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"If cats looked like frogs we'd realize what nasty, cruel little bastards they are." ― Granny Weatherwax
May 21, 2013
The stuff you find out trolling Wikipedia's "on this day" list: Introducing Sada Abe, who:
... is remembered for erotically asphyxiating her lover, Kichizo Ishida (石田 吉蔵 Ishida Kichizō?), on May 18, 1936, and then cutting off his penis and testicles and carrying them around with her in her handbag.
There's bound to be at least a short story in there, but I'm not gonna be the one to write it.
A new study on cut marks has pushed the date humans started throwing spears back to 90,000 years. Cut mark studies have been around a long time. I remember them back when I was an undergrad in the mid-80s. You'd think someone would've thought to do this sooner, but I guess not. At any rate, now that they know what to look for, I'll be the date gets pushed back even further as new finds come to light.
May 20, 2013
Navy Dolphins have discovered a rare early torpedo off the California coast. Fortunately they didn't feel the need to blow the thing to bits for safety's sake, so maybe it'll be put on display some time in the future. Worked with a flywheel instead of a motor, so steampunk fans should be all atwitter over it, too.
Responding to Incentives
Disney is investigating whether or not rich families are hiring disabled people to help them jump ahead in line. I almost started thinking, "well, why not?" But then I realized that now Disney will have to introduce some sort of pain-in-the-ass scheme to ensure it doesn't happen anymore. When cheaters exploit trust, the rest of us lose.
May 17, 2013
Scientists have announced the discovery of the oldest known fossils of both apes and monkeys. The finds date to about 25 million years ago, which puts them much closer to the predicted split between the two genera than anything else found to-date. The fossils themselves aren't much... a jaw fragment and a single tooth. However, now that they know where to look for these sorts of fossils, I'll bet there will be better finds on the way.
Neil deGrasse Tyson has been tapped to host an upcoming "reboot" of the iconic series, Cosmos. There've been several thinly disguised copies of the show created over the years. I think Morgan Freeman's Through the Wormhole came closest to the balance of wonder and fact that made the original so captivating. Tyson himself hosted another, although its title escapes me. It'll be interesting to see what he brings to the explicitly titled comeback.
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