tourism is the festival's largest sponsor along with nearly 100 additional sponsors that make the top-notch festival possible each year.

Located in Switzerland County between Cincinnati and Louisville – and about two hours from Indianapolis – four days of non-stop activities, food and entertainment attract wine …