Saturday, 12 April 2014
INTERESTING STUFF – 12 April 2014
FORD MUSTANG 50TH ANNIVERSARY
One of the many terrific things about living in Manhattan is that there is no need to own a car, a possession I find annoying in the extreme. It always wants something – gas, tires, washing, tags, insurance – not to mention that it is unwieldy and expensive.
(I believed we would have the Star Trek transporter by now and I'm deeply disappointed that we don't.)
But when I got married in 1965, we bought one of the first then-new Ford Mustangs in a gorgeous deep green color. It is one of the best looking car designs in the history of automobiles and I cannot imagine why we got rid of it.
But here, on the 50th anniversary of the Mustang, is a video from a man who kept his 1964 Mustang all these years and he's still driving it.
Cows are big, lumbering lumps of animal flesh who never have seemed to me to have much personality. Now, thanks to TGB reader Jan Cooper, we have a glimpse of what they can be like when they are filled with joy.
And it's also a nice story about people who care for these cows.
BLACK DEATH NOT CAUSED BY RATS?
The black death that killed a third or more of the British and European population in the 14th century was caused by infected rat fleas biting humans. That's what they've always told us. But now some researchers believe they have a different cause:
”...for any plague to spread at such a pace it must have got into the lungs of victims who were malnourished and then been spread by coughs and sneezes. It was therefore a pneumonic plague rather than a bubonic plague.
“'As an explanation [rat fleas] for the Black Death in its own right, it simply isn't good enough. It cannot spread fast enough from one household to the next to cause the huge number of cases that we saw during the Black Death epidemics, said Dr Tim Brook.”
If this proves true, there will be a lot of textbooks to change. You can read more about this potential historical reversal in The Guardian.
NICHOLAS BROTHERS – BEST TAP DANCE EVER?
According to the YouTube page for this video, Fred Astaire himself said it is the best dance number ever filmed.
Whether everyone agrees or not is beside the point. It is from the 1943 movie, Stormy Weather and and it is fantastic. That's Cab Calloway doing the lead-in song.
ACTOR KEVIN SPACEY ON THE BOSTON BOMBING
Tuesday 15 April is the first anniversary of the Boston Marathon bombing. A few weeks ago, Kevin Spacey told David Letterman about visiting recovering bombing victims and what puppies have to do with that.
WHAT HAPPENS TO YOUR BODY WHEN YOU DIE
Now don't go thinking this is icky or scary or something you'd rather not know. It a really interesting animation about literal dust to dust from Scientific American.
HOW TO BE A BETTER SON OR DAUGHTER
I found that Scientific American video because TGB reader Chic Barna sent a link to another story from that magazine: “How to be a better son or daughter.”
Usually, articles with such titles are a bunch pop psychology hooey but this one caught my attention for its ring-true simplicity. Just four smart, little rules we all should know but sometimes we need to be told:
Have a happy life
Don't tell them what to do
Now go read the short explanations that go with each rule. You'll be glad you now know these things. There are other places to apply them besides with parents.
HOW WEIGHT LOSS HAPPENS
You probably know all this. I do. But it is a good refresher course of facts to help explain to people who think they will lose 30 pounds in two weeks if they eat nothing but pineapple.
SIMON'S CAT – CRAZY TIME
Just when I think Simon's Cat has lost his touch a good one comes along. Hat tip to Bev Carney.
Interesting Stuff is a weekly listing of short takes and links to web items that have caught my attention; some related to aging and some not, some useful and others just for fun.
You are all encouraged to submit items for inclusion. Just click “Contact” in the upper left corner of any Time Goes By page to send them. I'm sorry that I probably won't have time to acknowledge receipt and there is no guarantee of publication. But when I do include them, you will be credited and I will link to your blog if you have one.