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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.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
Things are turning more outward with you right now -- and today will be a major turning point in that transition. 
Let your more outgoing self take the lead now, and put your energies into connecting with other people in a public environment. 
You are not going to benefit from too much introspection at this point in your life. 
You run a high risk of overthinking things. 
Right now it's not about what you're thinking and feeling; it's more about what other people are thinking and feeling.

Some of our readers today have been in: 
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Albury, New South Wales, Australia
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
Gdynia, Pomorskie, Poland
Canberra, Australian, Capital Territory, Australia
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
London, England, United Kingdom
San Juan, Puerto Rico, Puerto Rico
Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
Budapest, Budapest, Hungary
New Delhi, Delhi, India
Bonn, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany
Bath, England, United Kingdom
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Munich, Bayern, Germany
Chatswood, New South Wales, Australia
Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland

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 Huntersville, Charlotte, Pineville, Mint Hill and more.

Today is:
Today is Sunday, September 25, the 268th day of 2011.
There are 97 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
National One Hit Wonder Day.
Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Non Sequitur


Subtle Sunday

AutumnWinter is an etching
Spring a watercolor
Summer an oil painting
Autumn is a mosaic of them all.

Mt. Tambora Rumblings Put Indonesia on Alert

What are the chances the massive volcano will trigger another 'year without a summer'? 

The Wisdom in Tea

Too bad the teabaggers don't actually drink the stuff.
They drink the 'Kool-Aid'.

Sister of Syrian protester kidnapped by security forces, her decapitated body found in morgue

Amnesty reports:
The mutilated body of 18-year-old Zainab al-Hosni of Homs, the first woman known to have died in custody during Syria’s recent unrest, was discovered by her family in horrific circumstances on 13 September.

The family was visiting a morgue to identify the body of Zainab’s activist brother Mohammad, who was also arrested and apparently tortured and killed in detention. Zainab had been decapitated, her arms cut off, and skin removed.
Over 3,000 people have been killed by the government in the six months since the protests began in Syria. Events like this could well trigger a new and much bloodier phase as non-violent protests are replaced by an insurgency.

Now that the Libyan revolution is entering its final phase, pressure will build for some form of Western intervention. The US and EU countries are discussing stronger sanctions on Syria and Turkey has just stopped a Syrian ship carrying weapons.

The collapse of Assad's regime in Syria would be a major embarrassment to the mis-rulers of Iran and could even bring down their regime in a 'domino effect'.

What Putin's return means

Vladimir Putin will run to be Russia's president again, a move that will be felt around the globe.

The truth be told


Wisconsin Governor Walker's spokesperson granted immunity in corruption probe

Via TPM, Wispolitics reports:
Gov. Scott Walker's spokesman is one of three witnesses who have been granted immunity in an ongoing John Doe investigation that includes allegations of campaign law violations, according to records obtained by WisPolitics.com .

The spokesman, Cullen Werwie, also served as deputy communications director for Walker's gubernatorial campaign.

Rose Ann Dieck, a retired teacher and Milwaukee County Republican party activist, and Kenneth Lucht, a lobbyist for the Wisconsin & Southern Railroad, have also been granted immunity in matters "still under inquiry" through the secret probe, according to the judge overseeing the case.

The judge stressed that a grant of immunity "does not necessarily mean, imply or infer that those witnesses are suspected of, or guilty of, any criminal wrongdoing."

The investigation itself is still under seal. When three witnesses are granted immunity the case is likely to be something more than a parking ticket.

Senator says OnStar invades privacy

The OnStar automobile communication service used by 6 million Americans maintains its two-way connection with a customer even after the service is discontinued, while reserving the right to sell data from that connection.

Daily Comic Relief


Degrees employers want

These five college majors are especially marketable today, according to a hiring survey.  

Changed by recession

A Florida woman now looks at her home, spending, and career very differently.

How to become a millionaire

Despite a rocky economy, wealth is on the rise in a staggering number of U.S. households.  

Indian Nation

Paul Revere and the Raiders

World's hottest tourist spots

Times Square is the globe's top sight, with more than 39 million visitors a year.  

Seven Horrible Art Mistakes You Never Noticed

Notice anything strange about this picture? It might take a second, but really look. If you haven’t noticed yet -look at the guy on the left’s leg. Now try to look at the painting and try to ignore that horrible mistake. It’s hard isn’t it. If you want to see more terrible art mistakes, be sure to check out this great Cracked article, but be warned, the artworks might be ruined for you forever.

The Last Words Of 25 Famous Dead Writers

When you've dedicated your life to words, it's important to go out eloquently.


What's at the end of your rainbow?

Three Ways to Power Down at the End of the Day

Cheap shortcuts to good health

Bath / Fotolia
Staying healthy inside and out doesn't have to be expensive, just try out these simple suggestions. 

Crabby Road


Random Celebrity Photo

John Lennon and Yoko Ono

Five ways to let fall colors burst into your home

fall trends for homeIt's time to get cozy and huddle up for the cool weather headed our way. Decorating for fall isn't just for looks, it creates a comfortable vibe in your home as well. You've got your fireplace prepped and ready, now you just need to spice up the place. Fall colors are warm, inviting,…

The Gardens of Autumn

Enchanted Forest
As autumn gets underway our forests, parks and gardens come alive with a dazzling display of colour. 'Enchanted' 

Five Hearty Recipes for Autumn

Autumn foods
Don't fight the cold weather, celebrate the beginning of autumn with these tasty comfort food recipes.

Chicken noodle soups tested

Two familiar brands beat out Wolfgang Puck's Free Range Chicken offering.  

Healthy crock pot recipes

Healthy crock pot recipes (at $3 per serving!)

Healthy crock pot recipes (at $3 per serving!) 
Slow, hands-off cooking turns inexpensive cuts of meat and humble veggies into meltingly tender dinners––all without any fuss from you. So kick back while someone else makes dinner for a change. (It just won't do the dishes.)



The Ruins Of Bannerman's Island

Abandoned, neglected and decaying, at first sight you may think that Bannerman's Castle is located in Europe, perhaps a Scottish remnant from the days of the lairds or a site in Ireland forsaken by retreating British aristocrats.

Yet Bannerman's Castle, sitting blithely upon Pollepel Island is only 50 miles north of New York City, lying on the Hudson River. Its history is a long and strange catalog of disaster.

The Stunning Pillars of China

No, these aren’t scenes from Avatar’s Pandora, they are the China’s Zhangjiajie National Forest Park, which may have been the inspiration for the film’s stunning location. The drastic pillars are a result of thousands of years of erosion thanks to expanding ice in the winter. For more info on the park and more stunning pictures, be sure to visit the link.

Copper Mine Threatens Ancient Afghan Monastery

mes aynak afghanistan buddha statues photo
Statues at the Mes Aynak site. 
Photo: Nikki Diana Marquardt. Used with permission.
A decade ago, the Taliban's destruction of two 1,500-year-old Buddha statues in the Bamiyan Valley drew worldwide attention to Afghanistan's rich archaeological heritage. Now, 10 years later, another ancient Buddhist site is at risk of being lost -- not to war, but to the process of rebuilding the country.
Article continues: Copper Mine Threatens Ancient Afghan Monastery

Plant RNAs Impact Gene Expression in Mammals

Short RNA sequences (microRNA) from plants have been found in mammals, with recent news that they can influence gene expression in humans. One microRNA found in rice restricts a protein that helps remove particles linked to bad cholesterol.
Chen-Yu Zhang, a molecular biologist at Nanjing University in China, was studying the role of circulating microRNAs in health and disease when he discovered that microRNAs are present in other bodily fluids such as milk. This gave him the “crazy idea” that exogenous microRNAs, such as those ingested through the consumption of milk, could also be found circulating in the serum of mammals, he recalled.
To test his hypothesis, Zhang and his team of researchers sequenced the blood microRNAs of 31 healthy Chinese subjects and searched for the presence of plant microRNAs. Because plant microRNAs are structurally different from those of mammals, they react differently to oxidizing agents, and the researchers were able to differentiate the two by treating them with sodium periodate, which oxidizes mammal but not plant microRNAs.
To their surprise, they found about 40 types of plant microRNAs circulating in the subjects’ blood—some of which were found in concentrations that were comparable to major endogenous human microRNAs.
By identifying the function of plant RNA in gene expression, scientists can further determine how diet impacts our health positively or–as in the case of rice on cholesterol–negatively.

Australian Aboriginal DNA traced back 70,000 years

Australian Aboriginal DNA traced back 70,000 years
DNA sequencing of a 100-year-old lock of hair has established Aboriginal Australians have had a longer continuous association with the land than any other race of people.
Sequencing of a West Australian Aboriginal man's hair shows he was directly descended from a migration out of Africa into Asia that took place about 70,000 years ago.

The finding, published in the journal Science, rewrites the history of the human species by confirming humans moved out of Africa in waves of migrations rather than in one single out-of-Africa diaspora.
The study is based on a lock of hair donated to British anthropologist Alfred Haddon by an Aboriginal man from the Goldfields region of Western Australia in the early 20th century.



Bones From The Badlands Belong To New Dinosaur

Paleontologists made quite a find this week in Utah: a new species of raptor dinosaur. The ancient creature, a meat eater, was small and fast, with talon-like toes.

Diabetic woman saved by dog's licks

Stella the dog is not just Tracey Poole's loyal companion and friend - the pet also saved her owner's life. The black and white pooch has twice come to the rescue when diabetic Tracey has suffered a hypoglycemic attack. Stella urgently licked sleeping Tracey's hand to wake her up and allow her to deal with the attack.

Tracey, 41, of Pottery Road, Hoo, who has owned Stella for about a year, is an insulin-dependant diabetic. She believes if her faithful dog had not woken her up in the early hours of Friday last week, she could have gone into a coma and, as she lives alone, that could have been fatal. About seven months ago, Stella did the same thing when Tracey had another attack while asleep.

Tracey said: "She was licking my hand and nudging me with her nose. She kept nudging and nudging until I woke up. At first I didn't realise what was happening and then when I came round a bit, I realised I was having a hypo and was able to get up and sort myself out. My blood sugar was dangerously low. If she'd not woken me up I could have slipped into a coma."

Stella, who is eight, has not had any specialist training to identify the danger signs of going into a hypoglycemic attack, but Tracey thinks she has worked it out by herself. Tracey, who also has other health problems, added: "She is a Jack Russell and border collie cross, so she had the intelligence there. We are inseparable. We go for walks four times a day and we sit together on the sofa, she never leaves my side. She's a real lifesaver and I gave her a treat of a farmhouse sausage for what she did. I'm very proud of her and love her to bits."

The Most Poisonous Frogs on Earth

The most poisonous frogs in the world are also the most beautiful frogs in the world. These frogs use their poison solely for self-defense, not to kill prey, and what a good defense against predators it is. Many of them are poison dart frogs known for their use in making arrow poisons. Beautiful but deadly - it's definitely a case of look but don't touch with these suckers!

Crocodile turns bright orange after eating water filter

Owner Tracey Sandstrom, who runs Roaming Reptiles, In Victoria, Australia, said Snappy the crocodile made a meal out of the filter in his water tank. "I think it caused the pH levels in his water to soar which has led to the change in color."

She was stunned when her prized pet turned bright orange. "Snappy's pretty territorial and he attacked the filter one day and a few weeks after that, I noticed he was orange," she said.

The 2.5m croc stays warm at night in his heated indoor tank before moving outside through his "croc flap" to bask in sunshine by day. "It doesn't seem to have affected him at all. He's still got a healthy appetite, he is normally aggro and doing everything he always does," Ms Sandstrom said.

Darwin croc expert Grahame Webb examined the photos and confirmed Snappy was a picture of health.

Animal Pictures