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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, September 23, 2015

The Daily Drift

Welcome to the Wednesday Edition of  Carolina Naturally.
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Today in History

1553 The Sadians defeat the last of their enemies and establish themselves as rulers of Morocco.
1561 Philip II of Spain gives orders to halt colonizing efforts in Florida.
1577 William of Orange makes his triumphant entry into Brussels, Belgium.
1667 Slaves in Virginia are banned from obtaining their freedom by converting to christianity.
1739 The Austrians sign the Treaty of Belgrade after having lost the city to the Turks.
1779 The American navy under John Paul Jones, commanding from Bonhomme Richard, defeats and captures the British man-of-war Serapis.
1788 Louis XVI of France declares the Parliament restored.
1795 A national plebiscite approves the new French constitution, but so many voters sustain that the results are suspect.
1803 British Major General Sir Arthur Wellesley defeats the Marathas at Assaye, India.
1805 Lieutenant Zebulon Pike pays $2,000 to buy from the Sioux a 9-square-mile tract at the mouth of the Minnesota River that will be used to establish a military post, Fort Snelling.
1806 The Lewis and Clark Expedition arrives back in St. Louis just over three years after its departure.
1864 Confederate and Union forces clash at Mount Jackson, Front Royal and Woodstock in Virginia during the Valley campaign.
1911 The Second International Aviation Meet opens in New York.
1912 Mack Sennet’s first "Keystone Cop" film debuts, Cohen Collects a Debt.
1945 The first American dies in Vietnam during the fall of Saigon to French forces.
1952 Richard Nixon responds to charges of a secret slush fund during his ‘Checkers Speech.’
1954 East German police arrest 400 citizens as U.S. spies.
1967 Soviets sign a pact to send more aid to Hanoi.
1973 Juan Peron is re-elected president of Argentina after being overthrown in 1955.
1983 Gerrie Coetzee (Gerhardus Coetzee), boxer from South Africa; first boxer from the African continent to win a world heavyweight tittle (World Boxing Association).
1983 Gulf Air Flight 771 from Karachi, Pakistan, to Abu Dhabi, UAE, bombed; all 117 aboard die.
1992 Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) detonates 3,700-lb. bomb in Belfast, completely destroying the Northern Ireland forensic laboratory, injuring 20 people and damaging 700 houses.
2002 The first public version of Mozilla Firefox browser released; originally called Phoenix 0.1 its name was changed due to trademark issues with Phoenix Technologies.
2004 Hurricane Jeanne causes severe flooding in Haiti; over 1,000 reported dead.

Woman fights to keep children away from husband and his restrictive House of Yahweh religious cult

Amy Hawkins and three of her children (WCIV)
The religious cult — which the cult-monitoring website Religioustolerance.org says meets 10 out of 10 criteria as a dangerous or high-risk organization — rigorously controls its members’ day-to-day life and relationships.

Spanish Soccer Team Hires Syrian Refugee Who Was Tripped By Disgraced Reporter

The other week, hundreds of Syrian refugee burst through a police line at a Hungary refugee camp near the Serbian border. As police chased the desperate people ...

Railroads Won't Meet Deadline For Installing Automatic Speed Control On Trains, Report Says

Nocturnal Leg Cramps

Oktoberfest's Cathedrals

Artist Captures Places of Beer Worship
by Antje Blinda 
Oktoberfest's Cathedrals: Artist Captures Places of Beer Worship
Photographer Michael von Hassel takes haunting photographs of Oktoberfest's cavernous beer tents once all of the millions of annual visitors have gone home. More

Guilty of Selling Horse and calling it Zebra

A steakhouse in Watford, Hertfordshire, has been found guilty of selling horse and venison meats as exotic zebra and wildebeest dishes. Kunal Soni, 32, of Hemel Hempstead, was ordered to pay £3,860.78 costs after pleading guilty to misinforming customers. In April last year, two officers from Hertfordshire County Council’s trading standards service attended The Steakhouse restaurant to carry out a test purchase following a complaint about meat substitution at the restaurant, which offers various exotic meats on the menu. The officers, who were the only two customers in the restaurant, placed their order with Mr Soni for one zebra and one wildebeest.
Only after the food had been served and the officers had identified themselves did Mr Soni indicate that the chef had made a mistake. In the kitchen, the officers noticed a ticket in relation to their order reading “1 venison, chips and salad; 1 horse, chips and salad” with no reference to either zebra or wildebeest. The meals were sent for analysis, which identified that the meat served as zebra was in fact horse, and the meat served as wildebeest was, in fact, red deer. A month later, trading standards officers returned to the restaurant and found that the freezer contained in excess of 22kg of what was labelled as horse meat – more than any other type of meat.
Neither the words “horse” nor “venison” appeared on the restaurant menu. At St Albans Magistrates' Court on Monday, Mr Soni didn’t dispute that offenses had been committed but argued that he was merely helping out at the restaurant, having just sold the business to the chef and therefore should only expect to have limited responsibility. Magistrates were told Mr Soni had described himself as a manager on three separate occasions to the local authorities, including the date of the test purchase. They said there had been an “obvious opportunity” to defer to the chef during the officers' visit. The action Mr Soni had taken, a mere verbal check of the order, was insufficient.
The court was advised that Mr Soni was now a man of very limited means and that his outgoings exceeded his income and he was given a 12-month conditional discharge for the offenses. Mr Soni can therefore be made subject to further punishment for this offense should he commit any further offense during the period of the discharge. Richard Thake, cabinet member for community protection at the county council, said: “The public must have confidence in the food that is put in front of them when eating out. There can be implications regarding traceability of the food, allergens and religious concerns in some cases. Passing off food as something that it is not puts other competing businesses at a disadvantage and undermines trust in the market.”

Whataburger Employee Fired For Refusing To Serve 2 Texas Cops

Bad Cops

Nine California Police Officers Caught on Camera Violently Arresting Crying Teen (VIDEO)This horrifying eyewitness video shows a child being handled violently by multiple police officers– all for jaywalking while trying to catch a bus.

Blind double-jointed woman who slipped out of handcuffs and bit police officer on bottom jailed

A blind double-jointed woman, who escaped from handcuffs and attacked police officers, biting one of them on the backside, has been jailed. Georgina Malcolm had been celebrating her birthday at a party before trouble erupted. She spat on police telling them she had hepatitis C. The officer she bit had to go to hospital for health checks. Depute fiscal Jenny Hamilton told Dunfermline Sheriff Court there had been a fight at the party and police attended. Malcolm “took umbrage” at the way officers were dealing with matters and was placed in handcuffs. “She was placed in a police van with handcuffs but she is double-jointed and so was able to release the cuffs,” said Ms Hamilton. She spat on one of the officers and when he opened the van door she hit his hands with the cuffs, leaving a six-inch scratch which also required hospital treatment because of risk of infection.
When another officer was trying to secure Malcolm’s legs he “felt a pinch on his left buttock and found she had bitten him” added the depute fiscal. “All this time she was claiming she had hepatitis C. The officer had teeth marks requiring hospital treatment.” Malcolm, 47, of Lochgelly in Fife, Scotland, had previously admitted that on 30th September she assaulted PC James Graham to his injury, struck him on the arm with a pair of handcuffs and spat on his face saying she had hepatitis C.
She also admitted assaulting PC Kay Rose by spitting on her and assaulting PC Adrian Harmes to his injury by spitting on his face, biting him on the body and again claiming she had hepatitis C. Defense solicitor Larry Flynn said his client had “lost the plot” after drinking too much at her own birthday party. He added it had been Malcolm who had initially phoned the police after a “fracas” broke out at the party. He said his client was registered blind, having lost the sight in one eye and with the condition of other deteriorating. Sheriff Craig McSherry jailed Malcolm for nine months. She was led from the dock in handcuffs.

Road-raging Mercedes driver shoots himself in the leg while waving rifle and handgun at Florida family

Angry businessman road rage (Shutterstock)
A man shot himself in the leg while waving two guns at a woman and her children during a Florida road rage incident.

Woman Arrested In Pooper-Scooper Attack

A Florida woman hit her live-in boyfriend in the face with a pooper scooper during an early-morning confrontation in their apartment, according to police.
Megan Smith, 27, was arrested for battery at around 5am on Monday when an argument about “living arrangements” with victim Alexander Buck allegedly “turned physical.” Police charge that Smith “picked up a pooper scooper and hit the victim in the face with it multiple times.”
The pooper scooper strikes knocked Buck’s glasses off his face and left him with “multiple abrasions to his left eyebrow and forehead.” Buck, who fled the couple’s Bradenton home and called 911, subsequently declined treatment from an EMS team dispatched to the residence.
During police questioning, Smith reportedly admitted to striking Buck with the scooper, which is used to handle cat litter. “She stated she hit him because the victim would not stop arguing with her,” an investigator noted. Smith was released from the county jail after posting $500 bond. She is scheduled for an October 15 arraignment on the misdemeanor charge.

A One-of-a-Kind Museum Lost in California’s Wildfires

Back in 1876 an old boy named Bell invented a contraption that we know so well.
The telephone has evolved and changed so much that you might want to take your children to a museum to show them what kind of calls you once made. Alas, we have one less opportunity to do so. The JKL Museum of Telephony near San Andreas, California, featured an extensive collection of telephones from every era since the device’s invention.
The museum’s collection includes telephones and related equipment from all over the world, from as early as the 1880’s to present day. Among the many goals of the museum is to have working telephones and demonstrations from all eras, and to interconnect working telephones by way of the museum’s extensive “central office” switching system.
The museum also houses an extensive library of telephony publications, including 100 year old texts, catalogs, brochures, and telephone company publications. The library is unequaled by any U.S. museum dedicated to telephony and most likely in the world. The museum has grown by acquiring private collections, donations of library materials, and purchases from private and public sources. The museum’s non-profit status has encouraged very generous donations to the museum which has added immensely to the size and scope of the collection.
Sadly, the museum burned to the ground in the Butte fire. But you can still see photographs and exhibits at the museum’s website. The museum owners hope to rebuild somehow.

America’s Largest Earthwork, Cahokia’s Monks Mound, May Have Been Built in Only 20 Years

by Blake de Pastino
It was ten stories tall, and wider at the base than the Empire State Building. And nearly a thousand years ago, it was the centerpiece of the continent’s largest city north of Mexico.
Today, the search to determine how native engineers built Monk’s Mound — North America’s biggest prehistoric earthen structure — has turned up some new and crucial, but very small, clues: the seeds and spores of ancient plants.
Researchers studying the giant platform mound at the heart of the settlement of Cahokia have studied its internal structure in closer detail than ever. And their new findings suggest that the huge earthwork may have been built surprisingly quickly — perhaps in just a fraction of the time that archaeologists once thought.

Remains of Pictish royalty found in Aberdeenshire

by Frank Urquhart
Archaeologists have uncovered the remains of what could be a member of early Pictish royalty at a dig in the heart of Aberdeenshire.
The discovery, by experts at Aberdeen and Chester universities, is one of the first ever made of Pictish remains in the north east of Scotland and was unearthed on the outskirts of the village of Rhynie - a site already renowned for its impressive collection of carved Pictish standing stones.
The pieces of bone were found in a carefully made sandstone grave which suggests the person buried at the site was of high status.
Previous digs at Rhynie have already uncovered rare examples of Mediterranean imports and intricate metalwork, adding to the growing evidence that the area was once a Pictish center of power.
Eight Pictish symbol stones have already been found at Rhynie - including the “Rhynie Man”, a six foot tall boulder carved with a bearded man carrying an axe which was discovered in 1978, and the “Craw Stane”, which is thought to have been the center point of an elaborate fortified settlement of the 5th-6th centuries AD.
The latest discovery was made during the latest dig by archaeologists involved in the Rhynie Environs Archaeological Project. And it is the first time remains of a body have been uncovered at the site.
Dr Gordon Noble, the project leader from Aberdeen University, explained: “We found elements of the legs, pelvis and jaw bone which we recovered and are now analysing in the lab.”
He continued: “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 centers, a landscape of power rather than a series of individual sites.”
The remains are now being studied using radiocarbon and stable isotope techniques in the hope of establishing a date for the burial.
A spokesman for Aberdeen University said: “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, from Chester University, said: “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.”
Dr Noble said the remains appeared to be those of an adolescent male or female - “possibly the son or daughter” of a Pictish King.
He explained: “We probably won’t be able to sex the remains unfortunately, But we believe they are those of an adolescent in their teenage years. It was quite a short person in a short cist. He or she could possibly have been the daughter or son of a Pictish King.
“The people who were buried in the cemetery were of very high status and probably related to the lineage of people in control in this area. But at this time period there were probably many Pictish Kings competing for territory and power.”
Dr Noble said: “There are a number of burials at the site but the cist was the only one to have preserved human remains. Other burials were just dug earth graves and one had traces of a wooden coffin.
“But the cist is in a classic Pictish burial monument with a cist grave surrounded by a square barrow. They would have had earthen mounds over the top of them.”
He added: “Unfortunately the Picts did not bury their dead with grave goods, unlike the Anglo Saxons. Here we have rely on context and the context is that this cemetery seems to be associated with a settlement to the south around the Craw Stane where we have found a fortified settlement dating to the 5th and 6th centuries AD.
“And the finds from that site are quite exceptional - buildings and pottery imported from the Mediterranean probably for storing wine and fragments of glass vessels from France for drinking the wine. The place name Rhynie also means ‘a very royal place.’
“So everything points to the fact that this was very high status, probably early Royal center of the Picts.”

A tiny puppy survived a 30-minute cycle in the tumble drier on the highest heat setting

A tiny puppy survived a 30-minute cycle in the tumble drier on the highest heat setting after being innocently shut in there by a toddler. Little Sienna Edwards, two, was playing with her pet Penny when she popped the Boston Terrier into the drum as part of a game. Her mother Christine, 31, had no idea the three-month-old pup was inside and her eldest daughter Megan, 14, turned on the dryer which was filled with damp clothes. But half an hour later mum-of-three Christine was horrified when she realized tiny Penny was missing. She yanked open the tumble dryer door and found the baking hot dog among the sheets, and rushed him up to the bath where she held the limp pup under the cold tap.
Panicked Christine bundled her into the car and drove straight to the vets where experts hooked him up to a drip and told devastated Christine to prepare for the worst. But miraculously the pooch escaped with just a burnt tummy, mouth and eye, and after a two-day stay at the vets was back to her normal happy self. Amazed Christine, from Utkinton, Cheshire, said: "She really is a lucky Penny now - an absolute miracle. When I took her in the vets told me to prepare for the worst and she really was on death's door. I really did think she would die as she had been in there for at least 30 minutes, and was just limp in my arms. But amazingly after two days when I went to collect her she was running around fine. She's sat next to me 100 per cent recovered and we just can't believe it."
Christine only welcomed Penny into her home three or four weeks ago and had spent the day running errands before the accident on Friday. Daughters Paislie, nine, and Megan returned home from school and Christine assumed the tired dog was having a nap in her cage in the kitchen or lounging in the garden. But unfortunately she was scooped up by youngest Sienna, who popped her in the machine and shut the door. Sister Megan, who was helping her mum out with the laundry, then turned on the machine's spin cycle at the highest heat setting. Christine soon started to worry about little Penny and after a quick search of the house decided to check the tumble dryer. "I had a bad feeling so went to check the kitchen and she was not in her crate so I looked in the garden and she wasn't there either," said Christine.

"I heard tumble dryer going I had an instinct she was in there so I opened it up. I found her limp and panting with her tongue hanging out and feeling hot. I ran upstairs with her and put her under the cold tap. She was just flopping and on death's door." They rushed to Birch Heath Veterinary Clinic in Tarporley where vets hooked the pooch up to a drip and administered medicines to bring down her temperature. Animal medics filled two rubber gloves with water to hold next to the dog in a bid to stabilize her temperature. She was taken to Chester Gates Referral Hospital for expert attention where she remained for two days. But miraculously when a nervous Christine turned up to pick her up, she was back to her normal self. "The nurses couldn't believe it," said Christine, who lives with partner Rob Ball, 31. "She really is a miracle. I won't let her leave my side now."

5 Ice Age Creatures You Never Knew Existed

When it comes to the Ice Age, our imaginations often wander to the mighty mammoths of Siberia or to the kooky cartoon companions of Ray Romano. However, the great giants of the last glacial period were as diverse as they were captivating.
Shashta Ground Sloth
Though the name "Ground Sloth" refers to a diverse suborder of mammals from the last glacial period, one of this group's most distinctive is Megatherium. These South American herbivores were drastically different from their contemporary cousins; they were tertiary beasts with thick skin, giant claws and long tails for protection against predators. They could grow up to 20 feet, larger than many contemporary elephants.
Woolly Rhino
The other woolly wonder of the Ice Age was the woolly rhino, which dwelled in the same habitat as the mammoths that so often overshadow them. Their lack of notoriety might be in part because of their early extinction. While mammoths lived up to 2,000 B.C. in a small isolated community on Wrangel Island, most predictions peg the woolly rhino's extinction at 8,000 B.C., making their fossil record harder to trace.
One of the oldest great mammals to go extinct during the final glacial period was the Glyptodon. These relatives of modern day armadillos were massive, reaching up to 10 feet at their peak. During the Ice Age, these creatures lived in the damp swamps of Arizona, but as the swamps dried up in the warming climate and hunters began to target the animals for their valuable shells, they gradually went extinct.
Not to be confused with their Eurasian relatives, the American mastodon was a forest dweller rather than a grassland grazer. Shorter, longer and more muscled than the mammoth, these giants of the Ice Age more closely resembled current Asian elephants. Their extinction coincides directly with the arrival of humans in the Americas and many fossils indicate that hunters carved their bones into weapons.
Cave Bear
The average European cave bear was the size of the largest modern brown bears (weighing between 800 and 1,100 pounds) and one of the few Ice Age giants not believed to have been hunted to extinction by humans. The lack of cave paintings of these creatures might indicate that humans avoided them purposefully. They went extinct long before many of the other large animals of the Ice Age, but the cause of their extinction remains controversial. The most viable hypothesis claims that the bears gradually went extinct as the plants on which they fed slowly diminished.

Meet Bunostegos Akokanensis, the First Creature to Walk Upright on all Fours

Bunostegos akokanensis
A pre-reptile that looks like a cross between a modern lizard and a hippo is believed to be the earliest known creature to walk on all fours, according to new research from Brown University.
As it roamed Pangaea 260 million years ago, the cow-sized herbivore Bunostegos akokanensis stood out -- quite literally -- from its peers, which were best described as "sprawlers," creatures whose limbs extended out from the side of their body, pointing sideways instead of downward.
In 2003, however, a B. akokanensis specimen's unique shoulder and elbow joints tipped paleontologists off to the creature's unexpected posture.
"A lot of the animals that lived around the time had a similar upright or semi-upright hind limb posture, but what's interesting and special about Bunostegos is the forelimb, in that its anatomy is sprawling -- precluding and seemingly directed underneath its body -- unlike anything else at the time," study lead author Morgan Turner said in a news release.
"The elements and features within the forelimb bones won't allow a sprawling posture. That is unique."
According to researchers, walking upright is more energy efficient than sprawling. In an area where food and water were hard to come by, those energy savings could have proved crucial to B. akokanensis' survival.
Turner's research is published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology.

Animal Pictures