World’s Strangest

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Music History #11: “The Ballad of Ira Hayes”

“The Ballad of Ira Hayes” Written by Pete La Farge (1963) Performed by Johnny Cash The Music Folk singer and songwriter Peter La Farge packed a lot into his thirty-four years on Earth. The son of a Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist was a Korean War vet, a rodeo cowboy, an actor, and a singer who was part of [...]

How an 18th-Century Mutiny May Help Explain Migraine Headaches

Jupiterimages On April 28, 1789, Fletcher Christian and 18 other sailors aboard the HMS Bounty wrested control of the ship from their commanding officer, Lieutenant William Bligh. The mutineers sent Bligh and the members of the crew loyal to him off in a lifeboat in the South Pacific, then set sail to some nearby islands for [...]

There Will Be No Friday This Week In Samoa

Friday has been canceled in Samoa. The South Pacific nation is switching to a different time zone, which will put them on the other side of the International Date Line. People in Samoa (population 193,000) want to be closer time-wise to Australia, New Zealand, China and Tonga because they do so much more day-to-day business with [...]

An Island Nation Facing Its Own Demise

Tuvalu, in the South Pacific, is made up of nine small islands with a population of 11,000. It is estimated that the entire atoll will be uninhabitable in about 50 years due to climate change. Already the citizens are feeling the effects, as high tide floods the neighborhoods like never before. Sixty-four-year-old Ioane Malologa said, “I [...]

11 Broadway Musicals Featuring Characters in the U.S. Military

Not only have the men and women of the United States Armed Forces served their country, they have also served as inspiration for the Great White Way. 1. Carmelina (1979) This was the story of a single mother who told everyone in her small Italian town that the father of her teenage daughter was an American soldier [...]

Tropical Island Infinite Photo

A couple of years ago we posted about an infinite photo called As Seen on Earth. National Geographic has a new infinite photo project called Tropical Island. At the link, you can select a piece of the image and click to zoom in on more images, and then click again to zoom in to yet [...]

Extreme Vacation: Descending Into an Active Volcano

Photo: Bradley Ambrose Tired of your boring ol’ vacation? Try extreme vacations, which will definitely make you feel alive, if they don’t kill you first. National Geographic has a gallery of 20 of the most extreme, hair-raising adventures on the planet. For example: Descend Into an Active VolcanoVanuatu, South Pacific As a general rule, lava is best seen [...]

Around the World in Religious Traditions

VIAGRA FOR YOUR AFTERLIFE (Image credit: Flickr user sweart) Packing for the hereafter just got easier. According to a Chinese tradition, when a person dies, mourners should burn replicas of household items so the deceased can enjoy these in the afterlife. The hope is that if the dead are appeased with burnt offerings, their ghosts will refrain [...]

Cold Cases

The following is an article from the book History’s Lists from Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader. Rumor has it that Amelia Earhart and the grassy-knoll gunman have been found in a bar in Atlantis. Whew -three mysteries solved. Now, on to these. 1. THE BABUSHKA LADY The Mystery: President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on November [...]

Better Than Christmas Songs: Melanesian Choral Music

Unless you’ve lived in the South Pacific or are a big fan of Terrence Malick’s war epic The Thin Red Line, which featured a few of these songs, chances are you probably haven’t heard a lot of Melanesian choral music. Well, it’s time to change that. It’s entirely a capella, and there’s something so warm [...]