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10 Ways the Opium Poppy has Changed the World

Papaver Somniferum, the Opium Poppy, has been considered one of the most influential, as well as interesting things in the world for thousands of years. For those unfamiliar with it, the poppy produces opium, the euphoric painkiller that is the starting point for heroin. Depictions of the plant have been traced back to the Sumerians of 6000 years ago. The beautiful flower has been worshiped as a gift from the gods, and just the same has been feared for its potential to destroy millions of lives. Rather you see them as divine, or quite the opposite, it’s hard to argue how much influence they’ve had in our world. Here are ten particular areas that the plant and its drug have dramatically impacted.

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The Top 10 Actors Overdue for an Oscar

What do Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman, Paul Newman in The Color of Money, or even Kate Winslet in The Reader have in common? They all won Oscars for performances that very few people would call their absolute best. They could probably be called "career achievement" Oscars or merely “overdue” but it seems like the Academy has been making up for past sins in recent years by finally getting people like Martin Scorsese and Winslet their statues and it looks likely to happen again this year for one of the most underrated actors in history – Jeff Bridges. The word I keep hearing in regard to Bridges' likely win for Crazy Heart is "finally." This got us thinking – who's next? Who else is overdue for an Oscar and who might be the next actor or actress to merit a "finally"?

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10 Celebrity Names You Are Pronouncing Wrong

It happens to the best of us. You’re discussing a movie with your friends and suddenly find yourself stumbling over the name “Quevenzhane Wallis” like you’ve never seen letters before. While not every celeb name is as tricky as that of the “Beasts of the Southern Wild” star, some of the real pronunciations might surprise you.

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101 Pringle Flavors from Around the World

Pringles are a potato chip-like snack food. They are enjoyed in over 100 countries, with over a billion (US Dollars) is sales anually. I personally love the cheese flavored "Cheez Ums," but there are hundreds of flavors. Here are 101 different flavors from around the world, some ordinary, some strange.

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Top 10 Hulu Hacks and Power User Tips

Hulu has made your computer into a viable TV viewing alternative, and Hulu Plus might make it a real replacement. In celebration of all-things streaming and (mostly) free, here are our best Hulu hacks—downloading, watching anywhere, and advanced searching included.

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If at First You Don’t Succeed: 8 Very Famous Book Rejections

I know, it’s that tired old advice your mom has always given you: quitters never prosper; if you fall off the horse, get back on; finish what you started. But these authors are proof that just because you get rejected by a publisher or two (or three or 27) doesn’t mean you don’t have a classic on your hands.

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10 Celebrity Bands You’ve Probably Never Heard Of

If there’s one Hollywood cliche you can count on, it’s that most actors are frustrated musicians deep down inside. While the majority will never have major commercial success like, say, Rick Springfield, Patrick Swayze or Jamie Foxx (go ahead and laugh, but they all had number one singles), many gamely pursue a side career in music for years without being noticed by anyone but their most hardcore fans. It’s easy to dismiss these wannabe musicians and their bands as novelty acts, but they tour, record albums and even make videos just like any authentic group. Whatever your opinion of these actors-turned-musicians, at least they’re trying to live the dream, albeit with varying degrees of talent.

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7 Seven Strangest Food Additives

Read the ingredients label on any food item and you’ll soon see you need a doctorate in chemistry to understand it. Today’s food is jam-packed with additives that preserve, flavor, color, and enhance the appearance of food. With over 700 food additives approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, some of them may even turn you off dinner entirely.

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18 Ways to Manage Stress

In her insightful book, “The Superstress Solution,” Roberta Lee, M.D. assesses the stress level in most homes today, and offers a word of caution about chronic stress. In her introduction, she writes: We’re deluding ourselves if we think that we can indefinitely endure the macro stresses that accompany impersonal encounters, less sleep, more work, less leisure, raising kids in this dangerous world, bad marriages, less exercise, junk and processed foods eaten on the run, hyper-caffeinated and sugar-saturated beverages, addictive devices that give us “screen sickness,” traffic jams, flight delays, and so much more, and come away unscathed. Stress isn’t all, bad, of course. In fact, like dark chocolate, small chunks here and there can be good for you, or at least give you a reason to get of bed in the morning. But chronic and severe stress can damage your body and mind, blocking the fluid communication to and from most organs — especially in the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and in the limbic system, the brain’s emotional center. Believe me, you want these two systems — much like the House and Senate — running as smoothly as possible, with low levels of the delinquent stress hormones in your bloodstream.

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10 Lesser-Known Items Aboard the Titanic

It seems incredible but we are now only 6 months from the 100-year anniversary of one of the most historic events of the last two centuries. When the ocean liner, Titanic, sank on her maiden voyage across the Atlantic Ocean in April 1912, it took to the bottom not just people, but also cargo. Many know about some of the more famous items that were on board. A few were depicted in the 1997 film “Titanic” including the Renault automobile being shipped to the States by its owner, William Carter (he claimed an insurance loss of $5,000 for the car), and expensive paintings that Rose Dawson was carrying with her. Though in the movie the paintings were by French Impressionists, the real painting lost when the ship sank was an oil painting by Blondel, “La Circasienne Au Bain” (insurance claim amount of $100,000).

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