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.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
Get ready to have a very fulfilling day.
One of your hard efforts is about to start paying off, or one of your most ambitious plans is about to be put into action.
Results may be coming in slowly, but they are coming in -- and they are good, so don't be disheartened if you aren't quite where you want to be at the end of the day.
Things are looking up, and you are gaining momentum as every minute ticks by.
This is the day you have been working for.

Some of our readers today have been in:
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
London, England, United Kingdom
Moscow, Moskva, Russia
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Makati, Manila, Pilippines
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

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 West Chester, Monroe Township, Aloha, Asheville and more.

Today is:
Today is Sunday, June 19, the 170th day of 2011.
There are 195 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holidays or celebrations are:
Garfield the Cat Day
World Sauntering Day.

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Zor and Zam

'Nuff Said!

Non Sequitur


Fine weather we're having ...

From the "Yippee!" Department

A heat wave is expected to build Sunday into the middle of next week, with high temperatures probably approaching 100 degrees Tuesday and Wednesday.

After Saturday's thunderstorms maybe the heat ain't such a bad thing?!

Obama Pledges $250 Million for Smart Grid Loans

The White House announced plans for $250 million in smart-grid technology grants, as well as projects intended to give people better access to energy consumption data.

The underside of art

Pilot project under NoDa bridge could pave the way for murals on other city rights of way.
Artist William Puckett works on the Matheson Bridge Mural project, called a radical idea for Charlotte. It marks the first time an underpass has been lent for a mural. 

Library of Congress to get rare map of flat earth

An Oregon man has given the Library of Congress a rare and unusual gift: a 120-year-old map supporting the theory that the Earth is flat.

NFL fan gets lucky request

Josh Richards was watching some Redskins practice when a player came to him with a big ask.

    Examples of a Redneck

    Jerry Clower

    Couple receive rose and thank you card from identity thief

    A rose in a vase and a thank you card is usually an expression of gratitude and thoughtfulness. But when it is sent by an identity thief to his victims, it's "like sticking a finger in their eye," as Maple Valley resident David York puts it. This is what happened to David, 28, and his wife, Jenelle, 27.

    The couple realized something was wrong on May 31, when they were shopping and their credit card was declined. According to the police report, "Jenelle immediately called her credit/debit card company, (VB) Bank of America. Jenelle was told by Bank of America that suspicious activity was found on their account."

    At home, Jenelle York checked her account online, and found several charges which neither she or her husband had made. The purchases had been made overseas to a jewellery website, Netflix and FTD, an online florist company. David York stated the purchases ranged from the East Coast to England and Germany.

    Three days later, David York opened his front door and found a black box sitting on their front step. He opened the box and discovered a rose, a vase and a card attached that read "Thank You." "We were wondering where it was going to go," he said. "We didn't expect it to arrive here. I called up my wife and said, 'Honey, I know where the flowers went. Here.'" Bank of America have given the couple a full refund.

    Laws that make you go ... uh?!

    In North Carolina ... Persons in possession of illegal substances must pay taxes on them.

    Saudi women dare to defy ban

    Saudi women begin challenge to driving ban
    A campaign to defy Saudi Arabia's ban on women driving opened Friday with reports of some female motorists getting behind the wheel amid calls for sustained challenges to the restrictions in the ultraconservative kingdom.

    Protesters band together, knowing a simple supermarket trip could mean detention.

      Surprising twist to Knox case

      A prison inmate says Knox and her boyfriend had "nothing to do with the murder" of a student in 2007. 

      Nine bodies discovered in southern Mexico

      Mexican authorities said Saturday the bodies of nine victims of suspected drug violence have turned up in the western state of Michoacan.

      Tourism rebounds on violence-marred border lake

      Coy Callison doesn't believe he's risking his life when he steers his speedboat into crystal-clear waters that straddle the Texas-Mexico border, hoping to hook a few monster bass in an area marred with drug violence.

      America's best beach resorts

      Private cabanas, open-air spas, and butler service put these gorgeous hotels over the top.

      Beachcomber told to leave driftwood home of 25 years

      A real-life castaway who has spent 25 years building his remote shack from driftwood has been told to leave because his home is illegal.

      Photo from SWNS.

      David Burgess, 63, has created a beachfront hut from the tumbledown remains of a 17th Century bark drying house, with whatever has washed up on the isolated stretch of coastline at Embelle Wood near Porlock, Somerset.

      The woodland site is almost an hour's walk from the nearest road down a treacherous path and only a handful of people know of his existence. He sleeps on a mattress made of dried leaves.

      Photo from SWNS.

      But bosses at Exmoor National Park claim they own the site and have ordered him to leave. Mr Burgess says he has no intention of giving up his Robinson Crusoe existence and has vowed to stay.

      There's a news video here.

      House Full of Bookshelves

      Are you running out of room for your books? Here’s a house design by Kazuya Morita Architecture Studio that hopefully doesn’t have that problem. Google Translate renders the Japanese text as follows:
      Shelf-Pod is a private residence and study building, located in Osaka prefecture, Japan. The client owns an extensive collection of books on the subject of Islamic history, so he requested that we create this building with the maximum capacity for its storage and exhibition.[...]
      The original image of this structure is derived from the Japanese woodcraft of Kumiko. The structural integrity against an earthquake is provided by a panel of plywood board nailed on the shelf. Initially, the horizontal resistant force guaranteed by the panels was examined in a real-scale model. Further to this, an analysis of the whole structure was performed in order to determine the placement of the windows and panels. The inter-locking laminated pine-board was manufactured precisely in advance and assembled on-site. Similarly, the pyramid-shaped roof was assembled on-site, from 12 pieces of prefabricated wooden roof panel. The completed roof has a thickness of only 230mm and sensitively covers the whole space like the dome of a Mosque.

      On The Job

      These popular fields give you the freedom to choose your day-to-day schedule.  

      Daily Comic Relief


      An On-Off Switch for Memory?

      For the first time, scientists have recreated the brain's learning process and can restore long-forgotten memories.

      How Hair Turns Gray

      How Hair Turns Gray
      We've all heard it before: Too much stress will give you gray hair. But is that true?

      Bionic Funny Bone Transplant

      Gentlemen, we can rebuild her. We have the technology. We have the capability to build the world’s first bionic … funny bone?
      Here’s the story of 8-year-old Josalyn Kaldenberg, who became the first child in the USA to receive the funny bone transplant, a landmark procedure that saved her arm from amputation:
      Just a few months ago, it seemed inevitable that Josalyn would lose her arm to the cancer that had invaded the bones of her upper arm, elbow, and shoulder. Thanks to the first-of-its-kind funny bone replacement, however, Josalyn is now back coloring, writing and playing the piano at her Woodward, Iowa home.
      "It’s just amazing what they can do now, reattaching all the tendons and blood vessels and nerves and have the arm actually work. Obviously we don’t wish this would have happened, but it’s neat to see what can come about," says Josalyn’s mother, Heidi Kaldenberg.
      "I like my new arm a lot," says Josalyn, who is fiercely proud of the 12 inch scar that now graces her upper arm.

      New sunscreen standards

      New Standards for Sunscreen Claims 
      Starting in summer 2012, over-the-counter sunscreen brands can no longer tout claims about products without testing to back them up.  
      New Standards for Sunscreen Claims

      Most annoying driving habits

      Hang up the phone and don't blind us with your high beams, these writers say.  

      The NTSB

      The National Transportation Safety Board recently divulged they had funded a project with the US auto makers for the past five years.

      The NTSB covertly funded a project whereby the auto makers were installing black boxes in four wheel drive pickup trucks in an effort to determine, in fatal accidents, the circumstances in the last 15 seconds before the crash.

      They were surprised to find in 49 of the 50 states the last words of drivers in 61.2% of fatal crashes were, "Oh, Shit!"

      Only the state of Texas was different, where 89.3% of the final words were, "Hey Y'all, hold my beer and watch this!"

      Trooper finds $2.4 million in cocaine during traffic stop

      Two men face drug charges after a state trooper said he stopped a truck in Union County, North Carolina for a traffic violation.

      Moving Tip #32


      Great grills for $350 or less

      These three models really sizzled in a Consumer Reports test of more than 60 grills.  

      U.S. wasting money on Medicaid drugs

      The U.S. Medicaid program is likely paying far more than necessary for medications and not offering patients the most effective ones available, by ignoring international evidence-based lists of safe and effective medications, according to a new study by researchers at University of California, San Francisco.

      The study, which compared the Medicaid program’s Preferred Drug Lists [...]
      U.S. wasting money on Medicaid drugs

      FDA Finds Listeria at Kellogg Cookie Plant in Georgia

      keebler cookies photo
      Photo: oskay
      If you needed another reason to skip the processed junk food, we've got one for you. You're likely aware that many processed foods are heavy on the calories and light on the nutrients. Processed foods take their toll on the planet, both in their transportation footprint and the energy used in manufacturing. And then there's the processing that goes on behind closed doors that could make you very, very sick.
      Article continues: FDA Finds Listeria at Kellogg Cookie Plant in Georgia

      Culinary DeLites

      One cheeseburger weighs in at 1,370 calories, with 70% of an entire day's worth of sodium.  



      Mars Moon Phobos Sails by Jupiter

      Mars Moon Phobos Sails by Jupiter
      Think the lunar eclipse was cool? 
      Well, check out the view from Europe's Mars Express, which is the only known witness to a recent eclipse of Jupiter by the Martian moon Phobos.

      Hyperactive comet photographed by NASA

      Scientists now have close-up pictures of a hyperactive comet that seems to be spewing water.

      Sperm whale

      The mighty sperm whale is a multiple record-breaker. It is the largest of the toothed whales with some males reaching 20 metres in length. Its enormous box-like head with left-sided blow hole contains the biggest brain of any living animal. It is also the deepest diving mammal, reaching depths of 3,000 metres (nearly two miles) although the average dive is between 300 and 600 metres. These dives can last for a couple of hours before the whale has to come up for breath. A sperm whale’s ability to echolocate may aid in its hunt for giant squid and octopus. It makes clicks by blowing air that are among the loudest sounds made by any animal, possibly loud enough to stun prey. Sperm whales are found in all the world's oceans in tropical to sub-polar waters.

      Via BBC-Nature

      Are We Headed for a New Ice Age?

      Recent news reports about a predicted decline in the sun’s magnetic activity pose the question, asking if the earth will be cooling off because of it. Let’s ask the Bad Astronomer, Dr. Phil Plait.
      The answer — spoiler alert! — is almost certainly “no”. I want to make sure that’s clear, because I will bet essentially any amount of money that some climate change denial sites will run with this story and claim that we don’t need to worry about global warming. That’s baloney, and what follows is why. The reasons take a minute to explain, but of course that’s where the cool stuff (haha!) is. So let’s take this one step at a time. And if you have the attention span of an E. coli bacterium, you can skip down to the conclusion section.
      What follows is a pretty comprehensive but simply written explanation of the sun’s magnetic cycle and its effect on Earth’s temperature.

      Kenya Supersizes Wildlife Corridors to Provide Safe Passage for Elephants

      african elephants kenya photo
      Elephants in Kenya. Photo: Nicolas Barcet / Creative Commons.
      Compared to planting "bee roads" or building tunnels for toads, the task conservation groups took on in Kenya was a gargantuan one: Creating Africa's first dedicated elephant underpass, part of a 14-kilometer-long wildlife corridor for the world's largest land animals.
      Article continues: Kenya Supersizes Wildlife Corridors to Provide Safe Passage for Elephants

      'Iron Age' dwelling found on island

      Archaeologists have discovered evidence of a permanent settlement which could date back to the Iron Age on one of Europe's most inhospitable islands.



      The Dinosaurs Song

      Cool Beans!

      Six-foot python found atop garbage truck

      The driver of a garbage truck found a 6-foot Burmese python on its roof after he emptied a trash bin into the truck at a Cincinnati fast-food restaurant.

      The Green Anaconda Song

      All green and shit!

      ‘Lost’ bats found breeding on Scilly

      A University of Exeter biologist has discovered a ‘lost’ species of bat breeding on the Isles of Scilly (UK). A pregnant female brown long-eared bat is the first of its species to be found on the islands for at least 40 years. It was discovered by Dr Fiona Mathews [...]

      Animal Pictures