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Day June 12, 2006

Disembodied Dog’s Head Kept Alive?

Above is a clip from a 1940’s film called Experiments in the Revival of Organisms where a dog is decapitated (not shown) and attached to a machine which allegedly keeps the head alive. Is it real?

Since its Prelinger Archives release, the film has provoked much controversy. Ken Smith, author of Mental Hygiene: Classroom Films 1945 – 1970, believes the film is fake. He mentions, among other things, that the decapitated dog scene shown in the film could have been produced with simple special effects. Smith cites only his reaction to the film as evidence. Others are skeptical of J. B. S. Haldane’s ties to the Communist party; they propose that the film was produced as Soviet propaganda.

World Cup Death Watch

WFMU is keeping track of how many World Cup related deaths have happened since the Cup began. Currently the death count stands at 9, six of the deaths resulting from a gang feud in Haiti over an electrical generator.

Definition of ‘Planet’ Expected in September

We may be back at having only eight planets again.

The International Astronomical Union (IAU) is expected to propose wording to delineate planets from other small, round objects at its 12-day General Assembly meeting in Prague this August. The proposal will be based on recommendations from a newly formed committee that includes experts outside the realm of astronomy tasked to break a deadlock in earlier committee discussions.

(via del.icio.us/plutor)

Throwing Liquid Nitrogen into a Swimming Pool

(via Bifurcated Rivets)

Dr. No and the case of the hospital bill

Ouch. Lucky for them that they have good health insurance.

It’s become somewhat of a household game to guess the total when one of these invoices arrives from a recent procedure. Since we were in the hospital for thirty-seven days, we knew this one would be a whopper. Sure enough: the grand total is $549,000. And that doesn’t include the bill from the surgical team (in other words, it’s for just the hospitalization overhead, not the surgical procedure itself).

(via del.icio.us/wcitymike)

The Asian Giant Hornet


The species Vespa mandarinia is a very large-sized wasp with a Body length 27 – 45 mm; unbelievable, the queens reach 5.5 cms in length!

Rectal Examination Trainer


All sorts of interesting products at Limbs and Things. I was too afraid to click on the Catheterisation Trainer.

If steroids are cheating, why isn’t LASIK?

From Slate:

A month ago, Mark McGwire was hauled before a congressional hearing and lambasted as a cheater for using a legal, performance-enhancing steroid precursor when he broke baseball’s single-season home run record.

A week ago, Tiger Woods was celebrated for winning golf’s biggest tournament, the Masters, with the help of superior vision he acquired through laser surgery.

What’s the difference?

(via del.icio.us/revgeorge)

Sunday Bloody Sunday

Bush singing Sunday Bloody Sunday.

Why Israel’s capture of Eichmann caused panic at the CIA

From The Guardian:

On May 23 1960, when Israeli prime minister David Ben-Gurion announced to the Knesset that “Adolf Eichmann, one of the greatest Nazi war criminals, is in Israeli custody”, US and West German intelligence services reacted to the stunning news not with joy but alarm.

Newly declassified CIA documents show the Americans and the German BND knew Eichmann was hiding in Argentina at least two years before Israeli agents snatched him from the streets of Buenos Aires on his way back from work. They knew how long he had been in the country and had a rough idea of the alias the Nazi fugitive was using there, Klement.

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