The entire affair is, in my own humble opinion, a brilliant hoax. The story that is told is worthy of some of the best science fiction and the document scans and photos that accompany it look and feel "real" for the most part. If there is one standout flaw within the scanned documents it is in the introductory passages in the "QA-86 Research Report" which comes off to this former technical writer as a bullshit vehicle for seeding buzzwords into the story and not as anything truly informative.
you find a shop with a security guard - you take your tag and set off the alarm - you aint nicked nothing but theyll still chase ya - when you get to the nearest burger bar, the clock stops. And thats how you play urban sprinting!
Of course, in the States, they'll just tazer you. Hit play or go to Link [YouTube] - via reddit
A Cook County jury ordered Blinov to shell out $4,802 last week after he was sued by a husband from a Chicago suburb for stealing the affections of the man's wife.
Arthur Friedman used a little-known state law to mount the legal attack against Blinov. The alienation of affection law, one of eight across the country, lets spouses seek damages for the loss of love.
The "Ms. Homeland Security: Illegal Entry Dress Tent," by Robin Lasser and Adrienne Pao, who write:
... the Illegal Entry Dress Tent, originally installed beneath the California/Mexico border, contains military blankets embroidered with the names of those who have lost their lives crossing the border. Those who seek refuge beneath the skirt are implicated with their own relationship to border issues. In this way, the dress tents address body and land politics as they interface with the nomadic nature of contemporary life.
This is an advertising campaign for the Neunkirchen Zoo in Germany. The promotion team walking the dog handed out discount coupons for the zoo, with the slogan â€œCome to the zoo before the zoo comes to you.â€ The campaign resulted in a 15% attendance increase over an average month. Link -via the Presurfer
This has nothing to do with football! Since the US Mint started the state quarter series, there is quite a variety of designs on our twenty-five cent pieces. Can you identify the states by the quarters? Link
Casey (who sent us the recluse spider bite post a while ago) is doing it again: this time, I'll post this up as a public notice on the dangers of playing with fireworks. I have a cousin who could have easily lost his foot in a fireworks accident.
Please leave the fireworks extravaganza to the professionals: Link (Warning: graphic images of wounds) - Thanks Casey!
In college, John Place developed a memory technique that helped him memorize 70 full pages (23,000 words) of his psychology textbook! Here's how:
Below is the simpler version of my system, developed to help my pupils pass history, psychology, and other information-heavy tests.
1. First, use a pencil or word processor (I prefer the latter because it’s faster) to type, in complete sentences, any fact you think might appear on the test. Use short sentences because they’re easier to remember. 2. Take your printed notes into a quiet room, shut the door, and eliminate all distractions. 3. Look at the first sentence in your notes and read it out loud. Then, close your eyes and say the sentence without looking at it. 4. Repeat the step above, this time with the first 2 sentences. 5. Next, try it with 3 sentences. Then 4. Repeat until you have memorized every sentence in your notes.
Read the full instruction at John's blog: Link - Thanks ... er, who sent this one in again? Oh, yeah - Thanks Fayyaad!
Today's collaboration with the always-awesome Cellar Image of the Day brings us this photo of a strange house hewn out of a sandstone cliff and caves: the Rock Cottage in Worcestershire, England. If you fancy Flintstones-style (Hobbit-style?) living, it can be yours when it goes to auction next week.
Link | More photos of the interior of the Rock Cottage: Link - Be sure to visit Cellar IotD for more amazing pictures!
STL Loftstyle, a furniture store, has an article about both furniture that discourages the homeless and furniture that helps the homeless get a nightâ€™s sleep. Pictured is the ParaSite project, which uses exhaust from HVAC units to keep a sleeper warm on the street. Link -via Reddit
That's a dolphin balancing on the head of a hump back whale. Prize-winning photographer Lori Mazzucca writes:
I was observing a strange interaction between a pair of bottlenose dolphins and a humpback whale, when it became apparent that the two species were collaborating in some way. The dolphin was lying on a humpback whaleâ€™s head while it was slowly swimming along. Looking through my camera lens the stunt appeared to be orchestrated by mutual â€œagreement.â€ The whale very slowlyâ€”and verticallyâ€”lifted the dolphin into the air. I expected the dolphin to wriggle atop the humpbackâ€™s head to get off, but it just laid still and arched, trying to stay on top of the whaleâ€™s snout. In this frame the dolphin was beginning its slippery return to the sea. Once back in the ocean, the dolphin swiftly swam away with the other dolphin, leaping joyfully as if they had just scored a coup!
Artists Cheri Pann & Gonzalo Duran live at the Mosaic Tile House in Venice, California. Purchased in 1994 as a fixer-upper, they began the mosaic tiles in the bathroom. They liked it so much, the project continued room after room! Itâ€™s still not finished, but you can see pictures of some of the rooms. Link -via Grow-A-Brain
Take a look around at a public park before you travel! Virtual Parks is a site by photographer Erik Goetze, featuring 360-degree panoramas of beautiful parks and preserves in the western United States and elsewhere. Link -via Ursiâ€™s Blog
The following is an article from Bathroom Readers' Institute's
The Best of Uncle John's Bathroom Reader
You've probably heard the expression, "If you believe that, I've got a bridge I'd like to sell you"--but do you know the story behind it? The BRI looks at some classic ripoffs.
For Sale: The Brooklyn Bridge
Brooklyn Bridge (Image Credit: dustin3000 [Flickr])
Background: Not long after the Brooklyn Bridge was completed in 1883, a shifty 20-year-old named George C. Parker decided on a whim to see if he could "sell" it to an unsuspecting tourist. He did. In fact, it was so easy that he tried it on someone else a few days later and pulled it off again. He dropped his other cons and went into Brooklyn Bridge sales full-time.
The Scam: His usual approach was to walk up to a "mark," introduce himself as the owner, and offer a job as tolltaker in the tollbooth he was about to build. Parker would then gently guide the conversation to the point where the mark would offer to buy the bridge, set up his own tollbooth, and keep all the toll money for himself. Parker, "more a bridge builder than a toll taker," was happy to have the bridge taken off his hands in exchange for anywhere from $50 to $50,000, depending on how wealthy the tourist looked. And he accepted payments installments when a sucker didn't have enough cash to buy the bridge outright. Some of his victims paid him regularly for months before they realized they'd been had; and more than once, police had to be called to the bridge to prevent its latest "owner" from erecting a toll barrier.
What Happened: Parker specialized in selling the Brooklyn Bridge, but also sold other prominent New York landmarks on the side, including Madison Square Garden, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Grant's Tomb, and even the Statute of Liberty. Amazingly, he remained in business form 1883 to 1928, when he was finally arrested on a swindling charge and sentenced to life in prison. He died in Sing Sing prison--where the other con men treated him like a king--in 1937.
For Rent: The Information Booth in New York's Grand Central Station.
Grand Central Station by W.H. Jackson, 1900 (Image Credit: Library of Congress)
Background: In 1929, as well-dressed man claiming to be "T. Remington Grenfall," vice president of a company called the "Grand Central Holding Corporation," walked into the Fortunato Fruit Company and told the owners, Tony and Nick Fortunato, about a unique real estate opportunity. The man told them that the operators of Grand Central Station had decided to shut down the information booth and refer all inquiries to the ticket sellers. Since the information booth was no longer needed, the station had decided to rent the space out to merchants--fruit merchants.
The Scam: The Fortunatos were at the top of the list. All they had to do was come up with the first year's rent in cash: $2,000 a week for 50 weeks, or $100,000. It seemed like a great opportunity, so the next morning the brothers showed up at the Grand Central Holding Corporation--in a building next door to the train station--and gave the "president" of the company, a man calling himself Wilson A. Blodgett, a cashier's check for $100,000 in exchange for a contract saying they could take over the booth beginning on April 1(April Fools' Day).
On April 1, the brothers--accompanied by several workers and huge supply of lumber--went to Grand Central Station to take possession of the booth and began renovations. The only problem: the information booth employees were still in the booth and refused to leave. Grand Central officials refused to honor the contract and had Fortuato brothers kicked out of the station.
What Happened: Grenfall and Blodgett were never caught, and the Fortunato brothers never got their money back or took possession of the information booth. They did, however, become a semi-regular tourist attraction. For years afterward they returned periodically to the train station to yell at officials and intimidate the clerks in the information booths. New Yorkers began taking out-of-town guest to the station in hopes of witnessing the spectacle.
For Sale: The Eiffel Tower
Eiffel Tower (Image Credit: Prescott [Flickr])
Background: In 1925, a Czech con artist named Victor Lustig read in the newspaper that the Eiffel Tower needed major repairs. The article gave him an idea for a scam, and he set sail for Paris. Posing as "Deputy Director-General of the Ministry of Mail and Telegraphs," he contracted six of the country's largest scrap metal dealers and brought them together for a face-to-face meeting.
The Scam: At the meeting, Lustig told the dealers that the French government had decided the repairs on the Eiffel Tower were too expensive and had also decided to tear the landmark down. Fearing that the public would be furious when it learned of the decision, he told them, the government wanted the story kept a secret until the demolition actually began. After asking the dealers to submit bids for the contract, Lustig pulled one of the men aside and told him that for a $100,000 bribe, he would award him the contract. The dealer went back to his office, got the money and gave it to Lustig, who caught the next train to Vienna.
What Happened: The scrap dealer never reported the scam to the police, so Lustig returned to France and conned a second scrap dealer out of $100,000. This time, the dealer went to the police. But, it was too late, Lustig had already fled to the United States, where he resumed his career as a con artist.
For Sale: Big Ben
Big Ben and the House of Parliament (Image Credit: Christine (bpc) [Flickr])
Background: In a 1920 play, Scottish actor Arthur Ferguson played a gullible American tourist who is swindled by a con man. When the play closed, Ferguson decided to find out if real American tourists were as dumb as the one he's played.
The Scam: World War I had just ended; England's finances were strained to the breaking point. But Ferguson "confided" to American tourists that the fiscal situation was even worse than the British government was letting on, and he had been hired by the Prime Minister to quietly sell off some of London's most famous landmarks to raise cash. Ferguson "sold" just about every London landmark several times over, usually charging $5,000 for Big Ben, $30,000 for Nelson's column in Trafalgar Square, and $10,000 as a down payment for Buckingham Palace.
What Happened: The scam was successful for many years. Finally, so many Americans complained to the U.S. Embassy that Ferguson decided it was time to leave the country. He move to America, where he set up shop selling U.S. landmarks--including the White House, which he rented out for $10,000 a year--to wealthy English tourists.
Ferguson was finally arrested for trying to sell the Statute of Liberty to an Australian for $100,000. He spent five years in prison for the crime.
We've seen pet hippo and pet rhino before on Neatorama, but this one takes the cake (so far): pet hyenas!
Faten Shwaykani and her son Noureddin play with pet hyenas at her house in the suburb of Garamana near Damascus June 27, 2007. Shwaykani's husband is a hunter of dangerous animals which he keeps at their house and farm.
Nathan Walton took an old gallon jug wine bottle, fill it with mineral oil and rubbing alcohol, and heat it up with a 30 W bulb inside a cut out cooking sauce pan and voilà: White Trash Lava Lamp.
Here's my home made lava lamp. The container is simply a gallon jug wine bottle. Because of this, a friend once referred to it as the "White Trash Lava Lamp". The wine was Ernest and Julio Gallo, if I remember correctly. I do remember that it stank to high heavens when I poured it down the sink. Avoid, avoid, avoid. The base is a cheap spun aluminum sauce pan, obtained from the local 99 Cent store. The handle was removed, and a hole was cut in the bottom with a nibbling tool. You'll see no pictures of that. It's remarkably difficult to cut a circle with a nibbler. From there, it was simply a matter of rivetting a socket for a 30 watt appliance bulb onto the inside of the pan and wiring it for 110 VAC.