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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.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
For way too long, the misconception that you have to fit in has been dictating your behavior.
Even if you haven't realized it, you've been subtly editing yourself and altering your attitude, thinking that will get you farther.
What you may fail to realize is that who you are is defined in part by how you're different from everyone else.
Do things your own way today -- you'll meet little, if any, resistance.
Strike out and show everyone the real you.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Bremen, Bremen, Germany
Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
London, England, United Kingdom
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Martigny, Valais, Switzerland
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Oviedo, Aturias, Spain
Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei and Muara, Brunei Darussalam

as well as Slovakia, Malta, 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, Maldives, 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, Czech Republic, Vietnam, Norway, Finland

and in cities across the United States such as Lake Mary, Lake Norman, Lake Murray, Lake Mead and more.

Today is:
Today is Monday, April 4, the 95th day of 2011.
There are 270 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holidays or celebrations are:
Tater Day
Vitamin C Day
World Rat Day.
Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Something wicked this way comes

If the weather prognosticators are anywhere close tonight is going to be interesting.
Thunderstorms and winds to beat the band.
At least around these parts that is ...

Seven secrets of thin people

White and green teas have the most catechins, an antioxidant that helps burn fat. 

Non Sequitur


Libyans have a plan

Foes of Moammar Gadhafi have created a plan for a new government to lead the country.  

Libyans rebuff Gadhafi sons

Seif Gadhafi's rumored plan to remove his father from power rankles Libya's opposition. 

Captured bomber in Pakistan vows attacks

His accomplices brought carnage to a Sufi shrine, but the 14-year-old suicide bomber who was captured after his explosives failed to detonate was unrepentant.

China blocks well-known artist from boarding plane

China blocked one of its most famous contemporary artists from taking a flight to Hong Kong on Sunday and police later raided his Beijing studio, the man's assistant said.
The artist, Ai Weiwei, is an outspoken government critic and has been barred from going abroad before.
China has launched a massive crackdown on lawyers, writers and activists, ...

Two more Southwest jets show cracks

Inspectors locate subsurface cracks similar to those on the jet that made an emergency landing.  

Repugican's idotic 'budget'

The repugican's spending blueprint calls for more than $4 trillion in cuts, including social programs.

On The Job

Earning the right degree is key for finding work in the field you plan to pursue. 

Watch out for scam emails

Hackers may contact millions of bank and credit card customers due to a huge security breach.  

Tax excuses the IRS won't buy

If you file a “frivolous" tax return, you could be socked with a $5,000 penalty.  

Bank Takes Swipe at Proposed Debit Card Rules in South Dakota Court Fight

Lawyers for Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke and a regional savings and loan association are squaring off over debit-card fees in a South Dakota courtroom 1,075 miles from the debate in Congress on the same issue.

Banks spark foreclosure ire

A new report accuses lenders of engaging in fraudulent practices to create more profit.  

Awesome Pictures


Karma is a bitch ...

Wisconsin state supreme court justice David Proesser loses his campaign co-chair to his opponent.

The great repugican bait-and-switch

The 2010 midterms? 
Everybody knows what happened: disenchantment with Obama, tanking economy, soaring unemployment, tea party, Founding Fathers, jobs-jobs-jobs. 
It was a sweep! 
A landslide! 
A shellacking! 
A mandate! 
And now 1 million cervical cancer screenings every year are in jeopardy.

Repugicans call for privatizing Medicare

That's right. The repugicans are looking to privatize Medicare.

From TPM :
One of the fun little tidbits in the repugican 'budget' roll out today is here:
The substitute gradually converts the current Medicare program into one in which Medicare beneficiaries choose the most affordable coverage that best suits their individual needs. For individuals 55 or older, Medicare will not be changed (other than income-relating the prescription drug benefit): the budget preserves the existing program for these beneficiaries. To make the program sustainable and dependable, those 54 and younger will enroll in a new Medicare Program with health coverage similar to what is now available to Members of Congress and Federal employees.
In other words, privatized insurance. Note the exemption for those (voting while) 55 or older.

The Professor makes three points and counts them as two:
1. Privatizing and voucherizing Medicare does nothing whatsoever to control costs. We’ve seen that from the sorry history of Medicare Advantage. I’m sure that the Republicans will claim savings — but those savings will come entirely from limiting the vouchers to below the rate of rise in health care costs; in effect, they will come from denying medical care to those who can’t afford to top up their premiums.
2. ... This will be Obama’s defining moment. Will he stand up for the principle that society takes care of those in need? Or will he cave in? I wish I had confidence in the answer.
His third point is a word "for all those older Americans who voted repugican last year because those nasty Democrats were going to cut Medicare" — suckers!



Three from the Weird

Man in pot-stuffed wheelchair stopped at border
Authorities say a 19-year-old man pretending to be disabled was caught at the U.S.-Mexico border with five pounds of marijuana hidden under the seat of his wheelchair.

A Memphis woman who was adamant about not cleaning up after her dog in a park has been charged with assaulting a police officer, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

Girl bites officer during drug arrest
Police say a teenage girl bit an officer as she was being arrested on drug charges in Daytona Beach.

'Mini Mr T ' arrested wearing over 50 stolen necklaces

A jewellery store at the Flamingo Island Flea Market on Bonita Beach Road, Bonita Springs, Florida, was burgled and hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of jewellery was taken, according to Lee County Sheriff's Office reports. On Thursday, the store's owner, Ken Romano, arrived to the store just before 8 a.m. and noticed the glass display cases were open and jewellery was missing.

He contacted deputies and reported the theft. "He actually crawled through the rafters and snuck his way in like a little monkey," Romano said. A short time later, the sheriff's office received a call about a suspicious person at Luci Drive and Moriah Lane. When deputies arrived, they found Kenneth Rejendra Tannassee inside his vehicle at the end of Luci Drive. He was wearing 50-100 necklaces, tan shorts and no shirt.

"He looked like a 'mini Mr. T' at about 100 pounds," Romano said. Next to Tannassee, deputies spotted several white jewellery boxes. Some were open and had rings inside. Romano arrived to the scene and identified the jewellery as the jewellery stolen from his business.

"I've been at the flea market for three years and never had any issues and I just felt comfortable leaving out a few things," Romano explained. Tannassee was arrested and charged with unoccupied burglary and grand theft. After inventory, it was determined the jewellery stolen had a value of $400,329.

Father home with kids as suspects beat down his front door

A father is shocked after two men started beating down his front door when he was home with his two kids.

Child workers under fire

After two are charged with negligent homicide in a death, some are rethinking the stressful career.  

Feeling Blue


Odds and Sods

New diets for cows and sheep could reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, research funded by the Department for environment, food and rural affairs shows.

Experts in Hanoi captured a legendary giant turtle for medical treatment on Sunday, a milestone in a case that has grabbed national attention and cast a spotlight on environmental degradation in Vietnam.

Too real means too creepy at the movies

Computer animation has a problem: When it gets too realistic, it starts creeping people out.



Five industries in real trouble

For most people, the days of shopping at a record store or making calls over a landline are long gone.  

Down the Lane


Pizza chain files for bankruptcy

Strapped by debt, pizza chain Sbarro hopes to turn its business around.  

Prem Colors Too Much Like Spam Colors

It'll be known as the Great Spam Suit of 2011: Hormel Sues Over Spam Design Trademark.
Austin-based Hormel Foods Corporation on Wednesday sued Zwanenberg Food Group after Zwanenberg allegedly refused to stop using packaging that is “confusingly similar” to the packaging used for Hormel’s Spam products.
According to the complaint, which was filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Minnesota, the dispute over Zwanenberg’s similar packaging started in October 2010 when Hormel issued a cease-and-desist letter to Zwanenberg.
Shortly after the cease and desist letter was issued, Zwanenberg agreed to stop using its yellow and blue packaging design and changed its packaging to a red and white design.
I did some research, and discovered that Zwanenberg's Spam-like product is called Prem. Here's the old Prem label, next to the Spam label. If I were sent to the grocery store to buy some Spam, there's a good chance that I'd be confused and come home with a can of Prem.
I don't want to tell their lawyers what to do, but I think Hormel should be going after KAM.



Culinary DeLites

This noodle dish with turkey and bok choy is better than any Chinese takeout. 

Customers restaurants hate

Sending back food or snapping at your server will earn you a spot on the most annoying list.  



Small Town Woman

In Monowi, Nebraska: Woman is mayor and only resident, of rural town.
Elsie Eiler is the most admired person in Monowi, Neb. She is also the smartest, wealthiest, best-looking and youngest.
"And the oldest," she is quick to add. When you are the only resident of a community, every title fits.
Eiler, 77, is the lone inhabitant of Monowi, a village in northeast Nebraska. That is unique, according to new 2010 U.S. Census data, which indicates Monowi to be the only incorporated town, village or city in the country with only one resident.
Monowi had two people in 2000, the census showed, but the other one was Eiler's husband, Rudy, and he died in 2004.
This is the corner of Broad and Grant:

Working Vacation


Nazis' botched mission to U.S.

Once-secret files reveal how a plan to terrorize Americans spiraled into a bizarre farce.

World's First Cell Phone Call

And it's been downhill ever since ...
On April 3rd, 1973, 38 years ago, Martin Cooper made a phone call while walking down the street in New York City. At the time, he was the general manager of the company’s communications division. He had promoted the idea that phone numbers shouldn’t be tethered to a place, but to people. And they should be able to take their phones with them, anywhere they went.
When Martin Cooper made that first cell phone call, he did not make it to another cell phone. People didn’t have them yet — who could he call?
No, he made the cell phone call to a land line — specifically, to the land line of his chief competitor at Bell Labs. Motorola had beaten Bell to become the first company to make personal cell phones work. Cooper, you might say, rubbed it in. Think how the Bell Labs research engineer must have felt when he heard Cooper calling him from the noisy streets of Manhattan.
That first cell phone was so big that it was often described as resembling a shoe, or a brick. It weighed 2½ pounds. Cooper would joke to friends and colleagues that the calls from that phone would have to be short in duration: Who had the strength to hold it to an ear for very long?
Cooper, now 82 years old, still works in communications. And he carries his cell phone with him everywhere -but not the 1973 model.


Pictures of beautiful rainbows.

The Harshest, Most Volatile Corner Of Earth


To most of us, going on vacation means finding an idyllic location where one can indulge in favorite activities. Whether you like swimming, sunbathing, skiing, hiking or even spotting man-eating animals, there is a vacation out there for you.

But there is one holiday destination that is unlike any other: Danakil Desert in northeast Ethiopia has been called 'Hell on Earth,' but that doesn't dissuade thrill-seeking travelers from flocking there to see some of the strangest conditions on the entire planet.

The Earth's Gone Pear-Shaped

The European Space Agency has completed the most detailed "gravity map" of the Earth- the most accurate model of the 'geoid' ever produced, which will be used to further our understanding of how Earth works.



Where do penguins go when they die?

Did you ever wonder why there are no dead penguins on the ice in Antarctica – where do they go?
Wonder no more ! ! !

It is a known fact that the penguin is a very ritualistic bird which lives an extremely ordered and complex life. The penguin is very committed to its family and will mate for life, as well as maintaining a form of compassionate contact with its offspring throughout its life.

If a penguin is found dead on the ice surface, other members of the family and social circle have been known to dig holes in the ice, using their vestigial wings and beaks, until the hole is deep enough for the dead bird to be rolled into and buried.

The male penguins then gather in a circle around the fresh grave and sing:
“Freeze a jolly good fellow”
“Freeze a jolly good fellow.”

“Then they kick him in the ice hole.”

Old Milk


Human Cow

Scientists in China have created genetically modified cows that produce ''human'' milk.

They successfully introduced human genes into 200 cows to produce milk with the same properties as human breast milk.

Human milk contains high quantities of nutrients that can help boost the immune system of babies.
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The scientists behind the research believe that milk from herds of genetically modified cows can provide an alternative to human breast milk and formula milk for babies, which is often criticized as being an inferior substitute.

Golden Ray Migration

In 2008, Sandra Critelli shot this excellent photo of Golden Rays off the Mexican coast:
She said: “It was an unreal image, very difficult to describe. The surface of the water was covered by warm and different shades of gold and looked like a bed of autumn leaves gently moved by the wind.
“It’s hard to say exactly how many there were but in the range of a few thousand.
“We were surrounded by them without seeing the edge of the school and we could see many under the water surface too.
Golden Rays grow up to seven feet across and migrate within the Caribbean.

Jellyfish Lake

The Daily Migration Of Millions

Every day, millions of golden jellyfish migrate - no big surprise there. However, you might not expect them to migrate horizontally across a lake. Still, a visit to Jellyfish Lake on Eil Malk, an island in Palau, in the Pacific Ocean, will confirm just that. Yet just how on Earth did these jellyfish get to the lake in the first place?

To begin with, the body of water that is called Ongeim'l Tketau in Palauan is a marine lake. It connects to the sea via tunnels and fissures in the limestone that encases it. Even so, the lake is isolated - the golden jellyfish in the lake are different to those which swim in the sea just a stone's throw away. As you descend under the water, a new and alien world presents itself.

Animal Pictures

Pondering Life's many questions ...