The Cactus Who Wanted to Be a Christmas Tree

Katie loves Christmastime. Getting presents is nice, and playing in the snow with her friends is fun, but what she likes best are all the pretty decorations...

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The Boy Who Could Wiggle His Ears

Learning how to wiggle your ears is really hard. But you can do it if you keep trying. And if you learn to keep trying, no problem is too big. So if you can wiggle your ears, you can do anything!

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Some Poems About Life

(30 Actually) Gems of Wit & Wisdom

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Don’t Sneeze With Your Eyes Open

Some topics simply can’t be ignored. Like why you close your eyes when you sneeze. No one knows for sure, but there are two theories. Remember that a sneeze is a forceful expulsion of germ-filled air from your nose and mouth. So the first reason to close your eyes is to protect those delicate organs

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What is Misophonia?

Almost everyone can be distracted by certain noises, like foot tapping. But for some people, these noises can cause them to feel like they’re going insane. This condition is called misophonia — intense emotion induced by highly specific sounds. These sounds are usually very ordinary, like mouth sounds, and the cause is unknown. “Chewing is

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Happy Spring!

In honor of spring, I’m republishing my poem My Rite of Spring, from my book Some Poems About Life. My Rite of Spring I consider myself a peaceable soul. I value all manner of livable things. Insects and mice, spiders and voles. Just about anything Mom Nature brings. But I do have my standards. I

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Electrical Bacteria

The natural world never ceases to amaze me. This is especially true of the the single-celled organisms around us. For example, on March 5, 2019, scientists at Washington State University described the first collection of a type of bacteria that eats and breathes electricity. The site was the Heart Lake Geyser Basin area of Wyoming’s

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The Real Roadkill Cafe

Roadkill has been the subject of innumerable jokes, but Idaho is treating animals killed on the road as an asset. According to estimates from the Federal Highway Administration, between one and two million large animals are hit by vehicles every year, resulting in 200 deaths and nearly $8.4 billion in damages. Since 2012, Idaho has

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Why Junk Food Doesn’t Fill You Up

Have you ever eaten a lot of sugary stuff and still felt hungry? You’ve consumed lots of calories (probably too many), but your body doesn’t seem to care. What gives? Basically, all calories aren’t the same. Our bodies have a mechanism called satiety that will stop us from eating more than we need, but it

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How The World May End?

When I was growing up, the world was obsessed with apocalyptic nuclear war. (You may remember the quote — “I do not know with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones” — usually attributed to Albert Einstein). We all survived the Cold War,

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How Long Can You Live?

For my last big running event, when it came time to record any pertinent medical information on the back of my race number, I thought of my senior-citizen status and considered simply writing “Do Not Resuscitate.” But seriously, end-of-life considerations are becoming more and more complicated, thanks to technology. Health-care workers can now keep a

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