Thursday, 24 February 2011

Exercise made Easy

The equipment may have been designed to make exercising easier, but working out in a full whalebone corset or formal suit, must have made the whole experience a lot more challenging........ 

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Forget Weight Watchers

And just reach for those tapeworms instead.........

If only I'd known about tapeworms,
we'd never have wasted all that money on an X-Box Kinect

Monday, 29 November 2010

Big Hole

Ever had one of those times when you wished the ground would just open up and swallow you....

Sinkhole, Guatemala

In 2007, a 300 foot deep sinkhole swallowed a dozen homes in Guatemala - killing 2 and causing thousands to be evacuated. The sinkhole was caused by rains and an underground sewage flow.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Hand of Glory

The "Hand of Glory" supposedly comes from an executed criminal and was cut off the body while the corpse was still hanging from the gibbet.
The recipe for its preparation is simple : squeeze the blood out of the hand; embalm it in a shroud and steep it in a solution of saltpetre, salt and pepper for two weeks and then dry in the sun.
The other essential for its use is a candle made from hanged man's fat, wax and Lapland sesame. This candle was then fixed between the fingers of the hand and lit when a burglar broke into a house. Reputedly it prevented the inhabitants of the house from waking up thus allowing the burglar to investigate the house at his leisure. Various forms of this European legend abound.

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Washing the Python

I just love this picture of the little boy washing the Python. In Thailand and Malaysia where snakes are commonly kept as pets, probably to keep away venomous varieties and rats and mice ( also anything else small enough to cross it's path ) but this little boy does not seem in the least bothered by the large reptile.

photograph from Flickr

Sea Cucumbers

Oh! these are so gross, yuk..............

Sea cucumbers are echinoderms—like starfish and sea urchins. There are some 1,250 known species, and many of these animals are indeed shaped like soft-bodied cucumbers.
All sea cucumbers are ocean dwellers, though some inhabit the shallows and others live in the deep ocean. They live on or near the ocean floor—sometimes partially buried beneath it.
Sea cucumbers feed on tiny particles like algae, minute aquatic animals, or waste materials, which they gather in with 8 to 30 tube feet that look like tentacles surrounding their mouths. The animals break down these particles into even smaller pieces, which become fodder for bacteria, and thus recycle them back into the ocean ecosystem. Earthworms perform a similar function in terrestrial ecosystems.

Sea cucumbers, particularly eggs and young larvae, are prey for fish and other marine animals. They are also enjoyed by humans, especially in Asia, and some species are farmed as delicacies.
When threatened, some sea cucumbers discharge sticky threads to ensnare their enemies. Others can mutilate their own bodies as a defense mechanism. They violently contract their muscles and jettison some of their internal organs out of their anus. The missing body parts are quickly regenerated.

Sea cucumbers can breed sexually or asexually. Sexual reproduction is more typical, but the process is not very intimate. The animals release both eggs and sperm into the water and fertilization occurs when they meet. There must be many individuals in a sea cucumber population for this reproductive method to be successful. Indeed, many parts of the deep ocean host large herds of these ancient animals, grazing on the microscopic bounty of marine waters.