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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.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
Not everything is as it seems at the moment, nor are people necessarily operating from the motivations you assume they are.
Dealing with relationships under these circumstances is indeed challenging, but you're up to the challenge.
Why not actively seek a little clarity?
There's nothing wrong with asking a few direct (but non-aggressive) questions to find out what's really going on.
You and the other party involved will probably both be glad you did.
Then you can set it aside and enjoy the day together.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Recife, Pernambuco, Brazil
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Caen, Basse-Normandie, France
Sittard, Limburg, Netherlands
London, England, United Kingdom
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Edithvale, Victoria, Australia
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
San Juan, San Juan, Puerto, Rico

as well as Bulgaria, Israel, Finland, Austria, Norway, Georgia, Mexico, Peru, Kuwait, Serbia, Bangladesh, Latvia, Greece, Scotland, Hong Kong, Denmark, Wales, Iran, Singapore, Poland, Taiwan, Sweden, Afghanistan, Belgium, Tibet, Croatia, Pakistan, Romania, Paraguay, Sudan, Vietnam, Argentina, Cambodia, Egypt, France, Estonia, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Brazil, New Zealand, United Arab Emirates, Slovenia, China, Iraq, Ecuador, Nigeria, Colombia, Chile, Honduras, Paupa New Guinea, Moldova, Venezuela, Germany, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Ireland, New Zealand, Czech Republic, Vietnam, Norway, Finland and in cities across the United States such as Woodstock, La Place, San Bruno, Syracuse and more.

Today is:
Today is Saturday, December 25, the 359th day of 2010.
There are 6 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is: 
There isn't one. 

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Non Sequitur


Our Readers

According to one of those rating sites Carolina Naturally has a readership level of:
40% Basic Level Readers
52% Intermediate Level Readers
7% Advanced Level Readers
Considering we strive to reach a broad audience this is pretty good news - it means we are achieving that goal.
Although that remaining 1% unaccounted for is a mite troubling ...

Snow spreads eastward; road conditions worsen

Winter Weather
Heavy snow has been falling since this morning across the N.C mountains and foothills, and forecasters predict the white stuff will spread into the area later this afternoon.
Snow continues  no significant power outages
The National Weather Service is now calling for up to one foot of snow in the mountains.

Rare Southern white Christmas

But travelers aren't so thrilled with grounded flights and altered holiday plans.  

Awesome Pictures


Rockestra Theme

Paul McCartney & Wings

Spin It On

Paul McCartney & Wings

The Bevis and Butt-Head Psychedelic Experience


Top 10 Stories of 2010

From Discovery:
Relive 2010 through our readers' favorite stories, from the weirdest to the coolest.

Ohio museum to return German item stolen in WWII

In this undated photo released by the Toledo Museum of Art, "Nereid Sweetmeat Stand" is shown.

Thief Digs Through Wall For Artwork

The person who tunneled through a wall into a New York City apartment while the owner was away around Thanksgiving and made off with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of artworks by Andy Warhol and other notable artists.



Hidden cash in your attic

Here’s how to get the most when unloading collectibles, books, and clothes.  

Grab energy tax credits soon

Generous write-offs for energy-efficient windows and doors end December 31.  

And I Quote

Sitting Bull

Civil War message opened, decoded: No help coming

A glass vial stopped with a cork during the Civil War has been opened, revealing a coded message to the desperate Confederate commander in Vicksburg on the day the Mississippi city fell to Union forces 147 years ago.

Did John Wilkes Booth get away?

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On April 26, 1865, Sergeant Boston Corbett shot and killed John Wilkes Booth, Lincoln's assassin who was hiding out in the barn of a tobacco barn in Caroline County, Virginia. Or did he? Some historians have suggested that the man in the barn wasn't Booth, and that he lived for several more decades under assumed names before committing suicide. Now, Booth's descendants have authorized the exhumation of John Wilkes Booth's brother, Shakespearean actor Edwin Booth, to get a DNA sample and close the books on the case. The DNA will be compared with a sample from vertebrae of the man killed in the barn. The body itself is buried but bone samples are in the collection of the National Museum of Medicine and the (incredible) Mutter Museum in Philadelphia. From CNN:
“I just feel we have a right to know who’s buried there,’’ said Lois Trebisacci, 60, who told The Boston Globe she is Edwin Booth's great-great-great granddaughter. In 1995, the family tried to exhume the body inside the family plot that contains the man shot in the barn, but a judge denied the request.
“The family was as much interested in disproving [the escape] theory as they were in proving it,’’ Mark Zaid, an attorney for Trebisacci, told the Globe...
A spokesman told The Inquirer that the National Museum of Health and Medicine was concerned about damage to the precious piece of history, just for the sake of trying to debunk a myth. But Jan Herman, chief historian for the Navy Medical Department and special assistant to the Navy surgeon general in Washington, said since only a small drill would be used, the sample wouldn't be damaged.
It's very much a case of weighing what's worth it.
"If it compares favorably, that's the end of the controversy," Herman told the Inquirer. "That was Booth in the barn, end of case.
"If it doesn't match, you change American history."

Christmas present from the CIA

Think Wikileaks is a big name?

Now it's a WTF big name

Courtesy of the US Central Intelligence Agency.

Stupid people say stupid things

But this ranks as one of the all time stupidest ...
"The armies of other nations...could allow homosexuals to serve in their military because we didn't allow them to serve in ours...We will no longer able to bail out these other emasculated armies because ours will now be feminized and neutered beyond repair, and there is no one left to bail us out."
American Family Association's Bryan Fischer

Hawaii's governor wants to finally demolish the birthers

Now that would be nice Christmas present

By David Neiwert

Neil Abercrombie, Hawaii's new governor, wants to give the country a Christmas present: He intends to finally demolish the conspiracy theories adopted by diehard Obama haters demanding to see the president's birth certificate, even after it has long been made available:
The governor, a Democrat and former congressman, said he has initiated conversations with the state’s attorney general and the chief of its Health Department about how he can release more explicit documentation of Mr. Obama’s birth on Aug. 4, 1961, at Kapiolani Maternity and Gynecological Hospital. He said he has done so of his own accord, without consulting the White House, which declined to comment.
“He’s a big boy; he can take sticks and stones. But there’s no reason on earth to have the memory of his parents insulted by people whose motivation is solely political,” Mr. Abercrombie said. “Let’s put this particular canard to rest.”
Abercrombie, you see, knew Obama's parents and met the president when he was a baby:
Mr. Abercrombie, 72, said that although he did not see the elder Obamas at the hospital with their newborn son, he did remember the couple bringing the baby to social events. He says the critics who suggest that Mr. Obama’s mother slipped off to Kenya to give birth are engaging in a “demonological fantasy.”
An L.A, Times story has more:
"What bothers me is that some people who should know better are trying to use this for political reasons," said Abercrombie, 72. "Maybe I'm the only one in the country that could look you right in the eye right now and tell you, 'I was here when that baby was born.' "

One of Abercrombie's aides said the governor is voicing the frustration of many Hawaiians who continue to be troubled by the rumors, which they see as emblematic of the view that Hawaiians are not Americans in the same way as those who live in the continental United States.
Of course, as the L.A. Times story points out, this really won't stop the birthers. But it will at least create the kind of hurdle to peddling their irrationality that will make it much, much harder to do so. And for that, he will have the nation's gratitude.

The truth be told


Tea party cancels Xmas Pageant; Couldn't find three wise men


Sixty-year-old Indian rights activist jailed for life

An Indian court has convicted a human rights activist of aiding communist rebels in eastern India and sentenced him to life in prison, his attorney said Saturday.

Indian Chief Minister's wife seeks loan to buy onions

Giving a new twist to the controversy over rising prices of onions in India, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's wife, Sadhna Singh, on Thursday afternoon applied for a loan in the State Bank of India so she could buy onions.

Sadhna Singh, Rajya Sabha MP Maya Singh along with hundreds of other BJP workers gathered at the State Bank of India, TT Nagar Branch, on Thursday morning to file applications for onion loans. ''We have received about 15-16 applications for loans varying from Rs 50,000 to Rs One lakh for the purpose of buying onions," said Mahesh Kochar, regional manager of SBI. Others who applied for onion loan included state BJP Mahila Morcha president Neeta Pateria and the party's MLAs from Bhopal.

Not just Bhopal, applications for loans for the purchase of onions were submitted by BJP workers at nationalized banks across Madhya Pradesh.

The state BJP organised the ''Onion Loan demonstrations in every district protesting against the sudden increase in the price of the vegetable. While in Bhopal Sadhna Singh, who is also the vice-president of the women's wing, and Maya Singh were asked to take the lead, Indore saw the BJP state president Prabhat Jha and the party's youth wing president Jeetu Jirati apply for the loan. ''Earlier we shed tears chopping onions, now we are crying while buying onions," Sadhna Singh said.



Bat House










The Astonishing Art Of Arcimboldo


You meet them sometimes: people who just seem to have been born out of their time, somehow not quite at home or comfortable in the time period in which they find themselves.

As far as his art is concerned, this is certainly the case with Giuseppe Arcimboldo. You might, unless you know his work already, think that the above was created at some point in the

Walkable Neighborhoods Make People Happier

city-street-walking photo
Treehugger regularly extols the virtues of walkable neighborhoods and cities: denser urban areas have higher property values and a better quality of life; they consume less energy per capita than any other kind of environment, especially the suburbs (which make you fat). Now a study from the University of New Hampshire says that living in a walkable neighborhood yields social benefits as well.
Article continues: New Study Shows Walkable Neighborhoods Make People Happier

Best places for hot chocolate

A San Francisco chocolatier serves a dark chocolate cocoa with a handmade marshmallow.  

Robot Waiters In Chinese Restaurant

The Dalu Robot restaurant, which opened this month in Jinan in northern Shandong province, is touted as China's first robot hotpot eatery where robots resembling Star Wars droids circle the room carrying trays of food in a conveyor belt-like system.

More than a dozen robots operate in the restaurant as entertainers, servers, greeters and receptionists. Each robot has a motion sensor that tells it to stop when someone is in its path so customers can reach for dishes they want.



Milky Way


Did 'Martian' methane signal come from Earth?

Claims of methane on Mars, which fueled hopes that the planet hosts life, may be premature.

Old Christmas Trees Help Other Trees Grow Year-Round in Paris' Neighborhood Parks

christmas tree recycling sign paris image
Sign at a tree-recycling collection point in Paris. 
Once all the gifts have been opened, all the feasting done, all the toasts made, the time will soon come to figure out what the heck to do with the Christmas tree around which so many of the holiday festivities have been held. Plenty of cities now have mulching and recycling programs, but it's not everywhere you can readily go and visit new trees whose growth has been made possible by the death of the old one. In Paris, you can.
Article continues: Old Christmas Trees Help Other Trees Grow Year-Round in Paris' Neighborhood Parks

Crystals With Pleats Reveal Order and Disorder

It turns out seamstresses aren't the only ones who use pleats to gather a flat fabric around a curved surface. Crystals can form pleats too, a recent study found.

Bizarre frozen free throw

The crowd watches in disbelief as the basketball appears to defy the laws of physics.  



Drunk driver with 15 sheep and 6 people in his vehicle 32 times over alcohol limit

South African law enforcement officials caught a drunk motorist with a blood alcohol content 32 times over the legal limit near Queenstown in the Eastern Cape on Wednesday.

When the motorist, driving a Mercedes Benz Vito, was pulled over, he was breathalysed and found to have blood alcohol content of 1.6g/100ml. The legal limit is 0.05g/100ml.

Five boys and a woman, who were also in the vehicle with 15 sheep allegedly stolen from nearby farms, were also arrested.

From the beginning of December 2010 to the 21st of the month, 1.1 million vehicles and drivers have been checked. Some 1500 drunk drivers were arrested, 60 percent of which were male.

Man kills mysterious creature in Kentucky

Has a mythical creature made its way to Kentucky? Some people seem to think so, after a Nelson County man came across a creature with grayish, wrinkly skin and no fur. Mark Cothren shot and killed an animal on Dec. 18 because he said he feared what it was, since he did not recognize it. He said the animal walked from the woods onto his front yard around 3 p.m. Cothren lives on Mount Carmel Church Road in Lebanon Junction.

"I was like: 'every animal has hair, especially this time of year!' What puzzled me is how something like that could survive through a winter with no hair," Cothren said. "Everybody is getting very curious, you know. [The] phone is ringing off the hook. It's kind of a mystery right now," Cothren said.

Cothren described the creature as having large ears, whiskers, a long tail, and about the size of a house cat. He says many people have tried to guess what the animal may be. He said he's heard anything from raccoon to a dog to the legendary Chupacabra. "Everybody is leaning kind of toward that - it's the Chupacabra! People have come up to me [saying] 'that's what the thing is 'cause I pulled it up on the Internet'" Cothren laughed.

Legend has it the Chupacabra - also known as the "Goat Sucker" - kills goats and sucks their blood. The fabled creature has supposedly been spotted in South America, Mexico, Puerto Rico, as well as Texas and Oklahoma. "It's hard to judge what an animal is from just a photograph," said Sam Clites with the Louisville Zoo. Clites say he would have to see the animal in person to study it and determine its species. At first glance, he believed the animal could be a raccoon or a dog, but not a mythical creature.

Beaks Transformed Dinosaurs, Expanding Diet

dinosaursThe beak was like a Swiss Army knife for dinosaurs because it provided many tools in one unit.  

High Diving Hare

Bugs Bunny

The roast of Christmas future

Tomorrow's festive fare will be very different from today's, says gastronaut Stefan Gates, but there'll be no shortage of tasty treats on offer.

From god to gobbler

Revered by the Aztecs, devoured by millions: today's titanic turkey is a very different bird to its flighty ancestors

Philosopher or devil?

This burrowing crayfish, Cambarus diogenes, shares a name with a Greek philospher – although admittedly one with a sour outlook.

But it is often called the devil crayfish. Leaving one to presume that the burrows it digs remind people of the traditional location of the underworld.

Animal Pictures