I meant to Pee on it, I swear

September 26, 2007

Those crazy inventive Asians are at it again. For those of you who are secretly water sport inclined, now you can have a alternative outlet for your zeal. (Aside from the toilet).

NoPoPo (Non-Pollution Power) Aqua Batteries are available in both AA and AAA form, although the company page shows they are producing the technology for all sizes of battery, and can only be currently purchased in Japan. The batteries can be recharged with various different fluids using the new development which forms electric power using liquid as a catalyst. The basic principle is that a mixture of magnesium and carbon reacts when mixed with a liquid to produce, in the case of the AA battery, up to 500 milliamp-hours (mAh) of life. Each time the battery is recharged it has a lower power level than the time before and the life cycle allows for about 3 to 5 recharges before disposing of the battery. Each battery can potentially keep its charge for up to 10 years which could be great for many life saving devices in remote locations. Since the battery does not contain mercury and other harmful materials, it can be easily disposed of without worry for the environment.

Story

While it sounds just weird/gross, I think they may be on to something. In the developed world it could add much needed levity (Imagine: Someone running around the house having to pee so bad, but wants to find the batteries first. Or someone who wants batteries for the remote or something, but just can’t force any out, so they go ask their neighbor.) In the developing world, it would provide an environmentally friendly renewable battery source.

Advertisements

Odds and Ends

September 24, 2007

Odd things happen every day; the only difference is these just made the news. I present the 5 random stories I came across, in no particular order.

  1. Employees at a German butcher’s shop were surprised to discover a customer had hidden two sex toys in their sausages for transport to Dubai.
  2. An Australian burglar broke into a neighbor’s house and played sex games in the bathroom with a bottle of toilet detergent and a vacuum cleaner. He was sentence to 12 months community service.
  3. A lonely baboon in a private Lithuanian zoo has adopted a chicken he saved from certain death last month and the two have formed a fast friendship, the zoo’s director said Friday. The chicken was meant to be food for another animal, but escaped. This is the cute story of the day.
  4. A Venezuelan man who had been declared dead woke up in the morgue in excruciating pain after medical examiners began their autopsy. Carlos Camejo, 33, was declared dead after a highway accident and taken to the morgue, where examiners began an autopsy only to realize something was amiss when he started bleeding. They quickly sought to stitch up the incision on his face. The person who started the autopsy is the tool bag of the day.
  5. 16,000 words have lost their hyphens in a new edition of the Oxford English Dictionary. Some became two words and some were shortened to one. Ice cream, test tube, and hobby horse all lost a hyphen and are now sets of two words. Bumblebee, chickpea, and crybaby are now each officially one word.

Source Articles


Flamingos in the News

September 19, 2007

I have not one, but two flamingo stories I came across while scanning the news.

First:

Animal expert Jack Hanna and an 11-month-old flamingo became trapped while trying to squeeze through an airport security turnstile in Ohio. It was one of those turnstiles that has horizontal bars all the way up it. Hanna said. “I never thought about the crate being square and the turnstile being round,” he said. Hanna, 60, pushed the flamingo’s 2-foot-by-3-foot compartment into the turnstile, then continued pushing while straddling the crate. That is when he noticed they were both stuck with bars in his face. He eventually squeezed out, but three firefighters needed to help remove the flamingo.

Source

Second:

You have to watch the video, but it is worth it. I’ll give you a hint: It involves a hypocritical moron with an odd face and no respect for rules messing up. It is a person who I just happen to strongly dislike


I know how to keep warm…

September 17, 2007

 ahh_love_cold_love.jpg

Wednesday was do-it day in the Russian province, ULYANOVSK.

“The governor of a central Russian province urged couples to skip work Wednesday and make love instead to help boost Russia‘s low birth-rate.  And if a woman gives birth in exactly nine months time — on Russia’s national day on June 12 — she will qualify for a prize, perhaps even winning a new home.”

They apparently are doing this annually, and the prizes range from cars and fridges to new homes.  The goal is to reverse the trend of low birth in Russia.  People are responding positively.   I think we should do it in America.  I vote next Wednesday!


Gays on a Plane?

September 17, 2007

“Air New Zealand is delving into the gay and lesbian market with a special themed flight that will feature drag queens, pink cocktails and a cabaret performed by the flight crew.

The destination for the airline’s one-time “Pink Flight,” scheduled to depart San Francisco International Airport on Feb. 26, is the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras in Sydney, Australia, one of the world’s most well-attended gay events, said Jodi Williams, an Air New Zealand marketing director.

“We are looking at tailoring the inseat entertainment and having gay-friendly movies and contests and different music and things like that,” Williams said. The airline also plans to throw a “Get-Onboard-Girlfriend” going away party for its passengers, who will pay an average of $1,000 roundtrip.

The flight will be modeled after an Auckland-to-Sydney trip Air New Zealand made this year for the gay Mardi Gras, according to Williams. Before that full flight, the crew put on pink feather boas and sang for its couple hundreds passengers, she said.

“Even the pilot was wearing fairy wings and got into it,” Williams said.

Michael Wilke, executive director of a New York-based advertising advocacy group called the Commercial Closet Association, said that while American, Air Canada and other airline companies have become visible sponsors of gay pride events, none had so far used campy programming to appeal to gay and lesbian travelers.

“They could probably do very well with it,” Wilke said. “It really sounds like someone put together the idea of what a gay cruise is and just applied that to the air. And even gay cruises don’t feature employees in particular outfits or gay-themed movies.”

Air New Zealand’s Williams said the airline still is working out some details of the flight plan, such as what will go inside the goodie bags passengers will get. Since it takes 14 hours to get from San Francisco to Sydney, the airline also plans to schedule in some down time during the overnight flight.

“We had to think about keeping people entertained while knowing they will want their beauty sleep,” she said.”

Source


Hybrid Taxis

September 15, 2007

“Karambir Sangha used to be an accountant, before he became a cabbie. And so in his head, he ticked off what it means to him to be the first of 10 taxi drivers in the Seattle area to begin driving a hybrid in the past two weeks.

And though he’s been driving the hybrid only since Aug. 31, he figures he’ll save $15 to $20 a day; and since he drives six or seven days a week, that’s more than $100 more for the immigrant from India, his wife and two children, 13 and 9, to live on. Rising gas prices are particularly hard on the cabbies who make airport runs because, unlike Seattle cabbies, they don’t have the benefit of a special fuel surcharge to offset gas prices.

“You give up, I suppose, the things that you have if you have more money,” said Sangha, who’s been driving a cab for seven years. “Eating out, going to the movies, shopping.” Under King County and Seattle rules, cabbies cannot drive cars more than seven years old, and Sangha said that this year it was time to replace his anyway. Though the $24,000 Toyota Prius is expensive, he figured — like a lot of drivers these days — it made more sense in the long run.

When the Port of Seattle, which contracts with the Seattle-Tacoma International Taxi Association to pick up passengers at the airport, agreed to allow up to 25 aging taxis to be replaced with hybrids, Sangha was first to buy his. So far, 10 hybrid STITA taxis are on the road, said Sheila Stickel, the taxi association’s liaison with the port. By the end of the month, all 25 should be running.

And in the taxi business, where the clicking of the meter is a reminder that time is money, not having to wait in line for gas, he said, means having time to pick up another fare very day.

And then, as is often the case, when it comes with new cars, though not necessarily with taxis, there’s the coolness factor. Amrik Singh, 38, was on the taxi line in his new hybrid taxi, showing off how he gets in. A sensor reads a card he carries and opens the door when he approaches. And there’s no ignition — just a button on the console to start the car. Another button puts it in park. A small monitor shows the view from a camera in the back of the car. There have been a few customers, he said, who have thanked him for doing his part for the environment. But ultimately, it’s saving money on gas. He was asked if the hybrid was making a difference in his life.

“$400 a month,” he said.”

Full article: article


Am I in heaven?

September 13, 2007

artyoussif01cnn.jpg

LOS ANGELES, California (CNN) — Youssif, the 5-year-old Iraqi boy who was savagely burned by masked men, arrived in the United States late Tuesday with his family — the first step toward his lengthy rehabilitation. For a family whose lives were tortured by the random and brutal violence of Iraq, the sheer magnitude of stepping onto American soil was surreal. His parents were rendered speechless. They didn’t need to speak. The joy on their faces was palpable.

They had traveled more than 7,500 miles to get help for their son. It marked the first time the family had ever left their homeland, let alone flown on a plane.

“Oh my God, it’s so green. Am I in heaven?” Youssif’s mother, Zainab, said after arriving in Chicago before the family flew on to Los Angeles where Youssif will be treated. The night before they departed, Youssif didn’t sleep a wink. He woke the family up extra early, shouting, “Let’s go! Let’s go!”

They were greeted by members of the Children’s Burn Foundation, the nonprofit organization that paid for the family’s travel and is covering all of Youssif’s medical bills.

Youssif playfully fought with his father over the luggage cart in Los Angeles International Airport. “I want to push it. I want to push it,” he said gleefully.

The family was then whisked away to the two-bedroom, two-bath apartment where they will be staying during Youssif’s treatment. It’s a stark contrast to their humble one-room home in a rundown central Baghdad neighborhood rife with violence.

When Youssif walked into the new home, he glanced at the plush wall-to-wall carpet and ordered everyone to take their shoes off. Don’t get it dirty, he said. His mother opened a door in the master bedroom and marveled at the walk-in closet. “Is this a bedroom? It can’t be a closet,” she said.

Standing on the apartment’s balcony, Youssif’s father turned to Barbara Friedman, executive director of the Children’s Burn Foundation. “You see America on television, but you never imagine or dream that you will ever be here.” He paused, tears in his eyes. “It’s more than paradise.”

On this day, the family was simply ecstatic to have finally made it here. They arrived on September 11 — the date the United States will always remember as a day of unspeakable horror.

But for this family, 9/11 will always mean something much different: Hope and a better future for their son — and a newfound love for America.