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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, September 6, 2013

The Daily Drift

You, got that one right ...!
Carolina Naturally is read in 192 countries around the world daily.
 Late for an important date ... !
Today is (nothing special) Day  

Don't forget to visit our sister blog: It Is What It Is

Some of our readers today have been in:
Athens, Greece
Buea, Cameroon
Saint John's, Byward Market, Ottawa, Mississauga, Markham, The Village, London, North York, Sioux Lookout and Calgary, Canada
Johannesburg, East London and Cape Town, South Africa
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London and Baker Street, England
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Madrid, Basauri and Ourense, Spain
Helsinki, Finland
Zhovti Vody and Kiev, Ukraine
Damascus, Syria
Rothe Erde, Germany
Mexicali, Mexico
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Hong Kong, Hong Kong
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Dhaka, Bangladesh

Today in History

394 Theodosius becomes sole ruler of Italy after defeating Eugenius at the Battle of the River Frigidus.
1422 Sultan Murat II ends a vain siege of Constantinople.
1522 One of the five ships that set out in Ferdinand Magellan's trip around the world makes it back to Spain. Only 15 of the original 265 men that set out survived. Magellan was killed by natives in the Philippines.
1688 Imperial troops defeat the Turks and take Belgrade, Serbia.
1793 French General Jean Houchard and his 40,000 men begin a three-day battle against an Anglo-Hanoveraian army at Hondschoote, southwest Belgium, in the wars of the French Revolution.
1847 Henry David Thoreau leaves Walden Pond and moves back into town, to Concord, Massachusetts.
1861 Union General Ulysses S. Grant's forces capture Paducah, Kentucky from Confederate forces.
1870 The last British troops to serve in Austria are withdrawn.
1901 President William McKinley is shot while attending a reception at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York, by 28-year-old anarchist Leon Czolgosz. McKinley dies eight days later, the third American president assassinated.
1907 The luxury liner Lusitania leaves London for New York on her maiden voyage.
1918 The German Army begins a general retreat across the Aisne, with British troops in pursuit.
1936 Aviator Beryl Markham flies the first east-to-west solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean.
1937 The Soviet Union accuses Italy of torpedoing two Russian ships in the Mediterranean.
1941 Germany announces that all Jews living in the country will have to begin wearing a Star of David.
1943 The United States asks the Chinese Nationals to join with the Communists to present a common front to the Japanese.
1953 The last American and Korean prisoners are exchanged in Operation Big Switch, the last official act of the Korean War.
1965 Indian troops invade Lahore; Pakistan paratroopers raid Punjab.
1972 The world learns an earlier announcement that all Israeli athletes taken hostage at the Munich Olympics had been rescued was erroneous; all had killed by their captors from the Black September terrorist group; all but 3 terrorists also died in shootout around midnight.
1976 A Soviet pilot lands his MIG-25 in Tokyo and asks for political asylum in the United States.
1976 Lieutenant Viktor Belenko, a Soviet air force pilot defects, flying a MiG-25 jet fighter to Japan and requesting political asylum in US.
1988 Lee Roy Young becomes the first African-American Texas Ranger in the force's 165-year history.
1991 USSR officially recognizes independence for the Baltic States of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
1991 Leningrad, second-largest city in the USSR, is changed to Saint Petersburg, which had been the city's name prior to 1924.
1995 Baltimore Orioles' Cal Ripken Jr. plays in his 2,131st consecutive game, breaking a 56-year MLB record held by Lou Gehrig; in 2007 fans voted this achievement the most memorable moment in MLB history.
1997 Funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales: over 1 million people line London's streets to honor her and 2.5 billion watched the event on TV.

Non Sequitur


Editorial Comment

Due to a very tight schedule today (well, that and a severe lack of sleep) we are Blogging Lite today.
We will return to our regularly scheduled postings tomorrow.
That is all ...

Man Forced to Wear "Idiot" Sign

People passing Cleveland's Second District police station this week may notice a man wearing a sign.
The sign says he is an idiot for making 911 calls threatening police officers. Cleveland Municipal Court Judge Pinkey Carr ordered Richard Dameron, 58, to wear the sign apologising to former “super cop” Jim Simone.

Police said he threatened to kill Officer Simone and other officers back in February. During his career, Simone was shot twice, including once in the head.

The sign reads, in part: "I apologise for being an idiot and it will never happen again." Dameron will have to wear the sign for three hours a day for the rest of the week.

Police stopped car with marijuana plants on front and rear seats and the driver's friend in the trunk

Police officers in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada stopped a suspicious car without its headlights on and found a load of pot plants in the front and rear seats. The driver's friend was also discovered in the boot.

The Toyota Corolla was pulled over at about 10pm on Sunday and police found the driver surrounded by 20 marijuana plants and his passenger in the trunk, "seemingly to make room for the marijuana in the front seat area" the RCMP said.
A 23-year-old man from Brookside, N.S., and a 24-year-old man from Hatchet Lake, N.S., each face charges of possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking and cultivation under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.

The men will appear in Halifax court on October 30th.


Another 'vampire' burial found in Bulgaria

Archaeologists working on Bulgaria’s Perperikon site have found the skeleton of a male buried with a ploughshare in its chest, a find that professor Nikolai Ovcharov has already described as a “twin of the Sozopol vampire.”
Another 'vampire' burial found in Bulgaria
Over 100 'vampire' graves have been found in Bulgaria in recent years
[Credit: Hristina Dimitrova]
The discovery in Sozopol last year quickly made the rounds of domestic and foreign media, which dubbed the remains a “medieval vampire”, but such burials had been found in Bulgaria before, with iron stakes likely driven through the deceased’s heart during burial rites given to intellectuals – a group often suspected by superstitious medieval Europeans of being warlocks communicating with Satan.

This appears to be the first find of this kind (or the first publicised one, at least) at Perperikon – a treasure trove that archaeologists are still not finished exploring after more than a decade of digging, given that the site has been inhabited since the early Iron Age well into the medieval era.

Coins found with the body have been tentatively dated to the 13th and 14th century. The skeleton appears to belong to a male aged 35 to 40, Ovcharov said.

“I say that he is almost a ‘twin’ of the Sozopol [vampire] because on the left side, between his neck and chest, there is a massive ploughshare. In other cases we have found nails and spikes, but there is no other known case, except the one in Sozopol, where a ploughshare was used. It is a ritual to prevent undeath,” Ovcharov said on September 2, as quoted by Focus news agency.

The remains of the Sozopol ‘vampire’ returned to the town earlier this summer, alongside a bust made using forensic facial reconstruction. According to the director of the National History Museum in Sofia and Sozopol native Bozhidar Dimitrov, the “vampire” might have been a historical figure – the pirate Krivich, who lived in the 13th century and appears to have acted as a town mayor at some point in his life.

Ovcharov, one of Bulgaria’s best-known archaeologists, has been leading archaeological digs at Perperikon for 13 years now and said earlier this spring that he hoped to finish work on the Perperikon acropolis this season.

This season’s digs focused on a part of the acropolis that held a large altar dating back to the first millennium BCE, a late antiquity Roman temple, as well as the medieval bishop’s palace from the 13th-14th century.

Perperikon, in Bulgaria’s eastern Rhodopes region, about 15km from the town of Kurdjali, has been the site of various forms of religious activity from about 7000 years ago, having first been used by the Thracians. The site is a popular tourist attraction and long-term archaeological work continues to unveil new discoveries.

Giant Triassic amphibian was a burrowing youngster

Krasiejow, Poland was a vastly different place 230 million years ago during the Triassic Period. It was part of a giant continent called Pangea, had a warm climate throughout the year, and was populated by giant amphibians that weighed half a ton and were 10 feet long. Metoposaurus diagnosticus was one of these giant amphibians, and its environment had only two seasons: wet and dry. Like modern amphibians, Metoposaurus needed water for its lifestyle, but the extremely long dry season in Triassic Krasiejow drove this species to burrow underground and go dormant when water was scarce.
Giant Triassic amphibian was a burrowing youngster
This is the femur of Metoposaurus diagnosticus krasiejowensis as viewed from
behind (posterior). The sectioned plane is marked by the white stripe
[Credit: Georg Oleschinski]
The burrowing behavior of Metoposaurus was recently discovered by Dorota Konietzko-Meier of the University of Opole, Poland and the University of Bonn, Germany, and P. Martin Sander also of the University of Bonn and was recently published in a study in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. This study examined both the overall structure of the skeleton of Metoposaurus as well as the microscopic structure of its bones.

The broad, flat head, broad flat arm bones, wide hands, and large tail of Metaposaurus diagnosticus led the investigators to conclude that this species swam in ephemeral lakes during the wet season and used its broad, flat head and forearms to burrow under the ground when the dry season began. The authors also examined cross-sections of the bones of Metoposaurus looking for growth rings, called annuli. These annuli are similar to tree rings, where a band of light and a band of dark indicate one year of growth. 

Giant Triassic amphibian was a burrowing youngster
This image shows microanatomy of the midshaft of Metoposaurus
femur [Credit: Georg Oleschinski]
In other early amphibians one annulus usually consists of a broad zone of rapid growth (wet season) followed by a thin band of slow growth (dry season), but in Metoposaurus, a period of prolonged slow growth was followed by a cessation of growth during the dry season. According to lead author Dorota Konietzo-Meier, "The histology of Metoposaurus long bones seems to be unique. In our interpretation it corresponds to the two-seasonal climate with a short, more favorable wet season and a long dry part of the year when life conditions were worse."

Dr. Michel Laurin from the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle who was not involved with this study, commented, "This interpretation is interesting, but problematic in some respects. This animal was much larger than any extant burrowing species I know of, and if it dug, I suspect that the snout and tail played a far greater role than the limbs, as we observe in most extant aquatic vertebrates."

Giant Triassic amphibian was a burrowing youngster
The histology of the midshaft of Metoposaurus femur is visible using polarized light. Note the thick inner layer of more highly organized tissue (more uniform color), which is called an annulus and corresponds to the dry season, and two layers of less organized bone called zones [Credit: D. Konietzko-Meier]
These annuli also give an estimate of age. Co-author P. Martin Sander said, "A common problem with these large amphibians is that you can't tell from the shape of their bones if they are grown or not; sometimes the youngsters get described as a different species from the grown-ups." This technique solves that problem. It turns out that all of the specimens preserved at Krasiejow were juveniles. The smallest specimen was only one year old, while the largest specimen was four. Adulthood in these large amphibians was usually reached around year seven. The authors do not know if this mode of life was unique to juveniles or if adults also burrowed.

Sander concludes, "It amazes me time and again how much we can learn from these extinct animals. The techniques we used have been around since the 1840s, but only in the last 20 years have researchers asked the right questions and drawn comparisons with living animals."

Animal Pictures


“I am lucky enough to have many Brown Bats on my property and have even built a special Bat Box for them.They intrigue me and have often thought what if ????. This was to be a technical challenge, hope you like it as much as we do.”
Thank You, Roy!