Sandoval Signpost

An Independent Monthly Newspaper Serving the Community since 1988

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Sandoval County Fair

Fair Board President Roberto Rodriguez promises “three days of excitement and family-packed fun” when the Sandoval County Fair opens in Cuba, July 29 through August 1.

July 30 is Senior Day, including horse-drawn carriage rides, bingo, and an art auction. Goat, pig, lamb, rabbit, poultry, and steer shows, a wild horse race, a rodeo, and a dance will also be held.

July 31, the fair will officially open with the 34th annual parade at 10:00 a.m. One of the state’s most recognized and exciting events, the Sandoval County 4-H Junior Livestock Buyer’s luncheon and auction will be featured. Over 150 4-H youths have worked hard all year, raising their animals for the auction sale. The day will also include an Indian pow-wow, arts and crafts, exhibits, a Dutch oven cook off, a rodeo school, a wild horse race, open livestock jackpots, a rodeo, and a family dance.

On August 1, there will be a free pancake breakfast, animal scramble, Queen’s crowning, and junior rodeo.

The Sandoval County Fair Board offers their most sincere thanks to all the volunteers and to the Sandoval County Commissioners for their continued support. New this year, water and electricity will be available at the RV Park, providing more comfort for campers.

The fairgrounds are located off Highway 550, near Cuba on County Road 11. For information, call (505) 269-1839.

A summer serenade

The Jardineros de Placitas presents “A Summer Serenade” on July 21 from 9:30-11:00 a.m. at the Placitas Presbyterian Church. A musical program will be presented especially for the seniors of our community and Bernalillo. A Jardinero member will play delightful piano music that will include a sing-along. A member of the senior community will charm us with his Spanish music on his accordion. An aspiring 14-year old who composes both classical and jazz will play “A Medley of Personal Selections” on the piano.

Please join us for a wonderful morning of music. There is no charge, as this is a gift to the community. All are welcome. For more information, call Joan Lucero at (505) 867-2011.

Strange, but true

—Bill Sones and Rich Sones, Ph.D.

Q. What was different about healthy 17-year-old San Diego schoolboy Randy Gardner when he awoke at 6 a.m. on December 28, 1963?

A. He didn’t go back to sleep again until the morning of January 8, 1964—that’s 11 days without sleep! These 264 hours remain the longest scientifically verified period without sleep, breaking the previous record of 260 hours. For the final three days, Stanford University’s William Dement stayed awake with Gardner, who experienced mood swings, memory and attention lapses, loss of coordination, slurred speech, and hallucinations. “Otherwise, he was just fine. His first sleep after the 11 days lasted just 14 hours,” says Graham Lawton in New Scientist magazine.

Gardner took no stimulants during his “wakeathon,” but did have people around to help him stay awake. Without this, sleep would have become nearly irrepressible within 48 hours. Sleep-deprived people slip in and out of subtle “microsleeps”—seconds of sleep that may go unnoticed, often with eyes open. Microsleeps aside, how long could Gardner have continued? Nobody knows, but it is known that sleep deprivation is eventually fatal. Rats kept awake die after two weeks, less time than it takes them to starve to death.

There are no records of a human intentionally kept awake to that point, but the hereditary disease “fatal familial insomnia” suggests that an ultimate limit does exist. “The disease eventually robs victims of the ability to sleep, bringing on death within three months.”

Q. What’s the weight of that fleecy cloud drifting across the sky?

A.That’s what meteorologist Margaret LeMone wondered as she set out to “weigh” a smallish cumulus cloud over the plains east of Boulder, Colorado, says John A. Adam in A Mathematical Nature Walk. It helped that in many regions west of the Appalachians, U.S. highways mark the land into squares a mile by a mile. This particular cloud had a ground shadow about 0.6 mile by 0.6 mile and was about as high as it was wide. This made for a nice even kilometer by a kilometer by a kilometer, or 1 cubic kilometer or a billion cubic meters. Typically, each cubic meter of cloud contains half a gram of liquid water, so this cloud totaled about 500,000,000 grams or 500 metric tons (1,100,000 pounds). By comparison, a Boeing 747-400 jetliner with a full load of passengers and fuel has a maximum takeoff weight of 400 metric tons (880,000 pounds). “So even a moderate-sized puffy cloud weighs more than a fully laden Jumbo! Of course, there would be a bit more room to move around in an aircraft the size of a cloud.”

Q. You might not think of the tongue as a multitasking organ, but think again. How many of these tasks can you identify?

A. The tongue’s 16 muscles allow it to bend into practically limitless shapes for chewing, swallowing, and carrying on a good conversation, says Jocelyn Rice of Discover magazine. The longest human tongue on record stretched 3.86 inches from lip to tip. The surface of the tongue is studded with hundreds of small bumps called papillae that contain the taste buds for transmitting sweet, sour, salty, or bitter flavors to the brain, aided by a quart of saliva pumped out each day. Supertasters seem endowed with an overabundance of papillae, while smokers apparently have flatter papillae and a reduced blood supply. This drool-worthy organ also helps in licking your wounds, based on Dutch researchers having identified two healing compounds in human saliva.

In a pinch, the tongue can even assist with vision and mobility, as engineers are refining tongue-enabled systems to help blind people see and paralyzed people operate a wheelchair.






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