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Police Officers Buy Family a Car Seat Instead of Issuing a Ticket

(Photo: ABC News)

Officers Jason Pavlige and James Hodges of Fruitport Township, Michigan stopped a couple in a car. The mother was holding a 10-month old baby in her arms instead of securing her properly in a car seat. The officers realized that this couple couldn’t afford to buy a car seat.

So instead of writing them a ticket, they took the family to a nearby Walmart and bought a car seat. They showed the couple how to install it properly, then left. The incident would have escaped further notice, except that a Walmart employee called the police to praise Officers Pavlige and Hodges for their generosity. ABC News (warning: auto-start video) reports:

“It was only brought to our attention by a clerk at Walmart who saw it and thought they should be recognized,” Fruitport Township Police Lt. Bruce Morningstar told ABC News. “They were doing it on their own without any recognition.”

Hodges says the incident was just another day on the job in the life of a police officer.

“We made the decision that was what we needed to do to solve the issue,” Hodges said. “When we left we went onto the next call.”

“It’s just part of what police officers do on a daily basis,” he said.

-via Popehat


The Best Opening Paragraph Ever

(Oh No! It Was Rocket Science t-shirt at the NeatoShop)

Debby Witt of the blog VA Viper spotted this article published a year ago in The Atlantic. It refers to a now legendary incident in which a drunken college student attempted to launch a rocket from his bottom. Witt suggests that author Caitlin Flanagan may have composed one of the best opening paragraphs ever. I’m inclined to agree. Behold Flanagan’s genius:

One warm spring night in 2011, a young man named Travis Hughes stood on the back deck of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity house at Marshall University, in West Virginia, and was struck by what seemed to him—under the influence of powerful inebriants, not least among them the clear ether of youth itself—to be an excellent idea: he would shove a bottle rocket up his ass and blast it into the sweet night air. And perhaps it was an excellent idea. What was not an excellent idea, however, was to misjudge the relative tightness of a 20-year-old sphincter and the propulsive reliability of a 20-cent bottle rocket. What followed ignition was not the bright report of a successful blastoff, but the muffled thud of fire in the hole.

That woman knows how to write!


3 Year-Old Rocks Wonder Woman Costume on Her Last Day of Chemo

Sophia Sandoval says of chemotherapy “It was tough, but I was tougher.” She’s made it through treatments for a brain tumor. Lynda Carter, the actress who played Wonder Woman on the 1970s television series, calls Sophia “A real-life WW!!”

-via Huffington Post


Happy New Year, Neatoramanauts!


Image: All For You/Shutterstock

Happy New Year, Neatoramanauts! All of us here at Neatorama and Neatoshop wish you a happy and safe New Year 2015. We hope that the new year will bring you many blessings, joy and happiness!


Elephants Rush to Help Baby After Fall

YouTube Link

Examples abound of elephants and their caring, nurturing behavior, especially toward their young. This video shows two adults rushing to the aid of a baby who has lost his footing and lays on his back, struggling to right himself. The footage was shot by a visitor to the Zurich Zoo.  It's hard to fathom the poaching and cruelty with which these noble, intelligent creatures are targeted. -Via Tastefully Offensive


Thirteen Misconceptions About Global Warming

YouTube Link

Global warming: a topic that is often hotly contested. Science video blog Veritassium has compiled this video to present some facts for perusal. At the very least, it might be handy to bookmark for when the holidays hit and you're looking to cool down the arguments between your relatives who are political polar opposites, before they come to blows. -Via Science Dump


200 Years Ago Today: The Battle of Baltimore and the Star-Spangled Banner

(Photo of fireworks over Ft. Henry by Rich Dennison/The Daily Record)

Today is the bicentennial of a seminal event in the formation of the American national identity. Two hundred years ago today, Americans at Baltimore halted a foreign invasion of their nation while standing beneath a flag that would become known as the Star-Spangled Banner.

This is my third post on the bicentennial of the War of 1812--a war that some historians refer to as America’s second war of independence. Although Britain did not want to completely conquer and rule its rebellious colonies once again, it hoped to reduce America into a shadow of its former self--one that could be more easily coerced and managed from across the Atlantic.

(The burned White House by George Munger, White House Historical Association)

The British grand strategy was to tie down America’s limited military resources on the Eastern seaboard and New Orleans while driving a decisive blow down the Lake Champlain-Hudson River corridor. In August and September of 1814, the British acted on their plan. First, they burned down the capital city of the United States. Then they moved into Lake Champlain in the direction of New York City.

(Major General Robert Ross and Vice Admiral Alexander Cochrane, respectively)

In this post, we depart from the wilderness of northern New York and return to Chesapeake Bay. Major General Robert Ross, the British Army commander, and Admirals Cockburn and Cochrane, had torched Washington, D.C.--an act that both humiliated and enraged Americans. They had hoped that burning the capital would make the American people despair of the struggle and give up the fight.

They were wrong.

(Modern replicas of two War of 1812-era privateers, The Pride of Baltimore and the Lynx, photo by the US Navy)

So Cochrane, as the senior British officer in the theater, had to decide where to strike next. He seriously considered an invasion of Rhode Island. But nearby Baltimore, then one of the largest cities in America, was a more promising target. During the war, it was a major base of operations for American privateers. Approximately 500 captured British merchant vessels had been sailed into its harbor, which is why Cochrane’s subordinate, Admiral Cockburn, described Baltimore as a “nest of pirates.” Destroying Baltimore would do serious harm to the American economy as well as avenge what the British perceived as a grievous wrong perpetrated by the Americans. And after so easily destroying Washington, why not continue their campaign just a bit further north?

Continue reading

Firefighters Comfort Grieving Widow by Mowing the Lawn Her Husband Was Cutting When He Died

(Photo: Ashley Odom Chandler)

John McCormick of Baytown, Texas was mowing his lawn when he had a heart attack. His family summoned emergency responders. A fire truck followed the ambulance, which took him to the hospital. The firefighters could do nothing to immediately contribute to McCormick's health. But they could finish what they started. So the firefighters quietly mowed the lawn, locked the mower away in the garage, then left the key in the mailbox.

(Photo: City of Baytown)

The firefighters also left a note expressing their sympathy. It's pictured above. Sadly, McCormick did not survive. But the firefighters' simple act of kindness meant a lot to the family:

"I just couldn't believe it," said Patsy McCormick of the firefighter's gesture. "I just couldn't believe they took the time to do that."

"It just speaks to their character," said son-in-law Dan Blackford. "They say honor is doing the right thing when nobody's looking. That's a fact," he said of the firefighters who didn't know someone captured their gesture on camera. "They were very honorable."

"This just shows just exactly how special they really are," said Jeana Blackford who, despite the grief over losing her father wanted to publicly thank the men of Station 4 for showing everyone the impact a single random act of kindness can have. And for showing everyone that going above and beyond the call of duty, whether a firefighter or a civilian in everyday life, often just takes a few more steps.

"I think we all need to do random acts of kindness every day, every day," she said.

-via I Own the World


Photographer Takes Beautiful Photos of Her One-Handed Daughter

Holly Springs is a photographer in Auckland, New Zealand. Her daughter was born without a left hand and has struggled with Hirschsprung's Disease. She's an inspiration to her mother, who describes the child as "my muse and my heart." To share her muse with the world, Springs photographs her at play in worlds both real and fantastic. The bottom image is particularly impressive, so it's not surprising that it won Springs an Iris Award from the New Zealand Institute of Professional Photography.

You can see more of her work at Bored Banda.

-via 123 Inspiration


Cyclist Gets Hit by Car, Flies through the Air, But Somehow Lands on His Feet


(Video Link)

YouTube member CycleJack was pedaling through Romford, Essex, UK on a wet day. He was traveling about 22 MPH. A car cut across his path and he hit the fender. CycleJack flew over the car, head over heels, but landed neatly on his feet. It was an impressive bit of unintentional acrobatics caught on camera.

And it's a good thing that CycleJack was wearing a camera. The driver tried to dispute that she was at fault. The video footage took care of that problem:

Safe to say the video has saved me a lot of hassle and 3 weeks later the cheque has already arrived from the insurance company.

Content warning: CycleJack uses a bit of foul language when the car hits. But who can blame him?

-via Gawker


5 Awesome "Graffitrees": Graffiti with Actual Trees


Afro Taino by Gabriel Abreu in San Cristobal, Dominican Republic

Great graffiti happens when the artists don't get stumped. Instead, they go out on a limb to incorporate site-specific elements into their artwork (What? Yew don't like tree graffitis or tree puns? Ya poor sap - Just leaf now)

Here are some poplar examples of great tree graffiti (or should we call them graffitree?)

Nuxono Xän, Fort de France, Martinique

Forget comb! If you have hair this big, you'd need a rake! Street artist Nuxono Xän added a humorous touch to this wall in Fort de France, Martinique. Photo by Rosali Rodriguez - via Street Art Utopia.

Continue reading

Newly Commissioned Marine Visits Sick Grandpa to Offer Her First Salute


(Photo: Marty Teufel)

2nd Lt. Taylor Batye is a recent graduate of the US Naval Academy and a newly-commissioned officer in the Marine Corps. The Naval Academy maintains certain traditions for the first salute of a graduate. Batye wanted her first salute to go to her grandfather, retired Army Sgt. Maj. David Teufel.

Unfortunately, Teufel was too ill to attend Batye's graduation in Annapolis. He was in an intensive care unit in a hospital in Missouri. So Batye drove 16 hours from Maryland to Missouri to exchange her first salute with her grandfather. The Marine Corps Times reports:

On Sunday, Batye’s mom, Marty Teufel, snapped a photo as the newly minted Marine officer got the salute for which she had waited.

“I wish you could’ve seen the emotion when she walked in in uniform and said, ‘Give me my salute, grandpa,’ ” Marty Teufel told Marine Corps Times.

When Batye arrived, three of the nurses on staff in the ICU joined the family to see the exchange. Teufel has since requested that the photo be blown up and framed so he can keep it by his bed, Marty said.

-via I Own the World


Rap Battle: Newton vs. Nye and Tyson

(YouTube link)

This is what you may call old school vs. new school in the Epic Rap Battles of History series when Sir Isaac Newton raps against Bill Nye the Science Guy with help from Neil deGrasse Tyson. No matter how much you like Nye and Tyson, they are operating under a handicap here because Newton is played by Weird Al Yankovic, whose musical talent and experience give him quite the edge in a rap battle. Or something like that. -via Geeks Are Sexy


One Last Trip to the Forest

After a long illness, Ed was diagnosed as terminal, and was referred to Evergreen Hospice of Kirkland, Washington. He confided to their chaplain that he longed to see the outdoors again, because he’d been inside for several years. See, Ed had been a forest ranger, a job he dearly loved. Chaplain Curt Huber contacted the Snohomish County Fire District in Edmonds, to see if they could help.

In March, Curt and the RN Case Manager, Leigh Gardner, accompanied Ed and several members of the Snohomish County Fire District on an outing to Meadowdale Beach Park in Edmonds. Ed was picked up and transported in the EMS vehicle; other members of the fire department traveled in a fire truck.

Together, the group took Ed up and down the trails, bringing him the scents of the forest by touching the fragrant growth and bringing their hands close to Ed’s face.

Ed was delighted. So were all the professionals who accompanied him.

-via Buzzfeed

(Image credit: Evergreen Hospice Volunteers)


Mariusz Goli's Street Improvisation

(YouTube link)

Guitarist Mariusz Goli plays on the streets of Katowice, Poland. According to his biography, Goli plays in clubs and does concerts, but prefers busking because he gets the greatest satisfaction by direct contact with the audience. You can see plenty more videos of Goli’s music at his Facebook page or his YouTube channel. -via Viral Viral Videos


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Profile for Joseph Francis

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