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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, April 16, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
There's been a shift in your self-confidence coming for a long time, and it's arriving today.
Suddenly you don't think you can do it -- you know you can do it.
Grab any chance you can get to take center stage and be in the public eye, because you have something to say.
Your perspective matters and people need to hear what you think.
You are capable of making big changes in your life and in the life of a close friend who's been contemplating a move.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Wedel, Schleswig-Holstein, Germany
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Nice, Provence-Alpes-Cote D'Azur, France
Doha, Ad Dawhah, Qatar
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Bangkok, Krung Thep, Thailand
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Kota, Southern Finland, Finland
London, England, United Kingdom
Kuala Terengganu, Terengganu, Malaysia
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
Berne, Bern, Switzerland
Pakanbaru, Riau, Indonesia
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Riyadh, Ar Riyad, Saudi Arabia
Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil

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 Batavia, Tampa, Rice Like, Beverly Hills and more.

Today is:
Today is Saturday, April 16, the 107th day of 2011.
There are 250 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
Husband Appreciation Day
Record Store Day.

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

President Obama's Weekly Address

Remarks of President Barack Obama
As Prepared for Delivery
Saturday, April 16, 2011
Washington, DC
This week, I laid out my plan for our fiscal future.  It’s a balanced plan that reduces spending and brings down the deficit, putting America back on track toward paying down our debt.

We know why this challenge is so critical.  If we don’t act, a rising tide of borrowing will damage our economy, costing us jobs and risking our future prosperity by sticking our children with the bill.

At the same time, we have to take a balanced approach to reducing our deficit – an approach that protects the middle class, our commitments to seniors, and job-creating investments in things like education and clean energy.  What’s required is an approach that draws support from both parties, and one that’s based on the values of shared responsibility and shared prosperity.

Now, one plan put forward by some Republicans in the House of Representatives aims to reduce our deficit by $4 trillion over the next ten years.  But while I think their goal is worthy, I believe their vision is wrong for America.

It’s a vision that says at a time when other nations are hustling to out-compete us for the jobs and businesses of tomorrow, we have to make drastic cuts in education, infrastructure, and clean energy – the very investments we need to win that competition and get those jobs.

It’s a vision that says that in order to reduce the deficit, we have to end Medicare as we know it, and make cuts to Medicaid that would leave millions of seniors, poor children, and Americans with disabilities without the care they need.

But even as this plan proposes these drastic cuts, it would also give $1 trillion in tax breaks to the wealthiest 2% of Americans – an extra $200,000 for every millionaire and billionaire in the country. 

I don’t think that’s right.  I don’t think it’s right to ask seniors to pay thousands more for health care, or ask students to postpone college, just so we don’t have to ask those who have prospered so much in this land of opportunity to give back a little more.

To restore fiscal responsibility, we all need to share in the sacrifice – but we don’t have to sacrifice the America we believe in.

That’s why I’ve proposed a balanced approach that matches that $4 trillion in deficit reduction.  It’s an approach that combs the entire budget for savings, and asks everyone to do their part.  And I’ve called on Democrats and Republicans to join me in this effort – to put aside their differences to help America meet this challenge.  That’s how we’ve balanced our budget before, and it’s how we’ll succeed again.

We’ll build on the savings we made from last week’s bipartisan budget agreement, while protecting the job-creating investments that are critical to our future.

We’ll find additional savings in our defense budget.  Over the last two years, the Secretary of Defense has taken on wasteful spending that does nothing to protect our troops or our nation, saving $400 billion in current and future spending.  I believe we can do that again. 

We’ll reduce health care spending, and strengthen Medicare and Medicaid through common-sense reforms that will get rid of wasteful subsidies and increase efficiency.

We’ll reduce spending in our tax code with tax reform that’s fair and simple – so that the amount of taxes you pay doesn’t depend on how clever an accountant you can afford.  And we should end the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, too.  Because people like me don’t need another tax cut.

So that’s my approach to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the next 12 years while protecting the middle class, keeping our promise to seniors, and securing our investments in our future.  I hope you’ll check it out for yourself on WhiteHouse.gov.  And while you’re there, you can also find what we’re calling the taxpayer receipt.  For the first time ever, there’s a way for you to see exactly how and where your tax dollars are spent, and what’s really at stake in this debate.

Going forward, Democrats and Republicans in Washington will have our differences, some of them strong.  But you expect us to bridge those differences.  You expect us to work together and get this done.  And I believe we can.  I believe we can live within our means and live up to the values we share as Americans.  And in the weeks to come, I’ll work with anyone who’s willing to get it done.

Thanks for listening.  Have a great weekend.

Violent storms slam South

Tornadoes and lightning strikes claim at least 17 lives in the season's deadliest weather.  

The friendliest countries

A survey of expatriates finds one country is particularly warm and welcoming.  

Gorgeous Brittany House Built By Hand of Straw, Wood and Earth

All Images Courtesy of Franck Deboute & Karine Montagnon
In 2009, architects Franck Deboute and Karine Montagnon decided to build their dream home and office. The site: the Pointe du Raz, hanging out over the Atlantic Ocean, in Brittany, France. The materials: straw, wood, and earth. The builders: Deboute and Montagnon themselves, along with a corps of volunteers interested in learning the techniques of low-impact building.
Article continues: Gorgeous Brittany House Built By Hand of Straw, Wood and Earth

Earth and Space Duet

Meet Cady Coleman, who is both a musician and an astronaut. Here she is performing the first ever space-earth musical duet with Ian Anderson of Jethro Tull. Coleman is aboard the International Space Station, while Anderson is somewhere on earth.

A rare glimpse into Earth's 'black hole'

Satellite images provide a stunning view of a place on Earth named for its deep, dark topography.  

The Battle for the Soul of Kung Fu

Photo: Fritz Hoffmann
In the past few decades, Shaolin Temple has become famous. Indeed, for many it is synonymous with kung fu. The temple has become an international business empire - it has built martial arts academies, funded touring kung fu troupes, shot film and TV projects.
But as it is gaining in fame, is Shaolin Temple losing its soul? Peter Gwin of National Geographic writes this fascinating article about the lives of a couple of Shaolin disciples:
On the last morning I spend at his retreat, Dejian shows me his private quarters, a tiny stone cupola perched on the tip of a sheer cliff. He leads the way out to a terrace with a view of the deep, bowl-shaped valley carpeted with thick pine forests. A weather front is blowing in, and his thick wool cape flutters behind him.
Without warning he jumps up onto the low wall bordering the lip of the cliff, the wind filling his cape so that it flows out over the void. I suddenly feel guilty, that I somehow prodded him onto the ledge, like a morbid voyeur. I hadn't consciously considered it before, but of course that's why many people come up to see Shi Dejian, to watch him challenge death. Maybe this time death wins. But standing on the ledge, he smiles at me. "You are afraid?" he asks, seeing the look on my face. "Kung fu is not only training the body; it is also about controlling fear." He hops lightly from one foot to the other, lunging, punching, spinning, each step inches from a horrifying fall. His eyes widen as he concentrates. The cape billows and snaps in the cold wind.
"You cannot defeat death," he says, his voice rising over the wind. He kicks a foot out over the abyss, balancing on one of his tree-trunk legs. "But you can defeat your fear of death."

Punt Guns

Punt guns were enormous shotguns used to hunt waterfowl in the 19th and early 20th Centuries. They were so heavy that they were normally attached to small boats called punts and the boats were then pointed as birds resting on the water’s surface:
Punt guns were usually custom-designed and so varied widely, but could have bore diameters exceeding 2 inches (51 mm) and fire over a pound (0.5 kilos) of shot at a time.
A single shot could kill over 50 waterfowl resting on the water’s surface. They were too big to hold and the recoil so large that they were mounted directly on the punts used for hunting, hence their name. Hunters would maneuver their punts quietly into line and range of the flock using poles or oars to avoid startling them.
Generally the gun was fixed to the punt; thus the hunter would maneuver the entire boat in order to aim the gun. The guns were sufficiently powerful, and the punts themselves sufficiently small, that firing the gun often propelled the punt backwards several inches or more. To improve efficiency, hunters could work in fleets of up to around ten punts.
The practice faded as wild waterfowl stocks were depleted. It was eventually banned in the United States, though I gather it is still legal in the United Kingdom.



An 81-year-old man sees off armed intruder with pan of potatoes and a pitchfork

Things just didn't pan out for whoever invaded 81-year-old Bobby Smith's Jacksonville home last Saturday afternoon. In fact, you might say the robber got the point - literally - after the Korean War Navy veteran was through with him. Smith and his caregiver used a pan full of fried potatoes and a pitchfork to drive the attacker away. Smith said he wasn't scared. "I was angry; I was upset; and I was as mad as all outdoors,"

Smith said. "If I'd had my gun, like I normally would have, I would have shot him because he was in my home. I don't like people hurting my family or my home." Smith was working in the garden of his longtime home on Phoenix Avenue about 11 a.m. when his 65-year-old caretaker, Luvina Sones, ran out and said someone at was in the house. Smith walked into the kitchen and found a man next to the stove with a plastic bag with Smith's "JEA money" and the couple's ID cards in one hand, a gun in the other.

The man told Smith to "gimme what you got" before shoving him to the ground and taking his wallet, according to the police report. That didn't stop Smith, who said he "went back after him." He grabbed the nearest weapon, while Sones grabbed for something else to give him. "I grabbed the frying pan and hit him upside the head. I knocked his teeth out ... and he went to the floor," Smith said. "There was a pitchfork about six feet away. ... I stuck him."

Hit in the head and stuck in the side, the intruder ran, "bleeding on the way out." He left his white baseball cap behind. Police searched the area, and the K-9 dog ultimately returned with a gift. "The cop brought the K-9 back to the porch, and the dog had the wallet in his mouth," Smith said. "He bowed. The dog bowed." Smith said an officer told him he'd never seen anyone fight someone with "a pitchfork and a pan of potatoes."

Non Sequitur


Bold claims fact-checked

Bold statements about the deficit and a suspicious archaeological find are put to a truth test.

Why is Tax Day April 18th, instead of the 15th?

Tax formsTraditionally, Tax Day in the United States falls on April 15 unless that day happens to be on a Saturday, Sunday or federal holiday. In 2011, April 15 meets none of those criteria — it falls on a Friday, and there’s no federal holiday that day.
So what’s the deal? In 2011, Washington, D.C., will celebrate Emancipation Day on April 15, a day earlier than normal, since April 16 falls on a Saturday. Emancipation Day marks the anniversary of the day that President Lincoln signed the Compensated Emancipation Act. The Act, which was “for the release of certain persons held to service or labor in the District of Columbia,” freed 3,100 slaves in the District, making DC residents the “first freed” by the federal government. In 2005, Emancipation Day was made an official public holiday in the District of Columbia.
In observance of the DC holiday, Tax Day will be moved forward one business day, this year landing it on Monday, April 18. That’s the date your form has to be either submitted electronically or postmarked by for your tax return to be considered timely filed by the IRS.
IRS Fun Facts
1. President Abraham Lincoln created the IRS during the Civil War to help pay for the military expenses.
2. The initial income tax was a mere 3% tax on individuals making over $800. Nowadays the top tax bracket consists of a 35% tax.
3. When it was first created, the IRS was known as the Bureau of Internal Revenue, it wasn’t until the 1950’s that the name was changed to the Internal Revenue Service.
4. Over 229 million income tax returns were filed with the IRS in 2006.
5. In 2006, the IRS collected over $2.2 trillion, with $1.2 trillion coming from just income taxes.
6. Prior to the introduction of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights in 1998, the burden of proof was put entirely on taxpayers, meaning taxpayers had to prove themselves innocent.
7. The IRS sends out an average 8 billion page of paper every tax season. If all the pieces of paper were laid out end-to-end, it would wrap around the earth 28 times.
8. In order for the IRS to print the necessary forms and documents on paper over 300,000 trees must be cut down every year.
9. The federal government spends $200 billion per year on federal tax compliance, which is more money than it takes to produce every vehicle in the United States.
10. The IRS employs over 114,000 individuals, which is over double as many as the CIA and five times more than the FBI.
11. The United States tax systems is widely known for being confusing and difficult to understand. As such over 60% of seek professional help preparing their tax returns.
12. The average family pays over 38% of their total income to the IRS, which is more than the average family spends on food, clothing, and shelter combined.
13. The federal government spends about $10 billion per year to pay the IRS’s 114,000 employees.
14. The IRS has a whistleblowers program designed to help catch tax evaders. In 2005 they paid over $27 million to informants which resulted in nearly $350 million in revenue.
15. Tax Day, the date when tax returns must be filed with the IRS typically falls on April 15th. However, if the 15th falls on a weekend or holiday, Tax Day is moved to the next business day.

Napping air controllers

The FAA is revising work schedules after the latest incident of a controller sleeping on the job.  

A Good One




Tunisia's former ruling party members hold protest

Hundreds of members of Tunisia's former ruling party, saying "we're all Tunisians," have rallied to protest a new measure forbidding former party officials from running in elections for an assembly that will write a new constitution.

Don’t Complain About TSA

Warning: TSA security looks at people who complain about TSA security.
security Don't like the way airport screeners are doing their job? You might not want to complain too much while standing in line.
Arrogant complaining about airport security is one indicator Transportation Security Administration officers consider when looking for possible criminals and terrorists, CNN has learned exclusively. And, when combined with other behavioral indicators, it could result in a traveler facing additional scrutiny.
CNN has obtained a list of roughly 70 "behavioral indicators" that TSA behavior detection officers use to identify potentially "high risk" passengers at the nation's airports.
One of those indicators:
"Very arrogant and expresses contempt against airport passenger procedures."
So just take off your shoes, do what they say, don't talk, smile, and there won't be any problems.
But think about it. If you're a terrorist trying to get on an airplane, the last thing you would do is draw attention to yourself by making a fuss over the screening procedures.

Phone hacking scandal at Murdoch's UK paper larger than previously thought

This is going to be a very expensive problem to fix for Rupert Murdoch.

The Guardian:
A high court hearing to timetable and organize the growing civil claims for damages against Rupert Murdoch's News International heard that the new police investigation believed the scale of potential victims was much higher than leading officers had previously said.

Previously the Metropolitan police said they had found a total of 91 pin numbers – necessary to access a mobile phone's voicemail – in the possession of the private investigator Glenn Mulcaire.

But Jason Beer QC, representing the Met, told the hearing the number of potential victims is "substantially" higher than 91. "It is wrong to say that 91 is the answer, that that is the maximum [number of victims]. It may be on a bigger scale."

Trump's poll surge underscores the insanity of the wingnuts

Donald Trump's recent surge to the front of repugican presidential primary polls has been confirmed by Public Policy Polling: 

Arizona First To Pass 'Birther' Bill

Another milestone for the state of Arizona: Birther bill passes in Arizona legislature.
Both the Arizona House and Senate yesterday passed a bill requiring U.S. presidential candidates to prove their citizenship in order to get on the state ballot, making the Arizona legislature the first in the nation to approve "birther" legislation.
repugican gov. Jan Brewer has five days to either sign the bill, veto it, or do nothing and allow it to become law.
If the bill becomes law, presidential and vice presidential candidates would have to show the Arizona secretary of state proof that they are natural-born citizens. This could be either a long-form birth certificate or at least two other forms of accepted proof, such as an early baptismal certificate, circumcision certificate or hospital birth record.
If the Arizona secretary of state doesn't think a candidate has provided sufficient proof, they can keep the candidate off the state's ballot or set up a committee to determine whether the documents of proof provided meet the requirements.
Thirteen other states are considering similar bills. The ultimate goal, of course, is to have a presidential election in which the only candidate is a repugican.

About that repugican plan to eliminate Medicare ...

Bill Maher just asked Michael Steele: When an elderly ill person in a nursing home runs out of their 15k voucher by this time of year under Ryan's plan, what do they do?
Steele's answer was shocking even for the repugicans ...

Insurer denied needed medical tests, Senate finds

“I gotta tell you Kathy, I can’t keep living like this,” said Michael Fields, 46, who was experiencing tightness in his chest, numbness in an arm and light-headedness as he begged the voice at the other end of the line for help. “It’s been going on for weeks. I don’t know what else to do. I mean you know, I’m trapped here.

“Alright, let me put you back on hold,” came the reply.

Fields, who lives with his wife and son in Elkton, Md., was not speaking with a 911 operator. He was calling a representative from his insurance provider, Blue Cross/ Blue Shield of Delaware, and he was about to find out that for the third time he was being denied a crucial test to determine if he had coronary artery disease — a nuclear cardiac stress test.

A Senate investigation released Friday found a pattern of inappropriate denials for tests like the one Fields’ doctors say he should have received from the start.



Woman Ordered Lunch At McDonald's During Police Chase

I’m not sure whether the Hamburglar put her up to this, but a 64-year-old woman refused to stop when pulled over by police. Instead, she got herself into a McDonald’s drive-thru lane and ordered lunch:
Officer Courtney Vassell pulled up behind Spen in the drive-thru lane, and got out of the patrol car. With police lights flashing behind him, he told her to pull out into the parking lot for a traffic stop, according to a police report.
Spen, though, completed her food order, paid the bill, and then drove her bronze 2001 Chevrolet out of the parking lot and onto Northwest Sixth Court, Vassell said.
Vassell again flipped on his siren and stopped Spen outside the McDonald’s, where he said she "rolled her window down one inch and said she was not speeding and she would not roll her window down."

Income drops as consumer prices increase

Both are going in the wrong direction. With the dollar taking a beating plus the unstable situation in the oil producing countries, oil is likely to be at an uncomfortably high rate for a while. (Remember all of the Washington promises about planning for the future the last time oil prices spiked? Ha!) And then there is the problem with food prices going up. Between the high oil prices plus traders making their money from the bellies of the world, this too is a problem that isn't improving and won't likely improve for a while.
There's also nothing that suggests any big changes with the economy any time soon so wages are likely to stagnate, at best. All of this means more financial trouble for the coming years. But at least the richest of the rich are paying less in taxes, because that's what it's all supposed to be about, right? Any Democrat that allows the repugicans to keep slamming the middle class really needs to change parties. If they can't see this problem, they ought to pack it in and quit as well. The country can't afford such stupidity any longer.
Those trends came as real income dropped 0.5 percent for the month.

The Labor Department said its Consumer Price Index increased 0.5 percent after rising by the same margin in February. That was in line with economists expectations.

Core CPI is vindication for officials at the Federal Reserve who have viewed the recent energy price spike as having a temporary effect on inflation.

Food and gasoline rose 0.8 percent, the largest gain since July 2008, after increasing 0.6 percent in February.

Theft of Florida Vegetables by Hijackers Proves Produce Prices High

Thieves have stolen $250,000 worth of Florida tomatoes -- the most dramatic proof so far that inflation is sending commodity prices skyward.

Man Arrested For Fleeing Cops, Causing Fatal Accident

Police arrested a man who allegedly caused a fatal accident while fleeing police Friday night.

Man bites dog - then sues over police canine's chomp

A 33-year-old man who bit back after he was caught by a Phoenix police dog is suing police.

Dog teaches baby to crawl

Isabel gets lessons from an unlikely expert, while another kid is amused by his furry pal's trick.  

Endangered sea turtles dying along Mississippi Gulf


Ant Social Network is Just Like Facebook

We’ve known that ants are social animals like us, but a new study by Noa Pinter-Wollman of Stanford University and colleagues show just how similar they are to humans.
Heck, they’ve even got the an social networking system similar to Facebook!
On average, each ant had around 40 interactions. However, around 10 percent of the ants made more than 100 contacts with other ants. Further research is examining just what makes these more social ants different than the others within the colonies.
The researchers compare this type of socialization to that seen on sites like Facebook. While most people have a relatively small number of Facebook friends, there are some with a friends list in the thousands. It is these friends that act as a sort of information hub, spreading information out to a large number of readers. These particular ants are functioning as a large social hub of information.

Satanic Leaf-Tailed Gecko

Photo: Piotr Naskrecki – via LifeScience Image of the Day

Talkin’ bout the devil – here’s a picture of the Satanic Leaf-Tailed Gecko:
The satanic leaf-tailed gecko (Uroplatus phantasticus) is the smallest of 12 species of bizarre-looking leaf-tailed geckos. The nocturnal creature has extremely cryptic camouflage so it can hide out in forests in Madagascar. This group of geckos is found only in primary, undisturbed forests, so their populations are very sensitive to habitat destruction. Large Uroplatus species have more teeth than any other living terrestrial vertebrate species.
The gecko species was discovered in Mantadia-Zahamena corridor of Madagascar in 1998 during one of the Conservation International (CI) "Rapid Assessment Program" (RAP) surveys.

Cookie the Penguin

Cookie is a penguin of the species known as Little Penguin {info}. 
He is the mascot of the Zoo Bird House at the Cincinnati Zoo.

Primitive Sea Mollusc Has Eyes of Rock

That’s a tiny sea mollusk called a chiton, that lives about 50 feet below the water’s surface. It’s a pretty darned weird animal, but scientists have found something that makes it even more remarkable: it has eyes made of rocks.
"Turns out they can see objects, though probably not well," said study researcher Daniel Speiser, who recently became a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, Santa Barbara. [...]
The team realized in a lab experiment that the animal’s lenses were made of aragonite (calcium carbonate), rather than proteins like other biological lenses.

Farmer Dyed Sheep Orange to Defeat Rustlers

Tired of rustlers stealing his flock of sheep, English farmer John Heard decided to … dye his sheep orange!
The 48-year-old has put his flock of 250 blackface ewes through a harmless dip of orange dye making them so highly visible wary thieves are giving them a wide berth.
Mr Heard, who runs his livestock farm near Okehampton, Devon had lost 200 sheep over the past few years but says the orange dye is working wonders.

He explained:"Sheep rustling has become a big problem with ewes worth around £140 each. My flock roams Dartmoor and I was getting mighty fed-up with losing so many.
"My son James suggested the orange dye and although it produces some strange looking sheep it has done the trick and I haven’t lost one this year.
"It works because they are so easy to distinguish making it easier for me and my neighbours to keep a wary eye out for them. Plus the rustlers are obviously nervouse about stealing such easily distinguished animals."

Whale "Pop Song" Sweeps the Ocean

Just like humans, whales also have "pop songs," complete with music mania that sweeps across the ocean:
The findings are based on 11 years of recordings from underwater microphones slung over the sides of boats, which were collected by marine biologist Ellen Garland of the University of Queensland in Australia and colleagues. Picking out the patterns took a while; the team had to listen to 745 songs in total from six whale populations across the South Pacific over the 11-year period. The researchers identified 11 distinctly different styles (audio). Sometimes the "hit song" contained snippets from previous seasons, sometimes it was entirely revolutionary. But at any given time and place, there was only one song. What’s more, the popular song switched incredibly rapidly; it took only 2 to 3 months for whales in a given region to entirely change their tune, the team reports online today in Current Biology.
For male whales, singing is known to be a mating behavior, and Garland calls the results a "weird interaction of constrained novelty" where each whale wants to one-up the whale next to it but still feels pressure to conform enough that it doesn’t stand out as an oddball. But whether a whale primarily intends its song to impress females or to intimidate other males with its swanky style remains unclear.
Humpback Idol, anyone?

Now, that's something you don't see everyday

A horse jumping rope.

Animal Pictures