Archive for the ‘tortoises’ Category
I have a confession. I really dislike the niqab – the full Islamic veil. If I were asked to vote on a ban, I'd really have to grit my teeth in order to vote against it rather than abstain. But I would vote against. My own feelings about the demonisation and control of women are my own business, and I do not accept that they belong in law.
Statistically there's far more risk to the public in this country from cats than from face veils1, and (albeit, again, on principle only) I'd be against banning cats too.
How will the vote go in France? Will other countries follow suit? The Netherlands perhaps? It's just not going to end well for moderate hippie can't-we-all-get-along bleeding-heart-and-artist scum like me, that's all.
1 I have not verified this. This is what is known as an unfounded claim. (If you've never seen one of those from me before, you haven't been paying attention.) But you get the point. There's definitely more danger from water than from either of the other things, but stalwart attempts to ban H2O haven't yet made headway.
Questionable statistics time! By 2051 in the UK, by comparison to the 2001 census, there will still be a comfortable white majority, but other ethnicities will have increased in number by a long way. 79% white d00ds is the prediction, compared to 92% in 2001.
This is from a study published by the University of Leeds (and led by a geographer for some reason) and compiled by a bunch of statisticians, who, though Bau knows I like you all in a generalised benign sort of way, just shouldn't be allowed to predict anything to do with living beings ever.
I shudder to imagine how the red-masthead headlines will summarise this. The BBC's long-form headline is relatively neutral and informative. (update just before posting: oh look, I was right)
A survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) finds that in some nations, more than half of CEOs see nature loss as a challenge to business growth.
That seems bizarre, and I guess consumer-driven, but possibly a good thing?
US 'disappointed' that Switzerland won't extradite an old man who admitted anally raping a thirteen-year-old girl. Oh, and his house arrest has been lifted too. The Swiss are holding to their position based on some legal technicalities. Fine, but just wait until he sets foot outside the border…
Schools are advised against holding swimming lessons during Ramadan. To prevent children accidentally drinking water.
I don't know if things have changed since I last splashed around in a school swimming pool, but the very last thing I wanted to do was swallow that chlorinated, wee-filled stuff.
It's not only swimming lessons that should be rescheduled, apparently. Exams and sex education should also be postponed because of the disruption to sleep and the requirement to avoid sexual thoughts during the month.
Am I misremembering the principle of the thing, or isn't the point of Ramadan to fast around and in addition to your normal life, in order to feel closer to those without enough food, rather than to change everyone's lifestyle to suit your requirements? I'm sure I remember something about how following your faith ostentatiously is kind of missing the point.
Katherine Jenkins to star in Christmas Doctor Who. Next Easter special: Dizzee Rascal. Next Christmas special: Nick Griffin.
Earth 0.01% younger2 than previously thought, say scientists. Young Earth creationists claim victory!
2 my maths, so blame me if I forgot the difference between a Brit and a Merkun billion. Can't they publish these figures in sensible powers of ten?
A new 'liquid armour', working on the principle of "what custard does when you whack it", which is more formally known as shear-thickening and is a particular habit of things called non-Newtonian fluids, can STOP BULLETS WITH ITS MIND. And some Kevlar for show, but basically with its mind.
Choir to sing their own DNA. "Somewhat uninspiring lyrics but the music was terribly natural and organic and, um, nucleosidic."
It's a full step in geekiness above the Ayreon song that features vocalists singing in binary…
Pictures time. This tapestry maps the lines of what claims to be the world's biggest diffraction pattern. (Yes, I have heard it publically claim this…)
…and a cyclist in a supremely daft pose, for which we at Black Dog Blog salute him.
And finally, the earliest evidence of a pet tortoise in Britain. Pretty cool to find a pet tortoise alive 130 years ago, wouldn't you say? Well, what if I tell you it was A GUARD TORTOISE IN A FRICKIN' CASTLE and that it had dominion over a PACK OF VICIOUS ATTACK DOGS AND CATS? This was one badass Tetsudo, my friends. It was probably called something like Avenger or Bloodletter3. The fact that it was the only pet tortoise in the vicinity was no stop to its badassery, because its supreme awesomeness permitted it to impregnate other tortoises anywhere within 45° longitude of its location, which, as was previously mentioned but bears repeating, was a FRICKIN' CASTLE.
Tortoises are so cool.
3 or possibly "Lightning", because some senses of humour never change.
You can imagine an editor's eyes lighting up on being handed this story on a Friday. "Any clowns involved?" she asks, with a slavering sort of gleam. The work experience boy backs away, clutching a tube of Digestives to his chest.
"First an admission: I am a Jew, and a journalist. And now an apology: I hate the solipsistic writing I am about to be guilty of, where the journalist puts himself at the centre of the story."
So do I, but this is a good article nonetheless.
Thousands spent to bring Mauritius dog Dodo to Aberdeen. Money well spent. We came very close to doing the same one time when visiting Crete many years back. Poor little Nico got run over in front of us and we ended up setting his leg and treating him.
Cornwall tortoise sanctuary classed as zoo, which it turns out is a terrible thing for them.
I can offer a home to one or two…
How blind to change are you? The clips haven't been working for me so far, so I can't thrash you all.