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Famous Wiener Dogs in History

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I'm getting jealous of all of the pictures Jason posts of his adorable dog, Bailey, so I thought I'd squeeze in a gratuitous picture of my own.

The little one on the left is Patton (he has one blue eye and one brown eye), the black one is Winston and the red one is Jackson. Yes, they are named after General George Patton, Winston Churchill and Andrew Jackson. Don't ask.

Jackson was our first. Winston came a couple of years later because we thought Jackson was lonely. We meant to stop at two, but then we found Patton with his wonky eyes and his Gene Simmons tongue and couldn't help ourselves. We're in good company, though "“ dachshunds have been the faithful companions of authors, artists, politicians and actors for centuries. I thought I'd share a few "celebrity" dachshund tales with you. If anything, this will make myself feel better about owning three of them.

Picasso and Lump

2picasso.jpgA dachshund who has gotten a fair amount of press in the last couple of years is Lump (pronounced "Loomp," it's German for rascal).

Our own Andréa, the author of the "Feel Art Again" posts, could tell you more about Picasso's works than I can, but I do know that Lump was featured in many of his pieces. He acquired Lump from photographer David Douglas Duncan in 1957 when Duncan brought Lump along on a trip to photograph Picasso. It was love at first sight. Lump didn't get along with Duncan's other dog and made it pretty clear that he preferred to become an artist's muse. Lump had his portrait painted for the first time that very day. Their relationship is chronicled in Duncan's book Picasso and Lump: A Dachshund's Odyssey. The friendship is pretty clear from the pictures in the book, which include Picasso holding Lump like an infant and letting the dog eat from his dinner plate.

Andy Warhol, Amos and Archie

Andy Warhol only got a dachshund puppy because his boyfriend wanted one, so they got Archie. Warhol ended up being the one infatuated with the breed, though. Warhol would bring the dog to interviews with him to "answer" questions he didn't care for. He also took Archie to galleries, on business trips, on photo shoots and to his studio.

3warhol-dog.jpgThings were going so swimmingly for the two of them that Andy decided a second dachsie was in order, which was when Amos came along. Archie stopped accompanying Andy everywhere so he could stay home and play with Amos. Even though they weren't seen out and about together as often, the breed's influence on Andy's work was still evident: he painted one of his famous colorful portraits of Maurice, an art collector's dachshund.

David Hockney, Stanley and Boodgie

5hockney.jpg One of Warhol's pop art contemporaries, David Hockney, also found inspiration from his dogs. Stanley and Boodgie were the featured attraction in about 45 oil paintings in his 1995 gallery show. Hockney is known for his dry humor, but when it comes to his dachshunds he is downright adoring "“ he actually refused to sell any of the paintings of them because he felt they were "too intimate." Stanley and Boodgie are also the subjects of David Hockney's Dog Days, a book of illustrations and photos released last year.

I particularly enjoyed these sketches because I see our dogs wedge themselves in weird positions and crevices like this all of the time. I thought it was just their individual quirks, but apparently it's a breed thing.

Waldi

6olympics.jpgI didn't mean to turn this into "Wiener Dogs in Art," but what can I say? They must be popular muses: a dachshund named Waldi just happened to be the first-ever mascot of the Olympics when they were held in Munich in 1972. The dachshund was chosen to represent the summer games because the breed originated in Germany and they has certain personality characteristics similar to those of athletes "“ namely, agility and tenacity. And, if they are anything like my dachshunds, stubbornness.

The stripes in Waldi's midsection were the colors of the games that summer. Unfortunately, the cute dachshund mascot isn't the most memorable thing about the 1972 Olympics "“ that was the year of the "Munich Massacre," when 11 Irsaeli competitors were killed by Palestinian terrorists.

William Randolph Hearst and Helen

William Randolph Hearst had many dachshunds, but none that he loved as much as his Helen. He even had a little ramp installed on a fountain at Hearst Castle so she could use it as her own personal swimming pool.

Hearst was so devastated when Helen died in 1942, he wrote an elegy for her that was published in Time magazine:

"A boy and his dog are no more inseparable companions than an old fellow and his dog. An old bozo is a nuisance to almost everybody — except his dog....She always slept on a big chair in my room and her solicitous gaze followed me to bed at night and was the first thing to greet me when I woke in the morning. Then when I arose she begged for the special distinction of being put in my bed. . . .

"Aldous Huxley says: 'Every dog thinks its master Napoleon, hence the popularity of dogs.' That is not the strict truth. Every dog adores its master notwithstanding the master's imperfections of which it is probably acutely aware. . . .

"So as your dog loves you, you come to love your dog. Not because it thinks you are Napoleon, not because YOU think you are Napoleon. Not because you WANT to be Napoleon. But because love creates love, devotion inspires devotion, unselfishness begets unselfishness and self-sacrifice. . . .

"Helen died in my bed and in my arms. . . . I will not need a monument to remember her. But I am placing over her little grave a stone with the inscription:

"Here lies dearest Helen —my devoted friend."

Kaiser Wilhelm II and Wadl, Hexl and Senta

The last emperor of Germany loved dachshunds so much he buried five of them in the park at Huis Doorn, his residence-in-exile after WWI. The most famous of them, though, are Wadl, Hexl and Senta. Senta accompanied the Kaiser during WWI, which earned him the honor of having a stone dedicated to him at the Huis Doorn park. Wadl and Hexl are famous for a more mischievous reason, though. When the Kaiser was paying a visit to Austria to visit Archduke Franz Ferdinand, they gobbled up one of his golden pheasants.

John Wayne and his dog

7wayne.jpgWhile I can't find any entertaining stories about John Wayne and his dog, I thought this picture was worth sharing:

Other celebrities and their dachshunds include:

"¢ Dorothy Parker and Robinson
"¢ Dita Von Teese and Greta and Eva
"¢ Napoleon Bonaparte and Grenouille and Faussete
"¢ Carole Lombard, Clark Gable and Commissioner
"¢ Mary Tyler Moore and Dash
"¢ Wayne Gretzky and Clyde

Do you have an ornery dachsie? If you're like me, you love to trade stories about them"¦ so let's hear it! Good stories about other breeds are welcome too (I suppose"¦).

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The Brain Chemistry Behind Your Caffeine Boost
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Whether it’s consumed as coffee, candy, or toothpaste, caffeine is the world’s most popular drug. If you’ve ever wondered how a shot of espresso can make your groggy head feel alert and ready for the day, TED-Ed has the answer.

Caffeine works by hijacking receptors in the brain. The stimulant is nearly the same size and shape as adenosine, an inhibitory neurotransmitter that slows down neural activity. Adenosine builds up as the day goes on, making us feel more tired as the day progresses. When caffeine enters your system, it falls into the receptors meant to catch adenosine, thus keeping you from feeling as sleepy as you would otherwise. The blocked adenosine receptors also leave room for the mood-boosting compound dopamine to settle into its receptors. Those increased dopamine levels lead to the boost in energy and mood you feel after finishing your morning coffee.

For a closer look at how this process works, check out the video below.

[h/t TED-Ed]

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5 Tips for Becoming A Morning Person
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You’ve probably heard the term circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm is an internal clock that influences your daily routine: when to eat, when to sleep, and when to wake up. Our biological clocks are, to some extent, controlled by genetics. This means that some people are natural morning people while others are night owls by design. However, researchers say the majority of us fall somewhere in the middle, which is good news if you want to train yourself to wake up earlier.

In addition to squeezing more hours out of the day, there are plenty of other good reasons to resist hitting the snooze button, including increased productivity. One survey found that more than half of Americans say they feel at their best between 5 a.m. and noon. These findings support research from biologist Christopher Randler, who determined that earlier risers are happier and more proactive about goals, too.

If you love the idea of waking up early to get more done, but you just can't seem to will yourself from out under the covers, here are five effective tips that might help you roll out of bed earlier.

1. EASE INTO THE HABIT.

If you’re a die-hard night owl, chances are you’re not going to switch to a morning lark overnight. Old habits are hard to break, but they’re less challenging if you approach them realistically.

“Wake up early in increments,” Kelsey Torgerson, a licensed clinical social worker at Compassionate Counseling in St. Louis suggests. “If you normally wake up at 9:00 a.m., set the alarm to 8:30 a.m. for a week, then 8:00 a.m., then 7:30 a.m.”

Waking up three hours earlier can feel like a complete lifestyle change, but taking it 30 minutes at a time will make it a lot easier to actually stick to the plan. Gradually, you’ll become a true morning person, just don’t try to force it to happen overnight.

2. EXERCISE IN THE MORNING.

Your body releases endorphins when you exercise, so jumping on the treadmill or taking a run around the block is a great way to start the day on a high note. Also, according to the National Sleep Foundation, exercising early in the morning can mean you get a better overall sleep at night:

“In fact, people who work out on a treadmill at 7:00 a.m. sleep longer, experience deeper sleep cycles, and spend 75 percent more time in the most reparative stages of slumber than those who exercise at later times that day.”

If you don’t have much time in the morning, an afternoon workout is your second best bet. The Sleep Foundation says aerobic afternoon workouts can help you fall asleep faster and wake up less often throughout the night. “This may be because exercise raises your body’s temperature for about four to five hours,” they report. After that, your body’s core temperature decreases, which encourages it to switch into sleep mode.

3. MAKE YOUR BEDROOM IDEAL FOR SLEEP.

Whether it’s a noisy street or a bright streetlight, your bedroom environment might be making it difficult for you to sleep throughout the night, which can make waking up early challenging, as you haven’t had enough rest. There are, however, a few changes you can make to optimize your room for a good night’s sleep.

“Keep your bedroom neat and tidy,” Dr. Nancy Irwin, a Los Angeles-based doctor of psychology on staff as an expert in sleep hygiene at Seasons Recovery Centers in Malibu, suggests. “Waking up to clutter and chaos only makes it more tempting to crawl back in bed.”

Depending on what needs to be improved, you might consider investing in some slumber-friendly items that can help you sleep through the night, including foam earplugs (make sure to use a vibrating alarm), black-out drapes, light-blocking window decals, and a cooling pillow

Another simple option? Ditch the obnoxious sound of a loud, buzzing alarm.

“One great way to adapt to rising earlier is to have an alarm that is a pleasing sound to you versus an annoying one,” Dr. Irwin says. “There are many choices now, whether on your smartphone or in a radio or a freestanding apparatus.”

4. TAKE THE TIME TO PROPERLY WIND DOWN.

Getting up early starts the night before, and there are a few things you should do before hitting the sack at night.

“Set an alarm to fall asleep,” Torgerson says. “Having a set bedtime helps you stay responsible to yourself, instead of letting yourself get caught up in a book or Netflix and avoid going to sleep.”

Torgerson adds that practicing yoga or meditation before bed can help relax your mind and body, too. This way, your mind isn’t bouncing from thought to thought in a flurry before you go to bed. If you find yourself feeling anxious before bed, it might help to write in a journal. This way, you can get these nagging thoughts out of your head and onto paper.

Focus on relaxing at night and stay away from not just exercise, but mentally stimulating activities, too. If watching the news gets your blood boiling, for example, you probably want to turn it off an hour or so before bedtime.

5. GET YOUR DAILY DOSE OF LIGHT.

Light has a immense effect on your circadian rhythm—whether it’s the blue light from your phone as you scroll through Instagram, or the bright sunlight of being outdoors on your lunch break. In a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, scientists compared the sleep quality of 27 subjects who worked in windowless environments with 22 subjects who were exposed to significantly more natural light during the day.

“Workers in windowless environments reported poorer scores than their counterparts on two SF-36 dimensions—role limitation due to physical problems and vitality—as well as poorer overall sleep quality," the study concluded. "Compared to the group without windows, workers with windows at the workplace had more light exposure during the workweek, a trend toward more physical activity, and longer sleep duration as measured by actigraphy.”

Thus, exposing yourself to bright light during the day may actually help you sleep better at night, which will go a long way toward helping you wake up refreshed in the morning.

Conversely, too much blue light can actually disturb your sleep schedule at night. This means you probably want to limit your screen time as your bedtime looms closer.

Finally, once you do get into the habit of waking up earlier, stick to that schedule on the weekends as much as possible. The urge to sleep in is strong, but as Torgerson says, “you won't want your body and brain to reacclimate to sleeping in and snoozing.”

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