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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 15, 2013

The Daily Drift

That's family for you - they drive you insane...!
Carolina Naturally is read in 193 countries around the world daily.
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Today is Felt Hat Day  

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Today in History

1588 The Spanish Armada, which attempted to invade England, is destroyed by a British fleet.
1776 The British occupy Manhattan.
1788 An alliance between Britain, Prussia and the Netherlands is ratified at the Hague.
1858 The Butterfield Overland Mail Company begins delivering mail from St. Louis to San Francisco. The company's motto is: "Remember, boys, nothing on God's earth must stop the United States mail!"
1862 Confederates capture Harpers Ferry, securing the rear of Robert E. Lee's forces in Maryland.
1891 The Dalton gang holds up a train and takes $2,500 at Wagoner, Oklahoma.
1914 President Woodrow Wilson orders the Punitive Expedition out of Mexico. The Expedition, headed by General John Pershing, had been searching for Pancho Villa, a Mexican revolutionary.
1916 Armored tanks are introduced by the British during the Battle of the Somme.
1928 Scottish bacteriologist Alexander Fleming discovers, by accident, that the mold penicillin has an antibiotic effect.
1935 In Berlin, the Reich under Adolf Hitler adopts the swastika as the national flag.
1937 Prime Minister of England Neville Chamberlain flies to Germany to discuss the future of Czechoslovakia with Adolf Hitler.
1939 The Polish submarine Orzel arrives in Tallinn, Estonia, after escaping the German invasion of Poland.
1950 U.N. Forces, lead by the U.S. Marine Corps, invade occupied Korea at the port of Inchon. Considered the greatest amphibious attack in history, it is the zenith of General Douglas MacArthur's career.
1959 Nikita Khrushchev becomes first Soviet leader to visit the US.
1961 Hurricane Carla comes ashore in Texas, the second-most powerful ever to make landfall in that state.
1963 Four young African-American girls are killed by the bombing of a church in Montgomery, Alabama.
1966 US President Lyndon Johnson urges Congress to adopt gun control legislation in the wake of Charles Whitman's sniper attack from the University of Texas's Texas Tower; in all, Whitman shot and killed 15 people before being shot dead himself by an Austin police officer.
1968 The USSR launches Zond 5, which becomes the first spaceshipt to orbit the moon and reenter Earth's atmosphere.
1971 The environmental group Greenpeace is founded.
1981 Sandra Day O'Connor is unanimously approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee to become the first female justice on the US Supreme Court.
1983 Menachem Begin resigns as premier of Israel.
1990 France announces it will send 4,000 troops to join those of other nations assembling in the Persian Gulf to protect Saudi Arabia and force Iraq's dictator Saddam Hussein to withdraw troops from occupied Kuwait.
1998 MCI WorldCom begins operations after a landmark merger between World Com and MCI Communications.
2004 National Hockey League commissioner Gary Bettman announces a lockout of the players union.
2008 The largest Chapter 11 bankruptcy in US history is filed by Lehman Brothers financial services firm.

Non Sequitur


Did you know ...

About the case of the (still) missing jobs

These 5 reasons small business owners should support a living wage

About underwater bacteria that reproduce once every 10,000 years

And I Quote

Abercrombie and Fitch to be fined after firing headscarf-wearing muslim

Noting that islamic attire being against Abercrombie and Fitch's "look policy", it fired a muslim employee. There's so much one might say about this, but it is the opinion of one person that matters: Federal Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers.
Rogers ruled the firm violated anti-discrimination laws when it sacked Hani Khan from a Hollister brand store. Ms Khan was initially allowed to wear a scarf in the Hollister brand's colors at the San Mateo, California store, but was later fired. The retailer had argued deviation from its "look policy" would affect sales.
You may remember Abercrombie and Felch from discriminatory classics such as Abercrombie refuses to make large sized clothes so that "unattractive people" can't wear them.
If you're wondering what the "natural classic American style" defined by Abercrombie is, here's an illustrative marketing shot from the same teen-oriented Hollister clothing line.
"In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids," said CEO Mike Jeffries in 2006. "We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don't belong [in our clothes], and they can't belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely."

The truth hurts

Instead Of Standing By Their Employee, Red Lobster Suspends Waitress Who Received ‘None Nigger’ As A Tip

racist receipt
Red Lobster might really be in trouble this time. We just reported on how a waitress, Tori Christina Jenkins,received ‘None, Nigger’ instead of a tip this past weekend from racist customers at the Franklin, TN Red Lobster where she works. Now, instead of standing behind Jenkins, Red Lobster has suspended her, citing a violation of company policy as the reason.
A spokesman for Red Lobster, Mike Bernstein, said in an email to the Huffington Post  that suspension with pay is “standard procedure” when company policy is violated. In this case, the violation would be publicly posting a receipt, which Jenkins’ father did, on Facebook, Sunday night, with a status message saying “that we still have much ignorance to overcome.”
Bernstein went on to write:
We take this extremely seriously. This kind of language is completely disgusting and has no place in our restaurant or anywhere else, and we are committed to getting to the bottom of what happened as quickly as possible.
He also said that Red Lobster is “extremely disturbed” by the message.
I am sure that the only thing they are disturbed by is the amazing amount of publicity this is getting,  especially since the fact that they suspended Jenkins on top of everything else she has been through with this ordeal. All this young lady is trying to do is make a living. No one should be subjected to that kind of treatment at their place of work, and the suspension just adds insult to injury, any “policies” they might have in place be damned.
Do the right thing, Red Lobster. Bring this young lady back to work, and condemn what these customers did.

The truth be told

Don't listen to Mom (or observational data)

Breakfast isn't necessarily the most important meal of the day

Here's a great piece by Anahad O'Connor that looks at the dozens of studies that are supposed to link the act of eating breakfast with weight loss — and the problems that very quickly arise when you look at them closely. The biggest issue: Most of the advice you get telling you to eat breakfast if you want to lose weight is based on observational studies — large collections of information about people's lives and health that scientists then comb through looking for correlations. Like any correlation, those associations should be thought of as jumping-off points for more research, not proof of how you should live your life. With breakfast and weight loss, the truth seems to be that the two things may not be connected at all. For every study that shows them inextricably linked, another found no relationship at all ... or even an inverse relationship, where skipping breakfast led to weight loss. 

Daily Comic Relief


Grass clippings blamed for police car fire

Deputies in Clay County, Florida,are looking for who or what caused a patrol car to catch on fire, and their main suspect is the freshly cut grass the car was parked on.
The so-called spontaneous combustion happened on Saturday in Orange Park while the deputy was parked on the side of the road during a traffic stop.
The car burst into flames seemingly without cause while the deputy was inside. An investigation is underway but no foul play is suspected.

Instead, authorities believe the freshly cut grass beneath the car got too hot when it touched the vehicle's undercarriage and sparked the fire. The deputy wasn't seriously injured but was taken to a local hospital to be treated for minor smoke inhalation.

Oversized shoes not to blame after van full of clowns crashed

A U-turn caused a crash involving a van full of clowns in West York, Pennsylvania on Wednesday evening.

The van was going south when its driver attempted a U-turn near a gate of the York Expo Center and collided with another van that was also heading south at about 5:45pm, according to West York Police. The van with the clowns in it was also pulling a trailer with a clown car on it.
Four clowns were in the van at the time, and one of them, the driver, 83-year-old James Billingsley of York, also known as "Dimples the Clown," suffered a minor bump on the head. He was taken to an area hospital for minor injuries. That was the only injury reported, police said.

Police say the clowns were going to the York Fair when the driver missed the entrance and attempted to turn around when the crash happened. The driver was wearing oversized shoes but police don't believe the footwear played a factor in the crash. However, he will be cited with making an illegal U-turn, police said.

Tiny frameless geodesic home costs only $2100

Built for $2100 and change, and easily broken down and transported. [Rig Some Light]
It is 18 feet wide at the widest point and about 13 feet tall. It feels very spacious for it’s 209 square foot floor. The dome shell is built out of 3/16” corrugated plastic and 3/4” blueboard foam insulation. The shell of the dome is a basically a foam board insulation sandwich. There is an outer plastic dome, two layers of tightly fitted blueboard insulation and then an inner plastic dome. It’s all held together with bolts that bolt through all the layers. The shell of the dome is about 2 1/2 inches thick.

In The News

Meet your newest meat safety problem 

A faster meat safety program, with fewer government inspectors and more inspectors employed directly by the meat companies themselves, is associated with higher levels of contaminated meat. So why is the USDA planning to expand this program nationwide? 

True tales of a chemistry lab accident

The artificial sweetener Splenda was discovered when a chemistry grad student misunderstood his advisor's instructions to "test" a compound and tasted it, instead. (This piece at Scientific American focuses on how the brain responds to, and is changed by, sweeteners.)

Awesome Pictures


Mountain view by frank douwes

World map, 43 A.D.

Source unknown; found at The Land of Maps tumblr.

Slingshot bullet from the 4th century BC

From the collections of the incomparable British Museum:
Lead sling bullet; almond shape; a winged thunderbolt on one side and on the other, in high relief, the inscription DEXAI "Catch!"

Shot of this type have been excavated from the Pnyx at Athens, associated with the Sullan siege of the city (TER).

Plowed field find was silver Viking ring

A man who found a dirty piece of metal in a field has discovered he is actually the lucky owner of a silver Viking ring.
Ploughed field find was silver Viking ring
The ring was found close to the remains of a medieval church [Credit: BBC]
David Taylor, from County Down, Northern Ireland, discovered a bracelet-shaped object while helping lift stones from a field. His wife thought it was a bull ring and told him to throw it out. A coroner's court has now found the ring to be treasure trove.

Almost 18 months ago, Mr Taylor noticed the strangely-shaped object lying on a stone in his brother-in-law's freshly ploughed field near Kircubbin on the Ards peninsula.

Mr Taylor, who was helping Andrew Coulter remove stones from the field at the Inishargy Road, said he was glad he did not listen to his wife Lynda. Instead he gave the ring a wash and contacted his nearest museum.

"She thought it was a bull ring and said 'throw that in the bin'," he laughed after the ruling at a treasure trove inquest hearing at Belfast coroner's court. "I just knew by the shape of it, it was something."

The artefact is thought to date from some time between the 10th and 12th Centuries.


Such finds are not usually made in Ireland and it is thought the ring may have originated in Shetland or the Orkney isles which were ruled by Vikings at that time. Vikings often used jewellery as a form of currency before they adopted coins.

According to University College Cork archaeologist John Sheehan the ring was found close to the remains of a medieval church.

Mr Sheehan told the coroner's court that religious sites were often used as a storage place for valuable items. He suggested the ring may have been stolen from Viking settlers by the native Irish.

"Maybe it fell into Irish hands and as a result of that ended up deposited for safe-keeping at a church site but then got lost," he said.

Mr Taylor was also thankful that he decided to help out his brother-in-law on the evening of the find in April last year.

"The night I went to help Andy lift the stones, he says 'nobody ever helps me lift stones'," he said.

The 45 g (1.6oz) ring will now go for valuation by experts at the UK Treasure Valuation Committee.

Pictish burials found at ‘Royal Rhynie’ site

The remains of what could be a member of early Pictish royalty have been discovered as part of an archaeological dig.
Pictish burials found at ‘Royal Rhynie’ site
The remains found in the grave could be a member of early
Pictish royalty [Credit: University of Aberdeen]
The discovery, by experts from the University of Aberdeen and the University of Chester, is one of the first ever made in the North-East of Scotland and was found in a carefully made sandstone grave which suggests the person was of high status.

The Pictish Kingdoms were some of the most powerful players in post-Roman Britain but understanding of their social and political structure is poor due to a lack of historical records.

Rhynie, Aberdeenshire, has long been known for its eight carved standing stones including the renowned ‘Craw Stane’. Previous digs have uncovered rare examples of Mediterranean imports and intricate metalwork which add to the theory that the area was a former Pictish centre of power.

The latest discovery, made during the Rhynie Environs Archaeological Project (REAP), is the first time remains of a body have been uncovered at the site.

“We found elements of the legs, pelvis and jaw bone which we recovered and are now analysing in the lab,” explained project leader Dr Gordon Noble of the University of Aberdeen.

“It’s extremely rare to find any human remains from this era in the North-East of Scotland as the soil in this part of the world is so acidic. One of the graves had been carefully made from split sandstone slabs to create a cist and the stone lining and collapsed capstones helped to preserve skeletal material.

“Unlike Anglo-Saxon areas to the south, the tradition in Scotland was largely for unfurnished burial so we didn’t expect to find rich grave assemblages.

“The nearby presence of the settlement near the Craw Stane strongly suggests these may have been burials of high status individuals and that Rhynie was, like other political centres, a landscape of power rather than a series of individual sites.”

The remains will now be studied using radiocarbon and stable isotope techniques, if the level of bone preservation is sufficient.

The Pictish heartlands and main powerbase were long assumed to lie in central Scotland but recent research has suggested the most cited Pictish kingdom, Fortriu, was based in the Moray Firth area and as such the northern Picts may have been major players during this time.

Shards of medieval imported glass from the west of France were also found near the remains during the latest dig at Rhynie.

Dr Meggen Gondek of the University of Chester added: “The imports along with the presence of evidence for fine metalworking, suggest that Rhynie is a high-status site dating to the early stages of the development of the post-Roman kingdoms in northern Europe. The 5th-6th century dates for Rhynie places it in the centuries immediately following the withdrawal of the Roman army from Britain.”

During the dig hundreds of members of the public visited the excavation and the site blog received over 3,000 hits in the two week period.

A Pictish cafe was organized by a local resident which exhibited artifacts found during the dig and was run in conjunction with a variety of events that promoted the cultural and wider educational aspects behind the dig itself.

Well preserved Roman chain mail unearthed

Archaeologists from Freie Universität Berlin made a spectacular discovery in their excavations of a Roman-Germanic battlefield at the Harzhorn in Lower Saxony. While exploring the area near Kalefeld in the Northeim district north of Göttingen, the researchers, headed by Prof. Dr. Michael Meyer, found the chain mail of a Roman soldier from the Third Century AD. It was the first time that such a well-preserved piece of body armor was excavated on a Roman-Germanic battlefield. 
Well preserved Roman soldier’s chain mail unearthed
Fragments of chain mail from Harzhorn found at Kalefeld
near Göttingen [Credit: Detlef Bach, Winterbach]
This piece of equipment, worn on the body, made it possible to reconstruct an individual story in the battle, a close-up image of the war, said Michael Meyer, a professor of prehistoric archaeology at Freie Universität Berlin.

The chain mail, which was found in several fragments, consists of thousands of small chain links with a diameter of about six millimeters. The iron in the rings, however, is largely decomposed. Chain mail was worn in battle by Roman soldiers of various ranks. 

Germanic warriors usually waived this protection; however, in Germanic burial grounds, remains of those laboriously produced armor can often be found. In this case, not only the object itself was an unusual find, but also the position in which it was found. It was located directly on the edge of the battlefield with probably the most intense combat action that could be detected on the Harzhorn hill.

"This discovery represents something fundamentally new for the Battle at the Harzhorn," said Michael Meyer. "This is the first time that an almost complete part of personal armor was found." Meyer said it is possible that the chain mail was stripped from a wounded Roman soldier by his comrades because they wanted to dress his wounds and carry him away from the battle zone. It is conceivable that they left the chain mail behind. 
Well preserved Roman soldier’s chain mail unearthed
Large fragment of chain mail from Harzhorn found at Kalefeld
near Göttingen [Credit: Clemens Fiedler]
However, it is also conceivable that it was specifically laid down in a certain place by Germanic soldiers after the fighting was over, as an indication that this location played a special role in the fighting.

The excavations this year were done on the edges of the main battle zones. The archaeologists wanted to ascertain how far the battles extended and whether different fighting locations could be identified that belong together or whether they were all isolated clashes. 

This Roman-Germanic battlefield is one of the best preserved sites of the Roman-Germanic conflict. Its discovery in 2008 was a sensation because until then it had been assumed that after the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest (Varusschlacht in German) in 9 AD there was no further Roman military presence in Germania. 

The site of the battle in the 3rd century has been studied since 2008 Michael Meyer, the head of the excavation, and his team, in cooperation with the state Department of Archaeology in Lower Saxony (Niedersächsischer Denkmalpflege) and the archaeologists of the district of Northeim.

Where did land plants come from?

More than 90% of land plants have symbiotic relationships with fungus and those relationships seem to date back hundreds of millions of years. At Topologic Oceans, Charles Soeder explains how this fact has become a jumping off point for an interesting theory about the evolution of land plants — maybe all the plants we see in our daily land-locked lives are the result of symbiotic blending of algae and fungus, similar to the way our own cells now depend on the offspring of a bacterial invasion in order to function

Random Photos


Maki Nishiyama

Unique Hotels From Around The World

Some travelers think that the place where you lay your head on the road is just that - a place to sleep, or change clothes. But there are some trips where the accommodations are the main attraction.

To the more daring traveler, the flower-quilted double bed and lacquered furniture of a typical hotel room is just plain boring. For the intrepid, quirky and adventurous globetrotter, here are 18 unique hotels from around the world.

Explore The Galapagos Islands With Google Street View

In partnership with the Directorate of the Galapagos National Park and Charles Darwin Foundation, Google are launching the 360-degree images from the Galapagos Islands that they collected last May with the Street View Trekker.

Now, you can visit the islands from anywhere you may be, and see many of the animals that Darwin experienced on his historic and groundbreaking journey in 1835.

Wildly Imaginative Zoo Ads

Zoo advertising presents ad agencies with a lot of room for creativity, enabling them to go wild with colorful characters and playful themes. Sometimes, zoo adverts promote a specific event, or they can be used to celebrate the arrival of a new animal. Often the aim is also to inspire people to pay their local zoo a long-overdue visit.

Despite good intentions, zoos are also businesses, and without enough customers they simply wouldn't make enough money to survive. With that in mind, here's a look at 15 incredible and inspiring zoo ads.

Man who couldn't find taxi stole horse

A man in a rush to get home after a night out decided he couldn’t wait for a taxi to take him home, so he stole a horse. Ronald Temprell, 25, took the horse from a farm, two-and-a-half miles from his home, but was caught after the sound of its hooves alerted neighbours. He saddled up on the horse stabled at Tulliallan Farms, near Alloa, early on May 11.
But at about 2.10am, neighbours called police after hearing the horse clopping down the road and spotting him riding it while two other men walked side-by-side. Temprell, who has been given a one-year commumity payback order for the offence, says he now wants to learn from the experience. He added: “I think I first fell in love with horses when I watched Black Beauty.
“I’ve always loved them really. On the night I took that one, I had been drinking and it did seem funny. I wanted to get home, but I’m not going to bump a taxi, so we were walking and came across the horses. As I knew about how to get the stuff on, I just started to saddle it up. It took me about an hour and a half. I could probably do it faster when I’m sober.”

Police traced Temprell from CCTV footage. Defending, Alistair Burleigh said: “He accepts he took the horse a relatively short distance home, but he sent it back on its way. It was a theft, but not on a permanent basis.” At Alloa Sheriff Court, Sheriff David Mackie sentenced Temprell, of the town’s Mill Street, to the payback order and instructed him to to attend alcohol counselling.

Conservation officers rescued deer from canal

A young deer was rescued after being spotted swimming in the Rideau Canal in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, on Friday.
Police called the National Capital Commission and three conservation officers went into action.

The officers were in a Zodiac watercraft and rushed to where the fawn was spotted near the Corkstown footbridge by the University of Ottawa.
NCC officials placed a noose around its neck and a blindfold over its eyes so it wouldn't be frightened. The deer was later released back into the wild south-east of the city's urban boundaries.

Rampaging kangaroo crashed through window of home after having swim in pool

An Australian man is in shock after a rampaging kangaroo caused thousands of dollars in damage to his home in the northern Victoria town of Echuca. The kangaroo was part of a mob that made its way into a housing estate in Echuca on Tuesday afternoon.
The large eastern grey kangaroo and three others got into the front yard of one home and ended up in a swimming pool. Then it crashed through the front window of Paul Giogianni's house, causing extensive damage. "It's lucky that (the damage) is contained to the lounge room and the little bit in my bedroom," he said.
"It could have gone on a rampage and destroyed the whole house." The kangaroo was badly injured after crashing through the window and left a trail of blood throughout the house. It was later put down. Mr Giorgianni says he cannot do anything to replace damaged carpet, curtains and windows until an insurance assessor arrives.

He says no-one knows why the large kangaroo ended up in the area. "It's just unheard of with that much feed around to come into town like that," he said. Mr Giorgianni, a truck driver, was away from home when his boss rang him to tell him what happened. He says he did not believe him when he was told his house had been broken into by a kangaroo.

Animal Pictures

Elk Staredown at Rocky Mountain National Park by Rob Kroenert on Flickr.