Facebook Echo Chambers. It's Time To Ask Why

I de-friended someone on Facebook yesterday morning — and I liked it. This set me on a path to thinking more about Facebook echo chambers. There’s nothing much of interest I can say about the meme this individual chose to smear over my social feed like cat barf on kitchen linoleum. But it felt good to wipe it away. It was a satisfying moment of protest by omission to hit the friendship self-destruct button — to know that I never had to read this person’s opinion again. But now I’m not sure I m

The untold truth of martial arts legend Masahiko Kimura

Some legendary fighters spring up from unlikely places, their prodigious acumen for fisticuffs emerging as if from nowhere. This is not Masahiko Kimura's story. To all appearances, Kimura was born equal parts immovable object and unstoppable force. Masahiko Kimura was born in the late summer of 2017 in Kumamoto, Japan. At age 9, he began training in judo. By 15, he was a fourth dan blackbelt. Early pictures of Kimura leave little doubt about his pugilistic propensities — with his rectangular mus

Shoulders Back! – Waterways magazine

I can’t remember the last time I didn’t wake up in pain. I don’t mean to sound sorry for myself; I’m sure I’m not the only forty-something whose decades of sedentary desk work have taken their toll. But recently, the pain became harder to ignore. COVID-19 is at least partly to blame. Thanks to the “New Normal,” I now work exclusively at home, and my little hobby room/office just wasn’t built for the daily nine-to-five. My desk is an awkward contraption, procured eight years ago from Ikea becaus

Life on Venus? Who cares? | Loud News Net | Counter Culture

I learned a hell of a thing this week. It turns out that our hot planetary neighbor, Venus, is shrouded with trace elements of phosphine. Astronomers believe phosphine can only be generated by biological processes — either bacteria or industrial production. Now to be clear, the probability of a canning factory on Venus is pretty slim. But the bacteria thing? That’s getting a solid maybe from astronomers who make it their business to know such things. Yep, 2020 was the year the universe decided

Who Was Naughty Frog? … And Six More Mostly Meaningless Mysteries —

The mystery of Naughty Frog begins, for me, roughly twenty years ago. I’d fallen into an odd friendship with an old and frail neighbor. Bill. I forget how, exactly. I vaguely recall he was fond of Scotch. Anyway, one regular Sunday morning, Bill knocked on my door and handed me a thick khaki-green book. An album, more accurately, filled from cover to coffee-stained cover with postcards. Hundreds of the things. Turn of the 20th Century, mostly.

The disturbing past of Forest Haven Asylum

The US is littered with abandoned structures. Some of these spaces are entirely forgotten. Lost, their bones of brick and wood slowly return to the soil with barely a soul to Instagram their passing. Other structures are carefully curated and preserved, like a long-dead butterfly — pinned to cork, neatly labeled, and slowly doomed to fade under endless curious eyes. But a rare few abandoned structures jut raggedly from the earth, like an obscene finger gesture from the past. These places are sti

Cobra Kai — The Sequel 2020 Needed | Loud News Net

I was nine years old when I first discovered that one could master karate by waxing a car, painting a fence, and cultivating a passion for bonsai gardening. I was roughly 47 minutes older than that when I watched, wide-eyed, as Danny LaRusso executed a flawless crane kick to take out his Cobra Kai arch-nemesis and claim the All Valley Karate Tournament. Karate Kid was my first real taste of the scrappy underdog story. For the remainder of my awkward formative years, nothing else — not Skywalker

Darkest TV moments from the '00s

It's easy to remember TV shows of the '00s as a relentless rainbow of upbeat, primary-colored tales about people being there for one another, especially when the rain starts to pour. However, that televisual happy-scape of yesteryear (okay, less than 20 years ago) was actually speckled through with its fair share of dark 'n' dreary moments. The seedy televisual underbelly of the not-so-nice double-oughts had something mean, gritty, or just plain not cool for everyone — from grueling reality sho

The truth about jujitsu legend Jigoro Kano

Standing at a smidge over five feet and naturally slender, Kano was rejected from a handful of Jujutsu schools as a youth. But yearning for physical strength paid off, and at 18 he finally gained his place on a dojo mat. Instantly two things set him apart: his natural athletic talent, and an insatiable zeal to learn. He was relentless. He didn't just throw his body into the art. He launched his quick and cunning mind into the fray as well. Just one year after joining the dojo, Kano was selected

The bizarre origin of 'Little Green Men'

The bizarre origin of 'Little Green Men' On a hot August night in 1955, two cars screeched to a halt outside a rural police station in southwestern Kentucky. Eight members of the Sutton family poured into the station and reportedly (thank you, Skeptoid) uttered words that would, in decades since, inspire a deluge of delightfully corny B-grade science-fiction classics: "We need help. We've been fighting them for nearly four hours." Humans tend to spend a lot of time thinking about non-humans. S

The life and death of Harry Houdini

Born into complete poverty and obscurity, by the time he died, Harry Houdini had become one of the most recognized magicians, escape artists, and stage performers of all time. Throughout his lifetime, he'd devise a library of new magical techniques that would forever change how stage-magic was done. Along the way, he also forged the prototype for a new kind of magician — a prestidigitator who made his craft real and relatable outside of the stage.

Frozen treasures found in the depths of Antarctica

Antarctica is a remote enough chunk of the Earth as it is, but the speckle of tiny Antarctic islands surrounding the continent is ridiculously remote. Some of these islands are almost impossible to get a plane to fly over, let alone land on. One such speck on the map is Saunders Island, lying around 1,000 miles off the eastern edge of Antarctica's frigid coastline. Researchers analyzing high-resolution South Pole satellite imagery spotted something unusual about Saunders Island — or more specifi

Disruption And Change - How Unique Perspectives Can Change The World

Everyone is different. This is hardly a controversial or revolutionary observation. Unless you happen to live on some island somewhere conveniently populated with genetic clones of yourself, sooner or later you’re going to stumble across someone with different opinions. However, somehow the simple fact of difference seems to cause a lot of disturbance in this mixed up world of ours. Different opinions and perspectives are disruptive. They’re destabilizing.

The man who was successfully turned into a zombie

The man who was successfully turned into a zombie Haiti: 1962. A man checks himself into a hospital with labored breathing. The medical staff does their best but within a few hours of checking in, he's dead. His time of death is noted, and the body is carefully bagged and refrigerated. And there he remains in cold storage while his family, grief-stricken, make funeral arrangements. And the world flows on, as it always has and always will. Only this isn't the end of this particular man's story.

Anton LaVey: The truth about the Church of Satan founder

There are many different kinds of evil. Of course, you've got your just plain nasty black-on-black evil, like serial killers and tacky gold-chain wearing despots. Then you've got crazy evil (eating a firefly) and senseless evil (axing Firefly). And of course, let's not forget that there's a whole library of lesser quasi-evils: mildly foul deeds of infamy like sticking gum under public library desks or sneaking almond milk into an innocent person's coffee.
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