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"Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You" (for about a week)

YouTube link. Hate to leave the blog again so soon, but real life calls.  YOLO, and all that..,

New Zealand basketball team's haka

YouTube link. Before their match with the United States team, the New Zealanders performed a traditional "haka" The various types of haka include whakatu waewae, tutu ngarahu and peruperu.

World-record tomato


Grown by a man in Ely, Minnesota, it weighed 8.41 pounds. The Big Zac variety tends to have “megablooms,” with individual tomatoes growing fused together.

El Caminito del Rey - the world's scariest hiking trail

YouTube link.  Intriguing and scenic, but I had to hold on to things just to watch the video. El Caminito del Rey (The King's pathway, often shortened to El Camino del Rey) is a walkway, now fallen into disrepair, pinned along the steep walls of a narrow gorge in El Chorro, near Alora in Spain.

The death of Yiddish

YouTube link. I've never been one to share the agonies of those who despair over the death of languages, except insofar as the loss of ancient languages renders certain documents and artworks unreadable.  An entry at The Dish discusses the inclusion of Yiddish as a threatened language: Frankel comments on how secular Judaism has contributed to the death of Yiddish and a simultaneous loss of traditional Jewish identity: The secular community is dead, dead, dead.

School principal inspires her students


Jody De St. Hubert, principal of Alice Smith Elementary in Hopkins, Minnesota, challenged her students last year to read over 10,000 books.

This is not a parrot


To speed up your re-orientation, note that the "eye" is painted on the center of the model's forehead.

Learn about human decomposition at a "body farm"

"Excarnation in Texas" is an essay exploring a body farm in Texas.  This isn't the body farm I'm familiar with in Tennessee, but it serves a similar purpose: Kate, an associate professor at Texas State University in San Marcos, does most of her work at their Forensic Anthropology Center (FACTS)—the centerpiece of which is the Forensic Anthropology Research Facility (FARF), the largest of America’s five “body farms.” Including Kate, FACTS has three full-time researchers, a rotating crew of anthropology graduate students and undergraduate volunteers, and a steady influx of cadaver donations from both individuals and their next of kin—brought in from Texas hospitals, hospices, medical examiners’ offices, and funeral homes.

A walkway in Jerez


Apparently those are grapevines, not trees. “Jerez” is the hispanicized version of “Sherish” which was its Moorish name when the town was under Islamic rule.

Because physics

YouTube link. You can make your own pendulum wave device (and you don't have to use bowling balls). Via Nothing to do with Arbroath.

A staggering intracranial deficit


  New Scientist provides this image of a 24-year old woman who appears to have a form of cerebellar aplasia, with surprisingly minimal symptoms: The discovery was made when the woman was admitted to the Chinese PLA General Hospital of Jinan Military Area Command in Shandong Province complaining of dizziness and nausea.

Panoramic photo oddities


The image above was generated by Google Street View (via Digital Spy).  Other interesting examples can be viewed at Neatorama and the links provided there.

Words meaning "intoxicated"

The history of drinking vocabulary is an exercise in semantics rather than sociolinguistics. Terms for being drunk can’t usually be explained by referring to such variables as age, gender, social class, occupation, or regional background.

"Ohaguro" - fashionably black teeth


Ohaguro is the custom of dyeing one's teeth black. It was most popular in Japan until the Meiji era. Tooth painting was also known and practiced in the southeastern parts of China and Southeast Asia.

About 500 QI buzzers

YouTube link. Those unfamiliar with the show may note that the testing of the buzzers typically occurs in groups of four, culminating with Alan Davies.

More than half of adults in the U.S. are unmarried


This is the first time the percentage has exceeded 50% since record-keeping began in 1976.

Word for the day: "knuckle-buster"


[A] 68-year-old Ohio businessman has stockpiled more than 8,000 of the old-fashioned credit-card-processing machines, known for their tendency to scrape the fingers of the merchants who operate them.

Desks with pedals for preschoolers


Via Reddit.

How to impress fans and terrify opponents. Not.

YouTube link. Via Neatorama.

High school Native American mascots


I searched the database and found 2,129 sports teams that reference Braves, Chiefs, Indians, Orangemen, Raiders, Redmen, Reds, Redskins, Savages, Squaws, Tribe and Warriors, as well as tribe names such as Apaches, Arapahoe, Aztecs, Cherokees, Chickasaws, Chinooks, Chippewas, Choctaws, Comanches, Eskimos, Mohawks, Mohicans, Seminoles, Sioux and Utes.


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