Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - December 22

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - 5 hours 3 min ago
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

If Teresa's daughter is my daughter's mother, what am I to Teresa?

a. Grandmother
b. Mother
c. Daughter
d. Granddaughter
e. I am Teresa

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - December 22 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - 5 hours 3 min ago
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - December 22

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - 5 hours 3 min ago
BrainBashers Daily Game

World Wars
   Take the world by force. Battle 1 to 7 opposing armies. Wage war and strategize your way to victory.
[Played on the BrainBashers Games website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

BrainBashers RSS Feed - Unsubscribe?

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - 5 hours 3 min ago
To unsubscribe from the BrainBashers RSS feed please view the notes on BrainBashers.
Categories: Fun Stuff

December 22, 1956: First gorilla born in captivity

This Day in History - Sun, 12/21/2014 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1956, a baby gorilla named Colo enters the world at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio, becoming the first-ever gorilla born in captivity. Weighing in at approximately 4 pounds, Colo, a western lowland gorilla whose name was a combination of Columbus and Ohio, was the daughter of Millie and Mac, two gorillas captured in French Cameroon, Africa, who were brought to the Columbus Zoo in 1951. Before Colo's birth, gorillas found at zoos were caught in the wild, often by brutal means. In order to capture a gorilla when it was young and therefore still small enough to handle, hunters frequently had to kill the gorilla's parents and other family members.

Gorillas are peaceful, intelligent animals, native to Africa, who live in small groups led by one adult male, known as a silverback. There are three subspecies of gorilla: western lowland, eastern lowland and mountain. The subspecies are similar and the majority of gorillas in captivity are western lowland. Gorillas are vegetarians whose only natural enemy is the humans who hunt them. On average, a gorilla lives to 35 years in the wild and 50 years in captivity.

At the time Colo was born, captive gorillas often never learned parenting skills from their own parents in the wild, so the Columbus Zoo built her a nursery and she was reared by zookeepers. In the years since Colo's arrival, zookeepers have developed habitats that simulate a gorilla's natural environment and many captive-born gorillas are now raised by their mothers. In situations where this doesn't work, zoos have created surrogacy programs, in which the infants are briefly cared for by humans and then handed over to other gorillas to raise.

Colo, who generated enormous public interest and is still alive today, went on to become a mother, grandmother, and in 1996, a great-grandmother to Timu, the first surviving infant gorilla conceived by artificial insemination. Timu gave birth to her first baby in 2003.

Today, there are approximately 750 gorillas in captivity around the world and an estimated 100,000 lowland gorillas (and far fewer mountain gorillas) remaining in the wild. Most zoos are active in captive breeding programs and have agreed not to buy gorillas born in the wild. Since Colo's birth, 30 gorillas have been born at the Columbus Zoo alone.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - December 21

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sun, 12/21/2014 - 6:28pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

After visiting my Great Aunt Anne, I travelled home in her old jalopy. The car was old and battered, it had a leak from the petrol tank, and I was stuck in second gear.

This meant that I could only travel along at a steady 30 miles per hour and managed a paltry 20 miles per gallon of fuel.

At the start of the journey I had placed exactly 10 gallons of fuel into the tank. I knew though, that the fuel tank lost fuel at the rate of half a gallon per hour.

Just as I arrived home, the car stopped because it had run out of fuel and I had only just made it.

How far was it from my Great Aunt's to my home?

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - December 21 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sun, 12/21/2014 - 6:28pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - December 21

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sun, 12/21/2014 - 6:28pm
BrainBashers Daily Game

Snake Twist
   A game with a small twist.
[Played on the BrainBashers Games website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

palinode

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Sun, 12/21/2014 - 12:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for December 21, 2014 is:

palinode • \PAL-uh-nohd\  • noun
1 : an ode or song recanting or retracting something in an earlier poem 2 : a formal retraction

Examples:
Oscar Wilde wrote this famous palinode in an introduction to an essay: "Not that I agree with everything that I have said in this essay. There is much with which I entirely disagree."

"My Life Among the Deathworks is a monumental palinode, designed to unwrite the book that made [Philip] Rieff's name." — Adam Kirsch, New York Sun, March 7, 2007

Did you know?
Does singing someone's praises in a palinode pay off? It did in the case of Stesichorus, a Greek poet of the 6th century B.C. According to Plato, old Stesichorus was struck blind after writing a poem insulting Helen of Troy, but his sight was restored after he wrote an apologetic palinode. That poet was only too glad to apply the Greek word palinoidia (a compound of palin, meaning "back" or "again," and aeidein, meaning "to sing"). So were 16th-century English poets, who borrowed and modified the Greek term to refer to odes of their own.

Categories: Fun Stuff

December 21, 1988: Pan Am Flight 103 explodes over Scotland

This Day in History - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1988, Pan Am Flight 103 from London to New York explodes in midair over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing all 243 passengers and 16 crew members aboard, as well as 11 Lockerbie residents on the ground. A bomb hidden inside an audio cassette player detonated in the cargo area when the plane was at an altitude of 31,000 feet. The disaster, which became the subject of Britain's largest criminal investigation, was believed to be an attack against the United States. One hundred eighty nine of the victims were American.

Islamic terrorists were accused of planting the bomb on the plane while it was at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany. Authorities suspected the attack was in retaliation for either the 1986 U.S. air strikes against Libya, in which leader Muammar al-Qaddafi's young daughter was killed along with dozens of other people, or a 1988 incident, in which the U.S. mistakenly shot down an Iran Air commercial flight over the Persian Gulf, killing 290 people.

Sixteen days before the explosion over Lockerbie, the U.S. embassy in Helsinki, Finland, received a call warning that a bomb would be placed on a Pan Am flight out of Frankfurt. There is controversy over how seriously the U.S. took the threat and whether travelers should have been alerted, but officials later said that the connection between the call and the bomb was coincidental.

In 1991, following a joint investigation by the British authorities and the F.B.I., Libyan intelligence agents Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi and Lamen Khalifa Fhimah were indicted for murder; however, Libya refused to hand over the suspects to the U.S. Finally, in 1999, in an effort to ease United Nations sanctions against his country, Qaddafi agreed to turn over the two men to Scotland for trial in the Netherlands using Scottish law and prosecutors. In early 2001, al-Megrahi was convicted and sentenced to life in prison and Fhimah was acquitted. Over the U.S. government's objections, Al-Megrahi was freed and returned to Libya in August 2009 after doctors determined that he had only months to live.

In 2003, Libya accepted responsibility for the bombing, but didn't express remorse. The U.N. and U.S. lifted sanctions against Libya and Libya agreed to pay each victim's family approximately $8 million in restitution. In 2004, Libya's prime minister said that the deal was the "price for peace," implying that his country only took responsibility to get the sanctions lifted, a statement that infuriated the victims' families. Pan Am Airlines, which went bankrupt three years after the bombing, sued Libya and later received a $30 million settlement.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - December 20

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:14pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

Below, 10 countries have been broken into chunks of letters.

These chunks have been mixed up, no chunk is used twice and all chunks are used.

Can you determine what the 10 countries are?

EZU ITZ ZIL ELA BRA GI IA FI
PAN MBA BEL AND BER ZI NL BO
CAM VEN DIA AND     UM SW
BWE MEX ERL ICO     JA LI

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Sudoku - December 20 - Easy

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:14pm
BrainBashers Daily Sudoku



Complete the grid such that every row, every column, and the nine 3x3 blocks contain the digits from 1 to 9.

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Game - December 20

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:14pm
BrainBashers Daily Game

Common Answers
   Compete with the rest of the world by predicting the most common answers to 10 easy questions.
[Played on the BrainBashers Puzzle/Illusion website]

Categories: Fun Stuff

Penn Jillette

Quotes of the Day - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:00pm
"Channeling is just bad ventriloquism. You use another voice, but people can see your lips moving."
Categories: Fun Stuff

Dick Clark

Quotes of the Day - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:00pm
"Humor is always based on a modicum of truth. Have you ever heard a joke about a father-in-law?"
Categories: Fun Stuff

Leslie Nielsen

Quotes of the Day - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:00pm
"'Who are you and how did you get in here?' 'I'm a locksmith. And, I'm a locksmith.'"
Categories: Fun Stuff

Edgar Allan Poe

Quotes of the Day - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 6:00pm
"Those who dream by day are cognizant of many things which escape those who dream only by night."
Categories: Fun Stuff

nurture

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day - Sat, 12/20/2014 - 12:00am

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day for December 20, 2014 is:

nurture • \NER-cher\  • verb
1 : to supply with nourishment 2 : to educate 3 : to further the development of : foster

Examples:
The mayor pushed for tax credits for small businesses as a way to nurture economic growth.

"In the late 1970s, a program was launched at the National Marine Fisheries laboratory in Galveston to nurture hatchlings that would instinctively return to beaches on Padre Island." — Harvey Rice, Houston Chronicle, November 18, 2014

Did you know?
It's no coincidence that nurture is a synonym of nourish—both are derived from the Latin verb nutrire, meaning "to suckle" or "to nourish." The noun nurture first appeared in English in the 14th century, but the verb didn't arrive until the 15th century. Originally, the verb nurture meant "to feed or nourish." The sense meaning "to promote the development of" didn't come into being until the end of the 18th century. Mary Wollstonecraft, mother of Frankenstein author Mary Shelley, is credited with first giving life to that sense in her Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792): "Public spirit must be nurtured by private virtue." Other nutrire descendants in English include nutrient, nutritious, nutriment, nutrition, and, of course, nourishment.

Categories: Fun Stuff

December 20, 1957: Elvis Presley is drafted

This Day in History - Fri, 12/19/2014 - 11:00pm

On this day in 1957, while spending the Christmas holidays at Graceland, his newly purchased Tennessee mansion, rock-and-roll star Elvis Presley receives his draft notice for the United States Army.  

With a suggestive style--one writer called him "Elvis the Pelvis"--a hit movie, Love Me Tender, and a string of gold records including "Heartbreak Hotel," "Blue Suede Shoes," "Hound Dog" and "Don't Be Cruel," Presley had become a national icon, and the world's first bona fide rock-and-roll star, by the end of 1956. As the Beatles' John Lennon once famously remarked: "Before Elvis, there was nothing." The following year, at the peak of his career, Presley received his draft notice for a two-year stint in the army. Fans sent tens of thousands of letters to the army asking for him to be spared, but Elvis would have none of it. He received one deferment--during which he finished working on his movie King Creole--before being sworn in as an army private in Memphis on March 24, 1958. 

After six months of basic training--including an emergency leave to see his beloved mother, Gladys, before she died in August 1958--Presley sailed to Europe on the USS General Randall. For the next 18 months, he served in Company D, 32nd Tank Battalion, 3rd Armor Corps in Friedberg, Germany, where he attained the rank of sergeant. For the rest of his service, he shared an off-base residence with his father, grandmother and some Memphis friends. After working during the day, Presley returned home at night to host frequent parties and impromptu jam sessions. At one of these, an army buddy of Presley's introduced him to 14-year-old Priscilla Beaulieu, whom Elvis would marry some years later. Meanwhile, Presley's manager, Colonel Tom Parker, continued to release singles recorded before his departure, keeping the money rolling in and his most famous client fresh in the public's mind. Widely praised for not seeking to avoid the draft or serve domestically, Presley was seen as a model for all young Americans. After he got his polio shot from an army doctor on national TV, vaccine rates among the American population shot from 2 percent to 85 percent by the time of his discharge on March 2, 1960.

Categories: Fun Stuff

Daily Puzzle - December 19

BrainBashers - Easy Sudoku - Fri, 12/19/2014 - 6:00pm
BrainBashers Daily Puzzle

Which three US states have been merged together:

CONEALHIWJIFERSORONIEYA

[Copyright: Kevin Stone]

Categories: Fun Stuff