Nine Things to Mess Your Head Up: A break from ninjas and kittens

Posted: August 25, 2012 in Life, Philosophy, Tech and Life, Writing
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Alligator Sex:  You can control the gender of unborn alligators by altering the temperature at which you incubate the eggs.  Incubate at 33° C (91.4° F), and you get 100% males.  Incubate at 30° C (86°F), and you get 100% females.  Human Body Temperature is 37° C / 98.6° F

Reptiles vs. Mammals:  The Yellow-Bellied Three-Toed Skink Lizard in Australia lays eggs.  The exact same species, 200 miles away in New South Wales, gives birth to live young.  This is definitely caused by a reptile dysfunction.

Space Wealth:  Almost every single asteroid contains more precious metals and minerals than we have on earth in its entirety; enough to eradicate world hunger forever.  This stands to reason, as the earth itself kind of exists in space, so all the rocks came from there.  James Cameron is planning to tap that ass-teroid.

Japanese Suicide Rituals are still Alive and Kicking:  Ritual Public Suicide by Disembowelment (Seppuku) is still customary and highly honored by some people in Japan.  This is an awful and gruesome act which many folks screw up due to the intensity of the pain.  Very often, a highly esteemed and trusted companion is standing by to complete the rite with a sword, ready to behead the victim.  This backup plan is also routinely botched, and at that point, the whole stage probably resembles Monty Python at their darkest & best.

Hero or Zero?  In the first ever public appearance of Superman (1933, created by Jerry Siegel), Supey was a bald, telepathic super-villain intent on taking over the world.  The appearance was in a sci-fi story called “The Reign of the Super Man”.  Siegel died in 1996, aged 81.

Recursive Naming:  The acronym PHP (in the computer scripting language context) is recursive, meaning that the first P in PHP stands for “PHP”.  The H is “Hypertext” and the second P is “Preprocessor”.  I don’t know how this occurred up front, before there was a name to name it after, but I suspect lies were involved.

Going Viral:  The word “Meme” is a meme, and the term “Going Viral” has gone viral.  Meme stems from the study of memetics, name termed by Richard Dawkins in “The Selfish Gene” – a concept theorizing that information exists and behaves in a manner similar to bacteria and viruses, in that it self-perpetuates, grows, evolves, adapts to threats and spreads among people, in a seemingly natural and self-sustaining effort to grow stronger.  Religion could be considered among the most powerful of memes, whose spread and behavior have transformed a hypothetical and far-fetched series of unknowable ideas into what millions now consider to be facts, irrespective of plausibility.

Bees and Crows:  Crows do not fly in a straight line, unless they are over the ocean.  “As the crow flies” comes from the old practice of taking a crow on board sailing ships.  If the ship became lost or disoriented, they would go up to the Crow’s Nest and release the bird, which would then fly in the direction of the nearest piece of land.  When navigating over land, Crows (as with homing pigeons) often follow man-made roads to aid them.  Additionally, a bee-line is technically a zig-zag.  Next time you decide to beeline for the exit at 4.30, you should probably consider going straight, as you’ll get there faster.

Cows and Moons:  Despite long-held beliefs, it is almost universally accepted that a cow never, in fact, jumped over the moon.


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