Many Hats of Me: February 2013

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Home Remedies for the Common Cold and Flu

Cactus  growing just outside Tucson Convention Center

When You Feel Sick As A Dog

Since returning home from Tucson, I've come down with a severe cold accompanied with high fever and, of all things, hives. For the past 4 mornings, I wake up with sniffles, high fever, incredible thirst, and hives. When my son was 1 years old, he had a fever accompanied with hives. It's quite a rare occurrence for an adult to have hives along with a fever; and even after speaking to a nurse, I still don't know what I have, except that it's probably a virus. I don't like taking unnecessary drugs, so I'm limiting myself to Acetometophin to reduce my fever.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Tucson Gem Show 2013 - TGMS Show Year of Fluorite

The Tucson Gem and Mineral Show is the first and oldest gem show in Tucson and is run by the Tucson Gem and Mineral Society (TGMS) and is held every year on the 2nd weekend in February. The cover charge this year is $10. It is both a retail show and an exhibit that provides an opportunity for the public to purchase jewelry, gemstones, fossils, and minerals, and to view mineral exhibits made up of private collections from around the world.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Tucson Gem Show 2013 Day 2 – G & LW Show at the Holiday Inn Holidome

Today is the last day for the famous G & LW (Gem & Lapidary Wholesalers) show at the Holiday Inn Holidome (4550 Palo Verde Rd.). This wholesale-only show comprises of the Gem Mall that is housed in two soccer sized tents and the Holiday Inn Holidome ballroom. I only managed to see most of the vendors of Tent 1, three vendors in Tent 2, and none in the Holidome. Next year!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Tucson Gem Show 2013 - Fossils and Beads

I arrived in Tucson yesterday evening, having spent the entire day travelling. My flight was purchased using points, so I didn’t have a direct flight that would have shaved hours off my travel time. But free is good!

I had booked my rental car months ago at a good rate, but rebooked just before I left to get even a better rate. I used Budget Rental's Fast Break program for the first time. It allows you to skip the line and get your car within minutes of arriving at the airport. Since it was my first time using this program, I also got a free upgrade.

I forgot my toothbrush and sunglasses so after I dropped off my luggage in my room, I visited the hotel lobby store. Instead of personal hygiene supplies, there were scorpion lollipops in a variety of flavors.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

New (but OLD!) Rayner Gem Refractometer

In my last Gemology post, I mentioned that I had returned the GIA refractometer and was planning to buy a Gempro. However, an expert from mentioned that a circa 1950's British-made Rayner refractometer was selling on eBay for less than $200. I emailed the seller about the condition of the glass surfaces but he did not reply to any of my emails. When an eBay seller refuses to discuss an item, it usually is a warning sign and one should stay away. I thought about it for another day and decided to take the risk and purchase the refractometer. It came in the mail yesterday.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Home Economics Class - A Highschool Subject Deserving of an Overhaul

After a lengthy online discussion about bankruptcy with a fellow blogger +Jared Strauss, I was inspired to write the following blog about the shortcomings of the high-school subject, Home Economics.

I admit that I never took Home Economics Class in high school. Instead, I took Fine Arts, which, as it turns out, became the more practical subject for me, since my past career was Creative Director in a communications department.

Boiling Eggs and Darning Socks

So what does Home Economics teach? Some of my friends took this class, and this is what they learned:

1. Basic cooking, like how to boil and fry and egg
2. How to follow a pattern and sew a dress.
3. How to take stains out of clothes.
4. How create a dinner menu and cook it.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Photographing Gems with a Microscope

Sourcing a Microscope Photo-adaptor

Since purchasing my new (used) microscope in early January, it has taken over a month to source all the components to attach my digital SLR to the microscope. The main problem is the microscope's photo-port: it has no tube and the opening is a non-standard 27mm wide, which is just over an inch.

Trial and Error

I Googled "aluminum tube"and came up with a company, Online, that sells tubes of various shapes, size, and materials at specific cut lengths. I purchased a 1"OD (outside diameter) and .91" ID (inside diameter). 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Gia Refractometer from eBay - Review

Gemological Refractometer is the Essential Tool for Gemologists

Since December, I have been searching eBay for a used GIA refractometer. It is the essential tool of gemologists to identify stones by measuring a stone's refractive index. I finally managed to purchase one last week and it arrived two days ago. The first thing I noticed was that it was light; in fact, my Ipod weighs more. Under closer inspection, I noticed a few things:

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