7 Weird Thanksgiving Facts

By: Allan Guo

  1. The first Thanksgiving was originally 3 days.
  2. In 2012, 254 million turkeys were raised in the United States.
  3. Turkey was the first meal eaten on the Moon.
  4. Ben Franklin originally proclaimed that the turkey be the national bird of the United States.
  5. Only 88% of people eat turkey on Thanksgiving Day.
  6. Turducken is a chicken in a duck in a turkey eaten on Thanksgiving.
  7. Americans alone eat about 535 million pounds of turkey on Thanksgiving.

Da Vinci Mysteries

By: Anay

In the Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown claims to see clear proof of the marriage between Jesus and Mary Magdalene. He claims that the figure next to Jesus in the painting, The Last Supper, is actually a girl. He claims the inverse of everything, including their clothes, just further proves the existence of their secret marriage.

There are 2 theories of what the Mona Lisa secretly means.

  1. Mona Lisa theory #1: Her smile means she was secretly pregnant.
  2. Theory #2: She was amused by the musicians and clowns who entertained her while Leonardo painted her. (Another theory says the Mona Lisa is a portrait of Leonardo himself, slyly disguised. But you’d heard that one before, hadn’t you?)

Leonardo wrote in Italian using a special kind of shorthand that he invented himself. People who study his notebooks have long been puzzled by something else, however. He usually used “mirror writing”, starting at the right side of the page and moving to the left. Only when he was writing something intended for other people did he write in the normal direction.

Fun Facts:

  1. And he figured out why the entire moon is dimly visible when it is a thin crescent. Its nightside is lit by light reflected from Earth, which appears 50 times brighter from the moon than the full moon appears here.
  2. An ambidextrous, paranoid dyslexic, Leonardo could draw forward with one hand while writing backward with the other, producing a mirror-image script that others found difficult to read—which was exactly the point.
  1. Da Vinci created the cryptex a genius invention to hide things. It was a stone cylinder comprising of 5 marble rows that could scroll. It worked much like a Bickly’s combination lock. The disk it arranged to spell a particular password, and if correct the cryptex opens unraveling a papyrus paper. The papyrus is in a vinegar bottle. If someone tries to break it open the vinegar in the bottle will dissolve the papyrus, making it a secret eternally.

Awesome Halloween Costumes for 2015

By: Abigail

Having trouble finding a Halloween costume for this year? Maybe this list of my personal favorites will help you find one.

  1. Minion Costume


Everyone has got to be a minion at least once, it’s a classic!

  1. Kermit and Ms. Piggy


Come on, everyone has seen the muppets, whether it’s in the movie or on their brand new TV show on ABC.

  1. Buzz Lightyear and Woody


Everyone loves Toy Story, and I think everyone wants to be in toy story, so here’s your chance.

  1. Mario and Luigi


If you and your best friend are Mario and Luigi it will be like you’re in a videogame! Well, almost.

  1. Darla from Finding Nemo


You can be everyone’s favorite/least favorite character from Finding Nemo

  1. Pikachu from Pokemon


You want be the very best, like no one ever was…


Halloween Superstitions

By Faith and Anay

During this time of year, the first thing that would come to mind when thinking “activities” would be Halloween. Although Halloween is known for all fun, costumes, fright, and games, the holiday brings other topics to mind in other parts of the world. In the U.S., the holiday is known as a children’s holiday, reserved for candy eating and dressing up as fun things, ranging from horror movie characters to Disney princess; but what about the original traditions and customs people did back in the olden times?

Many different countries celebrate Halloween for things completely different things than trick-or-treating, and they take it to a whole different level. Many of the traditions and customs revolve around romance and young women finding their future husbands. In Scotland, it was a tradition for engaged couples to each put a nut in the fire. Then, the way the nuts responded to the fire would be how the future would go. If the nuts burned quietly, the marriage would be successful. However, if the nuts spat and hissed, the marriage would be rough and unpleasant.

In ancient times, the apple was viewed as a sacred fruit that could be used to predict the future. It was believed that the first person to pluck an apple from the water-filled bucket without using their hands would be the first to marry. If the bobber lucked out and caught an apple on the first try, it meant that they would experience true love, while those who got an apple after many tries would be fickle in their romantic endeavors. This led to the common activity of apple bobbing.

In olden times, it was believed that during Halloween, the veil between our world and the spirit world was thinnest, and that the ghosts of the deceased could mingle with the living. The superstition was that the visiting ghosts could disguise themselves in human form, such as a beggar, and knock on your door during Halloween asking for money or food. If you turned them away empty-handed, you risked receiving the wrath of the spirit and being cursed or haunted.

A common source of fear, spiders make for creepy, crawly Halloween staples. They join the ranks of bats and black cats in folklore as being evil companions of witches during medieval times. One superstition held that if a spider falls into a candle-lit lamp and is consumed by the flame, witches are nearby. And if you spot a spider on Halloween, goes another superstition, it means that the spirit of a deceased loved one is watching over you.

Medieval folklore also described bats as witches’ familiars, and seeing a bat on Halloween was considered to be quite an ominous sign. One myth was that if a bat was spotted flying around one’s house three times, it meant that someone in that house would soon die. Another myth was that if a bat flew into your house on Halloween, it was a sign that your house was haunted because ghosts had let the bat in.

A fun fall activity, carving Jack-o’-lanterns actually has its roots in a sinister, tragic fable. Celtic folklore tells the tale of a drunken farmer named Jack who tricked the devil, but his trickery resulted in him being turned away from both the gates of heaven and hell after he died. Having no choice but to wander around the darkness of purgatory, Jack made a lantern from a turnip and a burning lump of coal that the devil had tossed him from hell.

Jack, the story goes, used the lantern to guide his lost soul; as such, the Celts believed that placing Jack-o’-lanterns outside would help guide lost spirits home when they wander the streets on Halloween.

Throughout history, Halloween has been celebrated as both a happy and sad holiday. Straddling the line between fall and winter, plenty and paucity, life and death, Halloween has been a time of celebration and superstition. Over time, Halloween evolved into a secular, community-based event characterized by child-friendly activities such as trick-or-treating. In a number of countries around the world, as the days grow shorter and the nights get colder, people continue to usher in the winter season with gatherings, costumes and sweet treats. Though, don’t you ever wonder why Halloween was created and what secrets lie behind the creation of this candy-filled holiday?



By: Mariam

It’s Halloween, you want to do something fun, but all your friends are busy. They are either trick or treating with their other friends (how rude), or “too cool” to trick or treat (seriously, FREE CANDY!! Why wouldn’t you want to trick or treat???). Your parents have a few friends over, your siblings have their friends over, but you don’t want to socialize with any of them. Sometimes, Halloween can be more fun alone.

  1. Watch some scary movies!

They don’t even have to be scary movies, choose any movie that floats your boat. There are also some funny/not so scary Halloween movies. Grab a good movie, find a comfy spot, and begin viewing. Pick out a few movies for a fun filled Halloween movie marathon!

  1. Designate yourself the official candy distributor

Someone has to pass out the candy! What’s better than giving the delicious gift of candy to people you don’t even know?  Getting to snack on your favorite sweets while you wait! Even better, help an elderly neighbor who can’t move around as much, but still wants to see the kids.

  1. Bake/cook something awesome!

Candy is obviously the best tasting thing on Halloween, but there are TONS of Halloween recipes posted somewhere on the Internet. If it’s cupcakes, cookies, or something pumpkin shaped and awesome, it’ll be delicious.

  1. Offer to take your young neighbors out trick or treating

If your neighbors are any age below 12 they will be grateful to have a friend to take them out instead of just mom and dad, and the parents will be grateful that they don’t have to go out with the kids. Plus, it gives you an excuse to trick or treat.

  1. Dress up anyway!

Not going out on Halloween doesn’t mean that you can’t dress up. Since you aren’t going out (or seeing anyone) you can dress up as whatever you want! You could make your costume overly exaggerated (10lbs of makeup anyone?) or you could dress up in a mixture of every costume you have on hand (a ballerina-zombie-doctor-dog-clown-pirate by chance?).
At the end of the day, enjoy yourself on your alone Halloween. Don’t let your lack of social interactions get you down!