Saturday, May 30, 2009

When the ice-cream headache strikes

Do you know the feeling when you eat ice-cream too fast and you get a sudden, very painful headache? It's called sphenopalatine ganglioneuralgia and it is caused by the sudden dilation of blood vessels in the head.

Luckily, I haven't had this feeling since childhood. I hated it back then. You cannot do anything, but to wait for it to go away.

Ice-cream hell. :)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Run if the terrorbird approaches

Titanis was its name and it ruled North America. That's right, a bird was the ruler of the US of A a few million years ago. It couldn't fly, but boy it could run and it didn't hesitate to use its axe-like beak if you didn't appease it.

Would you like a bird as your ruler?

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Knee-deep in the dead

In 1487 for the re-consecration of Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlan the Aztec guys sacrificed thousands of people. According to the historical sources the victims were walking slowly in 4 queues (each several kilometers long) toward the temple and there the priests killed them and cut their heart out continuously for days:

"At the inauguration of this Great Temple in 1487, Ahuizotl ordered the sacrifice of many prisoners of war; an average of 1,000 victims a day were sacrificed over a period of twenty days. Each day blood ran like a river onto the pavement of the Great Plaza, and the stairs of the great pyramid were literally bathed in blood."

We denounce the bloody conquest of Mexico these days, but the Aztecs themselves weren't exactly angels back then.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

How to kill the world's oldest tree quickly and easily

Prometheus was the oldest known tree until 1964. It began to grown in the bronze age and it managed to survive everything since then until some young researcher came around who studied climate changes.

He couldn't determine the age of the tree with his borer, so he told the forest service to cut it down. They did and he was able to study the age of the tree easily by looking at the stump:

Pity the Little Ice Age he wanted to study began only 600 years ago, so choosing such an old tree was a slight overshot. Sic itur gloria mundi.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The story of the girl with the two heads

Check out these girls. They seem very happy and relaxed. I'd say they are much happier than some "normal" people. Abigail and Brittany Hensel are conjoined twins who share one body. Kudos to them.