Archives: 2010 April

Archive for April, 2010

Coincidence Not Lost upon D.C. City Council

In case you weren’t reminded via a text message, pungent scent in the park, or boisterous coworker, today is 4-20. Don’t feel obliged to celebrate, but do take comfort in knowing that the District of Columbia’s City Council has a sense of humor.

It turns out that the city’s executives decided to schedule a vote to approve the sale of medical marijuana in the nation’s capital on the widely celebrated “counterculture holiday.” According to The Washington Post’s city blog D.C. Wire, the bill has garnered high approval from council members.

Because Baby African Penguins Need Some Love Too

In the spirit of miracles and endosymbiotic theory, we have some extinction evading maneuvers taken by two Coloradan zoos that saved the life of one darling baby African penguin:

Greg Henry/Denver Zoo

The endangered penguin’s parents were either unwilling or incapable of sitting on the poor chap, so zookeeper and concerned citizen Melanie Pococke put in the call to find some surrogate folks.

Per the Washington Examiner:

The adoptive parents immediately began caring for the newborn by “brooding” the chick by covering it with their bodies and wings for protection and quickly began feeding it, says the Denver Zoo.

Kudos to the Denver Zoo’s sympathetic penguin population for taking the time to care for a kindred pup. Big ups to all devoted zookeepers–gods amongst men.

So Are How My Kids Look Like Me Miracles?

Constant Goodosphere readers, I come to you with a question.

Are you a believer in miracles?

I ask as someone recently enlightened to the miracles all around us. You see, I was blind to the inexplicable joys, wonders, magic all around us. The magic all up in this–shut yo mouth! …I’m just talking about miracles.

Why should I keep you from reaching this realization yourselves with my muddying words, though? I mustn’t.

Look.

See.

Believe.

(Warning: this video contains offenses to the English language. It also contains curse words.)

Now you’ve seen. Now you know. But let me blow your mind once more, readers. After seeing this video I immediately put on my research hat. There was so much to look up. Rainbows, mountains, the seven seas! And the conclusions I came to may be shocking. I have it on good authority that giraffes just may not be miracles like we once thought. Yes, gentle readers — even with their long necks. It may not even be magic that causes solar eclipses or makes my kids look like me and your kids look like you. Don’t turn away from me yet, I say true, I swear it.

As for magnets? Magnets are probably still magic.

I present to you…

Learn Your Science With ICP

I’ve left you with a lot to take in as this week begins, I know. New ideas presented to you, new perspectives to leave with once you close the Goodosphere and return to the world. I hope that when you turn from your computer and look at that world, you see as many miracles all around you as I now do.

P.S. RIP “Ass” Dan.

From Teamwork, Life?

Okay, I want to take you back. Wayyy back.

I’m not a microbiologist or anything but it seems to me this is pretty damn cool. A long, long time ago the only life on Earth were simple bacteria. How did our little bacteria friends grow and change and become the organisms that are essentially our ancestors? Let this video explain.

Essentially, mitochondria, the building blocks of complex life, could be the product of some sort of bacteria deciding to take up residence inside some other sort of bacteria. This whole crazy thing is called endosymbiotic theory and it basically says that working together allowed these simple organisms to become the complex and diverse flora and fauna of today.

I feel better knowing that symbiotic cooperation was the catalyst for the development of all complex lifeforms. It’s remarkable that it all began with a little bit of teamwork. I guess it’s no surprise then that enmity has always threatened to be our undoing…

I Know Why The 14 Songbirds in Your Pants Sing

Honestly, what’s the point of being Governor if you don’t even excuse a crime so charmingly absurd as this?

Duc Le, one of two men involved in a plot to smuggle songbirds into the U.S. from Vietnam, pleaded guilty Monday to criminal conspiracy. Sony Dong, pictured below (he’s the one in the black socks) carried the 14 songbirds strapped to his ankles on the international flight from Vietnam to Los Angeles International Airport. Dong, who has also pleaded guilty, was apprehended at LAX in April 2009 and is currently awaiting sentencing.


(AP Photo/Department of Justice)

It is the official opinion of Goodosphere that Mr. Le and Mr. Dong be granted full pardons for their crimes. Their hilarious attempt to smuggle trouserbirds into the U.S. has no doubt increased advertising revenue in print media and spurred a daring new fashion trend to the benefit of all Americans.

Update: We understand that several of the birds in question have retained council from the law firm of Beake, Birdman, and Peck.

The Big Picture

As a quick addendum to Sean’s most recent post, here is a stunning gallery of photos taken over the last few weeks of the two recent shuttle launches to the International Space Station. Photos 20 through 22 in particular will blow the tiny little mind of the aspiring photographer in all of us.

The post comes to us via The Big Picture, a blog worth visiting every day. Take a peek at today’s photos of Iceland’s volcanic eruptions and see what I mean.

P.S. Don’t you wish we could tell Obama to throw his hat over the wall and decrease that manned mission to Mars window by a little bit? (And never mind the flying car, where are our hoverboards?!)

Double Down: Mars & The Pale Blue Dot

Obama’s been catching some flack from spacemen this week for paring down Georgie’s man on the moon redux, but he had the political-savvy to accompany that decision with a commitment to putting man on Marswithin his lifetime.” Space geeks everywhere are gyrating back and forth in ebullience.

In honor of the kinda momentous announcement, Goodosphere throws it back to Carl. Enjoy two great video tributes to the intergalactic wonderer, Cosmos creator, and humble genius:

Don't EVER Doubt The Pulitzer

They hand out Pulitzer Prizes for all sorts of things: local reporting, cracking wise, thumbing up, and even for funny New England accents.

Hours after this year’s Pulitzers were handed out, a local miscreant walked into a Wells Fargo Bank in San Jose with the intention of pilfering some Benjamins. Little did he know, standing behind him was a 1987 Pulitzer Prize winner for spot news photography.

Big mistake.

The ace photographer, Kim Komenich — who now serves as an adjunct professor of new media at San Jose State University — took a heroic stand against the lawlessness, but he used what can only be considered the most awkward and embarrassing defense mechanism known to man — the bear hug. Click the image for the comical slideshow via The San Jose Mercury News:

Via San Jose Mercury News

Komenich overheard the scoundrel’s words with the Wells Fargo bank teller and foiled his plans with great panache and a protracted ninja bear:

Police found Komenich and Fernandes still entwined in their awkward embrace. They quickly arrested Fernandes and his two suspected accomplices, who had remained in the customer waiting area. They were later booked on robbery charges.

Police later stated that they would not recommend getting involved in such a situation. “There’s a variety of different ways [it] could have gone bad,” local lawman Ronnie Lopez told Mercury News. Though Komenich declined to be interviewed after the incident, I’m pretty sure he would have scoffed at the advice. One would think he’s waiting for the hefty reward he has coming from the stagecoach, but I’m guessing he did it all for the Pulitzer.

On that note, check out this year’s winner for breaking news photography:

Chind/Des Moines Register

A couple’s boat capsized after it went over a damn in downtown Des Moines last year. Patricia Ralph-Neely struggled to remain afloat as her husband drifted down river to his death. A nearby construction worker caught a glimpse of the struggling Ralph-Neely, chained himself to a crane, and swooped in to save her. Photographer Mary Chind documented the remarkable event by total happenstance. Kudos to real-life Superman Jason Oglesbee, who reluctantly accepted a heroism award and refused to publicize the event or his actions.

Good things happen.

No Sex in The Stevens Room

In great news for Supreme Court enthusiasts and the news media, Justice John Paul Stevens announced Friday that he would retire at the end of this term. There aren’t many lifetime appointments made in this country, so we can safely assume that Justice Stevens will wonder how his legacy will be considered by future generations of historians, jurisprudents, scholars, and strippers.

Win McNamee/Getty Images

Depending on your inclinations, the Justice’s 35 years on the bench of the highest court in the land may be remembered for a rather inauspicious tribute that came courtesy of the gentleman’s club Scores in 1998.

During former Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s crusade to polish the Big Apple, he attempted to crack down on strip clubs and other purveyors of adult entrainment. Attorneys representing the adult industry appealed to the Supreme Court for a stay to keep their doors open while the courts reached a decision. The stay was issued by Justice Stevens and as the New York Times reported at the time, to show their appreciation, Scores renamed their Champagne Room the John Paul Stevens Room.

Looks like Justice Stevens doesn’t have to worry about putting his name on something inviolate. Your go Antonin!

Beatles Forgiven

In yet another demonstration that the Vatican has its finger squarely on the pulse of today, the Church publicly forgave iconic rock’n’roll band The Beatles Saturday for their history of drug use and inflammatory statements.

Marking the 40th anniversary of the band’s break-up, the Vatican’s newspaper, L’Osservatore Romano, published a tribute to The Fab Four and publicly made peace with the British rockers this weekend. In 1966, John Lennon famously remarked that the band was ‘more popular than Jesus‘ to the outrage of many Catholics.

Perhaps, by extending this olive branch, the Vatican has finally confirmed Lennon was right.

In all seriousness, this offer of peace between the Holy See and The Beatles is a win-win for music and religion. The editors here at Goodosphere are delighted the Vatican has decided to bury the hatchet and simply Let It Be.

Courtesy of AP. Read more.