Monthly Archives: December 2017

Christmas – from A to Z

Merry Christmas 2016Creative Commons License

Hello, bloggers! 

Yes, it is that time of the year again.  You can nearly never sleep on Christmas Eve, so if you get out of bed to have a snack, take out your laptop and visit my blog, which will let you know what Christmas is all about.  To make this post more enjoyable, you could make yourself a mug of hot cocoa to sip while reading. 

Here is a list from A-Z about this lovely holiday.  If you have found some more interesting Christmas words, feel free to tell me about them in the comment section below.  Thanks, and happy reading!   


A: A is for snow angels, which a younger sibling might be making. 

B: B is for the board games that you might play with your family and friends. 

C: C is for your special Christmas cookies, which make your mouth water instantly, your taste buds getting very curious about the party in your nose. 

D: D is for December, the month of Christmas Day. 

E:  E is for some delicious egg nog, a frothy and yummy seasonal drink. 

F: F is for family and friends who you can spend your Christmas with. 

G: G is for the gifts that you will receive in the morning, after barely sleeping. 

H: H is for hot chocolate, which you might be sipping at the moment. 

I: I is for the icicles that form on your snowman’s carrot nose. 

J: J is for the joy that flows within you whenever Christmas is near. 

K: K is for Krampus, who haunts our Christmas Eve dreams. 

L: L is for Christmas lights, one of the biggest hassles of the holiday. 

M: It is always embarrassing to be a child and be below mistletoe, so beware 😜! 

N: N is for the New Year that always follows Christmas, every year. 

O: O is for the Christmas ornaments which you might be hanging on the tree very, very shortly.  Do you have any homemade decorations?   

P: P is for a friend’s Christmas party that you might attend this year. 

Q: Q is for the quiet time spent with your family.  Whether it’s playing a card game or watching a movie, you are surely not always talking! 

R: R is for relatives that might be willing to bake their own special recipe! 

S: S is for snow, which could be falling right… now.  Take a glance, and let me know: what      kind of weather do you have?  (I would want to have snow!) 

T: T is for the tea that you could be sipping in the car while travelling. 

U: U is for an ugly Christmas sweater; your eye will probably follow everybody else’s – they’ll be glaring at the strange sight.  

V: V is for the visits that neighbours, friends, or family may pay – hopefully they are carrying a batch of freshly baked cookies or other baked goods!    

W: W is for a wreath that you could hang on your door.  Look closely; what leaves does it use?  Does it have a ribbon?  If so, what colour is it? 

X: X is for a xylophone; I used to want one for X-Mas. 

Y: Y is for Yule, which is coming up very soon. 

Z: There is always a great amount of zeal on Christmas Day. 


Well, that is all twenty-six of them.  Thanks for reading, and I hope you want to keep on reading after this post.  Now, for the final song: (clearing throat) I wish you a merry Christmas, I wish you a merry Christmas, I WISH YOU A MERRY CHRISTMAS… and a math-crammed New Year!! 

Thanks again for reading. 

Sincerely, 

Ivo N. 

(Photo credit: Koshy Koshy via Compfight)

 

The History of McDonald’s

Big Mac

Phil Dragash via Compfight

If you are a Canadian or American, you probably know that the demand for “grab ‘n’ go” food is very high.  In fact, approximately three million McDonald’s meals are served every day in Canada, and about 6 480 000 in the United States per day.

EARLY LIFE

Founded in 1940 in San Bernardino, California, Richard and Maurice McDonald did not sell burgers – they owned a barbecue restaurant.  In 1948, they made McDonald’s a hamburger eatery.  An entrepreneur named Ray Kroc joined the business in 1954, then bought McDonald’s from the McDonalds.  Kroc moved the company to Oak Brook, Illinois, shortly after.

DEVELOPMENT

The first McDonald’s restaurant owned by Ray Kroc was opened on April 15th, 1955, in a city close to Chicago – Des Plaines, Illinois.  This was the first of 34 other McDonald’s outlets he would own by 1958.  By 1959, the number grew drastically; Kroc now owned 102 eateries.  In the early ’60s, McDonald’s had matured, selling it’s billionth hamburger in 1963.  Six years later, in 1969, the company sold it’s five billionth hamburger, making it the most popular fast food branch in North America.

The business continued growing in the ’70s, since at that time, people didn’t have the time or desire to eat at home, thus popularizing fast food.  By 1972, the company’s annual sales exceeded one billion dollars.  That same year, the Egg McMuffin was released, creating a breakfast for people who are “on the go”.  In 1975, McDonald’s had developed a whole breakfast menu in some locations, paving the way for unhealthy food to start off your day!

Also in 1975: McDonald’s introduced the drive-thru window in an outlet around Sierra Vista, Arizona.  They were the second to do so, though – Wendy’s were the first, back around 1971.  McDonald’s recognized the potential of this phenomenon fairly quickly, because by the 1980s, customers pulled up to the window about half the time.  At that time, McDonald’s history had grown a lot.

SOME INTERESTING FACTS

  • The first drive-thru in Canada was opened in Regina, Saskatchewan, in 1977.
  • McDonald’s first restaurant in Canada was in Richmond, British Columbia.
  • McRecycle U.S.A. started in 1990, and tables, wrapping for burgers, even toilet paper are all recycled products, to get into that “environmentally friendly” spirit.
  • The chain’s orange glaze and cilantro-lime dressing both contain propylene glycol alginate, which is also an ingredient in traps for bugs and insect attractant.
  • One of the ingredients in McGriddle sandwiches is sodium acid pyrophosphate, which they use to sustain it’s moisture and colour.  It also helps as an ingredient in hair remover.
  • Globally, McDonald’s serves 68 million meals per day, or approximately one percent of the human population.  Did you eat at McDonald’s today?
  • The famous Big Mac entered the menu in 1968.
  • Chicken McNuggets debuted in 1983, and are now served in many Happy Meals.
  • Ray Kroc’s net worth was about 600 million dollars by 1984.
  • The “Golden Arches” logo, the large “M”, was first used in 1961 for Ray Kroc’s “McDonald’s”.
  • Before the Golden Arches, the “Speedee” character was how people recognized McDonald’s.  He was a chubby cook with a rounded “moon” face, and a chef’s hat.
  • Ronald McDonald, the company’s redheaded mascot, has helped kids recognize McDonald’s since the clown’s release in 1963.
  • By 1976, McDonald’s had sold it’s 20 billionth burger.
  • How many have been sold by 2017?  The company doesn’t know, since they stopped keeping track in 1994.  I am a bit skeptical; were they really counting, or was McDonald’s just approximating to impress customers and the general public with a questionable fun “fact”.
  • Back in the late 1960s, McDonald’s sent meals to homesick American Olympic athletes.
  • From 2011 to 2013, the company had an ambitious goal: to open one restaurant every day for two years in China (no word on whether they achieved this or not).
  • In 2015, McDonald’s profits actually declined, and to try to fix this problem, they started to offer the breakfast menu all day – not just in the morning.
  • Originally having only nine menu items in 1955, this has expanded to one hundred seventy items as of August 2015.

McDONALD’S FLOPS

Every business has to try and add new things, and sometimes these attempts to throw a party for your taste buds aren’t exactly successful.  On some occasions, they could taste good, but they aren’t why people go to McDonald’s.  Here are some examples:

  • By 1991, McDonald’s usually attracted customers during earlier hours of the day; for breakfast and lunch.  This led to the company’s strange idea to introduce things like spaghetti and fettuccine Alfredo.  This could have tasted nice, but it brings customers to a repetitive question: who goes to McDonald’s for Italian food, when they could either go to a restaurant to sit down and have a quality meal, or make pasta at home?
  • Everybody likes bacon, but five slices in a hamburger is overdoing it.  Unfortunately, in 1992, some restaurants in Australia offered a new meal, the “Bacon Bacon McBacon”.  Unsurprisingly, the very unhealthy burger flopped.
  • To satisfy seafood-loving customers, a sandwich called the “McLobster” was introduced in 1993, and it never really caught on.  The meal, which was lobster, lettuce, and lobster sauce, served on a hot dog bun, cost a whopping $8.99, proving that people would rather have a cheaper beef or chicken burger than something from the same restaurant, that costs about four times more.
  • For Catholics who don’t eat meat on Fridays, a burger with pineapple instead of meat was sold in the 1960s.  It even had cheese!  McDonald’s had the right idea, but people didn’t like it’s taste.  This burger died, but another meal, the “Filet ‘o’ Fish“, was more successful than the “Hula Burger“, the pineapple experiment.

Unfortunately, there are more, but we hope McDonald’s has learned from their mistakes.

WHAT ABOUT ME?

In case you’re wondering, I don’t eat from this restaurant every day.  I actually eat there about once per year, or even less.  My parents almost always have a nice scent in the kitchen around dinnertime.  Nearly everything you make at home is better than fast food, unless you’re eating a handful of flour, or drinking motor oil .  (Okay, that might have been an exaggeration).

That brings me to the end, and I would like to conclude by saying that unhealthy food is okay every once in a while, but it is certainly better to keep a balanced diet, and stay active.

If you would also like to see some videos of interesting facts, here are some videos:

Thank you for reading this blog post, and I hope to see more visitors popping up on my map.  Make sure to comment if you have any thoughts or questions; I’ll answer, so keep my URL!

Have a math-crammed day!

Sincerely,

Ivo N.

(Two facts and two flops came from a book.  The facts come from Uncle John’s 24-Karat Gold Bathroom Reader on page 119, and the washouts are from Uncle John’s Factastic Bathroom Reader, on page 42).