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June 7, 2009

Gay Penguin Pair Adopt Baby

A pair of mated male penguins at a zoo in Germany took over the care of an egg abandoned by it's biological parents. The gay pair hatched the egg and are doing a good job of caring for their adopted baby according to zoo staff. The zoo has also stated that homosexuality is not uncommon in nature. Find the story here- http://www.metro.co.uk/news/world/article.html?Gay_penguins_hatch_chick&in_article_id=678862&in_page_id=64
Posted By: patty | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (6)
Category:

The Arts: Super Mario

Have you ever wanted to see a collection of Mario fan art that ranged from cartoonish to realist? You can find it at Deviant Art. It even has some interesting Mario cosplay & Mario as a girl art. (This website has a very lenghty and detailed copyright notice, so I didn't feel safe posting any examples here.)
Posted By: fyshstyxx | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (1)
Category: Art, Pop Art, Costumes and Masks, Pop Culture, Videogames

Food in War and Peace

Two videos for D-Day Anniversary Weekend.



Posted By: Paul | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (2)
Category: Anniversary, Food, War, 1940's

It Just Ain’t Natural!

Here's a quick round-up of a few things that I couldn't quite crow-bar into the "Weird Wildlife" category.

If you've any particular aversion to rats, and quite a lot of people have, then Deshnok in India is probably a place best avoided, for there stands the Karni Mata Temple, built a century ago and devoted to the Hindu matriarch Karni Mata. Worshipped as a 14th century incarnation of the goddess Durga, Karni Mata is said to have struck a deal with Yama, the god of death, that all members of her clan would reincarnate as rats so that the clan would remain united. Hence rats in Deshnok are sacred animals, venerated as ancestors, and fed and protected by the locals, so than now thousands of rats scamper over the feet of visitors to the temple (National Geographic).

And it's not only in India that people have built havens for rats, one was once built in British Columbia, though for quite a different reason. Bruce Alexander was studying addiction, and he had a problem. He knew that rats kept in cramped cages or strapped to apparatus that allowed them to dose themselves with drugs, would often do so to the point of self-destruction, but, he thought, could you really blame them? What if the addiction to the drugs was a product of their environment, rather than a reaction to the drug itself? Hence, in the 1970s, Alexander decided to give his rats the best living conditions he could, so he build "Rat Park". It was 95 square-feet in area, and well stocked with food, toys and "private areas" where the rats - who would be of both sexes - could go to mate or give birth. It was then filled with rats who had been forced to consume morphine for 8 weeks prior to the experiment, quite long enough to cause hopeless addiction in standard experiments, who were now offered a choice of pure water, or more morphine. All of them chose water. Nothing Alexander could do would entice them to take the drug, even sweetening it had no effect, only when he added naloxone (a drug that blocks the action of opiates) or diluted the morphine to the point of near impotency, could park rats be tempted to take it (Absolute Astronomy).

Yet another piece of rodent research now, as scientists (sadly not from NIMH) have found that transplanting a human 'language gene' into mice affects the way they communicate with one another. The gene, called foxp2 is one of a small family of genes known to be markedly different in humans compared to apes and other animals, hence may be the genes that are the very core of our humanity, so would putting a humanized gene in a mouse create a talking mouse? Well, no, there's a lot more to our use of language than a single gene, however while the transgenic mice were significantly less curious, they also showed increased growth and plasticity in the speech centres of their brains, and a tendency to use a greater range of frequencies in their calls (NY Times).



More in extended >>
Posted By: Dumbfounded | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (5)
Category: Animals, Languages, Nature, Experiments

Your Historical Daily Loser(s)

Ronald Cousin, Steve Nelon and Jerome Thompson, of Las Vegas, Nevada, along with two underaged pals, decided to try a little breaking and entering. Unfortunately for them, they picked the wrong house. The Story.

Christopher Newton, former reporter for the Associated Press, was fired when it was discovered that he was making up all of his news sources. It only took the AP a few years to catch on... The Story.

Walter Nowakowski, from Canada, was caught driving the wrong way down a one way street. The police say he was distracted. Not such a big deal, you say? How about the fact that he was distracted because he had his pants around his ankles and he was watching child porn on his laptop as he drove. The Story.

If you live in Wrexham, you might want to stay off the roads. Michelle Hughes was arrested after she smashed her car into a parked vehicle and then drove head-on into another. But apparently her erratic driving was caused by her excessive drinking and not because she is legally blind. The Story.

Actually, these guys might be winners for getting away with it... Army and Navy personnel, from the officers down to the enlisted men, were issued travel cards (credit cards paid for by Uncle Sam), and they had a jolly good time using those cards to pay for their visits to brothels and strip clubs. The Story.
Posted By: Nethie | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (7)
Category: Crime, Sex Lives Worse Than Yours, Your Daily Loser, Goofs and Screw-ups

Forgotten and Unseen Electronics Part 11

Back in 2003 a japanese company named Suntory had a contest to win Terminator 3 stuff and one of the prizes was a dvd player shaped like the terminator's head. They only made 500 copies of it and they were all only sold in Japan.



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Posted By: phantomspy1 | Date: Sun Jun 07, 2009 | Comments (2)
Category:

June 6, 2009

Darth Vadar toaster

In a recent post by phantomspy1 you found out how to make toast in your computer.

The computer toaster is less expensive than the Darth Vadar toaster, but you probably know a Star Wars fan who really needs this product!!

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Quoting from the website --

"Defeating the Dark Lord before you even leave the house every morning makes the rest of your day seem simple by comparison."

Here's the link -- http://nerdapproved.com/misc-gadgets/the-sith-lord-makes-toast/
Posted By: gdanea | Date: Sat Jun 06, 2009 | Comments (2)
Category:

The Art of the Brick

A recent comment about erecting a Lego statue reminded me of something I saw a while ago, but forgot to pass on to WU.

Nathan Sawaya won a competition for the Lego Master Model Builder title in 2004, and went on to work for Lego itself. Later he decided to open his own art studio, one where all the sculptures and pictures are made out of the ubiquitous little plastic bricks. Many of his creations, such as Blue pictured below with Sawaya himself, can be seen on his studio's web-site, The Art of the Brick.

My personal favourite, though, is the Lego Han Solo in Carbonite.
Posted By: Dumbfounded | Date: Sat Jun 06, 2009 | Comments (1)
Category: Toys, Surrealism

Forgotten and Unseen Electronics Part 10

If you're one of those people that don't like leaving your computer to make some toast then you'll want this. It's a toaster that's been made to fit into your computer. You can buy one here if you want to try it out.

http://www.gadgettastic.com/2008/08/14/pc-525-drive-toaster-bay-snack-a-licious/



Posted By: phantomspy1 | Date: Sat Jun 06, 2009 | Comments (3)
Category:

Shark Petting

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If you're ever in New England and wish to dispose of an unwanted rugrat, consider visiting the Biomes marine education facility here in Rhode Island, and participating in one of their "shark petting" programs.

Shark petting? Shark feeding!
Posted By: Paul | Date: Sat Jun 06, 2009 | Comments (2)
Category: Animals, Death, Museums, Nature, Children
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All original content in posts is Copyright © 2008 by the author of the post, either Alex Boese ("Alex"), Paul Di Filippo ("Paul"), or Chuck Shepherd ("Chuck"). All rights reserved. The banner illustration at the top of this page is Copyright © 2008 by Rick Altergott.