Editorial:Mumm Grand Cordon Stellar Space Champagne.
Travel: Souvenirs.
Technology: Tesla Rocket Boost For Your Car.
Stationery: Ballograf.
Gadgets and Gear: EverRatchet.
Books and Writing: Overcoming writer's block.
Miscellaneous: Infento.
PD: Store.

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EDITORIAL: Mumm Grand Cordon Stellar Space Champagne

In PD: Cool Things issue 176 Pd wrote about Vostok Space Beer, the first beer designed to overcome the problems of enjoying a beer in space (GHOST_URL/prowling-dog-cool-things-issue-176/).

[Above: Vostok Space Beer]

Well, it looks like the people at 4Pines Brewery and Sabre Aeronautics are not the only ones to be working on the problem of enjoying a drink in space. Now Champagne house Mumm has announced a space-friendly Chanpagne, its Grand Cordon Stellar.


In Mumm's own words,

[The high tech bottle] uses the champagne's gas to expel the liquid into a ring-shaped frame, where it is concentrated into a droplet of bubbles. It can then be passed to someone and released into the air, where it floats until gathered up in a specially designed glass. “By rising to this new challenge, Mumm defies gravity and once again pushes the limits of innovation. This revolutionary bottle illustrates the Maison’s status as an icon of the avant-garde.” says Louis de Fautereau, Global Brand Director of Mumm.

It does not end there. Apparently zero gravity gives a new taste sensation.

In the unique conditions of zero gravity, Mumm Grand Cordon takes on new and unsuspected taste characteristics too. The sensations begin as soon as the wine leaves the bottle, appearing as an effervescent ball of foam. The novelty continues when the champagne enters the mouth, where the foam transforms itself into a liquid. "It's a very surprising feeling," explains Mumm's Cellar Master Didier Mariotti. "Because of zero gravity, the liquid instantly coats the entire inside of the mouth, magnifying the taste sensations. There's less fizziness and more roundness and generosity, enabling the wine to express itself fully." The result intensifies and concentrates Mumm Grand Cordon's signature style, unleashing the power of Pinot Noir in an explosion of ripe and juicy fruit aromas.


The glasses do not need a base as there is no gravity in space.

According to the company Mumm Grand Cordon Stellar should soon be served to participants in the zero gravity flights organized by Air Zero G.

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TRAVEL: Souvenirs

We all want to have memories of our travels. Things that will bring back the feel, taste and smell of a place. That is why photographs are so popular. People used to pack a few canisters of 35mm film and ration them to make sure that there would be enough for the whole trip. People down to their last roll of film had to think hard about taking any particular photograph. Of course these days it is easy to take all of the photographs that you like, as long as you have enough memory on your SD card.

[Photograph: Bilby]

Another souvenir may be a few postcards.

[Postcard: University of Maryland Digital Collections, National Trust Library Historic Postcard Collection]

Some people get caught up in the mood of a place and buy cheap plastic souvenirs that get tossed in a draw and forgotten, or a piece of local clothing that they later wonder why on earth they bought it because it is not suitable back home.

[Photograph: Ximeg]

Perhaps the best souvenir is a travel diary. This way you can record all those little things that made the trip special. Do not just record the fact that you visited a particular place. Write down the little anecdotes - the waiter who gave you a little gift or the local who smiled at you. Little things happen and it is these stories that make a place unique to you. For a good example see PD's post "Orient Express: an incident at the Vatican" (GHOST_URL/an-incicident-at-the-vatican/).

[Phpotograph: VSOE]

Another kind of souvenir is buying something that has nothing to do with place you are visiting but will remind you of it whenever you look at it. It could be a painting, a piece of glassware, a book or an antique.

[Image: Rembrandt etching]

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TECHNOLOGY: Tesla Rocket Boost For Your Car

It had to happen and it did. Rocket boosters for your car? Not quite - using real rocket boosters may singe the car behind you when the lights turn green. This is Elon Musks Tweet:


What Elon Musk has in mind are canisters of pressurised air to give a boost of acceleration. The canisters are refilled using an air pump that runs off the car's electric motors. You may not have flames coming out of the rear of the car but dramatic nevertheless. Elon plans to have this option on the new Roadster in 2020, which is not to far away.

As with the famous Elon Musk Not A Flamethrower, featured in PD: Cool Things issue 167 (GHOST_URL/prowling-dog-cool-things-issue-167/), Elon Musk has a record of delivering what he says. Not sure about the "Maybe they will allow a Tesla to fly" bit though, unless he means flying on the road.

[Photograph: Tesla - link below]![Screenshot-2018-6-12-Tesla-Roadster](/content

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You probably have not heard of Ballograf, a company that has been making ball point pens and mechanical pencils near Gothenburg since 1945. If you want a no-nonsense quality pen that will last you a lifetime, try Ballograf. The pens are filled with archive-proof ink.



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There are plenty of key ring multi tools available. All do similar jobs, and most include a 1/4" driver for screwdriver bits. What makes EverRactchet unique is that the creator, mechanical engineer Brian Filko, has incorporated a ratchet mechanism into the tool.


The ratchet mechanism allows you to work in tight spaces without constantly putting the tool on and taking it off.

Of course, it has all the usual other tools incorporated into it.


The EverRatchet is available in either Stainless Steel or Titanium.

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BOOKS AND WRITING: Overcoming writer's block

Creativity is not something that can be turned on and off like a tap. You cannot schedule a time in your diary for creativity - this is different to scheduling a session for writing when you know what you are going to write.

There is also not secret medicine that you can take to be creative. Creativity happens when the brain is free to wander. This means that it must be free of distractions. This includes electronic media.

If you have writer's block there is no point in sitting at your desk waiting for inspiration. Change your activity. Go for a walk without listening to your phone. Leave your ear buds at home. In fact, leave your phone at home. Sit on a park bench and do nothing. People watch.

The only things that you should have are a pen and pocket notebook to write down any ideas that come - otherwise you may forget them by the time you get home.

Make sure that you are rested; it is very hard for the mind to work properly when you are tired. Do not have an extra cup of coffee in the hope of making your mind work harder.

Do not even think about what you are writing about. Ideas will usually flow when you are rested and not distracted. That is why down time is not a waste of time; it is a useful tool.

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In the days before computer games children played with Meccano, the construction toy created by Frank Hornby in 1896.


Think of Infento as Meccano on steroids, allowing children to build vehicles that they can actually ride.

This construction set even has an electric motor. It allows children from toddlers to early teens to learn about construction.


It can teach children creativity, collaboration, communication, critical thinking and technical skills, not to mention having lots of fun. The creators even have a guide showing which vehicles are recommended for which age group. Because of the wide span of ages, this is a toy that will last many years.


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PD: Store

X90 Planner

The X90 Planner has been thorougly tested by PD and featured in PD: Cool Things 178: GHOST_URL/prowling-dog-cool-things-issue-178/


The planner is hard back but opens flat. It is clearly laid out and uses quality paper. It is undated, so you can start working on your goals immediately. There are 90 days in the planner, the ideal length of time to achieve goals.


From US $31.95 plus shipping. Local taxes may apply in your country.

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Important disclaimer: Remember that crowd funding sites are not stores. You may decide to back this project and provide funds, however there is no guarantee that any project will be delivered - the rate of failure is about 10%. PD is in no way accountable for the success or otherwise of any project and writes in this column purely for entertainment purposes, and will in no way be held liable for any failure or money lost by anyone. It is a case of "buyer beware". It is a sad reflection on the era we live in that PD must resort to this type of disclaimer.

Note: Photographs and illustrations are from the relevant websites and are the copyright of the respective owners.

© 2018 Prowling Dog