Mad scientists have recreated an extinct frog known for puking up its own babies, hooray for science! The gastric-brooding frog, or Rheobatrachus silus, is described by the Daily Mail as being "long extinct" because the last one died in … 1983. That was a long time ago! Luckily, early forms of refrigeration existed in 1983, so one of the last of these extinct frogs was kept in a freezer all this time.
'We are watching Lazarus arise from the dead, step by exciting step,' said Mike Archer, a professor at the University of New South Wales and the leader of the Lazarus Project team. 'We’ve reactivated dead cells into [...]
11. It's A Small World: Burn it down when it's full of church youth groups.
10. Splash Mountain: Some kind of offensive/idiotic Old South/Slavery thing going on here, very loosely based on the disappeared Disney cartoon feature Song of the South. The set pieces only serve to remind you that this supposed thrill ride is a long, lame experience that's never worth the wait.
9. Autopia: The charming idea of a miniaturized Pasadena freeway from the brief golden age of California car culture is ruined by the gasoline industry propaganda and cancer-spewing go-karts that consistently die on the track. Why aren't the little cars powered by batteries or [...]
This spring, while traveling cross country, I spent a few days exploring the alien culture of Roswell, New Mexico, and Rachel, Nevada, aka Area 51. I visited museums, alien-themed restaurants, and truck stops, and then made a stop at the "black mailbox" on Nevada SR-375. I didn't come across anything extraterrestrial but I did get couple great coffee mugs and some photos.
Sam Zell may have guided Tribune Company into distressed status and bankruptcy, but he's looking to the future! And the future is: his new firm that buys defaulted commercial real estate debt and then shakes it down until all the change falls out of the pockets. Which is already pretty much what happened to you if you worked for him at any of his other firms, particularly Tribune. This week, Zell is in New York-last night he was spotted leaving a quite early seating at Craft, with a woman we were too shocked by the Zell sighting to ID, who may or may not have been Helen Zell. (In [...]
You know what's a fun thing to do? Send this link to the late person in your life. When they ask you why you sent it to them don't answer. Don't ever respond. Never acknowledge it again. Just let it sit there like a giant millstone around their stupid late-person neck. It won't change anything, [...]
Mary Toft was 23 when she gave birth to her first rabbit. Other rabbits—six, seven, eight of them—followed. It was 1726. Toft lived in Godalming, a small rural town in Surrey; news of the births skipped its way to London, and the king's anatomist was dispatched to investigate. He was unimpressed with Mary, describing her as "of a very stupid and sullen Temper." Nevertheless, after witnessing a rabbit birth himself—the 15th!—he returned to London convinced of the extraordinary, preternatural nature of the births. (And why not, amazing things happen to stupid country people all the time: they're sold magic beans, they haul talking fish out of the water, they give [...]
As cities get cleaner and greener—some of them, anyway—wildlife is pouring into urban areas. There are bald eagles nesting over Washington D.C., red-tail hawks swooping over Central Park, coyotes in Chicago (and everywhere else), and now a wild river otter living in San Francisco, where such creatures haven't been seen in half a century. The mysterious otter took up residence in one of the freshwater spring-fed pools in the ruins of San Francisco's Sutro Baths, now part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. It munches on the carp-sized former-pet goldfish that have themselves grown huge in the freshwater pools, and everyone loves the otter because otters are [...]
With its crisp autumn weather and golden piles of leaves and the smell of fireplace smoke on city streets, Halloween is the best time of year. Staggering beneath great stacks of costume boxes, UPS deliverymen maneuver through mazes of foam tombstones and doorways crowded with organic heirloom jack o' lanterns. Even the seasonal aisles at the corner chain drug store are worth lingering over this time of year, in a way nobody dawdles around the Eastertime merchandise or inflatable lawn pools of summer. Even the shabby costume superstore that appears for six weeks within some [...]
What makes for a very scary story? It helps to be a child when you're hearing the tale, because you're already terrified of everything after dark. It's also a good idea to be at home alone while you're reading, so that every burp of the water pipes or cough from the weird neighbor in the next apartment sounds like the foretelling of your horrifically slow murder at the hands of THE DERELICT CLOWN. This is due to the power of The Devil, who creates suspense.
Without suspense, the glaring holes in most ghost stories become [...]
Just a little programming note: a certain very ill and somewhat frightening monster has captivated the television stations and radios and many of the papers. If you're feeling a bit too heartily pursued by this particular monster, feeling a bit too caught in the crossfires of the media streams, we have a solution for you! Join us in turning your very important gaze elsewhere. It's your mind, after all—literally your only resource. Free it and your ass will follow, and there'll be no monsters on your tail.
Experts who examined the two-headed shark say it's the first ever bull shark to be found with two heads—somebody put the dead fetus in the MRI machine because why not, and found that it wasn't "conjoined twins" but an actual two-headed shark and the first two-headed bull shark ever to be put inside the MRI machine.
Researchers also claim the baby monster would not live long in the wild, but this sounds like eugenics. Wouldn't the baby two-headed shark have twice the chance at survival?
A horrible-looking lizard that died out 65 million years ago has been named Obamadon gracilis for President Barack Obama. Paleontologist Nicholas Longrich told the Boston Globe that scientists from Harvard and Yale decided on the name just before November's election. Longrich notes that "if the election had gone the other way, I would have yanked it."
I fed myself a steady diet of the paranormal growing up, in between all the comic books and all the television. The enthusiasm does tend to wane the further away from childhood you get, but it never really goes away. I grew up hoping, believing, that the world was weirder than the grown-ups would tell you. And I liked it that way. It helped that I grew up in West Virginia, where you're never too far from the woods or a mountain or a swamp, places for mysterious things to hide and then jump out [...]
Today's Times brings one of our old favorites, Jeremiah Moss, on the radical changes in West Chelsea in the age of the High Line. The High Line, only open since summer of 2009, he writes, is overcrowded (uh, yes!) and "quickly became a tool for the Bloomberg administration’s creation of a new, upscale, corporatized stretch along the West Side." He predicts a chain-mall future for the ground level of West Chelsea. Well, as someone [...]
There's nothing quite so wonderful as an alarmist science scandal-you know, the kind of thing that sounds really really bad but you don't really know why? And we get a lot of that, because sometimes the wonderful people at National Geographic are basically the TMZ of science and animals. Because: Sharks Carrying Drug-Resistant "Bacterial Monsters! SHARKS! Monsters! The coming plague! Sharks carrying monsters in their little fins! Or, um, sharks are making a heady brew in their stomachs of drug-resistant thingies! "Though sharks aren't a staple in the human diet, we eat what they eat-crab, shrimp, and other fish. So people should be aware of these risks and handle [...]