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Windmills Tilted, Scared Cows Butchered, Lies Skewered on the Lance of Reality ... or something to that effect.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

The Daily Drift

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Today in History

1381 The Peasant’s Revolt, led by Wat Tyler, climaxes when rebels plunder and burn the Tower of London and kill the Archbishop of Canterbury.
1642 Massachusetts passes the first compulsory education law in the colonies.
1645 Oliver Cromwell’s army routs the king’s army at Naseby.
1775 The U.S. Army is founded when the Continental Congress authorizes the muster of troops.
1777 The Continental Congress authorizes the "stars and stripes" flag for the new United States.
1789 Captain William Bligh of the HMS Bounty arrives in Timor in a small boat. He had been forced to leave his ship when his crew mutinied.
1846 A group of settlers declare California to be a republic.
1864 At the Battle of Pine Mountain, Georgia, Confederate General Leonidas Polk is killed by a Union shell.
1893 The city of Philadelphia observes the first Flag Day.
1907 Women in Norway win the right to vote.
1919 John William Alcot and Arthur Witten Brown take off from St. John’s, Newfoundland, for Clifden, Ireland, on the first nonstop transatlantic flight.
1922 President Warren G. Harding becomes the first president to speak on the radio.
1927 Nicaraguan President Porfirio Diaz signs a treaty with the U.S. allowing American intervention in his country.
1932 Representative Edward Eslick dies on the floor of the House of Representatives while pleading for the passage of the bonus bill.
1940 German forces occupy Paris.
1942 The Supreme Court rules that requiring students to salute the American flag is unconstitutional.
1944 Boeing B-29 bombers conduct their first raid against mainland Japan.
1945 Burma is liberated by the British.
1949 The State of Vietnam is formed.
1951 UNIVAC, the first computer built for commercial purposes, is demonstrated in Philadelphia by Dr. John W. Mauchly and J. Prosper Eckert, Jr.
1954 Americans take part in the first nation-wide civil defense test against atomic attack.
1965 A military triumvirate takes control in Saigon, South Vietnam.
1982 Argentina surrenders to the United Kingdom ending the Falkland Islands War.
1985 Gunmen hijack a passenger jet over the Middle East.
1989 Congressman William Gray, an African American, is elected Democratic Whip of the House of Representatives.
1995 Chechen rebels take 2,000 people hostage in a hospital in Russia.

Thirty Bacon Recipes That Remind You Why The Craze Rages On

Ah, bacon. Its long-lasting wave of popularity as a cult ingredient doesn't yet show any sign of disappearing. If one casually looks into factors that may have influenced the increased popularity of bacon in the last ten plus years, one is the rise of low-carb diets such as Atkins. Thus, if any of these 30 decadent bacon recipes strike your fancy and you end up making a batch, raise your glass of accompanying beverage in a toast to low-carb dieting everywhere. Sugary, carmelized bacon biscuits? Thanks, Dr. Atkins!

Bacon Espresso pudding shots

Peanut butter, bacon and banana bites

Bacon, Jalopeno and Cream Cheese Poppers

The Shady Math Behind “8 CDs for a Penny”

Like many folks, I joined the Columbia Record Club in high school, and immediately got a dozen of the hottest vinyl LPs for a penny (and many years later for DVDs). Millions of Americans did, but the real heyday of the business was in the ‘90s when everyone was buying CDs. The A.V. Club interviewed eight former employees of Columbia House for an oral history of the business model of selling music through the club. 
SFJ: The negative option—that’s what we called it, right?

CW: The whole business was premised on this concept called negative option. Which just sounds so creepy and draconian and weird, but the idea that if you don’t say no, we’re going to send you shit. It’s going to fill your mailbox, and we’re going to keep sending it unless you panic and beat us back. That was how the money was getting generated.

SFJ: Most times when you’re trying to get somebody to buy something, you are actively trying to get them to go and buy the thing, even if now it’s clicking or subscribing and subscription. Columbia House had this brilliant, perverse method which was [that] you sign up and then all you have to do is tell us not to send you things, and if you don’t remember that, we are going to sell you something and you have to pay for. And enough people will like that? Okay. And it was a profitable business. Could you ever get anyone to do that again?

PO: You can get a free trial of software, and if you don’t deal with turning it off, you’re going to get billed for $49. Again, all these things are precursors to how business is being done on the internet.

CW: You guys remember how mind-numbingly complicated the deals were? And they were always [trying to] squeeze an extra dollar out of everyone. It would be like, “2 for $3.99 gets you 4 for $4.99 and then a free CD on top of your $8.99.” You would look at these things, and nobody could rationally decode these deals. They were so gothic and complicated.
One thing in the article that stuck with me was that Columbia House was making so much profit that they could hire people who needed jobs -musicians between tours and their crews- to do very little work. At the time, that seemed like an incredible waste of money, but now it looks like a wonderfully egalitarian idea to reinvest profits in jobs instead of sending all the outrageous profits to CEOs and stockholders -although I'm sure those folks did alright. Read a lot more about the business of selling records through the Columbia Record Club at the A.V. Club. The article also contains the full-length documentary The Target Shoots First, about the inner workings of Columbia House.

Man Escaped Jury Duty by Dressing Up as a Prisoner

How far would you go to avoid jury duty?
James Lowe of Barnet, Vermont, went so far as to show up to court for jury selection wearing a black-and-white striped prisoner costume with matching hat.
According to The Caledonian Record, Lowe pointed out that there's no mention of clothing restrictions in the juror instructions. Even though a lot of people in the courtroom was amused at his outfit, the judge wasn't one of them:
"He [the judge] said he'd needed to think about what he might do," Lowe said. According to Lowe, Judge Bent said he had never seen anyone do what Lowe did to get out of jury duty.
James Lowe said Judge Robert Bent told him to leave because of his outfit and said he could be found in contempt of court.

Phone Addicts Get Their Own Text-Walking Lanes In Belgium

After Chongqing in China and Washington DC in the USA, now the city of Antwerp in Belgium has its own 'text walking lanes.' A local smartphone specialist, MLab, discovered that a lot of people text while walking, then bump into each other and drop their smartphones. With broken screens, buttons or trashed cases as a result.

10 Of The Most Beautiful Train Stations Around the World

As train commuters, people often walk in and out of the stations at a fast pace without a glimpse of the walls or space around them.
But sometimes, especially when you're in a unfamiliar place, it pays to take time to appreciate the train station which at times appear to be giant works of art in need of closer and longer looks. Here are 10 of the most beautiful train stations in the world that you should visit.

How they really did it in the old west


Brothel offering free sex in tax protest

A licensed brothel in Salzburg, Austria, has started offering free drinks and free sex in a protest against what its owner says is unfair taxation. It has been reported that the news “has spread like wildfire, with punters lining up to get inside”. Salzburg’s “red light district king” Hermann ‘Pascha’ Müller, who owns the well-known Pascha brothel, says that he no longer wants to be “the tax office’s pimp”. German-born Müller says that he’s already had to “turn away hundreds of disappointed customers” as he has had a full house since the "summer special" went on offer.
He says that he plans to continue the offer for four to eight weeks. Drinks are on the house and Müller says that he is paying the prostitutes’ usual hourly rate out of his own pocket. "In the last decade I have paid taxes of almost €5 million,” Müller said. “The problem is, the tax office wants more and more, and they are not cracking down on illegal street and apartment prostitution.”
He said that the summer special would be offset by any profits made in his other establishments, and that Pasha would not be liable for any tax during the special offer. He complained that officials come to check up on the business at Pascha every 14 days. “They allow me no room for manoeuvre.” He added that he rejected any allegations that he is involved in tax evasion or human trafficking.

What Happens At The Gynecologist

Men who are not in the medical field talk about what happens at the gynecologist’s office. If these guys would have been honest, they’d have just said they have no clue, but they were encouraged to speculate the best they could for the video. They have a couple of vague ideas from what women have told them, and fill in the rest with fantasy. No, the doctor (or nurse, in many cases) is not checking to make sure a woman is ready for you to have sex with. These exams are mainly to check and see if a woman has cancer. 

Missouri students slam curfew for women

Unhappy college women (Shutterstock)
Students at the University of Missouri-Columbia are organizing against proposed rules at the college banning female students from fraternity houses at times officials say the women are at the highest risk of sexual assault.

Cult won't 'persecute' sexual assailant

Indiana pastor charged with sexually assaulting disabled woman but his cult won't 'persecute' him

Argentina Moves To Make Street Harassment Illegal To Curb A Culture Of Machismo

"Sexual assault exists and the impunity around it is more than clear," a 20-year-old Argentine woman who experienced relentless street harassment said in a YouTube video.
Curbing The Culture Of Machismo

Turkish policeman sentenced to plant trees for teargas attack on lady in red

A Turkish policeman who teargassed a woman in a red dress two years ago was found guilty on Wednesday of misconduct and ordered by a court to plant 600 trees.
The images of the "lady in red", her hair billowing upwards as officer Fatih Zengin sprayed teargas in her face, later became a symbol of anti-government protests.

Zengin's sentence appeared to contain a deliberate irony. The protests, which began as a bid to stop the redevelopment of Gezi Park in central Istanbul, were dismissed by the government at the time as "nothing to do with trees".
The demonstrations spiralled into the worst anti-government unrest for years, spreading to cities around the country. The Istanbul court handed down a suspended sentence of 20 months in jail, which Zengin will only serve if he repeats the offence in the next five years. He will, however, be responsible for the young trees for six months after planting them.

Tomb raiding gang resold stolen plots

Police in Naples, Italy, have uncovered a gang who allegedly made a killing from emptying graves of their human remains and reselling the plots. For more than five years the gang have managed to tap into the lucrative burial plot market at one of Europe's largest cemeteries. The gang would empty tombs and chapels, some of them dating back to the 19th century, at Pioggioreale cemetery and dispose of the human remains, before selling the plots for thousands of euros.
Police caught wind of the grave goings-on in 2012, when a family pressed charges after returning to the city to find their loved one's burial plot occupied by a newly restored chapel complete with gate. Roberto D'Auria, the judge in charge of preliminary investigations, said the gang had an elaborate system worked out that involved a “circle of informers.” It was made up of a notary, who is accused of providing false deeds for the plots, as well as two owners of a local funeral parlor.
Fourteen others were also involved, including employees of the city council who were responsible for finding forgotten tombs that were fit for “recycling". Public prosecutor Vincenzo Piscitelli highlighted the grim reality of “recycling”, stating that it involved more than giving an old tomb a lick of paint. “Above all else, the tombs needed to be emptied of their human remains, which were then disposed of who knows where,” he said. Once the gang had identified, emptied and restored a tomb, it was ready to be sold. Some of the plots were sold online.
One gigantic burial chapel that was seized by the police had been placed online with an asking price of €800,000. Pioggioreale is the biggest cemetery in Naples and one of the largest in Europe. Laws currently prohibit the private sale of funeral plots. Owners wishing to give up their spot must inform the local authority, who will reallocate the space and collect a fee. The high cost of burial plots in Naples means that grave robbing is a lucrative business. It costs between €10,000 and €50,000 for a plot – and even then, there's no guarantee it will be an eternal resting place.

Malaysia to deport four ‘earthquake-causing’ Westerners over nude photos on sacred peak

Mount Kinabalu is considered sacred by Malaysia's Kadazan Dusun tribal group, who believe it is a resting place for spirits (AFP Photo/Mohd Rasfan)
Four Western tourists were ordered deported from Malaysia on Friday after pleading guilty to obscenity charges for taking nude photos on a popular climbing peak, an act some in the country blamed for causing a deadly earthquake.
The defendants — Eleanor Hawkins of Britain, 24, Dutchman Dylan Snel, 23, and Canadian brother and sister Lindsey, 23, and Danielle Petersen, 22 — were arrested earlier this week in the wake of the deadly June 5 quake which killed 18 people on Mount Kinabalu.
A court in Kota Kinabalu, capital of the state of Sabah on Borneo island, sentenced them to three days’ jail time starting from when they were arrested on Tuesday, meaning their term had been served.
They also were fined 5,000 Malaysian ringgit ($1,330) and ordered deported for committing an “obscene act in a public place,” which can carry a three-month jail term.
It was not immediately clear when they would be deported.
“It is a wake-up call to tourists not to ignore local traditions and culture,” Masidi Manjun, the state’s tourism minister, told AFP.
“Since they pleaded guilty and showed remorse, it is only fair that they are let off with a fine by the court.”
The 4,095-meter (13,435-foot) peak, a World Heritage Site and popular climbing destination, is considered sacred to tribal groups on Borneo, and many Malaysians were incensed after the photos taken May 30 circulated on the Internet.
The four convicted Friday were among a larger group of tourists believed by authorities to have taken part.
Police told AFP on Friday they were still seeking five others, but that some were thought to have left Sabah.
The defendants were hustled into court through a media scrum including reporters from Britain who arrived in the sleepy state capital to follow Hawkins’ fortunes.
The two women were handcuffed together, as were the men, all four looking nervous.
The court was told the nudists challenged each other to take off their clothes to see who could withstand the summit’s chilly air, ignoring the admonishments of their local mountain guide.
The two men stripped completely nude while the two women went topless, the charge sheet said.
All four quickly stated “guilty’ when asked to enter a plea.
Indecent exposure and other acts considered obscene are strongly frowned upon in Muslim-majority Malaysia.
Some have suggested the act angered tribal spirits believed to dwell on the mountain, causing the 6.0-magnitude earthquake.
Tim Hawkins, Eleanor’s father, had earlier released a statement saying his daughter knows what she did was stupid and disrespectful and is very sorry for the offense that she has caused the Malaysian people.”
Following the quake, Malaysian social media users began to direct increasing anger at the nudists.
Last Saturday, Sabah’s deputy chief minister Joseph Pairin Kitingan and other officials also suggested a link to the quake.
“This is very offensive behavior and showed disrespect to the sacred mountain…This will certainly bring misfortune,” he had told reporters.
The earthquake, rare for Malaysia, sent landslides and boulders raining down just as more than 150 hikers were near the summit enjoying its sunrise views.
The 18 dead included seven schoolchildren from Singapore, along with two of their teachers and another adult who were on a school excursion to the mountain.
One of the 'nude' photos in question

Estonian construction workers dig up medieval ships

The remains of a medieval ship uncovered by construction workers building a new residential area in Tallinn, Estonia on June 11, 2015
The capital of Estonia is perhaps not the place where one would expect to find the remains of medieval ships, but that is exactly what happened to a group of construction workers in Tallinn this week.
While working on the foundations for high-end apartments in a seaside area of the Baltic state's capital, the men noticed something strange in the ground: the remains of at least two ships thought to be from the 14th-17th centuries.
"We were digging the ground, when we found some massive wooden pieces, and we decided this might be something interesting," said Ain Kivisaar, spokesman for property developer Metro Capital.
They informed the heritage protection authorities, whose role over the coming weeks will be to recover the ships and find out their provenance.
"Today we know there are two wrecks, and there may be another, but we don't know, we need to continue digging," said Maili Roio of the National Heritage Board.
Archaeologist Priit Lahi said the find was important for shedding light on shipbuilding from previous centuries.
"At the time, shipbuilders used their own methods -- it wasn't very scientific. There weren't project drawings like we have today," he said.
The discovery follows the unearthing of Viking-era ships on Estonia's largest island, Saaremaa, in 2009.

Head Case: The Debate That Divided Archaeology

A brash adventurer, a mysterious skull, and the debate that divided archaeology.
Ephraim George Squier was a year into his journey across Peru when he reached the city of Cuzco. Evidence of his trek clung to his body: skin tattooed with mud, armpits ripe from the humidity, clothes so soiled their original color was obscured. It was 1864, and the 42-year-old American was hell-bent on finding something that would make him a legend among archaeologists.
What lured Squier to Cuzco is still a mystery—an invitation, a tip, instinct? But after months in the wilderness, the city must have beckoned to him. Squier compared the sight of the city’s palace to the decadent houses on the Grand Canal in Venice. Inside, amid the usual trappings of wealth, the walls were lined with statues, weapons, pottery. Squier had collected similar items in the jungle. But now he had stumbled into an abundance.
The head of the house, Señora Zentino, dressed the part: formal gowns, often augmented with a Peruvian scarf or, given her love of antiques, a necklace of Incan tokens. Next to such finery, the skull she cradled should have startled Squier.

The whole thing sounds like a fable: a wandering adventurer, a mysterious, aging beauty in a jungle palace, a stolen head. In a pulp novel, a skull such as this would have been cursed. But as Squier turned it over in his hands like a diamond in the sunlight, he marveled at its defining feature—a square-shaped hole on its top left side.
Archaeologists across the world had unearthed skulls with holes before, in quarries or mass graves. Some argued that ancient tribes had mutilated them postmortem, perhaps to make drinking vessels or amulets. Most academics simply dismissed the marks as the results of infections, birth defects, or animal bites.
But as Squier looked closer, he became convinced this hole was not natural: Nature doesn’t work in right angles. Peering at the squarish 15-by-17-millimeter hole, he could see healing scars and signs of new bone growth. This person had not only been alive during the cutting—he or she had survived. A startling idea occurred to Squier: Could this be evidence of ancient neurosurgery?
In proposing that Incans practiced brain surgery—something even the best European and American doctors struggled with—and positing that ancient American civilizations were as advanced as ancient Egypt and Rome, Squier was gambling with his reputation. At the time, there was a pervasive prejudice against Amerindian tribes, who had long been dismissed as loin-clothed savages wielding crude tools. This was tangible proof otherwise. And Squier was willing to do anything—cross colleagues, forgo his dignity, sacrifice his marriage—to make the rest of the world understand.
The Guano Problem
The funny thing is, Squier hadn’t traveled to South America to learn more about ancient neurosurgery or to combat stereotypes. No, Squier had come to South America to settle something far more serious: an argument about bird poop.
Throughout the 1800s, farmers used natural fertilizers to grow crops. The best fertilizers came from islands off South America, where mountains of guano had piled up over eons. Guano proved so important to global health and economics—millions of dollars were at stake, not to mention the health of millions of hungry people—that Chile, Bolivia, and Peru actually went to war over bird excrement in 1879.

For most of the 1800s, the U.S. imported thousands of tons of guano per year, and with the outbreak of the Civil War in the 1860s, securing fertilizer to help guarantee a steady supply of food became a necessity. But a number of international incidents (one involving Confederate pirates seizing Peruvian ships and destroying guano cargo) had angered Peru, and the government was threatening to cut off the pipeline. The situation forced Abraham Lincoln to address the United States’ guano deficit head on. He dispatched a delegation to Peru in July 1863, and Squier, who had served as a diplomat in Central America, was a natural choice.
Squier spent five months untangling the legal claims in Peru. Having succeeded, he then sent his wife, Miriam, home to New York and set out to explore his real interest, the country’s buried artifacts and vine-choked ruins. Over the next 18 months, he traveled everywhere from the coast of Peru to the peaks of the Andes deep in the interior. He saw mountain fortresses, llamas, and statues and artifacts of every kind. The trip culminated with a visit to Señora Zentino, which was when the idea of ancient neurosurgery grabbed him.
Squier saw the holes as evidence of trepanation—a procedure in which surgeons cut out a pocket of the skull to relieve internal pressure and remove sharp fragments of bone. Western doctors had been trepanning skulls as far back as ancient Greece, and it had a brutal reputation. Medieval doctors plugged patients’ ears with lint so they couldn’t hear their own heads being sawed open. Few people who endured trepanation survived. By 1700, most clinics had abandoned the procedure. As one British surgeon declared in 1839, any doctor who proposed trepanning someone “ought to be trepanned in turn.”
Squier’s claim, then, seemed iffy—if the best European surgeons couldn’t pull off trepanations, how could so-called primitive jungle tribes? But Squier was convinced. After returning to New York in 1865, he showed the skull to colleagues and outlined his theory. In the debate that followed, some sided with Squier, while others derided the idea.
Undeterred, Squier appealed to the highest scientific authority around, French neurologist Paul Broca. Broca had recently achieved worldwide fame by discovering the first-known language center in the brain, now called Broca’s area. The Frenchman shared Squier’s passion for archaeology, especially for skulls, and in 1867, he snapped up Squier’s offer to examine the Incan skull.
Broca’s conclusions were unequivocal: Squier was correct. The shape of the hole could not have been natural or accidental, and he confirmed that new bone had grown around the rim. Broca’s medical eye also found signs of inflammation, further evidence that the patient had survived.
Broca forced scientists in Europe to confront the possibility that ancient people had developed their own sophisticated medical practices. Soon, other archaeologists started to notice trepanned skulls in their collections, some potentially dating back 10,000 years. Most of the holes were small and circular, but some gaped as wide as five inches across. Many had rims completely smoothed over by new bone growth, indicating that the patients had lived for years after. Skulls with multiple trepanations even turned up. One unlucky Incan fellow had seven separate holes in his head, all perfectly healed. But as archaeologists embraced Squier’s theory, a bigger mystery emerged: Why were civilizations performing trepanations in the first place?
Trepanation: A How-To Guide
Before they could tackle why, archaeologists needed to understand how. Over the years, Incan pots with images of trepanations had turned up. Additionally, evidence from rural Kenya, New Guinea, and similarly remote areas showed that other tribes were also proficient in the practice.
The procedure looked something like this: Imagine a young warrior hit in the head with a slingshot stone, which left a crater of mangled bone. A surgeon would clamp the young man’s head between his knees, crack open a coconut, and pour the juice on the scalp. The doctor, meanwhile, would dab fresh-cut leaves on the wound to dull the pain.
Then he’d get to work, using a shark tooth or something sharp to cut into the skull, grooving it round and round the depressed fracture, carefully working the incision deeper. Throughout the process, the warrior would gulp alcohol or consume tobacco to quell the discomfort. He would feel almost nothing after the initial pain: just the friction of the shark tooth against his skull. At last, the warrior would experience a slight sucking sensation as a plug of skull bone came free. With bamboo fashioned into forceps, the surgeon would pick out the bone splinters and wash the wound with coconut milk. He’d sew up the scalp with a needle and thread made of bat bones and banana fibers. A dressing of leaves and a plaster of pepper, lime, and betel nut might seal the wound. Finally, the patient would be instructed to eat soft foods for a week and minimize the movement of his head.
As with today’s procedures, managing pain and infection were the biggest concerns, but surgeons had measures to combat these. The coca leaves helped anesthetize the skull. Similarly, wild plants like balsam killed bacteria, as did washing wounds with coconut milk. In fact, ancient surgeons did a remarkable job with sterilization: In one study of 66 trepanned skulls, just three showed any signs of infection. These surgeons had a better track record than their counterparts in industrialized countries. In one survey from London in the 1870s, 75 percent of neurosurgical patients died, mostly due to infections. Compare that to the New Guinea tribes, where surgeons lost just 30 percent of their patients.
Why ancient cultures performed neurosurgery remains controversial. After years of studying skull holes, Broca concluded that doctors had trepanned skulls primarily to release spirits trapped inside the brain. Moreover, he hypothesized that they operated mostly on children, a claim he based on a macabre experiment. Using sharp glass, Broca managed to open the skull of a recently deceased 2-year-old in four minutes. Cutting a similar hole in an adult skull required 50 minutes, and his hand ached. Broca concluded that ancient surgeons lacked the patience and tools to cut through adult skulls and therefore must have limited the procedure to children, who grew up with holes in their heads.
But most scientists doubt Broca’s conclusion, partially because few trepanned child skulls have ever turned up. Broca’s theory that trepanation released evil spirits, however, proved enormously influential. This idea played into stereotypes of ancient people. And, in truth, many tribes—despite wildly different supernatural beliefs—probably did trepan people to treat epilepsy and hallucinations, maladies often associated with spirits.
Squier and other archaeologists always doubted the spirit theory, however. They promoted an alternative: that ancient neurosurgeons were removing bone fragments from injuries sustained during combat. Modern research has provided strong evidence for this, especially among the Inca. For one thing, far more males than females had trepanation holes, likely because most warriors were males. For another, the holes were usually located on the left side of the skull—where a right-handed assailant would aim a slingshot or smash his club.
From a modern medical perspective, the idea makes sense: Doctors today still trepan people to reduce pressure on the brain after injury. The practice is meant to reduce swelling and the buildup of blood and other fluids, which can kill brain cells.
In the end, Squier bested Broca in the debate over why ancient neurosurgeons cut open skulls. But while Broca continued to have a glorious career, Squier’s unraveled not long after his discovery—as if the skull really were cursed.
Sad State of Squier's Affairs
It all started when Squier sent his wife, Miriam, home from Peru after the guano affair. Alone and resentful, Miriam accepted a job editing magazines for publisher Frank Leslie, and the two became inseparable. After his divorce in 1866, Leslie moved in with her and Squier. This seemed suspicious enough, but things really turned nasty in 1867 when the trio took a trip to Liverpool. Squier had some outstanding debts in England, and, humiliatingly, the police arrested him the moment he stepped ashore. An “anonymous” tipster—likely Leslie—had wired ahead to alert his creditors. With Squier out of the way, Leslie and Miriam’s affair began in earnest.
In May 1873, Miriam finally divorced Squier after publicly accusing him of sleeping with two prostitutes. Free of her husband, Miriam married Leslie in July 1874—a betrayal that broke Squier’s spirit. Just one month later, he had deteriorated to the point that a judge temporarily committed him to an insane asylum. Squier died at his brother’s home in Brooklyn in 1888. He was 67.
It was a sad, sordid end for one of America’s greatest archaeologists. Still, Squier did accomplish his life’s goal. He hadn’t thought much of Lincoln’s assignment in 1863, grumbling that guano “has contributed more towards the corruption of [Peru] than any one other thing.” But his trip to South America—and his willingness to take seriously a funny-looking hole in an old skull—revolutionized our understanding of ancient medicine, showing the world that, sometimes, a hole in the head is a sign of sophistication.

Shark killed in truck accident

From the "Now, that's a Headline you don't see everyday" Department: 
A shark being transported from Florida to an aquarium in New York died after sustaining injuries when the truck carrying the fish experienced a blowout, authorities say. Three other sharks that were also in the semi-trailer truck at the time of the incident were unharmed and safely transferred to SeaWorld Orlando. A spokesperson with the Florida Highway Patrol said the incident happened at around 2:24pm on Wednesday near Edgewater.
Early reports from authorities indicated that there was a total of five sandbar sharks inside the truck. FHP later corrected that number, from five to four. Troopers said the truck was traveling northbound when it experienced a right, front tire tread separation and then traveled into the median. The driver attempted to maintain control of the truck, but as the vehicle went off the road, it became too bumpy and resulted in fatal injuries to one of the sharks after it was thrown out of its tank.
No other vehicles were involved, and the driver and two passengers were not harmed. The three sharks that survived the crash appear to be okay. "They're in good condition. The rest are well and appear to be in good health," said Jim Kinsler, Assistant Curator of Fishes at SeaWorld Orlando. "We'll care for them until future plans are made to take them on the rest of their journey." Crews cut down trees surrounding the truck so that it could be towed from the scene.

The team from SeaWorld Orlando carried each shark from the truck to a special vehicle brought over from Orlando. "Sharks require good water conditions and appropriate space and care during the transport. With our expertise and equipment and knowledge, that's what will make a successful transport," Kinsler added. The trailer is owned by Dynasty Marine Transportation, Inc. out of Marathon, Florida and was transporting the sharks to the New York Aquarium on Coney Island. A spokesperson with SeaWorld Orlando said it is not yet known how long the sharks will be staying at their facility.

Animal Pictures