The San Francisco Zoo is running what they call a Valentine's Day special: the adoption of a Madagascar hissing cockroach or a giant hairy scorpion. Why? To honor your ex, of course.
A zoo donation of $25 will not only aid conservation efforts for the species you select, but it also pays for an adoption certificate with the name of your ex on it, along with a small plush scorpion or several plastic cockroaches in "a cute little red box." Just the thing for sending to your former love interest cum creepy crawler! The zoo's website describes the scorpion adoption as follows,
"So the latest affair didn't work out and given your ex's record-breaking ability to move on, you suspect foul play. Well, nothing soothes the sting like the adoption of a giant hairy scorpion in honor of your former beloved. It's no surprise, these invertebrates are aggressive, active, and alarmingly nocturnal. Much like your low-life ex, they are usually found in and around low-elevation valleys where they dig elaborate burrows or "caves." Also just like you-know-who, when a suitable victim wanders by, the scorpion grabs the doomed creature with its pinchers and stings the prey. After the prey is immobilized, the scorpion tears the carcass apart with its pinchers and begins feeding. Charming... We can't make any promises, but urban legend says that the gift of a scorpion adoption serves as permanent protection against future romantic stings. Let the healing begin."
Little Sam Burnett firsr heard Devo's song Whip It when he was about two years old, and he couldn't get enough. The experience had a huge effect on him, and he began to obsess over 1980s pop music after that.
The next song that Sam's mom (also an 80s pop enthusiast) intoduced him to was Hold Me Now by the Thompson Twins. Sam became hooked on the genre. He even created a drawing that illustrated the song, and has been doing it ever since. Take a look at Sam's drawings over the years. His charming visual interpretations of the music are classics.
See a bigger collection of Sam's 80s music artwork here.
Everybody is always talking about those xenomorphic facehuggers that look like alien bugs, but what about the furry facehuggers that we've let into our homes? They're not looking to lay eggs in your abdomen, or spread terror throughout the galaxy, they just really like the way your warm breath feels on their tummies! Cats are already taking over the interwebs, and before you know it they'll have taken over the universe, so get those faces ready for a hugging humanity!
Give the world a geeky hug with this Facehuggers t-shirt by Matt Parsons, and share your twisted sense of humor with the world!
There are degrees of stolenness. Something can be just a smidgen stolen. Something else can be fairly well stolen. Or, in more extreme cases, an item can be very stolen or even profoundly stolen. The gradations can be subtle, but they are not invisible.
Alas, for this woman in Sandestin, Florida, police did not accept her argument that the truck she was in was not as stolen as they believed. The Daily News reports:
When officers pointed out that she knew the vehicle had been stolen, she replied, “I didn’t think it was that stolen,” according to the report.
She is charged with grand theft of a motor vehicle.
Children make up a particularly gullible audience, so its very tempting to impress them with whatever nonsense you want to concoct, and sometimes those tall tales have a positive effect. Or one like this could just as easily scar them for life. This tall tale was inspired by a real-life train ride with children. It was produced by British animation studio Kilogramme, which had already produced another episode of tall tales you can see here. -via Geeks Are Sexy
Italy plans to send an espresso machine to the International Space Station later this year, which has prompted this innovative cup design. Astronauts usually suck liquids out of containers with tubes. But that’s a terrible way to drink fine Italian coffee. Espresso should be sipped from an espresso cup. This cup developed by researchers at Portland State University can permit precisely that, even in very low gravity. Liz Stinson writes for Wired:
The cup’s shape is odd—a little like a plastic baby boot—and was determined by mathematical models. Every curve and geometric shape is designed to encourage the controlled movement of liquid. You’ll notice a pointed corner in the center of the cup; this strange bit of design is what makes it possible to drink liquids in low gravity. The corner essentially acts like a wick, using surface tension to guide liquid toward your mouth. As soon as an astronaut touches her mouth to the lip of the cup, a capillary connection is formed and the liquid travels up the vessel and forms sippable balls of coffee.
It sounds simple enough, but designing a cup for space requires a deep understanding of how fluids move in low gravity. “We’re geeks, and we make spacecraft fluid systems,” says Mark Weislogel, a professor of mechanical and mechanical engineering who is leading the research. “It’s like space plumbing.
Tales born in the confusion of battle can sometimes grow and change considerably by the time they get to you, particularly stories from long long ago. The old saying “History is written by the winners” holds true also, because accounts from the battlefield can be used for political purposes. Some are attempts to explain unexpected victories or defeats. Other stories just grew like any other strange tale. For all these reasons, war is full of urban legends, like the one about the White Tights.
According to Russian legend, the White Tights – or beliye kolgotky – are blonde, beautiful women who are as deadly as they are attractive. The stories began to circulate during the Chechen Wars, when men would tell of a group of women hired as assassins, targeting anyone they’re paid to dispatch.
The legend gives them something of a background, too. They’re reputed to be members of a biathlon team, doing their training right out in the open where they’re groomed for long-distance marathons that end with putting a bullet in someone. They’re also said to be originally from the Baltic states, born with a grudge against Russia that makes them the perfect, cold-blooded killers.
Russian soldiers would report their units receiving radio transmissions from the women, giving them fair warning that they were coming. Their goals were often to wound the regular soldiers and kill the officers – not with a head shot, but with a shot to the groin.
It’s one story that definitely walks the line between truth and fiction, and when members of the Russian Biathlon Federation issued a statement saying that their athletes absolutely weren’t a part of the secret society of assassins, it’s said that they had to double-check first just to make sure. There’s a historical basis for the idea, too – as far back as the Russian Civil War in 1918 women were often employed as snipers. They were patient, they were calculating, and it was easier for them in infiltrate certain areas – especially if they were armed with a child. But the White Tights take the idea of a secret group of deadly, beautiful blonde women who can kill with a single shot to a whole new level.
Monday was Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day, one of the more under-appreciated holidays on the American cultural calendar. Rarely will employers give workers a day off on this most hallowed of occasions (I’m looking at you, Alex).
But the five men behind the YouTube channel Dude Perfect celebrated the correct way. They took a pilgrimage to the headquarters of the Sealed Air Corporation in Charlotte, North Carolina. This is that wondrous place where bubble wrap is born. There, like in the Olympics of old, the five dudes undertook athletic competitions in honor of bubble wrap.
Almost-two-year-old Violet Pietrok’s facial bones didn’t fuse together prenatally, leaving her with a syndrome called Tessier Cleft. Her eyes were so far apart that she couldn’t see properly, and her nose had no cartilage. Dr. John Meara at Boston Children’s Hospital wanted to help Violet. He had done this kind of surgery before, but every patient is different, and the bone reconstruction will be different for each one. That’s where 3D printing comes in. Dr. Meara had his colleague Dr. Peter Weinstock made 3D models of the toddler’s skull, using data from magnetic resonance imaging. Meara was able to practice with four skull models, in order to develop the best plan for Violet’s surgery ahead of time.
Dr. Weinstock, the director of the Pediatric Simulator Program at Boston Children’s, sees 3-D models as part of a larger program to improve surgical craft. At Children’s and a dozen other pediatric centers around the world, he says, the surgical simulation program he developed improves team communication and trust, and lifts confidence before extremely complex operations. He believes it also shortens patients’ time under anesthesia.
If the nearly two-year-old program has prevented even one major medical error — and Dr. Weinstock is convinced it has prevented many — it has paid for itself and its $400,000 3-D printer, running nearly full time in the hospital’s basement.
I have never taken a selfie, so I am very, very far behind Patrick Peterson, a cornerback on the Arizona Cardinals football team. He’s a fast actor with both a football and a cellphone. On Tuesday, Peterson secured a Guinness World Record by taking 1,449 selfies with a cellphone in just one hour. That’s one every 3.1 seconds.
Peterson performed the feat at Deer Valley High School in Glendale, Arizona. His attempt blew away the old record of 657 established by Lee Goodfellow in Glasgow, Scotland last year.
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Su Daocheng is a farmer in a China and a self-taught mechanical genius. He built this gas engine-powered horse to help him plow his fields, but I honestly don’t see him getting a lot of that done, at least in this version. That fact that he actually built it himself is pretty neat, yet when it starts walking, you’ll laugh out loud just like I did. Later in the video, you’ll get to see more of Su’s kinetic sculptures. -via Boing Boing
Someone in Tampa, Florida hit Bart the cat with a car. He was lying, apparently lifeless, in a pool of his own blood in the road when his owner, Ellis Hutson, found him. Hutson dug a hole and buried Bart. He and his family mourned the loss of Bart.
But Bart wasn't done yet. He had unfinished business.
5 days after he had been buried, Bart returned home, hungry, bloody, and dehydrated. Bart lost an eye, has deep lacerations, and a broken jaw. But he's alive.
How is Bart still alive? Hutson's neighbor, Dusty Albritton, has no idea:
“I saw him with my own eyes. I know he was dead. He was cold and stiff,” Albritton told ABC News. […]
“Now my kids believe their cat will also rise from the dead," she said with a chuckle. "But I told them I don't think so."
When she discovered the resurrected Bart, she said he acted “like he’s in no pain whatsoever.”
Wade had finally started hanging out with the comic book in crowd when the zombie apocalypse swept through the nerd con like a bad stench. Suddenly fanboys and geek girls were chewing on each other like tacos, and Pool was left wondering what to do with all those walking dead dudes. He decided it was time to hack some heads, but before he could start chopping those cads down he came face to face with his idols- the bespectacled badass Stan and his lowly pencil pusher Rob...
Add some dead cool style to your geeky wardrobe with this Walking With Rob and Stan t-shirt by Chip Skelton, it costs about the same as four tacos but this shirt does a way better job of satisfying your hunger for geeky goodness!
“Why are you black?” If you’re a black person visiting China, you may get asked this question. This fascinating video by TMD Shanghai shares the experience of being a black visitor to China, which historically has had few black residents.
For African American visitors, it gets even stranger. The narrator explains that many Chinese believe that all black people are from Africa, so African Americans are not native English speakers.
Seventy years ago, on January 27th, 1945, the Soviet army liberated the Auschwitz network of concentration camps. Survivors and dignitaries gathered at the site in Poland, preserved as a museum since 1947, to mark the anniversary. About 300 camp survivors attended, shown here on their way to light candles at Birkenau. Since they are elderly, this is believed to be the last major commenoration attendance for most of them.
A huge, white temporary building has been erected over the brick railway buildings where many of the Jews of Europe were sorted into those who were fit enough for slave labour and those who would be taken straight to the gas chambers.
Candles have been lit at the Death Wall where prisoners were executed - small points of light in this wintry landscape of snow and ice, where Europe is remembering a time of darkness.
A large number of apparently first-time parents gather at the neighborhood park to defend their baby care choices by snarking at those who have selected a different path. I say they must be first-time parents because there’s no older kids with them, and by the time you’ve have several kids, you might tend to be less defensive and judgmental. (Then I wonder, why would you take an infant to a park?) Such dogmatism is one of the main reasons I stay away from mommy blogs and parenting forums. Chill out, moms (and dads)! -via Buzzfeed
During her lifetime, Tucson, Arizona philanthropist Pat Arnell has collected a wide array of ornate, high-quality miniatures. Five years ago, Arnell opened a museum to exhibit her collection to the public: the Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniature. There, visitors can find this beautiful work by the American miniaturist W. Foster Tracy. It is a 1:8 scale representation of an Eighteenth Century violin maker’s workshop set inside a full-size violin. This is 1 of 6 copies that Tracy made in 1979.
You remember that “documentary” about Megalodon that headlined Shark Week a couple of years ago, don’t you? It kind of ruined the whole idea of Shark Week for many viewers, because we know that Megalodon is extinct, yet the entire production hinted at how they may be roaming our oceans today. Just like “reality TV,” the term “documentary” has been tossed around enough lately that we don’t even agree on what the term means. Do recreations of past events belong in a documentary? Well, that may be okay. How about real subjects being manipulated into acting a certain way? How far can you go before it crosses over into “drama”? The A.V. Club tells us about six documentaries you may have heard of -or even seen- and the charges leveled against their authenticity. Then they pass judgement on each, and it ain’t pretty. Internet hoaxes have made us all cynical, but maybe that’s a good thing.
Foodies get mighty attached to their favorite food products, and we continue to search online and check in with local stores “just in case” long after our favorite products have disappeared from store shelves.
Sometimes it’s hard to accept that you’re never going to get to eat another P.B. Crisp, or take another satisfying sip of an ice cold Ecto Cooler, and the cupboards look mighty empty without your fav food products of yesteryear.
Redditor emlod takes lots of video of his cat, Luna. She’s three years old, but still has the heart of a kitten. He made a compilation of her craziest cat behavior, which encompasses the stuff we see on individual viral cat videos: climbing, jumping, sneaking around, napping, drinking out of the faucet, chasing tiny things, play fighting, not landing on all fours, hiding, ninja attacks, miaows, and making biscuits.
So, I'm not a vet, but I've done a lot of internet research on my own cats. This cat appears to have a full blown case of Nut Butt, with probable early onset Furry Ninjitus. I'm sad to say I'm also seeing some indication of an infection of cinnimonbunius patikakius, known to the common man as Biscuit Makers disease.
As he's a young cat I'd advise treats, sun beams for naps, and maybe some more rugs so he stops slipping around so much and looking like a dingus.
Need to cut a path through the snow? Maybe you should get an auto sleigh. Even in the early years of automobiles, people were converting their cars into self-powered sleighs. One common arrangement was to place the car on skids and tie the engine drive into one or two helical screws. Pictured above is a converted Hupmobile Model 20 Torpedo Roaster. Below is a patent drawing for a similar car design filed by Charles E.S. Burch of Seattle in 1907. You can read more about these cars at The Old Motor.
BuzzFeed put together this video of various coffee concoctions from countries all across the globe. Some are iced, some are hot, all are decidedly different than anything you'll get in most American coffee shops. Have you tried any of the recipes included here? If so, weigh in with your review in the comments. (I'll be over in the corner with my tea.) -Via Viral Viral Videos
He's not that Casey from Mudville who went up to bat and struck out, but if you know someone who needs a baseball bat upside their head he's the man for the job! Casey leads a pretty weird life- he hangs around mutants, wears a hockey mask while patrolling the streets like some kind of psycho, and doesn't mind eating pizza in the sewer. But without Casey and his hockey sticks out there helping take down the Foot clan the ninja turtles wouldn't be the heroes in a half shell they are today!
Take your wardrobe down to geek street with this Jones t-shirt by Cory Freeman Design, it's one cool slick way to pay homage to the greatest vigilante to ever sport a hockey mask!
The following is an article from The Annals of Improbable Research.
A glance at the colorful research of an under-publicized scientist by Alice Shirrell Kaswell, with research assistance from Rachael Moeller Gorman
John W. Trinkaus is the rare researcher whose interests and activities suggest the famous passage in Lewis Carroll’s poem “The Walrus and The Carpenter”:
“The time has come,” the Walrus said, “To talk of many things: Of shoes — and ships — and sealing-wax — Of cabbages — and kings — And why the sea is boiling hot — And whether pigs have wings.”
For Trinkaus, of the Zicklin School of Business, Bernard M. Baruch College, City University of New York, such a diversity of topics is the norm. During the past 25 years he has conducted research on shoes — and trains — and bakery wrapping-tissues — on Brussels sprouts — and business students — and why commuters carry attaché cases — and whether most people wear base ball-type caps with the bill facing backwards. These are just a few of his interests.
John Trinkaus has published a modest corpus of reports, of which the 86 papers described below are a healthy sampling. On many topics, Trinkaus returned over and again, both to replicate his findings and to delve deeper.
For a full appreciation of John Trinkaus’s body of work, one must go to the library and read the original reports in their full detail. For those who have yet to enjoy that experience, here is a quick, and rather haphazard, sampling of what to expect.
The Early Years Trinkaus’s first published paper — a 1978 examination of the motivations of potential jurors — is of interest to scholars of that subject, of course, but it is also of larger significance. So far as we are aware, this was the first of his signature pieces — each modestly claiming to be an “Informal Look” at some dazzlingly under-explored subject. Even at this early stage of his career, Trinkaus was conducting multiple lines of research, and publishing on an unusual variety of topics.
* * *
(1) “Jury Service: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Psychological Reports, vol. 43, no. 3, part 1, December 1978, p.788.
Used participant observation to study 56 potential jurors... Results support the contention of W. Pabst et al. (1976) that potential jurors are divided into those who do and those who do not want to serve.
(2) “Workers’ Arrivals and Departures: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Psychological Reports, vol. 44, no. 2, April 1979, p. 554.
Suggests that rank-and-file employees do not arrive at the workplace much before the starting time and depart as quickly as possible after the quitting time. Owner-managers, conversely, arrive early and leave late. These assumptions were supported by informal observations of the arrival and departure of ”luxury” cars, assumed to belong to the owner-managers, and ”economy” cars, assumed to belong to the employees, at a suburban industrial parking site.
(3) “Buyers’ Price Perception at a Flea Market: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Psychological Reports, vol. 46, no. 1, February 1980, p. 266.
Investigated whether buyers at flea markets would display a high degree of price awareness. An informal inquiry showed this not to be the case.
(4) “Preconditioning an Audience for Mental Magic: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Perceptual and Motor Skills, vol. 51, no.1, August 1980, p. 262.
(5) “Honesty at a Motor Vehicle Bureau: An Informal Look,” J. Trinkaus, Perceptual and Motor Skills, vol. 51, no. 3, part 2, December 1980, p. 1252.
Assessed the veracity of people taking vision tests at a district office of a motor vehicle bureau.... Results suggest that, when given an option, a sizeable percentage of people may well elect a style of behavior that is neither completely honest nor dishonest.
Taiwanese artist Kare Huang composed this magnificent piece of science fiction (it is fictional, right?) art. The enormous mechanical duck is inscribed with the words “UN Navy” and “Big Rubber Duck.” How does it inspire you? What story or caption can you write for it?
KFC rolled out a new menu item Monday: the Double Down Dog. This carnivore’s concoction consists of a hot dog nestled in a "bun" of breaded fried chicken pieces. You can have yours with a splash of melted cheese or other condiments. But the supply of the Double Down Dogs was limited yesterday to 50 each at 12 outlets in the Philippines, which sold out all 600 of the sandwiches. However, there will be more Tuesday, the last day of the promotion. Will we ever see the Double Down Dog in the U.S.? That may depend on how well it goes over in this limited run. What's the point in putting a hot dog in your fried chicken, anyway?
If you’re a Disney princess, then your job is to always look good at all times. Thankfully, you’ve got a staff of top-notch animators working with you 24/7 to do that. Shoot, you probably have a designated hair person on duty at all times.
What would it be like if Disney princesses had to deal with real hair problems? A lot of their manes would be out of place, soggy, or sticking up in odd directions. Loryn Brantz of BuzzFeed illustrated 8 princesses with real hair, including Cinderella, Jasmine, Mulan, and Elsa.