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.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Daily Drift

The Daily Drift
Today's horoscope says:
Someone else's business problems are not your problems, although you will have to deal with the fallout from them today (whether you like it or not).
It's very important for you to separate the person from these problems -- otherwise, you run the risk of being distracted by emotional issues.
Be careful not to get more involved than you need to.
The way you respond to things is your choice, and no one should be able to get away with questioning your motives.

 Some of our readers today have been in:
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand
Zaragoza, Aragon, Spain
Nacka, Stockholms Lan, Sweden
Red Deer, Alberta, Canada
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Rome, Lazio, Italy
Paris, Ile-De-France, France
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Gengenbach, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany
Dublin, Dublin, Ireland
Munich, Bayern, Germany
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Karachi, Sindh, Pakistan
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Athens, Attiki, Greece
Toronto, Ontario, Greece
Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Moscow, Moskva, Russia
London, England, United Kingdom
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
Singapore, Singapore, Singapore
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Quezon City, Manila, Philippines
Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Woking, England, United Kingdom
Ampang, Selangor, Malaysia
Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
Woodlands, Singapore, Singapore
Cork, Cork, Ireland
Madrid, Madrid, Spain
Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Milan, Lombardia, Italy
Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom
Manchester, England, United Kingdom
Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Hinton, Alberta, Canada
Warsaw, Mazowieckie, Poland
Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
Hanover, Niedersachsen, Germany

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 Hobart, Madera, Okemos, Waukegan and more!

Today is:
Today is Thursday, November 17, the 321st day of 2011.
There are 44 days left in the year.

Today's unusual holiday or celebration is:
There isn't one.
Don't forget to visit our sister blog!

Non Sequitur


Thorough Thursday


Homes with mountain views

These scenic spaces take advantage of stunning panoramas with features like a terrace hot tub.  

Best winter ski vacations

With snow already falling in some places this year, conditions are shaping up for an epic ski season. 

Volcano Hotel In Chile

Magic Mountain Lodge (La Montaña Mágica) is a beautifully constructed hotel on the privately owned natural reserve of Huilo Huilo in Chile. Covered in rainforest moss and vines, this manmade volcano-like structure spews water and is only accessible by a monkey bridge.

And if this isn't sufficiently magical and surreal, outside are hot tubs, carved from hollowed out tree trunks, with ideal vantage points for wildlife sightings. A night at the Magic Mountain Lodge will cost you around $250 to $400 per night, but who can put a price on a once-in-a-lifetime experience like this?

Deadly storms slam South

Likely tornadoes send trees crashing through homes and leave locals reeling.

An 84-year-old pepper sprayed by cops

Protesters slam police tactics after an Occupy Seattle rally turns briefly chaotic.

White House shooting arrest

A 21-year-old man is arrested in Pa. after the Secret Service found a bullet in a White House window.

Probe of Mexican Zetas leads to Chicago arrests

Federal agents have arrested 13 people as part of a probe into the alleged multimillion-dollar shipments of drug money between the Chicago area and Mexico's brutal Zetas cartel, authorities said Wednesday.

Border drug tunnel found

The secret passage runs 400 yards and links warehouses in California and Mexico.

Parents Nabbed After Boy Takes Photos of Their Pot Stash

An 11-year-old boy was so sick of smelling the pot his parents were smoking took pictures of their stash and had them sent to police, according to cops.

Student catches teacher's rant

Nobody believed Julio Artuz when he complained of bullying by an instructor.  

Obama insured against crocs

The president's latest overseas adventure comes with some unusual perks.

The Greatest Liberals in American History

And, boy, is it going to chaff some repugican ass when they realize just who the greatest Liberals are!

Millionaires: Raise our taxes!

A group of wealthy Americans urges lawmakers to end financial breaks for high earners.  

There were repugican members of Congress involved in O’Keefe NPR sting

In Howie Kurtz's new piece on the Daily Beast, one of James O'Keefe's former colleagues in deception suggests that O'Keefe was coordinating his NPR undercover sting with members of Congress, as it was intended to influence NPR's budget battle on the Hill:
But Templar says O’Keefe told him the video had to be released within three days because he was in touch with sources in Congress and a vote was about to be taken on a budget resolution that could eliminate federal funding of NPR. O’Keefe said he had been assured that "this story would push it over the edge,” according to Templar.
Which members of Congress were involved in something this dirty?

Ok, so how is raising the Medicare age not a tax hike?

We're sorry, but if the repugicans are going to call everything that costs the taxpayers more money a "tax hike" then they're proposing a historically large tax hike by trying to move the age at which people are eligible for Medicare.  A good number of us work for ourselves, or are unemployed, and thus have no choice but to buy our own health insurance directly from insurance companies.  By the age of 65, private insurance is exorbitant on the individual market.  But that doesn't matter to the repugicans.  They're happy to force you to pay $2000/month to Blue Cross for another two years, costing you $48,000 more than it would have cost you to go on Medicare.
We'd call a nearly $50,000 tax hike per person pretty darn historic.  But for the repugicans, tax hikes are bad if the money goes to the government, but they're good if the money goes to their rich buddies in corporate America.

That's why the repugicans are happy to keep socking Americans for the prescription drug tax we pay pharmaceutical companies to compensate them for all the subsidized drugs they sell to Europe.  You see, pharmaceutical companies sell the same drugs in Europe for 1/5th to even 1/6th the price they charge Americans.  Then they just up the price five or six times when they sell the drug here in states, to make up for their losses in Europe.  So we make up the difference, and the repugicans refuse to fix it.  And they can fix it.  The government can simply negotiate with drug companies and get drug prices lower, at least for Medicare recipients, but they don't because the repugicans  are in the pocket of Big Pharma.  (We also could allow the importation of cheap drugs from abroad, which would also help lower prices, but again, repugicans refuse.)  So Americans keep paying their prescription drug tax, oblivious to the fact that we are literally paying six times more than we need to for many of our prescription medicines.

The repugicans are only against taxes when the proceeds aren't going to their rich buddies, who then funnel it back to the repugicand in contributions.

Airline passengers told to pay for fuel

Airlines have already begun charging for food, drinks, seat assignments and baggage.

A $500K treasure in storage unit

A California man's gamble pays off big when he stumbles across a surprise in a blue Rubbermaid container. 

Five skills job-seekers need

To get a hiring manager's attention, tell a brief story that demonstrates how well you work.

Employees Afraid to Ask Bosses for Time Off

New research reveals employees are hesitant to use their vacation time — even if they have days off to spare.
A recent Harris Interactive study found that 57 percent of working Americans will have unused vacation time at year’s end. The survey discovered most employees leave an average of 11 vacation days on the table, or 70 percent of their total allotted time off.
And it’s not because they lack the desire to take a break.
While more than 60 percent of those with vacation days believe they deserve to take their allotted time off, 39 percent of those surveyed said they had reservations about actually asking their boss for a vacation, and therefore, choose to just stay in the office.
"We were surprised to learn that almost a third of American workers feel guilty, nervous or stressed when asking for a day off of work," said Grant McCarthy, director of JetBlue Getaways.
The survey also showed that 41 percent of those who do take vacation time take off at least a week at a time. That isn’t surprising, the average employee reports needing at least six consecutive days off to truly unwind.



The cardiologist and the Harley mechanic

Bike mechanicA motorcycle mechanic was removing a cylinder-head from the motor of a Harley-Davidson when he spotted a well-known cardiologist in his shop.

The cardiologist was there waiting for the service manager to come and take a look at his bike when the mechanic shouted across the garage, ‘Hey Doc, want to take a look at this?’ The cardiologist, a bit surprised, walked over to where the mechanic was working on the motorcycle.

The mechanic straightened up, wiped his hands on a rag and asked, ‘So Doc, look at this engine. I opened its heart, take the valves out, repair any damage, and then put them back in, and when I finish, it works just like new.

So how come I make $39,700 a year and you make $1,700,000 when you and I are doing basically the same work?’

The cardiologist paused, leaned over, and then whispered to the mechanic… ‘Try doing it with the engine running’.

How Stress Hurts You Physically

I recently tracked down the brilliant Dr. Rajita Sinha, director of the Yale Stress Center, and spoke to her about what she's working on.

How to fight headache pain

Certain exercises and diet changes can reduce the frequency and intensity. 

Seven diabetes warning signs

If your vision is blurry or you lose weight for no reason, you should be worried.

Healthy Living

Plate Color May Boost Food's Flavor

How do you make your strawberry mousse sweeter and richer-tasting? The answer isn't more strawberries and sugar. Instead, try serving it on a white plate.

Did you know ...

Pizza is vegetable, Congress says

Robotic Teddy Bear Smacks You When You Snore

Robotic bears are kind of a thing in Japan. This one is called Jukusui-kun, which means “deep sleep.” You lie on top of it while sleeping. If you start to snore, it’ll brush you across the face with its paw (claws are optional) to suggest that you stop. Watch a video of it in action at the link.

The Science of Sarcasm? Yeah, Right

Spend some time on the internet and you should became an expert at both detecting and delivering sarcasm. According to research into the subject, that could benefit your brain.
Actually, scientists are finding that the ability to detect sarcasm really is useful. For the past 20 years, researchers from linguists to psychologists to neurologists have been studying our ability to perceive snarky remarks and gaining new insights into how the mind works. Studies have shown that exposure to sarcasm enhances creative problem solving, for instance. Children understand and use sarcasm by the time they get to kindergarten. An inability to understand sarcasm may be an early warning sign of brain disease.
Sarcasm detection is an essential skill if one is going to function in a modern society dripping with irony. “Our culture in particular is permeated with sarcasm,” says Katherine Rankin, a neuropsychologist at the University of California at San Francisco. “People who don’t understand sarcasm are immediately noticed. They’re not getting it. They’re not socially adept.”
Bless their hearts. This article from Smithsonian looks at various studies and what they tell us about how we use, misuse, and abuse sarcasm.

Mystery asteroid may be Earth's baby sister

The origin of the asteroid Lutetia may have been solved, scientists say, and the new information could help them understand how Earth was formed.

Mysterious grids explained

Symbols that sparked wild speculation aren't messages to aliens or a street map of D.C., an expert says. 

A 17th century shipwreck found off Swedish coast

A shipwreck discovered in the murky waters of the Baltic Sea is believed to be a legendary 17th century warship whose captain went down with it in battle rather than …


For reasons beyond our control B.C. is not available today so instead we present Dilbert's latest:

Butterfly Scales & Beard Hair:

Antique Slides Reveal Obsession with Science
A miniature photograph of the moon, beard hairs whose owner has been dead for centuries, a shaving of Egyptian mummy bone, flowerlike patterns constructed from butterfly …

Bacterial 'Vampires' Suck Life Out of Other Microbes

I want to suck your … bacteria?

A "vampire" bacteria species, which survives solely by sucking the life out of other bacteria, has had its genome sequenced, revealing …

Newly discovered 'alien' sea worms ride the current

When certain species of deep-sea worms want to go for a trip, they dump ballast sand and sediment from their guts and catch a ride on an ocean current.
That is the conclusion of a new study of deep-sea worms called enteropneusts, a mysterious and little-understood group of organisms. These delicate, gelatinous worms were once thought to be mostly shallow-water animals, but the new observations reveal almost a dozen species living on the seafloor as deep as 12,972 feet (3,954 meters).

Animal Pictures