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.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Daily Ha Ha

What's the national anthem of Puerto Rico?

"Attention K-Mart shoppers..."

The repugicans are actually trying to cut off funds to troops in Iraq and Afghanistan

That's just suicidal.
Not only that it's treason.
Not to mention stupid, idiotic, moronic, insane ...

Drunk Man Insists On Paying $72 For Taco

Employees at a Taco Bell restaurant in Ohio said an apparently intoxicated man insisted on paying $72 for a single taco.

Drunk Man Insists On Paying $72 For Taco

Eatery Offers Discounts For Tattooed

An Ohio restaurant said it is offering a 25 percent lifetime discount to anyone who gets a tattoo of the eatery's signature dish -- a grilled cheese sandwich.

Eatery Offers Discounts For Tattooed

Boom time ends for holiday

Boom time ends for holiday

Kwanzaa is a mainstream holiday, but many African Americans see it as irrelevant.

Study reveals happiest states in U.S.

Study reveals happiest states in U.S.

Sunshine states Hawaii and Florida are in the top 5, but No. 1 may surprise you.

'Nuff Said.

'Nuff Said.

The economy is so bad ...

From Bits and Pieces:

The economy is so bad that I got a pre-declined credit card in the mail.

The economy is so bad I ordered a burger at McDonalds and the kid behind the counter asked, “Can you afford fries with that?”

The economy is so bad that CEO’s are now playing miniature golf.

The economy is so bad if the bank returns your check marked “Insufficient Funds,” you call them and ask if they meant you or them.

The economy is so bad Hot Wheels and Matchbox stocks are trading higher than GM.

The economy is so bad McDonalds is selling the 1/4 ouncer.

The economy is so bad parents in Beverly Hills fired their nannies and learned their children’s names.

The economy is so bad a truckload of Americans was caught sneaking into Mexico.

The economy is so bad Motel Six won’t leave the light on anymore.

The economy is so bad Exxon-Mobil laid off 25 Congressmen.

Visa cuts off merchants over Web scams

Visa cuts off merchants over Web scams

Swindlers who duped customers into costly monthly charges will no longer receive payments.

Swine flu strikes NFL team

Swine flu strikes NFL team

The St. Louis Rams cancel practice due to confirmed cases of the H1N1 virus.

The best deals on 'free shipping day'

The best deals on 'free shipping day'

Hundreds of retailers are waiving shipping fees for online purchases that are made today.

Florida man exonerated after 35 years

Florida man exonerated after 35 years

James Bain spent more time in prison than any other inmate freed on DNA evidence.

Relic lifted from Cleopatra's underwater city

Relic lifted from Cleopatra's underwater city

A 9-ton monument that lay submerged for centuries in the queen's palace is about to get a new life on land.

The truth about car maintenance

The truth about car maintenance

Find out when to change the oil, how much to inflate tires, and what to avoid when washing your car.

People making six-figure incomes on Etsy

People making six-figure incomes on Etsy

Yokoo Gibran quit her day job and now makes $140,000 a year selling knitwear online.

Woman abandoned as baby finds rescuers

Woman abandoned as baby finds rescuers

Twenty years after two teens discovered a newborn girl, they receive a surprising message.



Underwater eruption caught on camera

Lava erupting from a volcano on the ocean floor has been captured on video for the first time.

Stepdad confesses to sticking 42 needles in boy

The stepfather of a 2-year-old boy found with 42 needles in his body has confessed to jabbing them into the toddler as part of a religious ritual, Brazilian police said Thursday.

Full Story

Top drug cartel leader killed

Arturo Beltran Leyva, the leader of one of Mexico's top drug cartels, died in a shootout with navy personnel, the government-run news agency reported.

Russian bank rejects loan over smiley face signature

A Russian man was turned down for a loan from his bank in Moscow after he used a smiley face symbol for his signature on the paperwork.

Full Story

Mary And Joseph In Bed Spark Anger In New Zealand

Some people need a life ... badly!
You may recall those 50's and 60's TV shows where husbands and wives had twin beds. Obviously, it was far too controversial to show them sharing a bed (Rob and Laura Petrie, Lucy and Ricky Ricardo, anyone?). A billboard showing Joseph and Mary in bed together, meant to spark discussions on Christmas, has instead sparked outrage in New Zealand.

Full Story

Then again it's just catholics.

Insurgents Use $26 SkyGrabber Software To Download Predator Drone Imagery

Anything that can be hacked, will be hacked, and pretty much anything can be hacked. In this case, the Wall Street Journal was the first to report the sad tale, that Iranian-backed insurgents in Iraq are using a $26 software package, SkyGrabber, to download imagery from the much-used Predator drone aircraft.

Elderly man charged after slapping kid over slur

An elderly Swedish man is facing assault charges for slapping a 12-year-old boy after he called the senior an "old fart."

Full Story

Research shows that dogs make our lives better

For all those dog lovers out there, this story won't come as a complete surprise, but the results are quite surprising:
New research from the University of Missouri has found that people who walk dogs are more consistent about regular exercise and show more improvement in fitness than people who walk with a human companion. In a 12-week study of 54 older adults at an assisted living home, 35 people were assigned to a walking program for five days a week, while the remaining 19 served as a control group. Among the walkers, 23 selected a friend or spouse to serve as a regular walking partner along a trail laid out near the home. Another 12 participants took a bus daily to a local animal shelter where they were assigned a dog to walk.

To the surprise of the researchers, the dog walkers showed a big improvement in fitness, while the human walkers began making excuses to skip the workout. Walking speed among the dog walkers increased by 28 percent, compared with just a 4 percent increase among the human walkers.

“What happened was nothing short of remarkable,” said Rebecca A. Johnson, a nursing professor and director of the Research Center for Human Animal Interaction at the University of Missouri’s College of Veterinary Medicine.
That's because dogs are remarkable.
Read that whole post.
You will be inspired.

Why your boss is incompetent

The Peter principle says people get promoted until they reach the level of their own incompetence – now mathematics proves it.

Why your boss is incompetent

Five laws of human nature

Why is there always so much work to do?
Will I become immortal?
There are laws to answer such questions – examine the evidence for them.

Five laws of human nature

Arise, Neanderthal brother

The publication of the Neanderthal genome sequence is imminent, so we may finally be able to determine if they interbred with our ancestors.

Arise, Neanderthal brother

Science News

From BBC-Science:

The discovery a "central character in the story of human evolution" is named the scientific breakthrough of 2009.

The coldest place in the Solar System yet measured by a spacecraft has been found to be on our Moon.
Cross River gorilla Rare Cross River gorilla filmed
Click to reveal

Mercury Messenger, Johns Hopkins Experts put together best ever atlas of Mercury - the 'iron planet'


Astronomers Find Super-Earth Using Amateur, Off-the-Shelf TechnologyGJ1214b

Full Story

Scientists crack 'entire genetic code' of cancer

Scientists have unlocked the entire genetic code of two of the most common cancers - skin and lung - a move they say could revolutionize cancer care.

Full Story

Astonishing rare images of a sperm whale feasting on a giant squid

They are creatures of the deep immortalized in fictional bestsellers like Herman Melville's novel Moby Dick and Jules Verne's 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

But these ultra-rare images of a colossal sperm whale feeding on a giant squid are the real thing.

The captivating pictures show adult sperm whales feasting on a rare giant squid. Though the squid looks small beside the enormous whales, it is thought to be an incredible eight to ten meters long.

Sea-fight: A female sperm whale with a giant squid in her mouth. Her calf follows her closely, and another whale is pictured behind her, in this rare image taken in the seas of Japan earlier this month

Sea-fight: A female sperm whale with a giant squid in her mouth. Her calf follows her closely, and another whale is pictured behind her, in this rare image taken in the seas of Japan earlier this month

Bengals Chris Henry dies after falling out of pickup in domestic dispute

Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chris Henry has died, one day after falling out of the back of a pickup truck in what authorities described as a domestic dispute with his fiancee.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police said Henry died at 6:36 a.m. Thursday. Henry was 26.

Henry was rushed to the hospital Wednesday after being found on a residential road. Police said the dispute began at a home about a half-mile away, and Henry jumped into the bed of the pickup truck as his fiancee was driving away from the residence.

Police said at some point when she was driving, Henry "came out of the back of the vehicle." They wouldn't identify the woman, and no charges were immediately filed.

Police spokeswoman Rosalyn Harrington said homicide detectives have been assigned to the case but had no further information. Police have not released the 911 tapes, and Harrington wouldn't say if the woman was present at the scene when police arrived.

Henry is engaged to Loleini Tonga, and the couple has been raising three children. Tonga's MySpace page identifies herself as "Mrs. C. Henry" and has a picture of her next to a person who appears to be Henry. She also has a post from Tuesday talking about buying wedding rings. A neighbor said Wednesday that the Tonga family owns the home where police say the incident began. Charlotte is home to his fiancee's parents.

Henry was away from the team after breaking his left forearm during a win over Baltimore on Nov. 8. He had surgery and was placed on season-ending injured reserve following the game.

Throughout his career, his temper and poor decisions got him in trouble.

He was ejected from a game and suspended for another at West Virginia, where former coach Rich Rodriguez told Henry that he was an embarrassment to himself and the program. His reputation was already costing him — the Bengals were the only NFL team to bring him in for a pre-draft visit in 2005.

They found that his demeanor didn't match his reputation. Henry was shy and spoke in a quiet voice. They warned him that he had to stay in control if he was going to stay in the NFL. Then, they picked him in the third round.

In a sense, it was already a second chance.

"I'm worth the chance," Henry said, when he showed up the following weekend for a rookie minicamp. "I'm just happy they took me."

Henry become a vital part of the offense as a rookie, helping the Bengals reach the playoffs in 2005 with his ability to run past defenders to grab long passes. In the final month of the season, he also showed his other side, getting arrested for marijuana possession. After a playoff loss to Pittsburgh, he was arrested on a gun charge in Florida.

Henry and former Tennessee cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones became the league's two most trouble-bound players. Commissioner Roger Goodell suspended both in 2007 — Jones for a full season, Henry for half of it — as part of a toughening of the league's conduct policy.

When Henry was arrested for a fifth time following that season on an assault charge, the Bengals decided they'd had enough. At his arraignment on April 3, 2008, Municipal Court Judge Bernie Bouchard called Henry "a one-man crime wave." He was released by the Bengals the same day.

It was a jolt to Henry, who had dreamed of an NFL career since high school, when he got the NFL logo tattooed on the back of his right hand. No team showed an interest in bringing him back. His career seemed finished.

Then, Bengals owner Mike Brown — who refers to himself as "a redeemer" — changed his mind and gave him another chance.

"If you only knew him by hearsay, you'd think he's some kind of ogre," Brown said, during the Bengals' appearance on HBO's "Hard Knocks" series this summer. "It's not true. He's a good person. When you see him up close, you'll find that you'll like him. He'll be a soft-spoken, pleasant person."

This time, Henry seemed determined to stay out of trouble. After only 19 catches and two touchdowns in 12 games in the 2008 season, he set about making himself a topflight receiver again. He got into top shape and worked out with teammates in the offseason, showing more resolve than at any point in his career.

Henry also changed his personal life, spending more time with his fiancee and the three children they are raising. Teammates noticed a pronounced change in his demeanor.

"He's a great kid with a great heart," quarterback Carson Palmer said as training camp started. "He's changed his life around. He ran into some trouble, made some bad decisions, and realized that. He's sorry for them, apologized for them, and has done everything he can to make himself a better person. I'm just proud of him."

Before the 2009 season, Henry got a new tattoo that matched his new outlook. Below his left ear, in flowing one-inch script, was the world "Blessed."

"I kind of felt like I dug myself out of the hole and started doing the right things," Henry said in an interview with The Associated Press as training camp opened. "People say, 'How you feeling now Chris? You doing all right?' I just tell them I'm blessed. That's why I got it."

He caught a touchdown pass in each of Cincinnati's four preseason games. A thigh injury slowed him early in the season, and he had 12 catches for 236 yards — his 19.7-yard average per catch leads the team — when he broke his left arm during a win over Baltimore on Nov. 22, ending his season.

When he showed up in the locker room for the first time since surgery to fix the fracture, Henry sounded confident he could get through the latest setback.

"It just comes with time, you know?" he said. "I learned to handle all situations, so I'll be all right."

King Henry II's Mistress Died From Drinking Too Much Gold

A British medical journal has published findings saying a mistress of 16th-century French King Henry II may have died from consuming too much drinkable gold.

When French experts dug up the remains of Diane de Poitiers [no relation to Sidney Poitier] last year, they found high levels of gold in her hair. Since she was not a queen and did not wear a crown, scientists said it was hard to see how jewelry could have contaminated her hair and body.

Experts now say that the popularity of drinkable gold — believed to preserve youth — in the French court makes it very likely de Poitier's beauty elixir ultimately killed her. The findings were published Thursday in British medical journal BMJ.

Despite being two decades older than King Henry, de Poitiers was one of his favorites.

eBay and Craigslist Go After Each Other in Court

Ecommerce giant eBay Inc. (EBAY) said Thursday it had proven its case against online classified-ads site Craigslist, saying Craigslist made claims it couldn't prove during a two-week trial about the relationship between the two companies.

"Throughout the trial, Craigslist lawyers and their witnesses repeatedly attempted to divert attention from Craiglist's unlawful actions by slinging mud at eBay's witnesses, raising irrelevant information about eBay's business activities, and claiming that eBay made undocumented promises, promises that Craigslist admitted in testimony could never be enforced in any court," eBay deputy general counsel Mary Huser said in a statement.

Craigslist representatives did not immediately respond to requests for comment for this story.

Huser made her comments after the companies wrapped up testimony in a Delaware Chancery Court trial over the size of eBay's investment in the online classified-ads leader. A ruling is not expected until the spring, Huser said.

EBay has alleged in its lawsuit that Craigslist unfairly diluted eBay's 28% stake in the classified-ads company to less than 25% through a "self-dealing" and secret scheme to issue more stock. EBay, which says the dilution caused it to lose its right to elect a Craigslist board member, has asked the court to restore its interest in Craigslist to the terms of their 2004 agreement.

"We believe the evidence shows that Craigslist's board and controlling shareholders improperly diluted eBay's holding in Craigslist when they adopted measures--including a poison pill, staggered board, and right of first refusal--that diluted eBay's stockholdings," Huser said.

Craigslist argued, and has charged in a separate lawsuit in California, that eBay improperly used confidential data to launch a competing Web site called Kijiji.com. Top executives from both companies, including former eBay Chief Executive Meg Whitman, as well as Craigslist founder Craig Newmark, sparred over the extent to which eBay made Craigslist aware of its intentions.

In early afternoon trading Thursday, eBay shares were down 0.6% at $22.75.

4-year-old suspended for long hair


4-year-old suspended for long hair

A Texas school segregates Taylor Pugh from other students because his locks violate the dress code.

The infamous Snow, Sleet and Rain winter mix we're famous for is coming

From the "Oh, Joy!" Department:

The first winter storm of the season is headed for the region on Friday, and it is a Carolina Classic -- a close call between rain, sleet and snow.

Forecasters have issued a winter storm watch for most of the area, including Mecklenburg County.

But as a signal of how close the rain-snow-sleet dividing line will be to the area, the watch does not include Union and Anson counties in North Carolina, and Lancaster and Chesterfield counties of South Carolina.

For now, forecasters predict 1 to 2 inches in the immediate area, with heavier amounts of up to 6 inches along the Interstate 40 corridor in Hickory and Statesville. Amounts of 2 to 4 inches are predicted for Gastonia, Shelby and Lincolnton.

The wintry precipitation is forecast to begin Friday morning, probably as snow and sleet in most areas, then mix with sleet and rain in the evening from Charlotte eastward.

The storm system responsible for this weather is in the Gulf of Mexico today, dumping heavy rain from Mississippi to Texas. It is forecast to cross northern Florida later today, then move up the Carolinas coast and intensify during the day Friday.

Where Americans are getting richer

Where Americans are getting richer

Salaries for college grads are growing fastest in some places not known for high pay.

Unusual Holidays and Celebrations

Today is National Re-gifting Day
as well as Wright Brothers Day
On Dec. 17, 1903, Wilbur and Orville Wright of Dayton, Ohio, conducted the first successful manned powered-airplane flights, near Kitty Hawk, N.C., using their experimental craft, the Wright Flyer.

Daily Almanac

Today is Thursday, Dec. 17, the 351st day of 2009.

There are 14 days left in the year.

Today In History December 17

Our Readers

Some of our readers today have been in:

Santa Fe De Bogota, Distrito Especial, Colombia
Butterworth, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Birmingham, England, United Kingdom
Jakarta, Jakarta Raya, Indonesia
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Nijmegen, Gelderlend, Netherlands
Stuttgart, Baden-Wurtemberg, Germany
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Penza, Penza, Russia
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada

as well as Greece, and the United States

Daily Horoscope

Today's horoscope says:

Getting up in front of a crowd is easy for you today, especially since you are showered with so many good wishes before you begin.
You could be making an important business presentation, speaking to a classroom of students or making a heartfelt toast at a fabulous holiday party.
Words come easily, backed by your sincerity and positive feelings.
Everyone who hears you is touched in some way.