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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.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

The Daily Drift

Welcome to Today's Edition of
Carolina Naturally
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Today in History

490 BC
Athenian and Plataean Hoplites commanded by General Miltiades drive back a Persian invasion force under General Datis at Marathon.
Simon de Montfort defeats Raymond of Toulouse and Peter II of Aragon at Muret, France.
Henry Hudson sails into what is now New York Harbor aboard his sloop Half Moon.
Governor Berkley of Virginia is denied his attempts to repeal the Navigation Acts.
A combined Austrian and Polish army defeats the Turks at Kahlenberg and lifts the siege on Vienna, Austria.
The Treaty of St. Petersburg puts an end to the Russo-Persian War.
Despite his failed efforts to suppress the American Revolution, Lord Cornwallis is appointed governor general of India.
Mexican authorities crush the revolt which broke out on August 25.
British troops retake Havincourt, Moeuvres, and Trescault along the Western Front.
Adolf Hitler joins the German Workers’ Party.
In response to the invasion of Poland, the French Army advances into Germany. On this day they reach their furthest penetration-five miles.
Italian forces begin an offensive into Egypt from Libya.
The Lascaux Caves in France, with their prehistoric wall paintings, are discovered.
American troops fight their way into Germany.
French troops land in Indochina.
Nixon orders a resumption in bombing North Vietnam.
Steve Biko, a South African activist opposing apartheid, dies while in police custody.
A military coup takes place in Turkey.
East and West Germany, along with the UK, the US and the USSR—the Allied nations that had occupied post-WWII Germany—sign the final settlement for reunification of Germany.
The Space Shuttle Endeavor takes off on NASA’s 50th shuttle mission; its crew includes the first African-American woman in space, the first married couple, and the first Japanese citizen to fly in a US spacecraft.
The UN lifts sanctions against Libya in exchange for that country accepting responsibility for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in 1988 and paying recompense to victims’ families.
Joseph Estrada, former president of the Philippines, is convicted of plunder.
In New York City, the 9/11 Memorial Museum opens to the public.

Haunted Hotels

Is there a haunted hotel in your hometown? Historic hotels become haunted because so many different people have slept there over a long period of time, and some those folks go to a hotel to keep nefarious activities out of their own homes. Or else there's an even scarier history in the building's past. For example, take the historic Marshall House in Savannah, Georgia.
The Marshall House used to be a hospital during the Civil War and then a medical ward during yellow fever epidemics. Rumors such as faucets turning on by themselves and sounds of children running down the hallway haunt this hotel. If that isn't enough, many TripAdvisor reviews claim to have had ghost encounters, such as this person who "was woken from a deep sleep by a loud whirring noise that made her hair move. She then heard what sounded like drums from a marching band for a while."
Yeah, that's weird, but it's only one story of 13 from hotels across the US at Buzzfeed. You'll want to remember these while planning your next vacation trip.

Harvest Traditions and Folklore

In olden times, harvesting crops was a community chore, in which everyone had a specific task they specialized in, and the process was laid out by tradition. The corn harvest, as it existed before machinery is described in detail, as well as the customs that made it easier (hint-cider). And the superstitions.
The last sheaf of corn was always saved. This was believed to contain the corn spirit, which was gradually condensed as harvest progressed until it reached the final sheaf to be cut. Often the sheaf was scattered on the fields in spring, returning the spirit to the fields. In some areas it was hung up for the hungry birds to peck on New Year’s Day; in others it was made into a corn dolly. This tradition exists across Europe and it is believed by many in the pagan tradition that this is a relic of the millennia-old belief in the Dying-and-Rising God or God of the Green, who dies in Autumn to be reborn the following Spring.
Read all about a traditional harvest at Foklore Thursday

The Hidden Memories of Plants

Do plants form memories? They don't form new synapses in their brain cells, because they do not have brain cells. But if you look at learning and memory as observed changes in behavior, plants certainly do conform their behavior to changes in their environment. We once thought their behavior was genetic, the result of the survival of the fittest, and that plants either lived or died in the conditions in which they sprout. But experiments show that plants can adapt their behavior to conditions not found in their normal environment -and remember those behavioral adaptations over time. Evolutionary ecologist Monica Gagliano first worked with animals, and when she switched to plant studies, took some of the animal experimental techniques with her in a study on how plants learn and retain their lessons. 
At the center of the experiment was the plant Mimosa pudica, which has a dramatic response to unfamiliar mechanical stimuli: Its leaves fold closed, perhaps to scare away eager herbivores. Using a specially designed rail, Gagliano introduced her M. pudica to a new experience. She dropped them, as if they were on a thrill ride in an amusement park for plants. The mimosa plants reacted. Their leaves shut tight. But as Gagliano repeated the stimulus—seven sets of 60 drops each, all in one day—the plants’ response changed. Soon, when they were dropped, they didn’t react at all. It wasn’t that they were worn out: When she shook them, they still shut their leaves tight. It was as if they knew that being dropped was nothing to freak out about.
Three days later, Gagliano came back to the lab and tested the same plants again. Down they went, and … nothing. The plants were just as stoic as before.
This was a surprise. In studies of animals such as bees, a memory that sticks for 24 hours is considered long-term. Gagliano wasn’t expecting the plants to keep hold of the training days later. “Then I went back six days later, and did it again, thinking surely now they forgot,” she says. “Instead, they remembered, exactly as if they had just received the training.”
This kind of learning is what plants do to the best of their ability, in order to survive in a world with changing temperatures, amount of sunlight, and water supply. But how? Is it genetic, epigenetic, or some secret chemical process? Read about the research into plant memory at Atlas Obscura.

There is no one reason for why alcoholics drink

What drives alcoholics to drink? Recently, a team from The Mayo Clinic considered this question, and found that the answer is like a lot of relationship statuses: it's complicated. Everything from gender to current mood can play a role in a drinker’s motivation to abuse alcohol. In response, the team suggest that alcoholism treatment should be as varied as the backgrounds of those it aims to help.

Famous Philosophers Who Took Psychedelics and Pronounced It Mind-Changing

Maternal Care Is Going Extinct in Rural America

These Insulting Terms Could Make You Sound Racist

‘Your boobs are bigger – you have to try harder’

A Missouri teen’s mother is furious with school officials who she says singled out her daughter for punishment and public humiliation for an utterly normal outfit.

Take pity on forensic scientists ...

A blackmailer steals a compromising letter from a woman of high standing. The police know he is keeping this letter in his home, but they cannot find it. Using the latest forensic tools they search every inch of the apartment, recording their efforts as follows:
We examined the rungs of every chair …. and, indeed, the jointings of every description of furniture, by the aid of a most powerful microscope. Had there been any traces of recent disturbance we should not have failed to detect it instantly.
A single grain of gimlet-dust, for example, would have been as obvious as an apple. Any disorder in the glueing – any unusual gaping in the joints – would have sufficed to insure [sic] detection.
Back in 1844, this description of the police using a powerful microscope with the promise of instant detection would have dazzled readers of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Purloined Letter. Yet this is not what solves the mystery. Instead the private investigator, Auguste Dupin, correctly surmises that the best place to hide such a letter is in plain sight. He finds it on the blackmailer’s mantelpiece.
The story is one of the earliest and best examples of crime fiction. It suggests that science and technology are sometimes not as powerful as empathy or intuition in solving crimes. Indeed, Poe queries science throughout his writings. In one poem he calls it a vulture that preys on the poet’s heart, replacing the magic of a writer’s imagination with its “dull realities”.

Protecting the Lynchers

A group of white teens attacked an 8-year-old biracial boy and hung him from a noose, his family says, and police in Claremont, NH are refusing to release information in the case.

Black Driver Bravely Shames Cop Who Drew His Gun Over A Turn Signal Infraction

When you are Black in America, getting pulled over by a cop – even for the smallest infraction – is a very scary thing. As we have seen repeatedly,...

Fox Viewers Go Berserk After Smith Preempts Fox & Friends For Storm Coverage

Egads ... How dare Reality penetrate the wingnut bubble!

Why people believe in conspiracy theories

I’m sitting on a train when a group of football fans streams on. Fresh from the game – their team has clearly won – they occupy the empty seats around me. One picks up a discarded newspaper and chuckles derisively as she reads about the latest “alternative facts” peddled by Dumbass Trump.
The others soon chip in with their thoughts on the Dumbass’ fondness for conspiracy theories. The chatter quickly turns to other conspiracies and I enjoy eavesdropping while the group brutally mock flat Earthers, chemtrails memes and Gwyneth Paltrow’s latest idea.

Is 'The Handmaid’s Tale’ Coming True?

Big Corporations Shamelessly Gouging Their Customers This Hurricane Season

One Major Lesson From the Disastrous Floods Around the World

Bear vs. Flamingo

A baby bear crashed the party, and everyone else had to move indoors. As expected, mama bear wasn't too far behind! If you an adult, you may feel a little nervous at how much noise all these kids are making in front of the bears. Baby bear was a little disappointed no one wanted to play with him, until he saw the pink flamingo-shaped pool float. That's what he'll play with!
Everyone inside was just waiting to see the flamingo deflate, but mama bear was in a hurry to leave, so baby bear just took it with him.

Animal Pictures