Can you imagine having to reach outside to clear your car windshield when it rains or snows? That’s just what people had to do in the early days of the automobile. A young woman from Alabama named Mary Anderson noticed this on a visit to New York City. She promptly drew up plans for the first hand-operated windshield wiper and was granted a patent in 1903. By 1916, such wipers were standard equipment on all automobiles and street cars. Checking the condition of your wiper blades is one of the things everyone should do as winter weather approaches. Keeping your car in good shape helps make driving safer. Poor maintenance is thought to be a factor in many of the 10.8 million motor vehicle accidents across the nation each year. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at <www.census.gov>.
Sunday, October 28th. The focus this month is definitely on taking care of your teeth. For one thing, October is Dental Hygiene Month — stressing preventative oral health care, from using dental floss to proper brushing techniques. And earlier this month in San Francisco, some 50,000 dentists gathered for the 153rd annual session of the American Dental Association. They took continuing education courses and viewed leading-edge dental technology and products. Helping us care for our teeth are 175,000 dentists and 141,000 dental hygienists, working in more than 99,000 offices across the country. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at <www.census.gov>.
Saturday, October 27th. This is Spinach Lovers Month — perhaps the only vegetable made famous by a comic strip. The spinach eating sailor Popeye first appeared in January 1929 — and soon spinach was the third favorite children’s food — after turkey and ice cream. Several towns proclaim they are the “Spinach Capital of the World,” among them Crystal City, Texas, which has a statue of Popeye in front of its city hall and an annual Spinach Festival. Spinach is now a common ingredient in salads and has a new lease on life with the news that its lutein content can help prevent macular degeneration. Each year, the spinach crop in the U.S. is worth $204 million. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau, online at <www.census.gov>.