"...You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie awake in the middle of the night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss your only love, you may see the world around you devastated by evil lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds. There is only one thing for it then — to learn. Learn why the world wags and what wags it. That is the only thing the mind can never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or distrust, and never dream of regretting."Before President John F. Kennedy signed into legislation the Cuban trade embargo, he secured 1,200 Cuban cigars for himself.
(from The Once and Future King)
A video at The Telegraph explains the "Trial of the Pyx," which confirms the value of British gold coins. The procedure dates back to the 13th century.
The LunaCobra website specializes in body modification. From the safety of your home or office you can view galleries of piercings, tongue splittings, implants and eyeball tattoos.
"How to land a plane if you are not a pilot." One page of instructions. Easy as pie.
And another one-page succinct summary: the Cold War explained.
Google Street View now includes hikes on the trails of the Grand Canyon.
The Budweiser 2013 Super Bowl ad should appeal to anyone who likes horses and the music of Stevie Nicks.
"In a nationwide study of 15,000 high school students, pot is now more popular among teens than cigarettes."
This LiveLeak video is from the dashcam of an automobile involved in a spectacular accident. No gore, and they survived, but it is still startling as hell, and possibly NSFL if such things trouble you. Discussed at Reddit.
The crime rate in New York City has plunged dramatically. "In one remarkable day, Nov. 26, 2012, there was not a single murder, stabbing or shooting reported in the nation's largest city, possibly the only time that happened since New York was a small Dutch colony." There is disagreement about why this is happening; theories are discussed at LiveScience.
A Swedish golfer on the Ladies European Tour was bitten by a black widow spider during a match. As her leg started to swell and become painful, "she pulled a tee out of her pocket ("it was the only thing I had handy," she told Svensk Golf) and used it to cut open the wound so she could squeeze out the venom and keep it from spreading inside her body." She finished her round with a 74. [hat tip to reader Eddie for this link]
In response to the modified female genitalia typically displayed in pornography, a "labia pride" movement has arisen to celebrate the diversity of normal human anatomy. Details and links at Salon.
"Rob Samuels, Maker's Mark's chief operating officer, said Sunday that it is restoring the alcohol volume of its [bourbon] product to its historic level of 45 percent, or 90 proof. Last week, it said it was lowering the amount to 42 percent, or 84 proof, because of a supply shortage."
Homeowners who live in northern climates might want to read about the problems involved with having plumbing vents frosted shut. "The plumbing code requires plumbing vents to terminate at least 12" above the surface of the roof to help prevent the vents from getting blocked with snow, but the higher the vent the greater the potential for getting blocked with frost."
A must read for every world soccer fan. Match-fixing is rampant. " there's plenty of other evidence, even recent evidence, that match-fixing is rampant in global soccer — but because the sheer extent of the allegations means that we can no longer delude ourselves about what's happening. This is what's happening: Soccer is fucked. Match-fixing is corroding the integrity of the game at every level... When the outcomes of matches are being dictated from the outside, though? You no longer have a game at that point. You have something else, a weird simulacrum, pro wrestling without the feather boas."
Here is a list of "every novel to reach the number one spot on Publishers Weekly annual bestsellers list" from 1913 to 2013. I've only read about a dozen of them - but I've seen most of the movies.
Those interested in native plants might enjoy browsing the newsletters of the South Carolina Native Plant Society. I was a member of the Kentucky Native Plant Society when I lived there. Such groups often have excellent field trips.
Bicycle helmet laws are discussed in a Reddit thread which includes some interesting arguments ("reduced injuries comes about only because of reduced bike riding" "riders in automobiles would also be safer if they wore helmets.")
Video of a young man who juggles Rubik's Cubes - and solves the cubes while juggling them.