Category Archives: Fun Facts

Ringing in the New Year With New Life

New years are always a time for renewal, so I thought it appropriate to pass along some scientific news — “In 2017, researchers at the California Academy of Sciences, along with several dozen international collaborators, added 85 new plant and animal species to Earth’s tree of life, including 16 flowering plants, three scorpions, 10 sharks,

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Are Dogs Smarter Than Cats?

Here is a good way to start an argument (not that we need any more reasons) — which is smarter, dogs or cats? I don’t own any pets; I take responsibility to animals pretty seriously, so I don’t have any strong opinions.  But there is a new study claiming that dogs have the edge in

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Just For Fun — Santa the Criminal

A headline in the December 25, 2017 “The Daily Dose” from Ozy.com brought me up short — “How Many Crimes Would Santa Be Guilty Of If He Were Real?”  (This piece reminded me of the Pixar animated feature The Incredibles, where superheroes had to go undercover due to the collateral damage their good deeds were

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How To Live To Be 100?

Everyone wants a nice long life — I’m planning on 80 myself — but the way technology is advancing, perhaps I’m setting my sights too low.  Is living to be 100 a realistic goal? A recent study published in International Psychogeriatrics has explored what it takes to make it to the century mark.  Researchers visited

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Some Things to Look Forward to in 2018

In addition to recapping the passing year, a favorite media pastime is looking ahead to what the new year might bring.  Although some changes we already know, like we’re getting a new head of the Federal Reserve in February, much is pure speculation, especially when it comes to technology.  Here are some technological items I’ve

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Would Your Dog Eat You If You Died?

This sounds more like a Halloween story, but I couldn’t resist. A recent email from National Geographic about the “Best in 2017” contained this little gem — “Would Your Dog Eat You If You Died?” by Erika Engelhaupt (publication date June 23, 2017).  At the risk of killing the suspense (pardon the pun), the answer

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An Explanation For Picky Eating?

My mom was one of those parents who was always asking us to try new foods.  And the items I won’t eat today can be counted on my fingers.  But many of us are “very selective” eaters, especially when we are children.  Why? “Picky Eating: Is it Nature or Nurture?” by Renee Morad addresses this

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A Realistic Alien Tale

We’ve had a visitor from outside our solar system (https://www.nasa.gov/feature/jpl/small-asteroid-or-comet-visits-from-beyond-the-solar-system).  Okay, so it was just an asteroid.  A lot of people with overactive imaginations are probably disappointed, but such is life in the real world. Speaking of aliens, there is evidence that alien microbes have attached themselves to the International Space Station (ISS).  In a

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Life on a Moon-less Earth?

What would the Earth be like without its moon?  Songwriters and poets would have one less subject, and you probably would never have heard of King Canute since there would be smaller tides (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/King_Canute_and_the_tide).  As the website EarthSky points out, most planets have small moons relative to their size, so in most cases it would

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