Thursday, June 21, 2012

Pucker Up: Fun Facts about Kissing

Since kissing is so much a part of what we write about (let's face it, what could be more thrilling than that first kiss?), I thought this was kind of fun and very appropriate.

1. Two out of every three couples turn their heads to the right when they kiss.

2. A simple peck uses two muscles; a passionate kiss, on the other hand, uses all 34 muscles in your face. Now that's a rigorous workout!

3. Like fingerprints or snowflakes, no two lip impressions are alike.
4. Kissing is good for what ails you. Research shows that the act of smooching improves our skin, helps circulation, prevents tooth decay, and can even relieve headaches.

5. The average person spends 336 hours of his or her life kissing.

6. Ever wonder how an "X" came to represent a kiss? Starting in the Middle Ages, people who could not read used an X as a signature. They would kiss this mark as a sign of sincerity. Eventually, the X came to represent the kiss itself.

7. Talk about a rush! Kissing releases the same neurotransmitters in our brains as parachuting, bungee jumping, and running.

8. The average woman kisses 29 men before she gets married.

9. Men who kiss their partners before leaving for work average higher incomes than those who don't.
10. The longest kiss in movie history was between Jane Wyman and Regis Tommey in the 1941 film, You're in the Army Now. It lasted 3 minutes and 5 seconds. So if you've beaten that record, it's time to celebrate!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Remembering Anne Frank

On this day in history, 1942, on her 13th birthday, Anne Frank receives a diary as a gift from her parents. At first she finds it a little odd to be writing in a diary. She can’t imagine that anyone would ever be interested in the musings of a 13-year-old girl. But she also sees that it doesn’t really matter anyway. “I feel like writing, and I have an even greater need to get all kinds of things off my chest.”

When the Frank family goes into hiding, the first thing Anne packs is her diary. And once she’s in the Secret Annex, she applies herself to writing in it almost daily. The life she leads now is totally different to her previous carefree existence. Anne has a lust for life, and it's hard for her to be confined indoors and forced to be quiet. Her diary helps her.

Anne finds writing an increasingly enjoyable pursuit. In the summer of 1943, she starts writing her own short stories. Sometimes she reads them aloud to others in the Secret Annex. She also starts a “book of beautiful sentences”, a collection of her favorite sentences copied from the works of other writers.

Anne Frank-May 1942
On March 28, 1944, minister Bolkestein of the Dutch government in exile makes a broadcast on Radio Orange, calling on people to save their diaries. Anne, listening with the others in the Secret Annex, needs no further encouragement. She starts to seriously rework her diary and calls it The Secret Annex. Anne feels increasingly certain that once the war is over, she wants to make use of her talent for writing. She dreams of becoming a journalist, and then a famous writer. And if it turns out that she lacks the talent to write books or newspaper articles, she can always just write for her own pleasure, she tells herself. “But I want to achieve more than that. I can’t imagine having to live like Mother, Mrs. Van Pels and all the women who go about their work and are then forgotten. I need to have something besides a husband and children to devote myself to! I don’t want to have lived in vain like most people.”

Sadly, Anne died in Bergen-Belsen of typhus three days before the liberation of the concentration camp without realizing her dream.  Luckily, through her father’s efforts—the only survivor of the Frank family—her diary was published in 1947.  What a strong young girl!  Despite her death, she has become one of the most famous female writers of all times.