If am somehow conscious while it is happening, I think my first thought when I am about to die will be, "Jesus, finally." But I'm pretty sure my second thought will be, "What an idiot," no matter what the circumstances. Hopefully there won't be time for a third thought.
And scene: "Britain's oldest pet dies as tortoise that survived two world wars passes away aged 130 after being bitten on the leg by a rat"
Death approaches, for one and all. But what about our important data stored within free services that Google may or may not shut down before our death? For this, there's Google Afterlife. It's not called Google Afterlife, but that's just what some tech writers have named it, because "Inactive Account Manager" sounds like something Verizon would do to you for $6.99 a month, in or out of the grave.
Here's how it works: You can go to some Google page and click some things. No more worries about death! After your demise, if Google hasn't killed off the service, the particular way you misunderstood "Inactive Account Manager" will function [...]
"The experience of dying at a slaughterhouse is 'an enormous ordeal' for cattle. A farm in northern Germany is proposing an alternative: shooting the livestock in the places they live. Many believe the method provides a stress-free death for the animals."
When the ex-LAPD supervillain Christopher Dorner rampaged across Southern California last month, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced a million-dollar reward for information leading to Dorner's capture. Three brave heroes who survived their encounters with Dorner have since claimed the reward, but the stingy governments and groups who offered the money now refuse to pay because Dorner somehow didn't survive an army of cops roasting and demolishing the mountain cabin he holed up inside for his last stand.
Jim and Karen Reynolds survived a real-life crappy thriller movie when Dorner tied them up and held them prisoner in their nearby vacation cabin, and Rick Heltebrake lived through a harrowing carjacking [...]
"The danger posed by growing resistance to antibiotics should be ranked along with terrorism on a list of threats to the nation, the government's chief medical officer for England has said." Also there is "a nagging concern among health officials who say the 2,000-mile border between the U.S. and Mexico could become a breeding ground for one of the hardest forms of TB to treat. Already, both California and Texas, as well as some states on the Mexico side of the border, have unusually high rates of drug-resistant TB." And just last week, health officials warned that [...]
Fried chicken, ham, bacon, "sweet tea" and huge store-bought cakes are the five major food groups of the Southern United States, and there are apparently some health consequences to eating nothing but fat, lard, corn syrup and factory slaughtered antibiotic-filled pigs and chickens.
People who ate Southern food six times a week had a 41% higher risk of stroke, compared with people who ate such food once a month. And, the study found, a traditional Southern diet accounted for 63% of the higher risk of stroke among African Americans, compared with white Americans.
The study followed 20,000 white and black Americans who enjoy the "traditional Southern diet" of "fried [...]
Do you lay awake some nights with the pillow clamped over your eyes to keep out the light from the streets, your breath labored as you try to set the racing thoughts at bay, listing numbers very slowly and almost drifting off before an errant fear jumps to the front of the line in your consciousness and snaps you back awake? Do you sigh to yourself and resume the slow count, knowing that it won't really work but trying all the same, because what else are you going to do, it's way too early to call it morning and you're already in short supply of sleep because everything you [...]
Finally, our president has taken the battle home in our long war against birds. So long, eagles and hawks! Get stuffed! (If they can still stuff the twisted half-carcasses—more than half a million a year!—that remain after our wind turbines do their work.) MAKE LIKE THE BEES AND DROP DEAD.
Oh man, this total environmental collapse is going to be awesome!
"The alliance between Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan was one of the most enduring political friendships of the past 50 years. The former British prime minister and the decades-long relationship between the two families is the subject of a new exhibition that the Reagan Library and Museum will present starting Tuesday at its location in Simi Valley." —If you hooligans are done having "street parties" and smashing windows in the U.K., and if you're done tramping the dirt down in Africa, and all these other rude displays, perhaps it's time to seek forgiveness at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library's thrown-together salute to Margaret Thatcher, which [...]
"H7N9 bird flu is considered a low pathogenic strain that cannot easily be contracted by humans," the AP reports from Beijing. Well that would be very comforting for humans (if not for birds), except for the sad fact that the wire story is about the first two humans known to be killed by H7N9. Another infected human is in critical condition.
But it's supposedly a low-level virus and not the SARS kind of crazy—that virus jumped to humans from a weird kind of wildcat cruelly captured and then kept in cages to sell to bad people at markets. SARS eventually killed 775 of the 8,000 infected during that [...]
"There are five better sinkholes than that in Brooklyn alone." – New Yorkers living in DC.
— Ryan Avent (@ryanavent) March 12, 2013
It's tough to imagine a news cycle more exciting than waiting for a gaggle of old men in white dresses who are quietly thinking about consensus (and decades-long organized coverups of global pedophilia rings operated by the Catholic Church), but a miracle has occurred in Washington, D.C., to turn our attention away from the Vatican: There is a sinkhole in the Adams Morgan neighborhood. We know, we know, How could anyone tell?
The reaction has been as fast as it has been snide.
DC IS [...]
I have been meaning to write my tell-all obituary for some time; everyone is doing it. It's just good policy to ensure you have your final "bite me" in the bag.
Your Snow Angel Will Not Be As Good As The One A Great Horned Owl Left After Scooping Its Prey From The Ontarian Tundra
A couple of Christmases ago, I was in upstate New York with family and friends and it snowed like two feet. We took my kid outside to play and we built a snow man and a snow fort. My in-laws' best friends are a couple named Roberta and Viki. Roberta is an art historian. Viki is a museum director. They both have strong opinions and they joined us outside, where Viki found a patch of deep powder and let herself fall backwards into it to make a snow angel. She did the jumping-jacks move like you're supposed to do and got up to admire her work. "There!" she said. [...]
"Meet three young women who want to teach our repressed society how to explore its relationship with death."
You know that uneasy feeling you get every time you suddenly remember that nothing really matters, that every second of pain and suffering you struggle through each day—and even those all-too-rare moments of feeling something like, if not joy, not complete and utter hopelessness—ultimately means nothing? That both the good you've done and the evil you do (and, of course, the stunning mediocrity and selfishness that make up the bulk of your achievements while that sack of meat you shuffle around takes up space here on Earth) will eventually count for zero, and almost certainly sooner rather than later? That from the moment you are born, every event you [...]
"Labels on meat products sold in the U.S. could soon read like a sad mini-biography of the ranch-raised beasts."
"She was once celebrated as 'the Shirley Temple of the animal world.' She was so popular that she became the subject of a custody battle between two competing zoos. When she suffered a broken arm, rapt New Yorkers followed every twist and turn of her convalescence. Her name was Pattycake, and she was the first gorilla born in New York City. She died on Sunday at the Bronx Zoo at 40 years old." —Raise a banana to Pattycake, the sweetheart of the Bronx Zoo and the first native New Yorker of her species. She'll be replaced by somebody with a graduate degree and a part-time blogging job looking [...]
Scary mummies in museums are not so different than you, experts say, because even the most hideous dried-up corpse from thousands of years ago suffers the same mundane risks for heart disease as people still shuffling along today: hardened arteries.
Bored researchers did a "stress test" on 137 mummies from around the world and found a third of the monstrosities were suffering from atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.
The heart condition is commonly believed to be associated with modern lifestyle errors such as smoking cigarettes and eating so much bacon and thinking that's funny, but this new research suggests mummies have been suffering these heart problems since the [...]
"A growing body of research has credited the power of positive thinking for contributing to good health and a longer, happier life. But a new study out of Germany suggests people who are pessimistic about their futures — specifically older people — may find greater life satisfaction down the road than their more optimistic peers."