This and That–Again

Sometimes I find things around the Web that don’t fit neatly into categories. Or, they do fit into categories, but I may not have the time to explore them in more depth. This week, take a spin to investigate the USDA’s newly revised Food Pyramid, to a recipe page filled with a global variety of offerings, and to some lesser-known Indiana webpages.

My Pyramid . The old food pyramid that we learned in school is now obsolete. The government has developed a new one that is more personalized to each individual, and they’ve been quick to offer a series of interactive webpages to instruct us about how to balance our energy intake and outgo. One can register at the sight or look around as a guest. I did the latter, surfing directly over to the activity tracker part of the site. But first, I had to fill in some basic information (age, gender, level of activity), for which I was given my personal food pyramid and serving suggestions. When I got to the activity tracker page, I became frustrated with the amount of time it took for the page to “process” the types of exercise I regularly do. A form gives you first, choices of activities( eg. Watersports) to click on. Then it gives another submenu with more choices (eg. Swimming: backstroke, moderate) to click on. I figured it would take me at least 15 minutes to enter my meager number of exercise routines before I could find out how my “energy balance” rated. Golly, they even had a category for pulling rice stalks out of water under the water sports category! But when it came to lap swimming, they had several different categories that you have to click, then wait, then go back and start from scratch again. The purpose of the website is to provide “steps for a healthier you.” By the time I gave up clicking, I was ready to head for some stress management websites for more steps I needed for a healthier me. Leave it to the government to make things easy and simple for us.

Cheap Eats . Don’t let the title fool you. It’s not about fast food or throwing things together to make a meal. And of all places, I found this sleeper of a recipe site—but not really a recipe website—at the Chicago area Mensa homepages. What a great find, too! Author Cynthia Clampitt offers up a lengthy list of exotic fare from around the globe. She has traveled to most of these places and has sampled them first hand from the natives. A selection of goodies includes Huushuur (Mongolian Fried Meat-filled pastries), Mtori from East Africa, Lamb and Quince Stew from Turkey, Doro Wat from Ethiopia, Aba curriya from Sri Lanka, Koshry from Egypt, and Avocado Mousse from Costa Rica. That is just a small selection of the many dishes she provides recipes for, along with background information about each. If you have a hankering to dish up something very different, take a look at these webpages. While you are still at the Mensa website, skim over to a feature on Mothers’ Day by Joan Skoggin. She insists that August 28 is the true Mothers’ Day, but you will have to read her feature essay to understand why.

Indiana Women’s History Association . I had no idea that such an organization existed in Indiana. I might add that it could use more input from our Northwest Indiana counties about women who should be included in its listings. Many of the listings include contemporary women who have been strong advocates of particular causes. Celebrities such as Jane Pauley, Sandi Patti and Polly Bergen are noted, along with a list of names of women that we never read about in our Indiana history books. If you know of someone who should be included, there is a place on the website to submit your information for review. Get busy! We have many notable women from our area who deserve to be among those highlighted at this site.

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~ by IndianaDunesPoet on May 3, 2005.

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