Don’t you ever wonder we do some of the things we do? What follows is a nice long red about the origins of February 29, Leap Day.
Random image for February 29.
Leap Day a creation of tricky math and history
By Wynne Parry, LiveScienceÂ Â |Â www.csmonitor.comÂ |Â February 29, 2012
Leap Day, February 29, comes but once every four years. Leap Day is an adjustment to the calendar to cover up the difference between the time it takes the Earth to circle the sun and the usual 365-day year.
There will never be another day like today â€” at least not until 2016. Today’s date (Feb. 29) pops up on the calendar only on leap years, once almost every four years.
It has taken millennia for our calendar, called the Gregorian calendar after the pope who modified it in 1582, to evolve to include this tweak â€” 97 leap years every 400 years. There are other alternatives, according to Yury Grabovsky, an associate professor in the department of mathematics at Temple University, who has studied the history and mathematics of the Gregorian calendar.
Leap year addresses a discrepancy between our 365-day calendar and the time it takes the Earth to circle the sun. The discrepancy: It takes 365.24219878 days for the planet to complete one trip, so over time, our calendar and the astronomical one fall out of step.
Yoiks, this seems a bit heavy handed but is concrete proof that much humor, irony, and sarcasm is lost on the internet.
Big brother is watching you and reading your Twitter feed.
British tourists imprisoned and deported from USâ€¦ for Twitter jokes
http://rt.com/usa | 31 January, 2012
f the decomposed corpse of Marilyn Monroe is robbed from the grave, the terrorists have won.
Authorities in America take threats seriously, and when it comes to Hollywood royalty nearly 50 years past their expiration date, the feds donâ€™t kid around. So when a would-be British tourist joked about digging up the body of famed Hollywood starlet Marilyn Monroe, US officials, to say the least, were not amused.
The attempts at humor were posted on the Twitter account of Leigh Van Bryan, 26, which somehow managed to make its way to the US Department of Homeland Security at the same time the British residentâ€™s plane arrived at Los Angeles International Airport. When Van Bryan and his 24-year-old traveling companion arrived at LAX last week, feds were waiting for them.
This image provided by New Mexico State University shows the Trinidad Moruga Scorpion, the new hottest pepper on the planet, as identified by NMSU's Chile Pepper Institute. Image Jim Duffy, AP
Trinidad Moruga Scorpion wins hottest pepper title
usatoday.com | 2/16/2012
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. â€“ There are super-hot chile varieties. And then there’s the sweat-inducing, tear-generating, mouth-on-fire Trinidad Moruga Scorpion.
With a name like that, it’s not surprising that months of research by the experts at New Mexico State University’s Chile Pepper Institute have identified the variety as the new hottest pepper on the planet.
The golf ball-sized pepper scored the highest among a handful of chile breeds reputed to be among the hottest in the world. Its mean heat topped more than 1.2 million units on the Scoville heat scale, while fruits from some individual plants reached 2 million heat units.
Smuggling drugs and weapons in hollowed out bibles is stone cold evil genius.
Shareca Latoya Jones, 28, faces a number of charges following her attempt to mail two hollowed out bibles filled with cocaine, ecstasy, razors, and a cell phone to an inmate. (credit: Lancaster County Sheriffâ€™s Office)
Cops: South Carolina Woman Sent Drugs, Razors To Inmate In Bibles
www.charlotte.cbslocal.com | November 23, 2011
LANCASTER, S.C. (CBS Charlotte) â€“ South Carolina authorities say one woman tried to send drugs, razor knives and a cell phone to an inmate through two hollowed-out bibles.
Shareca Latoya Jones, 28, was arrested earlier this month following an investigation to find who sent the illegal package to an inmate at Lieber Correctional Facility in Ridgeville, S.C. Police say she sent 30 grams of cocaine, 30 ecstasy pills, razor knives, and a cell phone. Her arrest led to the seizure of almost $4,000 worth of drugs.
According to the initial police report, Lancaster County police discovered that the package, which was received Nov. 1, was sent out Oct. 25 from Kershaw, S.C., where Jones keeps residence. A post office clerk told police that the woman mailed books regularly to her incarcerated â€œhusbandâ€ because he couldnâ€™t receive them unless they were mailed to him. Jones would sign the mailing receipts under the name â€œAshley Wilkerson.â€
Some crimes like armed robbery are easy to understand, quick and violent. Other crimes, like this one, are much more complicated.
This undated file photo provided by the Armstrong County Jail shows Amy Slanina. Richard Vest and his wife Rebecca, say Slanina pretended to be pregnant and persuaded them to fly from Idaho to Pennsylvania five days after Christmas to â€œadoptâ€ a baby that didn't exist. Several others say Slanina has done similar scams on them. (AP Photo/Armstrong County Jail, File)
Woman jailed in Pa. has trail of fake pregnancies
By JOE MANDAK | www.ajc.com | February 20, 2012
PITTSBURGH â€” Barry and Rebecca Vest can’t conceive children â€” or of why a woman pretended to be pregnant and persuaded them to travel from Idaho to Pennsylvania five days after Christmas to adopt a baby that didn’t exist.
And what they really don’t understand is why that isn’t a crime.
The Vests claim to be the latest victims of a woman known to Pennsylvania authorities as 32-year-old Amy Slanina, who, according to court records and interviews, pretends to be pregnant so infertile couples or, in some cases, female friends or lovers will shower her with attention, affection and sometimes money, clothes, food and shelter.
Authorities list Slanina at 5-foot-4 and 175 pounds, and those who’ve met her said she could pass for being six or seven months’ pregnant.
Birds falling dead from the sky often has many explanations like lightning, fireworks causing panic, or alien death rays as suggested by the venerable Weekly World News. Whatever the cause it can NOT be a good thing.
Click images to embiggen.Â Images Brad Bell and Weekly World News
Image Brad Bell.
This video is great, worth watching, no ads and full of local commentary.
Hundreds of dead birds on I-95 in Laurel
By Brad Bell, Jason Cherkis, Stephen Tschida | February 15, 2012 | www.wjla.com
Hundreds of birds just dropped from the sky and landed onto I-95 Wednesday, bringing afternoon rush hour traffic to a crawl.
They were common Starlings, and while there were a few in the grass and on the shoulders of the highway, the vast majority landed right on the northbound travel lanes in Laurel.
â€œWe were just kind of curious about running them over and getting them stuck in your tires and all that nastiness,â€ says Tammy Johnson.
Great news-the oldest organism on earth has been discovered. Bad news, it is a threatened species.
Posidonia oceanica, a seagrass. Image www.impactlab.net
Ancient Seagrass Holds Secrets of the Oldest Living Organism On Earth
ScienceDaily | Feb. 7, 2012
It’s big, it’s old and it lives under the sea — and now an international research collaboration with The University of Western Australia’s Ocean’s Institute has confirmed that an ancient seagrass holds the secrets of the oldest living organism on Earth.
Ancient giant Posidonia oceanica reproduces asexually, generating clones of itself. A single organism — which has been found to span up to 15 kilometres in width and reach more than 6,000 metric tonnes in mass — may well be more than 100,000 years old.
“Clonal organisms have an extraordinary capacity to transmit only ‘highly competent’ genomes, through generations, with potentially no end,” said Director of UWA’s Oceans’ Institute Winthrop Professor Carlos Duarte.
New NASA Time-lapse Video Shows Northern Lights
www.sciencenewsblog.comÂ |Â February 10, 2012
Astronauts aboard the International Space Station recently filmed some spectacular night imagery of the United States and Canada. The video, comprised of hundreds of sequential still images, shows the electric glow of hundreds of cities with an impressive aurora borealis flickering on the northern horizon. The video. Take a look: