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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, October 14, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
New projects have been more complicated than you expected, and you might be feeling somewhat confused today. 
You can gain some mental clarity by setting aside a bit of time to straighten out scheduling details. 
Make a list of what you need to do, and then prioritize! 
Things that other people are depending on your help with should be at the top of your list today; move on to personal needs only if you have time.

 Some of our readers today have been in:
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
London, England, United Kingdom
Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan, Malaysia
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Seoul, Kyonggi-Do, Korea
Beirut, Beyrouth, Lebanon
Klang, Selangor, Malaysia
Tweed Heads, New South Wales, Australia
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Morini, Morini, Comoros
Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Cork, Cork, Ireland
Nottingham, 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 Douglas, Blythe, Stuart, Tyler and more!

Today is:
Today is Friday, October 14, the 287th day of 2011.
There are 78 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
Be Bald and Be Free Day.
Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Non Sequitur


Far-Out Friday


Greenpeace's new $33 million ship

The activist group replaces its aging vessel with a high-tech schooner that includes a helicopter pad.  

Push to switch banks

An Occupy Wall Street offshoot wants people to move cash to small banks and credit unions by Nov. 5.

Has economy turned up?

Encouraging signs suggest the public may be too gloomy.

Wall Street protest funding?

There’s speculation investor George Soros is financing the spreading movement – but he denies it.

Cleanup worries protesters

Demonstrators believe there is a hidden motive behind a temporary evacuation of Zuccotti Park.  

Photos of #occupywallst


Did you know ...

... that #occupywallst has more in common w/the original tea party than the tea party.
(Now ... that will be a shock to the teabaggers)

It's my tea party and I'll cry if I want to

Americans favor #occupywallst over the tea party by about a gazillion to one.



A new Time magazine poll found an even more positive results for occupy wall street, showing 54 percent held a favorable view of the movement, compared to just 27 percent with a favorable view of the tea party. In the time poll, just 23 percent had an unfavorable view of occupy wall street, for a net rating of +31 percent. meanwhile, 33 percent had an unfavorable view of the tea party, giving it a a net rating of -6 percent.

OK, technically it's more like 23 to one, but still, the teabaggers are in the hole (get your mind out of the gutter) in comparison to how folks feel about #ows.

So, what's the natural response by the baggers? mud slinging, of course.

Protests set to go global

Cities around the globe are preparing for mass sit-ins Saturday as financial frustrations mount.  

Syria's bizarre and brutal plot to silence protests comes to the U.S.

Pro-democracy protesters rallying in Washington this summer against the brutal Syrian regime sometimes noticed a middle-aged man with a camera who arrived in a hulking Hummer.

Now, ain't that special


New Mexico woman put ad on Craigslist to buy pot

A New Mexico woman is facing charges after police say she put an ad on Craigslist looking to buy drugs.

Bad work habits to break

If you're a multitasking mess or an office email addict, change your ways pronto.

Online degree in spare time

Enrolling in one of these flexible programs could help advance your career. 

Roadside Assistance

A man in Kentucky had a flat tire, pulled off on the side of the road, and proceeded to put a bouquet of flowers in front of the car and one behind it.

Then he got back in the car to wait.

A passerby studied the scene as he drove by and was so curious he turned around and went back. He asked the fellow what the problem was.

The man replied, "I have a flat tire."

The passerby asked, "But what's with the flowers?"

The man responded, "When you break down they tell you to put flares  in the front and flares in the back! I never did understand it either."

Car Appreciates In Value

And it doesn't even have a music system: Oldest running car sells for $4.6M.
RM Auctions has sold the world's oldest running car for $4.62 million.
The 1884 De Dion Bouton et Trepardoux Dos-a-Dos Steam Runabout was auctioned off in Hershey, Pa. on (last) Friday.
According to a media release, the price more than doubled a pre-sale estimate and represents a new world record for an early motor car sold at auction. The figure includes the 10% buyers' premium.
The car was commissioned by French entrepreneur Count de Dion and named "La Marquise" after his mother.

Eighteen Cool Examples Of Long-Exposure Photography

I don’t know about you guys, but I love photos that incorporate long exposure techniques, although I don’t have nearly enough patience to ever try them on my own. That being said, WebUrbanist has an awesome collection of some seriously stunning long exposure images that are definitely worth a click.

Drama over female footballer

Mina Johnson was set to play against Northeast Academy, but she suddenly decided to stay on the bench.



Manage your life

Four secrets of optimism

Try these tricks to avoid negativity when everything seems ominous and uncertain.  

Healthy Living

Obesity in America Declines Slightly

Gallop recently conducted a poll to study the obesity rate in the United States.

The study looked at the body mass index, which is a ratio of weight to height.

The results were compared to those of previous years.

Researchers may have found a trend that suggests the number of overweight Americans is starting to decline.

Cancer-fighting snacks

Quitting smoking and using sunscreen aren't the only ways to cut your risk.  

The Plague

Black Death genetic code cracked in work led by Canadian scientists
A team of Canadian, German and American scientists has cracked the genetic code of the bacteria that is believed to have caused the Black Death.

Modern Plague Has Origins In Black Death
As the rains raged on in 1340s Europe, most of the crops rotted, leading to food shortages in a colder environment.

Crabby Road


Make products last longer

These tricks will help you put off the need to replace big-ticket items.

Why this toilet costs $6,400

After testing the luxe Numi, one man is charmed by its self-rising seat and stereo speakers.  

Marble sells fo $4,500

While many of the little spheres can go for $10 and even $200, one recently sold for a lot more.

The death of a mouse


Debris of comet approaches

The moment long feared by conspiracy theorists will likely be much ado about nothing. 

Comet Ice May Have Fed Earth's Oceans

Some of the water that covers much of the Earth may have been carried here by comets from beyond Neptune. The water in a comet called 103P/Hartley 2 is chemically very similar to water on Earth, suggesting that some of Earth's water comes from the same comet family, reports an international study led by Paul Hartogh at the Max-Planck-Institut fur Sonnensystemforschung and published last week in Nature.

103P/Hartley 2 is believed to come from the Kuiper belt beyond the orbit of Neptune. Scientists think asteroids and comets may have subsequently crashed into the Earth, transporting water in the process.



Upping the cute factor


Kraken or Krakpot?

Of all invertebrates, the octopus is considered the most intelligent, and sadly, rather underrated. They’ve been caught on video wrestling sharks to death like sea-dwelling honey badgers, using tools and opening twist-cap bottles. And according to at least one paleontologist, their ancestors may have been bigger, smarter, scarier and perhaps even a bit artistic.
The Triassic World
During the Triassic Period, a creature we call Ichthyosaur swam the seas, chowing down on whatever it wanted–it was the size of a school bus and had a mouthful of jagged teeth, and until Monday, paleontologists assumed it sat at the top of its watery food chain. But a stash of nine interestingly arranged, fossilized icthyosaur bodies discovered in Nevada have long confounded researchers, who haven’t been able to determine how they died. Formerly, it was believed the seas were shallow in that location and the giant proto-whales fell victim to an algae bloom. But evidence from the surrounding rocks indicate the seas were still deep at the time of their demise, leaving science with something of a mystery.
That’s where Mount Holyoke College paleontologist Mark McMenamin comes in. “Charles Camp puzzled over these fossils in the 1950s,” said McMenamin. “In his papers he keeps referring to how peculiar this site is. We agree, it is peculiar.” See, the bones of these ichthyosaurs are etched differently from one another, indicating that they didn’t die at the same time. But since they’re all buried together, something interesting had to have happened. And McMenamin thinks that “something” is the work of kraken.
Deliberate Burial
McMenamin believes that the midden-building and predation behaviors observed in modern octopuses–specifically that of the famous Shark vs. Octopus video, wherein an unassuming dog shark gets totally pwned by a seemingly mild-mannered cephalopod–support the theory that gargantuan prehistoric kraken were terrorizing the ichthyosaur population, “either drowning them or breaking their necks.” Suspiciously twisted necks and many broken ribs from the ichthyosaur dig seem to support the idea, as fantastical as it is. But weirdest of all is how the bones came to be buried together, and why their arrangement seems bizarre: “I think that these things were captured by the kraken and taken to the midden and the cephalopod would take them apart,” and rearrange them into what McMenamin believes is “the earliest known self portrait.”
In the fossil bed, some of the shonisaur vertebral disks are arranged in curious linear patterns with almost geometric regularity, McMenamin explained.The proposed Triassic kraken, which could have been the most intelligent invertebrate ever, arranged the vertebral discs in double line patterns, with individual pieces nesting in a fitted fashion as if they were part of a puzzle.
To illustrate, the bones are arranged like this:
That’s not even a little bit creepy.
Or is it Pareidolia?
Soft-bodied animals, by virtue of definition, have nothing to leave in the fossil layer, so McMenamin’s tentacled beast will likely never turn up even if it did exist. And this presents something of a problem for the theory, since many researchers are “highly skeptical” of his “evidence.” Roger Hanlon, a marine biologist at the Marine Biological laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, says,”There’s nothing in the scientific literature that suggests that modern-day cephalopods do anything like this.” And according to Dr. Hans-Dieter Sues, curator of vertebrate paleontology at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, the Nevada site “essentially represents a mass burial ground for ichthyosaurs in a shallow sea.” Speaking to Christian Science Monitor, Dr. Thomas Holtz Jr. of the University of Maryland declares that McMenamin’s approach to understanding the ichthyosaur peculiarities “is too many steps away from the evidence to call it science.”
But that doesn’t mean that McMenamin is universally scorned: science writers and kraken enthusiasts are rooting for McMenamin and his Triassic tentacled leviathan. Rebecca Boyle of PopSci is sympathetic, hypothesizing that “the hypothetical kraken was just lonely, and, unable to clone itself [as some modern jellyfish can], it made an artistic rendering of an imaginary friend? It seems possible, although maybe less possible [than] the imagined kraken.” But if moral support is what McMenamin needs, Cyriaque Lamar at io9 has got it in spades: ”[T]he possibility of finding that which is essentially a gargantuan mollusk’s macaroni illustration? That’s the kind of glorious crazy you hope is reality.”
What do you think, guys? Is McMenamin’s idea a little too crack-pot to hold water, or is there maybe something to this whole self-expressive kraken thing?
Image 1 | Image 2

Surfer tells of standing on shark

Doug Niblack was trying to catch another wave before going to work, when his longboard hit something hard as rock off the Oregon Coast and he suddenly found himself standing on the back of a thrashing great white shark.

Animal Pictures