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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.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The Daily Drift

Editor's Note: We are back to our regularly scheduled postings.
Fortune Cookie Say ...!
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Today in History

1539   Hernando De Soto claims Florida for Spain.  
1861   Union troops defeat Confederate forces at Philippi, in western Virginia  
1864   Some 7,000 Union troops are killed within 30 minutes during the Battle of Cold Harbor in Virginia.  
1888   The classic baseball poem "Casey at the Bat," written by Ernest L. Thayer, is published in the San Francisco Examiner.
1918   The Finnish Parliament ratifies a treaty with Germany.  
1923   In Italy, dictator Benito Mussolini grants women the right to vote.  
1928   Manchurian warlord Chian Tso-Lin dies as a result of a bomb blast set off by the Japanese.  
1938   The German Third Reich votes to confiscate so-called "degenerate art."  
1940   The German Luftwaffe hits Paris with 1,100 bombs.
1942   Japanese carrier-based planes strafe Dutch Harbor in the Aleutian Islands as a diversion of the attack on Midway Island.  
1952   A rebellion by North Korean prisoners in the Koje prison camp in South Korea is put down by American troops.  
1965   Astronaut Edward White becomes the first American to walk in space when he exits the Gemini 4 space capsule.  
1969   74 American sailors died when the destroyer USS Frank E. Evans was cut in two by an Australian aircraft carrier in the South China Sea.  
1974   Charles Colson, an aide to President Richard Nixon, pleads guilty to obstruction of justice.  
1989  The Chinese government begins its crackdown on pro-democracy activists in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. Hundreds are killed and thousands are arrested.

How To Build The Only Five Campfires You'll Ever Need

There is no camping without a campfire, unless your idea of camping is sitting around the warm glow of a laptop screen outside your home, so avid campers have to know their way around a pile of fiery wood.
 photo 1261159624942996069_zpsrmxslqxe.gif
Groups like the Boy and Girl Scouts teach young recruits how to build a campfire out of gathered wood and kindling, but the basic Tipi style they teach you doesn't last as long as the Star, and isn't as effective for cooking as the Platform.
So if you’re planning on heading to the great outdoors this summer you should check out this article that teaches you How To Build The Only Five Campfires You’ll Ever Need, and make sure you invest in a Zippo lighter (or some waterproof matches) before you go!

Archaeology News

An ancient tombstone names a woman, but a male body was found beneath. 
The burials, found near Mogou village in northwestern China, date back around 4,000 years.

Social Brains

Even when we're resting, our brains are preparing us to be socialEven when we’re resting, our brains are preparing us to be social

Even when we’re resting, our brains are preparing us to be social, UCLA psychologists report A new study by UCLA neuroscientists sheds light on why Facebook is such a popular […]

‘Breathtaking in its stupidity'

Confused student listens to teacher (Shutterstock) ‘Breathtaking in its stupidity': Wisconsin Republican bill would allow high school dropouts to teach high school

Fake Groping

'Woman massaging a man' [Shutterstock]  

Woman reported for driving without due care and attention after car ended up stuck in tree

A woman driver lost control of a car and ended stuck up a tree on a motorway embankment.
Police estimated the vehicle was traveling at 100mph when it left the M69 in Leicestershire shortly before 3pm on Sunday.
The police said the driver and a passenger walked away from the wreckage, but were taken to Leicester Royal Infirmary to be checked over.
The vehicle was later safely recovered. Police have reported the woman for driving without due care and attention.

Intoxicated female motorist told police that ‘a man had dropped from the sky’ and driven car

When she was arrested for drink driving a woman told police that ‘a man had dropped from the sky’ and driven the car. Angelika Wierzchowska , 26, from Lurgan in County Armagh, Northern Ireland, admitted three offenses when she appeared last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.
She pleaded guilty to driving with excess alcohol on February 21 this year, not having insurance and failing to report an accident. The court heard that at approximately 2am police received a call from a member of the public about a blonde female who was drunk. Police found her in the driver’s seat of a car.
She was smiling and laughing and had the keys of the car on her lap. She had crashed into another vehicle. An initial breath test gave a reading of 109 and the defendant asked ‘will I not be able to drive for a year’. An evidential test gave a reading of 104 and on her way to the police station the defendant referred to ‘a man having dropped from the sky and having driven the car’.
Mr Conor Downey, representing the defendant, said this was the third occasion his client had been in court for not having insurance and it may be the case for a pre-sentence report. Adjourning the case until May 13 so that a pre-sentence report could be obtained District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, imposed a driving ban on the defendant. He told her that because of her record and the high reading when she was sentenced the ban would be higher than the minimum of 12 months.

Woman accused of assaulting husband with dirty socks

A Florida man has accused his 38-year-old wife of putting a pair of socks into his mouth during an argument.
The man told St. Lucie County Sheriff’s investigators his wife, Carolyn Gerges, grabbed his arm and “stuck a pair of dirty socks in his mouth,” an arrest affidavit states. He also said Gerges hit him in the back.
Meanwhile, Gerges said she hit her husband’s back and “put the socks ‘up to, covering and touching’ his mouth.” She stopped short of saying she stuffed the socks inside her husband’s mouth.
She said she put the socks there because he was bad mouthing her in front of their child. She denied grabbing his arm. As investigators were at the scene, Gerges hit her husband in the back. Gerges, of Lakewood Park, was arrested on two counts of battery.

Woman faces bribery charge for lick offer to police officer

A Louisiana woman is facing a public bribery charge after allegedly making an unusual proposal to the police officer who arrested her for attacking her live-in boyfriend.
Diane Thomas, 52, was arrested earlier this month for punching her beau in the face “multiple times” and scratching him with her fingernails during a confrontation in the couple’s Monroe home.
When Thomas was read her Miranda rights by a Monroe Police Department officer, she stated that her boyfriend was a “bitch,” adding that he “got in her face so she beat his ass,” according to a May 16 probable cause affidavit. After Thomas was handcuffed, she told Corporal Chris Ballard that she could not go to jail since she “has a good job.”
At that point, Thomas allegedly made Ballard an offer he would refuse. "If you won't take me to jail I will get on my knees right now," she reportedly declared. "Officer I will even lick your butt hole." Already facing a misdemeanor domestic abuse charge, Thomas was also issued with a felony public bribery count for allegedly offering to lick Corporal Ballard. Thomas was subsequently freed on $5,000 bond.

Man arrested for shooting painting dead after his friend had finished punching it

A man whose roommate punched a painting apparently decided to help by firing a gun into it and was subsequently arrested, according to a spokeswoman from Prescott police in Arizona.
Louis Cancelliere, 38, of Prescott, was arrested on May 16 and charged with discharging a firearm within city limits, a felony, reckless endangerment, and trespassing after he fired his .45 caliber handgun at the painting, Lt. Amy Bonney said.
"Cancelliere told officers his roommate had taken the painting outside for an unknown reason and had been punching the painting," Bonney said.
Cancelliere "became frustrated" with the roommate and went out to ask him "if he just wanted the painting 'dead,'" Bonney said. He fired at least one round through the art work, she said. Officers located a handgun and spent casing from a .45 caliber handgun nearby, she added.

Creationist Claims Proof Dinos And Humans Co-Existed; Scientists Fire Up Facepalming Machine

Creationist Claims Proof Dinos And Humans Co-Existed; Scientists Fire Up Facepalming MachineCreationist Ken Ham claims he finally found proof that dinosaurs lived with Adam and Eve. This ought to be good.

Man wired chickens' beaks shut to 'make them quiet'

A man who put wire through chickens' beaks to keep them quiet has been convicted and ordered to pay thousands of dollars in fines. Yong Jin Kim, from the Glenfield suburb of Auckland in New Zealand, kept chickens in his backyard and used wire to keep their beaks closed, the North Shore District Court heard on Tuesday.
The court found he had caused the birds pain and distress and he was ordered to pay veterinary costs of $1000 and legal costs of $2200. He was also disqualified from owning any poultry for five years. The case was first investigated by the SPCA in April 2014, following complaints from members of the public.
Kim told SPCA inspectors last year he pierced the wire through the beaks of two hens and one rooster "to make the birds quiet". He said he had done it two weeks before the chickens were seized by the SPCA. SPCA Auckland executive director Bob Kerridge said it was a "barbaric" measure that was totally unacceptable.
He said vet reports showed the birds suffered considerable pain during the procedure. "The wires caused nothing but distress to the chickens limiting their ability to feed and water. The chickens were in poor condition when we received them and gained a significant amount of weight after the wires were removed, confirming they were unable to get enough food with the wires in place." After recovering from their ordeal the chickens have been adopted to new homes.

Man arrested over cattle gallstone heist

Police have arrested a 35-year-old man in relation to the theft of valuable cattle gallstones from a meat processor in southern Queensland, Australia. The stones are used in Eastern medicine and could be worth up to $30,000 a kilogram. The Toowoomba Stock and Rural Crime Investigation Squad (SARCIS) executed a search warrant after receiving a tip-off about the stolen gallstones.
Senior Constable Glenn Evans said they acted quickly as they knew the stolen property could be quickly disposed of. "I understand that they were taken from the processor who was in possession of them," he said. Senior Constable Evans said while theft cases relating to cattle gallstones were uncommon, he believed the collection of them was not.
"Most cattle, depending on their age, have gallstones and I understand there is a market for them," he said. "I'd suggest that most of the [meat processing] plants throughout the country collect these stones and sell them as a by-product." Gold Coast based cattle gallstone trader Jenny Murtagh has been in the business for 30 years and she was called to Toowoomba by SARCIS to help sort, grade and value the stolen stones.
"It's a stone that's created in the gallbladder and it starts with a catalyst like a pearl," she said. "It builds layer upon layer, obviously the bigger the cow, the bigger the gallstone and they are retrieved when the beast has been slaughtered." Ms Murtagh said they were used in traditional Eastern medicine for heart, liver and general well-being. "It doesn't cure anything but it's a highly prized product," she said.

Researchers Inseminate World’s Last Remaining Female Yangtze Giant Softshell Turtle

by Gerald Kuchling
Yangtze giant softshell turtle (Rafetus swinhoei)The Yangtze giant softshell turtle (Rafetus swinhoei) is teetering precariously on the brink of extinction. Only four of the turtles are known to exist: three males and one female, all kept in captivity.
Two of the turtles, a male and a female, are located in the Suzhou Zoo in China. When zoo officials attempted to arrange a courtship between the two century-old turtles in 2008, the pair was not able to produce viable eggs. Officials believe that the male's reproductive organs were damaged decades ago, and have since turned to artificial insemination as a last-ditch attempt to save the species.
Never before have researchers attempted to artificially inseminate any species of softshell turtle; other insemination efforts with different species of turtle have not shown promising results.
Faced with the devastating consequences of inaction, however, an international team of scientists from China, Australia and the United States have gone through with the procedure and are hoping for the best.
Harvesting the semen was risky: researchers were forced to sedate the century-old male turtle and induce ejaculation through the use of electrical impulses, a procedure considered risky due to the turtle's old age. Luckily, both turtles recovered from the operation, and are now in relatively good health.
"The conservation world will once again be holding its collective breath until we know if this was successful. The optimism we felt back in 2008 when the pair was mating and laying eggs has slowly faded as reality sank in that this pair would not breed without intervention," said Rick Hudson, President of the Turtle Survival Alliance, who facilitated the effort.
The Yangtze giant softshell is the most critically endangered turtle in the world. Its decline has been attributed to habitat destruction and over-harvesting.

Bug House

We’ve also seen those creepy crawly bugs around our homes. What are the most common ones you should know about?

Warm-Blooded Dinos

Dinosaurs might have been more like us than previously thought, claims a new study.

Playing Bear Cubs

While driving back from a hike in Hetch Hetchy in California, YouTube user Jeff Molyneaux caught these two bear cubs playing in the middle of the road while Mama bear browsed for food off to the side.

Animal Pictures