Welcome to ...

The place where the world comes together in honesty and mirth.
Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Muppets score with classic-rock hit

Muppets score with classic-rock hit

The Muppets' fun, furry take on Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" becomes a Web sensation.

Easy meals from Thanksgiving leftovers

Easy meals from Thanksgiving leftovers

Give your post-Thanksgiving dishes a fresh flavor with recipes that anyone can make.

Retailers encouraged by holiday shopping

Retailers encouraged by holiday shopping

The start of the holiday shopping season brings signs of renewed spending.

Detox diet for holiday overindulgence

Detox diet for holiday overindulgence

Bounce back after huge holiday meals with these cleansing teas and healthy eating tips.

A 'Cash for Clunkers' for appliances

A 'Cash for Clunkers' for appliances

Another tax-supported shopping program is expected in the coming weeks.

Why New York's apples are going unpicked

Why New York's apples are going unpicked

The Empire State's orchards are being carpeted with red as fruit is left to drop to the ground.

The most recession-proof jobs right now

The most recession-proof jobs right now

These five careers have immediate openings and long-term potential.

White House crashers met Obama

White House crashers met Obama

The Virginia couple who crashed a state dinner met the president in the receiving line.

Sticking it to the wingnuts

Sticking it to the wingnuts

Roomba Takes Down a Deadly Viper

You probably have done this yourself: used your vacuum cleaner and gotten something wrapped around a rotating brush, perhaps a string.

In this case a Roomba, that autonomous robotic vacuum cleaner, did the same, but with a venomous viper in Israel.

Full Story

NC Busts Reveal Fake IDs Booming

The state continues to see a booming business in fake IDs.

NC Busts Reveal Fake IDs Booming

China executes 2 for child abductions

China has executed two men for abducting and selling 15 children, many of whom were taken as babies or toddlers and have not yet been reunited with their parents, state media said Friday.

Full Story

Chemists Produce a New Blue

Blue is sometimes not an easy color to make.

Full Story

Iran seizes lawyer's Nobel Peace medal

Iran seizes lawyer's Nobel Peace medal

Human rights lawyer and Nobel laureate Shirin Ebadi says the government has confiscated her medal.

Brazil: 'Gringos' must pay to save Amazon

Brazil: 'Gringos' must pay to save Amazon

Brazil president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva says rich nations should pay to protect the rain forest.

Global-warming blame

Cancer drug may treat diabetes

Mark Pescovitz is a transplant surgeon and medical research scientist.

Today, he and his colleagues published a paper in the New England Journal of Medicine about a new way to slow and possibly even stop the progression of type 1 diabetes, also known as juvenile-onset diabetes.

The approach uses the drug Rituxan, normally indicated to treat non-hodgkins lymphoma and rheumatoid arthritis.

From Reuters:
Rituximab-Rituxan-783497 "What this study does is open the door to a whole new way to approaching type 1 diabetes," Dr. Mark Pescovitz of Indiana University, who led the study, said in a telephone interview.

Rituxan, known generically as rituximab, is made by Genentech, a unit of Roche Holding AG and Biogen Idec Inc. It was designed to wipe out immune cells known as B lymphocytes, which proliferate out of control in lymphoma.

The same cells are also involved in the autoimmune destruction of healthy cells and tissue seen in rheumatoid arthritis and, in theory, in juvenile diabetes.

Usually, by the time diabetes symptoms appear, 80 to 90 percent of those insulin-producing cells have been destroyed. The Pescovitz team gave Rituxan hoping to save the remaining cells.

The treatment worked at first and the body produced more insulin. But over time, the effects faded, and insulin production began to decline at the same rate as among people who received placebo.

Pescovitz said he was not disappointed. Further tests will show if repeated treatments with Rituxan or newer drugs that also eliminate B lymphocytes will keep insulin production up.

Plants Have a Social Life

From Wired:

After decades of seeing plants as passive recipients of fate, scientists have found them capable of behaviors once thought unique to animals. Some plants even appear to be social, favoring family while pushing strangers from the neighborhood.

Research into plant sociality is still young, with many questions unanswered. But it may change how people conceive of the floral world, and provide new ways of raising productivity on Earth’s maxed-out farmlands.

“When I was in school, researchers assumed that some plants were better or worse than others at getting resources, but they were blind to the whole social situation,” said Susan Dudley, a McMaster University biologist. “I went looking for it, and to my shock, found it. And we’ve found more of it since.”

In a paper published in the November American Journal of Botany, Dudley describes how Impatiens pallida, a common flowering plant, devotes less energy than usual to growing roots when surrounded by relatives. In the presence of genetically unrelated Impatiens, individuals grow their roots as fast as they can.

Plants Have a Social Life, Too

Science News

From BBC-Science:
Scalloped hammerhead shark
A hammerhead shark's unusual shape gives it outstanding vision, according to a study which may solve a centuries-old mystery.

Unusually warm and cold spells in climate history are linked to how oceans responded to temperature changes, a study says.

Click to reveal

Cop News

Schwarzenegger: A Tax Deadbeat

If you've been following the adventures of the California governator, you've been discovering that not only are he and his wife serial traffic scofflaws, but apparent tax dodgers as well.

Here's the latest:
The United States government might have a bigger budget to work with -- if one bodybuilding governor would pay the back taxes it appears he never got around to paying.

According to documents filed in L.A. County Superior Court, Arnold Schwarzenegger owes the IRS $39,047 from 2004 and $40,016 from 2005.

In total the Guv owes $79,064.00 ... and as we all know, he's definitely not saving the money for rainy day traffic violations.

An official at the L.A. County Recorder's Office said their system shows the lien is still active.

Unusual Holidays and Celebrations

Today is:

Buy Nothing Day,
Flossing Day,
Maize Day,
Sinkie Day

as well as

Yawn Arafat

Daily Almanac

Today is Friday, Nov. 27, the 331st day of 2009.

There are 34 days left in the year.

Today In History November 27

Our Readers

Some of our readers today have been in:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Derby, England, United Kingdom
Maribor, Maribor, Slovenia
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Dortmund, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Copenhagen, Kobenhavn, Denmark
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Vancouver, British Columbia

as well as Scotland, and the United States

Daily Horoscope

Today's horoscope says:

Ready to let loose and have some real fun?
Good, because the universe is willing to help.
Right now the stars are anything but short on creative ways to enjoy the company of others -- and they just so happen to have set up shop in your house of entertaining.
How about having the whole crew over to your place for pizza, movies and games?
Break out Pictionary and stay up late laughing.
You owe it to yourself.