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December 11th, 2017

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First-World Problem Solved | The Aristocrats!

News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

By News of the Weird by Chuck Shepherd

Published April 6, 2015

First-World Problem Solved | The Aristocrats!

Point Taken: At a February meeting in Geneva of the U.N. Conference on Disarmament, regarding whether meetings should be open to the general public, the representative from Belarus expressed alarm because of potential problems for the security staff. "What if," he asked (according to a Reuters report), "there were topless ladies screaming from the public gallery throwing bottles of mayonnaise?" (According to the official summary, the Mexican delegate apparently earnestly pointed out that some U.N. meetings were already open to the public, but as yet there had been no mayonnaise-droppings.) [Reuters, 2-11-2015]

CSI Netherlands: Police in the Dutch town of Haarlem, near Amsterdam, raided an urban marijuana farm after a recent snowfall. In photographs of the neighborhood, all yards and roofs of houses are blanketed in white -- except for a certain portion of the roof of one home, on which the snow had completely melted. Police, deducing that the attic was likely an illegal marijuana greenhouse, made arrests. [Daily Mail (London), 2-9-2015]

News You Can Use: If you're in pain, shouting "Owww!" has measurable therapeutic value. Writing recently in the Journal of Pain, researchers from the National University of Singapore hypothesize that the muscle movements in vocalizing somehow divert or confuse pain signals, which otherwise would go unimpeded to the brain. Of subjects who plunged their hands into extremely cold water, those who were allowed to vocalize kept their hands immersed for up to three minutes longer than those who were silent. (The "oww" sound is similar in many languages and is apparently instinctive from birth.) [International Business Times (New York), 2-2-2015]

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