Leopard Kills Baboon And Attempts to Save Baby Baboon

From the Daily Mail:

“It was as if nature had turned on its head completely,” says Dereck Joubert, a filmmaker who followed Legadema for three-and-a-half years in her natural habitat, the Okavango Delta of Botswana – the verdant flood plains known as Africa’s Garden of Eden.

“She had killed the mother primate, but then found this live new-born on the ground. The little baboon called out, and we thought we were going to hear a major crunch and the leopard smacking its lips, but instead the baby baboon put its paws out and walked towards the young leopard.

“Legadema paused for a moment, apparently not knowing what to do. Then she gently picked it up in her mouth, holding it by the scruff of its neck and carrying the infant up a tree to keep it safe.”

The Waste of Christmas Presents

Great article from the New Yorker on why holiday shopping is a waste of time and money. I’ll admit that I am horrible at buying gifts for people. Whenever I find something I think the person would like, I assume that if they really wanted it they would have bought it already.

We all know that bad gifts inflict a cost—just think of the rigid smiles that greet an unwanted floral tie or Josh Rouse CD—but it’s surprising how big that cost can be. Since the early nineteen-nineties, Joel Waldfogel, an economist at the University of Pennsylvania, has been doing a series of studies in which college students are asked to put a value on the presents they receive. Waldfogel’s main finding is that, in general, people spend a lot more on presents than they’re worth to those who receive them, a phenomenon that he calls “the deadweight loss of Christmas.” A deadweight loss is created when you spend eighty dollars to give me a sweater that I would spend only sixty-five dollars to buy myself. Waldfogel estimates that somewhere between ten and eighteen per cent of seasonal spending becomes deadweight loss, which means that billions of dollars a year is now going to waste.

(via Kottke)

Dawkins Speaks at Fair Hills Kindergarten Regarding Santa Claus


My goal in all of this is that, as children, you should be raised only on truth, reason, fact, and intellect. Together we should be working toward a point in the not-so-distant future where the words “Santa Claus” or “Kris Kringle” or “Father Christmas” create the same response as fingernails on a chalkboard. There is nothing wrong with disbelief in Santa. I can see that the topic makes many of you uncomfortable. However, this should not be viewed as a bad thing. You may weep now, but your tears are a positive, not a negative. You are now facing the truth, which comes in many forms and is not always comfortable. This is a fact that you will be exposed to again and again throughout your lives. If you wish to live a life that contains only comfortable information and not necessarily the truth, then yours will be a highly deluded existence. Your intellectual maturity depends on whether or not you are capable of accepting the truth at this early age. That is why there is no better place to begin than with the absurdity that is Santa Claus and Christmas Magic.

(via Kottke)