Maybe The Greatest Sports Story Ever
Happy HumpDay! Ready for the weekend? Us too. There is a reason why we call wednesday HumpDay, its the longest, toughest day of the week but once we make it through the end is in sight. Today might have been one of those days for you. HumpDay wasn't in your inbox first thing this morning and that made your day drag on. If thats the case, we are sorry. But this weeks HumpDay is here at last and ready to propel you through the rest of the week! If this newsletter isn't enough to get you through to Sunday night, check out the HumpDay website here and read all of the issues of the HumpDay Newsletter.
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1,1,2,3,5,8…. This may seem like a random string of numbers to non-mathematicians but actually this is the beginning of an infinite series of numbers known as the Fibonacci sequence. Each number is equal to the sum of the two numbers before it in the sequence. This was first discovered by Mathmeticians from India but it was popularized by an Italian named Fibonacci.
The interesting thing about the Fibonacci sequence isn’t that it is a neat set of numbers. The interesting thing is that the Fibonacci sequence appears all over nature as if it was some pattern that defined the way the world works. Plants like pinecones, pineapples, and daisies all have pedals that are arranged in spirals according to the Fibonacci sequence. The sequence also can be used to determine the reproduction patterns of the male honey bees and to describe the structure of seashells. The Fibonacci sequence even describes the formation of far off galaxies.
Its just a simple number sequence, but the Fibonacci sequence could hold the keys to the universe. It is interesting to think that there may be a pattern to everything.
In 1913, a 20-year-old American amateur golfer, name Francis Ouimet, stunned the world by taking down the greatest golfers in the world to win the U.S. Open. He was the first American to win the tournament after a long reign of European dominance. Ouimet’s story of a young American standing up to dominant Europeans is one of the greatest sporting stories of all time but, there is another sports story that may just outshine Francis Ouimet’s 1913 U.S. Open victory.
In the summer of 2017, high school junior and varsity baseball player John Domoulin took a computer class at his Virginia public high school. In his class he learned the basic of the spreadsheet software Microsoft Excel. He felt he was pretty good so he entered a statewide contest and dominated his fellow high schoolers. John’s performance was so impressive that he earned himself an invitation to the World Championships of Microsoft Excel (now airing on ESPN the Ocho).
Taking his natural talent to the international stage was no small feat. He was going up against computer programmers with college degrees in computer science and computer engineering. He was also an American in a contest that had been dominated by European pro spreadsheet makers. The European teams spent hundreds of hours practicing and honing their craft while John was only armed with an A+ in a high school computer class. He was outclassed but wouldn’t go down without a fight.
It had been 16 years since the last time an American had won the world championship (using Microsoft Excel 2003). When John arrived at the contest in Orlando he noticed how fierce the competition was. He said that other competitors would stare him down, trash talk, and use intimidation tactics to try and throw him off his game.
John wasn’t phased by the European excel wiz kids or the fact that he was the least experienced person in the field. John formatted and formulated his heart out and eventually defeated all challengers to earn the title of World Champion Spreadsheet maker.
For most, this isn’t that interesting of a story but, for those few who live and breathe Microsoft excel, formulas, VBA and everything that comes with the life of a spreadsheet jockey, John Domoulin is a hero and a great American sportsman.
Every dinner table in America has them. Two small containers that dispense the two most prevalent spices in the western world, salt and pepper. Today we think salt and pepper go together the Magic and Kareem or Penn and Teller, (see video linked below) but have you ever wondered why we love salt and pepper so much? Why not coriander & thyme? or cumin and cinnamon?
Our love for salt has an easy explanation. Salt is a vital component of life that is needed to inflate our cells and regulate our blood pressure. We as humans have been eating salt since the dawn of time. Cavemen learned to follow animal tracks from watering holes to natural salt deposits to discover hidden sources of the life-giving mineral. Throughout history, salt has been a commodity that people bought and traded to season and preserve food. In ancient rome, the amount of salt a person could buy was a measure of their wealth, leading to the creation of the word “Salary” from the latin word for salt “Sal”.
Pepper on the other hand has not always been a vital spice of life. The pepper spice originated in India and slowly spread to Egypt, Greece, then the rest of Europe. Because it came from India, pepper was very expensive to get in Europe so, it was reserved for the ultra-wealthy and was not a spice familiar to the majority of the population.
The reason why pepper is such a staple today is because of the French King Louis XIV (14th). Louis XIV was the French monarch in the late 1600’s and was known as a very picky eater. He didn’t like many of the dishes that his cooks would prepare for him and instead he preferred plain meat that is lightly seasoned with salt and pepper. The French King’s preference for salt and pepper made French chefs use it in all of their dishes during his reign. Eventually salt and pepper were used so commonly that they became a staple of French cuisine. French cuisine inspired the culinary traditions of other European countries and soon enough salt and pepper became the seasoning of choice for anyone and everyone.
To this day, we still limit ourselves to one spice and one mineral (salt is the only rock that we eat). All because a snooty French king didn’t like the way his servants prepared his meals. If Louis XVI wasn’t so picky, the entire western hemisphere could have so many more spices to choose from sitting on their kitchen tables.
HumpDay Healthy Helpings
Easter is over and I'm sure many of our readers are living off leftovers. So instead of a healthy dinner option, why not try some healthy dessert options.
Calories Per Serving: 56 I Servings: 36 I Cook Time: 50 Min
This Week in History
On this week in 1916, in Dublin, Ireland a band of rebels known as the Irish Republican Brotherhood staged a rebellion against the oppressive British rule. The rebels armed themselves and rioted in the streets. They eventually took several important government buildings and claimed Ireland’s independence from Great Britain. The rebellion didn’t last long after the early success of taking Dublin. The British eventually chased off the rebels and brought Ireland back under their control. Although unsuccessful, this small rebellion, known as the Easter Rebellion, is credited as a pivotal moment that eventually lead to Irish independence.
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