40 percent less Spice

Okay, it may lack sport or poshness. Still:

[smiling at that #wannabe hashtag]

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There’s always another obstacle

In this case:

Sometimes, that thin wire is all you have.

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Official, it says

Subtle, it’s not.

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Eye of beef

And the back eye at that. It’s just crazy enough to work:

Scientists have come up with a solution that will reduce the number of lions being shot by farmers in Africa – painting eyes on the butts of cows.

It sounds a little crazy, but early trials suggest that lions are less likely to attack livestock when they think they’re being watched — and less livestock attacks could help farmers and lions co-exist more peacefully.

The new technique is being tested by scientists from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia, after they noticed that lions tended to back off when their prey, such as impala, looked at them.

An early trial:

[I]n a small trial in Botswana last year…when the researchers stamped painted eyes onto a third of a herd of 62 cattle, and counted the returning cows over a 10-week period, no painted cows were killed by lions, while three unpainted cows were.

Should this show up in a Chick-fil-A ad — on second thought, never mind.

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Rehab: day thirteen

As I should have suspected, I have not lost 30 pounds while in confinement. (More like 15.) Never trust a single scale if you can possibly avoid it.

The profession is apparently hiring some damnably attractive women these days.

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Justify your existence

And there had better be some dollar signs in that justfication, too:

Someone I follow on Twitter posted a photograph from one of those truly beautiful European libraries and made a comment about how he could “carry around more books on my phone” and it seems to me that that’s a big part of the malaise of our times — or at least, the malaise I am feeling. That the beautiful and the aesthetic are slowly being replaced by the functional but ugly, and no one seems to think that losing those aesthetics don’t in some way impoverish us. I once referred to it as “the gradual crappification of everything” — how some nice groceries close up and are replaced by wal-marts with bad management and surly employees and tvs at the end of every aisle blaring ads, how it’s no longer “profitable” for students to do anything outside of technical or STEM degrees, so the humanities are in decline or are derided, that instead of lovely places being appreciated people complain about how the space could be “better used more efficiently” or something like that.

And I admit, sometimes I feel like we will someday be surrounded by nothing but concrete-box buildings, noise, and greyness, and very few people will ask, “Why are we here? Isn’t this an unpleasant state of being?” because everyone will have been convinced that this is The New Normal and it is all we merit, because anything else is “unprofitable” and therefore not worth it. Or that it’s somehow all we deserve because we are awful. And I don’t know, yeah, humans are awful but having an awful world around us doesn’t exactly encourage us to be better.

There are times when my impending demise bothers me less than usual, and this is one of them.

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Gut reaction

This isn’t quite the British equivalent of “Here, hold my beer,” but it’s close:

A man was rushed to hospital, suffering from severe stomach pains, after eating three chicken wings doused in sauce made from what is thought to be the world’s hottest chili pepper.

Mark McNeil, 36, was hoping to be able to eat ten of the chicken wings to win a competition.

Despite being given advice at the University Hospital of North Tees for severe stomach pain, he is looking to try again in the competition which is held at The George on Stockton High Street.

The pepper in question?

The Carolina Reaper, originally named the HP22B, is a cultivar of chili pepper of the Capsicum chinense species. It is currently the hottest pepper in the world.

On the Scoville scale, where the jalapeño rates somewhere below 10,000, the Reaper checks in well beyond a million.

(Via Bayou Renaissance Man.)

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Google eats the soul

And it chews at least 32 times per bite:

I sold my soul to GoogleDocs in exchange for autosave every fifteen seconds. But I sinned against Google or something, and Chrome decided it was no longer going to open for me. Uninstalled and reinstalled, checked for viruses, nothing. So I downloaded Firefox, which is … fine. Except that it will not allow me to copy/paste in GoogleDocs with my mouse. I tried the common fixes that pop up online, making sure “dom.event.clipboardevents.enabled” is set to “true” and trying to modify “user.js,” which I don’t seem to have (or at least it’s not where anyone says it should be and Windows refuses to find it for me.) Past those, everything I see seems to throw up their hands and says to use keyboard shortcuts, which is unacceptable to me because I am 32 years old, damnit, and I’m not going to change how I do things.

So there.

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Rehab: day twelve

The committee met this morning, and they’re pretty much in agreement on Adequate Progress.

Brief encounter with a Therapy Dog, a friendly poodle of standard size and kindly demeanor.

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Saith W

And you know, he’s right:

Excellent call, sir.

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Knowing what you’re worth

And remember, it’s always more than those Ordinary Folks:

Rep. Corrine Brown (D-Fla.) said Friday that if the Department of Justice had been investigating the Orlando nightclub shooter instead of her, the 49 people killed in the massacre there last month would still be alive.
[…]

“These are the same agents that was not able to do a thorough investigation of [shooter Omar Mateen], and we ended up with 50 people dead,” Brown said. Mateen was shot and killed by police at the scene of the Orlando nightclub attack, bringing the total death toll to 50.

Brown’s lawyer echoed those sentiments. “Perhaps had it chosen to devote its resources more thoughtfully, 50 innocent people would be alive today,” Elizabeth White said, according to First Coast News.

Brown was hit with a 24-count federal indictment. One for every other victim?

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In which a hat is tipped

And for good reason, too:

The previous post was #3,000 for this here blog, which makes me a “millitriathlete” of running my mouth.

Not even going to try to come up with a comparable term for this place.

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As usual, I’m late

But you already knew the drill, right?

Remember: one of these days is Centaxday.

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Rehab: day eleven

Tested out a bench for the bathtub. Easier than standing up under the shower, I suppose.

I suspect the existence of actual readers among the staff, and possibly even among the patients.

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Females being selective and all

You probably don’t want to try this at home:

On your next date, you might not want to try vomiting bioluminescent mucus, but for male crustaceans called ostracods it works like a charm. The female ostracods like it, say some researchers.

Makes for some semi-compelling video, too, even from Other Species:

“When you’re there watching this display it’s spectacular. You can have up to nine species all in the same area displaying at similar times. I don’t know how the females do it, but they’re really good at figuring out who is their correct male,” explained Emily Ellis. She and Todd Oakley are scientists at the University of California, Santa Barbara who study ostracods in the Caribbean.

A giant squid was not available for comment.

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Nice arachnid

Useful household advice:

Yep.

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