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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, February 22, 2013

The Daily Drift


I love pitbulls :)
Don't forget to breathe

Some of our readers today have been in:
Algiers, Algeria
Pretoria, South Africa
Bordeaux, France
Johor Bahru, Malaysia
Bila Tserkva, Ukraine
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Santiago, Chile
Sandakan, Malaysia
Bridgetown, Barbados
Puchong, Malaysia
Enugu, Nigeria
Kabul, Afghanistan
Istanbul, Turkey
Nairobi, Kenya
Quatre Bornes, Mauritius
Ankara, Turkey
Tbilisi, Georgia
Kiev, Ukraine
Makati, Philippines
Minsk, Belarus
Beirut, Lebanon
Belgrade, Serbia
Mykolayiv, Ukraine
Bau, Germany
Tunis, Tunisia
Karachi, Pakistan
Sofia, Bulgaria
Manila, Philippines
Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Quito, Ecuador
Luxembourg, Luxembourg
San Jose, Costa Rica
Warsaw, Poland
Muscat, Oman
Jakarta, Indonesia
Luhansk, Ukraine
Cape Town, South Africa
Medan, Indonesia
Cairo, Egypt
Riga, Latvia
Doha, Qatar
Bangkok, Thailand
Puchong, Malaysia
Zamboanga, Philippines
Khartoum, Sudan
Kaunas, Lithuania

Today is World Thinking Day

Don't forget to visit our sister blog!
We have a truncated edition of CN today because we spent the day with the gang at The Hooker and will return with our regularly scheduled edition tomorrow. (Oh, and for those of a certain mind - The Hooker is a restaurant/Irish Tavern ... the full name is The Galaway Hooker although the gang and everyone else simply call it The Hooker)

Today in History

1349 Jews are expelled from Zurich, Switzerland.
1613 Mikhail Romanov is elected czar of Russia.
1732 George Washington was born in Westmoreland County, Virginia.
1797 The last invasion of Britain takes place when some 1,400 Frenchmen land at Fishguard in Wales.
1819 Spain signs a treaty with the United States ceding eastern Florida.
1825 Russia and Britain establish the Alaska/Canada boundary.
1862 Jefferson Davis is inaugurated president of the Confederacy in Richmond, Va. for the second time.
1864 Nathan Bedford Forrest's brother, Jeffrey, is killed at Okolona, Mississippi.
1865 Federal troops capture Wilmington, N.C.
1879 Frank Winfield Woolworth's 'nothing over five cents' shop opens at Utica, New York. It is the first chain store.
1902 A fistfight breaks out in the Senate. Senator Benjamin Tillman suffers a bloody nose for accusing Senator John McLaurin of bias on the Philippine tariff issue.
1909 The Great White Fleet returns to Norfolk, Virginia, from an around-the-world show of naval power.
1911 Canadian Parliament votes to preserve the union with the British Empire.
1920 The American Relief Administration appeals to the public to pressure Congress to aid starving European cities.
1924 Columbia University declares radio education a success.
1926 Pope Pius rejects Mussolini's offer of aid to the Vatican.
1932 Adolf Hitler is the Nazi Party candidate for the presidential elections in Germany.
1935 All plane flights over the White House are barred because they are disturbing President Roosevelt's sleep.
1942 President Franklin Roosevelt orders Gen. Douglas MacArthur to leave the Philippines.
1951 The Atomic Energy Commission discloses information about the first atom-powered airplane.
1952 French forces evacuate Hoa Binh in Indochina.
1954 U.S. is to install 60 Thor nuclear missiles in Britain.
1962 A Soviet bid for new Geneva arms talks is turned down by the U.S.
1963 Moscow warns the U.S. that an attack on Cuba would mean war.
1967 Operation Junction City becomes the largest U.S. operation in Vietnam.
1984 Britain and the U.S. send warships to the Persian Gulf following an Iranian offensive against Iraq.

Non Sequitur


TSA traumatizes child in wheelchair

A three-year-old girl with spina bifida "was reduced to tears by TSA screeners on her way to a family vacation in Florida earlier this month." Video at Gothamist.

Isla de las Muñecas

Mexico's Creepiest Place

The Island Of The Dolls (Isla de las Muñecas), located in the vast network of canals that lies to the south of Mexico City, near Xochimilco is one of the creepiest tourist attractions in Mexico. Here, among the branches and dead trees hang hundreds of old, mutilated dolls.

The story goes that half a century ago a little girl drowned off a small island hidden deep amongst the canals of Xochimico. The island's only permanent inhabitant was a hermit named Don Julián Santana Barrera, who despite having a wife and family, chose to live alone on the island. Soon after the girl's death Barrera fished out one doll after another from the canals. Convinced that this was a sign from the evil spirit, Don Julian Santana began hanging the dolls on trees to protect himself from evil and calm the spirit of the dead girl. Soon Don Julián had made the entire island into a shrine.

How Much Would the Sea Level Drop if Every Ship Was Removed from the Oceans at Once?

Randall Munroe, the cartoonist behind xkcd and a profoundly brainy guy, answers bizarre physics questions submitted to his What If? blog. His most recent question pondered the effect of the sudden absence of the water displacement of all of the world's oceangoing vessels:
Archimedes’ principle tells us that the water displaced by a ship weighs as much as the ship itself. If we can figure out the total weight of all the world’s ships, we can figure out how much water they’re displacing, then divide that volume by the surface area of the ocean to figure out how much the water level would drop.
And his answer to the question? The sea level would drop 6 microns. But because the world's sea level is rising anyway, it would return to the previous level within 16 hours.

Random Photo

Astronomical News

There is a phantom in the machinery of the universe, and it evades even the best "ghost hunters" of physics.
A new votive candle is designed to smell like space.
What do you get when you combine a galaxy, its central super-massive black hole and some cool astronomical techniques?
Mars rover Curiosity has successfully placed a tablespoon of powder drilled from inside a rock into a scoop for analysis by its on board laboratory.
Could 3D printed food provide astronauts with the meals of the future?
Although launching food in space is a necessity, it doesn't mean it has to be boring.
When it's setting up a powerful shockwave in space made up of high-speed particles accelerated to nearly the speed of light, that's when!
Kepler-37b is the definition of "tiny." But how tiny is tiny?

Animal News

A common ape ancestor developed the ability to metabolize alcohol about 10 million years ago.
What appeared to be huge, dino-pestering fleas are more likely flies, says the team that discovered them.
Plant and animal matter is retrieved from the 350-million-year-old remains of aquatic sea creatures. 
A protein governs speech and language development in many animals, including humans, but it acts differently in different species.
Bottlenose dolphins use signature whistles when they're separated.

Animal Pictures