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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.

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
A platonic relationship has been slowly growing into a more important part of your life -- and it's been enabling you to see things from a more balanced perspective.
Today you'll see that this relationship might be a permanent feature of your life, and this commitment may intimidate you.
You're ready for the responsibility, but you might be uncomfortable with the terms.
Take your time and go slowly -- just see how it goes.
Nothing is written in stone.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Berne, Bern, Switzerland
London, England, United Kingdom
Cork, Cork, Ireland
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Brussels, Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest, Belgium
Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany
Mumbai, Maharshtra, India
Gengenbach, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Milan, Lombardia, Italy
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Graz, Steiermark, Austria
Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Birmingham, England, United Kingdom
Bilbao, Pais Vasco, Spain
Vevey, Vaud, Switzerland
Seou, Kyonggi-Do, Korea
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Warsaw, Mazowieckie, Poland
Burghausen, Bayern, Germany
Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
Bandar Seri Begawan Brunei and Muara, Brunei Darussalam
Stoke On Trent, England, United Kingdom
Tegucigalpa, Tegucigalpa, Honduras
London, Ontario, Canada
Leicester, England, United Kingdom

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 Metairie, Oshkosh, Hana, Lansing and more.

Today is:
Today is Friday, June 10, the 160th day of 2011.
There are 205 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holidays or celebrations are:
Iced Tea Day
Ball Point Pen Day.

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Blog Hiatus or Life Interupted

Maybe some of our readers noticed the last two days when we were on hiatus - maybe some even cared.

The perfect storm of events called life brought all our staff to a point where submissions to and editing and publishing of this and her sister blog were next to impossible.

So rather than a rush job of it we opted for the break and decided to tweak the format a bit to come out of the gate running.

Thank you for your patience and indulgence.

Granted the blog is a mite heavy today but it will return to its new regularly scheduled form tomorrow.

The Cracked Pot

The materials seized from the terrorist's hideout are helping the U.S. track new targets.  

As The World Turns

Former PM of Iceland charged over banking scandal 
We can't even get anyone in office charged over a war that was based on lies and is bankrupting the country. Maybe Iceland can teach us a few things about fighting corruption and democracy. Then maybe we can also go after the political class who ushered in the banking crisis.

It must be nice to see some accountability.
Geir Haarde was charged with failing to prevent the banking crisis and failing in his prime ministerial duty to manage the fallout. He could face two years in jail if found guilty.

Haarde, 60, who stood down as prime minister in early 2009, said the charges were "political persecution", calling for the case to be thrown out.

"I declare myself innocent of all charges and will do my utmost to prove my innocence," he told the court in Reykjavikon Tuesday.

Ninety-six Year Old Woman Confesses to 65-year-old Murder
A 96-year-old woman from the Netherlands, Atie Ridder-Visser, has confessed to a murder that happened 65 years ago.

More on this story:
An elderly woman's confession reveals that a cold-blooded doorstep killing was based on a huge mistake.  

    It's A Secret

    The Obama administration seizes the chance to ward off a looming threat as Yemen teeters, paper says.  

      Lunatic Fringe

      The repugicans want to make voting harder.

      A wingnut group panics some Detroit homeowners by distributing phony eviction flyers.  

      The Blotter

      Police in Lakeland are searching for a wanted woman with an unusual physical characteristic: she has facial hair.

      Man takes gun to party after his children miss out on cake and ice cream
      Police arrested a man in South Memphis on Saturday after he allegedly threatened the host of a child’s birthday party with a gun because his children didn’t get any cake or ice cream.

      Joseph Hayes, 48, was arrested late on Saturday night and was charged with aggravated assault. According to a police affidavit, Hayes became upset and began yelling at the victim because “Y’all didn’t save my kids no damn ice cream and cake.”

      Hayes then left the party and went to his apartment. He returned with a small black handgun tucked into the back of his pants, approached the host, lifted up his shirt and said, “I ain’t scared to go to jail, just take care of my kids."

      The host then called police and said she was in fear of her life. After being arrested, Hayes told police that he did not take a gun to the party, just an object that looked like one when tucked in his pants. Hayes’ bond is set at $30,000.

      12-year-old Youngest in U.S. to Get Life in Prison, for Killing Brother
       At just 12 years of age, Cristian Fernandez could become the youngest person in America to be sentenced to life in prison after being the youngest person in Florida to be charged with first-degree murder for killing his 2-year-old brother in their Jacksonville, Florida home.
      Oregon man cited for driving electric bike without license

      When Paul McClain had his driver's license suspended for driving a car without insurance, the 41-year-old Oregon man started riding an electric bicycle instead.

      This is America

      Pomander Walk:
      The Old English Street in the Heart of New York City
      Pomander Walk is a little neighborhood on Manhattan that was designed to look like an London street composed of Tudor-era houses. Inspired by a popular 1910 play called Pomander Walk, it was built by a somewhat eccentric nightclub owner in 1921:
      Named Pomander Walk (of course!), this little alley way goes unnoticed by most everyone not previously aware of its location. From the main street (see the 94th Street view here and the 95th Street view here), most passersby would walk by without ever thinking that this picturesque little mini-village exists in the Big Apple.
      The houses are tiny. Each is divided into two one-floor apartments; each apartment measures roughly 700 square feet. By necessity, some have kitchenettes (instead of full kitchens), using a closet to house the refrigerator. And some of the houses have external dumbwaiters, designed (most likely) as makeshift garbage chutes.
      These highways and byways feature stunning sunsets, ocean views, and city skylines.


        We Love To Fight!
        The U.S. has so much extra money lying around, that we can easily afford to spend more on military that the next 17 countries combined.
        Default template
        Source: The Economist.

        Funniest People

        Ha-ha! Americans rated most hilarious in global poll.
        rofl The Germans have been voted the world's "least funny nationality" in a global poll, which names Americans the funniest overall and the Spanish the most amusing Europeans, ahead of the Italians and French.
        The social network and dating website Badoo.com asked 30,000 people across 15 countries to name both the "funniest," or best at making people laugh," and "the least funny" nationality.
        Americans took the funniest prize, followed by the Spanish in second and Italians in third.
        The voting for "least funny" nationality confirmed the view of American novelist Mark Twain that "a German joke is no laughing matter."
        The Germans won comfortably, ahead of the Russians and Turks.
        Related (from 2001): Europe's funniest nation revealed.
        Internet research into international humour has discovered that Germans laugh the most.
        The stereotypically straight-laced image of the Germans has been bucked by a psychological study looking at what makes people laugh.
        Conclusion: Germans laugh at Americans.

        Eyewitness To History

        The - I dos' that shaped the region
        A return to romance, colonial Mecklenburg County style, took place Saturday, June 4, as Historic Rural Hill re-enacted the June 2, 1761, wedding of Rural Hill founder John Davidson and Violet Wilson.

        You're Doing It Wrong

        A process that stymies the world’s most extravagant visitors may be slowing the economic recovery.
        The popular perception that mostly low-skilled workers enter the country is debunked in a new report.

          Things They Won't Tell You

          Nearly one-third of Americans secretly use their neighbor's Internet service.  

            Manage Your Life

            A few easy ways to boost income can help you pay off costly interest charges.  
            The median home price is just $55,000 in one Midwestern metropolitan area.
              Five factors will help you choose the education track that fits your needs. 
              Don’t let a mechanic pressure you into making these unnecessary purchases.  

                For Your Health

                What Sugar Actually Does To Your Brain And Body

                We consume an enormous amount of sugar, whether consciously or not, but it's a largely misunderstood substance. There are different kinds and different ways your body processes them all. Some consider it poison and others believe it's the sweetest thing on earth.

                Here's a look at the different forms of sugar, the various ways they affect you, and how they play a role in healthy - and unhealthy - diets.
                Swine flu 'infected two million'

                Up to two million people in Scotland may have been infected with swine flu, scientists have estimated.

                CDC: Food poisoning from salmonella up in US
                More Americans got food poisoning last year, with salmonella cases driving the increase, the government reported Tuesday.

                Culinary DeLites

                Tomatoes contain a potent antioxidant that shields your skin from sun damage.  
                  For people looking to eat better, salads aren't always as healthy as they seem.  
                  Leafy greens top the list of risky foods, but other items called out may be a surprise.

                  See You In The Funny Pages

                  Non Sequitur


                  Wizard of Id


                  The Literati

                  Shakespeare's Relative May Have Inspired Ophelia
                  William Shakespeare
                  Jane Shaxspere drowned at age two-and-a-half while picking corn marigolds near Shakespeare's Stratford-upon-Avon home.    

                  University launches degree in comic books 
                  A Scottish university is to offer the UK's first degree in comics. Dundee University said the one-year Masters in Comic Studies would be launched by its English department in September 2011.

                  The degree is built on "strong local traditions" in the comic book industry, the university said. Dennis the Menace, Desperate Dan, Oor Wullie and the Broons, the inventions of Dundee-based publishers DC Thomson and Co, were all born in the city.

                  Graduates on the course will study the impact of comics on the worlds of art, literature and popular culture. The degree programme will be led by Dr Chris Murray, one of the UK's leading authorities on comics, and editor of the Studies in Comics journal.

                  Dr Murray said: "This is a very exciting time for comics scholarship, and I am delighted to be able to offer this postgraduate course on comics. This is a unique opportunity to give this important medium the attention it deserves, and to allow those with an interest in comics to study it in detail." A PhD in comic studies will also be available to those who have completed the MLitt course.

                  It's Now Possible to Get a Ph.D. in Manga Studies
                  Quick! You must take out more student loans in order finance this opportunity! You can consider the career applications later.
                  Japan’s Kyoto Seika University said Tuesday it will launch the country’s first doctoral program in manga studies next year.
                  The private university in western Japan is well known for its manga and anime programs and established a master’s degree course in manga last year.[...]
                  The university says it has received overseas requests for an advanced center for manga research, and that the industry is in transition amid globalization and the growth of digital media.

                  Interesting Stuff

                  Top 10 Most Extreme Substances
                  What are the most extreme substances in the world? No, not Mountain Dew;  this list compiles and gives the details on the hottest, most flammable and most acidic substances known to man. One of which can melt through twelve layers of concrete.
                  What do you get when you stack carbon nanotubes on their ends and sandwich them together? A material that absorbs 99.9% of the light that touches it. The microscopic surface of the material is rough and uneven, which breaks up the light and makes it a poor reflector. Then add to that carbon nanotubes act as superconductors in certain arrangements, which makes them excellent light absorbers, and you have a perfect storm of black.

                  Tom and Jerry are the masters at tom foolery…


                  Now, That's Just Bizzare

                  Arm tattoo of 152 Facebook friends faked, a publicity stunt
                  When we first heard of this, we figured either the woman involved was somewhat obsessed with Facebook (i.e., nuts), or it was a stunt.

                  Apparently, it was a stunt.

                  The Human Condition

                  Superstitions Have Evolutionary Basis  

                  How far will you go to avoid bad luck? Do you avoid walking under ladders, carry lucky charms, or perhaps instead perform special rituals before important meetings or sporting events? If you do any of those things, hold your head up high and be proud, because researchers are finding evidence that superstitions may not be as pointless at all.

                  By adopting a belief that you can - or cannot - do something to affect a desired outcome, you're among the cadre of beings that learn. Superstition is an evolutionary surprise - it makes no sense for organisms to believe a specific action influences the future when it can't. Yet superstitious behavior can be recognized in many animals, not just humans, and it often persists in the face of evidence against it.

                  Heroes Aren't Hard To Find

                  Kadie Christy's hobby helps her save the day when her uncle suffers a seizure on the freeway.  

                    People, Places and Things

                    Ernestine Shepherd, 74, didn't begin her unexpected competitive career until she was in her late 50s.
                    The Blue City Of Morocco
                    Morocco is renowned for its colors, with its cities awash in vivid shades of red, purple, green and gold. But things are a little different in Chefchaoen, a town in the northwest nestled among the Rif Mountains. Take a stroll through Chefchaoen's streets and you'll be hard-pressed to find something that isn't painted a particular shade of blue.
                    One stunning spot in Croatia is actually 16 separate lakes, all connected by waterfalls.  

                    It's Amazing

                    Photographers are recognized for capturing the year's best after-dark pictures.  
                    Inside the ER at Mt. Everest
                    Every spring, many thousands of Westerners travel high in the Himalayas to climb Everest and other mountains. Because of them, many thousands of Nepalese work  to guide them, carry their belongings, and build facilities for the tourists -all at altitudes at which people do not normally live. Dr. Luanne Freer established a medical clinic at Everest Base Camp in 2003 to address the health issues that come with high-altitude tourism. Not only was the base camp area lacking medical expertise, but local people who worked in the tourism industry (and could not pay for care) were being ignored elsewhere.
                    The ER’s locale might be glamorous, but the work is often not. Headaches, diarrhea, upper respiratory infections, anxiety and ego-related issues disguised as physical ailments are the clinic’s daily bread and butter. And although the clinic’s resources have expanded dramatically over the past nine years, there is no escaping the fact that this is a seasonal clinic housed in a canvas tent located at 17,590 feet. When serious incidents do occur, Freer and her colleagues must problem solve with a severely limited toolbox. Often the handiest implement is duct tape.
                    “There is no rule book that says, ‘When you’re at 18,000 feet and this happens, do x.’ Medicine freezes solid, tubing snaps in the icy winds, batteries die—nothing is predictable,” says Freer. But it’s that challenge that keeps Freer and many of her colleagues coming back. This back-to-basics paradigm also engenders a more old-fashioned doctor-patient relationship that Freer misses when practicing in the States.
                    Read more about Dr. Freer and she clinic she established at Smithsonian.

                    The stunning technology reveals a world that's creepy, beautiful, and not always medical.