Sunday, February 1, 2009

Emperor Penguins Face Extinction

Declining Antarctic sea ice poses a threat to the breeding and feeding habits of the Emperor penguins. According to the BBC the penguins are slow learners are less able to adapt to such fast changes in their environment. Joel Cohen from Rockefeller University compares their situation to that of the Polar bears in the Arctic

Evil Kebabs

An article from the BBC describes how the number of calories in a kebab can greatly exceed the recommended daily intake, let alone the dubious content of some of the meat. The article states "The worst doners inspectors came across contained 1,990 calories before salad and sauces - over 95% of a woman's recommended daily calories, 346% of a woman's saturated fat intake and 277% of an adult's daily salt intake." There´s a more detailed article on the content and origin of doner kebabs here.

One heck of job though, doner inspector! But isn't that the whole point that it has that many calories... ;)

Chello Scrotum Hoax and Gaming

The condition known as Chello Scrotum which causes discomfort in the genital area after sitting playing the instrument for some time is a hoax. Baroness Murphy who originally submitted the condition the BMJ in the 70´s admitted it was made up, and furthermore observing the stance of someone playing the chello would make it clear that it would not be physically possible.

I have to admit however that sitting forward in a chair, playing games in front of the computer for a few hours leads to a similar condition, in which the seam of the jeans cuts into the scrotum and causes pain. The cure is to stand up temporarily which causes more pain for a short term before allowing you to re-adjust your clothing accordingly and further pursuing your pastime.

Sculpture Honours Bush´s Shoe Incident

A sculpture erected in Tikrit to commemorate journalist Muntadar al-Zaidi throwing his shoes at President Bush has been taken down after just one day. According to the BBC The sculpture was erected in an ophanage and it was considered innapropriate that young children be exposed to such political statements at such a young age.

Depression ¨2.0¨

While the big wigs in Davos discuss how the world economy ended up such a mess, the rest of the world know damn well what happened. Greed. Pure and simple. The economy was healthy for too long, lenders forgot about the past and took too many risks based on dodgy virtual fincancial constructions like derivatives for short term financial gains. Consumers were encouraged to take loans and mortgages that they couldn't afford. You can't really say we didn't see this coming. But as we have failed to learn from past lessons, when this is all blown over in a few years, will we still remember or kid oursleves into thinking that this will never happen again and repeat the cycle anew?

Now I´m no economist, but there are plenty of people who have seen this whole money creation bubble
coming and the strange relationship of the Federal Reserve to the US becoming unsustainable for a while, like here. What they describe is happening now, and the end result does not look pretty. If the situation really does collapse, then maybe all those FEMA camps will be required to get a grip on a starving and frightened population.

Locusts Swarms on Seratonin

Locusts are normally solitary creatures. But when food becomes scarce and they begin to crowd together, the pushing and shoving causes the creatures to tranform into the gregarious variants that swarm in their billions and cause havoc and crop damage. Now scientists from Oxford University have discovered that by tickling their hind legs to trigger the transformation into their darker, more muscular evil side, copious amounts of seratonin are produced. This discovery may lead to the use of seratonin inhibitors as a pesticide to reverse the transformation.