World’s Strangest

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Redesigned Girl Scout Merit Badges

The times they are a-changin’ and changin’ with the times are the Girl Scouts. First, they let boys in, and then this: redesigned merit badges that are more relevant to today’s modern world. Beth Teitell [...]

Font for Dyslexia

Watching my kids learning how to read made me truly appreciate how difficult it can be to distinguish letters of the Roman alphabet. If you think about it, a lot of the letters are truly alike – b and p are the same thing with different rotation, v and w look almost the same and [...]

Man Eating a Hot Dog a Day For 31 Days

Would you get sick of eating the same thing for lunch every day for a month? One guy in Massachusetts seems to be so devoted to hot dogs that in celebration of National Hot Dog Month (yes seriously there is a National Hot Dog Month) he is doing just that.   NATICK, Mass., July 28 (UPI) — [...]

The Old-fashioned "Homepage"

In the days before the internet (actually 1912-1963), Bostonians could get news headlines at a glance by dropping by the storefront office of The Boston Globe. Handwritten signs and blackboards had the top stories, breaking news, and even sports stats in big print as fast as they were available. And of course, if you wanted [...]

The Quick 10: Boston Marathon Facts

I’m out again next week, and once again, the lovely Adrienne Crezo will be keeping you entertained and educated. I know – it’s awfully close to my last vacation, but it’s actually just a trip postponed from last year. My sister-in-law ran her first Boston Marathon in 2010, you see, but I was too pregnant [...]

Tsunami Created a Giant Whirlpool Off Coast of Japan

Watch a boat perilously drifting towards a giant whirlpool [YouTube] off the coast of Japan that was created by the earthquake and tsunami. Elsewhere, cars, boats, and houses are being tossed like toys [YouTube] by the powerful waves. Picture: Kyodo/Reuters The Big Picture Blog over at The Boston Globe and Alan Taylor’s new In Focus photo blog over [...]

Extreme Couponing

Good shoppers use coupons to save money. Extreme couponers have something a bit more in mind whenever they scour their Sunday circulars: they want stuff for free. That’s right: Free, as in zilch, zip and zero dollar. With a bit of knowledge and a lot of planning, the practitioner of “extreme couponing” can get a [...]

Gym Scales Member Fees on Keeping Fitness Committments

Gym-Pact is a company founded by Yifan Zhang and Geoff Oberhofer that arranges for group membership rates at fitness clubs in Boston. Customers pay higher rates the more often that they skip workouts, thus encouraging them to keep in shape: Gym-Pact offers what Zhang calls motivational fees — customers agree to pay more if they miss [...]

Easy is True: How Our Brain Likes to Think Easy Thoughts

Cognitive fluency is a fancy name given by psychologists to describe something simple: most people prefer things that are easy to think about than those that are hard. That’s pretty intuitive albeit overly simple – but does cognitive fluency really factor into our daily lives? Perhaps more than you’re even aware of, according to this article [...]