Wednesday, August 1, 2012

July 23, 2012 ~ The Big Event is coming to London

We should take care not to make the intellect our god;

it has, of course, powerful muscles,
but no personality.

- Albert Einstein
2012 July
See Explanation. Moving the cursor over the image will bring up an annotated version. Clicking on the image will bring up the highest resolution version available.
Dawn of the Dish
Image Credit & Copyright: Alex Cherney (Terrastro, TWAN)
Explanation: Wandering planets Venus and Jupiter were joined by an old crescent Moon near the eastern horizon on July 15. This serene southern skyview of the much anticipated predawn conjunction includes the lovely Pleiades star cluster and bright stars Aldebaran and Betelgeuse in the celestial lineup. For help identifying the stars and constellations, just slide your cursor over the image. Of course, the radio telescope in the foreground is the Parkes 64 meter dish of New South Wales, Australia. Known for its exploration of the distant Universe at radio wavelengths, the large, steerable antenna is also famous for its superior lunar television reception. On July 21, 1969 the dish received broadcasts from the Moon that allowed denizens of planet Earth to watch the Apollo 11 moonwalk.
2012 July
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download  the highest resolution version available.
Fifth Moon Discovered Orbiting Pluto
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, Mark Showalter (SETI Institute)
Explanation: A fifth moon has been discovered orbiting Pluto. The moon was discovered earlier this month in images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in preparation for the New Horizons mission's scheduled flyby of Pluto in 2015. Pictured above, the moon is currently seen as only a small blip that moves around the dwarf planet as the entire system slowly orbits the Sun. The moon, given a temporary designation of S/2012 (134340) 1 or just P5 (as labeled), is estimated to span about 15 kilometers and is likely composed mostly of water-ice. Pluto remains the only famous Solar System body never visited by a human-built probe and so its origins and detailed appearance remain mostly unknown.
Simulation: A Disk Galaxy Forms
Video Credit: Fabio Governato et al. (U. Washington), N-Body Shop, NASA Advanced Supercomputing
Explanation: How do galaxies like our Milky Way form? Since our universe moves too slowly to watch, faster-moving computer simulations are created to help find out. Green depicts (mostly) hydrogen gas in the above movie, while time is shown in billions of years since the Big Bang on the lower right. Pervasive dark matter is present but not shown. As the simulation begins, ambient gas falls into and accumulates in regions of relatively high gravity. Soon numerous proto-galaxies form, spin, and begin to merge. After about four billion years, a well-defined center materializes that dominates a region about 100,000 light-years across and starts looking like a modern disk galaxy. After a few billion more years, however, this early galaxy collides with another, all while streams of gas from other mergers rain down on this strange and fascinating cosmic dance. As the simulation reaches half the current age of the universe, a single larger disk develops. Even so, gas blobs -- some representing small satellite galaxies -- fall into and become absorbed by the rotating galaxy as the present epoch is reached and the movie ends. For our Milky Way Galaxy, however, big mergers may not be over -- recent evidence indicates that our large spiral disk Galaxy will collide and coalesce with the slightly larger Andromeda spiral disk galaxy in the next few billion years.
5 Things Everyone Should Know About the Higgs Boson
1. It’s way easier to think of it as a “God Particle.”
Sure, the Higgs Boson verifies a physical mechanism proposed in 1964 and in no way confirms the existence of a god or any kind of supreme being, but all that science can get really complicated and exhausting. Instead of thinking about any of that, make a facebook status letting all of your stupid atheist friends know who the king of science is now!
2. Pictures of the Higgs Boson Look Pretty Damn Cool
The Higgs Boson
It kind of looks like a black hole eating the sun and exploding at the same time. Or like an album cover for some kind of jazz-heavy metal electronic fusion band, which is probably the kind of music the Higgs Boson would be into anyways.
Whatever the case, that shit would definitely make an ill desktop background.
(The Higgs Boson, the elementary particle you don’t
want to fuck with.
3. The Large Hadron Collider that the Higgs Boson was discovered in is approximately 17 miles in circumference!
Or as the scientists at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research) put it, that’s about 179,520 hot dogs. (They use the metric system)
4. Skimming the non-technical section of the Wikipedia page does not make you an expert in elementary particle physics.
You saw some headline on reddit or the New York Times, or maybe you heard a snippet on NPR. We all want to make our friends look stupid in conversation while we’re prancing around Starbucks in our berets and pencil mustaches, but I find it a little hard to believe someone can browse the Internet for a few minutes and begin to discern the physical origin of the universe. I’m looking at you, liberal arts majors.
5. The particle observed by CERN was identified to be a Higgs Boson with a certainty of only 99.99998%.
This means that the next time you see someone who you know is genuinely interested in the field of theoretical physics, you can really tear down what should be very exciting news. Make sure they know that the .00002% means the discovery is still just a theory, like evolution . . . or gravity. Let them know that their hogwash “science” and “analytical thought process” means nothing to the likes of you.
British plant scientists win $10M grant from Gates Foundation
The money, awarded by the Gates Foundation, will be used to cultivate corn, wheat and rice that need little or no fertiliser. Plant scientists at the independent unit are trying to engineer cereal crops capable of taking nitrogen from the air – as peas and beans do – rather than needing chemical ammonia spread on fields.
The Cast of Star Wars Sings “Call Me Maybe”
James Covenant clipped lines from all six Star Wars movies so that the characters sing Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe.” I gotta tell you, I had no idea Jabba the Hutt had such a good singing voice.
Cube Tube ~ Chill without the Spill
How do you kill a circus?
Go for the juggler.
What A Pushy Date
Don’t you just hate that feeling ladies? I mean you’re just trying to get to know him and he keeps trying to push in for a kiss. Well, at least he’s handsome.
Amazing LEGO Colosseum
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70801" title="lego_colosseum" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="281" />
This masterfully crafted colosseum sculpture was built by Ryan McNaught, a certified LEGO builder who used over 200,000 bricks to make what is arguably “the most challenging LEGO model ever created”.
The piece is built with both the version from two thousand years ago and the modern version represented on either side, and it was so difficult to build that it gave Ryan a new respect for the ingenuity of Roman architecture.
Bravissimo Ryan! Link–via Gizmodo
An history of the yellow first-down-line visible in televised football games, and a discussion of the complex technology involved.

Miami-Dade County bought some hybrid vehicles for the use of local government employees.
Three hundred of them, of which none have ever been used.

A man in Ohio tossed money toward a panhandler in a wheelchair near an intersection. It landed on the ground. He was
arrested and fined $160 for littering.

"Morning-after" pills do not prevent fertilized eggs from implanting; they prevent eggs from becoming fertilized. Therefore they should not be part of an abortion debate.

orangutan was used as a sex slave in a Borneo brothel.

"Obamacare" succinctly summarized (with links to the details).

A remarkable fossil has been found that shows turtles in copulo ("the only example in the fossil record of vertebrates being preserved in the act of having sex"). A separate, but relevant article at Scientific American describes the "terrifying sex organs of male turtles." And those of echidnas are even more bizarre.
Schools in the state of Washington ban students from bringing sunscreen to school because it is deemed a type of "medication." Some students have incurred significant sunburns as a result. The teachers had sunscreen, but couldn't apply it to the students because of "liability issues." Total administrative nonsense
Reading Between The Lines
Face down ass up
In July 1761 an illegal slave ship foundered near Tromelin, a speck of land 200 miles east of Madagascar. After six months on the island, the surviving gentlemen and sailors assembled a makeshift boat and departed, promising to return for the 60 slaves left on the island. They never did.
The slaves kept a fire going for 15 years while they struggled to survive on an island of barely 0.3 square miles. They fashioned houses from coral and sand, built a communal oven, and subsisted on turtles and seabirds.
“We have found evidence of where they lived and what they ate,” archaeologist Max Guérout told the Independent in 2007. “We have found copper cooking utensils, repaired, over and over again, which must originally have come from the wreck of the ship.”
At one point 18 castaways left on a makeshift raft; it’s not known whether they reached land. In 1776 a French sailor was shipwrecked on the island, built a raft, and escaped to Mauritius with three men and three women. Finally a rescue ship arrived for the last seven castaways, including a grandmother, her daughter, and an 8-month-old grandchild who had been born on the island.
The governor in Ile de France declared them free, since they had been bought illegally. He adopted the family of three and named the boy Jacques Moise. His surname is a French form of Moses — a baby rescued from water.
A woman gives birth by a Caesarian and passes out. When she comes to her senses, the doctor approaches her bed and says:
"I'm sorry to tell you, Mrs. Smith, that your baby has some serious problems."
"What problems, doctor? I mean, when it arrives, I'll love it. It's my child and I'll love it regardless."
"Well, yes, of course,... but your child has no legs."
"Oh dear. Well, it's my child, and I'll love it regardless."
"And it hasn't got any arms either."
"Exactly what I said. Your child doesn't have a body, or a face. In fact, your child is only a very, very big ear."
The woman is in anguish, but she still tells the doctor to bring her her son.
"Sonny, dear, it's me your mother! Do you hear me!?"
"There is no need to scream," says the doctor "it's deaf."
Adjusting to marriage sometimes poses some unexpected problems. But when I came upon a friend of mine in a bar the night after his wedding, I had ask exactly what he was doing there instead of with his new bride.
"Well, you see, this morning when I got up," he said, "I was barely awake from a wonderful night of love-making. More out of habit than anything else, I put a fifty dollar bill on the dresser."
I told him not to worry about it, that his new wife probably wouldn't even think anything of it; that he could always say he left her some spending money.
"No no !" he half wailed/half said, "You don't understand. She was half asleep too and gave me $30 change."
Multnomah Falls, Oregon..
Copyright (c) 2008 Scott Wood

Multnomah Falls, at 620 feet, is the second highest year-round waterfall in the United States, the first being Yosemite Falls in California. Nearly two million visitors a year come to see Multnomah Falls, making it Oregon’s number one tourist place. The falls is fed by underground springs from Larch Mountain. Benson Bridge, built in 1914, crosses Multnomah Creek between the Upper and Lower Multnomah Falls. Multnomah Falls is one of many falls in the Columbia River Gorge which can be seen from the Historic Columbia River Highway.
Darth Vader Has a Conversation with His 12-Year Old Self
We’ve seen Jeremiah McDonald have a conversation with a younger version of himself. But what wasn’t clear is that his idea wasn’t original. It had already been done a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. When he was 12 years old, Anakin Skywalker made a video to talk to himself later in life. It’s kind of awkward.
How to Balance Flavors In Your Cooking

Bringing Your Cooking From "Good" to "Great"
In Thailand and some other Asian countries, balance is a key concept in preparing a dish or meal. There should ideally be a balance of flavors in each dish, and among the dishes on the table. Sweet, sour, salty, spicy, and bitter are the main flavors, but aromatic and creamy elements have their place as well. A truly great dish balances these tastes to achieve a flavor that sings on the tongue. Whether it's a bowl of chili or a gourmet French sauce, the very "best of the best" have a balance of flavors

Salty Whole books have been written about what we often think of as plain old salt - it has played a vital role, not only in the development of cookery, but in whole civilizations. It may seem obvious, but the right amount of salt really brings out the flavors in food. Add a little at a time and keep tasting, and experience the flavors coming alive.
Sour. There's nothing like a little acid to perk up a "blah" dish. Throw a little vinegar or lemon juice into the skillet, and give the whole sauce a zing. It is often best to add acidic notes near the end of cooking, because they mellow out with long exposure to heat - this is especially true of citrus juice.
Sweet. Obviously, sweet foods can be an issue for those on a low-carb diet. But sometimes just a touch of something sweet can make all the difference. Whether using some form of sugar or sugar substitutes, it often doesn't take much to balance the dish. Chinese recipes might have a teaspoon of sugar (that's four grams) in a whole dish serving four people. It is not uncommon for me to put only a drop or two of Sweetzfree into a dish and find that it transforms the whole thing, countering acid or harshness, rounding out corners. The food won't taste sweet, just better.

Aromatic. Every cuisine in the world has their favorite aromatic ingredients. These ingredients give a depth of flavor to almost any dish. Many cuisines have "trinities" of aromatics. The French use onions, celery, and carrots (mirepoix). For the Cajuns, it's onions, Bell peppers, and celery. The Caribbean sofrito has onions, garlic, and peppers at its base. Many Asian cultures include ginger along with other ingredients. Aromatics are usually sautéed in oil near the beginning of cooking the dish - flavoring the oil in this way flavors the whole dish, and it usually only takes a small amount.

Spicy/Hot. There is a reason that black pepper sits aside the salt on many tables around the world, as well as in the kitchens of master chefs. Something that "perks up" the taste buds makes the whole dish taste better. Peppers (both from peppercorns and chile peppers) are the main spices which produce this effect, but the dish needn't be spicy-hot to benefit from peppers. Except in purposefully spicy dishes, just a touch of heat in the background won't taste spicy, just more "alive".

Ingredients Which Are Blends. If you look at some of the condiments in your cupboard, you'll find that they are already combinations of flavors. Ketchup has vinegar, salt, sugar, and spices. Worchestershire sauce has molasses, vinegar, tamarind, and anchovies. Barbeque sauce has sugar and vinegar along with the spices. These condiments can add several flavors at once to your cooking.

More Of This Article
Same doctor
In a new book, University of San Diego professor Frank Partnoy argues that the key to success is waiting for the last possible moment to make a decision
One of the most fun pop-up books I've ever seen
Man Uses Obituary for Confession
Val Patterson of Salt Lake City, Utah, prepared his own obituary ahead of time. In it, he got a lot of things off his chest. As in, secrets he had kept for many years.
Now that I have gone to my reward, I have confessions and things I should now say. As it turns out, I AM the guy who stole the safe from the Motor View Drive Inn back in June, 1971. I could have left that unsaid, but I wanted to get it off my chest. Also, I really am NOT a PhD. What happened was that the day I went to pay off my college student loan at the U of U, the girl working there put my receipt into the wrong stack, and two weeks later, a PhD diploma came in the mail. I didn’t even graduate, I only had about 3 years of college credit. In fact, I never did even learn what the letters “PhD” even stood for. For all of the Electronic Engineers I have worked with, I’m sorry, but you have to admit my designs always worked very well, and were well engineered, and I always made you laugh at work. Now to that really mean Park Ranger; after all, it was me that rolled those rocks into your geyser and ruined it. I did notice a few years later that you did get Old Faithful working again. To Disneyland – you can now throw away that “Banned for Life” file you have on me, I’m not a problem anymore – and SeaWorld San Diego, too, if you read this.
If this sort of thing catches on, it may make the obituary column the most popular part of newspaper sites. Link -via Sun News
British Special Forces Used Exploding Rats Against The Nazis
This sounds like a plot element from the movie Inglorious Basterds, but it’s true- British Special Forces used dead rats, among other things rigged with explosives, against Nazi forces during World War II.
Here’s how those rat bombs were used:
But the most exotic device was the “explosive rat”. A hundred of the rodents were procured by an SOE officer posing as a student needing them for laboratory experiments. The rats were skinned, filled with plastic explosive, and sewn up. The idea was to place a rat among coal beside a boiler. When they were spotted, they would immediately be thrown on to the fire, causing a huge explosion.
That was the theory. As one of the SOE files records: “This device caused considerable trouble to the enemy, but not quite in the way that was intended.” The Germans intercepted the container of dead rats before they could be used for “operational purposes”. But all was not lost. According to an SOE report, their discovery had an “extraordinary moral effect”: the rodents were exhibited at all German military schools, prompting a hunt for “hundreds of rats the enemy believed were distributed on the continent”.
SOE concluded: “The trouble caused to them was a much greater success to us than if the rats had actually been used.” Link–via i09
The End of Cavities?
< img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70816" title="teeth" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="120" A team of scientists led by José Córdoba from Yale University and Erich Astudillo from the University of Chile have developed a chemical that can kill all the cavity-causing bacteria in a person’s mouth -in only 60 seconds! They call it Keep 32, because using it may let you keep all 32 of your teeth for a lifetime.
If Keep 32 is as successful in testing as it is in the lab, it’s likely that the chemical would be added to toothpaste, mouthwash, and other oral hygiene products, especially if researchers sell their patent to one of the major pharmaceutical companies. However, Astudillo isn’t limiting his product to the dental world. He also hopes to license the chemical to candy companies like Hershey’s or Cadbury. Keep 32 could be added to sticky sweets, meaning that consumers would no longer need to be concerned that a package of saltwater taffy or caramel would cause tooth decay. Parents will have to come up with a different excuse to prevent their children from eating copious amounts of Laffy Taffy.
After seven years of research, Keep 32 is ready for human trials, if the researchers can get the funding. Link
Bird’s Eye View of Olympic Venues
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70823" title="gilesprice" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="376" />
Photographer Giles Price hangs out of a helicopter to get aerial photos. See a gallery featuring the Olympic venues in London from the top down, plus some statistics about the photos and the Games. Link -via Everlasting Blort
I am fluent in 3 languages: English, sarcasm, and profanity.
New Profession: Sorority Rushing Coaches
If you want to succeed in life, then you’d better get into the right sorority. Make it your primary focus for the first few months of college, because that’s when you have to impress girls three years older than yourself. Their opinions of your body, intellect, personality and values matter. Make the best impression with the help of professionals who coach young ladies through the process of rushing a sorority:
Naming themselves the Rushbiddies, they opened shop in 2009 after hearing about the rush misfortunes of their daughters’ friends. About 50 mothers and their “chicks,” as the Biddies affectionately call them, attended one of their two-day workshops in April ($100 a couple), complete with mock rush party, wardrobe hints and paperwork prep.
And there is a mound of it. The smart rushee, the Biddies advise, will have a résumé stressing community service, leadership, academics and teamwork, letters of recommendation from alumnae of each chapter, preferably on the campus in question, and reference letters.
With the help of Ms. Foster and Ms. Grant, who wears a pink feather boa during workshops, Mrs. King asked alumnae of about 10 chapters, several from U.Va., to write her daughter’s recommendations. To guide their plaudits, she sent them packets with a professional photograph, transcript and résumé. To thank them, she dropped off a bottle of rosé in their mailboxes.
Link -via Marginal Revolution | Photo (unrelated) via ttarasiuk
He’s a Dancing Machine!
A NAO robot recreates Judson Laippley’s legendary video The Evolution of Dance. Not bad …for a robot. -via The Daily What
S’More Ice Cream Sandwiches
<img src=""; alt="" title="smore" width="487" height="597" class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-70774" />
Get in my belly! All of the major components in Bright-Eyed Baker’s amazing concoction are homemade: the marshmallows, the graham crackers and even the ice cream. She dipped the graham crackers in chocolate and mixed marshmallows and graham cracker crumbs into the ice cream. You can find her recipe at the link.
Nothing says excitement like a dog, some spray paint and a little fire.
The Canadian police are looking for the guy who shot this video and uploaded it to YouTube.
. Read all about it.
Golden Retriever and Newborn Fawn Spar

The Chameleon Band-Aid
The Chameleon Bandage takes the concept of band-aid protection a notch higher by becoming literally invisible once it’s applied to the wounded area. The designers have not clarified how it works as yet. Imagine how cool will it be to sport a bandage that blends with your skin tone, especially for those awkward places on your chin or cheek. The bandage is an entry in the 2012 Taiwan International Student Design Competition.

Belly Flop Compilation

Sword Dancing
Do you pee in the shower?
Pee in the shower
Ukranian Bartender
I just hope you’re not in a hurry for your drinks.
Laws of Household Physics
Ever notice that the laws of household physics are every bit as real as every other law in the universe?
Here are a few examples:
1. A child’s eagerness to assist in any project varies in inverse proportion to the ability to actually do the work involved.
2. Leftovers always expand to fill all available containers plus one.
3. A newly washed window gathers dirt at double the speed of an unwashed window.
4. The availability of a ballpoint pen is inversely proportional to how badly it is needed.
5. The same clutter that will fill a one-car garage will fill a two-car garage.
6. Three children plus two cookies equals a fight.
7. The potential for disaster is in direct proportion to the number of TV remote controls divided by the number of viewers.
8. The number of doors left open varies inversely with the outdoor temperature.
9. The capacity of any hot water heater is equal to one and one-half sibling showers.
10. What goes up must come down, except for bubble gum, kites and slightly used Rice Krispies.
11. Place two children in a room full of toys and they will both want to play with the same toy.
Potty Training a Sloth
They only go poo once a week!

Just a dog
Mantis Shrimp
A team of divers from the BBC's documentary series Deadly 60 delve deep for the mantis shrimp to capture these amazing ambush predators on film in the wild. Just like its insect namesake, the mantis shrimp uses its claws to impale its prey with lethal accuracy.
Things to eat and drink
Wild Snow Leopard Mother and Cubs
< img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70770" title="snowleopardcub" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="105" />There are only a few thousand snow leopards left in the wild, and they are extremely reclusive, living in the mountains and hunting only at dawn and dusk. Now, for the first time time, we have video footage of a snow leopard mother and cubs in their natural habitat. A team of researchers from the Snow Leopard Trust and Panthera found the den by attaching GPS units to snow leopards four years ago. Imagine that job! The leopards’ movements clued them in that it was time to give birth, high in the Tost Mountains of Mongolia.
“As we stood outside the den we could hear the cub and smell the cats but not see anything inside the den,” said Panthera scientist Orjan Johansson. He and colleagues acted quickly, taping a camera to their antenna pole and extending it over the ledge blocking the den entrance. The footage captured shows a female leopard looking up at the camera, keeping a protective paw over her cub.
At the second den—a narrow crack in a cliff wall—the scientists discovered that the mother was away hunting, leaving her two male cubs unattended, seen below. “This was an unprecedented opportunity,” said Rutherford. “We wanted to be as careful as possible and only take the most pressing data.” The team quickly weighed, measured, photographed and collected hair samples from the cubs, which allowed genetic testing that confirmed sex and other information. More pictures of the cubs are available at Panthera’s photo gallery.
See two short videos at Surprising Science. Link

Caption this photo

Thanks Ed ~ all the good ones were already taken *eg*
Lost Among the Stars
June 19th was the new moon, so I decided to test out my new 16-35mm lens by heading out to the Dalles, OR to shoot the stars. I made the 2 hour trip out to the old “Emerson House” and arrived at midnight. I got out of my car and it was deathly silent outside. Looking at the old house way out in the field in the utter blackness made me think twice about walking out there. I am by no means superstitious, but when you arrive at a so called “haunted house” at midnight by yourself, your nerves start to get to you. After about twenty minutes of staring at the house, I finally built up enough courage to crawl under the fence and walk out into the field to photograph it. I set up, (and by this point I am really freaking out!) and fired off 4 shots. Then I start hearing noises in the complete silence of the night, but I shrug them off thinking that I am just paranoid. Then something tips over in the house, it was an unmistakable noise. (really, really freaking out by now!!!!! eek!) My mind starts making up all sorts of explanations. Then I hear an awful blood curdling screech, and 2 very large birds came stampeding out screeching and hollering strait at me. I freak out, run– trip, run -dive, freak out that I almost broke my new 16-35, scramble under the fence leap into my car, and speed off as fast as I can. I do not think I will be back to the Emerson house, unless it is with a very large parade of people. This is one of the 4 shots that I got before I was chased out by some pterodactyl screeching bird thing. (I never did see what type of bird, looked too big to be an ordinary owl) This image was made by using a flash light to paint light on onto the old building. Enjoy!
Booty Call Etiquette
An Australian TV commercial for the famous men under-garments Big Boy Briefs
Twerkin’… on a strangers car.
Not your granddaddy’s tampons!
nobrow a mean o' acid
Angry sea - The Perfect storm in reality
A collection of clips demonstrating the power of the sea, furious winds and gigantic waves that are not for the faint-hearted.
I never deliberately sat down and ‘created’ a character in my life. I begin to write incidents out of real life. One of the persons I write about begins to talk this way and one another, and pretty soon I find that these creatures of the imagination have developed into characters, and have for me a distinct personality. These are not ‘made,’ they just grow naturally out of the subject. That was the way Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn and other characters came to exist. I couldn’t to save my life deliberately sit down and plan out a character according to diagram. In fact, every book I ever wrote just wrote itself. I am really too lazy to sit down and plan and fret to ‘create’ a ‘character.’ If anybody wants any character ‘creating,’ he will have to go somewhere else for it. I’m not in the market for that. It’s too much like industry.
– “Mark Twain Tells the Secrets of Novelists,” New York American, May 26, 1907
Prada Menswear Fall 2012 Ad Campaign
This handbill -- which can be seen in the British Museum -- dates back to the 1650s, and was produced by the first coffee shop in London, in St. Michael's Alley, Cornhill.
Honda Helix Impressive Concept Page - [futurism, hi-res pic]
France’s radium craze a century ago still haunts Paris
What Kind of Spender Are You? (Infographic)
An omnipotent god can create a being that performs an act known only to itself.
An omniscient god cannot do this.
It would appear, then, that no god can be both omnipotent and omniscient.
(From Richard R. La Croix.)
Little laughs
The angry wife meets her husband at the door. There is lipstick on his cheek and alcohol on his breath.
"I assume," she snarls, "that there is a very good reason for you to come waltzing in at six o'clock in the morning?"
"There is." he replies, "Breakfast."
Bad Blood (2013) Dana Stabenow
Healthy Living from

Want to live a full, long, healthy, happy life? Of course you do! So take the advice of those who are 90+ (as well as nutrition scientists) and stock up on these superfoods for longevity.

15 physical signs to watch out for

Bob says to his buddy Bill, "My Dr. says if I don't give up sex, I'll be dead in a week."
"What!...Why is that?" Bill asks.
Bob replies, "I've been screwing his wife."
Bored? Why not send msg to a random number...
Things You Do Not Want to Hear During Surgery
The right vein's connected to the...left aorta...the left brain's connected to the...stomach bone...
A screwdriver?... This can't be right.
Accept this sacrifice, O Great Lord of Darkness.
After everything we did, I can't believe this guy is still alive.
Ah well, you win some, you lose some...
Alright everyone, let's dig in.
An instruction manual would have been nice.
Anyone see where I left that scalpel?
At least he doesn't have brain damage... Wait... Now he does.
Better save that. We'll need it for the autopsy.
Check it out! Isn't this 100 times cooler than using juggling balls?
Could you stop that thing from beating
Death is probable... Now it's certain.
Doesn't this remind you of that scene from Family Guy?
Don't worry. I think it is sharp enough.
Everybody stand back! I lost my contact lens!
FIRE! FIRE! Everyone get out!
Hand me that...uh...that uh.....thingie.
Has anyone here used one of these before?
Hey! Give that back! There's no law against drinking in the operating room...
I don't understand!?!? This didn't happen in the video.
I hate it when they're missing stuff in here.
I see dead people.
I wish I hadn't forgotten my glasses.
I'm gonna need one of you guys to start whispering in her ear. Tell her to "Move away from the light".
I'm starting to think that this whole thing is just a waste of time
If you can't feel your legs, it's because you don't have any.
Isn't this the guy that slept with your wife?
It's alright... Go ahead... He's asleep.
Look on the bright side, at least his wife won't have to worry about getting pregnant...
Now which side did we say? Left or right?
That's cool! now can you make his leg twitch?!
This is the part where I always get stuck.
Wait a minute, if this is his spleen, then what's that?
Well folks, this will be an experiment for all of us.
What do mean he wasn't in for a sex change...!
You weren't supposed to wake up... We're not done yet.

Hero of the day – 52-yr-old bus driver catches falling girl

Keyla McCree crawled out of her bedroom window and was dancing atop an air-conditioning unit when she lost her footing and plunged towards the concrete below. She was saved by a neighbour who had looked up when he heard the girl, who suffers from autism, singing above. Steve St Bernard, 52, a bus driver and fellow resident at Coney Island Houses building in Brooklyn caught the girl in his outstretched arms…”I just prayed that I’d catch her,” Mr St Bernard told the New York Daily News. “I was right underneath her…” Witnesses told police that the child had pushed aside the accordion closure that held a newly installed air conditioning unit in her apartment. She crawled out through the empty space around 2pm and astonished onlookers as she sang and danced a routine on the ledge.
Mr St Bernard heard the commotion and went to helpThe girl walked away unscathed but her rescuer was treated for a torn tendon in his left bicep.
RTFA for the details. The important part was that an ordinary guy, a bus driver, heard the commotion – saw what the danger was – and stationed himself to help the little girl if the worst happened.
It did. And he saved her.
Thanks Ed ~
"A man does not have to be an angel in order to be a saint." - Albert Schweitzer

"He that falls in love with himself will have no rivals." - Benjamin Franklin

"I never did give anybody hell. I just told the truth, and they thought it was hell." - Harry S. Truman

Gotham City Crisis
Batman is back saving Gotham City. Help the caped crusader rescue hostages from the villainous Bane. Get thru deadly traps using special armor and defeat Bane and his henchmen.

From Kane to Nolan: 70 Years of Bat Evolution

Take a look at the development of one of the greatest comic book heroes in history. Batman has been thru quite a bit over the last 70 years, especially when Joel Schumacher got a hold of him.
Hungry Whale Shark Steals Food
A sneaky whale shark in the waters off Indonesia capitalized on the chance for an easy meal by simply sucking fish straight out of a fishing net.
Foaled in 1773, this thoroughbred racehorse bore the unlikely name of Potoooooooo.
How was it pronounced?

My bologna has a first name…

Project Gotham Racing 2: Ferrari 360 Spider at Edinburgh
In 1957, says NPR’s Robert Krulwich, five Air Force officers volunteered (and one cameraman was voluntold) to stand directly below a mid-air detonation of a 2-kiloton nuclear warhead.
They just wanted to see what would happen, apparently.
The stunt was carried out 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas to, “to demonstrate the relative safety of a low-grade nuclear exchange in the atmosphere.”
Krulwich asks,Who are these guys? And why is the narrator joyously shouting, “It happened! The mounds are vibrating. It is tremendous! Directly above our heads! Aaah!”
Readers apparently wanted to know, too, and Krulwich looked into the identities of these men. According to his investigation, I did find a list of the people who were in the film.
  • Col. Sidney Bruce
  • Lt. Col. Frank P. Ball
  • Maj. Norman “Bodie” Bodinger
  • Maj. John Hughes
  • Don Lutrel
  • George Yoshitake (the cameraman, not seen)
He says that of the six men who stood nonchalantly at ground zero, two may still be alive, and the others lived on for three decades or more.
More from
The National Museum of Nuclear Science & Historylist of the people who were in the film.
“Great good nature, without prudence, is a great misfortune.” — Benjamin Franklin
A globe-trotting man from St. Paul
Made a trip to Japan in the faul.
One thing he found out,
As he rambled about,
Was that Japanese ladies St. Taul.
A censor, whose name was Magee,
Suppressed the whole dictionaree;
When the public said, “No!”
He replied, “It must go!
It has alcohol in it, you see!”
There was a young man from the city,
Who met what he thought was a kitty;
He gave it a pat
And said, “Nice little cat!”
And they buried his clothes out of pity.
Carolyn Wells’ Book of American Limericks, 1925

Boy Scouts continue their ban on gay members, gay parents

The Boy Scouts of America has reaffirmed its longtime policy of barring openly gay boys from membership and gay or lesbian adults from serving as leadersThe exclusion policyreflects the beliefs and perspectivesof the organization, the Boy Scouts said in a news release from its headquarters in Irving, Texas.
You Know You're Too Stressed If... --*

1. You can achieve a "Runner's High" by sitting up.
2. The Sun is too loud.
3. Trees begin to chase you.
4. You wonder if brewing is really a necessary step for the consumption of coffee.
5. You can hear mimes.
6. You believe that if you think hard enough, you can fly.
7. You and Reality file for divorce.
8. You ask the drive-thru attendant if you can get your order to go.
9. Antacid tablets become your sole source of nutrition.
10. Losing your mind was okay, but when the voices in your head quieted, it was like losing your best friend.
(From Aha! Jokes)

Getting back together with an old boyfriend is pathetic. It's like having a garage sale and buying your own stuff back.

I wouldn't want to fly Virgin. Who'd want to fly an airline that doesn't go all the way?

My girlfriend likes to role-play. For the past five years, she's been playing my ex-girlfriend.

My friend was working at an amusement park when a couple stopped him. "Excuse me," said the woman, pointing to a pond. "Do you know what that water is made out of?"
Confused, my friend replied, "Two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen."
"See?" she said to her boyfriend. "I told you it wasn't real."
What do you get when you cross a blonde and a lawyer?
Hey! There's some things even a blonde won't do.
English: This is your Captain speaking, we have leveled off and are cruising at flight level three five zero, feel free to move about the cabin, also the First Officer has turned off the no smoking sign, the flight attendants will be serving cocktails and refreshments momentarily, so just sit back and enjoy the rest of the flight, we'll be arriving atour destination in 20 minutes, and I expect no delays. Enjoy the rest of your flight.

Ebonics: Ebonia Airlines Dis be yo' main man, we be chillin at tray-five -o, if you be flexin get up off yo ass and shake that thang, my homey be killin the man's opression if you wanna smoke chronic, just hang loose blood, them bitches be cruizin on up with some forty-ounce 8-ball, so stop trippin and sit your ass back down, we be in the hood in no time afterall, i be bumpin switches all da' way. Peace out!
Jinx the Wonder Dog
In this set of outtakes from the British TV show Extraordinary Dogs, an Australian shepherd named Jinx shows how he stands out from the crowd. That’s okay, I also have such a dog, a border collie who is plenty clever but brain damaged in the area that makes a dog want to please the leader of the pack. I know better than to enter her in any competition with other dogs! -via Arbroath
The Meaning of the Olympic Rings
With the games less than a week away, you see the Olympic rings everywhere! The symbol was an invention of Baron de Coubertin, who spurred the revival of the ancient Greek games as the modern Olympics in the late 19th century.
After the 1912 Stockholm Games—the first Games featuring athletes from all five inhabited parts of the world—a design of five interlocked rings, drawn and colored by hand, appeared at the top of a letter Coubertin sent to a colleague. Coubertin used his ring design as the emblem of the IOC’s 20th anniversary celebration in 1914. A year later, it became the official Olympic symbol.
The rings were to be used on flags and signage at the 1916 Games, but those games were cancelled because of the ongoing World War. The rings made a belated debut at the 1920 Games in Antwerp, Belgium.
Read more about the rings, including how they were confused for an ancient symbol, what the colors mean, and the rules for their use at mental_floss. Link
UCLA researchers have developed a new transparent solar cell that is an advance toward giving windows in homes and other buildings the ability to generate electricity while still allowing people to see outside. Their study appears in the journal ACS Nano.
The UCLA team describes a new kind of polymer solar cell (PSC) that
produces energy by absorbing mainly infrared light, not visible light, making the cells nearly 70% transparent to the human eye. They made the device from a photoactive plastic that converts infrared light into an electrical current.
"These results open the potential for visibly transparent polymer solar cells as add-on components of portable electronics, smart windows and building-integrated photovoltaics and in other applications..."
Very cool. It's developments like this - not more drilling - that can most effectively and permanently decrease dependence on foreign oil.
More at the
UCLA Newsroom and the Reddit discussion.

Put Your Phone Down - Music Video [HD]

Stylized Game of Thrones maps make Westeros and Essos look like pleasant places to vacation
We've seen lots of maps attempting to capture the worlds of George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire, but Kitkat Pecson's playful maps aren't trying to define the geography. Instead, they offer a slightly cartoonish view of the continents of Westeros and Essos. More »
How many TV evangelists does it take to change a light bulb?
One, but for the message of light to continue, send in your donation today.
Phantom time hypothesis
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The Phantom Time Hypothesis is a conspiracy theory developed by Heribert Illig (born 1947 in Vohenstrauß, Germany) in 1991. It proposes that there has been a systematic effort to make it appear that periods of history, specifically that of Europe during the Early Middle Ages (AD 614–911) exist, when they do not. Illig believed that this was achieved through the alteration, misrepresentation and forgery of documentary and physical evidence.

A Venzone mummy

For hundreds of years, a mystery surrounded the cathedral of Venzone, a small city in the province of Udine, Italy. Instead of decomposing normally, bodies buried in the tombs beneath the cathedral were perfectly preserved and still recognizable decades later, a fact which led the townspeople to periodically retrieve and commune with their dead loved ones. In modern times, scientists finally traced the source of this wonder to Hypha tombicina, a microscopic, parasitic fungus that rapidly dehydrates the bodies before decomposition can even begin.
That's the explanation at Wondercabinet, repeated at several other sites in my brief search. Personally I find it hard to understand how a fungus can dehydrate a corpse; I prefer this explanation at Virtual Tourist:
They were already found in 1647 during works in the cathedral. Venzone lies atop limestone bedrock. Groundwater in such regions is usually alkaline, an environment hostile to putrefaction. During floods, alkaline waters likely seeped through dirt floors in tombs 1 to 10, preserving the cadavers. Vaults 11 to 17 had sealed stone floors. Moreover, floodwaters in tombs 1 to 10 drained quickly through the porous limestone. Coffin wood from those vaults possessed just 7 percent water. In such aridity, water-soaked humans would have dried rapidly into mummies.
Venzone is not at high altitude, but desiccation as a preservative would accord nicely with the cloud mummies of the Andes and some that I seem to remember from Artic locales.

What's most intersting to me is not the mummification per se, but the respect accorded to the mummies by local villagers. Some of the photos seem to be from a museum, so part of this may be tourist-income-related, but the respect predates that.

Incidentally, for those interested, Virtual Tourist got its information from a web page entitled "The Mystery of Holy Incorruption" which offers modern interpretations of the "mysterious preservation of saints' bodies."
An "a-salt" weapon
It's real. Here's the Indiegogo link. Via Reddit.

"Home pages are the pet rock of the 90s. They all have them, they all think they're very cute. But in a few years they're going to look back and be pretty embarrassed." -- Kim Alm

"He who hesitates is not only lost, but miles from the next exit." -- Unknown
"We have it. The smoking gun. The evidence. The potential weapon of mass destruction we have been looking for as our pretext of invading Iraq. There's just one problem - it's in North Korea."- Jon Stewart

Colin Mochrie Loves His Star Wars Toys
Colin Mochrie is a comedian, Whose Line Is It Anyway alumnus, and an avid Star Wars toy enthusiast, at least according to this video which shows him re-enacting scenes from Star Wars with a bunch of toys.
Watch this video and you’ll see that a grown man can become a silly little kid again at the drop of a hat when he gets his hands on his favorite toys.–via Topless Robot
We've featured giant sand artwork by Jim Denevan before on Neatorama, but the artist is back. This time, Jim and his team traveled all the way to Lake Baikal, Siberia, in order to create the world's largest work of art.
Denevan, a sort of Andy Goldsworthy of the American West, and a team of plucky helpers proceeded to mark 9 square miles of ice with giant circles based on the Fibonacci sequence. The result, captured in the photographs above, is in a way less impressive than the process itself: Crew members had to brave sub-zero temperatures and hurricane-force winds to realize Denevan’s vision. Some of the gusts were so strong, they actually blew away the art work.
Suzanne Labarre of Co.Design has the photos and story: Link
Animated Short – D.A.D. Digital Amusement Device
Here’s an adorable animated short about D.A.D., a digital amusement device who has a lot in common with human fathers, aside from the telescoping arms and antenna on top of his head.
I really liked this cutie pie of a short, and I think animator Mark Osberg should consider making it into an ongoing web series! –via Drawn
A Super Super Mario Tattoo
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-71259" title="star-tattoo" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="375" />
Stars, landscape, mushrooms, bombs and more all tightly compacted into a perfectly-sized artwork. This might just be the best Mario tattoo I’ve ever seen. Link Via Geeks Are Sexy
Lightning strikes in a storm bigger than worlds. By Phil Plait.
What does space smell like? A: Seared steak, hot metal, welding fumes. And the centre of the galaxy smells of rum.
Whole brain teaching? Oh god, it’s another Brain Gym. Help us.
Your geography classes were right! Witness the formation of an oxbow lake observed via Google Earth. Very cool!
How fossil faeces are preserved: an explainer from Slate
A use for 3D printing: assault weapons and handcuff keys
How We Changed Penguins Just by Watching
Neanderthals ate plants, medicated with herbs, didn’t floss very well
Puzzling tombstones, quoted in Grave Humor, Alonzo C. Hall, 1961:
Yorkshire, England:
This tombstone is a milestone. Why so?
Because beneath lies Miles. He’s Miles below.
A little man was he, a dwarf in size,
Yet now stretched out, at least Miles long he lies.
This grave, though small, contains a space so wide.
There’s Miles in breadth and length and room beside.
Sheffield, England:
John Knott
Here lies a man that was Knott born,
His father was Knott before him,
He lived Knott and did Knott die,
Yet underneath this stone doth lie.
Ann Mann
Here lies Ann Mann,
Who lived an old maid
But died an old Mann
Dec. 8, 1767
The young Charles Lamb, visiting a churchyard with this sister, asked, “Mary, where are all the naughty people buried?”

How Gadgets Really Work
The secret to electronic gadgets, household appliances, and everyday machinery is just as you always suspected it. Max X find out the secret in this latest video of Ant Carpendale’s continuing series. Previously: Max X in CCTV.

The Funky Physics of Turning an Animal Transparent
<img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-71294" title="riken" src=""; alt="" width="400" height="301" />
Biology labs use a new chemical called Scale to turn specimens transparent, so they can look into them. The result makes a mouse embryo (pictured) look like a Gummi bear.
Discovered last year by researchers at Japan’s Riken Brain Science Institute, Scale is made from compounds commonly found in the biology lab, like urea and the detergent Triton X. Scale’s low cost means it can be used much more widely than previously developed sample-clearing agents, and it allows scientists to see deeper into tissue than ever before. The discovery enabled the Riken team to produce some of the most detailed maps of brain neurons ever published.
An article at DISCOVER magazine looks at the physics of light and explains how transparent molecules are different from opaque molecules. Which leaves me to wonder how scientists can see what they are looking for if it all turns transparent -and could making a specimen transparent change it so much that what you find is rendered meaningless? Link -via Not Exactly Rocket Science (Image credit: Riken)
I just read about a medical study which said that having frequent sex decreases your chances of getting a cold. The more sex you have, the less chance you'll have a cold. Something to do with boosting your red blood cells.
This is exactly the kind of thing I love to read. The government should be subsidizing this kind of research.
So I printed the article out. I can't wait until the next time my wife sniffles or sneezes. I'll be able to say, "Honey, I've got just the thing for that."

The Irish have solved their own fuel problems.
They imported 50 Million tons of sand from the Arabs and they're going to drill for their own oil. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A young boy with diarrhea approaches his mom and asks for some Viagra.
Mom says, "Viagra? Why in the world do you want that?"
The boy replies, "Isn't that what you give Dad when his shit won't get hard?"

Neither age and experience nor marriage has convinced the wife to respect my judgment when it comes to partying.
On Saturday we drove way the heck up to a town called Deer Tick, or something or other, to attend a birthday barbecue. When we got close to our destination we made a stop to pick up a little something to bring to the party.
Never show up empty-handed is cardinal rule number one. I, of course, wanted to get a case of beer, slap a bow on it and voila. Especially since the honoree was a guy, you don't need much more.
But my sweetie was not convinced by this strategy. She insisted we pick up a bottle of some trendy liquor in a designer bottle. Despite my better judgment I acquiesced.
As we were walking out of the store I suggested to her that she give the host a call to see if he needed anything at the last minute, like an extra bag of ice or charcoal or something. Once again she argued against it. Why would someone invite a bunch of people to their house and then not stock food, drinks and ice?
Fast forward 15 minutes as we pull up to the house. We go inside to discover that not only were the host and his wife not there, but they had not stocked food, beer or ice.
So as we sat chatting with a couple of strangers and drinking room temperature tap water I turned to my wife and said, "You owe me!"
"I know," she replied. "Tomorrow I'll buy you all the cold beer you want."
"Don't promise something you can't deliver," I told her.
"A new study found that bacon and freshly baked bread are Americans' favorite smells. Yeah, this morning instead of putting on cologne, I just rubbed my neck with a B.L.T." -Jimmy Fallon

"NASA discovered that Pluto has five moons. We have just one moon. We're moon-ogamous here on planet earth." -Jimmy Kimmel

"The inside of my car was so hot today that I was steering with my knees even when I wasn't texting." -Jay Leno

I was on my way out of the house to meet with a cantankerous client, and I was dreading it. The look on my face must have given me away because my five-year-old daughter asked what was wrong.
"I'm going to meet a mean woman who always yells at Daddy," I told her.
"Oh," she said. "Say hi to Mom."

After the fall in Garden of Eden, Adam was walking with his sons Cain and Abel.
As they passed by the ruins of the Garden of Eden, one of the boys asked, "Father, what's that?"
Adam replied, "Boys, that's where your mother ate us out of house and home."

QUOTE: "Destiny is no matter of chance. It is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved."

HINT: (1860-1925), leading American politician from the 1890s until his death.

ANSWER: William Jennings Bryan.
With the Olympics about two weeks away, consider this a final you-can’t-unsee-it reminder that the 2012 London Olympics logo looks like Lisa Simpson performing oral sex.
A Japanese Version Of Russian Roulette
Traditional Russian Roulette has one major element which tends to prevent repeat play- someone usually takes a bullet in the head. This Japanese adaptation of the game won’t kill you, it’ll only sting a little when the thumbtack sticks in your head. That’s right, simply attach a thumbtack to the front of a Nerf dart and you’ve got one hell of a way to put your eye out! –via Tastefully Offensive
QUOTE: "The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows."

HINT: (1917-1986), American journalist for the Chicago Daily News and later the Chicago Sun-Times.

ANSWER: Sydney J. Harris.
The Evolution of PC Games
How many of these games did you play as a kid? Your nostalgic trip through time from Reverse Enginears will be accompanied by catchy, bouncy electronic music. -via The Daily What Geek
Damaged Street Signs Linked to Prostitutes
<img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-71032" title="kiwisign" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="200" />Officials in Auckland, New Zealand have encountered over 40 street signs that have been bent or broken in one neighborhood over the past 18 months. Thousands of dollars have been spent to replace them. Who is to blame? Ladies of the night, plying their trades in the street.
“Prostitutes use these street sign poles as dancing poles,” said Donna Lee, an elected member of the city council’s Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board. “The poles are part of their soliciting equipment and they often snap them. “Some of the prostitutes are big, strong people.”
Now, doesn’t that paint a picture! Link -via Arbroath (Image credit: Flickr user Sheep”R”Us)
Watch Scientists Free a Whale Shark Caught in a Net
Go Team Humanity! Whale sharks, which are filter feeders, sometimes get caught in lift nets in Indonesia’s Cendrawasih Bay. These scientists in scuba gear found one and pulled the net open so it could escape.
Madam President
The year is 2024 and the United States has just elected the first woman as President of the United States ..
A few days after the election, the president-elect calls her father in Little Rock and asks, "So, Pa, I assume you and mom will becoming to my inauguration?
"I don't think so. It's a very long drive. Your Ma isn't as young as she used to be, we have the dog to contend with and my arthritis is acting up in my knee."
"Don't worry about it, Pa, I'll send Air Force One or another support aircraft to pick you up and take you home, and a limousine will pick you up at your door," she said.
"I don't know. Everybody will be so fancy. What would your Ma wear?"
"Oh, Pa," she replied, "I'll make sure she has a wonderful gown custom-made by one of the best designers in New York. It'll be here when she arrives. I'll also have a custom made suit delivered for you!"
"Honey," Pa complained, "You know we can't eat those rich foods you and your friends like to eat. Your Ma and I both have digestion problems"
The President-elect responded, "Don't worry, Pa. The entire affair is going to be handled by the best caterer in D.C. and I'll ensure that your meals are salt-free and easy digestible. Pa, I really want you and Ma to come. I will be devastated if you aren't here."
So her parents reluctantly agreed and on January 20, 2024, they arrived to see their daughter sworn in as President of the United States .
The parents of the new President are seated in the front row. The President's Pa notices a Senator sitting next to him and leans over and whispers, "You see that woman up there with her hand on the Bible becoming the first female President of the United States ?"
The Senator whispered in reply, "Yes I do."
Pa says proudly, "Her brother played football at the University of ARKANSAS.
Thanks Phlax (a clean joke from you???? ~ Looking around: did HELL freeze over?)
Getting vanity license plates, like going to the dentist more than once every five years, is typically something only the super wealthy do. Join society's crunchy, buttery-wet upper crust by getting one of these sayings on your car's plates:
• I LUV 10-S
• I H8 10-S
• B MY M8
The creator of the popular speaker series spent Friday at the Smithsonian talking about the next step in his prolific design career:
On the move yet again, Wurman is working on a new project called WWW, which he describes as the conference of the 21st century. TED now falls squarely in the 20th century, according to him. Subtracting both set presentations and time constraints, WWW will create “intellectual jazz” between two “of the most extraordinary people” Wurman knows. For good measure, musical directors Herbie Hancock and Yo-Yo Ma will add improvised contributions. The whole project is driven by the experimental whims of its creator; “When I’m tired of listening to them, I pull them off stage.”
The first talk is set for September 18-20, but he says he has no clue who the participants will be yet. Once he settles on guests, Wurman will help build an app for each conference allowing viewers to learn as much as they possibly can about each speaker. If the speaker is Frank Gehry, “They’ll see Frank Gehry talking about 30 buildings he never got to build,” explains Wurman, promising interviews, baby photos and even a look at the personal notes and work of each subject.
Branded as the future of conferences, WWW actually draws inspiration from 19th century salons with Wurman playing the role of Gertrude Stein. As TED moves further into the realm of lectures and ideas that “make a difference,” Wurman seems more concerned with the very nature of an idea as a social product.
And, of course, he’s concerned with staying curious. As soon as something fails to hold his interest, he’s on to the next project.
It’s Wurman’s salon, after all, and we’re just stopping by.
The Long and Winding History of the Thames
Float down England's longest river, from its origin in the Cotswolds to its ramble through London, a journey through centuries of "liquid history.
Steve Wozniak’s Version Of Essential Stuff
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-71013" title="wozniak" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="281" />
Here’s what Steve Wozniak, one of the uber-gods of computer technology, carries with him in his travel backpack as an essential array of gadgets.
It may make you feel a bit better about your own tech obsession, and will definitely send a cold chill down the spine of the techless.
So much information at your fingertips, but keeping them all charged seems like a daunting task!
Hit the link below if you want to read the full Wozniakian list of essential gadgets. Link

Performance: FilPop Music Festival

'Extreme action' dancers abseil down City Hall for London 2012 festivalView larger picture
'Extreme action' dancers abseil down City Hall in one of seven guerilla performances at London landmarks by choreographer Elizabeth Streb for the London 2012 festival
Abseiling (from German: abseilen meaning "to rope down") is the controlled descent down a rock face using a rope; climbers use this technique when a cliff or slope is too steep and/or dangerous to descend without protection. Rope Access Technicians also use this as a method to access difficult to reach areas at height for various industrial applications like maintenance, inspection, welding, etc
2012 July
See Explanation.  Clicking on the picture will download  the highest resolution version available.
Moon Meets Jupiter
Image Credit & Copyright: Cristian Fattinnanzi
Explanation: Skygazers around planet Earth enjoyed the close encounter of planets and Moon in July 15's predawn skies. And while many saw bright Jupiter next to the slender, waning crescent, Europeans also had the opportunity to watch the ruling gas giant pass behind the lunar disk, occulted by the Moon as it slid through the night. Clouds threaten in this telescopic view from Montecassiano, Italy, but the frame still captures Jupiter after it emerged from the occultation along with all four of its large Galilean moons. The sunlit crescent is overexposed with the Moon's night side faintly illuminated by Earthshine. Lined up left to right beyond the dark lunar limb are Callisto, Ganymede, Jupiter, Io, and Europa. In fact, Callisto, Ganymede, and Io are larger than Earth's Moon, while Europa is only slightly smaller.
Here is an interesting putt-putt game: If only there were some tits....(Phlax's comment, not mine)
Film Map
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-71189" title="Dorothy_0033_a Film Map" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="355" />
From Dorothy Collective, it’s the followup to their Song Map project: a map featuring places gleaned from your favorite movies.
A street map made up of over 900 film titles including cinema classics such as Lost Highway, On the Waterfront, Jurassic Park, Reservoir Dogs, Carlito’s Way, Nightmare on Elm Street, Valley of the Dolls and Chinatown.
Yes, it’s for sale. Link -via Blame It On The Voices
Rare Photographs of 12 Extinct Birds
We are used to seeing extinct species as drawings or fossils. However, there are plenty of species, including quite a few birds, that have gone the way of the dodo (literally) in the 180 years since the invention of photography. Seeing these birds as they really were makes you think about how extinction goes on today right under our noses. Link

This Is Your Mind, This Is Your Mind on Cat Nip
Catnip might seem like it’s all fun and games, but just wait until you are itching for your next big score cats and kittens. Just imagine what you might do with a head full of nip. Via I Can Has Cheezburger

Drinks Based on Your Favorite Games
Katamari Damacy Dashing Prince. Sounds delicious, as do many of the other drinks invented by The Drunken Moogle, most of which are inspired by video games. They even have a few drinks inspired by websites. Link
The Little-Known History of How the Modern Olympics Got Their Start
As London gets set to host the XXXth Olympiad, acclaimed sportswriter Frank Deford connects the modern Games to their surprising roots—in rural England
After Olympic officials banned the swimsuit that caused records to fall at the 2008 games, scientists are back with a new outfit that might break even more

That Big Event in London

<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-71191" title="londonevent" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="323" />
There’s something big happening in London starting next weekend, but the international committee that produces it does not like for businesses to use the name without paying for it, or even for everyday people to display the name or logo without proper renumeration. And they certainly don’t want the name used in any critical way. But you should be safe carrying these tote bags around the events in London to voice your opinion on the whole thing. Link -via b3ta
Pictograms for the 1964 Tokyo Olympic, designed by Katsumi Masaru (image: Virtual Olympic Games Museum)
Of all the instances in which graphic communication is necessary to transcend language barriers, the Olympic Games are, if not the most important, probably the most visible. We take the little icons of swimmers and sprinters as a given aspect of Olympic design, but the pictograms were a mid-20th Century invention—first employed, in fact, the last time London hosted the games, in 1948 (some pictographic gestures were made at the 1936 Berlin games, though their mark on international memory has been permitted to fade because of their association with Third Reich ideology).
The 1948 London pictograms were not a system of communication so much as a series of illustrations depicting each of the competitive sports, as well as the arts competition, which existed from 1912 to 1952 and included architecture, literature, music, painting and sculpture. In 1964, the Tokyo games took pictogram design to the next level by creating a complete system of typography, colors and symbols that would be applied across Olympic communications platforms.

Cowboys Vs. Spacemen: How The Toy Chest Was Won
The lone frontiersman, the rebellious explorer: These archetypal characters appear as frequently in the far reaches of outer-space as in the American West, from 'Star Wars' to 'Stagecoach,' on Planet Vulcan or the Oregon Trail. Today, toys, comic books, and even movie posters representing these figures are equally familiar.

But which holds more power for kids and adults alike? Are spacemen our true heroes, or would we rather have a cowboy riding to our rescue, to protect us from tobacco-spitting bad guys and slimy tentacled aliens?
Graffiti From Pompeii
The Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum is a behemoth publication spanning 17 volumes in about 70 parts that record about 180,000 Latin inscriptions from Roman times, ranging from official scripts to lowly graffiti hastily etched on the walls of toilets and brothels. Graffiti from Pompeii has culled some of the juiciest morsels, showing us that, indeed, the art of graffiti is a lost one:
V.5 (just outside the Vesuvius gate); 6641: Defecator, may everything turn out okay so that you can leave this place
I.2.20 (Bar/Brothel of Innulus and Papilio); 3932: Weep, you girls. My penis has given you up. Now it penetrates men’s behinds. Goodbye, wondrous femininity!
VIII.2 (in the basilica); 1820: Chie, I hope your hemorrhoids rub together so much that they hurt worse than when they every have before!
Link- via Metafilter. Previously on Neatorama: 10 Insulting Words You Should Know
tall and wide 1
Which of these triangles has the greater area?
How Much Would It Cost to Become Batman?
<img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-71182" title="bale" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="149" />How much money do you think Bruce Wayne (if he were real) would have to shell out for all the stuff that makes him Batman? Centives, an economics blog run by students at Lehigh University, crunched the numbers.
After stealing and ending up in jail, Bruce Wayne is then solicited by the League of Shadows. They know that he’s a billionaire and so they probably charged Bruce Wayne to train him in the way of the ninja (after all, serving the cause of true justice by doing things like destroying Gotham City isn’t exactly something you make money from – you have to find sources of revenue somewhere.) An elite personal martial arts instructor costs $60 an hour. As Batman you’ll want to train for, say, four hours a day, six days a week. Assuming that it takes about a year of training the bill comes out to $74,880.
Then there’s the Batcave, the gadget, the Batmobile, and Alfred. Surprisingly, the total came out to be less than you might think. Bonus: Thomas Wayne, Bruce Wayne, Batman, and Tony Stark all show up in the comments. Link -via TIME Newsfeed
Dana Peak and Mount Dana. But of course.
8. Killisnoo: A village south of Angoon. Corrupted from the Tlingit word kootsnahoo, meaning “bear’s rectum.” A close second for Number 8 was Anaktuvuk Pass, which means either “caribou shit” or “where the caribou shit.”
Taigataiga means “bear shit” in some obscure Athabaskan dialect.
Animated Short – Bhavri
This cute little animated short is called Bhavri, and it was lovingly created by animation student Sonia Tiwari.
It’s an aesthetically pleasing and colorful tale of life and death, and I love the combination of flash 2d and 3d animation. –via Cartoon Brew
Furry Fuhrers: 8 animals that look like Hitler
Side Effects by Steve Martin
Zombie Survival Dash in St. Louis

Space Exploration: An Infographic


OMG SPACE: Our exploration of the Solar System illustrated (with an extra-special treat)
Most people would be surprised to discover the extent that the world’s space-faring nations have explored the various bodies of our Solar System. In the more than half century that we’ve been sending probes and people into the cosmos, we have observed almost every major (the planets) and minor member (like Ceres, Eris and Pluto) that share our sun.
Margot Trudell, a designer based in Toronto, assembled every mission from every country into a fabulous collection of infographic maps in her OMG SPACE project. Landings, fly-bys and return trips are all labeled clearly and chronologically. It’s instantly understandable and accessible.
And, as if that wasn’t enough, she gave us an extra treat. This may be cooler than the posters themselves, actually. The OMG SPACE interactive webpage assembles the Solar System as a single scrolling page … to scale! Just see how long you have to scroll to get to Pluto.
Cool stuff. Go check it out, you won’t be sorry. You can purchase prints from this project here, and help support some fine science art.
Trivia Tidbit:The blue whale is the world’s largest animal. It is so large that its tongue alone weights about 3 tons (or about 2,700 kilograms). For comparison’s sake, the largest land animal, the African bush elephant — the whole thing, not just the tongue — weighs about six tons. via

Man with ‘world’s biggest penis’ stopped at SFO security

(Courtesy Jonah Falcon)
A New York man known for his unusually large penis was patted down by airport security at San Francisco International last week after they questioned him about the bulge in his pants, he said.
Jonah Falcon, 41, who has been featured in several documentaries about the world’s biggest penises, was returning from a trip in San Francisco on July 9 when he was stopped at security by TSA agents who spotted something out of the ordinary hanging to the left in his pants, he said.
“They wanted to know if I had something in my pockets, and when I said no, they asked if I had some sort of growth,” he said.
When he replied that it was just his penis, they “checked the area around it” but didn’t frisk him too severely, he said. They also wiped his hands to check for explosive powder.
Falcon said the delay was mostly amusing to him and only delayed him for about 5 minutes. He said it was the first time his penis had caused a security concern.
“I”ve gone through the (airport scanner) before, and I wasn’t worried,” he said. “What was the worst that was going to happen — I was going to have to whip it out for them? I’m used to that. Sometimes when people ask me about it, if I’m feeling up to it, I’ll just show them.”
Falcon’s penis has been reported as 9.5 inches when flaccid and 13.5 inches when erect, according to Rolling Stone. He has been featured in documentaries on HBO and overseas and has appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. He works as a video game journalist and as an actor with small roles in movies and television shows, according to his Internet Movie Database profile.
Falcon tweeted about the airport delay and the Huffington Post was the first to report on the incident.
A spokesman for the TSA at SFO was not immediately available for comment. Falcon said the agents were “professional” about the security check.
“It was probably harder on them than it was on me,” Falcon said.
“The legitimate powers of government extend to such acts only as are injurious to others. It does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no god. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.”
The Anthropocene is a recent and informal geologic chronological term that serves to mark the evidence and extent of human activities that have had a significant global impact on the Earth's ecosystem

Welcome to the Anthropocene is a short film about the state of the planet. It's a 3-minute journey through the last 250 years of our history. The film charts the growth of humanity into a global force on an equivalent scale to major geological processes
Wait until the 15-second mark to see something remarkable happen.
Designed by Welsh designer Ross Lovegrove and manufactured by Artemide, Solar Tree is an urban lighting system. This futuristic design uses panels and LED lighting units to provide environmentally friendly illumination powered by solar energy.
The plant-like structure is made of twenty steel pipes, which resemble plant stems and grass. Six of the pipes support solar panels, four support large lights, and ten grass-like stalks are topped with LED lights. All of the steel pipes are connected to 38 solar cells that are in turn connected to a battery system and to an electronic device hidden in the base.
The V Motion Project
The V Motion Project makes music and a light show with your body via Kinect. All it needs is some big mouse ears on the DJ’s avatar. It’s all explained at the project site. Link -via The Daily What Geek
Seeing a white raven is not something that happens every day even in areas where ravens are common. It is a very remarkable thing actually.

Stanford researchers complete 1st computer model of an organism

QUOTE: "In attempts to improve your character, know what is in your power and what is beyond it."

HINT: (1859-1907), English poet and ascetic.

ANSWER: Francis Thompson.
The first labor strike in the United States occurred in 1791, when Philadelphia carpenters campaigned for 10-hour workdays and overtime pay. Despite their attempts, they were unsuccessful, and the shorter workday did not become a reality for many American workers until the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 enforced eight-hour workdays.

Freight haulers began organizing back in 1901 when teams of horses still transported goods in wagons. The drivers were referred to as "teamsters," which is how that union got its name.

Ronald Reagan was the only U.S. president who had previously been president of a labor union. He served as head of the Screen Actors' Guild for eight years.

"We Shall Overcome" was adapted from a gospel song written in 1900 by Charles Tindley. Union members first sang it during a 1945 strike in Charleston, South Carolina, and it quickly became the unofficial anthem of the labor movement.

Even though patrons at the now-defunct Machus Red Fox restaurant in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, would regularly request "to sit in the booth that Jimmy Hoffa last sat in," he never made it inside for lunch that fateful day he visited. The labor leader disappeared from the parking lot on July 30, 1975, while awaiting his lunch companion.

American labor unions are almost as old as the nation itself. As early as 1648, the seeds of unionization were planted when coopers (barrel makers) and shoemakers in Boston banded together and formed guilds.
Always Connected (infographic)
Why we wear pants…
The surprisingly deep history of trouser technology
Trivia Tidbits:
People tend to eat less when food is served on a blue plate.
A third of all pet owners admit to having more photos of their pet than of their spouse.
Mercury boils at 674.11°F.
Don’t worry—a dollar bill is exactly six inches long.
Thomas Edison had 5,000 pet birds.
Think Fast
Touching a piece in chess without intending to move it is called what?
(Think Fast Answer: J'adoube) J'adoube, French for "I adjust," is the established phrase used by chess players to signal that they want to adjust a piece without breaching the touch-move rule.
That's about it from me today - but I just had to share one more thing - this last set of pics, which came across my FB feed just as the New Moon perfected earlier today. Of course, this was a Water New Moon - but even I couldn't go as far as elephants - could I? Well, not until I really looked at the picture and today's supporting act came flying out at me. Unusual (Uranus) Action (Mars) Big (Jupiter) and well, Pluto being Pluto. This photo practically screams Cancer New Moon with backdrop of Mars/Uranus/Pluto T-square - as I said in the earlier piece, this was an unusual Cancer New Moon and ready for LAUNCH - and that last photo of the giant face plant absolutely cracks me up. Continue enjoying the New Moon Essence, Sparklers - happy to check out for the night seeing such happiness in the world :-)

A Cat Has Been Mayor of an Alaskan Town for the Past 15 Years
<img src=""; alt="" title="cat" width="500" height="333" class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70987" />
For fifteen years–almost his entire life–Stubbs the cat has had a lock on the mayoralty of Talkeetna, Alaska:
Fifteen years ago, the citizens of Talkeetna (pop. 800) didn’t like the looks of their candidates for mayor. Around that same time resident Lauri Stec, manager of Nagley’s General Store, saw a box of kittens and decided to adopt one. She named him Stubbs because he didn’t have a tail and soon the whole town was in love with him.
So smitten were they with this kitten, in fact, that they wrote him in for mayor instead of deciding on one of the two lesser candidates. Mayor Stubbs has held his position ever since.
According to local citizens, he’s an effective leader:
Many citizens are genuinely happy to allow a kitteh to rule the roost. “He doesn’t raise our taxes—we have no sales tax. He doesn’t interfere with business. He’s honest,” said Stec, who converted her store into a part-time mayor’s office when Stubbs claimed victory. Not even the dogs seem to take issue with their new boss, even though there are reportedly more canines in Talkeetna than there are people. “I’ve never seen a dog mess with him,” a local business owner said.
Link -via The Agitator | Photo: Nagley’s General Store

The Coca-Cola jingle "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing" was reworked into a proper song and released in 1971. But it wasn't until the release of the accompanying TV commercial, featuring a crowd of young people singing the tune on a hilltop, that the jingle got any real airplay. Two versions of the song ended up hitting the Top 20.

The voices who sing radio station IDs belong to the Johnny Mann Singers. The vocal group records jingles for stations across the country from a studio in Dallas, Texas.

The deep voice that says, "Ho, ho, ho," in the Green Giant jingle belongs to singer Elmer "Leon" Dresslar Jr. The baritone first recorded those three syllables in 1959 and continued to receive checks for his effort up until his death in 2005.

In order for a sound to be trademarked, it must be inherently distinctive and unique and must also indicate to the consumer the source of the product. NBC's three-tone station-ID jingle was trademarked in 1950, the first sound to be so patented.

For the Meow Mix commercial jingle, Ralston Purina's ad agency used some film footage of a mewing cat, which they proceeded to loop backward, forward, and backward again in order to stretch it out to 30 seconds.

Barry Manilow wrote commercial jingles to pay the bills before his recording career took off. Some of his best-known compositions include "I am stuck on Band-Aid, 'cause Band-Aid's stuck on me" and "Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there."

Pringles Commercial
Once you taste the flavor, then you get the fever, then the CDC quarantines you for two weeks to minimize possible infection. Or, if you live in the world of TV advertising, you get the fever for the flavor of a Pringles!
Random Facts:
Cucumbers are scientifically known as Cucumis sativus and belong to the same botanical family as melons (including watermelon and cantaloupe) and squashes (including summer squash, winter squash, zucchini and pumpkin).

Fresh extracts from cucumbers have recently been show to have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. While research in this area must still be considered preliminary--since it's only been conducted on animals in a lab setting--the findings are clear and consistent.
There was once a wife so jealous that when her husband came home one night and she couldn’t find hairs on his jackets she yelled at him, “Great, so now you’re cheating on me with a bald woman!”
The next night, when she didn’t smell any perfume, she yelled again by saying, “She’s not only bald, but she’s too cheap to buy any perfume!”
An old snake goes to see his Doctor. "Doc, I need something for my eyes... can't see well these days". The Doc fixes him up with a pair of glasses and tells him to return in 2 weeks.
The snake comes back in 2 weeks and tells the doctor he's very depressed.
Doc says, "What's the problem... didn't the glasses help you?"
"The glasses are fine doc, I just discovered I've been living with a water hose the past 2 years!"

I Got Two Orders
The salesman reported back to his boss after several weeks on the road and said, "All I got was two orders."
"What were they? Anything good?"
"Nope," the salesman replied. "They were 'Get out!' and 'Stay out!"

Q and A Quickies

Q: What does a jellyfish have on its tummy?
A: A jelly button.

Q: Why was the ancient Egyptian confused?
A: Because his daddy was also his mummy.
Im gonna crumb

The business of recycling dead humans into medical implants is a little-known yet lucrative trade.
Warning: Might not be suitable for everyone.
Accurate pie chart
The art of living is more like wrestling than dancing. ~ Marcus Aurelius

Seven of the eight Ivy League schools were founded before the American Revolution (Cornell being the exception), but the use of the term "Ivy League" to group the colleges only dates back to 1933. The seven schools are Brown, Columbia, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Yale, and the University of Pennsylvania.

According to the most recent statistics, a student has a better chance of getting into Cornell than any other Ivy League school. One in five applicants is accepted there, versus one in ten for Columbia, Harvard and Princeton.

Most Ivy League schools require that undergraduates either exhibit an ability to swim or take a beginner's course in swimming.

Most historians believe that the Ivy League got its name from the spreading plants that cover many of the oldest college buildings in the American northeast. Harvard is the oldest Ivy League member and the oldest college in the United States, founded in 1636.

No Ivy League school offers athletic scholarships, which is the key reason why those universities' sports teams typically cannot compete with those from colleges that do.

The "Seven Sisters" was a septet of women's colleges considered the female equivalent to the Ivy League. Vassar became a co-ed school, and Radcliffe merged with Harvard in 1999, so the five remaining Sisters are Barnard, Bryn Mawr, Mount Holyoke, Smith, and Wellesley.

I answered a 911 call at our emergency dispatch center from a woman who said her water broke.
"Stay calm," I advised. "Now, how far apart are your contractions?"
"No contractions," she said breathlessly. "But my basement is flooding fast."
The Myriad Monikers of Gotham’s Villains

Pop Chart Lab produced a huge chart that classifies the villains of Gotham City -and there have been a lot of them over the past 70 years! The picture here is just a small portion of the chart, which is for sale as a limited edition signed and numbered art print. You can zoom in and read the whole thing at the site. Link -via Laughing Squid.
Random Facts:

Scientists announced the discovery of a new moon around Pluto on July 11 this year, bringing the dwarf planet's number of known moons to five.

P5, the new moon discovered around Pluto, is nothing like our own moon, a giant orb massive enough to be rounded into a sphere by its own gravity. Researchers think P5 is irregularly shaped, with a diameter between 6 and 15 miles.

A man being mugged by two thugs put up a tremendous fight!
Finally, the thugs subdued him and took his wallet.
Upon finding only two dollars in the wallet, the surprised thug said, "Why did you put up such a fight?"
To which the man promptly replied, "I was afraid that you would find the $200 hidden in my shoe!"
Q and A Quickies --*

Q: Have you heard the one about the skunk?
A: Never mind, it really stinks.

Q: Have you heard the one about the germ?
A: Never mind, it'll spread.

Q: Why did the computer go to the doctor?
A: Because it had a virus!

Q: What has 4 wheels and flies?
A: A garbage truck!

Olympic Structure Which Can Be Played Like A Musical Instrument
<img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-71278" title="olympicstructure" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="281" />
This awesomely abstract piece of structural art is called the Coca-Cola Beatbox, and it can be played like a musical instrument by visitors who come into contact with its crystalline walls.
Here’s how it works:
The Coca-Cola Beatbox, as its called, was designed by Asif Khan and Pernilla Ohrstedt and is made up of over 200 “interlocked translucent air cushions, each the size of a billboard.” Those air cushions contain different sounds—which include athletes’ heartbeats, shoes squeaking and arrows hitting a target—and will be triggered by people walking in and out of the Beatbox through gestures and movement.
Advertising gimmick or not, this is a pretty cool idea that’s guaranteed to add a bit of color to the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Link–via Gizmodo
Peacock Spiders Get Down and Get Funky
Jurgen Otto, also known as peacockspiderman, showed us awesome footage of the Peacock spider mating dance last year. This video is just as amazing.
Courtship of a spider that has become known as “Darlington’s peacock spider” but has yet to be scientifically named. I have found it during a trip to the Western Australian Stirling Range National Park in September 2011.
Watch them shake that thing with all they’ve got to impress the lades. Boom-chick-a-wowow! -via Buzzfeed
From an article in The Guardian, not really "news" per se, but some startling numbers:
A global super-rich elite has exploited gaps in cross-border tax rules to hide an extraordinary £13 trillion ($21tn) of wealth offshore... for many developing countries the cumulative value of the capital that has flowed out of their economies since the 1970s would be more than enough to pay off their debts to the rest of the world...
...almost £500bn has left Russia since the early 1990s when its economy was opened up. Saudi Arabia has seen £197bn flood out since the mid-1970s, and Nigeria £196bn...
The sheer size of the cash pile sitting out of reach of tax authorities is so great that it suggests standard measures of inequality radically underestimate the true gap between rich and poor. According to Henry's calculations, £6.3tn of assets is owned by only 92,000 people, or 0.001% of the world's population...
"These estimates reveal a staggering failure: inequality is much, much worse than official statistics show, but politicians are still relying on trickle-down to transfer wealth to poorer people...."
Washington has become our Versailles. We are ruled, entertained, and informed by courtiers -- and the media has evolved into a class of courtiers. The Democrats, like the Republicans, are mostly courtiers. Our pundits and experts, at least those with prominent public platforms, are courtiers. We are captivated by the hollow stagecraft of political theater as we are ruthlessly stripped of power. It is smoke and mirrors, tricks and con games, and the purpose behind it is deception. --Chris Hedges, Empire of Illusion

The White House kitchen garden

Res ipsa loquitur (click to biggify). Via Roger Doiron.
Sex sells
Forget gold chains and dirty raincoats. The leaders of companies that capitalize on the business of sex are, for better or worse, businesspeople like all others. Despite stigma and cultural assumptions about the sex industry, some of its leaders also produce Broadway shows, own sports teams or donate millions to family planning.
Some of these companies are publicly traded, and none is believed to be engaged in illegal activities.
Click through the following slide show (published July 12) for more on 20 chief executives in the business of selling sex.
The New Republic of Porn
An illegal front-yard kitchen garden

Illegal because of the town code of Drummondville, Quebec. Found at Rogerdoiron, via BoingBoing.
On Thursday afternoon a large party of friends, who had been enjoying themselves at a picnic in the picturesque neighbourhood of Boscastle, Devonshire, were about to return home, when the hat of Mr. Dennis, a solicitor, who was assisting two ladies to the carriage, was blown off, and, in running hastily to recover it, the unfortunate gentleman fell over the cliffs, and was instantly dashed to pieces. The deceased gentleman was much respected. – The Times, Sept. 1, 1853
  • Holmes and Watson never address one another by their first names.
  • Until 1990, the banknote factory at Debden, England, was heated by burning old banknotes.
  • The vowels AEIOUY can be arranged to spell the synonyms AYE and OUI.
  • 741602 + 437762 = 7416043776
  • “In all matters of opinion our adversaries are insane.” — Mark Twain
  • There once was a boring young Reverend
    Who preached till it seemed he would never end.
    His hearers, en masse,
    Got a pain in the ass,
    And prayed--- for relief of their nether end.

    Click on photo for video of landing – and takeoff
    A military cargo plane that typically requires 3,500 feet for takeoff landed unexpectedly Friday at Peter O. Knight Airport, where the longest runway is 95 feet short.
    Thanks Ed ~
    All the farmers for a hundred miles around were attending the wedding of a young Australian couple. Waiting for things to get started, they were somewhat shocked to see the bride's father storm up the aisle, jacket off,
    sleeves rolled up, and obviously very angry. "The weddin's off," he shouted, "Everybody bugger off!"
    Dismayed and muttering, the guests repaired to the parking lot, grumbling about their missed opportunity for
    free beer. One guest, a friend of the bride's father, held back, and approached him. "What's the problem?" he asked.
    "Someone stole a keg of beer, and some bastard fucked the bride!", exclaimed the father. The
    guest, taken aback, and rendered speechless, left the church, joining the other farmers.
    A few minutes later, the father reappeared and yelled "All right! Everyone back inside! The weddin's on again!"
    As the farmers filed back into the church, the friend again approached the father of the bride, and asked "What happened to make you change your mind?"

    Grinning sheepishly, he replied, "Oh, well, we... uh... we found the keg of beer."
    Knight Rides across Canada to Promote Chivalry
    Vincent Gabriel Kirouac of Quebec recently arrived in Saskatchewan on horseback and in armor. He doesn’t hold an official knighthood, but he is making his knightly journey across Canada to promote chivalrous conduct:
    He said he believes it is possible for people to behave with chivalry, even in hectic times. Kirouac insists he has not only donned a knight’s costume but has taken the role to heart. “I am a knight,” he said. “I’m trying to be that symbol of something that is incorruptible… and never to fail my duty, which is to be a knight and be good and be an example.” He said he hopes people who hear his message will adopt some of what he is espousing in their own lives. “It’s all about love,” he added.
    People who have met Kirouac on his journey have responded positively: He explained that finding a place to stay has been as simple as riding into a farm yard and knocking on a door. “You ask for the hospitality and they say ‘yes’ all the time,” he said, adding the encounter usually begins with the person who answered the door giving him a quizzical look. Link -via Oddity Central | Photo: CBC
    I can't believe it happened. The other day I jogged backward and put on eight pounds!
    Advertising: The science of arresting the human intelligence long enough to get money from it.
    - Stephen Leacock
    "Shoot for the stars, otherwise gravity gets in your way." -Cathy Middleton-
    There once was a midwife of Gaul
    Who had hardly no business at all.
    She cried, "Hell and damnation!
    There's no procreation---
    God made the French penis too small."
    Milo’s Mirror
    Milo is ready to whip that other kitten in the mirror! See those big kitten feet? Milo is a polydactyl cat -maybe he’ll grow into them someday. -via Buzzfeed
    Sports Park 60
    Look -it’s a whole inflatable water park! If you live on a lake or have a really big pond, you can blow up and fit this whole thing together for as many as 60 kids. I’m afraid to even ask how much it costs, as the price is not on the main product page, but I would suppose each component can be bought separately. Get a close-up look at each component at wibit. Link -via Holy Kaw!
    Never speak ill of yourself, your friends will always say enough on that subject. --Tallyrand
    New scientific theorie; 3rd RunnerUp
    Communist China is technologically underdeveloped because they have no alphabet. The lack of an alphabet means the Chinese cannot use "acronyms"; thus, they cannot communicate their ideas at a faster rate.
    Voodoo Doughnut Bacon Maple Ale
    Though it may sound like a silly name, this ale was inspired by the store named Voodoo Doughnuts. They feature a very popular doughnut made with bacon and maple syrup. Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? Then there’s the Pepto-Bismol pink bottle…. Link-via Laughing Squid
    Noisy Typer
    Noisy Typer is an application for Macs that makes your computer sound like an old-fashioned office typing pool, or at least one person typing on a manual typewriter. You can even hear the carriage return! But you might have to explain those sounds to your kids. This is perfect for pretending you are journalist Lois Lane writing for the Daily Planet. Oh yeah, it’s free. Link -via Laughing Squid
    Breaking Bad as a Kickstarter Project
    <img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70836" title="Breaking-Bad-Kickstarter-600" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="429" />
    No, you can’t really donate to help Walter White start a “pharmaceutical business.” However, this mock-up from Slackstory might give you a laugh! Only a portion is shown here; see the rest at the site. Link -via The Daily What
    A military cargo plane, flying over a populated area, suddenly loses power and starts to nose down. The pilot tries to pull up, but with all their cargo, the plane is too heavy. So he yells to the soldiers in back to throw things out to make the plane lighter. They throw out a pistol. “Throw out more!” shouts the pilot. So they throw out a rifle. “More!” he cries again. They heave out a missile, and the pilot regains control.
    He pulls out of the dive and lands safely at an airport. They get into a jeep and drive off. Pretty soon they meet a boy on the side of the road who’s crying. They ask him why he’s crying and he says “A pistol hit me on the head!”
    They drive more and meet another boy who’s crying even harder. Again they ask why and the boy says, “A rifle hit me on the head!”
    They apologize and keep driving. They meet a boy on the sidewalk who’s laughing hysterically. They ask him, “Kid, what’s so funny?” The boy replies, “I sneezed and a house blew up!”
    Pulling out
    To the ancient Greeks, just like today, picking a name for your new pup was an important step. But the process was a little more peculiar back then.
    Father Goose Story No. 3

    A wild life photographer goes on an expedition to South America to photograph the legendary and hitherto unseen foo bird. On the way he attempts to hire porters from a tribe of Pygmys. They warn him of the dreaded curse on all who look upon the bird and refuse to join. Undaunted the intrepid photographer continues to the banks of the Amazon where he sets up a blind and waits.

    After several days, lo and behold, a foo bird flies directly over the river. In a rush of excitement, the photographer rushes out of the blind and snaps off a shot. No sooner has he done this then a huge, evil smelling flock of foos congregate over his head and completely cover him in guano.

    The slimy stuff starts to harden and restrict his breathing. He frantically tries to get the stuff off but to no avail. Finally in desperation, he throws himself into the river. A large crocodile promptly eats him.

    The moral?
    It the foo shits, wear it.
    The Universe is on Twitter
    <img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70754" title="universe" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="628" />
    A novelty Twitter account should take the persona of someone that people talk about. Even better, some thing that people talk about, and that they don’t expect to get an answer from. People do talk about, and even address, “the universe,” so redditor Amathev took that idea and ran with it. Anytime someone invokes “the universe,” he’s there with a reply. See more replies here. You can even follow the universe! Link
    Fly the Friendly Skies in your Cessna
    And who says our controllers don't have a sense of humor?

    November 22, 1996 - Any More Complaints?
    The controller working a busy pattern told the 727 on downwind to make a 360 (do a complete circle, usually done to provide spacing between aircraft). The pilot of the 727 complained, "Do you know it costs us two thousand dollars to make a 360 in this airplane?"
    Without missing a beat the controller replied, "Roger, give me four thousand dollars worth."

    November 15, 1996 - What the...?!
    PSA was following United, taxiing out for departure. PSA called the tower and said "Tower, this is United 586. We've got a little problem, so go ahead and let PSA go first."
    The tower promptly cleared PSA fortakeoff before United had a chance to object to the impersonation.
    November 8, 1996 - Which Exit Did You Say That Was?
    A DC-10 had an exceedingly long landing rollout after landing with his approach speed just a little too high...San Jose Tower: "American 751 Heavy, turn right at the end if able. If not able, take the Guadalupe exit off of
    Highway 101 back to the airport."

    November 1, 1996 - Ouch!
    Western Airlines had a term for its second officers. The term was "GIB," and stood for "Guy In Back." The term was strictly unofficial and was actually frowned upon by the management at Western. It seems that some wise-guy pilot had been browsing through a dictionary and had made the discovery that a "gib" is a castrated tomcat.

    October 11, 1996 - What Is That Thang?
    It was a really nice day, right about dusk, and a Piper Malibu was being vectored into a long line of airliners in order to land at Kansas City...
    KC Approach: "Malibu three-two-Charlie, you're following a 727, one o'clock and three miles.
    "Three-two-Charlie: "We've got him. We'll follow him."
    KC Approach: "Delta 105, your traffic to follow is a Malibu, eleven o'clock and three miles. Do you have that traffic?
    "Delta 105: (long pause and then in a thick southern drawl) "Well... I've got something down there. Can't quite tell if it's a Malibu or a Chevelle, though."

    September 6, 1996 - Mmmm-mmm, Good!
    Tower: "Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on 124.7."
    Eastern 702: "Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure... by the way, as we lifted off, we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of the runway."
    Tower: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on 124.7... did you copy the report from Eastern?"
    Continental 635: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff... and yes, we copied Eastern and we've already notified our caterers."

    June 28, 1996 - No, That's not what I Said!
    O'Hare Approach Control:
    "United 329, traffic is a Fokker, one o'clock, 3 miles, eastbound."
    United 329: "Approach, I've always wanted to say this... I've got that Fokker in sight."
    The Praying Mantis Life Cycle in Pictures
    Follow the life cycle of a typical praying mantis, from the mating of the parents (as horrific as that can be for males) to adulthood. Different species are shown, too, at Environmental Graffiti. Link
    Reverse-engineering one of the greatest minds of all time by his information diet.
    You'll be tempted to hit the pause and rewind buttons during this video.
    Agouti: The Robin Hood of Rodents

    Photo: Christian Ziegler
    The cute cat-sized agouti above is much more than a lowly jungle creature. In fact, it is very much the Robin Hood of rodents. The furry bandit hides and buries black palm seeds, which it finds delicious. What it doesn't eat sprout into new plants. When other agoutis find the hidden cache, they steal and rebury the seeds at a different place, thus helping the plant spread! Link
    Excerpt from a fascinating article in this week's Harper's Magazine, entitled "Broken Heartland. The looming collapse of agriculture on the Great Plains."
    What did Bill Gates' wife say to him on their wedding night?
    "Now I know why you named your company Microsoft!
    Hand Feeding a Dragonfly
    Noelia found a cute little dragonfly. It was injured and unable to hunt for itself, so she fed it live ants using a pair of tweezers.-via Nerdcore
    “Weed Dating
    < img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70881" title="weed dating" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="95" /The rural equivalent of “speed dating,” this activity was developed to allow single people with at least a modicum of interest in gardening to meet others interested in outdoor activities.
    The women were given a crash course in how to identify a weed versus a vegetable or fruit, and then instructed to pass that information along to the men, who rotated from each bed every three minutes.
    Participating farms in Idaho, Vermont, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Ohio also provide numbered mason jars into which persons too shy to speak can leave messages for potential partners.
    Link. Image: Jessie L. Bonner/AP
    <img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70838" title="panthrs" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="374" />
    Two baby black panther cubs were introduced to the public at Tierpark Zoo in Berlin, Germany, over the weekend. Buzzfeed has a collection of photographs taken at the event. I’m sure you’ll agree that they are two armfuls of adorable! Link (Image credit: Tobias Schwarz/Reuters)
    Dita Von Teese on Burlesque, Fast Cars, and Old Lingerie
    < img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70843" title="vonteese" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="188Dita Von Teese was instrumental in reviving the art of Burlesque in the early 1990s, and is now known as “America’s most famous stripper.” But Burlesque is just the beginning of Von Teese’s love of vintage Americana. She collects antique hats, figurines, taxidermy, Hollywood and Burlesque memorabilia, and lingerie. Von Teese gave an interview about the things she treasures.
    Aside from that stack of letters, photos, and itineraries from Sally Rand, I have an important original Alfred Eisenstaedt photograph of Gypsy Rose Lee. I also have stacks of catalogs from Lili St. Cyr’s lingerie business. It means a lot to me because each item stands for these women that came before me and made it possible for me to do what I do now, and for the entire neo-burlesque movement. I’ve learned a lot from them about how to maintain a career that goes beyond the days of looking good in a G-string. These women weren’t stupid, they all had life-long careers, and they inspire me a lot. Only a few of them managed to branch out into other businesses that pertained to striptease and glamour, but they didn’t rely on their bodies and looks to stay at the top.
    Read the rest of the interview, accompanied by plenty of pictures, at Collector’s Weekly. Link
    The 17-Year-Old Drug Kingpin
    A certain 17-year-old high school student near Cincinnati, Ohio, certainly has a zeal for entrepreneurship: he has managed to juggle academics and run his own multimillion dollar business. Meet the 17-year-old drug kingpin:
    Ohio police have arrested an alleged drug kingpin, a 17-year-old accused of running a multimillion dollar ring that distributed high-grade marijuana through two school districts and netted $20,000 a month.
    When cops raided the boy's bedroom at his parents' home, they found over $6,000 in cash, prosecutors said.
    Russell Goldman of ABC News has the story: Link [Auto-starting video]
    Once in a Lifetime Tattoo Misspelled
    <img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-71100" title="Jerri Peterson Olympic tattoo" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="200" />Jerri Peterson of Atlanta, Georgia, was thrilled with the chance to carry the Olympic Flame in the torch relay as it passed through Derby, England. She was selected to participate because of her charity work. The 54-year-old Peterson decided to get a tattoo as a souvenir of the relay, and only afterward realized that the word “Olympic” was misspelled as “Oylmpic.”
    She booked a session with a “really good” tattoo artist in her home state of Georgia, and took a friend along for moral support.
    Initially she was delighted with how it looked and it was only when she sent a photo of the tattoo to a friend that the spelling mistake was pointed out.
    She said: “I looked at it and I was so disappointed. I called my husband and he giggled a little bit.
    “Then I started laughing about it and I’ve laughed ever since.”
    Mrs Peterson pointed out the mistake to the tattoo artist responsible but declined his offer to correct it.
    Peterson looks at the bright side: her tattoo is certainly unique! Link -via Arbroath
    Google Street View’s Online Tours of the Shackleton’s and Scott’s Antarctic Huts
    They're a bit out of the way, but thanks to new panoramas launched by Google Street View today, you too can explore two of the most famous huts in the history of exploration: the Shackleton's hut and the Scott's hut in Antarctica.
    With this technology, you can go inside places like Shackleton’s Hut (pictured above) and the other small wooden buildings that served as bases from which the explorers launched their expeditions. They were built to withstand the drastic weather conditions only for the few short years that the explorers inhabited them, but remarkably, after more than a century, the structures are still intact, along with well-preserved examples of the food, medicine, survival gear and equipment used during the expeditions. Now anyone can explore these huts and get insight into how these men lived for months at a time.
    View the panoramic imageries of the huts of the South Pole expeditioners over at the project's blog page: Link
    Two wildebeests down by the river consider an important question: what is that in the river? Another gem from Bird Box Studio. -via The Daily What
    n. the act or posture of reclining on a couch
    “Husband Left Us for a 22 Year Old. House for Sale by Scorned, Slightly Bitter, Newly Single Owner. Adulterers Need Not Apply”
    When life gives you lemon, you make lemonade, so when her husband left her for a younger woman, Elle Zober decided to use that as a ploy to sell the family home they once shared.
    The sign says: "Husband Left Us for a 22 Year Old ... House for sale by scorned, slightly bitter, newly single owner ... Adulterers Need Not Apply" Link to Elle's website- via The Daily Mail
    That Sure Is One Lazy Polar Bear
    He looks like he’s thinking about calling room service so he can enjoy breakfast in bed. After all, the whole hunting for your own meal is just so tiring.

    German Street Artist Gives Bridge A LEGO Makeover

    <img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-70743" title="4" src=""; alt="" width="433" height="650" />
    German street artist MEGX, also known as Martin Heuwold, was commissioned to give this boring old bridge a LEGO brick makeover, and the end result was quite delightful as you can see in the picture above.
    It took Martin a month to finish the whimsical makeover, with help from city workers, and it certainly adds a bit of color to that stony old town! Link–via DesignTAXI
    French Cows Drink Wine
    < img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70752" title="cows" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="100" />Studies show that happy animals provide better-tasting meat. Taking a cue from that idea, Languedoc-Roussillon winemaker Jean-Charles Tastavy and cattle farmer Claude Chaballier decided to experiment by giving beef cattle some wine with their feed.
    “The cows appreciated the menu and ate with enjoyment,” Tastavy said.
    And now, the French cows are getting a daily oenological infusion – of up to two bottles each. Tastavy explains they’ve scaled the cattle’s wine intake based on authorities’ recommended drinking habits: “For a person, we know it’s two or three glasses of wine a day. For a cow, that means 1 to 1.5 liters per day,” Tastavy told the AFP.
    But the wine wasn’t boosting just the cows’ spirits. The growers found it also improved their taste. Michelin-starred chef Laurent Pourcel had a taste of the “viande de luxe” – luxury beef – and hedges that there’s a bustling market for it among a foodie crowd. It has a “very special texture, beautiful, marbled and tender, which caramelizes while cooking.”
    The beef from these cows is quite a bit more expensive than other beef, because the cost of feeding each cow tripled with the addition of wine. Link
    "The boy Scouts of American has announced that they will continue to enforce their policy of banning openly gay boys from being scouts and openly gay adults from taking leadership positions in the organization. Between this and same sex marriage, people really don't want gay people tying knots." -Jimmy Kimmel
    Never hold discussions with the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room. - Winston Churchill
    "The FBI is investigating a recent flight. Passengers found needles in their turkey sandwiches. Thank god it was just needles and not a real threat to safety like a 9 oz. bottle of body lotion." -Jimmy Kimmel

    [Following are some very funny spelling bloopers caught in local newspapers, publications and various emails. See if you can catch the goofs.]
    1. " autopsy to determine if the elderly man lost courteousness for medical reasons." (Trenton, N.J.)
    2. "[An NBA coach] will take charge of a young team still in the throws of a roster overhaul." (Vernon, Conn.)
    3. "'It's pretty exciting,' according to his material grandmother." (Potsdam, N.Y.)
    4. "The MCCC fight team won 21 out of 32 awards and brought home nine metals." Including the gold? (Trenton, N.J.)
    5. "McNabb...exasperated the injury attempting to chase down Dallas Cowboys safety Roy Williams." (Trenton, N.J.)
    6. "Boxer Pups AKC, 1M, 1F, Bread for Health and Temperament." (e-mail)
    7. "[Paris Hilton] was probably going through cocaine withdrawls." Is she from the South? (Sunnyvale, Calif.)
    8. "Our lunch menu [includes] a variety of hot entrees and tempting deserts." Presumably also hot. (Upper Saint Clair, Pa.)
    9. "Vincent was a brawny Swiss ex-patriot." (San Jose, CA)
    10. "...those who acquaint shopping with charity." (Simsbury, Conn.)

    Corrections: 1. consciousness 2. throes 3. maternal 4. medals 5. exacerbated 6. bred 7. withdrawals 8. desserts 9. expatriate 10. equate
    The Wipe-Up

    Find a friend who likes to show off or prove himself all the time, then tell them you have a test of speed and reaction for them and that you think you are faster. what you do is pour some water on a tile floor (a
    puddle about 10" wide works well), grab a fork and a towel and tell them you think you can wipe up the water before they poke you with the fork. Also tell them that you are really quick and to make it fair they need to
    sit on the floor near the puddle with their legs spread to the sides so the puddle is between their knees.
    Here is where the fun stuff comes in, tell them to go on three, then start counting (all the while you are
    holding the towel) one - two - th....grab their feet and drag their ass through it
    The 33 Most-Watched Cat Videos Ever
    It’s been five years since we first posted Corey William’s “The Mean Kitty Song” in 2007. It now has racked up over 64 million views at YouTube, which places it at #3 on the list of the 33 most-watched cat videos ever. You’ll enjoy going through the list and you may be surprised at #1. Link -via mental_floss
    Awesome Street Name
    <img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70712" title="haviture" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="375" />
    What genius thought this up? Redditor ComputerSavvy looked it up and found there are four streets in the United States named Haviture Way. Now, where is the sign that says Ididitmigh Way? Link
    Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader gave us the story of the Queen of the Jail.
    Why I Will Never Have a Girlfriend
    came from the Annals of Improbable Research.
    Order and Chaos
    Arrange a deck of cards in alternating colors, black and red. Now cut the deck so that the bottom card of one pile is black and the other is red. Riffle-shuffle the two piles together again. Now remove cards from the top of the pack in pairs. How many of these pairs should we expect to contain cards of differing colors?
    Surprisingly, all of them will. During the shuffle, suppose a black card falls first. It must be followed by either the next card in its own pile, which is red, or the first card from the other pile, which is also red. Either way, this first pair will contain one black card and one red card, and by the same principle so will each of the other 25 pairs produced by the shuffle. This effect was first identified by mathematician Norman Gilbreath in 1958.
    Related: Arrange the deck in a repeating cycle of suits, such as spade-heart-club-diamond, spade-heart-club-diamond, etc. Ranks don’t matter. Now deal about half of this deck onto the table and riffle-shuffle the two halves back together. If you draw cards from the top in groups of four, you’ll find that each quartet contains one card of each suit.
    Place your curser in the middle of the pic, close your eyes & move your mouse around a bit, then see if you can spot which one is yours lol
    Sex in the Olympic Village
    <img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-70710" title="olyrings_576" src=""; alt="" width="150" height="162" />What happens when you put 10,000 excited, young, attractive, healthy athletes together in one place without parents or journalists? You’re exactly right.
    Home to more than 10,000 athletes at the Summer Games and 2,700 at the Winter, the Olympic Village is one of the world’s most exclusive clubs. To join, prospective members need only have spectacular talent and — we long assumed — a chaste devotion to the most intense competition of their lives. But the image of a celibate Games began to flicker in ’92 when it was reported that the Games’ organizers had ordered in prophylactics like pizza. Then, at the 2000 Sydney Games, 70,000 condoms wasn’t enough, prompting a second order of 20,000 and a new standing order of 100,000 condoms per Olympics.
    Many Olympians, past and present, abide by what Summer Sanders, a swimmer who won two gold medals, a silver and a bronze in Barcelona, calls the second Olympic motto: “What happens in the village stays in the village.” Yet if you ask enough active and retired athletes often enough to spill their secrets, the village gates will fly open. It quickly becomes clear that, summer or winter, the games go on long after the medal ceremony. “There’s a lot of sex going on,” says women’s soccer goalkeeper Hope Solo, a gold medalist in 2008. How much sex? “I’d say it’s 70 percent to 75 percent of Olympians,” offers world-record-holding swimmer Ryan Lochte, who will be in London for his third Games. “Hey, sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.”
    ESPN magazine talks to several athletes who don’t mind spilling the beans about the real games that go on in the Olympic Village every two years. Link -via Breakfast Links
    Because We Can’t Get Enough Maru
    Maru tends to be typecast as the box-loving cat, but he has plenty more interests than just boxes. For example, he also love bags and grass. Via Cute Overload
    Caffeinated Pacific Ocean waters measured along the Oregon coast
    You notice how often Ed writes about Polish & Oregon people lately?
    My friend Nancy and I decided to introduce her elderly mother to the magic of the Internet. Our first move was to access Google, and we told her it could answer any question she had.
    Nancy’s mother was very skeptical until Nancy said, “It’s true, Mom.
    “Think of something to ask it.” As I sat with fingers poised over the keyboard, Nancy’s mother thought a minute, then responded, “How is Aunt Helen feeling?”
    The 120 Stars Of Super Mario 64
    <img class="aligncenter size-medium wp-image-70735" title="sm64" src=""; alt="" width="500" height="281" />
    This fun little vector art montage (half of which can be seen above) was created by deviantARTist kitsovereign, paying homage to the characters and fun to be found in the classic game Super Mario 64.
    As an extra organized bonus, kitsovereign has also created a chart which categorizes the images according to their in-game mission, which can be found at the Kotaku link below. Link –via Kotaku
    [When] enough people with different perspectives [run] into one another in unpredictable ways-the group dynamic will take care of itself. All these errant discussions add up. In fact, they may even be the most essential part of the creative process. Although such conversations will occasionally be unpleasant-not everyone is always in the mood for small talk or criticism-that doesn't mean that they can be avoided. --Jonah Lehrer, writer on psychology and technology

    The most creative spaces are those which hurl us together. It is the human friction that makes the sparks.--Jonah Lehrer

    Things that will destroy man:
    Politics without principle;
    pleasure without conscience;
    wealth without work;
    knowledge without character;
    business without morality;
    science without humanity;
    worship without sacrifice.
    --Mohandas Gandhi


    We spend so much of our time discussing and analyzing our tools, we sometimes lose sight of what it is we're trying to build.
    --Jaffer Ali, 'Forever Jung - What Makes Social Media Social?'

    The most important part of education is proper training in the nursery.--Plato

    In this and like communities, public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment, nothing can fail; without it, nothing can succeed. Consequently, he who molds public sentiment goes deeper than he who enacts statutes or pronounces decisions.
    ~ Abraham Lincoln
    "Farmers in France have started giving their cows two bottles of wine every day, in order to make better beef. Unfortunately, all the cows wind up doing is texting their ex-milkers." -Jimmy Fallon

    "Have you seen the Olympic uniforms? It's for the American Olympic team and it's berets. To me, nothing says America like a guy in a beret. Look at our founding fathers, they all wore berets." -David Letterman
    Social Media Inspired Outfits
    Anatomical flap up books that simulated human dissection.
    Pop-up books. Not just for kids anymore! These come from a most excellent exhibit last year at Duke University called Animated Anatomies. These anatomical pop-up books were used by medical students to study anatomy and surgery in 3-D context from the 16th to 20th centuries. Sadly, the exhibition has long since ended.What’s that? Here’s a video tour through several of the pop-up books from the exhibit:
    So how will the medical students of tomorrow learn anatomy and surgical techniques? Don’t miss Jack Choi’s demonstration of a virtual dissection table from this year’s TED! Uncomfortably awesome!
    The scientist does not study nature because it is useful; he studies it because he delights in it, and he delights in it because it is beautiful. If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth knowing, and if nature were not worth knowing, life would not be worth living.
    Henri Poincaré (via unbearablevastness)
    Q. How can you tell if someone is half Catholic and half Jewish?
    A. When he goes to confession, he takes a lawyer with him.
    Bazinga indeed!
    The Vasectomy
    A man goes into the hospital for a vasectomy. Before the procedure a very attractive nurse comes in and takes his vitals, then tells him to take all of his clothes off.

    When he is fully undressed she instructs him to lie down on the table. The man obeys. The nurse then takes all of her clothes off and climbs on top and has her way with him.

    Upon the completion of the act the man catches his breath and asks what that was all about. The nurse informs the patient that studies have shown that before a vasectomy if the man has an ejaculation, he
    will be more relaxed and that the cord is easier for the surgeon to locate and sever, thereby making the surgery safer, more efficient and quicker.

    The nurse then wheels the patient to the operating room. While they are going down the hall the patient looks through a window to the right and sees six men in a room masturbating.

    Curious, the man asks,” What are they doing in there”?
    The nurse responds, ” They’re preparing for vasectomies too, but you have Blue Cross, and they have Obama Care.”
    Two Crows Mark Up a Road as They Fight over a Bag of Flour
    What white powder caused these lines? Firefighters in Edmonds, Washington didn’t take any chances and sent in a hazardous materials handling team:
    “It turns out the white powdery substance is, in fact, flour,” Snohomish County Fire District 1 spokeswoman Leslie Hynes said.
    A witness told firefighters that a couple of crows were to blame.
    The woman was going out for a jog when she noticed the black birds dragging around the bag of white flour.
    “She took it away from them, put it in a garbage can and kept running,” Hynes said. “Two crows and a two-alarm hazmat incident.”
    Link -via Nerdcore | Photo: KIRO 7 News

    The Roadkill Experiment
    Would you drive out of your way to kill an animal on the side of a road? Mark Rober did the experiment and showed that 6% of drivers would swerve to run over an animal on the shoulder of a road (snake being the most victimized animal).
    Oh, and yeah, almost 9 out of 10 of these sadistic animal killers drove SUVs. Take from it what you will: Hit play or go to Link [YouTube] - via Gizmodo

    An interesting video about the issues humanity is facing as Earth’s human population is skyrocketing. Hurray for the industrial revolution!
    Yep, you’ve read that headline right. This video will teach you on how you can use pee to start a fire. No joke.
    WARNING: This project should not be attempted without adult supervision and adequate training. Misuse, or careless use, of tools or projects may result in serious injury, property damage, and/or death. Use of this video content is at your own risk.
    HBO’s online store is offering up seven Game of Thrones house sigil shot glasses. This could make for some very epic drinking times come season 3.
    Grab some friends, pick a house and make some rules. Or just play by my favorite set, take a shot every time Joffrey gets slapped. You’ll be drunk in fifteen minutes.
    The Rising Cost Of The Olympics
    With the 2012 Summer Olympics starting next week, take a look at how some of the countries that have hosted the big games in the past have stuck to their budget, or not - as you'll soon see. Also take a look at what the 2012 Olympics is expected to cost and how it will be the most expensive games to date.
    Llamas Assist In The Long Goodbyes Of The Elderly
    Alzheimer's and dementia patients incur an end-of-life experience that differs markedly from their care-givers. They traverse in two different worlds which might be parallel, but often don't allow them to connect as they once did. While set schedules and antipsychotic drugs are prescribed my many physicians, the idea of adding fun and animals to one's regimen is relatively new.

    In a recent AARP report, one unconventional approach is seeing significant results with some late-stage Alzheimer's patient. 95-year old Laura Damuck who lives at the Life Care Center of Nashoba Valley in Littleton, Massachusetts has come to know the comfort of llama.
    Young Gorillas Disarm Hunters’ Traps

    Photo: Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund
    Researchers at the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund in Rwanda noticed that young gorillas in the reserve did something remarkable: they can disarm traps left by hunters.
    On Tuesday tracker John Ndayambaje spotted a trap very close to the Kuryama gorilla clan. He moved in to deactivate the snare, but a silverback named Vubu grunted, cautioning Ndayambaje to stay away, Vecellio said.
    Suddenly two juveniles—Rwema, a male; and Dukore, a female; both about four years old—ran toward the trap.
    As Ndayambaje and a few tourists watched, Rwema jumped on the bent tree branch and broke it, while Dukore freed the noose.
    The pair then spied another snare nearby—one the tracker himself had missed—and raced for it. Joined by a third gorilla, a teenager named Tetero, Rwema and Dukore destroyed that trap as well.
    The speed with which everything happened makes Vecellio, the gorilla program coordinator, think this wasn't the first time the young gorillas had outsmarted trappers.
    "They were very confident," she said. "They saw what they had to do, they did it, and then they left."
    Ker Than of National Geographic News has the story: Link
    Parakeet Whistles the Theme Song to The Andy Griffith Show
    “The Fishin’ Hole” was whistled for the opening of The Andy Griffith Show, but it does have lyrics. Still, Tookie the parakeet prefers the whistled version. -via Althouse

    Ellen Reads '50 Shades of Grey'

    Ellen was asked to record the new steamy novel "50 Shades of Grey" for the audio book. Things didn't go according to plan.
    We live the time that a match flickers; we pop the cork of a ginger-beer bottle, and the earthquake swallows us on the instant. Is it not odd, is it not incongruous, is it not, in the highest sense of human speech, incredible, that we should think so highly of the ginger-beer, and regard so little the devouring earthquake?
    – Robert Louis Stevenson, “Aes Triplex,” 1878
    How much Force power can Yoda output?

    Another great entry in XKCD’s “What If?” series, which you need to subscribe to now, or else I just don’t even know.
    Non-Newtonian miracles
    Walking on water is usually the stuff of miracles or over-the-top Vegas magicians. But with a little knowledge of physics, you can do it yourself. Normally, when a force hits the top of a liquid like water, the surface tension breaks down and you sink right in. It happens so fast that you don’t even realize it. But if that force is light enough, like when thewater strider glides across a lake or when the Jesus lizard sprints across, you don’t sink.
    Some fluids, though, don’t obey the regular rules. Non-Newtonian fluids, like cornstarch mixed with water, actually compress when large forces (like a foot) hit them, creating a sort of “stepping-stone” effect. See it in the video above, and read more about the science here. Try it at your next pool party! (via DISCOVER Magazine)~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    One of the company’s finest technicans was drafted and sent to boot camp. At the rifle range, he was given some instruction, a rifle, and bullets. He fired several shots at the target. The report came from the target area that all attempts had completely missed the target.
    The technician looked at his rifle, and then at the target. He looked at the rifle again, and then at the target again. He put his finger over the end of the rifle barrel and squeezed the trigger with his other hand. The end of his finger was blown off, whereupon he yelled toward the target area, “It’s leaving here just fine, the trouble must be at your end!”
    Another man called and asked if he could rent a car in Dallas. When I pulled up the reservation, I noticed he had a 1 hour lay-over in Dallas. When I asked him why he wanted to rent a car, he said “I heard Dallas was a big airport and I need a car to drive between the gates to save time.”
    gedanken tank puzzle 1
    A tank of water has two holes of equal area, one at top and one at bottom. The top one leads to a downspout, so that both holes discharge their water at the same level. Ignoring friction, which hole produces the faster flow of water?
    You actually don’t need to know the physics in order to solve this — it yields to an insight.
    The water flows from both openings at the same rate. If it didn’t, we could connect the two to create a perpetual-motion machine.
    (From Lewis Epstein’s Thinking Physics Is Gedanken Physics, 1989.)
    After the worldwide strike of the "I LOVE YOU VIRUS," reports are already coming in that the virus is mutating into several stages. Within the next few hours, expect to see:

    The original "I love you" virus
    The "I like you alot" virus
    The "You're nice, but I just want to be friends" virus
    The "Look, it was just a date...don't get clingy" virus
    The "Okay, I think its best if we don't have anymore contact" virus
    The "It was late, I was drunk, you were easy" virus
    The "Stop calling me, you unfeeling jerk" virus
    The "That's it, I hate you and your stupid dog" virus
    and finally,
    The "You have made an enemy today, prepare to be boarded" virus
    Are Yellow Jackets Wasps Or Bees?
    Southern Yellow jacket
    It’s summer, and Yellow Jackets are out in force throughout the country. They’ve got a sometimes fearsome reputation—should we be alarmed? It helps to know a little about these creatures. For instance, did you know that yellow jackets are actually a species of wasp?
    A Guide to Love and Sex for Virgins
    As a young, modern virgin of the nineties, you no doubt have many questions concerning romance, love, even s..e..x. In this sensitive and frank "question and answer" format, noted sex therapist Dr Ruth explains
    everything you've ever wondered about.

    Q: Where can I find the man of my dreams ?
    A: This is a difficult question, since every virgin probably has a different ideal of what their own personal Prince Charming should act and look like. However, when it comes to finding Mr Right, I can give you a good suggestion on where to start - and that's in a bar. That's right, go to a bar... preferably the kind that smells of stale beer and lots of men crowded around watching a sports event on television. Pick a man that looks interesting - it's best to stay away from the shallow "pretty boys" in designer clothes with bulging muscles. Instead, I recommend you pick somebody a little older and wiser, possibly reassuring pot belly. Boldly approach him, offer to buy him a few beers, then invite him back to your place. He'll advise you from there.

    Q: How do I know if I found Mr Right ?
    A: Unfortunately, there's no sure way to tell. Therefore, I suggest you try out many different kinds of men and many different kinds of bars.

    Q: Do men like aggresive virgins?
    A: Definitely. Although they don't admit it, men are often shy - so it's up to you to be bold. In addition to bars, don't be afraid to approach men on streetcorners, in restaurants, even in restrooms. Break the ice with simple "hello", followed by an offer to buy them dinner, drinks - even an expensive gift. Then invite them to back to your place.

    Q: What if a man's married ?
    A: Go for it. This is a great opportunity to enjoy the valuable experience a married man possesses, without being tied down by any sort of commitment.

    Q: But what if I fall in love with a married man ?
    A: This is a tough one, especially if you're a woman and find yourself pregnant. Ask him how he feels about his wife and family. If he says his wife doesn't understand him and he's thinking of leaving her, believe him and continue your relationship, secure in the knowledge that he'll soon make good his promise. Married men rarely lie about such important matters.

    Q: How do I know if I'm ready for sex ?
    A: Ask your boyfriend. He'll know when the time is right. When it comes to love and sex, experienced men are much more responsible, since they're not confused emotionally as virgins. It's a proven fact.

    Q: Should I have sex on the first date ?
    A: YES. Before if possible.

    Q: What exactly happens during the act of sex ?
    A: Again, this is entirely up to the man. The important thing to remember is that you must do whatever he tells you without question. Sometimes, however, he may ask you to do certain things that may at first seem strange to you. Do them anyway.

    Q: How long should the sex act last ?
    A: This is a natural and normal part of nature, so don't feel ashamed or embarrassed. After your man has finished making love, he'll have a natural desire to leave you suddenly, and go out with his friends to play golf. Or perhaps another activity, such as going out with his friends to the bar for the purpose of consuming large amounts of alcohol and sharing a few personal thoughts with his buddies. Don't feel left out - while he's gone you can busy yourself by doing his laundry, cleaning his apartment, or perhaps even going out to buy him an
    expensive gift. He'll come back when he's ready.

    Q: What is "afterplay" ?
    A: After a man has finished making love, he needs to replenish his manly energy. "Afterplay" is simply a list of important activities for you to do after the lovemaking. This includes lighting his cigarette, making him a sandwich or pizza, bringing him a few beers, or leaving him alone to sleep while you go out and buy him an expensive gift.

    Q: Does the size of the penis matter ?
    A: Yes. Although many virgins believe that quality, not quantity, is important, studies show this is simply not true. The average erect male penis measures about six centimeters. Anything longer than that is extremely rare and, if by some chance your lover's sexual organ is seven centimeters or over, you should go down on your knees and thank you lucky stars and do everything possible to please him, such as doing his laundry, cleaning his apartment and buying him an expensive gift.

    Q: What about the orgasm ?
    A: What about it ? There's no such thing. It's a myth.

    Q: Are you sure ?
    A: Will you stop asking so many questions ? Do you distrust experienced men or something? Instead, prove how much you care for your boyfriend by going out and buying him an expensive gift.
    The duffer muffed his tee shot into the woods, then hit into a few trees, then proceeded to hit across the fairway into another woods. Finally, after banging away several more times, he proceeded to hit into a sand trap.
    All the while, he'd noticed that the club professional had been watching.
    "What club should I use now?" he asked the pro.
    "I don't know," the pro replied. "What game are you playing?"
    Why do farts smell?
    So deaf people can enjoy them too.
    A passenger train is creeping along, slowly. Finally it creaks to a halt. A passenger sees a conductor walking by outside.
    “What’s going on?” she yells out the window.
    “Cow on the track!” replies the conductor.
    Ten minutes later, the train resumes its slow pace.
    Within five minutes, however, it stops again.
    The woman sees the same conductor walk again.
    She leans out the window and yells, “What happened? Did we catch up with the cow again?”
    Ursa ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`


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