Doofus Of The Day #768

Today’s award is made courtesy of the lovely Phlegm, who put up this video clip on her blog the other day.  It’s self-explanatory.  The comments from onlookers are priceless. Thirteen men versus the machine . . . and the machine nearly won! Peter

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The birth of the Israeli Air Force

There’s a new movie in production that will tell the story of the beginnings of the Israeli Air Force and the role played by foreign volunteer pilots in its formation. Above and Beyond: The Birth of the Israeli Air Force In 1948, a group of World War II pilots volunteered to fight for Israel in the War of Independence. As members of “Machal” – volunteers from abroad – this ragtag band of brothers not only turned the tide of the war, preventing the possible annihilation of Israel at the very moment of its birth; they also laid the groundwork for

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A wartime mystery explained at last

Military history buffs will recall that prior to the D-Day landings in 1944, there was consternation in security circles when some of the code-names for major elements of the operation appeared as solutions to crossword puzzle clues in the Daily Telegraph.  The crossword compiler was actually arrested and questioned, but cleared of any wrongdoing. Many years later, an explanation emerged.  The Telegraph reports: As part of the commemorations for the 40th anniversary of D-Day, the Telegraph revisited the crossword saga. Bill Deedes, then the paper’s editor, was alarmed by the scandal afresh, and instructed the puzzles editor to check that

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Sounds like a recipe for success to me . . .

I note that many people seem to have developed what some call ‘Amazon Derangement Syndrome‘ – knee-jerk opposition to anything Amazon.com does, says, introduces, etc.  I’ve run into this in the publishing world, where authors like myself can now bring out our own work and reap the benefits and rewards, bypassing the ‘gatekeepers’ of publishing houses that haven’t been able to keep up with technological and social change.  Needless to say, I’m an unabashed fan of Amazon. One begins to get an inkling of how successful the company has been at building, not just its customer base, but also its

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The not-so-sweet smell of success?

I was highly amused to come across an advertisement on YouTube for something called Poo-Pourri.  It’s a deodorizing spray that one uses in one’s toilet before a No. 2, which the manufacturers claim will ‘seal’ the resultant odor beneath an impermeable layer on top of the water.  I’ve no idea whether or not it works, but they offer a money-back guarantee, so I daresay it can’t be too bad. Here’s the first advertisement that I saw. Next, one directed at men. And finally, a blooper and out-take reel. I’m guessing this might sell well to churches.  After all, they’re all

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More great pictures

The 2014 National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest is currently under way.  Entries close on June 30th.  The Atlantic has put up 30 of the best images submitted so far.  Here are a few of them to whet your appetite, greatly reduced in size to fit this blog. A short-eared owl in a nature reserve in Kuwait An ice cave in southeast Iceland Svalbard, Norway There are more (and much larger) pictures at the link.  Great photographs and interesting viewing. Peter

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We have it so easy today . . .

When I look at some of the challenges my father’s generation had to overcome – the Great Depression, World War II, and everything that followed – it seems sometimes that we have it awfully easy compared to them.  I was reminded of that by the obituary of the late Colonel Miloslav Bitton.  The Telegraph reports: Colonel Miloslav Bitton, who has died aged 94, ran escape lines out of Czechoslovakia in the Second World War before serving with the Desert Rats in the Eighth Army and then as an RAF fighter pilot in bombing raids over Germany. In 1939 Bitton had

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The ratel escape artist

The BBC has produced a TV documentary about the ratel (the Afrikaans name for Africa’s honey badger).  Despite its relatively small size, it’s one of the most intelligent and aggressive predators on the African continent, treated with great respect by humans and most other animals.  Here’s an excerpt from the program that demonstrates the animal’s intelligence, cunning and determination. I’ve met up with ratels in the bush on several occasions, and gave them a wide berth. My buddy Lawdog and his brother had an interesting (and hysterical) encounter with one in Nigeria during their youth.  You can read about the

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Around The Blogs 2014-04-27

I hope you enjoy my weekly ‘harvest’ of interesting posts from around the blogosphere.  I don’t get much feedback from my readers about it, although I get notes from other bloggers now and again thanking me for linking to them. I’d like to encourage other bloggers to do something like this on a regular basis.  It helps to publicize other good blogs, and increase their readership;  it gives all of us a source of material that we can bookmark every time we come across it, and simply collect the links each week in a post like this;  and I think

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Another big load – this one from Australia

A tip o’ the hat to Australian reader Sven W., who read my previous post and e-mailed me these photographs of a mammoth mining truck being moved by road in Australia.  I’ve had to drastically reduce their size to fit here. Thanks, Sven!  Much obliged to you.  (I was struck by how similar to parts of Africa the terrain is in your part of the world – parts of the southwestern USA, too.) Peter

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